Friday, May 29, 2009

softs! (school's out for the summer!)

Yeah!!!! Today is our last official day of school! Things are being wrapped up! John Samuel, Kenzie and I are mere pages away from the end of the gastropod chapter! (exciting reading my friends!) For a final project we have a worm box that we're going to build. {pictures to come!}Maggie is putting the finishing touches on her Nation Project Power Point presentation (try saying that three times in a row!) and Mckenzie tied the last ribbon on her Tag book. Mckenzie did this project all on her own. I provided the papers, ribbons and editing skills...she did all the cutting, writing, photo copying, assembling and decorating...:). She used envelopes as the pockets and each little tab tells you something about the book. The last one has her review of the book! She's so proud of it! So, all the math lessons are checked off, the credit hour logs are filled in and we're ready to shift into a lower gear. It's been a good year, a very good year. I still have paper work to fill out for our umbrella program, but for now we're reveling in our new found freedom! Hope your weekend finds you checking off some things on your list and finding time to revel! Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

pure and simple

Just a quick survey of some of the things that I'm finding gratification in these days...pure and simple.
the peonies in my flower beds:: in full bloom
seeing my guy work hard::he made a poster for a party we had for the basketball team, all by himself (without being asked)
the flags waving on Memorial day:: each flag represents 5 soldiers who died in action at the Monocacy National Battlefield
long term knitting projects:: rusted root
short term sewing projects:: cloth napkins for our meals (muffins by kenzie)
seeing my girls enjoy being together:: listening to an ipod and sharing earphones having the windows open and enjoying the warm air:: molly likes it too reading a classic:: just for pleasure, but learning some things along the way

....What things are bringing you pleasure...pure and simple?

Thursday, May 21, 2009


Sometimes I get a bit forgetful. I forget that it's not all about me. I can be in a hurry to do what I want, when I want. My agenda often overshadows His agenda. I get impatient and flustered. I worry and allow fear to whisper in my ear (and I end up listening to it). Forgetting that He's got it all in control. The job of the believer is to BELIEVE. Believing allows me to shine. I need to shine with the truth that He is more than enough. He is able to supply all my needs. He is generous.
"Here's another way to put it: You're here to be light, bringing out the God-colors in the world. God is not a secret to be kept. We're going public with this, as public as a city on a hill. If I make you light-bearers, you don't think I'm going to hide you under a bucket, do you? I'm putting you on a light stand. Now that I've put you there on a hilltop, on a light stand—shine! Keep open house; be generous with your lives. By opening up to others, you'll prompt people to open up with God, this generous Father in heaven. " Matthew 5: 16 (the message)
I want to paint my world with those God-colors. I want to SHINE!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

picnic season

It's time for picnics and summertime gatherings! Yeah!! This is one of our family's favorite summer salads, although we really do enjoy it all year long...I just seem to make it more in the summer.

Broccoli, Bacon & Cheddar Salad
4 heads of broccoli, cut into bite sized pieces

1 lb. cooked bacon, crumpled
2 c. shredded Cheddar
2 bunches green onion
1/2 head of cauliflower, cut into bite sized pieces

Dressing:2 cup mayo *1 cup sugar *1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
Stir till lumps are gone. Sprinkle with pepper. Pour over top of chopped up broccoli, cauliflower and green onions. Stir in cheese and bacon.

You can omit the cauliflower if you'd like. I added that to stretch the salad out a bit. I've also had this where walnuts or almonds have been added. It's also easy halve this recipe if you aren't planning to attend a group gathering. Make it your own! Enjoy!

Friday, May 15, 2009


A couple of weeks back, we were reading during our family worship time about how Jesus came to earth to serve. "Just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many." Matthew 20:28. We got to talking about it and decided that we could really do better in the area of serving each other. So, we decided to have a Secret Servant Day. The idea behind it was to look for ways to serve each other in a way that wouldn't draw attention to the server but rather the service. The goal on Secret Servant day was to do 3 secret things that would bless someone in the family - the trick was to do it in secret. I positioned this white board sign on the kitchen counter as a reminder. The entire experiment proved very fruitful. We had beds made by mysterious bed makers, dishes put away without being nagged, toothpaste wiped out of the sink and lots of other miscellaneous blessings. Everyone had fun thinking about ways that they could be a help to each other. We'll definitely be doing this again from time to time...just to keep our servant skills sharp.

"Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way, they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life." 1Timothy 6:19
On a slightly different note, I realize how often we use our white boards throughout the day. I actually have a variety of pictures that I've taken of our white boards when I see something I want to remember. I've started a flickr set with those pictures....feel free to check it out, some of them will make you smile. In the meantime, have a great weekend...I hope it's filled with things that make you smile!

Monday, May 11, 2009

I'll take a refill!

I'll take a repeat on Mother's day, thank you. My honey and kids totally blessed me yesterday. It started off with breakfast in bed and lots of handmade cards. Then after church, John handled life while I dug in the dirt and went to the nursery. He had bought me some plants and I totally enjoyed myself planting them along with some newly acquired perennials that the kids and my mother in law gave me in the form of a gift card. I didn't even have to stop and think about dinner...he (and the kids) took care of that too. (Thanks guys for making my day so great!)Oh, and my flowers from the Lord bloomed just in time for Mother's day too! Every year, the rhododendrons bloom right outside my bedroom window and I always like to think that they are my gift from my heavenly father. Perfect. It was a wonderful day! I hope yours was full of blessings as well.
I did miss seeing my mom though. (love you mom!) She's away on a golf trip, so I gave her gift to her early. She is such a great mom and she has a lot on her plate right now...I knew a coffee break would make her day.
I made her a coffee cuff. I actually made one for all the moms in my life. I filled them with gift cards to their favorite coffee shops so they could enjoy some treats. Every mom needs treats along the way, right? They were a lot of fun to make. It was also a great way to use some trendy fabrics. Pink milk and fairycakes' has a great coffee cozy tutorial on flickr. She has step by step pictures and directions that walk you through the entire process. One thing I found was that on the ends you don't need to add an inch when making your template, a half inch all the way around is fine. I added these cute tags to go inside the cup to give a bit more info on the coffee cuff. I slipped them in with the gift card and a personal note. They are over on my side bar if you'd like to print off some to use with your own coffee cuffs. I sprinkled some shredded package filler in the bottom to make everything a bit prettier.
I made some personalized cuffs for my kid's teachers. For these I just stitched the kid's teacher's names on the cuff before I sewed them together. These made great end of the year thank you gifts. I slipped a Starbucks gift card inside them. Erin also has a coffee cozy pattern on her blog. Hers are super cute too!
So, I'll take a refill on Mother's Day! How about you?

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Do you have a special friend? I have been blessed with some wonderful friends. You know what I mean? Friends that I can just be myself when I'm with them. Friends that I can call when I need a shoulder to cry on, or vent to when I'm feeling stressed. They are there for me when I need someone to pray or listen or laugh. Friends that will tell me when my purse is too mature for me...or that I'm being a little hard on myself. I'm so thankful for the friends God has sprinkled in my life. One of those wonderful friends was with me when we stumbled across this scarf. Kristyn and I bought the yarn and cast on together when she was here visiting in April. The scarf didn't have a pattern or even a name, so we decided to call it the Girlfriend Scarf. I chose these smoky greys and corals and she chose purples and pinks. You can see her scarf here. It's knit with 2 amazingly different fibers...a merino wool sock yarn and a luscious, frail mohair. Just like friends. Entirely different when apart but wonderful when knit together. Aren't you glad your friends aren't exactly like you? The differences are what make friendship so special. Just like friendship, the scarf took some time to knit. I used every bit of the merino wool. I am so glad I knit this scarf, I will really enjoy it when the weather gets chilly. Every good friendship is the same way, you must give it time and attention in order for it to grow. I encourage you to take some time to let your friends know how much you value them. It'll make their day (and yours too).

"A hug is worth a thousand words. A friend is worth more.""A friend loves at all times." Proverbs 17:17

The pattern is over on my sidebar so you can make your own girlfriend scarf! Enjoy! Thanks for being my friends.

(special thanks to Maggie for taking my photos...she took a time out from a game of dodgeball to click some pics for me! :))

Friday, May 1, 2009


I've been trying to get some yard/gardening work done which really makes me smile. I love being outside digging in the dirt, so I've not been too busy with knitting. As a matter of fact, I have nothing on the needles right now. I'm ready to start my Rusted Root sweater, I just haven't had time to swatch and actually cast on.Here are some other things that have been making me smile lately: A couple of weeks ago, I found this pattern for the Practically Hyperbolic Dishcloth. It sounds quite impressive. It's actually quite easy. I'm just a beginner crocheter and I found the pattern easy to read. They were fun to make and I know there will be more in my future. They are a great way to use up leftovers. The girls got invited to a birthday party last week and I tried out one of Leslie's package pillows. (I forgot to take a picture and remembered as we pulled up the party...:)) It was quick and easy to make. I think it took me less than 45 minutes from start to finish. That's something to smile about. Thanks Leslie! And from what I heard, the recipient really liked it. We tucked some money in the pocket as her main birthday gift. We've got a chock full weekend ahead of us: a baseball game, a piano concert, a mother/daughter tea, errands and church. Maybe I can squeeze in some knitting. I hope your weekend brings you some smiles and allows you some time to do something fun.