Thursday, January 27, 2011

Really thankful?

I tucked in the sheets, and smoothed out my bed cover, eyeing the basket of freshly washed clothes that sat next to my bed.  Those would need to be put away.  Several chores crossed my mind that I'd like to get done today or the next,... begin the grout cleaning, scrub down the shower, finish making bedroom curtains... on and on the list goes.

I wasn't thinking of it as overwhelming, just going over it in my mind, and then a thought occured to me.

Every chore that I have on my list is a reminder of a specific blessing in my life.

I am so very blessed to have clothes to wash fold and put away...there are many who have very little.  There are many who have no shoes, no washer or dryer, no laundry basket to sit by the bed.

I am so very blessed to have grout to clean.  I have a home with tile floors, I have a roof over my head, walls to keep me safe and warm...or cool.  There are so many who have dirt floors, a sheet of aluminum for a roof, ...or no home at all.

I am so very blessed to have a shower that needs a scrubdown, a potty to clean, and sink to wash out.  I have not one, but two bathrooms in my home.  There are many who have no place for such a private luxury.  No plumbing or pipes to take away the refuse, no soft towels to dry off with, so soap or clean water to bathe in.

I am so very blessed to be making new curtains for my bedroom.  I have fabric, money, a sewing machine, and a home with glass windows that let in sunshine but keep out rain.  There are many who can't even imagine that kind of life.

Every day, do we take for granted the "normal" things in our lives?  Or can we take a moment to remember how blessed we are, and to thank the gracious God who has given us those gifts. 

If you have a home, you are blessed. 
If you are struggling with finances, you are still blessed.
If you think feeding your family is expensive, you are feeding them, you are blessed.
If your have a toothbrush, a plate, a cup, a mirror, a brush, a pair of socks, you are blessed.

Have you ever stared into the pantry and wondered what to make for dinner?  I have.  Have you ever noticed how much food is in there, and yet you still say "There's nothing to make for dinner"?  We are so incredibly blessed.  How do I know I can include YOU in this?  Becuase you are sitting at a computer reading it.  If you can do that, you are blessed.

We are rich beyond belief when we compare ourselves to those who go without what we would consider basic necessities each and every day.  Our homes are mansions, our cars are chariots, our food is lavish, our clothing like that of royalty.  When you look at your life that way, chores become a gift. 

We are blessed to be given the opportunity to care for these things we have been given.  Fold those clothes with honor and delight.  Make that shower sparkle, no matter it's size or the materials it is made from, it is an amazing gift that you have been blessed with.  Tuck in those sheets and make those beds with a song in your heart for you are blessed that at night you can lay on a mattress, pull those blankets up over your body and feel safe, warm and blessed.

Thank you Lord Jesus for all your precious gifts.  Help us to always remember to be thankful for those things that we have become the norm for us.  Help us to see that even our very basic items are such a huge gift, from You.

"He who is generous will be blessed..." ~ Proverbs 22:9a

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Mid January Mish Mash...

Hello again! :)

Here we are almost mid-January, and SOME progress has been made with my "re-ogranization" and clean-up efforts...not much, but some. :)

After searching online for pre-made "Housecleaning Checklists"...I combined, clipped, cut, added and customized one for my home and our needs.  Now, ... to start using it. :)

I did manage to do a wee bit of "decluttering".  This is after just a TINY bit of cleaning's truly amazing how much "stuff" we have that we  ~ A.  don't use, B. don't need, and C. don't even know we have!!!

 I re-organized the hall closet.  Happy.

Look, I can cross something off the list I posted in my last blog post!  Yee-haw!!!!  :)

*Do SOMETHING about that coffee table that is too big for your living room!

I found this on Craigslist.  I've been looking for a round coffe table seems.  I didn't want it too big, or too small. Nothing modern, had to be REAL wood, and wanted it to have some sort of pretty design element.  This was a dark cherry stain when I got it.  I sanded it down, gave it several coats of an antique white paint and sanded away some areas for an "aged" look.  I LOVE it.  It's just what I wanted and now I have more space in that room! Yea!

I found the mirrors I want for our to paint them, and the dresser.  As you can see, I also found some cute Christmas gift tags on clearance.

I found these windows....relatively cheap.  I want to use them in my bedroom, I'm not exactly sure how or where, but I have a few ideas jumping around in my noggin.

My sweet hubby bought us passes to Busch Gardens for Christmas!  AND tickets to go see Mark Lowry, one of our favorite Comedians...the man is just funny...and can SING!  Wow. 

Soooo, in order to take our RV on a trip, we have been busy fixing it...remember the fire?  Yup.  We have replaced the carpet, made a new couch cover, refinished the burned wood, and now I am in the process of repairing the seats.  I have NEVER done this before...yikes. 
We literally took the "skin" off the drivers and passenger seats and I am replacing the burnt pieces.

I took about 750 thousand photos of every detail as I took it apart...yet STILL managed to sew it back together wrong...frustrating myself beyond belief.  Then after much sweat, furrowed brows, confusion and some tears, in a flash I realized my mistake.  Ahhhh, relief.  I am now on the road to recovery, lol.

Amidst this, I am making new curtains for my bedroom, hemming pants...and, uh...working on that quilt...still.

...and altering this dress.  OY!

My sweet friend is pregnant.  She was not so big when we fitted it, and I left some room for comfort.  I altered it.  She came back and BAM, that baby GREW!!!!  Now what?  No worries Jessica....Ms. Kathy WILL make it work.  So, I am going to pour Miracle Grow on it and see what happens.  Kidding!!! (just in case she's reading this).  Some sort of magic will happen and I'll let you know what it is when I figure it out.

Last night we had a light dinner, Potato Pancakes and steamed broccoli.  The entire house smelled so good after making that.  Oh yum.

How do you eat your Potato Pancakes?  My sister eats hers with applesauce or sour cream.  I like them just plain, or with a dab of ketchup.  Do you make them?  They are easy and sooooo delicious!  Shred 2 peeled potatoes, shred a small onion, mix them together and squeeze them a few times with paper towels to get out the moisture.  Add 1 egg, 1 Tbsp. flour, a little salt, pepper and garlic powder, stir it up.  Drop 4 blogs in a thin layer of hot olive oil, flatten with a spatula to make "pancakes"...fry until golden brown on both sides.  Set on paper towlels to drain.  EAT! :)

Today I am making my Rosemary Olive Oil bread...yum.  I have decided to make a double batch and share with my neighbors.  Here it is sponging overnight....night night dough bowls ~ sleep tight!

Our baby boy is still off fighting bad guys in Afghanistan.  Mom says "COME HOME NOW!"...

I wonder if he heard me?  *sigh*

He'll be back at the end of February.  This makes a Momma's heart happy.

Just for fun,....isn't she adorable?  :)

"Mom, I see a squirrell!"

"I'm gonna get it!"

"Um, where is it?  What did you do with it?"

"Is the squirrell coming back?"

And because it's always best to close on the happiest note...there is my man.  Have I ever told you how much I absolutely love my husband?  He's the best.  He's godly, smart, strong, loving, chivalrous, and funny, ... very, very funny. 

I love him!!!!!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Well, here it is 2011.  As usual, the years fly by faster the older I get.  I see my fitness goals becoming more and more "important" as the years go by.  If I don't do it NOW, it may never happen (goes through my mind often enough), LOL.

I've decided to take some time this first week of January to do some "cleanin' out". 

The serving dishes I bought because I just HAD to have them, but stored away and never used...time to get out!

The dress I bought at the thrift store "just in case" I ever had a reason to wear something like that...time to send it back to the thrift store!  When the time comes, I'll buy one 2 days before the event!

Shoes,..oy.  I garden, I exercise, I grocery shop, I got to church.  I don't need 20 pairs of shoes...well, actually, I don't HAVE 20 pairs of shoes, but I don't need 15 pair either! LOL...

And fabric?  I crave buying new fabric.  I see fabric that I just WANT...but I am determined to craft things out of at least HALF the fabric I already have before I go buying more!  So, hmmm, maybe it's time to get crackin' and open up an Etsy shop...I have a LOT of ideas, I love to make things...we'll see.

You get the picture, right?  I'm going to go room by room and take out a few things, clear up some shelf space, clear up some closet space, clear up some brain space.  It feels good.

THEN, I'll begin on the 40 million projects that I've been threatening to start for the last 12 months...

*paint and "age" my dining table and chairs
*paint and "age" my buffet
*redesign our TV stand
*cover that chair in the living room...ugh!  Cover it already Kathy!!!!
*Do SOMETHING about that coffee table that is too big for your living room!
*refinish the bedroom dresser
*replace the mirror in the bedroom...which means painting 2 new mirrors
*move some curtains around in the house to spice things up and make things look new and fresh
*lighten the colors in the bedroom
*oh...finish that quilt...oh, and that other one I started too...*sigh*

You get the picture here too?  This year I need to do things...really, I don't wanna wait months to do them, I just want to get started now and not quit till it's all done.  Will it happen?  I dunno.  Will I attempt it, sure, for a time at least. :)

Oh, yeah, and I want to run a race.  Guess I'd better start running again, eh? :)

What will you do this January to start the year off fresh?  I'm not asking about resolutions, because I gave those up YEARS ago!  Just things that need to be done, loose ends that need to be snugged up.  What are you January plans?

Happy New Year my friends, but most importantly...

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding. 
In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight. 
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
Fear the Lord and turn away fromevil. 
 It will be healing to your body
And refreshment to your bones." 

Proverbs 3:5-8