Friday, April 7, 2017

When feeling a disconnect to the Lord?

Just the past few weeks, I have lost some of my zeal and "hearing" from the Lord.  When I spend time with my Sweet Savior, pages are filled with insights and prayers for the various promptings from the Holy Spirit.  Currently, I have worked a few more hours and been uncertain in our future ministry.

I recently went to my MOPS leadership meeting.  During our prayer time, I asked for spiritual revival and not the recent dryness.  Thankfully, I came home and the Holy Spirit gently reminded me of two things.
1) Time with Jesus needs to have His Words center.  I am doing a great Lent study, but it is just a little word or action of Jesus passion week journey.  To hear from the Lord, I need to read His Words not just devotions about His word.

2) Lack of Community. Not having our Friday Life group is another reason for the lack of joy when encouraging and serving together. I need one-another.  God made us want to be in community.

Understanding these two missing elements, allowed me to make changes.  Up on the Butte today,  this picture shows me doing a plank.  Would I do them by myself in the dirt? Nope.  I needed TWO friends today to push me.  We even did a sprint after going up and down and up and down the Butte.  I function more completely and at my fullest potential when I am with others who will spur me on to Love and Good Works.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

28 Day Challenge: Day 3 & 4

Day 3:  Becoming Our Mothers
Truth:  What are two things you hope your kids will talk about as adults when they describe their memories of you?

I want them to see Jesus.  That she made mistakes but leaned on His strength.  That their mom would love them right where they were.  She modeled freedom in Christ because she had it to give.  She was spontaneous and did what she could to have family fun (even if it was forced).  She loved creation because it reflected her Creator.



Day 4:  Sister Courage.
Dare:  Start a conversation with a stranger who would normally make you uncomfortable.  (That will be hard to find, but I am intimidated by pretty people.)  Well, I engaged in a conversation with the checker.  It was good.  I usually try to meet the same checker.  So, she was "new to me".


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

28 Day Challenge

11/28/16
Day 1:  Truth- In what ways do you feel out of control in your life?
Right now, it is a crazy time.  It is a valley time.  Nothing is certain except God's Word and His Character.  I have my health, my family, friends. However, nothing is permanent and even my husband's job is in transition.  We are a very active family, wanting to impact this community and be a light.  But, I have no idea if we will be in our home in the next two months or still walking through the unknown.  God is faithful.  But, this control person has no control but to cling to the ROCK who is stable.

11/29/16
Day 2:  Blessing the Night
Dare:  Go outside at night and count 100 stars.  Pray when you see the brightest star!  The person who wrote this challenge had NO IDEA that it would be -2 below 0 and with a wind chill of -17.  Ugh.  But, it was STUNNING!  I counted by 10's. My prayer was that that God's Will Be done on Earth.  Added blessing of square shaped crystals on the stairs and frozen eyelashes (my favorite).  Keep hot and steaming.  Thanks Mellissa.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Encounter God: Groups, Books, Mountains and People!

Each week, our family participates in a Life Group.  It has changed and morphed over the years with new people and different studies.  However, the one thing that stays the same is that I am richer because of it.

Just yesterday, I had the ah ha moment when I realized that all the good things that Christ did on Earth I get the credit as if I did them.  Not only did He fulfill the punishment of my sin and God's wrath was taken out on Him for my disobedience, but His PERFECT goodness and fulfillment of God's law was added to me.  WHOA!

Often I leave the group with a new movie to watch or a book recommendation.  Yesterday it was Valley of Vision.
I found a pdf on a church web page and found a part of an amazing prayer.

I am well pleased with Your will, whatever it is or should be in all respects.  And if you bid me decide for myself in any affair, I would refer all to You.  For You are infinitely wise and cannot do amiss as I am in danger of doing.  I rejoice to think that all things are at Your disposal and it delights me to leave them there.  

Amen!


Life group continues, as I got to spend some time with Melody enjoying skiing for the first time this year. Surrounded by mountains, and running into two other outdoor friends, I can trust in the LORD Psalm 125

Great break doing puzzles and getting ready for Jesus birthday!
If we don't have snow, at least I can do a snow scene

Where  is Max?

Willow watching me enter the crawl space.  She can't be far from me at any time.   




Monday, November 21, 2016

My thankful list

My Thankful list...

I do want to proclaim how much Jesus has done for me.  Reading about how Jesus healed a man tormented by many afflictions this morning, I was moved by the response that he went and told the CITY what God has done.  So, here is a little sample of the transformation God has done in me.

Thank you Lord, that I am healed both from the sickness of sin, but the pain of abandonment. I am engraved in the palm of His hands.  Never forsaken.

I am no longer live under the guise of a "people pleasing" person who finds her fulfillment of what others say about me. No longer bound by people-praise; however, I can find freedom in walking with a satisfying relationship with You, my Father.

I no longer tossed to and fro by relationship with men who can no longer fulfill my needs or being addicted to wrong relationships.  But, I have a healthy and vibrant relationship with James (almost 19 years).

I have been healed from the overwhelming cycle of food obsession and eating disorder.  Always trying to make my body "perfect" to gain control and master over something.  To be loved and to feel complete in Him.  He's my all in all.  I am FREE!   God has the reigns and I can trust Him in that overwhelming mental area.

I am a free women in regards to explosive anger!  I don't have to shout to be a powerful women.  I can trust and not bully my children.  The freedom of being a changed women, means I need to daily walk with Him. I am not alone with the Holy Spirit being my counselor.  I am transformed!

I'm free from being a victim.  I no longer need to drown my sorrow in substances that kill. I am free from my sexual abuse and can love those who hurt me. I am truly JOYFUL!

I am pure and holy and live a free-unchained life because of Jesus death.

So that even the most selfish decision I made, God took that evil and brought me to Himself.

To be Loved
To be free
to shine for Him!

That is what He did.  He took my brokenness and made me beautiful.  That is what I am thankful for this year.


Saturday, June 25, 2016

Tapestry of Grace INCREASES in value throughout the years!

After 8 years of using Tapestry of Grace, I am so thrilled that I chose this classical education and curriculum for my family.  It has been a perfect fit because it is SO FLEXIBLE to work in any situation.  I will use the life of our children to try to accurately paint the picture for you to see this amazing curriculum.

STARTING OUT:  ages 3, 5, & 7 LG
As a newer homeschool mom, I also had young kids being raised in a foreign country of South Africa.  One destructive diaper girl, and two learners.  I didn't want to use two different year plans with a different company (because they were far apart in their knowledge, that I had to select two different programs).  I LOVED having my kids learn the same things at different levels.  One of the key values that bring our homeschool under one roof (and allows me to not be overwhelmed with too many read alouds).  Also, since I was now schooling a bouncy boy, I needed something with more hands on interactive learning.  Tapestry is FULL of activities that work and are not just useless fill in the worksheets that are just a waste of paper and time.  Since, I still had a toddler and needed to teach when we could (nap times), a co-op was not in my ability to execute.  I needed time to maintain bodily functions.


On the MOVE:  4, 6, 8 Lower Grammar (LG)
Tapestry of Grace was the perfect fit for our traveling missionary family in the USA.  Since most of the weeks there are recommendations for field trips and experimental learning.  We enjoyed not only studying about the Native Americans, but we went to the National Museum of the American Indian in Washington DC. We took along the read alouds and had some books and used a journal for the expanded learning.  We could easily add on books from the local library.  In later years, the digital version also was EXTREMELY handy for asking questions at coffee shops and other places while traveling on my IPHONE.

NEEDING OTHERS:  5, 7, 9 LG & Upper Grammar (UG)
God brought together four families in South Africa to have an interactive and varied co-op.  We mostly had all Lower Grammar (LG) and Upper Grammar (UG) students with a few babies in arms. This South African group of talented ladies transformed the mere suggestions into fantastical lessons of learning.  We had Asian Night, Medieval Feast, and Dutch Shadow Puppets with sound effects.  Each week we had shared teaching responsibility and deep friendships from one another.

Transitions:  6, 8, 10  LG/UG
My children didn't follow the normal learning curve, so I really appreciated that it is EASY to go up or even down on the reading levels without the pressure from the other students.  So, each week you can adjust the reading level or amount because Tapestry has the 4 levels of learning.  I remember that even on busy weeks, I can edit the weeks to just the basics if we had too much going on but they kept on learning.

Shakey Middle School:  7, 9, 11 LG/UG/Dialectic (D)
Going into a new level, I was unprepared for the easy of transition into the middle school and more discussion based learning.  I loved having the weekly conversation of "What did you learn?" and allowing the older student to bridge the learning of other cultures into "what should I believe?" It was crazy to dive into a section of Tapestry that I never needed but found out that I loved the History and Literature discussion questions.  Surprisingly, the younger students would often pipe up in the discussion because they were studying the same topic.

Added the first High School student 10, 12, 14 UG/D/Rhetoric (RH)
Adding the scary Rhetoric (high school level), gave me even MORE appreciation for all those teaching notes.  I was able to lead a discussion with the co-op with high schoolers without me reading the books at all.  Also, we took advantage of the Tapestry University on-line writing class to add another element that I hadn't used before.  We were active in a co-op,  we had the older kids join in during the dramas, and helped teach the younger students.

This Past Year:  11, 13, 15 D/RH
In the summer, I took a Tapestry University class called Teacher Training Online on teaching Literature (I am a math brain).  It was such an encouraging class that included a yearlong dialogue with the teacher during the tough years of Tapestry year 2 (medieval literature including Paradise Lost, Dante's Inferno, and Shakespeare).  I felt equipped and loved my three students experience reading these books.


Overall, I appreciate most that Tapestry exposes the students to real life situations and books from all different worldviews.  It doesn't avoid "unchristian" like attitudes, but allows the transparent discussion to evaluate and discern truth.  I love having one intense year in Ancient History including the Bible.  There is much more to love in this program, but I find that as my children grow, the value INCREASES as more of the curriculum is utilized.  I would choose Tapestry again and hope you find the value in this spectacular program.  






Sunday, April 3, 2016

Fuel for the Hike

Hiking Snack Recipes

Nutty Balls

1 c powdered sugar 1 ½ c oats
1 c peanut butter 1 c granola
⅓ c milk 1 c chocolate chips
1 tsp vanilla
*optional add-ins include raisins, craisins, coconut, sunflower seeds, etc.

Directions:

In large bowl mix in order given, use hands if needed. Roll into 1 inch balls, place on waxed paper until set.
Store in refrigerator.

5 Ingredient Granola Bars


2 c quick oats
1 cup almond butter                1/2 cup sliced almonds 1/2 cup mini chocolate chips 1/4 cup honey Optional: salt and cinnamon, to taste
Directions:
  Combine the oats, almond butter, almonds, chocolate chips and honey in a medium size bowl. Stir until well combined. Add more honey if needed and salt and cinnamon, to taste.
  Line a 8x8 pan with parchment paper, allowing the paper to fall over the edges. Press the oat mixture into the pan.
 Place in the freezer for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until firm. Remove paper from pan and then cut the large square in half. Then cut each half into 6 rectangles. Wrap bars individually with parchment paper or plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator or freezer.

  Feel free to substitute the chocolate chips for dried cranberries. You may also use peanut butter and different nuts such as peanut or cashews. You can also add in: 1/8 cup flax seed meal, 1/8 cup chia seeds, 1/8 cup sunflower seeds. Add a Tablespoon more honey for each addition.