Sewing, Anyone?

This is dress number 2 that will be posted on EBAY. I finished it yesterday….I think it turned out pretty well. It’s a little big on Emma.

We’ve not done a project in a while so I thought that Monday, we would begin a sew-along.

For those with no sewing experience, this should be a great beginner’s project: a rice sock. We will begin on Monday with an explanation of the basic parts of a sewing machine and work our way on from there.

This project will require the following:

sewing machine
white thread
rice (always use white rice for rice socks….brown rice develops a nasty smell after awhile!)
no fray or a glue like Aileen’s that will not wash away
1/4 yard of solid fabric
1/4 yard of printed fabric
1/2 yard of ribbon to coordinate with fabric

That’s it. You can look back in the post from May 15 entitled “Mother’s Day” to view a sample of our project. We’ll just take a couple of steps a day so don’t feel overwhelmed…and when we are done, I’ll enlist Paul’s help in posting the instructions all in one place so they will be easier to read.

This will be the first of many sewing projects…maybe we’ll even get around to quilting one day!! : )

Late last night, I came in to read a post that my friend, Angie, posted on her website (

I actually woke up this morning thinking about this.

Uuuummmmm, this is the part where I warn you that I’ve just dusted it off and I’m about to take a step onto my soapbox.

Let’s see where to begin….I have years worth of venting on this subject. (Don’t worry, I don’t think that this post will take too long.

I am a mom of eight. Yes, gasp, I know……most of you already know this but for those who don’t I just thought I would place that on the table so that we know the important facts here.

I did not start out to be a mom at all. In fact, growing up, I can remember thinking that anyone who would have more than one or two children must be foolish and irresponsible.

All through high school I planned my life…college and then career. Paul and I dated for a few years before we were married and we still had no plans for this life that we are living…our lives were going to be much more “tidy”….college, career, go to church every Sunday, buy a house…have a good life.

It’s funny the twists and turns a life takes. I felt so “enlightened” then. So much like I had the world at my fingertips and I would have that perfect life by doing everything that those around told me would put me there.

Now, fast forward to the morning at the big church I was attending, to my dear friend Christy and I sitting at the welcome center as people brought their children into church and signed them into the children’s department. I’m not sure how many people made comments about the size of my family that morning while Christy and I were sitting there, but it was with the comment that went something like “it must take you all day to sign all your kids in…” that made Christy turn to me and ask “don’t you ever get tired of that?”.

I thought about that for many months and still do from time to time. I guess I had gotten so used to it that it was easy to ignore. After all, I know that they most likely weren’t trying to be rude, or were they?

I have, in fact, listened to these comments for years…..I even met a friend in the grocery store who has 10 children once…after she left I could over hear the cashiers saying to each other things like “what is wrong with that woman”, “doesn’t she know that people are supposed to know better than that these days?” and so on and so on.

So, Angie, this one is for you, and for my other friend, and for all those who have ever made a comment about stay-at-home moms, or big families, or home schoolers, or just for women who make the decision to (ooohhhh, another gasp, gasp) stay married and work at home in a day when the world would tell you that it’s better to “shop around”.

First, I would like to say that I AM more enlightened now.

I am following the Lord’s direction for my life. That’s about as enlightened as anyone can get! This does not mean that my life is easy. In fact, I have to say that it is much more difficult to go against the world’s standards. The Scripture tells us that we are strangers in this world (1 Pet 2:11 “Dear friends, I urge you, as aliens and strangers in the world, to abstain from sinful desires, which war against your soul.). We have to resist the things that are not of God. This means that we should be living life according to the Word and not according to the world.”

I’ve got to interject one more thought here and it is this: there are many pastors (not to be read as all pastors), that are not teaching the word of God. They are teaching the world. I’m not saying that they mean to (or maybe they do), but in their efforts to not ruffle feathers within their congregations, they refrain from teaching the very Word that they profess to teach! The Bible says: 2 Pet 2:17-20 “These men are springs without water and mists driven by a storm. Blackest darkness is reserved for them. For they mouth empty, boastful words and, by appealing to the lustful desires of sinful human nature, they entice people who are just escaping from those who live in error. They promise them freedom, while they themselves are slaves of depravity– for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him. If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning.” NIV

I would like to say to the things that Angie (you were right on girl!) mentioned in her post:

On The Duggar Family: It’s time that for once America had some real role models. At best, our children see musicians who in vast majority have filthy mouths and even filthier lives, politicians who will say one thing and do the opposite, how about anyone on T.V.? Is there even one that is a good role model? I bet you could count them on one hand. …but, here, is a family. A really big family (praise God!) working together to build their own home (debt-free, I might add!), spending precious time with their children, working in their local government and trying to follow the Lord’s leading in their lives. I’m not sure why it is so easy to make fun of people who seem to be doing the right things. Why are we not more likely to single out those who parade themselves around half dressed or make no time to parent their children or will not give up their seat for a pregnant woman in a waiting room? What has happened to us?

Am I being irresponsible for having so many children?: Absolutely not. My faith for everything is in my Father. Luke 12:22-24 “Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds!” (NIV) God will provide what we need…in one way or another. I would rather always that my faith be in Him….I can’t imagine having depend on anything or anyone else! : )

We’ve even apparently been responsible enough to plan our retirement…though this part was not intentional! My cousin once commented that while everyone is worried about paying for their retirement….we have created the ultimate retirement plan. He said that surely out of eight children, one of them would be willing to care for us when we were elderly! I chuckled…I had never thought of this before.

Are we “backwards” for having so many children? I mean, people just don’t do this anymore!: On the contrary, I was not raised to believe these things, I’m an only child and Paul is one of two children. We have prayed and felt directed in this area. We made these tough decisions when we knew no one else doing so. Is this backwards? I don’t think so….I’m applauding those who are making tough decisions even though they know that others are not going to approve.

Here are the questions we hear nearly every time we are out with our children…. (and I do mean every time…many of you have been with me and heard these or have had these comments yourselves)……..

“My goodness, are these all yours?” “Yes, they are.”

“Your hands must be very full!” “Yes, I’m very blessed!”

“Don’t you know what causes that?!” I’m not sure at what point it became O.K. to ask such a personal question but our responses range anything from me saying “yes” to a comment that my husband makes that you’ll have to ask him for yourself because I won’t type it here! LOL!

“You need to fix that!” “I’m not broken! In fact, judging from the sweet little faces gracing my home these days…I would say I’m quite good at growing little ones!

“You need to get a TV!” Yes, this was a comment made to my husband in front of a group of men he works with. He decided that this was rude enough…it didn’t merit a response.

“I’m glad it’s you and not me!” “Well, me too!….I’m so glad that God is blessing my home!”

“How do you afford all of them?” The fact is, if you read Parent’s magazine, most of us can’t afford a child, much less a house full of them, but let’s get down to reality. Children really don’t need all the things that we give them. Any Grandmother will tell you that she lived without half the things on the “must have for parenting” lists and so can we. Even so, we’ve never went without. Things may be tight but they are wonderful.

“Don’t you worry that someone will be left out?” These people have obviously never been in my home. There is no where for someone to be left out. I would dare say that there is never a moment when someone could be left out. I had someone say to my newborn son, Benjamin, “bless your heart, you probably get stuck over in a corner and forgotten about!”….I giggled knowing that I have to tell the children constantly to put the littles down in my home. Just this morning I had people lining up to play with Emma. If anything, it makes them a little rotten!! 🙂

“You can have it! I have one and I can’t handle him!” This is the saddest of all comments to me. Parenting is very easy. There is no secret formula. Children are no different today than they’ve ever been…parents on the other hand, are becoming more and more selfish. They are more concerned about having “their time” or money to spend on new clothes or a new car than they are with spending time training and loving their children. Don’t think for a minute that the children aren’t aware of their parents motives.

15 years and I wouldn’t change a thing. I hope that the Lord continues to bless our home and our family. There is no greater blessing than the gift of a child. I’m surrounded by people who hate their jobs and after years and years of them are burned out. On the other hand, I’m so blessed that the Lord has allowed me this time to be in my home with my family. Each day is a new adventure….a new experience…..another hug…..another “I love you”!

I’m a stay at home mom…not because my husband demands this of me but because we both have made this decision knowing that our investment of my time and energy now will reap rewards so numerous they can’t be counted.

I’m sorry for the “hot topic” this morning….I’m usually very nice about this topic and just smile and go on (I have witnesses to this!). This morning I just had to speak out.

I’m tired of feeling singled out for trying to do the right thing. When did it become wrong for a woman to want to be a Mom or a wife?

For the record, when my friend (mentioned earlier in the posting), left the store, I walked up to the cashiers and told them that I knew the woman personally that had just left. She had a wonderful and loving family and that they had no right to talk about her.

Prayer Requests

Emma has a Dr. appointment today.

The Botkins are speaking in town this week. Pray that ears will hear, eyes will see and hearts will be changed.

Rain, rain, rain,….

Today, I’m Thankful For

God placing like minded people in my life. I’m so blessed by others around me I see that are following His will in their lives.

The beautiful cardinal that has been feeding outside my office window this morning.

Almost completing one of the dolls I’ve been working on.

Paul’s meetings yesterday all went well.

Sprouting garlic in my garden.

Tracy’s Tasks

Today, because of the Dr. appointment, we’ll be rushing to get many of our tasks done. I am going to take the time to make appointments for my other children.

What I’m Learning

I’m learning how to make dolls…this may be one of our sew-alongs some time soon!

Today’s Scripture Meditation

“Lord that you might write Your Word on my heart….”

2 Tim 3:13-17
“while evil men and impostors will go from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived. But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

From my heart,

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