Saturday, May 8, 2010

Apple Streusel Bars

What a wonderful weekend I have had! One of my really good friends from High School came to visit. We did so much and just had so much fun talking, singing, baking, going out to eat, and so much more! I am so thankful for good friends and think that I have some of the best! I also realized that I don't have to go to class or anywhere on Monday, how exciting! 

I just wanted to post the dessert that I made for our bible study party because I have gotten a ton of compliments on it and agree that it was delicious! I got it from Lovin' From the Oven who I absolutely love:)

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 cup real butter, softened
  • 1 egg
Apple Filling:
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 3 medium apples
  • 2 cups confectioners sugar
  • 3 tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

To prepare crust, mix flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in a medium bowl. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or two knives until you have pea-sized crumbles. Gently mix in beaten egg.

Spray a 9x13  or 9x9 baking dish
 with non-stick cooking spray. Gently pat about 2/3 of the crumb mixture onto the bottom of the dish. Preheat oven to 350 and set aside.
To prepare apple filling, combine flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Toss with apples and spread apples out on prepared crust. Sprinkle reserved crust mixture over apples evenly and bake in preheated oven for 40-50 minutes. When finished, allow to cool completely.

To prepare glaze, whisk together powdered sugar, vanilla extract, and milk. Place glaze in a Ziploc bag and cut off a very small portion of one of the corners. Drizzle glaze over cooled pastry and allow to harden. 
I've been thinking a lot about how much Jesus cares for each and every one of us. The fact that he pays so much attention to us and is always there no matter what. This just really made me question how much I care about other people and how much attention I pay to my friends and even people I don't really know. If the Lord is so good to me shouldn't I share that with others? How can I accept the love and care He has for me and not return the favor to Him and others on earth. I really should think about other people's feelings more and what I can do for them in any situation. It's not all about me no matter how much I think that sometimes. I need to constantly be reminding myself who I am living for and what that looks like. How can I represent Jesus better and show His love to those around me?

Happy Mother's Day to all of the wonderful mom's I know! Especially mine, she is such a wonderful mom and friend and I am so thankful for her and all she does for my family and I! I also have some pretty amazing grandma's and I wish that I could spend more time with them. I love you all and hope you have a fabulous day and are treated wonderfully because you really deserve it. I am sorry I cannot be with you but I am thinking about you and will see you soon!

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all." 2 Corinthians 13:14

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

When Summer Comes Around...

This post is going to be a little bit different than normal. I only have 6 days left of my sophomore year of college, crazy I know. I have actually done quite a bit of baking/cooking the past week or so but of course as I mentioned my camera battery is dead...we will work on that when I get home. I have to have my camera for California :) I still can't believe I am actually going to CA for 8 weeks! Everything is really winding down and I am definitely having mixed emotions. I am extremely excited to be done with classes but a couple of things that must end for the year are what really make me sad...
Today was my last day with the 3rd grade class I have been interning with this semester. They had a party for me celebrating my being there not my leaving! (The teacher had to clarify because the students didn't understand why they would celebrate me leaving them) Working with them was honestly one of the best experiences I have ever had. They each wrote me a letter and drew a picture that the teacher put into a notebook for me! As soon as I got there this morning they all starting giving me hugs and saying that they didn't want me to leave. I almost cried as soon as I walked in when one little boy who I have been working with a lot this semester ran up to me with a simple drawing and said this is you Miss. Mandy and this is me! We were standing next to a tree with a blue sky, one cloud, and a beautiful sun! I remember constantly when I visited my Aunt's class last year and the notes her students wrote me when I left. I cannot wait until I am a real teacher. It is stuff like this that continually reminds me that I am in the right field. I absolutely love being in the classroom and working with the students. I taught my first lesson on Monday on Christopher Columbus and almost all of them wrote in their letters how much they liked it when I taught and loved the craft I did with them! It is such a blessing to have the opportunity to work with these students, they bring me so much joy and laughter! I know it will not always be easy but it is a journey that I am willing to take and I cannot wait.  I am now one step closer to being a teacher and I cannot wait until it is my turn to be in charge!
Last week was our final bible study of the year and it was such an enjoyable time. We went to a couple of the girls house and had a party making our own pizza and just hanging out for a couple of hours. It was so wonderful just being able to fellowship with those awesome girls that I have gotten to know so much better this year. I am so excited for next year and the potential for us all to become even closer. It is crazy how the Lord puts certain people in our lives for a reason and at the perfect time. I am so thankful for these girls and cannot wait until next fall! I found out that I will be a bible study leader next year and with one of those amazing girls from my study! The Lord has really blessed me and I have seen so much growth in my life over the past year! 

Here are some pictures from our fabulous pizza/end of the year party!

Recipe for homemade dough:
1 package active dry yeast (2 teaspoons)
1 cup warm water 
3 cups all-purpose or bread flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, plus a little for coating
In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt.Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and pour the olive oil and yeast mixture into it. Stir until it begins to form a ball, then turn it out onto a clean, floured surface and knead for 4-5 min.


    P.S. It is one of my best friend's birthday's today. Happy Birthday Logan! You are wonderful :)

    "Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near." 
    Philippians 4:5