Friday, September 18, 2015

Indoor Bible Scavenger Hunt!

My children have been very into creating scavenger hunts for each other lately.  I'm not at all sure where that obsession came from, but it's been fun to watch them.  So when I was trying to decide on something special to do for Friday night worship, it just seemed like a perfect idea to create a scavenger hunt using the Bible!   It was so much fun that I thought I'd share it here.  :)

We started off the game by reading Psalms 119:105 - "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path."  I told them that God's Word was really going to guide their path this night!  And I sent them on their way by giving them their first Bible verse to look up and try to figure out where it was leading them.  They were off and running!

We went through all of the clues and the final clue led them to a bookcase where I had hidden cake!  It was quite a hit.  :)

So here you have it!  An Indoor Bible Scavenger Hunt...  make it your own...  use as many or as few clues as you'd like.  Make up your own clues - there are so many options in that Great Book!  Look around your home and find an object that you could hide a clue in/on and then look up that word in a Bible concordance or online and find a Bible verse that you could use as a clue.  :)   For instance, my son Nicholas has a feather collection on his wall.  Most people wouldn't have that, so I didn't include it in the PDF, but we used the verse Psalms 91:4 - "He shall cover thee with his feathers..."  It made it a little extra special.  :)

Click on the graphic above to download your copy.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Sermon Book for Kids!

"Mommy, how much longer is this going to be?!"

Surely you've heard it before!  The kids are finished reading the handouts from their class, and now they want to know when it's going to be time for potluck!

I've been wanting to put something together for my kids for a long while now.  Something that would encourage them to listen during the sermon.  We've been blessed with a really great pastor, and I thoroughly enjoy every sermon he presents.  And we've had some great guest speakers as well.  At eleven years old, I feel that my older boys could certainly gain something by listening up!

I found lots of ideas online and just pulled them all together and made a bunch of different pages.  I am sharing them here for free.  I'll include a separate link for each page and you can choose to print out as many of each as you would like.

My Sermon Book - cover page

Key Word Alphabet and Count - Listen for keywords and fill in all the letters of the alphabet!  Additionally, see how many times you hear certain words during the sermon.

Key Word Hangman - Play hangman using a keyword or phrase from the sermon.

Key Word Scrabble - Create your own scrabble board by writing sermon keywords in the grid.

Sermon Drawing - A page to draw something related to the sermon.

Sermon Notes - More advanced sheet to record songs, prayer requests, scripture reading and other scriptures mentioned as well as a place to write something more about the sermon.  Also includes a place to write words that they don't understand so you can help them with them later.

I hope these pages are helpful to you as well!  Enjoy!

Friday, January 23, 2015

Our Journey Thus Far

Looking back on our life to early 2011 it's almost painful to remember how different it was.  Up until that time, we were completely caught up in the rat race.  We owned a huge house in a beautiful, suburban neighborhood with a gorgeous pool and a bunch of cars, including my husband's dream Porsche.

I shopped at Nordstrom and had clothes in my closet with tags on them that I never wore.  Our kids had everything they could possibly need or want.  And yet, it was never enough.  That's how society taught us to live.  I remember Eric's former boss telling him to buy more things - big things - because he wanted him in debt so that he would continue to be a motivated worker.

But our kids were in a private, Christian school where I was the Home & School Leader (think PTA) and we attended church.  Wasn't that good enough?  Weren't we living the American dream?


It wasn't until I became part of a women's group at our church/school that my mindset began to change.  I developed a deeper relationship with Christ than I ever had and I started to see things differently.  I began to have very different desires in my heart.  Things started changing in my personal life - I no longer had the desire for certain things and so I let them go.

Eric and I started to talk about our future in a much different way.  We realized that this was not the way we wanted our kids to grow up.  We could already see the entitlement issues in them.  They had no appreciation for everything that they had, even after several trips to Thailand where they had seen a much different way of life.

In July of 2011 we started talking about selling our house.  We were seriously considering relocating to Thailand to do some sort of missionary work.  Neither of us had any skills that typical missionaries have, but we knew of a family that had done a similar thing and just jumped in with both feet and were being quite helpful.  We figured we could go help them!

After thinking long and hard about moving away from all of our family, we decided to let that part of our dream go for a while.  My mother-in-law was battling cancer at the time and it just didn't feel right leaving.  We were still unclear about what our next move would be, however.

In December of 2011 we put our house on the market.  It was an ugly time to be selling a house!  We put complete faith in God.  He knew our desire to shift our hearts and we knew He would bless us.

By this time I was starting to feel out-of-place in a school that I thought should be everything we wanted and so I made the decision to pull my boys out and begin homeschooling them.  This was something we had planned on doing when we planned on having children, but it just never fit in quite right with the life we were living.

Knowing that our house was on the market and not knowing when it might sell, we decided it would be best to start homeschooling right after the holiday break so that we could get into the groove while I still had access to a teacher I adored who was willing to help me.

Towards the end of January, 2012, we visited my in-laws and our property in West Virginia and got the bug for country living!  It seemed a whole new plan was to unfold.

In February, less than 3 months after we put our house on the market, we had an offer!   Soon after, our house was under contract!  Not having a firm plan in place for our next big move, we decided to rent an apartment for a year to get things figured out.

Let me just tell you a little something about living in a house that was over 6800 square feet during a time when we were buying anything and everything our hearts desired!  We had accumulated a LOT of stuff!!  And we were moving to an apartment that was just 1300 square feet.

I can honestly say we made a valiant effort to pare down our belongings.  We sold things, we gave things away, we donated to Goodwill.  Lots.  And yet, when moving day came, we still had more stuff than we knew what to do with.

We moved to our apartment.  And to our two rented garages.  And to our five storage units.


Life in the apartment was oddly good!  We enjoyed having so much less space.   And that year flew!

In early November I took all 4 kids and my mother and went to Thailand for three months!  What an experience for the kids!  Eric was able to visit us for a few weeks around the holidays.  My best friend and my mother-in-law also visited!

Coming back from Thailand in late January meant that our lease was going to be up in just a few short months!  We still didn't have a plan for exactly what we were going to do on our property in WV, so we decided to start looking for a rental there.

By March of 2013 we were moving into our WV rental.  All of our storage units moved with us and completely filled our oversized 2-car garage!   This picture is part-way through filling it - and that was just of stuff that we didn't actually need to live!  We'd lived without it for a year already.

Sometime during that year I was led to a book by Joshua Becker called Clutterfree with Kids: Change your thinking. Discover new habits. Free your home.  It was life changing for me!  It literally changed the way I thought about stuff.  I was finally able to really purge.

Plans were under way to get our building spot ready.  We had a perc test and got a septic permit.   Our property surrounded my in-laws' house and we were excited to get started!

And then things started to look worse for my mother-in-law.  :(   By May she had decided to discontinue all of her treatments.  We knew in our hearts this was the beginning of the end.

Besides being heart-wrenching news for our family, it was also game-changing for our house plans.  My father-in-law would be left in a house that was really too big for two people, let alone one.  And if he were to have to sell it down the road, that would mean there would be strangers in the middle of our property.  Not good.

So we decided to buy their house in August.  In October, my mother-in-law passed away.

We started building a new home for my father-in-law.  When our lease on our rental ran out in April, he left on a motorcycle trip across the country and we moved into his house.

We love our home.  It is a log home built by Eric's father and grandfather which makes it all the more meaningful.  The flower gardens out front will be a forever reminder of the hands that so lovingly planted them.

Our house is bigger than what we had intended to build.  And we are still working on getting rid of things. But we are definitely living with much less stuff now and it is such a breath of fresh air!  I highly recommend it!

We can't wait to see what God has in store for our future!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

A bittersweet connection

We were blessed to be able to attend a seminar this past weekend for families affected by 4H Leukodystrophy. So little is known at this point and being able to connect with other families was so important. What an emotional roller coaster! How wonderful to talk to other moms who feel the same things I feel. How downright awful to hear about the future for my little girl. We don't know when but one day her myelin will decrease and she will lose the ability to function. It downright stinks. There is no treatment or cure in the near future. There are only 150 people world wide with 4H! You can imagine that we don't get much funding for research. So the best thing I can do right now (besides pray a whole lot!) is to try to spread awareness. The more people we can tell about Leukodystrophy the better. When the NIH sees that people care about it, they tend to invest more into research. So - please, like the awareness page ( Learn a little about it. Tell someone here and there about this awful thing. And above all - please pray. Pray for Emma to be one of the lucky ones. Pray for her to have a happy and long life. Pray for us to have wisdom to understand her needs. Pray for the Lord to come quickly!

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Tomatoes awaited!

We came home to a bunch of tomatoes in the garden! So we canned! 17 quarts of pasta sauce ready for winter!

Friday, September 12, 2014

Beach time!

The boys and I are enjoying some beach time this week! We are renting a house with some of our church members next week and decided spur-of-the-moment to head down a bit early and get some fishing in while the weather was so awesome! It's good to be back in the Outer Banks!

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Follow us on facebook...

Life's just plain too busy right now to take time to update my blog, unfortunately!  Facebook is a much quicker option.  So, for now, please follow us on facebook to see what we're up to!  :)

About Me

I am a homeschooling mom of 4 amazing children, each unique in their abilities, needs and personalities. I started this blog through my burning desire for my family to "live simply for God." For me this has two-fold meaning: to live simply; and to live for God.

Join me on our journey to simplifying our life. And a journey it is! :)

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