Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Day after Christmas

Our family is very much a hunting and guns family and one of our favorite things to do is shoot skeet. We look for any excuse to have a skeet shoot. Here are a few photos from the day after Christmas. Unfortunately, my brothers were camera shy so there aren’t any pictures of them.

big girls

Wendi and me

Jacob manning the skeet trap

Jacob manning the skeet trap


Wendi and our aunt


Oh my, what’s this? PINK shells? I wonder who could have been shooting those?


MY pinks shells and new pink and camo gun case for my 12gauge shotgun.


I did get a picture of the boys! They are putting a snorkel kit on one of Patric’s four-wheelers. Now he can float his four--wheeler across the pond. Boys…..



Home Again…well, almost…

The holidays are over and we are back to our new city home. It was so hard to leave this time and come back. We had a wonderful five days with our family and it was so good to sleep in our own bed for a couple of nights. I have felt like quite  the nomad the last several weeks.

Here is just a quick peak into our Christmas. We are having friends come and stay with us for New Year’s and I have lots of preparing to do. My best and oldest childhood friend married one of Jacob’s best friends 6 weeks after we married. Does it get any better than that? Holly and I had always hoped we would marry men that liked each other so we could spend time together and the Lord worked it out to where we married best friends. :)

Our first married Christmas  was wonderful. This was actually our third Christmas to spend together and each year it gets better.  We had our little Christmas, just the two of us, Christmas Eve morning. As usual, Jacob spoiled me completely rotten. He surprised me with a wide angle and a telephoto lens for my camera as well as lots of other things.

We spent Christmas Eve night with my parents and siblings and were there to watch the girls open their gifts the next morning. This year was a little different than most—usually the little people are up first and wake everyone up.This year however, we big people were up first and woke the girls up to open gifts.

Jacob loves to tell people about Christmas morning at my parents’ house. Unlike most families, we don’t take turns, opening our gifts one person  at a time. The night before we sort out all the gifts according to who they belong to. Christmas morning, when everyone is awake and in the livingroom, Daddy says “Go!” and the wrapping paper starts to fly. Jacob refers to it as chaos and having been an only child, had no idea what he was getting into with a Christmas for seven kids.


Of course, after close to 20 years of opening gifts this way, we have perfected our method and no gifts are lost :)

faithdressI made all the little girls fancy dresses for Christmas. Faith loved hers so much she didn’t want to take it off. Even at barely a year, she already loves “foofy” clothes and shoes. The other girls floated around in their dresses and had a fashion show for Daddy. I put invisible zippers in their dresses instead of buttons so they felt very grown up. My little sisters are so much fun to sew for.   




Our family grew by one this year. Meet Lulu:


One of my gifts from my in-laws was this lovely  dress form (already modeling a dress in the works for my Etsy shop)

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

An Award!!!!!!!!

I was pleasantly surprised yesterday when I realized my little blog had been awarded the Liebster Blog award by Lisa @ Olive Plants all Around my Table.  She always leaves sweet, encouraging comments and I enjoy popping in for encouragement at her blog.

So, here is how the Liebster award works:  "liebster"  is a German word meaning friend, love, or dearest. It is awarded to blogs with 200 followers or fewer.  In order to accept the award, the honored blogger must write a post to thank the giver, with a link back to their blog...and then pass on the encouragement to five more bloggers.  

Here are my picks :) stop by, leave a comment and let them know where heard about them.

Brianna @ Fountain of Love

Andrea @ She Looks Well into the Ways of Her Household.

Elissa @ Crunchy Con Natural Health and Cosmetics

Stacie @ Thoughts from Stacie

Aimee @Cadeau Knitwear




Tuesday, December 20, 2011

More of Him

If you would to download this picture, right click on it, then select "Save As" or "Save Image As"  (C) 2011 Country Mouse Musings
I found this poem probably ten years ago and painted a picture to go with it and had it framed for my mom. I don’t remember where I found it but I’ve always remembered what it said. It speaks to me and convicts me even more now that I am older and have a home of my own.
  If we were to be given three wishes, would they be the same as the ones in the poem? Or would they be different?
   I have to admit that my heart isn’t always in the right place and on some of my weaker days I might wish for something else.  Sometimes the things I wish for have no eternal value at all. I wish to be out of situations that make me uncomfortable, when in reality I was placed there for my good, so I could mature and my walk with God grow deeper. I fail to see what is really happening because all I can perceive is my own little bubble of right now and what makes me happy right now. I pray and ask the Lord to give me wisdom and perception to see and realize where I am and what is happening. I ask for contentment and grace to bear what is being asked of me.
Do I really want to know Him more? Is that the driving force behind everything I do? Is that what consumes me? When Jacob and I were first getting to know each other we talked for hours on end. I  paid attention to everything he said and wanted to know what he liked, what made him happy, what drove and motivated him. I wanted to know what his goals and dreams were. I just wanted to know him.
  As I got to know him, I came to love him. His love for me began to help heal the scars from my years of rebellion and that made me love him even more and ache to be with him.
   Is it any different with the Lord? The more time we spend with Him, the more we pursue Him, the more our love for Him will deepen. We will ache to be in His presence and at His feet. If we draw nigh to Him, He will draw nigh to us (James 4:8).
   I want to be the woman that He has called me to be and wants me to be. I want the Fruits of Spirit to be evident and at work in my life. I want to be an asset, not a liability. I don’t want to be an embarrassment to Him or to His Name.
   I want to love how He loves—without respect of persons and unreservedly. I want to be meek, gentle, full of joy,  longsuffering, temperate, full of His grace, merciful, quick to forgive and forget, slow to anger, patient, self-sacrificing—I want all of the attributes of Christ in my life.
  If He asks me to do something or to give up something, I want to be at a place in my walk with Him to obey immediately without reservation, because I trust Him with my life. We don’t always understand why He asks some things of us—things that hurt or are uncomfortable. But if we submit and say “Your will, not mine”, down the road we will see how it was for our best and we’ll be so thankful that we obeyed. He will not ask us to do something that we are incapable of doing. We may no be able to do it in and of ourselves, but we can do all things through Him (Phil. 4:13).  Sometimes things are sent our way to make us lean on Him more and draw our strength from Him.

More of You, more of You,
I’ve had all, but what I need is just more of You.
Of things I’ve had my fill, and yet I hunger still,
Empty and bare, Lord hear my prayer for more of You.

EOA # 15

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Reason for the Season

My little sister Hannah singing Happy Birthday Jesus. So sweet and I'm so proud of her! Hope you enjoy. Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Mid-December Thoughts

Joy and contentment...those are my most pronounced emotions right now. I'm sitting in our living room admiring our Christmas tree and basking in it's glow, and thanking the Lord for His love and sacrifice for me.
  It's raining pretty hard outside and the sound is so soothing. My Jacob is fast asleep and I'm enjoying a cup of tea and thinking about our first month away from our home. It has flown by much quicker than I anticipated and I am so much happier than I thought I would be while we were here.
  I wasn't too sure about how well I would do, being so far away from our family and church and friends. The last time we were here on business, it was only for a week, but I was miserable. In fact, I wanted to cry when I learned that they were sending us here again. I didn't want to have to travel for our first Christmas. The holidays can already be so hectic without adding travel on top of them. Although we won't have the laid-back first Christmas we both envisioned I think it will be our best we've ever had.
 This month also held my first birthday to spend away from my family and--for most of the day--alone. For a girl who had never been alone and was used to being surrounded by lots of siblings and family, I wasn't sure how well I would do. I admit, earlier during the weekend I had a little crying spell--I was really missing everyone. But, I had a wonderful day filled with love and birthday wishes from so many people and my day was topped off by a sweet date with my husband. I guess I'm really grown up now.
 My mom and sisters spent last weekend with me while Jacob was on a hunting trip with his dad. They brought me a birthday cake and Hannah and Lydia sang "Happy Birthday" to me. Even though they were a few days late, they still wanted to celebrate. We had such a good time while they were here.
 I am so thankful that of all the places we could have been sent for Jacob's job, we were sent to a city where we have friends. It has been such a blessing to be able to spend time with my friend Elizah and her three sweet children. We have enjoyed being with them so much--whether out for fun double dates with her and her husband Brian or just relaxing at their home and talking about the Lord. I would be so lonely here were it not for them.
 I am so thankful for my dear friends at home who regularly check on me or just let me know they are thinking about me and missing me. That helps me feel closer to home and not cut off and forsaken ;)  My mailbox has held several lovely surprises of late. One of my buddies from church sent me some delicious coffee and earlier this week there was a package of some lovely vintage patterns from my sweet friend Missy. :)
  The place I feared would feel like and exile has proven to be a resting place. A place to stop and ponder, regroup and prepare for the next stretch of the journey.  One thing that I think has helped me while I'm here is that I decided to try and enjoy being here and make the best of it. Yes, I get homesick at least 5 times a week, but I try very hard not to dwell on it. If I look at our time here as and adventure and not burden, it makes things much easier. I want to be content wherever I am. When you begin to do to that, it helps you to see the blessing in what you may feel like is a curse.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

O Give us Homes

O give us homes built firm upon the Savior, Where Christ is Head and Counselor and Guide;
Where ev'ry child is taught His love and favor And gives his heart to Christ, the crucified:
How sweet to know that tho his footsteps waver His faithful Lord is walking by his side!
O give us home with godly fathers, mothers, Who always place their hope and trust in Him;
Whose tender patience turmoil never bothers, Whose calm and courage trouble cannot dim;
A home where each fins joy in serving others, And love still shines, tho days be dark and grim.
O give us homes where Christ is Lord and Master, The Bible read, the precious hymns still sung;
Where pray'r comes first in peace or in disaster, And praise is natural speech to ev'ry tongue;
Where mountains move before a faith that's vaster, And Christ sufficient is for old and young.
O Lord, our God, our homes are Thine forever!  We trust to Thee their problems, toil, and care;
Their bonds of love no enemy can sever If Thou art always Lord and Master there:
Be Thou the center of our least endeavor Be Thou our Guest, our hearts and homes to share.

 Barbara B. Hart, 1916
Jean Sibelius, 1865-1957

EOA #14 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

It's Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas....

 The last several days have been so busy! Last weekend I was blessed to have Mom and the girls come and visit for the weekend. We had such a good time and even got some sewing done.
 Today was spent finishing up Christmas shopping and decorating the apartment and wrapping gifts. I still have several more to wrap and my hands are tired ;)
  A longer post is in the works, so come back soon!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Command Performance Radio

Command Performance Radio Archives

One of my favorite eras of history is WWII. I love movies and music from that time, as well as clothing and hairstyles.
 I was tickled pink when I found the Command Performance Radio Archives online. The weekly broadcasts were especially for the troops, who could write in and request appearances by whichever celebrities  they wanted.
Bob Hope, Judy Garland, Betty Grable, Francis Langford, Cary Grant, Clark Gable, Rita Hayworth,
Abbot and Costello, Carmen Miranda, Tommy Dorsey & his  Band, Shirley Temple, Olivia de Haviland, Bing Cosby, Martha Raye, Carole Landis, Alice Faye, Ginger Rogers, and Frank Sinatra are just a few of the many actors and entertainers that appeared on Command Performance.
  I had heard of Command Performance Radio before, but had never listened to a broadcast. Then I watched Four Jills in a Jeep and fell in love. One of my favorite movies, Four Jills in a Jeep is a fictional account of four real actresses--Kay Francis, Martha Raye, Carol Landis, and Mitzi Mayfair--as they perform for the troops on the radio and on USO tours.
 Here is one of many broadcasts featuring Betty Grable as the Mistress of Ceremonies, along with appearances by Judy Canova and Bergen & McCarthy.
 Have fun enjoying this little piece of history, and enjoy the other broadcasts available here.

Pearl Harbor's 70th Anniversary

"Yesterday, December 7th, 1941 — a date which will live in infamy — the United States of America was suddenly and deliberately attacked by naval and air forces of the Empire of Japan.
The United States was at peace with that nation and, at the solicitation of Japan, was still in conversation with its government and its emperor looking toward the maintenance of peace in the Pacific.
Indeed, one hour after Japanese air squadrons had commenced bombing in the American island of Oahu, the Japanese ambassador to the United States and his colleagues delivered to our Secretary of State a formal reply to a recent American message. While this reply stated that it seemed useless to continue the existing diplomatic negotiations, it contained no threat or hint of war or of armed attack.
It will be recorded that the distance of Hawaii from Japan makes it obvious that the attack was deliberately planned many days or even weeks ago. During the intervening time, the Japanese government has deliberately sought to deceive the United States by false statements and expressions of hope for continued peace.
The attack yesterday on the Hawaiian islands has caused severe damage to American naval and military forces. I regret to tell you that very many American lives have been lost. In addition, American ships have been reported torpedoed on the high seas between San Francisco and Honolulu......
  ... Japan has, therefore, undertaken a surprise offensive extending throughout the Pacific area. The facts of yesterday and today speak for themselves. The people of the United States have already formed their opinions and well understand the implications to the very life and safety of our nation. As commander in chief of the Army and Navy, I have directed that all measures be taken for our defense. But always will our whole nation remember the character of the onslaught against us.
No matter how long it may take us to overcome this premeditated invasion, the American people in their righteous might will win through to absolute victory.
I believe that I interpret the will of the Congress and of the people when I assert that we will not only defend ourselves to the uttermost, but will make it very certain that this form of treachery shall never again endanger us.
Hostilities exist. There is no blinking at the fact that our people, our territory, and our interests are in grave danger.
With confidence in our armed forces, with the unbounding determination of our people, we will gain the inevitable triumph — so help us God.
I ask that the Congress declare that since the unprovoked and dastardly attack by Japan on Sunday, December 7th, 1941, a state of war has existed between the United States and the Japanese empire."
~~Franklin D. Roosevelt, Dec 8th, 1941, in his speech to Congress

Monday, December 5, 2011

Digital Scrapbooking: Part 2

 In this post, I shared my favorite software for digital scrapbooking, Craft Artist Compact.  The free digikits available from the website are great, but they didn't fulfill all of my element needs. I started searching and found that there are lots of free kits available to download and the majority of them are free. They often come with all kinds of elements--lace, buttons, ribbons, backgrounds, frames, borders, etc.
 JPEG files will work with the program, but PNG files work the best. They have a transparent background and work best for layering.
   Once you start looking and searching, you'll find more things than you have time to look through. Here are a few places to get you started.

Friendly Scrap

Far Far Hill

Shabby Princess

Have fun!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Two Years Ago Today....

Two years ago today, Jacob asked for permission date me. I can't believe how fast time has flown by. It has been the most fun, wonderful, exciting, and full two years of my life. I was reading over our story yesterday and marveled anew at how the Lord brought us and everything together.
  I can't imagine being with anyone else. If it is this wonderful now, and we've only just begun, I can't imagine how it will be in a few years, and then in twenty years....
  To sum it up, the following quote from Winnie-the-Pooh says how I feel: