Sunday, November 8, 2015

Being Thankful :0)

It is November and the leaves are starting to fall.  I mentioned in my other entry that I LOVE fall - in some ways this is a sad part for me.  I just can't get enough of the beauty of fall.  I know it has to happen, but I will miss those vibrant colors.  However, I must say that the falling of the leaves indicates a couple of my favorite times of the year are approaching!!! Thanksgiving and Christmas!  (I am one of those nuts that would love to watch Hallmark Christmas movies in the summer - actually, they do that now!)

Anyway, I wanted to share about something, or rather someone, that I am particularly thankful for - my mom!  She has been over the years one of my favorite people.  She is one of the first people I call in good times and bad, discouraging and joyful!  She and I, since 2001, have been attending Women of Faith conventions - I HIGHLY recommend going if you have never been!  This year was a special one with some of their speakers planning to not travel with WOF anymore.

We had planned over the summer to go .  She said that she wanted us to go and my dad (another person I am thankful for!) would come down and stay with my husband and the kiddos (6 more people that I am thankful for!).  If you recall from earlier entries, I am a mom of 5 and married to a great fella for almost 17 1/2 years! One of our children has some special needs, so I am a full-time caregiver to him along with all the other stuff that mommas do!  It was going to be a time of refreshing and renewing -- I was not disappointed!

A dear friend of mine said she would love to read what I learned at the convention.  It was entitled loved - THE FAREWELL TOUR.  The following are some quotes and notes (really didn't mean to rhyme LOL) from this special time with my mom and my cousin! And the following items that are from the speakers are their words.  I claim none of them as my own. ~~

These are all from Patsy Clairmont ~~

The needier you are, the greedier you are ~ God is perfected in weakness when we feel unable to do ~ God uses brokenness to heal brokenness ~ referenced this to Job ~ Feels like it is more we can bear - BUT we don't know our capacity in Christ Jesus ~ Sometimes tears are the best words ~ We are bearers of light ~ the hope of every heart ~ EXTEND GRACE! ~ Step kindly toward one another ~ Understand that God knows and understands people's behavior! ~ Rally around each other ~ Love makes a difference ~ there are others watching that need Jesus' love ~ Shine on

Sheila Walsh said to Sandi Patty in a hard time -- What do you need?

This is from Shauna Niequist  ~~

Stories are how we make sense of everything ~ Life, hope, repair, coming back from the pain ~ Leave behind the past hurts that hinder us ~ Spoke about people who had new names in the Lord: Abram, Sarai, Jacob, Simon, Saul ~ See where God is leading your life with your tears!! ~ What is your new story? ~ Relationship to end ? ~ Addiction? ~ Way of living? ~ What do you need to leave behind today so that the Lord can write a new story? Speak life and truth!  Be His hands and feet!  Her new book is Savor.

This is from Thelma Wells ~~

It doesn't matter where you've been, but it matters where you are going ~ a Booker T. Washington quote: Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome ~ There is no fear when we are in the Lord! ~ "When that little girl smiles, it is like when the sun comes out in Seattle! ~Teach others how to treat people ~ Sometimes the best thing to do is just BE!

This is from Marilyn Meberg ~~

Quoted 1 John 1:9 (one of my favorites!) "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness" ~ We sometimes experience things that aren't real ~ Our feelings make us experience things that aren't real ~ Our need of connection - He is a connecting God! Is. 49:1 ~ God has chosen me ~ Jesus came for us ~ To die for our sins ~ to reconnect us ~ Is. 59:2 sin has separated us from God ~ Why does He choose us? LOVE ~ Is. 43:3-4 ~ 1 John 1:12 power to become a child of God BELIEVE and RECEIVE ~ We are wonderful because God said so! 

This is from Luci Swindoll ~~

She wanted to do something for the Lord ~ She has sponsored 14 children for World Vision! ~ written 14 books ~ Is it hard to listen? Is it really He is speaking, wait to see if it is God and not SELF, find an element of peace (at this very moment the children are fussing, so this part if SO funny to type!) ~ Pray before meals ~ do things together ~ He will enable us to do what He wants us to do ~ Line your will up with the will of God and go for it ~ You will own money or it will own you ~ Spend, save, give, invest ~ She is 83 years old ~ Chuck Swindoll is her brother ~ Don't fail to live your life ~ Don't wait to have enough money ~ George Washington Carver quote How far you go in life depends on your being tender with the young, compassionate with the aged, sympathetic with the striving and tolerant of the weak and strong.  Because some day in your life you will have been all of these ~ Changing time flies across man's face ~ Ask for understanding ` facing dilemma and problem, it is good to know as much as possible to cope ~ You may not see the end, but we can say to Him give me courage, ability, and understanding.  You are in charge.  You have not because you ask not! ~ You only have one life;  live it to the fullest ~

Sandi Patty sang with her husband and some of their children!  It was AWESOME!  She also sang, "I Am Loved," by Bill and Gloria Gaither.

We also got to hear this fantastic group, Building 429.  As always, I end with a song.  Since I love both of these songs by this group and they minister to me, I am putting them on here (and I apologize ahead of time if this music isn't your cup of tea!  If you don't want to listen to "peppy" Christian music, don't click the link.  It doesn't hurt my feelings at all :0). This first one is Where I Belong and the second one is We Won't Be Shaken.  Both songs touch me deeply!

Anyway, dear friend, thank you for taking time to read this little blog.  It is really my thoughts and feelings.  I am thankful for you!  I know I am not a big-time writer, but I get joy out of knowing that someone somewhere is blessed by the words that the Lord gives me!

Find rest, peace, joy and thankfulness this Thanksgiving!  And eat turkey, dressing, gravy, crescent rolls, deviled eggs, green bean casserole, pumpkin pie, maybe even a pumpkin cheesecake!  
Enjoy and Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Love, Blessings and {{hugs}}!

Monday, October 5, 2015

  You ever have one of those days that you are just tired - I mean, pardon my expression, but STINKIN' TIRED!  And then you take it out on the ones that you love? Well, I did that this morning.  I was tired and yelled at my precious kiddos.  I know that I am not, nor will I ever be, the only one who has ever done that.  But it makes me feel really badly about myself -- like, good grief!
  If you have ever had that experience, and if you haven't you will - take heart.  I just texted a friend about what I did.  Man is confession good for the soul but makes you cry :0)  Anyway, she said the sweetest thing -- there is grace and you can always start over!  AMEN and praise the Lord.
  I think that my problem is that I let my negative thoughts toward myself get the better of me.  I allow that area of my brain take over and don't think loving thoughts toward myself.  Let me be brutally honest - I have a pity party for one!  There, I said it!  It is true.  I feel sorry for myself.
  Today, however, I looked up online about online Bible studies - I am home alot and really miss Bible study time with other believers.  So, I looked up Liz Curtis Higgs - An Encourager® website.  It just hit my square in the face.  I not only was not being nice to my little kiddos, but I wasn't being nice to myself.  I just have to, as my mom says, "Get a grip tater chip!"  
  From there I went to post this on facebook.  I went on and got it posted.  Then, as I am sure everyone does, I started to look at other people's statuses.  I read about someone celebrating 49 years of marriage -- AWESOME!  Then I looked where a friend, who had just been in the hospital for several months, was sharing her struggle with an area of recovery.  It made me think how I wallow in my little bit of frustration and hard times, and yet here was someone who was really having it hard. It made me ashamed of myself.  
  As I thought about my being unkind to my children and myself, I immediately felt saddened.  As I thought about what I had read and shared, a song and verse came to my mind!

Psalm 42:5King James Version (KJV)

Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance
So, now that I have shared this struggle with you, I hope that the words and song that lifted me has encouraged and lifted you up.  I know that the Lord is with me - I physically just get tired.  Praise the Lord, as my dear friend shared, I can START OVER!  Thankfully my children are gracious and forgive me, too!  Enjoy the song, verse, and a lovely day!

Blessings, {{Hugs}}, and Love!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

  Well, it has been a bit since I have posted, so here I am!  Today is the first day - official - FALL!  I know it means that cooler weather will be here - THANK GOODNESS!!!  It means color will replace the green.  Smoke scents will fill the air - pumpkins, cinnamon, those unusual gourds!  Falling leaves and raking them into piles only to spread them back out because little ones, and big ones, jump and play.

  Fall also makes me think of times of being in school.  I was one of those children that LOVED school.  I guess that is part of why I became a teacher.  Now that I am home taking care of and teaching my children, fall involves different things other than school.  In our home we enjoy fires - in our woodburning stove or a fire pit outside.  It is fun to get together with family and friends to enjoy that time around the fire.

  It seems like to me that we get so busy and stay running full force.  Then all of a sudden, a fire gets built, you roast weenies and marshmallows, then sit back with a cup of coffee from that fire - RELAXATION takes over.  I know for me that is one of the things that I can't wait to have.  The first time we gather outside in the cool fall air and enjoy our quiet time is one of the things I enjoy about this season.

  The Lord loves it when we do these things.  I mean He did design us for work - to work hard.  He also took a day to rest.  In writing this, I do a little self-examination of my Sabbath.  I don't always take that day to rest like I should.  It is like I am so programmed to go-go-go that I have a hard time of stopping.  It is almost like I think it is wrong for me to stop.  This is an area that I am definitely going to work on!!  The Lord only expects the work of 6 days and then a time for rest and worship.  I have the worship part down - rest is the next part.

  I hope this time of year is a good one for you.  Take time to enjoy the sites, sounds, smells, tastes, and touches of fall.  I know for our family we are getting geared up for our fire times and our trips to see the leaves -- yes, we are some of those "Leaf People!"  

  I always leave you with a song.  This one is from one of my favorite movies "Sense and Sensibility."  It is so pretty - warning, it is an instrumental with piano and some flute and I'm sure violin.  It is relaxing to me, and that is why I am choosing it.  Enjoy!!

  Take time to relax and I will too!  Happy Fall to you out there :0)

Love, {{HUGS}}, and Blessings!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

August Update

Wow!  Another month has come and is almost gone!  In our home the month of August is like one big party month!  We start with Savannah's - our oldest who has turned the big 1-3.  Yes, we are officially parents of a teenager :0)  Sarah's is at the end of the month and is 8.  I love our birthday celebrations.  They are full of family, friends, and fun.

This month is also a start for many of school.  I now have all five in school.  Two in Christian school, one in public school and two homeschooling.  So far it is going okay.  I don't really enjoy the early hours, but I think we have gotten better about is called GOING TO BED at a decent hour.  Sadly, I have given up watching Jimmy Fallon through the week.  I can stay up on Friday nights to catch his "Thank you notes" segment.  Other than that is early to bed early to rise - which I posted this one time before - it causes a struggle within me.  So far my morning girl is beating out my nightowl girl  LOL!

I did find out this summer that I have sleep apnea.  No wonder I have been so tired all the time!  My husband has been asking me for the last 13 years to get a sleep study done.  So, I did and there you go.  I wish I had been able to take a picture of me the night I slept with the cpap machine. I had so many wires on!  The next morning I felt pretty good.  I could tell a difference in my rest.  I can't wait to see what it is going to do for me and my energy level!

Let's see, we have been in school for almost two weeks.  It is going pretty well.  One thing that we are doing is Savannah is working on her SC State Project.  I am guiding her, but she is finding the information and the pictures.  Later next month, we are getting to go to the beach!!!  I hope we will get to take her to Charleston so she can see some of the things that she is studying.

I was looking at a perpetual calendar that a dear friend - Gaile Adams - gave to me my first year as a teacher.  I came across a couple of thoughts that I would like to share with you - These are by Gloria Gaither --

"We deal with reality at two points in our lives - birth and death.  If only we could always live our days with as clear a vision of the things that matter as we do at those two times."

"I have the responsibility and joy of becoming more and more aware of the eternity in every moment.  The most important things in our lives right now last forever."

Two heavy statements for this mother of 5 to digest.  I am responsible along with my husband to teach our children the way they should go.  Of what REALLY matters.  Although I am not teaching all of them throughout the day and am getting some help, I AM the one that needs to get across to them the important, forever things that matter!  I am praying for myself as I know some of you do, that the Lord will help me in this journey to do just that!

Well, I know that I always end with a song, so I am going to post this song - I love it and know it will bless you, too.  It is the song Where My Feet May Fail.

Love, Blessings, and {{Hugs}},


Thursday, July 23, 2015

Neat Art Idea - Gift Idea, Too!


I was wanting to make something neat for Benson that I had seen on pinterest --

this neat handprint art project!

Well, we looked at the kids' handprints and my handprint and Benson's.  It was no problem with Benson's because his hand was bigger than everyone else's!  Now mine was a different story!

My oldest daughter's hand was bigger than mine. So I thought about another thing.  I could take all of our hands and put them on a 12x12 paper and make a wreath.

I let the family members pick out their paper and then traced their hand on the paper and cut it out.  I chose a neutral background for the wreath of hands.
I didn't know what to do next - I thought about using more scrapbooking paper. Then I remembered I had saved some Thomas Kinkade calendars.  I chose four calendar pages from the four seasons.  I taped them together on the back of the pages.  I flipped over the calendar and glued the wreath of hands onto the front (below) ~

So now that was done, I thought what was I going to put this on?  Then I remembered that we had gotten a new air conditioning unit for the window!  The box lid was about a 3 ft. x 3 ft. size! Perfect for my now larger picture!  

(below ~)

This project had really grown from a little 12"x12" to a giant 3'x3' size!

I was trying to think of a background for around the picture.  I thought about more paper, but then I got to thinking about our scrapbag we have for cleaning cloths. We had cut up denim to use for cleaning, and they made the perfect background!

So I took the scraps and glued them around the edges.  That was easy enough! (right ~)

The next step was to glue the giant picture on top of the denim border.


The last step was to take this and seal it with some mod podge.  I am so excited to have finished a project from start to finish!  I am notorious for beginning things and not finishing them -- I am like a lot of people where they see an idea on pinterest, pin it, and then not do it!  I am going to try to do a bit better with things - I can do it :)  What is it Philippians 4:13 says, "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me!"

Well, my friends, you can, too!  Look at things that you really want to do and make a plan to accomplish them.  My husband has said to me that we really make time to do the things that we REALLY want to do!  The Lord wants us while we are here to do things that we want to accomplish while in all of it bringing glory to Him :0)

I hope you enjoyed seeing something that I was able to get done with His help!  I am looking forward to having Benson hang it up -- I am NOT good at hanging things!  

I am leaving you with a song that makes me happy when I hear it.  It reminds me of what our homes should be filled with and what I wanted to depict with my art project for Benson.  The Love of Jesus and the Love in our family!!  Enjoy this song! :0)

Love, blessings and {{hugs}}!!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Baby Shower!!!

Nothing is sweeter than getting together with some good friends and precious family and have a baby shower!  That is just what I got to do a couple of weeks ago.  We had a sweet time of fellowship, food, games, and fun!

I thought I would share a few pictures of what we did.  Sometimes it helps get your creative juices flowing when you see what someone else did - kind of like a starting off point!

Here is - as Sandra Lee (I think that is her name!) would call it a "Table Scape" - 

My sisters-in-law and mother-in-law had more to doing the layout of this than I did!!

We had an existing tablecloth and flower arrangement, so that was very helpful.  A simple vellum-type balloon was attached to it.

Some pretty dishes, including an antique punch bowl as seen below, followed by some gold foil trays, make this shower treats table so pretty - easy, but pretty!

We had cupcakes instead of the traditional sheet cake.  My mother-in-law and one of my nieces made and decorated the cupcakes.  They used a strawberry and red velvet cake mixes.  They used ready-made strawberry icing and sprinkles.  They took an idea off of pinterest to make the candy pacifiers.  They were really cute, tasty and didn't cost a whole lot of money!

My sister-in-law, who is having the baby, had an idea that she saw for the cutest fruit bowl!  This was truly a family effort!  My father-in-law along with a couple of my sister-in-laws carved the watermelon.  The rest of us cut vegetables for the veggie tray along with the fruit to make the baby in the carriage.  I wish I had videotaped it, but since I didn't, I can give you this link!  Now ours is a little different in design, but you can get the idea!  We used a 1/2 a cantaloupe for the head.  One thing we did a little differently is we took 1/2 a grape and 1/2 a blueberry and made the eyes.  We used smaller pieces of cantaloupe for the nose and ears. Our hair bow is made from pineapple and a blueberry.  Make a hole for the mouth and put a real pacifier in it!  TOO CUTE!  The momma-to-be arranged the fruit to look like a blanket.  The rest of the fruit was arranged on the bottom of the carriage.  The outside of the carriage had an orange slice for the wheel and a half a grape for the hub.  One of my sister-in-laws had a hair bow with a flower that she attached to the outside to make the carriage complete!  I think it is the CUTEST thing I have ever seen!!  

To accompany the fruit, we had some wonderful dip! Our fruit dip was made from a jar of marshmallow cream and a block of cream cheese - we added a little red food coloring to make it pink.  Along with all the other foods, we had chips and store-bought dip.  We also had a veggie tray.  I know that a lot of people do everything homemade and over the top, but I have found with this experience, it can be simpler!

It is always so much fun to get together and celebrate a new life!  I am so excited to meet my new niece!  It is such a blessing to be a part of this family!  My husband is one of six children!  All of us have had children which is going to soon total 18 grandchildren for my in-laws!!!  WOW! What a blessing and a heritage!  Teaching each of the children about Jesus and sharing Him and His saving grace with others is going to impact our area!  We have 18 more children that the Lord is going to use to bring more people to Him!!

I love to end my posts with a song, so I am going to end it with one of my all time favorites!  I think about this song a lot with our children but especially with our girls!  Give your children butterfly kisses as often as you can because time goes by so quickly!!  (warning ~~~ You will cry :)

Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to have 5 sweet little ones to give butterfly kisses!  Prayers for my sweet sister-in-law as she carries and delivers her little girl!  In Jesus' name I pray!  Amen!!!

Love, blessings, and {{hugs}},

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Father's Day!

  The history of Father's Day is very interesting indeed.  In 1909 one lady tried to start it as a holiday in Fairmont, West Virginia, in a way to honor 361 men, 250 of them fathers, who had lost their lives in a tragic mining accident.  Due to so many other activities and celebrations of July 4th, the holiday did not get the recognition it needed.  Just a year later, another young lady in Spokane, Washington, wanted to honor her father, a Civil War veteran, named William Jackson Smart.  She wanted to honor him for his raising her and her 5 siblings ALONE!  A single dad of six!  Imagine that!  She spoke to her minister about a special service recognizing fathers.  He was unable to do that the first Sunday of June, which was her father's birthday.  He planned to hold a special service the third Sunday in June.  Other ministers heard of his idea and followed in suit. 
  The actual holiday was not made official until 1972!  I looked this information up, as usual, online.  This is on this site Father's Day - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  It is really interesting to read the evolution of this idea into the actual holiday.  It took quite a bit of time and several people to get it officially recognized!
  In my life I have had the privilege to have my dad, my father-in-law, and my sweet husband, Benson.  Each one of these men has meant a great deal to me in the area of Father's Day!
  My Dad has taught us so much over the years.  My Dad was raised by his grandparents the majority of his life.  He has 3 sisters and 1 brother.  He was raised on a farm in North Carolina.  He had a lot of experiences with animals and gardens. He went on after high school to graduate from Kernersville Wesleyan College.  It was there he met my mom!  He had a church for a space of time, but he had started having seizures, so he had to step down.
  He received an opportunity to head up the custodial department at First Wesleyan Church in High Point, NC.  The church was a wonderful, and still is, influence in his life - eventually all of our family's lives.  He soon went on the Wesleyan Daycare, which turned into a daycare and an elementary school.  As the school grew into a birth to 12th grade education center, my father's job grew, too!  He was over a big staff. Not only was he doing that job, but he was working alongside my mom raising my brother and me.  At one point in our family, we were helping with my dad's different cleaning jobs.  He cleaned five different places!  We learned a lot about working hard but having fun as a family.
  In spite of innumerable hours of work, he still found time to worship - to make sure that our family attended church.  We were one of those families that went to everything at the church.  My dad rarely missed a service - he would have to be truly ill to miss services and Sunday School!  We even went to Wednesday night church.  To this day my dad still preaches once a month to some retirement and nursing homes! What a privilege it has been to have been raised in the home of a man of God!
  While my dad was growing up in North Carolina, my future father-in-law was being raised in a Christian home in South Carolina.  He was raised in a home with his 2 sisters and 1 brother.  He went on to finish up school and was called into the ministry.  He met and married his sweet wife early on in life at the tender ages of 19 and 16.  They had together 6 children - 4 girls and 2 boys.  One of those boys became my precious husband.  
  He and his wife together have ministered not only in a church but a Christian school, too. They have taught so many children over the years!  He  has such a sweet spirit, too.  He has a kind heart and a love that reaches out to everyone.  He, like my dad, worked a lot.  He was and still is what you call a bi-vocational pastor.  He has worked along side his wife, too, in raising their children. What is so neat is that his family has soon to be 18 grandchildren!  Our family get-togethers are outstanding!  He has blessed my life in so many ways!  I have been so thankful for his influence in my life, my husband's life and our children's lives!  What a privilege to have a man of God for my Father-in-law!
  Lastly, my sweet Mr. Benson!  He has been my sweetheart for going on 19 years!  We met through his sister in 1996 - another post for another time!  I want to say that he is such a wonderful provider, father, friend and husband.  Our 5 children have a wonderful person in Benson.  He has a patience with them but won't let them get away with things.  He will call them on things, but he will hug and love on them, too.
  He is the type of father to them that takes them to have fun and learn something. He will patiently teach them about how and why to do something.  He loves to take them to our garden and show them things up there - how to plow, plant, weed, harvest. He also enjoys watching movies with them.  One thing that he has in common with his father and my father, which is one of the most IMPORTANT qualities that I believe a husband should have, is his love for Jesus.  He unashamedly shows that he is a Christian.  He has standards and wants them for our family.  He makes certain that our family is at church every time we are supposed to be.  The only times he ever misses is sickness or if he works too late on Wednesday night.  He is a dedicated man, and I am ever so thankful the Lord gave him to me!  What a privilege it is to have him not only as my husband but as the father of our children!
  I am switching over to red to honor my dad.  He is a die-hard Redskins fan and loves the color red!  I love this songTwila Paris & Steven Curtis Chapman - Faithful Friend - YouTube . It always makes me think of Father's Day.  I pray that as this Father's Day comes that you will remember you father with love and admiration.  If you have lost your father, I am so sorry for that loss!  What a blessing it is to have father's in our lives!!  Happy Father's Day to my dad, father-in-law, and husband!  And to all of you fathers out there - blessings!!

Love, {{hugs}} and blessings!

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Happy Mother's Day!

  Mother's Day is a special holiday that dates back to, of course, the Greeks and Romans!  It seems like there are always one of these two people groups involved in holiday histories!  Anyway, I read a little bit on this on the History Channel website, and I find the story pretty interesting!
  Turns out the lady who wanted to have Mother's Day recognized as a holiday in America fought for part of her life to have it renounced as a holiday.  Quick story -- she had started a group where the ladies got together to learn to properly care for their children.  It was seen as a way of peace-making seeing that the time period was near the time before, during and after the Civil War.  The ladies hoped their coming together from both the Union and the Confederate states would promote that sense of peace and reconciliation!  Well, as usual, the card, flower, and candy industries wanted their "cut."  So, the commercialization of the holiday began.  This is what caused the founder of this holiday to fight against it.  If you get a chance, read a little more about it!  Very interesting information!
  We, as a country, still honor mother's today.  I want to honor a couple of mothers in my post - my mom and my mother-in-law.  Both have made a mark on my life and influenced me in ways in which I am eternally grateful!
  My mom is from Ohio.  In the late 60's she moved down to North Carolina to go to college.  She always joked that some of the girls went to get their "Mrs." degrees!  She attended college for two years, met my dad, and got married in 1970.  My brother and I came along in 1973 and 1975.  As my father has pointed out for years, that is exactly 18 months, 3 weeks and a day apart in our birthdays!  My mom had her hands full with two little kiddos so close in age!
  She stayed home with us for a period of time and then went back to work - that time in history was hard financially!  My mom and my dad both worked so that they could care for us and we could attend a Christian school.  That was very important to them - I am beyond thankful for their generous giving!  As time went on, my brother and I graduated and moved on to having families of our own.  I am sure that I can speak for him when I say we were so blessed - still are so blessed - to have our mom!
  She is the type that if you have a prayer need - she is on it!  I always tell her when to pray for me and things that others are dealing with.  She is in the Word!  She has such a wonderful way to recall scriptures for certain things that I might be dealing with.  She is SELFLESS if there ever has been one!  She has driven countless miles to get me somewhere while in school, to get me to college, to get me moved to my home in SC, to come to baby deliveries, anytime that I needed her!  She sings and lifts up the name of the Lord whenever I talk with her.  She truly exemplifies this verse, Ephesians 5:8 King James Version (KJV) For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:.  That is something she always talks about - people having light on things and to live out life so that others will see the light of Jesus in us! I honor her for all that she is through the Lord!  
  My mother-in-law is a woman of the scriptures.  She strives to read her Bible through in a year - I know she has every year that I have known her, I am pretty sure.  She knows her scripture and can share a wealth of knowledge about many subjects.  Over her many years of raising 6 children, being a pastor's wife, taking care of other children (some of her 17 grandchildren), teaching other people's children, she has also finished her Bachelor's and Master's degrees. 
  She is one person that I see as having a patience like Job.  I can be around her when there are a million things going on, and she stays level-headed.  I am striving for that!! She, like my mom, has been at every baby delivery.  With her being a few minutes away, she has often ridden with us to the hospital.  She delivered all her 6 children naturally, so that was a benefit for me with my first three (the last two were c-section).
  She loves life - everything is fascinating to her.  She says that she thinks all jobs look interesting to her!  She is a fierce game player, too!  She is currently beating me in that game "Words With Friends."  She enjoys talking, praying, reading, teaching...the list goes on!  I am so thankful that I can call her my friend - I've often told people that I can't relate to the Mother-in-law jokes.  She is someone that has been with me through tragic times and joyous times!  I am so thankful for her in one more way - she gave birth, raised, and then gave me one of her children, my sweet husband, Benson.  For that I can never repay her!  I honor her this Mother's Day!
  I know this has been lengthy, and I can write more, but I want to close this out, as I have always done, with a song...Prayer Warrior (and, yes, I got a laugh out if the singers' big hair!).
  So, to my mom and mother-in-law, I wish you both a Happy Mother's Day!  I Love You Both So very Much!!!  To all of you out there - Happy Mother's Day!  May you feel loved and special on this day!!!

Love, {{HUGS}}, and Blessings!

Friday, April 3, 2015

Image result for pictures of the cross  Today is a day of both sadness and joy in the lives of Christians everywhere.  Good Friday is the day when Jesus was beaten, bruised, rejected, torn, and ultimately hung on a cross to suffer, bleed, and die.  The ones who did not love Him, more or less hated Him, were glad to see this day come.  His mother, family and friends sobbed uncontrollably that day, I am sure!  They watched as their innocent Loved One was beyond cruelly treated.
  Why did this have to happen? Jesus came into this world with one task, and one task only -- to ultimately die on the cross to bridge that gap that separated us from God.  It was a horrible death - just horrible.  I have heard pastors over the years described the things were taking place in His body as he was dying on that cross.  It tears my heart to know that while He was on that tree for you and for me that He saw me.  He saw me in my angry state, my pitiful condition - my times when I wallow in that.  He saw me when I was at my lowest.  The good, the bad, the ugly!  He saw me when I was going to make choices that He knew, that I knew, were wrong.  He saw me and He loved me and He saved me.
  Now this saving me doesn't make me perfect.  But do you know that every time - and I mean EVERYTIME that I do something wrong, I am pricked in my heart, in my conscience.  It says to me, "Hey, girl, you better get that straightened out!"  Then when I am in a sad state - the crying and asking of forgiveness, I feel it.  I feel that LOVE, that FORGIVENESS.  I sometimes can almost feel those loving arms wrapping around me.  In those times I KNOW that I am loved, saved, and sealed.
  I don't get myself where I stay sad at the cross.  For the cross had to happen so that the empty grave could occur.  You see, Jesus was so powerful - is so powerful - that He can conquer anything!
Image result for pictures of the empty tomb
He did it!  He conquered death and the grave and our sin and Satan!  All we have to do is accept that and then live out our days so that people can see that there is something different about us.

  As you celebrate Easter Sunday, celebrate the cross but live in the empty grave!  He Lives!!  He is here and waiting for those who haven't asked Him to come into their hearts.  I love Jesus and I am so thankful for His salvation gift!!  Here is a song  to end this post.  Enjoy it and remember that He loves you so very much :0)  

Blessings, {{Hugs}} and LOVE Always!

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

St. Patrick's Day and a Blessing!

  We have Irish heritage in our family.  I think of that especially on St. Patrick's Day.  I don't know the background of this holiday, so as usual, I have looked it up.  (fyi - I'm listening to Rod Stewart singing "Forever Young" while typing this :)  
  This date is the traditional date on which Saint Patrick died.  It is a recognized day for which to commemorate Saint Patrick and the arrival of Christianity in Ireland.  It is said that he used the shamrock to explain the Trinity!!  As a homeschooler I think that is a pretty neat thing -- those things are all over in the spring/summer!!  Anyway, St. Patrick's Day is a time where Lenten restrictions are lifted for that day.  Celebrations are held all over and recognized by many denominations.  For several years now there have been many celebrations that last for several days.  I have gotten this information from this website.  It is an interesting read - I will take time today to let the kids listen to this. As a  Christian, I think it is always good to tell our children of those in the past that have made strides to tell others about Jesus!
  I can't post this, though, without sharing a blessing.  Sully, as some of you know, doesn't walk - he can take steps with lots of assistance or a walker with wheels and a seat.  In his therapy he has just started practicing pushing a wheelchair around by himself.  It surprises me, and I am so excited to see this major progression!!  I am including a video of him in his therapy.  I hope it will bless you as it has blessed us.  Click on this link

  As usual I like to end with a song entitled  "Forever Young"  While this is not an Irish blessing, I really love the lyrics.  It is one of my favorite songs :0)

May the good Lord be with you down every road you roam.
And may sunshine and happiness surround you when you're far from home.
And my you grow to be proud, dignified and true.
And do unto others as you'd have done to you.
Be courageous and be brave.
And in my heart you'll always stay
Forever young. (Forever young)
Forever young. (Forever young)
May good fortune be with you, may your guiding light be strong,
Build a stairway to heaven with a prince or a vagabond.
And may you never love in vain.
And in my heart you will remain
Forever young. (Forever young)
Forever young. (Forever young)
Forever young. Forever young
And when you fin'lly fly away, I'll be hoping that I served you well.
For all the wisdom of a lifetime, no one can ever tell.
But whatever road you choose, I'm right behind you win or lose,
Forever young. (Forever young)
Forever young. (Forever young)
Forever young. Forever young
For forever young

Image result for Irish Blessings

As always, {{hugs}}, love, and Blessings!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Sarah's Completed Project :0)

I had posted earlier that we were going to do a project on the days of Creation.  I had posted an idea that I saw on Pinterest.  I showed the idea to Sarah, and we came up with a book.  We did our activity a little differently than the one I had seen.  She and I talked about the days. I wrote down what she said, and she copied it.  She drew the numbers above the sentences.  We looked together through magazines for pictures that would go with what was created on that day.  Sarah then took her pictures and made kind of like a collage on the number.

It was fun and not too hard - except for the extra help from our 3 year-old!  LOL!  I would love to do something like that again.  It was a good first experience with notebooking.  I think I will even try this with my older daughter with some of her studies!

As usual I try to find a little song to go along with the post.  This is a cute little song that I came across that would be fun to learn if you are studying the days of Creation.

Hope you enjoy looking at the pictures and hope you have a blessed rest 
of the day!

Love, Blessings, and {{hugs}}!!
:0)Chandra and Sarah





Sunday, February 22, 2015

Our Memorable 2015 Valentine's Day


  A typical Valentine's for most is to go out for dinner, a movie and have some flowers and candy.  Ours had the dinner and candy, but after that we went to our friends' house and practiced for a singing that we would have at our church.  It was late when we got home.  As we went up our hill, we came upon a bunch of emergency vehicles, fire and smoke.
  The first thing I thought was, "Oh Lord!  Our home is on fire!  Bear is in the bathroom!  Our things are gone!"  When we got over the hill, we were so glad to see that we were not losing our home.  Due to the high winds that had been blowing that day, a power line had come down and caused a brush fire.  That fire burned 6 acres! 
  We safely got into the house and began to find candles and flashlights.  We had to settle everyone in as best as we could - remember we have 5 children and that night had a friend spending the night :0).  We were too excited to get to sleep.  We took pictures and video of the firefighters and the fire.  It got really exciting when they started setting another fire to put out that fire.  The wind picked up and embers flew over into our yard.  At one point the firemen came over looking into our yard.  I was so glad that we didn't have to leave - it meant that we were safe.
  Everyone went on to bed, but I couldn't.  I wanted to stay awake and watch - I wanted to make sure the fire went out and that those men were safely on their way home or to the fire station.  I was amazed at how the fire got so big and then in no time went out, as if there had never been a fire at all.
  I wanted to take time to publicly thank our firefighters in Long Creek and also others who responded and the neighbor who called!  To think of what a loss our family and our neighbors could have suffered - it is too much!  The Lord is so good to our family and took care of everyone that night!!  I am SO glad that we have the blessing of these people!  I came across a song that honors firefighters from around the country. I am playing this on the "blog" to honor those men who were there that night for us.  I also came across this poem, "So God Made a Fireman."  I  got teared-up with both. These people do so much!  I hope that my words honor them.Firefighters Tribute: So God made a Fireman - YouTube   The Firefighter Song - Paul Cummings (Original Version 2009) - YouTube

Blessings, {{hugs}} and LOVE!!!

 p.s.  I am putting some pictures on here of that night - keep in mind this is across the street from inside our house.  They are really neat and scary at the same time.  I am so glad the Lord has called some to serve as firefighters!














Friday, February 13, 2015

Love Love Love!

  Well, another Valentine's Day is approaching.  Some people see it as a conspiracy of the candy, card, flower industries.  I never have looked into what the history is behind this special day.  All I know is that from the moment I realized that I got candy and cards, I LOVED that day.
  I just read a little on the subject.  The pagan side of it is just gross - I definitely don't like the information there!  The saint side of it is interesting.  There were two thoughts on this - one that the person was trying to free Christians.  This story also mentioned that the Saint Valentine may have fallen in love with one of the people he rescued.  The second story was one where the Saint helped people get married even though Emperor Claudius II said that young men were not to marry - made it a law!  Very interesting!
  I didn't know about the ideas behind Valentine's Day.  My thoughts on it are ones of love toward my family and friends.  I can see how some who are in the Catholic Church and have deep feelings toward the tradition can be very involved with this holiday.  My personal feelings about the pagan side is, well, it is just unnecessary!  And as usual, the American culture of "Let's Blow Everything Out Of Proportion" has its place.
  I must admit that I love getting and giving something from and to my sweetheart and children on this day.  It is sweet to be remembered -- LOVE that song!  I have to be careful, though, and not let my expectations get out of control.  I have enjoyed the handmade cards, little box of chocolates, and maybe a little rose.
  My husband works very hard.  He loves me, and I know this full well. Benson is so good to us, and I know that we are blessed.  I am thankful for my husband, my best friend.  He knows my good side and my bad side. He encourages me to be my best - sometimes that is hard to hear when we aren't being our best!  I know that the Lord made him just for me.  I look forward to our coffee time in the morning and our tea time in the evening.  One of my favorite things that he does for me - holds my hand in church.  Ok, and another is that he holds me tightly when I am falling apart.
  Some of my friends have not found their bookend.  These holidays are hard for them.  I have been there and remember the sad feeling in my heart.  I pray for them and ask the Lord to help them while they wait.  I pray for them that the Lord will prepare and send them the right helpmeet for their life!
  Having a sweetheart during this time of year is fun, oh yes!  But, I am SO glad that I have my First Love -- Jesus.  He is my friend, my faithful minister.  I have been through many things with Him.  I am thankful that I have this perfect love from Him - Thank the Lord that Benson is likeminded and we can serve Jesus together.
  This Valentine's Day as you buy gifts for your loved ones as well as receive, please think about our Love from Jesus - thank Him extra for what He did for us.  Such Love, Such Wondrous Love!  Such Love!  Such Wondrous Love!  That God would love a sinner such as I!  How wonderful is love like this!!

  While I would love to end with this precious hymn, I love this song "'Tis Sweet to be Remembered."  Flatt & Scruggs, 'Tis Sweet to Be Remembered - YouTube
HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY!!! and may you feel loved!

Blessings, Love, and {{Hugs}},