While trying out a funnel cake recipe (see below) in my cast iron this evening, I was thinking to myself (as I often do) about the whys and hows of being a unique mama to my unique children. Every human being is just a bit different from all the others, and no matter how much we tend to group and re-group ourselves for the purposes of belonging or collecting data, we will always be amazingly unique individuals with our own special journeys. The recipe that follows is something I created while standing at the stove tonight. While it may not apply to all, I feel it follows certain patterns that if we pay attention, are fairly common amongst families.

Recipe for encouraging rebellion in your children’s hearts:
1 part rules (hold the reason)
2 parts hypocrisy
1/2 a slice of disrespecting their personal space
1 part passive disapproval of their changing personality
Sprinkle on responsibilities, making sure to withhold the appropriate privileges.
Pour quickly into a hot (hormonal) pan, and hold over the fire until it breaks or causes damage to your home.

Have you seen this in your life? Perhaps there are other “recipes” you are familiar with, maybe even ones that produce something more positive. I’d be ever so grateful if you would share them with me in the comments below. ¬†Last, but not least, here is the funnel cake recipe I pulled from the Food Network website, which lists Robert Irvine as its author.

Funnel Cake with Powdered Sugar
Ingredients: 1 liter canola oil, 3 cups all-purpose flour, 1/4 cup sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder, 1/2 teaspoon salt, 3 eggs, 2 cups milk, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, for dusting
Directions: Heat oil in deep-fryer to 350 degrees F (I used a deep cast iron pan). Mix flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Whisk in eggs and milk. Pour 1/2 cup batter through funnel into hot oil, moving in a circular motion as you do so, to make each spiral-shaped funnel cake. Fry each spiral of batter until golden brown, about 2 or 3 minutes. Remove with tongs and lay on paper toweling to absorb oil (I spread paper napkins under a cooling rack). Transfer to a plate and sprinkle with powdered sugar through a sieve onto top of hot dough. Serve immediately. Here is a collage of one of mine as it cooked.



Exploring Creation through Zoology

Genesis 1:20 Then God said, ‚ÄúLet the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures, and let birds fly above the earth across the face of the firmament of the heavens.‚ÄĚ 21 So God created great sea creatures and every living thing that moves, with which the waters abounded, according to their kind, and every winged bird according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. 22 And God blessed them, saying, ‚ÄúBe fruitful and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let birds multiply on the earth.‚ÄĚ 23 So the evening and the morning were the fifth day.


Last school year, I made a last-minute curriculum change decision. Instead of teaching through Apologia’s Exploring Creation through Astronomy, I thought we would try something new, something that looked “kid-friendly”. Meh. I chose a Christian Kids Explore text (used) that covered Earth and Space. I won’t go into details lamenting the entire textbook and lackluster experience. Many people seem to enjoy the series, and that’s great for them. I think we should all find what works for our families and stand by those decisions. I ended up piecing together short units based on the subjects in the text and hardly using the text at all. My advice? Get your hands on things before implementing them. ¬†We did some neat projects throughout the year, as you can see…

Measuring melting rates and movements of pure ice "glaciers" versus "glaciers" full of sediment.

Measuring melting rates and movements of pure ice “glaciers” versus “glaciers” full of sediment.


Showing the earth's layers.

Showing the earth’s layers.



On the upside, I have gone back to Apologia. I wanted to try something new, see if there was something…better? Anyway, the Young Explorer series offers everything we need in a rich science study, and God is glorified in the process. To ice that cake, Pinterest has become a homeschooler’s goldmine, offering up everything from applicable Netflix suggestions to corresponding art projects and where materials can be had for less money. ¬†The kidlets have created their binders already, and I have the first lesson printed out, with each lessons taking two weeks to complete, topped off with an experiment. ¬†Once I purchase my lesson planner, I’ll scribble in the lesson plans and get to focus on the best part of all – gathering experiment supplies and LEARNING TOGETHER!

Today’s Moments of Happy in List Form.

Morning nap was refreshing, to my surprise. ¬†Didn’t feel even the slightest twinge of guilt. ¬†Wow.

Was inspired by Dave Ramsey and provoked to thought by Matt Walsh.

Completed all errands, without rushing, with time left to spare.

Found partially used gift cards buried in wallet.  Used gift cards to buy treats and hand cream.

Shared chocolate with an incredibly¬†darling little girl, and was repaid a hundredfold by her chocolate grin and her signing, “thank you”.

Son grilled for the first time.  Did VERY well.

Sun shined brightly РALL DAY LONG.  Stood on the porch with my face toward the setting sun, closed my eyes, stretched out my arms, and thanked the Lord for sunshine with my entire being.

Managed to be kind whilst firm in all necessary corrections.  For those who know the kind of brat I can be, this was a huge win, especially as a mom to three fantastic young people who deserve only the best of me.

Clipped pine and spruce branches to simmer on stove for their therapeutic properties.

Took time to blog.

Budgeted for next month, and will meet all bills despite huge change of salary.

God is good, ALL THE TIME, and all the time, GOD IS GOOD!



Articles and Opinions

I’m going to do something a little differently here today, and share some links to things I’ve read recently. ¬†I am not claiming authorship of anything I refer to below, other than whatever thoughts I share as introductions. ¬†If you would be so kind as to share, in as few or as many words as you’d like, the articles that you enjoyed the most or the least, I would ABSOLUTELY appreciate it. ¬†You might even feel like leaving an explanation, but I won’t hound you for one. ¬†Without further ado, for your reading pleasure…

  • If you are attempting to garden (not just flowers) and have toyed with the idea of storing away extra for the winter months, the following succinct blog post may be of use to you. ¬†Sometimes it is nice to have someone else doing to calculations when it comes to deciding how much to plant for storage. ūüôā ¬†New Life On A Homestead
  • No matter where you are on the spectrum regarding the use of electronics and youth, the following short article includes references to an author’s work, recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics, and educated opinions on the subject. ¬†Digital Dementia?
  • The following is my favorite blog in the whole wide world, even if I do’t always agree with the author’s choice of words. ¬†All of the writing is engaging and controversial, and I LOVE IT! ¬†The Matt Walsh Blog


That old adage about more being caught than taught

There’s a poem written by Dorothy Law Nolte, Ph.D., titled “Children Learn What They Live”. ¬†You can find the book with the original work here, and a slightly different version of the poem follows below, shown on a lovely afghan:


A disclaimer belongs here – this poem is often viewed as being somewhat humanistic. ¬†I cannot wholly disagree with any part of it, though. ¬†Too often our pride causes us to lash out in anger at the deficiencies we think we see in our children. ¬†What will others think, right? ¬†What will others say about us when we aren’t around? ¬†Our insecurities about what we see wrong in ourselves causes us to overreact when trying to shape our children into what we wish we could be. ¬†Our criticism of any child – ours or others’ – could come from any number of things, few (if any) of them come from a loving place in our hearts.

The entire poem above could be summed up in the “Golden Rule”, which reminds us to treat others as we wish to be treated. ¬†Consider for a moment if someone you looked up to spoke to you or called you the same names you called them. ¬†Feeling good, yet? ¬†Didn’t think so. ¬†I’ve found it to be true that we often hurt worst, the ones we love the most.

Scripture points out exactly what Love is, and I cannot imagine that we should treat anyone – especially children with their impressionable minds and vulnerable hearts – any other way. ¬†1 Corinthians 13:4-8 reads, “4 Love¬†suffers long¬†and¬†is¬†kind; love¬†does not envy; love¬†does not parade itself, is¬†not puffed up;¬†5 does not behave rudely,¬†does not seek its own,¬†is not provoked,¬†thinks no evil;¬†6 does not rejoice in iniquity, but¬†rejoices in¬†the truth; 7 bears all things,¬†believes all things,¬†hopes all things,¬†endures all things. ¬†8 Love¬†never fails.”

What sort of person are you deep down inside? ¬†What sort of adults are you hoping your children grow to be? ¬†We can’t erase our mistakes, but we can have hope that our Creator will protect the hearts of these little ones from the messed-up adults He has tasked with raising them. ¬†And while we cannot erase mistakes, we can start fresh each day. ¬†We can remind all children how cherished and important they are. ¬†We can choose to be determined each day to cause them to be so filled with love and joy that it spills out of their lives and into a hurting world.