Friday, August 31, 2007

Work Quote

Far and away the best prize that life offers is
the chance to work hard at work worth doing.

- Theodore Roosevelt Labor Day speech,
Sept. 7, 1903, Syracuse, New York.

(T. Roosevelt is one of our favorite men of all time.)

Frugal Friday- Free Newsletter

P. Allen Smith is a wonderful, free gardening newsletter, full of tips, reminders and recipes.

This week he has articles about drying flowers, what to look for when buying mums, how to make homemade sorbet, and more.

For more Frugal Friday Tips go to Biblical Womanhood.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Sausage Bread

This is a great dish that I learned from Jeff's mom and grandfather.
I only make it on special occasions,
and today's special occasion is my wonderful husband's 44th birthday!
(44???is that right? Can we possibly be getting that old?)

Sausage Bread
Makes 2 loaves

1 pound of sweet or hot Italian Sausage
1 pound of Mozzarella Cheese
2 pizza or bread dough
Italian Seasoning
Optional: 1 onion, 1 pepper, mushrooms, black olives

Use Italian Sausage.
If you cannot get it in bulk, use the links,
just slide the sausage out of the casing.
Brown it on medium heat, breaking it up into small pieces.
When it gets almost finished,
add a chopped onion, bell pepper and Italian Seasoning.
You can also add mushrooms.
You will roll your pizza dough (homemade or store bought) out,
you can also use a can of French bread, on a lightly oiled baking pan or counter top.
Sprinkle your meat mixture evenly on the dough.
I also added some black olives.
Add mozzarella cheese on top of the meat mixture.
You can use shredded, I just thinly sliced it here
(cheaper to buy it as a block, not shredded).
Roll it up like a jellyroll.
Bake on a baking pan that has been oiled and sprinkled with a little cornmeal
on 350 for about 20-30 minutes until golden brown on top.
As soon as it comes out of the oven wipe a little butter on it, this will keep the top soft.
Serve with a fresh green salad,
to give this meal some nutritional value! ;o)
This is also good with a pasta dish.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Entrepreneur Days


We spent three days in Atlanta, Georgia at this year's Entrepreneur Days, hosted by Rhea Perry of Educating for Success. Our brains are on overload. After we got home Jeff and I went straight to bed (7 pm). lol I had registered for Joshua and I to go, but Josh opted out, so Olivia was going to take his place, because Jeff HATES sitting all day (and in this case all evening too)! BUT the day before we left Jeff said HE was going to be the one in the seminars. YHEAAAAA!!! He was so eager and willing. We both know that we need to change some things. The last two years of being self-employed have been great, yet incredibly hard. Neither of us is afraid to work, but when we feel like that is all you do and you are just keeping your head above water, you know something needs to change without compromising your convictions.

The topics at the conference covered a WIDE rage of possible directions, but mostly we were encouraged to continue to not give up the dream. The dream of not working at a 'go nowhere, do nothing' job. We want to work as a family. We want enough wealth to be able to GIVE MORE to those that are in need, we want to be able to take care of our parents as they are aging. We do have a larger goal, but we are silent about that right now, because we just need to pray and wait to see what the Lord wants.

Ask yourself, if you were a multi-millionaire,
what would you be doing?

It so neat, because after one of the lectures where this question was presented, I asked Jeff his was the same as mine :o) except mine was on a much bigger scale! Neither of our vision has to do with laying on a beach or buying more things! :o)

The next week or so I will post come quotes and ideas (vision) from our notes. One thing that has already been proven that we were reminded of at the Conference, is "When ever you make up your mind to take chances and that you are going to make a difference....BE READY because Satan will want to stop you." I know this to be painfully true! ugh! BUT I am trying to take every thought captive. :o)

Because we could only afford to pay for two people to go to the seminars, the girls stayed in the Sheraton Hotel (the conference was in the same place), including a nice pool and jacuzzi!!! Emma actually got to babysit for another couple there that had their 9 year old along, so that worked out nicely for her. :o) $$$ The girls were happy to live a few days with luxury. :o)

Thursday, August 23, 2007

When good parenting becomes a crime

Here is another good article from Judge Moore. It is worth reading the whole thing HERE.

Parents of homeschooling families, many of whom are Christian, are being arrested and their children forcibly removed to public schools and foster homes because Germany claims its "obligation to provide for education" includes the exclusive right to produce "responsible citizens who participate in a democratic and pluralistic society" – a category that apparently excludes homeschoolers. The European Court of Human Rights gave its stamp of approval last year to this recent tyranny by the German government.

Meanwhile here in the USA:

And in many states there are increasing attempts to regulate and restrict the growing trend of homeschooling, which seems to pose a threat to proponents of government-monopolized education.


Our Western legal heritage has always recognized that the law of nature and nature's God has given parents – and not the state – the authority to control the education and discipline of their children. Any government usurpation of that family jurisdiction is an unwarranted abuse of power that runs contrary to historical, legal and biblical precepts.


The duty to provide an education for one's child springs directly from the biblical requirement to "[t]rain up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." In Deuteronomy 6:7, we are taught the necessity of teaching God's law "diligently unto thy children," and in Ephesians 6:4 to "bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord."


If we allow the state to erode parental authority over discipline and education, we will reap, among other things, higher crime and even lower morality in the next generation. Abandoning God's unchanging law is a sure way to really see the times "a-changin'," but not for the better.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Keeping House~ Part Two

I want to post some quotes form the book Keeping House, but this is such a good book that it is hard to pick out just a few passages. It really is worth the read.

Chapter 1
What's Christian About Housework?

pg 2-3
People need to eat, to sleep, to have clothes to wear; they need a place to read, a place to play, a place into which to welcome guest from which to go forth into the world. These are the needs that housework exist to meet.

Jesus had alot to say about feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, and sheltering the homeless. These Christian duties begin at home. It is when these duties are done in our homes it enables the rest of the family to go out and to meet the needs of others.

pg 4-5
Domesticity, we are to believe, is a leisure activity, one that results in elaborate, spotless perfection while requiring nothing of us but that we purchase a few brand-name products or publications.

Magazine racks are full of publications to inspire to have beautiful rooms, the home make over shows are on every network, but they don't address the HEART of a home. Making a home is not something you do as an extreme makeover on a weekend. It takes working at it day in and day out. pg 7 ...housework may be mundane, but it is not simple!

pg 5-6
Sociologist, Arkin Hochschild, documents the increasing prevalence of homes in which every adult member of the household works full time for pay outside the home and no one bears explicit, dedicated responsibility- even part time- for task inside the home. The result, she says, is homes of chaotic and unstructured that all the adults in the household would rather be at work than at home. After all, at work people know what their jobs are and can take a break when they are done; at home all anyone knows is that it is a mess waiting for someone to clean it up.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Giving Praise

We have so much to be thankful for, and as I try to prepare my heart for worship tomorrow I am trying to focus on God's blessings. Sad how we pray so earnestly for things, then spend so little time praising...or maybe that is just me? How often do we enjoy hearing our children say 'I love you', without asking for something in return?!

Sunday morning our Prodigal came home RETENTIVE! He shed many tears and then asked each one of us, one at a time, for forgivness. When he came to our door knocking, his first words to me were, "I want to go to church today!", then he burst into tears.

He was met at church by the Church (the Body of Christ), with open arms and alot of love. It was beautiful to see so many people show love to a one who has been a rebel...a royal jerk! (I can say that because I am his MOM) ;o)

He has moved back home and we are working on things. I never dreamed that it would be so hard to parent 'adults'. It is a tough balance trying to parent (guide) and letting them walk and fall all on their own.

But tonight I am thanking God for His mercy, because He is the ONLY ONE that can turn hearts!

Other things to be thankful for:

Jeff got some work lined up (halleluia!)
Jeff, Josh and the rest of the Fire Dept. were able to fight 2 big fires without getting hurt!
Our Sewing Party went off smoothly, 32 dresses made! whoo hoo!
Car insurance issue resolved, I think...
Olivia is leaning alot of new CHALLENGING things with her new piano teacher.
Emma is showing great improvement in many of her homemaking skills.
We were able to make plans to go to Atlanta to the Entrepreneurs Conference.

There are many other things, but I'll talk to the Lord about that now...

Have a blessed Lord's Day, focus on Him, because everything else is meaningless!

Friday, August 17, 2007

Frugal Friday

Today's Frugal Friday (hosted by Biblical Womanhood) tip is a Newsletter put out by my very dear friend Kelly at Hearts For Family.

It's FREE just sign up. This mom to #7 in just s few weeks knows all about frugality first hand! You too can glean from her wealth of wisdom.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Labor of Love

It is 12:30 am, my two favorite men are out fighting another fire. We are in a severe drought here and we've had record breaking temperatures which includes temps over 100 for the last 10 (?I've lost count) days.

My husband and son work in the heat and it takes a toll on them. Today after working all day they were called out to a field fire with structures in danger. This was caused by road crews mowing the sides of the roads, they hit some stones, which caused sparks and fire. Within 15 minutes 45 acres were burnt.

I don't know how in the world these guys do what they do. Combine their protective fire gear (which is so heavy) with the heat from a fire and air temperatures being over 100 degrees it has got to be incredibly hard to do their volunteer job.

This fire came VERY close to a home. After Jeff and Josh got home and sat down with exhaustion, Josh said, "At least we didn't loose any homes." After fighting that fire for 5-6 hours they took their baths and went to bed. At midnight the tones go off again, the fire has rekindled and out of control. As my guys were rushing to get their selves together another tone went off stating that the fire had taken on a 2 story residence. This area is farm land and homes. I sit here praying for those that could loose home and this year's income. I pray for the safety of MY guys and the rest of the department. Jeff took two allergy tablets a few hours ago, which knock him out, it HAS to be a labor of love to push a person to such physical limits. A love for people.

Please pray that the Lord will see fit to bring this horrible drought to an end and that He would also give us a break with the temperatures. May we all remember Who is in control! It is times likes these that we begin to realize just how much we take for granted.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Because I Could!

Several ladies at our church are reading Keeping House, The Litany of Everyday Life, by Margaret Peterson. I have really enjoyed it so far and thought I'd post some of her thoughts.

In the Preface she tells how she was able to meet the needs of a friend as her newborn baby spent 3 months in the hospital dying. This friend had a large supportive church but few were continuously available because of children and/or jobs.

Mrs. Peterson states:
I realized that to a large degree,
I did it because I could.

I think this is a very key issue! She was available to minister, she could! First, we all have seasons. When the childless (or grown child) season is upon us our first thought should not be to fill that time with a job or 'I'm free to be me'. Titus 2 tells us that we are to be keepers AT home, and as older women we are to be teaching the younger women. After meeting the needs of our husband and home, our time and efforts could be filled with meeting the needs of so many around us.

...time deliberately set aside for keeping house is never just about
"making a home for my family."
Of course housework is about making a home,
but a Christian home, properly understood,
is never just for one's own family.
A Christian home overflows its boundaries;
it is an output of the Kingdom of God,
where the hungry are fed and the naked are clothed
and there is room enough for everyone.
Keeping home can be a very mundane activity....

But at the very same time,
housekeeping is about practicing sacred disciplines
and creating a sacred space,
for the sake of Christ as we encounter him
in our fellow household members and in
neighbors, strangers, and guest.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Sewing Party Day!

TWENTY moms and daughters
gathered together to sew little dresses
for the children of
Acres of Hope Orphanage.
We met at the Boyd's home.
This family most definitely has the gift of hospitality.

Some ironed...

some cut...

some pinned...

some sewed...

(most of the daughters pictured)
ALL gave!

We were able to get 32 dresses done and
we plan on meeting another day to make shorts for the little boys.

Not pictured are all of the boys and little ones
that stayed behind the scenes so we could get our 'work' done.
THANK YOU Stephen, Michael, and Tucker!!!

Saturday, August 11, 2007


We've had a pretty productive day. Olivia and one of her friends, Ana, made an apple pie with a lattice top...I didn't get a picture of that before Ana took it home.

Tonight Emma made some cupcakes, iced them,
added crushed Butterfingers and gummy worms.
She is taking these to share at church tomorrow.

I had a cake order so we were able to share a batch of icing.
This icing is made with High Ratio Shortening and it is WONDERFUL!
It has a very light texture, almost like whipping cream.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Orphanage Donations

I've had a few people ask me of how they can help with our sewing party. I'd like to have everything together by the end of this month to go to Liberia with my friend that is traveling there hopefully in September.

Ways you can help:

Pray for the children and that relationship with the government be cooperative.

Simple, lightweight, easy to care for sun dresses, shorts and T-shirts (for boys and girls)


(suggestions from the orphanage)
-Tylenol, liquid and tablets
-Infant and children's vitamins
-Pedialite packets (little individual serving pouches you add to water).
We need a LOT of these to help battle dehydration caused by malaria and diarrhea.
-Cloth diapers
-Crib sheets
-Twin sheets
-Bottle nipples stages 1 to 3
-2 or more collapsible infant seats
-Infant and children's clothes, size preemie to 8. Boy and girl items
needed. Sun dresses preferred for girls, shorts and T's for boys (plus
socks and underwear for both).
-All items needed for size 2 and under (in special need of socks now
due to the rainy season.)
-We do use pajamas as well and it would be nice to have more sets.
You can mail these to me by the end of the August.

Kathy Brodock
168 Lakeshore Cir
Highland Lake, Al 35121

Thank you!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sewing Party!

We are having a SEWING PARTY to make sun dresses and shorts for an orphanage in Liberia that a friend of ours is adopting from. Today I am trying to get the patterns cut out and make a few examples. I plan on having it set up as an assembly line so we should be able to get quite a bit done! Right now I have about 20 moms and daughters signed up to help...should be LOTS of fun! Not only will we be able to help the orphans as God commands us to, but we'll be brushing up on sewing skills with our daughters!

My friend Robin posted some pictures of the area that her new little one, JT, will be coming from on her blog. When you start feeling sorry for yourself and think of how you are struggling, look at those pictures and then you will realize just how RICH you are! And the reason our country is so RICH in everything is because of God leading and blessings our forefathers who were willing to be bold and obedient to the Lord, no matter what the cost. So many gave their blood and life for this country and now their descendants sit back and enjoy the rewards. They are ignorant of the Truth (spiritually and historically), and what is worse they don't want the knowledge, because then they too would have to be responsible. Most Americans are complacent and only pursue material gain and comfort at all cost.

I best stop now before I get on too big of a rant. May God shake this country from it's slumber and raise up Godly men and women to restore us to our foundation!

Monday, August 6, 2007

Quilted Bible Cover

Turn my eyes away from worthless things;
preserve my life according to your word.
Psalm 119:37


It is so easy for me to spend my day doing things that really don't amount to a hill of beans, and then neglect the things that do make a difference. The quickest way to get distracted is to ignore God's Word.

Picture above:
Last year Olivia, Emma and I took a watercolor quilting class. Each of us made a wall hanging of a cross. Olivia gave hers to Grandma, I have Emma's hanging in the sewing room and then I used mine to make a cover for my Bible.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Home Sweet Home Alabama

ahhhhh...finally home from our trip, tired and thankful. I think traveling does so much to bring life into perspective.

We enjoyed our time with family and we are ALWAYS so torn between absolutely loving where we live now and missing our family. We live in a wonderful, conservative, home school friendly, mild weathered area. We have a church that some people dream of being near and friends that are dear to us. When we travel to New York I feel like a fish out of water because we are so different, NOT BETTER, but different. Yet, as we live here in the south we long for family and our northern heritage (NOT Yankee, but northern). When I am at my Grandma's house I am so at peace there, it is where I spent most of my childhood and I have so many happy memories there. I lived there when I had our first 2 children. We have been here in the south for almost 19 years, where we birthed our last 2 children, we love it, but the family is missing. Sometimes I view it as perhaps the Pilgrims did, moving to a new land hoping for the future generations to have a better life. Where we now live is our children's heritage, it is THEIR stomping ground, their memories, their childhood...

So now we're HOME, ready to get back to our daily routine. Today as we drove the last 6 hours of the 20 hour journey I began to make my list of projects that needed doing and a 'school' schedule.

Olivia has declared that she refuses to move north of the Mason Dixon Line. LOL...

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

On Vacation!

We are enjoying our vacation here in upstate New York. The weather is nice and we are having a ball with our family. It really makes you realize just how much you miss when you are so far away from everyone. The 'kids' are becoming adults and the older folks becoming weaker and fragile really makes you think about how precious life is. Since we were last here (2 years ago)one of my favorite aunts died. It seems so strange not going to visit her.
Well I just wanted to drop a little note and say hi to everyone. I found a quilt shop that has over 7000 bolts of 100% cotton fabric, so Olivia and I are off to explore that today...we invited everyone to go with us but they did not have the same enthusiasm as we do. ???? why??? :o) They don't know what they are missing!