Sunday, February 24, 2008

The Importance of Hospitality

In our fast paced world, we sometimes neglect ordinances given to us by God. In an effort to protect our family time we close our door to preserve what small amount of time we have together. Our family is to be our first priority, but not at the expense of serving others in the name of God. This is a ministry our whole family can do together.

I recently found this blog entry on hospitality over at The Purple Cellar:

Romans 12:13: "Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality" and on 1 Peter 4:9: "Show hospitality to one another without grumbling." Susie says that when seeking to have a hospitable heart, there are four primary things to keep in mind:

1) Hospitality isn't based on having the "right" house.
2) Hospitality isn't always convenient.
3) Hospitality isn't always comfortable.
4) Hospitality is always about serving others.

Please go over and read the entire entry here, it is thought provoking. We can all think about a time when we were welcomed into someone's home for a simple meal, but much love. We should all follow that example.
Strive to use your time and home to serve the Lord in this important ministry.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Family Day

What a wonderful busy day. We started out this morning with a trip to my parents to pick up boxes. In addition to being able to see my dad and mom, we were able to see my two nephews. I was so excited to see them, I have not seen them since Christmas Eve 2006. As soon as I heard they would be there I charged my camera battery.

Dallas and Maverick

I took a lot of pictures of the cousins. I might have taken too many (see Bekah).

After we left my parents, we went to church to clean. Then we came home and fixed lunch for my father and mother-in-law. They came to bring us invitations for my sister-in-laws baby shower. I love my father and mother-in-law so much. They have always treated me very well.

Nana and Abby looking at pictures.

Bekah playing jacks.

Rachel watching the rain.

Today was a wonderful day with our extended family. As a bonus we had a nice little rain. These days are just filled with so many memories to look back on during a busy life. God is so good to bless us with family to share our lives with.

Friday, February 22, 2008

This week's deals


We purchased the following:

2 packs Huggies newborns (For my nephew who will be arriving in less than two months)
2 packs of Ziploc bags
4 packs Ziploc bowls
1 Venus razor
1 pack Scalpicin
5 tubes of toothpaste
2 cans Glade airfreshener

Paid OOP $18.33
Received $31.00 in Extra Bucks
Receipt says I saved $103.49


We purchased:

1 Mascara
1 Bronzer
1 Foundation
1 Finishing Powder

Paid OOP $4.05
Receipt states I saved $20.48

So the bottom line:

Spent $22.38
Saved $123.97
Still have $31.00 to spend

Woo Hoo!!!

Thank you Money Saving Mom and Thrifty Florida Mama for all your tips.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Please pray for us

I am sorry posts have been slow this week. We have had a lot of things going on this week. Last Tuesday we found out we need to move as soon as possible for safety reasons. So we have been looking for new housing.
We have a lead on an apartment, but we are praying that God would provide us with a house.
Please keep our family in your prayers.

Monday, February 18, 2008

Keep the Peace

As wives we have the privilege to set the tone and pace in our homes. We can either live frantically or slow down and take things as they come.

I naturally tend to be a "fly by the seat of my pants" kind of girl, but I am realizing (I'm a bit slow) it makes our home stressful. When I stress, my kids stress and then when Richard comes home he feels the stress. Not good. I need to prayerfully plan out my days, so I bring stability into our home and not chaos.

I want to have a loving and peaceful home. Where is Jewels when you need a great example of peaceful living?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Valentine's Day Recap

Our Valentine's Day Dinner

Well, we had our annual Valentine's dinner. As I mentioned before we invited our single friends over to share the night with us. We ended up with 6 friends joining us. Our Valentine's dinner was never so lively, Pete can make anybody laugh I think. After dinner we played a couple of games and did the mailbox. I gave my girls an hour and a half earlier in the day to make all the cards and they still ran out of time. But our guests had plenty of cards to take home.
There were a few things I learned on Valentine's Day this year:

1. Simpler is better. I started off wanting to make an elaborate meal for our friends and realized quickly that it was not going to happen. Too much stress.

2. It is hard to make a meal that does not include garlic or onions.

3. I thought I was serving others, but God used our friends to totally bless me. As we sat around the table just talking, I just kind of sat back and looked around and thanked God for all our friends.

Thank you Pete, Elisabeth, Amy, Grace, Julie and Ricky for making our day so special. We love you all.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

For My Sweet Valentine.

My Dearest Richard,

I want to say Happy Valentine's Day to you and thank you for being such an amazing husband. I honestly could not imagine my life without you.
I am putting your Valentine on my blog, so everybody will know I love you. Plus I can do this better than draw you a picture. We both know you are the artistic one and I am the social one.

Richard, I love you because:

  • You are my best friend (I am happy just hanging around with you).
  • You have given me 4 beautiful girls.
  • You make me laugh.
  • You protect me from others and from myself.
  • You still give me chills when you kiss me.
  • You chose me to be your wife.
  • You comfort me when I am sad.
  • You constantly challenge me to be a better follower of Christ.
  • You are a man of integrity.
There are so many other reasons I love you, but this is enough for the world to see.
I love you more and more each day. I truly thank you for making my life so complete.

My Refuge and My Fortress

About 6 and 1/2 years ago I was reading through the Psalms for my quiet time. Just after 9/11 I read Psalm 91 and it truly gave me comfort through a time when our world was radically changing. After the first reading of Psalm 91, I kept reading it over and over to just remind myself of God's power, strength and sovereignty. It was a great help to me.
Once again I find myself turning to Psalm 91 in times of anxiety, going to remind myself of God's goodness and love. I am so thankful that God left His Word here to teach us, reproof us, correct us and even comfort us in times of trouble.
This morning as I was teaching school my husband walked in and said, "You need to read Peril in Valley of Vision today, it will help you." So later as he was teaching his part of school I read it and it did speak to my heart. As a matter of fact I read it several times, just to take it all in. I wanted to share this wonderful prayer with you.



I am sadly harassed by doubts, fears, unbelief, in a felt spiritual darkness.

My heart is full of evil surmisings and disquietude, and I cannot act faith at all.

My heavenly pilot has disappeared, and I have lost my hold on the rock of ages;

I sink in deep mire beneath storms and waves, in horror and distress unutterable.

Help me, O Lord, to throw myself absolutely and wholly on thee, for better, for worse, without comfort, and all but hopeless.

Give me peace of soul, confidence, enlargement of mind, morning joy that comes after night heaviness;

Water my soul richly with divine blessings;

Grant that I may welcome thy humbling in private so that I might enjoy thee in public;

Give me a mountain top as high as the valley is low.

Thy grace can melt the worst sinner, and I am as vile as he;

Yet thou hast made me a monument of mercy, a trophy of redeeming power; in my distress let me not forget this.

All-wise God, Thy never-failing providence orders every event.

Sweetens every fear, reveals evil’s presence lurking in seeming good, brings real good out of seeming evil, makes unsatisfactory what I set my heart upon, to show me what a short-sighted creature I am, and to teach me to live by faith upon thy blessed self.

Out of my sorrow and night give me the name Naphtali - “satisfied with favour” - help me to love thee as thy child, and to walk worthy of my heavenly pedigree.

- Valley of Vision Page 184

May God continue to work in my life as He sees fit.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Our Valentine's Day Celebration

We try to make Valentine's Day fun for our girls. Usually for art that day I have the girls make Valentine's Day cards for each other. We have a Valentine's Day mailbox (an old shoe box wrapped in wrapping paper) we have been using for about 5 years now. It is in pretty bad shape, but my girls get so excited when it comes out. We put all Valentines in there, even the ones from Grandma and Papa that come in the mail.

On Valentine's night the girls and I make a simple dinner and decorate the table. The last two years we have had enchiladas, rice, beans and salad. I usually buy Valentine's Day paper goods, so the table looks really festive and we have more time after dinner to enjoy our Valentine's. Now, for the most important thing (as far as my girls are concerned) we put conversation hearts all over the table and after dinner we read them and eat them. It is a great family time for us.
After dinner is all cleaned up from we sit down and open all our cards. Dad usually makes each of his girls a card. Handmade cards are so special and meaningful.

This is the way we celebrate Valentine's Day.

This year my husband and I decided to change things around. We have invited single friends to join us for our Valentine's celebration. We want our girls to look around and see who they can serve and this is a wonderful way our whole family can serve those who are single. My girls are so excited, they asked if they can make Valentine's for our guests today. It will be an interesting dinner, so far we have two single guys coming. My husband will be happy I am sure to have other men at the table. It will be a change for our girls who are usually just silly at dinner, we will be able to work on those table manners we have been working through in school.

Monday, February 11, 2008

A Good Prayer Life

I need to get back on track talking about being a godly wife. I believe the one area that I have always struggled with is a good prayer life. I struggle because I have no problem going to God when things are bad, but when things are going good I am not as faithful. Then guilt sets in and I have a whole new reason not to humble myself before God.
In our ladies' Bible study last month we read a chapter on prayer, that really challenged me. We are going through, Disciplines of a Godly Woman by Barbara Hughes. Here is a quote from the chapter:

Apart from the well-known scriptural calls to prayer, there are two great human reasons why we ought to pray.
The first is found in the fact that prayer is the source of power for growth and perseverance in our spiritual lives.
...The second reason is that prayer bends our wills to God's will, which is what submitting our lives is all about.

The second reason is what really speaks to me, I want to be in God's will always. I therefore need to be in prayer constantly. God knows I am a sinner and knows I will fail, but He also knows He sent His one and only Son to save me from myself.

How does this affect my marriage? When I am not living in God's will I am trying to live in my own will, which is saturated with selfishness, pride and jealousy. All elements which make a bad marriage. However, when I am praying to God constantly He is able to work in my life as I bow my will to His. I need to change daily and only God can make my hard heart, soft and pliable again.

When I am living in God's will, I am able to love my husband selflessly without any expectations of what I may get. Thank you God.

Friday, February 8, 2008


I want to let you know I have not fallen off the end of the earth. I have been taking care of our sick children. I hope to be back tomorrow.


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

A Beautiful Day

Here is how our morning started, quiet and relaxing. The two older girls were working on homework and the two smaller ones were playing quietly together. Wow.

Here is a close up of my two big girls. Notice my Hannah has her little legs crossed.

Remember the free M & M's a few weeks ago at CVS, I am making them work for me now. I am using them as little rewards for good listening in school. I don't give out very many, just at key times to keep their attention. They are all very excited when they see the M&M's come out.

In an effort to use what I have on hand, I am using this bucket that has been on top of my refrigerator for three years to store the M&M's for school.

And this was our lunch today. I am not usually a mac and cheese person, but today it was all good.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Super Tuesday

Well today is almost over, and all of the results are coming in. You are either very happy right now or very disappointed with the results. No matter who you voted for, we must keep this all in perspective. God is still sovereign today as He always is. We can't let our pride in a candidate cloud our eternal vision. We must continue to pray for our nation, pray for those who are running for office and those who are already in office. Pray that the leaders would be saved and that our country will turn their hearts toward God. We can't put our hope in a candidate to change our country, only God can change man's heart.
As we look to the future we must be in constant prayer for our country and do our part and vote.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Happy Anniversary

Today is a very special day for two of our friends, Ed and Monique. They are celebrating their 19th wedding anniversary. My husband has known Ed since they were young boys and I met Monique right before they were married in 1989. God has truly blessed us with Ed and Monique. Our lives always seem to follow similar paths; from getting married the same year, and attending the same church for many years, to living near each other twice. Ed and Richard even graduated from the same seminary. We have enjoyed many family vacations together with all our children (7 children in all).
It is such a joy to watch how God has worked in their lives.
Ed and Monique, may God continue to bless you. We love you both.

Friday, February 1, 2008


The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain. She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life. -Psalm 31:11-12

Our husbands need to be able to trust us in every area of life. They need to trust us as we raise our children, in the running of our home and in our finances, to name a few. We cannot be too careful when it comes to our husband's trust.
As the above verse states, "The heart of her husband trusts in her...", we need to think about that as we make every decision. Are we going against what our husband would want? Are we breaking his trust?

Let's look at this practically.

In raising our children, we are usually with them more than our husbands are. We need to teach them diligently about God's word. We also need to teach them obedience. If we fail to teach them correctly they will suffer many consequences and they will also bring shame to their parents.

In running our home, we need to make sure we keep it presentable. If our husband needs to bring someone home, he should feel comfortable about calling a half hour before to let us know. We also need to make sure we provide for all the needs of our family: food, clothes, toiletries, etc.

In our finances, we need to be very careful that we are not being wasteful or building debt. Our husbands work very hard to provide for our needs, and we should honor them by doing the best we can with the money they have earned. We need to be frugal and wise.

Our husbands should be able to trust us in their hearts with no doubts. We will make mistakes, but we must humbly admit to them so we do not lose their trust.