Monday, August 27, 2012

Popsicles! Popsicles! Popsicles!


You know you want one!

I don't know why I didn't think of this earlier, I mean, it's been summer! Hello?! But I saw the book the other day; People's Pops at the library, got it, and got obsessed with pops! This book has the best recipes. I want to get this one: Paletas next because it's authentic recipes for Mexican ice pops, shaved ice and aguas frescas! and after making the Peach Jalapeno pop from the People's Pops book I gotta say, I'm hooked on the sweet and spicy pop!


                           click the pic to buy these molds

So, I'm sure that after seeing those pictures you are just DYING to know how to make your own Jalapeno Pop! ... Ok fine, please stop begging! I'll tell you!

Ingredients List
  • 1 lb peaches
  • 1 1/4 cup simple syrup
  • 1 jalapeno pepper
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

Step 1: pick out 5 juicy peaches and a jalapeno pepper

Step 2: cut the peaches in half, set your oven to 350 and bake the beaches (cut side down) in a pan for 20 minutes, let them cool and then remove the pits and blend 'em up. it's ok if it's a little chunky. Baking the peaches helps bring out the flavor and makes the peaches easier to blend.

Step 3: chop up your jalapeno pepper and put it in a sauce pan with the simple syrup (see recipe below), cover & let it simmer for 5-10 minutes, then turn off the heat and let it sit and steep for another 5-10 minutes. The longer you steep the stronger the bite will be. Strain out the jalapenos when you're done. Be careful not to simmer too long as the mixture will evaporate quickly.

Step 4: add everything together into a bowl (with a spout is nice or you can spoon it); the simple syrup jalapeno mixture, the blended peaches and the lemon juice. Mix it all together so it is blended nicely. Taste your mixture as you mix it, it should be sweet with a bite to it.

Step 5: pour your mixture into your molds and freeze for 4-5 hours.

Step 6: EAT & ENJOY! Remember to share! ;-)

Ok here's the simple syrup recipe:
2/3 cup cane sugar (sugar in the raw is what I used)
2/3 cup water
You could just be easy and do 1 cup of each, you can use the mixture in your coffee too.
Bring to a simmer on the stove until the sugar is dissolved and transparent. If you wanted to add any spices or herbs to your mixture you would add it now. You would add your jalapenos at this time.

Yum! Yum! Yum!

Popsicles are just so awesome. And they can be so much better than just your basic boring apple juice or grape juice. Be creative! Or get the book and let it be creative for you. I already made a few different kinds...


These are Blueberry & Buttermilk pops!

Here's Gramps enjoying a pop. He liked it so much he spilled on his white shirt!


Saturday, August 18, 2012

You were born for a dream in the heart of God!

I was watching New Perceptions on Hope Channel this morning and there was something that stood out to me. (Hope Channel is free by the way, if you don't get it just call up your provider and they'll get it set up for you. Sometimes they have to come out and do something to your satellite but that's all). Dwight Nelson is doing a series of sermons about Radical Faith. They're all online so we can all enjoy them. I just tuned in today & missed the other 5, but you betchya I'm gonna go back and listen to the others. The message was fantastic. It reminded me of the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan, which I have not finished but have started reading.

Do you remember the story of the rich young ruler? It is found in Matthew, Mark and Luke. A young ruler asks Jesus what he must do to be saved. He was a good man living a good life; he kept God's commandments. But he wanted more, he wanted a real relationship with God so he asks Jesus what he needed to do.

Mark 10:21 Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.”

This message is not solely for the rich. It is for all of us. We need to get radical. Jesus must have been so sad when the young ruler walked away. He was given the option to become a disciple, there could have been 13 instead of 12, but he was not willing to part with his possessions. 

How many times have we asked God why we don't feel a deeper connection to Him? We pray and pray but nothing seems to happen. Jesus died for us! That's radical! What makes us think that we can get away with any less and still 'get to heaven'. We are special. We are an IMPORTANT part of God's plan for this planet.

I loved this quote below from Dwight Nelson from his sermon this morning. It made me realize how important each and every person is in God's plan.

"There is no one on the planet that can fulfill the destiny that you were born for. You were born for a dream in the heart of God. If you say no that portion of God's dream will never get fulfilled. Nobody can step into your place." 
- Dwight K. Nelson
I thought of this song and thought it was a perfect match.

How special is THAT!?

We all fail. I fail every day. I do well in my own eyes and then just the other day I fell completely flat on my face. I failed so hard it's not even funny. So I had a bit of a pity party and whined to Jesus. Eventually I had to get over it. God knows we cannot do everything right, however that is not a very good excuse. I apologized and I am getting back up and trying again.

"Not because we FEEL it but because He SAYS it. We need to live by FAITH, not by FEELINGS. Faith and Trust in God's word." 

We don't always feel forgiven and that is part of satan's snare. "I am not good enough to enter heaven, I am not good enough to even try to follow Jesus." I have to know that I am forgiven when I ask it because He said so!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Feeding Hummingbirds

I finally snapped a picture of my hummer eating!!! They are so hard to get!

I love hummingbirds. Incase you've never noticed that about me, I do. They are just the coolest birds! Their eggs are the size of a tic tac, how cool is that?! I went on a trip to Glacier National Park and go the chance to see a hummingbird nest live and in person. It was so cool.. Here they are below...

I know it's hard to tell but this next was no bigger than a small fist.

The mix of nectar for hummingbirds is very important. it's a 1:4 ratio - one sugar to four water.

1/2 cup sugar
1 cup hot water
1 cup cold water

Let cool to room temperature and fill feeder.

If you want more just up the amounts: 1 cup sugar, 2 cups hot water, 2 cups cold water
or less: 1/4 cup sugar, 1/2 cup hot water, 1/2 cup cold water

Also, you don't want/need any food coloring. Your feeder will have red to attract the hummingbirds. The food coloring isn't really good for them.

Keeping your feeders clean is also very important. Your need to change the food in the feeder every 3-4 days because the sugar will start to grow mold; especially if your feeder is in the sun. 

When you wash your feeder do not use soap, just hot water is enough. You should also have a nice scrub brush. This is the set that I got, but you really only need the big one because it can also clean the small flowers and other sections as well.

Here is one of my feeders. You want to pick a feeder that will come completely apart to make for easy cleaning. This one is a little difficult because of the shape of the 'balloon'. It can be hard to scrub the edges. This one would be very easy to clean and you wouldn't even need a special brush, you could just use a kitchen scrubber.

Here it is all hung up & put together. The hummers that come to my feeder like the little stands. They don't always use them but sometimes they like to sit and eat.

ant moat

Now this little red thing here is a very useful tool when it comes to hummingbirds. It's called an ant moat, or and guard. It keeps the ants from getting to your feeder. It highly HIGHLY recommend it. In fact, don't even bother putting up a feeder without it. The ants will find your feeder very quickly and as soon as they do they will cover it and discourage your hummers from eating at your house.

You can find them on Amazon or other online stores or you can make your own. I did have one that was excellent, it was clear and enclosed, meaning I had to turn it upside down to add the water. I preferred it because the water didn't evaporate so quickly. With these open ones the water tends to evaporate quite quickly which is frustrating. I'm searching for the one I had before, it's not on Amazon and I haven't found it yet so if you happen to stumble across it please let me know.

Red flowers will help to attract humming birds and butterflies to your house.

Also, a note on bees.. I haven't found a way to keep bees away from my feeders. They can be annoying but they don't seem to deter the hummers from feeding. They seem to take turns. If you look closely at the picture of my feeder at the top of this post you'll see some bees. yikes :) They didn't sting me though.

I hope you try feeding hummingbirds at your house. They are delightful little birds. Once you start feeding them don't stop because they will leave and go elsewhere and you may not be able to bring them back. Hummingbirds to migrate south in the winter (except in California; there is a breed that tends to stay year-round). 

Live webcams can be a lot of fun to watch. Sportsman's Paradise has some excellent wildlife webcams.

I've seen some fantastic hummingbird nest cams but I don't any are active right now. However, there are a few feeder cams; you can just google hummingbird cam and look through them to see which ones you like best. Some are not active, but just keep looking around.

I hope you have fun watching hummingbirds come to your yard!

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Jeffrey & Shawnee got married!

My brother just got married to a wonderful girl! It was a simple & beautiful ceremony with just family and a few friends. Our pastor Bill married them. We spent the day together, getting to know each other's families. It was nice that everyone got along well, she has a very nice and down to earth family.

Shawnee & Jeffrey have moved away from Montana to live in Alabama so that they can go to school. My brother has to go there to get the degree he wants; marine biology, so that he can play with algae. :) 

It sucks that they've moved away but I'm happy for them. They're gonna have fun living closer to the beach for a time and then they'll have to move back to the mountains eventually because I don't think they can stay away for too long!

Here are some pictures I took from the wedding day.

this way to plunge!

getting ready

getting ready



Making it official

Both families combined


I love you

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

a continuous filling

Hello friends. I have just returned from 3 and a half days at the Montana Youth Conference (MTYC) in Eureka Montana.  This is their 4th year putting this on but the first time I have attended.  I wanted to write about my experience before it left me. I am so thankful for what God has allowed me to see this year. I’ve attended two excellent programs in the past 6 months and it has helped me to remain focused. As you may know, it can be hard to stay focused on Jesus and His work if we are not fully engaged and filled with The Holy Spirit.
Speaking of being filled, that was the theme of this years’ MTYC. 

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness for they SHALL be FILLED! Matthew 5:6
A promise from Heaven. If we hunger and thirst after Jesus we will be filled.

This past week was just what I needed to get back on track. I was living day to day and not focusing on Jesus. I was cramming in my Sabbath School lessons on Friday nights and Saturday mornings instead of working on them throughout the week. Granted I’ve been very busy. I’ve spent this past month moving and packing up and entire house with my mom and other family. But that is an excuse and it’s not even a very good one. God should always be first in my life.
So I went to MTYC. If you know me at all you know that I’m a “slow friend maker”. Everyone there either already knew a bunch of people or they came with someone. For the first few days I felt out of place socially but still enjoyed the daily presentations. I forgot to ask God to help me socialize with everyone. I just kept expecting everyone else to do the work. Well by the time Sabbath rolled around I decided that it was going to be a special Sabbath. I asked God to help me and fill me and work in me. And of course he did. I started being more social and opening up a little.
They even did outreach that day and it was the very first time I’d done anything like that. Wow. It was truly a blessing. Nothing obvious to the human eye came of it but it did something for me. We knocked on people’s doors and talked to them… SCARY! But I did it and I praise God for that.
And not only that… I had another triumph. The day I left I had some extra Glow booklets. I stopped at a gas station about 3 minutes after leaving the church. After spending 4 days in the church and with other MTYC youth, walking into a gas station felt like another world. I felt like I was a foreigner in another land. But I had decided that it was going to be the first time I gave out a Glow booklet on my own. I was so scared but God gave me the courage and I did it. I gave it to the clerk… and then ran out of the gas station!!! But I felt so good!
All the way home I prayed. I’d listen to music and talk to God. The whole 4 hour drive home God prompted me every hour to speak with Him. It was amazing. And since returning home He has reminded me to stay connected with Him. I have had my shortcomings as I always do, but I am determined to walk in faith with God and increase my walk daily. Some days have been more difficult than others.
I have also discovered It’s been a blessing. I’m a brain person and I love to learn. I love filling my brain with God’s teachings. The Bible is SO FULL of information! It’s so deep and intricate and I love it! Somehow there is always more to learn.
Well that is all I can write for now. My aim is to continue learning and I hope that I may share some of my thoughts. Thank you for allowing me to share this little story. I’ve been blessed. May God also bless you in your life with what He knows best you need.