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Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Tuesday at Home

It's been a cold and rainy day here. Yesterday was almost 70 degrees and sunny; today it is only 40 degrees. It's too much of a change!

We finally put our tree up and Michael put the lights on. So pretty!! Now to add the decorations. The girls put them away last year and now I can't find any hangers. Hmmm...everything is so organized but they are nowhere to be found. Oh well! I have to run to Target so I'll pick them up.

Tomorrow night Trish and I finally get back to our Bible study! We took a few weeks off because our children were busy with rehearsals for our church's Christmas drama. We'll only have one week to meet and then we'll have to wait until 2009 since the next two Wednesdays are "Eve's". I'm looking forward to finishing up "Fear Factor" and then deciding what we want to do next!

Actually next Wednesday is one of my favorite parts of the holiday season: Christmas Eve. First we go to our candlelight service where I'm reminded once again that Jesus is the light of the world and that He came to die for my sins! After that we come home and we each get to open one gift. We usually end up playing games or watching a movie.

Tonight we Michael and Julianne get home from karate, we're going to have steak for dinner. A real treat for us! When we bought our cow in the spring (or summer, I can't remember), one of the things we got was two filet mignon. I've never had it before so this will be nice. I bought a ribeye for Julianne but, of course, she can have some of ours. Speaking of cow, ours is almost gone. We purchased 1/8 of a cow this year and we are down to two pounds of ground beef and some sirloin steaks. It has lasted quite a while but when we do it again next year, I think we're going to go for 1/4. I really enjoyed the ground beef and roasts. They were delicious and sooo much better than I can buy in the store.

Michael is on vacation until the 30th and today was Julianne's last at co-op. She returns on January 6th. I'm looking forward to lots of days at home cooking, baking, playing games and just being a family. If it would only snow.........


Saturday, December 13, 2008

Sunday Hymn

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here,
Until the Son of God appear.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, Thou Dayspring, come and cheer
Our spirit by thine advent here:
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death's dark shadows put to flight.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
And order all things, far and nigh;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And cause us in her ways to go.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!

O come, Desire of nations, bind
All peoples in one heart and mind;
Bid envy, strife and quarrels cease,
Fill all the world with heaven's peace.

Rejoice! Rejoice! Emmanuel
Shall come to thee, O Israel!
(Latin Hymn)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Changes


The temperature right now is 70 degrees and it's cloudy. Tonight we're expecting a big rain storm that will last a day or two. Tomorrow the high will only be 47 degrees. That's a big difference and I know I will feel it. Brrrrr!

I have all my Christmas cards out and ready to be worked out. I'll probably be doing that tonight while watching reruns of Lost. January will be a good month because 24 and Lost return for a new season and Fringe returns after a few weeks break. So now you know my favorite TV shows.

Speaking of TV, we are getting rid of our cable. We had already decided to do this a few weeks ago but a price increase just confirmed we were making the right decision. We got our coupons for the new devices that our TV needs in order to watch it past February 19. So once we get those purchased, we'll end the cable. One thing I will really miss is the DVR. It was sooo easy to record programs and even record more than one at the same time. I like being able to watch the shows and fast forward the commercials. Sigh.

I know I'm going to go through some withdraw because I watch more TV than I should. Total harmless stuff like House Hunters and Iron Chef America but still too much. I will miss John and Kate +8 and Storm Chasers, Bobby Flay and Ace of Cakes. Haha! Can you tell I'm having problems already??

Monday, December 08, 2008

Pressing On

A passage I've been meditating on today:

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already been made perfect, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus~Philippians 3:12-14

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Home

I have no exciting news or interesting things to post.....just daily life here at home. That is where God has called me to be and I wouldn't have it any other way.

On my weekly planner I have the word "home" (surrounded by a little cloud) on the days when I'm home during the day. I love seeing the clouds populate my planner because I know on those days I'm home for most of the time. I can get projects done, study His Word, do major cleaning and just enjoy the work the Lord has given me. What a privilege! My days consist of cleaning, laundry, cooking, homeschooling, etc. Not exciting things in the scheme of things but they are things that I can do to serve my family and in that way to "serve Him at home". It's all I've ever wanted to do! And with His grace, I hope to always remain faithful and cheerful to what He has called me to do.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Seek True Fellowship

Seek True Fellowship, Not Mere Socializing

“We have such good fellowship at our church,” she said.
“That’s great,” I replied, “but how do you know?”
“Because so many people linger after the services to talk.”

Well, what occurs between people after the service might be fellowship, but it might be mere socializing. Socializing (such as talking about the news, weather, work, or other matters) is a good part of life, but socializing is not the same as fellowship. Unbelievers can socialize; only Christians can truly fellowship. But far too often we think we’ve enjoyed the rich feast of fellowship when we’ve only snacked on sometimes tasty but spiritually empty socializing.

At its simple best, fellowship involves two or more Holy Spirit-indwelled people talking about God and the things of God. But we do this far less than we imagine. Think—when was the last time you had a spiritually stimulating conversation with another believer? And yet the Christians in the book of Acts were so devoted to fellowship with each other that in the first description of the activities of the first church only their listening to the apostles preach and teach is listed ahead of it (see Acts 2:42).

A significant part of the Lord’s ministry to us comes through others in whom He lives. And He intends for us to experience much of this comforting, encouraging, instructing, reproving, guiding, and sustaining ministry through fellowship. But if we talk with our brothers and sisters almost exclusively about things even worldlings (me: I love this word!!) can discuss and understand, we deprive ourselves of many touches from Heaven.

True fellowship seldom occurs unintentionally, especially among those who do not yet see the difference between fellowship and socializing. Enjoy socializing with other Christians, but discipline yourself to talk more about things that matter, and talk about them as though they do matter.

From "Simplify Your Spiritual Life"

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thou Hast Shewed Thy People Hard Things (Ps. 60:3)

I have always been glad that the Psalmist said to God that some things were hard. There is no mistake about it; there are hard things in life. Some beautiful pink flowers were given me this summer, and as I took them I said, "What are they?". And the answer came, "They are rock flowers; they grow and bloom only on rocks where you can see no soil." Then I thought of God's flowers growing in hard places; and I feel, somehow, that He may have a peculiar tenderness for His "rock flowers" that He may not have for His lilies and roses.--Margaret Bottome.

The tests of life are to make, not break us. Trouble may demolish a man's business but build up his character. The blow at the outward man may be the greatest blessing to the inner man. If God, then, puts or permits anything hard in our lives, be sure that the real peril, the real trouble, is what we shall lose if we flinch or rebel.--Maltbie D. Babcock.

"Heroes are forged on anvils hot with pain.
And splendid courage comes but with the test.
Some natures ripen and some natures bloom
Only on blood-wet soil, some souls prove great
Only in moments dark with death or doom."

"God gets his best soldiers out of the highlands of affliction."

(Take from Streams in the Desert/November 23)

Monday, November 24, 2008

The Simple Woman's Daybook



FOR TODAY Monday, November 23, 2008...

Outside my window...it has turned cloudy and windy after a very nice morning

I am thinking...of ways to organize our spare room

I am thankful for...a home where I have heat in the winter

From the learning rooms...I need to record grades for science

From the kitchen...I'm creating a shopping list for Thanksgiving. I already have most things, I just need to get fresh veggies, etc.

I am wearing...sweats

I am creating...embroidered pillowcases for Christmas

I am going...grocery shopping after dinner (if it's not raining)

I am reading...Streams in the Desert, my favorite devotional

I am hoping...to have this schoolroom cleaned and organized by the beginning of December

I am hearing..."Heart of Worship" on my iTunes

Around the house...candles are burning

One of my favorite things...is watching birds at my feeder

A few plans for the rest of the week: grocery shopping, making as much Thanksgiving food ahead of time as I can, spending Thursday with my family

Here is picture thought I am sharing...the view down my street while the leaves were still on the trees:


Would you like to see more posts like this or participate? Then head over to The Simple Woman's Daybook to see how!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Three Things I Learned

In my study of Fear Factor this past week, the last question was "What are the top three truths you learned from this chapter? How are you going to change as a result of what you learned?". The chapter was entitled, "Throw Off the Covers" and addressed calling the fear of man for what it is: sin.

Here's what I learned:

1. God's character never changes. When I fear man, I'm saying that I don't think He is worthy of my trust.

2. Fear of man is selfishness. "About whom are you most concerned when you fear man? You are not more concerned about the interests of others, about their good, or about the glory of God. You are being completely self-centered. And that's sin."

3. There are many ways to hide from God. Examples: staying far away from His Word, refusing to develop close friendships with godly people, keeping a full schedule and staying very busy.

Here's the changes I'm going to make as result of this study:

1. Rely on Him more and more; not just with the big problems but with the little things in my life also. He can be trusted!!!

2. Be like-minded with Christ as to putting others first. Philippians 2:3-5: Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus. Romans 12:10: Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

3. Be diligent in the area of confessing sin and in prayer so nothing hinders my fellowship and relationship with the Lord.

What have you learned lately during your Bible study?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

The Family

O Sovereign Lord,

Thou art the creator-Father of all men, for thou hast made and dost support them;
Thou art the special Father ofthose who know, love and honour thee,
who find thy yoke easy, and thy burden light,
thy work honourable,
thy commandments glorious.

But how little thy underdeserved goodness has affected me!
how imperfectly have I improved my religious privileges!
how negligent have I been in doing good to others!

I am before thee in my trespasses and sins,
have mercy on me,
and may thy goodness bring me to repentance.

Help me to hate and forsake every false way,
to be attentive to my condition and character,
to bridle my tongue,
to keep my heart with all diligence,
to watch and pray against temptation,
to mortify sin,
to be concerned for the salvation of others.

O God, I cannot endure to see the destruction of my kindred.
Let those that are united to me in tender ties
be precious in thy sight and devoted to thy glory.

Sanctify and prosper my domestic devotion,
instruction, discipline, example,
that my house may be a nursery for heaven,
my church the garden of the Lord,
enriched with trees of righteousness of thy planting,
for thy glory;
Let not those of my family who are amiable, moral, attractive,
fall short of heaven at last;
Grant that the promising appearances of a tender conscience,
soft heart, the alarms and delights of thy Word,
be not finally blotted out,
but bring forth judgment unto victory in all whom I love.

(Valley of Vision)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Simple Woman's Day Book



FOR TODAY Monday, November 17, 2008

Outside my window...the leaves are on the ground and most of the trees are bare. Winter is approaching.

I am thinking...of way to make our dollars stretch especially when it comes to Christmas gifts

I am thankful for...a job for my husband as so many are out of work

From the learning rooms...New Testament books, John Lister, vocabulary words

From the kitchen...putting together a pantry list in order to know exactly what I have and how many of each!
I am wearing...jeans, black shirt, sock and shoes

I am creating...not much at the moment

I am going...to stay home since there's no need to go anywhere
I am reading...recipes from my files

I am hoping...to glorify Him in all I do and say

I am hearing...chickadees at the bird feeder and a dog barking

Around the house...it is clean and organized since we had company all weekend!!

One of my favorite things...is lighting candles when evening comes
A few plans for the rest of the week: grocery shopping, starting on some sewing projects, conquering the schoolroom

Here is picture thought I am sharing...none right now as the computer isn't cooperating!!

Please visit The Simple Woman's Daybook to see how you can participate!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Take It All by Third Day

Take It All
All the promises I've broken
All the times I've let You down
You've forgot them
But still I hold on to the pain that makes me drown
Now I'm ready
To let it go
To give it away
Take it all
'Cause I can't take it any longer
All I have I can't make it on my own
Take the first
Take the last
Take the good and take the rest
Here I am, all I have
Take it all
All the roads that lie before me
All the struggles I go through
Every second I'm reminded
That it all belongs to You
Now I'm ready
To let it go
To give it away
Ever since I died to myself
You gave a better life to me
I give You my finest moment
I give You the last breath I breathe
Take it all
'Cause I can't take it any longer
All I have I can't make it on my own
Take the first
Take the last
Take the good and take the rest
Here I am, all I have
Take it all
(Mark Lee)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Falling Leaves

Autumn Here at Home



The above are all pictures of our maple tree as it changed over the past month.

The view from my schoolroom window. The trash cans belong to our neighbor :-(

Looking down our street.

Rose of Sharon seeds



Does anyone know what kind of plant the above is? It's comes up every year.



Dogwood leaves

One of the bird feeders in our front yard. My desk is right behind that window so I get a great view of the all birds!

One of our backyard feeders--squirrel proof!

Trees in our backyard

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Vertigo


Where have been lately? Swimming around in my own head! I woke up the other day and as soon as I tried to get out of bed, the room was spinning and I was flat on my back. Thankfully I fell back on my bed! All day long I was laying in my bed unable to move without the world (in my head) spinning out of control. It got so bad that I even threw up. Not fun!
I had a call in to my doctor at 1:30 and 3:00 and 5:00; the doctor on call finally returned the call at 7:00 pm. Thankfully the pharmacy was still open and my dh was able to get some medication. It has really helped although I can't move too fast or I feel a little off balance.
I've been downstairs watching football most of the day (although, at this moment, the Eagles are not making me feel better!). My sweet hubby and daughter have been taking good care of me: making lunch, cleaning up, bringing me drinks, making sure I'm comfortable. Thank you!!!
I'm hoping all be back to normal tomorrow but I think this will be one of those "take it one day at a time" kind of thing!

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Sunday Hymn

Come, All Christians, Be Committed
Come, all Christians, be committed
To the service of the Lord.
Make your lives for Him more fitted,
Tune your hearts with one accord.
Come into His courts with gladness,
Each his sacred vows renew,
Turn away from sin and sadness,
Be transformed with life anew.
Of your time and talents give ye,
They are gifts from God above,
To be used by Christians freely
To proclaim His wondrous love.
Come again to serve the Savior,
Tithes and off'rings with you bring.
In your work with Him find favor,
And with joy His praises sing.
God's command to love each other
Is required of every man.
Showing mercy to a brother
Mirrors His redemptive plan.
In compassion He has given
Of His love that is divine;
On the cross sins were forgiven;
Joy and peace are fully thine.
Come in praise and adoration,
All who on Christ's name believe.
Worship Him with consecration,
Grace and love will you receive.
For His grace give Him the glory,
For the Spirit and the Word,
And repeat the gospel story
Till all men His name have heard.
(Eva B. Lloyd)

Thoughts on Voting by John Piper

Friday, October 31, 2008

Friday at Home

I had lots of errands to do today and some of them didn't go as planned. Nothing major when compared with the problems of the world, just annoying to me. I prayed for a calm heart, and I took C. J. Mahaney's advice in Living the Cross Centered Life. Instead of listening to myself complain and whine about my piddly little problems, I talked to myself. Here's what C. J. says: On a daily basis we're faced with two simple choices. We can either listen to ourselves and our constantly changing feelings about our circumstances, or we can talk to ourselves about the unchanging truth of who God is and what's He's accomplished for us at the cross through His Son Jesus.

Amazing what a little talk can do! I realized that my day that wasn't going the way I planned wasn't really that big of a deal in the scheme of things. He arranged the day and the circumstances and, at first, I didn't respond biblically. But God is faithful! When I prayed (and sent a text for my husband to pray [pray for me. bad day]), the Holy Spirit reminded me of the words I had read in C. J.'s book. Thank you, Lord! Thank you for reminding me that "nothing else--not even things that are biblical and honorable--are of equal or greater importance than this: God sent His Son to the cross to bear His wrath for sinners like you and me. If there's anything in life we should be passionate about, it's the gospel. And I don't mean passionate about sharing it with others; I mean passionate in thinking about the gospel, reflecting upon it, rejoicing in it, allowing it to color the way we look at the world at the world and all of life."

If you haven't read Living a Cross Centered Life, I urge you to read and re-read it. It will have a life-changing effect on your life!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Pumpkin Patch

Best Friends, Fellow Bible Study-er, Sisters in Christ, Keeper of Secrets Extraordinaire












Shooting corn cobs at a target!









Julianne's pumpkin
















Wednesday, October 29, 2008

What This World Needs

What This World Needs by Casting Crowns

What this world needs is not another one-hit wonder with an axe to grind
Another two-bit politician peddling lies
Another three-ring circus society
What this world needs is not another sign-waving super saint that's better than you
Another ear-pleasing candy man afraid of the truth
Another prophet in an Armani suit

What this world needs is a Savior who will rescue
A Spirit who will lead
A Father who will love them in their time of need
A Savior who will rescue
A Spirit who will lead
A Father who will love--
That's what this world needs

What this world needs is for us to care more about the inside than the outside
Have we become so blind that we can't see
God's gotta change her heart before He changes her shirt
What this world needs is for us to stop hiding behind our relevance
Blending in so well that people can't see the difference
And it's the difference that sets the world free
Jesus is our Savior, that's what this world needs
Father's arms around you, that's what this world needs
That's what this world needs

What this world needs is a Savior who will rescue
A Spirit who will lead
A Father who will love them in their time of need
A Savior who will rescue
A Spirit who will lead
A Father who will love--
That's what this world needs

(Mark Hall, Hector Cervantes)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stamping



Last night Jessica and Matt came over for dinner. I made Impossible Cheeseburger Pie, corn, mashed potatoes, broccoli and cheese, apple pie and ice cream. It was the perfect dinner for a chilly night!
After dinner Matt watched the Monday Night Football game while switching to the Phillies so I could keep up with the score. It ended in a tie around the 5th inning because it was called for rain. Go Phillies!
Jessica and I worked on stamping cards. Actually Jessica made a bunch of Christmas cards and I made a few get-well ones. I wasn't in the mood for stamping because I was so tired. We had company Saturday night (fellowship group), Sunday after church (new-ish family from church), and Jess and Matt last night and I had cooked all three times! So I mostly sat and talked which was a lot of fun.
It is very windy here today as a cold front came through yesterday. We're supposed to get in the lower 30's tonight. The trees are mostly green but I can see patches of red, gold, and yellow popping up! I think with the lower temps this week we should have more color.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Sunday Hymn


O, How I Love Jesus

There is a name I love to hear,
I love to sing its worth;
It sounds like music to my ear,
The sweetest name on earth.

O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus--
because He first loved me!
It tells me of a Savior's love,
who died to set me free;
It tells me of His precious blood,
The sinner's perfect plea.

O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus--
because He first loved me!
It tells me what my Father hath
In store for ev'ry day,
And, tho I tread a darksome path,
Yields sunshine all the way.

O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus--
because He first loved me!

It tells of One whose loving heart
Can feel my deepest woe,
Who ineach sorrow bears a part
That none can bear below.

O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus,
O, how I love Jesus--
because He first loved me!

(Frederick Whitfield)

Mid-Afternoon Snack



Oatmeal Cranberry White Chocolate Chunk Cookies


2/3 cup butter, softened
2/3 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups old-fashioned oats
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup Craisins
2/3 cup white chocolate chunks or chips


Preheat oven to 375* F. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and sugar together in a medium mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add eggs, mixing well. Combine oats, flour, baking soda, and
salt in a separate mixing bowl. Add to butter mixture in several additions, mixing well after each addition. Stir in Craisins and white chocolate chunks. Drop by rounded teaspoonfuls onto ungreased cookie sheets. Box for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Cool on wire rack. Makes about 2.5 dozen. Try to each just one!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Love


I love dogs! I just had to say that. Continue on to the next blog on your list. ;-)

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Tonight



We have a frost advisory this evening. It's supposed to get down to 33*. I brought all my houseplants in that were on the deck. I guess this means Autumn is officially here!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Sunday Hymn (after a nearly year's absence)


Safely Through Another Week

Safely through another week, God has brought us on our way;
Let us now a blessing seek, Waiting in His courts today:
Day of all the week the best, Emblem of eternal rest;
Day of all the week the best, Emblem of eternal rest.

While we pray for pardoning grace, Thro' the dear Redeemer's Name,
Show Thy reconciled face, Take away our sin and shame;
From our worldly cares set us free, May we rest this day in Thee;
From our worldly cares set us free, May we rest this day in Thee.

Here we come Thy Name to praise, may we feel Thy presence near:
May Thy glory meet our eyes, While we in Thy house appear:
Here afford us, Lord, a taste Of our everlasting feast;
Here afford us, Lord, a taste Of our everlasting feast.

May Thy gospel's joyful sound Conquer sinners, comfort saints;
Make the fruits of gace abound, Bring relief for all complaints:
Thus may all our Sabbaths prove, till we join the Church above;
Thus may all our Sabbaths prove, till we join the church above.

(John Newton)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My Birthday/Anniversary Present

This is my birthday/anniversary (they're 9 days apart) present from my sweet husband. I love it!

Thanks, Michael! xoxoxoxox








Isn't it pretty? I named it Scarlett O'Hara!