Archive | October, 2013

The Original Teen Mom

31 Oct

18 years ago today I was 17.  It was my senior year of high school or at least it should of been. I was that girl. You all knew her. That girl in high school who suddenly disappeared from the halls-the girl who got pregnant in high school. Let me tell you, it wasn’t trendy 18 years ago to be that girl. There were no television shows or magazine covers to glamorize it.

At 23 weeks pregnant I went into preterm labor. For a week they were able to pump enough medication into me to delay delivery. Halloween 1995 at 24 weeks pregnant I welcomed my 1 lb 12 oz baby girl into the world. The doctor laid her briefly on my chest before being whisked away by a team of doctors and nurses. Hours later I was wheeled down to get a glimpse at my daughter. She was covered in tubes and wires and her eyes were still fused shut. She was beautiful despite it all.

Her outcome was bleak. I was told to prepare for wheel chairs, feeding tubes, extreme mental impairments and the list went on. Some said it was what I deserved for being a teen mom, others said that I got myself into this so I would have to deal with this on my own, and I was ridiculed by the rest. Let me tell you, it was a dark, terrifying, lonely time.

No matter, everyday I was there mothering her as much as I could under the extreme circumstances. Two and half months later and one month and one day before her due date, Alison beat the odds and came home months ahead of schedule weighing a hefty 4lbs 7 oz. Not only did she come home but she stayed home. The first few months were rough. Sleeping for only 45 minutes at a time, countless doctor appointments, and financial hardship.

Alison beat the odds in ways that doctors can’t explain. It wasn’t an easy ride but we made it.

I could go on, the story is good….well, at least I think so:) I share the good with the bad. The triumphs with the tragedies. No, it wasn’t ideal to be a pregnant teenager. I see my daughter now at the age I was when she was born and she is such a baby still. I think back to the girl I used to be and I see a scared young girl in need of a little compassion, guidance, and forgiveness.

I think sometimes we dismiss people who are hurting when we feel like they brought it on themselves. We pick and chose who is deserving of mercy and compassion and when we do we are playing god. Loving someone who is hurting because of their poor choice doesn’t mean you agree with or support their transgression.  Indifference and humiliation further breaks the person. We serve a God of healing and mercy and sometimes that healing and mercy comes from you.

Today, I rejoice and thank God for the miracle who sleeps down the hall. I thank God for giving that 17 year old girl such love and compassion for that tiny baby, and I thank God for His compassion and mercy on me, and for being the God of second chances.

*Photo is of the first time I got to hold my daughter*

~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca

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Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Comparison

27 Oct
Amen!  Just what I have been speaking to my teenage daughter about.  So easy to fall into the Hollywood trap.  Great reminder for all women.
~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca
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Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Connecting in a Disconnected World

20 Oct

We are such a fast paced busy society.  The 21st century has us overbooked, over stressed, and completely disconnected with each other.  We are families with busy careers and too many activities.  The time spent face to face with each other is being replaced with being shoulder to shoulder in the car distracted by some sort of gadget. I Pods, cell phones, and video games have replaced real human interaction.  Families used to treasure the time around the dinner table just sharing and talking, creating strong family bonds.  Now, it’s a race to throw something in the microwave or visiting the drive thru in between activities.  We are losing the true purpose and beauty of life and our families are missing out on the deep bonds that make family so precious.

Don’t get me wrong, I love social media.  I have reconnected with friends, “watched” families grow through shared pictures, and kept up to date on all the happenings of family and friends near and far.  I love reading blogs and having answers to questions only a Google search away.  But, I am not cultivating real relationships by starring at a screen all day, actually just the opposite is happening.  We are becoming an anti social culture losing our ability to have meaningful person to person relationships.

Having a presence is social media is fantastic and can be incredibly beneficial.  It is a great tool to reach masses, connect, and network.  Placing limits, especially for our children is vital.  We need to give them plenty of opportunities to be disconnected and let them have the chance to develop organic imaginative play, learn social cues and interaction, develop critical thinking skills, proper communication skills, and time to build lasting strong relationships.  In order for my family to see the value of disconnecting I have to demonstrate healthy social media habits.

I found myself slipping lately.  My son called me, “laptop mommy” the other day, YIKES!  I don’t want to be remembered as the mom who wasted her day in front of a screen “Liking” someone else’s memories; I want to be making my own.  Imposing healthy limits on myself will keep me mindful of what is valuable and meaningful.  The importance on being present in your home and limiting outside distractions be it social media or too many activities will have positive impacts on children especially as they grow into their teen years.  Having meals together and making time for each other will greatly reduce the likelihood that your children will abuse drugs and alcohol and they will experience a greater sense of joy and satisfaction not just with their family but life in general.

I am making the commitment to reconnect and be present with those I am with and focus on things that have eternal value.

What are some steps you take to limit computer, cell phone, extra curricular activities, etc..?  I would love to hear from you!   As always, thanks for taking the time to visit.

~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~

Rebecca

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Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

My Father Is……….

16 Oct
 This is something I came across long ago.  I have this printed out and keep it in my Bible.  It has been a treasure to me and I hope it will be to you, also.  Thanks for visiting.

Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca

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Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Did somebody say Juicy Lucy?

15 Oct

What, you may ask, could possibly be more indulgent and delicious then a melty gooey cheese stuffed  burger?  Perhaps 2 melty gooey cheese stuffed burgers ;)This is definitely not your average cheeseburger.  This is a fry em up and WOW them kinda burger. My kids say they are magic. Try them out an see for yourself…….I double dare ya!

You are going to need 1 1/2 pounds ground beef (I am using 85/15)
1 large onion, 1 package of button mushrooms, 6-8 (or more) slices of cheese
(I used 3 slices of American and 3 slices of Swiss) use your favorites,
pepper, garlic powder, Worcestershire sauce, and olive oil.
Start of by washing your mushrooms. Chop the onion and mushrooms.
Add 1-2 Tablespoons of olive oil in pan and heat on medium-high heat.
Once the pan is hot add the mushrooms and onions.
Cook 7-8 minutes or until the onions and mushrooms are tender
and caramelized. Stirring occasionally. Remove pan from heat when
finished cooking.
To prepare the Juicy Lucy’s, put your ground beef, 1 tsp Worcestershire
sauce, 1 tsp pepper and 1 1/2 tsp garlic powder. Mix well.
start forming into thin uniform sized patties. You will be stacking
the cheese in between 2 patties so you’ll want them to be
thin enough so that they cook quickly and evenly.
I was able to get 4 regular sized burgers plus 2 small burgers
from the ground beef.
Break each cheese slice into 4 pieces.


Stack the desired number of cheese slices on top of the
first patty ( I used between 6-8 squares). Place the second
patty on top of the cheese and pinch seams together really
well so that the cheese can’t escape the burger.
I am using a large electric griddle set at between 325-350
degrees. You could also fry in a pan over medium heat or on
grill. I cooked for 7 minutes each side. We like our meat well
done.
Here is what they look like on the flip. When finished place
burger on a bun and top with your onion and mushroom
mixture. Serve with the rest of your favorite burger fixings.
I would suggest you wait a few minutes before biting into
your burger, it will be hot! Enjoy!

Ingredients
1 1/2 pounds ground beef
1 onion
1 package fresh button mushrooms
6-8 slices of cheese
olive oil
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp pepper
1 1/2 tsp garlic powder

Instructions
~Wash the mushrooms. Chop the mushrooms and onion. Add olive oil to pan and
heat to med-high. When hot add the mushrooms and onion cooking 7-8
minutes or until tender and caramelized.
~Add ground beef, Worcestershire sauce, pepper and garlic powder to bowl and mix well.
Form into thin equal number patties.
~Break each cheese slice into 4 pieces and stack desired number of squares
on top of one patty. Place the second patty on top of the cheese pinching the seams
together well to keep cheese from oozing out. Cook on med heat (325-350 degrees)
for about 7 minutes each side (well done) or until desired doneness.
~Serve on a bun topped with your onion and mushroom mixture.
Serve with the rest of your favorite burger fixings.

  I just love re-creating a restaurant favorite at home. Not only is it fun but budget friendly also! What a great way to jazz up your next BBQ or get together.
Do you have any copy cat recipes?  I would love to see what you re-create!
Thanks for visiting!
~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca
Let’s be Pinterest friends!
rhm

Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Teaching our Children to Have a Servant’s Heart

12 Oct

In such a “me first” society, I am trying to raise servant minded children. I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas.

.....and a sprinkle of love

More than anything else I want my children to have a servant’s heart and to have empathy for those who are lost and hurting. I want their eyes to be open to see that life doesn’t revolve around them but life could be better for someone because of them. To serve in the name and love of God and not in the name of their ego and pride. To serve knowing their eternal reward is far better than any worldly award or recognition (Knowing it is by grace they are saved not works-Ephesians 2:8). To put all selfish desires aside, religious beliefs, social class, racial class, and any other worldly obstacle aside and love because He loved us first ( 1 John 4:19). To teach them to be ready to give their coat, to bandage a wound, to give a hug, to offer encouragement, to offer a prayer, a listening ear…

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Shrek Sauce

11 Oct

Sometimes giving things a creative and yes, even gross names inspires little ones to try something new.  Shrek Sauce is nothing more than an avocado dip or spread. With a few variations to the recipe we enjoy this sauce as a sandwich spread or as an alternative to guacamole on burrito/taco night.

This is all you need! Of course adjust ingredients to suit your sized family or
occasion.
2 ripe avocado’s
1 Roma (Plum) tomato
3-4 Tbsp mayo (we used light)
garlic powder to taste
Slice each avocado in half and give the pit a good whack with the knife, give it a twist and the pit should come right out.
Scrape out the flesh of the avocados into a bowl and add the mayo. This is
a smooth sauce so I am using my emulsion blender. You
can use a hand mixer, potato masher, and if ripe enough, a fork.
Mix away until silky smooth.

                                                                               Finely dice the tomato and it and the garlic powder to
                                                   the bowl. I used about a 1/2 tsp of garlic powder but use as
                                                   much or as little as you like.

Serve with chips, spread on a tortilla, or use it as a sandwich spread.
*To use as a sandwich spread I use just the avocado, tomato and mayo.
Shrek Sauce
2 ripe avocado’s
1 Roma tomato
3-4 TBSP mayo
Garlic powder
Slice each avocado in half and give the pit the pit a good whack with your knife to easily remove it. -Scrape out the flesh of the avocados into a bowl and add the mayo. This is a smooth sauce so I am using my emulsion blender. You can use a hand mixer, potato masher, and if ripe enough a fork. Mix away until silky smooth. –Finely dice the tomato and it and the garlic powder to  the bowl. I used about a 1/2 tsp of garlic powder but use as  much or as little as you like.  

Have you creatively named a food or recipe to make it more appealing or fun for your family?  I would love to hear about it.  Leave a comment or a link to your recipe, I would love to see it!  Thanks for visiting!

~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca
Let’s be Pinterest friends!

Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Marriage in Pieces

8 Oct

I don’t think it is the heat of the moment that kills a marriage but the brick wall that is built after.  Holding on to bitterness, being self righteous, and keeping score, little by little builds a wall that is almost impossible to penetrate.

A bad moment can open the door for a real deep intimate connection with your spouse.  You can hold a grudge and spend a miserable day taking cheap jabs at each other and spending a long sleepless night clinging to the edge of the bed, rehashing the events, and dreaming of all the things you will say once morning comes.  You wake mad, miserable, and exhausted.

We come into a marriage as two selfish, sinful individuals learning, constantly, how to put another’s needs above our own.  We easily overlook our own faults but put our spouses under a blinking neon sign.  Yes, at first it all seems easy, you’re still reeling in the newness of your relationship.  We overlook each others faults and we let little things go.  Why?  Because love wins (1 Corinthians 13:4-7).  The mere thought of our spouse’s wonderful qualities seem to outshine their imperfections.  The first fight happens, tears are shed, forgiveness happens quickly, and you feel stronger and closer than ever.  Then each subsequent argument drags out longer, venom flows easier from our mouths, and grudges are born.  When grudges fester bitterness grows.  Brick by brick our walls are being built.

Instead of holding that grudge, take the opportunity to offer a prayer for a tender heart.  Take a minute to think of all the things you love about your spouse.  Somebody has to make the first move and that person can be you.  It can be extremely difficult (trust me, I know), especially if you feel you’re right. At the end of the day I would much rather have a strong thriving marriage than another check on my being right score card.  Think about how releasing your anger and extending understanding will draw you and your spouse to a place of deeper love, trust, and devotion.  Where forgiveness reigns bitterness can’t grow.  Instead of spending a sleepless night fuming spend a sleepless night talking and reaffirming the love and respect in your marriage.  You can smile about how exhausted you’re by your late night.  You’ll both be content because not only did you weather the storm but  grew closer because of it.

Let God work through you, not only when your marriage is for better but especially when it is for worse. Sometimes the only life line is the one you throw, it can be heavy but oh so worth it! Don’t let the enemy win.

I love hearing from you.  How do you keep bitterness from taking root in your marriage?

~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~
Rebecca

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Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

Quick Enchilada Bake

6 Oct

Who doesn’t love a meal that consists of 5 ingredients and one pan?  This girl does!  This meal is perfect for those days when you just want a quick meal with low fuss and minimal mess.  Sit back, get comfy and see just how easy this meal can be.  Enjoy!

4 chicken breasts (about 1 1/2-2 pounds). Sprinkle both sides of chicken
with taco seasoning about a teaspoon per side. Bake in 350 degree oven
for about 35-40 minutes or until cooked through.
While chicken is cooking slice up about 4-5 green onions.
You will need 1 Cup of your favorite cheese. Really, you could use
as much or as little as you like. 1-19oz can of enchilada sauce. This yields
about 2 Cups of sauce. Again use less if you would prefer it less saucy.
We used extra sauce in ours because we served ours with tortillas and
white rice. The extra sauce absorbed into the rice and made it extra yummy!

When chicken is done remove it from the baking pan and dice it up into bite sized pieces. Add the enchilada sauce and mix well. Top with cheese and place back into your 350 degree oven for 20 25 minutes or until the cheese is melted and the mixture is hot and bubbly.

                                                                                                                        

                     When it is done baking sprinkle with the green onions.

            We served ours with white rice rolled in tortillas topped with 
               lettuce and tomatoes. Now for the verdict from some tough critics…

Our little man approves and………
                                                                                                                                                                                    

                  Very enthusiastic thums up from the girls. The hubba hubba hubby
    also gave it a thumbs up.

Recipe

3-4 boneless skinless chicken breasts

1-2 tsp taco seasoning

4-5 green onions thinly sliced

1 C. shredded cheese

1-19oz can enchilada sauce

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.  Place chicken in baking pan and sprinkle both sides with taco seasoning.  Bake 35-40 minutes or until cooked through.  Slice up green onions while chicken is cooking, set aside.  Remove chicken from oven and cut into bite sized pieces.   Return chicken to baking pan and add the enchilada sauce, mix well.  Top with cheese and return it to your 350 degree oven.  Cook an additional 20-25 minutes or until mixture is hot and bubbly and cheese is melted.  Sprinkle with green onion.

Serve as is or on top of crisp shredded lettuce (great low carb meal) or as my family did, with tortillas.  A little less fussy than traditional enchilada’s.  As always, thank you for visiting.  I love to hear from you and to see what you’re cookin’.  If you have a favorite recipe, please share below or add a link, I would love to see it!

~Be Blessed and be a Blessing~

Rebecca

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Linked up with

rhm

      

Copyright © 2013 · All Rights Reserved · www.andasprinkleoflove.com

This is not Heaven

3 Oct

This is a constant reminder for me…….

.....and a sprinkle of love

“The song of the whippoorwill. Let her sing. Let her sing in the dark. let her sing at the dawn. Let her song remind you that you were not made for this place and that there is a place just for you. But until then, be realistic. Lower your expectations of earth. This is not heaven, so don’t expect it to be.”

~Max Lucado~

I just now read that. I had to stop and read it a dozen times. As I sat quietly looking this over, this thought came to my mind-“Will what you sow now be worth reaping in the future?” In Galatians 6:7-10 it says that “for the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.”

When we live for worldly things it creates turmoil and misery in…

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