Friday, July 31, 2009

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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Another Give Away


Miss Andrea and Miss Kelly over at Ah The Life are sponsoring a give away of some really GOOD bluegrass and gospel music.

The Wintons began singing and playing together at home for fun, learning to harmonize and become strong instrumentally. What began as an interest in bluegrass music grew unexpectedly by the hand of the Lord into a family music ministry. They now perform a mix of gospel and traditional bluegrass music at venues throughout California.

Head on over to Ah The Life to Enter. If you do leave a comment and enter the contest, please tell them that Marci told you. That gives me another entry. :)


Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Quilt Give Away!!!


Over at Marie-Madeline Studio they are giving away this gorgeous quilt. Hop on over and sign up to win!!!

Charlotte???

I am sure most of you have read or heard of Charlotte's Web. Well, the WN children found this web over the pig pen and took a picture. They keep checking it, but there are no letters yet!! :)


Today, the Lord is blessing us with more rain. We are so grateful!!! It is really starting to green back up with the rain we have gotten in the last week.

Here is my milk fridge. There are 10 gallons and a quart of milk in there. I think it is time to have a dairy day. :) This is a blessing as well.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Faith Like Potatoes Again...

I wrote a post about a movie called, "Faith Like Potatoes" awhile back. I would highly encourage you to get a hold of a copy and watch it. God has been teaching us a lot about faith lately. All sorts of situations have come up and we have run across it in our Bible study, etc. We are praying over some really big things right now. We watched a video online on Sunday by a preacher named Terry Virgo. It was on prayer and the power that is in it. I also highly recommend you watching it as well. It was a wonderful reminder to us of just how important prayer is and having faith in your prayers.

We planted potatoes this year. The vines have not done very well at all. One of our friends from church saw them and basically told us not to expect much because they looked so sad. :) I told her that we had faith like potatoes (which will make no sense to you unless you have watched the movie). I told her that we would wait and see what God was doing and trust Him for a potato harvest. Last night, Michael saw where one of the vines had died off totally. He decided to feel down in the soil with his hands to see if there was anything there. He figured we would not remember to dig there when we looked for potatoes. Look what he brought in!!!



This was a shot in the arm to my faith again. God is awsome!!! God is able!!! He is my Father and I want to have great faith in Him. Thank you Lord, for this promise you gave us with the potato.

Monarch George Emerged!!


Another miracle has occurred at our house. The God of all creation has fashioned another butterfly. Yesterday morning, the chrysalis had turned clear. Here are 2 pictures of the folded up butterfly inside the chrysalis.



The next time I looked he was out. I left him in the jar for a short time to let his wings dry to the point that they were stiff. Then I put him out on the wreath on my front door. He stays out there slowly moving his wings and letting them fully dry. Then he flies off when he is ready. There is a very short video of him at the end.




video

Monday, July 27, 2009

Count Your Blessings Monday!!


Here is an opportunity for all of us to give thanks unto the Lord for a blessing in our lives. If you would like to take part great. If not that is OK too. If you would like to share your blessing, just leave it in the comments. If you want to use the picture above and list a blessing on your own site, then leave a URL to your site in the comments. There is no pressure here. I just know that I am incredibly blessed and I would like to share that and give thanks to Him who all blessing come from. This is a way that we can encourage one another. I know that I am often encouraged when someone shares a blessing with me. I think that many times we forget that it is a blessing to be able to breath, to get out of bed, to hold a baby... Share your blessings with us. We can share so many other things.... special gifts, recipes, let's take the time to share how God has blessed us!!

I am so blessed to be His child; To know that He is the Giver of life; To know that He is in control and we can rest in Him.

I am also blessed by my garden this year. He has blessed it mightily. I love see how well everything is growing. We had our first 2 sunflowers bloom. I love their color.

I am getting lots of pickles/cukes. Once I get some garlic cloves and a few more cucumbers, I will do my first batch of pickles.
This is a Golden Glow Rudbeckia. It is blooming like crazy. The blooms are about 6 feet in the air.
We had a nice breeze blowing today. Here is a short video of the garden.

video

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Always something going on at the farm...

Keep praying about Josh & Britt. There has been no real change as of yet.

Monarch George should come out of his chrysalis tonight or tomorrow. Click on the pictures and make them bigger. You can see his wings inside the chrysalis. A MIRACLE!!!!




Here is Star. She seems to really enjoy being the only dog. Belle went to live with Joshua and Brittany.

I just really liked this picture. It is a Gladiola that got blown over in the wind. It is laying across the weeds and mulch. I love all the shapes and greens with that splash of red.

Here are the baby bluebirds. At first there were four of them. Last time I looked there were three. Now, there is just these two.


I love to see all the colors in each sheep's fleece. You can click on any of these and make them bigger as well.


A real "Tails" from the farm photo.
THE END!! :)

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Please Pray

We found out a couple of weeks ago that we were going to be Grandparents. We are all so excited. However, Brittany is showing signs of another possible miscarriage. We are asking you to pray for them through this time.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Homemade Crackers Again.


I made crackers again today. I did it much different than the other ones. They turned out really good!!!

Crackers
4 to 4 1/2 cups flour (I used 3 cups of soft wheat and the rest hard wheat)
1 tsp. baking powder
3/4 cup shortening or butter
1 cup milk
1/2 to 1 tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 375

I combined the baking powder with 4 cups of flour. I mixed in the butter, milk and salt. I had to add the other 1/2 cup of flour to make a dough I could work with. I made a big ball and then divided it into 4 pieces. I wanted to try different times in the oven, etc. Take one dough section and roll it our VERY thin. I did mine on a stone. Then cut into the shapes you want and prick several times with a fork. Sprinkle the tops with salt. The first piece I did at 10 mins. It was OK, but they were just a tad bit soft. When I tried to put some of my cheese spread on one, it broke. The next batch I put in for about 14 mins. That was pretty good, but the outside edges got a bit too done. I put the next batch in for about 12 mins. and they are great. The last batch is in now.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Its Time to Rethink Church Youth Culture!!


Many parents will fork out big bucks to send … students to Christian college, hoping to protect them in their faith. But the fact is, they are already gone. They were lost while still in the fold. They were disengaging while they were still in the pews. They were preparing their exit while they were faithfully attending youth groups and Sunday Schools.
—Ken Ham and Britt Beemer, Already Gone

One of the hallmarks of American culture in the late twentieth century was the revival of the cult of youth. With its roots in Greco-Roman paganism, the worship of youth and the rise of a distinctively family-fragmenting vision of teenage life has dominated our media, our entertainment, our schools, and the very fabric of modern life. But nowhere is the conquest of the cult of youth more evident than in the Church. Frustrated with the absence of real parental involvement in the lives of the next generation, and desperately hoping to reach young people with some Gospel influence, the modern Church in America has drunk deeply from the youth culture phenomenon. This is most obvious in church youth groups, youth-driven worship programs, and even Sunday Schools. Now, after more than a half-century trend, the results are in, and they are not good — our youth are defecting en masse from biblical Christianity.


This trend has long been recognized by researchers — the fact that 61% of youth abandon the church during their 20s — but a common assumption has been that young people lose their faith due to their college experience. Thanks to penetrating new research spearheaded by Ken Ham and Britt Beemer, a startling conclusion has emerged: Youth who regularly attended the most conservative, Bible-believing churches in America during their teen years were, in their hearts, already gone. To quote Ham and Beemer: “They were lost while still in the fold.”

Ham and Beemer have also uncovered hard evidence to support this surprising conclusion: that “Sunday School is actually more likely to be detrimental to the spiritual and moral health of our children.” Those who faithfully attend Sunday School are more likely to leave the church than those who do not — and to doubt the Bible’s reliability.

The evidence is in: The Church’s current model for reaching young people through youth groups and Sunday Schools is a failure. These programs are not only, on the whole, falling short of their aims, but they are actually contributing to the epidemic departure from biblical principles on the part of young people, as well as the massive defection from the Church of Jesus Christ. In short, the Church has proven to be its own worst enemy.


The Problem Addressed:
The ‘Rethink the Youth Culture Toolkit’

Now Vision Forum is pleased to present four ground-breaking tools designed to help you understand and combat this trend — the Rethink the Youth Culture Toolkit. These resources will help parents rethink their training priorities and establish discipleship goals that will help them safeguard their children’s hearts.

Already Gone


Already Gone, by Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis and Brit Breemer of America’s Research Group, offers a thoroughly-documented diagnostic of the views of twenty-somethings who were raised in solid churches, but who are now no longer attending church — and it gives their reasons why. The book demonstrates why America’s churches have lost an entire generation of believers, and details how youth groups and Sunday Schools are contributing to the epidemic, rather than helping to alleviate it. This groundbreaking research is incredibly valuable for those who desire to understand our youth’s abandonment of the faith.


Family Reformation


This new book by Scott Brown demonstrates how John Calvin touched off a family reformation in the sixteenth century through his careful evaluation from the Scriptures of issues such as marriage, manhood, womanhood, courtship, child raising, fertility, and abortion. Like no other Reformer of his time, Calvin provided the exegetical precision that defined the terms for a biblical vision of family life, making him the instigator of a massive restructuring of the most fundamental institution of society. This book offers the main themes of Calvin’s teaching on family life in his own words, and addresses the husband-wife relationship, courtship, modesty, discipleship and discipline of children, care for widows, how parents should respond to prodigals, and much more. Though he was born five hundred years ago, Calvin’s biblical wisdom on family life offers truths that are much-needed in our day.


What He Must Be . . .
It He Wants to Marry My Daughter


Most would agree that we need to raise our boys to be strong men, but what does this look like? What makes a man a man — one worthy to marry another’s daughter and equipped to lead in a perverse generation? In What He Must Be, Voddie Baucham breaks this picture down into ten desirable qualities. Not only should parents of young women seek these ten qualities in a son-in-law, he argues, but parents of young men should strive to cultivate these qualities in their sons. What He Must Be is a helpful resource to prepare sons for marriage.

Father to Son: Manly Conversations
that Can Change Culture


Fathers need to begin speaking to their sons. But the conversation can’t be aimless or trivial. Fathers need to talk in manly and specific ways about the duties of Christian manhood. This six-part DVD series is designed to provide fathers and future fathers with simple examples of manly discussion. These informal, unrehearsed conversations between Geoffrey Botkin and his five sons show how it can be done. Each episode tackles an age-appropriate discipline of manhood. Issues covered include: flirtatious girls, moral purity, and courtship; debt, investments, and business; personal discipline and integrity; pop culture; higher education; and much more.

Save 29%, Plus Receive Three Free
Bonus Products with Your Purchase


Now through July 28, purchase the Rethink the Youth Culture Toolkit for only $75, and receive these three free bonus products with your order:

Thoughts for Young Men by J.C. Ryle (Book)
The Role of Children in the Meeting of the Church (CD)
Rebuilding a Culture of Virtuous Boyhood (CD)



Order the Rethink the Youth Culture Toolkit

Are You A Good Listener?

When you tell someone something, what to you, is the perfect listening person. If you could say exactly the kind of person you would want to tell your account to, what would they be like? It doesn't matter if you are struggling with something, or you have exciting news, or you just want to share your heart. I would want someone who listened first of all. What I mean by that, is they do not interrupt to put in their thoughts or start asking questions. They listen until you are done. I would want them to be someone who knows me and understands my heart. Then I would like them to then ask questions to better understand or to give some sort of feedback as to what I said, so that I know they really heard me. Is this what you would want, or am I a weirdo out here by myself? It can be so frustrating to try and tell someone something when they constantly interrupt. Then instead of really hearing you, they can't wait to tell you how it happened to them and it was worse or better, or what it reminds them of, etc. Or do you ever start to tell someone something and you first ask how they are doing and off they go. An hour later, you have heard every detail of their life, but you never got to share what you wanted to. Listening is a dying art. I heard someone say once that we should listen twice as much as we talk. That is why God gave us 2 ears and only one mouth. :) Again, when I think on these sorts of things, then my thoughts go to.... What do "I" do when someone has something to tell me. Do I listen? Do I interrupt? Do I acknowledge what they said? Do I try to understand their heart... are they just wanting to get something off their heart, or are they just wanting someone to listen, or do they want me to share with them?

I was reading in Proverbs today. Oh, God's Word has so much to say about our words, our tongues, listening, etc. Here are a few I ran across today.

Prov 17:27 He that hath knowledge spareth his words: and a man of understanding is of an excellent spirit. In the NLT the first part of this verse reads, "Prov 17:27 A truly wise person uses few words;"

Many times we think just the opposite. We should hear more from the wise. Yet it says that a TRULY wise person uses few words. Think about that. When they speak it will be a jewel, because they don't waste words.

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Prov 18:2 A fool hath no delight in understanding, but that his heart may discover itself. Again, in the NLT it says, "Fools have no interest in understanding; they only want to air their own opinions."

Ouch! How many times do we want to be sure that everyone knows what we think. From the verse above, the wise are not worried about that.

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Prov 18:13 He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.

We are so quick to spout our wisdom, that we often give advice before we even hear the facts. How sad is that. What does that say? "I" am more important than the other person.

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Prov 10:19 In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.

Again, if I am wise my words will be few.

I want to be a good listener. I want to be a woman of few words. I am praying and asking God to help me with this. Any thoughts?


Wednesday, July 22, 2009

New Movie Coming Out!!

This helps explain why we do what we do on this farm.

Here it comes.....

It seems like you wait forever for things to ripen and grow in the garden. Then once it starts... look out!!! :) Well, I went out to chase a chicken out of the garden and brought this back in with me. It is our first zucchini, yellow squash and cucumbers. :)


I also went out and checked on my bluebird babies. You can see the beginning of blue in their feathers.


The Wonderful Neighbor children came over today to help me. Here are some of the blackberries they picked. They are just starting and some of these are HUGE!!


The younger WN boys picked red clover flowers for me. They did a great job and I have 3 trays full on the dehydrator.

These flowers are all out of our yard.

The older WN children also picked some jewelweed for me. I am going to make some tincture and some oil from it.

Our lettuce still has not gotten bitter. I picked another big bunch to put in the fridge. Tonight we are having a garden meal. We will have lettuce with cucumbers from our garden, zucchini and yellow squash and some broccoli from the WN's garden that they shared with me. YUM!!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Life On The Farm...

Yesterday went by in a blur. :) It was dairy day here on the farm. I keep thinking about what I am going to do when the other cow comes into milk. :) I am going to run out of jars. We will probably get at least one more calf to keep with hers. We are feeding the pigs some milk. We will probably increase that as they grow. That will help use up some milk.

I made some sweet cheese out of 1.5 gallons of milk. I used lemon juice instead of vinegar as my acid. I want to make a raspberry cheese danish. The last one was good, but the cheese was not as good as it could have been. I am going to try this cheese and see what it tastes like. I made jalapeno cheese using 5 gallons of milk. It is so good and so versatile. It is a great snack, especially on homemade crackers. It is great on top of salads, or spread on a sandwich as a condiment. It freezes well too. I also made butter. I had some little 1/2 cup canning jars and I bought another dozen. I am freezing my butter in those. I really don't like using the plastic wrap. I would like to get some more jars, but want to find them a bit cheaper.

I made bread yesterday. I made Michael's sandwich yesterday morning on the last of the bread. It was really only enough for one slice, but I managed to cut it in two. :)

I did 3 loads of laundry.They were not hung on the line though. It looked like it was going to rain, but we just got some sprinkles. We really need rain and are praying for it. This is the third dry year in a row. the pastures are not looking good and if we don't get some soon, then we will need to start feeding hay.

Today, I hope to make mozzarella, kombucha and some crackers. I also want to make some soap this week, although that is not happening today.


We finished our Bible study, "The Walk of Repentance." We all got so much out of it, we are doing another one by Steve Gallagher of Pure Life Ministries. This one is called "A Lamp Unto My Feet." It is a 12 week study about the Word of God using Psalm 119. We are all looking forward to it.

Last night the Wonderful Neighbors milked for us. After they took the cow back out to the pasture, the WN girl came in and she had brought me a really tiny George. Here is a picture of George in the palm of her hand with a dime. He is now in a jar on my counter. He will be hard to find among the leaves, until he grows a bit.

Here is the empty chrysalis from Fennel George.
The WN girl and boys were as fascinated with it as I was. :) I love it when I get to be a kid too!!

What is God doing in your life today, this week, this month? Is there something new and fresh that He is showing you, teaching you or working in you? We should always have an answer for that. I do not always have an answer I am ashamed to say. Times are getting tough in this country and around the world. People are losing their jobs, companies are folding, and people are becoming homeless. I read an article that said many familys are living in campgrounds right now, because they lost their home. We need each other as brothers and sisters in the Lord. We need to lay aside our differences and come together and share what we agree on. We all need encouragement, love and to be needed by others.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Count Your Blessings Monday!!


Here is an opportunity for all of us to give thanks unto the Lord for a blessing in our lives. If you would like to take part great. If not that is OK too. If you would like to share your blessing, just leave it in the comments. If you want to use the picture above and list a blessing on your own site, then leave a URL to your site in the comments. There is no pressure here. I just know that I am incredibly blessed and I would like to share that and give thanks to Him who all blessing come from. This is a way that we can encourage one another. I know that I am often encouraged when someone shares a blessing with me. I think that many times we forget that it is a blessing to be able to breath, to get out of bed, to hold a baby... Share your blessings with us. We can share so many other things.... special gifts, recipes, let's take the time to share how God has blessed us!!

Today, I am going to count two blessings. First of all it is friends who share their children. :) I have gotten some good baby time in this weekend. The WN baby (or Little Neighbor as my husband has dubbed her) has been in a happy happy mood lately. I got to hold her several times this weekend. Plus her siblings are all a blessing to us.


In this first picture, you see WN boy #3 being tortured by Michael. Doesn't he look like he is in agony?? What I can't figure out is why he keeps coming back for more.

Here is WN boy #1 holding the Little Neighbor. She was just a grinnin'!!!

Look at that face. What a doll baby!!!

Here is Neighbor with Little Neighbor. They are outside in the green bean patch. The little one kept watching the dog and would not look at the camera.
We took the Little Neighbor over to see the chicks. Looks like she wants to try out a small chicken dinner. :)

The other blessing is butterflies. I keep several caterpillars every year and let them turn into a butterfly. It is such a clear reminder to me of the work Christ does in us. That big old stripey worm somehow gets into this little tiny chrysalis. Inside God is weaving and creating a beautiful butterfly. He is still working on me. One day, I too will come forth as a thing of beauty.
This is Fennel George. He came out of his chrysalis on Sunday morning. I also have a Monarch George in a chrysalis.

I put him out on my wreath to let his wings dry. Isn't he beautiful??



Thank you Lord for persevering with me. Thank you for the work you are doing in my life. May I come out as a shining jewel for Your kingdom.