Guild Wars 2

August Newsletter

August 1, 2016
August Newsletter 3

“Fairest of the months!
Ripe summer’s queen
The hey-day of the year
With robes that gleam with sunny sheen
Sweet August doth appear.”
R. Combe Miller

Happy August…blah blah blah. The weather is good….blah blah blah. Alright, now that we’ve got the pleasantries out of the way it’s time to dig in to this month’s newsletter.

The past few weeks, we have been learning about the book of James in church and it is quickly becoming my (new) favorite book of the Bible. James is so jam packed full of practical information on living in a way that is pleasing to God and the cherry on top is that it’s also a super encouraging book for anyone undergoing trials in their life. “Consider it pure joy my brother, whenever you face trials of many kinds…” James 1:2; “Every good and perfect gift is from above…” James 1:17; “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry.” James 1:19; “My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don’t show favoritism.” James 2:1; I could go on all day. It seems every week after my church service I come away with some nugget of truth and inspiration that I didn’t have before.

I find it truly fascinating the way the Lord uses others to teach us. He can take an area where you are struggling and “coincidently” put it in the church sermon for the week. I have noticed that happening to me a lot in our James study and it seems it’s always on the same topic: the tongue. I am sad to say I have heard of some tongue problems within our guild, while that’s not surprising because we all are humans and we all are sinners, it saddens me to see that within friends. The Bible warns us about the effect our tongue can have in many different verses. “When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise.” Proverbs 10:19. “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths but only what is useful for building other up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 4:29. “If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.” James 1:26. “Likewise, the tongue is a small part of the body, but makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark.” James 3:5. Three different weeks during this series the topic of the tongue has come up because it’s so prevalent within human nature. “…it is probably the biggest ‘tongue related’ problem we face. Think you know what it is? Gossip. Everyone struggles at one point or another with it—some more than others. The problem with gossip is, despite its insidiousness, that few are willing to stay away from it. It’s like the pet sin that Christians are willing to adopt.” –Pastor Phil Christensen, COTF. I have been so convicted during these talks because it’s so easy to fall into the category of “oh, it’s just a little gossip, it’s not that bad.” But friends, it’s a big deal. “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.” Ephesians 4:31. James 2:10 says “For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it.” I have really got to watch what comes out of my mouth!

Right in the middle of this sermon series and right in the middle of my conviction, a dear friend, you know her as Sparro, reached out to me with a conviction of her own and I want to share her words with you. (She gave permission to share her words and name with you.)

“Wow! Salt is supporting three raiding groups! This is amazing, and has taken a lot of effort through so many people to organize, research and invest into. Thank you so much to each of you, I know there are so many of us who wholeheartedly appreciate it. I am able to raid with the Tuesday/Thursday group, and I am happy to be able to have this time to play with guildies! The best thing about having this opportunity is the fellowship. It took some time for us to find that synergy amongst ourselves. When we started we were like any other group, going in wiping, then wiping, then wiping. After some time the newness of the fight wears off and the wanting to just get that first kill takes over; then you start to look where, why, is this not happening? Is it because this person, that person, I mean why do they do that?!?! It starts to plague in the mind. One night, we stood in front of the Vale Guardian and we discussed everything with each other. Did we get the kill that night? No. I look back though, and that is the night we embraced each other and came into fellowship. We won that night. Sometimes before our raid we decide on what would be a win for us. Get to this phase, see the boss do this mechanic, or just create a consistency in the beginning mechanics. Some nights we don’t make it to the win, some nights we surpass the win, but every night I come away happy for the time spent with each person because of the night God won us.
Raiding can ruin a game though, and can tear a guild apart. It isn’t because of the wins (maybe elitist guilds it is for that…) but it is because of the gossip. It is because of the hurtful things we say, or the seeding gossip in another’s ear: when we have reached the moment of the newness gone and finding someone to blame. I am not immune to gossip, I have wanted to blame someone else for my downfalls. I needed a wakeup call from God to stop letting my mouth become a resting ground for seeding evil. Unfortunately, this trial is not my own.
Did you know when Jesus went and gathered His disciples He didn’t go and gather the best of the best. He got a tax collector, fishermen, and a zealot. He created a fellowship, investing into them to become men who would continue spreading the Gospel after His Ascension. When they went out, they were not met with win after win, but it was the fellowship with Jesus and their brothers that sustained them.
Are you doing everything you can to lift up the raid member beside you? Do you really want to make someone feel low to excuse yourself? Can you stop for one moment and see that gossiping is not making anything better? The newness of the raid has probably worn off and you are itching for the boss to go down, but so are the other 9 in your group. One of the most powerful things you can do is to tell someone encouraging words. People want to be loved. Love them. Take the time, it is worth it.
Next time you find yourself raiding, let God win.”

All this to say, friends, we love you. We are so blessed to have so many amazing friends who stick with us in the midst of human nature. Thank you Sparro for your love of Christ, your love of His word and your desire to see the guild love and support each other in Him. Please be encouraged my friends because while this world and everyone in it are sinful, Christ has overcome the world.

Let God win.

•    •    •

July was another awesome month for us in Salt! I was pretty excited to announce to you that we hit the max guild level, which was 64, but then they release the new Living Story and with it came two more upgrades which means we are still one level away! Gosh darn them! We now have four upgrades to go and are in need of a couple big tickets items. The biggest things we need for the next four upgrades include Ley-Line infused tools, Memories of Battle (from WvW) and The Gift of Music. As far as the Ley-Line Infused tools, we need that for two tiers of upgrades; first of the two upgrades only needs about 68 more. While that may seem like a lot, considering our roster size, if everyone donates even just one to the guild hall we could have it done by the weekend (and excess for the next tier)! If you can please consider donating one we’d so appreciate it; you can craft up to 1 a day (unless you have an excess of charged quartz crystals) or they can be purchased for 4 gold in the trading post. It’s a lot I know, but think about it and see if you can help us out. Memories of battle are obtained through WvW reward tracks and we need 415 more of those. The Gift of Music might be a tough one to get seeing as it is a Legendary Material. I think the best way to go about getting this is to collect the materials in the guild bank then once we have all of them I can craft the item for us. For that we need 250 Orichalcum Ingots, 250 Bolts of Gossamer and 100 Opal Orbs; if you have any of these items that you can part with, put them in the guild bank for me. Aside from these things we also need Steel Chisels and Steel Craftsman’s Hammers; 25 of each. These can only be made by a scribe at 150 or higher and are account bound so can’t be bought. If you are a scribe that can make these we’d be hugely grateful and if you’re not but you have Steel Ingots, Cured Coarse Leather Squares or Seasoned wood planks you can put those in the guild bank and our scribe can use them to make those items. I believe that is it on the guild upgrades; let’s get ‘er done! Thanks in advance to everyone who can help and a major thank you to everyone who has donated anything to the guild already. One more level to max!!

Now that our guild hall is just about done I’d also like to give you all the opportunity to help an ally guild. You may all remember AoG, we helped them claim their guild hall, we frequently see chat from them and occasionally they attend our weekly guild missions! Avenger Thor and Lt. Fog have a quaint little guild and have been progressing their guild hall surprisingly well for their size. Way to go guys! If you would be interested in helping and supporting them they are in need of lots of Empty Kegs and Vials of Linseed oil. This is not required in any way, just an opportunity to serve others. Any donations can be deposited into the guild bank then I can transfer them to their Guild treasurer.

As august gets underway we often see our participation increase. Summer is winding down and schedules begin to normalize. I hope to see many of you in game soon! Two of our event leaders have chosen to step down as officers and pursue God’s plan for them in other areas of their life. They are still in game and we are sad they stepped down but we are excited to see them following God’s call. If you see Exilim or Godfrey in game, be sure to say hi and thank them for all they did for us. We wish you the best, don’t be strangers!

The living story is pretty awesome so far but I won’t say much else for those who haven’t done it yet. Spoilers!

Well that’s all from me for now. God bless you all this month.

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


• New Saltines •

kimmer; Grace; Kypp, Upright; VideoRock; Bacardi Babe; Cobrakon; MrFisticuffs, Meletyon.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• August Verse of the Month •

James 2
NIV

“My brothers, as believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ, don’t show favoritism. Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?
Listen, my dear brothers: Has not God chosen those who are poor in the eyes of the world to be rich in faith and to inherit the kingdom he promised to those who love him? But you have insulted the poor. Is it not the rich who are exploiting you? Are they not the ones who are dragging you into court? Are they not the ones who are slandering the noble name of him to whim you belong?
If you really keep the royal law found in Scripture, “Love your neighbor as yourself,” you are doing right. But if you show favoritism, you sin and are convicted by the law as lawbreakers. For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. For he who said, “Do not commit adultery,” also said “Do not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.
Speak and act as those who are going to be judged by the law that gives freedom, because judgement without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgement!
What good is it, my brothers, if a man claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save him? Supposed a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, “Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? In the same way, faith by itself, if it is no accompanied by action, is dead.
But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”
Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do. You believe that there is one God. Good! Even demons believe that—and shudder.
You foolish man, do you not want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? Was not our ancestor Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar?  You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his father was made complete by what he did. And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,” and he was called God’s friend. You see that a person is justified by what he does and not by faith alone.
In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.”


• August Song of the Month •

Lion and The Lamb
by Leeland
Bethel Music


• August Recipe of the Month •

Sausage and Pepperoni Pizza Puffs

Ingredients:
– ¾ cup flour
– ¾ tsp baking powder
– ½ tsp garlic powder
– ¾ cup milk
– 1 egg, lightly beaten
– 4 oz mozzarella cheese, shredded (about 1 cup)
– 2 oz mini turkey pepperoni, (about ½ cup)
– 4 oz low-fat sausage, cooked and crumbled
– ½ cup pizza sauce

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Grease a 24-cup mini-muffin pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, garlic powder and baking powder; whisk in the milk and egg. Stir in the mozzarella, sausage and pepperoni; let stand for 10 minutes.
2. Stir the batter and divide among the mini-muffin cups. Bake until puffed and golden, 20-25 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, microwave the pizza sauce until warmed through. Serve the puffs with the pizza sauce for dipping.

Found and deliciously tested by Vasshti from the blog Make Ahead Meals for Busy Moms.
These are an absolute hit at parties! If my brother-in-law is there you better make sure to grab one before he eats them all!


• August Tip of the Month •

A Salty Cookbook

Back in the day when we were first talking about making this website we were in a time in the guild where people were always talking about food! Conversations often led to things people were eating and people were making. Recipe swapping was a thing of normalcy in the guild and thus we decided to create and forum page called “A Salty Cookbook”. A place where Saltines could share their favorites and try recipes from others. Since then we have gotten a grand total of 2 entries. This would be a very fun thing for us to do, so if you like to cook (or just like to eat) check out our Salty Cookbook and submit your favorite recipes so we can try them out!


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

July Newsletter

July 1, 2016
July Newsletter 1

“Woods are filled with the music of birds, and all nature is laughing under the glorious influence of Summer.” Charles Lanman

Happy Independence Day to all Saltines living in the grand ‘ol US of A. I know not all of you live in the USA and for you July is another hot summer month, but for US folk, July is the month of fireworks and BBQ’s. We’ve all been watching or setting off fireworks on the 4th of July since we were itty bitty and most of us still love it. I remember being a tiny tot sitting on a blanket in a grassy field watching those beautiful colors blast into the night sky. They’ve got the beauty and fascination of a starry sky with the most remarkable colors and patterns. I’ve always loved watching them. There is something about the cool air after a hot day and the anticipation that grips you as you prepare yourself for the resounding boom of the next colorful explosion. It’s a beautiful expression that our nation practices in celebration.

There has been a new man attending my church recently who has caught my eye because of his expression. He attends a different service than I do, so I don’t see him there very often, but when I do, I am amazed. He is one of those guys who really knows how to worship. I mean this guy raises his hands, sings at the top of his lungs and “thank you Jesus!”-s his was through a church service. His authenticity grips me. He is not afraid to truly be himself and cares not what others think about his worship style. This guy can worship fully and expressively and I think that is beautiful. So much of what I see in a normal church service is people whispering, not raising their hands because they are uncomfortable, and typically singing very quietly. Now, there is nothing wrong with this kind of worship because only what is in your heart matters to God. But I do love to see this obvious and outward expression of worship every week. The book of Psalms is a wonderful place to seek verses of praise to our God. Psalm 149:3 “Let them praise his name with dancing and make music to him with tambourine and harp.” Psalm 33:1-3 “Sing joyfully to the Lord, your righteous; it is fitting for the upright to praise him. Praise the Lord with the hard; make music to him on the ten-stringed lyre. Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.” Psalm 103:1 “Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name.” Psalm 113:1-3 “Praise the Lord. Praise, O servants of the Lord, praise the name of the Lord. Let the name of the Lord be praised, both now and forevermore. From the rising of the sun to the place where is sets, the name of the Lord is to be praised.” Oh man! Our God deserves our praise and worship! I hope I can learn from this new man in church and begin to worship unreservedly because our God deserves it and he wants us to praise him with all our inmost being! Praise be to the Lord the God in heaven! He is so worthy of our praise!

•  •  •

We’ve had a great month in the guild, seen a small amount of summer decline in event participation, but not near our summer norm. We’ve had huge success with grouping for weekly events, as well as other random hang outs with Saltines. God is abundantly blessing us today and always and our Saltines are evidence of that! Scribing materials have gone a bit slow, but due to reasonable Trading Post prices we have been able to get the Paper we need in order to get to Guild Level 61! We now have even more scribing recipes to learn that will get us more fun in WvW! We still need Quality Paper, Fine Paper and Smooth paper, all of which can be purchased in the Trading post for 35 silver or less. If you able to help us with a few of these, we’d be most grateful and you would be helping us approve even more fun things for our WvW adventures! We got a big donation of Cured Thick Leather Squares (thank you so much!), but will still need more if we are to finish out our upgrades, so if you have some that you aren’t doing anything with we’d love to take them off your hands for you, same goes with Elder Wood Planks. Thanks to everyone who has helped out in anyway. Even the smallest donation makes a big impact in our guild and we are beyond grateful!

Some of our weekly events have been a bit spotty lately because we have been busy, but even with the busyness we have been able to put together a third raid group! Yipee! Thanks to our new raid leader who stepped forward and offered to lead, it’s such a blessing to us and all those who are now able to raid thanks to your willingness to lead! I am very excited to see you guys grow and advance and learn and, hopefully soon, kill the vale guardian!

We’ve got a new officer on our team and he will be helping us out with events and be around for you if you ever need help or have questions or just want someone to chat with. Thanks jacobmstr for joining us and helping us out in this way! You are a blessing to us and I know that God will use you to further his kingdom in our little community.

Finally, we are going to be working on the website on July 10th and it may go down for a bit, maybe a few hours maybe a day or so. We are working on it and will have it up as soon as we can. Be sure to have our Facebook page bookmarked in case it takes a little longer to do than we thought.

That’s all from me for now. May God bless you and keep you. May He make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you. Amen.

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


• New Saltines •

ReachCivilman; Hermes; Jagean; TheCloudX; The Scarlet Raven; Tgiordano; Goop the Goon; bfrank; bryames; zkath; Asherdad; Risensoul Shockwave; Shezu Tsukai; swagbros; ponyboy; sailor; nimbus; Miriam; Austin; AlexJackson.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• July Verse of the Month •

James 1
NIV

“James, a servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,
To the twelve tribes scattered among the nations:
Greetings.

Consider it pure joy, my brother, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything. If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who give generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. But when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind. That man should not think he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all he does.
The brother in humble circumstances ought to take pride in his high position. But the one who is rich should take pride in his low position, because he will pass away like a wild flower. For the sun rises with the scorching heat and withers the plant; its blossom falls and its beauty is destroyed. In the same way, the rich man will fade away even while he goes about his business.
Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial, because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.
When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed. Then, after desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, gives birth to death.
Don’t be deceived, my dear brothers. Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does change like the shifting shadows. He chose to give us birth through the word of truth, that we might be a kind of first fruits of all he created.

My dear brother, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for a man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.
Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does.
If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

(Long I know, but it is all so good!)


• July Song of the Month •

No Longer Slaves
Jonathan and Melissa Helser
Bethel Music


• July Recipe of the Month •

Strawberry Shortcake Cheesecake

 

Ingredients:

Shortcake:
– 5 TBSP butter
– 1 ¾ cups flour
– ¼ cup sugar
– 1 ½ tsp baking powder
– ½ tsp baking soda
– ¾ + 1/8 cup heavy cream

Cheesecake Filling and Whipped Topping
– 1 ½ cups heavy cream, divided
– ¾ cup powdered sugar, divided
– 1 ¾ tsp vanilla extract, divided
– 24 oz cream cheese, room temperature
– ½ cup granulated sugar
– 1 tsp vanilla
– 2 lbs Strawberries

Strawberry Sauce
– 1 TBSP water
– ¼ cup pureed strawberries (from about 7-9 strawberries)
– ¼ cup granulated sugar
– ¾ tsp cornstarch

Directions:

Shortcake
1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place a circle of parchment paper into the bottom of a 9 inch springform cake pan and grease the sides.
2. Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and baking soda in the bowl of a food processor.
3. Add butter and mix in food processor until combined and mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
4. Slowly add heavy cream and pulse in food processor until just moistened.
5. Gather dough into a ball. Mixture will still be crumbly and loose.
6. Gently knead dough on a non-stick surface until just smooth, about five turns.
7. Press dough into and even layer in the springform pan.
8. Bake for about 20 minutes or until edges are golden.
9. Remove cake from oven and remove from cake pan. Allow to cool on cooling rack.

Cheesecake Filling and Whipped Topping
1. Freeze metal bowl and whisk for 15 minutes.
2. Remove bowl and whisk from freezer and add 1 cup of heavy cream.
3. Whip on medium-high speed for a few minutes. Cream will initially bubble a little bit, then start to thicken.
4. As the cream starts to thicken, add ½ cup of powdered sugar and ½ tsp of vanilla extract.
5. Which until soft peaks form, for a total whipping time of about 5-7 minutes. Make sure not to over mix. Set whipped cream aside.
6. Add cream cheese to a large bowl and beat until smooth.
7. Add 1 tsp vanilla extract and sugar and beat until smooth.
8. Fold in whipping cream made in steps 1-5. Set aside.
9. Freeze metal bowl for 15 minutes.
10. Remove bowl and whisk from freezer and add remaining ½ cup of heavy cream.
11. Whip on medium-high speed for a few minutes. Cream will initially bubble a little bit, then start to thicken.
12. As the cream starts to thicken, add remaining ¼ cup of powdered sugar and ¼ tsp of vanilla extract.
13. Whip until soft peaks form, for a total whipping time of about 5-7 minutes. Make sure not to over mix. Set whipped cream aside.

Strawberry Sauce
1. Add water to pureed strawberries.
2. Combine sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan. Stir in strawberry puree.
3. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture thickens and comes to a boil.
4. Allow to boil for 1 minute, then remove from heat.
5. Allow to cool while you put everything together.

Putting it all together
1. Wash and dry strawberries.
2. Slice about 6 strawberries into thin strawberries to use around outside edge.
3. Cut off tops of about 3 cups of small to medium sized strawberries. (about 18-20 strawberries)
4. Line the same 9 in springform pan used for shortcake with parchment paper on the bottom and sides. The parchment paper should stick above the edges of the map about an inch or two.
5. Place shortcake in the bottom of the pan.
6. Line the sides of the pan with the slices strawberries, using the prettiest slices.
7. Add about ½ cup of the cheesecake filling on top of the shortcake and spread into a thin layer- filling in any gaps around the shortcake and slices berries.
8. Place the strawberries, thick side down on top of the cheesecake. Leave some space between berries so that they aren’t touching and cheesecake can be added to fill in the space.
9. Drop remaining cheesecake filling on top of the strawberries in spoonfuls, making sure it fills in all the spaces. Spread the remaining cheesecake evenly over strawberries. Depending on the size of the berries, they might poke through the top of the cheesecake a bit.
10. Spread the whipped cream topping on top of the cheesecake.
11. Cover loosely and refrigerate until firm, about 4-5 hours.
12. Once firm, remove cheesecake from springform pan and top with remain strawberries, but into quarters.
13. Drizzle with strawberry sauce and refrigerate or serve.
Found and deliciously testing by Vasshti from the blog Life, Love and Sugar.
Add blueberries to your topping for a yummy Red, White and Blue 4th of July treat!


• July Tip of the Month •

Guild Commendations

You’ve been there for guild missions on Sunday and been earning many guild commendations but what do you do with them? There are a few different vendors in our guild hall that accept Guild Commendations as currency and they are all located in the Market of our guild hall. You can get a variety of items in our guild hall for these commendations including special guild weapons and armor, guild miniatures, scribing materials, ascended materials and others. Guild Commendations traders, located in the Guild Initiative Office (at Postern Ward waypoint in Lions Arch) trades a ton stuff! From him you can get tonics, miniatures, WvW siege, all sorts of banner (hero’s banner, xp banner, etc,), gear, inscriptions, ascended trinkets, back items and more! Check out these different vendors and put your hard earned commendations to good use!


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

June Newsletter

June 1, 2016
June 8

“Spring being a tough act to follow, God created June.”- Al Bernstein

June: the month of birthdays in my family. Along with January, June is the most “birthed” month of the year. When we were younger we’d have so many celebrations in January and June that my parents used to joke that when my sister and I got married it couldn’t be in the months of January or June. Years later I got married in January and my sister got married in June. Having a winter birthday I used to envy my sisters slew of June birthday pool parties and summer birthday fun. It’s just starting to get warm and my favorite fruits are now in season: cherries, strawberries, plums, peaches, blueberries, raspberries, tomatoes. There is nothing quite as wonderful as June fruit right off the tree (or plant). This year June also brings us primaries…. (and there was much rejoicing…). A lot of you have already had a chance to vote and your votes actually mattered toward potential decision making, well I, and my state, in all it’s glory…don’t really matter this year. It seems this year, and most years, by the time the primaries get to us everything has already been decided. Boy, can I tell you, I am very discouraged when it comes to politics these days. It seems every year, every week, geeze, every day our world gets farther and farther from the truth of the Bible that God laid out for us from the beginning. “God saw all that he had made, and it was very good. And there was evening, and there was morning—the sixth day. Thus the heavens and the earth were completed in all their vast array.” Genesis 1: 31. God saw what he made and called it good, it would be hard to hear what He thinks of us now. That’s the plague of sin in this world. It corrupts. It destroys. It deceives.

Usually when I am writing in my truth book I look through the bible to, in my own way, randomly stumble on a truth that I need to remember or one that the Lord leads me to. This month, in anticipation of the excitement (/sarcasm), I looked specifically for this verse, which I’ve heard over the years but never really studied. Romans 13:1-2 “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves.” ‘Ugh…do I have to Lord?’ This is pretty much what went through my head when I read this. I feel like as much as I hate where this nation is going, how its leaders are behaving, ultimately the Lord is in control. For one reason or another, and I hope it’s to wake us up, God has not only allowed, but as Romans 13:1 says, established these people in the offices they hold. I need to do my part, to vote for the candidate that I feel will best uphold the law of the Lord and lead us away from our sinful ways, but ultimately the decision is not up to me. Whoever God puts in the office this winter is the one whom he has appointed. I can’t argue with God. He knows exactly what is best for us and I trust that His hands are far reaching. He is not sleeping during this election season and He certainly has not abandoned us to our sin. “For God so loved the world that He gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:16-17. This last week in church we continued in our series on the life of David. We focused this week on 2 Samuel 22, the song of “Psalms” within 2 Samuel. “The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation. I call to the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies.” 2 Samuel 22: 2-4. We learned through this passage that the Lord is the only one we should look to when times are tough, days are dark, obstacles are overwhelming and the future is foggy. The part of the sermon that most stood out to me what when pastor Brian stated:
“Where are you looking for hope? Who are you counting on to bring meaningful change? Where are you leaning your ladder of trust in your life? If you’ve been waiting on life to give you your big break… If you’ve been counting on the advancement of civilization to usher in better days… If you’ve been trusting that the fight against terror will emerge victorious… And if you are hoping a new President will move us forward or truly make America great again…with all due respect, it’s time to reconsider where you are resting your trust. It’s time to stop putting all your trust in all these other things. ONLY GOD is your refuge and rescue. ONLY GOD is your light. ONLY GOD is your strength. ONLY GOD is your hope! David is reminding us today: ONLY GOD, NO MATTER WHAT!”
Friends, God’s got this! He is the ONLY one we can trust with our hope. No matter the circumstances or struggles in our nation or your personal life: ONLY GOD. You can now face this election season with hope, because no matter how the elections end and no matter who becomes president; friends, God is still king!

(if you’d like to watch the full sermon by Pastor Brian Long of Church of the Foothills you can do so here)

•   •   •

Summer has officially begun for many families and with that comes the slew of summer activities! Camping trips, swim parties, evening hangouts with friends, and quite often a slight decline of in game activity participation. We know summers are fun times to spend with family and friends so we don’t mind if you go a bit MIA in the summer months. That does mean, however that when we do events as a guild we may have lower numbers so don’t be alarmed if you see a decline of activity this summer; it happens every year and will pick back up again in the fall. Heck, even my schedule is busy this summer; but, as we always say, “real life comes first” so enjoy your summers! As far as weekly events go we will continue to have them as regularly as our schedules allow and I will make sure to let you know via facebook and our forums if an event is canceled.

We are talking about getting a new raid group together because we have a lot of people who have expressed interest. If you are interested in committing to a weekly raid group and are not already in a raid group let me know by either responding to my post in the facebook group, messaging me on the facebook page, emailing me at gw2saltoftheearth@gmail.com or message me in game, Vasshti.6198, and I’ll make sure to get you on the list. I don’t know exactly when this will all come together but I will keep you in the loop with any news I have.

We have gained 6 Guild levels in the last month and are now guild level 57!! We’ve hit a breakthrough with the major, and majorly expensive, guild upgrades and have been able to fly through a number of WvW upgrades. We now have lots of scribing to do so we can make schematics for WvW fun! We are in pretty major need of Elder Wood Planks and Cured Tick Leather Squares for any future WvW upgrades. We are still also in need of tons of Ley-Line infused tools so if you could please consider helping us out with those; you can, conceivably, only make about 1 of those per day but anything you can do will be a huge help to us. If you are unable to help in that area we also need tons of Piles of Coarse Sand (into the guild bank) as well Vials of Linseed oil for one other upgrade. We need a lot of paper and a few other things in small quantities, so make sure to talk to Esa the Frugal right next to the main waypoint in the guild hall to find out how you can help. Thanks in advance to anything you are able to do to help us! Your donations are a blessing not only to me but to everyone who gets to enjoy the benefits of the upgrades you help us approve!

WvW Seminar went awesome last month! We had close to 20 people show up and learn the ins-and-outs of WvW! We are hoping to start a weekly guild WvW night so be sure to watch the facebook/forums/guild Message of the Day for reminders about this. Unfortunately for now we will be limited to only taking members on Fort Aspenwood into WvW with us but, if you are on another server but want to do WvW with other saltines, you can sign up here. The seminar is already over but signing up here will tell me your server so we can get you connected with other saltines on your server so you can enjoy WvW fun with them! Anyway, that’s all from me for now. I pray you guys have a wonderful month!

May God bless you!

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


• New Saltines •

VowOfCarnage; MiahKiller; lonegreywolf; Trifork; Shinling; Tom; Peroxiss; Firefox; BurningRed; Aureol; blakkrskyrr; Hobgrumplin; Redenaz; Natieya; Jagdhund.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• June Verse of the Month •

Psalm 36:5-9
NIV

“Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens,
Your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
O Lord, you preserve both man and beast.
How priceless is your unfailing love!
Both high and low among men
find refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.”


• June Song of the Month •

Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace)
Hillsong


• June Recipe of the Month •

Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas

Ingeredients

– 1 Tablespoon chili powder
– 2 teaspoons ground cumin
– 2 teaspoons dried oregano
– 2 teaspoons salt, or more, to taste
– 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
– 4 pound pork shoulder, excess fat trimmed
– 4 cloves garlic, peeled
– 2 onions, quartered
– 2 oranges, juices
– 2 limes, juiced.

Directions

– In a small bowl, combine chili powder, cumin, oregano, salt and pepper. Season pork shoulder with spice mixture, rubbing in thoroughly on all sides.
– Place garlic, onions, orange juice, lime juice and seasoned pork shoulder into a slow cooker. Cover and cook on low heat for 8 hours or high for 4-5 hours.
– Remove pork shoulder from the slow cooker and shred the meat before returning to the pot with the juices; season with salt and pepper, to taste, if needed. Cover and keep warm for an additional 30 minutes.
– Preheat oven to broil. Place carnitas onto a baking sheet and broil until crisp and crusted, about 3-4 minutes.
– Serve immediately.

Found and deliciously tested by Vasshti from the blog damndelicious.


• June Tip of the Month •

Guild Hall Tavern Boons

Many of you worked hard to get us many materials to make Kegs and Mugs. This was a long and annoying process but now it is done and we can reap the rewards! Nathan the Bartender has guild enchantments available to all members for no charge! These enhancements include: Guild Crafting Boost-20%, Guild Map Bonus Rate Increase-10%, Guild Gathering Boost-20%, Guild Karma Boost-10%, Guild Magic Find Boost-10%, Guild XP Gain-10%, Guild PvP Reward Track Gain-10% and Guild WxP Gain-10%. Each of these enhancements lasts for 24 hours of game play! This means if you only play for an hour every day you can hold onto one enhancement for days at a time! You can only have one enhancement active at a time but you can change at any time! Be sure to stop in the tavern and pick an enhancement!


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

Salt Vs. the World

May 2, 2016
Salt Vs. the World-2

                I’d like to tell you a story, about a little guild called Salt. Once upon a time in the days before HoT and mega servers, Salt was a small Christian guild in GW2. We liked to get together every week and fight battles in WvW; proud to fight for our home server Fort Aspenwood. Then one day BAM! Mega servers! All of a sudden we could hang out and play with different people from different servers and it opened up a lot of doors to new friends! Salt experienced lots of growth as a guild but a part of that meant greater and greater numbers who were no longer on our home server, which slowly lead to no more guild WvW nights. As much as mega servers helped the community, in one small way it created a bit of a problem and that was in the WvW community. Guilds now have trouble grouping because member servers are very diverse. I know there is still interest in WvW and so we’ve been working very hard to find a way to get Salt back into the WvW scene. Here’s the plan:

1) This month on the Friday May 20th at 8:00pm EST (that’s 5:00pm PST) we will be holding a WvW seminar. The Seminar will be help by our WvW leader and professional Immunization.2761. A lot of people, myself included, have really lost touch with WvW. The new boarderlands look very confusing and I don’t know where to begin.  To top it all off, legendary journeys are requiring WvW items and that’s just impossible. Between the Boaderlands maps, Edge of the Mists and Eternal Battlegrounds I get a bit overwhelmed. Well fret no longer friends our WvW seminar will teach you all about WvW: things you need to know about the maps, map strategy, Boarderlands-Vs.-EOTM-Vs.-EB and the benefits/differences in each, reward tracks, etc. We’ll have a Q&A after the seminar and hopefully by the end we’ll all really feel confident on our understanding and capability in WvW.

2) The second part of this plan includes plans for future ongoing weekly WvW nights. When you sign up for the WvW Seminar I will also ask for you for your server. Getting a roster of people interested in WvW and what server they are on will give us a clear picture of where people are with servers so we can hopefully create a plan to get many different servers involved with weekly WvW. WvW event nights will begin after the Seminar on June 2nd and will be held on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of every month at 8:00pm EST (5:00pm PST). One way we might do this is by WvW Server Team leaders. WvW Server Team Leaders would act as individual WvW leaders by server. We will have one server team leader per represented WvW server and that server leader will take their other server members through the weekly WvW events (Our current WvW leader Immunization will remain Fort Aspenwood lead and will coordinate with all the server team leads each week to get this thing running smoothly). Groups may be very small for some servers but it would still open up a way to WvW with fellow Saltines. This is a voluntary role but we will only have one leader per server so not all who volunteer will be WvW Server leaders.

3) The final piece to this will be to open up about servers and get the word out. On the sign-up sheet you will see the option to “Share”. By this I simply mean anyone who chooses “yes” for this option will receive a private mail from me with names of other guildies (who also chose “yes”) who are interested in WvW on your server. This is a way to inform members of other Saltines on your server to make WvW on event nights and on your own easier to group. We hope this is a way we may be able to enjoy WvW as a guild.

I am looking forward to our seminar; to learning more about this piece of the game that I know very little about. I hope to connect with a bunch of you and create a new environment for fun and fellowship together. Even if you already know WvW well please use the sign-up sheet anyway so we can get a clear picture of server diversity and include you in our numbers for our planned weekly event.

Hope to see you there!

SIGN UP HERE

 

Guild Wars 2

May Newsletter

May 1, 2016
May Newsletter

“Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May.” William Shakespeare

                Most months when it comes time to write this newsletter I look into my life and share with you something amazing that God is doing in my life. Some excerpt from church or Bible study that has really touched me, or an insight the Lord has recently taught me. I don’t have any beautiful stories to share with you this month, no field frolicking, flower picking, easy life stuff this month: this month I get real, this month I get transparent.

                I struggle. I battle. I win. I lose. I fear. I stress. I worry. Some days are great, some days are not.  This is life when you struggle with anxiety. I think I’ve always struggled with this, looking back into my childhood, though it wasn’t until recently I put all the pieces together and realized this was more than childhood fear or introversion. When I was younger, I was terrified of swallowing a pill, I knew for sure I would choke on it. I still feel that way sometimes when I eat, get this panic overwhelming my thinking: “I could have just choked on that, I may have died.” I was, and still am, deathly afraid of needles. I embarrassed my mom at age 18 when she’d have to hold my hand while I fearfully tried to avoid getting a shot. Oh and don’t get me started about getting my blood drawn: terrifying.  In my adult years I have learned to cope with such things, but I still get a throat swallowing, deep stomach churn when I have to do these things. I’ve never liked to try new things, watch new movies, eat new things, meet new people, spend time with people I barely know, talk in front of groups, share my opinions and more importantly, keep up appearances with people I know. I have always lived with the “life verse” of Philippians 4:6-7 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Living on this word and in a Christian home I feel I was able to manage my anxiety pretty well, though I never openly recognized it as anxiety. (Truthfully, I may not have known it was anxiety.)

                A few years ago however, things began to spiral out of control. On May 23 2013, I was in a minor car accident (yes, I remember the exact date because I had to provide it to the doctor’s office so often). My car was totaled and yet, aside from some muscle damage, everyone was fine. I wasn’t at fault, but I t-boned a car who didn’t yield to my right-of-way. In fact, he wasn’t paying attention at all. I was quite shaken up and my muscles required intense physical therapy and massage therapy in my back and neck, of which I am still not fully recovered and might never be. I began to feel very nervous driving, feeling out of control that no matter how safely I am driving it just takes one idiot to kill us all (a little dramatic, yes; but anxiety is anything but rational). Not too long after that my Grandma broke her back and shingles, followed by a stroke; I was struck with fear that I would lose my grandma, and soon. I am happy to report she is still with us, and though not doing well (please pray for her), we are taking advantage of every day. The third piece of this dynamic trio was when I got woken up by a phone call early one morning to a very shaken father who reported that one of my young friends, only 20 years old, was found dead in his car that morning; it turned out to be drug related. My anxiety found a new mask that morning: hypochondria. From that day forward, I have been so struck with fear over sickness, injury, my own death, or death of a loved one. Every seemingly innocent thing turned into death waiting to happen. I won’t get into too many details here, but I remember one night in the fetal position rocking back and forth shaking in fear because I was sure I was going to die. Talking on the phone to my doctor didn’t help late that night and I stayed awake until, though stricken with fear, my body had to let go and get to sleep. I fear about the silliest and most irrational things: “Oh no, I just touched dirt outside then made dinner without washing my hands! What if I just poisoned us?” Yes, yes, the two magic words that the enemy whispers into our minds and controls us with. What if… What if you don’t make it home tonight? What if someone breaks in and lets the cat out? What if you forgot to close the garage door and someone breaks in and lets the cat out? What if… What if… WHAT IF! ‘What if’ never ends well for us and I find myself wide awake at nights crying out to God to take the ‘what if’s’ away. I pray specifically about the things the ‘what if’s’ are telling me will happen then I find myself stewing on them even in prayer! WHY CAN’T I JUST LET THEM GO! I tried singing, I tried praying for others, I tried to just forget, but nothing worked. The enemy knew he could slip into my mind and he gained a foothold. WELL, NO MORE! I am calling him out on that! I AM A CHILD OF GOD, YOU HAVE NO PLACE HERE!

                I’ve recently told you about my truth book: the notebook that I have been using to record God’s truth, learn His truth, and remember His truth. Now, when I wake up in fear, I remember my truth book. I don’t pray the ‘what if’s’ because I don’t want to stew on them, instead I pray the word of God. Instead I pray “Lord cast out the ‘what if’s’ and put my mind on ‘whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent and praiseworthy—think about such things” (Philippians 4:8, I find it ironic how for so many years I lived by Philippians 4:6-7 and yet this was just one verse further). When I pray the scriptures, the enemy doesn’t stand a chance. But, in order to pray the scriptures, I need to truly know them. My truth book helps with that.

                I’m not alone in this within my family, though my husband and parents don’t suffer with anxiety, my uncle does. He just recently had a serious bout with anxiety and we were able to talk together share our stories and our struggles. He gave me this book that he read, one that helped him beyond words and he hoped it might help me too. It was written by his pastor and it is called, “How to Live in Fear: Managing the Art of Freaking Out” by Lance Hahn. I have been so encouraged by this book. The first part of the book is him telling us his story. You don’t know the freedom I felt upon reading the stories of another who suffers as I do. His anxiety is far more extreme than mine, but I saw common themes, I saw common stressors and shared fears. I saw someone who can truly understand how it feels to fear uncontrollably, especially as a Christian, who worries maybe we just don’t trust God enough. It’s not about your trust, it’s about a disorder that God can use to strengthen you, even if it doesn’t appear to be working. He talks about how others treat him and talk to him about his fear, he talks about different ways he’s learned to combat the fear, both physically and mentally. He talks about inside help like spiritual disciplines, laughter, boundaries, journaling, and counseling. He talks about outside help like, exercise, sleep and rest, regular doctor’s visits, and hobbies. This is not a “if you do these things you’ll get better” but are real experiences from a fellow suffer and what helped him. It’s given me many ideas on things to try the next time I suffer an anxiety attack. He talks about opening up to those you care about; sharing your hurts and your fears so they may better understand and help you. Sharing with others can also help them know they are not alone in what feels like such a ridiculous and irrational disorder. And for me it’s identifying the culprit behind the curtain and calling him out on it so he can’t hide there anymore.

                It looks like there is some beauty in this story after all and that is God’s grace and love. Since the days of ‘plant touching death’ I have grown a lot in my relationship with God and my trust in Him. I have learned to give things into His hands though it is NOT easy to do so. God has filled me with my own tricks to shut the enemy out and fill my life with Him. I still struggle and I am sure I always will. I am still reading this awesome book and I have just gotten to the section where he will talk about the spiritual aspect of fear. I look forward to reading about the hope in Christ, much of which I have already found. God is good my friends! He can take even the seemingly uncontrollable in your life and take control of it! He can turn my fear around and no matter how many times I give in to the ‘what if’s’ and lose sight of him for a moment, he will never give up on me and he will always be right where I left him, ready to pick up out of the rubble and set me in flight once again.

If you struggle with anxiety I’d encourage you to share it with your close friends and family. You are not weak by feeling this way; such strength comes when the people you love can carry the weight with you. I’d also encourage you to check out this book, only $9.00 on Amazon; it is worth every penny. Be encouraged my friends because joy comes in the morning (Psalm 30:5).

 “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

•   •   •

There’s been a lot of exciting this things happening in GW2 this month, the most notable of which was the April 19th update. This was an awesome and very much needed quarterly update that brought a few cool new things into the game. The pieces of the update that I believe to be the best, were the improved dungeon rewards, fractal changes, and the level 80 booster. Dungeons used to be a big thing to a lot of people, myself included; but when HoT came out they seriously reduced the rewards which made them almost worthless. While the recent update didn’t seem to affect the immediate gold you receive from the dungeon it did hugely increase the token reward and it created a new repeatable achievement that awards 5 Gold for every 8 dungeons completed. The fractal changes included a new set of fractal dailies! There are now dailies for each tier and specific fractal islands. I hope this is effective in eliminating the slew of “55, 67, 77” groups that only do Swampland. One minor update to fractals includes the scale setting sequencer which now has a drop down bar with all the available fractals listed by both number and name. While not super important to the game play of fractals, this sure is a nice feature. The level 80 booster was an incredible surprise! Anyone who purchased HoT received this item in their inventory via a shared inventory slot (anyone who purchased or purchases HoT after the patch date will also receive this). It advertises getting your character to level 80, but it does much more than that. You have the option to try out being level 80 before you consume the item, so you can choose to not consume the item and it goes back into your inventory so you can use it at a later time. Their thought in creating this item was that HoT is a strictly level 80 area and they wanted people to be able to experience it as soon as possible. Consuming the level 80 booster drops your character right into the Silverwastes so you can take off with the HoT story line. On top of leveling to 80 and being put in the Silverwastes, the booster also fully gears your character with level 80 exotic armor, weapons and trinkets and traits, it gives you 5 Teleport to friend stones, 2 Gold, 2 dye packs, 1 celebration booster, 4 15 slot leather bags, 25 mango pies, 25 superior sharpening stones, a mystic salvage kit, a set of Orichalcum mining picks, logging axes and harvesting sickles; to top it all off, consuming the item opens up the shared inventory slot for your use, forever! Talk about one heck of an item. Anet really outdid themselves on this one (or maybe they were sucking up for all the bugs that HoT brought). There were many other things, big and small, that changed during the update if you would like to read the full patch list you can do so here.

Guild updates are going pretty well and we got ourselves up to guild level 51! Aetherium takes about 6 days to fully acquire so we find ourselves waiting around a lot. We’re ready to approve our Syntehsis output 4 which is the last upgrade in our Workshop! After that one is done we have two more upgrades available in the Mine, two more in the Arena, and two more in the Marketplace; most of which are almost ready to approve (as Aetherium allows of course). Once those main things are done we can start working on the War room a bit more. Since our guild is so much of a mega server guild, WvW is very hard for us to as a guild, therefore I have been focusing on upgrades that will benefit more members; but once those are done we can start picking away at those. We need lots of paper, extra coarse sandpaper, smooth paper, fine paper, quality paper and rough paper for the War Room upgrades so if you are a scribe and able to help us start accumulating paper that would be a huge blessing to us.

On the subject of WvW and the difficulties we face as a mega server guild, I want to let you know about an awesome special event we are planning for this month. On the 20th we will be holding a WvW Seminar! This is a chance to re-connect as a guild in the WvW capacity. We will be talking and training in WvW strategy, teaching about the different maps, the reward tracks and all the basic WvW need-to-knows. There will be a Q&A section for the seminar and it’s our hope that at the end we will have a better understanding of the maps and feel more confident running them together. We will be holding sign-ups for the seminar on the website very soon and included in the sign-up sheet we will be asking what server you are on. We are hoping that by taking a poll of those interested and your home server that we can get a clear picture of where everyone is so we can create a way to get weekly WvW back on the calendar regardless of your server. More information is to come on that front so be sure to check the website frequently and I will get that out in a matter of days. I am looking forward to this event because I have been nothing but lost on the new borderland maps and I hope a bunch of you will consider joining me for this awesome learning experience. Well, I think I’ve stolen enough of your attention for one month, look forward to seeing you in-game soon. Goodbye for now.

I pray that the Lord blesses you this month. I pray that He continues to work in our guild; that He grows it and leads it in His will and His timing. “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.” Psalm 13:5-6

God bless you,

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


•New Saltines•

Naesjasper; ProfCarson; techymath; Annima Icicle; Tasiana; offroadtwo; cloakanddagger; Demon Hunter; CrazyRabidSquirrel; undiepoo; Sunkook.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


•May Verse of the Month•

Psalm 103
NIV

“Praise the Lord, O my soul:
all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
Praise the Lord, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits-
who forgives all your sins
and heals all your diseases,
who redeems you from the pit
and crowns you with love and compassion,
who satisfied your desires with good things
so that your youth is renewed like the eagles.
The Lord works righteousness
and justice for all the oppressed.
He made known his ways to Moses,
his deeds to the people of Israel:
The Lord is compassionate and gracious,
slow to anger, abounding in love.
He will not always accuse,
nor will he harbor his anger forever;
he does not treat us as our sins deserve
or repay us according to our iniquities.
For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his love for those who fear him;
as far as the east is from the west,
so far has he removed our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him;
for he knows how we are formed,
he remembers that we are dust.
As for man, his days are like grass,
he flourishes like a flower of the field;
the wind blows over it and it is gone,
and its place remembers it no more.
But from everlasting to everlasting
the Lord’s love is with those who fear him,
and his righteousness with their children’s children-
with those who keep his covenant
and remember to obey his precepts.
The Lord has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.
Praise the Lord, you his angels,
you mighty ones who do his bidding,
who obey his word.
Praise the Lord, all his heavenly hosts,
you his servants who do his will.
Praise the Lord, all his works
everywhere in his dominion.
Praise the Lord, O my soul”


•May Song of the Month•

Since Your Love
United Pursuit
ft. Brandon Hampton


•May Recipe of the Month•

Blueberry Pie 

3/4 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups fresh blueberries
1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
1 tablespoon butter

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F
Mix sugar, cornstarch, salt, and cinnamon, and sprinkle over blueberries.
Line pie dish with one pie crust. Pour berry mixture into the crust, and dot with butter. Cut remaining pastry into 1/2 – 3/4 inch wide strips, and make lattice top. Crimp and flute edges.
Bake pie on lower shelf of oven for about 50 minutes, or until crust is golden brown.
Recipe from allrecipes.


•May Tip of the Month•

 Event Reminders

Did you know that we post event reminders in many different places? Each event is accompanied by a reminder on the Facebook Page, the Facebook Group, Salt Twitter feed (@salt_gaming) and our Forum page. Don’t want to check the forum page every day to see if there is an event? You can subscribe to the Event Reminder forum and be notified every time we post a reminder, then you will never miss an event!


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Christianity

“God’s Crazy Game Changer”

April 20, 2016
David

In the past months, my church, Church of the Foothills, has been going through a sermon series on the life of David. Most people who have known Christ for a number of years are familiar with the extraordinary life of King David and yet, for me, I heard a new story this week. A part of David’s story that I wasn’t familiar with; and it was beautiful. Pastor Brian Long showed us an amazing story in 2 Samuel this week and painted the most beautiful picture of God’s love for us and his amazing “game changing grace”. I sincerely hope you will be able to take some time out of your day to hear this story and this picture of God’s grace!

God bless you all!

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11

www.cotf.org

Guild Wars 2

April Newsletter

April 1, 2016
April Newsletter 2

 “Spring is nature’s way of saying, “Let’s party!” –  Robin Williams

Some of you may have heard my ramblings, my whining, and my worry regarding the three year drought that has plagued my area. With very little rain or snow in the past few years left our lakes low, our streams empty, our water supply running out, and our local critters thirsty. This drought has been an eye opener to a lot of people that we use too much water for unnecessary things. People started rationing and we’ve been given specific watering days, so we don’t use too much on our lawns. Many people have removed their lawns for rock gardens, caught their shower water to water their gardens, and learned new ways to save what precious water we do have.  A local lake started off the season about this time last year being 150 feet low and by the end of the season sat over 300 feet low. We began to fear we’d run out of water; there was already talk of one town who ran out and had to have water shipped into their town! We began to worry that our precious lake with our boats would dry up completely and we wouldn’t get to enjoy them at all this summer. And in our heat, that’s torture! We began to feel sadness over the dying plants, the empty creeks and dead grassy hills, which brought many fires. I noticed myself being a bit concerned about the water, but not overly worried for Jesus says in Matthew 7:25-27 “Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not your life more important than food; and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air they do not sow or reap or store away in barns but your heavenly father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than them? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” I am happy to report that God is faithful. He says He will provide and we need not worry about anything; and friends, He provided! As of today the lake sits at only 40 feet low. We have tons of snow in the mountains, the hills are green, and all our local streams and lakes are full to the brim! I’ll have to add that verse to my truth book.

Last month I told you about a new Bible study I started, the Armor of God, by Priscilla Shirer. I just love it so much that I want to tell you even more about it. The lesson of Week Two was all about the belt of truth. I learned through this study that in ancient days the warriors would wear this belt for a couple different reasons. First of all they used it to gird their loins; they would take up pieces of their long tunic and tuck it into the belt in order to give them more mobility. They would also use it as core support. This heavy thick leather belt went around their core and helped them support the weight of the rest of their armor. Priscilla teaches that, like the belt would support warriors of old, the truth of God’s word is our necessary core support to help us hold the weight of… well, just about everything. We need to know the truth so we can weigh the world by it, so it can hold the weight of the rest of the armor of God and so we won’t be deceived by the evil one and his long list of “almost-right” things.

I feel like, growing up in a Christian home, I know the Bible, I know the truth and I know God. So why am I tripping up on things so much? Do I really know the truth to my core; can I really trust my knowledge of the truth to support my life? That is a question I didn’t really like the answer to. During that week of bible study I decided that I needed to increase my knowledge, I needed to find passages in the bible that boldly speak the truth and I need to truly know them. I decided to start a truth book. I found this beautiful green moleskin notebook at Target and started finding truths that I needed or wanted to know. I started with the 10 Commandments because “start at the very beginning, a very good place to start” (Sound of Music, anyone?). That is the most basic truth the Bible has for us. The idea of this wasn’t to find the do’s and don’ts of the Bible. Not to feel restricted or trapped by the “rules” of the religion, because that’s not what it’s about. I love the Lord my God with all my heart, with all my soul with all my mind and with all my strength and because of that, I want to live within the boundaries that he set. James 1:21-22 “Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”

The second armor of God is the breastplate of righteousness. God gracefully credits us with righteousness that we do not deserve: Romans 4: 22-24 “This is why ‘it was credited to him as righteousness.’ The words ‘it was credited to him’ were written not for him (Abraham) alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness—for us who believe in him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead.” How can I practice living righteously if not by the examples and directions that we find in Scripture? I’ll admit, I’m a busy human who always seems to find things that need to be done before Bible study, but the days that I search through God’s Word to find new additions to my truth book and read through those truths I have copied already, I am unstoppable. The Lord fills me so much with the core strength that His truth brings up and no weight is more than I can bear. Praise be to the Lord in Heaven! April’s verse of the month is straight from the truth book, but I wanted to share with you a few more excerpts that I have found. I really hope they will encourage you in your search for truth. Romans 12:9-21; Ephesians 4:25-32; Ephesians 5:1-21 and 1 Thessalonians 5:12-24. Though these are only a few that I have found, each one teaches me something about practicing righteousness in my daily life. Take heart my friends, in the midst of struggle, spiritual attack, and just plain busyness, the Lord has given the ultimate tool that can guide us to live as He has created us to live. If, like me, you feel your spiritual core strength is weak I encourage you this month, seek the truths in the bible for yourselves. Write them down, memorize them, or even just search through and read them; a few every day. I guarantee the Lord will bless your search, teach you more about His loving grace, and how to live in practical righteousness.

•    •    •    •

This month in the guild we have seen increased improvement and a few new things in the guild hall. We are now up to guild level 49; and while improvements are slowing we are still seeing them come in with further benefits for our members. A couple of the major improvements we got to approve this month include Decorations Merchant 2 and Atherium Capacity 6. Both required lots of hard to get materials and are a major accomplishment. We have also approved Guild Hall swiftness +33%, Scribing: Sabotage Depot and WvW: Keep Capture. A lot of the upgrades we have available now need a lot of hard to get things and I know a lot of Saltines have had their materials storage cleaned out a few times helping us get there. It will take time to recover from that kind of material donation and so we’re seeing a slow in donations, which means a slowing of upgrade approvals. This is all fine and dandy. I am more than happy to slowly chip away at the remaining upgrades as we’ve gotten all the major ones we need. So, if you are able to, keep an eye on the message of the day and check with Esa the Frugal in the guild hall to donate anything you may be able to spare. Events have been plugging along at the normal rate and we’ve been having a lot of fun with those. TBDT has been starting a bit earlier, about 7 or 8 pm EST so we have time to really enjoy ourselves before I have to make dinner (gotta feed the husband sometime J ). Most of our events usually have a spot or two open once they begin, so don’t be shy and lets fill up those groups with Saltines! We’d love to hear your input or event ideas, so feel free to shout out if you’ve got any!

I pray that the Lord blesses you this month. I pray that He continues to work in our guild; that He grows it and leads it in His will and His timing. “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.” Psalm 13:5-6

God bless you,

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


•New Saltines•

Luvsharmony, Bumrush, sozbun, Agthie, Ragnarok, alpha, Chris, iZakari, Zionic, MontagGG, Kerrigan Bandicoot, Coffeesloth, RainbowGeckoGirl.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


•April Verse of the Month•

Colossians 3:1-17

“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory.
Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. Because of these, the wrath of God is coming. You used to walk in these ways, in the life you once lived. But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage malice, slander and filthy language from your lips. Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator. Here there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised of uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave or free, but Christ is all, and is in all.
Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”


•April Song of the Month•

There is power
Lincoln Brewster


•April Recipe of the Month•

Cheese Scalloped Potatoes

Ingredients:
4-5 cups thinly sliced potatoes
3T butter
3T flour
1 1/2 cups milk
1 tsp salt
1 dash cayenne pepper
1 cup grated cheese
1/2 cup grated cheese for top

Directions:
In a small pan, melt butter. Blend in flour. Let cook for a minute.
Add all of the cold milk, whisk.
Season with salt and pepper.
Cook on low until smooth and boiling.
Reduce head and stir in the cheese.
Place 1/2 of the potatoes in a greased pan. You’ll need a pan a little larger than a 9/13….I use a round corningware.
Pour 1/2 of the cheese sauce over the potatoes, then repeat with remaining potatoes and sauce.
Sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
Top with paprika.

Bake 1-1 1/2 hours at 350° F.

Found and deliciously tested by Vasshti from the blog The Chocolate In My Life.


•April Tip of the Month•

Guild Hall

Do you know about all the awesome buffs/mats/items available to you in the guild hall? Nathan the Bartender in the tavern has a list of available buffs including XP gain, % Magic find gain and many others. Our Workshop has logging, mining and plant nodes that give you a considerable mat collection and they can be harvested once every day! Also interact with the scribe table, whether you’re a scribe or not, and have access to your full guild bank and collections tab. The Marketplace has our guild trader who sells various items in exchange for guild commendation, giving you a great way to use those that you earn from guild missions. You can trade up to three times a day to the guild trader. We have a guild armorer and a guild weapon smith that can give you special guild armor and weapons. Near the marketplace we have the basic merchant, I love using this merchant as a go to from anywhere in the world. I can just go to the guild hall do my trading and access my bank without leaving where I am in the world. Easy peasy! On top of all of this, all members have access to our guild portal which is a free and easy way to get to Lions Arch from anywhere! I hope you’ll take advantage of all these wonderful things we’ve built up for you. And remember if you can please talk to Esa the Frugal to find out what else we need for future upgrades! Enjoy!


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

March Newsletter

March 1, 2016
March Newlsetter

“It was one of those March days when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold: when it is summer in the light, and winter in the shade.” – Charles Dickens

Oh, the inevitable indecision of the weather this month. The constant battle between: “Do I wear shorts or pants? ….ah, I’ll just bring a sweater.” One day we have sun and 75° while the next day is cold, dark and rainy. Bringing the flowers, but melting the snow. I can never decide if I like the sudden change, or if it’s too soon; but not to worry, next week it will be winter again. It’s a bit of a ‘best of both worlds’ kind of thing, we get to enjoy both hot and cold before bolting right into the hot and dry of summer. This time of year is beautiful though. My daffodils are blooming and all my fruit trees have blossoms, boasting of the tasty fruit yet to come. There’s a renewed feeling coming from the earth, as it wakes from its slumber, as life is put back into the ground.
The world around us is not the only thing subject to this kind of renewal; I feel it in my own life too. As the world warms up, I feel myself coming out of my own winter hibernation. I can enjoy the outside again, the warmth of the sun on my skin, and it’s amazing. God’s grace renews my soul day by day!

We just started a new Bible study at church: The Armor of God by Priscilla Shirer. You might recognize Priscilla Shirer as the lead in the recent film War Room, but I know her from her amazing women’s Bible studies. Her studies challenge me, they force me to dig deep into the Word and from the Word I learn amazing things. We are only a couple weeks into the study, but already I feel conviction and fascination. I’ve already learned a lot about the gifts of the Lord, the Armor of God and how I can use these things to not only grow in my faith and knowledge of the One who made me, but also to know, to my core, the truth of God and use that in my daily wrestling match with the evil one. I won’t quote the whole study to you, but I will tell you one encouragement that I have learned so far. Ephesians 6:12 “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.” This can be a bit daunting, how are we supposed to fight these forces when they are in the spiritual realm? Priscilla’s study pointed us to a little earlier in the book: Ephesians 2:4-6 “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” In Day 2 of her study she says “Turns out, you’re not such an earthling after all.” “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh” (2 Cor. 10:3). Not only is every spiritual blessing you will ever need for walking in victory in heavenly places, but right now as you hold this book, you too are seated in heavenly places with Christ at the right hand of the Father.” This encourages me. I have a tendency to overestimate the enemy, to view him as God’s equal, but opposite, but that is not true. Priscilla points out “Satan knows that he cannot destroy you. Too late for that. The best he can do (and he intends to make full use of it) is to make your time on earth futile and unproductive, to suffocate you with sin, insecurity, fear and discouragement until you are unable to live freely and fully.” I have been through a great deal of fear and anxiety. Reading this gave me so much hope. Satan will try to scare me, give me “what-ifs,” but he cannot destroy me. I can put on the full armor of God and use it during those times and come out victorious with the truth, hope and grace of our loving Savior. I encourage you, especially if you feel the same as me, under-equipped to fight in the heavenly realms, read through the book of Ephesians, learn about the armor of God and how your Lord equips you. He’s a gracious and wonderful God and He will see you through trials, trials of many kinds.

•    •    •

This has been an exciting month for us in terms of Guild Hall upgrades! We completed a few major upgrades which are huge accomplishments for us: Workshop Restoration 2, Mine Excavation 3 and Further Exploration! Along with the additional minor upgrades we have been able to hit a total guild level of 46!! With only a few more upgrades available in each of our 4 major categories (Workshop, Market, Tavern, Mine) we are surprisingly close to being done! The addition of our workshop restoration opened up new ore, lumber and plant synth which we have been able to upgrade a bit, giving you a chance of better materials out of those nodes in our guild hall. We are working on getting our Synthesis Output 3 and will hopefully be able to approve it soon. Synth Output 3 will let us harvest a greater number of mats out of the Guild Hall resource nodes. More mats = 🙂 Saltines. Thanks to our Tavern Restoration 2 we were able to unlock and approve Guild Hall swiftness +22% and +10% waypoint discounts throughout Tyria for all guild members! These upgrades are sure paying off! There are new Mini’s available for purchase in our Market and tons of new obstacles to play around with in the arena. Further exploration was, for me, the most exciting upgrade we were able to get this month. The addition the extra rooms and removal of the rubble (we are finally done with ALL rubble piles, woohoo!) opened up some amazing new places to explore. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out I hope you get to do so soon; it’s awesome! Thank you to all Saltines who donated toward these awesome new upgrades, and thanks in advance to any future donations. I’ll try to keep an updated list of guild hall needs in the forums and on Facebook, but if I fail to do so, I DO always keep the highest priority needs in the guild Message of the Day on the guild panel so you can check there. Thanks again my friends!
Events have been plugging along and we’ve had great attendance in them. Got questions/requests for event? Let me know in game, we always love input from our Saltines!
God is good to our guild and our friends. Continue to be an encouragement to each other in word and in deed. May the Lord bless you this month!

God bless you,

Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


• New Saltines •

Brothermike, THuGaNoMiX, laydia, IBananaMaNI, Trippy, ArcadeRepair, grimnal, drifter, Casual Dad, williamdj, Wildoakinc, Harlequin Frost, kragik, rosewal, Essential, PurpleCookies, Quasicrystal, tigereflex, Stunned Duck, jaybird, Dponti.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• March Verse of the Month •

Ephesians 6:10-20

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. And pray, in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.
Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.”


• March Song of the Month •

Divine Romance
Phil Wickham


• March Recipe of the Month •

Buttermilk Biscuits

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cups unbleached Self-Rising Flour (I’ve been buying the King Arthur brand for years… their flour is unbleached and contains aluminum-free baking powder) + a little extra
4 Tbsp Unsalted Butter
3/4 cup Buttermilk

How to:
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
Measure out 1 1/2 cups of self-rising flour and pour into a large mixing bowl. Keep your flour handy – we’ll be using it again! Cut 4 Tbsp of cold butter into small chunks and place in the bowl with the flour. Using a pastry blender (or two butter knives) cut the butter into the flour until the butter looks like little crumbs. Measure about 3/4 cup of buttermilk and pour into the flour/butter mixture. Stir the ingredients just until everything comes together. Do not worry too much about all the flour being incorporated… we will knead it into a smooth ball soon.

Dump the dough onto a floured surface. You’re going to start kneading it, so if the dough is sticky, sprinkle a little more flour on top. Knead the dough until it becomes a soft ball… it won’t take long. As you knead, the dough will likely turn sticky again, so just sprinkle in a little more flour if that happens. (Or use a stand mixer with dough hook attachment and knead on medium/low speed until smooth).

Using your rolling pin, roll out the dough until you achieve a desired thickness. We love fluffy biscuits, so I roll mine out about 3/4″ thick. Now you’re ready to cut out your biscuits! You will have to roll out your dough again a couple more times before all the dough is used up. If the dough is so sticky that it won’t come out of the biscuit cutter, lightly pat a little flour over the top of the dough. As you cut out your biscuits, place them in an ungreased cast-iron skillet.  This will result in a biscuit that is slightly crunchy on the outside with a light, buttery texture inside.  Yum!  Now pop them into the oven.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

Found and deliciously tested by Vasshti from the blog Keeping it Cozy


• March tip of the Month •

Guild Wars 2 Gaming Resources

Did you know that we have a list of our most used game resources on our website? That’s right! Our favorites include Dulfy.net for Boss Timers and Guild Mission guides, Guild Wars 2 Spidy for Trading Post prices, and GW2 Wiki for most everything else. Check it out!
(Guild Wars 2 Tab → GW2 Resources)


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

February Newsletter

February 1, 2016
February 3

Late February days; and now, at last,
Might you have thought that winter’s woe was past;
So fair the sky was, and so soft the air.
~William Morris

For many of you February is a white and cold month, snow covered from start to finish. Snowmen and snow plowing are still a regular thing for you. For me though, February brings the beginnings of spring. The bulbs we planted last fall are beginning to pop up, flowers are blooming on the daisy bushes and the rain brings life back into the hills. The rain we’ve been getting this year is such a huge blessing from God. Our drought thirsty earth is being refreshed. We’ve got an amazing God who loves us!

February is a beautiful time of year a time to enjoy the beginnings of spring and a time to celebrate the love we share with the people we care about. I’ve heard Valentine’s Day also called “Singles Awareness Day” for those without a spouse or significant other. Why does Valentine’s Day have to be about a romantic kind of love? I love all sorts of people and I want to celebrate all our love. The love I have for my parents and grandparents, my siblings and cousins, aunts and uncles, my friends and church family, let’s rejoice and celebrate all the love Christ gives us! Above all kinds of love, is the love the Lord our God holds for us. We can combine and double all the love we share with those around us and it still would not match the love our God has for us. “But you, O Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.” Psalm 86:15.

Rest in His love my friends and the love of those around you, romantically or not. Every day is a day to appreciate the love we share, but this month, most of all, let us tell the world of the love our Savior shares for each and every one of us.

•   •   •

This last month in the guild has been amazing. By the wonderfully generous donations of so many Saltines we were able to complete the building of our Tavern (Tavern Restoration 2)! This build required 1000 elder wood planks, 300 glass mugs and 200 empty kegs. At one time it look impossible, but through your faithful giving it came together and it looks great! We got up to guild level 37 this month and are only 3 levels away from 40 which will give us access to the guild upgrade “Further Exploration”. This upgrade will open new doors and allow us to explore the far reaches of our guild hall! This is very exciting to me! With only three levels to go we are focusing on a few different upgrades to get us there. First off is Workshop Restoration 2 this will get us a whole level but it is a little challenging to get as it requires 400 Vials of Linseed oil. Seeing how beautifully our Tavern came together I have no doubt that if we work together it will get done in no time! We will also work on building up our mine some more as well as our War Room Restoration 2, but lets focus on the workshop first, so we don’t get overwhelmed.

Last month members gained access to Guild Portal and WvW claiming. I love being able to port to the guild hall for free then use the guild portal to get myself to Lions Arch, now all members can open the guild portal (though unfortunately there aren’t very many locations you can get to, but it’s a fun and easy way to get to LA from the guild hall). Members can also now claim objectives in WvW! Claiming doesn’t cost anything but only one objective per map can be claimed at a time so please keep this in mind when you are playing. Hopefully now we can get some more fun WvW time with other Saltines. Salt is based in Fort Aspenwood but I believe you can WvW and still claim on a different server. I don’t know for sure so if you try it on a server that is not FA let me know how it goes!

Gliding and the Lunar New Year event came to Tyria last week as well as so many updates that it takes ages to load into the game, but it is well worth it. Ever since the release of HoT last October I have been trying to glide in central Tyria with no success. I am so glad that they brought it to central Tyria so quickly! My first gliding attempt was off of Rata Sum, a beautiful glide with a one way ticket to Rata Sum jail, do not pass go and do not collect $200. A couple things we have learned about gliding: it cannot be used with diving goggles (which is a bit of a bummer) and it cannot be done in WvW. I’m sure we’ll learn more about gliding restrictions in the future, but until then, let’s all glide around to our hearts content! The Lunar New year should be around for about 2 weeks so I encourage you to check it out, it’s a great way to make gold and enjoy some fun! Lunar New Year Tip: After you’ve collected a good size stack of lucky envelopes try going to the Silverwastes and completing the Vine Wrath event. This event will give you tons of extra magic find which will give you a greater chance of great rewards out of the envelopes.

Events have picked up again now that the holiday season is over. TBDT is back in full swing but will be starting earlier from now on. It used to start at 9:00pm EST but will now be starting at 8:00pm EST (or earlier as announced for special events) so keep that in mind for our Tuesday fun. Guild missions have been going great and we’ve been having lots of Saltines show up for that, always one of my favorite nights of the week! One of our Raid groups has successfully taken out the Vale Guardian and the other is close. Congratulations to you guys on such an amazing accomplishment! I hope you will consider joining us for some of our events in the future. You can find event reminders on our forums, Facebook page and twitter.

The Lord is the engine which drives our guild. He is reason behind it and it is to Him we give all the credit for the wonderful bounty of friends and family in our guild. I pray that He blesses you this month.

God bless you,
Jess (Vasshi, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11


• New Saltines •

Justice Served; Lady M; reffcap; Sorrow; Odee; Takara; Jaberse; Kevaros; Braydwyn; Jonathan; Prototype; Ardennes; caranel; Layzie; Kelvanis; That Guy; jojo.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• February verse of the Month •

Exodus 20:1-17

“And God spoke all these words:
‘I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
You shall have no other gods before me.
You shall not make for yourself and idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the water below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generations of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
You shall not misuse the name of the Lord your God, for the Lord will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates. For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the Lord your God is giving you.
You shall not murder.
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not steal.
You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.’”


• February song of the Month •

Call it grace
by: Unspoken


• February Recipe of the Month •

Naughty Doughnuts
“Why are they naughty? Because they are WAY too easy for the amount of amazing that they taste.”

Ingredients:
1 Package canned biscuits (anything but the flakey kind, I use Grands Buttermilk Biscuits)
Melted butter in a shallow bowl (4 tbls per 8 biscuits give or take)
Sugar & Cinnamon in a shallow bowl. (Mixed together in your favorite proportions…I like a nice medium brown mixture.)
Veggie oil to fill your pan up to about 1/2in or so

Heat up oil for a few minutes on medium heat.
While it is heating up, cut holes in the donuts with a cookie cutter or some other circular object.
When one side is golden brown, flip with tongs. When that side is golden remove from oil and place on a paper towel lined pan or plate.
When the donuts have cooled enough to handle…using your fingers dip one side in the melted butter, let the excess drip off, dip in cinnamon and sugar mixture. Get it nice and coated. Flip over and repeat for the other side.
Done.

Recipe from the blog littlebitfunky.


• February Forum Tip of the Month •

Event Reminders

Did you know that there is now a completely new forum category just for event reminders? That’s right! Now you can find all event reminders much easier on our Event Reminder forum page. All events are labeled with their date and activity name to make it easier for you to find! Hope to see you at our events soon!

(Community Tab→Forums→Guild Wars 2→Event Reminders)


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16

Guild Wars 2

January Newsletter

January 1, 2016
January Newsletter

“January is here, with eyes that keenly glow,
A frost-mailed warrior
striding a shadowy steed of snow.”
– Edgar Fawcett

2016. No, wait, hear that again: 2016. Can you believe the New Year brings numbers like 2016?! It sounds so weird, as do all years when they are just beginning. Yesterday it was December 2015 and today it is January 2016. Though, the day looks no different, doesn’t look special but that one day difference took us into a totally new year! Every year whether we are together or apart my family has a New Year tradition of telling each other everything we haven’t done ALL YEAR! “Hey Mom, I haven’t brushed my teeth ALL YEAR!! Oh yea? Well I haven’t eaten anything ALL YEAR!” It has always seemed almost strange to us that two different years can be only a minute apart, so much is gone and so much to come.
Did you know that 45% of Americans make New Year’s resolutions? Did you know that of that 45% only about 8% are successful at keeping them? Why do we wait until the New Year to decide to change the way we live? Why can’t more people make March resolutions, or summer resolutions? There is something about the start of a new year that just makes us want to start fresh too. The top 10 most popular New Year’s resolutions are to: 1) lose weight, 2) get organized, 3) spend less, save more, 4) enjoy life the fullest, 5) stay fit and healthy, 6) learn something exciting, 7) quit smoking, 8) help others in their dream, 9) fall in love, 10) spend more time with family. While all of those resolutions are fine and dandy, I can’t help but notice that they are all kind of about yourself and not others. I do believe we should resolve to be healthier and spend less money in the New Year I also believe we need to resolve to be healthier in our spirit and spend more time with God in the New Year. I like a resolution list more like this:
1) Lose fear, gain trust. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7
2) Organize my life around God’s will. “For it is God who works in you to will and you act according to his good purpose.” Philippians 2:13
3) Spend less on myself, give more. “Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” 2 Corinthians 9:7
4) Trust God to the fullest. “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.” Psalm 20:7
5) Stay spiritually fit and healthy. “For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8
6) Teach someone about God, that’s exciting. “Then Jesus came to them and said, ‘All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.’” Matthew 28:18-20
7) Quit hating, love more unconditionally. “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength’. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:30-31
8) Forgive more freely. “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, ‘Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?’ Jesus answered, ‘I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.’ ”
9) Fall away from sins and temptations. “Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression.” Psalm 19:13
10) Trust God more universally. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6
“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” Philippians 4:8
These are the types of resolutions that really count. How many of those will you resolve to do this New Year?
• • •
The guild has come a long way in its upgrades this past month. We’ve had a hard list we’ve been working on, but the diligent giving of our saltines has shown so much progress on our upgrades. We’ve hit guild level 31 and with that seen the addition of green team, brawling obstacles and a barrier in our arena; we’ve completed our market restoration 2 and unlocked new items in the merchants there and seen the quality and quantity of our guild resource nodes improve. We are still working on witling down the needed kegs and mugs for our tavern restoration 2 and, while it will be slow, it is looking less impossible to get all the needed materials. We had a great Christmas season with our Guild Wide secret Santa gift exchange and our Forum Raffle Contest; both were very fun, thank you to everyone who joined us for those!
Our guild events have been a little MIA over the past month, with good reason. December is a busy, busy time for everyone, all event leaders included. Now that the New Year has come and the holiday season winding down you should see an increase in events again. TBDT, Dungeons and Fractals will all kick back up in high gear this week (January 3-8) and Caiti has a birthday on January 6th so be sure to invade her in game mail with birthday wishes! We’ve been having some success with our Saturday night (at 8:00pm EST) raiding night. Raiding slots are first come first serve. The groups have been figuring out how to work together and gear to get the best possible outfit to defeat the Vale Guardian. While we haven’t had any successful runs yet, we have been getting close. I hope you can join us for that. As always our guild missions are a great way to hang out with guildies and work as a team to get commendations and guild favor. Our mission list keeps getting longer and, while we have been encountering some bugs, we always have a great time! Check our Facebook page/Twitter/forums for daily reminders for all our guild events.
Here’s to a wonderful January as we kick off this new 2016 year! May God bless you all!
Jess
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)

“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11

 


• New Saltines •

vic; GhouldRipper; joeypt; David; IntrepidSpark; Ravensage; guildwarrior; Serri; Tradewinds; Fourdogs; orexionus; Chardman.

Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game!


• January Verse of the Month •

Psalm 19

“The heavens declare the glory of God;
the skies proclaim the work of his hands.
Day after day they pour forth speech;
night after night they display knowledge.
There is no speech or language
where their voice is not heard.
Their voice goes out into all the earth,
their words to the ends of the world.

In the heavens he has pitched a tent for the sun,
which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion,
like a champion rejoicing to run his course.
It rises at one end of the heavens
and makes it circuit to the other;
nothing is hidden from its heat.

The law of the Lord is perfect,
reviving the soul.
The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy,
making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right,
giving joy to the heart.
The commands of the Lord are radiant;
giving light to the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is pure,
enduring forever.
The ordinances of the Lord are sure
and altogether righteous.
They are more precious than gold,
than much pure gold;
they are sweeter than honey,
than honey from its comb.
By them your servant is warned;
in keeping them there is great reward.

Who can discern his errors?
Forgive my hidden faults.
Keep your servant also from willful sins;
may they not rule over me.
Then will I be blameless,
innocent of great transgression.

May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be pleasing in your sight,
O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer.”


• January Song of the month •

The River
By Jordan Feliz


• January Recipe of the month •

Peanut Butter Cups
(Vasshti family favorite!)

In mixing bowl, combine and then pour into a greased 8 x 12 or 9 x 13 pan:
1/3 lb. graham crackers, crushed
2 cubes butter, melted
2 cups powder sugar
1 cup peanut butter

Melt, and then cover peanut butter mixture with:
1 – 2 cups melted chocolate chips

Chill and then cut into squares.


• January Forum Tip of the Month •

Member Profiles

Did you know that you can customize your member profile? Add a profile and cover photo, tell us your in game character names, and even let us know your favorite spot in Tyria! Check it out!

(User tab → Profile → Gear Symbol → Edit Profile)


“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.” Matt. 5:13-16