Monthly Archives: June 2011

LifeLight Music Festival

What do you get when you take a big open field at a camp in northern Missouri, fill it with a bunch of great Christian artists and open the gates for anyone to enjoy the music – for FREE?!

You get the LifeLight Music Festival – a 2 day music feast that blessed the socks of my kids.

We had no idea what to expect when Jan took of Friday afternoon with a van full of kids (our five and their friend Gunnar.)

Life Light Festival

But they sure didn’t expect to get this close to some amazing Christian artists – like Chris August.

Life Light Festival

Or to joke around with Remedy Drive.

Or be this close to the stage.

Seriously – they were this close! Here’s Matt from Sanctus Real.

Did I mention that all this was free?

Over 17 hours of great (but loud) Christian music.

Lifelight The AftersEnding with the Afters singing “Light Up the Sky” complete with fireworks!

But what a perfect ending for a festival who’s theme is to “Taking the church outside the walls and bringing LIGHT into the darkness”.

And what did I do while my amazing husband was sitting through 17 hours of loud music with the kids?

I enjoyed a peaceful and quiet house. 🙂

Thank you LifeLight. Thank you Jan.



Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Dessert

DessertIt’s summertime!

The days are longer.

The temperatures are higher and my days are busier!

It sounds like the perfect time to make a yummy ice cream dessert!

This recipe was the inspiration for two of our family favorites, Chocolate Strawberry Ice Cream Dessert and Chocolate Ice Cream Dessert.  Both of which we’ve enjoyed often.

But would you believe that we have never made the original?!

It was past time to try it.

And it was delicious!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Ice Cream Dessert

1 cup vanilla wafer crumbs
1/2 cup finely chopped peanuts
1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
6 cups chocolate ice cream, softened, divided.

3 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/3 cup peanut butter, either crunchy or smooth
3/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup whipping cream, whipped (I cheated and used about 4 ounces of Cool Whip)

Line the bottom and sides of a loaf pan (9 inch x 3 inch x 5 inch) with heavy duty aluminum foil.

Combine the vanilla wafer crumbs, chopped peanuts, melted butter and 2 tablespoons of powdered sugar. Press half into the bottom of the foil lined pan. Freeze for 15 minutes.

Spread half of the ice cream over the crust and freeze for 1 hour.

(Here’s a hint for the ice cream: a half-gallon carton is the perfect size! Open it up lengthwise and cut the rectangle of ice cream in half. Then cut one of the halves into thirds and squish them into the loaf pan. Put the rest of the ice cream in the freezer till later.)

Meanwhile, for the filling, beat cream cheese and peanut butter in a mixing bowl. Add powdered sugar and milk. Mix well. Fold in whipped cream.

Spread over the ice cream and freeze for 1 hour or until firm.

Spread with remaining ice cream – the pan will be very full. (Just cut the remaining half of the carton of ice cream into thirds and start squishing it in!) Press the remaining crumb mixture on top. Cover and freeze for several hours of overnight.

Remove from the freezer about 10 minutes before serving. using the foil, remove the loaf from the pan and discard the foil.

Cut into pieces with a serrated knife.  It should yield 10-12 large slices, or 15 smaller ones.


I’ve linked this post up with Tempt My Tummy Tuesday at Blessed with Grace and Tasty Tuesday at Balancing Beauty and Bedlam.

Speed Bumps

It’s been a week full of speed bumps.

You know  – those little unexpected things that jolt your day and keep things from running smoothly.

It started with two nights of severe storms. I should say two sleepless nights since the weather radio was going off every 15 minutes all night long – both nights. It got so bad that even when the annoying beeping wasn’t going off – I could still hear it ringing in my ears.

It went on to include Driver’s Ed. for Pedro – including a revised driving schedule to work around.

Then there was the last minute 4H meeting to plan our clubs booth for the fair and a 4H photo shot for the special County Fair edition of our local newspaper with the kids holding their 4H projects – which they hadn’t even started yet!

Yes – that’s right – the county fair is only 2 weeks away – and we are really behind – as in – we never left the starting line!

It was slightly overwhelming.

Did I mention that the kids were sick, and that I ended up at the doctor’s office three times – each one an hour and half round trip?!

To top it all off – last night Buddy stepped on a pitchfork and put a tine clear through his foot.  <sigh>

As I got in the van this AM to take him into town for a tetanus shot  – the song “Blessings” by Laura Story came on the radio.

“We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise…”

It struck me once again that God’s blessing don’t always come in the form of sunny days and restful nights, in health and prosperity.

Sometimes God’s richest blessings come in the raindrops and tears of life.

Each day is a blessing from God – no matter what it holds.

Buzz Top Buddy

It was time for Buddy’s summer haircut and like every other year since he could talk – he begged for a buzz cut.

I don’t know why it’s been hard to buzz this kid. His older brothers routinely got a buzz the end of May every year until they were old to just say no.

But Buddy – we’d cut short – but never buzz.

This year though – he asked me once again after a week of extreme heat and humidity. The ticks were terrible and I had spent several minutes every night checking his head for the tiny varmints.

I caved.

We got him all set up outside with the clippers before  I realized that I had never given a buzz cut before. Jan’s dad, a retired Air Force colonel, is our usual barber and not only does a wonderful job , but saves us lots of money.

But Buddy had complete trust in me – or else he was desperate.

A few anxious minutes later – Buddy was buzzed.

He grinned from ear to ear.

Mom cried.

His sisters told him it was cute and every time he walked past them they would rub his head – which annoyed the kid so much that in desperation he resorted to…

hats…2 hats and a hoodie.

Hmmm… now tell me son, how does a buzz cut keep you cool in the heat when you keep it so well covered?!

“My Daddy”

katie annie emie I loved seeing the world through the eyes of three special little girls this week.

Watching their faces light up as they held baby Rosie at church.

Seeing Emie spread her arms wide and shiver with excitement when she saw the lake. “Big water Aunt Linna, big water!”

Feeling their excitement over ice cream with chocolate sauce and M & M’s.

Catching Emie hiding in the tent with the entire bag of marshmallows stuffing them in her face as fast as she could.

Watching Katie feed the cow and then try to kiss it.

Can you imagine that just a few years ago Katie and Emie had never experienced a beach before? Had never eaten a marshmallow or known the joys of M & M’s?

Emie and the marshmallowsI was struck with the wonder of adoption.

They talked a lot about home this week – especially about daddy.

“My daddy has whiskers.”

“My daddy works hard.”

“My daddy tickles me.”

“My daddy strong.”

“My daddy fix it.”

My daddy.

These two precious girls, rejected by their society because of their handicaps and living in an orphanage in the Ukraine, had no right to call him their Daddy.

He had no obligation to them – they weren’t his children.

But he had paid a great price, traveled many miles, and made them his own.

He chose them. Adopted them. Ransomed them. Loved them.

They are now his. They have every right to call him Daddy, to climb in his lap and snuggle, to sit at his table and eat, to grow and blossom – secure in his love.

“My daddy.”

What a beautiful picture of the heavenly Father’s love for me.

He paid a great price- his son’s life – to ransom me.

He chose me, adopted me, ransomed me and loves me.

I am his own.

“The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” Romans 8:15

Abba Father.

My Daddy.