Saturday, June 30, 2007
Friday, June 29, 2007
Only the wheat and leaves were left to be finished on this one!
Framing is expensive and our wall space is limited, so I picked my two favorite to finish first and have framed. I just hung them last week! I have finished three more, but I am planning to make one into a table runner and another, a pillow front. The third lends it's self to a bread basket cover, and just needs to be lined for that purpose.
I am not skilled at embroidery, but I am learning with each completed piece. I will lay them aside again until cooler days, since my evenings now are most often spent in the garden. Since they have waited 45 years to be finished, I'm guessing another few months won't hurt!
Thank you for coming to take a look! Come again soon!
Thursday, June 28, 2007
We prayed, packed her up and took her to Camp in peace.
We breathed more easily when we got her home - safe and sound. We didn’t know she was packing more than just her suitcase! She has a bug - a pretty nasty bug. Her tummy hurts. She is tired. She is really tired of going to the bathroom. We’ve been to the Doctor and are on our way to finding out just which bad bug she brought home form camp, but most likely it is Giardia, from the pond or creek at Camp. With lots of liquids, healthy foods, medicine and rest she will be just fine.
Tuesday, June 26, 2007
Addition: Donatos Pizza just sent an add with a tasty looking salad combination that we'll have to try too!
Romaine + Grilled Chicken Breast + Red Apples + Blue Cheese Crumbles + Honey Roasted Pecans + Dried Cranberries + Bacon
Monday, June 25, 2007
Ta-da! I don't know why it is working now or even when I made these particular color choices, but at least it is a change! Blogger.com's green hue choices are pretty bright and yellowish, and I am definitely a creamy and sage kind of gal, so I hope it meets with your approval! I'm still looking at foolproof photo editing software that is inexpensive so that I can play around with my header a bit too, but that is on the 'one of these days' list, pushed back by the imperatives!
I hope you are having a blessed day! The Dreamer is still very tired from her camp experience, but she and her brother are having the best of time playing Playmobil with each other! Absence makes the heart grow fonder ... for a time!
Sunday, June 24, 2007
It is really good to have her home - we all missed her! We prayed for her daily, and often the Lord would bring her to mind. I spent 5 hours deep cleaning her room on Thursday - washing walls, scouring her bathroom, finding the floor in her closet, sorting her clothing and ironing her starched curtains. She has some toys she needs to sort and go through - way too many toys!
Our hope in sending her to our church camp was that her time away from our family would allow her to have some freedom in a safe envoirnment, to learn some responsibility, and give her the opportunity to see a bit about how other children are growing up. Our prayer is that these experiences will help her to see God as her own personal Father, and to help make her faith real to her in different circumstances. I look forward to seeing how God has used her camp experience to draw her closer to Himself!
And now, as much as I'd rather not .... it is time to delve into the mysteries of the laundry bag!!! Strange and suspicious odors none the less, I must see what can be salvaged and cut up the rest for the rag bag! Thank goodness for the sanitize cycle and Mrs. Meyer's lavender laundry soap!
Saturday, June 23, 2007
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
- fold and put away a load of wash
- hang out a load of laundry
- iron 7 men's short sleeved shirts
- iron 5 logo tee shirts - without smearing the logo this time!
- piece the top of a doll quilt
- sort a stack of mail and papers
- tidy one closet
- tidy one shelf on the Dreamer's bookshelf
- make a new 'mattress and pillow' for doll cradle
- plant 6 perennials
- weed a small patch of juga
- stack and 'stitch in the ditch' one doll quilt
- decorative stitch said doll quilt
- bind and finish same doll quilt
- finish 1 patio chair cushion by handsewing the seat and back together - 6 more to go (at last!)
- iron 12 shirts and shorts for The Storyteller
- download pictures from camera
- clean off a small patch of countertop
- read a Bernstein Bear book to our boy
- race a remote control Hummer all over the driveway with our boy
- pluck my eyebrows - ouch!
I also prepared a turkey breast and stuck it in the oven for dinner - we don't usually have Tuesday night turkey, but The Storyteller put the frozen on sale turkey breast in the Grammy Flat fridge instead of the freezer - thankfully I discovered it and it didn't go to waste! It will make for some easy lunches and luscious leftovers!
I gave myself the fun breaks of sewing between the other jobs, but it was fun to see just how much I can get done playing Beat the Timer! My house still looks like a whirlwind went through, but I am making progress! I am thanking God for more energy this week than I had last week! He gives strength to the weary!
As we were popping sun warmed berries into our mouths, The Storyteller asked me to make Queen Schnoodle's Blackberry Pie recipe! We've been listening to Steve Green's The Adventures of Sir Bernard - The Good Knight and learning the 12 Chivalric Virtues. Queen Schnoodle was some fabulous pie maker - she had 1000 pies in her pie pantry - but we didn't get enough berries to make even one! Maybe another day!
We are learning the virtues of Friendliness, Thrift, Loyalty, Obedience, Courtesy, Trustworthiness, Cheerfulness, Bravery, Helpfulness, Kindness, Cleanliness and Reverence in a fun and memorable way. Every time we see one of the virtues in practice, we encourage with 'I think you just showed Courtesy ( or whatever virtue is appropriate) - that's wonderful, Son!' He is really making an effort to remember the virtues and put them into practice - we are not even fighting about toothbrushing anymore, since Cleanliness is one the the virtues. Thank you, Mr. Steve Green!
Did you notice the cape and the Little Dog under the Storyteller's arm - we have been 'playing' Sir Bernard all week!
Sunday, June 17, 2007
Thursday, June 14, 2007
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Many of the moms there had come prepared with large coolers on wheels and mammoth tote bags filled and overflowing. I wondered how long they planned to stay, since it looked like they had all but moved in. I could tell it wasn't their first afternoon poolside. They were deeply tanned and quite at home.
Their children were burned. Really burned. It made me very upset to see so many burnt children - I have seen skin cancer in all it's painful ugliness and I am on a mission to do what I can to help my children treat their largest organ with a lot of respect. I know there is nasty stuff in sun screen - we use one from Kiss My Face which has the least of the nasty stuff I have found - and we wear rash guards, t-shirts, and cover-ups. We did our best to be protected and I think even we got a bit too much sun!
I did get in to the icy pool with the children for a while, but sensing that I was slowing them down, I took to the lounge chair to warm up. They had a great time together and seemed to be getting along just fine without me.
Since God's been talking with Brenda in the Wal*Mart parking lot, I decided to use my time to listen for the still small voice of my heavenly Father. I really need some wisdom to find the balance, again.
It is really easy for me to loose sight of just how long we are here for.
Like the moms at the poolside I seem to feel like we need to surround ourselves with a lot of stuff that meets our needs and brings us comfort. I'm all for being prepared, and I am not being critical of their desire to meet the needs of their children, but lugging half the house out for an afternoon at the pool seems a bit excessive. They could make do with less.
I could make do with less. So could our children. We have so much - too much! And, I struggle with wanting even more - like that backyard pool, for example!
I started thinking about a pool in our backyard again and decided it's not very likely. The price we would pay for a pool could perhaps support a missionary for several months or provide clean water for a remote small village - something more significant and of much more lasting value. For our family, we are seeking a balance - making our home a place of safety, comfort and warmth is good, but it can't take priority over teaching our children by example to keep an eternal perspective in mind.
I'm pretty sure we won't be wanting to take a pool!
Butterfly image from Antique Clipart
Sunday, June 10, 2007
For fun we:
- slept in until 9 am
- ate breakfast without making our beds first
- made mini loaves of yeast bread for tea time
- a little tidying up here and there
- clean bathrooms and sparkling windows
- read chapters and chapters
- talked about our guys and the fun they would be having
- had a tea party with mini cheese sandwiches, tiny sweets and raspberry tea
- went for a long walk
- long relaxing bubble baths and freshly washed hair
- laid out clothes for Sunday
- a little sewing for Mommy
I guess we are pretty relaxed gals now!
Our guys are home safe and sound and by the sounds of things, they had a terrific time! Since they are already making plans for next year, I'd say the weekend was a big hit! The Storyteller fell asleep the minute his head hit the pillow and my dear Historian was not far behind!
So many blessings!
I have been working on making some Summer Discovery Journals for the kids, and it is finally coming together.
I've included a few Bible verses to look up and a few to memorize, trying new foods, plants to press, games to play, toys to re-discover, insects to study, playgrounds to explore, road trip fun, vocabulary words and more. I plan to print them on cardstock and put them in duotangs for the kids to personalize. I was telling one mom about my idea and she is wanting her kids to join in the fun - they are already 'bored' with summer and it has just begun!
This is the format:
Today I discovered that I can learn from God’s Word! I memorized this verse:
The Lord your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing!
I said it to three people!
Today I discovered that I can be a really big help to my mom by: __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
Today I discovered just how long God has loved me! I found it in Jeremiah 31:3. This is what it says:
I have included some vintage clip art from Antique Clipart and am just finishing up. I was hoping to have about 10 more entries, but I'm running out of ideas. Do you have any suggestions? My target age group is 7-10 years old. I am aiming for it to be fun, safe, not costly, and hopefully, character building! Discovering new things about God's wonderful world is always fun, so I do hope the children enjoy this. As an incentive, I am offering my kids a $10 gift certificate to their favorite toy shop for completing their journals.
Saturday, June 9, 2007
It frustrates me that appliances are built to last only 5-7 years! For example, my mum and dad had a washer and drier for over 30 years which required only minor repairs. They dryer was still in good shape when they replaced it, wanting to switch to a natural gas dryer. My husband and I have had 3 washer and dryer sets in 15 years of marriage! We have friends who are using a deep freeze that was his grandparents - I'm sure it is not as energy efficient as the newer models, but it is 40+ years old and going strong!
I hate knowing that we are filling up landfills with stuff that could be recycled, re-used, repaired or re-purposed! Often it costs more to repair an item than to buy new! Crazy! It was precisely this attitude that landed me my 'cushy' job!
When we took out our patio cushions a month or so ago, I realized they were terribly faded and I went shopping for new cushions. Our inexpensive set is 4 1/2 years old, and survived a minor tornado in which it was picked up and deposited without much damage - the umbrella was mangled, but everything else was fine! Our inflatable kiddie pool is another story - making the headlines of our local newscast as it flew though the neighbourhood, never to be seen again. But I digress!
After quickly mentally adding up my prospective purchase - a mere $285, and quickly recovering from a minor case of sticker shock, I politely inquired if the cushions ever went 'on sale', and I was immediately directed to the new patio sets which were priced at $300 - about the same as 7 new cushions (for our 6 tall chairs and a chaise lounge). This happened at at least 3 stores! I balked.
"What would I do with our old set?" I wondered since I don't host yard sales and I wouldn't give away chairs and cushions that are too shabby for our family to another family.
I went home and started the washer - washing them one by one, hoping to get one more season out of them. The fabric was more than faded though - it was rotten! I persisted, but was left with 3 out of 7 in tact.
I headed to JoAnn Fabrics, coupon in hand, and found that I could cover the 6 chair cushions for just under $90 and it would cost more to replace the stuffing for our lounge cushion than to buy a new complete cushion - go figure!
I debated for a few days - primarily because, while I like making one or two cushions, 6 was a bit much - and since each cushion has two parts - 12 was decidedly too much! Did I really want to buy a new lounge cushion just to tear off the new fabric and sew a matching cover for it? Then I realized that all that mildew proof polyester stuffing would end up in a landfill, so I bought the fabric and have been sewing it together with a 'jeans' needle and upholstery thread, neither of which my sewing machine is too fond of!
I'm almost done - thankfully, but you'll never guess what I've been thinking about while I have been sewing!
I've been thinking that I have a very cushy job compared to the men and women soldiers in Iraq who are giving their lives for our country. No comparison, really I know. I think that part of the reason that this war is so vital is that, we in North America, are so dependant upon the oil that region produces. I feel like it is my duty here at home to use as little of the products produced by that oil as I can - and polyester fiber fill may be only a drop in the bucket, but I'm doing what little I can. Or trying at least!
I read this recently on the message board at New Harvest Homestead:
Last week, Nancy Carter, from homesteadblogger wrote:
Did you know that Americans drain 2.5 million plastic bottles an hour?! In fact, more than 8 billion gallons of bottled water is consumed annually in the US and nearly 90% of those bottles wind up in landfills. My guess is most ladies on this homesteading list are VERY concerned about the millions of plastic bottles ending up in land fills as well as what a safe, economical and healthy alternative might be. In fact, the amount of oil consumed in the manufacture of
bottled water containers would power 100,000 cars for one year. THAT IS A LOT OF OIL???? Does in make sense to transport water all over the place (more oil consumption) when there are inexpensive and very effective water filters available? In fact, if an average family purchased bottled water in the handy containers for their family they would average spending $1000 or more a year.
Marilyn Moll at Urban Homemaker
I have not taken the time to verify these facts - I actually wouldn't know how to source that kind of information, but it is great motivation for me to
reduce our oil consumption and keep on being faithful with our recycling.
We use very little bottled water - we just keep filling up our own plastic water
bottles and never leave home without them! We have a Reverse Osmosis filter
system and our water is pretty good - especially with a squeeze of lemon. We
take fabric bags to the grocery store when we remember - we are trying to do
better there. We recycle those pesky plastic bags and ask for paper whenever we can. We wear cotton clothing. We run errands in groups so we don't have to fill
up as often. We try to be good stewards of the many gifts God has given our
family, and we do try hard to use our resources wisely.
I know it isn't much, but it's what we can do. Little enough. We are sending
men and women to fight a war to protect our country and preserve our quality of life - which includes (in my opinion) an inordinate dependence on the convenience of oil based products. I think I can be a little inconvenienced by sewing some cushions for our family rather than buying new - I know it's a stretch, but it's got me to thinking about other ways to save! What did homemakers do before zipper lock baggies and plastic ware food storage containers? What did grocery stores do before food came packaged in plastic? What did they put in soap and cosmetics before petroleum based products were produced? How can we lesson our dependance?
And now, you know I'm crazy - no need to wonder any longer!
I'll post a picture of my cushions when 'the boys' get back with the camera!
Friday, June 8, 2007
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
Now, about the towels! I need advice here since I seem to have a
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
First of all, how do you do the 'strike-out' line through words? I can italicize, underline and boldface, but I'm striking out at the 'strike-out' line! I'm working with Windows, if that makes a difference.
Second, what is involved in having an ETSY Shop, and how do you pronounce it? Can anyone at all sell homemade goods there?
Lastly, I would like to do some simple photo editing to make a more interesting heading for my blog. What program do I need for that type of thing - keeping in mind that I have very few computer skills?
That's it! Those were my burning questions! Thanks in advance for any help you can offer!
On a more exciting note, my reason for fatigue today is pretty wonderful - I had the opportunity to present the Good News about Jesus to 5 groups of children today at Vacation Bible School because it was Salvation Day - presenting the way of salvation to children is always a blessing to me! I pray that I was clear!
Monday, June 4, 2007
Mommy is no hairdresser, so this up-do was a bit of a challenge! Thankfully she was really pleased with it! I know many of the other girls had their hair done at a salon, but I think simplicity is best, and it just sets an expectation for the future that I am not wanting to begin just yet. We're still working on the inward beauty!
Daddy's gift - some sweetly scented carnations and baby's breath! He made his sweet girl one very proud and happy young lady! She whispered in my ear ' Mommy - I feel so blessed!'
We feel so blessed to have our Dreamer!