Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Learning, part 3

One layer down, my thought life has a lot of progress to make.... I have always struggled with self-doubt, and worry about others opinions. I often bunch ideas off a friend or my hubby, but I realize that in the end I need to Seek the Lord in all these things. I won't make the wrong call if I'm looking to Him for every little choice. But I'm  getting ahead of myself, for each layer is built on the foundation below it.

In my soul is the Holy Spirit, God indwelling, giving direction and wisdom when we ask. I have been blessed to overflowing by His gifts. Last spring I hit bottom, struggling to relate to my husband, and feeling quite bankrupted in emotional energy, I asked a woman in my church to mentor me. While I felt my schedule was packed and one more thing would not fit, I started on the path of discipleship. Until that point my  training in this way had been limited to my mother's input and little bits of wisdom drawn from friends and books. Moments of peace in the Scripture were morsels of hope. But I wasn't making the time. I'd started so many books and not finished them. I started a Bible in a year program, and a blessing counting book with my 1,000 gifts friends. But the discipline wasn't there. With the addition of accountability that all changed. My mentor challenged me, and we began to memorize and read. We took an entire year to savor a book and to memorize passages each week. I shared my worries and, instead of fixing them for me, she took my hand and we carried them to the cross. Oh I have so much to learn, but I have come so far. When I am all tumult inside, I  can choose to process  and doubt, or hit my knees. So many times this year I have poured out the Scriptures in my heart awash with a flood of tears. How different each Scripture is, when framed in the circumstance of my trials.

In the mean time I'm as busy as ever. I completed two Awana T&T books and memorized 200 verses to do so. I've learned so much about my family, my schedule, my heart, but most importantly, my Savior. This foundation pushes up and strengthens my life. In turn I have had small opportunities to pour those words into others. I had felt completely inadequate to disciple another person, until I saw it for what it was. Leading others to Him, being filled with His Word, and being transformed in the process. Like water raining down on a mountain pools up and pours into the pools beyond, each overflowing to the next. The source is not the pool, but the One giving the water.  As my pool flows out I need to be filled again and again.

I am so thankful for the lessons He pours out into my life!

©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Learning a lot, part 2

Next layer, personal discipline... As we come along to out last few weeks of our school schedule, I reflect on the fact that we have never been this close to caught up this time of year. I'm sure part of that is due to no longer changing curriculum every 4-6 weeks as we did when we were on the crew. A good bit is due to my sister devoting a hour or two of her mornings to getting school going while I'm down at the PO sorting the village mail. Also, my kids are learning more of the value of independent study, which is one of my favorite by-products of homeschooling. I'm really enjoying our group subjects his year, as we do Apologa Science and America the Beautiful for history. We usually snuggle up on the couch and read together, and on some nicer days, on the trampoline outside.

-update-
We finished school! Friday the 3rd of May, right on schedule for the first time ever. What a great feeling! I had really worried my new job would get in the way, but the discipline of getting going every morning bright and early actually really helped us out. This year I had attempted to leave our sticker charts in lieu of assignment booklets, but everyone complained. The charts went up and a friend from church gave us a LOT of great stickers! It's been a great way to keep track of our progress, and all the stickers are filled in now.

To celebrate school finishing we had an ice cream party at home (due to chicken pox).

One layer down, my thought life has a lot of progress to make....

©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Monday, May 5, 2014

Lost in learning...

(written several weeks back and finally posting, that crazy here...)

In the past few weeks I've been learning a lot. Learning so much I haven't had time to share. I am so thankful to the Lord for putting people in my life who grow and stretch me in so many ways. I often have a deep thought (yes, at times) and think to myself, "Wow, I should explore that further in a blog post!" But time gets away from me and the next big lesson wipes me clean. So much is going on around here I rarely get time to sleep, let alone reflect for long. But today is different. I have a sinus infection. :P I'm stuck in a chair wearing a turtleneck, a jacket, and a blanket... and I'm shivering.  I'm coughing like mad and have been drinking LOTS of fluids. That makes this mother of 4 think that the next lesson might be about bladder control. (Sorry, tmi)

So I have a moment to reflect, finally! I didn't realize how short I had been cutting myself until last week. I was doing a crazy diet with my sister, that required me to cut my coffee intake. At 9 pm I found myself passed out sideways across my bed, drooling on my hubby's pillow. Thankfully my kids took that cue and bid me goodnight and went to bed. (Mommies of littles, hang in there, this moment is coming! - not that it happens often.)

So, what am I learning? I'll peel back the onion in the next few posts.  Starting with today:

Dry outer layer: body learning. I'm learning to be more traditional with my foods. I've been making Kombucha for months now, and my kids love when I flavor it with strawberries. I've even been caught handing off SCOBY jars to friends. (Leave a comment if you want to know more). This week a good friend brought me some milk kefir grains, so I spent this afternoon gleaning the wisdom of my younger sister, Mics, as to how I should prepare it. I had a small (given my cold, and the dairy) kefir/coffee shake today and it was really yummy. Further along my traditional foods journey, this winter completely depleted my stockpile of gallons of frozen home made brother (from our own chickens). Every sore throat was soothed and our round of influenza took half as long as the last go-round a few years back. So this morning the edict was issued that the 3 roosters waiting in the barn be butchered, and they are now in the fridge and the bones and such boiling away on my stove for some more healing broth. Tomorrow I intend to drink the entire canning pot if I'm no better than today.

-update- It didn't take the whole pot to get over my cold, so now I have broth in the freezer again. Between that and the salt sinus rinses, I am thrilled to say I beat the sinus infection without antibiotics... for the first time in a long time. I am so happy, since I didn't want to start over on all the pro biotic work I've been doing. Speaking of pro-biotics, I am having a great time with the kefir, and I have figured out how to make a really yummy herbed cheese spread with it. Now everyone is gobbling up pro biotic goodness as a chip dip or spread on crackers. I hope to post a recipe soon.

Next layer, personal discipline...


©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Review: 31 Days to Happiness by David Jeremiah

Thanks to the folks at Booksneeze, I received a copy of  31 Days to Happiness How to Find What Really Matters in Life by David Jeremiah.

In this volume, Dr. Jeremiah examines the Word of God as penned by the wisest man who lived: Solomon. As the Dr. works his way through the book of Ecclesiastes, he divides the readings into 31 chapters for closer examination. Each chapter ranges from 8-14 pages, and begins with a quote or story from current events and draws the parallel with the questions and pondering of Solomon to our present day struggles. Each chapter examines a new topic that fits with each and every part of our lives: from discontentment to financial gain, from careers to governments, from justice to wisdom. Jeremiah intertwines quotes from present day authors with his own observations, and the book reads like his easily relate-able sermons. As he moves through the book of Ecclesiastes from front to back, he never strays from the Scripture to make a private point. The book finds a delicate harmony between the words of Solomon and the crisis of our present times.

I was so excited to receive this book that I quickly recommended it to my book club, and we all read through it together and met over dinner to discuss it. Over pasta and dessert we each talked about what we liked best and what we didn't like. Namely, the title of the book was the biggest dislike. We felt it sounded like a fix-it course or a self-help book, rather than the reflection on life and the wonderful wisdom of Scripture applied. We each found something applicable in the insights and examples given, showing that with "then" and "now" compared, there really is "nothing new under the sun" (Eccl. 1:9).  We found encouragement for this life and gaining an "above the sun" perspective on it. So many of the quotes from the Scripture were well applied, and the quotes from other literature were well documented in the back of the book. I could tell Dr. Jeremiah shares my fondness for C.S. Lewis, and quoted him often.

Overall, I would recommend this book to anyone. It's not a speed read, but a chapter a day is quite do-able. It would be even better enjoyed, one chapter a week, taking time to ruminate over the concepts. I attempted to use it as a nightly devotional with my kids. My 5th and 6th graders were interested, but my younger ones were not. In the end, it became my own nightly bedside reading.

I hope you get a chance to read this book. If you enjoy the teaching of Dr. David Jeremiah, or if you just need a fresh perspective on life, from the oldest book around, you will enjoy this read.

*I received a free copy of this book ( a $15.99 value) for my review, even so, all opinions are my own. Please see the disclaimer above for more information about my reviews.*

©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

WW: Hiking near the Oregon Trail


Fun hiking in January with my brother Chris:






Linked:

Wordless Wednesday on Only Passionate Curiosity

The Jenny Evolution

©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Spring has Sprung!

Happy First Day of Spring! To celebrate I'm sharing all my favorite spring cleaning tips for the farm! Hop over to Homemaking Organized to read it all!

Great tips including:








So get going! And leave a comment there thanking K for hosting us!


©2012-2013 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

WW: Skiing, for the first time as a family!





Favorites from our first family ski trip in January. :)


Linked:

Wordless Wednesday on Only Passionate Curiosity

The Jenny Evolution

©2012-2014 Loving and Learning on the High Plains. All rights reserved. All text, photographs, artwork, and other content may not be reproduced or transmitted in any form without the written consent of the author. http://www.homeschoolhighplains.blogspot.com
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