September 28, 2008

Menu Planning Monday #3

It's been a super busy week here. All 4 of our girls have been sick and 1 year old is teething AND sick with a cold. Not fun, but we are pulling through and getting slowly back to normal. I've got to do some grocery shopping tomorrow so thought I would jump in on Menu Planning Monday and get myself organized for the upcoming two weeks.

With the cost of food going up so quickly I really need to keep myself in line with the menus this time as to stick to our budget. I took a very specific inventory of what we have on hand and have planned around those items. This is what I have come up with, in no specific order of day as to allow for schedule changes and such.

  • Lentil Stew, Oatmeal Pan Rolls
  • Lasagna, Salad
  • Crock Pot Chicken Enchilada Casserole, Refried beans, lettuce, sour cream, salsa
  • Chicken Stir Fry, Rice
  • Jamaican Red Beans and Rice, Salad
  • Shepherd's Pie, Salad
  • BBQ Chicken Sandwiches (Crock Pot), Cole Slaw, Baked Beans, Chicken Noodles
  • Beef Stew with Dumplings
  • Pinto Beans, Collard Greens, Born Bread, Hot Dogs

Bible Study: Romans (Part 4)

I can't believe it's taken me so long to get to this post, I do apologize to those that are following along with me in this study.

We did not go to church today due to our children having colds. We are about to do a Family Devotion Time so I thought I would quickly add to the series that I have been doing on the Book of Romans. We finished Chapter one last time so today I am starting in chapter 2. If you are new to this study, you can read the previous posts here.

OK, let's get started...

In Romans Chapter 2 we are first warned against judging others because we too do the same things as those we judge (maybe not the "same things" but sin in general , we too are sinners so we should not judge others sins). We are told that God judges according to truth. God will judge us that judge others. This is something we really have to be careful of as Christians. It is very easy to fall into the trap of holding others in judgement without thinking of our own sinful nature.

In verse 4 it says that it is God's goodness that leads us to repentance. Judging someone and condemning them of their sin can't make a person change, it is only by the goodness of God that a person can change their ways. God will judge us righteously according to our own works (verse 6).

We are told in verses7-11 "how" God will judge us. If we have patience in doing well, look for glory and honor and incorruption, we will gain eternal life. However, if we are factious and do not obey God's truth we will receive God's wrath.

Let's keep these things in mind as we continue to study the book of Romans and as we have opportunity to fellowship and spend time with our brothers and sisters in Christ. More on Romans to follow VERY soon... :0)

September 23, 2008

Sick Day

Yesterday night my 4 year old kept telling me she had a "sticky throat". She was saying it with a funny face and laughing so I thought she was making a joke. She seemed fine and I didn't think too much about it. Well, this morning she woke up with a fever and I realized she must have been getting sick yesterday. So, today we had a "sick day". She (and her sisters too of course) got to have popcicles and watch some morning PBS TV shows and generally relax a while.

She is still a little feverish but doing somewhat better and so far no one else in the house is showing any signs of the illness. Praise God!

I'm hoping to get the next part of the Bible study on Romans up before the end of this week. We have had a busy past several days and I haven't been on-line much. It has been such a blessing for me to read through Romans again, I pray this study is blessing all who are reading along with me.

Hope everyone is having a blessed week!

September 19, 2008

Cheesy Ham and Veggie Chowder

September is when I really start to think a lot about warm meals. Even though it can still get quite hot outside around here, I begin to crave nice warm comfort foods. My kids really like potato soup. I found a copy cat recipe on-line for the potato soup at Wildflower Bread Company and I changed it up a bit and my girls love it.

This time I made the soup, I wanted to come up with something a little more hearty since my husband is a person who likes to have meat with all his meals. After taking a peek to see what we had on hand, I came up with this variation of the recipe that we all love. This recipe makes A LOT so be prepared to freeze some (it freezes great!) or serve this at a get together. Your guests will love it!

Cheesy Ham and Veggie Chowder

1 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
1 lb. bag frozen corn
2 onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
1 lb. bag frozen cauliflower
1 lb. bag chopped frozen broccoli
1 red or green bell pepper, diced
1/4 head of cabbage, chopped
1 lb. diced ham, smoked turkey sausage or crumbled bacon
4 Qts. chicken broth
1 stick butter, divided in half
1 c. whole milk
1/4 c. corn starch
1 c. shredded sharp cheddar cheese
1 tsp. dried dill weed
1 block cream cheese
Season salt and pepper to taste
sliced scallions for serving

In a large (8 or 12 Qt.) stock pot, melt 1/2 of the butter. Add onions and celery and cook over medium heat for about 8 minutes, stirring frequently, until veggies are soft. Add broth and vegetables. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and let simmer for about 30 minutes or until potatoes are soft. Mash a few of the potatoes right in the pot to release the starch as a thickener. Stir the corn starch into the milk then slowly pour into the pot while stirring. Stir in cheddar cheese until it melts. Cut cream cheese in small pieces and stir in until it melts. Stir in dill. Stir in ham or sausage or bacon. Season with seasoned salt and pepper to your taste. Finish by stirring in the last of the butter until melted. Serve garnished with bacon bits and sliced scallions.

September 18, 2008

The ABC's Of Homemaking

I saw this on Girly's blog and thought I would participate, it was fun! If you want to play too, post it and leave me a comment.

Aprons--y/n If y, what does your fave look like?
I only own one right now, I made it and it's a bright red/brown/gold pattern. I have another cut out with a pattern of grapes that I need to sew up.

Baking--Favorite thing to bake?
anything! I LOVE to bake!

Clothes line?
I wish we had one, we have an electric dryer.

Donuts--Have you ever made them?
No but I would love to try!

Everyday--One homemaking thing you do every day?
laundry, dishes, cook, vacuum

Freezer--Do you have a separate deep freeze?
No but I want one!

Garbage Disposer?

Handbook--What is your favorite homemaking resource?
The Internet

Ironing--Love it or Hate it? Or hate it but love the results?
Hate it and never do it unless it for a sewing project. My hubby is the best at ironing and doesn't mind doing it either.

Junk Drawer--y/n? Where is it?
2 in the kitchen

Kitchen--color and decorating scheme.
eclectic, homey

Love--what is your favorite part of homemaking?
being at home with my family

rarely but if I have to I will

Nylons, machine or hand wash?
rarely wear them but I machine wash them when I do

Oven--do you use the window or open the oven to check?

Pizza--What do you put on yours?
pepperoni, bell pepper, onion, black olives

Quiet--What do you do during the day when you get a quiet moment?
Internet, read or just sit and think.

Recipe Card Box--y/n? What does it look like?
yep, and a binder and a blog

Style of house--What style is your house?
it's a sort of generic style around here, most of the homes look the same

Tablecloths or Placemats?

Under the kitchen sink--organized or toxic wasteland?
petty organized, could use a little work

Vacuum--How many times per week?
2-3 a day, we have carpet under our dining table

Wash--How many loads of laundry do you do per week?
too many to count!

X's--Do you keep a daily list of things to do that you cross off?
yep, I have lots of lists

Yard--y/n? Who does what?
not much out there but rocks, the kids pick up their toys and hubby pulls weeks or hires someone to do it

ZZZ's--what is your last homemaking task for the day before going to bed?
turn on the dishwasher

Anyone else want to play the ABCs?

September 16, 2008

A Blessed Mess

Have you ever looked at your house when it was messy and thought of how blessed you are? Normally, that is not my first reaction. But last night it was. We had a very long day, running errands all over town and came home to quite a mess which it was much too late to tackle. I just stood there and thought of how much God has blessed us. The fact that my kids have all these toys that many children only wish they could have... the fact that there were lots and lots of groceries to put away that many families cannot afford... the fact that the laundry was piled up reminded me of all the people who are in need of clothing in the world. I didn't see the mess, I saw the blessings bestowed upon us by a mighty and awesome God!

We spent a lot of time last week organizing things. Bookshelves were sorted and reorganized in anticipation for several packages of brand new books that are due to arrive any day to add to our homeschool library. Closets were sorted and organized in anticipation of an upcoming shopping trip for new winter items, the kitchen was cleaned and organized for yesterday's shopping trip.

This morning the house is still a bit messy and my girls and I are off to clean it right now so we can spend the afternoon learning.

It's easy to feel down when faced with the never ending job of keeping your home in order, but when those kinds of thoughts try to get you down, just remember that all that needs to be cleaned up and kept in order are true blessings from God.

Pray you are having a blessed day!

September 12, 2008

Relaxing Afternoon

This is the first time in a while that we have taken the afternoon off just to relax. The girls were just tired today so I thought the afternoon off would do us all good. I am catching up on some of my favorite blogs while they watch one of their favorite Strawberry Shortcake videos.

I'm planning to post the next Romans Bible study installment in a day or two, stay tuned and have a blessed weekend!

September 8, 2008

She did it!

All of my babies were bottle fed. One thing I wore I would never do is to let a baby go to bed with a bottle. I know how bad it can be for their teeth and all. That was before I met my youngest daughter. Let's just say she is VERY stubborn :0)

So, now she is a year and 4 months old and STILL wants her "Ba" at night.

Last night my husband and I were just discussing how this is not good for her and trying to come up with some ideas on how to wean her from it.

When I woke up this morning I found a FULL bottle in her crib. Looks like she is starting to wean herself. Praise God! :0)

Potty training and weaning from night time bottles. Two of the things in life that I am NOT good at.

September 6, 2008

First Week of School Re-cap

We've had a great first week of school! We finished up today because Monday is always our day off since my husband is off work that day. We tend to do errands on Mondays as well. On Saturdays we do a couple cartoons and pancakes for breakfast in the morning, then chores and while 2 year old naps we do a light school day and prep for church the next day. Usually a lot of reading and then a worksheet or two while I prepare food for church lunch. After that they can go outside and play or read or play whatever they like while I sneak in a little craft time.

I'm really pleased with our choice for math this year. The girls love the Horizons books and always want to do math first. What a blessing!

I'm taking things really slow and easy for our 4 year old for preschool. Some mornings if we have time we watch Sesame Street. She also loves We use different methods of teaching her the alphabet and numbers. Her older sisters love to work with her with flash cards or a large white board or just some plain paper and crayons. She also loves all of her workbooks that have things to cut and paste as well as having all of us read to her.

Our 2 year old is loving being read to as well and also is having fun learning to use crayons.

6 year old and 8 year old are both very eager this year which I am very pleased about. It makes our school day go by so much faster!

September 4, 2008

Crunchy Munchy Honey Cakes

Have you ever heard the song "Crunchy Munchy Honey Cakes" by The Wiggles? My kids love that song and they love The Wiggles. So after taking a look around on-line I found a recipe to make the Crunchy Munchy Honey Cakes. We made them today to have with our lunch and they were surprisingly good!

I'd suggest a double batch for a large family, although they are quite filling. The recipe was found on the Wiggles website.

Here's the song in case you have not heard it, it's really super cute for kids :0)

September 2, 2008

First Day of School!

Today is our official "First Day of School" and we spent all day yesterday getting ready. We do a lot of our schoolwork at our kitchen table which is in an area that also serves as our dining room, an area to sit and read and relax and for me to sew. It us a very multi-purpose room that we really have to keep on top of cleaning or it gets messy really fast. Yesterday the girls and I spent a good part of the day getting the bookshelves organized so that we'd be all ready to start this morning.

Here's a little tour of our dining/school area...

The picture above is of two of our bookshelves. We keep all of our school books on these as well as some of my husband's books and Bibles as well as my cookbooks. Up top I keep a carousel of scrapbooking scissors, a globe, a road atlas, some sets of crayons, colored pencils and markers and a toy for 2 year old that is just for school time. Each of our school aged girls has her own shelf for books, folders, binder, etc. The table to the left of the shelves is an extra one in case I need to separate my talkative little ladies in order to get them more focused on their studies. :0)

Above is the dining table and by the window are a couple of pots of herbs... cilantro and basil. Our basil is growing really fast, I really need to trim it back! On the wall we have an alphabet chart and another chart with letters, numbers, colors, etc.

Here is "Daddy's Chair" next to our storage cabinet. Inside of it we keep various school supplies, coloring books, crayons, and pencil boxes for each of the school age girls. If they kept those on their personal shelves then our 2 year old would surely empty them several times a day. :0)

Finally, above you see our sofa that the girls love to cuddle up on to read. Next to it is a laundry basket full of books that don't fit on the shelves. On the other side is a bookshelf full of reading books and games. We have the play pen all ready but it might get stored away if we don't end up using it. 2 year old is in an "in between stage" where she loves it at times and really doesn't like it at all other times. I'm sure by the end of today I will decide if we need it up or not. It would be nice to take it down and enjoy some extra floor space for playing :0)

Hope you enjoyed the tour! :0) I better get going so we can get started!

September 1, 2008

Bible Study: Romans (Part 3)

If you missed any of the posts I have done on the book of Romans, check my left hand side bar and click the link under Lables that says Romans. That should catch you up to where we are now.

As I said, Romans shows us that God wants us to be aware that not only is He a loving God, but we do need to remember that he will show His wrath against us if we do not obey His commands. God's truth can't be hidden by anyone, no matter how much they try.

(Rom 1:18) For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hinder the truth in unrighteousness;

God's truth can be seen through all that He has made, that is why it cannot be hidden.

(Rom 1:20) For the invisible things of him since the creation of the world are clearly seen, being perceived through the things that are made, even his everlasting power and divinity; that they may be without excuse:

We need to keep careful watch on nour minds and thoughts. Pridefulness, vanity and turning away from God can only lead to foolishness and idoletry.

(Rom 1:21) because that, knowing God, they glorified him not as God, neither gave thanks; but became vain in their reasonings, and their senseless heart was darkened. (Rom 1:22) Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, (Rom 1:23) and changed the glory of the incorruptible God for the likeness of an image of corruptible man, and of birds, and four-footed beasts, and creeping things.

If we fall into this trap God will surrender us and we will fall into sin. Leaving your mind open to false teachings which go against God's Word can only lead to sin.

(Rom 1:28) And even as they refused to have God in their knowledge, God gave them up unto a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not fitting; (Rom 1:29) being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malignity; whisperers, (Rom 1:30) backbiters, hateful to God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, (Rom 1:31) without understanding, covenant-breakers, without natural affection, unmerciful:
Being in sin like this or consenting to those that are in such sin can only lead to death.
(Rom 1:32) who, knowing the ordinance of God, that they that practise such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but also consent with them that practise them.

I'm really enjoying reading through Romans because it's so full of sound doctrine and straightforward truth. There is no denying God's Word and Paul certainly does not mince his words in getting across to us the expectations that God has for our lives and Christians.

I'll pick up next time with Romans Chapter 2.