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Women Living Well Blog: April 2011

Women Living Well Blog

Saturday, April 30, 2011

65 Days To Reshaping It All

I'm super excited to participate in this 65 day challenge to Reshaping It All! 

Candace Cameron Bure (formerly known as DJ on Full House) and Darlene Schacht released the book Reshaping It All this past January and it hit the New York Times Best Seller list! 

Darlene is going to lead us through the book as we apply the tips!  You do not have to own the book to participate. 

Let me be honest, blogging is not figure friendly.  I've put on a few pounds this winter sitting at my computer desk.  Back in January, when I first read the book I started applying the principles and making the recipes (which are really good by the way!).  I lost 4 pounds in just a few weeks.  Then I finished the book and stopped applying the principles and the 4 pounds are back!  I'm hoping this time to do a little better - and make some long term changes!

You need a change?  Need some encouragement and community in this area?  The 65 days begin tomorrow!  Join Darlene (and me) over at

Walk with the King!

Guess what I just learned! 

My friend Bethany from A Big Red Pot - is giving away a copy of Reshaping It All!  All you have to do is leave a comment to win!  So hop on over to the Big Red Pot and I'm crossing my fingers it's one of you who win!!!

10:58pm - ANNNNNND I just learned another bloggy friend Gina is giving away 3 copies starting next Monday at Chats With An Old Lady!  So check her out too and enter to win there too!!!

I'm linked to Time Warp Wife, We Are That Family and Raising Homemakers.

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Friday, April 29, 2011

Homemade Banana Bread

Janelle from Comfy In The Kitchen is guest posting today.  She writes: "I love "perfecting" recipes. Some of you may already know about the many times I have made and tweaked chocolate chip cookies in order to find out the "Master Recipe. Low and is my tried- and- true Banana Bread recipe. You are going to LOVE how moist this is. My dad was just in town visiting and this is one of his favorite desserts. I had coffee brewing and just took this bread out of the oven when they came in for a visit. His wife commented on how good it smelled as soon as she walked through the door. The children were caught sneaking an extra piece...hehehe. I pray that you and your family can have fond memories over banana bread and coffee too... save this recipe girls, it's a winner! Love to you, Janelle"

Mash bananas

Butter, mashed bananas, eggs, sour cream
Beat, then add vanilla 

In a separate bowl combine flour, sugar, baking soda, and salt- then add it to the banana mixture

Mix until just blended

Pour into a loaf pan that has been sprayed with Pam ("a prepared pan")

Bake at 350 for 45-60 mins until lightly golden and baked through center.  Let cool on a wire rack in pan for 15 mins until ready to slice and serve! 

Me and Dad catching up over coffee and banana bread :) 

Best EVER Banana Bread

1/2 cup butter melted
3 very ripe bananas mashed with a fork
2 eggs
1/3 cup sour cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
(you may add nuts or chocolate chips to your liking)

Preheat oven to 350
Prepare a loaf pan

Combine dry ingredients in a bowl and set aside. Beat butter, bananas, eggs and sour cream together. Add vanilla and beat again. Add combined dry ingredients and beat until just blended. Pour into prepared loaf pan and bake for 45-60 mins depending on your oven. The bread will be lightly brown, cooked through the center, yet still moist. Set pan on a wire rack to cool for 15 mins before slicing.

Thank you Janelle!!!!

Walk with the King!

If you are looking for more recipes or have one to share - visit Janelle's new link-up today!

You can follow Janelle on her own blog Comfy In The Kitchen or on Facebook and Twitter.

I am participating in Titus 2sdays, Tempt Your Tummy Tuesday, and Balancing Beauty and Bedlam recipe exchanges. I am also linked up to Raising Homemakers Weds. link up and Works For Me Wednesday! For more blogger recipes go to these links.


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

11 Resources for Wives Whose Husbands Are Addicted to P*rn

You my reader are so valuable.  Yesterday many of you offered in the comments section amazing resources that could help a wife whose husband is dabbling with p*rn.  

So I compiled all that you shared and made a list below - but first let me share 3 resources that I personally recommend:

1. Arousing Ourselves to Death by Dr. Moore was a blog posted today!  He writes:
The couple will typically tell me first about how stressful their lives are. Maybe he’s lost his job. Perhaps she’s working too. Maybe their children are rowdy or the house is chaotic. But usually, if we talk long enough about their fracturing marriage, there is a sense that something else is afoot. The couple will tell me about how their s*x life is near extinction. The man, she’ll tell me, is an emotional wraith, dead to intimacy with his wife. The woman will be frustrated, with what seems to him to be a wild mixture of rage and humiliation. They just don’t know what’s wrong, but they know a Christian marriage isn’t supposed to feel like this.

It’s at this point that I interrupt the discussion, look at the man, and ask, “So how long has the p*rn been going on?” The couple will look at each other, and then look at me, with a kind of fearful incredulity that communicates the question, “How do you know?” For a few minutes, they seek to reorient themselves to this exposure, wondering, I suppose, if I’m an Old Testament prophet or a New Age psychic. But I’m not either. One doesn’t have to be to sense the spirit of this age. In our time, p*rn*graphy is the destroying angel of (especially male) Eros, and it’s time the Church faced the horror of this more

2.  Juli Slattery's article from Focus on the Family titled: The Impact of P*rn on Marital S*x Once you are there - just keep reading all the articles connected to this one - it is a really helpful series!

3.Kristen Welch - a co-speaker at Relevant 10 with me and the founder of the Mercy House tells her story on We Are That Family in a series that includes a post with a plethora of resources - I HIGHLY recommend this post!!!!

Now here are some of the resources that I have not read nor reviewed completely myself but that you the reader shared in the comments section yesterday:

4.  Stephen Arterburn's book titled "Every Man's Battle."

5. Not Even A Hint by Josh Harris

6.  The Peasant Princess sermon series by Mark Driscoll -

7. Sheila Wray Gregoire blogs at To Love Honor and Vaccuum.  Every time I visit her blog I learn from her - she is wise, funny, Godly and so easy to read!  She is currently writing "The Good Girl's Guide to S*x" right now (out with Zondervan soon).  This should be a great resource!

8.  A reader named Kristi (who has 5 children - including one set of triplets!) recommended one of her own blog posts: Courageous Homekeeping

9.  Focus on the Family's broadcast of Linda Dillow and Loraine Pintus authors of Intimate Issues : listen here

10.  One reader wrote: "There is a free resource available at  for wives who discover their husband is struggling with s*xual impurity.  This is a 60 day Bible study. Most people are assigned a personal mentor to help them along in their journey as a source of support and encouragement."

11.  Some technological tools that were mentioned:  Safeeyes, K9 browser, K9 iphone app, 

Thank you to everyone who shared these resources above.  Please feel free to share more in the comment section below.   If you are a woman who feels isolated and does not have a Pastor or godly woman to talk to - please consider calling Focus on the Family at 1-800-232-6459.  They have family care specialist available Monday through Friday - 6am to 8pm.

I have to share one last thing.  One reader wrote and told me that she took yesterday's blog post to her husband and asked him what he thought...he confessed.  Let's pray for their marriage today.

Walk with the King!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

What If Your Husband Is Not Interested?

Monday's post brought up a question that I have received numerous times.  This past March, I ran this question by Dr. David Clarke - a marriage counsellor of 20+ years and author.  He confirmed that my answer was the same answer he gives and therefore I feel comfortable sharing it with you.

So the general question usually goes something like this:

Dear Courtney,
My husband does not seem to need physical intimacy as often as most husbands.  He is the one saying he is too tired or not in the mood.  This leaves me feeling lonely, rejected and confused?  Is it me or him?

And here is my answer:

First, the scripture I refer to in my video on this topic is I Corinthians 7:5.  This passage commands wives to not withhold from their husbands and LIKEWISE husbands are not to withhold from their wives...lest it opens a cracked door in the marriage for Satan to tempt one of the spouses to fall.

So if your husband is withholding from you - Biblically he is wrong.

Okay, determining that he is wrong is the easy part.  But determining WHY he is doing this is the more difficult part.  Statistically speaking, 20+% of women say that their husband needs to make love less often than they do.  So if you are feeling this way you are not alone.

Here are 3 reasons why your husband may not be as interested as you are:

1.  He is under a high level of stress, depression, in a period of grieving or has been abused as a child. 

2.  He has a medical condition or is taking medication that is affecting his drive.

If #1 or #2 is the case, you need to encourage him to talk to his Dr. about this and get help. 

3.  He is involved in p*rn.

I am sad to say that many married Christian men are secretly involved in #3 and it is affecting marriages in the bedroom.  I had one woman email me with this very question.   I read the scenario to my husband...he immediately detected that it was #3 but  I sent her back the 1,2,3 analysis above.  She confronted her husband and he confessed to #3.  A man can almost detect this better than a woman...because he knows how a man thinks. 

#3 (sorry I'm not saying the word but I know many who read have filters and I don't want to get bumped due to this post)  is rampant nowadays because there is easy access on the Internet and Satan has made it free! Ugh!  Satan is working overtime in this area and taking ground everyday.

So what if this is you and you are stuck in a marriage with issue #3?  This is a huge can of worms that CANNOT be solved in one blog post but I can give you a simplified version of some of the things that may need to happen. 

The first time you discover it demand a change because it's not the first time your husband has been participating in it!  If you overlook it you will enable him. 

First, he will need to admit his problem, secondly, he will need to recognize this hurts you and apologize to you, thirdly you will need to understand the depth of his involvement - is this an addiction and for how long?  Finally, he needs to get help from a Godly man in your church along with accountability. 

It is important that you communicate to your husband your needs.  Get to the bottom of why this is happening but gently.  Do not turn this into WW III in your home.  Start with prayer - maybe even a week or two of prayer.  If this is a touchy subject and you have had fights over this previously, write out what you want to say and pray over it.  Then find a quiet time when there are no children and your husband is not in the middle of a television show, an email or a nap and ask him if you can have a little talk.  Then open up the discussion and seek restoration.  I am praying for any of you who are in this situation right now.  I know it hurts.  God is with you - lean hard on him.  

Walk with the King,

Addendum - Thank you for your comments and additions to the conversation -some of you have recommended some GREAT resources - thank you!  Some of you have added a #4 that I agree with - when a woman has not taken care of herself, is disrespectful or makes her husband "beg" for it - he can lose his desire for his wife...but please understand that truly this just leads to #3 (or even an affair) - it may take a year or two...but even a good man in this digital world has trouble withstanding the pressure of #3.

This leads me to add...that some have mentioned their husbands have a lower drive...this may outrage some of you(I got a hate email about this)...but the reality is - God created men with a biological need to have it often ...all you have to do is look at our media and see that a huge percentage of it is ran by this man's drive to SEE the woman's beauty and respond - from comedians, to the music industry, to the beer ads to the fashion industry it is all dominated by this drive that men and women have.

 Dr. Juli Slattery (Focus On the Family)  explains this need better here...there is a physical build up of the man's seed that must be released regularly.  To understand this as a woman it can be compared to a nursing mom who has the need to express her milk.  This is how men were created...and if it is not happening in your man - then very likely #1 or #2 is the reason.  And hopefully not #3.  So, though I received just one hate email thus far...I know others could be looming - I stand behind what I have shared here in hopes that it helps just one woman get to the bottom of why their marriage is struggling in this area.

And let me humbly add that I am not a counsellor or Dr. - I have turned to them for their expertise and am reiterating what I understand them to be saying.  I deeply apologize if in your situation I am WAY off.  But I know that there has to be one woman out there this could help - so I can't take this down.  It's with love that I post this.

This post is linked to
Raising Homemakers, Titus 2sdays, and We Are That Family.

Today is Women Living Well Wednesday! It's a Link-Up Day!!!

Join the fun, do a little blog hopping and don't forget if you join below -please add the Women Living Well Wednesdays button to your post so your readers can find us here! (posts can include the topics of marriage, parenting, homemaking, finances, recipes, organization and more!)

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Monday, April 25, 2011

Giveaway - 3 Copies of Intimate Issues: 21 Questions Christian Women Have

Last year, I posted this video where I mentioned a book that has really strengthened our marriage - Intimate Issues: 21 Questions Women Have about Physical Intimacy.

To celebrate the end of our series of Putting Your House In Order , I'm giving away 3 copies of Intimate Issues.  I believe that embracing physical intimacy with our husbands is a huge key to marital success.

To enter simply leave a comment below with your name and contact info. 
For bonus entries: follow me via email subscription, facebook or twitter. 
For an extra entry: blog, tweet or facebook the link to this post.
The winner will be chosen Saturday at 9pm. 

To take a look back at all of the posts from our "Put Your House in Order" series - click around and enjoy!

All of the Put Your House In Order Girls are doing GREAT GIVEAWAYS today!  So after entering my giveaway click on over to their giveaways to enter theirs too!

Walk with the King!

This is linked to Titus 2sdays, We Are That Family and Raising Homemakers.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter Did Not Go As Planned - Some Pictures

You might find it ironic after my Saturday blog post about Easter Stress that I had a terribly stressful Easter morning! I had thought through every step Saturday night.  I felt very prepared.  I laid out everyone's clothes, packed our bags for the Grandparents house, had my side dish cooked and ready to go, had my cameras charged, Easter baskets hidden and breakfast plates and cups out and ready to go.  I had a list of what needed to be loaded into the car in the morning, including kid's bikes, my laptop and many other miscellaneous things.

I set my alarm for 6am and fell fast asleep.

At 7:40am, I woke..."what day is it?  It's EASTER?  What time is it?  IT'S 7:40 AM?????????????  Ahhhhhhhhhhhh!!!"  My alarm was set for 6am!   "We have to leave in one hour for church!!!"  (We were committed to working in the nursery so we could not be late!)

Needless to say, it was a very rushed hour of video taping the children finding their baskets, getting them breakfast, myself showered and my hair dried quickly enough to be curled - AGH!  We made it but the sweet morning time of savoring my Savior Risen and the memory of children waking to baskets and chocolate was completely lost in the moment.

Once we got to church - all went well - the babies were fabulous in the nursery, the service was hope filled and the lunch and dinner at my parent's house was great!

So here's our pictures:

It's a tradition for us to always have matching outfits!

It's a tradition to have Dad carving the Ham and all the girls yapping in the kitchen!
All the cousins getting their baskets from Grandma and Grandpa!


Sisters - even they match!  It's in our blood!

Be sure to stop back tomorrow for a new giveaway!!!

How was your Easter?  

Walk with the King!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Winner of the Sally Clarkson Book Is...

Emily at Creative Disaster


Katie with The Misadventures of a Family of 8

Congratulations!  I will be emailing you after the holiday to get your address!!!

And thanks again to Sally and  Janene for contributing the extra giveaway!!!

Walk with the King!

Does Easter Stress You Out?

I'll keep this short and snappy because I know you have a lot to get done today!!! 

Holidays can be really rough on mamas!  We put a lot of pressure on ourselves to do it all perfectly.  There's a laundry list of things we have to do to pull off great memories and a meaningful day for our kids and the pressure can warp mommies mood!

Let me forewarn you - Satan HATES Easter and us celebrating Jesus Christ rising from the dead!  He would LOVE to ruin your holiday.  There are many spiritual battles that we may face tomorrow and we need to be aware and stand firm (Ephesians 6)!

So here's a few practical things to remember:

1.  It's the tradition of being together year after year that builds security and love within the family.  NOT how big the basket is or how perfectly the eggs are dyed.

2.  Be on guard against marital strife.  Inevitably your husband is not going to help enough or is going to do it his way not yours.  Bite your tongue (till it bleeds mamas!)- be gentle with your words toward your husband - avoid having an Easter blow up - that ruins it for everyone.  If there's something that is just way out of line - pull him aside privately or save it until bedtime to discuss (unless of course someone is in danger!).

3.  Before you go to bed be sure everyone's clothes and shoes and bows and accessories are out and ready to go in the morning.  Put out the breakfast plates and bowls so breakfast is quick - you'll be in a hurry to church and might want a picture before you leave (be sure your camera batteries are charged).  These extra few minutes can make the difference between being frazzled and pleasant.

4.  Get enough sleep tonight - do not stay up late watching television or browsing blogs and facebook. Be disciplined about your bedtime tonight. 

5.  Wake up before everyone else and get your quiet time in and shower.  I know that might mean waking at 5am but trust me - if you are a step ahead of your family the day will go much more smoothly than if you are a step behind.

6.  Pray and ask God to give your family peace and joy today.  Someone could wake up sick, get chocolate down the front of their pretty dress, the Ham might not turn out right or your mother-in-law might just say something annoying again.  Remember - there is a spiritual battle we are in - pray continually that God will help you to respond lovingly and patiently and peacefully all day long!

I am saying a prayer for all who read this post today - that God would bless your Easter!  Stand firm mamas!!!

Ps. 34:3 "O magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together."

Walk with the King!

This is linked to A Holy Experience.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Today We Remember...

Pause for a moment...Be silent.

Today we remember. (Taken from Matthew 27)

We remember...

the betrayal for 30 pieces of silver

the flogging

the crown of thorns

the purple robe

the sign "Hail, King of the Jews!"

the strike on Jesus' face

the crowd shouting "Crucify Him!"

the long walk to Golgotha carrying the cross

the nails in his hands

the nails in his feet


the words "My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?"

the temple curtain torn in two from top to bottom

the earth trembling

the guards exclaiming "Surely he was the Son of God!"

On the cross, Jesus said "It is Finished." (John 19:30)
FINISHED - PAID IN FULL. All the bad things you have ever done are paid for in full by the blood of the lamb who gave his life for you on the cross. Do you wonder if you are lovable? Do you wonder if he really can forgive you of your sins? Does your guilt lie to you?

Psalm 103:10-12 answer these very questions: "He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us."

This song above has a line I just love. It says "in the arms of your mercy I find rest." It's in Christ's mercy that I have found rest in this difficult world. The blog Women Living Well would not exist if it were not for the truth of Good Friday and Easter Sunday.  I have found rest in Jesus Christ my Savior.
Have you found this rest? If you have placed your faith in Christ and believe that he indeed lived, died and rose again and have repented of your sins - your sins have been cast as far as the east is from the west. But, If you have not done this, I John 5:12 says you do not have eternal life. If you have never accepted the free gift that God has offered you of eternal life which only comes through faith in his Son Jesus - I bid you - do it today! And if you have questions about your salvation please ask your local pastor, friend or send me an email.

Happy Good Friday. Have a fabulous weekend with your family and Happy Easter!
Walk with the King!


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Giveaway - Sally Clarkson's The Ministry of Motherhood

Sally just called me --just pause right there -- yep - my phone rang and it was Sally Clarkson {squeal} lol!  I crossed my fingers that the kids wouldn't fight!!!  Alexis was doing phonics and Alex was writing out Hebrews 13:17 because we were having a rough morning with some questionable behavior lol! but we made it through!

Anyway, Sally offered to giveaway one of her books for our summer book club!!!  Hooray!

The book club begins Monday, May 23rd on with exclusive videos done by Sally Clarkson!  The book club will run through August 5th.  This is gonna be good - you don't want to miss it!

Just leave a comment below before Saturday at 9pm to win! 

 And for a bonus entry go to Sally Clarkson's site and enter to win a copy on her blog! She's giving away one copy on her blog too!  Woohoo!

Walk with the King!

 Janene from The Everyday Extraordinary just contacted me and offered to giveaway one of Sally's books to one of the readers who comments below!  So that makes 2 books that will be given away here on Saturday night! 

Anyone else who wishes to help a sister out by donating a book - just send me an email: courtney(at)womenlivingwell(dot)org!


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

How To Make Bunny Cupcakes

Today I'm featuring Janelle from ComynKitchen.  She writes "I found a photo of these cute cupcakes on the Betty Crocker website a few years ago. As soon as I saw them, I couldn't wait to make them for an Easter play date we had scheduled! The children at the play date went crazy when they saw them! Ever since, I have made them every year around Easter. I give each of my children a cupcake, individual ingredients, and I show them step by step how to turn their ordinary cupcake into a cute little bunny...they have so much fun! These particular bunnies are on their way to my son's school tomorrow...I am sure they will bring some Easter cheer to the students!"

Make cupcakes as directed on the box. This particular mix used eggs, oil, and water.

I chose Funfetti because of the colors. You can use any cake mix you like.

Place in 12 jumbo cupcake liners or 24 regular cupcake liners. Bake as directed. I baked mine for 18 mins at 350.

When cool, frost all cupcakes with pink frosting, then using white frosting, make a circle for the bunny face.

To make the ears, cut a marshmallow in half lengthwise and cut a slit 3/4 of the way down. Dip sticky side into pink sprinkles like so..

Place ears on top of cupcake

For the eyes I used decorators frosting. However, I have used sugar dots attached to paper in the past...I couldn't find them this year. The frosting worked just fine.

A jelly bean nose

Twizzler Pull n Peels (you may use black if you wish)for the whiskers

No sneaking into those jellybeans! LOL!

Cut the Twizzlers into small pieces

Here you have it...a cute little bunny

Off to school they go!

Enjoy and Happy Easter to you. He is RISEN! Love, Janelle

Thank you Janelle!!!!

Walk with the King!

You can follow Janelle on her own blog Comfy In The Kitchen or on Facebook and Twitter. I am participating in Titus 2sdays, Tempt Your Tummy Tuesday, and Balancing Beauty and Bedlam recipe exchanges. I am also linked up to Raising Homemakers Weds. link up and Works For Me Wednesday! For more blogger recipes go to these links.

Today is Women Living Well Wednesday! It's a Link-Up Day!!!

Join the fun, do a little blog hopping and don't forget if you join below -please add the Women Living Well Wednesdays button to your post so your readers can find us here! (posts can include the topics of marriage, parenting, homemaking, finances, recipes, organization and more!)

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