Sunday, December 20, 2015

Tis' the Season to be Jolly!

Two Things I am Grateful For:

1)  My boss for helping me solve an issue I was having.  Thank you.

2)  Light traffic on my way to and from work. 

From the Camera:
Lexi walking around the temple with the young women.

From the Craft Room & Other Things I Love:

Aren't these cards cute?  Super simple and very cute!  

From the Heart & Spirit:

The Last Sacrament Cup
By Catherine Arveseth
The author lives in Utah, USA.

It was just before the new year, and we were visiting a ward in St. George, Utah, with our five little children—a ward that had no Primary or youth program because it was composed mostly of retired couples. No 12-year-old deacons bumped elbows on the front row; it was the high priests who were preparing to bless and pass the sacrament.

Normally, the ward would have gently filled the padded seats of the chapel, but on this holiday weekend the overflow divider was pushed wide, and we, with a number of other families, were nestled onto metal folding chairs that stretched to the back of the cultural hall.

The meeting progressed as usual, and I watched as a dozen older gentlemen carried trays of bread, then water, through the bursting rows. They were making great effort to manage the unusually large crowd. Their faces were kind. Some had rounded shoulders and bent spines. They whispered directions to each other. One wore cowboy boots. One winked at a little girl in front of us.

My daughters and I took the last cups of water from our tray and handed it to my husband, Doug, who passed the empty tray to the brother standing at the end of our row.

The bishop stood at the pulpit to assess the situation. When he asked who had not received the water, a few pockets of people, including Doug, raised their hands. So the brethren returned to the sacrament table, offered a second prayer on the new water, and delivered it to the waiting members.

Our row was last to receive the water this time, and I noticed that Doug offered the couple next to him the two remaining cups. The tray was empty, and it appeared to me that Doug was the only one in the congregation who hadn’t had the water. I wondered what he would do. Would he let it go? not worry about it this week?

Assuming that everyone had now received the water, those who were passing the sacrament partook of the water themselves, using all the remaining cups. But the bishop asked one more time if anyone had not received the water, and Doug raised his hand. He was, as I suspected, the only one. He looked at me and we smiled, conscious of the craned necks and curious eyes.

The brethren returned to the table for a third prayer on the water. And suddenly, as I heard that phrase “to bless and sanctify this water to the souls of all those who drink of it” (D&C 20:79), a realization crept into my heart—an understanding so keen it pried me clear open and God’s Spirit swept in. It was a reverence I hadn’t felt in too long.

They were praying over one cup. For one person. One soul.

The sacrament mattered. Even for one. Just as the Atonement mattered. For one.

For everyone.

Hundreds of members waited for the “amen.” Dozens watched as the last cup was delivered to my husband, and he put it to his lips, and drank.

I had to look away, my eyes were so wet.

I looked up in time to see these sweet men in suits cover the trays with white linen. Just as Christ’s body, broken for us, was covered. Just as His Atonement covers us. All of us.

You and I are indisputably tied to Christ’s suffering. All our sins, grief, hurts, and losses are held in the drops of His blood. He said He has “graven [us] upon the palms of [His] hands” (Isaiah 49:16).

The emotion of watching Doug take the last sacrament cup changed me, changed my understanding of the Atonement.

Our Redeemer, the Mighty One of Israel, broke not just bread, but body and soul. For me. For you. As if we were the only ones who mattered.

sacrament water tray
Illustration by Douglas M. Fryer

From the Kitchen:

Almost No Bake Mini Chocolate Peanut Butter Pies

Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Serves: 12
  • Graham Cracker Toffee Crust
  • 5 whole graham crackers
  • 3 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons toffee bits (I use Heath Bits ‘O Brickle Toffee its)

  • Peanut Butter Pie Filling
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 6 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 1 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup toffee bits (I use Heath Bits ‘O Brickle Toffee its)
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

  • Chocolate Ganache
  • 4 ounces quality semisweet chocolate, chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  • Garnish
  • 1/4 cup chopped salted peanuts
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
  • mini chocolate chips (optional)
  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 12 count muffin tin with muffin/cupcake liners.
  2. Add Graham Cracker Crust ingredients to food processor and blend to a fine crumble. Divide Crust mixture between the 12 liners (about a heaping tablespoon each) and press into the bottom of the liners. Bake for 5-7 minutes or until lightly golden. Set aside.
  3. Add heavy cream to a large mixing bowl and beat with handheld electric mixer on high until firm peaks form. Set aside.
  4. To a separate mixing bowl (or remove heavy cream), using the same beaters, beat peanut butter and cream cheese until smooth. Add the confectioners' sugar, toffee bits, vanilla, cinnamon and salt and beat until smooth (it will be thick). Gently fold the whipped heavy cream into the peanut butter-cream cheese mixture with a spatula until completely blended.
  5. Spoon Peanut Butter Pie Filling into muffin tins (they will fill to the top). Freeze for at least one hour.
  6. Meanwhile, prepare Chocolate Ganache by adding chocolate and heavy cream to a medium microwave-safe bow. Microwave for one minute stir, then microwave at 30-second intervals, stirring in between, until the chocolate is melted. Stir chocolate and heavy cream until smooth. Let cool to barely warm, stirring occasionally (it will thicken as it cools.). Spoon the Chocolate Ganache over the peanut butter cups and spread with the back of the spoon (its okay if some spreads over the edges).
  7. To garnish, melt peanut butter and drizzle over mini pies (I add my peanut butter to a ziploc bag and snip the corner), sprinkle with salted peanuts and mini chocolate chips. Freeze for at least 4 hours up to 7 days.
  8. When ready to serve, serve IMMEDIATELY after removing from the freezer as the mini pies soften quickly. You can either serve with the or without the cupcake liners.

From the Schmidt's:

Today has been a long day!  In fact, I came right home from work and took a little nap.  It took me forever to fall asleep last night and I think I made up for it this evening.  Hopefully I won't have trouble falling asleep tonight.

We walked in to new desks and offices at work this morning.  Our old desks were replaced with the kind of desks that allow you to stand or sit, which is awesome.  Not to mention that everything is brand new too.  Everyone is loving it!  

We received a gift in the mail today from Kevin's Aunts.  Remember?  These are the Aunts that I mentioned about a week or so back....the one was in the hospital and ended up receiving 8 units of blood for a very large ulcer she has.  Thankfully she is home and on the mend now.  They always send something from the Popcorn Factory and we all love that!  Thank you Yvonne and Patsy!

Only 4 more days until we get to talk to and see Curtis!!!  I can't wait!  Danielle is coming over and he will be calling Christmas Day.  It will be good to see and hear from him.  

I have one more gift to wrap and one more small thing to go with a gift for one of my kids and I will even be done with the wrapping too.  I have to say, this is very weird.  I usually stay up late on Christmas Eve wrapping gifts and then end up falling asleep around 1 a.m. only to be woke up around 4 or 5 a.m.  I usually end up taking a little nap around 7a.m. every Christmas because of this.  Looks like I won't need a nap this year!  What will that be like??  LOL!

Kevin was suppose to get to a doctor's appointment this afternoon, but he cancelled because he wasn't feeling well.  He said he was feeling sick.  I hope he isn't coming down with something or ends up back at the hospital.  That would not be good.  Not this time of year at least. 

I hope you are finished with your shopping and everything is wrapped and ready to go so you can relax and enjoy this week.  Well, I should go.  I'm typing this from my phone so I'm going to have to cut this short.  Take care my friends and we will talk again soon.

From the Missionary:

Nothing from our Missionary today.  More in a few days!

Quote of the Day:

 photo ae61ba47-7d78-4151-a87a-fbdf53851081_zps246d8efb.png
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