Posts from the ‘Family’ Category

To Moms Everywhere

Good Morning and Happy Monday!

I can’t believe I am typing this – we are still not feeling well.  When will this ever end?  Here are our symptoms:  runny eyes and especially nose.  And I mean runny, as in where does it all come from?  At first it was clear, like water, and now it is like paste.  As of this morning, I feel like my nose can’t decide on which version it will run.  Everyday we are waking up with crusty noses and eyes.  We have to use warm wash cloths just so we can see and get a breath of morning air.  Fevers come and go, no apparent pattern here.  So odd.  There is one certainty … though we still have sore throats, they are not on fire anymore.  We can swallow.  I also have a voice again, you can barely hear the strain in it.  Now it’s the coughing; our chests are so unbelievably tight.  The simple act of breathing feels like needle pricks all day long in the chest area; and if you’re unlucky enough to sneeze – let’s just say if you feel a sneeze coming on you immediately brace yourself for the sharpest stabbing pains you’ve ever felt in your chest and you also grab tissues to prepare for gunk to go everywhere.  *sigh*  Coughing, it is at times productive, but mostly just tight, hurts, and a fit seems like it can last for minutes.  I noticed over the weekend how wheezy I sound while breathing, that is when I can breath.  BirderB and Giddyup-G sound the same.  I have paid close attention to B as she is slightly asthmatic.  Though I will say I do believe I am getting better, and that is just a feeling, this is getting old and frustrating.  This ‘bug’ that I am sure is the flu is interrupting my life plans! Then I read about the mystery respiratory virus last evening on The Drudge Report.  It is hitting the Midwest, and Ohio is one of the 10 states mentioned.  Hmm, what could this be I wonder as I open the link.  Oh gracious, sounds a lot like what we have.  Further more, this virus is sending many kids to the ER, especially ones who have asthma.  So far it’s being labeled Human Entrovirus 68.  Alrighty  then.  I am not saying this is what we have, but I am saying we have all the symptoms and it’s been two weeks of this yuck.  FarmerM was not happy with me recently as I changed the sheets on beds, had out the disinfectants wiping down door handles – faucet handles – anything that we have all touched, and I tried to keep stray tissues picked up that don’t always make it into the waste basket.  I’d do all of this in between hours-long stretches of sleep.  FarmerM felt I should have been resting continually – period.  I have been diligent about hand washing too, not just for myself but with the girls as well.  I desperately want us to feel better more than anything and I’d like for life to be back to normal.  If you would like to read more about this virus on ABC, you can do so here.

Though I have cleaned some as I mentioned above, we really haven’t done much around here.  We’re starting to slip a little in our studies, we have been eating cold cereal or oatmeal, and Raman Noodles for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  FarmerM has been playing the roles of businessman breadwinner, nurse, mama, and farmer.  Thank you, Lord, that his back is starting to get better.  We don’t watch television here, but we occasionally watch movies, and that is the highlight of our weekend.

 

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On Friday we watched God’s Not Dead.  This is a movie that came out this past spring and we have been wanting to see it for a long while.  We’d heard excellent reviews of this movie and were excited to finally enjoy it.  I highly encourage families to sit down and watch this together if you haven’t already done so.  I loved the challenge I got from this movie … How Far Would You Go to Defend Your Faith in God?  I feel I go pretty far already, but this movie helped me see where I could do more.  This movie also affirmed my stance that you MUST be in your Bible daily.  God promises us if we seek Him, He will meet us.  If you aren’t seeking Him daily, I would like to ask you why not?  Do you have any friends?  If you never reached out to them with a phone call, face to face meeting, etc., wouldn’t that friendship fall by the wayside?  It wouldn’t be a friendship then.  There isn’t an opportunity to get to know the person, know their heart’s desires.  Not being in your Bible has the same effect with your Creator.  Not being in prayer also has the same effect with Him.  If you feel life is too busy to personally seek Him, or if you put that responsibility on your Pastor alone every Sunday and do nothing Monday through Saturday except maybe meeting with a group to discuss a set-upon Bible topic, then I hope to gently point out to you this is sin, the kind that is keeping you from having a true, personal relationship with Him.  Please don’t let my words fall upon stubborn deaf ears, please take that step toward Him.  He is waiting to have precious time with you daily.  He craves that.  And whether you know this or not, you are designed by Him to crave and need that as well.  None of this is a topic per se in the movie, but this is a conviction I constantly have upon my heart and on my lips to share with others.  A side benefit to being in your Bible also helps you to always be prepared with an answer (as we are instructed to do in the Bible) and it also helps you to know when false scripture is being taught.  In this day and age, I can not encourage one enough to protect themselves in this manner.  There is so much twisting of God’s Holy Word happening, and this is how the enemy is getting to Christians.  Be on guard, be a watcher, be in His word.  Please.  So, God’s Not Dead (amen!!) – make it a point to have a special dinner this weekend and have this movie ready to view with your spouse and/or family.  It’s one worth watching multiple times!!  When I dropped this movie off I was talking about it to the ladies behind the counter and to my surprise a young black man standing behind me spoke up saying how amazing this movie is.  Why was I surprised?  Because this young man looked a lot like a major street thug and not at all like someone who would have seen this movie, let alone enjoy it and would recommend it.  Shame on me for judging a book by it’s cover!  He and I discussed a few scenes and he was really touched by the movie.  So was I.  And I hope you watch to find you are too.

Well, I had to be the one to drop off the movie as we were already over-due and FarmerM had to get our third cutting of hay in, and the hayfield was becoming over-due as well!  The movie was a one night rental, but we just weren’t up to watching one on Friday night.  Us girls were all moaning, coughing, and sleeping a lot still.  So we watched it Saturday and paid the $3 charge.  Since I was the one doing this deed, and praying I wouldn’t run into anyone I knew as I looked like death warmed over, I had a plan to quickly get that movie into the drop-box and run through the video store.  I had an idea to look for another movie that I had been hearing and reading a lot about lately.  I badly wanted to watch a clean, funny, family friendly movie and Mom’s Night Out was on my mind.  Guess what?  It was there!!

 

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I found this movie to be refreshing in that it is absolutely hilarious for everyone, on a scale that competes and exceeds huge Hollywood budget films!  Our whole family was laughing, that deep belly laugh, most of the time!  There is not one single bad word in this movie.  Not one single embarrassing scene to watch with your younger, preteen, or teenage child(ren).  This movie is wholesome and proves that there isn’t one thing wrong with that.  This movies does it!  It exceeds funny and quirky, has amazingly believable characters, and has an engaging storyline.  That storyline is mommy-hood.  I so identified with the theme of this movie.  And afterwards I felt a bit more thankful and appreciative for the role God has put me in.  I also saw FarmerM in the husband’s movie character and am just so grateful for FarmerM’s understanding when I have my own mommy -moments and am ‘stress paralyzed.’  If you have seen this movie, then you understand that last statement; and if you have seen the movie and watched it through the credits (it’s that good folks!  Plus, you’ll miss things if you don’t watch through them), you’ll also know where the title for this post came from!  I have asked to have this movie bought and given to me as a Mother’s Day gift next May!!  Needless to say, I highly recommend this movie too!  Why not make it a double-header next weekend?  Plan something special to eat and invite family and friends to gather round!  I hope that you do!

So, that is what we did this weekend.  We had to pause that second movie a few times because us girls were laughing so hard that we’d go into a coughing fit and not be able to breathe!  LOL!!  I hope you enjoyed my movie reviews and recommendations!

There is one other thing I did over the weekend.  In quiet moments I caught up on blogs.  I have a ‘friend’ that I made in the blogging world.  If we never meet on earth, I know we will in Heaven.  I love Monica’s heart.  I love reading about her life, family, farming, and all.  I have noticed that our minds run along the same lines at times (not sure if this is a good thing for Monica … hahaha!!) and so I wasn’t too surprised to find out that we both read a fellow blogger.  I think she is a follower on this blog and I’m a stalker (sounds about right!!).  Anyway, I say all of this because I don’t remember where I first found the blog I want to tell you about … it could have been Monica’s at My Cup Runneth Over, or perhaps through hers I found The Way Grandma Does It, or was it Strangers and Pilgrims On Earth (this is the blog I stalk; the way g’ma does it is a new blog I’m also now stalking!  I have issues apparently) … either way, I ended up at Always Learning.  Wow!!  Lori’s blog is power-packed with plain truth!  I LOVE, LOVE this blog.  I must have been reading for a half hour or more straight, one post right after another.  I commented on a few.  I have so wanted to have a mentor in my life.  This may not be exactly what I had in mind, but I think God put me in front of Lori’s words for a purpose.  The discussions FarmerM and I have had alone, as well as with the girls since has been heartening and in the right direction.  I see where I have gotten off track.  I have lost joy and sight of His path for my life.  I admit that I find Christians down right scary.  They can be the meanest bunch of hypocrites, to the point that the actual world seems safer.  Through Lori’s blog, as well as the movie God’s Not Dead, I strongly believe God has pointed out to me how I have allowed the enemy to trick me into sincerely believing the path I have been living is Godly and safe.  This path is actually a trap, and one that is NOT God’s plan.  This trap is filled with hurt received from Christians and bitterness that I have allowed to grow for a few years now.  This trap has become my own form of hypocrisy.   I have been mad.  And suspicious.  Not mad at God, not by any means.  I have been mad at and suspicious of Christians.  Um, okay.  Apparently, I don’t read my own advice.  Guess what?  That makes me a hypocrite!  Just like the ones I am mad at and suspicious of.  Then, moving to our farm has been no picnic.  There has been a lot of hard work, financial mistakes, and physical accidents.  There have been health issues.  I feel like I can’t get ahead of anything.  Life is out of control.   No wonder I haven’t liked myself and have been so unhappy for such a long time.  I want to truly find my way back to God and love people again.  As our family discussed over the weekend, we all have the option of choosing to be content as well.  We have a lot to learn about this from Paul in the Bible.  Will you please join me in prayer?  I will do my part.  I will continue to seek Him, I will be in prayer, and I will ask for help.  In the immediate future, I need to apologize to my family.   As well, I sincerely apologize to my readers here and ask for forgiveness, especially if you had this figured out way before I did and you stayed with me.  I am sorry.  I am repenting and I want to change for His honor.

Proclaiming this feels amazing!

I hope to see you on Lori’s blog.  If you want to be challenged, if you desire to live ‘iron sharpens iron’ and not simply have your ears tickled, please meet me over there.  And I do hope you take my advice on the movies, they both are really good!  Also, check out the other blogs I mentioned – they’re worthy of your time.  Most importantly though, or first and foremost I should have written, be in His Word!  🙂

In Him (truly) ~

Homesteader Sandi

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ps – wow.  I am having a hard time constructing a thought and simple sentence.  I have had to edit this post three times already.  I need to go back to bed.  😦

We Are Losing Our Children …

… because parents either unknowingly or in ignorance are giving up their God-given parental rights.

Do you know that in a school district in CA, a school board admitted that once a student crosses over the threshold into the school building a parent has then lost the right to make decisions for and parent their own children?!  This was in the news over a year ago.  Why does this not outrage parents???

This wrong-thinking is happening all over our country, mainly in public schools, but as well in private too.

Do you remember the musical “West-side Story?”  It is about gangs and teenage love.  It is a movie certainly appropriate for 1st graders to watch.  NOT!!!  And yet here in my school district in Troy, Ohio the music teacher thought it was.  The Man and I strongly believed her head needed to be examined and this teacher put on leave.  When we went to the principal of the local elementary school, she seemed unaware that this was happening.  How?  Who is in control of this elementary school?  And then the school board, why wasn’t there any type of disciplinary action given to this teacher, Mrs. Edwards?  To my very core I will stand strong in knowledge that the public schools today do not care.  This failing institution has decided they are the parents of today’s children and see it as their jobs to educate them in every facet.  Without the parents consent.  This not only means the three Rs, but tolerance of everything under the sun except Christianity; hate for our great country via incorrect history that has been re-written to fit the liberal agenda; and especially the acceptance of homosexuality.

I wonder how many readers at times read my words and think my words are simply my opinion … I wonder how many would take the challenge to actually educate themselves and are willing to learn, have wisdom, and then accept the fact that the world is drastically changing, there is an agenda and there is proof – it is not being hidden anymore.  All a person needs to do is listen and pay attention .  My words are true and factual.

More importantly, I wonder if the problem of not being aware is a simple matter that this topic is just too much for their psyche to handle.  It is true I believe ~ at times ignorance is bliss.  But are parents and grandparents willing to sacrifice their children and grandchildren for this bliss?

I beg of you to please find time when you will not be interrupted (especially by a child as anyone with common sense would realize this content is not child-friendly) and read the link I found today as a top news story.  It is about a classroom in California full of 5th graders being shown a horrific documentary on child-human trafficking and sex slavery.  To 5th graders!!!  This topic is one that would be difficult for a student in high-school to wrap their head around, let alone 5th graders.  Why?  Why show this?  Other than to introduce students and use it to  start desensitizing them.  Think I’m nuts?  How do you think child soldiers are treated in Muslim countries?  I had to re-read the article multiple times to make sure I did not see a Mrs. Edwards or Mrs. Lange in there (Kyle Elementary’s music teacher and at-the-time of our experience, principal).  The article is worth the read.  I will not watch the video as I have read enough about this horrible abuse and we give to a cause that helps women and children coming out of this horrific tragedy if they are rescued.

Here is the link: http://www.theblaze.com/stories/child-sex-slavery-documentary-pulled-from-5th-grade-class-after-parent-complains/

Readers, please do not go on about your daily lives in ignorance any longer.  Please, please, please pay attention to what is happening in our country.  Please have the backbone to speak out about it, especially to friends and family who are unaware or living in ignorance and supporting this agenda.  You can start by visiting:

Parental Rights ~  There are two very good articles on the front of the website.  One is about the government invasion of parental rights.  Read it and then pass it on to every parent and grandparent you know of.  I did via email a year ago and never heard anything back.  And this is not the first time I have posted about it on my blog.  A few months ago my husband’s mother and step-father  and I had a brief discussion about this topic.  Small steps.  I will not stop and give up these rights laying down.  I ask you to do the same!  The other is a very important analysis of the CRC.  Please understand this and then contact those in government in your districts and state level.  This is very important to understand and be knowledgeable of.  What is your hobby in life?   Well, treat this topic more important than that if you have children, grandchildren, or friend’s with children and/or grandchildren.  Please.  Then look over the rest of the website.  I know you will find it interesting in articles titled “Does your child belong to the state?”~ “School Tells Mom Her Child’s Lunch Is Unacceptable” ~ “Obese Child Placed In Foster Care.”  This organization not only protects the children, more importantly it protects the family and the parent’s right to parent their children.

Like or not, the fact is the whole Muslim world and Sharia Law very much ties into all of this as well.  There is no such thing as just extreme Muslims, if there were then where are the moderate Muslims opposing the extremist Muslims?  Opinions are not wanted, proof and facts are a must.  Reality can be debated, opinions and utopia are smoke and mirrors.  Get our children thinking Sharia is acceptable and control the future of our once great nation.  Here is another website to review and educate yourself.  It is Jihad Watch and I highly recommend it, just click on the title!

If you have a heart and passion to help women and children rescued from human slave and sex trafficking, you can find out more information on how to help by clicking here.  Made By Survivors is out of Florida and so far I understand the organization to be honest.  I do not facebook nor use other communication technology, but if you do you will see that you can post support and links back to MBS on your communication page.  I became involved about 4 years ago when I learned that because of the proximity of highways I-70 and 75 crossing, there is a lot of trafficking happening in my own region right here in the USA.  How frightening and scary is that?  But once those emotions passed, I became angry and for better or worse, anger motivates me.  Please visit this group.

 

I do understand this is all very hard to swallow and accept.  I am sure my typed words at times sting, but please know it all stems from a frustration of people not doing anything and choosing to be ignorant of the world around them.  In my heart I believe that if I post these facts and links and a reader comes to my blog, they no longer have the excuse to hide their heads in the sand.  Instead they now must choose to educate themselves and do something, or be irresponsible and ignore the needed responsible actions at hand.

Please pray about what you can do.  Simply starting a discourse with another or  in a group will continue the education and may be just the required action to get a ball rolling.  Again, I must ask you to do nothing before you pray first.  Trust Him to lead and guide you, and if you are reading this and do not have a Bible, seek Him out in His inspired written word here – get to know Him as you support the families of this country, the children holding our future and be a part of an amazing group who help to make right a terrible wrong, even if in just small steps.

And stand with me in never giving up on our children.  I pray for this and I hope you do too.

Thank you for reading, caring, and doing something.

Have blessed Monday!

In Him~

Sandi

 

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY!!!

 

To All My Readers Who Are Mother’s,

Today I wish you a very blessed and happy Mother’s Day!

Love, prayers, and ((hugs)) in Him~

Sandi

WHAT ARE WE EATING and FEEDING OUR LOVED ONES THESE DAYS?

Over the last few months we have started making changes in how we live … we are trying to be more intentional about the things we put into and on our bodies.  Now please do not jump to the conclusion that I have fallen off the edge of sanity and suddenly have become a tree-hugger.  No, there is a balance to be had and I will never give up meat … yum!

What I am talking about is all the junk that is found in modern-day food.  The chemicals, preservatives, dyes, all the stuff that God did not place there.  Have you wondered why there are so many serious illnesses as well as children these days with every letter of the alphabet in differing combinations following their name?  Our bodies were designed by a loving Creator to work with other natural creations He made, yet what we have today in the stores pretty much can not even be considered food at this point.  Here is an example:  food bought from any store, high-end or not, with the best looking produce compared to food grown in your own back-yard or local farm stand – why is there such a difference between the two in appearance? Texture?  And more importantly, taste??  How about meats – unless you buy from a market purchasing locally raised meats, have you noticed how meat from the store does not even exist as a meat should … appearance when cutting – it’s like rubber, texture in your mouth, and flavor?  YUCK.  Have you stopped to consider all the hormones and chemicals added to the animal when alive?  I love it (sorry, sarcasm here) when folks say that very young girls starting their menstruation at ages 8 and 9 years of age these days is not at all connected with the practice of injecting ‘stuff’ into the animal to produce more.  More of what?  Fake meat, plumped up?  More milk? More eggs?  What exactly???  I am not impressed nor agree with all the ‘research’ that has been provided to prove their claims of denial, instead I keep in mind who funded said research/proof and then I use a little common sense and connect the dots!  One thing I was blessed with when growing up poor is that I had a dad who at times raised pigs along with the chickens my grandparents had on their property.  Nothing extra was needed to inject into the animals.  Also, my dad always put out the best garden I have ever had the pleasure of tasting!  I once for a time had a step-father who also happened to be a side-butcher.  He raised his own chickens, turkeys, and cows, alongside another large, beautiful garden.  Again, for the animals nothing extra was needed back then to put into them via injections.

My point so far is that today’s culture has gotten so far away from what is good for us all in the name of convenience and bulk.  And sadly my very own family is experiencing consequences because of this harmful lifestyle.   Because of discoveries my husband and I have made recently, our eyes have been opened and we are trying to make big and better/healthier changes/decisions.  Old habits are not only difficult to break, but the choices out there are almost nil to none.  If this is a concern for you and your family too, may I suggest shopping the perimeter and not area of your grocery store?  And this must be noted – just because packaging says all natural or organic, that does not mean you will not find every preservative and dye under the sun in the ingredients, so read the ingredients, every bit of it.  And when you have a moment, do some research and you will realize how these food additives are contributing to a lot of neurological disorders … you then may start to understand why so many children have the various forms of the alphabet following their names today.

I am heartened to find a number of families thinking as I do, let’s make some tough choices and change the way we live.  Let’s grow our own veggies and fruits.  You do not need a large amount of space to do so.  Check out container growing and do not forget to maximize and grow up as well.  How to find good/safe meats?  Check out your local 4H clubs as you will find chickens and cows, as well as pigs to purchase animals raised locally and without all that junk injected into the animal (just be sure to ask this ahead of time of the purchasing agreement).  And a side note, these animals are also raised humanely before hand.  I know I can not prove this, but just from my own childhood experience, I know animals raised well do produce better meat.  JMHO!

I am not stopping with food either.  I have had it with items being sold to us packaged as the best and greatest thing.  Again, do not misunderstand me – I LOVE free markets and 100% support capitalism!!  Capitalists are the epitome of freedom.  I want it all, good and bad, to be on the shelves side by side, and then we as a society have the freedom and responsibility to choose what we purchase.  I do not ever want anyone, especially a socialist, ungodly government telling me what is good for my life and family; and then giving me only that recommendation as the only choice.  Ironic as there is no choice in that at all, is there?  Are you reading this Mr. Barak Hussein/Michelle Obama and Oprah Winfrey?!

So guess what I am discovering?  I have a few friends who have been trying out their own homemade laundry detergent and have had positive results.  I have recipes for a dry and liquid detergent.  I will post those soon after I mix and try both (will need to be after school is finished for the year with us).  And because of a recent personal scare, I am also going to try a recipe for homemade deodorant.  This may be too personal for most, but I guess I do not have much couth so I’ll admit here on my blog that I have not been using deodorant at all lately (yeah, eeeww).  Again, so much research connecting serious illnesses with deodorant, not the least of which is breast cancer for women.  I have a recipe for a solid deodorant from a woman who has been using it for over a year now and highly recommends it.  I will mix my first batch this weekend and will post results, along with another solid and spray recipe from her as well.

If any of you readers have recommendations, I beg of you to please share them here for me and others to try.  Let us all be our brother’s (and sister’s) keeper by sharing knowledge and ideas to get back to the basics of life, and live healthier and better.

One more thing, I know the very foundation of a better and healthier life is to first get back into you Bibles.  Please be sure you are spiritually healthy and well by being in His Word daily.  Live with Him from the inside out!!

Have a blessed day Readers!

In Him ~

Sandi

Roots showing in unexpected surprises …

Do you enjoy surprises?  I very much enjoy giving them, but I don’t enjoy getting them – must be these control issues I have!!

Some surprises are just so exciting I think I’ll burst from not telling, such as planning a special date night with my hubby.  Dear Readers, these are so few and far in between that The Man doesn’t believe me when I tell him I have something up my sleeve.  Speaking or which, I believe it’s due-time for one of these nights …

Some surprises are frightening or sad such as the first time your daughter has a seizure that can not be identified and does not mimic grand mals and is accompanied with absolutely no vitals.  Those 911 calls seem like eternity and the 47 seconds it takes for paramedics to arrive to help try to revive her are the scariest moments a parent (us) may ever live through …

Special moments planned not because of a birthday, Christmas or other traditional gift giving holidays or occasions.  It blesses my heart to be able to do little things for my family or very close friends this way …

There are surprises that are unexpected – the death of a loved one.  You know how it is commonly said that deaths come in three?  Because of loved ones recently passing on, I guess  I am sort of waiting for the other shoe to drop and the third to be announced.  I know that is a terrible way to think and God does not want me to expect this to happen, yet it just seems as if it always does.  Why is that?  And how about this …

Goofy and really unexpected surprises that you know will be appreciated such as when taking care of a home for a family that is dear to you while they are on vacation and the day that they are to arrive you not only feed the cat & fish, but you also dust, wash windows/glass table tops, clean the disgusting litter-box & food bowl, sweep hardwood floors, vacuum, and take out their trash and before starting all of this you lit candles to give the home that extra something-or-other smell.  Oh, before you went over to friend’s home, you also prepared a pot-roast meal in your crock-pot to leave in their fridge for them to just plug in and go the first day they and their children return to normal life of school and work instead of beaches, Disney, and pools of Florida.  And one more thing, you happen to know that the father of this family works really hard, for a demanding boss.  The dad travels quite a bit to China and on top of all of this, he has not been feeling well for almost a year.  He has been to many specialists, some out of state, and none can tell him what is wrong.  You know he will be tired and is probably already thinking of his engineering job, so wouldn’t it be fun to give him one less thing to worry about?  This is where the ‘roots are showing’ comes in … picture this for a moment:  a 42 ½ yr. old woman, without any make-up, hair pulled back in sloppy pony-tail walking down the main street of your hometown in the historic district.  This mom, or me if ya haven’t guessed, is wearing old flip-flops, old jean capri’s and a t-shirt.  If I have not scarred you yet with this mental pic, how about if I told you I was pushing a push-lawn mower?!  And my lovely girls (thank goodness they appeared in public more appropriately) were taking turns coming up behind me pulling the wagon that contained the crock-pot with the roast.  Yep, my old and gray roots were showing, but as you can tell, so where my country Kentucky-side-of-the-family roots brazenly out as well.  LOL!!!  I couldn’t help but sing the old tune from Sanford and Son (tv sitcom from the 70s/80s) in my head!  I thought I’d left home at a safe hour, however almost 4 minutes into our walk I hear a horn honk and am too embarrassed to look up to see who it is.  Whew, thank goodness it is one of the horse advisors from our club.  Have I ever mentioned that she is a dead-ringer, pretty much twin for Natalie Portman?  In just about every way possible?  Honestly, life is just not fair at times!  : )   And so, the dad of this family will arrive home in just a few hours to find that the girls and I also mowed their lawn and swept the front porch, walk, and public sidewalks.  My dear friend will have a fresh clean home to return to and dinner planned and put together in her fridge for her family tomorrow.  I pray that this gesture models for my girls the importance of friendship and doing something extra for another family.  I just wish I did this type of stuff for strangers instead of just friends or those who can pay me back –  I am working on this.  On the way home is pretty much the same description of me this Monday afternoon, except now I have green grass-stained feet, sweat stained t-shirt, and am just as gross as gross can be while pushing home my lawn mower.  I saw two other ladies  I know in our community – I kid you not!!  Help me out here, Lord, I am trying to do something nice.

Finally there are also those surprise-moments when a woman discovers a lump under her right armpit.  She keeps it to herself a few weeks and worries and prays late into the nights.  The lump is getting larger and this woman who is a mama and has two young ladies depending on her starts to drop things when using her right hand.  I finally told The Man on Saturday this past weekend when we had a chance to be alone for more than 10 minutes.  *sigh*  My doctor appointment is next week.

What should never be a surprise, yet because of Satan and the sin of Adam, it is … God is always good.  No matter what circumstance or surprise you find yourself in, this life brings nothing to you by chance on this earth.  He is Sovereign always and always He can be trusted.

Now I am off to go shower (finally!  I needed the ibuprofen to kick in first), finish dinner and we are off to a 4H horse work-ride this evening.  I have been unusually tired lately and I just feel too old for days like today anymore!  : )

In Him ~

Sandi

I wish I could be all grown-up in Him now …

My intentions were to not allow so much time to pass and stop neglecting my blog.  I have come to conclusion that I am really not a good blogger on many levels … topics, writing style, and consistency.  So I decided to pop on here this evening with a quick update and in doing so my email updated and I see a notification for a coupon offer from a store I visited for the first time on Saturday.  It is from Family Christian Bookstore and can I admit that oh, I had no idea about this store and I must say I enjoy it very, very, very much.  You see, we live in a small historic town @ ½ hour or more north of Dayton.  We are surrounded by farmland and the area is rich in beauty.  I am pleased with the amount of stores I have to choose from to shop.  This may be because I detest shopping, unless it is grocery and I am planning a special meal with unique ingredients and let’s not forget antiquing … oh yes, girlfriends; but other types of shopping, bleh!  No way.  I am okay with Goodwill, Walmart, or maybe the occasional jaunt to the very small mall just 20 minutes up the highway that has a Sears, JCPenny, and Elder-Beerman as the anchor stores.  I’m just not a frou-frou kinda gal nor do I appreciate the styles these days – for myself or my girls (I really need to learn to sew).  So imagine when on Saturday I find myself not only in need of a special gift for a very special piano teacher that tells others she has adopted me and our girls, but my husband is looking for a specific tool carried only by Lowe’s and honest to goodness the three Lowes in our area does not stock it, but the one Lowe’s in the bigger, fancier and wealthy suburb of Dayton does (these folks have the lawns who pay the folks to keep said lawns looking perfect who pay Lowe’s to stock needed tools so that they can service these folks – did this make sense?!) and I am off.  My oh my, oh my, oh my … I was in my Lincoln Navigator and felt like the small girl in the big city in a shabby vehicle.  S-E-R-I-O-U-S-L-Y.  I suddenly felt as if I were back in Silicon Valley in California and was reminded of everything I detested about living there.  Yet to be honest, I am not a total backwards hick, I did enjoy the eye-candy in the miles of high-end shops.  And nestled amongst these fancy strip malls (these are not your typical strip malls – they are beautifully manicured and had lovely fountains perfectly placed throughout the tree-lined drives) I see a large Christian Bookstore.  I could not resist.  After realizing I was lost and driving for longer than I should have been, I turned around and first confirmed where I needed to be and second I high-tailed it back to this Christian store before heading on to my original destination of the prettiest Lowe’s I have ever seen (it officially beats the ones in California if you can imagine that).  And I browsed said bookstore for almost 1 ½ hours!  Now you know how I came to receive said coupon offer in my email.  So on to the post …

… I open this email and find a devotional for the day.  The topic is Detest Dissension.  The few lines I saw had my attention, especially after some things I have experienced and openly posted about here, so I’d like to attach the devotion at the end of this post.  The reason I am bringing this to light is because I feel very bad about how I handled a mess I found myself in.  I have justified it with knowledge that I didn’t start it, didn’t want it and other than talking and praying with my husband and posting here about it, I have kept my mouth shut.  But God works differently.  I may be innocent of what I just typed, however in reading this devotional, especially after recently reading Prov. 15:18 myself, I now believe God is growing me and I am searching my heart through His perfect word.  I desire to be humble and ask forgiveness for sharing an ugly experience here.  I profess to live boldly for Him and instead I see I stumble greatly before Him and all to see.  Anger is an emotion God gave us and can be useful, yet it is such a fine and dangerous line.  And takes up a lot of energy, too much for this busy mama.  I will continue to seek His guidance in this area of weakness of mine and I pray to grow and honor Him.  Please forgive me and pray with me.  As my title says, I do wish I were made perfect and complete in Him and for Him now, but I know that will only happen when we Christians are in Heaven worshipping at His feet.  I think I will step up my prayer asking Jesus to come soon.

This weekend has been full of so much fun for our family, I haven’t even had our computer on since sometime midweek I think.  We are experiencing such awesome weather and have enjoyed the invites out recently from really nice Christian families.  Dancing Bug had a wonderful sleep-over this Friday with a fellow homeschool friend and other girls she hadn’t met before(this is a brave mom who hosted this girly-night), so The Man and I enjoyed an evening at the movies with Tumbling Lou (this was our first time out with her alone – ever).  We have been taking care of a friend’s home, cat, and fish while the family is at Disney, so we’ve enjoyed walking through the historic-district in our neighborhood in the mornings and evenings during this amazing weather.  We have pretty much been eating every meal off the grill – I just can’t resist grilling this time of year, we love it.   And my roses and peonies are in full bloom and gorgeous.  I can honestly say that I’ve enjoyed weeding and pruning my flower gardens!  Today Dancing Bug and I attended a new church.  Initially I was going to go alone, but when she found out mama was on a new adventure she just had to go (this young lady loves, loves, loves to try new things of all sorts).  A family in our church sometimes attends this church to visit with friends so I started thinking about looking into it and sure enough it is an Independent Baptist New Testament Church.  It was a challenging and therefore truthful message (I LOVE these kinds), the members are so kind, and it is very much like the church we attend now, except instead of being a ½ drive one way, it is all of about 6 minutes!  I am not saying we are changing churches, but I am drawn to the thought of having a church closer, and I will admit that the woman who gave me such grief over the last few months makes me very uncomfortable for many reasons.  Maybe it will be a place to go if we find ourselves running late or I need a break from the tension (I do not do well with conflict and I can not fake emotions.  I really need His strength and guidance through this trial).  Dancing Bug and I had lunch prepared and ready to eat outside on the back deck when The Man and Tumbling Lou arrived from our home church.   And then we were off to the really big piano recital today!  All of the students played very well and it was just a lovely time all around.  I have enjoyed our first year of piano and I do appreciate music, but I am so glad that after May we will go to every-other week until August after fair.  This next week is our last for the 2011-2012 school year.  I sit in the classroom typing now and I can ‘feel’ the disorganized mess behind me.  I am embarrassed to admit that I haven’t even graded papers yet from Friday’s work.  We have been that busy, but also I am that burned-out right now.  We are doubling up everyday and once we are finished, we will take the rest of May off (at least they will).  I’ll organize the classroom and start preparing for next year and come June we’ll start doing something every few days to keep it all fresh in their minds.  And come June we start watching friends after the public school is out for the summer and while their parents are at work … : )

I am so far behind in emails and reading other blogs, I just keep telling myself that I will catch up in a few weeks.  I am barely keeping up as a moderator on the homeschool forum I am a member of, so I really hope that those of you reading this who know I know I owe you email and/or blog responses will hang in there and not judge me too harshly as a bad friend.  I am sincerely sorry family and friends.  I wish I were good at keeping up and juggling all the plates in the air, but I am not and so I do let some drop and the one I choose first is technology (besides, I secretly believe tech is all a part of my government conspiracy theory … really … ah, another post, eh).

Readers, I pray you all have a wonderful week and thank you for stopping by.

In Him ~

Sandi

http://www.familychristian.com/blog/detest-dissension

This past week in review … and what a week it was!

Good Golly Miss Molly …

This past week began with The Man and me in the classroom Sunday evening hanging up streamers and decorations in preparation for testing week.  I like to make it fun with decorations, candles, music, games, surprises (gifts and for each daughter their own big box of chocolate creams).  We have theme days and certificates, ribbons, and stickers to give out.  I truly want the girls to be relaxed while testing and to have a positive and fun thought of the whole testing process.  We even decorate t-shirts to wear with our school name on them.  Except this year we forgot to wear our t-shirts … oops.  If you don’t know what tests I’m talking about, I am referring to the dastardly standardized tests that Ohio requires in the state’s laws to home school.  You know, all those tests that the public schools teach to as opposed to real learning (on a side note, in the current issue of NEA – makes me ill to type that – there is an article regarding cheating in some schools.  REALLY?!!  Ya think).  We use the Iowa test.  My whole attitude about these tests this year has done a 180* ~ they are silly and really will not tell us anything about our daughters we do not already know, nor are they a good measure of the girls learning capabilities.  So, I explain to our daughters what these tests really do – they grade mama.  There you go.  And they are finished for another year.  I really think that I will start now looking for and interviewing a Christian, state certified teacher to possibly do assessments for next school-year.  The Man and I are in prayer about this.  Anyway, it was a bit of a stressful week with this as well as our usual activities and I am just thankful that it is over – the tests will be mailed out tomorrow.  YAY!!

We had an unsuspecting surprise Thursday evening.  After ballet when I asked Dancing Bug how it went, I was taken aback by her response.  She described it as weird, uncomfortable, gross, and AKWARD (she leaned forward and boldly annunciated this last word).  My goodness, why?  What happened I wondered out loud?  Apparently the ballet teacher took it upon herself to have The Talk with a large group of mostly 4th and 5th graders.  Without parent knowledge/consent.  And directed the girls to come to either her or one of the teenage helpers with questions … did you catch that?  NOT the parents.  Needless to say after more questioning and trying to put the pieces together and especially to allow Dancing Bug to explain her version and feelings about all of this, I then contacted the ballet teacher at home that evening.  Long story short, this teacher very much overstepped boundaries and I pray has a clearer understanding of her error in judgment.  I can tell you that she did not take a biblical stance in all of this.  Dancing Bug will not be returning and sadly she will not get to participate in the recital the end of next month.  The very next day I ran into another mom at the library who shared similar views and was praying about allowing her daughter to return to finish the year/recital, or pull out now.  I can not guide another family on this, I can just pray that they too are praying about guidance in deciding what to do.  Later on Friday I return home to find out that two other families will probably allow their girl to stay, but they are not happy about any of this either and are contacting either the teacher or the Community Center where the class is conducted.  At least I know I didn’t over-react.  How would any of you have handled this situation?

Now Friday – Friday was awesome fun!  We started the day off late and in the horse barn (we were finished with testing on Thursday), had a fun lunch afterwards and then Dancing Bug attended her first book club meeting for homeschooled 4th-8th girls at the library.  We ended up meeting such a lovely family, and the mom and I sat for a few hours talking the entire time.  We couldn’t stop so we took our five kids collectively out for a snack before we all had to return home.  Dancing Bug loved doing the book club too – the book was Number the Stars by Louis Lowry.  The Christian lady who guides these book discussions, and has graduated two of her own children all the way through homeschooling, gave each participant everything needed to finish a lap-book at home regarding the book discussed.  This was the first and last meeting for this year, so we are looking forward to it again in the fall.

Finally – the best part of this post ~  yesterday, Saturday, was a huge day around here.  The girls have been practicing for months for this upcoming audition.  I think I finally understand these entire piano auditions – April was for the Nat’l Federation, and yesterday was the Nat’l Guild.  Yesterday’s was the really big one – the girls now have a report card that will follow them each year and can be used as credit later on.  And guess how they did?  Tumbling Lou went first and she scored a Superior – (minus), Dancing Bug scored a Superior!!!  I can not tell you how much these two have practiced to memorize their pieces and chords.  Tumbling Lou memorized more songs and so she qualified for state status, and Dancing Bug qualified for District.  The Man and I are immensely happy for both of them.  Next year they are both going for 10 pieces to memorize and will also be judged in duets.  This is something their piano teacher, Mrs. D, and both girls have discussed, but it was a ‘sign’ when the judge wrote about this possibility on one of their report cards.  Very cool!  : )

It was great to be in the Lord’s House today (I have been missing for two weeks for various reasons whether it be a sick child or travel) and I missed it.  We were early today (even for Sunday School), so we took a long, country back-road leisurely drive and enjoyed the sunshine that has been missing for too long.  The sun is coming and going this afternoon, but I hear this week holds higher temps and I’m chomping at the bit for them to rise, rise, rise.  I like hot and humid weather about now!  Next week is a regular school week, so I may be here, and the following is a tight busy week in the classroom, and did I mention it is our final week of school!!!!!!  Yes!  I’ll probably not be back then until after May 11th.  Our work rides start next week and are every Monday from here on out until Fair Week!!!  I  LOVE this time of year!

If any of my readers are home schoolers and would enjoy some Christian home school support, may I suggest that you check into The Homeschool Lounge!  You will find such supportive and encouraging moms who will blow your socks off – these women are amazing.  I promise no matter your style or method, you will find hundreds of others who are teaching and bringing up their children in the Lord just as you.  I have really enjoyed my time there and during some difficult bumps in our homeschool/classroom journey, I really do not know what I would have done without some of the prayers and wise advice I received from this forum.  My time on there this week has been limited, but I really like checking in a few times a week – it just helps me.  I felt the need to post this, maybe a reader is praying for guidance now and God prompted me to put this in your path.

The girls have a friend over right now so I better check on them and pass out some snacks!  Then I will start calling parents in California.

Thank you for stopping by, and I sincerely pray everyone reading has a blessed week.  I challenge you to be in your Bibles daily this week!

In Him~

Sandi

ps – do my edits show up?  I am a horrible typer … this is the second time I have had to edit this post – I either can not type the tense I intended, or I leave words out entirely.  *sigh*