Monday, November 29, 2010

Two Holiday Recipes

Cranberry Bread

Serves 8
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more for pan
2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan
1 cup packed light-brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup whole milk
1 bag (12 ounces) cranberries
1 tablespoon turbinado sugar, for topping (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees; butter and flour a 9-by-5-inch loaf pan (8-cup capacity), and set aside. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt; set aside. In a medium bowl, combine butter, egg, and milk. Add wet mixture to dry mixture, and whisk to combine; fold in cranberries.
Pour batter into prepared pan; sprinkle top with turbinado sugar, if desired. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of loaf comes out clean, about 1 hour and 15 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack; let bread cool 30 minutes. Invert onto rack, then immediately turn right side up to cool completely.

I have extra cranberries to use up and I remember this bread recipe I make every year. Enjoy!

If you love casseroles and Thanksgiving, you'll love this one!

Turkey and Stuffing Bake
(comments and suggestions from my friend, Kristin)

1 Jar (4.5 ounces) sliced mushrooms
1/4 cup Butter or Margarine
1/2 cup diced celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 & 1/4 cups Ranch Dressing
2/3 cups water
3 cups Seasoned Stuffing mix (I just used Stovetop Stuffing)
1/3 cup sweetened dried cranberries (I used a whole bag because I like
3 cups coarsely shredded cooked turkey (about 1 pound, i went to the
deli and found just regular turkey and asked them to slice it in
between half and inch to 3/4 of an inch thick and two slices cut like
that were perfect. I just pulled it apart when i got hope to give the
shredded affect. Either do that or you can go to boston market and get
turkey from them.)

Drain mushrooms, reserving the liquid for later; set aside. Melt
butter over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Add celery and onion;
saute for 4 minutes or until soft. Remove from heat and stir in 1/2
cup ranch dressing, water and reserved mushroom liquid, mix well. Stir
in stuffing mix and cranberries until thoroughly moistened. Combine
Turkey, Mushrooms and remaining 3/4 cup dressing in a SEPARATE bowl,
mix well; spread evenly in a 8-inch baking dish. Top with stuffing
mixture. Bake @ 350F for 40 minutes or until bubbly and brown.
makes 4-6 servings.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy THANKSgiving!

This is my last chance to have internet until Monday, Nov. 29.
Have a wonderful day and time with family and enjoy all the wonderful food, make good memories and then blog about them so I can enjoy reading all about it next week :)
Lots of Love,

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


It's almost Thanksgiving, which is good because I stink at posting things I'm thankful for. Doesn't help that we don't have internet at our house yet...

Thankful for generous friends who helped us move, brought us meals and are continually offering us help with whatever we would need.

Also thankful that tomorrow is my last day of work for the week and we will be off through Sunday. And my parents come on Thursday and we'll work on painting, finshing unpacking, hanging pictures, Mom and I can work on our window boxes and fun projects...will be a great time!!

Thankful for Jesus and the gift he's given us of salvation through his death on the Cross. That is the biggest and best gift of all!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

It's Done!!!

We own a house!!!
Can't believe how well it all went and fast too. Very thankful!!
Now on to moving - woo hoo!!!
Thanks for praying and for the encouraging words :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Pray for Us!

Closing and move-in is tomorrow and the closing has already been delayed 4 hours due to miscommunication between the bank and title company....
Pray for us not to be stressed, for things to go smoothly and for all the moving to go quickly! I'm SO ready to be done!!!
Thank you!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Thankful for Ethiopia

Today I am so thankful for Ethiopia.
November 7 was Orphan Sunday ( and our church had a presentation and Orphan focus both in the a.m. and p.m. service and it was so awesome. Just to understand that we are adopted by God and grafted into His family through Jesus and also understanding our call to love and care for the fatherless in this same way.

There is an adoption ministry at our church and there are several families adopting (one from South Korea) and a few from Ethiopia which includes Joe's brother and sister-in-law. Don and Sara are hoping to bring home a little boy (or twins!) in 2011. We are so thrilled to be adding another little Jones to the bunch -it will be perfect timing with our little one - they will be cousins and besties, I just know it!!

I just wanted to share with you guys a link to order a shirt to support their adoption - they are great shirts, so comfortable - I wear mine all the time.
Another exciting piece of news is that they received a matching grant, where if they raise $5,000, they receive another $5,000 from an organization! I'm so excited about this - that will be a huge help to them!! So if you are wanting to give in this way, here is a link to that as well or you can email me for more info too. I'm just so excited to share this with you and so thankful for this country where my little nephew will come from and for Don and Sara as they bring this little one into their home.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Thankful for Grace Church

Ok - so I was thinking, what am I thankful for today and I thought: Grace and the people there and then I thought, shoot, I'm totally copying Sari...oh well :)

Why I love Grace Church:
It's such a unique place. It feels like a family, even as it grows. And the youth group has been so wonderful and welcoming. We just love those kids so much. I feel like a half mother, half sister to like 30 girls :) :)
It is the first church that I have ever been at long term where my dad wasn't the pastor and that was hard at first, but now I can't really picture being anywhere else.
Everyone is so generous. With their time, talents, treasure, everything and they are always offering one of those things in our direction, whether for youth group needs or for us personally.
We are just so grateful - God has been so good to lead Joe's family there 18 or 19 years ago and to keep Joe and I there through college and now.
Our Marriage Builders Group last year

The fam outside the church

Friday, November 12, 2010

Thankful for Friends

Ok, so here's a little photo tribute to "friends." I realize it's leaving a lot of people out, but it's what I was able to grab off of facebook fast :)
I feel so very blessed to have friends from so many walks of life - friends that I share a lot of past memories with, get together with occasionally or regularly, see at work, chat on the phone with, see at reunions once a year, email or message here and there or throughout the day or week :)... All of you are so special to me and have impacted me greatly! LOVE YOU FRIENDS!! :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hooray for the House!!

Sorry for not posting the thankful posts (Sari), but I just got an email and have to share my thankfulness!!
We were approved for our loan and are good to go for our November 18 closing!!! Thank you Lord!! We are so excited and thankful and cannot wait to move into our new little place :)

Saturday, November 6, 2010

23 Weeks!

How far along? 23 weeks!

How am I feeling? Good! had a bad cold, but am on the mend and feeling pretty normal.

Movement: Getting a lot more regular and normal feeling to me. I think I saw movement from the outside for the first time yesterday. Not entirely sure but my stomach isn't known to move on its own!

Doctor’s Appointment? Had one yesterday - it was confirmed that March 4 is my due date and that everything from the appt and from my ultrasound looks great. PTL!

Workouts? I was walking Molly this a.m. just around the block and found a halloween candy bag of M&M's in my pocket and naturally started eating them. Then a lady ran by me and I'm laughing to myself...oh the life and norms of a pregnant lady... :)

Sleep? Sleeping ok without the cold. Can't really sleep on my back at all anymore. So I'm doing side sleeping with a body pillow mostly

Weight Gain? I think I'm around 10-12 lbs since maybe 10-12 weeks since that was my lowest weight point.

Baby Preparation? Not much, just trying to get ready to move!

Likes/Dislikes? Craving snack pack jello, soft pretzels and turkey sandwiches and fruit and juice still too

Milestones: Baby is over a pound and over 10 inches long!!

With all that said, I'm thankful today for this little one. Took us a little while to get to this point and it's just made us all the more thankful to be here. We know and trust that God is in control of this little life and ours and everyones. We just want to rest in that and know that no matter what happens, He will see us through it.

22 week pics

23 week photos - event Friday night at Hotel Arista

Friday, November 5, 2010

Thankful for...Parents

Was at my boss's dad's funeral today. He was 87 and had lived a very full life, but it's never easy to say goodbye.
Just made me thankful for my parents. My dad was diagnosed with Leukemia when I was 6 years old, it's crazy just thinking how different life would have been without him. I'm so thankful the Lord choose to heal him and that he's been able to raise me and love me for the past 26 years and shepard his churches and love the body of Christ for the past 31 years.
Feel very blessed and thankful for their influence in my life.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

November = Thankful

A friend of mine is posting things she is thankful for each day and encouraged her friends to do the same...So here I go.

I am stressed with house, loan and moving stuff - it is becoming very overwhelming. And I'm very tired with working these 10 hour + days and not having many evenings to recover and not getting enough sleep for what I need.
So with that said...I am off tomorrow (the only perk of working four-10 hour days...)
and I'm so thankful to have Thursday to be with Joe, sleep in (hopefully), pack up more, figure out any remaining loan details and cuddle on the couch with Molly who is staying with us for 2 weeks while my parents are out of the country.

*Also, could you pray for safety for my parents as they travel and that despite the fact that my dad will be teaching for a week, that it will be a restful and renewing time for them since the last two weeks have been really crazy for them with three deaths of my dad's church people. So that not only meant 3 funerals for my dad, but three personal losses - just a big toll on them physically and emotionally.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010


Well, we had a great (but quick) weekend with my parents making applesauce - a year's supply!! :) It's SOOOO good - thankful to have a large sweet corn and applesauce supply, especially as we are moving into our house soon and we will be able to store it all!

Here are some photos documenting the day (which includes cutting apples, boiling them, put them through the squeez-o - Joe and Dad's job, then putting them in cans and then boiling the cans in a canner to seal them. Wow! :) Went pretty fast with four people and was enjoyable!