Sunday, June 28, 2020

Heritage of Family Bibles

Bible for Grandbaby, with lace hem tape for bookmarks, at Mrs. White's Home.


My father was often seen reading his Bible.  He would be in the recliner with a nearby lamp to brighten the text as he read.  I would also see him sitting at a desk as he studied the Scriptures.  I will always remember that about him. When we children were young, he gave each of us a Bible of our own, with our name inscribed on the cover.  It is a cherished possession that I still have all these many years later.

When my own five children were little, they were each given Bibles once they were old enough to read.   I would gather them around me, after saying, "go get your Bibles."  Each had their own and took turns reading.  We also had hymn books to sing from.  This was daily worship or family Bible time.  It was a little church in our home.

Now that I am a grandmother of eleven, I have the same opportunity to share my love of the old family Bible.  The babies see our Bibles here at home.  They want to take down a copy and settle on the couch to read.  A couple of years ago, when one of the boys started Kindergarten, he wanted to borrow my Bible.  I said it was time for me to order one for him to keep for his own.  A few weeks later, when it arrived in the mail, he was so happy and thankful.  It is a traditional black Bible. He reads it each day and loves it.

Last year, one of the grand - girls entered Kindergarten.  Some weeks ago, she asked me something like, "Do you remember when you gave a Bible to my brother?"   I knew she wanted her own copy.  I love these precious opportunities to share something that I cherish. I like to wait until they show an interest. I want to know they are ready.  I quickly ordered a pink one this time.  It is a "gift and award" KJV Bible from Hendrickson publishers. (They cost about $5 each.)

I handed this very special book to my little grand-girl.  She is a new reader and will take her time with the words inside.  I showed her the index and how to find the page where the Psalms could be found.  We turned the pages to Psalm 117.   I told her it was a special chapter that her Mother used to read to me all the time.  Then I wanted to save the page for her, but the Bible does not have a ribbon book marker.

Grand-girl and I took a quick look inside my sewing box. We found a little package of white lace hem material.  We cut out a couple of pieces. I told her, "These will be your book marks.  You can keep one on the page for Psalm 117.  The other book mark is for any special page you want."  She was so happy and proud of her new treasure.

The other day, the Mother of these dear children told me that they sit and read their Bibles together.  These are the same, sweet grandbabies that have gone to church with me a few times when they were younger.  I would give them tiny baby Bibles of blue and pink. One for each child to hold as we sat in the pew of church.  I remember them being so sweet and respectful. They were so well behaved at having the privilege of getting all dressed up and going to church with grandmother.

There is a beautiful Christian heritage of owning Bibles in the home.  This legacy of reading and cherishing the Word of God is such a blessing to the family.  It is something little ones should remember about Mother and Dad.  They should remember this about Grandmother and Grandfather. The love of the Bible ought to be passed on throughout the generations.  This can be done by example and by just catching that sweet spirit of seeing such joy and peace in reading the old family Bible.

Blessings
Mrs. White

From the Archives -


Always Remember this - The House Comes First.

Wisdom from Colonial Days - To Earn and Not to Spend.

A Blessing in Hard Times - Peaceful Homemaking







Mrs. White's special book for homemakers:"Introduction to Home Economics:  Gentle Instruction to Find Joy in Christian Homemaking."

Find stories of home life, with photographs of my home, in this encouraging book. 

 Paperback, 200 pages. 









An Invitation - Just click on this link to Subscribe to The Legacy of Home  and have it delivered directly to your email. (Be sure to check your email to verify your subscription request, so it will go through.)




Monday, April 27, 2020

Reviving the Prayer Journal

The Landscape in Vermont near Mrs. White's Home.  (Photograph taken last year.)


When I was a young wife and mother, I had so many worries and troubles.  There were daily struggles for finances, transportation, and getting the things we needed.  I had no hope for any of it, except from the Lord.  I used to write little prayers in a diary.  I would write out the date and then say something like:

"Our car has broken down again. It will cost $200 for repairs. How will we pay for this?  There is no money in the budget. We have no savings.  I give this burden to you, Lord. Please help us."

This would be written at the top of the page.  The lower portion of the paper was saved to write out the answer and the blessing.

You might wonder how we managed to get by with a broken down car while we waited for the Lord to help.  I will tell you. . . We walked, or gratefully accepted rides from family members to get us to the store, or co-workers helped get my husband to work.  It was more difficult, but we got through until the blessing came.

Once the prayer was answered, I would go back and find the page it had been written on, and I would write out the blessing. The answer might have been something like:

"An unexpected job came up for my husband.  He was able to do the extra work for a couple of weeks. This money paid for the car repair. Thank you!" (The answer always came about in an unexpected way!)

At other times, the prayers and the worries were so hard to bear.  There would be shoes needed for the children.  We may not have had enough food.  My husband was laid off work or lost jobs and those were the hardest times to manage.  I would write down the prayers and the needs and then get back to mothering and homemaking.  I would leave it with the Lord.  Sometimes he answered those prayers before the end of the day. At other times, I waited weeks.  But always the prayers were answered.  I learned to depend on God for all things in this way.  I learned not to rush out and try to fix it all myself. I gained patience and faith and trust and was greatly blessed with a journal of answered prayers.

Our lives are not to revolve around material things, shopping, and money.  The answer to every problem in life is not being rich or having an abundance of possessions.  We are to trust the Lord, working with Him in faith, works, and prayers. This creates an incredible bond and a closeness to our Heavenly Father.   We might say, "How should I manage this, or please guide me in this decision."  We pray, "Lord, please take care of me. Please help."   We say this each day, just like we ask for our daily bread.  The Lord cares for the sparrows who have no home.  He provides us with incredible beauty in sunrises, landscapes, the chirping of sweet birds, and the stunning display of flowers.  There is beauty in trust and faith in the Lord.  He knows all our needs in all times.  He waits for us to ask and to trust in Him.  This is what makes life so precious.

Perhaps this is a good time to revive the old time prayer journal.  Any notebook will work well for this.  It is like a diary of needs and the asking for help from our dear Lord.  Then we write the blessings, the answers, and all the ways the Lord Himself has taken care of us, His dear children.

We can also look back and read these precious entries so that we will always remember that it is the Lord who has provided, and not we ourselves.  He owns the cattle on a thousand hills!  He has the power to give and take wealth, as well as life.  Oh, there is great peace in putting our very lives in His hands and trusting Him for each of our numbered days.  We are grateful for His goodness and His precious care. 


Blessings
Mrs. White


From the Archives -

The Reality - Retirement Planning for the Poor.

It means everything to be - Just a Housewife.

Happy times with Family - Living a Quiet Life.






Mrs. White's special book for homemakers:"Introduction to Home Economics:  Gentle Instruction to Find Joy in Christian Homemaking."

Find stories of home life, with photographs of my home, in this encouraging book. 

 Paperback, 200 pages. 









An Invitation - Just click on this link to Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. (Be sure to check your email to verify your subscription request, so it will go through.)




Monday, March 30, 2020

Patience and Faith while Staying Home

Library of Congress: Abraham Lincoln and his family - painted by S.B. Waugh, 1800's. 


There have been incredibly difficult times throughout the generations.  We have endured wars, plagues, The Great Depression, storms, and many great losses.  Through it all, those who have courage and bravery have endured with a steady calm of patience and faith in the Lord.

This morning I was reading from the writings of beloved author, Elizabeth Prentiss.  I read some from her life and letters, "More Love to Thee" and her book "Urbane and His Friends," which has some of her letters in the back of the book.  I was intrigued by some similarities of what she lived through compared to our current crisis with the virus pandemic.  Her daily life and the care of her home and family, through painful events, is what inspired me. She continued to be a good wife, mother, and homemaker regardless of the suffering she endured.

 In 1853, she was shocked by the sudden death of her cousin, Louise Shipman.  Miss Shipman had been staying with the family and had become ill.  Elizabeth had been taking care of her, with the help of the doctor who made visits to the home.  The illness had been sudden and shocking.  She described how very dear and blessed she felt to have had Louise there in their midst. She was a sweet and kind girl. Elizabeth described her thus:  "Her patience was very remarkable and touching. I never saw a sick person so gentle, so considerate, so little disposed to think of self."

Shortly after this, another member of the house, one of her children, became ill. Then her brother, who had been visiting, became ill.   On page 140 of her Life and Letters, it is said that Mrs. Prentiss "became a nurse to them both, and passed the next two months quarantined within her own walls."

Mrs. Prentiss wrote letters and took care of the home each day.   She wrote to a friend: "I was very sorry not to see Dr. S., who called with your letter, but I am in quarantine, and cut off from the world."   I imagine the friend had "called" by coming to the house and brought the mail, but was not able to see anyone in the house. 

Later, in her letters, around 1864 she talks of the national struggle, which is now called (from what I gather) The Civil War.  She wrote to a friend: "My spunk has got a backbone of its own and that is deep-seated conviction, that this is a holy war, and that God himself sanctions it.   He spares nothing precious when He has a work to do."   Yet, news was slow to reach her.  She mentioned that she had not had any news for a week. On page 220 of her letters she says, "I know next to nothing about what is going on in the world."  Her husband kept up to date with the news and shared his thoughts with her.  I am sure the national crisis kept her praying.  But she kept on with the care of her family and home. She took long walks with her children, laughing with them, enjoying each day, and took great care of them.  They were her life and her focus.

In her letters, around this time, she mentioned hearing the dreadful noise of coughing from a soldier, in the neighborhood, who had consumption.  Such sadness!  In April of 1865 she was shocked to hear of the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln.  These were perilous and frightening times in which she lived!

Nearly her entire life she suffered from physical weakness and sickness. She had a frail constitution. Despite this, she strove to live all of her life for the Lord.  She is the author of the beloved book, "Stepping Heavenward" and has blessed many wives and mothers since it's publication in 1869.

I was greatly encouraged from my readings this morning.  It was especially meaningful because of the dreadful time of uncertainty we are living through today.  But I will say that the constant bombardment of news and reports from the media might overtake our every thought and keep us in a state of terror and anxiety.  Yes, there is a dreadful "plague" hovering around and overtaking many.  But this cannot consume our lives.  We are aware of our duties to do our part in stopping the spread of this virus.  We can do this.  But perhaps we should not be spending too much time being updated on the dreadful news going on in our communities and throughout the world.  In my Mother's day, she and Dad would watch the evening news at 6 o'clock.  It was a once a day recap from their local state telling its residents what they needed to know. Then they went back to doing their part of taking care of their family and home.  This is what life is all about - the quiet dignity of caring for those in one's own home.

No matter what is going on around us, we would do well to give our cares and worries and fears to the Lord in prayer. We must trust Him who loves us dearly.  Then let us get back to the business at hand - of nursing and ministering to those in our own homes, protecting them, cheering them on, with great patience and courage as we wait out this storm.

Blessings
Mrs. White

From the Archives -

Inspired by D.L. Moody's Mother - Poverty in the 1800's.

The Lord still hears us - Prayers Which Cannot Be Uttered.

Encouragement in Kitchen work - Basic Cookery.




Mrs. White's special book for homemakers:"Introduction to Home Economics:  Gentle Instruction to Find Joy in Christian Homemaking."

Find stories of home life, with photographs of my home, in this encouraging book. 

 Paperback, 200 pages. 









An Invitation - Just click on this link to Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. (Be sure to check your email to verify your subscription request, so it will go through.)




Monday, March 23, 2020

Ideas for Doing School at Home During the Crisis

School Supplies on Mrs. White's Parlour Table.


During this difficult time, with the virus pandemic, many children are doing their school work at home.  We all need some encouragement to get through this.

To help, in some way, I did a video on this topic.   I share some ideas of fun, educational activities to keep children busy and happy.  These are things I have done with my own five children during our 26 years of homeschooling.

 I posted the video on my YouTube channel. You can find the link below:

Video - "Homemaking and School at Home Ideas (Simple and Easy) - (Homeschooling)"

{*Edited to update:  The videos I do are homemade. They are not professional quality. Thank you for understanding my limitations.}

I hope everyone is okay and staying well!


Blessings
Mrs. White

From the Archives -

For more about this virus pandemic, please see my previous post of encouragement to keep the family happy - "Help for Staying Home During the Crisis"


A Day at Home with the Family - Gracious Homemaking.


Staying Home When There is Not Much Money - A New England Winter on a Small Income.






Mrs. White's special book for homemakers:"Introduction to Home Economics:  Gentle Instruction to Find Joy in Christian Homemaking."

Find stories of home life, with photographs of my home, in this encouraging book. 

 Paperback, 200 pages. 









An Invitation - Just click on this link to Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. (Be sure to check your email to verify your subscription request, so it will go through.)



Friday, March 20, 2020

Help For Staying Home During the Crisis

Library of Congress:  Wartime Conservation through Home Sewing in 1943.



I am amazed at how much has changed over the last several weeks. We are seeing, what experts are calling, a worldwide pandemic.  A few days ago, our local schools closed. Our restaurants no longer allow indoor dining. Some have closed completely, here in Vermont. I have been following the news reports, trying to understand as much as possible from the experts, and watching what is going on throughout the world.

I have been on the phone for several hours each day with immediate and extended family members.  Some of my relatives in Massachusetts gave me local updates of what they were seeing in their towns.  There were empty store shelves and panic.  This had not yet hit our area, but now I am beginning to see it here as well.  It looks like what is happening in surrounding states, is slowly making its way to mine.

We are told to stay home for at least 15 days, in hopes of stopping the spread of a virus. Government authority, in our states and country, have made announcements of what they need us to do.  We are doing our best to follow all guidelines.

I have been confined to my home before on many occasions due to health difficulties and also from bitter winter months here in northern Vermont.  I am used to trying to make sure we have extra things, on hand, like Coffee for Mister and Tea for me.  We enjoy having those daily luxuries in life and hope we are able to continue to do so. I have gone to the market a few times over the last week, or so, to get extra water, food, and other supplies.  Now I need to settle in and stay home.

Our local churches have just announced that services are cancelled for the coming weeks. I have never seen anything like this happen before. But I appreciate our Pastors staying in touch with us through email and helping to guide us through these difficult times. Their faith and trust in the Lord is inspiring and comforting.

There is a temptation to panic.  But I want to suggest an alternative.  Most people, right now, are not able to go to work. Their children are not able to go to school. The entire family is home together. This is a good time to focus on the tasks of homemaking, meal preparation, cleaning, and enjoying time together.  We should be conserving our resources - learning to avoid the waste of food.  This will help us avoid having to keep going out to the store. We want to stay home for the duration to do our part.

We are blessed to have so many resources online - such as articles and videos, to inspire us in lessons in home economy.

But I also want to mention one very important thing - please expect there to be annoyances among the household.  We are all flawed!  We do not always say or do the right thing. We need grace and mercy in our family relationships.  Also, please remember that children - both young and old - will misbehave, cause mischief, and get on one's nerves.  This is normal.  This is life.  Mothers are the referees and the coaches to help guide the family out of trouble and into more productive behavior.  If you notice junior is acting up, please redirect his attention elsewhere. Do not hold grudges when kids do wrong.  Do not dwell on their moods.  Keep things moving along.  Is it snack time? Is it time to do a chore?  Is there free play?  Try to organize a variety of activities to keep your day on some sort of schedule.  This will help lessen the bad behavior in our children.

Mothers, we need to keep up the morale in our homes! We need to be the cheerleaders of courage and hope!  Don't let this get us down.  We can wake up each morning and do the task assigned - take care of the home, the kitchen, and the family.  Let's work on keeping everyone productive indoors, maintaining our health, getting fresh air into our homes, exercising, cleaning, keeping everyone safe and happy, and doing it all unto the Lord.

Do not take on unnecessary burdens. God is in control. Why should we fear? Let's lean on Him to get us through. 

blessings
Mrs. White

From the Archives -

Always Remember this - The House Comes First.

It does not have to be complicated or difficult - The Simplicity of Old Fashioned Homemaking.

Real Help!  - How The Old Time Mothers Survived Poverty.





To cheer you along in your homemaking:

Find Home-keeping Inspiration, in Mrs.White's book - For The Love of Christian Homemaking.  Paperback, 274 pages.










An Invitation - Just click on this link to Subscribe to The Legacy of Home and have it delivered directly to your email. (Be sure to check your email to verify your subscription request, so it will go through.)