Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas Time




Just a little bit from my Christmas Season.
1-A portrait of my husband and I {wish I could post the one with the kids}.
2-Frozen toes from a cold snowy day outside
3- Picking out our Christmas Tree {yes, I look dorky but I was so cold!}

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Gifts that Make a Difference #4



I've mentioned Andrew Peterson's albumn Counting Stars here but, I wanted to include this in my 'Gifts that Make a Difference' because this CD has been a huge blessing in my life.

This CD is so encouraging and edifying, if you have someone your wanting to purchase an extra little gift for then I highly recommend this CD. You can purchase it for $10 on iTunes and find samples as well.



Here are some lyrics from "In the Night"

"Like the son who thought he'd gone beyond forgiveness
Too ashamed to lift his head, but if he could lift his head
He would see his father running from a distance
In the night, my hope lives on

And I can see the crowd of men retreating
As he stands between the woman and their stones
And if mercy in His holy heart is beating
Then in the night, my hope lives on.

Oh, in the night
My hope lives on
Oh, in the night
My hope lives on"

{Just in case you missed them, 'Gifts that make a Difference' #1, #2, #3}
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Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Gifts that make a Difference #3


This gift idea is something that makes a difference in the one receiving the gift. It's called a FAITH BOX.

What's a Faith Box? It's "A new resource for parents to guide their child's faith journey and capture spiriutal growth keepsakes. MY FAITH BOX includes a MY FAITH BOX and MY FAITH BOOK. Ideal to help you create an age-specific plan on each birthday and capture memories from special milestones; while giving you resources and ideas for how to be intentional in helping your child know, love and follow Jesus."

It's a great way to focus on spiritual goals and developments of your children. It also has great ideas for creating memorable traditions with your kids. This would be a great gift for a new mom at Christmas or for any mom to start with their children at any age.

I actually received mine for free from Angie at
Good Morning Girls! I love mine! Check out the site it's loading with awesome posts!



{Price is $25 and includes domestic shipping}
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Monday, December 6, 2010

Flower Hairpin

Here's a simple gift {Christmas or anytime} you can make in just a few minutes!


Ingredients
One fake flower {hobby lobby has all flowers 50% off this week}
Hot Glue Gun
Hairpins {craft stores}


Step 1Pull flower from stem

Step 2

Glue hair pin to back of flower

{tips #1 hold open the hair pin until the glue dries}

{tip #2 cut the backing of the flower where the stem short}

That's it.. wrap it up and give it away or use it for your Christmas festives!

I'm linking this to these lovely places and...

handmade projects
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Christmas Tree


Check out this beautiful Christmas tree my friend put together for her

precious little girl! It's so adorable I just had to share, what little girl {or big girl}

wouldn't want this in their room?

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Sunday, December 5, 2010

Peace on Earth Challenge #2

Challenge Number 2 for Peace on Earth December challenge is one I'm going to definitely enjoy!
After an amazing post on why our bodies need rest and relaxation {
find it here} Courtney gives very specific instructions for this week’s challenge which is taking a bubble bath:

An awesome bubble bath takes planning so here's what you need:

1. Privacy - all children asleep and the husband aware that you don't want to be interrupted

2. Hot water and loads of Bubbles - preferably ones that smell yummy!

3. Some soft classical music

4. A hand towel rolled up as a pillow

5. A cold drink to set beside the tub

6. Your Bible and if you are afraid you'll get it wet - exchange it for a good Christian book or simply quietness - reflecting on your day and talking with God in prayer.

Optional: a lit candle

Now sit back, RELAX, be alone with just you and God - 25 minutes and VOILA - you emerge a new woman. {taken directly from Women Living Well}

I already feel relaxed! When I take relaxing baths I also like to get some body scrub and face masks to put on.

Please head over to
Courtney's blog to read her full post {which is very helpful during this busy season} and to check out all the ladies joining in on this challenge!


{if you missed the first week challenge you can check it out here}
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Thursday, December 2, 2010

Gifts that Make a Difference #2



I want to continue the 'Gifts that Make a Difference' and begin by introducing my friend Suzanne. She is a fellow blogger in the process of adoption. Adoption is extremely costly and her family has created these awesome shirts you can purchase to help with their adoption.



$16

$18
If your intersted in these cute shirts and helping orphans find a home please contact me and I will forward it to Suzanne!
{dwyhomemakingATymailDOTcom}
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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Controlling Thoughts

"I am broken, I am bleeding,
I'm scared and I'm confused,
but You are faithful.
I am weary, unbelieving.
God please help my unbelief!
I will proclaim it to the world.
I will declare it to my heart
And sing it when the sun is shining.
I will scream it in the dark."
Faithful by Steven Curtis Chapman


Can I be real?
The past twenty-four hours have been some of the most difficult for me.
As you know my husband and I are in the process of Adoption and things were sailing smoothly along when all of a sudden it's taken a 90 degree turn and I'm seriously a little dizzy. This morning when I was completely alone with the Lord I felt like I was in such a good place. I was helpless, desperate for His presence, focused. I was waging war on my children’s behalf and waging war against my thoughts.

One thing I'm beginning to learn during trials is that I must have self-control with my thoughts. See, it's easy to let my thoughts dictate my emotions, mood and behavior. However, we are supposed to speak to ourselves with Truth instead of leading our sinful/self-seeking thoughts control us. We are supposed to forcefully snatch up our thoughts and make them line-up with the scripture. Until, we do this we are giving into our sinful mind. We are not receiving life-giving water that we so desperately need in a time of darkness but, we are gaining more sorrow, heart ache and pain.

1 Corinthians tells us that we are to "take every thought captive to obey Christ." This means that when I'm beginning to complain and throw-up my hands because I'm deeply hurt, I step back and literally speak Truth to myself. I remind myself that God is working even this hurtful/painful/gut-wrenching situation for my good. His grace is sufficient.

When we experience these trails we must declare to ourselves that God is Faithful and His Promises are True. We truly must scream it in the dark times because our old nature thoughts are loud and they tell us to fret and worry. Therefore, we must scream over our sinful thoughts and declare that God is here and He is of all people is to be Trusted.

I'm hopeless He gives me Hope
I'm confused He gives me Wisdom
I'm hurt He gives me Healing
I'm doubting He gives me Faith


Please pray for my family during this time as so many decisions are being made which is completely out of my hands. My life is on hold right now.


I'm linking this here:
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Peace on Earth Challenge



Can I say that this is my first Christmas with Kids and I want to make sure and savor each moment of it! I love creating traditions, especially during the holidays. I want December to be a peaceful and bonding time for my family. I want us to be able to soak up every Christmas song and movie each Advent devotional each teachable moment everything that this month will bring. However, I do feel a little strangled when I think of EVERYTHING that must be done this month. I've never waited this long to shop for Christmas but, it's the beginning of December and I've only purchased a few gifts and babysitters are hard to find when you live hours away from family.

Anyway, this gets me to another challenge from Courtney, a December challenge that I hope will help me to focus on Christ and try to enjoy my family this month. The first challenge is to write 1Peter 5:7 on my planner so that when I turn to it I can remember that God cares when I'm struggling with all I have to do and He will give me wisdom about the things I must do and the things that I could mark off the list.

If your a blogger then I hope you will join me over at
Women Living Well for the link up each week. If your not a blogger then please join along and leave comments so I know your going on this journey with me!
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Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Buying that make a Difference 1

I want to keep sharing a few Christmas Gifts that you can purchase that can make a difference for the Kingdom! Today's Buying that makes a difference is
GoBena Coffee

The video below tells a little bit about this mission and how it got started. How is this a gift that makes a difference? Basically, you purchase coffee from them {we all drink coffee or at least know someone who does} and you are providing work for those in 3rd world countries who need work and providing food, education and the Gospel to orphans!

I was first exposed to CoBena Coffee at the Adopting for Life confrence {in Feb. 2010} and have been hooked ever since! The shipping can be pricy but, if you buy in larger quanities I think it's free or discounted! {the coffee is amazing, seriously better than Starbucks, the Ethiopian coffee has been my fav}.


Gobena Coffee Story from Danae Lehman on Vimeo.

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Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Yay for Kids {abortion awareness}

Yay for Kids  Abort73.com




Abort73.com: Abortion Unfiltered
Here is an awesome way to help with abortion awareness. It's called Abort73.com. Their mission is stated in the following video but, it's geared at referring people to their site where people can see facts about abortion. Many people have pro-life shirts that have clever sayings but, can't do justice to what abortion is really doing. This website shares gear {super cheap I might add} in order to point people to their site. It's not a money scheme but, a mission, a ministry and at the very heart of God.







Video Text/Dialogue:
Abort73.com exists because abortion exists.

Because Planned Parenthood exists.

Because every day in America, more than 3,000 innocent human beings are destroyed in their mother's womb .

Abort73 exists because the case against abortion, the secular, biological case, is massive and overwhelming, but largely unknown.

Abort73 exists because 70% of all the women who abort in America claim the name of Christ.

Because there is a world of pro-life people out there who are doing nothing to actually combat the injustice of abortion.


Abort73.com exists becasue I don't want to waste my life.

"...Whatever you do, find the God-centered, Christ-exalting, Bible-saturated passion of your life, and find your way to say it and live for it and die for it. And you will make a difference that lasts. You will not waste your life." - John Piper.


DontWasteYourLife.com

Abort73.com

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Monday, November 22, 2010

Unique Christmas Gifts


I've been thinking about Christmas gifts a lot lately... every year I seek to find special gifts that are unique to the person I'm giving to. This Christmas I'm attempting to make several gifts but, I also want to buy gifts from 'Nesters' like me! {women who are stay at home mamas who make and sell homemade goods} I've found my fav. Homemade Nester! Introducing....


{etsy shop}


Why am I endorsing this lovely gal {verses all the other zillion etsy moms}? Basically because.... she rocks! I found her shop and had googily eyes. Her stuff is Amazing and very affordable. I had several questions and custom orders and she responded so quickly and shipped fast! I'll show you a few things I bought from her and some I just thing are precious...



$10.50 {for all the Mommie Nesters out there}


$1 Handmade Rosette {I used these to make hair clips}



$6.00 Cutsie little girl headband {custom colors}


So, check her out and order some Christmas gifts from her... you won't be disappointed! {She's not paying me to do this or giving me a discount... how could I ask for a discount her stuff is already so affordable} I seriously just am in love with her stuff!

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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Votes?

I've been nominated for the Blog Guidebook's 2010 Top Blog. If you want to vote feel free, simply click on the icon below and it will take you to the site. Once your on the site you will see where to vote at the top right. You can only vote one time this round and the 5 blogs with the least votes will be eliminated.
Thanks and many hugs!

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Religious or Gospel Living?

{photo via}

I wanted to share a few thoughts that I've been learning these past few days. I've been reading "Gospel in Life: Grace Changes Everything" by Timothy Keller and it's been rocking my world!

Keller points out that there are three types of people...
Irreligious {person who completely rejects God's law and lives as they seem fit}, the Religious {obeys God's law by being really moral and righteous, so as to earn their salvation} and the Gospel centered person.

On the surface it's easy to 'raise your hand' and say that you are the Gospel centered person, I mean we believe that we are not saved through works and that our salvation is completely based on Jesus' perfect life, sacrificial death, and resurrection from the dead. However, practically I think most of us {or maybe just me?} live like the irreligious person!

The religious person tends to look to God as their teacher, example, and helper but their moral performance is serving God as their savior. The religious person seeks to remain control of their life by looking to something other than God alone as their hope in salvation. When the religious person sins they merely repent of their action, the Gospel centered person repents of their sin and of their self-righteousness.

Keller has eight examples of the Religious person vs. the Gospel centered person {due to space}


The Religious person: "My self-view swings between two poles. If and when I am living up to my standards, I feel confident, but then I am prone to be proud and unsympathetic to failing people. If and when I am not living up to standards, I feel humble but not confident-I feel like a failure."



The Gospel Centered person: "My self-view is not based on my moral achievement. In Christ I am simul iustus et peccator-simultaneously sinful adn lost, yet accepted in Christ. I am so bad that he had to die for me, and I am so loved that he was glad to die for me. This leads to deep humility and confidence at the same time."



When you fail to 'meet the standards' what's your reaction? Personally, I can't tell you how many times I have failed in my homemaking endeavors and have been in the pits. I have felt like I would never get it all together and that I was such a failure. In dealing with my lack of discipline/self-control I repented of the two things mentioned, however, at the root of the issue of feeling the devastation and the overwhelming guilt was PRIDE. Yup, I said it and it's true. I was embarrassed to my husband that I couldn't get it together and didn't have socks for him that morning or didn't have clean dishes for him to eat on for breakfast.


Yes, the sin was that the day before I should have prepared for that morning and that I was doing something that shouldn't have been done until I had the laundry etc. done {probably surfing the net} but, the shame and guilt didn't come through the lack of self-control but, came through embarrassment.


I can in that moment, repent of my lack of self-control, depend and trust in Christ to help me but, also lean on the fact that I'm not condemned before God. The religious person feels that they have sinned against God and that they must make it up to him or God won't bless them or have fellowship with them. But, the Gospel is polar-opposite. Can we make things right with a Savior based on our performance and 'making it up to Him' when we can't be saved with our works? Can we maintain or keep our salvation based on our righteous living? No, way, take that approach then you take away the need for a Savior! Trust in Christ and remember that...



I am simul iustus et peccator- sinful and lost, yet accepted in Christ!




{I don't have this 'Gospel Living' figured out... I'm on a journey and learning that my default is being the religious person that feels the need to work and make things up to God when I fail...}

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Christmas Crayons

This past week I have seen cutsie crayons popping up all over the web! I thought I would try them and see if I could make a few for Christmas gifts for the little ones. I tried it and I LOVE it! It's super easy to make and fun!

Ingredients
Silicone Bakeware {mine cost $2.50 @ Target}

Crayons {Box of 64 for $1 @ Dollar Tree}

Ribbon and jewels {craft room}

Step 1Peel all the wrappings off the crayons. This is the longest process of the project... don't do it alone! I took a ton of crayons to the youth and asked for their help before church.

Step 2 Break the crayons into small pieces {the smaller the pieces the better they will blend}. You can use the same color or mix colors. For thick crayons fill to the top of the shape, for skinnier ones only fill half way in the shape.

Step 3Place in the oven at 200 degrees for approx. 20 minutes. I checked on the crayons and stirred them about halfway through. Once the crayons are completely melted remove the bakeware from the oven. Let the crayons cool completely before getting them out.

Here's what they look like when their cooled off! So cute, I can't wait to give these to my kids!


You can also fancy it up a little with some ribbon on hand and a jewel!

Have you ladies made these before? {Hopefully I'm not the last one to know about it}




I found an article that also has tons of ideas about what to do with crayons. Thrifty Fun: Uses for Old Crayons.

I'm linking here and the following...

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Today I'm joining other women over at TidyMom. It's called a CARNIVAL and it's a great way to find other blogs to read! It your a blogger then you can join in by writing a short page about yourself {including one of your fave post} and then pick a peep from the widget at the bottom of my post and tell why you like them. {Just follow my lead}.




Hello Lovelies, welcome to Don't Waste your Homemaking! I'm Marcie the gal behind the blog and this is my hubby Matt!




At DWYH you can find Simple yet unique crafts, food recipes {slightly on the healthy side} tips to organize our homes and encouragement in honoring God throughout all of the homemaking endeavors. One my most recent posts includes a step by step guide on how to make Homemade Body Scrub {great Christmas gifts}.



I found a new friend and blog I like from the peep widget {Chic Chick Media}...

Mom on the Run

A mom's journey to eat and feed her family healthy!


{photo via Mom on the Run}


I love the theme of her blog because I do think we should try our best to be good stewards of our body and eat healthy. On this blog you can find a Crockpot recipe for Smothered Buttermilk Chicken and Grilled Sirloin with Garlic and Herbs!


Check out her site and show her some love!


Check out the peeps widget at my right sidebar {I can't link it inside the post :/}

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Hoo are you? numb. 2



NightOwlCrafting
Here are a few Q&A's to get to know me a little better. These Q's are from hoo are you.


1. Do you ever burp out loud in private or public?
I do burp lol but, I like to keep it private {blush}

2. How often do you get sick each year?
3 or 4 times {mostly in the winter}

3.Would you rather paint a room in your house yourself, or have someone else do it for you?
Someone else! I don't mind to paint but, if someone is offering, I'll hand the paint brush over!

4. If you get 30 minutes to yourself, what do you do?
Read or craft

5. Do you allow people to wear shoes in your house?
Umm... The rule is... I don't want people to wear shoes in the house but, I'm not going to be rude about it. It didn't bother me before I had kids with allergies. I've heard that 90% of allergies come in from shoes {ugh, I know}.
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Homemade Body Scrub

Tis' the Season {well almost} to begin buying and making gifts for Christmas. I wanted to share with you an EASY homemade gift you can hopefully give away this year. It's homemade body scrub! I made this last year for the women in my family and it was a huge hit! I persoanlly use this stuff and Love it! It's made with Epsom Salt so it relaxes those aching muscles and it smeels like wonderful goodness!

Ingredients

4 Cups of Epson Salt
2 Cups of Sunflower Oil
16 drops of oil {you can use essential oil or frangrance oil}
2 drops of food coloring {sometimes I add a little more}

Mason Jars



Step 1 Stir together Epsom salts with Sunflower oil in a big bowl, mixing well.


Step 2

Add essential oil one drop at a time. Add food coloring and stir until the color is even throughout all mix.


Step 3

Spoon into Jars.


Super easy and a great gift to give away! The scents I use at Christmas are Gingerbread and Maple fragrance oil! It smells so delish! This is also a great way to involve your kids in making gifts. I let both my little ones help and they are going to give this to their teachers in a few weeks!

I'm linking this.
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Saturday, November 13, 2010

Pass Along Reads

photo via Alexey

Just wanted to pass along some good reads for your weekend! Enjoy!

Anna@Hope Road Blog: Do you talk like this?
Anna from Hope Road has challenged me {yet again}. In this post she seeks to challenge our talks with fellow believers.


Justin Taylor@The Gospel Coalition: Got the Morning Blues?
Justin Taylor gives a few helps to beating the morning blues.


Courtney@Women Living Well: A Woman's Influence
Courtney encourages women to recognize their influence in their everyday situations and to use it for God's glory.


Jessica@My Heart for Home: Our Spiritual Gardens
Jessica gives devotional thoughts about tending to our spiritual gardens.





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Thursday, November 11, 2010

ESV endorsements

ESV Trusted By Leaders from Crossway on Vimeo.



Just wanted to share a video with you that I thought was amazing! This video features so many of my favorite preachers such as John Piper, Matt Chandler and David Platt and my favorite music artist Lecrae! These men along with many other well trusted leaders endorse my favorite Bible translation, ESV. Also, just as a side note my all time favorite study bible is the ESV Study Bible!
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Unashamed of the Gospel

For I am not ashamed of the gospel" Romans 1:16

Are you ashamed of the gospel? I’ve found that on the surface the easy response is, “no” but, practically it's easy to be ashamed of the gospel. Being ashamed includes not wanting to tell someone about Christ due to us fearing confrontation, ridicule or causing someone to think we're simply dumb. As Christians, we have a tendency to be ashamed of the gospel in our culture due to the new wave of atheism and the strong opinions that they are putting forth by books, interviews and debates. It's easy to think that the church prior to this point didn't have non-Christians who were intellectual and could really debate the accuracy of scriptures and the existence of God.

What about Paul? In the context of Romans, Paul was saying to not be ashamed of the gospel. Do you think he was talking to cavemen or people who weren't very smart? I'd never really thought through this but, No, he wasn't!

Listen to what Francis Schaeffer says about who Paul shared the gospel with:

He {Paul} was surrounded by the Greek and Roman world with all its intellectual understanding, yet he isn't ashamed of what he is preparing to speak about."

We also find that Jesus has warned us to be ashamed of the intellectual content of His teachings in Luke 9:26. Look at the ways in which Paul was not ashamed of the Gospel

Mars Hill {Acts 17}, Confronting religious leaders, Imprisoned in Rome.

So, what does this look like for homemakers? I work in my home... this is my full time job and honestly it's hard for me to meet non-believers especially due to the fact that my husband is in Seminary and is in full-time ministry. Yet, I'm still called to be unashamed of the Gospel. I propose to you ladies who are in the same place to pray and ask God for unbelievers that you can minister to through your home. Let's seek out our neighbors, the hurting lady who opens up to you at the store {this has happened several times to me} and open our homes up to them. Let's use hospitality to befriend and share the Gospel.

It's easy to be in our homes, serving God through homemaking to our families, and neglect looking outward and serve others through our homes. What's stopping us from making that pumpkin bread and taking it to our neighbors to form relationships to share the gospel? What's keeping us from having the neighborhood kids over and letting our family and our home display the Gospel?

Do you ladies struggle with this as I do? May the Lord help us to practically not be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!
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Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Hoo are You?

NightOwlCrafting

Night Owl Crafting has a 'Hoo are You'{how crative!} where questions are asked so we can find out more about each other. Here are the Questions and my Answers!

1. Name two things you consider yourself to be very good at.
Showing love my kids and being a best friend {to my husband}
{even though I have tons of room to grow in both areas}

2. Name two things you consider yourself to be very bad at.
1-Finding time to do everything I want to do
{working on this}
2-Remembering to take off my nail polish
{urg… I’m the gal that normally has chipped polish}

3. Do you believe everything happens for a reason?
AbSoLuTeLy  If I didn’t then I would be miserable, hopeless, confused and scared {at all times}. God promises in Rms 8:28 that not only does everything happen for a reason… but, for a GOOD reason, for those who are Christians. Wow, if I didn’t believe that then I would definitely throw in the towel when ‘seemingly bad things’ happened to me!

4. What is something you have eaten lately that you shouldn't have?
Sausage hot-dogs in the morning… I know they are super fattening but, they are so yummy!


5. Do you think the time should change or leave it alone?
I enjoy the time change… I struggle with going to bed at a decent hour so the darkness early on at night makes me sleepy and want to snuggle in my fleece sheets!

YOUR TURN: Please answer at least one question in the comment section {it only takes a few second and I love to learn about all you lovelies} Pin It Now!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas

{Here's a fav. recipe of mine; Chessy Chicken Enchiladas.}




Needed items


1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt

2 {8oz} packages of cream cheese {softened}

3 Cups of diced chicken

8 {8 inch} wheat flour tortillas

2 {8 oz} cartoons of whipping cream

16 oz of shredded Monterery Jack cheese.




Step 1
Place cream cheese in a skillet.

Put seasoned salt and garlic powder on top of cream cheese.

Once the cream cheese has started to melt, mix the cream cheese and seasonings.



Step 2


While the cream cheese is melting in the skillet fry the chicken up.

I use my griddle which is the easiest way to cook chicken {wink}

After the chicken is done, dice it up into quarter size pieces.



Step 3
Add the diced chicken to the melted cream cheese mixture.



Step 4

{lightly spray 9x13 inch baking dish}

Place 2-3 Tablespoons of the chicken/cream cheese mixture into a tortilla shell.

Roll it up and place it seam down in the baking dish.



Step 5

Pour the whipping cream over the enchiladas.

Sprinkle the cheese over the enchilades.

Bake for 35 minutes. {three hundred fifty degrees}

Enjoy!

I'm linking this to
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