Sunday, February 28, 2010

Pleasing him

Well the month of February is about to an end. I didn't manage to get a post written every day on little ways to show love to your husband but there were quite a few. It was a fun project for me and I think a neat one for our marriage.

I was trying to decide what was appropriate to have on this last day (though actually I do want to keep writing on this regularly) I decided that this verse is a good and needed one:

 "Let the husband fulfill his duty to his wife, and likewise also the wife to her husband. The wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does; and likewise also the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does. Stop depriving one another, except by agreement for a time that you may devote yourselves to prayer, and come together again lest Satan tempt you because of your lack of self-control." 1 Cor. 7:3-5

I think this verse is pretty self explanatory and I don't want to go into it on this blog but I thought I would mention this thought I had, past the obvious meaning of this it seems to me that if the wife's body is for her husband, I think we should present ourselves in a way that pleases him (and of course that pleases God as well!), meaning do you wear things and do your hair in a way that your husband likes? That is something that we often put a lot of thought into before marriage but sometimes can not be thought about so much later on. When I am picking clothes (especially getting new ones) I like to think about what kind of things Ken likes to see me in. Also if I am thinking about a new hairstyle I like to consult him first and get his opinion. I want him to like the way I look and to please him in that way.

Have fun loving your husband!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Ease his workload

Here is another idea from Alysia:

"Try to look for stuff you can do to ease his workload-even if he doesn't ask. My hubby used to do groceries all the time for me, and still does not mind doing it. But I thought, I am able to do this with the children, and then he won't have to use that time on week-ends to do it anymore-so now we all go Friday afternoons, and it's great!=)"

This is something I have done some (scooping snow, mowing the lawn and various things like that) but not as often as I would like. I want to do this more. I think it is a great way to show my love.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Getting rid of set stains

Recently I had a breakthrough with getting set stains out of some of our clothes so I thought it would be fun to share what I found out.

   I had a cotton knit white shirt that I really liked but had stained the elbow of at some time. (I guess I put my elbow in something without realizing it.) I was wanting to wear it the other day but didn't want to wear it with the stain so I tried to figure out what I could do to get the stain out.

    I am all out of bleach (and trying not to use it much anyway) but I remembered that Hydrogen Peroxide can remove stains at times. I put some H.P. on the stain (that was well set at this point- it had been through the wash many times) and it started to fizz and seemed to be working. I worked with it and then rinsed it out. The stain didn't all come out but it seemed to be a bit lighter. Then I sprayed it with shout and put it through the wash and YEA! it was all pure white again! (and I didn't think to take any pictures of that one!)

   Later I tried it one various different stains on white things. It didn't work on everything but it did on some.
This stain on Mara's shirt....

....disappeared.  Yea!

Sorry I wasn't able to get very good pictures but I was excited about the results so I wanted to tell you all too! It seems like inevitably we end up with stain white clothes and then though they may be perfectly good in any other way they are basically ready to be turned into rags. If I can get the stains out instead that will be a very good deal!

Removing set stains certianly works for me!

I would love to hear your greatest stain removing tricks!

Say "I love you"

There is this story I have heard about a couple that had been married 25 years or so and one day the wife asks her husband "Why don't you ever say you love me?" The husband replies "I told you I loved you when we got married and if that ever changes I will let you know."

That is funny to laugh over but it wouldn't be very funny if that was how it was in our marriages. We can't make our Husbands say "I love you" (and I have no need to) but we can certianly tell him that we love him.

Ken and I like to say those words pretty often. We don't always say "I love you" when he leaves for work but we often do. We don't always say "I love you" when we talk on the phone but we often do. We don't always say it just before we fall to sleep at night but we often do. I don't want it to be something we just say automatically without thinking about it but I do want to say it often! Throughout the day in many ways it is fun to remind our husband verbally that we love them.

Another thing that I think is fun to do is send a little e-mail to him at work just to let him know that I love him. Do you have any special ways of communicating that message to your husband? Lets not ever assume that they know that already, lets tell them!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Be thankful for your husband

Something that I have found to be good for our marriage is to come up with a list (either written or in my head) of things about Ken that I am thankful for. For example:

  • I am thankful for Ken being such a hardworker.
  •  I am thankful that Ken is careful with our money.
  •  I am thankful that Ken really enjoys playing with and spending time with our children.
And on and on!

Being thankful is always good and I think it always puts you in a better frame of mind after you practise thankfulness. This little exercise is especially good to do at times when your husband may have done something that you don't feel so thankful for. After making the list you realize that even though you feel unhappy about one thing there are so many other things that you are happy about.

Have you done this before? What are your thoughts?

Monday, February 22, 2010

Gratitude for a Winter Wonderland

  "It is the living who give thanks to Thee, as I do today;
A father tells his sons about Thy faithfulness."
Isaiah 38:19

We have been having fun lately spending a little more time outside. This post's pictures reflect that. I am so glad that God has given us different seasons with different activities to enjoy! Here are a few of the things that I am thanking God for:

#394 Frost on the trees. We have been waking up many mornings lately to see that. It is so beautiful! I love seeing what God can do! (The picture above doesn't begin to do it justice!)

#395 Creative Children.

#396 Fun times watching the Olympics together.

#397 Inspiration that we get from the Olympics.

#398 Children that really love and enjoy each other.

#399 Older siblings that offer to help their younger siblings.

#400 Sunny days!

#401 A little warmer weather that draws us outside.

#402 Determination and perserverance.

#403 Health that God provides. Each muscle that moves and works because He made it too.

#404 Courage to try new things- even little ski jumps. :-)

#405 Fun times getting to know poeple from other countries.

#406 Mara's quick healing after a crash. A God's eye watching out for every single person going down the hills.

#407 Lots of fun together times with Ken lately.

#408 Enjoying a happy marriage!

#409 My "baby" sister who I love being able to spend time with.

#410 My very silly boy!

#411 Smiles that light up my days.

#412 A God who loves me even though I am not perfect!

#413 Forgiveness of sin.

What are you thankful for this week?

holy experience

Sunday, February 21, 2010


I thought I would share another idea for loving your husband that Alysia sent.

"Serve in the little things (that feel big at the time) Like...he forgot to check to locks and we are already in bed, I can hop out and do it if he's tired.....or be the one to make the tea and bring it to him...or put his stuff away instead of waiting for him to do it...etc. etc. these little opportunities to serve really add up!"

I think this is a wonderful tip. I can really relate to the locks one. I know that has happened with us to and I do remember offering to go check them but I don't think I actually jumped up to do it and he went ahead and did it. One of the ways that has worked for us is bringing him his "bedtime snack" or a glass of water especially when he is hot and sweaty and working outside. I know Ken appreciates being served especially when I do it with a special smile just for him.


As I have mentioned before we have been enjoying watching the Winter Olympics lately.  It is so cool to see the atheletes perserverance and skill.

  Tonight I heard a verse at church that made me think of the Olympics again. The verse is:
 "But flee from these things, you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perserverance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnessess. " 1 Timothy 6:11-12

This verse isn't talking about things being easy. It talks of Fleeing, pursueing and fighting. Living the christian life takes work, sometimes it will be harder than we think we are capable of. But just like we see the atheletes in the Olympics do we need to be willing to push ourselves, to work and run harder than we ever thought possible. The prize in this race is far more important than any gold medal!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Celebrations with Creativity instead of Cost

Before Valentines Day this year I was pretty busy and felt a little worn out. So I didn't really get anything done in the way of decorating. I had decided not to worry about it as it didn't seem like it was essential but I found out the kids didn't quite feel that way. So the night before I pushed myself to make some special things (Cheese cake, blueberry muffins, cards and little treats) and then the morning of I just quickly looked around at what I had to do some super fast decorating.

     I pulled out some pretty shiny pink fabric and then some silver netting which I put together to make a tablecloth. Then I added some pink tulips that were leftover from the Bridal Fair. Megan decided we also needed the pink Hyacinths on the table. I also grabbed my heart shape tins and a heart shaped basket (which I added a pink ribbon to) and added them to the table.

   It was very quick but it changed the look of our dining room which made the kids happy and even Ken commited on how pretty the table looked. I was happy too because I didn't have to go  buy anything or spend to much time and it still looked like we were celebrating!

This kids got into the act too. Aaron hung up a little wreath he had made at the library and cut out some more hearts to hang up as well. Jonathan cut out some red hearts which he added to the table top. Mara had worked hard the evening before to make little surprises to put on everyone's plates and also made hearts to hang up.
Megan got in the action too and decided she needed to make Valentines to put on everyone's plates too.

   This sort of thing always make me realize how much fun and celebration we can have with out costing anything at all. A special event can be made from Creativity instead of money.

This doesn't just work for Valentines day. It can work for birthday parties, weddings, Christmas and any other sort of party that you desire to have. You can't always throw a party with no cost at all but you can certianly use a lot less money if you use some creativity too!

There is a wedding blog {Ruffled}  I have been having a ton of fun reading lately that features a lot of vintage and DIY weddings. There have been some really cool ideas. The ideas make you realize how much you can do using things you already have on hand. Also how cool it can be to buy dresses and other things second hand.

Here are some other ideas I have come across that call for some creativity but could cost very little and you could still have a very fun celebration!
  • Have a nature theme. There are so many things that can be had if you are just willing to go out and pick them up. It depends on where you live to what is most available but here are some ideas: pinecones, shells, rocks, grasses, twigs, sweet gum balls, mistle toe,birch bark, cattails, wildflowers,  "weeds" and so much more! God has made so many beautiful things and so many of them are in abundance!
  • A recycling theme. This one is rather fun.
  • When you are decorating for any event simply chose your colors and then go through your house and see what you have in those colors. You might be surprised what you come up with to decorate with. It is fun to use your creativity in that way.
  • Have a destination theme. Chose a place, decorate with old maps and atlases. Check out books from the library or look on the internet for ideas for the menu, games and decorations. If you look hard you can probably find a lot of things that can be made yourself from stuff you have on hand.
  • A circus party can be made using lots of stuffed animals, some old clothes, lots of popcorn (cheap!), some ballons and a bunch of kids having fun doing "tricks".
  • For Mother's or Father's day think about what those people enjoy most and decorate and cook accordingly. A lot of times an expensive budget is simply not needed!
  • Tea Parties are lovely events to use what pretty things you have on hand. Check out this sweet one my sister had with my kids.
  • Have your event outdoors using Christmas lights and whatever else seems fun to you. It can be quite fun! Check out my sister's birthday party.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Laugh together

One thing we have had fun with in our marriage is naturally enjoying our children. The only thing is I have way more time with them (as a stay at home mom) than Ken does, and they do and say a lot of cute things while he is away at work.

 So what to do? I try to remember them and share them with him (if needed in private so they don't get embarrassed) when he gets home. Parenting is a great joy and sharing it together is wonderful! It is great for our marriage and laughing together is always fun!

Do you have fun sharing cute kid stories with your husband?

Little lovely bits and pieces of life

This is my odds and ends post! :-) Different parts of life that have been captured by the camera. Snapshots of life that I am enjoying right now.
 Some "new" silverware that I found at Goodwill. (I hardly ever go there as I simply don't need anything but this was fun to shop for!) Some of it even matched my good set exactly and other ones were very close. They are all nice quality and there was enough that I got rid of our cheap set that was sharp on the hands.

Making keifer. I got the start (keifer grains) from my sister Anna and also the instructions for making it. It is easy to make, has a neat taste and is good for you. Anna tells all about it on her blog.

 Last Saturday Mara and I were headed to the Wedding Expo and were just in awe of how God had decorated during the night. All the trees and bushes where just covered with frost. I didn't stop to get a picture right then (the camera was in the trunk) but I wish I had.

After we got to our destination Mara went out and took some pretty pictures including the one to the right. There weren't as many trees around to take pictures of however.

 This is my beautiful helper at the show. She is fun to have around. It is fun to see how outgoing she is. She went around to every other booth and got aquainted with everybody. I don't think there is one shy bone in her body which always continues to amaze me as that is NOT how Ken and I were at her age.

On Sunday night at church we have been doing things a little differenty for this month. We are having a short song service and a scripture reading and then we have been doing things to get ready for our upcoming Retreat. This past Sunday night some worked on a play and some of us had fun gathering around the piano and learning some new songs. I love informally gathering around and singing in four part harmony praises to our God.

Keren cut my hair last week. I am enjoying a shorter and different look. The picture to the left is not how it looks at its best as I had been wearing a hat so it was rather flattened. I am so blessed to have a sister who can cut hair and I don't have to go out and spend a bunch of money elsewhere. Thanks Keren!

Fun with puppets on Wednesday night. Mary and I are teaching the kids on Wed. nights and Mary came up with this really cute method for making sock puppets. The kids loved them!

In Class we have been talking about following in Jesus' steps and this week was especially about service. Mary decided to wash the kids feet. I wasn't sure how they would react but they loved it! The little ones especially. :-)
I am enjoying teaching the kids about working with flowers. As I get busier the better my helpers will get.

And just a sweet/silly picture of my Aaron boy taken by auntie Keren.

 I hope you are having lots of lovely moments at your houses too! :-)

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Noticing the little things that bother him.

  I have a very tidy husband which is a huge blessing. In fact he tends to be neater than I am and clutter really bothers him. There are a few spots in our house (Flat surfaces as he likes to say) like the kitchen counter, to top of our deep freeze and my nightstand to name a few that have a tendency to collect stuff. It just seems to happen. But it bugs Ken.

  So I am trying to get better at keeping them cleaned off. This is one little (though sometimes it feels pretty big!) way that I can show him I love him. I am not doing a perfect job yet, (the busier I am the harder time I have it seems) but I am trying.

Do your husbands have little things that bother them in your house? Is there anything you can do to fix them?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Fabric covered "Vases"

Whew! Life has been busy lately! It seems like I have hardly been on here at all. I actually have done a lot of posts in February but most of them have been short and I prescheduled quite a few so actually I haven't been on here real regularly. February has been a quite busy one with my business so I have been busy with "projects". This month I have weddings, bridal shows (well actually one of them was the last day in Jan.), consultations and then putting together quotes. Of course there is still all the normal responsibilities as homemaker, wife, mother and homeschooler. I have been busy with politics this month too as we get ready for a busy summer getting ready for the elections this fall. At church we are busy with getting ready for a Retreat in a little less than a month and I am currently teaching Wednesday night class. And then on top of that I have to admit our family is rather Winter Olympics Junkies! :-) Normally the kids and I watch no TV but lately.... well our evenings have often found us in the family room cheering on the Americans or whoever we think really deserves to win. The kids are trying to figure out just what sport they want to be good at so that they can go to the olympics someday. I am of course encouraging the safe ones which seem to be rather few! Anyway all that to say that someday (maybe next month) I will probably start posting more about projects and stuff again!

  But I will share a quick project that I put together last week:

I used some tin cans and some pretty fabric scraps (given to me by my lovely niece Margaret). In some of my Wedding flower magazines I had seen some cool fabric covered vases that makes a simple but fun look for the center of a table.
It was pretty easy to recreate! I just cut the fabric to size, used hot glue to make it stay when I wrapped it around and then I folded some to the inside on top and glued it there and then I glued the excess fabric underneath on the bottom as well.

Very fast and easy! I think it looks sweet too!   AND... It recycles and was totally free!

Do you have any cool ways you use tins cans? Someday soon I am hoping to write a whole post on things you can make or do with tin cans. I would love to hear your ideas! If you have posted about it, please leave a link because when I write the list I plan on linking to posts that explain how to do it or at least have pictures.

This is linked to A Soft place to Land's DIY day and Reinvented.

With Patience

Galatians 5:22 says that one of the fruit of the spirit is patience. This is important throughout life with everybody that we are in contact with and it is certianly important in our relationship with our husband.

  By nature I am not a patient person, I don't think very many people are. It is something I have to work on and I am very thankful to have the Holy Spirit working in my life so that patience can become a part of my personality. So with the Holy Spirit's help it is my goal to be more patient every day with everyone I am around.

  Here are some ways I think that patience is particularly important in marriage.
  1.  Husbands (and wives!) don't always get things done as fast as we would like them too. That is just the way it is, everybody is busy, everybody has different priorities as to what is most important. A nagging wife (one who is impatient) doesn't ever endear herself to her husband, I think these verses in Proverbs say it very well: "It's better to stay outside on the roof of your house than to live inside with a nagging wife." "It's better out in the desert than at home with a nagging, complaining wife." Prov. 21:9 & 19. Showing a little patience rather than nagging is a very good choice! :-)
  2. We are all a work in progress, our husbands included. They aren't perfect and so just like we appreciate them being patient with us, we need to be patient with them.
So my goal is to be PATIENT!

 "We urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with everyone." 1 Thessalonians 5:14


Sunday, February 14, 2010

In my reading of Isaiah I love this verse that talks about the nature of God:

 "Therefore the Lord longs to be gracious to you,
and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice;
How blessed are all those who long for Him."
Isaiah 30:18

God is Gracious, Compassionate and Just. I am so glad He is my God. I am indeed very blessed!

Love is patient, love is kind....

This is my inspiration for today:

 "Love is patient, love is kind, and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoiced with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things." 1 Corinthians 13:4-7

Saturday, February 13, 2010

A special meal at home

Here is another idea from Alysia. This is one I have heard of before but never tried. I think it sounds interesting.

"Plan a special dinner for two! Either have the children eat early and do a quiet activity while you eat, or do it after bedtime. This has been fun, and feels like a date, even when we haven't left the house=) I have moved a little table into the living room with candles and dim light, and it felt real 'restaurant' like=)"

Have you ever done this? If so how did it work for you. I am trying to imagine this with our kids. Doing it after they go to bed (Around 9:30) sounds a bit late but I think they might enjoy being the wait staff if they are still up..... It might work.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Eating what you have and substituting for what you don't have.

Last month I had fun joining in with the Eat from your pantry challange. We were (and are) well stocked up on the basics so it wasn't to hard. I did have to work at having enough variety to suit me. One of the ways that I find that really helps in economical cooking and baking is being willing to substitute. This is something I have always done a lot of as I watched my Mom doing it the whole time I was growing up. Ken teases me regularly about this trait, he is convinced that I absolutely never follow a recipe, I think I do once in a great while, but perhaps he is right.

  Your food can still turn out fine even while substituting, there are just some basic quidelines that help a lot. Here are some of the ones that I can think of right now:

  • Feel free to substitute flours. I use recipes all the time that call for regular flour but I rarely use it. Instead I use whole wheat flour, rye flour, corn meal, oatmeal and other whole grain flours. As long as it is dry and has a similiar consistency it should work! :-) The product won't be indentical to that in the cookbook but if you haven't used that recipe before anyway you won't know the difference!
  • Exchange liquid for other liquids. In my baked goods especially I do a lot of substituting here. My basic rule is look at how much liquids are used (Add up milk, oil or butter, etc) and then I put in whatever else I want to. I have been using a lot of pumpkin which adds a little nutrition but generaly doesn't change the flavor. (I probably wouldn't do this in an angel food cake!)
  • Things like fruit, nuts or chocolate chips in baking can usually be changed however you desire. Generally you can leave them out and still have a nice finished product or add them in to a recipe that doesn't have them or change them. If it calls for blueberries but you have raspberries, then swap them! You can come up with wonderful new recipes this way!
  • How about sweeteners? I am still in the learning process with this. All my life I have done things like cut the sugar in half but lately I have been working to eliminate sugar from our diet so I have been trying to use maple syrup, molasses and honey instead. This is a bit complicated as all of these are liquid. What I have found to work pretty well is to eliminate some of the other liquid and also the sugar in the recipe and then add the liquid sweetener in the amount to replace the liquid you eliminated.
  • Cooking is even easier to mix things up in than baking. Feel free to use hamburger insteand of diced steak or maybe even cooked chicken for a different style. Just let yourself be creative! I usually just use recipes as an idea starter or a guideline. From there you can totally do what you want!
 Personally I have a lot more fun in the kitchen if I can be creative and do something different. I would love to hear your good or wacky substitutions!

  If you want to do some very careful substituting check out this very comprehensive list!

  I also thought I should report on how I did on the Pantry Challange. I finally got all the reciepts together and added it up and now tonight I can't find my paper! Here is what I remember:

For Dairy and Produce I had alotted $100. In this area I went slightly over and spent $104 and a few cents. It was interesting to see just how much we spend on milk! I am curious how much milk other families use. We drink it usually for every breakfast and supper (for lunch and in between times we drink water) and we go through4-5 gallons a week. If you don't drink milk for meals what do you drink? I am just curious.

I had bought some Gluten free diet for our experiment with having Megan go Gluten Free. That cost $31. That was according to my plan. We are off the gluten free diet, I had fun doing it for her for 2 weeks but it seemed to hinder more than help.

I did "cheat" and bought Ketchup for $1.88.

I did a little stocking up but not nearly as much as the $75 I alloted. I spent around $35 in that area.

My total was around $172 which was under the $205 that I had allowed myself. I was pleased with the end result.
I also did not go to Walmart as planned. I am hoping not to go to Walmart in February either. I am hoping to stay under $250 for groceries this month. We still have quite a lot of food to eat from the pantry. Some of my other goals this month are going sugar free (using natural sweeteners instead) and drinking a lot of water!

For more frugal thougts please visit Life as MOM.

Child training affects a marriage.

I thought I would share another of the tips that Alysia (a blog reader) sent.

"Do a great job training and teaching the children while he is off at work so he can come home to happy children who have interesting things to tell Dad about and he can enjoy them=) but...don't do too much stuff that you don't have energy left for him! "

I think this is a great way to show love for our husbands!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Be your husbands biggest fan

   One of the things that I think is important for a good marriage is that you believe in each other. That doesn't mean that I think that Ken is the best at doing everything, he isn't. But there are a ton of things he is very good at. He truly excels! It is my job to let him know that I notice and that I think he is doing a good job.

    So something that I am going to work on more and encourage you to do as well, is complimenting my husband. Finding the things that he does very well and telling him so. Not only that but "bragging" on him a little too.


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