Wednesday, 8 April 2009
Wednesday Ponderings . . .
Once upon a time the Devil decided to have a sale of all the tools of his trade. Oh my goodness, but everything did look lovely. Each article displayed quite beautifully in the plate glass window of his store. Laid against the most beautiful cloths, all were on display . . . his keen edged dagger of jealousy . . . his sledge hammer of anger . . . . his arrows of lust and covetousness . . . his bow of greed . . . his special weapons of vanity, fear, envy and pride . . . and underneath each was labelled each individual price.
One weapon though was set above the rest in a place of honor. Beautifully framed and set apart, was a small wedge . . . dented and marked with use. The name of this wedge . . . DISCOURAGMENT . . . It's price was higher than all the rest of the tools combined.
People gazed through the window, taking in all the goods and pondering their prices and searching their hearts to see if they had what was necessary and required to purchase any of these tools. All were aghast at the high price of the wedge, for it seemed smaller, older and more beat up than the rest. Finally one brave person got up enough courage to ask the Devil why there was such an amazing difference in the price. The Devil replied . . .
"It is because this is the one tool that I can use when all the other's fail. Let me get that little wedge into a man's consciousness and it opens the way for all the other things. That tiny wedge has opened more doors for me than all of the other tools combined."
It is so easy to become discouraged when things are not going the way we want them to. When we become discouraged our hearts feel low and we become weak and susceptible to things we normally wouldn't even give a thought to. Sometimes it seems like it's not just "one of those days" . . . but "one of those weeks." Those are the times that I just fall on my knees, and turn to the Saviour, for that is when I need Him most of all. I trust in His promises . . . to lift me up when I am down, to pick me up when I fall, to carry me when I feel like I can just not move forward another step of the way.
To each of us He extends the wonderful invitation . . .
“Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” ~Matthew 11:28-30
Rest . . . I know which tool I'd rather take hold of . . . and I know which yoke I'd rather wear. To me the choice is easy . . .
I did a little moxy little girl yesterday afternoon when I was playing with my pencils and paints. To me she seems to say . . . "Bring it on boys! Anything you can do I can do better! I'll be posting her in her entirety HERE later today.
I made some cute cupcakes yesterday for the little fella next door. I sure miss having kids around, and my grandsons live too far away to be able to spoil on a daily basis, so it's really nice that I have a little boy right next door that I can make treats for once in a while. He doesn't seem to mind one bit! I used my ordinary vanilla cupcake recipe and then I decorated the tops with Vanilla Buttercream and a few odds and sods. To make the ears, I cut through large marshmallows, getting about four slices from each. This created a lovely oval shape. I dipped the cut edges into some pink sprinkles. The cheeks are Raffeallo chocolates, carefully sliced in half, and for the nose a pink sugar decoration. The eyes are pink dragees and I added a tiny sugar flower. I thought they turned out quite cute!
*Easter Bunny Cupcakes*
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups sugar
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegetable shortening, room temperature
(Crisco, Trex, White Flora)
3/4 cup milk
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 large eggs
A quantity of Vanilla Butter cream icing (see below)
various decorations (marshmallows, coloured candies, etc.)
Pre-heat the oven to 180*C/350*F. Line 18 muffin cups with paper cupcake liners. Set aside.
Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl to combine. Add the shortening, milk, vanilla and eggs. Beat with an electric whisk until all the ingredients are just blended. Spoon equal amounts into the paper liners in the muffin cups, filling each one no more than 2/3 full.
Bake for 20 to 22 minutes, or until they test done. (A toothpick inserted in one should come out clean and they should bounce back when lightly touched with a fingertip.) Remove from the pans immediately to wire racks to cool completely before continuing.
Once they are completely cooled, frost and decorate as you wish.
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
4 cups sifted icing sugar
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp vanilla
Place the softened butter into a large bowl. Beat in 2 cups of the icing sugar. Then beat in the milk and the vanilla. Gradually beat in the remaining 2 cups of icing sugar until the icing is thick enough to be of the right spreading consistency. You may not need all of the sugar.
These lovely little Easter Cupcakes have been my entry into an Easter Cake Contest being run by Julia of A Slice of Cherry Pie. This is the third year she has run this contest. All you have to do to get in on the fun is to bake a cake or little cakes for Easter, and then post about them on your blog, including a link to Julia's event. (closing date April 2oth) Hop on over (no pun intended) to read all the details, and Happy Easter!