Monday, August 28, 2023

And we are off!!!

We are off to a GREAT START to our 2023/2024 School Year!
Like last year, we have decided to meet together at the table for what we call our "Genesis Moment."  This is where we pray, memorize Scripture, study the Bible together, learn a hymn for that month and its composer, and read a book together.  I love this time!!
We are starting off with memorizing 1 Chronicles 16:8-12.  Such powerful verses on praise to the Lord!  This gets our focus right as we start our day.
We are doing an overview of each book of the Bible and also finding it's path in history with Adam's Synchronological Timeline.  Last week took us into a deep dive of the Tabernacle.  I have a feeling we might stick to this for a couple of weeks.  There is just so much to learn!
This month we have been singing, "Will Jesus find us watching?"  This is a new one to us, and we are loving it!
And then we have chosen to first read through God's Smuggler.  Wow, we are hooked already!

Silas is my highschool freshman this year.  I was a little sad as I realized that this is my first time in a very, very long time that I don't have anyone in elementary school.  How did that happen?

Callie is in 8th grade.

 Micah is in 6th grade.

It's going to be such a great school year and we are so excited!!

Saturday, August 19, 2023

Finishing up our Summer

So what did we do this summer besides camp, kayaking, and swimming in the springs?  We did a ton!! And since school is starting I need to wrap up our summer here on my blog.  I love having this resource for my kiddos to look back on and remember the good.  Lots of good happening around here!

So what did we do?

We had lots of fun time with our grandbabies.  Lollipops sure does love them! Hoping they feel the same. ;o)

We love being in Nursing Home ministry ever other Saturday.  Bro Munson does a wonderful job caring for the people there and making a difference.  He gives Micah and Silas turns preaching too and it's been great for them!

Lollipops and their grandsons.  I just love these boys to pieces!!

Silas has been on a Monopoly kick.  Wow that game takes a long time!!

The kids have been staying up late.  Probably too late.  That means they sometimes crash for naps.  They will love me for snapping this picture. :o)

More monopoly.  Micah and I played Catan this time instead.  I love that game!

And we squeezed in a couple of date nights!

We found out that July was Ice Cream month!! How fun!  So each Friday we let our kiddos take turns picking out ice cream.  We tried some very yummy flavors!

Time out with Beth,

putting lots of puzzles together, 

and taking care of our animals.  Storybook Farms has been a little more challenging this summer.  We've lost 2 of our animals and that's always sad.  But, Caliope Jane here is doing great and hopefully bred for some Christmas kids!

And more naps and more...

puzzle time!

We had plenty of time to act a little crazy and be creative, and also to

keep putting puzzles together!  For our Ladies Bible Summer Bible Study we had a puzzle theme, so we were all putting together a bunch of them.  It was fun!

In July the ladies of our church surprised Tabitha with a birthday party.  It was so fun!  And then they showered her with Kate Spade goodies!  She was surprised and felt very loved!  She deserves it, that's for sure!

My kiddos decided to grown up this summer and start looking older.  I have always said the teen years are great.  I still believe that and we are savouring these years.

Beth wrote in her book a ton!  I mean hours upon hours worth of writing.  Big news coming on that soon!!

I made lots of lotions and I love this new little hobby of mine!

We said goodbye to Wendy.  It's never easy to lose an animals.  Callie cared for her and tried to save her, but I think she was just an old rabbit and it was her time.

Patrick taught me how to play Backgammon and I love it!!! Although I am not very good at it.  I'm trying to get better!!

Time with my adult kiddos is priceless.  I love when I have time with my family!

I baked with the grandbabies.  I love doing that!

We made new friends.  I am so thankful the Harris Brothers could come by and sing!  We have them on the calendar for next year, too, so that's exciting!

We had an Anne of Green Gables night with friends and made a Fry Bar.  So yum!!! And so fun!!

So much laughter that night!!

I looked at Curriculum just about constantly and prayerfully made some decisions of what we will use for the next school year.  I am so excited about the Adam's Synchronological Timeline!!

 I began Physical Science.  Silas is doing this course this year and honestly Science (Especially High School Science) is NOT my strong point.  So, I decided I will take this class with him.  I'm getting a jumpstart to hopefully give me some extra study time!

And just like that summer is over.  And school is started.  But, that's okay.  I can always tell when it's time to begin.  And it's TIME!!

Wednesday, August 16, 2023

Summer and Modest? How does it all work together?

If you've followed my blog for any length of time, you've probably noticed that we dress a little different.  We have chosen to make sure that our clothing is modest and pleasing to the Lord. We have prayerfully looked at what the Bible says about how we should look, and have tried our best to follow those guidelines.  Sometimes those that choose to be "modest"  let those standards slip when there is an activity that makes modesty a little bit tricky.  (For example, swimming, biking, skiing, get what I mean.) I truly believe that setting Godly standards in your life should be a consistent lifestyle.  My children are watching me, and if I let those standards I have put in place slip when a certain activity arises, they lose their faith in my leadership as their Momma, and question why we do what we do.  Basically they lose faith that I really believe what I say I do, and they will begin to question every other standard and principle we follow for our family.  It's more than just "What I wear", it's a matter of the heart and how I believe the Lord would have me to live.

There are a lot of misconceptions out there about modesty, so I thought I would try and clarify a few things, then I want to give you some practical tips that have helped me navigate through being modest, while still living in this world.  In this century.  And in the place that I live.

First of all,

What modesty is not:

~A reason to be prideful and think I am better than anyone else.  If my reason for dressing different causes pride in my heart, then I have missed my purpose altogether.

~Something to be embarrased about.  I can still be put together and attractive and be modest.  I don't have to be "frumpy" or be weird.  (Or at least try not to be :o) )

~Hard to do or impossible.  I really can participate in fun things. I just have to be creative!

~Legalistic. This word can be thrown around quite easily. By definition legalism is  dependence on moral law rather than on personal religious faith. Legalism is something you add to your salvation to gain heaven.  I do not dress the way I do to earn heaven.  Christ has already paid in full the price needed for me to be saved.  I thank the Lord for that!! There is nothing I can do to earn my way to heaven.  I could cover myself in a sack and call it modest, but that would never get me to heaven.  It's because of Christ that I have salvation, not my dress standards.

What modesty is:

~Pleasing to the Lord.  God lays out clearly in His Word how we are to live and what would be pleasing to Him.  Whether it is how to treat our neighbors, how to treat our animals, what we ought to eat, and even how to's in there!  He doesn't want His Will to be a mystery to us.  That's why He tells us in the Bible.

~Not just for ladies.  I believe God wants men to be modest too!  And He has set guidelines for that in His Word as well.

~Not impossible.  You can find modest clothes!  I do admit it can be challenging.  My girls and I have learned that the hunt for right clothes can actually be fun!  When we score a cute jean skirt at a thrift store, we get very excited!!

So if I choose to be modest, and I've found in God's Word what ought to be covered, or not revealed, then how does it work to go swimming or kayaking or other summerime adventures?  Let me give you a few practical tips:

~Skirt like culottes that are flowing work very well in the water.  You can swim and still be modest!  It's important that the fabric is not clingy.  That would defeat the purpose.  My girls and I have found that we really like these on Amazon.  And they are priced well, too!  They are our favorite for water activities since they have a more full skirt, but not so big and heavy that it makes swimming difficult.  We have tried others that are cotton and have a slit on the side where the skirt is, but they just aren't practical for swimming, kayaking or biking.

~Dark T Shirts and Swim shirts are a must!

~We also go to parks when no one else is there.  I just about always remind my kiddos on the way there that if there are people there to where it won't be private for us, then we don't stay.  And that's okay.  We will find something else super fun to do that day.  Just as it's important for us to BE modest, it's important to try our best to guard our eyes of the nakedness around us.  Especially for our boys and men.  We ladies ought to do our best to help them in this area.  It may mean going to the springs the moment they open (or slightly before and hope the gate is open!!)  It may mean that we swim for 35 minutes and have to go, but that's okay.  I have found that the Momma not only sets the tone for the home, but also when out for the whole family.  If I grumble and complain that we barely got wet then had to leave, then they will complain.  But if I am so excited that we had 35 whole minutes to dive and swim and explore, then most likely everyone else will catch on too.  Then, on the days God just gives you unexpected swim time galore, it makes it even more special.

~Be Flexible with your times and places, but set your standards and keep them.  Know what God would have for you to do, and determine to be faithful.

When I first began to think about what I wore and if it was what I should be wearing, a friend gave me a book that backed up what the Holy Spirit was convicting me of in my heart.  It really put it all together for me.  The book is "What in the world should I wear" by Cathy Corle. You can find it at Revival Fires Publishing.  There are many good books on modesty out there, but this one is still my favorite.  It is very specific, and gives lots of Scripture.

So, we've wrapped up our summer.  It was amazing! But I think I'll do one more post, to share all the little, wonderful things!


Friday, August 11, 2023

Summer at the Springs

Another thing we have really enjoyed doing this summer is going to the Springs in our area.  Micah got the coolest snorkel mask and we determined we were going to use it a bunch!!

We loved going to Itchetucknee springs.  The water is soooo coooold!  But once you finally make it in, it is so worth it!  It's so beautiful with lots of fish and turtles.

Brenna has determined to get Asa used to the water.  He loves it!

Then we decided to explore a new to us spring, "Little River Spring" in Branford.  Wow!! I think it's our new favorite!

I love how it has steps and ramps that go right into the springs.  The concrete platform is perfect for the little ones to get used to the water.

We loved it so much that we talked Beth and Patrick into going back again with us.  The spring is part of the Suwanee River.  It's amazing how you can see the brown and warm river and the cold and blue springs divide.

It is so cold!!

We had so much fun that we talked Josh, Tabitha, 'Merica (my new name for Josh's kids) and Grammy to even go back another time!!

They loved the water!!!

We had such a great morning together!!!

The springs are so beautiful, I am so glad we could enjoy them together this summer!
But, if you know anything about our springs, you know that in the summer they are pretty packed with people.  And, for the most part, when people go to the springs they aren't modest.  So, how does a girl that chooses to be modest in her attire, and wants to protect the eyes of her husband and sons from seeing immodestly, go to the springs?  I'm wanting to do a post soon on "A Modest Girls Guide to Summer Activities"  or some title like that. :o)  The Lord has really been putting on my heart to share the things I've learned along the way.  So, look for that post soon!