Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Cheryl Mendelson's Home Comforts: The Art & Science of Keeping House made my list of 40 Great Reads and I have to say that I absolutely love this book! It is the most comprehensive collection of homekeeping information I have ever seen. Martha Stewart has nothing on this woman.
A few years ago, our son's dust allergy required some fairly significant household changes. We got some good information from our allergist, but the bulk of what I learned came from this very book. There is an entire section on dust and dust mites.
When our sinks were draining slowly a couple of weeks ago, I pulled out Home Comforts and found some great tips on cleaning the drains. It was great fun, too. Any time vinegar and baking soda are involved, I get really happy. The best thing was that when I was finished there was a noticeable difference, and I now have some strategies to keep things flowing smoothly.
Every corner of our homes are explored. Cleaning all kinds of surfaces with homemade, less caustic solutions is well-covered, and laundry questions are thoroughly explained. The list of topics is exhaustive. Keeping house is regarded as an admirable pursuit, both an art and a science.
I like to read bits and pieces here and there. I'll peruse a section for a while, and when I put the book down I find myself looking around my home to see what I can immediately put into practice.
Cheryl Mendelson inspires me make my home a more comfortable, inviting place for our guests and for ourselves. There's no place like it.
Sunday, October 26, 2008
She has also graciously provided the pattern and instructions for this delightful little pincushion. I printed it out a couple of weeks ago with plans to crank out a couple when I had a spare minute.
Choosing coordinating fabrics, ribbon, and buttons is truly half the fun. This little project came together quickly, although the ribbon tufting can be surprisingly tricky.
This one is a gift for a sweet young lady who was not feeling up to the paintball escapade we hosted at our home yesterday. After all, if you can't run around in a field with people shooting at you all morning, working on a project with a cute pincushion is a nice alternative.
You were missed, Bethany!
Saturday, October 25, 2008
The next project will more likely be the window treatments. I'm thinking a very simple tailored valance. Any ideas?
Sleep tight, big guy. Love you.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
The good news about the quilt is that we have our living room back as of yesterday afternoon when we took that baby out of the frame. Oh, it is so wonderful to have things back to normal in that room. My family was so sweet about having to lie under the quilt or peer over it during family devotions or watching TV. Having a tent or a fort in the living room is less of a novelty to them these days.
My fingers sighed a desperate, "Thank you," with the end of the quilting phase. Although I have no feeling in two of them, at least they will have an opportunity to heal.
Now I'm hemming the edges, and then we will be one step closer to a new bedroom. Pillow shams are forthcoming. I promise a photo of the finished product.
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Lots of information about marine mammals has been sneaking its way into our brains, and our last two modules have covered whales, seals, and sea cows. All of these creatures have a layer of blubber under their skin, and this experiment was designed to show its purpose.
We began by putting two rubber gloves on one hand and immersing that hand in a bowl of ice water. We used a stopwatch to clock how long our experimenter could comfortably keep his hand in the water. (1 minute, 23 seconds)
Next, we put one glove on the other hand and covered it with a thick coating of vegetable shortening. You could also use petroleum jelly.
We then covered this disgusting object with another rubber glove. Oh yeah, we had waffles for breakfast that morning.
This hand, with its layer of blubber, was then placed in the ice water to demonstrate the difference a layer of blubber can make for a whale or a walrus swimming in icy waters.
The contrast was apparently very dramatic because as I started the timer, my son said, "Mom, you can go watch a movie if you want."
Science experiements can really stress me out, especially when they don't work, but this one was pure fun and pretty much foolproof. You can do it. Come on, give it a shot.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Friday, October 10, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
and the fun
all added up to a wonderful birthday afternoon.
It was so much fun to host a birthday party for my precious grandmother. Several friends from her Sunday School class and her craft group joined us yesterday afternoon for a time of celebration.
They brought sweet gifts of homemade jellies and crocheted goodies, flowers, sweet smelling stuff, and other things to pamper a special lady. We enjoyed refreshments and even a silly TV commercial jingle game complete with prizes for the best and worst scores.
After everyone had gone home, Grannie told me that she'd never had a birthday party before. I was amazed, but I think it was about time. We'll definitely have to do it again next year.
Monday, October 6, 2008
She's a classy lady with amazing gifts and abilities. I have always thought she could do absolutely anything. Some of my fondest memories are of times spent at her house doing all manner of fun things that I probably would not be doing at home. She's helped me become the person I am, and I am so rich because of what she's poured into me.
We are all amazingly blessed by our sweet Grannie, and today we joyously celebrate her birthday.
We love you, Grannie!
Friday, October 3, 2008
In addition to these canned goods, we have a full freezer and several pounds of dried apples to get us through.
God is good.
Thursday, October 2, 2008
Inside this gorgeous bag were several individually wrapped gifts, labeled by decade. Along with each one were scripture verses appropriate to that time period.
The First Ten Years, The Days of Childhood
Jelly Belly jelly beans
Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it. Proverbs 22:6
(Sorry, no photo for this one. I can't imagine what happened to those yummy Jelly Bellys.)
The Second Ten Years, The Days of Fashion, Big Hair, and Makeup
Shaving cream for fights and shaving, clear lip gloss, hair spray, and stationery for staying in touch.
1Timothy 2:9 Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly...by means of good works as is proper for women making a claim to godliness.
The Third Ten Years, The Blessings of Marriage and Children
Bubbles, baby powder, Band-Aids, and a laundry bag
Ephesians 5:24-6:4 Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord...For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and shall be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh...Children obey your parents in the Lord...bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord.The Fourth Ten Years, The Joys of Finding Adventures and Making Memories, A New Home, Travel, and Growing Responsibilities
A picture frame and world map
Psalm 127 Unless the Lord builds the house, They labor in vain who build it...Behold, children are a gift of the Lord.
The Decades That Are Yet to Come, Lord willing
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Titus 2:3-5 Older women...are to be reverent in their behavior, not malicious gossips nor enslaved to much wine, teaching what is good, so that they may encourage the younger women...
She is incredible, and she's my friend!
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Thanks to Unc, AL, and Brian for sharing their trip with us.
Thanks to Mara and her trusty guide book for revealing Oahu to the less informed.
Thanks to Perry who snorkeled with his dad in the face of an angry (OK maybe not that angry) eel.
Thanks to Liam who provided the reading material and plays a mean Tonga drum.
And especially thanks to Wendy who makes every day paradise.
Anne Shirley would call her, "my bosom friend," and she certainly is that. She knows my heart, has seen me at my best and at my worst, and she loves me anyway. I am so thankful!