Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Kids Gift Ideas on Sale at Family Christian & a Giveaway #FCBlogger

This is a sponsored post for Family Christian. All opinions are honest and are my own.
I've been shopping Family Christian a lot this year, stocking up on fun Christmas gifts for Jamie and the kids. I'm really excited to give them quality gifts that will encourage all of us to live more Biblically-minded. Read on to find out about a great sale, a giveaway, and two of my favorite gifts for kids!

Now through December 24th, Beauty and the Beet is on sale at Family Christian for only $9.99! This, the newest Veggie Tales winter show, is a fun play on a favorite classic and a great story about unconditional love. 

About the movie: In Beauty and the Beet, Mirabelle and her traveling family band, the Veggie Tones, are determined to make their next gig at Vegetable Square Garden. On their journey, a fierce winter snowstorm hits, and the family gets stuck at a run-down resort! Mr. Beet, the grumpy manager makes them sing - and clean - for their supper. Why is Mr Beet such a beast? And can Mirabelle’s kindness change him? Find out in this hilarious and heartwarming VeggieTales story of unconditional love.

I was a teenager when Veggie Tales first came out and I've loved them ever since. From the silly songs to the Bible stories done right, (read: no religious overkill) it's hard not to giggle whenever they're on. I'm super excited to share this newest DVD with my kids this Christmas. 

The second gift I'm excited about gifting is this book from the son of the original Berenstain Bears creators. Mike Berenstain brings us the first Christian-themed Berenstain Bears book that I've ever seen, God Loves You! Now, I'll just be honest with you all. I don't usually let my kids spend a whole lot of time watching the Berenstains. The old books and cartoons sometimes featured themes we're not into---like Halloween or cruddy attitudes---and there always seemed to be this undercurrent of feminism going on that bugged me.

I'm really over-the-top excited to see a Christian-themed one come out from this brand. The back of the book says, Living Lights Berenstain Bear books help children learn how God wants them to live every day. I'm all for that! The whole salvation message is clearly given in a way that makes it easy for young kids to relate to and understand. I can't wait to get the rest in the series---this is definitely something I want to support!

I'm giving away a $25 gift certificate to Family Christian. You can use this either online or in store. Check out the Rafflecopter widget below and be sure to share the giveaway with your friends!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Pink Saturday: Finding Peace In the Busy Times {and PINK Christmas!}

Happy Pink Saturday!

It's been months since I've participated in Beverly's Pink Saturday and I'm missing all my Pink Ladies! As I announced earlier this year, my Mom, Christy, has come on board as a Creative Contributor here at Hope In Every Season, and today she makes her debut as official co-authoress! She's offering us some words of wisdom about finding peace. Thanks, Mom!

Peacefully Pushing Sixty
Are you peaceful? You have heard people say, other people can not make you happy. Only you can make yourself happy. The older I get the more I realize how true this is.

You can have a perfect husband, perfect kids, perfect home, perfect income, etc. and still spend your time wishing instead of enjoying.

Let's compare it to making a grocery list two weeks before payday. Every time you think of something you want in your kitchen, you write it on the list. By the time payday arrives, your list is so long that it would cost way more than your budget allows, not to mention you would not have the room to stock everything. On top of that, it would all spoil before you could use it. This worthless list leaves you wanting and anxious. If you wait until a couple of days before shopping time and make a list of what you need or would like, within reason, you can give yourself the freedom to be satisfied. Don't spend all month wishing and wanting. Enjoy and use the things you have. 

Another saying that is popular with some is, slow down and smell the roses. Try it! It is ok to stop and read a book, work a jigsaw puzzle, or listen to the wind blow. Rest your soul and shorten your want list for a happier, more peaceful life!

I've been slowly decorating our house for Christmas. I'm finding that my collection of PINK Christmas ornaments is quite larger than I'd originally thought! Pink and silver may be taking the place of red and green as traditional Christmas colors very soon! Fine with me, though. Who can get enough pink?

Does anyone know anything about these bristly sparkly things? I found a whole box of them, along with some clear plastic stars and things, at a yard sale a couple years ago. The box looks 50s-ish. 

 These are the two pink Christmas trees I made this year.

Make sure you stop by Beverly's Pink Saturday to see what everyone's up to this week! Also, make sure to link up with the Homemaking Party and enter to win a $25 gift certificate to Family Christian Bookstore!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Oriental Pork Loin Roast for an Elegant Asian-Inspired Holiday Dinner #TaiPeiGoodFortune #ad #cbias

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TaiPeiGoodFortune #CollectiveBias
Our family loves to try out foods from other cultures so I'm always looking for ways to make our meals more authentic. One of our favorites is this Asian-inspired Oriental Pork Loin Roast with seasoned rice. Tonight I served Tai Pei Egg Rolls and Spring Rolls with it and they were totally a hit!

New foods can be hit and miss with our family, but since there's so many of us, there's always someone to finish up what the others won't eat. Tonight everyone loved the egg and spring rolls and our four year old, Liam, even declared we should add these to the Thanksgiving menu. Not sure where that came from, but hey--why not?

I think of these Tai Pei rolls like a little black dress. They can be dressed up or down---depending on the event. Combining authentic Asian-style flavors and a fun takeout-style experience, they're easy to prepare and serve as a side dish to a fancy meal or as a munchie dinner while you're watching a favorite movie. 

Avalon and I found these at Walmart in the freezer aisle marked "Convenience Foods". They come in several varieties, including Pork, Chicken, Shrimp, and Vegetable. We bought the Mini Vegetable Spring Rolls and the full size Vegetable Egg Rolls.

I was impressed with the large size and quantity of pieces in each box. One box of each was more than enough for our family of 11. Some of the little kids split theirs in half to share so there was plenty to go around. We all loved the taste of the crispy wrappers, especially on the egg rolls. The vegetables were flavorful and each roll was packed full of filling. No skimping with these!

Each box included several packets of this sweet and sour dipping sauce. I set the sauce packets on top of my stove in a pot of water to thaw while the rolls were cooking. When the rolls came out, I let them cool on the counter a bit while I opened the packets and warmed up the sauce in a sauce pan.

I served the egg and spring rolls with my favorite Oriental Pork Loin Roast and some seasoned rice. This is a simple but elegant idea for a holiday dinner party. The sauce can be spooned over the top of the rolls on the plate for a more formal presentation.

I've been making this Oriental Pork Loin Roast for several years and it's always been a family favorite. I hope you'll enjoy my recipe. Let me know if you try it out and how you like it paired with the egg and spring rolls.

Oriental Pork Loin Roast

2 lb. tender pork loin or shoulder roast
1/2 c. soy sauce
1/4 c. honey
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix soy sauce, honey, garlic, and salt together and marinate pork 24 hours, turning every 6-8 hours. Remove pork from marinade and bake at 400º for 30 minutes.  Turn heat down to 300º and bake until internal temperature reaches 170º. Let pork sit on top of stove or counter about 15 min.  This will help the juices to settle so the meat stays more moist.

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Tai Pei Website