Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Amish Baked Oatmeal

Yum. This breakfast is reminiscent of college for me. I am sure if any of my roommates read this they will probably remember it. I discovered this recipe in a cookbook my grandma gave me for my birthday and it is so delicious! If you love oatmeal and strawberries you will love this. I often make it for weekday breakfasts since it is super easy to make then can just bake for 20-30 minutes while you get ready. Jordan, who is not a fan of oatmeal, loves this and it is something we can enjoy together (since he is crazy and doesn't enjoy 90% of breakfast foods. I know, who did I marry?!) Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day so I appreciate this. I am making it for the staff team's brekky (breakfast) on Friday so we'll see what they think!

PS: Jess, if you read this, it is originally from a B&B in Lancaster, PA. :)

Amish Baked Oatmeal

  • 1-1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Warm milk (you can add a bit of cinnamon and that tastes great too!)
  • Fresh fruit (raspberries or diced strawberries work the best) and/or brown sugar, optional

  • Combine the first eight ingredients; mix well. Spread evenly in a greased 13-in. x 9-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 25-30 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Immediately spoon into bowls; add warm milk. Top with fruit and/or brown sugar if desired. Serves 4-6. (usually 4 for us!)
Source: Taste of Home

Monday, March 21, 2011


One of the most restful, relaxing days since I have been here has been at a beach called Torquay. It is absolutely beautiful, the gateway to the Great Ocean Road, and such a nice place to get away for the day at just a 1.5 hour drive. We took the Spring Break girls here on our last day with them and they loved it too.

I have been trying to learn more about what it means to rest, for me specifically.

"Thus says the Lord: 'Stand by the roads, and look, and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way is; and walk in it, and find rest for your souls.'" Jeremiah 6:6

I think I have always thought a good day of rest was one in which I spent lots of time laying around, probably watching lots of tv or reading a good book, maybe taking a nap. While these things are occasionally really restorative rest for me, more often they are not. As we studied some verses about rest in our staff devotional last week, I hunted for a few more, and this one stuck out to me just because it is so active, but still restful. He is walking the good path and finding rest along the way.

"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28

So when we went to Torquay, I was desperately in need of REST. That week had been not only one of the most physically draining, but also spiritually I felt used up and tired. I worked straight from Wednesday morning until Friday late at night with only breaks to sleep. Seriously, it was bad. When I got to Saturday morning, I was dreading the whole day of "work" taking the spring break on a sight-seeing day and just entertaining them. I thought it would be draining when I was looking ahead to a packed Sunday and then another work week starting...without a weekend.
When we got out of the car and walked up over this hill to the beach, I was literally just PRAISING the Lord for rest that it gave my soul. I was able to take a walk and just process and think about how I was doing and what God was trying to teach me through these periods of work without rest. Then I just soaked in the views and it proved to be a truly restorative day and Sunday ended up being great too even though I figured I would be super tired. God can restore us so well through his beauty, through HIM, can't he?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spicy Mango Shrimp with Coconut-Lime Rice

One thing I really miss from America and my life there is the arrival of my Southern Living magazine each month! I probably miss it more than usual since my current residence is in a very non-southern city. It's just completely different. Anyway, my lovely mom sent me the February issue in a box filled with other American goodies, including our favorite cereal "Oh's." You must enjoy some for us this month for breakfast. Delicious!

This recipe was one of the ones in the February issue. It looked really healthy and I already had shrimp, so I went for it! Unfortunately, when I got to the fruit stand, I found that mangoes were "out of season." What!? This simply does not happen in America. Each time I have ever wanted a mango or anything else for that matter, it has just been there...I hadn't even known before when mango season was! (It is a summer fruit, I now know, and go figure summer is rapidly leaving us here in the Southern Hemisphere.) So I opted for pineapple, and I have to say it was a nice substitute. I suppose if I made it again, and had access to mangoes, I would use them, but I would probably miss the pineapple flavor. Plus then I had the rest of the pineapple already cut up to enjoy!

We found this to be much better than it even looked. Jordan and I both really loved the coconut on top and so used a lot of it! It had that nice sweet and salty combination going on. Don't leave it out if you make this!

Spicy Mango Shrimp with Coconut-Lime Rice


  • 1 cup light coconut milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups uncooked jasmine rice
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    • 1 1/2 pounds peeled, large raw shrimp (1 6/20 count)
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
    • 1 cup chopped green onions
    • 1 cup diced red bell pepper
      • 2 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
    • 1/2 to 1 tsp. dried crushed red pepper
    • 1 cup chopped fresh mango
    • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
    • 1/4 cup soy sauce
    • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
    • Topping: toasted sweetened flaked coconut


1. Prepare Coconut-Lime Rice.

Bring coconut milk, salt, and 2 cups water to a boil in a saucepan over medium heat. Stir in rice; cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching, 20 to 25 minutes or until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender. Stir in lime zest and juice.

2. Meanwhile, sauté half of shrimp in 1 Tbsp. hot oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat 2 to 3 minutes or just until shrimp turn pink. Remove shrimp from skillet. Repeat procedure with 1 Tbsp. hot oil and remaining shrimp.

3. Sauté onions and next 4 ingredients in remaining 1 Tbsp. hot oil over medium-high heat 1 minute. Stir in mango and next 3 ingredients, and cook 1 minute; stir in shrimp. Serve over hot cooked Coconut-Lime Rice; top with toasted coconut.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Aussie words

Since I arrived here 2 months ago (crazy that it's already been so long!!!), I've been keeping a list of words in my journal that are different from "American" English words. Some of them are fitting and I think some are just ridiculous and I feel so funny saying them, but whatever!

arvo = afternoon
costume/cozzie = bathing suit
tall boy = dresser
holiday = vacation
good on ya = good job
how are you going = what's up (i've actually started saying this without effort!!)
i'm going to do wash = i'm going to wash the clothes
biscuit = cookie
cordial = kool-aid
rubbish = trash
bin = trash can
suss it out = feel it out
trolley = shopping cart
flat white = cafe au lait
Macca's = McDonald's
sanga = sandwich
paddle pop = popsicle
ta = thank you (this one I cannot get used to!!)
cheers = bye, thanks, etc. (don't exactly know but they say it all the time)
jumper = sweater
sunnies = sunglasses
key volunteer = student leader
diary = planner/agenda
straight away = immediately (I've started saying this one lots too!)
capsicum = pepper (red capsicum = red pepper)
serviettes = napkins
nappy = diaper
bun = roll
mozzie bite = mosquito bite
uni = college
college = dorm
heaps = lots

There are lots more but just thought you may like learning about my new vocab words! :)

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


I read this book called "Jesus Calling" almost every day. It's by Sarah Young if you want to get it. I started reading it just to have a moment at the beginning of my day apart from scripture to allow Jesus to speak truth and peace and calming words into my life (and especially that day) to help me to relax and avoid anxiety. Each entry is really simple, spoken to us from Jesus' point of view. More than once God has used this book to comfort me, encourage me, and remind me that my true aim in life is HIM not ministry, or possessions, or happiness. It's HIM. So I really loved the one from today...thought you may also!

"Rest in my radiant presence. The world around you seems to spin faster and faster, till everything is a blur. Yet there is a cushion of calm at the center of your life, where you live in union with Me. Return to this soothing Center as often as you can, for this is where you are energized: filled with My Love, Joy, and Peace.

"The world is a needy place; do not go there for sustenance. Instead, come to Me. Learn to depend on Me alone, and your weaknesses will become saturated with My Power. When you find your completeness in Me, you can help other people without using them to meet your own needs. Life in the Light of My Presence, and your light will shine brightly into the lives of others."

Galatians 5:22; 1 John 4:12