Monday, July 19, 2010

Spill, Fill and Faint!

Remember Spill, Fill and Thrill? Well here is what my first little planter looked like in early April. She really has really put down deep roots!

Just look at her now! She has become a little overgrown and Miss Lavender has taken up more room than her fair share! She needs to be pruned back a bit. The petunias have just about given all they can give. I'm going to try to cut them way back and see If I can get some fall flowers.

"I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself, it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. "

Remember what promise this little planter showed? Even though I faithfully watered or almost faithfully got hot....real hot!

Now she definitely needs some attention! She is leggy, (I wish I was) and some of the little plants have served me all they can serve. It's time to replenish and revive! Often when I've served all I can, I need some reviving! The basil has been oh so good and I have used it weekly!

"But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Isaiah 40:31

Don't you just love that verse? It was one of the first verses I learned. How many times the Father has graciously picked me up, dusted me off and renewed my strength to try again....and succeed!

Tomorrow I'm going to post how I changed up my planters and what I've learned from my flowerbeds this year. I love to garden, it's just been so hot. We are praying for some afternoon showers, but we haven't seen any this week!

Hilltop Blessings,

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Weeds and Fruit

Proverbs 24:30-34
"I went past the field of the sluggard, past the vineyard of the man who lacks judgment; thorns had come up everywhere, the ground was covered with weeds, and the stone wall was in ruins. I applied my heart to what I observed and learned a lesson from what I saw. A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man."

Yesterday, I observed the field of my family. We had a lot of weeds growing in our hearts. We were a bit unkind to one another. Some were taking liberties that were not permitted and I had grown lazy in my training. It was time to weed!

Since we have had a lot of rain lately, weeds had taken over our garden! Isn't it great when God shows similarities in the natural realm that touch the core of your heart? We got out to the garden early this morning before it was too hot to work. Some were happier than others, and some felt it was too much work, but together we were able to dig, tear and pull out the weeds!

It felt so good to look back and see some progress. It didn't take long with all of us working together to see some real change. Change also began to slowly appear on faces! Smiles and words of encouragement for one another began to flow! A little work seems to move out the uglies!

Hidden in the weeds we found some treats. God began to show me, that just because we had let some things go didn't mean that there wasn't any fruit. We all want fruit in our lives. Just because we mess up as wives or mothers or friends, doesn't mean that everything is bad! It's so easy to look at one situation and think that EVERYTHING is terrible! No dear one, there is still some good fruit hidden amongst the weeds. He loves us and makes sure to show us our faults and then reveal the good fruit that He was growing all along! Sometimes, we need to ask our Heavenly Father to give us eyes to see the fruit that He is growing in us!

We have cantaloupe! One lone little melon hidden in the weeds! There are some starts of others, but this one is actually doing something! I'm so excited! We've never had one grow before. I'm not even sure when it's supposed to be picked. I'm sure we'll figure it out. Did I ever tell you that I wasn't raised on a farm or have gardening experience? None, nada, not any experience! I'm more of your fair weather type gardener, I like to start big and then kind of fade into the cool of my home when it gets hot and dry. This year I have committed to sticking this thing out! That means that when all of my corn died, I didn't give up! Surely perseverance will pay off!

I have determined that plants that are watered and weeded regularly will grow better and bear more fruit. Isn't that interesting....if we water our spirit with the washing of the water of the Word of God, we bear more fruit. If we address sin in our hearts, we bear even more fruit!

Thank you Lord for revealing your truths to us today!

Hilltop Blessings,

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Some Yummy Breakfast Recipe's

I get up early with my husband to make his breakfast. To be honest, I'm not an early morning kind of gal. When we first married, it was the only time we would see each other until bedtime, because he was in school. I would make breakfast for him and then we would read a devotional written for newly married couples.

We did this until I had our first baby. At that point, he had to fend for himself until I could get my wits about me. The one thing we have never stopped doing is to pray with each other in the morning. That morning prayer has helped us to forgive each other so many times. It's just too hard to hold hands and pray with someone if you're mad!

Anyway, back to breakfast. Since my man eats and leaves most mornings before the children are up, I've come up with some breakfasts that can be made quickly and then eaten at different times. I certainly am not up for eating at 6:15 am! When we were first married, I was given a packet of recipes that were all 9x13 breakfasts. I have used these for years and adapted them to meet the taste buds in our home! You do the same!

Both of these recipes can be made the night before and reheated in the morning. If you are industrious, you can make them early and still have them early. I often make Cinnamon Toast Cake on Saturday mornings. You can also freeze them in individual serving portions.

Here are a couple of Recipes for you to enjoy. I will say that I use freshly milled wheat, if you don't have freshly milled flour, don't worry use what you have. Whole wheat is better, but don't get stuck, just use what you have and serve your family lots of love with it!

Pancakes In A Pan
(This recipes keeps me from flipping pancakes at the stove for what seems like eternity!)

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 T. baking powder
3 T. raw sugar
1 1/2 t salt
2 eggs
41/2 melted butter, oil or coconut oil
1 1/3 cup milk

Preheat oven to 375. Measure flour, sugar, salt and baking powder into a large bowl and mix. Put milk, egg and melted butter or oil together in a small bowl and blend. Pour egg mixture into flour mixture and stir. Batter will be slightly lumpy. Place batter in a 9 x 13 baking pan (spray or grease it first). You can sprinkle the batter with pieces of cooked bacon or sausage if desired before cooking. Bake at 375 for 20-25 minutes or until golden and pick comes out clean. Cut into squares and serve warm with butter and syrup if desired. This is easy to reheat in the microwave. Enjoy!

Cinnamon Toast Cake

2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup raw sugar
2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup oil
1 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
Softened Butter
Cinnamon and Sugar mixed together

Heat oven to 350. In a medium bowl combine the dry ingredients. In a medium size bowl mix the oil with the milk and vanilla. Hand mix the dry ingredients ingredients into the wet mixture. Spread batter in a greased 9 x 13 pan. Bake 20 -25 minutes. When it comes out of the oven, spread with butter all over the top, then sprinkle with the cinnamon and sugar. Pop under the broiler for a minute or so until the top is bubbly. Be sure to watch closely so it doesn't burn!

I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as we have. More than anything, I pray that you enjoy cooking and serving your family lots of love. I'm writing this just as I have spoken very sternly with three little boys today. This is one of "those" training days. I think it's time for mama to come up for air and breathe a minute, before I go back into the trenches. The garden needs weeding. Looks like we can all work out our frustrations together! God bless each and every one of you.

I pray that you would know that He loves you and that you are precious in His sight!
Hilltop Blessings,