Thursday, June 30, 2011

Time To Get Personal

Since moving to Oregon last summer my perspective of life has changed in so many ways. I have met some amazing people over the last 12 months. Amazing people with such deep devotion in Christ that led me to evaluate my own faith which I let go of many years ago. After a lot of conversation and thought I started attending church. Several weeks later, honestly somewhat to my surprise, I found myself with an overwhelming urge to give myself to Jesus. And I did.
I am a new believer in Christ, with so much to learn and experience. The last thing I want is to tell somebody I am Christian, then only go to church on Sundays and never truly ‘practice what I preach.’ So I am putting this out there for all my friends and family, believer or not, accepting or not, this is now a part of who I am.

As I have gone on this journey I have started to see events in my life as God’s doing, not coincidence or chance. Josh and I were meant to be here; together, in this place, in this city, with these people we have met. It has all brought us closer to God. 

Two nights ago I was talking to Josh about supporting a friend who is going on a medical mission trip to Cambodia. This discussion of giving some money to help quickly turned in to me going as well. For far too long I have felt myself become emotionally overwhelmed by stories of child abuse, malnourishment, sex trafficking, etc. only to walk away from it and forget about it. It can be so easy to separate yourself from something you do not see first-hand. I have always admired those who step up to be a voice for these people but never put myself into a situation where I can make a difference. I think it is time for a change. Two nights ago I planned on giving money to a friend so that she can help those in need. Today I am writing to tell you all that I will be going to Cambodia as well.

In January our group will be heading in to villages in Cambodia that have no means of medical or dental care. Children here are sold into slavery, the girls into sexual slavery, to pay for their families medical needs. They cannot even afford the most basic of needs, like aspirin or vitamins. How can I not be a part of this? I obviously have no medical background, but I can be there to assist and support in any way that I can.

I believe this will change my life. It will deepen faith. Open my heart and show me what it is like to really serve and make a difference in this world. It will change the lives of the people in these villages.

I am asking for prayer. Pray for a safe trip. Pray that we can reach, spiritually and medically, as many people of Cambodia as humanly possible. Pray for change.

I still can’t quite believe that I am doing this. It is so beyond me at this point. Now if telling you all this isn’t enough, I have to do something else I never saw myself doing. Our team needs financial support. We must buy all the medical supplies necessary. We have been told to pack as little as possible so that we have room to transport these supplies. I wish I was in a place where I could pay my way and be done with it but now I am asking my family and friends, in addition to prayer,  for support to help send me on this journey. If all you can offer is your prayers, believe me, I will take it. Please do not feel obligated. This is an opportunity for us all.

Support can be payable by check to Horizon Community Church with “Cambodia 2012 Amanda De Jong” in the memo line and mailed to me. If you do not have my address you can contact me through my Blogger profile.

A great friend of mine has also started a Scentsy Fundraiser for the cause. Just click on the “buy from party” link next to “Cambodia Medical Mission” She has graciously offered to donate 100% of her commission from sales of this party.  If you aren't familiar with Scentsy feel free to ask me about their products!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Mommies Funding Research

Over the last several years, since I became pregnant with my son, I got to know many wonderful woman through I was part of a birth club of woman that were all due in the same month as I was. Sharing our experiences and helping each other along the way. Two woman from my birth club gave birth to beautiful, strong, inspirational children that fought every day of their lives before passing away due to genetic disease; Hannah from MPS, and Sawyer from SMA.

Tonight, at midnight, starts the 4th annual online auction that was started by a group of Babycenter moms to raise funds and awareness to cure both MPS and SMA. Please check it out! All items have been donated by individuals both on and off this online community. They range from gift cards to handmade items. One of the great things about this auction, is that you send your winning bid directly to the research organization specified on the item. You don't have to worry about money switching hands or where its going, which lets face it gives some peace of mind.

There are a lot of great items up for bid this year! The auction will continue through July 7th. Instructions for how to bid are on the homepage of the auction site towards the bottom.

Thanks for looking!

Friday, June 17, 2011

{tasty} BLT...BAS?

I have a problem.

If its not already evident by the recipes I have already posted, its somewhat a theme, I LOVE bacon. but that's not actually the problem I wanted to talk about...

I am downright terrible at measuring ingredients. You would think if I intend to share a recipe that I would take the time to measure, but I like to make things up as I go along. And if I DO measure, its a pretty safe bet to say I don't write it down. So a month later, when I'm finally ready to post the recipe, I have no idea what I used or how much of it went where. 

This recipe however is so simple that its pretty easy to recall. So simple, that I almost feel silly posting it. But I have to. Its too delicious not too. You'll thank me for it. 

This bacon/lettuce/tomato is actually a bacon/arugula/sun dried tomato spread. and every bit of deliciousness. 

You can make the spread ahead of time. The flavors develop wonderfully. You would, at least, want to make and refrigerate it prior to starting your bacon.

Sun Dried Tomato Spread:
2/3 cup mayonnaise -I happen to have found and love this black pepper mayo. If you use the regular stuff I suggest adding a nice spicy dash of pepper to the spread.
14 sun dried tomato halves
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2-3 cloves garlic -yes, I totally go the convenient route, but fresh garlic for this would be great!

Add all ingredients together in a small food processor and blend until well incorporated. It will be a little chunky. 

this is pre-refrigeration. I wouldn't say its the prettiest picture, but it brightens up nicely while it sits.

For the rest of the sandwich you will need:
16 slices thick cut bacon
14oz Ciabatta flatbread loaf
8oz sharp white cheddar cheese, sliced
additional balsamic vinegar
olive oil

Cook the bacon until crisp, cut in half, set aside

Cut a 14oz ciabatta flatbread loaf in to 4 equal pieces across the short side. Then slice each across through the middle. Brush each piece with olive oil and balsamic vinegar and toast in the oven until lightly browned. 
You can use ciabatta rolls for this, but the flatbread gives you a little more surface area to pile on all the good stuff.

Slather the sun dried tomato spread on all 8 pieces of bread. Don't be shy. Starting with the bottom piece of bread, pile on a large handful of arugula, followed by 8 half slices of bacon, then several slices of the sharp white cheddar. top with the other piece of sun dried tomato laden ciabatta and enjoy!

Serves 4

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Oh hi there.

Did you know I have a blog? Because apparently, I didn't.

Every day that I sit down at my computer I stare at my blogger bookmark and try to talk myself in to clicking on it. I think part of me is feeling too overwhelmed, trying to work on the piles of projects I would like to do, to focus more attention on editing pictures and writing enough to sound a little interesting.

I do have a recipe to share. I will do what I can to get that posted tomorrow.

So back to where I was,
Oh hi there!