Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Helpful Bible Study Tool - Look at the Book


Look at the Book from Desiring God on Vimeo.
(If you're viewing this in your email you will have to click through to the blog to view the video)

There is a new online Bible Study Tool from Desiring God called Look at the Book and I am hooked.  It is a video series where the emphasis is on the text and John Piper walks you through how he marks the text, what he sees, how me makes connections and leaves us with a better understanding of the text and how to tear it apart and see and find the treasures of God's Word for yourself.

It is great for family or personal devotions.  Each video is 8-12 minutes long and has an outline available of the teaching time.

Mama's this would be a great addition to your homeschool studies or a great addition to your normal bible study time.  Take the time to watch the introduction video and at least the first lesson - you will be hooked too.  Make sure to sit with an open bible and notebook so you can follow along.

You can visit the website here - Look at the Book - to find all the videos and they are posting two new ones every week.

Here is the first full lesson on 2 Corinthians 8:1-2:



2 Corinthians 8:1–2 // An Abundance of Joy from Desiring God on Vimeo.
(If you're viewing this in your email you will have the click through to the blog to view the video)



Related Links:
Look at the Book - Desiring God



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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

My Favorite Planner for the Homemaker


I love planners and have tried a multitude over the years but one favorite that has been a good fit for me in my role as a homemaker is the Homemaker's Daily Planner

It was designed by a wife and mother who knew the varying needs a homemaker needs in scheduling her days.  Rarely are two of our days alike and this planner offers the flexibility we need as keepers of  our homes.  Sue Hooley is the designer behind the planner and she has been married for 24 years and is the mother of six children.



How I Use My Planner:

There are seven sections in the planner.  The Yearly Section looks ahead to 2016 so you can put any future events on paper so they will not be forgotten as you're planning ahead. In this area I may write future vacation plans or special events like weddings I know the date of ahead of time.

Monthly Section


In the Monthly Section the year to date is broken down into months.  This is where you get an overview of your month and can write in all your appointments and events coming up.

Weekly Section


The Weekly Section is where the road meets the rubber for me.  My planning for the week is usually done on Sunday evenings and I appreciate the room allotted for each day's tasks and the overview section to write in any extras that I need to tend to that week.  The planner leaves room to put your menu plan in for the day, has an encouraging verse and a monthly calendar overview.

Task List


The Tasks List & Projects Sections gives me space to plan for other items I hope to get through in the course of the year and I turn to them as I plan my weeks each Sunday night to see if there is room to get to any additional projects.  It may be planning an event for church or getting a closet cleaned out or working on a photo book or writing a letter to a faraway friend.

The Info Section is handy for important numbers and addresses.  My doctors, accountant and family and church family members information is kept here handy at my fingertips.  It is also helpful when you are meeting a new friend to quickly get their information to enter into your phone at a later time.

Shopping List


Last but not least is the Shopping Section which has perforated shopping lists for every week of the year to use.  It is great to jot down your needs as the week moves on and helpful for your menu planning and shopping.



The planner is small enough to fit in your purse or diaper bag (6 x 9 inches) but still big enough to keep lots of information right at your fingertips.

Homemaker's Friend is offering a free copy with your purchase of the 2014 calendar (while supplies last) so get started on your organization before the new year starts with that special offer!!

If you are looking for a planner that is easy to use and helpful to you as a homemaker you don't have to look any further.  The Homemaker's Daily Planner is practical and affordable ($13.99) and I highly recommend it!








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Thursday, October 16, 2014

Thoughts on Contentment



We have been on the road for quite awhile and that has given me some time to tackle my growing book list.  The Greener Grass Conspiracy: Finding Contentment on Your Side of the Fence by Stephen Altrogge is one I will find myself revisiting frequently.

This book was such a refreshment as it reminded me how rich we are in Christ.  I just want to leave you with a few nuggets that I wrote down in my journal.  May they encourage you to not look to the unsatisfying pleasures this world has to offer but to find your true satisfaction and joy in Christ and in Him alone.

I have been given much but I still lose focus when I take my eyes off of Christ and look around at what others have and not just materially but how they have been gifted or their friendships or whatever it may be.  The snare to compare leaves us in a sinful pattern that brings only discontentment.  

May you be encouraged by the thoughts below and The Greener Grass Conspiracy is one I highly recommend to put on your must read list:

"If you follow Jesus you will have every spiritual need met.  Forgiveness, adoption, spiritual strength, everything.  And if we have all our spiritual needs met and are content with what we have, that is great gain."


"Godliness + Contentment = Great Gain"
(I Timothy 6:6)

"Discontentment begins when I start trying to be God.  Discontentment happens when I attempt to displace God from his rightful place at the center of the universe.  When I think that everything should run according to my plans instead of God's plans.  When I forget that God is God and that he is allowed to do with me whatever he wants, whatever will bring him glory.  Discontentment results from a big view of myself and a very little view of God."

"Contentment is inward, untouchable by circumstances, out of the reach of trouble.  It can't be stolen away by sickness or poverty, can't be ruined by the loss of a job or house or spouse.  Biblical contentment is not rooted in circumstances but in the infinitely stronger foundation of God himself."

"If we want contentment we need to spend time, much time, lingering in the presence of God.  We need to go to the place where contentment is found, to regularly drink from the fountain of joy.  We need to let our eyes pore over the pages of sacred Scripture and to listen closely as God speaks to our hearts.  We need to commune with God by praying to him and by fellowshipping with the people of God.  If we're not consistently spending time in the presence of God, we won't be content.  Period."

"Life is a precious gift from God.  He doesn't owe me a minute or a breath.  Yet this morning I'm alive.  God sustained me through the night and gave me at least one more day to enjoy."

"In Christ we can be truly content while on this earth, but we'll never be fully satisfied.  The day of total, complete and ultimate satisfaction is still coming.  The day we see Jesus face-to-face and look into the eyes of our Savior, we'll say, "Now I'm truly satisfied."


~ all the above quotes are from The Greener Grass Conspiracy by Stephen Altrogge


"I have heard of some good old woman in a cottage, who had nothing but a piece of bread and a little water.  Lifting up her hands, she said a blessing, 'What all this and Christ too?'"~ Charles Spurgeon



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Friday, October 03, 2014

Weekend Nuggets - Under the Book, Food Allergies, Messy Churches, Blogs Going Cold and Much More!


At the moment you are reading this my husband and I are in Africa.  I am hoping to post photos on my Instagram and Facebook page periodically of our mission trip there so please come follow along with me.  

Where I have been - the top two links below probably describe my absence pretty well. 

Blogs Gone Cold - "Conservative female bloggers tend to publish less consistently than their male counterparts. Three women writers explore the reasons why."

7 Real-Life Reasons Womens' Blogs Go Cold  want to share my thoughts on this because women bloggers do bemoan the fact that we don’t write consistently. The topic recently came up in a mastermind group: “How do you find time to write consistently?”

Some Other Good Reads from the Past Week:

Reason Behind Increasing Food Allergies DiscoveredTry to remember grade school. (This may take either a few seconds or hours, depending on how far into the vault those memories are located.) Remember when it came time for lunch. Now, try to remember how many times you heard the phrase "food allergy."

Under the BookWe like to “interview” normal members of our church once a month in our Sunday evening service and I am still pondering a comment made by one of my sisters a couple of weeks ago.

Why Leaves Change Color - A great video to watch with the kids

Thank God for a Messy Church It’s is God’s grace to you if your church is messy. I heard those words come out of my mouth yesterday as I was guest-preaching at a church close to home. I said them, and I believe them. At least, I believe them most of the time

Favorites from the Blog Here This Week:



Last but not least - Have you joined in on the Homemaking from Scratch Conference yet?  Click on the photo below to get all the details and please join me as I share about how routines and simple homemaking schedules have turned my days from chaos to calmness.  

Homemaking From Scratch Conference 2014




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Monday, September 29, 2014

Announcing the Homemaking from Scratch Conference - October 7-9



Ladies I have been so excited to share with you that I am speaking at the first annual Homemaking from Scratch Conference that will be held October 7-9, 2014.  What I am most thankful about is the affordability and convenience of this eConference.  No need to travel, get babysitters, worry about your family while you're away or put a burden on your budget.  This conference comes to you in the convenience of your own home and works with your schedule.  

The sessions are all pre-recorded and there are 4 scheduled for each day of the conference (12 sessions total).  When you purchase the conference the sessions are yours to keep -forever!  You can pause them, listen to them at a later date or go right along with the conference on those days and enjoy fellowship time in Facebook groups with each speaker too.  

During the conference, the speakers will be available to chat with and answer your questions through a live party going on in a private Facebook group for all attendees.  

The Homemaking from Scratch Conference is at a very affordable cost of $24.95 when you pre-register (register early to save $5) or at $29.95 once the conference starts.  

Homemaking From Scratch Conference 2014

When you pre-register for the conference you receive $200 in Homemaking bonus items (items like, cleaning schedules, prayer cards, eBooks and so much more!).  

Homemaking From Scratch Online Conference

You also receive a Homemaking From Scratch PDF Conference notebook so you can follow along with each session.  

Homemaking From Scratch Online Conference


Take a peek at the Sessions and Speakers:

Christin Slade: Joyful Mothering

· BiblicalMotherhood - A Heart to Heart

Was is the basis for BiblicalMotherhood? How can we parent with one foot firmly planted in Scripture? In this encouraging session, Christin reminds us of the overwhelming grace that God gives us to be godly mothers and examples to our children. Get ready to have a heart to heart with Christin on the basis of Biblical Motherhood,legalism, anger, and more!

Hilary Kimes Bernstein: Accidentally Green

· Making Healthy Choices in Your Home

Do you want to create a healthier,more natural home but have no idea where to start? Are you confused by all the ingredients in your beauty, skincare, cleaning, and household products and feeltotally overwhelmed? Hilary shares her story and how her family came to realize that the products within her house were toxic and dangerous! She then gives you all the tools you need to identify dangerous products lurking in your medicine cabinet, how to find healthy and natural alternatives, and how you can do all this while saving money! 

Marci Ferrell: Thankful Homemaker

· The Benefits of Simple Homemaking Routines

This session is your chance to learn from an older, wise, Titus 2 woman on what it means to be a Biblical Homemaker.How can we glorify God within our Home? Marci walks you step by step how to create smooth homemaking routines so that you can better gain control of your home, your day, and your life! This session is packed full of practical advice,wisdom from Scripture, and a heavy dose of Grace. Learn how to craft a homemaking routine and schedule that works for your family! 

Marlene Griffith - A Diligent Heart

· Keeping Marriages Strong & Growing

Keeping your marriage strong, and always growing, is really hard work! Sometimes, even the smallest communication can be hard.  In this session, Marlene shares from her own personal experience, what it takes to really keep your marriage going strong and growing in the Lord. She takes an honest look at what it means to have a Spirit-led marriage and how our willingness to be immersed in God's Word is so vital to our marriages. 

Dana K White - A Slob Comes Clean

· Decluttering- Tips and Tricks that Work in ANY Home

Clutter is often the #1 stumbling block to a clean home. Too much stuff all over means a messy house, a harder time extending hospitality, and a cluttered mind. Dana approaches this subject of decluttering from a Biblical perspective - why it matters - and why cleaning can become an idol. Listen to this session and you will walk away encouraged and equipped with hands on tools for delucttering your home and creating a better atmosphere for your family. 

Jolene Engle - Jolene Engle

· A Recipe for a Thriving Marriage

In the midst of the stresses,messes, and the mundane seasons of life, it's so hard to maintain a thriving marriage. In this powerful session, Jolene gives you some valuable tips for a thriving marriage no matter what season you’re currently living in. Every marriage goes through seasons. Seasons of stress whether it’s hardship or heartaches. Seasons of exhaustion or the dreaded overwhelmed schedule. Seasons of the daily rut that life can bring. Every marriage needs intentionality to thrive during all of these seasons. Jolene takes a walk through Scripture to give you the recipe for a thriving marriage. 

Jami Balmet (Opening Session) Young Wife's Guide

· What is a Homemaker and how can I glorify God in my role at home

What does it mean to be a homemaker?To kick off this conference on homemaking, Jami opens up the discussion by taking a look at what Scripture defines as a homemaker. The position of a homemaker is not dependent on marital status or occupation. God has called all women to this important and noble position. Take a walk with us and discover what it means to be a woman who glorifies God in her home.

Jami Balmet Young Wife's Guide

· Practicing Hospitality: The Biblical Art of Serving Others

Hospitality is about so much more than entertaining. Hospitality is about opening up your home, and using the resources that God has given you, to serve others. Jami starts her session focusing on the Biblical mandate of hospitality and then focuses in practical ways you can start extending hospitality to those around you - even when you live in a small apartment, don't have a lot of money, or feel totally inadequate. Hospitality is a command for all believers to fulfill - let's go on a journey and discover how easy it can actually be to fulfill this serving opportunity from within your home!

Kristy Howard - Little Natural Cottage

· Real Life Homeschooling

What does homeschooling really look like? The sticky floors, bad attitudes, lost school supplies, laundry piles and the many other day to day issues homeschooling moms face. A lot of us struggle with expectations, finding joy in the chaos, and feeling like we're somehow inferior to other homeschooling moms (you know, the ones who surely must have it all together). In this session, Kristy dives into her honest struggles in these areas and how she's discovered purpose and freedom.

Trisha Gilkerson - http://www.intoxicatedonlife.com/

· Gluten Free101: Essential Guide for Homemakers

Gluten-free living might seem like a fad, but there are real health benefits behind this way of eating IF done correctly. Trisha gives you a brief tutorial on what the problem with gluten is(in easy to understand terms) and help you navigate transitioning your family to this way of life the healthy way! If you are curious because friends and family are gluten free and you want to understand it better - or just starting this journey yourself - Trisha is there to explain it all and make it easy to understand! 

Katie Bennett Embracing a Simpler Life

· PrioritizingTime with God

Session description coming soon.

Lisa Woodruff - Organize 365

· Organizing the many facets of mom.

The ability to nurse sick kids, get the laundry done, shuttle kids from one activity to the next and cook a mean meatloaf are all in mom's bag of tricks. Is she can find her bag. Where did Iput that bag?! Professional Organizer Lisa Woodruff will help you understand how to get organized once and for all. Organizing the many facets of mom involves learning simple systems to organize your home, paper and time!

Alina Joy Dubios - Good Old Days Farm

· Getting Your Kids Involved in Chores 


What does God’s Word have to say about chores? Is it even worth it to go through the extra work to teach your kids how to do chores? What’s the right way to go about it? Alina Joy answers all these questions and more in her session on getting kids involved in chores.Starting with Scripture and continuing into practical advice and routines,Alina Joy equips you with the tools you need to get your kiddos involved in chores and your house running smoother! 


Conference Schedule: All times are EST

October 7
11:00 - 12:00AM - Jami Balmet (Opening Session)
1:00 - 2:00pm - Kristy
3:00 - 4:00pm - Christin
5:00pm - 6:00pm - Trisha
7:00 - 8:00pm - Marlene

October 8
11:00 - 12:00AM - Dana
1:00 - 2:00pm - Katie
3:00 - 4:00pm - Lisa
5:00pm - 6:00pm - Jami (Hospitality)

October 9
11:00 - 12:00AM - Jolene 
1:00 - 2:00pm - Hilary
3:00 - 4:00pm - Marci
5:00pm - 6:00pm - AlinaJoy
**Jami will close out conference with a quick 10 - 15 minute goodbye**


Click on the photo below for more information and to register:

(Remember to register early for discount pricing and to receive over $200 in bonus resources!)


Homemaking From Scratch Conference 2014




*Just a quick note for my readers.  I will not be present live for the Facebook chat time for my session.  Jami will take my spot as my husband and I are headed to Africa for a mission trip.  I am looking forward to sharing with you all more about the trip when we return.  Please keep us in your prayers over the next couple of weeks.  Much love, Marci


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