Tuesday, July 31, 2012

{recipe} The Perfect (addicting, non-healthy) Peanut Brittle

The Perfect (addicting, non-healthy) Peanut Brittle

1 c. sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 c. raw peanuts
1 tsp. butter
1/2 c. light corn syrup
1 tsp. baking soda
1/8 tsp. salt
1)  In a 2 quart microwavable glass bowl, mix together sugar, peanuts, syrup, and salt. Microwave for 4 minutes.
2) Stir in the vanilla and butter. Microwave 4 minutes.
3) Stir in baking soda. Pour out onto a silpat or lightly greased cookie sheet.
4) After in hardens, break into pieces, and eat!
*I love to do this with nuts other than peanuts, like almonds or even a mixture of all nuts. Delicious.
Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays  Growing Home 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

the unsafe question

Are you pregnant?
The question caught her off guard. Was her friend joking? She looked down. She knew her uniform was a little tight-it had been a year since she last had to wear it-but did she really look pregnant?

No, of course not, she told her friend.
The seemingly harmless question plagued her all day. Feelings of insecurity, shame, guilt, and ugliness flooded her. With no one to turn to, she had to bear this burden all alone.
This is a true story. The girl that told me this could not tell it without crying. We barely know each other, yet it was tearing her apart so much she just had to get it out; it didn't matter who, she needed someone to listen.
It is surprising just how many women struggle with insecurity and the "shame" of not being pretty.

Everyone is beautiful. We look at man's standards of beauty, but what about God's standards? Shouldn't we be looking at ourselves (and others!) through God's eyes?

Below are favorite posts on the subject

Come Away With Me at SimplyHis.
A Love Letter to My Body at Joy in this Journey

As God Sees at Faith and Simplicity

beauty that cannot be captured in ESPN magazines at To Overflowing
 Life In Bloom Found the Marbles
Photobucket    friday favorite things | finding joy

Monday, July 23, 2012

homeschool chaos

My mom is an expert in the homeschool world. At one point in each of our lives, she has homeschooled every one of her 6 children. When I was a lot younger, she wrote a short story about the life of a homeschool mom, and I want to share that with you today! Enjoy =]
A Day of Homeschooling

The children get up, get dressed, make beds, have breakfast, then do chores and we have devotion.
We make it to school on time if we are not interrupted by phone calls and discipline problems.

We go upstairs. John Z. and Sarah Ann play in the playroom while Steven, Meagan and I go to the schoolroom to begin their lessons. While I am giving instructions on how to do page 6 in English, I hear fussing from the playroom. John Z. and Sarah decide that they want to play with the same toy at the same time. After I get that settled, I go back to Steve and Meagan. They are waiting on me to explain the instructions again. I explain again, trying to remember that they are 5 and 7 and they will  not understand everything the first time. Well, now they understand. They complete page 6, 7, and 8. Now, it's time for a spelling test. Did I hear them groan? As I call out the second word, I hear John's voice from the bathroom, Mom, I need help!!! So I tell Steven and Meagan to read a story in their reader, wanting them to stay occupied until I get back. As I walk to the bathroom, I see Sarah standing there crying, saying I need to go potty. Her being in the potty training stage, she really means Help, I'm all wet. Please put a diaper on me! I look at her and say Sarah, I'll be right back. Wait, what do you have on your face?
I don't know, she says.
Sarah, where did you get that paint? Who left out the watercolors? Sarah, stay right there. John, I'm coming!

So, now, John is settled and asking for a snack. Just a minute please.

As I pick Sarah up to take her downstairs to get changed, I tell Steven and Meagan to stop talking and get out their tablets to practice writing their alphabet. After Sarah is clean and dry again, we go to the kitchen. I notice that the washer has stopped so we reload the washer and dryer, get a snack, and head back upstairs.

John and Sarah are happy again. Back in the schoolroom, I wonder what Steve and Meagan have been doing. They are only on the letter M. One doesn't want to get ahead of the other so they write slowly so they can stay together.

Now, where were we? Oh yeah, a spelling test. We finish the test without any more distractions. We even get through another subject!

The lessons are going well. Who's coming through the door? John Z. and Sarah are saying We're hungry. I look at the clock, it's lunch time.

I tell Steven and Meagan to help John Z. and Sarah Ann clean the playroom while I fix lunch. While walking through the playroom, I step over dolls, tinkertoys, toy cars, crayons, and books. They sure did have a good time. After the room is clean, they can come downstairs to eat. If you don't work, you don't eat.

That is a typical day before lunch. Of course, I left out some things. School is easier after lunch, because John Z. and Sarah Ann still take afternoon naps. Praise the Lord!

If you are thinking about homeschooling, don't let this discourage you! We have good and bad days. Everyone has those anyway.

Homeschooling is worth it when you see your child sitting there reading a library books and you are the one that taught them. You get to hear the oldest child teaching his younger brother how to count.You get to see excitement in their eyes when they learn something new and can't wait to tell Dad when he gets home.

It's a challenge, but there is a feeling of accomplishment when you put away the books at the end of the school year.

I thank the Lord for the opportunity to homeschool.  
Lots of link ups today!
   Share Your Awesome    Miscellany Monday at lowercase letters Blog Button Final

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

{devotion} tugging conviction

I knew I shouldn't have watched it. I ignored the tugging at my soul as I told Sister don't tag me on Facebook at this movie.

That tugging? Conviction.

My holy Savior reminding me, gently, that it wasn't pure and holy.

Yet, I listened to the enemies lies. The movie is harmless, right? It's not going to change the way I think or live. I'm still a good girl. Movies don't affect me.

It's not easy. It's not very pretty either, that tug of war.

When I feel it at my soul, I fight it. But I know I must give in. I must confess. I have to speak my feelings, raw and unedited. Yes, it's painful. No one wants to admit wrong.

 But then....

 After conviction and confession comes sweet healing. Peace and closeness fills my soul. I am in harmony with Him again, with the sin guilt out of the way.

 Proverbs 28:13 He that coverth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

 Don't let tugging conviction and open confession scare you. After comes the blessedness of forgiveness, tearful mercy, wonderful grace, and quiet peace.

 Psalm 32:3-5 When I kept silence my bones grew old through my groaning all day long. For day and night thy hand was heavy upon me: my vitality turned into drought of summer. Selah. I acknowledged my sin unto thee and my iniquity have I not hid. I said, I will confess my transgressions unto the Lord; and thou forgavest the inquity of my sin. Selah.

 Life: Unmasked WIPWednesday Women in the Word Wednesdays

Monday, July 16, 2012

{devotion} burden or banner?

Luke 9:23 Then he said to them all: "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.

When I see myself taking up my cross, it's heavy. I imagine unbearable weight and stumbling. It's a burden after all, right? Isn't that what Jesus means in this verse?

Studying further into this verse, I was astounded. "Take up" here in Luke actually means "to hold high, like a banner, for all to see."

So the cross I bear to follow Jesus is not a heavy burden, but a brazen banner! I've been going about this all wrong. To follow Him is not a heavy yoke, but a banner to proudly wave so all others can know and see HIM.


#75 buttery popcorn, homemade
#77 soft conviction
#78 friend, non-judgemental
#79 mucinex!
#80 19 yr old brother showing maturity
#82 budding friendship

Saturday, July 14, 2012

{recipe} What to do when your Aunt gives you peaches...

Make peach sherbert!

Super simple. A mix between ice cream and sorbet, this recipe is perfect for cooling off these summer days.

Peach Sherbert:
6 perfect peaches
1 1/2 cups Sugar in the Raw
1 can evaporated milk
1/2 cup milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1) peel peaches, cut in half and remove pit. Place peaches in a bowl and cover with 3/4 cup of the natural sugar. Mash together and let sit.
2) Bring to a simmer the milk, evap milk, and rest of the sugar. While waiting on it to heat, puree two cups of the peaches until very smooth. Whisk in the hot milk, vanilla, and salt.
3) Chill until very cold (overnight is best). Churn in an icecream maker.
4) If you have mashed peaches left over after removing two cups, cut into small pieces, and mix into ice cream before freezing.

*If you don't have a wonderful aunt, like I do, to give you peaches, I highly recommed using peaches from a farmer's market rather than a regular grocery store. Produce is usually so much better at the local farmer's market.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

{workout} 14 Days of Pure Insanity

Please welcome my beautiful friend Katie today as she shares her experience with the INSANITY workout!

Lying in the floor, breathing and hoping just to stay alive, I finished the workout, amazed that I could still move and wishing I didn’t have to.  This wasn’t your typical “I ran three miles on the treadmill; oh that was nice” workout; this was “I jumped and squatted and planked for 30 minutes and I’m gonna die” workout.

But I’ve never felt so good!

14 days ago, I started the INSANITY workout DVD’s by Beachbody.  This is what their website claims: “Each INSANITY workout keeps you constantly challenged as you alternate between aerobic and anaerobic intervals performed at your MAX. The result: burn up to 1,000 calories in an hour and get the most insane body in 60 days.” 

Whaaaaaat?!?!  1,000 calories?  I’m in!

My hubby started doing these workouts during his lunch hour and came home moaning and groaning about how sore he was and how he couldn’t make it through even the warmup without stopping.  I kept thinking this was most certainly because he wasn’t in shape like I was, and that if I tried one, I would make it through the whole thing with no problems at all.  It was doubtful I would even break a sweat!  After all, I used the treadmill every other day!

I was wrong.

I started with the Fit Test, which is designed to give you a good starting point and allow you to track your progress throughout the program.  I was on the floor, unable to move, after about 10 minutes.  I’m not exaggerating!  I remember my hubby’s face when he saw my weak little self sitting in the floor; the words “I told you so” were plastered all over it.  And I totally deserved it.

When I want something, I find deep determination to achieve it.  That determination (and a little crazy) is what made me come back to the laptop the next day.  And to think I thought the Fit Test was killer…

For the last 14 days, I have screamed and sweated, winced from soreness, and beat the floor because I could not do even one more burpee, but for the last 14 days, I have seen tremendous changes in my body.  Muscle is being built and my strength is blowing my mind.  I've lost 2 inches off my waist!  I’m actually seeing results!  Big ones!

One point that I have to mention- this workout program is not for someone who has no fitness regimen.  If you’re a beginner and you get winded going up the stairs, do not try this until you’re in better shape!  You need to condition your lungs a bit before you start.

So far, I’m extremely happy with the results I’m getting.  And I’m still alive!  (Ask me how I feel after the 2nd month, which is full of workouts called MAX ______.  I thought this WAS my max!!!!)

See you in 44 days for my final results!

Katie is a southern girl who spends her days loving her hubby and teaching high schoolers about commas and classics. She desires to cultivate relationships and serve her Lord with her whole heart. Oh, and she is slightly addicted to strawberry chapstick. Visit her writing home at Simply[His],  follow her on Facebook, or tweet with her Twitter.

Monday, July 9, 2012

{devotion} Ugly lies or Beautiful truth?

"I just want to work on my abs."

"I just want to lose X inches."

"I really need to work on my thighs."

"I need to get back to how I used to be."
All day long I hear this. All day long I see unhappiness written across faces. All day long I watch women struggle with self-image. It's my job to "fix" them and make them happy again.

These ladies are some of the most beautiful ladies I have known. Yet, Satan plagues them with ugly lies. I get it. I know the battles they face. I took it to the extreme once.

But now I know the truth. and I want to scream at them, "You are beautifully and wonderfully made!"

I love how Paul put it in Romans. He basically says who are we to question HIS work??

Romans 9:20
     But indeed, O man [or woman], who are you to reply against God? Will the thing formed say to him who formed it, "Why have you made me like this?"

When Satan plagues you with lies, whether it's about physical, spiritual, or mental image, exchange those lies for the Lord's healing truth!

Ecclesiastes 3:11a
    He has made everything beautiful in its time.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

bouncing in my head

When starting a blog, it's hard to know where to take it. Do I write about this or that? Will people want to read about this? Can I keep someone's interest with that?

For this blog, I want to write what's on my heart. If it was physically possible for someone to see what bounces around my head all day, it would mainly consist of three things. My healing Savior, health, and food.

So, when you visit An Unfading Beauty, you will be able to find three things:

{devotion}-what God is teaching me at the moment.
{workout}-this will range from a quick workout that can be done at home to fitness articles that I find interesting.
{recipe}-delicious recipes that I want to share with you from my kitchen!

I hope you will enjoy this day to day journey with me. Feel free to ask any questions at all. I'd love to talk. =]

Friday, July 6, 2012

{recipe} Summer Berry Cream Cheese Pound Cake

This is the most moist pound cake I have ever had! Definitely a must try. It keeps well even though I doubt it will be around for long. Get to the kitchen!

Summer Berry Cream Cheese Pound Cake:  yields 2 pound cakes
3 cups sugar
6 oz cream cheese
3 oz butter
6 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp vanilla
3 cups all purpose flour
1 pt whipping cream
fresh berries
1) Blend together softened butter, cream cheese and sugar. Add in eggs one at a time. Mix in vanilla and salt. (the batter should be very light and fluffy at this point) Slowly add in flour alternating with the cream.
2) Gently fold in a generous amount of berries. Pour batter into sprayed loaf pans.
3) Place in a cold oven. Set oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
4) Enjoy!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

{workout} post-holiday burn!

Did everyone have a good 4th? I hope so!

Now, it's time to get back to it. Here is a quick, full-body workout for all you stay-at-home moms, busy college students, or just anybody, really.

Pinned Image

Here's what to do:

7 rounds (as fast as possible) of:

Now, if you try it and absolutely cannot do it, no worries. It can be scaled.
Scale the minute wall sit to thirty seconds, do the plank push-ups on your knees, and modify the burpees. Keep it intense.

Ready, Set, GO!
oh, and have fun =]

*click on the links for demonstrations of the movements.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

{devotion} perfect restoration

Psalm 19:7a The Law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul.

When I am down and depressed, HIS Word restores me.

When I am desensetized to evil, HIS Word builds boundaries.

When I don't know where to turn, HIS Word points the way.

When I am weary, HIS Word revives.

When I don't understand, HIS Word gives wisdom.

When I am in darkness, HIS Word shines.

When I am lonely, HIS Word whispers comfort.

When I am broken, HIS Word bandages.

The Book is there, waiting to be opened. Don't wait!


Come back Thursday for a stay-at-home post holiday workout!

Monday, July 2, 2012

{devotion} thankfullness.

Even in this seemingly unbearable heat with broken air condition, thanks can be given!

#41 witnessing Proverbs 11:24a
#48 vanilla pear cupcake with butterscotch frosting

 #58 1 1/2 hour break for coffee, devotion and reading.

#63 motherly love notes found in diswasher!
#64 gifts from brother #3

#73 sibling talk around pumpkin pie
#76 sweet purple plums, like sugar
 Colossians 3:15 And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful.