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Saturday, May 30, 2009

The Health Benefits of Oregano - Is Oregano a Health Food?

So, you look forward to that oregano tang in your pizza sauce, and its little leaves make a nice addition to the herb patch. It gives an immediate kick to spaghetti, and it isn't a demanding resident in the garden, coming back year after year with just a little mulching and pruning. Is there more to oregano that might make it a super herb, the go-to herb for your health as well as your culinary

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Growing Rosemary in Cold Climates

Rosemary is a big favorite at my house. From keeping a dwarf rosemary Christmas tree to having creeping rosemary as a companion in my flowerbeds, this old gal is a friend who defines the herb keeping hobby for me. I made my first herb wreath using rosemary as a base.I got my stock from a local strip mall where the cobbler in residence in one of the storefronts had a big rosemary bush just

Dinner for Two



As I was strolling through the locally grown section in our grocery store, I was happy to come upon some freshly harvested morel mushrooms. Hubby is a connoisseur of wild mushrooms, and in fact, spends many hours in our surrounding forests looking for these hidden treasures.



So I thought I'd surprise him with a special dinner...just for two.

The menu included grilled Painted Hills New York Steak with sauteed wild morel mushrooms and organic cabbage salad.

Cold watermelon for dessert.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Another Milestone

Today we celebrated another milestone in our family. Our grandson Jaxson Price Turner was one year old. Love you my little sweetie!


Jaxson at one day old.


Jaxson at one year. What a cutie!

One Feminist's About-Face

Wow. This is startling to see in print... a former feminist and champion for women's rights now believes women should be home with their kids.

SHE IS one of feminism's pioneers and founder of the UK's first refuge for victims of domestic violence, but after decades of fighting for women's rights Erin Pizzey has come to a startling conclusion: women should stay at home and look after the children while men go out to work.

Her revelations don't stop there. Pizzey also believes that with mothers away from home working, their child's development will be harmed. Her views are supported by new research conducted by Birbeck College in London, which suggests that the longer children are in childcare, as opposed to with parents, the more aggressive they become.

... In [a new BBC2] programme, she says: "I think the traditional way the family was run has been going for thousands of years and it works. What I see now is men disenfranchised from their roles. Women are lost because they now have to work full-time. They don't have a choice. There is no proper child care, there's nobody home when the children come home." (Hat tip: Ladies Against Feminism)


I'm stunned -- how delightful to see someone who is willing to really look hard at the mess we westerners have gotten ourselves into and actually admit that perhaps we've misprioritized our lives. Thoughts?

Birds in the Garden

Robin's NestMay 26, 2009It is very important to attract a wide variety of birds to your garden and I have written about attracting birds to our gardens before (here). Ideally at some point you should notice a bird of prey if you are going about attracting birds to your garden in the correct manner. At that point you should give yourself a bit of a pat on the back. What you have accomplished is

Feels Like Summer

As the last of the lilacs began to fade over the warm holiday weekend, we worked hard getting things done in the yard. Although not officially, I believe summer has arrived. With that, we are all the more eager to finish a few things in the yard so that we may enjoy many, many, many lazy days this summer.



While Mike's Dad was out visiting from Wisconsin over the long weekend, father and son put in all 20 posts for our soon-to-be picket fence. Both are engineers, and I can assure you that we will have the straightest, the strongest, and the most beautiful fence one could ever ask for.

Cilantro Salsa Recipe

Pico de Gallo is the queen of fresh salsa, but this easy recipe runs a close second. Some cooks will tell you that the lime juice is optional, but I think it works perfectly with the cilantro to create a unique flavor combo. Cilantro Salsa Recipe5 *Roma (plum) tomatoes, peeled and seeded,3 Tbsp. Cilantro4 Tbsp. Scallions2 Garlic cloves2 Jalapeno peppers, chopped½ Tbsp. Lemon juice1 Tbsp. Lime

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Herb Mayonnaise Recipes

This is a basic do-it-yourself mayonnaise recipe, and the results are better than anything you can get in the store. It's delicious. Really. Spice it up with the herb additions that follow the recipe.

Basic Mayonnaise Recipe

1 1/2 Cups Canola or olive oil (You can blend the two together)
2 Pasteurized Egg yolks
1/8 tsp. Powdered mustard
1/2 tsp. Salt
1 Tbsp. Lemon juice

Blend eggs, salt and

Seven Things About Me

I was tagged by Zita, who has a lovely blog that I enjoy Mlle Magpie, to share seven things about myself and then pass this along to seven interesting people that I would love to know more about. Thanks so much Zita for honoring me!

1~I will be 50 (how did that happen?) next month. Oy vay!

2~My favorite color is brown.

3~I am a terrible procrastinator but a type A personality.

4~I hate housework and do less of it all the time.

5~I have way more ideas and projects in my brain than time.

6~I am madly in love with my two grandbabies.

7~The older I get, the less afraid I am to dress weird.

Okay now for my selection of sistas and one dude to pass this along to:

1~Deb of Talking Trash.

2~Lulu of 2Chippys.

3~Sue of Bella Shabby.

4~Jermonne of Barn House.

5~Tina of Dream In Cream.

6~Lisa of La Rustique Market.

7~Margo of Margo's Junkin' Journal.

Tag, you're it!

Easy Cilantro Soup Recipe

Make a wholesome cilantro soup with you first herb patch harvest. This creamy soup is great with a classic BLT.After you start the roux (flour and butter mixture), stir constantly until all the liquid has been added to the pan. Add the broth slowly to avoid lumps.Fresh Cilantro Soup Recipe1 1/2 C Fresh cilantro3 12-oz. Cans beef broth2 Tbsp. Flour2 Tbsp. Butter2 Minced garlic cloves2 Tbsp.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Growing Cilantro In Containers






In a previous post, I discussed basic cilantro/coriander growing techniques but didn't address the option of growing cilantro in a container. Cilantro has a taproot, which means that it roots deeply. This makes it a poor candidate for transplanting, and pretty much also means that it needs a deep pot. The other option is to grow it in a soilless medium like a hydroponics setup.


Growing

Friday, May 22, 2009

Herbal Treatment for a Bee Sting





So, you've planted all those herbs designed to attract butterflies and provide you with spicy food and wonderful fragrances all summer. Suddenly, you discover a small problem. The plants you're worrying over and nurturing - literally on bended knee, are also attracting bees and all manner of stinging pests.

If you rile up a bee, wasp, or yellow jacket and end up with a nasty stinger in

Wise-Worded Women

Lately, I've been contemplating all kinds of things...
And other things too...

...and I keep coming back to the idea that I, as a young woman, need to be actively and carefully pursuing wisdom. Not for wisdom's sake... but so that I can "SERVE with joy" as is advised in the video linked above. So that I can wisely COUNSEL my husband when he needs it, in order to assist him and propel him in the way the Proverbs woman does. So that I can JOYFULLY speak truth and remain faithful in hard times, as the wife & mother of young children who is dying from cancer has done. So that my words become DEPENDABLE and STEADY... that I might never be that woman who is as annoying as a constant dripping sound... that I might never drive my husband insane with incessant nagging and impossible expectations. So that I can OFFER wise teaching and influence in the lives of my growing children. So that I might really and truly LOVE.

FLIMSY, DRIPPY, UNWISE WORDS
Last week, I really blew it. Though there was undoubtedly a mix of hormones, culture stress, sadness at Doug's impending week away, and honest frustration, I was anything but steady. My words were not solid words of wise counsel. They were flimsy and faithless. What was I lacking? Self-control? Surely. A long-term perspective? Absolutely. I was lacking wisdom.

It is so easy to write off our sin as "hormonal". Or the effects of a bad day. Or as a natural response to something really rotten. But the truth is that as women, one of the things we will be later called to teach to other women is "self-control". So we ought to be learning it while we're younger, it seems to me.

Instead of adding to what should be a growing reservoir of dependable wisdom flowing out of my mouth, so that my husband could be confident in his trust of me, I acted like the drippy wife. Grumping. Griping. Throwing words around.

Oh, how much I want to be a woman who speaks wisely! A woman who keeps her mouth shut when foolish things would try to escape from her lips (or fingers, if writing!)... and a woman who speaks when prompted by the Spirit of God. A woman who knows and skillfully wields God's Word as a balm to the hurting, an encouragement to the discouraged, a help to the searcher, an exhortation to the wanderer, and instruction to the young. A woman who does not seek after her own glory or what will be the most comfortable and attractive... but who seeks after the glory of God and works towards the good of others.

And it always comes back to:
IN ORDER TO DO THAT, I NEED TO KNOW GOD'S WORD.
So what am I going to do about it? Each day, I spend time cooking. Cleaning. Reading-- for myself and to my children. Learning a language. Spending time with my awesome husband. Playing guitar and dancin' with the kiddos... and none of it is bad. But if I neglect the main things-- knowing Christ, knowing His Word, spending time in prayer so that He might change me... it will slowly (or maybe even quickly) erode away at what I am able to live out. I may get the externals right-- but it will be hollow-- propped up by only my own ways & thoughts rather than the ways & words of Christ.

God tells us-- EXPLICITLY TELLS US-- that if we need wisdom, HE WILL GIVE IT.

That verse has been a life verse for Doug & I. When we need wisdom in our marriage, we ask for it. Before we have dinner with friends that have acted wisely in some area of their lives, we ask for God to give us wisdom through the conversation. When we need to know what to do, we ask for wisdom. When we don't know how to pray, we ask for wisdom. And He so faithfully gives... and a large portion of that is through the things He's already written to us.

THE ANSWER IS IN THE WORD; THE ANSWER IS THE WORD.
The Bible is powerful and active... but we have to be meditating on it. It won't bulldoze us over as though it's a magic spell-- we have to let it work in us and through us. I don't have it all figured out, but I know this:
IF I WANT TO BE A WISE-WORDED WOMAN,
I NEED TO BE A WOMAN OF THE WORD.


I've gotta be reading and meditating on Scripture. And so that's what I'm off to do before bed tonight.


How are you doing in the area of knowing the Word and using it wisely-- in your own life and in the lives of others? What parts of Scripture have been meaningful to you in dealing with the drippyness of our complain-filled mouths and minds as women? Please, share-- anything and everything you think might be helpful for me or others facing tough days and pursuing wisdom.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thanks Peg

I bought this fabulous old cast iron floor lamp last spring from Terri (Garden Worthy) at Marburger. Mr. Sweet Pea re-wired it and it now sits in my living room. It even came with the old tubular bulbs. Love it! But it needed a little somethin' somethin'... And so, this spring Peg (French Vanilla) had these adorable lampshades that were dripping with old seam binding wrapped around them in rumpled bows. Peg was kind enough to let me snap some pics and I decided that this treatment was exactly what my lamp needed. Here's my version... What do you think?



Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Lightbulb Moment!

I have recently become aware of the fact that I am a bonafide geek. Really.

Evidence?

* Watching Antiques Roadshow (now free for viewing online @ pbs.org-wahoo!!!) or BBC/Nat'l Geographic specials is as delightful as slurping down a bucket of ice cream for me, plus-- my knowledge is the only thing that grows bigger when I slurp down a history special.
* We don't own a TV and like it that way (we do any DVD viewing on our laptops). We miss out on TV & movie trends, but that is A-OK with us.
* Like most women, I like to shop... but what I like to shop for is books. My public Amazon wishlist is quite lengthy... and I have a private Amazon wishlist as well, and it's even longer.
* Learning about history is a main event in our home... (case in point: the night before last, we all lined up on the couch-- even our 1 & 2 year olds were sitting still-- for an hour while we watched a PBS special about Thomas Jefferson. That's right, Thomas Jefferson. I'm telling you, we are dweebs.)
* I'm far too excited about the twenty-or-so tomato plants growing on our balcony.
* After trying out the lemon juice ink trick for secret messages (it didn't work for us, maybe we did something wrong?), my almost-7-year-old and I had a blast writing each other notes throughout the afternoon yesterday in a fancy cipher spy code from a new book of his.


And these are just a few examples. Really, I'm a geek. And I'm completely OK with that. :) Anyone else willing to own up to geekiness?

Roses in Literature

The next time you think your roses may not be worth the effort you expend on them, read some of these inspiring lines about the queen of flowers:"Our highest assurance of the goodness of Providence seems to me to rest in the flowers. All other things, our powers, our desires, our food, are all really necessary for our existence in the first instance. But this rose is an extra. Its smell and its

Herbs in Literature

Depending on what you enjoy reading, that book on your nightstand may include some interesting herb references. Many herbs have been the stuff of poetry and prose, to say nothing of those very entertaining old herbals. I've tried to collect a few references to herbs in literature for you to enjoy after you come in from the garden. Check out the following pages for some old and new favorites:

Rue Quotes From Literature

Cozy up with these quotes about rue. I was going to restrict myself to quotes about the plant itself, but rue, as in regret, has some cunning literary references I had to include:There’s rosemary and rue. These keepSeeming and savor all the winter long.Grace and remembrance be to you.-William Shakespeare (Winter’s Tale, Act 4, Scene 4)There's fennel for you, and columbines:there's rue for you;

Rue Quotes From Literature

Cozy up with these quotes about rue. I was going to restrict myself to quotes about the plant itself, but rue, as in regret, has some cunning literary references I had to include:There’s rosemary and rue. These keepSeeming and savor all the winter long.Grace and remembrance be to you.- William Shakespeare (Winter’s Tale, Act 4, Scene 4)There's fennel for you, and columbines:there's rue for you;

Monday, May 18, 2009

Rosemary Quotes From Literature



Enjoy some literary references to rosemary while you garden this weekend:

Of Rosemarie.
Tragus writeth, that Rosemarie is spice in the Germane Kitchins, and other cold countries... The floures made vp into plates with sugar after the manner of Sugar Roset and eaten, comfort the heart, and make it merry, quicken the spirits, and make them more liuely."

Herball or General Historie of Plantes
-

The Flower Farm


My Mom and I stopped in at the Flower Farm today. I hadn't been by since the daffodils were blooming so I was excited to see what they'd have. We weren't disappointed as there was a variety of Peony in full bloom.



They're so beautiful.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Mark Driscoll on Pride

Insightful words from Driscoll on pride & self-esteem (from the sermon, "Humble Pastors" looking at 1 Peter 5:1-5).
"Pride is demonic. ...Ever since [Eden], pride has been the problem. Most of us don't even understand that it's a problem, because satan also went into the marketing business and he's repackaged pride as self-esteem. Utter nonsense!

'Well You need to have self-esteem.' No you don't! Your identity is in Christ; your joy is in Christ! ... Live for God's glory, not your own!
...
'Well what about self-help?' That's the problem! We don't help ourselves; we need Jesus. It's not self-help, self-esteem, self-actualization. It's God, it's Christ, it's grace, it's gospel, it's glory to Him! We miss this totally.

You see this starting at youth. This is like a toxin that's put into your soul from birth. "Oh, you're a snowflake, you're special, there's no one like you." There was a study that came out; they tested American kids versus kids around the world. We score the lowest in geography, scored really low in math, really low in reading, and really high-- among the highest in the world-- in self-esteem.

This is what happens... "you can be anything you want, you can do anything you want to do, you're a snowflake, you can even go to Burger King and get it your way, right away." ... It's crazy-- you live in a insane, demonically-inspired culture that wants to make you the center of the universe, wants to make your glory the penultimate goal of your existence, and wants you to think that everyone should bow down and realize how amazing you are and it's satanic. No help at all. Because God opposes the proud. Think about that. To be proud is to fight God. And God gives grace to the humble.

...What we don't need is pride; we need grace. ..."God I need help; I need a Savior. I don't need self-esteem; I need identity in Christ. I don't need to self-actualize; I need to worship You, live for Your glory. I need to get out of myself; I'm addicted to myself. I think about myself. I love myself. All the time, and only my self."

I've said it before, I'll say it again-- there are times and ways that I have failed you. This is utterly condemning: arrogance, haughtiness, boastfulness. I have failed you. I deeply regret ways I have acted, things I have said. I ask your forgiveness. I would ask us all to follow Jesus. I hope by God's grace to grow in this.

... We're all so proud. CJ (Mahaney) says the best we can say is: "We are proud people pursuing humility by the grace of God."

Good stuff, there. What say you?

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Natural Bed Bug Control




These herbal treatments for bed bugs can help you control your pest problem. I have a healthy respect for insects and all manner of creepy crawlies, but I have to draw the line at any bug that considers me a walking banquet. This includes mosquitoes, fleas, and bed bugs. Bed bugs are creating problems across the U.S these days. Areas where there are large numbers of sleeping people, like

Tulipa tarda

Tulipa tardaMarch 26, 2009The mystery plant has been identified! Thanks so much to those who commented on the previous post as well those who helped through email and Twitter. I appreciate your help very much in identifying this plant.It is Tulipa tarda a dwarf tulip species. It is a member of the lily family (Liliaceae). These tulips are planted in clumps along with daylilies to protect them

Friday, May 15, 2009

MIA

So you ask, where have I been? Here and there, to and fro, like sagebrush caught in the wind. Have you ever had a period of time where you just couldn't finish anything you started, couldn't get out of your own way? Well that is where I've been. Starting several new projects, finishing none. Dabbling. Driving myself crazy. I know WHAT I want to do~~so as Nike says~~why can't I "Just Do IT"! Words of enouragement appreciated here...

I'll be back...

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Please Help Identify

"Unknown"March 26, 2009Please Help Identify: Oh the joys of moving into a home with overgrown gardens and still discovering new plant varieties as we continue our quest to tame the jungle. We have several patches of this unknown plant. I think it is a daylily based on the leaves and flower appearance. The flower is two tone yellow with six petals, 3 on 3 on a single stem. The flower is about

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Sustaining Contentment

Lately, I've struggled with contentment. Or maybe a better way to say it would be that I've *noticed* an ongoing struggle with contentment in my life. While life is not gumdrop perfect in any way, I have so many blessings and joys in life... and yet I struggle to maintain the elusive "attitude of gratitude" (I loathe cheesy rhymes and phrases, but this one is so perfect for what I need to cultivate that I'm going with it.) and be content. Sometimes it's the people, sometimes it's the place, sometimes it's the circumstances... but I am now realizing that I have allowed seeds of discontented bitterness to spring up in my life unabated.

Yesterday, I came across some helpful advice and wise words... all of which seem directed at me:
  1. QUICKLY DEAL WITH THE SIN YOU SEE IN YOUR LIFE - Jay Adams offers sage wisdom about not harboring sin in your heart. Sadly, I have seen the effects of what happens when I as a believer allow sin to creep in and claim and control portions of my life... particularly in my thoughts.
  2. Reading Psalm 51 is always one of the first places I go when I need to confess sin-- ESPECIALLY when I don't feel like it, when I'd rather just maintain the status-quo. "Have mercy"... "wash me thoroughly"... "against You have I sinned"... "purge me"... "blot out"... "create", "renew", "restore", "uphold", "deliver". I love Psalm 51's honesty about sin and its target of renewal and restoration... as the living and active Word of God, when I read it and use it as a prayer to the LORD, it somehow works in me to bring about a right attitude even when I start out with a rebellious, self-focused desire to stay the same.
  3. PRESCRIPTION FOR CONTENTMENT: "*Never allow yourself to complain about anything - not even the weather. *Never picture yourself in any other circumstances or someplace else. *Never compare your lot with another’s. *Never allow yourself to wish this or that had been otherwise. *Never dwell on tomorrow - remember that [tomorrow] is God’s, not ours." Good advice. And it's now up on my fridge, cause I need to read it again and again. :)
  4. I somehow ran across this old post: A LIFE WITHOUT COMPLAINING (Excellent advice here!)
  5. This Puritan Prayer-- "HEART CORRUPTIONS"

    O God, may Thy Spirit speak in me that I may speak to thee. I have no merit, let the merit of Jesus stand for me. I am undeserving, but I look to Thy tender mercy. I am full of infirmities, wants, sin; Thou art full of grace.

    I confess my sin, my frequent sin, my wilful sin; all my powers of body and soul are defiled: a fountain of pollution is deep within my nature. There are chambers of foul images within my being; I have gone from one odious room to another, walked in a no-man's-land of dangerous imaginations, pried into the secrets of my fallen nature.

    I am utterly ashamed that I am what I am in myself; I have no green shoot in me nor fruit, but thorns and thistles; I am a fading leaf that the wind drives away; I live bare and barren as a winter tree, unprofitable, fit to be hewn down and burnt. Lord, dost Thou have mercy on me?

    Thou hast struck a heavy blow at my pride, at the false god of self, and I lie in pieces before Thee. But Thou hast given me another master and lord, Thy Son, Jesus, and now my heart is turned towards holiness, my life speeds as an arrow from a bow towards complete obedience to Thee. Help me in all my doings to put down sin and to humble pride. Save me from the love of the world and the pride of life, from everything that is natural to fallen man, and let Christ's nature be seen in me day by day. Grant me grace to bear Thy will without repining, and delight to be not only chiselled, squared, or fashioned, but separated from the old rock where I have been embedded so long, and lifted from the quarry to the upper air, where I may be built in Christ for ever.

  6. And then today came this story of a woman content to be confined to life in a metal tube for 60 years. Truly, contentment is worth the having. Just as discontentedness can change blessings to seeming-curses, contentment can change miserable circumstances to delightful ones.
This week, I have to tell you, I really got fed up with refinement. What a poor attitude for a believer, a Christ-follower, to have! I wanted to run from His sanctifying and changing work in me and just "be left alone for a while" (as I told a friend). But that is not the road of Christ. Though it hurts, though it is tiring, though it threatens to make me into something new and the new can be frightening, though it feels as though the road keeps narrowing for me, though the self-grown protective scales must be ripped off to reveal the soft flesh beneath... it's really what I want.

And I say that with resignment. I'll confess- I'm not always an eager trooper for Christ. I want to be. I want to want Him. But I so often fail... it is in these moments that I am thankful that HE is the One that keeps me and it is not my own goodness that will recommend and reconcile me to Him.

How do you cultivate contentment in your life? How do you stave off bitterness and a critical nature? What Scriptures, books, articles, or advice have helped you in your fight for joy and delight in the LORD?

Monday, May 11, 2009

Unusual Herb Garden Design

If you've had daydreams of creating your own decorative herb garden design layout but don't have the space or inclination for a decorative wheel or other more complex pattern, there may be an easy way to create a startling effect with less space and work.Making a permaculture herb spiral will make great use of those bricks you have lying around, and the effects can be attractive, eye catching,

Friday, May 8, 2009

Quotes On My Mind Today...

Instead of brain-dumping, I thought I'd share these quotes which are all rattling around in my heart and mind... from a variety of books I'm currently reading... hopefully they'll speak to you as well:


If you have a genuine desire to please God, you will want to discern as much of His will as you can. You will be faithfully storing up Scripture, properly interpreted and related to other passages of Scripture, every day. You will not wait until the problem comes to go running for your Bible. The more that you learn through daily study and thoughtful, meditative assimilation of the truth into life, the more prepared you will be to meet it when the crunch comes on Thursday. ... Don't be concerned about how much or how little knowledge you have at the moment; just continually get all that you can. ~Jay Adams, What To Do On Thursday

@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @

Love must be learned, and learned and learned again
; there is no end to it. Hate needs no instruction, but waits only to be provoked. ~Katherine Anne Porter

@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @

Jesus
did live in a family, and as Betsy Ricucci points out, that's all He had done at the time the Father proclaimed, "This is my Son, whom I love; with Him I am well pleased" (Mt 3:17). "What had Jesus done to receive such praise? Nothing but live in His own home, honoring His parents and serving His father's carpentry business. Apparently that was enough to please God." ~Gary Thomas, Sacred Marriage

@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @

We live in slavery. True, we have (in Western countries) abolished the institutionalized forms of slavery... [but] Freedom is on everyone's lips. Freedom is announced and celebrated. But not many feel or act free. Evidence? We live in a nation of complainers and a society of addicts. Everywhere we turn we hear complaints... and everywhere we meet the addicts. We trade masters; we stay enslaved.

The Christian is the person who recognizes that our real problem is not in achieving freedom but in learning service under a better master. ~Eugene Peterson, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction

@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @

Principles of Bible Interpretation... [selected points I found particularly helpful]:
* Avoid any brand-new interpretations. (The Spirit is at work in others besides you.)
* Pursue a well-rounded emphasis in the study of the whole counsel of God. (Some go overboard for one kind of study (e.g., prophecy)-- don't!)
* Don't sacrifice thoroughness and care for speed. (Take adequate time; it is better to come to no conclusion that to the wrong one.)
~Jay Adams, What To Do On Thursday

@ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @


The LORD is good,
a stronghold in the day of trouble;
He knows those who take refuge in Him.
~Nahum 1:7

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Porch Lights



Our porch lights are up! These beautiful schoolhouse lights came from Rejuvenation, which is the fabulous store in which we purchased all of our reproduction items.



We went with the old brass finish to match the exterior door hardware from Emtek and I have to say that it really does make the porch feel complete. It's a nice finishing touch after a year of using those temporary plastic fixtures from the hardware store.

This was our last big order from Rejuvenation and it feels pretty wonderful. We've come a long way since the summer of 2006 when we bought the place.




Biblical Descriptions of Mothers

[First, a sidenote: Last month, while reading through a book that had been highly recommended to me, I realized something that seems contradictory:
  1. In my own personal study, lists help me to understand what I'm reading. It is a great assistance for my memory and understanding to take information from Scripture as I read and better understand a passage or biblical subject by simplifying the larger whole down into understandable parts. (See this post on biblical descriptions of women or this post on Psalm 119 for examples of what I'm talking about.)
  2. However, I do *not* like to read lists. (The book that had been recommended was one chapter after another of bullet-pointed lists of biblical information... and it hit me as I was reading that it's the very thing that I do in my own study, but that form of "reading" was very off-putting to me and I couldn't get past the first couple of chapters. I kept trying to read further, because of how highly the book had been spoken of, but it is extremely unhelpful for me to take in information in list format, so I finally gave up and replaced it on my shelf.)
So, if you are one who is like me, I apologize in advance for this post. This is one way that I process and glean from God's Word. But perhaps it is helpful for you to see it in this way, in which case, by all means, read on. :) ~Jess]


Here are some of the significant or insightful ways that God, in His Word, describes mothers, and some things we can learn from the stories of mothers in Scripture.

POSITIVE OR NEUTRAL BIBLICAL DESCRIPTIONS OF MOTHERS:
  • From the beginning, the plan and pattern for motherhood is that children "leave and cleave". (Gen 2:24, Mt 19:4-6)
  • She is to be protected by her husband. (Gen 32, Mt 2:13)
  • A mother's heart desires protection for her children. (Exod 2, 1 Ki 3:26)
  • She is to be honored and cared for by her children. (Exod 20:12, Lev 19:3, Deut 5:16, 27:16, Mt 15:3-9, Jn 19:26-27)
  • She should never be struck or cursed by her children. (Exod 21)
  • A mother is to be modest around her children. (Lev 18)
  • She is to instruct and discipline her children. (Deut 21:18)
  • Fathers and mothers teach, advise, help, love, and guide their children together. (Judg 14, 1 Ki 2:19, Prov 1:8, 6:20, Lk 2:33, 48)
  • Her early care, physical affection, availability, and kindness to her children plant seeds that can grow into an ability to trust in and treasure God, and an ability to understand God better. (Ps 22:8-11, Ps 131:2, Isa 66:13)
  • It is a joy when the barren woman becomes a mother! (Ps 113:9)
  • She has great reason to be glad and rejoice when she has raised a godly, righteous son! (Prov 23:24-25)
  • If her children follow Christ, their love for and devotion to Him will rightly exceed their love for and devotion to her. (Mt 10:35-37, Mt 12:46-50, Mt 19:29)
  • She can be like a mother to others who are not her biological children. (Rom 16:13)
  • Her relationship with her children provides a reference point for understanding healthy, biblical Church life and how Christians are to treat one another. (1 Th 2:7, 1 Tim 5:1-2)
  • A mother's faithful instruction multiplies to bless others as her children grow into mature servants of God. (2 Tim 1:5)

NEGATIVE BIBLICAL DESCRIPTIONS OF MOTHERS:
  • She can deceive her children and encourage them in sin (Gen 27)
  • She can forsake her children. (Ps 27:10)
  • A foolish son brings her sorrow, and may despise her. (Prov 10:1, 15:20, 19:26)
  • She will be shamed if she leaves her child to himself. (Prov 29:15)
Insightful bits here, I think, both in what a mother IS, and what what she is NOT. What her role is as her children grow, and what her role is once they leave home. What a wise mother does, and what the ultimate goals are. God's Word is so very faithful.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Sweet Woodruff in the Garden

Since this is the time to start preparing for bugs in the garden, I'll give you one of my favorite tips for keeping bugs away from my plants . . . sweet woodruff (Galium odoratum). This little perennial has a short habit, growing only to about six inches, and makes a great ground cover. It grows in whorls around a very slender central stem and produces tiny white flowers. I keep it around my

Friday, May 1, 2009

Odds and Ends



Last week I picked up a few things here and there. As I unloaded my car when I got home, I realized that my odds and ends from here and there went quite well together.



I just love the way wicker evokes that feeling of a lazy summer day. I especially love the warm hues that un-painted wicker can offer. I also found this wonderful old cardboard box to hide treasures in. Isn't the pattern lovely?



Look at those sweet little buttons.


What I got:
Wicker picnic basket for a summer afternoon trip to the lake: $3
Round wicker basket to keep my collection of ribbons in: $8
Wicker chair (love the intricate pattern on the seat back): $36
Cute little patterned box for secret treasures: $12


All odds and ends were found at antique stores.

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