A Place Called Home

Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life and attend to your own business and work with your hands. 1 Thessalonians 4:11

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Location: Wetumpka, Alabama, United States

I am a wife of 38years and a mother of six, mother-in-law to four, and grandmother to twelve. I just completed my 24th year of homeschooling. I have lived many years of my adult life in Italy and Greece.

Sunday, December 31, 2006

Happy New Year





Justin and Chelsea surprised us and came and spent the evening with us. They celebrated their first anniversary last night. It's hard to believe an entire year has passed. She brought a carload of fabric samples from Ethan Allen. It was better than Christmas!! I have so many projects swimming around in my head! We've played Pictionary, toasted with Italian soda, and are now redy to salute the new year. May you all be richly blessed by God in the new year!!

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Homemaking


We're back home now and I've spent the day taking down the Christmas decorations and getting organized for the new year. I love new beginnings and the chance for a fresh start.The boys and I will be beginning a new curriculum next week which I'm really excited about. They will love all of the new books, though the new grammar workbooks may not be a favorite:)I downloaded some new forms from www.organizedhome.com for my homemaking journal, and am all set for their 12 week spring cleaning challenge.As much as we enjoyed our holidays, we are both so happy to be back home.Terry has his new HUGE television set up (a gift from Jon, Justin and Chelsea)and I'm beginning to think it may be kind of hard to get him to leave all this for Italy in the summer! I have several sewing projects in the planning stages. There are simply not enough days to accomplish all that I would like to accomplish. But hopefully, with organizing my days a bit better I will make better use of my time and get to my scrapbooking, schooling, sewing, reading, lacemaking...

Christmas Day 2006

This morning we woke up at about 6AM to the voices of our sons Brandon, Jordan and Christian. The little boys were wide awake with excitement, and Brandon was wide awake from jetlag! It was such a joy to lay there and listen to them giggle and tell jokes.At 7AM we all lined up behind the papered over doorway, by age- Gabriel was in front- and then ran through the paper! Santa had arrived! There were darts flying from crossbows, the thumps of a pogo stick from the kitchen, and much oohing and awwing over gifts (except for the cries of frustration from Chelsea because Justin had ducttaped her gift so she wouldn't look at it ahead of time! We are so blessed with our family and friends.My children have grown up now, and instead of it saddening me the way I thought it would, it had brought me such joy to watch them chase their dreams. This was a special year for all of us.

He's Home! He's Engaged!!


After much prayer...Brandon arrived safely home from China on Christmas Eve! It just made Christmas so special having all of the children here. Last year he had to miss Christmas and his sister's wedding, so we all rejoiced that he made it home safely. The evening of his arrival he proposed to Kristin Barnes and she said YES! God answered our prayers with this precious young lady who loves Brandon very much. She has been such an encouragement to him during his time in China. It will be exciting to watch this new family being formed, and to see God at work in their lives.They will be marrying this Spring and then will be leaving to do mission work in Italy.We are grateful, also, for her wonderful family who have raised such a fine daughter (and son:)She is a beautiful young woman, inside and out. Welcome to the family, Kristin.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

A Rainy Day


Terry woke me this morning with the best ever Christmas present...we're not leaving for Searcy until tomorrow. I stayed up past 2AM getting all of the presents wrapped and am just worn out this morning.It is raining hard and my house still needs cleaning.I'm so looking forward to getting there because I can then relax and enjoy my grandson and children, but I want a clean house to come home to next week.So, I've just finished cleaning the downstairs, and it is all sparkly and Christmasy. Now I will even have some time to finish some little extra sewing projects for various family members, Terry can get the oil changed in the car, and we can have a bit of quiet before the storm!Last night the boys received a package from their grandparents in Texas.The timing could not be more perfect. This morning, to help with their profound disappointment:) at not going today, I let them open their gifts of four of the ultimate coolest Bionicles they'd ever seen!!Sheri, if you're reading this, they could not have loved any gift more!They are now happily ensconsed in the family room, talking and playing non-stop. They are going to go Christmas shopping with their Dad today for gifts for their brothers and sisters, we'll share a pot of soup this evening, and then head "home for the holidays"! Enjoy your families!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Happy Holidays!


We are so blessed this holiday season. Last weekend we closed on our house, and graduated two children from college, all within a 24 hour period. The gratitude I feel for my Father has no bounds. For the first time in five years I do not have two in college and two mortgages! Our time with family and friends was wonderful. Yesterday, my friend, Dana, and I spent the day shopping together. We had such a good time. We were celebrating my fun week, and hers, because her husband finished his PhD!!When I returned home I found out my husband had invited my in-laws for supper, so I hurriedly got food on the table and we shared a nice family visit.This was easily done because my neighbor Jackie had just dropped by a loaf of her sourdough bread and a bag of Chex Mix:) Right as we were finishing our meal the doorbell rang and we had carolers (several dear sweet friends and their children).I passed around some Swedish gingersnaps in a wonderful red tin, that I had just purchased for a moment like this! This morning the boys and I have spent making fudge, peppermint bark and decorating sugar cookies for our friends at church. The holidays are so much more fun when you live in a community surrounded by so many fellow believers. Again, we are so blessed. Tomorrow we head to Searcy to be with my family. Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

Monday, December 11, 2006

Birthday and Burnt Chicken


Saturday was a special day as I was woken up by Terry and the boys with breakfast in bed (Terry had bought biscuits and sausage gravy at Jack's), two wonderful cards and a a beautiful set of candles.We headed into Jackson for the day and visited Hobby Lobby and Books-a-Million( I found the newest issue of Creative Needle, their baby issue)...and then had a wonderful lunch at Red Lobster. We went and picked up our family ornament for the year (the antique radio from Hallmark)and then headed home. In the evening we piled in the car and headed out to Chickasaw for the light display. We came home and watched "Over the Hedge", visited with Grandpa, and then I sat down to read several of my favorite blogs.There are several "crafty sewing" ones I especially enjoy.I've recently organized my sewing room and have gotten some aprons and baby gifts madeand I'm still needing to put the boys names on their new robes.Anyway, while reading www.pleasantviewschoolhouse.blogspot.com I decided to put chicken on to boil for chicken salad- Sunday lunch.Well, an hour later, after a child came in throwing up, followed by a birthday phone call from another child, I smelled smoke. Heavy acrid smoke:)I now have one less kitchen towel, an empty can of Febreze (my husband got a bit ambitious), one less pan, and a burnt porch railing.And NO Sunday lunch!Next time I'll focus on the precious felt Christmas ornaments on www.allsorts.typepad.com! Oh, for those who have asked. Our house is to finally close on Thursday. Keep your fingers crossed!!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Graduations, Jobs...Busy Family Life

Life has been a whirlwind lately. We shared a wonderful time together with all of our family celebrating Thanksgiving at Chelsea and Justin's. We stayed up late playing Pictionary, Justin and Jon spent an evening bonding in line at Wal-Mart waiting for the sale TV:), and Chelsea and I had a fun shopping trip on the day of the sales, and a lunch at Olive Garden. I've been busy sewing various Christmas projects--I gave the girls their Christmas Advent calenders and Christmas aprons early. It's so much fun to see my daughters creating their own welcoming homes.Katie and Tim are busy preparing for the arrival of baby Maria. We can all hardly wait.Chelsea leaves this Sunday for two weeks at Ethan Allen headquarters for job training. She's a bit apprehensive (her first trip away from Justin) but I know she'll have a great time. She's good at what she does and she's loving her new job. She graduates from FHU on Dec. 15.Jon has just accepted a job with Dell Computers in Nashville. He graduates from Harding on December 16!Two graduations, Christmas,two birthdays, a son returning from China, and a new granddaughter--all in the next month or so. And to top off all of these blessings...Lord willing, we will close on the sale of our house in Searcy in the next couple of days. They are finishing up the last of the paper work, we sign, and then it's done!!It has been five years since we moved to Greece, and since then, we have stayed there off and on, but have had it rented out most of the time-- with some bad renter stories here and there! This is such a blessing to have this burden lifted. Please join us in prayer that all will go well and it closes this next week. I'll keep you posted.Brandon called from China yesterday and is busy making plans for his new life with Kristin.We received word last week that his full-time missions support is looking good, though not official yet.The FHU board approved the new academic program in Italy, so Terry and I and the little boys will be leaving in May to spend the summer and fall in Tuscany.We're looking forward to this next adventure and are so grateful for the doors God has opened for our family. Jordan and Christian are busy little guys. They do a lot of skateboarding, bike riding, soccer, video games, etc. They are both doing well in their schoolwork, especially enjoying the Math class they do online. They really have a knack for Math. Well, I need to get started with our school day. Tonight we are going to see "Happy Feet" at our local theater.We've created some neat memories with the boys at this theater...two minutes from our house, clean movies, popcorn and drinks-$5 on family nights! Can't beat small town America!