Food

S’mores Bars

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I love s’mores. When our kids were little, camping was a summer tradition that included campfires and s’mores. There is something so heavenly about toasted marshmallow and chocolate sandwiched between two graham crackers. Kuddos to a Girl Scout troop leader, from many years ago, for creating this lovely treat. It’s now a classic.

I have been experimenting with these wonderful bars since last summer. I wanted all the goodness of a s’more without the use of a campfire. After many attempts and tweaks, I feel good about sharing this winning dessert with all of you. It’s so simple, yet full of the perfect amount of sweetness to put a smile on your face.

No fire is required, just the heat of your oven. The Hershey chocolate bar is essential to get that nostalgic taste. Feel free to use chocolate chips if you prefer. Use as much or as little marshmallows. Tweak the toppings to your liking. Bring this to a barbecue or a potluck for a fun treat. To all my s’more loving friends out there, you will love this one. Enjoy!

Happy Eating!

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. Matthew 5:9

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S’mores Bars

Ingredients

3/4 cup salted butter ( 12 tablespoons) softened

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

1 egg yolk

2 sleeves of graham crackers ( use 14 for the crust and the remaining 4 crackers for the topping)

6 Hershey chocolate bars (regular size)

10 oz. bag of mini marshmallows

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°. Line a 9 x 13 pan with parchment or aluminum foil.
  2. Place 14 graham crackers for the crust in a food processor to make fine crumbs. Break up 4 graham crackers into bigger chunks and save for the topping.
  3. Using a hand mixer, cream butter and sugars. Add the egg yolk, and the graham cracker crumbs. Mix until combined. Press the crust mixture evenly into pan.
  4. Bake crust for 20 to 25 minutes, until lightly brown. Let cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Place 6 Hershey bars on the hot crust. As the chocolate melts use a rubber spatula to spread out evenly.
  6. Sprinkle approximately 1 to 2 cups of the marshmallows on the melted chocolate. Now sprinkle about half of the broken graham cracker crumbs on top. Add another 1/2 to 1 cup of marshmallows on top of that. Now add the remaining graham cracker crumbs.
  7. Change the oven to broil on low. Put the bars under the broiler for 2 to 3 minutes depending on how toasted you want the marshmallows. Stay by the oven and watch. Marshmallows can burn quickly. Let cool. Cut into bars and enjoy!

Notes:

  • Place the warm bars in the fridge to speed up cooling.
  • Spray a knife with cooking spray for easier cutting.
  • Store at room temp to keep the marshmallows soft.
  • Extend the foil or parchment over the edge of the baking dish and then pull the bars out when you are ready to cut.
  • Use as much or as little marshmallows as you prefer.
  • If you don’t have a food processor, use a freezer bag and a rolling pin to smash the graham crackers.

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Trials, sickness

Vulnerable

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This adorable little stray cat showed up in our backyard a couple months ago. We left a dish of water for her and eventually started leaving out some food as well. She shows up throughout the day meowing wanting attention and something to eat. It took a while for her to come near us. Now she rubs against our legs, but she’s still very cautious.

Since the days have become extremely hot she disappears until early morning and late evening. I have no idea where she goes throughout the day but she sure likes to see us. She is a vulnerable cat with no home providing her protection, so we do what we can to help her. Her visits with us are brief as she is always on the move.

Our little feline friend is vulnerable to all sorts of dangers. Being vulnerable is not something we humans purposely choose. We do everything we can to avoid being vulnerable. The reality of how frail our human lives really are smacked me right in the face when Tom and I both got sick with covid. I was down for almost two weeks and it took Tom a little longer to recover.

It was pretty rough but we survived and we are on the other side by the grace of God. I felt like I was living out the movie Groundhog Day. Each crummy day was on repeat until we got better. When you get sick you are helpless to some extent. I can do my part by drinking plenty of water, taking vitamins, and getting rest. By the way, getting rest was no problem since all we wanted to do was sleep.

Regardless of my choices, I’m still vulnerable. We had to trust God that He would get us through our sickness to the other side. Tom and I know our lives, our times, our health, and everything are in God’s mighty hands. Suffering is not fun. Sickness is terrible. But God cares for His children.

I couldn’t pray much because I was just surviving. We had many wonderful people praying for us, and checking on us which was a huge blessing. One verse that came to mind during our illness was from James.

And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. James 5:15, NIV 

I held on to that verse. It’s one of my favorites when dealing with sickness. I believe those words. God made us well.

Another truth that came to mind while being sick was the incredible reality that there will be no sickness in Heaven. How amazing is that? Glory! Hallelujah! Praise the Lord! We will never be sick in Heaven.

He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away. Revelation 21:4, NIV 

We are vulnerable in our brief lives. Sometimes we think we are unstoppable, and can do whatever we want, whenever we want. Sickness, trials, and tribulations remind us of our human frailty. These difficulties that we all experience, are opportunities for our faith to grow. It’s humbling to be sick. You don’t feel strong, you are weak.

In humility, we can fully trust God to help us in our time of need. God helps us like no person can. There is only one Heavenly Father, and He loves helping His sons and daughters.

If you are feeling vulnerable right now, please know you are not alone. We are all vulnerable on this side of Heaven. God is waiting, and always available to answer you in your time of need. His will, His way. Trust Him. He’s got you.

Love you all,

Meghan

Food

Veggie Stir Fry

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If you want a simple, nutritious, inexpensive meal, look no further. Veggie stir fry is filled with flavor and nourishment. Use your favorite vegetables. I like to use onions, carrots, and broccoli as my base. Then I add whatever looks or sounds good, like snap peas.

The sauce is so delicious with fresh ginger and garlic. Red pepper flake gives it a nice little kick. Use more or less depending on how much spice you prefer. I like to double, or even triple the amount of sauce.

Veggie stir fry is so quick to throw together. The only time consuming part is chopping all of the vegetables. In a pinch you can use frozen, or any leftover veggies you’ve got in the fridge.

For a budget friendly, easy dinner make this tasty veggie stir fry. Add a protein like chicken, beef, or shrimp for even more flavor and nutrients. This no fuss dish will give your meals variety. Enjoy!

Happy Eating!

Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who take refuge in Him. Proverbs 30:5

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Veggie Stir Fry

For the Sauce:

1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 tablespoon fresh grated ginger

1 clove minced garlic

1/2 teaspoon red pepper flake

Vegetables:

1 medium onion cut into wedges

3 to 4 carrots sliced into thin rounds

2 heads of broccoli cut into florets

sweet peppers sliced into strips

other vegetables to add: snap peas, baby corn, zucchini, asparagus, cauliflower, water chestnuts, or whatever you like

for cooking the veggies:

1/2 to 1 teaspoon of salt

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

Instructions

  1. In a small bowl combine the soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch, ginger, garlic, and red pepper flake. Whisk until blended, set aside.
  2. In a large skillet or wok, heat vegetable oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onions and carrots and a pinch of salt. Raise the heat to medium high, stirring every 30 seconds or so until the onions have softened. This takes 4 to 5 minutes.
  3. Add the broccoli and the rest of the vegetables and another pinch of salt to the skillet, stirring every 30 seconds or so, until the carrots start to caramelize. This takes about 5 minutes. Cook the vegetables until the carrots are fork tender and the remaining vegetables are tender, yet crisp.
  4. Turn the heat down low. Pour the sauce over the vegetables, stirring constantly until the sauce is thickened. This takes less than a minute. Remove from heat and serve with rice.

Notes:

I recommend doubling the sauce.

Cook the vegetables to your liking. I prefer mine crisp yet tender.

Cover your skillet with a lid to help steam the vegetables.

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Jesus

Unflappable

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Recently, my youngest son’s golf coach suggested he watch some of the Masters Golf Tournament. We watched the highlights from the competition showcasing the best golfers in the world. A young man named Scottie Scheffler won. Only twenty-five years old, and a true master of the game. One reporter described Mr. Scheffler as unflappable. What a brilliant word that seems to have disappeared.

Dictionary.com defines unflappable as:

not easily upset or confused, especially in a crisis; imperturbable.

I love a great word, and unflappable is an excellent word that needs used more. It got me thinking about living up to such a quality. Am I unflappable? No. I can be, but many times I am not. Do I want to be unflappable? Yes. I think I have been more flappable in my life, then unflappable.

I have every reason as a Christ Follower to be unflappable, yet I struggle. The crisis comes and I crumble. I start out strong, believing God will make a way, yet as time goes on I start to doubt. Fear creeps in my mind and I collapse. But God, in His never ending grace and mercy reaches out His hand, and picks me up. He dusts me off, and gives me the strength to stand, once again.

Our foundation is on the Rock.

Every Christian has the potential to be unflappable when the hard times come. We won’t always hit the mark and will fall short, but the goal is to stand firm in our faith and not waiver. We must rely on Jesus to be unflappable. On our own we will falter. With Christ we can keep our joy, and peace, and hope because we know He will get us through the crisis.

And the rain fell and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Matthew 7:25, NASB

Jesus taught about the wise and foolish builders. The foolish man built his house on sand. When the storms came the house crashed because of its weak foundation. The wise man built his house upon solid rock, and his house withstood the storms. The wise man is the believer whose foundation is the solid Rock of Christ. The fool is the man who has rejected Jesus’ teachings, and has an unstable foundation of sand.

Our confidence is in the Rock of Ages, Jesus Christ.

I took the picture of that massive boulder because it reminded me of the solid ground I stand on. It’s hard to tell in the photo, but the rock is huge. I’m sure that rock has experienced some storms in its long life, yet it has survived, and probably learned a thing or two along the way.

I’m grateful for Jesus, my Rock. He is my sure foundation. He holds me up, and at times picks me up. I have gone through some pretty awful crisis in my life, and my Jesus has been faithful to see me through. He has never left me, not once. He’s not going to leave you either.

My goal is to be unflappable in this crazy world. I cannot achieve this just by thinking positively or trying really hard. I can do this through Christ. I will fail at times, but I will get back up as He holds my hand.

Eyes on Jesus. He is everything.

Love you all,

Meghan

Salvation

It’s Never Too Late

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I love biographies. Real stories from real people intrigue and inspire me. Recently, I was scrolling through Youtube when a video showed up on my feed that made me curious. It seemed so random since I had never searched for this. The short video was an interview with none other than the legendary founder of Kentucky Fried Chicken, Harland Sanders, aka Colonel Sanders.

The Colonel did not get any real financial success until he was well into his sixties. He experienced many business failures before he achieved any great triumphs. Colonel Sanders shared that his ship came later in life, and maybe your ship hasn’t come in yet, but it will. What stood out the most to me, as I watched the Colonel’s interview, was his faith.

Harland Sanders placed his faith in Jesus Christ at seventy-seven years old. He shared with his wife that he “wanted to make peace with his maker”. Harland had achieved great wealth yet knew something was missing in his life. He was raised in a strong Christian home, and had been taught the truth from day one, but he went his own way for many years.

Harland was a hard man, who cussed like a sailor. He was known to get into some fist fights. Everything changed when he said yes to Jesus. Not a perfect man, but a follower of Christ, committed to doing good works with his money.

It’s never too late, until it is.

We are not promised tomorrow. We have right now. Our brief lives will end one of these days. Colonel Sanders got saved at seventy-seven. You might think you are too old, and too far gone to choose Jesus, you’re not. You might think that you have plenty of time to place your faith in Jesus. Don’t put it off another day, because you may not have another day. 

Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring—what your life will be! For you are like vapor that appears for a little while, then vanishes. James 4:14, CSB

Honestly, getting saved is more than just hell insurance. You will never be the same. You will live a more abundant life, not with more stuff and money, but with peace, joy, and hope. You will have God’s Holy Spirit living inside of you. You will have a relationship with Jesus Christ. You will have full access to Father God. I could go on and on. 

It’s never too late to choose Jesus.

If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation.

Romans 10:9-10, CSB 

 

 

Love you all,

Meghan 

 

 

Photo credit: Meghan E. White