Saturday, November 29, 2008

New Christmas Music

Because I love Christmas music, especially worshipful Christmas music - check out Glenn's new song.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Audrey Quote

After bath tonight:

A: Mommy, I want Happy Thanksgiving

Me: You want Happy Thanksgiving?

A: Yes. (Holding out her extended index finger) Just one sweet potato, and dat's enough!

Well, it's a start...

I started the mom blog today. Please check out my thoughts about it, and send me your own. We need your input! :)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


Random to follow the last post with this, but I've been thinking about it all morning...

Would any of you, my dear readers, be interested in starting a "team" blog? Off the top of my head, I feel so compelled right now to encourage mothers. Our job is so huge and so important, and so little value is given to us in the media and society right now. We need to nurture each other (has anyone else read Lisa Bevere's book Nuture? - you should!)

As we all know, it's very difficult to continually post encouraging things. We all have bad days, or just days when we don't have much to say. But I love the idea of working on something like that together. We probably need to clarify the vision a bit too, so any thoughts on that are welcome! Any interest, fellow bloggers?

Thoughts on Democracy

Came across this post today, where she took the time to type out a lengthy passage of C.S. Lewis' Screwtape Letters - one of my favorites. If you take the time to read it, I think you'll be struck, as I was, of how well Lewis described our current social and political situation. Lewis had an incredible ability to see things through to their logical conclusion, and therefore often his work seems prophetic - in the sense that he described something the way it would become, 60-80 years before it happened.

*Edited after I thought of a better way to explain what I mean - someday I'll learn to edit BEFORE posting...

I don't think anyone here would argue that not all ideas are equal. Some ideas are good, some are bad. Although all human life has intrinsic value, that does not mean every person's ideas are good ones. Therein lies a danger in Democracy. If we all have to be equal, no one can be outstanding. If no one is outstanding, what do the rest of us have to reach for, to aspire to? Who can be a hero? Other people's success does not threaten my worth - my worth is founded in what God says about me, not in my accomplishments or in comparing myself.

It's not just the U.S. that is heading this way, either. It seems like the world as a whole wants to cut down the successful ones - that's kind of the whole premise behind socialism/communism and there are so many countries governing with those principles. Of course, heading back into the feudal system isn't a good goal either. It's definitely a balancing act. I'm rambling now, but...thoughts about this?

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Family Principles from Scripture

I'm really loving this kind of thing right now. I remember one time asking God why, if raising children is so important, He didn't tell us more about how to do it. I have to laugh at myself about that now, as I am discovering the vast amounts He has to say on the subject!
I feel terrible today. The cold that has been threatening my kids for two months finally seems to be bugging them and me. Something I ate yesterday hurt my stomach. I didn't go to bed until late, and Hannah decided to get up at 6. We don't do 6 at our about 7:30 or 8? The Jetta is broken again/still (it's a different issue now) so we can't go anywhere. The house is a mess and I have no motivation. I haven't been very nice to the kids today, mainly because I have no energy to "help" them mind or clean up messes. I exercised too hard yesterday and can hardly move today. (Yes, I see all the "I's" in this paragraph. Yes, I'm whining a bit.) Money - no explanation needed.

I know some days are just like this, but I wish life could be without the "survival" days. I wish there was some way to overcome them every time, and make each day full of life and good things. Sometimes all you can do is feed the kids and keep them safe for the day. Waiting out time. It feels like a waste...

On the other hand, we got a ton of food last night for a surprising amount of money. My cupboards and fridge of full of fun things to make and eat. The girls are laughing and playing happily - they are the best of friends lately. Nick is getting better and better. I will probably get a nap this afternoon when the girls go down for theirs in a few minutes. We got another Maeve deposit yesterday - a gown for April that we were hoping for but not really expecting. It's going to be gorgeous - all silk! My kitty loves me. I have a little pile of remnant fabric from Walmart to make clothes for the girls' stuffed animals (a kitty and a bunny that are nearly finished). I also got things to make paper chains with Hannah - kids' scissors, glue sticks, construction paper...I can't wait to show her.

All in all, that doesn't really sound that bad. I bet I take a nap and feel much better. Thank you for reading my therapy session. Feel free to add your own. ;)

Make Your Own Vanilla

Thought this was nifty. Although I have yet to ever buy vodka...for any purpose - not that I wouldn't, just that I haven't! :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

Book Game

This turned out really funny and interesting when a friend posted it on Facebook - please do it! :)

* Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence and what book to this note / post as a comment.

Also, if you would like, post it along with these instructions.

Here's my contribution:

Perhaps they live too far from the "real country" for squirrels and wild rabbits to be more to them than a dream of possible delights.

Home Education by Charlotte Mason


Hannah quote

Every day when I put the girls down for naps, Hannah says to me,

"Mommy! You forgot the text message"!

Number one, she doesn't even know what that means.
Number two, I don't text that much
Number three, how does she remember that every day?

Lesson (Re)learned

I was on Facebook this morning (this was my first mistake), and came across the fiance' of a friend from college who was feeling discouraged. I tried to write something quick to encourage her, and apparently came off preachy...or over spiritual...or something, and got reamed by the next commenter. I hate when this happens. As if I'm just trying to give shallow answers... I wish this didn't bother me so much, but it does. Why is it impossible for everyone to believe that most people mean well, even if they either don't communicate well, or others disagree?

Then I read You Will Be Misunderstood and felt just a tiny bit better...but still?

Weekly Update

1. Nick got his wisdom teeth out Friday. In case you missed my comments on FB, he had four huge impacted teeth that took them a full hour to get out. He also needed a bone graft behind one of them to make sure he didn't lose the next molar. Then, when they took one of his top teeth out, there was no bone between the tooth and his sinus. So he had a hole through to his sinus that they filled with collagen. So, all that to say, he's been one miserable dude the past three days. He felt quite a bit better this morning, and went to work. Hopefully he has a good day.

2. Taking care of everybody was more work than I think I've ever done. I am very blessed to have such an attentive, hard-working husband who does so much for my kids and me. I have new found compassion for single parents, that's for sure!

3. The brand of bread I usually buy (free of yeast, dairy, soy, gluten, egg - Nick says not many people have figured out how to make bread without ingredients. Ha!) has been back-ordered at our grocery store for weeks, so I've been looking for alternatives. This worked pretty well this week, even with egg replacer. Not incredible flavor, but decent texture and definitely filling and full of fiber.

4. Still messing around with the sourdough thing. I'm getting closer with the starter. But, I'm finding no recipes for gluten free sourdough bread online that use real sourdough starter rather than one started with yeast packets that have allergens in them. I may have to create my own...which sounds a little scary and expensive.

5. Down to two (well, really three) students. It's a tradeoff - money or free time?

6. I found this super neat website, full of sewing projects and crafts. I found a stuffed bunny and a stuffed kitty that I'm making for the girls, after finding my sewing machine manual online, and cleaning and oiling my machine so it actually works right. I think they'll love them. :) I actually took I think two years of sewing lessons when I was homeschooled...I think I was 12. It amazes me how much comes back to me when I start working!

7. Thanksgiving - I'm excited. This is probably my favorite holiday. Good food, laughing with family around the table, remembering all the things God has blessed us with, and very little commercialism. Funny how being grateful doesn't really sell much... I chatted with my mom last night about our big family meal, and we're going to stuff the turkey with GF stuffing and make some other minor changes that will make dinner easy for us without changing it a ton for the others. On Friday I will make our own gluten free feast at our house. I really enjoy this! Cooking has become such an outlet for me lately. It's funny...I never would have guessed that would happen.

8. Was at Walmart for diapers the other night (Walmart has much better off-brand diapers than Target, so I have resigned myself), and found one of those wide scarves for $5. I was excited. I made one of our clients show me how she ties hers the other night, and I wore my scarf yesterday and was warm. :) It's the little things...

Alright. Boring myself, so I'll go. What's going on in your world?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Importance of Our Job as Mothers

"Children are a public trust - Now, that work which is of most importance to society is the bringing-up and instruction of the children - in the school, certainly, but far more in the home, because it is more that anything else the home influences brought to bear upon the child that determine the character and career of the future man or woman. It is a great thing to be a parent: there is no promotion, no dignity, to compare with it."

-Charlotte Mason, "Home Education, Vol. 1" p. 1

It is often difficult, especially for those of us who stay at home with our kids, to feel purposeful, needed, useful as a mother. I'm not sure why this is, because it seems that even two generations ago it was not the case. But I have already established here in the past that I will make no impact larger than the one I make on my own children, my own family. So what if my training in music (or your training in...fill in the blank) is intended not to fill my own heart, or change the world as a whole, but ultimately to make an eternal impact on my own children and our home life? What if I create an atmosphere in my home where my children learn to live lives of worship? How much more impact will children who live lives of worship make, more than the person for whom I can facilitate a few minutes of encounter with God during a worship service (not to discount that, but obviously the impact will be less). What if this applies to all of our trades that we learned B.C. (before children)? Education, music, healthcare, business - whatever we did can be passed as a strength to our children through our willingness to give them those gifts...

Just something I'm thinking about...

Phone Call with a Vaccine Maker

Dr. Mercola has a recorded phone call with an employee of a flu vaccine maker. Very interesting...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Weekly Update feels like forever since I did this!

1. 2nd fitting tonight for Tarah. Her dress has a low backed strapless corset, and we're a little concerned about the fit... I hope it will work well. I actually ordered some of that dress tape they use on red carpet gowns to try with it.

2. Nick worked until almost 4 on Saturday, so our weekend felt pretty short. He had hours to catch up on, so he worked like 58 hours last week, I think. Whew.

3. Thanksgiving...I'm starting to think about our menu. We will spend Thanksgiving with my family, but I usually do a complete gluten free meal of our own on Friday. I really enjoy doing it each year! I am finding cooking to be a creative outlet for me lately.

4. On cooking - I am still working with the sourdough starter. This is the third attempt. :) It is supposed to double in size after feeding, within 3-6 hours. It takes more like 12 hours, and it never really doubles. I made a delicious pizza crust/foccacia bread thing with it the other night, but I have been scared to try a whole loaf of bread because I hate for it to turn out like a brick. :)

5. Hannah is doing a new reward system for potty-training. Every time she goes potty she gets a sticker, and when she gets 15, she gets to go on a "date" with mommy or daddy. So, our first date was last night. She wanted to go to Wahoo's for dinner, and then we played around at Target. She seemed really indifferent to the whole thing and I was a little disappointed, honestly. I hoped she would be excited and open up. That said, she does seem really positive with me this morning, like she does feel more connected. She just has a really different way of showing that than I do. I so badly want to "get" her. I'm praying about that a lot right now.

6. Made these Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins over the weekend. I have made these several times, and they turn out so yummy! This is also one of the few cakey recipes I've found that allow for egg replacer without falling in the middle. Yum.

7. Nick's getting his wisdom teeth out on Friday. He's kind of nervous about it. He did such a good job taking care of me with mine. Now it's my turn! If anyone needs me, I'll be single-handedly running the house next weekend. :)

8. Doesn't this look cute and fairly easy? I really want to make something for my kids for Christmas. Maybe this?

9. I got Volume One of Charlotte Mason's writings from Paperbackswap the other day. Oh my goodness. This is how we homeschooled when I was a kid! It's so funny to me that my mom has never heard of her, because she did so much by her teachings. I am finding it to be incredible encouraging and challenging at the same time. The other thing that makes it enjoyable is the style of writing - reminds me so much of a Jane Austen novel. Mason lived around the turn of last century. Thoroughly entertaining.

10. (Are you tired of me yet? I have lots to say today.) This is the last week of lessons for school of worship, which means I go from five students to two. Know anyone who needs lessons?

OK. My house is a wreck. I better get busy!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Saturday, November 15, 2008


So, on Wednesday of last week, our 6 year old laptop finally bit the dust. Through the huge generosity of TWO people I love, we now have a brand-spanking new computer. Well, the computer part is new. The monitor is the old HUGE one that Nick bought in 2000 that weighs more than both of our children...put together. But, it works! The first thing we did was try watching video on youtube - a frustrating experience on the old computer, to put it mildly. I have to admit to crying a little at the clear, steady image. I feel so thankful. Actually, what we watched was good too. Have you seen the new Weepies video that is muppets? SO great. Audrey sat on my lap and watched it over and over.

Therefore, I have been without a computer for a week and a half. I'm amazed at several things:
1. How much you can get done when you are not absorbed in reading 349 million blogs per day.
2. How quiet the house seems when there is no computer yelling at you
3. That the world continues, with or without you
4. That emails do not have to be answered within 30 minutes or less. People generally don't notice if it's 30 minutes or 3 days...or more.
5. That when I choose my reading material, rather than reading whatever Google Reader or Facebook puts in front of me, I learn a lot more and am much more encouraged.
6. That phone calls are much more effective for real connection that anything computer related. 3 1/2 hour dinners are even better. ;)
7. That my children absolutely, positively did not miss the computer one bit. Having mommy more mentally available was huge.

Now. To remember these things and make the appropriate changes.

Oh, and read this post by Glenn. Great reminder and perspective, from someone who loves the U.S., can't vote, and has some thoughts we all need to remember about our citizenship.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

An excellent post

I've read lots of great posts today, but this one by my pastor took the cake. SO good...

Reminders... you, but mostly to me. :) God has lots to say about authority - it's a topic of huge importance to Him. If you can't live in submission to authority, there are many, many not-so-nice things promised to you. And WHO the authority is doesn't seem to matter. If I'm not mistaken, the "governing authorities" referred to in Romans was the emperor Nero, who was arguably the most brutal killer of Christians who has ever existed.

So no, I didn't want Obama to win. But now it's my job to submit and pay him the respect and honor I owe him.

Romans 13

1Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. 4For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. 6This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. 7Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor.

Romans 8:28

28And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Exodus 22:28

28 Do not blaspheme God or curse the ruler of your people.

Titus 3:1

1Remind the people to be subject to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready to do whatever is good, 2to slander no one, to be peaceable and considerate, and to show true humility toward all men.

1 Timothy 2:1,2

1I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone— 2for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.

Col 2:10

10and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority

Heb 13:17

17Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you.

1 Peter 2:11-15

11Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul. 12Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us. 13Submit yourselves for the Lord's sake to every authority instituted among men: whether to the king, as the supreme authority, 14or to governors, who are sent by him to punish those who do wrong and to commend those who do right. 15For it is God's will that by doing good you should silence the ignorant talk of foolish men.

2 Peter 2:9,10

9if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment.[c] 10This is especially true of those who follow the corrupt desire of the sinful nature[d] and despise authority.

Jude 1:8

8In the very same way, these dreamers pollute their own bodies, reject authority and slander celestial beings.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Weekly Update

1. Just another reminder, if you haven't heard it already: pray for the election today. Pray that God's will will be done... (If anybody here wants to go see Palin at 5:15 tonight, you can RSVP here.)

2. The Jetta is not yet fixed. It starts, which is improvement, but now it smells bad and we suspect that's the battery...

3. This was not a very restful weekend for us...but it's a long story that I don't feel like telling here.

Whew. This is just a rough point for us. I could tell several more stories...of the bad business decision I made when I didn't get anything in writing from a girl who wanted us to make some clothes for her, and now has moved and lost interest completely and doesn't want to pay for them...of the cold symptoms Hannah can't get rid of that I guess must be allergies...of the lack of Christmas money...of my concern for the election...of Nick's friend who is moving back where his parents live this week after his wife left him... What can I say?

One thing I can say: my hope is in God. I learned some things this summer about what God thinks about me, and about what He promises. Today, I'll be mostly staying off the computer, and staying immersed in worship, prayer and truth from the Word. (In between piano lessons) :) Pray for us, if you think of it. We need strength and wisdom.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

More pics

Audrey refusing to have her picture taken. ;)

The girls with my sister Amy - who is 17 and still LOVES going trick-or-treating with her friends. :)

Our small group met up at church, which was so nice! In the midst of the hysteria, friends! :) (Robby and Joanna got there right after this and I'm so sad they're not in the picture! We had to take it quick before we lost all the kiddos!)
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The Requisit Halloween Pictures

My tender-headed Hannah actually let me put a bun in her hair!

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