Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tuesdays Unwrapped

This I love.

Our oldest daughter at home, Miss Hannah (you can read her blog here), has decided to teach her younger siblings piano. Not only is she teaching them, but she has been scouring the bargain/clearance aisle at Michaels and any other store that we enter for little treats as rewards for practicing.

Check out Chatting at the Sky to read other "Tuesdays Unwrapped" posts and see some great inspiration for "delighting in the daily." Love this!

Rejoicing in today,

Monday, July 20, 2009

Endless gifts... #s10-20

In my ongoing effort to remember to remember and give thanks... (prompted by Ann @ Holy Experience)

my current issue of "Endless Gifts"..... given from God

and gratefully received by me.

10. summer flowers

11. older children gently caring for younger siblings
12. bluebirds observed on my early morning bike ride.
13. my camera and the opportunity to focus, capture and delight in everyday moments here.
14. a successful knee replacement surgery for my father today.
15. daily phone calls from my two oldest children~ now "flown the nest." It brings me great joy to hear them relate what the Lord is teaching them as they "own" their own walk with the Lord now.
16. washers and driers
17. the privilege of my very own copy of God's Word and no fear of reprisal for delighting in reading it
18. many little arms who share an abundance of hugs with me each day
19. slower days of summer to simply "be" with my children
20. my sewing machine~ a simple workhorse. It has given my girls and I many hours of creative satisfaction.

Deliberately rejoicing in God's good gifts, graciously given (I couldn't resist!),


I've been contemplating thirst lately. Ashamed at my propensity to seek fulfillment from sources other than the Lord.

Why is it, when I have walked with the Lord so many years and have seen Him faithful over and over, that I continue to be "prone to wander?"

Jer 2:13 "For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, The fountain of living waters, To hew for themselves cisterns, Broken cisterns That can hold no water.

I know that nothing can satisfy my heart like the Lord Jesus, and yet I forget.... silly me!

"And He had to pass through Samar. So He *came to a city of Samaria called Sychar, near the parcel of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph; and Jacob's well was there. So Jesus, being wearied from His journey, was sitting thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour. There *came a woman of Samaria to draw water. Jesus *said to her, "Give Me a drink."
For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food. Therefore the Samaritan woman *said to Him, "How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?" (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.) Jesus answered and said to her, "If you knew the gift of God, and who it is who says to you, 'Give Me a drink,' you would have asked Him, and He would have given you living water."

She *said to Him, "Sir, You have nothing to draw with and the well is deep; where then do You get that living water? "You are not greater than our father Jacob, are You, who gave us the well, and drank of it himself and his sons and his cattle?" Jesus answered and said to her, "Everyone who drinks of this water will thirst again;
but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life."

The woman *said to Him, "Sir, give me this water, so I will not be thirsty nor come all the way here to draw."

He *said to her, "Go, call your husband and come here." The woman answered and said, "I have no husband." Jesus *said to her, "You have correctly said, 'I have no husband'; for you have had five husbands, and the one whom you now have is not your husband; this you have said truly."

The woman *said to Him, "Sir, I perceive that You are a prophet. "Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you people say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship."

Jesus *said to her, "Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you worship the Father. "You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. "But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. "God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."

The woman *said to Him, "I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us." Jesus *said to her, "I who speak to you am He."

At this point His disciples came, and they were amazed that He had been speaking with a woman, yet no one said, "What do You seek?" or, "Why do You speak with her?"

So the woman left her waterpot, and went into the city and *said to the men, "Come, see a man who told me all the things that I have done; this is not the Christ, is it?"

They went out of the city, and were coming to Him.
John 4:4-30

Seeking satisfaction in Him....

Friday, July 17, 2009

Life around here

July 17!!! Oh my! How exactly did that happen? The last few weeks have been full here. As I gathered pictures for this post, I am reminded of God's goodness and faithfulness in my life.

Here's a whirlwind review for you!

At the end of June, our oldest son Nate was able to come home from Ft. Drum, NY where he is stationed with the Army for a 9 day visit!

I think one of the best things about large families is the awesome group hugs!

While Nate was here, we were able to celebrate his 19th birthday. It was an early celebration, as he won't be home at the end of July, so we took the opportunity to rejoice with him~ plus we all love to have an excuse to have Black Forest Cheesecake! Yummm! I'll post the recipe here one of these days.

I had fun decorating for the Fourth of July, using some huge buntings that I found for super-cheap on Amazon. Don't they look classic on our old farmhouse porch?

Do you see the chalkboard to the left of our front door? This was so fun to make. I discovered chalkboard paint recently... and, even cooler, chalkboard markers! They come in the most awesome vibrant colors, and best of all, they're not chalk! Anyone else not like the feel of chalk? (Michaels carries these. I used my Jo-Ann's coupons to purchase them at 40%
off) Click here to go to Amazon and see what they look like. The sets I purchased were smaller and significantly cheaper, but the same brand of markers.

Here's a close-up of my (decidely non-professional) 4th of July welcome message that I created. It's really fun to change the message when I am anticipating guests or a family birthday or even for a new season or holiday!

Here's a menu chalkboard that I painted on the wall in our kitchen. It's pretty fun as well, and has the added benefit of keeping me accountable at pre-planning my menus!

After some yummy BBQ'd chicken, we had traditional s'mores made over the grill burner (too hot for a bonfire)...

and went to watch fireworks that night.

The next week when it heated up, Tom had the fabulous idea of creating our own water slide! All it took was two tarps and a sprinkler mounted on a post. The children had so much fun~ I wish I had a way to take video of them so you could see! They really went fast!

In addition, for the past two weeks I have been learning so much working my way through Jessica Sprague's free photo editing class.

Here's a photo that I started with of Nate playing guitar... one of the things I really miss hearing now that he is gone in NY.

I transformed the original photo to this:

Here's one of Tim that I had fun with as well:

Sprinkled liberally through the past weeks has been some great gardening and enjoying flowers, herbs and produce (sharing with the bumblebees!)

Tim helping me cut some flowers~ we love having cut flowers in the house...

Sunflowers are so happy, don't you think?

Had a blast putting the cool scruffy edge on this pic...

Plus we have done some fun creating... Here's Abbie making some awesome cloth napkins. I really like using cloth napkins at meals~ so elegant, even when the meal is somewhat plain!

We've had fun creating some cards as well!

Praying that you are having a full and blessed summer as we are.