Monday, January 18, 2016

Intentionally Making Our Home-Sweet Part 1: The Peace of Christ

No graphics in this. Just a message from the heart to send, as a foundation for what the Lord leads to follow. We can Intentionally Make Our Home-Sweet...but we must start at the beginning.

There is no true peace without Christ.

We cannot rightly minister to others without ourselves being in right standing with God. Not if we really want to touch the part of them that matters: their heart.

In Christ we are assured the following:

The peace of forgiven sin - The Living Word, The Word Made Flesh. Christ in us the hope of glory.

The peace of knowing that no matter what happens in this world, our Father God is a Steadfast Rock that will never change.

The peace of knowing that when we have come to the end of it all, and are utterly spent, that the Father's Everlasting Arms are open and reaching to draw us in to His embrace.

The peace of the Written Word, the Love Letter, written to us. His truth, His instruction, His promises, His revelations, His light, His Saving Grace.

We can set about making every physical, outward thing beautiful and orderly; nothing out of place. Many succeed at this. Yet, inside, there is naught but an unhappy and troubled heart. A heart full of fear, anger and bitterness. A mind that is discontented, envious, set upon the things of this world and not that which is eternal.

The Christ Follower is to live with a mind set on things above, not on things of the earth where everything will fade and decay and moth can destroy and thief can steal.  The mind that is set upon Christ is focused on eternity and how today, the present, will glorify Him eternally.

We must come to the place of fearing God, which is the beginning of wisdom. To understand the purpose and plan of your place in His eternity. To finally know it's not up to 'me', but up to Him, that allows such rest, peace, and comfort to our soul. This cannot be purchased, manipulated, manufactured, nor fabricated.

God's plan of Salvation, through His Son, The Savior, Christ Jesus, is unbelievable to those who have not tasted and seen that the Lord is good. Sadly, they are blinded to everything He has to offer.

On the other hand, to those who have turned their eyes upon Jesus, cannot deny the joy of receiving His Gift, His Life, His cleansing and the infilling of His Spirit. His presence fills every void space inside us. This is the Door, the Entrance to the Kingdom. That Divine Love floods our soul with rest from every thing that gives us struggle, conquering it as we surrender our will to His.

This fruit does not come unless the heart and life are fully surrendered. This fruit will only grow properly from a branch that is connected to the Vine, Christ.

This world is passing away. The comforts of this world, this life, are not the end. What will happen if our only source of comfort is in our possessions?  What would we do when our possessions rust, decay or come to ruin?

First and foremost, we must have that heart relationship with our Heavenly Father, through Christ. Only a surrendered heart can bring peace to others. Only a surrendered heart can bring life to others. Only a surrendered heart can bring unselfish, true love to others.

We are called as followers of Christ, Who is The Way, The Truth and The Life, to deny ourselves, take up the cross and follow Him. Our lives should reflect the Kingdom of God. Is the reflection of Christ's beauty clear in our lives? Will those who look to us to see Him, see Him clearly?

And so, finally, how does this affect my home?

A heart at peace with it's Savior will reflect all that comes from the Savior, no matter where we are or how we are being poured out for His glory. Every circumstance and situation must reflect His peace. If it is yet a struggle, spend time with Him and sort it out. Remember what was said previously, we are on a journey. It is a walk taken one step at a time. Be willing and let him work.

Our homes should also be a reflection of every fruit of God's Spirit. In like manner, as the Spirit is poured into us, His vessels, we are then to be poured out to others.

It only makes sense that if we are filled to overflowing, we have more than enough to give to others.This infilling comes as we spend deliberate time with the Lord. What a joy that each day He will give us fresh manna, not only to sustain ourselves, but to nourish others as well.

When all is said and done, it is always about others. We know what this world is about, let us strive to show those who come into our homes and lives that we have been feasting on Heavenly Manna, and we have more than enough to share.

The Kingdom of God is within you. Since we are Christ's, it is possible to show the world what living in the Kingdom is like now. Not one sweet morning when this life is over.

Ask Father where to start. First in your heart, and then in your home. Empty your heart of clutter, and then set about to rid your home as well. The heart must precede the home.

A fresh start is a good thing and we know that every good and perfect gift comes from the Father of Lights who does not change like shifting shadows!

Dear Heavenly Father, I pray that those who read this reminder will take the time to consider what is written, take it to the Lord and set things in order in their hearts first, as the first stepping stone on this wonderful journey you have set before us, your people. Provide fresh manna for us and those you put in our paths. Thank you. In Christ Name. 

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Series: Intentionally Making Your Home-Sweet

It has been my observation that life does not always afford circumstances that are blissful. In fact, it seems to be the opposite. I have come to find that Home-Sweet Living does not  simply fall into place, rather it must be intentional.

The times we live in do not tend toward the fruit of the Spirit. On the contrary, this world's fruit is death according to God's Word.

With all the worries, fears, pressures and opportunities for anxiety today, there is an even greater need to bring a peaceful atmosphere into our homes, to make them a sanctuary of God's love. A refuge that guards against the world and the cares of this present age that try to weigh us down.

A home where love reigns. A dwelling where confusion is not allowed to enter. Not just a wooden or brick and mortar box that holds our belongings, but a sanctuary where our families, friends and even we, ourselves, can find rest, away from the stresses of everyday life.
In upcoming posts, I shall attempt to point out some areas where our homes and lives can be just that. True peace does not come upon entering a building, a house...or any physical place on this earth. True peace comes from the Savior. It is a heart attitude.  A heart posture and a heart-home. Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world must dwell, abide, in our heart-home. If you have not allowed the Father, the Savior and the Holy Spirit to make their abode in you, as God's temple, there will be no true peace, no matter how tight a ship you run. This is of utmost importance. This must be the first place to have peace, so it can flow from Him to you to others.

As followers of Christ, we, in faith, are able to ask our beloved Father for wisdom, according to James 1:5-6. I have put this to the test and found it to be true on all accounts, in every situation. Bottom line, without Christ, we can do nothing! It is all vanity to believe we can bear the fruit of righteousness ourselves, apart from Christ. It won't work! It shall fail!

"I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." John 15:5

The deceiver would have us believe that there are areas of our lives that God is not concerned about. That some things are so small that they are not necessary to take to the Throne of Grace. This is a lie from the enemy of our soul! According to Psalm 139, God's thoughts toward us outnumber the grains of the sand. Selah! If that is the case, then the minutest, most miniscule thing, is on His mind, toward us. His eye is on the sparrow, so I know He watches me! He is for us! He wants us to succeed in order to bring glory to His name! If God be for us, who can be against us (Romans 8:31)? No one!!!

Once we understand we need wisdom, we must make asking for wisdom a priority. As home-makers/home-keepers, it is proper to go to God and ask for that wisdom from above. We must know how He desires us to minister to those He places in our lives. Ask for a Word, a Scripture, a starting point, a point of launch, and when you have it, write it down, print it out and hang it here and there in your home as a reminder of your mission from the Lord. Be mindful of those points of communication from the Lord to you, according to His Word. Always according to His Word.

Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

You are not a 'bother' to God Almighty. Nothing is too trivial for His infinite power, wisdom, or patience.

Today, go to Him and lay down every burden, every struggle, every work in our own effort, and ask Him where to begin in your Intentional Home-Sweet Journey.

He will not disappoint you. Listen. Obey. Begin to walk in faith in the areas He is showing you! I will be on this journey too. We can encourage one another along the way!

I'd love to hear back from you. What word of encouraging Scripture has the Lord given you as a promise and a reminder to set you walking on the path to intentionally make your Home-Sweet?

Remember as you go: Life is a journey, it is a walk. Nothing happens overnight. Each day we can apply God's Infinite Wisdom to keep us on His path.

Father God, please bless the reader as they humbly ask for wisdom from above, Your wisdom. Guide them in their home-sweet journey and cause them to glorify You as they seek to do so in their lives and the lives of those you bring to them. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Monday, January 11, 2016


The month of January, for me, has always set me to thought. A brand new year with new opportunities. A clean slate. Times of refreshing and new beginnings.

The shorter winter days mean more indoor time for me. There is more time for indoor projects. Garden thoughts begin to stir. Thoughts of how to make better things happen with our livestock and birds.

I have set some goals for myself. Goals that will lead me in a new direction. I am happy for that.

I have set my new goals with you in mind. I am thankful for those of you who take the time to read my posts. I would like the time you come to visit to focus more on you and not so much on me anymore. I would like to offer some things to help you bring more focus on your home and the atmosphere you create, whether you are at home alone or in a house filled with people.

I would like to share some creative home-making projects. Inspiring you in filling your home with thoughtful things to bless those who live there or come for a visit or those whom the Lord impresses upon your heart to bless.

Making home doesn't take a lot of money, nor does it take fanciful items. Making home takes love, and out of that love can come a home where others can bask in the presence of the Lord Jesus, who right now has gone to make a home for us, that we may be where He is.

Let us follow the path of our Creator, and fill our homes with love, because love never fails.

My prayer is that we would spend time at the feet of our Dear Savior and learn how He would have us reflect His love in the home He has blessed us with, be it ever so humble.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Persecution in Pakistan

I met a sister in Christ tonight.
She is a refugee, in Thailand.
She is going to mail her testimony to me.
She is 22 years old.
She asked for help.
She is so young.
Young and married.
Living in a building with about 50 families.
They have needs, but remain faithful to Christ.
And Christ will be faithful to them.
I cannot say her name. But our Lord knows it, and He is El Shaddai!

She said I could tell you about her. 
I will share more as I learn more.

Lord, protect my new Sister/friend and her husband and all those who have fled persecution from Pakistan and now dwell together in Thailand. Please keep them strong in their most holy faith. Encourage them by your Spirit and let them bless their enemies and pray for them. Send help to them Father. In Christ Jesus' Mighty Name! 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Spring Into Summer

I've been missing my blog.
I've been missing you, my dear friends!

Missing checking in with you and filling you in on what's happening here.
What's happening here?
Well, a lot of things. 

The very best important thing is...we were blessed to become Grandparents on May 5, 2015. Our oldest son and his wife had a son. His name is Maximilian David Pantley. He is a beautiful boy and he has brought the sweetness of babyhood back into our home! We are savoring every opportunity to hold him and pray for him and cuddle him.

What else have we been up to?

Well, not much on the handiwork, but that is soon to change. We have ideas and are now preparing a place to work. The craft room, at the moment, is not working out. I need to be where I can see what's going on, at least for now, so we're setting up a work station in the living spaces.

Lydia and I are, very soon, trying our hand at making our own soap. When we think we're ready, we will offer it for sale, along with other handmade items, offered by us and by some friends. 
Hurray for high hopes!

Working on our garden and cleaning out goat pens and sheds. We have 3 bucklings and 2 doelings that were born within the last couple of weeks. This year we are letting the Mamas feed them and not bottle feeding. It does free us up for other things.

That is a bit of a catch-up on the happenings in our neck of the woods. I have much to share, but this is a good start. It's good to be back. Lord willing, this is a new beginning.

 Thank you Dearest Savior for all the blessings You have given us. We do not deserve anything from Your kind hand, yet You bestow Your grace and mercy on us each day and provide our needs as You see fit. Praise you for every Home-Sweet Thing You have provided. May we live to glorify You in every area of our lives. Amen

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Is There An Echo In Here?

Hello Dear Ones!

I am popping in to say 'Hello' and I haven't forgotten you. I am frantically attempting to get things ready for my oldest son's wedding on October 4th.

Housework, yard work, canning, freezing, dehydrating...mucking pens and cleaning coops. Weeding and moving manure! You get the picture!

On top of it...sewing. Sewing a wedding gown and an outfit for myself. The gown has to outfit...not such a big deal. But I will try!

Here is a cute photo of our meat birds that moved outside today. 48 to be exact. In my dining room. That dining room has had its share of transforming into a nursery this year!

Anyhow...they're outside and happy! So am I...48 birds equals a whole lot of dust and odor! Now I can really get down to cleaning inside the house for my family from Illinois! YAY!!

I really like my chickens! They are so cute...for now!

Blessings upon you and your Home-Sweet! Things should be back to 'normal' after the October 4th wedding! Until then...I'm still here!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Popping In To Say...

Hello. .".

It's been a while.

All this time I've been busily working...hopefully not too much Martha. Too much Martha is not good! But honestly, it feels like lots of Martha.

I have come to understand the need to sit at the feet of Jesus. Mary had it right, she not only understood the need to come aside...she actually made it a priority. She took time to bask in His presence OVER EVERYTHING ELSE!!!

Jesus told Martha she was troubled about many things. He told her she was distracted. He told her one thing was necessary, one thing needful. Mary chose that part. That good part.

Sitting at His feet and listening to Him.

The Lord said it wouldn't be taken away from Mary...those things learned from time spent with Him.

That's one big thing I learned this summer. The best thing. All the other things that I learned and did pale in comparison. There were probably many times I was troubled and distracted. But always, the Holy Spirit reminded me of that one needful thing. My heart ached at times for it.

Sitting at Jesus' feet and listening to Him.


So much to tell. Summer stories. But I'll leave that for next time!

It might not be a bad thing to sit and take the time to read Luke 10:38-42.

What will Jesus tell you while you sit at His feet and hear His word?

May the Holy Father, the Only Wise God liberate you to sit at the feet of His Dear Son, Jesus Christ the Lord of All. Be blessed!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Helpers Galore and Accomplishments!

Well, the day worked out just as I had planned. To that I say, 'Praise be to God'!!!

The day's projects were completed and I am tired-but happy.

I wanted to:
  •  clean out the winter mess under the roof leading to the back door...done! 
  •  organize the garden stuff I still use...done! 
  •  put pallets down to hold boxes for a Memorial Day Weekend yard sale...done! 
  •  rake the section of the drive to the pole barn...done! 
  • all the invasive plants/weeds mixed in with my unfortunate, neglected raspberries, pulled 'and banished from my garden...forevermore! (I do not know what this weed is...I have a photo...if you have seen this plant and know its all means inform me! It has a mass of underground runners that go forth from what I call the 'mother' plant and it proceeds to take over the entire area and choke out every good thing you may want there. One little plug of it can eventually 'own' the place it decides to dwell in.) Not nice. Not nice indeed!

What is this stuff???

Tomorrow, when there is a lull in the predicted rain that is coming in, I will finish up mulching the raspberries and be very satisfied. There are so many things on my to-do list...and that was a big one, having been neglected these past two years. Unfortunately, there are spots where the berry canes have either been choked or simply died. I will have to transplant some of the volunteer shoots coming up.

Spring is a time for work after a long winter's rest and work is what is going on here! We have our share. The weedy flower beds are getting cleaned out and will soon be ready to transplant. I haven't figured out the flower placement yet, but am contemplating all the time. It will come together. I am doing my best to eradicate my useless lawn and replace it with food.

Lydia asked me how much of the elephant we bit off today! :) I think she may be getting it. Maybe.

I overheard the conversation between her and her friend as they were pulling that horrid weed in the raspberries...saying, of all things, that they were enjoying themselves!!!

I said not a word. Mama's have to know when to let satisfaction occur internally and not ruin it with a comment!!! Have all the fun you want girls! I will not try to stop you!!

I am looking forward to rain coming in though, I started transplanting our pepper and tomato seedlings that finally grew their true leaves and will continue that task when I'm stuck indoors. Depending on the weather, I have a lot of sewing to do. I want to make a pair of summer bloomers to wear under my skirt and I have aprons to make. I also have to perfect the covering/cap I am working on. The instructions are vague and I have made 3 already and still am not satisfied with the results. There are ladies waiting for a completed pattern and I will post it when finished, hopefully we will be blessed with enough rain that will allow me time to work on it this spring/summer.

Mosquitoes and ticks are out now. Every day one of us finds a wood tick on us. Thank the Lord there are no deer ticks so far! Ticks are gross and make me cringe! Ew!

KatyJoy still has NOT had her kid/kids!!! Here she was a week ago...large as anything...showing signs, but nothing! The baby/babies are on the passenger side (bottom of the photo). Poor Mama...heavy for sure!

And that is a little bit of what is going on here at the Home-Sweet. There is always something to share, always something new and exciting!

Proverbs 13:4 - 'The soul of the sluggard desires, and has nothing: but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.'

I am so thankful for the accomplishments of the day! God be praised that three of my children, my daughter -in-love to be and I, along with Lydia's friend had good fellowship and productivity, a sunny day and happy laughter. A true blessing indeed. I love my children and am thankful that the Lord is healing them and will bring those who don't yet know Him into the fold when He sees fit. I trust Him and His perfect timing. 'For I know in Whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is faithful, to keep that which I've committed unto Him against that day.' 2 Timothy 1:12

Praise Him!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Raspberry Lessons

*Typed while enjoying Bigelow "I Love Lemon" tea! YUM!

I spent most of today working on pruning and cleaning up my raspberry bushes. The weather  was just right and they really needed some an immense amount of attention. I managed to get 1/4th of the bushes pruned, the dead canes cut out and weeding begun. We are going on two years of neglect, so it will take more than one day to finish the job. After all the weeding, pruning and dead cane removing, they will have to be mulched with the chicken-finished goat mulch. They are excellent at making mulch and it makes the garden grow fantastically!

Here are a couple of photos of what I accomplished so far:

This is the mess I am dealing with!

Still looking messy, but the canes are tied

A closer look at the tied canes

As I prune and clean these up I think on John 15 where the Lord explains to the disciples that He is the true vine and the Father is the husbandman. Every branch that does not bear fruit he takes away. Every branch that bears fruit he prunes that it may bear more fruit.Then He goes on to say that unless we abide in the vine we cannot bear fruit and that it is as we abide that we bring forth much fruit...because without the Lord Jesus Christ, we can do nothing.

I wonder as I carefully tend these berries if that is how the Lord works on our hearts. Cutting out the dead branches and casting them aside, as I've done, pruning those things from us that hinder our walk, the dead works and feeble attempts at living this life without Him, they lose life and dry up and die. They are only good for the fire!

Those branches that remain are budding forth with life and with the promise of bearing abundant fruit for the season, just as our hearts and lives bear fruit as we abide in  His love and presence and are nourished from His life-giving Word. To be connected to Him is our very life!

This is what I think of over and over as I snip and prune and pull weeds and tie the canes into orderly rows. I imagine the fruit that will grow and pray that God will be blessed with much good fruit from my heart and life for His Kingdom as I grow into His likeness.

I absolutely enjoy working in my gardens, this process of cleaning up the mess from two years of neglect is an opportunity to take the many lessons that Jesus taught and apply them to real life lessons.

God started it all in a garden, and I can totally see why!

I pray that as you spend time in His presence you will allow Him to tend you and prune you so that you may bear abundant fruit, fit for the Master's use! Amen

What gardening are you doing at your Home-Sweet this week?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Home Again

We were able to get away to meet with beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ this past weekend. It was a wonderful time in the Lord and it went too quickly! Some day there will be no separation...Maranatha, Come Lord Jesus!

Still, back home means back to work. Lots of work. The gardens have been 'resting' for two years (maybe more in some spots) and there will be back-breaking, hard, tiring work to do until it's cleaned up and planted.

For those of you who asked...KatyJoy still has not had her kids! Hard to believe, but true. This has been going on for some time now, but her udder really is filling out and it has to be any time ...!!!

Mimi the doing wonderful and now that I'm back home I'm weaning her and she'll be outside at night again. Praise the Lord for her restoration! It was a bit touch and go there, but when you pray and ask God for wisdom, He gives it! Between probiotics and electrolytes, and two injections, she's right as rain again. I learn as I go. Research done under the Lord's tutelage.

Lydia and I went out and tackled a portion of our pea fence this morning. It took us a while, but that little section shows progress. My garden is a sight to behold. It's shameful! I'm sure it would send chills up and down the spines of most avid gardeners I know. It makes me shudder too! But, I have vision for it and can see the beautiful finished product! It's going to take a lot of time and energy, but we'll get the job done. I am determined.

I'm going to keep it somewhat short tonight. I'm tired from the rush to finish my garden goal today (clean off fence section and get some peas in before it rains). I think I'll go read for a bit and try to put down the Kindle before it smacks me in the face as I fall asleep! Can anyone relate?

Blessed be the Name of the Lord for keeping us, providing for us and protecting us. The Lord Jesus Christ is the only answer I have for all of life's dilemmas. God is good and His mercy endureth forever! Praise Him!

What is your garden goal for the week at your Home-Sweet? May the Lord grant you the grace and strength to meet your goal!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Productive Day!

Today I felt as if I raced from one thing to another.

Tending to KatyJoy first thing to see if we had kids...nope! She's still breathing harder, but not much going on. Udders filling up quickly...really any time now!

Giving Mimi a bottle (she's still in the dining room!), little!

Right away getting milking done and other chores.

Then the house was empty, so I pretended I had nothing to do except clean my kitchen and do laundry. Wow, did that feel good! I just really like to do the housework, especially when I am the only one home! I love my family a whole lot, but I am not alone much, so I appreciate alone time, I think it makes me productive!

Spent time taking photos of bees when Mr. Home-Sweet was checking his new package hives. They've been in there two weeks now so he wanted to get in there and take a peek to make sure there was a queen laying eggs. He found all the queens and there were eggs in all the hives. Good! Here are a couple of photos:

Wall-to-Wall Bees!

Here Is The Queen
Lots Of Capped Brood

Look At His Bright Yellow Pollen Baskets!

Then I had to go and plant a blueberry bush...and I did, with the sun beating down on me, but it was good to get another one planted. I gave them all a good watering and have to go do more tomorrow!

Happy Blueberry Bush

Had to run to Tractor Supply for kid feed and chicken stuff. Dawdled around in there and came home.

Took it easy later with Mr. Home-Sweet. Good day!

I am thankful for a productive day here at the Home-Sweet...little by little we are getting things done. Each year making more happen. Praise the Lord for a good day!

Friday, April 11, 2014

Busy Tending Doe...More Tomorrow!

This is just a quick post to say that I will be up all night watching and waiting for our doe KatyJoy to kid. We've been checking her all day and nothing yet. She's definitely in labor, the waiting is the worst!

Hopefully tomorrow I will be able to share pics of the little darlin'/s. It's her first time so it's hard to tell just how many she'll have. Just when we were almost done weaning the other come some more!

So, I'll be back tomorrow with some news!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Thankful For Simple Blessings!

Happy Day All!

Yesterday, I managed to get to a bit, a very small bit of thrifting...and was going to post some of the cloth-goodness I was able to purchase...but instead, I spent the day outside working and inside doing laundry. It was so windy today! What a good day to get several loads of laundry on the line! The stuff dries in no time! It brought kite flying to mind. Quite enjoyable...but you know me...I REALLY LIKE doing laundry! I'll try to share photos tomorrow.

I did get to take a few outdoor photos today while meandering around with my Home-Sweet #1 Son chatting about all the work there is to do this year around here. He's getting married in September, you know. They're trying to learn a bunch of things that will be useful for them throughout their married journey. She wants to learn handiwork, seed planting, canning...etc... They want to learn about caring for animals, and 9 of the Dixie Rainbow chicks I bought last week are theirs. I figured I couldn't go wrong at 50 cents a chick!

I'm not going to bore you with a bunch of chatting tonight, I'll share some photos I took outside today instead.  It was a lovely day even if it was windy. I enjoyed walking around with my son planning projects. We're going to be busy working AND getting ready for a wedding! This will not be a boring year for sure!

Blueberry Holes All Ready To Go!

Son #1 said he'd do it...and he did it! Notice how sandy our soil is. About a foot of topsoil and then pure river bottom sand. Not very nutritious for many plants, but blueberries don't mind bad soil, they love acid. Our yard used to be mostly pine trees, so we should be good and acid-y for them.

Pretty Bees Working In The Sun

Coming In For A Landing and  Communicating

Amazing...God's Handiwork!!! Awesome!! Notice How Fuzzy They Are!

Part of our livestock and livelihood is bees. Home-Sweet Husband keeps hives here and at a local farm. They provide beautiful dark honey for us and for many people each year. We already have orders for this year's honey...and it's not even harvested yet! It's in high demand!

This Is Lightning - He's A Proud Papa This Year!

Look at this handsome young Nigerian Dwarf buck! Home-Sweet Son #2 was astounded at how Amish looking his beard is! He's sweet too, not too rammy. He was one of the first kids to be born here two years ago. He's grown into a mighty fine buck! As I was walking past him I noticed he had hay on his head. He likes to use his horns to break up his morning hay flake. Silly boy! He smiles pretty for the camera too! What a ham!!!

He's Got A Wonderful Smile!

Flowering Quince Waking Up From A Long, Hard Winter

I have been checking on this quince for weeks now. Watching the buds get larger and larger. I was thrilled today when I went over to check it and saw buds and tiny leaves! Last year it even had one fruit on it . I think you can make quince jelly with the fruit from flowering quince. So pretty!

Well, that's a bit of my photo walk today. I was especially delighted and praised God to see the quince leaves out and the flower blossoms! I have been checking them for weeks! I like this photo and am going to send it off to my niece Alissa to make a new Spring header for me. She does a great job!

Now that Spring has arrived, we're going to be very busy doing many Home-Sweet Things! If we get to finish half of what we have planned, we'll be accomplishing much! There will be lots of hole digging for fenceposts, some butchering lessons, planting lessons and landscape things to figure out. In all our plans though we must say...'if the Lord wills'. It should be a very productive year!

Praise God for each day we have to see and appreciate the small blessings He gives. Take joy in each moment and breathe a prayer of thanksgiving for Our Heavenly Father gives us many things to enjoy, if we take the time to notice them! Thank you Father! Amen

What small blessings were you thankful for today at your Home-Sweet?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Edible Landscaping

What do you think about edible landscaping? About Permaculture/Permanent Agriculture?

I cannot remember where I heard it, but I once read gardener's quote that said, "If you still have grass, your garden is too small." ...or something like that. The point is, why do we have a lawn over a garden? Who created lawn and what's the point? It makes work that does not produce anything lasting or of any value and we get no real benefit from it in the long run. In fact, the work in maintaining lawn is never ending (and sometimes causes pride and envy!).

In my opinion, if you're going to spend time and energy keeping something, why not grow food? There are so many things that can be grown that are edible and ornamental...way prettier than grass! And more useful too!

These days, when people are stressed out and running ragged, it makes sense to spend a bit of time each day relaxing in the garden. If gardening is done right, it is not a chore, it is therapy! It's good for the spirit and soul. It gives one time to ponder and the benefits are not only invisible...they reap fruits and vegetables! It's a win-win deal!

What about growing food and helping reduce dependence on the grocery store?  You know right where your food came from AND the bonus to your pocketbook is a help too!

God started the world with a garden for people. The world has moved far away from what God has intended, yet there has been a surge these past years to return to the agrarian lifestyle. If the agrarian lifestyle is not possible where you live, you can still garden. If you live in a city and have a balcony, you can garden. Hey, they even sell countertop gardens for apartment dwellers who have no balcony or dirt access!

Gardening, and turning your lawn into a productive piece of land is also great for the children/grandchildren of the family. It is an opportunity to spend much time together. Children learn the benefit of each one putting in his labor for the blessing of all. It is a chance to pass on the wisdom and knowledge one generation has acquired to the next generation. 

This is my goal in my little acre this year. To take the spaces that are bare, where nothing is growing, and turn it into a garden that will keep us alive. Perennial and annual. Not just to fill in spaces, but to make things work together as pleasing to the eye, yet having a purpose beyond eye candy!

So, you will find me talking about this quite a bit this year as I work at changing things around here. It's going to take time, there will be a lot of physical labor. In the end though, it will be well worth it.

Are you ready to make the necessary changes in your Home-Sweet landscape to create a sustainable spot of earth for your family? It is possible, and everyone working together teaches many lessons. Life lessons that cannot be learned on TV or video games! Take the cannot be done all at once...but it can be done!

 Praise God for the opportunity to take His earth and be productive and creative and all the while be a blessing to our own family as well as others. This is a bit of what one-anothering is all about!