Sunday, September 27, 2009
Friday, September 25, 2009
She led me to: Lycoris Radiata, more commonly known as a Hurricane Lily, Red Spider Lily, or (my favorite) Resurrection Lily!!
It’s origin is China and Japan.
It is a bulb plant so God brought me this flower because He loves me!! I doubt a bird would have “deposited” a bulb!!
I bet I haven’t seen it before because the conditions have not been right for it to pop up! It is a September bloomer with 60 to 70 temps and plenty of water. Since I have moved here we have been in draught every year around this time with very high temperatures.
What is amazing is it is related to a pink flower that I have admired in my neighbor’s pastor. I keep meaning to go over and get some from the property but forget every year! So I thought it was neat that the Lord brought me its relative so now I can have both the red and the pink!! God is so good!!
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
My neighbor is going on a business trip for a spell and asked if I would be willing to take her perishables so that she wouldn't have to throw them out since they were not "freezable". She had cabbage, many different varieties of squash, and a bulk bag of peeled baby carrots.
I told her that she could definitely freeze them if she cooked them a little first. She and I had a previous discussion how Fall was our favorite time of year and that we just love all the stews and soups to make on a chilly day.
When I told her what she could do her reply was, "Well, the problem is I'm running out of time." I actually grieved for her at that moment. You see, her family is quite financially stable and successful. I so desperately try not to covet her life and her beatiful house. I'm sure she has no problem spending a mere $50 for decorations to spruce up her porch in one store visit. That would take me several months to squeeze from our tight budget to acquire.
The Holy Spirit revealed to me at that moment that I had something just as valuable as money. I have time...and plenty of it.
Our neighbors have blessed us so much over the years. They once gave us a whole deer to process and keep. They constantly bless the kids with gifts from her consignment store and always have fresh produce from their garden of the items that I do not grow in mine to bless us with.
I have never felt the need to pay them back. God doesn't keep tallies. He isn't keeping score. (This is where the disclaimer comes in!!). But, I knew that I had an opportunity to bless them (not bless them back...just bless them).
I am currently steaming all the veggies she gave me and will give her half of them back all bagged and ready for her freezer in portions for her to use in her soups and stews. She also gave me overripe bananas that she was going to make banana bread with so I will do that for her as well.
I can't wait to be able to bless her! Isn't giving fun???
So don't under-estimate the value of your gifts and talents. No matter how insignificant or small your generosity seems to you it can be a HUGE blessing to the one you are serving.
Proverbs 27:23 "Know well the face of your flocks; and pay attention to your herds."
My children show me almost everyday how I need to slow down and take notice.
The kids discovered this little beauty on a tree in the front of the property. She was all moist and waiting to dry before taking flight. Personally I wanted to squash her like a...well...you know...but for the sake of the children and the fact that it hadn't partaken in wrong doings (yet!) of my foilage I showed mercy and spared her!
A few days later my kids noticed this flower growing under a small tree in my "garden" that I have not worked on yet. Since it is under a tree where many birds like to roost I am going to assume one of them "deposited" this seed while visiting. Can someone tell me what it is? I don't recognize this beauty. It is watermelon in color, about 3-4 inches in span and about 18-24 inches high.
I really like this flower and will collect its seeds for hopefully a few of these beauties next year.
Proverbs 27:23 "Know well the face of your flocks; and pay attention to your herds."
Sunday, August 30, 2009
I still want to get a plant for the left hand corner. I found the container for it. I just need to paint it white and get a plant (someday). I also need pillows for the loveseat and cushions for the chairs. Little by little it is getting done.
I love sitting here now. I do a lot of my homework here. I talk to God a lot here. It is so peaceful!
Monday, August 24, 2009
For those who enjoy using the Organized Christmas it begins this Sunday, Aug 30th!
I love to use this weekly plan to get my house squeaky clean and to begin baby stepping to prepare for Christmas.
Doing all the planning, purchasing, baking, and cooking little by little is so much more productive for me.
I can get the kids involved, it isn't stressful, and it sure helps on the budget!
If you are looking for a different type of organizing site than getting 50 emails a day then Organized Home might be an option during the rest of the year. Remember: baby steps. In all things moderation! They have great cleaning tips that are more effective than the traditional ways that our mammas taught us (if we were so blessed!).
Thursday, August 13, 2009
Then one day you walk back to your garden, pick a tomatoe and find HIM:
How dare he. Just who does he think he is coming into my garden and chowin down on my mater??!!
We are using My Father's World Countries and Cultures study this year for the younger 4. (So much easier to teach in a group effort!). One of the tasks is to take a nature walk every week. I've been wondering where to do this and when would I find the time to pile into the vehicle and get it done.
Gee...how about walking in the back 2 acres behind my house??!! Duh! I have about 1 acre of nothing but woodline. Talk about not seeing the nose at the end of the face! We have about 1 acre of meadow field in front of the woodline.
The kids are younger and hubby is concerned about them being out there with the snakes so beyond the gate has always been off limits to the little ones with no adult. The off limits made me almost forget I had 2 acres back there!
So we packed up the books and had class in the woodline today! We brought a blanket and some snacks and really enjoyed ourselves. We read and learned about the forest floor. It was so great having a forest floor to use as an example. We heard all sorts of noises. Saw all sorts of bugs. Looked at all sorts of trees. It was so peaceful and so memorable.
We are going to make a seasons book of our own biome this year. We will document our trees and the types of clothing we wear for each season. I'm looking forward to it.
This is one of our very old Native Pecan trees in our woodline. All the green on my property is so beautiful. It shames me to think that I had learned how to not be thankful to God for it all.
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Our dd #7 turned 7 this weekend.
She wanted a cowgirl hat this year and Atwoods was more than happy to ablige with a beautiful pink one on clearance! I love that store! I can get a bag of dog food, a birthday present, dog flea medicine, a good door mat, and candy all in one stop!
A good friend of hers gave her a Webkinz horse for her birthday. This is the first Webkinz any of my kids have ever had! I know...we take a while to catch up!
Dd wanted me to make her cake just like her new doll so here was the attempt:
Between my college, my kids' school, and keeping up with the house I definintely have a full plate!
I look forward to this semester ending then I will definintely go back to part time school for me!
Friday, July 3, 2009
Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Here is some detail of the paper.
Tuesday, June 30, 2009
Well, apparently the children are following suit. They have decided it is time to rearrange their play area outside.
They really are watching us aren't they? I'm so blessed that my little girls are learning to be Proverbs 31 women!
Monday, June 29, 2009
We are rural Okies. Rural Okies don't use their front door...they use the mud room door. Why would I be thinking about the front porch when the only time I'm on it is to sweep it once a (three) months?? Hubby and I used to sit out there all the time. What happened? It wasn't a comfortable place to be anymore when the table got wobbly!
Here is a picture of a front porch from Country Living:
I immediately fell in love with this picture and knew this was my porch. Someone must have sneeked over here while I was at Wal-mart, decorated it, took the picture, and then left with all the stuff! Of course, I forgot to take a picture of the before shot of my porch but I think you can all use your imagination of what "nothing" looks like! Here is a shot of my during:
The lattice was given to me by a very sweet fellow home educator. She just would not take anything for it and told me to use what I would have given her on something else for the project. Thank you...you know who you are!! There is another piece that will go behind the loveseat but we must first construct a bracket so that we don't have to damage any of the vinyl siding.
I purchased the Pier One wicker love seat off Craigslist for $40. It is still in excellent physical condition. Metal frame and still quite sturdy. As you can see it needs a paint job and the rust colored cushion is quite faded to a light pink. The cushion is still in excellent physical condition and is weather resistant. I will try dying it first. If that does not give me an acceptable effect I will re-cover it.
I found plenty of sheer fabric at the Salvation Army for $12.99. You can see it lying on the storage container. It is brand new and I would have paid double or triple for what I purchased so I am pleased overall with the price.
I have a small table like the one in the original picture and picked up some brass pots to spray paint black to hold a citronella candle and a plant.
My patio storage container will be painted white and placed on the other end of the porch. This will hold all the pillows and cushions when not in use.
Now I have more room in my kitchen and can open my bottom cabinets and use the pull out shelf that I paid extra to have but couldn't use! This kitchen wall will be part of the wallpaper project. I'm just doing one wall at a time. I have found that I will get projects done if I do segments instead of trying to get it all done at once. With the 5 kids' needs I get quite a few interruptions and distractions. They are my priority during the day...not the projects. If I do one wall at a time then I only use about two hours of my day, my kitchen isn't a disaster area, and I can still function and return to the rest at a later time if needed. Baby steps.
I am tempted to spray paint the upper shelf rack from the baker's rack and hang it on this wall in a place to my liking where the baker's rack used to be. I still bake and could use the extra drying rack space. I will also be finding an old frame, painting it to my liking and have a nicer border for my VERY highly used calendar.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Last year I just couldn't bring myself to doing all that work and spending all that money for nothing.
This is on the side of our cellar right outstide my back door (which is off the kitchen). This garden is managable and very close by. I'm a lot more faithful to tend to it. I used garden timbers that I already had and leveled the slope from the side of the cellar. All I started with was spinach, lettuce, and tomotoes. I read on a blog that you can replant the bulbs of green onions from the store (leaving about 1 inch of the stalk) and they will continue to grow. Well they have and I have had non-stop green onions all season!
I've actually been spending time house hunting. I have not been too happy with my property since our ice storm two years ago that either killed or severely damaged our trees. The property was always so beautiful. It has been hard to look at sticks with a branch here and there.
After looking and looking I realized no location was good enough. That is when it dawned on me that it wasn't my property I was unhappy with...it was my house. It just doesn't meet our needs. We are a family of 7 built for a family of 4 with only one bathroom.
Why am I house hunting? I HAVE a house...a GREAT house. I needed to adjust my stinking thinking. If I'm not satisfied with my house then MAKE it meet our needs. I decided to start with stuff that wouldn't cost me much that would bring a smile to my face.
I love sitting at my friend's house watching the birds. She has tons! Gee...maybe because she sends them invitations with all her feeders and flowers. I love flowers so why don't I have any??? When I got home I purposed in my heart to start making the outside pretty again. I purchased another hummingbird feeder and some suet feeders.
I also made some bird feeders for free from this site out of water bottles. Then I found a suet cake recipe but didn't like the idea of feeding the birds Crisco so I made my own recipe of 3 parts peanut butter, 3 parts corn meal, 1 part flour, and 2 parts bird seed. I mixed it up, formed cakes and placed in the suet cages.
Tuesday, May 12, 2009
While soaking in the hot tub I was brought a lovely cool raspberry tea drink and some candy. Having a staff of four at my beck and call was quite refreshing. After my very relaxing bath I was brought to the dining area where a fancy meal was awaiting me. Cold spaghetti and an overcooked pork chop. It was divine. For desert I had a phyllo pastry filled with melted mint chips. Yum!
After my meal I was taken to the treatment room where I received a face rub and cucumbers were placed on my eyes all while receiving a foot rub from two staff members. After my face rub I was treated to a facial from the expert esthetician while receiving a complementary magic show.
After the facial I received both a manicure and a pedicure during story and joke telling by more staff. This was all capped off with a massage from four different staff members one by one as their fingers grew numb.
Oh...did I mention that the staff were my 4 little ones ages 4, 6, 8, and 10? Did I mention that this was all their idea and invention?
You see, yesterday my kids asked me when Mother's Day was. I told them, "It was yesterday." They were so disappointed that they missed it and planned this whole thing just for me! I have to admit that I am married to a Warrior not a Prince Charming. That is OK with me. I knew what I was signing up for. My husband didn't coral the kids together to celebrate me. It really doesn't bother me. He celebrates me quite a bit during the year. He doesn't require a special day to remember that I raise, train, and educate his children with no pay check. I cannot count the number of times even on all 8 of my children's or two grandchildren's fingers and toes the times he comes home with a little something just for me. One day it might be a piece of candy, or something he saw in a thrift store, or something he finds that I mentioned that I needed in a flipant comment umpteen months ago. Now THAT's romance to me!!
I was so blessed. I wouldn't have traded it for the real thing!! Why? Because no other person would or could have put so much love into such a blessing!!
Monday, May 4, 2009
I had to get through all the hoopla to reset it! Oh boy! Not good.
I'm sorry that I have let this slip and will try to be better about it!
Wednesday, April 1, 2009
It did make a nice break in the school day. Got to quickly review how hail was made. One daughter had forgotten that it was Spring when this usually happened. She thought it was too warm for ice but then she quickly remembered.
So two days later what does it decide to do? Now THIS is snow. Couldn't believe it. I think we got about 6 to 7 inches...just 2 days after our beautiful Spring Thunderstorm with the hail. (I can say beautiful because I have a carport to protect my vehicles!)
Would you believe the very next day all the snow had melted and was in the 50's like it never happened? The only evidence I have are my pictures....and oh....the mud that keeps strewing into my house every 15 minutes. Gotta love that crazy Oklahoma weather! Will someone PLEASE make up their mind what season it is going to be in April???!!!
Wednesday, March 25, 2009
This is my dd14y's "secret" recipe so I can't tell you exactly what is in it!
She pulls the chicken out to defrost in the refrigerator after breakfast.
After lunch while the chicken is still half frozen she slices them in half horizontally to make them thinner and cook more evenly. She also cuts them in smaller portions for all the little ones.
She then marinates them in orange juice "and other spices". She thickens it with Arrowroot (or cornstarch if you prefer). You know your pallet. Add whatever flavors you like.
Let the chicken defrost/marinate in the refriderator until it is time to cook. Grilled is the yummiest. Baked is great. You can also do this in a skillet if you are in a hurry or don't want to heat up the kitchen.
Serve with flavored rice and sugar snap peas.
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
Are you doing it? I finally signed up on swagbucks. I've earned 10 in just 3 days. What are swagbucks? Swagbucks are points you earn just for doing what you already do: search and shop.
I do a lot of research and I just love looking things up so it only makes sense for me to earn a few things along the way. I am working towards gift cards. I only need 45 swagbucks to earn a $5 amazon gift card. Not bad. Personally, I'm holding out for the Target card!
It doesn't cost a thing. If you would like to sign up or learn more then just click here!
Saturday, March 21, 2009
Friday was a little busy for me. I had dd babysit for me so that I could concentrate on this run. We have a new Target in our area so it had many great deals that were for this store only. Between sales, its mailer coupons, Target website coupons, internet coupons, and manufacturer's coupons from the paper I did done good! I won't go into the details of each individual deal since there were just too many to list and just give you the total savings for each transaction.
The above purchase is good at any Target. When you buy 5 Quaker qualifying products you receive a $5 gift card. These were on sale for $2.50 a piece and I had 5 $1/1 internet coupons. So I spent $7.50 and received a $5 gift card back.
This one took two pictures because the kids forgot to bring in the chip bags from the vehicle! So the above two pictures were both from Transaction #2. Total before coupons was $91.03. After coupons and the $5 gift card from Transaction #1, I paid $28.96. (24 pk of 16.9 oz water was $1...crazy!)
Since my new Target is not a Super Target I then headed over to our Super Target 5 miles down the same road (Health Food store and ALDI were on the way on the same road)
This transaction at Super Target before coupons was $42.10. After coupons I paid $2.55!!!
Now off to Wal-mart for some more deals and for things that I can't get anywhere else.
Altogether I saved $186.30. That means I earned $31.05 an hour for a 6 hour day. (I also went to the library and some price checking at Walgreens) Most people working 40 hours a week on minimum wage take home what I saved so that is how I justify having enough time to do all this.
I clip coupons while I'm sitting there watching a documentary or my favorite show. If I have to wait for someone in the car or at an appointment I file my coupons in my book. I grab moments here and there that would otherwise be wasted.
Yes, it takes some time. But these days I can't afford NOT to have time. If I don't have time to SAVE money because I am too busy SPENDING money (lessons, sports, classes) then I don't have my priorities in order for our household budget.
While I was taking my photos for this blog one of my children asked what I was doing. Another of my daughter's pipes up with, "She's taking pictures for her blog so she can brag to her friends." That comment really hurt my feelings (and I let her know it) because I do not have the intent of bragging. I want to share with all of you who have ears to hear so that I may be encouraging that even in this economy one-income families can still make it.
If I have inspired you and you want to learn what I do then please visit http://www.moneysavingmom.typepad.com/ . This is where I get much of my information. Just read it for a couple of days to follow what she is saying and explore her site as she has many links that will teach you these processes.