The family on Cedar Lane Farm

The family on Cedar Lane Farm
These are the people I love! That's my sweet mama in the middle. I wonder what she's thinking.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My Christmas "Ah-ha" moment.

As I study the scripture this Advent season, I dwell on one particular aspect of the story this year.  During a devotional time at my women's group a couple of weeks ago, the text mentioned "swaddling clothes".  We talked about what we thought swaddling clothes were in those days.  Being a group of women ranging in age from 45 to 82, we had all read the stories hundreds of times and we have all decided in our minds what swaddling clothes were.  We came to the conclusion that they were strips of cloth wrapped around the newborn child, probably a little firmly (like a newborn blanket is wrapped tightly around a baby in the hospitals today). 

Strips of cloth.  His mother wrapped Him in strips of cloth.

We finished our devotional, went on to our yearly Christmas dinner and then finished up with our gift exchange.  I received a nice cookbook from my secret pal and a pretty ornament for my tree.  But, during all of this holiday celebrating, I couldn't put the thoughts of the "swaddling clothes" out of my head. 

When I arrived home, I picked up my Bible and looked up the burial of Jesus' body after He was crucified.  They wrapped His body in strips of clean linen cloth.  "Ah-ha!"  The Lord was wrapped in the same way at His birth that He was wrapped at His death. 

Strips of cloth.  I have no doubt that His mother, Mary, helped wrap Him in strips of cloth, once again.

I'm sure most or all of the people in those days were wrapped the same way as Christ was, but for the Bible to put this picture in my mind, at this time of year, leads me to once again think of why Jesus came.  He was born to die.  He was born for me, to die for me.  The parallell of the "swaddling clothes" brings the Birth story full circle again.  I always knew this.  But, just having it justified once more, in scripture, in a new way, gives me another reason to really again celebrate Christmas this year.

And while we will have gift exchanges on Christmas morning and a trip to the extended family's home an hour away, lots of food and visiting, my Savior will not be far from my thoughts.  As I unwrap my gifts, and as I watch my family unwrap their gifts, I will think of Jesus as my Savior that was "gift-wrapped" for all of us.  Twice.

Merry Christmas to the Christ child.  Happy Birthday to my Lord and Savior. 

Good tidings of great joy to all of you.


Monday, December 5, 2011

Another favorite! GRANOLA!!

I am going to share another of my favorite recipes with you today.  Homemade Granola.  John and I eat this with milk in the morning for breakfast and in the evenings for a quick snack before bedtime.  It's so good.  But, the best thing about this granola is you know what you're eating!  Here goes........

Begin by adding the butter....YUM!!  Real butter, not that fake stuff.  Melt it in a medium-sized sauce pan, very slowly.  When it is completely melted, add the honey and salt.  Do not boil this mixture.  Set aside.

In a bowl, mix the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon/sugar, wheat germ and nuts.  I prefer pecans and almonds, but you can use what you love the most.  Tonight, I just used pecans. 

Mix this together and add the butter/honey mixture.  Stir well.  All of these ingredients are gonna get to know each other very quickly.  Pour this wonderful-smelling concoction onto a well-greased (I spray with canola spray) cookie sheet pan.  Spread it out evenly and try to pat down with the back of the spoon. 

Bake this for 10 - 15 minutes, until it looks like it's browning a bit, remove from the oven.  Using a spatula, press down while hot.  Let cool, remove from pan and store in air-tight container.  Remember, to prevent the granola from sticking to your pan (and having to pry it out with a hammer and other barn tools), remove from the pan when it's cooled enough to touch.


Homemade Granola

3 cups of uncooked oats
1 stick and 1Tbl butter
2/3 cup honey or sorghum
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 tbl salt
1 Tbl cinnamon/sugar mixture
1/2 cup wheat germ
3/4 cup nuts, any type

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Follow directions above.