Sunday, March 27, 2022

Saving Money And Becoming Rich In Knowledge

"Older women are to teach young women ... to think before they act ... to be workers at home, to be kind..."   ---Titus 2:4,5


So these past two 'covid years,' what's the most haunting image you've seen online? Mine is this: families standing (or seated in cars) in huge lines for hours so to receive food. To me, that's horrifying.

Now, also these past couple years while our government proclaimed, "All is spiffy down at the supermarket," many of us conservatives used words like 'food shortages,' 'inflation' and 'famine'--

--then were repeatedly called conspiracy theorists (and worse).

Well, last week that quasi leader in the White House (the nicest phrasing I can choose) finally spoke of food shortages and stated they are going to be real. As in, a real problem unless things change fast.

Chalk-up another thing appearing on the conspiracies-come-true list. 

Anyway, again because it rips my heart out to watch people lining up for food, here's a thought:

If (let's call her Anyone) had, during these 2 covid years, shopped for food just twice a month, each time buying 2 extra cans and 1 package or box or bottle of anything edible or useful--then hidden them away-- she would now have:

104 cans
and 52 packages/boxes/bottles set aside.

If she'd shopped once each week, instead? She'd have:

208 cans
and 104 packages/boxes/bottles set aside. (All at lower prices than what she's paying today, I'll add.)

Seriously. Anyone could actually be prepared for many emergencies, including job losses, sickness, more lockdowns, weather-related disasters, or the aforementioned shortages, if she'd shopped this simple way.

And according to Glenn Beck, Anyone would've actually earned money:

"Food shortages and inflation. Just by not panicking, just by buying two every time you go shopping and using only one, you'll have made more in just what you're saving, because you can dip into your food storage. You will make more money ... by not buying (your food) at that future high price ... it will boggle your mind on how much you're saving. It is something that you truly need to consider."   ---Glenn Beck, here

Remember my last post about enjoying challenges? May this nudge you closer to that by learning to:

--make wonderful homemade soups, side dishes and desserts for pennies. 
--dress warmer rather than turning up the heat.
--eliminate extra online memberships.
--walk/ride a bike more often both for exercise and to save on gas.
--barter for what you can't do by doing what you can.
--buy enough groceries on sale to last till the next sale.
--stay healthy.
--shop thrift stores, yard sales, consignment shops.
--make household cleaners and room refreshers for cheap. 
--skip 'ready-made' items whenever possible.
--make terrific coffee at home.
--run your appliances at times when others aren't using theirs.
--hang laundry instead of machine-drying it.
--sell what you no longer need.
--when possible, leave appliances unplugged.
--store fridge leftovers in permanent dishes rather than disposable ones.
--discover places online like to find free resources.
--group errands and/or find ways to do away with them.
--make two meals at once, freezing one for later.
--make basic home repairs.
--trade items with neighbors/friends/relatives.
--mend clothes.
--trim small trees, mow lawns, grow gardens.

Basically, may each of us--when theses turbulent days are over--exclaim, "Whatever else happened, I certainly had adventures!"

"During the seven years of abundance the land produced plentifully. Joseph collected all the food produced in those seven years of abundance in Egypt and stored it in the cities. In each city he put the food grown in the fields surrounding it."   --- Genesis 41:47,48

When God asks us to do a thing, He provides a way to do it. Have a small house like I do? If you'll ask/search, He'll provide clever ways to store all the groceries you need.

Will you ever hear me say, "Just trust God to do everything?" Uh, no. He has a part and we have a part. Both work together, both are vital, for hey... faith without works is dead, after all. (Yikes.)

Oh, and I found Debby's comment to my last post, perfect!

 "I’m not stressed or freaked out what is happening because in my young days I too lived pay check to paycheck. All of this is in my wheelhouse and it’s like riding a bike - you don’t forget. I’ve been ready - and have been watchful for sometime now. I’m happy I listened to God about no worrying. I choose to enjoy my life regardless of the dark times we’re in."


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Thursday, March 24, 2022

Have Challenges? Be Excited!

"Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else..."   --- Galations 6:4

"These are glory days, not gloomy days."   --- Dr. Manuel Johnson


So Tom and I were married in the '70's(!), back when you didn't save up to get married. No, if you felt madly in love and could afford an inexpensive wedding, plus your first month's rent, you considered yourselves all set.

A.K.A. The Good Old Days.  

My best-remembered times from those early years? Daily creating something from nothing and reveling in financial challenges, which either makes me sound like a lunatic or a kindred spirit.  ツ

Those far away years return to my mind, perhaps because I'm hoping my fellow humans are finding similar happiness during Today's financial hardships.

It's possible, you know, to appreciate challenges. To splash around in a rampant creativity required to make us stronger, wiser and more capable than we'd ever dreamed we could become. 

It's possible to not fear rationing or product limits, as well.

In my earliest homemaking years when we barely eeked by, oh, the trips I made to the library, thrift shops and supermarkets for instructional books, magazines and sales items. But now? Wow, the Internet can turn us all into homemaking superstars within our own homes.

Yes, prices are higher these days, but with wisdom, knowledge and the Holy Spirit, that doesn't matter. Godly overcomers still overcome, no matter what Life hurls at them or in what year or cost.

In other words, inflation doesn't blow God away.

Some Christians say we should be stressed and, "These are dark days," yet I would quip, "Only for those who don't, with their whole hearts, seek the Light."

The Light brightens everything. No really, everything.

" ... God is light; in him there is no darkness at all."   --- 1 John 1:5

"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."

William Arthur Ward

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding, for the gain from her is better than gain from silver and her profit better than gold. She is more precious than jewels, and nothing you desire can compare with her."   --- Proverbs 3:13-15

Need more wisdom? The Bible tells us to just ask for it.


My friend, Susan, asked me to share a list of favorite Youtubers. That list is quite long so here, given the subject of this post, I'll share the helpful Youtubers and leave the sillier, when-I-need-some-fun ones for next time.  ツ

Somers In Alaska  (family life)

The Simplified Saver  (inexpensive meals)

Homestead Tessie Mobile Home Living  (prepping, home care)

Do It On A Dime (inexpensive home care)

Elijah Clips  (ministry)

See Mindy Mom  (cheap, easy meals)

Dan Bongino  (politics)

Whippoorwill Holler  (prepping, cooking, homecare)

Michael Knowles  (politics)

Any tiny house channels, for they inspire me to creativity and owning less.

And of course, there's if you'd rather read about helpful subjects.


When we stay inspired to live our best life, we know we're hopeful, anticipating what God will do next far more than just watching what satan's doing now.


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

It's Still A Wonderful Life??

"He must increase, but I must decrease."   --- John 3:30

"... the Holy Spirit will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come."   --- John 16:13


Perhaps you remember when this happened. 

Back in October of 2019, between 2 and 3 a.m., I'd consistently, poof! Be jolted wide awake. And that's when I began creeping down our dark staircase, curling up on the couch, then watching instructional Youtube videos.

It's like God said, "Do this."

Never before had this happened in all my 60 years and was I tempted to ignore the promptings? Oh my, yes. This girl likes her 8 hours of sleep.

And now, okay, sometimes I'd watch the videos, then fall asleep again before awaking Tom at 6, but a wild thing? Never do I recall feeling tired during the day those entire 18 months.

All those videos and all those new folks I 'met'! Preachers, preppers, prophets, teachers, decorators, builders, dreamers, artists, travelers, pundits and more. Strong, determined folks sharing their God-given purpose in Life, pouring into me essential truths.

And then came March of 2020, the beginning of 'the covid years'. Yikes!

But you know? I felt prepared mentally, physically, spiritually greatly due to God's awaking me for early morning 'schooltime', and all those teachers, and what He'd worked into me since 1994 (long story).

And because of 'what God had wrought', instead of hiding in 2020, I marched ahead, excited at those historic days. "What a fascinating time in which to be alive!", I mused.

Those nights I began taking notes and updating my prepper lists, then eventually that early morning season morphed into something different. 

I'd still awaken around 2 a.m., but only to check my laptop, read/watch the increasing worldly chaos, confusion, deception and calamities, then I'd shut it off and crawl back into bed---

---while feeling God's presence and the deepest, sweetest sense of peace, gratitude and safety, ever.

One thing of which I'm absolutely certain: God wants to prepare us ahead of time for difficult Life events. This whole planet is shaking side to side, even swirling upside down and around? God, earlier, created a way so that, in perilous times, we can stand. Sturdy. Upright and shining, still experiencing a wonderful life with and because of Him.

When we long for God to increase and us to decrease, that still, small voice isn't nearly as whispery-quiet as before. It's actually rather amplified and very, very persistent.

For a reason. Or many.

"But if you carefully obey his voice and do all that I say, then I will be an enemy to your enemies and an adversary to your adversaries... If you are willing and obedient, you shall eat the good of the land..."   --- Exodus 23:22, Isaiah 1:19

"But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed, but to those who have faith and are saved."
Hebrews 10:39
This is not the hour to SHRINK BACK from pursuing God with your whole heart while standing for his Truths. The two are eternally connected." --- Sean Feucht


This lady is sweet. It's always like hearing your grandma talk about prepping.  ツ

Yesterday I finally began reading Joyce Meyer's, Eat The Cookie ... Buy The Shoes. What a treat! And I would highly recommend this if you have frequent 'Catholic guilt'. (I've heard it called that in tons of movies. heh.) I bought the $1.99 Kindle copy (I knew I'd be highlighting much of it), but you can find this book free here at Open Library.

Today's question: Is God asking you to do something you've never done before?


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Thursday, March 17, 2022

Secrets and Another Birthday

Ha! That cartoon is so me these days. "Oh, for a treeless place," I muse. (If you'll drop by and view the hundreds of downed twigs out there, you'd not blame me.) シ

Anyway, ol' Debra had another birthday yesterday and perhaps for the first time, I didn't write a blog post on that day. Tried, though. 

But without the Holy Spirit's help, there's only struggle and frustration and who wants to remember creating thousands of blog posts that way? Not me, so whenever I sense He's moved on, I shut the computer and step away, as well.

Many writers would declare that too simplistic (or something else), but since I'll be leaving this Earth with having written over 3,500 blog posts, I'm content with that process.

Plus, writing without Him; what's the point?

Anyway, after the rare, dreary-beyond-belief fog burned off at noon, the day improved and as always, I so appreciated myriad birthday greetings from friends at Facebook. The afternoon prior, 4 birthday cards arrived in the mail--oh my! How glorious to open those at our sunny dining room table. 

How remarkable to have friends who still send snail mail.

Yet returning to rather high numbers, in the past nearly 3 years I've given away (or tossed) over 1,200 items. All in preparation for an upcoming move? Not always. Mostly because I felt God saying this was a  late life season of letting go. A long, long good-bye.

Here's what I've not yet told you about this decluttering: if you're imagining my home now has a new, fresh airiness, a simplicity and spaciousness, well, you're so wrong.

It looks about the same as before. Sigh.

But! (Here's the encouraging part.) On our calendar pages, I've kept track of the numbers of things I released, so now? Anyone can gaze around our house not spying a huge improvement, but I know what Tom and I have sacrificed.

I've taken notes. Done the work, paid attention. If I slip into criticalness this list, these numbers, encourage me. After all, it's about gratitude and if this aids my fellow declutter-ers, hooray! I'm thrilled.

Yet a deeper, hidden lesson is this: If you have relatives or friends who, these days, stare at you and quip, "You've changed? Really? I'm just not seeing it," then relax! 

If only you and our huge God know exactly the heart and mind clutter He's helped you release? That's all right. Eventually it'll show, along with a vital God-given humility, also, reminding you we can do nothing without Him---

---and wouldn't even wish to.

When God tells you, "Get your house in order," that's exactly when Grace is present to help you.

"So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed."   --- John 8:36


Are you aware of bookshelf tours over at Youtube? What fun to squint and peer at others' books, acquiring ideas for possible future reads of our own.

Speaking of that, I'm rereading these very pensive, dreamy books:

They're full of essays from the 90's, written for House Beautiful magazine. (Hooray! You can now find these over at Open Library.)

Anyway, does anyone have similar books to recommend? Ones full of essays about home/Life written by various authors (as opposed to just one)? Let me know, ok? 

I've let go of over 300 books during my Great Decluttering Season, but these 2 will never, ever be released. Never, ever.  ツ




Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Friday, March 11, 2022

When You're Surprised You're No Longer Superman

"And if you faithfully obey the voice of the 
Lord your God, being careful to do all his commandments that I command you ... the Lord your God will set you high above all the nations of the earth. And all these blessings shall come upon you and overtake you, if you obey the voice of the Lord your God. Blessed shall you be in the city, and blessed shall you be in the field."   --- from Deuteronomy 28


Uh-oh. A move to Rapid City SD is looking iffy.

You know how, in your 60's, Life can remind you that--even with Grace-- you're no longer the leaper of tall buildings you once were? And the not-so-healthy stuff you sowed earlier you're now reaping from later? 

Yeah, well, it's been like that.

But truly, it's ok. Well, er, after some afternoons of acceptance and reminding myself of pretty much everything I've ever written in this blog.

Three weeks ago a Plan B began forming when I spied this local place online:

I 'ran' downstairs and told Tom, "An attached garage! No laundry in a deep, dark basement! Pantry cabinets and real closets! Less than 1,000 square feet! A small lawn with a large concrete patio and no trees dropping hundreds of twigs for me to pick up! And it's cheap!"

Talk about being dizzy with dreams. Pioneer Girl Debra could become, instead, Leisure Lady. Wow.

How quickly our focus shifted. Hey, we still love New York, well, except for the politics, but we do believe an upcoming outpouring of the Holy Spirit can change even those. (Right? Right?)  シ And the snow? It's greatly lessened this past decade and an attached garage, oh my, would be safer for Tom and reduce my shoveling.

Anyway, relax. We didn't rush out and see the place. (I would show you indoor photos, but it's just 2004 vanilla.) Right now we're simply hearing the same ol' thing from God: "Declutter. This is your huge downsizing season of Life, like cleaning up after the party."

At least Grace is here and has us currently excited about living at Hobbit Cottage with much less stuff to scrub and dust(what a new, novel concept!).  ツ

Simply put, God used that mobile home to show us we have options, encouraging ones, and what matters is that we desire His plan over ours. And if we move where and when He says? We'll be happy. Content. At peace.

As long as God moves in with us, it will still be a wonderful life, no matter when--or where.

Oh! And for the record, Tom and I lived in mobile homes in CA and NV so we know about space rent fees. And it was weird; in both cases we sold each home without even having them listed for sale. Space rent isn't that high here and we must have an attached garage (most assisted living places here don't have those), so if a mobile home is the route we need to take, we'll take it.

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."   --- Jeremiah 29:11

“Dependence on the Lord is wisdom and self-reliance is foolishness. But dependence on the Lord does not mean laziness, it means prayerful action and patient perseverance...”
― Katie Kiesler, Because I Love You

Only because of Grace could I enjoy letting go of stuff as much as I enjoyed buying it!


For fans of Mary Jane Butters, you may also like Girl In The Woods. (Their love of the outdoors is similar.) This video, especially, felt peaceful and cozy and oh! Her collie. Gorgeous. And how she prays before meals and she and her husband stay in separate cabins--unique!

And wow. If you love whimsical tiny houses, here's one for you. And that bathroom floor, especially with the light shining upon it? Beautiful (and never before seen).

The older one becomes, the more patient she must be with herself. 

And remember! God wants to give us fresh adventures with each of our new decades.


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be.


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Saturday, March 05, 2022

Joy Behar. Falling.

“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 
 bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you."   ---Luke 6:27


Around 5 years ago I fell outside of our backdoor. Fortunately, my long black wool coat kept me from scrapes, but the jolt felt dreadful and very unlike falling at age 6.

Unforgettable, those seconds.

Tom, who had polio as a baby, fell again just two nights ago in our kitchen and actually? It helped us cement our Plan B regarding our upcoming move. Plan A is still Rapid City. Plan B is an alternate, easier plan, for neither of us is young and capable as in years prior.

Fortunately, both plans excite us. Someday I'll share Plan B with you.

Anyway, three favorite pundits shared video of Joy Behar, from The View, falling on stage. The comments left by folks? Horrifying. All these fellow conservatives joking about a 79-year-old woman falling! 

Seriously, the hate-filled, snide remarks made me shake, feel sickly.

Now, let's be clear. Joy Behar and I agree on pretty much nothing. Oh, perhaps we enjoy some same songs, movies, foods, colors, but not much else. And yes, I'd rather chew gravel than watch The View.

But still! Never, ever would I rejoice that Joy (or anyone else at any age) fell down that way. To me, it looked frightening.

Yet even scarier? The rabid wolf-like way conservatives and Christians reacted:

"It couldn't have happened to a more deserving person."
"She makes an excellent rug."
"Hilarious!" "Awesome! That needs to happen to her once a day."
"My thoughts and prayers are with the unfortunate chair and floor."

... and hundreds more. And if she'd broken a hip? Gah, I cringe to think that still people would've celebrated.

Without love we will never win this current battle. We will change nothing by our hatred for people.

Without love, we are no better than confused agitators. Actually, we're worse, given that we carry a huge God within us, but are refusing to release Him. We're keeping Him hidden from a hurting world.

Too often we're utterly unlike the Good Shepherd who left the 99 sheep to search for the left behind one. The shepherd who rejoiced, not that the lamb was lost--no! But, instead, that she'd been found.

By Him.

"I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep."   --- John 10:11

"For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may receive what is due for what he has done in the body, whether good or evil."   --- 2 Corinthians 5:10

"There are people in heaven who wish they had done things differently. Knowing has grief."   ... Kat Kerr

To my fellow book-loving friends: Cozy old library ambience.


Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Tuesday, March 01, 2022

Is God Giving Us a Break From Loving Others?

"If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a clanging cymbal. If I ... can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have faith so as to move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor ... but have not love, I gain nothing."   --- 1 Corinthians 13:1-3


What I'm wondering? Should Christians be posting meme's like these?

I mean, really? What about the Bible verses like those at the top and these, also? --

"And above all these put on love ... Above all, keep loving one another earnestly ... Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love."   --- Colossians 3:14, 1 Peter 4:8, 1 John 4:8


And yes, I realize these days this, below, messes with our minds:

"Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold..."

Yet even so, we are called to love, for the verse's remainder states: "but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved."   ---Matthew 24:12,13

Stands firm. In godly love.

Sometimes I believe there's confusion in our ranks. Beliefs that because we're so crazily unlike Mother Theresa, Florence Nightingale, Billy Graham, Andrew Carnegie, George Muller, etc., then, well, our contributions are ignorable. Insignificant. They don't matter. 

But today I'm simply here to remind you everything matters.

Every glass of water we gave.
Every word of encouragement, even those at Facebook(!)
Every visit made after a godly nudge.
Every 'I care about you' phone call.
Every present we bought or created.
Every sacrifice.
Every, "I'm praying for you."
Every 'buycott' we supported in agreement.
Every condolence sent.
Every 'thank-you' we spoke. Every smile.
Every God-nudged warning we stated.
Every time we volunteered.
Every mutually-enjoyed recommendation, shared.
Every humorous meme passed around.
Every compliment.
Every prayer-walk through our neighborhood.
Every 'like' we clicked to show support. Every comment.
Every forgiveness extended.
Every lesson learned, shared.
Every 'happy birthday!' we voiced.

Every loving act, simple or complex, stemming from obedience to God matters. Eternally. Always has and will and they're being recorded in His 'books of remembrance' (Malachi 3:16,17, with other mentions in Revelation 20).

Will ours be a tiny paperback--or--what Booktubers call a mammoth book? Just wondering today for myself, really. For all of us who call ourselves 'Christian' during these turbulent times when love's more needed than ever.

"You do not belong to yourself, for God bought you with a high price. So you must honor God with your body."   --- 1 Corinthians 6:19-20

Oh, all the love we can express while we're simply online!

It's a privilege, a pleasure to love people, to help them. An honor to serve God by encouraging others. 


My favorite Booktubers (so far) --

Speaking of booktubers,' I'm collecting their intriguing book recommendations and so far I've discovered these available at Open Library:

The Scent of Water
The View From Saturday
Book Scavenger
Sweet Home Alaska
Greenglass House
Loves of Harriet Beecher Stowe
The Water Horse
The Year of Miss Agnes
The Girl In The Garden
The Teacher's Funeral
May B
Christmas With The Savages
The Quilt
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place
The Twenty-One Balloons
Clues In The Woods

Tom and I enjoyed this documentary: Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice . Bittersweet, yes, but very inspiring!

Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 


 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15