Heart Choices: More Culinary Camp Blessings -->

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More Culinary Camp Blessings

Counting one thousand gifts has become such a blessing for me.  I am taking the time to notice the simple everyday things in life.  How often have I missed those special blessings because I was too busy to notice?

So, I continue my counting...

I taught the girls in Culinary Camp all about table manners.  They learned the proper way to set the dinner table.  I found a wonderful way to help them remember the proper placing of the utensils from All Free Crafts. The author shared a story and described  "the fork was the imprisoned princess, separated from her prince (the spoon) by an alligator-infested swamp (the plate) and a mean soldier (the knife)."

Although the girls created their own place mats, I was amazed at how easily they remembered how to do this after learning the story.  Here are a few of their creations:
#98  Observing the creative way the girls drew their place mats

We had a meal in the teacher's lounge since there was a larger table and a working oven.  So we sat around the table and  practiced good table manners.  The school is comprised of people of many faiths.  However, as we sat down one of the little girls announced that we had to say grace.  She held her hands out so others could join in.  Oh, how I wished we could openly do so but ...

#99  My heart leaped with joy to see this little one saying grace

We had a special day when I invited the students to bring a sample of one of their family's favorite recipes.  They had an opportunity to tell the class a bit about the food they selected to bring and we each got a small taste.

Alexandra's parents are from China.  She eagerly shared that her mom's recipe for egg rolls was so much better than what we get at restaurants.  Although the recipe is a family secret, it was filled with delicious pork and tasted oh so good.
#100  Seeing family traditions continue to the next generation

Alyssa shared a coffee cake that is a specialty of her father's.  As we neared the end of the last week of Culinary Camp, she told me that she hoped her dad would now allow her to help out in the kitchen more.

Ryann was so excited to bring in her red apron to wear while cooking.

I was happy to teach the students how to make Norwegian waffles.  They tasted them and seemed to like them.  However, they weren't used to eating waffles without syrup.  Norwegians eat their waffles as a snack and not breakfast.  We often add butter and jam.

#101  Sharing family traditions and food with one another

#102  Hearing the excitement in the girls' voices as they hoped to share all they were learning with their families

On our last day of Culinary Camp, we made cupcakes for the 4th of July.  We made red, white and blue ones using food coloring in three separate bowls.  The students each got to help out and after the cupcakes were cool, they had such fun decorating them.

It did get a bit messy but they were having such fun!  Everyone got to eat one and then they gave a few to several of the teachers and brought the rest home to their families.

#103  Listening to the laughter as the girls were so excited baking and decorating cupcakes

What a fun experience Culinary Camp was for me!  Greg helped me put together recipe books for each girl to take home.  We had a page for each recipe along with a photo so they could share them with their families.  Greg spent hours printing and editing for me in the early hours of the morning before I left for work.

#104  A husband who helps me and loves to hear all of my stories about the children

Are you counting your everyday blessings?  I encourage you to begin.  It will change  your perspective on life.

Blessings and love,
Debbie Petras
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  1. Too cute, Debbie.

    As for saying grace, have you read D.J.'s post on saying grace over at The Quiet Quill? funny story.

    Blessings to you - Marhsa

  2. Dear Debbie,
    you've got so much to share, and such a willing heart to do so.

    I bet those girls must have had a fantastic culinary week.
    How fun that you taught them how to make waffles.

    I wish I'd been your student and learned how to make those beautiful cup cakes.
    They look so good and probably taste yummy.

    A suggestion from an old foreigner.
    Holding hands, saying grace is such a beautiful custom.
    What if,- you hold hands and say " we are truly grateful for what we are about to receive."
    God will know your thoughts and good intentions and you will not offend any infidels.
    Be shrewd as snakes..
    Yours Felisol

  3. Counting those blessings.....It's amazing what this does for one's heart.....You start to become thankful for all those little things you hadn't noticed before...and soon you realize your attitude is very different.......I'm counting my too......

    Camp sounds like it has been wonderful.....all the girls exchanging their native food must have been quite an experience and adventure........

    Again, I say, they are blessed to have you teach them........

  4. Reading your post reminds me of this old hymn. It's so true. If we think on the blessings of God, how can we ever stay discouraged for very long. God is so good!

    When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
    When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
    Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
    And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.


    Count your blessings,
    name them one by one, Count your blessings,
    see what God hath done! Count your blessings,
    name them one by one,
    And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

    Thank you for the reminder.

  5. What fun it looks like the children are having. What a joy it must be for them to be in your class. You are so creative and have so many great ideas. It sounds like Greg has been a real blessing to you. You'll have to have a class for adults also. I will be the first to sign up.

  6. Counting thanks with you and loving it!

  7. I was thinking about alternatives to VBS for next summer and one of the thoughts I had was something along the lines of a culinary camp. It's not something I've seen churches do over here so it will be interesting to see if we manage to pull it off.

  8. Hi Debbie, I loved reading this and seeing the photos. It so reminds me on VBS and also teaching;thank you for sharing. As for 1,000 gifts-it is amazing how it realigns our focus on His blessings.
    Hugs today.

  9. I was wishing I was a kid again just so I could come to your culinary camp. What a great idea!!!! I just loved reading this today and so glad I stopped by. Thank you so much!

  10. What can go wrong when we start our day with a "grateful" attitude? That was a neat story to help the kids remember in setting the table. I think that they would carry that in their hearts and minds in their lifetime. You are such a blessing to these kids!

    I had been busy since work transferred me to PM shift, a part of the battle I'm in. I'm just waiting...hoping...and I know that things will happen in the Lord's perfect timing. For now, I remain standing because of His strength.

    Thank you sister Debbie for leaving your precious footprints. I treasure your encouragement and especially your faith that blesses mine. God bless you and may the Lord empower you in everything that you do.

    The other day (Saturday morning I think), I opened the box of pancake mix from Ikea. I love it as crepe but I had made it into waffles. I forgot to get some lingonberries though so yup...my family and I ended up drizzling them with maple syrup! I'm sure your Norwegian waffles are also special!!! :)

  11. So cool, Debbie! I love that you're doing this. I know you're having a wonderful and blessed time. Enjoy!

  12. What a wonderful idea - Culinary Camp! I love that they are learning while having fun. I taught a cooking class a few yrs ago to some home schooled kids and wished I'd had this story to help them remember how to set the table.Thanks for sharing.

  13. What a special time you shared with these children! I'm sure they will remember it the rest of their lives. Thank you for sharing your blessings with us!

    Love, Joan

  14. This is just soooooooooo precious from beginning to end...I can just hear their voices. I am so glad God has given you such joy this summer while you are working, even if it isn't what you had hoped you would be doing, God is faithful and lights up your world.

  15. What a joy this is for you Debbie, and for those kids! Yay for Greg, his help makes it extra special, and I'm thinking he got a big blessing too! :)


  16. Although I'm not a fan of the book, I do enjoy counting one's blessings. I call them grace notes!


I love to read your comments! I know you have something to share so join in the conversation. And thank you for taking the time.

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