Showing posts sorted by date for query hymn cards. Sort by relevance Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by date for query hymn cards. Sort by relevance Show all posts

Alden's Day 2018

You will never believe this. I woke up, mom got me out of my crib and brought me to her bedroom window...and there were guys on my roof. Lots of them. I stayed very, very still and kept a close eye on them. I knew right then this was going to be an interesting day.
Then Elsie woke up and she helped me keep an eye on the roof guys. Mom didn't seem concerned, so I relaxed a bit. Which was good because this day was going to get noisy!
It was only after making Peanut Butter and Jelly Toast that Mom thought of the last time I took over her blog and shared pictures from a typical day and she decided maybe it was time to do it again. The crazy thing is, it was almost a year to the day that we did this last year! So Mom committed to keep her camera out and take pictures all day long. To be noted, new this year, Elsie can make the PBJ Toast! This is a great step forward for Groveskind. Mom is so thrilled. Also, we don't always have PBJ Toast, but we go in streaks for breakfast foods, and right now we're once again on a PBJ toast streak.
Hattie got all sticky while eating her toast and was so glad to be told to go and wash her hands. That's basically all Hattie does anymore. She just stands on the step stool and squirts the soap, adds some water, squirts some more soap, makes faces in the mirror, makes bubbles, talks about the bubbles... and it goes on and on until Mom remembers that she sent her to wash her hands and tells her she needs to be done.
I'm not there yet. I just sit in my high chair until Mom takes the time to hold me with her one arm right under my arm pits, and then uses her other arm to quirt soap into each hand while I splash and squirm and try to get my feet into the sink. Sometime mom procrastinates on cleaning me because it can be quite the mess.
So she puts off the inevitable and makes her own breakfast while I watch. She's doing another Whole 30 right now, with a few modifications this time (like rice) and is happy to be off of sugar again.
But it's too bad she didn't wash my hands when she took that first picture! Because guess where I put my sticky fingers?!! When I said I was "all done!" I meant it. so get me out of this thing so I can go dump something on the floor!
Meanwhile, when Hattie washed her hands, and Mom ate her eggs and I discovered hair gel, Ivar and Elsie got to work up in Lego Land. This is part of the upstairs closet where they can play and not be terrorized by people like me, people who love to destroy lego creations. Also, if they are playing in Lego Land, it means they are done with their morning chores. Or at least they are supposed to be!
Mom loves this wall in her bedroom and just wanted to show you.
So I wish you could hear the audio of this day, but since you can't I will tell you that those workers were ripping off every shingle on our house and then nailing in new boards on the existing roof before pounding in the shingles. Sometimes the house positively shook. It was so loud and exciting! The workers were fun to watch, but we all agreed they looked terribly cold. So Hattie and Mom decided to make them Monster Cookies.
Hattie is always happy to help in the kitchen.
And I'm happy to help too, but it does seem I continue to get set in my high chair. This time I had feelings about that. I was so mad! I wanted to be right there by the mixer, making sure the blade was spinning in that batter by testing it with my own hand. So Mom put me in lock down...I mean, in my high chair and I was not happy. But then she gave me a little tootsie pop from the halloween candy and then I was happy.
Hattie and I went down for our naps, which was a little bit of a stretch since the workers were walking around right above our heads. But we stayed in our cribs and listened for a bit, while Mom got Ivar and Elsie working on school stuff. Ivar is learning about the 13 colonies as a part of his US History. Recently she was telling them about the constitution and Elsie said, "The thing that is embarrassing about the Constitution is that it sounds like constiTOOTion." Let me tell you, we are never at a loss for potty humor around here. Everybody just loves a good toot joke!
And Elsie is almost a full-blown reader! She has been working so hard and is almost done with her reading book and it is so fun to watch it all come together. Also, when Ivar took this picture he said to her, "Elsie, you look very beautiful right now." Later Dad told Mom that he had told Ivar to stop looking for things Elsie was doing wrong and to look for opportunities to build her up.
Look at this sweet Ewe. Just walked right up to Mom when she was walking out to the cabin. Our sheep are so tame and friendly.
And here's Dad working out in his office. He is writing a book right now and it is almost finished. Also, if this had been a Monday or a Wednesday, he would be working at the butcher shop. He is learning so much!
Now look at that guy! And I'm trying to sleep right under where he is working!
Well, my nap didn't last too much longer and guess who was in our house when I came downstairs?!! Hershey the Rabbit!!! Mom had rescued her because her hutch was covered with tarp and nails kept falling on her metal roof. So she went and got her for a day in the downstairs shower. Ivar was thrilled and brought her out to play many times this day.
Then Hershey went back in the shower and we tuned into our favorite show, Shingles at Sundown.
Then it was time to make dinner! This was a big day in the kitchen. Mom made cauliflower rice, monster cookies, scalloped potatoes, a ham and a loaf of bread in this one day. Her cooking ebbs and flows, sometimes she's into it and sometimes she's not. But lately she has been enjoying her time in the kitchen which is good news for good eaters like me.
This was our own pig, our own potatoes and our own onion. We love meals like this!
After supper we all tidy up the house. Elsie is super duper helpful in the kitchen and adds a lot of joy to Mom's work in there. That's fun when a 37 year old can be inspired by a 6 year old's chipper attitude.
And then we got the projector out and watched the videos of Mom and Dad when they went to Tanzania just after they got married. They liked remembering that season of life. They kept saying to each other, "do you remember our life back then? what were we doing with all of our time? I hardly remember our day to day..." I mostly liked snuggling with mom and Elsie.
And then we had Family Worship. That means: we sing a hymn, read a portion from the Bible and pray together before bedtime. Hattie and my favorite hymn is Holy, Holy, Holy. We sing it all night long when we are trying to fall asleep. Holy, holy, holy, holy, holy, holy, holy, holy, holy... Mom uses her Hymn Cards so we all have a copy of the words and it has become a very favorite part of the day. And Mom and Dad are so glad we are learning these important songs. Otherwise we'd never hear them! They are very aware that the Hymns rarely say "me" or "I" or "us" or "we." The hymns are mostly about God and how good he is. It is refreshing! So we end our days singing of how good God is, and then I hit the hay with the other three. And these days, Mom and Dad come to bed pretty soon after. Thanks for joining me for another day! And be sure to read the disclaimer at the end of last year's post if this all looks a little bit too perfect for you... ;)

christmas carol cards

I believe it was last Christmas when I was in the car listening to "Last Christmas I gave you my heart, but the very next day you gave it away..." when I decided it was finally time to make these Christmas Carol Cards. Because that song is the worst. And Christmastime is supposed to be filled with the best.

So I had the same awesome artist who designed my blog do the artwork for ten of my favorite carols, a few that are hardly sung anymore, even in church. And a few that I wish I knew more than the first verse. 
And then when we were waiting for Harriet to come, Rory helped me set up an Etsy shop! What a great use of all that time! You can purchase digital downloads (you print them on your own) of each song individually or as a collection at a reduced price.

I wrote on the site: 
I started making Hymn Cards when I had my first child, wanting to be able to sing the great hymns of faith over him, while having the lyrics visible and accessible. I set them on a stand next to the rocker in his nursery and now he knows 12 songs that Christians have sung for centuries.

These Christmas Carol Cards were created with the same intention. I want my kids to hear the words to these songs, to recognize the lyrics, and to remember my voice singing these sweet carols to them. 

Of course these are not just for moms to sing to their kids. My hope is that they may be hung as art, displayed on a mantel or placed in a frame. Or sung during a personal quiet time, slowing down enough to remember the actual reason we celebrate each December.

You'll notice these Christmas Carol Cards are a bit different than your typical word art. Rather than just a phrase or a sentence, these Carol Cards have all the words to the entire song. That's because my hope is that you read all the words, and sing all the lyrics. These carols are packed with reminders of why we celebrate the birth of Jesus, as well as reminders of the real story we cling to during this season.

I hope you love them like I do. And that you use them, and sing these songs that have stood the test of time. You can find my etsy shop here. The original Hymn Cards, created for kids rooms and nursery's are also in the shop as a digital download set. Happy Singing!

Happy Easter!

Every Easter Sunday growing up we would say a responsive reading at our church that my dad wrote. And every Easter Sunday since I wake up with these words in my head:

He is Risen!
He is Risen Indeed!
He is Risen!
He is Risen Indeed!
People of God, whom do you seek?
Jesus of Nazareth, the crucified one.
(then there's a whole middle part that I seem to have not memorized...)
The grave could not hold him.
The cross could not contain him.
And nothing will ever be the same!
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Today I actually got my hymnal out to look up my favorite Easter hymns. Made me think I should make a set of hymn cards for Easter. I've always meant to make a set for Christmas...
This was my third year hosting Easter and I think I'm getting the hang of it! It helps greatly that I have a family that brings almost all of the food. What a dream. This year I decided to throw some brunch items into the menu, but it ended up being a crazy amount of food. We could have had twenty more people here and I think everyone still would have been fed and full. I'll adjust for next year. Oh but I love hosting for this day. And I love decorating for Easter. Everything becomes so colorful and cheerful. I got three bundles of tulips at the grocery store and and used peeps again for the place cards. Some peeps were partially eaten by the time the guests arrived, thanks to my sneaky children, but I still like using them. And this year we made an Easter Egg tree. My mom always cut a lilac branch the week of Easter, put it in a coffee can filled with rocks and water and by Easter it would have green leaves. Ivar and Elsie loved having an Easter tree and even put the eggs on themselves (I later spread them out onto more than one branch).
Elsie told me she wanted to be "a pretty pink princess" for Easter, so I splurged and got her a new dress at Target. She wore it proudly all day long, part of the time with her winter coat on while in the house... The kids loved hunting for their Easter baskets (hidden in the same places as last year) and really loved the outdoor egg hunt with all the cousins. Auntie Lisa led the pack outside and later we had everyone taking a turn at chopping wood with the ax and walking across a slack line tied between to trees.
Most people got in a nap at some point in the afternoon as the rest of us sat and talked and ate our way through the nine desserts to choose from. It was a really nice day and made for a lovely easter.

I'll end with my favorite moment...finding five family members talking theology in my downstairs bathroom while visiting the awkward adolescent chickens. Of all the rooms in my home, who knew the downstairs bathroom would be the hub of conversation and togetherness!

an update on the hymn cards

They are such a simple idea. I made my first set of Hymn Cards for Ivar's room so that I could sing these long lasting songs to my little baby growing inside of me. I remember sitting in my glider rocker, big and round, holding my hands on my belly and singing these promises to him. Each song serving as the perfect lullaby.

I had lots of family and a few friends ask for a set. And after there seemed to be enough interest, Rory encouraged me to see if they would sell on my blog. We worked hard together. He showed me around paypal and helped me set up an account. I tested a few different print shops and looked for the best quality and best deal. I tried to figure out a good price for the effort put into these cards, printing, shipping and my own time.

And it has been a blast. I was overwhelmed and so grateful for the response. So excited that these lyrics might be sung in so many homes all week long, and not just saved for Sunday mornings.

I got a lot of excited feedback and that felt so good. My favorite response was from my childhood friend Charlie and his wife Katie. Charlie and I literally grew up together. We did a group presentation in second grade that I remember vividly. And then we became percussionists in fifth grade and were good. This set us on a path to challenge each other for first chair for the next seven years of our lives. And then our senior year, I dropped out of band. (totally unrelated, but this is probably my #1 life regret).

Okey dokey. Back to the point. My third grade teacher, Mrs. Ice (here she is at Ivar's baby shower) gifted Katie and Charlie with a set of Hymn Cards and Katie hung every single one in their baby's nursery. She showed me the picture above on Christmas Eve when I saw them at church. Katie is a really gifted singer and I felt so glad to think of her singing these songs to their sweet little girl. She hung them so creatively (with ribbon and pop tabs!) and framed the rest.

It was such a cool moment for me. The whole experience has been so amazing. To see a very simple idea, something that I feel has worth, put out there into the world and then appreciated and celebrated. What a joy! It has me thinking of all sorts of other creative projects.

Each week I still get a purchase or two. It's so fun. Makes me excited to think of all the quality promises being sung in so many homes.

I added a handy little button over on the side there, if you'd like to order a set of your own

Elsie's Room

I love it when other people post their diy decorating ideas. And I appreciate it when a blogger I follow lets me look into their home. It's sort of like watching an episode of House Hunters. So I thought it would be fun to show you around.

Some of you will care. Others of you can just scroll through the pictures and consider this post read. Like you, Rory.

There is another perk. Having taken these pictures for my blog means that I have taken pictures of all of the rooms in my house when they were once clean. (You should know they were not all clean on the same day.) This is a little gift to myself so that I can look at these pictures later and say, "oh that's a nice room when the laundry is all put away and the garbage is emptied and Ivar's toys aren't spread out everywhere."

My photography isn't amazing. Wish I had a wide angle lens like the guy who came and took pictures for selling our Minneapolis house. Those pictures were lovely. But I tried my best.

Elsie's room is a fun room to start with because it was basically one huge diy project. I didn't have money to spend on her nursery, so I had to get creative. And I did. See those three pictures over her crib? I bought the frames at a farm sale in Nebraska years ago. I think they were 3 for a buck and are handmade. And the art inside is from my favorite kids book with the artwork by Jill McDonald. More on her another time...I adore her. But all this to say, I bought the book for ten dollars and filled four (one frame is on the other side of the room) frames by cutting up the pages.

It felt a little terrible to cut up a book, but I have another copy of this one. And now I  can look at and love her art every single day.

The next diy project cost three dollars. I found this butterfly wrapping paper at a local gift shop and loved it. Wasn't sure what I would do with it, but knew it was for Elsie's nursery  In the end, I used modge podge to stick it on top of an end table. And I filled three frames with the leftovers. I already had the frames from for four bucks I got more art and a cool table.

When we were staging our home to sell in Minneapolis, I bought a few frames at Ikea. Turns out you can paint them without having to prime or sand them. And they look great. I painted these for my Hymn Cards.

The whole nursery color scheme was based around this little horse pictured below. This was Elsie's first gift, given by my Grandma B at her funeral. Someone (was it Sarah? Aunt Louie? Aunt Jan?) had the good idea when Grandma was dying to have her snuggle with a new stuffed animal for each of the great grandbabies who were still growing inside of their mama's. When it was given to me I thought, if this baby is a girl, we're decorating a nursery around these fun colors.

The pennant was from my sister-in-law Lisa and the dresser was the biggest splurge, from Ikea and worth every dime. The drawers open smoothly and the height is perfection for a changing table. Ivar has the smaller version and I'm thinking Rory and I may get the tall and skinny model. Our home may very well be sponsored in part by the Hemnes Dresser from Ikea one day.

And finally, I initially hung this baby quilt in the window as a temporary "until I make a curtain that fits." The colors are more pastel than the rest of the room, but I do adore the quilt. And it comes with special memories. However, whenever anyone sees Elsie's room for the first time they mention this quilt-as-a-curtain idea as their favorite part. It makes me laugh because I spent time and thought crafting the rest of the room, and this curtain has become the main talking point! And those socks had to be added. Every time I see them I hold her a little longer. Babies grow so fast! How on earth did those socks fit her once?!!

That's my design on a dime. Literally, dimes. Other than the dresser, I maybe spent forty bucks on the whole thing. I give all the credit to the hours of my life spent watching HGTV. 

**Just looked through this post and realized I am lacking some very helpful wide shots of the whole room...I'll work on that for future home tour posts. :)

so grateful

It is such a good feeling to be supported by friends, family and people I don't even know. I am excited about these hymn cards. Not just as a new personal venture, but because these words are powerful. These songs have moved my own heart time and time again.

Did you catch the comments from yesterday's post?

My brother-in-law Jedd wrote, "I vividly remember listening to my Grandma Beulah clearly singing every word to "As The Green Blade Rises" even though she couldn't tell you if she'd eaten that day and couldn't read because of her cataracts. I'd never heard the hymn before, I've never sung it since and I didn't sing it that Sunday either. I just listened to her and wept."

I read this and was grateful that Jedd gets it. I looked up the hymn. I recognized it once I heard it. You might too. The words are awesome. The melody is haunting. You can click here to listen to the tune and read the words. Love is come again.

And then my friend Renee (we attended seminary together) wrote, "A note re: what you wrote about the inspiration coming from working in the nursing home... after working in this environment for five years now I often wonder what our generation's "collective memory" will be when we are in senior care. The "greatest generation" has events (WWII, Depression, etc) and songs (hundreds) and mainstays from church (hymns and liturgy) that bind them together and are easily recalled despite even, in some cases, severe memory loss. What does our generation have? What binds us together?"

I don't have an answer to this one. I think about it often as well and would love to hear what anyone else thinks too. Even worship music now seems to cycle every three months or so. You don't sing any one song for very long in a church anymore. I think this is why I want to know these hymns and why I want my kids to know them too.

I remember lots of summer nights at Mount Carmel Family Camp, sitting in the chapel after worship, while my aunts and uncles sang hymns out of an old Lutheran songbook. They always sang a song called, "Living for Jesus." I never heard that song anywhere else but it was my grandparents favorite song. So they made a choir with their kids and the song was taught to the next generation too.

And I suppose that is the simplest motive behind the hymn cards. To get these words in front of our faces again. To get these songs stuck in our heads. So that we remember them and the next generation learns to love them too.

hymn cards for sale!

From the day I posted my first pictures of the Hymn Cards I made for our baby's nursery, I have been asked (and begged) to sell these Hymn Cards and finally starting today they are available!

This first collection comes with twelve hymns and are all my personal favorites. Of course, as soon as I say that I can think of twelve more personal favorites. And reading over the list you will probably wonder why I didn't include some of your favorites. I guess I had to start somewhere. There are some good, solid lyrics in these songs, promises to live by. I hope they bring encouragement and hope to your family as they have mine.

Inspiration for these the Hymn Cards came from working on the memory loss floor of a nursing home. I led the Sunday morning worship service for a group of men and women who often could not remember their own family. And yet, when we started singing What a Friend We have in Jesus, or spoke the words of the Lord's Prayer or the 23rd Psalm, new voices would join in, remembering every word. Those were powerful moments in worship, watching the songs of old calm anxious hearts, listening to incoherent sentences turn to harmonious singing. I remember deciding then that I, too, wanted to know these promises so well that when my memory fails, my heart would still remember.

I have my set of Hymn Cards on a little easel on the table next to my glider rocker. I can sit and rock my kids while looking right at the words of a beloved song, singing all four verses as my babies drift to sleep.

The coolest thing about singing these truths and promises to my kids is that God ends up singing these songs to me. The words are for me, too. And my heart is calmed, my trust is back in Jesus and I sleep as soundly as my babies.

For ten dollars, you can download a PDF of all twelve hymns to print on your own. For twenty dollars I will print the hymns on card stock and send them right to your door.

I’m excited about having these cards in homes all over, excited to imagine all of us singing these songs, remembering these promises. You might put them on the sill of your kitchen window to sing while doing the dishes. You might put them on the counter in your bathroom to sing as you blow dry your hair. You might put them on your desk next to your Bible for your devotional time. You might put them in your kid’s room, ready for bedtime prayers. You might give them as a gift for Christmas. I hope you are blessed by them. And I hope the promises take root in your heart once again.

For ordering information, click here.