Saturday, January 19, 2013

Cinnamon Raisin

MMMMmmmmm . . . 
I made cinnamon-raisin bread on Thursday.  I have been looking for a recipe that turns out sort of like my Grandma's cinnamon-raisin bread (which we always called "Grandma bread"), and this is the closest I've come yet!  I had it rest out on top of the oven this time, and it rose a lot more and the texture is even better.

The weather has been warm the last couple of days, so today I'm wearing a short-sleeved t-shirt under my cardigan instead of a long-sleeved one.  We are able to have the windows open in the afternoon because it's into the mid-70s.  Lovely!

SAD:  I'm thankful God provided so many fulfilling and encouraging meetings last week, because this week was less encouraging.  After all the excitement and after feeling extremely valued by the new church we're attending as well as from the meeting I had on Tuesday with the agency downtown, I had a bit of a hiccup when the first church that purchased my curriculum told me they are going to write their own.  They have a very small team (last time I was there, they had five students), and the person who e-mailed said that they are full and not able to accept any more students.  They complained the whole time about the price of lessons ($50/month is dirt cheap!) and she said in the e-mail their group "needs more".  Of course, they only ever chose to use the first nine lessons (the first module) for the last year and a half because they didn't want to spend the money to purchase the next lessons, so of COURSE they are going to want more! 

Now they have a volunteer who said she's willing to write their lessons.  So I have to make sure they know that everything they've been using is copyrighted and all that . . . also, I am an eager-to-please sort of person, so it throws my head into a tizzy.  What I am writing is the best thing out there, it's WORKING for the kids who have been using it as it's meant to be used and it really is GOOD.  In my professional opinion, but also in the minds of people I trust who know what they're talking about.  But sometimes I let my feelings lead me astray and I start thinking, "But what if it's NOT good?!"  Then Cindy stepped in and said, "That is a BIG Satan LIE."  Just what I needed to hear!

I am feeling pretty much back to my normal positive self; the steps forward God has allowed more than compensate for a few hurt feelings.  Also, yesterday was spent on tidying up the newest lesson for delivery on Monday, and I am very proud of it.  It helped me realize all over again that I am not wasting my time on something that's not valuable.

HAPPY:  The woman with whom I've been in discussions at our new church called again this week and said she brought me up in a staff training they were having (incidentally about leadership levels).  They were figuring out how to make sure that leaders share the church's vision and culture, and they're putting together a four-week leadership course for people who are leading other people at level four (see link above): reproducing oneself.  Before that, the team had decided that overall, people should be actively engaged in the church for six months before having the opportunity to lead a team.  This woman (okay, her name is Jessica) said, "But what if someone comes along with a great skill set?!  We need someone like . . . no, not someone like Christie - we need Christie!"  And she got feedback that there wouldn't be a problem having me lead a team as long as I'm involved and committed and available to go through that class.  So she called to clarify what our commitment is to the church and whether we really buy in.  I told her we signed up for Starting Point (getting to know the church and their beliefs and history and all that - though we have been poring over their website for weeks already!) and are taking steps to join a Life Group (small groups of people who are living life together and supporting each other on a more personal level).  After knowing that we are planning to stick around, she is able to advance the cause.

Juildeen and her Grandma, Elaine, came over yesterday afternoon to hang out and bake cookies.  While the cookies (Juildeen requested ginger snaps) were in the oven, Juildeen found a grabber tool and Allistair jumped at it.  She thought that was hilarious ("Allistair in the circus!" and "Allistair is dancing!").  She entertained him and herself for quite some time.

She doesn't like to help the cookies off the spatula when they're still hot, so she shakes the spatula up and down until the cookies fall off.  These cookies were on the tender side, and the ones that were treated that way broke into pieces.  She hung her head dramatically and said, "I'm a bad cook."  Once she tasted the cookies, though, and decided that they were good, I was able to convince her that she is a good cook!

Hope your weekend is a wonderful one!


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