Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Monday, February 25, 2008
It's so frustrating. I think we will not be doing this next year. Now, moving on...
I love our house and I am enjoying trying to make it nice and comfortable for my family without spending $50,000. I have to say, I'm having trouble watching HGTV these days. After reading this post at Boomama's and seeing the pictures of the homes in Africa that she got to see....I have no patience for people who can spend $50,000 re-doing their KITCHEN!!!! If it's clean and organized...and working...isn't that enough? It really made me sick the other night because the "before" kitchen, in my opinion, was cute. And what could I do with $50,000? Better yet, what could other folks do with that money?
I don't know...it's just perspective. Our house is 40 years old. It's not big by most American standards. But if my family is safe, things are clean and tidy, and I have tried to make it look nice--that's enough. I know that some people work hard for their money and deserve to spend it like they want...right? I'm just saying I couldn't spend my money that way. Things of this earth don't matter that much.
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. Matt. 6:19-20
If your budget is like, $0, what can you do to make a nice home? Here are some ideas:
1. De-clutter. Simple looks nicer.
2. Clean. At least you can have a healthy home!
3. Light candles.
4. Put up pictures of your smiling children.
5. Put those flowers your children picked in a vase.
6. Have quilts and blankets available for cuddling up in.
7. Open the blinds/shades/windows. Let some sunlight and fresh air in.
8. Turn old sheets into curtains. Even I can sew straight lines.
9. Rearrange every now and then. A new look can be so refreshing.
I know that if I think I don't have the budget to "do" a room, I just won't do anything at all. But even a clean and picked up room with something pretty set out looks better than a room that is just "waiting." When I was a teacher, I went on a few home visits with our counselor. There were homes that had no furniture---but every "bed" on the floor was made with little decorative pillows on it or a teddy bear. There were curtains in the windows and a clean glass of water for the guest. I'm just saying, you can make your home nice if you try. As wife and mother of this family, I often ask myself, "could I make a nice home out of whatever I was handed?" I think about that when we go camping and I fuss with the sleeping bags inside the tent and keep the clothes put away neatly. If all we had was something very, very humble...what could I do to make it a nice home for my family? I recognize that when I stop watching HGTV and see pictures from the other side of the world, what we have been given is very nice and is a blessing. I will take care of it and make it nice for my family.
Now I'm off to go do just that!
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Today's victim....OK guest blogger is Julie from My Life As Julie Mom. Did you know that laundry can be sculpted into modern art with very little effort? Click on over and see what I'm talking about.
Got a Keepin' It Real moment you'd like to share? E-mail me!
Thursday, February 21, 2008
and now I'm even thinking of removing this word:
because of this post. It got me thinking. I'm only proposing these changes. What do you think? Can we live without these words (concepts)?
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
I was reminded last night of all the Christian wives and mothers who are still at work wishing/hoping/praying for deliverance and a chance to be at home. I just wanted to offer this word of encouragement to them: you are already a homemaker. I have worked full-time (11 years) and I have worked part-time (2 1/2 years) and now I am home. I remember what it is like to have your interests divided. It's so hard.
The reason I was reminded of all these things was the blog I found last night. I laughed, I related...this lady stole my thoughts right out of my mind! And she also made me realize something: the change happens in our hearts first.
Long before the Lord ever brought me home, He changed my heart. What does that mean? My desires became His desires, my thoughts were on things that He felt were important. I began to understand the role of each family member in a Christian home. I began to understand the effects of feminism on our society, our families, but especially my life. My home. I began to see the joy of doing things His way. My heart was changed.
And suddenly I wasn't satisfied with our old life. I wanted out. BUT, I started where I was. I became a homemaker in the time that I did have available to me. My focus had shifted and I wanted to do a better job keeping house. I wanted to be a better wife. I wanted to be a better mom. So things were already changing at our house and I trusted the Lord to do the impossible and get me home. He did not disappoint.
But I know if He had brought me home before that change of heart...it would have been a terrible waste of time.
God is good. I am so thrilled when I read blogs like this and see how He changes the hearts of women. It is exciting! I hope it's contagious.
So Christian mom who is working but doesn't want to be? Know that I am praying for you. Put your trust in God and continue to do what you can.
Jesus looked at them and said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible." Matt. 19:26
Thursday, February 14, 2008
What about this?
Or even this?
Or would she just feel the need to post a lot of pictures to prove that she does NOT have OCD tendencies? Hmmmm.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
But I checked just before I logged on to do this and there is a thick enough book laying around. I should say it's the Bible, but there is one closer. OK, here are the directions for this meme.
- Find the nearest book and turn to page 123.
- Find the fifth sentence, and post the next 3.
Here goes. Oh man, wouldn't you know it? There is a big illustration on that page. I guess I really should try to read more books for grown ups, huh? Hmmm. What to do?
Why don't we just start counting on that page and keep going? (Don't tell. I'm breaking rules of which no one is in charge!!! Man, I live on the edge.)
"With a barrel on a sled, he drives fom tree to tree and empties the sap from the buckets into the barrel. Then he hauls it to a big iron kettle, that hangs by a chain from a cross-timber between two trees. He empties the sap into the iron kettle."
That was from Little House in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder. And I don't know about you, but I personally cannot think of another section that would discourage people from reading that book more. It's really much, much better than that, I promise.
Unless you like reading things intended for grown-ups. But I wouldn't know anything about that.
Wanna play along?
Monday, February 11, 2008
You've been warned.
I don't have enough hours in the day! We don't get "enough" school done. The laundry is never just done. The house doesn't STAY picked up. The paperwork is never up to date. I work so hard on this house and I feel like I'm losing. House: 1 Me: 0
We have Girl Scouts on Monday mornings. It's not the ideal day, I'll admit. There are a lot of other things we do sometimes during the week. They are all good things, but if we do all of them there is too much running. If we stay home all week we go stir crazy. It's hard finding the balance. I was talking to my friend Leah at Girl Scouts today. Both of us are considering not continuing scouts next year. Well, I'm certain we aren't. I haven't found it worth the time we have had to invest. Maybe paring down activities will help?
I thought de-cluttering would help and I still do. BUT, that is something I have trouble finding time to do. It's like something extra to get done while still keeping on top of all the other things I have to do.
I'm wondering today how people do all this? How do people have clean, picked up houses? How do people stay on top of everything? How do people be wives, mothers, homeschoolers, homemakers and everything? I know....you are all going to tell me that you don't stay on top of things either. But I think you do. More than me anyway. And that's just my mood today, OK?
And lastly I'd just like to say that if I really want to get something done I should get off of the computer, huh?
Whining to the masses...one of the many benefits of having a blog.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
Dishes to wash. (Just like everyday.)
Floors to sweep, mop, and vacuum. (But not until little feet are out of the way.)
Clutter to sort through. (The piles are getting higher!)
School stuff to organize. (What happened over there?)
Clothes to iron. (Can't send the family off wrinkled.)
Furniture to dust. (Before we all start sneezing.)
Bills to pay. (So they won't be late.)
Groceries to buy. (Before supper tonight.)
Menu to plan. (Before we shop.)
Sunday school lesson to plan. (Three more weeks!)
Girl Scout Cookies to pick up. (And then deliver.)
Children to be made to help with all of this. (It would be so much easier to just do it myself.)
Husband to surprise. (Hope he's happy when he sees the house!)
My hands may not be manicured. My hair might not be fancy. My "personal workout routine" involves a mop and vaccuum cleaner. But my family will be taken care of at the end of the day. I am thankful for Saturdays full of work because I am thankful to have this family and home to care for.
Now. That's a much better attitude than I woke up with! How are you spending your Saturday?
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
But then, before Sweetheart was born we moved to a NEW CITY! We were citizens of a different place for the first time in our lives.
OK, so it was less than 10 miles away. So what?
Oh, and then we moved back to our hometown last year. We are world travellers FOR SURE! (Actually, S has been to lots of places courtesy of the US Navy, but that's different.)
And this is why I am so thankful for the world wide web. A few years ago when I started questioning everything in our life...I found people from all over who had also thought through things. I found lots of different points of view to ponder. I found encouragement to do things God's way.
Frankly, sometimes S and I feel like oddballs. It feels like we are the only family in our circle of friends who think about the things we do. We sometimes feel that people just don't "get" us. But in the blogosphere, that's just not true. And I really am thankful for all of you.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
I could give an update on Little Bit's tics. She hasn't really had any for the last 2 weeks! It's so cool! I don't know if it's just gone or if it will come back. If it is going to come back, I really hope it comes back before the neurologist's appointment this month. It would be nice if they could see what we are talking about. Maybe they are just gone? Still, they have to be gone for 3 months for the diagnosis to change. I guess I really can't post about that since it's all so up in the air. Oh well.
Let's see....I could talk about the rag quilt I'm going to make! That practice quilt I made while we were out of town was so easy. I can't wait to start making the one for Little Bit's bed (AFTER I finish Sweethearts duvet cover! Sigh.) Sewing might be a good topic....hmmm. After all, I've told everyone extensively how all I can sew is squares and rectangles. I could talk about how the rag quilt is so easy that even I could do it! Kathy, Jeff's wife gave such good directions. Oh, and it was so funny how I asked a dumb question and she made a whole post out of it! Now my lack of practical math skills are out there for the whole internet to see! :) I am so visual it's pathetic. My sister helped me figure out how to make that duvet cover for Sweetheart. Then she wrote out the directions for me. But was that enough? NO! She also had to sew me a miniature one so I could "see" what she was talking about. It's no wonder I can't figure out yardages.
I could ask all my homeschooling friends out there to give my friend Jennifer some advice. She and her husband up and made the plunge and they will begin homeschooling their 2nd grade son TOMORROW! They made this decision over the weekend (after months, even years of considering it). I think they are so brave and of course I think they are right. He has been asking to be homeschooled for a long time now and they have finally worked through most of the concerns/excuses/reasons that so many of us worked through at one point or another. I could ask the internet to help---tips for beginning to homeschool smack dab in the middle of the year. I'm sure some of them have been there. That would be really great for Jennifer to read.
Let's see..what else? Man, I'm hungry! I need to get up and go get some cereal or something to eat. Supper was so good, but now I'm
You know what? I really don't have time to sit down at the computer anyway. I really need to be looking over what we are doing for school this week. That would be a much better use of my time.
Plus I'm hungry.
So I guess blogging can wait one more day.
(But if you have any advice for my friend, feel free to leave it in the comments!)