Gigi's Blog bio picture
  • Welcome to the Gigi Blog!

    Mother to six Little Women and Two Little Men. Married to a Happy Mortician. Caretaker to goats, chickens and many, MANY bunnies. Photographer. Homeschooler. Lover of Jesus, coffee & tea and all things pink & vintage.

Knitted in Love

The morning spring sunlight was streaming through the lace curtains, hung over the kitchen windows. Outside, we could faintly hear the refreshing calls and songs of the many birds who have returned for springtime. Fat robins, calm mourning doves and twitter-pated red-winged blackbirds frittered about on the treetops and lines of fences.

 

My little curious son sat beside me, ‘scootching’ over as close as he could get,  as we laid out the seed packets on the kitchen table.

“I’m going to plant hot peppers for daddy,” he said, searching through the paper packages for his seed selection.

Warm sunlight beams fell across the trays of seed pods, awaiting their new beginnings. Setting his seeds on the table, my son thoughtfully spread out the palms of his hands in the muted sunlight rays. The light fell dappled and gentle across his tender hands and fingers as he studied his fingers, spread wide and apart.

“Mommy, where did we come from? Are we knitted?” he asked, observing his hands very closely and turning them over as he spoke.

Caught off guard with his question – and perhaps focusing more on the 12 month old baby crawling towards to tray of already-planted seedlings- I answered his question with typical busy-motherhood fashion. No, I explained, as I pulled the baby away from causing damage  and placed some blocks in front of him to distract him. God made us, I said without too much thought.

“Then, why are we filled with lines?”

Sitting down on the long yellow bench that lined the table, I looked at my beautiful son. Reaching for his little hands, I held them tightly in my own. My own hands – ones that are now showing years of hard work and age and are tired and worn at times– and his, fresh and young and full of hope and energy … oh, sweet son …how can I rush this precious moment?

“Yes, you were knitted. You are right! The Lord made you. GOD made. You were indeed knitted – knitted inside of me by GOD … isn’t that amazing?” I told him, looking into his lovely bright eyes.

He nodded and turned back to his task of planting seeds for the future garden. The conversation was short and the words were few, but I’m sure his beautiful little child heart soaked in the thought … a Wonderful God, the Creator of everything, did indeed make his body, knit his little form together, and created his delightful person.

 

“For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.”
Psalm 139:13-14

 

 

March 29, 2021 - 7:33 pm

Lynnea I loved reading this tender, heart~warming story and how you captured that very important teachable moment with your son! Thank you!

March 24, 2021 - 9:16 am

Rachel How precious! Thank you again for raising children filled with awe of our Creator God, respect for His beautiful and best ways, and wonder at His marvellous creations. Wish we lived closer so I could experience a day (or more) in your home (and learn how to be a successful gardener, too)!

March 23, 2021 - 10:08 pm

Brenda Clair (Gigi’s Mom) AMEN, Gillian .. I thought the same thing – we are knitted in our mother’s womb, by the Lord. Love that scripture xoxo

Know Where God Has You

 

 

“If you would get a contended life,
do not grasp too much of the world,
do not take in more of the business of the world than God calls you to.
Do not be greedy in taking in a great deal of the world,
for if a man goes among thorns, when he may take a simpler way,
he has no reason to complain that he is pricked with them.

Be sure of your call to every business you go about.
Though it is the least business, be sure of your call to it;
then, whatever you meet with,
you may quiet your heart with this: I know where God would have me.
Nothing in the world will quiet the heart so much as this: when I meet with any cross,
I know I am where God would have me, in my place and calling; I am about the work that God has set me.”
-The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment, Jeremiah Burroughs

 

 

My rocking chair creaked as I cradled Luther, my 11 month old baby, in my arms. Scattered school books were open and reading was happening by the fire. The house was rather quiet – for a household of eleven, plus a dog and cat – and we were all nestled down for some a few hours of home educating. The older girls scratched away at math problems, while I helped out the younger girls with their language arts books. The peaceful baby boy contently slept in my arms …  these arms that have cradled nine babies throughout my motherhood journey, arms that would cradle at least nine more if  God so gave. Yes, it is self sacrificing — especially in the evenings when we are all tired and simply want to go to sleep and the little ones need rocking and more attention that you feel you can offer.

But … but isn’t that what we are called for?

What more could I ask for, than to fall into step with the calling from a Heavenly Father? I know where God would have me and this quiets my heart.

 

I truly feel so blessed – and yes, my arms and heart are full and I am tired on many days. While others who started their parenting journey at the same time are now finished raising their little ones and looking at a soon-empty-nest, I’m still zipping up snowsuits, baking cookies, changing diapers and watching with awe as my young girls are slowly ushered into womanhood. Joyous girlhood, little boys turning our pink home into a new world, sleeping Basset hound at my feet, kittens in closets and snow falling all around … I would not change this for all the riches in the world.  Just this week, we had so many little adventures in our household … I could write a book (and one day, I do hope to!) … but God is so faithful and gentle in His care for our family. I feel His presence and guidance and am so thankful.

 

For your tea time …

I wanted to share a recipe we have been using lately. It is so delightful for an afternoon tea break, which I daily take.  This lemon loaf is so tasty!

 

Frosted Lemon Poppyseed Loaf
1/2 cup of butter
1 cup of sugar
2 eggs
1 lemon rind (I did not have lemons, so I used a good squirt or two of lemon juice)
sprinkling of poppy seeds
1/4-1/2 cup of milk
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 tsp. of baking powder

Cream butter, sugar and eggs.
Add rest of the ingredients. Bake for 45 minutes.
Makes one loaf.
Glaze while hot with following:

6 tbsp. of powdered sugar
2 tbsp of lemon juice
Stir until dissolved.

 

 

Also, the winner of Lyla’s knitted dishcloth …

Using random.org … is Leah!

Leah, you can email me at gigigauthier@protonmail.com and Lyla and I will be delighted to send you a knitted dishcloth. Lyla and I hope your dish-washing will be a joyous time as you fulfill your calling as a mother. God bless you!

 

 

 

March 8, 2021 - 12:47 pm

Diane GiGi you make motherhood look so inviting! I just love the cowboy boots, hat and suspenders! The lemon bread looks so yummy, as I am currently cutting most carbs from my diet. It’s fun to just look anyways. As a Grandma of 14, and one 19 yr old still in the nest, I can see how fast this all goes. When I was younger enjoyed my babies, but not as much as I should have. Contentment is the key!

March 3, 2021 - 6:30 am

Gigi Kim, I’m so sorry to hear about your situation, but that is so good that you are finding peace in being where God wants you to be! Praying for you!

March 3, 2021 - 6:28 am

Gigi Jen, sorry, it is 350 degrees until baked! (Toothpick comes out clean!)

March 2, 2021 - 6:18 pm

Kim-Pacific Northwest I had been feeling rather stressed because my sister had to move to the east coast to be with her adult daughter who is in a serious crisis. I was upset because she is my baby sister and how I wanted to be by her side and help her in whatever way I could yet I heard the Holy Spirit telling me to stay put and carry on. Yesterday I finally got a call from my sister asking for my help in a very small way- something I could do from here. It made all the difference in my mood. Yes, I am where I need to be right now and she is where she needs to be but we can still love and support each other. Sometimes life takes strange turns but it sure helps to know when you are right where God wants you. Thanks for the encouragement!!

March 1, 2021 - 10:29 pm

Jen Is it 350 for 45 minutes? Or 400 degrees at 45 minutes?

February 27, 2021 - 8:03 am

Ruthie It looks like big brother tuckered little brother right out! I love how you are able to enjoy all the stages of young womanhood right down to baby boy. Sweet blessings❤ Lemon poppyseed… sounds and looks delicious! Will have to give recipe a try. Thankyou!

February 26, 2021 - 7:02 pm

Kristal Oh my goodness, your little Luther has such a sweet face. Our Holly is 3 months old now, and it amazes me how the time goes so quickly. It’s so wonderful getting to spend this time with our children. I can’t believe he will be a year old next month. I feel like I just read your post about his birth! Also, your lemon poppyseed loaf looks delicious. I think I need to bake this for our treat next week. I hope your family is doing well!

February 26, 2021 - 1:07 am

Brenda Clair (Gigi’s Mom) Aww, Luther is so cute and growing up so fast!! Love Loyal’s western outfit. What a sweetie xo

Cheerfully & Thankfully

“The Christian way of doing dishes is cheerfully,
thankfully, thoroughly, to get them clean. “

-Elisabeth Elliot

 

{Giveaway at the bottom of the post}

Hot, soapy water trickled down my arms, as I plunged my hands back into the soapy dish water.

Breakfast, the first meal and most messy meal for our large family of nearly a dozen, had just ended. The large, noisy crowd of blessed children, fed and ready for the brand new day, had skipped upstairs to brush their teeth and begin their chores. The dog whined at my feet, waiting for some scraps of scrambled eggs to be placed in his bowl, a welcoming breakfast for a hungry pet.

Looking down the counter at the traffic jam of dirty dishes, I was surprised to see how many bowls, cups, spoons (and forks?), plates and other random utensils there were to wash.

It’s a good thing I enjoy washing dishes, I thought to myself, smiling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Armed with a homemade dishcloth and a sink full of hot, clean soapy water and dove into my task at hand. A CD of my favorite Big Band music played softly in the background.

I hummed while sorting through the lopsided towers of unclean dishes, poorly attempting to create some sort of order to the cuisine madness. I have found it is easier to wash in order:

— cups first, always, then utensils, then the soiled plates and so forth …

It was not long before the piles and piles of unclean dishes turn out — rather quickly — on the opposite side of the counter, clean, sparkling and ready for the next meal.

 

As the last droplet of water ran off the sparkling copper cups, it brought a great sense of satisfaction to my homemaker’s soul.

Watching your well-used, untidy kitchen turn into a clean, sparkling warm and welcoming area is just a delight. Others may mock me, but it is one of my favorite chores, transforming a recently-vacated kitchen into a lovely clean atmosphere again. In our house, dishes never stay dirty between meals. In fact, there is an unwritten rule that as you use a dish, you wash it. If you are baking, you clean up as you go. It truly saves time and makes the clean up effort less painful for everyone involved.

Once the dishes were washed, rinsed, dried and put away into the cupboards (thanks to the help of my little daughter), I fed the sourdough starter, pulled out two loaves of bread for breakfast the next the morning and put the banana cake on the counter to cool. Getting our morning chores of food preparation finished and attended to in the morning also makes the afternoon flow smoothly.

 

This organization of timing also allows for a tea time in the afternoon while the baby naps and the children take a break from school studies. While homemaking has been a long journey and one that has taken me many years to finally enjoy the every day routine, I see it now as a blessing.
As I told my husband this morning, as he left for work, my days – although ‘normal’, are never, ever boring to me.  Perhaps it is all in your perspective …

 

 

“The good wife must be a good housekeeper.
I know well how unromantic this remark will appear
to those whose dreams of married life are woven of the fancies of youthful sentiment,
but these frail dreams of sentiment will not last long amid the stern realities of life,
and then what which will prove one of the rarest elements of happiness and blessing in the household will be housewifely industry and diligence.

– Homemaking, J.R. Miller

 

 

Post Script:

The girls and I have been enjoying a winter of crocheting. Many of you may have seen Lacey’s doilies which she made over the winter. If you would like to enter to receive a homemade dishcloth- {pictured above} made by Lyla with love – then, please leave a little comment on this blog and we will pick a winner shortly.  God bless each of you on your homemaking journey!

 

February 18, 2021 - 1:21 pm

Alice Duits Hi Gigi,
I love the doilies I received from Lacey ! So pretty ! I have emailed a couple of times to you. I have a feeling the emails are not coming through. Could you please check….
Thank you for your ongoing ministry through your blog. I am always blessed !

February 18, 2021 - 9:15 am

Michelle Thank you again Gigi for ALWAYS encouraging us to be the wives, mothers, and keepers of our homes the way God would have us to!! Your blog is SO UPLIFTING and I am so thankful and appreciate your encouragement. The dishcloths are beautiful, please tell your daughter she has done a fantastic job!!

February 17, 2021 - 3:08 pm

Christina Lovely pictures of home and family.

February 13, 2021 - 4:03 pm

miriam stoltzfoos I thought I’d share a poem I’ve read recently and I’d be happy to win a dishcloth as well.
Before a child has reached seven, have him taught the way to heaven;
Better still the truth will thrive, if he knows the way before he’s five;
Best of all if at your knee, he learns the way before he’s three!

February 12, 2021 - 12:23 am

Kristal Hello Gigi and family! It’s funny how you talk about loving washing dishes (usually a dreaded task). I feel the same way about folding laundry. For some reason I find it very relaxing and extremely rewarding. Large piles of laundry don’t make me anxious, just the opposite. Haha! It’s good mothers find happiness in daily tasks.

February 11, 2021 - 2:58 pm

Diane What a lovely post as usual Gi Gi. I have my own knitted dishcloth on the table here next to my chair, but I would still love to receive one from Lyla. I love the way you use a bucket in the sink for dishes. I can’t seem to find a drain that doesn’t leak out dishwater. I use a black plastic dishpan from Walmart. They usually crack easily so I have to keep buying new ones. Think I’ll have to find me a nice antique bucket. I don’t mind dishes at all either. I love to do them with my daughters and granddaughters. There’s something about doing them together that gives me so much joy.

February 11, 2021 - 1:49 pm

Erin Lynn I love Elisabeth Elliott! I am starting a book study using her book, “Let Me be a Woman,” this weekend. I am trying to use the study to disciple my own girls and to encourage others. I am so tempted to fall into self-pity as we have been isolated due to the pandemic. As well, I don’t have many friends or family that are like-minded in parenting and family life. Do you struggle with this? Thank you for the reminder to do small tasks with a cheerful heart!!

February 11, 2021 - 1:32 pm

Kim Cader Your blog never fails to inspire me. Your perspective on what I’ve always considered an annoying mundane task is refreshing and so appreciated. Love your blog! ☺

February 10, 2021 - 12:11 pm

Jen Heemskerk I love your perspective. I too like to have a clean and tidy kitchen. And those homemade dishclothes! Just perfect!

February 10, 2021 - 9:25 am

Angela Boydston Love reading about you and your family and your live of being a homemaker

February 10, 2021 - 1:40 am

Regina Shea I find dishwashing rather relaxing. I’ve been crocheting too! It’s fun and also relaxing. The dishcloth is so pretty. Your daughter did a great job!

February 10, 2021 - 1:05 am

Brenda Clair (Gigi’s Mom) Wow, Lyla, your tension on the dishcloth is “right on”! And I love the shades of blue. Good job, sweetie xo

February 9, 2021 - 11:31 pm

Monica The photographs are just beautiful and make washing dishes look so romantic. I love it. Add me to the list of those who truly love her homemaking duties as well! Something I truly (and my girls!) do daily…washing dishes. May as well enjoy it! *wink*

February 9, 2021 - 10:22 pm

Annie I completely agree about washing dishes! There’s nothing quite like a clean kitchen, is there? Thank you for the peaceful and uplifting words! I would love to be considered for a dishcloth 🙂

February 9, 2021 - 8:15 pm

Crystal Such a lovely post. I needed this reminder of enjoying the little things of homemaking. It’s so easy to just want to get something done to get onto the next thing, never enjoying any of it. Its so precious your daughters learning crocheting. I admire you and your family. God bless you all

February 9, 2021 - 8:07 pm

Leah Greetings Gigi! I am a fairly new reader of your blog, so happy to have stumbled upon your lovely blog. It is so wonderful to know there still are women out there finding and pursuing the joys of mothering /teaching/training their own children, loving their husbands as well as keeping the home fires burning. Blessing to you & your precious family! I would so love to have a beautiful handmade washcloth.

Sing, Sing, Sing

“If you want a lift to your mood, raise a song up to the Father.”
-Amish Proverb

 

Amongst the busy-ness and regular noises of life, the sounds of chaotic strumming streamed down the hallway into my kitchen. Soon afterwards, the stubby little music maker followed, strumming his tiny guitar with great emotion and feeling. This little boy was truly enjoying himself as he made “music” this morning.

“Sing mommy,” my three year old demanded, as he sat on the kitchen stool, propped his little guitar against his knee and strummed away happily.  His stubby fingers held a quarter which he used with great zeal for his guitar pick.

 

My mind was busy – there is so much to think about and ponder over right now, isn’t there? — I was mixing up a recipe – and my thoughts were elsewhere … {aren’t we all thinking heavy thoughts at the beginning of this year?}

“You just play, honey, you play and I will work,” I replied, as I sifted out the flour required for the baking. I wiped my hands on my apron and turned around to retrieve some more ingredients from my stocked kitchen pantry.

“I will only play when you sing,” the little boy declared, furrowing his brown and eyeing me with a determined look. “Sing. Sing!”

Realizing this little man meant what he said, I reluctantly agreed …

“Okay, I’ll sing,” I replied, smiling at the little one while trying to think of a song that would fit with his unusual ‘chord’ patterns.

 

It was not long before the sounds of the guitar brought out my other son — soon, both of my sweet boys were ‘strumming’ {with a coin as a pick} together, filling the room with their innocent voices and interesting style of music. Their song of choice was “Jesus Loves the Little Children.”  My, their adorable singing warmed my heart and brought a big smile to my face!

 

 

Together, in that kitchen filled with flour and the smell of homemade bread baking, we lifted up our voices and our un-tuned instruments in praise to God.

And immediately, I felt better.  I felt securely drawn back into my safe world created within the walls of our home … a feeling of peace and joy radiated through my soul as I watched the tiny boys sing to a Mighty King.

Lifting up our imperfect voices and scratchy, un-tuned music together was like a healthy balm for my weary soul.

My heart was light. My thoughts about the outside world vanished.
I only needed to sing to the Father.

It is no wonder that our Lord directed His people to sing …

 

 But I will sing of thy power; yea, I will sing aloud of thy mercy in the morning:
for thou hast been my defence and refuge in the day of my trouble.

Psalm 59:16

Is any among you afflicted? let him pray.
Is any merry? let him sing psalms.

James 15:3

 

 

 

 

I remember reading about interesting singing facts in a book, such as singing is a natural anti depressant. How fascinating!

Here is a simple list to encourage you to sing with your children:

                  Singing Benefits:

  1. Boosts your immune system.
  2. Releases stress.
  3. Benefits your heart.
  4. Increases your energy.
  5. Improves your memory.
  6. Fosters clear thinking through correct breathing.

Our family absolutely loves to join in with other families for hymn sings. It is amazing how an hour of singing beautiful hymns can be so uplifting in so many ways. Everyone enjoys it, even the little children. We all look forward to our hymn sings! And apparently, there is a good reason we all enjoy our group hymn sings, as listed here. Yes, that says group singing lowers your stress hormone and alleviates anxiety and stress.  Singing together lessens the feeling of depression and loneliness. Isn’t that wonderful?!

When is the last time you sang in a group? Have you ever hosted a hymn sing in our home?

Please … raise up your voice and sing … it will be a healing balm to your soul. And if you visit our home, don’t be surprised if we pass out the stack of old hymnals for a group sing together.

 

 

 

February 12, 2021 - 12:14 pm

Diane Love these pictures! Your boys are adorable, and I love the overalls! Music is is one of the best things to learn in life, that they can still do someday in their old age.

February 8, 2021 - 11:19 pm

Teresa Your post reminded me of one of my favorite Bible verse: **Ephesians 5:19 (kjv) Speaking to yourselves Psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord; A lovely post ~ take care and stay warm!!

February 2, 2021 - 8:30 pm

Lynnea Just the sweet, gentle reminder I needed…as soon as I finished reading this I got out our hymnal and sang ~ and the burdens rolled away……blessed peace.

February 1, 2021 - 5:54 pm

Gramma Cardinal Love ir! Will send Auntie a pic! xxxxxxxxxxx

January 30, 2021 - 5:53 pm

Gigi Kim, I’m so glad it was encouraging. God bless you.

January 30, 2021 - 2:45 pm

kim I needed every word you shared today! Thank you so much for that encouragement. <3

~ The Cost of a Baby ~

‘How much do babies cost?’ said he
The other night upon my knee;
And then I said: ‘They cost a lot;

 

A lot of watching by a cot,
A lot of sleepless hours and care,
A lot of heartache and despair,
A lot of fear and trying dread,
And sometimes many tears are shed
In payment for our babies small,
But every one is worth it all.

‘For babies people have to pay
A heavy price from day to day-
There is no way to get one cheap.

Why, sometimes when they’re fast asleep
You have to get up in the night
And go and see that they’re all right.

But what they cost in constant care
And worry, does not half compare
With what they bring of joy and bliss…
You’d pay much more for just a kiss.

‘Who buys a baby has to pay
A portion of the bill each day;
He has to give his time and thought
Unto the little one he’s bought …

.
He has to stand a lot of pain
Inside his heart and not complain;
And pay with lonely days and sad
For all the happy hours he’s had.

All this a baby costs, and yet
His smile is worth it all, you bet.’
~ Edgar Albert Guest

January 29, 2021 - 6:26 pm

Gigi Love you, Grandma! xxoo

January 29, 2021 - 6:16 pm

Gigi Thank you, Regina!!! He’s such a blessing to our family!

January 29, 2021 - 6:15 pm

Gigi Thank you! 🙂 Hugs!!

January 29, 2021 - 6:15 pm

Gigi I love Luther, too! 😉

January 29, 2021 - 6:14 pm

Gigi Linda, that is so neat! Lovelyn just received three letters from Lily in a span of seven days – I think the mail system was backlogged. So, please tell Lily that Lovelyn’s letter is on it’s way (as of Monday). God bless you!

January 25, 2021 - 4:34 am

Linda Oh my word he’s got to be the cutest little boy !! Oh and my daughter Katie keeps wanting me to tell you that I am Lily’s nana (who Loelyn) writes to – penpal. Katie keeps saying “Have you told that to Gigi in a comment mum” and I keep forgetting, so now you know. Blessings to you 🙂 (Lily is always super excited when she gets a new letter !!) x ~ Nana Linda

January 23, 2021 - 2:17 am

Brenda Clair (Gigi’s Mom) So sweet xo I love the poem and I love Luther too. xo

January 21, 2021 - 9:08 pm

Monica He is so cute!!

January 18, 2021 - 6:04 pm

Lynnea Precious boy! Beautiful photos! Sweet memories to cherish! ❤️

January 18, 2021 - 4:34 pm

TERESA@ SF Awwww, yes babies and children are priceless. What a handsome little guy he is!

January 18, 2021 - 2:58 pm

Gramma Cardinal Such a handsome boy! He has your hair! x

January 17, 2021 - 11:03 am

Regina Shea What a beautiful poem! I love it and what a sweet baby. I want to come up there and give him a big fat kiss. Those cheeks!