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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Egg Bread Recipe

I grew up on cheap white bread, to this day, it is what I prefer. I've been trying to do better about eating whole grains, I'm just not developing a real love for whole grain bread though. Oh, I suffer through and eat it because it's good for me, but it is definitely not my first choice in white bread is.

As I looked through my bread recipes yesterday, I came across one my friend Karyn from The Teakettle Corner gave me several years ago. I had completely forgotten about this little jewel. It's as close to cheap white bread as any homemade bread I have made. I teased Papa Bear with the smell of it, then teased him more as I explained how very light the loaf was, but he couldn't eat any of it yet as it needed to cool. When he was finally allowed to dive into it, he asked if I was going to make another loaf tomorrow! Believe me, this is really something coming from a die-hard wheat bread eater. I'm thinking next time I make it, I'll put the flour as 1/2 white and 1/2 wheat and see how it turns out. Who knows, if whole wheat bread can be as soft as white bread, I may just learn to eat it.

Egg Bread

1/2 C. water
2 C. white bread flour (I used regular white flour)
1 T. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 1/2 T. butter
1 egg
1 egg yolk (reserve white for later)
either 3/4 tsp fast rise yeast or 1 1/2 tsp active yeast

Place all ingredients as recommended into your bread machine and bake with light crust setting.

What I did is:
Place all the ingredients into the bread machine on the dough cycle. When this was complete, I turned it out onto the floured counter and kneaded it a few times. I then made it into a loaf shape and placed it into a greased loaf pan to rise (about and hour). I then brushed the top with the egg white left over from the extra egg yolk. Bake at 375* for 20-25 minutes.

This is so incredibly yummy, your Papa Bear will be begging for more too!

Feeling the Love

When I was younger~~much much younger~~I looked forward to my birthday each year. It almost seemed like I was starting the count down the day after my birthday for the next one. Now that I'm a little bit older, this day doesn't seem to be as sought after as it once was. As time goes on, the special day turns from parties and family and presents to getting the kids up and off to school, going to work, getting supper before going out to a meeting. The whole "WooHoo it's my birthday!" becomes just another day.

This year, I had the most marvelous birthday! It all started Saturday when it became clear to me Papa Bear and my dear heart-daughter Alicia had been conspiring together to give me a special time. My most favorite birthday meal is Hooters. Seriously, I DO go there for their hot wings! And for the crab legs, and shrimp and oysters too. So, off to Hooters we all went. Well, Alicia and her family went in their van, Papa Bear and I rode the motorcycles over..Yippee Skippee!

Later that evening, Papa and I went over to our oldest daughters house for a visit and I got to spend some time with two of my grandkids...Yippee Skippee!

Tuesday night, as I lay sound asleep in my bed, the phone rang. Now, everyone knows if the phone rings that late at night, something is wrong. Nope, I was wrong, it was my son Ben calling. He wanted to be the first one to wish me a happy birthday...Yippee Skippee!

Yesterday was my actual birthday and boy oh boy was it great! It started in the morning with my daycare children bringing me cards. My mom and her daycare came over for a visit and brought me a gift. Not just any gift either, it is a singing and dancing bear from Menards (my most favorite store in the whole wide world). It sings the Menards jingle and is absolutely adorable. When I logged onto Facebook, I had gobs and gobs of Happy Birthday wishes (my heart was so filled with happiness). Last night was an ambulance meeting and the whole crew sang Happy Birthday to me, that was just so very sweet of them. After the meeting, we stopped at Alicia and Joe's for a bit and they gave me a gift that fits perfectly between our two families, they couldn't have picked out anything better. AND, I got to spend time with my two heart-grankids...Yippee Skippee!

Tonight, when I get off work, I am going to town to spend time with my foster daughter and my two foster grandkids...Yippee Skippee!

All in all, I think I can say this birthday has been one to rival the birthdays of days gone by. No, there wasn't a party with balloons and cake and presents galore. What there was is way better. This year, I really felt the love.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The Big Ten ~1 and 2~

Last week I started a short series on the Ten Commandments. I'll be covering a few of them each week. This week are numbers 1 and 2.

#1 There is one God
We worship one God. God made our world and each one of us. He wants us to know He loves us and He will always be with us. There's really not a whole lot to say on this one...ONE GOD, that's all you need to remember.

#2 No false idols
Should we worship more than one God? No, two is too many, one of them must be an idol because there is only ONE GOD. It's ok if you have a cross, that's a reminder. It's a symbol. It's NOT ok if you worship that cross.

I'm gonna show my age here a little and let you know that back in the day, I was a huge Hulk Hogan fan. (You can't see it, but I'm flexing my ripped muscles right now) I was glued to the TV every Sunday night to watch wrestling...'cause we all know how real it is. I lived and breathed Hulk-o-mania. I was definately a Hulk-o-maniac! I think my obsession was on the side of idol worship. Could the Hulkster help me in my time of need? Could he comfort me, heal me, teach me? (Well, he did teach me how to do some great poses in the mirror, but you know what I mean)

Anything we put more importance on in our life then the Lord, is most likely an idol. It is all too easy to find ourselves busy busy busy going and doing in our everyday life. Are these things keeping us going and doing pushing time with the Lord out of the way? At the end of the day, are you able to look back and know you spent time with HIM? If not, then you may be placing more importance on the 'stuff' of life than you are with God. Remember, there is only ONE GOD, things that get in the way of your relationship with Him may be false idols.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

My friend, the author!

I look forward to the mail lady each day. Her arrival in front of my house means there is the chance of excitement when I open my mailbox. Who knows what it might be; a seed catalog, a Boy Scout magazine, the latest from LTD, maybe a letter from a friend or family member far away. The possibilities are endless. I even have a friend who raises chickens and each spring brings a whole lot of chirp chirp chirping to the Post Office as her little chicks arrive.

Yesterday was one such day of excitement. Yesterday, my autographed copy of Earth's End arrived! My dear friend, Kim Curley, is a published author and I am so very happy for her. Kim's story, Faith: An Apocalyptic Story, is one of eight stories in this book.

I'll be honest with you, this type of book would not be something I would normally read. That said, I sat down with my book and a glass of water and started to read Kim's story. Wow! I couldn't put it down! It isn't a real long read, I was able to do it during nap time. The problem I ran into was not wanting to put it down, and at the same time drinking a HUGE glass of water. I thought I was going to tinkle my pants by the time I read the last line. I am anxiously looking forward to reading the other seven stories.

Shameless plug

You can click right here and you will be linked to Earth's End on Amazon. Don't let the picture on the cover fool you, this is a wonderful read.

You might even be able to go to your local library and request a copy.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Frugal Tips

As I searched around the internet this morning, with my cup of fake coffee in hand, I came across some tips on being frugal from

Use what you already have. Not buying something is always cheaper than buying something. Look around your house. Do you have another item that will accomplish the same purpose? Can you engineer a solution out of materials you already own?

Borrow items from friends and neighbors. In many situations, you do not need to own an item, you simply need to use it occasionally. If you have a reputation as a good borrower (i.e. returning items on time and in good repair), you will be able to borrow many items from your less frugal neighbors and friends. For example, unless you are an avid camper, you will only use a tent a few times a year. Don't buy one, borrow one from the boy scout leader in your Church.

Use public transportation. You will save gasoline and wear on your vehicle. If it is possible, eliminating your vehicle entirely is an excellent cost saving measure. Or, if you live in Podunk like I do, car pool.

Cook your own food. Restaurants are expensive because you pay for service, ambiance, and space to eat. Cooking your own food also allows you to customize recipes for maximum savings. If you have the space, gardening provides even greater cost savings when combined with cooking your own food.

Avoid name brands. Famous brands are usually more expensive. There are often cheaper, store-brand alternatives that may be of the same or superior quality.

Fix broken items. Often repairs are as simple as a paperclip or some glue or a coat of paint. Even if repairs require tools, it may be cheaper to invest in the tools for future repairs.

Replace only what you need to replace. You can buy a kit to refill your ink cartridge instead of buying a new ink cartridge every time yours runs out. You can buy a new wheel instead of replacing your stroller.

Buy items that are reusable. In the long run, throwing something away and repurchasing it many times will usually be more expensive than buying one durable item. A good example is disposable vs. cloth diapers.

Comparison shop. Compare different brands and packaging sizes of the same product. Sometimes a larger container will be cheaper per ounce. Compare prices between stores. Rarely will one supermarket have the best price on everything. With large purchases such as cars, savings can be even more substantial by comparison shopping.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

The Big Ten

I will be doing a Wednesday series on The Ten Commandments, or as I like to call them, The Big Ten. I hope you enjoy.

When I was growing up, my folks had tons of rules, and most of them didn't make sense to me.

"Stop and look both ways before crossing the road."
My friends were on the other side having I had time to stop and look BOTH ways. Besides, we live in Podunk, it's not like a lot of cars are on our street.

"Eat everything on your plate."
Even the the carrots? Are you serious??

"Make your bed."
I'm just going to mess it up again.

"Clean your room, don't smoke, be home by curfew..."

At the time, I didn't see a need for their rules other then they were a pain in my rear. Now that I'm older, I see they were there to keep me safe, healthy and learning to be responsible.

Just about anywhere we go in life, there's gonna be rules: home, work, school, even in play. Anyone play basketball? You have rules. Same with soccer, baseball, NASCAR and even Go Fish. I take care of children and we're pretty big into Chutes and Ladders and Candyland. Even my little 3 and 4 year olds understand there are rules.

The Sky is blue, the grass is green and rules exist. It's just a part of life.

What I'm going to tell you about The Big Ten isn't exactly word for word what the bible says. I'm going to tell it a little more simple, but hopefully it will be easier to remember.

The Big Ten

1. There is one God
2. No false idols
3. Watch your words
4. Remember the Sabbath
5. Honor your mom and dad
6. Don't kill
7. Don't commit adultery
8. Don't steal
9. Don't talk about others
10. Don't get the 'gimmies'

Next Wednesday I will start discussing these more in depth with you. I hope you are able to stop by and join me on this journey.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Blue and Gold Banquet

One of the many hats I wear is temporary Cub Master for our local Cub Scouts. I say temporary as I am already Scout Master for the Boy Scouts. I only stepped in to help fill the position and help the Pack out for a few months. While serving as Cub Master, I was given the opportunity to host the Blue and Gold Banquet yesterday...what a great time!

The Pack has some wonderful leaders in place who stepped up and helped get the setting up and decorating done.

Like any good function, it started with a potluck meal...MmmMmmm...I sure love a potluck meal! Somehow, the table I was sitting at went first (golly, I wonder how that happened).

Each Den performed a skit before receiving their awards. Is there anything more cute then nervous little boys talking in front of a crowd of people?

All in all, it was a great day. I think everyone walked away having a good time and encouraged in their Scouting path.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Sparky for Cancer!

I would like to introduce all of you to an incredible young man. Dan Knapp is the kind of man we would all love to have as a son...or son-in-law.

I met Dan many many years ago at Ingersoll Scout Reservation while camping there with my Boy Scouts. He went by Sparky then, and believe me, he lived up to his name! Dan was only 12 (I think) at the time but already serving in a leadership role. I've had the honor of watching him grow up over the years, grow into a caring young man who isn't afraid to step way outside the box. Because of this, he relates well with young people, helping to spread a positive message to them.

You may be wondering why I am singing the praises of Dan today, well, let me tell you. He is once again stepping outside that box to help others. He is raising money for childhood cancer by agreeing to have his head shaved.
Here are a few pictures of Dan (Sparky) and some of his wild hair-do's.

In case you are wondering, no, he isn't some kind of weirdo. Well, not in a bad way anyway.
Dan in unselfishly giving each and every one of us an opportunity to help others. Please click on this link to help children with cancer.
Thank you so much for not only taking the time to read this blog post, but for also helping those who are unable to help themselves.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Busy Pinning

Man oh man oh man! I have discovered the world of Pinterest!

I must admit it did take me a little bit to get the hang of it...actually, I asked a few people who set me on the right path to understanding. Once this happened, I find I can't get enough of it. I was warned this would happen but I didn't listen. Listen to me people, if you are not already on Pinterest, be warned, you WILL get addicted!

Here is my shameless plug to join me

Thursday, April 5, 2012

It's Maundy Thursday!

Today is Maundy Thursday. I am looking forward to going to church this evening and taking part in Communion. It's a sacrament I always enjoy, but Maundy Thursday and Easter Communion seem to hold a special place in my heart. Here is the link to my Maundy Thursday post from last year.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Milk and Eggs

Here’s proof that husbands do listen to their wives.

This is a story which is perfectly logical to all males:

A wife asks her husband, "Could you please go shopping for me and buy one carton of milk, and if they have eggs, get 6".

A short time later the husband comes back with 6 cartons of milk.
The wife asks him, "Why did you buy 6 cartons of milk?"

He replied, "They had eggs."
**This is an email I received from my dad that made me giggle right out loud!**

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

April Declutter

I had mentioned earlier about a declutter calendar I have been following. I just can't hardly believe how much I've gotten done just by following it daily.

In case you are interested in starting along, you can click here for April's calendar. Honestly, doing one chore each day will soon have your home almost decluttering itself!

On another note, I must once again hang my head in shame as I admit to homemaker failure. Papa Bear was gone for two weeks and in his absence, my kitchen was spotless! Dishes done after every meal...AND put away. Table kept cleaned off. Floors mopped every day.

And then Papa came home...and the day he came home my counter and table looked like they belonged in a hoarder house! What's up with that? I so wish I was one of those women who keep a spotless home at all times. I would love to not cringe when someone stops by for a visit un-announced. I'd also love to be rich and never have to work again, but I don't see that happening either.