Sunday, December 25, 2016

Christmas Stollen - a family tradition!

Merry Christmas Friends!


The Bentz Bunch is full of food traditions...  I have one to share with you.  We have this each year with our Christmas morning Fruit Soup and Christmas Stollen. (can you tell we're Germans?)


German Stollen

1 package of active dry yeast or 1 cake compressed yeast
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup milk, scalded
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
4-3/4 to 5 cups sifted enriched flour
1 egg
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup currants
1/4 cup chopped mixed candied fruits
2 tablespoons grated orange peel
1 tablespoon grated lemon peel
1/4 cup chopped blanched almonds
Soften active yeast in 1/4 cup warm water or compressed yeast in 1/4 cup of lukewarm water.

 Melt butter in hot milk; add sugar, salt and cardamom; cool to lukewarm. Stir in 2 cups flour. Add egg and beat well. Stir in softened yeast, fruits, peels, and nuts. Add remaining flour to make soft dough. Turn out on lightly floured surface.

Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Knead 5 to 8 minutes or till smooth and satiny. Place in lightly greased bowl, turning once to grease surface. 

Cover; let rise in warm place till double, about 1 1/2 hours. Punch down; turn out on lightly floured surface and divide in 3 equal parts. Cover; let rest 10 minutes.

Roll each part into a 12X7 inch rectangle. without stretching dough, fold long side over to within 1 inch of opposite side to make typical stollen shape; seal edges. 

Place on greased baking sheets. Cover, let rise till almost double, about 30-45 minutes.

Bake in moderate oven (375) 20 to 25 minutes, or till golden brown.

While warm, brush with butter; sift confectioners' sugar over; or glaze as below.
 Makes 3 loaves. 

To glaze stollen use about 2 cups sifted confectioners' sugar, add 1/4 cup hot water and 1 teaspoon butter. (I put almond flavoring in my glaze)

It looks like a lot of work...but it's so worth it!!  Family traditions are our way of saying - "I love you" - Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Crismons

For Art History - we were studying Christian symbols.  I remembered my mother-in-law making Crismons for a Church Christmas tree.  They were beautiful, and it's the perfect time of year, so we had to make our own version!

Crismons are white and gold ornaments that are symbols of Christ. We had a fun time with the variety of symobls - from greek letters to butterflies, everyone contains a message of Jesus.



To make ours - I used good old Pinterest to find some patterns.



Then, I got the stiff  white felt sheets from Hobby Lobby and traced an outline.


Final step - turn them loose with gold accents like glitter, paint and ribbon. (I get coffee at this point, as to not have a heart attack about the glitter...)


We had so much fun making them, we had way too many for a wreath, so we strung them on a gold cord under our Nativity scene.  I love how they turned out in our garland!




The Whole World Needs Jesus: A Review for YOU!

The Whole World Needs Jesus






This is a beautiful book that I can NOT wait to share with you!  It is designed for ages 4-8, but all my children have enjoyed it.


This delightfully illustrated book is written by Ann Dunagan, with illustrations by Caela Rose Dunagan (her daughter).  I am a huge fan of this family!

 If you want to learn more about their ministry - visit MissionMindedFamilies.org.  They have been inspiring and equipping families to embrace God's call to the world. They offer resources, books and training to help you raise a "mission minded family."

This read aloud book is for the entire family.  The rhyming text tells the story of God's love for the whole world.  It encourages us to embrace our differences and hear God's call to GO.  The book makes the perfect encouragement for children to see people's differences - like where we live, or what we eat as something we can celebrate and embrace.  I love how this book introduces even young children to the BIG picture of God's Great Commission.

My heart's desire is for my children to have the heart of God.  This is one of those books that helps build that vision in your children from an early age.

This is would make a great Christmas gift both for you and a favorite missionary you may know.  

Excellent resource you don't want to miss!  Let me leave you with my favorite Dunagan quote:

"You can only export what you grow at home"



Disclaimer:
I was given a complimentary copy in exchange for my honest review.  All comments are my own.




Friday, December 9, 2016

Greek Columns

Art history -

Greek columns!  The easy way... with cardboard tubes.  Doric, Ionic, Corthinian?  It's your call...










We also demonstrated how columns create strength with our "challenge" - paper cup columns and cookie sheet roofs.  They did some hand's on to learn what design was the sturdiest.







Lots of fun in Art class today!

Friday, December 2, 2016

Papyrus!

In my Ancient geography class at Co-op - we decided to make our own papyrus.


This was so easy (except who gives glue/water to 16 3rd-8th graders and tells them "not to make a mess"...)

We used paper lunch bags that we tore into strips.



Then, dipped them into glue/water mixture (like paper mache) in a criss-cross pattern. We let them dry on tin-foil so it was easy to pull them off.


Afterward, we decorated our papyrus with some Egyptian stencils.



Turned out nice!