The Empty Cup

Do you ever feel like you've been poured out? That you have nothing left to give, and still the world comes needing more. But it's more than you have to give? Do you feel empty somedays? You just need something, but you aren't quite sure what it is...

It's a gorgeous day today, the sun is out, a blue jay is singing a sweet song from the pear tree. Spring seems to have crept up on us. A robin answers the jay from further in the orchard its orange breast startling against the drab colors of the branches. 

Christian Devotional
A few trees up the plums have burst into a dazzling display of white blooms. At the back of the yard, I can just see the blushing peach tree blooms dancing in the soft breeze against a baby blue sky. Charlotte brushes against my leg, she's been scrounging under the smoker again despite the dozen times I've scolded her. 

Plumb Tree Blooming

My to-do list is long - a self-imposed quota to meet "good enough"- and nagging, but for now, I'm sitting on the deck listening to "outside" sounds and feeling the wind on my skin after so many cold winter days. 

The neighbors aren't home yet, so, for now, it is just me. It's one of my favorite places. I like to escape here early in the morning before anyone is up and watch the sun come up, or after dark when the stars come out and stare up at the sky and just listen. 

Life is hard, people change, friends become strangers as life tugs you in different directions. Not everyone was meant to stay in your life- and I've learned that I'm not meant to stay in some peoples lives. 

Dreams are lost among the stars, and new ones take their place. I find myself here, needing to be refilled. Needing to soak Him back up. 

Peach Tree Blooming

The Lord is near to all who call on him, Psalm 145:18 NIV

Here I find myself need to be refilled, and here I find myself drenched in His love and mercy.

Yes, my soul, find rest in God; my hope comes from him. Psalm 62:5 NIV

I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of the land of Egypt. Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it. Psalm 81:10 NIV

It's ok to step back, to regroup, to find a quiet place and plug back into Him. To take a moment to breathe and refill your cup before charging back out into the hustle and bustle of life to fill others empty cups. Somedays we need someone else to fill ours, and that's ok. That's what we are here for, but don't stay on the sidelines. We were never meant to be just an empty cup on a shelf. Refill, and get moving. Life is far to short to do anything else.

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. www.zondervan.com The “NIV” and “New International Version” are trademarks registered in the United States Patent and Trademark Office by Biblica, Inc.™

Irish Shortbread Cookie Recipe + Cooking Gods Measuring Cup & Spoon Review

A few months back a friend of our blog sent us a package with some goodies from the town in Scotland where our ancestors live in many many years ago. It was so fun to open it up and go through it all and see a bit of our history (yes it really really made me want to tour Europe. One day!), one of the many goodies she sent us was shortbread cookies. With the first bite, I got hooked on these amazing little treats so with St. Patrick's day just around the bend we thought we would try our hand at making an Irish Shortbread Cookie. These are soooo good! Seriously I think they are my latest addiction. I just love them! 

Shortbread recipe


Ingredients:


2 Cups Organic All-Purpose Flour
1/2 Cup Tapioca Flour or Corn Starch
2/3 Cups Raw Sugar
1 Cup Irish Grass Fed Butter

Baking

Directions:


Preheat oven to 275F. Cream butter and sugar until fluffy, sift together tapioca flour or cornstarch and flour add to the butter mixture. Press into an 8x8 inch pan. Prick all over with a fork. Bake for 30 minutes, then reduce heat to 250F and bake 1 to 11/2 hours. Remove from pan and cut into 21 rectangle cookies.



Related Article: Irish Apple Cake Recipe

Irish Shortbread recipe

Cooking Gods Measuring Cups & Spoon Review

Cooking God's Measuring Cups & Spoons

Recently we were asked to if we would be willing to try out a set of measuring cups and spoons [Link to them on Amazon HERE] since we are always in the kitchen trying new thing we said "Yes!". A few days later we got a package in the mail, we were in the middle of a remodel so we hadn't gotten a chance to try them out until yesterday.

I have to say I am very pleased with them! I like how they come with a D shaped clip to hold them together but you can remove them if needed. The little lip on the front is so helpful, they are easy to hold on to and the fractions are easy to read. They are FDA approved premium stainless steel, dishwasher safe and even have half-way capacity markings on the cups so you don't have to use them all while baking or cooking.

This article contains affiliate links. We received this product for our honest review.


The Lost Castle Book Review

Prepare to embark on a journey with three different women in three different time periods, and discover a lost castle nestled in the woods. A castle that touches each of these women's lives and a family heirloom that links them all together. Through the French Revolution, World War II, and present times travel with these women, through love, loss, war and an enchanted castle.



The Lost Castle by Kristy Cambron
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is a masterpiece! Truly a work of art, a book not be read but inhaled. It takes you on a journey of fairy tales and legends secrets and love and the un-fairytale-like messiness of life. It follows the story of three women, in three different times but all touched by the Sleeping Beauty. This book had me laughing so loud I was worried I would wake everyone in the house and crying into my pillow. It's one the best books I have ever read and will forever remain one of my favorites. View all my reviews



Visiting Fort Boonesborough Part 1

After exploring east Tennesse and it's waterfalls, Kentucky is surprisingly flat -not completely, but nothing like east TN. The trees are turning brilliant shades of red and orange, no two alike so that as we speed by it looks like a forest fire punctuated by fields of dry corn stalks and yellowish-green tobacco plants. We passed a little white church nestled between the fields like a painting, so peaceful and American.


The flatlands give way to beautiful hills in a colorful skirt of trees a thousand colors splashed across them in a dazzling display- and just like that the flatlands return. We're still around 65 miles from the fort, the scenery has switched to drab shades of green and brown, occasionally pocked with yellow. 


We pulled into the parking lot and the outer walls of the fort greeting our eyes in drab and unimpressive colors against a muted sky. A Washington Memorial type monument sits in the center of a small flower garden bearing the names of those who lived at this fort.


Monument at Fort Boonesborough


The gates yawned wide as we stepped into the past, our families past. You see our family lived at this fort, they walked this ground (well not this exact spot this is the working fort, the original site isn't too far from here. We will be visiting there next), their blood sweat, tears, and dreams went into this place. We've wanted to come here for a very long time especially after Mr. Cottage got to explore his families roots in Germany, but it just never worked out until now.



The fort is deceptively large, cabins line the outer walls, the group that set this up have made each in a different stage of life at the fort to give you an idea of what it might have been like, along with several "workshops" like soap making, weaving etc.




Related Articles: Lost River Cave









In each corner of the fort, there is a bigger building called a blockhouse, the dark wood against the light plaster is strangely beautiful and homie, I can almost picture my family here 200 years ago. 


We only had 30 minutes to look around before they closed because the drive took much longer than we expected. We got to speak with a very sweet lady who made soap there, she gave mom a book about the women at the fort and told us about some of the events they host.










All too soon it was time to leave, Mr. Cottage took a bit longer than us to finish looking around and the ranger locking up joked that he was going to lock him in. Now we are off to the original site before it gets dark and we have to head home.

Our Favorite Farmhouse Decor Items On Amazon

We're in the middle of remodeling the main bathroom and laundry room this week, the washer and dryer are sitting in the middle of the dining room. Don't worry we'll be sharing pictures soon! So we thought we would share our new Amazon boutique with you. 

Welcome to our Rosevine Cottage Amazon Store! Filled with some with some of our favorite farmhouse decor and furniture on Amazon. It looks something like this, it's just like shopping on Amazon normally you just scroll through and click on things you like to see them it won't cost you any extra. 






Related Article: Beautiful Farmhouse Pillows







Irish Apple Cake Recipe

St. Patrick's Day is right around the corner so we thought we would try a traditional Irish dish! This cake is really good! Not super sweet, the apple pieces, nutmeg and cloves are a wonderful mix of sweet and spice. 

St. Patricks Day Recipes

Ingredients:

4 large Organic Granny Smith Apples
¾ + 2 Tablespoons Cup Raw Sugar
2 Teaspoon Aluminum Free Baking Powder
¾ Cup Whole Milk
6 oz. (1 stick plus 4 Tablespoons) Grass-fed Butter
2 Free Range Eggs
⅛ Teaspoon Himilian Pink Salt
¼ Teaspoon Ground Cloves
¼ Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg

Related Article: St. Patrick's Day Breakfast

St. Patricks Day Recipes

Directions:


Grease and flour a 9" round springform pan. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large mixing bowl sift together flour, baking powder, salt, cloves, and nutmeg. Using a pastry knife cut in butter until it resembles fine crumbs. Add sugar. Peel and slice apples into 1/4 inch wedges, then cut each wedge into 3 pieces. Mix apples into flour mixture until well combined. In a small separate bowl beat eggs and milk, add to the flour mixture. Using a spatula fold until just combined, the batter should be thick and dough-like with no loose flour still at the bottom of the bowl. Transfer batter into a pan, flatten the top using the spatula. Sprinkle 2 Tablespoons sugar over the top of the cake. Bake for 45-50 minutes, use a toothpick to test the center of the cake. 

St. Patricks Day Recipes

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.

He Drew Me Out Of Deep Waters

He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters. Micah 7:8NIV

Something about that verse calls to me, whispers like a balm to my soul... He reached down- it doesn't say He waited for me to find Him, or He reached down once I got myself out of the mess, out of the rising water no, just the opposite. 

He reached down... and took hold of me. My rescuer, when life's storms rage around me and when I royally mess things up.


Do you ever feel like your in deep waters? The water keeps pounding against you, dragging you along and no matter how hard you try to kick, it's never enough? Never enough to keep you above the water. Never enough to get you out of the water. Do you ever feel like your drowning? I know I do. 

Life is overwhelming at times.

Related Article: In The Midst Of Deep Waters

He drew me out of deep waters... He does something I could never do. Pulls me like lifeguard from the water.

He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. Psalms 40:2 NIV

He is my rescuer. 

He drags me from the mud and pulls me from the waves. 

And yet time after time we doubt His goodness, we doubt that He will save us, we believe this time it's too bad, too hard, to fearsome for Him to save us. Why is that? 

The bible is literally filled from cover to cover with the power of God over our messes, our storms, our problems. So why do we believe our problems are so much bigger? He's never left me drowning under life's waves or sinking into the muddy places in my life. No, He comes, to save me every time- even when I can't see a way.


He brings hope to hopeless situations. He brings refuge to stormy places. He brings peace to my frayed places. And He brings Himself to me when I fall bruised and tired, wind tossed and wave-battered. He draws me close and whispers His promises to my heart, even in my darkest places. He stands beside me. He races like a loving parent to pluck me from the ground and strengthen me. He urges me forward, guiding me one step at a time don't look at the waves look at me... He restores my soul when I am too tired to go on.