Archives for category: Crafting

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Share your moment here and look for others at SouleMama.


Sunday is a day of rest that doesn’t often seem restful. There are still dishes to wash, emergency laundry to manage, and food to be made that contributes to the first two. But for this moment of this day, I am resting on the deck knitting. Ahhhh


I have a lot to say today. Several economic/political articles with my commentary, recipes for Easter and camping, and an observation about life in general are all floating in my head eagerly waiting their turn in not-so-much of a line to escape my clouded brain. But I don’t have the energy to give them the attention they need today. I am still struggling to get to the treadmill and my time is running out!


An energetic morning of tennis with the younger four followed by shopping, an absolutely fantastic warm and balanced lunch thrown together, and laundry management (it’s been a beautiful day to hang the clothes outdoors!), and helping Kelly Mae finish sewing her first garment. That’s been my day. And lethargy this afternoon that I am having a difficult time escaping.


So, there’s what little I am allowing to seep out just now. Check back with me tomorrow. It’ll be Maundy Thursday and so I am going to begin my travel towards the holiest of holy days to me. That translates to: I’ll probably be gentler than usual.



This post from Frugally Sustainable begins with this quote:

“We don’t need to increase our goods nearly as much as we need to scale down our wants. Not wanting something is as good as possessing it.” – Donald Horban

Quality in life is far greater than quantity in life. In my opinion…


I am sitting here on the deck knitting a new project and feeling the sun, hearing the birds, frogs, and bumblebees, and watching linens occasionally lilt up in a rare drift of breeze.

Thinking about my blog, I thought, “I will post those economic and political links and commentaries today.” Then I remembered this would be my 500th post. And it’s a Friday. Maybe I could keep it light.

Well, not so light. Because my life matters to me. And that’s ultimately what this blog is about. Not about my split personalities (ahem friend from Rockford) but rather about the fact that I am not one-sided. I am not just a mom. I am not just a home birther. I am not just an extended breastfeeder. I am not just a natural healther. I am not just a home learner. I am not just the most fantastic friend ever. I am always and first a wife.

I believe in live and let live while keeping in mind that taking from others at gunpoint is not letting live. It’s theft.

I believe in freedom from religion and freedom from a tyrannical government.

I believe in people. I believe every person can do anything s/he wants if s/he really wants to do it.

I believe my Husband is the head of our family and our home.

I believe God is the Father and Jesus Christ is His Son who He gave for my eternal life.

That’s what I believe.

I am grateful for this format to scatter my seed onto this ground. I know that much of it has fallen to the wayside and never sprouted. I also know some of it has sprouted. I give that credit to the dirt that was made before me.

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Share your moment here and look for others at SouleMama.


I had a very pin-able post planned for yesterday. The kind of fantastic walk-one-through like this one.

And then I made me check myself and now I am simply too exhausted from the emotion of yesterday to care about putting together a Very Pinteresting-ly worthy post. So here it is, from my phone, in the last remaining 17 minutes of quiet today.

I had some folks interested in trying my elderberry syrup. So I made some. And then I wanted to label it so the folks would know what they were enjoying.

Well, I am not a big consumer-driven person. So I used what I had on hand to “cute-en up” the jars.


I had some labels I’d bought with a big bag of miscellaneous other office supplies from The Scrap Exchange some time ago. I mean, a big bag for like $3. Awesome-ness! And I had the first clover garland I crocheted when I was trying to make the pattern. I also had some scrap papers from the Exchange that I used for jotting down ingredients and uses.

This is what I ended up with after labeling and cutting apart the garland:


Oh. Look at that. I took the pic with the jars turned around. Oh well.

The bags were set on the front porch for pick-up. I re-used gift bags that had often already been reused… Some were delivered. It was a good thing.


An update: for those (named Jenna😉 ) that wanted to know how the kids were when I arrived home… They were not far from where I left them. I cuddled them. I reassured them. But I kept on the game face. When I went to the treadmill, I heard them. Over the noise of the treadmill and the TV. When I showered after, I heard them. On the other side of the house, behind two doors, and over the noise of the water. Mind you, they are not fighting. They are picking. Bickering. Just being ugly. So. In four minutes now they’ll wake. And I’ll continue on attempting to guide and direct these sweet souls. Because its my responsibility. Not the government’s.

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Share your moment here and look for others at SouleMama.


{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Share your moment here and look for others at SouleMama.

My whole day was a {this moment}. I am breaking the “rule” and sharing bits of it with lots of pictures rather than one picture with no words. Just because.

I made yogurt for the first time. It is delicious. Here is the recipe.


I rinsed the sprouts…


…then I fed the sourdough sponge.


The daily bread was made.


Then another sourdough recipe tried. It is beautiful and very good but does not taste like sourdough so I will not share the recipe.


It was a little after 9a when I made the bed…


…and then tried to dry my linens outside in 60mph gusts.


For our camping scout, our day of horsemanship for the older girls, and a day in the Capitol with the littlest ones, I made jerky…

…and granola bars


…and chocolate protein balls.


And then I packed the scout’s in reusables that can be lost.


I packed the girls’ reusables (an with a napkin).



I packed the snack box for our family that will be only four for many hours.


The pizza dough for the evening was mixed, kneaded, and left to rise.


Then it was 12:30 and time to serve lunch.

While the children ate lunch, I mended a pair of ski bibs that a friend would be by to borrow. I should have taken a photo. It wasn’t a bad 3-corner tear repair.

Then, with a sweet 7 year old beside me working on his double-plus-one facts, I knitted past the first decrease row.


My sweet friend came by to borrow the bibs. While she was here she shared some sad news. I am still waiting to hear an update…

Then I knitted some more and we worked on doubles-plus-ones some more.

It was 330p.

I shuttled my scout to his camp out where he set his tent just before the rain.

And what a rain it was. I was on the interstate and had I been able to get onto the shoulder, I would have. I was in tears by the time it broke. I do not like driving in the rain.

After working with a student to the west, I headed home. While reflecting on my day and listening to my iPod, I thought the tune

Sister, you got it good.

Then… This songplayed next.

I drove the rest of the way home in dry silence.

Here it is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of the time when I am called to focus on Christ’s suffering for me.

Growing up, I knew very little about Ash Wednesday and what I knew was from my Catholic mom. But we primarily attended a non-denominational Bible chapel that mostly shunned “church” order and aerobics.

As a teen living away from home, a college student, and an adult I have attended and visited churches of many Christian denominations and faiths, not just Christian. Some churches I attended only once, some several times, a couple too many years. All of those different experiences have only concreted my belief that religion is indeed a man made activity.

And that’s OK.

It’s OK because I am confident that I am only responsible for myself. I am only responsible for my own faith and the expression of that faith. I am not responsible for my Husband’s salvation. I am not responsible for any of the children’s salvation. I am not responsible for the salvation of family, friends, or strangers. Only my own.

I want to raise up our children in the way I believe right. One way is through awareness of and activities within the Lenten period. Not meaningless “giving up” choices. But in meaningful action of truthfulness. And that means building with them a greater awareness that their actions to choose are their own.


Now some housekeeping…

Last week’s posts regarding food benefits are still floating around pretty strongly. And that’s a really good thing to help keep the conversation going.

Thank you to my local folk for promoting and leading to more elderberry requests. I am grateful!

And the snow… It came. We played. And just a bit after lunch it was gone and we were outside playing and relaxing in the snow-less sunshine. The perfect snow.













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