Beautiful Work

Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us, and establish the work of our hands…. Psalm 90:17a

Products we like September 29, 2008

Filed under: Products we like — Andie @ 4:02 pm

I thought it would be fun to share some products that we really like.

My first one is Pantene Pro-V Style Texturize! Sculpting Wax

It gives a very similar effect to Bed Head Manipulator. But, it costs about 1/3 the price or less. Thanks to Lukas and Gretchen for telling Andrew and I about it!





The second is the not-so-cheap, but really nice Graco Tour Duo Stroller.

We decided to spring for this when Byron was born since he and Ruth are only 19 months apart. We also figured that we would be having more kids and get a lot of use out of it. I really like it. It’s quite large and heavy, like most double strollers. But, it fits in the trunk of our ’98 Accord and has room to stuff groceries around it. I like that you can access the bottom basket even when the back seat is reclined. For those of you with (or about to have) twins, you can fit two Graco car seats because there is a bar that can attach to hold the front one.  It has two removable adult cup holders and snack and cup holders for the kids, too. The wheels are more substantial that other strollers I’ve used and that makes it a lot smoother on bumpy surfaces. Lastly, the storage is unbelievable. I often stuff pounds and pounds of groceries in the basket instead of getting a grocery buggy. (Had to share some southern roots there- that’s a grocery cart for the rest of you!)


It’s Chai season! September 26, 2008

Filed under: Recipes — Andie @ 11:52 am

This chai mix has gotten SO MANY good reviews in my home and been passed on to most who have tried it. I wanted to share this recipe (also below) which saves some money if you like hot drinks. Also, for those of you who might be concerned about so much sugar, I substitute fructose, which you can find at It is a natural sweetener that doesn’t raise your blood sugar like refined sugar. I have not nailed down the exact amount to use, but I’d try 1 1/2 cups for this recipe. When using fructose I also put about 3 heaping tablespoons in my drink. Just experiment if your chai seems too watery. 


Chai Tea Mix
Submitted by: Jo
Rated: 5 out of 5 by 445 members
Prep Time: 30 Minutes
Cook Time: 2 Minutes
Ready In: 32 Minutes
Yields: 36 servings
“A dry mix for instant Chai tea that you can keep on hand for those frequent Chai tea emergencies. It’s also a popular gift.”
1 cup nonfat dry milk powder
1 cup powdered non-dairy
1 cup French vanilla flavored
powdered non-dairy creamer
2 1/2 cups white sugar
1 1/2 cups unsweetened
instant tea
2 teaspoons ground ginger
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon ground cardamom
1. In a large bowl, combine milk powder, non-dairy creamer, vanilla flavored creamer, sugar and instant tea. Stir in ginger, cinnamon, cloves and cardamom. In a blender or food processor, blend 1 cup at a time, until mixture is the consistency of fine powder.
2. To serve: Stir 2 heaping tablespoons Chai tea mixture into a mug of hot water.
ALL RIGHTS RESERVED © 2008 Printed from 9/26/2008
Click here to find out more!

seeing our love September 25, 2008

Filed under: Mothering,Wife-ing — Kate @ 4:17 pm

Matt and I have just started taking a parenting class at church and last night was our second meeting!  It’s been a while since the last classes that we took and with the kids growing way too fast we were ready for our next dose of parenting wisdom :)  While we have been gleaning some wisdom about instilling morality in our growing children and discipline issues, the biggest thing that we focused on last night was spending time as husband and wife that the kids can see!  We were challenged to have ‘couch time’ – 15 minutes of husband and wife together on the couch talking while the kids are around to see.  So often it is easy to get caught up in meeting the kids’ needs since their needs are much often much louder, seem more urgent and can even be easier to ‘fix.’  We forget that our relationship as husband and wife is the first priority ALL the time, not just after the kids go to bed.  It’s good for me to remember that my role as wife to Matt comes first and that it is okay (and a good thing!) to let the kids see that!  They need to know (and see!) that Momma and Daddy love each other even more than we love them.


A Wonderful Husband September 24, 2008

Filed under: Mothering,Wife-ing — jen1mac @ 1:11 pm


I have been told by many of my friends that my husband is very unique.  I am really starting to see that more and more especially since he has been working from home full time.  You see my husband helps me with everything from laundry to cleaning to cooking and yes even diaper changing if no one else is around.  God knew just the husband I needed.  With all 3 of my pregnancies I was on bed rest for a really long time, and then I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia where I am in pain most of the time and tired all the time!  Patrick and I work very well as a team so he is what makes me enjoy being a WHAM because otherwise I wouldn’t have the energy to read with my kids or do laundry or cook because our family pitches in together to do all of the work around the house.  Thank you, my hubby, for making it a joy to be your wife and mother to your kids.



Filed under: Homemaking,Hospitality — Gretchen @ 8:18 am

I wanted to share a little on one of my favorite subjects – hospitality!!  I absolutely love having people in my home.  For the time the Lord has provided a home in which we can host overnight guests comfortably.  We did in our duplex but it was a little cozy and I could not do everything I would have wanted to for fear of the children getting to it first :)  I love thinking through what guests would need upon their arrival at our home.  I will share a few things I always try to stock in my guest room.

  • Some kind of flower arrangement
  • bottled water (for at night or when we are planning all day trips as they probably did not bring a water bottle with them unless they are in college)
  • toiletries – i leave a basket out with random samples I have collected from different hotels, razors, shaving gel, cotton balls, cotton swabs, and of course clean towels
  • a treat of some sort – usually a really good piece of chocolate in case they need something sweet at the end of the day
  • alarm clock
  • magazines in case of insomnia
  • a fan in case they need white noise or are hot
  • extra blankets
  • a place to store their stuff – I have lived in very cramped quarters but have always managed to clear out some closet or space for their luggage and such
  • maps and brochures from local attractions if they are staying with you but not going to be with you all the time :) or as we like to do bookmarks on your computer of things that they might be interested in so they can easily access idea on the computer and print off directions
  • easy breakfasts and snacks that they can grab are always a good idea too – like Leah mentioned earlier I try to have different kinds of muffins or breads in the freezer that I can pull out for easy snacking or breakfast.  Ideas for easy breakfast included an assortment of individual cereal boxes, yogurt parfaits, muffins, fruit, juice, instant oatmeal, or mini quiche.  Easy is a key when you are feeding like 8 to 10 people :)

These are all just ideas to help get us thinking on what our guests might need.  I am learning in my role as a WHAM that most times I will not accomplish all that I would like to before guest arrive.  I am learning to make a list of things that must get done and then letting other things go if it compromises my family or if I have had kidney stones or the girls get sick or if  someone needs help.   The most important thing is that guests not walk into a war zone where the mom has neglected people to get her tasks done.  I have done this and been completely frantic by the time guests arrived.  I am learning that a peaceful home is more important and welcoming than a house that is spic and span and every detail attended to.  There is a balance that I will probably never achieve but which I will continue to strive for :)


“Don’t Make Me Count To Three!”

Filed under: Keeping inspired,Mothering — Leah @ 6:00 am

“Do you find yourself threatening, repeating your instructions, or raising your voice in an attempt to get your children to obey? Are you discouraged because it seems you just can’t reach the heart of your child?”

My answers? Yes, yes, and YES!

The above is an excerpt from in reference to her book “Don’t Make Me Count to Three!”.  This book has been recommended to me by several moms I love and respect (I am excited for the day the library emails to me and tells me it’s ready for pick up!).  In the meanwhile, I have been listening to some Family Life Today podcasts that Ginger has done on parenting young children and have been SUPER encouraged by them!   She does a great job of giving parents practical ways to get to the heart of a situation and parent your child biblically in the moment.


So, how was YOUR day? September 23, 2008

Filed under: Keeping inspired,Mothering — Andie @ 8:33 am

This was yesterday. In addition to the volatile state we were all in, my internet was not working well. So, please excuse the late post!

During nap time yesterday, I realized how incredibly impatient and generally grouchy I’d been with my children all morning. I listened to a good message on parenting  by David and Sally Michael that I checked out from our church library. I wish I could share all the insights I’ve gained from the MOMS (our church’s moms’ group) recordings I check out. But, for now, I will just share what gave perspective to an irritable and tired mom yesterday. (By the way, I make a habit of asking forgiveness from my kids when I have sinned against them. This helps them realize I need God and it restores our relationship.)

– This time with children is SHORT. The speakers I listened to were grandparents and I trust their judgment. They encouraged moms to buy up the opportunities with our little ones now before they are gone. 

-Be encouraging and set an uplifting tone as much as possible because mom’s attitude make a difference. 

– We have to say “no” so much by necessity, focus on saying yes (like Leah mentioned). When our answer is always “no” or overly practical, it can squelch the natural enjoyment our children have of simple things. 

– We play a large part in developing children’s appetites, they will usually learn to like what we “feed” them. If we feed them classical music, they will likely gain an appreciation for it. If we feed them TV, that’s what they learn to love. This is not meant to be legalistic. The point is only to think about what appetites we’re encouraging.  

– God has made you (with your weaknesses, quirks and unique strengths) to parent your children. Avoid comparing yourself, your family, your husband to others. Honor the One who called you to your specific role as mother.