November 30, 2008

Sweet Potato Recipe

If you know me, many of my recipes are just throwing a few things together that sound good. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. However, the other day I wanted to make a sweet potato dish without the work of peeling, chopping, boiling and mashing the potatoes with other ingredients, then baking it!

So, I took three medium-large sweet potatoes, peeling and chopped them. I put them in a square casserole dish, added a can of pineapple chunks. (yes a fresh one would be much better, but I didn't have one). Cover with foil and bake for 20-30 minutes at 400 degrees. Take them out and test for tenderness- if still on the hard side put the potatoes back in the oven another 10-15 minutes. Next I made a topping- 1/2 cup shredded coconut, 1/2 cup chopped pecans, 1/3 cup of brown sugar or rapadura and a generous sprinkling of cinnamon(evaporated cane juice) and mixed them all together. When the potatoes were tender I sprinkled with the topping and cooked uncovered 10 minutes, or until coconut was browned.

YUMMY- not too sweet. I don't really care for sweet potatoes, but this was good.

November 26, 2008

Wishing I could multiply myself....

So much to do and so little time! My husband is set on having our garage sale this Saturday, even though I will be gone both Thursday and Friday before. (two different Thanksgiving gatherings) So, not only do I have the normal Thanksgiving prep, but I also have to get everything ready now for the sale. My house is dirty- the chairs and table have a layer of grime, the windows and TV/computer screens are sooooo smudged up, the bathrooms need cleaning, the floor needs to be swept and scrubbed and there is a large pile of clothes needing to be folded. Oh! I just remembered the cloth diapers I washed yesterday- they're still in the washer! Hope they aren't sour, then I'll have to start over again.

I did finally vacuum the living room- it was awful! My husband keeps telling me not to worry about it, but it's hard. So far I've made the cranberry sauce, the pumpkin cheesecake and a loaf of quick bread (to use up leftovers). Now I need to figure out what to do with some more leftovers before they go bad, make dough for the challah bread, figure out dinner and start setting up my junk and pricing it. The kitchen is pretty messy right now and I'm not in the mood to clean it. However, we are all dressed, the beds are made, the bedrooms and bathrooms are tidy and the living room is very tidy. So, all is not a total loss :) Plus, I found lots of things I've been looking for after I went through our stuff last night, duh!

Alright, must go and do something. I don't know what yet, but something...

Parts 3 and 4

" I shall a little return back and begin with a combination made by them before they came ashore. being the first foundation of their government in this place; occasioned partly by the discontented and mutinous speeches that some of the strangers amongst them had let fall from them in the ship- that when they came ashore they would use their own liberty; for none had power to command them...The form was as follows: (The Mayflower Compact)

" 'In the name of God, amen. We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread sovereign lord, Kind James, by the grace of God, of Great Britain, Frances, and Ireland king, defender of the faith etc. having undertaken, for the glory of God, and advancement of he Christian faith, and honor of our king and country , a voyage to plant the first colony in the northern parts of Virginia, do by these presents solemnly and mutually in the presence of God, and one of another, covenant and combine ourselves together into a civil body politic, for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute, and frame such just and equal laws, ordinances, acts, constitutions, and offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the colony, unto which promise all due submission and obedience. In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape cod the 11 of November, in the year of the reign of our sovereign lord, King James, of England, France, and Ireland the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty fourth. Anno:Dom 1620' "

Afterwards they elected officers and formed the government for the colony once they were ashore.

"In these hard and difficult beginnings they found some discontents and murmurings arise amongst some, and mutinous speeches and carriages in other; but they wee soon quelled and overcome by the wisdom, patience, and just and equal carriage of things by the governor and better part, which clave faithfully together in the main. But that which was most sad and lamentable was, that in two or three months time half of their company died, especially in January and February, being the depth of winter, and wanting houses and other comforts; being infected with scurvy and other diseases, which this long voyage and their inaccomodate condition had brought upon them; so as there died sometimes two or three of a day, in the foresaid time; that of 100 and odd persons, scarce 50 remained. And of these in the time of most distress, there was but six or seven sound persons, who, to their great commendations be it spoken, spared no pains, night nor day, but with abundance of toil and hazard of their own health, fetched them wooed, made them fires, dressed them meat, and made their breads, washed their loathsome clothes, clothed and unclothed them, in a word, did all the homely and necessary offices for them which dainty and queasy stomaches cannot endure to hear named; and all this willingly and cheerfully, without any grudging in the least, showing herein their true love unto their friends and brethren.

Part 4

There is a lot of information in the next several, several pages, so I will condense. One thing I forgot is Bradford didn't really highlight on their Thanksgiving Feast, but I can pinpoint when it happened. I will do my best at paraphrasing.

"All this while the Indians came skulking about them, and would sometimes sometimes show themselves aloof of, but when any approached near them, they would run away. And once they stole away their tools where they had been at work, and were gone to dinner. But about the 16 of March a certain Indian came boldly amongst them, and spoke to them in broken English, which they could well understand but marveled at it. At length they understood by discourse with him, that he was not of these parts, but belonged to the eastern parts, where some English ships came to fish with whom he was acquainted, and could name many of them by their names, amongst whom he had got his language. He became profitable unto them; as also of the people here, of their names, number, and strength; of their situation and distance from this place, and who was chief amongst them. His name was Samasetl he told them also of another Indian whose name was Squanto, a native of this place, who had been in England and could speak better English than himself. Being, after sometime of entertainment and gifts, dismissed awhile after he came again and ive more with him, and they brought again all the tools that were stolen away before. and made way for the coming of their great Sachem, called Massasoyet; who, about four or five days after, came with the chief of his friends and other attendance, with the aforesaid Squanto. With whom, after friendly entertainment and gifts given him, they made peace with him (which has now continued this 24 years)...

Next the Indians and Pilgrims made a 'peace' agreement to abide by, basically not to hurt each other, and what to do if someone did hurt the other.

"...The spring now approaching it pleased God the mortality began to cease amongst them, and the sick and lame recovered apace, which put as it were new life into them though they had born their sad affliction with much patience and contentedness...Afterwards they began to plant their corn, in which the service Squanto stood them in great stead, showing them both the mnner howt to set it and after how to dress and tend it. Also he told them except they got fish nd set with it (in these old grounds) it would come to nothing, and he showed them that in the middle of April they should have store enough come up the brook by which they began to build., and taught them how to take it, and where to get their provisions necessary for them; all which they found true by trial and experience."

"They began now to gather in the small harvest they had and to fit up their houses and dwellings against winter, being all well recovered in health and strength, and had all things in good plenty; for as some were thus employed in affairs abroad, others were exercised in fishing, about cod and bass, and other fish of which they took good store, of which every family had their portion. All the summer there was not want. And now began to come in store of fowl, as winter approached, of which this place did abound when they first came (but afterward decreased by degrees). And besides water fowl, there was great store of wild turkeys, of which they took many, besides venison etc. Besides they ahd about a peck a meal a week to a person or now since harvest, Indian corn to that proportion. "

So, I am thinking that after the harvest of corn, and the plentiful wild turkeys, this is where the harvest feast occurred, or Thanksgiving. What happened next was more ships with more people began to come in, and the people came with no provisions, thus they were very hungry that winter. After awhile, their commune idea fell apart- no one was prospering because they couldn't reap the fruit of their own labors, so they finally put a stop to that- for each man

Well, this will be all of the Thanksgiving history. There is much, much more written about the colony, which is rather boring :) Hope this helps shed some light on why we even celebrate what some people call ' Turkey Day'!

November 25, 2008

Michigan update, and Thanksgiving History 2

For those wondering if we are still moving, yes we are. My husband got a call on Friday about a possible job with a grocery store chain up there. This is ideal because that's what he's already doing, and it would sort of ease the transition if he could do something similar. We are praying that it will work out because the guy didn't know for sure if there was a job open, he was just impressed with dh's resume.

We are 'preparing for rain' so to speak- we've told everyone now and have been sorting through things for a yard sale. I have started boxing things up yet, but after the sale we will. There have been lots of challenges here, mainly because it doesn't look like much is happening, but we have to look at what is unseen and rest assured in what God told us. There are days when the thought of it all is very scary and I cry about leaving, but for the most part I am excited and look forward to the changes coming. I wish we could move right into our own house from the start, but we really want to pay off all our debts. In fact (get ready for this) I may get a job. Since I would be living with my inlaws, they would stay with the girls. This is a good thing, because they have barely seen them at all since they were born, so make up for lost time. Plus, if we put all the money I would make onto our bills, in a year they would be gone. This is huge because we are greatly in debt. This is why we haven't left yet-we gotta pay the bills!

To pick up where we left off the previous Thanksgiving post...

"But to return to the others where we left. The rest of the men that were in greatest danger were able to escape before the troop could surprise them; those only staying that bet might, to be assistant unto the women. But pitiful it was to see the heavy case of these poor women in this distress; what weeping and crying on every side, some for their husbands, that were carried away in the ship as is before related; others not knowing what should become of them, and the little ones; others again melted in tears, seeing their poor little ones hanging about them, crying for fear, and quaking with cold. Being thus apprehended, they were hurried from once place to another, and from one justice to another, till in the end they knew not what to do with them; for to imprison so many women and innocent children for no other cause but that they must go with their husbands, seemed to be unreasonable and all would cry out of them; and to send them home eagain was as difficult, for the alleged. as the truth was they had no home to go to. for they had either sold or otherwise disposed of their houses and livings. To be short, after they had been thus turmoiled a good while, and conveyed from one constable to another, they were glad to be rid of them in the end upon any terms; for all were wearied and tired with them. Though in the mean time they endured misery enough; and thus in the end necessity forced a way for them."

So it was that as news traveled about what had transpired, many had compassion on them, and helped them by getting them on a boat and sailing to Holland. In the end, they all eventually got to Holland, because of the help of other people. When they arrived, of course they were in a different culture completely, had a new language to learn and had to find a means for providing for their families, which was difficult in the beginning. They had problems with the church already established- there were some differences in doctrine, and so they eventually had to break away and form their own church. They all moved to the town of Leyden, and there established their church. However, it was much harder to make a living there, it being a smaller place than Amsteradam. They were known by the Dutch for their honesty, diligence and keeping their word, and were greatly valued in the country.

After 12 years of prosperity an uprising began to take place between the Dutch and the Spaniards, and life became much harder. A time of war was coming and religious freedom would be over. Many were killed and imprisoned, the children became older earlier because of the workload they carried to help their parents, many children left the faith completely because of the hardships, and they felt it was time to move on.
"Lastly, (and which was not least), a great hope and inward zeal they had of laying some good foundation, or at least to make some way thereunto, for the propagating and advancing of the gospel of the kingdom of Christ in those remote parts of the world; yea, though they should be but even as stepping stones unto oters for the performing of so great a work. These and some other like reason moved them to undertake this resolution of their removal; the which they afterward prosecuted with so great difficulties..."

They came together and discussed the advantages and disadvantages of coming to America. At the time Virginia was established as British colony, and they were seeking to go there. Their fear was that if they went there, then they would be required to worship as those in England, which is what they had fled from. Here were some of their other concerns:

" The place they had thoughts on was some of those vast and unpeopled countries of America, which are fruitful and fit for habitation being devoid of all civil inhabitants, where there are only savage and brutish men, which range up and down, little otherwise then the wild beast of the same...For there they should be liable to famine, and nakedness, and the lack in a manner, of all things. The change of air, diet and drinking of water would infect their bodies sore sicknesses, and grievous diseases. And alas those which should escape or overcome these difficulties, should yet be in continual danger of the savage people, who are cruel, barbarous and most treacherous, being most furious in their rage, and merciless where they overcome; not being content only to kill and take away life, but delight to torment men in the most bloody manner..."

Also there were the lack of funds and supplies needed for such a trip to deal with. As it turned out, they were granted the more northern part of America, which they named New England, and would have complete and total freedom of religion. Then they created a plan for when they arrived. Most people don't know this, but the Pilgrims attempted a from of socialism when they first landed in America. The agreement was that everyone age 16 years and up had a 'share' in the common provision.
" The persons transported and the adventurers shall continue their joint stock and partnership together the space of seven years, during which time, all profits and benefits that are got by trade, traffic, trucking, working, fishing, or any other means of any person or persons, remain still in the common stock until the division."
We''ll learn how this turns out later.

So, they finally got everything worked out, got a boat and the provisions and supplies they needed and set out for America. The had good weather in the beginning, but then lots of storms and bad weather broke a beam and it was thought they wouldn't make it. However, the mariners were able to repair it and they finally landed ashore, which they called Cape Cod on the 11th of November.

" But here I cannot bust stay and make a pause, and stand half amused at this poor people's present condition; and so I think will the reader too, when he well considers the same. Being thus passed the vast ocean, and a sea of troubles before in their preparation they had now now friends to welcome them, nor inns to entertain or refresh their weatherbeaten bodies, no houses or much less towns to repair too, to seek for succor.It is recored in scripture as a mercy to the apostle and his shipwrecked company that the barbarians showed them no small kindness in refreshing them, but these savage barbarians, when they met with them were readier to fill their sides full o arrows then otherwise. And for the season it was winter, and they that know the winters of that country know them to be sharp and violent., and subject to cruel and fierce storms, dangerous to travel to known places, much more to search an unknown coast. Besides, what could they see but hideous and desolate wilderness, full of wild beast and wild men? And what multitudes there might of them they knew not. Neither could they, as it were, go upt to the top of Pisgah, to view from this wilderness a more goodly country to feed their hopes; for which way soever they urned their eyes they could have little solace or content in respect of any outward objects. For summer being done, all things stand upon them with a weatherbeaten face, and the whole country, full of woods and thickets, represented a wild and savage hue. If they looked behind them, there was the mighty ocean which they had passed, and was now as a min bar and gulf to separate them from all the civil parts of the world...What could now sustain them but the spirit of God and His grace? May not and ought not the children of these fathers rihtly say: Our fatheres were Englishmen which came over this great ocean, and were ready to perish in this wilderness; but they cried unto the Lord, and He heard their voice, and looked on their adversity. Let them therefore praise the Lord, because He is good and His mercies endure forever. Yea, let them which have been redeemed of the Lord, show how He hath delivered them from the hand of the oppressor. When they wandered in the desert wilderness out of the way, and found no city to dwell in, both hungry and thirsty, their soul was overwhelmed in them. Let them confess before the Lord His lovingkindness, and His wonderful works before the sons of men. "

November 24, 2008

Thanksgiving History Part 1

I am going to re-post these Thanksgiving History posts I did last year. These are not simple reading, but if you can work through it it is very enlightening to see the heart behind all these people who came to America. Their desire was truly worshiping in freedom and in truth. Enjoy!

You may think I've misspelled a word on my title- this is the original spelling of Plymouth. Here is my attempt at sharing with the world the real history of our country. I am going to change it a little, and here is an example of why:

"And first of ye occasion and indusments ther unto; the which that I may truly unfould, I must begine at ye very roote and rise of ye same. The which I shall endevor to manefest in a plaine stile, with singuler regard unto ye simple trueth in all things, at least as near as my slender judgemente can attaine the same..."

"Ye" is actually pronounced "the", and as you may have noticed, the same word can be spelled differently. (Ye and the)

Ok, so we start at the very beginning, when they are in England and just beginning to learn the real Truth in the Word of God. I am going to stick very closely with what is written here because it's the most important. Let me know if I need to break it down more.

" But that I may come more near my intention; when as by the travail and diligence of some godly and zealous preachers, and God's blessing on their labors, as in other places of the land, so in the North parts (of England), many became enlightened by the Word of God, and had their ignorance and sins discovered unto them, and began by His grace to reform their lives, and make conscience of their ways, the work of God was no sooner manifest in them, but presently they were both scoffed and scorned by the profane multitude, and the ministers urged with the yoke of subscription( as in comply with what the church is teaching), or else must be silenced; and the poor people were so vexed apparators (similar to social worker except within the church) and the courts, as truly their affliction was not small; which, notwithstanding, they bore many years with much patience, till they were occasioned (by the continuance and increase of these troubles, and other means which the Lord raised up in those days) to see further into things by the light of the Word of God... So many therefore of these professors (of the faith) as saw the evil of these things, in these parts, and whose hearts the Lord had touched with heavenly Zeal for His truth, they shook of this yoke of anti-Christian bondage, and as the Lord's free people, joined themselves (by a covenant of the Lord) into a church estate, in the fellowship of the Gospel, to walk in all His ways, make known of to be made known unto them, according to their best endeavors, whatsoever it should cost them, the Lord assisting them. And that it cost them something this ensuing history will declare...
'Of their departure into Holland and their troubles there about, with some of the many difficulties they found and met withal. '

Being thus constrained to leave their native soil and country, their lands and livings, and all their friends and familiar acquaintance, it was much, and thought marvelous by many. But to go into a country they knew not, where they must learn a new language, and get their livings theyknew not how, it being a dear(not sure what this means) place, and subject to the miseries of war, it was by many thought an adventure almost desperate, a case intolerable, and a misery worse than death...But these things did not dismay them (though they did sometimes trouble them) for their desires were set on the ways of God, and to enjoy His ordinances; but they rested on His providence, and knew whom they had believed. Yet this was not all, for though they could not stay, yet they couldn't go, because the ports and havens were shut against them, so as they were forced to seek secret means of conveyance, and to bribe and fee the mariners, and give extraordinary rates for their passages. And yet were they often times betrayed and both they and their goods intercepted and surprised, and thereby put to great trouble and charge..."

The next part describes some of what happened when they were trying to get out of England- they were betrayed, their goods taken from them, they were imprisoned for a month or more, and the ones that were released tried again the next spring. Long story short, they found a Dutchman that would take them to Holland, and they had the women and children go a day ahead to the meeting place, while the men traveled on foot. The men boarded another boat, but the way things fell out, the women and children got left behind because a company of horsemen with guns were coming after them. All the men were grieved and crying, but nothing could be done. They were then in an awful storm and" driven near the coast of Norway, the mariners themselves often despairing of life; and once with shrieks and cries gave over all, as if the ship had been foundered in the sea, and they sinking without recovery.But when man's hope and help had wholly failed, the Lord's power and mercy appeared in their recovery; for the ship rose again and the gave the mariners courage again to manage her. And if modesty would suffer me, I might declare with what fervent prayers they cried unto the Lord in this great distress..."

Well, I will stop for now- it's getting late for me :) To be continued...we'll find out what happened to the women and children left behind.

**picture from

November 22, 2008

What's up

I'm so sorry little blog, it's so neglected! Honestly, I've just been interested in other things the last few days. For instance, today I made a mini Thanksgiving Feast. I bought a 16lb turkey on sale the other day and went ahead and defrosted it. Since I'm really into stretching food lately I figured I would spend a little extra and eat off that turkey for a good while.

So, I baked the turkey, made a little pan of cornbread dressing (with sausage, apple, onion and celery) and made a sweet potato thing that I just made up. It turned out good- diced three large sweet taters, mixed with a can of pineapple chunks and some ginger and cinnamon, then cover and bake until potatoes are tender, then mixed crushed up pecans, shredded coconut and some brown sugar, sprinkled on top and cooked it on a higher heat to caramelize the topping. Oh, and I made a cranberry apple pie. It was fun and now we have lots of leftovers to eat!

My oldest daughter will be out the whole week for Thanksgiving break, so I get a little break from having get up so early practically running, but then I'll have all three all the time :) Gotta make a plan for the days.

In other news, my husband got a call Friday from one of the places he applied for in Michigan. The guy explained they weren't really looking for someone, but were interested in dh because of all his experience. So, we'll see...waiting to hear back.

Today I went to walmart (alone!) and thoroughly enjoyed myself in the Christmas section. It's coming! And while yes, it is rather commercial, I still love it. And I am very partial to Santa Clause. Lots of people try to make him evil, but I love the Coca Cola Santa and several other pictures I see. Santa is a good guy...not the reason for the season, but it's fun for the children. They grow up and learn reality soon enough, why not let them have some pretend?? I totally believed in him but I also knew that most important was Jesus. I understood...

I need to go- gotta get ready for church tomorrow.

November 20, 2008


Wow, this is the first time I've been online all day and it's 11:11 pm!

Today was a really hard day. The only explanation I can give is that I was under some major spiritual warfare. Just seemingly out of the blue I felt lost and like what I do isn't worthwhile and depressed and so on. I mean, it was a real attack from satan. The reason I know this is because I've been working extra hard to fill in all free time with Bible study, watching sermons online, prayer etc. And, when it finally lifted, there was a feeling of great relief. My children sensed my struggle and played on it by doing every terrible thing they could think of too.

But through it all, I still managed to do the basics as well as the week's baking and some school work with Alexa. I just spent a lot of time face down on my bed crying and praying as well. The enemy was trying to get me to look at other women, and how they were wives and mothers yet also had a career. They 'had it all'. And all I did each day was clean house, care for children and cook. And too, I just sometimes feel like I'm not the greatest mom either.

So my flesh was raring up, crying out that it wasn't fair that I gave up my desire to do mission work, my desire to go to Bible school etc. to stay home with babies. But in reality, I could have done all of those things, but God specifically told me that He wanted me to marry and have children. Then I say, Lord, I'm tired of always serving and giving and pouring myself out all the time. Will I get a break from it? This is what He says: (paraphrased)

"Whoever loses his life for my sake shall find it."
"Do not grow weary in well doing, for in a due season you shall reap a harvest..."
" The first shall be last and the last shall be first..."
"For we wrestle not against flesh, but against principalities and powers..."
"For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds."

There is such great pressure on us today- it's because the time is at hand for Jesus to return for the bride- me! Pressure to do everything right, to look right, for the kids to act right, be the best wife, the best mother, the best homemaker, the healthiest, the most organized, the most frugal and so on. Really, the main thing is that we do our very best, as unto the Lord. It doesn't matter if it's perfect in the world's eyes.

I need to take my own advice :)

November 18, 2008

The Red Dresss

This is the dress I made for my middle child, Alexa. She wanted the exact red dress on the pattern cover. I tried my best and she liked it. I had cut it out like two months ago, so when I finally sewed it together, it just fit! Hopefully she won't grow out of it too quick.

It's so wrinkled because I just washed it from Sunday's wearing and let it air dry. Next on the list is two dress for Sarah for church. I'm not sure which pattern I will use yet, maybe this one with long puffed sleeves. It is so much fun to sew for the girls- they look adorable in the dresses and it's so easy to fit them. Wish I could say the same for myself :(

November 17, 2008

Cranky Day

Thanks for all the helpful hints on potty training and Christmas. Sarah just flips out when we have her sit on the potty, yet she continually takes off the diapers/pullups. She's too big for her cloth diapers or I would use those.

We decided to do our garage sale this weekend, so I might not be around much this week. I so dread it- so much work!! I mostly just want to get rid of the stuff, but we do hope to make enough money to help with Christmas. I just need to readjust my attitude about it and then it won't seem so overwhelming.

I need a major attitude adjustment today anyways. I just woke up tired and groggy, and today is my fasting day, which I just broke. I've been so irritable and foggy brained I just caved and ate some pasta for lunch...oh well...all is not lost I suppose.

November 14, 2008

Saved Sinner- I accidentally deleted your comment. Could you please send me the links again?? Sorry...

Thinking About Christmas

It has started...slowly but surely the world is becoming Christmasy. I love Christmas myself, but I like to wait until at least after Thanksgiving to decorate. You get tired of it after awhile...

So that leads me to think about what things we want to do this year, such as, do we want to get a real tree or use our fake Charlie Brown one? Are we going to put lights up outside, what goodies shall I bake, what presents will we buy/make?

I for one wish to simplify things a bit this year. I say that every year, but this time there just aren't a lot of funds to spend. Every year I watch my children pretty much destroy what they get for Christmas and get overwhelmed with it all, so I don't see the point in going all out on the presents. They just get torn up anyways, especially if they're cheap.

My husband and I are planning to save whatever bonus he will get for something important, like paying off debts and moving. That means I must buy a little at a time and make some things. Some ideas I've had so far:

I found a yummy looking recipe called Christmas Jam
You can make this and decorate with pretty fabric on top. You can google 'gifts in a jar' and find all kinds of recipes for cookies and drink mixes to give.

For the girls, I have seen some tiny little porcelain tea sets at the dollar store for $1 that I am planning to get. Also I can sew doll clothes, doll blankets, night gowns etc. We can get art supplies and go to second hand stores to look for dress up clothes. They do need clothes and shoes as well, so I will keep my eyes open for that too.

This year, instead of buying fru fru Christmas dresses, I will purchase some cotton Christmas print fabric and make them jumpers to wear with white or red turtlenecks. I only need about 1.5 yards of fabric for each child, which averages about $4-5 and I don't need buttons or zippers. However, if I find some cute Christmas buttons I may get some for embellishment.

I had also planned on making a gingerbread house with the girls. I need to research it a bit more though...I've made one before, but my grandmother made the actual cookie pieces and I just helped put it together and decorate. It was fun! (yeah, I was like 16 years old too)

So anyways, just thinking and thinking about it. I want it to be fun and full of memories, not a ball of stress and hassle. Here's a picture of last year's Christmas tree- the $30 one from Walmart.

November 12, 2008

Day of Messes-warning, partly a female post

Yesterday was like the Twilight Zone or something. I woke up late for starters and found that (sorry if the is too much info) I had 'leaked' onto my bed. (from the monthly visitor) I didn't have time to change the bed because I needed to get Leiah ready for school. So I make her lunch and get breakfast started and realize that she has leaked on her bed (pee) and Alexa (the middle one) has also peed Sarah's bed.

After I got Leiah to school and go to get the beds changed, I find that Sarah took off her diaper and then peed in Alexa's bed. So, I get everything changed and washed. As the day went on, I myself went through two more pairs of clothes because I was bleeding so heavily! During snack time, I made them all sit at the table because I'm tired of cleaning crumbs off of everything. I got a phone call, and somehow they still managed to make a huge mess on the floor I had just mopped!!! So, about 4:30 in the afternoon they wanted to go outside. It has been pouring down rain for two days so the world is soggy and puddles all over. So I let them go- within 5 minutes all of them have fallen in the water. Sarah is dragging a blanket that I just washed that she peed on that morning. So I go outside to get them and my neighbor comes over to talk. I look over and Sarah has taken her skirt and diaper off, in the soggy yard. So I run over to fix her and step into a mudhole- my whole foot is covered in mud. The neighbor is still trying to talk to me through all of this- so I wash it off in a puddle and see that Sarah has taken off her shoes and is running in the wet grass in socks only. Finally, I get everyone to the porch, strip them down, get changed and get dinner on the table!

My husband had a wild day at work too...anyone else? Full moon?? Weird...

So, here's my question- ( I will try to give it as much feeling as possible)- CAN ANYONE HELP ME POTTY TRAIN MY CHILDREN PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I stink at it- I can't even remember how we got Alexa trained. (just before she turned three) Sarah will be three in March and she seems to understand, but completely resists it. I haven't tried treats or anything yet. I have the toilet training in a day book, but I don't have a doll that potties...

Leiah you know is special and has a lack of communication at present. She goes potty at school but I don't know if she is actually going in the toilet. At home she doesn't indicate a need to go at all. Part of it is my fault because I get busy and forget. It's also hard for her to get up and down off the potty and pulling the clothes up and down can be a challenge for her too. She will be 6 in January, and I know she wants to be a big girl. I personally am getting real tired of changing poops- 2 or 3 a day. And we just can't afford all the pull ups/wipes and night time diapers. (those Goodnights things are expensive!)

So someone, please have mercy and help me. Come to my house and walk me through for the next few months. Ha, ha, just kidding...I wish...

Must get off- shopping day today.

November 11, 2008

My toothpaste

For several weeks now, my husband and I have abandoned regular toothpaste. I noticed that I had a build up of plaque on the insides of the bottom of my teeth. I don't really have money or time to go to a dentist to scrape it off, so I hit the internet.

I found out that common household ingredients can clean as well as heal your teeth better than anything else. So, I mixed up baking soda, salt and some drops of peppermint oil and started using that. I sometimes dip my toothbrush in hydrogen peroxide before I dip it in the baking soda mix and brush. It's slightly unpleasant, but not real bad. Anyways, my teeth are cleaner and some painful nerve sensitivities are now gone. I haven't checked the plaque situation lately, but I will keep doing this and see how it works.

I got all my information here.

Now, if I could just get the kids to go for it...

November 10, 2008

Cool site

I just wanted to share a great website I happened on a couple of weeks ago. This woman has endeavored to use her crockpot every day for a whole year. I am really inspired because the recipes are very healthy and I just have a hard time knowing what to put in the crockpot. It sure would help in the evenings when everything goes haywire while I'm trying to cook.

I made yogurt last week and it turned out very well. I just left it plain, but I may blend up so fruit in it next time. Here she is: Stephanie, at A Year of Crockpotting

November 9, 2008

What's coming up

Ok, peoples, I started a new blog. There's a link for it on the left there. Be forewarned that I will be posting pictures from time to time, not naked ones-I have a swimsuit on :)

I am going to do a three day juice fast, and then I'm not sure what I will do after that. If all goes well, I may continue on the fast for 5 days or even longer.

Anyways, I can hardly believe that Thanksgiving is in two weeks! And you know what comes after that- the Christmas madness!! I am supposed to be doing the Christmas party for our church this year, since I had the idea of not going to a restaurant this time, so I gotta think about that too. Plus I will have guests (dh's parents) with us on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, so I will have some extra things to do.

My decluttering went alright last week- we didn't get to it Saturday, we rearranged our bedroom instead and it's great! Anyways, I'm not sure how posting on two blogs will go, but I'll try to keep them updated as often as I can.

Have a good week.

November 7, 2008


My To Do List for today...

* strip all the beds and wash the sheets- hang outside to dry- haven't done that in ages and it's a beautiful day (um, winter doesn't arrive here till January or so)

* sweep and mop the kitchen- the eating area is awful. My girls eat like pigs and after a long day, I'm not going to get on my hands and knees and clean up pieces of food off the floor. So, I either let the dog in and then mop, or just wait till morning and sweep and mop. Gross...

* quickly wipe sticky surfaces and vacuum living room

* run to the store for a few things I couldn't find the other day

* get waffle batter soaking and change out kefir

* If I have time I have got to finish Leiah's quilt- the actual quilting part. I have just had no motivation...grrr, I want to move on to making pretty dresses for Sarah and Alexa, but I won't let myself till the other is done.

One other thing, for those of you who homeschool. I have a very hard time 'slowing down' the momentum in the mornings when I'm getting stuff done to sit down and do 'school'. My mind is rushing ahead with what needs to be done. How do you overcome those feelings? My 4 year old is just doing preschool work, but she really enjoys it and I haven't been taking much time on it lately. My children aren't that big of a help yet, so I pretty much have to do everything. (besides them picking up toys and putting things away) I hate feeling like I'm behind on stuff.

Anyways, just wondering. I'm trying to decide on what to do about school. My oldest is in a special program at the public school, but they are moving that class to another town, 15 minutes away and that makes me uncomfortable. The facility will be awesome, but still... Alexa will be going to kindergarten next year along with Leiah, but I'm not sure if we should do that or homeschool. I am terribly undisciplined when it comes to doing homeschool--it would take a lot of time to do the special things with Leiah, not to mention I would need to travel for her speech therapy.

Just thinking out loud here...

November 6, 2008


Many thanks to DeNiece for this award.

I am passing it on to Candy, at Keeping the Home

To Lori, at Michigan Momma

To Mrs. Darling, at Dishpan Dribble

and to Lindsay, at Passionate Homemaking

An Idea

I'm considering doing something drastic. I came up on some videos on about a woman who is making a video diary of her shrinking body. I was really inspired by how she's letting all the world see her undesirable fat parts and the daily battle of changing your diet and lifestyle.

She actually goes through 40 days and I watched them all. You can see the first one here.

She shows her naked belly but everything else is covered and she uses a few cuss words ever so often but nothing horribly offensive. I am considering doing something similar just on my blog. However, it probably wouldn't be video, since I don't have the stuff to do that, I don't think.

I have been considering doing a major juice fast for health improvement and the fact that you can lose at least 1 pound a day :) I am thinking of doing a 'sundown to sundown' type of fast, where I juice fast all day until the evening meal, then break it, then go back on in the mornings. Not sure.

Anyways, it's frustrating because we eat healthy and I don't gain weight, but I don't lose either. I can't seem to get into a good exercise routine, and there are things in my body that still need healing/cleansing. I have an awesome juicer borrowed from my mom, so why not? I just made some that was GREAT!! It was two green apples, three carrots and a square of ginger and it was delicious.

So, if it would be of interest to others, I might create a new blog just for that purpose, so as not to offend newcomers. (by offend I mean that my bare belly is a sight to behold and not in a good way) I know in my recent pictures I don't look fat, but that's the upper part :)

I'll be thinking on it; if you're interested leave a comment.

How Great is our God

This is a picture of the whirlpool galaxy M51, some million lightyears away.

When the Hubble telescope took a picture of the very center of the galaxy, this is what it got.

Truly, the heavens declare the glory of God. It's like He was just waiting for us to build a telescope big and strong enough to see this, just to prove how big He is and how much He loves us.

November 5, 2008

More from The Tongue, A Creative Force

I'm finally adding to this series...sorry it's taken so long. This the second part of where we left off last time. You can read the first half here.


Now let's see what Jesus had to say about faith-filled words. I want you to see how He used His words and how they produced for Him. In Mark chapter 11, verses 1-4, we read, " And Jesus entered into Jerusalem, and into the temple: and when He had looked round about upon all things, and now eventide was come, He went out unto Bethany with the twelve. And on the morrow, when they were come from Bethany, He was hungry:And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, He came, if haply He might find any thing theron: and when He came to it, He found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. And Jesus answered and said unto it, No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And His disciples heard it."

Now Jesus had gone to the fig tree to get some figs and found none. And He said, "No man eat fruit of thee hereafter forever," and He just walked off. When they came back that way the next day, verse 21 says the disciples called Jesus' attention to the fig tree. They said (I'll paraphrase), 'The leaves are withered; that thing died from the roots. Did You notice that, Jesus? The tree You cursed.'

I always wondered why Jesus 'cussed' the fig tree. I thought He 'cussed' it when I was a little child, but you see, the word 'curse' means that Jesus spoke negativism to it. I want you to notice the words that the Bible uses. It says He put a curse on the fig tree.

Now, we, as believers, have put curses on people by the words of our mouth. I've heard people do it. Someone would come and get saved in the service. They would say, "Oh I know them. They get saved every time we have a revival. You just watch, they;ll go away and in three weeks, they'll be right back in sin." And sure enough, they were bac in sin. They thought that was a prophetic utterance but it wasn't; it was a curse.

And they said, 'See, I told you so."

They were part of the problem. The words of their mouth worked against that person. Instead of putting faith-filled words there by saying, " God's power is enough to keep them; God's power is enough to hold them; God's power will deliver them, and they'll not fall; I believe they'll stand."

They have been deceived by the evil one to tear down what God was trying to build by the words of their own mouth.


I want you to notice that Jesus new there was power in His words. When He spoke to the fig tree, it withered and died. Now notice, in verse 22 He said," Have faith in God." or have the GOD KIND OF FAITH. Then in verse 23, Jesus stopped long enough to tell His disciples how the GOD KIND OF FAITH works.

You and I need to know how it works. If you have faith in your heart, it is the GOD KIND OF FAITH. The Bible says in Romans 12:3, "...God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith. " And it is the GOD KIND OF FAITH. He didn't say " a measure"; He said "the measure.
It is the same measure everybody got when they were born again. The problem is, some haven't developed it.

The WORD tells you how to develop your faith. "Faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God" (Rom. 10:17) The literal Greek says, "Faith cometh by reoprt, and that report comes from God." Hearing what God said will build faith inside you, because He's able to perform His every declaration.

Now, Jesus tells you how to apply the GOD KIND OF FAITH and get it to work. Perhaps you've tried it in all kinds of ways. You've tried it by bombarding the gates of heaven, by just praying it over and over and over, and you found that didn't work.

Well, let's see something that does work, and let's act on it. Here is what Jesus said: "For verily I say unto you, That whoseoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith" (Mark 11:23)

He didn't say just the things you say to the mountain. He said "THOSE THINGS WHICH HE SAITH"; everything you say. You must watch what you say. You have to believe that those things that you say- everything you say-will come pass.

That will activate the GOD KIND OF FAITH within you, and THOSE THINGS WHICH YOU SAY WILL COME TO PASS. He said, HE SHALL HAVE. He didn't say he had it then, did He? He said, "HE SHALL HAVE WHATSOEVER HE SAITH." One of the translations says, " He shall have whatsoever he is saying." In other words, it shows he's continually saying that.

The Bible says, "Let us hold fast to the profession (confession) of our faith..." (Heb. 10:23)

It didn't say, "Hold fast to your prayer." When you hold fast to the prayer, you're holding fast to your problem, because most of the time you've prayed the problem. Turn loose of the problem and get hold of your confession. Quit praying the problem. And start saying the answer. "For verily I say unto you, whosoever shall say unto this mountain be thou removed..."

When you prayed and said, "Lord, the mountain's getting bigger; it's not getting any better. I've prayed, and it's not working out," you were holding on to the problem. You haven't got to the answer. You're not there yet; you are still too involved with the problem.

The answer is in the confession. The answer is in believing and confession what the WORD says. THE WORD SAYS THAT IT WILL BE REMOVED AND CAST INTO THE SEA.

We should continually affirm and confess this; " I thank God, though it looks like the mountain's getting bigger, in THE NAME OF JESUS, I see it removed by the eye of faith. BY THE EYE OF FAITH, I SEE IT REMOVED."

There is creative power within you. Learn to use it wisely.

NOTE: I realize this may sound weird to many. The next chapter is called 'Christian Sense' and deals with how to make this sensible :)

Do not fear

I haven't been interested at all in writing about politics. For one, we don't have any news channels, or TV channels period, so unless I seek it out online, I don't know a lot about what is going on. My mind is just too busy with other stuff to even think about.

I personally am very surprised that Obama won. I didn't think it was his time yet. I was pretty stunned frankly. People are so blinded to the truth.

I am not worried about myself, rather I am sad for the blind Americans that voted for him. If there was ever any doubt about the state of our values and morals as a country, it's very evident now what people care about. Themselves.

My husband is quite upset, and I told him, people who are God-less have no understanding of real value or truth. Moral relativism- you can have your truth and I can have mine; Hedonism-if it feels good do it; Humanism-man is god and that's it; Atheism- there is no God or higher authority, therefore no basis for truth.

Go back and read my posts about the History of Thanksgiving, and ultimately the history of the nation. They knew how much freedom cost; they completely understood what must happen in order for true liberty to be maintained. They fought for it, they had lived in religious persecution they fled and paid for our freedoms with their lives.

What about my grandfather, a pilot in WWII, who risked everything so that evil and tyranny could not win? Was it all for naught? Do people not see that freedom isn't free? We barely have freedom of speech anymore as it is, much less after the President brings about his 'changes'.

But you know what? We are not by ourselves. We have the Greater One living in us; God is in control, and we are living the most exciting time of all, the end times. It's so obvious now- we will get to see Revelation in action :)

No Christian should be worried- read and pray Psalms 91.

"A thousand may fall at your side and ten thousand at your right hand, but it shall not come near you. You will only look with your eyes and see the reward of the wicked." (somewhere in Psalm 91)

We can all pray that Obama's heart be changed- God made Nebuchadnezzar think he was a cow for seven years to get his attention, surely He can help Obama to make right choices for the country. All things are possible to them who believe.

Photo Shoot

I took some pictures yesterday for a new profile pic since I've changed the hair, again. Anyways, which do you like the best? I can't decide...

I am not trying to look, er, you know, I was just trying to get all of my big hair in the picture.

***All images are clickable

November 3, 2008

Night before the Election

I've avoided talking about politics for obvious reasons. However, it being so close to the election and all, I got this in an email and thought I would share with you all.

Twas The Night Before The Elections

'Twas the night before elections
And all through the town
Tempers were flaring
Emotions all up and down!

I, in my bathrobe
With a cat in my lap
Had cut off the TV
Tired of political crap.

When all of a sudden
There arose such a noise
I peered out of my window
Saw Obama and his boys

They had come for my wallet
They wanted my pay
To give to the others
Who had not worked a day!

He ed up my money
And quick as a wink
Jumped back on his bandwagon
As I gagged from the stink

He then rallied his henchmen
Who were pulling his cart
I could tell they were out
To tear my country apart!

" On Fannie, on Freddie,
On Biden and Ayers!
On Acorn, On Pelosi"
He screamed at the pairs!

They took off for his cause
And as he flew out of sight
I heard him laugh at the nation
Who wouldn't stand up and fight!

So I leave you to think
On this one final note-

Weekly Plans

I am not leaving 'blog land'. Blogging is the one safe outlet I have, as there are MANY people we haven't told about the move yet. And they don't read my blog :)

Has anyone ever heard of Canton, TX First Monday? Well, it's like a GIANT craft fair that happens the first of every month in a town nearby. I rarely ever go because it is so crowded and so big. I went with my mom, sister, cousin and friend Saturday morning. We walked for 5 hours and only made it through two of the buildings, which is about a quarter of the whole thing. They had the neatest stuff- some of it junk that they made into something really cool. I was lingering over the stand with all Texas themed Christmas ornaments...will be making a Texas tree in Michigan soon...

Anyways, my dogs (my feet) were crying by that afternoon, LOL. Yes, that is a Texas-ism- people are gonna think I'm nuts in Michigan.

My husband and I are in such a weird state right now. We're not sure how to go about our normal routines, not really being able to plan for the things to happen here or up there. You know people are trying to plan Thanksgiving and Christmas with us, and it's so hard for me to tell them anything because I don't know if we'll be here. Yet, I can't really plan for anything up there, because we don't know when that is going to happen. We are feeling restless and kind of stuck.

So, we decided to do what has to be done regardless of if we move now or not. Which is, DECLUTTER! So, that will be my focus. I will do quick cleans, laundry and cooking and a little sewing (gotta finish that quilt and some dresses I started) but the rest of the time will be devoted to downsizing stuff. This way we have focus and motivation to complete it.

So, on the agenda this week:

Sort through all toys ruthlessly
clean out all closets
clean out all cupboards
finish some sewing projects
clean the van-scary!

Also I have a few recipes to try-today will be English muffins, tomorrow a new bread recipe and Friday a healthy ice cream recipe. Not to mention the daily cleaning, laundry, cooking etc.

I tried my hand at grinding my own oats for oatmeal last night. I just ground it till it looked like what I buy at the health food store (Bob's Red Mill Scottish Oatmeal) and then did my usual overnight soaking with kefir. It turned out good- a little coarser than the other, but otherwise it was the same. I really want the grain mill attachment for my kitchen aid mixer, but I'll have to save for it.

I am going to do this thing:


B-fresh ground soaked oatmeal with natural sugar and cinnamon
L-leftover mashed taters and lentil stew
D-chili beans, rice, salad


B-cream of wheat (homemade, fresh ground) and English muffins with butter and organic jam
L-pb&j sandwiches, baby carrots
D-tuna casserole, corn (from frozen) and salad


B-breakfast burritos and fried potatoes
L- out (shopping day)
D- chicken parmesan, spaghetti, salad, apple crisp


B-baked oatmeal and yogurt
L-egg salad sandwiches, apples
D-ham and cheese hot pockets (homemade), tomato basil soup


B-eggs and toast
L-English muffin pizzas
D-steak fajitas (found on sale!) with chips and salsa; pumpkin pie ice cream


B-waffles and ham
L- leftovers or sandwiches
D- scalloped potatoes and ham, fried apples, fried cabbage

B-oatmeal and toast
L- at mom's
D- leftovers

Just baked the English muffins- one fell on the floor, so I uh, just went ahead and ate that one :) They're good, could use a little more salt, but it made a bunch and I had enough dough leftover for a lunch pizza one day. They look more like biscuits than the english muffins in the store...

I will shop for the groceries for the rest of these meals on Wednesday- I have enough food till then. Lately I've been buying pepper jack cheese because we really like it now- well, I mistakenly bought some called habanero cheese. Let me tell ya, habanero is the truth! I tried eating some melted on a garden tomato this morning- YOUCH!!! HOT!!!!

From now on I will check ingredients before buying :) I like hot things, but not that hot.