Announcing the Launch of Joshua’s Blog!

Watch this amazing trailer.

Friends, you don’t want to miss following my brother Joshua’s new blog. I promise, every post will be worth reading and you will be challenged and inspired! The end.

Ok, I can’t stop with that. I just have to brag on my amazing brother a little bit. He really is an incredible man, with a passion for the truth.

Joshua’s mission:

“Inspiring and equipping Christians to know, live, and speak the truth.”

Josh will post valuable content on relevant issues.

He will say the hard things from his heart.

He won’t sugarcoat the issue or tiptoe around the rosebush.

I know these things, because he’s my brother and I lived with him for 20 years, and now travel and work with him in our family’s music ministry.

Joshua has a gift of saying what needs to be said in a bold yet gracious way.

His heart throbs with a passion to honor Jesus in everything he does, and to equip other Christians to live radically for Jesus. He wants to see Christians influencing culture for our King. He wants to see families making a difference. He wants to see young people rising above the status quo.

If you are a follower of Jesus, you will be blessed by subscribing to Joshua’s blog.

I plan to read every single post, and I hope you’ll join me!

I’m proud of Joshua, not because he’s starting a blog (although I think that’s awesome!) but because he is a man of integrity, vision, and purpose.

Cassidy, Joshua’s amazing wife- who filmed and edited the blog trailer- will be helping him run the blog as well. They’re a power team!

Head over to Joshua’s blog to read the first post!

-Allison

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The Perfect Gluten Free Biscotti Recipe

As promised, today I am sharing the Perfect Gluten Free Biscotti Recipe. I got so many requests for the recipe when I posted pictures the other day on Instagram that I promised to share it with my friends on here. I absolutely love these biscotti, because they are so gourmet, incredibly delicious, and you won’t even miss the sugar or gluten! Disclaimer: I adapted these biscotti from my talented friend’s recipe.

Without further ado, here you have it:

Gluten Free Biscotti

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup coconut sugar (I love this brand) and it’s is a super deal for coconut sugar!) or zylitol Note: If you don’t have either of these or don’t care about making them sugar free, you can use regular sugar.

1/2 cup honey (or sugar if you aren’t going for sugar free)

6 eggs

2 TBS hot water

2 tsp. vanilla or almond extract (or 1 tsp. of each)

3 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt (I like this kind)

5 1/2 cups flour (I used my homemade flour mix, but you could use about anything. Even plain ground oats and a little xanthum gum would work. Just make sure to check the ingredients if you use a boughten gluten free baking mix- some already contain baking powder/soda and salt.) Note: If you want to buy a mix, I highly recommend Pamelas, available here and Namaste, available here.

3/4 cup chopped pecans

3/4 cup craisins

Cream butter and sweeteners. Add eggs one at time, mixing after each addition. Stir in vanilla and hot water. Mix in remaining ingredients.

Roll the dough into two logs. If it’s your first time making biscotti, you may want to look up step by step instructions. Clarita has awesome instructions here. I used greased parchment paper to form the logs, then flip them out onto a greased cookie sheet.

Bake the biscotti for half an hour at 300 degrees, or till firm. Take from the oven, cool slightly, and slice. Separate the slices (so they aren’t touching) and return to the oven at 200 degrees till they are as crispy as you desire. Traditionally, biscotti are very firm, and you eat them with a hot drink, dipping to soften. I love them that way, but last time I made them slightly less firm, and they were really delicious like that, and still yummy if eaten by themselves and not with tea or coffee. My sweet dad commented that he liked how I made them “not so hard”. So basically, you can just bake them till they’re however hard you want them. They really are delicious no matter what, except burnt!:)

When baking is completed, let the biscotti cool. Drizzle with dark chocolate if desired.

Store in a container on the counter…..and watch them disappear!

Variation: You can change the flavor by adding chocolate chips and almonds instead of pecans and craisins, etc. 

Note: This makes a pretty big batch. You can halve it if you want, but if have extra, these do make excellent gifts!

Ps. This post contains affiliate links; please view my full disclosure here

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My 2018 Goals

My 2018 goals have been a journey. Usually I just jot down goals for the year and go with it, but for some reason this time around was different. I started back in December and kept coming back, dreaming bigger, refining the purpose + vision being birthed in my heart for this year.

The goals that made it through the refining process to the “final 10” are all ones that I believe will be extremely valuable as I seek to grow and use this life for the glory of God.

This is pretty personal, but I feel led to share in hopes that you will be encouraged to set some scary, life changing goals as well.

“If you aren’t going forward, you’re going backwards.”

My 2018 Goals:

Habits

  1. Schedule a time of fasting weekly
  2. Practice unplugged evenings
  3. Plan undistracted times for relationships + rest

Achievements

  1. Learn to study the Word of God instead of merely reading it
  2. Run 8 miles straight
  3. Do 2 items from my Bucket List per month
  4. Practice wise stewardship by sticking to my budget and meeting my income/saving/investing goals

People

  1. Intentionally invest in my team members thru encouragement, incentives, education, and empathy
  2. Go all out in serving my family
  3. Learn to better honor and communicate with my parents as an adult living at home

Obviously some of these goals encompass more, like the Stewardship and Bucket List ones. I have several separate financial goals that I lumped together, and the bucket list contains alot of random things related to personal travel, work, family, education, etc. It is a fun way, apart from my “Big 10” goals, to have a running list of things I want to do.

Additionally, in the coming months, I plan to share more about each goal and practical steps I am taking to accomplish them.

What about you?  What goal are you setting this year that really scares you (like I wrote about here)? Is there a particular goal you are most excited about? I’d love to hear!I’m cheerin’ for you!

Allison

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How I Make My Yearly Goals

Happy New Years to all of you!

A new year is always like a fresh page, and this year especially, I am so excited for the days ahead. My heart is fairly bursting with fresh ideas, new dreams, and open doors. 

I am looking forward to sharing my 2018 goals next week, and I plan to continue posting on goals and productivity occasionally throughout the year.

I had a lot of feedback from my readers saying that you all seem to enjoy those posts. I guess it makes sense- I always love to hear about others’ goals and how they prioritize their time.  We all have the same amount of time, but there are so many ways to use that time!

Today I wanted to share just a few thoughts from my goal making progress:

1. Make your goals measurable.

This is really huge. Don’t set vague goals such as “get in shape”. You may want to get more in shape, but what does that mean to you? Set a very specific goal such as “run 12 miles per week” or “lose 10 pounds” or “workout 3 times per week”.

2. Set 10 or less goals.

Everyone is different. If you haven’t done much goal setting in the past, or if you like things to be simple, you may want to start with 2 or 3 goals. Even for a visionary or long time goal setter, more than 10 goals is going to be a lot to manage, track, and remember.

3. Take a risk!

Your goals should scare you! Don’t make goals that are all easy to achieve. I recommend having at least 1 or 2 goals that look really scary to you! As I will share next week, I have a few goals that make me quiver in my boots- in a good way! But I want it that way. If they were all easy and comfortable, it would be pointless. Most of the growth in our lives happens outside of our comfort zone.

4. Choose a mixture of goals.

I don’t want all my goals to be fitness and financial, although I definitely want to work hard in those areas. If you want to be a well rounded individual, it seems reasonable to set a variety of well-rounded goals that will help you become more of the person you want to be this year.

I would love to hear from you! Do you set goals? 

much love,

Allison

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Twas the Week Before the Wedding

Twas the week before the wedding…….oh what a week! So many feelings these days. So many good times. I want to share with you a few pictures, memories, and thoughts from some of these last days before Chelsy gets married, moves out, and begins her new life in Kansas.

Our family has been blessed to be all together quite a few times lately, and we treasure every one of those memories. Of course, we will all have many more good times together after Chels is married, both without her and when she and John come back to visit, but these days of everyone (four households) living within ten minutes, and getting together without anyone missing, and all that…..well it’s going to be different once Chelsy moves away.

Chels made soft pretzels for us “one last time” before she leaves. They were as yummy as ever. Oh, how we do love that girl’s cooking! John will definitely be eating well.:)

So many people have been asking how I feel about it all…..my sister and best friend moving away, and all that. That is another post for another time (and I do promise to share more later), but for now suffice it to say that I am soaking up these last days living under the same roof with her, having all the married siblings living within 10 minutes of the home place, all going to the same church, etc. Times are changing, but it is good change, prayed for, and really one of the very best things that’s happened in my entire life! I can’t tell you how happy I am for my dear sis to be marrying such a good, good man who she fits so perfectly. God is good.

It’s been said that,

“If you want to know how rich you are, find out how many things you have that money cannot buy.”

The past week- Christmas season + the last days before my dearest older sister gets married and moves out of state- has been a time of realizing how very, very rich I really am. Like the quote says, “in things money cannot buy.” Money can’t buy big happy family dinners, or close family relationships, or a peaceful home, or siblings who are best friends, or a loving church family, or good friendships.

This tribe…….no matter how far any of us move, our hearts will always be close. There is much to hold us together:

The memories we share, and the ones we have still to make.

The way we were together so much growing up– school together, Sundays together, family meals together, play time together, field trips together, music together.

The love we all have for the same Heavenly Father. 

The individual differences we celebrate– extroverts and introverts, classical music lovers and bluegrass music lovers, organizers and mess makers, coffee drinkers and tea drinkers (and the 3rd class of hot chocolate, with our cultured sis in loves bringing new drinks of chai and boba:), gluten eaters and gluten free-ers, spenders and savers, and so on and so forth.

The little idiosyncrasies we all share– throwing dinner rolls + potatoes + ketchup bottles at the table (it’s like eating at Lamberts every day!), speaking our minds (sometimes too freely), the strong love for all things dairy (bring on the butter!!!), our abhorrence of “substitutes” and certain packaged foods, that habit of losing sunglasses, drowning our chocolate cake in milk, a love of good deals, the need to go without a coat (for all males at all times of year), that terrible tendency to be late, and the list goes on and on.

 

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