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Wholesome Humor -

Archive for the ‘Wholesome Humor’ Category

Little Boy Kneels

Little Boy kneels at the foot of his bed,
Droops on his little hands little gold head.
Hush, hush, whisper who dares?
Christopher Robin is saying his prayers.

~A.A. Milne

An heritage from Him

An heritage from Him

It was one of those horrible cases of hiccups that, to be brutally honest, sounded a lot like I imagine a hippo in labor would sound…and I was only mildly less uncomfortable than said hippo. It was difficult getting through evening prayers between hics.

When my turn rolled around, I kept it short and sweet, ending with a simple request for God hic to cure hic my hiccups.

Gone. Instantly.

All eyes were on Mama.


One little boy’s wheels were turning, and out came another little prayer:

“And please give Mommy a boy baby and a girl baby. Amen.”

Pause. Look around.

“Mommy, when is God going to give us the boy baby and the girl baby?”

When indeed…?

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Mr(s). Grill

I am not a feminist. I am what some may term “old-fashioned” as I cheerfully don my apron, nurture my children, and tend to my husband’s needs. It’s not that I can’t do man’s work. It’s just that my man handles man’s work immensely better than I do. I am a woman, and as such I joyfully assume the roles more commonly associated with “the weaker sex.” I prefer to sew on buttons, bake pies, and change diapers, and leave the tough stuff to someone with muscles!

This can't be that hard!

This can't be that hard!

Why, then, did Memorial Day find me hovering over a huge grill when I usually declare grilling “man’s work,” and retreat to the safety of my kitchen to whip up side dishes and desserts?

A song was in the works. My musician husband was deep in that lyrical realm that ensnares him for days and from which he eventually emerges with a musical masterpiece. Not wanting to interrupt the creative flow of my Music Man, I opted to leave my hubby to his chord progressions and harmonic genius and attempt the grilling myself. So I bolstered my courage, picked up a grilling spatula and some raw meat, and headed out to the grill.

I was spied en route by my eldest daughter. The years had not dulled her memory of the time I exploded a grill and singed all the hair off my arm, miraculously leaving the rest of me and my family unscathed. Read the rest of this entry »

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How Does Our Garden Grow?

Feeding the strawberries

Feeding the strawberries

It is with eager anticipation that we plant our garden each year, holding out hope that, despite the rock hard caliche under our depleted soil, despite the limitations of a container garden, despite the desert sun, valley wind, and unreliable sprinkler system, despite the fact that all odds are stacked against us and we haven’t a lick of gardening sense between us, somehow, in some way we will feed ourselves from our own meager plantings. We have never come remotely close to realizing this hope, yet we foolishly blunder forward!

Our successes have been rare, but the sweet memory of them drives us onward. We had a meager feast of strawberry shortcake one evening several years ago, having tenderly picked each puny berry from our plants. Another year we harvested an impressive handful of hot peppers. Two zucchini about the size of my husband’s thumb were the prize of two years past. Last year we grew a watermelon with a remarkable diameter of two inches; it was too cute to eat. A spattering of home-grown herbs have enhanced our eating throughout our gardening attempts. Over the course of ten years, we have successfully managed to grow enough food to sustain a family of eight for fifteen minutes. Read the rest of this entry »

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Flatter me not!

Always honest!

Always honest!

In an ongoing effort to train our children in godly honesty, I dove this week into the topic of false flattery versus worthy compliments. Using real-life examples, I showed my ladies how meaningful a compliment is when it is spoken in truth, but how empty and dishonest flattery is in contrast.

“He who rebukes a man will in the end gain more favor than he who has a flattering tongue.” ~Proverbs 28:23

At the same time, I tackled the issue of building each other up. I explained how constant negativity and harsh words can harm others, but how words of encouragement and honest praise are a blessing to the recipient.

“A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.” ~Proverbs 25:11

I encouraged them to guard their tongues, choose their words carefully, and refrain from false flattery. I called on them to make an extra effort to look for opportunities to build each other up.

Words from Mother often lose their potency en route to young brains, and I wondered what effect if any would come of it. Any conscientious parent thrills to see a bit of maturity and compassion in her children. Would they prove to have listened and taken the lesson to heart?

You decide. Read the rest of this entry »

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How to Take a Family Photo

Follow these simple steps to achieve a picture-perfect family photo:


Step 1: Find a relatively clean space to squeeze eight people so all faces are showing.


Step 2: Convince the napless boy who already had a very long day that he can, indeed, stand still for another five minutes . . . okay three minutes. If necessary, bribe with M&Ms.


Step 3: Remind everyone over age three to look forward and keep smiling. No rabbit ears back there!


Step 4: Tag team the baby, also napless, also suffering from a very long day. Remind yourself that she is still in training. Consider actually giving her that bottle she’s focused on.


Step 5: Do a quick analysis of your photo editing skills.  Are you capable of pasting the baby into the photo?  If yes, you are finished.  If no, continue to step 6.


Step 6: After reminding everyone to look forward and keep smiling no matter what, make baby laugh using her favorite trick.


Step 7: Remind the photographer to take the picture after the baby lands.  Also remind girls in back row to resist the effects of gravity.  This is also a good time to casually insert an M&M reminder.


Step 8: Lower your standards.


Step 9: Success! Let’s go eat…M&Ms, what else?!

When tempted to compare your life or family to the glimpses you have of another person’s life or family, remember that behind every “perfect” picture are a whole lot of retakes, and quite possibly a little boy who, despite some solid training, is being held in place by the promise of M&Ms.

Special thanks to my brother, Jonathon, for the photo session!

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Motherhood is Messy

072Covered in honey, how I do not know, he comes to me with his hands up, his hair stuck in impossible directions.

“I’m sticky, Mommy.”

“Tub, now!” I revert to my mono-syllabic mom-speak.

I carry Mr. Sticky to the tub, peel off the outer layer of goo which still remotely resembles a shirt and jeans, and run the water.

My smallest children have always been water magnets. They hear the water, they come running. This time is no different. With a baby on my lap and two children in the tub, I start the scrub routine, until…

“Mommy, I haffa go pottyyyyyy!”

106“Ah, ah, ah, ah! Don’t go in here!” shrieks the child who all too often has been whisked prematurely out of a tub when her brother adds a little magic of his own to the mix.

I set the slippery, wet boy on the toilet against the opposite wall and return to my scrubbing.

Flying solo on the potty behind me, my in-training son shoots me in the back with…well, the only ammunition he has at the moment.

His look of shock matches mine. This child has wet on me a lot, but usually I see it coming. Being shot in the back is a new twist. The little fellow doesn’t know whether to laugh or…run! He watches my face carefully before determining his next move. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Blustery Day

mr-poppinsWhat do homeschooled children do on their afternoons off?

Today my children conducted an experiment of sorts.

The question:

How many umbrellas does our little brother have to hold in order for him to blow away?

The answer:

Oops. Here comes Mommy!

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