Thursday, October 20, 2016

What's Cookin' Mama??

I'm sure most of you know of my obsession!
This cook book called:

Eating Pure in a Processed Foods World

You can view/purchase this book here.

My family is eating more and more and MORE food every day!
And we're not a big gluten/bread/pasta family... and while we will have the occasional spaghetti dinner, here's what we've been eating lately:

Raspberry Vinaigrette from the book, organic spinach, organic rotisserie chicken, goat cheese.

Raspberry syrup

Chocolate Syrup (no sugar, no dairy!)
Then we took a pumpkin...

And made Gluten-Free Pancakes

What else can you do with these syrups??

Zucchini Brownies with raspberry and chocolate syrup (NO Flour, NO Refined Sugar, High in protein and nutrients!)

You can lick the spatula...

You can even dip in some fruit!

~ Other Fun Foods ~ 

Purple Sweet Potatoes, Pumpkin Meat Loaf (from the book), and a salad.

Honey roasted cashews in coconut oil, honey, and maple syrup. SOOO GOOD! Probably could have filled 3-4 mason jars, but it was just too good.

Celery Stir Fry with the Honey Roasted Cashews.

Gluten Free DELICIOUS Granola!!!

French Onion Soup... with Batman...

Since I am not doing dairy, we did almond meal breaded chicken tenders with the honey mustard dipping sauce from the book. 
Put these together and boom! A REALLY satisfying meal. The kids kept begging me to make it again.

Shredded Pork Barbecue meat (sauce recipe from the book - with tomato sauce from our garden!)

Barbecue sandwiches with coleslaw (from the cookbook)
Brown Rice Crispy Bars
Spinach Dip with Bacon on Ezekiel Bread and Chicken Stock

Marinated Eggplant with shredded cheese

Gluten Free, Dairy Free Carrot Cake with...
Allergen Free Butter Cream Frosting (not from the book) - no corn, dairy, gluten, nuts, soy, egg ect...
Eggplant dip (from the book) with crackers and cheese. SOOO GOOD!!!

Some things I've been learning with kids who demand more food:

(1) Double or Triple Every Meal and FREEZE! This way you'll have food to pull out on demand in case you get home late and everyone's hungry, you don't feel like cooking on your Sabbath, someone is sick and needs soup ect.

(2) Cook several meals at once: We don't buy any snack food outside of Lara Bars (I'm a bit obsessed), potato chips, and gluten free crackers. Therefore I cook several meals at one time and we keep plenty of "left overs" in the fridge for easy heating (in the toaster over) for a snack or mini meal.

(3) Use left over Rice from a  stir fry for another quick meal: 
Breakfast rice -> Simply add milk, honey, cinnamon, maple syrup, molasses, raisins into a pot and put on low while everyone's getting dressed.
Quick fried Rice -> Throw some peas, carrots, onions, garlic into a pan. Add rice. Add a few eggs. Top with soy sauce! Quick whole food lunch. 
Baby Food -> Throw into magic bullet with a banana, apple sauce ect and freeze into ice cube trays.

(4) Always have some meat thawing: Take out that pork roast and some chicken and a pound of beef. Marinate the chicken, put the pork in the crock pot, brown the ground beef with some taco seasoning. Don't eat it all in a day or two? Re freeze once cooked and you have a really quick meal for later. 

(5) Just continue to buy and stock up on your family basics and make meals within those ingredients. I find when I "menu plan" I spend more... When I just buy what our basics are, I tend to get more creative and stay with in our means. 

(6) Set aside a portion of each meal for husband's lunch for work the next day.

Right now we're trying to minimize gluten, eat soup 1ce-2ce a week and continue to eat whole, unprocessed foods every day. I'm also trying to freeze more cooked food to have on hand when we need them. I'm going away this weekend, so I have a few meals frozen for my husband to thaw and cook.

Hope this encourages you all to keep on cooking real food for your families. It is flu season so it's important to support your family's immune systems!

Saturday, October 8, 2016

The Boys Share a Room

The boys finally share a room!

I was waiting until I thought either:

(A) Aryeh could defend himself 
(B) Elias showed he wouldn't try to strangle his brother

I explained to Elias that his brother was going to join him in his room and that it was his job to protect him. 

Elias ran and grabbed his "sword" (some wooden stick he found somewhere).
He stormed back into the kitchen where I was finishing up my butternut squash citrus soup.
"I will FIGHT the dragons and they will NOT get Dukey!!!!"

That night I put Elias into his bed and Duke into his pack-and-play.
I explained to Elias not to put ANYTHING into Aryeh's crib.

I go downstairs for a few minutes and then go back up to check on the boys.
Elias moved his blanket and pillow on the floor next to his brother's bed. 
He had his "sword" in hand and his little eyes closed. 
The mighty warrior had fallen asleep guarding his baby brother's crib.

The following night, he did the same thing.
I snuck up the stairs to see what Elias was doing. 
He was laying there and every 5 minutes or so he would stand up and peek into Aryeh's bed.
When he was satisfied that Duke was safe, he laid back down. 
He continued this until he finally fell asleep.

Now every morning this proud big brother comes down and instead of the first thing out of his mouth being, "Can I have some kowawa (aka granola in Elias language)?" he says, "Where's Dukey?! He's not in his bed!"


Saturday, October 1, 2016

Homeschooling 4/5 Kids 2016

I was a bit doubtful that I was going to be able to homeschool all these kids at the beginning of this year. But once Alex and I sought the Lord and came up with a plan, I realized it was VERY do-able. We had a great time at the Pastor and Leadership Conference we recently went to  and the Lord spoke to us about a LOT of things. 

Hayven worshipping along side her uncle Pablo :)

We were/are excited to start walking in them! 

Every 6 months or so my husband I sit down and evaluate our family. 

Where we are at and where we want to grow.

One thing we wanted to instill in our kids was to take on more personal responsibility for themselves and for others without us asking them over and over, day after day.

One way we are instructing them in this was to buy them an alarm clock for their bedroom. They were very excited to have their very own alarm clock! Every morning at 8am their alarm goes off and they need to finish their morning chores and be downstairs doing their personal devotions by 8:30am. We want them to get to the point where I don't even need to come and tell them to get moving. They just show up downstairs dressed, groomed, with a clean bedroom at 8:30am. 

A second way we are training them is by having an actual chore chart. They carry it around and check off their chores as they do them. This includes their morning chores, their "jurisdiction" (or the room they're in charge of for the week), their daily chore (which I am able to swap around every day depending on what room/chore needs the most attention), and their evening chores. This way I don't have to remind them at all of what comes next on their list since they need to physically check it off. 

Each kid is taking on more responsibility too. I have a kitchen aid each week that does a lot of the dinner prep work. The oldest girls are in charge of lunches every day. Breakfast is usually just a serve yourself type of deal since I usually haven't sucked down enough caffeine to be conscience still by 9am. 

Now why am I including all this on a post about homeschooling?!?

Well, we believe in Home-Educating. Not just reading, writing and arithmetic, but real life skills and character traits they need to do anything in life, including school work. 

We decided for the ages of our kids, and for our family, we want to focus on (1) Reading, (2) Math, (3) Writing, (4) CKC - Scripture Memorization and Bible Study.

Reading: So the girls have their Bibles they read through 1ce-2ce a year, a stack of readers that get progressively more challenging, The Reading Lesson, as well as a weekly supply of readers from the library based off their personal preferences. See my post on The Key to Schooling: Reading. We do some sort of reading everyday, but we have two days a week that we focus on reading. I sit with each kid for a minimum of 30 minutes and we work on a level that challenges them. 

We use every opportunity to read. They read recipes, street signs, signs on the city bus, magazines that come in the mail, my test messages over my shoulder (which drives me mad! :) ). 

Math: We are trying out Math-U-See this year. So far we LOVE it so FAR. We previously used Singapore math. Math-U-See seems to work with every learning style (especially Hayven who struggled a bit with Singapore math). There also is no grades, which I LOVE. I don't like restraining a kid to a grade, and I love being able to move at our own pace. It's a "mastery" type of learning which means once they have shown they can teach me how to do something, we move on. If we stay on a concept for several weeks in a row, that's totally fine! We may fly through the next few chapters in a day! 

We focus on math twice a week. We like doing this so that I can spend a good hour with each child on math. They get a nice long block of time to really work through a concept. 

We use other real-life scenarios to do math. Alex gives the kids extra chores they can do to earn money. They save their money and learn how much they have as well as read price tags and learn what they can/can't afford. They learn how to count change, account for taxes, and they learn how to work to earn money.

I'll also have them measure our things for recipes (learning what 1/2 and 1/3 is, what a liter is, how to triple a recipe). We'll cut pizza and explain each kid gets 1/4 of the pizza, but it's cut into 8 slices so they have to figure out how many slices each one of them gets. 

The kitchen helper of the week gets to measure, count, learn how to triple recipes (which is necessary with our size of family)

I give them tasks to do and explain to them that they need to have this task done at a certain time. They have to watch the clock and get an understanding of what 15-30 minutes is.

Writing: We have the books "A Reason for Handwriting". Our goal is to finish a sheet a week - Hayven does 2 sheets a week for Kindergarten. They write our scripture verses.

We'll also have them write out grocery lists, or House Rules they've broken, or letters to their friends to mail out.

We are also trying out Gymnastics for the twins this semester. I think they have 8-10 weeks of Gymnastics on Tuesdays. If we can fit this in with our current schedule without anything suffering, we're praying about possibly piano and/or drum lessons next semester, or to stick with gymnastics. Where God guides, He provides. 

SO... having a schedule and very minimal things to do outside of the house seems to be key for schooling a large family. So far it's been working brilliantly. I feel like I could add a couple more kids to the mix and still be treading water pretty well. Especially as the oldest get older, it makes my job  lot easier. 

So here's a rough schedule for our home this season...

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Taking a Bit of a Break

I haven't been posting as much lately and I feel that will continue for a period of time here.

I feel the Lord's leading to work on my other blog a bit more this year as well as to focus my time on the computer revamping a lot of my worship music, noise trade account, worship blog and ministry.

Prayers would be appreciated as I feel the Lord leading me to start a lot of really neat resources for beginner worship leaders as well as work on getting some resources together for other pastors that use my music for their church since they don't have a worship leader.

Please pray for wisdom, time, a recording studio opportunity, direction, skill, and anything else the Lord needs me to have to do what I feel He is calling,

Thank you all!

I will post more when the Lord allows.

In the meantime you can check out my other blog ( or my noise trade account (

Sunday, August 28, 2016

The Hard Part of Being a Help Meet

The many hats of being a wife.
The many hats of being a mother.


Oh how our selfishness can flare up! 

We've been home all day, at the front lines of all the fights, with the scars of the battle apparent on our weary and sore bodies. We've done laundry, cooked meals, arranged snack, taken all the kids to appointments and shopping, made phone calls, solved math problems, sounded out new words, wiped many tears, spanked many butts, corrected many character issues. We didn't get our nap time or our alone time because the troublemaker child decided NOT to sleep. Instead he decided to swallow the last tube of glue. Oh! AND the baby has cried for 8 hours straight and you had to have him strapped onto you every moment of the day. 

Then our husbands come home.

Yay! Relief! We get to check out!

If you have a wonderful husband like mine, I sometimes do get to check out when he gets home. At least for a little while. 

But I realize, and remind myself, it is my calling to come along side him.

My husband carries a lot on his plate. 

Besides being a family called to full-time ministry (which is our primary passion and what we love to do most), my husband also goes to school full-time and works as an HVAC for Bonfe full-time. His work hours are often longer then we expect, especially in the summertime. He's got school classes every day of the week and then ministry (home fellowship leader, sound ministry assistant, deacon). The many phone calls of people needing counsel and prayer. The many "emergency" meetings or circumstances of people needing my husband to serve in this way or another. The many meals my husband takes people out to just to spend time talking, praying, and counseling. These all often come when he just steps through the door at 9pm for the first time since 5am... 

He also has a passion for government. Once he finishes school next year, he is going to be getting more involved in local government. Of course, I have a feeling this will take up more of his time then his schooling currently is. :)

I often say "hello" to him for the first time face to face and the last time at 9pm in the evening.

See you Friday Night! Is often what we say to each other. Jokingly, but somewhat truthfully, since that's our designated family night with just us. Saturdays are also our Sabbath. See my post on the importance of Family Nights, Sabbaths, and Date Nights here.

As a wife, it's my job to come along side my husband in everything he does. 

It's often always at the expense of me. 

Of course I would LOVE for my husband to come home and spend time with us every day, but I know this isn't what the Lord's called our family to.

How do I know this?

Because what my husband's called to, so are we called to it. It's that simple. God wouldn't call my husband to something that He didn't call us all to.

I often find myself envying the families who see their husbands every day for more then an hour.
I often wish we were that family that lived on the country side and life was slow and you enjoyed e.v.e.r.y. m.o.m.e.n.t. 
But then the Lord reminds me I still wouldn't be satisfied. 
What satisfies is doing exactly what the Lord has called you to. 
What satisfies is a relationship with Him.

So then there's the ministries the Lord's called me to. Worship ministry and our radio station (commercials, promos, music). ON TOP OF rearing 5 children and raising them for life, homeschooling, gardening, preserving food, managing a home, and meeting all my husbands needs.

This is our calling women.
We were made for this. 
We were made to lay ourselves aside for the sake of our family.
Other's don't see us do this.
Only our husbands and children see what we do every day and I believe that's why Solomon's mother said, in Proverbs 31:28,

Her children arise up, and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praiseth her.

Speaking of the Proverbs 31 women... do you see how much this lady had on her plate?!? Yet she handled it with such kindness and grace. Also, her husband was known in the gates. He had a ministry and a calling outside the home. She had to "hold down the fort", I'm sure, many a-days when she just wanted her love to be at home with her. 
Now, I suppose it needs to be said that there are some husband who DON'T fulfill their role in the home. They aren't leading their families. They are spending too much time away from the house and their families are suffering. I guess that's the fine balance between doing what the Lord's called you to, and doing more then what the Lord's called you to, or not prioritizing what He's called you to. You need to pray, keep accountable, and know what He's said in His Word and to you. 

As I strive to be a better wife, my husband strives to be a better husband and father.

  • He answers his phone every time I call despite any meeting or anything he's in (or at least calls back right away when he is able)
  • He tells the kids when He is home they are to come to him with their needs unless He is on the phone - this lightens my load and reinforces that HE is the head of the family. I am simply taking over while he's not around
  • He asks me to keep the kids awake as late as I need to so that HE can tuck them into bed and do devotions with them every night
  • He sits and talks to me for at least 10-20 minutes every night even if he's dog tired
  • He says the hard things and reminds me when I'm being childish or selfish (which is more often then I'd like to admit...)

Man what a blessing it is to walk in love. 
Self-sacrificing love. 
It's a joy!

I'm overwhelmed with joy when I choose obedience and choose selflessness, INSTEAD of being overwhelmed with what is my current circumstance.
It's NOT easy in the moment when my flesh wants to just BE SERVED!!!! 
But when I choose it, despite what I feel, or despite that lies others or the lies the world tells me (which could be a whole OTHER blog post - you deserve a break, you have it so hard, you need to slow down, you're doing too much), then I reap the blessings the Lord has for me. 

You know my husband and I were talking. 
Everything is about perspective
How we CHOOSE to view things. 
Are we going to view his LONG work and school hours as a really cruddy scenario that we're suffering through? 
Or a time that can actually be enjoyed
What about this is enjoyable that we couldn't enjoy if we weren't in this situation? 

- The long nights the kids and I get to spend snuggled up reading while we wait for daddy to come home. 

- The long days when schools finished, the house work is done and we get to pull out our guitars and drums and just jam. 

- The pictures I get to snap of the ridiculous things our oldest boy did to get in trouble that day and the slide show I get to show Alex when he gets home from the day.

- Seeing my oldest girls take on more responsibility in helping me load the car up to go places, or carry groceries in and put food away since we don't have our strong daddy to do that for us. 

- Crazy, out-of-control Costco runs with a baby on my hip, a child holding onto my skirt, three more dancing like ballerinas and singing worship songs with a cart overflowing of large bulk items. Oh I get looks like I'm a crazy women. But there's always a smile on my face and a song in my heart and that speaks more then anything I can say to the lost souls at the grocery mart.

Each family is called to something so unique and so precious. 
Each calling is different.
Each wife is unique for their husband. 
I just love the beauty of it all.
Tell me how your family functions!
How does your role as a help meet get hard, yet you persevere through it?

Praise the Lord for His grace and His love. :)


Praise the Lord for His Love and Grace
That He pours upon us as we occupy this place
Gleaning wisdom each day from His precious Word
And applying it to our lives seeking help from above
Wisdom cries out and we answer back
Since without her we would all be but daft
A wife and a mother, there's no higher call
And really no greater privilege at all
Like an art that we study, we craft, and we form
Daily sowing, and watering, doing our best to preform
At the end of it all we look eagerly to reap
All the treasures in heaven that we get to keep
When we look on our Savior, who carried our sin
And present our children and our husbands to Him
"Well Done" He will say, if we're faithful through and through
"You diligently cared for what I left you.
A praise to My heart is what you always pursued,
and because of your love,
Your Daughters and Sons 
They all made it here too."

~ Cassie Deputie ~