Friday, July 22, 2016

A Little Desk Organization

My desk had become a bit untidy over time. I decided it was a great time to give it a good cleaning.

The binder that you can see sitting on the desktop is my address book. I like to keep it handy so I can refer to it whenever I need to send a card, thank-you note or letter. :)

Inside my desk I reorganized all the pens, pencils, markers and office supplies...

I love opening the drawers and seeing everything "in it's place"! :)

While keeping busy with my housekeeping and organizing ~ I have been burning a Salted Caramel Cupcake candle from Goose Creek Candles. It smells delicious! It really gives that cozy feeling in the living room (and you can also see my planner and case ~ I had been doing a bit of planning in my bullet journal)...

Remember those zucchinis Madelyn grew? So far, she has put one to great use and made zucchini bread...

It is *finally* raining here...and we need it! I am quite grateful! I know lots of areas are in desperate need of rain and I pray it comes to you as well! Droughts are awful!

I have some running to do today as well as some housework ~ so I better get busy! Have a great weekend friends!


Linked up at: Strangers and Pilgrims and Linda's Lunacy: Making a Home

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Blessings of a Simple Home

Madelyn's first zucchini...

Pumpkin scents (and vanilla too) are my favorite and can be enjoyed year-round!

The "old" living room is now turned into a school room/library. My table is set up in front of the windows and it has my large laser printer on it. Definitely not a lovely sight in front of the windows but is efficient! :)

I love this view (below) from my dining room. :) I have meatballs (and sauce) in the crock pot and just got back from a when Chris and Xavier get back from doing hay, we'll be enjoying supper at this table and it won't look so tidy! :) That's okay around the supper table is one of my favorite things!

Madelyn now has two zucchinis ready for use. She was looking up all kinds of recipes for them...

Isn't this old basket so wonderful? I don't think I have shared it before. My aunt gave it to me. It is from my grandpop's grandmother (I think)...I may have it mixed up...but trust me, it is OLD! I *love* it!

Filling up this cupboard with casserole dishes and platters...

So Madelyn's 15th birthday has come and gone (I'm still processing the fact that I am the mama of a FIFTEEN year old!). Those of you who have been following my blog for a while (or even, *gasp* from the beginning of it!), can you believe how the years have passed!?

Today, we were helping my mom prepare for a yard sale (my sister and her girls were there too!) plus, all three children had music lessons this afternoon. Tomorrow evening, I think I will be helping my aunt continue to unpack from her move. (I long to get her things where they all need to be so she can feel *settled*). Mad and Jax have a recital tomorrow afternoon and Thursday, I am meeting with a friend/homeschooling mama whom I am teaming up with to teach a history class (for 1st and 2nd graders) at our co-op this year. And on and on life goes. Of course, in the midst of all that is exercising, cleaning/organizing/housework, and the like (and of course a *nap* when time allows!).

Friends, it is *such* a blessing to keep your home, tend to your husband and children, and have the time to help others (a servant's heart is a beautiful thing and something I strive to have as my Jesus did/does). We do not have a large income, but the Lord has *always* provided for us and we have never been in need. We don't go on vacations, buy expensive vehicles or put things on credit cards. None of those things are wrong...but for us, we spend our money in different ways and don't like being in debt. We have a little left to pay on our Honda Pilot but then we will only have our mortgage as debt.

I try to encourage mamas to stay at home if they can. Often, people get upset with me for saying that...but why wouldn't I urge women to do what is biblical? Children need their mamas to care for them. Men were designed by God to be the providers. If a mama doesn't mean she is a BAD mom...but it isn't what is best for her family (I do understand single mamas don't necessarily have a choice).

If you feel the Lord tugging at your heart about this, I encourage you to read HERE (rather than me basically type out the same thing) and pray. Talk to your husband and get in the Word. There are sooo many things I would love to say but alas, Chris just walked through the door. :) Time to serve my family (supper time)! :)

Sending smiles to you! I hope your week is God-glorifying and truly lovely!


Linked up at: Strangers & Pilgrims & The Whole Hearted Home & Linda's Lunacy: Making a Home

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Auction Finds & *She's 15!*

My brother-in-law and his father are auctioneers. :) Often, one or more of my children and Chris will work at the auctions (as they are typically on Saturdays). Occasionally, they will have sales on other days of the week. There was one yesterday and both Xavier and Jaxson worked at it. Madelyn and I decided to go to it, although we got there halfway through. I have been to many auctions but never officially bought something on my own (Chris has purchased a few things over the years). Well, I found a few things at good prices!

Here are a few of the things I got...

I'm a cast iron junkie! These were all sold together (most of them look brand new). I *love* the square one!

 I got this side table for $6 or $7 and it works perfectly where I pictured it! I have a picture without the flash (as this is what it looks like in real life....but is a little blurry). The picture below it shows it with the flash. I put a crock pie plate on it to hold keys when we come into the house!

(Notice I haven't yet painted the door...nor put on the door knob yet!)

I got this neat printers/stamp box. It has small printing strips in the's missing a couple drawers ~ but that's totally okay with me! I put it in the living room and it works perfectly for holding this lamp!

 I got this rolling pin *which I love*...

I also got an elliptical (that works well!) for $5! I plan on putting it to good use! :) I love when I find some great, useful items at great prices! Don't you?

I walked into the pantry yesterday and found Stella curled up, all content and purring, in this basket on the dry sink! I realized it was definitely a perfect *picture* I hurried off to grab my camera...

My Madelyn turned 15 yesterday. I can hardly believe it! You never realize how fast time flies until you have your own children. You blink and they are grown! My mom always told me how fast time went but I never truly realized how right she was until my children were born! I am so, so thankful for the 15 years the Lord has given me with my daughter and I look forward to many more, Lord willing. 

Madelyn enjoyed some time swimming with some of her girl friends from church yesterday (they had a lot of fun!) and after the auction that afternoon/evening, we (Chris, the children and I) went and got ice cream together. :) She enjoyed her day. 

Tuesday, my sister and her girls (as well as my aunt and my mom) came over for lunch to celebrate Madelyn. Eloise, Dinah and Audra brought her these balloons...

Aunt Nen (my sister) made these healthy cupcakes and brought them! The girls loved bringing the candle to Madelyn and singing to her!

This girl steals her Aunt TiTi's heart...

Her first time playing Legos...

So, this week has been busy and much enjoyed already! Today is cloudy and I'll focus on cleaning inside, reorganizing things and hopefully have time for a nap at some point! X has an appointment this afternoon and then he and Madelyn get to go bowling with friends from church this evening. Since Jaxson is too young to go, Chris plans on taking him fishing (if it doesn't rain). I am sure they will have fun!

Grace and Peace to you, friends. Thank you for visiting me today!

 ...make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
~ 2 Peter 1:5-8

Monday, July 11, 2016

Home: Furniture, Dishes, Books and More!

Whew! Such a busy summer it has been. Trying to reorganize, deep clean, and keep up with *normal* chores can keep a wife on her toes! I need to finish cleaning windows (as I started earlier this morning but stopped to fill a few sticker orders and get them in the mail) and then get outside to mow some before it gets too hot. Quickly, though, I wanted to share some of our home improvements and fun things! :)

Pictured above and below is a fantastic bench I found made of old barn wood beams! It is a beautiful piece and fits perfectly in our mudroom! Chris wanted something to sit on when he puts on his work boots and I was thrilled to find this sturdy bench!

This guy. He helps his uncle at auctions, rakes hay on the tractor and helps put it into the barn, works at my dad's garage and more! Sometimes, he just poops out! Getting him to work as hard at his chores as he does doing "man" work is not easy to do...especially when he comes home exhausted! But it's the summer and he is working so the other children and I just work together to get everything done around here!

A book I have been reading bits and pieces of from time to time...

There's me in all my busy wife and mama back, red faced and probably sweaty too! hehe...

An intense Monopoly game...(as Madelyn reads between her turns....good grief!)...

My aunt gave me this great glass piece. She had it in her home but she moved to a smaller house and didn't have the room for I got it! Yay! Now, we just need to find a place to hang it! :)

Four books in my "To Read Soon" pile (to go along with the hundred other ones I have waiting for me...*shaking my head*)...

Although I *love* candles mostly in the fall and winter, I enjoy them year-round too! Never a bad day to have a candle glowing...

My famous peach-pie maker extraordinaire! Madelyn gets rave reviews on her peach pies and so she makes them whenever we have a get-together than includes *food*.

She uses peaches I had canned a few years back! :)

I am so, so excited to share this with you as well. My aunt (the one I mentioned above) had these fantastic Currier and Ives dishes set. It was from my great grandmother. She wasn't using them (hadn't for years....they just sat all boxed up) and knowing how much I wanted them, offered them to me! Eek! The excitement!! Aren't they beautiful?

*swoon* other news (are you still here? I know this has gotten dreadfully long! Sorry!)...Chris got my washer and dryer moved to the new laundry room and all hooked up! YAY!

Above the washer and dryer, Chris is going to build me a shelf to hold laundry soap etc! (Notice around the windows...we still need to finish the trim).

Chris's brother, knowing we wanted a utility sink for in the new laundry room gave us one he had and didn't need...brand new!!! *Such* a blessing! (That little dress bag holds my clothespins!)...

The *old* laundry room (whose walls are still in need of dire paining and such) has now turned into a bit of a pantry. I have our dry sink in there with goods stored in it...

As well as this *wonderful* shelf (another gift from my aunt)...

So we have been busy moving, rearranging and cleaning! :) I am so grateful for how the Lord provides for us. We don't live fancy...but we do live well. Others who have more money or affluence may not see our abundance...but it's there...not necessarily in a monetary way ~ but the Lord always takes care of us...we have never known true hunger or need. He watches over us...and it makes me praise Him all the more when I stop and think of how I deserve none of it. Nothing in and of myself deserves His provisions. He is so good.

Well, there are clothes to hang out and a lawn to mow...oh yeah, and those windows to finish washing! I'm sure you have things you need to do too! So, thanks for stopping by! I hope your week is productive and joy-filled all to His glory!


Linked up at: Strangers & Pilgrims and The Whole Hearted Home and Linda's Lunacy: Making a Home

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The 4th of July!

Today is actually the 5th of July...but this post is all the happenings of our long weekend! :) First and foremost, I have people ask to see pictures of me in my posts....but truly, I am always the one on the *other* end of the camera! So, since I had a good hair day yesterday, I took a picture to share (It's still so embarrassing to post a "selfie"). It was rainy for the second half of the day and my curls just loved it! They bounced into spirals and stayed that way! :)

Sunday (the 3rd) we went to church and then came home for some lunch and a quick nap. That evening was the big annual picnic at our pastor's home. It is full of a lot of fellowship, food, and fun! One year, I somehow became the designated photographer and it stuck! I took a ton of pictures...but I am just sharing a few of the *further away* ones since not everyone wants their face plastered on the internet! ;)

Children enjoyed taking turns riding on the pastor's tractor train (I wish I would have fit in one of those little cars! I would have loved a ride too!!)...

Isn't that so fun?

Getting ready to pray and eat...

Although we are into July and have had some much warmer days, that evening wasn't bad at all (temperature wise) so I wore a pair of jeans (mostly to protect my legs from bug bites...they like to eat me alive!), a light 3/4 length sleeve shirt and my croc flip-flops (which I wear out until they die....and actually, they broke *at* that picnic!)...

I am not sure if anyone got a head count, but there were a lot of people there....all that we knew! Pretty good for just a small country church! Everyone in attendance was either a member of the church or at least attends Wednesday evening services/bible studies...

These two walked past me while I was chatting with a friend and I had to snap a picture...isn't that just darling?

We ate, visited, laughed, played, and just totally enjoyed the evening all to the glory of God! I am not a huge fan of picnics...but this truly is my favorite one of the whole year! Sooo many of my favorite people all in one place! Can't beat that! :)

Most people stayed until the darkness sets in. Then it's time for fireworks!

All the lights looked so pretty at night...

Many of the teenagers watching the fireworks... (can you tell there were water balloon battles?)...

Yesterday, my sister and her family came to town for the parade! My sweet nieces...

Although Eloise has severe food allergies, the girls have fun picking up the candy. At the end of the parade, they give the bag of it all to another family to enjoy! :) There's Cory and his girls...

Chris's family brings their horse and buggies through the parade every year!

Chris and our brother-in-law (the one who helped us renovate our addition) were the, um, *scoopers* behind the horses (teehee)...

Chris walked over to see Eloise, Dinah and Audra real quick before making his way through the parade (Jaxson is in the can see him just to the left of Chris's head. He's in the teal shirt and top hat)...

There they go!

Madelyn and Xavier rode through the parade on the back of my dad's tiltbed and threw candy (the banner on the side is scripture!). You can also see Audra there pretending to talk on a phone!..

After the parade, after taking care of the horses and all, Chris and the kids went to his parents' pavilion for a picnic while (party-pooper that I am) I came home, had a quick bite to eat and then took a nap. They came home in the later afternoon to rest and have down time and then that evening we went to a pie auction that benefits a local volunteer fire company. Our brother-in-law and his dad are auctioneers and they were the ones doing it. Chris bought a lemon pie (he loves lemon)! :)

So, there you have it! Our fun-filled 4th of July! Of course, it's nothing over-the-top...just small town, country fun. Simple. I like it that way. Plus, I love all the memories....which is why I post about them. I don't want to forget! :)

I hope your weekend was full of enjoyment! :) Thanks for sharing in mine!