Friday, September 28, 2007

Saturday Photo Scavenger Hunt


This ORIGINAL photo was taken in a small restaurant down in a basement near the city square of Krakow, Poland. The Pierogis were absolutely delicious and were actually served on a yummy bread plate. The best part was that this meal was super cheap when converted to American Dollars.

I dare anyone in the Photo Hunt to also have a picture like this. If you do...leave a comment!

Amish Friendship Bread Starter...The End

Well, Today was the last day of my first round of making Friendship Bread Starter. I added all the necessary ingredients and then I divvied it up into freezer bags. I ended up with far more than the recipe said I would. Hmmm. Those baggies have 1 cup of starter in each and I promptly put those into the freezer for future use.

I then used 1 cup to make my first round of Amish Friendship bread. At first I thought I would make this recipe, but decided against it. I wanted to make something Chris would really like too. I've since tasted the bread and it is just 'okay.' I don't know if I did something wrong or I just don't like the recipe.

I've got plenty of starter in the freezer so I'm hoping it was the recipe and not what I did. ;-) But, hey, being willing to try new things is part of what makes life fun isn't it?? I'll keep plugging along in my journey of bread-baking.

Does anyone have a tip or two on Amish Friendship Bread??

All This Girl Wants is a Cabin in the Woods

It is almost October and Fall is definitely in the air. It is still quite warm here and I find myself wondering if the cool air will ever arrive. Thankfully, it always does and I just can't wait. One thing that always hits me in the fall is the desire to get up and go. I want to see the fall colors and enjoy a good hike in the crisp air. Such a welcome retreat when the heat has been unbearable for months.

In November, Chris, Caleb, and I are going camping with our ever growing circle of friends (We keep having kids!). We'll actually be in tents and sleeping on the ground. Yep, roughing it! This will be Caleb's first overnight camping trip and I know it will be an interesting experience.

One thing that I am really looking forward to sometime in the future is being able to get a nice cabin in the mountains with Chris and Caleb (and whoever has since arrived) and enjoy a FAMILY vacation. I just know it will be lovely bliss. I found this website for vacation rentals where you can plan a family vacation by dealing with the actual owners of cabins, etc. and I thought that was pretty cool. It seems so much more personal. You can search for available rentals in any of the 50 states, including Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean. When you find the rental spot you want to try you can email the owner and go from there. Cool, huh?

Check Them Out and Happy Vacationing!!

This post sponsored by

Random Pictures

I just felt like posting some pictures of my boy today. Also, Chris told me that I haven't posted enough pictures lately. There have been times when people come into his office and they want to see recent pictures of Caleb. Chris then says, "Well, Sarah has a blog! Let me pull it up and I'll show you some pictures.....Hmmmm....Scrolling...scrolling....scrolling...Hmmmm....well, I guess she hasn't put any up lately. I'm sorry." That night I here, "Honey, where are the pictures? I tried to show off your blog and there were no pictures!" TheSe are for you, Honey! Now, go show off my blog!

Here is Caleb in his new jeans and t-shirt. They are HUGE on him and the pants are 12 months. They came with a belt and I had to alter that to make the pants stay on his hips. Caleb is so little around the waist that 6-9 month pants fit him well, but they are too short. What's a Mommy to do?

I was baking that day and sadly also having a bad day for some reason. I was rather grumpy to be honest. The Lord then gave me a boost in mood when I turned around and saw that Caleb was trying to be like me and was wearing one of my oven mitts. All I could do was smile, laugh a little, and forget about why I was so moody.

Here is my couch potato watching his Baby Einstein video. When I left him he was sitting up straight and nice and proper. I guess the video was so good that he had to get more comfortable and enjoy the show.

I (Heart) my Camera

Our family digital camera, a Sony Cybershot, is quite sentimental to us and carries quite a history. It was when I requested a digital camera for Christmas from my Dad that Chris and I told him that we were pregnant with Caleb. Here's how it went:

Me: "Hey Dad! I think a digital camera would be a great Christmas present for us this year!"
Dad: "Really? Hmmmm...I see."
Me: "Yeah, we are going to need to take tons of pictures in a few months."
Dad: "OK."
Me: "Dad? Are you catching what I'm saying?"
Dad: "Yeah, you are making a strong hint for a camera." (He wasn't quite catching the other hint.)
Me: "True.....because....Chris and I are 99.9% sure we are pregnant!"
Dad: (Wide Eyes and Big Grin)

The rest is history.

Needless to say, we got our wonderful camera for Christmas and we have taken tons of pictures. That camera also went on our family trip to Poland this past summer. We filled up a 256 MB Memory stick and half of a 2 GB memory stick on just that trip.

Sometimes, Chris catches me perusing the pictures of Caleb when we were still in the hospital and he was only a couple of days old. He's growing up so fast. Having those pictures right here on my computer is perfect for us and I confess that we don't have very many printed pictures. I am currently on a mission to backup all those precious digital pictures on CD's, though.

Well, the sad side of this story is that not too long after our trip to Poland my darling little boy pulled on the strap to our Cybershot and pulled it crashing to the ground. (Can you hear the funeral music?) The camera that recorded my son's first moments in this world and our trip to Chris' ancestral land is GONE. (Note: I had JUST downloaded a bunch of pictures onto our computer when the camera breathed its last.) Aaaahhhh! Now, I am borrowing a digital camera from Chris' parents until we can make a trip into town to shop for another camera.

There are so many things that I know I can do with my camera when I finally get a good replacement. One thing I've been dabbling in is digital scrapbooking. I confess I'm not very good at it but it sure is fun. I love looking around the web for great scrapbook page ideas . There is so much talent and inspiration out there. The time for dabbling has been quite limited but I think I'm going try again soon. I'll keep everyone posted and perhaps show some pages here.

Anyway, I LOVE my Camera. I don't know what I would do without it...or my borrowed camera....or my soon to have NEW camera. Can you tell??

This is a sponsored post by Ritz

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Reliving my Childhood

When I was kid my absolutely favorite show was Road to Avonlea. Being that I LOVED Anne of Green Gables and Anne of Green Gables - The Sequel, the books and the movies, it was a natural progression to get totally hooked into Road to Avonlea. It takes place in the same charming town of Avonlea and the characters are just as endearing. Some of the characters from the Anne movies pop up in this show too. I am going through all the seasons of Road to Avonlea right now and I remember them like it was just yesterday and I was laying on the floor in my parent's house totally engrossed in this story. I highly recommend this series. Check it out!!

Road to Avonlea Season 1.

Road to Avonlea Season 2

Road to Avonlea Season 3

Road to Avonlea Season 4

Road to Avonlea Season 5

Road to Avonlea Season 6

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

WFMW--Sabbath Candle

A few months ago, Chris realized that we weren't REALLY having a Sabbath in our house. Sunday was the most relaxed day of the week but it was so easy to let a little work here and there creep in and next thing we know we were working on stuff all weekend including on the Sabbath. We have since reclaimed our Sabbath. The first thing we changed was that we started going to church on Saturday nights (a great option at our church). We serve during the first service and then attend the second service. That leaves Sunday completely open. Then we instituted the "Sabbath Candle." This is a candle that stays on our kitchen table but it is only lit on Sundays. Every Sunday morning, assuming we are at home, Chris leads us in a family prayer and we light the candle. The candle then stays lit ALL DAY until we go to bed that night. So, whenever we walk by and see those little flames flickering we are reminded that it is the Sabbath and we know WHO's day it really is.

The Sabbath Candle Works For Me!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Updates from the YMCA...Great Mysteries

I am on week 4 of working out in the weight training section of the YMCA. I am amazed at the differences I am feeling now that I've added weight training to my regimen. The biggest thing is the increase in confidence. I felt really good about my time on the treadmill or the eliptical machine but the weight training boosts me up everytime I achieve a new weight. Oh, and my jeans are talking to me. Yeah! Anyway, I have experienced two great mysteries that pertain to the weight room. I am going to put these questions out there and hope I can get some responses.

1) Why do men walk around like peacocks when they are in the weight room?

2) Why do men have to grunt when they are lifting the weights? (There are some women at my YMCA who lift some pretty heavy weights and they NEVER grunt.)

Anybody have any ideas about these mysteries??

In Other Words

"If we could understand everything God does, then He'd have to be a small god--small enough to fit in our little minds."

~ Randy Alcorn ~
There are plenty of times when I so wish I could understand what God is doing in my life or someone else's. We can see the little steps as we make them, but oh to know the big picture. To be able to step out of this world and to see the grand plan in its entirety. Just about everything would make sense and there wouldn't be anymore wondering or confusion.

I know I thought that when my Mom passed away back in August of 2001 and then to tack on 9/11 just a month later. I kept asking, "Why God? Why?!" I had enough faith to know that everything was happening for a reason but I wanted to know what that reason was. Was that too much to ask? Well, yes it was too much to ask.

If I were given the ability to see all of God's plan laid out, how would God be mighty? How would he be worthy of my worship and adoration? He wouldn't be some awesome God for me to seek after. He would be inside my mind and if he only "fit in our little minds" there would be no reason for me to seek after him.

As long as there are questions unanswered and not understood I will always seek after God. I will pray and ask for wisdom and guidance. I am sure I will always want to know the reason for why certain things have occurred and perhaps I will receive answers here and there but I know that I will never know the full answer until I reach eternity. Until then I will follow my Father and just trust Him because I KNOW he knows best.

Go on over to Joy in the Morning to what other thoughtful ladies are saying.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Friendship Bread Starter Watch...Part 2

After several days of just stirring once a day, Sunday was quite exciting because I got to add things to my Friendship Bread Starter. I added 1 cup milk, 1 cup flour, and 1 cup sugar. (The flour and sugar were mixed together to help prevent clumping of the flour.)

Here we are about to start.

Here we are after all the mixing and stirring. You can already see all the bubbles. It must be working.

Now we embark on a journey of just stirring once a day until Friday. See you then!

Young Dreams

I have started reading Jesus Among Other Gods by Ravi Zacharias. I am not very far into it yet but I was struck by the truth of this statement.

Young dreams may be wild ones, but they are never corrected by ridiculing them. They must be steered by a loving voice that has earned the right to be heard, not one enforced by means of power.

Friday, September 21, 2007


I found this video on and I was brought to tears. I am not a beer drinker, but Budweiser does come out with some awesome commercials and this is by far their best. This commercial was released only once, during Super Bowl XXXVI, as a tribute to New York City after the incidents of 9/11. All I can say is, "WOW!"

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Wait, I Thought That Beanbag Was Mine!

I guess I know where I stand, huh? Notice the blue mouse? That is Eowyn's favorite thing in the whole-wide world. Sometimes I think I have to compete for her affections.

Thankful Thursday

I have to say that Chris and I are so blessed lately in the freezer department. The combination of Angel Food Ministries and the generosity of Chris' Mom has completely filled our freezer. Chris and I know that the first of couple of months of his new career might be a bit lean but the Lord has provided. We will NOT go hungry. That's for sure. Our freezer has NEVER been so full.

I included this picture to give you some perspective. Our freezer is fairly deep.

I wish I could show you everything that is underneath.


Wednesday, September 19, 2007

World Bread Day!

How perfect is this?! I just wrote a post about my passion for baking bread and my new adventures into bread starters and look what I found. I was looking at a great blog called A Year in Bread and I saw a little button and I was intrigued. I did a little Google-ing and here it is.

world bread day '06

More to come!

Adventures in Breadbaking--Friendship Bread Starter

Okay, I LOVE baking bread. It has become my new passion/hobby. I have not bought bread in months. My entire family is loving this new endeavor of mine. Caleb especially loves his PB&J's with homemade bread. Anyway, I am growing more adventurous and I want to stretch my wings. This dreaming is taking me into the world of Friendship Bread. I can't believe it. I NEVER thought I would step into the world of bread that requires a starter. I've already made my first sourdough starter and it is in the fridge waiting for the first batch. Watching that starter form was so much fun that now I'm going to make a Friendship Bread Starter. That one takes 10 days! Today was Day 1. Do you want to join me in this adventure? I'll try to take pictures as we go. Here we are for Day 1.

Here is my entire setup. (Please pardon the less than tidy kitchen table.)
You can even see a little bit of my checklist for the ten day process.
I can't trust myself to remember when to do each step.

And this is what the starter looks like on Day 1 after about 3 hours of fermenting.

9 more days to go!!
I can smell that yummy Friendship Bread already!

Please note that this is the first time I'm doing this with all the successes and probably, failures.

WFMW--Personal Cookbook

One of the best things I have done for the organization of my kitchen is create my personal cookbook. I am sure there are plenty of people out there who do the same thing, but I love it so much that I just had to share. As I read magazines and I see recipes I want to try, I will rip those recipes out and put them in their own little paper protectors and clip them into my own cookbook. It sure beats having a bunch of magazines with dog-eared pages. (Don't tell anyone, but I have some 'hot' recipes too. I took them from a magazine in a doctor's office.)

When it comes to my cooking abilities I would call myself a "Dreamer." I look at recipes and dream about them and I have visions of actually making it in my very own kitchen. Sometimes if I dream long enough I will get the guts up to really making it. I have had great successes and a bit more failures. But, I am learning. My personal cookbook has gotten so big lately because of all my dreaming. It is especially getting fat on my bread recipes. (Ha ha! Catch that carb joke?) Anyway, check out the picture below. The cake recipe on the right is one of those "dream" recipes." I think I might have enough nerve around Christmas.

My Personal Cookbook Works For Me!

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Mr. Grumpy

If I could pick one word to describe Caleb today it would GRUMPY. OH. MY. WORD!! The drama is crazy. Let me explain why. The Doctor put him on a cough medicine for seven days and a steroid for 3 days to help with his Croup (or The Crud as Chris calls it). The doctor warned me that the steroid will make him have a big appetite and affect his mood. Not my boy! He is the most cheerful 14 month old to ever walk this earth. I've had people say so. Surely his mood wouldn't be that bad. HA! Today he was walking through the living room with a toy and he accidentally dropped it. No big deal right? Wrong! He had a complete meltdown as he stood there and looked at his toy. It was almost like he was saying, "I dropped my toy and now I'll never get it back again!! WHAAAAA!!!" Caleb has NEVER been this sensitive. I have a feeling this is going to be a LOOOOOONG 3 days. I'm sorry if I am scarce for that time. At least you now know why. But, then again, I might come here quite often to protect my sanity. ;-)

In Other Words

"They gave our Master a crown of thorns.
Why do we hope for a crown of roses?"

~ Martin Luther ~
This quote by the Father of Protestant Reformation sure is a great reminder to us in the comfortable United States. I know Martin Luther had a good reason to say this. He sure lived in turbulent times and a lot of that turbulence was brought on by himself. Would Luther have done what he did if he always expected a crown of roses from the Lord? I don't think so. He was willing to take a good dose of "suffering" because he knew what he did was right and it honored his Lord.

It is clear that the Prosperity Gospel is only prevalent in the USA and other well-off western countries. Where did we get the idea that if we only have enough faith then the Lord will bless us with material wealth? I know why. We are spoiled as a nation. I have no doubt that God does bless some with material wealth as a result of their faithfulness, but there are also people with incredible faith who struggle to find food for dinner each night.

It is a personal passion of mine to learn more and support our fellow Believers who are persecuted for their faith. These people have faith in Jesus that I can only dream of having and yet they struggle everyday. Does that mean that God has abandoned them? Heavens no! He smiles down on them everyday as they show their love for Him with every sacrifice they willingly accept. But, I believe our brothers and sisters accept the persecution because they believe and KNOW that there is far more in heaven just waiting for them. They have a mansion and a white robe hanging up inside. If these Believers expected earthly wealth as a reward for their faith all they would face is disapointment and bitterness towards God. They know that in this fallen world they may only receive a crown of thorns just like their Savior did but that very same Savior will adorn them with a crown of roses when they arrive Home.

We may or may not experience true persecution in our lifetime. But, I do know that if we don't expect anything more that a "crown of thorns" on this earth then we'll be far happier, more content people. God doesn't promise us a "crown of roses" while we are here. We do know, though, that he has so much more just waiting for us. It is just a matter of knowing where your wealth really is and where you really want to build it.

Go on over to Sting My Heart to read what other faithful women are saying.