Essential Oils- A Few EO Recipes

Essential Oil EssentialsHeritage Essential Oils does not have an affiliate program.  I am not compensated from Heritage Essential Oils in any way for the information in this post.

If you have been following along in this series, you will know that the first place I go if I am wondering about which essential oil would be good to use for a specific issue is Heritage Essential Oils Health Care Topics page.  The research from this site is amazing.  You will also remember that Heritage Essential Oils are the only oils our family chooses to use.  I talk about the quality of essential oils in the first post of this series.

Today I want to share a few EO recipes that we use around here.

Owie Spray

We use Owie Spray the same way my mom would use Bactine when I was a child.  Anytime there is a cut or scrape in our family, the children ask for the Owie Spray.  It cleanses it and makes it feel better.  At least, that’s what my children tell me.  

30 drops tea tree EOlemon_detail
30 drops lavender EO
Fractionated coconut oil
1 oz. glass spray bottle

Add EO’s to the spray bottle.  Fill the bottle up with Fractionated Coconut oil.  Shake before spraying.

Hand Sanitizer

This recipe comes from Heritage Essential Oils.  I love this hand sanitizer.  I really like making it with the Citrus Quench blend.  It smells so yummy!

2 oz. glass spray bottle
Pure aloe gel
6 ml EO’s (app. 20 drops per 1 ml) (Citrus Quench or Plague Defense are great choices)
1 drop Grapefruit Seed Extract

Put the EO in the bottle.  Fill almost to the top with aloe gel.  Shake well before using.

Mouth Wash

I saw the original recipe for this recipe over at Stacy Makes Cents, but I have modified the recipe, and it doesn’t really resemble the originally recipe anymore.  Somehow, most of my recipes end up nothing like the original.  This is my all time favorite mouth wash ever!  So yum!  (Can mouth wash be yum?  I think this one is!)

2 C filtered or boiled water
2 tsp baking soda
12 drops peppermint EOpeppermint
8 drops tea tree EO
10 drops lemon EO
2 small scoops pure Stevia power

Combine ingredients in a 16 oz. amber colored bottle.  Shake well before each use. 

Air Freshener

Lemon EO
Distilled waterspraybottle

If you remember, lemon makes me happy!  I put a 50:50 mixture of Lemon and water in a small, amber colored, glass spray bottle.  Shake well before spraying!  Easy! 

Cleaner

2 C distilled water
2 C rubbing alcohol
20-30 drops essential oils

I have a large, industrial strength spray bottle.  It has ounce measurements on the side of the bottle, so it makes it really easy to mix up.  My favorite combination is tea tree, peppermint, and lemon.  Plague Defense is another great blend to use in cleaner.  We use this cleaner in the bathroom, and I feel confidant that it will not hurt my children as they are cleaning.

What are some of your favorite recipes using EO’s?  I would love to hear how you use them!

P.S. No statement made by me has been evaluated by the FDA. I also have to tell you that the FDA requires me to state that any advice given here is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent disease.

Unglued

Unglued

As I mention before, Jason bought me a large stack of books for Christmas and my birthday!  I LOVE presents like that!  I love to read.  I don’t make time to read as much as I used to, but I am really trying to carve out time for this enjoyable and profitable  pastime.  I read out loud to the children on  a regular basis, but I also like to read something that will help me grow and stretch in ways that are not applicable to the children.  This is where my personal reading time becomes so valuable.

I just finished reading Unglued- Making Wise Choices in the Midst of Raw Emotion by Lysa TerKeurst.  This is the first book I’ve read by Lysa, and I am looking for more!  

With humor and razor sharp accuracy, Lysa pinpoints things in my life that just don’t line up with how God desires me to behave. Wow! So much to think about. So incredibly stretching and good!  She nails it because she is right in the trenches with me.  I don’t feel judged.  Convicted by the Holy Spirit?  Yes.  But not judged.  And just as I was reaching for a Kleenex to wipe my nose from crying, she busts out with something hilarious, so now I am in tears and laughing at the same time.  It has been awhile since I have read such a great “work on me” type of book.

Lysa takes a look at emotions.  Are they good?  Are they bad?  Is it okay to “just let it all out”?  We all know the answer to that.  Of course emotions are good.  God created them.  Is it okay to let them fly unchecked?  Of course not!  

I love how Lysa starts out by sharing some painful and real events in her life that God used to get her attention.  She then goes on to describe different kinds of “unglued”.  This was eye opening for me, as I saw I was a different kind of unglued in different relationships.  Two of my favorite chapters were “I Need a Procedure Manual” which talks about having a game plan when things don’t go as planned, and “Negative Inside Chatter” which points out the importance of watching how we talk to ourselves.  She ends the book with a reminder that our unglued moments give us “an honest peek inside our souls”.  That’s a good thing!  We can use those moments to ask the Lord to make us more like him.

My favorite quote from the book is the following.

Our Lord doesn’t whisper hushed condemnations.  Convictions, yes. Condemnations, no.

I highly recommend this book for anyone who has even occasionally lost it and come unglued.

*I purchased this book, and wrote the review without any compensation of any form.

Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium coupon

Our family will receive free tickets to Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium in exchange for this post.  This post is sponsored by Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium and USFamily Guide.

Sea Life logo

I love going to aquariums.  We have been to aquariums all over the US.  We have never been to Sea Life Aquarium in Grapevine, TX, and I am so very excited for our upcoming trip!

SEA LIFE Grapevine Aquarium – Over 5,000 sea creatures, 30 incredible displays and a 360 degree ocean tunnel! SEA LIFE Aquarium will transport you into the amazing underwater world. Come nose to nose with sharks and prepare for astonishingly close views of everything from humble starfish and seahorses to graceful rays. To get any closer you’d have to get wet! Are you a Shark lover or Seahorse fanatic? Perhaps it’s the graceful rays or the clever Octopus that you love the most. Maybe you simply can’t decide! Here at SEA LIFE you can make up your mind and see them all – from the curious and the rescued to the rare and the enigmatic. And you’ll be able to get closer to them than ever before.

I am so excited to have a coupon for you to visit Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium. Kids Go Free!

Please present this coupon to the LEGOLAND Discovery Center Dallas/Fort Worth or SEA LIFE Grapevine Aquarium Admissions Center to receive one free child ticket with the purchase of a full-price standard admission ticket. This coupon is not valid with pre-purchased online tickets nor can it be combined with any other offer or discount. Valid up to (4) free child tickets per coupon with the purchase of (4) adult tickets. Child ticket only valid on the day of purchase. 

Sea Life collage

This coupon can also be used for LEGOLAND Discovery Center in Grapevine.  Read more about it!

Have you visited Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium?  What is your favorite sea animal?

LEGOLAND Discovery Center Grapevine, TX Coupon

Our family will receive free tickets to Legoland in exchange for this post.  This post is sponsored by LEGOLAND Discovery Center and USFamily Guide.

LEGOLAND logo

 LEGOS!  Does anyone love LEGOS?  We have 4 boys… yes… we love LEGOS!  Legos have been  part of our family since our first child came into our home.  Yes, she is a girl.  :)  All of our children love LEGOS!  We have spent many happy hours together as a family creating LEGO zoo’s, castles, and baseball stadiums.

I have heard of LEGOLAND Discovery Center, but our family has never been and  I am really looking forward to taking our family up for our first trip!

I hear there are all kinds of wonderful things to do up there!  

Check out this fun description.  Explore LEGOLAND Discovery Center, the ultimate indoor playground for kids who are the biggest fans of LEGO! LEGOLAND Discovery Center Grapevine is one of DFW’s best attractions for kids! Reach out and touch the stars in our 4D cinema, build the fastest car in LEGO Racers: Build & Test, zap the bad guys in Kingdom Quest Laser Ride, or have the ultimate LEGO birthday party. Plan your family visit and jump into the biggest box of LEGO bricks!

 LEGOLAND pics

I am really excited to be able to share a coupon with you!!  Kids Go Free!!! LEGOLAND Discovery Center Receive one free child with purchase of full-price admission.  

This coupon can also be used for Grapevine Sea Life Aquarium.  Read more about it!

Have you been to LEGOLAND Discovery Center before?   What was your favorite thing to do?  

Honey Whole Wheat Bread Using Regular Yeast

Several months ago a dear friend, Gwen, from Tolivers to Texas, introduced me to SAF Instant Yeast.  This has changed my bread making forever!  Is that an exaggeration?  Not really.  Anytime I can cut a household task down to half the time, it changes the way I do something forever!  :)  Thank you, Gwen!  You are awesome!

SAF instant yeast

My old recipe used regular yeast and from start to finish it took about 4 hours.  Most of that was rising time.  With the introduction to the SAF Yeast, I can now make my homemade bread in 2 hours!  WOW!  You can find the 2 hour version of this recipe in the post Bread Making Tutorial.

I have had several people ask for my old recipe, as all they have is regular yeast.  I made my bread using the recipe listed here for about 5 1/2 years  and it works great.

Homemade bread

So, if you don’t have SAF Instant Yeast, here is the recipe for you.

Single batch                                                                        Double batch

2 1/2 cups warm water, 110-115 degrees               5 C warm water

1/2 cup honey                                                            1 C honey

1 1/2 tablespoons yeast                                            3 TB yeast

8 cups whole wheat flour, divided                         16 C. flour, divided

2 1/4 teaspoons sea salt                                          4 ½ tsp. sea salt

2 large eggs, beaten                                                  4 large eggs, beaten

1/2 cup butter, softened                                          1 C. butter

2 TB butter, melted (optional- for soft crust)     ¼ C. butter, melted

(Double batch quantities in parenthesis).

Combine water, honey, and yeast in a 4-5 quart mixer bowl with dough hook.  Stir mixture to dissolve yeast.  Sponge the yeast (let sit until foamy: 5-10 minutes).

Add 3 (6) cups of flour, salt, and eggs to the mixer.  Mix on low until combined.

While mixing, add 5 (10) cups of flour until almost fully incorporated.

Cut butter into tablespoon pieces and add to mixer while it’s running.  Mix for 7-8 minutes (Bosch speed 2) or until gluten is developed.  Gluten is developed when a small piece of dough can be stretched paper thin without tearing.

NOTE: Dough should pull away from the bowl halfway through the kneading time- if not, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Place dough in a greased bowl.  Flip it over and then cover with a towel and let rise for 1 hour.  (You can turn the oven on 170 degrees for just a few minutes the turn it OFF.  Turn the oven light on and let your bread rise in there.)

Divide dough for desired use.  (See below.)

Cover and let dough rest for 20 minutes.  (Let it rise in the oven.)

Shape, let dough rise until double in size (app. 1 ½ hrs.), and bake according to directions below.  (Let it rise in the oven.)

BREAD: Grease or butter the bread pans.  Divide dough into 3 (6) balls.  Press each ball into a ½” thick rectangle.  Roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll with each turn.  Pinch the end together.  Place dough, seam side down, in greased pan (8 ½ ” x 4 ½”).  Let rise for 1 ½ hours or until double in size.  Take bread out of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and wait 5-10 minutes and remove from pan to wire racks.  Brush tops with melted butter (2 TB of butter for 3 loaves or 1/4 C for 6 loaves) for a soft crust after removing from pans.

Make sure and check out our Bread Making Resources!

Honey Whole Wheat Using Regular Yeast
Delicious homemade whole wheat bread!
Write a review
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Ingredients
  1. 2 1/2 cups warm water, 110-115 degrees
  2. 1/2 cup honey
  3. 1 1/2 tablespoons regular yeast
  4. 8 cups whole wheat flour, divided
  5. 2 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
  6. 2 large eggs, beaten
  7. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  8. 2 TB butter, melted (optional- for soft crust)
Instructions
  1. Combine water, honey, and yeast in a 4-5 quart mixer bowl with dough hook. Stir mixture to dissolve yeast. Sponge the yeast (let sit until foamy: 5-10 minutes).
  2. Add 3 cups of flour, salt, and eggs to the mixer. Mix on low until combined.
  3. While mixing, add 5 cups of flour until almost fully incorporated.
  4. Cut butter into tablespoon pieces and add to mixer while it’s running. Mix for 7-8 minutes (Bosch speed 2) or until gluten is developed. Gluten is developed when a small piece of dough can be stretched paper thin without tearing.
  5. Place dough in a greased bowl. Flip it over and then cover with a towel and let rise for 1 hour. (You can turn the oven on 170 degrees for just a few minutes the turn it OFF. Turn the oven light on and let your bread rise in there.)
  6. Divide dough for desired use. (See below.)
  7. Cover and let dough rest for 20 minutes. (Let it rise in the oven.)
  8. Shape, let dough rise until double in size (app. 45 min.- 1 ½ hrs.), and bake according to directions below. (Let it rise in the oven.)
  9. Grease or butter the bread pans. Divide dough into 3 balls. Press each ball into a ½” thick rectangle. Roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll with each turn. Pinch the end together. Place dough, seam side down, in greased pan (8 ½ ” x 4 ½”).
  10. Let rise for 1 ½ hours or until double in size. Take bread out of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Bake for 30 minutes.
  11. Remove from oven and wait 5-10 minutes and remove from pan to wire racks. Brush tops with melted butter (2 TB of butter) for a soft crust after removing from pans.
Notes
  1. *Dough should pull away from the bowl halfway through the kneading time- if not, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  2. *Rise time will depend on the temperature in the room and the moisture in the air.
  3. *Yields: 3 loaves of really yummy bread!
Team Southerland http://teamsoutherland.com/

Also in Bread Making and Grain

  1. Bread Making Tutorial
  2. Honey Whole Wheat Bread Using Regular Yeast

View the entire series.

Bread Making Tutorial

I am so excited!  The Lord has opened the door for me to teach bread making classes. My second class is tomorrow!  From Grain Mill to Oven- Bread Making with RaShell is a class that teaches students how all about the different kinds of wheat, the nutritional benefits of grinding your own wheat, how to grind it, and so much more.  Each student makes their own loaf of delicious bread to take home.

Homemade bread

I wanted to post the tutorial included in the handbook from my class so you can make some awesome bread at home.

Note: This recipe uses SAF Instant Yeast.  It will not work without an instant, fast rising yeast.  To see how to make this recipe using regular yeast, please see this recipe.

Honey Whole Wheat Bread

Single batch                                                                        Double batch
2 1/2 C warm water, 110-115 degrees                        5 C warm water
1/2 C honey                                                               1 C honey
1 1/2 TB SAF instant yeast                                      3 TB SAF instant yeast
8 C whole wheat flour, divided                             16 C flour, divided
2 1/4 tsp sea salt                                                     4 ½ tsp sea salt
2 large eggs, beaten                                               4 large eggs, beaten           
1 TB Apple Cider Vinegar                                       2 TB Apple Cider Vinegar
1/2 C butter, softened                                            1 C butter
2 TB butter, melted                                                ¼ C butter, melted

(Double batch quantities in parenthesis)

Supplies

Get out all of your supplies and preheat oven to 170 degrees.  Turn oven off once it reaches its preheated temperature.

Combine water, honey, and yeast in a 4-5 quart mixer bowl with dough hook.  Stir mixture to dissolve yeast.  Sponge the yeast (let sit until foamy: 5-10 minutes).

Mixing the yeast, honey, and waterProofing yeastPictures: The picture on the left is when you first mix the yeast, honey and water.  The picture on the right is the mixture after 10 minutes.  (There will not necessarily be a color change, that was just different lighting in my kitchen.)

 NOTICE:  The mixture on the left just looks like liquid.  See how the sponged yeast on the right is puffy?  It will also smell like yeast.

If after 10 minutes, the mixture has not increased in volume, your yeast is no longer good.  It may have been old yeast or the water may have been too hot and killed the yeast.  DO NOT proceed with the recipe if the yeast mixture has not increased in volume.  Your yeast may not be good and your bread will not turn out.  Check the expiration date on the yeast.  If it is still good, try again before proceeding.

wheat kernalsGround wheat

Grind enough hard white wheat berries to make 3 (6) cups of flour.

Add 3 (6) cups of flour, salt, eggs, and vinegar to the mixer.  Mix on low until combined.

Grind enough hard white wheat berries to make 5 (10) cups of flour.

While mixing, add 5 (10) cups of flour until almost fully incorporated.

Adding the butterPicture: See how the dough is not sticking to the edges of the bowl?

Cut butter into tablespoon pieces and add to mixer while it’s running.  Mix for 7-8 minutes (Bosch speed 2) or until gluten is developed.  Gluten is developed when a small piece of dough can be stretched paper thin without tearing.

NOTE: Dough should pull away from the bowl halfway through the kneading time- if not, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.

Spray the bread pans. Vegalene pan spray

Norpro non stick bread panDivide dough into 3 (6) balls.

Dividing the dough

Divided doughPress each ball into a ½” thick rectangle.  Roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll with each turn.  Pinch the ends together.  Place dough, seam side down, in greased pan (8 ½ ” x 4 ½”).

Rolling loaves

Let rise for 1-1 ½ hours or until double in size. (Let it rise, covered with a flour sack towel, in the warm oven with the oven light on.)

Take bread out of the oven, and preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Bake for 20-25 minutes.  Remove from oven and wait 5-10 minutes, then remove from pan and allow it to cool on wire racks.  Brush tops with melted butter (2 TB of butter for 3 loaves or 1/4 C for 6 loaves) for a soft crust.

Buttering loaves

And there you have it!  Some incredibly yummy homemade, whole wheat bread!

Homemade bread

Make sure and check out our Bread Making Resources page.  More information, education, etc. coming soon!  :)

Do you make your own bread?  Do you have any questions?  What would you like to know about concerning grinding your own wheat?

Honey Whole Wheat Bread
Wonderful, whole wheat homemade bread
Write a review
Print
Ingredients
  1. 2 1/2 cups warm water, 110-115 degrees
  2. 1/2 cup honey
  3. 1 1/2 tablespoons SAF Instant Yeast
  4. 8 cups whole wheat flour, divided
  5. 2 1/4 teaspoons sea salt
  6. 2 large eggs, beaten
  7. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  8. 2 TB butter, melted (optional- for soft crust)
Instructions
  1. Combine water, honey, and yeast in a 4-5 quart mixer bowl with dough hook. Stir mixture to dissolve yeast. Sponge the yeast (let sit until foamy: 5-10 minutes).
  2. Add 3 cups of flour, salt, and eggs to the mixer. Mix on low until combined.
  3. While mixing, add 5 cups of flour until almost fully incorporated.
  4. Cut butter into tablespoon pieces and add to mixer while it’s running. Mix for 7-8 minutes (Bosch speed 2) or until gluten is developed. Gluten is developed when a small piece of dough can be stretched paper thin without tearing.
  5. Divide dough into 3 balls. Press each ball into a ½” thick rectangle. Roll up tightly, pressing dough into roll with each turn. Pinch the ends together. Place dough, seam side down, in greased pan (8 ½ ” x 4 ½”). Let rise for 45 minutes- 1 ½ hours or until double in size.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and wait 5-10 minutes and remove from pan to wire racks. Brush tops with melted butter (2 TB of butter) for a soft crust after removing from pans.
Notes
  1. *This recipe uses SAF Instant Yeast- it will not work with regular yeast. To make this recipe using regular yeast, please go here: http://teamsoutherland.com/honey-whole-wheat-bread-using-regular-yeast/
  2. *Dough should pull away from the bowl halfway through the kneading time- if not, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  3. *Rise time will depend on the temperature in the room and the moisture in the air.
  4. *Yields: 3 loaves of really yummy bread!
Team Southerland http://teamsoutherland.com/

Also in Bread Making and Grain

  1. Bread Making Tutorial
  2. Honey Whole Wheat Bread Using Regular Yeast

View the entire series.

Ken Ham and Bill Nye Debate

Bill Nye Debates Ken Ham at the Creation MuseumAs we mentioned in the article on “Getting in the Fight”, our family really appreciates the work done by Answers in Genesis to proclaim the truth of God’s Word.  The creation vs. evolution debate is one of interest to us for several reasons.  First, God is the creator and He deserves the rightful claim to His creation.  Secondly, to embrace a position that everything around us happened by chance over millions of years is to deny God and to deny His Word.  Plus, evolution just doesn’t make sense.   You may have heard, but on Tuesday, February 4, Ken Ham of Answers in Genesis and Bill Nye will be holding a live debate at the Creation Museum.  You may have seen or heard of Bill Nye, the Science Guy.  Mr. Nye has been very vocal not only in favor of evolution, but in direct opposition to creation as described in the Bible, even calling it child abuse to teach Biblical creation to children.  Up to this point, Mr. Nye (along with about every other evolutionist) has declined every offer to debate the subject with Ken Ham.  So, our family is very excited to see and hear this exchange.

We wanted so badly to be there!  We wanted our children to see a man willing to stand up to those who oppose the truth of God’s Word.  As it turns out, we will not be there in person for the debate, but we recently learned the event will be live streamed.

If you are interest to see the debate as well, we wanted to let you know you can sign up and watch the debate for free.  Go sign up in advance, or just show up on debatelive.org, on Tuesday, February 4, 2014.

If you watch the debate, we would be interested to hear your thoughts in the comment section.  Here are some FAQs about the debate taken from the Answers in Genesis website.

What time is the debate?
The debate starts at 7:00 PM (ET) and will conclude at 9:30 PM. The question and answer session will begin at 8:45 PM.

What if I am watching from a different time zone or just start watching after 7:00 PM (ET)?

  • If you start the event after 7:00 PM (ET), but while the event is still live, you will have the option to drag the progress bar to the beginning and watch from there.
  • If you start after 9:30 PM (ET), you will be watching the recorded version of the program and it will start from the beginning
  • The recorded version will be available at debatelive.org until noon (ET), February 5, 2014. You can still watch the recorded version after that on (AiG’s) YouTube channel.

Will there be an intermission?
No, there will be no intermission during the debate.

Is the live stream really free?
Yes, the live stream is really 100% FREE of charge on debatelive.org as well as Google+ Hangouts On Air powered by YouTube, and will be available to re-watch on our YouTube channel immediately following the debate. (We are unsure how many days following the event the video will remain available on YouTube to re-watch.)

Can I preorder the DVD?
Yes, the DVD and video download are available here:  Uncensored Science: Bill Nye Debates Ken Ham Pre-order your DVD copy today!

How soon will the debate DVDs ship?
Our goal is to ship the DVDs within ten days of the event.

Is there a limited number of live streams available?
No, the live stream is through YouTube with no known stream limits.

Can I tell others about this free live stream?
Yes, you should spread this information to as many people as possible.

Can I ask questions of the moderator during the event?
This may be a possibility on the night of the debate. We may allow a certain number of questions for those watching through the Google+ Hangout On Air event.

Do I have to pre-register for this event?
No, it’s not required. You can simply go to debatelive.org at the time of the debate and watch for free. However, we would love to know about your interest in this event and be able to share any updates with you. You can sign up to receive updates and debate information at debatelive.org.

Will you release more information about the debate?
Yes, we will be releasing a regular and planned stream of information via social media leading up to the event. You may follow us at any of the following social media platforms:

Facebook Answers in Genesis Creation Museum Ken Ham
Twitter Answers in Genesis Creation Museum Ken Ham
Google+ Answers in Genesis Creation Museum Ken Ham

*Follow us on Facebook or Twitter and like this event to enter your name in a drawing to win a free DVD of the debate.

Nye Ham Debate DVD Pre Order today!

Winner of Praying for Boys!

Praying for Boys

I am so excited!  We have a winner for the Praying for Boys book.

Kelli (Kelli.Fr….@yahoo.com) 

Kelli, please message me  with your mailing address, and I will get your book out to you.

Congratulations!

Praying for Boys- GIVEAWAY and a Q&A with Brooke McGlothlin!!!

I am so very, very excited to be able to giveaway a copy of Praying for Boys to one of my readers!  (Details at the end of this post.)  I reviewed this book a couple weeks ago, and I am still working on implementing these concepts in my life.  The material in the book is so very good,  so practical, and so God-honoring.  Run and check it out!!

I am also so very excited about Brooke’s Companion Guide that was just released.  It is not a summary or condensed version of the book, neither is it a study guide.  It is a short guide that has an excellent idea of one way of taking Scripture and turning it into prayers for your children.  How to Pray for BoysI had not thought of her idea before, but I love the laser focus way of crafting Scripture prayers for my children.  Check it out!

I am really excited about this Q&A with Brooke McGlothlin.  (Can you tell I’m really excited about this book?)  It  has been  privilege to work with Brooke on the launch team.  I have been so very encouraged, and inspired during these past few months while working with her and her team.   Thank you Brooke, for following the Lord’s leading, and writing this encouraging book.  Thank you also for taking the time to answer some of my questions.

What led you to write your book Praying For Boys?

My husband and I have two boys who were born just 23 months apart. I probably don’t need to say much more than that, do I?? That’s enough to keep any mama on her knees! Actually, I’ve done a lot of hard things that I’m very proud of in my life, but raising my boys ranks up there as THE hardest thing I’ve ever done. In the book, I talk about how I asked God to give me boys, and that’s true, but the reality of the day to day mothering of what I like to refer to as “those boys,” (you know, the ones who are 250% boy?) often leaves me completely worn out. I realized early on in our parenting journey that I had no power to change their hearts. And while everything in me wanted to be able to snap my fingers and produce good, godly men, the Bible just doesn’t give us that parenting formula. So in an effort to just do something, I started praying verses from the Bible for my sons…verses based on things I wanted to see the Lord develop in their hearts. It was my way of crying out to God to change them, but it ended up changing me, too. After a year or so of doing that, and of constantly hearing from moms on the MOB Society, my blog for mothers of boys, who wanted to raise godly men, but felt like they were losing the battle, I decided to create a resource that helped them learn how to pray for their sons. It seemed a simple answer to me at the time, but the longer I encourage moms to pray the more convinced I become that prayer is the most overlooked part of raising godly men.

Did you write your book just for moms or can dads and grandparents use it as well?  

Praying for Boys is filled with real life examples of a mom raising two boys, but my husband and father find their way into the stories several times, so there’s a distinct male flavor there too. Really, when it comes right down to it, our boys just need someone covering them in prayer, and asking for God’s best in their lives. The 200 + scriptural prayers in the book can be prayed by anyone who wants to stand in the gap this way for boys.

What do you feel is the greatest obstacle moms must overcome in order to be women who make prayer for their boys a priority?

We give priority to the things we find most in important in life. For example, I’m pretty partial to eating. I get sick and grumpy very fast if I don’t eat when I’m hungry, so because of that, I tend to place a high priority on meal time. I make time for it. Some of my friends are dedicated to exercising, so they find time for it and let others things on their to-do list slide to a lesser priority status. So it is with prayer. When we know how powerful a praying life can be—not just because it allows us to join with God in shaping the hearts of our sons, but also because it keeps us connected to His heart, shaping us into the kind of parents HE wants us to be—we make time for it. So really, the greatest obstacle to overcome is how important, or unimportant, we believe prayer really is.

What has been the biggest answer to your own “mama prayers”?

I actually touched on this in Praying for Boys, although I didn’t refer to it as my big answer to prayer. We went through a very hard season with our boys during the first part of 2012. We homeschool, and my youngest son, then in Kindergarten, grew bored with his curriculum within about a month. What should have been a sweet, playful first year of school for him quickly turned into a nightmare. He would tantrum every single time I mentioned that it was time to start school. Every day was a battle, and in early November, after another horrible day, I sat down in my family room chair and told God I was giving up. I’m not sure I prayed anything more specific than, “God, what do I do? Will he EVER learn to obey? Will he EVER stop tantruming all the time?” As I sat there, weeping and telling God, “I quit!” He dropped the memory of a Bible story into my heart. I opened my Bible, re-read the story, and God met me in a powerful way. I essentially felt like He was telling me that my boys needed someone to fight for them, and that He had chosen that person to be me. I heard Him whispering to my heart, “don’t give up on him. He needs you not to give up.” It wasn’t like God gave me a specific answer to a specific prayer. Nothing really changed about our situation. But my heart had changed. I was encouraged to keep going, and felt less like a failure and more like a fighter. That 30 minute prayer session has done more to energize me as a mom and child of God than anything else that’s happened to me since.

What do you most hope the readers of Praying For Boys gain from experiencing the book?

I wrote Praying for Boys because I truly believe we can change the world if we pray for our sons. My greatest hope for moms who read it is to inspire them to trust God with their boys, get into His Word and find out what it has to say about raising boys, and inspire a generation of moms to get on their knees, partnering with God for the hearts of their sons.

Praying for BoysThank you so much for your time, Brooke!  I am so blessed by your obedience to the Lord.

I am so very excited (again) to let you know that Brooke has given me a copy of her book, Praying for Boys: Asking God for the Things They Need Most, to giveaway to one of you!  All you have to do is leave me a comment below, and tell me why you would like a copy of Praying for Boys.  You can earn additional entries by sharing this post on Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest.  If you do any of these things, please come back, and leave a comment for each thing you do.

I will choose a winner on Wednesday, January 22, 2014.n

Thank you again for taking the time to read this review.  I look forward to your comments below!

 

He Heard Hannah book review

He Heard Hannah

Through out the year, as I find books that look interesting, I put them in my Amazon wish list.  Around November, I go to my wish list, and make sure that my books are in order by using the priority settings.  Then, I send the link to my husband.  Most every year, my sweet husband buys me several (sometimes many), books off that list for Christmas and my birthday.  Books are some of my favorite presents!

I saw reviews of He Heard Hannah last year on several blogs, and put it in my wish list as I knew I really wanted to read it.  This Christmas, it was one of the books I received this year.  I started this book last night and finished it today.  It was so good, I didn’t want to put it down.

I smiled, cheered, and cried my way through this story of redemption and healing in the midst of great sorrow.  Lynnette Kraft and Courtney Becker share how God weaved the lives of their families together in an amazing way in a story the unfolds over several years.

The death of a child, the sorrow and deep, deep pain, and a call to the Savior are all included in this incredible story of healing.

Lynette from the Kraft family writes the odd chapters, and Courtney from the Becker family writes the even chapters as you follow two different families who’s lives cross at one moment in time.  Following both story lines at one time is amazing as it shows how God is directing each family.

I hesitate to share too much about the story for fear of ruining the account of God’s miraculous workings.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who desires a fresh reminder that God is at work in the minute details of our every day life.