I'm sitting in a VBS planning meeting (not FPC), and we're discussing all things Bible school related. Our curriculum this year is a repeat and I realized I had the transparencies for that year's music. "Great!" said the pastor leading the meeting. Then, he got this starry look in his eyes and said, "Oh, man, wouldn't it be great if we could get one of those projectors that projects from a laptop? That would be great!!!"

What is the deal? Why are people so obsessed with and determined to use powerpoint? "It would make it a lot easier" he said.


One of the greatest lies of our times is that powerpoint lyrics are easier and better than transparencies.

Consider the transparency process:

1. Type the lyrics into a standard word processing document.

2. Print

3. Place on overhead, turn on. Adjust if necessary for focus.

4. Sing. Move the doohickey up and down if needed to move the words.

Powerpoint process:

1. Type the lyrics. Break them into segments. Add cheesy graphics.

2. Save onto a disc, or somewhere on laptop

3. Set up the projector.

4. look for a cord that will enable your laptop to work with that projector.

5. Fail. Find someone else's laptop that has the right cord

6. Burn disc, transfer to new laptop

7. Gather everyone

8. Turn on projector and allow it to warm up for X minutes

9. Turn on computer.

10. Search for files while everyone preparing for worship sees the embarrassing desktop wall paper and follows the mouse as you click through the computer.

11. Re-activate the projector as it's gone to sleep.

12. Start singing. Have someone available to scroll through the lyrics.

13. OOPS! We've lost the third verse (Scroll, scroll, scroll)

14. Sing song number two. It repeats the same lines so often the computer goes to sleep--re-open.

15. Scroll through fifteen different songs to find the next one.

Can you, gentle readers, understand now why when I heard the phrase, "Oh, man, wouldn't it be great if we could get one of those projectors that projects from a laptop? That would be great!!!" I groaned deep down inside?

Good idea: transparencies. Bad idea: powerpoint.


Grace Like Rain

Today started out okay, but by noon it was not one of our better days.

Lack of sleep from transitioning Johnny to a "big boy bed" this week caught up with me. My energy level--low to non-existent. The amount of chores and jobs needing attention: High. As in a high pile of laundry and messy house. Oh, and what was that on the horizon? A bad storm coming, a hormone storm, that it.

I hate and despise myself during these times. I don't like to cry in front of others and was out on the grounds with the kids when it hit. I started speed walking to the house with Aubrey on my hip, praying no one would see me or drive up.

Tuan did and could tell something was wrong--

"I-have-to-get-home!" I kept walking and he put Johnny on the cart. (would have made more sense to ride home, but who has sense in these times?)

A cry at home, a hug from my husband and son, then, I'm sure, some silent prayers on his part and he had to go.

Grace rained down. Lunch came together. Children were calm and quiet and played while I finished tackling some chores. We read a story and they went to sleep followed soon by me. They've been asleep for several hours and I've had time to just be. To be quiet, to read, to catch up on a show, to do laundry. I'm much better, though I could cry at any sad thing that crosses my path.

And, my husband put a Papa John's pizza in the fridge while we were sleeping--can I say how much I love this man?

The rain coming down outside is renewing and soothing. I am so grateful to God who knew my needs and provided much better circumstances this afternoon. I'm looking forward to J and A waking up and for some good family time. God is so personal in his care for us.

Jehovah Jireh--
My Provider!
His grace is sufficient for me!

My God shall supply all my needs
according to his riches in glory.
He gives his angels charge over me.
Jehovah Jireh cares for me
Jehovah Jireh cares for me!

Kashi/Silk Deal

If you like Kashi cereal and Silk Soymilk, here's a great deal!
Target is selling a two pack of Kashi for 5.00 right now. It comes with an instant free soymilk coupon. If you follow this link you can get a coupon for 1.50 off the purchase of two boxes of Kashi.

Final price for two boxes of Kashi and a half gallon of Soymilk? 3.50.

I think even Martha would say it's a good thing!


A Marvelous New Recipe

We celebrated Tuan's birthday on Friday (it's actually today--happy birthday Tuan!) with a small gathering of friends. Johnny's party was on Saturday--I baked a LOT this week! This was a week of culinary and artistic highs. I made a fun book for a friend that allowed me to flex my rusty graphic design muscles, I baked a strawberry pie with the most successful pastry crust EVER (for me). The Settlers of Catan inspired cookies for Tuan's party--not so hot. They tasted fine, but my skills with tinting frosting leave much to be desired.

I needed another dessert to serve at the party and felt adventurous. At least two of the invitees had gluten allergies/issues, so I thought it would be fun to try something gluten free. This recipe turned up: Garbanzo Bean Chocolate Cake. I had all the ingredients on hand and decided to try it.

It turned out marvelously! It was deep, rich, and full of chocolate! As usual, I played with the recipe--'cause I'm self destructive like that. I substituted palm sugar for the white, cane sugar it called for. I noticed that it didn't make me sleepy afterwards like a lot of sugary desserts. If you try it and decide to use dark, or more bittersweet chocolate, increase the butter a bit to help it melt.

Here's my version:

Garbanzo Bean Chocolate Cake

Preheat oven to 350
Ideally, bake this in a non-stick springform pan. Alternatively, butter and dust with cocoa the sides and bottom of an 8 or 9 inch round cake pan.


1 16 oz can of garbanzo beans (chickpeas)
4 eggs
3/4 cup palm sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1.5 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 tbsp butter

Drain and rinse chickpeas. Place in the bowl of food processor, fitted with steel blade. Add eggs and process until smooth. Add the sugar and baking powder. Pulse to blend.

Melt butter and chocolate in a dry bowl--either in the microwave, in a double boiler or very carefully over low heat. Make sure that no water gets in the bowl or the chocolate could seize, or that you don't overheat the chocolate, lest it scorch.

Add the chocolate to the chickpea mixture and process until it's fully incorporated. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for approximately 40 minutes. The cake should be set--firm around the edges, slighty soft in the middle. If you stick a clean knife or skewer in the middle it will not come out clean, but moist and crumby.

I'm looking forward to trying some more variations of this cake: maybe some espresso in it, some caramel on top--it's scrumdiddlyumptious!