Wednesday, August 31, 2011

up again

I'm up again, but I am pretty sure caffeine is the culprit! I guess I just can't have coffee after lunch. I can't say that I am upset though; this is rather nice. If I can't spend an ample amount of time in the morning by myself, then night time will have to do for now. This morning I didn't get to do my devotions because we were getting ready to leave for our girls shopping day (plus jack, my nephew). It was really fun, and I think the kids did so well. I am so proud of them. I got some good deals, too. We went to 3 gently used clothing stores (my kind of shopping!) and got to splurge on a coffee. It was so worth the late night, though. Next time, though, I will remember to get decaf.

Tonight as I finished reading through Luke, something non-instructive stood out to me. Usually when I read, God instructs and convicts me through His word. This time, it was really just a "oh yeah" kind of moment. Something that is so simple, yet I'm still so much in awe over it:

Then one of the criminals who were hanged blasphemed Him, saying, "If You are the Christ, save Yourself and us." But the other, answering, rebuked him, saying, "Do you not even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation? And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds; but this Man has done nothing wrong." Then he said to Jesus, "Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom." And Jesus said to him, "Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise."
                                                                             Luke 23 (39-43)
I guess I am just in awe over God's grace and mercy for us, and his ability to forgive so quickly if we just truly in our hearts believe.

  • He respected God (Do you not even fear God).
  • He knew his own sin (under the same condemnation . . . we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward of our deeds).

  • He knew Jesus (this Man has done nothing wrong).

  • He called out to Jesus (he said to Jesus).

  • He called out to Jesus as Lord (he said to Jesus, "Lord . . .").

  • He believed Jesus was who Jesus said He was (remember me when You come into Your kingdom).

  • He believed the promise of everlasting life from Jesus

  • And that's it. That's the start of a great relationship with Christ. Tonight as I study God's word I am feeling so blessed and refreshed. I really felt like I was supposed to share all of this--a few days ago I was reading Luke 21... and it made me feel like His coming is going to be soon. This is very real, and I want to be ready!

    Song I'm meditating on this week:  God of This City 

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

once again--an answer

It was just yesterday I asked the question about serving. Not one time did I ever think it was wrong to serve my family before someone else, but at the same time I wondered about the amount of time I was spending cooking and baking or doing other things that didn't really need to be done. I remember in bible study saying, "I have all these promptings that involve baking or cooking for others, yet I feel 'how could I keep serving in that way, I am struggling to actually find time to be with my kids unless I have really really planned out meals."

Meals. take. so. long.

And now with Peter being gluten-free it takes even longer to make everything from scratch, unless you want to spend 3x as much money, which I am not willing to do. Tonight before bed (because I can't sleep now) I was reading this really cool book "Loving The Little Years". I think it would be best if i just typed word for word what she said to say about 'bearing fruit'.

Psalm 128: Your wife will be like a fruitful vine within your house; your children will be like olve shoots around your table.
 In reference to bearing fruit, she talked about an apple tree and how it bears fruit many times during the season. It is constantly dropping fruit; some get used, and some, well, rot. She asks:

But what does this apply to in real life? Well, think about yourself and about the things you do. Look at it like fruit. Are you holding yourself back on things, afraid that the end result will not be worthy of your labor? Are you afraid to fail? Is there some domestic activity that you would love to know how to do, but don't want to try in case it doesn't turn out? Are you afraid to try new recipes? Are you afraid to put energy or money into something that might turn into nothing? Do you evaluate the necessity of everything, passing it by if it doesn't add up to be practical? Are you limiting the branches upon which you are willing to bear fruit?  Speaking for myself, I have sometimes let cultural admiration for efficiency get into places that it doesn't belong. For ex. I am working away on something and just cannot shake the question "Why am I doing this? Is this a ridiculous use of my time? Should I be doing something that matters, rather than (say) knitting a costumed mouse?" But it is very freeing to laugh at yourself--laugh when you know that apple you were just working on may very well fall to the ground, and who cares? But the chances are good that the more fruit you make, the more fruit gets used. The more you throw yourself into heavy branches, the more inviting the fruit, the more people it is likely to feed. Some of those apples are likely to fall to the ground and rot. But God uses rotten apples--to fertilize the ground, to start more apple trees after animals plant them. You cannot know the dept of His plan for your fruit. So what if you don't have a plan for it in the future? Waste it. Waste homemade pasta on your family. Don't save cloth napkins JUST for company. Sew a dress your daughter doesn't really need. Be bountiful with your fruit and free with it. The only thing you can know for sure is that God will use it.

Refreshed.... always amazed at God's perfect timing. 

Monday, August 29, 2011


I feel like all I ever do is complain on here. Yet the very same word complaint is what makes me most dissapointed. It is hard to do your best and still hear complaints about food or giving your child the wrong spoon or a hundred other different things. This morning I worked really hard on some gluten free buns for peter so that he could have barbeques. They really didn't turn out how i hoped... and they tasted a bit more sweeter than an actual bun would taste. So of course in my mind all I filtered in were the complaints. I just wish that I could understand what it would be like to feel 'left out' in that way. I think I am doing a good job in trying to accommodate my husband but I really feel like he's having a really hard time with it. And I feel awful. That is mostly why I try to go out of my way to bake for him so that he doesn't feel that way.

Tonight in our bible study we were talking about the gifts that God has given us and how we need to use them to glorify Him. I feel like sometimes I am just too wrapped up in my little world, making food and trying to please my kids and husband that I could possibly be missing opportunities to be serving others. Or, do you think this is what God wants me to do right now, too? Am I honoring Him with my time by trying to help my husband through this difficult time? I'd love to hear anyone's take on this. I guess I am just confused. I have had so many promptings to bring food out or meals to people who are sick and can't, or lost a wife and probably doesn't cook, or just had a baby.... yet its hard for me to find time to do all of those things because I am trying to serve my family.  Don't get me wrong, I have definitely done some serving to people, just not 100% what I feel like God has nudged me to do. Peter is really not feeling good about this right now... he could use your prayers. I feel like I have failed as a wife tonight because I was hurt that he didn't like anything that I made, which is also hard. Pray for me that I can put a smile on my face and just keep trying.

The Servant of the Lord
 Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight. I will put my Spirit on him and he will bring justice to the nations. He will not shout or cry out, or raise his voice in the streets. A bruised reed, he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not snuff out. In faithfulness he will bring forth justice; he will not falter or be discouraged till he establishes justice on earth.
Isaiah 42:1-4

Saturday, August 27, 2011


I hate that summer is practically over and it went so quickly because it was filled with events every week/every day. I think I'm ready for the fall, it's just that it usually means BEETS are looming closer and colder weather prevents us from being comfortable outside. I wonder what it would be like if we had 20 degree weather the whole winter? I would love to try it some time. Yesterday I cooked for the men and tried to space it out so that I wasn't doing everything all at once. Today we're making stuff again (pizzas this time) so that should hopefully be a little easier. I have a dessert crust in the oven right now for my friend's baby shower on Sunday, and last night after the kids went to bed I spent time making lists of things I need to do/bring. I have two games and a devotional I worked on. I still have to finish the banner I planned to bring and the runners, copy off all the games, and load everything in the car because after I bring out food, we are going straight there to decorate. I wish that I could spend time with Peter on Sunday afternoon, or even just take a much needed nap, but it will be fun to do the shower, too. I am really hoping that rain stays away so that we can finish early next week and maybe get to do something fun during the weekend. That would be a first, in a long time!

Monday is Emily's last true day with us, and I am thankful because I am scheduled to bring food out again on Monday and I have bible study right after, which is always a busy day. It will be helpful after this busy weekend I had. I have also been having a good few days with the girls. I have changed my attitude, asking God to make me more loving and so far he is answering my prayers. Yesterday I just felt like a new person because I thought before I spoke or did anything with the girls and it was wonderful. When I became angry, I Just breathed really deep for a while and asked God to help me focus on other things.  For whatever reason I felt God underlining Luke 18:14:  "For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted".  I think maybe I haven't been seeking God because I've been mad at how Maddy has ruined my devotion/alone time in the morning. My attitude was like : "ok, well if you're not letting her sleep in then obviously I can't read, so that is your fault!"  which is not appropriate! I feel like he is trying to tell me he knows what's best for me and I can't think that "I" know what's best. I have to humble myself and and let go of my pride and just trust God.  So anyway, that is what He is teaching me this week.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

I'm just not.

Just to keep things up-to-date, things are well here. I am not getting much editing done with the engagement photos (though I really have already done 80% of them).. I have been battling Satan for a good week and finally within the last couple of days I have found relief through answered prayers and encouragement through Gods' help and word. I just kept saying " My flesh and my heart may fail , but God is my strength and my portion forever". It made me think about how grouchy I was to my kids and if my actions were pleasing to God. I know I will not be able to please my kids in every situation... but I need to be pleasing God always. So, Maddy's waking up early and I can't do my devotions. Big deal. Maybe God wants me to rest and do them some other time in the day. Or maybe he wants me to fight through it and do them anyway? He knows what's right and I need to be trusting. So, here's to a better weekend. I'm just not giving Satan a foothold.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

get done soon!

It's Monday today. Again, the weekend went really fast but it was really fun too. This weekend I took some engagement photos for my sister-in-law Chelsie, and I am pleased with how they turned out. They aren't super original but we did the best we could with the bright sun. I was also able to visit with my sister on Saturday (she recently moved to Bismark) - that was such a treat. Even though it had only been 2 weeks, I know the next time I see her will be a little while unless we are able to visit her before Chelsie's wedding. She confirmed that she is able to help us for the wedding! So, pressure is off that the girls will be running around wild while we are trying to take photos and during the wedding. Plus, then we'll get to spend the weekend with her! (And she won't have to drive quite as far) Anyway, Sunday was hard for me because she normally comes over that day and I really missed her.

Yesterday truly was a humongously busy day- I went to GF most of the day to get things for the baby shower I'm helping with this weekend, and then I came home to finish making supper to bring out to the guys, after that I packed up to go to my bible study. I literally ran into the house, tried as quickly as I could to get everything cold into the fridge, and my ride was here. When I got home, I put the girls to bed and sat down. The kitchen really isn't too messy but it needs work. It was nice to go myself- I used to go all the time with the girls, and now I just don't know how I will get used to bringing the girls once Emily leaves and school starts again. When I'd bring them I'd only have 2-3 stops; lately I've been stopping at 4-5 places and that gets to be too long for them and not enough time to get back before naps.  So hopefully in the future it will go okay. As much as I'd like to stay home, I think today we're doing a play date so the girls can have fun. It looks like we won't get to see peter all day today.... sad.. hopefully they get done soon!

Friday, August 19, 2011

I'll covet your prayers

I wish I could get out of this complaining mode.  I have Kate's song from Bible School "I'm gonna adjust my attitude, with gratitude". Wish I could do that.  I let yesterday's bad mood affect me all day. I washed my phone. with the sheets!!! I never would have thought I'd wash my phone... it's never in any pocket. It's so disappointing.  I am mostly feeling lost because I fear I'll get into an accident some time and not have my phone. So, I'm wondering what I need to do... I'm going to call Verizon today and might need to make a quick trip to GF. That would be okay... something to do I suppose. There's a girl that has offered me her phone to use until I figure out what i'll do. I have been looking on Ebay but not finding a whole lot. I am hoping that by writing this it will help me release my dissapointing thoughts and that prayers would be offered for me! Silly, I know... but I think Satan is really trying to get me down. He is using this to make me feel bad among other things.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

winding down

 It has been a confusing week! Monday was a really busy day since it was my turn to cook. Tuesday I had my bible study over and fed them lunch, then went to Grand Forks with very crabby kids. Wednesday Emily came over to watch the girls and I cleaned my whole room! Then in the afternoon I prepared for part of the meal again. I made peach  jam, honey flaxseed bread (yum!) and some GF brownies. I was so worn out that I honestly can say ( I've never done it in my entire life) I fell asleep during peter's short prayer.

I don't have much that I need to get done today.. I just plan to take it easy and just spend time with the girls. It is nice to not have the pressure to workout -- I just really want to still watch what I eat and do it a few times a week, rather every day. It get's to be a controlling thing where I am not satisfied unless I've worked out.. and I certainly don't want it to rule my life.  I think that is it... the girls appear to be up.  later!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

a little delay

Each day I set my alarm a little before 6:30. This allows me to fully wake up, eat breakfast, do my devotions, and maybe unload the dishwasher or start it for the day. This morning I had changed my alarm to just a little before 7 a.m., and it went off at 6:30! So, I got up. In no way am I mad, but I thought that was a little odd. I am actually grateful that I got up so quickly because I seem to have a lot to do. This morning I am hosting our small group bible study at the house because we were not able to meet at night. I am so thankful we keep pushing through the weeks-- sometimes we can't meet, but I feel like everyone is sacrificing some so that we can.  I still have to do my devotions this morning and then I'd like to clean up around the house and put some type of quick-bread in. I bought a boxed mix for such occasions!

Yesterday I made a different kind of focaccia bread... it was like a deep dish pizza. so good! Here it is before I put it into the oven.

 And here it is after. It had tons of good flavor.

I am a little dissapointed that it rained. It would have been really nice to keep going with harvest but hopefully after this rain we can get going again. The above pictures are from yesterday.. to show you a little about what happens when we bring out meals. Usually the loading center is in the back of our yukon. It really is fun unless it's super hot and the bugs are biting!

Saturday, August 13, 2011


It's 8:00 a.m. and I have a turkey that's been in the oven for an hour already, breakfast and devotions done, kids still asleep, and I get to blog! This morning, with the help of a friend, I will be frosting approximately 120 cupcakes.  Our pastor is celebrating 5 years at our church (though we've only attended 1, and I was asked to make the cupcakes) . I thought it would be a fun way to serve and help. I hope it goes well!

The last few days have been good and fun. They ended up not combining Thursday, but they did on Friday and I believe they will today because we were spared from rain! We are very thankful, even though selfishly it would have been so fun to have Peter home. However, the flu is going around and Emily now has it.  Doesn't this usually happen on the weekends?!  Bummer. I hope (and praying) we don't get it.  I have been doing lots of cooking and baking lately, including the cupcakes.. and it has been fun. I've even caught up on dishes AND clothes! AND, I dusted our room yesterday! I have been trying not to be so lazy and get certain things done that really need to get done, like putting away clothes, the dusting, and trying to do more 'extra' things other than daily things. I need to clean out closets and do things like that, soon.  Tuesday night my sister took the girls out to eat and to the park, so peter and I enjoyed a steak supper at home, a bike ride, then I went on the elliptical for 10 minutes and got bored, so I cleaned all the toys upstairs and put them in bins. It felt soo good! It is nice to feel accomplishment once in a while.

Here's the link to the zucchini/carrot cake I made yesterday.  I used, though, 1 cup garbanzo flour, 1/4 cup of ground flax, 3/4 cup white sweet rice flour, 1/4 potato starch. I also added about half-1 cup extra of coconut milk. Since I froze my zucchini, I made sure to pad it down and make sure it wasn't water-packed (too much) because I've had trouble with the flour amounts vs. liquids lately. I baked it in a long bread pan for about 35-40 minutes.  It was fabulous.

Here's the recipe for the GF coconut shrimp  and the green bean  recipe.  Well, I best get started -- later!

Thursday, August 11, 2011


{R}ight now I am humming in my head the melody to "soon and very soon". I am also listening to the pounding of the shinglers who started this morning at 6:30 a.m. I keep listening by the kids' door to see if they are up, but they appear to be sleeping and I am okay with that. It was kind of a late night for them since it was our first day of harvest and we got to bring food out and ride with Peter for a little while. I am going to admit something.. Yesterday I was driving to my dentist appointment and I was thinking... "I wonder how the world would be if people were just a little more giving with their time and less selfish." Thinking hard about that-- i really think that might change a lot. These days people are greedy and lots of times just think about themselves. How can I get ahead?  Who will help ME?  What can you do for ME?  So, it just hit me as I was writing this... I wasn't very giving with my time last night. My attitude with the girls was... "let's hurry and get you to bed so that i can do MY stuff".  Sometimes I just feel like a horrible mother.  I feel like I am willing to accommodate Peter and especially Emily while she's here, but what about kate and maddy?  Why am I always in such a hurry to get them to their naps and bedtime?  Change... that is what I need. And though I am praying about this and asking God for change, he just isn't ready to allow that right now and I have to accept it. I know the attitude I need to have or should have, yet I don't do it.  "My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is my strength and my portion forever" - Psalm 73:26.  That is written on my chalkboard above my dining room table.  Ok God... give me the strength!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

What's new...

This is what's new at our house... recipes soon!


I just wanted to say thank you Lord, for the guidance He gives me each day to do His will, even if I don't always listen. This morning a specific prayer has been answered in where to give money and I felt He pressed me to give to Somolia.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


people are invading my house, and we're only putting on shingles! I feel like in every window we are being watched. I don't think i'd do well with a major renovation inside the house... like the kitchen. I think we pretty much ruled out at this point that we wouldn't update the kitchen even though we really want to. We just felt God saying no. Also, the kids have slept through all the knocking for the most part- thank you God!

Anyway, --we are also out of TV, which means there's nothing to do at our house when the kids go to bed. I never, hardly ever watch TV, but Peter is a blessing in disguise!  so it was really fun and weird to see him just sit there. I thought it'd be a good opportunity to do devotions together - so we did and then fell asleep close after 9:30pm. I feel like I got a good nights rest. Harvest is coming up; I know it'll be lots of work and I'll be in the kitchen a lot, but I feel for the most part I do it as joyfully as I can. I really do love to see their happy faces when they get to eat the food. Over the last year I realized it's my small part in helping the men out when they do so much to provide for our family.

My goal this week:  keep up with the house!

Sunday, August 7, 2011


It has been a fun week at Vacation Bible School. I didn't help much, but I did take lots of pictures. I tried to edit this week as little as I could because I wanted to get other things done, but I used Lightroom which made it much quicker!! I worked on a slideshow yesterday, which literally took all day. I first tried to burn it to a DVD- that didn't work. Then I tried other things...finally after several hours of uploading, it posted to You-Tube at midnight. Bummer though... poor connection at church so it didn't even get played. 

This week I plan to do a lot of baking and cooking, and have my dentist appointment scheduled for Wednesday. (boo) I have attempted and failed several times to make a meal plan--they might be combining towards the end of the week so I can't really plan for those days in case they change. I suppose it would be okay to have things as a back-up. I am really tired after the last few days-- I feel like I have been going non-stop. I could have used a rest this afternoon but I was in the kitchen preparing for our picnic tonight at Florian park. I WILL go to bed early tonight though! It's already 9:30 and I am pretty exhausted... I can hardly keep my eyes open. Mondays are always so incredibly busy because I try to catch up after the house gets trashed from the weekend, not to mention loads and loads of laundry, meal prep for the week, and tomorrow we have a crew coming to do shingles... so lunch will be prepared here. Must sleep soon so I can get up early!!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

time is slipping away

Wow.  It has been really hard to wake up the last few days. I set my alarm for 6:30 and sometimes I don't get out of bed until 7. Today at least it was 6:45 but I was pretty grumpy. Poor Peter, he was such a good sport. He just kept saying that I was a stinker or "you're something else" and laughed.

I have many things on my to-do list today. The last three nights have been VBS (Vacation Bible School) at our church, so we've been there from 6-8:30 which amounts to late bedtimes. The kids do well at sleeping in because of this. I've been taking photos for the website/facebook page and also for a craft they will do Thursday, so I'm in the process of editing and uploading them to Walmart's One Hour Lab so that we can get them back tonight. I sure hope they turn out. I'm behind on laundry, dishes, meals, editing, baking (peter can't pack a lunch so I have to figure out what I could bring out to him; he's also asked for baked snacks) and I'd really like to work out. Monday I was too tired, Tuesday I was gone all day, and today it seems I'm too busy! I think tonight for VBS I might do a drop-off with Kate since there's nothing for Maddy to do and I'll come back later to pick her up. I've volunteered to help with things but they don't really say anything so it gets to be long when we just sit around and watch.

Yesterday I was scheduled for a dentist appointment, and an hour before I was to leave, they called to cancel. She had a sick child. That was kind of a bummer but I still went because I had to bring Peter to GF so he could get snacks for the farm for Harvest (water, juice, chips,-the whole back was filled with stuff) and so he could do paperwork and bring back a new truck they purchased. He dropped me off at a store and went to Sams to do his stuff, then we ate at a really slow restaurant, and then I brought him to Amazing Grains so that he could bring back the cold items since I would be in GF for a little while longer.  He was then dropped off at the truck place. I called him after I had gone to one store and was at Target and he informed me he ran out of gas!! The gauge was off and he was halfway home, and ran out of gas. He was so dissapointed. He sat there for about an hour or longer to get help, and by that time I had already made it to Warren. Poor guy. I hope his day is better today. Well, since I have so much to do I better get started instead of blogging!

Monday, August 1, 2011

not fair

Those are the two words I'm feeling right now. I am feeling depressed-like but also rejoicing. The little girl I had been praying for died Saturday night. Thalia died a week before. I just feel raw, but rejoicing that she is suffering no more. I couldn't sleep last night, of course, so I came onto the computer to write an email and saw an update on a blog . It's just not fair. I just don't understand the suffering. I don't understand why some have to go through this, and others have humongously blessed lives. I definitely have respect and admiration for those who are working right in front of those children and watching this happen. I don't think I could do it. 

Read Marilice's story... it was one of the hardest ones I've had to read.