Adaynasmile

Just another day in paradise…


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A Healthy Twist on Holiday Favorites: Pumpkin Pie

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I LOVE pumpkin pie.

No, you don’t understand. I really love pumpkin pie.

Last month was my birthday and I knew I wanted a pumpkin pie instead of a traditional cake. I tried a few different low carb, low sugar recipes, but I didn’t like any of them. They just weren’t right. So I set out on an adventure to create my own.

I think this recipe is marvelous. I could eat it for every meal. Seriously. Its just that good.

And I feel good eating it.

Take a look at the nutrition facts in comparison to a popular brand of frozen pumpkin pie.

Mine:

Calories: 335

Fat: 30 grams

Carbs: 6 grams net

Protein: 10 grams

Theirs:

Calories: 350

Fat: 14 grams

Carbs: 43 net grams

Protein: 6 grams

43 net carbs! Its amazing that it went from 43 to just 6. That is a huge difference in the world of carb counters. It is possible to have a delicious dessert on that low carb diet!

You will see that the fat is much higher in mine. However, it is full of healthy fats. Butter and cream are excellent sources of healthy fat. And the crust is made up of almond meal, which is also filled with wonderful, healthy fats. So don’t let that scare you away.

Ingredients:

Crust:

2 cups Almond Meal

1/4 tsp salt

2 tbsp butter

1 egg

Dash of stevia powder or one packet of Tuvia

1 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Pie Filling:

3/4 cup Truvia or Xylitol (I usually use a combination of the two)

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

dash of nutmeg

1/2 tsp ginger

2 eggs

15 oz can of pumpkin (or two cups fresh pureed pumpkin)

8 oz heavy cream

Directions:

1. In a food processor combine the almond flour, salt, stevia, and pumpkin pie spice. Pulse a few times until combined.

2. Add softened butter and egg. Continue to pulse until it starts forming a ball.

3. Spread into a greased 9″ pie pan. Set aside.

4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

5. In a large bowl, or the food processor, combine sweetener and spices. Add in pumpkin, cream, and eggs. Beat until smooth.  Pour into prepared crust.

6. Place pie on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 15 minutes at 400 degrees. Reduce heat to 350 and continue to cook for another 40-50 minutes or until a toothpick in the center comes out clean.

7. Cut into 8 delicious slices, serve with fat free whipped cream (or beat your own), and enjoy!

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Let me know what you think! I hope that you give it a try and find it as wonderful as I do.

Blessings,

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*Note: Coconut Oil can be substituted for butter. It will change the nutrition count a bit, but is also chock full of many nutrients.

**Truvia baking mix is NOT recommended. Sugar is a main ingredient in the baking mix, making it not a low carb, low calorie, or healthy substitute.

***Xylitol is a delicious and easy to work with substitute for sugar, however, it is a laxative and can cause digestive issues for some people. It is also dangerous for pets.

****It is possible to make this crust without a food processor. It will not be quite as smooth, but you can still knead it by hand and get a similar crust.

I’m linking up to:

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Hope

I have always loved the word “hope.” Webster defines it as “to cherish a desire with anticipation.”

As a Christian, my hope has been put in God. In His Word. In His promises. In a future with Him, free from worry, sin, and the fears of this world.

Christmas is a time in which there is much rejoicing. A time when families get together to celebrate a variety of different things. A time of gathering, love, good will, and hope.

As Christians, at Christmas time, our hope is put into the promises of the baby Jesus. We remember that Jesus came to earth in such a humble manner. Being born in a stable, (Did your mom ever ask you if  you were born in a barn? Jesus could have said yes to that one!) under lowly circumstances, even though He was, and is, the great Son of God.

But the biggest reason we celebrate hope at Christmas is because we are “anticipating” the real miracle. The miracle of Jesus’ death and resurrection. It is because of that miracle that Jesus is important and not just another man. His birth was unusual. But his death was extraordinary!

Today, my heart is not doing a good job of rejoicing in this good news. It grieves over the tragedies of this world. My heart yearns to comfort those who are mourning during this time of joy. But there really is no way that I can do that.

I am also struggling as I am soon to deliver my third baby. How can I bring a baby into such a tragic, fallen world? How do I protect my children from the horrors that are prevalent in today’s society? The terrors that seem to keep growing?

My only comfort is my hope. My hope that God has better in mind for my children. Better in mind for the world. The He mourns with those who are hurting. That He grieves over the short lives the children lived. And that He holds each and every person in the palm of His hands.

I do not believe that He “allowed” this to happen. But we are in a fallen world. A world that NEEDS Him. We are blind to that. Being blind to that allows the enemy to have reign over us.

But He will conquer! He has promised to return again. He has promised to take us to a better place where there will be no hurt or pain, no illnesses or shootings. A place of perfection. A place He desired for us all along.

And so, in light of the tragedies our world has been faced with, I am still full of hope. Hope for the good that is to come. Hope that He will not let us down. Hope that God is ultimately in control and desires what is best for us.

Find hope, my friends. Find a reason to anticipate the future. And cling to it! Keep it close to your heart and never let it go.

From the words of Jesus, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” (John 14:27)

May you find that peace and hope of God, that is not of this world but of Him. Perfect in every way.

I leave you with a passage from 2 Corinthians 4 (emphasis added) that I think is very fitting. I pray that it will touch your heart today.

Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body. For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you.

It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.

Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all.So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Blessings!

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Snowflake Stockings

I apologize for not getting this tutorial done before Christmas. But I wanted to share with you how I made my family stockings if you want to make your family some for next year.

Here is one of the finished stockings.

I blocked out my little guy’s name but it is all there. It was pretty simple and can easily be duplicated.

Tools:

  • Snowflake pattern you like (or any other shape you want to use)
  • Stocking pattern (there are tons available online or you can trace an old stocking)
  • Felt for stocking, cuff, and snowflake
  • Embroidery thread (or if you prefer you can use puff paint)
  • Mark-B-Gone pen
  • All Purpose Glue (I like Aileen’s in the gold bottle)

Directions:

  1. Using your main color of felt, cut out two stocking pieces (front and back). Using a contrasting color cut out a cuff piece. If the pattern does not include a cuff piece simply create one by cutting a section off of the top of the stocking and using it as your cuff pattern. You will be layering the cuff over the top of the stocking, covering the top portion. Keep that in mind when you are designing your cuff.
  2. I find that cutting out my snowflake pattern is easiest with a small pair of very sharp scissors. Lay the snowflake that you are tracing onto the white felt. Use the Mark B Gone to trace around the snowflake. (See picture 4 as well.)
  3. Take a small rectangle of the felt you used for the cuff and fold it in half. Sew the unfolded side to the back stocking piece.
  4. Cut out the snowflake.
  5. Use a small amount of glue to attach the snowflake to the front stocking piece. You can either leave it glued on or you can use embroidery thread to stitch around the edge of the snowflake. Stitching will make it more secure and will also add a decorative touch but the glue will suffice if you do not want to do the hand sewing. I also use a bit of glue on the back on the knots from my stitches. This helps them to last longer.
  6. Write your child’s name on the cuff piece with the Mark B Gone. Use your embroidery thread to stitch the name. I use a basic straight stitch to do the name. If you know how to handstitch then you can do this! If you are afraid or don’t want to take the time to stitch the name, you can use puff paints.
  7. Now it is time to piece together your stocking. Sorry, I don’t really have pictures of this. Start by taking your (dry) cuff piece and your front stocking piece. I laid the cuff piece on the front the way I was going to want it when it gets sewed on. Then I flipped it over so that the front of the cuff is facing the back of the stocking. Clear as mud? The idea is that when you sew the top of the cuff to the stocking, and then flip it over, it will be the way you want it to be with the name in the correct position.
  8. Flip the cuff over to the front and do a stitch on each side of the cuff so that it will stay in place where you want it to be. Don’t worry about it being perfect, just keep it close to the edge. This is simply to tack the cuff into place so that it doesn’t shift when you sew the stocking together.
  9. You are going to do the same thing with the back pieces.
  10. Once the cuffs are sewed on, pin the stocking pieces together, right sides together. This means that as you sew you will see the stitching from your snowflake (if you stitched around it), and the hook that you made on the back piece. I used a 1/2″ seam allowance but use whatever your pattern calls for.
  11. Cut small triangles on the curves. This will help the stocking to turn nicely. (Again, sorry for the lack of pictures. I’ll try to take some and post later.) Here is a tutorial on how to clip corners and curves that I think is really helpful.
  12. Turn the stocking and admire your handiwork!

If you decide to make this project I would love to see your pictures! Link your pictures to my blog in the comment section.


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How were your holidays?

We enjoyed some great times together as a family. I wanted to share some of my favorite pictures.

In the beginning of the month there was a Christmas parade on base followed by a tree lighting at the chapel.

We had two trees in our house this year. One in living room where the little boys’ were able to touch and explore all the ornaments. The other one was in the back area of the living room and off-limits, except with close supervision.

Here are the ornaments that I made. I traced cookie cutters on a piece of cardstock to get my patterns. Then I hand stitched the details and the edging. I used stuffing to make them soft and squishy. I only got 2 finished but several others cut out to stitch up for next year.

Last year my grandparents got S a pillowcase to wrap his present with. I loved the idea and decided that it would be really cool to make pillowcases for T and my husband’s niece and nephews. I used this tutorial. It was easy to follow and resulted in some super cute pillowcases. Here’s a picture of them all stacked together.

And finally, I got two stockings done. Here is S’s stocking (with his name blocked out). I’m working on a tutorial so that you can make some for your little one’s for next year.

Hope your holidays were as good as ours!


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Merry Christmas!

Hi all!

I know I have been mia the last week or so. Been hard at work being one of Santa’s Elves. Been sewing pillowcases, making stockings, shopping, wrapping presents, making treats, and doing day-to-day life stuff. Its been a busy couple of weeks!

But I am very excited about tomorrow being Christmas Eve.

Since this year Christmas falls on a Sunday we will be attending church. That means that we won’t be home until early afternoon. Since I have no desire to come home after church and fix a nice dinner, we are going to have our big meal tomorrow.

So tomorrow we will be having a delicious turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, green bean casserole, salad, sweet potato casserole (with marshmallows, of course!), cranberries, crescent rolls, and coconut cream pie. Then on Sunday we will be having ham and leftovers. It’ll be a lot of work to prepare but I am looking forward to enjoying it and the time with my husband and kids.

But I’ll be back soon! I have not forgotten you.

I’ll share with you the stocking that I have been hard at work creating, and how you can duplicate them yourself. I know it’s too late for this year but it is never too early to get started on next year! I will also be sharing a review on a carrier pattern that I made in November. Plus, a few other things that I have up my sleeves and am eager to share with you.

So be sure to check back in a few days for a new post. Until then, enjoy your friends and your family and have a blessed holiday!

Merry Christmas!!