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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Simple pleasures (simple good)…




Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
    burst into jubilant song with music
;
Psalms 98:4 (NIV)

Shout for joy (why not?)! Burst into jubilant song (okay, lets!) The blessings found within simple pleasures are just that…simple. If you cannot find a reason for joy then perhaps you need to peel away some layers (might I suggest that you simplify?) He is leading me down the path of simple pleasures, reminding me that for all the other stuff in my life, I don’t even need to turn my head to see a blessing. Sometimes it’s a simple as a refocus…the very thing you were about to look past…

when ice cream and snickerdoodles meet, 

it's called an a-doodle.
Were you aware that this week (July 9) lays claim to National Sugar Cookie Day? Who even thinks up these things?… Remember, in our world, there is always a reason to give thanks, and if a day of celebration for a humble cookie can’t make you smile at least a little, you have much bigger things to pray about…

When I stumbled upon the holiday, I called my BFF because she’s my easiest and most reliable co-conspirator for spontaneous praise (she and I can and likely will celebrate ANYTHING!!) Before I could get it all out…she’d offered to make her award-winning Snickerdoodles. I could do no less than to offer to make ice cream for sandwiches, or A-doodles, as we call ‘em. I was happy all day.


Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary of the Bible says this about Psalms 98,
 “If the grace of God put a new heart into our breasts, it will put a new song into our mouths. Let this new song be sung to the praise of God, in consideration of the wonders he has wrought. “
God said that the simple fact of His redeeming Grace in your life means it’s time to get your praise on. It’s an attitude readjustment…learning to pay attention to what’s been there all along, a refocus. Relishing simple pleasures is so much more about appreciation…the blessings have always been there, but did you have clear eyes to see? Did you take the opportunity to appreciate that which God had already laid before you? Were you, are you paying attention?

On National Sugar Cookie Day (which apparently isn’t even a real holiday), I got it. Simple Pleasures. Simple Praise. Simple Good. I didn’t need a real holiday, and that is the point. When you think about the goodness of God, when you consider what you deserve and yet what you’ve got, you’ve got to get your praise on. And when you have co-conspirators, family, friends, a community who celebrates you when you dance, lifts you to dance when you’re too tired or too weary, or dances for you when you cannot, you know the joy of simple pleasures. You know simple joy. You know that God is good. (simple, right?)


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Today’s Feast: World’s Simplest Vanilla Ice Cream (at least I think so)

Back story-I have always wanted to be the woman who kept a well-enough stocked pantry to be able to pull things like this off without a trip to grocery. I’m getting there…

Ingredients
1 quart half and half
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 t vanilla (good and all natural)

Method
Pour well chilled half and half into a chilled bowl with the sweetened condensed milk. Add in the vanilla, taste, then beat with an electric mixer to combine ingredients completely. It’s so much easier to ensure the ingredients are well incorporated by using the mixer; the ingredients are cold, the densities are different, save yourself the grief…this should be easy, remember?

Pour into your ice cream freezer and process according to directions. Transfer to a sealable container and store in the freezer before serving.

Making it sexy….add in any or all of the following to the base before freezing:
·        Ground ginger
·        Fresh fruit (well drained)
·        Chips (chocolate, butterscotch)


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