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Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Basket Of Love Breakfast Sampler

Looking for a fun and delicious yet super easy breakfast to make for Valentine's Day (or any day)? Look no further than this Basket Of Love Breakfast Sampler! Loaded with sweet french toast, delicious eggs, crisp toast and salty ham this breakfast is sure to be a people pleaser. 

French Toast, Ham, Eggs In A Basket

What You Need:

Heart Shaped Cookie Cutter


Slice of bread ( I used Homemade French find the recipe here)
Sliced Ham
Free Range Eggs
Dropper Full of Stevia
Grass-fed Butter

Related Article: St. Patrick's Day Breakfast


Using the cookie cutter cut out the center of the bread, butter both sides and place in a skillet. Once the pan is hot, crack an egg and pour into the center of the bread. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until done to your preference, flip and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Related Article: Valentine Envelope Treats

In a bowl mix one egg, a splash of milk, cinnamon, vanilla, and stevia, whisk until combined. Take the bread hearts and dip each into the egg mix on both sides. Immediately place in a hot pan with butter. Cook until golden on each side. Plate and serve.

Cut ham slices with a cookie cutter, place in pan with butter, cook until warm.


Monday, January 29, 2018

He is Friendship...

I'm not sure what to write today...

Not sure what words to type across this page to encourage someone else, I stare at the blinking cursor waiting for me write. 

My heart aches, I feel dried up, spent, tired oh so tired. I ache to help a hurting friend- but the truth is there is nothing I can do. Only He can wrap His arms around her and pull back the broken pieces of her heart. Only He can make beautiful the broken ugly places. Not me. 

I find my thoughts lingering around prayers for her, always coming back to them like the sound of a baby crying draws you from sleep. They pull me away from the world of work and to-do lists until I quietly find myself here, in the window seat watching the birds flit back and forth to the feeder and a squirrel wander through the garden perhaps looking for some patch of color to brighten it's dreary winter days. 

Everything in me wants to storm the walls that surround her, tear them down piece by piece, draw her back to the world of the living. But the walls are too high, the gates fused together their hinges rusted. Brambles grow high around the wall to keep out all who dare to harm- and yet she is her prison keeper. 

Lord be a friend to her, draw her from her walls. Teach her to live again. Show her that no tunnel is so dark that your light can't be found at the end. Show her the lies the devil has whispered to her heart, awaken a fire in her to rise and fight back. 

You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. 1 John 4:4 NIV

I've found in our utter weakness, in my pain and sorrow in my brokenness He shines through like never before. As if the threadbare places can barely contain His goodness because He is good. Never changing, when the whole world spins wildly out of control. In my uncertainty He is my rock, never moving or swaying, He's my constant. He's the lighthouse in the midst of my storm when all I can see is the waves coming to swallow me. 

but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31 NIV
We've found ourselves making some huge life-changing decisions lately (aren't they all really?). Some of them have left me feeling like I just plunged into a stormy sea- battered, terrified, lonely so many different emotions mixed into one unexplainable mass. And yet He is there when the panic begins to rise. He illuminates just the step before me, not the whole path just one small step. Like a small exercising of Faith, perhaps He knows that the entire path would overwhelm me and all I can handle is just one step. It's teaching me to live in the moment, waiting with Him instead of dashing ahead on my own.
"When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched, Nor will the flame burn you. "For I am the LORD your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior Isaiah 43:2 NASB

Perhaps uncharted is the best way to explain this month and the many to come. Uncharted, learning to sway with Him, wherever He leads. Like a dance, you aren't sure of the steps yet. Following to places you never expected, terrified and strangely exhilarated like the moment before the roller coaster takes off. Something tells you to get off while you can, but something tells you to stay where you are because the ride will be so worth it.

Scripture quotations marked (NIV) are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

"Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission."


Friday, January 26, 2018

A Refuge Assured Book Review

We are blessed to receive the publisher's advanced copies of books for review for our honest opinion and then share them with you our friends. We just finished the pre-release copy of A Refuge Assured
by the amazing Jocelyn Green author of Faith Deployed: Daily Encouragement for Military Wives and The 5 Love Languages Military Edition as well as many others.

A Refuge Assured is a tale that drops you in France just in time for the Revolution. It introduces you to our players in this story as it carefully weaves the chaos of 1792 Paris into its backdrop. A terrible time filled with terror, and hunger and death. Meet the lovely Vivienne lacemaker to the Queen, Marie Antoinette herself at a time when even making lace can make you lose your head!

Related Article: A Note Yet Unsung Book Review

Follow her story that also touches on the amazing novel

"The Lacemaker" by the wonderful author Laura Frantz.

These characters are believable and likable (or easy to despise in the case of the bad guys). Feel the terror of this young woman as she struggles to survive the chaos and the blood-soaked cobblestone streets of Paris and find a way to live on.

We recommend this book highly to you!

Click below to purchase 

A Refuge Assured

Click below to purchase 

The Lacemaker 

We were given these books for free for our honest opinion. 

This post contains affiliate links. Affiliate links help to provide an income for this blog and helps us to bring the Rosevine Cottage Girls articles to you. They cost you nothing to use, but bless us so much. 


Thursday, January 25, 2018

My Dream Garden Shed Must Haves

Here at the Cottage, we spend a lot of time out in the garden. When Spring finally rolls around after months of cold weather it's like heaven, we spend hours planting seeds for the coming years garden, tending to the plants, watering and so on. Some of my earliest memories are helping plant small plants with my grandmother.

She was the queen of the garden. She loved to be out in her rose garden from dawn to dusk, even when he health declined she could be found out in the garden with us a bike basket hooked to her walker so she could pick beans. So gardening is kind our family tradition as we work together praying for the harvest to come that it will bless others as well as us. 

It may not be warm yet (in fact there is currently snow on the ground and we have been snowed in for two days) but I am dreaming of spring and hours in the garden shed. So here is my dream garden shed must haves! Click the pictures to be taken to shop.

If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. - Cicero


Related Article: Companion Planting 

Somewhere to work:

A Beautiful Garden Is A Work Of Heart

Containers to hold and organize:

What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have never been discovered. 

- Ralph Waldo Emerson

To plant a garden is to believe in tomorrow. - Audrey Hepburn

A place to hang:


Above all, I must have flowers always and always - Claude Monet


What are your dream garden shed must haves? Tell us in the comments!

This article contains affiliate links. Affiliate links cost you nothing extra but help to support the Rosevine Cottage Girls so we can continue bringing you recipes, travel posts, garden and farm posts and so much more. Recieved this book from the publisher for our honest review.

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Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Mount Baldy Fishing Trip

Probably six years ago now, my husband Doug and I took 5 small grandchildren on a fishing day trip to Mount Baldy, CA. The children ranged in age from 4 to 12 I believe 1 was 4, 2 were 5, 1 was 6 or 7 and 1 was 12 if memory serves. Were we crazy? Probably, but nevertheless, loaded all of them in our old, but trusty, 3 row Ford Expedition and headed up the mountain. The kids were full of excitement and we were too. It is wonderful having adventures with your grandchildren!

We chose Mt Baldy for their first fishing experience because over 20 years ago my husband had taken his 3 young girls on this same excursion. We also chose this location strategically. We wanted them to have success. This particular spot was family owned and consisted of small ponds versus a big lake. Doug was confident this would be much easier for them and more fun. My husband is all about fun which is why the grandkids all love him so much. Finally, we chose this spot for security. We had a lot of kiddos to keep an eye upon.

We made our way up the winding mountain road arriving about 1 ½ hours later safe and sound. From the street, it looked small and appeared that we could have easily missed it altogether so I wasn’t sure what was in store for us. Nevertheless, we poured out of the car, kids, fishing poles, and snacks, and headed for the toll booth on the side of a small, redwood painted office /cashier building. There were 3 separate ponds. One contained small fish and was closed, one had medium fish, and one large. Looking at the pricing and the rules, we found you could not throw any fish back, but had to pay if you caught one. The prices were calculated in inches based on the length of the fish. We choose the medium pond. They provided bate that looked like play dough. Doug was in charge getting the poles ready including baiting the hooks.

Related Article: Lake Elsinore

Running alone the front of the office was the medium pond. We excitedly found a spot to get settled. Doug started preparing the poles. Doug had purchased a pole for each one of the children. He had a job getting them working properly. Finally, though, the first was ready, Mia had the honors. I helped her cast the line into the water. It was an unbelievable site! Immediately the trout were almost climbing on top of each other to get the bait off of that hook. I thought they would just swim over the side of the pond onto the sidewalk they were so anxious to be caught! The water was so thick with fish, you could have almost walked across them. Needless to say, we caught a fish in about 10 seconds. The second pole wasn’t even rigged yet. We were in trouble. The same thing happened when we threw the next line in and the next and the next! Doug couldn’t work fast enough to keep all the kids occupied. These weren’t small fish and my mind was calculating the price per inch as each trout came up out of the water. This trip was going to be very expensive and would be over in 15 minutes! Eventually Doug had the great idea of loosening the drag on the line so that the kids would have more of a fight. It worked. Each fish was taking a few minutes instead of seconds! We wanted the adventure to last a couple hours at least! It was a hoot, and not a little chaotic! Especially when they wanted to try casting on their own. It is a miracle no one lost an eye. Gav did catch Mia’s headband and yanked it off. Sean caught an old rusty tractor on the others side of the fence. Sienna was bored almost immediately and went and laid on a nearby bench.

Related Article: Mission San Juan Capistrano

Doug put each catch on a stringer and put them in a pail of water. Mia kept lifting the stringer in and out of the water. Gavin was so sad and wondered why the fish had blood on its mouth. I went to look at the fish crammed into the large bucket with their heads all facing up, mouths opened. As I tried to figure how to respond to that question, I noticed something unusual in the mouth of one fish, a small green object. Looking at the next, I saw the same thing except blue. Sure enough, all of them had the same object in their mouth just different colors. I questioned out loud, “what is in their mouths?” As only Sean could, he said he gave them each a colored Gold Fish cracker! When I asked him “why?”, he replied, “I thought they were hungry!”

We packed up, paid for our fish and to our joy found they were all cleaned for us and put on ice. Yeah! Loading up we made our way back down the mountain singing and making jokes. All the parents met us at the house for a barbeque. None of the kids wanted to eat their fish. They all wanted hamburgers!

Oh well, great memories!

Debbie Pearce

Debbie lives in Southern California with her husband Doug and her children and grandchildren.


Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Hoppin' Will Recipe

This dish is a variation of Hoppin' John a traditional New Years dish, except we traded black-eyed peas for pinto beans. This dish is SOOOO good! Super easy to make, and spicy which in our book is always a plus. We served it over a bed of rice but it would be great on its own or with chips.


2 cups broth
6 cups cooked pinto beans
2 large chopped onion
3 diced tomatoes
3 cans green chilies
4 diced carrots
4 stalks of diced celery
1 package of nitrate-free spicy sausage
4 teaspoons Cajun seasoning (or to taste)

Related Article: Delishious Cornbread Recipe


Add all of the ingredients to slow cooker, cook on low for 8 hours or until done.

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Monday, January 22, 2018

Let Him Plant The Flowers

You ever feel like you are setting out, knowing you're going to fail? That may be your eyes are on the waves instead of the maker of the waves but you can't take your eyes off them? You ever feel like your heart is like a garden in winter? Muddy, colorless, stripped bare? Longing for spring and new growth.

Maybe sprouts of doubt that this was the path you were supposed to take are popping up in the furrows of your heart. Maybe the chaos of the world has covered the destination and all you can see is swirling clouds and mountains insurmountably high. Maybe you feel like you've already messed up- just a few weeks into this new year and you can't even keep it together. You've already grown weary, the journey seems discouragingly long.

You know what the hardest part of winter is for me? Waiting. Hovering. Slipping between the illusion of spring and winter. If I didn't know better it would be easy to say winter would never end, and spring will never come. But from experience, I know that winter will end, and spring will in fact come.

Look how far you've come! Look back for a moment, look back and see His promises written through the garden of your heart. Find the muddiest part of your journey and see where He planted flowers, find the dry places that He poured into until it became lush again. Look at your history.

Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Psalm 23:6
Related Article: Let Your Roots Grow

You are stronger than you ever have been before. You are wiser. You've gone farther than ever before. You've survived all the storms you've faced. You've risen every time you've fallen. You are brave. You are beautiful.

Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!” Luke 1:45

Now, look at the furrowed ground that lies before you and see the potential. See the places where new flowers will grow, see the places that you will grow this year and then focus on the one step in front of you. Stop looking at the destination, the end goal, stop feeling like you will never make it to that distant place. Climb the mountain one step, one finger, one crawl at a time. Hold the prize close to your heart but focus on only the next step. Focus on Him.

But as for me, I watch in hope for the Lord, I wait for God my Savior; my God will hear me. Micah 7:7

Hand him the tired and broken pieces, give Him the eager pieces, your hopes and dreams, and let Him plant the garden, restored and unique a picture of His unfailing love for you.

This Sunday, the pastor at my church was talking about how someone needs your walk. Your walk is an encouragement to someone around you, someone who is tired and feeling defeated and running low on faith. When you keep climbing you encourage someone else to take the next step on their own mountain.

Maybe your garden will be a piece of someone else, your walk a reflection in someone else's all pointing to the Master Gardener.


Friday, January 19, 2018

A Light On The Hill Book Review

I related to this book in a way I didn't expect...

This book plants us in the promised land of Abraham. It has been 50 years since their exodus from slavery in Egypt. Joshua and Caleb are still in control and the dividing of the land has begun to the tribes and we are dropped into Shiloh in the middle of a lush vineyard once charred by the Canaanites that lived there before and nurtured back to life by the hands of an Egyptian man who fell in love with a Israelite girl and her God and was given land by Joshua to thank him for his service to he and Caleb.

From there the story unfolds like the petals of a flower. Enter the vinters daughter Moriyah, a beautiful raven-haired girl and the life-threatening trials she must bear; captured and enslaved in Jericho. Even after she gets free she must live with the gossip the isolation and shame.

Follow this brave lady's story, her tenderness and embarrassment, her dreams and pride and how it shapes and controls her life and chance at happiness. How a simple act she's done a million times before changes her life - maybe forever as she faces a struggle for her life.

The story is great the characters believable and dialogue is enjoyable. I truly did enjoy this book and recommend it highly.

This article contains affiliate links. Affiliate links cost you nothing extra but help to support the Rosevine Cottage Girls so we can continue bringing you recipes, travel posts, garden and farm posts and so much more. Recieved this book from the publisher for our honest review. 


Thursday, January 18, 2018

Tapping Maple Trees Part 1

 Maple tapping is something we've wanted to do for a very long time, not just because we love maple syrup or have a bunch of maple trees. We genuinely thought it sounded like fun! So when I unwrapped a maple tapping kit this Christmas I was ecstatic! I could not wait to try it, so- on to the computer, I hopped researching and reading everything I could get my hands on. I typed in "Maple tapping", "How to tap your maple trees" and "When to tap your trees in Tennessee" in the search bar and did more reading until I was finally confident I would mess things up and had a pretty good grasp of when and how to do this (I tend to over think things).

Tennessee Maple Tapping

Step 1: Identify Your Target -The Maple Trees-

We already knew which trees were maples so we skipped the identification stage, over the years as we added trees and other plants we drew a map of where things were and what they were. Making the first step a breeze. Many types of maples can be tapped (not just sugar maples) the most common are silver, red and black maples. Trees should be at least 12 inches around and healthy.

Fun Fact - Birch and Walnut trees can also be tapped.

Step 2: -Supplies-

We already had a kit (you can find the one we bought here) so we stopped by our local home away from home (not to be confused with Hobby Lobby) that's right Lowes and picked up 1-gallon food grade buckets and lids. (We realized later we could have used gallon water jugs for this). Our kit came with ten spiles (also called taps) so we bought 10 1-gallon buckets and a 5-gallon bucket to pour it in.
Tapping Maple Trees
Spile or Tap

What we used: 
Tapping Kit
10 1-Gallon Buckets
1 5-Gallon Bucket
5/16th Drill Bit
Electric Drill (cordless would be easiest but if you are impatient like me and don't want to wait for the battery to charge you can use a corded one like we did)

Our tapping kit came with hoses, so we drilled a hole just big enough for the tube to be inserted in each lid. The easiest way to get the hoses in is to dip the ends in hot water for several seconds and then insert that way they are softer.

Related Article: Making Butter In 7 Easy Steps

Step 3 -Charge!-

Drill into the tree using the 5/16ths drill bit at a slightly upward angle, you are going to want to go in about an inch past the bark into the white wood (eye protection is recommended- I have a feeling they would frown at my use of sunglasses for this job).

drilling for the maple tap

Insert the smooth end of the spile into the hole you just drilled and gently tap with a hammer, loose is better than tight in this scenario because you are going to need to take it back out after the sap flow has slowed down or the tree buds out (after this point the sap will taste funny and not make good syrup).

tapping maple trees

If you haven't done so already (ahem! We took our own root and attached them when we were preparing the buckets, connect the tubing to the spile (again hot water will help with this).  Secure buckets to the tree, we simply tied it with twine.

Related Article: Making Jack Cheese

Collecting maple sap

Ok, I admit it I've been checking the buckets like crazy the last few days (you only need to check it a couple times a day). The best days for collecting is when the high is between 50-60 degrees and the low between 20-30 degrees. This causes the sap to rise to the top of the tree while it is warm, and return to the bottom when it is cold.  It will take around 6 gallons (yes you read that right) to make 1 quart of syrup.

This article contains affiliate links. Affiliate links cost you nothing extra but help to support the Rosevine Cottage Girls so we can continue bringing you recipes, travel posts, garden and farm posts and so much more.

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