Sunday, 25 January 2009

Marie's Sunday Six Smile Makers




Happy Sunday people. I just love Sundays! It's the day of the week when I get to go to church and honour my Saviour, see my friends and share with you all the things in this past week that have brought joy into my life. It's hard to believe that this is the last Sunday of January. Hasn't the month flown by quickly??? Because it's the last Sunday of the month, I thought I would share with you six things that blessed my month this week, instead of just the past seven days.



No surprise here! The major highlight of the month and thing that gave me the most joy was this lovely surprise of me being able to go to Idaho. I am still pinching myself. I can't believe it is happening! God is good. My daughter is so very excited that I am going to be able to be there for her. She never got involved with the Special Olympics until after I moved over here to England, and so I have never ever been able to see her compete in anything. When her dad moved to the Philippines, she moved in with a couple from her church, Dale and Brenda. They are the ones who got her involved in the Special Olympics and helped to support her in this way. Not too long after she moved in with them, Dale found out he had cancer. Unfortunately Dale did not survive, and he passed away three Christmas's ago now. Dale loved Eileen. Eileen loved Dale. I just know he would be so proud of her, as are we all. I am so very grateful for this couple's love for my daughter, and the way that they have cared for and nurtured her, and helped her to grow even more.



Special Friends. I am especially grateful for special friends this month. To my most generous benefactor, you know who you are . . . I can never thank you enough for what you have done for me. I want you to know that I am so very grateful for your love and your support and that I won't let you down, ever. To all my friends on here and in real life who pray for me and who support me and care about me, I am ever grateful for the love and understanding that you share with me every single day of my life. I will try hard to never let any of you down either. You all just mean the world to me and you bless my life in so very many ways.



My Todd. Todd has been one of my greatest blessings in life. I waited a lifetime to find him. He may not be Adonis, and, come to think of it, I may not be Venus! We are not perfect people, but we are perfect for each other. It is a great blessing to be able to share your life with a person that not only fills your heart with love, but who also fills your life with abundant joy. We do everything together, and have done so since the day we got married, and we have loved every minute of it. We even used to work together in the same Service Station and on the same shifts!! It was great!! Not everyone could do that with their partner, but it was very easy for us. We work great together as a team. He is my joy, my love, my help meet, my friend. When we got married we did not get married until Death do us Part, we got married in our Temple for Time and All Eternity, which is an additional blessing. I am so happy that I will be able to be with him forever and ever. Having found him so late in my life I never want to be without him again . . .



Welcoming the newest member of our family here on earth! Joshua Caleb Alexander made his arrival here on the 9th of January. I hope it will not be too long before I will be able to hold this wee one in my arms. I have held him in my heart since I knew he was on the way. I just know that Jonathan is going to be a wonderful big brother to him and that they will be close. Kayla and Doug are wonderful parents. It's a special feeling to be able to witness your own children loving and nurturing their own children and doing such a great job of it. It lets you know that you must have done something right somewhere along the way! Our Doug is such a tender hearted man, a gentle giant with a heart of Gold. I am so very proud of him, as I am all of my children.


I'm a praying person and I am thankful for that. I'm grateful that I have a loving Heavenly Father that I am able to communicate with every minute of every day, no matter where I am, or what I am doing. I know that I can always talk to Him and I know that He always listens. I know that He always answers too, even if I am not always happy with the answers I get. I always know that He does His very best for me and that it is always for my own good, and I trust in that. I know that He would never give me a bum steer or lead me astray or into danger. I trust in His infinite goodness and I am so grateful to have a seeking heart, a loving heart and a listening heart.



This is my newest creation that I did yesterday afternoon. I call it "Be Still And Know". That is one of my favourite verses in the bible.

"Be still and know that I am God" Psalm 46:10

It is a verse that has helped to carry me throughout all the turbulent times in my life, and trust me when I say, things don't always run smoothly. It is during those moments when I need Him the most that that still quiet voice in my heart whispers to me . . . be still, let the clamour of your worries and problems cease . . . know that I am always with you, that I care, that I will not let you down, that I love you, that I will carry you through any turbulent waters you have to pass through and any bumps in the road that you will have to cross over. I am here. I care, and even if I don't always remove the stumbling blocks in your path . . . I will always walk by your side as you walk over them and through them and around them . . .

Be still and know . . .

I had some blueberries that I needed to use up yesterday, leftover from my Dorie creation of Tuesday, so I made a delicious blueberry cake with them. This is one of our favourite cakes. It's always moist and delicious. We sat here together last evening after our dinner munching on it and watching a movie on our telly, and all was right with the world . . .



*Blueberry Muffin Cake*
Makes one 9 inch cake

This cake is very similar to a nice big muffin. It goes together like a cross between a muffin and a scone. We just love the crunchy sweet topping. The buttermilk helps to make it very moist and delicious!

Topping:
2/3 cup white sugar
3/4 cup chopped toasted pecans
2 TBS butter, melted
2 tsp cinnamon
Cake:
1 cup buttermilk
2 large eggs, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon extract
the grated zest of one lemon
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 TBS baking powder
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into bits
1 1/2 cups blueberries (frozen or fresh)



Pre-heat the oven to 180*C/350*F. Lightly grease a nine inch square baking pan and dust it with flour, tapping out the excess. Set aside.

Make the topping by stirring together all the ingredients in a small bowl. Set aside.

Place the buttermilk, eggs, vanilla and lemon essence into a small bowl and blend all together well. Set aside.

Whisk the flour, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl. Drop in the cold butter bits, and rub them in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles coarse meal.

Add the wet ingredients to the flour mixture all at once and stir just to blend. Do NOT overmix. Fold in the blueberries.

Spread the batter into your prepared pan. Sprinkle the topping evenly over all. Bake for 50 minutes to an hour, just until the top springs back when lightly touched or a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean. Remove from the oven and cool in the pan on a wire rack. Serve warm with some creme fraiche or softly whipped cream if desired.

21 comments:

Angie said...

What a lovely Sunday Six. A summing up of the whole month is a brilliant idea.

I am so glad you're off to Idaho. When is it and are you both going. Eileen will be thrilled to have her proud mum there.

Where did you get blueberries from? Not to be had up here for love nor money, even from the freezer shop. Can you use drained canned ones?

love Angie, xx

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

You had some wonderful Sunday 6's there. Some blessings that you can be thankful for always. I love you art work. That is another blessing too. Blue berries are supposed to be very good for you so your cake was a double joy. I do hope your Sunday is a great one.
'On Ya'-ma

Little Red Hen said...

Oh Marie, I have forgotten how well you express yourself! Your words of love for Todd were just so heartfelt! I'm so glad I finally am able to make a comment on this page! You're a star!

Susie

Jan said...

What an upbeat/exciting entry Marie ,I am so pleased you will be able to see your Daughter compete ,and soon hold that new babe in your arms Have aBlessed Sunday ..love Jan xx

Ruthanne said...

I love the way you gave all the praise and glory to Papa God - for sure He is very worthy of our praise.
I couldn't wait til after church to read your joyful Sunday six pack. You made me rejoice with you and am glad I didn't wait. We do have so much to really than God for, but many forget and you don't! If you don't quit pinching yourself you will be purple all over - hahaha. Just float with the excitement and joy of what God has -is doing. Makes me wish for a moment that I still lived in Nampa, Idaho so I could come over to the games and sit with you and cheer with you and hug your neck! But I am sure God will send someone else to be with you while you are here. I thank the Lord for bring you into my heart and life you are a great blessing to me.
I do love you and will continue praying for God's great blessings on you and Todd.

Hugs, love and great Joy,
Ruthanne oxox

The Blonde Duck said...

Marie,

I'm fine! I'm just a bit overwhelmed right now. Things are crazy at work and I'm trying to keep up with all the new folks visiting my blog and so I run on six hours of sleep from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. without breathing all week. Then on the weekends it's like I just want to relax with Ben and the Babies but I have a house to clean and all this stuff for the blog and all my little books. I'm just going to be really glad when this redesign gets done--everything will be much more organized and easier for people to understand.

I'm sending LFB to you today, promise.

What was your good news?

I could use a piece of that muffin cake! :)

Anonymous said...

Marie, what is it your daughter will be competing in.?I'm so curious.We feel we know you from your wonderful blog and my thoughts are with you.Safe and happy trip.Best wishes from Canada to you and your girl.

Maryann said...

A surprise I found while blogging was meeting some wonderful, generous people. It has been inspiring in a world where I believed mostly negativity lived.
I'm so happy for you and God bless the person who is helping you go to the states.

Gloria said...

I love your sunday six Marie, what a lot of Blessings!! May you pray by me???? Im a little blue, things happens sometimes!! I send you huggs and you a real and lovely friend sto me!! Love ya!! Gloria

Love your Blueberries Cake!!!
Remember I love Todd too!!!(he is so handsome!)

Linda's World said...

What a wonderful week you've had. We are all thrilled that you will be able to travel to Boise. This recipe sounds yummy. I'm not a huge fan of blueberries but I also don't dislike them. So this would be a great recipe for me to use. Just enough berries for taste but not overwhelming (like blueberry pie). Have a wonderful SUnday afternoon & evening~Have you started packing yet? Linda in Washington

Tracy said...

What an extra happy six today, Marie! I'm just still over joyed you'll be going to Idaho soon! I've been thinking of you extra this weekend, and just sooo happy for you! Your new illustration is so sweet...Love her expression. And so lovely to see Todd. Hi, Todd! :o) This cake is sensational...love anything blueberries, and definitely blueberry muffins. Hope we get to chat today--look forward to it! Oh, if you get a chance to stop by my place--I'm having a fun giveaway this week! LOVE YOU HEAPS ((BIG HUGS))

hoLLy said...

oh, joshua is perfect! there is nothing better than a new baby straight from our heavenly father. and i can't wait to hear about your idaho trip when you get back. that will be so fun! sounds like you have so much to smile about! :)

Gillie said...

Yeah...I am all caught up with you!!!

Again, I am so happy for you and your upcoming trip!!!
xx

Beverly said...

Marie, You are so awesome and I feel that I know you personally. I totally agree with you about our husbands, we are not perfect, BUT we are perfect for each other. We have been married for 47 years, praise the Lord! I love your little girl, "Be Still and Know". You are so talented! Love Ya!

honeysuckle said...

What a wonderful idea to reflect on your past week with the Sunday Six. You have lovely people in your life and your gratitude about everything and everyone is commendable. I'm happy for your trip and to see your newest baby. Have a wonderful time and hold the baby tight!

Beautiful Pear Tree Lane said...

Hi Marie,
I have enjoyed another visit with you tonight,You are such an inspiring person through your thoughts that you write about and through your artwork. Again let me say that I am so glad that God has made a way for you to go see your daughter compete. When I saw an advertisement about It today I thought of you. I will be praying for you and your family as you travel this month.
I just love all those recipes that you.
Blessings
Sue

jenjen said...

Wonderful Sunday Smilemakers today Marie! That picture of your newest grandbaby is so sweet! I am so happy you are able to be with your daughter while she competes. And your Todd sounds like such a wonderful man!

I love your newest creation - I love that passage also.

Have a wonderful week this week!

XOXOXOXOXO
Jen

Maria said...

Hi, Marie! What a great entry! I was just swaying to your music reading it. The blueberry treat sounds so good. How do you get those little snowflakes to fall on your page? They are so charming! Todd and you sound wonderful together! Hope it lasts for always! :) Happy Sunday! Maria from Little Things

Grammy Staffy said...

I love your Sunday six. I love all of your posts but Sunday and Monday are my favorites.

I is Sunday night and we are back home. I think I am feeling better. I made the trip home well except for having to stop a lot more than usual.

I am happy for all that you listed on this post. Your joys make me smile too.

My heart is especially happy knowing that I will get to meet you in a few days. Yeah!!!

I am going to post some of Johnny's pictures before I go to bed. I am tired from this week end but very happy. Not only did Johnny win 1st place this weekend...so did Claire. She was in her first singing competition this weekend. She was competing against 10 other kids,who were all older than her... but she won 1st place too.
Smile....smile..
I send lots of love. Lura

Jeanie said...

I enjoyed reading your entry Marie.
Your happiness is infectious. I am smiling at the wonderful thought of you beeing able to watch your daughter compete. Someone up there is certainly looking after all of your lovely family.
Just think...watching her compete and holding your new grandchild! I'm sure the day can't come quick enough.
God bless you all! Good luck to your daughter in her competition.

Hugs
Jeanie xxx

cyndi/mom/nana said...

I think it's great that you have time to reflect on things that make you happy and share it with us all. I think your little snowflakes falling softly are a nice touch to your blog.