Fire Pit S’mores Recipe Variations

Fire Pit S’mores Recipe Variations

Manners and sanctification


October 20, 2023




With the weather cooling, it is a great time to bring your hospitality outside! Pull out the fire pit and have a s’mores party! Here are a few creative variations on the classic favorite! We are going to give this a try on Halloween, it seems like a great way to get to know some neighbors!

Nutty Buddy
Graham Cracker, Reeses Peanut Butter Cup, Marshmallow

Cookies and Cream
Graham Cracker (or Oreo Cookie!), Cookies and Cream Chocolate Bar, Marshmallow

Ginger Delight
Ginger snap (homemade is best! Here’s our favorite recipe), White Chocolate Bar, Marshmallow

Chocolate Chip Cookie (Here’s our go to recipe), Chocolate Bar, Marshmallow

Chocolate Graham Cracker, Peppermint Patty, Marshmallow

Salted Caramel
Graham Cracker, Milk Chocolate Caramel Sea Salt Square, Marshmallow

Graham Cracker, Milk Chocolate Caramel Square and Mini Mounds Bar, Marshmallow… definitely one for the sweetest tooth;)

Mexican Cocoa Lover
Cinnamon Graham Cracker, Milk Chocolate Bar, Marshmallow

Graham Cracker, Thick Cut Slice of Fried Bacon, Milk Chocolate Bar, Marshmallow

Putting on the Ritz
Ritz Cracker, Peanut Butter Cup, Marshmallow

Banana Puddin’
Vanilla Wafer, White Chocolate Square, Banana Slice, Marshmallow

PDF copy of all these variations Here!

More Hospitality Resources Here!

Welcome Home Podcast Series Here!

How to Overcome the Martha Complex

How to Overcome the Martha Complex

Manners and sanctification


Republished from March of 2017




Amy woke up feeling like she should have slept with her running shoes on. How would she ever get everything done today? She had the paper plates to pick up for the baby shower she was co-hosting on Saturday. While she was out, she needed to pick up celery and onions. Of all the nights she could have chosen to take the McCabes dinner, WHY had she signed up for tonight? Getting dinner made and delivered before soccer practice at four would require a herculean effort. Then there was the birthday cake for Jake’s birthday. If she was going to get it ready before tomorrow afternoon, it at least had to be baked today so that it would be cool enough to decorate in the morning. She thought to herself, “Maybe I can do that tonight after the kids are in bed?”

Sound familiar? Haven’t we all had days like that? Sometimes there is no way to avoid them, but when they become a regular event, isn’t it time to re-evaluate? Most of the activity we fill our time with can be labeled as “service”, the baby shower, dinner for a friend, birthday parties. We do them because we want our loved ones to know that they are, well… loved.

The re-evaluation needs to come, when we find ourselves defining life in the following terms: burned out, overwhelmed, depressed, unhappy, hopeless, anxious, angry, and resentful. What causes these feelings? Could it be that we are no longer functioning out of genuine love? Let’s consider three ways that we can function wrongly.  If this is an issue for you, I encourage you to take the time to dig deeper to find the root idols at work in your heart.


It is easy for people, especially stay-at-home moms, to feel somewhat invisible.  Most of our work is done under the radar and out of sight.  Have you ever thought about how rarely we take note of a clean bathroom, but it is always noticed when it’s dirty? Often, what we DO goes unseen. In such situations, it is easy to feel unimportant. So, we tend to be drawn to those projects and activities where our DOING is seen so that we feel productive and valuable. Of course, there is nothing wrong with hosting a shower or organizing an event.  It is only a problem when we wrap our worth up in our DOING these things.

The remedy: Remember that our worth is one hundred percent perfect in Christ (2 Cor. 5:21). We don’t need to validate ourselves.  It’s a good thing too, because on our own, we are completely incapable!


Sometimes we can feel like such a failure in one area of our life, that it seems easier to just “escape” to something else where outward success is more easily seen.  Maybe it is a hard relationship: a disinterested husband or challenging child. Whatever, it is just easier to busy yourself with a committee at church or sign up to be team mom. We begin to feel that if we can prove our self in this project, it somehow translates that things are okay in other areas. Avoidance will never fix the problems we have. In fact, they will only get worse.

The remedy: God knows life is messy.  He knew about it before we existed.  He has provided our justification (Romans 5:1).  We cannot justify ourselves. Only Jesus justifies us. As we dwell on that truth our hearts will be set right for dealing with the challenges from the right perspective.


This last area is closely linked to the first two. We can involve ourselves in projects and activities out of fear.  We may be afraid that someday we will need help and have no one around.  We respond to this concern by keeping ourselves involved in other’s lives, actively looking for ways to help out or serve so that one day when we need help, they will hopefully remember all that we’ve done for them. This really at its core, is an attempt to take matters into our own hands.

The remedy: Remember who holds the ocean in his hands.  When we are in Christ, he has us covered (Col. 3:3). We don’t have to fear the future (Matthew 6:25-34).

When we find our validation, our justification and our protection in God alone, first and foremost, then can truly love and serve others. Our doing becomes a joyous “Thank you!” to God for all the riches we have in Him. This is how we can overcome the Martha Complex.

Practical Rhythms of Hospitality

Practical Rhythms of Hospitality

Rhythm of Hospitality


January 13, 2023



As we focus on priorities and rhythm for our families, it is a great time to include thoughts on hospitality. I have been reading The Simplest Way to Change the World, by Dustin Willis and Brandon Clements. I highly recommend it! In fact, here’s a link to purchase.

The authors encourage with these words, “The goal is for hospitality to be so integrated into your life that it becomes second nature… Just as we need to be intentional about meeting people, we need to be intentional about inventing new rhythms that foster hospitality.”

I have been thinking of how to practically increase our families practice of hospitality. I love the mindset of making it second nature. One of the ideas Dustin and Brandon suggest is a Saturday morning neighbor breakfast. Invite neighbors to stop by for some pancakes and bacon, you can keep it as simple or as extravagant as you want. I think coffee is a definite must:) I have been talking with my family about giving this a try. I’ll report back once we carry it out!

The book Simplest Way to Change the World has a whole chapter devoted to several ideas for making hospitality apart of your weekly rhythm. Here are five of my favorites: Taco Tuesday, Game Night, Neighborhood Cookout, Book Club, Soup and Salad Saturday. I am excited to find more ways to make hospitality a part of our family rhythm!

Five Ways to Love your Husband

Five Ways to Love your Husband

wife kissing husband


July 15, 2019



Listen to him. Surprise! Men need to talk things through, too. If we’re not careful, conversations with our husbands can look like a game of wack-a-mole where we are beating down every word that comes out of their mouths! Whether it’s a challenge at work or a suggestion he has about how to re-organize the kitchen: hear him out.

Don’t over analyze him.  This one is especially hard for us to do.  We can make the mistake of thinking that there is some underlying thing going on in his mind.  The plain and rather profound truth is that men are simple, what you see is generally what you get.  I know it’s hard to understand because we ourselves are so complex and complicated, but it’s true. Embrace it!

Make time for him.  We are busy running kids here and there, meeting friends for coffee, participating in ministry events. We often  over-fill our calendars.  This leaves little or no time to just be with our husbands.  This can have the effect of them feeling neglected. But we need to be available to them! This involves intention on our part.

Pray for him.  This is a given, I know, but so easily overlooked. I know I am guilty of letting this slip off of my priority list. What better way to bless our husbands than to call on the only One who knows them perfectly and wants what is best for them. Daily, we need to bring our husbands before the Lord and ask for protection over their health, their heart, wisdom in their work, and leadership of the family.  Pray that God will use your husband mightily in ministering to others in his life. One of the best books I’ve read on this is The Power of the Praying Wife.

Finally, tell him the truth.  What I am referring to here is reminding him of the truth of the Gospel. We are all surrounded by discouragement and stress everyday.  We all need to be reminded of our identity in Christ as it provides the basis for living for him!

Practical Tips for Family Worship with Littles

Practical Tips for Family Worship with Littles

toddler bible time


May 23, 2019


Family Worship

Somedays you find yourself asking yourself “Is this making any difference?”  It is!  Press on friend.  Here are some practical tips to help.

1- Music!  You don’t have to be a professional or even sing on key, kids love it.  Singing, dancing using homemade instruments, gives little ones an excitement for family devotion time. If you really don’t feel like you can do this on your own, play a CD and sing to a song or two.

2- Flannel board sets. A great interactive tool that children love.

3- Printable coloring pages. There are tons of free websites that have many to chose from based on the topic you happen to be discussing.

4- Acting out what is read.

5- Quiet toys saved just for family devotions… play sand or playdough, anything that can keep little hands busy.  The bonus to these is that they can mold characters or other objects related to what is being read.

6- Carpet squares or rugs.  When our kids were all little we used colored rugs for each child, this provided a boundary between them to avoid fights and also gave them personal space which they appreciated.

7- Prayer cards. Eric has written about our prayer card box, you can read the article here.  The little ones look forward to choosing a person to pray for at the end of each reading time.

8- Memorize scriptures.  Little kids love repetition, focus on a verse or two each week, reading it a couple of times a day, you will be amazed how quickly they will pick it up.  They love putting motions to the words.  We bought a simple sign language book and learned signs for some of the words.

9- Find the right time for your family.  Don’t fall prey to doing things like others do.  What works for one family may not work for you.  You may find that reading right after breakfast is best when everyone is fresh.  Maybe dad leaves too early and you need to use the dinner hour.  You may find that including it in the bedtime routine works best for you.  Our family has tried all of the above!  Sometimes the time needs to be altered for a season due to other activities going on.

10- Never give up!  Winston Churchill had it right!  You will face discouragements, kids will run wild some days more than others.  You will get out of practice and not read for a week or even a month.  Don’t count it as a failure.  Success is a process not an event.  When things don’t work, change plans and keep going.  I have seen this success, Eric has faithfully endeavored through all of these years… many of them with more kids under the age of five than over.  They were crazy times, but he stayed with it. Our family devotions are second nature because the practice has been so established.

Have tips that weren’t mentioned? Please share below in the comments!

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