Tuesday, February 27, 2024

A Beautiful Weekend

Happy Tuesday, Friends!

I hope your week is off to a good start. I will say that Monday was a strange day, but I didn't have jury duty, so I was thrilled to have the day as my own. I started off the day by waking at 4:15 a.m., which is early for me. I usually wake around 5:00 a.m., but the 4's are starting to creep in slowly. 

I decided to splurge and get my nails done (hopefully for the last time). I've only gotten them done a few times this past year, but the last time I removed them at home, I really damaged them and they have been thin and breaking for the past month. They wouldn't grow back at all, so I decided to get a set put on so that my real nails will have a chance to grow. 

When I got to the nail salon, I ended up with a male nail tech, which is not my preference. But I didn't want to be rude, so I just went with it. Usually the women don't have much to say, while doing my nails, but this man talked so much that an hour long appointment turned out to be almost 2 hours! Every time he would start talking, he would stop working on my nails! He talked about plants, then went into a very long discussion about how food can heal your body from illnesses. Apparently he was very passionate about the subject and would have talked for another hour, had I had the patience to listen. 

Eventually I had to start looking at my watch and moving back in my chair, just to signal to him that I was ready to go. But even at the register, he wanted to continue the chat. I had equal parts of annoyance and empathy for him, as he seemed to feel very deeply about what he was saying, but he also didn't take into account that he had already kept me for way too long. 

I will say that I think he repeated some steps on my nails, several times, because he kept getting distracted. But he gave me some helpful advice and told me I could keep them on for a month, to allow my natural nail to grow. Was it worth it? I suppose so. But truthfully, not sure I'll go back for the soak off. I'll have to think about it 😅 

 

In other news...Sunday was the most beautiful, spring-like day we've had in a long time. David and I went to the kid's church and had lunch with half of them. We ended up bringing the three girls home for the day and spent most of the day outside.

Our neighbors, that we share the lake with, had some friends over who were taking their jet skies for a run and it was fun to watch them having fun on the lake. 

The girls rode their bikes and played with the neighbor girls for a while in the yard, while David and I had coffee on the back porch. 

Then it was time to fix supper and take them home. 



Of course, we had to do a craft while at Millie and PawPaw's. This is their favorite thing to do. While they painted, I made some chocolate chip cookies. I gave them their first taste of cookie dough, which they loved. 


On Saturday I bought my first plant of the season. I wanted to fill up this adorable planter the kids gave me last Mother's Day. It sits on my back porch table. 







Friday I had a craft day with my friend Kim and we made another creation off of Instagram. That's basically what we all do now, is pass around craft ideas to one another through messages. Or organizing ideas, recipes, things to make or buy. But it's fun and we get some fun ideas.

This was a spring idea, where you take a round, wooden disc and glue straws to the front. Sounds easy enough, except that Kim's electricity went out that morning and we couldn't use glue guns, so we had to improvise and use ModPodge and Elmer's glue. It took twice as long to finish the project because the glue took much longer to dry.



But here's the finished product and it turned out pretty good. Eventually I might change out the flowers for some that don't look so fake, but for now it's ok. It adds a touch of color to my office door and it was fun making it. 

Today I have a long list of things to catch up on. I was really tired yesterday and the weather was gloomy, so I didn't get much done. But today is the day!

Kim and I have another craft day tomorrow, before she leaves for another month, so I'm baking a cake, cleaning and getting our paper supplies ready, so we can work on our junk journals tomorrow. I'm looking forward to learning some new things about book binding, that I will share later. 

But for now, I'm off to finish my coffee, read my assigned chapter in my Growing Slow book and get ready for the day. 

Thanks for reading this far! I know this was a long post full of random things. 

I appreciate you 😀💖

Until Next Time...
Blessings! 




Friday, February 23, 2024

My Week and Possibly Jury Duty - Uggg!


 Hello Friends!

I can't believe we're at the end of another week! This year is already flying by. It's been a great week, though, with lots of time around the house. 

This week I made a quick trip to Hobby Lobby, hoping to find some sales on outdoor items. They were having a sale on their Spring Shop line, but even at that, the handful of stuff I bought cost twice as much as I planned on spending. I did buy a few things for the yard, but it hardly made a difference, since I wasn't able to buy a lot. 

However, I found a set of wooden tags, like the one above, and they were only $3.00 for 12, which was a steal! I love tags and especially these. They are heavy and perfect for craft projects or a keepsake gift tag for someone. 

I had some fun yesterday making this one out of a vintage book page. Of course I used ModPodge, my new best friend apparently. 😀 I use it a lot these days. 

The little felt flower came in a package I found in the Easter section of Hobby Lobby. I have found that shopping in the holiday aisle is always cheapest, because their holiday stuff is always on for 50% off. 

I will probably hang this on my lamp, next to my bed, so I can see it every night when I turn my lamp out. 

Tuesday was Family Dinner night, so I usually spend Tuesdays cleaning and cooking. But this week I just wasn't feeling any food and couldn't decide on anything. So I splurged and bought Chick-Fil-A. Obviously I can't do that every week, but once in a while is nice. 

Wednesday I organized my office closet. With crafts stored there and the girl's games, puzzles, playdoh, etc., it tends to get messy quickly. It often needs a refresh and this was the day to do it. 

I also have scrapboxes for each of my boys that I need to go through. I have loose photos waiting to be put in an album. Plus all of my sewing and craft projects. It's a closet that can feel like it's pressuring me with all of its "to-do's".  I think I spend more time organizing my projects, than actually working on them! 

Yesterday I hung some pictures around the house. Ever since we moved into this house, I've had pictures that needed to be put somewhere, but I just haven't done it. I did get a few up, but then the pest control guy was scheduled to come, so I put those away and straightened up everything so he could spray. 

Does anyone else dread having people come to your house (for maintenance type jobs)? Is it just that I'm not a small talk kind of person and it's awkward to have to carry on conversations with people I barely know? Ugggg. It's not my favorite!

Speaking of "ugggg", I possibly have to report for jury duty on Monday and I'm literally praying that God spares me from this task! I'm not good at being on a jury. I've only done it once and hated every minute of it. I won't know until after 5:00 p.m. today, when I will call the number to see if I have to appear. I'm praying for a "NO"!

In the meantime, I'm headed to my friend Kim's today for some lunch and a craft. That should help take my mind off jury duty 😅

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I'll be back next week ( unless I'm at the courthouse 😏)


Until Next Time...

Blessings!



Tuesday, February 20, 2024

We All Have Our Place to Serve

 Hello Friends!

How is your week going? Things are supposed to warm up, here in Texas, and I am so ready! I'm just tired of being cold, you know?

Over the weekend, David and I had lunch with a friend and it brought to mind some things that I feel very strongly about and thought I'd share here, just in case anyone else has ever felt the same.

It's about church.

This particular friend was sharing his frustration over being repeatedly asked to serve in some capacity at church. He recently came back to church and honestly, only recently came back to faith, after many years of not being in church. I'm not saying he wasn't close to God, because I don't know that. But he only recently made church a regular part of his life. 

Fast forward a few months and he was expressing his frustration over being made to feel that he needed to be serving somewhere in the church...right now. 

This friend has a ministry that I won't name here, because I don't want to reveal his identity, but I assure you, he is putting good into the world every week. 

I was saddened as he explained his frustration over being hounded weekly by church staff. I've been there, so I instantly understood what he was feeling.

When I was smack in the middle of mothering and homeschooling two small boys, I felt the same way. Especially as a mom at home, people tend to think you have ample time to add all the outside activities, such as teaching, serving, attending all the church services, etc. And the truth is, there are days when you're doing good to keep your own humans alive, much less prepare a Sunday School lesson or serve on a committee.

At the time, I had a viable blog with a big following and I wrote daily devotional type posts. I also wrote and taught a women's Bible study once a week. But my main ministry was right there, in my home, as I taught and trained my little boys to love the Lord. I was pouring my heart and soul into my home and family and that left little time for other things.

I would watch other women drop their kids off in the church nursery every chance they got. Their kids were being drug here and there, any time the doors were open and they chose the church over their kids, every time. They wouldn't dare think of not serving, yet they would bring their kids to church, rain or shine, sick or tired. It didn't matter. They were going to serve at the church. 

I chose differently and sometimes, I'll just be honest...I was treated like a sluggard; like I didn't want to serve the Lord, just because I wasn't doing it out front, in the building, on a weekly basis. 

I eventually developed a thick skin (homeschooling will do that to you) and got comfortable with the fact that my home was my ministry and I was serving the Lord by serving my family and even serving friends and loved ones who were in need.

You see, it took me years to realize that ministry takes place outside the walls of the church. In fact, if your only service is inside the church walls and only in church appointed tasks, then you might be missing the bigger picture. 

What we do to minister and testify to the world, is what Jesus was all about. Going along the way and meeting people where they are, sharing the good news and demonstrating faith. Loving people at your job, meeting their physical and spiritual needs and spreading the Gospel through your daily actions. That's ministry!

There is so much on this topic that I could elaborate on, but that would be too long of a post. But I will just say that what I saw in our friend - the frustration and even questioning his own worth - is what will make someone leave the church faster than a sermon on tithing. 

You know, I've heard pastors shame those who are more like Martha in the Bible - the one who wanted to serve Jesus, fix his food, make sure he had everything he needed. She was the busy bee of the story and she always got the bad rap. But Mary was praised, for "choosing the better thing," which was sitting at the feet of Jesus and just being still.

Isn't it funny that the modern day church wants us to be so busy, yet condemns Martha for that very thing?

The bottom line is that Christians are to be about ministry - wherever they go.  Some work at church, some work in the entertainment industry, some in industrial jobs, some are at home with babies and kids. What matters is that you love Jesus and that he shines through you, wherever you are. We are all called to different walks and tasks and to make someone feel like their area of ministry isn't legitimate or enough, is not right. 

You know why Jesus tells us about the thief on the cross? I believe it's to absolutely demonstrate that there is nothing required but belief and faith in who Jesus is, and what he did for us.  That man didn't serve on a committee, he didn't attend church, he didn't speak in tongues or heal anyone. He simply looked at Jesus, as he was hanging beside him, and spoke his faith out loud and Jesus told him there would be a place for him in paradise. Period. The end.

I write all of this, not to condemn anyone, but simply to remind us...the church...that we all have our place. Some serve inside the church and some serve outside. But we are all valuable and we all have a ministry. It just might not look like the other guy's and that's ok. We need to be ok with that too.


Until Next Time...

Blessings! 



Monday, February 19, 2024

The Duties of a Home Manager

 Hello everyone 💛

Have you ever been asked to explain what you do all day, if you're a work-at-home mom? When I say "work-at-home" I'm not referring to moms who have a job they get paid to do, at home. I'm referring to moms who stay home and their home is their work. Better known as "stay-at-home" moms.

I personally think we should change that name, because it gives the false impression that we stay at home and leaves out the "work" part, which is mostly what occupies our time.

I was recently re-reading an old book about homemaking and the author listed all the jobs that a work-at-home mom does and the list is very long. I thought it would be fun to share that list here and it, most likely, won't even be everything there is to do, but it's a good start.

Oh, and she gives herself the title of HOME MANAGER, which I think is absolutely fitting and the perfect description for those times when someone dares to ask, "What do you do all day?"


The Duties of a Home Manager

Budgeting

Cooking

Cleaning

Organizing

Inventory of household goods

Inventory of seasonal clothing

Menu Planning

Grocery Shopping

Appointment making

Holiday planning

Decluttering

Buying

Decorating

Social Manager

Nurse

Researcher of recipes, stain removal, home remedies

Caretaker of all humans in her care

Packing

Planning

Laundry 

Gift finder

Gift wrapper

Hair stylist

Child care worker

Administrative work

Seamstress

Coupon cutting

Thrifting

Gardening

Playground duty

Teacher (this includes an entire list of it's own, when

you homeschool!)


I'm sure you can add your own duties to this long list, but you get the idea. Home management is no joke! If we were paid, based off of this list, we would have a pretty hefty salary, wouldn't we?

I have been a work-at-home mom for 31 years now. I quit working outside the home one week before my first son was born. Before that, I had been working since I was 16 years old. 

When David and I married, I told him that I wouldn't have kids unless I could stay home and raise them myself. So we both worked, went to college and the year before my son was born, we lived only off David's income, so we could save mine and get accustomed to having one salary. Our planning paid off and when our son was born, we were in good shape. Well, good enough. David made about $20,000 that year, but soon moved onto bigger and better jobs.

Through the years of me being the Home Manager, David has lost several jobs. But I believe God has always honored my heart's desire of taking care of my own children, because I have never had to get another outside job. Oh, I could have, if I wanted to own more things, travel more, buy more and live a different lifestyle. But to me, nothing was more valuable than being at home, raising and teaching my boys.

Even now, even with David losing his job a year ago, we've discussed many times, the idea of me getting a job outside the home, and every time the answer is "no." David values what I do here and he knows that he couldn't tackle that long list without me. And I appreciate that he values what I do.

There may come a day when I choose to work outside the home, but I know that decision will alter how our home looks and feels and it will also change in other ways too. Because, the truth is, we can only do so much and when you add outside duties, the inside duties will get neglected, to a certain degree.

So even though I don't earn a paycheck, I think I'll keep my Home Management job. The hours aren't bad and I do get breaks during the day. I also get Millie Days and travel days and I can stop and read a chapter or two now and then. Oh, and snacks! I get snacks 😋 Of course, I'm the one who has to bake them or buy them, but then again...that's my job.


If I've left anything off the list, feel free to add them to the comments.


Until Next Time...

Blessings!










Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Happy Valentine's Day (and some dessert mishaps)!

 Good Morning Friends! And Happy Valentine's Day 💗

I can't believe it's already Wednesday! This week is flying by. 



Last night we had our weekly family dinner and I set the table with fancy plastic plates and had the kid's gifts set out, ready for them to see as they walked through the door. 

I filled the girl's baskets with the hearts I made last week and some treats, such as candy hearts, cookies, silly string, crayons and a pink calculator from Dollar Tree. The boys got Gold Fish, cookies, chocolate hearts (for their parents to eat), Cheerios and a toy truck. It's always so much fun to see the kid's faces light up at a basket full of goodies. 

For dinner we had tamales, chili, corn dip, and fritos. The weather had turned cold again this week, so the chili worked out nicely. 


 My daughter-in-love, Alex, made this beautiful cookie cake. It tasted as good as it looked 💗😋

Morgan and I both had mishaps with our desserts. I planned on making a cherry dump cake, which I have made so many times before. But I made the mistake of only having one can of cherry pie filling on hand and once I poured the cake mix on top, I knew it wasn't going to go right. So I mixed the butter, cake mix and one can of cherry pie filling all together and baked it. It came out like a fluffy cherry cake. It wasn't bad (in fact, David loved it), but it wasn't quite what I had planned. 

Poor Morgan had baked cupcakes for the night, but when she put them on her table so she wouldn't forget them when time to go, little Asa reached for them and down they went...all over the floor. I felt so bad for her. But, it truly is the thought that counts. I know that didn't make her feel better, but I appreciated her effort. 

That reminds me of a time, many years ago, when I made the famous "Chocolate Delight" as we called it. It probably has many names and can be found in all the church cookbooks, but it's the layered dessert that has the butter and pecan crust, layered with chocolate pudding and cool whip all the way to the top of the baking dish. It's one of my favorites. 

Well, I made one for our family (no special occasion) and we had it for dessert after a meal, then I put it in the fridge for the night. When I woke up the next morning and walked into the kitchen, there was the entire dessert sitting on the counter. Apparently David had snuck into the kitchen after I went to bed, and had more dessert, but forgot to put it back in the fridge. As you can imagine, you can't leave pudding and cool whip on the counter all night, so in the trash it went. Needless to say, that one took me a while to get over. 

So, we've all been there 😉

Today will be a catch up day. Washing towels, mopping, getting the playroom back in order. I also have a few errands to run and then hopefully catching up on The Bachelor when I get home. Yes, I watch the Bachelor. Have since Collin was a baby and he's about to turn 25!!

I'm still doing the online Bible study called Growing Slow. It's probably one of the best ones I've done. I'm  really enjoying it and enjoying the small community of women who are on the thread with me. In fact, I have a chapter to read this morning, so I better get going.

I hope you all have a wonderful day and I will check in soon.

Until Next Time...
Blessings!




Friday, February 9, 2024

A Sweet Valentine Craft Project

Happy Friday friends!

 How has your week been? It's been slow and steady over here and it's felt nice to have some time to just be home and work on the house and a special craft project. 

I've cooked some yummy food this week: lasagna, brisket and potatoes, Mexican cornbread and beans, and made David his lunches of ham sandwiches, chips and snacks. One day I did go out for the BOGO pizza deal at Schlotzsky's. Otherwise, I've been content to eat my own food and leftovers for the week, which felt good. 

I've also been busy with a special craft project I wanted to make for the girls. I saw my friend Patty do this on her latest Lemons and Larkspur video, so I thought I would give it a try. Since Valentine's Day is next week, I thought it would be fun to add these to whatever little treats I buy for them. 

I dug through my two baskets of fabric pieces and found some colors to put together. I do all of my sewing at the kitchen table, so first I had to move everything from my office to the dining room.

This is my rolling, sewing cart. It stores nicely in a corner of my office, out of the way and when I need to haul everything into the dining room to sew, it is perfect for moving it all at once.


I started by making a heart stencil from a piece of cardboard backing on a pack of paper I had. I traced a heart onto the cardboard and then used that to trace onto the fabric. 

Next, I found some colors that would look good in contrast, and cut the strips to go across the front of the heart. (Again, Patty shows this in her video.)

I sewed the hearts all the way, but leaving enough open to fill with stuffing, later on. Once the hearts were sewn, I turned them right side out and used fabric glue to put the strips on the front. 

I probably should have sewn the strips onto the front side, before sewing the hearts together, but I didn't think about it, so I had to do the next best thing...use glue. 




Here's the finished product 💗 I used a stamp to put their names on each one and then added the buttons just for fun.


On the back, I cut a smaller piece of fabric and wrote my name. I sat and watched tv while sewing these tags on the back. I needed a little break from the kitchen table 😅

I haven't done any significant sewing for many years and this was actually a lot of fun. I used to sew when the boys were little, but as they got older, the sewing machine went into the closet and rarely came out.

But, back to the hearts...
I made a little trip up to the Dollar Tree and bought a few goodies for the girls and the baby boys and came back home to put together their Valentine treats. Next week, when we have family dinner, I'll have a sweet surprise for the kids, as they come in the door. I hope the girls keep their hearts for years to come and they know that their Millie had a lot of fun making them. Next I will have to make something for the baby boys. I suspect that will require a tutorial of some sort. I mean, how do you make a truck out of fabric? Hmmm...I see a challenge ahead of me 😅

Today I'm taking a quick road trip with David, as he goes about an hour up the road for work. It will be nice to get out and go for a ride. We have Addie's birthday party tomorrow and church on Sunday. More rain is scheduled for the weekend, but that's ok. Well, all except for the fact that we have places to go.

It's been a slow week and it's felt great to be at home, accomplishing things on the list (except for the taxes, which were a great disappointment). Right now my life seems to be in a rhythm of a slow week then a busy week, slow week, busy week.  I'm not hating it, actually! The slow week is giving me fuel for the busy weeks and it's a great give and take. 

There is so much more I want to share and I hope to do that soon. I've been doing a wonderful Bible Study and gleaning so many good things from it. My plan is to write about that soon. But for now, it's time for
a 2nd cup of coffee and getting ready for the day ahead.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and I plan on catching up on everyone's latest posts this morning.

I'm so thankful for all of you!

Until Next Time...
Blessings!

Sunday, February 4, 2024

A Simple Craft and A Good Weekend

 Hello Everyone!

It's early Sunday morning and I'm just stopping in to share a few things about my week.



On Wednesday I got together with my friend Kim and we worked on some fun craft projects. We painted mason jars to look like sea glass, which we will use as a vase at some point. This was such an easy project and once they dried, they looked so pretty. 

The process was so simple. Mix 1-2 drops of food coloring in 1/4 cup of Modpodge, stir until well mixed and then brush it on the jar with a paintbrush. As it dries, the Modpodge texture will disappear and you'll be left with a pretty glass jar. 

These were so fun and easy and will make the perfect vase for some spring and summer flowers. 



Friday was Millie Day and these three turkeys talked me into getting them Chick-Fil-A for breakfast after I picked them up.  We had a fun day of playing inside and outside and lots of singing in the car, to and from their house. At one point, we FaceTimed my mom, who was working, and the girls entertained her by showing off their cartwheels and piano playing. My mom was thrilled to see them, even through the phone screen. 

Saturday David and I had lunch and then went to Kroger for a quick grocery run. I had some coupons that were about to expire, so we used the coupons as our list of what to buy and added a few other items, as well. I love that Kroger sends me coupons of the items I buy on a regular basis. Every now and then I will go and only buy what I have a coupon for. Even at that, our bill was ridiculous.

While we were waiting in line at Kroger, I saw our DIL, Morgan, a few lines over, so I had to run over and give her a hug. She was out buying a few items for Asa. She looked as cute as ever, of course. She's such a fashionable lady. That was a bright spot in our day 😀

David and I spent the rest of the afternoon cleaning out the guest/play room. It desperately needed an overhaul. Toys were out of control and there were some items that needed to be moved to the storage shed.  I'm hoping my mom can come for a visit soon and I want to make sure the room feels nice for her while she's here. 

David also made a run back to town to deliver a toy bin to Ted and Alex and pick up a chair they needed to move. Lots of action going on that day!

But at the end of the day, we finally sat down and spent the evening folding clothes and watching tv together. It was a good day.

Tonight I'm making dinner for our sister-in-law, who's coming to visit. We haven't seen her in way too long and she's never seen our house, so we are looking forward to having her here for dinner. 

Well, I'm signing off for today, but will be back soon to share a testimony about God's goodness.

I hope your Sunday is blessed beyond what you ever expected 💜

Until Next Time...
Blessings!


Thursday, February 1, 2024

Hello Friends and Happy February!

 Hello Friends!

As I stopped by a few blogs this morning, I read Jennifer's post and thought it would be fun to answer some of the questions on her list today and a few of my own. Here goes...  

#1 - What we've been up to...

Over the weekend we had our oldest granddaughter Emmy spend the night with us. We love spending one-on-one time with all the grands, because they really thrive when they have space to just be themselves, without their siblings. 

So we picked Emmy up on Saturday afternoon and she stayed until Sunday night. As always, she had us blowing and going, with her agenda, which included her learning how to latch hook, watching I Love Lucy and Pink Panther reruns, going to church, eating cheeseburgers for lunch and then taking her PawPaw to a museum he had never been to. We also stopped by City Hall so she could see her daddy's star on the Walk of Fame. We taught her how to play Crazy 8's (card game), marbles and just had such a fun time all weekend. 







We were all sad when it was time to go home, but full of love and good memories too. Plus we knew she would be back on Tuesday for Family Dinner, so we knew we would survive the goodbye. 😂


#2 - What I've Been Working On...

I've been wanting an extra bookshelf just for photo books and albums, to go in the living room, and last week I bought one. However, it was too plain and didn't really add anything to the space, so one day I decided to try a little DIY project on it and I think it turned out pretty cute.



I had some Pioneer Woman sticky shelf paper laying around and it was the perfect thing to use for this project. It wasn't a hard project, so I would definitely do another one of these, if I need a bookshelf again. 

My goal is to have all of my photo books out on this shelf for the kids and grandkids to look through whenever they want. As a kid, I remember photo albums being a huge part of our lives and I want to share the same with my kids. 

#3 - What I'm Watching and Reading...

This week I started an online Bible Study with a group of ladies. I am friends with one of the leaders, so I know one of the participants. I'm not sure if everyone is local or from other places, but so far I've really enjoyed it.


It's a study about slowing down, which is always relevant, in this day and time. 

As far as what I'm watching - I've been watching Season 2 of The Traitors and All Creatures Great and Small.  One is a game show and the other is, of course, the story of James Harriet, the vet. 

#4 - What I'm Looking Forward to...

Today I'm having a craft day with my friend Kim. This always includes lunch at our favorite place (which we get to-go and enjoy it back at her house. Then tomorrow I'm meeting up with an old friend, who I haven't seen in months. Every now and then we will meet for a catching up lunch, which I thoroughly enjoy.


#5 - What I'm Dreading...

Something I'm dreading is doing my taxes and gathering all of last year's paperwork and putting it all away. It's not a hard task, just one I dread doing. 


#6 - What I'm Looking Forward To...

Spring. I am so ready to see a pretty yard again! The ideas are starting to flow and I'm looking forward to having some color back in the yard. 


#7 - What I'm Excited About...

My 3 books are in print and e-book format now and available on Amazon! (See the sidebar).

I originally published my books on a platform called Blurb and they sent them to Amazon. But I knew I would need to switch over at some point, just for the sake of simplicity and cutting out that third party, but I dreaded it, due to the technical aspect of learning a new thing. But the week of the freeze, when we were all stuck inside, I took advantage of the time and got all of my books switched over and created the e-book versions. This was a huge accomplishment for me and one that will allow me to move forward now, with new projects. 




And with that, I'll close this post out by saying Happy February! Also, this post was started on Wednesday, but I wasn't able to finish and hit publish until Thursday 😅 But we're all caught up now, so I hope you enjoyed it. 

Have a wonderful day and I'll see you soon!


Until Next Time...

Blessings!





Thursday, January 25, 2024

Soup's On!

 

Well, I can say the drought in Texas is officially over! We've had enough rain this week to get us through the next few months, I believe. But that didn't stop life, like the freeze did last week, so we've been carrying on with all the things this week and trying to figure out whether to wear short sleeves or long sleeves and whether we need the heat or the A/C.  It's Texas y'all.🤠🐮

We had family dinner on Tuesday, which is always a blessing. I served BBQ on slider buns, mac and cheese, pinto beans, chips and dip, and we all had ice cream for dessert. 

The babies were all adorable and I think I got a hug from each one, at some point 😀 You have to catch them first. They hit the door and start running for the playroom, which is ok with me. It makes me happy to see them enjoying the space I made for them. 

Yesterday my friend Kim braved the stormy weather and came for lunch. I made a super simple lunch with Tomato Basil Soup I bought at Sam's and some mini Nan bread from there, as well. It was delicious.

We had my favorite kind of day, which consisted of lots of talking, good food, and sharing ideas about crafts and projects we both want to embark on.

Kim brought her junk journal she recently started and her own supplies and she worked on those at the table while I fixed lunch. We also went back to my office and I showed her how I decorate my journals and my writing notebook full of stories, as she has just recently started writing stories for her grandkids.

We ate lunch and cleared off the table and had another hour or so of just visiting and catching up. 

Those are seriously my favorite types of days with friends and family - just good conversations (and some yummy food). 

Today I have a few things on the To-Do list, but will have some down time too, which I'm looking forward to. 

I bought a new bookshelf for the living room and will attempt to decorate it today with wallpaper to make it more appealing. Maybe I'll take before and after photos and share them here. I haven't been taking pictures lately because everything has either been frozen outside or covered in water from all the rain and everything just looks brown and ugly this time of year. 

I need to get back to taking pictures, I know.  I plan to do better.

Well, it's time to get ready for the day. I think sweatpants and a cozy top are on the list today. Who am I kidding? That's the standard these days, if I'm home alone. 😅 

I hope you all have a wonderful day full of things you love. 

Until Next Time...

Stay cozy!


  

Monday, January 22, 2024

Tell Your Stories

 


Hey Friends...

This morning I want to share a story with you that I hope will inspire you and encourage you, if you're going through a hard time or know someone who is. 

My sweet daughter-in-love, Morgan, lost her mom 5 years ago to cancer. Morgan was 19. Way too young to lose anyone, much less, her mom. 

But she recently shared a tradition that she has, of going back to the hospital and praying with a family who has a loved one in the ICU. I thought this was beautiful and it reminded me of a scripture that used to be one of my favorites, in years past, whenever David and I would experience a trial.

In 2 Corinthians 1:4, the Bible says:

"He comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any kind of affliction, through the comfort we ourselves receive from God." 

Those words have held me through some scary trials of a young married girl. When David experienced his first job loss, we had a mortgage and a baby, and I was scared. 

I had always known that I would stay home with my children, and a job loss threatened the life we were trying to build for our family. 

I remember talking to some older gentlemen at church and hanging on their every word, as they spoke hope over our situation. They had all "been there" - job loss and other trials - and made it through every one. 

As they would share their experiences and how God supplied all of their needs, my hope increased, and I knew that if God would care for them, he would also care for us, and it just brought such comfort every time they would share what they went through. 

As the years went by and we survived several other job losses, I wondered about other losses in life, such as losing a loved one and how we would ever make it through. Then the unthinkable happened and my aunt lost a 19 year old daughter and I watched her to see how she made it. Years later she lost a husband and again, I watched to see how one makes it through such heartache. 

What I learned is that losses come, but it's what you do afterwards that determines how you survive. 

Watching my aunt go through the losses and yet, still live and thrive, gave me hope and so much encouragement, that should I ever go through something, I would remember how she did it and keep going too.

Sure enough, one year later, my father became deathly ill and was in ICU for so long. When he finally left this earth, on his way to heaven, I knew I would make it through, because I had evidence of others who had made it. And I did. 

But back to Morgan...

When I learned about what she has been doing - ministering to families in the ICU - I instantly thought of that scripture in 2 Corinthians, and it truly warmed my heart. 

God is using her to do exactly what he laid out in his Word - comforting those who come behind us, by sharing the comfort we ourselves have received from the Lord.

That is the best gift we can give someone going through a loss or a trial - our testimony of how God showed up and how he sustained us, through our hurt. It's the basic human need, to know that we will survive. 

Morgan is not only surviving, but she is living out God's desire for us to provide comfort to those who are hurting. She is ministering to others in their time of need. 

I can't think of any better way for her to honor her mom. I know her mom would be so proud of her. I know I am. 

As this post comes to an end, I just want to encourage you to testify to God's work in your life. It's what we all need to hear! It's the very thing God might want to use in someone else's life, to get them through a tough time.


Until Next Time...

Tell your stories 💛

Friday, January 19, 2024

My Week in a Nutshell

 

Happy Friday, Friends 😀 

How's your week been? Freezing? Faucets dripping? Faucets frozen? Hot water heater on its last leg? Stuck inside for days on end? Not hating it that much and then going nuts?

That sums up my week 😀

But really, it's been a week of wacky weather and I've spent a lot of time this week editing books, uploading manuscripts, editing some more and learning how to navigate all the technical stuff of self-publishing. More than I ever wanted to learn. But it's been a productive week and I am happy about that!

On the home front...I think I've eaten all of January's calories in the past 4 days😅  Being stuck inside is not good for my diet! 

Some of my plants didn't make it. That's kind of sad. And I've discovered that I'm not really a winter kind of person. When it warmed up to the high 40's yesterday, it felt like spring had arrived and I was so happy!  Now tonight will bring more freezing temps and then next week it will rain on most days. Welcome to Texas. We change our minds a lot!

Today I'm picking up my three granddaughters and we're having a Millie Day. I know I'll get my exercise today, so I can feel better about all the calories I ate this week. 

I've been itching for a good redecorating project or a spring cleaning session or just anything that doesn't have to do with computers or sitting. 

Well, my week has been less than eventful (except for all the weather), so there's not much more to report.

If you've done any fun household projects or organizational things, please indulge me and tell me all about it in the comments. I need motivation!

Until Next Time...

Stay cozy!