January 29, 2016

First Month of the Year...

looking out my window… it's winter. There is semi faint green grass and birds a million, singing from the tree tops. Knitting projects in baskets, begging to be finished before the use of wool has to wait another season. Sap buckets are hung, the first round collected... seed catalogs piled high with anticipation, the days growing longer and mornings are not so bitter.

of my thanksgiving... thank you, to the cashier whose soft voice was louder than my moment of worry. When in your praise, you reminded me to rejoice in the day, you were gifted with. I left the store with a smile and a reminder of who really is King. Thank you, Father for the bountiful blessing of bananas, a whole case for ten dollars! Thank you, for the two fryers on sale and the lead on forty nine cent avocados. For the package in the mail, from a pen pal... a dear friend whom I hope to meet face to face one day... whose love and encouraging words were as fragrant as the home made soap she gifted. 

~ amish school yard ~

reflecting on... the lessons I am learning from my Amish neighbors. The other day my daughter and I went to purchase eggs, and in the yard of the home in which we visited where two young boys stuffing what looked like a bag of some sort. I could not resist asking about it... after I purchased the eggs, I asked the older sister “might I ask, what are the children stuffing in the yard?”

I was thinking, feather pillows for their beds or something...

The reply: “Casket pillows.”

Apparently, they run the cotton through a gas powered motor and fan of some sort and it shoots the cotton, fluffier than when it went in, into the heavy grey fabric. To which they place in the bottom of the casket. I didn't know what to say to that, except “oh.”

But I have been thinking about that all week. Life and Death, a reality these children see every day from the time they enter into this world to the time they leave. These children are not obsessed with death, nor do they seem to take it lightly. I see them laughing, running and about playing with joy and mischief in their eyes. But they appear to take life with an element of sobriety that much of our society seems to have forgotten, and I am inclined to believe that it has been detrimental to us all.

from the pages... 

“For love will starve if its not fed, and true hearts pray for daily bread.” 
~ J.R. Miller, The Family ~

ebb and flow of home... limiting the amount of so called 'news' in the world. This may be a odd subject to share about in the ebb and flow of home. But the tone of the home is set by what is allowed to enter and often by what mood is allowed to flourish. And most of what is shared, is not 'news' but political propaganda, confusion, partial stories, articles with no regard to a Creator or creative stories that offer little hope and too much distraction. We are aware. But not sucked into the chaos.

pursuing simplicity... embracing the joy that comes from watching birds. It's true. Our house is filled with bird watchers... even the dog will sit on the couch and look out the window at the feeder. We live in an area where there is wide variety of birds and my daughter created a simple feeding station to which numerous flock. Cardinals, Finches, Woodpeckers, Tufted Titmouse, Chickadee's and Junco's abound.

~ cardinal visiting our bird feeding station ~

nurturing souls... we are working on memorizing a new portion of Scripture. {1 Peter 3:8 – 12} And listening to Torah Class's Teachings on the Book of Acts. I would strongly encourage the teachings for anyone, for multiple reasons. One of which would be give you a solid context and history of the Apostle Paul. Tom Bradford has a lot to offer in the way of historical accuracy.

building community and sustainability... remember that we are all human. We all have struggles, we make mistakes, we get it wrong sometimes... but those things do not define you. It's what you do on the other side of them that matters. What you learn through the struggle, how you right a wrong... how you forgive. Yourself and others. How you get back up and praise your Maker and carry on bravely!

from hearth and home... this morning I bombed my THM diet and made off plan oatmeal pancakes with whole wheat flour, full fat raw milk, topped those babies with butter and organic sugar free strawberry jam. I did it. It's true. And I am only slightly sorry... because the smiles on my family's faces were worth it.

~ spinach under hoop houses ~

in sowing and reaping... well. I reaped a stock pile of beans. Lots of beans. Honestly, we love beans... and I have a really hard time eating meat three or four times a week. For one it's pricey. Second... my body loves beans. My body responds better to plant based foods and cultured dairy products. Anyway the beans will help pad our pantry in the days to come and I am very thankful for the cushion they offer.

creations for the apothecary... I am waiting for two creations to come forth form the cupboard. One is our Elderberry Brandy and the other is Passionflower Tincture. The Passionflower tincture is used for stomach concerns, anxiety and for calming to the mind. You can read more about Passion Flower here.

~ blessings!

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