It’s My Birthday

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We lost my Dad last May 25th, 2017 on my Birthday.

He also could not really talk much and I had gone to TN to see my son and my grand-babies. Thinking I would be there for 3 months and it turned into 5 as our van died. But way before we came home to New York, mom called to say Dad wasn’t doing good and could we come home. I had been calling him daily, sometimes a couple times a day. He could talk then… I would always say ” I Love you ” and he would say ” I Love you too “.

I think that is the hardest part for them and for us

( when they cannot tell us what they want to say)

On May 23rd My oldest son Wesley, my youngest son Daniel and I arrived back in New York and on the 24th we went to see my Dad. He couldn’t talk to us or get the right words out. This was very hard for my son Wesley and I, at one point Wes, said he was going outside, seeing his grandfather unable to talk or respond to anything he said was hard. There are so many days that I wish that the hospital had not taken him off the meds he was on, it allowed the infection to spread faster and affect his mind and ability to talk with us.  I wanted so much to hear my fathers thoughts and to hear him say I love you one last time.

All my siblings were there, we took turns visiting him and at one point I think we were all in there in his room. Dad tried to talk, tried to tell us things but not much was audible. I hovered around his bedside and talked to him, he would follow me the whole time with his eyes and each time I would stop near his side or at the end of his bed, he would look at me and say ” Hey “…. and I would ask him what he wanted, ask him if he wanted a drink and he would shake his head no… and I would tell him that I loved him…..  At one point I was standing at the foot of his bed, thinking we would never get a chance to hear his thoughts again or know what he thought of us.

My son Daniel 9 at the time was there and had said Hi to Dad. Dad and Dan would sit and watch TV and talk weekly on our proverbial pizza night at home before we went to TN.

But that day in the hospital, though none of us could understand Dad much and he was very weak and not moving a lot….. out of nowhere, Daddy lifted his hands way up in the air and Literally hollered out ” Daniel ” and everyone went silent and cheered… Daniel was like What? To me, it was a spiritual thing and a way of Dad letting me and Daniel know that we were important to him. That he loved us and wanted Daniel to know that. It was the most loving thing that he was able to do. It will forever be in my heart, that he loved my son so much that he mustered the strength and hollered his name, lifting his hands high in the air…. It was akin to reading about Aaron holding up Moses hands in the bible.

You know I can only hope and pray that before I pass from life to eternal life that I pass on to my kids my belief and faith in our Lord Jesus. To instill in them the desire to serve the Lord, like my Dad did with me. Dad and I were very close all my life…

On my Birthday it was raining and I was in my moms’ kitchen sitting by the window, thinking about my Dad. My siblings all wandering through the house. I prayed a prayer… Lord if it is your will even this day, my Birthday wish is that Dad would go home to glory and be with you and no longer in pain. and literally not more then 3 minutes later my birthday wish came true and my mom called to say that he was gone home to heaven. She had turned around to get something, heard him take a breath and turned back and he was gone. Life is but a vapor and we need to cherish those we love….. Children Obey your parents…..Honor thy Father and thy Mother…

From my lips to God’s ear… In a moment of time…

God answered my prayer

My birthday wish… came true…

( I have never had the Lord answer prayer that fast, but that day He did ! )

That was a year ago today…  I was 53 and Daddy was 76…

Today, I am 54…  I am still missing my Dad so very much…

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Choose Joy: 3-Minute Devotions for Women Compiled by Barbour Staff

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Got 3 minutes to spare? You’ll find the spiritual pick-me-up you need in Choose Joy: 3-Minute Devotions for Women. Written especially the twenty-first-century woman, this delightful devotional packs a powerful dose of comfort, encouragement, and joy into just-right-sized readings. Minute 1: scripture to meditate on; Minute 2: a short devotional reading; Minute 3: a prayer to jump-start a conversation with God. This portable package makes a fabulous any-occasion gift for every woman.

My Review

I really like this Devotional ! It is short and just the right thing to start the day with if your a busy mom. It could also be read to daughters by the mom as a short devotion of God’s Love to share with them as they move into womanhood.  Being  a homeschool mom it is important to me to spend a few minutes with the Lord and this gave me a few minutes if I get up and children are already up. It brings peace and joy to my heart in a few short moments and that is what I needed lately to inspire me.

You can get your copy here:

Paperback

I received a kindle digital copy of this book free for my unbiased review through NetGalley and have received no further compensation for doing so. The opinions expressed are my personal ones and not those of the publisher of this book.

So What if You’re a Failure !

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So you failed… Big Deal !

It’s not about Perfection, It’s About Progress !

We all fail daily and often times then not miserably at many things in life ! Is it the end of the world ?  No !  Can it change your life forever ? Yes , it can !  We all make less then good choices daily that effect the rest of our life in some cases.  They also effect those around us that we love. Sometime we can correct them and sometimes we can’t and just have to live with the consequences of our choices !

What is Excellence ?

Today: The quality of being outstanding or extremely good.

 Synonyms: distinction, quality , superiority, preeminence, supremacy, skill, talent, virtuosity, accomplishment, mastery.

Do you see how the definition has changed ?

 Archaic : An outstanding feature or quality.

From being one of something about you or a quality or character you posses to being something more you attain or do !

It definitely is something that set you apart from others !

How is it Measured ?

In most cases it is measured by how successful you are… or in the things you own or have attained in life. If one is successful it is often said  they are ” Living the Life “.  They may have a huge house,  drive a new car, have an RV, take vacations several times a year and have money to do all that.  And these are the things that make them happy in life !  The sad thing is that in reality happiness does not have anything to do with “stuff”.

 I have often said

 ” I would rather be poor and happy, then rich and have nothing of real value “

Placing value in things that don’t last really doesn’t bring about happiness. It is but a fleeting momentary pleasure.

Happiness is a mental or emotional state of well-being defined by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy.

It is in things that are lasting and not fading that we find contentment and great joy in life.

But godliness with contentment is great gain. I Timothy 6:6

Are you content ? How do you measure excellence ?

What in your life brings you happiness ?

Who Sets the Standard ?

The Government ?  The World ? The Church ?  You ? or God ?

The Government thinks that they can dictate a standard of what Excellent in standard for schooling children or adults.  Sad thing is they offer no standard of excellence in the welfare system, that allows many who could work to sit and not work and still maintain a standard that they say is the least one should live in …

The World seems to set a standard of what they think is Excellence or a standard for Success and what it means. By owning or doing certain things you can attain that standard of living and find real joy they say… I don’t buy into that !

The Church is so worldly and the world so churchy… you can hardly see the difference right ?   How do you tell the difference ?  The same folks you see in church are the same ones you see at the bar, smoking, drinking, being unfaithful to their spouses  and living to excess of riot, which  isn’t suppose to be the case in those claiming  to be ” Christians”

Everyone has their certain set standard of being a success or living the Excellent way..What is yours ?   Whats Mine ? Do they measure up to God’s ?

God’s measure for Excellence…sounds huge, daunting at times doesn’t it… but is it ?  Or do we just think that it entails a ton of rules and don’ts ?  Let’s look at this OK…

The word translated “excellent” in the New Testament comes from the Greek word diaphero, which literally means “to transport” or “to differ”  It has also been translated  as best, vital , the better things and  the highest and best. The Hebrew word translated “excel” is alah meaning ” to ascend.”   (taken from the book ” Becoming a woman of Excellence “) words used to encourage us ” to carry above the norm ” or “to be different” thru the qualities of virtue and goodness.  I like the way Cynthia puts that in this study…

Are we willing to go on to that which is considered above the normal standard of  Excellence ?

How we Fail at Becoming Women of Excellence !

In Ruth 3:11  Ruth is considered to be known as ” A Woman of Excellence”.

She is in my own words Bold, unafraid, fearless and she waited upon the Lord for what was her portion in life.

Are you those things ?  Do you walk without fear ? Are you Bold as you wait upon the Lord’s blessings in your life ?  or are you discontent and unhappy ?

You get up and you see yet another mess your teenagers left and your whole morning just goes wrong…. this was me… they left dirty dishes, it seems like no one cares if Mom has to get up to a sink full after going to bed.  So you go to your computer and set out to blog (its summertime) Your taking a break from homeschooling and your hubby is at work and you wish he was home helping you care for those kids !

You just don’t know where to start things are so messed up.  ( I’m walking it, except my husband is home 24/7 as he is disabled. Mental Illness isn’t easy.. I have a lot of sisters in the Lord who are walking it with me )  He isn’t happy that he can’t do all those things he use to do  ?  His memory is failing as he ages (he’s only 55 )  He doesn’t handle stress well at all and sorry but having teens means “stress” as they figure out who in the world they are…God knows even when they don’t, but they think your as old as dirt and how could you possibly know what they are going through or feeling right ?  You have a son who is 8 who just wants a brother to play with who can keep up with him….(sometimes in large families, Mom gets past the age of childbearing but still has young ones)

Wow I remember those days I longed for another baby, those days I miscarried so many times and now you full well know that “God gives you no more then you can bare”  and finally, you are at that content stage in life where “grandchildren are your most precious blessing !”

What ? Your family is so dysfunctional and you don’t do things together or your older kids live out of state and you hardly see them ?   Or you have some walking with the world and your not sure when they will turn to God in full surrender… but you pray, because praying is all you can do , because they won’t allow you into their life… perhaps they were from a previous marriage and are bitter about your choice to break free of a bondage of an alcoholic abusive ex spouse…  But they pick sides and man that really tares at your heart !

Whatever your stress may be have you found contentment in just knowing that God has it all under control ?   Oh yes he does !  He knows  your heartache, your fears , your tears and your limits….

I don’t care if your rug looks like you could start this years seedlings and grow your garden in it….He Is There !!!  (Tore the rugs out years ago)

I know….it seems like the evil one is trying so hard to ruin your life and your family…

I know your pain…

I have days i cry and days I laugh about it… but failure is some standard we set that we all seem to think holds us in bondage to being less then what God wants us to be…When in reality, God just wants your heart, even when times seem the hardest…

Join me Tomorrow , Lord willing to  talk about

 Wow, Your a Repeated Failure : How we Attain Excellence !

~ Linda Marie ~

Parenting With Grace

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You spend each day wondering if your children will ever see the need in their own lives for the Savior.  Perhaps their words or actions in life you find very saddening.  You surely know that you never treated your parents with disrespect or acted out the way your kids are right ? Maybe its any of the following things that are bothering you as your young people are saying or doing ?

~ Mom, that was you, we don’t want to be like you !

~ But were not tired !

~ Why can’t we wear make up ? ( they are only 10 or 12 years old )

~ I don’t want to change my clothing, I like the way I am dressed !

~ I hate you !

~ I hate my siblings !

~ Your So Old Fashioned !

~ It doesn’t matter how much make up you wear or don’t wear, your still ugly !

 ~ I don’t want to do school !

~ What is wrong with liking boys ?

~ I don’t want to clean my room ! Its clean enough for me !

~ They slammed the door so hard it put the doorknob through the wall again !

~ They said WHAT ?  swore, profaned God’s name…

Yes I hear some of you saying , that child deserves a spanking !  Soap in the mouth ! No Supper !  Loss of something precious to their young minds… ie. TV, tablet, Wii, or going somewhere special…

Isn’t that what your thinking ?

and your saying God’s Word says to spank them… It says He who spares the rod spoils the child… I know all the verses and so do you , I was raised in a Baptist Church, spanked as  a child and I live to tell !!!!  But I also know that at some point spanking when it causes more rebellion, hate and hard feelings, does no good.  Its been so long since I spanked my kids, I can’t  even tell you when the last time was.  I came to a real understanding that, if they couldn’t reason with me and hear my heartache for their lives, it wasn’t going to do a bit of good to spank them.

Do I take away some priviledges ? You bet I do…

The Wii or the Tablet time or TV …. Yup I do.

Do I do  TIME OUT !!! Yes I do… Do we talk a lot about what they are doing wrong and what God expects from them as children ?  Yes we do !!!!

I am so glad that the Father doesn’t always whip my butt for every single thing I do wrong. God has shown me so much Grace and Mercy in my lifetime and I am thankful for that.

As A wise man said to me once ” You cannot beat your kids Souls out of Hell ! “

Yup, I hear you again, but the Bible says it will !

Do you ever think that if we spend more time Nurturing and Admonishing that we might see a change in our children ?

God’s Word says to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.

You know what I remember…  I remember knowing that if I was bad or sinned my mom would spank me for it. But I also know that I didn’t tread that path very often. And  I know that there are things my kids do that my own mom probably thinks they deserve a spanking for today… But I am not my mom and I am Myself.  I want my kids to look back and say, You know what Mom, I probably deserved a spanking for that, but I am so glad that you didn’t do that and that you talked to me and got me to see that I was headed the wrong way… and when I went the wrong way Mom, you prayed for me.

That is true today of my older kids.  I still see them clearly running away from life and from God and there is nothing I can do but Pray, Cry, Pray some more… Talk with them and Pray more… It will do no good, to belittle them, make them feel bad or point out their sin…my older kids know when they are sinning and I have sometimes pointed it out to them when they bold faced say…. Things have changed MOM !  That is culture and its changed now !!!

Really ?  My God has not changed !  His Word has not  changed !

Hard !

What is Grace ?

It is receiving something that you really do not deserve, nor have you hearned it.

What is Mercy ?

Isn’t it the putting off of  punishment and showing Grace when someone doesn’t deserve it.

Have you shown your children God’s Grace and Mercy lived out in their lives through your character ?

or have you lost your cool and said something mean in anger ?

Have you shown your kids God’s Love by loving them…

For God so loved…. He gave….  Gave us something we didn’t deserve and that is Life through His Son Jesus, dying for you and me and for our children…

If you lost it… have you told your kids your sorry and hugged them ?

If you kids have emotional issues and act out… loud , yelling, angry MOM isn’t going to make them do whats right.

It might make them ruin your walls , writing hateful things on them.  It might make them put door knobs through walls.

It  may make them want to leave your house to young and make them walk into sin they have no clue is out there.

They may turn to the wrong people, sometimes even family can be the wrong people… Sometime another young person is the wrong person for your daughter or son to turn to.

Have  you asked the Father to show you where you are messing up with your kids and what you can do to make things right with them ?

and if your a godly parent and your kids are still walking down the wrong road or path and you know your doing everything you can do be walking in His ways and living in holiness…

Don’t beat yourself up, PRAY, Seek Gods Face and Keep Praying.

If your kids are in sin, don’t hide it, talk to someone you trust and find a way to Pray through it and get advice that is sound and godly.

And above all else, trust God’s Word and His Promises where it deals with children.

I know where your at …. None of us are perfect parents…

We all need GRACE and MERCY !

Love your children !

and

Pray !

~ Linda ~

Day 4: The Quilted Heart Omnibus by Mona Hodgson

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The Quilted Heart Omnibus

Like a beautiful patchwork quilt, the three novellas in The Quilted Heart tell stories of lives stitched together with love and God’s unending grace.  Once a week, Elsa Brantenberg hosts the Saint Charles Quilting Circle at her farmhouse on the outskirts of the riverside town of St. Charles, Missouri. The ladies who gather there have all experienced heartache related to the intense hardships of the Civil War, and together, they are facing their painful circumstances with friendship and prayer. Can the tattered pieces of their hearts be stitched together by God’s grace?


Dandelions on the Wind
When Maren Jensen took a job on Elsa Brantenberg’s St. Charles, Missouri farm, she never expected to call the place her home. As she grows to love Mrs. Brantenberg and her granddaughter, Gabi, Maren is transformed from a lonely mail-order bride-without-a-groom to a beloved member of the Brantenberg household. But when Gabi’s father, Rutherford “Wooly” Wainwright, returns to the farm unexpectedly, everything changes for Maren, and she feels compelled to find another job. Are her choices in obedience to God, or is she running from His plan?

Bending Toward the Sun
Dedicated to her education and to helping her father in his general store, Emilie Heinrich is convinced she doesn’t have time for love. But when a childhood friend returns to St. Charles, Missouri, after serving in the Civil War, his smile and charm captures Emilie’s eye and her heart. Will she be forced to choose between honoring her father and a future with a husband and family of her own?

Ripples Along the Shore
Change is brewing in St. Charles. A group of brave souls are preparing to head west on the Boone’s Lick Wagon Train, led by the mysterious and handsome Garrett Cowlishaw, who served as a Confederate soldier in the war that killed Caroline’s husband. Despite her dislike for him, Caroline is tempted to join the wagon train and start fresh somewhere new, but when Mr. Cowlishaw forbids her­a single woman ­to travel with them, will one man’s prejudice destroy Caroline’s hope for a new future? Or will the ripples of God’s love bring the answer she needs?

Click here to pre-order your paperback or eBook copy of The Quilted Heart. (http://waterbrookmultnomah.com/catalog.php?work=220625)

FACEBOOK BOOK RELEASE PARTY!

Please save the date for a Book Release Party for THE QUILTED HEART on Facebook, FRIDAY, January 24th! You’ll find the party in the Notes Section on her “Mona Hodgson Author Page” from 6:00 PM  to 8:00 PM EST, 5:oo to 7:00 PM CST, 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM (Mountain Time) , 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM PM .  Mona will answer questions, give away prizes and share photos and behind-the-scenes stories about the three novellas included in The Quilted Heart omnibus, set in Saint Charles, Missouri.

~My Interview with Mona~

A bit of an author interview :

Something On why you choose this Era and time period ?

Fifteen years ago, I spent a couple of hours in St. Charles, an enchanting city dating back to the 17-and-1800s. In March 2012 I was finally able to return, and the city, its history, and its people­from times gone by and present day­sank deeper into my heart. Imagine my delight when I discovered St. Charles was where Lewis and Clark provisioned for their corps of discovery expedition in 1804. And at the time of my novellas, the riverside city was the stepping off point for the Oregon and Santa Fe Trails, funneling a broad array of people on their journey west.

Quilting , Family ect for you ?

It was the imagery and metaphor that led me to first speak at women’s retreats about The Quilted Heart and then write these stories. I’m not a quilter, but I had two grandmothers who were and my Sis Linda is a quilter. I have the first quilt Linda made to commemorate the birth of my first daughter, Amy.

What old fashioned things do you own, save , collect ?

Read paperbacks. 🙂 My hubby is a yard saler. I have a settee, a small caned rocker, a cask, and an Edison phonograph he restored as part of the decor in my office.

and any other fun things you want to add..smile

BLOG TOUR DRAWING

Leave a comment here, then comment on Mona Hodgson Author Page before Friday, January 31st to enter the BLOG TOUR DRAWING for one of three signed copies of The Quilted Heart. Tell Mona which blog you visited and commented on! You can enter once for each Participating Blog (noted above) you visit and comment on.

Thanks for the opportunity to connect with you followers, Linda.

Hugs and blessings,
Mona

~ Thank you Mona for sharing with us and being such a blessing with your lovely books ! Linda ~
Mona
 Mona Hodgson is the author of nearly 40 books, historical novels for adults and children’s books, including her popular Sinclair Sisters of Cripple Creek Series, The Quilted Heart novellas, and Prairie Song, Book 1 in her Hearts Seeking Home Series. Her children’s books include bestseller, Bedtime in the Southwest, six desert and princess Zonderkidz I Can Read books, Real Girls of the Bible: A 31-Day Devotional, and her six I Wonder books.Mona’s writing credits also include several hundred articles, poems and short stories, which have appeared in 50 different publications. Mona is a speaker for women’s groups, Christian women’s retreats, book clubs and reading groups, schools, and conferences for writers and librarians.

Connect with Mona:

www.monahodgson.com/blog

https://www.facebook.com/Author.Mona?ref=hl

Remeber: Leave a comment on Mona’s Wall (Link Above) for a chance to win a copy of these three novella in one volume !

http://www.pinterest.com/monahodgson/

https://twitter.com/MonaHodgson

My Thoughts:

Being a lover of historical fiction, I so love this series that Mona has written.  I have always considered myself a woman born out of my time.  I grew up watching shows like Little House on the Prairie, so I automatically feel in love with this series !  Life may be full of hardships, but it is blessed by friendship, love and wholesomeness , that is rare today.  I am so looking forward to reading Mona’s book Prarie Song, as this series was the prequel to it.  I have to say that I wish personally that this story could go on and on… but I suppose that all good things must come to an end but don’t you just hate it when a story ends ?   Will there be more ?  I hope you all will read this series and then go on to read Mona’s book Prairie Song, Book 1 in  Hearts Seeking Home !

Today’s Quilt Pattern   The Winner is….. Chris B !!!

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Giveaway: Each Day I will be offering a different Quilt E-pattern.

This e-pattern will be emailed to the winner  by me, I have purchased these special for this weeks giveaways !

They are sold by martingale.com.   So you want to know how you win right…Here it is !

Each thing you do will get you 1 entry ok…

1.  Like my facebook page and leave me a comment telling me you have done so here in comments.

https://www.facebook.com/peacefulacrehomestead

2.  Follow Me on Twitter and leave me a comment here telling me you have done so.

https://twitter.com/faithfulacres7

3. Follow Me on Pinterest and leave me a comment telling me you did so.

http://www.pinterest.com/faithfulacres/

4.  Leave Me a comment here  telling me about your family quilting adventures or  a quilt in your family.

Please Leave a separate comment for each entry.

There will be a daily drawing (winners announced at the end of the week and at the end of the week will be the surprise drawing.)

The person who comes each day this week and comments daily, will be entered in a Special Surprise Giveaway ! ( Something Special from Me)

Blessings and Much Love,

Linda