Friday, June 28, 2013

From my Front Porch ~ June 28, 2013

from my front porch

Welcome back to my weekly series, From my Front Porch, where I share updates from my home and family. My hope is that you'll fix yourself a cup of coffee or tea, or perhaps even a glass of lemonade, and imagine us sitting together on my front porch, chatting about life and catching up on the latest news!  I hope you'll join me each Friday on My Front Porch!  

Around the House

We've been slowly making our way through my new house.  I hope you're enjoying the tour!  We stopped in the master bedroom last week, and this week I thought I'd invite you into my master bathroom and closet.  You should feel privileged, because I don't take just anyone back there!  ;)

This is my bathroom.  It is the same pale green as my bedroom, and feels so light and airy!  I really love the color and the overall feel!  Don't you??  :)

The view to the left:

The shower . . . 

The tub . . . 

Did you notice my seashell collection on the window sill?  I love finding treasures at the beach!  :)

Now, let's walk through the door at the back of the bathroom . . . 

And this is what you see . . . my amazing closet!  Now, I must tell you that the previous owner had more shoes than I've ever seen at one time in my entire life!!  She had shoes shoved into every shelf of this shoe shelf . . . 

And boots all across this top shelf . . . 

She even had more shoes stored on this shelf!  Well, since I'm not a shoe-aholic, I've put this set of shelves to better use -- I turned it into a bookshelf!  :)  Because I only have two feet, and can only wear so many shoes, but I can never have too many books!!  Right??  ;)

And this is my hubby's side of the closet:

Obviously, we have plenty of closet space!  Truly, we don't need all of that room for ourselves, but we "rent" space to the guys and gals up above whose closets are overflowing with multiple kids per room!  ;)   We also store the containers of clothes for each child to grow into in here . . . so all that space is being put to good use!  :)   

Family News

We have really enjoyed having my niece, Amber, here this week!  :)  

Apparently, she gives great massages!  ;)

It has been fun having her around again!  :)

Unbelievably, Joe and Abby's Big Day is almost here, so we've shifted our focus to getting ready for the wedding!!  My To-do list has been long, but not necessarily tedious!  ;)  

We've worked on our suntans (in between thunderstorms!) . . . 

Gotten haircuts . . . 

Enjoyed Pedicures . . . 

Shopped for special clothes with friends . . . 

And baked dozens and dozens of cookies!!  Chris has become the family baker, because he can produce some fantastic cookies!  So, he graciously volunteered to make all the cookies for the rehearsal dinner!  He made his famous chocolate chocolate chip cookies, my sister's delicious peanut butter chocolate chip cookies, and the traditional classic chocolate chip cookie!  YUM!  :)

Since I'm pretty sure you're going to want the recipe for Chris's Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies, here it is!  :)

4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cocoa powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 cups softened butter
1 1/2 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
4 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
2 cups white chocolate chips
2 cups milk chocolate chips

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).  Whisk together the flour, cocoa powder and baking soda.  

2.  Beat the butter, white sugar, and brown sugar with an electric mixer until smooth and creamy.  Beat in each egg one at a time until completely incorporated.  Add vanilla with last egg.  

3.  Mix in flour mixture just until incorporated, scraping the bowl to make sure the bottom is mixed well. Fold in chocolate chips, mixing just enough to evenly combine. 

4.  Drop by heaping teaspoonfuls onto ungreased baking sheet.  (Or use medium cookie scoop for best results.)  Bake in preheated oven for 9 to 12 minutes. (Chris bakes his for 11 to 12 minutes.)  Let cool one minute before removing to wire cooling rack.

5.  Enjoy!!  :)

Thanks for stopping by my front porch for a visit!  If you have time, please drop by and visit with my dear friend, Lori.  She blogs from the front porch of her cozy little log cabin nestled in the woods of the South Carolina mountains.  You will enjoy her warm and witty writing style!  Tell her that Elizabeth sent you!  :)

Please join me again next Friday on my front porch!!

This post is linked up with:

Monday, June 24, 2013

Marriage Monday: Adapting to Your Husband {Link up}

Marriage Mondays

Welcome back to Marriage Monday! I hope you were able to read my post from last week, where I discussed the importance of focusing on pleasing our husbands. I appreciated many of you joining in and sharing something specific that you did to please your husband, from making sure he had clean underwear to redecorating the master bedroom!  :)  Let's keep it going! I'd love to have you join the discussion over on my Facebook page.  If you missed my post from last week, you might want to click on the link above and give it a quick read before moving on to today's post.

Today I want to talk about adapting to our husbands.

With one son married just over a year, and another son on the brink of matrimony, I've been thinking about all the adjustments that young couples face after they say, "I do."

Even when you've been in a relationship for four years (as Joe and Abby have), you don't really know each other until you're married.  You really have to live with someone to discover his or her little habits and quirks!  Even after being married to someone for many years, you can still be surprised by some new facet of his personality that you never knew before!!

So, what's the secret of learning to live together in harmony and adjusting to married life?  Obviously, both the bride and the groom need to be flexible, willing to compromise, adaptable, eager to prefer one another in love, and able to discuss differences in a mature manner.  Good old-fashioned give and take is essential to any successful relationship.

What should a couple do when they encounter an area where they disagree?  What if they both feel strongly that their way is right or best??

Naturally, we all think that everything we believe is right (or we would believe differently) and that our way of doing things is superior (or we would do them a different way)!  So, it can be quite challenging to come face to face with someone who insists on doing things differently!  

When it is not a matter of morality and biblical truth, being open-minded is a good thing!  Each should consider the other's viewpoint and preference and decide if this is a good time to defer to the other. Some areas of conflict are really not that important and can even be amusing!

I remember the first time my husband and I went grocery shopping together. Plastic wrap was on the list.  I reached for the Glad Wrap and he reached for the Saran Wrap!  This was repeated with many items on our first joint shopping list!  :) We all tend to want to stock our pantry with the brands our parents did!  How did we resolve these differences?  I don't really remember how we decided on who "won" on each item, but I know we compromised!  We ended up using Glad Wrap (what my Mom used!) and Tide Laundry Detergent (what his Mom used) and when it came to toothpaste, we decided to have both his and hers tubes -- he bought his own tube of Colgate and I bought my own tube of Crest!!  :)  I think this illustrates the way we made the transition -- in some areas we did things his way, in some areas we did things my way, and in some areas we came up with a creative alternative!  ;)

We also encountered some differences in perspective that weren't so easy to work through. Deciding what type of church to attend was pretty monumental, as we grew up in two very different denominations.  Probably the most traumatic issue we had to work through in our early years was the difficult decision as to whether I would be a working mom or a stay-at-home mom.  It took many tearful discussions, much prayer, and painful budget sessions before we reached a shared conviction that I should be at home, mothering our children and creating a peaceful home environment for our family.  The next big decision debate we faced was how our children would be educated!  You can read about these conflicts and their resolutions herehere and here.

So, what happens when a couple reaches an impasse?  Who should yield?  Some things have to be worked through slowly and painfully, until the couple reaches a decision that both can live with. However, generally speaking, when it comes to matters of preference and habit, whose responsibility is it to adapt? 

If I were talking to husbands, I would remind them that they are commanded to lay down their lives for their wives and to love their wives as Christ loved the church when He died for her. This would include dying to their desires for how to spend their money, their time, and their holidays.  Many men find it easier to literally give their lives for their wives than to die to their plans for how to spend their evenings or their weekends, where to go on vacation, or whether to spend money on a fishing boat or a family car.

However, since my target audience is primarily women, I am going to focus on the wife's responsibility to adapt to her husband.  I think it is God's will for wives to be willing to adapt their habits and preferences to fit their husband's. 

In Ephesians chapter 5 wives are commanded to adapt to their husbands:

22 Wives, be subject (be submissive and adapt yourselves) to your own husbands as [a service] to the Lord.
23 For the husband is head of the wife as Christ is the Head of the church, Himself the Savior of [His] body.
24 As the church is subject to Christ, so let wives also be subject in everything to their husbands.

Also in 1 Peter 3:1, a similar command is given:

In like manner, you married women, be submissive to your own husbands [subordinate yourselves as being secondary to and dependent on them, and adapt yourselves to them], so that even if any do not obey the Word [of God], they may be won over not by discussion but by the [godly] lives of their wives.

In fact, in Genesis 2:18, we learn that the woman was created in the beginning for the purpose of adapting to and helping her husband!

18 Now the Lord God said, It is not good (sufficient, satisfactory) that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper (suitable, adapted, complementary) for him.

I believe that biblically, it is primarily our responsibility as wives to adapt to our husbands, as we learn what it means to be an outstanding help meet to the husband the Lord has provided.  The specifics will vary according to the personality, calling and occupation of the man that God has called us to come along side of and help, support, and encourage.  Some husbands will have very definite ideas about everything.  Some will allow their wives much freedom to make decisions and manage the home the way she sees fit.  Some men may work from home and be very actively involved in the day-to-day lives of their wives and children.  Others will travel a lot, perhaps in service to our country or in service to our Lord.  (I can't help but think of the great responsibility that fell to Ruth Graham, wife of evangelist, Billy Graham, who was gone much of the time!)  God will equip us as wives with just the skills and abilities we need to adapt to, serve, minister, and help our husbands, especially if we marry according to His will.

"A wise woman patterns her life after her husband's. His working, playing, eating, and sleeping habits become hers."  ~ Debi Pearl, Created to be His Help Meet

Is there some area that you need to willingly adapt to your husband in??

Your Turn to Share:

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this subject. How have you adjusted and adapted to your husband?   Please share by leaving a comment here or over on my Facebook page, so we might all be encouraged and built up as wives!

If you were blessed or encouraged by this post, please consider sharing it with your friends on Facebook or other social media sites.  Thank you!

Link up:

I'd love to have you link up your blog to mine!  Please link up any past or present posts related to Christian marriage.  Don't forget to link back to my blog!  Thanks!

marriage mondays

Blogs I link up with from week to week:

Happy Wives Club


The Alabaster Jar

Marriage Moment

Growing Home

Courtship Connection


Messy Marriage

Wifey Wednesday button

Missional Women

Please link up your blog post on marriage below by entering the url of your specific post. Where it says "Your Name" enter the title of your blog post, not your personal name! Thanks! :)

Friday, June 21, 2013

From my Front Porch ~ June 21, 2013

from my front porch

Welcome back to my weekly series, From my Front Porch, where I share updates from my home and family. My hope is that you'll fix yourself a cup of coffee or tea, or perhaps even a glass of lemonade, and imagine us sitting together on my front porch, chatting about life and catching up on the latest news!  I hope you'll join me each Friday on My Front Porch!  

Around the House

We are slowly making our way through my new house.  I hope you are enjoying the tour!  It's forcing me to unpack boxes and clean rooms to be ready to show you around!  :)  Since we stopped to  "powder our noses" last week, let's continue the tour with the master bedroom.

We are blessed with a huge room that was already painted a soft green that works well with my existing decor.  :)

Well, that's my bedroom!  (As you may have noticed, I still have a box or two to sort through!  But, I've done well getting all the clutter cleared out!)  I'll show you the master bathroom and closet next week.  

Family News

As I told you last Friday, Joe came home!  It made for a great weekend!  :)

Then, Sunday was Father's Day. Alan got up early and made Blueberry Pancakes for the family!  Wasn't that sweet??  It is a perfect illustration of his servant leadership style!

Of course, the kids were delighted!  :)

After church, we ate a quick meal of sandwiches so we could hit the beach for the afternoon!  Alan was able to relax and "rest his eyes" as he soaked up some rays.  Then he played Bocce Ball with the boys.

It was a beautiful beach day!

Finally, we drug ourselves away from the soft sand and the shimmering sea and went home and grilled a bunch of hamburgers and hot dogs, which we quickly devoured!   (Ever wonder why being at the beach makes you so hungry??)  

Then, Alan opened his cards and gifts from the family . . . 

And ate one two big pieces of blueberry pound cake swimming in milk!  :)

I intended to post something inspiring about Father's Day . . . maybe a tribute to my father, but it just didn't happen!  Maybe next year!  :)

Do you remember last Friday when I told you that Tiffany and Hannah were coming home that day and bringing a surprise?

Well, the real surprise was that Tiffany's car had some major problems and had to have "emergency surgery," which meant that Tiffany and Hannah's stay in South Carolina was extended 4 extra days!  So, the "surprise" I was talking about didn't arrive until midnight on Tuesday!  (which means I didn't see it until Wednesday morning!)  ;)

Here's the long-awaited surprise:

My niece, Amber, is here for a visit!  :)  She was supposed to stay a month . . . but due to unforseen circumstances, she's only here for a week.  But, we are glad to have her for as long as she can stay!

Love this picture of her chilling at the pool!  (Apparently Bethany makes a good pillow!)  :)

Today we hope to take her to the beach (if she ever wakes up and I ever get off this computer!!!)  :)  So, I better run get ready!  

Note: This time next week I will be in wedding mode!!  Wow! I can't believe how quickly the time has flown by!

Thanks for stopping by my front porch for a visit!  If you have time, please drop by and visit with my dear friend, Lori.  She blogs from the front porch of her cozy little log cabin nestled in the woods of the South Carolina mountains.  You will enjoy her warm and witty writing style!  Tell her that Elizabeth sent you!  :)

Please join me again next Friday on my front porch!!

This post is linked up with:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...