Advent 1

  Such an exciting word! Full of anticipation, of hope, expectation, excitement, a touch of fear and of course-joy!Am I ready to jump into Advent? Probably not, but that only adds to the whole experience of diving head first into the maelstrom of this new season.
  At least the house is ready and clean and fresh, one thing checked off the list. Yesterday morning I also helped Nick to get things ready at St. Stephen’s house too. We did not quite finish so tomorrow he is picking me up early and I hope to set up the empty stable waiting, like all of us, for the arrival of Jesus.
  And today it is more Baking and Blogging, with some altering of a neighbour’s curtains as an extra task. It snowed a bit overnight, not enough to really need shovelling, but a ground cover and a reminder of what is soon to come. This afternoon I expect to bake the final two kinds of mini-cupcakes and then plan to devote time after church tomorrow to make 4 types of icing and conduct an icing marathon!
  Lots of other bits and pieces filled up my week. Sewing for the Bishop, writing references as former Team Members apply for stages and jobs, finishing up the Minutes of both Diocesan Council and Synod and generally preparing my home and heart for the start of a new Liturgical Year.

Christmas knitting continues and a little bear has come off my needles to add to the growing pile of gifts. There was also an evening of Art with Matthew as together we explored Pointillism, part two of that project will happen on Monday. And an overnight stay, last night, by Victoria, who is here today for the AGM of the Isaiah 40 Foundation.

Tomorrow we light the first candle on the Advent Wreath and at dinnertime I shall do the same here at home. This mystical and marvellous season will whoosh by so swiftly as Christmas approaches but just for these few days before it all begins there is a peace and a hush. Yes, this is truly my most favourite season!
  Food being an integral part of this special time I’ll end off with the recipe for Cranberry and Pecan Muffins that we took as our travel snack enroute to Ottawa last weekend. Fresh cranberries are readily available now and really make for the best results!
 Cranberry Pecan Muffins
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1½ tsps. baking powder
  • ½ tsps. soda
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ¼ cup butter or margarine
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ¾ cup orange juice
  • grated rind of 1 orange
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 1-2 cups fresh cranberries, chopped
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, soda and salt. Cut in the butter as if making pastry. Stir together the egg, orange juice and rind pour into the flour mixture and stir just until dry ingredients are dampened. Stir in the cranberries and nuts. Line muffin tins with paper liners and fill using an ice cream scoop. Bake in a preheated 400ºF oven for 15-20 minutes. Makes 1 dozen muffins.

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