Archives for April 2012

Summer Deals from my Mark Store

Hi friends!  The new summer line is finally available for purchase at my online Mark store…  So you can now snag these fun items anytime!

Laura’s Mark Store

You can get free shipping on your order when you enter the coupon code WELCOME

and if you’ve previously placed an order with me you can enter the code MARKFS30 for free shipping off your $30 order.

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This adorable Spring blazer is $48

Rock of Ages Necklace $24

Fabulous Straw hat $26

Hamptons Bag $39

Hamptons Eau De Toilette $20

Pretty Luxe Ring $18

Locks In Place Hairspray (coming soon) $14

Mark Sunny Sandals $32

Mark Maxi Dress $35

Mark Aviator Shades $14

There are plenty of other cute clothes and accessories available also as well as some ‘last chance’ clearance items.  There are some great deals to be had and if you need help with anything let me know!  🙂

I had an amazing weekend in the Seattle are at the Fashion Focus Show and got to meet a lot of wonderful people in the hair industry and I learned a TON of new things from some pretty incredible artists and I’m truly inspired!  Tomorrow I will share photos and videos from my trip and tell you all about the fun!  🙂

Recipe Exchange

So I thought it would be fun to do a little recipe exchange with you guys and have y’all leave a comment with some of your go to no fail recipes…

I am going to contribute a delicious recipe from Giada De Laurentiis that I’ve never had a complaint about and it’s stock full of delicious veggies that I can get by my children because they think it’s a meat sauce.  It happens to be vegetarian which I also love because before this recipe, I never knew what to make for friends who don’t eat meat!

I’m also going to post a yummy easy toffee recipe I got from my beautiful friend Joy…  I believe she got it from Better Homes & Gardens but it is super easy and delish and it makes a wonderful gift.  I’ve heard it also freezes well although I’ve never tried.  🙂

I am enjoying my evening in Seattle and am very excited for the hair show tomorrow and Monday.  Can’t wait to post pictures.  I am enjoying the quiet in my hotel room tonight, however, I miss my husband and kids madly and can’t wait to get home and see them on Monday!!!!!  For now, I will bask in the quiet presence of our amazing Creator!  He only knows how desperately I need this time with Him and I am going to soak up every last second of it!

Be still, and know that I am God.  -Psalm 46:10

Ingredients

  • 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes
  • 3 cloves garlic, whole
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1/4 cup toasted pine nuts
  • 1 pound rigatoni pasta
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh mint leaves
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

In a large bowl combine the eggplant, cherry tomatoes, garlic, olive oil, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Spread the vegetables out in an even layer on the baking sheet. Roast in the oven until the vegetables are tender and the eggplant is golden, about 35 minutes.

While the vegetables are roasting, place the pine nuts in a small baking dish. Place in the oven on the rack below the vegetables. Roast until golden, about 8 minutes. Remove from the oven and reserve.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain pasta into a large bowl and reserve 1 1/2 cups of the cooking liquid.

Transfer the roasted vegetables to a food processor. Add the torn mint leaves and extra-virgin olive oil. Puree the vegetables.

Transfer the pureed vegetables to the bowl with the pasta and add the Parmesan. Stir to combine, adding the pasta cooking liquid 1/2 cup at a time until the pasta is saucy. Sprinkle the pine nuts over the top and serve.  Enjoy!

 

Terrific Toffee
  • cup unblanched whole almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 cup semisweet chocolate pieces
  • 3/4 cup milk chocolate pieces
  • 1/3 cup white baking pieces
  • tablespoons malted milk powder
  • cup butter
  • cup sugar
  • tablespoons water

Directions

1. Line a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with foil, extending foil over edges of pan. In a bowl combine chopped almonds, semisweet and milk chocolate pieces, and white baking pieces. Sprinkle half (about 1-1/2 cups) of the nut/chocolate piece mixture over the bottom of prepared baking pan. Sprinkle malted milk powder over mixture in pan.

2. In a 2-quart heavy saucepan combine butter, sugar, and water. Cook over medium heat to boiling, stirring to dissolve sugar. Clip a candy thermometer to the pan. Cook, stirring frequently, until thermometer registers 290 degree F (soft-crack stage), about 15 minutes. Mixture should boil at a steady rate over the entire surface. (Adjust heat as necessary so that mixture does not boil over.)

3. Remove from heat; remove thermometer. Pour mixture quickly over nuts and chocolate pieces in pan. Immediately sprinkle remaining nut/chocolate piece mixture over toffee. Cool about 1 hour before breaking into pieces. If necessary, chill 15 minutes or until chocolate is firm. This is such a delicious treat you will love it!

Ok ladies, your turn!  Post a comment with your favorite yummy recipes!  Looking forward to seeing what y’all share!

God’s Laws

I am a big fan of Lifeway Christian stores and all of their amazing resources.  I subscribe to a devotional that Lifeway publishes for women every month that I absolutely love and look forward to getting and I find the daily devotions to be invaluable to my walk with Jesus so I wanted to share one with you from the other day that really convicted me.  This is taken straight out of the publication and if you like it you can subscribe to it yourself.  I highly, highly recommend it!  It is called ‘Journey’ and you can get it here.


I am sure of this, that He who started a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.  (Philippians 1:6)

We need God’s laws because even though God lives inside of us through His spirit , there are still parts of us that don’t always submit to His leading.  Scripture teaches that we can choose to revert back to our old nature, which doesn’t grow good things (Galatians 5:19-21)

Thats where God’s commands come in.  When we’re tempted to break God’s law, we should always choose the right path and follow His commands.  He always leads us toward the ways of life and away from things that cause us to fall.

When we’re really tempted to sin and we have to force ourselves to follow God’s command, it’s a little red flag that waves over a part of us that He needs to transform.  His commands show there’s a gap between where we are and where He’s growing us to be.  When we obey God and follow His commands in the midst of temptation, we’ll be more like Him.

When we’re tempted, or when we sin, we need to focus on our relationship with God.  Our sin is proof positive that there is a place in us that God wants to transform and make more like Him- a place where we need to invite Him to work.  Instead, we can respond, “God, theres an area inside me that isn’t lining up with Your character.  Will You work on this?” Ask God to help transform you in that area so you can begin to be the person you were meant to be.

God’s law is incredibly important, but His ideal is that as we walk with Him we will imitate Him as a child imitates his father.

God is constantly working on us, transforming us so that we’re more like Him.  The more moldable our hearts are and the more we let Him work’ the more we’ll be like Him.  As we’re transformed to be more like Jesus, we’ll rely less on rules and more on His spirit”. We’ll follow His leading because He has made us like Himself.

Lord, when I’m tempted to sin, help me to focus on You.  Thank You that You’re constantly working in me to transform me into the image of Your Son, Jesus.

To dig deeper…  Read Hebrews 12:5-11

I love everything about that devotional and I hope it made you think as much as it made me.  We are in desperate need of a Savior, someone who holds us accountable but who loves us unconditionally at the same time.  The Lord is our biggest fan and expects great things from us.  As we are tempted to sin it is so important to remain hand in hand with the Living God, never letting go of His strength.  He truly is our mighty Strong Tower.  I don’t know about you, but I want to be putty in His hands, moldable always to what He wants me to be…  Which is more like Him.

Hope you all have a very blessed weekend.  I am heading to Seattle for a hair show and am excited to fill you all in on the fun!  🙂

I serve a Perfect God!

I love that I serve a perfect God!  I soooo don’t deserve it and He is the perfect example of LOVE and what love truly means!  There is 100% comfort in knowing He holds my life in His hands!  His will is perfect, His timing is perfect, He has a reason for how things are and aren’t and He is Everything!  In my greatest moments and also in my greatest weakness, He is there.  He is the only one Who gives me peace and hope when I have none.  Nothing and no-one can ever fill what Christ does in you.  I learn more and more everyday that I need to die to myself and live for Him, because without Him we are nothing, but with Him we are everything!

On my way to work this morning as I drove down the road and took in the beauty of the trees and the splendor of the sky, I realized again that it’s all His and what an incredible Creator He is!  I was in awe of how captivating  the beauty of His creation is and how lucky I am to be here and He is so much bigger than any of us can ever imagine and His love is all encompassing and it’s real and it’s true!  He is the perfect example of how we should love.  I felt so convicted…  We need to be more like Jesus…  We need to walk this earth the way He did…  And love people the way He did…  And serve people the way He did!  He was a lover of all humanity, not because any of us deserve it, but because of who He is!  Also to love those who aren’t immediately in our circle or around us, it goes far beyond that; beyond social status, and my list of things here could go on but we are called to  live like this!  He served everyone and we’re to reach out and serve everyone and do what we can also, because this world is so much more than just ourselves.  We are here for a greater purpose and we need to fulfill that purpose.

To look around and take in the beauty that God created is magical and it brings me to my knees.  There is so much more to life than what we make it… so much more than we see.  We think about such minuscule things sometimes and put other things on a pedestal that shouldn’t be there!  We take matters into our own hands and sometimes forget to daily give everything as a beautiful offering to the One who made it all…  To Him be the glory…  His will, not ours.  Lord Jesus, stir up in me a profound passion for You.  Help me to desire You above all else and see things through Your beautiful eyes and not through my judgmental flesh!  You are the King of Kings and I live my life for You.  Thank you for dying on the cross for my sins,  and for loving me when I’m unlovable and unworthy.  Because of You, I get to walk free in the knowledge of Your grace.  You are Everything to me!

 

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. John 15:12