Allow Me to Introduce…

My Family


I guess I should have done this sooner, if I was into polite etiquette and all that. Unfortunately, I am not. I eat with my elbows on the table, can’t tell a salad fork from a meat fork, and forget to introduce my family. A thousand apologies. Anyway, here they all are:

Ruthie, age 8. A plethora of pink.






Hannah, age 13. The definition of sweetness.






Mom and Dad (John and Sheri), ages unavailable. My parental units. 😉



Now that you’ve met us all, I hope you can get to know our crazy and (somewhat) lovable family! 🙂


Because We Can’t All Be Martha Stewart

 One of these days, I’m going to buy an apron that reads “Yes, It’s Supposed to Look Like This”. Because, it pains me to admit, my cooking skills are seriously lacking. Given, I can occasionally bake a pretty decent loaf of bread, or make a pie that isn’t very runny, but I have had more cooking disasters than I can count on my fingers and toes.

Case in point: My love/hate relationship with apple pie. Half the time, my apple pies taste great! I go through all this trouble of making homemade crust and it’s perfectly buttery and flakey and oh-so-good. However, the other fifty percent of the time has resulted in some major apple pie baking disasters.

Perhaps the one my family likes to regale most frequently is the time I ended up setting our oven on fire baking an apple pie. It was really quite embarrassing. We had some friends over for an impromptu dinner and I decided to impress them by baking a homemade apple pie from scratch. Everything was going great. The crust was firm, the apples weren’t bruised, and I had made a pretty little design on the top out of left over pieces of dough. The main problem lay in my innate talent to always undercook an apple pie. I’m constantly sticking it back in the oven for another ten minutes after everyone has already gotten out their plates and forks and everything.

Anyway, on this particular occasion, I cut into the pie and little bits of runny filling gooped out. Laughing it off, I put the pie back into the oven. Fatal mistake number one.

Fatal mistake number two wasn’t really my fault, because I can’t help it if the filling of a pie continues to run out once it’s in the oven. I also can do nothing to change the fact that half-baked apples are extremely flammable. Within a matter of minutes, the smoke detector was going off and I ran over to open the oven. Sparks were flying. Orange flames danced around, clouded by smoke. The pie baking experiment had turned absolutely lethal.

In the end, we swatted out the fire with some damp towels and rescued the pie. It was very good, although a bit runny. (Because life isn’t fair, after all) We laughed it off (*ahem*–my family laughed it off; I turned red in the face and muttered something about ovens and pie fillings), but you would have thought my lesson had been learned.

It wasn’t.

Flash forward three years and you end up at our house, about two months ago. We were getting ready for a Christmas tea party, all dolled up in our Sunday best. As a Christmas present, I had decided to bake an apple pie for one of my friends. You’d think I would have remembered about the dangerous capability of a pie to leak all over everything. Instead, I blindly placed the pie in my lap. Wow, I remember saying, This pie is really keeping me warm.

Um, yeah. In case you haven’t already figured it out, it was the filling oozing out of the pie that was really keeping me warm. Icky brown cinnamon-flavored filling that got all over my black and white dress and favorite coat. I was absolutely devastated, but my friend assured me that the pie was actually very good. I still haven’t gotten over the tragedy. I can’t bring myself to throw away the coat either, so now it sits, all stained and wrinkled, in a corner of a laundry room. Maybe one day I’ll discover I have a fairy godmother, and my first wish will be for her to make it like new again. 🙂

One day, when I’m a fabulous culinary connoisseur, I know I’ll look back on this and laugh. I’ll toss my head and wrap up the absurdly hilarious story (as if I would do that now!) and then ask if anyone would like another bowl of raspberry crème brulee. But, until then, I’ll just have to deal with my wounded pride. It just goes to show me that, as if I didn’t know, I’m not perfect. I make mistakes. I set ovens on fire and ruin beautiful pink coats. But in those moments I remember that God can take my messy life and make it beautiful. And then I’m encouraged to try and bake another pie, because one of these days I’ll get it just right!

Anyway, if you have any comical kitchen fiascos to share, please do. I promise I’ll laugh and possibly feel sorry for you if it involves you being any more embarrassed than showing up at a Christmas tea party in a streaky brown dress, reeking of cinnamon. 🙂


Five Random Things….

“Anything worth doing, is worth doing well.” (Even blogging)

I suppose that’s about as good a quote to start a blog as any. For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Rachel Coker and I’m fifteen years old. I’m a homeschooled student from Virginia with really nothing better to do than write and play the piano. (Okay, okay: I do other stuff, too) I came to the Lord when I was about ten years old, and have been growing in my faith ever since. I see my life as an opportunity to serve others and glorify God with my gifts and talents.

As an introduction, I thought I’d share with you five things about myself so you can get to know me better:

  1. I read—a lot. Although I used to read more than I did now, since nowadays I’m swamped in schoolwork and actually having a life. But there was a time when you’d be hard pressed to find me without a book in my hand. I do own over one hundred of them.
  2. I also write, but not really because I love it (although I do!). I write because I feel like I need to write. I wrote my first mini-novel when I was eleven or so, and I haven’t stopped since. I guess it was inevitable, because ever since I was five my Barbie games went like this: “Barbie looked at Ken and cried, ‘Oh, my gosh! I can’t believe you’re proposing!’ Ken laughed and shook his head. ‘Oh, Barbie, don’t you know I’ve always loved you?’ He knelt and clasped her hand…” It drove my sisters crazy.
  3. My little sister finally taught me how to ride a bike when I was fourteen. I’ve always been afraid of wheels and pity anyone who’s on the road with me once I get my license. (Steer clear of VA highways)
  4. I have an intense dislike for anything mainstream or normal. I watch 1940s film noir films, listen to 70s rock, and actually have several old school French pop songs on my iPod. My only guilty pleasure? Taylor Swift. (Because who doesn’t like Taylor Swift?)
  5. When I was ten, I began scrapbooking and developed an attachment to the glorified photo albums I created. Journaling for the pages fostered my writing development and also implanted a sense of humor in me—while I used to view things as dramatic and monumental; I now see life as an episode of small, humorous events. Discovering the joy and spunkiness of everyday life has made me more appreciative of my family and more sensitive to others struggles.

Well, I suppose that’s me in a nutshell. Offbeat, old-school, and a really bad Barbie player. (Some things never change)