Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Monday, December 4, 2017

THM Sausage Balls

I found this recipe on the Trim Healthy Mama fb page:

1 lb sausage
2 eggs
1 cup THM Baking Blend
1 cup cheese

Baker at 350 for 35 min.

Sunday, December 3, 2017

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Story of the Day

I like telling stories so I want to incorporate this here on my blog. This is an oldie:

I used to have a nickname. I have a feeling if I ran into this old school mate to this day he'd call me it but I haven't heard it in years. I was 15 and in Driver's Ed. I had told my grandma that I would be getting my driver's permit this particular day and she had determined in her mind to let me drive home when she picked me up. Somehow I was mistaken or something changed and we weren't actually going to get them until the next class. Grandma was sitting in the passenger seat when I came to the van after class let out. She explained that she was going to let me drive because I had gotten my permit. I might've hung my head down a little and said, "Oh, well...we're actually not getting them until next time. She didn't want me to be disappointed so she said, "That's okay. You can go ahead and drive us home anyway." Thrilled, I got behind the wheel! I drove to the exit and put my right blinker on. The next thing I knew my grandma was saying, "Amber...! Suddenly sideways, I was looking down at her and she was looking up at me. "What?!" "You're driving in a ditch!!!" She told me to put the van in park so I did. Then she understood her dilemma because I didn't actually have my driver's permit. She said, "Trade me seats!" We traded and somehow got out. I no longer had to deal with the humiliation because it looked like my grandma had done it. My friend, Dennis, and his parents had been behind us so they said we could sit in their van until the wrecker arrived to pull ours out of the ditch. Sitting in the back seat with Dennis he said, "Amber?" "Mmhmm?" He looked at me with knowing eyes and a smile and said, "You did this, didn't you?" "Mmhmm." The next day at school there he was in the hallway and here came my new nickname that I would hear echoed most any time I saw him through the years, "Hey, Ditch!" ;-)
My grandma and I hooted and hollered all the way home, all the while the back bumper hanging sideways from the car. Grandma had tears in her eyes. All the way until we got home to face my grandpa's furtowed eyebrows. Grandma stopped laughing. And so did I.

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Fun at Grandma Joys

We went to Kansas for some time with Grandma Joy with Aunt Kay Kay, Uncle Jaared, Aunt Steph, Sophie, and Sadie! We had Fatires (how do you spell that?), Grape Leaves, Baklava, Coobie (how do you spell that?), pizza, potato salad, jello, and more. It was a sweet time!

Spirit Come Crucify

We sang this song this morning at church and it really struck me. Minutes before I had been having thoughts that matched the words. This was the first time I've ever heard this song. It's called Spirit Come Crucify and I'm not sure yet who it's by:
"I've been crucified to sin So why do I go back again To the things that put me far from Your throne Come and kill that part of me That won't lay down upon the tree So spirit come crucify"

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Jesus, the Author of Life

I love that name for Him!! I was reading it in Acts 3:15 this morning. My John MacArthur study bible says, "The Greek word for 'author' means originator, pioneer, or beginner of something. It describes Jesus as the Divine Originator of life."
The Greatest Story Ever Told that God, Himself, would humbly come down from heaven as a baby to be like one of us, yet without sin, to live a perfect life that we never could so that He could take the punishment we deserve for our sin and rescue us and make a way for us to be with Him and be called His children.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Monday, November 20, 2017

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Thursday, November 16, 2017

The Kids ~ 2017~

This is the second year Derrick's taken the kids to Tractor Days. They all picked their colors and made ropes. Derrick  is a pretty good photographer! That doesn't come as a surprise because, well, he's good at a lot of things!


We came here on our way home from our Florida trip with Gigi and the cousins. It's in Mississippi and I absolutely love this place! You walk into a wonderful atmosphere with Christian music and videos playing (at least on the Sunday we came). They even have a sign above their entrance that says something like, "If you feel the Lord's Presence here, it's because It is!" They serve lots of gluten free food, including the best catfish, sweet tea in oversized metal mugs, and they sold handmade and wooden gifts. We brought home a wooden Lazy Susan that says, "As for me and my House, we will Serve the Lord." It is on our dining table. It is my hope that we come through there again!

After Derrick's Triathlon

We enjoy Toby Keith's restaurant. We had stayed in OKC for Derrick's Redman Triathlon and finished our day there. It was a fun-filled trip!

Bella and Cam's Birthday Party

This was such a special day!

Monday, November 13, 2017

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Shepherd's Cross 2017

We love going to Shepherd's Cross for different events throughout the year!

The Fragility of Life

My uncle just died. So suddenly. None of us got to give a proper goodbye. I remember him laughing and having such joy that I honestly believe he'd have no regret over the kind of goodbye he gave us all. He went to sleep and he didn't wake up. None of us have any guarantee of tomorrow. At least not here on this earth. So many people said the same things about him- his joy, his teasing, his laughter, his gentleness. He was a teddy bear of a good ol' boy. I last saw him on Easter and we actually snapped a picture of it! You see we sometimes don't know when it'll be the last sentence we ever said to a loved one. So unpredictable, so out of our hands. Marriages break. Twin towers get crashed into by terrorists. Hurricanes go way beyond the bounds of the waters. The beautiful rose I grabbed from my Uncle's funeral faded and died. People stop being your friend. We hurt even those we love the most. We get rejected. The grass fades and the flower withers. Get over insecurity by serving others. My friend said to serve others so hard that you fall into bed "too tired to take your makeup off tired." What is wrong with this world? Something isn't right. You look around and you can see remnants. Lots of remnants but mixed with ugliness, evil, loss, pain, suffering. We live in a fallen world. This is not my home. I took a friend's idea of writing 100 things about my husband as she had done for hers. Then I carried this onto writing 100 things about a loved one and reading it at their funerals. I actually got to read one to my grandpa but he was dying and could only half-heartedly enjoy it. And I got to thinking, "Why in the world don't I write these things when they are still living? When they can hear or read these words and enjoy them?!" It's like they say- We must hold each other tighter. Tell each other we love each other. So it means read that book or play that game that the child asked you to. Even if you're bone tired. Sometimes choose that last minute run to the park with friends instead of vacuuming that carpet. Linger long over the scent of a freshly bathed babe. Look your 9- year old in the eye and give your full attention when she's telling that funny story and laugh too. A real laugh that communicates you've listened. It means listening to that teenager's heart when its late at night and you really would rather be laying your head on that pillow. Make normal things just a bit fancier and special. Send the sweet letter or text when it comes to your mind or give a quick phone call to let someone know you're thinking of them. Say your sorry just as quick as you can when you're wrong. Forgive ridiculously. But anyway- how'd we get in this mess? Why does our coffee grow cold, our fruit of our own womb scowl and cross their arms at us, why is life so stinking hard sometimes? Why do we have to hear of children starving to death, the unspeakable evils that happen to some, and why do the family over there (or we) have a child die of leukemia? Maybe it's something on a small daily level. There's mold that grows too soon on our raspberries and a floor that has to be swept for the 3rd time of the day... Or suddenly our own mood sours and we yell at a dear one of ours because of our own impatience.  And then there's the good- that day your kid makes you real proud, the cream in your coffee just hitting the spot, the cottony, comfy bed that allows you that much needed rest, the peaks that come in marriage when you're not down in the valley, sitting and savoring God's word in your comfy chair... To be continued...

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Friday, July 28, 2017

An Easy Dinner

This is perfect for an easy dinner! My family loves it and especially with lots of parmesan. You can add garlic bread, salad, or both. Cameron had an eye doctor appointment, I made a grocery trip, and there was very little time to make dinner but I'm happy and everyone is on their way to being contentedly stuffed. 😊

Thursday, July 27, 2017


I'm learning so much in this area and mostly because it is a sheer necessity! I love that she says she prays to be ruthless and for wisdom in what to keep/give...This is what I do! I feel like I get more ruthless over time and don't feel like I've ever been ruthless enough. Before this new school year begins, my goal is to be more ruthless than ever! I don't want the stuff to get in the way of being with my family or the time we're going to need for things such as Biology and Algebra I!!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Love is Without "Heat in Spirit"

Charity meaning love.

1 Corinthians 13:1-13
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not
charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.
And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries,
and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.
And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give
my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing. Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily
provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things,
believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things. Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.
For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which
is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child,
I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now
I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.”

Love will dispose men to meekness and gentleness in their carriage toward their neighbors, and not to treat them with passion or violence or heat of spirit; but with moderation and calmness and kindness. It will check and restrain everything like a bitter spirit; for love has no bitterness in it, but is a gentle and sweet disposition and affection of the soul. It will pre- vent broils and quarrels, and will dispose men to peaceableness and to forgive injurious treatment received from others; as it is said in Proverbs 10:12, “Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.”

Monday, July 17, 2017

Our Little Fish

Noah is getting pretty good in the pool!

Bailey is Still Funny...I Think

Bailey after reading some Cameronisms- "Why don't you ever post funny things I say any more?"
Me-"Oh....Do you still say funny things?"
:-D Actually, he does like to joke. I'll have to keep my eye out for them...

Gift #22

I am thankful for the great neighborhood that we live in. -Bailey's Pick

Hildebrant Presidents

The phone rang and Bailey answered it:
Bailey: "Hildebrant residence."
Cameron (sitting at the table eating his food): (In a serious tone) "Presidents?" A pause. "We're not Presidents."


We were taking a walk around the neighborhood and came back around to our house when Cameron said, "Mom? Why do we have pictures of bad guys all over our yard?" as if we were just "decorating" the yard with pictures of bad guys. :-D I had to explain that the security signs in our yard were actually designed to let bad guys know they shouldn't come to our house! ;-)

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Our First Trip to the Mercantile

We got to meet Ladd! He's a real nice guy! We had a real special time with cousin Darren!

Another Trip to The Mercantile

We saw Ree AND Ladd both today!  ;-) Everything I have tasted there was amazing! I had the taco salad, we had chips with different salsas (an amazing watermelon salsa), raspberry tea, and a gf chocolate muffin. Sam had a fried chicken sandwich. We had fun shopping and came home with some unique and pretty things. It was great mother/daughter/friend time!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Thursday, July 13, 2017
packages (8 oz each) cream cheese, softened
1 1/4
cups sugar 
tsp vanilla
1/2 chocolate chips

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Sunday, July 9, 2017

A Conversation with Cameron

Sam and I had a conversation with Cameron that went like this:

Me- Cameron, you're so sweet. What are you made of? Sugar?
Cameron- Yeah (with a smile on his face)
Me- You know what you're going to be when you grow up?
Cameron- What?
Me- A big teddy bear. (He laughed)
Sam- He's picturing that! (With a giggle)
Sam- What do you wanna be when you grow up?
Cameron- Um, a dad. I think I wanna be a dad.
Me- Dad talked to him about this last night and said that's a wonderful thing but it doesn't pay very well. Cameron, it may be a good idea to have a job too so your family can have food, clothes, a car...
Cameron- I might have a job too.
Sam- Where do you want to work, Cameron?
Cameron- Umm...I think a place that gives money.
Sam and I had a good laugh.
Me- Yeah, that would be a good place!
Cameron- I'm probably going to have an awesome car too! (He said it with such heart that we got another hearty laugh.)
;-) I'mean probably going to have a car like Mr. Smoliak's. But not black (grey). I'm probably going to have a red one. 

The next day he decided it might have fake fire on it too.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Live Life to the Hilt: Tyranny of our ideals

Live Life to the Hilt: Tyranny of our ideals: Live Life to the Hilt "There's nothing wrong with admitting there are aspects of life that disappoint. There's nothing wrong...

Live Life to the Hilt: Privacy

Live Life to the Hilt: Privacy: Being Quiet I read this yesterday in Daily Strength for Daily Needs, a collection by Mary W. Tileston, for every day of the year, of Scr...

Live Life to the Hilt: Mothering

Live Life to the Hilt: Mothering: Thursday, August 23, 2012 Mothering Now that my "official" mothering days are over (I'll always be a mother, but the childr...

Monday, June 26, 2017

No Time for Boredom

I am always saying I don't have time to be bored. It's pretty true actually in this season of life and given the fact that there's hardly a dull moment around this house. If my kids ever say they are bored, I tell them to look around at God's beautiful and amazing world and explain there's no time for that! Or...that there's a chore they could surely do. ;) So, when I saw this quote on my church bulletin I thought Calvin said it so well:

"There is not one blade of grass, there is no color in this world that is not intended to make us rejoice."
John Calvin

Thursday, June 15, 2017
  1. 1 ½ cups of granola 
  2. ¼ cup sugar
  3. 4 tablespoons butter,
  4. Blend all and put in oven- 350.Place in a pie pan and bake for about 10 minutes.

Friday, June 9, 2017

An Extra "Paw" to help

Liv came up to me the other day with 3 Care Bears (my old ones) and asked me to play. I, of course, was pretty busy. At the same time, I didn't want to turn her away because she hasn't actually asked me to play with her in a long time. She always has a sibling to play with and that is probably why it's a rarity for her to ask. So I said sure but that Wishbear (the one she handed me) had some copies he needed to help me make. Then I said I really needed Tenderheart Bear and Friendship Bear's help (Cameron was along and had her) with the laundry. The next thing you know Noah was holding my Wishbear and laundry was flying into the dryer by the hands of Liv and Noah and Cameron was enlisting Donald Duck, Mickey Mouse, and a raccoon to help as well. I said I needed all hands on deck to help and Liv corrected me and said it was paws. Then we were collecting laundry and putting another load in. Tenderheart was getting a basket of dirty laundry and she of course wanted to put the soap in (she put it in the wrong area but that's okay ;) ). I'm thinking I may just call on these Care Bears again. Because, truth be known, I could use all the paws I can get around this place!

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Loop Waterfall Braid

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Educating the Wholehearted Child by Clay and Sally Clarkson

I have wanted to read this book for years and finally have it in my hands!! I haven't gotten very far yet but have already found some treasure in it: "It is not difficult today to set our parenting goals on making our children successful by the world's standards. But if their hearts and minds are not turned wholeheartedly toward God, we will miss the mark by God's standards."

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

“Children are not a distraction from more important work. They are the most important work.” – Dr. John Trainer

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Friday, March 10, 2017

Monday, March 6, 2017

THM Cornbread

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Quoting Sally Clarkson

I ♡ these:

"Who you are in your home is who you are."

“I always wanted to be a hero--to sacrifice my life in a big way one time--and yet, God has required my sacrifice to be thousands of days, over many years, with one more kiss, one more story, one more meal.”

~Sally Clarkson

Sunday, February 26, 2017

Friday, February 24, 2017

February~Pursuing Love

"We need others physically, emotionally, intellectually; we need them if we are to know anything, even ourselves."

"Eros will have naked bodies; Friendship naked personalities." - from Friendship.

"This headship, then, is most fully embodied not in the husband we should all wish to be but in him whose marriage is most like a crucifixion; whose wife receives most and gives least, is most unworthy of him, is - in her own mere nature - least lovable. For the Church has no beauty but what the Bride-groom gives her; he does not find, but makes her, lovely." - from Eros.

"It is probably impossible to love any human being simply 'too much.' We may love him too much in proportion to our love for God; but it is the smallness of our love for God, not the greatness of our love for the man, that constitutes the inordinacy. - from Charity.

~From the Four Loves by C.S. Lewis

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Banana Peanut Butter Pancakes

One mashed banana, two eggs (or 3) and about 1/2 of a cup of peanut butter, and a  splash of vanilla. Makes about 8 pancakes.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

THM Strawberry Ice cream

Cream, Pyure, Vanilla extract and fresh strawberries

Jalapeño bites- Half a jalapeno, add cream cheese/cheese mixture and wrap with bacon

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Pursuing Love December/January

Oh dear! December and January got away from me! There was Christmas, a super fun Disneyland trip right after and we rang in the new year there (*side note: Almost all of us were standing right next to Dennis Quaid there, except me watching the littles while everyone rode Radiator Springs. They think they raced his car!), and a long flu to recover from when we got home. Nonetheless, I have been pursuing love and not even remembering to blog about it. I have seen growth and am so thankful. I know marriage has peaks and valleys and we are on the peak right now. It is such a lovely place to be. My pastor has quoted that book, "Don't sweat the small stuff and it is all small stuff." The small stuff seems not to be so offensive as it used to be! I was thinking on this this morning and how far it goes just to be patient with our spouse when they offend us and to just let more things go. The scripture, "Love covers a multitude of sins," came to me when I thought of it. I had to stay home from church with little Noah because he had a fever and listened to a John Piper sermon, "Love Her Less, Love Her More." Hardly a couple of hours after I had thought on it, Piper was quoting that very verse and talking about exactly what I had been dwelling on! The sermon lined right up  with it! I love it when it seems the Lord seems to be affirming things to us. It happened not too many weeks back with a sermon my pastor preached as well.

My notes on Piper's sermon~

If your marriage is going to make God look glorious, you must be more satisfied in God than marriage. If he's vastly more beautiful to us than we are to each other. Long-suffering required to be in this marriage for the glory of God. Daily, hourly, yearly, decades long dying, self-denial that will be required to love this man/woman so God gets the glory. How does love cover a multitude of sins? You're married to a sinner, your kids are sinners, there's a daily disappointment in life,  at church,  in the home. If this is not figured out, if you don't find a way to cover those sins...this is the end! True love covers them so you don't see them or they don't make you bitter, angry, hard, does love cause you not to respond that way?! Faith working through love to cover all these sins in my family, friends, in my church... Faith in what? What act of faith releases a love that covers sins and keeps me happily engaged in all my relationships without bitterness and anger, resentment, and hardness? Here's my sentence: "'Piper, you have a blood-bought, inexpressively happy, totally undeserved future.'" If I could believe that at every moment of conflict, every moment of difficulty,  at every moment of frustration, at every moment as I look out onto the world, I'd be a loving man. If our marriages are going to show God gloriously all satisfying, then we must find more satisfaction in Him than in anything,  especially marriage. Marriages sweetened by the glory of God...Marriages to portray truth and beauty...Make God central in preaching, not marriage. HE is my satisfaction.

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Breakfast Sausage Casserole (with sweet potatoes!)

My friend made an amazing breakfast casserole and lots of moms starting requesting the recipe! I used Italian sausage instead of Deer sausage. I'm sure breakfast sausage would be great. I went to the grocery store to grab the ingredients for this casserole and thought I'd share some time saving tips for it. I had no idea but there are actually frozen sweet potatoes that are already peeled and cut at Walmart! That made me happy. Grabbing some frozen seasoning blend ( chopped onions, peppers, and celery mix) would also be good to cook with the sausage. :) I always keep seasoning blend handy for tons of recipes. Here it is:

I apologize, I do not measure anything when I do breakfast casseroles, so I will do the best I can :)
I used about 1.5 lbs homemade deer sausage (it was pretty spicy/salty)
About 3 cups chopped spinach
garlic powder
onion powder
one large sweet potato, with coconut oil for baking, salt and pepper
12 eggs
I love to add chopped onion when cooking the sausage, I just didn't have any this time.
I peeled and chopped the sweet potato into bite sized pieces, tossed the pieces in about 2 tbs melted coconut oil and spread on a baking sheet.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake at 400 for about 25 min.  While those were baking I cooked the sausage.  When the sausage was cooked thoroughly, I added the chopped spinach to the pan, just long enough to wilt.  Then transferred sausage and spinach to 9x13ish dish.  I dusted the top of sausage with onion powder and garlic powder.  Then added the sweet potato on top of that, then the 12 beaten eggs.  I covered with foil and left in fridge overnight, but you can mix and bake in the morning.  I baked it at 400 for about 30 min, until the eggs are set. :)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

At Home with Sally

LOVE LOVE LOVE to listen to Sally Clarkson's (with Kristen Kill) podcasts!

This Life I Live by Rory Feek

Thankful for this 20 min. peek at Rory's book! I can tell it's going to be amazing!!

Friday, January 13, 2017

Tuscan Butternut Squash