Wednesday, December 30, 2009

"God often takes a course for accomplishing His purposes directly contrary to what our narrow views would prescribe. He brings a death upon our feelings, wishes, and prospects when He is about to give us the desire of our hearts. " ~John Newton

I read this quote above and it really speaks to how I'm feeling and what perhaps is being brought to me by the Lord right now.

Since the Fall, we've been waiting on a home and the eventual purchase of it and have found it to be so slow. I have struggled with feeling so anxious, frustrated and down. My desire is for us to move from this small, two-bedroom apartment into this home that we really like. I find it difficult to function with the lack of space and the clutter. I have become quite discouraged, even to the point that getting into the Christmas spirit was very challenging indeed.

And yet, the Lord has always provided for our needs. He knows what is best for us and though my desires are what they are, He will bring to pass what it is He desires for us! It is often slower than we wish and sometimes different than what we would plan for ourselves...but, it is none the less the best for us.

As I write this, I realize that I need to fully surrender all aspects of my life, desires to Him, the One that brings all things to pass. I must surrender this apartment, the home we desire, our finances, the clutter and disorganization, and the raising up of our children all to Him. I need to open up to His work and His will for my life...even if it means letting go of what I think is best. I pray that my feelings, wishes and prospects will fall away and be replaced with the Lord's Will and desire for my life.


Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour,
which is Christ the Lord."
~ Luke 2:11

I want to wish all of my dear friends a very Merry Christmas! May you remember the great gift our Lord and Saviour gave us. May your day be full of joy and blessings and peace!

From my home to yours...Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Just wanted to pop in and say that I've updated the Poetry Corner! I'm loving the Christmas Hymns right now :-)


Wednesday, December 16, 2009

8 Months and Projects Completed

Before one knows it...the months slip by and suddenly you have an 8 month old child on your hands. I find it really challenging to let her grow up...though I really have no choice ;-)

So at 8 months Rowan is sitting up fairly solidly and she is making the cutest sounds and bubbles. She also has two teeth! Rowan is still the jolliest baby I have had and goes to sleep quite nicely for me. Now, if she would just sleep through the night!

And in the midst of much Christmas sewing and prep, I have finally finished the above little outfit for Rowan. I will make a confession...this was supposed to be made soon after she was born, it was begun in...July. Yep, I only just finished this last week..sigh..

This is actually three pieces...the bonnet, slip dress and bloomers. I made the dress first (all by hand) with THIS pattern(slip view, with alterations for the shoulder closing). I embroidered some birds on it(I shared about this HERE).

The bloomers and bonnet, I made using THIS pattern(views D & E) and just decided to use my machine. Yup, I was tired of sewing by hand.

I really like the bloomer and bonnet pattern. Very simple and I can still get use out of the largest size I think. I do like the dress pattern but I don't think I'm really ready for heirloom quality is assumed you know more than I apparently know ;-)

I really love the way Rowan looks in this bonnet...and I think she does too:-) There are a lot of ribbons...but I like it that way.

Now, I just need to use the rest of the fabric I bought when I was pregnant...and that I bought after and now see a pattern here? Addiction perhaps? Well, anyhow, I have many things I'd like to make for her and the rest of my darling kids. I certainly have plenty of fabric!

And for good measure...just my jolly little rose-bud! She has really gotten quite strong and she is just the happiest little sweet-pea. Yes, I have quite a few different names for her.

Now that "the" outfit is completed...on to mass Christmas sewing! How many days left?!


Finding Joy in the Chaos

I really needed to read this today! I've struggled to find joy in my days a lot this year. I pray that I will find the joy in the midst of difficulty and chaos each day.


Friday, December 4, 2009

A Meme~Because it's Christmas Time and I Can :-)

Mama Hen posted this fun Christmas meme over at her blog and well, I thought this would be fun :-) You know, it is Christmas time and well, wouldn't you like to know more about me?

1. Eggnog or hot chocolate? Hot chocolate for sure, with a hint of peppermint if at all possible..yum!

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? We don't do Santa. Well, we watch shows about him and will read books but we have always told our kids that he isn't real, though there was a man named Saint Nicholas. But we wont spill the beans to your family if you do "do" Santa..I promise ;-)

3. Colored lights on the tree/house or white? I like them both. Usually on the tree though are the colored ones.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Strangely, no..we never have. I'm really not sure why as I like the fun idea. Perhaps when we are actually in our own home we'll start doing it. Of course who really needs an excuse for a bit of kissin' with your fella?

5. When do you put your Christmas decorations up? I usually start decorating the first few days of December. Haven't done much this year though...just not very motivated in our cramped home right now. We don't ever put our tree up until a week or two before Christmas..just like it that way :-)

6. Favorite holiday dish? Well I really enjoy stuffing and I greatly enjoy the Sorenson Salad. I'm really sad if either of these items are missing for Christmas gatherings.

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child? Wow, I don't really remember any big memories. The one thing that does stand out are the stockings my mother made us one year which I modeled our new ones after. I posted about them here and I am making Rowan's this year. I hope my children will have more memories that they cherish than I have.

8. When did you learn the truth about Santa? Well, my parents never told us Santa was real..I never had that shock ;-)

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? Actually we get together with Dan's family Christmas Eve(my family the next day), so yes...many gifts are opened :-)

10. How do you decorate a tree? Well, we have ornaments that we've collected over the years...Dan's mom sent him to our marriage with each ornament he received each Christmas growing up(21 to be exact) and we have since tried to carry on this tradition with our children. Sometimes we can't afford a big tree, so not all ornaments are put out. I also put colored lights on(sometimes white) and then either plaid ribbon or some other simple garland goes about the tree. I usually put up the lights..not sure how I got that job...and then we all put on the ornaments with Christmas music going in the back ground :-) Fun!

11. Snow! Love it or dread it? I'd love it...but, we live in CA and we don't get snow where we are. I think I've been in snow a total of 3 times! It would be neat to have a white Christmas...even if it snowed us in!

12. Can you ice skate?

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? I've had so many things that I nothing really stands out to clearly right now.

14. What is the most important thing about the holidays to you? Being with my family and making traditions and memories that center us around Christ. I want my children to have amazing memories, but most importantly to know the great gift that was given us the day Christ was born and what He did for us!

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert? Well, either Pumpkin Pie or Maple Custard Pie. If I'm lucky, I'll have both ;-)

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
I love for us to go to the live Nativities or Christmas displays that our town has. I also love hanging stockings.

17. What tops your tree? We have a pretty little stained glass angel that we bought our first is 11 years old now.

18. Which do you prefer-Giving or Receiving? Oh, I love to give things and receive things. It is especially fun to give things.

19. Favorite Christmas song? Silent Night, no contest.

20. Candy Canes-Yuck or Yum? Definitely Yum!

21. Favorite Christmas show? I LOVE A Charlie Brown's Christmas, Rudolph the Rednosed Reindeer and How the Grinch Stole Christmas(old cartoon one). We still watch them every December :-)

22. Saddest Christmas song? I think Mary Did You Know is a really sad one...I think it is a Christmas song(though it could be for Easter too I suppose). I love this song, but it is sad.

Feel free to join in! And if you decide to do the meme let me know in the comments!


Sweet Devotion

Thoughts from Liam:

"I want to go to God's house. And I will be a good boy for Him"

"I will run for Jesus."

"Is God's house brown?"

I love this boy! His sweet thoughts are just so wonderful. I pray that he will be an amazing man for God!


**Just a side note: I updated my Poetry Corner with a lovely Christmas hymn...It Came upon the Midnight Clear.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

As tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I wanted to post some things that I am thankful for. There are many things, but a few are most important to me.

~I am thankful for my Lord and Savior who died for me. It is because of Him that I have any hope and that I have joy everlasting. Praise God!

~I am thankful for my children...Fiona, Brenna, Liam and our newest little one, Rowan. They are truly a treasure and a gift from God.

~My dearest husband, Dan...he is so very patient with me and so very loving and good to me. I am so thankful that the Lord brought him into my life and that we have many more years to spend together.

~I am thankful for our home, small though it may be.

~I am thankful for the prospect of a new home...this is something we never thought could possibly happen(and no, there is no new news yet).

~I am thankful too, to live in a country that still allows the freedom to worship my Lord. I have no fear and will gladly proclaim the Gospel!

~I am thankful for all my friends both here and in person. Each one of you has been a blessing in some way to me. Thanks ever so much for your friendships.

"Give thanks unto the LORD, call upon his name, make known his deeds among the people." ~1 Chronicles 16:8

"Praise ye the LORD. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever." ~Psalm 106:1

"In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you." ~1 Thessalonians 5:18

I pray that each of you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! May it be full of blessings and joy and may you each find many things to be thankful for.


Friday, November 13, 2009

What I've been up to...

I can't believe it! I'm posting before another month has sped by..yippee!
I've been trying to get my focus and start preparing for Christmas. Yes, I know, Thanksgiving hasn't happened yet. But, I plan on making our gifts for Christmas again this year and I really ought to be moving...don't you think?
So, I've been checking patterns, making lists, gathering materials and slowly starting my projects. Hopefully, I will get my momentum going here and have time for every thing I want to make.

I also have been making up some baby food for Rowan. I could buy it, but it is much more expensive that way and at least this way, I can see what is in my food for her. I've also found that some recipes they have out there include common allergens for our family and so I have to be careful. I'm sure I'll buy some jars here and there, but I am hoping to make most of what she needs and also have her eating what we eat sooner than later(even if all mooshed up;-)
A week or so back I made up some Pear Sauce. At the time I only had a hand mill. I will just say that this is NOT the best way to puree up a large amount of sauce...I'm just saying...
So, I asked my parents for a blender for my birthday ;-) and they delivered!
On Monday, I baked up some Acorn Squash and then pureed it in my new blender...NICE! Today I decided I better get to the Granny Smith apples and cooked them up on the stove. Again, the blender did a bang-up job on the applesauce..lovely, smooth sauce :-)

(The finished product from this weeks baby food making~in the bag:Acorn squash, in the ice cube tray and small tub:applesauce)

I really enjoy making Rowan's food. I hope she enjoys it too. Next up: carrots :-)

On Wednesday we had a special day that we took off from school and work. It was Homeschool Day at the Discovery Kingdom park(what used to be Marine World). What a blast that was! How can you not enjoy being surrounded by a bunch of (mostly) like-minded folks that do not look at you funny for having 4 kids? It was great. We were able to see most of the animals in the park and enjoy some rides too. We saw the Tiger show at Odin's Temple of the Tiger..very cool and Shouka the Killer Whale(very awesome and Fiona got drenched) as well as the bird show..lovely!

The kids, Dan and I all had a great time. I'm glad we could do it. So, I'll leave you with a few pics from our day :-)

Liam soberly waiting for the adventure to begin. Can't you tell he's excited?

The kids really liked seeing the elephants up close. Fiona was our expert...she could tell that there were both Asian AND African elephants there. Mom and Dad said no, we didn't think so...but the trainer validated our little lady :-) The kiddos wanted to ride the elephants, but it was an extra cost...sorry kids!

Here is the male, white Bengal Tiger diving...only 1 year old and already 300 lbs! Oh my goodness..he was beautiful! By the way, while here, I happened to get to meet one of my bloggy friends, Rebecca! So awesome..only wish we could have talked a bit longer.

And last but surely not least, Shouka the Killer Whale or Orca :-) What a beautiful creature! She is amazing. Fiona sat right up in the "Splash Zone" and got very wet. She didn't mind but I'm glad I moved up a few seats or Rowan(who I was wearing at the time) and I would have been drenched.

This was a great trip and a wonderful opportunity to see the variety in God's creation. He is truly an awesome God and His creation is a testament to His power and might for sure!


Friday, November 6, 2009

Hello and Gratitude Friday

Yes, I'm still here ;-) Another month! Oh well, I hope you all don't mind that I've been a tad absent. It has been a bit hard coming up with things to write about. Easier just to not write some days.

But, I wanted to join my friend Tilly in her Gratitude Friday posts. I like the idea of taking my mind off those negative things that are much easier to focus on and turning my thoughts to those things which I have to be thankful for...which are much more than one might see if only looking at the challenges.

So, I am thankful for...

~A friend that remembers me on my birthday(Thanks Tilly!!!)

~For another year to look forward to in my life.

~For a sweet baby girl with the most kissable cheeks and rosy lips!

~For darling children that work together for a common goal and find pride in work well done.
(and they even made that tower reach to the ceiling!)

~For smiling boys in a creative house. When you don't have a tree house..come up with something else!

The joys of the simple pleasures in life, for creativity without a lot of materials or money, and brother/sisterhood..friends for life..Can't get better than that and I am truely grateful for the blessings the Lord has put in my life!


**Oh, and there hasn't been any more news on the home front. We are STILL waiting on the seller's bank to approve things and then the VA inspection must go through. Please pray for me to be patient and that I will be content as I wait on the Lord's perfect timing. Thanks!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

October Already?!

Honestly, I don't know how the month of September slipped by me so! One moment it was September(though often feeling like August), floating along so nice and busy like and then the next moment...October! Wow! I am now convinced it is officially Autumn.

We've been busy with school, birthdays and just plain enjoying our time together as a family. We've also been continuing the process of looking for a house. We've had some duds and disappointments. We've had to re-evaluate how much we can really afford and what and where we are willing to look for this house. We have prayed and been frustrated and then...

The Lord has seen fit to have an offer we put out be accepted! Now, we are still in the waiting phase, but this is very hopeful! We actually put the offer in without seeing the house except for pics on the web...a bit of faith stretching. The sellers accepted our offer and now we wait on their bank and the VA's inspections/approval.

Last Wednesday we took a drive out to the house to see if it was really going to be what we wanted. We went with hesitation and excitement all at the same time. When I walked in the door of this two-story, tri-level, 4 bed/3bath home I was so very pleased! It has some carpets that need cleaning and some paint in some rooms with questionable paint tastes, but other wise it is perfect!!! For us anyhow ;-)

Until we are definite..I will wait on posting pics of the house(though I must share that there is a room in there with a built in shelf/desk perfect for my sewing room :-). But let me just leave you with a view of my Little Man as he enjoyed the space and front yard...I think he likes this place :-)

But before I really go....Here are some moments from our last month:

My hubby, Dan, and Rowan enjoying a father/daughter moment. The entire time he was there, she kept her little, chubby hand on his face..very sweet indeed :-)

Here is my girl looking very solemn at me. She enjoys playing on her blanket now...of course she is almost 6 months!

And here I am with my sweet girl. The camera mesmerizes her ;-) She is a joy to raise and I am so very glad the Lord blessed me with her. And when folks wonder what I was thinking for having another child...I just praise God I was so fortunate as to have His blessing in this area of my life. Even as I struggle from day to day with patience and frustration, with occasional bickering and bad attitudes...the joys that I see and receive each day vastly outweigh such things! Thank you Lord for my children...may I never see them as a burden!

Hopefully I will not be so long in getting back on to write and hopefully there will be good news on the house buying front!

Blessings to my friends!

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Sunday Rest

"Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name. And every day, in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ." ~Acts 5:41-42

I pray to be so bold in the face of mockery and persecution. As an American I do not suffer much for my faith, but there are times when it is good to stand firm...especially in these days. And who knows when a day may come that we are one of the persecuted. I pray not, but I pray too for the Lord's strength and grace if the time comes and also for those times when I am discoursing with someone that does not believe as I do.

Have a lovely Lord's Day!


Saturday, September 5, 2009

Love this little quote...

“A baby is sunshine and moonbeams and more brightening your world as never before.”
~ Author Unknown

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday Rest

"Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD."

~Psalm 27:14

I find that it is a difficult thing to wait on the Lord. My patience is lacking and my desire for things to move along is strong. Yet, the Lord desires me to wait on Him. And so this verse is especially good as a reminder to wait and that the Lord will strengthen me as I do.

This waiting right now is on a home for our family. It has been challenging to find ones we can afford and that someone has not already swooped in and out bid us or that our loan approval is taking a while..ugh! And yet...the Lord knows His plans for us and so...I wait!

We will be heading out tomorrow to house hunt again in a location we weren't considering before. Perhaps this is where the Lord wants us. I shall wait on Him and see where He leads!

Remember, when things are hard and not moving swiftly to us, to wait on the is surely moving at HIS pace and that is the RIGHT pace :-)

Have a blessed Lord's Day my friends!

Sunday, August 23, 2009

I just wanted to say that I updated the Poetry Corner over on my side bar. I chose a selection from The Children's Book of Virtues, edited by William J. Bennett and illustrated by Michael Hague. This is a lovely book of poems and stories that aid in teaching your children right actions. I really love it!

Hope you enjoy the new selection :-)

But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.

~Psalm 1:2-3

I pray you all have a very blessed Lord's Day!


Saturday, August 22, 2009

I was blog reading this morning and found a lovely post about our ministry in the mundane. It is easy to forget how important our everyday actions...those that seem ordinary...are. But we have a HUGE ministry in the daily things we do for our family.

I think Rebecca often has such great things to share. I love reading her words of wisdom and often find myself convicted or encouraged. Her post really expresses the importance of our ministry...better than I could I'm sure :-) Pop over and read THIS post. I think you will find it encouraging.


Friday, August 21, 2009

4 Months and Conquering Fears

Last week was a momentous week! At least in our household :-) My hubby had Wednesday off and so the kids enjoyed going to the park with him. It is a tad hard for me to go alone with them, so I know they enjoyed it..we don't do it often other wise.

Fiona finally found out how to do this gliding play structure and was very pleased with herself. Finally tall enough and strong enough :-)

Now Brenna amazed me! After years of refusing to go down the slides because she was afraid, she finally conquered her fears! This momma is so very proud of her. I think it is always wonderful when a little one can realize that their fear may only be a product of their own imagination and not because of any actual danger...she finally figured that out now :-)

My big, brave girlie...

And Liam...well, he has no fear!

And once you conquer your think up games to play with your sister. Slide racing anyone?

And the next big thing? Rowan turned 4 months! Can you believe it?! I know, I think I said that last month ;-p But really, the time is flying.

She can hold up her head quite nicely now and just yesterday...she turned onto her side! Watch out...she'll be crawling before I know it!

She falls asleep all by herself and sucks her thumb. Isn't she darling?

She is 18lbs of pure love and adorableness and my sweet love :-)

That's the news at my home! I hope you are all well my friends.


Friday, July 31, 2009

A Little Cuteness

I really have nothing new to post, but couldn't leave you without a little baby cuteness and sneak peak into the little dress I'm making for Rowan :-) I mean...there weren't any pictures of her in the last post...that surely wasn't kind of me, was it now?!

So, first...I just wanted to show you Rowan's sweet feet in her little slippers that I made for her. You know, these ones here...

Aren't they sweet on her?! And look at those darling little ankle rolls! To die for!

And here she is showing off her "tummy time" skills :-) She is so cute, I could just kiss on her all day...

And here she is in all of her drooly glory. She is the Queen of Drool I tell you! Only babies seem to be able to pull off the drool and toothless look, and still be dubbed adorable. And I'd even kiss a matter of fact, I think I did as soon as I took the picture ;-)

Now that Rowan has been blessing us with full nights of sleep and a 2-4 hour morning nap...I've had time to sew on occasion(assuming I'm not falling asleep with a sewing needle in my hand). I decided I needed to finally work on the outfits I'd make BEFORE she was born. So, first up is a little slip dress. I'll tell you more when it is finished, but one of the details is a bit of embroidery. It took me a while to figure out what and where I wanted to place it. After much thought, I chose to embroider two birds holding clover(from an iron on pattern I have) in the right corner near the hem. I haven't really ever done I was very happy with how it turned out. Would you like to see?

You do?!

Oh goodie!

Here it is...

Not the best picture I know..sorry! The clover leaves are in satin stitch and the stems and birds are in back stitch. The dress is a pale yellow and the girls thought orange would be lovely for the birds. I really like the color combo.

I am hoping that I can share the finished product next week. We will see. I decided that we needed bloomers and a bonnet to, it may take a little longer yet;-)

Hope you enjoyed a little wee goodness with me. I sure enjoyed sharing!


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Updates and such

(Liam, Brenna and Fiona waiting for their grandparents at the mall)

Well, since last I wrote we found out that our offer was not accepted on the house we wanted. Oh, really wasn't my favorite anyhow :-) So, now we go back to square one and begin looking again. Hopefully we will be doing so next week.

I'm not sure what the Lord has in store for us, but we are praying that He provides something for us. Things continue to be stressful while here in this little spot with our less than pleasant neighbor. I'm ready for a home of our where my children can...

climb hills,
slide down mountains,
and simply be...

I am a tyrant...and it isn't because I want to be.

On other subjects...Liam continues to give me joy. What a chatty, loving little boy he is. Of course, he hits too(which we are strongly discouraging) and throws little tantrums. But all-in-all he is gentle and sweet. His curls enrapture me and his smile wins me over almost every time.

Rowan is smiling, laughing and putting her head up more and more. Before I know it she will be rolling over. How has the time flown so quickly? I know I ask this on a regular basis;-) This little girl has a smile that reaches her eyes every time and melts my heart. I've been busily working on a little dress for her and I hope to show it to you later this week or early next week.

Fiona is fast becoming a young lady...tall, beautiful and loving. She just can't be almost 10 and "growing". It isn't fair! They just grow up too fast!

Brenna is ever my helper. Constantly willing to fold laundry, do dishes, carry in groceries and love on her sister and brother. She LOVES to sew and she and I are working on a project together. Again, I hope to show this to you all soon. This morning, Brenna and I woke before everyone else(well, not Dan) and snuggled out on the couch for about twenty minutes. We chatted and cuddled. What fun!

I am forever reminded of the joys of my children and pray that I will focus more on the joy of my home and how we can create more peace in it. All too often strife is within these walls. I want peace, joy and love to overwhelm our home and cast out all strife. Of course, this is only possible when the Lord is I pray Lord that you come and place yourself fully in the center of our home and family! Lord come!

May you all find joy and peace in your home today! Find a reason to sit down and snuggle your littles and your hubby...and have joy overwhelming!