Gigi Blog » The life and loveliness of Gigi's World

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  • Welcome to the Gigi Blog!

    Blessed to be a mother to half a dozen girls & one boy. Wife of an undertaker.
    Photographer. Homeschooler. Daughter of the King. Chicken and goat raiser.
    Lover of Jesus and all things pink and vintage. ♥

Canning up Blueberries

Our family went to our annual camping trip last week -but now we are back now into real life. It was a wonderful relaxing week away – the children had a great time connecting with camp friends. Abby and I truly enjoyed coffee and tea around the campfire, reading books, sitting and chatting and watching the girls play at the beach.  This was our 10th year at the same Christian campground – so thankful for a great week away.


When we returned home very late in the evening, my heart filled with joy as I quietly walked through the still home on my way to my nice comfy bed. The house smelled clean and fresh and, of course, it felt so large after being in a camper all week long! Even though I loved being away, I love returning home {even if it means the relaxing week is over …}


Right away, we started back into life during our busy summer season, beginning with a thousand loads of laundry, weeding the garden {still not fully accomplished!}, pulling up the garlic and picking the lovely beans that are ready. My head is full of ideas and projects and to-dos before the baby arrives, as well {why does that happen we I’m pregnant and not truly able to accomplish all these great ideas?!}.

Everything is coming along well with baby-in-tummy – and now it is really is time to get canning and prepping for baby, as we are now at 30 weeks. By Monday, the laundry was finished and I could progress to the next to do on the list.  I checked the local flyers and noticed blueberries were on sale. Comparing them to a local u-pick, it was actually thriftier to buy them from the grocery store (and, yes, they were still grown in Ontario).

 

So I bought 50  pints on my way to my midwife appointment this morning. The weeding has since paused while I resume some canning impulses. 🙂

 

This afternoon, the girls and I made blueberry jam and canned whole blueberries (a very simple project, if you are new to canning – this one is super easy and tasty). Raw packing blueberries makes a great addition to oatmeal in the cold winter, homemade muffins, over ice cream, in crisps, and more.

And, the jam is just so tasty!

 



 Pectin Free Blueberry Jam
6 cups of blueberries
2 cups of sugar
1/4 cup of lemon juice

Wash the berries and place them in a large pot. Mash them down as much as possible (we used a potato masher and a pastry cutter).  Add your sugar and lemon juice and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent burning.
Hire a trusty taste tester to ensure beautiful success.

Bring to a boil for about 15 minutes, stirring non stop.  I actually used our immersion blender to break up the blueberries as I am not a fan of super-chunky jam.
Using the metal spoon in the freezer test, you can check to see if your jam is ready at any time.
[Here’s how: place a metal spoon or plate into the freezer. Once it is cold, drop a bit of your warm jam on the spoon and run your finger through it. It is stays separated, it is jam! It it runs back together, you need to cook for a bit longer.]

Once the jam is ready, skim off the foam (and save it for your children because they love to eat the fun, purple foam!) and ladle into clean mason jars. Process in water bath for 25 minutes.

 

 

I also have two bushels of peaches on order from the local Mennonite store and 200 cobs of corn coming from the local organic farm around the corner. If they all happen to be ready at the same time, that would be very interesting. Let’s hope the corn waits until the peaches are safely put up for the winter.

Our green and yellow beans are also ready for canning from the garden. I am waiting for one more day so I can make sure my canner is full before I process them.

Have you been canning lately? What is on your canning to-do list? Have you ever canned corn? Last year, I froze it but I think I will try canning it this year. I prefer to see my jars lined up rather than have the produce stuffed into the freezer. It feels more organized, requires less hydro and is easier to use in a pinch.

Personally, I also think it tastes better!

 

 

 

 

 

August 3, 2017 - 6:28 am

Gigi - Caitlin, thank you for your encouragement! Well done with your first canning round! Watch out – it’s addictive. But why not invest money and time into a way to feed your family and build up tradition? It is a great way to have the children involved, as well. Many hands make light work. I’m so happy to hear about your peaches. Well done!

August 2, 2017 - 11:00 pm

Caitlin - I love your canning posts! Actually, I was inspired by your last canning post, and we just did our first canning ever. We went to a local farm and picked peaches. I adapted your canning recipe for strawberries and just used peaches instead- it turned out to be delicious! My husband can’t wait for us to do more, as he insisted it was better than store bought!
I have to say, I just love the pictures of your children. They are so sweet and wholesome, and it’s nice to see. My husband and I are hoping to be able to move to a more rural setting to have our own garden and more room for the children to spend time outdoors. I’m very inspired by your home and all you do!

August 2, 2017 - 9:41 pm

Gigi - Danessa, you will need a pressure canner for the corn. You slice the corn off the cob, fill jars and process in the pressure canner (not a a pressure cooker). Sometimes you can cook the corn sightly before canning, or you can choose to raw pack (fill the jars without cooking). Here is a link for you with detailed instructions: http://www.simplycanning.com/canning-corn.html

August 2, 2017 - 9:23 pm

Danessa stride - I was wondering how do you can or bottle your corn?

August 2, 2017 - 8:22 pm

Gigi - Katy, you have been busy! It is a great feeling to see all those jars, isn’t it? I don’t think we planted enough beans this year. I may have to get some more. I underestimated our growing family’s needs.

August 2, 2017 - 8:21 pm

Gigi - Sarah, glad to hear that canned corn is the way to go. Do you have a recipe to share? 🙂

August 2, 2017 - 8:20 pm

Gigi - Oh Jen, congratulations on moving! Did you find that farmhouse of your dreams? 🙂
Blueberries are fun to can – easy and something the children can help with. We are starting our peaches tomorrow. I do so enjoy canning! It is a good pastime to fill up that provision room!

August 2, 2017 - 5:26 pm

Jen Heemskerk - Love love love all these canning posts. So far we have managed to do rhubarb relish and strawberry jam. I want to do blueberries so this was just a perfectly timed post! We are moving, so I may have to wait- as I dont think my hubby will appreciate moving tons of canning supplies- but I love the idea of having a provision in our new place!!

August 2, 2017 - 8:05 am

Sarah - Your blueberries look lovely! We purchased a crate of peaches last night, but they need a couple days to ripen fully. I am planning to can pickles today, since we have had an abundance of cucumbers in our garden this year. Here in NY the local corn has been delicious! We hope to can corn too. I think it is easier than freezing corn since you don’t have to cook the corn first. The pictures of you little ones helping are precious! : )

August 2, 2017 - 6:44 am

Katy - I have been canning as well! 🙂 The green beans have been growing in abundance in our gardens! Yesterday, I canned all day! I still have another canner full to do today as well! Such a blessing! 🙂 I think I will be doing peaches soon too!

Glad you enjoyed a time of camping with your family and friends! It’s always nice to have some time to relax for a bit!

{Not} Getting with the Times

“What is the name at that dentist we need to book with?”

I asked my husband this question while visiting him at work a few weeks ago. We had discussed the idea of braces for two of our children and needed to make an appointment. He pulled out a heavy barely-used phone book from the shelf near their office phone and skimmed the listings quickly for the dentist number.

His younger brother, who was nearby, scoffed, pulled out his iphone and quickly tapped the screen, saying, “Get with the times, guys.”
He handed over his phone and showed us the number we were looking for – all in the same amount of time it took for my husband to locate the dentist’s number in the actual phone book.

 

 

What does it really mean to get with the times? There is something inside me that balks at this idea of having every modern conveniences at our fingertips.

Recently, a friend and I were headed to a homeschool book sale located a few hours from our homes. We were relying on her husband’s GPS to get us to the location. Of course, to make the night interesting, the GPS battery died and we were left scrambling at a map and stopping at local gas stations for directions. We were late, but we made it eventually.

I cannot help but notice how glued society is to their screens of choice – young and old alike. It is disturbing. I really hope there is a wake up soon among my own generation and those younger on how addictive these screens are – and how they are not always as beneficial as one thinks.

Studies prove that children have more anxiety and developmental issues in this modern way to raise a child. A true childhood – free from screens and digital advancements – is hard to find. And one attached to the technology world is not nearly as lovely or helpful as you might imagine.

Perhaps, if we relied less on the modern technology, we would not stumble so much when it fails.

 

 

I’m okay with being behind the times – in more ways than not wanting to own a cell phone.

 

P.S. Yes, I am writing this from my very ancient, out dated 11 year old laptop – which keys missing on the keyboard, not to mention the non-ability to use it for printing, downloading, etc. It does a good job of helping me edit photos (when it wants to) and I can access my blog but that is about it.

 

 

July 30, 2017 - 12:49 pm

Gigi - Megan, message me at gillianclairgauthier@gmail.com. My email has not been working properly!

July 29, 2017 - 6:43 am

Maike - How refreshing to read the same that goes through my mind every day. Already seeing others being infront of their screens drives me crazy. The modern pimp machines that completely make your meal and you just add in ingredients. The coffee machines, ipads, smartphones, … I really don’t think it does any good. My family is addicted to all of these. They think I’m crazy in my thinking. And yes, sometimes I think a working cellphone, or google maps, or a quicker camera than my professional big one would be better. My laptop dying every couple of minutes sometimes is driving me crazy. Some things seem practical, but whenever I’m not surrounded by high tech people, I don’t really care. It leaves me more calm, peaceful, satisfied. I remember as child it was fun to find destinations and follow the old school road map. I honestly couldn’t be without my laptop, but everything else I don’t need. I love to use a whisk or fork for stirring dough together, it brings fullfilling joy to do it myself, trying to use herbs instead of pills, healing myself and listening. I always scribble down paths I need to walk and tell a time when to meet where. It works fine and worked fine back in time, just for the “uptodate” people these simple things are not working anymore. But it would make everyone feel so much better.

July 27, 2017 - 2:48 am

Megan - Hi Gillian,
Can you email me at the above address? I am posting & sending emails but I might be using the wrong email because I am not hearing anything back. I can pick up the childrens reference bible from abbey in town if that is easier:) i am really wanting to start using it with the kids this summer. Thanks so much 🙂

French Bread Recipe & the {Coziness} of Being Home

Today was a day for running a few errands … there was a quick visit to a hospital for a blood product needed for the pregnancy, a midwife appointment, a few stops in between … a drop off of the younger children at grandma’s and a pick up … it did not take long to have all the errands finished but it was exhausting, nonetheless. It seemed that everywhere I drove while in town, there were lineups and traffic and summer construction on the roads … people were impatient and bustling about, it was busy and rushed.


And it was only errands in a small town! I cannot imagine the noise of a big city or the stress of commuting on highways to work every day. Finally pulling into our gravel driveway later this afternoon, with the children sleepy eyed and yawning in their car seats, we were all happy to get out of the car and stretch our legs. I said a quick thankful prayer that we were home.

Ahhh, home. The best place to be.

Don’t you love coming home? I think our children, and yes, especially our husbands, should love coming home. Yes, there will always be chores and to-do-lists and things to work on around the home, but that is okay. When you work around your home, cleaning, scrubbing, mowing the lawns, weeding gardens, organizing cupboards, cooking healthy meals, these are all ways to bless the home and the members within. Home should be a haven from the outside craziness and the busy world that keeps on going and going.

“Home is the nicest word there is.”
-Laura Ingalls

There are many nights that my husband cannot come home from work until very late. It is unforunate, but that is the way it is in the funeral business. Tonight, he is working late and I feel badly for him. Our husbands don’t always have the blessings of enjoying “being home” when they are the main financial provider. Many jobs are demanding – I know my husband’s line of work is way more intense than I ever realized. Therefore, his time at home should be comforting, even if he still has his daddy-hubby chores that need tending.
Although I have no idea if my husband notices, the girls and I always do a 5:30 p.m. clean up of the house and outside so that daddy can come home to a clean environment on the nights he is here for dinner. I have learned from wiser, older woman that it is a good thing to have the home somewhat clean and orderly when your husband returns home, to have dinner ready, to have the home smelling scrumptious and inviting. Sometimes, I must admit,  I even plan my bread baking upon my husband’s arrival because, truly, would that not be a welcoming smell to come home to? Who can resist the delicicous aroma of homemade bread wafting through the home?

 

 

So now with that confession made, may I share a lovely bread recipe with you?
It is similar to the older recipe I posted but even more simple. I call it a French Bread recipe, simply because I shape it as a French loaf for our dinner meals.

4 teaspoons of yeast – poured into 2 cups of warm water – stir and let it rest for 8 minutes or so.
Next, measure out 6 1/2 cups of flour – I vary my flour. You may use what suits your family best.
some salt for flavour
Once the water/yeast combination is frothy, mix this into your flour in a large bowl. I use a spatula to mix these ingredients.
After it is all mixed, I leave it to rest for 10 minutes.
Upon returning, I will add my salt and start kneading until the dough is soft and stretchy – roughly, 100 kneads.
Shape into the bread style you desire and let it rise until doubled in size. Slash the tops if you wish.
This recipe will make two loaves of bread.

This is a lovely dough. You can add cinnamon and make it a cinnamon loaf for breakfast.
Or add a dash of garlic salt, parlsey, oregano and basil for a loaf that is scrumptious with spaghetti.
You can also brush with egg yolk and sprinkle some sesame seeds on top for variety. You can add a dash of sugar and make it a sweeter loaf of bread, as well.

Bake at 350 until golden brown or until the loaf sounds hollow when you tap the sides.
Sit back and enjoy that delicious, homey smell of homemade bread … when the bread has cooled, you may slice and serve it up to your family.

Do Do you see the lovely glass dish the loaf is sitting on? A dear friend of my mom’s knew that I would love this plate when she saw it at a store. With a generous spirit, she purchased it and sent it along to my family through my mom. Well, YES, indeed, I loved the plate the first time I saw it – it is a faint pink and oh so pretty! …Can you see it is etched beautifully with the phrase “Give us this day our daily bread”? It is a very pretty vintage plate.

 



When I showed my girls this lovely plate, Lacey, my eldest, spotted it quickly. This was an identical  replica of the plate from Laura Ingalls Wilder’s home! Isn’t that just spectacular?! You can read more about the story of Laura’s bread plate here. The bread plate now holds a very special place in our home and is only used for *very* special occasions. It is a very special plate to us, indeed. {Thank you so much, Mrs. Simpson!}

 

July 22, 2017 - 9:55 am

Brenda (Gigi's Mom) - Great blog, Gillian. I remember we always cleaned and had the house ready for dad too, I liked to vacuum and bake right before he came home. I learned that from wiser woman too! I also remember Dorothy Pleadwell said to sautee onions, even in a separate pan, as it created an amazing WELCOME home smell for hard working daddys!! PS I just saw Kathy yesterday, she will be blessed that you are enjoying the plate. Love how God works His “magic”. xoxo

July 21, 2017 - 6:58 pm

Gigi - 🙂 Hoping we can catch up soon, Lauren.

July 21, 2017 - 6:58 pm

Gigi - Thanks! And amen to being the favorite place!

July 21, 2017 - 6:57 pm

Gigi - Stacy, thank you for the kind words of encouragement. Enjoy your family!

July 21, 2017 - 3:47 pm

Stacy - I love reading your blog. It is so reassuring that I am right where God intended me to be and that is home. Keep writing

July 21, 2017 - 12:11 pm

Lauren A - Nice plaaaate!!!!!!!! So special!

July 21, 2017 - 7:17 am

Katy - I love to be home. It is definitely my favorite place to be! 🙂

The bread looks wonderful!

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam {without pectin}

 

{Aren’t my helpers so sweet?}

 

The rain is gently falling, watering our gardens and rose bushes … this has been a very rainy summer. I suppose in some ways it is a blessing.

 

Clean laundry is drying on a lovely drying rack we found at a local Mennonite thrift store (one I have had my eye on for a long time, but could not afford the shipping! So this was a blessing indeed!), we have just returned from a lovely morning and lunch outing with other friends … and now cuppa tea is poured for the afternoon and fresh bread is baking in the oven. How is your day going so far?

 


I’m still working on my canning schedule. I have canned (dried) beans and a scrumptious tomato soup in the past week, along with some delicious ruby red strawberry rhubarb jam.

Which recipe should I share? I think I shall share the strawberry rhubarb jam today and the tomato soup shortly. Yes, this is a common jam to can, but I will still share the recipe, as we are at the tail end of the sweet strawberry season.

First off, let me say, I do like to make jam without pectin. I’m not sure I have done enough research on store-bought pectin – is is healthy? Safe? I know there is natural pectin in many fruits (such as apples and lemons), so why not use that instead? If you know more about pectin, please do share. I just like to not have to run out to the store for that one forgotten package of pectin and would rather use less store bought ingredients.

Strawberry Rhubarb Jam {without pectin}

 – 8 cups of freshly washed and diced strawberries
(I fill my big stock pot with berries and do not really measure –
is that terrible? Well, it works.)
– four cups of chopped rhubarb

 – 5-7 cups of sugar
(I have greatly reduced the sugar amount, as the original recipe calls for 10 cups. Please use your judgement. I do not need my jam to be super sweet –
and I know the sugar helps set the jam, but if you do not mind a runnier jam, then by all means, reduce the sugar.)

 – 1 cup of lemon juice

 

Wash and dice the strawberries and place them in a large pot with the rhubarb.  Mash together with the sugar and allow the mixture to sit for a while, even as long as over night or just a few hours on the counter.
Once the time is up, cook over medium heat, stirring often. Eventually, you will want to turn up the heat so you boil the jam for about 5 minutes, stirring very frequently. Add the lemon juice and cook/boil for five more minutes.

 


Now it is time to put into your beautifully, washed mason jars. Any size is fine. I vary mine so I can give them as gifts or feed my large family for breakfast.
Wipe rims clean and place clean, new lids on the jars. Water bath in boiling water for 10 minutes. Listen for the ‘ping’ and know your winter will have lovely, ruby red jam for your family to enjoy.

A great way to use jam in future recipes is to make a jam bar. They are oh so yummy! Here is the recipe. My daughter made up the mixes and we placed them in jars for our pantry. Such a quick easy dessert for a busy day!

 

 

P.S. We have had some dreadful predator attacks on our birds. I have lost all my goslings, which was truly heart breaking. They were doing so well and were getting so big. We have lost ducks and chickens in large numbers this summer. The predator(s) is even burrowing into our barn at night and finding it’s way into the barn underground. It is very frustrating – we have trapped a few animals that we think are the predators, but if the attacks continue, then we have to continue to be vigilant. Last night, I heard a terrible screech and cry from the field beside our barns. I am afraid something else was caught and killed. Many of the attacks are in the daytime, as well.

July 17, 2017 - 2:27 am

Lauren - Gillian! So sad to hear about the attacks!! I wonder if a dog might help ?? We had a mink kill one of our guinea fowls, and something else attack another. But we have our chickens in a fenced area… it’s not a run per say but it’s almost half an acre. I wonder if a fence would help? Or an electric fence, part of it buried…?

July 14, 2017 - 7:05 am

Gigi - P.S. Our guess is weasel or raccoon for the predator. It has not killed the animals that are in large pens (like a dog run) so we think MAYBE raccoon, as a weasel could easily fit through the links of the fence. It is very upsetting and frustrating. We have sat out for hours and still not seen what it is. We have had weasel attacks in the past and they are vicious! We have had skunks kill chickens, too.

July 14, 2017 - 7:04 am

Gigi - Oh, that is a good tip! I have a strange “cherry” like tree that has very tart berries. I cannot figure out what they are, but we thought they would be cherries all along. I wonder if they are choke cherries. That would be helpful in jam making … love the memory of stirring your grandma’s jam. Grandmas are SO special!

July 14, 2017 - 12:20 am

Lynda Lu Gibb - Not good news about your birds.. is the predator a weasel or a mink? Nasty !
On another note, the jam looks so pretty and I am sure very yummy. My grandmother used green apples for pectin in her jams.. just threw some underripe green apples in the pot and cooked the jam, often saskatoon, chokecherry or strawberry, less often, peach.She would just fish out the apples before jarring it. I stood up on a stool and stirred sometimes when she was busy washing and drying the jars. O, I can almost smell the “scortchy” sweet jam drips ..memories are sweet. Thank for the memory nudge.

Worth Calling a Career

“Being a mother is worth fighting for,
worth calling a career, worth the dignity of hard work.”
~ Edith Schaeffer

 

It always seems the sunshine and warm weather makes the children sprout up faster. And it is on those days, when I see their freckles spotting, their eyes twinkling, their little feet splashing in puddles and bigger feet running through the green grass, I thank God for the blessings of just being home.

I am so grateful and thankful to be given the task of being a stay at home mother. I remember the days when I was busy and running a photography business, rushing out the door in the evening, dropping the girls off at my mother in laws for babysitting, arranging to leave work when my husband would be coming home … those days are long gone and for that I am truly grateful. God is gracious and merciful.

 

I had a dear friend who always said, “Gillian, clients will always be there, but before you know it, your children will be grown.” She, too, was a photographer, and she knew the love of photography, the joy of having a great session and producing images for families that they would love for years. However, she was also wiser and knew that her children would grow too quickly. Now, her children are grown and mine are quickly following suit. I am so grateful for her words of advice that encouraged me to not keep up with every other photographer, to slow down and to love being a mommy.


I always knew I wanted to be a stay at home mother, as my own mom had set a great example. I knew I would never put my children into daycare and promptly quit my full time job after the birth of our first daughter. But somewhere along the way, the temptation and the lure and the world marred my vision. It was not “enough” to be a stay at home mom – you had to have something that made you unique alongside of that, so it seemed. Many women are still like that today – they are at home, but they are busy, too busy, filling their time up with other activities, hobbies, home-based businesses, the attraction of having that extra income, that keep their eyes shifting from children to work, from book keeping to how to get make more money. No, I am not against home-based businesses (they can be a great blessings in financially tight times)! It just seems there needs to be a very strict balance between your duties as a mother and wife and the business you are running on the side.

If you are “bored” at home or not feeling fulfilled … maybe it is time to ask the question: what else can I be doing at home to bless the family, bless others with my family, save money, make things easier for my husband? Surely there is something that can be done around the home to fill your time. When I wake up in the morning, my feet are literally itching to hit the floor and start another day. Each day holds a new challenge, a new blessing, a new adventure – and I am JUST a stay at home mom! I know the world can appear exciting, making money is fulfilling, meeting other adults and clients is satisfying socially … but I just beg you to keep your eyes on your family and the Lord and see where He is leading you.

 

Your workplace may be closer than you realize – inside your own front door.

 

P.S. I’m heading to my midwife this morning for my 28 week checkup. I feel so much bigger this time – perhaps my muscles are so stretched out after 8 pregnancies! Looking forward to hearing the heart beat. Braxton Hicks are terrible with each pregnancy and definitely happening in this one. I am trying to get all my major chores done in the morning and then physically rest a bit in the afternoon.

July 15, 2017 - 10:28 am

Gigi - Molly, I will be praying for you as you seek God’s will in this area of your life. I do know all to well what you are feeling. Your children need you. There is no faith unless we step out where it is unknown. God will provide, I believe that.

July 15, 2017 - 9:58 am

molly - Oh my, this post speaks to me so much. To the point, I’m in tears this morning. The part about leaving the kids to go to shoots…Yes, that is the season of life I’m in right now and every time I leave my two girls or tell them “I can’t right now, momma has to edit”, I feel a sense of guilt. I truly feel I’m lacking as a mother and wife because of it.

I have followed you for a few years now and I admire what you’ve done with your children so much. Thank you for following the Lord and making it public, it is encouraging to me as a Christian. This post has been one of the top things that I’ve been praying about for a while now. Saying “no” to my wonderful clients is so hard but feeling more and more pulled to do what is best for my family. This just may be my sign! Thank you!!!

July 12, 2017 - 5:52 am

Gigi - Yes, I suppose you do know the feelings of multiple pregnancies very well. 🙂
Regarding the house, we do most of the general tidying up, cleaning in the morning and since it is summer, there is a lighter school work load but we may do school whenever it pleases in the summer (sometimes, it is just so hot in the afternoon, it will be a good time to do some history. Other times, if it’s a rainy day, morning is great). Later in the evening around 5, we tidy before dinner again and then after dinner, we do have night time chores, that involve putting animals into barn, cleaning up the mudroom from all our multiple entries (boy, does that get dirty!), etc. I try to have the girls have a clean room when they go to bed. Not perfect, but at least tidy. They are in training!

July 12, 2017 - 5:49 am

Gigi - I search high and low for those dresses – thrift store and such. There is a Mennonite thrift store about an hour from my home. I try to go twice a year to see if they have dresses. I have not mastered making a dress yet – but that would be an amazing thing one day to do!

July 11, 2017 - 6:57 pm

Our Home of Many Blessings - Oh! You have a little one that looks adorable in overalls as well!!!Where do you shop for the girlies dresses and such?I never see them anywhere….or do you make them???

July 11, 2017 - 6:50 pm

Our Home of Many Blessings - I love this post!!! You have a gift for writing and touching hearts! We have 8 children as you know and I know your pregnancy symptoms all to well. Seems like my braxton hicks contractions were more and more earlier with each pregnancy. Do you normally follow a house cleaning and sit down schoolwork routine on a normal day?

July 11, 2017 - 3:54 pm

Sarah @ The Life of This Mother - Gigi, that comment above from Edith Schaeffer is so good. That book, What Is A Family?, has been so pivotal to the vision I have for our family life and our children’s upbringing. Love your blog, and congratulations on another beautiful baby coming a long.

July 11, 2017 - 12:36 pm

Gigi - Lynda, you are so encouraging. Thank you. Your words mean a lot.

July 11, 2017 - 12:35 pm

Gigi - Blessings to you, Katy!

July 11, 2017 - 10:36 am

Lynda Lu Gibb - Such a good choice.. Your blessings for that choice are visible everyday! I am thankful you are able to know that and treasure it. I look forward to reading all about how you fill your days and your children’s hearts . Thank you for sharing.

July 11, 2017 - 8:21 am

Katy~TheCountryBlossom - A beautiful post! I couldn’t agree more!! 🙂