Snow Day Song

18“Come now, let us settle the matter,”

says the Lord.

“Though your sins are like scarlet,

they shall be as white as snow;

though they are red as crimson,

they shall be like wool. Isaiah 1:18

Snow brings out our sense of wonder. We celebrate children seeing their first snow. We wish for it at Christmas. It transforms cities and landscapes into hushed, peaceful wonderlands.

I hope I never lose my joy and wonder over the snow that God sends. I also hope I never lose the sense of wonder that it is a metaphor for my forgiveness. God has power to send the snow from his storehouses (Job 38:22) and he has the power to forgive. I had nothing but the scarlet letter of the adulteress; he took my sin and the stain of it and made it pure. I cannot justify myself any more than I can send the snow. But I will rejoice that my God does.

And when before the throne

I stand in him complete

“Jesus died my soul to save,”

My lips shall still repeat,

“Jesus paid it all!

All to him I owe.

Sin had left a crimson stain-

He washed it white as snow.”

Jesus Paid It All

Holiday Gingerbread Cake

Three and a half years ago, I had to say good-bye to eggs, milk, and wheat. As time went on, I discovered and adapted recipes for pancakes, cookies, and even mini-donuts (a girl’s gotta have her carbs ‘n’ sugar comfort food, after all). But how was I to make a cake? Without eggs?

Thankfully, I came across this wonderful-smelling, delicious recipe from The Vegan 8. I followed her advice about the substitutions and made a few of my own:

  • I used arrowroot for starch and did not reduce amount for gf baking.
  • With the oat flour, I also used about 1/4 cup general purpose gf flour
  • I used rounded measurements for the spice mix because I liked the stronger flavor
  • Use oil and gf flour on the pan instead of parchment paper
  • Make a double batch for double layer cake and use seedless blackberry jam for the filling (so good)
  • Ice with Simple Mills Organic gluten and dairy free vanilla frosting
  • Instead of frosting, sprinkle with powdered sugar.
  • This cake refrigerates and freezes well

Vanilla Blueberry Scones

Today is a snow day!

In keeping with snow day tradition, I slept in and then made my way to the kitchen for coffee and morning baking.

Last snow day, I made pancakes (recipe here). Today, however, I wanted something a little lighter and not as fried.

Scones.

These blueberry-vanilla scones are every bit as good as I remember- maybe even better! Here is my recipe modified from Wholesome Patisserie’s Blueberry Scones:

1 cup all purpose gluten free flour

1/2 cup brown rice flour

1/2 cup sweet sorghum flour

1 Tablespoon gluten free baking powder

1/4 teaspoon pink Himalayan salt

1/2 cup coconut cream (the thick part from the top- don’t shake the can!)

1/4-1/2 cup vanilla almond or coconut yogurt (can also use peach or strawberry)

3/4 cup coconut milk french vanilla coffee creamer

1/2 c. Frozen blueberries

Extra gf flour for rolling

Step 1: Make a cup of coffee to drink. That’s my baking secret. Also, preheat oven to 390 degrees F. Generously spray a round cake pan or use coconut/ grapeseed oil to avoid any soy.

Step 2: add all ingredients together, except the blueberries. If the dough is not soft, add a bit more all purpose gf flour. It should be sticky, but maleable.

Step 3: add frozen blueberries and stir carefully.

Step 4: turn dough out on floured surface and pat/hand roll until about 1 1/2 inches think. Use floured cookie cutter or plastic cup to make 2 in. circles.

Step 5: Place scones in baking dish. Brush with coffee creamer and sprinkle with raw sugar (if desired). Bake 25-30 minutes or until sides and tops feel firm and crunchy. (I used too much creamer and had to bake an extra 8 minutes). Let set 5-10 minutes.

Step 6: Make another cup of coffee and enjoy with the scones!

The confessions of a New Year’s Scrooge

thoughts 'n' such

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I’m about to confess something that may make me wildly unpopular, but here goes: I don’t really like New Year’s Eve/Day as a holiday.

Author’s note: Please filter this post with the understanding that as I write this, I am by turns smiling, laughing, and teary-eyed.  I am by no means sitting on my couch with a soured frown and permanent crease between my eyebrows. Thank you.

I think I gave up on making resolutions in high school.  Why make more goals (read rules) for myself when I struggle and then fail to keep them? Why, yes, I think I’ll start my new year off by setting myself up for disappointment. (Okay, I don’t really feel that strongly about it.  But, in all fairness, I think there are enough self-help articles about actually keeping the New Year’s resolutions one didn’t manage to keep last year to support my point…

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New Year’s Hope

Hope v. : (transitive) 1. To desire with expectation of obtainment or fulfillment. 2. To expect with confidence.  (intransitive) 1. To cherish a desire with anticipation: to want something to happen or be true. 2. archaic: TRUST

Hope n. : 1. archaic: TRUST, RELIANCE. 2. a. desire accompanied by expectation of or belief in fulfillment; expectation of fulfillment or success. b. someone or something on which hopes are centered. c. something desired or hoped for

Merriam-Webster

On a New Year’s Eve that is brimful of hope – desire in expectation- perhaps it is a good time to bring back the archaic meanings too.

May my reliance not rest in my ability to write my story in 2018. May my trust be in the Divine Author’s plan.

May I continue to hope in Christ’s promise to complete the work begun in me.

May my reliance and trust hold unwaveringly in Christ himself.

May this be my continued prayer for 2018:

Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. Psalm 25:5

Happy New Year!