Friday, December 22, 2017

A Little Organizing in the Computer Room!

I am sure everyone is busy preparing for time with family and maybe no one will even see this post! But yesterday ~ I got the "bug" in me to get some re-arranging and organizing done in our computer room. It is not a well-lit room (I hate using the flash on my camera) so the pictures aren't totally perfect (which is good anyway...because this is the room that the walls need completely redone in! No need to see in detail! haha!)

Below is a built in bookshelf that was here when we moved in. I don't love the wood doesn't even match the trim but it *is* a great place to store books for the children to read throughout the year. My laminator is there too (I love that thing! I want to laminate *everything*!)...

The picture of Ruthie on the wall (below) as well as the star are *not* centered at all...honestly, I just hung them on nails that were already in the wall. We *will* redo this room one day (Lord willing, of course) and all will be nice but for works! Our first focus is to accomplish the things on the list so we are able to foster to adopt! So who knows when this room will get finished ~ and that's okay! :o)

It felt good to go through stuff, get rid of unneeded items and get things clean and organized! I love the feeling after tackling a big project! We moved some bookcases around and organized the books. Don't mind the children's school cupboard in the photo at the top (cupboard is to the far left). It isn't quite as neat as I like it...but I try not to get too worked up about it as long as it isn't crazy! isn't a really *pretty* space (although Madelyn's piano is on the opposite wall and pianos always make things look nice!) but it is super functional for the time being. You can see photos of the piano-side of the room HERE.

Jaxson and I just got back from the store to pick up a few last minute things! What a crazy time it was! Lots of people, long lines and busyness (and it was just at our local grocery store!)....I can't imagine how bigger stores are busy!

It is a nice, slow and relaxed day here today. It's so nice. Xavier did two days of schoolwork yesterday so he could go to work with his dad today (at my dad's shop). Madelyn went to do childcare for a couple hours at the Y this morning and then my mom was picking her up to go decorate cookies. The house is tidy, gifts are wrapped and laundry is laundering! ;o) I've got lunch cooking but need to go finish preparing it!

I hope you all have a lovely week ahead with your loved ones!
Thanks for stopping by!!

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

A Sweet Tradition!

Every deer season I make caramels. The men-folk spend weeks processing the deer (at my in-loves' meat market) while a few of us women (and my children) work at wrapping the orders! It's a super busy season for our family! One year, I decided to make the men a treat. I made caramels. Ever since has become a tradition! If I try *not* to make them (because I always end up eating some which is torturous) the guys are always asking where the caramels are! :)

They are not difficult to make...but you must make sure you have a candy thermometer. You definitely don't want to over cook your caramels! I made two batches this year. The first turned out perfect. This batch I have pictured turned out too hard because my thermometer wasn't giving me the right temperature and I ended up cooking them too long!

If this is a tradition you'd like to try with your family and friends (or just want to make it *once*) can find the recipe HERE! :)

The days have been quite busy around here lately. The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is here. We're still schooling and will just take next week off for a break. I know the children are really looking forward to that! :)

We hope to have a joy-filled Christmas...enjoying time with family. We have many plans that span more than just this coming weekend! Although we don't really *do* Christmas (as I have shared in the past) we still purchase gifts and do all the Christmas traditions with family. (I am not a *total* scrooge....haha!)

It is time to officially get the day started! Breakfast is cooking (by the lovely Madelyn)...we will have prayer/catechism together and I will read aloud to the boys for a bit. Then they will start their school work! I don't know when I will post may not be until after the weekend so I wish you all a beautiful season with your loved ones and most of all may Christ be exalted (not as the baby in a manger only...but as our perfect Redeemer and Savior who lived a sinless life, suffered and died in our place and rose again! Blessed be the Name of the Lord!)

Until next time, Lord willing ~
Katy :o)

Saturday, December 9, 2017

The *Baby* turns 12 and a Huge Update!!

My youngest turned 12 this past week! I'm not sure how we got here so fast....honestly, he seems like he was just in diapers a few years ago! We had a quiet evening at home to celebrate! I made tacos for supper and then Chris's parents and my parents came over afterwards for dessert! :)

 I was going to make him a cake but my mom offered to buy him an ice cream cake to which he heartily agreed! Madelyn and I had gotten him a fun hat at the Dollar Tree too, which he wore! He's such a good sport! :)

We spent the evening visiting and Jaxson did what he does most....draw! He loves to draw. If you check out my instagram you can see a picture of the grinch he drew! :) He and X took some of the cardboard from the box that housed our new couch which I posted about previously and they had fun drawing and coloring...

The days have been super busy lately....just so much going on! My poor husband has a terrible cold and yet he is pushing through! Luckily, the cold hasn't affected his sweet sense of humor!

Before I go....I have an exciting announcement!!

After deer season ends (and the busyness of the meat market with deer processing) comes Christmas....then New Years...and then normally it would be a time of rest for us. We would still have things to do, of course, but it wouldn't be quite so busy....but this year we will be spending time fulfilling a (huge) list of requirements for the newest calling we feel the Lord has placed upon us. We have applied and met with a foster care company....we are hoping to foster to adopt a baby/toddler! There is a list of things that must be done first though....such as a banister on our steps needs built (previous owners had removed it and we never built a new one), clearances need gotten (I have mine but Chris needs his and also we need to get our FBI ones done!), tons of paperwork and so much MORE!!! So, we have a lot to do....but we are looking forward to it! I was worried it was going to be a load on Chris and was not sure if this was a great idea (it all seems so overwhelming!)....but he said we just take one thing at a time and he is excited about this step we are taking! :o) I will be sure to keep you guys updated when I can!

Thanks so much for stopping by! I hope you are well!! I always appreciate your comments and emails! Have a great week ahead friends!


Saturday, December 2, 2017

A New Couch!

I am very excited to show you the new couch we got! Our last couch (more of a love seat) we had for a *long* time. It was well-loved. It was big and cushion-y (yes, I just made that noun into an adjective! haha!). It needed replaced so I have been on the lookout for something inexpensive but suited to our needs (don't worry...I had Chris's blessing with this!). I wanted something that wasn't huge....but allowed for more seating. I found this couch it at a *great* sale price AND ordered through ebates first (do you use ebates? This isn't an advertisement post...but if you just go through their get money back when you order online! It's great!! I got almost $20 back on this couch! If you want to sign up (it's free) please use my link: HERE!)

The top picture was taken with our regular lighting that we use. I took the bottom pics with the overhead light on so you could see things better! :) One thing I love about this couch is that it is small (takes up less space than our old couch) but it has more room to sit!! Another thing is that if the cushions ever tear or something, they can be re-covered! I'm really hoping it all holds up well though!

The children were sad about changing the couch! They were so used to our other one and didn't like the idea of changing it...however, Madelyn and I put this one together last evening and once everyone tried it ~ they loved it! There's more room to stretch out if they want to lay down...and it's just going to work well for us! :)

Mickey seems to like the new couch too! :)

Last night kicked off our town's Victorian Christmas. There are different things going on for it....people dressed up in Victorian clothes doing "living windows" where they act out scenes in store front windows around town, stores are open around town with sales, music, food....etc!

There is something called "Christmas Tree Lane" in our courthouse. My dad's business sponsored a tree that my aunt, Madelyn and Jaxson put up and decorated. You can (sort-of) see it below in the top window on the left. It is's a silver tree with blue lights! I had friends tell me it was their favorite tree up there...

Things have been busy around here with deer season. Chris, Madelyn and X are out hunting right now then will be busy skinning deer down at the shop. Jaxson had a sleepover at my parents' house to help decorate their tree. I just got home from teaching spin class at the Y. I'm showered and need to get something to eat as my stomach is growling at me! I have bills to pay and housework to tend to! I was just really excited to share our new couch. Little things make me smile!!! :o)

I hope your weekend is full of joy and cheer!
Thanks for visiting me here! :)

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

"A thankful heart... one of the primary identifying characteristics of a believer. It stands in stark contrast to pride, selfishness, and worry. And it helps fortify the believer's trust in the Lord and reliance on His provision, even in the toughest times. No matter how choppy the seas become, a believer's heart is buoyed by constant praise and gratefulness to the Lord."

~John MacArthur

Good morning! It's an absolutely beautiful day here in Pennsylvania! The skies are blue and the sun is shining! It's chilly outside but not bitterly just a wonderful day! We are back to our schooling routine after 5 days off for Thanksgiving (although two of those days were the was still a nice break)! It's nice to get back to our routine though!

We had an enjoyable time of Thanksgiving (first a couple Sundays ago with Chris's family and then on Thanksgiving Day with my family). It was so nice to get together with loved ones and talk, laugh and eat.

Speaking of eating...that pie pictured at the top of this post...? It wasn't made by me! Jaxson (my soon-to-be 12 year old) made it! He loves to make pie and I think he did a great job!! I made mashed potatoes and baked corn for the meal with my family. It's incredible....everyone makes a lot of food to feed a lot of mouths and somehow we still end up with an enormous amount of leftovers! It makes me cringe though to think of this amount of food we had available to us and yet there are people across the world who don't. We should never ever cease thanking God for His love, care and provisions for us as well as continually reaching out to serve others (Chris's parents spend their Thanksgiving cooking at their church to serve others who don't have a place to go! Isn't that wonderful!?)

The Friday night after Thanksgiving is "Light Up Night" in our town. There is always a parade. My dad drives one of his trucks through and we decorate it beforehand. You may remember me blogging about this in years past. This year was much the same. Although the lights make the pictures look warm and cozy...don't be fooled! It was *cold*!!! I had fingerless gloves on (as I can't take pictures without my fingers being free) and I was in pain!!! I guess next year I'll plan on wearing full gloves and just taking them off when I need to take pictures! The picture above is me with my cousin Mariah. Below are pictures of my dad's truck (there were a lot of people at the parade so I took the pictures before they actually got near the crowds so I could actually *see* the truck! haha!)...

Here is my *one* Christmas decoration....haha. I love wreaths of all kinds. This one needs lowered a bit more to be centered more in the window of the door....I just haven't done that yet...

Each night, I am grateful to get to climb into my bed (which was given to us by my mom's parents! I so love this bed!) and spend some time in God's Word. Daily Bible reading is a *must* for me. No matter how late it is...if I haven't spend time in God's Word earlier in the day...I do before bed. (I am not a huge fan of reading in the morning as it makes me tired and struggle to get my day started.)

So that's all for now....I need to get groceries today. I've been scurrying around getting things done around the house this morning. It was nice to get to sit for a few minutes and write out this post. Now that it is officially deer season ~ things will be busy, busy, busy at my in-loves' meat market for the next month! Which is a busy season for my husband (as well as me and the children when we go down to help). Taking some time to sit and just write for a while does this gal good! :)

I hope your days are joy-filled and with continual glory-giving unto our great God! There is no one like our God and He deserves all our praise and worship! :) Thanks so much for taking a bit of time to stop by! Until next time, Lord willing....

In all cheerfulness,

Monday, November 20, 2017

"Home is the true wife's kingdom...

...There, first of all places, she must be strong and beautiful. She may touch life outside in many ways, if she can do it without slighting the duties that are hers within her own doors. But if any calls for her service must be declined, they should not be the duties of her home. These are hers, and no other one’s. Very largely does the wife hold in her hands, as a sacred trust, the happiness and the highest good of the hearts that nestle there. The best husband—the truest, the noblest, the gentlest, the richest-hearted—cannot make his home happy if his wife be not, in every reasonable sense, a helpmate to him.

In the last analysis, home happiness depends on the wife. Her spirit gives the home its atmosphere. Her hands fashion its beauty. Her heart makes its love. And the end is so worthy, so noble, so divine, that no woman who has been called to be a wife, and has listened to the call, should consider any price too great to pay, to be the light, the joy, the blessing, the inspiration of a home."

~ J.R. Miller 

Last evening we held my husband's side of the family's Thanksgiving meal at our home! Everything went splendidly and we all enjoyed our evening! The food and fellowship was great!

I thought it would be fun to share some updated photos from around my home! :)

In the living room (notice Cash is on his dogbed to the left and Mickey is chomping on a bone on the rug!)...

In the dining room (it was raining and snowing outside....quite dreary ~ leaving pictures a bit dark!)...

In the bathroom...

And finally, I am excited to share a coat rack that my husband made for me! It was his idea...not mine and I was thrilled with how it all turned out! He used railroad spikes....using a torch he bent, painted and drilled holes in them. He attached the spikes to a piece of wood that he had torched to make it look more rustic. I just love it!

We hang our coats in the coat closet...this is for guests. When Chris's family all came over last evening for supper they were able to hang up their coats on it! It worked perfectly and made me smile from ear to ear! :o)

It is early morning right now. The house is quiet and it's still dark outside. We have a busy day ahead so I gotta get going! Thanks for visiting and I hope your week ahead is God-glorifying and joy-filled!

Until next time, Lord willing ~

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

"The woman who makes a sweet, beautiful home...

...filling it with love and prayer and purity, is doing something better than anything else her hands could find to do beneath the skies."

~J.R. Miller 
(Author of Homemaking ~ one of my favorite books!)

While the children work on their schooling I stay busy with cleaning, laundry and organizing. This particular day I was cleaning in the kitchen area and moved some things around as well as hung some things up! The Bed and Breakfast sign was a gift from Xavier!

Cleaning behind the stove is *not* fun. It's actually very difficult to reach back in that corner area! If we get to renovate our kitchen one day, I won't have my oven in the corner like this. That back corner is wasted space and as I said before difficult to clean...

This is a room off of the kitchen. It was the laundry room when we moved in many years ago (you can see the plugs and pipes in the left of the photo). Once Chris finished our addition and we had a new laundry room this room became sort of a *pantry* room. I had worked (over years) to get the old wallpaper off (it was stuck directly on the plaster walls and quite difficult to remove. There was still a little bit of paper (the most difficult stuff) to remove that I just left. The room also needed primed and painted. It was just a project I never could tackle 100%. The other day I mentioned how I wanted to get it done (but with the onset of a sinus cold just didn't have the oomph.). I was going to do it Saturday but then thought maybe not. Madelyn kept insisting we should do it....and started peeling the last bits of wallpaper that needed to come off. I figured she would do that and then I would start priming...but to my surprise she said "If I'm taking off this paper ~ I better get to paint!". She *wanted* to paint! So I let her! Jaxson and I helped of course...but Madelyn did most of it! :) It's not all completely finished (as we would have had to move out the fridge and such) but most of it is done. The paint surely brightens up the room...

A family favorite meal is sausage gravy and biscuits. Although these biscuits don't *look* pretty ~ my family said they were probably the best biscuits (taste-wise) that I had ever made!

The sausage gravy is really easy to make! Brown the sausage until it is totally cooked through. Leave the grease in there and mix in a couple tablespoons of flour until all the grease is soaked up. Start pouring in milk gradually. As you stir, it will thicken over time (as it heats up). Add salt and pepper as desired....serve over homemade biscuits! :)

Game night with Madelyn and Jaxson (X didn't want to play)...

These two sillies...

Oh ~ I wanted to share something with you all real quick! It's a warning! Remember how I said I am reading "Call the Midwife" (the memoirs of Jennifer Worth)? Well, it *is* a good book...however, I came to a section that was terribly inappropriate to read (as well as truly unnecessary to even include). If you watched the show you will remember Mary....a young Irish girl who got caught up in prostitution. She was a real person....and Jennifer Worth shares in the book the things Mary saw at the "cafe"...Let's just say the details given made me shudder and were enough to make the book rated "R" (or worse). I was appalled and disappointed as I think you can get a point across about something without giving exact details of things.

I know I would have liked a warning before reading so I wanted to warn you in case you were going to read the book in lieu of my sharing it in a previous post. I had read an amazon review before purchasing it where one lady said it was "too graphic" for her. I assumed she meant about the labor and delivery process which I wasn't concerned about bothering me. I didn't realize it would detail inappropriate behavior. It is bad enough for me....being in my mid-thirties....but how horrible it truly must have been for Mary. She was only a young teenager at the time. She should never have seen that! Reading about it was bad enough....seeing it would have been worse. It does give me a reason though to pray for those who experience things as Mary did. I just truly wish I hadn't read those details. It feels as though it corrupts your mind. So there is my warning. I still recommend the book as the rest is so good it seems...but when you start reading about Mary ~ it would be much better to skip the section about the cafe!

 My boys have been making gnome doors as gifts (to hang on a tree)! They made me one too! I will be sure to share it with you soon! Schooling is in full swing here and I've got things to do as well! Thanks for stopping by! Warm wishes to each of you! :)


Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Wisdom From Elisabeth Elliot

Sometimes the sweet words of a wise, Godly woman can just speak *volumes*! I really enjoy and glean much from books by Elisabeth Elliot! I thought I would share a few quotes from her here. May you find encouragement in them as I did! 

“The world looks for happiness through self-assertion. The Christian knows that joy is found in self-abandonment. 'If a man will let himself be lost for My sake,' Jesus said, 'he will find his true self.' A Christian woman's true freedom lies on the other side of a very small gate---humble obedience---but that gate leads out into a largeness of life undreamed of by the liberators of the world, to a place where the God-given differentiation between the sexes is not obfuscated but celebrated, where our inequalities are seen as essential to the image of God, for it is in male and female, in male as male and female as female, not as two identical and interchangeable halves, that the image is manifested.” 

“Where does your security lie? Is God your refuge, your hiding place, your stronghold, your shepherd, your counselor, your friend, your redeemer, your saviour, your guide? If He is, you don't need to search any further for security.” 

“The way you keep your house, the way you organize your time, the care you take in your personal appearance, the things you spend your money on, all speak loudly about what you believe. The beauty of thy peace shines forth in an ordered life. A disordered life speaks loudly of disorder in the soul.” 

I hope you are having a lovely week so far! :) We've been busy ~ but it's a *good* busy! I've been deep cleaning the house as well as trying to tackle some projects that need done around here! :) 
Tomorrow is my mom's birthday and my sister and her children are coming to visit then later that evening Madelyn and I are going to watch some children of friends of ours! 

Thanks so much for dropping by! :) 
Until next time, Lord willing...

Monday, November 6, 2017

A Peek into my Faith Journal

I thought it would be fun to show you some photos of some of the pages of my faith journal...

It's just full of thoughts, quotes and wisdom gleaned from the Bible and books I love!

My drawings were sub-par below...but I was using a pen and not trying to make them perfect. I just wanted a general sketch down to represent the Armor of God...

It has been a *long* day! Supper is in the crock pot (chicken) thankfully! We had our homeschool co-op class day today. It's an enjoyable but *long* day! I came home to do some dusting and organizing of our school stuff. Now I need to prepare to go in to teach an exercise class at the Y tonight (for anyone who wonders ~ that is a volunteer thing I do. I was trained for it but I don't get paid to do it).

We have another busy day tomorrow.....with a gym & swim planned with other homeschooling families at the Y, homeschooling for the kiddos (while I do housework) and the boys have music lessons tomorrow as well. :) Full but joy-filled days are great!

I hope you enjoyed seeing some of the pages of my faith journal. :) Thanks for visiting! I hope you had a lovely Monday (it poured here last night and this morning but thankfully it has cleared up and is nice out...although day is turning to dark quite quickly now!).

Quickly...I wanted to share this *super* sweet youtube channel I found called Sounds like Reign. They have a lot of videos there but started another channel for their vlogs called Tiny Notes from Home. You simply must check them out! You will be blessed! :)