Friday, January 22, 2016

recipe: crockpot sausage and cheese tortellini

I'm becoming a fan of crockpot recipes. I've made potato soup and have now tried a sausage tortellini soup! And oh, they're both pretty good! I like being able to put everything into the crockpot and then leave it alone. The only difference is that the tortellini I used wasn't frozen so it took about two and a half hours for it to fully cook. I also didn't realize I needed specific diced tomatoes so I had to season them myself. I just poured them into a bowl and added some Italian seasoning and a little garlic powder. This is definitely a recipe I'll be making again! You can click here for the full recipe.

  • 1 lb. Italian Sausage
  • 20 oz. Frozen Three-Cheese Tortellini
  • 32 oz. Low Sodium Chicken Broth
  • 2 Cans Diced Tomatoes
  • 8 oz. Cream Cheese
  • Grated Parmesan Cheese for topping
Putting this together is super easy! Brown your Italian sausage and put in the bottom of the crockpot. Then add the tortellini. Next add the tomatoes. Pour in the chicken broth. Last, add the cream cheese, cutting it into small pieces. Stir all the ingredients, making sure the tortellini is covered with liquid. If your tortellini isn't frozen, cook on low for about two and a half hours. Stir every hour, letting the soup cook uncovered the last thirty minutes. If the tortellini is frozen, refer to the original recipe.

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Monday, January 11, 2016

book review: "philippians" by sue edwards

Paul's brief letter to Philippi highlights what strengthens authentic connections - skills like trust, humility, appropriate self-sacrifice, and generosity. It also sheds light on how to overcome toxic connection-killers like envy, comparison, and a critical spirit. 

Join Sue Edwards on this inductive study of Philippians, where you will discover how to find and maintain beloved, organic, healthy community.

This is a great book study, allowing you to take a deeper look at Philippians. It's designed to be completed with a group but I think I would like to take it slower and work through it on my own. There are eight chapters in the book. The first chapter has you reading in Acts, giving you a little background on Paul and how he came to meet those in Philippi. And I think the first chapter might be my favorite. I highlighted things in the sidebars in the Digging Deeper sections included in the book. This chapter has more open-ended/thinking questions than it seems the other chapters do. More of relating what's going on to things in your own life. And maybe that's why this is for a group study - the personal connections in the first chapter would allow those in the group to get to know each other as they begin this study. In one of the Digging Deeper sections, the words really stuck with me. The subtitle for this book study is called, Discovering Joy Through Relationship. This book talks about the importance of relationship and the benefits of it. "This is a call to wake up to the fact that we can never realize the likeness of Christ by ourselves alone; we will never transform the world as individuals; we will never discover fullness of life in Christ if we stay solo. We are distinct as people of God because we were made to live in dependence on the head and interdependently with the diverse parts of the body...Community that is distinctively Christian will host the presence of God in the midst of it! It is God himself who makes community possible." I feel like this quote sums up why we need community in the church so much! I like that this book study can be used in different ways. In a group or not in a group. You can simply go through the questions in each chapter and then move on or take the time to read the Digging Deeper sections in the sidebars to get even more out of it. A great book study!

I received a copy of this book from Kregel Publications for my honest review.

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Friday, January 1, 2016

hello 2016

My 2015 was a really good year. It really was! So many things happened - a third trip to Guatemala, beginning my third year teaching, paying off my student loan, working with middle school girls at my church and a pretty great birthday! 2016 has barely gotten off the ground but I know it's going to be even better! Happy New Year!

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