Friday, April 25, 2014

Eating from the Pantry Challenge

This week  I am taking the "Eating from the Pantry" Challenge over at Money Saving Mom. 
After splurging a little at Easter, my food budget was a little tight this week - so I'm getting creative with leftovers. Here's what I found in the pantry/fridge/freezer:

2 lbs. Leftover pork fajita meat        tortillas                                         
2 cooked chicken breasts                diced onions                               
Leftover Easter ham                        frozen mixed veggies
Boiled eggs                                     1 can diced tomatoes w/ green peppers
frozen hashbrowns                          Minute rice
northern beans                                 Corn Masa mix & corn husks
(plus seasonings and condiments)

Here's this week's dinner menu:

Monday: Ham & Hashbrowns
Tuesday: Sliced Ham and Deviled Eggs
Wednesday: Chicken Quesos and Spanish Rice
Thursday: BBQ Pork Sandwiches and mixed veggies
Friday: Homemade Pork Tamales and Spanish Rice
Saturday: Ham & Beans

Homemade Tamales:
Corn husks                        
Corn masa mix
salt & baking powder       
leftover seasoned shredded pork

To Prepare:
1. Soak corn husks in warm water until pliable.
2. Mix 2 c. corn masa, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. baking powder, 2 c. water, 1/2 c. margarine to make dough (should be the consistency of soft cookie dough).
3. Pat corn husks dry. Spread about 1/4 c. masa on a husk. Put 2 Tbsp. shredded pork in center of masa and roll husk and fold under ends. Repeat until all the masa and meat are used.
To cook: Steam tamales over boiling water for 45 minutes. Remove tamales from steamer with tongs and remove husks before eating. Enjoy!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Book Review: What Happens When Women Say Yes to God

In her devotion book, "What Happens When Women Say Yes to God", author Lysa TerKeurst shares personal and practical examples of how obedience to God in our daily lives can strengthen and grow our faith in Christ.

There are 40 short chapters, each includes a focus Scripture, a thought for the day, a prayer, and reflection questions.

I really like the set-up of this book, but to be honest, I'm disappointed in the content. This book is not gospel-centered, nor is there much talk of Jesus. Much of the focus is on personal benefit, not on being obedient followers of Christ.
Unfortunately, decent theology mixed with self-help advice leads to malnourished baby Christians. I'm afraid this book will leave you hungry for the truth. That truth will only be found when we believe the Bible is sufficient as God's revelation to man and that it must be used in context. God has spoken to us through His Word, we don't need to listen for a still small voice to know how to obey. Nor can we make singled-out Bible verses fit our own ideas and purposes.

If you are truly looking to grow in your faith and obedience to Christ, this devotional doesn't have the depth you are probably looking for.

*Special thanks to Harvest House Publishers through for providing this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Book Review: Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full

Similar to her first book, Gloria Furman has written another gospel-centered, doctrine-filled book for moms to help them think about, rejoice in, and be encouraged by Christ in the the daily tasks of mothering in "Treasuring Christ When Your Hands are Full".

Women who have followed personal-focused teachings instead of Christ-centered teaching for a long time may struggle with the attitude adjustment necessary to grasp the benefits of this book. But, that is exactly who this book is for. So, with humorous examples and sharing personal struggles with sin, Furman eases us into this attitude adjustment.  For example, she says:

"I write with the authority of a woman who has tasted a lot of soul junk food and suffered from painful spiritual cavities."

"When we make motherhood (or anything else) all about us, we eventually get bored. And of course we get bored with motherhood when we obsess over it, because motherhood was never meant to fully satisfy us."

Like having a cup of coffee with your best friend, Furman is candid with the truth. She kindly and honestly reminds the us that it is well worth the effort to refocus our thoughts on Christ instead of ourselves, 

"We need to remember that God is no less good to us when we find ourselves in a battle of wills with a preschooler in the checkout line at the grocery store than he was as his Son dragged a cross up a hill that Friday two thousand years ago."

Thank you Gloria for reminding us that our goal in motherhood is not to produce perfect little humans, but that God uses these years to mold us into Christ-likeness as He has "filled [our] hands with the good work of mothering".

*Special thanks to Crossway through for providing this book in exchange for my honest opinion.