Advent season

I find myself with thoughts of preparation, though out the Advent season.

I make myself lists, because my brain is so full of “things to do.”

First, there is the preparing of our house! Decorations, lights!

(I have to keep track of the little Nativity Set pieces this year… someone keeps walking off with baby Jesus.)

Then there is the baking preparations…YUM!

Gingerbread Biscotti
Stollen – a German Christmas sweet bread

 

Preparing for the birth of our Savior Jesus – Immanuel “God with us”

First Advent – Our little girl’s kindergarten lit the first candle on Domplatz in Erfurt, Germany.

Through this Advent season, I am reminded of the wonderful gifts God has given us. Most importantly, His son, who comes swaddled and ready to be opened and welcomed into our hearts. He brings hope, joy, and peace to our weary souls. He fills the deepest longings within us. He satisfies that unquenchable thirst within us. He fills us overflowing, so that we can share His gift with those around us. He brings light into the darkness. And when we have “opened” His gift, we can be His light – we aren’t to keep this gift to ourselves…

“This little light of mine, I’m going to let it shine.

Hide it under a bushel, NO! I’m going to let it shine!”

I am also so thankful for my family.

Time spent together…

Enjoying this season together.

Passing on this Gift to them.

 

Something about fall…

I don’t know what it is, but there is something about fall that makes me want to bake cinnamony goods, serve up a hearty stew with biscuits, drink hot cups of coffee or tea.

It makes me want to feel all cozy inside.

Maybe because the weather is changing?

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Winter is knocking at the door?

I want to hibernate?

Who knows, but whatever it is… it makes me feel all homey.

I think it must do this to others, too, because just yesterday, I was dreaming about sinking my teeth into homemade pumpkin doughnuts with a glaze, when I got a call from my hubby.

“What ingredients do I need to pick up at the store to make those Christmas cinnamon rolls in Paul Hollywood’s cookbook?”

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Uh-oh, he got bit by the fall bug, too! 😉

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Delicious!

Belated Birthday Party!

A little late, but never a reason not to celebrate our 4-year-old girl!

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Our kindergarten likes making a special occasion of each child’s birthday: Celebrating growth, personal achievements, and just making the child feel really special.

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Since we were in the States during our sweetie’s birthday, the kindergarten was unable to celebrate her. Upon our return, they promptly asked if we could have a belated birthday party for her. Sure!

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Last night, my little helper and I baked up mini-chocolate chip cookies, with mini Smarties (similar to M&Ms) instead of chocolate chips, and poked 30-40 grapes and cheese cubes onto toothpicks.

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This morning, we picked out a dress and braided her hair, and set off to kindergarten to celebrate!

On a side note, she got a little confused at first, and thought maybe she was turning 5. Ha! 😀

 

Happy Birthday, Boys!

The snake birthday cake created by a wonderful mom.
The snake birthday cake created by a wonderful mom.
Of course, little sister wants a picture taken, too.
Of course, little sister wants a picture taken, too.
Six years old!
Six years old!
Me too!
Me too!

Its always amazing when the birthdays come around. To think that not too long ago they fit comfortably on my lap, now there’s barely room! Amazing!

Christmas brings out the best in everyone… sort of.

Plum cake

Recently, I picked up a German cookbook from our region, and discovered, much to my delight, that the recipes were divided up by season. My hubby has recollected, many a time, about a plum cake he remembers eating as a child. And since it is plum season, I quickly turned to “September” in my new cookbook, in search of this Plum cake.

Low and behold, I found it, made it, and thoroughly enjoyed it!

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Rhubarb Raspberry Tarts

I’ve been baking again. 🙂

My sister got me this cookbook when I was home last year, and the photo on the front cover has been tempting me ever since.

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And since rhubarb is in season now, I thought I should give it a whirl.

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(Oh boy, oh boy!!)

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The dough is made up from a corn flour, flour, and corn meal base.

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I made up the rhubarb/raspberry compote the day before, so it was all ready to be plopped in the center of the tarts. The original recipe doesn’t call for raspberries. It actually calls for dried hibiscus flowers. I didn’t have any handy, and thought raspberries sounded tastier. 😉

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Ready to go in the oven… but first the freezer over night.

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The end product. Delicious!

Baking pie

I’ve been waiting for rhubarb to go on sale here.

And for the strawberries to be an ok price.

Why you ask?

I’ve been hankering after a Strawberry-Rhubarb pie.

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YUM!

(Good thing I’ve started jogging again!)

The birthday cake

My boys love cars.

And Cars. 🙂

So when I was trying to think of a “special” birthday cake, I decided I should do a car theme.

Growing up, my mom would always make me a “special” birthday cake. Every year I was excited to see what she would come up with. It always had some sort of treat on it, like candy or a toy, and it would have a theme. My mom is super-creative (although, she would humbly disagree). I had her making me “special” birthday cakes all the way up to when I left for college. I guess I’m just a kid at heart. 🙂

And I love surprises. 🙂

Anyway, inspired by my mother’s genius, here is what I came up with. Enjoy!

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Thanks to Auntie E, we had some nice cake toppers. :)
Thanks to Auntie E, we had some nice cake toppers. 🙂

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Yum!

The End.

I can’t seem to get the ball rolling…

Well, here I am again.

After another long pause.

I am all for and I do want to get into a regular habit of posting on my blog… it’s just, life keeps getting in my way. Or rather, other things have trump over my blog.

For the last 18 days, we have had sick children in our house. That means we are up in the night, leaving us less energy during the day light hours. But we are still functioning and hope that we are seeing the light at the end of this sick tunnel.

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One of our boy’s classes had a special performance and coffee/cake time for the parents this last week. I unfortunately couldn’t go, because I had a sick baby at home, but sent my hubby with some banana bread and a camera to document this momentous event for me. He was our little tambourine man, and did awesome!! Right on the beat. 🙂

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We also hosted an ‘open house’ for our church this Sunday. I baked throughout the week, and had cookies and 2 German cheese cakes and lots of other snacks for our guests. About 10 people came and we enjoyed the afternoon together chatting, eating cake and sipping coffee. (Love that part of German culture!!)

Raspberry and blueberry "Quark" cake
Raspberry and blueberry “Quark” cake

As I type, my sick baby is sleeping on the bed, with one of my boys “looking after” her. Sweetness.

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