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April 29, 2008

Good (Chapter 21)

A person is what he does.
“A virtuous woman is a crown to her husband; but she that maketh ashamed is as rottenness in his bones.”(Proverbs 12:4) This chapter once again made me think. Made me think of how I spend my time. Do I spend it wisely? It is so easy to waste time doing things that really don’t matter I really like to surf the internet. Read blogs, read recipes, read household hints, design my blog and other things, but I have to be very careful of my time. The minutes fly by and it is so easy to forget about the tasks at hand and ignore my family. Years ago I gave up reading romance novels or fictions (Christian of course) because I found they were a waste of time. It often got frustrated when I was into the book and I had to ‘care for my child’. So I decided to give them up. I didn’t feel what I was reading was wholesome and life giving. And since then my appetite has been for wholesome books, books that teach, challenge and uplift rather than entertain. When we had TV I remember how easy it was to waste my afternoon away by watching the afternoon talk shows. I usually didn’t learn much, mostly just entertainment. For what? Now that we have older children and you see how they spend their time I realize how important it is to be a good example. They are watching and they are learning. When they have their own households some day I don’t want them to be used to being entertained, but rather i want them to be used to spending their time wisely. So we don’t have games that waste time, we gave away all our fiction/romance books and we read only Christian biography or true stories that don’t just please the flesh but give life. I am so saddened today when I see what parents let their kids read. Sometimes I wonder if parents even monitor what their kids read. Just because it is labeled ‘Christian’ does that make it so? I have been appalled when I go into the Christian Book Stores and see some of the literature that is out there for our kids. It looks just like the worlds, just with a Christian title. And the romance books that are out there. What good do they do except ignite passions that should be kept quiet until the time that they find their spouse. So I beg you, be careful of what kind of books you allow into your home. Do they support the morals and beliefs of your family? Because if they don’t, you are giving your kids a double standard. So let’s not just entertain our families for entertainments sake. Maybe you need to go through your family library and seriously consider why you have the reading material you do. Another topic that was discussed was researching and examining why we do what we do. Re: vaccinations, nutrition, schooling, ect. Do we do things the way we do just because that’s the way everyone does it? I have to admit I started out our marriage and parenting this way. Didn’t really even think of some of these issues, just did it the way I always saw things done. But we really need to think through why we do the things we do. Why do we vaccinate? Why do we cook the way we do? Why do we school the way we do? And I could go on and on….another day! Let’s remember to seek God’s way for all areas of our life, even in the way we run our household. I agreed with Debi when she talked about how a woman can help her man and do the yard work and even some minor fixing things around the house. This has never been an issue for me for two reasons: (1)Yard work time is in the busy season of farming. If Mark would have to do the yard work it would be after 10:00 or later each night. Doesn’t work! So I have always done the yard work.
(2) I love to fix things. I love the challenge of fixing things. So I often fix things. Of course there are many things that are way over my head, but if it is small enough, I will tackle it. I have done what Debi said, gotten into a job that is over my head and my hubby has to bail me out. I always feel worse about that because it is usually at a time that is inconvenient for him. So I try to choose my ‘fixins’ wisely  I quote from the book “A Good Woman Is A Prudent Woman A prudent woman is not dumb A prudent woman is not lazy A prudent wife does not waste her time A prudent wife is a learner” When reading Proverbs 31:10-31 I see again what a hard working woman she is. In this world of automatic everything it is sometimes easy to get lazy. So I encourage you to read Proverbs 31 and notice verse 31 and how these years of being a mother, someday you will receive the fruits that you have sown. I want to make sure I sow the right thing. Good fruit will be worth more than any amount of relaxation or entertainment, don’t you think?

April 24, 2008

Its Spring....Oh Wait

Ya gotta love Manitoba.
Thought we'd be seeding this week.
Guess not.

April 22, 2008

Keepers At Home Chpt. 20

"That they may teach the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home..." Titus 2:4-5
Why do mother's feel that they have to work outside the home? Is it money, boredom, sanity, ministry, self-worth, investment? My ears perk up when I hear a mom working outside the home. I guess because I want to know her reasoning. This is what I have heard in my listening: (1) We cannot live off of one income, we have too much debt. (2) I need some excitement in my life. It's boring and tedious to be at home day after day. I have to work to keep my sanity. (3) God has given me gifts and I need to use them to minister outside my home. (4) I get no thanks for the things I do at home. The same thing day after day and no one appreciates it. When I go to work I get appreciated, noticed. (5) I went to school for X number of years to get my training/degree. I didn't do that all to stay at home and take care of my kids day after day. Plus I have to pay off my student loans. Here are my thoughts: (1) If you feel you need more income, try living for your 'needs' only. And then pray that God would provide them. A few years ago we listened to a message by Otto Koning "A Widow Who Becomes God's Channel" and we were challenged to live only for our needs. No extas, just the bare minimums. If we needed something, truly needed, we would pray and ask God for it. So one day Joshua came to me and said that he needed some jeans. I told him that he needed to pray and ask God for them. A few days later a neighbor came over and dropped off some clothes for our kids. She said that there were jeans in there that were practically brand new and she couldn't believe how fast her son had grown out of them. When she left we opened the bag and wouldn't you know it, there was not only one, but several pairs of brand new looking jeans just Joshua's size. And one of the pairs of jeans were the exact pair that he had seen in the store and wanted. That was a testimony to us as a family that when you do trust God for your needs, He will provide. But to often I am quick to get things before our kids even know they have a need and in doing so I rob them the joy of seeing God provide their needs. I do believe a mother's job is to clothe her family well and sometimes that means thinking ahead, but at the same time be sensitive to the times God wants to show them His power. So all this to encourage those who think they cannot make it on one income; God knows your needs, and I believe He will honor those who choose to live their lives according to His design. (2) Yes, doing the same thing over and over again can seem like tedious work. But if you have the joy of the Lord as your strength, these mundane things can be life to you. If you focus on the eternal and have a servant's heart these things will not be mundane any more. What better opportunity to serve others as Jesus did than in our own homes! (3) Yes, God has given you gifts and you can use them right in your home. Your family IS your ministry. Every day you are shaping a life for Christ. Every day you are being a witness. When I think of the people my children are going to be a testimony and a witness to when I am faithful to God's calling as a mother, I get excited. How many people have the opportunity to influence a life for Christ 24/7? (4) God sees. He sees your heart. He sees your good works. He sees every cup of water you give.(Matthew 10:42) He sees every dirty diaper you change. He sees every time you wipe up spilled milk. He sees every tear you dry. And some day, if you fulfill your calling well, your children will rise up and call you blessed. and God will say to you, "Well done thy good and faithful servant." (Matthew 25:21) (5) This is an area that we have given a lot of thought for our daughters. How much time and money should they invest in schooling after high school. If God so chooses that they should marry, what pull will there be for them to work out of her home to put her 'traning' to use and to pay off her debts? It is sad to see that so many women have been put in this exact position and don't see any way out. I guess I would say, let's think about this next generation, what is important and what is going to be a hinderance to their calling. And are we doing things just because every one else is? What if your husband doesn't agree with you staying at home with your children. If it is a matter of money, come up with a plan to that would help you to save money. Present it to him in a humble attitude and tell him that you will do as he says and you trust him. If he agrees be diligent in saving money any way you can and that he approves of. Buy used clothes, own only one vehicle, buy used furniture and appliances, don't go on expensive vacations, make your meals from scratch, don't hire people to do odd jobs around your home, instead work on it as a family. And if your husband doesn't agree, pray for God to change his heart and continue to honor him, and be a helpmeet to him. If this is God's will for you He will work it out. And for those stay at home moms who are feeling quite pleased with yourself right now, the second part of the chapter talked to those of us who are at home but are still leaving home through phone, email and chat rooms. I am not a phone talker or a chat room person, but I can spend way too many hours surfing the internet. All good, informative sites but sometimes I end up being idle and not a good mom because of it. There is a balance to these things. And I quote the end of the chapter: " 'Keeping the home is more than staying at home; it is having a heart that is fixed on the home." Happy Day to You!

April 21, 2008

The Rules of a Toddler

We have had a toddler in our house now for most of our parenting years.

I found this write up and thought it was quite accurate:)

If it is on, I must turn it off.
If it is off, I must turn it on.

If it is folded, I must unfold it.

If it is high, it must be reached.

If it is pointed, it must be run with at top speed.

If it is plugged, it must be unplugged.
If it is unplugged, it must be plugged.

If it is not trash, it must be thrown away.
If it is in the trash, it must be removed, inspected, and thrown on the floor.

If it is closed, it must be opened.
If it is open, it must be closed.

If it is a pencil, it must write on the refrigerator, book, or table.

If it is full, it will be more interesting emptied.
If it is empty, it will be more interesting full.

If it has a flat surface, it must be banged upon.

If Mommy's hands are full, I must be carried.

If it is paper, it must be torn.

If it has buttons, they must be pressed.

If it is toilet paper, it must be unrolled.

If it is a Kleenex box it must be emptied.

If it is a drawer, it must be pulled upon.

If it is a phone, I must talk to it.

If it is a bug, it must be swallowed.

If it is dry, it must be made wet with drool, milk, or toilet water.

If it is Mommy, it must be hugged.

April 18, 2008

Enjoying Spring

Well, it seems the warm weather is here, hopefully to stay.

As soon as it turns relatively warm the kids spend most of their hours outside.
This is so nice as it helps them (especially the boys) get rid of their boundless energy!
I wish I had half, or even one-quarter of the energy that they do.
Their favorite pass times:
Jumping on the trampoline,
playing on the play structure,
playing in the sandbox
& riding bikes.
I would mention how they love to play with garter snakes too but I know I have
some readers that are a little squeamish of these little slithery creatures.
You know who you are, I won't mention any names.
You can just be glad I am not posting any pictures of that!

And another bonus is the house stays almost clean:)

Here's a cheer for warm weather, melting snow & sunshine!

April 17, 2008


My thoughts threaten to run rampantly… Be still my heart. The unknown threatens to take over… Be still my heart. No matter how hard I try to focus… Be still my heart. Letting go is so hard… Be still my heart. He calls me, can I hear through the noise… Be still my heart. He tells me His yoke easy, His burden light… Be still my heart. He reminds me not to lean on my own understanding… Be still my heart. He speaks His wisdom to my soul…. Be still my heart. I begin to rest in His promises…. Be still my heart. I feel His love as it washes over me…. Be still my heart. I know that His grace is sufficient… Be still my heart. My heart begins to beat with His…. Be still my heart. I rest secure in My Father’s arms…. My heart is still.

April 16, 2008


Yesterday morning as our 4 youngest sons were finishing up breakfast this was the conversation: Boy #1- No, the youngest in our family is the baby in mommy’s tummy! (At this point my ears perked up) Boy #2- There’s a baby in mommy’s tummy? Boy #3 – How do you know that? Boy # 1- Every mommy has a baby in their tummy. Boy #3- What about mommies who never have babies. Boy #1- Could I have jam on my toast please. Remember the days when life was so simple?

April 15, 2008

Chapter 19 Chaste

Titus 2:5 To be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed. Chaste- Pure in all thought, word, and act and to be modest and honorable in all things. This chapter really hits home for me. Maybe because we have 1 teenage son and 3 teenage daughters. Modesty is something that I feel is always having to be evaluated around here. I get frustrated with the clothing that is out there for young ladies. My girls want to look feminine and yet ‘feminine’ by the worlds standards is ‘the lower & the tighter the better’ in both shirts and pants. And bathing suits are another whole different story. Last year a couple of our girls needed swim suits. After searching high and low….we found nothing that was modest. In the young teens size almost everything was a bikini or very low cut (high cut on the legs). So they just ended up wearing a tank top and shorts over their bathing suits to cover what wasn’t covered. And for our son, I feel bad that he can’t even go shopping without seeing ‘ungodly images’ on the magazines at the checkout stand…never mind the images when going to the beach. A while back the girls and I read a book called “Dear Princess” In it there is a chapter about modest & outward beauty. Man looks on the outward appearance but God looks at the heart. (1 Samuel 16:7) Something that they said in the book that has challenged me over and over was…When you look into the mirror instead of asking yourself if you look ‘good’, ask yourself if you are brining glory to God by the way you are dressing. Dress as if you were dressing for Him. As Debi put it “A woman’s clothes, hair, and adornments-not just her mouth-make a loud profession to all who see her that she is modest and godly, or that she is immodest and ungodly. I appreciate the way Debi addressed the whole ‘women dressing in men’s apparel’ issue. Please understand that I am not attacking any one person here. But I do think that this whole dress vs. pants issue can so easily become a ‘law’. As I talked about before, ‘God looks at the heart’. I have seen some girls and women who were against wearing pants and only wore dresses whose ‘heart appearance’ was nothing to be desired. It doesn’t matter to me if people choose to dress different than I do, but it does matter to me if it becomes law above real heart issues. We do wear pants in our home. A few years ago as I was reading and meditating on Deut. 2:5 I approached my husband and asked him if this meant that I should start wearing dresses. We came up to the same conclusion as was mentioned in this chapter, this verse is referring to cross dressing to look like the opposite gender. In reading scriptures and seeing how men and woman both wore robes and men wore skirts, the whole ‘wearing pants is dressing like a man’ thing didn’t make sense to us. In fact my husband would prefer me not to wear a dress. He likes me as his ‘farm girl’ and so he prefers me in jeans and a sweat shirt. So I have barely any dresses in my closet. And you know what, I don’t feel guilty about it! So ask your husband as the leader of your home what he would like. All this to say, ‘Don’t judge a book by it’s cover’. Just because someone does or doesn’t wear a skirt does not indictate her walk with God. So when you see someone who wears pants while you only wear dresses or visa versa, don’t get this ‘more righteous than thou’ attitude. Get to know that person, get to know their heart and then make your conclusions. I have to say I found the story of Bob a little to the extreme. I don’t think this would happen to the average ‘Bob’. I do believe though that we as ladies have to think seriously about the way we dress and that we can very easily be an unknowing participant in visual adultery. My daughters and I routinely check with my husband to ask if a certain thing we are wearing is ‘modest’. Why, because he is a man, and something that we may think nothing of, he may see differently. So all this to say: fashion is not the most important thing. Dressing to the glory of God is. So next time you get dressed look in the mirror and ask yourself this question, “Does what I am wearing bring glory to God? Would my Heavenly Father be pleased with me?” And please teach this to your daughters. Start when they are young. Even a baby can be modest. Why would you want to back track. Remember that your daughters happiness is not more important than her holiness. When I was a teenager and my dad stepped in and gave his opinion on my clothing I wasn't too impressed at the time. But now I look back and realize that was one of the most loving things my dad could have done for me. In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with braided hair or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. 1 Timothy 2:9-10

April 14, 2008

Blow Me Down!

For those of you who live in Manitoba you know how extremely windy it was today!

The younger ones had a lot of fun being "pushed by the wind"

The wind was supposed to gust to 60kph, not sure what it actually did.

This seems to be a necessary part of getting some warm weather these days:)

April 12, 2008

April 11, 2008

Remembering our Nellie

We once had a silly goat, her name was Nellie. She gave us many laughs and a couple of babies too. She is no longer part of our farm animals, but here is tribute to her:)

April 9, 2008

I Got Dumped Contest

4tunate is having a contest.

Here's how it works.

1. Dump Your Camera - whatever is on it RIGHT NOW, don't take any more pictures before uploading, that's cheating.

2. Email me your favorite picture from your upload (quatro_mama[at]yahoo[dot]com). It can be funny, completely random, silly, cute, etc. If you have a blog, you can post your favorite "dump" and refer to this contest.

3. Leave me a comment here to let me know that you're participating, so I can keep a look-out for your email.

4. Your deadline is 11:59pm FRIDAY, APRIL 11th.

6. I will pick out my favorite 10 and post them to this blog.

7. YOU get to vote for your favorite. The winner will receive a mystery (yet to be determined) prize.

A Day in the Life of Mikaya

On Mikaya's birthday the girls decided to take some farm pictures.

I thought they were too cute not to share:)

April 8, 2008

To Be Discreet (Chpt. 18)

“As a jewel in a swine’s mouth, so is a woman without discretion.” Proverbs 11:22 SEEK TO BE COURTEOUS I like the story of the Red Truck. How this man borrowed a piece of junk but he returned it in much better shape, fixing the floor, made it run better and even filled it with gas. We live in a society that tells us to get all you can, even if it means bowling someone over in the process. This made me think of how many times in life I just want things to go good my way and I forget about the other person. I want to seek to be courteous in my dealings and socializing with others. I don't want to be seen as a user of other people. SEEK TO BE HONEST In our parenting class we discussed how as parents we need to be honesty. If we aren’t honest how can we expect our children to be. Eg. When someone calls that I don’t want to talk to, telling my family to tell them that I am not home……dishonest. When we go to a place with a salad bar/buffet and instead of paying for our little ones we let them eat off our plate, or bring back desserts for everyone at the table….dishonest. If you get a drink from a drink machine and 2 drinks pop out and instead of returning it you say…”Today I am blessed!”…..dishonest. When you buy something and the cashier gives you back too much change and you smile and keep it……dishonest. Selling something for way more than it is worth….dishonest. I know of people who feel God has blessed them when other people get ripped off. Hmmmm….what’s wrong with that picture? SEEK TO BE GRACIOUS I have much to learn in this area. When Debi said to this lady “The real issue is your heart’s perspective.” I realize that my heart is not right many times and that’s why I struggle with the way that I approach things. So many times the things I say comes out all wrong and this is because of what is in my heart. When there is a conflict is when I realize that there is an issue in my heart. LACK OF JUDGEMENT “Every wise woman builds her house; but the foolish pluck it down with her hands.” Prov. 14:1 Debi mentions how our words can color our husband’s perspective. The questions we sometimes ask our husbands can make him feel like a nit-wit!!! TRAITS OF A GODLY WOMAN -Chaste -Sober -Modest -Shamefacedness -Meek -Quiet Spirit -In subjection -Obedient -Kind -Virtuous -Prudent -Good -Discreet -Keeper at Home School -Gracious There was so much in this chapter, so many character traits to address. So read it, and tell me what you got out of it!

April 5, 2008

Two Birthdays

This week we celebrated another 2 birthdays.

April 3rd was Mikaya's 1st and the 4th was Nathan's 4th.

So I will start with a birthday tribute to Mikaya:

Wow, 1 year old already. On one hand it seems like you were born just yesterday, and yet I can't imagine what life was like without you.

We always have so much fun with you. You are a very joyful baby with lots of life that shows all over your face. When you smile even your eyes twinkle. So everyone here loves to make you laugh and you humor us by complying.

You are very good at communicating. We taught you to sign early and so you use the signs: please, all done & more regularily. Sometimes you look like a back catcher with all the signs you throw out! You also try to say many words, your favorite one is puppy which you say when you see anything that is furry or has 4 legs. You really like animals and are often found looking out the window trying to find the 'pup pup' (always said in a whisper).

Your sisters keep trying to convince you to walk but you think it's faster crawling. You can walk quite a few steps on your own and I am sure you could take off it you so chose. Personally I think you just like all the attention of everyone coaxing you to walk :)

You have so many nick names and you are only 1 years old thanks to your kooky family:) Mickey-Annia (Brooke), Mickey (Dad), Kaya-Banaya (Jennifer), Kaya (all), Kaya-Anne (all) just to name a few.

The bond between your sister Brooke and you is deepening. It's amazing to see how a 3 yr. old and a 1 yr. old interact and communicate. When you are in your playpen Brooke must feel sorry for you as she will crawl right in and play with you for a long time. She really loves you and I am sure you will have many great years playing 'house' together.

Your older siblings all love you to bits. Jennifer, Megan and Kerri take such good care of you and give you endless hugs and kisses. Joshua rarely misses a day that he doesn't cuddle and talk with you. (you are a great cuddler:) Caleb loves to hold you and thinks you are just so funny. And Zachary gives you lots of hugs on the run (because he is always on the run!), Jesse, & Nathan are often loving you 'in your face' and you try very hard to be patient with them, but sometimes you just have to let them know you would like some space. And of course Daddy give you lots and lots of Daddy cuddles which you love and ask for many times a day. Mommy gets her cuddle time in when she nurses you and it's a good thing or she might never get to hold you!

So as we reflect on this year that you have been in our family we feel especially blessed that God chose you, Mikaya, to come and join our crew. We look forward to many years of loving, training and playing with you. We love you! Happy Birthday!

Now on to Nathan!

Well you started off your life just right when you were born 4 years ago on 04/04/04. God knew after having to remember 8 other birthdates that we needed an easy one!

Our Natey-Boy. Where do I begin?

I think I will start with your smile. You have this contagious smile that is.... well....contagious!

It lights up your mouth, your eyes and even your ears! We love your smile. So.. keep on smiling!

God knew we needed you in our family. Daddy needed another little buddy to help him and we needed another helper in the kitchen. And of course He knew we needed to brush up our parenting skills. We have had some challenges, but through those challenges we have learned and grown. Thanks for those life lessons!

From day one you have known what you wanted, how you wanted it and when! So we have many character training moments through these times.

Your nose is amazing. You can tell when you walk in the house what we are baking or having for supper. I think that has attributed to your preferences in food but you have been gracious as you have learned to have 'no thank you' helpings even if it isn't your favorite food.

You have been working very hard at having a good attitude when asked to do things and you have come such a long way. Thanks for trying so hard.

We love all your hugs and kisses. And do we ever get a lot of them. Also the way you call your little sister 'Beautiful'. If you get married some day I am sure your wife will be very pleased:)

What a great little helper you are. You dry the dishes, help clean off the table, help the girls clean the house, help daddy outside. And the greatest thing is how you see what needs to be done and do it without being asked. Just keep it up, OKAY!

Love, Life and Laughter. That's our Natey-Boy. We love you Nate and are so glad that you are part of our family. We look forward to another year of watching you grow and mature and become a little man. Happy Birthday Nate.