2.26.2013

"the gospel in her home." (the idea)




and so yes, i have been missing. life has went crazy (and only to get crazier) and i am so excited to share some of our most recent journeys with you.

that being said, two dear friends of mine - allison and britney - have been chatting about a common thread found within our hearts as mothers, wives, homemakers, and daughters. al came up with the idea to do a weekly feature discussing how the gospel impacts our days as mothers: rather it be decorating our home, doing our dishes, disciplining our children, confronting our selfishness, or learning to serve our husbands. Jesus' beautiful story is living and active even now, and able to can transform our weary hearts.

it's a challenge really. how does the gospel - the message of the good news of salvation, the word of truth offered to mankind by grace through faith in the finished work of Christ on the cross. the message not only of eternal life, but one that encompasses the TOTAL PLAN OF GOD to redeem people from the ravages of sin, death Satan, and the curse that now covers the earth. it's the hope that comes with us ruling and reigning with him into the forever ages - this beautiful demonstration of love, that starts on the cross and reaches into the eternities of our fellowship with Him - how does it effect me in my seemingly mundane day to day life? how does it alter my lens of what is happening to me or around me? how do i see Christ within these moments? and even more, what is He saying today about His great love towards my family and I?

i am also excited because these ladies all represent a different facet of who God is - with unique insights into God, His Word, our roles, etc. Seeing Christ and His finished work applied to our lives will look and be processed differently by each of this. this is why i love the body of Christ! ultimately, the more Jesus is made much of throughout the Church, the more eyes that peer dimly and in part into who He is, and as each differing person declares the beauties they see, the more holistic of a view we can receive of God's glory and His story.

to all readers i encourage you to join in and post your link in the comments section. let's celebrate together the fact the gospel isn't a distant reality but a powerful force effecting our lives today!



2.09.2013

cinnamon raisin stuffed french toast - YES.



so i made this awesome stuffed french toast that was super easy, with random stuff i had in my kitchen. i adapted a recipe i found online. it was so bad (for me) (but at least i got some protein... ya?), but SO DELICIOUS.

ingredients ||
cream cheese, softened (i used whipped and recipe called for 4 oz but i eyeballed it)
honey
ground cinnamon
2+ eggs. (i used 3 eggs for amos and i's sandwich. it was a little extra)
some milk
butter for skillet
slices of raisin cinnamon bread - i used sprouted ezekiel raison cinnamon bread and it was yummmy
fresh fruit to make it look awesome
maple syrup to sweeten it

vanilla extract and nutmeg optional
fruit for inside sandwich, optional, but would be AMAZING

1 || In a small bowl, mix together the cream cheese, honey (depending on how sweet you want it. recipe called for sugar, but i thought this was a slightly better solution), and lots of cinnamon - maybe a teaspoon? I don't know, but whatever I put in - I could have used a little more. Mix until thoroughly combined. Spread the cream cheese mixture onto 4 slices of raisin bread (or however many you are serving). Top each spread slice with another slice of raisin bread to make 4 sandwhiches.

2 || In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs with milk and some cinnamon. Again - I don't know an exact amount. Maybe a teaspoon. I also added a splash of vanilla extract and a dash of nutmeg. Dip each sandwich into egg mixtures on both sides. You know, like french toast. :)

3 || Grease a skillet with butter, and place over medium heat. Brown the sandwiches in the skillet for about 2 minutes per side. I also poured the extra egg mixture on top because I need protein being big and pregnant and all.

Variations:
Next time I want to try sliced peaches, apples, bananas or pears between the sandwiches. I served with a little bit of maple syrup, but I don't think it's necessary. I also topped it with fresh fruit.


PS would love a vote from you today! just takes 2 clicks - and everyday counts. :)


2.07.2013

these glorious moments...





1 || my sweet son's profile, rocking his double chin. he's in 25 percentile in weight, so I have a feeling he'll be rocking it forever.
2 || daddy giving amos some loving discipline on our way to the common's good market on saturday. i just LOVE discipline. i know it sounds so silly, and perhaps i'll do a more detailed post about it in the future, but it is so fruitful and i KNOW is such a great way to love amos.
3 || amos putting in change at the meter at the san diego harbor. we walked around on saturday and amos pointed out all the things he saw, as well as the animals that were living underwater.
4 || a dead rat/possum? we found at target that amos was fascinated by.
5 || one of our last celebratory dates as a weekly team of two eating thai food.
6 || my new morning tradition : lattes with my aeropress. GO BUY ONE. SO WORTH IT. SO CHEAP. SO EASY. AMAZING ESPRESSO SHOTS.

ooooh! and in other news, looks like the house is a done deal. should be moving next weekend. so amazing and scary and awesome and PRAISE THE LORD! excited to share the journey with you. here's my office inspiration and some more details about our home.


PS would love a vote from you today! just takes 2 clicks. :)


2.06.2013

35 weeks // to growth, to life, to a new season



Time is moving quickly. I'm almost 36 weeks! That is one week from full term. I can't believe it, and yesterday as I was lying on the couch, on my side - feeling this little one kick and squirm within me I just started crying with joy! I just cannot wait to meet her! It's hard to imagine loving a little one as much as I love Amos. I know that's a common thought among mother's of second babies. I'm not concerned it won't happen - it's just overwhelming to think a heart can hold so much love. It's just a glimpse of the capacity of our Father. He loves each of us with the same passion, intensity, and fervor. Not one of His gazes upon individuals is lessened by another. Person after person enters the human existence, and the love of the Father is so great it can hold them all. Never stretched beyond capacity. Never borrowing from another to give to someone new. 

I am thrilled to grow this family. I've tried hard to not dwell on my moments with Amos as our "last ones" but see them as the ending of one chapter and the beginning of another. I am so confident of God's sovereignty and the beauty of community, the family of God. I know the Father sees it best that Amos share his mama, to learn to give and lead and nurture within his home. And even more, when one is added to the Church, we are in no way hindered - but only blessed, only enriched. I am exceedingly joyful for this blessing, this enrichment - this beautiful addition.

Little Lucia, be kept safe by our God, your Creator - in these last few weeks. We cannot wait to meet you, to do our best to point your heart towards His glory, His beauty - the Reason for your very existence. How grateful we are that He has given you life and begun your story!




2.05.2013

Guest Post ||| Al from AfterHisSmile: Joy in the Days

hi there, i'm al from www.afterhissmile.com. when i started my blog my plan was to do/write about anything having to do with family & being a mommy... so i did a lot of recipes & some DIYs (the normal mommy blog stuff), but as i've grown in my blog i'm reminded that THE MOST important thing to cling to as mommy is the gospel of Christ. what are we, what do we have apart from Him? our efforts are empty & failing without our gracious Father sustaining us.

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our days as mommies & followers of Christ feel so pointless when we start feeling "what are we accomplishing?" it can be overwhelming at times... folding clean clothes & putting them away just to get them dirty again, washing dishes just to fill them with food & dirty them again, cleaning floors that will have dust & dirt scattered in minutes. but what joy to worship our Father in the daily... many days of repeat, dirty & clean, empty & full. our Father does this with us daily. we sin & He returns us to fellowship with Him as we repent & on & on it goes. this is redemption's work. filling what is empty, & making beautiful what was ugly. we are rehearsing the gospel in all of our mundane tasks. we are bringing Him glory. may we see our many days in a new light. He does not grow weary & impatient with us, praise the Lord! may He give us the grace to not grow weary or faint.

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the gospel proclaimed through pears sliced & juice poured to fill a little one's belly that will only be empty again. He sees us in our need & fills us & all glory is to Him.

thanks for asking me to post tiff!!! thanks for reading friends... stop by www.afterhissmile.com & say "hi". 
al

2.01.2013

a day with a 2 year old.



i wanted to share a guest post i did for ali over at afterhissmile. please go check out her wonderful blog!


hi! my name is tiffany valdez, and i'm a pregnant wife and momma of a little toddler named Amos. i live in beautiful, sunny southern California and am learning how to love and glorify Jesus in the midst of the craziness that is a stay at home mom's life. that's me and my little baby girl in my belly.

i thought i'd take you on a simple day with a super cute 2 year old. we were a little bit more "on the go" than usual this past Wednesday - but it was a rare overcast day, and i thought it would be a perfect day to capture some moments. i'm treasuring these last moments with just my little amos and i before our baby Lucia makes her way into the world.



our team of 2.5. :)


8AM
first stop is a local coffee shop: influx. has the best espresso, and a super clean, laid back environment. this morning we shared a bowl of yogurt and i had my standard cup of coffee. it's my current survival as i'm not sleeping so great anymore with a little baby girl kicking my belly all night. 

amos creating a dino war, and poor little triceratops seems a little outnumbered. we named him gideon. ;)
yummmm.

people watching with mr. dino.

finding a dino jungle.
10AM
we love to take small walks in the city and try to study as much nature as we can find. amos LOVES to find the little bugs in the plants or grass, and to point out all the different flowers he finds.

we go for a little walk and amos spends about 10 minutes studying the bees busy working on this bush. i love re-seeing life through a toddlers eyes.

11AM
we are moving into a new home (hopefully) on Valentine's day, so I've been busy scouring some second hand stores for some treasures to fill up the new place. we are going from a 1 bedroom apartment to a 4 bedroom house, so we have a lot of stuff to find!

we stop by goodwill to try and find some goodies.
I love this goodwill because it has an entire bookstore loft with this kids corner. it's always a fun and cheap activity to go read books with Amos, and then let him pick out one or two to take home.



12PM
amos showing off his new dinosaur book he picked out as we walk to a thrift store where i found a great vintage, wicker chair for our backyard. :)
sat for 30 minutes trying to decide on this second hand pull out bed sofa for our potential office/guest bedroom. i'm horrible at making big purchase decisions (even if it's a cheaper, second hand couch) and have passed up many good finds from hesitancy. i'm still dreaming of the modern leather white sectional that was here a couple months ago. i took the plunge with this vision in mind.

1PM
we go home and Amos eats lunch while i attack my embarrassingly large sink of dishes.

biggest excitement of our new house: a dishwasher. praise the Lord!


2PM
next task, prep dinner. i wing a ground a turkey, 3 bean chili. 



3PM
we attempt to nap but amos has been having a more difficult time lately. this day we laid for an hour or so, with no success. hoping this isn't the end of his 3 o'clock snooze.



4PM
we do some projects together. amos LOVES projects!

amos' new found love: dinosaurs. we stamp out each type and write their names by them. we then read about each one in his new, thrift store dino book.
then we go over our letters (he is still learning many of them: "what's this one, mama?!") with thomas, his past love. i love little boys and the things they love. trains, cars, dinos. little boys are so much fun!!!

5PM
Amos plays while I pick up before my husband Ricky comes home, and we eat our dinner. Ricky went to LA for a business meeting today on the train, and we are going to go pick him up in a little bit.

more dinos and trains. :)

6PM 
We head out to pick up Ricky downtown. it's pouring down rain, and due to Amos' lack of nap - he knock out 5 minutes into our drive. 



the rest of my evening is filled with spending some QT with my husband, feeding him some chili, and reading. i'm so thankful to the Lord for these seemingly mundane days. they are filled with such moments of grace and joy. He is so kind!


 thanks for spending the day, and i'd love for you to peek into some of our future days as a family of four over at see the skyline!

xo tiffany