Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Seasons of Life

There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven.
Ecclesiastes 3:1

The season has changed here in our part of the world.
Just a few weeks ago everything was still green and growing,
but now it has all changed.  Half of the leaves are now on the ground,
the hedge apples are falling with a thud in the woods,
and we are enjoying the cooler temperatures and warm drinks.

Seasons can change in our lives just as quickly.
Just last spring and summer our children were all growing up
and becoming more independent, they didn't need me much
anymore, and I was bored, wondering what to do with my life!
Um, yeah, those days are past!!

Now I spend my time reading "boops" to a little sweet girl,
taking her outside to feed the animals or play in the sandbox,
homeschooling AJ and SJ, and trying to keep 8 people's
schedules straight.  Oh yeah, and somewhere in there I need
to wash clothes, buy an overflowing cart full of food each week,
go to doctor appointments, have social worker visits, and
keep my house clean... My mind is full and overflowing,
just like that shopping cart.

Where I used to have all the time in the world to have my
devotions and do Bible studies, now I have a little girl
sitting next to me begging me to read her another "boop"
instead of reading my Bible, and then while I'm reading she's
climbing all over me, trying to snuggle in, needing her diaper
changed, or wanting some breakfast.  Trust me, I'm not complaining!
It's just a different season.  So right now I'm trying to figure
out my new season of life, how to keep everything in balance,
and trying to remember how I did this seven years ago!

The difference between now and then is, this time I know that
things will only be like this with Miss E for a short time, and
then she will be growing up and becoming more independent,
just like the boys are.  So I will enjoy all the interruptions, and
sitting and watching her play in the sandbox, and not having a
clean house, and not getting any projects done.  Because it will
all change soon, and I will be back in the season of being bored
and wondering what to do with myself!  I know God understands
that I just can't do an in-depth Bible study right now, but I can
read a chapter of the Bible, an encouraging article, or listen to
a sermon on the radio.  And I can always pray throughout the
day or at night when I can't sleep.  He understands.

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize
with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted
in every way, just as we are- yet was without sin.  Let us then
approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may
receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
Hebrews 4:15-16

Friday, October 24, 2014

One of those good days

Today was one of those homeschooling days that just went well.  It's nice to have those every once in a while.  We have a science experiment book that we are using this year and one of the lessons was on yeast and how it works. So after learning all about how yeast is alive and likes to eat sugar, which gives it a lot of gas, (carbon dioxide), and how the gluten in the flour makes the air bubbles that hold the gas, we decided to make our own bread.

The boys decided they wanted to make butterhorn rolls.  These are a family favorite. They each had their own bowl of dough, and they did a great job, as you can see!  Everyone enjoyed the results for supper. I've included the recipe below if you'd like to make some.

Butterhorn Rolls

2 tsp. yeast
1/4 c. warm water
1 T. sugar
1 c. water
1/2 c. butter
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/3 c. sugar
4 c. flour
melted butter

Dissolve yeast in 1/4 c. warm water with 1 T. sugar.  In separate large bowl combine 1 c. water with 1/2 c. butter, eggs, salt and 1/3 c. sugar. Add yeast mixture. Stir in enough flour to make a soft dough that's not sticky. Knead and form into a ball.  Let rise till double.  Divide dough in half.  Roll each half into a 12 inch circle. Brush with melted butter. Cut dough into 12 wedges. Roll each one up, starting at wide edge. Place on cookie sheet and let rise till double. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tea with Miss E

This afternoon Miss E and I had our first little tea party together!
It was so fun, the weather was perfect, the leaves were drifting down,
and the company was excellent! (:

We were still able to find a few pretty zinnias for our tea tray.

So sweet!  I wish I could show you her pretty smile, but not yet...

We had a lovely time!  I think we might have to make this a habit.

In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall!

~Robert Louis Stevenson~

I am joining Sandi's Tea Time Tuesday

Monday, October 20, 2014

Lake time

We spent a much needed weekend break at a cabin on a lake near us this last weekend, and I'm so glad we did!  Life has been so crazy lately that we needed a little time to just relax and enjoy each other's company again.  We taught the kids to play the card game, Pit, which they actually loved!  Usually we have a hard time finding a game everyone enjoys.  We borrowed my parents' rowboat and the older kids rowed out to an island 1/2 mile away.  We went on the prettiest fall hike I've been on in a while, I don't think the kids appreciated it as much as me, but oh well!  The younger boys had fun climbing all over the rocks that lined the shore, and I mostly tried to keep Miss E out of trouble!  Life with a toddler is a lot different than life with older kids, as I am quickly remembering!  Sometimes I get so tired, but then I remember these verses that have always been a comfort to me during the seasons of life when we've had little kids--

He tends his flock like a shepherd:
He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
he gently leads those that have young.
Isaiah 40:11

Friday, October 10, 2014

Making Apple Crisp

There is a cool breeze blowing,
the leaves are drifting down,
and the smell of apple crisp is in the air!
This morning in between home schooling, I made
up an apple crisp for our lunch today.  I had a little
helper, as you can see!  Miss E was my chief taste
tester- she decided sugar tastes a whole lot better
than flour!  She loves to help me cook, which makes
me happy, but I think what she likes best is sampling
everything.  Her brothers aren't too happy about this,
but what can I say?  She's just so cute...
Apple crisp is a great way to enjoy the flavors of
fall without being as time consuming as a pie.
It also works very well to make it gluten free,
just use a gluten free flour blend in place of
the regular flour.  Here's the recipe I use all the time-
Apple Crisp
6 c. peeled and sliced apples
3/4 c. white sugar
1 T. flour
1 tsp. cinnamon
Mix and place in a greased 9x9 inch baking dish.
3/4 c. oatmeal
3/4 c. flour
3/4 c. brown sugar
1/3 c. melted butter
1/4 tsp. soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
Mix above till crumbly and place on top of apples.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes.  Serve warm with whip cream or ice cream!

Friday, October 3, 2014


What a sweet word it is!
And now our little Miss E is home to stay-
that's right!  Today we drove up and brought
her home for good.  The adoption isn't finalized
yet, but she no longer needs to go back to her
foster home.  We are so glad!!!
On October 9 of last year our social worker first
told us about Miss E, and now, almost exactly one
year later, she is home.  I never would have guessed
that it would take so long, and I wish there was something
that could be done so others don't have to wait so long
either, but I'm not sure what that would be.
But all that is behind us now and we are ready
to settle in and just live life together!
Earlier in the week Miss E "helped" me plant 90
daffodils and grape hyacinths in the secret garden.
It's always a lot of work to plant bulbs, and you don't
see the fruits of your labor for a long time, but
it's worth it in the spring!
Maybe the longer the wait, the sweeter the reward-
both in daffodils and adopting? (:

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