February 29, 2008

He Does Love Me...

Of course I'm not doubting my husband's love for me. It's a strong, healthy foundation on which our marriage is built. And I love him dearly as well.

But I do wonder why this morning of all mornings, he brings home......

Wait. You should hear about the rest of the week first. I had been discussing with Michael some challenges I'm facing with one of the children. Nothing huge, but significant enough for me to hide in a closet one day this week taking deep breaths and praying for calmness before I approached the child in question. After two weeks of the stomach bug and almost two weeks of flu-like symptoms, the children are all finally feeling well.....and wild. It's certainly time for Spring.
So I cry on the shoulder of my strongest and best friend, who comforts me with words of encouragement and gives me new perspective. I so appreciate the man that I married. He is my gift from God.

But, why oh why this morning did he bring home whistles? WHISTLES? Each of the cherubs grabbed hold of their treasure as if they'd been handed a huge box of candy and began blowing to their heart's delight.

They were e-c-s-t-a-t-i-c.

I now have a headache.

Nap time and quiet hour never seemed so precious.

I do love the man that I married and it's very good that we have a date planned this evening. I want to tell him about my day {cheesy smile inserted here}. Forgiveness will be granted.

27. everyone recovering from all of the illness bugs
28. ancient words, ever true...reminding me of His promises
29. anticipating an evening shared with my love

February 22, 2008

Organized for What?

So here's part 2 to my thoughts on organization. There are several great informational sites to help you get things uncluttered, in their place and keeping it that way. Some of my favorites in the past years have been FlyLady and Motivated Moms. I use and adjust them to suit our needs. I've also made up my own charts or chore charts for the children as well. I do not have a 100% accuracy rate, but overall I think we have some great systems down. But, that's not what I'm thinking of today.
Right now, I'm pondering the point of my organization. Yes, I believe there are reasons to support the 'why'....and I enjoy the results. However, is my knack for organization and the satisfied feeling of an uncluttered home getting in the way of more imporant things? Such as my attitude toward my husband and children when they leave things undone or not put away? Or what of the command and pursuit towards hospitality?
Creativity is messy. Hospitality is messy. It really is. There is a releasing and letting go in allowing my children to draw, paint, cut, paste, cook, do puzzles, play games, etc. to their heart's content without the constant stream of 'please pick that up' following after them. They will. I've taught them to do this and so I need to trust that they will.
And having their friends over requires an even deeper attitude of letting go. I'm not talking about allowing everyone to run wild and have no respect for our home. But, we often remind our children that 'people are more important than things'. Hmmm....it's a reality check for this Mama. Michael and I have also been talking a lot about opening up our home more in this year and in particular about living out the part in our family mission statement that says 'we will generously share what we have with others'. Did you catch that?
And right on cue, I read this article on hospitality today from a favorite blog. Okay. Gotta do a bit more soul searching here on point #4 in the hospitality habits section. And practicing.


February 20, 2008


This month has been one event after the other and we seem to keep stopping to take notice of special happenings around us. In February:

Groundhog Day (okay, we didn't do much, but it is a PA tradition)
Superbowl--and we're not even football fans!
Super Tuesday
Jordyn's 5th Birthday
Valentine's Day
President's Day
Total Eclipse of the Moon--did you catch it tonight?
100th Day of School
Black History Month
Leap Year
Mom & Dad's Anniversary

And that's not counting the things that we don't really participate in much like Mardi Gras, Chinese New Year, the start of Lent....wow! All of these events make for some fun learning as we discover the who, what, and why behind the celebrations. We kind of need to get back on track with our regular academics {ahem!}.

Organization Tip


That word can bring on groans or cheers depending on personality, style, and the bottom line of whether or not a person is driven to 'find a place for everything and put everything in it's place'. Hmmm....which one are you?

I'm an organizer and always have been. It saves time, its save money and I find more of both to spend elsewhere. There are only so many hours in a day, so there is a point of threshold for each of us. It's defined by our personal circumstances or responsibilities in life as we know it now. I find that though organizing is a part of me, it's ever evolving.

Cultural styles and norms, my own particular style and at times abnormal ways of doing things, consideration for my husband's and children's needs (or lack of need) for organization or structure.....these are all things to consider! So it's a dance, an ebb and flow if you will of what to do about our stuff and where it goes.

I'll pause here. More on this later.

But oh, yes! My tip on the topic. It's been a huge time saver to find this place for organizing and keeping up with the blogs or sites I would like to read. I really like it! I have serious concerns about spending too much time on the computer and so then time away from my family. Bloglines is wonderful for that; it's allowed me to read more on the web in less time::set up a free account, subscribe to blogs or sites, and they do the work of letting you know when each is updated....super easy. Try it out!

February 15, 2008


22. red roses adorning my dining room table::he was thinking of me too

22. the sound of birds singing and the sight of them enjoying the snacks we made

23. a new musical artist to enjoy::click here to listen; Castle Hunting is the favorite

24. fresh sheet music to play through::did I mention that I like the song Castle Hunting?

25. listening to my eldest daughter's excitement about a date out with Dad...tonight

26. anticipating the return of my spouse. also this evening, but earlier

enjoy each moment of the weekend...

February 14, 2008

Valentines for Others

Last week our church homeschool group got together to make valentines and enjoy a little party. Instead of thinking of those in our family or close friends, we took on the project of assembling cards for the residents in a local nursing home. With a list of names in hand, the children were able to address the cards specifically to a person in the home. We also included scripture verses that had a reminder of God's love. Today was the scheduled date of delivery, but too many of us were sick! The cards were dropped off and then distributed, unfortunately not by us though. Another time!


Valentines for My Loves

Happy Valentine's to each of you!

Because our anniversary is also in February, Valentine's Day is mainly spent treating the children to something a little extra and celebrating as a family. This year I decided to make the kids some whimsical and fun homemade gifts.

Umm, I decided this on Tuesday evening. After a scheduled Bible study was cancelled due to weather concerns. {go ahead, you can laugh}

Anyway, some cookies for everyone were the first item on the agenda. A new recipe tried that I'll post later: Chai Shortbread, oh so absolutely yummy. Josiah received animal crackers due to his allergy.

Since they all enjoy writing, drawing, and/or coloring, this was the theme. Jackie received six lovely white on white notecards. The flower border is a Martha Stewart punch from Michael's. I really like her stuff!

For Josiah and Janelle, I machine sewed some books together for them. It's simply heavy cardstock with printer paper on the inside. I sew them as not to risk staple cuts...we've had too many of those in the past. Josiah's got decorated with stickers and Janelle's nickname stamped on her two.

For Jordyn, I also made six small notecards. Circle punched an opening and then stamped the 'J' on the inside. Hers will probably be used up by tonight as she wastes no time in preserving things for the future.

Quick, simple projects that were easy to make.
And what of my dear spouse? the love of my life? Well, he is out of town. Our plans are postponed until the weekend. But, I am thinking of him....


February 13, 2008


My kiddos are in for a sweet surprise! What could these wraps hold?
Wait for Valentine's Day...


February 11, 2008


wedding album, ring pillow and flower basket atop our piano



Another birthday in our household~~Jordyn is FIVE! Since her favorite color is pink and she likes cakes and sweets (much to Mama's dismay), we decided to focus the theme on the book Pinkalicious. A sweet story of a girl who eats too many pink cupcakes and finally figures out the remedy to turning herself pink. See the website for pink party ideas!

We got away with another 'family only' party, most likely the last one. Jordyn had fun making cupcakes with Nana, shopping for a new bicycle with Mimi and Popi, playing with siblings and her cousin, and enjoying the pink festivities, especially the cupcakes! Happy Birthday little girl!


February 7, 2008


18. knowing that I'm cared for~in numerous ways
19. one-on-one time spent with my son, learning more about him
20. a night-out with friends coming up this weekend!
21. time spent hearing His voice, just listening instead of doing the talking

I'm spending some time today preparing to lead discussions and teaching at church next week on encouraging mothers and also one on prayer. Two separate topics, but aren't they intertwined?

Yes, I'm learning that this is where I find the most encouragment. I dearly appreciate the circles of 'mother friends' that surround me, and I grow so much from interactions with them. Yet, in the quiet times it's Him that I need. God to sustain me in the journey, to encourage me and lift weariness at times, to give me eternal perspective. And He does.

I'm so grateful.

February 6, 2008

Mommy and Me Class

So I've guess you've heard about how I, King Josiah, am getting a little more spunky! I thought that's what I was supposed to be doing? Hmmm....anyway, Mommy and I went to a class for 2 and 3 year olds at our local children's museum. This one was all about colors and I had a very good time.

Here are some pictures:
we used the colorful fruity cheerios and a red licorice strand to make necklaces; I ate mine before we got home.

dropping & mixing blue, red and yellow water to make new colors!

mixing again with foam paint

playing with rainbow rice


February 5, 2008


Yard sales are on my mind today.

Not the most noble thing to be wondering about, I know. While going about morning activities (which are less today because it's only me and one child), I'm finding myself getting excited about the yard sale season. It doesn't even officially begin around here for another few months, but I'm thinking on it.

I enjoy thrift stores, yard saling (is that a word!?) and consignment stores. I always have and not sure where the trait has been inherited since my Mother did not and still does not enjoy those places. Well, she doesn't like shopping in general. As a child and teenager I went along to the grocery store and it was me who brought the clipped coupons to use! Fun memories that my mother and I still laugh about today. "Wait Mom! This one is much cheaper and I have a coupon!"

Anyway, I think for me it's the thrill of beating the system....is that odd? Of finding a gem in the middle of nowhere for next to nothing. Of not paying full price and squirreling away the extra $$ for other pleasures. My husband says that I will get up at the crack of dawn on a Saturday morning for two things only: an eBay auction or a yard sale.

He's exaggerating of course.

Well....maybe not really. The only other thing I can think of is when a baby needed to be nursed; and I did that half asleep.

So, no yard sales yet, but our local library has a bin available where patrons can drop off magazines they are finished with and others can pick them up for no cost. I was thrilled to find these goodies this weekend! Very recent copies of Southern Living and Cooking Light were poured over and new recipes tried because of course I couldn't wait. Our favorite was Pork Medallions with Apricot Sauce; very simple and I had the ingrediants available. Yummy.

And I didn't even have to get up early....


He's Two.

Josiah is officially two and the powerful will and mindset that often comes with that age is starting to show. By the way, he moved the chair over, climbed up and opened the freezer all by himself! He said he needed some bread.
In the last 2 weeks his thoughts towards things have changed as well:
"I don't like bananas anymore!" This basically has applied to any fruit or veggie he was happily eating in the past year. We now call him the Carbs King. Thus, the need to look for bread?
He still does remain a sweetheart though.....loving to cuddle up with Mama on the couch. The rest of him just has to be taken in stride!


February 1, 2008

Corners of My Home

gratitude for:
17. ummm, pillow talk with my sweetheart

have a wonderful weekend....

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