Friday, May 22, 2015

THM Lemon Bar Recipe

                Lemon bars –  THM  - S

1 C almond flour
1 stick butter
1\2 C nuts
Crumble and press in 9x13 pan bake 12 min. at 375. Cool
Second layer:
8 OZ Cream cheese
1 C Cool whip (See below for recipe)
1/3 C Sweet Blend
Mix together and spread on crust.

Lemon Custard:
16 egg yolks beaten until lemon colored and thick – a submersible blender will speed this up.
Slowly add 1\3 C Sweet Blend
Add grated rind and juice of 4 Lemons
Cook in a double boiler until thick. Cool
Spread over second layer cover with last of the Cool whip. You can use a piping bag to add the cool whip on top.

Cool Whip:
1\4 C water
1 tea unflavored gelatin
1\2 tea cream of tartar
1 3\4 C heavy whipping cream
3 tea Sweet Blend
1 tea vanilla

Mix 1 Tbl whipping cream with cream of tartar until there are no lumps. Put into stand mixer, or large bowl. Add the rest of the whipping cream and the SB. Use whisk attachment or hand mixer. Whisk until mixture begins to thicken slightly.
While the above is mixing; Pour water into small saucepan and sprinkle gelatin over the top, let set for 2-3 minutes. Place pan over medium-low heat and stir until gelatin dissolves. Remove from heat and let cool (2 min was all this took).
Slowly pour gelatin-water into the cream while continually mixing. Add vanilla.
Continue to mix until the cream is thick and smooth. You know, like cool whip

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Who am I

Who does God say that I am? How do I teach my children who they are in Christ?

I’ve come to understand that knowing what God says about who I am and receiving those truths are two different things. I have to believe that God isn’t lying when He says things about me. However, my opinion of myself is usually contrary to what God’s view is. So that begs the question: Do I really believe God and trust what He says?

Receiving the truth about who I am in Christ is much like choosing to receive salvation. I was learning to receive these truths just before Christmas. As I walked down a tough path of humbling I wanted to find a way to teach my kids this lesson. You know the easy way, as opposed to the hard way that I was learning. I had an idea that I tried with them. I took the “HELLO MY NAME IS” name tags and wrote one truth on each along with the reference. I stuck the name tags on their Christmas presents. I had each child read the name tag on their wrapped presents. They then had to choose to receive the gift before they could open it. It might be a little corny, but the older two (13 and 15) enjoyed it. They even kept the name tags stuck to the wrapping paper. I also made one name tag that had personal truths about each child, made by my observations of them.

My eldest saw what I was doing before Christmas and she asked to have a few of the name tags. She wrote personal notes of encouragement for her grandparents and put them on her gifts to them.

This idea was partly inspired by this song:

So Here were some of the names that I included:


     Child of the one true king John 1:12

(My kids immediately recognized this one from the song.)


     Joint-heir with Christ, sharing His inheritance with Him. Rom 8:17


     Chosen and dearly loved by God. 1 Thes 1:4

If you are interested in learning more about who God is through the Old Testament, I’ve written The Presence of Shadows. This book is the first in a young adult fantasy series in which I dramatize the lives and event of the Kings and prophets of Israel. Dive into the world of Ta-Val and take a journey with Brehane as he decides who to trust.
Find out more about The Presence of Shadows Here
Want to read more of my blog posts? Visit my personal blog Kara's Blog

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Have You Found Heaven?

Nothing is standing in your way, but you.

Moses stopped mid step. Voices drifted around the tent he’d been about to pass. Apprehension crawled up his arms like spiders. He peeked around the edge of the tent and saw Deuel and Gameliel.

“Can you believe it?,” demanded Deuel. “Why won’t God and Moses give us anything but this flaky manna to eat? It gets stuck in my dry throat and coats my swollen tongue. Is it too much to ask for some decent food and water?”

Gameliel nodded his agreement. He wrinkled his forehead. “I’m sick and tired of it too.” Sweat trickled down his brow. “You would think that with this many men, God would give us a competent leader.

If only this was the one time he’d heard that complaint this week, but rumbling discontent rolled through the camp. He clenched his hands into fists. Frustration forced his heart to speed up. Would these people ever stop complaining? He was trying, really trying to lead them as he trusted God to show him the way. They just couldn’t seem to be happy for very long. How would God respond to this new onslaught of whining? He might have to convince God not to wipe them off the face of the earth . . . again.

Rustling in the bushes beside him drew his attention. A shiny black snake flashed past the toe of his sandal. Moses jerked his foot back. His heart raced. That was a mole viper. Its fangs contained the liquid of death. And that particular snake was not small. Moses wiped his sweaty palms on his tunic and swallowed hard.

A scream punctured the air. Moses ran around the tent. Deuel lay writhing in the dirt. “It bit me!” His voice crackled with terror. He gripped his chest. His nails scratched and caught at his tunic. The old cloth tore beneath his grip. “Burns . . .” he gasped, “It burns.” He drew in ragged breaths.

Gameliel just stared at the man before him. His mouth was open in shock and his hands shook. Moses squatted beside Deuel.

“It flashed past me and bit Deuel in the thigh, then disappeared into the bushes over there.” Gaeliel’s shaking finger pointed to his right. He looked at Moses. His dark eyes were large with fear. “W-what should we do?”

Moses ran his hand over his hair and exhaled. Another scream filled the air, then another, and another. “I don’t know,” Moses turned in a circle and watched as the camp erupted into a flurry of activity. Men and women ran to him. Many nearly stomped on the prone Deuel before they stopped.

The people cried to Moses, ‘Please,” they pleaded, “We have complained against you and God.” Many threw themselves at Moses’s feet, their faces pressed into the dirt. “Pray for us,” they begged. “Pray that God will remove the snakes.”

Moses looked above their heads and saw the quick movement of black snakes writhing among the tents. Many coiled and struck as he watched. He looked back to the people, nodded, and ran toward the tabernacle. The hot sun burned his back as he ran. It seemed much hotter than a few moments ago.

Moses prayed fervently. These people could get on his nerves so easily, but he didn’t want any harm to come to them. And then God spoke. If the people were to be saved, Moses had a task before him. The screams seeped through the thick fabric of the tabernacle and Moses jumped to his feet. He ran to the closets metal worker’s tent, grabbed tools, and demanded, “Gather enough bronze to make a snake about so big.” He held his hand out to show the width and then the height. The smith stuttered and then ran to obey.

Hours later, Moses lifted a staff up. Gleaming on the top of it sat a coiled bronze snake. Moses walked slower than he wished, but he was exhausted. He carried the pole to the center of the camp and thrust it forcefully into the ground. It sank in easier than he thought it would. When he let go of the pole, the snake quivered atop it, then stood still like a standard of war.

The people around him gaped at the bronze snake, then turned questioning eyes to him.

Moses pointed to the snake, “If someone is bitten, he may come here and look at the snake, and God will heal him. He will live. Spread the word through camp.”

Moses wobbled on tired legs. Joshua rushed to him and draped Moses arm over his shoulder. “Come,” he spoke softly, “you must rest.”

Moses frowned. “Who will make sure they look upon the snake.”

Joshua quirked one side of his mouth in a half grin, “I think that’s rather the point, each person must decide if he is willing to look upon the statue and live.” He craned his neck to look Moses in the eye, “Do you think God wants us to be forced into salvation, or does He want us to choose it?”

Moses grunted and nodded in assent. The deaths of those who would not look upon the standard weighed heavily on his heart. He had led these people for a long time and knew that some would rather die than submit to God’s simple plan.

Sure enough, as he walked through the camp he heard angry shouts. Family members physically dragged loved ones, who weakly fought them, toward the center of camp.

One man stood in front of his tent, jumped and grabbed the back of his leg. A shinny mole viper rushed beneath his upraised leg and toward another tent. The man gritted his teeth and looked at Moses. Anger and resentment made his eyes harsh and ugly. He shook his fist at Moses, “This is your fault, I will not look at a stupid bronze snake!” He turned on his good leg and entered his tent.

What about you? Have you looked upon Jesus and found salvation?

John 3:14-15 “As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that whoever believes will in Him have eternal life.” NASB

Don’t let the poison of sin take you into eternal death and torment. All you must do is look to Jesus. He is the only way to find eternal life. He paid the ultimate price, by dying for your infractions. Better yet, He even beat death when He rose, alive three days later. Is it really too much to ask that you acknowledge your rebellion against God and then thank Jesus for serving your sentence?

 If you have taken the first look at your savior and gained eternal life, have you chosen to surrender everything to Him? Your plans, health, spouse, children, control. Isn’t it strange that we have to surrender something that we never really had? Control is something that we don’t have now and never have had, yet we cling to the illusion with teeth bared and fists clenched. I confess that I get a little annoyed that I have to surrender these things day by day and moment by moment, repeatedly, but is our Lord asking too much? I don’t think so. Will you join with me today in surrendering our deepest hurts, fears, joys, worries, what if’s and the illusion of control?

I think today is going to be FANTASTIC.

This was a dramatization of Numbers 21:4-9

If you enjoy learning through fiction, you will be blessed through my book The Presence of Shadows. It’s a young adult fantasy, however many adults have found it enjoyable. Why not strengthen the pre-teens and teens in your life with a greater understanding of Old Testament history? Watch as they fall in love with God through His word.
I invite you to dive into the world of Ta-Val and take a journey with Brehane as he decides who to trust. Do you like the dramatization above? In The Presence of Shadows I dramatize the lives and event of the Kings and prophets of Israel. It is the first book in the Chronicles of Kings and Dragons series.

Find out more about The Presence of Shadows Here

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

What’s So Special About The City Of Hebron?


 You may have heard of it before. It might ring some distant memory, but you’re not sure why. This city happens to be rather important. It’s just a little harder to find out the reasons it’s important. There is no concise paragraph in the Bible telling us all about Hebron. You have to dig in and find little snippets to put together a full understanding of its importance.

Allow me to lead you through the Bible to discover Hebron. There will be several references that we will explore.

Gen 13:18

     After Abraham separated from Lot, he settle in Hebron and built an alter there.

Gen 23:2, 17-20

     Sarah died in Hebron and Abraham purchased a field  from Ephron. In the field was a cave that Abraham used as a family tomb, and buried Sarah there.

Gen 35:27

     When Abraham died, he was buried in the cave with his wife.

Joshua 14:13

     Joshua gave Hebron to Caleb, the other faithful spy, as his inheritance. It was given to him “because he followed the LORD God of Israel fully.” Before the city was Hebron, it was called Kiriath-arba. Arba was the greatest man among the Anakim. 21:11 says that Arba was the father of the Anak.

Now I find the Anakim fascinating and more than just a little hard to understand.

Numbers 13:28 Is part of the report given to Israel by the twelve spies. They said that the people are strong and the cities are fortified and large. You can almost hear their exasperation when they exclaim, “We even saw the sons of Anak. They are huge!” (My paraphrase)

It is the origin of the Anakim that I have no idea what to think about.
 Numbers 13:33 Is still part of the spies report. They said that they saw the Nephilim, whom the sons of Anak are part of. They compared themselves to grasshoppers next to the Nephilim. Seeming to indicate that these were the giants in the land. 

Now the Nephilim are mentioned, by that name, only one other place in the Bible. I think that this is one of the most bizarre events int he Bible, and I write fantasy. Gen 6:4 I’m just going to quote it here: “The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.” NASB 

Go ahead and say it, “What?!” Exactly. When I studied Gen. our group discussed this and came to no conclusion. I mean, how is that even physically possible? We discussed the theories, and I don’t think we can say how it happened. It’s one those things that we may not ever understand. And really when you think about it, do you really want to know? Gives me shivers up my spine.

Joshua 21:8-13

     Here we are told that the actual city was given to Aaron’s sons and one of the families of the Kohathites, all sons of Levi. But the fields of the city and its villages were given to Caleb. Aaron made Hebron a city of refuge. A city of refuge was a safe place to run to if you accidentally killed someone. If you made it to a city of refuge before the victim’s family found and killed you, you would have to state your case to the elders of the city and they would take you in and give you a place to live. If the family tracked you to a city of refuge, the elders would not hand you over to them. Nice to know if you’re ever in a tight spot.

2 Sam. 2:1, 11

     When Saul died, the kingdom of Israel was split. God had chosen David as the next king, but Abner, Saul’s general put Saul’s son, Ish-bosheth, on the throne in Gibeon. However, the tribe of Judah anointed David king and he ruled over them for seven and a half years. David ruled from Hebron.

It helps to know the significance of the city that David ruled from. Hebron was an interesting city to say the least. While it’s not a city we talk about much, it sure played a big role in the establishment of Israel as a nation.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Young Adult Fantasy, The Presence of Shadows is Avaliable on Paper Back now! Great Easter Gift.

Is now available in paper back, and eBook.

This would make a great Easter gift for young adults that might be too old for an Easter basket. I do recommend throwing in some chocolate beside the book. No one ever outgrows chocolate.

Click below to pick up your copy.
Paper Back

Monday, April 14, 2014

My Kids Aren't the Only Ones that Complain About Food.

Today I was reading Numbers chapter 11. I have to say that I was "feeling" Moses. The people are complaining because all they have to eat is manna. Does that sound familiar to anyone? My adopted daughter exclaims, "I don't like that." almost every night at dinner. It doesn't matter if she ate a bunch of the same meal last time I made it. She must complain about the meal every night.

Well here is Moses and the people really want meat, in fact they are reminiscing about all of the scrumptious food they had in Egypt. However, God knows they are really complaining about His provision for them, and He is more than just a little upset with their attitudes. In fact, "the fire of the LORD burned among them and consumed some of the outskirts of the camp."

Go ahead mom, pat yourself on the back. You may have over reacted once or twice to your child's complaints, but at least you didn't set their room on fire! That being said, God is God and He has the right to set the camp on fire if He wants to. I guess this does justify our hurt and anger.

Now here is where I start to feel Moses. The people keep whining at him and this is what he says to God. (My paraphrase) "What did I ever do to deserve this?" Yes, I've asked God that too. Moses says, "Are you unhappy with me, God? I didn't even conceive these people, nor was I there when they were born and were infants." Now that definitely applies to an adopted child. Although, I don't think I've ever brought that up in my conversations with God, but it made me laugh that Moses did.

God's response is to have Moses find 70 elders that will help him bear the "burden" i.e. the peoples complaints. I'd like to have 70 other people to send my kids to for the purpose of complaining. Sigh. Anyway, God then sends these ungrateful people quail. He tells Moses that He will give them meat for a whole month. I love God's response when Mosses tries to point out the enormous undertaking it will be to feed 600,000 people. In verse 23 God says, "Is the LORD's power limited? Now you shall see whether My word will come true for you or not." Yep, I need that reminder often too. And man, does He send the quail. They fell beside the camp as far away from it as a days journey in at least two directions. And not only are the quail that far out from camp, but they are three feet deep. Imagine wading through that. Kind of like walking through your teenagers room, except that it's birds and not clothes or something gross.

Now here is something else that I can relate too, even though my daughter complains about what is being served, she manages to push her way past everyone else in the family to be the first one served. She would like to insist that she be served first every time. I find that kind of greedy. Well, the Israelites did the same thing. They went "hog wild" on all of those quail and gathered so much that, you guessed it, God was angry again. I get it, I really do. So instead of fire, God sends a severe plague. Some days that sounds like a great idea! It's nice to know that our father in heaven understands exactly how frustrated we are.

Friday, April 11, 2014

New eBook Released

My debut novel The Presence of Shadows is now available on Kindle! Pick up your own copy  On Amazon

Read the first chapter for FREE on my web site:

The paper back release date is next Tues. April 15th.