Dec 302013

Based on your reading, these are your favorites for 2013. Some of these are all-time classics from the archives!

Favorite Habits of 2013 & Building Habits in the New Year

Plus, we are including those, below, we feel are important to develop in the new year.

Your Favorite Habits of 2013

1. Three Gifts for Christmas  (pin it)

2. The Ultimate Guide to Housekeeping Habits  (pin it)


3. How to Be Your Husband’s Wife and Not His Mommy (pin it)

4. Planning to Be Spontaneous – The Household Notebook (pin it)

5. Flylady- Tools Not Rules (pin it)

6. Love in a Lunch Box (pin it)

7. How to Plan Individual Time with Multiple Ages (pin it)

8. 10 Habits for the Family Table (pin it)

9. How to Get Started Homeschooling – 10 Steps to Success (pin it)

Top 10 Clutter Busting Secrets

10. 10 Clutter Busting Secrets (pin it)

And this guest post from our friend Paige was very close to making the top 10! How to Make a Month of Breakfasts for the Freezer.

What is YOUR favorite?

SGIBuilding and Developing Habits in the New Year

Have you started to think and pray about developing some habits for your home in 2014? Here are a few we’ve selected that we feel are always important to focus on.

First we build our habits; then our habits build us. ~author unknown

The Habit of Kindness – Let me say when you stop and apply just these two little words to your home and life it will really make a difference.

Early to Rise – A simple habit and a way to start the day with little ones – with the Bible! Before all the Moving. Talking. Running. Crying. Playing. Questioning. All. Day. Long.

Water and the Word – Let me encourage you to get your Bible and take a BIG GULP before this day ends. It will quench your thirsty soul!

Time… (How to Make a Schedule) – This is to be a flexible guide that will help us use our time in a way that will bring the most glory to God.

Habit Formation – I think Habit formation should be a very important part of child training. I truly believe that God created us to be creatures of habit because having a good habit just makes things so much easier for us. Once something is a habit, you don’t even have to think about it, you just do “it”.

Let Your Light Shine – Oh, Friends! Let us remember why we are here. We are called to be a light in the darkness. We are called to point people to the Light, not the darkness. Yes, things are bad and getting worse in our nation and around the world. But God is GOOD! Let people see and hear about the wonders of God rather than the mistakes of men.

Help for Building Habits at Habits for a Happy Home

10 Helps for Building Habits – a great round up of how tos for baby-stepping towards those habits!

Perspective Can Change Everything – Let us be in the habit of keeping a God sized perspective.

Our Pinterest board full of encouragement for Developing Habits!

Thank you for reading in 2013 and we pray your 2014 will be blessed! Please keep in touch…

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Banana Cranberry Salad Recipe

 Posted by on December 10, 2013  1 Response »
Dec 102013

December seems to be the month of get-togethers.  Whether it is a large crowd or a small gathering, I always seem to be busy making food for friends and family.  This particular dish is one of my favorites to make (and eat) for Christmas gatherings.  It is quick and easy and you can make it ahead of time!  It comes from a cookbook that my mom made for me several years ago; it is filled with recipes that have been passed down in my family.

 Banana Cranberry Salad

This recipe comes from my great-grandmother and has been our alternative to plain ‘ole cranberry sauce for many years.  Continue reading »

Simple Christmas

 Posted by on December 3, 2013  3 Responses »
Dec 032013

Simplicity.  Simple things, simple joys, simple beauty.  It’s what I crave right now.  I guess it’s understandable, since we sold/donated/gave away almost everything we owned when we moved back in September.  I am finding that I have a desire to keep life that way. . .simple.

When you look closely enough, what beauty there is in the simple things of life!  The steam curling upward from a cup of hot tea, the fire dancing in the fireplace, the look of wonder in my sons’ eyes when they see the lit up Christmas tree for the first time. . .these things are simple.  They do not cost a lot of money.  They do not take extravagant amounts of time to accomplish (unless you’re a perfectionist when it comes to decorating your tree).  {smile}  What joy we can find in simple things!

We are keeping Christmas simple this year.  Why stress about gifts, and having everything just right, when the whole purpose of the season is to worship the One Who came as a baby, so that He could rescue us and show us His light?

Why not skip the craziness at the mall and opt instead for a giving hand-made gifts, or a few gifts that are meaningful?  How about using some of your gift giving budget to give to others that have way less than what we usually find just under our Christmas tree on Christmas morning?  Our family participated in Operation Christmas Child, again this year.  What a wonderful experience it was to show our kids how much fun it can be to give something to others. . .rather than just focusing on what we are getting!

Will you join me?  Let’s keep the Christmas craziness away, enjoy the simple things, and keep our families focused on our precious Savior. . .the Reason for the season.

A Worry-free Life

 Posted by on November 12, 2013  No Responses »
Nov 122013

ID-100184055The Bible tells us that the Lord provides for the flowers of the fields and the birds of the air without a moment of worry from them and that we can feel confident He will provide for us, as well.

But how often do we worry still? How often do we fret about tomorrow and feel like there’s no answer to our problems? With the economic crisis our country is in and the trickledown effect it has on us and with the healthcare issues many of us are facing, the stripping away of many of our freedoms, it’s hard not to worry about tomorrow. It’s easy to be scared that we’re facing trials and persecution of epic propositions. Our season of thankfulness and celebration quickly becomes depressing if we focus on all the negative things in this world.

There is one person in my life that has always shown me that worry gets me nowhere. My father-in-law is a perfect example to me of the flowers of the fields and the birds of the air. I’ve been in the family twenty-five years (twenty-seven years if you count the dating years) and one thing I have witnessed with my father-in-law is he seems to be confident that God will provide for our family without fail. This is not to say that he hasn’t had trouble in life. He has had health problems and he’s suffered from the deaths of family members. But he is an example of a person who has built his house upon the rock.

I’m thankful for the example that my father-in-law has set for me and my husband, his sister, our children, and for my mother-in-law. The example that no matter what comes our way–whether it’s good or bad–when we trust that God knows what’s best for us and will provide exactly what we need to get through that situation, He will do it.

When trials come, my father-in-law is confident that God will take care of them. And the funny thing is: God does take care of them. And that builds more confidence in God.

NanaAndPapa 061The more confidence in God we have the more God shows off what He really can do. And when He does that, more people see Him working in our lives for the good. Even in trials.

Our lack of worry—our obvious confidence in God—is an example that other people see. The peacefulness on our faces even in the midst of trials. The absence of worry lines across our foreheads. When people can sit down with us and ask us how we’re so peaceful during such a traumatic or stressful time and we share with them that it’s only by the grace of God that we can get through each day, God has proven His existence in our lives.

The good days are always easy to get through. The bad days are not. But when we build our house upon the rock and we put our faith and trust in the Lord and when we choose to be obedient to him, we’ll have a joy about us that others will see from very far away. We’ll have something that is contagious. Something that other people want to catch.

Do you have someone in your life that is an example-setter? Someone who encourages you to keep your faith and trust in the Lord? I encourage you today to look for the person (or people) in your life who can inspire you to keep your hope, your faith, and your trust in the Lord. During this season of thankfulness, let those people know exactly what they’ve done for you! Let others see that they can live worry-free!

Photo of in-laws:

~ by Author Sherri Wilson Johnson

‘Tis the Season to Be…

 Posted by on December 13, 2012  No Responses »
Dec 132012

…Jolly…Ready for fun…Busy…Crazy…Worn out…

Or ’tis it the season to be Blessed…Thankful…Loved…Cherished…?

With the holidays upon us, many of us face crazy days of shopping, maybe a little traveling to see family members, and more than likely church events, musicals and plays to fill our evenings. The month of December can be over and done with before you even have time to get your tree decorated and the wrapped gifts placed under it.

Many families struggle at this time of year because they don’t have the resources to provide their loved ones with presents under the tree or a buffet of seasonal foods. They may not be able to travel to visit family members far away or may be estranged from certain family members. This can be a tough time of year for those who have lost loved ones in recent days or years, as my family has.

For many years, the Holidays have been my most dreaded time of the year for a variety of reasons. But I have recently begun to feel change occurring in me. I’m actually looking forward to the year end happenings.

When we pause and remember the reason for the holidays, we open our hearts and minds to receive the best gift of all. Jesus came so that we would have life and have it abundantly. He is more precious than silver and gold so He is more of a gift than anything that is wrapped under the tree. The bread and wine/juice we partake of in communion is more delicious than any Holiday ham or turkey and more satisfying than Grandma’s apple pie or Aunt Mary’s chocolate cake and more thirst-quenching than the latest trendy hot tea. He is closer than a brother and time spent with Him makes even the best family gathering seem like a day spent in jail.

When you find yourself dreading the next day in this season because you’ve got too much to do to get ready for your next holiday event, remember the babe that was born in Bethlehem so long ago and how He gave His all to others while here on earth.

But don’t forget…even He needed a break every now and then. Even He slipped away from the crowd and had to say “No” to the demands of the people. He took time to rest and to pray. He kept His relationship with His Father first and foremost in His life.

Peace be to you during this holiday season. Keep things simple and remember that you don’t have to do it all and it doesn’t all have to be done.

Sherri Wilson Johnson is an Inspirational Romance novelist, a speaker, social media junkie, and a former homeschooling mom who loves to share God with others, while sharing her life experiences with them. She is a member of the ACFW and a graduate from the Christian Writers Guild writing course. She lives in Georgia with her husband and two children. She loves to dream of romantic places and romance in general–good, clean romance, that is. She is passionate about purity and sexual integrity. Sherri is the author of To Dance Once More (OakTara) and Song of the Meadowlark (OakTara). She is polishing her novels To Laugh Once More and After the Raging Storm.

Candles and Nativity photos: