Sunday, June 26, 2011



I've been inspired to write this blog based upon a cheese I tasted yesterday. I adore cheese. I'm fairly certain that the majority of my body weight can be attributed to cheese & I'm quite happy to think so. I believe I am on my way to becoming a connoisseur in this area and so I thought I would share a few of my favorite cheeses with you!

Long-standing favorite: Cahill Whiskey Cheese

This darling Irish cheese has a lovely whiskey bite to it that makes it sweetly melt in your mouth. It's perfect with grapes and a baguette. I recommend trying it at Venissimo (a 2nd Street must!) the place where I first discovered it. Also, you can conveniently get this cheese at Whole Foods (also known as "Whole Paycheck" in my home).

Next & A favorite since October: Mimolette

This is a hard but absolutely delicious cheese. It's best to pair it with another cheese, I recommend a creamy, soft white cheese to give some balance and variety to your palette. Either of these two white cheeses I'm posting are perfect compliments. This cheese became a favorite just after my purchase of Martha Stewart's Halloween magazine last year. It was the perfect addition to my halloween cheese plate & if you're brave enough to look up how the cheese is made you'll discover an even creepier side to this orange treat! *This cheese is also available at Whole Paycheck

Finally & my most recent discovery: Mainland New Zealand White Cheddar (Grassfed)
This is a simply delightful cheese. It's creamy but not too rich, has just enough of a sour taste to satisfy but not overwhelm & I find it just a little too easy to eat. I paired it with nectarines last night & it made for a fresh & soft summer feast in my mom's kitchen. Lucky for you this cheese is charmingly inexpensive and available at Trader Joe's.

If you venture to try any of these I sincerely hope that you enjoy yourselves & please, stay cheesy. 


Monday, June 20, 2011

a hug

So my husband is speaking at a camp next month. His theme is grace and his talk, from what I've heard so far, is going to rock some little junior high hearts. 
This opportunity has led to some awesome discussions within the small walls of our apartment concerning the vast, reaching & astonishing doctrines of grace. These discussions/debates & deep probings of our minds produced a new thought on grace that I have found truth & comfort in & would like now to share it with you.

Quoting  a scholar, someone who certainly knows what they are talking about, Bryce read a passage that remarked upon grace as a "gift," one that we do not deserve & that cannot be paid back. Well, I don't like that idea, but then, I don't think many of us like the thought of getting something we are unworthy of and that we can't pay back. If Ayn Rand taught me anything it's that I earn what I have and I pay for what I want. But grace doesn't work that way. That I don't deserve it but am given it anyway is the toughest aspect of grace & is often abused by people who feel entitled to it & free to carry on as they would. That's not how it works either. 
As Bryce & I discussed grace and how we experience it I thought back to the time in my life where it first became real to me. I was sitting in church about 5 years ago now, I felt doomed by decisions I had made & to a life I didn't want. I was sad, alone, hopeless & feeling unloved when our pastor began speaking on grace. I don't remember what he said exactly, but the match was lit in my mind and as the flame grew so did the light & the idea; I realized that I could change my life, make new & right decisions, run from my past and into the arms of Jesus. As I gazed into that memory I realized that for me grace has never been a gift - something I run the risk of feeling entitled to, it has always been a hug. I remember distinctly crying, feeling overwhelmed & washed over in truth, hope & grace. That moment led to a break-up, a decision to serve in junior high ministry, meeting a handsome intern, falling for him, marrying him & now he is teaching junior highers about my grace. Life, right? It's a chaotic pattern of perfection, "fearful symmetry" to quote Blake, a divine poem that overwhelms the fragment I am able to read of it even now. 

As I opened this thought I felt the truth & beauty of it. I saw it like this: When I am drenched in my sin, feeling that despair, helplessness & gripping fear in being so lost, it's as though a light turns on behind me, I feel it warm my back, I know what it means, who it is and tears run down my face as I realize that he has come for me. I turn around slowly, I see Jesus standing with his arms held out aching for me. Sometimes I run to them, other times I walk slowly but it always ends the same. I walk into the hug and his arms fold around me, my heart overflows in his love & somehow I am able to put my arms around him, where they have belonged the whole time. 

grace is a hug. I hope you have felt it & that you will feel it many, many times.


Friday, June 3, 2011


When life is full the blog goes empty!

I've missed this place & you somehow even though we don't exactly talk here. But You were missed & that's always a nice thing to be told.

Church has been happening.

Bryce & I have become members of our church & in the journey from the class to the confirmation some pretty interesting & beautiful new thoughts have floated into my head. In a conversation I had with my dear cousin a week or so ago I told her how in being back at the church I feel like I am "getting my voice back" - the odd part is, I don't know where it went to begin with. I've struggled with regularly attending church since we were married & while we have been told that that is ever so normal I don't think the loss of self I have felt was usual. I have been wrapped up & trapped within myself unable to see what I was missing & even convinced I was happier that way. But I haven't been "happy" with who I have been for some time, until these last few weeks.

Recently, I heard a man on the radio listing off the tremendous distances that exist between the earth & other parts of our solar system. His conclusion upon listing these measurements in the billions & trillions was, "that just goes to show how insignificant we are," and this, I think, is the common reaction. It is what we hear & tell ourselves whenever we are faced with calculations measuring the grandeur of the world or our solar system. However, this time when I heard his response a deep cry welled up from within me & my heart screamed at him, "NO! Don't you see, all those huge numbers & unimaginable distances only point to HOW significant WE are!" Doesn't it count for something that we are the only creative, transformative, exploring & reasoning creature to exist in the universe? I have grown up with voices all my life teaching me that I am nothing but "dust," that I am undeserving, that I'm so small I almost don't matter. I'm wondering now if those were the voices that had taken away my own, deprived me of any feeling of action. I think they probably were. But I can't hear them anymore and I do disagree. God's love is why. I am loved, I am called to action & when I am loved so deeply I feel I can do nothing but act on it! It is the greatest feeling & one that is coursing through me, I can't wait to get into fellowship with my dear friends & soon-to-be-friends and the fact that I, Molly, just typed all those words  (one after the other) is proof of a miraculous change within myself over this past month.

I said life has been full & I don't mean with work or routine. It has just been exciting, dynamic & almost like learning how to live again. I feel like I have come home after a cold & too-long journey, the blanket is around my shoulders & the cup of hot soup in my hand. He (my Lord) is feeding me, preparing me for something that just feels like it's going to knock  my little cinderella  flats right off & my heart is leaping to see it.