Friday, October 30, 2009

Foto Friday: Motion

I have to admit this had my stymied at first... We have great motion pictures of Sean during soccer season but that season is now over. We have great pictures of Ian and Evan "practicing" their TaeKwon Do courtesy of Sean. Once again those were photos past... What to do?

Then inspiration hit Saturday afternoon as Evan as I did a little cooking... Ok, so he taste tested and I cooked but every good cook needs an able-bodied taste tester! Someone with refined taste buds which haven't been dulled by age. We hope you enjoy our motion pictures.... We found them to be quite steamy but don't believe they will cause any kind of eruption!

So sorry for the pun! And yes it was intentional, nothing that bad could be otherwise! We are a family who loves a good pun. In fact my husband likes to see how badly he can make the boys groan... okay maybe they may not ALL appreciate the fine art of the pun but they are getting there! ha ha

Please come and join us with Rebecca at Renaissance to join for the FOTO FRIDAY Challenge. Next week's challenge "Dress Up," either in costume or all dressed up! I personally am looking forward to this challenge!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The first of many projects...

A Homemade Christmas at

I was so tickled I more or less finished the first of many projects.. All I need to do to this bag is make a button hole and add two buttons. I really like this bag but am going to make a few changes, mainly make the strap longer and make the whole bag slightly smaller. In fact, I would like to make one with an adjustable strap but will have to wait until we go to town next week.... Considering I didn't have a pattern and wasn't sure what I was doing, I was really impressed with the fact that it only took 3 1/2 hours to make. Plus it is reversible! Now that I understand the concept (Thank you Michelle) I can see more of these bags in varying sizes in the future.

Snow, snow, and more snow!!

Where did the week go? I had planned to sit down on Monday to post Multitude Monday and well now it is Wednesday! In all honesty, I do not remember much of Monday. Chris was gone most of last week which resulted in me not sleeping more than 4 hours a night. Boy do I miss that man when he is gone!! After 19 years of marriage he is still my best friend and I look forward to every day God gives me with him!! Ok, some days I don't look forward to as much as others but I still am grateful God has given me such a wonderful, kind, loving, gentle man for my husband. I look back and think of how disobedient I was at the time and marvel! As some of you may know I went through a time of rebellion. I'll spare you the details as they aren't pretty... Just know that I wasn't living in God's will and was miserable. Even my dating Chris was rebellious as Chris was NOT a christian and I was.. (We were most definitely unequally yoked!!) However God blessed me... Chris accepted the Lord as his personal Lord and Saviour within 6 months of our getting married and my heart was softened. No I DO NOT recommend this route for others!! But I think it was also a means to turn my life around! I do NOT know where I would be if it hadn't been for those events! When we got married, well it was for life! And it still is for LIFE! I thank God daily for this man I call my husband!

Oh my I digress!! Nothing like a little bit of "soap-boxing"!

It is snowing! It started Monday evening and has been gently snowing every since. At last count I would say we have about 4 to 6 inches of the fluffing white stuff! And... drum roll!! The temperatures are absolutely gorgeous! 25 to 30 degrees!! I try to ignore the fact that it is still October!

This week has been a busy week so far. I've made two breakfast casseroles, a batch of gnocchi, 6 lbs of chicken "nuggets", 4 lbs of barbecued chicken legs, 4 lbs of teriyaki chicken legs (I thought I grabbed the chicken wings on sale but got these by mistake but they were even cheaper at .65 a lb!!), and 4 lbs of shredded barbecued chicken all for the freezer. We also made a nutella filled brioche loaf. Good but next time I think we will shape them as croissants. Did I mention what the "little" dog did last week? Caleb knocked the container of our whole wheat fruit hand pies off the container and ate every LAST remaining one! I mean we are talking a cute little 14 lb dog here and it was 11 fruit hand pies!! I was only gone for 10 minutes and thought I could leave him in the house for that short of a time. Who knew he could jump up and knock them off! So now I have the dough in the refrigerator to make another batch. And no he didn't get truly sick! His belly was beyond FAT and he just laid around for about 12 hours and then was up like nothing was wrong!!

(Yes I know there are those of you who knew of my "no animals on the furniture" policy.. It is the thing he is allowed on, and he is really good about not getting on any other furniture!)

Speaking of projects...

Here are the fabrics for the shopping bags and reversible book bags! The book bags will have denim on one side (BOYS thank you for all the holey "worn-out" jeans!!) and the cool girlie print on the other.

I love stripes, polka dots, and flowers! Once they are completed I will post a picture...

Oh,oh,oh... It looks like we may find out something official this week about the job in Indiana. I feel so bad because we just found out that the hiring official has been out with the flu! Poor thing... I pray she is feeling better now!!

Well I better get a move on as the sewing machine is beckoning me as well as a HUGE pile of magazines. I am determined to get them sorted and find a new home for them, preferably in the hands of someone else who can enjoy them!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Foto Friday: Berries

I must say I was really skeptical about this week's challenge. I mean, where was I going to get berries? Chris was going to Anchorage for the week and I had no plans to drive to town until today. Ok, so I won't be driving to town, Chris will be driving me to town since he is now home! Yes, once "winter" gets here I kindly relinquish all driving responsibilities to him No snow yet (or even in the forecast) but there is the possibility of ice so... NO Thank-you! I'll leave the hill driving to someone else, like my wonderfully capable husband. Who, might I add, has been through a government sponsored/recognized tactical driving course where he learned to drive in CRAZY conditions. Like when are you EVER going to need to know how to ram someones car off the road. Maybe if you live in LA? Road Rage anyone? Ok, I digress!! Where was I? Ah, the berries... Then inspiration hit... Or maybe it was the realization that I still had a 1 gallon bag of wild cranberries sitting in the refrigerator waiting to be processed (where they still wait!) And what about the bags of raspberries in the freezer picked from our garden earlier this "summer".

Oh so delicious, lingonberries!
(aka lowbush, wild cranberries)

Lingonberries and wild raspberries from our "backyard."



So I hope you enjoy this weeks Foto Friday! Drop on over to Rebecca's at Renaissance to see all the other photos, pick up some great ideas, and possibly even add a submission of your own!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Multitude Monday....Chilly morning....

holy experience

Woke up to a chilly morning today. I think it is the coldest we have had it so far. It was 9 degress Fahrenheit and at 1000 it has made it up to a balmy 14 degrees. I woke up in the middle of the night and the sky was so clear. The stars shone like twinkling lights in the sky! How can a person look up at a sky like that and still doubt in God? It never ceases to amaze me how stubborn we can be... I thank God daily for having given us the present of His Son to take away my sins. But I do know that without personally accepting that gift, it would be useless to me! Thank you Lord for having touched my heart, even in my stubbornness!!

There are so many things I have to be thankful for but here are just a few for today.

83. no snow on the ground
84. clean dishes

85. family game night

86. a hubby who is only gone a few days each year now instead of the months at a time like in the past.

87. Young people willing to play in the cold for to raise funds for new uniforms!
88. DSL, hmm did I include that one once before? Have I mentioned how incredible it is to have high speed internet?
89. Being blessed to live in a country where I am allowed to gather with other Christians in order to worship without fear of persecution!!
90. winning candles, tealights, and a DVD from Homestead Originals General Store over at Wandering Quail Road , Thanks Melonie!!

I absolutely love the fact that the candles are not colored, have great scents, and come in reusable wide mouth 1/2 pint mason jars.

91. Have I ever mentioned I love "mason" jars! I love the shapes, colors, and designs on some of the "older" versions. They are so fun to fill whether its for gifts, home preserving, or just storage!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Foto Friday: Self Portraits

Well, I honestly say I wouldn't have done this if it hadn't been for Rebecca!! I hate pictures of myself.. but she's right. My family does need remembrances of me, to know that I wasn't gone but a part of their lives growing up. For years I've intentionally stayed out of the pictures, not liking what I saw. Vanity!! Pretty much sums it up in one word. I didn't like what was pictured, didn't like what I had become. The svelt young woman was no longer present. Yes, it hurt my pride to see that I was no longer young, thin, and in control. But you know, the Lord has been working in my heart again. I say again because it is a never-ending process! Again, because sometimes I turn away and don't let HIM work in my heart. But recently I've felt the tuggings and stirrings. LORD, you are doing a work in me, if only I step aside. It can be painful but that pain brings blessed relief! Relief in knowing that I DON'T have to be in control. Relief in knowing that GOD does have a plan and well frankly I don't NEED to see all the details. HE lets me know them as needed. It's taken a while and the process does not end with this realization.. Thankfully God is patient and I know HE will continue the process!!

Enough of my waxing philosophical. Yes, vanity is an issue in these photos. I realized I desperately need to use more mosturizer, drink more water, and pluck, pluck, pluck. Where did all that hair come from? Actually, I know... I can thank my Siciclian heritage! Thank you Grandma Rose!! Hey, its okay they are good strong eyebrows with lots of character... but I think the moustache really has to go. It's a good thing my hubby went to town today. The poor guy is going to get a phone call in a while with a list of things to pick up. But the photos you are about to see are untouched... no makeup, no touch-ups, no editing, no styled hair. The the silly, laughing, smiling me!

I hope you enjoy these brief glimses... by the way there will be more photos posted today. They will be the ones after the plucking, styling, and mosturizing (sorry but it must be done....)

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Foto Friday (delayed until Thursday, Water...)

Okay folks this is only 6 to 7 days late but I did get it in before the Friday cut-off!! See we were down in Anchorage for the regional soccer tournament and well, frankly, we were kinda busy... Did I mention we were acting as chaperones and sleeping in a gymnasium as well?

The water shots are of Turnagain Arm... the tidal flats to be exact. The tide was out, more or less. I had hoped for close up shots but we just never got down to the waters edge. Oh there has been no editing done to these pictures either. Our old program died and until today we didn't have the internet speed necessary to use the on-line programs.

Since we were at a soccer tournament I am including some soccer pictures as well. It was really windy on Saturday with gusts up to 75 miles an hour which made for some interesting soccer!! No real actions shots as the wind was blowing too hard to hold the camera steady but a good one of the team any way!

By the way, we now have high speed internet and it is so awesome. No more busy signals, no more dial-up and best of all... No more waiting for 10 minutes for pictures to load!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Multitude Monday turned Wonder Filled Wednesday!

holy experience

"But be not thou far from me, O LORD: O my strength, haste thee to help me." Psalm 22:19

Right now this verse pretty sums things up for me! Over the past days it seems as though the LORD is farther and farther away but I know such is not the case. It is so easy to try and rely on my own strength but it fails me every time. So now I am crying out to the LORD to be my strength. Is it easy? No but then the peace comes and makes it bearable again. So now I thank the LORD, in all... The little things, the big things, even the unanswered prayers or make that the not yet known answered prayers! As I sit here meditating on God's provisions, I feel my spirit lightening already! Thank you LORD!

So now Multitude Monday is more like Wonder filled Wednesday

51. crystal clear blue skies
52. bugs flying about
53. an empty refrigerator but a full freezer
54. plants given for free
55. aloe for burns
56. meeting friends in person for the first time
57. yummy butter laced biscuits
58. belly warming stews
59. homemade sweet and sour pork
60. NO leftovers because of hearty appetites
61. pleading for money to buy a book at the book fair
62. a signed copy of "Hank, the cow dog"
63. a new recipe to try with dinner
64. a new recipe to remake into other delicious ideas!!
65. fresh scent of warm laundry just out of the dryer
66. homemade laundry detergent lightly scented with essential oils
67. homemade vanillas brewing in a the cabinet
68. homemade cranberry jelly made from wild cranberries loving picked by young willing hands!
69. the thought of DSL Internet connections...
70. packages to mail
71. cards to make for holiday cheer
72. stationary to make for those I hold dear
73. old magazines to peruse for homemade gift ideas
74. thinking of that just right gift to make for family far away
75. crumbs on the kitchen floor
76. piles of laundry

As I look at my list above I see how God blesses me daily! From the piles of laundry caused by young men playing with abandon to the crumbs on the floor which in and of itself is a sign of God's provision! God has truly blessed me and continues to bless me daily when I only take a moment to step back and look around. 77 & 78. HE has blessed me with a husband who loves HIM and in turn loves me. 79, 80, 81 & 82. Who willingly stays up a little later at night so we can share time together, who stays home a little later in the mornings so he can get the boys up and pray with them before their day begins and he heads off to work.

Monday, October 05, 2009

Multitude Monday

holy experience

31. Slightly lowered cholesterol.
32. Melting snow.
33. Cappucino candles.
34. Broken toes
35. Scoring 1st goal in soccer "career."
36. A desire to learn.
37. Spiky aloe vera plants
38. warm muffins
39. The smell of burning corn meal, least we should forget that the pizza is done.
40. Homemade pizza
41. Homemade pizza sauce sweetened with a touch of maple syrup!
42. Green grass covered in frost.
43. Long brown lashes.
44. warm quilts of polyester squares made with love by arthiritic hands long ago..
45. memories of those sweet gnarled hands as they lovingly pinched and patted my checks.
46. the combined smells of anchovies, sardines, and garlic.
47. old recipe card boxes
48. shelves overflowing with recipe books and boxes.
49. sauerkraut frementing in a crock.
50. piles of clothes all over the living room floor, too small, too big, and some too worn but all a blessing!

Once again photos will have to be added at a later date! Since everyone is at school today I decided it would be a great time to regain control of the kitchen and prepare lunch/dinner items for the freezer.
Today's list includes:
-chocolate chip cookies
-chocolate zucchini muffins
-carrot muffins
-chocolate chip banana muffins
-apple muffins
-shredded pork in the crockpot.

I'll let everyone know tomorrow (maybe..) what all was accomplished today. We cleaned the younger boys' room over the weekend and I was appalled! It isn't a wonder that they've been suffering from colds and the like with the amount of dust/dirt in their room. We moved out everything from under the bed and everything that was one the floor. After vaccuming, dusting, and picking up the trash from under the bed and dresser (how does it get under there?) we started sorting toys and clothes. The task is still not finished nor will be any time soon. We did find out that Sean has outgrown most of his winter gear but Ian has not... So this means we will be looking for winter gear for him. Snow boots, snow pants, winter coat... Thankfully he can wear his dad's and brother's hats/gloves so I guess the guys will be sharing this winter. Oh don't get me wrong! They aren't lacking for hats or gloves... We seem to have an abundance of them. At times I think they are like rabbits as we keep finding more and more pairs! But then the military has issued Chris a number of pairs over the years so I guess it is to be expected we would have a bunch!

Friday, October 02, 2009

Foto Friday challenge

How appropriate that this week's challenge is "Black and White." See we've been getting snow off and on all week long. Ugh, is winter here already? I am afraid so... I must admit I am even less prepared for winter this year then I was last year. How is it the snow keeps coming earlier and earlier each year we are here?
Still no word on Indiana. I would love to say I am dilligently praying for nothing more than a right attitude but such is NOT the case. Yes, I've been begging, even pleading that Chris gets this job in Indiana. I know that he is ready for the move as well. But I must admit each time that I beg and plead for God to move us, in the next breath I find myself humbly apologizing... First and foremost, I want God's will and blessing on our lives, even if it is not our hearts' desire. I want to feel His spirit moving in me. To not be overwhelmed with disappointment if someone else if found to fill the position. To have my husband not feel as though he is lacking because someone else was chosen. God has been so good to us! We have been blessed in more ways that I can count... However, He has created a desire in me to acknowledge what he has DONE and is doing in my life. There are many who do NOT know the particulars of my past, nor will they unless the Lord leds me to post them. Even though I was saved as a young child, there were times in my adolescense and young adulthood that I sought my own will. AND WAS MISERABLE!!! These are NOT times I am proud of, yet I know God brought me through them. He saved me from myself! For that I am eternally grateful!!

And now onto the Foto Friday challenge.... Thanks Rebecca, I am really enjoying this even if it is often Friday morning that I am snapping photos!

Our once "chicken coop" now sits empty and alone....

Chris and Lily

By the way, Lily is a testament to my odd sense of humor. Aside from the white cross on her chest, she is black. And what colors are lilies? White! Our last black dog was Kohl.. Our little brown dog is Caleb, Hebrew for, none other than, "dog" but it also means "faithful." I am so looking forward to this next weeks challenge! WATER... hmm, I wonder if it frozen qualifies???