Tag Archives: inspiration

Travels and lessons

2 Feb

The Lord has been good to us.  He is always good, but through my human eyes sometimes I perceive Him as good when a desire is filled, or a trial has been put behind me..

Oh how faithless I am, but He is always faithful.

2015 was a huge year, so huge I hardly had time to chronicle it.  2016 started off with a trip to Florida and a much needed surgery for my husband… A trial and a gift..sometimes the trial shadowed the gift..

While we were gone my adopted mother fell, had emergency surgery, and is now in a nursing home, the very last place she ever wanted to be.  A trial, a sore trial, my heart breaks for her, but rejoices in her sweet spirit and her resignation to the Lord of her life..She continues to teach me as she goes through her trials..

Airboat ride with very generous friends..a desire of a life time..any one remember Flipper???  Time discovering with family..home education at it’s best…and time reconnecting with family..Joys..beauty..

The richness in life is contained in the relationships, in the giving of oneself to others..sharing your hearts, joys, sorrows, fears, victories..

Reminds me of a favorite hymn:

When we walk with the Lord in the light of His Word

what a glory He sheds on our way.

When we do His good will, He abides with us still and with ALL who will trust and obey..

The light of His word..

Love the Lord your God with all your heart soul mind and strength, and Love your neighbor as yourself..

I have always wanted to be accepted, to be loved no matter what..God loves me..and in giving love to others, I have received much much more than I have given..

The Love of the Father is manifested in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us..Such love..such love

But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8

first was from my heart, where His Spirit has graciously taken up residence, and the second is the actual, word for word, from the King James version of the Holy Bible.

I ramble..but that happens when I am filled with wonder..

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Victoria has been sewing some new creations..

2 Oct

This was one of my favorites to design..When this fabric came it was exciting. I started and Victoria came up with the details on the bodice and sleeves.  She has an eye for detail.

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Here are some peeks at others we have done this fall.  Been incorporating more knits this fall.. Organic knit from Monaluna..with a little lace splashed on..

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Then, a full skirt with lace and a lined lace knit top, identical to the mommy’s top in above photos

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We also did a little Christmas dress..

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It has been so long..6 months..so much has happened..Babies born at church, summer travels, and now home schooling in full swing..

This year I am more intensely a teacher at our school.  More involved sharpening the children’s skills..

Victoria is doing the bulk of the sewing and Olivia the bulk of the book work and customer relations..

But, we all get a chance in the sewing room, and we all have our hand in the design and the decisions..It has been a journey.. We have been at this since my Ezra was 3 months old and in November he will be 7!! That is a long journey.. Not over yet, the girls have the equivalent of a college education in fashion design, garment construction, textiles, merchandising, self-employment, and home economics..

It amazes me what hard work and perseverance can accomplish..

Our family is taking a different direction, and it is good to see how in all labor there is profit..as the Lord says in His word.

Not always monetary, but surely lasting..

Here are a few custom dresses, designed and made for a little mother up in Michigan

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So thankful to God for His precious Son, Jesus Christ, who saves us from our sin and ourselves and gives us gifts and talents to share with others..So thankful for the never ending work of the Holy Spirit in our lives..refining us..and growing us..and giving us the desire to be more like Him..

Always want to give God the honor and credit..So many verses in the Bible are key to my heart..But one stands out today..

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…With out Him, we can do nothing..He is the beginning and the end of everything.. John 15:5 in the Bible.

Too much to comprehend, but so beautiful and comforting..

Looking forward to having a little more time to do some more blogging! 🙂

A vacation..a retreat..a story..

6 Mar

This past January the Lord blessed our family with a vacation..I flew down to Florida with a friend and they followed on the weekend..We were able to be away from all the work at our house..with 2 family businesses and a little farmette.

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We got to stay with my friend for a week, visit with my sister in law, and then a very dear retired couple offered us their condo for a few days..

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It was so needed, our family had not been on vacation for 7 years!

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Many of us were blessed with rest and relaxation..

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but I wanted to record God’s blessing to me..

For many years, I have wanted to go on a retreat and just be alone with God..with finances and responsibilities that just has not been possible.

This was a retreat in a different kind of way..

The Lord allowed me to meet 2 very dear ladies..that both spoke into my life and were a source of reconnecting with some of my dormant heart desires..they both have very close walks with the Lord, and my walk has been a busy walk the last 7 years..

Another way He drew near was through the girl’s art teacher from Florida, who we got to visit with for a couple hours..a loving, peaceful, adoptive soul..She drew me in to the most ministering hug!!! God knows our every need..As a mama I get lots of hugs, but they are different..This hug was from my Father, my Daddy..and she touched me in the deep places of my heart with love and acceptance..no strings..no expectations..

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Of course there was sun and warmth in the weather but God is my most urgent need..without Him life is empty and meaningless..I just wanted to Thank Him and to reminisce as the days are long and cold and my heart grows weary in the daily tasks and struggles..P1150684

The other night as I was awake in the middle of the night He reminded me with this verse in Galatians chapter 6 verse 9..  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.

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He is with those that seek Him, that call on Him, that NEED Him..Those who put their trust in Him will not be ashamed..

He is my Daddy and I am asking Him to teach me to trust Him more..

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When I re-read Galatians as I write this I am moved to record that without Jesus’s sacrifice I could not say God is my Daddy..Oh Thank you Jesus for dying for me and making me able to call your Father, my Father..Thank you for adopting me..Thank you for accepting me..Thank you for promising that if I am not weary in well doing..I will reap if I faint not..Thank you for ALL your promises…..Thank you for hope…

A family photo…

11 Jan

This past Christmas we were privileged, well 8 of us were privileged to sing in a choir directed by Miss Peggy on Christmas Eve at the Atwater Congregational Church in Atwater, Ohio…

While this is not our church, we have been attending hymn sings once a month on Thursday nights.  This church is 5 minutes from us and the people are so welcoming and sweet..coupled with the opportunity to sing hymns glorifying God and be in this beautiful historic church, it is soothing to the soul!

Back to Christmas Eve..I had Olivia bring her camera since we would all be in our choir attire and matching…hoping some obliging person would take a family photo of us!

Mr. W. from the choir knew that a talented, professional photographer was coming that night and he sent him home for his camera!  After the sweet service this dear man took our picture and here is how it came out..I am a mother to adults..they grow so fast!

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Thank you Mr. Swanson for the lovely photo and thank you Mr. W. for arranging it for us ♥

Victoria made the guys ties and the little boys especially like to match their daddy and their big brothers!

So thankful to all for the picture and the opportunity to sing in a choir!!

Learning a new skill…

16 Jun

I’m learning a new skill…

Take life as it comes…

This is so foreign to me, but the Lord, through my health has ordained it.

Once upon a time there was a girl who took life by the horns and tamed it for her self.

At least she thought she did.  She ordered her world.  She was what my dear 92 year old friend calls a “go getter”.

One day the “go getter” got up and the go was gone!!!   But life was continuing to go on.

For the past 3 months that has been me.  Still running the house hold but a lot of times from a sitting position or laying.  Instead of leading the charge.

There have been times of activity.  Like my morning walk.  I go out early with one or two of my children and we talk and walk 2 miles.  Good for the heart and soul.   Some days that was it.

I have puttered in the garden.  Wednesdays I hang the laundry out.  Thursdays I cook dinner.

Our sewing business was very busy in March and April, then in May it dropped considerably and this month I would consider slow.  It is not bad, just slow.  As I consider this I see that March and April toasted me.  Not only did we sew, I taught some of the children’s school.  And managed the house hold.

For what ever reason my body didn’t hold up to this regime.  So, this week especially has been a humbling, not very pretty experience for myself and my husband and children.

Last Sunday was our  Sunday to sing at the nursing home.  I stayed home and rested.

Monday broke and after a long Sunday like that everyone was tired and grumpy to put it mildly 🙂

I am on Jury duty this week and next so the stress of wondering if they were going to call me in was pulling at my mind.

I looked at the books and we had 8 orders this week.  That is good, but so tame that it didn’t feel like a lot.  Excepting one that was a custom dress for a little girl with a feeding tube.  First time with the pattern made it a learning experience and it was slow going because I have been weak and very tired.

Yoke dress with matching headband

Rosette pin on collar

Last Monday, when our normal school was finished, normal being categorized as the main subjects completed and just my high school boys needing to finish their biology, and my middle school children are going to do 1/2 a math lesson all summer to keep sharp.   Normal school being finished I thought we could do some fiber art!  We have an embroidery machine and a quilt pattern for a beautiful “Prayer Garden” quilt.  So, we worked out our fabrics and our layout and the children and I have been stitching blocks, which we will sew together and then quilt.  The boys are all doing this also, as it involves a machine 🙂

So, those quilt blocks happened through the week.  I’ll do a post on it when it is done.

Friday we had a birthday party and the girls made these skirts for twin girls at our church…

As I am writing this I am embroidering the last of the blocks to make into the quilt.  It has been nice to be able to do something while my strength has been low.

This week seemed to happen to me instead of me planning it.   It is Saturday, I see that through mercy we have completed another week.  We are getting ready to enjoy the Sabbath.  One child  is showered, one is showering 9 to go.  Dinner is just about ready.  My husband will be home from his little Saturday job soon.  The little boys bath will be next and we’ll start getting our clothes ready to iron.

As I read over this to check for mistakes I see that the quilt blocks were a little much to put on us.  If I would have just let the children work at them a little at a time maybe over a month, it may have been more enjoyable.  But I see that I did drive that one.  The new skill of life happening isn’t easy to learn, but I know the sooner I learn it the more peaceful our home will be.

Lord, help me to receive life with thankfulness from your hands.  I want to learn to live for today, and not borrow from  tomorrow or moan over yesterday.  I am being very transparent here, my melancholy analyzing, has not been serving me this last few months, it has actually been doing me in!

If I can cast my cares on Him, because He cares for me and receive His sunshine or rain as in my best interest, because in truth it is in my best interest, because He loves me perfectly, I believe as my soul prospers in these truths, my body will begin to mend and prosper.  Cares, worries, and the might be’s are drying me up from the inside out.

Lord, forgive me for being blind to your truths and questioning your love for me in particular.  Somehow I believe you can love others so easily, but me??  I know in my mind you do, and I thank you for that, but in my heart, I really need you to make that real to me.

I know you hear and answer prayer.  Thank you.  Bless all your children.  Give them all a beautiful Sabbath day.  Help us to remember you and what your son Jesus did for us on that cross.  Make your love real to all our hearts.  Revive us and renew us!  Amen!

This is our garden, it takes each day as it comes…  my oldest son is our head gardener, he is making sure the plants are watered for tomorrow, it has been dry here.

Aren’t these snow pea blossoms beautiful?  The Bible says to consider the lilies how they grow, they don’t toil, and our heavenly Father cares more for us much more than them.  The same goes for  these sweet little pea blossoms.   Simple lessons, why so hard to learn and assimilate???

Singing…

15 Feb

The girl’s and I were asked to sing on Monday at a home school mom’s meeting…

I am not a singer!  I like to sing, my children on the other hand sing well and being from the same family their voices blend so nice!  It seems to be my job to lead out strong and keep things moving.  The Lord helped.  My hands were shaking so bad from being nervous.  The songs were intended to bring focus on the Lord and to prepare the mom’s to hear the message the speaker was bringing…so, why do I get nervous??  We want to do a good job right??  We don’t want to hurt people’s ears right??

Of course right!  It would be really great if my nerves would listen to my logic!!

Yesterday, we sang at the nursing home.  We were invited for their Valentines service.  That was so much easier!  The whole family went and my boys have some  great harmonizing skills!  I still lead out a lot and keep the timing, but the elderly just enjoy the music, it seems to soothe them!  Also, they love to see the little ones.  They just melt when they see the 3 year old and the 5 year old!

The singing helps with the blues and getting out and blessing others helps too.

We have some sewing coming in and that is a good thing.

We got photos from our photographer for our spring and summer line.  Wow! She really makes things look beautiful!

This dress is 100% tissue linen. It is white with cream rouche ruffles.  I just am old fashioned at heart!!  The new styles and color combo’s are fun but classic white, and natural fibers….well I just thought maybe someone out there might like this dress too!

I am blessed by this little girl’s infectious smile and sparkling eyes! 🙂  Enjoy!

Unfinished lists…

24 Sep

Sometimes, many times wrenches are thrown into our plans 🙂

Some of us can deal smoothly, and glide along with the new plan.  Some struggle.  I struggle.  Sometimes we get a wrench thrown in just when we need it, or we can see that this wrench is good in this situation.  Other times the wrench bonks us in the head, or the shin, or the gut, and it doesn’t feel good at all.  We can learn from all the wrenches if we have eyes to see and ears to hear!

I had a beautiful wrench this past Friday.  I got a call from a young mother at church who was in labor and had invited me to be present at her little ones birth.

Whoa, what a privilege!  A very privileged wrench!  The kind that there is no question of what you should do, you get going!!!  The older children were assigned younger children to watch and help with school.  The girl’s had to get a couple of sewing orders out.  I quickly did some top stitching on some things that had to go. Then I was on my way.  I wasn’t the only one invited there were 4 others.

It was a privilege to serve this courageous mother!  I have only been at my own births and I know it takes courage and mostly reliance on God’s promise to be with us always.

Pain

Dependence

Reliance

Faith

Crying out for Mercy

Receiving that Mercy

Crying out for Strength

Receiving that Strength

Enduring til the birth

Seeing that new soul that has been nurtured for 9 (really 10 months, 40 weeks)

Elation

Relief

Realization of the awesome trust you have been given

Thankfulness

Joy

Praise

Hope

God is beyond good, and how can we thank Him, or grasp, or realize, the incredible gift of working with Him, of being given a place in His master plan?

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it… Prov. 22.6

.. but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  Eph. 6:4b

And did not he make one? Yet had he the residue of the spirit. And wherefore one? That he might seek a godly seed. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.  Mal 2:15

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Gal. 6:9

I stand in awe of His Mercy, His Grace, His Power, His Sovereignty, His plan of redemption…

Unfinished lists? Wrenches? Or Blessings in disguise?