Friday, December 28, 2007

Letter Writing Friday...

Just like us, the inside is the most important....but that doesn't mean you can't dress up the outside too! Here are some ways to create a neat envelope to get in the mail (just don't forget to include the letter inside!).

  • Stickers. You can get stickers almost anywhere. Some are more expensive than others, so watch out. Some places I like are Hallmark, Dollar Tree, or CBD.

  • Crayons. Take a crayon and draw a picture on the outside of the envelope.

  • Borders. Draw, print, or stamp a border along the side or back of the envelope.

  • Creative Name. You don't always have to put the formal name of someone. The post office looks at the address part to get where to mail it. You can therefore mail it to, "The Birthday Girl," "The New Mom," "Jumbo," "The World Traveller" or some such thing. You can write it in crayon, colored pen, caligraphy, arched, balloon letters, you choose!

  • Return Address. This can be put on the back of the envelope, down the side as a border, or the more traditional upper left hand corner. You can hand write it or you can purchess neat reaturn address stickers too.

Things to remember:

  1. Always keep the addresses legible!

  2. Don't cover up the addresses or stamp with your artwork/stickers/etc.

  3. Use ink that is dark enough to read

Thursday, December 27, 2007

Sale tips...

Well, I don't have the pictures I was hoping for, but I'll go ahead and post anyway. :)
So, this past month, I've gotten hooked on coupons and sale items. It all started with a blog called "Money Saving Mom" and a friend. Within that month, I have been able to cut our grochery bill in half! (I realized I would be saving some, but not HALF!)
Sometimes on the radio, I hear the ad with the chipper lady saying, "..You get such a good feeling from saving money at the grochery store...." and I must admit, I didn't really believe her. "Sure, it would be nice," I thought, "but it wouldn't make much difference to me." BUT.....I found out it's true! It really is fun to search for the right deal, and keep my eyes open for sales and coupons. It's so fun to come home from shopping and tell Mathew, "Look, look! We saved $40 today" and to see him smile. (I think sometimes he's not smiling for the same reasons I am! lol) are some tips I've learned so far about deal hunting and money saving....
  1. Look for coupons. I started out with no coupons, and now have a nice stack. I find coupons online ( and, in the newspaper (sometimes they are rather inconspicuous), and in our advertiser (Walmart, Pamida, Pizza Hut), at work (co-workers have an envelope downstairs of coupons they don't use).
  2. Watch the ads. I've noticed, that if I watch the ads every week, I can see what grocheries are on sale, as well as other things (like batteries or clothes etc). If I see a brand name item (like Duracell or something), I go online and Google search for "*brand name item* coupon." For instance....I found a coupon for Nature Made Vitamins ($3.00 off) and I used two of those coupons while there was a sale at Walgreens for Buy One Get One Free. So the vitamins, normally $10 each, ended up being about $3.oo each)
  3. Use your head. Just because something is on sale, or even a bargin deal, think about if you really need it or not. I've made the mistake a couple times of getting a "good deal", when actually, I wouldn't bought the item ever if it hadn't been on sale, and I still haven't used it. Also, you can often double up coupons at stores like Target, Walgreens, and Walmart. So, use a coupon + a sale price and get a good deal.
  4. Don't waste your time. Coupon hunting can be time consuming. I realize that, although I like to surf the internet and spend my time store hopping, it's really not the best use of my time. Sure, God wants me to be wise, but He doesn't want me to be stingy with money or flustered with people and family or rushing past what's important to Him just because I'm in search of a good deal! I've found a small folder to keep my coupons in, I've bookmarked my favorite and easiest coupon web pages, I've limited myself to shopping twice a week (one main trip, one quick run) and to searching the internet once or twice a week.

One last thing. Here is a list of my favorite web sites to check on deals:

I'm Excited....

I'm excited today....and am anxious to be done with work for the day. I'm excited because our family is coming up for the weekend. I'm excited because it's snowing. I'm excited because of some new lesson plans I've made. I'm excited because I found some really yummy chocolate to eat. I'm excited because I'm a child of the King.

"Therefore we do not look at what we can see, instead we look at what we can't see because what can be seen lasts only a short time, but what can't be seen lasts forever!" 2 Cor. 4:18

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Tired Tidbits of our Trip....

I am so tired! We just got back from a trip to Arizona at 1:30 am this morning. It was fun, but I am so tired! (Did I mention that already?)
Reasons I know I'm tired:
  1. I opened the door and then ran into it.
  2. I forgot my wedding ring after I put hand lotion on.
  3. My eyes are puffy.

There are many things I am thankful for about this Christmas:

  1. A trip to see our brother
  2. Sammi, our niece
  3. Beautiful sunsets in AZ desert
  4. Long talks with Mathew
  5. Naps
  6. Christmas lights
  7. peanut M & Ms
  8. long visit with my sister on the way home
  9. A phone that works
  10. A house that was warm to come home to
  11. Parents

Our trip was pretty uneventful, but very relaxing! (I will post pictures later) Two neat things God provided for us coming home were,

  1. He helped us be on time for our flight. (We entered the AZ airport early, checked our bags and got our tickets, and then commenced to wander around the airport shops. We had a fun time just browsing and then finding a place to eat, all the while totally forgetting that we hadn't gone through security check yet. So, about 1/2 hour before boarding time, we started towards our gate....and found ourselves in a loooong line for security check. We had forgotten we were still in the outer part of the airport! Thankfully, God had made our flight 15 mintues late which made it perfect for us to get through line and to our gate just in time!)
  2. He provided a better way for us to drive home. (We were both pretty tired by the time we got to the MN airport, and not really sure how we would manage the 4 hour drive home in the dark. BUT, my sister and niece decided they would come up early to our mom''s house, so came with us last night. She drove. We visited. Mathew and Sammi slept. It worked out perfect!)

Thursday, December 20, 2007


Saturday morning we woke up to God's beautiful world! I don't think I've ever seen it so covered every tree branch, every grass blade, every detail of everything to make a white wonderland. God definitely is the master of beauty!

(Here is a definition of Hoarfrost: Fernlike crystals of ice that form by deposition of water vapor on twigs, tree branches, and other vegetation.)

I've been reading through a book called Captivating, and I love what it says about beauty.
  1. Beauty invites. "It captures you, as in a piece of music or a garden. It draws you in, holds your attention. You can't wait to get back to it, spend time with it. All of the responses that God wants of us."
  2. Beauty nourishes.
  3. Beauty comforts.
  4. Beauty inspires.
  5. Beauty is transcendent. "Sometimes the beauty is so deep it pierces us with longing. For what? For life as it was meant to be. Beauty reminds us of an Eden we have never known, but somehow know our hearts were created for. Beauty speaks of heaven to come, when all shall be beautiful. It haunts us with eternity. Beauty says, 'There is a glory calling to you.' And if there is a glory, there is a source of glory. What great goodness could have possibly created this? What generosity gave us this to behold? Beauty draws us to God."

May you be aware of beauty in your life this week, and be drawn to God through it!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

5 Holiday Tips

Over at Rocks in My Dryer she is having her "Works for Me Wednesday" post.
Here is a list of things I think are important to remember during the holidays:

1. Don't get in over your head. Make a list of what is important to do this week, and don't keep adding and adding. Learn to limit what you do....and do it to your very best.

2. Take time out to pray and read God's word. Remember to look for God's perspectives on things. Don't worry.

3. Have fun. Make play time with friends and family. Laugh. Alot.

4. Praise God. Praise Him with music and song. Listen to music. Sing it yourself. Turn the radio on. Learn a new Psalm.

5. Keep things in focus. Remember that the world will never be the same simply because the Son of God was born a little baby. Find some ways to make that a priority, even over other traditions.

Monday, December 17, 2007

My Favorite...

Here is list of my favorite Christmas songs:
  1. Away in the Manger (version 2)
  2. What Child is This
  3. We Three Kings
  4. O Come, O Come (or Immanuel)
  5. Go Tell It On the Mountain
  6. Silver Bells
  7. I'm Just a Poor Little Christmas Tree
  8. Little Stranger in a Manger
  9. Come On Ring Those Bells
  10. Let It Snow (mostly for the fact I love snow!)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

On Friendship...

I saw this list the other day in a book called "Lists to Live By." I thought it was pretty good and I'd like to share it.

How to Build a Friendship With Someone You're Dating (or just being friends with someone of the opposite sex)

  1. Keep physical contact to a minimum.

  2. Explore new interests and hobbies.

  3. Do activities that are fun.

  4. Be yourself - don't put on an act just to get the person to like you.

  5. Ask open-ended questions.

  6. Listen to the other person's heart, not just to the words.

  7. Talk with a godly older couple and discover how they built their friendship.

  8. Read a good book together, and discuss how its content can help you foster your relationship.

  9. Seek to understand the other person's viewpoint.

    (Dick Purnell from Decision Magazine)

I know one of the main things that drew me into friendship with my (now) husband was his respect of my personal space "bubble." That was a big thing for me, that he would give me that space so I wasn't always on gaurd and could be myself. It, in turn, helped me respect him for his values too. The fact that we shared Christ was another strength of our friendship, as was his willingness to serve others and share a smile.

While we have had our ups and downs and dissagreements, just like any other couple, I'm still so grateful for the friendship we shared before we were even serious! I know one of the things we both (individually) had declared to God, was that we weren't going to activily seek a boyfriend/girlfriend at that time in our lives. That God was to be our passion, and He had created us for a purpose and a place. I knew that I should be content with Him, and rely on Him in that area. It was after a long talk with God that I was at peace, and it was a couple months after that, that He really blessed me with the beginnings of a friendship with Mathew.

I know every relationship is different, but just keep in mind that God really does want to be first in our lives. He will lead and guide. Use your head. Don't jump to conclusions. Have some guidelines. Develop a pure friendship. and most of all, keep God first!

Friday, December 14, 2007

How Much Do You REALLY Know About Christmas??

Christmas I.Q. Test
* Edit* The answer to #5 is in question. Check out Matt 1:24.

1. As long as Christmas has been celebrated, it has been on December 25.
a) True b) False

2. Joseph was from:
a) Bethlehem b) Jerusalem c) Nazareth d) Egypt e) Minnesota f) none of the above

3. How did Mary and Joseph travel to Bethlehem?
a) camel b) donkey c) walked d) volkswagen e) Joseph walked, Mary rode a donkey f) who knows?

4. Mary and Joseph were married when Mary became pregnant.
a) True b) False

5. Mary and Joseph were married when Jesus was born:
a) True b) False

6. What did the innkeeper tell Mary and Joseph?
a) Come back after the Christmas rush and I should have some vacancies. b) I have a stable you can use. c) There is no room in the inn. d) Both B and C e) None of the above

7. Jesus was delivered in a:
a) stable b) manger c) cave d) barn e) unknown

8. A manger is a:
a) stable for domestic animals b) wooden hay storage bin c) feeding trough d) barn

9. Which animals does the Bible say were present at Jesus' birth?
a) cows, sheep, goats b) cows, donkeys, sheep c) sheep and goats only d) miscellaneous barnyard animals e) lions, tigers, elephants f) none of the above

10. Who saw the "star in the east"?
a) shepherds b) Mary and Joseph c) three kings d) Both A and C e) none of the above

11. How many angels spoke to the shepherds?
a) one b) two c) a "multitude" d) none of the above

12. What "sign" did the angels tell the shepherds to look for?
a) "This way to the baby Jesus" b) a star over Bethlehem c) a baby that doesn't cry d) a house with a Christmas tree e) a baby in a stable f) none of the above

13. What did the angels say?
a) "Joy to the world, the Lord is come" b) "Alleluia" c) "Unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given" d) "Glory to God in the highest" e) "Glory to God, the New born King" f) "My Sweet Lord"

14. What is the heavenly host?
a) angel at the gate of heaven b) angel who invites people to heaven c) angel who serves refreshments in heaven d) an angel choir e) an angel army f) none of the above

15. There was snow that first Christmas:
a) only in Bethlehem b) all over Israel c) nowhere in Israel d) somewhere in Israel e) Mary and Joseph only "dreamed" of a white Christmas

16. The baby Jesus cried:
a) when the doctor slapped Him on His behind b) just like other babies cry c) when the little drummer boy started beating his drum d) He never cried

17. What is "frankincense"?
a) a precious metal b) a precious fabric c) a precious perfume d) an eastern monster story e) none of the above

18. What is "myrrh"?
a) an easily shaped metal b) a spice used for burying people c) a drink d) after-shave lotion e) none of the above

19. How many wise men came to see Jesus?
a) 1 b) 2 c) 3 d) unknown

20. What does "wise men" refer to?
a) men of the educated class b) they were eastern kings c) they were astrologers d) they were "sages" e) they were smart enough to follow the star

21. The wise men found Jesus in a:
a) manger b) stable c) house d) Holiday Inn e) good mood

22. The wise men stopped in Jerusalem:
a) to inform Herod about Jesus b) to find out where Jesus was c) to ask about the star they saw d) for gas e) to buy presents for Jesus

23. Where do we find the Christmas story in order to check up on all these ridiculous qustions?
a) Matthew b) Mark c) Luke d) John e) All of the above f) only A and B g) Only A and C h) Only A, B, and C i) Only X, Y, and Z j) Aesops Fables

24. When Joseph and Mary found out that Mary was pregnant with jesus, what happened?
a) They got married b) Joseph wanted to break up the engagement c) Mary left town for three months d) an angel told them to go to Bethlehem e) Both A and D f) Both B and C

25. Who told Mary and Joseph to go to Bethlehem?
a) the angel b) Mary's mother c) Herod d) Caesar Augustus e) Alexander the Great f) no one told them to

26. Joseph took the baby Jesus to Egypt:
a) to show Him the pyramids b) to teach Him the wisdom of the Pharoahs c) to put Him in a basket in the reeds by the river d) because he dreamed about it e) to be taxed f) Joseph did not take Jesus to Eqypt g) none of the above

Check your answers below, then take the poll on the sidebar!

----------Key----------1. (b) 2. (c) 3. (e) 4. (b) 5. (b) 6. (d) 7. (b) 8. (c) 9. (f) 10. (e) 11. (a) 12. (f) 13. (d) 14. (e) 15. (c) 16. (b) 17. (c) 18. (b) 19. (d) 20. (c) 21. (c) 22. (b) 23. (g) 24. (f) 25. (d) 26. (d)

Letter Writing Friday: 20 Things to Include in a Letter

Whether a kid or an adult, it's fun to get letters! Here is a list of things that you could include to make it even more fun:

  1. feather

  2. foreign stamps

  3. stickers

  4. directions for a craft

  5. trading cards

  6. gift certificates (snacks, eating out, or movies)

  7. self-addressed envelope

  8. recipies

  9. game of tic-tac-toe (started)

  10. story

  11. photos

  12. currency

  13. coupons

  14. CD of a sound you heard or a song you like

  15. hankie

  16. leaves

  17. party hat or folded decorations

  18. confetti

  19. seed packet

  20. pressed flowers

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

PB & Honey Sandwiches

Over at Rocks in my Dryer there are all sorts of neat ideas and helpful tips!

Today, my tip is about making (and eating) a Peanut Butter and Honey sandwhich. :)
If you've made PB & Honey before, you'll have noticed that the honey tends to slide off the edge and drip all over your hand as you crunch and munch. Here is an easy solution to that problem (maybe you know this already!!): Add one large dollop (that's a large spoonful I'm sure) of PB in the middle of your piece of bread. Drizzle the honey (as much as you like) on top of that dollop of PB and immediately (after closing the honey jar), mix the two together with a spoon. Now, they are nice and spreadable for your whole piece of bread AND the honey won't run away! Works for me!

Also check out Abbi & Amy's posts!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Of Photos and Such

My camera is working!

For a while, my camera didn't seem to be working.....shutting off instantly and I could never get it on. It was frustrating.....but then! My friend Keren mentioned she had the same problem when she used generic batteries (like I was trying to do), but the name brand batteries worked fine.

So, I invested in some rechargeable Duracell batteries! Horay...they work! In fact, it's a big money saver considering how many batteries I would normally go through with my camera. Now, instead of buying new ones, I just recharge them!

So, now that my camera is working, I've been experimenting with outside pictures. I found a free, handy web site (Picnik) to edit my photos online. It was here I fiddled around with these new blog banners..... how fun!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Jesse Tree

Now that we're in a home of our own, I've been thinking alot about Christmas and Christmas traditions. One of the new things I've been studying and reading about, is something called a Jesse Tree. It's basically a tree with ornaments that have a special meaning about Christ or the Bible (for instance, an ark for Noah's ark). It is used during the month of December in some churches to teach about the coming of Christ (His birth anyways). After reading about it, I thought it might be interesting to do something similar with our family. (Well, we don't have kids yet, but I thought it'd be neat to do with kids weekly). I came up with a purpose and a list of things I'd do, and thought I'd share it with you.

"Jesus Tree: To learn about God's plan from the beginning of time, and how it relates to us.
God loves us. Very much. Even from when we first sinned in the garden of Eden, He had a plan to save us through His Son, Jesus Christ. Christmas is often a one-day splurge of activity and celebration. But there's more to Christ than His birth and more to the story than 33 years. Let's take a look."

Then, what I've done, is made 16 Bible lessons with a verse to think about, questions, and an ornament craft to work on with the kids. Every lesson, we'd make an ornament and hang it on a bare-branch tree. Christmas day, I'd change the bare-branch tree to a full evergreen, decorated with lights and new ornaments. Here is the basic outline:

  1. Adam & Eve. Key verse: Genesis 3:14,15. Symbol: Snake or fruit.
  2. Noah's Ark. Key Verse: Gen 6:5,6. Symbol: Dove, boat, or prism.
  3. Abraham's Offspring. Genesis 17:7. Symbol: Star.
  4. Jacob's Blessing. Gen 28:14. Symbol: Angel or ladder.
  5. Judah's Inheritance. Gen 49:10. Symbol: Seal, scepter, or jewel.
  6. Moses' Method. Deut. 7:9 Symbol: Red ribbon or red glass ornament (blood sacrifice)
  7. Ruth's Righteousness. Ruth 1:16. Symbol: wheat
  8. Jesse's Geneology. Is. 11:1 Symbol: Branch or leaf.
  9. David's Throne. Jer 23:5. Symbol: Crown.
  10. Immanuel. Is 7:14. Symbol: The word Immanuel or the letter I
  11. Bethlehem's Child. Micah 5:2. Symbol: shed, nativity or house
  12. Eternal Life. Psalm 16:10. Symbol: the word Joy.
  13. Prince of Peace. Is 9:6. Symbol: The letter P or something white.
  14. Man of Sorrows. Is 53:7. Symbol: thorn or tear
  15. Out of Eygpt. Hos 11:1. Symbol: potporri or pyramid.
  16. The Great Shepherd. Is 35:3. Symbol: Sheep or candy cane.
  17. Christmas Day. Matt 1,2. Lights to represent the Light of the world. Gold to represent His majesty. White to represent His holiness. Green to represent His life. Hang up Jesus' many names as ornaments.

Here is what a lesson looks like:

Day One: Adam and Eve

Text: Genesis 3:1-19

Key Verse: Genesis 3:14,15

Symbol: Fruit (Dried Apple Ornament)

To Think About:

  • Even from the very beginning, God loved us past our sin and made a plan for us. Part of His plan was to send His Son.
  • Can you see where it talks about this in these verses?
  • Where is it pointing to Jesus?
  • What does it say Jesus will do?

Read these as well:

  • John 1:1
  • Isaiah 59:1-3
What are some things you do around this holiday time?

Friday, December 7, 2007

A New Experience

A couple nights ago, on our way home from church, we got a flat tire. It was the first time for both of us! And believe me, we did it good! It was quite an adventure (but easier on me because I could run in and out of the house when I got cold. Poor Mathew stayed out the whole time) After 3 tries, some extra implements, and a couple time outs in the warm house (it was about -10 last night), we got it done! Here are some tips next time you need to change a tire:

  1. Have the car on a flat (not inclined) surface

  2. Have a spare tire, jack, ground cloth and tire iron in the trunk.

  3. Put the emergency break on before you start

For more details, check out How To Change a Tire.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Go Bannanas!


  • Bananas don't grow on trees, as is commonly believed. They grow on compacted, water-filled leaf stalks that grow up to 25 feet high. They are the world's largest herb. (Source: The Packer, 9/9/89)

  • Alexander the Great discovered bananas in his conquest of India in 327 B.C.

  • As the green color of bananas turns to yellow, the starch in the fruit turns to sugar.

To ripen green bananas, put them into a plastic bag, seal it and place the bag in a warm place like on top of your refrigerator. This will cause the bananas to heat up which speeds the ripening process. You can also put other green fruit like peaches and pears into the bag with a ripe banana, and they will ripen faster as well!You can freeze bananas! Just peel and store in plastic bags up to 6 months.Thaw and drain frozen extra-ripe bananas and use in baked goods... or slice frozen into blender drinks. Have for breakfast, snack, refreshment or as a frosty ice cream-like dessert without all the extra fat or calories.Sauté green-tipped bananas until brown in just enough margarine or cooking spray to coat. Serve as a side dish or "starch" with chicken, pork or even fish. (from Marketplace Food & Drug)

Be sure to check out Tammy's Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins!

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Works for Me Menus

Over at Rocks in My Dryer, she had a lovely post about quick and easy to serve meals. Check it out at Works for Me Wednesday. You can also look at Abbi's meal idea. Here's a few I have used, although I'm still working on my cooking ability!

1. Short on time

  • Stir fry & Rice (simply stir fry fresh or frozen veggies, add a little salt, pepper, soy sauce, garlic, onion, and chili-garlic paste. add water and cornstarch to make gravy. serve over rice)

2. Short on ingredients

  • Maggie Noodles (this is an international version of Ramen noodles....a little bit tastier with a bit of spice. add some frozen peas or carrots)

3. Short on evening time

  • Slow cooker Broccoli Cheese soup (very simple, but does need 2-4 hours of planning ahead to get it started in the slow cooker)

4. Desserts

  • No-bake cookies

  • Instant pudding

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Snow and Work

Well, it's been a while since I've been able to log in, but here I am!

It's gotten busy at work.

It's snowed alot!

Here are some pretty pictures of our heavy snows.

I've also been working on decorating our home. (See Abbi's blog) I had some extra courdoroy material that was teal and gold, very pretty, so I sewed some runners and tablecloths.

I also cut out some snowflakes to hang in our window.

Hope you are enjoying your December too!

Friday, November 30, 2007

My $5 Deal

This is my $5 deal. I found it at Goodwill the other day. It's splendid! It's a marble rolling pin with a marble stand. It works beautifully for pie crusts and cookies and bisquits. I think it might be a bit "sticky" (at least, that's what my mom said) but it still rolls really nice. I didn't even notice! I think I'll make cookies tonight...... :)

Homemade Paper!

This is a recipie for homemade paper that I found at Pioneer Thinking.
I remember one time my brother made paper for my birthday. It turned out pretty thick, but still useable!

Some other ideas with homemade paper are to make it with degradeable ingredients and then add forget-me-not seeds so that, after reading the letter, the recipient can just plant their own flowers!

"Making Handmade Paper
in 10 easy steps"

"Ancient Egyptians invented the first substance like the paper we know today called Papyrus. Papyrus scrolls were made by taking slices of the inner part of the papyrus stem, flattening then pounded into a hard, thin sheet. The word "paper" comes from the word "papyrus". The Paper that we know today was invented by Ts'ai Lun in A.D. 105, It is believed that he mixed hemp, mulberry bark, and rags with water, mashed it into a pulp, pressed out the liquid and hung it to dry in the sun. Paper was born and this humble mixture would set off one of mankind's greatest communication revolutions.
Today there is a revival in homemade papermaking crafts. Not only is it a fun experience for you and the kids, but it's a good way to recycle waste into wonderful possibilities.

Below you will find a simple papermaking recipe to get you started. If this is the first time you are making paper, don't be afraid to experiment with different fibers, you don't have to stick with paper related products. Add whole flower heads to the pulp mixture after it has been through the blender. You can add scraps of yarn, tin foil, even seeds. Its all comes down to what you want. Experiment with different textures and colors after all Ts'ai Lun did! Remember, some of your ideas will turn out while others may not. Have fun with it, express your creativity."

Simple Recipe:

Many types of paper that can be used include:

Computer Paper (unprinted)
Newspaper (If you want a grayish colored paper)
Egg Cartons
Old Cards (For heavier paper)
Toilet Paper
Paper Bags
Non Waxed Boxes (Pre-soak in warm water)
Office Paper
Tissue Paper (For finer paper)
Typing Paper
Construction Paper

Supplies you'll need:

Window Screening (mold)
Wood Frame (old picture frame can be used too) (deckle)
Plastic Basin/Tub (Large enough to totally immerse frame)
Blender/Food Processor (For making paper pulp)
White Felt or Flannel Fabric
Staples or Tacks (For tacking screen on frame)
Liquid starch (optional)


1. Select the pieces of paper to be recycled. You can even mix different types to create your own unique paper.
2. Rip the paper into small bits, and place into the blender. (about half full). Fill the blender with warm water. Run the blender slowly at first then increase the speed until the pulp looks smooth and well blended. ( 30 -40 seconds) Check that no flakes of paper remain. If there are, blend longer.
3. The next step is to make a mold. The mold, in this case, is made simply by stretching fiberglass screen (plain old door and window screen) over a wooden frame and stapling it. It should be as tight as possible.
4. Fill the basin about half way with water. Add 3 blender loads of pulp. (the more pulp you add the thicker the finished paper will be) Stir the mixture.
5. Now is the time to add the liquid starch for sizing.(This is not necessary but if the paper is going to be used for writing on, you should add some, the starch helps to prevent inks from soaking into the paper fibers.) Stir 2 teaspoons of liquid starch into the pulp.
Place the mold into the pulp and then level it out while it is submerged. Gently wiggle it side-to-side until the pulp on top of the screen looks even.
6. Slowly lift the mold up until it is above the level of the water. Wait until most of the water has drained from the new paper sheet. If the paper is very thick, remove some pulp from the tub. If it is too thin, add more pulp and stir the mixture again.
7. When the mold stops dripping, gently place one edge on the side of a fabric square (felt or flannel square). Gently ease the mold down flat, with the paper directly on the fabric. Use a sponge to press out as much water as possible. Wring the excess water from the sponge back into the large plastic tub.
8. Now comes the tricky part. Hold the fabric square flat and slowly lift the edge of the mold. The wet sheet of paper should remain on the fabric. If it sticks to the mold, you may have pulled to fast or not pressed out enough water. It takes a little practice. You can gently press out any bubbles and loose edges at this point.
9. Repeat the steps above, and stack the fabric squares on a cookie sheet. Save one fabric square to place on the top of the stack to cover the last piece of paper. Use another cookie sheet to press the remaining water out of the stack. (do this outside or in the bathtub, it can make a mess)
10. After you press the stack, gently separate the sheets. They can be dried by hanging on a clothesline or laying them out on sheets of newspaper. When they have dried peel them off the fabric and voila! you have paper!

Thursday, November 29, 2007

A Brand New Day

Today, I woke up grumpy. I don't normally tend to do this. I usually wake up really smiley and cheerful, and then, maybe later, I might get grumpy, but not today. I'm afraid it took me till this afternoon to really get over it and be able to laugh at myself.

I must have been sleeping really heavy because I woke up fast and hard and it was late. I jumped out of bed in a hurry but didn't really know why. Just went. Mathew wasn't feeling well and had no idea why I was so bothered. Poor guy. Anyway, I did take some extra time to pray this morning, but it felt like I was more distracted than concentrating. Once at work, I had time to slow down a bit and re-think things. At lunch time I was able to take a quick nap and talk things over with Mathew and thankfully, laugh at how silly and upset I was at simply being awoken too quickly and hustled off to work in the cold!

One thing it does make me realize, is that I have a lot to work on as far as my Christlike spirit being consistent. It's often the little things that get me down and not the big things. One thing I was glad about this morning, was I caught myself thinking negative thoughts about chores and tasks and people, kind of on a roll, and was able to tell myself, "Stop. Just because you are upset about one thing doesn't make everything else bad." And I realized, it didn't. It was just my thoughts and feelings were running away with me. So instead, I thought about the Psalms I read yesterday morning...."I will praise you with all my heart and soul. I will give thanks, because you are good. Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens. Your faithfullness, stretches to the sea."

How about you? What do you do when you are grumpy? This afternoon, I think I will think of things I can be thankful for. Let me have an attitude of grace instead of grumpiness!

  1. A loving God
  2. Caring husband
  3. health
  4. sparkling snow
  5. Christmas lights
  6. funny squeaky shoes
  7. tasks for me to do
  8. an evening of quiet
  9. sunshine
  10. friends and family

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Sewing Projects

Well, I've never been much of a sewer, but I'm trying my hand at a few projects just for fun and for gifts. My first project was this baby blanket for a friend. It was pretty simple but turned out nice.

My second project was a pair of pajama pants for Mathew. It was more challenging than I thought to get certain parts sewn right, but my mom came over to help. :)

I've also made two floor pillows. This one is not quite finished, I have buttons to put on still (to hold the batting in place), and need to whip stitch the top.

The most recent item I've been trying, is these felt rabbits. This one looks kind of "batty", but the next one will hopefully look more like a bunny!


Grrr. I'm having trouble posting to my blog. I'm trying some photos and they won't upload. I also went to change some formats and it's going wacky on me. *sigh* So, I guess my posting will have to wait.
Today it snowed! Horay! I'm very happy for the snow.......the only problem is, I left my snow boots at Dad & Mom's house! Whoops. I'll either have to walk carefully today or wear stylish plastic bags! tee hee
Last night was enjoyable. I had been sick in the afternoon, but after taking a hot shower and long nap, I felt better. By evening, I was up to sitting on the couch and reading a book. How nice! Mathew even made us supper. Poor guy. Ever since Thanksgiving weekend and eating 3 days of good meals, we haven't eaten anyhting good at home. Both of us have been ill. So, hopefully tonight it's time for a full, well balanced meal. Any ideas?
That's all for now.....until I get my pictures to upload! Have a wonderful snowy day!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Letter Writing Monday

18 Resons to write a card

Are you in the mood for writing a card to someone, but don't have a reason? Here are some good times to send a note. They.....
  1. Got admission to the school of their choice

  2. They appeared in the newspaper

  3. Won a contest or something

  4. Got their braces off

  5. Got a promotion

  6. Finished chemo

  7. Got a website

  8. Learned a new skill or craft

  9. Made the honor roll

  10. Landscaped a yard

  11. Payed off a mortgage

  12. Are remodelling their home

  13. Quit or are quitting smoking

  14. Published a book

  15. Overcame a phobia

  16. Had a baby

  17. Took a trip/got back from a trip

  18. Had a birthday!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I'm Thankful for....

I'm so thankful for the great example set by the adults in our church. Recently, we re-arranged the teaching schedule for Sunday morning children's church. Instead of having one lady teach for months and months, we now rotate teaching by couples. It's such a neat thing to know that our parents, both dads and moms, are willing to teach. I know not all have had much experience, and some have been out of the teaching loop for a while, but they are doing a GREAT job!

One of the neatest blessings I think, is that the men/dads/young men are willing to teach also. It's so important for the kids to have those role models even at a young age.

It's been fun hearing the kids sing choruses downstairs during class time and hear them excitedly run upstairs afterwards and tell all about it. It's been fun hearing about the effort and diligence being put by the teachers too. How they are putting in extra study time during their days to think of new ways to teach a story or things to do with the kids.

In Titus 2:7,8 it says:
" In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned.."
I'm so thankful for that example being set!

Monday, November 19, 2007


I don't know much about web sites and web pages, but I've slowly been trying to teach myself and read up on it. So, I thought I'd share with you some bits of stuff I'm learning about HTML codes - the way stuff works! I know Google blogging makes it really easy, I don't even have to know these codes anymore but it's interesting anyhow.

Here's the basics:

"HTML" is an acronym for HyperText Markup Language. It's a language or "code" that tells the computer how to display images and text on your computer screen. Just like with any code, there are key symbols that can help you "break the code." Here are some important symbols used all the time:
> the backward
" " quotes
\ slashes
_ underlines
= equal signs
Everything that appears in between these symbols is info like text (what you want to say and how it appears) or links (to another web page).

Here's an example:

It looks like this on your screen:

Read about HTML.

The "<" and "a" are called "tags" and everything in between is called a "tag name." So, everything you write, needs a "tag," that's a basic. Then, the "tag names" are specific to things like bold, italics, links, text, or a picture. For instance, if you would like to put a picture on your page, here is what you would write:

Do you see the "img" and "src" ? That is the "tag" for I Want an Image and the "blueribbon.gif" is the "tag name" for Here is a picture of a blue ribbon.
How about if you want a link to another web page or something?
Here is what you would type:

Okay, let's break it down:
< and the a is the "tag"
href= says This Is A Link
http:.... is the actual link or web address
"Abbi's blog" is the text that will appear (you won't see the http:.....)
the "forward and backward beaks" are the "end tags" or the code that says Here's Where We Stop.
Interesting huh! Okay, I think that's enough info for today. Now you know how to start. As I learn, I will try and share what I learn. (My goal is to be able to make my own header -with pictures- for my blog)
If you want to learn more, check out Davesite or jmarshal.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Letter Writing Friday

I love getting letters in the mail. It's so much more exciting than advertisments or junk mail! I also love writing letters. Here are some tips on how to write nice letters:

  • Be in a cheerful mood. One thing I've noticed is that, if I'm in a grump mood, my letters tend to reflect that. Same with when I am goofy, moody, sleepy, or cheerful.

  • Find some fun stationary. There are endless possibilities here. I've used blank paper with stamps, pressed flowers, and stickers. I've used personalized monogramed cards. I've used the odds and ends of gift stationary and saved it over the years (see pic above). I've made homemade cards. (See Abbi's post about cardmaking) You can be creative and use just about anything. My sister has used birch bark before!

  • Write clearly. Take the time to print or script nicely. It's alot easier to read for the recipient! If you don't like your handwriting, check out some books from the library or order some from a bookstore.

  • Ask questions. Make sure you ask some questions of the recipient too, "How are you?" "What did you do this week?" "What do you think about...." "Have you ever tried...."

  • Keep it personal. When you write letters, whether they are thank you notes or just friendly notices, mention things about yourself, your week, your gift (if it's a thank you), little things you find intersting, or how your family is doing. It makes it more personal than just a generic "Hi. How are you. I am fine. Thanks for the gift. Bye."

  • Post it. This is one of the most common problems in letter writing I think.....we forget to mail it! So, when you sit down to write, have the envelopes nearby, an updated address book (write in pencil or keep on computer), and a roll of stamps. Address the card imediately after you write it, and put a stamp on it. Some exceptions I've found are, 1. If I have more to enclose, I will not put a stamp on it yet (that helps me differentiate between the ones ready to go and not) 2. If I don't have the current address I'll put it in my letter holder and make a post-it note to get the address ASAP.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Veggie Menu

Since learning about the need to lower our cholesterol, I've been trying to make more vegetarian meals and less red meat. Here is what we ate last night and it was good!

  • Vegetarian Chilli
  • Cornbread

Here is how I made the cornbread:

Cornbread - adapted from Quaker Corn Meal box
1 1/4 cups flour
3/4 cup corn meal
1/8 cup sugar
2 t baking powder
1/2 t salt (optional)
1/2 cup skim milk
2 Tbl. oil + 1/2 cup applesauce
1 egg, beaten

Heat oven to 400F. Grease 8 or 9-inch baking pan. Combine dry ingredients. Stir in milk, oil and egg, mixing just until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake 20 to 25 minutes or until light golden brown and wooden pick inserted near center comes out clean. Serve warm. 9 servings

Here is how I made the chilli:

Vegetarian Chilli

  • 1/2 red onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp oil
  • 1 Tbl dried oregano
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp dried bay leaves (or 1 whole bay leaf)
  • 1 tsp chili powder (I added a bit too much!)
  • 14 oz can chopped tomatoes with juice
  • 1 cup frozen, shredded zucchini
  • 1 can chili beans

Saute the spices and onion, garlic. Add the tomatoes, zucchini, and beans. Boil for about 20 minutes, until all is hot and well mixed. Serve with cornbread.

(Other ingredients you could add.... chopped carrots, green peppers, mushrooms, celery and kidney beans)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Funny Cartoon

Here is a funny cartoon that is very appropiate for me around Thanksgiving time!

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Monday, November 12, 2007

A Riddle

What is more useful when it is broken?

Friday, November 9, 2007

Fun Board Games

Here is a list of some fun board, card, or other games I've played...what games do you like?

Games for a crowd

  1. Five Straight

  2. Ten High

  3. Catch Phrase

  4. Uno

  5. Black Magic

Games for 4-6 players

  1. Settlers of Catan

  2. Bohnanza

  3. Compatability

  4. Phase 10

Games for 2

  1. Lost Cities

  2. Five Straight

  3. Carsaconne

  4. Chess

Family Games

  1. Raise the Roof

  2. Phase 10

  3. State to State

  4. Hide and Seek in the dark (in the house)

Outdoor Games

  1. Capture the Flag

  2. Prisoner's Base

  3. Home Base

Computer Games

  1. Feeding Frenzy

  2. Bookworm

  3. Mahjong

Thursday, November 8, 2007

A taste of The Phantom Tollbooth

Here is part of one of my favorite children's books.....check it out from the library next time you are there, it makes a great family read!

"Time for the speeches," announced the king as the plates were again removed and everyone looked glum. "You first," he commanded, pointing to Milo.

"Your Majesty, ladies and gentlemen," started Milo timidly, "I would like to take this opportunity to say that in all the ----"

"That's quite enough," snapped the king. "Musn't talk all day."

"But I'd just begun," objected Milo.

"NEXT!" bellowed the king.

"Roast turkey, mashed potatoes, vanilla ice cream," recited the Humbug, bouncing up and down quickly.

"What a strange speech," thought Milo, for he'd heard many in the past and knew that they were supposed to be long and dull.

"Hamburgers, corn on the cob, chocolate pudding - p-u-d-d-i-n-g," said the Spelling Bee in his turn.

"Frankfurters, sour pickles, strawberry jam," shouted Officer Shrift from his chair. Since he was taller sitting than standing, he didn't bother to get up.

And so down the line it went, with each guest rising briefly, making a short speech, and then resuming his place. When everyone had finished, the king rose.

"Pate de foie gras, soupe a l'oignon, faisan sous cloche, salade endive, fromages et fruits et demi-tasse," he said carefully, and clapped his hands again.

The waiters reappeared immediately, carrying heavy, hot trays, which they set on the table. Each one contained the exact words spoken by the various guests, and they all began eating immediately with great gusto.

"Dig in," said the king, poking Milo with his elbow and looking disapprovingly at his plate. "I can't say that I think much of your choice."

"I didn't know that I was going to have to eat my words," objected Milo.

"Of course, of course, everyone here does," the king grunted. "You should have made a tastier speech....."

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Happy National Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds Day!!!

Today, November 7th, is National Bittersweet Chocolate with Almonds Day! So, what shall we do to celebrate? My suggestion, is make a lovely pan of warm, chocolate brownies with almonds & ice cream..... :)

Recently, I've been trying to learn about healthy cholesterol cooking. (I know, I know, what does that have to do with brownies and ice cream?! ...not much!)
Here is a list of foods that are recommended for high cholesterol levels...

  • almonds
  • walnuts
  • fish (esp trout and salmon)
  • apples (fruit in general)
  • flax seed
  • and obviously, less fatty foods

In an attempt at healthier cooking, I have modified my grochery list to include some brans and seeds, more fruits and vegetables, and less meats. I've also checked out a few interesting books from the library, including my favorite, "Meals for Good Health" by Karen Graham. I love the simplicity of the meal plans, and the pictures that are included! :)

Sunday, November 4, 2007


Here are 3 good reasons to memorize that I found the other day...

1. The Bible tells me so
Joshua 1:8 Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
Psalm 119:11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.

2. It is helpful
2 Timothy 3:16,17 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Psalm 19:7,8 The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.

3. It is God's words to me
Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Now, I just need to be consistent!!!!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

35 Things to Do

Here's some ideas I've read and collected over time that sound really fun....whether it's just you, a couple friends, or a whole group, I think you'll find some interesting ideas to do!

  1. Have a Sundae party. Buy several different flavors of ice cream, some toppings (hot fudge, sprinkles, etc.) and let people make their own sundaes.
  2. Have a waffle party where everyone brings their own topping
  3. Invite a bunch a friends over. Ask each couple or person to bring something to the party, like popcorn, candy, drinks, and a favorite scary movie (if they have one). It doesn't matter if you don't watch all the movies that night. Just be sure to take some breaks between movies so that people can meet with each other. Pass out pillows and blankets, so the guys can hide from the scary parts
  4. Invite several couples over to make cookies. When they're still warm, take them to the hospital or to an old folk's home
  5. Invite several couples to bring slides of a place to which they've traveled. Let each person tell about his/her special place and have refreshments with an international flavor
  6. Build stilts and go for a walk in the neighborhood
  7. Choose a topic of interest to the members of the group that requires some preparation. Ideas: Book review, spiritual discussion, political events, etc. Schedule monthly chats, with the host home to provide refreshments
  8. Cheer on a mutual friend. If the two of you have a mutual friend who is playing in a game or a concert at school, attend the performance together to cheer your friend on.
  9. Make a couple of pans of brownies. Then drive to various friends' houses and deliver a brownie or two to each friend and visit for a while. When it becomes too late to be visiting people, go home and finish off the brownies
  10. Attend an auction together. Look in the paper for events
  11. Plant a garden for someone. Make sure it's okay with them first
  12. Have a progressive fast-food dinner with soft drinks at one place, nachos at another, then burgers, fries, and sundaes, all at different restaurants
  13. Write down different favorite places to eat on individual pieces of paper and put them into a container. Then write down different meal courses (i.e. appetizer, soup, salad, main meal, dessert, etc.) on individual pieces of paper and put them into a second container. Then take turns, selecting first a location, then a course. You may have an appetizer at Baskin Robbins, soup at a Chinese restaurant, salad at McDonalds, main course at Taco Bell, dessert at Subway, etc.
    Have a picnic lunch on a floating dock
  14. Have a contest who can make the best tasting lunch using Ramen noodle soup as a "main" dish. Put a limit on buying additional ingredients. Share each others' creations
  15. Make homemade bread. Knead the dough together, then relax with a good book or watch a video while the dough rises, and while the bread is baking. Let the bread cool just enough, then enjoy hot bread with butter and jam
  16. Read scriptures or poetry around a fire. Bring flashlights
  17. Set up dinner on a hilltop or from a balcony with a view of the fireworks. Throw a swim party and have a picnic later. Then walk or drive to watch fireworks
  18. Get up early and go to a sunrise Easter service.
  19. Make a set of building blocks for a less fortunate child. Blocks can be made with scraps of wood. Have someone cut out various shapes on a table saw (don't do this yourself unless you have experience). Sand and paint the blocks. On a subsequent day, wrap the blocks in gift paper, put them on someone's porch, ring the doorbell, and run. If you want a really good feeling, swear each other to secrecy (don't tell anyone else about this act of service).
  20. Volunteer to assist in a community event, such as Special Olympics, March of Dimes, telethon, or festival
  21. Read to children at a hospital . When you act happy and enthusiastic, you will feel happy, and the children will reciprocate
  22. Get five or six couples together and paint a garage or a house for a neighbor or someone needy. Afterwards, roast hotdogs and sing songs around a fire in a park or in the mountains
  23. Make quilts for babies in less priviledged homes. A simple quilt can be made using a soft fabric, cutting 3 inch parallel lines (one inch apart) down both sides. Finish the quilt by tying knots on each strip of fabric.
  24. Take a tablecloth, silverware and candlestick and eat at MacDonald's
  25. Watch church videos together
  26. Help your younger brothers/sisters with their homework. Take them to the library to help do research on a specific subject.
  27. Take a trip to a homeless shelter and help serve food
  28. Bake cookies together and take them to a local retirement home, homeless shelter, police station or to someone you know who is ill or housebound
  29. Help a charity or nonprofit organization in your community
  30. Organize a spring clean up in your neighborhood. Find a neighbor who is single and could use some help. Be sure to bring refreshments for the helpers
  31. Make miniature smores with Golden Grahams, miniature marshmallows, and chocolate chips. Roast the marshmallow on a toothpick over a candle

    Some Winter Ideas:
  32. Shovel snow off of someone's sidewalk and driveway. It's best if you can do it before they wake up
  33. Construct igloos, then climb inside and drink hot chocolate.
    Build snow forts and have a snowball fight
  34. Wander around at Christmas time and look at all the lights then go somewhere for hot chocolate
  35. As a couple, identify a family that is struggling, either financially or emotionally and plan a secret "12 Days of Christmas" event. Each evening, drop off something (gifts, food, poems, baskets, etc.) for 12 days straight. Keep your giving a secret!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

When I am Bored

I've heard alot of people my age and younger say how frequently they are bored. I do agree, it happens, but I think with a little creativity and imagination, it should be rare!

Here are some things I like to do when I am bored:
* Go online and search Amazon or CBD for a new book to read
* Take a nap
* Make some cookies or bars
* Take a walk
* Look up strange holidays and celebrate
* Convince someone to celebrate with me
* Pet a cat
* Write a letter or email
* Make a list of things to do tomorrow
* Play a board game

For more ideas, check out
this link.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007



  • French Toast (make sure you grease the pan or it will do you think I know!)
  • Omlettes
  • Cold Cereal
  • Scrambled Eggs
  • Rice tortilla Wraps
  • Broccoli Casserole
  • Fluff Pankcakes (like popovers....delicious with fruit sauce!!!)
  • Muffins
  • Chunky Potatoes with creole seasoning
  • Hash Browns and Eggs
  • Pancakes
  • Cinnamon Rolls
  • Noodles....can use Raman Noodles and add fresh or frozen vegetables
  • Toast and fried eggs
  • Mixed Fruit
  • Potato Pancakes & Sausage


  • BLT's make a really nice and filling lunch
  • I like to make enough supper that I can use the leftovers for lunch the next day
  • One of my personal favorites is a bowl of granola in cold milk


  • Meatballs & Mashed Potatoes
  • Spaghetti, Garlic Bread, Fruit Salad
  • Broccoli Soup, French Bread
  • Homemade Rolls, Corn on the Cobb, Stew
  • Fried Fish, Rice, Salad
  • Egg Curry & Chapati (look up Indian recipies online)
  • Taco Hotdish, Strawberry Shakes
  • Chili & Cornbread
  • Stir Fries and rice or noodles
  • Tereaki Chicken and vegetable rice
  • Shish-Kababs (if you don't have a grill, just put them in the oven on broil for about 15 minutes)
  • BLTs, Home-made tomatoe soup, fried Zucchini

Monday, October 29, 2007

On Prayer

We have a plaque hanging on our wall that states : "Prayer Changes Things." Prayer is important. Prayer is critical. And prayer is a blessing and that plaque is a good daily reminder to me to make time to pray. But I also need to remember that it isn't the fact that I'M praying that changes things, but GOD behind the prayer. It is GOD who changes things, God's power that makes the impossible possible. Here are some helpful verses about prayer:
  • God Hears Us When We Pray
    Jeremiah 33:3
    Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.

    Psalm 4:3b The Lord listens when I call to Him.
  • As a Christian We Are Called to Pray
    Colossians 4:2
    Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.

    Philippians 4:6
    Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God

    1 Thessalonians 5:17
    Pray without ceasing.

    Ephesians 6:18-20
    And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel…pray that I may declare it fearlessly as I should.

  • Reasons to Pray
    Matthew 26:41
    Watch and pray so that you do not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak.

    Proverbs 3:16
    Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed

    Colossians 3:17
    Whatever you do, in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord giving thanks to God the Father through him.

    Hebrews 4:16
    Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

    James 1:5
    But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who give to all men generously and without reproach, and it shall be given him.

  • What to Pray For
    Philippians 1:9-11
    And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless until the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ – to the glory and praise of God.

    Ephesians 3:17-19
    And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saint, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge – that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

    Ephesians 1:18-19
    I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.

    Psalm 19:14
    May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be pleasing in your sight O Lord my Rock and my Redeemer.

    Colossians 1:9-12
    For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying about you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light.

  • How to Pray
    ~ Intelligently
    Ecclesiasties 5:2
    Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.

    ~ Sincerely
    Matthew 7:7-8
    Ask and it will be given to you, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks find; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

    Hebrews 4:16
    Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

    ~ Humbly
    Isaiah 59:1-2
    Surely the arm of the Lord is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.

    ~ Always
    1 Thessalonians 5:17
    Pray without ceasing.

    Romans 12:12
    Rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer. (NAS)
    Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. (NIV)

    ~ Thankfully
    Philippians 4:6
    Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Actual Newspaper Headlines

Dentist receives plaque
Girl becomes Methodist after delicate operation
Cemetary allows people to be buried by their pets
Local high school dropouts cut in half
Father of nine fined $100 for failing to stop
Kids make nutritious snacks
Hospital sued by seven foot doctors
Obesity study looks for larger test group

(Taken from "Who put my life on fast-forward?" Phil Callaway)

Monday, October 1, 2007

Travel Tips

  • Save space in your suitcase by stuffing boots and shoes with socks and small items.
  • Organize the small items in your suitcase with a small shoe box.
  • Bring an extra pillowcase for your dirty laundry, and an extra plastic grochery bag.
  • Pack dryer sheets in your suitcase and in your dirty laundry bag to keep down the smell.
  • Baby powder absorbs sweat on you when there is no time for a shower.
  • On tent camping trips, you can pack you clothes and pillow in a gallon tote or tub. It keeps stuff from getting wet.
  • Bring a hat, extra pair of socks, and mittens when tent camping in the fall.
  • Bring an extra pair of flip-flops for use in the shower

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Emily's Camping Essentials

  • Flashlight
  • Sleeping Bag w/ sheet liner
  • Stocking cap and wool socks
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Paper towels
  • Kleenex
  • Marshmallows, chocolate, and grahm crackers
  • Extra pair of shoes
  • Fingernail clippers
  • Clothspins and line
  • Plates, cups, silverware
  • Dish rag, drying towel
  • Beef stew
  • Can opener
  • Plastic bags
  • Pillow
  • Brush/conditioner/shampoo/soap
  • Tent
  • Camping Chair
  • Warm Jacket
  • Gloves
  • Gum
  • Water bottle
  • Good book
  • Extra pencil
  • Uno
  • Raincoat
  • Sunblock
  • Towels (2)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Tuesday Morning

Tuesday morning I woke up to a bad smell in the hallway. At first I thought it was the garbage, but we had just taken it out. So then I thought it was the can itself, but it was clean. I thought perhaps it was coming from the apartment next to us, but that didn't seem plausable either. I set out an air freshener and hoped it would go away while I made breakfast.
It didn't.
So then, I played "Investigator." I started in the kitchen, sniffing my way toward the smell. It led me into the hallway (which I had already known but ah well) and then close to the bathroom. "Ah ha," I thought, "it's here! But much to my chagrin, as I moved into the bathroom doorway the smell grew fainter. Turning around mystified, I stood in the hall, wondering if there was possibly something in the wall. I had ruled out the laundry room before, seeing as how it was just a pile of ironing to do and a waste basket filled with lint. But now as I stood in the doorway between the bathroom and the laundry room, it seemed my only choice. Much to my surprise, the smell grew stronger as I walked into the room! Puzzled, I wandered past the irnoning basket, past the wastebasket and then stopped embarrasedly in front of the washing machine. Slowly opening up the lid, I knew what I would find.....yup, there it was.....the wet smelly laundry that I had forgotten since yesterday morning to throw in the dryer! Whew, it smelled mighty musty! So, I set it on another wash cycle, determined not to make the same mistake again, I stayed around until it finished and quickly tossed it in the dryer before heading out to work.
Now I'm just hoping I remember to take it out of the dryer before next laundry day!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Unwelcome Vistors

It seems this summer, that the neighborhood insects have taken a liking to my house. It's a good thing I like bugs (or at least am not screamy) but I've definitely had my fill! I've found out that spiders think my front bay windows are the real "treat!" I've opened the shades quite a few times now to the soft, glistening of a new web. I'm afraid that the spider's home has become "fast food service" in the sense, they'd better catch their food fast because their web doesn't last very long! So now, my morning routine is sweeping my windows and front ceiling.

Last weekend I had to take drastic measures in my kitchen. I have a family (a quite large and extended family I'm sure with many cousins and aunts and uncles) of black ants that have made a trail through my kitchen. It's very handy for them that their vacationing takes them right past my cupboards and fridge but rather startling for me as I'm standing doing dishes! I read once that a way to repel ants is to sprinkle around some black peper. So, guess what my kitchen looked like for a day or so! *laugh* But it worked! (amidst all the sneezing!) It's a temorary fix at least until I can find a better way.

This morning I had a third visitor. (One to which I wasn't so hospitable!) I went to pick up my carry-all bag from the porch so I could take my books and papers to work but when I looked inside I had quite a surprise! There, staring calmly up at me (I'm not sure that he even registered I was there), was a large 1 inch, fat cricket! I wasn't quite as calm and quickly shook him outside, wondering what else could be awaiting me!

So now, I guess, I am the official Bug Remover. I even had a chance to practice my new trade at the office, when on seperate occasions a cricket and a grasshopper decided to hitchike on the back of our receptionist!

Here's a list of ways to keep Ant Infestation Down:

  • Getting rid of ants in your house:
  • Do the dishes regularly.
  • Wipe down your kitchen counters with bleach water every night.
  • Clean your room and pick up food wrappers.
  • Seal door sills, window sills, and mend broken screens.
  • Mop floors with bleach regularly.
  • Put food and leftovers (especially sweets) in proper containers.
    Take out the trash as often as possible

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Wednesday Night Lessons 101

Paul & Timothy
Text: Acts 15-16
1. Welcome Song
I found a new version of the "Books of the New Testament" on the CD "Bible Songs for Toddlers." I found out that I can borrow quite a few different CDs from our local library, so have ordered a few more for ideas.
Sang the song about 4 times, with actions. A few of the kids picked up on it pretty fast, but it has a lot of words in it so it will take a couple more weeks to know it.
2. Bible Time
Did a few more Bible drills, marked the book of Matthew in their Bibles with a blue bookmark to help them find it.
3. Story Time
Read Acts 15:22, Acts 15:40,41, and Acts 16:1-10 from the Message translation Bible. Broke the class into two parts to listen, using one half to listen for WHO went on a trip, and the other half to listen WHERE they went on a trip.
Brought in my suitcase for a visual aid. Talked just briefly about going on trips before starting the story.
4. Break Time
Had some issues with rowdy kids tonight. One thing worked fairly well, if I can just practice it more, is letting them know a break time is coming up when they will be allowed to move around, talk, get a drink, etc but during story time it's time to listen. I've found out it helps the more active kids to have a schedule that is regular so they know what to look forward to and when to sit still and when they can move. I haven't perfected it yet, but I think it helps.
5. Mailbox
Tonight I had only 3 letters in the mailbox (there were 5 kids). Two letters that hadn't been picked up by absent kids, and one birthday card. In the birthday card I had the beginning of the activity for tonight.
6. Activity
Treasure Hunt!
I made 5 clues on yellow slips of paper that I hid before class around the room. While the birthday boy can't read yet, it was his job to lead the others around. The others could help him read the clue, but they weren't allowed to touch or find the next one, only help. The clues led them to our Memory Verse bulletin board, and after practicing it a few times and reminding them about the paper party coming up, I gave them the last clue which led to a snack of cupcakes in the fridge.
7. Craft
We made twirling puppets out of tag-board and straws. They were supposed to be Timothy.

Note: This week I had a little difficulty with the older students not listening. One idea for next week is, when I ask them a question and they purposely don't know the answer, to move on quickly to another student and not give that one any more attention than necessary. "I'm sorry you don't know the answer.....Penny, how about you tell me the answer?"

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Wednesday Night Lessons 101

Story of Saul/Paul
Text: Acts 9:1-28
1. Welcome song
* Brought my boombox and played "If You're Happy and You Know It Clap Your Hands...."
* Made sure to welcome each kid by name.
2. Bible time
I have a "Treasure Box" decorated up in which I keep enough children's Bibles for each kid in the class. At this time, I tell them, "It's time to use our Bibles! Go and grab one that you want to use from the treasure box!" I have one picture Bible I keep in there for the non-reader in my class. Once they all have their Bibles, I have them sit down at the table and we do some Bible drills (see below).
I have drawn on our blackboard a simple open book marked with Old Testament half and New Testament half. I also have written out MATTHEW, MARK, LUKE, JOHN. At this point in the lesson I go over these words with them.

3. Story Time
* I introduced ACTS to them. (it comes after John), showed it to them in their Bibles, and mention that is where our story comes from today.
* I read the story to them, and brought my big flashlight in for special effects.
4. Break Time
* The kids have been pretty ant-sy the past couple of weeks, so I introduced a "break time" into our 45 min class time. I allowed them to stand up and move around, talk to each other, play around etc while I prepared the snack and craft materials.
5. Snack time
* Mystery bags (paper bags with question marks all over them). "Just like Paul couldn't see, we can't see what our snack is....put your hand in the bag and see if you can guess without using your eyes!" (Had cheese puffs)
* Prayed before eating
6. Memory verse review
* This month our goal is to memorize Galations 5:13 and John 3:16. If everyone in the class gets it done, I've promised a paper party at my house for them all.
* I had written John 3:16 on the 2nd blackboard in big colorful chalk last week. This week, I printed out word pictures and glued them to small pieces of flannel. Then, I arranged them on the flannel board and we read them out loud as a class. After a couple times, I removed one of the pictures and they tried to say the whole thing again. It worked really well. Sample Here
7. Mailbox
* I created a carboard mailbox out of a Kleenex box, construction paper, and stickers. This I hung from the ceiling (high enough so they can't really reach it but I can). I wrote a card to each student and put it in the box. At this time we "distributed" the mail. Not all the kids were there, so I left the extra cards in the box for next week.
8. Close
* We reviewed the lesson about Paul, and our Galatians 3:15 verse. Then, I briefly told them about what to look forward to next weeks class. I had them help me clean up/put away the Bibles. Then we went out in the backyard and played Pom-Pom-Pull-Away until their parents were ready to go.

Bible Drills:
* "The Bible is known as the 'Sword of the Spirit'
* Have the kids sit on their Bibles and then I say...."Ready?" "Draw your swords!" (they lift them above their heads) "Find the book of Psalms.." (we also know Genesis, Matthew, and are learning how to find simple chapters and verses) "GO!" (at which point, they drop their Bibles down to the table and see who can find it first.)


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