More on Adoption and Healing

I want to thank everyone for your support and encouragement after yesterday’s emotional post! I wasn’t feeling as emotional as I wrote it, because it had been a month since the meeting. But today I’m feeling it! The tears, the joy, so many thoughts running through my head! Life really is so hard, and it will be such a joy to receive total and complete healing one day when I meet my Savior…I can’t wait for heaven and the new earth!

But for now, I must give my hurts and fears to Him, and take time to enjoy the blessings and healing He is bringing to me at this moment. He’s been with me this far, and He’s with me still! There are moments I never thought I would see with family members,  and there are moments I am stilling praying I will see one day. But God is faithful. He is always here to guide my steps…and my emotions. :> I’m so thankful for His comfort and love for me. Through everything in my life, I’ve always known He was there with me, like the Footprints in the Sand, and the one who’s hand I hold everywhere I go.

Ever since I had to make the difficult decision between obedience to head to the mission field in Ireland as planned, and my potential (actual) husband I had just met, 18 years ago, I have loved this verse. Why? Because I chose to obey God over my own desire, and he rewarded me with the desire of heart, which was also His will.

“Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4

It doesn’t say he’ll give you whatever you want, so do what you want. It says DELIGHT in HIM. If you do, His desires will become your desires! He had already told me that guy would be my husband, but I wanted to hold on for dear life so I wouldn’t lose Him. God wanted me to TRUST HIM and OBEY, instead of changing my mind out of fear. What blessings I would have missed if I hadn’t gone! And I would have missed blessings if I hadn’t been brave enough to meet with my very first mother this summer! I always hold on to the scripture that says, ” He will restore the years of the locust,” because I’ve had a lot of locust years in my lifetime, but that verse gives me hope. And I’ve already seen some of His restoration and I’m thankful.

Thanks for allowing me to ramble on a bit in the aftermath of an emotional experience!

                                                       Source: via Serina on Pinterest

My Birth Mother

There were several emotional events on our Oregon trip in July, and meeting with my birth mother was one of them. I actually met her when I was in high school and we spent a couple of years getting together periodically, but it ended for reasons I’m not really sure about. I’ve heard different stories from a couple of people. Anyway, We’ve been emailing each other for about a year and a half, and wanting to meet up, so this seemed like a good time since we’d be in Oregon. I’ve dealt with a lot of betrayal with family members, so wanted to wait awhile and see if I could trust her.

I’ve been learning so many things from her about my past! It’s been fun, exciting and sometimes a bit sad. But for the most part, it’s all been very healing. Our meeting went so well that we left much later than planned. I couldn’t believe how comfortable we were visiting together! The best thing about getting to know her? She truly loved us and only meant to send us away temporarily for our protection from someone abusive. You can’t imagine how powerful it is to hear that, unless you’ve been through it yourself!!

I have so much to process now! She wasn’t perfect, and she was a 19 year old girl making a huge decision about her 2 and 3 year old girls. But she did her best to protect us from the type of abuse she herself had to endure. (She couldn’t know that we would still face abuse, as she thought we were in the safest place we could be). It’s very healing to know your 16 year old mother did not kill you, but chose life, then at 19 chose protection and love for her girls. I’m so thankful God was always looking out for us!

It’s always been easy for me to understand the concept and meaning of God adopting us into His family, and EVERYTHING that means. I know what it means to be chosen, adopted, given a new home, etc. It isn’t hard for me to understand that God takes me in and makes me one of His own, just the same as His other children, other followers of Christ. I don’t think I could have made it through all of the heartache I’ve been through without Jesus Christ by my side, and I’m so thankful to have my first mother back in my life!!

I was 18 when I finally saw some of my baby photos!

Recipe Exchange: Chocolate Swiss Roll Cake

So this past weekend was my sweetie’s birthday and I made a Chocolate Roll Cake for him from my Kitchenaid Instruction and Recipe Book. More about that in yesterday’s post. But today is Old Fashioned Recipe Exchange day with the Little House on the Prairie Living linkup, so I thought I’d share the recipe with you.

List of Ingredients

  • 4 eggs, separated
  • 3/4 cup sugar, divided
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 3/4 cup cake flour (cake flour really works best)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • — Whipped Cream Filling —
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • 3 Tbsp sugar



  1. Place egg yolks in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and wire whip to mixer. Turn to Speed 8 and whip until light and lemon colored, about 2 minutes. Continuing on Speed 8, gradually sprinkle in 1/4 cup sugar and vanilla and beat 2 minutes more. Remove from bowl and set aside.
  2. Place egg whites in clean mixer bowl. Attach bowl and wire whip to mixer. Turn to Speed 8 and whip until whites begin to hold shape. Continuing on Speed 8, gradually sprinkle in remaining sugar, whipping until stiff but not dry. Fold egg yolk mixture into egg whites. Sift flour, baking powder, salt and cocoa together. Fold into egg mixture.
  3. Line a 10 1/2 x 15 1/2  x 1-inch jelly roll pan with waxed paper or parchment paper and grease. Pour batter into pan and bake at 375 degrees  F for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from oven and immediately turn onto a towel sprinkled with powdered sugar/icing sugar. Remove waxed paper, and roll cake and towel together; cool completely.
  4. When cool, unroll cake and spread with Whipped Cream Filling. Re-roll and sprinkle with powdered sugar.
  5. To prepare Whipped Cream Filling:
    Place cream and vanilla in mixer bowl. Attach bowl and wire whip to mixer. Turn to Speed 8 and whip until cream begins to thicken. Continuing on Speed 8, gradually sprinkle in sugar, whipping until stiff.Yield: 10 (1-inch-thick) slices

You can use all purpose flour if you have to, but it won’t be as light. Our store didn’t have cake flour, and I didn’t plan ahead enough for a trip into town, so I used all purpose and sifted it 3 times through. I also topped the slices with ganache I made for my father-in-law for Father’s Day.

You could also change the recipe up by adding peppermint oil, coffee, cinnamon, etc.

My gathered ingredients:

The fluffy egg whites:

The fluffy chocolate batter:

All rolled up:


I added special mushrooms (Chocorooms from Cost Plus World Market), some of which I covered with red icing and dots.

And at the last minute we added a skier from the Tahoe Joe’s yummy cake dessert!

We only used 2 candles since there wasn’t much space left on the cake.

The Ganache:

This is actually a pretty easy cake . It just has some careful, specific steps. But don’t be intimidated, try it and enjoy!

Little House Living

I’m also linking up with Prairie Homestead:


And Growing Home Teach Me Tuesdays:

Growing Home

My Sweetie’s Birthday!

We had a busy weekend and one of the fun events was celebrating my sweetie’s birthday. His parents drove the 4 hours to help us celebrate and his 2 requests were a barbeque with steaks, potatoes and salad, and this yummy Chocolate Roll Cake! I think this was the first recipe I made with my Kitchenaid, and he really associates this cake with the machine, like it was made for this cake. Probably just the combination of machine, sugar and men!!

Anyway, he loves this cake and I surprised him by adding some of these cute mushroom cookies from Cost Plus, aka World Market. I covered 3 of them with red icing and added little “sprinkle” dots because we LOVE these mushrooms and they reside in the town where we met! The first card my husband ever gave me had 2 mice sitting atop one. So I knew he would love this surprise…and he did!

We enjoyed our dessert while halfway through the gift opening.

We later added the skier saved from the amazing chocolate cake they serve at Tahoe Joe’s…he fit right in!

How was your weekend?

The Lovely JJ Heller

jj heller

I was so excited to hear my newest favorite singer on the radio for the first time  a few days ago! JJ Heller is amazing and sweet and I just love her music and her heart. She’s fun, loves Christ and has a beautiful voice! If you haven’t heard her before, pop on over to her website and have a listen. It will be well worth your time! She also has a blog! : >

Recipe Exchange: Cracked Wheat Cereal

This week I’m getting back to The Little House on the Prairie Old Fashioned Recipe Exchange. Today’s recipe is  for a much loved hot cereal I fell in love with while working at The Cannon Beach Christian Conference Center in Oregon: yummy Cracked Wheat Cereal! I also met my husband while working there – whoo hoo!! For years the non-crock pot version eluded me, but I can now make it much more quickly, and in smaller portions. And without planning so far ahead. This recipe is sooo easy, with great reward. It’s a hearty, nutty, great breakfast or anytime food!

Cracked Wheat Cereal:

1/4 cup cracked wheat

1 cup water

dash of salt

**Simply put all of these ingredients into a small pot and simmer slowly for a half hour, stirring about every 5 minutes. The cracked wheat should absorb all of the water and thicken into a beautiful cereal. So easy!

**My favorite way to eat this is with a bit of brown sugar, but here are some other ideas:



Apple juice

**I’m also linking up with Raising Homemakers and Tip Me Tuesday with the Tip Junkie, so hop on over and check out their tips!

Your ingredients…

You can buy it here

Or in bulk like I do, since I live too far away now…

Cooking yumminess…

Finished product…

Time to eat!

**What do like to eat for breakfast?

Little House Living

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Harvest America

Our church is gearing up for Harvest America this Sunday! What our country and culture need most is to TURN back to the LORD! And this Sunday, churches around our country are coming together to PRAY for REVIVAL. Even many Christians are turning away from Christ and living for selves. We’re praying for our neighborhoods, our country and our world, for a wake up call to TURN to the ONE TRUE GOD and follow Him and ONLY Him!!

2 Chronicles 7:14   “If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

Harvest America 2012

I forgot my camera yesterday, so these are photos taken with my phone…

Our prayer wall and prayer walk map.

The prayer wall again, where we write down the names of people who haven’t decided to follow Christ. The prayer map is out in the entry so people can choose the streets they will prayer walk. We love them so much, that we want them to have eternal life with God, so we’re praying praying, praying!

I’m excited that our church chose to be involved in this and looking forward to seeing God work through us and the event!

The Art of Crocheting

I really enjoyed this sweet post on crocheting and mentoring today over at Heroines of the Faith! it’s well worth a read! It got me thinking about the art of crocheting also. I first learned to crochet by accompanying my mom and grandma to their knitting/crocheting classes at a community college when I was a kid. I don’t remember anyone actually teaching us, I think we just picked it up by watching everyone every week. I didn’t take to knitting in those days. I think I thought it was to slow and tedious, but I’m starting to finally enjoy it! I’ve been crocheting ever since those classes, and teaching myself new things all the time. And people really love a sweet handmade gift, as demonstrated at a baby shower this weekend by the mom-to-be.

Don’t forget to hop on over and read Heroines of the Faith’s great post!

Are you crafty in some way that encourages you and others?

Here are a few of my most recent creations:


Visit my SHOP today!



Project Bag

I was given this Tote-N-Go “Harper Bag” kit from my cousin-in-law for my birthday? Christmas? Sometimes I confuse them, since they are only 2 days apart! I wanted to get started on it immediately, but alas, although I cut it out within a month or two, I never put it together until just before our July trip. That way I could show it off to the giver! From the beginning I planned that this would be my new project bag, as the origami bag my mother- in-law made for me several years ago out of elephant fabric, is sometimes too small for the project I’m working on.

I LOVE this bag sooooo much! It’s so happy and fun! And pretty easy, if you ignore some of the directions. I also changed it a little bit, shocker. I LOVE changing things to make them more “me” and often make my own patterns.

I didn’t take real DIY photos, but here are the photos I do have of my fabulous reversible bag!!!
Hop over to Tip Junkie to see more projects! And for great homemaking tips, check out Raising Homemakers!

Craft DIY Ideas

Raising Homemakers

Tea and a New Tea Cup

Today I had some yummy tea in my new tea cup! On our Oregon trip I found 2 pretty green tea cups at the thrift store in Seaside. My cousin-in-law actually talked me into them, saying she’d like to use them with me when she visits. I couldn’t decide between the light green and the dark green and they came in sets for $3. So I asked if I could split up the sets and make a mixed set, and she said “yes.” I absolutely LOVE the style of these! Look at that adorable handle! And  what about this pretty tray from Ross?!

I know a lot of people don’t understand the whole tea thing, but it tastes sooooo much better made properly and isn’t as hard as people think to have a special, relaxing teatime. It only took me 5 extra minutes to make my teatime more special with my tea cozy and pretty tray! :>

Do you have a special daily routine?