A good day!

A good day!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Dying to self...

When you are forgotten, or neglected, or purposely set at naught, and you don't sting and hurt with the insult or the oversight, but your heart is happy, being counted worthy to suffer for Christ.


When your good is evil spoken of, when your wishes are crossed, your advice disregarded, your opinions ridiculed, and you refuse to let anger rise in your heart, or even defend yourself, but take it all in patient, loving silence.


When you lovingly and patiently bear any disorder, any irregularity, any unpunctuality, or any annoyance; when you stand face-to-face with waste, folly, extravagance, spiritual insensibility-and endure it as Jesus endured.


When you are content with any food, any offering, any climate, any society, any raiment, any interruption by the will of God.


When you never care to refer to yourself in conversation, or to record your own good works, or itch after commendations, when you can truly love to be unknown.


When you can see your brother prosper and have his needs met and can honestly rejoice with him in spirit and feel no envy, nor question God, while your own needs are far greater and in desperate circumstances.


When you can receive correction and reproof from one of less stature than yourself and can humbly submit inwardly as well as outwardly, finding no rebellion or resentment rising up within your heart.


Are you dead yet?

In these last days, the Spirit would bring us to the cross.

~Author Unknown~

Herb talk---Elderberry

 This is one of my favorite herbs :)

Used for its antioxidant activity, to lower cholesterol, improve vision, boost the immune system, improve heart health and for coughs, colds, flu, bacterial and viral infections and tonsilitis. Elderberry juice was used to treat a flu epidemic in Panama in 1995.

Elderberries have been a folk remedy for centuries in North America, Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa, hence the medicinal benefits of elderberries are being investigated and rediscovered. Elderberry is used for its antioxidant activity, to lower cholesterol, to improve vision, to boost the immune system, to improve heart health and for coughs, colds, flu, bacterial and viral infections and tonsilitis. Bioflavonoids and other proteins in the juice destroy the ability of cold and flu viruses to infect a cell. People with the flu who took elderberry juice reported less severe symptoms and felt better much faster than those who did not.

Elderberries contain organic pigments, tannin, amino acids, carotenoids, flavonoids, sugar, rutin, viburnic acid, vitaman A and B and a large amount of vitamin C. They are also mildly laxative, a diuretic, and diaphoretic. Flavonoids, including quercetin, are believed to account for the therapeutic actions of the elderberry flowers and berries.

Elderberries were listed in the CRC Handbook of Medicinal Herbs as early as 1985, and are listed in the 2000 Mosby's Nursing Drug reference for colds, flu, yeast infections, nasal and chest congestion, and hay fever. In Israel, Hasassah's Oncology Lab has determined that elderberry stimulates the body's immune system and they are treating cancer and AIDS patients with it. The wide range of medical benefits (from flu and colds to debilitating asthma, diabetes, and weight loss) is probably due to the enhancement of each individual's immune system.

At the Bundesforschungsanstalt research center for food in Karlsruhe, Germany, scientists conducting studies on Elderberry showed that elderberry anthocyanins enhance immune function by boosting the production of cytokines. These unique proteins act as messengers in the immune system to help regulate immune response, thus helping to defend the body against disease. Further research indicated that anthocyanins found in elderberries possess appreciably more antioxidant capacity than either vitamin E or vitamin C.

Monday, November 29, 2010

What a weekend!

Our friend invited us to spend Thanksgiving with her family.  So we loaded up the vehicle and her, her husband, Ryan, Hunter, and I and set off for Ohio.  We played road games like I spy and talked and had a good time on the way over.  We arrived about 7 hours later and were glad to get something to eat and sit down. :)

Her family was very kind to us and we felt very comfortable there.  It was great spending Thanksgiving with a lot of people.  The food was FANTASTIC!  We played cards, went to Wheeling to go to Cabela's, and just relaxed.  It was a great time for our family.  I loved seeing how their relationships worked.  They were all very close.  You could feel the love they had for each other.  It was great to be around. :)  I hope all of you had a great Thanksgiving. 

Now that we are home, we have a ton of stuff to do in the next two weeks.  We are leaving for our cruise on the 10th of December and I need to get this house in order, get packed, etc.  It's going to get here before we know it.

This Thanksgiving made me realize just how important family is.  Relationships with people need to be nurtured, grown, and held onto.  Being loved and knowing you are loved is so important.  I got to be a witness to such a thing this weekend.  My friend is truly blessed with the love of a father and mother, aunts, uncles, and cousins.  Some things we can take for granted when that love is not as evident in our own life.  I am thankful for the love of my husband and son and friends who are like family. :)  I wasn't meant to share in the same kind of blessing as my friend.  I don't have the same kind of love of a father and mother.  But, that's just what God saw fit for me to have and I need to be content with my lot and not compare it to others.  He has blessed me with being able to share as much love as I can to others.  Everyone needs to know they are loved. :)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I thank the Lord He made you...

I love Johnny Cash and I really like this song for Thanksgiving. I am thankful for so many things. I thank the Lord He made my husband, my son, friends, family, my church family, people who have stepped up and became a mentor to me, and yes I am thankful He made Johnny Cash :). I have been truly blessed. This Thanksgiving I want to focus on thankfulness and not sadness. I want to focus on contentment. It is such a strong, wonderful characteristic to have. One that I desire to achieve.

I pray everyone has a good Thanksgiving. Remember your loved ones that are not sitting around the table with you. They are there in your heart...

Monday, November 22, 2010

Are you flinching?

The tests of life are to make us, not break us.  Trouble may demolish a man's business, but build up his character.  The blow at the outward man may be the greatest blessing to the inner man.  If God, then, puts or permits anything hard to our lives, be sure that the real peril, the real trouble, is what we shall lose if we flinch or rebel. ~ Maltbie Babcock

Herb talk---Turmeric

I am studying to become an herbalist.  Here in my state there is no licensing, only certification, but you don't have to be certified either and can be self-educated.  I have been studying herbs for a long time, but I decided I wanted to really get into it.  Of course, I won't be working outside the home.  I just wanted some more knowledge and to be able to help friends. So every once in a while I will post something about an herb.  Today is Turmeric.  I really like this herb.  It does so many great things...

Turmeric is one of nature's most powerful healers. The active ingredient in turmeric is curcumin. Turmeric has been used for over 2500 years in India, where it was most likely first used as a dye. The medicinal properties of this spice have been slowly revealing themselves over the centuries. Long known for its anti-inflammatory properties, recent research has revealed that turmeric is a natural wonder, proving beneficial in the treatment of many different health conditions from cancer to Alzheimer's disease.
Here are 20 reasons to add turmeric to your diet:

1. It is a natural antiseptic and antibacterial agent, useful in disinfecting cuts and burns.
2. When combined with cauliflower, it has shown to prevent prostate cancer and stop the growth of existing prostate cancer.
3. Prevented breast cancer from spreading to the lungs in mice.
4. May prevent melanoma and cause existing melanoma cells to commit suicide.
5. Reduces the risk of childhood leukemia.
6. Is a natural liver detoxifyer.
7. May prevent and slow the progression of Alzheimer's disease by removing amyloyd plaque buildup in the brain.
8. May prevent metastases from occurring in many different forms of cancer.
9. It is a potent natural anti-inflammatory that works as well as many anti-inflammatory drugs but without the side effects.
10. Has shown promise in slowing the progression of multiple sclerosis in mice.
11. Is a natural painkiller and cox-2 inhibitor.
12. May aid in fat metabolism and help in weight management.
13. Has long been used in Chinese medicine as a treatment for depression.
14. Because of its anti-inflammatory properties, it is a natural treatment for arthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.
15. Boosts the effects of chemo drug paclitaxel and reduces its side effects.
16. Promising studies are underway on the effects of turmeric on pancreatic cancer.
17. Studies are ongoing in the positive effects of turmeric on multiple myeloma.
18. Has been shown to stop the growth of new blood vessels in tumors.
19. Speeds up wound healing and assists in remodeling of damaged skin.
20. May help in the treatment of psoriasis and other inflammatory skin conditions.
Turmeric can be taken in powder or pill form. It is available in pill form in most health food stores, usually in 250-500mg capsules.

Contraindications: Turmeric should not be used by people with gallstones or bile obstruction. Though turmeric is often used by pregnant women, it is important to consult with a doctor before doing so as turmeric can be a uterine stimulant.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Prescription for Contentment...

This comes from the book, "Calm My Anxious Heart" by Linda Willow

-Never allow yourself to complain about anything-not even the weather.
-Never picture yourself in any other circumstances or someplace else.
-Never compare your lot with another's.
-Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise.
-Never dwell on tomorrow-remember that tomorrow is God's, not ours.
I have been working a lot on contentment.  I have done previous posts on not realizing just how discontent I was.  It's a sneaky thing that worms it's way into my life....many times.  It is something that I have to constantly give over to Christ.  I am hoping that it will become easier as time goes on.  The list above is a good start to help me keep it in check.  I have failed at each one of these points...sadly. I know I am one to complain about the weather...especially when it's cold and yucky.  I picture myself other places a lot...like in the mountains. I compare my lot with others, I sometimes wish things turned out different with some things in my life like with my "dad", and I recently did a post on dwelling on the past and thinking/worrying about tomorrow.

In my search for "helps" in this area, I came across this book.  I intend to borrow it from the library.  The one thing I don't want to do is just read it and get knowledge.  I'm really good at that.  Where I tend to lack is the application.  I have the desire to apply, it's just getting practical about it.  That's why I like these 5 points.  I can work with those and I will grow miles in the area of contentment with God's grace. :) I so very much want to be content...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Are we in the 30's?

I don't know about you, but the prices of food going up has really affected my bill.  I am thankful for the harvest I was able to put up this summer, but it wasn't a tremendous amount.  I am so glad canning and preserving the harvest is a passion of mine.  One that I've had since I was a little girl. A passion I think every wife should have. :)

Sometimes I feel like we are living back in the dirty 30's when the depression was in full force.  I know "they" say we are not in a depression, but it sure feels like it at the grocery store.  All the good for you foods have jumped up in price.  It stings a little this time of year when my husband is laid off for the winter.  He won't go back until mid March or so.  So what's a girl to do?

We try to be good stewards of our money.  I am pretty frugal and I don't squander my husband's hard earned money.  I am very thorough at the grocery store and make sure I get the best price for each item purchased.  We also shop at thrift shops for clothes when we can.  There are times when they simply don't have the right size we need.  I make a menu out for the entire month and just buy ingredients for those meals.  Of course, we do buy milk (we have no cow), some meat, and fruit.  We butcher our own deer and make summer sausage, breakfast sausage, brats, jerky, etc.  That helps a lot.  I have some chickens that are going to be ready for butchering come next fall...they are about done laying.  I still have some that are laying and we'll keep them around a while longer. ;)  Heating our house with a woodstove is a blessing.  It feels so wonderful in the winters and cuts our electric bill down drastically.  We work as a family to gather the wood and stack it. We also make our Christmas gifts, not only to save money, but it's a passion of mine to make things from scratch and give things that my hands have made. :)

What are some ways you are cushioning the blow in these rough economic times?

A must try roast!

We had this last night and it was wonderful!

Mushroom and Blueberry Balsamic Roast
  • 1 whole 3 -4 Pound Chuck Roast
  • olive oil and butter
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • 2 whole Onions, Quartered
  • 1-½ cup Baby Carrots
  • 1 cup Baby Portobello Mushrooms, Sliced Thick
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Thinly Sliced
  • ½ cups Balsamic Vinegar
  • ½ cups Beef Broth
  • ¼ cups Tomato Sauce
  • 2 cups Fresh Blueberries

Drizzle 2 Tablespoons of olive oil over chuck roast and generously salt and pepper.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Then add 2 tablespoons of olive oil and a tablespoon of butter.
Cut two onions in quarters and cut 6 carrots into 2-inch slices (you can peel them, but you don’t have to). When the oil in the pot is very hot (but not smoking), add in the onions, browning them on one side and then the other. Remove the onions to a plate. Add the carrots into the same pot and toss them around a bit until slightly browned, about a minute or so. Add a little more olive oil if necessary and add mushrooms and sliced garlic. Stir everything until the mushrooms just begin to brown, then remove to a plate.
If needed, add a bit more olive oil to the pot. Place the meat in the pan and sear it for about a minute on all sides until evenly browned. Remove the roast to a plate.

With the burner still on high, add balsamic vinegar and beef broth to deglaze the pan, scraping the bottom with a whisk to get all the brown bits up. Add tomato sauce and blueberries. Bring to a boil and lower the heat to a simmer. Allow the berries to cook for about 3 – 4 minutes until they plump, then using the back of your spoon mash some of the berries.
Place the roast in crockpot and pour sauce over top.  Cook 4 hours on high.  This was the very best roast we've ever had (aside from the roast we made on the woodstove)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

What kind of wife are you?

    10An excellent wife, who can find?
         For her worth is far above rubies.
    11The heart of her husband trusts in her,
         And he will have no lack of gain.
    12She does him good and not evil
         All the days of her life.
    13She looks for wool and flax
         And works with her hands in delight.
    14She is like merchant ships;
         She brings her food from afar.
    15She rises also while it is still night
         And gives food to her household
         And portions to her maidens.
    16She considers a field and buys it;
         From her earnings she plants a vineyard.
    17She girds herself with strength
         And makes her arms strong.
    18She senses that her gain is good;
         Her lamp does not go out at night.
    19She stretches out her hands to the distaff,
         And her hands grasp the spindle.
    20She extends her hand to the poor,
         And she stretches out her hands to the needy.
    21She is not afraid of the snow for her household,
         For all her household are clothed with scarlet.
    22She makes coverings for herself;
         Her clothing is fine linen and purple.
    23Her husband is known in the gates,
         When he sits among the elders of the land.
    24She makes linen garments and sells them,
         And supplies belts to the tradesmen.
    25Strength and dignity are her clothing,
         And she smiles at the future.
    26She opens her mouth in wisdom,
         And the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
    27She looks well to the ways of her household,
         And does not eat the bread of idleness.
    28Her children rise up and bless her;
         Her husband also, and he praises her, saying:
    29"Many daughters have done nobly,
         But you excel them all."
    30Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain,
         But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.
    31Give her the product of her hands,
         And let her works praise her in the gates.  Proverbs 31:10-31

What kind of a woman does our society honor?

She would work at a job, build her own career, demand and get equal pay with men. She would refuse to submit to her husband, demanding equality with him in everything. She would not want her husband or children to threaten her personal goals. She would have her own bank account. She would hire a maid or cleaning service. She would eat out at least 50 percent of the time with her family or without. She would make cold cereal and coffee the standard breakfast fare for the family and quick-frozen meals usual dinner fare, and she would certainly expect her husband to do half the housework.  She is miles away from the woman in Proverbs 31. Is this the kind of wife God wants us to be?

Earlier on in the book of Proverbs young men are warned against the wrong kind of woman, the adulteress who flatters with her lips, the adulteress who forsakes her own husband, breaks covenant and entertains a union with someone else, the adulteress whose lips drip honey but who brings about death and destruction, the smooth-tongued adulteress who hunts for the precious life to make him her prey. Proverbs warns against the noisy woman, the quarrelsome woman, the rebellious woman, the foolish woman. And the sons of Israel were to be warned to stay away from and avoid all such women.

But, in Proverbs 31 it talks about "The excellent wife"  Her character as a wife, her devotion as a homemaker, her generosity as a neighbor, her influence as a teacher, her effectiveness as a mother and her excellence as a person...the sum of all of that makes the excellent wife.  She loves her husband and children, feeds her family, brings honor to her husband, she is frugal, selfless, wise, giving, a good homemaker, and she is not lazy.  Her husband trusts in her as she does no harm to him all the days of her life.  Does your husband praise you?

What are you trying to accomplish as a wife?  What kind of wife are you?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

New Every Morning...

Yea, "new every morning," though we may awake,
Our hearts with old sorrow beginning to ache;
With old work unfinished when night stayed our hand,
With new duties waiting, unknown and unplanned;

With old care still pressing, to fret and to vex,
With new problems rising, ours minds to perplex;
In ways long familiar, in paths yet untrod,
Oh, new every morning the mercies of God!

His faithfulness fails not; it meets each new day
With guidance for every new step of the way;
New grace for new trials, new trust for old fears,
New patience for bearing the wrongs of the years,

New strength for new burdens, new courage for old,
New faith for whatever the day may unfold;
As fresh for each need as the dew on the sod;
Oh, new every morning the mercies of God!
By Annie Johnson Flint

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Early nights...

The sun going down early is really messing with me.  I'm usually up with the sun, but the sun doesn't come up fast enough and then goes away too soon.  I always feel like going to bed after supper.  When we used oil lamps in the evenings, we would always end up in bed early.  Sure, we would play a game or something, but we would always be tired because of the dim light.  Then we would be up with the sun to make the most of our day.  These kind of nights make for good cozy time in the living room with the woodstove.

Hunter did his sound effects for a "movie" last night at the library.  He did a good job. :)  He was one of the youngest ones in there and the rest of the students were college age. He is interested in technology things and picks it up so fast.  I'm really proud of him...God has really blessed me.

He's been doing a great job with the new homeschooling approach.  I know I've said it before, but it's true.  He's such a good reader and has a high comprehension level.  In second grade he was reading sixth grade level. He is now a seventh grader and his reading level is adult.

I pray everyone enjoys their evening. Be blessed...

Monday, November 15, 2010

Hope and our desires...

"Oh, that I might have my request, that God would grant what I hope for." Job 6:8

What do you hope for?  Is it more money? Happier marriage? To see someone you haven't seen in a long time? To be a better Christian?  To experience more of God's love through His people?  To become more like Christ?  To be loved?

Are the things in which we hope for and request from God also His desires? What are our motives?  Is it to glorify God by doing things He commands us in His word? Or do we have selfish motives?  I would have to say that I've been on both ends of this spectrum at sometime or another.  There are many things I hope for. I believe most of what I hope for is His desire, also.  I'm sure there are things I hope for that may not be in His plan.  One thing I can think of is my trip to Montana next year.  I hoped for it and it's not meant to be this time around.  We have some debt to pay down before we go.  I want to pay cash for the trip and we won't be able to by this summer.  So I hoped for it and desired it, but God had different plans for me.  I do believe He will allow me to see it before if/when my eyes fail me.  It just won't be as soon as I wanted to. But, I can carry Montana in my pocket until the day I get to lay eyes on it for real.

I want my hopes and desires to be the same as that of my Lord.  If you stop and listen closely, you will hear His still small voice.  He will let you know clearly if your desires are the same as His.  If they're not, He will let you know.  You will know deep down in the corners of your heart if it is His desire or not...

Leave tomorrow alone...

I went into the church today to volunteer. It's nice getting back out after my surgery. This week was my second time back and it was better than last week.  Last week I was really weak. 

The house is warm today from the morning fire in the woodstove.  I am so thankful for our free heat. :)  It just makes me feel so much better when I'm not freezin'.

Hunter has been going to the library on Mon evenings to take part in a film.  He is doing sound effects and tonight they are doing the movie.  I hope to get some pics. :) 

Our pastor talked about living for the day yesterday.  I thought it interesting because that is something I've been talking about and struggling with.  He said, "Leave tomorrow alone"  That's hard to do.  But, I know in order for me to live for today and live in the moment, I need to.  It is very hard to be strong sometimes.  To stand up strong and face the enemy with shoulders back and head held high, when all the while I just want to crumble, is very difficult.  But, when I do it, it is only because I allowed God to give me the strength for the day instead of relying on myself.  It can be difficult to not dwell on the past or think about the future.  I feel like that is what my mind automatically does.  It rarely stays in the present.  I must work harder on that...

Not yesterday's load we are called on to bear, Nor the morrow's uncertain and shadowy care; Why should we look forward or back with dismay? Our needs, as our mercies, are but for the day. ~Annie Johnson Flint

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Faithful is He Who Hath Promised...

Are you passing through a testing?
Is your pillow wet with tears?
Do you wonder what the reason,
Why it seems God never hears?
Why it is you have no answer
To your oft, repeated plea,
Why the heaven still is leaden
As you wait on bended knee?

Do you wonder as you suffer,
Whether God does understand,
And if so, why He ignores you,
Fails to hold you in His Hand?
Do black doubts creep in, assail you,
Fears without--and fears within,
Till your brave heart almost falters
And gives way to deadly sin?

All God's testings have a purpose,
Someday you will see the light.
All He asks is that you trust Him,
Walk by faith and not by sight.
Do not fear when doubts beset you,
Just remember - He is near;
He will never, never leave you,
He will always, always hear.

Faithful is He who has promised,
He will never let you fall,
Daily will the strength be given
Strength for each and strength for all.
He will gladly share pain with you,
He will gladly give you peace.
Till your tired and weary body
Finds its blessed, glad release.

When the darkened veil is lifted,
Then, dear heart, you'll understand
Why it is you had to suffer,
Why you could not feel His hand
Giving strength when it was needed,
Giving power and peace within
Giving joy thru tears and trial,
Giving victory over sin.
So till then just keep on trusting,
Thru the sunshine and the rain.
~Annie Johnson Flint~

I found comfort in this poem.  I hope you do, too....

Saturday, November 13, 2010

It's that time of year...

My husband was laid off yesterday for the winter....earlier than normal.  Work has been a bit scarce these last few weeks.  It will be nice to have him home. The weather here today is rainy and cooler.  I kinda like it today.  It helps me rest. :)  On days like this I like to stay home and bake.  I'm going to be baking these today.  They sounded good to me. :)


Thinking about trials the last couple days...Today in my devotional was this...
"God knows that you can stand that trial; He would not give it to you if you could not.  It is His trust in you that explains the trials of life, however bitter they may be.  God knows our strength, and He measures it to the last inch; and a trial was never given to any man that was greater than that man's strength, through God, to bear it." Streams in the Desert.

It helps to know that God knows I can stand the trials He presents in my life, or He wouldn't give them to me.  This is something I remind myself everyday...

I've been thinking ahead to Christmas and wondering what I am going to give as gifts.  I haven't started making my soap yet as I have some supplies I still need to get.  I'm hoping to get them so I can make some soap as gifts.  I'll be making candy again this year and that is always fun to do, although it usually takes a lot out of me.  I am looking forward to making our home cozy this winter and listening to Christmas music.  I really like Johnny Cash's Christmas music, Nat King Cole, Perry Como, Burl Ives, etc.  I sure wish I could share it with everyone I love...

I pray everyone enjoys their weekend.  I'm going to rest some more as I have been healing well and I want to continue to.  If I don't rest on purpose, I will overdo it and take steps back in my recovery, which I sure don't want to do. :)  Give your family a hug and kiss and let them know just how much you love them by showing them...

Friday, November 12, 2010

Don'ts for Wives 1913

I got this book in the mail the other day...it's teeny tiny in size, but big on old fashioned wisdom...

Here are some of the "don'ts" for wives...

Don't forget the feed the brute well.  Much depends on the state of his digestion.
Don't let him have to search the house for you.  Listen for him at the door and meet him on the threshold.
Don't think your husband horrid if he seems a bit irritable; he probably had a very tiring day and his nerves are overwrought.
Don't keep the house so tidy that your husband is afraid to leave a newspaper lying about.
Don't get angry when your husband says your cake doesn't taste like his mother's; write and ask her for the recipe.
Don't say "I told you so" to your husband no matter how much you feel tempted to.
Don't return to an old grievance. Once the matter has been thrashed out, let it be forgotten, or at least never allude to it again.

I thought this book was interesting in it's advice to wives. It is not mainstream thinking.  The world/society wants us to only think of ourselves and to put us first.  God wants us to put others first and most importantly, our husbands.  They come first after the Lord, then our children.  I find these books refreshing in the advice and it helps me to not think of myself first, but to make sure my husband is taken care of and loved. :)

We have a winner!

Congratulations Troop Petrie! You WON! I used Random.org to get our winner.  Send me your address and phone number to ecclesiastes1_2@yahoo.com and General Mills and Live Gluten Freely will get your package out to you! :)  I hope you enjoy the products.  I think you'll be surprised at how good gluten free can taste. :)

trooppetrie said...
I am new to the gluten free lifestyle, have not totally gone there but researching and trying to make small changes, I am thrilled that you showed things that I had never thought about.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Happy Veterans Day!

Thank you for all you do and continue to do!  Here are couple songs appropriate for the day from my favorite singer. :)


Wednesday, November 10, 2010

What beautiful days...

I can hardly believe it's November! This week has been in the 70's and I am just LOVING it! :)  Next week looks cold though, but it is November after all. :)  The captain will probably be laid off the end of this week for the winter.  A lot sooner than usual.  Usually he is laid off in December sometime.  It may be a long winter. ;)

I have to go see the doc today about the blood clot in my arm to make sure there isn't anything else I should be doing and to see when on earth it will get better.  It is painful.

I am thankful for a God who takes care of us.  He doesn't always heal our physical pain.  But, He gives comfort to us while we are hurting.  He can mend our emotional pain using others to give us a word of encouragement.  I know the holidays are coming around and that can be hard for some people, and yes for me.  There are people you want to speak to or hear from that you just can't for whatever reason.  For those times, hopefully we have made it clear our love for them. We take a piece of everyone who has influenced our lives and carry it with us the rest of our lives.  What sort of piece are you leaving for someone to carry with them?  I pray I am leaving loving, godly pieces with the ones I love...

*update* The blood clot in my arm may take another 4 weeks to get better, but I am doing everything I am supposed to with it.  Just have to be patient. ;)

Raising sons: Shaping their masculine identity...

This post comes from "The Male Domain" which is from the husband of the blogger "A Wise Woman Builds Her Home."  Since I am raising a son and thought some of you may be also, I wanted to share this gem. :) *Also don't forget to enter my gluten free giveaway! I will be drawing a winner on Friday!*

In his book, Future Men, Douglas Wilson says, "Manhood is where boyhood should be aimed." With this in mind, I'd like to start my series about Raising Sons with a look at shaping our sons masculine identity.

Our boys should be brought up with a different mindset than our daughters; they should see themselves as soldiers for Jesus Christ, ready to fight the Lord's battles when needed, and ready to give their lives for the kingdom if called to do so. This won't happen by chance. If you let culture raise your boys, and you're hoping for good results, you might be waiting a loooong time. For a boy to grow up seeing himself as a Godly, masculine, soldier for the Lord, he's going to need help - he's going to need training.

In Future Men, Wilson talks about five aspects of masculinity that we should cultivate in our sons to help them fulfill their God-given role in the kingdom. They are; lord, husbandmen, savior, sage, and glory-bearer.

Lord: Men were created to rule and have dominion over the earth. They were to reign over all the living creatures, populate the earth, and cultivate the land. Many theologians call this the creation mandate, and look to Gen. 1:26-28 as their biblical authority. Our sons must be taught this creation mandate so they won't fall prey to the feminized culture that exists in our world today, and believe that men and women are no different from one another, children are an option in marriage, and women should look outside of the home for their real happiness and identity.

Husbandmen: Men are to be cultivators of what's around them, not just consumers of what exists. They are to learn how to reproduce, so that when one thing is consumed, another is being planted. Men build gardens and families, not just bridges and buildings. Let your boys play in your garden; teach them the cycles of life, and tell them how that reflects the nature of God.

Savior: There's only One True Savior, and that is, of course, Jesus Christ: but men were created to save things as well, and God placed within us a deep seeded desire to act in saving fashion for many things in this world. When a boys sees a villain in a movie, it's only natural for that boy to want to kill or defeat them. When he see's a dragon, or hears about the Great Dragon in Revelation, it's only natural for boys to want to kill or defeat it as well. They've been given a desire to save that which is less powerful - to save that which cannot save itself. A great way to let your boys cultivate this aspect of masculinity is to let them play with wooden swords and plastic guns when they're small, and as they grow, introduce them to real weapons as their maturity level rises.

Sage: A man is suppose to have wisdom, however, in our culture, wisdom isn't a virtue that many care to attain. Unlike Solomon, who chose wisdom over riches, most men alive would choose riches over wisdom, why, because they weren't raised to know better. We should be instilling in our sons nuggets of wisdom from the early stages of their childhood, and allow them opportunities to implement some decision making skills throughout their early adult lives so we can evaluate how we did. Acquaint your boys with the book of Proverbs, and the other wisdom literature in scripture to begin directing their paths and helping them understand life as God does.

Glory-bearer: "For a man ought not to cover his head, since he is the image and glory of God, but woman is the glory of man." (1 Cor. 11:7) A boy must be taught to act like a man because he bears the image of God. He must not be allowed to express himself in a whiny, pouty fashion that detracts from, and neuters his masculinity. He's an image bearer, and with this great endowment comes great responsibility.

If we help our boys with these aspects of masculinity, we'll be well on our way to raising the kind of sons that will not only populate the kingdom of God, but impact it as well!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Sunshine and showers...

This came to my mind while sitting here this morning and looking out the window at the beautiful morning we are having.  Just wanted to share...

In order to bear good, beautiful fruit, we need both sunshine and showers..
We need both to grow healthy fruit. Too much sunshine and our fruit withers on the vine...too many showers and our fruit becomes overwhelmed and can drown in the flood of showers. Joy and trials...sunshine and showers. We need both so the fruit will be fully ripe and luscious and be known by others as good fruit. Mt. 7:20, John 15:8, Mt 12:33
Don't be upset when showers come and you think all you need is sunshine...showers are a blessing in our lives. And so is sunshine...Trials and joy...we need both.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Fall 2010

Here is an updated photo of me my son took today.  This about 3 1/2 weeks after surgery and I think I look a bit tired still.  I am enjoying the sunshine we have today.  It is 65 out and nice. :)  I am thankful God has allowed me to be rid of cancer and I am blessed with another year to enjoy a beautiful fall. :)  He is gracious...

*Don't forget to enter my gluten free giveaway! I will be drawing a winner on Nov 12th. :)


My husband and I had a conversation about this this morning.  He had revealed to me that he thought that I didn't really trust him to lead our family.  Ouch.  It only hurt because after I thought about it, I think he might be on to something.  He asked me to do a simple thing this morning that I didn't really want to do and I let him know it.  It wasn't anything sinful. But, instead of just doing what he asked of me, I balked at it and complained.  We argued.  He wanted me to trust him in what he was asking of me and if I had a problem with it, to let him know nicely later after I did what he asked.  Sounds kinda barbaric, huh?  In fact in the argument, I called him a barbarian. ;)  Not very gentle...

He said if I trusted his leading of our family like I say I do, then I wouldn't question him on so many things and just do what he asks.  He's right. I struggle with being submissive at times, but it's what I desire and strive for.  But, I sometimes fail. Why is it so hard for me to trust his leading?  Fear.  Plain and simple.  Fear of him not leading how God is wanting, fear of him making wrong decisions, fear of him hurting me.  But, fear is from the evil one.  And believe me when I say that the evil one was coming against us this morning.  We stopped and prayed and worked it out and talked about trust.  I said I would trust him more.  Now this afternoon, God has given me another opportunity to trust his leading.  I wasn't quite ready to practice it so soon. ;)  He is making a decision in the next couple days that will ultimately affect me.  I have shared my desire, but ultimately he makes the final decision.  It may break my heart, it may bring my heart joy.  It's in his hands...all I can do is trust that God will speak to his heart in this matter and he will listen.  My answer would be yes, but I have to wait and see what the final answer will be.  Trust and patience...

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Cold mornings...

It's been cold in the mornings around here.  The house quickly warms up after the fire is started in the woodstove. :)  It's almost that time of year...the time of hibernation.  Ryan will be laid off for the winter, the house is warm from the woodstove, and the house smells good from the goodies being baked.  It's a time of rest and time spent together. 

I've been feeling better...Some days still are clouded with aches and pains, but I am looking forward to the day when that surgical pain is all gone. :)  I've been able to do more and that makes me feel better.  I've been back to cooking supper every night.  It feels good to be able to provide that for my family again. 

We have revamped Hunter's homeschool and look forward to starting the new approach Monday.  This is a rich, advanced curriculum (Charlotte Mason approach) and I think he will benefit a lot from it. 

I'm really enjoying the coziness of the house on these cold days.  It's nice to spend time with my family. It's great to have my son at home with me to teach him life lessons and more about God.  It will be nice having my husband home this winter to help in that.  He is really desiring to build up our family and make it closer.  He is realizing that the three of us together are the only stable family he has and he wants to nurture that.  I won't complain. :)  God is really working in his heart.

I pray everyone enjoys their weekend.  I know I will. :)

Friday, November 5, 2010

Is there anything too hard for Jehovah?

Here is God's loving challenge to you and to me today.  He wants us to think of the deepest, highest, worthiest desire and longing of our hearts, something which perhaps was our desire for ourselves or for someone dear to us, yet which has been so long unfulfilled that we have looked upon it as only a lost desire, that which might have been but not cannot be, and so have given up hope of seeing it fulfilled in this life.

That thing, if it is in line with what we know to be His expressed will, God intends to do for us, even if we know that it is of such utter impossibility that we only laugh at the absurdity of anyone's supposing it could ever now come to pass.  That thing God intends to do for us, if we will let him.  Nothing is too hard for Jehovah to do for those that trust Him. "Streams in the Desert"

This was my devotion this morning...I could definitely think of the "thing" for me that would seem impossible and have given up hope in and it would be to see my "dad" again and have a relationship with him.  It has been my hearts desire to have an earthly father that is involved in my life.  But, I also know, it has to be His will.  It's just hard to know what to do.  Do I hold on to hope that someday by the power of God, we will have the relationship we both desire or do I give up on that thought, move on, and try to forget about never seeing him again?  With the holidays coming up, it stirs my emotions to what once was and it saddens me.  But I also know this...fretting over that from which we have been removed or which has been taken away from us, will not make things better, but it will prevent us from improving those which remain.  I just need the good Lord to guide me in this. I pray for them every night and so doing keeps all the hurt in the forefront.  I just don't know what to do about it.  I miss and love him dearly.  I just don't know how to let that go...I wish he could tell me.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Gluten Free Giveaway!

As a person with Celiac Disease I was excited about this giveaway. :)  General Mills has generously offered this giveaway through MyBlogSpark!  As you can see it contains lots of great products.
  • Betty Crocker® Gluten-Free Brownie Mix
  • Betty Crocker® Gluten-Free Yellow Cake Mix
  • Betty Crocker® Rich & Creamy Chocolate Frosting
  • Honey Nut Chex® Cereal
  • Bisquick® Gluten Free Original Pancake and Baking Mix
  • Betty Crocker® Fruit Flavored Snacks Variety Pack - Fruit Roll-Ups®, Fruit Gushers®, Fruit by the Foot®
  • Peanut Butter Cookie Lärabar® Snack Bar
  • Betty Crocker® Potato Buds® Mashed Potatoes
  • Betty Crocker® Red Serving Spoon
I appreciate the labeling of General Mills/Betty Crocker products.  They are easy to see if the product is gluten free or not just by looking under the Nutritional Facts.  It saves a lot of label reading, which can take time at the grocery store.

I have used all the products above except for the potato buds.  My husband doesn't prefer a boxed potato.  But, all the other products are very good.  The brownies are one of the best boxed brownie mixes I have used, gluten free or otherwise.  Nice chocolaty goodness. :) The cake is nice also.  It is moist and tasty!  I highly recommend both products. 

Some Facts About Gluten:
Gluten is a protein naturally found in certain grains such as wheat, rye, barley and some oats.  It can be hidden in things like broth, soy sauce, imitation crab, marinades, and even envelopes (the part you lick)

Who Should Avoid Gluten?
About 3 million Americans suffer from a serious medical condition called Celiac Disease.  For someone with this disease, eating gluten-containing foods cause damage to the lining of the small intestine.  This damage makes it very difficult for the body to absorb nutrients from foods.  Over time this damage can lead to malnourishment and possibly other complications.  Some people avoid gluten due to a sensitivity to it while others make a personal choice to avoid it.  You can find hundreds of gluten free products from General Mills at liveglutenfreely.com

To enter for this giveaway all you need to do is leave me a comment telling me your favorite gluten free recipe or a product that you would like to see available gluten free.

I will draw a winner on November 12th! Good luck!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Homestead blessings...

Our church has some of the Homestead Blessing dvd's to check out.  I watched the soap making one and was inspired. :)  I've always wanted to make my own soap and I've only made glycerin soaps.  If you haven't seen this video yet, I highly recommend it.  It flows nice and the ladies are easy to understand.

For my birthday this past Sunday, I got a stick blender. :)  It's something I needed so I can finally make cold processed soap.  I'm looking forward to making some soap for gifts this year.  Things have been so topsy-turvey around here lately that I feel like the holiday season has caught me off guard.  I don't like to be stressed during this season.  It takes the focus off of what it's all really about.  It's not about running around crazy trying to find the perfect gift for everyone and heaven forbid if you miss someone.  It's about Christ and family and sharing the love, hope, and grace He has given...

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"There is no place like a farm for raising children, where they can have in such abundance the fresh air and sunshine, with pure living water, good wholesome food and a happy outdoor life" -Laura Ingalls Wilder