Gratituesday: My 100th Post!

According to my dashboard, this is my 100th blog post!  Wow — how did that happen?  And to think, I had virtually no idea that the blogging community even existed six months ago.  Crazy, I know.  This blogging thing?  I absolutely love it.  And this Gratituesday thing?  It is necessary.  In all circumstances.   

In honor of my 100th post, here’s what I’m grateful for tonight.

  • Inspiring blogs that gave me the push to begin my own addiction, well… yes, addiction.
  • Talented friends who got my blog up and running.
  • A place to collect and record my thoughts.
  • Incredible readers who have become sincere friends through our blogs.
  • A husband who encourages this outlet (and everything else I get myself into!)
  • Patient children who wait “one more minute” while I finish up a post or moderate comments.
  • Encouragement and accountability via thoughtful comments.
  • A community where I feel like the “invisible-to-society” things I do throughout the day as a wife and mother aren’t so menial!

So, there you have it.  My 100th post!  Anything you’d like to read about in the next 100?

Don’t forget to visit Heavenly Homemakersfor more Gratituesday.

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Finances Schminances

What a wonder that I do not have to worry about our family finances.  I don’t need to worry about anything, actually.  God says so!  For that I am grateful.

Dismiss all anxiety from your minds.  Present your needs to God in every form of prayer and in petitions full of gratitude.  Then God’s own peace, which is beyond all understanding, will stand guard over your hearts and minds, in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4: 6,7

Instead of stressing over past mistakes and an uncertain financial future on an income that qualifies our daughter for reduced school lunch prices, we can continue doing what we’ve set out to do from the beginning of our marriage (and before when we were single).

  • My parents taught me to “save ’till it hurts.”  I always have, so it is second nature.  For that I am grateful.
  • The first three years of our marriage, when we both had excellent-paying teaching jobs, we lived below our means.  For that I am grateful. 
  • When we shopped for our first home, we both laughed out loud when the bank wanted to loan us $200,000+ for a rather large, new home.  We went for the cozy, 1,200 square foot, circa 1965 model.  For that I am grateful. 
  • Knowing while we were engaged (and even while we dated!) that we both wanted me to stay home and raise any children that God saw fit to give us, we tried to live on one income from the beginning.  Oh, how much easier the actual transition was 5 years later when our daughter was finally born!  For that I am grateful. 
  • When God called us to Tiny Town, with it’s teeny-tiny salary, I only panicked momentarily.  (Does a whole weekend of intermittent hysterical bawling qualify as momentarily?)  Then I let God do his thing.  He proved his faithfulness by getting a really good price for our former home (in less than 24 hours on the market!) and gave us a bigger home in Tiny Town for about 1/2 of our selling price.  For that I am grateful!
  • Even on our small salary, because of the way we live and manage our money, we are able to give.  It feels so good to bless others.  For that I am grateful. 

While our country is in turmoil over bad financial choices and greedy behaviors, we can rest in the promise of our God.  He has taught us well, and thank goodness we have listened, um, most of the time!  (because we don’t always…) And praise be to God that even if we lose it all, all is not lost.  For our hope does not rest on any amount of money, but in the One who never fails. 

For more Gratituesday, visit Heavenly Homemakers.

Right There in Black and White

I haven’t always been good about taking some quiet, daily devotional time for myself.  And on the rare occasion where I’d be inspired and gung-ho to dive into my Bible and “read every last bit of it” I would always stop short… way short.  Somehow I’d get lost in all the words.  Get confused.  Lose my own attention span.  Be thinking of 1,000 other things I needed to do, or a few other things that were more fun to read.

Since I’ve lowered my standards a bit (I don’t have to read the whole Bible to get something out of it!) and simplified my devotion time (I’m currently using the easy-to-read-and-understand-and-short devotions from Our Daily Bread) and since I’ve purposed to make time for devotions first thing in the morning, I’ve had greater success.  I’ve been rewarded.  Here is this morning’s reward; clear as a bell… right there in black and white.

God gave us eternal life,

and this life is in his Son.

Whoever possesses the Son

possesses life;

whoever does not possess the Son of God

does not possess life.

1 John 5:11, 12

Ahhh, the exciting, refreshing, simple, eternal truth!  What a great way to start the day!

For more Gratituesday, visit Heavenly Homemakers.  There is so much to be thankful for!

An Unexpected Compliment

“Wow. Do you want me to wait to eat this so you can take a picture for your blog first?”

That’s what my thoughtful hubby said tonight when I served up his supper! And, no, I wasn’t planning to take a picture, but of course I had to after that compliment! He even held it by the window for me to capture the “natural light” effect. 😉

You have to understand that I think the world of Lance every day. He is incredibly thoughtful and considerate. He always puts me and the kids first. He is the hardest worker I know. But I’ll save all of that gushing for another day… maybe for our 10 year anniversary that is coming right up!

Today I’m just so thankful for that unexpected compliment. And that he supports my new blogging hobby, just as he does everything else I “get myself into.” I simply love him!

Check out more Gratituesday at Laura’s blog.

Generous Family and Friends

… and their food. That’s what I’m thankful for today.

For this… (and so much more just like it)

Generious Garden Goodness

and this…

and all the peaches that I forgot to take pictures of…

and all the fresh farm eggs that my mother-in-law brings when they visit…

and just today as I was standing outside school waiting to pick up my daughter, I noticed Mrs. S (a sweet little library volunteer and substitute teacher) hauling bag after bag of fresh pears into the building. She stopped on one of her trips from the car and asked “Would you please take this?” Um… yeah!!!

I was only wishing that I had brought the wagon so I could “help her out” a little more! (Fresh pear crisp sitting on my oven right now, by the way!)

** I’ve been asked for some pear recipes.  Here are my favorites:  pear crisp, caramel pear crumble, and pecan pear muffins.  Enjoy!

We have been so very blessed this summer with fresh food from family and friends!

Oh, and I’m thankful for my little guy, who brightened my day with this conversation when he saw the pears:

“Yum, Mommy! I wike dat!”

“Yes, you do.”

“Wat is dat?” he asked. (I LOVE how he “wikes” it before he knows what it is 😉 )

“Those are pears.”

“I wike pears!”

And then a few minutes later he kindly asked me if he could have some “parrots” for supper. I love him!

Check out what other bloggers are talkin’ about this Gratituesday.

Our Teeny-Tiny School

Last Thursday my daughter had her first day of kindergarten. The First Day of School. The First. Day. Of. School… for my oldest child. GULP.

You have no idea how much I have contemplated homeschooling in the last few months. I’m a teacher, for crying out loud. For eight years (six years full-time before I was married and while we prayed for a family, and then two years part-time) I managed a classroom of 20-25 sixth graders — and loved every minute of it. I could do it, I tell ya!

But I’m not going to. At least, not right now.

Which brings me to the very thing that I am so grateful for.

We are blessed to live in a community with an awesome Teeny-Tiny (so small that I must capitalize the Ts) school. My daughter walked practically floated (she was a bit excited) into that building on the first day knowing not only her own teacher, but probably 80% of the entire faculty, K-12. She also knows nearly half of the student body, K-12.

I’m so thankful that she is surrounded by people who know her and care for her. I’m glad that her daddy is only a minute away in the next building (he even snuck away on a break and surprised her at recess on her first day). And I’m so very grateful that she won’t be able to get away with anything will be held accountable for her actions and praised for her accomplishments!

Tiny town life is good, and we are grateful! Go see what other bloggers are grateful for today at Heavenly Homemakers.

Pandemonium

Recently, while dining on my now-cold meal (do moms ever eat warm food?) at our loud, chaotic supper table after a typically crazy day of spinning my wheels, I looked up through the happy chatter (and clatter… and beating of the platters…) and caught my husband’s weary, laughing eyes. 

He winked.

“We asked for it.”

Yes.  We did.  We asked for it.  Actually, we begged and pleaded with God for three long years.  Please… a family.

And He answered.  Six years ago this month our infertility struggles ended.

And now at supper time  

  • I eat cold food
  • I get up from the table 42 times
  • I feed someone else from my plate (because food tastes better off of mom’s plate)
  • I mentally calculate how much food I’m going to have to buy in 10 years
  • I soak it all in

We asked.  He answered.  And we are grateful for the pandemonium that makes us a family.

Check out Laura’s blog for more Gratituesday.