Fulfilled Fridays 15 Linkup

 

We had a big success this week. The Inventor had a rough time at math last year.

Because she had done so well in 2nd grade, we had advanced her into a Gifted & Talented Math class for 3rd grade. That was a mistake. By the end of the year she was really struggling. Her confidence was shot and she felt like she would never be able to do the simplest calculations.

I pulled her out of G&T math and placed her in regular 4th grade math. Because of the way the math program is designed, she is essentially repeating the same skills she was supposed to learn last year.

This year is all about confidence building.

And yesterday she found her confidence.

She has been working hard learning her multiplication facts using some minecraft coloring sheets. Over the last couple weeks, I have seen her slowly like math again.

But yesterday she started division. Division was her downfall last year. Once that entered our lives, math was evil. She was anxious, she was nervous, I think she even lost a little sleep over it earlier this week.

But she did it!

I introduced the lesson and gave her some problems to work out on her own. About 10 minutes later I heard her yell from the other room, “Division isn’t that bad and I had nothing to fear! I can do it!!!!!”

Confidence building for sure.

Being with her in that moment was the highlight of my week.

What was the highlight of your week?

If you’re a blogger, link up. If not, I’d love to hear about it in the comments below.

~Crystal

 

Now it is your turn!

There are very few rules. You don’t have to follow me on social media or subscribe although I’d love it if you do. Links to where you can find me on social media are off to your right.

If you’re feeling extra generous, tell others where to find this link-up. I’ll make it easy for you if you use twitter!

[Tweet “I linked up at Fulfilled Fridays. Come join me! #linkup #bloggers”]

You don’t even have to link back but it’d be awesome if you did!

Simply share a post, recent or in the past about anything good. Perhaps it is a recipe, craft, a moment in time, something you overcame, something to inspire, or just a journal. Anything goes.

If you don’t have a blog, leave a comment and share below.

Let’s celebrate why our lives are fulfilled!!!!

 

And if you have a few minutes after posting your link, please spread the joy. Take some time and visit some of the other bloggers.

Grab my button:

 

 

Living In Green Grass
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The Linkup:

The link-up goes live every Friday at 7AM MST and closes the following Thursday at 5 PM MST. By linking up at Fulfilled Fridays you will be added to a weekly link-up reminder email. You can unsubscribe at any time and will not be re-subscribed if you link up in the future.
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Faith is in the missing puzzle pieces

faith is in the missing puzzle pieces

geralt / Pixabay

The other day I had a conversation with my husband. We were discussing a parenting decision we had made some time ago. I remembered the decision but not the why’s. The girls are challenging me on it and I wanted to explain to them the our reasons but all I could say was, “Because that is the decision your dad and I came to.”

There are times when I’m sick that my memory starts to fade. I forget things. Sometimes it is a conversation had while living in brain fog, but other times it is something from my past. It slips out of my brain, a missing piece to the puzzle, sometimes found in the future and sometimes lost forever.

In this case I could remember what we decided and even that I was very passionate about the decision. I know we were in complete agreement.

I even remembered a few reasons why we came to the decision. But the only reasons I remembered dealt with the maturity of the girls. They are now more mature and have grown beyond my concerns.

There were other reasons too, of that I’m sure.

Reasons that were grounded through faith and prayer. Reasons that have slipped my mind.

I sat there talking around the issue, probing him for the reasons and all he kept saying was, “well we decided that because it came down to why.”

Finally I had to confess:

I had forgotten the why’s. I had forgotten the reasons and even the process in which we came to our decision.

I was missing critical pieces of the puzzle.

I couldn’t find them, I couldn’t place them, all I could do was walk in faith and belive that we were doing what we felt best for our girls–without any understanding of why.

As a parent that is so difficult.

I don’t have the answers.

Somewhere they have been lost in my memory and I’m unable to retrieve them.

It is something I’ve learned to accept. It is something I’ve learned to deal with.

To the outside world, I just look like a forgetful overwhelmed multi-tasking mom in these moments.

My children are slightly aware. They know I forget. Miss Crafty knows she has a better memory than me. I tell her something fully expecting her to remember because I won’t–and 99% of the time she does. I have learned to trust and rely on her more than a parent should of their 10 year old child.

My husband knows the true depths of my loss. I saw it in his eyes when I confessed to forgetting. With a simple whisper all he could utter was, “I didn’t know you were that bad again.”

Tears welled up in my eyes and I had no reply. I didn’t know when I lost it. Perhaps recently, possibly last year when my body was sicker than it had been in years.

For me, I have come to terms and accepted this. It allows me to live in ignorant contentment some days. I don’t remember all the pains of my past. I don’t remember all the details or people in my life. But that allows me to enjoy the here and now without all the baggage of what has been done.

And in my own tiny way, it encourages my faith.

I live in a world of what, but don’t always know the why’s.

 

Living in faith is knowing that God has provided me with the whats. He is putting the pieces of the puzzle in as they need to be there.

If there is a missing piece, it doesn’t mean that the picture is incomplete. Perhaps those blanks are not needed to fill in the entire frame.

Sometimes I feel I’m waiting for God to fill in the puzzle when He’s given me all I need. I see the missing pieces. I see the missing memories. I see the missing answers.

But God doesn’t.

He sees through the blanks. He sees around the holes. He sees that everything needed is there.

And that is where faith comes in.

Faith is taking that step, walking in the belief that God is guiding you and directing in you in the proper direction. Faith is knowing that if you need that last piece of the puzzle it will be there.

 

My memory loss was a struggle for a long time.

I reached out to friends, asking them to tell me stories of my life, looking at them to fill in the blanks. I was living in the past. Looking for things that were not there.

Once I moved beyond the loss, I started focusing on the present. If I didn’t have memories of the past, I could at least enjoy the now and make some more here.

For the parts that are missing? I have faith that when I need them, others who I trust will be there to fill in the blanks for me.

 

How does faith guide you when you are missing parts of the puzzle?

 

~Crystal

 

Shared with:

Thought-Provoking Thursday, Thriving Thursday, Thoughtful Thursdays, Essential Fridays

When your mission field is at home

I'm not guilty doing my mission work at home

I used to feel guilty.

Guilty about what my friends, neighbors, and strangers thought of me.

Guilty because I happily lived in my house while others around me were hurting so desperately.

Guilty because I was content.

Guilty because I wasn’t doing enough to help society.

Guilty because I was selfishly focusing on my family instead of spreading God’s love with the world.

Guilty because being a missionary isn’t my calling, yet Matthew 28:19-20 tells me:

“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. and behold, I am with you always to the end of the age.”

Go

Make disciples of all nations.

Jesus said to do it.

So if I don’t go, am I guilty of ignoring the word of Christ?

In my contentment, in my happiness being where I am at and with what God has provided for my family, I felt guilty.

Guilty because life was so perfect.

Yes we have our struggles, but nothing compared to those in other countries who are risking their lives on a daily basis to simply pray to God.

The courage they have. The faith they have. Does that make them greater than me?

And what of those who will die before they are told of God’s great love and His mercy?

Am I guilty for wanting to spend time with my daughters in the comforts of our American home?

Am I guilty for not feeling pulled to those in other countries?

Forget about doing missions in another country. I don’t even feel called to do missions in my own country, state, or neighborhood.

I am the silent person in the background, loving and living by faith, leading by quiet example.

Guilty because I’m not openly spreading the word of God.

Guilty because I don’t knock on my neighbor’s doors and invite them to church.

Guilty because they see us leave on Sunday morning, but don’t know WHERE we are going. They assume but they don’t know.

[Tweet “Am I using contentment as an excuse to not share about the love of #Christ?”]

I am not a missionary or preacher. I don’t feel comfortable talking about my faith to strangers. To acquaintances I will discuss matters of faith if the conversation naturally flows there, but I’m not one to intentionally make it happen.

I am happy and at peace. I am content being where God has me and living the life He designed for me.

Yet at the same time, I am leaving out one important thing.

Go.

Make disciples of all nations.

And in that one little 3 letter word, my guilt faded away.

ALL nations.

Not just the village in Africa or China. Not just the inner city in Germany or England.

Not only the inner city or impoverished rural community in America.

Not even a commandment to be a missionary to those in my community.

But in ALL nations, ALL places, everywhere.

What better place to begin than to those who I am closest?

I have 2 precious souls with whom I can impact in a very real way.

2 precious souls who think I know everything for 10 years.

2 precious souls who think I know about half of everything for 3 years.

And 2 precious souls who think I know nothing for 5 years, only coming to me in their darkest moments when they are the most vulnerable.

I have been called to the mission field.

My mission field looks green. A green painted house and a green tinted roof surrounded by a green patch of weeds and grass.

And inside the green are two lively spirits who I can give a foundation to before they step out into the world. A world which isn’t always the most friendly or kind, but a world I hope and pray they are ready for.

A little outside the green but still in my heart are friends and loved ones. Those who I can encourage and pray for. Those who I can support in their dreams, goals, and struggles.

I believe God has made me content because I am exactly where He wants me, doing exactly what He desires.

Your mission field may be a different color, and even involve a different nation, and for that, I say GO.

But if your GO is to stay at home and nurture whoever God has placed around you, I say listen to that. Listen to your spirit and STAY….STAY and be a missionary right where you are.

What does your mission field look like? Are you called to be somewhere else or content right where you are?

 

~Crystal

 

Shared With:

Let’s be Friends Blog Hop, Wake up Wednesday, Whatever Wednesday, Faith & Fellowship Blog Hop, Friendship Friday, Monday’s Musings, Motivational Monday, Soul Survival

Fulfilled Fridays 14 Linkup

Prawny / Pixabay

My husband and I have been out of the house, alone and without kids twice in the last week. With the exception of the girls trips with grandparents over the summer, I cannot remember the last time we were out alone simply for the purpose of spending time together.

Last Friday night was spontaneous. We both had a sweet tooth and there was nothing but healthy food in the kitchen. I looked at him out of the corner of my eye and asked if he wanted to run to the grocery store.

Within 5 minutes we had our shoes on, I was handing the girls my phone, and we were out the door. All the girls knew was that we needed to run an errand.

Once we got home we hid our junk food in the garage and waited for them to go to bed before having a private indulgence.

And no, it didn’t turn out like this…

On Wednesday evenings I usually take the girls to church and grab some groceries while my husband stays home and does homework.

This week he surprised me and said he wanted to come alone. All we did was grab drinks at McDonald’s but it was still nice to be out with him alone.

Now that the girls are getting older I think we are going to have more moments like this–and I’m looking forward to each one of them.

~Crystal

 

Now it is your turn!

There are very few rules. You don’t have to follow me on social media or subscribe although I’d love it if you do. Links to where you can find me on social media are off to your right.

If you’re feeling extra generous, tell others where to find this link-up. I’ll make it easy for you if you use twitter!

[Tweet “I linked up at Fulfilled Fridays. Come join me! #linkup #bloggers”]

You don’t even have to link back but it’d be awesome if you did!

Simply share a post, recent or in the past about anything good. Perhaps it is a recipe, craft, a moment in time, something you overcame, something to inspire, or just a journal. Anything goes.

If you don’t have a blog, leave a comment and share below.

Let’s celebrate why our lives are fulfilled!!!!

 

And if you have a few minutes after posting your link, please spread the joy. Take some time and visit some of the other bloggers.

Grab my button:

 

 

Living In Green Grass
<div align="center"><a href="http://www.livingingreengrass.com" title="Living In Green Grass"><img src="http://www.livingingreengrass.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/07/Fulfilled-Fridays-Button.jpg" alt="Living In Green Grass" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

 

The Linkup:

The link-up goes live every Friday at 7AM MST and closes the following Thursday at 5 PM MST. By linking up at Fulfilled Fridays you will be added to a weekly link-up reminder email. You can unsubscribe at any time and will not be re-subscribed if you link up in the future.
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How to Turn Tablecloths into Curtains

tablecloths to curtains final square picture

[pinterest]
 

We live on a small budget. Every penny is accounted for and things like curtains are not in the budget.

To help us keep a tight budget, we try to reuse everything we can.

Several years ago my husband was given a sack of banquet tablecloths and napkins for free. He brought them home, handed them to me, and said, “I don’t know what you’d use these for, but I thought you could do something with them.”

I saw curtains.

Over the next few days I went to the store, picked out some dye, and made the girls checked curtains to replace the blankets that covered their windows.

I had many tablecloths left over and planned to take down all the blankets and make curtains for every window.

But things happened and I never was able to complete that task. I lost the tablecloths and so my main front window continued to be decorated with deer and wolf fleece blankets.

The beautiful blanket "curtains" that I've looked at for 9 years. This was the last window with blanket curtains.

The beautiful “curtains” that I’ve looked at for 9 years. This was the last window with blanket curtains.

Imagine my surprise when I found 4 tablecloths hidden under my bed this weekend.

I knew it was finally time to finish my last window and get all the blankets down and put up real curtains.

 

Turn Tablecloths into Curtains

Materials:

  1. Tablecloths or cloth napkins. You need enough material to cover the window twice.
  2. Rit Dye
  3. Tape measure
  4. Sewing machine
  5. Thread

 

Directions:

  1. Dye your tablecloths the desired color. These were dyed many years ago. Some had temporarily covered a window when some mini blinds broke so they were sun faded. This is where the creativity begins. You can make them any color to match your current decor!
  2. Design your pattern. Some of my windows are solid colors. Others are made out of 18-inch square napkins put in a checkerboard design. It is up to you. I always use a solid color for the backing (or outside) of the curtains. If you want plain curtains move to step 6, otherwise cut your tablecloths and lay them out in the desired pattern. My sun faded curtains were in perfect squares. I cut each tablecloth in half to highlight the fading. I also make sure I have a finished edge on 3 sides of my curtain panel. It makes finishing much easier. I generally measure for width and cut later for length. Instead of trimming a tablecloth for width, I simply make another curtain panel and have lots of ruffles within the curtain.
  3. Pin your pattern together, wrong sides out so you can hide your seams. This will be what you see on your curtains from the inside of your house.curtains stitch with seams
  4. Stitch each piece of your tablecloth together in the desired pattern.curtains press seams
  5. Press open the seams.curtains pin front and back together
  6. Pin the inside and backing together, right sides out. You are now making your actual curtain panel. Because tablecloths are thin, you have to make your curtain double thick. I usually use a solid color as the backing but you could use a pattern instead if preferred.
  7. Stitch around the entire piece. I use 1/4-inch seams. These will be visible. (I do not like making finishing hems so that is why tablecloths are ideal to use as curtains. Each edge is already finished.)curtains measure length
  8. Measure how tall you would like your curtains and add 4 inches. In this case, I wanted 80-inch curtains for a large window. I measured a length of 84 inches on the tablecloth.curtains fold at length
  9. Fold the tablecloth at that line on the top edge and cut along the fold. curtains fold at 4 inches
  10. Measure 4 inches from the cut edge and fold over again. You are now making a curtain rod loop. You’re also putting a finished edge on the top of your curtain where you cut the tablecloth to the appropriate length.
  11. Stitch the loop leaving the ends open.
  12. Hang on your window and enjoy. My intention was to use curtain hooks and an existing rod but the hooks were too small. For now the curtain is nailed to the wall but it is still much better than the deer and wolf. In a pinch, I’ve also used thumb tacks until we could afford curtain rods for a window.

 

 

Today’s finished curtains:

 

This is what today's curtains look like. The tablecloths were barely wide enough. If I had more material I would like to add another panel.

This is what today’s curtains look like. The tablecloths were barely wide enough. If I had more material I would like to add another panel.

 

Other ideas:

Checkerboard curtains made with cloth napkins.

Checkerboard curtains made with cloth napkins.

 

 

 

These are some plain curtains I made last year. I used a yellow tablecloth for the inside and a white one as the backing. Notice the push pins? Yep, I don't have a curtain rod there either but at least I now have curtains.

These are some plain curtains I made last year. I used a yellow tablecloth for the inside and a white one as the backing. Notice the push pins? Yep, I don’t have a curtain rod there either but at least I now have curtains.

~Crystal

 

Shared on:

So Much at Home, Wake up Wednesday, Home Matters Linky Party

 

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