Saturday, September 21, 2013

Scrapbooking- Deputation- New York States Museum!

I usually make one scrapbook page for each city or state we're in, but since I wanted to make my last page of just the fun in the park I also made this scrapbook page for our time at the New York State Museum. Both were visited on the same day, so we had double the fun that day!

Upper journaling:
We didn’t know what to expect at the New York State Museum, but it was a wonderful surprise! The first surprise of all was the tribute to the World Trade Center. Ben and I were spechless, and tears came to our eyes as we explained to our children what happend that day. Then, we went on to the lighter things like Sesame Street, a replica of the Empire States Building, and a carousel on the top floor!

Lower journaling:
The story of a deer, a penny, and a pineapple: The deer in the middle square was in the “New York animals” section of the museum. It had a small pond around it, which was full of coins. I gave the girls, who were with me, a penny. Natalie wished that Lucas and Alenna would be saved, and Alenna wished for... a pineapple?!?!? That still cracks us up.

Digital kit used:
"Little Moments 2" by Melissa Bennett at

Friday, September 20, 2013

FYI- Scrapbooking- digital kits and templates

I am trying to make this digital scrapbooking a cheap thing, so I've downloaded most of my kits and digital items from freebie kits and freebie downloads. In the beginning I wasn't very organized, and separated the kits up into folders on my computer by papers (backgrounds) and accents (accents divided into "like" groups). Then I realized that it was taking me a LONG time to wade through each folder to find what I wanted for my pages, so I started saving any new kits as a kit.
The reason why I'm saying all this is: I'm going to be posting on each scrapbook page post where I found the kit that I used, and sometimes the template also. However, some of them I cannot remember where I got them since I, unfortunately, didn't keep the information on that in the beginning (I know! HUGE NO NO!) Since I am not doing this blog for any personal gain hopefully it will be ok that I don't have the "credits" for everything I use. But, what I do post "credits" for, other digital scrapbookers can hopefully find them, download them, and use them also!

scrapbooking- Deputation- Washington Park (Albany, NY)

Last August found us in Albany, NY before a church appointment. We didn't want to stay all day at our hotel so we searched for "cheap or free things to do in Albany, NY". One of those things was Washington Park. It was a huge park with a fun playground, and we truly enjoyed just hanging out with each other for a few hours. We also caught a dress rehearsal for "Joseph and the Technicolor Dreamcoat" at an outdoor theater there at the park! How fun!

There are some moments that I like to capture because they are sweet and perfect. This time at the park was one of those. So much fun! 

Digital kit used:
"Spring Freebie Collection" by JustJaimee at 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Scrapbooking- Deputation- Southside Baptist Church, Dover, DE

We were blessed to be a part of Southside Baptist Church’s missions conference.. We met so many new friends, and were blown away by their love for missions and giving heart.  Ben and Pastor Kondracki hit it off, and had a lot of fun together. We stayed with our first “host family”- the Diego’s, and they became fast, life-long friends.

Digital kit used:
"streets of my hometown" collaboration between "Flergs", "Pink Reptile", and "The Hidden Heart" at

Monday, September 9, 2013

Argentine Empanadas- meat filling (ground beef- "picadollo")

I recently posted a recipe for the empanada shells, but what are empanadas without a filling?!? I was waiting on the recipe from my Mom, in Argentina, since my cookbooks are packed away in storage and we are on the road, traveling. As a result, I have not been able to make empanadas in a while. The last time I did, I made it from "memory" or "taste", so I wanted a recipe to give to you... Here goes! 

Meat Filling
1 pound of ground beef
3 medium to large-sized onions chopped  (there is usually an equal ratio of meat poundage to onions!)
1/4 c. Chopped red pepper (optional)
1 beef bullion cube
1-2 tsp. paprika
1-2 tsp. oregano
1/2 tsp. cumin
2 T. flour 
1/2 c. chopped  green olives 
2 chopped, hard-boiled eggs

sauté onions with chopped red peppers. Add beef and brown it. Add seasonings and flour. When taste is to your liking, add olives and boiled eggs.

Directions for making empanadas: 
Fill a small cup or bowl with warm water. Lay out empanada shells on counter/table. Fill shells with a couple of spoonfuls (depending on how large the shells are) of meat filling. Dip finger in water and run around edge of a shell. Fold shell in half, and either press and seal with fork tines (easiest way), or do a fold and press method as in the top picture. 

Bake: place on cookie sheets an inch apart. Break and egg in a bowl and mix. Brush on empanadas when they are ready to go in the oven. Bake in 375* oven until golden brown (about 20-25 minutes). Let cool for 5 minutes, and enjoy! 

Photos used from:

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Scrapbooking- Seeing Mike!!!!!

I was so excited to see my brother, Mike after 4 years! So, here's my scrapbook page about it....

Oh, how I had missed my brother, Mike! It had been four years since I had seen him when we visited Argentina. So, when I heard he was coming to the U.S. to work for a few months I couldn’t wait to see him. Since we were on deputation, we traveled close to where he was  staying on two different occasions! Yay!
We had a lot of fun together, and the kids claimed “Uncle Mike” as one of their regular tickle/wrestle buddies. We went a few fun places in Charlotte, NC with Mike when we visited, like a special learning library and a Discovery Center. We also hung out at Aunt Robin’s house and ate and played games. I thoroughly enjoyed catching up with Mike and having a few good chats. I’m so glad it worked out to see him again, and on more than one occasion!

Digital kit used:
"more or less" collaboration for INSD (International Scrapbooking Day). It was a freebie kit in a blog hop (you get multiple mini kits from each blog to form one large kit) on that day. You can google it, but I'm not sure it is still available.

Digital Template: found at

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Argentine Empanadas- making the shells


Empanadas are a traditional small pie (usually filled with meat) found in many latin- American countries. I will be posting recipies for ones traditionally from Argentina. Here is the recipe I use (from: to make my shells for the empanadas. The basic filling, which doesn't need a recipe is ham and cheese (mozarella cheese). The meat and chicken filling will be in later recipies I post.

How to Make Empanada Shells

How to make empanada dough for baking

Making empanada dough is not as hard as it sounds, especially if you have a food processor, and even if you don’t it is still pretty easy because the dough should not be overworked and requires minimal kneading. Also, these days it is very easy to find the empanada discs already made (frozen) in Latin grocery store, and even though I was skeptical at first they are actually quite good, but it also always fun to have them homemade and you can also customize the dough by adding spices, herbs, etc that will complement or contrast with the fillings.
Ingredients for 15 medium size or 25 small empanada discs:
3 cups all purpose flour
¼ teaspoon salt
6 oz unsalted butter (1 ½ sticks), cold and cut into 12 pieces
1 egg
4-5 tbs water
  1. Mix the flour and salt in a food processor.
  2. Add the butter, egg and water until a clumpy dough forms.
  3. Form a ball and chill in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.
  4. Roll out the dough into a thin sheet and cut out round disc shapes for empanadas (use round molds or a small plate).
  5. Use immediately or store in the refrigerator or freezer to use later. How to make empanada dough for baking How to make empanada dough for baking
    How to make empanada dough for baking How to make empanada dough for baking