Brave Adventure

Brave Adventure

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Reflections on a Year

Mr. and Mrs. John Caleb Mummert

I have been counting down the moments until this Saturday when Cal and I will leave to celebrate our One Year Anniversary! I turned to Cal the other night and said, "Can you believe it's been a whole year!?" His response, "Yes. It's been a year." My very practical husband. He has been such an amazing addition to my life and I am beyond grateful for him. At the same time, marriage is not for the weak at hard. Marriage is hard. Marriage is a daily choice to turn, look at that man, smell the morning breath, and love him. To forget, even if only for a moment, your needs and look after the needs of another. Some times you're tired, unhappy, having "that time of the month", sick, frustrated, stressed and you still love. Some times you're happier than you ever thought possible, feel more love than you knew you could, and have this sense of "oneness" that comes only through marriage. God has done an amazing thing in His creation of marriage. 

I have also been looking back over the year and thinking about some of my favorite memories! So, I thought I would leave you with some memories, maybe a few pictures, and just a brief overview of a fun-filled year of growth with the Mummert family. Let's start from the very beginning... a very good place to start....
Our Honeymoon: All the Dove Chocolate dipped ice cream we could eat!

Bridal Portrait: Hillary Anne Photography
We got married December 19, 2009 at Travis Avenue Baptist Church, reception at Mira Vista Country Club and Honeymoon at The Old Edwards Inn in Highlands, NC. 

I began to learn how to bake and cook lots of tasty dinners!
 
 We celebrated our birthdays and dressed in some futuristic, spacy costumes!
Cal's brother graduated, leaving us sweaty and sun burned haha
I began to make some lovely cakes (this is the remnants of my bonfire cake) and celebrate Staci's birthday!
Cal convinced me to start taking karate- this is from when I got my blue belt, but I now have my orange belt and am working toward my green.
We were blessed by God to attend Camp Tallowood and invest in some amazing students!
We are making great friends through our newlywed life group
 
My baking zeal continued to get more elaborate with my s'more cupcake creation

 
 My niece's 1st Birthday! She is the cutest little girl in the history of time.
The Harry Potter premier was incredible! I dressed as Hermione and we waited in line starting at 9:30pm.
DNow with some fun ladies at Lakeside BC in Granbury, TX
Aggie pride as the Wrecking Crew took down Nebraska - they would later defeat t.u. to send us on to the Cotton Bowl!
We got and decorated our first real Christmas Tree while singing carols and watching movies. So fun!
We have been blessed to work with the college department at our church and we had Classy Christmas with these dapper men and fabulous ladies


A Gingerbread House making competition ended the season for Life Group
Our festive house!
  Merry Christmas! Remember the birth of Christ in this season, but also remember the best part! Christ didn't stay a baby but He group up, lived a perfect life, died and rose again to save us.
Happy Anniversary, Caleb - I love you!

Ethiopian Adoption

Please check out the Ordinary Heroes Blog, she is in Ethiopia right now and is working in many different orphanages while she's there! You can be an Ordinary Hero too, but supporting this ministry.

There is also some stories about little girls and boys who need families. It'll break your heart and help you want to adopt kids as well. God desires that we would provide for the widow and the orphan!

Also read the story about how a little girl they met was able to skype with her new family from Ethiopia to the US! What a beautiful story!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Christmas Card Fun!

Merry Stripes Christmas
Make a statement with custom Christmas cards at Shutterfly.
View the entire collection of cards.


We had a BLAST making our Christmas Card this week! We took these pictures at the Nebraska v. TAMU game which was an amazing game. We won but I was completely stressed throughout the game. Then we came around and BTHO t.u. the next week - crazy times. A-WHOOP!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Kate

Read this to have your world rocked

So the more I look into adoption, foster car and waiting children the more I am burdened for orphan care. How could we ignore such a big problem! If 1 in every 17 Christians would adopt, the problem would be solved. In Mississippi, there are more churches in the state than children that need to be adopted (just a smidgen below 900 children). If 1 in every 2 churches adopted a child we would solve it. Oh my goodness. How has the burden for those who cannot care for themselves fallen away from the church so extremely.


James 1:27 folks, it's time to step up.

Could you take Kate home (above link)? Could you be part of the people to break the cycle?

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Radical Conviction

Hello Everyone... maybe you don't remember me, but my name is Claire and you like reading my blog (I hope).

So recently my Life Group (i.e. Sunday School) class decided that we didn't want just any ordinary life or relationship with Christ, but we wanted one that looks intentionally different from the world. We want a life that is infectious for Christ's name and leads people to Him just in its very nature.
Our first step was to begin small groups where we can be open, challenging and intimate with each other. We decided for a closed group format, some intense accountability, and we began to study Radical by David Platt.
From Day 1, this book has led to some intense conviction.

The chapter on deck for this week talked about poverty and how God has placed the church in a vital place to minister to their need. Many people that do not believe in God cite the injustice in the world as proof of His nonexistence. However, God has indeed done something about many of these injustices in that He created the church! Whoop! It was a heavy chapter, but such a great thing to consider. We took a look at our budget because we want to make sure that we are completely using our funds to glorify the Lord and give as He has called us to give. Some people that got on board with this in Platt's church had some incredible stories about what God had done through their generosity. God is so faithful to use us if we will seek His will and be open to Him. We are going to begin selling more of our stuff so that we can pay off our debt faster and give more of our income. Alongside this same notion, I went to a seminar on adoption and orphan care today. This just went right alongside what we had talked about in small group, because the orphans are the poor and are an integral part of the people we're called to serve (James 1:27). We looked at all forms of orphan care: adoption, foster care, supporting children overseas (Compassion International, CERI, etc), and supporting adoptive/foster families. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that God has called me and Cal to adopt children, I just do not know when yet.

Anyone else up for a healthy dose of conviction? Get to reading!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Hired!

Every since Cal and I got married, I have had a mixture of jobs that I am not qualified for haha. In college I always had the same two jobs: I was a Supplemental Instructor (awesome job- I got to take political science classes and get paid for it, then teach study methods to the students using the content of the class) and a Youth Group Intern. As far as those two jobs, I am extremely qualified. Outside of this venue.... I used to babysit one kid and that is it. So, when we began thinking about whether I should work or not, I really started realizing that I am not qualified for much outside of the church. I applied for a few church jobs with no luck, and some how managed to land a job at a medical clinic..... me and my youth ministry, Russian speaking, communication degree, science hating (other than physics) self was working at a medical clinic. I was in charge of going through every single patient chart from 2006 or previous, checking if it was inactive, and putting it where it went depending on its activity. I had numerous paper cuts. Needless to say my job was immensely boring, and I did not care for it. I had a lot of fun meeting new people and winning a weight loss competition (funny story behind that I promise!!), but was beyond ready for my last day when it finally arrived. No more charts for Claire. Say goodbye to the closest thing I will most likely ever have to a medical career haha! Next, I did nothing. A lot of it. I tried to start cleaning houses, organize people's lives, cook, whatever people would let me do, but all I really got was a lot of free time and an incredibly clean apartment (turns out that's what I like to do in my free time). After a little while I started selling Mary Kay cosmetics. This has been going really well for me and I am loving using the skin care for myself! It has also helped me become acquainted with more women which is something I've always struggled with. I'm really enjoying myself. Well, don't you know that when it rains it pours? I have now been hired to bake two cakes one for a baby reveal/birthday (the cake will look like a present, the color of the cake inside the icing will be pink or blue depending on whether the baby is a boy or girl and that's how the parents-to-be are going to find out!) and a wedding (no pressure...haha). On top of this, I have also been hired (starting in December) to work as an intern in the missions department at the Mississippi Baptist Convention (because of a BSM connection from A&M, who would have thought!). I am so thrilled at these different opportunities, and now I'm just praying that I don't let them get the best of me. Good thing for discipline or no school work would ever get done.

Life's crazy... don't drink the punch!

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Angel Food Cake

For an update on life, look at the post below that I just put up (pictures included!). This particular post is a step by step in pictures of how to make yummy angel food cake.

Ingredients:

12 eggs (I actually only needed 11)
1 1/4 cups confectioners' sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar

Directions:
Separate eggs; discard yolks or refrigerate for another use.
[I personally like to scramble my yolks (and I had half of a white left over) and put them on toast for lunch or something so I don't feel wasteful. It's really up to you, but if you store them make all the yolks separate from each other, storing them in an ice cube tray or something of that nature.] Measure egg whites, adding or removing whites as needed to equal 1-1/2 cups. Place in a mixing bowl; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, sift confectioners' sugar and flour together three times; set aside.
Add cream of tartar, extracts and salt to egg whites; beat on high speed.
Gradually add sugar, beating until sugar is dissolved and stiff peaks form.
What it should look like when you first start beating
Starts to turn white...
...waiting...
"Stiff Peaks" - one way to know that you have really beaten them long enough to become stiff peaks is when you can turn the bowl upside down and nothing runs out! (It looks a lot like cool whip)
Fold in flour mixture, 1/4 cup at a time.

Gently spoon into an ungreased 10-in. tube pan. Cut through batter with a knife to remove air pockets. Bake at 350 degrees F for 40-45 minutes or until cake springs back when lightly touched.
[You can insert a wooden skewer or tooth pick into the middle of the tube, that is between the inner tube and the outer tube, if it comes out clean, the cake is ready!]

Immediately invert pan; cool completely before removing cake from pan.
Use a spatula to loosen the edges of the cake. [I used a toothpick to loosen the inner tube part]
Turn the cake out onto a wire rack once it has cooled for at least one hour. [It can be done in less time in a pinch, but will making icing, etc really difficult for you.]





While you allow it to cool a bit more, begin to make your whipped cream! Whipped cream is exactly that.... heavy cream you whip.

Ingredients:
1 cup heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp vanilla

Whip the heavy whipping cream until stiff, then add in sugar and vanilla.
[The same rule applies to whipped cream as does to egg whites - if you can hold the bowl upside down and it does not run out, voila you have made whipped cream! It is so much better tasting than the store bought kind, but there is absolutely no shame in using that if time does not permit making it.]

Now, cut your cooled angel food cake in half or in thirds (thirds is my favorite) and put a layer of whip cream, a layer of sliced strawberries, and another layer of whip cream in between each layer of cake! Then "ice" the whole cake in whip cream.

Next add your strawberries wherever you want them, and try to make it pretty. The strawberries look really striking against the white whip cream, so no one will notice that the whip cream does not lay down perfectly like fondant. This is so yummy, people won't be looking at it for long any way!

Happy Eating!

Taking a Break

In reward to myself for working so hard all morning, and every day this week, without much break at all, I have decided to take a lunch hour to blog to you!

School has been so good, but so hectic at the same time. I have my days very meticulously planned and get very flustered when they do not work properly. Don't they know they are supposed to go perfectly according to my checklist? Gracious. (Haha) I am learning so much and feel like God is really teaching me more this semester than He has in a long time. My reading for many of my classes is actually enjoyable to me and the discussion board questions are generally thought provoking. Not to mention it is just awesome to study Hebrew and Greek every week. Last week as I prepared my Sunday School lesson, Matthew Henry mentioned a Greek word in his commentary of Acts, sooooo I got out my Greek New Testament, found the verse and the word, figured out the meaning of the sentence according to what I've learned thus far and got even more out of the commentary and the Word than I originally understood. What a privilege! God has truly blessed me to allow me the opportunity to learn all of this.

In other news, my Mary Kay has been going really well and I'm enjoying it still. I felt like I stagnated a little bit when school started because I was trying to figure out my system, but now that I've got a good routine going, I have picked back up and am running full steam ahead! Also, my National Sales Director came into town for a workshop on Tuesday and was really inspirational, helping give me a kick in the pants haha. She's a really sweet lady. I even qualified for a the Bronze level of achievement for August which is a big deal for a new consultant (just trust me on that).

Karate is my new best-friend. Man, I wish I had discovered this talent before! I am sore in places that I did not realize had muscles. The other night we began class (my second hour of class, I'd already been to one class) with 500 punches for a warm up. Okay so do me a favor really fast: Put your right arm out as if you're going to do arm circles, now feel that muscle right at the edge of your armpit that connects your bicep to your should (and what will be your chest muscles), THAT is the muscle that hurt the most. Odd. I had never had that muscle be in pain before. However, I am LOVING doing it. It takes a lot of focus, discipline and control, but that's like my middle name. It's like having to stand at attention in marching band for hours. When I'm in a stance in karate, sometimes I imagine Mr. Rankin staring at me while I stand at attention. Stand still in a controlled fashion? I can do this. So, I tested last Wednesday and got my BLUE BELT (the first colored belt) after only 3 weeks of training (I practice almost every day though). The Mummert family has been doing karate for ages, and it is tradition for them to have a dessert that is the same color as the belt you received, so last Wednesday we went to the in-laws house and had Blueberry Donuts! (I don't like anything else blueberry...) Here is a picture (taken a little late) of me, my blue belt, and my doughnut.

Love it!

We have "graduated" out of the nearly/newlywed Sunday School at church and are in the class that is Newlyweds & Parents of Newborns - this is sort of a stretch since no one has children and only two girls are even barely pregnant (the rest of them are avoiding drinking from the same water).We had our own version of the Amazing Race to finish off a good year with our fabulous teachers though!
We were paired with some friends: Morgan and Drew
I have also had many cooking adventures and will picture three here: a BEAUTIFUL cake made for Sara's birthday with the lovely Joanna Jones fun shaped pancakes and homemade cinnamon and sugar bagels! I'm going to put up another post after this about the angel food cake, but it has a lot of pictures to help someone else make it too. Enjoy!

Yummm!
Cinnamon Sugar is my favorite
That one is not a cat or batman, it's a tulip.
I hope you enjoyed my late post!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Knowing God

When I began buying my textbooks, I did not expect that any of them would change my life. I knew that my Dad would enjoy that I was reading Knowing God by J.I. Packer for my Systematic Theology class this semester, but expected it to be a lecture in a book. Well school starts this Thursday and that gives me a month until my book review over Knowing God is due, so I have begun to read it. (Being the schedule nerd that I am, I have already scheduled out everything for my Systematic class) Well I needed to read two chapters today which was no big deal in page numbers, but a huge deal in conviction. Read it.


It begins with talking about the purpose for the study of God. While studying the Bible, theology, and doctrine has been something I was interested in since middle school (boy did that make me popular), this is not the case for everyone. Some people do not see the point in studying God. Packer talks about how people often times study different things, conquer them (so to speak) and come away thinking, "Behold I am wise", but this is not the case when we study God.
"But when we come to this master science, finding that our plumbline cannot sound its depth, and that our eagle eye cannot see its height, we turn away with the thought that vain man would be wise, but he is like a wild ass's colt; and with solemn exclamation, 'I am but of yesterday, and know nothing.' No subject of contemplation will tend more to humble the mind, than thoughts of God..." 
(C.H. Spurgeon as quoted by J.I. Packer page 17-18, Knowing God) 
Wow, can we even fully take that in. I mean, go back and read that quote a few times. Doesn't that blow your mind? It should. We have to study God in order to live in a place created by Him and run by Him.
Packer goes on to accuse (rightfully so) most of us of knowing about God with out really knowing Him. Do we? Are we so wrapped up in books about theology, about the history, about the context, biographies of biblical people, biographies of Christian celebrities (missionaries, martyrs, etc.) that we have missed Him altogether!? I would say to Packer, RIGHT ON, I think most of us do not know God as He would have us know Him because we know so much about Him without applying Him to our hearts and lives. It's not enough to have truth in your brain if that's where it dies. If we knew God "many of us [would never] naturally say that in the light of the knowledge of God which we have come to enjoy, past disappointments and present heartbreaks, as the world counts heartbreaks, don't matter." (25) This means that not only do we 'count them as loss' but that we don't have them consistently in our mind. Of the comparison Packer makes asking the reader, "what normal person spends his time nostalgically dreaming of manure?" Yet, isn't that what it means to count it as loss or to say that the things of the world no longer matter? Definitely. Knowing God should lead to an uncontainable joy that shatters disappointments and heartbreaks. Packer uses the book of Daniel to show us how God has already taught us this lesson in His Divine Word. News flash to Claire (that's me), Packer is not super novel, God already knew it, said it and meant it. Daniel and his buddies definitely knew God deeply. Packer breaks it down into four characteristics, but they are powerful.
1. "Those who know God have great energy for Him." Think about Daniel and his 3 amigos, think about all they went through. They showed great energy for Him. They stood firm in their beliefs and they took deliberate action to show this dedication to God. Most often times, this shows itself through prayer. That verse about the prayer of a righteous man is legitimate. If we feel unrest when we think of what the world is doing and about the need to act in God's will according to His plan, it'll manifest itself in our prayer life.
2. "Those who know God have great thoughts of God." This doesn't mean we think God is a cool guy, no way. Daniel realized that God's hand was coming for Israel and He knew that in spite of the overwhelming power of Babylon, God had it under control. God was the one orchestrating the plan. He is history. I love when Packer said that God "will have the last word." No worries, guys, because whatever happens.... God will have the last word. This aspect also evidences itself in a solid prayer life (although not only in prayer) that is sold out on the truth of who God is and recognizing ourself in comparison to that.
3. "Those who know God show great boldness for God." Daniel went the lion's den because he was unwilling to pray to any other king, and he represented this love for God boldly. He wasn't praying in his closet, he was doing it for the world to see. Whew, that's a frightening one. Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were willing to be burnt to death to show that the believed in God, which flows perfectly into the next point...
4. "Those who know God have great contentment in God." Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego were not frightened to enter that furnace, but had peace that only God could bring. They knew how big their God was and that He could do something miraculous to save them, yet (Daniel 3:16-17) "even if he [God] does not we want you to know, O king, that we will not serve your gods." They knew that God did not have to intervene, but were at peace that He would do what was in His plan and what would bring glory to His name. Wow, that is some serious trust.
Packer ends with this poem...
"Lord, it belongs not to my care
Whether I die or live;
To love and serve Thee is my share,
And this Thy grace must give.

If life be long, I will be glad,
That I may long obey;

If short - then why should I be sad
To soar to endless day?"

We need to recognize how little we actually know God. We need to seek Him with everything we've got. 
Luke 11:9 "Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be open to you." 
If we will just seek God with all our heart, fully realizing that we are lacking and small, unable to gain true wisdom without Him, He will teach us wisdom. That is the desire that He will grant. 
Awesome.

This is all a summary of Packer's Knowing God with some of my added commentary. 

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

So many things to luv

Well Cal and I got a huuuuge treat last week. The in laws decided that they wanted to take us to
DCI
So amazing!! I cannot tell you how excited I was to go. I jumped up and down a little, not to mention squealing like a little girl. Whoop! We all loaded up into the car, grabbed some food at God's house... I mean, Whataburger, and then headed to Hattiesburg for the show. It blew me away. That's the kind of stuff that makes music majors, drum line lovers and hard corps band nerds. I have to say that not all drum corps are created equal. There were several schools there and during the first few groups, they were loud and completely annoying, talking throughout the whole show. I did my best to be patient because these weren't the groups I particularly came to see. Patience young one... Well, then the magic happened. Magic, I tell you. The group's pit set up and so did the color guard, but no band. The crowd is all in whispers, "where is the band?", "is this it?", and similar things. We hear a piercing musical debut that brings all the crowd to their feet. What anticipation! And then..... Phantom Regiment takes the field. I was mesmerized the entire time. What an incredible show. Shame on those judges for giving them 4th place! Gracious! The Blue Devils got first - duh, the Carolina Crown got second - worth it and wonderful, The Cadets got third -clean show but so so boring, they should have received a lower placing, and Phantom got fourth. (My ranking: 1st Blue Devils, 2nd Phantom, 3rd Carolina Crown, 4th or 5th Cadets - other bands were good but I don't remember which show went with what name since the announcer was so fuzzy sounding).

Phantom Regiment - Incredible
Blue Devils - very clean
I really didn't think that my week could get any better, but Cal showed me that with his help...it could have some added awesomeness. What would that be you say? To have your husband cook for you. Well, not just cook.... GRILL
Mediterranean Chicken, Grilled Sweet Corn, and Grilled Asparagus 
Yummy in my tummy! I am so so in love with my family at this point. What else could a girl want? 
I'll tell you!..... FRIENDS
I got the wonderful privilege of having some of the NexGen college girls over to Cal and I's apartment to do my first solo Mary Kay skin care class. It was so much fun! K came over early and we made lots of delicious baked goods while wearing my Minnie Mouse apron from Disney World. We sampled all of our creations, and managed to digest plenty of icing in the process, giving us a giggle filled sugar high. After setting up our lovely tables full of goodies and skin care products, the other ladies came over and we had a great time pampering ourselves while sampling Mary Kay products. (I'm a consultant now in case you didn't know yet) K and I took a lot of fun pictures together and of the goods, but I'm just including a picture of us all together and a picture of our goodies table. Enjoy!

Pink lemonade, chips/salsa, goldfish, brownie bites (homemade), and strawberry cupcakes with butter cream icing (homemade) - yummm 


K is clearly the one in my apron, she loved that thing!
The girl I'm standing next to, Em, brought me some flowers too. So sweet! We all had a great time being girly together. Do our faces look clean? I hope so!