A good day!

A good day!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Discovering the spoken Word...

Our family started reading the bible again together last night.  We tend to read individually, but not together. So we started last night. Some of our problem of doing it together was that we could only do it in the evenings when my husband comes home, which is sometimes later. We would read a chapter and take turns reading verses and we would end up yawning, being distracted, and tired. Sooooo, last night we discovered that the bible app we have on our smart phones has a feature that you can click to have someone read the scripture.

My first reaction last night to this was "oh this is going to be computer animated and drive me crazy!" But, when my husband clicked on the NIV version to be read, a nice male voice with some sort of comforting accent started to read. I got goose bumps. The Word came to life! We followed along in our own bibles (not on the phone) and underlined what jumped out at us. It was great! The voice made the stories come to life and I could easily visualize myself in the stories. It made me think of how the Word was read in Jesus time in the temples. There is just something about hearing the Word spoken.

It was a new discovery for us and it will make bible time so much easier, especially on my eyes and voice, which both tend to get weak in the evenings. :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

My group on facebook...

 I have created a group on facebook for like minded people who are homemakers and/or homesteaders. Come check it out and share your experiences. :)

Homemakers and Homesteaders Group on Facebook

Thank all!

Which way would you choose?

There are two ways of getting out of a trial. One is to simply try to get rid of the trial, and be thankful when it is over. The other is to recognize the trial as a challenge from God to claim a larger blessing than we have ever had, and to hail it with delight as an opportunity of obtaining a larger measure of Divine grace. Thus even the adversary becomes an auxiliary, and the things that seem to be against us turn out to be for the furtherance of our way. Surely, this is to be more than conquerors through Him who loved us.
--A. B. Simpson

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Fall cooking...


Yesterday was my husband's birthday and I cooked one of his favorite meals. Stuffed acorn squash.

These were pretty ones that I picked up at the farmer's market. I like them better than the green skinned ones. :)

I simply cut them in half and seed them. Put them in the microwave cut side down for 5 to 7 min until tender. Take out and put on cookie sheet. Stuff with cooked sausage of your choice. I use a natural sausage and add a bit of real maple syrup to it. Sprinkle the flesh of the squash with salt and pepper and pop in a 350 degree oven for about 30 min or so. Take out and enjoy!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Happy Birthday!


Happy 34th birthday to my wonderful husband! He is such a hard worker and a blessing to our family. He is the head of our house and I'm so thankful for him. He is my cheerleader and encourages me when I need it and is firm when I need it, too. He is a man of steel and velvet. I can't wait to serve with him in Venezuela next month. I hope to celebrate many more birthdays together.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Choose the right thing...

Oh how it seems that I have struggled with this lately...:( I am being honest with you when I say, that I can have a tendency to be selfish. Here is an example...

Last night, at the end of church service, we found out that Ryan's grandpa was taken to the hospital and we needed to go there. I was exhausted, weak, and hungry. Those were the first things that came to my mind. I am ashamed to say I didn't immediately think of his grandpa. :( I didn't choose the right thing...I chose self. We went to the hospital and found out he has pneumonia and is ok.

I repented from that selfish behavior and strongly desire not to repeat it. I am working hard on not being selfish. It's not a character trait I want to have. I am so thankful for God's grace and forgiveness and another opportunity to chose the right thing...

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Pumpkin Cream Oreo Tarts

These come from Tasty Kitchen. I am hoping to make these this weekend! Yum! Of course, mine will be gluten free. :)



One of my new favorite pumpkin recipes, just in time for fall!

Ingredients

  • FOR THE CRUST:
  • 16 whole Original Oreo Cookies (mine are gluten free)
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter, Melted
  • FOR THE FILLING:
  • 8 ounces, weight Cream Cheese, softened
  • ¾ cups Plain Pumpkin Puree
  • ½ cups Granulated Sugar
  • ½ teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • ¼ teaspoons Ground Cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoons Ground Nutmeg
  • FOR THE CREAM:
  • ½ cups Heavy Cream
  • 3 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
  • ¼ teaspoons Vanilla Extract
  • Chopped And Toasted Walnuts, For Garnish (optional)

Preparation Instructions

For the crust, in a food processor, grind Oreo cookies. Pour in melted butter and pulse to mix. Spoon mixture into 4 individual tart pans (mine were 4 inches x 1/2 inch) and press mixture down and up the sides of the pans. Place into the refrigerator.
For the filling, in a large bowl, whip cream cheese until smooth. Stir in pumpkin puree, sugar, vanilla and spices. Whip 1 minute on high. Scrape sides and mix again another 15 seconds or so until smooth. Divide mixture evenly between tarts and smooth the tops. Return to the refrigerator.
For the cream, whip cream with sugar and vanilla until stiff peaks form. Divide evenly between the four tarts and spread over top. Sprinkle with toasted walnuts. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Keep your face to the sunshine...

Keep your face to the sunshine and you cannot see the shadow. ~Helen Keller

If we keep our face towards God, we will not see the shadows in our life. Keeping our eyes on Christ allows us to keep our eyes off self.

If you are suffering, keep your face to the sunshine...let everything else fade away.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Still have lots to do!

It feels like I will be getting ready for Venezuela right up until we leave. :) I have a lot of sewing to do. I couldn't find any decent long shorts to wear there, so I have to make some. I'm really just improvising and making some pants I found at the thrift shop into shorts. I can't sew for very long anymore. I get very weak and sore and my eyes, because of the damage, just aren't what they used to be. The material goes blurry a lot. To think a few years ago I made all my clothes. (granted I only wore cape dresses then)

I am still trying to get the house organized before we leave. Fall cleaning is underway, but it's very slow. I am still having to work on business things until it's sold in November and that takes a bit of a toll on me.  But, I enjoy being a keeper at home so much. :)  I look forward to sparkling windows, cakes in the oven, cookies in the jar, and warm winter nights in front of the woodstove.

Please keep us in your prayers as we ready ourselves for Venezuela. We leave Oct 16th. :)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Our "little" buddy...


This is our "little" buddy, Magnum. He is a Doberman and we love him. He's 4 yrs old now. He was about the size of his head when we got him lol. He's a great dog, albeit lazy. :) His normal day is going outside to potty, eating, laying on couch or floor, repeat. He does love to take walks though. Hunter takes him up to the widows house a few times a week. He really likes that. We chose not to crop his ears and I'm glad we didn't. I like him like this. He is a very laid back dog. :)

I went thrift shopping today and was disappointed in the selection. I really wanted to find some sweaters for me and work pants for my husband. Just wasn't to be. I did find a great mini muffin pan that I can use to make my apple cider donut holes. :) I will make those this week. Can't wait. :) We are having chili and cornbread for supper tonight. Yum!

I'm thinking about Venezuela every day. I am anticipating something wonderful and divine appointed. I want to be prayed up and I want to have a servants heart. They say one way to know if you have a servant's heart or not is to be treated like one and see how you react. I am ashamed to say that sometimes I don't react to well, but it does depend on the circumstance and motives of the other person. Still, it's something I want to be aware of. I want to be humble.

I am desperate for energy, less pain, strength, etc that I have been praying about it a lot. I just want to get back in the saddle so to speak. I cannot wait until my last two shows are done for the business! I have been reminded that God didn't create me for that...He created me to be a keeper at home. Something I am longing to get back to completely. Please, Lord, let my body recover enough after starting treatment that I may be a blessing to my family...

Monday, September 19, 2011

It's winding down...

Saturday was our last market day for our business. It was a great day there, the best we had all year. Nice way to end the market. We are selling the business as of November 7th. We had 3 people approach us about selling, which made me proud of my products. :) We chose the first person who had interest in buying. She will be using my recipes, but not our name. :) Sooo, Wiseley Used Herbs will live on in someone else's life and my former customers will have a place to purchase the products they have come to love. I still have two shows to do before we sell.


I will be glad to be able to focus my strength and energy on my home. I miss it. Being a Keeper at Home is very important to me. Not having the strength and good health to do both my business and things at home was discouraging, but I know my heart lies at home. Anyone that knows me, knows that. :)  I am praying that when I start treatment next month, it will do the trick and I will be able to get back to what I love with more strength and energy...providing yummy homecooked, made from scratch meals, canning, sewing, keeping home, homeschooling more focused, making our groceries, making our own medicine, and making soap just for my family.

It brings my heart so much joy to do those things for my family. So much that it's hard to express it here. Today I will focus on volunteering at the church, homeschool, doing what cleaning I can, cooking supper, and writing up thank you letters for our wonderful donors for Venezuela. So blessed to share that experience with my husband. :)

I pray you all have a great day. It's a bit dreary hear weather wise, but it helps me relax. ;)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Perfection OF suffering...

"The Lord will perfect that which concerneth me" (Ps. 138:8).

There is a Divine mystery in suffering, a strange and supernatural power in it, which has never been fathomed by the human reason. There never has been known great saintliness of soul which did not pass through great suffering. When the suffering soul reaches a calm sweet carelessness, when it can inwardly smile at its own suffering, and does not even ask God to deliver it from suffering, then it has wrought its blessed ministry; then patience has its perfect work; then the crucifixion begins to weave itself into a crown.

It is in this state of the perfection of suffering that the Holy Spirit works many marvelous things in our souls. In such a condition, our whole being lies perfectly still under the hand of God; every faculty of the mind and will and heart are at last subdued; a quietness of eternity settles down into the whole being; the tongue grows still, and has but few words to say; it stops asking God questions; it stops crying, "Why hast thou forsaken me?"

The imagination stops building air castles, or running off on foolish lines; the reason is tame and gentle; the choices are annihilated; it has no choice in anything but the purpose of God. The affections are weaned from all creatures and all things; it is so dead that nothing can hurt it, nothing can offend it, nothing can hinder it, nothing can get in its way; for, let the circumstances be what they may, it seeks only for God and His will, and it feels assured that God is making everything in the universe, good or bad, past or present, work together for its good.

Oh, the blessedness of being absolutely conquered! of losing our own strength, and wisdom, and plans, and desires, and being where every atom of our nature is like placid Galilee under the omnipotent feet of our Jesus. --Soul Food

The great thing is to suffer without being discouraged. --Fenelon

"The heart that serves, and loves, and clings,
Hears everywhere the rush of angel wings."

~Streams in the Desert

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Crockpots and hair cuts...

I woke up this morning looking forward to getting my hair trimmed. I've been trying to go every other month to keep my hair in better shape, plus it's relaxing. :) Well, all I wanted was a trim...She did a bit more than that. :( I don't know why hairdressers take so much off when you just want a trim...they must learn that in school. lol

I gotta say, I sure like my crockpot. :) I put chicken in it this morning and love how it smells up the house with it's wonderful aroma. It makes things easier on me with being weak right now. I hope to find some more recipes for it.

I had a friend stop by today with a gift card for us for Cracker Barrel! It was super nice and very appreciated. :) Saving it for difficult days...

Hunter got 100% on a math quiz today! He was so proud of himself. I think it's the first time he's gotten a 100% and it was in fractions (his worst section). I am glad he is getting some confidence in math. :)

I have been in much better spirits today.
I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do. ~Helen Keller
 I have really come to understand what trials are, what they mean in my life, and what kind of person they shape me to be. I am more compassionate, open minded, and patient now than I have ever been. I am so thankful for God opening up my eyes to see things the way He does. It is my desire to grow closer to Him and become the person He is shaping me to be. I never want to be disappointing to Him...
My husband is home early tonight and I am soooo looking forward to cozying up to him on the couch tonight. It is pretty chilly here in central Illinois and I can't think of a better way to spend my evening. :) God has truly blessed me with him. He has grown so much from our high school days...we both have.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I am a blessed mother...

Having a son who loves you and loves the Lord is such a blessing! He is growing up so fast...

He has a heart for those that are hurting, the underdog...much like I did/do when I was his age. He will make a good husband someday. :) He visits the widow up the road who is 85 yrs old and spends hours talking with her, helping her around the house, and just being a joy to her.

He loves little kids that "aren't quite right." He has compassion for them and spends time with them. He likes to be around the outcasts and give the the benefit of the doubt.

We may have a future missionary on our hands...only God knows.

I am thankful to have him around this old homestead to help me...




I am so blessed to be loved by such an awesome son! I pray God continues to work in his life and that we continue to raise him up with a love for God and His people...

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pride and not picking up the pieces...

I've heard that when bad things happen and we seem to crumble, that we should "pick up the pieces" and move on...

I have discovered that I don't want to pick up those pieces...let me explain.

I am prideful. I think a lot about myself...well at least my illness anyway. It's a focus. It's become all about me. "I" hurt today...again, "I" am tired today...again, "I" am weak today...again, etc. "I", "I", "I"...it's not fitting for me or becoming in my mind to be that focused on "me." Of course it comes naturally to think of "me" when it's "my" body that is constantly reminding "me" of it's ails. But, it's become too much. I crumbled today...

And I don't want to pick up those pieces...Instead, I think I will leave them there on the floor. I will embrace the "new" me. One that looks soberly at the situation and has to learn the new "normal" of my life comes with limitations, but not defeat.

Myasthenia Gravis is not who I am. It's an ugly, at times debilitating disease, but it's not me. I am a child of God. I am a helpmeet. I am a mother. I am a friend....

I will use this ole weak body for the Lord's work in whatever way I can. I will not let this body use me in whatever way it can...I want my focus to be on Him and His kingdom, my family, my friends, and my home.

I realize this disease is not me, but a part of me that I have to learn to love.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

September 11...

"Where were you when the world stopped turnin' that September day?" ~Alan Jackson

I can't believe it's been 10 yrs already...

Friday, September 9, 2011

Test results and stuff...

The neurologist called yesterday to inform me that I DON'T have another muscle disease. My current one is progressing as we thought. I will have to start treatment when we get back from Venezuela. I will do as much as I can there. I'm looking forward to God using me regardless...

I will listen to my husband while we are there and slow down when he tells me to. Frankly, I don't think slowing down will be a problem as my muscles are so much weaker and even typing this post is difficult.

I made my last batch of soap for the business yesterday. Bittersweet. It was a hard day of soap making, making lip balms, salves, cutting soap, labeling products, etc. I am so exhausted this morning. I will be glad when I can rest.  It is so difficult to do the normal chores around here. Last night I realized that I took slicing a pizza for granted...

The other day my husband said to me, "I know this disease will eventually beat you physically, but I don't ever want it to beat you emotionally." I don't want it to either...

It has rained here finally and it's so peaceful. I love fall weather! I can't wait to be strong enough to bake, clean, and decorate for fall. :)

Hope you are all well and enjoying life. :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Home...

"Home is the true wife’s kingdom. There, first of all places, she must be strong and beautiful. She may touch life outside in many ways, if she can do it without slighting the duties that are hers within her own doors. But if any calls for her service must be declined, they should not be the duties of her home. These are hers, and no other one’s. Very largely does the wife hold in her hands, as a sacred trust, the happiness and the highest good of the hearts that nestle there. The best husband—the truest, the noblest, the gentlest, the richest-hearted—cannot make his home happy if his wife be not, in every reasonable sense, a helpmate to him.

In the last analysis, home happiness depends on the wife. Her spirit gives the home its atmosphere. Her hands fashion its beauty. Her heart makes its love. And the end is so worthy, so noble, so divine, that no woman who has been called to be a wife, and has listened to the call, should consider any price too great to pay, to be the light, the joy, the blessing, the inspiration of a home.

Men with fine gifts think it worth while to live to paint a few great pictures which shall be looked at and admired for generations; or to write a few songs which shall sing themselves into the ears and hearts of men. But the woman who makes a sweet, beautiful home, filling it with love and prayer and purity, is doing something better than anything else her hands could find to do beneath the skies."
~J.R. Miller

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

These come from Tasty Kitchen and look delicious!

Giant Brookies



Recipe Description

Think about it, the best chocolate chip cookies meeting the best brownies ever. Magical.

Preparation Instructions

For the brownie layer, in a large bowl, mix all the ingredients together until just combined. Pour into a 13×9 pan that is lined with parchment paper.
For the cookie dough, beat Crisco together with the brown sugar. Add in vanilla, milk and egg. Slowly beat in flour, salt, baking soda and cinnamon. Mix in chocolate chips. Drop by spoonfuls onto the brownie layer.
Bake in a 375 degree F oven for about 25 minutes. Allow to cool completely. I refrigerate them to speed up the cooling process. Enjoy!

Ingredients

  • FOR THE BROWNIE LAYER:
  • 1-½ cup Sugar
  • ¾ cups Flour
  • ¾ cups Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 3 whole Eggs
  • ¾ cups Butter, Melted
  • 1 cup Semi-sweet Chocolate Morsels
  • FOR THE TOP COOKIE LAYER:
  • ¾ cups Butter Flavored Crisco
  • 1-¼ cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Tablespoons Milk
  • 1 whole Egg
  • 1-¾ cup Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • ¾ teaspoons Baking Soda
  • ½ teaspoons Cinnamon
  • 1-½ cup Semi-sweet Chocolate Morsels

Monday, September 5, 2011

Time sure does fly...

I can't believe my son is 14! His birthday was the 3rd. He is growing up taller and getting more mature. He is becoming a young man.

We took him out to eat on his birthday at a Hibachi grill place. He liked that a lot. We took him canoeing yesterday and he really liked that. He and his dad did the paddling while I rested in the canoe. It was nice to look at the scenery and float down river. Pretty relaxing, although today I am very tired and sore from it all, but it was worth it. :)

Today we are going to celebrate with a giant cookie "cake." He got a new phone, a couple Dr. Who books and some money to spend or save.

I hope everyone is having a great Labor Day weekend. I am enjoying our weather now. It is MUCH cooler and my body prefers that. :)

Friday, September 2, 2011

Doctor's visit...

My disease is progressing.
We are still waiting for results to determine if I have another muscle disease. He is considering IVIG treatment (no fun and requires me to be admitted) and I will start immunosuppressives after I return from Venezuela (which he told me to make sure I rest and don't overdo there). He also increased a dosage on a current medication. I am a bit disappointed that my disease has/is progressing, but we will try and slow it down as much as possible.
I appreciate your prayers. I will be closing Wiseley Used Herbs at the end of December. I am just too worn out and need to focus on my family and have energy for them.
There is a day... 

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Home...


"A true home is one of the most sacred of places. It is a sanctuary into which men flee from the world’s perils and alarms. It is a resting-place to which at close of day the weary retire to gather new strength for the battle and toils of tomorrow. It is the place where love learns its lessons, where life is schooled into discipline and strength, where character is molded.

Few things we can do in this world are so well worth doing as the making of a beautiful and happy home. He who does this builds a sanctuary for God and opens a fountain of blessing for men.

Far more than we know, do the strength and beauty of our lives depend upon the home in which we dwell. He who goes forth in the morning from a happy, loving, prayerful home, into the world’s strife, temptation, struggle, and duty, is strong--inspired for noble and victorious living. The children who are brought up in a true home go out trained and equipped for life’s battles and tasks, carrying in their hearts a secret of strength which will make them brave and loyal to God, and will keep them pure in the world’s severest temptations."
~J.R. Miller

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I'm a sucker for wildflowers!
"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