Sunday 28 June 2009

Marie's Sunday Six Smile Makers

Welcome to my Sunday Six for this, the last week in June. Hasn't the month passed by quickly? I don't know where it has gone but I sure have had a lot to smile about!

We've had some gorgeous weather this past week, with very little rain. The gardens are at their most beautiful. Everywhere you look there is a riot of colour and fragrance. It's so very soul enriching. I just love nature, as you know. This past week we have been able to go for a lot of long walks across the orchards that surround us. Most of the way we can look right out over the Kent Weald and the views are breathtaking. You can see for absolutely miles and miles. It's amazing!

Getting to go to the Temple. I just love to go to the Temple and this past week was our Stake Temple Week. The youth were there on Wednesday night doing Baptisms and then on Friday Night Todd and I were able to go and do some work for ourselves. It was a really special evening. I had a very emotional and inspiring time. It was very precious to me. I just love being able to go to the Temple and doing work for those who have been waiting for so long to have their work done. If you aren't LDS you probably don't understand how special it is or how I might feel, and I'm not sure I could explain it to you. Just know that it is a very good feeling. It feels even better to be able to go there with the man I love. To be in such a Holy Place with your partner is very special indeed.

Yesterday was Helping Hands day for our church Stake. People from all over our church area gathered together at the Stake Centre to do some service for our community. There were several projects that we were able to participate in. It's always a great day and we always get a lot of work done. I love that our church is able to reach out into our communities and make a difference. God is love, and love is about service and serving others. It's just wonderful!

Yesterday there was also a Baptism at our Chapel. I just love Baptism's. It's always such a special time to be able to witness someone making this decision. There is always a very holy and spiritual feeling that abounds when someone is being Baptised. I suppose that is because it always takes you back to the day when you made this very same decision for yourself and how you felt at that time. There is always a really special feeling in the air and it is a most joyful occasion. I can honestly say that I have never been to a Baptism where I didn't feel the presence of the Holy Ghost very strongly. It's all quite wonderful!

Having friends for dinner makes me smile. I just love having company. Last evening we were lucky enough to have some friends over and I got to cook a special meal, one of my absolute favourite things to do! We relaxed over a tasty dinner and got to enjoy each other's company for several hours. It was a lovely time. Food somehow always tastes better when it is shared in good company!

Each one of you make me smile. I am so very grateful for your faithfulness in coming to my page each day and reading my words. You are all so very special to me. Your love and support mean the world to me and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

two thumbs up Pictures, Images and Photos

I tried out a new recipe yesterday. Isn't that one of the best things about having company for dinner? Getting to try out new recipes? I know! What am I like! (treating my dinner guests as guinea pigs!) It was totally delicious. The original recipe called for chicken legs, but I couldn't find any that I liked the look of and so I used breasts instead. Very brave, as breasts can often dry out and be quite tasteless. I used cornfed organic chicken breasts and they were meltingly tender. Everyone counted this as being delicious, so this tasty recipe got a two thumbs up all around the table!!

*Roast Chicken with Herbed Cheese*
Serves 4
Printable Recipe

The chicken in this recipe stays moist and delicious, whilst the cheese melts out to form a delicious sauce over the vegetables. I used breasts and they were wonderfully tender and tasty, not dry at all, and the vegetables, well . . . they were just scrumptious!

150g herbed cream cheese (Philadelphia cheese, with garlic and herbs, or Boursin)
1 tsp grated lemon zest
4 whole chicken legs (thigh and drumstick joints) OR
4 chicken breasts, skin on
2 leeks, cleaned, trimmed and cut into chunks
2 large parsnips, peeled, trimmed and cut into chunks
2 tsp olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Pre-heat the oven to 20-0*C/400*F. Mix the cream cheese in a small bowl with the lemon zest. Loosen the skin from the whole legs or from the breasts, and spread about 2 TBS of cheese in between the skin and the flesh on each. Press the skin back down over the cheese and season the meat with some salt and pepper. Set aside.

Bring a saucepan of lightly salted water to the boil. Add the parsnips and the leeks. Cook for 4 minutes. Drain well and then place them in a single layer in a baking dish. Drizzle with the olive oil and season well. Place the chicken pieces on top.

Roast for 40 minutes, by which time the skin on the chicken should be nice and brown and the cream cheese should have melted out to form a sauce on the vegetables. Make sure the vegetables are tender and the juices from the chicken run clear. If the vegetables need a bit longer, remove the chicken and keep warm and return the vegetables to the oven for a further 5 minutes or so.

Serve the chicken and vegetables portioned out onto 4 heated plates.

For dessert I had made the most delicious Blueberry Tart ever!! This was sooooo good! Hop on over to The English Kitchen to see more and get the recipe!


  1. Hi, dear Marie! Lovely weekend post...Sounds like you're having a great one! We're having a heat wave here to...we were at the coast yesterday, such fun! But we're melting a little bit from the heat--LOL! Thanks so much for your lovely comment and joining in on the giveaway. Will look our for you for a chat tonight--feels ages since we got to catch up! LOVE YOU HEAPS, sweet friend! :o) ((HUGS))

  2. My comment today is not so much a comment as a question: LDS baptise by total immersion but what would happen if someone came along who couldn't manage the baptism pool? I'm not criticising, just interested.

    love, Angie, xx

  3. What a great week you have had! Your six smile makers worked for me as well! I love that you are a blog missionary! You are terrific!

  4. Marie every time I look at the food you make I want to stick my head through the screen and bite a piece.

    Renee xoxo

  5. Dear Marie,
    You have had so many things to smile about. I share your feelings about going to the temple. It is hard to tell someone what it is like unless they have experienced it. I enjoy the feelings of peace and love I feel there. I can forget my worldly cares when I am in the temple. What a blessing.

    What did you do for Helping Hands? I think it is great to get involved with community service.

    I am glad that you have had such nice weather. We had a lovely week with temps in the 80s last week. Today it is 99 and they say it will be hotter next week so I guess our pleasant warm weather is over and HOT is here for the summer. I am glad that I have the pool to dip in to cool down.

    I wish that I could come to your house for dinner. I know that everything you make is delicious.

    Speaking of dinner I'd better get busy....It is my turn to cook today. I am taking it easy and making tacos, beans and spanish rice. I was too tired to go to the store after Claire left late last night and I have all the ingredients for Mexican food on hand.

    Have a great week. I send love, Lura

  6. Hi Marie!
    Great list! I think June has blown by - it's crazy! We had our community clean up day a couple of weeks ago. I really enjoy it too. It feels so good to get out and help people that need it. I love doing service.

    Your chicken looks so good. We have been doing a lot of grilling lately with the warm weather. I am always looking for good chicken recipes! I hope you have a wonderful week!


  7. so much to say about this post...first, the chicken looks fabulous! i'll be trying that soon!your photos are beautiful. and i love that little lego dinner picture!joey and my kids have been doing legos like crazy lately:)

    i agree about service-i love it when our stake or ward gets together to serve. its the best feeling! and i love attending baptisms, such a strong spirit there. i can't believe aubrey will be baptized this september!


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