Sunday, December 27, 2009

Other Blog

I have temporarily abandoned this blog until I figure out what to do with it. You can find my latest posts at

Happy New Year!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

His Beloved

Jesus pursues His beloved bride and fights for her. Jesus paid the untimate price for her and He is coming again.

This is a prayer from Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge from chapter 11 Warrior Princess.

I now put on with thanks the armor which You have provided for me-girding myself with the belt of truth; first my need to be pursued and fought for. Thank You for daily pursuing me and fighting for me as well.

I also gird up my desire to be irreplaceable in a grand scheme of Yours. You have placed this desire within me and I wrap Your truth around it, in hope of what You will do. Grant me eyes to see each day in light of Your activity, to live in the big-ness of Your story.

I gird up my desire to offer life through my gifting, the beauty You have bestowed on me. I ask You to continue to reveal and confirm what You desire to do through me and all You have given me. I trust that You have called me by name and have given me a love, a beauty, a gift to pour out on my family, my friends, and those You bring to me. May this day be an offering of love poured out before You on the alter of my life."

Chapter 8
Chapter 7
Chapter 6
Chapter 5
Chapter 4
Chapter 3
Chapter 2b
Chapter 2
Chapter 1

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Veteran's Day

Freedom is not free! Prayer and thanks to all the men and women who serve and have served our country.

Teach your children well!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Coconut Chicken Soup

On this cold fall evening we had Coconut Chicken Soup.

For the recipe

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sourdough Biscuits

A friend gave me a recipe for Sourdough Biscuits and my family liked them. Then I tried making them in my Bosch and now they love them. When I made them before the consistency was crumbly like one would expect buscuits to be. Made in the Bosch they were more like something out of a can (not sure my kids even know what biscuits out of a can taste like) We had biscuits with Chicken-A-La-King the first night, then biscuits with butter for breakfast the next day, and biscuit pizza's for lunch. I plan to make these for Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Sourdough Biscuits

1 1/2 cups unbleached flour
1 1/2 cups spelt flour
2 cups sourdough starter
2 tsp sucanat
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 tsp Real salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1/3 cup buttermilk

In a plastic bowl mix 1 cup unbeached flour, 1 cup spelt flour and 2 cups sourdough starter.(I put it right in the Bosch and stir with a spatula not the metal bar) Leave for 7 to 12 hours. Mix the remaining flours with the sucanat, baking powder, baking soda, and salt and add them to the bowl. Cut in the butter. Blend lightly. Add the buttermilk slowly until the mixture is right for rolling. You might need to add more flour if it is too wet.

Roll out into 1/2 inch thickness on a floured surface. Dip biscuit cutter in flour then cut biscuits. Place on buttered baking pan. Brush with melted butter. Let rise for 1 hour.

Biscuits Rising

Bake at 375 for 20-25 min.

These pictures are this recipe doubled so I would have lots on hand to feed hungry mouths. For more recipes see

Friday, October 23, 2009

Scrapbook Saturday

Scrapbooking, Notebooking, Lapbooking

Scrapbooking is a great way for kids to keep track of what they have been doing. My daughter and I started scrapbooking when she was about 11. She saved little ticket stubs and party favors to put in her book. It gave Lindsey something to create and keep for her own. Scrapbooking kept her busy when she wanted something to do. Lindsey was my active child who needed directed activities.

Later, I learned how much this design, writing, and art was teaching her organizational skills and critical thinking.

When I heard about notebooking and lapbooking then I incorporated these ideas in presenting my end of the year homeschool portfolios. Portfolios are not the only choice of reporting in our state but I loved the idea of this way of keeping my child's work organized. And my child gets to help design and create the book.

Record keeping can be overwhelming if left until the end of the year. The kids and I can scrapbook regularly during the year and keep up with their portfolio.
So now I teach with record keeping in mind.

When the kids were younger I would get to the end of the year and think "what do I have to show that we did in this subject?" Since learning in homeschool is a way of life and not just something you do from 8am - 3pm then this could be hard to record. Taking pictures helps.

Now (after 14 years of schooling, I am starting to get the hang of it) I plan all year for a nice portfolio. No more scrambling at the last minute It gives my child a chance to see what they have done all year and present it in a organized manner to show to grandparents and other interested people. They learn to show their best work and not keep every single paper. It gives them a feeling of accomplishment and reward for all their effort.

For more information on parenting active children Nourish Your Children

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sourdough Oatmeal Cookies

Looking for a healthy recipe for snacks that will be good for you and your kids. Try these cookies.

Sourdough Oatmeal Cookies

2 sticks butter
1 1/2 cup of Rapadura (or Sucanat)
2 c. thick sourdough batter
(add 1 c. flour to 1 c. sourdough and let sit overnight)
3 c. rolled oats
1 1/2 c. spelt flour (or 1/2 white and 1/2 whole grain)
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
2 cups of crispy nuts, raisins, or chocolate chips

Cream sugar, shortening, and butter. Add sourdough and rolled oats. Combine flour with cinnamon and baking soda. Add to mix. Mix well and chill in refrigerator for 7 to 12 hours. The longer you chill it the more sour it will be. You want the sourdough to break down and neutralize phytic acid in the grains so they will be more easily digested.

Add nuts, raisins, or chips. Drop by teaspoon onto a cookie sheet. Bake @350 for 15 min.

You can also omit the cinnamon and nuts and roll out into shapes. For a natural frosting I use cream cheese sweetened with honey. Eat right away, this frosting won't last long.

I adapted this recipe from one that a friend gave years ago out of her grandmother's cookbook.

For more recipies that would fall in line with Weston A. Price Foundation and his findings visit "my list of recipes"


This is a picture of our new compost bins. We went with the three sections. For the last few years we just had one pile where we put all of our kitchen scraps. In the fall and spring when my dh would till, he would just spread out the contents and till them into the garden. This caused several problems -
1. The pieces were too big to till.
2. Objects did not break down.
3. The pile smelled bad.
4. It attracted bugs and animals.
5. Weed seeds still alive.

Now we are going to improve our composting. Dh got a load of manure from a local organic farmer. It was very important to me not to be putting chemicals into our compost pile/garden.

So today we were raking leaves to put a leaf layer on the compost pile...

...and the kids had fun jumping in it.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Frugal Friday Find

Will's Quill by Don Freeman
I found this wonderful children's book at a discount store for under $3. The pictures are beautiful.
It is a cute story about a lost goose named Will who finds a friend and wants to give something back in return for a kind act. The friend is William Shakespeare.
We happen to be studying this time peroid in history. This book gives us a glimpse of what life in London might have looked like during this period.
Learning with Joy
The kids will learn more from this "living book" than from many pages of a history text. Children will enjoy reading this book over and over again.
What is a Living Book?
A living book is a book written in story form with pictures and information accurate to the time period and subject. These books draw a child into the story and capture their interest. If after the first page the child pleads to hear more then you know you have a "living book."
I learned about Living Books from Charlotte Mason's books. For a shorter version of Charlotte Mason's works - A Charlotte Mason Companion: Personal Reflections on The Gentle Art of Learning by Karen Andreola
For more about raising children Nourish Your Children

Friday, October 2, 2009

New Kittens

Mama kitty is the proud mother of six baby kittens. One kitten is black and five are pure white like their mama.
Pets teach real life lessons. Now this is fun science!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Young Love - or NOT

Today I talked to a mom about her son who is 9 years old. He was at the Y and a little girl came up to him and said “do you have a girlfriend?”

He answered plainly, “No.”
“I’ll be your girlfriend.”
“No, you won’t.”
“Yes, I will. YES, I WILL!” the girl yelled.
The boy walked away in wonder.

I saw a 10 year old girl in a store. An older teenage girl was teasing her. “Who’s your boyfriend? Who’s your boyfriend? I know you like someone. Tell me, tell me.”
I felt so sad for this little girl. What a pressure at that age! (at any age for that matter) She doesn’t need a boyfriend. She is being taught that her value and worth is dependant on who is her boyfriend.

When I was a young mother I thought this kind of teasing was cute and harmless. Then I realized what message it was sending. “You are supposed to have a boyfriend. Something must be wrong with you if you don’t.”

If girls could see themselves as God sees them, care more about what God thinks than anyone else, they wouldn’t think they needed a boyfriend. "...for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:marvellous are thy works..." Ps 139:14

What is cute about two 10 year olds ‘going steady’? If they are going steady at 10, kissing is right around the corner. And then what is that girl going to have to do to keep her guy.

Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity. 1 Tim 4:12

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Field Trip

A Fun Day at the Zoo!

We could get very close to the animals. The deer were looking right at us.

I saw animals that I have never seen or heard of before. Like the beautiful Rainbow Parrot. My picture was blurry so now I have to go back to the zoo to get another picture.

My youngest two children liked the aquarium. The moon jellies were beautiful.

This is a Bat-eared Fox.

Can anyone guess which zoo we visited?

Nourish Your Children

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Sauerkraut Salad

What do I do with all this sauerkraut I lacto-fermented?

Sauerkraut Salad

2 large tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 small onion, diced
1 cucumber, sliced thin
1 green pepper, chopped
2 banana peppers, chopped (raw or pickled)
1/2 cup lacto-fermented sauerkraut

Mix together and serve immediately. 4-6 servings

You can also splash with your own homemade Italian Salad Dressing. If you like creamy, add a dollop of Homemade Mayonnaise.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Tangy Honey Dipping Sauce

Because I cannot find any BBQ Sauce at the store without High Fructose Corn Syrup or Excitotoxins, I decided to try my own sauce with ingredients fresh from my garden.

1 peck tomatoes, peeled
2 Bell Peppers, seeded and diced
3-5 Jalapenos, seeded and diced
1 onion, chopped
4 Tablespoons butter
1 clove garlic
1 Tablespoon Blackstrap Molasses
1 cup Honey
1 teaspoon Real Mineral Salt

Saute the peppers, jalapenos, onions, and garlic in butter until soft. Puree in blender. Also puree the peck of tomatoes. Bring to a boil and simmer until mixture has reduced to 1/2 the amount (this took all day). Remove from heat. Add the honey, molasses, and salt. Stir until mixed. Makes about 3 quarts.

My kids like to have something to dip their leftover chicken or beef roast. I also tried warming the meat, mixing the dip, and serving on buns. It was a hit. Now I need to make more.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Don't Tell Them It's Ketchup

I harvested two buckets of tomato's from my garden that needed to be used. I froze as many containers of tomato sauce as would fit into my freezer. Now what?

I decided to try lacto-fermented ketchup. That is a stretch for me. I have never made ketchup before and I didn't have a recipe using fresh ingredients.

I boiled a pot of water to remove the tomato skins. I put the skinless tomatoes in the blender and poured them into a large pot. They cooked all day and reduced to about 1/3 of the original amount. I added 1 cup of maple syrup, onion powder, and salt. After it cooled to room temperature, I added 1/4 cup of whey, poured into glass jars, and let them sit at room temperature for 48 hours before transferring to the refrigerator.

My kids actually ate it. Whew! They dipped their chicken in it, ate it with hamburgers, and put it on their fried potatoes. I also made Sloppy Joe's with it and they loved it. I didn't tell them it was ketchup. I called it Tomato Dipping Sauce. I didn't want them to have ketchup in their mind when they tried it because this is not like your bottled ketchup. It reminded me of the ketchup in Europe. It actually tastes like tomatoes.

Monday, August 31, 2009

On to College

Starting our homeschool year notes the end of an era and a new beginning. After 13+ years of homeschool we graduated our oldest child. She will be attending college next week to continue her study of music. Things will be a lot quieter around here, even though she is just commuting.

I thank God for these years we have had together: the hours of talking and laughing. The years have flown past in a blink.

When my dd was 4 years old, she was very active, busy, and bouncy. I wanted to put her in preschool because I knew she was ready to learn, and I wanted the peace and quiet. I started looking for preschools in the area, asking other moms what they do.

One mom said to me, "why don't you homeschool?"

"What is that?" I replied, "What do you do? How does it work?"

This kind mother of 4 took time out of her schedule to show me her school room and tell me all about homeschooling. Soon I found several other moms who homeschool.

I decided to try it for at least preschool. My dd loved it. I started spending quality time with her, reading and doing crafts. She settled down and seemed happier. I was amazed at the changes in our home.

The next year, when faced with the decision to put her in Kindergarten, I chose to continue homeschooling especially since the state in which we lived had full day Kindergarten.

She is beautiful young woman who loves the Lord and wants to follow Him. I am so thankful someone introduced me to homeschooling.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Writing Lessons

Lori Verstegan has done it again. She provides 27 writing lessons for moms & teachers who are studying or teaching medieval history. One of the coolest things about Lori’s writing lessons is it goes chronologically through the program. In other words, it begins with Augustine & Mohammed, runs thorugh Charlemagne, Knights, King Arthur and ends with the Magna Charta.

Medieval History Based Writing Lessons
July 29, 2009 10:13 am Kerry Curriculum Connection, History, Homeschooling, Writing Lori Verstegan has done it again. She provides 27 writing lessons for moms & teachers who are studying or teaching medieval history. One of the coolest things about Lori’s writing lessons is it goes chronologically through the program. In other words, it begins with Augustine & Mohammed, runs thorugh Charlemagne, Knights, King Arthur and ends with the Magna Charta.

Most lessons begin with activities to teach a stylistic technique or writing structure. These vary from strong verbs to show emotions to topic sentences/clinchers to similes. An overview of the lesson is provided, as well as a step-by-step (EASY TO FOLLOW) lesson plan.

Medieval History Writing Lessons are just another excellent supplement to Teaching Writing: Structure & Style. Lori provides 1-4 lessons for each of TWSS (IEW’s Teaching Writing) units thus covering stories, reports, formal essays, critiques and creative writing. Checklists are provided for both the teacher & student.

So you’re wondering what ages can use Medieval History-Based Writing Lessons?

Glad you asked because Lori has thought of everything. In her easy-to-follow lessons, she separates her instructions for elementary (4th-6th grade) from junior high. To help teach different ages of students, different checklists & assignments are given.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Marketing Webinars

Marketing Webinars - The Greatest Untapped Secret on the Internet
by Stephen Beck

Do you want to know the number one secret to my success on the internet? It is an incredible tool called marketing webinars. Webinars are basically an online seminar. I use webinars to get more sales, get them day in and day out, and get them automatically. By using a business webinar effectively, you can dominate your niche and reap the rewards. That is how people sell tremendous amounts of products and services on the internet.

Both offline and online business are using webinars. Video is here to stay. A webinar is really just controlled television. It gives people information in the way they are used to finding it, which is on the television.

The powerful thing about marketing webinars is that you can sell one to many, instead of selling one to one. That is a key part of webinars. This also frees up your time to do more of what you enjoy.

Imagine getting people on a business webinar and only spending your marketing - direct marketing, direct mail, or phone calls, or appointment setters - on the people who have actually raised their hand and hung in with you for a sixty minute webinar. That would be a pretty big pre-qualification.

Webinars allow you to get in front of a lot of people, having a 1-100, 1-500 or even 1-1000 ratio. The location does not matter. You can reach people all over the world! In essence, you can get people to raise their hand about your topic, and then spend your marketing effort and dollars on them.

One of the greatest things about webinars is that you can get the attention of your potential customers and keep it as long as necessary to make the sale. This is because webinars are very interactive. With webinars, you can create an event and give them a reason to buy now, as opposed to tomorrow, or next week, or next month, or even next year.

Without a doubt, marketing webinars are an incredible tool and worthy of much more attention than they get. Webinars have really transformed my business and I truly believe that they have the potential to transform yours.

Stephen Beck explains how to use a marketing webinars to explode your sales. Get Wildly Wealthy with Webinars

Monday, August 3, 2009

10 Things I Love About Camping

1. No TV, computer, or phone

2. Making Memories

3. New Discoveries - like canoeing for the first time.

4. The Beautiful outdoors

5. Quiet time to be alone with God

6. Not having 100 things to do

7. 1 on 1, face to face time with my kids

8. Making friends with complete strangers

9. Living simply (at least for a few days)

10. Hearing my 6 year old say, "I love this day."

Nourish Your Children

Friday, July 31, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 8

Welcome back to summer reading book club Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul by John & Stasi Eldredge. This week we are finishing Chapter 8
Beauty to Unveil.

The author’s say that “the essence of a man is Strength” in the image of our Warrior God. The essence of Woman is Beauty in the image of a Captivating God.

“Every woman possesses a captivating beauty.” Woman are not problems to be solved but mysteries to be enjoyed.

Beauty Flows from a Heart at Rest
True beauty is a woman at rest. He will quiet you with His love. Zeph. 3:17 Trusting in God calms her and those around her. She gives a gift of her presence releasing tension and pressure.

Keep asking Jesus to show you your beauty and what He thinks of you as a woman.

Beauty is Inviting
Proverbs talks about two women – Lady Folly and Lady Wisdom. Both are lovely and inviting. One is the door to death and the other is the way to Life and peace.

A woman striving invites other to strive. A woman hiding pushes others away. A controlling woman makes others feel unsafe in their presence.

Offer Beauty
To be vulnerable might not feel safe but it will deepen your relationships. Share yourself and be enjoyed. Offer mercy.

In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust is your strength. Isa. 30:15

As women we have been through some things. Our hearts have enlarged by suffering. Like David, we can go through a desolate valley and find the place of springs. Ps 84:6

Cultivating Beauty
A gardens beauty does not diminish with age, neither does a woman’s. Tend your garden. Songs 1:6 Take time to grow in relationship with Jesus. Take time to be at rest.

“Beauty is a quality of the soul that expresses itself in the visible world.”

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Grammar - LOL

What is this I hear, laughter coming from the computer room? The kids learning grammar and having a great time. Now Mad Libs is online. How fun! Even my 7 year old can play by clicking on suggested words. Give it a try!

Thanks for the tip Ten O'clock Scholar!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Family Reunion

Last week my brother and sister were visiting from out of state with their families. The kids had a great time visiting with their cousins. My youngest child is 6 years old, while my brother's children are 4 and 2. It was great for Gabriel to be one of the "older" kids. It gave him a chance to see the other side.

The adult crowd made a change this year. We were all on a health kick. Instead of sitting around and talking for hours like usual, we took the kids to the park and walked most evenings. Everyone who took turns cooking had healthy meals in mind. I got to show my sister-in-law how to make whole grain sourdough bread. We exchanged low-carb recipes. No one made any desserts. Last year I gained 5 lbs. this year I lost weight. What a nice change!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

College Professor Critiques Homeschoolers
copyright 2009 by Greg Landry, M.S.

I teach sophomore through senior level college
students - most of them are "pre-professional"
students. They are preparing to go to medical
school, dental school, physical therapy school,

As a generalization, I've noticed certain
characteristics common in my students who were
homeschooled. Some of these are desirable,
some not.

Desirable characteristics:

1. They are independent learners and do a great
job of taking initiative and being responsible
for learning. They don't have to be "spoon fed"
as many students do. This gives them an advantage
at two specific points in their education;
early in college and in graduate education.

2. They handle classroom social situations
(interactions with their piers and professors)
very well. In general, my homeschooled students
are a pleasure to have in class. They greet me
when the enter the class, initiate conversations
when appropriate, and they don't hesitate to
ask good questions. Most of my students do
none of these.

3. They are serious about their education and
that's very obvious in their attitude,
preparedness, and grades.

Areas where homeschooled students can improve:

1. They come to college less prepared in the
sciences than their schooled counterparts -
sometimes far less prepared. This can be
especially troublesome for pre-professional
students who need to maintain a high grade
point average from the very beginning.

2. They come to college without sufficient
test-taking experience, particularly with
timed tests. Many homeschooled students have a
high level of anxiety when it comes to taking
timed tests.

My advice to homeschooling parents:

1. If your child is even possibly college
bound and interested in the sciences, make
sure that they have a solid foundation of
science in the high school years.

2. Begin giving timed tests by 7th or 8th grade.
I think it is a disservice to not give students
timed tests. They tend to focus better and score
higher on timed tests, and, they are far better
prepared for college and graduate education if
they've taken timed tests throughout the high
school years.

In the earlier years the timed tests should allow
ample time to complete the test as long as the
student is working steadily. The objective is for
them to know it's timed yet not to feel a time
pressure. This helps students to be comfortable
taking timed tests and develops confidence in
their test-taking abilities.

Greg Landry is a 14 year veteran homeschool dad
and college professor. He also teaches one and
two semester online science classes, and offers
free 45 minute online seminars..


Friday, July 17, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 7


I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you. Jeremiah 31:3

What kind of relationship are you looking for with God? What kind of relationship is He looking for with you?

The Bible talks about several metaphors – He is the potter, we are the clay.
He is the Shepherd, we described are sheep. Master/servant, father/child.
All these are stepping up into greater intimacy to Bridegroom.

What does the bridegroom paradigm make you think?

Romance, giving yourself completely to the one you love?

He has been wooing us all along.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Monday, July 13, 2009

What's Now! - Kombucha

It looks like Kombucha is now the hottest, latest trend. In the June issue of InStyle magazine page 55 is the What's Now, your summer must list. #1 is the drink Kombucha. They mention several flavors - Camu Camu, Yumberry, and Goji Berry of GT's new botanical drinks. They recommend tucking a chilled one in your beach bag or work tote.

You'll have to check it out the next time you are at Whole Foods priced at $3-$4 dollars each. Kombucha is much cheaper to make.

Some of us have been drinking a delicious, healthy, probiotic drink for years. Who knew it would be so popular?

Friday, July 10, 2009

Zucchini Harvest

Finally, I could harvest some zucchini from my garden after 3 plants dying. I have been watering faithfully through this drought. Three of the plants just shriveled up and died. A friend came over and looked at the plants. He saw a worm hole in the stock. This indicates the indwelling of a Squash Vine Borer, a large white worm with a brown head.

I sprinkled my vine plants with Diatomaceous Earth. Hopefully, the other two plants can be saved.

Meanwhile, I'll be cooking up my favorite zucchini dishes. Zucchini Fritters, Zucchini Bread with Chocolate Chips, Zucchini Pizza Crust, and of course, Fried Zucchini.

What are your families favorite Zucchini recipes?

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 6

Healing the Wound
This chapter from the book Captivating: Unveiling the Mysteries of a Woman's Soul goes through steps to bring healing.

Jesus wants you to be totally free and healed. Jesus came to heal the brokenhearted, free the captives, comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve. That includes you. You matter.

Let Him be your defender. You don’t have to defend yourself.

Turn from the Ways You’ve Sought to Save Yourself.
We have put up wall and barriers to protect ourselves from further hurt. Don’t keep out the One who wants to save you.

Invite Him In
Behold, I stand at the door, and knock. If anyone hears My voice, and opens the door, I will come in… Rev. 3:20 NKJV He waits for you.

Renounce the Agreements You’ve Made
We have believed lies. Those messages felt true when inflicted with pain. We must release them and unlock the door to Jesus.

Cry It Out
Women spend so much energy trying to “keep it together”. No wonder we are exhausted. Crying is a release.

Forgive – It’s a choice, not a feeling.
Forgiveness does not say that the wounding was okay. The hurt was wrong. You release that person over to God.

Ask Jesus to Heal You
He can release your heart from captivity.

Let Him Father You and Answer Your Questions
The Lord delights in you. Begin a new relationship with Him.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Why Lacto-Fermentation?

Lacto-fermenting retains the nutritional value of the food plus encourages growth of “friendly bacteria” probiotics. Heating destroys both.

So is a condiment just for taste? We choose condiments that add value to the meal, loaded with digestive enzymes and nutrients.

Fight bad bacteria in the body
Boost immune function
Normalize the acidity of the stomach.
Help in digestion especially of proteins
Help with nutrient absorption
…and more.

Bacterium out number the cells in your body 20 to 1. These can be good bugs or bad bugs. The war rages continually in your gut. Your lower intestine needs about 85% good bacteria and 15% unfriendly bacteria. Sadly, most people have this reversed.

Traditionally people ate large amounts of friendly bacteria – fresh foods off the vine and through their preservation process of lacto-fermentation, including the preservation of some meats, dairy, fruits, and vegetables.

This information was survival for our ancestors. Maybe they knew something we could learn from?

Nourish Your Child

Monday, June 29, 2009


This is my first jar of pickles for this year. Yeah! I actually have cucumbers and dill ready in my garden at the same time. Lacto-fermenting is great for pickling just one jar at a time. When I can pickles I have to wait until I have 3 lbs of cucumbers ready at the same time. Plus I have to be available to can. And have all the other necessary ingredients ready, including jars and new lids.

Someone told me that my pickles were the only crispy homemade pickles they had ever tasted. I attribute my success to these tips.

1. Pick cucumbers in the morning and use right away
2. Use a fresh head of dill in the jar

What works for you?


Friday, June 26, 2009

Forest of Dill

Forest of Dill
I love to grow dill. I make my own pickles- lacto-fermented. Also good for Dilly Dip and Garlic Dill Potatoes.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 5

Welcome back to our summer book reading of Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman’s Soul by John & Stasi Eldredge. This week we are discussing chapter 5 titled
A Special Hatred. Feel free to read and comment, even if you don’t have the book.

In this chapter Stasi tells her own painful story. She was wounded by her father and turned to alcohol, drugs, and men to fill the empty space. This path brought only more wounding, reinforcing the messages from her childhood.

“Hide your heart. You are a disappointment. You are worthless. No one cares. No one wants to care. You are alone.”

Do any of these messages ring true in your heart and mind?

Beauty is dangerous
So many women have been assaulted, beaten, raped, controlled. Young woman being sold into sex slavery. Baby girls being left to die.

Where does such hatred come from?

“Eph 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

Lucifer was created beautiful. In his own beauty, pride entered in. Now the Evil One hates beauty and tries to destroy it – especially Eve and her daughters.

“You won’t understand your life as a woman until you understand this:

You are passionately loved by the God of the universe.
You are passionately hated by His Enemy.

…for there is One greater than your Enemy. One who has sought you out from the beginning of time. He has come to heal your broken heart and restore your feminine soul.”

My thoughts
My youthful beauty was dangerous because I was so naive. And I was assaulted. I cried through this chapter. It never occurred to me the spiritual battle of the Devil trying to destroy femininity. His lies and deceit like Wormtongue.

God has been in the process of healing my heart all these years. It has been one layer after another, reaffirming His perfect love for me.

Your Turn
Where has your emptiness and longing led you?
What has God rescued you from?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 4


These words are razors to my wounded heart. – William Shakespeare

Since we live in a fallen world, every person has some sort of wounding. There are no perfect parents. Some have been hurt more than others. When a person responds out of a place of wounding, it hurts others. It can be a devastating blow from generation to generation. A destructive cycle of wounding.

Wounded hearts can allow shame to enter. Shame that causes us to look away or to hide. A feeling that if someone really knew us, we would be abandoned.

Hurt causes people to make vows that wall us off from love and trust in order to protect ourselves from further wounding. This is an unholy alliance with pain that keeps us from perfect love. Perfect love is from God.

1Jn 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
1Jn 4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

What vows have you made to protect yourself?
Are you repeating a destructive pattern of thinking?

God is greater than any pain, wound, or hurt. God is longing to love you more perfectly. Let Him in.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 3

Haunted By A Question

Eve – What Happened?
All that beauty, romance, and adventure sounds interesting but most of us are piled under loads of laundry. Real life is more like routine, chores, and screaming kids. Diets, busyness, self-improvement, activities. We hide or give up.

Our husbands are hiding in their cave wondering. Do I have what it takes?

The question girls ask is – Am I lovely? Girls want to be loved, delighted in. Sadly, many have given up.

Dominating women
Some women choose to dominate their world and control it, refusing to be vulnerable.

Desolate women
Some women are far too vulnerable, desolate and needy.

Whatever path you have chosen to fill the empty space, the ache, the loneness, only God can satisfy. Nothing on earth can take the place of relationship with our Heavenly Father. No amount of money, food, new clothes, friends, a new guy, whatever the world has to offer will never resolve the deeper issues of our souls.

Find your rest in God.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Summer Reading – Captivating – Chapter 2b


God’s creation is beautiful. Look at the flowers and trees, mountains and valleys, sunrises and sunsets.

The apostle John describes the beauty he sees around the throne in Revelation.

Rev 4:3 And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.
Rev 4:6 And before the throne there was a sea of glass like unto crystal…….

The beauty of God’s creation speaks. When my father passed away, we happened to be visiting at the ocean. In my sadness, I sat and took in the beauty and vastness of God’s ocean. It spoke to me that God was so much bigger than me or my grief. I was comforted.

A Mystery

Every woman has a beauty to unveil because you were created in the image of God. This kind of beauty you cannot find in a salon or in plastic surgery because it is the essence of who you are. Unique only to you, remaining a mystery until sought out.

Pro 25:2 It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.

The Gory of God

“Beauty says, There is glory calling to you. And if there is glory, then there is a source of glory. What great goodness could possibly have created this?...Beauty draws us to God.”

Not the world’s plastic beauty. But the experience of who you are. What makes you laugh or smile, your thoughts, your heart, the way you move, your ideals, the sparkle in your eyes…

When I look in the mirror I see wrinkles, bulges, and an old hairstyle. When my children look at me they see the mother who loves them. When my husband looks at me he sees years of intimacy and togetherness, trials and triumphs. When my friends look at me they see a shared secret or memory.

“There is something uniquely magnificent and powerful about a woman. We tried to reveal the immeasurable dignity, the holiness of your feminine heart by showing that it is God who longs for Romance; it is God who longs to be our ezer; it is God who reveals beauty essential to life. You are the image bearer of this God. That is why you long for these things too.”

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 2

What Eve Alone Can Tell

God created the earth in a crescendo. Earth, plants, animals, man. Then the bible says that something is not good. Everything before was good.

Gen 2:18 "...It is not good that man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him."

Creation was not finished without Eve. Woman fills a place that nothing else can fill. What does that tell us about the nature of God?


Women are relational. God yearns for a relationship with us.

Isa 49:14 But Zion said, The LORD hath forsaken me, and my Lord hath forgotten me.
Isa 49:15 Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee.Jer 24:7 And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the LORD: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart.

Consider how fiercely devoted a mother is to her children. God loves us all the more. Women are tender, inviting, passionate, alluring. This is what God is speaking to His creation through women.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Summer Reading - Captivating - Chapter 1

The Heart of a Woman

This book begins with an adventure. The authors think that in a woman’s heart she would like to be “an irreplaceable role in a great adventure”. I wasn’t sure that I felt that way. Maybe I was "adventured out" before I got married and was ready to settle down. Or maybe since I have 5 children everyday seems like an adventure to me.

Then they listed some adventures – “horses or white water rafting, going to a foreign country, performing on stage, having children, starting a business, or diving ever more deeply into the heart of God” Okay, now I get it. Canoeing did not sound like an adventure to me. Diving ever more deeply into the heart of God – yes, that sounds exciting to me. Are you wanting adventure in your life?


“God created man in his own image…male and female he created them” (Gen 1:27)
Whatever it means to bear God’s image, you do it as a woman. Female. That’s how and where you bear his image. Your feminine heart has been created…as a reflection of God’s own heart.

That changes the way I feel about myself as a woman. I ask myself - Do I reflect God's heart? I want to. He made me to.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Graduates 2009

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end." Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, May 18, 2009

my piano.jpg

Music calms the soul and lifts the spirit...
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Summer Reading - Captivating - Introduction

This book Captivating reaches into the mystery of the feminine heart, the deep waters of a woman’s soul, and the treasure in the heart. These are the reasons that you are captivating. Each woman is individual and precious like a rare jewel. One thing that makes a woman so valuable is her uniqueness. So when you read this book it might hit you totally different than someone else and that’s okay. God is so incredible that way – He knows every detail of our heart, He loves us anyway, and He deals with us in a personal and loving manner.

Just look at the sunsets. The sky is different every morning and every evening everywhere in the world. And wherever you stand, it is beautiful and magnificent boasting His undeniable greatness and glory.

God also made woman a beauty in His creation. Not just in outward appearance but in the inward beauty of who you are.

This book will help you see yourself as God sees you. And realize that you are worth finding out the treasures of your heart and worth fixing the hurts.

…I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee. Jeremiah 31:3

The Lord is drawing you unto Himself. God wants to take your sorrows and give you the oil of gladness.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Summer Reading

This Summer we are reading the book Captivating: Unveiling the Mystery of a Women's Soul by John & Stasi Eldredge. Just the name alone encourages me. And I find that my sisters in Christ are captivating, when I take the time to get to know them.

So follow along if you dare, dive deep into the heart of woman - God's beautiful creation.

Have you already read this book? Let us know what you think!

Friday, April 17, 2009

Fear Not, little ones

God is a supernatural being. It takes a certain amount of faith to believe in His being, promises, and eternity. Even though we have eye witness accounts of the risen Jesus. We count our time by ”the year of our Lord” in B.C. which stands for “before Christ” and A.D. which means “after dissention” We have other writings besides the followers of Jesus who give testimony of the events in the Bible.

In America, we are so science oriented that we have trouble believing anything that has not been dissected, analyzed, scrutinized, and theorized. And yet, it takes faith to believe a theory.

While focused on the fact of what we can see, hear, touch, and analyze, the supernatural world rages on all around us. Ephesians 6:12 “we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.”

If the supernatural is not real, then we don’t need Jesus.
Why do we read our children stories about ghosts and monsters, and then tell them it is not real? We tell our children, “oh, those are just made up stories, you don’t need to be afraid.” The reason we need not be afraid is because Jesus has given “the keys to the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:19

Elisha’s servant was worried “And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they be with them….And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha.”

So fear not and have faith in God.
Nourish Your Child

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Busy Moms

Busy Moms

Are you homeschooling or a mom with small children at home? Do you need some time to get some things done? Let me share a few ideas that worked for me.
With a new baby, I had a nursing corner stocked with books to read and toys and activities ready for my toddler. This worked so well I made stations in other parts of the house too. I had an art station in the kitchen so the kids could stay busy while I cooked. And it was near the sink for easy clean-up of paint and other art supplies. I have had a science station with science books and activities ready. Things like big magnets, a gyroscope, and a prism were out and ready for easy access. You can switch around the content from time to time to keep it interesting.
Eclectic learning works amazingly well. At holidays and birthday’s I always try to buy learning toys. We have legos, fischertechnik, k’nex, blocks, gears, and lots of thinking games. The Rush Hour Traffic Jam Puzzle has been a big favorite lately. has eclectic learning toys for all ages. I found that my kids were ready to begin learning play very young. We started “me too” fun school at home at 2 and 3 years of age. As soon as I started making learning activities available my life was so much simpler because my kids were doing something constructive instead of getting into trouble. My daughter was so independent that she wanted to choose the activity. If it was my suggestion, then she didn’t want to do it. I could get her started on the activity of her choice and then she would stay busy for a long time. Then when she would move on to the next activity she was calmer because her mind was being engaged.
Getting your child started on something works well. You could use a timer. Set the timer for 15 minutes. Tell your child that this 15 minutes belongs to him or her. Then mom gets the next 45 minutes to work on her project. When the time is up then your child gets your one on one attention for another 15 minutes.
For online business stay at home moms you could set up a computer next to yours and have computer learning games ready right next to you.
Do you have friends with kids about the same age? You could take turns watching the kids, your house one day a week, and their house one day a week.
These are just a few suggestions. Do you have any ideas to share?

Nourish Your Children

Friday, March 27, 2009

Take a stand

Have you met the mother who is friendly, kind, and soft spoken, yet her child is wild, disrespectful, and out of control? This was such an obscurity to me. I wondered at this for time before I realized that these fit together. That mother is so kind and soft spoken that she doesn’t take a stand with her child. That strong-willed child is taking advantage of his/her mother’s good nature.
This was foreign to me since I, on the other hand, was a strong-willed child, who consequently gave birth to two strong willed children myself. (So, if any of my children seem wild, disrespectful, or out of control, it is not because I am too “good natured.” haha) I have my own issues. This is a most difficult part of parenting – your children are smaller versions (at least they start out smaller, my son is now 6'6") of you and your husband, and will respond in a manner because of how you treat them. Do you want the good news or the bad news first? The bad news is that we have to change ourselves if we want a different reaction. The good news is that we can change ourselves and get a different reaction.
You can change your situation. Your child is not hopeless. As I have endeavored to teach my children good character, the Lord has worked on refining my own character. This has helped my children twofold. First, my children are learning Christ-like character and mom is learning to be a better
person, mother, servant.
I pray “Lord reveal to me the areas where I need to grow. Lead me into truth and understanding.”

Nourish Your Child

Sunday, February 15, 2009

"....His banner over me is love." Song 2:4

This time of year thoughts of love are flying everywhere. Sadly, most people feel disappointed. And yet you have been loved with the greatest love of all. "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down His life for His friends."John 15:13 Years ago, I was so busy feeling sorry for myself that I forgot to think about how my kids were feeling about themselves. This week the question came "How do I help my kids when they are not feeling loved and accepted?" I think every person young and old will struggle with feelings of rejection until they accept the love of Jesus. "But God commanded His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Rom 5:8 We didn't do anything to deserve that love, it is a free gift. We can just accept it. It is hard for me to help my kids feel loved when I am not feeling loved or accepting Christ's love. Even though I love my children more than they can imagine. Only the love of Jesus will fill that empty space. The best thing I can do is point my kids to the cross. Of course, I need to have been there myself. Just as I am, sin and all, I come to the cross and lay all my problems at the feet of Jesus. And in His love and grace He gives me back " for ashes, the oil for joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness, that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He might be glorified." Isa 61:3 I want to instill on my own heart and the hearts of my kids God's extravagant, immeasurable, unending thoughts of love and joy over His children. We read verses about it, sing songs of joy, and spend time thinking on His thoughts.

Zep 3:17 "The LORD thy God in the midst of thee is mighty; He will save, He will rejoice over thee with joy; He will rest in His love, He will joy over thee with singing."

Nourish Your Child