Poached Eggs Over Cheesy Corn Tortillas


Recently I was visiting with some family and we were discussing the art of poached eggs. It’s one of those should-be-so-simple-to-do things that if you’re like me, you watched your grandma do it countless times, but it’s no longer such a common breakfast item made at home. I have noticed, however that it’s making a comeback in restaurants with all kinds of awesome variations. You can still order a traditional Eggs Benedict, but I love all of the creativity and style along with it. I am a pretty big fan of eggs. I eat them for pretty much any meal and I love to add them on top of some of my favorite meals. They are a great source of protein and I’m not going to get into the cholesterol discussion 😉.  This morning I was craving something cheesy and flavorful so I poached two eggs and put them on top of two cheesy fried corn tortillas topped with salsa and avocado. The poaching instructions are as follows:

Poached Eggs Over Cheesy Corn Tortillas

  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp White Wine Vinegar
  • 2 Corn Tortillas
  • 1/2 c Shredded Cheese
  • T tbsp. Salsa
  • 1/4 Avocado, Sliced
  • 1 tsp Chopped Cilantro
  1. Heat a shallow non-stick pan with 1.5" of 190 degree simmering water. Use a thermometer to make sure the temperature is right and stays consistently just hot enough that you can stand to put your fingers in.
  2. Add a tsp of white wine vinegar.
  3. Add 1 tsp of salt. 
  4. Crack your eggs into small custard dishes for easy transferring.
  5.  After a quick stir of the water, carefully place the egg dishes into the water and release the eggs to float in the water. 
  6. Cover the pan with a lid and let them poach for 5 minutes on the timer without removing the lid or checking on them.
  7. While the eggs are poaching fry two corn tortillas in some butter.
  8. Flip them over, add some shredded cheese and fold in half.
  9. Fry them to a light crisp until the cheese is melted and then set them aside on a plate. 
  10. When the 5 minutes is up for your eggs, use a slotted spoon to remove each egg from the water. You can lay them on a paper towel and cut off any excess pieces if you are able to pick them back up without breaking the yokes. I am that klutzy person so if you're like me just place them on your food or plate and trim the excess from there.
  11. Top with salsa, fresh avocado, cilantro and any other delicious toppings you have on hand.
  12. Enjoy!
  • Preparation time: 10 minutes


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Have you noticed that there are a lot of memes out there descrbing what we expect or desire to gain out of a relationship? Even as we view these biblical attributes of love, how many of us, if we’re honest would say we immediately looked at what we could gain in a relationship with someone who would love us this way before looking inwardly?  These traits are difficult and should put us all on blast, but this is how God loves us. Let’s make this a challenge for the month of February. That instead of looking for someone to meet OUR needs that we read these attributes and strive to BE that person no matter HOW others act or respond.. The tricky part is doing it without expectations in return. The truth is, people generally don’t know how to respond to real, healthy love so don’t be surprised if people respond a little rough and question your motives. Don’t forget to pray and ask God to do this work in your heart first. We have no purity of heart on our own so if we try to do this apart from God we might succeed at being nice for a short time but we will not have a lasting and genuine heart change. Who is with me in this challenge?

What is Love?

Love is the most sought after, yet the most elusive thing of all time. Not just romantic love, but love of all kinds. We were all created to need love and our desire to fulfill that need causes us to seek it out in any way that we think will scratch the deep itch within us. We often hear people say things like “If you really loved me you would ___”, or “If you really loved me you wouldn’t ___”.  It may not be said it in those words. Some of us might be a little more subtle in our approach, but in true human form, we strive to try to pigeon-hole other flawed humans to meet our needs by setting up certain parameters or conditions for them to meet. Everyone has an ideal list of how we wish to be treated. A sacred “do & don’t” list of ideals that we internally expect others to follow in order to make us happy. We fool ourselves into the delusion that if others would just play by our rules we could finally be fulfilled and happy. If that’s not crazy enough, we recognize that we don’t want to be held to anyone else’s standards, so we excuse our own failures by saying things like “nobody’s perfect” when at the same time we are holding a double standard by actually pointing the accusing finger at each other for doing the same things-completely blind to our own ways! What a set-up for utter disappointment, and so the cycle goes…

What is love really though? If you have ever been at a wedding, most likely you have heard a reading of 1 Corinthians 13, aka, “The Love Chapter”. Because of the association with weddings we tend to think this passage is about romantic love, but really the Apostle Paul was writing to the Corinthian church about their love toward one another. “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.  Love never fails”. This is only 4 verses of the entire chapter and that right there is enough to wreck us all! These are the attributes of love. It takes some maturity and self-honesty to read through this and examine our own hearts but it is also a very liberating thing to deal with our own heart issues and finally stop running away from them. The very first thing that jumped out at me through this passage was the pesky little line “it is not self-seeking”. Well, there goes my list of rules! That takes us right back to the beginning where we talked about the common “If you loved me you would___” and “if you loved me you wouldn’t ___” conditions. We are all guilty of trying to place expectations like these around someone’s neck like a noose. The truth is, whether we actually vocalize our expectations to someone or just inwardly resent them, holding expectations as an entrance or exit to our love is self-seeking behavior. If we are not willing to love that person freely, and assume the risk that they may not return love to us on our terms, or may not do what we want them to do, we are not actually loving them at all. We are simply making an agreement or contract with them, or holding them under emotional blackmail. This is why we come up feeling empty.  Having said that, this also does not mean that in order to love someone we have to tollerate undesirable or unacceptable behavior, nor choose to be around it. It simply means we do not let (good or bad) behavior  or conditions determine, influence or change our love. More simply put: we love (value) someone for who they are and not how they are. They can’t add more value by behaving better, nor can they lose value by behaving worse. Therefore, behavior may change some circumstances, and it may certainly bring consequences, but love does not allow us to change the value of a person based on their behavior. 

So what are we afraid of? We are afraid of emptying ourselves out and being left humiliated and empty in our vulnerable state. We’re afraid of being used up of the best of ourselves only to be unloved in return. In our fear we try to give only part of ourselves, but we hang on to the rest because the desire to try to protect ourselves is so overwhelming. Unfortunately, our attempts to protect ourselves actually cheapens the value of our sacrifice. When the sacrifice is cheap, so is the reward. This is why we are unfulfilled. It actually has nothing to do with how we are loved, and everything to do with how we are loving. Jesus himself, set the standard in his ultimate sacrifice. While the entire world rejected him, hated him, spit on him, tortured him and even his own closest disciples denied and betrayed him, Jesus took on the sin of all humanity and faced the epitome of being used up and completely “alone” when even the Father was forced to turn his face away from him because of our sin. He loved at the greatest cost with nothing in return for him. He loved us first with no expectations. Even if we never choose to love him in return (many don’t and unfortunately many never will) he will never stop loving and pursuing our hearts. We were created  with the need for God’s love. Without it, our relationships will be out of balance. We will fill our lives with things and come up empty until we truly come to know him.  The tricky  thing is most of us feel like we could do a little better in our relationship with God, but we are really good at telling ourselves we are ALL IN with our relationships with people. We are masters at deceiving ourselves. This is why it is critical that we have a daily walk with God, we need to read his word every day and ask him to show us the deceitful things hidden in our hearts. The word of God and our relationships with others is the  indicator that shows us where we are at with God. We can’t love God without loving people, but we desperately need God in order to love people. It’s funny how God made those two things so interdependent! There is just no getting around this and the most frustrating part is that other people actually reveal the selfish tendencies inside of us. This is not to say that other people will not do things that violate our trust or hurt us, but the amount of emotional turmoil we allow ourselves to entertain has everything to do with the amount of responsibility we are taking in our relationships, and how much we are blaming on others. Love recognizes pain as an indicator that we need God to change our own hearts, and in order for God to work change in us we have to be willing to surrender our will, our desires our attitude and yes, even our feelings. Our feelings will scream at the injustice of laying ourselves down unselfishly. Our feelings will always point blame the other way before accepting responsibility. Even if we feel like we are the only ones in the relationship accepting fault, or even if we feel our part is the smaller part in the equation, the moment we complain- even to ourselves, we are no longer sacrificing anything. The moment we expect something in return, it is no longer an act of love but an act of barter. When those feelings rise up and we instead ask God to help us, he can work in our hearts and do in us what we can’t do on our own. We can only take responsibility for ourselves and we have to trust that God will fulfill us when we do that. It doesn’t guarantee us that others will respond appropriately, but they stand a better chance this way, and most importantly, we become free from the empty cycle. 

I want to be very clear. I am NOT describing, nor condoning an abusive or co-dependent relationship. Love does not mean saying yes to everything or being manipulated to do things against our will. Healthy boundaries are vital in a healthy relationship so if someone you are in relationship with is trying to manipulate you, that is self-seeking behavior, and giving in to it is not loving to them or to you. Jesus is our perfect example of love and even he did not allow anyone to push their own selfish agenda. In fact, those who had a selfish motive around Jesus caught a shockingly aggressive side of him. He sharply rebuked them and made it clear that he was there only to fulfill the will of God and not man. Even the  sacrifice he made was the will of God and not man although it was fulfilled through man. 

 A beautiful thing happens when we lay our expectations down. The other person now feels the incredible freedom to choose  to love in return and because they chose it without anything  expected of them, there is now a genuine purity of their love to be enjoyed without any doubts. That is the most fulfilling kind of love there is, and is exactly what Jesus came to teach us. We love Him because He first loved us.” 1 John 4:19

How Can I Bring Change to a World in Need?

  • Recently God showed me two very important things about prayer. The first was that prayer is not about begging God to do something he doesn’t really want to do. When we are praying for things that align with God’s word sometimes it can feel like we are literally begging God to care. The truth is, when we invest our hearts outside of ourselves into something enough to pray more than just a one-time prayer, our own compassion grows. God fuels this process of tension and frustration to build within us so that we will continue to pray and our love and compassion for those we are praying for grows. It is not us changing the heart and mind of God toward people, but God, through our prayers changes our hearts and minds. God called us to prayer because without it we become self-absorbed and without purpose. Unfortunately, for many of us our prayers sound a bit like Christmas wish lists. I’m not saying it’s wrong to ask God for things, but if our prayer time is centered around a desire for comfort for ourselves and those we love we will be self-centered, empty and without purpose. This is a very selfish and unbiblical approach to prayer and is unfortunately, why so many have not found a real connection with God. We were called to be like Jesus, and to be like Jesus is to step out of our own world, care for whom and what God cares about and be partners and partakers in God’s work. In many cases God has already said “yes” to some of our prayers and it may already be written in his word but he needs us to get on board and get motivated. This happens when we pray because when we petition God we become infused with God’s love and God’s power. The second thing God showed me is that often times during this process God will allow enough tension, frustration, love and compassion to build in us that he can then finally use us to take action. If he had asked us to to do it before we started praying, we wouldn’t have had the heart for it. We might look at the situation and think, “how sad, someone should do something” but after we have invested our hearts into praying for it, our hearts are changed and we see things we hadn’t seen before. God then begins to give us vision and courage to do things we may feel like we don’t know how to do but because we see a need, God’s love provides a confidence in us to do what must be done. These aren’t always big, dramatic things. Compassion is given away one small act at a time. Ask God to open your eyes each day and show you people around you who need compassion in any form. Commit to step out of your own world and give encouragement to the down trodden. Or simply meet an obvious need that might be right in front of you. This is what Jesus did and what he has called us all to do.

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Distressed to Beauty

I love the look of distressed furniture and I’ve really come to enjoy the art of distressing my own pieces. But when I really think about it, what is it about taking something and intentionally making it old that we love so much? With real antiques (which few of us can afford to collect) the idea of “aged” makes us nostalgic, the story behind a piece is romantic, this makes it unique and therefore beautiful. The colors between the scarred layers make us wonder where it has been. The flaws and markings of something made by hand increases it’s value and the fact that you will not find two identical pieces makes it special. 
We are like those antique pieces and our lives tell a story marked with pain and scars that display the beauty and uniqueness of who we are. The very flaws and irregularities that we love so much and seek out as rare or special in an antique, we foolishly spend an entire lifetime shamefully hiding about ourselves. I’m not talking about character flaws that we need to address. We are accountable for how we treat people and we need to be in constant pursuit of God to work change in our hearts, but those petty flaws about ourselves that we hide, or perhaps even some deep emotional or physical wounds. When we embrace these layers as part of our story they become a beautiful display of art. We were created with unique purpose by a creative God who loves us.
This time of year can be very difficult for so many. While it is a time of family and celebration for many, it can be a very broken, painful, distressing and lonely time for others. Today I am very mindful of broken and hurting people. We have all been there at some point so if you know of someone who needs some encouragement, please share this post to let them know they are loved. If you would join me in praying for the broken this season, please comment and let me know that you are praying with me. ♡


Meal Planning Tips

thanksgiving-kitty-in-the-kitchenThanksgiving is almost here and even though we have an entire year to prepare, it seems like I am always down to the wire those last few days trying to get my grocery list together and tackle the dreaded grocery store! I do love to catch the good sales that happen right at the last week and the majority of my shopping list are fresh items anyway so I don’t want to shop too far in advance. For our family, Thanksgiving is more than a turkey dinner. I make a ton of appetizers and we snack throughout the day before we eventually eat Thanksgiving dinner and dessert. Then for the next several days we enjoy a feast of all sorts. Not just basic reheated leftovers, but creative creations of turkey melts and appetizers, turkey pot pie and any other culinary creativity we can come up with while we relax, sit by the fire, binge watch movies, play games, eat some more, maybe do a little black Friday or cyber Monday shopping. All of that to say, my grocery list is huge!! Because I have been doing this for so many  years, here are a few organizational things I do to reap the benefits of shopping as late as possible, while keeping my plan from becoming a procrastination nightmare.

  • I keep a Thanksgiving Menu saved on my laptop. Really! The main dishes that are non-negotiables. You may think you won’t forget about those mashed potatoes but when you go to write your list you’d be surprised what you accidentally forget to write down!
  • I keep a side list of possible appetizers and sides that I can choose from. (also saved in the same place on my laptop)
  • I keep a typed “Needs” list of all of the cooking necessities I will possibly need to cook the food I have on my lists. This is an inventory check so I can write my grocery list based off of this.
  • You guess it! I also keep a saved grocery list. This may seem silly, but most of the items on my list are going to be on my list next year too.  Having the ready-made list means I can  simply cross things off that I already have in stock and the rest is ready to go once I add the sale items and any new recipe or appetizer ingredients I may be trying for the first time this year.
  • Shop during early morning hours or late night hours when the crowds are dwindled down. Unfortunately this means you will be shopping with the stock crew, but this is also beneficial to you because you will tend to get the fresher items as they are being restocked, and the items that employees that can help you with items that have depleted on the shelves are right there too. Just make sure to show them some extra appreciation for their help.
  • If you really don’t like to people at all, or you just wanna rock it millennium style and show Grandma how it’s done “these days”, you can do all of your shopping online using one of the grocery store “click & pull” services by going online and selecting all of the grocery items you want and paying for them online. Somebody else goes through the store for you and endures all of the things about grocery shopping that you are trying to avoid, and you get to show up about an hour later and load your groceries into your vehicle. If you’re funny about picking your turkey size and/or your produce you can do a combination of both. This is precisely what I have tried for the first time this year. I purchased my turkey and some produce. You usually have to spend a minimum of $25 to get your turkey at a sale price anyway. Since this year I will be traveling almost 3 hours to my daughter’s house, everything else will be purchased online at a grocery store near her house so I don’t have to haul all of the groceries, or shop when I get there. Whoever invented this service is amazing!!
  • Print the Menu. This helps keep me on track on Thanksgiving when I’m preparing appetizers and getting the big meal underway.

With a little bit of organization, your Thanksgiving is sure to go smoothly. The only thing you can’t prepare for is the unexpected uncontrollable, but you can be mentally prepared to adjust. The craziest Thanksgiving experience I have ever had was the year my oven decided to quit on the night before Thanksgiving. I went to put my pies in the oven and it was cold inside. Thanksgiving day I prepared an entire meal in an electric roaster, a toaster oven and a BBQ grill. Although it was tough, I saw it as an opportunity to flex my muscles as a cook. The meal came out beautiful, and was timed perfectly with no delays. I saw this as a win! The very next week I bought a new stove with double ovens!

Whether or not you have double ovens, check out this handy multi rack tower for your oven! This cures the problematic game of tetris around the big bird. This is Genius!!! An absolute must for Thanksgiving and Christmas!


There’s a Hole in My Boat


“You can’t blame the water for finding the hole in the boat…”

Blame is a weight of negativity that holds us captive in the boat of our circumstances. It lends complete control of our thoughts and emotional well being to the very person or thing in which we loathe. It stifles our creativity and our energy but it continues to sink our boat while we passively sit in it talking about our sinking condition. Accepting responsibility for our part in our chronic situations is the beginning of finding solutions. This isn’t to be passive or to say that we haven’t been treated unfairly or in some cases, even abused. It’s actually quite the opposite. It takes courage, character and backbone but we all carry a piece of responsibility in our own recovery process. When we are free from the weight of negativity we have the creativity to think of smarter solutions. If we take our focus off of the uncontrollable amount of water rushing into the boat, and look to the one who created us and wants to guide our steps, we will find the wisdom to address the hole in our boat.

Simple DIY Autumn Wreaths You’ll Fall For


I love fall and even though it’s still toasty warm here in Arizona, and my dogs are still swimming every day, I get excited as soon as October comes and I can start bringing out the fall decorations. We don’t see a lot of color change here since we are in the middle of the desert. With the exception of the few non-native trees that may have been planted in an occasional yard, or down the streets of our neighborhood, we don’t have any trees here that change color and shed their leaves so we literally have to create the look of fall with our decorations. I usually go crazy over sunflowers and all of the bright orange and yellow colors, but this time for my wreath I was captured by one single white flower, and all of the texture items so I built the entire look around that. I really loved the look of the creamy colors I was seeing in the stores and the way they brought out the beauty of the natural browns in the pinecones, acorns and sticks so I just grabbed a little variety of textures and a variety of tan and cream colors and. I chose the grapevine wreath because I knew I was going to leave some of it exposed intentionally since I love contrasting textures.

To make things easier I took wire cutters and trimmed just a small portion off the ends of the flowers. Just enough to separate the stems into individuals, but I left them long initially because some of them were much easier to work into the grapevine wreath by sliding the whole stem into the wreath. I just began pushing the stems into the wreath and moving them around until I liked the placement. For some of the flowers it was necessary to trim them all the way up to the head and then use a glue gun to place it where I wanted it to go. Just make sure you know for sure where you want it before you use the glue gun. While hot glue is easy to peel off of most things, it doesn’t do nice things to silk flowers.

The best part about picking a variety is that I had a lot leftover so I was able to make some mason jar flower arrangements.


Chalk Full of Paint Ideas

Chalk paint is a fun way to dress up almost anything with a little bit of charm and character by giving it an antique or distressed look. The appealing look about it is the very flat, lack of sheen on it. As odd and bland as that sounds, it makes bold colors look amazing and it means that you can put a fresh coat of paint on something without getting the cheesy look of a shiny new paint job. It’s a very simple and elegant look and allows some room for creativity to add detail where you want to draw attention.

There are name brands of chalk paint sold in craft and home improvement stores, but being the budget-friendly girl that I am, I’m always looking for the cheapest way to do things so this post includes a simple (and cheap) homemade recipe and some instructions. For those of you who would rather just buy the paint and follow the instructions, I’ve also included a few helpful links for some quality chalk paints and supplies.

The homemade chalk paint recipe is simple. I just buy the cheapest brand of paint in the color I want since I’m about to dump ingredients in it anyway. Don’t forget that the home improvement stores will color match any brand for you so you can choose any color from any paint brand and ask them to match it and make it with the cheapest paint brand they have in flat. Keep in mind you will be dumping plaster and water into your paint so I would not recommend spending a lot, but hey, that’s just me. This particular color is called “cottage white”. It’s my favorite white to chalk paint in for furniture. 

Chalk Paint Recipe

•8 oz paint
•2 tbsp. dry plaster paris
•2 tbsp. water

This is a very small portion and is actually the exact amount of paint in one of the $3 sample jars at Home Depot so if it is a small project I buy one of those and if it is larger I buy a whole can of paint and I just multiply out portions for my project. When you mix these ingredients together it should feel thinner than normal paint consistency, and of course, it will also feel grainy.

Before you paint

One of my favorite parts about chalk painting is that you don’t have to do a lot of prep work. You don’t have to sand down the wood or take off any other finish. You do need to check for any sticky labels, or substances to be removed. Goof Off is a great remover for that sort of thing. I remove any hardware and usually paint them in a contrasting metallic or black color. Last, I spray the whole piece with a primer. The primer serves three purposes.

  1. It gives the chalk paint an even, balanced surface to adhere to
  2. It ensures a balanced undertone beneath the paint
  3. It gives you a base color to draw out when you distress the piece. This feature is really fun when you use a contrasting primer color like red underneath a chalk paint color like white and then distress it enough that a lot of the red comes through.

Once your piece has an even coat of dry  primer, you are ready to paint! Paint using a brush, covering the whole piece in thin strokes. By the time you cover it all it will be time to go around the whole thing again. You will have to resist the temptation to paint with thicker coverage and just keep painting on the thin almost dry strokes around the whole thing. They will dry quickly and as you add more layers it will take on a full, rich tone. When it is completely dry you will want to paint on a wax sealer, or if you prefer a shortcut you can use a satin clear coat spray to protect it and seal the paint in when you are finished. This way you can wipe it down and dust it without disturbing the finish.

If you are not so much into the idea of making your own chalk paint there are a variety of chalk paint brands on the market varying in prices. Whether or not you choose to make your paint, you will need a few basic supplies to get you started on your first chalk paint project. Linked below are a few suggestions. Feel free to comment below if you’d like to share a favorite brand, technique, suggestion or brush type. There are so many ways to do this and I love hearing what other people do.

Tool Vanity DIY Project

Most people with tools have tool benches. This is my tool vanity. It’s a cute, but still sturdy and practical way to store and display my tools conveniently. My husband bought me these adorable pink tools for my birthday. Since I am constantly working on DIY and repurpose projects I really wanted them in an easy, hands-reach place, but I also really wanted to keep with the theme of my craft room.

I found an old nightstand and a large photo frame at a thrift store for super cheap so I decided to make my tool bench look dainty and cute like a makeup vanity, but just like my tools, all of that cuteness has to be matched with durability and reliability. After all, the point still is to have a sturdy reliable place for my tools!

I bought some peg board and some tool bench hooks and made some homemade chalk paint to give it that dainty look. Be sure to click on the page link at the bottom if you want to learn more about chalk painting or get the super easy recipe. (It is WAY cheaper than buying chalk paint but there are links to some supplies on that page if you so desire) The beauty of chalk paint is not only how it looks, but the fact that you don’t have to sand everything down before painting. 

There are still a few important steps to make sure the paint job looks nice. The first is making sure there aren’t any sticky substances on the surfaces. I use goof-off to take off anything that may be stuck to the surface and then wipe down the surface with a damp towel to make sure the oil is off. Next I take off the hardware and set it aside. Finally, I spray down the whole piece with a wood primer. There are tons of primers to choose from  depending upon the type of surface you are working with. If I plan to distress the piece, I choose a primer color that compliments the color I will be painting the piece.  I didn’t distress this piece initially so I won’t go into that here but be sure to check out the post below for more details about chalk painting.

Chalk Full of Paint Ideas

If you are interested in the cute pink tools I have pictured here you can buy them at the links below. I have had mine for just a short time now but so far I am very happy with the quality.

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