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.

Welcome, Spring & Gentle Learning

The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come,
and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;

Song of Solomon 2:12

 

Throwing wide the kitchen door, a burst of cold, fresh air swept across our faces. The vibrant songs of so many different birds sang out in our muddy yard as the pink-tinted sun peeked over the horizon.


“Ahhhh, spring,” my six year old said, breathing in the fresh air and throwing her arms up in the air. “Are we going to have our party?”

 

{Another thrift store find for this tea pot! Isn’t it perfect for spring? I loved the violets! I even had a matching violet tea cup to use with it…small blessings are delightful!}

Yes, I assured her, as we hustled about to finish up the breakfast dishes. Spring indeed had arrived and yes, we would have a tea party to celebrate.

We are so glad to see the change of season, even if we love and adore winter. All seasons are welcome here in the Gauthier family. We will be sad to put away the sleds and ice skates, but will be so excited to spend our days (soon) in the glorious warm spring sunshine, planting seeds and trying to get the school work done before summer officially arrives.

Yes, the second day of spring, while cloudy and quite damp, show promise of the new season…

Little birds, nesting in the branches of the trees, flew down and perched on the fence post … small twigs were spotted in their beaks, no doubt on their way to fluff up or construct their nests for their soon-laid-eggs.

The second day of  spring found us gathering like little busy birds in our kitchen, as well.  We opted for a Welcome, Spring spontaneous tea party without much planning. While the bigger girls baked vanilla cupcakes and made up recipes for a pink-tinted frosting, the little sweeties set the table and helped hand out the napkins.  We topped the cupcakes with some pretty pink birds and some Beatrix Potter figures (our favorites).  This day also happened to be the famous loved Johann Sebastian Bach’s birthday and so we celebrated by reviewing some information on him (he was the happy father of 20 children! A strong Christian and an amazing musician!) and listen to his music during tea time. This impromptu tea time also brought an opportunity to bring in our poetry – as we went around the table reading a poem from a chosen poetry book.

Finding reasons to stop and “take tea” has become a very special part of my motherhood. The excuse to stop, boil water and prepare a tea table can be used for any reason … an over scheduled day that needs some breathing space … fussy toddlers that need a little attention and order … some out-loud reading time to catch up on our current family book … and just time to sit and be still … have you tried it with your children, yet?

 

“This is a hectic world.
We multi-task every part of our lives from talking on the phone while unloading the dishwasher to even making dentist appointments on the cell phone while driving our kids to basketball practice.
Often there isn’t any time to even just think.
When we stop and pause, we rejuvenate ourselves.

 

Taking time out for tea does exactly that.
It relaxes your mind, replenishes your spirit and nurtures your soul.
In addition there is new research about the health benefits and advantages of taking tea. The work in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition dispels the common belief that tea dehydrates. Tea not only rehydrates as well as water does, but it can also protect against heart disease and some cancers, UK nutritionists found. Experts believe flavonoids are the key ingredient in tea that promote health.”
-source

 

 

 

This new season is here to warm our bodies, chilled from winter,  rejuvenate our souls and bring new life. Welcome, Spring!

P.S. A clip of one of our favorite spring-themed songs …

March 25, 2019 - 11:43 am

Teresa@ Simply Farmhouse Beautiful post, and lovely thoughts. I love how you welcome things in life with a simple tea party. You are so inspiring! Happy Spring! I look forward to your next post.

March 22, 2019 - 6:58 pm

Gigi Rachel, that sounds like a tradition in the making. So sweet. Scones are a great snack – much healthier than our cupcakes! 😉

March 22, 2019 - 6:58 pm

Gigi Debby, that would be fun! 🙂
I love your memory with your grandma. How sweet! Grandmas are great!!

March 22, 2019 - 11:11 am

Debby in Kansas, USA I wish Ontario wasn’t so far from Kansas! I think I’d invite myself over and beg to be an adopted Grandma!! I love how you make everyday life an event. No matter how small, those memories are treasured. My *event* was going to Woolworth’s with my Grandma. It was the WalMart of 1970! She was a crafter and would go for yarn, fabric, whatever. She’d always let me buy a couple of pieces of felt and some of those pom pom edges. I’d decorate shoeboxes and make mice & houses for them! Anyway, after shopping, we’d go over to their little café for a treat. We’d get a club sandwich with chips and share a piece of apple pie with ice cream. It was such a treat and I treasure that memory now, after 50 yrs.!

March 21, 2019 - 10:20 pm

Rachel Gorgeous tea table! I have a toddler and I know that when I take time out to just reset, connect and relax with her, it is a wonderful blessing to our day. I’m going to work to literally have tea with her… she has plastic teacups that she adores playing with… make some scones perhaps… just make snack time a special time in our day. Thank you for sharing!

The Call of the Mourning Dove

“Our sorrows are all, like ourselves, mortal.
There are no immortal sorrows for immortal souls.
They come, but blessed be God, they also go.
Like birds of the air, they fly over our heads.
But they cannot make their abode in our souls.

We suffer today, but we shall rejoice tomorrow.” 
Charles Spurgeon

 

 

 

 

 

Sitting here, in front of the cozy fire in my parlour, I have just finished reading my Bible and some encouraging words to begin the day. Outside the window, in the tall pine trees, I can hear the lonesome sound of our Mourning Doves, who, after a long winter, have returned to make their nest in the same tree as the year before. Have you noticed some familiar birds returning to your property? I believe there are beautiful things to see all the time – we just have to look for them.

 

“Keep your antennas up,” as my dad would say.

Noticing the returning of our silver-laced Mourning Doves was something all the children saw yesterday, as we sat around the breakfast table with bowls filled with steaming hot butter-and-honey oatmeal.

“They’re back, mommy,” my little Lovelyn said, pointing out the window that faces two old pines trees that sit right next to our kitchen. She pressed her face against the window pane and stretched to look to the top of the bushy tree. “I bet they will be making a nest soon again!”

I’m constantly encouraging the children to look deeper throughout their day, notice something that no one else will notice, watch for expressions in people’s faces, take note of different birds flying through the sky, notice the first bud on the Silver Maple tree in the barnyard, pay attention to the changing weather and the clouds drifting by … will it rain today or snow? Have you looked at the gorgeous moon lately and noticed what lunar phase we are in?

“Devote yourselves to prayer,
being watchful and thankful.”

Colossians 4:2

In the mudroom at the back of the house, we have an incubator, humming away … inside, little chicks are forming from my daughter’s collection of chicken eggs.

“Guess what day they will hatch, mommy?” she said, with delight as she fingers the delicate eggs tenderly. “Sunday! It’s going to be a great day! Look, I can see his beak!”

She holds her egg up to a light so we can all ohh and ahh over the tiny chick wiggling within it’s shell … truly, a little miracle … I do not think we should grow so old, so jaded and dried up as to not think of a new life forming inside a tiny chicken egg as a miracle. Yesterday, a the girls and I drove to the local tractor supply store, we stopped to marvel at all the birds who were returning to a local pond. It’s still chilly outside, melting snow still covers the ground, but these wonderful birds know it’s still time to return home to make their nests and prepare for their new season.

Who guides these magnificent birds to and from in their migrating season? God.

Who made that chick? God.
Who brought the sweet Morning Doves back to their same weathered nest outside our kitchen window every spring? Who helps our little seeds to sprout in the warmth of the soil-filled trays, sitting in our kitchen?

God.

 

“Oh Mommy, I wanted to tell you … while we were swinging on the swings, I looked up and saw a swan flying over head,” my eldest daughter told me later that afternoon, as we were preparing dinner together. She knows I love to hear these facts about the day.

A wild swan! Incredible! Soon, we will all pack up in the truck and go to the local pond and watch and wait and see if we can spot some swans gathering. Last year, we were blessed to see two Trumpeter Swans in a neighbour field. They were absolutely gorgeous.

This Creator of Heaven and earth … He is majestic and wonderful. Nature points to His glory all around us – even in the muddiest, gross season of snow-melting in Ontario. There is very little actual pretty scenery to look at outside right now, but if one is slow and quiet, you will hear the song of the cardinal, the low mournful call of the Mourning Doves … you may even here the dripping of melting snow …  this old snow melts away to showcase a vast muddy, dirty bare ground … but we all know … soon, lush green grass will grow, beautiful vibrant flowers will spring up and the grey skies will magically turn vivid blue filled with fluffy clouds. Magnificent white swans will return, naked trees will be clothed in beautiful green leaves and new life will spring forth.

Last night, after a very grey, dreary day, burdened with heavy adult concerns,  we cleaned up the supper dishes and looked out the front windows to see a beautiful rain began to peacefully fall. Suddenly, there, spread across a gloomy sky, was the most lovely rainbow spread forth in all its glory. Rainbows in March are not common around here. It was a welcomed sight for us all – and again, it is a promise from God!

{a rainbow from another season}

No matter what season we are in – whether it is one we can barely bear alone on our frail human shoulders or one filled with delight and joy –  we know God is in it.  He will never fail us. In our darkest days, He will never leave us. Today, I want to look for those delicate, nearly-hidden details in my day that point to an amazing, Holy Creator … who is watching over me.

 

 

25 Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?

 

 

March 22, 2019 - 6:59 pm

Gigi Thank you, Bethany. ((hugs))

March 22, 2019 - 6:59 pm

Gigi Lynnea, I would love to see a beaver in the wild! What fun!

March 22, 2019 - 6:59 pm

Gigi Thank you, Emma. P.S. Congratulations on your baptism!

March 21, 2019 - 5:57 pm

Emma Beautiful pictures and words! Your thoughtfulness is a great inspiration and encouragement to me. Thank you!
Oh, how much joy-filled wonder we miss out on when we get caught up in ‘grown-up things’ and forget about the Lord’s small mercies to us!

March 19, 2019 - 9:42 pm

Lynnea I love seeing and hearing the Mourning Doves around our home when they come back for a season. I miss them and hope they arrive soon. Today a covey of quail, momma and her little ones, were running alongside a dirt path close to the house. Recently while walking by a lake we watched the Mallard ducks and Canadian geese on the melting ice and patches of water. It was a rare treat when my husband spotted a beaver on a nearby bank that seemed to be sunning itself.

It was lovely to see a hand drawing of the swan in flight!

I so enjoyed your post, thank you ~

March 19, 2019 - 12:17 pm

Bethany What a great reminder!

March 18, 2019 - 5:11 pm

Debby in Kansas, USA Beautiful post! I have a pair of Mourning Doves that come to my yard every spring and stay for the summer. I just saw them over the weekend for the first time. I also saw a Robin and that always means Spring is about here. I love that you’re teaching your children to notice such daily little miracles.

March 18, 2019 - 3:36 am

Linda Hi Gigi, I loved the words” I’m constantly encouraging the children to look deeper throughout their day”. That is so precious and such a treasure to pass on to them. I’m sure as they grow, simple observations in nature (which are really wonders) will bring them great joy and contentment. They will delight in God’s handiwork. Blessings to you and thank you for your lovely posts. ~ Linda

March 17, 2019 - 8:39 pm

Erin Lynn Thank you so much for these thoughts. For the last five months the trials and troubles seem to come back to back. My husband keeps reminding me that it is a season. Your words are so timely. May the Lord lift you and bear your burdens tonight.

March 16, 2019 - 2:07 pm

Sue I love the quote from Charles Spurgeon. I am with hubby traveling and have more than enough time to pray for you all.
Hang in there..i know there is a light at the end if the tunnel and i have found it in my most recent trial! Thank the Lord, His timing is perfect.

March 16, 2019 - 1:45 pm

Shirley Your words and photos always remind us of the beauty and hope we have available in life. Thank you for taking time from the needs and concerns of your day to lift the hearts of others.

Hugs from Shirley

March 15, 2019 - 8:12 pm

Monica Beautiful post and great reminder! We’d be surprised at the amount of people who just don’t notice life around them. I really try to, but aim to do better. I was noticing today the fig tree in front of my kitchen window has its leaves now. I think we have become dependent on media to inform us of things such as weather, when to grow crops, etc. that we don’t have to look for the signs around us on when to do things. Convenience has handicapped us, no doubt.

When Mother Cooks With Wood

“In the past century, technology has accelerated at a dizzy-ing rate.
Scores of machines have replaced the working and thinking of people —
and do them better.
These advances have freed us from countless, laboursome tasks,
creating time for more satisfying jobs.
But some tasks, though they take more effort,
offer greater rewards when done the old fashioned way.
That’s how an increasing number of cooks view the cookstove.”
– Woodstove Cookery, 1946

 

Outside my kitchen windows, the snow is swirling gently around and the cold wind is whisking through the barren tree branches. A sparking of snow is flitting down from the heavens and dusting the grounds around the home. The kitchen is warm and toasty … there is a big pot of soup simmering for dinner and biscuit dough waiting to be cut out.

The winter winds are still strong here in Ontario, Canada. We are north, no doubt, to many of my readers. We still we have a month of winter yet – and while I am excited to embrace the change and newness of spring, I am quite content to spend a few more months cooking at my favorite spot: my cookstove.

 

While many accuse me of living like the past [I suppose it is true] and tell me to get with modern times, there is something so lovely and wonderful about a hearty meal, all cooked with wood on the family cookstove.

 


Our stove, which we bought used a few years ago, keeps our kitchen warm and toasty. Without it, our kitchen feels so chilly and un-inviting. I am so grateful to have a warm fire in this room for the cooler months. In our province, it’s cold for quite a while and it makes using the wood cookstove so much more worthwhile.

Tonight’s meal is a pot of Poor Man’s Soup, or Stone Soup, as we call it. The recipe can be found in my wood cookstove book, however, it is very simple.

 

Truly … it is a big pot of beautiful scalloped or chopped potato soup. What hearty joy in a soup pot! We all love this soup – and it is so easy and simple to prepare. Peel and cube potatoes – any kind. Add broth and water to the pot. Stir in your potatoes, add some chopped onions for flavour … drop in lots of butter, cheese, sour cream if you want, parsley and any seasonings you wish. Lots of cheese loaded on top when it is time to serve make sit all the more heartier. Doesn’t it sound like a delicious soup to serve to a large or small family?

I call it Stone Soup – or Poor Man’s Soup – because you really do not need much to make this soup.  It stretches so very far. We make sure to make enough for lunch the following day.

{My mother gave me this gorgeous cast iron pot –
it’s huge and very heavy. I absolutely love it. }

 

The girls and I are reading through some of Edgar A. Guests poems for school. I absolutely love his poetry – we came across this lovely poem and it was very fitting to share.

 

 

 

 

When Mother Cooked With Wood

I do not quarrel with the gas,
Our modern range is fine,
The ancient stove was doomed to pass
From Time’s grim firing line,
Yet now and then there comes to me
The thought of dinners good
And pies and cake that used to be
When mother cooked with wood.
The axe has vanished from the yard,
The chopping block is gone,
There is no pile of corkwood hard
For boys to work upon;
There is no box that must be filled
Each morning to the hood;
Time in its ruthlessness has willed
The passing of the wood.
And yet those days were fragrant days
And spicy days and rare;
The kitchen knew a cheerful blaze
And friendliness was there.
And every appetite was keen
For breakfasts that were good
When I had scarcely turned thirteen
And mother cooked with wood.
I used to dread my daily chore,
I used to think it tough
When mother at the kitchen door
Said I’d not chopped enough.
And on her baking days, I know,
I shirked whene’er I could
In that now happy long ago
When mother cooked with wood.
I never thought I’d wish to see
That pile of wood again;
Back then it only seemed to me
A source of care and pain.
But now I’d gladly give my all
To stand where once I stood,
If those rare days I could recall
When mother cooked with wood.

-Edgar A. Guest

March 16, 2019 - 3:57 pm

Gigi Shirley, that is a lovely memory. Thank you for your encouraging words.

March 16, 2019 - 3:01 pm

Shirley My Grandma taught me to cook on her wood stove. Those long ago memories still warm my heart. Her food was sooooo good! The beautiful photos you have so kindly shared with us today will be scenes that warm your children’s hearts many years from now.
How blessed they are to have the riches of such a lovely mother and home life tucked in their hearts and memories.
And we are blessed to peek into the beautiful home you share with us.

God bless you

Shirley

March 11, 2019 - 2:12 pm

Molly Love your post, each post is like a breath of fresh air from the noisiness of our modern days. I too long for a slower pace of life. While I do not cook with wood, I surely hope my girls will one day remember the warmth and delicious aromas that come from our kitchen. The kitchen truly is the heart of the home.

March 8, 2019 - 4:32 pm

Gigi Diane, yes, soup simmering away is wonderful! And propane is expensive here, too. I would much rather use wood!
Here is the link for the dress. It is so comfortable. I love wearing floral dresses!
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07B9VJ11Y/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o02_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

March 8, 2019 - 4:31 pm

Gigi Laura, yes, I agree – when I found out we were getting the cookstove, besides make bread in the cookstove, my second thing to do was place a rocking chair beside it!

March 8, 2019 - 3:31 pm

Diane When I was married we heated with wood only for the first 10 yrs. (35 yrs ago) We continued to heat with wood up until a few years ago with radiator heat as a back up. I can remember setting soup pots on our wood stove to save gas from our stove. Propane was so expensive for us back then. I love the smell of wood burning in the house. So cozy and very warm. Love these pictures GiGi. Makes me want spring to come a little later. It’s really snowy yet here in Michigan. That dress is so pretty too. Could I ask where you found it?

March 8, 2019 - 1:31 pm

Laura Smith I’ve never used a cook stove but looks very cozy. I love your rocking chair in the kitchen. That is such a wonderful place for mother to be found rocking in her kitchen.

March 8, 2019 - 6:13 am

Gigi Hello Ruth, yes, I do all my baking and cooking on this stove. In the summer, when we find it too hot to run it, we shut it down from about June-early September, and I cook outside in our back porch/summer kitchen on a propane stove.
Your memory of your uncle is lovely. Chili is the best on the cookstove! I’m sorry to hear of his passing. I hope you are able to remember the good times together.

March 8, 2019 - 2:45 am

Ruth Hi! Do you do all your cooking and baking on the woodstove? If so, that’s amazing!! We had a fireplace insert at our old home, and there’s nothing like wood heat to warm you up. Your post reminds me of a memory of going to my uncle’s for ice skating. He had a little shack where he had a woodstove for cooking. He would make chili on top of it and hotdogs, which we enjoyed after iceskating. He just passed away a few days ago, so this really brought back a fond memory. Thankyou.

March 7, 2019 - 11:54 am

Gigi What a lovely memory, Teresa!

March 7, 2019 - 11:54 am

Gigi Oh, it would be fun for you to have, right up your alley! But you are in such a warm state, maybe you would not use it as much … still, it’s a great skill, I believe to have. I cooked on top of our back room woodstove for a year to show my husband I was serious about cooking with wood, so I could convince him to get the cookstove for the kitchen. 🙂

March 7, 2019 - 9:55 am

Monica Lovely, lovely, lovely. You and the cookstove! This might be my favorite blog post (pictures) you’ve done. I love everything about it. You are in your element, my friend. P.S. I may have shown my husband this and asked him for a woodstove…for the future…he said “very nice”…maybe I can hold on to hope??? Hugs! Have a lovely day. You are blessed!!

March 7, 2019 - 12:49 am

Teresa@ Simply Farmhouse What a lovely post, my grandmother cooked on a stove like this. We used to live in a 200 yr old farmhouse and in the kitchen was a wood-burning stove. Once our electric was knock out for 13 days from a ice storm and I enjoyed cooking on the top of this wood stove. This stove warmed our kitchen and it was the farmhouse main source of heat. There was many cozy days and nights i would sit in front of the wood-stove rocking our little ones or reading books. We’ve moved since then and I have missed having the warmth of the wood-stove. Thank you for such wonderful memories that a wood-stove brings to a home. Hugs!

To the {Future} Tea Parties

A true home is one of the most sacred of places. It is a sanctuary into which men flee from the world’s perils and alarms. It is a resting-place to which at close of day the weary retire to gather new strength for the battle and toils of tomorrow. It is the place where love learns its lessons, where life is schooled into discipline and strength, where character is molded.

J.R. Miller

It was early in the morning – the March timid sun was just barely peaking over the snowy horizon … a few winter birds were stirring and singing quietly from the tops of the pine tree. Without wanting to wake anyone, I tiptoed out the back door and slid into our family truck. My husband was still home before work and this was the only time I could slip away – as such, this was the  arranged time to go pick up a used teapot I had found on a used site.

You see, our last tea pot, which we use for Tea at Two on Tuesdays (and well, for tea whenever!) slid out of my hands the other week and shattered on the floor. How badly I felt as I picked up the pretty, broken pieces. It had been a lovely teapot and served our family well, even if only for a short time. It was a shame I broke it and it left me feeling a little bit sad.

Well, the unfortunate accident meant it was time to source out another good used teapot that would be well loved and used daily. After a few messages back and forth via the internet, with my joy, I located a pretty used teapot. The owner did not live near me, but, fortunately, her daughter lived on a street I grew up on half an hour away. We chatted a bit and arranged for the teapot to be delivered to her daughter, where I would drive and pick it up one morning. A perfect transaction.

When the seller asked me what I would be doing with the teapot, I told her about our little family tea parties, our times of reading together with tea and cookies and explained I had six daughters … surely, if the teapots survive all our family times, I will gladly pass on the teapots to my daughters when they are grown.

 

 

“Oh wow, that’s a lot of children!”, she responded, laughing. “I have three daughters and two sons.”

“What fun you must have had,” I replied, “Children are a lot of work, but it is also a great blessing to have them around!”

To this, the lady jokingly replied that her grown children were not all blessings most days …

“Maybe if I had more tea parties and read books with them, they’d be more of a blessing to me now,” she said, with a little laugh.

 

I pondered this statement as I drove back home, the new pretty teapot [and matching cream and sugar] sat safely nestled in the seat beside me.  Returning home, I carefully placed the teapot on the dining room hutch for the younger children to see. They admired how pretty it was, the delicate pink and blue flowers and asked when the peppermint tea would be served.

The morning continued and soon it was time for tea and a good read aloud session from The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling. The children gathered as my eldest daughter handed out her freshly baked cookies as a treat.

 

Some days with our tea time, we read poetry out loud. Other days, I catch up on our current book that we are reading out loud together.

I watched the children gather noisily around as I fingered the page in the chapter, waiting to begin the reading.

Strange, I thought to myself, that I had never seen the time spent together having tea as an investment in the future relationship … it somehow changed everything for me in that moment. Yes, it would be easier to go off and have tea myself with less spills, less interruptions and more quiet moments. But tea together, reading a good book and sitting around the fire suddenly seemed more important at this moment in time.

All this time of afternoon teas, boiling water, pouring tea and spending the extra time to lay out a tea table, opening great books and spending  half an hour or so reading … I had only see it for the moment; I had never thought about the long term investment … I really had not thought much about the future and what tiny seeds perhaps these little teas would be planting …

Later in the week, during nap times and quiet rests, after toys were picked up and big girls were assigned a quiet reading hour,  I walked into the back room and found my six year old with a tea table all set up. It was for mommy and her, she explained with a twinkle in her eye. Set next to a radiant, warm, fire, with the winter snow falling outside, it was a picture of true contentment and coziness. She poured the lukewarm peppermint tea and I pulled up a chair and joined her at the pretty little table.

A tiny seed was beginning to grow…

 

“Each day of our lives we make deposits in the memory banks of our children.”
— Charles R. Swindoll

 

P.S. Would you like a recipe for those delicious heart shaped cookies?

Heart Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 cup unsalted butter, softened
⅓ cup granulated sugar
½ cup light-brown sugar
1 large egg yolk
2 tsp vanilla extract
2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
1 ½ cups semi-sweet mini-chocolate chips

Cream together the butter and sugars. Add the egg yolk and vanilla.

Sift together the flour and salt, and add to the butter and sugar mixture one cup at a time, until completely incorporated. The dough will be a bit crumbly.

Mix in the chocolate chips.
Shape the dough into a disc shape and wrap in plastic and chill for 1/2 an hour.

Roll out the dough, cut and place on parchment paper. Chill again for about 15 minutes. Bake at 350 degrees until golden brown.

Enjoy with a pot of peppermint tea and read a good book with your children – no matter their age.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

March 1, 2019 - 12:59 pm

Gigi Debby, that is a great way of looking at it …
I love the story of you and your mom. How beautiful.

February 27, 2019 - 2:35 pm

Debby in Kansas, USA What a wonderful post! Might I also add that I think the Lord had something in mind when He matched up you and that teapot. He’s sneaky that way sometimes! There is still time for that Mom and her kids and most definitely with her grands.

A little story, if you don’t mind…My mom and I did not have a good relationship after she remarried when I was 7. It got progressively worse, no matter what I did. Flash forward to her failing health at 74. She left California and moved to Kansas with us. I dreaded it. Well, it turned out to be the best 16 mos. I could’ve hoped for before her death. I suspect that the regular tea/coffee times with sweets contributed to that… it was just a peaceful time with light chats.

February 27, 2019 - 6:19 am

Gigi Shirley, you are so encouraging. I fail daily and I am learning so much every day. God is gracious, thankfully!

February 26, 2019 - 2:48 pm

shirley All those precious seeds you are planting will reap a beautiful harvest of well trained, well adjusted grown children dear Gigi.

I had tears in my eyes reading this post and seeing the precious little ones.

You are doing an amazing job raising your children.

They are blessed to have such a wonderful mama, and I am sure they will realize that as they grow into adulthood.

Hugs from Shirley

February 25, 2019 - 7:56 pm

Lynnea Such a heartwarming lovely post of tea times with your children…what special memories are in the making!
The teapot is very pretty and those heart~shaped cookies look yummy.
Speaking of cookies, I recently baked Oatmeal Cookies using the recipe you posted about your third daughter making them for her Daddy.
My husband and I just finished the last few and think they are delicious…it’s a keeper recipe for sure. 🙂 ~Lynnea

February 25, 2019 - 4:12 pm

Gigi Peppermint is lovely and so is chamomile (it is calming). If your child is not used to tea, perhaps add a bit of honey. Fruit-infused tea is lovely, as well.

February 25, 2019 - 3:25 pm

Kristal Quick question for you, what recommendations do you have for tea for children?

February 25, 2019 - 12:27 pm

Kristal What that lady said to you resonates with me as well. Not only is the time we spend shaping our children’s character and relationships for today, but we are also shaping their character and relationships for the future. My prayer is that my adult children (when they get there that is) will become responsible, loving, and God-fearing adults, but will also love their family and still have great relationships with their siblings and parents. Your tea times look and sound wonderful. I am sure your children will have many fond memories of these as they get older! By the way, is your new teapot the one in the last picture? It is very lovely!

February 25, 2019 - 11:06 am

Teresa@ Simply Farmhouse Gigi, What a beautiful post ~ It does means so much to our children when we set a side a moment of our time with them. I love when something said touches our hearts and it helps us to realize this does matter. Lovely photo’s!

February 25, 2019 - 9:06 am

Monica Oh simply beautiful! It’s so neat how traditions occur..some purposefully and some just evolve. I haven’t read to all of my children collectively in a long time but do read to two individually every day and I have some others gather round to hear the book. Usually the child to whom I’m reading all ask for tea during that time or “honey lemon water” (water with honey and lemon mixed), so that seems like something we have created as a tradition. You’re right—so many of our traditions, methods, just ways of doing things are making memories for these children and building strong ties with parents and children and each other.
PS. Which was the teapot you picked up from the early morning excursion? They are all so beautiful!

Escape from Nap Time

“If I have not the patience of my Saviour with the souls who grow slowly;
if I know little of travail (a sharp and painful thing) till Christ be fully formed in them,
then I know nothing of Calvary’s love.”

~ Amy Carmichael

 

 

 

“He’s out of bed again,” I said, eyeing my husband, eyebrows raised and a look of surprise on my face.

It was night time. The sun had long set and evening sky was lit up with the beautiful moon. Everyone in our house was asleep – except for my husband and I – although we were fighting hard the sleepiness that was falling upon us – and our three year old son.

Our little boy was upstairs. Awake.

 

Pattering about in the hallway in his red plaid pajamas.

Little feet, tiptoeing — not so quietly around. We could hear the click of the Dutch bedroom door. The squeak of the old hinges.

He was sneaking into his sisters’ bedroom and finding only darkness as they slept soundly after a fun, busy Sunday afternoon at Grandma and Grandpa’s.

“He can’t be up again!” my husband wearily said, as he rose from his blue wingbacked chair, which was closely positioned near a cozy fire in our parlour. He trudged back up the wooden staircase, his feet purposefully making louder sounds than normal, perhaps to frighten our wayward son back into his bed.

A few minutes later, my husband returned and resumed his cozy spot by the warm fire.

It has been a strange week. My little boy, three, has been testing his limits by not staying in bed during nap time and secretly plotting escape routes with his sister who shares the same quiet hour upstairs… this can be tiresome for a mother of many after a long day of home schooling and housework. Those afternoon quiet hours are precious to me – we all enjoy a quiet hour of reading and rest time. We cannot rest as well when we are up and down the stairs six or seven times in an hour, putting the little one back into his bed.


And so the training continues – apparently into the evening hours, as well.

 

I know it is just a season. I remember all too well the last little girl who was an escapee from nap time. Now she stays in her bed just fine and we never have to ask her to go “back to bed.”

Patience.

It’s something I’m still working on.

 

Patience is not the ability to wait.
Patience is to be calm no matter what happens,

constantly take action to turn it to positive growth opportunities,
and have faith to believe that it will all work out in the end while you are waiting.”
Roy T. Bennett


When strangers meet me and see the lineup of children following behind me – and then they discover we homeschool – they, automatically, cry out, “Oh, you MUST have more patience than me! I could never do it!”

That, however, is not the truth. I am a sinner. And I make mistakes and I am not always patient, sadly. Having a large family to raise only means I have more opportunities to work on fixing my own personal character flaws. Yes, I’m sure it might be easier to be patient and calm when you are home alone without anyone to upset your day. My days are filled with opportunities to rest in the Lord and wait patiently, praying for the fruits of the Spirit to be evident in my own life.

I am not naturally a quiet person. It takes great effort for me to remain calm. I am working diligently – and failing often – on my character, attempting, with God’s help, to put patience and quietness in my list of working character traits.

Today is a new day and I will begin it with prayer for patience and calmness of spirit. And I will thank the Lord for my children that bring me more humbly to the foot of the cross.

 

 

 

 

February 20, 2019 - 2:50 am

R Love the pictures of your precious sons! So adorable in their coveralls, looking at the construction book 😉 so sweet!

February 18, 2019 - 5:59 pm

Gigi That is a good point, Debby – I see what you mean and can understand those long stretches bringing in worry time.
That is funny about the plastic pants. 🙂

February 18, 2019 - 5:58 pm

Debby in Kansas, USA I remember my brother doing that. He thought he was so sneaky! But I distinctly remember the crunching of his plastic pants when he was on the move!

The thing about having no children to teach me patience is that the solo time leaves my mind too unoccupied for such long stretches. Instead of learning patience, I’ve become a master worrier! Try as I might, it always creeps in.

February 18, 2019 - 2:41 pm

A domestic mama serving Christ Yes, my 2 year old is at a similar stage, but like you mentioned, seeing my older children who already passed through this stage helps me to be patient that this too shall pass. Even though they can be a handful,it is a precious age.❤

Sharing struggles helps us to know what to pray about for one another. I will remember to pray for you about this, I regularly pray for God to help me have a meek, quiet and sweet spirit. I don’t think it comes naturally to any woman after the fall, it is only through the Holy Spirit indwelling in us that we can be the type of woman the Lord wishes for us to be.

About the comment about having so many children and patience: I feel that those who purposefully limit are missing out, because I feel that the Lord helps perfect those areas in me with the more children I have, as I have a chance/need to manifest patience more than if I only had two older children. It is like the pressure that makes a jewel, without that pressure I do not believe I personally would have felt as dependent on the Lord for strength for the role of motherhood. I feel blessed to have as many children as I do. The Lord gives strength as we seek Him❤ This is not to put down those who cannot conceive, I am only speaking about those who scorn the idea of many children as a blessing.

I am not sure if you check your email on a regular basis, so I wanted to let you know I sent you an invite email.