Friday, February 15, 2013

Creating Joy

One of my resolutions for 2013 is to be more intentional about creating joy in the lives of my family.  Schedules, chore lists and hard work all seem to come naturally to me, but slowing down to enjoy life is a struggle.  I typically spend most of the morning hovering over my Homeschool Log to make sure the daily goals are accomplished. Yesterday was different - I kept the pages closed in an effort to teach my children that it's ok to have fun sometimes.  We spent the first part of the morning putting the finishing touches on our Valentine's.  Pinterest has such a wealth of ideas for handmade Valentine Cards.  I found three simple designs for the boys to create during the week and they were quite proud of their heart shaped accomplishments. 
 Then we headed down the road to play in the snow.  That sounded simple right?  Well...we haven't had snow here in a while, so it took quite a bit of effort to locate the snowsuits, matching gloves and get them all on.  It seems my boys have grown quite a bit from last year.  The snow pants were on the short side, but we'll make due for now.  They had such a great time with Esther and Isaac - building a snowman, making snow angels and climbing the glimmering trees. 

My husband and I have reached this place in our marriage where we are just soooo realistic with each other.  So Valentine's Day wasn't all about the two of us, but about the five of us.  We do look forward to attending a couple's banquet this evening and I really anticipate the day that we can have more alone time.  But right now in this season of life we focus on their needs.  They need to feel love, security and approval from us - where would they get it otherwise?

In elementary school I recall making special Valentine Mailboxes to tape to the side of our desks.  They were mere brown paper bags with Dollar Store Doilies, but I just loved having my own little bag overflow with cards from each of my classmates.  In an effort to create the same excitement for my children, yesterday I made heart shaped bags from felt to hang in our kitchen.  I just love working with felt.  It's inexpensive, there's never a wrong side and it doesn't fray.  I simply cut out two large hearts for the front and back, two smaller hearts for front contrast and two long strips for handles.  I purchased pinking shears for the project that really gave it a special touch.  

The gifts were simple - Three Hershey Kisses in each bag, some handmade cards and I made Lavender Bath Bombs.  It was my first time to makes bath bombs and to my surprise it was incredibly easy!  I enjoyed a Luxurious Lavender Bath this morning.

Here is the recipe if you want to give it a try:
1 cup baking soda
½ cup citric acid

½ cup Epsom Salts
2 ½ Tablespoons Lavender
       Almond Oil
6 drops of Young Living
      Lavender Essential Oil
½ teaspoon Borax
1 teaspoon dried lavender flowers
Spray Bottle of Witch Hazel

1.  In a large bowl combine the baking soda, citric acid and salt. (Be sure to break up any clumps.) 
2.  In a small bowl combine the oils, Borax and dried flowers. 
3.  Quickly combine the wet and dry ingredients, spraying the mixture 2 - 3 times with the Witch Hazel to make it a little damp.  Making this mixture too wet  may start some fizzing action or make it expand. 
 4.  Put the mixture into molds of your choice (I used an 8 cavity brownie pop silicone mold by Wilton) and allow to dry for 10 minutes.  Then carefully remove your bath bomb and allow to dry for a few days before storing.  (I put mine in organza bags, so they can continue to dry while packaged.)

And last but not least...we feasted for dinner -  Dark Chocolate Fondue, strawberries, bananas, Auntie Anne's® Apple Cinnamon Pretzels were just a few things on the menu.  Jason lingered at the table long after the rest of us were finished.  He doesn't eat large quantities, the boys just loves the process of eating, savoring every bite.  Happy Valentine's Day!    

Pin It


  1. Replies
    1. I've enjoyed your blog too. Just last fall my son Jonathan felt led to pray for your family. He asked all about the Gordley Family but I didn't know what to tell him. Now here you are and we can be praying for you in detail now.