Sunday, November 1, 2009

A New Study on Cleanliness




I found the following article fascinating. ("Cleanliness IS next to godliness: new research shows clean smells unconsciously promote moral behavior")

It also induced feelings of guilt about my need to be cleaner-- but that's okay!

Maybe I should invest in more cleaners... ;-)

The smell of virtue

Sunday, October 25, 2009

CHALLENGE: Spice up Your Marriage!


I read the following quote in a book about the Depression. It was originally published in "Woman's Own" magazine on October 15, 1932:

"Never let your husband see you in a grubby apron, a bedraggled dressing gown, or a shabby working frock-- many a happy marriage has been wrecked because some foolish wife kept her prettiest garments for visitors and wore 'any old thing' about the house."

This is an intriguing statement to me. I recognize that there are appropriate clothes for different occasions. For example, we should not paint in our nicest outfits! But it also makes me think about how more spark could enter my marriage if I greeted my husband in something other than yoga pants and a t-shirt.

I know my husband has told me that he likes seeing me in make-up and jewelry. Would it really be so hard for me to dress up just for him, more than I currently do? I think I can make a greater effort!

What about you? Could dressing up more often spice up your marriage?

I'd love to hear about your experiences! :-)

Friday, September 18, 2009

All Mothers Need HOPE

Sometimes, as mothers, it seems that our job is impossible. We have so much to do, so much we want to do, and so many ways in which we feel we fall short of our ideals.

For all these reasons and more, we need HOPE. I am sharing this video with all of you, because I know how it feels to wonder if we'll ever get things "right." But I also know that if we have FAITH in Jesus Christ, and have the HOPE that comes through His love for us-- that He really can make up for all our short-comings-- then we will make it through.

Love and blessings to mothers everywhere,
Mama Rachel

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

A Succinct Article on Protecting Marriage


Dear Friends,

I found this article to be an inspiration on why protecting and supporting traditional marriage is so very important. Though it is a bit long, I know it will lift you as it did me! :-)

The Carrie Effect


Here's just a snippet from the article:

"A stunning young Christian beauty-pageant contestant was asked on national television by a gay celebrity blogger (whatever that is) what she thought about gay marriage. Watch the video clip on YouTube. You can see in her eyes that she knows: If she says what she thinks, she is not going to be Miss USA. She’s 21 years old. She’s worked very, very hard for that tiara. She comes from a modest family background. Money is tight, especially since she had to quit her job to prepare for the pageant."

"The tiara means a luxury apartment. It means the possibility of a lucrative modeling career. You can see in her eyes that she realizes all she has to do is ... fudge. 'I don’t like to watch that video,' Carrie has told me. She doesn’t like it for the very reason I found it so powerfully moving: In the space of 30 seconds, you see a young woman first be tempted and then decide that no, she cannot fudge, she has to tell the truth. 'I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there.' You see her choose between truth and the tiara. She never asked for this ordeal, but she was tested and she triumphed."

For truth and righteousness,
Mama Rachel

Monday, August 24, 2009

Experimental Vaccines to Be Given to Children

Dear Friends,

If you have children in public schools, I encourage you to check your school's policy on this issue. Wherever you may stand on the vaccination debate, it is good for each family to investigate and decide what is best for each of their children. Asking questions only reinforces our power to choose! :-)

Love,
Mama Rachel

Saturday, August 22, 2009

A Beautiful Article


(Facebookers, forgive me! I know this is an anomaly for me to be posting on my blog twice in one day. I just couldn't help but share this article with all the wives out there!)

Tonight, I read an article on CNN.com, and it's still sinking in for me.

My husband is so good to me. He tells me I'm beautiful-- something I always wanted to be, though never really have been. But I know he's telling me the truth, because I'm beautiful to HIM.

The following article talks about this kind of thing much better than I can, but I just have to say how grateful I am that my husband, really and truly, thinks I'm beautiful.

And he's wonderful enough to tell me so. :-)

(Read the article below-- I know you'll love it!)
http://www.cnn.com/2009/LIVING/homestyle/08/21/rs.words.feel.beautiful/index.html

Recipes for Abundant Zucchini!

I have a wonderful family! They have been very generous with their garden surplus, and zucchini is a big part of the abundance we've been given. So, I called my mom today, and got some yummy zucchini recipes. With the smell of baking zucchini bread wafting throughout my home, I thought I'd share a couple recipes with you! :-) (I'll start the relish later tonight...)


Zucchini Bread


1 c. brown sugar
1 c. white sugar
3 beaten eggs
1 c. vegetable oil

Combine and beat the above well. Then add:
2 c. peeled and grated uncooked zucchini
3 tsp. vanilla

Mix the following dry ingredients together, then add them to the wet ingredients:
3 c. flour
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. soda
1/4 tsp. baking powder
3 tsp. ground cinnamon

Grease and flour 2 loaf pans. Bake at 325 degrees for 50 minutes to one hour. After removing it from the oven, top with butter or a powdered sugar glaze.




De-lish Zucchini Hot Dog Relish

10 cups of peeled and grated uncooked zucchini
4 cups of ground onions (grind in a food processor or blender)
4 large green peppers, grated
1/4 CUP salt

Combine the above together in a large pot, and let it stand, covered, overnight. In the morning, drain, rinse, and set it aside. Then add:
2 1/2 cups vinegar
3 cups of sugar
1 tea. cornstarch
1 tea. turmeric powder
1 tea. ground nutmeg
2 tsp. celery seed
1/2 tsp. black pepper

Simmer for 20 minutes on low. Heat up jar lids. Then place relish in hot glass pint jars and place a hot lid on each, and screw the jar rings on. Set the jars aside on a towel to sit and seal for 24 hours. Check to make sure the lids are sealed before storing.

Makes 6 and 3/4 pint jars.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

A Recommended Website

My cousin told me about this great website for re-making and repurposing old things to make into new things. (Thanks Tylynn!) It's so fun! It's called "Make It and Love It." Check it out! :-)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Another Important Video

video

Dear fellow mothers,

This video explains more about the Demographic Crisis our world is facing.

We, as mothers, are doing a great work in raising the future generations! We must never forget how important and long-reaching our day-to-day "mundane" mothering is to the world at large. Raising children and teaching them correct principles is the most important work any mother can do.

We mothers are not just "rocking the cradle." We are literally rocking the world! So hold your heads high, ladies.

The work you are doing is of VITAL importance.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

4 Week Menu Recipes- Breakfast: PART 2


MUFFINS!

In our family, we eat muffins quite often for breakfast. They go great with any breakfast meat, like sausages, bacon, or ham, and we also enjoy eating them with smoothies. Below are four easy recipes we regularly use.


Brown Sugar Muffins

2 c. brown sugar

4 c. flour

2 tsp. Baking soda

½ tsp. Salt

2 eggs, beaten

2 tsp. Vanilla

2 c. milk

1 c. melted butter


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix and then sift together the brown sugar, flour, soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, cream the remaining ingredients together. Add the wet mixture to the sifted dry ingredients and stir only until just mixed. Bake in greased muffin tins for 15-20 minutes. (I like to use cupcake papers for easy clean-up.) Makes 2 dozen regular-sized muffins.



Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins

1 c. butter

1 c. sugar

2 eggs

1 tsp. Vanilla

½ cup buttermilk (can substitute milk mixed with 1 tsp. Vinegar)

2 c. flour

1 ½ tsp. Baking soda

½ tsp. Baking powder

½ tsp. Salt

2 bananas, mashed

1 c. oats

1 c. chocolate chips


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together the butter, sugar, eggs, vanilla, and buttermilk until well-incorporated. In a separate bowl mix the flour, baking soda and powder, and salt together. Add the dry ingredients to the wet mixture. Then fold in the bananas, oats and chocolate chips. Bake in greased muffin tins for 15-20 minutes. (I like to use cupcake papers for easy clean-up.) Makes 1 dozen regular-sized muffins.


Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Muffins

1 c. brown sugar

1 c. white sugar

4 c. flour

2 tsp. Baking soda

½ tsp. Salt

2 eggs, beaten

2 tsp. Vanilla

2 c. milk

1 c. peanut butter

1c. chocolate chips (mini work best)


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix and then sift together the sugars, flour, soda, and salt. In a separate bowl, cream the remaining ingredients together. Add the wet mixture to the sifted dry ingredients, fold in the chocolate chips, and stir only until just mixed. Bake in greased muffin tins for 15-20 minutes. (I like to use cupcake papers for easy clean-up.) Makes 2 dozen regular-sized muffins.


French Breakfast Muffins

4 c. flour

1 1/3 c. sugar

5 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. salt

½ tsp. nutmeg

2 eggs

2 c. plus 4 Tbl. milk

12 Tbl. melted and slightly cooled butter

2 tsp. vanilla


Topping:

1 c. sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

4 Tbl. melted and slightly cooled butter

Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees. Butter the bottoms only of standard size muffin tins and set aside. (I like to use cupcake papers for easier clean-up.) Measure the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and nutmeg into a large mixing bowl and combine with a whisk. In another bowl, beat the eggs until frothy. Blend in the milk, melted butter, and vanilla. Make a well in the dry ingredients and pour in the liquid mixture. Using a wooden spoon, mix the batter just until it's evenly blended, then spoon it into muffin tins. Bake on the center rack for 15 minutes. Then transfer the pan to a wire rack until muffins are cool enough to handle. Before muffins lose their warmth, prepare the topping.--> Mix the sugar and cinnamon in a small bowl. Melt butter in a separate bowl. Dip the tops of the muffins in butter and then the cinnamon-sugar mixture. Serve immediately. Makes 2 dozen regular-sized muffins.


Tuesday, June 9, 2009

The Passing of a Fascinating Woman


A great lady, Helen Andelin, author of the impactful book "Fascinating Womanhood," has passed away. Read more about her and her passing here:

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

4 Week Menu Recipes- Breakfast: PART 1

Over the next couple days, I'll be posting the recipes I use in my 4 Week Menu. (Keep in mind that these recipes feed my family of 12, so you may need to do some reducing if your family is smaller.)

Let's start with Breakfast! (My favorite meal of the day!)


Rachel's Whole Wheat Pancakes/Waffles
4 cups whole wheat flour
6 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
4 beaten eggs
4 Tbl. oil
4 Tbl honey
2 cups milk
2 cups water

Heat griddle to 375 degrees. (For waffles, heat the waffle iron.)

Stir dry ingredients together until well incorporated. In another bowl, beat the wet ingredients together; add to the flour mixture. (Will be lumpy-- don't over-mix!)

Bake immediately on the hot griddle, turning once. (Makes LOTS!)



Rachel's Breakfast Egg Bake
s
(2 varieties)

1)Bacon and Cheese Egg Bake
2 Tbl. butter
1/2 cup finely chopped onions
1/3 cup milk or cream
12 large eggs, beaten
1/4 pound shredded cheddar cheese
4 slices crumbled cooked bacon (or diced ham slices)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and heat skillet on medium heat. Melt butter in hot skillet and sautee' onions until clear. Combine remaining ingredients, add onions and mix well. Pour into a greased 9X13 inch casserole dish. Bake for 30 minutes. (Sprinkle more cheese to melt on top after baking, if desired.)

2) Sausage Baked Egg Casserole
1 pound ground pork sausage
1 small finely chopped onion
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
12 large eggs
1/2 tsp. salt
dash of pepper
1 1/4 cup milk
1 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1 1/2 cups grated cheddar cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cook sausage, onion, and garlic powder in a large skillet over medium heat until the sausage browns. Drain well.

In a large bowl, combine milk, eggs, mustard and salt for one minute. Stir in cheese and sausage. Pour into an ungreased 9X13 pan and bake, uncovered in oven for 30 to 40 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. (Can be refrigerated overnight; just add 10 minutes to the baking time.)



Breakfast Cake (Grandma Nielsen's)

3 1/3 cup flour
1/2 tea. salt
3 tea. ground cinnamon
1 tea. ground nutmeg
1/2 tea. ground cloves
5 tea. baking powder
2 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 1/3 cup milk at room temperature
2/3 cup soft butter (or shortening)

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix dry ingredients together. Add remaining ingredients. Beat for 2 minutes. Bake in greased 9X13 pan for 25 minutes. Remove from oven, and spread on frosting. (Recipe below.) Broil until frosting is brown and bubbly-- WATCH CAREFULLY! Eat cake hot. Yum!

Delectable Broiler Frosting
6 Tbl. melted butter
10 Tbl. brown sugar
6 Tbl. cream or milk
1 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)



(Part 2 Coming Soon!)

The Old-Fashioned Motherhood Manifesto

“To Preserve and Promote the Skills and Ideals
of the Traditional Homemaker-Mother”



Though I've been a mother since my first baby was born in 1993, I began my actual journey to becoming a more feminine woman about the time I had my 4th baby. I came upon a book at a thrift store (my favorite place to shop!) that made me take a good, long look at my feelings and beliefs about being a full-time mother/homemaker. At the time, my eldest child was 5, I had two boys ages 3 and 2, and just had a new baby girl.

In a word, I was overwhelmed.

I became determined to succeed in this career known as motherhood, and I voraciously read every book I could find on the subject. They included "A Joyful Mother of Children" and "I Didn't Plan to be a Witch" (both written by Linda Eyre), "Raising a Family to the Lord", "Sunshine for the LDS Mother's Soul," etc. And that brings me to the book I mentioned in the first paragraph, "Woman's Divine Destiny" by Mildred Chandler Austin. It was Mrs. Austin's master's thesis at BYU, published by Deseret Book in 1978 and is only 71 pages long, but it caused me to examine myself in a way I had never done before.

The year it was written, 1978, was one of upheaval and confusion for the traditional homemaker. That year could arguably be called the height of the "feminist movement." Women were leaving their home in droves, transporting their children to the babysitter or day care. Convenience foods like "Hamburger Helper" quickly became a staple in the new "Standard American Diet." Women who chose to stay at home and make an art of motherhood and homemaking were ridiculed or pitied as "unenlightened."

I was very young at the time, and luckily, my mother was one who decided to stay at home with my siblings and I. But, even for those who chose to be at home, the attitude toward homemaking was changed in society. Mothers who once found pride and satisfaction in preparing a lovely table and a delicious meal for their husband and children, now created their own brand of "fulfillment" in doing crafts, volunteering, hobbies, and other extraneous activities. They may have physically been at home, but sometimes their hearts were not in the duties of cooking, cleaning, and mothering. The derogatory phrase used for the job of stay-at-home mothers-- "dirty diapers and dishes"-- permeated homes everywhere.

These attitudes and catch-phrases of motherhood continued to grow and became ingrained in the girls and women of the next generation. As a young mother, I found myself

Friday, May 22, 2009

One Audacious Opinion on "Dress"-ing Up


I've been thinking about this once again (she said, as she sits writing in her t-shirt and jeans), and pondering about how much better I feel about myself when I "dress up." When I say "dress up," I'm not talking about Sunday-ready, night-on-the-town "dressed up", but rather how different I feel about myself and my family when I try to look nice at home.

Even though I'm dressed down today, I usually prefer skirts to pants. I mean, let's face it, those of us with extra padding 'round the rear look better when we have a skirt draping over our backsides rather than stuffing ourselves into pants. And since I live in a place that can get quite hot, skirts or dresses help in the air-conditioning department, too. One other benefit I've noticed is that I behave differently when I wear a skirt and a nice blouse. Frankly, I feel more like a mother, wife, and woman.

Now, I recognize that many-- if not most-- women prefer a snug pair of jeans to a skirt or dress, but consider for one moment the women of ages past. What do you think about the dressed-up women in the old paintings and photos you see? Do you ever wonder if the behavior of women in today's modern world would change if women dressed up and covered up?

For a few years, as a teen and then after our wedding, my husband participated in a medieval re-creation society. And something he said about his experiences there has stuck with me over the years. He told me about how most of the women that participated in the society were pretty overweight, but that he hadn't noticed that fact until he attended some events where the female participants did not dress in the usual medieval garb, but wore pants instead. In fact, he was shocked at how differently the women acted, and how differently the men treated them. In other words, chivalry happened more readily and easily when women dressed more femininely.

In recent years, I've also come upon the thought from various sources that skirts or dresses actually help women look more modest. Where do men look when a woman saunters around in tight pants? Why have women in the Western world-- for nearly a millenia!-- worn skirts or dresses? Modesty. Femininity. Not to mention that we women often feel more lovely when we dress the part of a "lady." I know I feel more attractive and beautiful when I'm dressed like a girl! What little girl hasn't dreamt of that elegant white dress in her hoped-for future? Why do formal dances still happen, and why do MOST of the girls that attend them come in princess-like ballgowns? Because we're FEMALE, that's why! :-D

I know I have made some audacious statements here, and am likely to continue to do so in the future, but consider for ONE MOMENT how the world could change if we just "dressed-up" a little bit more? I'd like to challenge my readers to examine your closets, and consider throwing out some grubbies and/or yoga pants, and then adding a skirt or two to your wardrobe. I really don't think you'll regret it.

Excuse me while I change out of my work clothes, and make myself look more like a lady for my hubby tonight! ;-)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Parental Rights in Jeopardy



This is an issue we here at Old-Fashioned Motherhood will keep on our radar. Parents have a God-given duty to raise their children as He would have them raised-- not as the government might dictate!

Contact your congressmen to co-sponsor the Parental Rights Amendment today! See www.ParentalRights.org for more information. You can also sign the petition for Parental Rights there, as well.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

4 Week Menu


As mothers, sometimes it takes extra time to make life easier, but it is so worth it! Yesterday I took about an hour and made myself a new 4 Week Menu, as I prepare to go shopping for the month. (Once a month-- this should be exciting!)

Let me share my thought process behind all of this. I have ten children, and sometimes getting them all fed is a big job! My four oldest children now do most of the cooking, and so I have simplified most of our meals to facilitate and teach them, while giving them the best chance to be successful in cooking. (And making the meals more edible for us all! LOL!)

Each week, I have Breakfast and Lunch already decided, with room for variation and personal tastes. It just makes it easy when kids ask what they should fix: "Mom? What should I make for breakfast?"

(Insert whine HERE.)

My response usually goes something like this: "Well, it's Tuesday, so you can make pancakes or waffles. Would you like help making a special syrup (like strawberry or peach)?"

Sometimes my comments are followed with wailing and gnashing of teeth, and sometimes with skipping to the kitchen, but either way, breakfast eventually gets made.

It's all about choice and simplicity, people!

Just for fun, I thought I'd share our family's newest 4 Week Menu, in the hopes that it will inspire and/or motivate you in your meal planning. (I use a spreadsheet to make life easier.)

Below is my 4 Week Menu (as a Google Document) and the accompanying shopping list. (I won't give amounts, because I'm too concerned about putting my sweet readers into anaphylactic shock. Sam's Club loves us-- need I say more?!)

http://spreadsheets.google.com/ccc?key=rnEGLYKqbFyTv1Q7iImNeJg

Staples to Replenish, as Needed
:
  • wheat*
  • oil
  • salt
  • yeast
  • sugar
  • oats
  • baking powder
  • baking soda
  • popcorn
  • Mapeleine
  • brown sugar
  • rice
  • chicken boullion
  • beef boullion
  • honey
  • grits
  • raisins
  • chocolate chips
Canned Goods:
  • peaches
  • pears
  • fruit cocktail
  • applesauce
  • refried beans
  • tomato sauce
  • pineapple chunks
  • tuna
  • cream of chicken soup
  • olives
  • black beans
In the Dairy Section:
  • cheddar cheese
  • mozzarella cheese
  • butter
  • eggs
  • cottage cheese
  • sour cream
  • milk
Meats:
  • pepperoni
  • chicken
  • ham
  • hot dogs
  • beef roast
  • hamburger
  • bacon
  • ground sausage
Frozen Foods:
  • frozen fruit
  • corn
  • broccoli
  • hashbrowns
  • mixed veggies
Breads and Pasta:
  • flour tortillas
  • corn tortillas
  • spaghetti noodles
  • macaroni noodles
  • Ramen noodles
  • tortilla chips
Condiments:
  • peanut butter
  • jam
  • ketchup
  • mustard
  • mayonnaise
  • pickles
  • soy sauce
Fresh Produce:
  • tomatoes
  • carrots
  • lettuce
  • green onions
  • bananas
  • potatoes
  • fruit in season
  • other veggies in season
*(I'm planning on making our own bread, rather than buying it. My eldest daughter is game, and my husband is willing to teach her, so why not?)


Feel free to copy, change, adjust, or reject. *grin* I'll post some of my recipes soon.

Please post any questions or recipe requests in the comments section. I look forward to hearing from you! :-)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Motherly Tips Courtesy of Ma Ingalls



The past couple weeks, my husband and I have been reading aloud to our children from the book "On the Banks of Plum Creek" by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The third book in the Little House series contains just some of the great principles to be learned in the series, but it has reminded my husband and I of some important lessons:

1) Live Simply. Ma never made 3 course meals, unless it was a holiday or celebration. And even then, the fare wasn't fancy. But she made sure her husband the children were fed three meals a day, right when they needed it. (How is it she always knew when Pa would walk through the door?) She also had very few dishes, gadgets, pots and pans, or decor. Yet she got along just fine with her crisp white curtains and cast iron skillets. With no extra items or paper clutter, it was easy to keep her house clean.


2) Wives Should Stand Shoulder-to-Shoulder with Their Husbands. Whether it was prairie fire, chores, or an infestation of grasshoppers, Ma always showed her readiness for the challenge at hand. Though she was always feminine and womanly, she also knew how to work, sweat and strain. She had learned that a woman does not need to cower in a corner and faint away when troubles come, but that her place was by her husband's side, facing whatever came their way.

3) Mothers Teach Daughters to Keep House. From the time they were small, Mary and Laura, and then Carrie and Grace, were all taught how to keep a neat and tidy home. After every meal, the girls cleared the dishes from the table, washed and dried them, and swept the floor. (Even when the floor was a dirt floor!) There was no whining or complaining. Rather, they found joy and pleasure in their work!


4) Children Should Be Obedient. Because of Ma's and Pa's parenting, the Ingalls girls chose to be obedient, even if their parents weren't around. Laura, the "wild" one, was also taught some hard lessons in obedience by the forces of Nature, but she did always compared what she wanted to do with whether Ma and Pa would say it was good or bad. Sometimes, in those harsh pioneer days, if a child didn't obey, they or someone else could end up very injured or even dead. The act of obedience could mean the difference between life or death!

5) Thriftiness in a Homemaker is Important. Ma knew how to remake new dresses from old clothes or fabrics. She also mended and patched every item of clothing until it was absolutely unwearable. She even patched shoes and boots, until new ones could be afforded. She lived the phrase "Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without."

6) Don't Go into Town Often. Unlike most homemakers in this day and age, who go to the store every day, and sometimes more than once a day, Ma rarely traveled off to town to provide for her family's need. She grew a garden, and then carefully preserved and stored food for the family to last the whole winter. She knew what they had, and kept an accurate inventory. If she was not careful with their food supplies, her family could starve. (And not just think they're starving because there's no more Fruit Loops in the cupboards. ;-D)

Our foremothers had loads of knowledge that we have lost in the hustle and bustle of modern life. By studying homemaking history and the lives and skills of women of the past, I believe that we can better serve our families, homes, and communities. I'm going to do my best to simplify my life, and I invite you to do the same. Think of how we could change our families and the world, just by following some of these simple principles that Ma Ingalls exhibited!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Family Preparedness

Lately I have been trying to do better about being prepared and getting my family ready for-- well, anything! I have recently come across some really great blogs that have been helping me in my preparedness pursuits, and I'd like to share them with my readers.

So, let's get more prepared, shall we?



1) Food Storage Made Easy (http://foodstoragemadeeasy.net/)

Jodi and Julie have created a very helpful, detailed website that makes preparedness seem much less overwhelming. They have a free e-mail service that delivers preparedness baby steps directly to your inbox every two weeks. Did I mention that it's FREE? They also have free checklists, "how to" videos, product recommendations, recipes, links, and great online tools. They also have a new e-book that contains ALL of their baby steps in one place, downloadable immediately for a reasonable price.

There is a LOT of information on their site, so you may want to give yourself some time to explore all that they have to offer. I'm using their baby steps program, and loving it!


Safely Gathered In
2) Safely Gathered In (http://www.safelygatheredin.blogspot.com/)

Safely Gathered In is an informative blog created to help you gather, organize, and rotate your food storage so you can have confidence knowing that you are prepared for whatever comes your way. They have free printable sheets, "how to" guides, recipes, and step-by-step instructions for gathering and storing food storage and emergency supplies. A great resource!




3) Fun with Food Storage (http://funwithfoodstorage.net/)

This site is a network of food storage sites that include the Food Storage Made Easy website listed above. Here's how they describe themselves: "We are a group of young moms on a mission to change the way you look at food storage. We make it FUN and DO-ABLE."

Their site will be re-launched soon, and they will soon be having a great giveaway for a Wondermill Wheat Grinder. See their site for more details!

Friday, March 20, 2009

WHY Do People Hate Children?

This might sound like a loaded question, but I am absolutely in earnest. WHY do people-- society in general-- hate children? Why is pregnancy furiously avoided, even among the happily married and the highly religious? Why are large families the subject of jokes? Why do so many mothers sigh with relief and delight when they send their children off to school? Why do parents count down the days until summer vacation ends?

Do we have the courage to ask ourselves WHY???

Here's some possible answers I've come up with:

1) The Media-- Every day we are sold the idea that children are messy, annoying, and take away the freedom of adults. In a society as media-soaked as ours, is it any wonder that so many have bought into these ideas?

2) The Public School System-- Very few parents spend any real amount of time with their children. They spend five short years raising a baby/toddler/preschooler, and then they send the child off into the world to be raised and taught by strangers. No wonder they don't know "what to do with" Junior when he's home every day for a few months in the summer. Parents and children simply don't know each other!

3) The Decision of Roe vs. Wade-- When babies are often considered inconveniences to be "removed," why would society value the ones who survive to become children? Kids are just lucky to be alive, right?

4) The Peter Pan Syndrome-- So many "adults" today are still behaving like children, themselves. They don't want to be "tied down" with responsibilities. They want to be "free" to pursue the hobbies, entertainment, activities, vacations, possessions and pleasures they desire. And what is human life when compared to these things?


I realize that this article has the potential to rankle a few people, but let's all just pause for a moment, and really think about the messages we are sending to the next generation.

Do they feel wanted, loved, and appreciated? Are they likely to want children of their own someday?

Will future generations even EXIST?

Just think about it.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Do it Anyway...



The world today seems to be getting more and more complicated. Morals are being muddied, integrity is extinct, sincerity is shunned. It's almost enough to make a mother throw her hands up in despair!

BUT...

We CAN make a difference, we can let our voices be heard. Even if the world mocks us-- or worse, ignores our pleas for a return to goodness-- we should still follow our inner-light and be an example for truth and right.

I love this quote*:



People are often unreasonable, illogical, and self-centered;

Forgive them anyway.


If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish ulterior motives;

Be kind anyway.


If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;

Succeed anyway.


If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;

Be honest and frank anyway.


What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;

Build anyway.

If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;

Be happy anyway.


The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;

Do good anyway.


Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;

Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.


You see, in the final analysis, It is between you and God;

It was never between you and them anyway.


*I originally attributed this quote to Mother Teresa, but have since found out that it has been incorrectly been associated with her. I am unsure of who the original author is. I apologize for the mistake!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Right to Live...

I just watched a video that is FANTASTIC, especially in light of the new president's abominable actions on his first day in office... (click on the headline below for more information.)


And the promised video:

Thursday, January 15, 2009

The Incredible Shrinking Family

I just received a link to a new movie that has the potential to strongly impact families everywhere. The movie is called "Demographic Winter" and it you can learn more about it here:

http://www.cfourstrategies.com/demowinteruf.html

Fertility rates are going down in every nation around the world. What will the future hold for our children and grandchildren? When we gloss over this issue, are we saying that we don't care about the future world we leave them?I hope not. What is happening to families...?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Freedom of Choice???

Baby #10, peacefully unaware of the world's turmoil

Dear Friends,

Today I received the following e-mail from one of my favorite organizations, United Families International:

Freedom of Speech... Freedom of Religion... Freedom of Abortion???

Looks like the U.S. abortion proponents are at it again. This time they have created what appears to be a new, updated version of the U.S. Bill of Rights. The Bill of Rights was carefully enacted over time and with the ratification of a super-majority of all the states. It recognizes in a legitimate way the basic rights of individual citizens and gives a guarantee that the federal government will not overstep its authority over individual citizens; giving credibility to government and protection to its citizens.However, when congressional action sets a new precedence for the creation of a fundamental right, it is time to take note...and take action.
The United States of America defined the full rights of its citizens through the state ratification process in 1791. These fundamental rights became known as the first 10 amendments to the Bill of Rights. They include: the right of religion and speech, the right to keep and bear arms, the right of private property, fair treatment of those accused of crimes, protection from unreasonable search and seizure, freedom from self-incrimination, a speedy and impartial jury trial, and representation by counsel. The federal government is also prohibited from depriving any person of life, liberty or property without due process of law. Additional rights are granted to those accused of crimes as well. Other rights followed, although the first 10 are recognized as the fundamental rights of citizens.The Freedom of Choice Act introduced in April of 2007 creates a new fundamental right. If passed into law, this legislation will protect the right to abortion just as if ratified as an amendment to the Bill of Rights.Practically speaking, this legislation if passed will pre-empt all state and federal law, and case law including the recent Gonzales vs. Carhart ruling that upholds the federal partial birth abortion ban. It will also supersede any and all law defining the viability of the "fetus".
Parental notification laws will be void and taxpayers will be expected to pay for all government funded abortions, including late-term abortions.In essence, any female of any age will be guaranteed an abortion on demand through and up to the birth of the baby. FOCA also creates a new "right" to sue, ensuring abortion services from every hospital and health care provider no matter their religious views or right of conscience. No other piece of legislation has the potential to force widespread abortion access to so many women than FOCA. The harmful negative effects of a coercive federal government will have the founding fathers rolling in their graves.
Email your Congressmen and US Senators today. Tell them that FOCA is anti-life, anti-family and anti-American.
You can also join the fight against FOCA by signing up here: www.fightfoca.com or www.badchange.com

I know that we, the people, can perform miracles when we band together and vote for good, moral laws and leaders. We must stand up and protect the rights of religious people, their religions, and parents of young impressionable girls-- not to mention the millions of vulnerable, unborn children!Please contact your representatives NOW!!! We the people will only have the power to be heard when we stand up and say something!
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