Monday, December 29, 2008

The days after...

I find myself sitting at our kitchen table today with the sliding door open, letting in the fresh air as it mixes with the warm rays from the sun, a quietness is felt in the cool winter warmth. There are no crickets talking and no birds singing...  the earth is still right now except for the occasional flock of geese flying above.   

The days after Christmas find us recovering from a nasty virus.  I have one little man that is beginning to show signs of life again and a little girl who is just in the midst of it...  
Even in this there is so much to be thankful for...   thankful for our Christmas break and the slower days; thankful for warm chicken soup; thankful for the crisp, warm days that are calling us outside to enjoy the fresh air even in the midst of sickness; thankful for the beauty of His creation...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Celebrating The Season

For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6

Wishing You A Very Merry Christmas From Our Home To Yours!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Wonder of all wonders...

Two years ago we made the trek up to a cabin in the mountains for Christmas.  We were able to spend a week there with my parents, sister and her family.  The days were gentle and quiet... our time was spent together, enjoying a simple Christmas.  It did not snow on Christmas day but the next morning we woke up to see the earth covered in white.  The snow continued on through out the day and my heart fell in love with one of His creations.  It was such a simple act, yet in that moment, with the snow falling fresh, the world seemed to pause and worship to Him began to flow.  There was something so peaceful about the snow falling.

The days are full for my little family... helping Daddy with work projects, preparing for my beloved and two little men to fly out to California for Great-Grandma's memorial service, a Church Christmas service to attend, preparing for Christmas, all that goes along with keeping a home of six running...

It's a cold day and snow has begun to drift down...  blessing us with a white blanket.  As snow floats down, brushing against my face as I walk to get the mail, bringing pure joy to my little ones as they go outside to just stand and enjoy, a song of worship flows from my heart, words of thanks and praise fall off my mouth.  Snow falling...  so simple and yet so profound. 

And then in that moment as it falls, my soul whispers to Him, and He reminds my heart... peace, be still.   

|Be still, and know that I am God
|Psalm 46:10                                    

Yes, Lord, Yes.

Celebrating The Season

little Christmas trees that the boys designed and built with Grandpa

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Labor of the Home

Several years ago when my oldest was still in the toddler stage, a Titus 2 friend gave me a copy of an article she found and loved from a magazine that is no longer in print.  I read it and re-read it over and over again...  it was the soothing balm that my soul needed at that time.  I have kept the copy, shared it with friends, and still enjoy sitting down to read it again.   I thought in light of my last two posts on death and life and vision this would slip in perfectly.

Our labor is lifelong and culture-forming.  It takes place in the smallest moments- taking the time to give the extra word of praise instead of hurrying to the next item on the "to do" list.  It takes place around tables opened to strangers and saints.  It takes place when wives publicly honor their husbands and when children love and obey their parents.  This is the labor that matters most.  
It begins with us.  It begins afresh each day.  May the Lord give us vision to see the long term in the midst of the bustling, busy short term.  May He equip us to build His kingdom with confidence, eve as we watch the kingdoms of men crumble.  Christ has called us to labor with Him.  What a privilege and a joy!  Let us labor together and call all of the work a blessing as day follows day.  This is our birthright, and we must not sell it for the pottage our culture hold out to us.  

Jennie Chancey

It's okay that our home gets a little messy, there is life here.  I am not at home to take care of a list of chores (yes, there is a proper place for lists and actually getting the house clean :) ) but my job goes much farther than that.  We are learning and growing together.   There is needed instruction and encouragement. Relationships need to be build and love needs to be shown. 

Lives are being shaped.  

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  
1 Corinthians 15:58


Monday, December 15, 2008

It's always fun...

... to get creative. :)

Last week Monica posted the instructions for 
making this Names Of Jesus garland.  I loved
the idea and got to work on making one that afternoon.  


Over the last month or so, I have made 
several of these dryer balls and they work!!
 I've made some for us and some for gifts.  
You can find instructions here.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


I know my role. I know what I was designed and created to do but I still need a vision.  I don't want to find myself walking aimlessly down this path.

It's more than dirty dishes. It's more than changing diapers. Our labor is lifelong and culture-forming. It takes place in the smallest moments.
Jennie Chancey

My prayer is to see my little men become mighty men.  Men of God, men of prayer, men of wisdom, fully set-apart, fully yielding yet walking with courage and strength.  Loving the Lord their God with all their heart, soul and mind.   That they would act justly, love mercy and walk humbly with God.   Having the character of Daniel and the heart of David, the faith of Abraham and the boldness of Paul.   

My prayer is to see my little women become the King's daughter.  Women of prayer, of wisdom, fully set-apart, fully yielding and walking with grace.  Having a gentle and quiet spirit, a corner pillar fashioned for a palace, all glorious within.  A creative and confident woman, full of vision, realizing that like Esther she was created for such a time as this.

I want them all to fall in love with learning.  To see them read voraciously and to let their passions take shape.   I desire that they love and value family, finding their best friends within our family unit. Then to see them raise a godly family.  Desiring to serve the orphan and widow and standing before His throne with hearts on fire.

I can't do it on my own though...  I need Him.

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.  
Galations 6:9

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. 
Philippians 3:13,14

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. 
Philippians 4:13

So I press on, lean on His strength, ask for and receive His grace...  

graphic from

Sunday, December 7, 2008

In death... life

It's funny to see how some things can change you to the core...  

There is the gift of salvation as it radically calls you, it can radically bring you out of darkness, and then it radically transforms you...  in death, there is life.  

Motherhood.  It is a role that can rock us to the core, change us, and yet it seems like this is a role that is attacked quite frequently in our American culture.  The message out there can leave us full of questions and frustrated...  What are we to do?  What is our role in the home?  

Being a mommy can be exhausting to say the least.  We spend our best energy on changing diapers,  wiping noses, potty training, reading kids books, making snacks, cleaning messes, only to then have sleepless nights.    

It leaves you little time for yourself.   

But in many ways that is the beauty of it...  it's a dying to self.  

Our American culture (even the Christian culture) so often convinces us that this life is all about us rather than being all about Jesus Christ.
Leslie Ludy

We need to understand that He has called us to do this, then as we lay down our lives and serve Him it is no longer about us and what we deserve. 

No longer is it about us but about Him. No longer is it about what the world says but what He says.

Our role was designed by God Himself...
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.  
Proverbs 22:6
One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts. 
Psalm 145:4
And you shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.  And these words, which I am commanding you today, shall be on your heart;  and you shall teach them diligently to your sons and shall talk of them when you sit in your house and when you walk by the way and when you lie down and when you rise up. And you shall bind them as a sign on your hand and they shall be as frontals on your forehead.  And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.   
Deuteronomy 6:5-9
Older women likewise are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips, nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, that they may encourage the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be sensible, pure, workers at home, kind, being subject to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be dishonored.

Titus 2:3-5

Once we understand what He has called us to do, then we can ask Him to fill us with a vision for our role.  
The mission of motherhood is strategic in providing the next generation with wholehearted, emotionally healthy, and spiritually alive adults. It is not simply a lifestyle choice. It is a divine calling that will indeed affect eternity.
Sally Clarkson

Then when we are exhausted, pushed beyond our limits, tired... we remember why we are doing it...  

"There they dwelt with the King for His work." That's the secret.  They do it for Him.  They ask for and receive His grace to do it.  I saw the joy in their lovely faces." 
Elisabeth Elliot

By His grace, as we surrender and seek to follow Him... we are changed, molded... 

...and we find joy in our role. Complete and full joy. 

In our death there is life.

My quiet thoughts on a  Sabbath afternoon...

Thursday, December 4, 2008

We arrived home yesterday and today finds me unpacking and in a sea of laundry.   Our trip was wonderful but I always love coming home.   We were greeted this morning by some snow and it seems a perfect way to welcome the Christmas season.

Our time in Bakersfield was sweet...

There was time spent saying goodbye to a loved Grandma.


and time spent with cousins... 
laughing, playing, running...   
The kiddos LOVED seeing them.  


 We are thankful that we added a couple of days for a little family vacation.  

Faith was so excited about seeing princesses and wanted 
to wear her own princess dress... Daddy said she could.  :)



Sweet memories were made.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

We are busy getting the house clean, packing our suitcases, making Cd's for the car and putting together the kids activity packs as tomorrow night will find us packing up the car and heading out to California for a week.  We'll be able to spend some time with Brent's family...  it will be a bittersweet time as his Grandma is in her final stages of her journey here on earth... and then we will be able to enjoy some vacation time before heading home.   

Before we left, I wanted to stop in here and wish all of you a
Happy Thanksgiving.  

God has blessed all of us with so much... we have much to be thankful for.  

Friday, November 21, 2008

A day set aside for Thanksgiving

We took the day off from regular schooling today and instead set aside some special time to celebrate Thanksgiving. My Mom and Sister and her three little ones came over and we spent the morning doing Thanksgiving projects and reading books.  

We made little pilgrims.


Created Thankfulness trees... it's always so fun to listen to all that they are thankful for.  :)


We read two books on Thanksgiving.


For a special snack, I found this here, and loved how it incorporated the pilgrims story.   You give them the snack to put into a little bowl or basket while reading how it represents a different part of the Thanksgiving story.  

  1. Chocolate Earth Balls - The pilgrims lived in England where the king made all the laws and the people had to obey them. He told them what church they had to go to and how they had to worship. The pilgrims believed that they should be free to worship God the way they wished. When they heard about the New World in North America, they thought it would be a great place where they could go and live in freedom.
  2. Tiny Twist Pretzels - The pilgrims believed in God and felt that they should be free to worship God the way they wanted to. They should be able to pick their own pastors and make their own laws. The pretzels represent praying hands. The pilgrims prayed for a place they could go to be free to worship God the way they wanted to. They prayed for Gods protection on their trip across the ocean and for God to help them in the new land.
  3. Oyster crackers or other dried bread and jerky - If the weather was bad on the Mayflower, the pilgrims had to eat cold biscuits and salted meat.
  4. Stick Pretzel - The pilgrims cut down trees and used logs to build their homes.
  5. Mini Marshmallows - Reminds us of snow and the first winter in the new land in which only half the pilgrims survived.
  6. Candy corn and gold fish crackers - Squanto showed the pilgrims how to grow corn by placing four seeds into a little mound of earth and placing fish around the seeds.
  7. Life Saver Candies - God helped the pilgrims survive in the new land. He sent Squanto to help the pilgrims and show them how to find food. He was their life saver.
  8. Maple candies - Squanto showed the pilgrims how to tap the maple trees to get their sap.
  9. Teddy Grahams - The pilgrims had to learn to defend themselves against wild animals like bears.
  10. Trix Fruity Flavors or other fruit shapes or dried cranberries - Squanto taught the pilgrims where to find wild berries and fruits and how to dry them for the winter.

I think the morning was a success...

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Not your gifts, nor your grace nor even your glory, could satisfy the desire of a soul which you have made to long for yourself.  You, the Giver of all other precious things, are yourself the choicest, the 'unspeakable' gift!  Lord, into the thirst of my empty heart pour the full stream of your living love! Give me yourself, or I die! 
And having asked, I believe you do give, for your own lips have said it, 'He would have given', and I whisper softly to myself the blessed words, 'Who love ME and gave himself for Me', realizing the sacred, overflowing joy of pardoned sin, and peace with God, filling and satisfying my soul.
So, dear Lord, my spirit, like a weary bird, folds her wings beside this sweet well-spring of comfort, creeps into the blessed 'cleft of the rock', and is at rest.
Sussanah Spurgeon

Friday, November 14, 2008

Belly Laughs

For several reasons we have chosen not to have cable or a TV in our home (we still enjoy a good family movie every now and then, so if you know of one, let me know :) ).  Not sitting in front of the TV every night provides many, many opportunities for belly laughs. 

The other night, Brent was down on the floor playing with all the kiddos before we went to the grocery store...  the calm, quiet playing slowly evolved into Brent becoming a horse for everyone to ride.  The next thing we know, this horse began bucking it's riders off and then standing up on it's hind legs neighing.  

It was quite the sight and it evoked deep, belly laughs from all...

A merry heart doeth good like a medicine. Proverbs 17:22

Monday, November 10, 2008

I once was lost, but now am found

Last night was amazing...  powerful... life changing...

Last weekend our Church did a conference and it was chalk full of teaching.  They were challenging messages, messages that rocked the core of what you believed and made you question it.  Was it dogma or was it from the Bible?  So, this Sunday our Pastor decided not to preach instead we sat and listened to testimony after testimony.  It was not planned and there was no prescript.  The plan had been to just have a night of worship but then our Pastor let those who wanted to share what the Lord had done in their life come up...  

We heard from both men and women who were radically saved from a life of drugs, alcohol, depression...  they weren't saved because they said this sinners prayer and then began a counseling program.   They turned to Him and believed and from that moment forward they were saved.   Not just saved from hell but saved from themselves.   They saw the power of God in their lives.

We heard from people raised in the Church, having said the sinners prayer when they were young and then having been baptized but still having walked in their parents faith.  Some wrestled with God, some were empty, but then there was this message or a song... the point finally came that they believed.  

They knew who God was.  They knew who Jesus was.  But for the first time they believed that He was, that He is. He had died on the cross for them. And at that point they died with Him and were raised again...  they now had a new life.  They believed.

We heard of miracle after miracle taking place.  Sometimes it took place at Church or in their home, sometimes on the side of a rode and some even took place last night...  

Miracle after miracle...  there is a God that is alive and active.    

He is a mighty God! A God who saves. A God who transforms. A God who takes us out of our darkness and brings us into His life.  

Miracles... each and every one.

Friday, November 7, 2008

A quiet Friday afternoon...

The house is quiet and clean right now...  Both of the girls are taking their naps, the boys are over at Grandpa's working on some projects and I'm enjoying some quiet time on the couch with candles beside me and a cup of hot chocolate in my hand.  I've been able to enjoy some time in His presence, seeking Him, asking Him to fill me with His peace - a peace that passes all understanding...  His love - a love that overflows... His joy - joy exceeding... His life - life abundantly...

This is the day which the LORD hath made; We will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24

The week has been full...  last weekend our Church had a conference and an old family friend came to stay with us.  I loved getting our home ready for this young man.  He was to sleep in the boys room so the boys were able to help with preparing it for him... they cleaned their room and bathroom while I washed sheets and towels.    

So between having a visitor, homeschooling, time at Church, a hubby that's been very busy with work, a friend that needs to talk and the joy of seeing our close friends welcome a new little one into their family via adoption...   The days are full and rich.    

I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.  Psalm 34:1

The last week-and-a-half or so I have so enjoyed reading Leslie Ludy's new book Set Apart Femininity and while it is written for those in a different season of life there has been so much that I have been able to glean...  I don't know where to even start...  I think my mind is still trying to wrap itself around all that the Lord is teaching me.  
Why do we stop short of the incredible vision of radiant, set-apart femininity He desires to showcase in and through our lives? Because we don’t truly grasp our utter helplessness; our absolute desperate need for all that He is. We don’t understand that apart from Him, we have nothing, we are nothing, and we can accomplish nothing. We are still looking within ourselves to find beauty and strength that can come only from Him.    

The secret to becoming the radiant, beautiful, alluring, lily-white princess... is forgetting all about self and becoming completely consumer with only one thing - Jesus Christ.

She puts that challenge out there in the first 1/4 of the book and then goes on to show you how to live a radically different life...  one seeped in Him.   Lord help me, I want more of You.
I'm sure I'll be posting more quotes from this book in the coming weeks.  :)

Enjoy your weekend my sweet family and friends...

Thursday, November 6, 2008

God hath not promised
skies always blue,
flower-strewn pathways all our lives through.
God hath not promised
sun without rain,
joy without sorrow,
peace without pain.

But God hath promised
strength for the day,
rest for the laborer,
light on the way.

Grace for the trial,
help from above,
unfailing sympathy,
undying love.

By Helen Steiner Rice.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

The day after

There is so much out there to read on the Internet regarding the election for President, both good and bad but I have to say I enjoyed the following letter the most.

Dear President-Elect Obama,

Today I shed tears of joy, along with hundreds of thousands of Americans, for the great victory of your election. The significance of this moment cannot be overstated. Our African-American friends have been oppressed and cast aside for generations in this country of ours. Now, may the shame be completely wiped away and may the glory that this nation represents and strives for become a reality for more and more of our once silenced citizens.

I confess I did not cast my vote for you. Not because you failed to inspire me with your speeches, because you did. Not because you do not impress me with your leadership and vision, because you do. I cast my vote for another based upon my concern for another segment of our society which is downtrodden and cast aside, the weak, the innocent; the unborn.
You can read the rest here

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Teach Me...

There is no power like that of prevailing prayer - of Abraham pleading for Sodom, Jacob wrestling in the stillness of the night, Moses standing in the breach, Hannah intoxicated with sorrow, David heartbroken with remorse and grief, Jesus in sweat of blood.  Such prayer prevails.  It turns ordinary mortals into men of power.  It brings power.  It brings fire.  It brings rain.  It brings life.  It brings God.  -Samuel Chadwick

O Lord, teach me to pray.  

The joy of being a big sister :)

I was going to do a post today on how my sister probably thinks I've fallen off the face of the earth...  I've been pretty quiet in the computer land this week and then she calls yesterday and somehow I just didn't get to calling her back.   Poor thing, I really was not showing her any love and I thought it would be funny to play with it.  What are big sisters for?  But then I missed her second phone call tonight and I guess I lost my chance because now I needed to call her back quickly or then it would look like I was really avoiding her, right?!?  


Monday, October 27, 2008


Is it okay to be listening to Christmas music a week before NOVEMBER?

I think so...  does the soul good...

Friday, October 24, 2008

Our Autumn Hunt

My Mom found the idea for an Autumn Scavenger Hunt and emailed it to me.  As soon as I read the email I quickly began to plan on adding it to our next nature walk.   Well today was the day, so we grabbed the camera to record some of our findings, had our list and headed out on our walk this afternoon.  We all had so much fun and as we were walking, enjoying the day and our search for different items on the list, my mind was thinking of all the fun additions you could add to the list or different ways to do it.  

Our Autumn Scavenger Hunt 
(adapted a bit from the original list)

Find the following:

* flowers still in bloom - Do you know what they are? If not, look them up later.

* changing leaves - a red leaf, yellow leaf, orange leaf, and one with three colors combined

Sadly, we could not find any orange leaves.

* a seed of some type - Can you identify it?

* a tree with no leaves (or very few) - Why has it lost its' leaves so early?

* an insect - can you identify it?
* an insect home

 As soon as I mentioned that they needed to find an insect 
they quickly knew where they wanted to go...  The red ant hills.

* an autumn sound - What is it?

the sound of the wind moving around us.

* a fruit (berries, for example) - Can you identify?

The boys discovered this abandoned bird nest


We still had the following to find but I think we would need to either venture outside our neighborhood or give ourselves more time (it was already past nap time :) )...
* something living under leaves or a log
* signs of animal activity or presence
* an animal home
(There is so much more that could be added to the list.)


The joy of walks...  being able to gallop like a horse.   :)

That the child should be taken daily, if possible, to scenes—moor or meadow, park, common, or shore—where he may find new things to examine, and so add to his store of real knowledge. That the child’s observation should be directed to flower or boulder, bird or tree; that, in fact, he should be employed in gathering the common information which is the basis of scientific knowledge. - Charlotte Mason

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

How am I known?

How am I known?  What do others see when they look at my life?  

Do they see a woman in love with life?  Someone willing to serve those I love...  laying down my life for Him?  Does joy and love flow from me and touch my husband and children?  Does it reach those I come in contact with daily?   

When little ones run up, do they see a smile on my lips?  Do they see love in my eyes?  Do they know gentleness in my touch? Are words of kindness on my tongue?  

How am I known?

Or do they sadly question? Do they stand in frustration because of me? Do they question what or whom I am serving... do they wonder what I love... do they wonder where my joy is? 

What do they see when they look in my eyes?

How am I known?  What do those I love see when they look at my life?

Can they see Him?  Can they see His love... His life poured out through me for them?  
Do I have a heart of gratitude that radiates from my face, my heart?  Do they know how much I love and appreciate them?

Is my life full of thanksgiving?

Is my life a reflection of Him?
Thou will shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.  Psalm 16:11

Thank you, Father...  You are good.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Yep... just like soda

We were sitting in the living room the other morning reading a story on Benjamin Franklin...  

The story goes to tell how when Benjamin Franklin discovered the electric shock he would have friends come over and then he'd tell them to reach for a crown that was attached to the wire. His friends would grab the crown and quickly yell as they felt an unknown tingle going through their fingers.  

My Benjamin is always asking what words mean when he's not sure about them, so we were quickly stopped in our reading with his inquisitive mind wanting to know what a tingle is.

Well...  it would be like little tickles in your fingers...  or, remember when your foot fell asleep the other night?  It would kind of be like that...

Then John-John pipes up.  Benjamin, it would feel like a soda was in your fingers...

Yep.  Just like a soda.    

I guess?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Autumn Goodness

That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all Thy wondrous works.  Psalm 26:7

A heart full of thanksgiving...

The joy of seeing a little boy's prayers be answered...  a little doggie to play with and to cuddle. Who knew we would have been able to find the perfect fit to his little prayers?  Only a good God.

The joy of seeing a Grandpa lovingly teach his grandsons...  Christmas presents in the making...  what joy there will be on Christmas morning for both the givers and the receivers!

The smell of pumpkin bread coming out of the oven and the joy of watching little ones enjoy it. We had 9 mini loves that are slowly disappearing...  why does it go so fast?  Awww....  the joy of a having a house full of growing little ones and a husband that works so hard.   

Monday, October 13, 2008

A little ball of fur

Well, I guess this will be my first post on our Operation: City Backyard...  doesn't a back yard always need a boy's best friend? This last weekend we added a little puppy to the family.  She is a 12 week old poodle mix and the boys absolutely love her.  

Benjamin is our little animal lover and has been praying every night for just the right doggie. We've been looking, though we were in no rush, and praying for wisdom when the right dog was to come along.  We found her on Saturday thanks to my Mom's help and brought her home that night.  

Lily already loves to play in the back yard with the boys; she loves to cuddle and it will be good for the boys to learn how to train her...  what a perfect start to our Operation: City Backyard.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Fireplace Thoughts

It's a cooler day and I was sitting by the fireplace pondering...


It’s so amazing to see all that is going on…. All that He is doing…. All that He is awakening… There is no other place that I would rather be... and so I sit here wondering what the years ahead will look like for our family. 

I am becoming more and more dissatisfied with the world and the things of the world. We live in glass boxes... does this matter to us? Does this make our heart cry?

My family is my calling… ministering to them, serving them, leading them, instructing them, teaching them, guiding them, blessing them, and loving them.  In teaching them,  I so desire my children to learn to serve others... to not be controlled by the things of the World but to be under the control of the One who spoke the World into existence and it all starts with me.  

I have to ask myself, Will we allow ourselves to be instruments in our Redeemers hands or will we go on in our own way?  Follow our own plans?  Or, will we instead allow Him to receive the reward of His suffering? 

I am excited to see Him at work, to see Him open doors, to see Him provide. Will He take us to the other side of the country to serve the least or will we be serving others from our own little homestead? Will He call us to adopt?  There is so many different ways that we could turn...  but instead we turn to Him.  We look to Him and ask Him to direct our steps and then we abide... because that's where life is... Life Abundantly. 

graphic from Art Posters.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have passed at home in the bosom of my family. Thomas Jefferson

Monday, October 6, 2008

Children's Book Monday

Mud Pies and Other Recipes

Faith and I have been enjoying this book for the last few days. She was given a tea set for her third birthday and this book fuels her love for tea parties right now.  

Silky Spaghetti...  Mud Pies A' La Mud... Rainspout Tea...  these are just some of the recipes you will find in this fun book and it even has a suggested menu section with what to plan for a summer luncheon, a picnic or a wedding feast.  

The pictures are enchanting, the recipes fun and the memories made from enjoying this book with my three-year-old are so sweet.


Go see A Path Made Straight for Children's Book Monday!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Such a challenge

We're having a quiet Sunday here.  My gang is off at Grandpa's working on Christmas presents, Olivia is sleeping, the dishwasher is running in the background which means the kitchen is clean, the windows are open letting in the fresh clean air of fall and it won't be time to get ready to go to Church for another couple of hours....  I'm enjoying the beauty of a sabbath.  

I just finished reading The Shaping Of a Christian Family by Elisabeth Elliot.  I love all of her writings and this one was no different but the last chapter, oh my, that last chapter put forth such a challenge!  In this last chapter, entitled The Family Letters, she shares letters from her parents.  Her mother wrote letters weekly to all of the children...

Jim and Elisabeth Elliot were married twenty-seven months when Jim and four missionary colleagues were killed by Indians in Ecuador.  Elisabeth's mother, upon hearing of the news by shortwave wrote her daughter this letter.  

How I long to take you in my arms and comfort you.  As yet we have no official word as to the outcome.  ...  But through it all God is giving unbelievavle peace, not to ask that the boys be spared, but only that His perfect will may be accomplished and that you dear girls will be so wonderfully conscious of HIS perfect strength and grace that you may be surprised at the peace of heart that He can give.  
Trust... faith...  belief that He is good no matter the trial...

Elisabeth's mother wrote this verse at 3 a.m. while up praying for her children.

The Comfort of the Scriptures to a Mother of Six

I see him, Lord in all that frozen waste,
A gallant figure pushing dauntless on, 
The stinging snow and wind beat in his face -
I need Thy promise, Lord, to lean upon.
For Indian hearts are cold and icy too,
"A heart of flesh for stone, " I hear Thee say?
And also, "He shall let my captives go!"
Now rest, my heart, in this sure Word today.

In streaming jungle, Lord, midst crawling life,
She labors patiently to tell Thy love,
Where naught is known save only strife.
Whence comes my help if not from Thee above?
Arrows by day! Ah Lord, those Auca spears!
Thine angels charge to keep her?  Yes, I know-
But, Lord, terror by night, loneliness and tears-
Yes, Lord, such rivers "shall not overflow."

And on it goes, listing all six of her children. 

Challenging... Inspiring...  Beautiful, A Simply Beautiful picture of a Mother...

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's amazing...

I can't believe it has been two weeks since I posted this post.   We've been enjoying our backyard... the boys have made a fort out of moving boxes, they've been climbing some small trees (which I think gives their Nana a heart attack :) ) and the cooler but sunny days have found us sitting out there doing school or enjoying a picnic lunch.   We also got two bales of hay for our harvest party and who knew that they could be used for so much?  We've made forts, jumping obstacles, more forts, a place to do school, more forts, used the hay to feed our play horses at our play barn, tried to make our own stable and of course made more forts with them.    
My plan was to jump right in on my operation: city backyard... To come up with a plan for our back yard. I've been praying, searching, googling ideas and while I have a couple of thoughts it's been a little challenging to find the time to work on them.  So, we've just been using what we have...  The best way to do it.  :)
I think our first "real" project for our operation: city backyard will be to make a Tee Pee. It is the perfect first project as we are studying American History this year... 

In the meantime, our days have been full...  we've had the Harvest Party, celebrated a birthday and welcomed a new little niece into the family.  We've been working on school in the mornings, enjoying afternoon nature walks and the boys are working on Christmas presents with Grandpa.  Did I mention the 50 lbs of apples?  

These are good days and I would not trade them for anything in the world!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

I'm an Auntie again!

My sister welcomed a new little one into their family.  Delaney Aliana was born early Sunday and we are so thrilled for their family!!  

Congratulations Kim and gang!  We love you!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Saturday Wanderings

We heard that the fall colors were at their peak is Estes Park and made a quick decision to venture up to the park today. We loved seeing the changing colors on the aspen trees, watching the elk look for a mate and being able to listen to their mating call.  The park was insanely busy but we all had a wonderful time. 

wandering off to explore

the changing colors

The elk that was greeting us as we came out of the trees.  Yikes!