to have Courage....In Family Life, In Spirituality, In Health, In Living Simply

I'm on a journey...... as we all are. Learning, remembering, re-discovering about health, spirituality, relationships, emotions and the mind.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I'm Kinda Surprised!

My favorite month of the year is gone, again. I LOVE September......the still sunny days that are sandwiched between crisp mornings and cool evenings. Oh, how I love the changing colors of the trees, and I must admit that the process of the deciduous trees changing colors and dropping their leaves is far more beautiful out here in Nova Scotia than I've ever witnessed in the west. I can hardly believe that we are blessed to experience 3 autumns out here. Wow, and the time has flown.

Yes, we've been gone from Vancouver Island now for just over 2 years. It was the 20th of September when we pulled away from our house and wonderful neighbourhood, and headed out across the country, just Everette and I and our youngest 7 (of 9) crammed into 2 vehicles with all our worldly possessions (well, except 5 rubbermaid boxes parked at my mom's that contain filed taxes, finished scrapbooks, and my wedding dress that had also been my sisters, and before that our Mom's. That's it). We arrived here in Nova Scotia for the weekend of Thanksgiving, and then last year we left for Arizona shortly after Thanksgiving, and now we're here for our 3rd Thanksgiving. Who would have ever thought? It had once been a dream of ours to visit the Maritimes, and now we sorta live here!!!

So, we will be here at least through this winter. My sister and her dh are heading west in hopes of a milder winter, so we are house/dog/cat-sitting for them. It's a big beautiful house of which Everette still has lots of finishing work to do. It is a blessing to be able to stay here. We are just across the roadway from the beach and wonderful coastal trails, and behind us on their property are wonderful hills that will provide great tobogganing for the children. All of our children prefer spending winter either here or in Arizona over BC, so they are excited about staying here. None of us like all that rain.

I'm finding it a bit hard to believe that I am almost 25 weeks into this pregnancy, and I'm hardly feeling pregnant. And its weird to think that this child will be the only one of our entire family not born in British Columbia!!

Rauchelle paid me a compliment the other day, saying that I don't 'seem' pregnant, and Everette seconds it. He says I'm not as moody & snarky. And I know that physically I feel so much better than in previous pregnancies. So, it's a myth that you get more and more run down, or each successive pregnancy is more and more taxing on your body. I'm sure that how I'm feeling has alot to do with some changes that have taken place in my life, in my body, and in my spiritual walk.

Such as:
**Always trying to improve my eating habits, and cut down more and more on sweets. Some days are certainly better than others ;)I haven't given up chocolate (yet).

**I start every morning with a drink that's good for my liver and blood, and helps develop an alkaline body where disease can't live.

**More than a year ago I cast a demon out of me (I never used to believe that Christians could even have them!) and I felt it leave my pelvic region. Since that day I have had virtually no problems walking. In some pregnancies by even week 16 I would have to crawl some days because of my pelvic problems. But not this time!!! Hallelujah!!

**Everette and I are doing T-Tapp exercises several times a week and feeling a definite improvement and measurable losses.

**I continue to work on focusing on those things that bring LIFE. It's a constant struggle but one of which I am MORE than a CONQUEROR.

Question for You: What is the longest road-trip you've been on?

Monday, September 28, 2009

Love Me Where You're At

I became aware of Francis Frangipane about 1.5 years ago through Elijah List and I have always enjoyed and been moved by Francis' writings. Same thing today.

Thanks to our webpastor this article was brought to my attention as I don't subscribe to Elijah List anymore. I couldn't keep up with all the reading ;)

I'm a bit teary-eyed today as I have cried while reading a blogpost of somebody I don't know nor follow, and I cried when Rauchelle shared the story of the boy with the wet pants (check out the previous post here), and I cried again reading Francis' writings. They aren't tear-jerkers. I'm just pregnant! That is a good enough explanation.

Question for You: Do you tend to be weepy or cry alot when you are pregnant?

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Compassion in a Child

Come with me to a third grade classroom......There
is a nine-year-old kid sitting at his desk and
all of a sudden, there is a puddle between his
feet and the front of his pants are wet. He
thinks his heart is going to stop because he
cannot possibly imagine how this has
happened. It's never happened before, and
he knows that when the boys find out he will
never hear the end of it. When the girls find
out, they'll never speak to him again as long as
he lives...

The boy believes his heart is going to stop; he puts his
head down and prays this prayer, 'Dear God, this
is an emergency! I need help now! Five minutes
from now I'm dead meat.'

He looks up from his prayer and here comes the teacher
with a look in her eyes that says he has been

As the teacher is walking toward him, a classmate named
Susie is carrying a goldfish bowl that is filled
with water. Susie trips in front of the teacher
and inexplicably dumps the bowl of water in the
boy's lap.

The boy pretends to be angry, but all the while is
saying to himself, 'Thank you, Lord! Thank you,

Now all of a sudden, instead of being the object of
ridicule, the boy is the object of sympathy. The
teacher rushes him downstairs and gives him gym shorts to put on while his pants dry out. All the other children are on their hands and knees
cleaning up around his desk. The sympathy is
wonderful. But as life would have it, the
ridicule that should have been his has been
transferred to someone else -


She tries to help, but they tell her to get out.
You've done enough, you klutz!'

Finally, at the end of the day, as they are waiting for
the bus, the boy walks over to Susie and
whispers, 'You did that on purpose, didn't you?'
Susie whispers back, 'I wet my pants once

May God help us see the opportunities that are always
around us to do good...

Question for You: Do you have a story of compassion to share?

Friday, September 25, 2009

Just Because You're Not Sick

Just because you're not sick doesn't mean you're healthy. ~Author Unknown

I love this quote. So simple, but so true.

It's like seeing a skinny woman and thinking that she's healthy and fit. Not necessarily true. She may be skinny, but have weak muscles....lacking strength and endurance. And she can have numerous ailments or disease.

A friend's mother would say that "If I ever got cancer, THEN I would eat differently." I think that's the mentality of our western world. We aren't willing to give up our way of eating and living, as long as we aren't aware of some health issue that's big enough to make us take action. Like we are told that we have 6 months to live. Drastic change is finally in order.

In reality, we probably all have health issues, but we think they are normal. We catch colds or flus every fall. We have post-nasal drip all year (might be food allergies to wheat?) or we have seasonal hayfever. We have chronic dry skin patches. Our nails and hair aren't healthy. We don't have several easy bowel movements every single day. Our digestion just doesn't seem to be as good as it used to be. We think achiness is just part of growing old (anytime after 40?) Our eyesight ain't what it used to be. Nor is our hearing.

Yes, we age, but we don't have to be falling apart piece by piece. We could be like Moses:

Deuteronomy 34:7 Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone.

Health is part of our inheritance as the children of God.
3 John 1:2 I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.

In Isaiah 53:5 it says that He (Jesus) took the beatings and whippings (the stripes) so that we would be healed. Great health is for us. Not just for the time coming when we are given new heavenly bodies. It is for now. In Isaiah 53 it also says "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities;" Yes, just as He was crucified for our sins and transgressions, that we can receive forgiveness NOW, so the healing is for NOW! We can have it NOW!!

It's our inheritance. But just as the Promised Land was the inheritance of God's chosen people, they had to walk in obedience to what God required of them. They couldn't just sit back and expect to wake up one morning in the Land of Promise. They had to work towards that end, always listening to God's instructions.

Well, God has given us instructions in His Word. If we aren't following them, then we may be falling under the curses of Deut 28, or other scriptures, where we aren't living in the fullness of what Jesus died to give us, here and now, and forevermore. Maybe we are allowing our adversary to come and steal, and kill, and destroy us without even recognizing what he is doing, because we just think it is 'normal'. But Jesus says that He came to bring us LIFE, and that LIFE ABUNDANTLY!! Back to Deut 28, there's a list of blessings. But God's blessings for us are for those who follow His commands and statues, and who love Him with all of their heart, soul, mind and strength. There's actually a doing for us, just like the Israelites who didn't sit and wait....they went and fought, and marched, and sang, and worshiped, all as God commanded.

So, God's Word tells us that the plants are to be our food, and our medicine. He tells us what foods aren't good to eat, and he tells us what foods are good to eat. It's all throughout the Books of the Law. In New Testament it says:

1 Corinthians 6:12
"Everything is permissible for me"—but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible for me"—but I will not be mastered by anything."

1 Corinthians 10:23
"Everything is permissible"—but not everything is beneficial. "Everything is permissible"—but not everything is constructive."

So, no matter what you think of Old Testament Law, isn't the point I want to linger on here. The basic truth is, not everything we do is constructive to us, or it doesn't build us up (ie.,make us healthy). If it isn't building us up, it may very likely (probable) to be undermining us.

I personally believe that God has His reasons why He told the Israelites to eat or sustain from certain foods(and whether science today understands why or not doesn't matter). So, although I may be free to choose otherwise, I think it's foolish to eat what He told His chosen people not to eat. Not because I can't eat it, but because I don't think it's constructive or beneficial. That doesn't mean I have followed all His directions. I haven't. But it makes total sense to me that our health would be far more vibrant if we did!!!

When Paul says, "I will not be mastered by anything" it makes me think of cravings, or bad habits, or obsessions and addictions. Those are clearly things that show that I am NOT in control, but something else is mastering me.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Understanding Candida

I know that Candida seems to be a prevalent health issue with many people.

I think this video by Dr. Douglas Graham is quite informative, and seems like a sensible approach to the problem. I won't even try to explain his perspective, except to say that he's saying the problem isn't a problem with sugar....its a problem with fat in our diet.

Question for You: Have you overcome Candida?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Family Charades and Suction Cups

I love it when Everette gets in a whacky mood and plays 'silliness' with the children. Tonight he got in the acting mood and played Bible charades with the dc. The excitement on their faces when they guess correctly is priceless. But even above that is sometimes the utter extravagance Everette must go through to get his point across.

I'm reminded of years ago when Everette, Layne and I played charades. It could be absolutely any subject. He certainly stumped us three girls. We eventually had to get him to tell us the answer, or we'd have never gotten it. After all, it was ....... a suction cup! Can you imagine my dh being a suction cup????

Well, just this past year Layne, Rauchelle and I were reminiscing about it again, and when we acted it out for Everette.....he was clueless. Absolutely clueless.

Shows you that you have to be in a certain mind to win at playing charades. But it sure can be a pile of fun and create super memories.

Question for You: Have you had 'a funny' playing charades?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

"Smart Choices" .......seriously????

Read the Smart Choices article for a good laugh. It's hard to believe that some of us are such gullible people in an educated and a developed country. Have we lost our brains???

I hope you're doing your own research as to a healthy diet. It's obvious that following the Standard American Diet (SAD) or one based on the Food Pyramid most of us grew up with in school, is not producing a healthy population. I watch the people at the grocery store while waiting in line at the cashier, and its hard sometimes to find even 1 trim person. Almost everybody I see is hefty or obese. And then have a look at what's in their grocery cart!

I know that when I shopped in Comox back in BC, I seemed to find a whole lot more trimmer people out there. And they were usually the ones whose buggies were full of produce and limited dairy and meats (if any). They didn't bulk up with processed foods, but were purchasing real foods. There was also great availability of fresh organic foods, and healthy choices. The raw food movement was prevelant in the Comox Valley. Is there a correlation?

Now it's a different story here in Nova Scotia. The people are heavier. There's also a poor supply of healthy foods here as the demand for it is less. I remember that same scenario in Whitecourt, Alberta. There was little choice for healthy alternatives in the community, and the obesity seemed rampant.

Whether the choices are easy or not, we have nobody to blame but ourselves if we are making less-than-ideal choices. We don't need a dean of a University or the gov't or big corporation to label smart choices for ourselves. We can educate ourselves, and make appropriate choices for our family. Even without a bunch of capital letters after our name (ie., college degrees) I can bank on us mom's and dad's at educating ourselves with the help of God, so we can feed our familys from His abundance.

Question for You: What silly examples do you know of where something obviously unhealthy has been labeled healthy?

Monday, September 21, 2009

A Pleasing Aroma

Whenever I see the words A Pleasing Aroma, I have two thoughts. One is of aromatherapy....the use of essential oils to impart health and healing to emotions, physical ailments, etc. But the more important thing I think about is based on Scriptures, like.....

Psalm 66:15
That is why I am sacrificing burnt offerings to you—the best of my rams as a pleasing aroma,and a sacrifice of bulls and male goats.

Numbers 29:8,18,36
You must present a burnt offering as a special gift, a pleasing aroma to the Lord...... all with no defects.

Numbers 28:2
Give these instructions to the people of Israel: The offerings you present as special gifts are a pleasing aroma to me; they are my food. See to it that they are brought at the appointed times and offered according to my instructions.

Ephesians 5:2
Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.

These verses make me think of a few things, especially about how I live before my Lord. I obviously am not required to make a burnt offering of a ram or bull or male lamb. For Jesus is the Lamb that was slain once and for all, that paid the price for my sin and that of the whole world.

But I think there are a few significant things to notice from these scriptures that can still pertain to me today. For we still are to sacrifice something to God.

The sacrifices required were to be 'all with no defects'. In other words, perfect. Just as Jesus had to be 'with no defects', so should our sacrifice be with no defects. Give our very best to the Lord. We can never fool God. He knows our hearts and can see if we are withholding our best from Him.

Our offerings ought to be something special. Something unique. Something set apart from the usual. That's what actually makes something holy.It isn't that it is 'perfect' or 'without sin''s that it is set apart from the rest; set aside only for God's use and pleasure.

Romans 12:1 says (NIV) Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God -- this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is -- his good, pleasing and perfect will.

We are to present OURSELVES, our whole being, very much alive, holy and pleasing to God. This is worship. The physical body being presented to God is a spiritual act of worship. What you do with your physical body is either worshipful to God, or its not. Don't be fooled to think that you can treat your body however you jolly-well-please, and then lift your hands during sing-a-song 'worship' time at church and call that worship. (For me personally, this verse was a major one in being convicted about surgical birth-control/mutilation. See Our Journey to Quiverful and My Frustration)

That sacrifice also includes letting go of all the worldly things we hold dear. We are to be transformed in our minds, in the way that we perceive the world, and how we see other people. Our thoughts need to come under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. (see 2 Cor 10:5 & Col 2:8)

God said that the offerings ought to be given at the appointed times, and done as He instructed. Remember the story of King Saul (1 Samuel 15)

1 Samuel said to Saul, "I am the one the LORD sent to anoint you king over his people Israel; so listen now to the message from the LORD. 2 This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'I will punish the Amalekites for what they did to Israel when they waylaid them as they came up from Egypt. 3 Now go, attack the Amalekites and totally destroy [a] everything that belongs to them. Do not spare them; put to death men and women, children and infants, cattle and sheep, camels and donkeys.' "

So Saul calls his men to battle to annhilate the Amalekites....only.....

8 He took Agag king of the Amalekites alive, and all his people he totally destroyed with the sword. 9 But Saul and the army spared Agag and the best of the sheep and cattle, the fat calves [b] and lambs—everything that was good. These they were unwilling to destroy completely, but everything that was despised and weak they totally destroyed.

This wasn't according to God's instructions.

13 When Samuel reached him, Saul said, "The LORD bless you! I have carried out the LORD's instructions."
14 But Samuel said, "What then is this bleating of sheep in my ears? What is this lowing of cattle that I hear?"
15 Saul answered, "The soldiers brought them from the Amalekites; they spared the best of the sheep and cattle to sacrifice to the LORD your God, but we totally destroyed the rest."

Saul is making excuses for his behavior, passing blame onto his soldiers, and then trying to point out that they did follow 'some' of God's instructions.

16 "Stop!" Samuel said to Saul. "Let me tell you what the LORD said to me last night."
"Tell me," Saul replied.

17 Samuel said, "Although you were once small in your own eyes, did you not become the head of the tribes of Israel? The LORD anointed you king over Israel. 18 And he sent you on a mission, saying, 'Go and completely destroy those wicked people, the Amalekites; make war on them until you have wiped them out.' 19 Why did you not obey the LORD ? Why did you pounce on the plunder and do evil in the eyes of the LORD ?"

20 "But I did obey the LORD," Saul said. "I went on the mission the LORD assigned me. I completely destroyed the Amalekites and brought back Agag their king. 21 The soldiers took sheep and cattle from the plunder, the best of what was devoted to God, in order to sacrifice them to the LORD your God at Gilgal."

Again, Saul tries to cover up the fact that he didn't fully obey God, as if obeying Him partially is considered full obedience. It isn't. We might pride ourselves that we are obedient to God in certain areas of our lives, but when we know we are being disobedient in other areas, we are fooling ourselves to think that God is still pleased with us. He's wanting a heart that is fully His, (2 Chron 16:9) "For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him."

22 But Samuel replied:
"Does the LORD delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the voice of the LORD ?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.

23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the LORD,
he has rejected you as king."

These aren't light words. I mean, we go from a softer word like 'disobedience' to suddenly its being called 'rebellion' and being likened to divination. And because of it Saul is being rejected by God as the king. Wow! All because .....

24"I have sinned. I violated the LORD's command and your instructions. I was afraid of the people and so I gave in to them."

(Interestingly, the descendents of King Agag are still enemies to be reckoned with later in scripture. King Xerxes honored Haman son of Hammedatha, the Agagite (Esther 3:1)....that's the descendent of the King Agag that King Saul didn't put to death with all the other Amalekites. If Saul had fully obeyed, then Esther wouldn't have been fighting with that same enemy years later. Is it that way in our own lives? If we don't follow God's instructions fully, maybe we are re-battling the enemies that were already supposed to have been annihilated? )

A pleasing aroma is also from a life poured out in love. Just as Christ poured out His love for us in that He gave up His very life so that we could be restored to right relationship with the Father, so we ought to be pouring out our lives with love for all those around us, that they too can be reconciled with the Father.

I fall so short. But the mercies of God that are new every morning, gives me another day in which to allow Holy Spirit to produce more and more fruit in me, of which love is the greatest.

Question for You: Are you battling enemies today that God specifically instructed you to annihilate a long time ago?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

More Than A Hundred Posts

I did it, and I actually didn't even notice. I passed a milestone. 100 Posts.

Well, I really came here tonight to post a few preggo pics Rauchelle just took of me tonight. I am officially 23 weeks into this pregnancy, which is more than half-way even for a slow baker like me

Surrounded with LOVE

It's now become a family joke it seems, that we have to stick out our tongue. Don't ask me why, because I don't know why. But I did learn it from Layne and Rauchelle! Honestly.

I like this photo. Different than just standing there like a moron, not sure what to do with my hands.

Thanks, Rauchelle, for the photo shoot and the great backdrop. You are AWESOME!

Question for You: Do you do weekly photo-shoots of your preggo belly?

Dr Mercola interviews Dr Russell Blaylock about Vaccines (4 of 4)

Dr Mercola interviews Dr Russell Blaylock about Vaccines (3 of 4)

Dr Mercola interviews Dr Russell Blaylock about Vaccines (2 of 4)

in which Dr Blaylock includes a discussion on vaccinations for pregnant women and the danger for their unborn child.

Dr Mercola interviews Dr Russell Blaylock about Vaccines

The Actual Point of Pt Michaud

We usually just go to the sandy beach we call Pt Michaud. It's our favorite beach around here. But this day Everette and Rauchelle took some of the older of the younger dc for a hike out to the point with our friend from Austria, Thomas.

The gnarly trees of the eastern coast. Very stunted and thick.

Thomas, 70+ yo

The Point

Rauchelle, Danaka, Mitchell, Maret, Toveli & Gaelyn

You are my Sunshine, My only Sunshine!!

Question for You: Where is your favorite beach?

Cape Breton Nature

Waves at our beach during Hurricane Bill the end of August, which was only a tropical storm by the time it reached us.

One of my favorite men (Mitch) with one of my favorite creatures

The dc know that mama likes frogs (they are SSoooooo cute) so they are always calling me out to come see.

The Great GATSBY is my sister and brother-in-laws dog, and great companion to the children out on the acreage.

We see beautiful sunrises and sunsets from this house and property.

Question for You: Have you ever been in the midst of a disasterous hurricane, or a tornado?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Bold Love

This is my favorite video with Todd White so far. He shows how simple it is to bring the Kingdom of Heaven into the earthly realm, where God's love for all mankind is shown through signs & wonders & miracles.

You'll notice that Todd isn't out proselytizing for a particular church. He is sharing God's love for the purpose of sharing God's love! How simple is that?

I admire Todd. Everette and I met him last year in Lakeland. He just loves God so much. He's only been a Christian for a few years, but he's taken God at His Word. The Word says that signs and wonders shall follow us. So Todd has that expectation....and the signs and wonders follow.

Check the video from Extreme Prophetic out right here.

Question for You: Have you been the eye-witness to a miracle?

Barefoot and Pregnant

I'm wondering where exactly that phrase came from. Any ideas?

My idea is that a barefooted person would be grounded to the earth, thereby more likely to be healthy. A healthy woman is more likely to be fertile. And being grounded would be definitely healthy for both her and her unborn baby.

Friday, September 18, 2009

False Trust in Inoculations

I know people that put alot of faith in the level (count) of antibodies one has to a specific disease. For example, if you as a woman have a count of 21 against rubella, then when you are pregnant you are considered safe to be out in public, particularly with children, who might be contagious with rubella (German measles). This disease is considered particularly nasty for pregnant women because it can be passed on to their unborn child and result in deformities such as blindness, and even death. However, I think there really is a false security in those antibody numbers. A woman whose antibody count is only a 2 is counseled not to be around crowds of people, particularly where there might be young children, for she is considered to not have enough antibodies to protect her and her unborn from the potential threat of rubella.

So the theory about antibodies goes something like this.....

Antibodies are proteins that defend the body from an invasion of harmful germs. They are produced by our body when there is a threat of invasion. The threat stimulates the production of antibodies to fight off and kill the invaders. So, if you have been in contact with a disease your body will produce antibodies against it. Once you've developed antibodies, it is believed that in the future you will be immune to ever getting the disease.

Vaccines are meant to fool our immune system into thinking that it actually has been in contact with a disease and successfully recovered from it. This is supposedly accomplished by the inoculation because it contains a small amount of the killed or attenuated (chemically altered) viruses and bacteria to activate your immune system into a fight. When the antibodies are produced, it is believed that this results in immunity. After all, if we got the measles and recovered from it, we would never get measles again.

Scientists saw this as a way to gain without pain! You wouldn't need to get the actual disease. Rather you could get an injection which would trick your body into producing the antibodies without you suffering the symptoms of the disease, and give immunity from the disease in the future.

Now, this theory has never been proven. Almost a century ago it was shown that antibodies are only 1 component of the immune system, and that they aren't even the most significant!

And the public's most recent concerns regarding vaccines centers around the swine flu vaccine, of which there is absolutely no scientific evidence demonstrating that it provides any real-world protection against the circulating H1N1 virus. While we can agree that they might produce antibodies, "as people who have studied vaccine effectiveness already know, the mere existence of vaccine-induced antibodies doesn't directly translate into functional, real-world immunity! Vaccines are often, in effect, fabricated immunity that often don't provide practical immune defense in the real world.
The existence of antibodies against illnesses simply indicates a person has had exposure to a disease - NOT immunity." (The Health Ranger, Mike Adams)

This is why there can be 'outbreaks' of disease that hit fully vaccinated people whose blood work would 'say' that they were immune and yet they got sick anyways. So in reality, vaccine induced immunity DOES NOT WORK!

Question for You: Have you gotten a disease for which you have been inoculated?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Holy Experience

I found a blogger the other day, a fellow homeschooling mom of many named Ann Voskamp. Ann has a way with words, and a heart laid bare. Such beauty and honesty she portrays in her blogs.

I'd like you to check her blog out, and especially Of Brokenness, Memories, and Fresh Starts. This is poignant and pertinent to what is commonly referred to as Rosh Hashana, or The Feast of Trumpets. It starts tomorrow evening (as does Shabbat).

The Feast of Trumpets traditionally features apples dipped in honey, to signify the sweetness of the upcoming year. And the challah for Shabbat that is usually oblong, is braided circular like a crown, remembering God's Kingship. Well, in a Jewish Cook Book (baking) that I have Danaka and I found a challah with apple pieces. We aren't big on fruit in our baking but I think we'll give this one a try tomorrow. And Mommy-brain has to remember to make it like a wreath or crown. I'm excited.

Like I mentioned, its the Feast of Trumpets. Our shofar is heard occasionally around here, and the children love to blow their brains out over it!! I don't bother (well, occasionally I give it another try) because I've never gotten a good sound out of it, yet. Most of my children must get their musical talents from their father.

Be sure to read Ann's (without an 'e') blog as she'll give more details about The Feast of Trumpets.

Question for You: How do you feel when you hear a shofar being blown?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Building a Patio

This is the kind of work Mitchell loves to do around here. And fortunately, his dad enjoys his help. Those arm muscles continue to get stronger, and he'll be very proficient with a hammer in no time, just like his dad.

It always warms my heart when I see 'my guys' doing manual labour. I sometimes fall in love with Everette all over again when I see his muscles lifting heavy stuff like walls, or cutting down trees, carrying armfuls of firewood, you stuff.

Question for You: What makes you fall in love all over again?

Silly Words at Our House

One or more of the children have used these 'words' repeatedly for hard-for-them-to-pronounce English words. Some are far too cute to forget. I won't embarrass anybody in particular by connecting names with the mistake ;)

parsimmon : Parmesan
sgetti : spaghetti
fezzers : feathers
relish : licorice
flushy : slushie
baby suit : bathing suit
I forgive up! : I give up!
drizzler : a whole body vibrator
nake : snake
baff : bath
Crocket's of Narnia : The Chronicles of Narnia
movie : smoothie
hamgerber: hamburger
sangwidge: sandwich
pOOter : computer
plano: piano
hockerdoctor: helicopter

Question for You: Can you add to the list?

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Taking Showers Can Make You Ill, But Dry Skin Brushing is a Healthy Way to Get Clean

Bacteria that belong to the same family as TB, might be lurking in your shower head, and may make those with compromised immune systems sick! Yikes!

Read a BBC report

I know that many people prefer to have a shower over a bath, like my husband who thinks its gross to sit in ones own dirt!! But, there's another way that's actually healthy for you. Because lets face it, often you aren't really dirty, you are just wanting to feel clean.

In it's different forms its been used for thousands of years around the world. The Greeks, Japanese and American Indians are known to have practiced this to keep healthy. Supposedly the Comanche Indians took sand from the Texas river bottoms and used it to scrub their skin with. It's simple, virtually free, and definitely chemically free for both you and the environment. It can help clear away cellulite and give you supple skin, even tightening skin for those who have alot of weight to lose but don't want the saggy look (who does??) And its really healthy for your entire body, not only for your skin but most importantly for your lymphatic (immune) system. You can't beat that, particularly with the flu season approaching and all the media scare about H1N1.

The practice is called Dry Skin Brushing. Here's some info, but I really like The Health Ranger's article Dry Skin Brushing: A Natural Way to Detox There are differing opinions as to the order of body parts to brush first, although the 'experts' seem to be saying what The Health Ranger and Teresa Tapp are saying (starting with the palm of the hands, etc, and always brushing toward the heart to aid circulation and lymphatic drainage).

Teresa Tapp with T-Tapp has a handle-less natural brush (perfect for travel) along with simple instructions, an instructional DVD, and other products to help flush out your lymphatic system and build strength to your immunity.

I personally don't agree that the dry skin brushing always needs to be followed by a shower. The intent is to wash off any flaky skin. Whatever you do, definitely do not use chemical laden soaps/cleaners.

I think the western 'audience' is addicted to showering. (When you've done a thorough dry skin brush, your skin is cleaner than you used to be just having a shower!! Like Scandinavians who do the sauna to sweat, and then do a rough towel rub instead of a shower, although some also jump into cold fresh water, without soaps, but the purpose for this is the health of the circulatory system)

You might like the feeling of the hot/cold water over your body, but first let the water run a bit from the showerhead to clean out at least some of the bacteria that might be there, and certainly don't let it rain down on your face when it first starts to run. Soaps aren't necessary, and its actually better for you and the environment to skip the cleaners. If you must, use natural products or better yet make your own simple natural recipes, saving money and packaging.

Question for You: Do you do skin brushing?

Monday, September 14, 2009


I've got to tell you about a fitness program called T-Tapp that Everette and I just started doing 2+ weeks ago, and we are so excited about the quick results. I read testimony after testimony at the T-Tapp site but now we have our own testimony.

You know how you read all these online testimonies or hear them on TV, but you don't know if it's all lies. They could be paid to say what they say.

Well, those of you who know Everette and I will know our situation and we trust that you'll know we aren't lying. This is our true "story".

We started T-Tapping about 2.5 weeks ago but didn't take our initial measurements until August 31/09 when I was 20 weeks pregnant. Of course we are expecting body parts to be 'enlarging' on my pregnant body, and my friends know I can get pretty big in pregnancy. By now I usually look more than 6 months pregnant, and by 6 months I look full-term. I'm confident it'll be different with this pregnancy, and I think that T-Tapp will be an integral part of that.

Ok, so here's some basic numbers for Everette, changes made in just 2 weeks of losing FAT!! We haven't changed anything else, just T-Tapping a few times a week. Honest!!
He's lost 1/2 inch in chest, 7/8 inch in waist, 3/4 inch in the hips. I think that's awesome!!! So, that's 2 1/8 inches overall in 2 weeks!! He's fitting in some of his favorite (Tilley) pants he bought over 7 years ago when we lived in Campbell River. And he's down a couple holes in his belt.

And now for preggo Karen. We'd expect at least my waist and bust to be going up in size, although many of us are putting pregnancy pounds on all around. But here's my numbers after 2 weeks of T-Tapping.

I've actually gone down 5/8 inch in the bust, down 5/8 inch in the hips, only gone up 1/4 inch in waist, down 1/4 inch and 1/2 inch in my thighs, and even down 1/4 inch in my calves. Total inch loss (excluding the growing belly)for me in 2 weeks then is 2 1/2 inches. (Everette hasn't kept track of all the same body parts as I have)

We started with the Basic Workout Plus (presently on sale), listening to the 90 minute seminar to understand the foundation of Teresa's philosophy, which that in itself was amazing and significantly different than any fitness program I've heard of. She doesn't just talk about how to do a move, but why to do it like that. The How & the Whys. I like that.

One of the main things that interested me was when Teresa Tapp (the founder/inventor of the program)was saying that with this program, the more fit you become the less time you actually have to invest at doing the exercises. Have you ever heard anything like that? That's always been one thing I never could understand when hearing about working out at the gym and getting fit--- that it took more and longer workouts to even maintain over the years. So, if somebody is already spending an hour a day 6 times a week at the gym to stay fit, how much will they have to be spending there in 5 years from now just to maintain? They have to work harder and longer to see the same benefits. Who has time like that to spend on fitness??? As far as I'm concerned, I don't even want to spend that amount of time, because I don't enjoy it in the first place.

I can't even start to explain Teresa Tapp's program, but it really isn't about losing weight (we don't have a scale so we don't know those numbers, but that doesn't matter because we're more interested in losing the inches anyways) but about total body alignment, getting all your systems in the proper place and pumping & flowing. Like your nervous system, the lymphatic system, your skeletal system, and your digestive system.

So, we followed the instructional video for 4 days in a row, feeling muscles we forgot even existed (like back of the neck where fat gathers). Then we've basically been doing the Basic Workout Plus 3 times a week. It's less than 15 mins a day. Occasionally we've done the Walk Away the Inches instead, or another day of the week in addition. We aren't doing any other fitness program, and haven't even been fitting in our regular walk to the post office because Rauchelle hasn't been around to babysit. We credit the inch loss solely to T-Tapping. It's amazing.

Teresa really supports dry skin brushing which I've used off and on over the years but after listening to her educational DVD I've starting doing it daily like a good girl ;) and I like the feeling of it. I know I'm doing my body good, and taking care of baby at the same time.

Question for You: Do you have an exercise program you are thrilled with?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Putting Swine Flu in Perspective

This is a short video (under 4 mins) of Congressman Ron Paul (who is also a medical doctor) who gives his thoughts on the swine flu issue.

Retired Vax Scientist Would NEVER Vaccinate His Children

This is an amazing (though sorta long) interview of a retired vaccination scientist from the USA. He was once on the side of making vaccinations. After more than a decade of being in the business, he started to question the efficacy and the health implications connected with inoculations, and today he speaks out against them.

While reading the interview, I was recalling an incident that happened with us as a family around the vaccination issue.

I was pregnant with our 6th dc, and Everette was working out-of-province. We were about to have our first Japanese exchange student stay with us for 2 weeks. But Danaka, who was 5.5 yo at the time, woke up with a mild rash all over her trunk. Not sure what this rash was, I thought it best to have it diagnosed by a MD so we could better inform the lady in charge of the student exchange program, in case the rash ended up being something contagious. Our family doctor was away on summer holidays, so we saw an unfamiliar to us Dr. (I always prefer our Dr, because he knows what kind of mother I am ....not a worry wart..... so he takes me very seriously when I have a concern) So, this Dr takes a look at Danaka's rash, starts verbally eliminating diseases such as rubella, etc.......until he asks me "She is up to date on her vaccinations, correct??" at which I said, "We don't vaccinate." At that moment, what had not looked to him as possibly rubella, all of a sudden it became a possibility. No Kidding!! He actually said to me, "Well, in that case (of not vaccinating) it COULD be rubella."

Listen, it either looks like it or it doesn't look like it. It has nothing to do with whether one is vaccinated or not.

You see, he was of the opinion that vaccinations provide protection against the disease, and therefore, believing at first that she was vaccinated then there was no way that the rash she was displaying could be rubella. But when he got the info that she wasn't vaccinated, and therefore she wasn't protected against the disease, that same rash could now 'look' like rubella.


Question for You: What's your take on vaccinations?

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Not Cut Out For Religion

I ask you, what’s the answer, and you just ask me questions,
and I’m like, “hello, I thought you were God?”
Can’t I just download you, pay-as-I-go to decode you -
a quick fix listen on my i-pod?

I ask you, what’s the answer, and you say, “where does the wind blow?”
Well, if Dylan couldn’t find it, then I won’t get too far.
What’s with all this mystery? How can you say, “follow me”
when I don’t even know where you are?

Your religion needs a makeover, you’ve got to de-clutter.
Make it softer, gooier and spreadable like butter.
I need a faith I can talk about and not sound like a nutter.
You ought to be easy to follow.

Like, a hop-on-and-off open-top bus ride,
a manual with A to Z tabs down the side,
I want a sat-nav path to heaven, not a Lonely Planet guide.
I wish you were easy to follow.

I want a Roman road map to instant glory
a happy-ending-ever-after chick lit story
and you just tell me another foggy allegory
featuring corn and sheep and wine and clay pots.
What are you like? Do you want followers or not?
Far be it from me to tell you what’s what,
but if you did make it easier I’m sure you’d get a lot
more believers, Jesus.

Give me bite-sized thoughts in a faith shape sorter,
No more spilt blood or living water,
just a pint-sized god who’s a straight talker.
Make it easy to follow.

I want fruit-flavoured shots of the Holy Spirit,
bite-sized, trite truths in Boyband lyrics
“love” and “above” – yeah, that should fill it.
Make it easy to follow.

I want facts on a plate - don’t want to have to question any,
artificial roses every 14th of February.
I want simple faith – blind if necessary.
Why aren’t you easy to follow?

You say, “you are not my servant, now you are my friend”.
You say, “I will be with you until the bitter end”.
And I’m like, “why bitter? – I wanted happiness on prescription.
Isn’t that the whole point of getting religion?
And besides, friendship’s harder – can’t I just buy the subscription?”
Can’t you be easy to follow?

Give me a clear-cut structure, not a friendship’s fragilities,
favourable rights with few responsibilities.
I could follow that plan – yeah – religiously.
That would be easy to follow.

I want three steps to beauty from a teenage advice mag;
Ben and Jerry’s Triple chocolate straight of the ice bag;
ethically traded but with a Primark price-tag -
I could say Amen to those.

I want box-up beliefs wrapped in tissue-paper
presented by Fearne Cotton, and voiced by Tom Baker,
with a hands-free contract to contact the Maker
available from Tesco’s.

I want Quicktime cut-price broadband access.
Simple principles, easily practiced.
Directly transactional prayers - the fact is,
my time is precious, so why should I work?
Why should treasure always require a search?

I want a message that’s acceptable without having to plead it,
that’ll make people instantly realise they need it.
Yeah, thanks for the Bible – but have you tried to read it?
You need to be easy to follow.

I want all the answers set out in a paperback
of less than fifty pages, in the buy-now-read-it-later rack
I’ll skim it on the train down to visit Auntie Kate and back -
nice and easy to follow.

Everyone will warm to its convenient slimness.
It’ll be easily digestible and provoke a certain tingliness,
and every answer will be one sentence long, universally applicable, and in English.
That would be easy to follow.

You see, I think you need to focus and refine your vision,
if you want to market the brand they call “Christian”.
I say, “give me clarity”, you say, “will you marry me?”
With all due respect, Jesus, I don’t think you were cut out for religion.

by Jude Simpson
You can find out more about Jude and her writings over here.

Question for You: Do you write poetry? What kind of things do you write about the most?

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Boat Building (and planes and bridges)

This is a boat that Mitchell built last year and was floating late one night in the ocean (in our backyard). I just found this photo while Rauchelle was showing me some of her photo albums on Facebook.

I know its old, but I still think Mitchell did an awesome job. I love how the white sails look so stark against the black night.

Boat building is still one of his 'loves', but more recently he's gotten into building bridges with K'Nex. He's definitely into engineering of some sort. Oh, and all the paper planes around the house. I've never seen paper planes glide as nicely and as far as Mitchell's do. He has a great and glorious future!!

Question for You: What hobbies get built around your house?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

About some of the books I've recently read

Everette borrowed some books from friends of ours who have a real love for Jews and Israel. And they know that we do, too. Maybe not to the extent that our friends do, but its one of the areas that continues to change in our lives.

So, I spent a Shabbat & Sunday reading "Betrayed!" by Stan Telchin. It's about how a man who was "successful, 50 and Jewish" handled the situation when his 21 year old daughter told him that she believes in Jesus.

The daughter, Judy asks her dad Stan to "just ....find out more about this. You don't have to believe what I believe or believe me, but you're an intelligent man. Read the Bible for yourself and find out whether it's true or not.....It's either true or it's false. If He isn't the Messiah, you'll know it. And if He is, you'll know it. But read the Bible for yourselves and come to your own conclusions."

Stan couldn't deny the positive change that had occured in his daughter's life, and because of their close family relationship he rose to the challenge, even though he assumed the Bible was anti-Semitic. "And when I read it I'll be able to prove to her that she is absolutely wrong."

He thought it might take him to "read the Bible in 10 or 12 hours, maybe four or five nights" but ended up diligently studying for endless months. And in the end, he too believed that Jesus, the Jew, was the Messiah, the fulfillment to 456 prophecies concerning the Messiah.

What amazed me was a common thread I've seen in many religious peoples' lives, whether they are Catholic, Protestant, Muslim or Jew. They believe as they are told, and really don't even read for themselves the religious books they supposedly follow.


I've also read "Once An Arafat Man" by Tass Saada, the true story of how a PLO sniper found a new life.

"At age seventeen, Tass Saada was carrying a high powered Simonov rifle. He had run away from home to become a PLO sniper and chauffeur for Arafat.

"His experience growing up as a refugee in Saudi Arabia had taught him to hate. Like many Palestinians, his hatred -- and his rifle -- was aimed squarely at Israel.

"This is more than the story of a Palestinian refugee making something good of his life in America. It's a story of the ultimate triumph of love over hatred, reconciliation over persistent divisions. It's a story that can inspire us all to overcome the divisions and conflicts in our own lives."

There are alot of memories I'm sure that Tass would like to erase completely from his memory. Enough is told in this story to get a picture of what it was like for him, as a killing machine, without being overly gory, and understanding what fed his hatred for Israel.

Question for You: What books have you read recently?

Monday, September 7, 2009

The Story of Stuff

This is a simple video about economy, production, consumerism, etc. It just might change the way you look at the stuff in your own life.

It's about 20 mins long, so some of your children can sit and watch. Annie Leonard talks a tad fast, but she covers alot of info. At least you can always replay what you and your children might have missed.

This can easily open up conversation about consumerism, protection of the planet, recycling, and how do we play a part in all of it.

God's Word calls us to be good stewards of the earth. Are we doing a good job? Of all the people of the world, Christians ought to be the best stewards. Do we rise to the job?

Let's take steps.....even baby steps, towards being better stewards of the earth.

Question for You: What do you do to simplify your life, or to leave less of a carbon footprint?

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Boar Bristle Hairbrush

Have any of you given the boar bristle hairbrush a try, particularly with giving up using shampoo or other cleaners on your hair? I'd love to hear your comments about it.

It's been months now since tossing aside the shampoo for the whole family. Rauchelle was commenting just a couple days ago how wonderful it feels. I'd think that if any of our family had an issue about not using shampoo, it would be Rauchelle. She has the thickest, longest, waviest and hardest to deal with hair of us all. But she likes it. And we're thinking about how nice it would be to travel without shampoo and conditioner leaking!!

Other than I need a fresh haircut, my hair is softer and shinier since not using cleaners (I was happy with the baking soda wash and vinegar rinse before this, and thought my hair was softer then previous) but I'm much happier with the simpler way of just using water and the boar bristle brush.

You check out my other blog post

Question for You: Do you have a Hair Care System that is healthy and environmentally friendly?

Saturday, September 5, 2009