Spring Back to Winter

We’ve had quite the week. From the tornado sirens going off Monday night when a strong storm was in our county capable of producing a tornado to snow today. Yep. So I have to erase my words on no more down coat for this season. I’ve had to wear it twice lately. The flowering trees burst forth this past week due to our lovely temperatures, but with the cold and snow, we’re bidding them a short good-bye.

I’m so thankful for our Lord who creates times and seasons. What a beautiful reminder that the Lord supplies our every need. Psalm 146:15-16: “The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season. Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.”

Watch for a post soon with Benjamin’s newborn photos. I can’t wait to share. He’s simply adorable.

Love,
Sarah

Monday the girls and aunts enjoyed a walk and the beautiful flowering trees.
Ellie

Content in Christ – Debt Free House – Part 1

We are excited when we hear stories of young men who have committed themselves to debt-free living and then are able to purchase their first home debt free. That is the theme of our book Buying a House Debt Free. We are delighted to share this story with you about a young man who read that book and was inspired. Our hope is that his story will inspire you and your children.

Our 2nd born son, Mark, began courting last October. The courtship is going well, and he and the young lady he is courting are ready to get engaged once he has purchased a house.  

Mark lives at home and is an air conditioning mechanic working on commercial refrigeration in Jacksonville. We live in a small rural community north of Jacksonville.

Mark has saved a significant amount of money but not near enough to buy a new house or buy a piece of land with the intent to build. 

He remained committed that he would pay cash for the best deal he could find. We did much praying and looking and helped him look. The Florida real estate market is such that prices are typically overpriced. n Mark’s case, this meant the best he could find was a used mobile home on a couple of acres.

We looked at nothing but HUD foreclosures in Nassau County (north and west of Jacksonville). In some cases, these were 20 to 30 miles from our residence. Mark has great building skills and helped me build a 2-story addition in 2011, so gutting and fixing a foundation home or mobile home was not beyond his skill level.

This story will be continued in another blog post.

“It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth” (Lamentations 3:27).

Polishing Wood Cabinets

If you have followed our blog for long, you know that periodically we polish the wood cabinets in our home. Several years ago, when we remodeled the home that Christopher and Anna Marie now own, we asked the lady from the cabinet making company, how to keep the oak cabinets in good condition.

She told us three things:

  • Dry hands before opening cupboard doors.
  • Use the handles. I thought we always used the handles, but she was right. When we watched ourselves we seldom did. We went for the bottom of the cabinet door rather than holding on to the handle.
  • Polish the cabinets yearly using Guardsmen Polish (that’s our affiliate link to Amazon where you can purchase it: you can read our affiliate disclosure here.)
Mary
Anna

We haven’t managed yearly cabinet polishing, but we do get around to it regularly. There were a couple of years when I expressed my inability to find cabinet-polishing time to Steve. He took a Saturday morning, and we all polished cabinets together,  finishing the project in short order.

My normal cabinet polishing plan is 1/2 hour a day until it is finished. You all know how much I love the power of 30 minutes a day! Several weeks ago, I started into that, and I was planning to do it myself, but Anna and Mary said they wanted to rearrange their schedules temporarily to help. With their help, obviously, the job took 1/3 of the time, and we greatly enjoyed our fellowship.

I must also say that I am blessed beyond measure to have girls who will volunteer to help me with a project. You young moms are planting now in your children’s lives, and the fruit is coming later. I know there are days when you can’t imagine that a child would choose to help without being asked, but I can encourage you it is coming!

If you plant the seeds of entertainment and self serving in your children’s lives, however, I think you will be disappointed with the fruit in their adult lives. On the other hand, If you persevere in teaching your children there is joy in serving and fellowship in working side by side, I am sure you will be delighted by the fruit in their adult lives.

Trusting in Jesus,
Teri

“The soul of the sluggard desireth, and hath nothing:
but the soul of the diligent shall be made fat.” Proverbs 13:4

Baby Benjamin

With the dawning of March, we’re still rejoicing in the blessing of Benjamin’s arrival. But even without looking at the calendar, I know what this month holds. So while we rejoice in Benjamin, we also remember sweet Susannah who was only with us for three days. I’ll share more on her birthday in two weeks. Through good times and hard times, God is absolutely faithful! The Psalmist paints a beautiful picture of God’s mercy:: “For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.”

I realized I actually have pictures of each person in our immediate family holding Benjamin for the first time! I’m hoping to do a newborn photo session with BJ soon, so I’ll share when I can.

Love,
Sarah

Dad and Benjamin Steven
Mom with her newest and two oldest grandchildren
Sarah (me) + Benjamin
John + Benjamin
Anna, the faithful babysitter, and little Benjamin
Jesse and Benjamin
Mary and the little snuggle bug
Cuteness all wrapped up
A little smile

“Yea, in the way of thy judgments, O Lord, have
we waited for thee; the desire of our soul is
to thy name, and to the remembrance of thee.”
Isaiah 26:8

Hope for the Hopeless

I think the following story illustrates the great need for the information Managers of Their Homes and Managers of Their Chores contains. I was that struggling mom from this story at one time, trying to keep up and totally discouraged by it all. These books not only give hope to moms through direction and instruction, but they work in the real-life trenches of being a mommy.

“My name is Ryan. My husband and I have been married for nearly 10 years. For all 10 years, I have not been the best in the housewife department. When our three kids (who are homeschooled) came along, the house fell in disarray. I have cried and tried my best. I prayed for guidance because clearly I was missing something. After 10 years of looking, crying and praying I think I have found the guidance I have been longing for in your Managers books.

I have attempted to put together many schedules over the years, but they never work past the third week. I am just in awe I have finally found what I have looked for for so many years.

My mom was a single parent who worked many jobs. I had no idea or training on how to do the mom/housewife thing. I was pretty depressed recently over it. I prayed to God for help and guidance.

Then today while doing my online grocery shopping I saw I had a free pass for an audible book by Michael Duggar. In that book she mentioned y’all. I paused the book, looked up the website and read … then cried. I cannot tell you grateful I am.”

The end of Ryan’s story isn’t yet written, but I am confident there’s going to be a transformation in this young mommy’s life, in her family’s lives, and in her home. I am as excited as she is for the next chapter to be written.

Trusting in Jesus,
Teri

“But I will hope continually,
and will yet praise thee more and more.”
Psalm 71:14

From the Mouth of Babes

If you need a smile for your day, wow, watch this video. Talk about cuteness all wrapped up in these two little guys. You’ve got to love Andrew’s improvisation!

Love,
Sarah

“Out of the mouth of babes and sucklings hast
thou ordained strength because of thine enemies,
that thou mightest still the enemy and the avenger.”
Psalm 8:2

The Maxwell family and ministry blog of Titus2.com.