Hummingbirds & Homemaking

{This post contains affiliate links. If you should click through and purchase, it will not cost you any extra but it may benefit my homemaking, just-a-trifle. Thanxomuch!}

Hummingbirds & Homemaking {WholeHearted Home}

I’d really like to think that hummingbirds have something to do with homemaking in the summer months. After all, making the syrup that attracts them to the feeder just outside my kitchen window is part of my Saturday routine. So, they do have something to do with homemaking after all!!

For years we have had Ruby-throated hummingbirds come to our feeder, but this is the first year that I have had the responsibility of making the syrup each week. I have kind of enjoyed it.

Do you have a feeder?

Reasons to attract Hummingbirds

Whether you homeschool or not, your children will love hummingbirds if you take an interest in them. They are the tiniest little birds and are usually the friendliest and will often fly up close to the window or even up to you if you are wearing bright red. They might think you are a flower!!

If you homeschool, you could make a unit out of hummingbirds. You never know whether you will develop a life-time interest in one of your children. One of my daughters became very interested in birds for years after we did a unit study on birds. Hummers were her favorite.

  • They will fly right up near the window if you have a feeder hanging from the house.

  • They sit on the perch drinking the sweet syrup long enough for you to get a good look at them. They do happen to be amazing!!
  • They can be trained to sit on your finger if you are patient enough to wait with your fingers circling the feeder’s perch. Kids LOVE to do this. Mom’s usually don’t have the time. My daughter used to love doing this.

Interesting Facts About Hummingbirds

We live in the north east where the Ruby-throated Hummingbird (Archilochuscolubris….if you like sounding overly educated) visits our feeder. I have not been observant enough to know whether we have ever had another kind visit us.

Maybe I will notice as time goes on because I am much more interested in them. Why do you think I am writing about them?

Ruby-throats are inquisitive and the male is territorially aggressive. They will spend much of the day defending the feeder against intruders and even their own offspring after they are old enough to be on their own. Can you imagine guarding your house so that your children don’t visit once they grow up?!

Courtship is quick and the female raises the babies alone. We can’t get our examples of fatherhood from hummers!! Soon after fledging the nest the female treats her offspring as rivals. Can you imagine?

There are all sorts of other interesting facts about hummingbirds that can be discovered on the internet or through Bob and Martha SargentStokes Guide to Bird Behavior Audubon Society Guide to North American Birds (Eastern Region) This book was always laying around, ready to look up and identify a bird.

Hummingbirds & Homemaking

So, you are probably wondering what I think hummingbirds have to do with homemaking.

Homemaking can be rather mundane as I repeat (and so do you)the same tasks, Every. Single. Day.

I think it is important to look for things to be thankful within the mundane. Take the time to stop and smell the roses and watch the hummingbirds without letting another day slip by with an ungrateful heart.

Today I filled the hummingbird feeder again and replaced the cloudy sugar water with crystal clear sugar juice. When I forget, they fly right up to the window as if to remind me.

God cares about these energetic little birds that cannot even stop generating energy while they are resting or sleeping. He cares when they fall to the ground. He care infinitely more about you. Don’t ever forget that!!

Recipe for Hummingbird Sugar-Water

  • 1 cup white sugar-water
  • 4 cups water
  • Mix both ingredients in a pot
  • Heat for a couple minutes until the sugar dissolves
  • Cool on counter or in fridge
  • Replace old sugar-water weekly
  • (Do not use the red-sugar-water as it is not good for hummers)

Have you rested from your housework long enough to drink in God’s blessings? Do you enjoy hummingbirds or some other gift from God in nature?

25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?

26 Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?” ~Matthew 6:25-26~

Resource: Hummingbirds.net http://www.hummingbirds.net/rubythroated.html

Photo Credit: WholeHearted Home/Judith Kowles

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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Jesus Only: Himself {A. B. Simpson Series}

Jesus Only Himself {A. B. Simpson} - {WholeHearted Home}

Do you have Jesus only? Himself?

Albert Benjamin Simpson lived from 1843-1919 and is a man that we all should know about. Throughout all his preaching and the 70 books he wrote, permeates his relationship with Jesus, Himself as our all in all.

How often do you hear a sermon where somehow it ends and the name of Jesus is hardly mentioned? The sermon was excellent and you learned so much that you can apply to your heart about ‘sanctification’ or ‘faith’?

I want to speak to you about Jesus. It’s not whether you have faith or are sanctified because no matter how much you ‘work up’ your faith or sanctification, without Jesus, you have nothing at all.

Try as you might to “get hold” of holiness or a blessing might bring you to great holiness and blessings but only outwardly where others can see. We need to get hold of Jesus only and stop trying to be holy or sanctified and focus only on Himself because it is only through Jesus we are wholly-sanctified-filled-with-faith-believers-receiving the blessing.

Sanctified. I Thought I Had “It”

I prayed a long time to get sanctified, and sometimes I thought I had it. On one occasion I felt something, and held on with a desperate grip for fear I should lose it, and kept awake the whole night fearing ‘it’ would go, and of course, ‘it’ went with the next sensation and the next mood. Of course, I lost ‘it’ because I did not hold on to Him. I had been taking a little water from the reservoir, when I might have all the time received from Him fullness through open channels. I went to meetings and heard people speak of joy. I even thought I had the joy, but I did not keep it because I had not Himself as my joy. As last He said to me – Oh so tenderly – “My child, just take Me, and let Me be in you the constant supply of all this, Myself.” And when at last I got my eye off my sanctification, and my experience of it, and just placed them on the Christ in me, I found, instead of an experience, the Christ larger than the moment’s need, the Christ that had all that I should ever need who was given to me at once, and for ever! And when I thus saw Him, it was such rest; it was all right, and right for ever!  I had not only what I could hold that little hour, but what it will be a million years afterwards, when we shall “shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of our Father.” (Matthew 13:43), and have “all the fullness of God.” ~by A. B. Simpson~

HIMSELF

by A. B. Simpson

Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord;
Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word.
Once His gifts I wanted, Now the Giver own;
Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone.

Once ’twas painful trying, Now ’tis perfect trust;
Once a half salvation, Now the uttermost.
Once ’twas ceaseless holding, Now He holds me fast;
Once ’twas constant drifting, Now my anchor’s cast.

Once ’twas busy planning, Now ’tis trustful prayer;
Once ’twas anxious caring, Now He has the care.
Once ’twas what I wanted, Now what Jesus says;
Once ’twas constant asking, Now ’tis ceaseless praise.

Once it was my working, His it hence shall be;
Once I tried to use Him, Now He uses me.
Once the power I wanted, Now the Mighty One;
Once for self I labored, Now for Him alone.

Once I hoped in Jesus, Now I know He’s mine;
Once my lamps were dying, Now they brightly shine.
Once for death I waited, Now His coming hail;
And my hopes are anchored, Safe within the vail.


 

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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A Well-Planned Day Planner

A Well-Planned Day Planner {WholeHearted Home}

I am excited to offer a selection of “A Well-Planned Day Planners” from HEDUA ~ Home Educating Family Association. Having one of these planners will help you wholeheartedly serve your husband, children, friends and neighbors through your home, right where you are.

(Just remember that these are affiliate links and I earn a small commission. Just thought you should know,)

Why am I so excited? Because I just received my planners in the mail and I just LOVE them!! I have just so wanted to tell you about it!!

I have never had a planner that was set up so perfectly before. Too often I have to print off the pages myself. That works too, but I have been trying out their planners and I have been so very impressed.

I love looking over planners, so I would know.

Now, I know that each woman has her own idea of what planner will work for her situation. I have been trying out a home management system that prints out into a 3-Ring Binder. Problem is, that if you are a busy mom and on the ‘go’, you might do better with one already printed out.

I have HEDUA’s “On the Go: A Well-Planned Day Planner” by Rebecca Scarlatta Keliher and “My Blog Plan” by Rebecca Scarlatta Keliher.  I love them both!!

If you homeschool, there is a planner for you!!

Click through the graphics below and check out the planners. While you are at the HEDUA website, brouse around and see what they have to offer. I just bought a wonderful 15 month calendar for $0.99 with my order!!

These were not a huge expense for me and I like that since finances can be an issue!! Just know, that I am an affiliate for HEDUA and should you choose to order from them, I will receive a commission which will help keep my blog going.

Just click on the image to purchase the item.

Featured Promotion: Add a Wall Calendar for Just $.99 with Planner Purchase!

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Purchase the Well Planned Day Family Homeschool Planner  – or - My Blog Plan and add a Well Planned Day Wall Calendar for just $.99!

I am a planner junkie and in the past year I have looked over 4 or 5 systems for home, blog, or homeschool management. So when I say a planner is awesome, it is!!

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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Lessons making lemonade

Every Thursday, a group of five bloggers take turns writing for our Blessed At Home on-going series. This week, I am so excited to share this post from Kate, who blogs over at Teaching What Is Good.

Sometimes as bloggers we become overcommitted and must scale down our involvements. That is what Kate must do in order to better serve her family, blog community, and to work on her latest book. I know I’ll miss her presence here at WholeHearted Home and so will many readers. Thank you so much Kate for your faithful service to the Lord here in my corner of the internet. God bless you and see you around in the blogosphere.

We are focusing on ‘anything summer’ during June and July and hope what is shared  will encourage, equip, and bless you in your calling as homemakers and godly women at home.

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“When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.”

This is a saying that goes back to 1927 (apparently). When things are not going really well, we should do what we can to make the best of it. Good advice.

All the days of the afflicted are bad,
But a cheerful heart has a continual feast. Prov 15:15

Lessons from lemonade for Blessed at Home

I made fresh squeezed lemonade for the first time today. Frankly it has always intimidated me. The steps are:

  • mix sugar and water and heat on a stove to boiling and stir until sugar completely dissolves
  • refrigerate until ready to use
  • squeeze about 10 lemons to get 1 1/2 c of lemon juice, sifting out the seeds but leaving in the pulp
  • mix simple syrup and ice
  • add lemon juice and water
  • stir

It was wonderful, actually. But did you notice that change was called for every step of the way? Heat was applied, even to the point of changing the physical nature of elements. Then squeezing and stirring.

The Lord got my attention in the similarities between making lemonade and living the Christian life.

He takes our lives, our failed, sinful, rebellious lives and, at salvation, He makes us new. But as we continue to live out our lives, we still are often living as if we were the same old person. We don’t live in the reality of who we now are in Christ. And this is where God steps in to make lemonade with our lives.

He turns up the heat so that we MUST change. It’s uncomfortable (often revealing the gunk we have hidden in our hearts) and even painful at times. But this is only part of the journey of sanctification. He continues to squeeze and sift and so that we resemble our old self, less and less. Then He adds back in the fullness of His Spirit to give us a richer and more blessed walk with Him.

And He spends the rest of our lives stirring, continuing to keep us moving according to His ways and His purposes; never letting us get settled and stagnant.

The next time you make lemonade this summer, think about what God is doing in YOUR life to transform you more fully into the image of His Son. Where is He turning up the heat? Are you allowing the fullness of His Spirit to fill you? Are you letting the Living Waters fill you and stir you to let Him shine out from you?

Who would have guessed that making lemonade was such a lesson in faith?

(image courtesy of dusky/freedigitalphtos.net)

5 Tips for Clearing Information Overload + WholeHearted Wednesday #101

5 Tips to Clear Information OverloadYou are living in a society that is doing more and more on electronic devices. You may not be reading online from a desktop computer as they are becoming outdated fast. You might be reading this from your i-phone or tablet while you’re on the ‘go’ or even while sitting at a pool or beach.

Times have changed.

Everything is on the computer both online and offline. You might pay your bills online, read a book on an electronic device, you might even read your Bible online. On the other hand, you might have forgotten to read your Bible because you checked into Facebook before getting out of bed!!

In the course of the past week, I have read many posts, interacted on Facebook, Google +, and Pinterest. I read an e-book twice and learned many new technical skills, became frustrated at the technical skills I don’t yet possess, and basically went into information overload today!!

Have you experienced information overload?

What course of action did you take?

Take this test to see if you’ve reached overload:

Information Overload Test (by Judith Kowles)

Tally up your points. 1 point for each “yes”

  • 1-5 that you answered “yes” – you have good computer coping skills!! What is your secret? Share in the comments as we ALL want to know!!
  • 5-10 “yes’es” - Not too bad. You are balancing your computer time with offline time fairly well. Tell us how in the comments.
  • 11-15 “yes’es” – You need some help!! My “5 Tips for Clearing Information Overload” will help you.
  • 16-21 “yes’es” - YOU have a problem!! Get off the computer RIGHT NOW and go to the park, pool, beach, river, and R-E-L-A-X and CLEARLY you have information overload!! Read my 5 Tips!!
  1. Do you go to Facebook (or one of your other social media platforms) first thing in the morning before making your bed or taking a shower?
  2. Do you start scrolling down through your newsfeed on Facebook and forget why you got online in the first place?
  3. On Facebook, do you feel obligated to listen to every single music or video clip even though you think they are ridiculous?
  4. Do you have 6-8 email accounts that are jam-packed with pending or unanswered mail? (I have 5 email accounts, so this is not unrealistic.)
  5. When you open your inbox, do you become anxious with “information overload” before you even open the email?
  6. Do you lose track of time on Twitter, Google +, Facebook, or Pinterest as you stress over the avalanche of twaddle?
  7. Do you find yourself compulsively eating junk food while reading online?
  8. Are you becoming sadly behind on your dishes, paper-clutter, laundry, and undone projects, as you spend increasing amounts of time online?
  9. Are you irritable with your husband and children? Snappy? Can’t look away from the screen when they talk to you?
  10. Are you playing Facebook games?
  11. Do you become frustrated from the electronic information you need to process daily?
  12. Do you become overwhelmed because you can’t get to the blogs or e-books you’d really prefer to process?
  13. Do you sit at your computer for more than an hour without getting up?
  14. Do you constantly check into your social media accounts and email (even in the bathroom) because you are afraid you’ll get behind?
  15. Are you subscribed to more blogs than you can possibly read and you feel bad when you finally delete them?
  16. Has reading your Bible become dull and so boring that you tire after reading 2-3 verses?
  17. Before making a decision, do you check with your online friends first before asking God for wisdom?
  18. Do you read so many posts that you are skimming and hardly reading them, feeling like you have to comment, “Like” and “+1″ all those in your niche?
  19. Is your Kindle app full of books you will never have time to read because you are inundated with the ever-flowing avalanche of electronic information??
  20. Did you forget to hydrate with 8 glasses of water? Electronic devices dehydrate you. Did you realize that?
  21. When you make it to the end of your day, do you feel really guilty that too much time was wasted online and you didn’t live real life?

Compared to 20 years ago, we are spending more and more time on the computer. In many ways that is unavoidable as banking, filing systems like Evernote, and online businesses are all housed within the screen.

The problem is that we are not balancing our time. We are accountable to God for how we are spending our time; someday we will give an answer for our motives and use of it.

Many women are spending too much time on social media and are neglecting their time alone with God; which then plays out in their relationship with their husband and children.

5 Tips to Clear Information Overload (Plus Test)

5 Tips to Clear Information Overload

  1. Do not feel bad for not reading every email and blog post word for word. You will never get “caught up” so don’t bother trying.
  2. Zero out ALL email accounts each night before closing out your day. Process all emails into filters, or read them, then archive what you have finished and delete the rest.
  3. Set time limits for each task you do. Don’t allow yourself to lose track of time.
  4. Know when to close your laptop and get outside. When you get to the point that you can no longer concentrate or think, you have reached information overload and you need to clear your head. Today, I reached that point and I drove 3 miles to the river and took a walk. The fresh 82F heat was refreshing and cleared my information overload, so that I was able to come home and make a delicious supper and get back to writing.
  5. Know when you need to scale back on social media and other online commitments. Maybe you need to write less or take a blogging break!!
 Photo Credit

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You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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How to Share Chores with Children

“And Moses’ father in law said unto him, “The thing that thou doest is not good. Thou wilt surely wear away, both thou, and this people that is with thee: for this thing is to heavy for thee; thou art not able to perform it thyself alone.” Exodus 18:17-18

How To Share Chores With Children {WholeHearted Home}

It amazes me how we can look to the Bible for direction on how to go about getting our chores done. Whether you work out-of-the-home, homeschool your children, or work-from-home, this verse gives careful instructions to Moses on how to share his work responsibilities. We can apply this great advice to our own situation.

You can’t be everywhere all at once and neither can you do all the things that you would like to do.  Many women struggle with the need to get everything done. I know I do, and is it true that you do too?

How to Share Chores with Children

Trying to be all things to all people puts us on the fast track to burn out.  We need to share our chores.

Jethro, was the father-in-law of Moses. He saw that Moses was getting more and more overwhelmed and wearied as he directed and guided the Israelites. They would come to him with disagreements seeking solutions. There were many many Israelites and Jethro made a wise suggestion.

He suggested that the people would be divided up into smaller groups with captains over them to make decisions over the disputes. Moses would only be consulted for the bigger issues that couldn’t be solved.

Why didn’t us mothers think about this?!

I used to have a bunch of children, wild and energetic from sunup to sundown. Some days they were like a dam ready to burst.

So, why not delegate chores with your children and harness their energy?

How to Delegate the Chores

Starting with even a two or three year old, divide up the chores with each of your children.

  1. Make a list of chores that your children can learn to do
  2. Take that list and divide it up with each child
  3. Now, take each child’s list and spread it out for the week allowing for chores that will be repeated each day.
  4. Find a system to record each child’s chore list

Ideas for Chore Charts

If you think your child will remember WHAT chores he/she has and WHICH days to do them, and WHERE to do them, YOU HAVE ANOTHER ‘THINK’ COMING!!

Here are some tried and true methods for Chore Charts. Remember, without a chore chart, your dear child is likely to say, “You never told him he had to do that chore!!”

  • A computer generated by YOU chore chart with a place to check-off when it’s done
  • A small white board (8″ X 10″) for each child on the wall or fridge. You can list the chores and easily change them up. Some people change the chores each week.
  • A Clip Board hanging on the wall for each child that holds the chore chart.
  • Purchase a chore system and use it – there are many to choose from

Just Remember

Delegation helped Moses and was the wisest thing for him to do. Stop thinking that you as a mother can possibly do it all. You will become ‘weary in well-doing’ just like Moses!!

Let your children help.

Do you delegate your household chores and let your children help?

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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All For Jesus: Revival with A. B. Simpson

All for Jesus Revival with A. B. Simpson {WholeHearted Home}

Would you give your all for Jesus?

In the mid 1890′s in the Christian Missionary Alliance, founded by A.B. Simpson, a call went out to members to donate their gold rings, watches, and other gold possessions to missions. In return, they would receive a metal ring and a gunmetal watch. It was in this way that thousands of dollars was raised for missions.

As I read this, I was totally amazed. I don’t know anyone who would give up their possessions for missions like this today. For the most part, it seems that missions is often placed on the back burner.

Are we willing to give our ‘all for Jesus’ no matter what that would be in our life?

We cling on to our material possessions but we also cling to our very lives and are not willing to give our all for Jesus.

The Burden of Evangelism in the Faithful

Do we feel that all people groups have been reached?

Why are we so complacent about missions these days?

Week after week can go by without mention of missions in our churches.

When I was growing up I remember a HUGE thermometer that measured pledges in raising money for missions. We don’t pledge our life to the Lord anymore let alone pledge our precious money for those serving Christ overseas.

There was a day when the ‘burden of evangelism’ was heavy on the hearts of the faithful.

“Gold-for-Iron for Jesus? What Are We Laying at Our Master’s Feet?

O Holy Ghost, Thy people move,
Baptize their hearts with faith and love,
And consecrate their gold.
At Jesus’ feet their millions pour,
And all their ranks unite once more.

For some, giving gold-for-iron-for Jesus would mean that they would consecrate their life for service as a pastor or overseas missionary. For others it would mean that they would sacrifice their money and time in prayer support for those serving Jesus elsewhere across the globe.

Are you giving gold-for-iron-for Jesus? What are you laying at your Master’s feet?

 

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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Why Planting a Garden is Beneficial for a Strong Heart

Planting a Garden is Beneficial for a Strong Heart {WholeHearted Home}

Planting a garden is beneficial for a strong heart in more ways than you can imagine.

Do you grow a garden?

Nothing compares to a juicy vine-ripened tomato from your own backyard.

You might not have realized why planting a garden is beneficial for a strong heart.

This might come as a surprise to you but it is never too late to start doing something beneficial. The sooner you add a healthy habit the better.

Doing squats and planks would seem beneficial for your heart, and they are. Gardening just doesn’t seem hard enough physically to be exercise. So, why is it beneficial?

4 Benefits Why Planting a Garden is Beneficial

Besides providing healthy veggies, here are four benefits that make it worth your while:

  1. Getting outside in the fresh air and sunshine

  2. Sinking your fingers down in the hot soil reduces stress and gets your blood moving

  3. Whether you kneel, squat, or bend, gardening keeps you limber

  4. Being outside in the warmth elevates your mood.

When you are at a desk many hours in your day or just in the everyday grind of raising children, there is something satisfying about creating something that’s really beautiful.

Reasons Why Planting a Garden is Beneficial for Your Heart

I have gardened since I was in my twenties and have successfully grown veggies, herbs, and flowers.

It never occurred to me that it’s beneficial for a strong heart.

Do you garden for pleasure? You may not have realized how good gardening is for your health.

Did You Know?

  • Gardening is as good for you as an aerobics class

  • Turning the compost pile provides a decent amount of exercise

  • Basic yard care like mowing the lawn or raking are good ways to get exercise

  • Gardening is calming and is known to reduce high blood pressure

  • Weeding burns as many calories as using a power mower

  • Gardening provides as much exercise as a trip to the gym. Now who has time for that?!

If you have been gardening all along you will have the benefits of a strong heart.

If you are young, get off your i-phone or computer for 30 minutes a day and start gardening.

No matter how young you are, a sedentary lifestyle doesn’t burn calories and common sense tells you it isn’t beneficial for your heart

Did You Know that God Thinks Planting a Garden is Beneficial for a Strong Heart?

The Bible often talks about planting, sowing and reaping. Do you know the story about ‘The Parable of the Sower?” The seed is sown and some fell by the wayside, some on the rocks, some in the thorns, and some on good ground. This story is describing the heart condition of the hearers of this parable.

Although it is beneficial to have a strong heart so we stand a better chance of living healthily, it is far more important that we have a strong spiritual heart.

For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.” ~2 Corinthians 4:16~

Planting a garden is beneficial to having a strong physical heart, but renewing our inward man day by day is the exercise which will build the muscles of our spiritual heart.

Spending time each day in God’s Word and in prayer communing with Jesus will build your heart muscles so that you have good courage and this will strengthen your heart.

Wait on the LORD: be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: wait, I say, on the LORD.” ~Psalm 27:14~

Did you plant a garden this year? Are you strengthening your spiritual heart through renewing your inward man (your heart) day by day?

Photo Credit

You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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4 Fun Indoor Toddler Activities When Summer is Too Hot

Every Thursday, a group of five bloggers take turns writing for our Blessed At Home on-going series. This week, I am so excited to share this post from Rosilind who blogs over at A Little R & R.

We are focusing on ‘anything summer’ during June and July and hope what is shared  will encourage, equip, and bless you in your calling as homemakers and godly women at home.

4 Fun Indoor Toddler Activities When Summer is Too Hot  {Blessed At Home for WholeHearted Home}

I don’t know if this happens where you live, but I live near the Mediterranean Sea and the climate here is pretty hot and humid in the summer time. Often the combination of the two makes it dangerous to be outside, especially in areas where there is little shade…

…which would be our yard, for example.

Thus, our outdoor time is generally limited to a couple of hours in the evening.

It also means I have to be extra-creative so that our children don’t spend all day watching cartoons.

Here are 4 fun indoor activities my toddlers like to do when summer is too hot.

1. Put on concerts.

My kids love music. I mean they really, really love music. My 4 year old will spend copious amounts of time watching drum instruction videos while “practicing” at his toy drum set. This kid is serious. So, mama plays the piano, little brother dances, “tata” (daddy) plays the guitar and we hold concerts. They love it. They could literally do this all day long.

2. Make movies.

What kid doesn’t like to see himself in a picture or in a home movie? Sometimes I just turn on the built-in camera on my laptop and let them be goofy. It’s so much fun watching them watch themselves on the screen.

3. Build forts.

My kids love it when I drag out all of our spare pillows and bedding and let them make forts in the living room. You can fill the fort with toys – or better yet, books. Turn out the lights and give them flashlights to play with – it is endless fun.

4. Take baths.

This is one thing my kids absolutely love. I told my husband not long ago that I’m almost positive that I gave birth to fish. My kids love bath time. And it’s a perfect activity for summer because it keeps them cool and cleans them off at the same time. During the summer months we usually bathe our children at least every other day – sometimes every day, depending on how hot it is.  Fill the tub and give them lots of toys to play with. You can even give them fun water toys like cups and spoons, strainers and sieves.

There are many fun things you can do to make those extra-hot summer months fun and entertaining when it’s too hot to go outside. Turn off the TV and get creative.

What are some fun summer activities that your toddlers enjoy? Join in the conversation and let’s swap ideas!

 

5 Tips for Optimizing and Organizing Your Pinterest Boards + WholeHearted Wednesday #100 + Giveaway

5 Tips for Optimizing & Organizing Your Pinterest Boards {WholeHearted Home}

(I must tell you that there are some affiliates within this post. Thank you for supporting my blog)

I used to go on Pinterest about once a week when I had the time to relax and I would spend about half-an-hour scrolling down through the attractive pictures pinning randomly to my boards. That was before I learned the importance of optimizing and organizing my Pinterest boards.

In whatever way you interact with Pinterest: as a mom pinning recipes and ideas for homemaking, as a blogger promoting your posts, as an online or offline business owner, it is beneficial for you to optimize and organize your Pinterest boards.

1. Where Oh Where is That Pin?

Pinning that awesome graphic is so you can find it later and do it, right? Pinterest is a paperless bulletin board that we fill with a collection of ideas. It effortlessly eliminates that messy stack of paper scraps lost within the bills, junk mail, your kid’s schoolwork and coupons you’ll never use.

After a year or two of Pinning (ok, just a month) your pin is lost in a slew of boards and you can’t remember where you pinned it!

Sound familiar?

Ever lost sleep over a Pin?

We are going to solve that problem!

2. Rename those Cutesy Boards for Optimization

Most of my boards have cutesy names that will never be found on a Pinterest search. So what’s the sense?!

SEO is just as important on Pinterest as it is in blogging.

If you don’t blog, don’t run away because you want more followers too and organizing your boards will simplify your time on Pinterest. Believe me it will!!

SEO stands for Search Engine Optimization. Without realizing it you have learned to use ‘keywords’ every time you search for something on Google. You’ve learned because if the words you type into the search bar do not bring results you try again with a more specific word or phrase.

Choose titles for your boards that folks will type into a Pinterest search. That will optimize your boards and bring in more “Likes” and “Follows” and we all love a growing community.

I am gradually changing up my board titles to reflect optimization which will help pinners to find my graphics.

3. Organize Like Boards Together

There are two ways to organize your boards. You can alphabetize your boards or put the most popular ones at the top where they are more visible.

Right now, I have grouped ‘like’ boards together with the most popular ones at the top.

I still have a LOT of tweaking to do as I optimize and organize for my own ease in finding that one cookie recipe.

It is easier for both you and me to find that needle in the Pinterest-stack.

4. Group Collaborative Boards Together

I have group collaborative boards on my Pinterest account. In case you are confused, a group collaborative board is a board where multiple pinners can pin on the same board.

Folks can follow these boards without being able to pin to them. Exposure is increased as many of these boards tend to have a huge following.

5. Make Attractive Cover Pin on Each Board

You can choose a board cover and like anything Pinterest, you can make it attractive to-the-eye. The easiest way to do this is to pick a favorite pin and select it for the cover.

There is always a better way to do something and Diane over at Vintage Zest shares “How To Make cute Pinterest Cover Boards” that take the cake!!

Leigh Anne over at Houseology wrote another fantastic post on Pinterest and referred to Diane’s post (above).

As the conversation goes in the blogosphere, I had already chosen my subtitles and written the intro to this post. Great minds think alike and Pinterest is where it is “at” socially speaking.

Why Should You Optimize and Organize Your Pinterest Boards?

I intend and choose to do everything to the glory and furtherance of the Kingdom of  God. I want to do everything with all my might.

Many of my posts are devotionals and others still reflect my faith-based views of serving my family in my home as God’s calling on my life. Pinterest is a means to promote my blog posts and in turn, I love promoting other bloggers in my nitch.

Optimizing and organizing your boards attracts others to your boards and then maybe they will have a scripture graphic or biblically based post scroll through their feed inviting them to consider a personal relationship with God.

Do your Pinterest boards need a major tweaking or are you set-to-go? Have you been taking advantage of the opportunity Pinterest has for sharing Christ?

Photo Credit

Pinterest & Blogging Series

  1. Pinspiration for Pinning Images on Pinterest
  2. Preparing a Pinteresting Pinnable Image for a Linkup Party
  3. How to Add a Pinterest Follow Widget for Word Press
  4. 6 Tips for Pinterest Image Optimization for Bloggers
  5. How You Get Followers on Pinterest
  6. Optimizing and Organizing Your Pinterest Boards

 

WholeHearted Wednesday #100 Linkup

WOWZERS!!!! It is Time to Celebrate!!

I want to thank each and every one of you for faithfully linking up with me for the past two years!! There are so many of you who come by each week and many who have stopped by now and then. The credit all goes to the Lord Jesus Christ for making WholeHearted Home a place of ministry and encouragement.

Have YOU been featured? If so, share this graphic on Pinterest, Facebook, Google +, your blog, and anywhere else that you frequent.

WholeHearted Wednesday #100

1. Strut Your Mutt {Sharon Sharing God} - Sharon did it again and got the MOST VIEWS!! I think it is her  title that peeks your interest. What do you think? Don’t you just want to hop on over and read her post?

2. 5 Sure Ways to Manage Your Home {by Naomi: What Joy Is Mine} - Naomi wrote a very thorough and helpful post on managing your home. Do you have trouble balancing homemaking? Visit Naomi and see what she shares with you today.

3. Running on Empty {by Judith’s Dad – Anthony Bollback for Missional Call} - Find out what the most important aspect of our lives is. Why do you run on empty in your ministry? Please stop over to Rosilind Jukic’s blog, Missional Call and read my Dad’s last post. My dad, Anthony Bollback is a writer who has written 6 children’s books and at least 4 books for adults based in China. He is amazing!! You can pray for him as his eyes have suddenly gotten much worse making it impossible for him to continue writing his newsletter, China Clippings, that goes out to over 4000 subscribers!! At almost 92, he doesn’t seem any different to me than he was at 42!! Next month, my parents will celebrate 71 years of marriage. See, I  told you he was amazing…now stop over and read his post over at Missional Call where he has been a contributor.

Now for the 5 Prize Giveaway!!

I have a very special bloggie-friend, Roslind Jukic from A Little R & R or Missional Call who offered to give ONE copy of her wonderful book, 14 Days of Agape away to celebrate my 100th WholeHearted Wednesday Linkup Party.

I have 14 Days of Agape on my Nook and really enjoyed reading it and found it gave me spiritual encouragement and challenged me to grow in Christ.

You may enter to win 14 Days of Agape but if you don’t want to wait, or missed the Giveaway, you may purchase the book through WholeHearted Home by clicking on the book’s graphic.

14 Days of Agape $2.99 on Kindle or in PDF  

Is the church effective in showing the love of God to each other and the world at large? Does she really understand what it means to love – really love? 14 Days of Agape is my journey through 1 Corinthians 13 from the perspective of the local church and how it relates to our brothers and sisters in Christ. Join me on my journey, verse by verse, as we learn to truly love the body of Christ God’s way!

14-Days-of-Agape

 

I appreciate you so much that I am ALSO giving away THREE copies of Climbing by Rosilind Goforth, missionary to China. This is a very special book that amazingly applies to my walk with the Lord today. In it, Rosilind Goforth shares her side of the missionary experiences with her husband, Jonathan Goforth of China. You will be so encouraged by this book!! So even if you never heard of the Goforths before, enter the Giveaway to win this book. You have quite the chance with THREE WINNERS for this book!!

If you just simply can’t wait to have Climbing I totally understand!! In that case, click the book below.

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Then, the 5th winner of my Giveaway will receive a beautiful Lilla Rose Flexi Clip!

Visit my Lilla Rose website to view all of the beautiful hair jewelry available. You’ll be glad that you did!!

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You Might Find Me Visiting: Monday: Hear It on Sunday, Use It on Monday, Making Your Home Sing Monday, Modest Monday, Mama Moment Mondays, Monday Musings, Living Proverbs 31 Linkup, MMM Linkup, MM&M Monday Linkup Tuesday: Domestically Divine Tuesday, Titus 2 Tuesday, Unite, Titus2sday, Women Helping Women Wednesday: Homemaking Wednesdays, Winsome Wednesdays, A Little R & R Wednesdays, Wedded Wednesdays, Wisdom Wednesday, A Wise Woman Builds Her House Thursday: Thrive @ Home, Thriving Thursdays, Hearts 4 Home Thursdays, Hearts for Home Blog Hop Friday: Faith Filled Fridays, Faithful Friday, Heart-Filled Fridays, Fellowship Fridays You may find me on: Twitter, Facebook, Google +, Pinterest, or Bloglovin

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