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Monday, January 31, 2011

change is in the air…


So this morning my kids were pretty annoyed with me.  What a great way to start a Monday.  They were upset because I had  a list on the table waiting for them when they got up.  They came to the table and started reading it, not saying anything to me.  By their expressions I could tell they were not happy with my list.  But I said nothing.  I decided to allow the list to sink in for a while they had breakfast. 

This is the list that they met at the table today:

Up daily at 8:00am, unless told otherwise. (IF I have to get you out of bed, you will be required to go to bed at 9pm, lights off with no music or electronics (ie... ipods) in your room and miss out on any forms of entertainment for the evening.)

Be productive from 8am until after supper and evening chores are completed.

(No gaming, YouTube watching, or other forms of being entertained).

    • meals

    • animal care

    • personal hygiene (shower, teeth, hair, trimming nails, shaving, etc)


      • 2 hours assigned reading

      • 2 hours writing (spelling, vocabulary, communication books, miscellaneous)

      • 1 hour math (assigned books, flash cards, math projects, etc)

    • employment (ask dad if he needs you for any ranch work OR ask dad if there are any ranch related tasks you can do to earn some spending cash.)

    • volunteer

    • exercise (go for a walk, ride your bike, your ideas)

    • house work

    • meal preparation

    • pleasure reading

    • letters to friends and family

    • projects / hobbies

    • do at least one thing (more is better) to benefit someone else each day

    • see a need, fill a need

Leisure time will be after supper and evening chores are completed, and only if there are no other family plans (check in with mom and dad).

“Do what you have to so you can do what you want to.” from the movie The Great Debaters


After breakfast they still hadn’t said anything but Deanna had a perma-scowl on her face.  So I closed my laptop and asked them if they had any thoughts about what they had read.  More silence from them.  Then finally Jordan spoke up and asked why the change?  I then poured out my heart and my thoughts and my frustrations that have been building for quite some time now.   I shared that our trial run of having an assignment list to complete did not work for our family because things are constantly popping up that take over our days.  And they got very stressed by schedule changes and not being able to complete the list.  I shared how I see that I am doing them a disservice by allowing them a life of leisure and how that is not typical in North America.  Leisure is a small part of the day, not all day or whenever you want it.

I explained I was frustrated and exhausted by always having to be on their case, pushing them into what they should be doing.  I want them to be competent young adults, and with having me pushing them all the time, this would not develop them into competent adults only dependent ones.  They need to be aware and on the look out for what needs to be done, doing it of their own accord, not waiting to be told to do things. 

A few times I was almost in tears because I am so exhausted by having to push.  And when I do push, I get eyes rolling, or the victim attitude, or whatever.  I am so done with it all. 

I think the kids heard and saw my hurt.  Maybe they could see that I am a person too, and that I don’t harp on them for my pleasure.   That they are contributors to this home, this family and to their own life.  At least I hope they did.

The rest of the day went pretty good.  They stayed busy.  We had more discussions about how to proceed with our new ideas/routine.  They started new files with their ON YOUR OWN computer simulation.  They took care of their animals.  They did things I asked them to do without complaining (mostly… there was a slight relapse by Deanna after supper).  Change is hard for anyone.  And I am hoping we can make changes that benefit our family, us as individuals, and our community. 

I asked the kids if they managed to do one thing today that benefited someone else.  Both of them had.  YAY!

After supper we worked together doing some evening chores.  Then they showered and now are enjoying some leisure time.  SO what started out as a bad day has ended on a good note.  Yay. 

I am off to watch Lie to Me and 19 Kids and Counting.   Goodnight.


1.  I read some books by the Nearings many years ago.  I was reminded about them in a newsletter I received today.   I always did like their methodology for time management:

“Helen and Scott were devoted to a lifestyle giving importance to work, on the one hand, and contemplation or play, on the other. Ideally, they aimed at a norm that divided most of a day's waking hours into three blocks of four hours: "bread labor" (work directed toward meeting requirements of food, shelter, clothing, needed tools, and such); civic work (doing something of value for their community); and professional pursuits or recreation (for Scott this was frequently economics research, for Helen it was often music - but they both liked to ski, also). They clearly honored manual work, and viewed it as one aspect of the self-development process that they felt life should be.”


2.  Can you motivate your child to achieve greatness? -- 


Why Chinese Mothers Are Superior - Can a regimen of no playdates, no TV, no computer games and hours of music practice create happy kids? And what happens when they fight back?  --


3.   book to read –>  The Element: How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything

Product Description

From one of the world's leading thinkers and speakers on creativity and self-fulfillment, a breakthrough book about talent, passion, and achievement
The element is the point at which natural talent meets personal passion. When people arrive at the element, they feel most themselves and most inspired and achieve at their highest levels. The Element draws on the stories of a wide range of people, from ex-Beatle Paul McCartney to Matt Groening, creator of The Simpsons; from Meg Ryan to Gillian Lynne, who choreographed the Broadway productions of Cats and The Phantom of the Opera; and from writer Arianna Huffington to renowned physicist Richard Feynman and others, including business leaders and athletes. It explores the components of this new paradigm: The diversity of intelligence, the power of imagination and creativity, and the importance of commitment to our own capabilities.
With a wry sense of humor, Ken Robinson looks at the conditions that enable us to find ourselves in the element and those that stifle that possibility. He shows that age and occupation are no barrier, and that once we have found our path we can help others to do so as well. The Element shows the vital need to enhance creativity and innovation by thinking differently about human resources and imagination. It is also an essential strategy for transforming education, business, and communities to meet the challenges of living and succeeding in the twenty-first century.

skills needed in the 21st Century


Monticello College has a list of skills needed in the 21st century.  I think it is a good list.

skills needed in the 21st Century*:

  • The ability to define problems without a guide.
  • The ability to ask hard questions which challenge prevailing assumptions.
  • The ability to quickly assimilate needed data from masses of irrelevant information.
  • The ability to work in teams without a guide.
  • The ability to work absolutely alone.
  • The ability to persuade others that your course is the right one.
  • The ability to conceptualize and reorganize information into new patterns.
  • The ability to discuss ideas with an eye toward application.
  • The ability to think inductively, deductively and dialectically.
  • The ability to think, speak, and write clearly.
  • The ability to judge what it means to understand something thoroughly.
  • Familiarity with different modes of thought (including quantitative, historical, scientific, and aesthetic).
  • Depth of knowledge in a particular field and how it relates to other fields.
  • The ability to pursue life-long learning.
  • The ability to understand human nature and lead accordingly.
  • The ability to identify needed personal traits and turn them into habits.

        *As outlined in A Thomas Jefferson Education by Oliver DeMille pages 118-123


So how do we develop these skills in our young adults at home?



Brrrrrr!  It is cold outside.  My outdoor thermometer says –32C.  Good thing I don’t have anything I have to do outside today.  But maybe we will try this…


2.  “All things being equal we generally resist change until the pain of making a switch becomes less than the pain of remaining in our current situation.” - Chris Guillebeau


3.  Why Young Entrepreneurs Should Hold Down a Job After College --->


4.  I love all the pizza ideas in the comments section --


5.  I watched this video last night …..

so now it has me pondering the old versus the new covenant.  A friend of mine says it is not the new covenant but the renewed covenant…. but then why is it called a new covenant in scripture?

I found this website that is comparing the two…

Still more reading to be done.


6.  catalogue for personalized gifts --


7.  20 Science Questions

Did you pay attention in elementary school? If so, you should do fine on this science quiz, which uses 20 multiple choice questions to test your knowledge of general science. Kids contributed questions and the selection of incorrect answers for this quiz. Can you make the grade?... Try the quiz


****  time to go annoy my kids some more… they don’t seem to like me lately.  Oh well.

“The Physics of The Quest”


“…I’ve come to believe that there exists in the universe something I call “The Physics of The Quest” – a force of nature governed by laws as real as the laws gravity or momentum. And the rule of Quest Physics maybe goes like this: “If you are brave enough to leave behind everything familiar and comforting (which can be anything from your house to your bitter old resentments) and set out on a truth-seeking journey (either externally or internally), and if you are truly willing to regard everything that happens to you on that journey as a clue, and if you accept everyone you meet along the way as a teacher, and if you are prepared – most of all – to face (and forgive) some very difficult realities about yourself….then truth will not be withheld from you.” Or so I’ve come to believe.”
- Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat Pray Love.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

anyone else feeling a little buried in snow?


spring is near  the deer can be seen wandering around again






A sneaky thief,
It seeks to rob me
Of the joy
That's mine today.

Cleverly, cunningly
It scripts screenplays
Of challenges and pleasures
That tomorrow
May or may not bring.
It whispers fears--
It dangles hopes--
By capturing my thoughts,
Would it consume today?

It's all that's truly before me--
All God has given me grace to bear.
Tomorrow's joys and challenges--
I put them in God's hands,
And I choose to leave them there.

- author unknown to me -

The house of God???


Over here at (, they are asking the question “what is the house God”?  Take a moment to read the article. 












I love how the author ends the article…

The reality for Christians is they are the temple of God and the house of God. So, when you walk into a church building, you are not entering the house of God. Instead, if you are a believer, when you walk in, the house of God is entering the building.

Continue reading on Sunday 101: What is the house of God? - Raleigh Practical Christianity |

good advice…


Lori from THE GENEROUS WIFE writes:

It's incredibly important to hang out with other believers.  Without that we tend to get a bit lost and directionless.  The enemy can pick us off more easily.  I know, sometimes it's very difficult to find a group of believers with which to be family.  I just encourage y'all to keep looking and in the absence of a larger group, invite a believing couple over for dinner or meet weekly with a good friend.  Share, pray and encourage each other.  Don't go it alone.

And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching. Hebrews 10:24-25  NKJV

learning methods…


Dave Black wrote:

The purpose of a seminary, in my opinion, is not to disseminate information. Most of what we learn in lectures can be gotten in one fourth the time by reading books. Now here is a very curious thing. I found that most of my college and seminary professors used the "you sit still and I instill" approach to teaching. We students would sometimes describe the process in less flattering terms: "One end gets numb and the other end gets dumb." The access of knowledge over the past 20 years via the Internet has made strict lecturing redundant in many cases. The classroom, I think, could better be utilized for discussion of what the students have already read prior to coming to class.


The two points I took out of this were:

(this one made me laugh… but I know it is true) - professors used the "you sit still and I instill" approach to teaching. We students would sometimes describe the process in less flattering terms: "One end gets numb and the other end gets dumb."

(I love this idea for learning) - The classroom, I think, could better be utilized for discussion of what the students have already read prior to coming to class.


Alan Knox has a series on his blog called SCRIPTURE AS WE LIVE IT.   It is always interesting to see what verse he picks out and then interprets into how we LIVE it versus what the verse is actually saying.  Alan says:

The purpose of this feature is to get us to think about what Scripture says compared to how we actually live and what our traditions teach. Since I’m very interested in ecclesiology, many of these passages will deal with the church. But I will also include other Scriptures as well. I would love to see alot of interaction on these short posts.


Today’s verse  takes on Colossians 2:20-23. 

This is how Alan presents it on his blog:

If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you why don’t you submit to regulations — “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” (referring to things that all perish as they are used) — according to human precepts and teachings? These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion godliness and asceticism and severity to the body, but and they are of no great value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh. (Colossians 2:20-23 re-mix)


In this format in can be hard to read, so here it is without the strike outs:

This is how we Christians seem to live out this verse:

If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why don’t you submit to regulations — “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” (referring to things that all perish as they are used) — according to human precepts and teachings? These have wisdom in promoting godliness and asceticism and severity to the body,  and they are of  great value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh. (Colossians 2:20-23 re-mix)

This is how the verse reads in the bible:

If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the world, why, as if you were still alive in the world, do you submit to regulations— “Do not handle, Do not taste, Do not touch” (referring to things that all perish as they are used)—according to human precepts and teachings? These have indeed an appearance of wisdom in promoting self-made religion and asceticism and severity to the body, but they are of no value in stopping the indulgence of the flesh.



Makes one think…. how do we live out this scripture?  Hmmmm????

Saturday, January 29, 2011

the heart of God for his children


***this is a list of verses that a friend of mine received about children and their place in the gathering of the church… ***

Please read the attached verses and see God's heart for HIS children down through the ages - and in particular their place in the assembly of the saints.
Prayerfully consider what these verses are teaching - and may we be doers of the Word and not hearers only.
Blessings, N****


Gen. 18:19 For I have chosen him , so that he will direct his children and his household after him to keep the way of the LORD by doing what is right and just, so that the LORD will bring about for Abraham what he has promised him.”

Deut. 4:9  ¶     Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them slip from your heart as long as you live. Teach them to your children and to their children after them.

Deut. 4:10 Remember the day you stood before the LORD your God at Horeb, when he said to me, “Assemble the people before me to hear my words so that they may learn to revere me as long as they live in the land and may teach them to their children.”

Deut. 6:4  ¶     Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.

Deut. 6:5 Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.

Deut. 6:6 These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts.
Deut. 6:7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
Deut. 6:8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.
Deut. 6:9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.

Lev. 10:14 But you and your sons and your daughters may eat the breast that was waved and the thigh that was presented. Eat them in a ceremonially clean place; they have been given to you and your children as your share of the Israelites’ fellowship offerings. Lev. 10:15 The thigh that was presented and the breast that was waved must be brought with the fat portions of the offerings made by fire, to be waved before the LORD as a wave offering. This will be the regular share for you and your children, as the LORD has commanded.”

Deut. 31:12 Assemble the people—men, women and children, and the aliens living in your towns—so they can listen and learn to fear the LORD your God and follow carefully all the words of this law.

Deut. 31:13 Their children, who do not know this law, must hear it and learn to fear the LORD your God as long as you live in the land you are crossing the Jordan to possess.”

Deut. 32:46 he said to them, “Take to heart all the words I have solemnly declared to you this day, so that you may command your children to obey carefully all the words of this law.

Josh. 8:35 There was not a word of all that Moses had commanded that Joshua did not read to the whole assembly of Israel, including the women and children, and the aliens who lived among them.

2Chr. 20:13  All the men of Judah, with their wives and children and little ones, stood there before the LORD.

Ezra 10:1    While Ezra was praying and confessing, weeping and throwing himself down before the house of God, a large crowd of Israelites—men, women and children—gathered around him. They too wept bitterly.

Psa. 8:2     From the lips of children and infants
        you have ordained praise
    because of your enemies,
        to silence the foe and the avenger.

Psa. 34:11  Come, my children, listen to me;
        I will teach you the fear of the LORD.

Psa. 78:4     We will not hide them from their children;
        we will tell the next generation
    the praiseworthy deeds of the LORD,
        his power, and the wonders he has done.

Psa. 78:5     He decreed statutes for Jacob
        and established the law in Israel,
    which he commanded our forefathers
        to teach their children,

Psa. 78:6     so the next generation would know them,
        even the children yet to be born,
        and they in turn would tell their children.

Psa. 90:16     May your deeds be shown to your servants,
        your splendor to their children.

Psa. 102:28 The children of your servants will live in your presence;
        their descendants will be established before you.”

Psa. 112:2  His children will be mighty in the land;
        the generation of the upright will be blessed.

Is. 30:1     “Woe to the obstinate children,”
        declares the LORD, “to those who carry out plans that are not mine, forming an alliance, but not by my Spirit,
        heaping sin upon sin;

Is. 30:9  These are rebellious people, deceitful children,
children unwilling to listen to the LORD’S instruction.

Is. 59:21 “As for me, this is my covenant with them,” says the LORD. “My Spirit, who is on you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will not depart from your mouth, or from the mouths of your children, or from the mouths of their descendants from this time on and forever,” says the LORD.

Joel 2:16     Gather the people,
        consecrate the assembly;
    bring together the elders,
        gather the children,
        those nursing at the breast.
    Let the bridegroom leave his room
        and the bride her chamber.

Matt. 11:25  At that time Jesus said, “I praise you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because you have hidden these things from the wise and learned, and revealed them to little children.

Mark 10:13  People were bringing little children to Jesus to have him touch them, but the disciples rebuked them.

Mark 10:14 When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these.

Mark 10:16 And he took the children in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.

Matt. 21:15 But when the chief priests and the teachers of the law saw the wonderful things he did and the children shouting in the temple area, “Hosanna to the Son of David,” they were indignant.

Matt. 21:16  “Do you hear what these children are saying?” they asked him. “Yes,” replied Jesus, “have you never read, “ ‘From the lips of children and infants you have ordained praise’?”

Matt. 23:37 “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing.

Eph. 6:4  Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.

Col. 3:20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord.

Col. 3:21  Fathers, do not embitter your children, or they will become discouraged.

1Th. 2:7 but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her little children.

1Th. 2:11 For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children,

1Tim. 3:4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him with proper respect.

1Tim. 3:12  A deacon must be the husband of but one wife and must manage his children and his household well.

3John 4 I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth.

Friday, January 28, 2011

I love you… see that proves it!


Okay… one more link!  Deanna is not quite ready yet.


Read this post…

where did this week go?


I can’t believe it is Friday already AND the end of January.  Next week is February!  No seriously it is, go check your calendar.  :o)  How is it that time goes by so fast?  I think I need off the life train for a while, put life on pause for a day or two and chillax.  Wouldn’t that be nice? 

Well onto morning coffee rabbit trails….  what will I find today?


1.  Do you have NAYSAYERS in your life?  Most people do.  Well here are 7 tips on how to handle them.  -


2.  I think I am going to order a copy of this Bible.  It has no section headings, it is not broken down into chapter and verse.  I have been looking for a Bible like this for a long time.

At this link ( you can check out a few samples of what a book/letter in the Bible would look like without all the extras.


3.  Hi Lee, What if your 13 year old daughter  isn’t interested in anything….or so she says. Loves to read but says she’s not interested in reading anything “educational”. Seems uninterested in most things the last year or two. Help? --


4.  Dear Computer Lady,

We have thousands of photograph files saved as .jpg files. We regularly back up these family pictures on to DVD’s. However, in your opinion, will .jpg be a good format to save for 10 and 20 years down the road, or would it be smarter to start converting the pictures to another type with more of a stable future?

read the answer here -


5.  Dear Computer lady.

Just wanted to let you know that the Carbonite Online Back up is worth it’s weight in gold. I have writing two novels and about a dozen short stories and always save them after every update or revision (I thought) After not working on any of my writing for a few weeks I was going to work on one of the novels and it was GONE! Some how I had deleted it when I last worked on it…

read the whole post here --


6.  I need more fiber in my life --


7.  Where were you when the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded on January 28, 1986 at 11:39 a.m.?
You may view the latest post at


8.  Eric at A PILGRIM’S PROGRESS has so many great posts lately…

house church-seeking community -

house church-keeping the family together -

preparing for next sunday -

you can’t even ask a question -

ask a question -

house church-  non-hierarchal leadership --

going to the dogs -


time to go…

Deanna and I need to go through pictures for her to print for her scrapbooking weekend…

                             she is pretty excited!



Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sawyer Glasses


So we went to see our local optometrist yesterday.  Deanna had been complaining for a while that she should go and one day I noticed she holds a book really close to her face when she is reading, so it was time to go get her eyes checked (and Jordan’s too just for good measure).

Jordan has his father’s vision… he can see like a hawk.  He still has trouble with color hue distinction so the optometrist advised Jordan to never become an artist.  ;oP

Deanna on the other hand has inherited my vision.  She has astigmatism and near sightedness.  Her right eye is worse then her left eye.  So I joked with her that she will have to get a pair of “Sawyer glasses” (a character from the TV show LOST).



She didn’t seem to like this idea too much.  LOL!


While I was in with Jordan during his test, she picked out a pair of cute purple glasses.  Her glasses should be available for pick up in 7-10 days, so she should be seeing fine in no time.  She may even enjoy reading more if she isn’t struggling so much to see. 

She is very excited to get glasses.  I should have taken a picture of her in them but none of us thought about it till we were driving home.    Oh well.  :o)

ha ha ha


It could happen to any of us...
This is so funny; I hope you enjoy it.


That's what the kid behind the counter at Taco Bell said to me.
I dug into my pocket and pulled out some lint and two dimes and
something that used to be a Jolly Rancher. Having already handed the kid a five-spot, I started to head back out to the truck to grab some change when the kid with the Elmo hairdo said the hardest thing anyone has ever said to me. He said, "It's OK. I'll just give you the senior
citizen discount."
I turned to see who he was talking to and then heard the sound of
change hitting the counter in front of me. "Only $4.68" he said
I stood there stupefied. I am 56, not even 60 yet? A mere child! Senior citizen?
I took my burrito and walked out to the truck wondering what was wrong
with Elmo. Was he blind? As I sat in the truck, my blood began to
boil. Old? Me?
I'll show him, I thought. I opened the door and headed back inside. I
strode to the counter, and there he was waiting with a smile.
Before I could say a word, he held up something and jingled it in
front of me, like I could be that easily distracted! What am I now? A
"Dude! Can't get too far without your car keys, eh?" I stared with
utter disdain at the keys. I began to rationalize in my mind.
"Leaving keys behind hardly makes a man elderly! It could happen to anyone!"
I turned and headed back to the truck. I slipped the key into the
ignition, but it wouldn't turn. What now? I checked my keys and tried
another. Still nothing.
That's when I noticed the purple beads hanging from my rear view mirror.
I had no purple beads hanging from my rear view mirror.
Then, a few other objects came into focus. The car seat in the back
seat. Happy Meal toys spread all over the floorboard. A partially
eaten doughnut on the dashboard.
Faster than you can say ginkgo biloba, I flew out of the alien vehicle.
Moments later I was speeding out of the parking lot, relieved to
finally be leaving this nightmarish stop in my life. That is when I felt it, deep in the bowels of my stomach: hunger! My stomach growled
and churned, and I reached to grab my burrito, only it was nowhere to
be found.
I swung the truck around, gathered my courage, and strode back into
the restaurant one final time. There Elmo stood, draped in youth and black nail polish. All I could think was, "What is the world coming
All I could say was, "Did I leave my food and drink in here"? At this
point I was ready to ask a Boy Scout to help me back to my vehicle,
and then go straight home and apply for Social Security benefits.
Elmo had no clue. I walked back out to the truck, and suddenly a young
lad came up and tugged on my jeans to get my attention. He was holding up a drink and a bag. His mother explained, "I think you left this in
my truck by mistake."
I took the food and drink from the little boy and sheepishly apologized.
She offered these kind words: "It's OK. My grandfather does stuff like
this all the time."
All of this is to explain how I got a ticket doing 85 in a 40. Yes, I
was racing some punk kid in a Toyota Prius. And no, I told the
officer, I'm not too old to be driving this fast.
As I walked in the front door, my wife met me halfway down the hall. I
handed her a bag of cold food and a $300 speeding ticket. I promptly
sat in my rocking chair and covered up my legs with a blankey.
The good news was I had successfully found my way home..
Pass this on to the other old fogies on your list.
Notice the larger type? That's for those of us who have trouble reading.
P.S.. Save the earth...... It's the only planet with chocolate!!!!!

Can you believe it is Thursday already?



1.  a tip from an online friend about art:

One of my favourite art sites is It is an art community. Message boards, dozens of them, ordered by medium or subject matter. There is a critique area where she could post a piece and have people comment on it's technical aspects. Many of the forums have informal "challenges", where a photo is posted and people will draw/paint their interpretation of it. There are lessons buried in the archives of some threads. Wetcanvas has thousands of artists from all over the world. I can get lost in it for hours :-)




It pushes hard on a spirit like a bag of bricks on a back. Guilt keeps you slow, sometimes unmoving, wrecked.

I’m talking about the guilt that says, “you are a failure; you will never get it together.”

So we move slow, aching all the way, heaped up in our “failure” for not doing all that we should be doing.


3.  Testing???  -

One of the questions I am asked regularly is “How do you know your children are at level with other children their age in the public school system? Do they take standardized tests?”

It is a difficult question to answer because I want to be informative, but gracious. Typically this question is asked by those challenging our choice to homeschool, but occasionally it’s asked by a parent genuinely seeking answers.

My response is something like this–“I do not administer annual standardized testing so I cannot tell you whether or not my children are at level with other children their age in public schools. On the other hand, I also cannot be sure that the public school children are at the same level as my children.”

And then I explain that homeschooling gives me the opportunity to




Dear Serena,

I wanted to ask you a few things. I dove into my Bible and realized that before, I only knew ABOUT Jesus, rather than KNOWING him. His grace is there, unquestionably, but I’m having a hard time getting the knowledge to my heart. Was it a process for you? And how long did it take you before you were able to shake the feelings of complete and total worthlessness? (Because that’s a struggle for me

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“Worthlessness is a lie. Hell is trying to isolate you so that you can be tormented easier. Call out the lie and reject it. Your failure gives Satan words to use against you, but he’s a liar. He’s a liar because Jesus took all of the accusations upon Himself and paid the penalty for them. Satan will do everything he can to get you to forget that. But, God has no recollection of your sin, so don’t live according to something that God doesn’t even consider. The Truth sets you free.

When the accusations come, know that they are against Jesus, not you. That’s why the accusations become a lie. When you are tucked away in Christ, the accusations are about Him and they hold no water. You are hidden away in Him. He took your sin (past, present, future) and nailed it all to the cross so that you could be free. It’s not a freedom so that you can live selfishly. It’s a freedom to grow and become so that you can be used to pour out His Love.”

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6.  Does marriage improve with age? -


7.  one less thing:  perfume –>


8.  Cute card making ideas -


Cupcake Birthday Card

Birthday Card - Use up scraps



Love this quote about teaching (Donald D. Quinn):

If a doctor, lawyer, or dentist had 40 people in his office at one time, all of whom had different needs, and some of whom didn't want to be there and were causing trouble, and the doctor, lawyer, or dentist, without assistance, had to treat them all with professional excellence for nine months, then he might have some conception of the classroom teacher's job. 



What my trips to Ethiopia have taught me:

  • Practical Christian fellowship calls for help when it is needed and not merely when it is asked for.

  • Believers are, and always will be, saints together, regardless of race, nationality, political affiliation, or denomination. Yes, I said denomination.

  • If I want to serve God I must never dash ahead of Him in impetuous enthusiasm nor lag behind Him in double-minded unbelief.

  • Only when I apply the truth to my own life diligently can I prove my Christian discipleship to others, Ethiopians included.

  • I must live sacrificially for others. Only then can I can rightly reflect the one who "though He was rich yet for our sakes became poor so that we through His poverty might become rich."

  • Missionary work is non-stop, 24/7. To call Sunday the "Lord's Day" doesn't mean that the other days belong to me.

  • Spiritual warfare is never easy, and we are likely to get hurt. But the final victory is ours.


11.  Eric Carpenter wants to abolish hierarchical leadership in the church. Here are his reasons. What do you think?


12.  how to make a marriage bed --

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

a blast from the past



farmer stephanie

Stephanie and Jordan

(Stephanie is about 15 or 16 in this picture)

Tuesday, January 25, 2011



10-12 potatoes
3/4 lb. sharp cheese (extra sharp)
1 lb. lasagna noodles, cooked al dente

Cook potatoes and mash. Add salt and pepper. (Do not add milk). Add cheese, cut into small chunks or grated, to potato. Generously grease 9 x 13 inch pan. Place a layer of cooked noodles on the bottom of pan then spread a layer of mashed potatoes mixture and repeat above ending with a layer of noodles on top. Cover with foil and bake for 30-40 minutes at 350 degrees. Taste cheese and potato to see if you want more cheese.


2.  Life is like an onion, you peel off one layer at a time & sometimes you weep.




4.  I used this recipe ( as jumping off point for my idea to bake perogies instead of boiling them.  I baked perogies for supper Monday night (with fried onion and garlic and spices), and they turned out really well.  I think I liked them better this way than the usual method of boiling.


5.  What is your love language?  You can take an assessment here:

Mine was -

Quality Time

In the vernacular of Quality Time, nothing says,"I love you," like full, undivided attention. Being there for this type of person is critical, but really being there--with the TV off, fork and knife down, and all chores and tasks on standby--makes your significant other feel truly special and loved. Distractions, postponed dates, or the failure to listen can be especially hurtful.


6.  by our love, by our love…. -

a snippet from the blog post…

“We are set apart by love. That is how the world knows we are Christians. It’s not by what we do or don’t do. You do not have to have a relationship with Jesus to do “good.” That’s why no matter how much “good” we do in the name of Jesus, none of it amounts to anything if we fail to love. Faith is far more interior. The only thing that matters is how we love. “

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1. Faith is the ability to not panic.
2. If you worry, you didn't pray. If you pray, don't worry.
3. As a child of God, prayer is kind of like calling home every day.
4. Blessed are the flexible, for they shall not be bent out of shape.
5. When we get tangled up in our problems, be still. God wants us to be still so He can untangle the knot.
6. Do the math. Count your blessings.
7. God wants spiritual fruit, not religious nuts.
8. Dear God: I have a problem. It's me.
9. Silence is often misinterpreted, but never misquoted.
10. Laugh every day, it's like inner jogging.
11. The most important things in your home are the people.
12. Growing old is inevitable, growing up is optional.
13. There is no key to happiness. The door is always open.
14. A grudge is a heavy thing to carry.
15. He who dies with the most toys is still dead.
16. We do not remember days, but moments. Life moves too fast, so enjoy your precious moments.
17. Nothing is real to you until you experience it, otherwise it's just hearsay.
18. It's all right to sit on your pity pot every now and again. Just be sure to flush when you are done.
19. Surviving and living your life successfully requires courage. The goals and dreams you're seeking require courage and risk-taking. Learn from the
turtle -- it only makes progress when it sticks out its neck.
20. Be more concerned with your character than your reputation. Your character is what you really are while your reputation is merely what others
think you are.
Some More.....
1. If you're too open minded, your brains will fall out.
2. Age is a very high price to pay for maturity.
3. For every action, there is an equal and opposite government program.
4. No husband has ever been shot while doing the dishes.
5. A balanced diet is a cookie in each hand.
6. Thou shalt not weigh more than thy refrigerator.
7. Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves for they shall never cease to be amused.
8. Beauty's only skin deep, but ugly goes clear to the bone.
9. The truth will stand when the worlds on fire.

Monday, January 24, 2011
















Jesus in Every Book of the Bible

  • In Genesis, Jesus Christ is the seed of the woman.
  • In Exodus, He is the passover lamb.
  • In Leviticus, He is our high priest.
  • In Numbers, He is the pillar of cloud by day and the pillar of fire by night.
  • In Deuteronomy, He is the prophet like unto Moses.
  • In Joshua, He is the captain of our salvation.
  • In Judges, He is our judge and lawgiver.
  • In Ruth, He is our kinsman redeemer.
  • In 1st and 2nd Samuel, He is our trusted prophet.
  • In Kings and Chronicles, He is our reigning king.
  • In Ezra, He is the rebuilder of the broken down walls of human life.
  • In Esther, He is our Mordecai.
  • In Job, He is our ever-living redeemer.
  • In Psalms, He is our shepherd.
  • In Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, He is our wisdom.
  • In the Song of Solomon, He is the loving bridegroom.
  • In Isaiah, He is the prince of peace.
  • In Jeremiah, He is the righteous branch.
  • In Lamentations, He is our weeping prophet.
  • In Ezekiel, He is the wonderful four-faced man.
  • In Daniel, He is the forth man in life's "fiery furnace."
  • In Hosea, He is the faithful husband, forever married to the backslider.
  • In Joel, He is the baptizer with the Holy Ghost and fire.
  • In Amos, He is our burden-bearer.
  • In Obadiah, He is the mighty to save.
  • In Jonah, He is our great foreign missionary.
  • In Micah, He is the messenger of beautiful feet.
  • In Nahum, He is the avenger of God's elect.
  • In Habakkuk, he is God's evangelist, crying, "revive thy work in the midst of the years."
  • In Zephaniah, He is our Saviour.
  • In Haggai, He is the restorer of God's lost heritage.
  • In Zechariah, He is the fountain opened up in the house of David for sin and uncleanness.
  • In Malachi, He is the Sun of Righteousness, rising with healing in His wings.
  • In Matthew, He is King of the Jews.
  • In Mark, He is the Servant.
  • In Luke, He is the Son of Man, feeling what you feel.
  • In John, He is the Son of God.
  • In Acts, He is the Savior of the world.
  • In Romans, He is the righteousness of God.
  • In I Corinthians, He is the Rock that followed Israel.
  • In II Corinthians, He is the Triumphant One, giving victory.
  • In Galatians, He is your liberty; He sets you free.
  • In Ephesians, He is Head of the Church.
  • In Philippians, He is your joy.
  • In Colossians, He is your completeness.
  • In 1st and 2nd Thessalonians, He is your hope.
  • In I Timothy, He is your faith.
  • In II Timothy, He is your stability.
  • In Philemon, He is your Benefactor.
  • In Titus, He is truth.
  • In Hebrews, He is your perfection.
  • In James, he is the Power behind your faith.
  • In I Peter, He is your example.
  • In II Peter, He is your purity.
  • In I John, He is your life.
  • In II John, He is your pattern.
  • In III John, He is your motivation.
  • In Jude, He is the foundation of your faith.
  • In Revelation, He is your coming King.
    • He is the First and Last, the Beginning and the End!
    • He is the keeper of Creation and the Creator of all!
    • He is the Architect of the universe and the Manager of all times.
    • He always was, He always is, and He always will be...
    • Unmoved, Unchanged, Undefeated, and never Undone!
    • He was bruised and brought healing!
    • He was pierced and eased pain!
    • He was persecuted and brought freedom!
    • He was dead and brought life!
    • He is risen and brings power!
    • He reigns and brings Peace!
    • The world can't understand him,
    • The armies can't defeat Him,
    • The schools can't explain Him, and
    • The leaders can't ignore Him.
    • Herod couldn't kill Him,
    • The Pharisees couldn't confuse Him, and
    • The people couldn't hold Him!
    • Nero couldn't crush Him,
    • Hitler couldn't silence Him,
    • The New Age can't replace Him, and
    • Donahue can't explain Him away!
    • He is light, love, longevity, and Lord.
    • He is goodness, Kindness, Gentleness, and God.
    • He is Holy, Righteous, mighty, powerful, and pure.
    • His ways are right, His word is eternal,
    • His will is unchanging, and His mind is on me.
    • He is my Redeemer, He is my Savior,
    • He is my guide, and He is my peace!
    • He is my Joy, He is my comfort,
    • He is my Lord, and He rules my life!
  • I serve Him because His bond is love,
  • His burden is light, and His goal for me is abundant life.
  • I follow Him because He is:
    • the wisdom of the wise,
    • the Power of the powerful,
    • the Ancient of days,
    • the Ruler of rulers,
    • the Leader of leaders,
    • the Overseer of the overcomers, and
    • the Sovereign Lord of all that was and is and is to come.
    And if that seems impressive to you, try this for size:
  • His goal is a relationship with ME!
  • He will never leave me,
    • never forsake me,
    • never mislead me,
    • never forget me,
    • never overlook me,
    • and never cancel my appointment in His appointment book!
  • When I fall, He lifts me up!
  • When I fail, He forgives!
  • When I am weak, He is strong!
  • When I am lost, He is the way!
  • When I am afraid, He is my courage!
  • When I stumble, He steadies me!
  • When I am hurt, He heals me!
  • When I am broken, He mends me!
  • When I am blind, He leads me!
  • When I am hungry, He feeds me!
  • When I face trials, He is with me!
  • When I face persecution, He shields me!
  • When I face problems, He comforts me!
  • When I face loss, He provides for me!
  • When I face Death, He carries me Home!
  • He is everything for everybody, everywhere, every time, and every way.
  • He is God, He is faithful.
  • I am His, and He is mine!
  • My Father in heaven can whip the father of this world!
    So, if you're wondering why I feel so secure, understand this . . .

    GOD said it and that settles it.

  • God is in control, I am on His side, and that means all is well with my soul.
  • Everyday is a blessing because GOD IS!

monday, monday….


1.  I love my dishtowels that hang in my kitchen, you know the ones that will button on so they don’t constantly fall on the floor when kids use them.  Well mine are getting pretty sad looking, starting to fall apart.  So a newsletter I receive had some ideas to try…


2.  A math game to try (well if the idea of it ever stops hurting my brain, I can’t make sense of the instructions this morning with my brain fog and lack of coffee).  The colourful tiles make me smile, so I am guessing it would be good, right?


3.  Oh my goodness, I so want to have one of these…. soon!



4.  Hippocrates said, “Let your food be your medicine.”  --  one family’s story of mental illness, chronic pain and nutrition --


5.  “Scientists have found that eating high fiber bran significantly reduces both cardiovascular deaths from heart attack and stroke, plus the total deaths in diabetic women.”  --


6.  12 Ways I've Found to Strew Around My Home

On an unschooling yahoo list I'm on, we've been talking about the various ways to strew.  That got me thinking of all the way's I've found to do this.  I thought I'd summarize them here.  There are more ways than these, but this is what has proved to be effective in our family life:


7.  after the running, the lullaby….

“Suddenly curious, I look up the word deadline. I know what it means, of course. But I want the roots. The formerly-meant meaning.
A boundary around a military prison beyond which a prisoner could not venture without risk of being shot by the guards.”


8.    Sunday 101: What is church?  ---


9.  A banging wall  (what would the neighbors think???)  -



10.  personalized children’s art -



11.  Messy Masterpiece

On Monday I mentioned that Charlotte and I took some time this past weekend to make an art piece for her room. I'm back to show you the fruits of our her labor…..   



12.  "If you always do what you’ve always done, you’re going to get what you always got." - Anthony Robbins


13.  Are you guilty of these marriage mistakes?  --


14.  Good Intentions

In life, people say and do stupid things. I have learned, however, that offensive or hurtful words and actions are usually not intended to be so. They are generally poorly formed thoughts or misunderstood actions. …


15.  Journaling, a family habit --


16.  Food for thought…. – what does marriage mean?  what is the point of marriage?  -


17.  10 ways to live below your potential  --


18.  Q & A: Billy Graham on Aging, Regrets, and Evangelicals --


19.  The Slow-Photography Movement, What is the point of taking pictures?  --


20.  The 11 Kinds of Insomnia  ---,,20188397,00.html?pkw=outbrain-ha


21.  10 Food Rules for Pain Patients --

The fibro-food connection,,20309924,00.html?xid=exclusives-link


gotta go… talking to Stephanie….   :o)

boys being boys





Sunday, January 23, 2011

Deanna doing her chores









Jordan has a new friend….



















The name he came with is Rhinestone but Jordan may change it.  He bought him at the auction yesterday.    He is a 12 year old quarter horse gelding that has been used lots in the mountains. 



A Sunday school teacher was telling her class the story of the Good Samaritan.  She asked the class, "If you saw a person lying on the roadside,
all wounded and bleeding, what would you do?" A thoughtful little girl broke the silence, "I think I'd throw up."

A Sunday school teacher asked, "Johnny, do you think Noah did a lot of fishing when he was on the Ark ?"
"No," replied Johnny.  "How could he, with just two worms?"

A Sunday school teacher decided to have her young class memorize one of the most quoted passages in the Bible - Psalm 23.  She gave the youngsters a month to learn the chapter.
Little Rick was excited about the task - but he just couldn't remember the Psalm.  After much practice, he could barely get past the first line. On the day that the kids were scheduled to recite Psalm 23 in front of the congregation, Ricky was very nervous. When it was his turn, he stepped up to the microphone and said proudly, "The Lord is my Shepherd, and that's all I need to know."

The preacher's 5 year-old daughter noticed that her father always paused and bowed his head for a moment before starting his sermon.  One day, she asked him why.
"Well, Honey," he began, proud that his daughter was so observant of his messages.  "I'm asking the Lord to help me preach a good sermon."
"How come He doesn't answer it?" she asked.

A Rabbi said to a precocious six-year-old boy, "So your mother says
your prayers for you each night?  That's very commendable. What does she say?"
The little boy replied, "Thank God he's in bed!"

When my daughter, Kelly, said her bedtime prayers, she would bless every family member, every friend, and every animal (current and past).
For several weeks, after we had finished the nightly prayer, Kell
y would say,"And all girls."  This soon became part of her nightly routine, to include
this closing.  My curiosity got the best of me and I asked her, "Kell
y, why do you always add the part about all girls?"  Her response, "Because everybody else always finishes their prayers by saying 'All Men!"

Little Johnny and his family were having Sunday dinner at his grandmother's house.  Everyone was seated around the table as the food
was being served.  When Little Johnny received his plate, he started eating right away.
"Johnny!  Please wait until we say our prayer." said his mother.  "I don't need to," the boy replied.
"Of course, you do" his mother insisted.  "We always say a prayer before eating at our house."
"That's at our house." Johnny explained.  "But this is Grandma's house, and she knows how to cook."

sunday morning coffee time


1.  WHY I TRAVEL INSTEAD OF STUDY – “I felt the pressure already a few months after graduating high school – you know that pressure, the pressure everyone gives you ‘to do something with your life’.” ….


2.  Hmmmm…. what fieldtrips could we take???


3.  what program church can learn from house church -


4.  handy tips for those trying to comfort the grieving --


5.  Seedlife Network  --

What do we do?

There is a lot of flexibility in what we do.  Most of the time we gather there are 3 main components to the gathering.  We eat together, we spend time connecting with God through different expression of worship or meditation.  Most often we study the bible together but we look for truth and meaning in everything from movies, documentaries, sermons, conference video and books.    We highly value participation from everyone.

Each church has a lot of flexiblity in how they do things as long as they remain intentionally simple and faithful to Christ with the scriptures as their guide.”


6.  “Family faces are magic mirrors. Looking at people who belong to us, we see the past, present, and future.” -Gail Lumet Buckley


7.  the beauty of you --


8.  ***I can’t wait to get this book!  It should be in this week.***

May I just say… you are going to love One Thousand Gifts and this study.

This is the first video, where we chat with Ann for just a few minutes about her, her family and how One Thousand Gifts came to be. The weekly chapter discussions will be much longer (10-15 minutes in length).”


9.  8 ways you can eat to fight fatigue -  Tired of being tired? Healthy foods can help. Here's how you can fight fatigue through good nutrition.




11. from an old email…

Wow - I love this site - good questions.

Here are some of the latest questions:

How do you find the strength to do what you know in your heart is right?

What makes you proud?

What is the greatest truth?

Is there ever a time when giving up makes sense?

What makes a person beautiful?


I'm going to print some of these off and have them in a binder for discussion starters for when our Japanese Student is here.  (At the meeting last week, they suggest talking a lot with her.  Not sure if she will enter in, but I think a specific discussion time will be great for all of us).

Use to journal or have a discussion.

Have you had a great discussion lately?


12.    trash, the dollar store and me --




image image