Family Friends & Farm

Dried Hydrangeas Two Ways

20D0950C-6079-439E-BF57-F77D6A992D84.JPG

Fall is (almost) here and even though I love the warm summer days, there’s something so heart warming about the changing of the seasons. One of the ways I transition myself and my family into the autumn spirit is by incorporating dried flowers into my home decor.

Creating dried bouquets using the flowers you already have growing in your garden is an inexpensive way to decorate your home while also getting the most use out of your flowers. If you keep up with my social accounts you would have seen an ARRAY of garden and flower photos, and all the ways and places I use them around the farm.

Tending to my flowers makes my heart sing and putting together these bouquets helps keep my creativity muscles in good shape.

I’m going to walk you through my favorite tips and tricks for getting the perfect dried hydrangea arrangement.

  • My first tip for making the perfect dried flower arrangement starts with picking your flowers at the right time. I suggest harvesting your hydrangea blossoms after they have bloomed fully, when their color is beginning to turn, and they take on a slightly papery feel and vintage look; this is typically toward the end of summer/early fall.

  • Dried hydrangeas can be quite delicate and tend to break easily. If you can create your arrangement or wreath before they get too brittle, it’s often best to do so.

  • Once you’ve picked your flowers, trim the stems so they fit in whichever vase you are planning on using for your arrangement and remove the leafs, leaving a few for decorative purposes while they are drying (you’ll want to eventually remove ALL leaves.)

Now this next step is entirely up to you. When it comes to drying out your flowers there are two ways I like to do it.

The 1st way…

66C843A6-E403-4B05-B0AB-145843400DAB.JPG
  • Fill your vase with fresh water so at least half of the stem is covered, arrange your bouquet and simply wait until the water evaporates naturally.

  • Allow a few weeks for the flowers to dry completely.

  • Lightly spray the flowers with unscented hairspray to help them retain their shape

The 2nd way…

116D9DC7-4887-45B3-A286-4ABD43C49DA7.JPG
  • Begin with arranging your flowers, and then bind them together using twine or unflavored dental floss.

  • Secure them to a clothes line or an unused hanger so that they hang upside down.

  • Store them in a dry, dark area that gets good circulation like an attic or closet.

  • Let them dry for 2-3 weeks

  • Place in desired vase

  • Lightly spray the flowers with unscented hairspray to help them retain their shape

I hope you enjoy these super easy tips for creating beautiful dried flower arrangements, and then use them for your own home or as gifts to others.

Get creative with your vases and any additional decorations! Place these stunning bouquets in all the different corners of your house like your mantel, dining table or kitchen counter to bring those muted Autumn tones to your decor!

And, write to me HERE and send me pictures of your dried hydrangea arrangements!

Overnight Oats - Just In Time For The New School Year

A5210B02-187E-4A52-B5B4-E3E5565D78FA.jpg

The seasons are changing and that means a new school year is on the horizon.

During the school year, my sweet kiddos will be out of bed before the sun comes up and their bellies need to be nice and full when they head out the door. Rolled oats soak up milk overnight in your refrigerator, giving them a plump, tender texture much like their boiled counterparts, without all the cooking!

It’s been my saving grace on busy mornings and I want to share it with all of you! The best part about it? Well, there are several, but my favorite is that it’s fun, tasty, and full of healthy nutrients to keep kids fueled until lunch time!

This recipe makes 4 - 1/2 cup servings. Increase or decrease as you like, just remember it’s equal parts oatmeal to liquid and 1/4 part Chia seed.



Ingredients:

042C82DD-25AE-4BF6-B872-F0C3D55DBA04.jpg
  • 2 cups Old Fashioned Oats

  • 2 cups Milk (Cows, Almond, Coconut, Cashew, etc.)

  • 1/2 cups Chia seeds for a puddling like texture! - Optional

  • Your favorite oatmeal toppings
    This recipe is very basic, but the topping combos are limitless; use the ones you and your family LOVE. Some of our favorites are:

  • Bananas

  • Berries (strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, etc.)

  • Nuts (walnuts, pecans, sliced or chopped almonds, etc.)

  • Peanut Butter (or Almond butter, etc.)

  • Raisins, craisins or currents

  • Chocolate Chips (carob, vanilla, etc.)

  • Honey

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized bowl, add 2 cups oats to 2 cups milk or milk substitute and 1/2 cup Chia seeds (if desired). Combine well. (Chia seeds can also be added to the mix for their nutritional benefit and to create a more “pudding like” consistency.}

  2. Transfer mixture into 4 individual serving-sized glasses or jars. Leave plenty of room at the top for the toppings!

  3. Cover and place in the refrigerator overnight.

The Next Morning… You can be as creative as your cravings! Fruit, nuts, chocolate, you name it! Put out the toppings, hand each child their oats, and let the delicious, creative process take place! In Casa Delilah, we love these combos:

Strawberries, Bananas, & Honey
Mixed Berry
Peanut Butter, Banana & Chocolate Chips
S’mores!: Peanut Butter, Mini-Marshmallows (just a few!) & Chocolate Chips!

My kids love helping me to make this in the evening and are excited to see the transformation from dry boring oats the night before to delicious and creamy oatmeal the next morning. By giving them topping options, everyone gets exactly what they want! It’s fun, nutritious, and a great alternative to sugary cereals, with fiber, protein, healthy fats, and just a touch of yum to satisfy that sweet tooth!

I hope you and your family enjoy this easy and healthful breakfast treat as much as we do!

Delilah Logo.png











My Campus Comforts Sweepstakes

Screen Shot 2019-07-25 at 2.05.53 PM.png

We’ve reached the dog days of summer, that lazy, indolent time when the sun seems to never set, the A/C never shuts off, and school is but a distant memory… But guess what? The aisles are already stocked with dread Back to School supplies because in a blink of a puppy’s eye, September will be upon us.

Do you have a recent high school grad packing up their childhood room and nervously but excitedly readying themselves for campus life? Although I can do nothing for your heart, dear parent, grandparent, adoring aunt or uncle, I CAN help you send your newly minted college student off with a few creature comforts.

Write me a note (D@Delilah.com) and tell me all about this special person that will soon be navigating a strange town, meeting new friends, doing their own laundry, (except for those times they bring home a semester’s worth as a gift to you) and rising to the challenge of college curricula.

I’ll choose one entry at random, and send back my College Comfort Sweepstakes bundle that will include:

  • A set of the softest sheets available! PeachSkinSheets are made with a 21st century SMART fabric, they are high performance textiles designed to wick away moisture, keeping even the hottest sleepers comfortable all night long.

    PeachSkinSheets come in XL Twin Dorm, the size of most dorm mattresses, but you can order whatever size needed!

  • A $100 Gift Card from The Company Store! Use it on bedding or bath needs, pj’s or robe, a backpack or tote… smart and stylish storage solutions, a desk lamp or other accessories.

    If it’s needed, chances are The Company Store will have it!

  • How ‘bout a cozy, comfy, footed throw from my friends at PediPockets?

    Late nights, chilly afternoons, or early morning study sessions will be so much more comfortable with toes tucked to the perfect study or lounging companion, the PediPocket!

  • Music while studying? Maybe to unwind after an exam or in the evenings? I’m including three great CD’s too:

  • And, even though there will be more textbooks than the new student knows what to do with, having some lighter and some inspirational reading on hand isn’t a bad idea. I’m tucking in three books:

    • Northern Lights - My August Book Club pick, This autobiography by Kathy Parker is just in time for football season! Want to know what a woman from Jacksonville, FL has to do with a struggling football team in Barrow, AK??? Read Northern Lights, a beautiful reminder of how we’re sometimes called to the most unlikely of causes—and how, when we believe in something bigger than ourselves, we can change our own lives and the lives of others for the better!

    • Dare to Matter, by Dr. Jordan Kassalow & Rabbi Jennifer Krause. Have you ever had the feeling that the world was conspiring to tell you that you did not matter? Before Jordan had a “Dr.” in front of his name, he did. But he pushed back against that notion and has helped to restore vision and livelihoods to millions across the globe since. Rabbi Jen joins him in telling his story and inspires all of us to confront these feelings and Dare To Matter!

      * Jordan & Jen recently joined me on an episode of my podcast series, LOVE SOMEONE with Delilah. Want to be inspired??? Listen in!

    • One Heart At A Time, my book. When you’re busy living your life, it doesn’t really occur to you that much about it is remarkable… but I was so often approached and asked to tell my story, that I finally did. One Heart At A Time, is my attempt to fulfill the request of many that I share my secret to a full and blessed life. My hope is that it will somehow inspire you to follow whatever that little whisper in YOUR heart is, and you will step forward in faith and change the world, One. Heart. At. A. Time.

  • What’s missing? Snacks and beverages of course! But not to worry! One of my favorite treats - rich, buttery, Almond ROCA candy will satisfy any sweet-tooth craving! Brown & Haley also make some of the most delicious hot chocolate perfect for sipping on those fall days when the temperature is dipping and the test prep is heating up! And if that’s not enough, Jolly Time Popcorn is just the ticket after the cafeteria has closed. No one is going hungry or thirsty!

My mama’s heart is touched each year at this time as I watch parents, full of pride and apprehension, send their babies out into the world to follow their own paths.

Hopefully my Campus Comfort Sweepstakes bundle will help in some small, but comforting, way!

Enter before August 23, 2019, by writing to me at D@Delilah.com.

Include your name, mailing address, and a note about
your favorite new college student.








Red, White, and Blueberry Beet Salad

thumbnail_Facetune.jpg

Here’s a fun, festive, 4th of July salad for your holiday table. My sister made this one up just for the occasion (and because she knows I LOVE beets, even if she doesn’t!)

It calls for 4 very basic ingredients as well as a basic vinaigrette dressing made with red-wine vinegar. You can whisk one up yourself, or use a bottled one you’ve purchased, whichever get’s the job done to your satisfaction and gets you out of the kitchen and back into the celebration as quickly as possible.

You’ll wow your guests (or your hosts) when you place this on the banquet table!

Red, White, and Blueberry Beet Salad

Ingredients:

  • 5-6 large beets, peeled, cooked (you may boil or roast - your choice), cooled, and cubed

  • 2 pints of blueberries, washed and drained

  • 6-8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled

  • a bed of baby spinach

For the dressing:

  • ½ cup olive oil

  • 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 1 tablespoon honey or agave syrup

  • 2 medium cloves garlic, pressed or minced

  • ¼ teaspoon fine kosher salt, to taste

  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Make the vinaigrette dressing:

    1. In a liquid measuring cup or bowl, combine all of the ingredients except oil. Stir well with a small whisk.

    2. Drop a single drop of oil into the mixture and whisk briskly, add another drop and continue to whisk, then add remaining oil in a stream, continuing to whisk until well blended.

    3. Taste, and adjust as necessary.

  2. Place cooked cubed beets in large bowl, add blueberries, pour viniagrette over top and mix well.

  3. Place baby spinach leaves on serving platter.

  4. Layer dressed beets and blueberries over the top of spinach, then sprinkle liberally with crumbled feta cheese.

  5. Refrigerate until serving.

Enjoy this salad, bursting with red, white, and blue flavor, as we celebrate our great nation’s birthday! I hope your 4th full of your favorite ingredients, and mixes up to be a happy and safe holiday!

Thank You Farm to Feast Sponsors!

F.jpg

There is so much that must go in to preparing and presenting my annual garden gala, Farm to Feast, an event benefitting Point Hope, a voice for forgotten children.

I am so very grateful to the many many people who in small or large ways helped to make the day a success! Special thanks go to the following 4, who have underwritten a great deal of the expenses necessary for hosting over 100 guests, preparing the gardens and grounds, serving a sumptuous meal, and entertaining the masses.

Without their help, it would be very difficult to come together in this way, to support the work of Point Hope, which I am so passionately committed to. My deepest thanks to:

Thomas Nelson/Harper Collins

Screen Shot 2019-07-02 at 12.01.13 PM.png

Representing the works of over 2,000 authors and the world's largest Bible translations, HCCP is the most award-winning inspirational publisher in the industry, publishing bestselling content in every format, connecting words and people together wherever they live, work, or play.

Books like Fighting for My Life: How to Thrive in the Shadow of Alzheimer’s by Jamie TenNapel Tyrone, is her story of accidentally finding out she will most likely develop the disease at some point in her life. She founded B.A.B.E.S (Beating Alzheimer’s By Embracing Science) and through the group, and her book, gives those affected by Alzheimer’s courage and hope. If you or someone you know is living in the shadow of this disease, pick up a copy!

Many of the books I highlight as part of Delilah’s Book Club are published by this group. A Brave Face, by Barbara Marlowe and Teeba Furat Marlowe, was one of the recent ones. I also had these two brave, beautiful, and inspiring women join me on an episode of LOVE SOMEONE with Delilah, my podcast series. Listen in!

And, the autobiography, Grateful American - A Journey from Self To Service, by Gary Sinise is published by Thomas Nelson. It’s about honoring, celebrating, and serving our Freedom Providers and calls upon all Americans to to what they can for those who have done all they can! Gary joined me on LOVE SOMEONE recently as well! Take a listen.

Visit Thomas Nelson/Harper Collins HERE

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Balsam Hill

We welcome long-time sponsor Balsam Hill back to be part of our Farm to Feast event. They have everything you need not only for holiday decorating but all year round for every season.

I’ve been using Balsam Hill decor for all my decorating needs for several years now. Whether I need some really incredible Fall or Halloween decorations, one of the most realistic faux Christmas trees available, along with wreaths, swags, garland, and ornaments for the winter season, Easter and Spring Florals, or to welcome Summer with vivid faux florals and lush lifelike greenery that won’t wilt, turn brown, or shrivel when the temperatures soar and water becomes scarce….

Find it at Balsam Hill, all season long, all year long!

Click HERE to shop

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Sony/AFFIRM Films

I’m so honored to again have the support of Sony/AFFIRM Films year. AFFIRM Films, a division of Sony Pictures, is the industry leader in faith-based films including the upcoming “Overcomer” in theaters August 23rd.

Make sure you enter to win my Flyaway Sweepstakes to attend the movie premiere in Dallas, Texas on August 13!

Life changes overnight for coach John Harrison when his high school basketball team’s state championship dreams are crushed under the weight of unexpected news. When the largest manufacturing plant in town suddenly shuts down and hundreds of families begin moving away, John must come to grips with the challenges facing his family and his team. Urged by the school’s principal to fill-in and coach a sport he doesn’t know or like, John is frustrated and questioning his worth… until he crosses paths with a student struggling with her own journey.

Filled with a powerful mix of faith, a twist of humor, and a ton of heart, the Kendrick Brothers return to theaters with OVERCOMER, their newest feature following FACING THE GIANTSFIREPROOFCOURAGEOUS, and the #1 box-office hit, WAR ROOM. The inspiring family film stars Alex Kendrick, Priscilla Shirer, Shari Rigby, Cameron Arnett, and introduces Aryn Wright-Thompson.

Opening nationwide on August 23, OVERCOMER dares to leave you filled with hope, inspired to dream, and asks the question: What do you allow to define you?

Learn more about OVERCOMER

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Back2Back Ministries

Screen Shot 2019-07-02 at 12.13.15 PM.png

We welcomed a new sponsor this year, Back2Back Ministries , an international Christian non-profit organization dedicated to being a global voice for orphans. They exist to love and care for orphans and vulnerable children by meeting their spiritual, physical, educational, emotional, and social needs, so that they might overcome their life circumstances and break free from the cycle of generational poverty.

Back2Back Ministries and Point Hope are perfect allies in the fight for children, helping them to RISE UP from the circumstances they were born into, leaving poverty, malnutrition, and abuse behind. I am so grateful they decided to partner with us!

Learn more about Back2Back HERE

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

We are in our 5th season of Farm to Feast, and each year it becomes larger, better organized, and enjoyed by more attendees. This was our biggest year yet and we were met with blessing after blessing; a beautiful day, delicious food, a phenomenal performance, and the generous contributions of attendees to further our goal of building a health and wellness center in Point Hope Village, Ghana, West Africa that will benefit thousands of under-served deserving people.

We couldn’t have done it without our sponsors. From the bottom of my heart, I thank you!


Screen Shot 2019-07-01 at 4.48.34 PM.png













Cauliflower 'Faux-tato' Salad

Fauxtato+Salad.jpg

My potato salad is famous (or perhaps infamous, not sure which…) and I’ll make it for any occasion; BBQ’s, birthdays, bar mitzvah’s… but (confession session) sometimes I crave a lighter dish.

Enter this delicious “faux-tato” salad made with steamed cauliflower florets - it’s so so tasty, but far lower in carbs. It’s got everything you want for a great picnic salad except all the starch. Go ahead, give it a try!

Ingredients:

  • 1 large head cauliflower, cut into florets

  • 1/2 cup bacon bits (about 6 rashers of bacon)

  • 1/2 c. sour cream

  • 1/4 c. mayonnaise

  • 1 tspn stone-ground mustard

  • 1 tbsp. dill pickle brine (vinegar or lemon juice work too!)

  • Salt and Pepper

  • 1 1/2 c.  cheddar cheese, shredded

  • 1/4 c. chives, chopped small

Directions:

  1. Add cauliflower florets to about 1” of boiling water in large pot or pan. Cover and allow to steam until tender - about 5 minutes. Remove from heat, drain, and cool. Set aside.

  2. Cook bacon rashers until crispy, turning to crisp each side. Drain on paper towels then break or chop into bits.

  3. Mix together, sour cream, mayonnaise, mustard, pickle brine (or vinegar or lemon juice) in a large bowl. Add the steamed and cooled cauliflower florets and gently stir to coat. Season with salt and pepper, then fold in bacon, cheddar, and chives. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Of course, like most of my recipes, they’re more suggestion than anything else. If you have a particular way you like to dress your potato salad, give it a try only use the cauliflower florets instead of starchy ‘taters.

I’m always interested in what you think - so tell me if you try this, any adjustments you might make to it, and most importantly, what was the cause of your gathering and celebration?! I’m nosy that way!