Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Three Lies

The World would have us believe three lies:

It cannot be simple
There are no instructions
Not everyone can succeed

How wrong they are.

The secular world goes to great lengths to convince us these are true though. There are commercials of mothers complaining about child rearing and household duties, encouragement for debt and divorce, and the greatest ever coming out of the public schools: Generation ME.

A whole generation being raised as self entitled brats.

Excuse my wording please but truly these up and coming soon to be adult frighten me.

They know nothing of the truth.

They don't know the basics
They don't know the Bible
They don't know the value of hard work

And here's what's worse---it's rubbing off on those who are already adults. Facebook has become the new breeding ground for these plagues.

The words "I can't" are seen everywhere.
Ignoring the wealth of knowledge of the Bible and the generations before us is rampant.
More status's are about TV shows than anything actually intelligent.

What are we doing to ourselves?!?

This is not what God would have for us.

Life is simple--Follow Him
There are instructions--open your Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth
Everyone can be successful--keep your focus on Him and be willing to accept His gifts!

How many opportunities are we missing because we have bought into the lies the World tells us? How much longer will we keep listening to them and saying "I can't" instead of listening to God and saying "I believe You can"?



Sunday, November 22, 2015

Where is Our Heart?

My heart is breaking writing this post but I feel it really needs to be said.

Ladies, we should not be enemies to each other. We should be the other's biggest support system and best friends. We are sisters in Christ!

Watching interactions on Facebook is just overwhelming and has many times made me want to leave or quit the internet all together. However, that wouldn't help. If we are not part of the solution then we become the problem.

I once had a fellow school mate tell me that she quit going to church because the ladies were "so cliquish and catty". My goodness ladies! What a tragedy!

This happens on Facebook every day. How many are we losing for Christ because of our emotions?

When we allow our emotions to rule, no matter the situation, we are losing moral ground and our credibility. Not to mention, respect.

The Bible praises women who are gentle, kind, meek, nurturing and loving. How often to we think on these before posting that sarcastic comment or arguing the same point for the thousandth time?

We need to develop servant's hearts ladies. Being right is so much less important than winning hearts and helping others succeed.

Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 2:3-5

Blessings on this Sunday,


Tuesday, November 17, 2015

A Dump Post

It's been a crazy last week and I have another ahead of me. I had my family in town much of this past week and my mother in law is coming this weekend. I'm in "clean all the stuffs!" mode.

To wrap up last week:

We were working in our playrooms. Someone asked how do you know what to rotate?

Do what feels right for you.

I leave out open ended toys: blocks, balls, a few dress up items, cars and play characters. Everything else--the musical instruments, stuffed animals, play sets, puzzles, etc--get packed away to play with occasionally.

For this week:

I decided to keep working in the same area so I'm cleaning my children's rooms. I know I usually have pictures, but I'm writing this post with a baby in my arms so I'll have to add those later haha!

In my life:

Some of you know I have had a very throw uppy baby. We have figured out most of her triggers now and she is feeling much better. We had a good night's sleep for the first time since she was born!

My son has been doing very well. We are back to homeschooling! We spent time yesterday learning Latin declensions and some basic French. He truly enjoys learning and spending time with mama.

My husband and I had been through some struggles, as some of you know. We have found a wonderful mentor that is counselling us and in the last week, our lives have drastically changed.

My other bit of news:

Prior to my sweet baby being born, I had a dream of starting a business. I was on track to do this but I was a little unprepared for what two children on my own will be like. I am happy to announce though that I am now working from home in my own business! This means so much to me and my family and could mean big things for this little blog in the future!

I hope you all are having a wonderful week and I'm praying for you all daily.



Monday, November 09, 2015

Preparing for Christmas Cleaning Challenge: Play Room and Toys

This week, we are cleaning play rooms and going through toys!

If you do not have a play room, take this time to still go through toys and think about where you are keeping them.

I like to go through toys well before Christmas so I know what is broken, missing or otherwise needed.

Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up.
1 Thessalonians 5:11

Ladies, begin with prayer. This area can often feel so overwhelming, especially when we are over flowing with toys!

Gather your bags and boxes to sort into. We have more categories this time: trash, donate, for another room, keep in this room and keep for rotation.

I strongly believe in rotating toys. Big toys or toys with many pieces are lovely for this! I like to keep very simple, open ended toys out regularly and pull out our castles, ride on toys, etc only occasionally.

After you sort your toys, immediately take out the trash and load your donations into the car. Then pack up your rotation toys.

Now we are on to our regular day toys.

Group your toys by type. Keep all the cars together, puzzles, books, dolls, dress up items, whatever you have sort them. Put each of these categories into separate bins, boxes, baskets or bags.

Now, make a commitment that you will train your children to only have one category out at a time. This will make clean up a breeze.

Ladies, toys and playrooms should bring joy but also should inspire creativity, education and cooperation. If you find these to be lacking, cut back on the toys. Spend time in the space with your children, watching them and encouraging them to play, work, and enjoy time together.

As with our other spaces, take a few moments to jot down notes on what you may be lacking in this space. Jot down gift ideas, organization ideas, and decor ideas. As you are out shopping, look for good deals. Spend a few minutes the night before you go out to check your list and look for coupons online. Planning ahead can save you significant money.

I hope this encourages you ladies!



Saturday, November 07, 2015

Kitchen and Pantry After Pictures

This week, instead of showing pictures of a pristine kitchen, I thought I would show you all what a Saturday really looks like for me.

I routinely make broth, bread, soup and other bulk meal items for the week on the weekends. This is what my kitchen looks like after a day of cooking and already doing one load of dishes.

I will share pretty pictures of my pantry now organized though!

Each bin hold a category of food. It is more bare right now than usual because my bulk items are not in here (I have been keeping them in the garage because they are too heavy to move).

My current categories are snacks (down on the bottom), grains and beans, and junk food up on the top.

To the right I have teas and other drinks, nuts and seeds,dried fruit and breakfast items.

In my fridge I keep drinks up on the top. We currently have a large supply of kombucha (yay sales!) and fresh juice. Our milk is kept on the door with electrolyte water.

Below this I store our left over containers on the shelf with our prepackaged items (like yogurt and some fruits) below. The large pot is my broth cooling.

At the very bottom of the door, my son stores his cups. This makes it easy for him to get a drink whenever he needs. For the same reason, I keep the snack bin on a low shelf so he can grab something if he needs (or if I am nursing and unable to assist).

I hope this encourages you ladies. It's not about perfection. It's about daily life and making that more functional so we have more time to spend on the things that really matter.



Thursday, November 05, 2015

Structuring Your Day to Focus on God--Setting a Good Foundation

The last few weeks I have been talking about focus, attitude and simple mission statements to help us stay on track.

These all sound so inspirational and great in theory, but how do we go about applying this?

Simple, good, and focused foundation.

Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it.
Matthew 7:24-27

 The start of this foundation will be structuring your day to focus on God. How might we do that?

Begin your day reading His Word and praying. I like to read Proverbs with my children every day. One chapter a day. I love having my little ones cuddle in bed with me before we begin on the day's work.

Then, get out of bed and get yourself dressed. While doing this, listening to Revive Our Hearts or Proverbs 31 can keep your heart and mind focused. 

You can set your little ones up to listen to Life at the Pond or Adventures in Odyssey while you make breakfast and get a few chores done. 

As you go through your day, turn on hymns on Pandora or elsewhere. Listen to Christmas music to get in the spirit. Your children may like Hide 'Em in Your Heart to learn Bible verses. 

The afternoon can be for learning. Just as your children are learning in their schoolwork, we need to keep learning in the Lord. Resources like Maxwell, Dave Ramsey, Embassy Institute, Focus on the Family, Answers in Genesis, Thru the Bible and Zig Ziglar may be inspirational for you. Almost all of these resources are free or very low in cost. Other great options are Titus2, No Greater Joy, Above Rubies and Doorposts.

In the evenings, commit to a personal Bible study. You can pick one from the links above, or join in this audio version at Naomi's Table.  

When your day is built around Him, everything else will fall into place. Make yourself a promise not to overbook yourself with activities so you truly have time to spend in learning and prayer. Commit to church and Bible studies. They are far more important than sports or other activities. 

I hope this encourages and inspires you ladies!