Put Your Dreams and Goals Before You

Photo by Brooke Lark

Photo by Brooke Lark

Good Monday morning to you this first day of 2018!

Well, here we are at the beginning of a new year.  It always feels like the slate is clean and it’s time to plan dreams and goals for this year.  So what are your dreams and goals for 2018?  Are you starting something new? Do you have big plans?  I do.

Let me mention just a few of my dreams and goals for 2018.

1.      Advance my writing – specifically growing my blog audience

2.      Complete 2 books and publish them

3.      Minimalize my house for next year’s move

4.      Finish reading the Bible all the way through

Notice, I did not say “resolution”, I said dreams and goals.  A few years ago I started making vision boards.  The first year I did it I was blown away be all the things that actually happened.  NO, I don’t think the stars aligned to make my dreams come true that year.  What I noticed is that with the vision board front and center, I thought about my goals daily and I did something to work for them. 

Habakkuk 2:2 says,  And the Lord answered me:

“Write the vision;

make it plain on tablets,

so he may run who reads it.”

Setting my 2018 dreams and goals in front of me help me see the written vision made plain so I might run to it. That’s what a vision board does for me.  I like to use this rather than resolutions in a notebook. 

Everyone knows that most resolutions end before the month of January does.  So why waste your time making resolutions.  Why not set your dreams and goals before you in a way that you can plainly see them and then run toward your dreams and goals.

If you want to accomplish your goals, 

1. put them in front of you so you can see them every day

2. make them measurable

3. and make them realistic but with just a little stretch.

May your 2018 dreams and goals come true!  I know they can with some prayer and hard work.

Happy New Year!

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

FallintoJesus.JPG

Happy Thanksgiving!

I hope you and yours have a very special day planned tomorrow!  If not, plan it now.  No, you don’t have to go somewhere or even have the traditional Thanksgiving meal. What I’m talking about is being thankful!

Every year, my family will gather around a Thanksgiving meal and read aloud things that we are thankful for.  We try to do at least 10 each.  We stop at 10 each only so we can get to other fun things together.

I usually print out little slips that read like this:

I am thankful for _________________________________________________________.

These all go in a jar or bowl and we pass them around so each one of us can pull out one at a time to read aloud. We don’t sign the slips because part of our fun is guessing who wrote which one.  Of course some are easier to figure out than others.  For example, we know “I am thankful for deer season” comes from Dad!

You know we cover all the obvious things like family and friends and certain material things.  We all feel compelled to list “salvation” as our top item that we are thankful.  (That is definitely something for which I am thankful!) But usually there is something each year that just floors us. Invariably, someone will write a deep note about one thing they are thankful that takes us all by surprise.  I just love those moments!

So if you are looking for a tradition to start for Thanksgiving, give the “I’m thankful for” idea a try.  You just might be surprise at what you hear!

“We give thanks to God always for all of you, making mention of you in our prayers” I Thessalonians 1:2

Handmade Gifts for Christmas

cloth napkins.JPG

So I have these ideas to sew for Christmas this year.  The above photo is one such idea.

My husband and I just love using cloth napkins with our meals at home. Sometimes guests think we’re being a little too “fancy” when I bring out the cloth napkins.  But here’s our rationale:

                Me:  I think cloth napkins add just a touch of elegance.  And I just like them! 

                My husband: He says they just clean better than paper towels.

Regardless our reasons, we both enjoy using cloth napkins at home.  So, I thought I would start sewing some for gifts.  The green ones were my first set and I love them so much (and my dining room is green) I think I may keep them for myself!

This sounds like Christmas shopping doesn’t it?  It always amazes me that when I’m on a mission to shop for others, I find all kinds of things I need, ugh want.

Well, I digress!  I bought about 4 sets of fat quarters recently with the idea of making cloth napkins for gifts this year.  (I can’t mention for whom just in case they read my blog!) This made sewing these up a snap AND it offers 5 in the set rather than the typical 4.  I had considered giving the sets as only 4 and then having a set with one of all 4 colors.  But, again, I like them so well that I just may keep this set of 5 for myself.

Here’s how I made them:

1.       First, wash the fabric before sewing.

2.       Iron each fat quarter out smooth.

3.       Turn down one of the shorter ends about 1 inch and finger press.

4.       Then iron the 1-inch fold to form a definite press.

5.       Fold the raw edge into the pressed line and iron on the fold.  This creates a smooth seam with the raw edges safely tucked inside that seam.

6.       Pin along the seam.

7.       Repeat on the opposite side. (The other shorter end.)

8.       Then do the same on both of the longer sides.

9.       Go to the machine and straight stitch all four sides removing your pins as you go.

10.   Don’t forget to backstitch in the corners.

Now you, too, can enjoy some cloth napkins at your table and/or have some handmade gifts ready for that next special occasion!

Happy sewing!

Right All Along

MomRight

The older I get, the more I agree with this clip I saw on Facebook.  For the record, "OMG" in my book means "Oh My Goodness".  Just needed to clear that up.

Isn't it ironic how, even though our parents lived in a different era, they were right about most everything? Our pastor recently said that his mother told him growing up that people don't change.  So true.  Even Solomon, the wisest man to ever live, said there is nothing new under the sun.

When my Mom would say, "Birds of a feather flock together." She was right.  When she would say, "No, not everyone is doing it - because you're not."  She was right. God always has a remnant and I want to be counted in that, don't you?  When she said someone was being mean because they were jealous, she was right.  We know the list could go on from here but I'll not bore you with more. We get the point.

I can't count the times I wish I could tell my parents, "Oh My Goodness, you were right!" I can recall many times that my parents would let me make my own mistakes.  Sometimes I would come to them and say, "Why didn't you tell me?"  One time in particular my Mom just shook her head and said, "You wouldn't have listened..."  I'm the last of seven children.  I got the impression she knew from experience that I probably wouldn't have listened.

My Dad's famous answer to "Why didn't you tell me?" was "There's no experience like bought experience."  Oh, if I had a dime for all the 'bought' lessons...

While I would have to say that my parents were right about most everything, I must tell you that Jesus IS right about EVERYTHING.  So when He says not to do something, it's for our good that we DON'T do it.  When He says to DO something, it's for our good that we DO it.

For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome. I John 5:3

Do you ever feel like His commandments are burdensome?  I have.  But when I understand that His commands are for my good and His glory, the burden is lifted. When I am obedient to His will, His commands are not heavy.  When I trust that Jesus is ALWAYS RIGHT and I adjust to His Will, I don't have to ask, "Why didn't You tell me?" After all, He did tell us...