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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

14 years of slavery, or Real Beauty

Peace be with you.

1 Peter 3: 3-5
3 Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. 4 You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. 5 This is how the holy women of old made themselves beautiful.
A few years ago, I was getting ready to go to MOPS. I was putting on my mascara, because I ALWAYS put on mascara before leaving the house at that time. ("That time" =Ages 14-28) I was yelling at my kiddos to GET THEIR SHOES ON! FIND THEIR COATS! AHHHHHHHHHHHH!
And then, the 1 Peter verses came to mind. The Holy Spirit put them there, I'm sure.
And I realized that I spent all my time getting our bodies ready for MOPS, feeding, clothing, etc. and NO time getting our spirits ready for the day.
And I knew that God wanted me to skip the mascara and check in with Him through prayer and Bible reading instead. And to nuture my kids' souls, and not care so much that they wear matching clothes. Who am I trying to impress? Wouldn't the moms at MOPS be more blessed if I and my children walk in smiling and a bit frumpy than if we walk in looking all matchy and pretty with grumpy faces?
I quit my slavery to outward appearances that day. I put peace and joy before clean and matching. And God is good, and we are still almost always clean. LOL
And God really does bless others through my less than perfect looking family of 6 soon to be 7. There's a stain on my blouse, but a happy, cooing baby in my arms that people can't get enough of.
Cade's hair is sticking up, but he is holding an old lady's hand telling her about something (apparently) fascinating.
Praise God for His goodness. And for the freedom He gives. Letting go of my mascara wand has brought me great joy and freedom.
I had to let go of wanting people to think I'm pretty, but guess what? I'm only fair-to-middling, even with make up. LOL
But with Christ's love shining out of my face, I'm RADIANT!  RADIANT!
L'oreal can't put that in a bottle.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

How to be rich... mind, if not in money.

I grew up hearing these sayings over and over. They are part of who I am. If you ever wondered how we live so happily on one teacher's salary, here are a few pointers.

Eat what you can. What you can't eat, can.

Take all you want. Eat all you take.


Waste not, want not.

A penny saved is a penny earned.

Want in one hand and 'spit'* in the other and see which one fills up first.

Don't waste food. Don't you know there are starving children in Africa?

Make it do or do without.

A fool and his money are soon parted.

Please feel free to comment and I'll add any excellent adages you share to this post.


*edited for cleanliness

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Blackberry-Strawberry-Blueberry-Elderberry Preserves

Blackberry-Strawberry-Blueberry-Elderberry Preserves

9 C Blackberries
2 C Strawberries
2 C Blueberries
2 C Elderberries
1/3 C All Natural Dutch Gel
1/3 C Lemon Juice
5 C Sugar

Mash all berries and Dutch Gel and Lemon Juice in a large pot. Heat over medium high heat until boiling. Add all the sugar at once (Pre-measure into medium bowl.) Bring to boil. Boil for 1 minute.
Follow safe and sanitary canning procedures, process in hot water bath at a boil for 15 minutes.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Looking ahead

I just skyped with Anastasija.
I am so glad for that priviledge.
She looks healthy and happy and her English seems to be getting even better.
We talked about what I have planted in my garden- beets for borscht and tomatoes for pizza sauce, two things she likes to eat. It is so wonderful to think that the food I am growing today will be ready for her to eat when she comes home.

I have been thinking a lot lately about how my family will look in a few months. We will have 5 kids- an 11 year old, a 7 year old, a 5 year old, a 2 year old, and a none-year old. I have already started hanging Anastasija's dresses in the closet next to Brilyn's- they are just a little longer than Bri's. I have a pair of shoes that someone gave us that will probably fit Anastasija when she gets here- I didn't put them into storage, I just put them in the shoe bin.
Brilyn has been talking about camp next summer, and it has started to sink in that next summer I will have a 12 YEAR OLD to plan camp for.
I have been preparing for the coming school year- I will have a Kindergartner, a second grader, and a fifth grader. I wonder where she will be academically?  Will she be a willing learner, or will it be like pulling teeth? We'll see! As we will for Cade, as well.

I already have a read aloud planned for bedtime reading when we have a boys' room and a girls' room: For the girls- Ella Enchanted. For the boys- whatever Joe wants to read!

Each night when I tuck my kids in and bless them, I pray for Anastasija. It always hurts a little, blessing my child who is so far from home. I know that God's timing is perfect, but I always ask Him if He can put a rush on things to spare my heart, and hers. And in the mean time, could He please keep an extra close eye on her. Talk about having to trust your children to the Lord- there is not one little thing I can to do keep her safe but pray- which, when I think about it, is truly the BIGGEST thing you can do for any of your children, near or far.

Well, for now I will be thankful for Skype, and wait, knowing that God has a perfect plan. And He can keep my heart in perfect peace while I wait.


Let's get all these kiddos under one roof, shall we?

About Me

About Me
I love Jesus, my hubby, my 6 kiddos, my farm, good books and good food.