Tuesday, October 28, 2014

School Days

Another school year is underway!
 Each year my kids are good sports as I take their back to school pictures.

Our school year started on August 25th.  Since we have a new building that is being rented for Bible studies, English lessons, and other outreach opportunities, we decided to move school to that location as well.  It is only a 7 minute walk from our house.  Our family does well with a very structured school schedule and routine.  These first 9 weeks have been quite productive and the kids are still going strong.  We added a few fun classes to our schedule this year to keep school exciting. 

Our room is bright and cheery.  I'm thinking....hoping it will keep our spirits up during the long, dark winter days. 

I love my big desk that was already in the building when we started renting it.  It gives me lots of room to spread out as I score papers and test. 

Some days it just doesn't matter how pretty the school room is, I have to pull out my survival kit!

 Happy schooling to all you fellow home-schoolers!

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Sunday, October 19, 2014

Scripture and a Song

I've always loved listening to Christ-honoring, Scriptural music.  In fact, singing in a choir, with my sister, and other family (when we are together) is something I really miss.  When we plan a furlough to the states, one of the things I look forward to the most is the music at church. 
God uses many different things to challenge and encourage His children and for me, music does both of those things in my life.  Today while singing this song that I've heard many times, the truth of its words spoke to my heart again.  Tears filled my eyes as I carefully considered the message.  How easy it gets to complain and despair  Yes, life is hard....days seem long....trials are hard to bear, but don't give up.  Keep your eyes focused on the Lord. It will be worth it all when we see Christ.  

I Peter 1:7 (KJV)
"That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth,
though it be tried with fire,
might be found unto praise and honour and glory
at the appearing of Jesus Christ:"

When We See Christ
Oft times the day seems long, our trials hard to bear,
We're tempted to complain, to murmur and despair;
But Christ will soon appear to catch His Bride away,
All tears forever over in God's eternal day.

It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
Life's trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
So bravely run the race till we see Christ.

Sometimes the sky looks dark with not a ray of light,
We're tossed and driven on , no human help in sight;
But there is one in heav'n who knows our deepest care,
Let Jesus solve your problem - just go to Him in pray'r.

It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
Life's trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
So bravely run the race till we see Christ.

Life's day will soon be o'er, all storms forever past,
We'll cross the great divide, to glory, safe at last;
We'll share the joys of heav'n - a harp, a home, a crown,
The tempter will be banished, we'll lay our burden down.

It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
Life's trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
So bravely run the race till we see Christ.

My fondest memory of this song is when my parents would sing it together -their blend was beautiful.  More importantly was the testimony of their life - they believed every word they sang...and still do. 

What is your favorite verse and/or song that encourages you to keep on when days are long?

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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sarah's birthday

Sarah turned 12 this year.
Following our tradition, we started the day off with the birthday girl's breakfast of choice
french toast with strawberries and a sprinkle of powdered sugar.

 Another tradition in our house:
when you turn 12
mom and dad take you to dinner

The birthday cake

Sarah asked for new bedding.
I found this on line and had the boys bring it back with them.
It was perfect timing for her birthday.
She was glad to replace the bedspread she's had since she was about 3 years old.

I'm so glad God blessed our family with Sarah.

I'm enjoying this stage of her life.

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A day to celebrate

August 13, 2014 was an exciting day for our family!

Daniel and Andrew had been in the states visiting my parents since June.  Wednesday morning we made the 2 hour drive to Tallinn to pick up the boys.  
There were lots of smiles and excitement as we celebrated the boys' return and also welcomed home the birthday boy.   

When we returned to Johvi later that afternoon,  everything was ready to celebrate Daniel's 15th birthday.  Decorations, signs, balloons, dinner, cake, ice cream, and presents.

Ron and I were able to get him a couple of things off his "wish" list.
 an "eye" pad

 and an iphone

Really though, we gave him a nice card with some money for him to spend on what he wanted.

Since Daniel loves root beer and chocolate, I decided to make this Root Beer Bundt Cake.  He loved it....and so did everyone else. 
In case you are interested:
We can not get root beer here, so I used root beer concentrate.  Using this to make root beer is simple and rather tasty.


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Monday, October 13, 2014

Tour our home ~ Master Bedroom

For our 15th wedding anniversary we decided to paint and decorate our bedroom.  
We put a lot of time and thought into this project before we actually ever started it.  Instead of buying a gift for each other, we put our money into this project.  We also added the money from family and churches that was given specifically for our anniversary.
We love how it turned out!

The first thing we had to do was choose the colors.  Once that decision was made, I started looking for a bedspread.  I found this gorgeous purple 10 pc bedding set 50% off.  What a blessing to be able to get a good quality bedding for a great price.  Then a friend brought it over in her luggage.

Pinterest inspired me with the idea of the shelf above the bed.  The glass picture frames on the shelf are the only gift I still have from my wedding.  They were from my parents and are very special to me.  The wall art was purchased off of Ebay at a very reasonable price.

My lamps are also the result of an idea found on Pinterest.  (what would I do without Pinterest???) 
These lamps were very inexpensive because they were so plain and simple.  Just a bit of stylish fabric and the lamps took on an entirely different look.  I love them!

Then there's my little lap blanket....
another touch in my room that warms my heart with special memories.  This blanket belonged to my grandma who is now in Heaven.  My mom saved it for me when I told her what colors we were using in our room "make-over". 

My parents bought this beautiful hand-painted vase for me while they were visiting here last summer. It was a "just because we love you" gift.  Not only does it look beautiful in our room, but it's a daily reminder of the special people God gave me for parents.

For our 16th anniversary, we added this chair to our room.  We had been looking for the perfect chair and I think we found it, don't you?  It's not just pretty, but comfortable too (a rare combination here).

Last Christmas Ron surprised me with this picture.  It holds such simple beauty that accents the room perfectly.
Then I chose the little white stand with black baskets for my birthday this year.  I like having a little something by the chair.
All the extra space along the wall is where my ironing board is usually set up.  Then on the weekends my bedroom is used as the laundry room as I fold a mountain of laundry.  

Sarah shares my love of purple and told me that she hopes her husband lets her have a purple room when she gets married :)

I am blessed with a very lovely room.

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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Tour our home ~ bathroom

It's not the most exciting part of our tour, but none-the-less, it's part of our house. 

We really like the idea of the "bath" room being separate from the "toilet" room.  It just really helps our family of six as we all share these facilities.

The "bath" room is also my laundry room - housing both my washer and dryer.  After living for a couple of years on the field without a dryer, I am so thankful for this modern convenience that makes my chore of laundry easier.

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Friday, October 3, 2014

Tour our home ~ Sarah's room

 My daughter's room is small, 
but so adorably cute and cozy.  

Her room was painted when we moved in to this apartment.  We picked the colors of light green and purple.  During our last furlough I got the letters for her name (50% off at Hobby Lobby) and then covered them with scrap book paper.  The butterflies were also purchased at Hobby Lobby.  Then Ron and I bought her new bedding for her 12th birthday.  We found the throw pillows on clearance and now Sarah and I are looking forward to a sewing project of covering them to match her room.

Sarah loves her dolls.  As she gets older and matures she doesn't play with them much, but every once in a while she'll change their clothes and do their hair.  It's a girl thing.  Her daddy bought her one of her American Girl dolls and the rest were given to her. 

Across from her bed is her closet and bookshelf.

My daughter is such a neat and tidy girl.  She loves to have her room organized and clutter free. 

Sarah is also a very "girlie" girl.  She loves things that are pretty and feminine.  So the dainty little tea cup and the delicate glass humming bird from her grandma were carefully wrapped and brought over for her to set out in her room.  They add a special touch to her cozy room.

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