"A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in a silver setting"-Proverbs 25:11
A while back I blogged about the little miracles happening here in Knoxville. Some of these miracles are general, but oh so important. Finding a doctors office that cares about my kids before they even meet them, a school that is just the right fit, a neighbor that goes out of their way to recommend a preschool, only never to run into them again after nearly a year. And just as many of these miracles have names. Mrs. Goodwin, Holden's first grade teacher that appreciates him for all that he is. Hollis, my friend in the neighborhood. Rachael, a fellow mom and newbie to Knoxville that shared vital information to get connected to the city. And, if it's allowed to have favorite miracles, Elaine. Favorite because she is the most unexpected, and exactly what God knows I need.
I know Elaine through a couple of avenues. Through church, through MOPS, but the way I know her that holds my heart the tightest is through Apples of Gold, a mentoring ministry that she hosts in her home. Elaine and several of her good friends spend an evening once a month serving a group of women just like me...women who want to live, love and serve deeper. Who better to teach that than women who have lived(a little longer), learned from other great mentors, and want to share all they know.
So we(me and about 20 others) walk into her house on Thursday nights. We are served dinner. By served I mean we sit down and have a meal brought to us while we chit chat and talk about the subject for the night, then our plate magically disappears and desert is brought to us, and we eat and feel all fat and happy. Then Elaine gives a cooking lesson on the meal she so expertly prepared, and then we have a bible study on becoming better wives, mothers, Christians by women who have once been in our shoes. It's wonderful to say the least, but it's not even the reason why I love Elaine so much-I know-she could have stopped at just making an amazing meal-but she doesn't.
Elaine is curious and that is what I like about her. She is a wonderful cook-like in a southern living kinda way- really yummy. She serves others by making delicious food in beautifully portioned presentations. What I love is she tests recipes, and finds ways to make them more efficiently, more delicious, more fun, more family friendly. She is crafty and goes about projects to see how they work and if they will turn out.
After meeting me she asked if I'd like to go for a walk because she was curious about who I was. She wasn't going to let time go by without trying to know me better. She is quick to laugh, and she takes people seriously. When I think about her I almost always tear up. Mostly because I appreciate all that she does with such amazing grace, but also because some how she has given me hope for my future.
So I am a student of life, and Elaine is a teacher of all things good. So like every good student, I do my homework. After every Apples of Gold I bring home a little stack of recipes. I make everything on those sheets and my kids cheer and do the happy dance. So here is one of their favorites. From Elaine, to me, to you....
Mama's Mini-Cinnis-sounthern living february 2002
2 (8 ounce) cans refridgerated cresent rolls
6 tablespoons butter softened
1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1/4 cup pecans(optional-I never use with kids)
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups powdered sugar
3 tablespoons milk
1 tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Unroll cresent rolls, and separate each dough portion along center perforation to form 4 rectangles; press diagonal perforations to seal.
Stir together butter and next 4 ingredients; spread evenly over 1 side of each rectanlge. Roll up jellyroll fashion; starting at long end. Gently cut each log into 6(1 inch thick) slices; using a serrated knife. Place rolls, 1/4 inch apart, into 2(8 inch) greased cake pans. Bake at 375 for 15-18 minutes or until golden. Cool 5 to 10 minutes. Stir together powdered sugar and remaining ingredients. Drizzle over warm rolls.
note: to make slicing easier, place unbaked rolls on baking sheet, and freeze for 10 minutes