Oct 22, 2014

Make Your Home a Haven From the World - Day 16

(Norman Rockwell - Thanksgiving Dinner)

Family traditions definitely make a home feel like heaven.  You know, all those fun things you get to do with your family, the things you look forward to...  For example, every Friday night we do pizza and movie night.  The tradition started for us over six years ago.  My husband was away from home doing some training for his job for about five months, but he got to come home every weekend.  So to celebrate having him home, we started having pizza every Friday night.  Then we'd eat treats and watch a movie.  To this day, we still do this and it's the perfect fun start to the weekend.  

We also have holiday traditions.  Like... we buy a REAL Christmas tree every year and we hunt for it together as a family, the Friday or Saturday after Thanksgiving.  We watch "White Christmas"  every year while we decorate the tree.  For Thanksgiving, it's usually just our family, but the tradition is to make a whole weekend worth of Thanksgiving food so that we can have left overs for days!  This way we don't have to cook for the next four days and can just enjoy the holiday weekend.  

We created a new tradition a couple of years ago to go camping at the same place every July.  We ride horses, go fishing, roast marshmallows and Star Bursts.  It's tons of fun.  

Traditions don't have to be based around holidays though, just like how I mentioned that we eat pizza for dinner every Friday night, we also do chores around the house every Saturday morning.  We read scriptures as a family every morning before we leave the house.  We go around the table at dinner time and share two things that we're grateful for (Usually.  Sometimes we forget.)  Traditions are just things you do all the time together.  Routines.

I think traditions bond family members together.  They create lasting memories and a feeling of family unity.  That bonding, that family unity, those memories, they make those walls that surround you and your family, feel like heaven on earth!

*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World.  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.

Make Your Home a Haven From the World - Day 15

(source)

I love the powerful influence for good that music can have in the home.  

On school days, as we're all hustling and bustling around the house to get to school/work on time, I like to play a classical music/Mormon Tabernacle Choir kind of blend on Pandora.  It calms a bit of the bustling going on, and my momma/wife heart hopes that it will send my loved ones out into the world filled with the spirit and ready to conquer all the adversary throws at them each day.  

On Saturday mornings, as we're crossing off each and every chore that must get done, we play some Taylor Swift or Selena Gomez stations on Pandora to keep us in an upbeat cleaning mood.  It makes you want to dance with a broom or scrub a little faster.

As I tidy up the house during the week, I like to play some Ella Fitzgerald or Bing Crosby on Pandora.  It's fun, classy, calming...  it makes me feel like I've stepped back in time.  It's my happy housewife music.  :)

Good music can do so much to bring us together as a family, help motivate us for good, and bring the spirit of the Lord into our hearts.  Man, I'm grateful for the role that music plays in my home. 


*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World.  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.

Oct 14, 2014

Make Your Home a Haven From the World - Day 14


I love this painting by Norman Rockwell.  What a welcoming crew that soldier has there!  I think it's important to be intentional about our greetings in our comings and goings with our family. 

Hug them and tell them you love them when they leave.  Wish them luck with whatever they have going on in their day! When family members come home, be careful not to carry on with the ever growing to-do lists.   (I'm not always perfect in this area.)  Stop what you're doing, acknowledge that your loved one is home.  Tell them you missed them.  Kiss their cheeks.  Ask them about their day.  Heck, put on a little lip stick or brush your hair a little before your husband gets home from work.  Bottom line, make your loved ones feel important, whether they're coming or going.  What a happy place they'll hate to leave, but love to return to at the end of every day!

*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World .  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.

Make Your Home a Haven From the World - Day 13


I know it's not possible for everyone to be a stay at home mom for various reasons.  But I think it's so important to be at the crossroads for our children and our families as much as we possibly can.  Our kiddos have so much to say during the comings and goings throughout the day.  You never know when a teaching moment will pop up or some advice will need to be given.  Whether we're there to listen to the most recent drama happening at school or to just the mundane everyday little moments, we're there!  They can rely on us!  We can help, we can watch over, and we can direct the lives of our children in a positive direction in this crazy world we live in!  What a heavenly thing to come home to people who love and care about us.


*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World .  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.

Make Home a Haven From the World - Day 12



A home can be heaven on earth when every one works together to share the load of keeping a house looking nice and feeling clean.  There's cooking and cleaning to do, plenty of house projects to finish, lawns to mow and if you live at our house, chickens to take care of too.  If everyone pitches in, it doesn't become too much of a burden for just one person.  It also teaches useful skills and the value of hard work. 

During the week, our kiddos each have a kitchen job that they rotate through on a weekly basis.  One kiddo will wash the dishes, one sweeps the floor, and the other wipes and clears the dining room table.  (They loooove it when their week of dishes is over, haha!)  During the school year, they typically only do these kitchen jobs after dinner.  On weekends and throughout the summer, they get the joy of doing them after every meal.  :)  Each of our children also has a list of five chores that they do every Saturday.  (We pay them for these jobs so that they get practice paying their tithing and saving for the future.)  By Saturday afternoon, our house feels spick and span. 

A lot of the yard work gets done as a whole family.  Although it's scattered with a few complaints, I love working on outside (or inside) projects together with everyone.  While it's important to play together with family, I think a lot of love and bonding can be shared working together and teaching children new skills too.

*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World .  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.

Oct 13, 2014

Make Your Home a Haven From the World - Day 11


Families that play together stay together, especially when their play is uplifting and wholesome. Family vacations, holidays, birthday celebrations, and other activities build strong bonds and feelings of self-worth. The phrase “Remember when we…” is sure to bring love and laughter in the years to come.

Spending quality time with our family is so important in creating a loving home environment.  Doing wholesome activities together strengthens family bonds and creates lasting memories.  Every Friday night we do "family pizza and movie night", we go camping every summer, we carve pumpkins in the fall, we make and eat large amounts of food together the entire Thanksgiving weekend, we build fires and roast marshmallows in our fireplace in the winter, and we hunt for the perfect Christmas tree to chop down during the last weekend in November.  All of these activities and traditions bond us together and make home such a special place to be with our family.

*This is a 31 days series:  Make Your Home a Haven From the World .  I will be writing on this topic every day for the month of October.  Click on the link on the sidebar to read the previous day(s) posts.
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