1. What we want most;
2. What we think about most;
3. How we use our money;
4. What we do with our leisure time;
5. The company we enjoy;
6. Who and what we admire;
7. What we laugh at."
1. What we want most;
2. What we think about most;
3. How we use our money;
4. What we do with our leisure time;
5. The company we enjoy;
6. Who and what we admire;
7. What we laugh at."
I rose early this morning, sleep evaded me. The aroma of fresh brewed coffee filled our cabin and an ample cup of the amber liquid was waiting for me downstairs. Simple gfits.... When I returned upstairs to do a bit of work when I noticed a feed pop up. A new blog that has encouraged and inspired me called Living Deliberately. This womans lives a simple life and gives simple positive encouragement. Just as this cup of refreshment warmed me in these wee hours of solitude so did her words. A little gift.
I haven't posted in a while, I know. Our life is still in an upheaval, one the Lord is using greatly to teach us as we move closer to Him. It shows how much He loves us. we could be left to our own devises, but He is pulling and we are aching. We are dirty, He is polishing. The turbulence is gathering us nearer to our precious Lord. A gift.
This month we have rejoiced as Jack and Sage turned a year older. Each year having them is a deliciously precious gift. Sage celebrated her Gotcha Day earlier this month.... 8 years. Two years ago on Easter Sunday Willow Little Flower was handed over to me ( well, I actually grabbed her ;0)
For now, we are still in our Little Cabin in the Woods living day by day, homeschooling, canning, baking, working, praying, waiting, enjoying the snow and a gratifying warm day here and there. Yesterday, as I sat on the porch watching the girls dance near the fire daddy had built, I noticed Piper sidle quietly up next to Sage then gently put her arm around her waist. After a while she dropped her arm and they held hands.... so natural for them. I wanted to race for my camera to capture the moment, but was transfixed by this enchanting act of love displayed by my daughters. A gift.... Spring is just around the corner along with the advent of the most cherished gift of all. His life. I thank Him this morning and always. Do you have gifts you are thankful for today?
Happy 2nd Gotcha Day me wee one.... you are a treasured gift.
peeking in the corn crib
in the morning sun
sisters snuggling and playing
Happy Birthday my cherished daughter
Happy 8th Gotcha Day.... my gift....
Each year the girls dance in the ballet the Nutcracker. Dance is good for them on so many levels such as coordination, responsibility, confidence and camaraderie. Also, learning, teaching and mentoring the younger dancers or helping with costumes ~ it's so much more than just dance.
Cay Harkins , the woman who owns and runs Studio K in Boone , NC is pure magic with children. She has 4 daughters who all dance and instruct. It is absolutely amazing to watch as she interacts with dancers of all ages and sizes. whew.... She built this business on a dream and it is now a thriving dance studio making many children and adults very happy. I know she has blessed our lives. We are so thankful to her.
As I watch this same ballet year after year, I am never ceased to be amazed the care that has been taken to make it interesting and different each and every year. It truly is an amazing feat.
So, I hope you enjoy these few photos I shot from the balcony with only available light --- and trust me there was none ( which means lower quality photos) but still you can enjoy them!
little girls shaking their gifts...
Oh! A surprise toy dancer who popped out of a box
a beautiful, spritely gift once she is wound up.
even granny jumped out of her wheelchair to kick up her heals
Naughty little clock mice.... they steal the show every time. You never know what may happen with 2 and 3 year olds on stage, in a mouse costume ,with a sleigh a nutcracker and sleeping girl. I remember when Sage was a mouse, not quite 3, she laid her little self flat right on the floor.
Mrs. Cay herself continues to dance with her students. She will always be part of them.
I sure do bet she can tell ya if that floor is clean... and with a smile on her face. sheesh I wish I looked that good when I grow up. ;)
my favorite part of the show every year ( besides the mice;) are these snow fairies dressed in white....
they flitter and flutter everywhere, all at once, with wonderful choreography, in time dances with pure white toile skirts,
beautiful harp music and falling snow. It is heaven.....
so dreamy..... so sureal
so lovely...you can feel the emotion I can't wait till Sage is in that part.... I might just cry. (Oh hush)
Sage getting ready to go backstage....
look how I got all that hair up.... mama's guuud.
Sage and Hattie Rose waiting
a little pose
Mrs. Cay says "You must look proud... like nobility"
So they did... and wore it well.
they each knew their steps and twirled their skirts as good as any skirt twirler
Oh.... the composure and form!
Oh! the acting! (Ok I'll be quiet now- but Sage was fabulous!)
who were very entertaining with these ribbons...
And of course Mother Ginger and the little gingers ( she is also called by other names) such fun getting 18 kids under that skirt.
And the dancing flowers.... so lovely
One of Mrs. Cay's daughters ~ Ashely... so beautiful and graceful.
How does your garden grown? ;)
Clara and her soldier nutcracker
yeah, I could do that. I wouldn't look like that doing it however.....
she even looks graceful in black and white.....
A young college student, this young lady is so long , light and graceful it makes you weep.
Now I was shooting up in the balcony so you can't really see the height this guy gets but he is smooth..... smooth like silk....
And then it was over..... Such a lovely night to treasure as we bring Christmas in. The Lord has given his children so many talents to share and use. I encourage you to go out and see a ballet or opera. You will not regret it.
David, wearing a linen ephod, danced before the LORD with all his might, 1 Samuel 6:14
It is Count Your Blessings Monday at Amazing Graze Farm
I have know Marci for some 15 years now and she has been such a blessing and encouragement to me in my life. I have so many rich blessings today..... let me share some with you..
This ~ a collection of books, the book of books, my nourishment, comfort, child raising guide, encouragement and strength, tattered and torn from years of use. It's pages are filled with poetry and stories of love and lust, anguish, darkness, sinners and saints, liar's and lovers, families, heroes, warriors, angels and demons, the beginning and the end. When life is falling apart and the world rapidly moving in new ever changing directions, His Word never changes. It is never added to or taken from. It is rock solid and stands firm when everything else is unstable. The Lord is my greatest blessing as he is the creator of blessings.
My little treasures frolicking outside ~ a blessing from above
this little scoot poot ~ a mischievous sprite of a blessing!
music.... which brings passion and soothes my soul, a life blessing
Nature ~ can you imagine life without nature? What would it be.... but nothingness! God is in nature and always around us. I love it so much, I live in a tree house. ;)
Sharing your blessings and stories can be such an encouragement to others.... So often I am touched by reading what others have been through. What blessings do you have in your life today?
It has been a pleasurably busy month, so much so I thought I might just share it with you.... through photos. Sometimes they say all that needs to be said. We've had sweet visitors from all over, have been playing music, going to parades, sewing little dresses, raising baby bunnies, watching the girls delight in their new baby chicks, and still wondering where the Lord is leading us next. The coolness up here keeps me refreshed and I feel blessed. So..... get ready for dozens of photos and our month through my lens!
Piper, snuggled up in a warm quilt on an chilly morning...
with the newest copy of MaryJanes Farm magazine
My little musicians
Sweet babes in mama's arms
collecting bugs.... a most favorite past time here
my little bug collector
Wee wee..... bon jour
A little school work...
sprouted beans for supper
Fourth of July dresses
tied in the back
Even baby gets a matching dress
Daddy helping Willow who wasn't crazy about the noise and sparklers
watching little ones in their fun
ooohhhh's and ahhhh's
Daddy helping his little one... such joy
the plush of a velveteen rabbit
Long time friends smoochin' on the porch..... awwwww
little friends... Wren and Willow ( don't you just love these names together?!)
Wren ~ little Native Amercian
hmmmm... what could be in the box? the post office called at 5:30 in the morning ...
to tell us "Come and get your....
Chicks!" 26 pullets ~ Black, White, Buiff and Partridge Cochins, Ameraucanas, & Rhode Island Reds
come on little girl... ( that is gro gel on the ground.... I promise)
oh the little sweeties...
Black Cochin ( fluffy feet hen)
Americaunas ( they lay colored eggs)
Hey, what's in the box?
While her daddy and siblings went rafting Lainey and her mommy came to visit us!
She is so beautiful...
Her and Willow are only a couple months apart but Lainey has almost ten pounds on her! She's a big girl!
And a very bright child.... she liked the bunnies. ;)
Little treasures from the east
The Kreuers also came to visit us... and what a time we had!
Mya and Sage played in the creek
Mya's little brother falls off the water fall
Mya's little brother climbs out of the creek...
Mya's little brother is very wet. Boys are such fun...
If you can't beat em', join em'
Mya.... so sweet
Aaron twirls JT dry.... lol
Carrie and Aaron.... this couple has been through so much. They adopted then lost a daughter and are soon traveling to adopt again. Aaron works two job so his wife and children can stay at home. He's my hero of the month.... Their faith in God has remained strong through it all.
Aaron made Willow a daisy ( flower) necklace..... ok weeds, but it still counts. I was impressed!
hmmm, he's good
such a treasure to me
such a gift
diving right into daddy's lap
sharing her weed necklace. ;) Don't you just love father/child pictures
Willow tells Mya all about her necklace
a tired little one
A wonderful father
He pushed them all..
It has been a fun month...... Be blessed!
I don't know about you, but May is always an extremely busy month for us. This May has been particularly full of burdens and blessings. But, I would rather share the blessings. ;) God can take care of my burdens. His burdens are light Matthew 11:30. Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved Psalm 55:22. Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. 1 Peter 5:7 Funny, but at times I think we can actually develop a habit of holding on to our burdens, clinging to them, allowing them to drag us down, when we should be slinging them on the Lord. He is able to take them on without our help.There are so many blessings that surround us if we just open our eyes to see and humble our hearts to appreciate.
So for today, I am casting my blessings upon you.... to show what joy the Lord does bring.
Velvety newborn bunnies
to snuggle and hold
in a little ones lap...
observing our children as as they discover
and explore life...
Music ringing through the house
Little girls mothering their babies
taking the most precious care
tucking them under their arms
covering them with wet kisses
basket full of babies...
Mama's baby ;)
Watching my children painting master pieces to be treasured for years to come
Sage painting Hokusai
The awakening of Spring unto the mountains
Willow's crib mate coming home, safe and healthy
Little Flower ~Willow and Reagan Shai ( Shay) Little Heaven together after a year apart
Tian Tian with her mommy
I'm so glad you are finally here....
Watching my daughters in a whimsical dance around the yard
something only a child will do
Enjoying a little ones silliness
The tranquility of our rushing creek and God's word
Wee ones playing in the rain
covered with mud
giving them a warm sudsy bath,
bundling them in a fluffy towel
nuzzling them in my lap with a song...
Loving , giving Christian friends who have blessed us so richly during this difficult time
Have a blessed May ~ appreciate the Lord's goodness and gifts, enjoy your children, laugh and dance with them, let them play in the mud and sing them a song....
The Lord is gracious an merciful, slow to anger and great in loving kindness Psalm 145:8
There is no joy greater in life than being a mother. Motherhood awards us a most valuable purpose and as humans we need a purpose. Motherhood gifts us with treasures worth more than all the money this world can offer. The stress and struggles of mothering as well as the joys often go unseen. But the dedication and commission (or lack of) of a mother becomes obvious through her offspring as they mature.
This weekend delivered me a special Mother's gift as all my babies were under my roof once more to see Jack graduate from ASU with a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice. Next year he will go off to law school and yet another of my brood will leave the nest. As I awoke this chilly spring morning a smile played across my face as I peeked in at each of my children still asleep... all of them... under my roof. Bliss for this mother. But good things come to an end and I bade farewell to two of my offspring as they returned to their homes.
If you are not a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ , you may not wish to continue with this next section as it is not politically correct by the worlds standards. Born again believers see with different eyes and hear with different ears and these next thoughts are ramblings of my heart to other Christian mothers....
Such ponderings fills my mind this afternoon as I reflect on this memorable weekend, deep thought clouds my soul as I consider Jack's graduation ceremony. It is with humble honesty that I admit disappointment by the absence of any prayer or mention of God. Prayer was a given years ago but, no more. Darwin won his place in the commencement speech, but not once was our Lord mentioned. I can not help but wonder of the Lord's sadness. But, what do we expect when we send our children to godless institutions? I realize there are many prized Christian professors in universities and colleges for young men and women to emulate, and I applaud them. I also realize the limited resources for continuing a Christian education in many areas ( such as ours). I can not in good conscience however, as a believer, encourage my children any longer in this direction. This is our personal family decision and I know many of you are a continuing source of light to some young men and women forging ahead in pursuit of knowledge but , my heart cautions me now. I also understand the need for many to mission themselves in this arena but again, my heart cautions me. In the realm of higher education we will be making different choices for our daughters. Our recent graduate has stayed the course but has not been unscathed by the influence of godless professors. Little tidbits here and there can pull some young men from truth. My eyes may dim with age but my heart become clearer. Do you remember your parents and grandparents saying "Things sure have changed from when I was young." ? Now we are saying it and it is true but in a different way. We have grown away from our purpose and goal of serving Christ first in our lives... in raising godly children for His glory. We are spoiled, demanding citizens who grow in knowledge but decrease in wisdom. We depend on man not God. Sometimes it takes a little nudge to get us going in the right direction again. I have thus been nudged. So as for me and my house, we will strive to serve the Lord and be better stewards of this gift called life. I will go against the grain teaching my daughters to be godly mothers and helpmeet's, cultivating them in the ways of home to better serve the Master. We may live in this world but are not to be of it. Dear Mothers, give great thought of the exposure of worldly things to those little sponges you have been gifted. Plant good seeds and give them plenty of water, sun and attention taking care they don't wilt. Give them your best even when you wear down. Teach them about God morning, noon and night. Talk of Jesus much and of worldly things little.
So, I humbly leave you with this note. Treasure, treasure your children. Mother them, enjoy them, correct them, train them to be productive and teach them to be servants and raise them to love and admonish the Lord.
oh my little baby... did you get hurt? And... didn't I tell you to throw those jeans away??
Colette' ~ my eldest son's girlfriend
David and Colette'
son #3 ;)
then there were 6
I do believe spring has finally decided to grace us here in the mountains. Spring, where nature comes alive after her long rest giving us a perennial supply of delicious inspiration. As I sit here a hummingbird has alighted the colorful feeder outside our window. Come little bird! Come! Thousands of yellow wild flowers and dashes of purple buds cover the fields inviting us to romp and play! How can we say no? So we run outside, a gentle breeze upon our skin, bask in the suns glow and abide in this flowery wonderland 'till we are so tired we fall down into a pleasingly deep rest then awaken refreshed and rejuvenated. We can't wait to get our garden started! I hope you all are enjoying ths divine weather as much as we are.
Taste and see that the Lord is good! (Psalm 34:8)
I love my pink tutu and polka dot rain boots... they are splendid
Willow has her own little style too..
Here mommy... ( i just love this shot) sigh... heaven...
Pickin' wild flowers in a field of yellow
There for you...
My sweet Willow...ooooh I love this child
OOOO... look at this one!
Here mommy.... ( Mama has a VERY large collection of flowers)
ooooohhh a little blue one...
This picture just speaks to me...
little feet running in the grass...
Isn't my big sister amazing...
Doesn't she look swet....
Didn't she look sweet....
a time to rest...
At 3:00 today ( around 3:00 in the morning US time) Willow's crib/orphanage mate Xiao Tian ~ Little Heaven was finally.... finally placed in her parents arms. Mother Teresa said she is very, very sad and grieving so. For those of you who have not adopted a child, this adjustment period can be very difficult for both child and parents. Sometimes a child will be depressed while another moment they may just shut down completely showing no emotion. Each grives in a different way. As I sit with my Willow ~Little Flower beside me I feel so blessed. She keeps looking at Tian Tian's pictures and saying "Tian Tian, Tian Tian" and "Tian Tian sad" . As I hug Willow I am engulfed with tears....tears of joy that her friend will soon be home and tears of sadness for Tian Tian's little broken heart and the grief she is enduring and has had to endure in her wee life. Lord God, these children are so precious and many mistreat them so!
Teresa is very tired and are of course upset that Tian Tian is having such a hard time. I know it will get better and in a few days believe they will see the sun begin to shine as Little Heaven opens up her heart and realizes "Hey, these people aren't bad, they want to hold me and give me tons of attention" I hope she decides to keep them ;), they are great parents! I can not wait to hold her myself and reunite her and Little Flower Willow.
Oh the tears I am crying looking at Little Heaven's face...
Trying to call Xiao Hua ~ Little Flower aka Willow ;)
Beautiful Little Heaven... I bet you are asleep right now and I know when you awake will be confused but know that you are well loved already and your mommy and daddy have been waiting so long for you . You have a sister who is also from China waiting on you as well as another sister and brother. Oh my goodenss you are so beautiful!!! sigh...
Jack ~ 18 months
Four Score and 4 years ago I gave birth to a chubby little boy with jet black hair...... he was the ugliest little baby you have ever seen. ;) But, he was mine and I loved him. That fat ugly duckling has grown up to be very handsome, talented man indeed. Jack is an old soul who loves the Lord. He is one people gravitate towards. In May he will graduate with a BS in Criminal Justice and then is off to law school. I love and adore you my baby boy and am so proud of you. You are a sturdy rock in my life. Be the best you can be for Christ. May the Lord continue to bless you and protect you using your gifts to help his people.
my baby boy
Sage ~ Gong Jia Fang
Seven years ago.... I felt the brush of angels wings as a frightened ruddy cheeked 11 month old baby was placed in my arms. This was one of the happiest moments of my life and I still remember it vividly replaying it over and over in my mind as to keep it fresh. When she was handed to me I felt like I had just been given an extra gift I did not deserve. I had prayed for a little girl for many years and the Lord granted me what I asked of Him. ( 1 Samuel 1:27). Happy gotcha Day and Happy Birthday Sage... you are my dream come true.
Sage after two days with her mommy and daddy
Sage home for 2 months...
Sage and Pingnan mate Jenna then....
Sage and Jenna now ~ raised together in the orphanage and still red thread sisters
Good things come to those who wait on the Lord!
Little Sage has a hurting heart since the loss of her beloved cat ,Stripey. Stripey had renal failure and had to be put to sleep. Her first lesson in death to something close was a difficult one and she cried many tears as she cuddled up next to me in the bed all night long sobbing her heart out. So did I.... I let her know I was right there with her precious kitty 'till the end. I didn't think it would be good for her to watch. She has taken some comfort in her Velveteen rabbit Velveteen. Such a beautiful child she is.... pure inner beauty.
Willow ~ Liu Xiao Hua
A year has passed since a tiny sick 18 month old little girl was handed into my arms by one of the orphanage office workers. I didn't have my family with me to share this great joy, as I traveled alone. It was a quiet relinquishment as she became mine forever. Forever.... such a beautiful word. I was filled with indescribable wonder. How am I so deserving of such gifts?! I took my little treasure back to the hotel to look over. (those who have been there know what I mean) It is like unwrapping a fine treasure... gazing with love into the face of a new child. Yes, I delighted in counting each little piggy and brushing every fine hair, placing soft kisses upon her wee runny nosed face, and gazing into her eyes. Oh! Children are truly gifts for the Lord! Willow is such a carefree happy little sprite. She has such a whimsical spirit and enjoys taunting her sisters as well as making them laugh. I wish I could share her walk with you...no, her actual physical walk. She plods along with a bit of a stomp as she walks. And her run? Her little feet kick out as she runs. I think she puts everything she has into what she does... weather putting stickers on every kitten in a litter, pouring rice on her sister or saying "I luuu ew!" ( translation: I love you) she is an amazing child. To me, she is perfection.
Willow on Gotcha Day evening...
The next morning...
18 months old in the White Swan Play Room
Willow had her dental surgery two weeks ago. All went well and they were able to save her all her teeth. I sat in the hospital praying, asking the Lord to be with my precious gift and guide the hands of those trusted to her care. She is still in pain and we are praying she will begin to eat something substantial soon. Isn't it hard when your child is ill and you want to take the pain and sorrow away but can't? Oh how I wish I could carry it for her. She snuggled against me last night in bed as she always does to read and sing. When she quietly fell asleep I prayed over her beseeching the Lord to grant her the gift of healing and wake up to a painless morning. How I love my babies. Motherhood fills you with such an array of emotions ~ immense joy, fear, laughter, peace, anxiousness, unconditional boundless love, sleepless nights, an appreciation for rest, thoughtfulness, nesting, hope, grace, unbelievable forgiveness, wisdom, patience, weariness, but most of all love unlike any other mankind can ever experience.
As you can imagine, this is a busy (and blessed!) month for us which can put a strain on life. There are many things on my heart... some which are heavy. It is times like this I need to remind myself to seek the Lord first... he will provide us everything else. He will carry my burdens if I let him. (Matthew 11:28) I am waiting to let everyone know where we will be moving.... it is a surprise. ;)
Thank you for all your prayers, emails and comments. They all mean so much to me. If there is anything you need prayer for just leave it in your comment or email me as I would love to prayer for you as well. Be blessed!
March, the beginning of spring! But wait, what... is that... fiercely falling outside my window? Something feathery and powdery.... a blizzard.
I admit it. I want spring. Here. Now. As I sit typing we are having a snowy down pour, flakes as fat as marshmallows I mean to tell ya. OK , maybe not quite that big, but colossal, and alot of them joined by noisy squalls. It's a blustery day! Thank goodness I didn't purchase that "Spring Gardens" magazine the at the store as I may have used it as a fire starter. ;) We have had several nice days here lately and I am grateful. I like to call the photo above Pouty and Poutier. ;o) just kidding. The kids in the photo where not pouting but just in deep thought and conversation on solving the worlds problems. I love this photo.
Come with me back to October, to a warmer time when the trees where showing off their colorful finery. We had an enjoyable visit with Little Pearl who came home in September. She and her family also live in these spectacular mountains, but a bit down from us. Her parents are also professional animal photographers and their home is something out of a spring garden magazine. Bane has made sure their acreage is a studio and has succeeded in grand style. This little haven boasts antique wagons, little garden spots, winding streams, whimsical bridges, docks and alluring flower beds set in various spots around their place....a sanctuary for the eye and mind. I am always amazed at them and can't help but say "Wow, Mountain Man, look at what Bane has done now. " ;} I think women are born manipulators. I personally, feel I am quite gifted in this area which is something I am constantly working to curtail. Ok, back to Little Pearls breathtaking abode. Little Pearl is now called Charis (Care-es) which means grace. She is only a few days older than Willow and are both from Xiamen Island. I remember calling her parents and asking if they had considered adopting again as there were two gorgeous little baby girls where Willow was waiting for us. Charis is a prefect fit for their family. Lyndsay, her older sister, is rightfully protective of her and kept great watch to make sure she was there to help her up when she took a fall. Lyndsay is a striking child... her features perfect symmetry. She is extremely bright and seemed to gravitate toward Sage who is older. I have noticed this in intelligent children....
I got to see Charis in the doctors office last week and was amazed at her progress. She was an unsteady walker when she came home and now is jumping around. I am so happy for her. But what about Little Heaven?? Her parents have been so distraught, trying so hard to bring her home. Oh my hearts aches for them as it has been over a year since they applied to adopt her. Their agency, unfortunately, caused them many delays. Fortunately however, they are now awaiting their TA ( travel approval) to bring Little Heaven, Willow's best buddy in the orphanage, home. They have decided to call her Shai ~ pronounced Shay. I can not wait to see her. We will have Willow~Little Flower , Charis~ Little Pearl and Shai~ Little Heaven in the same little village. Be looking for her story coming up hopefully the end of this month!
Little Flower & Little Pearl.... waiting for Little Heaven
What are we suppose to do with these gourds?
Little Pearl ~ Charis
Our mother's did our hair...
red thread sisters.... little hands
Let's make faces...
Welcome to America Little Pearl
What lovely bright eyes she has...
Charis does the semi splits...
Charis and big sister Lyndsay who look nothing alike. ;)
Nothing like a game of romps...
to make you long for spring
It was so warm that day Sage took of her jumper and ran around in her petticoats
These pictures show just a small portion of their perfectly manicured acreage...
Jeannine and Charis
Well, her teeth look good....
Charis snuggling' with mama
Where'd they go??
Look at this face. Have you ever seen such perfect features?!
Lyndsay and Sage
Little Cutie Charis
I just love baby toes...
let me think....
I want to say to all of you while I am posting how much I appreciate you extremely kind emails and comments Such flattery! I am so humbled. To quickly answer some of your questions: I shoot with Nikon's and several lenses. No, I have never had any classes or special training but I would sure enjoy taking one. Yes, I shoot professionally and did also many moons ago before the digital age. Digital is amazing and anyone can take great photos. Photograph what you love and photograph often. I enjoy shooting old barns , log houses and wood. I also love photographing children... they are so innocently beautiful and inspiring. I would love to write Little Cabin books, and had started to before, but truthfully don't feel there would be a market for that genre. Little Cabin in the Woods is a child's finger play which I will share in another post. My grandmother taught my mother, my mother sang it to me when I was little and I passed it on to my children. That is where the name came from.... and yes , we do have a simple little cabin in the woods. :o)
Again thank you so much for you dear sweet comments. They always inspire me. Please continue to pray for my family as we journey through this trying season of waiting on the Lord. I would also love to pray for you, if you ever have a request just leave a comment or email me.
Little Heaven.... waiting... waiting to come home.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. Luke 2:11 Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.... Luke 2:19
Many of you have asked for some of my music, soooo here it is....you are listening to
When you live in a place that is so breathtaking, just stepping outside can be inspiring. Watching the snow fall this morning as the sun gently rises over the mountains fills me with rejuvenation. My sweet treasures trodding downstairs one at a time as they awaken, all misty eyed, gives me immense joy. The deer, out since day break forging for acorns fills my eyes with childlike wonder. The doe I see every evening crossing through our wood lets me know me she is still around alive and well. Friends both near and far bring me comfort and my family accords me strength and hope. Sitting in our bedroom at night watching the snowfall and peering at the lights from Sugar Mountain.... so comforting... a light in the darkness. A live nativity swells my heart to overflowing with thankfulness. The Word of my heavenly Father which brings me peace and hope. All these are inspiration to this heart.
Mountain Man has had a couple of offers, but we are not yet sure which path we will take. We are waiting, praying and resting in Him. There is no need to hurry when He is keeping us. We know He has plans for us. (Jer. 29:11). I can not tell you how comforting your emails and comments have been...I am grateful for your thoughts and prayers. Please know we are doing fine, resting and waiting on Him! We have had some interest in the Little Cabin and pray the future owner will enjoy it as much as we have. It is also being shown again today ~ the third time this week. We put a lot of heart into this home to create a place where one can come to find rest and feel peace. Our children have had many adventures in the woods and playing in our stream discovering wonderful treasures. ;) We feel quite lucky to have lived here and it will be hard to leave. But seeing it go to family who will enjoy it will make it easier.
Thanksgiving took us to a breathtaking estate of yesteryear decorated to overflowing with seasonal delights. We supped on savory roasted duck, tender farm raised beef and a scrumptious squash bisque. Oh my, it was delicious. Our travels then took us down south...to a place winter has passed by, where the girls enjoyed running in the green grass, searching for pine cones and taking walks with their Mimi. We always look forward to returning home however, to our Little Cabin in the Woods.... a true inspiration to our heart and soul.
How in the world did my mother get her hair so perfect? I sure didn't inherit that from her.
Please stop growing....
Stop I say!
Please stop picking tiny berries off Mimi and Papa's bushes... :)
Surly they won't mind only three... ;o)
We ventured out this blustery, snowy day in search for the perfect Christmas tree. You won't see tree lots here as the Christmas tree farms are in abundance everywhere you go... just choose and cut ! We take pleasure in letting the girls pick out that special tree of the year for our family. It is not usually the one we would choose ;), but they delight in making this grand decision. This is Willow's first Christmas and I could see the questionable look on her face as we ooh'd, ahh'd and pointed while her sisters shook their shot off ,dashing in and out of the trees in a game of hide and seek... what an inspiration to watch them in this dance of life. We then loaded up our tree taking it home where we decorated it quite simply... Jesus was laid in a simple manger in a stable. On the way home we made our regular stop to the General store for some goodies, little eyes spying all sorts of delicious treats and dandies. Our days have been filled with music and secrets.... shhhhh
so many choices, so much time... take your time and enjoy life!
My little tree huggers. Willow: "What are they doing? Strange, very strange"
Can I run too?
hmmm.... what is Piper up too behind Sage?
Now, these are snow clouds...
I know what ya feel like little buddy...
General Store and the old red truck laden with Christmas trees for delivery
What ever happened to penny candy??
You can only have 1 piece. ( just kidding)
The girls and I received a delightful surprise in the mail from a sweet friend who lovingly knitted socks and head covers for each of the girls! How their little eyes shone when they opened the box and discovered these unexpected gifts. There was even a lovely blue and white hat and scarf for me inside! Clara, you are full of sweetness and inspire me so.
Mrs. Clara's yarn works
Little socks to keep little feet snug and warm...
I hope your heart has been filled seeing our journey this past month. It has been an inspiring season this year.... one of surprises and joy. How blessed we are to have the freedom to serve our Lord but remembering His most precious gift ~ Jesus. Our family is reading the historic story of Chrsitmas from the book of Luke as we do each season. I hope to fully concentrate on Him as He truly is my complete inspiration in life.
P.S. Willow has the chicken pox... when it rains it pours... such is life. lol
As the snow covers the ground the Lord covers my life with purity and peace. I love the snow. Maybe because the air is so crisp and still... so peaceful. It makes one calm and the light it brings is energizing on short winter days. I wonder what the crime rate is in towns where it snows often. I just can't imagine it being high. Who could commit a crime while it is so soft, white and peaceful -- and cold? I do know it is very low up here! Last night we were sitting near the window watching the wildlife out in abundance searching for food. They come out in full force right before a big snow so we knew one was coming. I had a urge to bake bread and Mountain Man had the urge to go hunting. ;o)
Mountain Man just appeared from up stairs with our littlest treasure snuggled securely in his masculine arms with eyes misted over from sleep. Her wee baby voice brings me joy and as I say "Good Morning sweetie" her little sleepy grin fills my heart near to bursting. I can't resist covering her with kisses. The falling snow, the warm fire, fresh baked bread of yesterday and a treasure in my arms tells me today is a day of blessings. I sat near the fire's warmth with Willow on my lap reading. Her book choice- Little Bunny Goes Potty. My book choice: "Home Town Tales" by Philip Gulley. If you have never read one his books you have missed a treat for sure! Philip Gulley is a small town Quaker minister with an absolutely delightful sense of humor. And honest to goodness his storytelling lifts my spirits. When I am finished with this one I just may have a give away of one of his books to pass this joy.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Philip. 4:7
It has been a week of surprises for us. Mountain Man was laid off and our little cabin in the woods is on the market. Many ask us why we are not worried or upset. We know this is just a season of change, one that the Lord has bestowed on us. Our family is safe and healthy. What more could we ask for. We will move and build a new little cabin in the woods as we have done before. Change can bring a feeling of insecurity and unrest but I know my friend and Savior is here. He has never left me or deserted me and never will. I can't say I will not have moments of feeling down but I know the peace He brings. I just feel blessed. I have His peace and am secure in His care.
Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. John 14:27
The girls have had such fun frolicking in the snow! Oh what joy to see these little ones happy and secure, enjoying the simple things in our lovely life.
No sleds needed...
Tushy's work just as well. ;o)
Piper, helping little sister
Piper helping little sister slide down the hill
Little sister on top of Piper
Trudging through the snow...
the last leaf of fall
I like this snow stuff
A warm feather bed to snuggle under at night in our little cabin in the woods...
Have blessed week and enjoy the precious gifts you have now!
"See, I have given you every herb that yields seed which is on the face of all the earth, and every tree whose fruit yields seed; to you it shall be for food." (Gen. 1:29)
Each year in August we go to the blueberry farm around the corner to pick organic blueberries right off the bush. It is a fun time for the girls and I so enjoy watching them running through the fields filling their baskets full of delicious blueberries. Fortunately for us, the owners happen to be Jack's girlfriend's parents. How convenient. ;) This beautiful Christian family takes great pain in keeping their bushes in optimum health in hopes of producing a bountiful crop of luscious fruit for those in our area. It is also a ministry for this couple as I have seen them giving their harvest away to those in need. I know they have blessed us over the years as we bring their berries home to make blueberry jam , preserves, muffins, pancakes, pie.... we also freeze them to enjoy through the winter. This was Willow's first adventure in pickin'.... not being sure what the little purplish -blue balls were, she decided they were for smashing in her hands and between her fingers as well as throwing them at her sisters. Trying to get her to pick only the ripe ones took some encouragement but she finally followed our lead.
Willow picking her first blueberries
Willow tasting her first blueberry... I don't think she likes them...
Maybe they'll be good to smash between my fingers...
yep. that's good.
Piper is always anxious for Sage's approval...
and she's satisfied...
baskets of blueberries for three empresses...
picking the perfect blueberry
Willow gives up...
Willow's little pail
Willow's little hand...
Sage ~ the zealous picker...
a beautiful summer day
taking a break...
and a respite under the blueberry shade
I don't even like those things... I'll just roll around in the grass for a while
It was a splendid day... I hope you enjoyed sharing it with us. :)
I found treasures over the weekend. Our church had a yard sale to benefit the youth so Mountain Man and I decided to mosey on over to support them! Now, I had donated at least half of those items so gave a soft warning to the girls "Don't buy back anything I donated!" Of course I kind of forgot to mention to them about a f-e-w things I donated ( it was only a few ..... honest). We were strolling around ~ in the rain ~ looking over the
junk treasures when I hear Piper: "Mama, Isdat my fire truck?" Mama: "Uh, hmmm, Oh look Mountain Man!" as mom hurries to another area. A few minutes later disgruntled Piper again approaches : "Mama, You gay my truck uhway!" Mama is now praying ....'cause she in twouble. Low and behold a lovely little boy walks up to the table holding the truck in question. His little eyes light up. His hand reaches out as he claims his treasure. (Piper didn't want that ole' truck anyways!) I continue browsing and find a little red barrel which some creative soul has made into a tetter totter! And it looks like a Little Cabin In the Woods item! This is the sort of man you will want if ever find yourself stranded on an island. He can take an bucket and turn it into a boat. Or carve a few trees into a house like Mountain Man. :0) I also bring home a Crystal Tea Pot. I have been looking for one of these for my flowering teas. I claim my treasures when I hear "Mama!" It's Sage. oppsy..... whew, thank goodness Jack wasn't there. ;)
The $5.00 Red Tetter totter
.... the girls have had such fun on this treasure! Notice Willow going in for the "wap"
Aren't they having fun! Notice Willow, successful in the "wap" Notice bookshelf I also brought home. ;)
"Mama, dis tetter totter make me forgive you for gettin' rid uh my truck."
Yeah.... she's singin' ...
and dancin' on the tetter totter...
she even had Willow dancin' and singin'....
ain't she sweet
Mountain Man and his girls. He teaches them many things....
like belching..... yes. she is imitating a horrible body function mainly used by the male species
she has pretty much perfected it..... thanks Mountain Man..... appreciate it.
Crystal Tea Pot with strainer....
So of course we enjoyed some on our tiny tea set from China.... all except Willow who was outside belching with dad.
Hope you found some treasure over the weekend and enjoyed your family!
How blessed I am.... the Lord has smiled on me and my life is glorious. Six beautiful children and I hope that I have triple that in grandchildren. Yes, I want many and I want them to live right next to me on a hundred acre wood. :0) It's Mother's Day and I can dream...
I just thought I'd share a few of my favorite things....since it is my day. And of course my mother's and my mother in laws day also. And of course all mother's!
Some motherly advice:
Teach your children to choose the right path, and when they are older, they will remain upon it.” Prov. 22:6.
He makes the barren woman to be a homemaker and a joyful mother of children. Psalm 113:9.
Let your children catch you reading the Bible...
~~~promote the kind of living that reflects wholesome teaching. Teach the older men to exercise self-control, to be worthy of respect, and to live wisely. They must have sound faith and be filled with love and patience ~~~ Titus 2:2.
Your child wants you there... quantity time does matter...
Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him. Psalm 127:3
Let your children catch you praying...
Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good. These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God. Titus 2:3-5
Look your child in the eyes and lovingly smile...
In the same way, encourage the young men to live wisely. And you yourself must be an example to them by doing good works of every kind. Let everything you do reflect the integrity and seriousness of your teaching. Teach the truth so that your teaching can’t be criticized. Then those who oppose us will be ashamed and have nothing bad to say about us. Titus 2: 6-8
Laugh with you children...
The commandments I give you today must be in your hearts. Make sure your children learn them. Talk about them when you are at home. Talk about them when you walk along the road. Speak about them when you go to bed. And speak about them when you get up. Deut. 6: 6-7.
Hold your child's hand when you walk..
~~~don't make your children angry. Instead, train them and teach them the ways of the Lord as you raise them. Eph.6:4
Let your children see you honor, respect & cherish your husband...
Train a child in the way he should go. When he is old, he will not turn away from it. Proverbs 22:6
Train and teach your child...
Things I cherish & enjoy - in no particular order...
my children ~~ books, books, books ~~ music ~~ rustic things ~~ log cabins ~~ my husband ~~ wood ~~ the Lord ~~ the lost arts of knitting, sewing, canning, needle work, quilting, church, homeschooling, spending time with my family, staying at home ~~ photography ~~ colors of deep red, green and earth tones ~~ crumbs on a child's mouth ~~ the morning mist ~~ Mountain Man ~~ a child's dirty feet from hours of play ~~watching my children learn ~~ watching the girls play in the creek ~~ horses ~~ family ~~ Victoria Magazine ( I have been enjoying this magazine since 1997 )~~ homesteading ~~ a child's hands and fingers ~~ walks in the woods ~~ fluffy down comforters and snuggling in the bed ~~
A few of my favorite stores ( or places ):
Lele' Knits ~~~ Vision Forum ~~~ Lehman's ~~~ Queen Homeschooling Supplies ~~~ Victoria Magazine ~~~ Wheat Montana ~~~ Mary janes Farm ~~~ Sense & Sensibility Patterns ~~~ Noble Womanhood ~~~ Modest Feminine Clothing Sites ~~~ FolkWear ~~~ Marmee Dear & Co. ~~~ Tapestry of Grace ~~~ Cherokee Cove ~~~ The Cove ~~~ The Cabin Store ~~~ Cabelas ~~~ Biltmore Estate ~~~ The Trices (friends) ~~~ TimberDoodle ~~~ Magic Cabin ~~~ Love To Learn ~~~ Books On The Path ~~~ Seasonal Delights
there are many more...
To my mother... Have a blessed Mother's Day, may the Lord shine upon you!
To my Mother-In-Law.... Your an amazing woman and truly deserve a crown in heaven.
To my precious, precious children... I love, love and adore you. I am humbled He chose me to be your mother. Thanks for loving me through the good times and the bad...
To Mountain Man: Thanks for letting me have a Quiver full! I love you...
May the Lord bless all the mothers around the world who love their children. And may He bless all the children around the world who have no mother to love them.
It's morning up here in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The mist has curled it's way around our wood providing us a mysterious lull. With the exception of an occasional song bird beckoning spring, all is at rest. Hark! I hear the pitter patter of little feet.... lol Actually, Willow is already awake. I sheepishly admit I woke her just so I could behold that first heart melting grin.... that first morning stretch-- the one where a baby arches her back, clinches her fists with legs pulled up producing little grunts-- you know the one. ;) Sage is sitting beside me. She has already dug into her 2nd grade language arts book and finished off three pages as well as her copy work for the morning. Piper is still snuggled in her bed, and Willow is quietly playing in the
junkroom.uhhh office.. playroom. I have actually been working in there all week putting up new shelves and trying to organize. (chuckle) I am a notorious pack rat so this is an on going challenge. Sage just came in and told me Willow has taken her clothes off. No wonder she was so quiet. :0). Not to say I blame her, everything I have is far too big. I had to go shopping this week to find more 9- 12 month old clothes. She also had a TB test this week (which is neg.) and her ear appears to be cleared up. I was then given a long list of immunizations she "needs". I won't get into a discussion on immunizations here, but let's just say she had a TB test. She has not gained an ounce even though I have been porking her up. I guess she is just tiny. My little sprite.
With a new little one and dance and violin finishing up for the season we have been on the go alot. I don't like this as I feel my home duties become neglected when I am always out and about. This will end in a couple weeks however, when everyone takes a summer respite. Our little world is a wee bit different as we continue our lessons throughout the year. Sage has shown a sizable interest in art, so for her birthday she was given a pocketed canvas bag full of splendid art supplies. From sketch books and pencils, watercolors, pads, brushes, erasers and more. We then watched the DVD Ms. Potter together. This is the charming story of Beatrix Potter and Sage was quite inspired! Her young mind has also decided she does not play the violin well ( aka she doesn't want to play the violin anymore) and wishes to play the piano instead. hmmm we shall see.
Piper is at the age where she is too young to be able to join Sage in any of her outside classes and too old to play with the toddlers... yep, the middle child. I remember this with the boys. The oldest child gets all the respect and responsibility and the younger one gets to be babied while the middle child is ... well, in the middle. Jack is my middle son. Or the brat we call him. Piper is my middle daughter. Bless her heart! Maybe we should have one more..... just kidding Mountain Man! Having three small one again has brought attention to several things I have forgotten. When I use to go out with just the two girls people just smiled and complimented them but did not go out of their way to help. With three, doors are magically opened for me, I am told to go ahead in line and receive comments like "You sure have your hands full", "Oh, dear. let me help you!", "You sure are a brave woman", and "Oh, my" You should see when I have my sons with me and how confused people are. So much so they can't help but inquire. I do not think 6 is a lot of children and feel immensely blessed... We do receive many compliments to this respect also but I get the feeling many times that people think "Why in the world would she want to do that." (chuckle) I am so behind on studio work but my children must come first so it will have to wait a bit longer...
Well, Sage has taken over my position and is reading to Piper- who is now awake- and Willow. Here are a few pictures from our blessed week.....
on the hunt... shhhhh
quiet...Don't let them see us...
oh no! I think they spotted us...
run!! run from the...
"Do they see me?" ahhh the imagination of a child...
At the old Mill Pond...
feeding the ducks
look! a feather!
"I wonder if it's from a he duck or a she duck."
Precious Piper picked a peck of pretty posies...well, corn.
My three daughters... Willow still will not touch the grass... notice the Sage has the monkey on Willow's back.
I'll just sit here...
and eat the pretzels, thank you very much...
oooo I love this child!
she is so precious ...
and practically perfect in everyway... (aka Mary Poppins)
Photo shoot opp!
with a baby in my arms... hurry for it's gone!
Car advertisment... at the Mill Pond.... lol
yeah, I wanted Willow in it too but she won't touch grass and she wouldn't leave my arms... maybe next time.
Have a blessed weekend filled with joy and laughter! Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven (
It has been a glorious week with Willow. She is truly a wonder and I am continuously grateful for the Lord entrusting her to us. After a sabbatical we started school back this week. Sage is finishing up her 1st/2nd grade work and will be starting her next levels in a month or two. I have started Piper with her kindergarten work and she is eager to learn. Willow is busy, busy, busy in her own activities, tearing books from their shelves, smashing cereal on the floor, climbing in baskets and sprinkling milk from her bottle on the cat. She thinks America is a buffet of food and material objects. Jack is finishing up his junior year in criminal law while William and David are working with the latter traveling continuously for his job. My father is having a second knee replacement surgery Monday and I can't help feeling guilty at not being able to go down to help him and my mother this time. I am wondering what arrangements need to be made at this upcoming season in my life with aging parents and young children. Mountain Man has a quite a few siblings to help with his parents. I feel it is our responsibility to care for our parents as they age and have been thinking lately on how I can accomplish this in the years ahead.... hmmm A hundred acre wood and two little cabins in the wood! sigh. Anyone else experiencing this? How do you do it?! Well, here are are couple of highlights from this week...
~ I was in the kitchen preparing the breakfast meal while Sage sat on a chair deep in thought. "Mom" she says. " Yes, sweetie" replies mom. Sage: "I feel like layin' down some blues" hmmmm, maybe she has been in the studio too much with me....
~~ Mom: " I wonder why the mama cat in not wanting to nurse her kittens lately" Sage, in a matter of fact voice: " Oh. she's neutering them."
~~~ Early one morning mom gives her precious new bundle a bath, cleans and mops the wooden floors to a glossy shine then feeling quite satisfied sits down for a short reprieve. The sound of flatulence is heard and she turns to see her wee Willow - who is experiencing an excessive fluidy fecal evacuation (aka diarrhea), which the insufficient diaper is not containing, and is now trailing on the glowing wooden floors.
When the girls rush to hand mom the paper towels she has asked them to fetch they fumble in her hands and come unrolled in the oozing business. Mom bends over to wipe up the business when Willow, who has been trained to promptly lie down to be changed, assumes the changing position right in the middle of the mess. Mom re- cleans Willow and the floor then sits down for a short repreive.... again. de jevue... Willow begins acidophilus tablets.
~~~~ A new routine is established. Mom: pick up and clean, feed, change Willow, clean, pick up. Willow: take everything out and pull everything from the shelves, find more to take out and lay on floor around various areas of the house, take everything out of baskets and climb in, poop, get changed, try new American foods, spit new American foods out, drink milk, sprinkle milk from bottle on floors and rug and cat, hide mom's cell phone, hide brother's cell phone, pull cat's tail, eat strange objects on floor, pour food on floor then step on it.... so much to do , so little time.
~~~~~ Willow enjoys carrying a purse around. She will entertain herself for the longest time filling her purse with treasures she has found ( like mom's or Jack's cell phone)
Yep, It has been a lovely week...
Willow will not stand on grass but she did make a little pile of wood bark and grass which her sister brought her.
She has the eyes of a puppy, the drool of a Saint Bernard...
In her mama's arms... photo by Sage :)
and frolic on a warm spring day...
a goofy smile... lol
Mother in training...
my three daughters
Sage decided Willow needed a leash....
Willow: I got a monkey on my back...
just trying to fill my mother's shoes...
and they are big shoes to fill.... with a monkey on your back
Monkey: yeah, you think you got problems
Just one of the toys
hmmm I kind of like it in here
Have a blessed day filled with the Lord's goodness!
Mountain Man gifted me this magnificent, over size piece of art one Christmas many, many years ago. I call him Michael; one of the Arch angels in the Bible. He hangs over my stair case. Each time I see him I think of God's magnitude. It just wouldn't be the same at home without seeing Michael first thing as we enter. This portrait is so comforting to gaze on with it's warm hues... you can almost touch his wings. How wonderful the Lord is and all his creations. This painting causes me to consider the vastness of our Creator. The artist has let us glimpse, perhaps, the unseen.
Consider the breadth of the unseen... Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unaware. Hebrews 13:2
Head on over to Kelli's for more Show & Tell Friday!
Question: What is this and why in the world do YOU have it?
Answer: It is a mask, complete with moving mandible, large wooden tusks and hair. yup. Why do I have it, considering it has nothing to do with anything in my life or my uhhh hmmm.. decorating tastes? (well, I do like red) It was my Mother's Day gift last year from Jax. Why do I share this treasured gift with you? Because, if you have sons this is the type of gifts they will probably give you when they grown up. If you try to "hide" the gift or pack it away this is what happens... Jax: "Mom? Where your Mother's Day gift?" Mother: "Which one honey, sugar doodle?" (schmoozing is essential since I know exactly which one he is talking about) Jax: "The amazing mask??!" Mother: "Oh! The lovely mask, yes,yes... ummm..." Jax: "Mama, where is it? I put a lot of thought into that amazing gift and my feelings will be shattered if you do not put it in a place of honor" Mother: "Is... the laundry room ... a place of honor for the mask?" Jax:"Mama! my little heart is broke, your beloved (syrupy) 2nd son... his gift was not appreciated. Here, I will show you were the mask will look beautiful" 2nd son proceeds to get mask from laundry room and put it up in the kitchen in a place of "honor". Mother: "So, like it's a kitchen God?" Jax: "Yes, to help you with your burnt offerings" --- sound of Jax running... sound of mom taking mask and throwing it at Jax (just kidding) sound of mom taking honorable mask back to laundry room. Burnt offerings... humph. Now, we have this conversation at least once a month and the mask usually ends up in a different place, him moving it then me moving it back. Right now it is over my pantry and I try to ignore it when I am whipping up "burnt offerings".
Our vocabulary word for the day, "Show and Tell Friday", was "hectic", meaning: characterized by intense agitation, excitement, confused and rapid movement. The reason I tell you this is the reason why my Show and Tell Friday is late. Life happened or should I say Hectic happened. My camera was not working well so with great excitement and rapid movement I packed it up to send back to Nikon (so I can have it before I travel to China!). I thought I could drop it off when I took Sage (who has had an Pneumonia and an uncommon rash unlike anything you have ever seen- another story) and Piper (who is now also quite sick) to the doctor. In a hectic manner I put my precious camera- oh so carefully- in a box and put the other items I would take with me on top of the box.... Purse, papers, cell phone, library books, grocery list, DVD's to return ---- I mean we were going to town and might as well bring EVERYthing with us and get EVERYthing done. I drove alllll the way to town, in the snow, with my spare tire still on and windshield still cracked and nail still sticking out of the flat tire (another story) in intense agitation. We didn't get out of the doctors office until late and I hectically drove to the Sock Stop (the mountain version of Pak and Ship - another story) trying to make it before he closed. As I pulled up I saw my shipping buddy outside. Closing up. I rolled down my window and in a hectic, pleading voice asked him to puhhhlease take my box. Since we come in often he said "Well, come on in" He had to turn everything back on and gave the girls a sucker (about the 6th one they had been given that day - argh.. I think they are all in cahoots with the dentist on this I honestly do). I felt sooo much better getting my package shipped and I felt that hectic pressure release form my inner being... whew. It was dark by the time we got home and that morning,being so hectic, I had forgotten my cell phone at home so was anxious to see if the agency called about our travel approval. When I got home I looked high and low and couldn't find my cell phone but was so tired I just went to bed. The next morning I woke and went to find my cell phone. I was confused as to where in the world I had put that phone and quickly became agitated. The vocabulary for that day was "Fetch" but I was still on "hectic" as I searched high and low for that cell phone as I needed to call my husband. I couldn't find it anywhere... argh.. I had another appointment, or rather my car did, this time for the broken windshield. I was in an agitated mood since I couldn't find my phone. I just knew the agency would call with my travel info! We piled in the car on our way back to town as I thought of all the places I could have left my phone. A bit down the road it hit me..... It was in the box. On it's way to NY.
I prayed to the Lord that UPS had not picked it up yet. I am sure the Lord was a bit agitated as I had already prayed that UPS would be swift in picking up and delivering my package so I could get my camera back. Of course this is why He is God. I then got tickled thinking of my cell phone ringing in the Sock Stop shop or in the UPS man's hands.... In great excitement I stepped into the shop to fetch my box hoping it was still there. AS I stepped into the shop I spied my box. whew... Mr Sock Stop man: "Your cell phones in that box ain't it." Me: sheepishly blushing... "uhhh yeah."
So welcome to my world... Sometimes hectic, always exciting, many times peaceful but always trying to learn how I can please the Lord more....
Oh, with great anxiousness I say "No, our TA did not come in" With great agitation I say "All the other agencies got their TA's"
Hope you have a non-hectic, un-agitated day! With the Lord's help I am. :o)
Horatio Spafford had a life full of blessings. A successful Chicago lawyer, he had a lovely wife and five adoring children. But in 1871 his world changed. His one and only son died and later that year the great fire ravaged Chicago and left him in financial ruins. In 1873 the family decided to take a reprieve in Europe. Delayed by business, Horatio boarded his wife and four daughters on a ship to Europe promising to soon follow. The ship never made it.... colliding with another ship it sank into the oceans depths taking Horatio's four daughters to a watery grave. His wife was been found floating on a piece of the wreckage, unconscious. Nine days later he received a telegram from her which read "Saved Alone... what shall I do...". Horatio immediately sailed to bring his wife home. As his ship passed over the place where his daughters had lost their lives, his heart filled with grief and anguish, he composed this song...
Oh, may I never know grief such as this.... but if ever I do may I have strength to say It is well with my soul.
When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, with my soul,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.
Here it is! This recipe comes from Not Quite June Clever. I used butter instead of lard, and whole wheat flour from Wheat Montana with baking soda and salt since it is an all-purpose flour. They were so light and flaky! hmmm... I think I will make more tomorrow. ;) You all let me know how they turn out!
Preheat oven to 475. Spray a pan with cooking spray. Mix flour and salt in a medium bowl with a whisk. Add lard and crumble with your fingers until it crumbles with no pieces bigger than a pea. Just rub the flour/lard between your fingers.
Make a well in the center and pour in the buttermilk and heavy cream all at once and mix with a fork until JUST MIXED. Do not over work. The dough will be very sticky, very wet…kinda like large curd cottage cheese.
Dust your hands with the all purpose flour and also your work surface. Turn out the dough onto the flour surface and work with it so it is just coated with a very light covering of flour. Pat it out…fold it over on itself from the right, turn a half a turn and pat out again…this gives you the layers. Pat out to a 8 inch by 6 inch rectangle and cut with a 2″ biscuit cutter - DO NOT TWIST the cutter. Cut straight down and lift up. Twisting will seal the edges and your layers will be gone! This should give you 10-12 biscuits…you can pat your scraps out once but no more. Re working will cause the dough to become tough.
Bake for 15 minutes more or less…watch them so they don't get too brown. Mine were so near perfect and then I over baked them maybe by a minute. So as soon as they are perfectly golden, take them out! Brush with butter and eat!!!
Have a blessed day!
Mothers Pride has graced me with this sweet award. I am ever so humbled and give her a gracious thanks.
I wish to pass it to these friendly homesteaders who strive to live a simple life cutting out their way on the land.
Heather @ Muddy Boot Acres - a busy homeschooling mother living a simple life on a homestead. Take a peek into the simple and arduous life of a homesteader.
Hidden Haven Farms She raises goats (like we use to) and and children ( like we still do ) and always has clever and interesting entries. She also makes creamy goats milk soap (like we use to) Guess her blog makes me reminisce...
We had such a lovely weekend. It warmed up after our little snow storm and we went outside to enjoy the spring like weather. The weather is enjoyable up here and you are never snowed in long. We have several large boulders in our wood the girls take pleasure in playing on. They have had picnics & tea parties, built fairy houses and been Pocahontas on these massive rocks. They have pretended to be on a boat, or an island far away from their home. In the snow they have climbed on the rocks to escape an avalanche and in the summer stretched out and sunned upon it's top. This weekend it became the Dancing Rock. Sage sang and danced to the music of the butterfly -- ad lib. She did this for almost an hour engrossed in a great drama and I was mesmerized in watching her. Not being a prissy one, Piper played with a snow shovel digging in the dirt and climbed on a log in her own style enjoying the mud left behind by the melting snow. Children are creative little sprites when left to their own imagination. They really don't need to be entertained constantly or taken somewhere. When left to their own devices they learn to create using the gifts of nature that God has given us. I know the Lord smiles on these little ones. They say a picture is worth a thousand words.... It truly was a wonderful splendid weekend.
Song of the Dancing Rock...
Be thou my vision.....
Oh Lord of my heart...
Not be all else to me...
Save that thou art...
Thou my best thought...
or by night....
Waking or sleeping
My presence my light...
Be thou my vision, and thou my true word...
I ever with thee and thou with me Lord...
Thou my great Father, I thy true one...
Thou in me dwelling...
And I with thee one.
She's dancing' while I'm doin' all the work
You see all my work?
humph... I'm workin'' hard
I need a rest...
And some fun...
The sun shinning and warm temperatures drew us to the General Store for a soda and some treats. Nothing is so good as soda in a glass bottle! You feel like you've stepped back in time when you enter -- the smell of old wood, music on the banjo, fiddle & mandolin, the smell of the old piper stove heating up the store and little ones eyes sparkling at all the candies and toys. It is a good place to go if you want to experience old time living up in the Appalachian mountains.
Relaxing on the porch...
An old rocker blackened on the back from years of use...
A child's delight..
Stepping back in time...
to good ol' Appalachian music...
don't forget to leave a tip in the can
oh, look at the toys mama....
an old file...
up the stairs with their baskets in hand
soda in a glass bottle... a must
an old log church
Little Cabin In the Woods
Cream soda in a bottle....mmmmm
Later, after we were rested I did some work in the studio. I let the girls record some music and stories of their own. With great enthusiasm they planned their project..... stories with musical interludes in between.
serious recording session... (with very chapped lips)
Once upon a time....
Piper the pipest...
Have a delightful day and enjoy life!
As we drove home last night the snow fall was already canvasing the mountains. We pulled into our wooded drive and there sat our little log house nestled in a picturesque winter wonderland. A simple single candle burned in each window and lights were sparkling around the door.... it was quite inviting and beckoned us to come in and sit by the fire. Piper hopped out of the car and immediately plopped down on her back waving her arms and legs in jumping jack fashion to make a snow angel. It was truly a kodak moment... unfortunately I didn't have my camera. We awoke this morning to a canopy of white. Snow fall is peaceful and full of wonder.... Purity comes to mind. I get giddy every time it snows. After a delicious breakfast of banana nut buckwheat pancakes we started some bread and while we were waiting for it to rise the girls rushed upstairs and began the process of layering their clothes so they could venture out in the fluff. We decided to meander up the road and enjoy the unique beauty of God's gift to us. Occasionally the girls would plop down and begin the jumping jack popping up to inspect the angel left behind. I wonder who first discovered this... Our cat always walks with us whenever we go out, running and frisking about. I find this unusual. Does anyone have a cat like this? Upon returning home we opened the door and the aroma of rising bread embraced us letting us know it was just about ready to bake. We punched it down and set it to rise a bit more then worked on math and read a story before placing it in the oven to bake. It doesn't get much better than this.... beautiful children, snow, fireplace buring, baking bread, Christmas...
Face down snow angel??
Yep, It works either way...
Hiking in the snow with kitty...
One of the lovely things about living up here is the abundance of Christmas Trees. No matter where you go or look you will see Christmas trees dotting the landscape, their piney scent permeating the mountains. Maybe that is why the air is so clean and fresh in the mountains. Not much comes close to a fresh cut Christmas tree... the essence of pine needles, sap and wood as it is chopped down. It's a balm to my being. Every year we visit Solomon and Adelaide Horney's Christmas Tree Farm where the girls attentively, painstakingly search for the finest tree. One that will surely do our little log house proud! This year they selected a smaller tree but one of great perfection to their little eyes. I am reminded of when I was a little girl... Feeling sorry for the undersized trees with their scant often barren branches, begging my parents to have compassion by choosing one that would surely never be blessed with adorning a home if we weren't merciful. As an adult I am reminding of how Christ was laid in a manger made from the wood of a tree... how our Savior was later nailed to a tree for no sin of His own. As we come into this Christmas season may the Lord fill you with His gracious gifts... Have a beautiful day. Take mind to notice the simple things in life we so often take for granted.
Searching for the perfect tree...you go that way...
On with the search...
I think we found it...
Oh yeah... this is it. I feel it!
A father and his daughters....nothing is so beautiful.
I would like to introduce you to Ling and Lee. They were my Chinese dolls when I was a little girl. My mother pulled them out last year but couldn't find Master Lee's pants and top. Goodness, one of his legs was also missing. Poor little thing. Lings silk gown has seen better days and is quite in need of repair. Ling and Lee are quite worn and thread bare from providing years of playful fantasy and joy. My mother had carefully tucked them away with many other gems, in a large hand carved cedar trunk from overseas never imagining I would travel back to China to bring home my daughters. How I thank her for taking such great care in keeping these treasures just so. She even kept their little red silk pillow. It is obvious from their appearance how I loved these dolls. This week their tattered pillow will be attentively repaired and Lee will receive a new leg and later some clothes. It is the least I can do for the years of delight they gave me.
The end of fall appears to be drawing near soon and we are expecting snow flurries this week! The sun is out enhancing the last of the colorful leaves on the trees. The wind is blowing and the temperature is dropping. The girls made merry this invigorating fall day. Full of spirited frisk, they rolled and frolicked in the hued leaves. How entertaining they are to watch, how picturesque the moment. What joy they bring to those around them. The time has fallen back and the days come to a close all to early now. We are trying- and doing poorly- to keep a schedule. We want to luxuriate in the outside before the snows come. As the season begins to change I can't help but consider the shift of seasons in my life emerging. I wait in expectation to see what it brings. The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord; and he delighteth in his way (Psalm 37:23). As fall leaves and the season changes it is my desire to be a delight to the Lord. Oh, to have the wisdom and knowledge of all I know now but to be young! But, we must look forward and lean on Him. ....for the LORD searches all hearts, and understands every plan and thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will cast you off for ever. (1 Chronicles 28:9) I pray as we come into this season of Thanksgiving we examine our life and purpose on earth. May we acknowledge the One who sends us the quenching rain, the glowing sunshine, the bountiful harvest and the the pearly snow. I hope these pictures make you smile and I pray your season of thanksgiving is as rich as ours.
The giver and the receiver...
The joy of giving...
The joy of receiving??...
A merry little one...
yes, we are always barefoot...
and always having fun..
The beauty of Fall...
Little log church
Plain woman ...( thank you Patty for letting me know where to get these little dolls! the girls play with them often.)
Piper and her hats...
Sage and her bonnet...
Over the rail...
Oh, the drama...
I can not tell you how much fun the girls had with this stick... or sword as they called it...
They stuck it in cracks...
And held it up high...
And poked it in my antique ice cream churn... to churn butter of course...
Self portrait..... ;)
Have a blessed day!!
Things about fall I love most:
~ the invigorating feel of the changing season
~ soup simmering in the pot
~ candle light
~ playing, singing and creating music with my family
~ little ones giggling... fluttering in the autumn breeze, playing with the fallen leaves
~ comfy sweaters
~ the aroma of homemade bread filling the house
~ quiet walks
~ early mornings on the porch with a cup of hot cocoa and a throw
~ sitting outside around a fire in the evenings talking
~ the feeling of change
~ cuddling up with a good book & reading to my children
~ the vibrant palette of nature, pumpkins
~ leaves falling, wind
~ a cozy fireplace
~ log cabins
~ leaf rubbing's
~ the smell of wood buring
~ Appalachian music and warm cider
~ the crisp air that fills you lungs
~ sewing warmer frocks for the girls and myself
~ watching my husband carry both girls in his strong arms
~ tables adored with gourds, candles and Indian corn
~ children's laughter
Nothing is as beautiful as a child praying. The simplicity and humility it shows must be so endearing to God. Children learn by watching their parents. It is important that we pray in front of our children as well as with our children. I am constantly on guard as to what I say and how I act. I fall short so often! I am constantly searching for Godly role models for my children to emulate. Most of all I pray.
Fall is bursting forth in an array of vibrant reds, oranges and yellows this year! It is any wonder with this lack of rain that we have color at all. The refreshing sensation of autumn is utterly inviting and I enjoy this refreshing season most of all. The girls brought in the last of the tomatoes this week still green on the vine.... I think we will enjoy a day of collecting colorful leaves, nuts and acorns. Life is good..
Pumpkins and mums and two little girls enjoying the fall...
Looking for the last of the harvest...
Filling her basket
Homemade Potato soup and fresh corn bread by candle light...a delicious harvest meal
A sisters hug... pure sweetness
Needing a loving home.... anyone??
It seems Autumn is trying her best to caress her way into the mountains. Blustery wind who was shaking the already turning leaves of the trees was accompained by Misty rain as his escort. Seeing the activity the girls and I went outside to sit on the porch and enjoy the cool breeze. With umbrellas in hand they dashed out into the rain laughing and leaping in an umbrella dance. Little ones find such delight in simple things. I find delight in watching them.
Piper brings me the gift of a red leaf.
The Umbrella Dance begins
We woke up later than usual this morning. It felt good to sleep in. We took our coffee, and cappuccinos (as the girls call their warm milk with flavored creamer) outside on the front porch to read and enjoy the crisp coolness of the morning. I feel fall in the air... just around the corner.
We always have a Bible story first thing in the morning and then they choose a selection of something else to read. We read out of an old book called "Best In Children's Books" published in 1938. We have several of these and they are delightful. Sage wanted to hear the story of William Tell again. Then they chose "The Man who Cooked Himself Breakfast". Sage always wants to know the lesson in a story... "What does this story teach you?" she will ask. She is inquisitive in this way.
After this quiet time of reading and chattering (which is something I thoroughly enjoy and little girls do so well!) we went inside and practiced the violin then went on to the Saxon math lesson and copywork for the day. Piper did some of her schoolwork - which she loves. I realize how fortunate I am to have little ones who enjoy their lessons!
I then sent an email to my wonderful husband thanking him for loving and supporting us - something I do not thank him enough for. I am trying to do better at this! Later we will be enjoying a trip into town.... maybe go to the mall before dance lessons. Our mall is quite small -- around 15 stores or so --- but they recently added a Panera Bread and I so enjoy their bagels! It has been a wonderful morning.
Hope you have a lovely day! Take time to enjoy life. Stop and smell the flowers...
The simplicity of wooden toys
Sage 's orphanage mate Jenna stopped by to enjoy lessons with us. These two girls love math.
Playing a game of math they made up... their idea. What lucky parents!
We had a busy weekend scouring flea markets, cleaning, laundry , snoozing and baking Zucchini bread for some new neighbors several acres away. The delicious aroma filled the house as we worked and we enjoyed a slice warm and fresh from the oven. It was a beautiful weekend and we are already enjoying this week with a bit of rain which we needed badly.
Thrifting treasures... A simple brown bowl filled with colorful threads and an old schoolhouse picture. I do love old things.
Looking for treasure
Always time for practicing
from Jan. 7, 2007 ~ Christmas and the Holidays are busy with all the hustling and bustling, visiting, parities, shopping, events, music, food and festivities. Our lives can become quite chaotic during this time of year so much so that I actually begin to crave the sense of security our regular routine brings. I miss the monotony of a regular day and the normalcy it brings. We are all looking forward to this week when we get back on track. The Lord needs to be able to trust us in the small things of everyday life. Mothering, laundry, teaching, praying, even doing the dishes. This is what keeps the world going. So welcome to the New Year of 2007. I am glad you are here and look forward to getting back to our everyday normal day in and day out life.
Piper enjoying a good book.
from June 3, 2006 ~~It is extremely difficult to get pictures of Piper... she is constantly moving and does not like to have her picture taken . After the recital these two little country girls kicked off their shoes and went rollin' in the grass.... in their white dresses. Three guesses what I'll be doing.
Winter is going out with a BANG this year.
Oh how I long for spring....
I do so enjoy the beautiful snow the Lord gives to us up here in the
Appalachian Mountains but am ready for that new season which brings the warming sunshine. I am ready for more time spent outdoors, to plant a garden and enjoy playing in the dirt with my girls.