Christmas Spirit!

Last weekend we all stayed home all day on Sunday (after our gathering of course) and decorated for Christmas! We had a lot of fun and got a lot done! Made cookies, drank egg nog, hot chocolate, made ginger bread houses with the kids. We went out and found and cut our tree, brought it home, trimmed and decorated it. We ended the day putting lights up on the house! We were all very tired at the end of the day but we had our fill of fun! The kids loved it. I’ll write more about our day later. I mostly wanted to get these pictures up! Bringing home the tree!

Eating the cookies

Our big tree!

Hiding under the tree!

How shall we decorate it?

A little cookie monster

Thought you might enjoy these. Will post our ginger bread house adventure soon!

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Awesome skin oil!

My sister posts food recipes and I post belly oil! ūüôā This is a recipe another midwife gave me. I use it on my skin when I’m pregnant. Not sure what to use, or what really works? Do I use cocoa butter cream? Lotion? Oh look, this one¬†guarantees¬†no stretch marks! Well, I’ve tried a lot of them and I like this the best! It’s not sticky, doesn’t stain, moisturizes your skin and doesn’t stink. Oh, but I don’t¬†guarantee that you won’t get stretch marks!! No oil can do that, stretch marks are hereditary so if your mom got them, you probably will; sorry. They are your motherhood battle scars. You Can improve your skin’s health if you eat¬†nutritious food, take vitamins, and use belly oil!

Vit E and carrier oil

A carrier oil (can use almond oil, grapeseed oil or olive oil)

2 Tbsp Wheat germ oil

1 tsp Vitamin E oil

1 tsp Apple cider vinegar

Small 2 oz glass bottle, measuring spoons & a small funnel (I use an empty liquid herb bottle)

Put Wheat germ oil, Vit E oil and Apple cider vinegar  (using the funnel) into the glass bottle. Then fill the rest of the way with your carrier oil and shake.

* I make this in small 2 oz amounts and it lasts me about 3 weeks. I keep it on my shower shelf and just put it on (while still wet) under the warm water, get out and towel dry off. Your skin will be moist but not sticky.

* Refrigerate  your remaining Wheat germ oil & Apple cider vinegar. Otherwise they will go bad within a month.

*Important to use a glass bottle! Will help your oil keep longer.

The carrier oil I’m using right now (the one in the picture with the belly on the front) is a mixture of several different oils. I bought it before I got this recipe and am trying to use it up. I’ll probably switch to almond oil when I run out.

Hind’s feet

This is Cedar- Jerusha's youngest

I share a home with the five in our family, a young mom (Jerusha) and her three kids, another couple (Dave & Shalom), and my younger (20yr old) sister. Every evening in our household Dave, or my husband David bring something special to what we call “Devotion time”. The men get home from work and we gather in the living room for about 20 minutes before we all go to the dinner table. Sometimes David just plays the guitar and we sing and the kids dance. Sometimes we go for a walk around the ‘Village Loop’ together. Some nights it’s a story, some nights we just pray. Well, the past few weeks David has been reading to us out of the book ‘Hind’s feet on high places’ by Hannah Hanard. It is a neat¬†allegory of our journey in following Christ and the lessons we learn thru life. The kids really like it. The other night when we read it this jumped out at me…

“I think, my Lord, you purposely allow us to be brought into contact with the bad and evil things that you want changed. Perhaps that is the very reason why we are here in this world, where sin and sorrow and evil abound, so that we may let you teach us so to react to them, that out of them we can create lovely qualities to live forever. That is the only really satisfactory way of dealing with evil, not simply binding it so that it cannot work harm, but whenever possible overcoming it with good.”

The kids in our house- summer 2008

This mostly speaks for itself. It’s not your standard American way of thinking- Why should bad and evil things happen to us or around us? Get away from bad and evil. Why does sin happen? Or why must we walk hand in hand with sorrow at some points in our life? ¬†I want to learn this lesson- how to overcome them with good, how to react to them in such a way as to create lovely qualities. I have seen this happen in people I know. It is amazing to see the whole picture as God reveals His plan (and we only see dimly!) At the start, when there are troubles all around us we can see so little of what is really happening! Probably how the grass blades look to the ants, or how grownups look to toddlers. ūüôā

Knowing the heart of God

Ok, I know it looks like I get a lot of time to read!! Sadly, I don’t. ūüė¶ ¬†The only reason I can post right now is the ‘Redhead’ is napping, the other two are doing homework and I don’t have dinner cook tonight and it’s not my laundry day! (I’ll explain our household schedule another time:)) The past 2 months I have worked my way through one Watchman Nee book and 4 chapters of this book- “Knowing the heart of God” by George McDonald. This book takes concentration and being awake to read (neither of which I’m good at when I finally get to sit down and read) and even then, I still have to reread paragraphs all the time. At the most, I might get through half a chapter at a time! Do I know the heart of God yet? Now I can answer ‘yes’! I know His heart for me at this very moment- obedience to Him right now! Anyway, I wanted to share a small glance into that book (Knowing the heart of God) with you… one of my favorite parts so far.

“The care of the disciples was care for the day, not for tomorrow. Today is this very moment we are in. Any and every point in the future is God’s care. If a man forget a thing, God will see to that. Man is not lord of his memory or his intellect. But the man is lord of his will, his action. And he is verily to blame when, remembering a duty, he does not do it, but puts it off, and so forgets it. Work done is of more consequence for the future than all the foresight and planning of an archangel. The true- that is the obedient- man cannot help seeing the truth, for it is the very business of his being- the natural concern, the correlate of his soul.”

“We can never come to know Jesus as he is by believing any theory about him. It is faith in the man- Christ himself, who did and is doing everything for us. What is faith in Him? The leaving of your way, your objects, your self, and the taking of his and him; the leaving of your trust in men, in money, in opinion, in character, in religious doctrines and opinions, and then doing as Christ tells you- Obedience.”— George McDonald

This faith in Him, this leaving of our own way and thoughts is what we as disciples are called to do daily. Here in Rose Creek Village where I live I see this faith walked out among real, live people- people who have problems, people who are normal. God strengthens our faith in Him daily, and every week we get a chance to once again- not trust in money, leave our opinions, leave behind our attempts to preserve how we appear and so much more and follow Him. This book is challenging me to obey what God asks me every day, every moment, in the moment.

Week 31

Pregnancy!!! I forgot! How is it possible to forget all the little discomforts of pregnancy?! I have 3 boys and my youngest is almost 3 &1/2 years old. But, it happened to me… I forgot. This kid (I don’t know what it is… just hope it’s not a cat!) is in my ribs, yet riding on my legs and I still have 9 weeks to go! It’s hard to walk, it’s hard to breathe, it’s hard to eat… alright, I’m not trying to complain, I just forgot. However, the one thing I remembered is just as much fun as I remember- feeling a little being move, kick and swim around inside of me! I love to imagine what he/she will look like. It’s either a girl or it’s a boy with dark hair. ūüôā My three boys have 3 different colored hair- Brown, Blond and Red. ūüôā We want a girl but we love our boys and I can’t ever decide which one I would change out for a girl if I could! The boys are excited! We made a paper chain counting down the weeks till the baby is here and my youngest- Tristan keeps talking about ‘when the chain is gone and Sissy comes out and I can hold it and play swords with her!’ Poor guy if it’s a boy- Tristan will be calling him ‘Sissy’. He insists that it is a girl; he ‘already has 2 brothers’, he says. Well, right now I’m just trying to enjoy what there is to enjoy and not focus too much on how much longer I have to go or think about the¬†possibility¬†of how much bigger I will get! ūüôā And no, it’s not twins! I had an early ultrasound.

The call

First of all, it will be a miracle if I get to blog once a month!! I’ve had this blog set up for a month now and am just now getting my first post up! I am not a computer person (yet) and even with sitting here for 5 minutes I’ve had about 7¬†interruptions between showering boys and helping with homework! Anyway,¬†I’ve been reading Amy Carmichael’s book ‘ Things as they are: Mission work in Southern India’ ¬†A couple weeks ago I came across a chapter that made my heart pound. It was a dream/vision that Amy had… (I’ll try to shorten it a little)

‘I stood on a grassy bank and at my feet a precipice broke sheer down to infinite space. I looked but saw no bottom: unfathomable depths that made me dizzy. Then I saw forms of people moving single file along the grass. They were headed for the edge. A women with a baby in her arms and another child holding onto her.. She was on the verge. Then I saw that she was blind! She lifted her foot for the next step… it trod air. She went over and the children with her. Oh, the cry as they went over! Then I saw streams of people flowing from all directions. All were blind; all made straight for the edge. There were shrieks as they suddenly knew themselves falling, and a tossing up of helpless arms, catching, clutching at empty air. But some went over quietly, and fell without a sound. Then I wondered with agony why no one stopped them at the edge. Then I saw that along the ¬†edge there were sentries set at intervals. But the intervals were far too great; there were wide, unguarded gaps between. Over these gaps the people fell in their blindness, quite unwarned. And the green grass seemed like blood-red to me, and the gulf yawned like the mouth of hell. Then, I saw like a picture of peace, a group of people under some trees with their backs towards the gulf. They were making daisy chains. Sometimes when a shriek cut thru the air it disturbed them and they thought it quite vulgar. If one of their people tried to go and do something to help the others would pull him down. ‘Why should you get so excited about it? You must wait for a¬†definite call to go! You haven’t finished your daisy chain yet. It would be really selfish to leave us to finish the work alone.’ ¬†There was another group whose great desire was to get ¬†more sentries out but they found that very few wanted to go. ¬†Once a girl (sentry) stood alone in her place, waving the people back; but her relations called, and reminded her that furlough was due. And being tired and needing a change, she had to go and rest awhile; but no one was sent to guard her gap, and over and over the people fell, like a waterfall of souls. The girl longed to be back in her place and thought she heard a little one cry out and she wanted to go; at which people reproved her, reminding her that no one is necessary anywhere. And then they sang a hymn.

What does it matter, after all? It has gone on for years; it will go on for years. Why make such a fuss about it?

God forgive us! God arouse us! Shame us out of our callousness! Shame us out of our sin!- Amy C.

‘Our prayers for the evangelisation of the world are but a bitter irony so long as we only give of our superfluity, and draw back before the sacrifice of ourselves’. M Francois Coillard, Africa

What is ‘The Call’ ? How do we know He has asked us to be one of those He sends out? ¬†I don’t have all the answers but I do know that this past year my heart has been burdened more and more to share what Christ has given me with others. The Call? I think all those who are His disciples have been called. What have you been called to? To go?, To give, To send??? We must pursue Him with all of our heart and He will guide our steps.

A couple weeks ago I was¬†privileged ¬†to go (with a few other people) to the ‘Global Missions Health Conference’ ¬†in Louisville, Ky. It was refreshing, ¬†and encouraging to see so many people in one place that are¬†sincerely trying to lay down their lives and follow God. It really encouraged me personally to give my all, whether I’m here at home or I go out. And truthfully, we go out every day… It’s not ¬†always the Big- expeditions (the mundane happens then too:)) , it’s every week at the grocery store, or the person you look in the eyes as you pass them, the people I eat breakfast with, and the old lady you open the door for. There are¬†opportunities God puts in front of me every day. ¬†God arouse me, open my eyes!