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Today, we talk about Acting to Defend OUR Marriages.

Here are some help from Dr. Randy Carlson’s book Starved For Affection:  PRAY: Lord, I ask that you help me during times of difficulty in my marriage to remember:

To stay focused on what truly matters.

To pray for my spouse.

That being the right person in more important than being right.

That having a relationship with another human being is a precious gift to be handles with love and respect.

That the greatest thing I can give to another person is the gift of myself-even with all my frailty and hurt.

That true forgiveness and reconciliation begins with me, and will spring from a humble spirit and a contrite heart.

That after I have given all I can to reconcile a broken relationship, I must trust you with the outcome and refuse to react bitterly or vengefully if I have to let that relationship go.


Your Love Dare for today: End it now. Identify any obsession or object of lust in your life and let it go. Expose any lie you’ve swallowed in pursuing forbidden pleasure and reject it. Lust cannot be allowed to live in a back closet. It must be killed and destroyed today. Focus on thanking God the He and what He provides can satisfy you and meet all your needs.


Your Respect Dare today:  Pray wholeheartedly that God shows you how this concept of allowing your husband to be CEO of your famiy impacts your marriage. Ask Him to help you be teachable and pray that you learn. Ask Him to give you and your husband a united


Your Respect Dare today: Practice active listening. Hear your husband out today without interrupting. When he’s finished sharing whatever is on his mind, reflect back what you heard from him. A good reflective statement can start with something like “I think I hear you saying that _____________. Is that right?”

Your Love Dare Today: Get RID of something that stands in the way of being the Godly husband you’re called to be. What is the ONE THING (you likely know what it is…addiction, pornography, to much time with another, t.v.) if it’s stopping your from your call as a Godly leader….today you DARE is to eliminate it. Get it out…TODAY!


Just in time for the July 15th return of the Twinkie, here’s the recipe Shannyn uses to make a healthy-ish vegan alternative.


 Vegan Twinkies Recipe

Making the twinkies is a three step process:
Make the cream and let it chill for a few hours.
Make the cakes, cool and chill.
Fill the cakes with the cream.

For the Cakes:

Makes 16 Twinkies (2 pans). Once again, if you only have 1 pan, cut the recipe in half.

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 cup unbleached white flour
6 tablespoons light organic cane sugar
1 teaspoon aluminum-free baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
1/3 cup expeller pressed canola oil
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons maple syrup, Grade B or dark amber
¾ cup vanilla soymilk or rice milk
2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
2 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

1. Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 350 degrees. Spray the pan with canola or other nonstick spray.
2. Place a wire mesh strainer over a medium bowl. Add the pastry flour, white flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt to the strainer. Tap the strainer against the palm of your hand to sift the ingredients into the bowl. Stir with a wire whisk to distribute the ingredients.
3. Whisk the oil, maple syrup, soymilk, vanilla, and vinegar in a separate bowl until well blended. Pour into the dry mixture and stir with a whisk until the batter is smooth.
4. Fill each cup about 1/3 full (about 3 tablespoons of batter each). Bake for 16 to 17 minutes, until the cakes are golden and a cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean.
5. Cool the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Run a thin knife between the cakes and the inside of the cup and lift each onto the rack to cool completely. Chill before filling.

For the Cream Filling:

Makes 1 ½ cups, enough to fill 16 twinkies. If only making half the number of cakes, cut the cream filling recipe in half as well.

7 ounces firm tofu, drained (simmer in water for 5 minutes)
4 teaspoons expeller pressed canola oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup, Grade B or dark amber
3 tablespoons raw light agave syrup
6 tablespoons light organic cane sugar
3/4 teaspoon very finely grated lemon zest
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
4 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
½ teaspoon pure coconut extract
1/4 teaspoon pure almond extract
1 1/2 ounces of vegan white chocolate melted
2 tablespoons arrowroot dissolved in 6 tablespoons soy creamer


You will need a food processor. An important tip to keep in mind: Tofu based creams must be pureed until absolutely smooth and creamy. If properly made, there will be absolutely no taste of tofu.

1. Crumble the tofu into a food processor and process for 1 minute. Add the oil and process 1 minute.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients except the arrowroot, and process 3 to 4 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth and creamy. Stop the processor a few times and clean the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula.
3. Taste and add more sugar for a sweeter whip. Stir the dissolved arrowroot to release any starch that has settled to the bottom.
4. Pour into a small saucepan and cook, whisking frequently over medium heat until the mixture reaches a full boil. It will be very thick and gummy. Immediately remove the saucepan from the stove. Add to the cream and pulse to incorporate.
5. Process until the cream is smooth. Spoon the cream into a container. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours or longer to allow the flavors to blend. The cream will thicken slightly as it chills but it is not a stiff cream.

Assemble the cakes:
Use a pastry tip, large straw, or chopstick to poke 3 holes into the bottom of each cake. Remove a plug of cake, but don’t go all the way through the cake.
Fit a12-inch pastry bag with a star or round (¼ inch opening) tip and fill with cream. Slowly squeeze about one tablespoon into each hole. The cakes will seem to expand. Don’t worry if the other side of the cake cracks a little. Refrigerate the filled cakes in a covered container. Serve at room temperature.

Keep up with Fran on her Facebook page, Vegan Pastry Chef Fran Costigan. Find the video of Fran making her famous twinkies here, Fran Costigan video.

Holy twinkies batman! I know I’ll be making these soon. If you get to it before I do, please do tell! Drop a line below. Always love to hear from you! :)

Recipe posted with permission from Fran Costigan
Photo credit: Fran Costigan


Your Love Dare Today: Tell your wife the following “I love you and nothing will ever change that.” Pray, ask the Lord to make it true-even if you don’t “feel it” right now.

Your Respect Dare Today: Write a letter to a younger, newly married version of yourself, telling yourself HOW and WHY it’s most important to have a perfect marriage WITH CHRIST that any man THEWrite your husband a note, thanking him for being your knight in shinning armor.

Here’s that list from Real Simple Magazine about how to group our fruits and veggies for storage to keep the nice and fresh for the longest possible time! Just keep the Ethylene-Producing AWAY from the Ethylene-Sensitive and you’ve got a running start!



  • Apricots
  • Avocados
  • Bananas
  • Cantaloupes
  • Honeydew melons
  • Kiwis
  • Mangoes
  • Nectarines
  • Papayas
  • Peaches
  • Pears
  • Plums
  • Tomatoes


  • Apples
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Carrots
  • Cucumbers
  • Eggplants
  • Green beans
  • Lettuce and other greens
  • Potatoes
  • Summer squash
  • Watermelons

Your Respect Dare for today: Ask the Lord to work in your heart and mind, so that as you are busy with your work (be it at home or the office) you are reminded to seek the Lords approval and not the approval of man. Spend so time in prayer asking God to move in your heart and mind in this area of your life.

Your Love Dare for today.  Look back over the dares from previous days. Do they reveal a difficulty in your ability to love your spouse? Have you realized your need for God to change your heart and give you His ability to love? Ask Him to show you where you stand with Him and give you the grace to seek Him, ind Him and walk with Him.

Your Love Dare Today: Make a meal (or get carryout) and spend some time listening to and getting to know your spouse better. Love is intimate. How much do you KNOW about your spouse? Their dream, fears, challenges? Find out today!

Your Respect Dare Today: Compliment your spouse in public. Brag on them in front of someone else. THEN…put the letters CH on your calendar twice a week for the rest of this and all of next month and on those days, COMPLIMENT your HUSBAND.