Monday, November 18, 2013

Praise His Mountains Majesty

Let them praise the name of the Lord,
For He commanded and they were created.

He also established them forever and ever;

He made a decree which shall not pass away.

Praise the Lord from the earth,
You great sea creatures and all the depths;

Fire and hail, snow and clouds;

Stormy wind, fulfilling His word;

Mountains and all hills;

Fruitful trees and all cedars;

Beasts and all cattle;
Creeping things and flying fowl;

Kings of the earth and all peoples;

Princes and all judges of the earth;
Both young men and maidens;
Old men and children.

Let them praise the name of the Lord,
For His name alone is exalted;
His glory is above the earth and heaven.

And He has exalted the horn of His people,
The praise of all His saints—
Of the children of Israel,
A people near to Him.

And He has exalted the horn of His people,
The praise of all His saints—
Of the children of Israel,
A people near to Him.

Praise the Lord
Psalm 148

Friday, July 26, 2013

Remembering Hanson

Today is a day of Remembrance.  A little boy with cherub cheeks and sparkling eyes, has died.  Hanson, one of the Lost Boys from the Mulligan Stew fundraisers is now in the arms of Jesus Christ.  This is his baby picture.  I don't know if he was "adoptable" when the first picture was taken, but for years, he was overlooked as he lay in his pink shirt and overalls.


Dear Hanson, and so many other died alone and waiting.

Each of these children, and one more that we know of since, has died, waiting and alone, just this year.    Some were beloved and had families striving to come as soon as humanly possible, some did not. There are see the rest we are aware of, visit the Memorial Page of Reece's Rainbow.  There are many, many other children in institutions around the globe who pass without ever being listed or loved. Only Christ knows them all.  

This is why we advocate. This is why we yell.  This is why we grieve when families struggle, why we fundraise all the time and why we celebrate when they finally reach their homes.  This work we do is life saving.

As we remember Hanson.....

.....let us not become weary in doing good (Galatians 6:9).

Remembrances can be made to the funds of other Lost Boys, for whom it is not yet too late.

DagmarPearsonGrady and Porter

Click their names to see their precious faces and drop a few dollars into their ransom funds.  In Christ's name, please pray for these boys as they survive each day. Pray that they, too, would be chosen and spared a death alone and unloved.

God sets the solitary in families;
He brings out those who are bound into prosperity;
But the rebellious dwell in a dry land. Psalm 68:6

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Our Lives, Our Fortunes, Our Sacred Honor

Our Lives, Our Fortunes, Our Sacred Honor
Even before the list was published, the British marked down every member of Congress suspected of having put his name to treason. All of them became the objects of vicious manhunts. Some were taken. Some, like Jefferson, had narrow escapes. All who had property or families near British strongholds suffered.

Francis Lewis, New York delegate saw his home plundered—and his estates in what is now Harlem—completely destroyed by British Soldiers. Mrs. Lewis was captured and treated with great brutality. Though she was later exchanged for two British prisoners through the efforts of Congress, she died from the effects of her abuse.

William Floyd, another New York delegate, was able to escape with his wife and children across Long Island Sound to Connecticut, where they lived as refugees without income for seven years. When they came home they found a devastated ruin.

Philips Livingstone had all his great holdings in New York confiscated and his family driven out of their home. Livingstone died in 1778 still working in Congress for the cause.
Louis Morris, the fourth New York delegate, saw all his timber, crops, and livestock taken. For seven years he was barred from his home and family.

John Hart of Trenton, New Jersey, risked his life to return home to see his dying wife. Hessian soldiers rode after him, and he escaped in the woods. While his wife lay on her deathbed, the soldiers ruined his farm and wrecked his homestead. Hart, 65, slept in caves and woods as he was hunted across the countryside. When at long last, emaciated by hardship, he was able to sneak home, he found his wife had already been buried, and his 13 children taken away. He never saw them again. He died a broken man in 1779, without ever finding his family.

Dr. John Witherspoon, signer, was president of the College of New Jersey, later called Princeton. The British occupied the town of Princeton, and billeted troops in the college. They trampled and burned the finest college library in the country.

Judge Richard Stockton, another New Jersey delegate signer, had rushed back to his estate in an effort to evacuate his wife and children. The family found refuge with friends, but a Tory sympathizer betrayed them. Judge Stockton was pulled from bed in the night and brutally beaten by the arresting soldiers. Thrown into a common jail, he was deliberately starved. Congress finally arranged for Stockton's parole, but his health was ruined. The judge was released as an invalid, when he could no longer harm the British cause. He returned home to find his estate looted and did not live to see the triumph of the Revolution. His family was forced to live off charity.

Robert Morris, merchant prince of Philadelphia, delegate and signer, met Washington 's appeals and pleas for money year after year. He made and raised arms and provisions which made it possible for Washington to cross the Delaware at Trenton. In the process he lost 150 ships at sea, bleeding his own fortune and credit almost dry.

George Clymer, Pennsylvania signer, escaped with his family from their home, but their property was completely destroyed by the British in the Germantown and Brandywine campaigns.
Dr. Benjamin Rush, also from Pennsylvania , was forced to flee to Maryland. As a heroic surgeon with the army, Rush had several narrow escapes.

John Martin, a Tory in his views previous to the debate, lived in a strongly loyalist area of Pennsylvania. When he came out for independence, most of his neighbors and even some of his relatives ostracized him. He was a sensitive and troubled man, and many believed this action killed him. When he died in 1777, his last words to his tormentors were: "Tell them that they will live to see the hour when they shall acknowledge it [the signing] to have been the most glorious service that I have ever rendered to my country."

William Ellery, Rhode Island delegate, saw his property and home burned to the ground.

Thomas Lynch, Jr., South Carolina delegate, had his health broken from privation and exposures while serving as a company commander in the military. His doctors ordered him to seek a cure in the West Indies and on the voyage, he and his young bride were drowned at sea.

Edward Rutledge, Arthur Middleton, and Thomas Heyward, Jr., the other three South Carolina signers, were taken by the British in the siege of Charleston. They were carried as prisoners of war to St. Augustine, Florida, where they were singled out for indignities. They were exchanged at the end of the war, the British in the meantime having completely devastated their large landholdings and estates.
Thomas Nelson, signer of Virginia, was at the front in command of the Virginia military forces. With British General Charles Cornwallis in Yorktown, fire from 70 heavy American guns began to destroy Yorktown piece by piece. Lord Cornwallis and his staff moved their headquarters into Nelson's palatial home. While American cannonballs were making a shambles of the town, the house of Governor Nelson remained untouched. Nelson turned in rage to the American gunners and asked, "Why do you spare my home?"

They replied, "Sir, out of respect to you." Nelson cried, "Give me the cannon!" and fired on his magnificent home himself, smashing it to bits. But Nelson's sacrifice was not quite over. He had raised $2 million for the Revolutionary cause by pledging his own estates. When the loans came due, a newer peacetime Congress refused to honor them, and Nelson's property was forfeited. He was never reimbursed. He died, impoverished, a few years later at the age of 50.

Of those 56 who signed the Declaration of Independence, nine died of wounds or hardships during the war. Five were captured and imprisoned, in each case with brutal treatment. Several lost wives, sons or entire families. One lost his 13 children. Two wives were brutally treated. All were at one time or another the victims of manhunts and driven from their homes. Twelve signers had their homes completely burned. Seventeen lost everything they owned. Yet not one defected or went back on his pledged word. Their honor, and the nation they sacrificed so much to create is still intact.

And, finally, there is the New Jersey signer, Abraham Clark.
He gave two sons to the officer corps in the Revolutionary Army. They were captured and sent to that infamous British prison hulk afloat in New York Harbor known as the hell ship Jersey, where 11,000 American captives were to die. The younger Clarks were treated with a special brutality because of their father. One was put in solitary and given no food.

With the end almost in sight, with the war almost won, no one could have blamed Abraham Clark for acceding to the British request when they offered him his sons' lives if he would recant and come out for the King and Parliament. The utter despair in this man's heart, the anguish in his very soul, must reach out to each one of us down through 200 years with his answer: "No."

The 56 signers of the Declaration Of Independence proved by their every deed that they made no idle boast when they composed the most magnificent curtain line in history. "And for the support of this Declaration with a firm reliance on the protection of divine providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred honor."

Friday, June 14, 2013

Home in 2013

Here we are at the halfway point in 2013.  Can you believe that June is half over? It's been quite a year for Reece's Rainbow.  EIGHTY-NINE children have already come home this year!  What a blessing to be involved with a group that makes so many homecomings happen.

Gary 158 ODMarnie_2012This summer, I am advocating for the Horton Family.  They are bringing home Gary, a seven year old who has limb difference.  Today, they announced the happy news that Marnie will be joining their family as well!

If you remember, they adopted Sophia Grace just a little over five months ago.  She was four years old and just 10 measly pounds.  She has thrived at home and is gaining strength and weight every day!


Look at the difference LOVE makes!

hortonPlease pray for the Horton's, the children and for a speedy process.  Pray that God's hand will be apparent in this by miraculous provision throughout the entire process and that the children's hearts will be prepared for them to learn to be loved.

Monday, June 10, 2013


This morning a familiar face appeared on the beloved page, "My Family Found Me".  IRIS!!

IrisSo happy for her and her family.  She's going to be such a beloved daughter and FINALLY know the love of a mother!  Praising the Lord this morning for her.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Gifts Have Been Made

Jackson 2007The children of Russia have been denied families by their president.  He has made it clear that they will not be lifting the adoption ban in the foreseeable future.  Sadly, Abbott is stuck there, in a mental institution, most likely for the remainder of his life. I pray that a family will bring him home, but statistically, that rarely occurs there.  The special needs children are not the ones who escape through domestic adoption.

Reece's Rainbow has prayerfully made the tough decision to gift the Russian childrens' funds to children who are available for adoption.  Lives will be saved, just not Russian babies lives.  They allowed advocates to have a voice in the gifting of the funds. Abbott's funds have been given to Jackson, who is in PRC.

Jackson's fund is now at $3865.40. My first goal, besides seeing him on MFFM, will to be to round that total out to $4000. Next, we'll get him moved onto the $5000+ Moving Mountains page!  Donations can be made by check or Paypal.

UPDATE: Jackson's fund is up to $4027.40!  Please keep sharing his story!!

UPDATE: Jackson's family has found him!  Praise the Lord with me!! Visit his family's blog to follow their journey and to see NEW pictures! Once they have their FSP (Family Sponsorship Page), I will post with a link. Until then, donations can not be made.


Friday, April 5, 2013

Mulligan Stew 2013

The Mulligan Stew over at Julia's blog is an incredible blessing.  The Lord truly multiplies tiny, heartfelt offerings!


The very first child to find a family has been announced!  I know his future family and they are SO thrilled to have been able to begin this process.  Please keep them in prayer as they begin to fundraise for Sutter's homecoming.


Barton, a sweet boy who is getting close to aging out, has a $500 matching grant!  He is fifteen and only has a few more months to find a family, or he will forever sit in a cage. See the pictures here to see how he will live if  he's not found.  Even a few dollars goes a long way in easing the burden of a family.


Iris has a large fund, but no family, as of yet.  She is such a sweet child. I have seen videos of her. She's so gentle and loving!  Please consider helping spread her lovely face, so her parents find her!  She's only halfway to fully funded, so adding to her fund is also crucial.

Psalm 139:13-16

For it was You who created my inward parts;
You knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I will praise You
because I have been remarkably and wonderfully made.
Your works are wonderful,
and I know this very well.
15 My bones were not hidden from You
when I was made in secret,
when I was formed in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw me when I was formless;
all my days were written in Your book and planned
before a single one of them began.

That you would read this post was written into the Lord's book and planned ages ago.  Will you go bless a child in His name?  It is such a little thing to us, but has eternal repercussions. May God bless you!

Friday, March 29, 2013

The Tale of the Grimy Grout

This is not a sponsored post, just a post sharing an amazing homemade cleaner that I found. My friend Kriste posted something on her facebook wall that led me to her Pinterest account and the "Why Didn't I Think Of That" board.  There I found a link to a grout cleaner that was supposed to work very well.  I had all the ingredients on hand, so I wrote down the mixture to make up later.  Well, I have finally made it.

Now my house is over a decade old.  I, having never had tile before, unwisely chose a lovely eggshell color for the grout through the house.  Never do that.  Never. We sealed it. It was labor-intensive and it really didn't protect it for very long.  I gave up on trying to keep the grout white.  I have children to enjoy!  They won't remember the color of the grout when I am laying on my deathbed.  They'll remember the fun we have together.

However, it always bothered me. I'd wipe it down with a Magic Clean eraser every week or so, but it never STAYED clean.  I think this new cleaner may be the answer to my grout problems.

I tried it first on my kitchen grout.  I was happy.  I decided to tackle my entryway. I photodocumented the following experience.

Here's the before picture of the evenly dirty grout in front of our door. I could pretend it was SUPPOSED to be that color....but it wasn't.

Here's after a spray of the solution and a wipe of a wet cotton rag.

Here's the perpendicular line done.

 This is a wide shot.  The cross shape that I cleaned above is near the rag.  Big difference, huh?

Finally, here's the finished floor.

The original link recommended spraying on the cleaner, letting it sit for a while, then scrubbing it with a grout brush and wiping with a clean cloth.  I don't have time for that.  I sprayed all the grout lines and let it sit just while I was doing that. I don't have a grout brush, so I just scrubbed with the cotton rag and elbow grease. Only a little elbow grease, though. I haven't a lot to spare anymore!  This entire floor took about a half hour. If I had followed directions as written, maybe it would have come a little cleaner, but this is wonderfully acceptable to me!  It is, after all, the floor, not the table. It will have many, many feet tromping over it tomorrow and every day that follows.

I can't say how long the grout will stay light colored, but I do know that I can spare a half hour once in a while to bring it back to this shade.

After doing the floor, I was inspired to try cleaning a section of a grimy corner of our painted wall.  Mr. Clean Eraser works wonderfully, but did so by removing the paint.  A plain washrag didn't cut it, and neither did the other cleaners I had on hand.

A small amount of this solution on the cloth and the paint came clean, even in the deeper parts of the texture. I tried it first on a small section that was hidden, of course, in case it took the paint with it as I rubbed.  It did not.  I cleaned my entire Four Corners area in just a few minutes, again, using just the cloth and a little elbow grease.

I am so thankful that Kriste posted the link that day. The "maid" portion of my life just got MUCH easier!

Grout Cleaner

*never add bleach to this. Bleach and ammonia create toxic fumes that WILL sicken or kill you!*

3 1/2 cup water
1/4 cup baking soda
2 Tbsp + 2 tsp ammonia (I used lemon-scented)
2 Tbsp white vinegar

Mix together in a large bowl. There will be a reaction when you pour in the vinegar.  Using a funnel, fill a spray bottle.  Give a shake before use.

The original recipe has you making this IN the spray bottle. If I had, I think it would have fizzed out when I poured in the vinegar.  I'm glad I did it in a bowl instead.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Happiness is a Choice

Happiness is not a state of being, it's a choice!  The joy of the Lord is my strength, Psalm 28:7! Because I am saved, I know the Lord has me in the palm of His hand always. Isaiah 49: 15-16 promises that to me.  Focus on the Lord and joy will undoubtedly follow.  Today I am happy and thankful for several things, including Renee, whose post today inspired this one.

1. My husband, who works very hard so I can be home with the children.  He's so selfless in this desire.  I couldn't have asked for a better man with whom to spend my life. I thank the Lord for him daily.

2. I have plenty of food to share amongst my children and the neighborhood children.  We know not want or gnawing hunger.  I pray that this continues to be the case in our nation.

3. Sunshine and plenty of it!  Since moving to CA, I understand SAD.  I need my sunshine!

4. Fresh food. The farmer's market never closes here, but I love the variety and flavors of spring and summer.  Freshly harvested asparagus is amazing.  Honey is starting to come available again and I will be getting a bucket. I've missed honey.

5.  The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. We are the freest people of the world and I pray that out nation resists the forces that hope to change that.  Regardless, evil will never triumph over the will of the Lord and HE wins in the end! Every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of the Father!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Spring Updates

Spring is here in Central California!  The temperatures are warming and the winter hoodies have been packed away.  Flip flops and Vibrams are back in action!!

We are nearing our last few weeks of formal school.  Just six weeks to go!

We're harvesting lots of lettuce and Swiss chard from the garden. Lemons and oranges are in abundance. Lemonade is often being enjoyed and Creamsicle Jelly is back in the cupboards.  Carrots, green beans and radishes are planted, with tomatoes to follow soon.

I found an amazing deal on Craig's List!!  I was able to purchase a Squeezo Strainer and an All American 915 for a very nice price.  I will be able to put up tomato sauce this year!  Woohoo!

Lillie's FSP is climbing little by little.  Her parents are working as fast as they can to get through the paperwork and get her home.  Her mommy has a really neat store set up. She handcrafts amazing Montessori toys.  Every penny of each purchase is tax-deductible and is used exclusively for Lillie's adoption costs.  Think of Easter baskets filled with useful toys rather than candy, or birthday gifts that will endure the years! My Little Sunshine Montessori Boutique is the place to go.

So, how is life for you on this first day of Spring? What projects are you undertaking? What are your goals for this season?

Monday, March 11, 2013

Modeling Psalm 121

The Little Man has done something he has long longed to do....he walked on the roof.  I love how this picture shows his independence AND his daddy's ever watchful protection.  What a picture of the Lord's care for us!

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
 My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
 He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
 Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.
 The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
 The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.
 The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
 The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore. 

Psalm 121

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Reece's Rainbow Updates

There have been quite a few "happenings" regarding the children I advocate for on Reece's Rainbow. I'll start with the bad news....

As you've probably heard, a certain country has banned adoptions of their discarded children by Americans.  Despite the fact that hundreds of these precious children die every year in state "care" and they are almost never domestically adopted, even the special needs children are being denied families if those families happen to be American.  Some of the children I have advocated for are in this country.  Abbott and Angelina, who I hoped would someday be brother and sister, are now almost certainly going to grow up without hope of a family of their own.  Please pray for them.

In better news, Mabel has a committed family!!  I'm so thankful that she will be home soon. This family  doesn't need any help fundraising, so I won't be posting any more opportunities to help bring her home.  I will post, if I am given permission, a picture of her with her afghan that the crochet class made.

Meet Lillie

Lillie will be the next little girl to benefit from Hooked on Hope, my family's crochet fundraising page. I'll be blogging about various opportunities to help build her fund and bring her home!  If you want to help support Little Lillie, you can go join this page: Sweet Cheeks Fan Club.  Let me know if you will be praying for her and her family!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Neat Canning Idea

Almost finished.

I have a Camp Chef to use for outdoor canning, but if I didn't, I would certainly be showing this picture to my husband!  

Friday, February 1, 2013

A Labor of Love

*UPDATE* All of the entries were completed and the afghan was won by a dear lady who really wants Mabel home!  Thank you ALL for supporting her adoption!!

Last year, I began a crochet class for our local homeschoolers. With a note on our facebook group, I began recruiting folks who wanted to be a part of a service project. Many families responded and we began.  Hardly any of the moms and none of the children had crochet experience, but they were diligent and began learning stitches quickly.  After about three months, look at what they had created! It's a beautiful, twin sized granny square afghan!

They made it specifically to raise funds for a little girl nicknamed "Mabel".  She's nearly eight years old and is living in a mental institution in Eastern Europe.  She had a family deeply in love with her and working hard to bring her home, but circumstances beyond their control forced them to release her. I am still dedicated to praying and advocating for her until she is home. This afghan fundraiser will be a huge blessing to whichever family chooses to bring her into their family. I know it was a blessing to me to see these children and their mommies working hard to create it.

You can enter to win this afghan! Each donation of $10 to Mabel's account is an entry. Only 25 entries are being accepted.   Donations are fully tax deductible!  Email your receipt to me at THIS LINK and you will be entered.  You can also share this drawing on your blog or facebook and get an entry for a $10 donation to ANY Reece's Rainbow waiting child or adopting family that you want! You must leave a comment and link on THIS POST to be entered for the Pick-A-Child contest. Winners will be drawn using

Thank you so much for praying for Mabel and helping advocate for her!  Please pray diligently that she will be chosen again soon and be home FOREVER!

Monday, January 14, 2013

2012 Canning Inventory

I finally counted up last years canning. Here's the list!  I couldn't get enough apples, so my applesauce numbers are low and we will run out before apple season returns. I also couldn't can any apple marmalade or pie filling.  Also, I had so much jam left over from last year, I made very little this year.  Next year I hope to make more meals in a jar and canned meat and a wider variety of vegetables.

2012 Canning Inventory

7 pints Creamsicle
19 pints pizza sauce
13 quarts  chicken meat
75 quarts pinto beans
14 quarts Ranch beans
14 quarts ham and bean soup
8 1/2 pints Flamin’ Taco Sauce
5 quarts enchilada sauce
6 quarts spaghetti sauce
8 pints Banberry jam
7 quarts chicken soup
7 quarts meat chili
5 1/2 pints BBQ sauce
8 pint+1/2 dilly carrots
9 pint+1/2 dilly beans
7 pints apricots
2 pints mixed berry jam
8 quarts chicken broth
22 quarts zucchini salsa (given to K.)
19 quarts zucchini salsa
21 quarts zucchini sausage soup
4 pints black eyed peas
5 quarts chunky picante
2 quarts Vintage salsa
4 pints Vintage salsa (gifted to E.)
6 pints pickled peppers
6 pints pickled peppers (made with L.)
58 quarts green beans
7 quarts potatoes
2 quarts beef broth
1 quart mixed beef and chicken broth
11 quarts smooth picante
10 quarts applesauce
14 quarts pear applesauce
7 quarts stew meat
7 pints apple butter
3 1/2 pints cranberry sauce
14 quarts turkey broth

Sunday, January 13, 2013

2011 Canning Inventory

Oops, I didn't add last years canning inventory to this blog.  Here it is!

I canned a lot more this year! I know that I need more canned pintos, more chili, and I need to focus on getting some meat dishes canned.  I'm pretty happy with what I got done, though.

18 pints chili
7 quarts OJ (don't can OJ, it gets bitter...this was a waste)
42 pints strawberry jam
21 quarts pinto beans
15 pints Creamsicle jam
10 pints strawberry boysenberry jam
22 pints mixed fruit jam
6 pints boysenberry jam
9 pints gingered plum jam
4 quarts picante sauce
68 quarts green beans
3 quarts tomato juice
10 pints pizza sauce
12 pints mock pineapple
4 quarts elderberry syrup
3 pints elderberry syrup
7 quarts peaches
7 pint-and-a-half peaches
3 pints peaches
20 pints peach-blueberry jam
7 quarts pears
11 pints pear syrup
35 quarts applesauce
8 pints apple butter
4 pints pickled habenero and jalepenos