Tuesday, August 23, 2016

A Woman's Influence

Man and Woman Costume 1806

Women have a lot of power.
God gave us the ability to influence.
What a honor and what a responsibility.
Women have always helped keep things in check.
They've always held the standard a little high.
It used to be that men would clean their language up when a lady walked in.
The standard of behavior went up when ladies and children were present.
Women were respected.
What's happened?
When did it change?
It changed when we changed.
When as women we stopped respecting the position God gave us and lowered our standards.
Men no longer care how they talk around a woman because she no longer cares about how she talks.
This seems like a small thing, like it really couldn't matter that much but it does.
Women are light bearers, we bring a goodness into the world that is uniquely feminine.
Men in the past have respected that and were created to defend it but we've blown out our lights and have left the men with nothing to defend and no reason to be more.
Be the kind of woman that brings light and goodness where ever she goes, don't sell yourself out, you are worth more, our men and our children deserve more.
Don't be petty, don't be a drama queen, don't gossip and back stab.
Let's grow up and be women, the world is in dire need of grown, mature women who know how to act.

~Kelly Gray

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Monday, August 22, 2016

Saturated Fats are Good for You

Butter

"The demonized saturated fats--which Americans are trying to avoid---are not the cause of our modern diseases. In fact, they play many important roles in the body chemistry:
  • Saturated fatty acids constitute at least 50% of the cell membranes, giving them necessary stiffness and integrity so they can function properly.
  • They play a vital role in the health of our bones. For calcium to be effectively incorporated into the skeletal structure, at least 50% of the dietary fats should be saturated. They lower Lp(a), a substance in the blood that indicates proneness to heart disease. 
  • They protect the liver from alcohol and other toxins, such as Tylenol.
  • They enhance the immune system.
  • They are needed for the proper utilization of essential fatty acids. Elongated omega-3 fatty acids are better retained in the tissues when the diet is rich in saturated fats.
  • Saturated 18-carbon stearic acid and 16-carbon palmitic acid are the preferred foods for the heart, which is why the fat around the heart muscle is highly saturated. The heart draws on this reserve of fat in times of stress.
  • Short- and medium-chain saturated fatty acids have important antimicrobial properties. They protect us against harmful microorganisms in the digestive tract."
~Nourishing Traditions

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Sunday, August 21, 2016

Lovely Days at Home

Studying Children  

I so much enjoy being at home.  With some of my children older, there seem to be more days that we are away from home for various reason.  I do not have them in a bunch of extracurricular activities, but still, there is always so much going on with shopping, Bible studies, appointments, and other things.  Being away so much doesn't leave enough time for house keeping, and I miss it so--the quiet, peaceful days at home with my children.

We have started our new school year, and are enjoying our new curriculum, which I will have to share with you about some time.  One day a week, we have a day that is devoted to art lessons, piano lessons (which I teach), and character studies.  The children also catch up on any school work they got behind in and make any corrections to their work that they still need to make.  Today we had such a day, and were quickly reminded how badly I need to get the piano tuned!  Hopefully and prayerfully soon.  One of my daughters is learning violin, but she is still interested in piano too, for which I am grateful.  Soon, I will need to get some higher level books for her to learn from.  I am praying I will be able to do that.

I think it is important that my children get to enjoy art--making things by hand.  This year, one of my children is going to be studying watercolor, one will be studying drawing horses, one will have her own drawing course, two others will be using the same art book for children, and another will have her own art lessons for her age to go through.  (The littlest one also has a book of art to enjoy).  Child of Truth's art book included projects that are a bit out of the ordinary, and some that are ordinary for art.  For instance, today, we made butter.  We put some good quality cream in a mason jar and shook it up for about twenty minutes until a nice ball of butter formed.  Most of the other children took turns shaking the jar too.  It was lots of fun and our first time making butter.

What a sweet blessing it is to be home with your children, loving and learning together ♥

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Saturday, August 20, 2016

We Must Pray

Girl Praying

"Bibles read without prayer; sermons heard without prayer; marriages contracted without prayer; journeys undertaken without prayer; residences chosen without prayer; friendships formed without prayer; the daily act of prayer itself hurried over, or gone through without heart: these are the kind of downward steps by which many a Christian descends to a condition of spiritual palsy, or reaches the point where God allows them to have a tremendous fall."
--J.C. Ryle

How we must not neglect to pray.  How can we neglect to pray and seek our Heavenly Father's counsel?  We need Him for all of life.  We need to seek His will in whatever we do.  Let us not forget to pray.


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Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Errors in the USDA Food Pyramid

Passion for Cooking I


"Unfortunately, several dangerous errors are built into the edifice of the USDA Food Pyramid. First, the new guidelines imply that everyone can eat the same foods in the same proportions and be healthy. According the recommendations, grains should be the basis of our diet; but many people do very poorly on grains. Others have a low tolerance for dairy products. These intolerances are due to a number of factors, including ethnic background and genetic inheritance. Secondly the guidelines perpetuate the myth that fats, carbohydrates and proteins have equal nutritional properties no matter how much or how little they are processed. The experts make no distinction between whole grains & refined, between foods grown organically and those grown with pesticides and commercial fertilizers, between unprocessed dairy products from pasture-fed cows and pasteurized dairy products from confined animals raised on processed feed, between fresh and rancid fats, between traditional fresh fruits and vegetables and those that have been irradiated or genetically altered, between range-fed meats and those from animals raised in crowded pens; between natural and battery-produced eggs; in short, between the traditional foods that nourished our ancestors and newfangled products now dominating the modern marketplace."

~Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions

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Sunday, August 14, 2016

On Motherhood and Profanity by Elizabeth Elliott

Mother and Children Outing

 "OK now, which one of you clowns put that bag of M 'n' Ms in the grocery cart?" The mother looks harried.

Two boys, maybe five and seven, eye each other and race away toward the gumball machine near the supermarket door. There is an infant strapped to a plastic board on top of the groceries, and a two year old occupying the built-in child seat in the cart. The mother picks up the M 'n' M candy bag and starts toward the aisle to return it. The two year old screams and she relents, throws the bag in with the rest of her purchases, patiently waits her turn at the check-out, fishes five ten-dollar bills from her purse, receives her small change, and pushing the cart with the babies in it, herds the two boys through the rain to the station wagon in the parking lot.

I go with her in my mind's eye. Jump out in the rain. Open the garage door. Drive in. Close door. Babies, boys, bags into the house in how many trips? Phone rings. Answer phone, change baby, wipe muddy tracks from kitchen floor. Feed baby, put groceries away, hide M 'n' Ms, start peeling vegetables, take clothes out of dryer, stop fight between two older children, feed two year old, answer phone again, fold clothes, change baby, get boys to:
1) hang up coats,
2) stop teasing two year old,
3) set table.
Light oven, put baby to bed, stop fight, mop up two year old, put chicken in oven, answer phone, put away clothes, finish peeling vegetables, look peaceful and radiant--husband will be home soon.

I see this implacable succession of exigencies in my mind's eye. They come with being a mother. I also see the dreams she dreams sometimes--write a novel, agents call, reviews come in. TV interviews, autograph parties, promotional traveling, a movie contract--preposterous dreams. Try something a little more realistic. Cool modern office, beautiful clothes, make-up and hairdo that stay done all day. A secretarial job perhaps, nothing spectacular, but it's work that actually produces something that doesn't have to be done over at once. It's work that ends at five o'clock. It means something. 



Mother Love
 

I know how it is. I have a mother. I am a mother. I've produced a mother (my daughter, Valerie, has a two year old and expects another child soon). I watched my own mother cope valiantly and efficiently with a brood of six. ("If one child takes all your time," she used to say, "six can't take any more.") We were--we still are--her life. I understand that. Of all the gifts of my life surely those of being somebody's wife and somebody's mother are among the greatest.

But I watch my daughter and other mothers of her generation and I see they have some strikes against them that we didn't have. They have been told insistently and quite persuasively that motherhood is a drag, that tradition is nonsense, that what people have always regarded as "women's work" is meaningless, that "roles" (a word we never bothered much about until a decade or so ago) are changing, that femininity is a mere matter of social conditioning, that it's time to innovate. If the first-grade readers show a picture of a woman driving a hook-and-ladder and a man doing a nurse's job, see what happens to the conditioning. Abolish the stereotypes and we can abolish the myths of masculinity and femininity.

I hear this sort of claptrap, and young mothers often come to me troubled because they can't answer the arguments logically or theologically. They feel, deep in their bones, that there is something terribly twisted about the whole thing but they can't put their finger on what it is. 


I think I know what it is. Profanity. Not swearing. I'm not talking about breaking the Third Commandment. I'm talking about treating as meaningless that which is freighted with meaning. Treating as common that which is hallowed. Regarding as a mere triviality what is really a divine design. Profanity is failure to see the inner mystery. 


Mother and Child, 1900

When women--sometimes well-meaning, earnest, truth seeking ones say "Get out of the house and do something creative, find something meaningful, something with more direct access to reality," it is a dead giveaway that they have missed the deepest definition of creation, of meaning, of reality. And when you start seeing the world as opaque, that is, as an end in itself instead of as transparent, when you ignore the Other World where this one ultimately finds its meaning, of course housekeeping (and any other kind of work if you do it long enough) becomes tedious and empty. 


But what have buying groceries, changing diapers and peeling vegetables got to do with creativity? Aren't those the very things that keep us from it? Isn't it that kind of drudgery that keeps us in bondage? It's insipid and confining, it's what one conspicuous feminist called "a life of idiotic ritual, full of forebodings and failure." To her I would answer ritual, yes. Idiotic, no, not to the Christian--for although we do the same things anybody else does, and we do them over and over in the same way, the ordinary transactions of everyday life are the very means of transfiguration. It is the common stuff of this world which, because of the Word's having been "made flesh," is shot through with meaning, with charity, with the glory of God.

But this is what we so easily forget. Men as well as women have listened to those quasi-rational claims, have failed to see the fatal fallacy, and have capitulated. Words like personhood, liberation, fulfillment and equality have had a convincing ring and we have not questioned their popular definitions or turned on them the searchlight of Scripture or even of our common sense. We have meekly agreed that the kitchen sink is an obstacle instead of an altar, and we have obediently carried on our shoulders the chips these reductionists have told us to carry. 


Illustration,
 

This is what I mean by profanity. We have forgotten the mystery, the dimension of glory. It was Mary herself who showed it to us so plainly. By the offering up of her physical body to become the God-bearer, she transfigured for all mothers, for all time, the meaning of motherhood. She cradled, fed and bathed her baby--who was very God of very God--so that when we cradle, feed and bathe ours we may see beyond that simple task to the God who in love and humility "dwelt among us and we beheld his glory."

Those who focus only on the drabness of the supermarket, or on the onions or the diapers themselves, haven't an inkling of the mystery that is at stake here, the mystery revealed in the birth of that Baby and consummated on the Cross: my life for yours.

The routines of housework and of mothering may be seen as a kind of death, and it is appropriate that they should be, for they offer the chance, day after day, to lay down one's life for others. Then they are no longer routines. By being done with love and offered up to God with praise, they are thereby hallowed as the vessels of the tabernacle were hallowed--not because they were different from other vessels in quality or function, but because they were offered to God. A mother's part in sustaining the life of her children and making it pleasant and comfortable is no triviality. It calls for self-sacrifice and humility, but it is the route, as was the humiliation of Jesus, to glory. 


Helping Mother, 1892
 

To modern mothers I would say "Let Christ himself be your example as to what your attitude should be. For he, who had always been God by nature, did not cling to his prerogatives as God's equal, but stripped himself of all privilege by consenting to be a slave by nature and being born as a mortal man. And, having become man, he humbled himself by living a life of utter obedience, even to the extent of dying, and the death he died was the death of a common criminal. That is why God has now lifted him so high. . ." (Phil. 2:5-11 Phillips).

It is a spiritual principle as far removed from what the world tells us as heaven is removed from hell: If you are willing to lose your life, you'll find it. It is the principle expressed by John Keble in 1822:


If on our daily course our mind
Be set to hallow all we find,
New treasures still, of countless price,
God will provide for sacrifice



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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Teach Your Children to Pray

Praying Child and Dog, 1941

 It was a few years ago that I read J. C. Ryle's book, Duties of Parents.  In it, J. C. Ryle admonished parents to teach their children to pray.  Please join me at Raising Homemakers today for the rest of my post!

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Great Training for Homemakers

How have you all been?  I'm sorry for my absence.  We have been so terribly busy and have had so much going on.  That's just the way it is sometimes, I guess.  I am so thankful when things quiet down more, and we can have relaxing time at home.  Things can get out of control pretty quickly when we are not home to take care of our homes!

Now, I wanted to share something with you!

Have you ever wanted to be taken along by a more experienced woman (or women) who are skilled at homemaking and have a lot of experience?  I know I have.  I did not receive that training when I was younger and so I've had to learn things on my own.  That is definitely not the easy way!  But unfortunately, it seems to be the case with many women in our times.

Thankfully we have help in books or even online videos to help us learn a new skill.  Sometimes it is hard and frustrating to weed through what's available to find what is useful.  That's why I wanted to share with you a very exciting new resource called My Homemaking Mentor.


My Homemaking Mentor is a brand new online training academy for Christian Homemakers.  Signing up will give you access to 10 full courses, 8 instructors, and more than 50 video based lessons all about homemaking.  I am so excited for this and believe it will be a huge help to so many of us!  You really must hurry and sign up now though, because the price is about to go up after today (I am so sorry for not getting this out to you sooner).   And what's best, is your one-time purchase gives you lifetime access!  Go ahead and check out the link and see what the excitement is about.  I pray this blesses you so much!

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-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Disclosure: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note, I only endorse products that are in alignment with Blessed Homemaking's ideals and I believe would be of value to my readers. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Memory Making in the Summer

Boys Sitting on Porch Holding Sparklers, with US Flag in Back, During Independence Day Celebration

Our country's Independence Day will soon be here, so how will you celebrate with your family?  We hope to go to a couple of parades this coming week, and we also plan to watch some fireworks displays that we can see from our neighborhood.  We have watched the fireworks like this for many years!  No driving and no paying for entertainment--my favorite!

Besides the fun though, I also want my children to understand what this holiday is about. Please join me at Raising Homemakers today to see how we can make this holiday truly meaningful for our families!

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-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Disclosure: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note, I only endorse products that are in alignment with Blessed Homemaking's ideals and I believe would be of value to my readers. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Monday, June 27, 2016

How to Care of Your Home and Family Naturally

 
It's been many years since I started taking care of my family and home in a natural way.  I first became interested in "being my family's doctor" when the doctors would have no answers when I took my children in for problems.  I began researching ways to help my children myself.  So, I changed our meals to very natural ones, and eventually I began learning about herbs and then essential oils.  Having this knowledge has been immensely helpful!  I am glad that the Lord has provided all natural medicine for our families.  (Of course, this is not to say that we will never need a doctor, but there are a lot of things we can do ourselves!)

Also, when I became more aware of the harmful chemicals in our cleaning and personal care products, I started replacing our store-bought items with homemade ones.  Essential oils are great for this!

But when it comes to essential oils and herbs, where do you get the information?  Or, more specifically, what information is right?  Where do you start?  It can be really overwhelming, I know.  There is so much information out there that it can be hard to navigate.  Also with essential oils, there are people spreading incomplete, or even false information because they don't have the proper training.  It's important to know how to use essential oils safely.

All of this is why I want to make sure you know about a great source of information to educate yourself about herbs and essential oils.  It is the The Herbs & Essential Oils Super Bundle 2016, and the last day to get it is today!  I'm sorry that I was unable to tell you about this sooner, but please get it before the end of the day if you have any interest in this at all!

Here is a list of what is  included, and their values (the bundle costs way less than this!):
  • 101 Essential Oil Blends for Topical & Aromatic Use by Rachel Zupke of Mason Jar Values ($7.99)
  • 5 Multi-Use Herbs (And What to Do with Them) by Sarah Josey of Golden Poppy Herbal Apothecary & Clinic ($17.00)
  • Best Herbs & Essential Oils For Labor & Delivery-Audio Class & Transcript by Jenni Wilson of Natural Oil Mom ($19.95)
  • Cold & Flu Season: Are You Ready? by Carol Little   ($9.99)
  • Common Sense Home Remedies Book #1 – Head, Throat & Chest by Laurie Neverman of Common Sense Home ($2.99)
  • Common Sense Home Remedies Book #1 – Skin Troubles by Laurie Neverman of Common Sense Home ($2.99)
  • Common Sense Home Remedies Book #1 – Tummy Troubles by Laurie Neverman of Common Sense Home ($2.99)
  • DIY Lavender Creations by Stacy Karen of A Delightful Home ($5.99)
  • Essential Oils Planner by Amy Bayliss of AmyBayliss.com ($5.95)
  • Essential Oils: Separating Truth from Myth by Kristen Smith of Smithspirations ($9.95)
  • Essential Oils: The Herbalist’s Toolkit by Amber Meyers of Herbal Academy of New England ($4.99)
  • Handbook of Home Remedies by Wellness Mama ($24.00)
  • Herbs & Oils: Beyond the Basics by Jessie Hawkins of Vintage Remedies ($197.00)
  • Homegrown Healing, from Seed to Apothecary by Chris Dalziel of Joybilee Farm ($9.97)
  • How to Create Healing Herbal Baths by Kami McBride of Living Awareness ($19.99)
  • Mama and Baby Herbal Wisdom by Kate Tietje of Modern Alternative Mama ($7.95)
  • Safe EO Labels – Set A by Lea Harris of Using EOs Safely ($19.99)
  • The Essential Oils Course by Edie Wadsworth of Living Life in Grace ($39.00)
  • Using Essential Oils Safely & Effectively by Natalie Vickery of The Family Herbalist ($12.50)
  • Wholistic Vitality: Healing Foods for the Whole Family by Dr. Karen Lee of DrKarenSLee.com ($9.99)
Go here to learn more and get your bundle:



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-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Disclosure: In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog. Please note, I only endorse products that are in alignment with Blessed Homemaking's ideals and I believe would be of value to my readers. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------