Archive for the 'Tips' Category

Published by Kelly Wilson on 24 Nov 2020

Thanksgiving 2020

This is a different kind of Thanksgiving – because this is a different kind of year. I am writing this post to be your pep squad and hopefully idea provider, as you get ready. Even though it will be different, it can be really good.
 
May I encourage you to look at Psalm 136 NLT for inspiration to be grateful.
 
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!
His faithful love endures forever.

 
The Hebrew word for “good” in this passage is tobe, which means good, pleasant, agreeable, excellent, rich, valuable in estimation, kind, right, glad, happy, prosperous. Sometimes I think of God as Holy – which of course He is. But as when I think of Him as this type of good, it makes my heart feel gratitude.
 
So even though things around the earth are really challenging – God is still good. He worthy to be the One we say thank You to.

This year because of the CDC guideline that it is safer for all of us to celebrate with the people, who live in our households, you might not have all of your loved ones at the table with you. So you can approach things differently.

You can turn up the fancy or turn down the fancy.

This could be year to break out the china you never use. Drink from the goblets your grandmother passed down to you. Get dressed up. But it could be a year to eat less formally. Make it easy. Change up the menu – my family prefers fried chicken so we have that with a small turkey breast.

I print these on card stock. They remind us to thank God for His blessings.
  • If you are cooking and this is not usually your thing, plan what you are going to have before heading to the grocery store. Once you write down your menu, think about what you will cook and what you will need to buy to make it. Many barbecue joints and local restaurants have great mac & cheese, sweet potato casserole and corn bread. Local bakeries might be thrilled to supply the dessert.
  • This is a great year to get the family involved with the cooking. My children (25, 23 and 14) play music on our speakers and bring lots of good energy to chopping, stirring, baking and cleaning.
  • In my planning I try to think about when I should cook the things so they come out about the right time. This year there’s less pressure because we’ll eat when the food is done.

I print these on card stock. They help remind us to thank God.

www.betterdaybetterlife.com

Make time to proactively spend time being thankful. Before, during or after dinner take some time to speak to God and one another about the reasons we are thankful this year.

  • After dinner, get help from all hands to cleanup before playing board games, making Zoom calls, watching football and napping.
  • Think about how you want to spend the balance of the weekend. For many of us, the COVID wise choice is chill-laxing around the house. But whatever we do – let’s try to carry the spirit of gratefulness wherever we go.

Published by Kelly Wilson on 14 Jun 2017

Make ’em feel loved: How to bake a cake from butter, sugar and flour…

A few days after coming home from the grocery store my younger son, Kyler, said “I feel so loved when I see cranberry juice in the refrigerator.”

I smiled. Kyler loves cranberry juice. But he is the only one in our house who drinks it. When he is home from college, I buy it. I was good to hear that it shows love.

I think my husband feels loved when he smells homemade baked goods in our oven. That’s how his mom showed love. She regularly baked cakes from scratch.

After we got married, when I would take a box cake out of the cabinet he would ask me what was about to do with that. Then he would call his mom to make him a cake. This actually made me jealous, so I set out to learn. She tried to teach me, but she was a cook who didn’t write recipes down and since I didn’t grow up baking from scratch, I didn’t learn well that way.

I was determined to master this skill and I tried dozens of recipes and made lots of cakes that smelled like cake, but they were NOT cake. They were like corn bread  and only smelled like cake. Then eureka! I finally found a recipe that worked.

Cake

That was over 27 years ago. I found my go-to recipe in Woman’s Day Magazine. It was a winner! The first cake that was really a great cake. It has been a staple over the years. I bet I typically bake this cake every other month or so. It gives me (and now you) a way to celebrate and show love. Please make it for “Father’s Day” to show your appreciation! Cooking from your heart is a great way to show kindness.

Ingredients:

2 cups all purpose flour

(You can make half the flour whole wheat to make a healthier cake)

2 cups granulated sugar

1 teaspoon baking soda

A pinch of salt

1 cup water

1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

Two sticks of butter

Two large eggs

1/2 cup plain yogurt or buttermilk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cake post 3

Directions:

Grease (with butter) and flour a large Bundt pan. Set your oven to 350 degrees F.

Put the water ad cocoa powder into a small saucepan. Cut the butter into small chunks and add to the water/cocoa. Stir over medium heat until mixture comes to a gentle boil and the butter melts.

Mix all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking soda and salt) in a large bowl.

Carefully pour the water/butter/cocoa mixture into the dry ingredients and stir. (The whole  mixture usually cools down enough so that the eggs don’t cook when added. But if it is still really warm, let it cool down.)

Crack the eggs and mix them into the batter until incorporated well. Next stir in the yogurt and vanilla.

Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan and bake at 350° for 35 to 40 minutes.  (Test for doneness after 32 minutes, by inserting a toothpick near the center of the cake. If it comes out wet like batter, cook for another 5-7 minutes. If it comes out like the cake is baked, remove from the oven.)

For the icing, I place a half a bag of powdered sugar in a mixing bowl. (I use the Domino Confectioners 2-Pound Bag)  Then I mix 2 teaspoons of cocoa power with 3 tablespoons of milk in a small bowl. Using an electric mixer I begin to blend to sugar with the chocolate milk a tablespoon at a time. Once this starts to come together as a thick icing, I add a pat (1 tablespoon) of butter for creaminess. This is some what of a delicious art, because you may have to add more milk or sugar to get the consistency you prefer. But the tasting makes it worth every iteration. Once the cake cools, spread on the icing and hope your people don’t cut the cake, before you can take a picture and post it on social media.

When you bake this cake, I hope you will feel like a particular person from the New Testament. Her name was Tabitha, which means “gazelle.” She was known for doing simple things that greatly blessed the people around her.

“There was a believer in Joppa named Tabitha (which in Greek is Dorcas.) She was always doing kind things for others and helping the poor.” Acts of the Apostles 9:36 NLT

Happy Father’s Day

Kelly

 

 

Published by Kelly Wilson on 24 Apr 2017

A-B-C Affirmations

Last Father’s Day, my family and I were riding in our vehicle. We stumbled upon something we now call A-B-C Affirmations.

It started because the kid’s dad is great at sharing words of affirmation. These are words that talk about a person’s character traits or ways of being in a positive light. So we decided to give him some affirmations to celebrate his special day.

Someone said, “Hey let’s give one for each letter of the alphabet. We can go around the truck.” I’m not sure who started, but it was really meaningful to him and fun for us. It was so meaningful, that he took out his smart phone and started recording the moment.

For the rest of that calendar year and going forward, we do A-B-C Affirmations for birthdays, Father’s Day, Siblings Day and now coming up Mother’s Day. We even did them for Jesus, at the CHRISTmas party for our Bible study group.

I share this idea in hopes you will take a few minutes to affirmations for your Mom and anyone else you want to show love to. The following will help you see how it works, it’s the list we created in March, for our son KJ’s 22nd birthday:

A – Abiding in the Lord (Said Dad)

B – Believer (Said Mom)

C – Chicken finger lover (Said Koah, his 11-year-old sister)

D – Determined (Said Kyler, his 20-year-old brother)

E – Earth shaking laugh when coaching volleyball and playing 2K

F – Fashion sense – KJ loves the two jacket look

G – Gangster (little OG) Koah says because KJ’s co-workers call his dad the OG

H – Humble

I – Identical to Kenny (Said by his Dad)

J – Jumper – Says mom, per the photo that KJ took touching the ceiling to show his hops.

KJ Ceiling

K- Knowledgeable of history

L – Lively, Lit (hyped) Likeable

M – Me (said again by the name sharing Kenneth Vance Wilson, Sr.) millennial, marvelous

N – Not worried

0 – Opinionated and original

P – Peanut Butter Eater (The whole fam says this because KJ is largely a non-meat eater.) He is also precious, valuable and needed.

Q – Quite the gentleman, quick silver the super hero

R – Road observant (Says mom, to whom he is always giving driving advice)

S – Shopper at H&M

T – Thinker (Says Kyler, a student at OSU)

U – Unafraid

V – Vance-tastic, KJ’s middle name is Vance

W – Westbrook (For similarities to Russell Westbrook)

X – Xanadocious (The quality of xanady) X is a tough letter and we often make up words for this one. I believe Kyler made up this word.

Y – Young

Z – Zealot for Christ

We don’t always write these down, but KJ said I could share them for this post. Thanks son!

IMG_2181

Please let me know how your A-B-C Affirmations go. This can give us all some new ideas!

Continued Blessings – Better Day Kelly

 

 

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