Saturday, November 05, 2011

One Little Corner - Computer Desk

Here is a picture of my desk before. It's pretty bad. Actually I share this desk with my husband. I have baby stuff, craft supplies, school stuff, mail.. you name it, it's on this desk.
Here is the desk after about 20m of work. If you see any personal info please ignore it, I tried to make sure it was a little anonymous. :) This is a very old desk. It was my grandaddy's. One day I will find some extra time to restore it, but for now it's fine.
What I wish I could show you is the calendar above the desk. It's literally saved our family so much time. Hmm.. maybe that will be another post. I can't show you my calendar because it's got to much personal info on it, but sometime this week I will link to a similar calendar and talk about how fantabulous it is!!

What little corner are you working on?
Be Blessed!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

One Little Corner - Laundry

It does not take long for clean laundry to pile up on me. We have a great system. One of my girls starts the wash, another switches it over and pulls it out of the dryer. I fold/sort everything and then two girls put it all away. I have the job of folding and sorting so I can keep up with pulling stuff out that does not fit or is the wrong season or just has been worn out. This is what it looked like over the weekend and through Monday and Tuesday.
About 20m later and this is the end result. Much, much better.

Cleaning my home one corner at a time. :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Making My Way Back

I am slowly working my way back. It's been so hard. I'm resting and trying to reorganize my life. My house has fallen apart around me, but thankfully it's not horrible. Training my kids in the past to do chores has really helped. It's clean, but messy.
My focus for the rest of this week is getting back into a regular school schedule and working to get the school room/dining room straightened up and reorganized.
My heart is still very heavy on most days. I feel such a deep emptiness. I'm hoping that if I can get back into some sort of routine it will help some. I know the feeling will not go away and I will always be missing someone. I also know I am so thankful for the blessings God has given me. I really have no idea what I would have done if I did not have my kids to remind me of how much He has done for me. Miss Lily has been a pure joy through all of this. She makes me laugh every single day.
My Bible has been opened a few times lately. That's huge for me right now. We are back to doing family devotions in Romans at night and reading through Psalms/Proverbs in the morning.
Right now I'm just working to get through the days. It's rough but it's getting better.
I'll try to post tomorrow with some pics of what I can get done.
Ya'll be blessed!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

When it gets harder...

I was so looking forward this week to announcing the good news that we were expecting number 7. I found out two weeks ago and had my OB appt set for Sept. 12. I was a little nervous but all in all I had a good feeling about this baby.
On Sept. 11 at 4:00a.m. I woke up in horrible pain. As we got ready to go to the ER I begged God to let me keep my baby. All the way to the hospital I just prayed and prayed that my baby would be ok.
Around 9 a.m. we knew that would not be. I had an ectopic pregnancy. I was in surgery in just a few hours and came out two and a half hours later with one less fallopian tube and no baby. I ended up with severe nausea and trouble breathing so I spent the night at the hospital.
This past week has been one of recovery and healing. At one point the other day I thought, "Just when I thought life could not get any harder, it did."
I don't know why God has set this as my path right now. I've had some talks with Him about the whole thing. I am holding on to my faith as hard as I can. My Bible remains closed for right now, but God and I are still talking. I'm recalling verses that I've memorized and I'm thankful for those.
I have encouraging words from friends and those mean a lot to me. I like to process things in silence so I have not talked about it a whole lot yet. I probably won't for a little while. It's just how I deal with stuff. I'll be ok. I'll be back in my Bible soon. I know this is all just part of the battle we fight and I won't let the devil have any victory.
Your prayers are appreciated.

Friday, September 09, 2011

A Mother's Prayer

The history of John Newton is often mentioned as a proof of the deep and lasting impression which a mother may produce upon the mind of her child. He had a pious mother. She often retired to her closet, and placing her hand upon his youthful head, implored God's blessing upon her boy. These prayers and instructions sunk deep into his heart. He could not but revere that mother. He could not but feel that there was a holiness in such a character, demanding reverence and love. He could not tear from his heart, in after life, the impressions then produced. Though he became a wicked wanderer, though he forsook friends and home, and every virtue; the remembrance of a mother's prayers, like a guardian angel, followed him wherever he went. He mingled in the most evil and disgraceful scenes of a sailor's life, and while surrounded with guilty associates, in midnight revelry, he would fancy he felt the soft hand of his mother upon his head, pleading with God to forgive and bless her boy. He went to the coast of Africa, and became even more degraded than the savages upon her dreary shores. But the soft hand of his mother was still upon his head, and the fervent prayers of his mother still thrilled in his heart. And this influence, after the lapse of many guilty years, brought back the prodigal, a penitent and a child of God; elevated him to be one of the brightest ornaments of the Christian church, and to guide many sons and daughters to glory. What a forcible comment is this upon the power of maternal influence! And what encouragement does this present to every mother to be faithful in her efforts to train up her child for God! Had Mrs. Newton neglected her duty, had she even been as remiss as many Christian mothers, her son, to all human view, might have continued in sin, and been an outcast from heaven. It was through the influence of the mother that the son was saved. Newton became afterward a most successful preacher of the Gospel, and every soul which he was instrumental in saving, as he sings the song of redeeming mercy, will, through eternity, bless God that Newton had such a mother.


by John Abbott, 1833, Worcester, Mass.
Published by the American Tract Society

As I look upon my children I often wonder who they will grow up to be. I pray fervently for their hearts and souls. I pray that not only will they know the saving power of Jesus Christ in their live, but that they will live their lives wholly devoted to Him. I don't want my kids to think of salvation as fire insurance. We spend time in the morning pouring over God's word together. We spend time during our group time studying Who Is God? Last night we had a whole discussion about how our inward appearance can greatly affect our outward appearance. It's things like this that I hope will turn my children's hearts towards Jesus. No matter what though, I will always pray for my children, just as Mother Newton prayed for her dear John.

God is a God of mercy and grace. As my children grow I have seen times of doubt in some of their lives. I have seen one of my precious children question this God of the universe. It always sends me to my knees. I know I have to let this child grow up and make their own decisions. I know one day this child will go their own way. All I can do is give this child the tools and foundation to build their life on the ROCK. If they choose to move to sandy ground I will pray, pray, pray. I will never cease praying for my kids and I have told each one of them that.

Not too long ago, we had an incident where one of my children was battling a sin in their life. This child had hardened their heart and would not show repentance of this sin for any amount of begging and pleading. I finally looked said child in the eye and told them a mother's prayers never cease. I have seen some change in this child. While not the repentance I was hoping for I have to believe that they are working towards that just by the change in their attitude.

Cleaning my home and homeschooling are all important to me. Still, they come in dead last to my childrens' souls and relationship with our God. I would live in a messy house with ignorant children if it meant every one of my children could enjoy a lasting full relationship with Jesus Christ. I'm so thankful that I don't have to and that God has shown me that my childrens' hearts are receptive to the Word of God. I am thankful that I have time in my day to clean and homeschool and share Jesus with my children.

I just pray that my relationship with God is one that overflows into my home and my childrens' lives. Amen.

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

My thoughts on blogging.

I can't believe it's been 2 weeks. The idea of having a blog to talk about my home and family life and hold me semi-accountable is not going very well. We've had some surprises around here lately that I am trying to process. It means more changes for our little household, but we have to believe that God is always in control!!
I have a lot going on. I have portfolio checks for two of my kids this month, laundry backed up to the ends of the earth, a bedroom that keeps accumulating stuff, an empty fridge and pantry that really needs a good shopping trip to be restocked, and a toddler who loves to climb and play in the garbage. I could not be happier with this life. Blogging is a me thing and I will continue doing it as I can. Some people have said that young mothers should not have blogs. I've heard it said that we should spend the time we spend blogging being moms. I agree with that to an extent. I love writing on my blog. I have actually made some pretty good friends via blogs over the past few years of doing this. I love, love, love reading blogs. I get so much inspiration from other women who are walking this same road I'm on. All the houses around mine are empty right now. People are at work and school. I see other bloggers as my neighbors. People I can sit down with occasionally and learn from or share with.
I do spend a lot of time with my kids. I think spending 30m reading some blogs or posting my own blog is a nice way to energize me for the rest of the day. Right now, Jonathan and Adrian are cleaning their room. (It was already clean so I don't really know what they are doing. They are getting along and working together so I'm not going to look to closely.) Lily is chasing Tamara and Kelsie is chasing Lily, a lot of giggling is what I hear. Karly is sprawled on the floor by me reading a book. She stops to tell me about it every now and then. I'm in the midst of them living this life.
I'm hoping to carve out a little more time this month to blog. I'm in the midst of lots of projects and changes that I really want to share. If you don't see me here, though, just know that I am living the best life ever!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Finding my way

WOW! It's been a super busy week. I never realized how much I depended on my husband being home and helping out with the kids. Yes, it's been a long two years of unemployment, but wow, he was uber helpful around here.
Homeschooling while a teething baby is around is not easy. Forgive me if I ever thought it was! My Jonathan was SO easy. He would spend hours in baby jail while I schooled the girls. Now I am schooling five kids and Lily wants to be in the middle of it all. To top it all off I was in charge of ALL the meals! I can't remember the last time I was in charge of all the meals!
Can I say, none of my household projects got done this week? Not one. I'm thankful I have my kids on a strict chore routine or my house would have fallen down around my ears!
His training is done now and he will probably be assigned a security guard post next week so we can figure out a schedule then. More than likely it will be a night post so we'll just work around that.
I did get all my schooling done this week, so I'm proud of that! :)
I'm thankful for the job, but I sure do miss having my honey around!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Make It Yourself Part 2

I got so much accomplished yesterday! I love days like that. Of course I probably should have saved some of this for other blog posts but I was very happy to have done what I did. Although I will admit doing it all took less than an hour. Everything was so easy. :)
I started with powdered laundry detergent.
The video I watched, that of course I can't find right now, she cut the bar of soap (I used Fels Naptha after finding it at Publix, but have since learned plain old Ivory soap works as well) into chunks and put them in the food processor.
She then added 1/2 cup of Borax and 1/2 cup of washing soda. I forgot the picture of putting a wet kitchen towel over the processor. It's supposed to keep everything contained. Even doing this I had particles of the stuff all over my counter. Next time I will do it at a table no where near my other kitchen stuff. I had to clean my toaster out because it had soap flakes all in it. LOL
It came out all ground up and mixed together. She said she uses about 1 Tblsp for her laundry. I figured I'd start there and see how it works. I was going to make the liquid but this looked so much easier. I have another bar of soap so next time I will make the liquid and see which one I like better. I'll let you know how it works. We have a little bit of detergent left so as soon as that runs out, probably today, we'll try this out.
My second project was some all purpose cleaner. Super duper easy. A spray bottle filled about half way full with plain ole white vinegar.
A few drops of GSE for a little more disinfection power and to give it a slight citrusy smell. I think I give the bottle three to four squeezes. It lasts forever!

I always add in some hot water and there I have all purpose cleaner or vinegar cleaner as the kids call it. It does smell very vinegary coming out of the bottle when you spray but the smell disappears in just a minute or two.
Then I made some strawberry yogurt. I usually make my own yogurt using the crockpot method, but it takes about 1/2 a galllon of milk and I only had 1 gallon. So I just grabbed two containers of plain full fat yogurt. All of our dairy products are full fat because it's actually a good fat and I have lots of growing little people around here. Surprisingly, Dannon is the only yogurt I can find that comes plain and full fat. I pulled out a bag of frozen strawberries (and only used about half the bag) and my Stevia baking blend. I discovered it when I was pregnant. I was on a very strict low carb diet while pregnant and craving something sweet. I researched and researched a safe alternative sweetener and this is what I came up with. I use it all the time and LOVE it. It does not effect my blood sugar. I bought mine at a health food store here in town.
I was going to use my food processor but it was getting cleaned up from the laundry soap so I pulled out my smoothie maker.
I dumped in one container of yogurt, maybe about 1/3 c of the sugar blend, and 2-3 hand-fulls of frozen strawberries. Blend, blend, blend and repeat with another container of yogurt, more sugar, and more strawberries.
It made about 3 jars of strawberry yogurt. One jar came out very smoothie like but the other two were still pretty thick and creamy. Isn't it pretty? :) I don't know if it was very economical, but I had fun doing it and it tastes so good!
Well that was my yesterday afternoon. Today I need to make some bread and tortillas.
I also have some pics and stuff from the 31 Days to a Cleaner Home Challenge. I have really enjoyed the tasks and it's helping me see some stuff I left undone before.
On a very bright note, my DH starts a job on Monday. Yep! We are very excited. He'll spend next week in a training class so I'll have some extra time to get some stuff done. I love having him home but we have not had a real routine in awhile. I can't set up a routine yet though around his schedule because the job he has we don't know what shift he'll get yet. When he does we'll work around that.
Since I'll have the computer I might even get to blog a bit more. ;)
I hope you all have a great weekend.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Make It Yourself

Before my whole Lily surprise I used to make a lot of stuff myself. Bread, yogurt, seasonings, cleaning products... the list goes on. It's been probably 2 years since I filled my cupboards and cleaning cabinets with my own stuff.
I bought my starter yogurt and some frozen fruit to add in and I have everything to make my laundry soap so that's what I'll be working on tomorrow or Saturday. I'll try to remember to take pictures. I also need to make some all purpose cleaner, but that's super simple.
Basically I use equal parts water and vinegar and add in grapefruit seed extract. Put it in the spray bottle and go to town. Simple and it really does work.
After 2.5 years of unemployment we are down to really stretching every penny. I've been watching some Youtube videos and trying to figure out other stuff I can make. I found hand soap, dish washing soap, shampoo.. it's all out there. I might try some of that stuff as well.
What are some things you make yourself?

Thursday, August 04, 2011

Leave it undone

O Lord, may I be directed what to do and what to
leave undone.
Elizabeth Fry

Something I TRULY need to pray every day. How quickly the days seem to be going. As my lazy summer winds down I am faced with a busy year ahead. I'm going to write this down and put it on my calendar.

Monday, August 01, 2011

My vision for my home.

I started the 31 days to clean challenge today.
I had to write out my mission statement for my home. It actually turned into more of a vision.
The whole thing boiled down to one sentence.

I want my home to be a safe refuge for all who enter from the world.

That sums it up.
I want:
Joy and
in my home.

I can't have any of the above with mess and clutter and disorder.
I'm looking forward to the challenge.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Everything I Once Hoped For

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.” Epicurus

Here is everything I once hoped to have. I do get caught up in wanting my little hobby farm, a 15 passenger van, more kids and the list goes on. I remind myself that God is sovereign and has a plan for me. I look at all He has given me and know that really, He has truly granted the desires of my heart. I think it's ok to dream and plan for the things above, but it's not ok to loose sight of what I already have. It's ok if the things above are just dreams in the sky that never come true. God has my life planned out. He only wants good things for me. They may not be the things I think are good or perfect, but see, my life is only God's and nothing more. My wants, needs and desires are the wants, needs, and desires that He wants for me.
Thank you, God.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Reading around the house

It's Homemaking Link Up Day at Raising Homemakers. Come and join the fun! Also be sure to check out the book The Family Daughter by 16yo Sarah Bryant listed in the blog post for the day at Raising Homemakers. I am looking forward to getting a copy for my girls.

I love to see my kids getting along, a bonus is the reading. :) When we go to the library we come home with two to three milk crates full of books. Each of the kids get the amount of books respectable to their ages. We start in the picture book section/fiction section and then move over to the non fiction section. Two books from the picture book section and the rest from the other section. I love seeing what they come up with especially in the non fiction section. I do take time to scan through books before they make it to the house. I believe that we as women are gatekeepers of our homes and one of our jobs is to keep up with what is coming in the gates.
I also make sure to check out board books for little lady. She actually does well with paper books, though she tore one the other day just trying to turn the page. She loves books and will ask you to read by signing book and saying, "buh."
Roy and I check out lots of books and let the kids see us reading all the time. They sit and read during in between times of the day. For example, after their rooms are tidied in the morning and they are waiting for breakfast to be ready they read. During our group school time if we are waiting for someone to finish something up they read. Sometimes if there is time right before dinner after our predinner clean up is done they read. During our 1-2 hour rest time every day they read.
The girls and I have talked about wanting to set up little reading nooks around the house, but right now that's not possible so everyone just finds a little corner to read in. My oldest likes to grab pillows and make herself a nest by our sliding glass back door. Jonathan loves the basket above or behind my recliner. The two other girls perch on the couch. Adrian lands wherever he sees an opening.
It's wonderful to see my kids reading to themselves and each other. It's one of my favorite parts of the day.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Betwixt and Between

Raising Homemakers

Raising Homemakers is at it again with a great post and a give away.
They are advertising a mentoring program for moms of girls ages 9-13, the "betwixt and between" stage. They'll be going through the Beautiful Girlhood book starting September 12. I'm very excited about this as I have two girl who fall into this age group. My oldest could probably benefit from it as well. We are going to spend the month of August working through Raising Maidens of Virtue so in September we'll just pick up the Beautiful Girlhood book as our next selection!
So click on over and see what's up.

Monday, July 25, 2011

What We Ate This Week

Thai Chicken Stirfry Salad from Pampered Chef. Here is the recipe I found online.It is a lot different from the recipe in my actual PC cookbook which is more like this:
Thai Chicken Stir-Fry Salad


1 1-inch piece peeled fresh gingerroot (I just used dried)

3/4 cup creamy poppy seed salad dressing

2 garlic cloves, pressed

1 medium cucumber

1 small red bell pepper

1 package (6 ounces) fresh baby spinach leaves

1 package (12 ounces) broccoli slaw mix

Chicken Mixture
1/4 cup snipped fresh basil

1/4 cup peanuts

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts

1. For dressing, finely chop gingerroot using Food Chopper. In Classic Batter Bowl, combine gingerroot, salad dressing and garlic pressed with Garlic Press; whisk until well blended and set aside.

2. For salad, score cucumber lengthwise using Zester/Scorer; remove seeds using The Corer(TM). Thinly slice cucumber and bell pepper; cut cucumber slices in half. Place spinach, slaw mix, cucumber and bell pepper into Simple Additions(R) Large Bowl; refrigerate until ready to serve.

3. For chicken mixture, snip basil using Kitchen Shears and chop peanuts with Food Chopper. Flatten chicken to 1/2-inch thickness using flat side of Meat Tenderizer; cut into 1/2-inch cubes. Lightly spray Skillet with oil using Kitchen Spritzer; heat over medium-high heat 1-3 minutes or until hot. Add chicken to Skillet in a single layer. Cook without stirring 2 minutes or until chicken begins to brown. Stir-fry 2-3 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink; remove Skillet from heat. Add basil, peanuts and 1/4 cup of the dressing to Skillet; toss to coat.

4. To serve, toss salad with remaining dressing; top with chicken mixture and serve immediately.

Yield: 8 servings

Nutrients per serving: Calories 210, Total Fat 10 g, Saturated Fat 1.5 g, Cholesterol 35 mg, Carbohydrate 13 g, Protein 16 g, Sodium 300 mg, Fiber 3 g

Variation: Thai Chicken Stir-Fry with Rice: Omit salad ingredients. Prepare dressing as directed in Step 1. Double the chicken mixture; prepare as directed in Step 3, stir-frying chicken in two batches. Toss chicken with all of the dressing. Serve chicken mixture over hot cooked rice prepared with Rice Cooker Plus.

So, so good. My husband declared it to be restaurant quality.

Steak, potatoes, and brocolli. The steak was bought on sale marked down almost 75%. About the only time we eat steak. :)
Chicken Marsala over rice, green peas, and watermelon. The recipe in Light and Tasty called for turkey tenderloin, but chicken breasts were cheaper so that's what we had.

We had this yummy Fruit Pizza from Light and Tasty recipes on steak night. It was pretty quick to throw together and used my leftover strawberries and some old blue berries I had.

Family Sized Burrito from Pampered Chef was very easy to make and the kids loved it! I served it with a shredded lettuce, sour cream, and salsa.

I have loved getting back in the kitchen. It was just one of those things I could not conquer this last year. My favorite part is plating the food. I like to make it look attractive for my family. I'm not good at photographing food so I know it does not look that great in the photos, but it really did look nice. As my friend says, "Pretty makes it taste better!"

Friday, July 08, 2011

Take the time

Blogger is still acting zany, so I will let you know I am still here with a picture of my beautiful baby! I had more to share but blogger won't let me upload anymore today! :)
Oh, and here is a wonderful quote:
If you haven't time to respond to a tug at your pants leg, your schedule is too crowded. ~Robert Brault

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Can you hear me now?

Blogger has been acting crazy on me this week. I have had issues logging in, uploading pictures, and uploading posts. Just wanted to let you know I'm still here. :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

One Little Corner - Kitchen Edition

Ok, I cheated. I started cleaning the fridge off before I took the picture. I remembered and put some stuff back and then took the picture. LOL It was so much worse than this. Color pages, pictures, magnets, OH MY!

Here, I have my weekly planner and our menu side by side. I got the printables from Organized Home. I also have the baby's alphabet letters she likes to play with down low for her. The bowls on top of the fridge were moved to another location and now I have a box of spices up there. The other basket is my husbands grill stuff.

I worked through my kitchen one corner at a time and it was so nice.

I'm still playing catch up from this weekend but I should have more photos for you this week.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Do what is necessary

"Start by doing what's necessary; then do what's possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible." - Saint Francis

This will be my quote as I go throughout the week. I have much to get done to get my house back to rights from all the partying this week. I have plenty of pictures to share of this past weekend and some of the changes I made around here. I should be back to posting pretty regularly now that our weekend is over.
I hope you all had a wonderful Father's Day weekend.

Monday, June 13, 2011

I long to accomplish great and noble tasks, but it is my chief duty and joy to accomplish humble tasks as though they were great and noble.
~Helen Keller

I am super busy getting the house together for Lily's party this week. I have some photos to share of the kitchen, which is not quite done. I had to revamp my schedule some, but it looks like I will still be done by Friday. Especially since my amazing husband agreed to take all of the kids with him tomorrow when he takes the big kids to piano. I will be rolling up my sleeves for sure during that time.

If I'm sporadic around here this week, please, know it's only temporary. :)

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Getting My House In Order

In a few short days this Princess will be 1. Wasn't it just yesterday I was blogging her birth story? Heck, wasn't it just yesterday I was blogging about being pregnant?? I can't believe how the time has flown. She's into everything these days, taking wobbly steps, drooling around her four baby teeth, singing, laughing, playing. I just taught her to say, "Uh-Oh" it's to stinkin' cute.

Do you LOVE these cheeks?? So kissable!

I took the plunge and scheduled her party for June 18th (her actual birthday) at my house. That means the next few days will be a whirlwind of finishing projects, deep cleaning, and rearranging stuff. I have a lot of stuff to get done and I work better with a firm deadline.

For the next three days I will be in the kitchen. I am decluttering as I go and rearranging everything along with a deep clean. I have three free standing shelves in there and a pantry. I need to get rid of the free standing shelves, except maybe one. It's a huge project and I only gave myself three days. If it's not done by Saturday, it's ok. I will just keep working til it's done. The other projects are not as big so if I end up with four or five days of kitchen work I will still have plenty of time.

If I finish the kitchen by Saturday I will move onto the dining room. I am moving our eating area into the kitchen, if it works out, and the dining room will be for toys and crafts. I have to move a china cabinet, bookshelf, and linen storage dresser somewhere else.

I have some ideas of where I will move them, but I'm still working it out.

I am giving myself Saturday and Monday for the dining room. Or the next two days after the kitchen is done.

The two or three days after that will be the School room. Some stuff to move out of there and a deep cleaning. One to two days for the hallways (decluttering and moving bookcases) and general cleaning of bathrooms and other rooms. It's ambitious but there are four capable cleaning people and three children who can help.

Princess Lily gets to sit and watch all the preparations for her big day. :)

I'm excited about progress I have already made and know that in the end we will all be so much happier when our house is in order! Plus, it should give me lots of blog fodder! :)

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

In the Kitchen - Helpers

One of my go to items in the kitchen is this seasoning blend. It has green and red peppers, onions, and parsley. It's great for eggs and omlets. I've used it for chicken dishes and meatloaves before as well. I used it for chicken burritos the other day. It's very versatile and let's face it at around a dollar or less a bag it's cheaper than peppers.
I'm a huge fan of frozen vegetables. If I can get it fresh I will, but frozen works for me. I'm not going to buy and prep fresh broccoli for this family. We love the frozen stuff. I buy corn fresh when it's on sale, but certain frozen corns are just as good. I don't buy carrots frozen. I can't find any frozen carrots as good making it fresh. For the most part I also buy all of my squash fresh, though I have found that Publix has good frozen squash in a pinch.
I'm starting to buy frozen fruit. With summer here it's been nice to have the fresh fruit, but I also found it's nice to have some in the freezer for smoothies and now to add to my yogurt. Yep, I'm back to making yogurt and I can't figure out why I ever stopped! It's so good.
Do you have any foods that make your meal prep a little easier?

This post is part of Homemaking Link Up day at Raising Homemakers.

Monday, June 06, 2011

A spot of earth

"What we need most, are benevolent wives, mothers, and sisters in the dwellings of our over-burdened laborers. We need women for whom the roof about them and the four walls which unclose their dear ones are the only world they care to know. We need women who set their hearts on making their homes pleasant, sunny, and fragrant for the husband. He who works from dawn till dusk for the little home and wife and babes, looks forward to the warm welcome that awaits him when the long day is over; of the bright smile and the loving words that will be sure to greet him when he crosses the threshold of his own little Eden; of the cheerful fire in winter and the humble meal made so delicious by the love that prepares it and the sweet words that season it. This rest, security, and peace will encourage the overflowing heart of the husband and father and brother to think and to say that there is no spot of earth so dear and so blessed as the little sanctuary built up and adorned and made full of song by the true woman's heart."
~ Daughters of Destiny, compiled and edited by Noelle Wheeler

I'm looking forward to a wonderful week of making my home a spot of earth dear and blessed for my family.
Dh is at a class all week for a security guard license so we will have a nice routine week moving busily from one task to the next.
I hope to finish my bedroom (just a few little touches) and begin work on the kitchen this week.
What are you hoping to start and/or finish this week?

Friday, June 03, 2011

One Little Corner - School Room Edition

Today I will show you a bit of our school corner. It's only one part of the school area. One corner.
Here is the before picture. I was trying to put portfolios together and organize some of our new school stuff. It was pretty bad. However, it only took about 30m to put it to rights again.

Here you can see the tables all cleaned off. While I was at it I also decluttered the mantle. I had some of Lily's baby dolls up there and now they are safely tucked away in her corner of our bedroom.

I righted the bookshelf. The basket by the fireplace holds blankets and throws. The kids enjoy wrapping up in them while reading or watching a movie. Yes, even in the summer. I sit in the rocking chair while we do our group work. The kids have bean bags and big pillows they sit on.

I love a cleared floor and a clean bookshelf. Now when I look at this corner, I smile. I have been more productive since polishing my corner. Portfolios are almost all ready for tomorrow's check, lessons are assigned, checked, and handed back in mere minutes now, and I am not always searching for a book.

I'm having so much fun making my house a home, one corner at a time.

What corner of your home can you make pretty today?

Thursday, June 02, 2011

10 Disciplines for Home Management

10 Disciplines for Home Management

1.You shall be dedicated to managing your home.

Titus 2:5

2. You shall be a woman of prayer.

Prayer changes our housework, because prayer changes the heart of a homemaker.

3. You shall be aware of the basics.

The basics of food, clothing, cleanliness, and safety are parts of your responsibility to your family.

4. You shall follow a schedule.

When yours days, weeks, months, and years run on a rhythm, your work at home gets done. Everything might not get done, but more gets done when you schedule it than when you don't.

5. You shall be organized.

Whatever the method of organization, and there are many, it always aids in the smooth running of a household.

6. You shall be there.

Exactly how do our good housekeeping chores get done? They get done when we the homemakers and housekeeper are there - when we are at home.

7.You shall be the best.

"Okay, I have to keep the house clean. I need to create order.I've got to see to three meals a day. So why not be the best? Why not excel? Why not exceedingly bless my family and others?"

8. You shall be reading.

Even if you learned nothing about homemaking when you were growing up, all you have to do is read and learn now.

9. You shall be frugal.

Thrift and wise management of money are Biblical virtues that bless our family.

10. You shall be creative.

From Elizabeth George's book Life Management for Busy Women

I have been thinking about these things since I read them yesterday. I have started in the last few weeks really applying most of them. It has created such a huge difference in our home. School is getting done, cleaning is coming along, I do feel that I am getting a handle on this organizing thing. It's amazing how applying just few simple principles can change everything.

I feel great about being a homemaker again. What joy!

What is one thing from the above disciplines that you need to work on? What will you start doing today?

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

One Little Corner - Bedroom Edition

Who knew getting a picture post up would be so hard? I finally got these pictures taken this morning. It's mostly Lily's corner in my bedroom, with my corner thrown in and a special project from Jonathan (5).
This is part of Lily's corner in our room. I just came up with the idea of putting up the cards we got when she was born as decorations. It's only been about a year. Yeah, I'm so on top of things. LOL This does go to show, though, with just a little imagination you can create something really cute for little to no money.
Of course her 1st birthday is coming up so we will have some new cute cards to add to the collection.
Here is Lily's bed and her toys and dirty clothes basket. All of my babies have slept in pack n plays until they moved to their own room. The "L" on the left was made by my friend Christina and has a lot of hair bows, also made by Christina. She can't wear them yet, poor little bald baby. The "L" on the right was painted for her at a pottery place by her daddy a few months before she was born. I have some ideas for the wall over her bed, but I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet.
This is my corner. I sit here and nurse Lily, I read my Bible, I read my book by Elizabeth George, I talk to my hubby. It's a nice corner. Behind the chair are some diapers in bigger sizes and a box of extra baby toiletries.
Jonathan made my bed this morning. He said I did not know how to make it so he better do it for me. :) Guess what? I did not go back and remake it. It makes me smile every time I walk into my room. He loves to make my bed.

What one little corner can you make beautiful today?

I linked this post at Raising Homemakers for Link Up day. If you have never visited their site it's full of wonderful tips and ideas for raising up our little girls.