What Love Is This

  This song has been on repeat at my house, I absolutely adore it.  It is perfect as we head into Easter weekend, and the promise of a Risen Savior, Hallelujah!

You never change, you are the God you say you are;
When I’m afraid you calm and still my beating heart.
You stay the same, when hope is just a distant thought,
You take my pain, and you lead me to the cross
What love is this, that you gave your life for me
And made a way for me to know you
And I confess you’re always enough for me you’re all I need
I look to you, I see the scars upon your hands.
And hold the truth, that when I can’t you always can.
I’m standing here, beneath the shadow of the cross.
I’m overwhelmed that I keep finding open arms.
What love is this that you gave your life for me
And made a way for me to know you
And I confess, you’re always enough for me
You’re all I need
Jesus in your suffering you were reaching your thought of me
Jesus in your suffering you were reaching your thought of me
What love is this, that you gave your life for me
And made a way for me to know you
And I confess, you’re always enough for me
You’re all I need
What love is this, that you gave your life for me
And made a way for me to know you
And I confess, you’re always enough for me
Always enough for me
Always enough for me

Hugs, T

 

The Death of Jesus

 

At the age of 33, Jesus was condemned to the death penalty.jesus

  At the time crucifixion was the “worst” death.

Only the most dreadful criminals were condemned to be crucified.

The nails are thought to have been driven into His wrist, not into His palms as is commonly portrayed.

Each nail was 6 to 8 inches long.  Can you imagine?

{———————————————————————————-

There’s a tendon in the wrist that extends to the shoulder.

The Roman guards knew that when the nails were being hammered into the wrist, that tendon would tear and break, later forcing Jesus to use His back muscles to support himself so that He could breathe.

Both of His feet were nailed together. Thus He was forced to support Himself on the single nail that impaled His feet to the cross.

Jesus could not support himself with His legs because of the pain, so He was forced to alternate between arching His back then using his legs just to continue to breathe.

Imagine the struggle, the pain, the suffering, the courage.  Jesus endured this reality for over 3 hours.

Yes, over 3 hours!

Can you imagine this kind of suffering?

A few minutes before He died, Jesus stopped bleeding.

He was simply pouring water from His wounds.

The human adult body contains about 3.5 liters (just less than a gallon) of blood.

He had no more blood to bleed.

But before the nails and the spear, Jesus was whipped and beaten.

The whipping was so severe that it tore the flesh from His body.

The beating so horrific that His face was torn and his beard ripped from His face to the point of being un-recognizable.

crucifixtionThe crown of thorns cut deeply into His scalp.

Most men would not have survived this torture.

All this plus carrying His own cross for nearly a mile, while the crowd spat in his face and threw stones.

  The cross was almost 66 pounds, only for its higher part, where His hands were nailed.

Jesus had to endure this experience, so that you can have free access to God.

So that your sins could be washed away.

All of them, with no exception!

Don’t ignore the reason we celebrate Easter.

easterIt’s not about a silly bunny who delivers chicken eggs.

It’s not about new clothes and Easter baskets.

It’s about the fact that JESUS CHRIST DIED FOR YOU!

  And would’ve given His precious life even if you were the ONLY person on Earth.  Because He loves you that much!

The truth is that Jesus is the only salvation for the world.

What held Jesus to the cross was not three nails… It was His love for you and me that held Him there to endure to the end.

Acts-2-21-Photo-Bible-Verse

May today we be still.

  May we be in silent meditation, awe and wonder at the ultimate sacrifice;  God’s only Son, the perfect lamb, given as atonement for our sins.  Sins so filthy and so ugly draped across Jesus, that the Father Himself had to turn His face away from His Son.

Or was it because He couldn’t bear to see the agony of it all, lest He send angels to swoop down and save His Son from this slow and painful death?

Thankfully, this story has a happy ending: 

The grave couldn’t hold Jesus for long.  Hallelujah!

On Resurrection Sunday, may you celebrate our risen Lord!!!!!!

He died for you. He would’ve given His life if you were the only person on this Earth.

The reason is….YOU!
Amazing grace, amazing love…….please watch this, it will rock your world today.

Happy Easter to you and yours, I am taking the rest of the week off to enjoy Easter break with my family! 

~T

Here are some favorite Easter Recipes from years past:

Green Bean Haystacks
Sugar Bunny Pops
Lemon Blueberry Trifle
Resurrection Cookies
Coconut Cream Pie Bars

 

Easter Weekend

  I hope you all had a WONDERFUL Easter Weekend with those you loved most as we celebrated our risen Lord!

  It’s late, we just got home from a fun-filled evening and I still need to make my grocery list and cut coupons, so here are some pictures from our weekend….

~T  :)

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I have no idea what Pax is doing in this next pic, but it was TOOOOO funny not to take a picture!

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Easter Dinner at Uncle Dan & Aunt Gena’s house:

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Trouble makers!

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Now, look ferocious!

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Hiding from the bullets inside……

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Dale was trying to hit my lens.  Close, but no cigar buddy!

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Our poor table centerpiece, The Resurrection Garden, never did grow like it was supposed to!

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Grandma’s YUMMY beet juice dyed Deviled Eggs! Delish!

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Lettuce Wraps, recipe coming TOMORROW!   :)

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Lemon Raspberry Angel Cake: coming sometime! 

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Hope you had a Happy Resurrection Day!
Love, the 4 little Ferguson’s

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The Death of Jesus

  In honor of Good Friday, I am choosing not to participate in Weekend Potluck this week. Thank you for understanding! I’ll be back next week….

The Death of Jesus

At the age of 33, Jesus was condemned to the death penalty.

crossgod112

At the time crucifixion was the “worst” death.

Only the most dreadful criminals were condemned to be crucified.

The nails are thought to have been driven into His wrist, not into His palms as is commonly portrayed.

Each nail was 6 to 8 inches long. Can you imagine?

imagesCA8U69W2

There’s a tendon in the wrist that extends to the shoulder.

The Roman guards knew that when the nails were being hammered into the wrist, that tendon would tear and break, later forcing Jesus to use His back muscles to support himself so that He could breathe.

Both of His feet were nailed together. Thus He was forced to support Himself on the single nail that impaled His feet to the cross.

Jesus could not support himself with His legs because of the pain, so He was forced to alternate between arching His back then using his legs just to continue to breathe.

Imagine the struggle, the pain, the suffering, the courage. Jesus endured this reality for over 3 hours.

Yes, over 3 hours!

Can you imagine this kind of suffering?

A few minutes before He died, Jesus stopped bleeding.

He was simply pouring water from His wounds.

The human adult body contains about 3.5 liters (just less than a gallon) of blood.

He had no more blood to bleed.

But before the nails and the spear, Jesus was whipped and beaten.

The whipping was so severe that it tore the flesh from His body.

The beating so horrific that His face was torn and his beard ripped from His face to the point of being un-recognizable.

The crown of thorns cut deeply into His scalp.

pp-crown2

Most men would not have survived this torture.

All this plus carrying His own cross for nearly a mile, while the crowd spat in his face and threw stones.

The cross was almost 66 pounds, only for its higher part, where His hands were nailed.

Jesus had to endure this experience, so that you can have free access to God.

So that your sins could be washed away.

All of them, with no exception!

Don’t ignore the reason we celebrate Easter.

bunnyIt’s not about a silly bunny who delivers chicken eggs.

It’s not about new clothes and Easter baskets.

It’s about the fact that JESUS CHRIST DIED FOR YOU!

And would’ve given His precious life even if you were the ONLY person on Earth. Because He loves you that much!

The truth is that Jesus is the only salvation for the world.

What held Jesus to the cross was not three nails… It was His love for you and me that held Him there to endure to the end.

Acts-2-21-Photo-Bible-Verse

May today, we be still as we think about why we celebrate Good Friday. May we think of the disciples and Jesus followers, who must have been devestated today, as they wondered, what happened to their Saviour and how could he save them if he was dead?!

May we be in silent meditation, awe and wonder at the ultimate sacrifice.  God’s only Son, the perfect lamb, given as atonement for our sins. Sins so filthy and so ugly draped across Jesus, that the Father Himself had to turn His face away from His Son.

Or was it because He couldn’t bear to see the agony of it all, lest He send angels to swoop down and save His Son from this slow and painful death?

Thankfully, this story has a happy ending:

The grave couldn’t hold Jesus for long.

Hallelujah!

This Resurrection Sunday, as you awake, may you celebrate our risen Lord!!!!!! He is alive and He wants a relationship with you!  He offers a beautiful and free gift……

Total freedom from sin. 

Redemption. 

A life eternally in Paradise…..

It is a free gift, all you have to do is ask.

Wow.  Oh how wonderful, Oh how marvelous is my Saviour’s love for me!

Have a Happy Easter!

~Dale, Tonya & 4 little Fergusons

Resurrection Cookies

  So an Easter Tradition at our house is making Resurrection Cookies!  I love the Bible verses associated with each step, and the kids love to help make these!!! The end result is a meaningful Easter story and a yummy snack (breakfast treat?) for the next day.  Dale reads the Bible verses and the kids take turns adding the ingredients.

*Plan ahead, this recipe sits over-night.

RESURRECTION COOKIES

click for easy printable

0032

1 cup whole pecans

1 teaspoon vinegar

3 egg whites

pinch salt

1 cup sugar

ziplock bag

wooden spoon or a wooden meat hammer

Masking tape

Bible

Important: Preheat oven to 350*F before starting.

051Place pecans in baggie and let children beat them with the wooden spoon or hammer to break them into small pieces.

Explain that after Jesus was arrested he was beaten by the Roman soldiers. Read John 19:1-3

Let each child smell the vinegar. Put 1 teaspoon of vinegar into the mixing bowl.

Explain that when Jesus was thirsty on the cross he was given vinegar to drink. Read John 19:28-30

Add egg whites to the vinegar. Eggs represent life.

Explain that Jesus gave his life to give us life. Read John 10:10-11

Sprinkle a little salt into each child’s hand. Let them taste. Then put a pinch of salt in the bowl.

Explain that this represents the salty tears shed by Jesus’s followers, and the bitterness of our own sin. Read Luke 23:27

So far, the ingredients are not very appetizing! Add 1 cup sugar to the bowl.

Explain that the sweetest part of the story is that Jesus died because he loves us. He wants us to know and belong to him. Read John 3:16 & Psalm 34:8

053

Beat with a mixer on high-speed for 10 to 15 minutes until stiff peaks form. 

*A 4 little Ferguson reader just told me that if I would use a glass bowl, rather than metal, my cookies would have more loft!!!!  Apparently, there is some chemical reaction with the metal and the egg whites that causes them not rise as much.  Thank you for the tip, Debra!!!  :)

Explain that the color white represents the purity in God’s eyes of those whose sins have been cleansed by Jesus. Read Isaiah 1:18 and John 3:1-3

Fold in broken nuts. Drop by teaspoons on to wax paper covered cookie sheets.

058Explain that each mound represents the rocky tomb where Jesus’s body was laid. Read Matthew 27:57-60

Put the cookie sheet in the oven, close the door and turn the oven OFF. Give each child a piece of tape to seal the oven door.

Explain that Jesus’ tomb was sealed. Read Matthew 27:65-66

Leave the kitchen and go to bed. Acknowledge that the kids are feeling sad that they’ve worked hard to make these cookies, and now have to leave them in 057the oven overnight.

Explain that Jesus’ followers were in sad when Jesus died and the tomb was sealed. Read John 16:20 and 22

The next morning, open the oven and give everyone a cookie.

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Take a bite, the cookies are hollow!

Note: Last year our cookies were not done, still chewy and soft inside, so we just baked them a bit longer at 350* that morning.

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Explain that on the first Easter morning, Jesus’ followers were amazed to find the tomb open and empty. HE HAS RISEN! Read Matthew 28:1-9

What are some Easter traditions in your family?

~T

Loads of Easter Recipes: Green Bean Haystacks & Sugar Bunny Pops

  We’ve got tons of ground to cover today, as I am SURE you can tell by the GI-NORMOUS title and let’s not forget post 2 for today is Resurrection Cookies, a meaningful activity to do with your kiddos. 

  So, enough chit-chat, on with the show…….

There are certain foods that come to mind when I think of Easter. The obvious, HAM, which by the way, is best cooked in the crock pot on low all day with a can of Coke. 

No kidding! 

Green Bean Haystacks, so unique and so yummy!

Green Bean Haystacks

(click title for easy printable)

367

1 pound Bacon, Cut In Half

2 bags (16 Oz. Bag) Whole Green Beans, Thawed

½ cups Butter

1/2 teaspoons Garlic Powder

½ cups Brown Sugar

1/2 teaspoons Black Pepper

Prep early in the day: thaw bacon, cook slightly, pull from pan while still soft. Bundle 10-12 green beans together and wrap with half a slice of bacon. Lay side-to-side in a 9×13 pan with bacon ends down. Place butter, garlic powder, brown sugar and black pepper in a saucepan and heat on low until sugar dissolves. Pour over bean stacks. Refrigerate for 4-6 hours.

Bake at 350ºF for 25-30 minutes.

AMAAAZING! And so pretty too! The perfect Easter side for sure!!!!

————————————————————————————————–

  We were in charge of snacks for Destiny’s class this year.  When I saw these homemade “Peeps” at Weekend Potluck, I knew this would be what Destiny wanted to make.  We decided to get crafty and do a mixture of marshmallow shapes and sizes and do multiple per stick, rather than following the original recipe.  A big thanks to Everyday Mom’s Meals for sharing these Homemade Peeps!!!!!

Here by renamed by the 4 little Fergusons as: 

Sugar Bunny Pops

(click for easy printable)

IMG_6036

Original instructions:

Large marshmallows, strawberry flavored (We did all shapes and sizes.)
Candy sticks
Pastel colored sprinkles or colored sugar (Our favorite were the nonpareil!)
Water
Piece of floral foam or Styrofoam

Place sticks in marshmallows, to make “pops”. Dip each in water to dampen. Dab lightly on a paper towel to remove excess. Roll each in sprinkles, covering evenly. Place sticks in floral foam, standing upright to dry. When dry, place in a cup for easy enjoyment!

What we did:

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Dip marshmallow in water, dab off on tea towel before placing a bowl of colored sugar or non-pareils.  Use a mini wooden skewer/candy stick to stir around, carefully covering all sides. Place on a tray to dry overnight. 

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Carefully thread different shaped marshmallows on the stick in various patterns.

Destiny’s class will love them!  We will take them later today for the Easter party.  I think I will even let Ty, Avery & Pax share one.  {gasp} IMG_6041

  I know, I know, I am letting up in my old age.  I am trying to be more flexible at school with the whole “No Sugar” thing.  With birthdays and class parties for holidays, I can’t always  say no to sugar, right?! 

But at home? That is a WHOLE ‘nother story!

~T

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Resurrection Garden

  This Resurrection Garden is EVERYWHERE! I’ve seen it on facebook, pinterest, had it sent to me via email, and also saw it on these blogs: The Encouraging Home & We Are That Family.

  Apparently, the photo going viral is by Melissa Holt, but I was unable to find a way to link to her, so I won’t use her photo.  It is GORGEOUS!  Ours, not so much, but I think you’ll still get the idea. :)

   This was a really fun hands-on activity that all my little people could help with, and unlike the Stringed Easter Eggs, it kept their attention. Plus, they LOVE spraying it with the spray bottle very day!  It will make such a beautiful centerpiece for our Easter table on Sunday!

Here is what you’ll need:

  • Terra cotta mini pot for the tomb
  • Terra cotta tray
  • Small pebbles 
  • Grass seed 
  • One small bag of potting soil
  • Small twigs or nails and wire
  • A round or oval rock about the size of the tomb entrance (Yeah right, good luck!) 
  • Spray water bottle

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  First, prepare your tray and “tomb”.  Some people glue the pot to the tray, but Dale just wanted to use sand, and it worked great, clever man!

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Everyone is excited to help!

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Next, mound your potting soil until it forms a hill, leave the front of the tomb soil free. Pack down tightly.

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Sprinkle grass seed all over your soil.

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Try to avoid the sandy area in front of the tomb.

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Lightly cover seeds with more soil.  Add small rocks to the bare sand area, going into the tomb if you’d like. 

Place in a sunny place, (Away from your chickens!!!!) and water daily with a mister bottle. 

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   If you want, you can make crosses out of nails wired together like this: 

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Or you could do twigs like the original picture shows.

We waited to put our crosses on top because we don’t want them to get rusted. They are a special gift Destiny got from her adopted Grandma, Esther.

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This project was done 3/22 and as of today, 4/4, it has only sprouted a little bit.  I am bummed and wish we had started sooner, but the directions said it would only take a week or so for grass to grow.  I am hoping by Easter it will look really nice!

 Once the grass grows more, and can help hold the crosses up, I will move them into position at the top of the mound.  IMG_5962

This was such a fun project for us and a GREAT reminder of what we are celebrating this week….

That Jesus died for you and me.

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But death had no hold on Him!  He is risen, Hallelujah!!!!!

  Come back and see me tomorrow, I will be sharing the recipe for Green Bean Bundles, and another Easter Tradition at our house: Resurrection Cookies.

~T

Egg-citing Pinterest Craft

This is Post 2 for today, be sure to head back one post to see photos from our Spring Break! :)

   So pinning on Pinterest is fun, right?!  I pin a lot from my own site and am always pleasantly surprised how it brings new people to our little blogosphere here at 4 little Ferguson’s. 

  One of you asked me if I am addicted to Pinterest last week, and I had to stop and think about it before I answered.  I’d say Facebook is a bigger time killer for me actually!  I just pop on once in a while to pin a few things, and then I am off again.  I am pretty proud of myself for actually following through with some of my favorite pins.…

  Let’s see, there was the Organization Board for my laundry room.

T-shirt Scarves

The Banana Caramel Pinterest Pie and Coconut Cream Pie Bars.

Now, these

Easter Eggs!

IMG_5260 FUN, right?! 

Kinda. 

  Let’s just say this is one of those “Family Crafts” that turned into a Mommy and Daddy craft.  It was messy, it was hard, it took some time, but the end result was cool! 

(Except for the poor green one, the balloon leaked air all night so it shriveled as it dried…we turned it into something else, which you will see below.) 

  I think using water balloons and making little circle ones to hang on strings of lights would be cool too!  And maybe more manageable?

  Come find 4 little Ferguson’s on Pinterest!

~T

Stringed Easter Eggs

You’ll need:

1 ball of string per egg, a disposable cup and some stay-flo starch

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And a disposable roaster to put the starch in.

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Roll the balloon in starch, covering all areas.

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Have a kiddo help you with the stringing, until you realize its going to take 14 hours.  Go to Plan B.IMG_5142

Plan B: Have 2 grown ups take over while your 8-year-old photographs you and the other kids, who have clearly already lost interest in this particular craft…..

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Wrap string all over balloon in different directions making sure its tight and the balloon is evenly covered.  Then roll it in the starch again, being sure to cover all areas, and set it on a cup to dry in your garage overnight.

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Flip the egg end for end the next day, to allow the bottom to dry, too.  This is when we discovered the poor green egg had its balloon leak all night and so it shriveled as it dried.  We turned it into a nest for Chicky.

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Once its dry, pop the balloons and decide how you want to display your colorful eggs! We decided to hang them from lime green tulle with a cheerful bow. 

(Not outside, that was for lighting reasons only!)

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I am glad these are reusable year after year, ’cause it’ll be awhile before Dale and I are ready to take a craft like this on again!