Monday, April 7, 2014

A Work in Progress ....

"For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)

We all have a purpose -- a God-given purpose to this life that we are living -- some of find our purpose at a very early age, some of us take awhile longer and some of us are still searching. It doesn't matter what category you fall in, God is leading you in the direction that you need to be going -- maybe you're not quite ready for what He wants you to accomplish for Him. Maybe there's a few valleys that you still need to walk through, or maybe you're almost to the top of that mountain -- DON'T STOP NOW!


Are you going through a difficulty? A major trial? Keep climbing! That mountain probably seems pretty high right now, but imagine what it's going to feel like when you finally reach the top??!! The sun is going to shine a little brighter. The birds are going to sing a little louder. All the colors of nature are going to be more beautiful. Is any of that even possible? Yes, it is. 



He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Psalm 23:3-4 (NIV)


God promises to walk beside you -- to guide you, to lead you -- every step of the way. While the valleys are the hardest, toughest, most difficult things you will ever go through, God makes promises of better things to come. 

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 (NIV)

Those better things may not happen overnight, in fact, you may need to walk through a few valleys before you even see a glimmer of that "better" life. But God has given you a purpose, He will not forsake you and things will get better (it doesn't say return to "normal", but it does say that He works things out to the good). Maybe this valley you're in is a faith-growing experience, maybe it's a "learning" tool -- I can't answer what purpose it serves, but at some point, God will reveal His ultimate plan for your life? The next question becomes "Will you be ready"? "Will you be listening?"

Spend some time today with God -- in His Word, surrounded by His beautiful creations and most of all in prayer -- you want to be ready when He reveals His plan for you.

Country FarmHouse Blessings,


Monday, January 13, 2014

RED ....

RED is MY FAVORITE COLOR -- for so many reasons. It's the Color of LOVE. Ruby Ring. A Single Rose. A little Red Dress. Bing Cherries. Farmall Tractor. Strawberry Jam. Nail Polish. A Yamaha Grizzly ATV.




There are so Many Reasons to LOVE RED --- but one of the MOST important reasons is because it stands for the "American Heart Association" and the "Go Red for Women" Organization. An organization that is very true to my own heart -- Heart Disease is the number one killer of women in the United States.


https://www.goredforwomen.org/

This year's Go Red for Women Day is February 7, 2014 and it's so easy to show your support -- simply by wearing RED. But there's more ... you can encourage others to do the same. You can show support by making a donation. You can help by educating others. You can reduce your risks by changing your diet and exercise.

So MANY Reasons to LOVE RED ... Won't you join us and Show your Support on February 7. 

Country FarmHouse Blessings,



Friday, January 10, 2014

Dream ... Encourage ... Inspire ...

So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised. Hebrews 10:35-35 (NLT)

Do you ever feel that God leads us to "just the right Words"? Right when we need them? I read and needed these verses today just as I had just made the decision to close the office early (well, early for me) and work on my blog, website and a few other things that I have been neglecting lately.


Earlier this year, I made a promise to myself that I would find the time to blog more -- to really make a difference -- and to be honest, I am letting myself (and God) down lately. God has given me a VISION -- a place where He wants me to be and I need to be obedient to Him. I don't measure my success in total sales or dollars, I measure my success in helping others -- by encouraging someone, by helping someone to be beautiful (by teaching them to share their inner light so that it shines brightly and brings out their natural beauty), by inspiring someone else's dreams and most importantly, by remembering that God is in control and wants, no expects, me to obediently follow Him.

I have so many ideas written down; so many designs just waiting to "come to life" that I want to share with you all. When I am practicing obedience (and let's not forget -- no one is perfect!), I can feel more and more inspiration -- inspiration from nature, inspiration from a song, inspiration from looking at a picture. I believe that when we are walking on our God-given path, He is going to offer us more and more opportunities ... are you missing out on an important opportunity??

Country FarmHouse Blessings,

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Chili Seasoning Mix

It has been awhile and I sincerely apologize ... so let's get started "Back to Blogging" with a "Back to Basics" Recipe from the Country FarmHouse


Chili Seasoning Mix

Ingredients
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons chili powder
1 Tablespoon crushed red pepper
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons dried parsley
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon season blend pepper

Mix all ingredients together well. Store in an airtight container - a mason jar works great. I use a serving size of One Tablespoon per chili batch ... but it's really a personal preference. 


Country FarmHouse Blessings,



Thursday, September 12, 2013

Changes....

No one ever said Change was easy. Sometimes it's a lot of hard work too. BUT ... 


is undergoing some MAJOR CHANGES. And we all know that I'm not always very good about making changes, but these are God-leading changes ... which are the VERY BEST KIND of CHANGES.

I am working on clarifying my goals --- goals that will meet my vision, my mission, my dreams --- and making sure that those goals are also God-defined. For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV) * Motto: Making It Happen * Stepping out of the "safe zone" and into the "faith zone" ... Trusting God each and every step of the way!

This above statement was posted on my facebook page not too long ago. And as the saying goes, "Be Careful what you wish (or pray) for". Stepping out of the "safe zone" --- that statement seemed to tell God, "hey God, look she wants you to make her feel very uncomfortable"! NOT! In truth, though, that is what seemed to have happened.

As most of you know, I have been in a waiting period --- that has lasted almost 2 years --- a period of me waiting on God. Waiting on God to lead me in the direction that He wanted me to go. Waiting for something that would give my life a meaning -- a purpose -- again. Guess what??? I found it!!


Here's another facebook excerpt:  It is not my ability but my response to God's ability that counts. ~Corrie Ten Boom ** I am a firm believer in this quote -- I always thought my hearts desire would be something I was really, really good at, something that would use knowledge I already had and just grow it -- nope, not happening! God changed my heart while I was praying for His help. And best of all, I am loving it, this new direction, new path is wonderful. I am still so excited and can't wait to see where God leads me. Definitely gives new meaning to the thought "Impossible means I'm possible" with God's help and guidance.

I do believe that when we are praying --- you know praying for God's guidance on what WE WANT for our life --- it is during that time that God works on changing our heart. Changing our heart to what HE WANTS as our desires of the heart. 

And of course, Prim 'n Purdy has a NEW MOTTO. Although, I am open to change, if God decides that it is needed. Until then, I will walk in this path, work on my new goals and know that no matter what happens, God is loving. God is good. God has the perfect plan for me. God is always in control. God is Great!

Oh, our NEW MOTTO is Prim 'n Purdy. Strong 'n Feminine. Be the Woman God Designed YOU to Be ~ Beautiful from the inside out ~ A Purdy Lady.


Wishing you JOY and BLESSINGS,




Thursday, August 15, 2013

Living a Simple Life

This is a continuation of Passions and Dreams ... I believe that we should live our lives simple. And I am very passionate about wanting to teach others way that they can simplify their own lives. Simple can mean so many different things so let me explain what I think a "Simple Life" is all about.

Does it mean give up everything or sell everything? No. Does it mean we should all live in a cabin with no electricity, just gas generated products? No, not unless you want to do that. Does it mean we should give up our running water? Not me. 

Of course, Living Simple is going to have a different meaning depending on your circumstances too. If you are a millionaire, your idea of a Simple Life will surely be different than a person who lives paycheck to paycheck or even worse.

Now that we have the basics out of the way, let me explain my idea of A Simple Life. I believe that Living Simple is living within your means; it means thinking about a purchase instead of impulse buying. How many times have you purchased something and then a week later had doubts and maybe even a regret or two? I can honestly say that I have purchased on impulse and then wondered why I made that purchase.

If this is something you have considered doing, or are maybe considering now, you might be thinking "where do I start?" "How do I start Living Simple?" That's an easy one ... pick a room, a closet, a cabinet, etc. Take everything out -- this may seem like a lot of work, but it's the best way to start so you don't overlook anything. Start making piles: "Keep" because I use it or wear it. "Maybe" because I really like it, not sure if I can part with it or maybe it has sentimental value. "Discard" because I don't use it or wear it and never really have or it's simply worn out, doesn't fit, etc.

The Keep pile is an easy one -- you use it or wear it on a daily or when needed basis. If these Keep items are used daily, you will want them near the front so you can get to the item readily. If you use or wear it on a needed basis, for instance my canning equipment, it should be put toward the back of a closet or even in a cabinet that you are going to use for "as needed" items.

The Discard pile is another easy one -- doesn't fit, you don't use or wear it, etc. Now within this pile, I will separate into two more piles -- I didn't say this Living Simple was going to be EASY! *smiles* I make a pile of repurpose or reuse items. For instance, a tee shirt that doesn't fit can be altered to fit someone else in my family OR I can use it for fabric to make doll clothes, a quilt, etc. And the other pile is throw or give away; depending on the quality of those items. Of course, if you are not going to repurpose or reuse within a timely period, it might be best to just add that item to the give away pile.

The Maybe pile is going to be the most difficult. Here's what I personally do: I put things of sentimental value or just can't get rid of yet in a storage container -- plastic or cardboard box, whatever works best for you. Mark the container with the date that you sorted through your items -- today's date if you are going to start Living Simple today -- and you may want to "visit" this box again at a different time. Things of importance today, may not seem so important in a year or two. Now the items that you know you CANNOT part with should be put away appropriately -- maybe these are items you are saving for your children or grandchildren, mark them with a name and maybe add a letter, you just never know what tomorrow will bring. Or maybe these are items that were given to you from your great grandmother, again, mark these items in that way because the next generation may want to know "the story" that goes with that item. And so on. The items that you MUST save, should also be put away appropriately -- either in a storage container or a safe place.

After you have finished that first closet, cabinet, drawer, etc, Step Back and Admire your accomplishment. You may even feel as if a burden has been lifted from your shoulders, I know I usually do. These "empty" items are really just dead weight and space takers.

Let's move on to the next room, cabinet, closet, etc. As you get all your "give away" items in a pile, you may even find that you have so many items that are of a good quality, you can make some extra money. How? Garage Sale. Sell on eBay. Sell on Consignment. And what an even better feeling that will be *smiles*!

I have so many ideas and ways to Simplify your Life that I'm going to stop this post here with the promise to come back to it at a later date. This is probably more than enough "doing" for just one day. Well, what are you waiting for? Get Started Today --- Living a Simple Life.

Have a Beautiful Blessed Day!!

Country FarmHouse Blessings,




Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Passions and Dreams ... continued

Passions and Dreams ... As I started journaling, after praying and thinking and then praying some more, what I was MOST passionate about, I realized that (as most of you already know) I love to ENCOURAGE and INSPIRE others. I want to encourage others to READ the BIBLE. Reading the Bible is the best way I know to encourage Christians, long time Christians or even brand new believers, to grow closer to God, grow in their faith and get to know God. What better way to get to know someone than by reading their most intimate Thoughts and Words.

By encouraging others to read the Word of God, it could become one of the single most important things they do after allowing God into their heart. And what better way to learn the Truth --- the Truth that God wants / expects us to know. By reading the Bible and learning God's Truth, a long-time Christian or a brand new believer can discern between what the world wants and what God wants.

I know that finding the time to read the Bible can be difficult --- kids, well no other explanation is really needed, right??! There's always "other" things --- household chores, maybe an outside job, a busy lifestyle. Yes, I used to make all kinds of excuses too UNTIL God started waking me up at 3 am -- SERIOUSLY!! All of sudden I was able to "find" the time in the mornings to read my Bible. After a few months, of reading each and every morning, guess what?? That's right, it had become a habit and God didn't feel the need to wake me up during the night. Finding the time to read your Bible may seem to be difficult, but quite honestly, just set it up as an appointment -- you can schedule everything else from a phone call to a kids soccer practice and so on and so on.

Now that you've found the time to read your Bible, you're probably wondering WHAT you should be reading. And that's a question that I have answered many times over --- how did I get started? And it's an easy one to answer. There are thirty-one chapters in Proverbs, so take one a day. See, told you it was an easy one to answer. On the first of the month, read Proverbs 1; second day of the month, read Proverbs 2 and just continue reading. You can do this for quite a few months and by then, you may want to find a Bible study that interests you -- what do you want to learn from God? Do you want to live a more biblical life? Do you want to learn more about Jesus? His disciples? His Promises?

As you start reading your Bible, you'll find that God guides and leads you. And of course, that may lead you to WANT to CHANGE your LIFE and how you live. Then you'll find yourself wanting to learn MORE about God and what He wants / expects of each one of us. It will become a wonderful circle -- you discover things about God and then you'll want to walk with Him, become a better Christian and make positive changes to your way of living.

Today's THAT day!!! Get your Bible out, download an app, whatever it takes. Start Reading!! Encouraging others to read the Bible also goes hand in hand with my other passions -- which we will discuss in the next couple of days.

Country FarmHouse Blessings,



Monday, August 12, 2013

Passions and Dreams

Lately, I've been doing a lot of thinking ... and praying. Thinking and praying ... and waiting! What does God want me to do? What does He expect of me?

Sometimes those answers are given immediately and sometimes, as in my case, they come after spending many hours / days / weeks in prayer. I can't answer why some people can decide what God wants them to do, almost instantly. But I can talk about why I think God needed me to wait ... Wait until I found out what I was TRULY passionate about.

Looking back, at my life as a child, as an adult, as a wife, and even as a mom, I can see how I've grown -- grown in my Christian life. From having a faith-filled life, to having a "want to be walking with Christ each and every minute / second" kind of life; to want to know His Word, to want to live (as best as I possibly can) within His Word and Guidance. As I look back, I think that's what the "waiting" period was all about -- finding out / discovering WHO I AM; who I want to be and become.  The Lord replied, “Look around at the nations; look and be amazed! For I am doing something in your own day, something you wouldn't believe even if someone told you about it." Habakkuk 1:5 (NLT)

As you think about what God wants from you; about where He wants to use you and your gifts -- both spiritual gifts and your talents -- it comes down to this one basic question. WHAT ARE YOU PASSIONATE ABOUT? What reason do you want to get out of bed each and every single day? Where can you not only use your talents but also your spiritual gifts?

As I looked over some of my talents and my spiritual gifts, I realized one thing: what I wanted before is not even close to what I want now. I can remember a time, and not too long ago I should add, that I thought in order to be used by God, I needed to be famous --- famous as in being on the Oprah show, famous as in "being discovered". I have since learned and again, most of this comes from reading God's Word, is that God can use the weak. He can use the weak and not only make them stronger, but truly make them into anything that He wants them to be. He can take even the weakest talents, which can be anything from speaking in front of others to having little or no experience at something, and make those weaknesses into our strengths. Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 2 Corinthians 12:9 (NLT)

This week, God willing and time permitting, I am going to talk about what I am MOST passionate about -- what I am feeling called to do. And what I discovered and what you will be reading may surprise you because it is NOT at all where I saw myself 5, even 4, years ago.

Country FarmHouse Blessings,





Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Miracles

Do you BELIEVE in MIRACLES?? I believe in the POWER of MIRACLES ... God CAN and DOES amazing things -- some miracles are BIG and some are smaller. Some are everyday and some are once in a lifetime. I'm going to try to share this as best as I can.




Yesterday marked "the day" --- 22 months ago to "the day", my family and I suffered a HUGE loss, it was "the day" that my husband and I lost our youngest son.

FIRST some BACKGROUND, most of you know that I've been using POWER THOUGHTS. Power Thoughts are a way of changing our thinking --- renewing our mind so that we concentrate on the TRUTHS of GOD; NOT listening to the world or the devil and what they may say. Also, I've been working on PRAYING more --- I mean really praying, not just talking to God (which I still do all day long). Praying and Reading and Concentrating on the Word of God.

NOW for the MIRACLE of yesterday --- on every single day that have marked the "5th" of each month, I woke up with a migraine headache (my body's way of coping) and then I go through EACH. and EVERY. step. THOUGHT. ACTION. of THAT DAY! --- Yesterday that did NOT happen. I woke up in prayer and powerful positive thoughts, wrote the day approximately five times BEFORE I realized what yesterday was. THAT was a MIRACLE!

And we had another one on Sunday of this week --- WOW! My family and I went to a fair that we hadn't attended before. It was a smaller county fair with a grandstand show that we hadn't seen before --- truck drag races and mud bogs. It was somewhat harder, knowing that Mike (our youngest son) would have loved the atmosphere. And at one point, our youngest daughter actually had a MOMent of tears --- who wouldn't?? --- and while I was talking to her and explaining that I understood how she felt, the ONE and ONLY BUTTERFLY we saw the entire time at the fair, flew over our heads and hovered for a second or two before flying off. That kind of MIRACLE really makes you think, smile and even share a laugh.

I STAND on the PROMISES of GOD .... Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28. I know that God has a perfect plan and purpose for me --- a plan that includes using me for His Greater Good ... That's EXCITING!

Have you had any MIRACLES lately??

Country FarmHouse Blessings,

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Country FarmHouse Fresh Baked Bread

Who doesn’t LOVE homemade bread?!  This is the Easiest White Bread Recipe You Ever Tried. Your house will smell like heaven and your family will love you. This recipe was adapted from a tasty kitchen recipe for the Country FarmHouse Kitchen.

Country FarmHouse White Bread
Makes 4 Large Loaves


Ingredients

4 cups Warm Water
8 Tablespoons Sugar
8 Tablespoons Yeast
4 Tablespoons Olive Oil
4 teaspoons Salt
7 - 10 cups Flour

This recipe makes 4 large loaves.

Add sugar to 1 cup of the warm water and stir. Then dissolve yeast in the sugar water. Let the sugar/yeast mixture rest until doubled in size.

Pour oil in bowl, add sugar/yeast mixture, remaining 3 cups of water and salt.

Add flour, 2-3 cups at a time. Knead (gently massage with your hand) to make a soft, not sticky dough. TIP: You're done kneading if when you touch it, the bread doesn't stick to your finger. If it sticks to your fingers, ADD more flour. The original recipe called for 7 cups of flour, but I'll be completely honest and state that I've always used at least 9-10 cups of flour. So don't be nervous if you seem to be adding more flour.

Cut the dough into four equal pieces. Set on a greased counter top, cover with a towel and let stand for 15 minutes.


Pound each piece with a wooden spoon for 1 minute to get the air bubbles out. I roll mine with a wooden rolling pin also, just to make sure. Form into loaves and place in greased loaf pans.

Allow dough to raise until doubled in size ... again I let my dough rise until it's just a little above the top edge of the pan and I like it even better - a little lighter and very easy to cut into smaller slices when completely baked and cooled.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-45 minutes or until golden on top. Rub butter on top while it's still warm, if desired.

To store, wrap in plastic wrap and place in a zip-top bag. Best served when warm but it's also nice to share with family, friends and neighbors.

Country FarmHouse Blessings,