Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Warm Hearts at Home

"We must live for each other. We must gain each other's heart by giving just what we expect to receive...We must deny self and live for one another...Friendships in our own home, to be deep and true and heart-satisfying, must be formed by the patient knitting of soul to soul and the growing of life into life..."
~J.R. Miller, Home-Making p.151

Daily, my family works on building and strengthening friendships and making memories with each other. There are wonderful times of happiness, sharing, joy and giving. But we are terribly imperfect...resulting in times of disagreement, harsh words, misunderstandings and the like. We are each human...battling *self* constantly. Home is the place where we should be working even harder to bless and encourage those around us with kindness and nurturing words. Home should be a place of love and refuge. A safe place for all to find shelter from life's storms.

Loving speech should be the tone for the whole house...starting first with the parents and how they talk with each other and with the children. You will find, children will respond to each other in a way similar to how they see *us* conversing with those we love. Of course, they are naturally prone to be selfish...which can cause quarrels among the children. This is where parents must come in with firm, yet gentle, words to teach. Expect immediate obedience...for it is necessary for children to honor their parents (for wonderful wisdom on this, I encourage you to read The Mother at Home by John S.C. Abbott which you can purchase HERE or read online HERE.).

"The blessed influence of loving speech day after day and month after month is impossible to estimate. It is like the falling of warm spring sunshine and rain on the garden, causing lovely flowers to spring up in every nook and corner, and filling all the air with sweet fragrance. Only beauty and gentleness of character can come from such a home."
~J.R. Miller, Home-Making p.186

Do you eat supper around the table together...or do outside social events make it that you can't? Is your schedule over-loaded, not allowing for the simple (and important) ritual of dining around the table together each evening? Is there anything you can cut back on, to allow at least a few nights of this form of togetherness? You will be so glad you did. I will be reviewing a DVD from Franklin Springs called The Family Meal Table by Nancy Campbell, soon. I look forward to sharing *more* with you on why this tradition is such a benefit to the lives in a family!

"The table should be made the center of the social life of the household. There, all should appear at their best. Gloom should be banished. The conversation should be bright and sparkling."
~J.R. Miller, Home-Making p.187

The value of your home doesn't come from how much it cost or how many improvements you have done to it. It doesn't come from how many costly items you own or the money in your pocketbook. The home value comes from the hearts of the people who live inside. As mothers, our roles in nurturing and caring for those hearts is significant (for our husbands *and* our children...as well as our own!)! This is a difficult task...and I am striving (and oft times, failing), daily. But all we can do is try our best, consistently going back to God for His strength and wisdom...in His Word and through prayer!

I have some photos, here, of some simple moments and places around my home...nothing perfect or "impressive" according to the world's standards...but we *are* a family full of love, working daily to serve each other and live as selflessly as possible (a constant learning process). :)

Chris and Xavier, raking the yard after mowing...

The now-empty chicken coop and run...a soon-to-be home for our littlest chicks (and also, there is my Ruthie, aka: Ruthers)...







Jack-the-cat...always at my side while out and about outdoors...

Many liked the scripture rock my mom had in her garden. I wanted to share the one she had gotten me, years ago!


And, just a few photos from inside...

Jaxson, tuckered out after a long day...

I wanted to share with you also, before I go, about the fawn I mentioned HERE. A friend recently advised me on some of the proper things to do if you ever find a fawn. I found THIS site which has some great wisdom. It's a good thing to take a look over so if you find yourself in a similar situation, you will know the right steps to take!

Today, thankfully, the rain has come and is giving our vegetable garden a good drink! The children have spent time playing Legos and are now watching a movie. I have done some housework and have some dough rising. I have a dentist appointment, later, to see if we can figure out if this mouth pain is from my jaw or my left wisdom teeth (since I already had my right ones out). I am hoping we find some answers...this is just miserable! Thanks, so much for all the prayers!

I also wanted to tell you that I truly enjoy reading your comments and emails. I love when you share snippets about you and your life, memories or anything you want to share. Please never feel that you bother me by what you write....it is wonderful to *meet* you and learn more about friends!

Thank-you for stopping by to visit!
Warmly,
Katy

"We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand... and melting like a snowflake. Let us use it before it is too late."~Marie Beyon Ray

20 comments:

  1. I am sorry that you are still experiencing mouth pain. I pray you find some relief soon!

    I made the mason jar soap dispenser. I posted about it today. Cute and so easy... I'm glad you shared it!

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  2. Hi Katy, I just wanted to thank you for the great post. I really enjoyed it and so agree! Funny, I was just thinking about the idea that perhaps some people don't take time for family dinner. I can hardly imagine it as dinner is our most special time of day.

    You would really like my post today I think..it sort of echoes yours though I didn't intend to. I just got to thinking about how we used to spend evenings really relating and NOT hooked up to electronic media. We had such a fun time over the weekend and I had wanted to share it.

    Glad to see you sharing 'the vision' of taking time for real family time. (So needed these days!)

    xo
    Donna

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  3. You have such a beautiful home because you put so much into it. My heart's desire is for my family to always LOVE being at home (wherever that may be for us!) because they feel safe and cherished.
    I have had the Family Meal Table for a couple of years and I still watch it for inspiration. On my blog, if you click my Meals label you can see how we do it.
    Love your blog, as always!!

    PS. I called my husband to the computer to see your garden and even he was impressed!

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  4. Just the words I needed to read today. Thanks so much! Praying you get relief from the pain you are experiencing. God Bless to you and your family.

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  5. Such beautiful pics! I hope you get some answers at the dentist and hope it won't involve taking out the other wisdoms, but if it does it will be better than the constant pain your in:) I think what you did with the older chickens was a GREAT idea!!!! Have a blessed day!

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  6. Reading your blog I have always felt you have that love in your home! I also enjoy the little snippets of your life you share, the pictures and even the way you write about the dog!:)

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  7. We try to have at least one meal together everyday. My husband has to change work shifts every 7 weeks, so sometimes this means we have our main meal together at lunchtime, but we do it! It is so important and fun!

    We have worked together to build bonds of love and friendship in our family and in our home, and I trust that it is beginning to overflow in our fellowship and hospitality with others.

    Love this post Katy.
    I have the J.R.Miller book and am going to check out the links to the other one you mentioned.

    Blessings!
    Deanna

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  8. Contest......My blog Amish Stories is having its first ever contest this week. The First prize winner will win 2 tickets to tour the farm where the 1985 move "Witness" staring Harrison Ford and Kelly Mcgillis was made in Strasburg,Pa . This farm is now Amish owned, and the family has given permission for folks to tour their farm. This may be the last time anyone will be able to walk and see the same things that Harrison Ford and the other actors saw during the making of "Witness". The Witness tour should last about 2.5 hours. In addition to the Witness farm tour tickets, 1st prize winner will also receive 2 tickets for Jacobs choice. There will also be a 2nd place prize, which will be 2 tickets for the Amish Homestead. Please go to My blog www.AmishStorys.com for contest details, and more information on the prizes. Richard from the Amish settlement of Lebanon county.

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  9. I've just started following your blog...and I was wondering if you have a certain cleaning routine you follow? I hope your mouth pain gets better!! Have a wonderful day!!

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  10. A home is what we make it. I have lived in many homes before the homestead. Not near as nice. But each place I made do with what I had & a thankful heart. All we really need is love for each other. It is such a struggle having all sit to eat together here. My family dose not understand who much this means to me. I have always taken to heart the saying about famlies staying together by doing things together. Your flowers are beautiful. Blessings!
    Lara

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  11. Everything looks so nice around your home Katy! The flowers you planted with your children are so pretty. (: I just like everything about your place - - the wooded area, shaded paths between the buildings, and the room to stretch out. It's obvious the LOVE that grows there! (:
    I like your candle mat. Did you make it?
    Have a nice rest of the week & feel better soon!! (:

    Smiles & well wishes sent your way ~
    Louisville, KY

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  12. Since a few asked questions, but I have no email for, I will answer them here, if that is OK! :)

    No, I have no *official* cleaning routine. I have stuck by a routine before....but find it more pleasant to just write out my "to do" list the night before and check things off as I accomplish them! :)

    And, no, I didnt make the candle mat in the photo...but isn't it beautiful? I was quite-so-lucky to have found it at a summer clearance sale at a place I love (but don't visit often). :)

    thanks, so much, for your kind words everyone..so glad you came by!

    Katy :)

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  13. My mind as well has been on these same things recently. I have been planning on getting The Family Meal Table myself as well as the book Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends.

    Your garden is just beautiful, that rhododendron bush is so big and lush, it's just gorgeous!

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  14. Hi Katy,
    You message today hit right on the money with me. My children all out of school for the season and of course, the arguing and fighting have started. I also have noticed that when "mom" gets flustered...the kids do too. I pray everyday for wisdom to be the best that I can be and that my children see how I have all my imperfections and learn from them. That will make them and our family much stronger in the future.

    I will be praying for your sore mouth also. That is NO FUN!

    Have a good day!

    Nicki in WV

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  15. I want my home to be a peaceful haven for my husband and my children. I long for it. It needs to be a place of beauty and a shelter from the storms of life. Comforting food and lots of laughter and prayers.

    Very good!

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  16. What a lovely post! And what a lovely home! I have enjoyed visiting today! Thanks for your comment and for dropping by the Lazy Bee today! I am going to look up the book you mentioned. It sounds wonderful!

    My Mister and I were talking the other day; we are one of the few couples we know who actually sit down together for dinner and who talk to each other after dinner at night. The best thing we ever did was git rid of the TV!

    Hope your mouth is better soon!

    Take care!

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  17. Thank you Kate for the good advice on cleaning. I've tried so hard to stay on a routine and feel like such a bad mom and wife when I can't keep up with it. I'm going to take your advice and write everything down the night before that needs to be done the next day. Maybe that way i won't feel so overwhelmed either!! Thank you again and God Bless you and your Family!!

    Lisa from ILLINOIS

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  18. Lisa,

    You are absolutely welcome! I am glad it may help! I find checking things off my list each day to be such a satisfying thing to do! :)

    I *do* have a master cleaning list for those times when I want to really get down to the nitty gritty...I keep it in my homekeeping binder. :)

    But, usually, a list of to-dos in my planner is enough for me. Maybe I will do a post about it sometime. :)

    Kindly,
    Katy

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  19. Wonderful post. Whenever my daughter's attitude is off, I always look at myself and it usually his because of me. I am sorry you are in pain. I will be praying. Clarice

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  20. I am praying you found some answers at the dentist today, Katy, mouth pain is no fun at all!
    I love reading your posts they so bring me back to when my children were young and at home, we used to eat dinner together almost every night.( sometimes Steve had to work late)Then there were times we did a picnic dinner on the livingroom floor together, I would make all finger foods, we would put out a quilt in the middle of the livingroom!! The kids loved it!! We also loved to eat outside on our picnic table Steve made for us alot during the summer months.Thanks for the memories my friend!!~hugs~ :0)

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I am always so grateful to read your comments! I thank you for the time you took to visit and share your thoughts with me. :o)
May you enter as a stranger and leave as a friend!
Warmly, Katy