Monday, January 30, 2012

Meet Our Compassion Kids Monday: Mamata

Kelsey was really excited when she learned that she could be a correspondent sponsor with Compassion. At first, we requested one child for her to correspond with. In September, she was notified that she would be a correspondent sponsor with Mamata in India.

Mamata is 13 years old and lives with her father, mother, little brother and little sister. She likes the color pink and likes to sing songs in Sunday School. Mamata asks for prayers for her studies because she would like to be a nurse one day.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Favorite Photo of the Week

Matthew and Kelsey just before our Annual Civil War Ball.

For those of you who don't know, our family has been participating in Civil War reenacting for the past four years. One of the highlights of the year for me is the annual Civil War Ball. I love dressing up in my fancy ball gown and dancing the old english country dances. The Virginia Reel, the Gay Gordon, the Quadrilles, such fun dances!

Since photography is something that I enjoy, on Fridays, I would love to post my favorite photo of the week.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Joy Dare #43 - 63

43. hearing my kids laugh together
44. homemade chicken noodle soup
45. remembering how amazing the Gospel is
46. watching a little bird find food after the rain
47. paper napkin fight and laughing with my kids
48. sound of heavy rain
49. finished many sewing projects
50. wearing my Civil War ball gown
51. dancing the Virginia Reel
52. Matthew playing with the worship band
53. Kelsey's little note
54. dinner and conversation with friends
55. homeschooling my children
56. time for quiet afternoon reading
57. blue sky peeking through a cloud-filled sky
58. a clean desk
59. In 'n Out burger and fries
60. flannel sheets
61. old books
62. pictures of my family
63. morning sky outside my kitchen window

How is your Joy Dare list coming along?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

WIP Projects

Do you have any WIP projects around your home? What is a WIP project anyway? WIP stands for Works in Progress. I like this acronym better than UFO, better known as Unfinished Objects.

Just like I usually have bookmarks in multiple books at one time, I usually have a few projects started in varying states of almost completeness.

Here are three WIP projects I would like to finish in the next week:

1. Bind 2 quilts - a couple of my quilting friends and I started a monthly quilt group last year. Our first project was two quilts for Quilts of Valor. This was a group effort of building the blocks together, my friend did the quilting, and now my task is to bind them and have them ready to be delivered.

2. Finish off 3 knitted dish cloths - I just love having some of these ready and on hand for bridal showers, hostess gifts, and just because gifts. The threads just need to be woven in on these three, then they are ready for my gift box.

3. Finish Ava's scarf - this scarf is for one of the little girls at church. She told me that she likes purple, so I hope she likes this!

By posting my WIP projects on my blog, I am hoping this will be a way for me to track the progress of my WIP projects and be able to complete many of them this year.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Pasta Fagioli

I just love a hot bowl of homemade soup in the winter time!

A while back, I had seen a recipe for Pasta Fagioli on this crockpot blog. Since I am not a big crockpot fan, I went on a search to try to adapt the recipe for the stove top. After making a couple of changes, I was able to come up with this recipe:

1/2 pound ground beef
1/2 pound Italian sausage
1/2 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, sliced
2 cans (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
1 can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1 can white beans, drained and rinsed
4 cups beef broth
1 jar (16.5 oz) pasta sauce
2 t oregano
1 T Tabasco sauce
1/2 t salt
1/4 t pepper
1/2 cup pasta

Saute beef and Italian sausage until meat starts to brown. Add onions, garlic, carrots, and celery. Simmer for about 10 minutes. Add beans, tomatoes, beef broth, oregano, salt, pepper, pasta, sauce, Tabasco, and pasta. Simmer until carrots and celery are tender, about 45 minutes.

This recipe is more than plenty for the four of us for dinner as well as one night of leftovers. When I feel really ambitious, I made a double batch and freeze 2 meals worth in freezer bags.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Meet Our Compassion Kids Monday: Xiomara

Xiomara is the first child assigned to me as a correspondent sponsor back in September. She lives in Peru and our birthdays are 6 days apart. She is now 11 years old.

She lives with her parents and her sister. Her favorite color is light blue and she likes to cook, clean the house, and sing and dance. In her last letter, she was excited about Christmas coming because her mom would be preparing hot cocoa and fruit cake.

She asked for prayers for her mom that the Lord would continue to bless her. Xiomara always closes her letters with " a big hug and a kiss."

Thursday, January 19, 2012

The Joy Dare #26-42

26. Sleepytime Vanilla hot tea
27. Gooseberry Patch Christmas Book 13
28. cozy home
29. special prayer request for a sweet friend
30. reading "58: Fast Living - How the Church Will End Extreme Poverty" by Scott C. Todd
31. wearing my old worn-out Winnie the Pooh sweatshirt
32. seeing the American flag waving in the breeze
33. turkey in the oven
34. Peppermint hot tea
35. toast with cinnamon and honey
36. cherry popsicles
37. good night's sleep
38. my first Compassion Sunday box arrived!
39. reading "Beacause He Loves Me' by Elyse Fitzpatrick
40. "our citizenship is in heaven" - Philippians 3:20
41. "Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus" - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
42. "The Lord Himself goes before you and will be with you; He will never leave you nor forsake you" - Deuteronomy 31:8


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Daily Prayers for our Compassion Kids

I just love the new child packets that come when you sponsor a child with Compassion!

"This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us." - 1 John 5:14

On the back of the bookmark that you can tear out of the booklet is a suggestion of daily prayers for your sponsored child. I decided to use this list to make a prayer box to keep on our table so that we can pray for these things each morning before breakfast.

On a small card for each day, I wrote out the different prayer items.

"If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." - Matthew 21:22

I pray that each one of these children grow up to make a positive difference in their families and in their communities for Christ.

Monday, January 16, 2012

"One" winner!

I had fun reading everyone's goals they posted for the "One" giveaway!

The winner is............Hopeful Hez!

Be sure to e-mail (you can send it to kymk99 at yahoo dot com) your mailing address to me and I will get the book out to you this week! 

Meet Our Compassion Kids Monday: Eduardo

His smile just melts my heart!

We started sponsoring Eduardo in December. Kelsey decided that we needed to sponsor a little boy and we wanted to sponsor a child in Mexico so that we might be able to visit this child some time in the future. After looking at pictures on the Compassion web site, Kelsey and I both felt that Eduardo was meant to be the little boy we were to sponsor.

Eduardo is 5 years old and will have a birthday in April. He lives with both his parents and his mom has hyperthyroidism. We have been praying for his family, and especially his mom, since we started sponsoring him.

We have already sent off a couple of letters to Eduardo and are patiently waiting for that first letter  from him. I will be sure to share more about Eduardo as we learn more about him.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

The Joy Dare #4-25

Have you decided to take The Joy Dare?

I am working my way to 1000 gifts this year and am up to #25. Last week, I posted my first three gifts. My goal is to post my list each Thursday. You can all keep my accountable! :o)

4. Cassie's heart surgery went well! Praise the Lord!
5. pink clouds in the twilight sky
6. good friends for my kids
7. friends who love their Compassion kids
8. time with Kelsey
9. time with godly women
10. cream colored envelope in the mail from Victor
11. family game night (played 'Around the World')
12. Ghiradelli White Hot Mocha
13. freedom to worship
14. John and Whitney's news! Baby #2 on the way!
15. Cassie joining all of us in the cafeteria at the hospital!
16. mailed packets to our Compassion kids
17. nice afternoon outside for reading
18. rescued the flavorless Chicken Chili leftovers
19. homechooling my children
20. Winter White Chocolate ice cream
21. getting my Compassion stuff organized
22. hearing Matthew practice worship songs on his guitar
23. homemade Snickerdoodles
24. watching 'Enchanted' with Kelsey
25. scheduling my first Compassion Sunday outside of my own church

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Time for "One" Giveaway

A couple of months ago, a Compassion blogging friend of mine was doing a giveaway on her blog for this book:

I was really excited when I learned that I was the winner of the giveaway! This book was published in 2002 for the 50th anniversary of Compassion International. It has a history of how this ministry started with one man, Everett Swanson, in 1952 in Korea. The book is filled with stories and pictures:

I just love this picture! The expression on her face is priceless as she is reading a letter from her sponsor.

Since I was able to find another copy of this book used from Amazon, I want to give away a copy to one lucky reader! To enter this giveaway, leave a comment on this blog letting me know what is one goal you hope to accomplish this year. Deadline to enter is Friday, January 13th at midnight pacific time.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Meet Our Compassion Kids Monday: Susanta

Susanta is the young man that Matthew started sponsoring back in October.

Susanta lives in India with his parents and 2 older sisters. He lives in a village and likes to play cricket. His favorite color is yellow and he likes apples. In his first letter to Matthew, Susanta asked for prayers for him and his family.

When I asked Matthew why he decided to sponsor Susanta, here was his answer, "I'm not totally sure why I decided to sponsor Susanta, but I do know that the Bible says quite a bit about helping the poor and needy. Here is one of those verses: Whoever oppresses a poor man insults his Maker, but he who is generous to the needy honors him. (Proverbs 14:31 ESV)"

We look forward to getting to know this young better in this new year!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

The Joy Dare

Have you read anything by Ann Voskamp? I started reading her blog when she went on a Compassion trip to Guatemala almost 2 years ago. She has also written a book called 'One Thousand Gifts' (which I have read and need to read again). One of the things she really encourages everyone to do is to start a gratitude journal. Simply write down things from your day that you consider a blessing.

This year, she issued a challenge to join her on The Joy Dare. Write down 3 things each day for the whole year that you are grateful for. By the end of the year, you will have written down over one thousand things that you are grateful for. Wouldn't it be great to read this list at the end of the year? At the end of her post, she is even offering a free printable January Joy Dare list to help you get started.

I would like to join this challenge and will be finding just the right journal to start me on this journey. In the meantime, here is the start of my list:

1. Jesus loves me
2. My husband loves me
3. My children love me

What are you grateful for today?

Wednesday, January 4, 2012 can goes a long way

Browsing through Pinterest has been a fun way to find new recipes. Found one last week and it was interesting reading the comments. The recipe calls for 1-2 chipolte peppers, but some people didn't read it correctly and put in 1 to 2 cans of chipolte peppers. Yikes!

The first recipe we tried was Mexican Lime Chicken Soup:

This was the one where you want to make sure you only use 1 to 2 chipolte peppers, not 1 to 2 cans! I didn't care for working with the boneless, skinless chicken thighs, so I will probably use chicken breasts in the future. Also, we added frozen corn to the soup and I am thinking some beans would be a nice addition too.

Since I now had more chipolte peppers and sauce to use, I was on the hunt for another recipe using chipoltes. I was so glad when I saw a friend pin this one:

Spicy Chipolte Chicken Pasta! This is suppose to be like what they serve at The Cheesecake Factory. I have never been to The Cheesecake Factory so I had nothing to compare it to.

The recipe involved many steps and lots of dishes:

I changed up the recipe a little bit. Asparagus was $4.99 a pound at the store this morning, so I used broccoli instead.  I had red and yellow bell peppers, so I used them both. We didn't add the frozen peas, but I an thinking that frozen corn might be good with this one. Also, because Kevin really likes chicken, I used twice as much chicken as the recipe calls for.

Paired with salad and a roll or some bread, this made a very filling dinner. Plus we have enough left over for another night's dinner and Kevin to have leftovers for lunch.

Now to find more recipes to use up the rest of the can of chipoltes!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Hello Mornings Challenge

I don't know about you, but I have a really hard time with winter. So I have decided to join this challenge to maximize my mornings! This challenge has been set up to help us in three ways:

1. Get. Out. Of. Bed! - I don't like to be cold. In the winter, it is hard for me to get out of bed in the morning. It is so warm and toasty under the covers and it is so dark in the mornings. My prayer is that this challenge will help me get out of bed by 7am every morning so that I am ready to tackle my day.

2. Create a Quiet Time Schedule - Since my kids usually sleep later than I do, I am able to spend time reading God's Word in the morning before they wake up. My prayer is that I can also use this time in worship and prayer/listening. If you sign up for this challenge, there are also some printable prayer calendars available.

3. Develop an Exercise Plan - Last year, I was very faithful using the Wii Active 'game' and was exercising 3 times a week. We entered a very busy time for a few weeks in May and the exercising stopped.. Then in the fall, Kevin and I started walking after dinner. Then it started getting darker after dinner, so the walking stopped. My prayer is to start back into a routine of using the Wii Active and walking at least 3 times a week.

4. Create Planning Routine - While we are in the school year, things run pretty smoothly around here. However, by planning my time better, I know there are a lot of projects I can tackle and finish. My prayer is to use the planning time to schedule in projects I have been wanting to start and finish.

The challenge is free and has a free printable book to help you plan your mornings. Will you join me?

Monday, January 2, 2012

Meet Our Compassion Kids Monday: Lina

Since we are in a new year, I thought over the next couple of months, I would introduce our Compassion kids each Monday.

We have been sponsoring Lina since August of 2010. The first little girl that we sponsored moved away from the Compassion center, so Kelsey decided we needed to choose another little girl from the same country.

Lina lives in Colombia and her birthday is April 7, 1999. She lives with her dad, mom, brother, aunt and grandpa. She likes to swim and her favorite color is yellow. In her letters, she always asks for prayers for her family and that she does well in school. We have been blessed with four letters from Lina.

Next Monday, I will introduce the young man that Matthew is sponsoring!