"....Your children shall be like olive plants all around your table." Psalm 128:3

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Flexi Giveaway

Happy (early) New Year, friends!

Here are the details about the Flexi giveaway that I have been mentioning...

First of all, it was really hard to choose a Flexi for the giveaway because all of them are so elegant and beautiful.

I finally chose the Lovely Circle Borealis, size small.

Here's a photo..
 Beautiful, isn't it?
You can see by the photo that depending on the light, the crystals appear to change color. I must confess that when this Flexi arrived in the mail,  I took one look at it, and almost decided to keep for myself.  ;)

Another photo..

So here's what to do to enter the giveaway..

1. Leave a comment on this post.

Yeah, that's it!  Easy enough, right?

Comments will be open until Sunday.

Then, on Sunday evening, all commenters' names will be put into a hat.

A neutral person (my hubby) will draw the name of the winner, and I will announce the winner right here on Monday, January 5th.

Stay tuned!  :)

Monday, December 29, 2014

Looking Back on 2014

Well, friends..it's that time of year...the time when one year is coming to an end and a new year is just around the corner.

For me, it's also a time of reflection. I look back on 2014 with great sadness. I consider this year The Year of Loss.  

It's the year that I lost my Dad.  It's been the hardest thing I have ever gone through, not only because of how much I grieve for him, but mostly because of how hard his passing has been on my Mom.  I feel as if I lost part of her, too, when Dad passed away...that part of her went with him. And after 60+ years of marriage, I guess part of her left when he did.

It's the year that I lost friends, dear friends...or so I thought. Not in the physical sense. I mean lost them as in... they simply weren't there when I needed them most and haven't bothered to keep in touch since then. 
However, the Lord was so good in the midst of it all. The bright spot of the year was that our firstborn daughter and her family moved only 20 minutes away from us, while they had previously lived a 8-hour drive away. We get to see them so much more now!  :)

Adding up all the difficult things (and believe me, there are so many more things I could list) that happened this year, I can say without a doubt that it was the hardest year of my life. And I couldn't be happier  - or more relieved - to say good-bye (or good riddance!) to 2014.

I know the Lord has a reason for it all, but on this side of eternity, it's hard to understand. I am hoping that it will all be made plain when I get Home.

Philippians 3:13 tells us that we should be "forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead."

That's one Scripture verse I will gladly obey. ;)

May the Lord bless you beyond measure in the coming year.

P.S. To kick off the new year, I am announcing a Flexi giveaway on New Year's Eve. Stay tuned!  :)

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Something to Ponder...

Something to ponder as we prepare for the Lord's Day tomorrow....

Hmmm....but shouldn't every day be the Lord's Day? 

Happy Saturday, friends!  :)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Finished Product

Hi friends,

Remember the curly scarf I mentioned way back when?  (The pattern can be found here.)
Well, I finished it. Actually, I finished it soon after I posted about it. But between school lessons, stomach viruses, and life in general, I sort of forgot to post a photo of the finished product.

So here it is, modeled by Natty...
I was pleased with how it turned out, and I think it looks quite nice on Natty, too.  :)

Next on my crochet project list? An Infinity Scarf.  :)
What's next on your list?

Happy stitching!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Homeschool by Candlelight

Hi friends,

Yesterday we woke up to a chilly, dreary, rainy day. In other words, not a very good day for being motivated to school lessons.

So I decided to spice things up a bit and do school lessons by candlelight. At the mention of this, the children instantly became intrigued..and eager to get started.  :)

We lit candles everywhere. On the baker's rack..

On the piano..

Kindles were read by candlelight..

Copywork was done by candlelight..

Online readings were done by candlelight..

 And yes, even Algebra 1/2 was done by candlelight..   ;)
And I simply couldn't resist lighting my very favorite scented candle, Buttered Maple Syrup. Mmmmmm....

The soft glow of the candles and the wonderful scent of my candle were all it took to get things moving. It's amazing how switching things up a bit can ignite that motivational fire (pun intended!) in my children!

And basking in the glow of the candlelight reminded all of us of the Light of the World and one of our memory verses from last month:  
"Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, 'I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.' " ~John 8:12

Have a blessed day, everyone!

sharing with www.joydare.com

Monday, December 1, 2014

Easy Peasy Artisan Bread Recipe

Good Monday morning, friends,

I come from a long, illustrious line of bread makers. I remember feasting on my Grandma's homemade rolls at every one of her Sunday dinners (and she always had homemade butter to top off those delicious rolls!). And my mom made homemade bread, too; I remember coming home from school and finding fresh-out-of-the-oven-rolls cooling on the kitchen counter. Delicious!

Now, my family loves bread as much as I do, so I am always on the look-out for new bread recipes. And when I friend of mine mentioned how easy Artisan Bread is to make, I decided to give it a try. It was a huge hit: they literally devoured the entire loaf - no left-overs! And it was sooo easy - no kneading! Yippee!  :)

It has become a favorite at our house,and here are some of the things my children have to say about this recipe...

Ian, "Just the right amount of everything."
Aaron, "Moist on the inside, crusty on the outside, and tasty."
Asher, "It's really good with butter."
Natalie, "Delicious!"
Naomi, "It's crusty and delicious."

So for those who are interested, here is the recipe..

3 cups all-purpose flour
2-3 t. salt
1/2 t. active, dry yeast
1 1/2 c. lukewarm water

In a large bowl, stir together flour, salt, and yeast. Add water until a cohesive dough forms. (Do not over work the dough.)

Next, cover the bowl tightly with plastic wrap, and leave it at room temperature for 8-24 hours. The dough will bubble and rise.

Then preheat the oven to 450. Place an ungreased enamel covered (it must be enamel covered to prevent sticking) Dutch oven or crock in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. (Do not put the dough in yet.) While the Dutch oven (or crock) is preheating, shape the dough into a ball with floured hands. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let rest til Dutch oven is ready.

After 30 minutes, carefully remove Dutch oven from oven, and place the dough in it.

Cover the dutch oven tightly with foil. Carefully place it back into the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove foil. The loaf will be light.

Bake for 10-15 minutes more to brown the loaf and make it crusty. Yummy!

 Place the loaf on a cooling rack and cool slightly before slicing.

Serve warm with butter, if desired.

"...It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.' "   ~ Matthew 4:4

 Sharing with Caroline  and  JES

Saturday, November 29, 2014

It's Not Too Late!

Tomorrow is the last day of the Lilla Rose Black Friday sale, so it's not too late to get some great deals on Christmas gifts!

Also, the December Flexi of the month is now available, too, while supplies last!

And stay tuned for a Flexi giveaway...coming next month!  :)

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Black Friday Sale at Lilla Rose

Hi everyone,

There's a big sale at Lilla Rose coming up on Black Friday: get 20 - 50% off everything! And free shipping on all orders over $50! This is a perfect opportunity to get some lovely Christmas gifts for those special ladies on your list.  :)
Thanks so much for your support!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing all my friends a warm and Happy Thanksgiving! And may we have a spirit of thankfulness not just on one day of the year, but all year 'round!

"In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." ~ 1 Thessalonians 5:18

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

A Season of Firsts

October 3rd was my mom and dad's 61st wedding anniversary. Her first one without him.

There was nothing special to celebrate the day, as there had been for the past 60 years.

There wasn't the usual going-out-to-dinner-with-all-the-family celebration.

No re-cap of the story of how my parents met, or the details of their wedding.

No mention of their early days of marriage.

No card shower.


However, the thought of her spending that day alone was unacceptable to me. I wanted to be there with her.

So right after we finished our school lessons that morning, we headed to her house.

(I didn't know what to expect when we got there; her 80th birthday was on September 16th, and naturally, it being the first one without my dad in 60+ years, was a very hard day for her.)

But when we walked in the door, she greeted us with her usual smile and a hug for each of us.

We had lunch with her and spent the afternoon talking, doing a little sewing, and taking a walk.

Of course, we talked about Dad...how could we not talk about him??

Considering the occasion, my mom did wonderfully.

Considering what has happened to her, my mom has done wonderfully.

She has told us many times that she couldn't have made it through Dad's passing without our love and support.

But I couldn't have made it through this without her love and strength. She is the strongest woman I know, and has proven it time and time again over the past 5 months.

The Lord has used her to keep me afloat in this sea of grief. And I would have been swallowed up by it months ago if it wasn't for her.

Oh sure, all the cards, visits, phone calls, etc, were comforting. But early on, and still today, the Lord has used her.


Not to take the glory from the Him; after all, He uses people to minister to us, doesn't He?

And He has used her in a mighty way in my life these past 5 months. One of my sister's has told me she feels the same way; our mom has brought us through this.

When I think about how distraught I am about Dad's passing, the Lord reminds me of Mom. She had a husband for 60+ years and now....he's gone.

No one to cook for. Only half as much laundry to wash.

Not as much cleaning to do.

No one to have meals with, unless one of us is there. 
And this fall is another first: fall was Dad's favorite season. He loved the nip in the air, and the colors on the trees. But this year, Dad isn't here to sit on the porch with her and enjoy the beautiful scenery.

And next Thursday: the first Thanksgiving without him.

Next month: the first Christmas without him.

I can't begin to imagine how hard it has been for her. But when we ask how she is doing, she always says she's "doing ok". She tries to hide her grief to protect us and keep us from worrying about her. This woman thinks of everyone else above herself. She always has. In the midst of this extremely difficult time, she continues to minister to others: taking food to sick ones, visiting in the nursing home, sending cards, making phone calls to check on shut-ins, etc. 

Acts 9:36b describes my Mom so accurately: "This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did." What a godly example she is to everyone who knows her!

My husband put it very eloquently the night before the funeral. He said, "Your Mom is like a precious gemstone: the hotter the fire, the brighter she shines."

 As we continue to make our way through this grieving process, my prayer is that the Lord will continue to uphold my Mom and that her faith will become even stronger...and that I will endeavor to live up to her legacy of strength. 

Have a lovely day, friends.

"Strength and honor are her clothing; she shall rejoice in time to come." ~ Proverbs 31:25

Monday, November 10, 2014

The Battle In My Heart

 "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." ~ Matthew 26:41

Hello friends,

Do you ever feel like there's a battle going on inside of you?

I'll be honest - I certainly do. Every single day my spirit wars against my flesh.

When I wake up in the morning tired and a mile-long list of to-dos staring me in the face,  my flesh tells me that I don't have time for Bible study and prayer. But my spirit tells me that I need that time with the Lord, or I won't be able to get through the day in a way that pleases Him. (Colossians 3:16, 1 Thessalonians 5:17)

When my children bicker, my flesh wants to rant and rave at them. But my spirit wants me to use a gentle tone of voice (1 Peter 3:4), just like my Heavenly Father speaks to me.

When I'm exhausted and in pain from my autoimmune disease, my flesh wants me to get angry at the Lord for allowing it in the first place. But my spirit wants me to endure it with patience. (Galatians 5:22)

When one of my children doesn't "get" a new math concept, my flesh wants to lash out at them. But my spirit wants me to calmly teach the concept again, taking the time to help them comprehend it. (Proverbs 31:26)

When I look around and see the condition of the world today, my flesh wants me to despair, and give up hope. But my spirit reminds me that my God is Sovereign. He is still on the Throne. He is still in absolute control. His purpose will be accomplished. (Isaiah 46:10)

These are just a few examples. I could go on and on. But I won't hang out anymore dirt laundry for now. ;)

So which one wins...my flesh or my spirit? Well, that depends. If I am walking closely with the Lord, my spirit gets the victory. But the opposite is also true - if I'm not in close fellowship with Him, I have very little "ammunition" to win the battle. So my flesh will be the victor. 

You know what I'm talking about. It's a daily struggle, isn't it? As believers, this war won't end until we get to Glory and have our glorified bodies. And what a day that will be!

But until then, keep on keeping on, friends. Keep your eyes in Him. Keep on walking closely with Him. Keep on loving our husbands. Keep on raising our children.  Keep on reading the Word. Keep on praying. And keep looking up. (Titus 2:13)

Remember - we can all things through Christ! (Philippians 4:13)

Have blessed day!

Sharing this week with Caroline and  JES.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

2-day Sale at Lilla Rose

Hello friends,

There's a 2-day sale going on right now at Lilla Rose...10% off select holiday styles and free shipping on orders over $40. 

Lilla Rose haircessories make lovely Christmas gifts!  :) 
Here some of the beautiful holiday Flexi Clips..

 Click the tab at the top of the page to order or go to lillarose.biz/LisaKnight.

Have a great day and

thanks for your support!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Fall Flowers

Hi friends,

Our fall colors have almost completely faded for the season, but recently, I was able to capture some die-hard bloomers that the frost hasn't gotten to yet...

Double-blooming irises...



Dragon's Tail...



Nasturtiums  growing between the deck steps...

 And the very invasive, but beautiful Morning Glory...

Natty created this lovely bouquet with Zinnias, a few Snapdragons, and the very last stalk of our Butterfly Bush...

"The grass withers and the flower fades, 
But the word of our God stands forever." ~ Isaiah 40:8

Saturday, November 1, 2014

The November Flexi of the Month

Hello friends,
The November Flexi of the Month is on sale now...a Compass Rose, with sparkling crackled stones and hematite accents. In a word: beautiful!


Friday, October 31, 2014

The Power of Our Words

"Mothers, be faithful. Don't get discouraged.
Pray for your children, and do not forget to talk to them:
your words will settle down in their hearts.
They never can, they never will forget them.
They may appear not to heed what you say;
they may put on an appearance of thoughtlessness and levity,
which look as though your words were disregarded;
but persevere--- those words are there, and never will be forgotten: but may be called up in years to come when you are dead and gone, and like seed cast in the earth, germinate and produce fruit that shall flourish in immortality."

~Jabez Burns
Mothers of the Wise and Good

Monday, October 20, 2014

Our Newest Student

Good Monday morning, friends,

Some of you may remember my post from a couple of years ago about our homeschool chick. Definitely not your typical, run-of-the-mill kind of student.  :) But it was so much fun having him in the schoolroom every day........ until he got too big and had to be put outside with his feathered friends.

Fast forward two years...

One day last week, Ian brought his pet snake, Samson, upstairs where we were having school. He tried to hold him up to show me how long he is getting...
But Samson wouldn't stretch out and co-operate. He just wanted to curl around Ian's arm to get warm.  :)

So Ian walked over to the table with him, and we made a shocking discovery: we found out that Samson loves reading Aesop's Fables on the Kindle!   Who would have guessed?  ;)

Happy homeschooling!

Sharing with Caroline.