Saturday, May 20, 2017

Simple Beauty: Flowers

The children and I went to our favorite local greenhouse this past week and got many flowers to plant around the house! The children had gotten me a gift certificate to that greenhouse for Mother's Day so I put that toward the cost! We all *love* that place! :) Pictured above you can see where we started planting in our raised beds. Not much to really *see* yet....but there are things growing there!

Along the side of the garage...

Always loving my hardy hosta!

This hanging basket was won by Madelyn at a Mother's Day lunch at our church...and she gave it to me! :o)

The basket in my log planter (I know it looks lonely...I need to get more to fill that up ~ but they can just be so expensive!) was won at our church's Mother's Day meal by a friend of mine who walked over and gave it to ME! I was so surprised! She said she knows how much I love flowers and didn't think she could keep it alive! Yay!!!

For anyone who is new to my blog....the front of my house needs repainted (actually it needs made into a real, open porch....but we can only do one project at a time and it is not the most important! haha!) so it is not the loveliest of house fronts...but I try my best to make it as pretty and lovely as I can!

To spruce the porch up...I plant flowers....lots of beautiful flowers!

The pictures don't do it truly looks lovely in real life...

These are some I had left over...but not to worry....I found containers and they are now planted as well!!!

My silly Jaxson....

The hosta around my lamp post seems to have caught a bug of some looks sick and dying..? I am really not sure what is going on with it, unfortunately...

My tree I planted a year or two ago....I can't wait until it's grown!!!!

Our home from a distance....a constant work in progress. We still need to side the dormers and figure out what we are doing with the front...but it's home and even if no other work gets done to it, we are grateful for it! Lots of joy and love fill these walls and we are thankful the Lord has given us a house to make a home! We've been here for over 16 years...and things are happening slowly but surely! :)

I gotta run ...I need to get ready for spin this morning! I just wanted to pop on and share these photos quickly! It's been a busy but enjoyable week here! I hope yours has been great!!

Until next time, Lord willing....
Katy :o)

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Making Marriage Last

I have been asked what is the key to making a marriage last? I don't have all the answers...but I have been married for almost 17 years and have seen how the Lord has admonished me and grew my husband and I closer and closer over the years. We have had ups and downs through the earlier years...but oh, how the Lord has worked in us! Marriage can truly be a *beautiful* thing!!

 First and foremost it is vital to have a relationship built upon the rock of Christ. We should seek to glorify the Lord in *all* we do.,, being selfless and growing in holiness constantly. We, as women, cannot control our husbands. Even if your husband isn't glorifying the must. Do the right thing even if he doesn't and *pray* for your husband constantly! The Lord is faithful and hears your prayers! Of course, having a Godly husband is ideal...but sometimes that isn't the case (sometimes two unbelievers wed and then the wife is saved...but her husband is not etc.)

Our job is to be "submissive in all things". read that correctly. Submission in all things (unless it goes directly against the Word of God or in cases of help from your church or family!).

 Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife even as Christ is the head of the church, His body, and is Himself its Savior.  Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit in everything to their husbands.
~Ephesians 5:22-24

Submission isn't always easy (especially for those of us who like to control things)...but quite necessary for a happy, thriving, Godly marriage! These days, Christian women are often not reminded of this requirement of marriage (and some women try to weasel out of this verse by making a bunch of exceptions to it). This is what the Lord has instructed! If we want a joy-filled, Christ-honoring marriage, we must be obedient! This doesn't mean we hover in a corner and don't speak...timid and scared. This *does* mean that we can usually have input (if you have married a Godly man as I have ~ they will often come to us for our opinion!), however the husband gets the final say. He's the boss. That doesn't make us less important or insignificant. It actually takes the pressure *off* of us! He has to be responsible for all the decisions that affect his family. That's some serious pressure. This is where we come in wives! We are designed to be *helpers*! What a gift to be a helper for our husband. We should strive to be the best helpmeets we can be! What can make his life easier? How can we ease his burdens?

Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 
~Philippians 2:3-4

How can we selflessly serve our husband as Christ did for us?

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.  And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
~Philippians 2:5-8

It can be terribly difficult to watch your husband make a decision you seriously disagree with. But you must be submissive and trust that God is absolutely sovereign. Find your complete rest in Him! Don't go to friends and family and complain about your husband or speak badly about him. Pray about it and seek Godly counsel from an older, wiser woman in your church if you need it. Whatever you do...don't nag!

...a wife's quarreling is a continual dripping of rain.
~Proverbs 19:13b

Some resources I can share with you to encourage (and admonish) you are some great ones that have helped me. I am so very far from perfect but I have seen how being a submissive wife can make my marriage even better than I thought it could be! We don't argue or get angry with each other (as we could from time to time in our earlier years of marriage when I was quite selfish).

First ~ I definitely want to tell you to be in God's Word daily...yes, daily! If you have time to watch a TV show or to talk on the phone (or read my blog)
...then you have time to read Scripture! Read...even just a chapter a day...and get to know the Jesus we love more and more. Learn to live in holiness and a life that glorifies Him! Also...look up verses on husbands and wives and focus on how you are to treat your husband. Find verses on selflessness and servant-hood. Not only will it improve your marriage...but will shine the light of Christ as you selflessly serve others around you! :o)

I also encourage you to read "The Excellent Wife" by Martha Peace and "Created to be His Helpmeet" by Debi Pearl. Pearl's book is a bit is raw and full of hardcore truth....straight forward with no excuses....but it is worth the read. Humble yourself and be open to better yourself in light of God's Truth to be more Christ-like and to honor and serve your husband! "The Excellent Wife" is one of my favorite books...gentle but full of truth. It hands out the truth to women but in an encouraging way rather than the more brutal way Pearl's book does. But I truly believe BOTH books to be edifying and important for women to read (more than once!).

The last resource I want to share is a blog! It used to be Always Learning...but it is now called The Transformed Wife by Lori Alexander. There are great articles at both sites! Read through them from time to time! They are of great encouragement (and full of truth that we women need to hear)! The truth is spoken plainly there...but it is done in love. A women seeking to train up young women and to share God's truth! :)

Here are some posts I have written previously about marriage that you may enjoy (they include links to other books and posts I have found helpful):

The Beauty of a Biblical Marriage
Covenant Keeping
The Wonder of Marriage

If you have some favorite resources to share...please do leave them in the comments!
So glad you were able to stop by today! I hope you visit again soon!

Monday, May 8, 2017

*A New Bookcase*!

My aunt has a small house. She had this fantastic book shelf in there that I always told her (half jokingly) I wanted if she ever decided to get rid of it (never actually expecting her to be done with it). Well, one day ~ she told me she wanted to move it out of her it just took up too much space. She offered it to me and I was (needless to say) *thrilled*!

The pictures don't really do it justice in the living room (it truly looks better in person). I need to hang things on the wall on the left side to balance it all out...but I just am not sure *what* I want to hang there and how I want to group it...yet! :)

I moved the table that used to be on the other side of the couch to this corner...

It looks nice with the soft glow of light in the evenings!

I have not even finished filling up the bookcase yet! It won't take me long I *love* books and have a lot (mostly theology)! I have 5 or 6 book of which is huge...and then I have this new bookcase too! Funny how books can just make you sit back and smile! :o)

Hope you all have a great week! Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, May 5, 2017

~ Spring at Home in PA ~

It is most definitely spring 'round here! We have warm, sunny days as well as cool, rainy days. I am so thankful that I got the mowing done earlier this week as it has been raining (and cold) the past few days (and seems that it will continue on into the weekend!). We tried to tough it out and just dress warmly in the house...but it was just *too* Chris started a fire in the outdoor wood burner!

The pictures above and below are showing the progression of something *quite* exciting! Chris is building me a wrap-around back porch! I am super excited....for numerous reasons! One being it will help keep mud out of the house! I am constantly sweeping, vacuuming, and shaking out rugs in the mudroom. It is exhausting! I think it will be glorious to have a porch (with a roof) with a mat outside to wipe boots (or even leave muddy boots out on the porch!!). We will track so much less into the house! Woohoo!

So the porch will come around the side and then around to the back...

The children have enjoyed getting more time to play outside. We like playing Frisbee...

I have seeds started in my little greenhouse. Some have sprouted....some haven't. I'm not sure yet what we'll get but I have white onions, red onions, broccoli (I think), lettuce, celery, peppers and more planted...

These are marigolds I have growing...

I've loved getting loads of laundry out on the lines to dry!

 My hosta are taking off! I just *love* hosta! It's so hardy and quick growing!

I will be sure to update with photos as the porch progressively gets done!

I also got a fantastic large bookcase given to me the other night! It is from my aunt...after helping my mom get hay for her horses ~ we moved the bookcase from my aunt's house to the flat bed...and drove it here and unloaded it here. It was quite heavy and awkward! I'm glad moving it is *done*! I will be sure to take some photos of my living room because it looks a bit different now! :o)

I hope you have an absolutely wonderful weekend! Thank you for all your thoughtful comments on my last post! I hope you will visit me again soon!


Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Her First Formal

Madelyn attended her very first formal this past Friday evening. It was a formal that our homeschool co-op there were a small close-knit group of children that went...only around 35 or so! They all seemed to have a really nice time! :) 

My mom, my aunt, my sister and her girls, my sister in love and her daughter all came to watch Madelyn get ready! Chris made it home from work quickly as well! Ma and Pa (Chris's parents) were able to make it over right before we had to leave! It was so nice of everyone to make it special!

Our friend came over to do Madelyn's hair! She did such a beautiful job! It took 2 hours!!

We just put some make up on Madelyn's eyes to make them *pop* a little. She has contacts now (well...trial pairs...we are trying to find ones that work well for her). My sister had to do Madelyn's eyeliner...I couldn't get it on right!

I did put eye shadow on her though!

 Doesn't the back of her hair just look lovely!? There were a *lot* of bobby pins in there! ;)

 My goal was a classy look...and I think it was achieved! My mom and sister found the dress, necklace, shoes, earrings and shawl for her!

 Daddy and his girl...

There was even a photographer there taking photos! I can't wait to get the link to them to see! :) Here's one I took as Madelyn and some of her friends posed for a photo...

The photographer told them to look at each other and laugh. They did it perfectly!

They all had such a nice time and I was so confident in the chaperones (as they are Christian couples who I attend church *and* co-op with!)! Madelyn was so tired when she got home but had a great time! It was bittersweet watching my daughter be so grown up! How did this come about? I feel like I was her age just a short time ago! :o)

I am so glad to be able to document these memories here on my blog! Thanks so much for sharing in them with me!

Katy :)