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The dog leash is wound tightly around my wrist. Her little body begins to shake the moment the bus comes lumbering around the corner, eventually rolling to a stop. She chases her tail, excited and anticipating boy cuddles after a long school day apart. Oversized backpack slung over his shoulder and a coat hanging off one elbow, my youngest meanders down the bus steps, hollering final goodbye's to his friends. He doesn't notice that his brother isn't following behind like usual. ChatteringGathering things that have likely dropped on the floor during the ride. I think of a million reasons for a delay by my social butterfly.

But then, he appears. Eyes welling with tears, he stumbles down the stairs and throws himself into a bear hug, burying his face in my jacket. Alarmed, I guide his eyes up to mine and give him a questioning look. "She said our house looks stupid, Mom. She thinks we're funny and she made fun of Jesus." 

 
 

We pray that this Thanksgiving is your most restful, brimming-with-gratitude holiday yet. This pie is one of our ultimate favorites. Quick. Delicious. A crowd pleaser. From our family to yours, a PRINTABLE recipe "so easy the kids can do it!" 

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Pie Filling Ingredients:
  • 3 pints blueberries
  • 2 Tbs. squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
Egg Wash:
  • 1 egg
  • 1 Tbs. milk

  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Combine the blueberries, flour, cinnamon, lemon juice, and sugar. Place in the bottom crust.
  3. Dot the top of the mixture with butter pieces, equally distributing them.
  4. Cover with the top crust, rolling and pressing the edges together to seal the pie all along the edge of the pie dish. 
  5. Chill for 30 minutes, until firm. 
  6. Cut slits into the top of the pie, apply a thin layer of egg wash, and sprinkle sugar and cinnamon over the top.
  7. Bake pie at 425 degree for 20 minutes, turning the oven down to 350 degrees for the remaining 40 minutes. 
  8. The pie is done when the filling bubbles beneath the surface of the crust. Allow it to cool and "set" before eating. 
  9. Enjoy! 

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Photo Credit: Printable Background- Dmytro Yakymuk, Bottom - All rights reserved @theGrittyPearl
 
 
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My family's a little weird. Well, maybe I'm just weird and my husband goes along with it. It doesn't phase him when I come up with a "let's try something new" idea. In fact, one of my very favorite things about that man is that he's never bowed down to other people's opinions about him. "Sure, why not?" is the response I usually get. I've spent a lifetime trying to figure out how to do that - letting God sand down the rough edges of my "permission-seeking" over the years. 

This is exactly how we ended up with a Christmas tree in our living room.  

 
 
Don't trust any stories from Joe's Grandma! Let's get real about our relationships. A discussion on hearsay versus face-to-face friendships...

What's your friendship status? Do you have a lot of friends? A few close ones? What about those you're not as close to any more? 



 
 

Hello there and happy November! I'm glad you're back. If you're new to the Gritty Pearl, welcome! We're in the second week of a three-part discussion on intimacy and relationships. We were challenged last week with the issue of physical intimacy and married life. It can be a tender, sometimes nose-crinkling conversation, though it's hugely important to those of us maintaining marriages, or who are hoping to become married in the future. This week, we tackle body image and the ways that our insecurities can affect our relationships with the people who love us the most.
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Any tired folks out there? Curious ones? After reading the title of this blog, are any of you thinking, "Lord knows, I can't remember the last time I was physically intimate! Maybe last Tuesday?" As we enter a mini-series on intimacy, we'll be talking about emotional vulnerability, physical satisfaction, and the unique and biblical opportunities that we've been given through the gift of commitment. Join us!

 
 
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Every word spoken. Nugget of advice given. Article written. News story reported. Question asked. 
Biased.

And no, you are not immune to bias here at the Gritty Pearl. Let's find out why!


 
 
I'm beyond grateful to be home. Now let's catch up! We'll talk giveaways, updates, and then, a little story about mindset during stressful times...
 
 
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I stand a silent witness, his tears drying in their own time, leaving salt-powdered trails down that beautiful, round face. His hands are clenched over his eyes and, despite the fact that I have discovered him crouched behind the bathroom door, he's certain that he's invisible so long as they keep tightly closed. Cheeks pink and hair rumpled, my precious three-year-old sits motionless, expressing feelings in the only way that he knows how.  Unable to put a name to the hurt in his heart, he hides - which makes all the sense in the world. 

 
 
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I rarely refer to my college days when I write to you all. I'm not completely sure why, though it's probably because those years were such a time of immaturity and growth, cringe-worthy at many points. This week, though, I can't get those years or the people out of my mind. Especially Faith. She was the first "Black" girl that ever told me to my face what she and her friends really thought about me.