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Hi Friends, I am over at Dreambook Design today sharing the recipe for these delicious little handfuls of fall. Be sure to head over there to get the recipe and take a peek around. I am pinching myself that I am sharing a recipe on Adrianne’s beautiful space, I have been a forever reader of hers. Enjoy my loves!

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My boy.

My firstborn boy.

He is amazing, brilliant, smart, loving, honorable, and so hard working.

But we have yet to find his thing. The thing that sets his little heart on fire.

And this boy, he is so serious, seeing him smile hasn’t been an easy task lately.

So you better believe when we found his thing. The thing that set him ablaze. The thing that made him smile for days after he did it. Well, you better believe we were all about it. All about seeing that smile.

Kids need to experience things that they love, things that they are good at. They need to feel good about themselves. The need to find something that they can be confident in.

And this boy, he needed that.

And would you believe it was his bicycle that brought him that happiness.

We took him Monday night to the local BMX track.

We brought his helmet, rented his bike and gear, and with a nervous excited smile he laced up his shoes.

We were under the lights, getting eaten alive by bugs, but watching our boy shine. He smiled, again and again. He was fearless, and he was good. He was amazing, and more importantly he was happy.

And as parents, isn’t that all we want for our kids?

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It’s 9 am and I am still in my pajamas.

The baby is napping, I have two boys sick in bed, and my wild one is curled up on the couch in between a state of dreaming and watching television.

The house smells of pumpkin candles and bleach.

Dishes are washed, bathroom is scrubbed, laundry is going, but the pajamas are still on.

Life has been a roller coaster lately. So much do and go and not enough rest and refresh.

It’s kind of funny how God uses even the things that seem to be a nuisance, like kids that are sick, or bathrooms that are dirty, for his good.

I didn’t have to rush off to take kids to school today, didn’t have to make lunches and breakfasts, didn’t have to wake them as they were sleeping and rush them out the door.

I did get to rest, I got to read my bible and clean the house.

All the while taking my time.

No hurry up, no it’s time to go, no rushing, no yelling.

Just the smell of bleach and pumpkin candles, and something God commanded us all to do..

Rest.

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Currently I am sitting in a quiet house watching my favorite guilty pleasure burning my favorite pumpkin candle and enjoying my clean kitchen.

Well I guess that I shouldn’t call it my kitchen, because yes, we are still living at my mommas house. But you know what, it truly takes a village to raise some babies, am I right, and I am nothing but grateful for all of the help.

Anyone else totally slightly freaking out about the Ebola situation? I find myself googling like crazy. Which leads me to my next point, a lot of the time I can’t help but believe that google is from the devil? Yea? Maybe I am exaggerating slightly but start googling why your toe hurts and you’re going to go to bed thinking you are dying of cancer and west Nile virus mixed with a little Lyme Disease or something crazy like that. (By the way, if you can’t tell, I’m no doctor and I totally pulled all of that out of my back pocket.)

Can I just mention how excited I am for this movie?

Usually whenever I see previews for a movie that I am really excited about that is based on a book I give in and swoop up the book but then kick myself because the movie never keeps up with it. Like this book that I sobbed through. I have yet to see the movie though, but you better believe I will be driving around to all the different redbox locations until I find one that isn’t sold out.

Currently I am feeling a little like Olivia Pope because I love nothing more then to unwind with a small glass of red wine in the biggest glass possible (does that even make sense?)

Well friends, enjoy your weekend, I know that I will because I get a whole two uninterrupted days with my husband, sans kiddos, all of them, you better believe that I will be snapping as many pictures as possible so be sure to follow along if you would like.


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The breakfast sandwich.

During my third pregnancy I wanted to eat eggs and only eggs, specifically eggs in the form of a breakfast sandwich.

I think it helped that at that time we had backyard chickens and were inundated with eggs.

Backyard chickens are good for that, but bad for morning sickness (dirty little animals). But now, since I am not going to be experiencing that terrible pregnancy symptom anymore, I say bring to me all the chickens and all of the fresh eggs. There really isn’t anything better than a fresh egg friends.

But back to the story at hand, the breakfast sandwich (specifically this breakfast sandwich) quickly became my jam and I am pretty sure 30 of the 40 pounds were gained because of them.

This is a simple but indulgent morning staple and I challenge you to not want one every single morning.

Enjoy.

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Breakfast Sandwich

Ingredients

1 Bagel of you choice

1 Egg

1/4 Cup Cream Cheese

butter

3 Green Onions diced

2 Slices Tomato

Salt

Pepper

Garlic Powder

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Breakfast Sandwich

Directions

Begin by toasting your bagel. While your bagel is toasting warm a small frying pan over medium heat with a small amount of butter. As the pan is heating up, because that is the trick to a good over easy egg, mix green onions and cream cheese together in a small bowl. Once pan is heated crack the egg into it. Sprinkle generously with pepper, salt, and garlic powder. While egg is cooking assemble bagel. Smear both sides with cream cheese and place two slices of tomato on it. Once egg is almost finished cooking flip over for just a second or two. Gently remove egg and place on bagel.

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Carefully place the top of the bagel on, you don’t want to break the yolk until you are ready to eat. Enjoy immediately, as this is best when still nice and warm.

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//original recipe and photography

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That is a title that I never thought I would write.

I would love to home school.

Like really.

But I was blessed with two boys born extremely close together with two extremely different learning styles. One who loves to learn, one who loves anything but learning. Therefore, even homeschooling for preschool didn’t seem like much of an option. Not to mention I was young and naive and didn’t really want to.

But my second set of babes are much slower paced. My daughter watches my older two and remembers nothing but seeing them do nightly homework, so to her, learning is something exciting, something that the big boys do, so of course, it’s something she wants to do as well.

We are still between homes, and we are using this time wisely and trying to pay off as much debt as possible, so finding a preschool is the last of our priorities. But, I see her yearning to learn and I see her ability to listen and to be taught. So I couldn’t dare push that aside.

As I mentioned, my oldest doesn’t like to learn. Although I should clarify that, he loves to learn but he doesn’t love to be taught. Give him something hands on and he will figure it out, he will take it apart, put it back together, and then take it apart again. He has more common sense than most people my age, and I am pretty sure he could survive in the wilderness if he had to. But book work isn’t his jam, so reading never came real naturally to him.

After working with his school and working with him at home I decided it was time to try and find something that could start him fresh and teach him the right way from the beginning. After much research and looking at a lot of home school blogs I found this
book. So on a whim and with nothing to lose I ordered it. I mean really, it’s crazy cheap so you don’t have much to lose. I got it and started it right away with my second grader, and while the lessons at the beginning are extremely simple for him, they are teaching him the right skills that he was lacking. We are moving along great in the book and he doesn’t mind doing his reading lessons as part of his nightly homework at all.

So, back to my preschooler. The one who is crazy eager to learn. Well, mixed in with our practice of scissors, colors, crafts, and drawing I decided to just try out doing lessons with her. I can’t even describe to you how amazed I was when I started. Each time she sits and does her lesson and actually looks forward to it. And because the book starts out with really simple lessons and builds upon those, she is understanding and keeping up. Now, do I think she will be reading before kindergarten, honestly, I don’t know. But I do know that it can’t hurt, and that young readers need to be immersed with early education in order to succeed. And I can already tell that this is a great resource, and I strongly recommend adding this to your home school curriculum, or even as an additional resource if you have a struggling reader.

//while there are affiliate links in this post, I was not compensated in any way. This is an honest opinion that I wanted to write because I truly love this resource.

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It’s almost October, that means it’s almost time for everything pumpkin.

Am I right?!

I have a confession.

I don’t count down the days for the Pumpkin Spice Latte to come to Starbucks like most people.

I love pumpkin.

Pumpkin smells, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies (be gentle with that one it was one of my first recipes) pumpkin candles, pumpkin soap, you get it right!?

But pumpkin spice lattes aren’t my jam.

I do however love Starbucks pumpkin cream cheese muffins. But you know what happened? They went and made them all healthy this year. Insert sad face emoji. I mean seriously, it’s like reinventing the wheel here, why make something delicious, different. Can you tell I was a little upset?

So I went for it.

I took my beloved pumpkin bread recipe and transformed it into these delicious pumpkin muffins with spiced cream cheese frosting.

Friends, they are divine. And if you enjoy pumpkin spice lattes go ahead and pair the two of these, I can only imagine.

Enjoy sweet friends.

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Pumpkin Muffins with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients

1 Cup Coconut Oil

2 Cups Brown Sugar

4 Eggs

3 1/4 Cup Flour

2 Cups Pumpkin Puree

2 Teaspoons Baking Soda

1/2 Teaspoon Salt

2 Teaspoons Pumpkin Pie Spice

for the frosting

2 Cups Cream Cheese

1/4 Cup Brown Sugar

1 Teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice

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Pumpkin Muffins with Spiced Cream Cheese Frosting

Directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large mixing bowl combine dry ingredients. Stir to combine. Add in eggs, oil, and pumpkin pie puree and combine well. Spoon into prepared muffin pan or loaf pan if you prefer a quick bread.

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Place in preheated oven and bake until golden brown on top and toothpick comes out clean when inserted in center, about 40 minutes. Let muffins cool while you mix together frosting ingredients.

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Once muffins are cooled generously top with frosting.

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Store in an airtight container in refrigerator. Recipe makes eight large muffins and one small loaf of bread, two loaves of bread, or eighteen muffins.

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//original recipe and photography

Make me pretty?

I look down from the mirror and see the most beautiful little girl staring up at me. I lift her up and sit her on the counter.

My love, you are beautiful. Mommy can’t make you pretty, you already are.

No I not.

And so it begins.

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I watch as she swipes the eyeshadow over her eyelids and brushes her cheeks with my blush. She doesn’t even know how beautiful she is, and she is only three.The thought of this turns over and over in my head making me want to grab her face and ingrain the knowledge of how beautiful she is deep within her being.

I spent much of my young adulthood with self-image issues. I found my worth from guys and I sought out attention in the form of an eating disorder. These are all real pieces of my story and pieces of me that the Lord has redeemed. But these pieces of my story cannot be a part of hers.

I won’t stand for it.

Everything in me will always make sure everything in her knows how beautiful she is. How God made her and loves every inch of her. That she radiates a beautiful heart and that makes her even more special. Our daughters are being raised in a world that celebrates everything about perfection. But when has perfect ever really been beautiful? Beauty is in seeing His work perfected, His work in our lives and our hearts, and her heart is bursting with His love…

Jesus just fills my heart so much he makes my stomach hurt. I don’t want him to ever come out.

Neither do I baby girl.

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Over the summer I was asked to be a children’s leader at the Bible Study I have been attending.

I couldn’t help but laugh.

Bible study was my alone time. My time to myself, the few quiet hours of adult interaction sans kids. They were now asking me to give that up, to teach even more kids, and on top of that teach kids that weren’t even mine.

I had to think about it.

Right!?

I mean how is one supposed to come to a logical decision when one thinks that the question is seriously insane.

Well, God nudged, do it.

So, I answered a reluctant, yes.

I found that as the summer went on my heart began to soften to the idea and I became genuinely excited. I mean, I would be planting the seed of truth into twenty little people’s hearts. A seed that wouldn’t truly flourish and blossom and produce fruit until much later. But I would be there in the trenches helping these parents show their babies Jesus. And really, what excuse could I come up with that made for better use of my time.

When I was meeting with my teaching leader she warned me that a lot of the time when we say yes to God, we are met with a spiritual battle to keep us from following through. I heard this and tucked it away. It was a truth that I had shared with many that I have mentored along their faith journey, but I figured I would be okay. I knew it was a great possibility but I would be ready.

Friends, my life for the past six months has been in upheaval. Granted it’s amazing things, things I am blessed to even be experiencing, the selling and buying of a home, being the wife of a small business owner, the mama to four little ones, all amazing things, but all things that are being used as pawns in this spiritual battle.

I have felt sort of off the past few weeks but I wrote it off as the chaos of being in between homes. Yesterday morning was something different though. I drove to church and felt something brewing inside of me. As I stood in line to get coffee before service started I felt I might at any given moment become overwhelmed with tears.

As I sucked down the caffeine I thought was needed to pull me out of the funk, I pushed the tears back. I walked inside service and felt strange, almost angry and somewhat annoyed with everything and everyone. I didn’t feel at home, and this was not normal, as my church has been my home for years.

The music proceeded and I sang along, until finally I just closed my eyes and listened.

I need you, Oh I need you. Every hour I need you. My one defense, my righteousness. Oh God how I need you.

The bass from the band pounded in my chest.

I stood there with my head down in silence and suddenly, without any knowledge of it, felt the tears streaming down my face.

He had won.

The battle was real my friends. I was in the middle of it and I finally allowed the Lord to do what he does, to do what he has already done. But this battle is far from over, I still feel it. And while I can try and push it off on the issues with my home closing or living with my parents or being too overwhelmed with my to do list, the truth is, there is a war for our souls. It is a daily battle. One that has already been won, but can continue to happen. So our constant prayer, the song our heart must sing every single day…

I need you, Oh I need you. Every hour I need you. My one defense, my righteousness. Oh God how I need you.

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I don’t know about you but waiting is such a hard thing for me. Being stuck in the unknown, being caught in the in-between, not having answers, all of those are huge anxieties I struggle with.

I mentioned a few weeks back how I was hopefully going to be sharing with you the beautiful story God had written for us regarding our new home. Well, this process has been nothing short of easy. Nothing has been cut and dry, not in the selling of our old home or the buying of this new one. And with each step along the way, it just feels like more and more trouble is being thrown at us.

There have been many times during this situation where I have found myself sitting in my car literally crying out to God to show up. To do something, to fix this, to just show us which path to take and which house was really supposed to be ours.

Wait my child.

That seemed to be his answer every single time.

Wait just a little longer, I am still orchestrating the events for you, there is still something that you are supposed to learn.

I look back at each wait that I have received and in the midst of my anxiousness I see His faithfulness. I see His hands working, and I see what He has done. Not only that, but the results of each and every single wait have been nothing short of beautiful, and even though I am so quick to forget about that beauty, He graciously continues to remind me.

I think the saving grace of this entire situation is that I have his promises to cling to. I know that everything that I am ever given is a good and perfect gift from Him, and that His greater plan will always find a way to work itself out, no matter what is thrown at us along the way.

There is a reason to all of this, and through prayer, I am overwhelmed with His peace. I feel His guided hand and presence.

I feel Him in the wait.

I want you to know that whatever wait you are in, whatever part of your life that is overwhelming you, it’s okay. It’s okay to cry out to him and its okay to feel lost.

It’s okay, because those are the times that He promises that He will be there. That He will be your strength and that He will carry your burdens, and friends, there is no one better to have on your team than the one who already knows what will happen when the wait is finally over.