Friday, August 29, 2008

The best cookie ever

Every once in awhile I get the urge to be Martha Stewart and get excited about finding the best ever of something...and let me tell you, I think I've found one of them. I've been wanting to find a really good chocolate chipy-m&m cookie recipe...because what mom doesn't want to be the one with the best cookies! Her children will rave..."my mom makes the best cookies ever" and"my mom makes better cookies than your mom does"...and the compliments go on and on. The recipe will be passed down from generation to generation and will be requested at family gatherings and praised by co-workers and friends. Ahhh. The dream. But really. I love new recipes, and because I'm the sharing type...and not the recipe hoarding I-want-all-the glory-to- myself type, I thought I'd share this one!

Now, I did find this recipe on the internet, but I altered it slightly. However, I must give credit where credit is due. You can find the original at

We shall call this....

"The Best Cholcoate Chip Chunk M&M Cookies Ever" (great name, right?!)


8 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1 large egg
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 bag of m&ms (I used the ones especially for baking)
1/2 bag of Nestle Tollhouse chocolate chunks


1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the butter, brown sugar, sugar, vanilla and salt--beat until fluffy!

2. Beat in the egg and baking soda

3. Stir in the flour, m&ms and chocolate

4. Transfer to a bowl, cover and refrigerate until firm, about 4 hours or overnight (I think this may be the key step making these cookies so absolutely don't try and bake right away!)

4.5 Preheat oven to 350*

5. Using 2-3 tablespoons of dough for each cookie, shape the dough into balls and place on the lightly greased cookie sheet

6. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until the cookies spring back when very lightly touched.

7. Cool on the cookie sheets for two minutes, transfer to paper towels to cool for about two minutes, then transfer to racks (I think this step is a bit extravagant. I put mine on racks about two minutes out of the oven and they seemed fine)

Ok...enjoy! Let me know if any of you try this and tell me what you think!
I'm also challenging anyone who reads this to post/e-mail out one of your best ever recipes!

Happy Labor Day Weekend everyone! You can be sure that these cookies will be part of our celebration of a long weekend! :-)

Edited to Add: This recipe definitely makes less than the traditional cookie recipe...I kind of like it because if we are just making it for ourselves we don't have dozens of cookies staring us in the face, but just be advised that you may need to double this one up if you are looking for more than 24 cookies.... :-)

Check this out!

(I'm a proud soccer coaches wife!)

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Soccer and football (Josh)

I thought I should write a post in our family blog, so here goes. Soccer is well underway, as is school. School is going well, but I'm glad for Labor Day to be coming up. I got my projector for my SMART Board, and I should be getting my SMART Board soon. I have been doing a lot of ISTEP prep with my students, and I am a little surprised at how poorly they do with the basics of grammar and math (subjects and predicates, integers). Guess that's why I get paid the big bucks to help them. HA!

Soccer is going great so far. We have the best start in school history at 3-0 right now. We beat the #20 team in the state last Thursday 2-0. We played just awful last night, but somehow managed to still win 3-1. Our schedule is about to get wicked hard as literally half of our conference is ranked in the top 15 and we have a tourney with another top 5 team. We can hang with any team we play, it just depends on which of my teams show up. I am trying to get them to understand that games are not won on game days, but in practice and that is where they have to put the work in. I think after last night they see it. Hopefully we can have a very successful season. I have a small break as we only have one game this week. From here on out its games every Tuesday and Thursday until Sectionals. I may be able to sleep and see my family around the middle of October.

Last Saturday I traveled up to Grace for a fantasy football draft. Nine years ago a group of us started a league, and we have had the same core guys since then. I think the core of 7 of us have been in since the beginning, and it is always a lot of fun. We have never done a live draft before due to location issues, but since one of my best friends Pete moved back to the sacred Midwest, we made it happen. We had a blast! We had a nice set up with an announcer and tons of food. We even had draft cards to give to the announcer. Yeah, we may be dorks, but we don't care. I hadn't seen some of these guys since graduation, so it was good to reconnect with all of them. We hope to make this live draft an annual event.

Here are some pictures from our draft.

Our trophy

Pete chilling as Dave and I research our next picks
Notice the Mt. Dews...yes, we put away many of those

Joel and Hoover

The Grace College Fantasy Football Leauge

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Changes...and Goodbye to Xanga :-)

I've been thinking a lot about changes today. Changes that need to be made in my own life and changes I've noticed that are happening all around me. I suppose I'm powerless to stop how fast life quickly our comfortable lives can be changed in a life doesn't really ask me if I want something new or not. Change is inevitable; and I must learn how navigate them and then continue to live well! (I'm trying!) :-)

The beginning of a new school year will always mark a time in my life that signals something new is coming. It doesn't matter that I'm not a student anymore. Its the feeling in the air...the change of activity. Actually, I welcome it. Yesterday Owen and I decided to go shopping. I bought new clothes...I haven't done this in a long time! I've found that I'm much more interested in buying Owen clothes and stuff for our home that I think I've neglected myself. (not terribly of course, but somewhat maybe) I first noticed this when Josh (the most un-fashion conscious person you will ever meet) asked me when the last time I had worn a pair of jeans was. Honest answer? I have no idea. I've been living in about two pairs of dressy capris for the last several months. So I came home with new jeans, new cargo khakis and a couple of new tops...and it feels really good. Something about new clothes....they just make you feel....good (profound, huh?)
I'm also taking a stand against laziness. Yep. I've been incredibly lazy this summer. In keeping up my house, cooking, my devotions, my friendships, watching too much tv and not taking advantage of the crazy expensive membership at Healthplex that I keep. This all is changing. I'm enrolling in a women's study at church, joining a zumba class at healthplex, making menus for meals during the week and comitting to eating better, being more active with Owen and being intentional with relationships that need maintaining.
So I'm moving on. Its a new season, a new time of life and I'm resolving to do better. To play more with Owen and care less about whether my laundry is done; To embrace new friendships and cultivate stronger relationships through those that are in my life and can bring encouragement to my journey; to be intentional about my relationship with Jesus with hopes that pursuing a relationship with him will not only permeate my own life but will overflow into the life of my husband and son.
Thats about all I have to say about that! But with all this change...I've decided to make another one:
I've decided to make the move....the move to blogspot that is.
This decision has been made for many reasons, a couple I will highlight here:
1. I don't think anyone...and I really mean ANYONE reads my xangas anymore (which brings me to the question...why am I writing this post at all? Well, I felt I owed it to xanga. It has been so good to me)
2. Blogspot is much more user friendly and I think our families will have an easier time navigating it
3. Josh and I are going to do a combined family blog. He will write some, I will write some. We won't have to do things so separately anymore. the spirit of starting something new, I invite you to follow me/us to our new place of blogging. I think you'll fnid it quite lovely.
So...goodbye dear xanga. And thanks to everyone who has encouraged me and helped me on my way to this point...I hope you'll continue to read at our new place.

Welcome to our journey....

The Blessing- by John Waller

"Let it be said of us while we walked among the living
Let it be said of us by the ones we leave behind
Let it be said of us that we lived to be a blessing for life
Let it be said of us that we gave to reach the dying
Let it be said of us by the fruit we leave behind
Let it be said of us that our legacy is blessing for life
This day you set life, you set death right before us
This day every blessing and curse is a choice now
And we will choose to be a blessing for life
Let it be said of us that our hearts belonged to Jesus
Let it be said of us that we spoke the words of life
Let it be said of us that our heritage is blessing for life"

I have long loved this song and have wanted to make ito ur family creed for some time. It is our hope that when you come to "visit" us that you will be blessed; not only by pictures and sweet stories of Owen (because lets be honest...he's pretty great!), but also by what God is doing in our lives. After blogging on Xanga for the last couple of years, we feel that this site will be much more user friendly and will encourage our family to visit with us more often. To our fellow xanga friends and readers, we welcome you to continue reading! Thanks for joining our journey!

Josh, Kim and Owen