Showing posts from 2015

The New Grandbaby!!

So there we were,  3/4 of our journey competed....500 miles yet to go  on our trip to New Mexico to see our daughter and son in law and forth coming baby, when, 5:00 in the morning, we got a call....yes, Anna was in labor!  Straightaway we hopped in the suburban and drove, drove, drove.....   arriving 40 minutes after the newest grand baby was born!  
  I was allowed into the birthing room right away to meet this newest blessing,  help wash her, measure her, and cut the cord.   Scott was perfectly at ease with the sweet little bundle,  ...I was impressed. 

Mary Joy  made her way safely into the world that Monday,  surprising us all at 8 lbs 2 oz  and having plenty of dark hair, which was a great relief and delight to her mama.
 Needless to say, we all fell completely head over heels for this little girl.
Oh, My!!  What a darling!!!
I cannot possibly look upon these pictures without a little squeal escaping- she is SO PRECIOUS!!!

With eyes of wonder,  all of the family stared and stared …

Traveling To New Mexico

Vacation time has come and we have planned for months now to pack 9 of us in our 9 passenger suburban and travel 1500 miles to see our newest grand child, along with our daughter and son in law, of course. At he time we left Idaho, the baby had not been born...that story is for another post.

So, we packed VERY lightly for our two week trek, and hoped for the best.  Since we lost our 15 passenger van, this is our first road trip with all of us, everything would be cooking in a crock pot while driving...there just isn't room. No big cooler with lots of homemade yummies for our tummies...there just isn't room.  No plethora of games, books, pillows, and blankets...there just isn't room.

So......what we did do is....
1. Pack a small cooler with lunch meat, cheese, mayo and mustard.  And another box with bread and store bought snacks to be given out in between rest stops. We choose fruit snacks, goldfish crackers, granola bars, and trail mix.  These were all XL …

Our 4 Daughters

Our  4 daughters are a vast range of age,  and are all doing a wide  variety of activities. 
 Here they are:
Daughter #1 isoursweetAnna, She is our second born child,
 now 21, and married to a wonderful godly man.   They live in New Mexico, which is very sad for me,
but I am learning to let go and be content...
it hasn't been easy...even though I am so so happy for her!!

  Anna is in that blessed and radiant state of full bloom,
carrying our grandbaby (their first!) whom we hope to meet very soon....  I am sooo excited to meet this prayed-for little one!!!

Our third born, the lovelyRose, is just home from three weeks in Africa!   I sure missed her, and am so very glad to have her home again... but my intuition tells me it won't be for long... Rose is growing up...and Africa is very much a part of her.   She is a beautiful young lady inside and out.

Then there is miss Bethany, (9 years old, child #7)  who just finished her first ballet class, loved every minute of it,  and now…

Inspiration From The Front Porch

Come sit awhile...  the weather is so nice and the front porch beckons.

I am fascinated with porches.   I do believe that any home would be more homey with a front porch. Maybe that is my southern roots coming out. To me, it really doesn't matter what style a porch is, I love them all.
Over the weekend we cleaned up and put together this year's summer porch.   It was an exciting event and all the children were eager to help sweep, mop,  put wintery things away and bring out the season's furnishings.
As we were sitting out this first morning on the porch,  (having moved our school work outdoors) I was amused to find that Bethany had made lemonade.   I guess she just naturally thought:  porch = lemonade. (chuckle)

 Our large front porch certainly is a significant part of our home,  and we spend a great many hours there spring, summer and fall.   When we have church fellowship out here, the house overflows, (63 for dinner last Sunday!)  and the porch is a welcome extra room.
I …

Home Schooling: More Than the Three R's

How do you do it?   My you sure have your hands full!  I could never do that!   These are all things I have heard countless times from friends and strangers  when they find out we have 9 children that we have home schooled. Here is my answer.   Here is how do I do it.  Here is my counsel to anyone thinking of homeschooling  or discouraged in their home schooling adventures.
Home Schooling is something I am passionate about.   Raising children is something I am passionate about.   Because I am passionate about these things, I love to talk about them.  We have been home schooling for 20 years now, and we have made mistakes.   We have also learned a whole lot and made progress, although,  there are those days when I can't see it.   Thankfully, those days end and new ones arise and with them hope  that this day will be different,  perhaps even victorious. 
Over the years, I have come to a few conclusions about successful homeschooling... and these conclusions arrived from trial and erro…

Venison Steak For Dinner

 Just saying the word makes my mouth water.   Venison is our favorite meat, and happens to be the meat we fairly live off of. 
 It always perplexes me when folks get a deer, then go to the work of butchering it, then it sits in the freezer all winter while they buy meat at the store to feed their family.   We LOVE venison!   Our family brings in 5 or 6 deer a season,  keeping us in meat so that we may eat venison three times a week, rarely having beef. After living this way for years and years our kids think beef is weird.   They say it has a funny taste to it. 
Although I interchange  ground venison for ground beef in any recipe, (and guests never know)  there are a few special recipes in which we especially love our venison.   On the top of the list is something we call "Schaffer Steak".  
You see, years ago Mr and Mrs Schaffer came over to our house one night,  bringing dinner in a great big covered dish.   This was his steak recipe, served over mashed …

From Idaho to Africa!

Well, she's gone.   Our dear Rose and her sweet friend, Brenna are in route as I write.   From Idaho, to Seattle, to Amsterdam, to Entebbe, to Jinja.   It is about a 25 hour plane trip to Uganda, Africa where they will spend the next three weeks  ministering with some very dear folks, Paul and Pam Hunter of Next Generation ministries.   I'm stealing some photos fromRose's blog....but better yet,  I hope you wander your way over there and see for yourself what God is doing  in this young ladies heart!   I am so excited for Rose and Brenna, but I am going to miss Rose dearly!  She is such a vibrant soul...I will be missing all the laughs and great talks,   the singing together and being together.

Meanwhile, I am preparing for our annual women's retreat,  where I will be sharing the weekend with around 30 other ladies, and,  I will be speaking for two of the four sessions.   You know, the great thing about preparing a lesson to share, is that in the preparation,  God doe…

The Necessity of Afternoon Tea

"Winter is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth,  for the touch of a friendly hand and for a talk beside the fire:  it is the time for home." - Dame Edith Sitwell

I like this quote, but I think I could replace "winter" with "teatime."

Teatime is the time for comfort, for good food and warmth,
for the touch of a friendly hand and for talk beside the fire;
 it is the time for home.

 Yes, that suits just fine.

My favorite part of the  day comes around 2:30 every afternoon.   It is that of tea time at our home.   The children most likely have been rambling about the woods,  and are glad for a warming cup of goodness,  followed by some sort of treat to keep the famished over until dinner.

This tradition, I unabashedly admit,  I stole from my dear friend, Enola Gay,  whose home life has inspired me so much over the years we have been friends. 

 Tea time is more for the soul than the goodies,  although goodies are always appreciated,
like these light Hon…

Life at the Lodge Last Week

Last week went by in a is why:

The new goat babies are here... Marshall and Moses joined little Mabel in the goat pen last week,  They are just her size, only she is two weeks older.   Rose had to play midwife and pull both of these babies,  who are doing very well along with their mama.  

Aren't they adorable??   We will be rich in goat milk in a few short weeks.
Besides playing and gentling these cuties, we have been doing some big cooking.
I enjoy cooking and hospitality.   Here is one way that I serve in the church body with these gifts:
Every Wednesday, I cook dinner for about 30 people  who come to our "Family Fellowship" night at the church.   Last week, we ( myself and with the children's help)  oven fried 20 lbs of chicken,
according to my dear friend, Enola Gay's recipe, and oh, was it good!!!   Enola is a very good cook who has her own cookbook.  I highly recommend it.   We served the chicken with baked potatoes, and,
having bought the chi…

Birthday Blessings

Benjamin Creed

March is a big birthday month in our family.   I counted six birthdays in the extended family. After putting up the crepe paper, balloons and birthday banner,  we started fixing pizzas for the 20 some guests, mostly family.   Rose and Joe are the main pizza chefs.   Joe prepared his specialty:  BBQ chicken pizza,  Rose made the Pepperoni, and we all worked on the Jalapeno Popper Pizza,  which we copied from Anna, who had just tried it the week before with great success.

 When the food was ready,  Daddy prayed a special blessing on the birthday boy, Ben, who is turning 11 years old.

 After dinner-- cake, of course...except our boy wanted banana splits instead,  so we put his candles in his ice cream.   He was quite pleased with it.

Long ago we started a tradition of giving the same gifts to each boy at a certain age.   This has worked very well...and the children look forward  to the day they will be old enough to get  ______, as if it has become a right of passage.  It…