Thursday, April 30, 2009

God is in Control - Part 2

I started talking about how I've seen God working in my life, showing me that he is control of all. His timing is perfect even if it seems a bit off to me. Here you can read the first part. Today, I'm going to talk about another time that God showed me clearly that he would take care of things.

Soon after we took our pastorate, we began looking for a place to live. Renting, at that time, would have cost more than buying an inexpensive we decided to buy. As we began looking in our price range, we realized we weren't going to be able to get a very nice house. They all needed a lot of work. Now, I have the best husband in the world...but a handyman he is not!! There were houses with sloped floors, a foot of water in the basement, and mold. We decided to just keep looking.

The week after baby #3 was born we looked at two more houses. The first was impractical (there was really only one real bedroom) and the other was perfect, but out of our price range. Even though we liked house #2, we kept looking. Several weeks later we went back to look at it again. They had reduced the price! We were very close to being able to buy it. We checked with the bank...and we got the extra money!

This house was in great shape and needed no work. It's layout was perfect. Even though it's only 1200 sq. ft., the rooms are all spacious. It's in a really nice neighborhood. It even had a fenced in yard with a swingset for the kids (who were 3, 1, and NB at the time). It really was perfect for us.

Once again God provided us with not just what we needed, but what we wanted. He worked everything out...but in his own timing. This house has been perfect for our family. It has been a great place to live. It also has ended up being very inexpensive. It heats very well, has had very little upkeep, and extremely low taxes. God knew just where we needed to be and worked it out.

Potato Patties

Have you ever had leftover mashed potatoes, and weren't quite sure what to do with them? Potato patties (sometimes called pancakes) are a great way to use up those leftover mashed potatoes. These are comfort food for me. My mom used to make them when I was a girl, and I love them!

Here's how I make them:

Take your leftover mashed potatoes and add a couple eggs. Sometimes I use one egg, sometimes depends on how many potatoes I have. This time I used two.

Mix the eggs in. Then add some flour...again I just eyeball it. I added about 1/4 cup of flour this time. Also, season with salt and pepper. If your mashed potatoes are well seasoned, then you don't need much (if any).

Mix it well. It will look like this:

Heat oil in a pan. When it is hot, drop the mashed potato mixture into the pan by the spoonful.

Fry for a couple of minutes until nicely browned. Then flip and fry on the other side for a couple more minutes. You may want to drain on paper towels. And, Yes, I could use some new frying pans!!

I like to eat mine with pork and beans (sweetened with some brown sugar). My husband and kids like them with ketchup. I've heard of people actually eating them with syrup like pancakes. Anyway you eat them, they make a tasty lunch! It's a simple recipe that's difficult to mess up (unless you burn them!). I got 10 and 1/2 patties from my bowl of mashed potatoes.

This is Josiah's plate and he had already taken a bite out of his!

You Capture - Joy

This weeks You Capture assignment at I should be folding Laundry was Joy. Last weekend was beautiful, so I was able to catch the girls joyfully playing outside.

Jada and Rachel playing.

Rachel laughing.

Saturday was my nephews' birthday party. Here is my nephew Zeke...excited about his presents. I think he exudes joy! He is very difficult to photograph with a smile, so even though it isn't the best picture, I was super excited to get this shot.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

In His Word Wednesday

your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.

Zephaniah 3:17

The thought of God taking great delight in me and rejoicing over me with singing is unbelievable.
Thank you God for your love and salvation!

Visit Megan at Focusing on the Bible, Family, and the Great Deals for more encouragement in God's Word.

Wordless Wednesday

Go check out more Wordless Wednesday's.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

God is in Control - Part 1

I think those of us who are believers believe that God is in control and His ways are best. But, I think sometimes in the nitty gritty details of life we somehow forget. We forget to look to God as the supplier of all our needs. We think we can take care of things ourselves. I can think of three distinct circumstances in my life where God was shouting at me, "I will take care of things. My timing is perfect." I think I'll share each one over the next several days. Maybe my story will encourage you to look to your own life and see where God has worked.

When Aaron graduated from Seminary, we thought he would have a job right away. He had won most of the awards the seminary gives out. He had professors reccommending him at churches where they were greatly respected. We started looking months before graduation. We had been living in my parents basement for two years. We were ready to get out (and they were ready for us to leave!). We had great expectations of being out weeks within graduation.

Graduation came around and we hadn't heard back from any churches. We were in a holding pattern, waiting for a church to come along. We were finding that most churches wanted someone older and with experience. Finally, a church called us to candidate. We drove the five or six hours to the church and spent the weekend. We drove home very discouraged. Should you take a pastorate just to have a job...knowing it wasn't a good fit? We decided not. It was definitely not a good fit for we were back at square one.

We were frustrated and feeling a little desperate. Then we learned of a small church just miles from the church we attended. Aaron sent his resume, and we heard back right away. They asked us to come and candidate for the whole month of August. We went and liked the church...and they liked us. We were called as their pastors. The church was smaller than we expected. We also thought we would move a little farther away. When we were thinking of where we would end up this wasn't what we had planned. But, it was definitely where God wanted (and still wants) us.

We went away the last weekend before we started at the new church. When we got back there was a message on our answering machine from a church in West Virginia. Aaron was the choice the search committee had made, and they wanted us to candidate. It had been months and months since we sent anything to this church. I wondered why God would have another church call then. It was a much larger church. It was far from home (making it seem a little more adventurous). It was also part of the fellowship that Aaron had grown up in. Aaron called them back and let them know we already accepted a position.

Why would that church call the week after we had accepted our pastorate? I think it was God's way of letting us know that though Aaron could have gotten a job elsewhere...this was where he wanted us. It took away any doubts that we took this church just because we had no other options. He wanted us here and it was his plan all along.

To be continued......

Monday, April 27, 2009


I am thankful to have water pressure! Our water pressure has slowly been decreasing over the last several the point that we have had not much more than a trickle for the last several weeks. Turns out our well was just getting too old. Yesterday we were finally hooked up to city water (we decided to do this instead of a new well for two reasons...1) It was about a third less & 2) We will almost assuredly be annexed within the next few years and forced on city water).
Running water is a wonderful thing...and pressure behind it is even better! I'm going to have to pay attention for the next few days, though. The sink fills up very quickly now. I had time to do some cleaning up before the water was filled...but no more! I may overflow my sink!

Of course, now we have to actually pay for our water. Our town allows a certain amount of water for the base price, then charge for anything above. We decided to use our normal usage this month, and see if we go over. Then, if we need to change our habits...we will cut back. I'll let you know how our little experiment goes!

Please visit Heavenly Homemakers for more Gratituesday.

Caleb Reflecting on His Reflection

I let Caleb pick the reflection picture, but Aaron and I really liked this one, too.

I ♥ Faces - Reflection

This week at I Faces the theme is reflection. This was quite a challenge for me...but, that's why I enter these challenges! I'm trying to get better at my photography and to try things I normally wouldn't. Caleb was my model for this week. We experimented taking pictures in windows, the mirror inside, the car windows and final settled on the car mirror. We took lots of pictures and both really liked this one. There was one other one we liked...go here if you want to check it out.

Menu Plan Monday

Monday - Grilled Pork Chops, mashed potatoes, corn

Tuesday - Fettuccine Alfredo, Garlic Bread, Salad

Wednesday - Busy Day Beef Stew, Homemade Bread

Thursday - Cracker Chicken, Fried potatoes, Veggies

Friday - Out

Saturday - Pizza

Sunday - Roast, potatoes, carrots

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Photohunt - protection

This is a picture of my boys last summer playing football with their bike helmets on...cause you have to protect those noggins!!

To join in the photohunt go here.

SOOC Saturdays

This picture is of Josiah and Sarah. He was holding her and wanted my to get his picture. I snapped a few with him smiling for the camera, then he bent down to kiss her, and I caught this. So precious!

Go here to see more pictures straight out of the camera.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Loving My Husband Friday

Loving My Husband Friday is for taking the time to focus on the positives of marriage. A time to build up your marriage and your spouse. Focus on something you love about your husband, something he did to encourage you this week, or just a tip on how to keep your marriage strong. Let your husband know you're bragging on him...everyone loves praise and accolades. Try to spend the rest of your week focusing on all the great traits of your spouse...especially when your tempted to focus on the bad! And don't forget to pray for your husband and marriage as you write your post.

Add a link to your post to Mr. Linky. Then pray for the marriages of the others who post, and give each other a little encouragement to keep our marriages strong!

11 years ago today, Aaron and I went on our first date. We had been on a ministry puppet team together for 6 or 7 months. After puppet practice we would meet with a partner for prayer. When second semester rolled around my partner was no longer on the team, so I joined Aaron and his partner. I already had a crush on him before this, but I liked him even more after that.
He finally asked me out on a date. We went out to dinner at Dig's Diner (a local place in the town we went to college in). We both had breakfast for dinner...which is still a favorite around this house.

Then we went to see Annie. It was an O.K. show...but I had a great time because I was with Aaron.

Here is a picture the guys on his hall took before we went out. He borrowed some clothes from one of the guys. (He always wore T-shirts and khakis). You can't tell from this picture, but this shirt really brought the blue out in his eyes. He looked so great!!
So, that's how it all started. I'm so thankful for Aaron...he gets better and better every year.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Sarah Elizabeth - 6 weeks

Things I Love Thursdays - 'crib bumper thingy'

When my oldest was a baby my Mom bought this crib bumper from a discovery toys party. It has black, white and red images on one side, and colorful images with 'toys' in the other. I never used it as a bumper...we would put in on the floor for the baby to look at during play time. My Mom bought it for all three of us kids to use with the grandkids, so it got passed on to the next cousin. So, I didn't have it for all of my kids. Just a few weeks ago Genesa passed it back to us. Sarah loves looking at the images. Consequently, I love it!!

Here is Sarah staring intently:

Here's Caleb as a baby staring just as intently at the other side:

Go here fore more things people love.

You capture - Letters

This weeks You Capture assignment was letters. Here's what I found.

A box of magnetic letters:

My three year old playing with the letters:

I was going to go out and find my Grandfather-in-laws letters home from the war, but I didn't get around to getting them out. So instead I took a few pictures of "letters" my husband wrote when we were dating. Most of them are short notes written on whatever scrap he had right then...but I kept them all and put them in a scrapbook.
(We had gone to a murder mystery party the weekend before he wrote this...that's why he calls me a murderer...LOL).

Tell Me Thursday - Lovely Visitor

I just learned yesterday that there is a site to tell about your Wordless Wednesday post. I always try to keep my WW post truly wordless, but often wish I could tell the story behind it. Yesterday's photo was taken out my front window. Here's the story:

One morning this little guy showed up on the small tree outside my front window. I was feeding the baby, but I called all the kids out to see him. Josiah sat and watched him for quite some time. When the baby was done eating I grabbed my camera to snap a shot. That bird had sat there for at least 5 minutes...but as I got my camera ready he flew down lower in among the branches so I couldn't get a good shot. Then he flew away. I was really bummed...the picture that got I called the bird a little brat. Josiah thought that was really funny.

The next morning he was back! I grabbed my camera and got this shot of him. I suppose I should have apologized for calling him a little brat!

Go to Tell Me Thursday to get more stories behind the pictures.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

In His Word Wednesday

Psalm 8:9 O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!

Majesty: supreme greatness or authority

Today is Earth Day. Although I love nature and God's creation, I think many people have almost turned to a type of worship of nature. The earth, and those who care for it, can save us. Everything they do revolves around caring for the earth. Now, I'm all for good stewardship of our resources (which includes, but is not limited to, natural resources) but our taking care of the earth does not determine the outcome of humankind.

This verse says it all...God, and God alone, is the supreme authority in all the earth. Nothing is outside his control. There is no need to fear. He is in control of the outcome of humankind...and nothing happens on this earth that isn't part of His plan.

On a more personal note...while I was pregnant with Sarah I read about people meditating on scripture and praying during labor to decrease the pain. I thought maybe I would try it. During labor this is the verse that popped in my head with each contraction. I tried to focus on Him and His majesty and power. Did it decrease the pain? I think so...a few of the contractions I just tried to deal with the pain. They were much worse than the contractions where I was meditating on this verse. Both the nurse and midwife in attendance at the birth couldn't believe how calm and serene I was...I think this verse was part of the reason for that.

Go here for more encouragement in the Word.

Wordless Wednesday - A lovely visitor

Monday, April 20, 2009

I ♥ Faces

This week at I Faces the theme is self portrait. You had to be holding the camera in your hand - no tripod, no timers...just you and the camera. This was very hard for me. Here's as good as it gets.

Kids category:
I spend most of my life right now holding she was the natural choice to be the kid in the kid category. I snapped this last week as a practice shot and never got around to taking more. I highlighted Sarah's red shirt otherwise you almost didn't notice her.

I snapped this one this morning. I think I had already taken 20-30 shots. This one was finally O.K. Definitely not a fun category!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Menu Plan Monday

Monday: Colorful Kielbasa, Pears

Tuesday: Meatloaf, Scalloped Potatoes, Peas

Wednesday: Sloppy Joes, Potato Wedges, Carrots

Thursday: Chicken Curry, Salad, Strawberry Shortcake

Friday: Out

Saturday: Stromboli, fruit

Sunday: Mac and Cheese with smoked sausage (in Crockpot), applesauce, green beans

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Photohunt - Purple

Purple Easter Eggs

Purple Grape Hyacinths

Purple shirt while dyeing a kind of purple egg

Go here to see more hunters.

SOOC Saturday

I took this picture of Jo last spring (our lilacs aren't in bloom yet this year). I love this picture of's one of my favorites.

See more photos SOCC (straight out of the camera) here.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Loving My Husband Friday is for taking the time to focus on the positives of marriage. A time to build up your marriage and your spouse. Focus on something you love about your husband, something he did to encourage you this week, or just a tip on how to keep your marriage strong. Let your husband know you're bragging on him...everyone loves praise and accolades. Try to spend the rest of your week focusing on all the great traits of your spouse...especially when your tempted to focus on the bad! And don't forget to pray for your husband and marriage as you write your post.

Add a link to your post to Mr. Linky. Then pray for the marriages of the others who post, and give each other a little encouragement to keep our marriages strong!

This week we've been dealing with lots of sickness. Aaron has tonsilitis and is on antibiotics. Rachel had two abcesses removed from her teeth this week that were full of infection...and she is on antibiotics. Sarah got diagnosed with reflux...and is now on medication. Jada has had a very nasty stomach bug...she's been sick for 48 hours now. Even though he hasn't felt well, Aaron has helped me out tremendously this week. He took Sarah to one doctor appointment (he had his appointment at the same time) and Rachel to the dentist. He got up with Jada several times in the middle of the night when she was sick (even though he hates dealing with bodily fluids). I am extremely thankful that he is willing to jump in and take care of the kids and help me out when I am overwhelmed and can't be two places at once. Just one more thing I love about him.


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