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Contributing To Other Blogs <3

So here is a little note to let you know I am still around.  It has been a mild and cozy winter.  The new cat in the family seriously adds to the cozy factor as only a snuggly, soft, purr happy kitty can.  Been cross country skiing a lot more this year and enjoying so much time at home, organizing and trying to stream line the family life, if you will 🙂

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A New Home

Garnet is setting up a new blogging home for me!! It is well under way and should be ready to launch SOON!

Our Advocate

Tonight I partook in a special service about the ascension of Christ.  Although it is a traditional Thursday night service, that has been celebrated by the organized church for a long time, this is my first time attending such a service.  The gathering of the Body tonight reminded me of my awe; awe at the fact that we have an advocate before the all consuming fire we call God.

Young Hunters and Pirates

Be sure to click this link for 
more info on the story behind the stories of my childhood.
(The Creek)

Watching my children create an entire pirate kingdom on our patio brought to mind a favorite imaginary world I had shared with my younger brother.

(Mopsy and two spring babies.)

I can remember pretending to be hunters.  We would get the perfect stick and stalk the goats through the brush (my parents had a goat farm and we had endless games involving the live stock).  One afternoon though we expanded the game, thanks to my brother getting his hands on a pellet rifle.  Now don’t worry about the goats, we where smart enough to know shooting them was a quick way into my folks bad books.  We decided, instead, to travel down river and seek out an ever worthy prey…squirrels and chipmunks.

The faithful orange Coleman canoe was loaded up, life jackets clipped on and we pushed off.  The river was actually a creek that ran through the bottom of our small farm property.  It was a very healthy water way, leading to many lakes and even a small set of rapids.  Smooth flowing water, riddled with weeds just below the surface.  It twists and turns, sleepily,  around beds of floating weeds.  Walled in by endless trees and bedrock, it is a true northern shield water way. 

(The Munro Dock)

I was guide.  We sought out signs and sounds that meant our game was near by.  I would let my brother off on land to do the hunting.  As faithful guide I waited till I hear a shot and then let out a good ‘yahoo’ for his efforts.  Never did he come back with proof of kill.  Considering how many times we repeated this process I highly doubt he even came close to tagging a tree rodent of any kind.

It kept us incredibly busy and happy… till Mom honked the horn three times…. that was our get back home call.  We where usually ready for the honk as our imaginative and wide wandering games often left us with healthy appetites.

My kids hunted down and buried treasure, fought the authorities and forced mates to walk the plank till supper; and they too ate well.

(My younger brother and I.)


Half the Batch (The Making of Bread Process)

Directly below is the summery from the first post.  To read part one please link to the first post RIGHT HERE.

(Home made bread goes with everything!)
“Tired kinda day but need to make bread so I halved the batch and will work on four loaves.  Just didn’t feel up to wrestling eight loaves all day.  I had good company, my three year old is always happy to help with baking.
So, for fun, I decided to try capturing step by step shots of the process I  carry out weekly. “
1. Dough is done so let it rise and beat it down (kneading it) about three or four times during the course of the day.
(Ready to rise.)
2.  Once it has had a few rounds of rising and kneading, you oil the pans (if they aren’t seasoned already).  These silver pans are my unseasoned ones (the seasoned ones have turned black).  My husband bought these lovely pans, for me, from a baking school in the States.
3. Dough is kneaded down for the last time then sliced into four lumps (since this is the half batch).
4.  Lumps are encouraged into loaf shapes.  I roll mine mostly.  It is done similarly to what you did when making snakes out of play dough as a child!
5. Loaves are placed in pans and again covered up is a cozy fashion.
6. They rise in about two hours. 
7. Pans of risen loaves of dough are put in 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.

8.  Once nicely golden they are popped out of their pans and set upon my cooling racks.  I then cover them with a damp tea towel.  This method, gleamed from my sister in laws Dutch mother (HELLO ANNA!), cools and keeps the bread from becoming too crusty.  My mother used to butter them, which is a delicious method to accomplish the same but I found got really messy with the amount of bread I make and with having to bag and freeze it as I do.

9. Step nine and ten are both very important.  Nine is to take a minute and bask at the beautiful domestic treasure that is fresh home made bread.  Pat yourself on the back 🙂

10. Step ten, is credited to my husband… for Pete sake don’t freeze all the loaves you just made!  Put one aside to be sampled immediately and to be enjoyed untouched by the freezer.

11. Once cooled nicely bag them.

12. Put the majority of your labor in the freezer to be sure it is stretched all week.  It thaws beautifully and is very nice if bagged well and placed in a large chest freezer.

So there we are, managed to make this into a twelve step process too.  From dough to bread, ta-da!  And now REPEAT, if you have a bread loving family as large as mine you will have to be faithful at this weekly (twice weekly when halved) process to keep your family amply provided for in the toast and sandwich department.  Have a beautiful day!

Squeeze The Tomato

(What a stunning river it was that day, so calm… at surface level…)

I don’t know if I can ever comfortable write out all that happened when our neon was totaled.  A big truck pulled out in front of us and made an accordion out of our little car.  So many people where there for us, little miracles where pieced together after the fact, and although it shouldn’t have been so we where all okay… physically.

A conference speaker said ‘When the tomato is squeezed you see what was inside.’

When I sat physically paralyzed by shock, after the accident, I received one of the most amazing miracles of my life.  I assumed the worst and yet was praying, with seemingly no will power of my own, over and over and over ‘Thank you Jesus.’… I didn’t feel abandoned in that moment, I realized I didn’t let go of my faith when I thought it was over and I didn’t feel alone… far from it… I have never felt so wrapped up in my saviors love, so secure in my eternal salvation and so THANKFUL for Jesus having me!

This was years ago, before we had our last two kids.  Where is my heart day to day?  When the big events aren’t happening how is it doing?  Am I devoted to him, unconditionally as I live my pretty undramatic regular life?  Am I devoted to him when my undramatic life gets a good dose of drama or trauma?  We are called to trust.  When we do we soon discover all these kinds of questions are answered in him and by him, because Jesus takes care of it… if we can just trust.

Proverbs 17:3
(American Standard)
“The refining pot is for silver, 
and the furnace for gold; 
But Jehovah trieth the hearts”.  

We will be refined and purified, through out this life, by our Lord.  We can’t do any of the cleansing.  This is the very reason Christ came!  He is our doctor and wants our sickness!  The hard things in life reveal where we are at in the process but they also can be used by the Lord to burn away our impurities, as gold is purified by the furnace.

Jeremiah 17:9-10
(The Message)
 “The heart is hopelessly dark and deceitful,
   a puzzle that no one can figure out.
But I, God, search the heart
   and examine the mind.
I get to the heart of the human.
   I get to the root of things.
I treat them as they really are,
   not as they pretend to be.”

We are sick.  Often we can drum up guilt over what we see coming up from our heart and more so from what we know is there, masked with our performances.  We are afraid of what we don’t know about ourselves.  We crush ourselves with guilt when we fall… AND YET we can ask the Lord into our temptation instead of wait for the fall.  We can let him in to examine the darkest store rooms of our heart, to discover what we don’t even know about.  If we would just stop fighting our deceitful heart on our own and stop punish ourselves with guilt, neither have benefit… instead surrender our pride, pride in our abilities and strength, and hand the heart over to the Creator.

The enemy wants us to believe we are beyond hope when our dark recesses are exposed.  He doesn’t want us to allow the Lord to clean it out.  He is a liar.  Trust in your Savior!

Psalms 3 1-4
(American Standard)
1Jehovah, how are mine adversaries increased! Many are they that rise up against me.
 2 Many there are that say of my soul, There is no help for him in God. Selah
 3 But thou, O Jehovah, art a shield about me; My glory and the lifter up of my head.
 4 I cry unto Jehovah with my voice, And he answereth me out of his holy hill. Selah 
So I would like to punish myself, on a regular basis, for how sloppy my devotion to him looks each and everyday, but I need to stop working on things in my own strength and learn the lesson I was taught in that car accident… Jesus knows all about all the dark and all the deceit in my heart.  Still he faithfully holds my heart, fixes it, and loves me.
REMEMBER God is not fair, he is merciful!
Jesus is Jehovah’s mercy to us!
AND JESUS always honors repentance!

P.s. The tomato metaphor and other inspired portions of this post I gleamed from the teachings at conferences put on by SPOKEN WORD MINISTRIES (teacher being Boyd Hopkins).  LINK to find out more about this excellent discipleship focused ministry.


Most Know What Kony2012 Is

Are enough of us aware that there are also people with other options that we can support, who have been working for these children for years? There are places we can get involved that put forgiveness and reconciliation on the table as active peaceful tools to fight with.
YEARS AGO I heard about Kony through a missionary group that was reaching out to his child soldiers and seeing results with the offer of forgiveness. I therefore feel compelled to share this link my husband found through a Christian brother’s page. There is always a peaceful option.

Moose Jaw Treasures

 I enjoy finding treasures with character, and I found character in Moose Jaw INDEED.  Feel free to check out the link to my post on our girl’s weekend RIGHT HERE!

Yes the phone in the photo above works.  This candle stick corded phone is an original.  Something this special deserves to be used so I have it set up in the kitchen and have put the cordless phones in other locations.

Winter is a fact of life here so why not cozy up with style?!  I was going to buy the pink cup cake mittens but thought these owl ones where way more mature (wink).  I do so like owls!

 So not a huge hall from my last trip, but all very special.  Most of the items where found in a cute little collectible antique place that I will have to visit every time I return to that wonderful little city called Moose Jaw Saskatchewan.

Happy treasure hunting!


Happy Valentines!

Garnet surprised me with this valentines gift last night, right at midnight.  It was a surprise because he doesn’t do this sort of thing.  I giggled as he shared how a concerned coworker had took him under his wing and reminded him about Valentines.  He spotted the perfect and unique gift for me last week in our favorite shop and had to share it.

It is a South American tea but also a style of tea drinking all its own so we are very excited to share it together.  Drank with a metal straw, that works as the tea dispenser/filter, in a hollowed out gourd and shared from the same cup.  It is packed with tea so should be good and strong.

This version of mate is supposed to taste like chocolate, have the kick of coffee but is a tea.  It is said to have superior health benefits to other hot drinks and other teas specifically.

We are such a couple of crazy and dedicated tea drinkers!

To have a closer look, or to order you own, link HERE FOR MORE DETAILS!


Doily Appreciation

(A favourite doily from Grandma)

While the doily may not be in general a in trend style around the house I have noticed they are popping up everywhere else. I have seen some cute versions of them framed in stylish ways, necklaces with tiny crochet doilies and one of my favorite trendy scarves is basically one long doily.

Thanks to my Grandma Hicks I have a fabulously large collection of them now. I love presenting them on surfaces, in their traditional use, but I have plans to frame some pinned to pretty wall paper and I found a fabulous craft there you turn your sweet doilies into adorable dressy collar complete with pearl buttons.

Thanks to Grandma for these handmade treasures and I sure hope I can get over to learn how to crochet from you soon!

Fab ideas LINKED HERE,
and a necklace idea HERE,
OH and this sweet collar HERE,
More with a bracelet idea HERE,
and a scarf idea HERE!!