Tag Archives: change

Making Time For Devotions

If you’ve been following along with my blog you probably have seen that we are really trying to make some positive changes around this little cabin. I will be the first to admit that towards the end of last year I was not a very happy Momma. We were in the midst of a very rough parenting phase with my two special needs kiddos who are 16 & 11 (going on 30)… their attitudes and behavior were at a point that I really doubted my parenting skills and abilities. Something had to change, actually a lot of somethings had to change.

Personal Devotions

One big thing that I had gotten away from was my daily devotions. I wasn’t having my ‘quiet time’ in the mornings before the kids woke up which meant I wasn’t having any one on one meetings with my LORD. Boy have I missed those sessions!

Well, 2019 is the year for me to stop wishing for CHANGE and to start making it happen! I’ve been posting a lot about some of the things we’ve been working on and one of those the past couple of weeks has been to start making time for devotions.

Not everyone may feel the same as I do but I really do need some time to myself. I need time to plan, to organize my thoughts, and talk to my LORD. I also have things I want to do like blog, arts & crafts projects, and I have a ton of reading to catch up on.

First things first though is making time for my daily devotions. I’ve been trying to get back into the habit of getting up early before the kids so that I can have my ‘quiet time’. I’ll admit that this hasn’t been easy especially on cold mornings like this today. Then yesterday I got up early but I had issues with the coffee maker and ended up not getting to my ‘quiet time’. I like to get comfy when I study or read so I like to have a drink with me. Sometimes I will snuggle up with a warm blanket and other times I might like to sit outside on the porch just depending on the whether and how I feel.

I also keep a notebook with me to jot down notes and also to keep track of different things I am praying about or people/situations I am praying for. One of the really important things I really try to include in prayer is our homeschool journey because without GOD’s help I can’t do this. This is a good way to keep myself organized and I can look back through my notebook to see just how much GOD has done for me and my family through the year.

Before we moved I had transformed part of my closet into a place where I could find some ‘quiet time’ even in the middle of the day. I kept my BIBLES, devotionals, and prayer journal in my desk there. It was so easy to ‘find’ time because I had everything organized. However here, in this little cabin, I don’t have a dedicated space so it has been more of a challenge for me.

Secondly, I never seem to know where to start when it comes to reading my BIBLE. Sometimes I’ll go through a phase where I just open it up and read wherever and then other times I try to follow along with a book like one of these here:

First Light Women’s Daily Devotional & Journal

Starting Your Day Right

I have started both of these books at different times but have never completed either one of them… sad but true. This year I am determined to finish one of them!

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I also like to keep some of these FREE booklets in my bags so that I have something to read when waiting at appointments or such:

Our Daily Bread

In Touch

There are also a wide variety of email devotionals and apps that you can use from your phone which make it so much easier to do this on the go. I have also found this site HERE which has many plans to use and I am going to try to read through the BIBLE this year… even though some of it may be more listening than reading. This is a goal I have had since I was young and I’ve never completely read through the entire bible yet. The site has several other FREE plans to help you with your spiritual life and you can even join as a group with friends to encourage each other.Y

Many people think that devotions need to be an in depth study but that’s not true. Your devotions should be what feels right for you. The LORD will lead you to more in depth studies when HE knows you are ready… and HE will make it all POSSIBLE.

I do have a couple of Proverbs 31 studies that I’ve bookmarked to work on this year as well as some others that I’ll share as we go through the year. I don’t want to overwhelm anyone with too much information. If there is something specific that you FEEL led to study then you can always do a GOOGLE search on the subject (ex: becoming a proverbs 31 woman bible study) and find many options to choose from.

If you aren’t sure how to set up your prayer journal you can find lots of useful ideas and printables HERE or some more great ideas HERE.

Family Devotions

I feel that not only do I need to do my personal devotions but I probably need to start including more time for family devotions as well. Now we do have some BIBLE studies and such worked into our homeschool routine but sometimes we may need to add to it.

We may try to start having a scripture reading at a designated meal time or maybe just have a certain time of day to read scripture… I’m not really sure about my plans for this addtional devotion time yet but I am working on it. Sometimes we have BIBLE discussions in the van when we are going places so really it could happen anytime and anywhere.

I have found a few different ideas for family devotions HERE and HERE. If you don’t like either of those you can check out this GOOGLE search. My kids and I really enjoyed using this book here too:

Our Daily Bread for Kids: 365 Meaningful Moments with God

Couple Devotions

This is another area that I think is important but we don’t really do this yet. We have discussions on occasion but never anything set or intentional. Now for this to work it has to be something that we both can agree on and something we can work into our schedules.

Many other people may find it difficult as well but remember that you don’t have to physically be in the same place at the same time. You can decide to them via phone, FACETIME, or SKYPE or maybe just have a designated time each day to spend on your devotions.

I’ve found a few ideas for couple devotions HERE and HERE.

Not married or don’t have a partner? You can always spend a little time praying for that special person. I know I prayed for Mr. Awesome before I even met him and I am so glad I did. I loved these books HERE and HERE for this.

In the end I don’t think you will regret any time you spend on your devotions. You should definitely start out slowly and work your way into this new routine. It takes a little while to get a new habit started and if you happen to be like me this will be a habit that will grow on you and get easier as time goes by. This one habit can make such a BIG difference in your whole LIFE… I know it does in mine.

If it seems that you are having trouble getting it started then pray for GOD to lead you in the way you should go. Maybe you are trying to do too much? Or maybe what you are trying to do just isn’t what is best for you or your family.

Have a blessed weekend!

A Plan Of Action For A New You In The New Year

So a few days ago I posted about my goals for 2019. I’m not waiting until the New Year to get started because there is no time like NOW to get started on these goals. You don’t have to wait either and you can follow along with me on my journey to finding a simpler, happier, and better functioning lifestyle here in our little cabin.

It’s so easy to get discouraged with LIFE at times, I know because I’ve felt myself falling into a HUGE pit of discouragement lately. It feels like I just keep hitting walls in so many areas of LIFE and I just don’t know how to get past them. The one thing I do know is the GOD is in control and if there is something in my way HE can help me overcome it.

I also know that a lot of times our failures come from inside of ourselves. We get unhappy with things and want to change them but sometimes the change must come from us first. This can be hard to do and sometimes it can be hard to admit that we aren’t PERFECT.

Over the holidays so many people are posting pictures of their families. Many of these pictures seem to show PERFECT homes and families but behind the scenes can be a different story. In reality LIFE is MESSY in so many ways. I can tell you that my LIFE is MESSY for sure with so many kids and special needs not to mention that we HOMESCHOOL and LIVE in a TINY CABIN. Boy can it get MESSY. Don’t let those pictures get you feeling depressed or down. You can follow along with me, a normal (well, somewhat normal depending on you definition of normal) Momma, as I tackle some of this crazy mess we call LIFE.

Continue reading A Plan Of Action For A New You In The New Year

Help! I’m Drowning, Or At Least It Feels That Way…

I started out this morning with over 2,000 emails which was a bit overwhelming. I had cleared a few hundred of them on Saturday but it barely made a dent in the pile.

Then today as I was catching up on emails and such I happened to see that we have HURRICANE MICHAEL headed our way. Just another thing to add to the list of things to think about. While we are not on the coast nor have we been put under the ‘State of Emergency’ the counties right next to us are so that means we do have potential to see some damage. This also means that we need to make some emergency preparations and be prepared for when the storm hits. As we have learned in the past the storms don’t always go along their predicted path.

**Update: The state of emergency has been expanded from 26 counties to 35, including ours, since this post was written. Our prayers are going out to all of those in the affected area as well as the first responders, National Guard, and all of those working to keep everyone safe. Continue reading Help! I’m Drowning, Or At Least It Feels That Way…

Getting Back To My Morning Routine

Hey everyone! I’m slowly getting back to routines and really hope to start blogging on a more regular basis. This move has really been crazy but as things are settling down we are starting to get back to our routines, and changing them as needed.

Just wanted to give you all a peek into our morning routine today and share some of what we’ve been up to. Continue reading Getting Back To My Morning Routine

Getting Routines Started 101

‘Your first obligation as a parent is to not bring chaos into your kids’ lives.’

OK, I should’ve written this before I started on the other posts about routines. I didn’t realize, until I was writing another post, how complicated and daunting routines can seem. Truth be told we all have some kind of routine already.

**Please note this post does contain affiliate links to which I may, possibly, earn a small commission from if you click on and purchase an item. For full disclosure click here. Continue reading Getting Routines Started 101

Taking out the trash.

Continue reading Taking out the trash.

Its Not About Me.

Original Blog Post July 12, 2016
Over the past few weeks I have had my feelings hurt quite a bit by someone close to me. I couldn’t understand what I had done to deserve the treatment I was receiving. It brought back so many painful childhood memories and was making me think about making some major life changes.
I didn’t confide in many people about how I was feeling and those people didn’t believe what was going on could be as bad as I felt it was until they saw it for their own eyes. Feeling justified in my feelings didn’t help anything. It didn’t change the behavior either.
Then things kind of blew up a few days ago. This person was being more annoying than ever. This person had to be the center of attention at ALL times. They demanded the attention and if they didn’t get it then they would make up something to get it. I kept feeling like I was being reprimanded for things that they imagined had happened. I noticed that problems were being instigated by these imaginary events. This person was becoming increasingly arrogant and rude to everyone around them.
Finally myself and someone else just told them that we were tired of it. Apparently one after another we let him know how we felt. Did that stop the behavior? No, because it got turned around that we were the ones with the problem. They were the innocent party in the whole mess and couldn’t understand why people were upset with them. Things were a bit tense for a bit but eventually cooled down.
I had lost my temper, which takes a lot, because this person kept accusing me of causing something. Finally after beating myself up over this I had enough. The next time they got in my face about it then I just told them to ‘Stop!’, and I walked away but I ended up looking like the dramatic one.
As I’ve thought about the events I realize that this has been an ongoing problem. When I was younger I never felt like anything I did was ever good enough. No matter what award or achievement I reached this person always had something to top it. No matter how much stuff this person has they always need more. If the neighbor gets something then they have to have one bigger and better too. (Even if they have 10 of them not being used already.) They were always quick to dole out criticism but angered if someone gave it back to them. These are just a few of the things that I have been reminded of.
As I’ve thought about the events I realize that this has been an ongoing problem. When I was younger I never felt like anything I did was ever good enough. No matter what award or achievement I reached this person always had something to top it. No matter how much stuff this person has they always need more. If the neighbor gets something then they have to have one bigger and better too. (Even if they have 10 of them not being used already.) They were always quick to dole out criticism but angered if someone gave it back to them. These are just a few of the things that I have been reminded of.
When it boils down to it this person is selfish and doesn’t truly care about the feelings of the people around them. They only look at what they can gain from being around others and don’t take into account how others will feel about being used.
This person was robbing me of my joy. I no longer wanted to even be around them. They even had me questioning my own memories about past events.
Well I say enough is enough. I refuse to be a doormat for the rude and degrading behaviors that have been going on lately. Is this going to be easy? Probably not, but I am determined that things will change or other changes will have to be made.

Trying to find a new balance

Original Blog Post May 20, 2016
I haven’t posted in a bit as I’ve been so busy here at home. We went on a camping trip to RELAX… yeah, not a lot of relaxing when you take kids and grandpa with you. It was a very fun and interesting trip though. I will definitely want to do it again soon.
For now though we just finished up school and we are still working on wedding plans. I managed to get most of my post divorce paperwork and changes completed. Now I am just waiting for everything to ‘get situated’ and return to ‘normal’. Whatever that may be. I’ve been questioning a lot of things lately, mainly my sanity at times. I’ve tried a few new things and looking forward to exploring new places around me. There are so many things that I want to do and try.
One of those things was fishing, from a boat, and we did that this past weekend. It was WONDERFUL! I think I am a saltwater fishing addict now. On the other hand I also have my kids to tend to and look after. They alone are enough to keep me busy. My house is a wreck right now and lets not even talk about the yard work.
So how do I find a happy balance between work and play? I’m working on that a little at a time. Lately it has been more tempting to play more but the house work is starting to tell on me. So this weekend will probably be spent cleaning and taking care of yard work. I still get overwhelmed at times, dealing with post divorce stuff and planning my daughter’s wedding. Not too mention stress when things don’t go as planned like a NO SHOW for visitation. Or when the kids decide to act out at the same time. Its hard but I manage one day at a time and with lots of prayer.
I know I fail every day in one way or another but I just pray for forgiveness and strength to keep pressing on. I will keep putting one foot in front of the other and hoping for the best each day. I know that every day will get easier and that sometimes I will have really bad days but they will pass. All of these struggles will shape me into a stronger person and I am so thankful for that.

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I still believe in fairy tales…

Original Blog Post May 26, 2016
Even though my last relationship ended badly and I was hurt beyond belief, I survived. I know that sometimes things just aren’t meant to be. That’s OK. We are working on being better people and being the best possible parents we can be to our children. We just weren’t good together.
I didn’t want to admit it at first but it soon became painfully clear that we just didn’t click anymore. It was hard to admit that to myself as I felt like a failure. I desperately clung to the dreams we had made and I tried so hard to make him feel the way he felt in the beginning.
That was a big part of the problem. I couldn’t change his feelings and I resented him for not wanting what I wanted. I resented him for a lot of things. Mostly I resented him for being happy without me and without our family. Does this mean that I still resent him? Maybe, sometimes, yes. It still hurts to know that he could just walk away from what I felt that we had. It hurts that he could walk away from our family like he did. It’s not fun and I hate that he left me alone. I felt like that was so totally unfair.
Well, that’s on him. I can only control how I feel and what I do. If he felt that I wasn’t what he wanted then that’s OK. If he felt that his family was too much of a burden and that they were cramping his life style then that’s OK too. I know that there is still a chance that I may find my happily ever after. Maybe I already have. My relationship status doesn’t define who I am or how I should feel. My past doesn’t necessarily define my future.The fact that I have a large family does make matters a little more complicated. I need to be aware of how everything affects my family.
That doesn’t mean that I can’t dream. I still believe in fairy tales. Maybe it won’t be a knight in shining armor that steals my heart away but I know there are still good men out there. They may be really hard to find but I know they are there. There are men who put their families first and who work hard each and every day. They aren’t afraid to get dirty and they will do what it takes to get the job done. They can be tough as nails but still be sensitive when you need a shoulder to cry on.
I believe there will come one who takes my breath away and causes my heart to flutter. One who makes me smile at just the thought of him and I know he will feel the same about me. One who will wash away all the pain from my past and show me how it feels to be treated right.
So for now I will be patient. I will try everyday to be a better person than I was yesterday. I will be stronger and I will learn from my mistakes. I will have faith that my fairy tale will have a happy ending.

Sense of Entitlement

Original Blog Post April 12, 2016
I went out to do my morning chores and before I even got the brooding pen I could hear them. It was the 3 little goslings just going off about something. I go in and they immediately run up to me, holler, and run back to the waterer. It was almost empty so I assumed that was the problem.
I clean it up, fill it with fresh water and put it back in place. Everyone runs up and gets a drink. Then the 3 musketeers start hollering again. They run to me and back to the feeder. Apparently it wasn’t as full as they like it. I add more feed. Everyone runs over to check it out. The 3 musketeers were happy for a minute and then they started up again.Why? I haven’t a clue this time. As I walked out and closed the door behind me I realized that they reminded me of my one daughter.
No matter what she has she is constantly complaining that she wants or needs something different. If she sees a commercial on TV she wants the advertised item no matter if it would be of benefit to her or not. We have had many a talk about this. And sometimes the ‘You know the kids in other parts of the world would be happy to have this food, toy or whatever it is that she is complaining about.’ slips out. Now I know all kids complain and all kids ask for things but she is different. She expects these things just because she wants them. Notice I didn’t say she needs them. I am trying to teach my kids the difference between wants and needs.
Lately though I have been making some changes. If you need something then Momma will provide it but if you want something, depending on the cost of this something, you will need to work for it. You will need to EARN it.
Sometimes the idea of work is enough to make them rethink what they wanted. If they still want it then I will ask them what they think should be done to earn it. Usually their idea is not in line with my idea so we talk about it. If the job is completed then they get the item, if not then nothing is earned.
To earn something makes it mean more to them. It helps them develop a sense of accomplishment and make them more responsible for the item. This new plan has also cut back on some of the complaining and whining. I also thought about myself during this process. So often we wonder why things are the way they are and we pray for a change. We do the same things the kids do.
‘God, why is everything so hard for me?’
‘Why does nothing seem to go right?’
‘Why can’t I find an easy job like that?’
Instead of whining and complaining we need to ask him to lead us in the direction we should go. Ask him to show us what we need to do to earn what it is that we are wanting. The greater the struggle the more we will appreciate the end result.

Open Doors

Sometimes we go through things in life that are really difficult. Just this past year I have been through a few very difficult things that I really didn’t understand. One thing I have learned is that when God closes one door He will open another one. When He takes away something it is because He has something better in store for us.
I know that when you are in the throes of a major struggle or event it is hard to find comfort in the fact that all things work for the greater good. It is hard to see that He has a bigger plan in mind and that He already knows what lies ahead. It is almost impossible to accept the circumstances and depend on Him.
If we can trust Him He will show us the way. He has created us in our own unique fashion. Each of us has different gifts, talents, and abilities that He can use for His purpose. Before we can see the doors He is opening for us we must let Him close the ones behind us. Remembering that no one can open a door that He has closed and that we must let go of the missed opportunities and quit living in the past.
The future can be uncertain and it can be scary to determine what opportunities would be the right ones to venture into. Just because something feels right doesn’t mean it is right or that it was sent from God. On the other had just because something feels uncertain or questionable does not mean it isn’t right or that it wasn’t sent from God.
How do we know what doors to go through? This can be tricky but we should always know that it wouldn’t go against God’s word, if it was sent by Him. If we pray about the matter we will receive an answer about whether it is right or not.
Sometimes we think we have received the ‘go ahead’ only to find that we are facing many troubles. That could be because we didn’t actually receive the confirmation or because we face many enemies in our journeys. We will find that we need to fully depend on God to lead us where we need to go.
Our enemies will try to distract us from our purpose, they may attack us directly or they may use others to hinder us. They will try to tempt us away from the doors that God has opened. These attacks can be physical or spiritual in nature. They could even be disguised as something we have wanted to try to lure us away. Don’t be fooled. Don’t be discouraged.
We should recognize these battles as progress because there is a force that knows we are working to fulfill God’s purpose and plan. Just because God opened the door doesn’t mean it will be smooth sailing. If we didn’t have these struggles then maybe we should wonder if we are on the right path. Just remember to follow God and ask Him for wisdom and guidance.
When the battles get rough remember that God has a reason for opening the doors He has opened for us. He wants us to go through these doors and down these paths for our own good. When we feel like giving up we need to remember that He is our strength and our refuge. He will give us victory over every obstacle we face on our journey. He will bring us peace and joy in our lives.
Always trust God because He has the plan and He will always do what is best for us.