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Showing posts from May, 2011

Healthful Houseplants

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Did you know that houseplants are one of themost healthful and beautiful additions you have in your home?  It's true.  And NASA researchers confirm that "house plants can purify and rejuvenate the air within our houses and workplaces, safeguarding us all from any side effects connected with prevalent toxins such as formaldehyde, ammonia and also benzene". 

Isn't that incredible?  God's creation is indeed so good! (And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good. Gen 1:12)

One of my favorite benefits of keeping houseplants all around my home is that they breathe in our carbon dioxide and give off healthy oxygen to the indoors. That's quite a wonderful exchange, don't you think?  So I love to keep lots of green houseplants around for their beauty and health benefits. 

My favorite is the philodendron because it's so easy to care…

Timely Tips Tuesday

Introducing Timely Tips Tuesday!  Each Tuesday, I will share a handy household tip that will focus on all aspects of keeping the home. 

Tiny Tasks

If you have growing children (and all the children I know are always growing!) review your roster of chores frequently and delegate more.  Here are some jobs even toddlers can help with:

Putting trash into the waste basket.Emptying all the waste baskets into the main trash can once a week.Keeping the family pet's water bowl filled (a squirt bottle is least messy for a child still acquiring motor coordination skills).Feeding smaller mammals, birds, and fish -- just keep an eye on how they are doing.  It's wonderful training for the responsibilities of a more demanding pet like a dog.  Watch and advise; communicate your standards, offer praise for a job well done well -- but never "do it better" or redo what has been done if they just put their all into their work. (Such a tactic is better saved for a lazy child who didn'…

Ladies, Do What You Can

I thought I'd share a little story from a few years ago when I was at the grocery store check-out stand.  While the clerk rang up my order, I glanced down at my son (7 at that time) whose eyes were fixed and staring to the side. As I followed his gaze my heart literally sank within me - there was a GQ magazine cover showing a soft p*rn image of prominent hollywood celebrity. I was SO upset.  I quickly brushed his glance in the opposite direction, turned the filthy magazine over and we left.  (If it had happened today, I probably would've spoken up about my offense which, I suppose, would have made a "scene".)


But I went home and strait away wrote the manager of the store and corporate headquarters with my ugly experience in their store.  I explained my longtime patronage and loyalty to that store and that if something was not done about this, I would gladly take my business elsewhere.  I warned that I would also tell my many friends and family to do the same.


To my del…

Peace With Estrangement

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There are many people today dealing with estrangement from loved ones. So just how should a Christian deal with it when it comes to their door?  

It's a delicate issue because no two situations are alike. But for a Christian, we can deal with it the same way we deal with every other issue - we must turn to the Lord and seek understand and wisdom from his Holy Bible. The answers we can find by searching the scriptures bring far more understanding and comfort than any other avenue I can fathom.


Being estranged from someone you love is a bewildering and painful experience.  Yet in the midst of the pain, there is an odd peace.  

Imagine that you were suddenly handed molten hot coals. Would you hold them while your flesh sizzled and burned or would you release them? I don't think anyone in that situation would hesitate to release them. 

What is the resulting feeling?  

Immediate relief. 

Peace. 

So it sometimes is with certain relationships when no other avenue for peace can be found exce…

Delicious Spaghetti Sauce

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This is the best homemade spaghetti sauce I've ever tasted.  After having it at my brother's house a few times, I finally asked for the recipe. (The men in my family are really good cooks!) 






Delicious Spaghetti Sauce


Ingredients
1 tbsp Oregano1 tsp Basil1 tsp Thyme1 tbsp Parsley1 small bay leaf1/2 tsp Rosemary1/4 tsp Nutmeg1 tsp Sea Salt1 tsp course Black Pepper2 tbsp Garlic Powder1 tbsp Onion Powder1/4 tsp Crushed Red Pepper (optional)

2 tbsp Sugar2 tbsp Parmesan Cheese1 lb sausage (italian or regular)
Note: "Italian Chicken Sweet" sausage from Sprouts Market deli counter is awesome.1 medium Onion finely chopped3 heaping tbsp chopped garlic3 and 1/2 tbsp Olive Oil1/4 cup Red Wine30 oz. Tomato Sauce30 oz. Tomato Puree (or "crushed tomatoes")Add sausage and 1/2 tbsp Olive Oil to large pot over medium heat.  Break sausage up into crumbly pieces, stirring frequently just until meat is no longer pink.  Add chopped onion and garlic, and continue to stir.  Heat unt…

My son's Essay "My Idea of a Good Meal"

Today I received an unexpected little blessing from my oldest son.  While doing work in his Grammar and Composition, he was asked to write a short composition.  I was busy helping his brother when he must have placed the paper in my stack of papers at the dining room table where we sit during school.  I looked down and read his paper.  Keeping in mind that he's a real boy and not given to being really mushy, I knew how much love was in it and immediately teared up because it was so sweet.


Here is his composition word for word:
"My Idea of a Good Meal" by (son's name)

        "Some people might say a good meal comes from Grandma.  Some might name The Olive Garden, or so-and-so's Pizza Place.  Maybe a good meal springs from an heirloom recipe handed down from this ancestor or that great-great-grandmother. To such suggestions I calmly hold up my hand and shake my head.  I declare proudly that I have a good, good meal at least every day in my own house, in nearly ev…

Back Issues Continued

I am still dealing with pretty much constant back pain and it's going on 4 weeks now.  The sacro wedgy is helping some, although I can't say it's "cured" me in any way.  But it does seem to offer relief, however short lived. 


I am crying out to the Lord all day long for his healing touch. It's really been a challege to take care of my family while feeling so debilitated.  Frequent rests are becoming common.  I would probably see a doctor, holistic preferably, but our finances really don't allow for that right now and often times they can't help anyway. 


I am doing all I can to learn about the back's anatomy and the ligaments and joints that are involved in back pain.  So far, I'm thinking it could be my left sacroilliac joint that might be the trouble.
According to wikipedia: "the ligaments of the sacroiliac joint become loose during pregnancy due to the hormone relaxin; this loosening allows widening of the pelvic joints during the birthi…

A Day in the Kitchen

When finances are especially tight, I spend a good portion of one day stocking our kitchen with a few homemade foods.  The first thing I do is look through my pantry and frige and see what I've got to use.  I try to always keep a stock of pastas, rice, beans, canned veggies, chick peas and flour so that I can make wholesome foods from scratch for my family for a fraction of the cost of store bought items.


Today I decided I had the ingredients on hand to make homemade baked beans, a cheesecake, some alfalfa sprouts, hummus dip, hamburger buns (to make burgers that night) and salsa. 


I started with the one that takes the longest - the beans.  I sorted, rinsed, and cooked 2 lbs of dry northern white beans to start a big batch of baked beans.  Once the beans were on a simmer, I started the alfalfa seeds to sprout. 


Next I made dough for the whole wheat hamburger buns and set the bowl in a warm corner on my counter top for the first rise. 


For the cheesecake, I used my vita-mix to make a …

Back Pain Help

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When I find a good thing, I like to pass it on. In my search for back pain relief, I came across the Sacro-Wedgy.  It's a funny little gadget that I bought on amazon based on the rave reviews and I think it is very helpful.  You just lay flat on the ground and place it under your sacrum (thus the name "sacro-wedge") for 20 minutes and relax.  It raises the sacrum slightly off the ground which allows the surrounding muscles to relax.  
For the back pain that I have, it produces measurable relief. (Btw, I don't sell these or anything, I just am impressed with how well these work.) Using this little gadget with a combination of icing my back today has helped me a lot!