Sunday, June 26, 2011


I wrote here about my first summer read called "One Thousand Gifts" where the author encourages us to give thanks in everything...literally everything. To understand that every joy in life (even the littlest things) are gifts from God and by giving thanks always we learn to be content and (dare I say) joyful! The bible mentions the greek word "eucharisteo" many, many times meaning "to be thankful." 

Yesterday was a really great summer day. I had so much to be thankful for. Cinnamon Girl Cupcakes (my cupcake business) had it's first catering gig for a wedding, the sun was out, and Truman had the day off. My heart was bursting with thanks and I couldn't help but continue to add "gifts" to my journal all day. I felt so happy and loved yesterday--basking in all of God's sweet glory.

 After we delivered cupcakes, we found this adorable little hole-in-the-wall in Firth, NE called Homestead. Pretty good food, too!

 We are so weird.

 The Mill on 48th and Prescott in Lincoln is our favorite spot. We miss this place so much. Omaha has nothing compared to it. We spent the entire evening drinking coffee and relaxing on the front patio. Watching the sun go down and feeling the slight summer breeze float in was the perfect ending to the day.

 Had to make a quick stop at Sunken Gardens.
 Tried to take a picture together...didn't work.
A few "gifts" from my day...
53. Green, fluffy fields
54. Perfect rows of fields
55. Sun creating a "fog" over the hills
56. Humid summer evening
57. Small town charm
58. Windows rolled down
59. Damp skin
61. When he rubs my back in public
63. Imperfections
65. Coffee shop patio
66. Unexpected meeting of a friend
67. Casual conversation
69. A familiar feeling of home
72. Knee slapping songs

How do you live out eucharisteo?
Thursday, June 23, 2011

Summer Goals

Last summer was just okay. I enjoyed the slow pace of life in Central City/Grand Island and I listened to great music, but we didn't really do anything fun. We didn't do anything to soak up the precious time of summer. I am a HUGE summer person and I can't stand wasting a day of sunshine. Of course since I'm a grown up now I can't just spend every day sleeping in and laying at the pool (darn) but I have found a way to enjoy as much summer time as possible...a goal list! 

I decided that if I was going to make this summer special I was going to have to plan it out (not all planning--spontaneous adventures can be just as fun). So here's my list so far...

1. Visit the Omaha Farmer's Market
Haven't done this since I was a little lass and I'm living in Omaha now soooo....

2. Visit Lincoln Farmer's Market
I really, really, really miss the Haymarket

3. Jazz on the Green
Never been. But I've heard it's a blast.

4. Miletta Vista Winery
This is the most beautiful winery I have been to in Nebraska. It sits on a hill in St. Paul and has the most beautiful scenery. I plan on sipping wine, sitting on the deck, and watching the sun go down.

5. Slattery Vintage Estates
We are going "Glamping" my friends. Yes, Glamorous Camping. I thought this only existed in Montana (I looked into it as a honeymoon possibility) so I was thrilled to find out about this winery outside of Lincoln. Trums and I have booked a night in July when they have a bluegrass concert. Woo!

6. Holy Family Shrine
We live really close to thing. I have driven by it a million times and need to finally get up there to see what it's all about.

7. Kayak down the Might River Platte
This is one of my favorite memories of last summer. The scenery isn't breathtaking or anything, but it's very peaceful...and a great workout for the arms.

8. Roca Berry Farm
I know nothing about this farm! But it looks like something fun to do. Any comments?

9. Arbor Day Farms
We went to Arbor Day Farms last fall but it was after the leaves had fallen...kind of pointless! I'd love to go in the summer when everything is green. I'd also like to do a little wine tasting.

I am always down for more suggestions!
Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Best Snack Ever

I tend to snack on things that aren't usually considered healthy (ice cream, chips, chex mix, etc.) but I've been really trying to watch what I eat this summer. NOT because I'm trying to lose weight (I'm trying to gain weight actually) but because I feel that I need to put less junk into my body. If you know me well, you know that I am the pickiest person walking the Earth. I play it safe at restaurants and if it smells bad, I assume it tastes even worse. This has makes the whole "eating healthy" thing very hard.

I have been following this new website called Rooted Wellbeing. They focus on a holistic diet and give great recipes through their newsletters. This recipe has been my favorite so far.

2-3 bananas, peeled and cut in half
1/4 C. Cacao powder (I used a bar and chopped it into pieces)
1/4 C. coconut oil
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
2 T. honey, maple syrup, coconut nectar, or agave
pinch of sea salt

1. Cover plate with wax paper
2. Freeze for 1 hour
3. Place remaining ingredients in sauce pan and melt over low heat on stove, constantly stirring, until smooth and combined
4. Remove bananas from freezer and dip into chocolate sauce
5. Place back in freezer for 1-2 hours
**they suggested putting popsicle sticks in the bananas before freezing, I just didn't have any**

If anyone has any good books or websites on holistic eating (that isn't too extreme for my picky taste) then please send them my way!!
Monday, June 13, 2011

Summer Reading List

There are so many books that I'm wanting to read. I narrowed my list down to a couple books I'd really like to start this summer. If anyone has any other reading suggestions I'm all ears!

Yummy Recipes

I always appreciate when a blogger shares a good recipe. Since both my coffee cake and apple butter turned out, I wanted to share the recipes I used.

You can find the recipe for the King Arthur Cinnamon-Streusel Coffee Cake here.

The apple butter is a little more complicated... Like I said earlier, I wanted to make something similar to what I had at Bread & Cup. On their menu, they said they used apples, cinnamon, cane sugar, and vanilla. So simple! But not a single recipe online called for vanilla or cane sugar so I had to do a little experimenting. The results were great--not quite like Bread & Cup's but I'll get there eventually. Here's what I did:

1. Peel, cube, and core 4 granny smith apples & scatter in crock pot
2. In a medium bowl, mix together 1 1/2 cups of cane sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons of cinnamon, 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a pinch of salt
3. Pour the mixture over the apples and mix well
4. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour
5. Reduce heat to low and cook 9 to 11 hours, stirring occasionally
6. Uncover and continue cooking on low 1 hour (stir with whisk for smoothness)

If you'd like the unedited version, go here.

If anyone has any great recipes please share :)
Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sunday with the Faeh's

This was the first Sunday in a long time that Truman and I got to spend together without work or other commitments. I have really come to appreciate the time we get together since it can seem scarce most weeks. It was a fun day and I am so thankful the Lord blessed us with it.

Truman had to study for a while so I decided to make some magic in the kitchen.

I had leftover topping from my cupcakes the other day so I made coffee cake. Call me crazy, but I sleep better knowing that I get to wake up and eat something yummy in the morning.

Little miss Coco has been naughty this past week by leaving little surprises on the carpet...  She spent Sunday afternoon repenting and reading the good word.

These little "surprises" have left our small apartment smelling not-so-fresh so I bought a new candle. We can start breathing through our noses again!

We listened to Ryan Adams all afternoon. I will never grow tired of him.

I ate at Bread & Cup in Lincoln for the first time last night and we had the most delicious apple butter. I was inspired to make my own so it's sitting in the crock pot right now. I keep sneaking a smell every half hour.
It was a wonderful afternoon. I used to think that worship was done in a church and needed to have music, but I spent the whole day worshiping and praising God for every little gift.
Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Streusel Cupcakes

I spent some quality time with good ol' Martha Stewart in the kitchen last night. I have been looking for new cupcake recipes to try and her cinnamon streusel recipes seemed like the perfect treat for breakfast.
Let me tell you...they were.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

"The greatest thing is to give thanks for everything. He who has learned this knows what it means to live...He has penetrated the whole mystery of life: giving thanks to everything."

For the past year, I have acknowledged my sinfulness in discontent and tried to find joy and peace in my savior alone. Some days it worked, but most days I fell back into the same pattern. Though I have honestly loved every moment since the day I said "I do" (almost 2 months ago!), I have been complaining and drowning in discontent non-stop. My apartment isn't cute because we don't have any money for decorations. We can't go to a music festival because we can't afford it. She always has cute clothes and I'm wearing things from two years ago. Why can't you pick up after yourself? I feel like your mom.... I catch myself thinking (or whining) these things and I just think "I can be so ungrateful".

I had been reading Ann Voskamp's blog for a while and was very interested in her book called "One Thousand Gifts". I ordered it a week ago and have been buried in the book for the past two days. I'm telling you, this could not have come at a better time! The way she explains joy and the meaning of a full life is spot on. My words cannot do her book justice, but the gist of the book is to slow down in this world that is addicted to speed and give thanks for what God has given us. "Joy is the realest reality, the fullest live, and joy is always given, never grasped. God gives gifts and I give thanks and I unwrap the gift given: joy."

I am not deserving of joy. Every piece of happiness I have in this life is simply a gift of God. Nothing else. I did not earn it. I did not find it. It was graciously given to me by my Father. Man, that really puts everything I think I need into perspective.

Ann challenges us to make a list of 1,000 things we are thankful for. You don't just do it all in one sitting. You carry a little booklet around with you and make it a point to slow down and record the little things you miss-- the little things that truly create this complex thing we call joy. I have also decided to photograph my "gifts". I started my list today. 1. The beauty and softness in a white doily. 2. The dimming of the summer sun as a storm brews. 3. Beautiful simplicity of raw wood. 4. The mulled sound of an old recording. 5. Soft sounds of Hem on a summer evening. 6. Tiny Coco snuggled in the small of my back.

I was zooming in on my mason jar when this cute little nose showed up in my lens begging for some loving.
I understand now that the fall was all about ingratitude. "Humanity's discontent with all that God freely gives" (One Thousand Gifts). I want to see every beautiful thing that comes my way for what it truly is: a gift.

"I have learned how to be content with whatever I have. I know how to live on almost nothing or with everything. I have learned the secret of living in every situation, whether it is with a full stomach or empty, with plenty or little."
(Philippians 4:11-12)

Would love some feedback on how everyone lives life with a thankful heart!


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