Friday, July 31, 2015

Large Family Tips - Simplifying Your Home Once and For All




When you have a large family it is easy to get quickly overwhelmed if things in your home are not in order. I have always been a very visual person and I don't function very well if there is clutter or too many things out of place.

This can also true of smaller homes. The more that clutter gets a chance to reign the more chaos and disorganization there is. We need to take control of the situation quickly before it can get out of hand!

Our family was going to move this past year so we had everything in boxes ready to go. But through a series of circumstances God kept us here. With most of our house in boxes we really realized what we truly needed to live with and what we could live without. 

It was quite an eye opener to see what little we needed and everyone was still very happy. Now we are going through the boxes one by one and getting rid of tons of things that we had packed. We didn't really need them to begin with and we just needed to get rid of it. I don't like to clutter up our space with more things that don't need to be there. Our family runs better if our living spaces are more efficient!



So today we are sharing some tips to help you simplify your home once and for all:


1. Get rid of clutter - Make sure everything you own has a home, In our home we are able to put things away quickly when we know where they are supposed to go. Get rid of those things you don't need or have more than one of. Throw away broken items, trash,  and clothes that are damaged. Be shrewd. I usually have to be in the mood to do this or I can get soft and try to start keeping things. It is good to have someone with you when you are declutter who can remind you that you don't need those items. My son is good at that and will say, "Mom, you don't need that. We never use it, just throw it away! "

2. Simplify everything--drawers, closets,cabinets, you name it. Go through it and ask yourself hard questions. Have you used it in the past year? Do you love it? Will you really use it again? Are you keeping it just out of obligation? I don't let things sit in my hands very long--I try to make quick decisions about an item (just a few seconds) and it either gets tossed or saved. I have gotten better at it over the years and really love seeing our old items being taken away to the thrift store, given away to someone in need,  or in the trash. There is such a satisfying feeling when our living spaces are updated and functional!

3. Less is More - America has an infatuation with collecting more and more stuff. But we lose something in that process and that is the time it takes to maintain all of it. We need to remember that less is more. More time to play with the kids, more time to love our husbands, more time with God and towards the things that really matter--like really living life. Each minute that gets sucked away from really living life diminishes our quality of life and robs us of the time of doing what really matters. We weren't put on this earth to just care for our material possessions!

4. Just Say No - Now if you have children who are always wanting a new toy or this or that, learn how to firmly yet lovingly say "no". Keep children's toys under control in designated areas. It has been proven that children are more thankful and more responsible of their things when this is done and they also learn contentment by not getting everything they ask for.

5. Don't let more things in - If you have a habit of hitting the sales and bringing back a bunch of things that you don't need back to your home just remember all the work you had to do to get your house under control. Remember how HARD it was and how it wasn't fun. Be vigilant and guard your home of unnecessary items!

6. Do Quick Clean Ups - Now when you get most of the home simplified and decluttered--add into your day an easy routine where you straighten up the rooms that need it. We do a quick clean up at intervals during the day (which only take a few minutes when everyone pitches in). Once in the morning, sometimes in the  afternoon, before Dad comes home and right before going to bed. This helps to maintains our home on a daily basis.

7. Get the Whole Family on Board - Make sure you aren't tackling all of this on your own. Be sure to include the children in the cleaning process. I assign all of my children chores and jurisdictions (areas they need to clean). It helps give them life skills and helps them to be responsible. I like giving my kids jobs around the house because it helps them to not be lazy and helps them to be better problem solvers. As they have gotten older I have become more of a manager than doing most of the hands on cleaning. I assign jobs and they do it. It keeps them busy, productive, and learning how to serve others.



I should mention that we also have a new addition to our family this past year---little Isabella has been a weakness for me and we have a ton of baby items she has grown out of collecting that really need to go. I am planning on selling most of her baby items to earn some extra side cash for our homeschool. Just beware of keeping too many things for a garage sale-- sometimes I will just donate to the thrift store to get the clutter up and out of the way as soon as possible especially if I am too busy to pull a sale together.

My favorite go-to books to get inspired on decluttering are always these---I highly recommend them!


Now off I go to tackle more boxes...:)


We hope these tips will help you to get serious and simplify your home for good!






**WE WANT TO HEAR FROM YOU**


Do you struggle with simplifying your home?


What other tips would you add?


















*This post contains affiliate links.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Wise Woman Linkup!



A Wise Woman Builds Her Home is a place to be encouraged in your high and noble calling of role of wife and mother and daughter to the King and we want to encourage each and every single reader out there to build up strong Christian homes to the glory of God.

We would love for you to link up with us---share your posts on  building up your home, homemaking, character, hospitality, femininity, family, tea, recipes, parenting, marriage, homeschooling, and whatever else you'd like to share that would encourage our community. Feel free to also share more than one post!

Now if you do join us we only require one thing, PLEASE share the image below on your blog and link back so that others can find us and join in the fun or just simply paste and copy the code into your blog sidebar or at the bottom of the post that you shared here:


A Wise Woman Builds Her Home




You can enter below:


Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Home & Farm Sense Blog {& Giveaway}!

Are you a homesteader?

Or maybe you are one at heart and just love reading about life on a farm and the fun experiences of gardening, canning, caring for animals, and so forth. A gal can dream, right?

Then you will definitely want to know about this especially lovely blog called Home & Farm Sense.











Let me introduce you to the sweet ladies that run this blog--this is Kristi.




From their blog:

"I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I married the love of my life 34 years ago. I birthed 18 children; six of them are married, three more ran off to college,  one went ahead of us to live with Jesus and there are 8 still living at home.I have 11 grandchildren and we are expecting 4 more to join us next summer.I am a farmer, and in my spare time a writer. I grew up on a small farm in a log cabin not even a half mile from where I now live. My childhood and adulthood have been filled with milking cows, gardening, cutting firewood, canning, butchering and doing all the millions of things that seem perfectly normal to me.
Many of the things I do every day have become skills forgotten by so many.God was pleased to bless us with a little spot of soil to grow into a farm and to grow our children on.Here I hope to share with you stories of days gone by, forgotten arts of a time past, the day to day life of a farmer and share with you how I seek to glorify my God, delight my husband and love my children in the midst of it all."
And this is Amy:

From their blog:

 "I am a child of God and the very blessed wife of a wonderful man.  My husband, Steve, is a retired Air Force Special Operations Helicopter Pilot.  Currently he works from home for Amazon.com and runs our family farm.
I am also the mother of 18 children. Steve and I built our family through birth and adoption.  We have 5 children by birth, our oldest is 21 and our youngest is 5.  We also have 13 children by adoption (ages 25-12).  Our adopted children came through the foster care system, almost all in large sibling groups.  While there have been huge challenges and heartbreak along the way, we are grateful to God for this amazing journey! You can read more about our adoption journey here.
In addition to parenting and homeschooling our mega family, we also run a small family farm, which we affectionately call “Autumn Creek Ranch.” We have loved the work of Joel Salatin and have patterned much of what we do by his example.
Our farm is located on 100 sub-irrigated acres in Northeast Washington state. We have a variety of animals that we love and care for. Some of our animals include Jersey cows, heritage breed pigs, Navajo Churro sheep and Great Pyrenees. We have studied nutrition and health both for ourselves and our livestock for quite a few years. The work of Sally Fallon and Nourishing Traditions has been very influential for us. We do not vaccinate and do not give antibiotics, instead opting for natural treatments since natural treatments not only build immunity but do not have all those nasty side effects! This is why we love essential oils!
Finally, I  love to share recipes and write about health matters, especially aromatherapy and herbal treatments for both people and animals.  To wrap it up, I occasionally write about organization, my thoughts on home learning and our adventures through Reactive Attachment Disorder."




Did you notice that they both have 18 children? That's 36 children between the two of them--what a blessing. I would love to sit down with them and talk about how they organize everything and run a household on top of it all. Imagine the wisdom that could be gleaned from these two!

Kristi and Amy especially enjoy sharing on these topics:




It can be so refreshing to read about farm life and the many blessings that come with it. It seems to take you back to a simpler time with less rush and busyness. Life seems much slower on a farm than in the city, wouldn't you agree?

You might also want to check out some of their most popular posts:

Make Your Own Dog Food
Nourishing Bath for Hair and Skin
Sweet Potato Sausage Soup
When Everything's Messy
Simplifying Clutter and Distraction


I really enjoyed this one:  18 Kids! With nine of my own I can definitely relate!

You can visit them here at their blog and follow them on Facebook here. They can also be found on Pinterest and Twitter!




THE GIVEAWAY!

The Home & Farm Sense ladies would like to giveaway a special set of books to our readers that were written by Kristi (the top three below of which are part of a Homesteading Stories of the Pacific Northwest)


Henry is the first of a series of short stories of the men and women who braved the wild land of early America to carve out a place to grow their families.

Meet Henry at his boyhood home in Poland and follow him across the Atlantic, over the land to Oregon Territory, and finally to where he finally claims his own homestead.



Anna is the second in a series of short stories of the men and women who braved the wild land of early America to carve out a place to grow their families.

Meet Anna at her childhood home in Wisconsin and follow her across America to Oregon Territory. Here she meets Henry and together they build their family homestead.



Come learn what it was really like to grow up on a homestead with Lillian and her brothers and sisters.

If you enjoy learning homesteading skills, history and entertaining stories of farm life, you will love Lillian.



The author shares her life from fear of having too many children, to the joy and blessing of becoming the best mother she can be.

Included are tips about saving money, making gifts, home-schooling a crowd, inventory, menu planning, shopping and many more useful tips to make it all work smoothly in your family too.

No matter what stage you’re in at your house, you’ll enjoy this easy read and delight to get to know the author as a friend.




You can enter below:









Hope you win!











Friday, July 24, 2015

The Truth About Complaining

*This post may contain affiliate links. 


I've been thinking about how easy it is for us all to complain nowadays. A little here, a little there. Very carelessly. Without even a second thought. I am guilty myself. And yet, we have all that you can imagine and more-- the blessings literally overflow in abundance. What do we really have to complain about?

There is a danger that is overlooked when we carelessly complain and Spurgeon, one of my favorite preachers, puts it like this:




"Be careful, dear friends,

that you do not misrepresent God yourselves.

You who murmur; 

you who say that God deals hardly with you,

you give God an ill character;

when you look so melancholy,

Worldlings say, “The religion of Jesus is intolerable;”

and so you stain the honor of God. "





-A Jealous God Sermon,
1853





Complaining is a poison that can spread like gangrene. it doesn't just affect you but all those around you. You are proclaiming from the rooftops that what God has provided for you is just not enough.

 Instead of complaining, be intent on building up those around you and practice speaking your blessings out loud. YES, out loud! Praise God for all that He has done in your life that you are not worthy of! Thank Him from the bottom of your heart and put on gratefulness. 

I love this quote about being grateful:


"A thankful heart is one of the primary identifying characteristics of a believer. It stands in stark contrast to pride, selfishness, and worry. And it helps fortify the believer’s trust in the Lord and reliance of His provision, even in the toughest times. No matter how choppy the seas become, a believer’s heart is buoyed by constant praise and gratefulness to the Lord."  -JM



Here are some good verses to help remind you about it:


"Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."  -  1 Thess. 5:18

"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." - Ephesians 4:29

"Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content." -  1 Tim. 6:6-8


**Prayer** - Dear God, please help us learn to be content and grateful with all that you have done in our lives. Let our perspective be a holy one that desires to bring glory to you and not a worldly one that brings shame to your name. Let us turn from the sin of complaining and instead start sharing your blessings, love and mercy to us so that others might see you through every circumstance--whether easy or hard. Thank you for all that  you have done in our lives. In Jesus Name, Amen.













Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Wise Woman Linkup!


A Wise Woman Builds Her Home is a place to be encouraged in your high and noble calling of role of wife and mother and daughter to the King and we want to encourage each and every single reader out there to build up strong Christian homes to the glory of God.

We would love for you to link up with us---share your posts on  building up your home, homemaking, character, hospitality, femininity, family, tea, recipes, parenting, marriage, homeschooling, and whatever else you'd like to share that would encourage our community. Feel free to also share more than one post!

But before you begin I just want to remind you about to enter our exciting giveaway that we announced yesterday--The Homemakers Daily Planner 2016 & 2015 Set.




You can enter the giveaway HERE. 



Now back to our Linkup--if you do join us we only require one thing, PLEASE share the image below on your blog and link back so that others can find us and join in the fun or just simply paste and copy the code into your blog sidebar or at the bottom of the post that you shared here:



A Wise Woman Builds Her Home




You can enter below:


Check out Young Living Oils and their Seed to Seal promise!





 


Tuesday, July 21, 2015

How to Get Organized in Your Life & Homemaking {with The Homemakers Daily Planner & Giveaway!}



Do you struggle with homemaking?

Are you tired of dealing with not being organized?

As a homemaker of over 20 years to a large family I know how important it is to have an organized home and life. If things are not the way I need them to to be to function, things can easily fall apart at the seams!

Growing up I didn't really have someone teach me the ropes on how to do all of this. My mom was great at showing me how to clean a home but we both would have never imagined on what level I would be doing it at in the future.

That is why I am so grateful when I find something that can really help homemakers especially in the long run because we need help now but we also need that help to last.That is where The Homemaking Daily Planner comes in.  It was created by a mom just like you and me who really knows and understood what our needs are.




Can you see what she has added on the cover?

"Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever. "




What a much needed reminded in the midst of our busy homemaking days!


Here is a bit about her from the website:

"The Daily Planner was designed by Sue, wife of Dan for 24 years and mother to six lovely children, two girls and four boys ages 5-21. The planner was developed after several years of motherhood and homemaking. Sue understood that a homemaker's day can rarely be scheduled and structured the same as the one before – not every task can fit neatly into the time-slot allotted by other planners. Since her first publication in 2010, thousands of homemakers have benefited from the daily planner."

Here are a couple of closer shots for you:







I love that this planner includes a projects and events category because there is always a new project going on around here! This is helpful because I have a couple of secret projects going on right now (that I can't wait to tell you about) and events are important too because last week we had near 100 people over to our house. Did I need help organizing this thing? Yes, I did!



If you look to the right hand side of the pages you will see a menu box which is very handy. It helps you to get started on your day and know what you will have in advance. 






There are little inspirational quotes sprinkled throughout---this was my favorite one. 




I really like the long lists here---they are perforated so you can easily take them with you! Take more than one if need be. 



Here is what is officially included in a nutshell: 



  • An overview of the year by month.
  • Two-page spreads for entries each month.
  • Two-page spreads for entries each week. This allows you to sketch out an entire week, day by day.
  • A section to enter projected tasks.
  • A section to enter specific projects.
  • A section to keep a listing of personal contact information.
  • A perforated shopping list section allows you to take the list with you.

It is also sprial bound for easy use and the cover is laminated for durability. Two pockets are also included. 

I truly believe that many of you out there will benefit from this planner all year long. It is a great place to plan out what needs to get done. Not only will you be able to organize your home, menus, projects and more, but you will find that getting all of this done on paper can help get your life under control and bring more peace to your household. Things always run much easier and smoother with a plan in place!

You can find The Homemakers Friend Daily Planner at The Homemakers Depot and you will also want to check out the buy one, get one deal going on right now too!






The Giveaway

 I am also excited to share with you that we are having a giveaway and giving away not ONE but TWO of these planners!



The Homemaking Planner Set for 2016 and 2015






You can enter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway






Hope you win!



















******************

Are you interested in advertising at A Wise Woman Builds Her Home?
 You can get more details here or contact me  at wisewomanads@gmail.com.





Thursday, July 16, 2015

How to Deal with An Unthankful and Complaining Spirit




Do you struggle with an unthankful and complaining spirit?

I know that sometimes it can be so easy to complain about all the little things---the children, the messy house, all the work that needs to be done, and so forth---it can be easy to fall into grumbling. 

But having this type of attitude harms everyone--including those you love most

Your children will pick up on your negativity and don't be surprised it they begin to copy what you say. It can sap the life and happiness from your marriage. It harms you because you can become bitter and lose your joy. 




It is like bringing a deadly poison into your home that spills over to everyone there. 


"But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power."



What God says about complaining:


"Do all things without grumbling or disputing,  that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain."

"Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear." Ephesians 2:29


John Broadus, a baptist pastor from the 1800's, explained it like this:

"An unthankful and complaining spirit is an abiding sin against God, and a cause of almost continual unhappiness; and yet how common such a spirit is. How prone we seem to be to forget the good that life knows, and remember and brood over. its evil-to forget its joys, and think only of its sorrows-to forget thankfulness, and remember only to complain. 

The ox will graze all day in green pastures, and know of nothing but the moment's enjoyment; and many a man will enjoy the blessings that are so spread out before him, the pleasures that are so thickly strewed along his path, and never have one moment's thought of the bountiful Being that gave them, that good and gracious One who is "kind to the unthankful and the evil." 


But then let trouble come-want or suffering, disappointment or anxiety, remorse or dread, and how soon he grows dissatisfied with life, how soon he complains of his hard lot, and murmurs against the God that made him...


 If he does not carry it so far as this, he will be sure to let this discomfort prevent all thankfulness. Now I say we need to change here. Our feeling ought to be, that though we have troubles, yet these shall not prevent our being glad and thankful at the many blessings, the more numerous and rich and undeserved blessings we enjoy. "


Do we allow our discomfort to prevent all happiness, ladies? We need to guard our thoughts while we walk about our home, as we raise our children and as we build strong marriages for the Lord. 

We need to squash that unthankful and complaining spirit and throw it out the door for good!

Once we take control of that we need to replace it with a deep, abiding, thankfulness to God that should permeate every fiber of our being.





Here are 5 Helpful Bible Verses on Thankfulness:


1. Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. - 1 Thessalonians 5:18

2. Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!- Psalm 107:1

3. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.  Colossians 3:15-17

4. Giving thanks always and for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. Ephesians 5:20

5. Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. -Colossians 4:2

My prayer for you today:

Dear Lord, please help us to be thankful. It is not always easy but we know that with your strength that all things are possible. Help us to meditate on your word and know that it is truth. We will not allow our  joy to be stolen by thinking foolish thoughts that do not line up with what you have said. Help us to focus on our blessings and to live a selfless life of putting You first each day. Thank you for the gift of life and help me to glorify You today in my actions and thoughts. In Jesus name, Amen.