Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas. {Our Christmas Card}

I can't tell you how blessed I am to know so many of you and have you in my life. Whether you are a friend I can hug in person, or a friend that I only know via this internet thing,  I count you all as a beautiful gifts. I pray that wherever you are, you might experience some true rejoicing this season. In our weakness (and weariness) He is strong. 

Merry Christmas!

Monday, December 17, 2012

A good story.

I love a good story.
My friend, Amy, along with her husband, John, have been living a long, hard story trying to adopt their son, Davis, who lives overseas and happens to have Down syndrome. Today, they were able to meet him.
Amy's post will make you cry tears of joy, and it will give you hope.
Don't we all need a little hoping today?

Go and read it here.
Be blessed by their story.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


Photo by her.

We are celebrating 12 years today of marriage today. 
Although we haven't laughed all day every day, knowing him, and being his wife, have been the best part of my life.  
I'm so glad we chose each other, and still do.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

PinterTest Kitchen: Spaghetti Squash with Bacon, Parmesan and Garlic and Sugar Cookie Bars {Not necessarily together}

Nothing quite says Christmas as spaghetti squash.
I had one in my pantry, and I needed to use it.
A few weeks back I pinned Spaghetti Squash with Bacon, Parmesan and Garlic, and I knew that someday I would make it.
I just didn't know it would be in December.
This recipe was so easy.
1. Bake squash
2. fry bacon in garlic
3. Shred squash into "spaghetti" with a fork.
4. Add bacon.
5. Add parmesan.
6. Add salt and pepper.
7. Eat.
It's that easy! And it was amazing. Real comfort food.
The only downfall, is that it doesn't make much. It's most definitely a side dish that might serve four. On this particular night, it was the main dish that served two adults. One kid wouldn't touch it and the other one said she liked the bacon, but not those "weird noodles".

I loved it and could have eaten the entire thing if I didn't have any manners.

Click here for the recipe.
PinterTest Kitchen number two: Sugar Cookie

Bruce loves sugar cookies.
I think that making sugar cookies is painful, and I'm horrible at it.
Frosting them and trying to make them pretty stresses me out. 
Stress, I tell you. Tension headache, ibuprofen inducing, I need to soak in a hot tub while eating Schwan's Peppermint Stick ice cream kind of stress.
So when my friend, Sara, told me about this recipe that her family had been making (and devouring) I pinned it immediately.
I suggested to Talia that we make a big Christmas tree.
She decorated it herself. (Smart girl not to ask me for much help.)
She dug through the old Halloween candy and found a yellow Starburst for the star. "It has to have a star!"
Ella came home from school and dug into our trunk supply.
I think her creation turned out really cute.
Everything about this recipe is yummy.
The frosting is tasty.
The crust is made of butt-ah.
It makes a ton for sharing, or not.
Get the recipe here.

Thank you, Sara, for sharing the recipe with me.
My entire family thanks you.
Especially Bruce.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Ten on Ten:: December 2012

Take a photo every hour for ten consecutive hours on the tenth of each month. 
Document a day of your life and find beauty among the ordinary moments. 
I spent the entire day at home.
That doesn't happen hardly ever for me.

Talia had preschool this morning, which meant I was alone for part of the day.
I have been craving quiet lately, and this morning hit the spot.
I wrapped a few gifts, ordered a few more, and watched a favorite Christmas movie while I checked a few things off my list.
I spent time thinking about how hopeful I feel this season, and how weary I felt a year ago. In my heart I rejoiced.
Print from here.
I cleaned closets, and listened to some old friends like Bing and Diana Krall.
This afternoon Talia and I tested a new recipe. (More on that later this week)
I made Turkey Noodle Soup for dinner. Are we the only people still eating Thanksgiving turkey?
This little nativity found a home on a Fiesta plate in my kitchen tonight. I bought it years ago in Ecuador, and the blond Jesus still makes me smile.
If anyone is ready to open presents, it's Ella. She was very interested in what appeared under the tree today.

She won't have to wait much longer, which panics me slightly.
I am not quite ready.
Are you?
ten on ten button

Monday, December 3, 2012


I posted this Word on Instagram and shared it with a few friends last week.  I came across this notecard again today and wondered if somebody else out there needs this reminder today like I did?!
Because I so often don't know what I am doing, it gives me great joy knowing that he loves to help. I hope you are encouraged today. He loves to help you, too.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

WORD. {Happy Thanksgiving}

Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what's best---
as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You're in charge!
You can do anything you want!
Yes. Yes. Yes.

Matthew 6:9b-13
The Message

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Date Night & What I watched on TV last night.

It's been a crazy couple of days since I last posted.
Saturday night I went on a date with these two in Kansas City.
I said, "Give me, Casanova." Ha.
We dined at a favorite place of ours. I ate almond crusted trout over a lemon orzo that was so good, I woke up and craved it for breakfast the next morning. Remember that scene in the parent trap when they are camping and the dad's girlfriend says that she'll wait for breakfast because she doesn't eat trout, and then she says, "What's for breakfast?"and the girls yell, "Trout". I could never imagine eating trout for breakfast until this weekend. Now I dream of it.  And I ate it alongside my favorite twins. :)

After dinner we went to see Bruce Springsteen.

We have recently caught on that the best seats are really behind the stage. They are generally less expensive and they are the best seats to see the band and backstage.
I posted this pic on Instagram that made a few wonder if the Boss needed a "bro".
Bruce is ripped, I tell ya---Springsteen and Jost. :)
A couple of weeks ago a local tv station asked if they could interview Meg and me about Craft Weekend, and last night it aired. I couldn't decide if I was going to watch it, or not. My stomach hurt and I turned the tv off more than once right before it aired. In the end, I am so happy I watched. Meg looks great, and the ladies all look so happy. I miss those girls. Here's the story that Kakenews did on Whatever Craft Weekend.

If you wanna get on the waiting list to come, email us at It would be so fun to have you join us!
I need to keep moving this morning---did I mention that I have 25ish people coming to our house for a Thanksgiving meal this week? I've only been waiting 12 years to host and this year that turkey dream is coming true!
Happy Thanksgiving Eve to you!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Family Pictures

A couple of weeks ago my friend Megan, of Megan Hein Photography, stepped up to take our family picture.  We're not an easy bunch. Ella doesn't love to have her picture taken, Talia strikes a pose a little too easily, I am exhausted and grumpy before we even get there, and Bruce just rolls with all of us girls. It's work to get it done. Megan conquered all of our issues, and I am happy. Head on over to her blog to see what I've seen so far.

By the way, she also took our Christmas picture, but you won't see that today. You'll have to wait for that one. ;)

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Pumpkin Cheesecake

I have been a pumpkin cheesecake fan for as long as I can remember.
I'm not someone who wants to eat it in February. I certainly don't think about it in August, but around September 28th I can't stop thinking...
Pumpkin Cheesecake.
PUMPKIN cheesecake.
I craaaaave it.

In October, I start saying things to Bruce's mom like, "I really hope you're okay with pumpkin cheesecake at Thanksgiving again because I'm making it even if I'm the only one who eats it." 

Guess what? I'm not the only one who eats it.

I wish that were the case because then I could eat it for breakfast, lunch, snack, and dinner on Black Friday. A little known not quite truth is that it's called black friday because you're supposed to wear head to toe black the day after that much food is consumed. 
This fall, I have been making this cheesecake (and this one!) for all of the Craft Weekends. In the past 30 days I have eaten more cheesecake than I care to admit. This is why I am declaring the entire month "Black November". Head to toe black all of November! Anyone with me?

It's that good.

Adapted from: The Kirby House Cookbook

Pumpkin Cheesecake
Crust ingredients
30 gingersnaps or 1 3/4 cups gingersnap crumbs
¼ c. white sugar
2 Tbs. butter melted.

Cheesecake filling
(3) eight ounces packages Philadelphia Cream Cheese
(3) large eggs
1 1/2 cup white sugar
½ cup brown sugar
1 15 ounce can of pumpkin
2 ½ Tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ginger
½ teaspoon cloves
2 tablespoons whipping cream
1 tsp vanilla

Whipped Cream
1 half pint of whipping cream
¼ cup white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla or 1 teaspoon maple flavoring

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

To make the crust:
Place gingersnaps in food processor and pulse until fine. In a bowl, stir gingersnap crumbs, butter and sugar until all are mixed very well. Line the bottom of a 9 inch springform pan with parchment paper.  Spray the paper and the sides of the pan with a cooking spray to coat. Place crumbs in the bottom of the pan and pat down for an even crust.

Making the filling:
Beat the cream cheese, sugars, and eggs in a large mixing bowl for two minutes.  Add the can of pumpkin, cornstarch, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, whipping cream, and vanilla. Beat until just mixed all together. Then pour over the crust.

Bake the cheesecake for approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes. When the cheesecake middle doesn’t wiggle much it’s done. Take it out and let it cool for 20 minutes. Run a knife around the outside of the cheesecake then release and remove the springform. Let the cheesecake cool completely. Don’t worry if the cheesecake has a crack in it. Whipping cream covers a multitude of sins.

Place the cheesecake in an airtight container until you’re ready to serve. This cheesecake can be made up to three days ahead of time.

When you are ready to serve, beat a half pint of heavy whipping cream, a generous ¼ cup of white sugar, and a teaspoon of vanilla. Or for fun, try a teaspoon of maple flavoring instead of the vanilla!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Ten on Ten:: November 2012

Take a photo every hour for ten consecutive hours on the tenth of each month. 
Document a day of your life and find beauty among the ordinary moments. 

It's Craft Weekend once again on the 10th! I spent a lot of time in the kitchen today, 
but we also ventured out for some fun away from the house, too.
I'm usually the first one up at the house, but not so today. 
After my coffee, I made the cinnamon roll frosting. Yum!

Every single apron made impresses me. 
We spent some time at our favorite antique store.
At the barn, I noticed this faucet. We used to have one pretty similar on the farm I grew up on in Minnesota. I thought of the many times I would stop to get a drink out of it.
We made a thrift store stop and I scored these glass christmas ornaments for a dollar! 
The ladies got down to crafting.
I made dinner with my good friends, Julie and Julia.
 I served this Spinach-Apple Salad. Make it. It's soooo good.
Because we ate salad, we could also eat a little cheesecake. 
I served Pam's and a pumpkin one. 

Shopping, eating, cooking, and crafting made for a happy 10th.
I hope yours a good one, too.

ten on ten button

Monday, November 5, 2012

WORD. {Warning, I'm not wearing any makeup}

Post run today I gazed up at the gorgeous maple in our yard. I had no idea when I took this picture how close I would seem. Oh well.
Enjoy this Word. I am carrying it with me this week.
Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything
 in the One who makes me who I am.
Phillipians 4:13
The Message

Friday, November 2, 2012


It's been a crazy couple of weeks around here: a birthday trip, my mom and dad staying four days longer because of the hurricane, lots of Craft Weekend, and just trying to keep up in general. I love having my camera phone with me.
It's not always the best picture, but it is captured. In years to come I will be reminded the good...and not so much. You'll see.

1. He was speaking my love language that Friday night.
2. God bless the farmers that get up before the sunrise.
3. Parents day at gymnastics class. Go Tal!
4. Apparently, I never said, "Don't draw on the couch."
(Not so least it's happy. And I'll admit, I've left it because after I got over being angry, it kind of makes me smile. And my couch is 15 years old, which is one step away from being donated to our youth room at church.)

1. Stingrays always seem to have a smile on their faces.
2. Cupcakes for the birthday girl from Babycakes.
3. My girls asked me to ride the barrels with them at a local Harvest festival.
4. Rainbow girl. Reminds me of someone else I know.

1. Harvest sunsets are gorgeous this time of year.
2. Trick or treating is the best motivation to get homework done.
3. A "bluejay" and a butterfly.
4. Ready to "Gather" in November. My cousin Rachel made this for me at the October Craft Weekend.

I'm linking up with Jeannett today.

@kimberleejost is where you'll find me on Instagram. 
 It's just fun.
 Happy November!

life rearranged

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


This morning I said, "Happy Birthday! Do you feel different now that you're not four anymore?"
She replied, "When I have fun, I'll feel like I'm five."
Good thing our day is full of fun over here.
I'd hate for her not to feel her age.

Happy Birthday to my favorite five year old!
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