Monday, May 24, 2010

Tzatziki Sauce

We have a favorite Greek restaurant in town and they have the best Tzatziki Sauce. I've tried several recipes at home and none of them even compare. The problem was is that I wasn't using Greek yogurt. You wouldn't think it would make much of a difference, but it's thicker and has more of a sour cream texture. But Greek yogurt was hard to find until now. Yoplait has come out with their Greek yogurt. And it's delicious. I found it at my local grocery store near the regular yogurt.

I searched internet recipes and they call for 8 oz. of Greek yogurt and Yoplait only sells it in 6 oz. containers so I winged it and made up my own recipe using several recipes from online to guide me. Here's my Tzatziki Sauce:

Tzatziki Sauce

1 (6 oz) container Yoplait Greek Yogurt
3/4 cucumber, peeled, seeded and finely chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tsp cider vinegar
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1 tsp dill (more to taste)
salt and pepper to taste

Mix all ingredients well and refrigerate for at least 1 hour for best results. You can use your food processor if you desire a smoother consistency. Enjoy!

** We enjoyed our Tzatziki Sauce with sliced steak, onions, tomatoes, cucumber in a grilled pita.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Pudding Pops

We just made homemade pudding pops today. I remember eating them as a little girl. And boy, were they good! So creamy and delicious. So when I found this recipe I was excited to give them a try. The only hindrance was finding popcicle molds. I'd been looking for them for several months thinking that they would be more readily available in the spring/summer. But I just found them at TJ Max on Thursday evening. This morning we whipped up a batch and put them in the freezer. They were enjoyed this afternoon and were really yummy...not as good as the store-bought from the '80's but still, pretty good. I think next time I might try to do a swirl of chocolate and vanilla. Give 'em a try.

Pudding Pops
makes 6 popcicles

1 small package pudding mix
milk according to package
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup evaporated milk

Add milk to pudding mix according to the package instructions. Add sugar and evaporated milk to the pudding and mix well. Pour into 3 oz. paper cups or popcicle molds. Place in the freezer. When paper cups are partly frozen add popcicle sticks. Freeze until firm.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Words of Comfort

"Love begins before a baby is born... and that love will live forever in your heart. When you lose a baby, you lose not only the promise of a very special human being, but you lose many beautiful hopes and dreams as well."
I received this Hallmark card from a family at church and it was exactly what I needed to hear. I needed to know that losing our baby was a big loss. Losing the hopes and dreams of this baby. For what this baby would become. For who this baby would grow up to be. It's hard thinking of falling in love with a little person growing inside of you only to find out that that baby isn't alive anymore. This was a card that deeply ministered to me because it spoke of the loss I was feeling. Losing a dream, a hope, the promise of my very special baby.

To those who grieve in Zion -
"to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord for the display of his splendor."
Isaiah 61:3
I really appreciated these verses because that's what I pray for: for God to turn my mourning into gladness, my spirit of despair into praise and for Him place a crown on my head instead of ashes. I want to be joyful in my hope of salvation and be known as an oak of righteousness. But some days it's hard. I don't feel strong I don't feel like I'm displaying any splendor for the Lord. My mourning is so strong that I read these verses and pray that my hope will overcome my despair and that I may grow strong through this experience and be able to minister to women in a way I never thought I could or would.

"[God's] arms are big and strong enough to welcome your little one into His presence and hold you close in the midst of your grief."
This was just part of an email I received from a dear friend, and youth pastor's wife. I love the picture of God welcoming our little one home the same time he's comforting us during our loss. Our God is so big and so complex. I'm thankful for those words during this really difficult time.

"The Master Gardener has a place for little Buds in His Heavenly Mansion as well as flowers in full bloom and beginning to fade."
That was taken from an email from my husband's Gramma. She, herself, is a gardener and I had never imagined this word picture until she presented it. It is beautiful and since then we've been calling the baby 'Lil Bud. Thank you Gramma for your loving words.

These were just a few words of comfort that we've received over the last few weeks and we've been grateful for all of them. It seems like a lifetime ago and yet it seems like everything happened just yesterday. I haven't been able to write about the details of the day we found out and the days following including the day of the D&C. It's just been too emotional for me, but I pray that as time passes God will allow me to share those days with you. I feel like there may be a woman out there who is grieving the death of her little one and may get some comfort knowing that she's not crazy for feeling the way she does, that she isn't over-reacting, and that losing an unborn baby is a big deal.

Please continue to pray for me as we hit two milestones this week: Mother's Day and our regularly scheduled ultrasound at 19 weeks. Thanks.