Showing posts with label Quotes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Quotes. Show all posts

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 12


A Quote

"Isn't there something in living dangerously?"
-Aldous Huxley, Brave New World

A Book

I started reading Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe - I've never read it, and it's referenced so often in American Culture, I figured I should read it to know what everyone is talking about.  It's so much more interesting than I originally thought it would be, kind of like East Of Eden was!  Don't be afraid of those big books, folks.  In my experience thus far, even big books typically have to be somewhat interesting to get published.

A Bit Of Nature



I'm trying to figure out what this bush is...it looks like a chokecherry bush to me.  We used to pick chokecherries growing up and make syrup out of them - I hope that's what it is!  I'm breaking out my plant guides later to confirm.

A Recommendation

If you have never heard of the Serial app, you should definitely check it out!  It breaks up classic books into 15-minute serials that are delivered to you each morning.  I think it makes those doorstops feel more manageable.  It's how I'm reading Uncle Tom's Cabin.  And the books are all free!

A Moment Of Happiness

We were at the Christian bookstore yesterday, and Wyatt spotted some devotional books that he wanted.  After I looked through them to make sure they were good, I offered to buy one of them for him.  He insisted on paying me back when we got home, but I honestly wasn't going to remind him.

Later that night, after bedtime, I was sitting in my chair, and Wyatt snuck out of his room and handed me a bill and a handful of coins to pay for his devotional, and then he asked me what time I usually get up to read the Bible.

I wrote about this last week, but I was about his age when I paid for my own first devotional book and started reading it along with my Bible daily.  I don't know if he heard me telling that story or not, but either way, I love that it was so important to him to buy the book himself and get on track with reading his Bible daily.  I love seeing him take initiative in his own godly habits and spiritual growth.

He gave me his squinty-eyed grin when I told him he could come read with me in the mornings, and it just warmed my heart so much.  I'm so proud of my boy.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 11



Gracious, I've lost my blogging rhythm a bit.  When did I last write about something personal on here?  It's been a while, so I'm going to use The Wednesday Five format to get back into it this week.  You can read other Wednesday Five posts here, and feel free to join in if you want!

A Quote

"We're a violent people, Cal.  Does it seem strange to you that I include myself?  Maybe it's true that we are all descended from the restless, the nervous, the criminals, the arguers and brawlers, but also the brave and independent and generous.  If our ancestors had not been that, they would have stayed in their home plots in that other world, and starved over the squeezed-out soil...that's why I include myself.  We all have that heritage, no matter what land our father's left.  All colors and blends of Americans have somewhat the same tendencies.  It's a breed, selected out by accident.  And so we're over-brave and over-fearful - we're kind, and cruel as children.  We're over-friendly and at the same time frightened of strangers.  We boast and are impressed.  We're over-sentimental and realistic.  We are mundane and materialistic - and do you know what other nation acts for ideals?  We eat too much.  We have no taste, no sense of proportion.  We throw our energy about like waste.  In the old lands they say of us that we go from barbarism to decadence without an intervening culture.  Can it be that our critics have not the key or language of our culture?  ...That's what we are, Cal, all of us.  You are not very different."
-East Of Eden, pg 568 (emphasis mine)

For some reason this little monologue in East Of Eden stood out to me when I read it a couple months ago, and I've been mulling it over a bit.  I don't know if I think Steinbeck got Americans exactly right, but in some senses I think he captured some of the spirit of America here.

The part that stands out to me right this minute is where he asks whether critics of our country fail to understand Americans because they don't have the key and language of our culture, and I think he got that right.  Ultimately what has tied us all together as a country, as Americans, for the last 244 years is our ideals - our ideals of freedom, and our efforts to reach toward those ideals even when we may have failed to live up to them.  We are a people tied together by a love of freedom, and a tenacious will to struggle and fight to achieve it, and to defend it whenever it is threatened.  I hope we always keep that.

I saw a random social media comment from a person in a country which shall remain nameless, who criticized Americans for "always thinking someone wants to take your freedom away".  It irked me to no end, just because of the sheer ignorance.  That's an example right there of someone who doesn't understand what America really is, who maybe never will, because she doesn't have "the key or language of our culture".

Okay, sorry for the lengthy aside there - it just happened!  On to the next category...

A Book

I've been reading books on alot of political topics lately, but I don't really want to talk about those, so I'm going to mention that I started Maybe You Should Talk To Someone by Lori Gottlieb.  It's basically a memoir of a therapist who ends up needing therapy after a bad breakup.  I find the little tidbits about psychology interesting, and the author really knows how to tell an interesting story, so I kind of got sucked in.

A Bit Of Nature


This is from our trip to a little mountain stream a couple weeks ago - Clyde pointed out that the light playing on the water looked like a snakeskin - it kind of does, doesn't it?

A Recommendation

I recommend you get yourself over to Target, because they put out the school supplies in the dollar spot this week!  I got a bunch of good stuff that I might show over on Instagram.  I always look forward to raiding the dollar spot for homeschool stuff - all their little knick-knacks spark alot of homeschool ideas for me.

A Moment Of Happiness




Last week was our 12th wedding anniversary, and Derek and I were able to get away to a resort, thanks to my mom!  We had a nice time, and when we came back home the next day, Georgie ran up to me and said in her little baby voice "Mama, you're here!  I wuv you, Mama!  I wuv you so much!"

Oh my goodness, that girl.  I wuv her too.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 10


A Quote

"He had an idea that even when beaten he could steal a little victory by laughing at defeat." 
-John Steinbeck, East Of Eden

A Book

Sometimes I don't know what to put here - should I share the book I'm reading, or something else?  I'm still reading East Of Eden, and making good progress.  I'm strongly considering starting Brave New World by Aldous Huxley next.  Seems like it might be appropriate for these crazy political times, along with 1984 and Animal Farm.  In our state, a man was arrested after an officer stopped him for playing t-ball with his daughter in a completely empty park.  I kid you not.  What in the world.  Are we still in America?  Every day this is starting to feel more like the Twilight Zone.

A Bit Of Nature



I caught this tiny little bud sprouting on our bushes today!  I'd be 100% okay if Spring came early this year (though I'm still rooting for a lot of moisture in April and May to avoid fires).

A Recommendation

I found a new site with a lot of cute nature study printables, and I recommend you check it out to break up the monotony of school days when you're stuck at home.  I printed some up for my kids, and I'm planning on sending some of the cards to my nieces and nephews!  Also, if you missed it, these adorable Little House On The Prairie paper dolls. Get them while they're still free!

A Moment Of Happiness

The kids and I walked to the mailbox again today, or more accurately, I walked and they rode their various muscle-powered vehicles.  My "little middles" (Clyde and Clarice), pushed past me on their scooters, their little heads bouncing up and down with the effort, and Wyatt peddled past on his bike.  But I just chuckled to myself as Gwen flew past me with her hair shining in the sun, and her baby doll strapped to her back in her child-sized Ergo.  If you ask her, she'll still tell you she wants to be fill-in-the-blank "AND a mama", and I love it so much.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 9



I'm trying to bring back the Wednesday Five on the blog!  You can read other Wednesday Five posts here, and feel free to join in if you want.

A Quote

"The direction of a big act will warp history, but probably all acts do the same in their degree, down to a stone stepped over in the path, or a breath caught at the sight of a pretty girl, or a fingernail nicked in the garden soil." 
-John Steinbeck, East Of Eden

A Book

Ribsy by Beverly Cleary.  Tonight we all sat down together for dinner, which doesn't happen as often as I'd like, and Derek and I took turns reading it aloud to the kids.  It is nostalgic, written about a different era, and I love it so much during this crazy time.

A Bit Of Nature



A Recommendation

You have to check out this Youtube channel I just found - this little old lady has a channel called Great Depression Cooking, and she cooks a meal that her family ate during the Great Depression, and tells her memories from that time.  She's got to be at least pushing 90 then?  Man, I hope I'm like her when I'm 90. I thought it was particularly nice to stumble across her channel during uncertain economic times.  Hopefully we don't have a full-blown depression in our future, but her stories are interesting.

(Seconds of potato soup while I type this)

A Moment Of Happiness

When we were eating dinner tonight, the kids were all listening to the story so carefully while Derek was reading, and I was feeding Georgie a few spoonfuls of soup to help her not spill.  I put particular effort into a creamy potato soup for dinner tonight, and she really liked the potatoes. She takes a bite from the spoon, and then all of a sudden she looks at me and makes this wide-eyed, stretched-out silly face at me.  It was so cute and unexpected, I laughed.  Then I made the face back, and she laughed.  Then she said something cute and all my adorable little clan laughed.  

It's moments like that which remind me how even "hard" times have fun in them.  The world could fall apart, and I like to think we'd still find ways to make each other laugh. 

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 8





I'm trying to bring back the Wednesday Five on the blog!  You can read other Wednesday Five posts here, and feel free to join in if you want. You can borrow the format and slap any old day of the week on there.


A Quote


"Shake not the head, feet, or legs; roll not the eyes, lift not one eyebrow higher than the other, wry not the mouth; and bedew no man's face with your spittle, by approaching too near him when you speak."
-George Washington, from his rules for civility 

I thought you all would appreciate that part about not "bedewing" any man's face with your spittle in light of the events this week!


A Book

East Of Eden by John Steinbeck.  Our little local library, the one that is a ten minute walk from my house, was still open today.  I went in (careful not to touch anything), and rented this book.  I've never read anything by Steinbeck, have you?  Grapes Of Wrath I've heard of, but this one sounded interesting.



A Bit Of Nature


Isn't this fence in our neighborhood so neat?


A Recommendation

I recommend you keep an eye on your email this week, because a lot of companies are having online sales to combat the fact that people aren't out shopping in person.  I'll probably have alot of packages coming next week (so glad that postal service is still up and running)!  I ordered a swimsuit I've had my eye on for a while at 20% off, dresses for the girls at over 50% off, and some new essential oil blends from Plant Therapy at 30% off.  Good deals this week, and lots of homeschool websites are sending out freebies too - email/online is where it's at right now!


A Moment Of Happiness

Georgie was following me round the kitchen this morning, and I bent down with my lips pressed together to give her a kiss.  She threw her chubby little arms on either side of my head and pulled my face to hers, crossing her eyes as she aimed at kissing me on the lips.  I don't want to ever forget her concentration and precious little face.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 7


A Quote

"I make myself rich by making my wants few." - Henry David Thoreau

"He is richest who is content with the least." - Socrates

"Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have. For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” -Hebrews 13:5

I was thinking about the Thoreau quote, and then found the Socrates quote by accident, so you get two for one, plus a Bible verse.  I don't know why, but contentment was on my mind this morning, perhaps because it is Thanksgiving week.  I think contentment and thankfulness go hand in hand - it's hard to have one without the other.  The Bible exhorts us over and over to be content, and the secret for the believer to contentment is that we have everything we truly need in Christ.  When we focus our hearts on what He has done to save us, how can we not be thankful?  Just some things I was mulling over this morning.

A Book

It's hard to come up with a book recommendation this morning, because I'm still working through the same old ones.  I'm going to throw out Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens as a suggestion.  My goal is to finish it before the end of my social media break.  Dickens can be really dense reading, but also, no one can turn a sentence quite like him!  I read A Christmas Carol last December, and loved it so much that I've been wanting to tackle one of his other books ever since.  They are just so long though.  Have you read any Dickens?

A Bit Of Nature




You also get two pictures, one because it snowed and it's gorgeous, and another one because the sunrise this morning was so striking.  I feel blessed to live somewhere now where I can see the sunrise!

A Recommendation

Yesterday, I spent most of the day finishing my Christmas shopping online, and I got 80% of the kids' presents from Rainbow Resource.  It's actually a homeschooling curriculum website, but they recently sent us their toy catalog.  I had the kids circle all the things they liked in it, and I was so impressed with their choices!  The toys Rainbow Resource carries are geared more toward imaginative play and creativity, and they carry good quality items (I didn't find many...or maybe not any...cheap plastic items).  Anyway, you should check out their toy section on the website.  I got so many ideas for the kids it was hard to choose!

A Moment Of Happiness

Last night I asked Derek if he would string up some Christmas lights in our room.  He was tired after a long day of work, but he was sweet enough to do one more thing for me anyway.  I put out some Christmas pillows on our couch and bed, and after he was finished we enjoyed our festive room, sparkling lights, and eggnog while we laughed through an episode of The Middle.  Our nightly routine is pretty simple, and may not seem exciting.  But I think it's a special thing to cuddle next to my husband and laugh a little together before we go to sleep.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 6



A Quote

"The woods are so human that to know them one must live with them.  An occasional saunter through them, keeping to the well-trodden paths, will never admit us to their intimacy,  If we wish to be friends, we must seek them out and win them by frequent, reverent visits at all hours, by morning, by noon, and by night; and at all seasons, in spring, in summer, in autumn, in winter...They have their own effective way of keeping aliens at a distance and shutting their hearts to mere casual sightseers.  It is no use to seek the woods from any motive except sheer love of them; they will find us out at once and hide all their sweet, old-world secrets from us.  But if they know we come to them because we love them, they will be very kind to us and give us such treasures of beauty and delight as are not bought or sold in any marketplace."
- Lucy Maud Montgomery, The Blue Castle

A little anthropomorphizing of the woods for you this morning, ha!  I always like L. M Montgomery's fanciful descriptions in her books though, and this one was sweet and a little true, I thought.

A Book

So, I started reading Little Women, which I've never actually read.  You are all welcome to be shocked now.

A Bit Of Nature


If you wake up early enough, and keep an eye out, there is a five minute window when the light coming up over the mountains is just gorgeous.

A Recommendation

So, I thought I'd give you a couple recommendations that were given to me this week.  One is this pumpkin chili recipe.  I had friends over for a book chat this week, and the conversation turned to different chili recipes.  Pumpkin chili sounds interesting, so I think I'm going to have to try it one of these days!

The other recommendation was Wick Wish Candle Co - this company makes "literary and fandom" candles.  One of the girls brought over a couple of hers on our book chat night, so we could smell them, and they were so cool!  And weirdly they did smell like the books they were representing.  I want one now (maybe for Christmas).  The ones I smelled were "Jane Austen", "Anne Shirley", and "Little Women" and they were so good.

A Moment Of Happiness

This one is going to double as one more recommendation - if you have the room, you should consider a big dog.  Maybe a bloodhound mutt, like our Harvey.


(Harvey, crashing the pictures I was trying to take for the Stitchfix post that I keep forgetting to share!)

As I was doing my devotions this morning, our big 'ole dog came over to me and stuck his nose on top my lap, and while it can be a little annoying at times, I love how sweetly he gets his message across.  I scratched his ears and let him outside, and now he is back in, snoring behind me as I type this.  The sound makes me smile.

I love having a big dog, because whenever the kids are outside I know he is keeping an eye on them and will alert me if any strangers or questionable wildlife come too close.  And when Derek has to be gone for work trips, I honestly don't know what I'd do without Harvey - he sleeps at the foot of the stairs and makes me feel safe.  I'm really grateful for him.  He started out a little like the puppy in Marley And Me, but just like in that movie, he is a better and better dog with each year.

(If you want to join me for your own "Wednesday Five", feel free!)

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 4


A Quote

I sit beside the fire and think
Of people long ago,
And people who will see a world,
That I shall never know.
But all the while I sit and think
Of times there were before,
I listen for returning feet
And voices at the door.
-Poem from The Fellowship Of The Ring
Maybe you are tired of Lord Of The Rings quotes, but this is the end of a really lovely poem in the Fellowship.  Part 2, Chapter 3, a few pages into the chapter titled "The Ring Goes South".  If you have a copy handy, you should go read the whole poem.  I'm not very good at poetry, but I really liked this one.


A Book

I was working on a new post for Rooted last week, and I raided my shelves for some inspiration.  Loving My Actual Christmas by Alexandra Kuykendall was the first book I grabbed.  I'm thinking it might be time for a re-read.  I remember how calming this book was for me the first time I read it, leading up to the holiday season.  If I remember right, it has lots of practical tips, but also great encouragement for reflecting on why we celebrate in the first place.


A Bit Of Nature



A photo from the nature hike with my sister last week!  The cousins loved crashing through the woods together.


A Recommendation

While I don't actually think I would do well as a business person, I have a little bit of a fascination regarding how businesses start, grow, or fail, and how that's so often tied in with cultural elements and trends.  Maybe my interest stems from the fact that I like to shop?  Anyway, I came across this channel on Youtube, and his videos are so interesting to me.  I especially like the "Bigger Than You Know" series, and the "Rise And Fall" series.  If you are interested in how and why brands appear on and disappear from the shelves, you might like this channel too.


A Moment Of Happiness

When I took Clarice on a day out with me the other week, I let her pick out a toy.  She picked out this play-cleaning set, with a broom, dustpan, pretend spray bottles, rags, etc.  Ever since she got this set, whenever I start to clean up the house or sweep the floor, she runs to grab her cleaning "supplies" and helps me.  It's so cute to see my little four year old diligently "sweeping" the floor or "wiping" the table.

The other day I was baking, and she ran for her broom, and then all I saw were two blue eyes peering up over the other side of the counter, and a tiny hand with a mini broom carefully sweeping away that flour I had spilled.  I walked into the pantry during nap time, and noticed that she had hung her little broom and dustpan on the spare hook right next to my broom and dustpan.  It melted my heart and brought a grin to my face.  I love this age.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 3


A Quote
"'Faithless is he that says farewell when the road darkens,' said Gimli. 
'Maybe,' said Elrond, 'but let him not vow to walk in the dark, who has not seen the nightfall.'
'Yet sworn word may strengthen quaking heart,' said Gimli. 
'Or break it,' said Elrond."                                                                         
-Fellowship Of The Ring

You can probably guess which book I'm reading right now!  This exchange stood out to me this time, and I found it interesting.  I tend to side with Gimli, I think, but curious if you all have any thoughts.  I'm mulling it over.


A Book

Alot of the books from Anne Bogel's summer reading guide were duds for me this time around, but I am listening to one of them, Searching For Sylvia Lee by Jean Kwok, on audio now.  I'm halfway through and really enjoying it, especially in audio format!  This is a mystery/thriller book, and a good portion of the story involves Chinese immigrants in the Netherlands.  The way those two cultures come together here is really unexpected and interesting.  I'm not completely vouching for it yet since I haven't finished, but so far it's also been fairly clean.


A Bit Of Nature


Pretty fall view.  My little white church where I grew up is down in that valley.


An Recommendation

This recommendation is a little different - I'm going to recommend you check out the makeup section at TJ Maxx.  I have two lip glosses and a lipstick that I bought from there that are name brand (Anastasia Beverly Hills and Flesh), but they cost less than half the normal price.  Just thought of that because I particularly like the Flesh lipglosses, and I never would have bought them otherwise!  So if you have a TJ Maxx near you, check it out!

A Moment Of Happiness

The kids had been outside for a while, and I didn't hear much except for occasional squeals of delight.  I was getting a little suspicious, and I went over the window to see what was making them so happy, expecting to see some mischief.

What I saw was my four big children gathered around our red wagon, positioned at the top of the hill of our driveway.  Two of the kids started pulling the wagon down the hill while one sat inside, gripping the sides.  The looks of joy on their faces, and the sun backlighting their hair...it was one of those golden moments I don't ever want to forget.

The Wednesday Five | Vol. 2



A Quote

"Our hope in Christ for the future is the mainspring and the mainstay of our joy here.  It will animate our hearts to think often of heaven, for all that we can desire is promised there...Nevertheless, let it never be said of us that we are dreaming about the future and forgetting the present, let the future sanctify the present to it's highest uses...The man who has this hope in him goes about his work with vigor, for the joy of the Lord is his strength...He can labour without present reward, for he looks for a reward in the world to come." -Charles Spurgeon


This is from Morning And Evening by Charles Spurgeon, which I've been loving as an addition to my Bible reading lately.  A little bonus book pick for you!


A Book

Dracula by Bram Stoker.  This book is really not my style at all, but so far I'm kind of enjoying it?  I never read horror, but I am in a classics book club with some friends from my college days, and Dracula is what we picked for this season.  It is a classic, so I figure it's worthwhile to read just for the cultural references, but I'm halfway through and now I'm rather curious to see how it's going to turn out!  The ending in the book is supposed to be good...




Sidenote:  I am reading my leather-bound copy from Barnes And Noble, because it's the prettiest and least creepy cover I could find...also, I know I'm pale.  I promise I'm not a vampire.

A Bit Of Nature


The aspen trees peaked this last week!  But there are still a few areas where they have yet to change color.  I should really record peak week each year so I can plan our fall hikes to coincide.

A Recommendation

I have attended a few of these homeschool summits in the past - this is basically a free online conference with encouragement for Christian homeschool parents!  This year there will be sessions with Ken Ham and Voddie Baucham, so you should obviously sign up just for that.  But there also other speakers I have appreciated in the past, like Hal and Melanie Young, and Todd Wilson.  I expect good things!  It's happening next week, if you are interested.

A Moment Of Happiness

I took Clarice on a "mom day" last weekend.  We went grocery shopping, and I loved the feel of her dainty little hand in mine.  She insisted on riding in the cart until she was practically covered in groceries, and I remember doing the same when I was a kid.  I bought her a toy, a set of cleaning supplies.  "Mama, I can help you clean the house!" she declared excitedly.

We finished at the store, and I got her a happy meal as a special treat for dinner, since we never get happy meals when I have all the kids together.  She sat across the table, deconstructing her hamburger before she ate it, and every now and then she looked at me and gave me one of her dazzling grins.  Then she'd make a face at me to make me laugh.

She bounced along beside me as we left, like a little Tigger.  ON the way home she spotted the moon out the window.  "Mama, the moon is following us home!  He must be hungry!"  Then she laughed at her own joke, and I laughed too.

And I just kind of wish she could stay four years old forever.

A Gracefully Aging November



Every year during the month of November I think to myself that I want to share this quote.  And every year I forget until well into December.  I almost didn't share it this year, because for the most part this November has been of the fretting variety, not the growing old gracefully variety.  But I thought I'd share it anyway, rather than waiting another year.  November never feels like it's fretting to me, it always feels like the year is growing old gracefully, so I think this quote is perfect.  If you have never read the Anne Of Green Gables series, you are missing out.

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Just Some Stuff

 

Just a few things this Friday . . .

{One}

For all of you who are looking for the next installment of my homeschooling story, I decided not to post it today.  I know I’ve been doing some pretty involved posts this week, so I figured we all needed a bit of a break going into the weekend.  If you haven’t checked out the Urechek’s missionary story, please go check that out!  The next homeschooling post will be up next week.

{Two}

Okay, I take that back – one more serious thing.  Were you all aware that 40 Days For Life is going on right now?  It’s a peaceful vigil going on in front of abortion clinics across the country, where pro-life people are gathering to pray for an end to abortion.  I would love to participate in this someday, but since I can’t this year (it would just be too hard with a one year old), I’ve been keeping up with the 40 Days For Life blog

If you are pro-life, you must check this blog out!  They post encouraging thoughts and stories for each day of the vigil, and it’s amazing how many babies have already been saved through this event.  The posts are hopeful, which is something I crave when it comes to this topic – abortion is such a tragedy, and  to hear of lives that are spared from that is so encouraging.

{Three} 

I feel so productive this week. 

This week . . .

-I started and finished a book within a couple days.  I can’t even tell you how long it’s been since I’ve done that. . .

-I made lemon truffles that I found on Pinterest (they did not turn out, and I’m not sure what went wrong) . . .

-I painted our upstairs spare bedroom, cleaned it out, re-organized and decorated it . . .

-I cleaned out the downstairs closet so that we can now move Harvey’s kennel down there (instead of leaving it in my newly fabulous spare room) . . .

-I finally caught up on laundry, ironed a few of Derek’s work shirts . . .

-  And I took my sister out to get her nails done before the wedding this Saturday. 

All of this in between taking care of my boy and hanging out with my hubby in the evenings!  I kind of feel like Superwoman this week.

{Four} 

That is, I felt like Superwoman until I got home from our girl’s day yesterday and crashed on the couch.  Then I made fudge, watched and couple episodes of Full House, and just played with Wyatt a bit.  Oh, and I wrote this post.  I felt like I needed to go to bed, and it was only 5:00 PM.

{Five}

Wyatt is pulling himself up on everything, and he started walking along furniture!  In the last couple weeks he has also finally decided that baths aren’t so bad.  I think it’s because we switched him to the big tub.  He still fusses a bit when we first put him in, but then he starts splashing and laughing . . . it’s so cute!

  DSC_0197blog

As you can tell in the picture, he’s also been doing this funny tongue-roll thing.

Have I mentioned that I have the cutest little guy in the world? 

I found this quote a while back:

babyquote

So true.  I’m pretty sure mine really is the cutest though. 

But you all are allowed to think yours are the cutest too . . . as it should be!

{Six}

That’s pretty much it.  I have some other things going on that are stressing me out a little, and that I’d rather not go into on this blog.  Just say a little prayer for me if you think of it? 

{Seven}

(I just can’t end on six . . .)

I only mention number six because I know you all will say a prayer for me – my blog readers are all so supportive!  I always hear about these nasty comments that other people get on their blogs, but I’ve honestly never got a nasty comment on here – and that’s because all of you are so great!  Glad to be navigating this crazy blog world with all of you on board!

Okay, that’s really it now.



Thoughts On The Future

Lately I've been thinking alot about the Future. But not in the way you might think.

At first I was thinking about the Future in regards to everything it may or may not hold. What will happen with our jobs in the Future? Will we live in this house forever? So much has changed in this past year - what will life look like at this time next year? Will I have as much trouble getting pregnant with our next baby as I did getting pregnant with our first? How many kids will we have? Mostly just questions of the unknown.

But lately, my thoughts about the Future have been more focused on my actual thinking about the Future. Sure, it can be fun thinking about what might be, but is it really healthy? I've been convicted recently that it's not, not in the way that I have been thinking about it.


Two Exceptions


I don't think there is much good to be done in thinking about the Future, except as it may affect our present actions.

If I'm thinking about the Future only so I can plan appropriately for what I need to do today, there really isn't too much of a problem (got that tidbit from "The Screwtape Letters" by C.S. Lewis, and I agree).

If I'm thinking about and focusing on Eternity that is a very good thing, because it has immediate repercussions in the Present - I'm going to live in a more godly manner today if I'm living with Eternity in mind. (see Chapter 15 in "The Screwtape Letters" for a good discussion about this whole subject).

But in this post I'm talking about thinking on my physical Future here on earth.
If I'm thinking about the unknowns of the Future, it only brings about two reactions: worry about the Future or discontent with the Present.


Worrying About The Future


When I start thinking too much about what might happen in the Future, it's almost impossible not to worry. I get to thinking about all the "what-if's", wondering what will happen, and then wondering what I should do if it does happen.

It's so easy to forget that worry is a sin. And I mostly worry about things in the Future - I don't worry so much about what is happening right now. Worrying about Future events that may or may not happen is a huge joy-stealer in my life - how am I supposed to be joyful when so many cares and worries are loading me down?

If not thinking about the Future helps me to worry less, not only am I sinning less by not worrying so much, but it's so much better for my mental and physical health as well

(Kara wrote a good post on worry, and that's where I found the above quote.)


Dreaming About The Future


But not all thoughts of the Future are filled with doom and gloom - sometimes I like to dream about the Future. And really what is wrong with that?

I think sometimes it's okay to just dream a little, but if my mind is often consumed with daydreams about things that may or may not happen, I don't think that is healthy. It's not at all helpful for appreciating the moment - in fact, focusing on what might be in the Future takes my attention away from being thankful for all those everyday gifts that I have right now (this also ties in with the book "One Thousand Gifts" by Ann Voscamp, which for me has become partially about living fully in the Present, not with the Future constantly in mind).

And then on top of that, there is bound to be some disappointment if my actual Future doesn't live up to my expectations, or I may find myself discontented with the moment and wishing it away for the sake of things in the Future. How ungrateful that is! The Lord showers blessings on us every day, and I'll miss most of them if I'm always looking for the next thing.


Minding The Present


Right now, today, is all I have. I have no gaurantee about anything in the Future - why do I spend so much time thinking about my Future here on earth when what I do with each Present moment is what will really count for Eternity? What eternal value is there in focusing so much on the earthly Future? There isn't much.

Can focusing much of my thoughts on the Future help me live better today? Not really, unless I am only thinking about the Future so I can plan present tasks. But then I still have to be careful not to let worry sneak in, and that is so easy to do.

Can thinking about the unknowns of the Future help me serve the Lord better? No. It takes my attention away from the Lord and focuses it on temporal dreams or fears.

(Katie wrote a great post recently, "On Tomorrow", that also touched on this subject - I borrowed the quote from her.)

I don't want to focus so much on the "what if's" or "maybe someday's" of the Future. I don't want to waste the Present - this moment is all I have any control over, because once it has passed me by it becomes the Past, and I can't have it back.

I want to appreciate every gift and make the most of every moment that is given to me right now, because what I do right now is what will matter for Eternity. I think I could honor the Lord much better if I think less about the Future (or even the Past, but that is a different subject), and just practice minding the Present.

Obviously I'm still working on it, and this is a struggle I'll probably have until my Future no longer includes this physical world, but only Eternity - but then it won't be the "Future" anymore, it will just be a never-ending Present with my Savior.

And that is the most beautiful thing to look forward to.



God Bless America!


Thank you Lord, for allowing us to live in a country that is free! Please bring our country back to Yourself, and I pray for Your continued blessing on our country. Help us to remember the Christian principles that the United States of America was founded on, and to never take the liberty You have entrusted to us, or the blood that has been spilled to defend it, for granted. Help us to value that freedom, and give us the grace to always defend it and preserve it! In Jesus's name, Amen.

"The truth is, all might be free if they valued freedom and defended it as they ought."
-Samuel Adams
Article in the Boston Gazette
October 14, 1771

"The liberties of our country, the freedom of our civil constitution, are worth defending at all hazards; and it is our duty to defend them against all attacks. We have received them as a fair inheritance from our worthy ancestors: they purchased them for us with toil and anger and expense of treasure and blood, and transmitted them to us with care and diligence. It will bring an everlasting mark of infamy on the present generation, enlightened as it is, if we should suffer them to be wrested from us by violence without a struggle, or be cheated out of them by the artifices of false and designing men."
-Samuel Adams
Article in the Boston Gazette
October 14, 1771

"Is life so dear, or so peaceful so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take, but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!"
-Patrick Henry
Speech at Virginia Convention
March 23, 1775

"If the true spark of religious and civil liberty be kindled, it will burn. Human agency cannot extinguish it. Like the earth's central fire, it may be smothered for a time; the ocean may overwhelm it; mountains may press it down; but its inherent and unconquerable force will heave both the ocean and the land, and at some point or other, in some place or other, the volcano will break out and flame up to heaven."
Daniel Webster
Address at bunker Hill Monument Cornerstone
June 17, 1825

"God grants liberty only to those who love it, and are always ready to guard and defend it."
-Daniel Webster


I hope you all have a wonderful celebration of the founding of this great country!

Quotable Quotes of the Week

My goodness, Theodore Roosevelt said so many true things! But I had to pick, so here are a few quotes from that great president.

"Never throughout history has a man who lived a life of ease left a name worth remembering."
-Theodore Roosevelt


"The unforgivable crime is soft hitting. Do not hit at all if it can be avoided; but never hit softly."
-Theodore Roosevelt


"Old age is like everything else. To make a success of it, you've got to start young."

-Theodore Roosevelt

By The Things That Are Made


I recently read the book “Case For A Creator” by Lee Strobel. I tend to be a science geek anyway, so this book was very interesting to me. Our God's imagination and power just amaze me, and studying science has always reminded me of that. This book allowed me to read about many more ways that our God has shown just how amazing He is through His creation. It consisted mostly of interviews with various scientists who are experts in their given fields and who are inclined to lean toward intelligent design as a viable theory of how the world originated.
Reading this book put me in my “science geek” mode, and inspired this post. These are some interesting quotes that I found not only in the book but through my own searches as well, and I’ve compiled them according to basic topic for you here. Please take time to read through them – these kinds of quotes are always encouraging and inspiring to me, and I hope they are to you as well.


“Exquisite Order”

“It is hard to resist the impression that the present structure of the universe, apparently so sensitive to minor alterations in numbers, has been rather carefully thought out . . . The seemingly miraculous concurrence of these numerical values must remain the most compelling evidence for cosmic design.”
- Paul Davies, Physicist

“The exquisite order displayed by our scientific understanding of the physical world calls for the divine.”
- Vera Kistiakowski, Physicist

“Through my scientific work I have come to believe more and more strongly that the physical universe is put together with an ingenuity so astonishing that I cannot accept it merely as brute fact . . . I cannot believe that our existence in this universe is a mere quirk of fate, an accident of history, an incidental blip in the great cosmic drama.”
- Paul Davies, Physicist

“A commonsense interpretation of the facts suggests that a superintellect has monkeyed with physics, as well as chemistry and biology, and that there are no blind forces worth speaking about in nature.”
-Sir Fred Hoyle



“Created For Man to Live In”

“Would it not be strange it a universe without purpose accidentally created humans who are so obsessed with purpose?”
-Sir John Templeton


“All the seemingly arbitrary and unrelated constants in physics have one strange thing in common – these are precisely the values you need if you want to have a universe capable of producing life.”
-Patrick Glynn

“If the universe had not been made with the most exacting precision we could never have come into existence. It is my view that these circumstances indicate that universe was created for man to live in.”
-John A. O’Keefe, Astrophysicist, NASA



Designed To Do Science

“What intrigued me was that the very time and place where perfect solar eclipses appear in our universe also corresponds to the one time and place where that are observers to see them . . .What’s more, perfect solar eclipses have resulted in important scientific discoveries that would have been difficult if not impossible elsewhere, where eclipses don’t happen.”
-Guillermo Gonzales, PHD

“Our main point is that there’s no obvious reason to assume that the very same rare properties that allow for our existence would also provide the best overall setting to make discoveries about the world around us. In fact, we believe that the conditions for making scientific discoveries on earth are so fine-tuned that you would need a great amount of faith to attribute them to mere chance.”
-Jay Wesley Richards, PHD

“One purpose for which we were designed is to do science itself.”
-Lee Strobel in Case For A Creator



Fanaticism of Evolutionists

“It has been my experience . . . that the ones who oppose the theory of design most vociferously do so for religious reasons.”
-Michael Behe, Biochemist

“Scientists propose hypotheses all the time. No big deal. But if I say ‘I don’t think natural selection is the driving force for the development of life; I think it was intelligent design,’ people don’t just disagree; many of them jump up and down and get red in the face. When you talk to them about it, invariably they’re not excited because they disagree with the science; it’s because they see the extra-scientific implications of intelligent design and they don’t like where it’s leading.”
-Michael Behe, Biochemist

"I wish I were younger. What inclines me now to think you may be right in regarding [evolution] as the central and radical lie in the whole web of falsehood that now governs our lives is not so much your arguments against it as the fanatical and twisted attitudes of its defenders."
-C.S. Lewis



A Sure Path to God

“It may seem bizarre, but in my opinion science offers a surer path to God than religion.”
-Paul Davies, Physicist

“Only a rookie who knows nothing about science would say science takes away from faith. If you really study science, it will bring you closer to God.”
-James Tour, Nanoscientist

“Nothing we learn about the universe threatens our faith. It only enriches it.”
-George Coyne, Astrophysicist

"...as I became exposed to the law and order of the universe, I was literally humbled by its unerring perfection. I became convinced that there must be a divine intent behind it all... My experiences with science led me to God. They challenge science to prove the existence of God. But must we really light a candle to see the sun?"
-Wernher von Braun.

"Nature is too thin a screen; the glory of the omnipresent God bursts through everywhere." -Ralph Waldo Emerson.


“Beyond Those Stars”

“Many have found that the awesome sight of the star-studded heavens evoke a sense of wonder, and awareness of transcendence, that is charged with spiritual significance. Yet the distant shimmering of stars does not itself create this sense of longing; it merely exposes what’s already there. They are catalysts for our spiritual insights, revealing our emptiness and compelling us to ask whether and how this void can be filled.
Might our true origins and destiny somehow lie beyond those stars? Might there not be a homeland, from which we are presently exiled and to which we secretly long to return? Might not our accumulation of discontentment and disillusionment with our present existence be a pointer to another land where our true destiny lies and which is able to make its presence felt now in this haunting way?
Suppose that this is not where we are meant to be but that a better land is at hand? We don’t belong here. We have somehow lost our way. Would not this make our present existence both strange and splendid? Strange, because it is not where our true destiny lies; splendid, because it points ahead to where that real hope might be found. The beauty of the night skies or a glorious sunset are important pointers to the origins and ultimate fulfillment of our heart’s deepest desires. But if we mistake the signpost for what is signposted, we will attach all our hopes and longing to lesser goals, which cannot finally quench our thirst for meaning.”
-Allister McGrath







"For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse . . ."
-Romans 1:20

Quotable Quotes Of The Week

I decided to start posting some quotes each week that mean something to me. Here is the first installment.


My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!
~Thomas Jefferson


Where liberty dwells, there is my country.
~Benjamin Franklin
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