One of my favorite flowers - the Zinnia. : )
Here we are - another Saturday morning. I'm looking out at lots of sunshine right now. The dew is on the grass and the birds are singing away. So quiet in our neighborhood right now.
Since I have quite a bit to write about today, I will just get right to it. : ) First, as if you didn't know, it's August!!!! With everything going on, the year continues to fly by and with it comes our monthly to-do's. Again, some of these things will pertain to us, and some won't, so just pick and choose the ones that you need to get done and begin! : )
*Change your furnace filter
*Continue to declutter - all shelves, all cabinets, all drawers - in EVERY room!
*Check your water heater to see if it's okay and in good running order
*Clean your grill especially if you've been using it a lot this summer
*Clean out the outdoor garbage cans - ESPECIALLY with the heat and humidity!
*Clean out the garage - get rid of stuff, reorganize, build more storage areas (shelves, etc.), sweep
*Shop for school supplies - even if you don't have children or grandchildren, now is the time to stock up on paper, pens, pencils, notebooks, etc. for your own home! Or.............in our area, we always have school supply drives for other children that need your help in this area. Give, give, give. : )
*Keep maintaining your car - keep it clean and keep it in working condition. Again, I don't think we remember that our car is another provision from the Lord and we are to keep them up!
*And, like me, think about Christmas!!!!!!!! It may be something you're dreading because of everything that is going on and most of us aren't even sure if Christmas, as we knew it, will even happen this year but Christmas is STILL Christmas (no matter what) and we have to prepare. It will come upon us quickly and wouldn't it be nice if we just prepare and get our hearts right about it?
Well, that is it for August - I think it's quite a bit, so if we can begin today to do something, we'll be able to get a lot done by the end of the month. : ) I heard yesterday that most of us tend to think that Summer is this time of relaxation and leisure - the weather is nice and we want to be outdoors doing fun things - but that is not the norm! In days gone by, Summer was the time to work and get everything done before the Winter months came around. Summer should really be a time where we work on our pantries (filling them up and stocking them up for the upcoming Winter months). It should be a time where, if we garden, that we start picking and pulling things to preserve them for the upcoming Winter. Even if we don't garden we should be buying the inexpensive seasonal food (corn-on-the-cob, raspberries, strawberries, etc.) and prepare them to be popped into the freezer or canning them for the Winter months. Everything we do in the Summer is to prepare us for the Winter so that if times of not being able to get out to the market, we'll be just fine and be taken care of. So...........get to work!!!!!! : ) LOL
AUGUST TEA PARTY THEME
Again, I know with these times we're in, that having parties and gatherings are limited, but there is nothing to say that you cannot treat yourself. I know it's not as much fun as it would be in sharing it with someone, but please don't let that stop you. Just choosing an hour or two for yourself and preparing something special can be very uplifting, soothing, and relaxing, so I would encourage you to try it.
Have this tea outdoors in the warm, beautiful weather. If you have a pretty quilt, spread it out in a shady area under a tree.
Plan ahead and buy some pretty sunflowers and put them in a vase - set them on a table nearby.
Bring out a favorite magazine or a book that you've been wanting to start.
And, because it's a warm time of year, iced tea would be what you want to serve. My favorite iced tea is sun tea and I've shared this in past posts already but you just put a few bags of your favorite tea in a container, fill with water, cover it with plastic wrap so that nothing gets in, and let it steep in the sunshine for a few hours. (So, you'll need to do this ahead of time so that it will be ready for your "tea party"). Cut some lemon slices, make a simple syrup if you like sweet tea, and you're ready!
And then you will ALWAYS serve something a bit sweet off to the side - maybe poppy seed bread, gingerbread cookies, or peanut butter cookies.
And play some classical music for relaxation.
Again, I encourage you to try this. If you are blessed to be able to have someone to share it with (all the while staying safe) then good for you!!!!! : )
The evenings around here are very quiet so we try to spend them outside in our backyard if only for an hour or so. It just brings a bit of relaxation before we settle in for the night. Sitting and watching the birds before they call it a night and then listening to the sound of crickets. Remember that sound? It's a late summer sound, isn't it? It takes me back to when I was a child and how we all would stay out late in the summer just walking around or going to the park. So nice. : )
Only a bit of "advice" about pantry building - don't forget beauty products and hobby supplies! I know that we might think that beauty products are frivolous things to buy but I beg to differ. As women, we all know how it feels to be "put together" - how a little makeup makes us feel good - whether it be a touch of tinted moisturizer, some mascara, a little lipstick.........it just brightens our faces. I know that some women think it very vain to go to such lengths but, again, as long as we are appropriate about it and don't go overboard to the point of looking ridiculous, I think this part of taking care of ourselves is important - especially nowadays!!!!!!!!!! Our health and beauty should first come from our taking care of ourselves - the eating right, the exercising, etc., but for those of us who are not natural beauties, we need to help it along a bit (especially as we get older). : )
And then hobby supplies - I have often said throughout my posts that having a hobby (or two, or three..........) is VERY important!!!!!! God is creative and I believe He has put creativity into us in different ways and I believe He is extremely happy when we show, and work on that creativity that He has instilled within us. If you already know what that creative part in you looks like, I think it's quite important to go to the store and buy the supplies that you need for the upcoming Winter months for you to work on. Creativity is also very good for our health and well-being! If you don't know what creative venue you should be working on, still go to the craft/hobby store and walk around - if something grabs your attention and interests you, try it! Nothing ventured, nothing gained! You don't have to go crazy and spend all kinds of money - just buy the basics, go home, and try it! If you find it doesn't suit you, that's okay. Try something else. Seriously, I really want to encourage you in this. When you find what you like, stock up so that you will always have something to work on - it will bring you joy when you need it the most. : )
And then, while stocking up on dish soap, I noticed this a while back when I began stocking up that on the Aldi brand of dish soap (which I think is supposed to be their version of "Dawn") I read this:
look off to the side - where it says "hand soap" - so now I pick this up all the time not only for dish soap, but we use it in our hand soap container as well. It's less expensive than "Dawn" and it works just as well. : )
And, as far as any homemaking comments this week, the only thing that I wrote down while working was "do the worst, first." Maybe you already do this, but I haven't. And when I do, I feel much better! For me, the bathroom has ALWAYS been the area that I put off - and that cannot be because (especially now) the bathroom NEEDS to be clean. So everyday I do this room first before I do anything else - whether that means scrubbing the tub and tile, cleaning the vanity and mirrors, cleaning the toilet and floors, disinfecting the handles and doorknobs - just get that out of the way and go on to the rest of the day. : )
For cooking, I know I may have mentioned this in a past post (very likely) but sometimes when supper comes around I so enjoy a meal that literally takes minutes to prepare. Last night was one of those times. I had some things in the fridge that were already cut up from the night before from another meal - sliced cherry tomatoes, diced red onion, canned mushrooms, shredded cheese, a little baby spinach............so, last night I made this:
Because everything was sliced, diced, and available, this was a super-fast meal and the outcome was really yummy. : )
First you'll need an oven-safe skillet. On top of the stove, add one stick of butter (yes, one stick - it's okay, really). Add the onion and saute' it - add the mushrooms, sliced tomatoes, and the spinach and saute' to wilt the spinach. Beat your eggs and pour it into the pan and scramble till just about set, top it with the cheese, pop it into a preheated 375-degree oven for about 8-10 minutes and it's done! This was SO good - and the fun part is that you can use almost anything you have in your fridge that you want to use up! : )
Before I started this, I put a pot of water to boil so that we could have some good, organic, corn-on-the-cob to go with the meal. I then I served summery cantaloupe slices and red grapes for dessert. SO good and healthy (yes, even with all the butter). I hope you can give it a try. : )
Lastly, I want to share more of my reading in the book about Nehemiah:
*"The dominating factor in all our service for the Master is not the need of other people, but the command of the Lord Jesus Christ - His absolute sovereignty, His right to send His people anywhere, His right to order our steps as well as order our stops. If that principle is forgotten, the needs are so great and the conditions are so perplexing that we shall certainly falter in our service."
*"You may never sail from America across the seas in God's service, but you may, every one of you, be the instrument in God's hands in keeping some beloved missionary safe from spiritual loneliness and spiritual depression, because he knows that he is in your heart always. It is because so many fail at home that so many fail on the field and come back casualties."
*"There is no battle anywhere in the spiritual sense until the Christian pitches in. There is no concern in the mind of Satan about the church at all until he see a selfless Christian seeking only the glory of God, determined to challenge the Satanic grip upon men's hearts and lives in the name of the Lord."
*"......the costliest preparation of all is to look into the face of the Lord Jesus alone, with no applause and no public, and to say to Him, 'Lord Jesus Christ, in this task I seek only Thy glory and the blessing of souls'."
*"It is quality and not quantity that God is looking for; this is an age of mass production, but in the spiritual sense God deals with men one by one."
Again, such good reading! I hope it touches all of you and helps you and gives you something to think about today and the upcoming week. : )
When I receive comments on my blog, along with the kind and supportive comments from blog friends, I also receive what I refer to as pornographic comments as well. It disturbs me greatly and it upsets me and it reminds what ugliness there is out there. Of course, I report it and I delete it but the other day when this happened again (which is obviously from the same person or group of people) the Lord put it upon my heart to pray for them. Something that I never, ever thought of doing! So that is what I'm doing. These people (or this person) is under the power of Satan - his/her heart is controlled by evil and is worldly and unless they come to realize this, and they die today, they will be forever lost. So.........I am praying earnestly that they will be caught, that they will be repentant, that they will be sorry and be saved and that they would allow Jesus to come into their lives and take over and be saved from the bondage of slavery to Satan.
I think we all need to start praying in this way for our country - there are so many people who are blind and need Jesus desperately!!!!
Lastly, since we need some kindness in our communities, here are some things that we may want to implement throughout the week:
*Pay for someone's groceries behind you.
*Take flowers to someone.
*Since drive-through's are big nowadays, pay for the car behind you.
*Put change in vending machines or at Aldi, leave your quarter in the cart for the next person.
*Give extra groceries to the food shelf.
*Tape a gift card to a gas pump - gas is cheap right now, but a little help would be nice.
*Write letters to the elderly.
*Hide dollar bills around the Dollar Store.
*Leave a bottle of detergent at the laundromat.
Just a few ways to bring some kind of niceness into the lives of others. : )
I hope and pray that you will have a good day today and that your weekend will be nice and that you will get something done!!! : ) God bless you and thank you for dropping by.