What you do in your house is worth as much as if you did it up in heaven for our Lord God. We should accustom ourselves to think of our position and work as sacred and well-pleasing to God, not on account of the position and work, but on account of the word and faith from which the obedience and the work flow. ~ Martin Luther

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

February Days


These days are full of... snow.  Lots and Lots of snow.  Every other day, cloud kings decide to lavish   flakes of crystal upon the earth people...if they are stingy, just an inch or two- mostly, though, they are too kind and generous for our own good.

All the sleds were broken before winter even began, so children make do by throwing their bodies down hills.  Moses stares out the window and watches children at play until Mama takes pity and sends him outdoors too.  

Under all this white there are creatures starting to stir, sap that is beginning to rise, crocuses that are heading toward the sun.  Like the thoughts deep within, there is so much happening under the surface that we do see but trust is there.  I'm trusting, Lord!! 

 As long time readers of the blog know, Matt is a strange fellow who takes some of the coldest nights of winter and goes camping.  And he somehow finds this fun.  Matt celebrated his 44th birthday on February 13th by going cold-weather camping with the boys (it was maybe 4 degrees out that morning).  I found him napping, all snuggled in, on the couch later that day.  

Matt's birthday dessert looked a bit different this year- he has been really dedicated to making good food choices and I didn't want to subvert his efforts.  But low carb desserts usually stink, quite frankly, and it bugs me when people say "these taste just like so-n-so...maybe better!"  Because they usually taste like gritty, bitter cardboard.  Who are they kidding?!  And it is just MEAN to get my hopes up with a tasty looking picture and then have me be so utterly disappointed.  Well, I think I finally found a GOOD tasting cookie.  One that I actually WANT to eat.  (Wonder of wonders!)  So I made it BIG, topped it with peanut butter mousse, drizzled with chocolate  and dolloped it with whipped cream.  It was actually pretty decent, and that says something if I said it.  I am particular with my sweets.  

Also a part of these days...a broken toilet!  A home with seven potty-goers and a single solitary NOT WORKING toilet is no fun, let me tell you.  But Matt swooped in and saved the day, as he often does.  Three Newman boys squished into our teeny bathroom to fix the whole thing was a funny and ugly and beautiful sight.

My unicorn-loving girl made unicorn Valentine's for her friends and asked me to take a picture of them.  Which reminds me of a moment that tickled me this week...

Ineke, after reading this book:  "Mama?  Are wishes real? Because I have wished and wished... I've tried practically everything... and I still can't ride a unicorn!"

Saturday, February 06, 2021

Way to Dough

Why is it that the moment I determine to be low-carb,

it suddenly becomes very important to learn how to do All.The.Things with carbs.  

New biscuit strategies that don't require a recipe.

How to make homemade tortillas.

Experimenting with some new bread recipes.

And all of a sudden-like, needing to know how phyllo is traditionally handmade, why French baguettes have honeycomb, and how traditional Foccacia is made in Genoa.  

I guess, instead of saying 'Way to Dough', I should be saying "Way to GROW". 

har har.

Speaking of growing- look who is big enough now to climb up the kitchen stool and get himself to working...

Wednesday, February 03, 2021

Birthday Babycakes (Ineke turns 5)

In the holiday hubbub, I never got a chance to post the holiday birthday girls' pictures.

My Christmas baby has been a handful for as long as she has been born, but now she is quite literally a handful of years.  

Where did these five years go?

It's always a challenge, with her birthday so close to Christmas, to make Ineke's birthday special on its' own.

She winds up usually getting handmade things for her birthday.

I had intentions of making her a unicorn dress and doll which were NEARLY foiled because my sewing machine stopped working.

Thankfully, my sister in law had one I could borrow, very last minute, to get through the birthday and Christmas gift-making.   She really saved the day!

Corynn made her a little sloth ornament since Ineke has always been our 'slothie' girl.

Her requested meal was homemade PLAIN CHEESE PIZZA.

(Even though we have homemade pizza and a movie every Friday night!)

She got her own heart-shaped one, which she thought was pretty neat.

As you can see, she also got some balloons.  Birthdays are getting fancy!

A unicorn loving girl needs a unicorn cake. 

A sourpatch candy loving girl needs one with a sour ribbon mane.

Grandma and Grandpa know the way to this girls' heart- a ballerina tutu and BLING!  And it just so happened to match her dress.

On a side note: I FINALLY used up the last of that crazy rainbow yarn!  It seemed to go on forever!

She is spunky and sweet and wholly delightful.

A friend recently called Ineke 'vivacious' and I realized that is just the perfect word to describe her.

I've loved watching you grow, Babycakes, and I can't wait to see more!

Next Stop Teendom

(Back when the hat was a bit big and her fingers tasted good.)

Adele's 12th birthday fell on Thanksgiving this year which would have been very special...


she and I hadn't been feeling poorly the day before.  Out of an abundance of precaution, we decided to forfeit the fun plans of going to Nanny and Poppy's house (where Nanny had ordered a SPECIAL birthday ice cream cake just for Adele' with her favorite ice cream flavors and where there would surely be a big birthday hubbub) and just stay home instead.  

So my girl didn't get a Mama-decorated cake this year.  She didn't get a requested birthday meal on her birthday (she got a impromptu, improvised Thanksgiving feast).  And she didn't get to spend her birthday at Nanny and Poppy's house hangin' with the cousins.

But she DID get balloons!

And she DID get Papa home for her birthday!

And she DIDN'T have to wait to open presents until the evening when Papa got off work!

And it turns out...

She DID get the Very Special Storebought Ice Cream Cake!


Because after hosting a Thanksgiving feast at home, when any ordinary person would want to put her feet up, the very extraordinary Nanny drove an hour to do a birthday banner drive by and cake drop off!

What started out as a bummer birthday turned out to be one in which my girl got to feel even more special than usual.

The following is a series of pictures where Adele' was laughing so hard because the cake was so heavy and I was taking too long (to take what turned out to be blurry pictures anyway) and her arms were getting tired and I kept telling her to "STOP LAUGHING OR YOU'LL DROP THE CAKE!"

I gave up and let her blow the candles out before she dropped it entirely.

Right when the weather was beginning to turn cold, Adele' was admiring an old American girl doll catalog and mentioned how cozy and sweet the flannel nightgown set was and how she would pick that over everything else in the magazine.  I tucked that information inside, determining to make her a set for her birthday.

It won't be long before these fleeting 'a girl and her doll' days are gone, after all.

 May the good Lord guide and direct those barefooted steps all the days of your life and may your good-natured and contented spirit grow with you, my girl!