Painted Rocks by the Castle Keeper Girls

We’re wrapping up the year for our Castle Keeper girls. They’ve just finished up their last monthly challenge which was to paint a rock. “A rock”, you say? Oh yes, and cute they are! ~~~~~ These owls and ladybugs were even named! “May I introduce you to Jethro, Francis, Kyle and Oliver?” Does that inspire you to make your own? But, wait! Before you run off to paint yours, I have a few more I would like to share. This lovely butterfly is from the hand of an artist in Brazil. I wonder what type butterfly it is? The following rocks were collected while on special outings. One carried all the way from the bottom of the Grand Canyon… …and this one while on a…

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Over fifteen years ago we went to our first 4-H club meeting and Seth joined the swine group for his first market project. And now my baby girl Audrey has reached the age required by 4-H to show and sale an animal. She’s been eagerly anticipating this year because she would now be old enough to raise a pig herself.   Last year, nabbing every chance she could, Audrey walked Serenity’s pig and learned how to train it to go in the direction she wanted.   But now it’s her turn to have her very own pig. And it’s even better when you and your brother are doing the same project because then you get to do everything together. Working alongside each other they worked…

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Our Havasupai Hike – Day 3

After walking in to Havasupai and enjoying the beautiful sights it had to offer, it was time to leave. I had wanted to make our departure at the bright and early hour of 5 am to beat the heat but I was outvoted. The only ones who were with me in leaving early was my 9 year old Audrey and another 13 year old boy, so I opted to wait for everyone. And it turned out fine since the weather was not too hot at all. After Scripture and prayer, we took a last group shot… and started getting ready for our hike out. and we were off, leaving as we were ready – in a staggered fashion. Nothing planned, just how it worked out….

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Our Havasupai Hike – Day 2

After getting a good nights rest, we were ready to see the beautiful falls that Havasupai is famous for. (And if you didn’t get to read about Day 1 of our hike down into this part of the Grand Canyon, you can here.) This is a picture heavy post – almost 40 pictures but I took over 600 photos so trimming it down is hard.   We started off the morning with breakfast in the courtyard, again eating whatever each individual decided to pack along with them. My brother-in-law who knows no stranger invited one of the Natives to come have breakfast with us. Jasper was his name and he shared with us a few stories from the Supai history that had happened right there…

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Our Havasupai Hike – Day 1

Every step, every mile we hiked was worth it. What amazing and stunning views were beheld. Words and pictures cannot capture the pure beauty of it all. And what a wonderful time to be with family and friends. It was mostly families that went which I appreciate. I love seeing families do things together and this was an experience that I was thrilled we could do with our children. We were shocked at the amount of cars at the top. We were not expecting so many. There are a limited number of hikers allowed into the canyon at any one time and I had been under the impression that it wasn’t very many but what about all these cars? We found out later that most…

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The Adventure is Almost Upon Us

You all know about my upcoming adventure to hike a part of the Grand Canyon called Havasupai. Well folks, it’s very close. Only 5 days away! I’ve watched the days go from triple digits down to single. I am so excited to be doing this and we have 34 others that have signed up to go with us so there will be a lot of moral support for any of us who might lag behind. That wouldn’t be me of course! Not at all. A few months ago I did a little spoof on Ernest Shackleton’s advertisement he posted in the newspaper for his expedition to the Antarctic in 1914 and sent it to some who were trying to make up their minds about Havasupai….

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A Desert Girl and a Sea Captain Fall in Love

I survived. One day of kitchen prep work and one day of intense kitchen craziness but it was all mostly all good. This past weekend I catered a wedding reception for a friend of the family. My 5th wedding so far. Am I crazy for doing this? I really do think it’s fun but making sure the food is ready when needed can be a challenge. Especially if the facilities are not up to par. Thankfully, this kitchen was nice and big with 2 refrigerators and 2 ovens. The ovens were only residential grade so that’s not so nice but it IS two ovens, so I have to be thankful for that. The bride, Cherith, married a ship captain from New Zeland and after the…

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Castle Keeper Girls Make Their Own Gift Wrap

Most of the time I haven’t any problem thinking of new challenges for the Castle Keeper girls. It’s actually kind of fun looking for ideas for the girls. This past month they did gift wrapping and bow toppers. They were to wrap a book or some other item (it did not have to be a real gift) and make their own wrapping paper as well as a bow topper.  The girls 13 and up had to do 4 different packages and 12 and under only had to do one. Here’s a sampling of their work.   Audrey (age 9) took a potato and dipped it in red paint to make her watermelon print. It’s an idea she saw on Pinterest.   The use of a…

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A Picnic Under the Cottonwoods

It was a delightful weekend. Special youth services at our church were held and between the meetings and the fellowship, it couldn’t have been better. All except for the fact that there wasn’t much shut-eye the last few days! We worked so hard cleaning the house. All the kids’ help was enlisted and the sheets on all 7 beds were washed, beds remade, bathrooms cleaned and I don’t need to tell you what else because you all do it, too.  But don’t you wonder if it is really necessary because within the first 20 minutes of everyone arriving things deteriorate rapidly?:) But it’s really hard to do it any other way! We had 30+ kids staying at our house, so we had snacks for everyone…

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Tell Me One More Story, Please

Thank you to those who took my short survey. It was very enlightening and interesting to see the results! Who doesn’t love a good story? At our last Castle Keepers meeting, one of our girls’ mother gave us pointers on how to tell a good story. It’s an interest of hers and she has several books on that topic alone. Who knew there were books just on that subject? Our teacher keeping our attention upon her story by using hands and plenty of voice inflections. As you can see the kids were quite engrossed. Each girl was to bring some type of story… even a personal family story worked. We learned that a story is similar to keeping a balloon in the air. You gently…

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Please Take This Short Poll

photo from My Flower Journal   I have a question for you, dear readers. What kinds of posts do you like reading when you come to Treasuring the Moments? You can check as many boxes as you like or as few in the poll below. You don’t have to log-in to answer and you will remain anonymous but I’d really like to know what kinds of things interest you.   Thanks for taking the time to do this for me.  

Making Envelope Pillow Covers – Simple Project

Because it’s pretty big news in our family… We’re going to be grandparents again! Little Shalom will be a “big” sister, Lord willing, in November. We’re delighted that our kids love children and count them as precious gifts and very happy for the new addition coming to our family. And more exciting news for my son and his family. They will be building themselves a small house and if all goes well moving in before their new arrival! That will be so very nice for them! I am happy to say I was able to get to those envelope pillows and had success making two! They were so easy! The tutorial was very simple to follow and you are even given directions on how to…

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Master Bedroom Progress

I’m quite excited because after a few years I’m actually starting to make some progress in the master bedroom. I have curtains hung and I purchased a few pillows for my bed as well as a throw. Progress, people! It feels good! My daughter, Serenity ordered a few pillow forms through the mail a long time ago but decided not to use them. Instead of paying the return postage we kept them and instead of taking up closet space, I think I’ll actually use them on my bed! That’s what they’re for after all. So yesterday, I picked me up some fabric and my plans are to get them made today. I found a really great tutorial online for making an envelope pillow slip cover…

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Investments in Our Children

Sometimes we forget just how important and valuable our role as a mother is. We get caught up in the dailiness of things and lose sight of how we are impacting lives, shaping character and helping our children grow into young men and women of fine character. Planting good seed that will some day reap an abundant harvest.   At the recent homeschool conference in Nashville, Tennessee, Sonya Shafer from Simply Charlotte Mason, shared how we can give our kids 5 gifts. She used the acronym TEACH to make her point. Here is some of what she shared. And for free, just for you, I added some of my own thoughts. T – Teach them the Bible – Teach them the mighty things God has…

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Why you take them to a homeschool conference, of course! Banff Springs Hotel, Chateau Lake Louise, beautiful hotels but I don’t think I’ve ever stayed in one so nice as the Opryland Hotel. It was absolutely amazing. The setting was fun, beautiful, unique and romantic… but be forewarned, it is very expensive. We stayed two nights at the Opryland Inn which is located across the street from the hotel but for one night we got to stay at the hotel. We did spend 3 of our days at the hotel because the homeschool conference was located there.   Every time we would leave the conference to go for lunch, we could count on getting lost. We saw plenty of others that were lost, too. There…

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Our God Has it All Under Control

Was it only a week ago that Russell and I boarded a plane headed for Nashville, Tennessee? Our day started at 2:45am as we had to drive over an hour to reach the Phoenix airport. Early morning flights are not one of my favorite things. I like to get up early but having an actual time-frame that early in the day is not a motivator for me even if I am going somewhere wonderful! Dear sweet Audrey woke up to say one last goodbye to us before we headed out the door. This trip was a little more challenging because Russell was on crutches. He tore his calf muscle about 1 1/2 weeks ago and was unable to put his full weight on his foot….

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At the Opryland Hotel

Here in Tennessee at the Teach Them Diligently homeschool conference. I’ll tell you all about it when I get home. My husband in the atrium eating supper. It’s so beautiful here!  

I’ve always loved miniature things. When I was a little girl I had a dollhouse and it was more fun to see the small pieces of furniture than it was to actually play with. Then there are the American Girl dolls and all their accessories. So, so cute. I love miniature versions of their larger counterparts and that’s probably why I was so drawn to the idea of our Castle Keeper girls putting together a fairy garden for one of their monthly challenges. To put together their fairy garden they would need some type of container, soil, and small plants such as mosses, grass, alyssum or succulents… but they were limited in what could be purchased for accessories. Ninety-five percent of  their accessories had to…

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Why would anyone have chocolate covered espresso beans sitting right next to their computer if they didn’t want to be tempted, I have no idea. And I have succumbed to the temptation. They’re a little weird tasting but addicting and I’ve popped several into my mouth since I gave in.      Sigh. Heed my warning and don’t, seriously(!) don’t place anything chocolate within arm’s reach 15′, 30′, 50′ of you if you really don’t want to eat it. You’ve been warned! But if you do not listen you may want to try and make up for it by getting outside and practicing some Tae-kwon-do moves. Huh, you say? That’s exactly what our Castle Keepers and Castle Defenders did this month. They learned some Tae-kwon-do defense…

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My Pantry Has a Name

It’s been almost 4 months since I asked for suggestions on what to name my new pantry. And after all this time I did decide on a name! Butler’s Pantry In yesteryears, the Butler’s Pantry was a place to store silverware and other kitchen items that were not edible. Although I loved so many of the suggestions that it was actually hard to choose one, I ended up picking Butler’s Pantry because I found it easiest to say when I was directing someone to go and get an item from there. It just seemed to slip out so easily. I finally got around to painting the name on the door the other day. I wish now I had did it different. I would have purchased…

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