Monday, February 29, 2016

March into March Blessing Our Homes Kick Off (Day 1)



Good day friends! I am excited about this new month upon us. Today is the day we will start our month off right!

Get your calendars out! Notebooks! Coffee or Tea! Let us MARCH INTO MARCH WITH DETERMINATION!


As you can tell we are schooling and planning! The first thing I encourage us to do is to pray over our month. Get our calendar out write things on it that are always on there. Example- church, shop day, appointments, and etc.

Second thing plan your menu for the month or at least for the next two weeks. This will be one chore out of the way. Gather any recipes you need and put it all together. Make your shopping list or check your pantry for your ingredients.

Third decide on a room you really feel is calling your name or maybe it is an area. Go ahead and look at your calendar and set an appointment to work on that area or room. This may take a few days.

I want to focus on 4 GOALS to BLESS OUR HOMES this month for us.

1. Clutter Busting
2. Cleaning (Deeper cleaning)
3. Caring
4. Creating

This week and next week will work on clutter busting and organizing starting tomorrow.

Go through your home today and get a jump start. Make a pledge to get rid of 5 pieces of clutter a day for the next 2 weeks. Or focus on a drawer, closet, under your bed.

Hope you will join me. Comment and let me know how your days are going on each post.

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My Rooms I want to tackle this month are my Children Rooms. I have made an appointment for these.

I made our menu for the month using a SUPER NEAT SITE. Pocket Change Gourmet has free printable monthly menus that are frugal kid friendly meals. There was only 2 meals on it that I knew my family wouldn't eat. I printed out the menu and crossed the two meals off we wouldn't eat and replaced them with ones we would. She provides printable recipes to go with the meals with the calendar. I highly suggest check this out.

Love you all dearly. Hopefully we can Bless Our Homes this month. Keep the main thing the main thing....check with God. Have Jesus order our steps for the day.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Peace...Wonderful Peace


May you be blessed with peace (Shalom) today in all your doings, goings, and being.

Shalom Friends,

Chrissy T

Friday, February 26, 2016

Can Homemaking Become an Idol?

I know this is a touchy post title. I know some might disagree or not fully understand where I may be coming from. But I can not shirk the fact that I felt impressed to write this post for a while now.

You see....I believe it can. I believe that if not careful that we can get so caught up in homemaking that it can become an idol. I also believe that we can say we are doing it for the Lord and I believe we are but at times we do get caught up in our own agenda.



I am not saying we need to shirk our responsibility as a homemaker. I do believe we need to manage our homes wisely but I do think we need to stop and check ourselves.

How can you tell if homemaking is becoming an idol?

1. You think about your home all the time. Projects, to-do's, cleaning, chores, DIY's, and things of this nature consume your life.You find it hard in your time with God to shut down your mind and focus on Him. 

2. You spend more time cleaning, decorating, organizing your home than you do investing in your family, others, and community. I am not saying these things above does not add blessings to your family but you spend A LOT of time doing these things besides having a cup of tea at the table with a child needing an eye to eye conversation.



3. You spend more money on books about homemaking and the such than you do on helping those in need. Touchy! I know! But if we can spend $10 on ANOTHER homemaking book and know we have a sister in need of a meal and say we don't have the money to do it....hmmm.  Just a thought. I do love a good book don't get me wrong. I am just saying if we have to do one or the other what would you do? Does your kid need a date with you? Is there a "happy" you can bless someone with beside you buying more for your homemaking purposes?

4. We use homemaking as an excuse to not be helpful in other areas. I believe our homes should be in order before we start journeying the town spending time outside the home to help others and such but we must not use this excuse to not get out of our comfort zones and be a light to the world. Take your kids along. Teach them to be Jesus to a hurting world.

5. We spend hours or days fretting on all we can't get done. Then spend hours or days reading, and researching ways to be more productive. All the time God says to us....Just Breathe...Just BE!

6. We have turned homemaking into in idol when we are stressed, fretful, annoyed, and aggravated when life hits, interruptions happen...such as a child that wants to play or read with us, a sister in Christ needs a coffee date, or your husband wants to make plans the day you have scheduled to clean your garage.



Ladies...I love homemaking. I love having a home in decent order. But I will be honest at times I am guilty of all of the above and it has been placed upon my heart that it has become an idol. Ever had those days when you just got finished cleaning, organizing, or etc only for someone to come in and spill something, or get a toy out, and you feel your blood boil?  I have. Time for a heart check. In the grand scheme of it all will is this an eternal issue?

 I don't want to be so caught up in cleaning our home, decorating it, organizing it, stocking it, and scheduling it that it becomes a HOUSE not a HOME.

I was quite nervous about this post but I knew I had to write it. I have given this blog to the Lord and I want to be obedient. I am not saying that homemaking isn't important. I am also not saying we should put outside activities before our homes I am saying we need to check or motives.

Bless you all!

Winner of the LifeGiving Home Book

Good Day!!!

Today is the day and I am so tickled to offer you a precious wonderful book.



After praying over the bowl of entries that God would gift this book to who He wanted the WINNER is.........

 
 
Joanna (Hearthkeeper) if you will email me your shipping address at gotjoy4@hotmail.com I will get it sent to you. Congrats and I hope you enjoy it to the fullest!
 
Thank you to all that entered! Thank you for reading my humble little blog.
 
Blessings,
Chrissy T
 

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Last Day to Sign Up for Giveaway~The Lifegiving Home Book (Sally & Sarah Clarkson)

I will be choosing the winner of this amazing book tomorrow. If you haven't entered please check out THIS post so that you can leave a comment on that post for the entry. You have until Midnight tonight central time to comment.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

How Do You Clean?

When I first became a stay at home mom I ran my home very efficiently. I was use to organizing days and having schedules from my job. That mentality leaked out in my home. At that time we only had one small child. He was two (now 16) when the Lord began to prompt my heart to be a homemaker, homeschooling, and stay at home mom. Two more kids later,a growing ministry, a whirl of health problems, and just plain life often affected my ability to run a smooth sailing ship no matter how much I tried.



When my children were all younger I cleaned my home on Monday, did office and menu planning on Wednesday, cleaned fridge and deep cleaned an area on Thursday, and ran errands and grocery shopped on Friday.

This worked so well for us then. My kids were younger, took naps, and didn't need a full day of schooling. Now is a different story. Plus, my health is no where like it was then. I was very healthy and full of energy. I am not this way now...AT ALL.



My question to you is.....DO YOU DO ONCE A WEEK CLEANING OR CERTAIN ROOMS FOR CERTAIN DAYS? Are you a Marathon cleaner-Do it all one day a week or do you do it a different way?

When I refer to cleaning I mean mopping, dusting, scrubbing baths, and deeper needs. I always have a decent presentable home due to habit from when I was a Pastor's Wife where random visits unexpected always happened. I have a decent system as far as keeping our home picked up, dishes done, and etc. But I am having a hard time finding a flow that works for me for other things.




PLEASE SHARE!!!!  I would love to hear what you do and how you do it!!!

Blessings,
Chrissy

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Blessing Our Homes~March into March with Determination

**Just a reminder about the GIVEAWAY here at Keeping Home. One blessed reader will kick their Spring off with a good book The Lifegiving Home Book by Sally and Sarah Clarkson.** To get a chance for this book please comment here. Deadline to enter is Thursday, February 26th at midnight central time.**

Now Today's post....

March is around the corner. I love this time of year. I love hearing the birds chirping, smells of spring rains, and flowers blooming. CAN I SAY I LOVE WARM WEATHER?  Not hot! WARM!



I am excited to bring you a series in March here at Keeping Home. I have so many things lurking at me. LURKING! I need to bite the bullet and just DO IT! I am a perfectionist procrastinator. YES! You read that right. I am either all gung ho or all gung no go.



I want us to march into our new month (March) with a new fresh determination to get some things done that will bless our home, families, and even ourselves.

I will be sharing what I do each day to create a Blessed Home and offer you little challenges to join me. I am excited for all of us. Please make plans to join me next month.



Let us March into March with a determination to Bless Our Homes! Comment on what you think a Blessed Home is?

Blessings,
Chrissy

Monday, February 22, 2016

When do YOU Decorate for Spring/Easter?

We have been having BLISSFUL weather. I am not use to the South yet and it warms up a whole lot quicker than Illinois. I am thankful for that. One thing I do not miss about the Midwest is the cold, and long gray winters.


I am planning on decorating for Easter March 1st. I usually just do a general switch out of Spring Décor such as wreaths, and table arrangements for spring. But I like to add pops of Easter themed Décor in the midst of it.

When do you decorate for Spring/Easter?

Blessings,
Chrissy T

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Sunday Ponderings

Hello Dear Friends!!! I hope you all have a had a good week. I surely was blessed by visiting with long distance friends on our recent trip. I had a lovely time with my dear friend, Leigh Anna. She gifted me with yummy pumpkin bread. It was super moist and hit the spot. I do love my friend and I do love her bread.

This upcoming week should bring some mild warmer weather. I plan to tackle of few cleaning, homemaking, and organizing projects. I need to get some areas in order for they are causing a lack of peace and I do not like that.

My husband's birthday is Tuesday. I will be cooking his favorite meal which is meatloaf, mashed pots, peas, and cornbread. I haven't decided on a gift yet but I have one in mind. He really is a difficult person to purchase for. I can't explain why he just is. He doesn't have a lot of hobbies and the like so gifts like this isn't an option. He isn't a person that is materialistic. He isn't into electronics. So....it can be tricky. I am thinking a nice tie and shirt for church. Yet, I always do that. Hmmmm....I am pondering this today.



We took last week off from school for our trip and I am debating about taking this week off and doing our spring cleaning so that when "TRUE SPRING" comes we are not stuck in the home cleaning, organizing, and the such. I can use spring to do fun lessons, picnics, field trips, and such. I am planning to school a little in the summer since we had to take off days in the for moving in August, and my sickness in October and December.

I can't help but I have an itch to get things in order with the home. I find I school better, function better, and we all have better attitudes when the home has organization and order. I am pondering this today as well...to school or not school... that is the question. Half days don't work well for me because I am and all or nothing lady and I like to focus on one thing and delcutttering takes time and energy.

What is on you mind today? Of course I do have the goodness of the Lord on my mind!!!

Blessings,

Chrissy


Thursday, February 18, 2016

The Lifegiving Home Book~ Giveaway

I am so excited to announce a giveaway for a wonderful book that will help bring more life into your home. One of the things I crave here at Keeping Home is that our homes is more than just about cleaning, organizing, saving money, order, and such I want our homes to be  homes that gives life. That gives peace, grace, laughter, and joy.

I believe order and such do help in giving life in the home but nothing can compare to a tea party with your children, a good book by the fireplace, or even snuggles and board games.

I love Sally Clarkson's writings. Her and her daughter have authored a book called "The Lifegiving Home" and I am so excited to offer a book for some blessed reader.

How to enter the giveaway~ Leave a comment about one of your favorite things you do to add a little life lift to your home.


If you would like more information about this book please check out Sally Clarkson's information here on it and watch the short video on the book.

I will announce the winner February 26th. You have until then to enter on this post.

Blessings,
Chrissy

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

My Book Swap Gift, Laine's Letters, and My Special Shirt

I hosted a Book Swap at the beginning of the month and I am so thankful I did. I was blessed with a great book but also a TREASURE that I will hold close to my heart and hopefully will place in my daughters hands one day. Wendi from the My Heart is Always Home blog was my book swap partner. She blessed me with an Amish read as I am a HUGE fan of this. But she blessed me with a treasure. Ya'll know how I am a huge fan of Laine's Letters and Wendi blessed me with a copy of her letters. I could feel her prayers as I opened each lovely package.

 I was having a horrible day that day and was questioning so much and I got the package at a perfect time. I cried with joy when I opened this gift. I will hold this to my heart so dearly.





I am a huge fan of the blog Homespun Heart. Monica speaks so much to my heart and challenges me in so many ways. I love her posts and when I visit I always feel inspired and refreshed. ALWAYS!
She is trying to publish her first book and to help her with publishing costs she offered shirts. I got mine and LOVE IT!





It was so beautifully wrapped and felt the love in both of these gifts from Wendi as well as the shirt from Monica. I love this blogging community I am in and I am so thankful for it and the friends I have made.

Blessings,
Chrissy

Monday, February 15, 2016

Monday Meanderings

Meandering means a winding course. Today's post is a Hodge Podge of things really. I thought Meandering sounded divine. I just love the sound. Yes...I told you all I love words.

We had a lovely visit with my grandmother. Just Hannah and I went. We stopped by the beach for  few minutes during our travel. It was decently warm and the tide was out. Hannah enjoyed the freedom of it all. She is such a free spirit. She ran through the low tide shouting "I am free".



I made a yummy strawberry shortcake. It was divine. We ate way too much. We watched Hallmark Movies and cuddled up.

My grandmother was sad to see us go and we really didn't want to leave. Seemed like it went really fast.


On a different note I hope everyone had a nice Valentine's. We had a sweet day and my Sis N Law invited us for lunch after church. She made yummy chicken pot pie and I brought a cake.

I joined our church choir and last night was my first night going. I enjoyed it. I was nervous. Our church is very large and it was quite an eye opener when you are standing in front of everyone.

I had a choir robe and all. My kids were smiling at me and waving at me from their seat....*smiles*!

This week looks like it will be off track a little as we will travel out of town with my husband for business and for him to preach out. We are planning to see one of my best friends that I talk to weekly but haven't seen in a year and half. I am thrilled to say the least.

I hope you all have a wonderful day!!!

Friday, February 12, 2016

Value and Do a Little Extra

Good day friends,

I have been so busy this week LOVING! I have been trying to value others more. As the word says Prefer One Another!!!





The kids going to their Super HERO  Valentine Homeschool Party


Doing a little extra can share a deep joy of LOVE!
It doesn't have to be much! A visit, phone call, or a card of love can mean more than material things. But it is nice to give a little extra and share something special with someone.

This weekend we are going to surprise my grandmother who is by herself with a visit and a Valentine Strawberry cake. She lives a couple of hours away but it will be worth it.

I hope you all have a super Valentine's Day. I will be taking a break for the weekend to visit my family, and Value those around me by being PRESENT!

Love you all,

Chrissy

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Observe the Love

One of the best ways to embrace LOVE is to OBSERVE it.

Observe means to notice something significant. LOVE is ALL OVER. The small flowers. The Dove's sitting on the lines. The sweet tender hand slipping into yours.



Laughter filling the home is a sign of LOVE. Observe it. Stop and notice the little things in your home that shine LOVE!



Even on the roughest of days LOVE will show up at your door, or a smile from someone in the market.



LOVE is that sweet spirit of GOD moving into your Prayer Closet in the morning light or late evening.



OBSERVE IT!  TAKE NOTICE of the forms of LOVE that are BIG and SMALL all around you today.



CHALLENGE....Take a picture or write down in your journal LOVE that your observe today!

Love you all!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

A Love Letter

Love is patient....Love is Kind....Love endures.....Love doesn't boast.....Love is all this and so much more. God is LOVE! Jesus...Oh...How Beautiful His LOVE!

I have often struggled with comprehending this amazing LOVE the Lord gives as it is not what I am used to. Usually loves always comes with a price, selfish antics, or short term for some. I am thankful I have been gifted to know the Love of Christ, the Love of my faithful godly husband, and the sweet innocent love of my children. I am thankful God has blessed me.



I tell you how sweet the Love of children can be. I can mess up all day long, I can not be so loving in deed or words, and at times fail to show them the love they deserve but my children always LOVE me. I ask for forgiveness of them when I mess up because I think we should do this as parents. I also expect the same from them because it teaches the beauty of grace and forgiveness. It never fails though after I have asked for their forgiveness their sweet hands touch my face and say you are a good mommy, I love you, it is okay mommy....Oh, how I could be like this in my adult years. I try, I aim, but often fail.



Love is unconditional. It is persevering. It is forgiving. It is selfless. Love is fun. Love is a risk but worth taking. Love is powerful.

One of  the things I long for is to truly LOVE the LORD! I mean truly LOVE Him. Like Laine (my online mentor although she doesn't know) teaches really if we want to be like Christ we have to spend time with Him. We have to dig in His word. Sit at His feet. Walk with Him in our "Martha" moments. But you can't do that without having "Mary" moments.



If we want to love our husbands, children, family, neighbors, church family well...IT MUST BEGIN with a LOVE FOR CHRIST so that LOVE may dwell within us and radiate to others.

I understand this post is a little deeper than normal for Keeping Home Blog. But I can't "Keep My Home" properly if I don't have a LOVE for Jesus and for the things of Him.

Yes....we can have perfectly organized drawers, a wonderful routine (I DON'T), cook from scratch, do all things great, but if we forget to leave the love out...it is like a tinkling cymbal. *Smiles* I want everything I do to bring Him Glory, Shine His Love, and I want to be Wrapped in Him.




HAVE YOU DRANK FROM HIS CUP TODAY?  HAVE YOU SHARED YOUR LOVE FOR HIM BY PRAISING HIM? 

Challenge for you friends....today find time to grab a cup of tea, pen, and paper. Write a love letter to the Lord. Stick it in your Bible or Journal. Look back over it when you get in a rush, drought, or go through a trial.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this. Please share. Of you have a blog, share your special time creating your Love Letter. You don't have to share your actual letter but about the special time writing it.


Love,
Chrissy T

Monday, February 8, 2016

Just a Little About LOVE

This week in honor of Valentine's I would like to share how we can Spread LOVE in our Families, Home, and Community.



I love acronyms. I am not sure why but I love word study, breaking words down, and making more meaning out of one word.

This week we will focus on LOVE!!!

L-Love ~Tuesday
O-Observe ~ Wednesday
V-Value ~ Thursday
E- Extra (Do a little Extra) ~ Friday




To kick this off I want to ask....What does LOVE mean to YOU?!

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Speak to Me Sunday

"When you eat and drink to the glory of God, sleep no more than may make you serviceable unto God; when your solitary musings are about the engaging of your souls to God; when your social conference is about the things of God; when all acts of worship endear God to you; when your duties bring you nearer to God; when the love of God is the sweetness of your mercies, and your cordial under afflictions, when you can love God under amazing providences, as well as under refreshing deliverances; then you may be said to love God with all your souls."  ~Samuel Annesley, 1661



Is this not so beautiful? Full of truth! How I want to be able to say this.  I will honestly say I do not live up to all this....but I aim for it. I want my heart to be captivated by the Lord. I want to be FULL of LOVE for Him.



Yet everyday my heart is pulled in so many different directions. Oh, how I believe BUSY can be such a distraction. It can blind us, rob us, and lead us astray from the Lord.

Once I read this in a little newsletter...

B-Busy
U-Under
S-Satan's
Y-Yolk



Do we let the cares of this life replace our time with God? Do we stay so busy even with things that are "Good" that we miss moments of drinking from the Lord's cup of refreshment. Are we a Martha? Are we a Mary?


We do have to perform Martha duties but we have to make sure we have Mary Experiences.

"Be Suspicious of every thing that may steal or divert your love from God." ~ Samuel Annesley 1661

Blessings,
Chrissy

Friday, February 5, 2016

Favorite Frugal Tip~ Frugal & Thrifty Week 6

I have A LOT of frugal tips that I like. I get sucked in very quickly when I see a post or a pin that says the word "FRUGAL or THRIFTY".

There are so many great tips, clever tricks, and advice. Some really can save you so much and help you in so many ways.

Today though I will share what my favorite tip is.......

*Prayer*

Yep, I know it isn't what you thought. But it reaps so much savings. *Prayer* before going in the store has led me to many savings and sales. It is amazing. I learned from Laine that this was something she did and since I started I always find meat sales, and also make better choices in the store.


When you pray that God will lead you to make good decisions in the store and stay on track you have that in your heart when you enter the store and you will stay more focused. I tend to go over my cart several times to check for any impulse choices I may have snuck in and I usually always end up finding something and put it back. This helps me not purchase things that aren't necessary.

Some encouragement that God is an ON TIME GOD!!!!

What is your favorite frugal tips???

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Favorite thing COOK or BAKE?

I know to some there is NO difference. But it is to me. Cooking and Baking are two different things when I am in the kitchen.  Today I will share what my favorite thing is.

 I love the feeling of dough, the smells of something I have created rising in the oven, and the creativity with baking. I love it. I always feel accomplished when I bake a loaf of successful bread or yummy cookies.

BUT my favorite is COOKING!

I like to try recipes. I like to play with seasonings and ingredients. I love casserole creations. I love sitting down and taking the first taste of multiple items I have cooked. I love chopping! I love the sizzle of the pan, and sound of the boiling water.

What about you.... are your a COOKING FAN or a BAKING UP A STORM FAN?

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Color~What is my Favorite?!

Mrs. Rabe from Creekside Cottage a bit back shared her favorite colors. It was such a fun post. Check it out here.

Well, this week I thought I would share with you my favorite colors?

When it comes to the home I am a little all over the map. But I always get drawn to BLUE! I like pops of red (burgundy type), yellow, and BLUE! I like creamy LIGHTLY yellow tinted walls and white!!!!! I like clean lines. But I also love patterns. Creamy beiges, whites, light browns, with bold colors such as blue, red (burgundy type), and yellow.

Here is a sneak peek of some color in our home.













Clothes....BELIEVE it or not I wear usually black. I don't know why I just like. It is clean and simple. I can pair it with all kinds of small pops of colors. But I do tend to try to dress what is right for my complexion and hair color. Light Fair and Red headed. I love to wear burgundy, browns, and navy.


When it comes down to it....I am always drawn to BLUE when it comes to the home, knick knacks, journals, coffee cups, dishes.

For clothes my eye always likes clean black lines and navy.


What about you???