Thursday, December 5, 2013

Christmas 2013

The Year of Our Lord 2013

Dear loved ones,
 I write this greeting as we are in the air after a first attempt at landing in Newark, NJ. The winds caused the pilot to abandon his first attempt at landing and we are now trying again. I was just thinking, as I felt the wheels of the plane dragging the air, that we would definitely make our connection easily. We were truly about to land! It reminds me of the uncertainty of life in general. If you are in a place in life where you are about to land in a way that is uncertain, or you are not prepared properly, I urge you to seek The Lord! For you will find Him in doing so.

Many things happened this year that were not our usual flight plan. It turned out to be a year of exotic travels. First, Andrew was able to join David for his usual trip to L.A. for the Shepherds conference. Then in May, David and Rebekah (15)were able to travel to Ethiopia with several others in our church. They spent two weeks there ministering to Ethiopian pastors. David preached and taught once, sometimes twice a day. One small thing that struck me was how, years ago, Rebekah desired to learn to play the flute. She was able to use her talent to bless the Ethiopians along with another gal from our church who also plays the flute. So easy to pack and carry around on bumpy jeep rides. So unlike a harp, for instance. God has such special plans for each of us. 

Right before that trip, Margaret (17)came down with shingles. It was on one side of her face, and many of you know that it is very painful. We were out of town when she was diagnosed and it was a real blessing how auntie Sarah and grandparents all pulled together to help her recover. Margaret showed some "true grit" by playing, as scheduled, in a piano competition and winning first place. Woe to any of her piano students who try an excuse to get out of a performance.

As summer approached, Andrew (19)was preparing for a trip to Indonesia to spend some time learning another culture and assisting my brother and his family in their mission work. As the plans were forming in our hearts and minds months earlier, we thought he would travel there with my sister. So comforting to my mommy heart that didn't want him to travel alone. Even while taking that solace, there was a sense in my spirit that, no, he would travel alone. As the weeks drew near for his departure, there was, sure enough, a change of itinerary. Rather than accompanying my sister there and staying for four months and then returning with my parents who were planning on visiting at Christmas time, he would travel there alone. His first flight anywhere alone and it had to be across the world? Was anyone bothered besides me? No. It was good for me to let go. It was hard, not that I doubted his ability or God's ability to care for him, but more that I knew that this was marking a clear difference in my role in Andrew's life. Something that I always new would come and even wanted to come, but it is hard to start switching my mind, words, and actions to having adult children. It is exciting, too.
He had his first day of seminary while flying home from Indonesia. That is a thrill for us for sure! 

Then it was time for our regular homeschool to start. After years of struggling and trying not to get too concerned, Tabitha (10)and Marta (8) have finally" Taken Off" in their reading. As I had hoped, this crucial step has also unlocked their minds in many ways. They are getting along better and tackling their chores more cheerfully. We have had a very delightful school year so far. God has truly blessed! I tried to not get stressed over their troubles the last few years, but I did get stressed. I tried not to worry about what the "delayed take off"  was about, but I did worry. I tried not to get angry and impatient, but I did. And God did it. He looked down on my feeble attempts at training them when it didn't seem to be getting through, and He blessed anyway. Though they are not at "autopilot" yet, we have reached a nice little cruising speed. David and I are very thankful for the privilege to home educate. God is so good and we view it as a miracle and give Him all he glory as each day passes.

During this time, my sister got married. David and I were able to have a little couples' getaway in order to attend the wedding. It was in the San Juan's and we had never been there before. You know you are from a small town when your dentist officiates your sisters wedding! He also happens to be her boss. 

In November, we had the privilege of traveling out to Tennessee again for the Bible Bee Nationals. Sarah (18)and Margaret both qualified. We had a wonderful time and met quite a few very dear people, including some of the Duggars. Though neither girl competed past the first day, David and I had a very special time with our two older girls site seeing and just hanging out. Sarah hopes to be able to volunteer next year as she is too old to compete. 

Max and David  are quickly changing into young men. We celebrated Maxwell's 13th Birthday in our usual way. It is a transitional occasion where he invited guys of all ages and they share many important insights about being a man and then it ended with a football game in our field. David is eleven and straining to be older! I just can't seem to convince him to just enjoy what is left of his childhood! Both of them are a special part of our family.

William is six and charging ahead in reading and math. He loves math. His gears are always turning, just don't ask him trivial things like remembering names of people or what day of the week it is. When asked why he wanted to be a Christian he replied,
 " Because I'm a sinful man!" 
 And Sam. The baby is four. He is such a fun guy to have around. So easy going. Recently a child, who will remain nameless, cut off some of his lovely, red, curly locks. The child purposely trimmed as closely to Sam's scalp as possible. I asked Sam why he didn't ask that child to stop. Sam answered, " I did ask for him to stop. I said, ' Please, stop.' and he just kept cutting."

 Back to our present plane ride: we did land smoothly on the second try and switched planes for our return to Sea-Tac but after our plane pulled out of the terminal, it went back again because the water indicator is saying that there is not sufficient supply. I can't help but think of the Living Water. If you don't know what I'm talking about, please, get a Bible and read the book of John. Jesus is the Living Water. Once you have it, you never need thirst again. It is a free gift. At Christmas time we celebrate Christ's birth. There is nothing more exciting than that and it is what we care about at Christmas time and anytime. 

I do not know what next year holds. Will it center around this earthly home? Or, oh blessed thought, will we travel to the heavens? I do know this, " I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that He is able to keep that which I've committed unto him against that day!" 
Wherever you find yourself landing this next year, this is the gate number:
“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few." 

Merry Christmas! Blessings, Carol Eddy for all: David, Andrew, Sarah, Margaret, Rebekah, Maxwell, David Clayton, Tabitha, Marta, William, and Samuel

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Essential Oils- why they work

Oils: let's get technical
Essential Oils are NOT "snake oils."
There are real reasons as to why they work.
Here are the components of the oils that form the vast majority of their make- up. ( more than 99%)
Mono terpenoids hydrocarbons : citrus peels and needle trees have high proportions of this. Monoterpene hydrocarbons have pronounced antiviral effects and have a drying effect on the skin.  Needles oils are known for their decongestant effects in the respiratory tract.
Monoterpene Alcohols: these have strong antimicrobial effects. The oils in which these alcohols are dominate can be used liberally and have a great value for staying healthy and preventing disease.
Phenol: thymol and carvacrol are forceful antibacterial. 
Ester: monoterpenoid ester compounds are relaxing to the central nervousness system. Eaters relax, balance, loosen tension, and are spasmolytic. Clary Sage, lavender, Ylang  Ylang.
Ketones:pronounced mucolytic effects, especially in the respiratory and uro-genital tracts and on the skin.they promote skin regeneration, but not to be used in pregnancy.
Aldehydes: strong anti- viral effects, but are also sedative and anti- inflammative.
Cineole: anti- viral and expectorant properties.
Sequiterpene hydrocarbons: powerful anti inflammative agents.
Sequiterpene alcohols and sequiterpene keytones: 
Interactions between receptors sites and sequiterpenoids.
Sequiterpene lactones: the most powerful mucolytics within medical aromatherapy.
Phenylpropaniods: methyl chavicol- a strong affinity to those system that we don't have to think about- breathing, digesting etc.
Eugenol and cinnamic aldehyde: very powerful agents that are highly antiseptic and rebalance digestive flora.

Basically, all of the properties are arranged and rearranged in varying amounts in the different plant oils like looking through a kaleidoscope. The ones with more ester are going to be the ones that promote relaxation. Oils high in monoterpene hydrocarbons are going to be great go to oils for killing viruses. These are your citrus peel oils.
Oils with a similar synergy smell alike and have similar pharmacological effects.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Max with his bass fiddle.

Shiver Me Shingles!

The evening of April 23, Margaret was having a strange tingling sensation in her chin. During the night it crept up her face and into her ear. By the next morning she was in a lot of pain on the rt. side of her face and extremely sensitive to sound. We thought, migraine. By Friday morning, I didn't know what it was- just very painful, and she encouraged us to go the homeschool conference. She was so sensitive to noise that she needed us to go. Rebekah stayed with her and auntie Sarah checked in on her. 
While at the conference that day, I was explaining it to an acquaintance who mentioned Shingles as a possibility- if only there was blistering. Well, I texted Auntie and asked if there were blisters and she said ," no" , but went back in to double check. Sure enough, the blisters were beginning to form. Sarah took her to urgent care and then to Walmart for prescriptions and protein shakes. Margaret had had very little to eat in the last 3 days. She had blisters in her mouth, ear and so on. Anyway, we got home as soon as we could. The doctor had said something about being good that it wasn't in her eye as that would be very serious indeed. 
Next morning, more blisters and a piano competition. She again urged us to go to the conference and grandma and grandpa Eddy hung out with her for the day. I suggested that she should skip the competition and hoped she would. At 5:30 pm, she texted saying that her eye felt tingly and so I called the 24 hour nurse. We did a conference call with her, Greta and myself, and decided urgent care was the place to go again. Since we were an hour and a half away, I tried to keep my emotions in check rather than worry about her becoming blind. However, I did picture her spending the rest of her life with a pirates patch over her right eye and saying, "aye aye, Captian." whenever I asked her to do something.
 The doctor there said that her eye was fine and that it would be obvious if it was affected. We were, meanwhile, trying to get back to PO to be there. By the way, she got first place in the piano competition. Crazy girl. She couldn't open her mouth, but last night she said that if she could have, she would have given Winston Churchills speech, " This is my finest hour..." when she went up to collect her prize.
Margaret has more determination than most, I'll just say. 
On our way home from the conference that night, thinking that Margaret could loose vision in her eye was a very hard thing, but I knew it was in Gods hands and a lot of people were praying for her. It took about a month for her to get back to normal and she lost a month of schoolwork. It seems like she is back to normal now and I have learned about some natural ways to manage the recovery of shingles. Though nothing really worked for her natural or conventionally, I've read about some Essential Oils that have helped many people.  At present, we are having her take cayenne pepper in a capsule every day for a month in hopes that it will actually kill the virus. Otherwise, it's just a matter of time before the shingles resurfaces. If you have ever had shingles, it never goes away. The prescriptions medications can only reduce pain and possibly speed recovery. The virus does not die. At least try taking the cayenne pepper. It's certainly worth a shot. 

Monday, May 6, 2013

Finish Well

Mark 14:26-28“ If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his father and mother, wife and children, brothers and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be My disciple. And whoever does not bear his cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple. For which of you, intending to build a tower, does not sit down first and count the cost, whether he has enough to finish it —

To be a Christian, sell out for Him completely, no looking back. Plan on finishing well.

Finish every hour well: am I keeping short accounts?

Finish every day well: have I kept the faith today? Did my day show my faith in God? Was I pursuing righteousness throughout?

Finish every week well: do I come to the house of God readying to fellowship with other believers? Or am I self- consumed? Can I input into the lives of other believers?

Finish every month well: did we we get our tithe check in on time? Did I stay in the Word? What areas can I see growth in my walk?

Finish every year well: was I consistent in my beliefs? Did I make new friends, even new disciples for God? Can those around me count on me to be a beacon of hope pointing to God? Is my life showing: SEE what God did! SEE Him at work!

Finish every decade well: is there a definite difference in my life from where I was at 10 years ago? Am I saying," Look at what God has done! See what His is doing now! Guess at what he is going to do!"

Finish well: Dear God, I love you, no matter what. I promise to finish well. And it is ALL YOU when it happens. Amen

Finish well: Will You?

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Turning Around

Occasionally a blind spot is revealed. Just because someone has a blind spot, doesn't  mean they have to stay blind. We try to constantly check in with our Lord and Savior and ask Him for guidance in areas. Recently,I realized that I was in a constant state of frustration, and finally called the family together. First of all, frustration is just another word for anger and anger is sin. I don't want to live in sin, so something had to be done.

Why was I frustrated? In talking with the family, I realized that I had gotten soft. Being tender hearted is good, but children can smell weakness a mile away, and I was in a trap of making decisions based on what might be the least upsetting or disappointing to someone. This NEVER works! If I say yes to a movie, and let a child pick the movie, then another is unhappy about the choice. Then the next time, they are more likely to be upset with the movie choice that I decide on in an effort to not have one child pitted against another. It's a vicious cycle that leads to children ultimately believing that whatever I say is actually only a suggestion and next thing I know I can't ask someone to bring in the garbage and have it actually happen. It has reached a point where the child CAN'T even hear me! It is so unfair to the children. I have done this thing. I have pandered to their flesh and my own, and caused uncertainty and confusion.

How did it start? It began with me not speaking clearly and not following through with my unclear directions, which leads to children making decisions, which leads to me avoiding upsets by trying to go  with the child's take on the situation which leads to children not able to even hear me when I am speaking clearly. Eventually, the frustration leads to difficulty sleeping which leads to memory loss and more confusion. I don't even know what I said or wanted!
It's time to TURN around. Of course, it's way past time to turn around, but turning around is still an option. It's just a harder, longer turn around. We as Christians can turn around! Isn't that a blessing? Our Heavenly Father gives so much grace! I was headed down a road of sinful, constant grumpiness and anger. And hopelessness. We would loose our family. I would pull it down with my own hands. But God, who is full of mercy is so good to give me a new vision.
Here is what I should be in the habit of doing:
Never allow a child to ask for a movie, or a certain cup, or a certain seat at the table. ( Whatever) Guide them to their place. "Here, Johnny, this is your seat. " Stick to the decision with a smile and expect a cheerful smile back- every time!
Always show them that I am wanting to bless them with a fun activity. It is an activity of my choice because God has made me their mommy. A fun activity can be an option. There are always chores that a child could do instead. If there is a fuss about  a child not wanting to color, for instance, I can ask them to wipe down the sink instead. Then, the child will have to wipe down the sink and then MAY come and cheerfully color after that.

Oh, this is just an example of many scenarios. Children will test their boundaries, but it doesn't mean that they shouldn't have them or don't want them. They will be happier the more solid you are. I know this. I've been there and I'm going back!

Sunday, March 17, 2013


Spring is in the air
(Also known as: Tut Tut, it looks like rain)
It really does look as though winter is over. The crocuses are up and daffodils are about to bloom. I love this time of year. The really hard core days of home schooling are winding down. The learning hasn't stopped! It just changes to more outdoor possibilities. The noise, in other words, gets sent outside, and the noise makers love it. 
Our older children have decided to start jogging in the early morning and it seems to have really sparked more energy in general. Of course, all the younger kids wanted cool jogging pants too, and thankfully I got several for only $3 each! I had to convince them, though, that it will work better for the youngers to jog around the house. Otherwise, every car driving by will wonder what we are all running from! 
Easter is fast approaching. This is the time of year when I go through everybody's clothes and make sure that everyone has a complete, nice outfit for church. So, at least on Easter morning, no one is wearing brown shoes with a black suit, or ripped up tights with their pretty Easter dress. 
We are all gearing up for the Easter cantata. Rebekah and I sing soprano, Margaret is alto, Andrew is bass and Max just started and is in the tenor section. Sarah is playing the harp in the orchestra. The younger kids are doing something with the children's choir and, of course, David will be preaching. Thoguh, he will miss one cantata performance because of a wedding rehearsal. 

Monday, March 4, 2013

Confessions of a Closet Conservative

I have been asked many times why I wear skirts "all" the time. There are two main reasons. 1) My husband loves it, and 2) I wanted to communicate femininity to the world. I'm not talking about being sexy. I mean modest femininity. About 12 years ago I decided to wear skirts all the time. My husband never made me do this! I learned that he loved the long flowing ones, and I already knew that he DID want me to look sexy, but ONLY to him. I could do this!

So began my journey. It's been fun and interesting even sad at times. I didn't know I would make enemies. I was just trying to please my Lord. I have learned so much. For instance, now that we are at the farm, it is best that I weed in pants. It truly draws less attention than constantly tucking my skirt around me and checking for bugs on my legs. Then, one day I got a second-degree sunburn across my low back. Because the temperature outside was exactly the same as my body temperature, I hadn't realized that I was exposed. I was pretty uncomfortable at church the next day. I guess it's important to wear SHIRTS that are long enough that they don't pull up. You see, there are several men that work for my dad here, and it is kind to them and their wives, that my daughters and I are covered up as we go about our day. My son had noticed my exposed back and didn't know what to say. He was uncomfortable. My own son had to look away from me.

For some other occasions, I have found pants to be more modest than wearing a skirt: pants that are not tight, but not frumpy, unkempt sweat pants either. For the most part, though, I still try to wear skirts. Other times I wear pants are: when painting (I am just too clumsy in a skirt), when hanging out the laundry if there has been a dry spell (seriously, I'm not into yellow jackets going up my skirt, and that could result in a very immodest situation!), when very cold (I have really struggled with staying warm, and if I'm too cold it makes my bones and muscles hurt which then makes me crabby). I have a pair of pants that are lined and bring so much warmth. I often wear leggings under a skirt and am able to stay warm, but the skirt has to be very full or else the skirt creeps up - again, not a very modest look. So I have also tried wearing a slip with the leggings and skirt, but then, after having a certain number of babies there is discomfort with three bands around your waste! Jumpers would remove one band, but jumpers don't work for nursing and they make some people MAD (I'm not kidding) and label you as legalistic. Actually, one reason I'm putting my thoughts down now is because wearing skirts that are longer makes some people mad.

This makes me sad. I should be able to wear whatever I want, right? No, that's not right. I must first try to please God, then my husband, and then I should consider others.
I have also had people say, "I am not responsible for what others think of my dress."  Yes, you are. When I was a young lady, I did not understand how men think, and what effects my dress might have on them. It was delicately explained to me more than once, and I'm happy that one dear lady never gave up on me; and, once I was really listening, she came over and (with my insistence) we revamped my closet. I still don't understand men, but from what I've been told, and things I've read:  Ladies! We need to wear skirts or pants that fold over our knees when we sit down. Any skirt that shows a lot of leg is a problem for men. They like legs.

"Oh, here come the rules," you say.  Picture this.  You come into a room and sit down. Your skirt which hits AT the knees when standing is now two inches above the knees when you sat down. Now, there is a young man (any man) sitting across from you who can now see ALL the way up your skirt. I have seen this happen over and over. "But I'll keep my legs crossed."   No, you won't, I have witnessed this. You will forget or need to uncross them to recross the other way. Furthermore, you will then lean over to pick up a pencil you or your child dropped and the blouse that covered you "perfectly" is now revealing cleavage and more. You are thinking, “this is so legalistic”!

Here is an example of a time I was at a very, very conservative conference where the speakers were young ladies, whom you would probably label as legalistic, speaking about very conservative things throughout the day- even this very subject.  At one of the sessions, they were up on a stage with some other people.  It was a mixed group and they were all seated, while the mixed audience was below-- seated.  Because these gals were wearing skirts that were at or just below the knee, when they were seated, we had a very uncomfortable view. These "skirts only" ladies would have been better off in pants.  I only hope that someone they could trust was able to sweetly clue them in! That is really all I am trying to do for you.

Now, imagine it’s your wedding day.  This is probably THE most photographed day of your life. Do you want to make your sons avert their eyes from your wedding pictures?  You will have to think 15-20 years down the road for that one.  "But strapless gowns are the only ones available nowadays," you say.  No, honey, where there is a will, there is a way. I have been to plenty of recent weddings where the bride AND her bridesmaids were dressed beautifully and covered, and they did not shop on the Mormon website.  I have pictures!  But I do not have pictures of the naked-shouldered, cleavage-showing, tight-bodice ones. Who would I show them too? I know of ladies that have bought strapless gowns and then made them over to be modest but very lovely. I know talented seamstresses. There are websites all over serving those that wish to make the wedding a special day for everyone.  Do you really want to give a glimpse of later that night to the entire wedding party?  I'm  a pastor's wife.  My husband has to stand up there by you and your future mate. If nothing else has made sense to you, please consider my feelings. Do you want him to look at you when he is admonishing you on how to love each other all the days of your life? He will look your way as little as possible if you are strapless or immodest in other ways.

When choosing bridesmaids dresses, think of the men there who will be standing across from them-- your brother might be up there. Your sister or your best friend is up there. Also, there will be actual creeps there as well. Creeps that will take your body home with them in their mind and lust over it forever after. I was at a wedding once where the groom was standing at the front of the church, waiting for the bride. As the bridesmaids came in one by one, I watched his eyes slowly look one of them over.  Up and down.  I was sickened.  How would his wife fare with this man?  I wanted to stand up right there and object to the wedding!

Now, you are feeling defensive. I'm sorry. I really just want to help you and those men that are going home later to sin. And remember, you keep asking why I wear what I wear. Do you want to be the cause of some poor boy taking his first steps down a very wrong thought life and worse. Your "freedom" could lead to bondage for many men. Does it please God more to have another man think of you as that blessed godly lady, or the lady that makes him feel uncomfortable, and perhaps dirty. I tell you, when this kind of thing was brought to my attention, I changed.  Literally.  I realized that when I entered a room or exited a room, I never wanted ANY man to have to avert their eyes ever again.

Now I am older.  I suppose that I could wear whatever now, and it wouldn't be a problem, but I'm not taking any chances, and I have 5 daughters to teach kindness to as well as many other young ladies in my life whom I hope to inspire toward godliness. I want them to have fun dressing beautifully for God, for their fathers, for their brothers and for their future husbands.

I am not making rules. I am simply sharing some things I've learned. I didn't know I was going to learn anything. I thought that I was going to just start wearing long flowing skirts all the time, for every occasion. Of course, I hope that you have not been paying attention to what I wear because that's really the whole point. Modesty reaches way beyond what a person is wearing. How does she carry herself?  Is she moving about with gracefulness or with an eye catching, swinging of the hips and so on?

I could go on, but I think you get my point. You see, it's not about you or me, is it? It is about God and then others. Now that is a freeing thought! There is no hard and fast rule except this: “Jesus said to him, ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your shall love your neighbor as yourself.’"  Matt. 22:37, 39

The way I dress is an effort to be the woman God has made me, pleasing my husband as well, and encouraging others to do the same. That is not legalism. It is being kind.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Me time:
Remember a few years back when the "me time" phrase was constantly being thrown about? How I cringed at that phrase. We live in such a "me" centered society. I was constantly asked if I was getting any "self" time. Of course, with 5-7 kiddos at that time, I was not getting any time to myself. I became really thankful for just a few hours of sleep! So, that became my response. I would say, "I get ' me' time from around 1am-3am. " Truly, a simple trip to the bathroom became a treat to "me"! I actually found my sinful self telling the kids, " I will now use the bathroom! You cannot deny me this!" The good Lord keeps showing me how very far I have yet to go.
However, I can truly say that I was not interested in getting my nails done or even a professional hair cut. My husband could easily trim my hair as I kept it at one uniform length. Everything HAD to be streamlined. I learned to be very careful with my time. It wasn't time for hobbies. The sewing machine never got unpacked, and making cards with rubber stamps came to a halt. I knew my mission. Besides trying to be there for my husband, I was starting a more serious homeschool setting, nursing and /or pregnant. My favorite response to my inability to experience " me " time was something like this, "You know, I have been trying to die to SELF for years!"

Philippians 1:21. For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.

Of course, I am not condemning trips to the beauty parlor. I am merely saying that there are times to go without a certain luxury, that many other people never have, and it is not the end of the world. Any mother who has really thrown herself into the task of motherhood will agree with me. For a single gal or a mother who is past those really hectic years, I am suggesting that it is good to sometimes scale back a bit on " extras" that have crept into your life. I don't know what those things are, but you do. Purposely cut something out, maybe a few things, and use the time and/or money in a selfless manner. You may find something new to do that God was laying on your heart previously, but you couldn't quite pin down what it was. To those of you that are in the thick of it: hang in there. The bathroom is really a luxury after all, isn't it? I mean -compared to a hundred years ago. And if you have to bring in a couple of toddlers, I assure you, you will regain your privacy- someday. And I won't tell. Blessing to you all.