thehomebakerlife

Growing up, Grandma Stone constantly made cookies. Not exaggerating, some of the best cookies ever, especially warm. They’re thick, but somehow still moist… amazing food goodness. This weekend I made them on my own for the first time ever, and they were a huge success! These are her peanut butter variation with Dove hearts on top.. yummy, but don’t take my word for it. Try the recipe:

STONE COOKIE RECIPE

INGREDIENTS:

1/2 C. Butter (1 Stick)
1 C. Sugar
2 Eggs
2 tsp. Vanilla
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Baking Soda
2 2/3 C. Flour
1 C. Peanut Butter
Chocolate (Hershey Kisses, Dove Promises, etc)

DIRECTIONS:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Beat butter, sugar and eggs together until smooth. Add vanilla, salt and baking soda; mix well. Add flour and mix well. Mixture will be crumbly. Add peanut butter. Pinch into 1″ balls. Roll in sugar, and bake for 12-15 minutes. After baking, place chocolate piece on top. Makes 2-3 dozen.

Personal opinion: I always add a little extra vanilla and cut salt in half. I take them out of the oven at the first sight of cracks in the dough, usually around 12 minutes. I put the chocolates on top, move the cookies to a cooling rack, and then press chocolates further down while half melted to make it look like a wax seal. They’re great warm or cooled. Enjoy!

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I am currently reading through Exodus. I personally love the OT. There are certain viewpoints that I don’t naturally have: I wouldn’t die for my political leaders like King David’s loyal men, my first instinct generally isn’t to fall prostrate, etc. But, as I read the old testament, I am challenged to live a life of honor and respect.

I read through the calling of Moses and the conversation that happened between Moses and God and haven’t been able to move on for two days.

In chapter 3 verse 6, when Moses realized Who was speaking to him through the burning bush, he “covered his face because he was afraid to look at God.” The first thing that stands out is his holy reverence, the fear of the Lord. Then as you read on, it seems as though his holy fear transitions to an unholy fear. He’s protesting and asks “what if…” several times, and finally the Lord gets angry (4:14). God was understanding. He chose to be patient with the questions and doubt. He showed Moses great miracles, turning staffs into snakes, bringing and healing skin disease, and yet Moses still says, “Send anyone else.”

How many times have I argued with the Lord?! How many times have I asked “what if?” What if they think I’m dumb? What if I haven’t heard God correctly? What if it doesn’t go with MY plan? What if, what if, what if.

“What if” is an excuse. It’s an excuse to hold on to fear. It’s an excuse to live of yourself. I want to be filled with that holy fear, reverence for the Lord, to have even the opportunity to cover my face because I am afraid to see his holiness. Thank God He is full of patience and still chose to use Moses. And somehow, He still chooses to use me. Selah.

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Disclaimer: look at the scars on my hand.. barista battle wounds!

I recently found out that I am allergic to my wedding band, specifically the nickel in it. I’ve known since childhood that I have a nickel allergy (it runs in my family, and my genes wanted that trait too, I guess), but my uneducated self didn’t realize there was nickel in my white gold wedding band. I find it especially odd that I’ve worn these rings almost 3 years and haven’t had a problem. Apparently that’s normal – go figure!

So, now we have the option of rhodium plating the band and dealing with the problem again, or we can go for a completely new band. My heart hurts a little due to the significant sentimental value of the ring, but honestly, the itching, swelling, scaly skin and the fact that I can’t wear my ring hurts more. I decided on saving the old ring for our kids to have the option of using it, and we will get a new ring. Life goes on, and now it goes on in platinum!

I sometimes have doubts. I sometimes struggle in my faith. I wonder what I would say to someone when they ask me about a Biblical text that creates controversy in my own heart.

It’s easy to get caught in nit-picking and find things in the Bible that don’t makes sense. I took an Old Testament class in college, and it really messed with me. The professor said things I had never heard before. Some of the things he said fascinated me, other things scared me. I was blown away at how much I hadn’t noticed, or things that I believed that just didn’t make sense to my human mind. For example – How did Adam name every animal? How did the names carry on? What about species we haven’t discovered, did he name those? There are some parts of the Bible that could use more explanation. Instead of explanation – we get faith. In no way am I suggesting ignorance, just a little touch of crazy.

What is faith if not slightly crazy? We have faith in things everyday that seem a little crazy. We have faith when flying – we don’t know the pilot personally, we don’t know if they’ve been properly trained. But we have faith in the airline to not hire a wacko. We trust the plane will stay in the air and continue going quickly enough to defy gravity. We drive our cars in faith that our brakes will work when we need to stop. We have faith in the other drivers to not kill us! How is it that we have such a hard time with faith in God? Hebrews 11:1 defines faith as the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. We weren’t there when God created the world, I didn’t see Him do it, but I have no doubt that He did it. I wasn’t there when He made the sun stand still, when Goliath fell, or when Jesus was resurrected, but my touch of crazy faith helps my belief in things I haven’t seen.

There is a big difference in faith in how accurately the Bible explains facts and stories that make sense in our cultural terminology and understanding and in faith in Jesus Christ. In all honesty, I don’t really care much about how species were named or who wrote the Pentateuch compared to how much I care that Jesus changes lives. Mark 9 has this great story about a man asking for a miracle for his son. Jesus responds saying anything is possible to him to believes. In verse 24 in the Amplified it says, “At once the father of the boy gave [an eager, piercing, inarticulate] cry with tears, and he said ‘Lord, I believe! [Constantly] help my weakness of faith!'” I love the use of the word constantly. It implies that faith can be a constant struggle. It is important to know what you believe and why you believe it, and I suggest you challenge your beliefs so that you will grow in your faith and understanding and grow in your touch of crazy.

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I’ve only been paying for my own laundry detergent for maybe a year and a half, but I was blown away by the prices for something so basic and so necessary. I researched ways to cut cost and found a recipe for HE laundry detergent that is ridiculously cheaper than the cheapest at my superstore. Buying the ingredients that makes several batches was cheaper than your average laundry detergent.

So here’s the recipe:

1 C. Borax
1 C. Washing Soda
1 Bar of Soap (we used laundry soap last time)

Most instructions I found have you grate the bar of soap, but we found that it’s harder to break down such large pieces in the washer. So I recommend cutting it into smaller pieces then throwing it in a food processor.

Use 1 tablespoon of the mixture per load, and voila… clean clothes for less money. And it smells so good!

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