Sunday, March 31, 2013

Memory Verse to Meditate On

Ephesians 1: 18

"having the eyes of your hearts enlightened, that you may know what is the hope to which he has called you, what are the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints."

This particular verse jumped out at me tonight. I would encourage you to read all of Ephesians 1:15-23 though.


Easter has arrived and we celebrate the fact that


My door is no longer covered!

Check out the story here!

Happy Easter!

Julie & Milton

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Things That Brought Me Joy

This lovely 'act of kindness' someone left at our doorstep!

Reading a book to this little gal on my lunch hour one day! 
To hear her say "I love you too Grandma" made my heart melt like no other!

Receiving an email with this form attached! 
Ok honestly I first felt excited and then nervous! It's something 
I want to do, but that little thing called fear is trying to win out!

This just sweet gift from my anonymous prayer partner.
The towel is yellow my favorite color & the saying is just perfect

!And those bunnies, who can't smile when they look at them?

Sneaking this picture of Daddy coming home and his little girl greeting him after 
spending 2 hours playing in the playhouse he's building!

Non- Photo Joys!
Surprising my daughter at school for lunch and watching her & 11 other Pre-K kids sing for 15 minutes! :) Priceless!

Getting a phone call from my California Girl and hearing her wish her little sister Happy Birthday.

Attending Maundy Thursday services with my family. Then holding my "little' girl on my lap and thinking back to 5 years ago exactly at this time I wasn't able to hold her yet.

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, March 29, 2013


My front door doesn't look like this anymore.

It looks like this.

If you know why , you know the gift we all received for our sins.

If you do not know, click here to find out.

May you have a blessed weekend.

If you would like to visit more about this, feel free to contact me via email at

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Cowgirl Boots, Safari Animals, and 5 Year Olds!

We no longer have a 4 year old in the house! Yep, PV officially turned 5 today!  Time has passed us by at a lightning speed it seems to her Dad & Momma!  Why just yesterday we were becoming a family.  If you haven' t read that story, you can here, but you might want to find a comfy chair. It's a long one!

I'm celebrating by naming 5 things I love about her!

1. The fact that she still wants to be with her Mom & Dad most of the time! And she thinks we are still cool!

2. Our Sunrise "Thank you Jesus" morning moments!

3. Her love of hotels/motels.  I am not kidding.  I'm afraid she will be wanting a penthouse hotel suite verses the farm house her Daddy built someday! We really do think she loves them from living in them the first 2 weeks of her life!

4. The "tilt of the head" plus "the grin" she displays when she wants to  go to Grandma's, get a snack, or watch a little more TV!

5. Her popcorn addiction - because this truly  came from her father's love of it. She does eat it slower than him though! :)

Milton's particpated in the 5 things he loves about her!

1. The way she giggles.
2. That she loves wrestling with me.
3. Her smile.
4. Her brown eyes.
5.That she helps me with the farm.

I'm very excited about the theme she chose for her birthday cake this year.  Safari Animals!  We searched online to get ideas! And no I do not make her birthday cake.  We order it from the cake lady we always have since we brought her home!  I'm not a cake decorator folks! :)

We are blessed with lots of family that came to celebrate with us.  Milton & I took her shopping last week and she got her first pair of cowgirl boots.  Let's just say I think she looks rockn' and she LOVES them! 

We have a family dream of going to Africa to see the animals in their
element someday! Can't wait!

Like I tell her,  "I'm so glad God chose me to be your Mommy"!  She just giggles that giggle her Dad loves so much and says "me too"!  I hope her response never changes or that giggle!

Thanks for stopping by & celebrating with us!

Julie & Milton!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Sweet Spiced Turnovers

Today I took a new recipe for a test run.  It comes from a cookbook that has LOVELY photos and ideas for gatherings.  I have not made but one other recipe from it.  By the way, I enjoy reading cookbooks, especially ones with pictures!  So if I see a beautiful front cover cookbook (or magazine) I have a hard time not purchasing it!  

Who wouldn't want to eat at that table???

This is the photo of the turnovers from the cookbook! 

Ingredients are: 
Yep, the powdered sugar didn't make it to the photo shoot!
It was runny late as usual!

Here are the pastry puff laid out flat, my lovely husband must have read my mind, 
because I didn't tell him I was making this today.  
He put the groceries away he night before after we got home. 
He put the puff pastry in the refrigerator verses the freezer! :)

The spread for inside the turnover!

The spread on the puff pastry!  

Puff pastry cut into triangles. The recipe didn't tell how many it
makes. So my first set I cut too many rectangles, they are smaller.
Cut 3 rectangles is my suggestion.

Here is the brown butter frosting. I had never had a recipe call for 
browning butter before. 

My finished product. There is a reason I am only showing you one.
My kitchen performances are far from perfect, but I am not that "balanced" 
of an individual to show you the rest that aren't as lovely looking! :)

I hope you enjoy today's recipe!  Give it a try!  I did!

Thanks for stopping by!

Sweet Spiced Turnovers

1 pkg. frozen puff pastry sheets                
4 oz. cream cheese
1/2 c. brown sugar                                      
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg                             
4 tbsp. butter, softened
1 egg white

Brown Butter Frosting
1/2 c. butter
3 tbsp. 1% milk
1 tsp pur vanilla extract
3 c. powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Thaw 2 pastry sheets. Unfold each sheet and lay flat.  Blend softened cream cheese, brown sugar, cinnamon, and nutmeg together.  Spread 2 tbsp. softened butter over each pastry sheet.  Divide the cream cheese spread in half and spread evenly on the pastry sheets.  Fold over each sheet in half.  Cut into rectangles.  Then cut rectangles in half creating triangles.  Pinch the edges by pressing down with a fork, to keep the spread inside.  Place on a baking sheet and brush with egg white.  Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

While turnovers are baking prespare the Brown Butter Frosting.  Lightly brown butter in a medicum saucepan, stirring so butter will not boil.  Remove from heat.  In a small mixing bowl combine milk, vanilla, and melted butter.  Add powdered sugar and beat utnil thick and smooth.  Place frosting in a Ziploc bag.  Cut off the tip of one corner and drizzle Brown Butter Frosting on top of turnovers and serve.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Peace of Home

On a rare occasion I like to share a personal journal entry. Today happens to be one, but it was written a  few weeks ago.

My husband took this photo of me, he actually took a couple,  while I was on the fence pondering things (without my knowledge until this shot.)  This is the only one I will share.... it was on the exact day I wrote the words below!


Today we sorted cattle together.  Paige, Milton, Dad  and I.  I mostly took photos but did get my boots dirty!         Finally! :)

I really enjoyed being out there helping and also just taking photos.  I know these memories will be important in future years.  For Milton,  when his dad is gone and Paige when we are gone. 

As we finished up, I was sitting alone on top of the fence, leaning against a wood post.  At that moment,  I felt a calmness that I haven’t felt often in my life.  I sat there and just let it soak in.  It was as easy as breathing.  

I looked off into the distance and thought to myself, “this is why God brought me to this place,  to this man.”

It truly felt like the a piece I had missing for so long, in my life, my body, my soul.  It had been filled.

It felt like home.

I thanked God, and then began enjoying it even more.

Thanks for stopping by! Julie

Monday, March 25, 2013

Emotional Sunday & a Gift

This past Sunday, I found myself feeling more emotional  than usual while at church.  During worship it was heightened when the children came in waving palm branches through the sanctuary while we sang. Allowing myself to feel and accept what God did for me and so many others, my emotions were slightly hard to contain.

Then I watched from afar as my young daughter at children's moment,  make the sign of the cross. (insert a large *gulp here). Witnessing her look up at the Pastor as he told about Jesus. (I didn't need a camera, that photo is now etched in my mind.)

My heart welled inside and tears were filling my eyes.  No one noticed.  No one knew.  Only God and I.  Perhaps they were tears for I know what lies ahead this week in regards to the story we will remember, or possibly the fact that I felt I had made a good choice as a parent to teach my child from birth about God. Which includes surrounding our family with people who feel the same way as us.  At this point, I am not 100% sure why the tears were there.

It's Holy Week

In the children's moment, Pastor asked the children, what would they do if Jesus were right here today.  It got me to thinking. (of course -I'm a thinker you know!)

Would I bow down, wave my hands in cheering, dance, hug Him, or sit at his feet humbly.  I'm going to ponder this one a little longer.  How about you, what would you do?

Back to my youngest daughter.  As a parent, it's my responsibility to arm her with things she will need to live a life of gratitude, protection, and contentment, to name a few.  My job isn't just to teach her how to fold the laundry, cook a dish, be healthy, and to respect others.  

It became crucially obvious to me today, that teaching her the Word is important so she can come into all those other things with the best ability possible.  

So today, as I witnessed her participate in an act that her father probably did in the same church so many years ago, and that she knows the sign of the cross, and that we are fortunate to have others to help us teach her, I feel we are on the right track.

I don't know the Bible by heart, and I still don't reflect all the Fruit of the Spirits like I should, but I think if I love my daughter enough, and I work at my own relationship and knowledge of God's word.  I think I will be doing my best.

One of the things that continues to stay in the back of my mind and keeps me moving forward is the fact that I know how it feels to not be armed with the proper tools.  I want her to grow up with tools I had felt missing in a chunk of my life.  That is one of the reasons I continue to work at growing my own relationship with Christ. 

Even when I don't understand what a particular bible verse or story means, or why someone in the bible did what they did. I will continue to ask questions, ponder my thoughts, read the bible, attend worship, bible study, and work on those Fruits of the Spirit.

Honestly, I will be learning from and learning with my young daughter in the years to come. My hope is that she will be filled with the "tools" she needs for both  the darker times AND the joyous times of life.

No matter what, she has been given a greater gift than I will ever be able to give her.

The gift that was given all those years ago from God..... the sacrifice of His Son for her sins. 

There's no changing that. 


P.S. - HE did it for you too! Isn't that awesome!

Things That Brought Me Joy!

I love feeling joy!  Here's a few shots of what brought me joy this past week!

Receiving this HOMEMADE apron from my California Girl KVH!

Creating this little box of kindness for a church member!

Watching her open a package from Sissy (California Girl)

Seeing the beauty from California!

Getting to see this little girl and that beautiful smile! 
Getting to watch my baby play with her baby!
We enjoyed celebrating with many family members that were gracious enough to weather this funky spring weather to attend PV's 5th birthday party!  Some we had just seen that morning, some we had not seen for a few months! We are so thankful for all of them!  

Have a great week!

Thanks for stopping by!


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Spring Time on the Farm!

Although on this Palm Sunday, the weather outside is more like this than the photo above, 
 it still means spring time activities on the farm are just around the corner.

View from my kitchen window, yes I cheated, I did not go out in it!

Springtime means that the wheat is waking up from a winter's sleep and 
if you take a gander out your car window as you drive in the rural areas, 
you will probably see green crops, which look like grass coming alive.

Milton and his father will be starting to have fertilizer put on the wheat.
They will get their corn seed together and planting will begin in early April.  

I like this time of year, it brings a new start to things.
A fresh beginning of planting for the garden, our lawns look more alive, 
the evenings have more daylight, and the flowers and bushes come alive!
More energy seems to be in all aspects of living things!  

The countryside awakens as well.  
More countryside activity brings a renewed hope of another year of bountiful crops 
and growth in this thing we call the world.  
It feeds not only people at our table but around the world.  
Although we are a small piece of that hope, 
we are still a piece of a community that we are proud to belong to.

May the freshness of your Spring hold lots of 
good memories, bountiful blessings, and renewed faith in this life.

Thanks for stopping by!


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Ranger Cookies

A couple weeks ago I made these cookies for my husband.  They are his favorite cookie and the recipe comes from his Mother.  Honestly, I am not a cookie maker, never have been.  But I wanted to do something nice for Milton, and he loves these cookies.  I hope you enjoy them as well! They are pretty simple to make!

Ranger Cookies

1 C. Oleo                         2 C. Flour
1 C. White Sugar              1 Tsp. Baking Soda
1 C. Brown Sugar             1 Tsp Baking Powder
1 Egg - well beaten            1 Tsp. Vanilla
2 C. Corn Flakes               1/2 Tsp. Salt
2 C. Quick Oatmeal           
1 C. Coconut

Cream the oleo and sugars, add in the egg and mix.  Then add in the rest of the ingredients.  It will be a drier dough to work with.  Take a teaspoon size of dough and roll it into a ball. Place on non-greased cookie sheet. Smash slightly - I used a glass cup.  Bake at 350 degrees fro 10 - 12 minutes.  

* Hint - on any type of cookie if you want them to stay soft, place a piece of bread in the bag or container you are storing them in.  They will soften and the bread becomes hard.

Dough ready to make into the balls to bake.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Like A Stoplight

This song began to play one day this week on my way to work. I had never heard it before. The words did speak to me though and I felt compelled to ponder my thoughts as I drove the rest of the way to work.

 I literally found myself to be  fixated on the red stoplight and the words in the song.

I found myself unable to look away.... literally.

How many times have we lived like that?

Population Me.

Did you catch that in the song, if not go back & listen to it.  
Or you can read the words by clicking here.

I find myself doing that.
Living in my own world, at times turning a blind eye to what is right in front of me.
To what God is presenting to me in a manner that should be
easy for a person living the faith to see.

Due to human nature though, I turn away.

  I want to

be better

do better

 try harder.

To not live in a Population Me world.

I want to lend a hand to the person in need, make calls for the elderly that aren't able to understand this new finagle world of Internet and automated voices when you call in to places, I want to help that child grow in the hobby they are just realizing brings them joy, and I want to pull a team together to donate time to spend a few days fixing a church member's beloved home that they are unable to themselves,
volunteer at a soup kitchen and read to the elderly in nursing homes,
and go on a mission trip once again,
visit with teens about what it's like to be a teen parent,
and the list goes on.

But I let fear and busyness keep me from doing just that.  
Fear is created when I do not allow myself to live to my full potential.
Fear is created within me when I listen to the doubting thoughts in my head.
Fear is created when I do not study the Word or
fellowship with the Body of Christ regularly.
Busyness I fill with blog posts, mindless TV shows, dinner dates with friends,
surfing the web, pinning things I may never complete, family activities, a job,
and just daily life.

Couldn't I take the busyness, and add one of those activities I desire to do?

Like the stoplight. 
I find myself doing the following.



Maybe I should fixate on the Green!


When will I begin to put that faith in action?
When will I subside the fears and clear the busyness for things that would aide others?

When will my life become more than POPULATION ME.

I may need a team to help me create this, I may need a friend to push me,
and I may need my blog followers to hold me accountable.

What creates a light in you? What gets you to GO that next step?

Thanks for letting me express my thoughts and for stopping by!


* Music credit to Matthew West - "Own Little World"

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Educating at the Farm

Almost one year ago, we had the pleasure of hosting a few young visitors and their families (about 25) to our farm.  Once they finished a visit to a nearby farm with cattle, they headed our way.  We primarily covered our farm equipment, and then led them to the wheat field that sits basically in our backyard (at least that year, this year it will be corn)

It was interesting to watch the children and parents listen to Milton explain about the pieces of equipment.  Some of them didn't have much knowledge of a farm and had never been that close to the large equipment.  
He is explaining about the planter.
RV joined right in at times too! He has lots of experience with farming!

Milton is explaining how the grain drill works!

Milton is explaining to the group how much seed
it takes to produce a wheat crop.
See in April, it's green, come June/July it
hopefully golden yellow!

I am very proud of Milton, speaking in front of groups isn't his favorite thing to do, but he did a great job!  And with practice it just gets easier! 

I can't wait until the next group comes out, or our neighbor kids wanna ride in the combine or tractor is just as fun too! We love to give rides & Milton is great at explaining while actually working!

If you are in our area, feel free to email us at or contact us via our Facebook page, we would love to have more visitors!

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Farmer Father In Law

My father in law is the person I wanted to celebrate today in agriculture, since it's National Agriculture Week.  He is the person that taught my husband about farming, is by his side most days, and is a lovely soul with the wisdom of many years. He knows more than we could imagine, he can talk to anyone, and he works harder than most people half his age.

RV was born in the home that he still resides in with his wife of over 50 years, and in that house they raised 4 sons.  Each one of those sons (from what I can tell), took away a strong work ethic, and part of their father's personality.  Which is a compliment in my books!

RV is a man that has a strong back, although his body frame may be of smaller nature.  I can't imagine what he has seen in his 84 years young (in farming or otherwise) in this lifetime.  The issues, the joys, and the pride he must feel each morning waking and being able to do something he absolutely loves!  Farming is in his blood and I feel quite fortunate that I (and my daughter)are able to witness him in his element on a regular basis.

I find a lot of nostalgia in my heart when I see MV and RV working side by side.  Whether it is working cattle, harvesting wheat, fixing a piece of equipment, or sitting around a family dinner table.

I have only known RV about 11 years and I feel he is a honorable man that can walk tall for he has worked hard, lived a life of faith, and loves his family, especially his grandchildren dearly.  I love to hear his little laugh, when one of the younger ones says or does something!

Today I celebrate the Farmer that began it all for the most important Farmer in MY life, my husband.  I feel honored to call this man my father in law. I thank him for spending years building a legacy, so our family could carry it on, and hopefully generations to come.

God Bless this Farmer.

Thanks for stopping by!


Monday, March 18, 2013

Sharing Recipes - Building Memories & a Birthday to Boot!

I love it when I get a gift from someone but especially when it's from someone I don't ever expect getting a gift from!  I have this little gal friend, let's call her Magigail.  By the way she is turning 9 this week!  Well last week I received this lovely little bag with a recipe and super cool drawing on the front of the recipe card!

Check out that artistry! I mean really! Spectacular!

When I peaked in the bag, (because I couldn't wait to see what was inside until I got home that night), I found INGREDIENTS!  Isn't that just awesome!  She gave me the recipe AND some of the ingredients to make a super delish cake!

Well I decided to make the cake this weekend in honor of Magigail's 9th birthday!  This is to celebrate the existence of her and the fact that she loves to cook as much as me!  I look forward to exchanging recipes with this little gal friend for many years to come!  I think this has begun a trend!  I can see it now, when I am 70 and she  is 37 we should have lots of great recipes! :)

And the best part is, she made sure to let me know that you need to put Strawberries & Whip Cream on it!  THAT made the entire dish.. otherwise it'd just be a big ol' chocolate chip cookie!

Thank you Magigail!  Tag, I'm it! (on delivering a recipe to you!)

Do you have a recipe that you treasure or that you would like to share?   Feel free to comment below or email to me at betweenthesunsets@!  I love new recipes and will probably feature it!

Thanks for stopping by!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Cake

1 C. Flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
1 stick butter, room temperature
1 C. Brown Sugar
Egg - 1
1 tsp. Vanilla
1 C. Chocolate Chips

Whipped cream & Fresh Strawberries

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Grease pan and put a little flour in it to coat, tap excess out of pan into trash can.

Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt.  Beat butter & brown sugar then add with flour mixture.  Put the egg & vanilla in and mix till done.  Then put the chocolate chips in and mix.  Put the mixture in a pan and bake it for 30 minutes.  Let it cool then decorate  with toppings. Enjoy!