Food for the Soul ~ Deuteronomy 7:9

Happy Sunday to you, friends! Hope you are enjoying a nice long weekend with family and friends, or at least relaxing before fall activities kick into high gear. Whatever place God has you in right now, I pray that you will know the faithfulness of the Father. I pray our hearts will be moved to obedience, so that we might please Him and experience the blessings of being His children.


Have a wonderful rest of the weekend!
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Creative Ways Link Party #17 and Features

Well, it's here! The last Creative Ways Link Party of August is upon us. Where did the month go? By now, most of you have started the school year with your kiddos. We still have a few days of break left, which is a good thing because I am sort of freaking out feeling a bit anxious about our curriculum and getting it all done on a daily basis. There's just so much knowledge I want to impart to the kiddos and it seems as though time is slipping away. I know we will get into a groove, but it's the anticipation that gets me. So, to escape from all that, I say we have a party! Who's with me?


I had such a great time going through all your links from last week's soiree. I love seeing familiar faces each week and am thrilled when new friends come to party with us too. It is truly staggering the amount of talent that is out in the blogosphere. I am humbled and honored to have you joining me to celebrate all your creative ways! Here were some of the standouts from last week's party:


Clockwise from top left

Pepperoni Calzones by Tastes of Lizzy T
What a great way to change up the weekly pizza night!
Book Page Hydraengas by Muslin and Merlot
I love anything made from book pages! These gorgeous orbs are no exception!
This sounds like the perfect salad to end the summer berry harvest.
7 Drawer Dresser with Chevron Top by Her Tool Belt
I love how she used parts from a pallet to make this beautiful piece of furniture. Such details!
Homemade Peppermint Patties by Born to Bake Forever
Be still, my beating heart! Who knew making peppermint patties was this easy?
Autumn Inspired Little Red Wagon by My Thrift Store Addiction
Such a sweet way to usher in the beauty of fall flowers!

If you missed these wonderful posts, be sure to click through their links to check them out! So, let's get right to this week's party, shall we? What have you been working on? I can't wait to see!

Link Party Guidelines
  • Please link up to 3 of your family-friendly DIY Projects, Crafts or Recipes...your Creative Ways
  • Please link to a specific post on your blog, not just your home page.
  • Please do not link up Etsy shops or giveaways
  • Please follow Posed Perfection by clicking on one of my pretty, colorful buttons on the sidebar, and let me know so I can follow you back.
  • I'd love for you to add the party button to your post, a visible link back on your post, or a link on a party page. We want your creative friends to join us too!
  • Be sure to visit at least 2 links and leave some comment love. 
  • By linking up to this party, your are giving authorization for your projects/recipes to be featured with a photo and a link back to your blog.
    Posed Perfection
    <a href="www.posedperfection.com" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1212.photobucket.com/albums/cc454/pianoprincessdesigns/creativewaysbutton_zps0fd67676.png~original" alt="Posed Perfection" width="250" height="177" /></a>

    I would love for you to start following me on BlogLovin' to ensure you get the latest posts. I can't wait to see all your Creative Ways!

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    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies ~ Just Because

    Hi Friends! I'm happy to see you here today! So, we're back from our little trip to Arizona, and while I sift through those pictures to share a little about our vacation, I decided I needed to make these Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies ~ just because.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    I'm not quite sure where this delicious little recipe came from, but it is definitely going to be making it into our cookie rotation. Not that we really have a "cookie rotation" per se, but doesn't it sound like a good idea? I thought you'd agree ;-)

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Here's what you need: butter, brown sugar, vanilla, light corn syrup, egg, flour, salt, pecans and chocolate chips.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    These start just like every other cookie with creaming together the butter and sugar, then add in the vanilla.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Next you'll beat in the corn syrup and the egg.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    You'll finish up by incorporating the flour and salt until it is a good workable dough.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Roll dough into 1-inch balls.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Then roll the dough balls into the chopped pecans.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Place on cookie sheet 2 inches apart, press firmly with thumb to make indention and bake for 11-13 minutes, or until cookies are firm.

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Remove to wire rack to cool completely. While the cookies are cooling, make the chocolate filling by microwaving some corn syrup for a minute, then add in the chocolate chips ~ stirring until the chips are melted. Pour into a ziplock bag, seal it and snip the corner. Pipe the filling onto cooled cookies. Watch out for the cookie thieves!

    Nutty Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    Chocolate Fudge Thumbprint Cookies

    1 cup butter, softened
    3/4 cup light brown sugar
    1 tsp. vanilla
    1/2 cup light corn syrup
    1 egg
    3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
    1/2 tsp. salt
    1 1/2 cups finely chopped pecans (or any other nuts you prefer)

    chocolate filling
    1/3 cup light corn syrup
    1 1/2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

    Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix together butter, brown sugar and vanilla in mixer on medium speed.  Beat in corn syrup and egg until incorporated. Slowly add in the flour and salt until blended. Roll dough into 1-inch balls, then roll in chopped pecans. (Alternately, one could mix the pecans in with the dough, then roll the dough into 1-inch balls.) Place 2 inches apart on ungreased cookie sheet. Press thumb into the center to create a deep indentation. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until firm. Remove to wire rack and cool completely. Prepare the the filling by heating the corn syrup in a microwave safe bowl for 1 minute. Stir in chocolate chips and continue stirring until chocolate is completely melted. Scrape filling into a pastry bag or small freezer zip top bag and seal. Snip off a small corner at the bottom of the bag and pipe filling into the thumbprint holes. Makes about 5 1/2 dozen cookies.

    **Disclaimer...my recipe for the cookies was not clear on when to pipe the filling into the indentations, so I did it before baking the cookies. Some turned out okay-looking while others had a bumpy look to them. They all tasted fine, but I think the texture of the filling is better when it is not baked.  I altered the recipe to recommend piping the filling on after baking the cookies.

    Our house of cookie monsters was divided on which cookies they liked best...the ones rolled in pecans or the ones with the pecans in the dough.

    Want more cookie ideas?
    Old Fashioned Chocolate Glazed Cookies

    Great Pumpkin Cookies


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    I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

    Food for the Soul ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16

    While we were visiting Arizona a couple of weeks ago, I saw this beautiful flowering plant and couldn't help but snap a picture and share it with this week's Food for the Soul.


    As we go through trials, and we most certainly will, our hearts need to stay focused on this truth. We need to be recharged, refueled and renewed daily by God's Word.

    Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away,
    yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.
    2 Corinthians 4:16

    Thanks so much for stopping by today! Your visits mean so very much to me! May your souls be encouraged this week as you seek Him wholeheartedly! 
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    Creative Ways Link Party #16 and Features

    Hi Friends! It's so good to see you here! Thanks for stopping by to check out the Creative Ways Link Party #16! I've missed connecting with you all...we just returned from a trip out to sunny Arizona where we visited with dear friends and spent some quality time with our family that lives there. We alway have grandiose plans of things we'll do when we get there, but in the end, we happily settle for extra time with our loved ones and good food from our favorite eating establishments.


    So, obviously with me being away, I have not done much in the way of posting...or cooking...or creating. I just enjoyed that time being slightly "unplugged" from the blog. However, I have thoroughly enjoyed clicking through the links you brought to last week's party. Without further ado, I bring you the featured posts:


    Clockwise from Top Left

    Hardware Cloth Vase by Anderson + Grant
    I love this industrial/farmhouse look that she created with this hardware cloth!
    Breakfast on a Stick by The Painted Apron
    Food is just better on a stick. What a great to-go breakfast for those with a sweet tooth!
    Karen brought us a delicious recipe, some sweet thoughts of her mom, and a special way to remember the good cooks in our lives. 
    Whipped Feta Dip by The Pink Recipe Box
    She had me at FETA! I can't wait to try this on a cracker or baguette!
    Grandma's Garden Book by GardenUp Green
    Carole shared a piece of history and a sweet connection to the past with a treasure from her grandma.
    No Knead Rustic Bread by My Sweet Mission
    I will have to give this hearty bread a try. It sounds like a delicious and relatively easy recipe.


    If you missed these wonderful posts, be sure to click through their links to check them out! So, let's get right to this week's party, shall we? What have you been working on? I can't wait to see!

    Link Party Guidelines
    • Please link up to 3 of your family-friendly DIY Projects, Crafts or Recipes...your Creative Ways
    • Please link to a specific post on your blog, not just your home page.
    • Please do not link up Etsy shops or giveaways
    • Please follow Posed Perfection by clicking on one of my pretty, colorful buttons on the sidebar, and let me know so I can follow you back.
    • I'd love for you to add the party button to your post, a visible link back on your post, or a link on a party page. We want your creative friends to join us too!
    • Be sure to visit at least 2 links and leave some comment love. 
    • By linking up to this party, your are giving authorization for your projects/recipes to be featured with a photo and a link back to your blog.
      Posed Perfection
      <a href="www.posedperfection.com" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1212.photobucket.com/albums/cc454/pianoprincessdesigns/creativewaysbutton_zps0fd67676.png~original" alt="Posed Perfection" width="250" height="177" /></a>

      I would love for you to start following me on BlogLovin' to ensure you get the latest posts. I can't wait to see all your Creative Ways!

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      Food for the Soul ~ Proverbs 11:25

      Hello, sweet friends! So glad to see you here today. I've been enjoying some time with family and friends in Arizona this week. Now that we're back from our trip and I look back on our visit, I am blown away by the love and generosity of the people in my life. The Lord knows exactly what we need and when we need it. 


      This particular picture was taken several years ago in St. Peters, Missouri when my husband was sent to the area for a period of time for work. It was a time in our lives when we had felt as though we had gone through the desert, metaphorically speaking. Although our family lived in a hotel for 6 months while my husband was in training, the Lord put extended family and new friends in our lives to refresh our souls.

      I am so grateful for those 6 months, as they reminded me of the Lord's goodness. We didn't need a spacious home with all the extras, for the Lord provided everything we needed...especially the oasis of fellowship. When we returned to Texas, my soul was refreshed and it allowed me to open myself up to God's plans and His blessings.

      Wishing you a week full of blessings! May your hearts be refreshed as you pour into others!
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      Creative Ways Link Party # 15 and Features

      It's one of my favorite days of the week again! It's time for another Creative Ways Link Party! The week just flew by again...no surprise there, right? Have you been squeezing out the last bit of summer before school starts back? Or are you already firmly in the trenches of a rigorous fall schedule?


      I had so much fun going through the links this week. You all really brought your "A Game", as usual. I am always in awe of your talents and gifts! Thanks for sharing them with us! Here were a few of my favorites:


      Clockwise from top left:
      Office Makeover- Storage by The Refined Relic
      You have to see the "before" of this Craiglist bookshelf! A stunning makeover!
      10 Hydrating Infused Water Recipes by Home. Made. Interest
      Who knew water could taste so good? Love the flavor combinations in this round-up!
      Carole not only has a green thumb, but she has a way with creating beautiful outdoor spaces too.
      Summer Garden Pasta by Simply Suzanne's
      A great way to use up summer's bounty of tomatoes!
      A repurposed library cart is the focal point in this beautiful small space.
      I love a good quick bread, and I adore the fact that this one is good for you too!

      So, let's get right to this week's party, shall we? What have you been working on? I can't wait to see!

      Link Party Guidelines
      • Please link up to 3 of your family-friendly DIY Projects, Crafts or Recipes...your Creative Ways
      • Please link to a specific post on your blog, not just your home page.
      • Please do not link up Etsy shops or giveaways
      • Please follow Posed Perfection by clicking on one of my pretty, colorful buttons on the sidebar, and let me know so I can follow you back.
      • I'd love for you to add the party button to your post, a visible link back on your post, or a link on a party page. We want your creative friends to join us too!
      • Be sure to visit at least 2 links and leave some comment love. 
      • By linking up to this party, your are giving authorization for your projects/recipes to be featured with a photo and a link back to your blog.
        Posed Perfection
        <a href="www.posedperfection.com" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1212.photobucket.com/albums/cc454/pianoprincessdesigns/creativewaysbutton_zps0fd67676.png~original" alt="Posed Perfection" width="250" height="177" /></a>

        I would love for you to start following me on BlogLovin' to ensure you get the latest posts. I can't wait to see all your Creative Ways!


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        Food for the Soul ~ Hebrews 1:3

        Have you ever looked at a cluster of Queen Anne's Lace flowers? Each "bloom" is made up of hundreds of tiny flowers all held together by a network of life-giving stems. In fact, each of the hundred or so blooms in a starburst pattern off the main stem produces more blooms, which produce more blooms and so on. Each little flower is a tiny representative of the larger bloom. The minuscule flowers reflect the larger flowers overall form. (I went looking for information about this beautiful flower and found it here.)

        This makes me think of the body of Christ. If we picture Christ as main flower in this scenario, we are the tiny flowers that together make up the body of Christ, the Church. Jesus is the embodiment of the "radiance of God's glory." If we are "in Christ", then we, too, should reflect the glory of God.

        Food for the Soul- Hebrews 1:3- Queen Anne's Lace

        What a powerful reminder of just who Jesus really is...."the exact representation of (God's) being"! Amazing! And, since that is the case, should we not, as the body of Christ, be good representatives too? Let's go be the hands and feet of Jesus this week! Wishing you a wonderful week, friends!
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        Creative Ways Link Party #14 and Features

        Welcome to the Creative Ways Link Party #14! I hope you've had a great week. Some of you may have already sent your kiddos back to school and I hope it's been a smooth transition. I'm still gathering up information and putting together a curriculum for my kids' school year. I have to say, I'm feeling the pressure this year of being their primary educator...something about them getting older and taking on bigger challenges! Anyway, if I've seemed a little absent from here, it's because I've been researching and racking my brain...and spending as much free time with my family as possible. All too soon we'll be hitting the books, starting up with soccer and baseball practices, and just living the wildly busy rhythm of life. 

        I had such a great time going through the links from last week's party. You all are truly amazing in your vision and execution of projects! The recipes are always top notch too. You make it very difficult to choose features, but choose I must. So, here were some of the posts that caught my eye...


        Clockwise from top left
        Portable Picnic for Two by The Painted Apron
        (I love the old fashioned bottle carrier she used for this sweet picnic!)
        (You have to see the before pictures of this bathroom renovation. Truly spectacular!)
        Tzatziki Chicken Salad by With A Blast
        (This fresh chicken salad sounds amazing! Love all the bright flavors going on!)
        Country Kitchen Island by Redo It Yourself Inspirations
        (I am always amazed by people's vision with projects. Who knew this Country Island was once a coffee table!)
        Strawberry and Cream Bars by Swanky Recipes
        (Fresh strawberries and sweet cream pair perfectly in this delicious dessert on a cookie base.)
        Triplet Tote- Sewing 101 by The DIY Dreamer
        (This adorable tote bag even looks easy enough for me to tackle! Love the fabrics Christine chose!)

        If you missed seeing any of these great posts last week, follow the links and go check them out. You will not be disappointed. 

        Link Party Guidelines
        • Please link up to 3 of your family-friendly DIY Projects, Crafts or Recipes...your Creative Ways
        • Please link to a specific post on your blog, not just your home page.
        • Please do not link up Etsy shops or giveaways
        • Please follow Posed Perfection by clicking on one of my pretty, colorful buttons on the sidebar, and let me know so I can follow you back.
        • I'd love for you to add the party button to your post, a visible link back on your post, or a link on a party page. We want your creative friends to join us too!
        • Be sure to visit at least 2 links and leave some comment love. 
        • By linking up to this party, your are giving authorization for your projects/recipes to be featured with a photo and a link back to your blog.
          Posed Perfection
          <a href="www.posedperfection.com" target="_blank"><img src="http://i1212.photobucket.com/albums/cc454/pianoprincessdesigns/creativewaysbutton_zps0fd67676.png~original" alt="Posed Perfection" width="250" height="177" /></a>

          I would love for you to start following me on BlogLovin' to ensure you get the latest posts. I can't wait to see all your Creative Ways!

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          Making Memories in the Backyard and a Giant DIY Tic Tac Toe Game

          Hi Friends! The carefree days of summer are starting to wind down, but that doesn't mean you can't still have some family fun. Spending time outdoors with your kiddos is an important part of creating memories that will last long after the latest video game loses it newness.


          Creating your own "water park" with slip-and-slides, blow-up pools and water trampoline are just some of the ways we've spent the afternoons in the past.


          As the sun starts to go down and things cool off a bit in the evenings, we've been known to have a raging game of Washers going on.


          This year, we brought back a classic game and super-sized it for backyard fun with this Giant DIY Tic Tac Toe Game.


          I'm actually sharing this fun project at Living Well Spending Less today as part of her Summer Fun with Kids series. I hope you'll stop by to check it out. You can get the supply list, the instructions and enter to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card. Now THAT'S some summer fun!

          What are you doing to create memories with your kids this summer?

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          I'm linking up at some of these great parties and

          Food for the Soul ~ Romans 12:9

          Hi Friends! Hope you have had a good weekend so far. We've been enjoying some beautiful weather here in North Texas...well, as long as you are in the shade ;-) Seriously though, the coolish breezes have been taking the edge off the oppressive heat that we so often must endure at this point in the summer. I'm sure things will change this next week and return to the "normal" temps of summer, but for now I will choose to cling to what is good.


          I love this simple message of Romans 12:9, "Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good." So often I get hung up on hating what is evil, that I forget to cling to what is good. While it can be applied to so many areas of my life, I see this pattern often in parenting our kids. We can focus so much on the negative behavior that we want to change that we neglect to cling to God's promises, and encourage our children in what is good and right. God is working in their hearts (and ours), sometimes it takes awhile for the behaviors to catch up. May your week be filled with beauty and goodness!
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          10 Family Dinners That Start with Ground Beef

          So, we've all done it. We've gone to the big box store and loaded up on all the necessities ~ paper products, frozen vegetables, canned goods, 18-packs of gum, contact solution, chicken breasts and a 6- lb package of ground beef. I almost forgot the big bag of caramel and cheese popcorn! Anyway, you get home, put everything away only to face the gigantic package of beef. If you have a large family or a big group coming over for dinner, you might set right to work cooking up recipes for tacos or making up some hamburger patties. But, what if it's just you and your small family of 4? What then? You need an action plan and a bunch of family-friendly beef recipes!
          10 Family Friendly Ground Beef Recipes

          I start off by separating out the package into 1-lb sections. You could eyeball it, but I usually pull out my little kitchen scale. Most of the time, I will put 4 pounds of beef in individual quart-size freezer baggies inside a larger freezer bag, and (you guessed it) put it in the freezer. Now I only have to pull out one pound at a time when I'm ready to add it to recipes.

          10 Family Friendly Ground Beef Recipes

          I will also cook up about 2 pounds of the meat with seasoning and chopped onions. One pound gets put into a recipe right away and the other cools until it can be packaged and put in the freezer for a quick meal. Now that it's all prepared, I am free to make whatever recipe I want from it. Spaghetti with meat sauce and hamburgers are great, but sometimes you need a little variety. Here are 10 Family Dinners That Start with Ground Beef.

          Souped Up Stroganoff

          Souped up Stroganoff is definitely a favorite around here. Golden Mushroom soup is the star of the show in this dish. My family loves this, even though none of them likes mushrooms ;-)

          PW's Comfort Meatballs

          You can never go wrong with a Pioneer Woman recipe! These PW Comfort Meatballs are requested all the time in my house. Tangy and delicious, they even make mashed potatoes taste better! (As if that were possible ;-))

          Vegetable Beef Soup

          When the temperature dips a little bit, it puts me in the mood for soup. Vegetable Beef Soup is a snap to put together and warms the tummy like nobody's business.

          Hamburger Potato Casserole

          This humble Hamburger Potato Casserole is anything but boring. It started as an experiment to recreate a childhood favorite (of the Hamburger Helper variety) and has firmly planted itself into one of my most requested recipes by my family and one of the most frequently viewed here on the blog.

          Saucy Meatballs

          Saucy Meatballs are great alternative for when you want something besides Spaghetti and Meatballs. Sometimes, I will make a couple of batches of meatballs to keep in the freezer to be able to pull together a quick meal like this one.

          Green Chile Pasta

          With just a few pantry items, this Green Chile Pasta will fill their bellies in style. I don't often mix "nationalities" when I'm cooking, but the Italian pasta mixed with Mexican spices works together wonderfully.

          Dinner in a Pumpkin

          With Fall around the corner, it's never to early to start thinking about fun Fall recipes. Dinner in a Pumpkin could become your Halloween tradition before trick-or-treating.

          Everyone's Favorite Sloppy Joes

          Everyone's Favorite Sloppy Joes are just that. They make an appearance at least once a month around here and are requested by my husband no less than once a week. Tangy and scrumptious, they are an easy way to feed a crowd, if you double the recipe.

          Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole

          I love the taste of stuffed peppers, but I'm pretty sure the pepper would be wasted if I attempted to serve them to my family. However, the veggies get devoured in this Stuffed Pepper Skillet Casserole. If you chop up the peppers fine enough, the kiddos might not even notice them. ;-)

          Walking Tacos...or Taco Salad in a Bag

          Last but not least, Walking Tacos...or Taco Salad in a Bag make for a great summertime meal. You just can't go wrong with the cheesy tortilla chips mixed in with the cool salad and taco meat. In fact, we had it just last night!

          So, there you have it! You should no longer stand in your kitchen staring at a 6 lb package of ground beef with a glazed-over look. You've got plan of attack and a pile of recipes! These meals are all family-approved and easy to make...many times using staples you'll find in your pantry. What's your favorite dish to make with ground beef?
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          I'm linking up at some of these great parties and