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This Too Shall Pass

This too shall pass.

These four words. Simplistic yet their reverberations echo in my very soul. When life gets too heavy and I feel as if I am grasping at fragments of sanity, I remember that this moment will not last.

And it will pass.

I don’t remember the first time I heard the phrase but I know that sometime when I was a teenager and the chaos of my life was more that I could simply bear, these words became my mantra. When the machinations of people in my life conspired against me, I took a deep breath and prayed. And I told myself that this too shall pass.

As I became an adult and my soul was buried in another man’s emotional abuse, in his hand lay my heart, and the very life of me was shattering, I wondered why me…why was I suffering? When would I stop drowning and swim to the surface?

I held on. I prayed. I knew deep down, there would come a time, that this season of my life would pass.

And it did.

When the throes of my depression threatened to swallow me whole, it was all I could do to put one foot in front of the other. Spaces of time seemed endless and the only thing I could do was hold onto my faith.

The darkness, this too shall pass.

Some days will be bright and the sun will shine on my face, the grass will grow beneath my feet.

But on the days when there is no light, when the clouds of my despair threaten to rain down on my head like a storm, I remember those words…

This too shall pass.

This. Too. Shall. Pass.

Linking up with:

Mama's Losin' It

This is a recipe I posted a few years ago, but I had to send it out again :)

Yum, yum, yum!! I cannot say enough about this meal! I love it and it is quite simple to make. I have an old Gooseberry Patch cookbook and that is where this recipe comes from. You can serve it as the main course with Spanish rice or some chips and guacamole if you want, or by itself as a pre-dinner appetizer.

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Tortilla Black Bean Casserole

  • 2 c. chopped onion
  • 1 ½ c. green pepper, chopped
  • 14 ½ oz. can tomatoes, chopped
  • ¾ c. picante sauce
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 t. ground cumin
  • 15 oz. can black beans
  • 12 6-inch corn tortillas
  • 2 c. Monterey Jack cheese shredded**

In a large skillet, combine onion, green pepper, undrained tomatoes, picante sauce, garlic and cumin. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer uncovered, for 10 minutes. Stir in beans. Spread one-third of the bean mixture over bottom of 13″ x 9″ pan. Top with half of the tortillas, overlapping as necessary, and half the cheese. Add another third of the bean mixture, then remaining tortillas and bean mixture. Cover and bake in a 350° oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until heated through. Sprinkle with remaining cheese. Let stand for 10 minutes. Cut into squares to serve. Makes 10 to 12 side servings or 6 to 8 main dish servings.

**Sidenote: We are a household that loves cheese. I tend to be a little heavy-handed with this ingredient and use more in this dish. It makes it even more delicious, as if that’s possible!

I know most people wait until the end of the month to post whether or not they hit their monthly goal, but I was just too exited that I completed my crafty goodness!

My one goal this month was to make handmade Christmas cards and I am done, done, done!

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

I love my cards and I am thrilled to have finished this project before the end of the month! I didn’t want to still be working on them over the upcoming Thanksgiving weekend :)

Here's what I've completed so far!

On the inside of the card, I used my trusty stamp and ink pad which I already had in my scrapbooking bin. No money spent!

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Ta da!

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I loved making my homemade, all kinds of crafty goodness, Christmas cards :)

Hope all of you enjoy your week and have a lovely Thanksgiving!

Me Want Cookies

Sorry about the title; my daughter is in a bit of a Sesame Street phase and Cookie Monster, who has yet to master his correct use of pronouns, popped into my head. ;)

Cookies!

So the holidays are fast approaching and it is about that time to start baking! Here are some fantastic cookie recipes that I have made in the past; bookmark ‘em and get ready for yummy deliciousness! :)

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies

I loooove these cookies and my family does too! I definitely make a lot of these during the holiday season

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (I used wheat flour, but either is fine)
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • ¾ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 375°
  • Combine flour, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl. Beat butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar and vanilla extract in large bowl until creamy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Gradually beat in flour mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoon onto ungreased baking sheets.
  • Bake for 9-11 minutes or until golden brown.

Yummy Chocolate Chip Cookies

**Recipe adapted from Nestle’

Caramel Apple Cookies

These cookies barely lasted the whole day. We couldn’t stop eating them! :)

Caramel Apple Cookies

Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks salted butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 2 ²/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup graham-cracker crumbs
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 small apple, peeled, cored, and finely chopped (¾ cup)
  • 1 cup vanilla caramels
  • 3 tablespoons whipping cream

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350°. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper. In a bowl, beat butter on medium to high-speed for 30 seconds. Beat in sugars until fluffy. Then add eggs and vanilla.
  • In a medium bowl, stir together flour, crumbs, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon. Add to butter mixture and beat until combined. Stir in apple.
  • Shape dough into 1 ¼-inch balls. Arrange balls 2 inches apart on cookie sheets. Bake for 12 minutes or until edges are lightly browned. Remove and let cool on wire racks.
  • In a bowl, mix caramels and cream. Microwave on high for 30 to 60 seconds or until nearly melted, stirring once. Stir until smooth. Drizzle over cookies; serve when hardened.

caramel apple cookies

**Recipe adapted from Parents Magazine

Favorite Peanut Butter Cookies

These cookies were a favorite of my aunt’s…they are so good!

Favorite Peanut Butter Cookies

Ingredients:

  • ½ c. butter, softened
  • ½ c. sugar
  • ½ c. brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 c. smooth or chunky peanut butter
  • ½ t. baking soda
  • ½ t. vanilla
  • 1 ¼ c. all-purpose flour

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Add egg, peanut butter, soda, and vanilla and beat until smooth. Add flour in portions, beating until well mixed. Shape balls out of teaspoons of the dough and arrange on greased baking sheets. Flatten balls with tines of a fork, making a pattern. Bake in center of oven about 12 minutes, or until golden.

**Recipe adapted from the Gooseberry Patch Book “Celebrate Autumn”

Enjoy!

I have one goal for November, which is pretty good considering we are already a week in. ;)

My one goal this month is to…drum roll please…

Make handmade Christmas cards!!

So here’s the thing; we are a family that sends out Christmas cards. I know some people think it’s an outdated tradition or they send e-cards *shudder*, but I like Christmas cards. I like to send them out and I look forward to receiving them in the mail.

But I was also looking for ways to save some money on them as the holiday budget can get a little cuckoo if one is not careful. So I thought about it and I realized that I had everything I needed already to make the cards!

See, a few years ago, I had planned to make Christmas cards from scratch. I had purchased the blank cards and envelopes and already had some stuff in my scrapbooking bin to get ‘em done. But I didn’t plan out a schedule to make them. I kept putting them off and putting them off and then it was too late; I had run out of time to make the cards and had to go to the store to purchase them.

But not this year! :)

I have already started on some cards and I have the whole month of November to get them done. Ambitious, crafty, and frugal all mixed into one!

Here's what I've completed so far!

Here’s what I’ve completed so far!

No extra money being spent, I free up some items in my scrapbooking bin, and my friends and family get some homemade crafty goodness from yours truly

So in between watching my sports teams play this month, I will be on the couch making Christmas cards.

Getting my craft on!

Getting my craft on!

The holiday will be here before ya know it! :)

Well October is over and the Halloween candy is…still here. :) My daughter received quite a bit of candy from trick-or-treating and even though my husband and I my daughter has been eating it, it is still here making its presence known.

Before I get to my goal wrap-up, can I just say how beautiful Oregon is? I mean, the colors here in the trees continues to astound me. Autumn in Oregon is truly a thing of creative beauty.

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On to the goals…how did I do?

My Goals For October:

Make 2 New Recipes: Meh… I made one recipe. I really wanted to make two, but it just didn’t happen. In case you missed it I made Chicken Nuggets with Sweet Potato. Check it out!

Purchase a Winter Jacket For My Daughter: Done! Thanks Dad! You are the best grandpa :)

Take My Multi-Vitamin Every Day: I missed a couple of days, but I did keep track and hitting 25 out of 31 days isn’t too shabby considering how I was barely taking even one the month before.

Sock Away Some Money into our Emergency Fund: We’ve started to sell some things on Ebay, so this money will go towards the e-fund. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do, right?

Write For Me: I did get some non-blog writing done, which is a good thing but it wasn’t nearly the amount that I would have liked to write. I really need to be better disciplined at this. Any tips on how to set aside time to do this?

So that’s the deal with October. Next post I’ll talk about my one goal for November. Yes, one goal. I’m ambitious like that ;)

It’s just me and a drum. My call goes out and the echo reverberates on the walls. Canvas of white bouncing sounds off the tall dome. I carry my drum, I carry my drum.

Sometimes the drum is too heavy. Sometimes I march in a line. Mostly though, I march in place. I beat my drum. I beat my drum.

Some of us like beating our own drum. Others of us are simply weary from carrying the damn thing.

My drum is my port in the storm. Guide me, take me, almost sweeping me away. But I still stand here. My feet are still rooted to the ground. Bang goes the drum. Bang goes the drum.

Some days, the drum is light. I beat to my own music, I sashay with the best of them. My fingers are nimble, and the exhilaration takes flight.

But there are days when beating my own drum is more than I can bear. Heavy as an elephant, grey and unyielding. A cathartic mass that will not give me any peace. No energy for my drum. No energy for my drum.

It’s just me and my drum. I continue to march. One foot in front of the other.

One foot in front of the other…

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