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Month: December 2016

What Makes A Gifted Homemaker

What Makes A Gifted Homemaker

I was recently talking with a friend when she nonchalantly referred to me as a gifted homemaker. Homemaking wasn’t the main focus of the conversation so I chose not to derail things by shifting gears.  However, the comment got my attention and caused me to linger on the subject a little longer in my head.

I’ve never really considered myself a gifted homemaker. So for a few days I tumbled thoughts around in my head like a favorite pair of jeans bouncing around in the dryer. I thought a lot about the different homes we’ve lived in, the numerous homes we’ve visited and even the home I dream of having someday.

I tried to pinpoint the specific details about the homes that belong to what I consider “gifted homemakers” but I couldn’t find a common thread. I couldn’t figure out exactly what makes someone a gifted homemaker. Is it a beautiful home? Is it the ability to decorate with the latest trends? Does a woman have to be gifted in the areas of organization? Do you need a large house so you can host and entertain often? To be a gifted homemaker do you have to channel your inner Joanna Gaines? I wasn’t exactly sure what makes someone gifted in the area of homemaking.

We recently traveled to Georgia for a few days away. Some friends in the area graciously offered their home to us while her family stayed with in-laws. Our party of seven took up residence in their home and when we left on Sunday I was in awe of her “homemaking skills.” After our little weekend get away it all came together- I was finally aware of exactly what makes a gifted homemaker. I jotted down a few specific things about her home that I hope to soon replicate in my own.

5. Homes do not have to be massive.  I’m in no way saying that you can’t have an enormous home and still be a gifted homemaker– you certainly can. However, the size of your home doesn’t matter one tiny bit.

4. Home decor should be a reflection of your personality, not the popular design trends.  Trends and styles come and go but unfortunately style isn’t eternal. It’s only a matter of time before the shiplap, reclaimed wood and open floor plans that dominate the interior design world of today will be out of style and dated. Instead of following the trends, I want the inside of my home to reflect who I am and what our lives are about.

There are several young children in my friend Christy’s home and little glimpses of their personalities and daily lives can be seen in every room of the house. Being in her home gave me better insight into her family and her heart.

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3. Your home should be a delicate reflection of who you are and what you value most in this life.

You can’t be in my friend’s home for more than a few minutes without knowing what in her life is most important. Eight years, and four kids, later her wedding photographs and marriage certificate serve as a reminder of a lifelong covenant.


2. Homes are to be lived in. This one doesn’t come easy for me. I tend to function better when beds are made, throw pillows are fluffed and closet doors are closed. I’m going to blame it on my suppressed OCD but seriously…the struggle is real.

My mom once told me about a friend that fluffed the throw pillows on her couch 2-3 times a day to keep them looking pristine. She was one day diagnosed with cancer and decided that life was too short to spend fluffing throw pillows. With tears in her eyes she recounted the wasted time she had spent fluffing throw pillows instead of living the life she had been given. She vowed to use her final days to truly live in her house and never waste the time the Lord had given fluffing pillows.

Her story reminds me to walk past the throw pillows that are tossed on the floor and embrace the days I have with my family.

1. Our homes should be a refuge from the craziness of this world– a place where you can meet with God regularly.

The combination of those things I mentioned before made my time in my friend’s home so enjoyable, but there was something else that made me want to be in her house. The Spirit of the Lord dwelt within the walls of her home and I found myself wanting to linger there a little longer.

Early one morning I was the only one awake. I tiptoed, ever so quietly, into the living room and opened my Bible. As I flipped through the pages, dimly illuminated by the lamplight I was reminded of  2 Chronicles 7:15-16…

Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayer that is made in this place. For now I have chosen and consecrated this house that my name may be there forever. My eyes and my heart will be there for all time.

The oversized comfy chair beckoned me to procrastinate the day’s to do list and dwell in the presence of the Lord. It was sitting in that chair that I realized the Spirit of the Lord dwelled in that home and above all else, that’s what made me want to be there.

I’m not putting this here to serve as a cozy home checklist. It’s here to remind me of what I truly cherish in a home. In a few short weeks we will begin to search for our 13th home in 13 years of marriage and as often as I’m asking the Lord for outdoor space for our boys and enough space to create a schoolroom, I’m asking that His name will be in our home forever.

Our Jesse Tree

Our Jesse Tree

Today I posted a picture of our Jesse Tree on social media which led to a number of  text messages and comments asking about the tree. The process is so completely simple and underwhelming that I decided to snap a few pictures and throw together a quick how to.

My amazing husband has a list of talents and abilities that could quite possibly shut down the world wide web but handy man is nowhere on the list. Taking that into consideration, I try and choose projects that do not solicit his assistance. Make sense?

If you happen to have a handy husband then don’t let him read this post because he will balk at the elementary way I’ve gone about this little project and rightfully so. Not to mention, he can probably come up with something way better.

But for those of you that just want a simple task you can finish by yourself in a single afternoon…I’m your girl.

Supply List: two boards, 25 upholstery tacks, paint/stain, nails, hammer, Plaster of Paris, bucket, cloth, ribbon, ornaments

You’ll need to make a quick trip to Lowe’s for two pieces of wood. Our Jesse tree comes up to my hip and to have one approximately that height you will need two boards, one 17 inches long and the other 33. Not to mention, if you’re super kind to the guy in the wood section at Lowe’s he will totally cut the pieces to the dimensions you request.


Paint or stain the boards to your liking and nail them together in the shape of a cross.

Of all the steps, this next one is the most tedious. You’ll need to figure out the spacing of your upholstery tacks so that all 25 of them will fit nicely on your cross. It’s up to you how you place them so just go with whatever works.

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Pour the liquid plaster into the bucket and stand the cross up in the center of the plaster. I secured ours to our back porch deck with a rope so it would dry without me standing out there holding it for 8 hours.


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Your cross will more than likely be secure in the bucket once the plaster has dried but over the years ours has worked it’s way out so I just slide it back into the hole.

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Use the cloth to wrap around the bucket and secure it with the ribbon.

We are currently using this book to guide our family worship times but there are several more options out there. Before you order anything just make sure whatever you order lines up with what you believe because there are variations in the material based on the author.

I ordered our wooden ornaments many years ago from Etsy and couldn’t find the exact set but this one seems to be the same thing and even comes with a booklet explaining each ornament and the story that goes along with it.


We go through one story each day during the month of December with the hopes of our boys being able to recall the story, using the pictures on the ornaments as reminders. It has grown to be my favorite Christmas tradition and a great accountability tool for slowing down each day in December to retrace the genealogy of Jesus and behold the beauty of the Gospel.

Wondering Why Wednesday

Wondering Why Wednesday

Another installment of “Wondering Why Wednesday!”


Why does my 5 year old continue to tell me this is not his baby brother’s sock. In case you were wondering, I gave up and just let him wear the stinkin’ sock.