Free IHOP Pancakes 2-28-2012

Today is National Pancake Day! To celebrate, IHOP is offering a FREE short stack of buttermilk pancakes to all of its guests. For details, check it out HERE.

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God’s Unique Provisions For A Sleep-Deprived Mom

We’re moms…and we’re busy, right? We change diapers, feed babies, wipe noses, kiss boo boos, teach lessons and clean the house. We also make dinner, solve problems, run errands…the list could go  on and on. We often place the needs of our families over our own. Our work is never done. And if you have a new baby….well, your workload just doubled. I think we’d all agree that being a mom is one of the most tiring jobs on the face of the planet.

It is also the most rewarding job. Nothing is better than a little one’s sweet kisses, or the first time your baby smiles. I love when my kids draw me cute pictures then tell me the stories behind everything they drew. Kids are entertaining, funny and so sweet…they are worth every minute of our time.

Recently, I made a goal to spend more time alone with God in prayer. It seemed like every time I tried to start praying, there were constant interuptions. And by praying, I mean really praying, not just the prayers I pray throughout the entire day…but a real soul searching, focusing entirely on God, praising and worshiping kind of prayers, that shut out the entire world.

As a mom, it’s hard to even go to the bathroom without someone yelling “Mom” from outside the door…much less spend anytime alone. Even after my kids are in bed I’m still busy…kids coming down for a drink of water or to use the bathroom. Or having to intervene on an argument that my 5 and 6 year old are having…or chase the three year old back into bed.

I also have to spend that time catching up on all the things that I could’t accomplish throughout the day.

So I began to ask God for more time that I could spend in prayer.

The answer came in the form of a colicky baby. My little girl was born 10  weeks ago and has had problems with colic, reflux and lactose intolerance. At night she will not sleep for more than 15 min. at a time. She insists on being held…and often needs us to keep moving, pacing the floor with her.

I began to pray as I paced the floor with her…really pouring out my heart. I realized that God had granted me my time with Him. And that He would also give me the strength and energy I needed to get through all the coming sleepless nights.

Am I tired? Of course! But, this time that I have to spend in prayer while holding a precious miracle in my arms, is wonderful and peaceful. It gives me time to reflect on the blessings God has placed in my life. I can spend time asking for direction, solutions to certain problems, and guidance in the many roles I have…especially my roles as wife and mother.

I find that God has also provided a way for me to make up some of my lost sleep as well. Often my sweet husband will take a shift at night and he will make sure I get a nap during the day.

My point? If we seek Him and serve Him…God will provide us with what we need, when we need it. It may come in unusual forms…using something we don’t expect. Like a sweet,little colicky baby…and a long, sleepless night. 🙂

How has God provided for you in an unexpected way?

How You Can Help An Evil Scientist Take Over The Tri-State Area

My kids are big fans of Disney’s Phineas and Ferb… Actually, my whole family loves this show.

For those of you unfamiliar with this show, it usually follows two story lines. The main story line follows Phineas and Ferb, two brothers who create these outrageous inventions, have fantastic adventures with their friends while wondering “Where’s Perry?” (their pet platypus).Sister Candace is constantly trying to bust them, but somehow, their inventions magically disappear before their mom ever sees them.

In the alternate story line, Phineas and Ferb’s seemingly normal platypus, Perry, is actually a secret agent. He battles his nemesis, Dr. Doofenshmirtz in each episode. Dr. Doofenshmirtz invents various devices to take over the Tri-State area. Perry usually thwarts him and somehow these events usually result in the disappearance of Phineas and Ferb’s inventions before Candace can bust them.

OK, so now your wondering why I’m telling you about a kids cartoon, right? And what this has to do with you helping an evil scientist?

I have been trying to get rid of processed foods in my family’s diet. Particularly foods that contain high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated oils.

The episode below is a hilarious version of what happens to our bodies when we eat high fructose corn syrup and partially hydrogenated oils. Be patient, it starts with the Phineas and Ferb segment and alternates between the two (connected) story lines.

Part one

Part two

Kool Aid Fudge – An Easy Colorful Treat

This treat is so simple to make! It shouldn’t take more than 5 min. to put it together.

You will need:

12 oz. bag of white baking chips

14 oz can of sweetened condensed milk

1 packet of Kool Aid, whatever flavor you like…I think cherry is the best for this. 🙂

Simply melt the baking chips in the microwave then stir in the sweetened condensed milk and Kool Aid until thoroughly mixed. Spread into a lightly greased  pan an refrigerate until set. After it sets, cut and serve.

They look so pretty! I think the pink looks perfect for spring! 🙂

Linking to:
Somewhat Simple

Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays

Cast Party Wednesday

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Easy Homemade Bread

My family loves homemade bread. It’s frugal, delicious and a lot healthier than most store bought breads.Even though I have a bread maker,  I hardly ever use it. I hate cleaning the thing when it’s done (I’m lazy…I know it. 😉  ). Plus, I always have trouble getting the whole loaf out intact.

Here is a very easy and delicious recipe that has served me well. It is also great if you are in a hurry and don’t have time to let it rise multiple times.

You will need:

1 1/4 oz packet of rapid rise yeast

1 cup lukewarm water

1 egg

1/4 cup sugar

1 tsp. salt

1/4 cup oil

3 cups flour

Dissolve the yeast in lukewarm water. It should look foamy after about 5 min. or so, then it’s ready to add the other ingredients.

Add egg, sugar, salt and oil and mix. Add half of the flour and beat until smooth. Add the rest of the flour and beat again until smooth.

The dough should be a little sticky.

Shape into loaves or dinner rolls and place on greased pan. you can also sprinkle the pan with white cornmeal to help keep it from sticking if you wish. Let it rise until double in size (approx. 45 – 60 min.).  Bake rolls for about 15 min. If you are baking it as a loaf it may take about 30 min. Lower the oven rack to keep the top from burning while the inside cooks.

Enjoy your freshly baked bread! 🙂

Linking to:

Creations by Kara

 

Simple Frugal Valentine’s Day Centerpiece

Seems like just yesterday I still had Christmas decorations up! Oh wait…It was only yesterday that I still had Christmas decorations up.

I know.

But, it was only upstairs…I promise…the downstairs areas were Christmas decor free!

OK, now that I got that off of my chest, on to something for Valentine’s Day. 🙂

This is an inexpensive centerpiece that’s super easy to make.

I bought three 8″ glass candles from the Dollar Tree and one fuzzy flower bush (OK, so I don’t know what kind of flower it was supposed to be, but it looked cool…AND it was red).

I covered the glass candles with burlap squares and tied on white ribbon with the flower inside. See?? Super simple. 🙂

This project cost $4.65 total for the candles, ribbon and flowers!

Happy Valentines Day!

Tasty Corn Chip Candy

Yes, you read that right…CORN CHIPS!

A few weeks ago, I was pregnant and nearing my due date. As I get further along I tend to throw some of my dietary cautions to the wind. This was one of those times. I really wanted something sweet and salty and didn’t feel like running to the store. I dug through my cupboards and came up with a bag of chocolate chips and a bag of corn chips. The crazy thought popped into my head “I wonder if there are any recipes that would use both of these?” 

I found this recipe for Corn Chip Candy. I was a bit skeptical, but being a desperate, candy crazed pregnant woman who would do anything for a hit thought it was worth a try. It was very tasty, indeed! My whole family loves it and asks for it all the time. It’s also easy to make.

You will need:

10 1/2 oz bag corn chips

1 cup white sugar

1 cup light corn syrup (no this is not the same thing as high fructose corn syrup for those of you who may be concerned about this issue)

1 cup peanut butter

1 bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Grease a 10 x 15 inch pan (I usually line it with foil first to make clean up easy). Pour the bag of corn chips in.

In a saucepan bring the sugar and corn syrup to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in peanut butter until smooth.

Pour this over the corn chips. Try to pour evenly so that all the chips are covered. If you have to you can stir the mixture through the chips to make sure they are evenly coated.

Pour the chocolate chips over the corn chip mixture in an even layer. Wait about 10 min or until the heat from the peanut butter mixture melts the chocolate.Spread the chocolate over the top.

I usually pop it into the refrigerator so that the chocolate sets up faster.

After the chocolate sets up, cut or break into pieces and serve! 🙂

Linked to:
smockityfrocks.com

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special

Tip Junkie handmade projects

Cast Party Wednesday