Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pinterest Princess

Oh my gosh, dinner was delish tonight!

As I have said before, I am not the cook in our family. I do a pretty good job baking, but cooking creatively just is not my forte. I do however, like to collect recipes with the intention of maybe making them someday.

Enter Pinterest.

I have a few boards dedicated to cooking and the other day I "pinned" a recipe for a copy cat Zuppa Toscana from the Olive Garden (original recipe from two peas and their pod)

I made a little tweak and used Gnocci instead of potatoes (simply because I wanted to try Gnocci) and it was amaze.

Here's how you can make this deliciousness for yourself:

4 strips bacon
1 lb Italian sausage (I used Medium because it was cheaper than hot)
1 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
1 large white onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
8 cups chicken broth
2 cups water
1 cup cream (I used whole milk)
1 package gnocci, cooked
3 cups kale, washed and roughly chopped
salt and pepper to taste

1. Cook bacon, set aside
2. Saute Italian sausage with red pepper flakes
3. While the sausage cooks, add a bit of oil to a soup pot and place over medium heat. When hot, add onions and garlic. Saute until onions are tender
4. Add chicken broth and water, bring to a boil
5. Add gnocci (I cooked the gnocci separately and added it after this step, but I think it would work fine to bring the whole thing to a boil and then reduce the heat once the gnocci begins to float)
6. Add cream, sausage and bacon. Taste a bit, wipe up your drool
7. Stir in chopped kale, season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes to taste
8. Serve hot

Oh. M. Gee. To quote my husband "you are the soup queen!" He was impressed as well! :)

I'm seriously considering a third bowl right now...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


In keeping with my post from a few days ago, I've been continuing to pray for my (our) future in a better way. I've been reminding myself (frequently) to let go of anxiousness regarding a timeline and to remember to trust God's perfect timing.

I wish my instinct to pray came before my instinct to worry. Gotta keep praying about it I guess.

I love that our God is so faithful. I love that He gives me little bits of encouragement, even though I've done nothing to deserve it.

Tonight Ben asked me what I thought about having a baby. He was expecting me to have some hesitation and a desire to wait a little longer after having watching two babies for a week. He was a bit taken aback when I told him I wanted it now more than ever. He said something about we shouldn't decide to have a baby until it is what I wanted most, and he became quiet when tears filled my eyes and I said "it is what I want more than absolutely anything in the whole world." He heard the weight, yearning, and readiness in my voice.

I told him about my anxiousness being a sin and about how I have been praying the past week - specifically how my prayers and heart has been changing and I have been more conscious to decide to trust instead of worry.

We talked about how important it will be for my income to become the secondary one and for him to have a primary income. I told him how I can envision struggling with putting his needs before our baby's and that I want him to always know that he will come first in my heart and he will always be my priority (of course, our baby's immediate needs will often take precedence, but being a faithful wife is such a part of being a faithful mom, in my opinion). We talked about what we need to get in order before we make a decision and we talked about how God will give us this gift when we are most ready for it.

The amazing thing about our conversation tonight though, was not in anything we discussed. It is the faithfulness of Jesus. My faith is not built around acts or "proof" of His promises or abilities. Faith is not about seeing, it is simply about believing, evidence or not. Despite that, Jesus give us little pieces to chew on and to hold onto. He's given me many throughout my life, all seemingly insignificant, but so profound to me. Ben and I have talked about having a baby many times before, but this conversation, I believe, was directly related to the conversations Jesus and I have been having this week. It was His was of telling me to keep trusting Him. Keep being faithful to remember He is in control and He will give me a baby in His time.

Be patient.


Be anxious for nothing.


Monday, October 24, 2011

A little too obsessed with a planner

A while back my Twitter and blog reader were blowing up about Erin Condren and her fabulous planners. I could never justify spending $50 on a planner (especially when my iPhone has a calendar feature embedded within in), but when I found a $50 for $25 offer and then a 50% off code, I decided to bite the bullet and order one for myself. 

I purchased this lovely one
in green. I debated about what design to choose, and after about 50 Google Image searches, I found one in green and I knew it was the one. I had a little money left over on my credit, so I also got a matching notepad like this:

So, needless to say, after all the hype I've read for the past two months, I'm super excited to finally have one of my own! I've been stalking the Erin Condren website and anxiously looking for my order to finally say "shipped"!

Sunday, October 23, 2011


"Assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what was done to the fig tree, but also if you say to this mountain, 'Be removed and be cast into the sea', it will be done. 
And whatever things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive."
Matthew 21:21-22

The dreams we have for ourselves, for our families, are there for a reason. Jesus instills within us our desires on purpose. He gives us wants and hopes because He wants us to have them.

Jesus put the ache to be a mother in my heart a long time ago. Even as a little girl, when someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, I'd say "a stay-at-home mom!" There was never any doubt for me. I would be a mama. Jesus gave me that desire, and I never doubted he would fulfill it.

Earlier this week I read a blog entry about worry. Kelly wrote about worry being a sin because it is you not trusting God. I thought about what she had wrote and something about it sat with me for a while. I started thinking I was in a good place in regards to worry, because I don't worry about having kids. I trust that someday He will give them to me. I trust I will be a mom. But, all of a sudden, I realized how naive my thinking was: Sure, I may believe I will have children one day, but I certainly worry about the timeline. I may not think my impatience and anxiousness as worry, but it is an act of not trusting God with His plan for my life, and therefore, it is a sin.

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."
Matthew 6:34

I was pretty convicted and spent a lot of time having a one-way conversation with God. "But God, I want a baby so badly, please just make this be the time." and "Please God, give me patience to wait for your timing - and please let your timing be soon."

And then, I heard Him tell me to stop being so silly and start listening.

Jesus gave me desire to be a mama. He created my heart with a specific purpose, part of which is to love my sweet babies. He will give me children at just the right, most perfect time. His time, not mine.

I am doing no good sitting here wishing I had a baby or worrying about when or if we should make one. Sufficient is the day it's own trouble! Why create something for my mind to fret about when I know that the promises He has made will be fulfilled in His own (perfect) time.

So, now, I have been focusing my prayers differently: "God, please use me in this time in my life to do your will. Please take this desire you created within me to serve others best as I wait for children of my own. Please help me live as well as you have intended for me in this specific season. I believe you have babies waiting for me, please change my heart and prepare it for loving a precious little one. Please help me to serve my husband as well as I can and to fully enjoy this time of loving just him. Please forgive my anxiousness. Thank you for this beautiful, sweet, lovely life you have given me. Thank you for giving me a future I am so excited about, but please help me to not miss out on the blessings you have in store for me today."

I have so much to learn, and my faith has so much more to grow, but thankfully, our God is a loving, faithful, forgiving God and He will never leave me nor forsake me. What a wonderful, amazing, mind-blowing concept that He cares for the desires of my heart, even the ones that involve squishy, squirmy lumps of love like this:

And, while I waiting and learning to really trust, I am enjoying borrowing other people's babies (such as the beautiful little missy above) and loving on them until I have to give them back.