Thursday, September 30, 2010

Thankful Thursday

This week I have much to be thankful for. One a bike that was stolen from us was returned, it was not returned undamaged but I am hopeful that we can fix it. This pleased my son Zekaryah very much as it was a gift from Angel Tree last year to him for Christmas. Second on the same note Zekaryah's grades continue to improve. I was very impressed to see him score an actual 90 on his PREAP Math test, and a 100 on his 5 science project combo. Very good work!
The younger two have joined track practice, that seems to be going well.
I continue to work in Mekenzei's room. I thought I had the floor completely sanded but Paul felt it still needed some more work so...more to be done I guess.
Tshirts arrived so I can start the two new orders I had gotten a couple weeks back. I am excited to see them become quilts. I hope to get them in the mail next week if all goes well.
The most important thing this week is today I go to get fingerprints done in hopes that I can sub teach here in the local district. It was expensive- $51 to be exact. However, I know in time if I can get a couple of jobs it will pay for itself. I am a little worried as to how I will pick up kids by 4 but I know God has a plan for that.
So today I have leaned on some verses..

Psalm 22:19 (New International Version)

19 But you, O LORD, be not far off;
O my Strength, come quickly to help me.

Psalm 70:5 (New International Version)

5 Yet I am poor and needy;
come quickly to me, O God.
You are my help and my deliverer;
O LORD, do not delay.

Psalm 86:5 (New International Version)

5 You are forgiving and good, O Lord,
abounding in love to all who call to you.

Psalm 54:4 (New International Version)

4 Surely God is my help;
the Lord is the one who sustains me.

I hope you have had a very blessed week.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Menu Monday

I have not been good about posting my Menu Monday.. So lets see if we can get in the habit again
I found a really pretty autumn leaf menu planner that is very simple from
I find that with coupons and being able to stock pile I might start planning a couple weeks at a time. If I can get a good deal on meat this week.
So what's cookin?

Soup and Sandwiches

Homemade French Bread Pizza,
pineapple upside down cake

Pork Chops-lightly grilled,
mashed potatoes,
butternut squash

Chicken (ours rolled with spinach and mushrooms),
green beans and brocolli,
crescent rolls

Spaghetti (ours with a meat, spinach, mushroom sauce)
salad and some kind of veggie
Texas Toast

Cheese (ours with spinach) enchiladas,

BBQ something- Paul's night to cook.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Thankful Thursday

I am very thankful for the following verse today. I discovered it in my devotions today. What a comfort it is to read these words.

John 15:16

16You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

How much more of a victory is there than this? I mean to know that we are chosen by God to go and bear fruit. I am thankful that I in return did choose to also have him in my life. To have him as my Lord and Savior. To serve him and no other.

I am also thankful this week for family. I enjoy that every night we have dinner right when the kids get off the bus. That the kids and I sit, eat, have conversation and then we begin the nightly ritual of homework. It might get a little more complicated come next week when the younger two begin to run track on Tue-Thur afternoons. It will require me to go pick them up at 4 pm every afternoon. I am so blessed to have found this free program for them. It is running cross country with the Jr High kids. Both the younger two are highly interested. It will require me to plan meals ahead and in any way possible have them cooked and ready to eat when we get back. Another blessing is that we don't live all that far from the school.

This week I have seen the blessing of the internet in our home, more so then normal. Jakob has been a hog on the internet. His homework often requires hours and hours of internet use as he pours through maps and information for his AP human geography course. It is so much work. Open House was a blessing this week as I discovered a book that he can add to his coursework that will help him possibly score a 5 on the AP test at the end of the year. I know most students only score a 3= but well we all know Jakob. It will also help him on the tests that his teacher gives as she stated that her questions are pulled from this book- to better prepare them for the test. He found himself very discouraged when he missed 7 of the 25 questions. He said he could only score a B on the whole test and that is if his Essay portion was any good. study is the motto this year.

I am thankful that Zekaryah continues to try with his classes. He is in two AP courses and they are both very difficult. I have been on him to write in his journal every day. Just a paragraph or so to better his writing skills, and thinking skills for that matter. I have also started this week to "make" him read a 300+ page book that is a little difficult for him called Midnight and Charlie Bone (I think). He got through the first 8 pages pretty well, with some help- I am making him read out loud so that I can follow along. He then fussed over reading to page 10. I was firm in stating he would read the next two pages or just shower and go to bed. Since it was only 6:30 I felt my demand was pretty reasonable. He finally did give in. I am glad that I remained firm. Also thankful his dad backed me up in my request. Sometimes that does not occur.

Mekenzei is doing well. She is learning to juggle 3 Ap courses, Volleyball and some other things. She is working so hard. Last night she helped with making blueberry waffles. I enjoy having her in the kitchen and her learning some skills they do not get at school. We enjoyed the evening by reading a book called Boys are like Dogs- or something like that. It was required by school. She had fallen behind. More because she did not realize there was a due date for the book- so she got a lesson in Paying Attention and writing things down. Then the due date she had as of Monday got moved up a day so it made 150 pages my responsibility to read out loud so that she could have it done on time. Where then she got a lecture on making sure she does not do this again because I only bail them out once every 9 weeks so they have to choose wisely.

So Overall this week has been very good. I feel like I am settling in spirit wise. My heart hurts a little less every day with my mom now gone. I am thankful that this week- tomorrow there is a craft night at my cousins house. His wife is the host. Another woman will teach the craft. I am hoping to get supplies so that I can make my own and then have it for either my bedroom or Mekenzeis- I am trying to decide still.

I have done no quilting this week which is odd, but with no orders that's to be expected I guess. So I am looking forward to the shirts that should arrive in the next couple of weeks to remedy that situation.

So what are you thankful for this week?

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

WordFilled Wednesday

Thoughts to ponder- I grab this from my reading today as I reflected on what it meant.
"The Bible is like a love letter from God to humanity. The scriptures reveal volumes about God, His character, and His attributes. We'll never know God as well or as intimately as when we spend time in the scriptures."

I think this is very well said. Its so important to spend time daily in the Word of God. I can tell when I don't. I find little things bother me more. I find that I have more doubts and worry. When I am in the Word I know that the Lord is going to provide. That he will wrap me in His arms when I need a little more that day. That He will light our path.

Yesterday my husband met with his brother in law after work. They had gone over to a man's house, that his brother in law knows to buy out his business. I can't explain the business, rather just simply say that its something they both think they will be able to do. So much so in fact that once it is up and running they want me to help during the day. It is not something that is going to make us rich, but it is something that would help provide a little extra income- to hopefully help with things like braces, food on the table, school supplies etc. It gave me some hope, even though at the same time I felt discouraged.
This morning I woke up knowing that I needed to seek the Lord for wisdom. My husband already helps with a side job of grinding drill bits. It helps us when the extra work is available. He also stays after work as he can to pick up overtime. There are a few other odds and ends that occur. I find times like last night when he gets home really late very discouraging. The kids were all in this mood- homework was not going well, I was incredibly tired- which seems to be the norm lately and had a pounding headache. All I wanted was for him to come home.
My prayer is that we find a way to balance it all. A job for me does not seem plausible at this point. I keep trying and the door continues to remain shut. Quilts come in but not to the point that it is really a huge benefit. More like a small relieve from time to time. I am not even selling one a week which is where we really need to be.
We came to the realization a couple months ago that maybe I am not supposed to "really" work outside the home. The kids demanding schedules are so much effort on my part. Sometimes I regret putting them all three in AP courses. However, that being said, I know this too is only temporary and that they will be hopefully better for it.
So as this knew adventure begins we pray for guidance, wisdom and health. We also pray for patience and will continue to seek HIS help in our lives.
Today I am leaning on Matthew 7:24-27- the parable about building your house on a strong foundation.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I have been studying creativity these past couple weeks. How God wants us to use our talents and treasures to impact the lives of others. Stories such as people figuring out how to donate shoes to lower income areas in other countries, artists due to circumstances such as Joni Eareckson Tada who had a horrible accident and found herself turning to the Lord- then to begin drawing using her mouth and teeth since she was unable to do so with her hands. There are many other stories just like hers.
I am always impacted by stories of creativity. I find that I try hard to use the talents that the Lord has given me. Not always all of them I admit. For example I would say as a child music was my primary talent. I sang, played a couple of instruments, did some acting etc. I enjoyed it immensely. Went to college to still pursue some music to then get married and set is aside.
As an adult with children who are in middle and high school years, I have found a great talent and desire in my quilting. Originally it started out as a way to make things for my children, friend and family and over the last few years it has become a small business that I love. I am not always very patient with the Lord on its growth. I find that I love the business when it is fast paced and moving. When money comes in to help us pay for things like children's clothing, food on the table, new eyeglasses. Our biggest need right now is braces for our oldest.
Sometimes I think it is so easy to loose site of the bigger picture. The reason that I love this creative talent in quilting- that is to embrace others. Create something for them that they love, something that their loved ones or themselves might use, to cherish and have as a memory. I think that is the reason that I keep going with the quilting for others- in the way of making profit. If I had my way I would do them all for free because it is something I truly love.
In my reading for today I stumbled across a verse that spoke to my heart
It is from Colossians chapter 3:12
"Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience."
I can see how this verse could apply through so many aspects of our lives. How we help friends in need whether it be that they are having a bad day, maybe a relationship ended, a job is hanging in the midst of unknown etc, or even down to issues with health, depression.. you name it.
So often we become so busy with ourselves that we forget to look to the needs of others. To clothe ourselves with things like compassion and patience.
I know this week I find myself very short on patience with my middle son as the oldest and youngest have numerous homework assignments. He has been very tired lately and a little bit of a pain to be honest. I found myself very short tempered yesterday over something that generally I redirect, yet because of my pressured evening I found myself being very short, very non compassionate or patient with his needs and in turn I hurt his feelings something terribly.
So I am thankful for the reminder of this verse and hope to seek his forgiveness for the misguided direction of my stress last night.
In all areas we should clothe ourselves like commanded in Colossians..whether business, personal or pleasure, its something so simple yet how easy it is to forget.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Thankful Thursday and Happy Birthday Mom

Today did not start out so well. I will be the first to admit. I did not sleep well knowing that my moms birthday was today. I was so incredibly sad. Been crying a lot the last couple of days. I just miss her so much. Its strange that the emptiness has grown recently and not decreased. I think part of it is being alone so much. Makes me think way to much. In some ways though I am finding that may be God's Plan. To allow me time to heal, to think, to meditate, to turn fully to him in this time. Even though I prayed that she would finally go in those last 24 or so hours, it is not easy to realize this is it, at least until I one day go to heaven and can see her again.
I am so thankful for the time I had with my mother. Things were not always easy. We really had some rough patches. I think more than anything because she was so young and also just the fact that I am super independent. I also tend to think way to much and that caused us much distress.
I am so thankful that she always expressed how wonderful I did at being a mother. She never ever questioned that once. I take comfort in that knowledge, as I strive so hard to be the best I can for my children.
She was very supportive of my quilting. She truly believed that one day I would have my own company with my own employees and that my calling to teach would be in quilting and crafts. I used to laugh at her but I can see it. My quilting business has grown. Just today I find myself so so thankful when I get an order for a quilt- that I just posted yesterday! I had made the quilt for another customer, who I do not know- online. I had just finished it and posted the pictures and today- on my mother's birthday a woman bought that exact quilt for me to make for one of her two children- with a request for details on how to purchase a second quilt for her other child. How Wonderful! I still have four other inquiries I am waiting on- not always so patiently I admit.
God's timing is amazing. I was so down today- went and met my husband for lunch because my two friends had plans today and could not do anything. Even though I only had 45 min with him it was nice that he spared the time from work. I wanted to pick up flowers on the way home but i felt so guilty about it, so I passed on it. I come home check my ETSY account- and there was a new order.
It made me smile, knowing that the first thing I would have done- Call my mom. I would have been so excited she would have prayed a thanksgiving to our Lord and we would have awed in that moment. So instead, I played her favorite songs, sang along and praised the Lord for his continual support in my life. Knowing that she would have been so grateful to just hear my voice singing and spending a quiet hour with her.
I still pray for my dad, as I can't imagine the pain he is still enduring. I pray for my brother, sister and grandmother also.
For now I will remain thankful in today, not worry about tomorrow and Praise God for the time I had with her, even if it was much too short.
Psalm 139:13
For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb.

Job 1:21
and said: "Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart. The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised."

Proverb 23:25
May your father and mother be glad; may she who gave you birth rejoice!

Psalm 71:6
From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother's womb. I will ever praise you.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Do Not Worry about Tomorrow

So often we forget the simple lessons of the bible- one that we should remember to apply daily. Trust in Him always because He will lead your path. It's so easy in the times we live to get discouraged and find ourselves drowning in worry. Lack of money, maybe a job, relationship problems. Yet if we trust the Lord with the simplest of things- He will provide- we will not go hungry or lack of the things that we actually Need...want however maybe a different story. :-)

I find myself trying very hard not to worry about tomorrow. As orders for quilts are slow, as a job has been absent for nearly a year now. Somehow we continue to make it by God's Grace and Mercy. I am ever so thankful to see him present in our daily lives. Just this weekend I had a gift card from Verizon- as Paul's phone had gone out while I was at my dad's this summer and he had to replace it. It was for exactly $50. I found myself needing Paper towels, toilet paper and Cascade. Kroger had some coupons to load to their store card- then I had a paper coupon for each item for $1 each. So after my purchases of things such as yogurt, cereal, granola bars, lunch meat etc. My bill came to just over $40, the org total was $80 something. I was ever so blessed as I had forgotten about those Kroger loadable coupons, as well as the extra savings from Shortcuts and Cellfire to go along with my Quaker, Yoplait and Hillshire savings by paper. This was an example of my prayer for help with our weekly budget in the site of needing paper products which often times become so expensive and double your bill. It was an example of the Proverbs 31 woman- one who researched, clipped and found the best deals- like two cans of beans by Old El Paso at 34 cents after using a $1 each can. It was also a prime example of faith. I knew that I did not have to worry about the next week. I could plan a little but that when groceries are needed again- HE WILL PROVIDE A WAY..

So I actively try not to worry, instead I try really hard to trust and to have faith, because that is what HE ASKS of us daily. So if there is something on your heart that worries you, take it to the Lord in prayer and Lay it at HIS FEET.

Matthew 6:25-34 (New International Version)

Do Not Worry

25"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life[a]?

28"And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? 31So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' 32For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Some Recent Quilting

My friend made me these blocks a while back. I never did figure out what fabric I wanted then I was in Joann's this summer and saw this.. I loved it- then I thought of these blocks, so today I finally put it all together. I didn't have enough of the flannel to piece the back and the sides were just barely to wide so- will have to wait and do the quilting another day.
This next quilt I love. I picked the fabrics when my mother in law Joyce was alive. I had begun to make a quilt out of them, and got frustrated and started over making some random nine patch blocks that I then cut. Then I never could bring myself to finish it. So I sent it to my friend Des, she made a wonderful quilt then sent me some blocks back. I had made the quilt top a while ago but never did finish the quilt itself.
My mom had mentioned to me this summer to just give the stippling a try. In honor of her this week I did just that. I pinned it all and did a very wide stipple with some pretty variegated thread. I love the way it turned out. I also love the sage green cotton I chose for the backing. I have not decided what to do with it yet. I had thought of a couple people to gift it to, but for now It will just sit finished. Its nice to get all these UFOS done. Esp since I really wanted something to do and I don't currently have any quilt orders.

Be a Light unto the World

Matthew 5:14-16
14"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. 15Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.

I have been doing a lot of soul searching the last couple of months. Loss is difficult. I feel pressure at times as I am typically very positive and generally try to look to the needs of others. Its been rough not having my mom but even more so not being involved in anything this year. Last year I had the school- which I served as Vice President. I also worked with the choir two days a week, science club etc. I was constantly out and about. Working with other women and children and being fulfilled in doing so. This summer was pretty quiet. I didn't see very many people at all and at the close of it lost my mom. It left me pretty empty inside.
I had worked really hard at getting a book of Tshirt quilts finished. One of which I am very pleased with now that I have the final product in my hands. Quilt orders really slacked off since this summer and money has gotten really tight again. I continue to apply for jobs that are available in our school district and fail to even get an interview. It is very discouraging to have a desire to serve and continually "get turned down".
It made me really look inside myself. Esp this last one as I worked in the library- giving my free time to the Book Fairs and other things. I really felt that job, being part time would be the answer to our household friends. I enjoy the librarian and the staff at the elementary school. I felt there would not be a conflict of interest since my children no longer attend the school- yet God has other plans, because I didn't get the job, never even got an interview.
I have had some interest in my quilts, no real orders though- just inquiries. I found that one problem in my life is not so much that I am not social outside of our home but that I forgot about my quiet time with our Lord. I have been so caught up in my grief and non understanding of why the answer is constantly no or not now...that I neglected those precious moments in my day.
I was/am still praying, seeking him but the moments that are not interrupted- the moments were I read his work and work in my book- I had set them aside.
I found it interesting that the book I had been working through prior to her death is from Women of Faith- Discovering Joy in Your creativity.
What an ironic thing. I don't feel joy right now I will be honest. I more have to make it. I have to look for it. I don't think anything is wrong with that. I feel that God gives us steps to work through in dealing with grief. Loss is interesting. I have lost three grandfathers- all of whom I knew very well. Lost two great Grandfathers and a great grandma, as well as an uncle- all of whom I knew but not as long in my life- still important though. This loss just doesn't quite compare.
It has been a blessing for our family in that we are trying to live more for today. Finish things we start. I have so many projects that are undone. I saw that when I was in my parents home. How many things my mom had started that will lay unfinished. It saddened me. She always thought there will be a tomorrow, and now that will not come- at least not in a human way. So being the week of her birthday I have set out to remedy that for myself. To remember we are to be a light to others. To get back to the basics- what life really is about and to finish up some projects just in case for me there might not be a tomorrow.
One project was a quilt I had finished a while back- just the quilt top. It was so pretty. I was terrified to quilt it. More because I wanted to stipple the quilt and I am still learning how to do that. Its a bigger quilt then I am used to for that type of quilting, but it turned out so wonderfully. I have no idea what I will do with it yet. I had intended to give it away, now I am not sure. Not sure that someone would purchase it, so for now it will sit- but sit finished. Today I started working on some quilt blocks my dear friend Des sent me some time ago. I have that quilt top about half way done. I am very happy that I am taking this week to remember my mom, honor her and remind myself to just be a light to others and God will continue to fill the light within me.
So what have you left undone lately?