10/16/18

Whoopie Pie Cake

Chocolate comes from cocoa,
which is a tree. . .
so that makes it a plant.
Chocolate is salad, my friends!


Hello, lovelies!
Today I have an oh-so-tasty cake
that is sure to tickle your taste buds with sweet yumminess.
Pull up a chair, my friends,
and let me pour you a cup of tea.
Now let's get to baking!


Here is what we will need:

- - CAKE - -
1 box Chocolate cake mix 
(prepared per package directions) + 1 extra egg
cocoa powder for dusting the pan

- - FILLING - -
1 cup butter, room temperature
2 cups Marshmallow Fluff
3 cups powdered sugar

- - GANACHE - -
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°
Grease 2 9×13 sized pans with butter 
and dust with cocoa powder, set aside.
Prepare cake according to package directions, 
but add in an extra egg to the mix.
Split the batter evenly between the 2 pans 
and bake for 15-20 minutes, 
or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Allow cakes to cool completely.

Let's make some mmm...mmm good filling!
In stand mixer beat butter and Fluff together until smooth.
Turn mixer to low 
and slowly add in powdered sugar. 
Turning mixer back up
and continue mixing for 30-60 seconds until smooth.
Spread the filling on top of one of the cakes. 
Top the filling with the other cake.

Finally, for the ganache. . .
In small saucepan bring the heavy cream to almost a boil. 
Remove from heat and stir in chocolate chips. 
Allow to cool for 10 minutes and then pour over top of cake.
Dust with powdered sugar, if you so desire.


I found this delicious recipe here.
Mine definitely does not look like hers
and I have to tell you that I lost part of my cake
when I tried to take it out of the pan.
I was able to trim it down in size and
thankfully my little mishap didn't take away 
from the taste of this cake
because it was simply delicious!


Have a beautiful and sweet day!
{{{hugs}}}

Dear Chocolate,
I love you. . .
A lot. . .
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10/14/18

Golden Harps Are Sounding

 For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, 
which are the figures of the true; 
but into heaven itself, 
now to appear in the presence of God for us.
- - Hebrews 9:24 - -


Golden harps are sounding, angel voices ring,
pearly gates are opened, opened for the King:
Christ, the King of glory, Jesus, King of love,
is gone up in triumph to his throne above.

He who came to save us, he who bled and died,
now is crowned with glory at his Father's side.
Nevermore to suffer, nevermore to die,
Jesus, King of glory, is gone up on high.

Praying for his children in that blessed place,
calling them to glory, sending them his grace;
his bright home preparing, faithful ones for you;
Jesus ever liveth, ever loveth too.

- - Chorus - -
All his work is ended, joyfully we sing:
Jesus hath ascended: glory to our King!
- - Frances R. Havergal - -


The author, Frances J. Havergal,
wrote this Ascension Day hymn
especially for a group of children
while visiting their school.
It is said to have been written 
within the space of ten minutes.
Golden Harps Are Sounding
is one of the few hymns for which Miss Havergal
also composed her own tune, "Herma."
- - Amazing Grace - Kenneth W. Osbeck - -


Lift up your heads, O ye gates; 
and be ye lift up, ye everlasting doors; 
and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? 
The Lord strong and mighty, 
the Lord mighty in battle.
Lift up your heads, O ye gates; 
even lift them up, ye everlasting doors; 
and the King of glory shall come in.
Who is this King of glory? 
The Lord of hosts, 
he is the King of glory. 
Selah.
- - Psalm 24:7-10 - -


Have a most blessed Lord's Day!
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10/12/18

Fashion Friday

Sweaters are just blankets
you can wear to work.


Hello, and Happy Friday, 
sweet friends!
I trust you had a wonderful week
and I hope your weekend is extra beautiful.
We had our first snow yesterday
and I thought I would share a few photos with you.



We enjoyed seeing the big snowflakes
falling from the sky.
My son played in the snow 
and came inside completely soaked.
It was a very wet snow
which later turned to rain.



Thank you for joining me for another Fashion Friday.
Today I thought I would share a favorite outfit of mine.


This sweater is one I wear often.
It can be dressed up or down
and it's ever so warm and cozy.
It really does feel like a soft blanket.


Here is what my outfit consists of:

- - Sweater - -
Old Navy

- - Black Jeans - -
Old Navy

- - Black Top - -
Wal-Mart

- - Booties - -
Francescas


- - Necklace - -
A gift from a friend
all the way from Australia


With the crispness of Fall,
comes a sense of change-
and the change to mix up your look.

Sweet Hanny popped in
to say "Hello!"


Do you have a favorite sweater
that you liked to wrap yourself up in?

Have a delightful weekend, friends!
{{{hugs}}}
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10/11/18

A Secret To Die For - Book Review

Psychologist Grace Callahan has no idea that she has a secret-
one worth killing for. 
But when she finds out one of her clients has been murdered, 
she quickly realizes that the computer security specialist 
wasn't simply suffering from paranoia.

Detective Nate Quinn has just been cleared for active duty 
after a bombing killed eighteen people, including his partner, 
and left him dealing with PTSD. 
His first case back on the job involves the murder of Stephen Shaw, 
and his only lead turns out to be an old friend, Grace Callahan-
and her life is in grave danger. 
Someone believes Shaw gave his psychologist information before he died. 
Information they are willing to kill for.

With her signature pulse-pounding suspense, 
Lisa Harris takes readers deep into the heart of fear 
in this race against the clock.


My Thoughts
I must confess that I have mixed feelings about
A Secret To Die For.
First of all, I enjoy Lisa Harris
and I have read many of her novels.
Her writing is very good 
and the books I have read by her 
have always kept me intrigued and on the edge of my seat.
Unfortunately, that didn't happen with 
A Secret To Die For.

I enjoyed Grace's character
and appreciated her strong spirit and tenacity.
She was thrown a lot of curve balls
both in the past and the present,
and she used those experiences and heartaches
to grow in her faith.
She overcame a lot through the healing
of love and forgiveness found in the Lord.

As for Nate, 
I just didn't "connect" with him.
Honestly, I'm not sure why
though I suppose it could be because
his character seemed to swing back and forth.
One minute he is a competent cop
and the next minute I am wondering 
how he ever became a police officer.
His character seemed flawed
in the sense that there were too many little things
that took away from his true personality.
Nate felt incomplete,
if that makes sense.

The suspense was so-so for me.
I don't know, my friends. . .
the story was just lacking.
There were moments that seemed far too unrealistic
and not fully thought out.
Finally, the romance happened much too quick.
I understand that Grace and Nate knew each other from college,
but I just didn't "feel" the love that grew between them
throughout the pages.

Like I said,
I love Lisa Harris as a writer
and I will continue to support her,
but A Secret To Die For
was not my cup of tea.
That isn't to say you will not enjoy it.
We all have different tastes
when it comes to books.

** I was given a free copy of this book from Revell Publishers for an honest review.
All thoughts are my own. No other compensation was received. 
Thank you Revell! **

About the Author
Lisa Harris is a bestselling author, 
a Christy Award winner, 
and the winner of the Best Inspirational Suspense Novel 
from Romantic Times for her novels Blood Covenant and Vendetta. 
The author of more than thirty books, 
including Vendetta, Missing, Pursued, Vanishing Point, 
and the Southern Crimes series, 
Harris and her family have spent almost fifteen years 
living as missionaries in southern Africa. 
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10/9/18

Embroidered Owl Pillow

Wise old owl
lived in an oak;
the more he saw
the less he spoke;
the less he spoke
the more he heard:
why can't we all
be like that bird.
- - Edward Hersey Richards - -


A happy hello to you!
Today I will be sharing a sweet and simple owl pillow
that is made from soft felt.

Supplies Needed:
felt
beads
small felt flowers
embroidery thread
sewing needle
scissors
batting
sewing machine
hot glue gun and glue or fabric glue

For the owl body you will need to cut out a piece of small felt 
like the one pictured below- 
mine was probably about 3-inches across and 4-inches down.
I  rounded the bottom and made two pointy tips at the top.

Two small circles for the eyes and two somewhat beads
{the beads will be used on top of the round circles}

Two tear drop shapes for the wings - about an inch in size.

A small {very small} triangle for the nose.


For the pillow you need one sheet of felt cut in half.

For the branch cut out a piece of felt like the one pictured below.

And don't forget to cut out some leaves - I used five on my branch
{every shape was cut by "eyeing" them- 
the shapes don't have to be perfect}


Thread your sewing needle with the embroidery thread
and sew the branch onto the top piece of the pillow.
Then, sew on the leaves.
Make sure you don't get the branch or leaves too close to the edge 
since you will need about about 1/4-inch off the edge
for sewing your pillow together.


Next, sew the owl onto the branch.
Once the owl is on you will want to sew on the wings and felt eyes.
Add the beads on top of the felt eyes.
The nose will be glued on since it's such a small piece.

If you want and so desire,
you can add a little embroidery detail to the middle of your owl.


For a charming touch you can sew a sweet heart 
onto the back piece of the pillow.


Finally, glue on the small flowers 
where the leaves meet the branch.

Pin the two pillow pieces together and sew along the edge
{you can use your sewing machine which is what I did 
or you can hand sew the pieces together}.

Leave a small opening to fill with the batting; 
sew closed.


And voila!
You're done :)


You now have a darling little owl pillow 
that is sure to bring a smile to someone's face.


These pillows make thoughtful gifts for special friends and loved ones
or they are perfect for adding some extra charm to your home.


I hope you enjoyed this fun sewing tutorial
and I hope you're able to make your own owl pillow.


I want to thank each and every one of you
for the kind and loving sentiments 
concerning the passing of my grandfather.
All of you are so precious
and your sincerity has greatly touched my heart.
Thank you for the sweet thoughts and wonderful prayers.
Grandpa celebrated his 91st birthday a few weeks ago.
He lived a full life
and now he is with his beloved Savior 
and "his dear Betty."

Love and hugs to you friends!
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10/7/18

When Love Shines In

True Christian love
always seeks to lighten the burden of others
and to bring happiness into their lives.
- - Kenneth W. Osbeck - -


Jesus comes with pow’r to gladden,
When love shines in,
Every life that woe can sadden,
When love shines in.
Love will teach us how to pray,
Love will drive the gloom away,
Turn our darkness into day,
When love shines in.

How the world will grow with beauty,
When love shines in,
And the heart rejoice in duty,
When love shines in.
Trials may be sanctified,
And the soul in peace abide,
Life will all be glorified,
When love shines in.


Darkest sorrow will grow brighter,
When love shines in,
And the heaviest burden lighter,
When love shines in.
’Tis the glory that will throw
Light to show us where to go;
Oh, the heart shall blessing know,
When love shines in.

We may have unfading splendor,
When love shines in,
And a friendship true and tender,
When love shines in.
When earth’s vict’ries shall be won,
And our life in Heav’n begun,
There will be no need of sun,
When love shines in.


- - Refrain - -
When love shines in,
When love shines in,
How the heart is tuned to singing,
When love shines in;
When love shines in,
When love shines in,
Joy and peace to others bringing,
When love shines in.
- - Carrie E. Breck - -


Our emotional soundness and even our physical health
depend on the quality of our love for God.
And as a result, we gain an attitude of love
and concern for humanity.
Negative feelings of hate, anger, and selfishness
can destroy the well-being of any individual.
How important it is to allow God's love to shine into our lives,
not only for the good it brings to others
but also for the health it brings to our own lives.
- - Kenneth W. Osbeck - -


Let your light so shine before men, 
that they may see your good works, 
and glorify your Father which is in heaven.
- - Matthew 5:16 - - 

But the path of the just is as the shining light, 
that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.
- - Proverbs 4:18 - - 

Giving thanks unto the Father, 
which hath made us meet 
to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.
- - Colossians 1:12 - -


Dear friends,
the hymn I shared today seemed fitting
and I must say that these particular lines touched my heart,

Darkest sorrow will grow brighter,
When love shines in,
And the heaviest burden lighter,
When love shines in.

You see, just yesterday I received the news
that my dear grandfather passed away.
It was very unexpected.
Darkest sorrow will indeed grow brighter
when love shines in.
I am thankful for the love God pours upon our heavy hearts.

Have a most beautiful Lord's Day!
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10/5/18

Apple Butter Week: Apple Butter Snickerdoodles

Cookies
make the world
a better place.


A happy hello to you, friends!
On Monday I shared an apple butter pie recipe,
on Wednesday I shared some apple butter streusel muffins,
and today I am going to share apple butter snickerdoodles.

I made my own apple butter for the apple butter recipes 
and you can find that recipe by clicking HERE.

Now let's make some cookies,
beautiful friends of mine!

- - Ingredients - -
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup butter softened
1 1/4 cup granulated sugar + 1/3 cup divided
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup apple butter
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon + 1 teaspoon divided

Whisk flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl. 
Set aside.
Cream butter and 1 1/4 cups sugar in a mixer until fluffy. 
Mix in eggs, vanilla, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, and apple butter.
Beat just until mixed. 
Add in flour mixture and mix until just blended together. 

Chill your dough at least 4 hours.
This dough must be cold before baking. 

Because of all the butter and apple butter, 
the cookies will spread quite a bit if you skip the chilling!
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Line cookie sheets with parchment.
Place 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1/3 cup sugar in a small bowl.
Scoop balls of cookie dough
 and roll them in the cinnamon sugar.
Place on your cookie sheet. 
Bake cookies for 11-12 minutes for slightly underdone, 
13-14 minutes for fully done.
Cool slightly before removing from cookie sheets.
- - ENJOY - -


Today Me will live in the moment
unless it's unpleasant.
In which case
Me will eat a cookie.
- - Cookie Monster - -


Thank you for joining me this week,
dear friends.
I hope you enjoyed the apple butter recipes.

Also, I had a little glitch in my shop
which was blocking people from ordering anything.
I wanted to let you know that the problem has been resolved.
And because of the little "hiccup"
I am extending my sale until this coming Sunday.
Receive 25% off your order
by using the code:
OCTOBER
when you check out.

Sweet hugs to you!
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10/3/18

Apple Butter Week: Apple Butter Streusel Muffins

Have a muffin,
sweet friends.


I'm so glad you're here,
lovely friends and readers.
On Monday I shared an apple butter pie recipe
and today I have an apple butter streusel muffin recipe
that is sure to tickle your taste buds.

I made my own apple butter for the apple butter recipes 
that I'm sharing this week
and you can find that recipe by clicking HERE.
Shall we get to baking. . .


- - Muffins - -
2 cups flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup oil
1/3 cup apple butter

- - Streusel - -
1/2 cup flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
4 tablespoons butter (softened)

- - Glaze - -
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1-2 tablespoons milk

In a small bowl, combine the flour, sugar, 
baking powder, cinnamon and salt. 
In another bowl, mix the egg, milk, and oil. 
Add the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients 
and mix just until combined. 
Do not overmix!

For the streusel, 
combine the flour, cinnamon, and sugar.
Cut in the softened butter until you have a crumbly mix 
and the butter is all mixed in.
Spray jumbo muffin tins with cooking spray or line with cupcake liners
and spoon batter into the bottom of each cup. 
Put a tablespoon of apple butter over top the batter. 
Then sprinkle some streusel topping over the apple butter.
Bake at 425 for 5 minutes, 
then reduce the oven temperature to 375 
and cook for an additional 15 - 20 minutes. 
The muffins are done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.
Mix the powdered sugar and milk together until smooth, 
then drizzle with a spoon over top the muffins.


A tasty treat 
with a cup of afternoon coffee or tea.


*** LAST DAY ***
Please enjoy 25% off your order
plus free shipping at
Simply use the code:
OCTOBER
when you check out.

I'll "see" you on Friday
for the last apple butter recipe.

Have a beautiful day, friends!
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10/1/18

Apple Butter Week: Apple Butter Pie

Oh. . .
Pilate's?!
I thought you said
PIE and LATTES!


My dear friends,
this apple butter pie is a delicious treat 
and it's perfect to enjoy during the fall. . .
actually, it's perfect to enjoy any time of the year.
It is similar to pumpkin pie,
but it's made with apple butter instead.
And of course it's oh-so-tasty with homemade apple butter.

We have two apple trees in our yard
so my son and I picked a basket full of apples
for this tasty apple butter recipe.

- - Slow Cooker Apple Butter - -
3 pounds of your favorite apples
1/3 cup honey
1/3 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

Peel, core and roughly chop the apples.
In the bottom of a slow cooker
stir together the honey, sugar, and spices.
Add the apples, and stir to coat.
Cook on low for 6-7 hours. 
Remove the lid, and stir until the apple fall apart. 
Continue cooking with the lid off for 30-60 minutes, 
or until the apple butter thickens slightly.
Store covered in the fridge for up to 3 weeks.


- - Apple Butter Pie - -
1/2 cup apple butter 
1 egg, beaten
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon flour
2 cups evaporated milk
2 teaspoons apple pie spice 
pie crust
fresh whipped cream
Cinnamon sugar, for dusting, optional

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees F. 

Make your favorite pie crust
or use a refrigerated crust if you are short on time.
Roll it out and place it in a pie pan.

In a large bowl, whisk together the apple butter, egg,
sugar, flour, evaporated milk and spices
until blended and smooth.
Pour into the prepared pie shell.
Bake for approx. 10 minutes,
then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F
and bake for 35-40 minutes,
or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.
The pie will continue to set up as it cools.
Cool the pie completely before garnishing with fresh whipped cream
and dusting with cinnamon sugar, if desired.


Please cut my pie into four pieces. . .
I don't think I could eat eight.

You are the apple
of my pie.


Stop by on Wednesday and Friday, my friends,
as I will be sharing more apple butter recipes.
Mmm. . .Mmm. . .good!
{{{hugs}}}

Happy October, lovelies!

In honor of the 1st day of October
please enjoy 25% off your order
plus free shipping at
Rose Petal Blessings.
Simply use the code:
OCTOBER
when you check out.
Offer is good until Wednesday, October 3rd.

I'm so glad I live in a world
where there are Octobers.
- - Anne of Green Gables - -
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