peace of my mind

peace I leave you; my peace I give you… Jn.14:27


Leave a comment

Hallmarks of December

image

Our little fake tree, dripping with ornaments and lots of crazy color. I love it!

image

Simple door hanging this year.  Thanks to my boys who keep me supplied with choice sticks.

image

Peppermint puff “crackers” hidden around the house for an advent treat.

image

Candy Cane Bath Salts for Mom2Mom. Lots of crafty goodness that day!

image

Cranberry topiary.  Rubies on toothpicks.

image

Lots of little sewing projects in the works. Little (and quick) is the operative word this year.  New, pretty needles add to the fun.

image

Rainbow of glove options.

image

Keepers girls making candles. We also had a cookie exchange and went caroling to the fire department. What special memories!

image

Luke reading his great rendition of The Grinch.

image

Boy Scout Christmas party outfitted with onlooking  little sibs.

image

Caught a glimpse of these two out of the corner of my eye and had to take a picture. Growing too fast!

image

Mia making corn husk dolls for Thanksgiving.

image

Britty playing with them.

image

Pile on: all except for Piper.

December is a busy and sweet month.  It’s hard to savor it with all of the busy.  Hoping these picts will help me remember some of the simple things we treasure.

Hope to post again before Christmas, but if not:

Merry Christmas!!


Leave a comment

Yes! to extending the table

28:31 day of Yes!
I hated this table when we first saw it. It stood for everything I did not want…utilitarianism rather than aestheticism, imposing rather than sleek. It had an ambiguity to it that I was uncomfortable with at the time. Just how many little people would eventually fit around it? Which by the way, were the same exact sentiments I held for our big, fat 15 passenger van! But it is God’s sense of  humor which lets us come to love things to which we once said “Never!”

2012-10-11_17-09-33_491.jpg

This custom-built conference table became ours out of need and practicality, but over time it has become much more. Yes, it is imposing and indestructible, but I suppose that really is what is needed here. This table is the central thing in our home.  It is where we gather to chat over snacks, do anything creative, play games, and most importantly where we break spiritual and literal bread.

Our new Mom’s group at church recently focused on purposing to make our dinner tables nourish our families’ bodies and souls.  Getting a hot meal on the table is one thing, but getting it there with a smile and intent to minister grace is a whole other objective.

With a bunch of littles through the years, there have been seasons where simply getting regular meals to the table was the first mountain to climb.  Getting it there with a servant’s heart was (and still is) another many days.  I am once again challenged to think about the table’s restorative and instructive nature.  How can I tap into this more?

Meals, etiquette, and fellowship around our table have been works in progress…and ones I need to be reminded to keep aspiring to.  I can remember many nights when they were all small. In trying to teach the art of conversation, we would hand a ball to the person speaking who would then hand the conversation and the ball off to the next.  I have to laugh as I think back on it. Perhaps  it was a little too much like Lord of the Flies at times: “I have the conch!”, still they were overarching goals we were trying to achieve.

2012-10-17_13-12-24_586.jpg

The kids have become better at conversation, though they still have a ways to go. We began to practice formal dinner on Sundays several years ago. I would have the kids set the entire place settings (as opposed to melamine plates and a fork on a typical weeknight) and we would practice passing dishes of food as the kids could manage it. Practicing the mechanics has helped them become familiar to the point that it’s not foreign when it’s actually “go time.”

2012-10-17_13-13-10_690.jpg

“Go time” includes times of hospitality, when we are guests at someone’s house, or… when a camera crew comes to film your family eating dinner–like we did 2 weeks ago. I still think it’s funny, but Kevin was asked to do a video interview for a software company he uses and Yes! they came to our house for some slice-of-life footage…like dinner. I was quite nervous, but also comforted by the fact that this would have not been a good option at one time, but practice makes better.  And it all went better than I had hoped for. Something to shake up life a little bit. So it’s a big Yes! to extending the purpose of the table. Something I will be thinking about more in weeks to come.

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day. Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.


1 Comment

Yes! to crazy requests

18:31 days of Yes!

Birthdays should have a little bit of frivolity.  With a list of  practical needs like coats and dress shoes and backpacks, these kids need a little fun too.

Here is some of the frivolity we’ve seen this week.

image

Balloon Juggling Balls (inspired by this pin)

2012-10-18_17-33-18_85.jpg

Toed shoes that really are completely impractical. At least they were a good deal.

2012-10-18_17-33-08_906.jpg

Happy birthday a bit late! (He was a little indecisive this year since it was No to a cell phone)

image

A unicycle (wrapped in Christmas paper) for a boy who has the right amount of energy for such a gift.

2012-10-18_17-38-53_457.jpg

It may not be long before he is riding and juggling at the same time. Then the circus will be the place for him!

 

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day. Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.


4 Comments

Yes! to them apples

17:31 days of Yes!

Today I said Yes! to some things that have been on the back burner. Namely 2 bushels of apples my sweet mom picked for us from my Grandpa’s trees.  They were almost sitting there too long. Happy to have them roasting and crockpotting away on the countertop now.  Tomorrow my mom is coming and hopefully, we will can applesauce. She has taught me these things and has passed supplies onto me from her own years of putting up–along with any stray jars that come across her path.  I am grateful for the tradition, the smell and the jars waiting for us all winter.

2012-10-17_16-14-14_104.jpg

2012-10-17_16-14-04_308.jpg

2012-10-17_16-16-43_406.jpg

2012-10-17_16-16-56_468.jpg

Of course little helping hands are always welcome!

Here is a wonderful recipe for Apple Peel Jelly I tried last year. It allows you to use every last peel and core worth using to make some mighty good jam. It’s yummy and frugal–two of my favorite things!

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day. Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.


1 Comment

Yes! to family night

16:31 days of Yes!

I know, that’s an easy one…who could say no to family night?

Such a busy fall! We are wrapping up cross country and football for the older boys this week. Tonight we found ourselves with Kevin coming off of a big deadline yesterday and nothing! on our schedule for the evening. Tonight was a natural night to celebrate so we went for a hike and got some pizza.  We like to keep it simple, but hiking and being outdoors is by far, one of my favorite things to do with my family. We all breathe easy in the open spaces and the gorgeous views. And it’s FREE!  Not being able to be outdoors regularly is one of the reasons mid-west winters are so hard.  If we can thicken our blood up enough, maybe we will purpose to get out there in January this year too.

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day.  Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.


1 Comment

Yes! to contending prayer

Source: desiringgod.org via Erika on Pinterest

14:31 days of Yes!

When troubles come it’s my instinct to duck tail and take cover. But instincts aren’t always right.  When faced with troubles with my children (and troubles come to us all), taking cover or hiding till it all blows over doesn’t help them one bit and though it seems like a safe thing to do, it is faithless.  My great weapons against fear are to Stand in the armor of God with the sword of the word and the shield of faith. I must trust that He is able to protect His own for His glory and His name’s sake.  I must be an instrument in the process and obey what He puts before me in a day to do. This includes discipline and correction; encouragement and unfailing love.  Still, the results are His! My role as a helpmeet to my husband and mother to our kids is to stand in the gap, speak truth, remind us what the word says and not to be overlooked… to pray.  This is a powerful Yes!

But from everlasting to everlasting, the Lord’s love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children’s children—with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts. Psalm 103:17,18

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day.  Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.


1 Comment

Yes!…to hamburger cupcakes

12:31 days of Yes!

Today was an easy one: Yes! to hamburger cupcakes!

For our quirky (in an awesome way) Gabe who turns 11!!?!! on Sunday. We did crazy crayons one year among other crazy things.  Why not cupcakes that look like burgers?

Very fun to make and just a brownie in the middle. We were short one brownie, so he plans on asking if anyone is a vegan.

Happy treat day to Gabe! Man, how I need a new camera!

31 days of Yes! is me dedicating to post each day for the month of October (which is a Yes! in itself) and to find one meaningful Yes! in each day.  Over 1200 bloggers are participating thanks to the lovely Nesting Place.