Quiet and common notions...shared here...with you! Of life ~ our hearts and our home.

Friday, January 30, 2009

May it never be enough...

This morning I was sitting down with the little ones - playing with this musical toy worm where when you hit the notes located on the worm's body it plays a tune. Well, I was working out the notes to play the song " Jesus loves me" and of course, singing along. Aubrey was thoroughly enjoying the concert when all of a sudden Caleb (in 20 month old fashion) abruptly pulls the toy out of my hands - the music stops and yet I kept singing. And I thought...

"You can take away the instrument, but you can't take away my voice".
Oh, that my heart and lips would continue to praise my maker this day - even if things get taken away from me. "He loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so". And that is what Job was able to say

"The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised."
~Job 1;20b

::: (I think of the song that we sing often at church; "Blessed be your name!")

It's out of his great love for us that we have reason to sing, to praise in the midst of the storm, to glorify Him because that is all he asks of us. Even in the simple, every day.

I keep thinking of a phrase one of our pastors used one time... and he said... "Praise is the passionate voice of a satisfied soul".
May my voice be as passionate as my soul is satisfied and may it never be enough.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

My Prayer



IF...


"...where morning dawns and evening fades - you call forth songs of joy.



because...


You care for the land and water it; you enrich it abundantly"

~Psalm 65:8b - 9a~






then...



"Whom have I in heaven but you?

And earth has nothing I desire besides you.

My flesh and my heart may fail,

but God is the strength of my heart and

my portion forever"

~Psalm 73: 25-26~

Oh Lord, Would you water and nourish my soul this day?
...May there ever be a 'song of joy' on my lips, because you are the desire of my heart, my strength and my portion. Forever. Amen!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

No "knead" to fear...

One of my biggest fears turns out to be (get this) baking my own bread/rolls. Okay, now that I've admitted that, I'm not sure how or when that fear has come to light, other then in several attempts of making my own bread, it has never turned out very nice. I want to blame the yeast...the flour... Ahhh! We'll blame the recipe.

So over the holidays my sister was nominated to bring the dinner rolls. YUMMY!!
She, by the way, is the "bomb-diggity" when it comes to anything in the kitchen. Love you, sis! Well, I asked her for the recipe and I'm so glad I did.


This is, by far one of the easiest recipes I have found to make dinner rolls. So I thought I would share it with you. So delicious too.



~Marion's Dinner Rolls~

(I like the name of the recipe because that was my Grandmother's name- Marion.)

1 T. yeast

2 cups warm water

1 egg

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup oil

1/2 cup sugar

6 1/2 cups bread flour (you may use some whole wheat)

Mix together and knead a few minutes. Let stand in bowl until it rises (about 1 1/2-2 hours). Work down and shape into rolls. Place into buttered pie pans - 6 to a pan. Let rise until double. Bake at 300* for approx. 20 minutes or until a nice golden brown. Butter tops while hot. Place in plastic bags while still warm (this is optional - though it does help to keep the rolls moist).

* This recipe also works to make Cinnamon Rolls. Top with a either a cream cheese or Caramel icing. Very yummy!!

An idea came one night for supper; to make Turkey Salad and to serve it on these dinner rolls along with a leaf of red-leaf lettuce and a slice of cheese. It was so tasty. There is nothing like homemade bread - I know. I have decided that I have NO KNEAD to fear. That it is simply something to keep doing, only to get more efficient with it.

What's on your menu for dinner? Let me know how your rolls turn out.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Updates

  • Shoes


Oh by the way... Aubrey did wear those baby shoes for the dedication. I finished them off with both the bow and the button. I decided if they were for a boy - the button would be nice (at least on this pair of shoes), but since they were for her, and I couldn't decide which I personally liked better... I went with both. I think they really turned out sweet!!

And that whole thing about her sleeping through the night.... ahhh, yeah right. I think after initially posting that piece, that very night she started waking up, at least once, sometimes twice through the night and has every night since. I will confess, there always isn't alot of praying going on - at least there wasn't this past night. Sorry!

  • Car

Oops!, maybe I didn't blog about the car yet... Oh well. I think an update is in order anyway. My husband is the most wonderful man I know. The car we own was mine way before Scott ever came into the picture. And lets just say, I didn't really do my part (as good as I should have) on keeping the car well maintained. Well, he's done a superb job of keeping that little car going strong. As of last Saturday, Scott's excited - REALLY EXCITED - that the car has passed inspection, for this year and that with a bit of general maintence and the fact that we've got 4 brand new tires on, we're ready!! Bring on the snowflakes...he's ready to go "blow through" one of them.

  • North Carolina

We're still praying about this in case you were wondering. THE PACKING HAS BEGUN! We just continue to feel HIS peace about it. "Nibbles" at the job search continues. Scott has been faithfully studying to further his credentials (for the resume) and it amazes us that the Lord has worked out the details for his taking his next exam (first of two) this coming Saturday... instead of pushing it out 3 weeks ahead. Who knows (but only the Lord) as to why this happened but he's ready to take the test and Lord-willing, he'll pass it!! Please, keep us in your prayers.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Baby Dedication!

Yesterday we had the wonderful privilege of having our daughter, Aubrey, dedicated at church. A lot of folks would understand that to mean (what they would know of) as infant baptism. For us at our church we believe that baptism is to be reserved for those who have come to faith in Christ at a time in their lives when they fully understand that they are in need of a life change, where there is repentance sought and a commitment made to Christ and therefore desire to be baptized - that then is what we would then call, Believer's Baptism.

As parents we were charged to:

  • recognize Aubrey as a gift from God and to give heartfelt thanks for God's wonderful blessing.
  • dedicate Aubrey to the Lord who gave her to us, to surrender all worldly claims upon her life in the hope that she will belong wholly to God.
  • pledge as parents, with God's fatherly help to bring her up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord, making every reasonable effort, with patience and love, to build the Word of God, the character of Christ and the joy of the Lord into her life.
  • provide for Aubrey's physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual needs, looking to our own Heavenly Father for wisdom, love and strength, to help in setting a godly example of purity, humility and servant hood.
  • make it our regular prayer that by God's grace Aubrey will come to trust in Jesus Christ alone for the forgiveness of her sins even unto eternal life, and that in this faith Aubrey will follow Jesus as Lord and obey his teachings

A charge given and signed by our Pastors... along with a pink BIBLE inscribed with her name... a certificate of Dedication... and the sheer pleasure of having Grandma and several of her aunts and uncles present for the service.

:::: (I wish I would have a good picture to post of this day and moment... )

It is a humbling charge and one that we don't want to take lightly. A challenge presented for us as parents was this - to be viewed simply as "Stewards" of the gifts (our children, our blessings) that HE gives to us, because that is really, in all honesty, simply what we are. Stewards!

Friday, January 23, 2009

God's Wonders!

Job 37: 1-14
"At this my heart pounds and leaps from it's place.
Listen! Listen to the roar of his voice, to the rumbling that comes from his mouth.
He unleashes his lightning beneath the whole heaven
and sends it to the ends of the earth.
After that comes the sound of his roar;
he thunders with his majestic voice.
When his voice resounds, he holds nothing back.
God's voice thunders in marvelous ways;
he does great things beyond our understanding.
He says to the snow, 'Fall on the earth,' and to the rain shower, 'Be a mighty downpour'.
So that all men he has made may know his work,
he stops every man from his labor.
The animals take cover; they remain in their dens. The tempest comes out
from its chamber, the cold from the driving winds.
The breath of God produces ice,
and the broad waters become frozen
He loads the clouds with moisture; he scatters his lightning through them.
At his direction they swirl around over the face of the whole earth
to do whatever he commands them.
He brings the clouds to punish men, or to water HIS earth and show his love.
Listen to this... Stop and consider God's Wonders!"
::: photo taken, one bitter cold morning, of a window pane off of our back porch.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

It's a cold! So cold...




Well we've been hit by the common cold around here. I wonder if it's because of it being SO COLD? It feels like it's been a colder winter for us here and this ole house is letting us know. We've actually had to close off parts of the house (especially at night, but even during the day) in effort to keep the house warmer and not have the furnace run constantly.

I'm sure we're not the only folks to do so.
It just means extra socks, slippers and sweaters.

Then with the beautiful snow the other day, I just had to take Caleb out in it...
and, of course, after that is when it seems like we've gotten "sicker".
Here are a few pictures of Caleb enjoying a good snow day... He was having so much fun.
At one point he was caught looking up to the sky with his hands raised as though to catch a snowflake or two... (I missed snapping a picture) but I had to think... and ask myself;


"How do you really CATCH a COLD?"

Well, we all sure caught one... And it hasn't been
any fun either. Hopefully we'll all be feeling better soon.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Baby shoes for baby girl!!



The other night I mentioned to Scott that I was planning to pull out my sewing machine... I had a project in mind. He looked at me like I had two heads and said; "Babe, it's 9:00pm. - You gonna do that now??" I said, "Scott, tell me, when else do I have time for me?"... and so the sewing project began.

I found this great tutorial here on how to make these cloth baby shoes. I didn't have all the correct materials so I worked with what I had around the house. I wanted something a bit more on the "dressy" side and not necessarily on the cutesier side. And this is what I came up with. Oh, by the way, I was in bed around 11:30pm- ish.

One question. Should I finish them off with buttons or bows? I think I know what am going to do I just wanted to throw it out there.

Monday, January 19, 2009

"No, I'm the lucky one!"...

"I'm the lucky one.", "No, I'm the lucky one!"...


. .. .. .. .. ... .. .. .. .. ... .. . .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. . .
My husband and I will actually get into an argument over this sometimes as to who of us feels more blessed by the other. You can laugh, but its true. I guess that is a good thing to argue over - not that arguing is a good thing in the first place. But when both of us honestly and sincerely feel that way about each other - then we can only attribute that to the grace of God in our lives.



A lot of folks from our church just came back from a 3-day marriage conference. I'm sorry we couldn't go (for various reasons), but I'm truly excited to hear about it from friends who went and to perhaps get a hold of some "downloads" to hear the messages ourselves.



Don't get me wrong. There is certainly room for growth and improvement in all areas of our marriage. But if there is one thing, that we said from the beginning, and that being, to never take each other for granted...then I hope we are on the right path. That is to always feel blessed by our spouse, and all that for making an honest, good old-fashioned argument.



I remember some advice my Dad once gave. He would say; "IF you never argue, you never get to make up." I guess we all know where that leads...enough said. Thanks Dad!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

W*A*I*T

A dear, dear friend of mine is currently in the midst of a "trial" involving breast cancer. She is the mother of tripulets (8yrs. old now) and her desire to honor the Lord through this is nothing but a beautiful example to these three blessings in her life. She blesses me through her testimony to God's boundless grace in her life.

Yesterday she shared a few feelings of waiting to feel better, waiting for this or that and she also shared a few lyrics to a song that I didn't recognize but that talked about WAITING - and what it means to "worship in the waiting"... and it reminded me of a time in my own life several years ago when I, too, had a long "season of waiting".

During that time for me I remember asking God to give me some practical insight into what it means to WAIT on Him and this is what He gave to me to think about.

W*A*I*T
1. Wrestle Against Impatient Thoughts.
2. Waiting Always Involves Time.
3. Worry Allows Increased Tension.
4. What An Interesting Time!
5 Who Am I Trusting?
6. Whoa! Am I Trusting?
7. Waiting Always Increases Trust.
and my personal favorite...
8. Worship Awhile. Instant Time -well spent.

There are so many verses in scripture that come to mind as I stop to reflect on that -AGAIN!! And I told my friend, "Thank you" for being faithful to share her own (vulnerable) story, in order for me to remember my own. If you think of it, please lift my dear, dear friend (M.) up to the Lord, in prayer. She, her husband and kids need our continued prayers.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

hair cuts and night-time feedings

Hair-cuts!!




This is Caleb's first hair-cut...from a couple of weeks ago.


With Grandma entertaining, Daddy on the camera and one nervous Mamma - trying to save that ONE curl- cutting the hair with a scissors. Ahhh!!


Bring on the clippers!!

This is Caleb's second hair-cut last Saturday evening... He did so great... (no, he didn't do it although the pictures looks like it) and of course we still found that one stray hair in which we had to pull out the scissors again.

It is amazing how much older it makes him look. My little guy - he's getting so big!!!!!!!!!!!!




Night-time feedings...

I got to thinking about how much I am missing the mid -night, early morning feedings for Aubrey. NOW, don't get me wrong I've totally been appreciating the full night of sleep I've been getting here of late but it's those moments of just her and I... though very groggy... and an opportunity to use that time to meet with the Lord in prayer. I would often use that time to think of friends and family (or whatever is going on in our lives as a family) and just pray for them. I guess I could set the alarm...



Tuesday, January 13, 2009

It's all by the grace of God!

Wow! What a day to experience the grace of God. Yesterday was my daughter's 4 month Dr. visit. I was really feeling nervous about the whole thing because I needed to take my hubby to work in order to have the car for the day, that would mean that my 19month old son was going to have to be "along for the ride" because I couldn't find anyone to babysit him. We've done this before but taking two to the Dr's is no small feat. So we leave the house by 7:30am. The appointment is at 10am. Amazingly! All goes really well. There is good report about little Aubrey. She is doing Great!!! Even with her shots. And big brother, Caleb, was as "good as gold", considering.

All I could do, on my way home, was to thank God for answering my prayers and calming my nerves. AND I was thinking to myself, "now WHY didn't I have the Dr. check Caleb over just because of how he's been in the last 24hours?" Because really... the story begins the night before.

It was one LONG night; we hardly got any sleep. Caleb always sleeps through the night and yet Sunday night was completely out of the normal. He would cry out through the night as though he were dreaming, or 'sick' or... we had no idea what was wrong. (He still is learning to talk so he couldn't tell us what was going on). When we would pick him up to comfort him he would relax, fall back asleep but the minute we would put him back in his bed he would start up again. (thankfully, he did not wake up Aubrey and that still amazes me). Even into the morning hours he was restless.

So, long story short... While I was out and around Monday, and all we were doing was riding in the car, we get home he eats his lunch and crashes for a 3 hour nap, I thought nothing of it until after 6pm when I go to change his diaper and notice his little "you know" is all red and swollen - certainly not normal looking. I wondered why he seemed to have trouble voiding...
and so I call Scott into the nursery to take a look and I suggest that we give him a warm bath and perhaps that will help him to relax enough to pee. I was thinking "Does he have a urinary tract infection starting?" - thinking that because of his irritability and fussiness. So, anyway, after the bath... Scott was taking a closer look and called out for a flashlight. OF ALL THINGS, WHY does he need a flashlight?? Only to discover that there is a hair tightly wound around his little "ahem", apparently making it very difficult to void and beyond that it was tightly, embedded into the skin even starting to get a bit infected. AHHHH! By now he was going ballistic as we tried to get in unwound. I thought we were destined for the ER. One big question. How in the world did that happen?

We called my Mom to ask if she could come over to sit with Aubrey until we could figure out what was going to happen. I ended up calling the Pediatrician (where we just were earlier in the day) to ask advice... and the nurse (though very nice) was not really listening to me and I well - I'll just stop there. We decided to try what she said and to "soak him in the tub- AGAIN (because we had to get the hair off), use some triple antibiotic cream and wait until the morning, and call if it got any worse".

We tried again, the hair by now had loosened, which we removed using tweezers - we think it was one of his own from the haircut that he got on Saturday evening. We put on the ointment and whalaa!! He peed - we laughed and cried.
Let me just say... We all slept SOOOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD last night. And I have my little guy back. My kids are all doing well. Ahhh! Such delicate matters to tend too, as parents. It made us feel good that we could actually do something to relieve his discomfort like that and we could really sense his "gratefulness" even coming from an 19month old.

Thank God for his grace and that his mercies are new every morning!! I hope for a better day without incident.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Yummy goodness!





~White Chocolate -Craisen Cookies~
2 1/4 cup flour (may use whole wheat -so yummy!)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 cup (2 sticks) softened butter
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1 pkg. white chocolate chips
1/2 - 1 cup craisens
1 cup chopped nuts (may use either walnuts, pecans or macadamia or a combination of nuts)
Combine dry ingrediants. Beat together butter, sugars, vanilla and eggs 1 at a time beating well after each addition. Gradually add flour mixture. Stir in chips, craisens and nuts. A very stiff batter with all the "yummy goodness" added.
Drop onto ungreased cookies sheets. Bake at 375* for 9-11 minutes.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Joy in the Journey - Part two

Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart...in all your ways acknowledge HIM,

and He shall direct your paths."


These were verses that I read this morning while journaling, and the phrase "He shall direct your paths" struck home for me.

My husband and I (and kids) are considering a very big change this coming year.

This spring actually.

We are looking to move from PA to NC. And so that means change. Change of a job, different church (though from the same family of churches), away from immediate family and close friends, a change from all that is familiar. But we're ready. And it's time to make that change for ourselves. It's interesting to think about going without knowing - all the details.

We simply want to trust HIM!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Joy in the Journey

I am "very new" at this whole blogging thing but have decided to jump on the bandwagon and journal away with the rest of you.
I titled this first post "Joy in the Journey" because I've been thinking about that here of late. With the New Year (of '09) having just begun, there is a lot that our family anticipates taking place in our lives this coming year. We only hope and pray that we will sense his JOY in our lives as we live out the journey that he has set before us.
Two verses in Isaiah 45:2-3 inspire me as I read...
"I will go before you and will level the mountains, I will break down gates of
bronze and cut through bars of iron. I will give you the treasures of darkness,
riches stored in secret places, so that you may know that I am the LORD, the God
of Israel, who summons you by name."
These verses seem to be a bedrock; a comfort knowing that God is faithful to
"go before us" and lead our paths.
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