Morning Friend!

Hello!!

How is your day in quarantine treating you? I have a few moments and thought it has been a while since we sat down and had a chat, got caught up on what is new in our lives, right? So here I sit with coffee in hand ready to chew the fat a little with you this morning!!

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Today is: Thursday April 9, 2020

Outside is: It is brisk and consistently rainy. Oh I love this weather so much!! I sit wrapped up in a cuddly blanket with my coffee or tea and just watch the rain come down. It smells divine. There is something so peaceful about rain.

I can smell: My son bought me a candle for my birthday that is pineapple scented. I would say that it smells great right now but I just let one of my doggies in from outside and I would say the extremely pungent scent of wet dog is overpowering the pineapple  at the moment. Ewh.

In the oven for dinner: I am excited for dinner tonight!! I am making chicken alfredo pizza!! Homemade pizza trumps store bought every time!! I will probably make a basic turkey pepperoni pizza for the boys too. They are traditionalist when it comes to pizza flavors!! Ha Ha!!

What I have been thinking about: Wow. So much has been going on in my brain lately. While Belle and I have been studying the book of James for our Bible lessons, I have also been reminiscing as to how we would share Jesus as a family during this season for years.  Our family favorite is taking surprise Easter egg hunts to unsuspecting families. We would decorate a basket, sometimes with little gifts inside, then hide all over their front yard plastic eggs filled with little candies except for one, because the tomb was empty.  This is the first year, because of the quarantine, we have not been able to do this. This is so sad. Bringing this back around to my thought process, James was talking to the Christians about facing trials in that period. God called the Christians to share their faith.  It was not always safe to share Jesus at that time yet they found a way.  We need to heed this truth even today.  Just because we are stuck inside we can still find ways to share The Good News. We have been talking about how Jesus chose to be stuck on a cross because He knew it was for our good. We are choosing to be stuck indoors because we know it is for the good of the health of our country. There are still ways we have been brainstorming about together as to how we can still share the joy of Jesus.  The girls took chalk out and covered our sidewalk with bible verses. We sent out Easter cards and uplifting texts to family and friends. We decorated our front window with a sign that says “He is risen” We are wearing our Jesus Never Fails sweatshirts when we are out getting essentials. Even though the enemy might be trying to isolate us and make this the first Easter that gets forgotten, no thoughts about Jesus, bringing in depression and sadness in this containment, our family is choosing to fight back and find ways to share the peace that comes with keeping Jesus at the focus of everything.

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The project I am working on: My favorite project right now, I am going to build a place to plant my mini garden!! I was at Aldi the other day and found a mini greenhouse for under $40! I know, I should only have gone in for the essentials, eggs, fruit, bread and such but while I was waiting in line, 6 feet apart from the other shoppers, I looked at the lowers shelf next to me and there were 2 boxes being ignored. GREENHOUSES!! I am so excited!! It is small but perfect to grow one or two tomato plants, some onions and maybe a pepper plant!! I can’t wait to see the difference from container growing to greenhouse!! Fun!!

Mood today: I am content. It has been a while since I could say that. My world has been…well…unexpected trials and challenges that are meant to shake your faith. Would not wish that on anyone, but it has shone me who I really am and content in this moment is a good thing.

What I am reading: Literally just started this book last night, it is The Ezekiel Generation: The Father’s Heart for Israel and The Church in The Last Days  by Grant Berry. The author is a Jewish believer who wants to help The Church reconnect with Israel, leading Gentiles and Jews to Christ before the end of days. So I am only 35 pages in, but so far it is interesting.

School stuff: Well this quarantine has not really changed our learning over here.  We are still doing the english, math, science, history and bible stuff. I am a little sad that our reading of To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee is over. That has always been one of my favorites. Historical reads that really help you picture the time period and understand what it was like to live in that era give the past life, at least to me. Belle was not impressed. She thankfully has a hard time connecting with the negative thoughts of the people against the blacks. It makes no sense to her to dislike someone based on the color of their skin. To treat someone as being less than someone else just because of the amount of melanin in their bodies just does not compute in her brain.  I am blessed in that aspect, but trying to explain that this was the norm and that there are still people that still believe and live this way was painful to my heart.

Picture to share:

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Belle made herself a cute snack box for doing her homework. She is so stinking creative!!

It was great getting to reconnect with you friend. Praying The Lord will bless you and keep you safe from harm and illness. Stay safe and I look forward to hanging out again soon!!

Mini Service Project

I believe that sometimes the simplest gifts can mean the most.

One of my friends, with the most beautiful soul is going on a mission trip to Zimbabwe this week.  I am so filled with joy for her! She has been wanting to do something for quite a while now. The Lord finally spoke to her and let her know where He needed her most…Africa.

I am embarrassed to admit, I do not know much about Africa. I do know that since we homeschool, we are about to know quite a bit!! Ha ha ha!!! It is a country that my friend’s church has been actively helping. I know they sent a mission team to Uganda last year. The stories I have heard about that trip were fabulous!

From what we have read about Zimbabwe, Christianity is there. A good percentage of the people claim to be Christians or follow islam. Ancestor worship is the most common form of worship. Because the people of Zimbabwe are a mix of European and African culture they tend to mix religious beliefs of the old with the new. That being said, there is need of missionary work even among the Christians there. My friend and her team will be traveling out in search of those in the less affluent areas, more toward the isolated villages that have not heard the name of our Lord and Savior. What an exciting journey!!

We did discover she can wear her regular clothes there without disrespecting the people there. Yay!! We also know that the people there love jewelry. Awesome!! So a few of us got together for a service project…099 We made salvation bracelets for passing out to the people my friend and her team will be talking too!

The beads all have meanings. I am sure you have seen these before, but here is a quick reference as to what each color symbolizes.

Black- represents our sin

Red- represents the blood of Jesus

White- represents the forgiveness and cleansing of our sins

Clear Blue- represents the water of the baptism

Purple- represents the royalty we are now a part of

Yellow- represents knowing that we will receive heaven because of Jesus

Green- represents the new life we have been given

Gold-represents heaven

It was a blessing for my girls and I to get to be a part of making these little remembrances for the people our friend will meet. It was such an honor to be able to pray over them and for the souls who will be receiving them! Little trinkets, that could mean so much to someone who is just getting to know Jesus!! May her trip be blessed and filled with opportunities to share the Word of the Lord!!

I am so excited for my sweet missionary friend to be making her trip to Zimbabwe!! I know that she is going to make such a difference to someone!!

 

Precious Tea Get Together

My younger girls and I were invited to the most wonderful tea.

This beautiful young lady whom we love dearly hosted this event.

She was so excited to have gotten her own set of china!!

056She made us a wonderful array of sandwiches, chicken, pb&j, egg salad and more!!

058She even made us salads! Here is the fruit salad she made us.

059She then had us adjourn into the living room where we had a little game of “how well do you know your mother/daughter.”

It was really fun!! She had questions like: What is your mom’s favorite essential oil? What is your mom’s favorite television show? What is your daughter’s favorite movie?

 

Then we had a dance off!! Plugged in the connect and away we danced!!

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We had dessert after. Look at her display for us!!

057 This is the age of Instagram!! So photo session was next on the list!!

Our girls are so funny!!

080071082It was such a lovely afternoon!!

All planned by an amazing 14 year old girl!!

We are so blessed to have such lovely friends!!

 

 

Rebecca’s Resurrection Gardens

I am so proud of my Rebecca!

She is just amazing and has been blessed with a servants heart!

She has decided that she would like to focus her studies on becoming a Children’s Ministry Leader.

She has been serving for a few years now and really enjoys it!

So since this is her passion, I have had her do interviews with members of our church’s Children’s Ministry and look into how to become one since High School is in a few months and we need to direct her studies.  That being said, this is the second time I have asked Rebecca to make a lesson plan and run a “mini” lesson. Here is the project she came up with, to go along with her teaching,  since Easter is on its way…

Resurrection Gardens!

reserection projectToo cute right?

It was the perfect time to do this fun activity too!!

Really fun way for the kids to wait for Resurrection Day!!

We just found $.89 plant trays, $3.00 dirt and $4.00 grass seed at Home Depot. Then at Dollar Tree we got 12 seed starter cups for $1.00. We already had the Popsicle sticks, so those were free.

As the girls keep watering the grass seed it should sprout by Easter.

I told the mommas that Easter morning they should put a small piece of cloth in the “tomb” to show He has risen!!

I know we did this craft at home originally, but I love that she incorporated it in a lesson for others so that they could remember to focus on the meaning of this time of year daily too.

I am so proud of her!!

Great job Rebecca!

6 He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee:
7 ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’
Luke 24:6-7

Tea and Scones for Teens

Rebecca and her friends learned how to have a proper tea at church the other day.

It was so lovely!

044The girls had to learn everything from setting the tables to making the food.

Here up above they are learning how to make scones :)

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Yummy!!

They had to learn how to make proper tea sandwiches too.

040How to set a serving plate full of cookies…

042…then place them on the serving holders…

037…how to set the table…

048…finally how to properly serve and drink the tea.

047Such a lovely group of girls! They did an amazing job too!!

I know in today’s society this might not sound very important.Kids are more interested in what stars are wearing and dating than proper manners.  Thank goodness a few of us still feel this is a right of passage and a gift to know how to be a proper hostess! Thank you Ms Linda for taking the time to teach the girls  etiquette! These are going to be some amazing Proverbs women taught by some lovely Titus wives!!

036Terrific Teens Loving the Lord together at tea!

 

Someone Lost Her Tooth

069My little angel lost her front tooth!!

Look at those incredible nails her sister painted for her to celebrate!!

She is so excited that she has finally lost a front tooth like so many of her friends already have, not to mention that she got a whole dollar for that shiny little chunk of calcium!!

I know I should be joyous with her but honestly it makes me a little sad.

Yes I am happy she is getting her “big girl teeth”  and that she is growing into such a beautiful Godly young lady. It is just that I know, as she ages, no matter how hard I try, she will be loosing a little bit more of her innocent love of life to the world. God has such wonderful plans for her I am sure. She has been a blessing to me from the day she was conceived and I am grateful that the Lord had given her to me to keep that innocence in my heart as she grows! To see the world through the eyes of a child, to see more good than bad, to be present in the moment not worrying about the future….childhood…something that now, is to fleeting, when it should be cherished, and held on to, for as long as possible.

Congratulations baby girl on your most recent step into a bigger world!!

God will be holding your hand the entire way…

and I will be there holding your other.

Aimee is Fabulous!!

I am such the proud Momma right now!!

Aimee did so amazing at this wedding over the weekend!!

Thank you everyone for your prayers for her!!!

I have been dying to show you pictures of what she can do!!

I have made myself stay away from social media so I would not completely engulf people with my joy! (so sorry if you were a person I ran into…Yes I did go on and on gushing with pride…)

Okay, so I have waited long enough and I got permission to post just literally a picture she shot.

She is right. These are actually for the bride but this one the bride has already received and has posted herself on social media!!

001This was the first kiss.

Perfect right?

I can show you just one other picture of this beautiful couple that Aimee’s second shooter Natasha took. Natasha is an incredible photographer too. Here is her picture. (only because this one the bride has seen and posted too)

weddingThey look so happy to be married don’t they?

They are so in love, it is precious. God blessed this union!!

It was such a God inspired day that Aimee got to be a part of.

The weather was CRAZY that day. The wind was blowing so hard! Trees had been blowing down all over the place!!

God is so good. The wind died down to a breeze, mostly a slight breeze for the ceremony. Then picked back up again when the festivities were finished.

Aimee had only charged them a very tiny amount for this. Pretty much just to cover her costs (new battery, memory card and a few printed pictures). She knew they could not afford her prices, or any other photographer, and was so scared to do this but felt led by the Lord to do this wedding. She was calm when she was there, knew that God was with her, and did a fabulous job! When God is with you, only good things are produced and this is proof!!

 

I love that Aimee is thinking about maybe doing weddings now.

She is talented.

She and Natasha actually make a great team together.

Praying God will guide these two young women into this field if this is the path He has chosen for them.

 

Have a picture perfect, blessed day my friends!

She is Another Year Older

Processed with RookieMy little girl is growing up!

Just a few years ago,

Becca spring 2008 001Look how cute my little girl was!!

037So happy and cheerful to have around…

Becca's 7th Birthday 006Such a joy she has been to us!!

020Growing into a more Godly young woman every single day.

021You surround yourself with good Godly friends too.

019You are wise beyond your years.

Processed with VSCOcam with p5 presetYour a princess of the most High God!

Processed with VSCOcam with m2 presetIt was a pleasure to get to surprise you with some happiness on the anniversary of the day you took your first breath and I got to hold you for the first time in my arms though you have always been in my heart sweet girl.

011 010 016 012Love you BEAUTIFUL DAUGHTER!!

You are so special to me!!

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Getting Ready for the Parade (on Veteran’s Day)

 

 

 

 

phonephun 055 phonephun 056 phonephun 057 phonephun 058These kiddos got up so early!!

They were at the VFW by 7 am on their day off of school, decked out in their dress blues, ready to march.

Then they were off to the parade site.

I am so glad we changed Michael’s division. This group does so much more to serve the community. Service to/for others is monumental in raising good adults. Here all the cadets WANT to serve too.

founders da parade 4 founders day parade 3 founder day parade 2 founders day  paradeLove watching this kids.

They are amazing.

The conduct they have, the pride they have in our country is admirable.

These young men and women are focused and determined and are going to make a difference in this world.

So proud that my son is part of the United States Naval Sea Cadet program.

 

New Dress

040Okay, its a little short, but she looks so darn cute!

Someone was having a bit of a grumpy day. The heat was getting to her and she just was uncomfortable.

Then out of the blue a package came for her from her godparents!!

God bless them!!

A cute little dress with a bright pink purse to match arrived in a little brown box all the way from Utah!!

Happiness in a box!!

It brightened Belle’s day by a thousand percent!!

Oh happy day!!

 

Hope  your weekend is blessed friend!!