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

Friday, October 31, 2014

{day 31} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Whatever you Please... and GIVEAWAY WINNER, reveal!

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How to wrap up this fun and wonderfully challenging month of blogging all on the same theme?
The photo prompt for today is:
Whatever you Please...

Simple enough... and I could go in many different directions.

Ironically, like a blown away puff to a dandelion.   My thoughts are scattered.  Truth be told - my toddler snatched this very dandelion mere seconds after snapping these photos and it was gone!!

Gone with the wind...and so are my thoughts!  I want to say, though, that I really had a lot of fun with this challenge.  As, I hope you've had just as much enjoyment reading along.  I've heard from many of my readers that you did. The month of October flew by way too fast... albeit, thoroughly enjoyed, yet, I was getting tired. :)  I'm glad I hung in there...and...

Thankfully, my heart is grounded to the word HOME!

All that to say.  Questions.  There have been a few rolling around in my heart and mind and have been recently thrown my way from my nearest and dearest.
Good questions.  Questions like...

What keeps me here?
Why am I a Homemaker?
Who do I please and why?
How do I do it all?  or Not do it all...?
Priorities... what are they?

Ones that reveal truly my heart and where I stand.
I love my home, my family, my role and my calling.
But... from within this series came a revealing that the roots were running way shallower than I ever expected.  What I thought was roots really running deep... really, weren't so much.

All the beautiful sentiments in the world weigh less than a single lovely action.  ~ Proverb

It's time to go love - fully - on my HOME and my loved ones!

The first indication of domestic happiness is the love of one's home.  ~ Frances D. Montlosier




I'm not saying good-bye... that I know of.  Yet!
But, just for a season, I'm going to drift off into the great unknown.  Showing only a bit of myself here and there.
I do have a few plans for an occasional post or two in the month of November.

One of them being a Mugs & Muffins post.
I already have a great Guest Post and Giveaway lined up for that, which I'm very excited about.  I pray that I'll at least have one or two readers remaining... at that point. :)

I so hope you'll check in with me - from time to time. 
 I just simply would appreciate your patience and prayers...
Thank you... oh, so much!

A home is the total contribution of love on the part of each one dwelling within it. 
~ Anne Pannell

And now, for our long-awaited..

::GIVEAWAY ::


And the lovely WINNER is...


Wow.. figuring out who the winner was (by number generator) was almost as big of a challenge as was the month of challenges in and of itself.  Congratulations, Connie!!
I'll be getting this bag out to you - as soon as possible.

I had to run the numbers several times... due to the fact that it kept on landing on someone who said they wanted to pass (this round!) on the giveaway.    Blessings go out to Connie - because I know she really wanted to win this bag!

***

Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Thursday, October 30, 2014

{day 30} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Clothes

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Today and Tomorrow!
The 31 days, 5 minute Free Writes and Photography Challenge are about to come to an end.
Thank you, so much for hanging in here, with me!

Don't forget - The GIVEAWAY that I posted about HERE - will also end tomorrow!  I'm excited to see who the blessed winner will be! ;) There is still time to get in on the action... by reading back through any posts in the 31 days series on HOME you can still add your thoughts and comments.  The more comments you leave, the better chance you'll have at winning!  Personally, I would love to see more names in the lineup.  All comments, in the month of October, will be retrospectively counted.

Today's Photo Challenge prompt is Clothes.

What a great day for this one to come around.  How timely!  It is the season, is it not, where it is time to change the clothes around - out of closets and drawers?   What fits and what doesn't?  Packing it up and handing it off to others or to our local thrift... I'll be honest, this is not my favoritist of home-keeping chores.
But, it is rather necessary.  Particularly, as the seasons change..and as my children grow.
Again, this prompt is quite fitting with my own theme of Home
{Home Quotes and Sentiments}!
Love it!

:: Clothes ::

Wow!  These photos sure do and are keeping it real.  Nothing to hide around here...
We have more than enough... by the looks of things.
It's amazing.
And, it's almost down-right shameful to me.

At this point in time, our three children share a bedroom.
Each dresser drawer is for one child.
The closet is shared by all three and is also a "storage closet"!
Even still...

We really are blessed!

I am beginning to be convinced - LESS IS MORE!!
Would you agree?

One of the things I do find myself doing - while daily hanging or folding clothes is to pray...
I will pray for my kids, each one, as I come across their particular clothes.  It keeps me mindful..
I found it to be a beautiful time...in prayer... throughout my day.

Is it ALWAYS, each and every time?  No...
But, for sure, often enough.

One day I had an epiphany!


If you are still in the process of raising children, be aware that the tiny fingerprints that show up on almost every newly cleaned surface, the toys scattered about the house, the piles and piles of laundry to be tackled will disappear all too soon and that you will—to your surprise—miss them profoundly.  ~ Thomas S. Monson

She is clothed with strength and dignity. She can laugh at the days to come... ~ Proverbs 31:25
***

Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

{day 29} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Moon

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Wherever you are...
Wherever I am...
Whoever is now...
Whoever - back then.
It's all under the same moon.


I talk about this sometimes, with my children.

We like to sing that little ditty -
I see the moon, 
and the moon sees me
The moon sees somebody I'd like to see... 
- especially, my youngest daughter, Jayne!  I mean, one of our most favoritest of things to do is to find the moon, in the night-time skies!!

Well, I was reminding my children the other evening... that the VERY same moon and stars we see now (today!) - is the VERY SAME MOON and STARS that Abraham (in the Bible) saw - you know, back in his day and time.

Their little minds try to wrap around this reality...

Here is a quote I pulled from Ann Voskamp's book:

Every time you feel in God's Creatures something pleasing and attractive, do not let your attention be arrested by them alone, but, by passing them by, transfer your thoughts to God and say:
"Oh my God, if Thy creations are so full of beauty, delight and joy, how infinitely more full of beauty, delight and joy art Thou Thyself, Creator of all!
~ Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain, selected from, One Thousand Gifts


I want my children to know BEST and to joy, MOST, in the Creator of all of earth's beauty!  I want them to notice the simple and beautiful, the majestic and amazing... the awe of creation He has created... but really, ultimately HIM!

He is the LIGHT and in HIM is no darkness!
May our Hearts and HOME be filled with the light of
His LOVE, His PEACE, His Blessings!

***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

{day 28} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Black & White

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Perhaps my favorite photos of all, throughout this whole photo challenge.  These photos are not edited... at least for a "black & white" setting.  They're about as real - in the moment - as you can get.

Jayne and I were out blowing bubbles, one afternoon.
They landed randomly, and I noticed.  So, snapping a few photos, I began laughing out loud at how black and white these photos were, especially when I wasn't even looking for it...nor trying to make them happen.

In trying to think how I could possibly meld these challenges together:
the Photo Challenge...
the 5 Minute Free Write...
And, all on my selected topic of HOME --
all while throwing in a few quotes and sentiments...
I was puzzled.

How was this going to work?  I got to thinking...

Here is what came to mind.

:: go ::
While keeping home particularly as Mothers, as Homemakers, we all have our days; our moments.
Things are coming at us all the time.
We know the right thing to do.
But sometimes we're just empty.
We wish to stay to ourselves and protect; our hearts.  We're tired.

Sometimes we need, though, to reach out and through and be part of the bigger picture, even when we resist with everything in us.

Is this always a black and white thing?  Is it always with clear vision and direction?
No.
This is where I really appreciate the words to this first quote below.
We truly need Grace to meet us first, in order to give and go beyond ourselves...

I'm thankful for many a dear friend who were willing to burst the bubble of my life - in the recent - and in the past...
Just to come alongside.

What an act of kindness!

***
Ministry is giving when you feel like keeping,
Praying for others when you need to be prayed for,
Feeding others when your own soul is hungry,
Living truth before people even when you can't see results.
Ministry is hurting with others when your own hurt can't be spoken,
Keeping your word when it is not convenient,
It is being faithful when your flesh wants to run away. ~ Unknown

How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it. ~ George Alliston

***

Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Monday, October 27, 2014

{day 27} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Morning

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:: Morning ::

Those footprints say a lot.
Morning after morning...
As my son waits for the bus, we take note of these markings
leading out of the house...
of someone diligent.
Determined.
Willing!

Heading off to work every morning...
Providing!
Being intentional..
Going forth ...
Being responsible.

These are the steps of a hard-working man!

Though these are the steps of our next-door neighbor, my brother, his uncle.
The same thoughts are true and can be said of my husband, except that "my daddy, he uses the sidewalk!" :)

The idea of my husband's faithfulness for the sake benefit and provision of and for his family...
speaks volumes.
We as a family remain ever so grateful!!

These are footsteps that are hard to fill, but easy to follow...

Thank God every morning when you get up that you have something to do that day, which must be done, whether you like it or not.
~James Russell Lowell
~~
“The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra.” 
― Jimmy Johnson
~~
The dedicated life is the life worth living.
You must give with your whole heart.
~ Annie Dillard

***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

{day 26} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Listening to...

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Listening to??

You mean...
Listening for -- right??

That is what I would like to twist this word-prompt around to say, today...
The reason... being...is that my hubby has been away all weekend - camping!
He took the two older children with him - as part of the FALL FEST Weekend with Cub Scouts!
((Aubrey, our daughter! was quite privileged, in the tagging along department, to say the least!))

I'm listening for their return and when it does... I'm sure we'll be listening to "lots of stories" and tale upon tales will be exchanged of the weekend happenings...
as Jayne and I have had a few of our own. :)

Their return, later this afternoon or evening, should look something like this...


Granted, these photos were all taken last weekend - as he had been away, camping then, too!  AND... well...even the weekend, before that!!

WELCOME HOME - MY LOVE!!

And then... I can't wait to sing and say - Happy Birthday to my Mr. Handsome!
Scott's Birthday is actually, today!!

Only to follow that up with our snuggling up close, my head on his chest - listening to him breathe; So sweet!   His heart beating steady with mine as we fall off asleep in each others arms!

Oh, so much to listen for...
So much to listen to!
Hopefully, our crazy will calm down -- for awhile -- here shortly!!  And, we can just be...
a family... at home!
Welcome HOME - to my two little Campers!!

{{BIG HUGS}} all around!
~~
Don't let yourself get so busy that you miss those little but important extras in life --
the beauty of a day...
the smile of a friend...
the serenity of a quiet
moment alone.  ~ Unknown
~~
Let your boat of life be light,
packed with only what you need
a homely home and simple pleasures, 
one or two friends worth the name,
someone to love and someone to love you...
enough to eat and enough to wear.
~ Jerome K. Jerome
***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

{day 25} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Shadow

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:: Shadow ::

Day after day...
it continues.
What can feel like the-follow-around, tag-at-your-heels, ordinary, mundane, routine...
which it may be...
Is really meant to be monumental, radical and overt.

Housework!!

The shadows that fall at the end of the day are there to serve as a reminder...
it matters.  They matter.
What leaves an impression..
is meant to be seen.
Lived.
and
Loved.

As expressions...

Intentional.
Impressionable.
Invincible.

Don't give up!
Don't waver!
Don't despair.

The shadow that follows you down the hall may be the very essence of your pride and joy.

Even of the next generation.

They're watching.

What is your shadow repeating today?
~~
Here is another random shadow shot taken one morning while waiting for the bus.  Both of the girls had joined my son while waiting and they were doing all sorts of antics - making a shadowy puppet show, etc.!
My youngest daughter had stepped out of the photo... just as it was snapped!  Right as the bus showed up...
Each new day presents a new opportunity to make it right. Each day as you awake step out in front, head towards the sun, keep facing it and the dark shadows shall not cross thy path... ~ Unknown

“Beware lest you lose the substance by grasping at the shadow.”  ~ Aesop
***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!





Friday, October 24, 2014

{day 24} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Dinnertime

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: Dinnertime :

A scene like this, in the kitchen, usually gets my clan's attention.  They're all right there - wanting to see why all the steam...??  OF COURSE this comes with words of caution and concern that they'll get too close...

But, I suppose it is soon time for them to learn ALL the ins and outs of kitchen duty and what to make for dinner and how it exactly gets handled.... right?  Perhaps, I'm the one who is way behind in this department... but confidence does grow with aptitude and fortitude, both for me and my kids.  I can hardly believe my babies are growing up to be so competent.  Oh.. it's so scary!

My 7 year old has been thrilled that he's now dubbed the official "ToastMaster!" and just this morning - he was quite interested in the makings of microwaved oatmeal - and so of course, he got the 411 - and he promptly ate that whole bowl right up.  Happy as a clam; he headed out the door for school this morning!!  I think it was more that he was pleased as punch over the fact that Mama left him be in charge for a moment...

This is what I'm working on.

I'll say: If you're willing to ask questions...and WAIT... for my words (of direction!) then you are ready for "more and more" of the ropes...

I recently came across this cute cooking poem  that I want to share with you... I found it in one of my cookbooks.

((talking to youngsters - in the kitchen))

When you're cooking in the kitchen, 
You're learning all the while --
To pour and measure, mix and stir
And sift flour into a pile.

Scrub your hands before you start
Then gather up the gear --
Like pots'n pans and measuring cups
That you use throughout the year.

Go over the recipe, step-by-step, 
So you'll know just what to do.
By carefully following the directions, 
It won't be hard for you.

Have a hot pad handy
And an adult standing by --
So you won't hurt yourself
When using the stove or baking a pie.

Besides the fun and learning, 
There's always cleaning up to do, 
And even though it's quite a chore, 
It's part of cooking too.

But after all the work is done, 
It will soon be time for dinner.
And when someone asks for seconds,
You'll know you've cooked a winner!

~ Selected
  Build houses and settle down; plant gardens and eat what they produce. ~ Jeremiah 29:5

Eating is the ritual of communion; over a lifetime, it gives us opportunities for a continual flow of creativity, and for unique personal expression -- a chance to delight and nourish the spirit as well as strengthen the body.  ~ Alexandria Stoddard
***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!


Thursday, October 23, 2014

{day 23} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: The View from Here...

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:: the View from Here ::

I've often wondered what others see when they look across the way and view our place...
I have so many photos of "out there and beyond" - but not too many from the opposite direction.

While the other two were in school today, my youngest daughter and I decided to drive into the neighboring community and take a little stroll. You see, there is this walking path - which we found - that winds around in and through the neighborhood.  We know... because we'll often see folks out for a walk or riding their bikes, etc. and so we thought we'd go and check it out.

We found a bit of a break in the finicky weather of wind and sprinkles... and headed out to see what we could see.

It was fun!
Her and I.

She didn't want to go home.  But, I did!  Not that I wasn't having a good time with my daughter - it was just that "home was calling"...

It was a bit surprising at how well we could see into our yard and it makes me wonder how does "our noise" travel across the way??  I mean.. if we hear them.. they're sure to hear us?!?!?! Right?  Oh boy...something to think about... for sure!  :)

It just didn't feel right... to be on this side of the fence.

If you know what I mean?


Home ~ a place that our feet may leave, 
but our hearts, never. ~ anonymous

Ah!  There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.  
~ Jane Austin
***

Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

{day 22} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: A Favorite Place

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A smile is a light in the window of your face 
to show your heart is at home.  ~ Anonymous



:: A Favorite Place ::

I know I've talked about this before... 
But, I'm a firm believer that the useful and functional kitchen of any house is the heart of that home!

It's my favorite place! 

As you walk through our front door... you step right into this very room.
I should think about it more often that this is the most vulnerable part of our home.
It's where we gather.  Where things collect.  Where folks are ushered through and asked to stay. Where activity is abundant...it's always on!!

Food is prepared and shared, here.  The smell of the kitchen matters and so should the floor!  Both are areas considered as efforts to be maintained...

Did I mention effort?  Seriously!

It's a cozy place.  

Comfortable.

Necessary!

Nostalgic...

If a light is on... we're home!

If we're not... there is still a light left on... to welcome us back inside upon our return.

Nostalgia is remembering the pleasure of our old kitchen when we were kids, without remembering how long it took to wash the dishes.
~ Caroline Brownslow

A home is no home unless it contains food and fire for the mind as well as for the body. ~ Margaret Fuller

Two more photos - taken right after lunch, this afternoon... just to say "Someone felt right at home..."

And, to leave you with a smile!!
Shew!! I'm grateful I found her and moved her safely to the living room sofa...

***
Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

{day 21} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Calm

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These photos are from some time ago - and have never been used, per say, in an actual blog post.  I would stumble across them, from time to time, in my files - but they never seemed to be "in season" - that is, until now!

:: Calm ::

Great word prompt.  And yet, I have no REAL semblance of words...
My heart and mind are far from it tonight.
Things are s.l.o.w.l.y. calming - but it's taking it's good ole time.  And, to top it off - I haven't been feeling well, physically today!  At all...
I just would appreciate your "quiet" thoughts and prayers...
Thank you, much.

Instead of quotes...tonight, I found, or heard, rather, two different songs today that have ministered so much to my soul and I just want to share them with you.
Thank you for listening!






Okay... I did find a quote that I can share..

Believe me, unless we have peace. and strive for peace in our home, 
we shall not find it homes of others. 
~ Teresa of Avila
***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.

I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Monday, October 20, 2014

{day 20} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: 4 o'clock!

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:: 4 o'clock ::

I cringed when I read the time- prompt!
Four o'clock - assuming, it's afternoon!!

It's that crazy hour.
The one that seems to be the one that flies by the fastest... and I never can keep up... nor, am I ever ready for it.

Oh but, I've been waiting...
Everyone's home from school, at this hour.  Everybody's hungry.  Supper is only an hour or two away.  Oh, that's right... it's time to start prepping and making something for dinner- if it hasn't been started already by now.

Everybody needs something right NOW... at the same time... as in like, two minutes ago!

There is homework to wrangle through...
Clothes to change out of and in to...
Squabbles to settle...attitudes to adjust.  Mine.
It's a rush...
And I can't rush time, and I can't go back.

Sigh!

Sorry to say, I'm not always on my best behavior - at the Four o'clock hour... and I worry how to make the most of my time, And, just how exactly to make the home-life moments count?  

That's being honest!  And I'm aiming to keep it real.

Yet....

Time waits for no one...it marches on!  And, I stop!

Here is my daily song & prayer ~~

I NEED THEE, Oh I need thee. EVERY HOUR, I need thee... 
Oh, bless me now, my Saviour, I come to thee!!
And, He does,  He comes!

** Yes! for the sake of the photos, today, I moved the hands of time; moving them ahead and turning them back..

I speak it to God:  I don't want more time.  I want just enough time.  
Time to breathe deep and time to see real and time to laugh long, time to give You glory and rest deep and sing joy and just enough time in a day not to feel hounded, pressed, driven or wild to get it all done and yesterday.  ~ Ann Voskamp
~~
I will not just live my life, 
I will not just spend my life, 
I will invest my life.
~ Helen Keller
***


Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.
I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

{day 19} Home Quotes and Sentiments :: Letters

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A lovely Sunday, today!
As well, a loving invitation to go HOME to my Mother's house for Sunday dinner and spend the day with some of my family and friends.
My husband is off on a Weekend Training for Scouts and won't be home till sometime Monday evening.  :(  he's being missed... a lot!

I almost forgot about posting for today, for we were having such a grand time at Grandma's.  However, thankfully, I had remembered my camera... and it was perfect!

So - here we were, late afternoon, on a chilly and beautiful fall day and I got to thinking about what I would do with this prompt: Letters.  Letters???

I went searching...

Look at that!  I found a few out in my Mother's backyard...


And, that is exactly how I feel at my Mother's home!
Welcome(d).

Of course, I took a few other great photos, that I thought I would just share with you tonight.  The late afternoon sun is always perfect to collect a few fun photos.. and I couldn't have been happier with the way they turned out.
Too bad I didn't get any photos of my actual family members...
 The reason: they were too busy having a blast, long enough to stand or sit still - is really the honest truth!!


Later.  As we sat around the evening table - for a typical "mennonite supper"... of popcorn, ice cream and pie (apple and funny cake)... I spotted this sign up above her baywindow.



How true!!

My kids didn't want to leave Grandma's house, tonight!!  That's for sure.

Blessings of Home
The crown of the home is godliness;
The beauty of the home is order; 
The glory of the home is hospitality;
The blessing of the home is contentment.
~Henry Van Dyke



{source}

***

Participating in:  31 days/Five Minute Free Writes/ Photography Challenge.
I'll be daily updating this link, HERE, so that you can keep up with any entries you may have missed!
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