October 22, 2010

Pretty Please...

I'm very sorry for posting another advertisement-style post, but I'd like to ask for your help. I've entered a toddler's bedtime story contest, and in order to win the contest, I need to get people to vote on my story. In short, I am trying to catch up to some people with over 2,000 votes (haha, I know... well, I can at least try). So I'm asking that if you read this, you would take a second to vote. AND if you are really nice, you'll come back and vote multiple times - you are allowed to vote once every day! All you have to do is visit the link below and click the "vote" button. I'd also appreciate it if you would share this with your friends and/or family if you think of it. Thank you! :-)

(End of commercial).

October 20, 2010

Communication Crisis?

Communication crisis
Lately I have been thinking about the developments in technology and how it's changing the way we communicate. I'm not on Facebook and I don't intend to get on, but pretty much everyone I know IS on Facebook. People joke about how they are "addicted" to it... but I wonder if they ever really think about whether that is true or not. Facebook (and Twitter) is accessible 24/7 now with its availability on phones. Some people will update their statuses all the time with trivial information. A friend of mine was saying how she had blocked so many people on her Facebook because she just didn't need to know that they have smelly feet or that they ate pizza for dinner. A while back my mom announced she was deleting her Facebook account, and she got a message from a friend who said, "But... how will you communicate?? This is how people talk now."

It is a delightful Autumn day today... the sun is shining brightly, and the air is crisp with the scent of falling leaves. Every year I am reminded how much I love fall! I think I may love it a teensy bit more than spring. I have been very (very, very, very times 10) bad about posting here and haven't posted any really meaty posts in a while. So here's an attempt... :-)

Is it? What happened to picking up the phone, or writing a letter? Or better yet, having someone over for lunch just to be together and chat? I don't mean to say that Facebook and Twitter are inherently evil or wrong. They're not. But if it becomes such a priority in your life that you can't imagine what you would do without it, and you must be able to check it everywhere, all the time, something's not right there. Texting is right up there with FB and Twitter. All these avenues of "convenient" communication teach us to disregard basic rules of communication, like spelling (wht's sp nywy?). :-)

And another thing about texting, and social networking on phones. It's distracting. Both for the user and the people they are around. Apparently nobody realizes anymore that it's rude to be in the middle of a conversation with someone, and suddenly whip out your phone, and start typing away, acting as if you are ignoring your companion (whether you are really listening or not is not the point). The other person feels as though you don't care to talk to them, and you are just too caught up in checking your texts to listen and hold a conversation.

Some of my friends tell me, "You should get a Facebook! I can keep up with my friends so much better on Facebook!" Hmmm. I'm not so sure that Facebook really helps you keep up with your friends. After all, there isn't much that's personal about Facebook. You type what you are currently doing at the moment in that little box, hit "share" and it's visible to everyone that calls themselves your "friend" in the FB world (and that could be hundreds of people!). Of course, it is still fun... why else is half the world on Facebook? One reason I'm NOT on it, is I know I would like it too much!

It seems like there is a lot more worldliness in Christian circles than there used to be. Conversations revolve around secular topics - movies, sports, and politics. I have a feeling this is related to Facebook... teaching us to value the things that don't really matter. We don't talk about what's going on in each other's lives anymore. We just talk about little nothings, hardly any different that what we talked about the last time we saw each other! And again, I don't have a problem necessarily with talking about movies or politics... but when it seems like that is ALL you talk about, there's a problem.

This is an introductory post to a series of posts I would like to do about writing letters... why we should and how we should, maybe with some fun tutorials thrown in as well. Make sure to come back!

October 15, 2010

Joyfully At Home... The Book

Joyfully at HomeI just found out today that Jasmine Baucham's new book, Joyfully At Home is now available from Vision Forum! If you are not familiar with Jasmine, she has a blog with the same title as the book, where she writes encouraging articles for young women. If you have not visited her blog before, I highly recommend that you hop over there and read the archives!

At any rate, I have not yet read the book, but if it is anything like her other writings it promises to be a great blessing! Lord willing, I will post a review of the book at a later date after I have read it. :-) For now, grab a copy for yourself!

October 5, 2010

Apple Cinnamon Clafoutis

Doesn't this look divine? This was the recipe we made for Cross Country Bakers last month. It's a French dessert made with apple custard-like filling. Mmmmm... I thought it was about time I posted a recipe for you all, so try this one out for your next dessert (or have it for breakfast like we did!). Enjoy!

Apple Cinnamon Clafoutis


* About 3 or 4 apples
* 2 large eggs + 1 yolk
* 1/2 cup blond cane sugar
* 3 Tbsp. cornstarch
* 3 Tbsp. all purpose flour
* 1 cup whole milk, cold
* 1 vanilla, seeds removed (I didn't have vanilla seeds so I used 1 tsp. vanilla)
* 1/2 cup heavy cream
* ground cinnamon


* Preheat your oven at 350ºF.
* Peel the apples and cut into cubes or slices whatever you feel is best for the oven dish you are using (I used ramekins)
* Beat the eggs and yolk with the sugar.
* Add the vanilla seeds and mix.
* Dilute the cornstarch in the cold milk.
* Add the flour and cornstarch to the previous preparation, with the cream. Mix well until homogeneous. Add ground cinnamon to your liking.
* Grease small ramekins (or a larger dish) and sprinkle with sugar. Remove the excess.
* Divide the apples  between them and pour the cream over.
* Sprinkle with ground cinnamon and place in the oven for 40 to 45 min, until golden. Remove. Eat warm or cold.

Original recipe from Jungle Frog Cooking.