Sunday, April 26, 2009

Going Native

We profess to be strangers and pilgrims, seeking after a country of our own, yet we settle down in the most un-stranger-like fashion, exactly as if we were quite at home and meant to stay as long as we could. I don't wonder apostolic miracles have died. Apostolic living certainly has." — Amy Carmichael

I read this quote somewhere last week, and I just haven't been able to get it off my mind. I feel like God has kept it close to me because it is something I must give attention to in my own life. I have often marveled how so many "Christians" will profess that they try to live their lives as close to the example of Christ as they can and yet their day to day lives are after the same fashion that the world dictates is "normal". Striving for the newest car, latest fashion, coolest toy and the most profitable job is the name of the game, they play right along side everyone else. These "christians" may have once been earnestly seeking their heavenly home, but at some point they went native, giving up their journey home and settling down to grow roots in this world.
But when you stop and take a look at the lifestyle that Christ lived along with His apostles and eventually the early church, our lives are vastly different!
They lived with nothing except the clothes on their back and the Word on their lips. Spreading the message was all that they cared about advancing. Though they might never have left the town of their birth and worked the same trade their entire life, they lived as strangers and they counted years on this earth as simply a mission trip, here only to praise their Father and brings others the news. And what was their reward? What was their driving motivations? Their deeper understanding of God's Truth and the promise of heaven. Did they require more? Did they live out each day begrudging their lack of earthly goods and worldly favor? Their testimonies shout a resounding NO.

I think often we confuse the idea of "pilgrim and Stranger" with Tourist. Tourist are strangers who are visiting to see the sites, experience the local culture and reap every benefit that the land has to offer. We are not called to be tourist, but Pilgrims. Pilgrims are strangers on a journey to somewhere else and that destination is their goal. They are not taking a "road trip" either. They do what they must so that they can continue on and get closer and closer to their own country, bringing others home with them to their Promise Land. I am not in any way trying to say that we must live as homeless people (although Christ did in fact) and we must beg bread and give no thought to care our families. You can live this "pilgrim" life in whatever situation you are in. It is not solely a physical living situation. It is a spiritual one as well. In the same way that you should not spend your years striving to fill your home with the most expensive things, Deck yourself with rich jewels and finest apparel, you must also abstain from focusing all your time on YOUR dreams, YOUR opinions and YOUR earthly comfort and wisdom. Is your Life about having as smooth or (fleshly) enjoyable a "journey" as you might, or is it about advancing the kingdom, encouraging and edifying others, walking as closely to Christ as possible until you reach your own country?

For myself, I have to make a conscience effort to examine and reexamine my daily driving goals. It is so easy for me, as a young and single adult girl to place my hopes for the future and the acquiring of the means to gain it before the Journey I am on. As most of you know, my fondest future plans are of my own homestead. My Cabin I want to build, my farm I want to tend and my dream style of life I want to live can so quickly become my focus. Yes, a person of the world might look at my plans and say that the simple and minimalistic lifestyle I dream of seems basic and very unworldly. But it would still be as wrong as any other if it, and not my journey home, is my focus. If I would instead live my life focusing on Him, spreading HIs word and looking forward to Heaven, rather than worrying over my earthly desires (no matter how innocent they might be), then I leave that open for God to bless me with the Life HE wants for me. And I believe that the greatest part of this is that it would no longer matter if I attained all the things I once hoped for myself, because if He is alive and working within me, I will only feel fulfilled by His perfect Will!

This of course is very easy to say. The tests that come, when you dare to examine and correct your path will be tough and on going. But I know that By faith, I can endure because My Father made me this promise. I am always encouraged when I read the list of the Faithful ones of the bible in Hebrews!
There is one verse, which I have meditated on that I want to be true of me.
Hebrews 11:13 "These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off, and were persuaded of [them], and embraced [them], and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth."
Now when you read this, it is actually talking about Abraham, Sarah and the Children of Israel that did not reach the promise land in their lives. But I think this should be a mirror of our lives, We will not see Heaven here on earth, but we know the promise. And when we are persuaded of it, embrace it and see it afar off, we truly will live as strangers and pilgrims.

I would earnestly encourage you to examine your focus, and whether you are "settled here" or truly a stranger, earnestly seeking your arrival home.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Six Random Things About Me...

Okay- My friend Michelle tagged me for this game on her blog.

So here are the rules:
Link to the person who tagged you.
Post the rules on your blog.
Write Six Random Things about yourself.
“Tag” a few other people at the bottom of your post……
And leave comments on their blogs, letting them know they’ve been tagged.
Let the person who tagged you know when you’ve written the post.

Six Random Things About Me (Sarah)
1. I have 2 parakeets named Phineas(green&yellow) and Zion(white&lavender)
2. I have a serious dislike for any dish containing relish or sweet salad cubes (YUCK!)
3.I kept a journal of every single day in the year 2005
4. I ran over 2 chickens in one day, in 2 separate incidents. Yep.
5. I have been pen pals and Best Friends with Sam T. for almost 11 years and I have never met her, even though she lives just a few states way.
6. I am planning a trip to Alaska in 2011. Yes!

I have tagged:

Serah H.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Random News...

It has been a lot longer than I had intended since I last posted anything! I have been blessed with a good flow of orders this month, So I have had less time to devote to blogging and such. Not that I am complaining mind you! NO! I am so grateful for them as the months of November and December were pretty much dead as far as the site goes. I kept telling myself that it was just the time of year when everyone else is buying for others and not worrying about their own wardrobe. Any how, things are flowing again. I have spent the last few days sewing some things for a new customer's 6 month old girl! She is adorable and I have been so enjoying making these little bitty items! I have also made a Doll that is the cutest thing ever! I will post some pics of it on here for you all to see. She is such a DOLL! ( Okay, yes, pun intended :)

I have plans of adding Broadfall pants for men to my list of items. I made Dad several pair in the last few months and I feel comfortable making them now. I have found a source of material for them too so I hope to get that going soon!

Haley and I received the news yesterday from a friend of ours, telling us that her husband's 90-something father passed away. He lived at the Nursing home where Haley worked for a very long time. He is now, thankfully, resting with Jesus, as he was a christian man. Haley and I will be attending the funeral this week, so please keep his family in your prayers!
In other news....
Olivia started her first job (working at the same Vet as Erin). It has been hard not having her here with me during the daytime. I really miss her :( But she is enjoying her new work and I am so glad! In my last post I mentioned how Erin brought home an orange cat from the vet. Well, Olivia brought home a new one, this time a little bitty kitty! He too is Orange with green eyes, and we have dubbed him Ollie.
He is very sweet and playful and Harvey has adopted him nicely :)
Not much else to report right now, but I did not want to go much longer without pos
I did want to share this pic of me, and one of Haley and our neighbor's donkey. We met Him today on our early morning stroll. We loved on him for a while and I snapped the pics with my camera phone. He lives with 3 other donkeys and a whole bunch of Long Horn Cattle.

Well, That's all Folks!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Happy Birthday and Harvey

Good Morning all!
January 15 was a very good day from my family for 2 reasons that are totally unconnected:
First and most importantly, it was my Dad's 50th Birthday, and what a birthday it was for him! Every one at work remembered and called, emailed or stopped by to wish him a good one. This is a big deal because there have been birthdays where just a few remembered. SO it was a nice surprise for him :) They had a big meeting during the morning and one sweet lady brought a cake for him! Haley ordered some balloons and flowers to be delivered and to Dad's surprise, a boss walked in during the meeting carrying them. Boy, was Dad shocked when he brought them over to him! They all ooo'd and ahhh'd over him and sang happy birthday! I am so glad and thankful that he was able to see just how much every one loves and cares about him. He is the most honorable man have ever known and deserves so much thanks! When celebrated with him last night here at home and Haley made him his favorite cake, German Chocolate. One of the gifts he asked for this year was that each of us memorize a Psalm. So I learned Psalm 1 and we all recited them to him after dinner. I think he was very pleased :0) All in all I think He had a good birthday and I am so glad that I am able to be part of his life!! Happy Birthday Dad!

Second Good Thing: Harvey.
Erin called Mom from the vet clinic and said, " Hey I am bringing you a surprise home!"
She walks in about 30 minutes later and I watch her walking towards Mom bedroom door with something Orange and Fuzzy behind her back! And that was the first time I saw Harvey, Our new kitty! Now, if you have ever been to my home before, then you would know that another cat is the last thing we need ( I think we have 9 total)! But Mom has, for the longest time, dreamed of having an Orange cat. So when Harvey came to the vet, needing a home, Erin knew it was meant for Mom :0) Now, Harvey is meant to be an outside Cat, but since it is freezing out right now and he has to be in a cage for a few days, Mom and Dad decided to keep him in their oversized Bathroom. ( We can't have an inside cat because Haley is SUPER allergic!)
SO Harvey is enjoying the jungle of plants mom has in her bathroom ( the ones that have to be inside in winter all stay in her bathroom!), hiding and sleeping in various large pots. He is just so precious! I can't wait for him to meet all my kitties outside and join the family!

Friday, January 9, 2009

My closet

I get a lot of emails from christian sisters out there who are making the change to a plain and simply lifestyle and more particularly, dress. They have a lot of questions and are usually seeking advice and ideas on how to make the change without having to try every style and pattern, which can really be a pain and cut in to the usually small budget.
~Obviously, all I can offer is what my own experience has been! So I thought I would write a post explaining my practical choices and why I have decided on the ones I did-

Dress and Apron-
If you open my closet right now you would find about 5 zipper-back dresses of various colors ( 3 work, 2 nice) and 2 button-front dresses ( 1 work, 1 nice). They all have elbow-length sleeves or longer. I wear these dresses year round. In the summer I push the long sleeves up and in winter I wear sweater with the elbow length sleeves. They are worn in rotation so that when a Nice one gets stained or torn, it is patched up and becomes a work dress. Now these "numbers" are not always kept consistent, That is just what I happen to have right now. There have been times when I had just one for going out and 2 for working in.
At least half of the dresses I have right now I have owned for several years.
As most of you know, my family feels that ladies should wear 2 layers for modesty according to biblical standards, so we wear full aprons over our dresses. Now, up until last year, I always made a matching apron for each dress I made, in one of three styles. I would then mix and match the dresses and aprons when I would put them on. This was not done for "style" or to in anyway give me more of a sense of choice, but just depending on what was already ironed, or was not already stained. Often times the matching apron would wear out well before the dress, so I would have to wear another apron over the dress to go out. This often made for confusion and irritation, when I could not find a suitable apron to wear with a certain dress because of color (while I do not think we should worry about looking perfect, I do think that as Christians we should at all times present ourselves in a clean, orderly way).

Then I received an order last year from a customer for a Blue dress with a black apron, instead of a matching blue. This idea set me to thinking about all the benefits to just making myself black aprons, and sticking to one style. I decided on the pullover Apron in black for many reasons:

  • The Pullover apron is the easiest to make
  • It requires the least amount of fabric
  • Black hides stains wonderfully!
  • Black can be be worn with any color!
  • Black is also very helpful in hiding certain "curves" on Ladies, making it a more modest choice

These things were more than enough to sell me on the idea. So I made myself 3 aprons and I have been very happy with the outcome! It is so nice to just grab a dress and a black apron and not have to make sure they will match and look neat and orderly.I really enjoy the real sense of comfort and modesty that comes just by wearing these aprons. There is such a joy to be found in uniformity and order!

SO I would encourage any plain sisters out there to try the black apron idea! You will love it!

( And NO this is not a sales scheme, although I am open for orders :)

Thursday, January 8, 2009


I was first introduced to MaryJane Butters and her farm when mom purchased MaryJane' first book. It was an interesting mix of all things connected to Farm girl life, from cooking, canning and gardening to Outpost living and wedding planning. While I do not agree with all the philosophies that MaryJane embraces, I do love the "farmgirl heart" that she puts into everything.
I enjoy the practical ideas and how-to's. I fell in love with her section on Outpost living ( My dream!) and I quickly preorder my copy of " MaryJane's Outpost" (a whole book devoted to the subject!) when it was released last year. She also put out a book on sewing and fiber Arts which has detailed instructions for tatting, knitting and lots more.
I was very excited about an Apron pattern featured in this book called a "fancy work apron".
Now, it is not really something that I personally would wear, but I just know it would be fun to create some of my own!
SO now that I am preparing items for the store, I thought this would be the best time to get some made! Using her drawings as a guide, I cut out several different colors and made some personal adjustments to make it my own. I will add a picture of the 2 I have finished so far.

The pattern is not exclusively made by MaryJanee, but is actually one that was rather popular in years past...

This is a blue rose fabric, hard to see clear on a camera phone!

For some reason, the blogger uploader would not load the back pitcure correctly, so it is sideways! Sorry!

This pink one has a tiny floral print on it!

Friday, January 2, 2009


Good evening friends...

SO we are 2 days into 2009, and I have to say that it is not shaping up very well :P
It has been raining and rather gloomy! Then on top of that Olivia woke up with a cold this morning! But, we are trying to keep up our spirits in spite of the gloom and looking forward to a very eventful year!
Finally we have set a date for the official opening of our Saturday store! We will open on January 24Th, the Lord willing! We will then be open one Saturday a month, maybe more depending on the response. It is very exciting because we been dreaming, planning and talking about this for a long time. For now we will be setting up in the newly-enclosed workshop, but eventually we will have a permanent setup in the old cabin (once we get the floor replaced). I still have a lot to get made before then. I am making several different styles of aprons, Pioneer Bonnets, Embroidered pillowcases, handbags, yo yo table runners and doilies, hand-dipped candle and many other items.

We are also preparing for Homesteaders Weekend which will be the last week of March! I am so excited about this event! I will be doing most of the menu-planning and cooking, and I am doing the session on the Homestead Pantry. In Preparation doing a lot of research and learning so much!
It is going to be an incredible event. We are nearing our max number and so far we have folks from 5 different states! What a wonderful chance to meet and share testimonies and experiances!


I really love making new resolutions every new year! It's like I have been handed this clean page and I get a chance to pre-write a few things. I will be the first to admit that I do not keep all my resolutions every year. I always start working on my list by early December and try to keep it short and be logical about it. I was looking over some lists from previous years and noticed that I list several things almost every year.
All of them make mention to:
  • Memorize such and such portion of the bible
  • Read through the bible in a year
  • Learn to play the mandolin
  • Eat healthier!
The sad part is that I have not yet mastered any of these 4 things.
The mandolin is still sitting in my room and I know the very same 3 cords I learning the first week I had it. While I do read my bible regularly, I have not yet managed to read through it start to finish in the alloted time of a year. I have memorized some small portions of scripture, I have not completed any one goal I have made. And finally, I have no real excuse for not eating healthier. I am getting smarter about making good choices and which foods are good for me personally, but I am not yet where I need to be.

So, These are settled into their place once again on my New Years List.
Along side them I have noted these:
  • Update and post on my sites at least once a week!
  • Do some major experimenting with Cob building this year!
  • Get more organized!

I pray that 2009 will be a year that brings you and your family closer to Christ and to a deeper understanding of His love!