Tag Archives: blessings

New Podcast! Susan Shull, A Vintage Farmwife

 

 

 

I can’t wait for you to meet my friend, Susan Shull!

She is so much fun and encourages and inspires me! She is married to a farmer and her daddy was a farmer and her son is a farmer and it’s generation after generation! I just love seeing her pictures and hearing her stories.  I have a special place in my heart for farmers because I grew up in DeKalb, Illinois in the middle of farmland.  She is in Illinois too so we are kindred spirits. (Mom…you will love this one with all the farm talk (: )

She is a loving wife and mother and grandmother. She loves her three sons and her two beautiful daughters-in-law! She has 5 granddaughters and is so grateful that her family has gone from one girl (her) to 8!

She was an 8th grade language arts teacher for years and now she is creating a life she loves by following her passions and believing that God is always inviting her into MORE. She has so much joy and gratitude – I love talking to her! Listen in to find out how we met and her top 5 pieces of advice.

Susan and her friend have started a non-profit ministry called The Push Ahead. The Push Ahead is a nonprofit ministry for women in our county. It is a mentoring program with the following goals:

To provide an environment where women can find friendship, inspiration and education.
To create a community where all women are encouraged to discover their unique gifts and purposes.
To become passionate women of purpose with strong faith, living an abundant life.
To celebrate and enhance the quality of life in our community.

https://www.facebook.com/thepushahead1/

For more from Susan, check her out on her website at www.avintagefarmwife.com and on instagram @avintagefarmwife. You will love her!

As promised, here are some notes from our conversation:

Here is the quote she read on the podcast:

If I were your enemy, I’d devalue your strength and magnify your insecurities until they dominate how you see yourself, disabling and disarming you from fighting back, from being free, from being who God has created you to be.  I’d work hard to ensure that you never realize what God has given you so you’ll doubt the power of God within you.  

– Priscilla Shirer, Fervent

The book she mentioned she just finished reading is:  “Abba’s Child” by Brennan Manning

My Dream House

I’m all over the map today.

My daughter is home sick so I’m rearranging furniture and hanging things.  By the end of the day, the dining room will be an office and the family room will be filled with lots of new things hanging on the walls.  I have no rhyme or reason and I don’t measure.  I EYEBALL.  There is nothing that irritates my husband more.

My husband is the guy that has a level which he actually uses as he measures and pencils in and makes precise lines and angles.  I don’t have the time or patience for that.  I eyeball, hammer, hang.  Repeat.  Oh and if I’m a little off, I take out, eyeball, hammer, hang.  My walls are atrocious.  Holes everywhere.  So I cover the holes with more pictures and artwork.  Some may call this damaging the walls.  I call it ARTSY.

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(See, they are a little wobbly and I’m not done but…I ran out of matching frames! what to do? Put one up that doesn’t match? Search Target on line and try to order one? Take down a row?  Hmmm…)

Back to being ARTSY…

I’ve taught my kids this language too.  We don’t say messy, we say COZY.  When we change our mind midstream and start moving things around, we call that INSPIRATION.  When we decide to paint something pink or put a chandelier in the laundry room, that is called STYLE.  We can spend hours standing in the middle of a room thinking and just imagining… that is not a waste of time, that is mommy on the verge of a really good idea that may or may not come to fruition.  But that is okay because we are CREATIVE.

I wonder, do other people want their dining room to be an office?  Why do I love “offices” so much?  My dream house is this…

1.Office for official stuff like school papers and the calender.  This room is superorganized.  I go to the Container Store and go hog wild!  There are cubbies everywhere with stuff like paper clips and post it notes in coordinating colors.  Also, lots of folders and pencils that match with lots of Sharpies.

2. Craft room for glue guns, glitter, paint and wrapping paper.  This room is sparkly.  I spend a lot of time at The Paper Source buying crafty things for this room.  I am glad I already have the heated up thingy that dries glitter on your home made cards…Whew!  at least I don’t have to worry about getting that. This is me in that room…

Glitter!

3. The photo album room.  There is a comfy chair in here because when the photos come out, the memories do too and I can spend hours just looking and remembering and being grateful.  This is the grateful room.  The “count your blessings” craft room.  This room also has tissues for the tears when I read all the letters from my dad and all the cards I’ve received and a memory book my friends made me on my 40th birthday.  This room also has a phone, just in case I need to call an old friend.  It’s a rotary phone with a long cord so I can lay on the floor and twirl it as we talk for hours.  There is no call waiting…just a busy signal.  There’s a window in this room too…with a tree outside.  You can open this window and smell fresh cut grass and remember.  Or you can spend time up here on snow days.  I think this room has a built in daybed too right by the window for dreaming.  Yes, this room is the dream room.

Pinned Image

4. Computer room where it is peaceful and serene and I can look at Pinterest in peace for hours.  This room has a door with a lock.

5. Cozy library with walls of books and a fireplace and comfy chairs with yummy fluffy blankets because…

I Like Big Books and I Cannot Lie Digital Art by Mom2Maddie99

6. A bathroom – just because it’s a necessity.  But since we need one, we are going to make it pretty.

Pinned Image

7. A bedroom which also has a desk for writing old fashioned letters as if I’m in a movie like “Legends of the Fall” and I’m writing to Brad Pitt.  I can also use this “desk” for brushing my lovely long hair while staring longingly into the mirror thinking about Brad Pitt.

8. A yoga studio.  Yes, a yoga studio. Enough space for me to teach a class or at least have a few friends come over and chit chat while we lay on our mats.  This room will smell good – like lavender and peppermint.  We will have essential oils and a singing bowl and it will be warm in there.  Music will pipe through the speakers – soothing, yoga music that makes you feel like you are in India, not in a suburban house that is full of “offices”.

white rooms

8. A kitchen – but mine is special because it’s just pretty.  There is a big round, beautiful table that’s perfect for visiting with friends.  There is a big, crystally chandelier.  It’s warm and smells good and makes you want to linger.  There is a couch in there too.  And books.  Not cookbooks, just books.  It’s all about eating but not cooking.  There is a refrigerator but no stove or oven.  Everything magically appears on the table ready to eat.  I need this because I’m so busy being CREATIVE that I don’t have time to cook. However, there is a coffee pot and a cookie jar and they are always full.

We're in love with these Coffee and Cookie Brownies.

So this is my dream house.  Now you know.  Today I will be trying to bring at least one little aspect of that dream to fruition.

I better get some more coffee and my hammer…

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©2013 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved
pictures from me or from Pinterest -coffee and cookies from www.bhg.com- rotary phone from splityam at www.flickr.com   –   yoga room from http://dustjacketattic.blogspot.com/search/label/travel –   bathroom from http://blossomsandbliss.tumblr.com/page/5–   I like big books and I cannot lie from http://www.etsy.com/listing/94463207/i-like-big-books-and-i-cannot-lie?utm_campaign=Share&utm_medium=PageTools

 

 

 

 

 

 

On all days…in all ways…thank you

Lord, I’m thinking of my kids today and I want to thank you for the small stuff.

For the way they smelled as babies. For the way it felt to hold them while they slept…for their tiny hands and feet and for their vulnerability and their trust.

Thank you for being there when I brought my oldest daughter home and had no idea what to do.  For the way we muddled through together, making it up as we went along, knowing that love and some food and some rest would sustain us.  Thanks for the time to linger and just stare at her in wonder and awe.

Thank you for bath times and bed times.  Thank you for books and for snuggling and for laughing and reading together.  Thank you for a peaceful home and healthy bodies. Thank you for the soap you write with on the bathroom wall and for fluffy towels with hoods.

Thank you for the times when you stayed up with me as I stared into the cribs watching their chests rise and fall and praying the next breath would come.  Thank you for sitting with me in the darkness.

Thank you for the messiness and the chaos and the fun.  Thank you for the moments when I knew it was more important to let them eat ice cream than it was to have a clean house.

Thank you for slip and slides and bowling and movies and cookies.   Thank you for birthday cake and parties and silly games.  Thank you for swings and rocks and sand.  Thank you for Happy Meals and Disney World and goldfish and the zoo.  Thank you for sprinklers and picnics.  Thank you for ballet and those pretty dresses!

Thank you for the lazy days when we had nothing to do and nowhere to go so we would walk to the park.  Thank you for the people we met along the way.  Thank you for the times when we were bored and waiting.

Thank you for princess dresses and sippy cups.  Thank you for Bob the Builder and Thomas the Tank Engine and Legos.  Thank you for pizza and pancakes.  Thank you for art supplies and tie dye and pottery and friendship bracelets.  Thank you for baseball and football and bikes and scooters.

Thank you for books – picture books and chapter books.  Thanks for the kind you could chew on and the one that had the fuzzy dog.  Thank you for Junie B. Jones and Ramona and Hank Zipzer and the Magic School Bus.

Thank you for long nature walks and leaves scrunching under our feet.  Thank you for fluffy white snow and snowmen and sledding and hot chocolate.   Thank you for hot summer days and lemonade stands and garage sales.  For convertible rides and fireworks on the Fourth of July.  Thank you for the pool and the twirly slide and slurpees at 7-Eleven.

Thank you for little eyes that look up to me and little hearts that are open.  Thank you for the funny words kids say and the stories they tell.  Thank you for making them all so different and all so special.

Thank you for their resilience Lord and for their understanding.  Thank you for their acceptance of a mom who is not perfect, who struggles, who doesn’t like to clean or cook, who sometimes cries and gets her feelings hurt.  Thank you for putting it in their hearts to love and understand me.  Thank you for the times when they know to give me a hug or a smile or to say something funny.

Thank you for the past with these beautiful little people.  And thank you for the future, whatever that holds.  I’m hoping for more laughter and funny pictures and warm memories…more creating and dreaming and painting and getting dirty.  More time together.

See Lord, when I’m hurried and rushed and I say “Thank you, Amen”, I really mean all of these things and more.  The list is extensive.  I know you understand.  I think that’s why we celebrate Thanksgiving.  It’s a day to take the time to thank you for the small things.  It’s the day we realize the small things are actually the big things.  The small things add up to be our life.  So next time I say, “Lord, thank you for all my blessings”, please know I really mean it…in all ways, on all days…thank you.

 

©2012 Sue Bidstrup, Great Big Yes™ All Rights Reserved