Monday, February 16, 2009

Crafty Tuesday

I follow a very sweet homemaking blog, hersoutherncharm, that is hosting "Crafty Tuesdays" where we are to show off some crafty items that we've made throughout the week/month/year. I am not the craftiest, but I do enjoy being creative and using the cute stickers and papers I've collected throughout the years. I inherited a bunch of scrapbooking and cardmaking materials from my Grandma Clara and I've really enjoyed taking up one of her favorite hobbies - card making- and making it one of my favorites as well. I made a few this week that I forgot to take pictures of, but more will come soon, I'm sure.

My first project this week was a baby shower invitation sign for my friend Jen. For all showers at work we post flyers in each break room, so I made two of these signs to hang. The picture doesn't really show detail, but I think they came out pretty cute! I'm hanging them tomorrow morning, I hope Jen likes them!

I am a card person. I love Hallmark and can spend hours looking for the card that says exactly what I want it to say, and I really feel joy when I find the perfect card for my someone special. My husband however, is not a card person. Where I think the card is often the most special part of any gift, he thinks it is a waste of paper and has said many times "Why do I need to buy a card to tell you exactly what I can say myself?" Darn logical brain of his.

With Valentine's Day coming up I knew I had to get the perfect card for our second VDay as man and wife, however, I know my husband. He would not appreciate a store bought card as much he would one hand created by his loving wife. He would be hurt that I would make cards for my friends and family, but not for him, even if the card I bought him was "perfect." So, I let go of trying to find the perfect verse inside the most perfect card and set off making my best friend a card perfect for him.

Ben is logical, he is not frilly or frivolious. He is smart and sensible and values natural simplicity. I think I hit the nail on the head with this...(please excuse the poor picture quality - taken with my phone)

He also surprised me with a card he made himself. He is a little ashamed of the quality of his card - did I mention my husband is a perfectionist? - but I love it, and I love him.

That's it for now, I'm up way too late, as usual, and my body is longing for sleep. I hope your Tuesday is crafty!

- Mrs. G

I love one-dish dinners!

As I have said before, Ben does most of the cooking in our house. I can cook, but he can cook better! When I do happen to prepare dinner it's usually one of my standard, go-to, easy-peasy meals that we've had a million times (and it's usually Mexican...mmm...I love Mexican!). I tend to crave meals that are one-dish wonders - soups, chilis, goulash, casserole, dishes where you get all the flavors in one forkfull, where my sweet husband is more of a meat & separate side dish kind of guy.

I came upon this recipe a while ago (I thought it was here, but I searched and searched and couldn't find it, so I'm sorry, I can't give credit to the original creator!) and have been wanting to try it. I finally did so tonight and I'm pleased to say it will be part of my rotation from now on.

Artichoke Chicken
1 can artichoke hearts
1 c. grated parmesan cheese
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 c. sour cream
1/2 c. mayonnaise
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
Breadcrumbs, if desired for topping

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix all ingredients except chicken in a medium size bowl (I chopped the artichokes in my food processor before mixing them with everything else). Place chicken in oven-safe baking dish. Cover chicken with artichoke mixture. Sprinkle breadcrumbs on top. Bake uncovered for 40 minutes or until chicken is done. Serve over rice or noodles.

Delicious, easy-peasy and a perfect the one-dish wonder!

Mrs. G

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

I love this man.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Peace in this Place

I love reading blogs. One of my new favorite hobbies is to get lost in the maze of blog-land. I often do so with some sweet worship in the background and I am again reminded how blessed I am. I don't update my blog very often. Sometimes I'm intimidated at the creativeness and beautiful writing of some other girls, and sometimes I just don't know how to put my feelings into words. I suppose this is more of a diary/journal and a place to put my thoughts and share my heart - this is my place. My little piece of the online world. 

I am thankful for my life. Ben and I are in such a sweet place right now. I have a wonderful schedule at work where I am able to push my days together in one week and have the following week off. This coincides nicely with Ben's schedule. He only has class two days a week, which leaves us with a couple of full days together in the middle of the week. It's such a blessing to be able to enjoy quiet days together when the rest of the world is spinning crazily around us. 

I love that it's just us for now. Yes, I desperately want to be a mom - I see a baby and my heart yearns for one of my own. Then I look at this sweet man I get to have all to myself and I am thankful for the time we are able to dedicate to one another only. I know that God is working on both of our hearts, preparing us to be parents - and it will take a long time! I am learning how to put my husband first more and more. By nature I am very selfish and immature (shh! Don't tell Ben I know this about myself!). God is teaching me how to handle disappointment with grace and maturity, and how take responsibility for my own actions and faults before passing them onto someone else (mainly my husband). I also believe he is softening my fiercely independent husband's heart towards a baby. We have a lot we want to accomplish before we make our twosome a threesome, and I am learning how to rest in this time, in this place.

I have always struggled with wanting to be two steps ahead of where I am. This impatience has caused me to overlook the blessings and joy that were in my current situation. I don't want to let that happen now, or ever for that matter. I remember a sweet moment just before I met Ben. I was in England feeling homesick, impatient and lonely. I wanted so badly to be in love and married. I remember walking across my room when the Lord stopped me and so clearly said "Stephanie, I have you right where I want you. Your future is in My hands, do not worry or fear. Have peace in this time." I heard Him and listened. I finally surrendered my worry and anxiety and felt a wave of overwhelming peace fill my soul. It was only a short time later that Ben emailed me for the first time - and I instantly knew that he was a gift and proof of provision. 

It's hard to juggle joy in a current situation and anxiety for the future. Maybe that's why I'm not supposed to. Matthew 6:34 says "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." I'm working on it, and I'm not alone. God continues to bless me with little gifts, such as my sweet hubby pulling me closer and snuggling me tighter, to encourage me and remind me to be still in this moment. Have peace in the place and be joyful where I am - where we are. 

Ok, I'm working on patience, but does anyone have suggestions on how to impress this point onto future-grandmas? ;)

Have a sweet day my friends,
Mrs. BigTime