Monday, April 25, 2011

The scientific death of Jesus

At the age of 33, Jesus was condemned to the death penalty.  At the time crucifixion was the "worst" death. Only the worst criminals condemned to be crucified. Yet it was even more dreadful for Jesus, for unlike other criminals condemned to death by crucifixion, Jesus was nailed to the cross by His hands and feet, rather than tied... Each nail was 6 to 8 inches long.  The nails were driven into His wrist. Not into His palms as is commonly
portrayed. There's a tendon in the wrist that extends to the shoulder.  The Roman guards knew that when the nails were being hammered into the wrist, that tendon would tear and break, forcing Jesus to use His back muscles to
support himself, so that He could breathe.  Both of His feet were nailed together. Thus He was forced to support
Himself on the single nail that impaled His feet to the cross. Jesus could not support himself with His legs for long because of the pain, so He was forced to alternate between arching His back and using his legs just to continue
to breath. Imagine the struggle, the pain, the suffering, the courage.

Jesus endured this reality for over 3 hours. Yes, over 3 hours! Can you imagine this kind of suffering? A few minutes before He died, Jesus stopped bleeding. He was simply pouring water from his wounds.

From common images we see wounds to His hands and feet and even the spear wound to His side... But do we remember the many wounds made to his body. A hammer driving large nails through the wrists, the feet overlapped and a nail hammered through the arches, then a Roman guard piercing His side with a spear. And...before the nails and the spear, Jesus was whipped and  beaten. The whipping was so severe that it tore the flesh from His body. The beating so horrific that His face was torn and his beard ripped from His face. The crown of thorns (two to three inch thorns) cut deeply into His scalp.

Most men would not have survived this torture. He had no more blood to bleed out, only water poured from His wounds. The human adult body contains about 35 liters (just less than a gallon) of blood.  Jesus poured all 3.5 liters of his blood; He had three nails hammered into His members; a crown of thorns on His head and, beyond that, a Roman soldier who stabbed a spear into His Chest.

All these without mentioning the humiliation He passed after carrying His own cross for almost 2 kilometers, while the crowd spat in his face and threw stones (the cross beam was almost 30 kg of weight, to which His hands were nailed).
Jesus had to endure this experience, so that you may have free access to God. So that your sins can be "washed" away. All of them, with no exception! Don't ignore this.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Scentsy lends it's support to Autism Speaks

In order to highlight the growing need for concern and awareness about autism, the Autism Society has been celebrating National Autism Awareness Month since the 1970s. The United States recognizes April as a special opportunity for everyone to educate the public about autism and issues within the autism community.(
I am not personally affected by anyone with autism in my family, nor do any of my close friends have an autistic child.  Lately though I have been meeting more people that are affected by autism and I'm learning more autism itself.  Autism affects 1 in 110 children, 1 in 70 boys.  I had no idea it was more common in boys than girls. 

I am an independent consultant for Scetnsy &something that I think is pretty great about our company, we support charitble causes!  Scentsy has two catalogs each year and in each of those catalogs we have a charitable warmer for sale where 100% of the net proceeds go to that charity.  The Spring/Summer 2011 catalog is supporting Autism Speaks.

Piece by Piece is the full size Scentsy Warmer that you can purchase to help support Autism.

This will get ya on your feet & dancing!

AH-MAZE-ING!  A friend had this posted on their facebook wall last week & I just fell in love with the song!  Bought it on itunes this morning!  In the search box, type in Rise Up (Dance Your Shoes Off 2011) and you should find it.

"The song is entitled "Rise Up" and was commissioned by Second Baptist Church for this event. It is produced by Joshua Moore. The singer is Lauren James Camey, a member of their church.

Like a Christmas Present!

OOOH, the excitement of it!  Who's going to have sent me emails, who's posted or left messages on Facebook...I get a rush just waiting for my email to open! 

I realized that this morning as I was waiting for my work email account to pop up!  It felt like I had a present in front of me waiting to be opened!  How silly is that!?  I wondered who'd sent me messages since I left the office yesterday afternoon! 

I have three email accounts now!  Our home email, my work email and I've set up a gmail account primarily for my Scentsy business.  It's the little things that sometimes bring so much happiness & I guess that's a good thing!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Boston Cream Cupcakes

I am so going to have to make these! 

This miniature version of the classic custard pie leaves nothing out, with rich vanilla pudding, buttermilk and a semisweet chocolate glaze.
Active Time: 30 minutesTotal Time: 1 hour 30 minutesRecipe Ingredients
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp each baking powder and salt
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/4 cups sugar
3 large eggs
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup buttermilk

1 package (3 oz) cook & serve vanilla pudding
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate Glaze
8 oz semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup each sugar and water
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, softened

Recipe Preparation

1. Cupcakes: Heat oven to 350ºF. Line 18 muffin cups with paper liners.

2. In a bowl, whisk flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt until blended.

3. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with electric mixer until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, until well blended. Beat in vanilla extract.

4. With mixer on low speed, alternately beat in flour mixture and buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture, until just blended.

5. Spoon about 1/4 cup batter into each muffin cup. Bake 18 to 20 minutes until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pan to wire rack to cool completely.

6. Filling: Prepare pudding as package directs, using 1 1/4 cups milk. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla. Scrape into a bowl; cover surface directly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold.

7. Glaze: Place chocolate, sugar and water in a small saucepan over low heat. Cook, stirring, until melted and smooth, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in butter until it melts and mixture is smooth. Let cool.

8. To assemble: Slice off top of cupcakes to come to top of paper liners. Spread cut surface with about 1 Tbsp filling. Top with cupcake top. Spoon about 1 Tbsp glaze onto top center of each, easing it over top

100 ways to keep little kids happy

Pretend-Play Games
1. Celebrate a new holiday. Announce that it's Polka-Dot Day or Purple Day.
2. Throw a doll's birthday party. Wrap up a few "gifts," decorate with balloons and streamers, and enjoy a mock -- or real -- cake.
3. Dress for the weather. Lay out items for different weather conditions, describe a certain day, and ask your child to pick an outfit for it.
4. Open a petting zoo. Place stuffed animals around the room, pet each one, and talk about what they like to eat.
5. Camp out in your living room. Climb into a tent and sleeping bags. Turn on a flashlight, and pretend to eat s'mores.
6. Form a family band. Have everyone grab an instrument and jam to a CD.
7. Imitate animals. Practice hopping like a frog, squirming like a worm, waddling like a duck, and stretching like a cat.
8. Play restaurant. In the real kitchen or a pretend one, alternate between being the customer and the server or chef.
9. Offer horsy rides. Let her bounce on your back while you "neigh" and chew hay.
10. Ride the laundry-bin "school bus." She's the passenger, and you're the driver. Make stops to pick up other kids, and wave bye-bye to the mommies at each stop.
Take-Alongs That Make Waiting Fun
11. Brain Quest. This "flip deck" of age-appropriate questions and answers for children as young as 2 builds smarts and keeps kids busy.
12. A dry-erase pen for dressing rooms. "My daughter decorates the mirror while I try things on," says Stephanie Simon, of Charlotte, North Carolina. "The ink wipes off easily with a tissue."
13. Mini Etch A Sketch. Ask your child to draw what he sees.
14. Bubbles. Blow them while she's in a shopping cart or waiting to see the doctor.
15. Long-lasting snacks. Consider mini bagels, breadsticks, or graham crackers.
16. Pipe cleaners. They can take the shape of a ring, a flower, or a headband.
17. Crayons and a coloring book. Or try Crayola Color Wonder markers.
18. Finger puppets. Act out a story while you're stuck in a long line.
19. A plastic magnifying glass. She'll love seeing objects and people close-up.
20. A little toy train. Introduce a special choo-choo that only appears when you're outside of the house. Create your own track: Tell your child that it's along his arm, up a chair, or over a table -- and he'll keep the train rolling.
Easy Art Project
21. Finger-paint with pudding. Place a dollop on a laminated place mat or a cookie sheet and have your child create sweet abstract art. (You can dye vanilla pudding with food coloring.)
22. Make jewelry. String painted Cheerios or hollow pasta shapes onto yarn and voila, a necklace or a bracelet.
23. Create fingerprint critters. Using washable paint, make thumbprints on paper or a flowerpot. Once the paint dries, use a fabric marker to draw on legs, a face, and antennae. For more ideas, check out Ed Emberley's Complete FunPrint Drawing Book.
24. Go splat. Channel your child's inner Jackson Pollock: Drag an old sheet outside and let him use a paintbrush to splatter it with waterproof paint.
25. Make a collage. Give him paper and a glue stick. Go nuts with decorations, such as torn pieces of tissue or construction paper, cotton balls, feathers, images from magazines, and photos.
26. Adopt a pet rock. Adorn stones from a nature walk with paint, glitter glue, and stick-on eyes.
27. Try Dot Art markers. They're super easy for toddlers to hold.
28. Design a T-shirt. Paint your child's foot or hand with fabric paint and imprint a T-shirt for her or to give as a gift. (To prevent color from bleeding to the other side of the shirt, place cardboard inside.)
29. Knead some goop. Mix a box of cornstarch with water to a consistency your child likes, then add food coloring.
30. Crown your prince or princess. Decorate a strip of construction paper or cardboard with markers, glitter, and stickers. Then staple or tape the two ends to size.
Games to Play with a Ball
41. Knock it across the room with a kitchen utensil. Grab a spoon or a strainer with a handle.
42. Roll with it. Facing your child with legs spread apart, roll a ball to each other, alternating between using your left hand and right hand.
43. Bounce it into a hula hoop. Hold the hoop and have her try to toss the ball so it lands in the center. Move back to make the game more challenging.
44. Design spin art. Dip a small ball, such as a golf ball, into nontoxic washable paint, then put it in a salad spinner (or a plastic container) along with a few coffee filters. Put the cover on and spin! (You can use your salad spinner again after you put it in the dishwasher.)
45. Go bowling. Knock over some empty water bottles or soda cans.
46. Size them up. Give your child an assortment of balls -- tennis, golf, Ping-Pong -- and an empty muffin tin. She'll have fun putting a ball in each compartment, dumping them out, and starting all over again.
47. Play air ball. Take turns hitting a beach ball up toward the ceiling, trying not to let it hit the ground.
48. Sing a silly ball song. Have him run around the room holding a ball, while belting out "The Ball on the Bus Goes Round and Round."
49. Toss it up a slide. She'll love watching it roll down.
50. Pass it through a "human" tunnel. Both parents and the child stand in a row, one behind the other, with legs spread wide. The first person bends over and tries to get the ball through the three sets of legs.
Rainy Day Ideas
51. Create a sunny scene. "My kids draw on the windows with washable window markers," says Stacey Marshall, of Charlotte, North Carolina.
52. Splash in a couple of puddles. If the rain is light, you can look for worms along the way.
53. Pop in a yoga tape. Have her follow your poses.
54. Measure the place. "My 2-year-old daughter, Meredith, loves to play with a plastic tape measure," says Heather Gillespie, of West Harrison, New York. "We see how big all our furniture is."
55. Bake cookies with care. Give her a lesson in altruism by baking cookies for an elderly neighbor or to send to the troops in Iraq. Let her sneak a couple.
56. Plant seeds. Try lima beans, marigolds, and zinnias in a variety of mini pots, clear plastic cups, or an egg carton.
57. Play tag. Make it more fun with Playskool's Tag Tails ($15). Each player wears a detachable animal tail, which you try to pull off.
58. Create an obstacle course. Jump on pillows, crawl under chairs, and burrow through a blanket-covered tunnel.
59. Hunt for under-the-sea treasure. Run a bubble bath, then have your child sit inside or outside the tub and feel around for objects you've "buried."
60. Practice math. "Change the words of 'If You're Happy and You Know It' to 'If You're Happy and You Know It ... clap one time or jump three times and hop two times,'" says Jackie Silberg, author of 500 Five-Minute Games. Keep changing the activity and the number of repetitions.
Ways to Make Every Car Ride Rock
61. Take along a cookie sheet and magnetic letters and numbers. You can count and sing the ABCs as she arranges them in proper order, says Trish Kuffner, author of The Toddler's Busy Book.
62. Entertain her with a dancing bear. "When I'm in the passenger seat, I hold a stuffed animal on my head and have it perform," says Lisa Depew, of Ashburn, Virginia.
63. Pack a Travel Go 'N Doodle. No worries about ink stains on the seats with this version of the Aquadoodle mat.
64. Burn a favorite-songs CD. Make sure you like a few of them!
65. Try the shopping game. Name a store your child knows well (supermarket or toy store), then on the word "Go" see how many things your child can name in that store.
66. Bring a storybook on CD. These sets signal when it's time to turn the page in the corresponding book, so nonreaders can follow along too.
67. Take pictures of the trip. With a child-friendly digital camera, such as Fisher-Price's Kid-Tough Digital Camera, he can snap (deletable) pictures through the window and view his shots as often as he'd like.
68. Play "Who Am I?" Offer clues about an animal or a community helper, and ask your child to solve the riddle, says Kuffner.
69. Pretend with a doctor's kit. Ask her to examine a couple of her dolls or stuffed animals.
70. Let him steer like you. A toy with a steering wheel can help your child feel in control. Try Tiny Love's Wonder Wheel.
Really Fun 5-Minute Activities
91. Let your child scrub, scrub, scrub. "I fill the sink or a bucket with soapy water and give my kids plastic dishes or their dolls to clean," says Jodie Fratantuno, of Los Angeles.
92. Hand him an old cell phone. Name a relative or a friend to call.
93. Have her talk into a big plastic party cup. She'll be fascinated by the echo.
94. Pound out some energy. Give your child some golf tees and a toy hammer, and have him bang the tees into Styrofoam.
95. Dance on bubble wrap. Tape a piece to the floor and go wild.
96. Wipe down the kitchen. "My 2-year-old loves it when I give her a damp sponge to go over the counter and cabinets like Mommy does," says Depew.
97. Mesmerize him with a calculator. Kids especially love ones with big buttons.
98. Lay out a foam place mat and foam stickers. "My 19-month-old sits for a long time sticking on each decoration and then pulling it off," says Jane Martin, of Overland Park, Kansas.
99. Present her with a photo album with plastic pages. She'll like seeing memories of her birthday party or pictures of her cousins.
100. Enjoy teatime outside. "My 3-year-old pours water back and forth between her plastic teapot and teacups," says Elli Goyette, of Newport News, Virginia.