Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ronda from...The Family Table, Guest SkyMom's "Pulled Pork!"

Dear SkyMoms,

Hope you all are doing well! I love back to school and all of the fun that goes along with a new school year. Things can certainly get hectic and getting food on the table quickly can be hard. Menu planning is the ultimate time saver once you get a good system in place. The first thing I suggest is to keep a master calendar of events. This includes all planned weekly activities. Then, go back and fill in menu ideas taking into account the type of evening scheduled.  Quick fix meals in the crockpot save time and money plus they are invaluable to the busy mom. Here is a slow cooker favorite…

Pulled Pork

1 3-5 pound pork shoulder

1 onion

1 cup chicken broth

1 cup apple juice

Salt and pepper to taste

Season pork generously with salt and pepper. Over high heat, brown pork on all sides. I have the all-clad cooker with the cast iron insert which is such a time saver! Throw in the onion, pour in broth and apple juice. Transfer insert to slow cooker and cook pork, fat side up, on low heat for 6-10 hours.  I usually start my roast at 6 am and we eat around 6 at night. It is always perfect.  The first night, I slice the pork and serve with mashed potatoes and roasted veggies. I drizzle a little au jus over the potatoes and pork. Yes, this can be fatty, that is what makes a tender, pull apart roast. When carving, it is easy to carve out big fatty pieces.

When done with dinner, take left over roast and chop it up, careful to pull out the big fatty parts. Put in a Tupperware and serve two nights later as BBQ pulled pork sandwiches. When you are ready to eat, take meat and mix with your favorite bbq sauce. Heat over low heat until nice and hot. Serve on a toasted bun with corn on the cob. By this time, we have usually polished off the entire roast!

I’d love to hear your favorite slow cooker recipes! If you have any easy ideas to share with the group, feel free to post in the comment section.

Many blessings and happy cooking!

Ronda from… The Family Table

Monday, August 29, 2011

Tips from Tori "The Tree ~ Psalm 1"

The Tree

Psalm 1 
Reminds me that the Lord sees those who trust in Him as trees planted by the rivers of water. Strong, solid, unmoving, and unchanging in spite of the storms of life, because they are rooted in Him.
I couldn’t help but wonder about the time when myself or our family is gone from this earth and there is no visible evidence that we have even been here. What will remain to tell others that I lived? It gives me great joy to know that something will remain. The root system of my faith and our families faith will keep on growing. As I have shared it with others, and they with still others, my faith and hope will be here when I am gone.
Lord, thank you that the faith I live by today is something that can outlast my human life. Thank you for the joy of sharing it with others, and helping them develop roots in You and Your Word.
Tori Miller
Sky Ranch SkyMom Ministry Director

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Prayer Encouragement: "Sweet Fragrance" by Guest SkyMom, Terrie Chevaillier

Sweet Fragrance

For we are to God the fragrance of Christ
among those who are being saved
and among those who are perishing.
2 Cor 2:15

A few days ago, we prayed that our children
would enter the narrow gate that leads to
life as they start school and find themselves
tempted to take the most popular road. 
As we encourage them and teach them just how that popular road looks,
let’s also encourage them to be a fragrance that is so pleasant
that many would join them on the road that leads to life.
Dear Father, thank you that because of Christ, we are saved.
And Lord, you know just how many at
My child’s school are perishing.
Your Word says that we not only smell sweet to those who are yours,
but also to those who haven’t accepted you yet.
They might want to run from the scent as it brings conviction,
but I pray those that don’t know you would see something different
in my child and desire it.  A fragrance so sweet
That other’s will notice and ask them….”There is something different about
you and I want to know what it is….please tell me.”

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Lisa Life Lesson ~"The Mom Filter"

The Mom Filter

Do you have one?  You know, the filter needed when things aren't quite "mommy perfect" but are probably the best a 10 year old can do?  When I watched "The Help" recently, I was reminded of how much our words can edify or destroy.  Our kids look to us for approval and edification.  One of the hardest parts of being a mom is looking at our kids as God's child versus our own.  When we look in the mirror, we sometimes don't like what we see.  Our children shouldn't be a reflection of us.   When we see our own tendencies in our children, we get real negative.  Prayer helps us see our children through the eyes of Christ.  When you don't use your God given filter (The Holy Spirit), ask for forgiveness and repent.  Pray for a strengthening of the filter.  The closer we are to Christ, the more we look like Him and the less we look like ourself.  Our children are a beneficiary of our personal relationship with Christ.  

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in Your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer.
Psalm 19:14

Lisa Clark
Sky Ranch SkyMoms Parenting Mentor

Sunday, August 21, 2011

A Mom's Prayer On the First Day of School

Dear SkyMoms, 

Well, tomorrow I will be dropping off a high schooler (9th) for the first time 
and middle schooler for the last time! (8th)  :(! 

The backpacks are packed, 

the clothes are laid out,
the lunches are made, 

the morning devos and meds are even ready to go, 

The alarm clocks are set and we have together decided the 15 year old should be the first drop off in the route since she is currently doing the parent taught drivers ed and could sometimes drive herself to school!! 
 (of course this might mean we need to leave a few minutes even earlier than originally planned :)!!!

Now we are all just relaxing and enjoying the last few hours of Summer... So, Let the Prayers begin...it is all in the Lords Hands...He knows what is BEST for our children.  

Sky Ranch will be praying for all the campers as they enter back into their various schools and we pray they remember everything they learned this summer at camp and are strong and can carry out the 
into their school mission fields.
SkyMoms have a great first day of drop off :)

Tori Miller
Sky Ranch SkyMom Ministry Director

Friday, August 19, 2011

Prayer Encouragement: "Narrow Gates and Wide Gates!" by Guest SkyMom, Terrie Chevaillier

 Narrow Gates and Wide Gates

Enter through the narrow gate.
 For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction,
 and many enter through it.
But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life,
and only a few find it.
Matthew 7:13-14

Two gates: One is narrow and one is wide.
one leads to destruction and one leads to life.
many enter one and few choose the other.
As your kiddos start back to school,
they will be see both gates that lead to both roads…..
many travelers will be on the broad route. 
It will probably be the most popular.
But, there is another that leads to life..
Let’s pray they choose that one.
Dear Father, you know what my child is about to enter into.
Thank you that you are their gatekeeper and like
sheep that have gone astray…you will go to the ends of the earth to get that one and
bring him back to your flock when he strays.  I pray that my child wouldn’t stray,
But Your Word says that the path to life is narrow and You
know just how tempting the popular road is
in their circles of life.  It gives me comfort that You know Lord.
Let there be an alarm that rings so loud inside of them
when they are heading down the destruction path.  Your Spirit leads us to truth and life.
I trust You….a loving father, to help them find it.
~Terrie Chevaillier, Guest SkyMom Prayer Encourager

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Ronda~ The Family Table, Guest SkyMom Food Writer brings us "Buttermilk Pancakes!"

Hello SkyMoms,

Have you been having some fun in the kitchen with your families? If not, make Saturday morning the time to get together and make a big family breakfast.  Turn the TV off and devote at least an hour together having a leisurely meal. Stay in your jammies and be comfy. Set the table with placemats, add a candle, set out the nice dishes or put out some flowers.  Make the meal special and pretty soon you will be making some very special memories. 

I am going to share with you our absolute favorite weekend recipe. Buttermilk Pancakes. If you have never tried to make homemade pancakes, you are in for a treat. They are so delicious and take minutes to throw together. They do not have preservatives or additives like so many prepackaged mixes and seriously they are too easy not to make.

Don’t forget to do that cluster cooking I was talking about a few weeks ago. Get out those Ziploc bags and your black sharpies. Make up a half a dozen baggies of dry mix and when you are sleepy eyed at the crack of dawn, all you have to do is add the wet ingredients. What could be simpler?

Buttermilk Pancakes

1 cup flour
1 T sugar
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
¼ tsp salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 T vegetable oil
1 egg
Cooking spray or butter

Add dry ingredients to a bowl. Add wet ingredients to a big measuring cup. Combine wet to dry until just combined. Don’t over mix please. Heat a cast iron skillet on low heat. Spray with cooking spray or add some butter to the griddle. Scoop ¼ cup pancake mix to griddle and wait for bubbles to show. Then flip. Cook until done and add to a warm platter. This recipe makes about 7-9 medium pancakes. For our family of five, we double the recipe and have a few left over for later.

***After you add the ¼ cup mix to the pan, add some fixings if so desired. Pancake tip: cook pancakes over low heat to ensure they cook through and remain a nice golden brown. 

1.     Sprinkle with shredded coconut and chopped macadamia nuts.
2.     Sprinkle with diced banana and chopped pecans.
3.     Sprinkle with chocolate chips.
4.     Sprinkle with diced banana and chocolate chips.
5.     Sprinkle with lemon zest and fresh blueberries and dust with powdered sugar.
6.     Sprinkle with diced strawberries and finish with a little whip cream.
7.     Leave plain :)

Serving suggestion 1: Serve with warm, pure maple syrup, chicken apple sausages and sliced fruit. Round it out with juice and a pot of steaming hot coffee. 

Serving suggestion2: When you find yourself with a house full of kids on a weekend morning, have a pancake buffet. Lay out small dishes of all the fixings. Have the kids go through the line and add their own toppings as you cook the pancakes. Have platters of fruit and chicken sausages or bacon and jugs of juice. 

Warning***they may not leave! :)

Lemon Blueberry Pancake

Banana Pecan Pancake
Banana Chocolate Chip Pancake
I wish you all many blessings!
Ronda from The Family Table

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Lisa Life Lesson ~"Discipline Isn't Cool"

"Discipline Isn't Cool"

As children grow up, discipline gets more difficult for many reasons.  We let things like whether or not our kids will like us get in the way of discipline.  Understanding the very short window of opportunity we have to truly disciple and discipline our children will fix that problem usually.  But it still exists.  Discipline becomes uncomfortable as they grow older.  We have to deal with situations we're, frankly, not comfortable with.  So, sometimes, we just let it go for fear of getting out of our comfort zones.  Friends, clothes, relationships, cheating, curfews, movies, tv, technology...and the list goes on of things we just don't want to deal with on a daily basis.  So, we put it off.  I have to force myself to get into the discipline game many days.  I see the big picture and not the minutia of the day.  But it's in the small things that lie the teaching opportunities and result in discipleship.  Force yourself to get in the game.  Deal with problems or "opportunities" as they arise and keep things on the table.  

I can look back at my life, and still today, and thank Jesus for loving me enough to discipline me.  Can't you?  Our children are looking to us to love them just as much.

"No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful.  Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it." 
 Hebrews 12:11

Lisa Clark
Sky Ranch SkyMoms Parenting Mentor

Monday, August 15, 2011

2011 Panoriffic ...from your Executive Director & CMO Chris Witt!

I just had to share this amazing email that Chris Witt, our fabulous Executive Director & CMO shared with our staff Saturday afternoon....we are so blessed to be apart of such a great organization that the Lord has clearly been apart of this Summer!
"Well, Panorama 2011 is in the books. Staff are cleaning camp and retreat guests are about to start rolling in today. Soon this place will be crawling with School Programs kids.
One more week in Colorado though! Military Family Camp! SO keep praying!

Just so you know 866 kids decided to start their journey with Jesus this summer at Sky Ranch. That is a benchmark. Never seen it. I guess God decided to grant us a special dose of mercy, grace, and hope. 
Maybe it was because the Bible X was a focused look at God and what He does. We probably won’t know this side of heaven. But I won’t question it. I will just say thanks to all of you for working together to set the table for what God has done. We weren’t perfect, but He certainly was.

So most of all, thank you Father God. You have mercy on whom You will have mercy. Praise Your name.

Praise Yaweh who is unique.
Praise Jehovah who is flawless.
Praise El Elyon who is supreme.
Praise Jehovi Rohi who is good.
Praise Emmanuel who is enough.

Chris Witt
Executive Director / CMO
Sky Ranch 
Texas | Colorado | Oklahoma 
Thank you SkyMoms for all you have done to foster great parenting with your kiddos!  
I know for many of you today marks the first day back to school!  
We will begin praying for you, and we thank you for investing in Sky Ranch... and allowing us to invest in YOU and your family and your camper...we love you!!  
Tori Miller
Sky Ranch SkyMom Ministry Director 

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Be apart of the Ripple Effect of Sky Ranch...it doesn't have to stop just because Summer Camp ended today....

Choose to be apart of the Ripple Effect of Sky Ranch...it doesn't have to stop just because Summer Camp ended today.... 

The Ripple Effect from Sky Ranch Camps on Vimeo.
">width="400" height="225" frameborder="0">The Ripple Effect from Sky Ranch Camps on Vimeo.

Our Family has been a part of the ministries of Sky Ranch for several years now and have had the opportunity to attend Summer camp in Van, attend Family Camp in CO, Mother Daughter Retreats, serve as Camp Hosts in CO, and has been involved with the SkyMom’s ministry directing the program.  
With all these programs our two teenage daughters have experienced spiritual growth beyond what we could’ve imagined.  Through the summer camp program combined with the COR leadership program we have seen a transformation of spiritual maturity that has blossomed.

Because of the impact the ministry of Sky Ranch has had on our children’s lives, we made a decision to participate in yet another way…God placed it in our hearts to support the scholarship program…we want to give kids that would not have the opportunity to do so otherwise, the chance to come and experience what Sky Ranch has to offer.  We want to become a part of the ripple effect.

Jesus said, “Let the children come to me…do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God is for such as these…many kids like Sarah and Zeeke in the video are hindered by circumstances beyond their control.

We’d like to invite you to join us and the many others that have opened their eyes to the possibilities, to participate in the ripple effect by supporting the scholarship program

Will you be apart of the Ripple Effect Of Sky Ranch with us?

Tori Miller and Family
Sky Ranch SkyMom Ministry Director

Friday, August 12, 2011

Tori Miller ~ Forgiven Mark 11:25


I was reminded this week while watching my children go through some hard life lessons that our children sometimes forgive others much faster than we do!

Thank you Sky Ranch for helping to reinforce this family value and ingrain it into the culture of campers you have seen this summer...this could forever change our society if we could all... JUST FORGIVE!!!

Wow, what a life lesson for ME to be quickly humbled by.  Lord, forgive me for my stubbornness and help me to quick to forgive others with childlike faith! 

"If you have anything against someone, forgive—only then will your heavenly Father be inclined to also wipe your slate clean of sins."

Mark 11:25

Jesus was matter-of-fact: "Embrace this God-life. Really embrace it, and nothing will be too much for you. This mountain, for instance: Just say, 'Go jump in the lake'—no shuffling or shilly-shallying—and it's as good as done. That's why I urge you to pray for absolutely everything, ranging from small to large. Include everything as you embrace this God-life, and you'll get God's everything. And when you assume the posture of prayer, remember that it's not all asking. If you have anything against someone, forgive—only then will your heavenly Father be inclined to also wipe your slate clean of sins."

Mark 11:25

The Message 

Tori Miller
Sky Ranch SkyMoms Ministry Director

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Ronda~ The Family Table, Guest SkyMom Food Writer brings us "Mexican Red Quinoa Salad"!

Hello Sky Moms,
Today at The Family Table, I am going to share with you an old family favorite, Mexican Quinoa Salad. This recipe uses a little known grain, Quinoa.  Prounced “keen-wa,” Quinoa is an ancient and delicious grain with a very mild flavor.  When mixed with a big, beautiful salad, it adds a protein punch to keep you going throughout the day. With the summer days being so hot, it makes a perfectly complete meal without having to heat up the kitchen.

Loaded with flavor, crunch, tang, zip and zest, this Mexican salad is bursting with yummy goodness. Talk about antioxidant overload! Give yourself plenty of time to do the prep for this one.  I can assure you, it is well worth the effort.   I like to cut the ingredients and keep them in individual Ziploc containers. When I am ready to make the salad, just toss the ingredients together.

This recipe makes a huge batch.   It holds in the refrigerator for several days making it ideal lunchbox food.  Presented on a large white platter, it makes an impressive buffet addition. You can easily make this salad for four or twenty by increasing or decreasing all of the ingredients. For the dressing, I make a big batch separately then drizzle over the salad to taste. Keep tasting and add more salad dressing ingredients as needed. You can’t go wrong with this one.

Mexican Red Quinoa Salad

1 cup red quinoa
2 cups water
1 bunch watercress, rinsed and all the leaves pulled from the stem
2-3 cups cabbage, shredded (buy the pre-shredded bag)
2-3 cups carrots, shredded (buy the pre-shredded bag)
1 bunch cilantro, washed and all the leaves pulled from the stem
1 small bag frozen, organic, sweet white corn
1/2-1 diced red pepper
1/2 diced jicama
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2-1 red onion, diced
3-5 green onions, diced, both white and green parts
1 cucumber, diced, leave skin on for extra nutrients, either Traditional or English work fine
1 bunch radishes, sliced and quartered
1 bag cooked, black beluga lentils from Trader Joes OR 1 can drained and rinsed black beans
2-4 limes, lemons or combo, juiced
1/2-3/4 cup olive oil
5 cloves garlic, minced

**honey to taste if you like a sweeter dressing.
salt and pepper to taste
avocado slices for garnish
tortilla chips for garnish

Additions per your taste: For those that like a punch, dice a seeded jalapeno pepper or add one teaspoon of cayenne pepper to the dressing.

Cook quinoa in water according to package instructions.  Add all the ingredients to a big bowl.  Mix olive oil, lime, cumin and minced garlic. Pour over salad and toss well. Taste and adjust lime juice, olive oil, salt and pepper.  Garnish with slices of avocado and/or high quality tortilla chips.

Note: Where recipe calls for 1/2-1 of some ingredient, feel free to judge based on the size of the produce on hand, how much to use. If I get a huge red bell pepper, 1/2 may be enough.  If it is small, I may use the whole thing.  Accordingly, if I am making the salad for a buffet, I will add two whole red bell peppers and increase the rest of the ingredients as well.  It is a pretty full proof recipe.

For a nice luncheon, make a big pitcher of iced, mint tea with lemon slices and serve with homemade chocolate chip cookies. Bon Apetit!

Psalms 128:3-4 (NIV)
“Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house;  your children will be like olive shoots around your table.  Yes, this will be the blessing  for the man who fears the LORD.”

**Thank you Terrie Chevaillier for pointing me in the direction of these verses!

Ronda,  The Family Table Guest SkyMom Food Writer

Monday, August 8, 2011

Prayer Encouragement: "Exceedingly, Abundantly, and Above All!" by Guest SkyMom, Terrie Chevaillier

Exceedingly, Abundantly, and Above All!

Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly
abundantly above all that we ask or think,
according to the power that works in us.
Ephesians 3:20

Exceedingly:  to an unusual degree.
Abundantly: more than adequate; over sufficient.
Above: a higher place.

As you start to pray, think about that one thing in each of
Your children, that consumes your thoughts or emotions
regarding need for answered prayer……Let’s pray.
Lord, I thank you that you can take this area that threatens
to overtake me with worry, doubt, and anxiety.  I want to
give it to you and acknowledge that you are the One
who can do way more than I can in my own strength, pressure, or
time.  Give me a vision for what you want to do and how
you want to grow my child in this area.  I know how awesome
my thoughts are in regards to answered prayer for them, but
I cannot even begin to imagine what you have in store for them….it’s way
better than I can even dream.  As I lay this down, I will watch
as You Father…not me in my strength, go about doing exceedingly, abundantly, and above all
that I can ask or imagine.

~Terrie Chevaillier, Guest SkyMom Prayer Encourager