Monday, November 30, 2015

Of Mice and Home



For those who live in the country and have the occasional field mouse flitting across the floor, I want to share something  I have recently found.  It is an organic mouse mint "tea bag" if you want to call it that.  It can be placed in kitchen drawers, in the laundry room and where there might be a tiny place mice get in, and in corners of all rooms of the house. Toss the bag behind furniture, on windowsills, under beds, in closets --- don't forget under the sink, and anywhere out of sight.  It makes the house smell nice, too.    

People are always telling me how to trap or catch the field mice, but as I do not want the mice to want to come in the house at all, I find these tea bags a deterrant and a preventative.  The field mice are repelled by the strong mint scent of these bags. There are different brands in different kinds of containers, including some in cans that allow pouring the ingredients along the outside of your house.  I shake a little of the loose granuals just along the sides of the door, and I have not had any evidence of field mice in several weeks since putting out these little bags.  

The problem with other kinds of deterrants, such as traps, is you still have the mouse in your house. 
Using this method, they will not come in at all, or make a quick retreat.

Here is what the product description says:

"Shake away mouse repellent Get rid of mice with a hands-off, non toxic approach. The organic formula composed of mint, cedar and rosemary oil is free of chemicals. Just place the packs wherever you've seen mice and the scent will send them packing. Forget gross traps and dead finds. Each packet lasts up to 60 days with immediate results. Four 1.5 oz packets. Also great for RVs, campers, boats and garage."

The lable tells you how many bags you need per square feet. You will need two or three for the garage, one for each room if the rooms are small, and one for each drawer and cupboard.

The bags can be refreshed by shaking them a little to mix up the granuals. Its a little  extra work, but a lot nicer than allowing the mice inside the house in the first place. The scent makes them quickly go back out the place they came in.  We cannot always find those tiny places, and sometimes mice will chew through the areas we seal up. These bags do help a lot in keeping them out.

There are also other ways to prevent mice and bigs from coming inside, such as applying plaster on all holes and cracks you find, and using steel wool in places.  However the mice can get through sometimes, and the scented mice tea bags add an extra barrier if you need it.

Mice get into storage areas or anywhere things are closely packed, such as wood piles, clothing, boxes of papers, etc.  Since this is non-toxic, you can use it in your storage boxes, and it is sure smells better than moth ball, which in the past have been used in storage boxes.

I have been buying my mouse repellent at Wal-Mart and other places that sell repellents.

I found this brand to be effective, also.  It is called "fresh cab".  A good side-effect is they also freshenup your   dishtowels if you have them in a kitchen drawer. Some of the newer models of kitchen cabinetry have small air vents to prevent the mustiness of a closed up drawer, but for those of you who still have the older cabinets, these organic mint bags work well.

These other two brands are for shaking just outside your walls, on the ground, or the areas where field mice sneak in.  You could also make your own herbal bags from your home grown mint, but for those of us in a hurry, it is nice to have it ready-made.

Your home can be the cleanest, neatest, most uncluttered place, but if you live on your farm or near a field or have a large amount of property around it, the field mice find it a refuge and a place to nest. These priducts may also be useful in suburban, neighborhood, apartment and other types of dwellings, and i am only reporting how it has worked for me.  Too bad i am not selling the stuff, because it is a very popular priduct. Often the shelves are empty or nearly empty, as customers like it well enough to buy large supplies.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Take Your Leisure

Leisure is a time free from employment, when you are not in a hurry.The dictionary definition of leisure is "vacant time."  During homeschooling, we had daily rest and do-nothing time where we could all slow down, calm racing thoughts, and allow our minds and bodies to rest.

Leisure is an important time to rest and get your thoughts in order: consider what you need to do and the things you would like to accomplish. "Take your leisure" means to take your time."

Sometimes, a few moments of leisure can help you get energy, ideas and motivation.

Leisure can foster feelings of contentment in life and in the home.

If you are at home, keeping house and taking care of others,  please do not neglect daily lesure time for both yourself and your family, for this is something that is reviving.

Without leisure time, it is sometimes slower and harder to get things done. Make leisure as luxurious as you can, using what you have.  One lady told me, "If i do not take my leisure, my family will not have the best of me. Without my rest, they do not have ME at all!"  When you do not take leisure time, it is easy to lose a sense of yourself, and your destination.  Even on road trips we stop and take tea, just to rest.

Over the years, i have thought  about this, and noticed when I say "I do not need to stop for tea today. I am too busy and accomplishing a lot and do not want to pause," there is a feeling of being hurried, and not a sense of peace.

(These are photographs of "Prairie Rose" English china, from Royal Ashton and Royal Albert.)

Saturday, November 21, 2015

The Toy-Strewn Home

                                  Children's Pasttimes 1912 by Frederick Clement Gad

This is a reminder to let your children be children, and do not rush them into being all grown-up. Comfort them when they are hurt and let them cry. Let them have uninterrupted play, because their minds are growing and their thinking is forming. To be often interrupted and channeled into other activities makes it harder to develop a thought process. Simple playing is one way to develop contentment.
Give me a house where the toys are strewn,
Where the dolls are asleep in the chairs,
Where the building blocks and the toy balloon
And the soldiers guard the stairs. 

Let me step in a house where the tiny cart
With the horses rules the floor,
And rest comes into my weary heart,
For I am at home once more. 

Give me the house with the toys about,
With the battered old train of cars,
The box of paints and the books left out,
And the ship with her broken spars. 

Let me step in a house at the close of day
That is littered with children’s toys,
And dwell once more in the haunts of play,
With the echoes of by-gone noise. 

Give me the house where the toys are seen,
The house where the children romp,
And I’ll happier be than man has been
‘Neath the gilded dome of pomp. 

Let me see the litter of bright-eyed play
Strewn over the parlor floor,
And the joys I knew in a far-off day
Will gladden my heart once more. 

Whoever has lived in a toy-strewn home.
Though feeble he be and gray,
Will yearn, no matter how far he roam,
For the glorious disarray 

Of the little home with its littered floor
That was his in the by-gone days ;
And his heart will throb as it throbbed before,
When he rests where a baby plays.
Edgar A. Guest

Friday, November 13, 2015

November Painting

I am still using the child's paint box because I do not know how long my interest in painting sewing designs will be, but I do have proper water color paper this time, which was worth the price.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Dressing for Worship

The Message in this video is about dressing for respect and success. Please click on the arrow to watch.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Answers About Tattoos

This video includes an interview with a former tattoo artist who shares his knowledge of the danger of tattoos. He states that he people applying the tattoos are not concerned with the health of your skin.

Ladies, particularly, have always enjoyed changes in their appearance. Hairstyles, makeup, jewelry and clothing can be changed. There are many things available that have no permanent effect on the skin.

For more reading on this subject, please see Roxy's article by the same name, The Truth About Tattoos, and Pearls Never Go Out of Style.

The skin is the biggest part of your immune system, and as such, should be protected and nourished and cared for. Once it has been punctured, your immune system is compromised, says the gentleman on the film.

Some readers who have seen this video have left comments that I am including on this post:

"Where I live, in Australia, tattoos are everywhere. Young men and women are falling for the fad, and when I see them I feel pity for them. Sportsmen have full sleeves of tattoos, and even everyday men have these and some have full leg tattoos. The most shocking for me though is young women who have sleeves, leg and back tattoos. How can women not understand the fickle nature of fashion? Which woman would ever choose to wear the same item of clothing everyday for a month, let alone the rest of your life??? I feel a sense of pity for the young who mark themselves forever with these things."

"Thank you for presenting this informative video. I have never seen any tattoos that made a person look better and it breaks my heart when I see young girls with tattoos all over them. Why tattoos and body piercings have become so popular is beyond my understanding. Recently I was reading an article about hair coloring and learned that people with tattoos can sometimes even develop an allergic reaction to hair coloring. I've encountered women who have had their cosmetics "tattooed on", such as eyeliner, lipliner and blush and I think this is regrettable because styles in makeup change, as well as our taste. I hope this well-produced video causes people to stop and think before getting tattooed or getting a body-piercing. "

Thank you so much for presenting this video! I am afraid I thought Lev. 19:28 was the reason to avoid tattoos. I know a pastor that stated there where no verse saying one could not be tattooed. His lightly given word opened the door for many in the church to get tattoos. Once they got one tattoo they continued to cover there body with tattoos. They want to reach the lost bikers and felt the bikers would identify with their tattoos and felt the message of their tattoos was their life story. What if they had heard the whole council of the Word of God? Would they have still gotten tattoos?
This message could apply to many activities. Thank you for posting it!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015


I enjoyed the colored leaves that appeared recently and how good they looked with this wreath on my shabby chic truck.  

Otherwise, everything is green and spring-like all around!

As I explained before, it is a common sight to see an old truck, from coast to mountain, to desert, in Canada and the US.  They are kept for various reasons, some sentimental, she historical, and others as an art form. Some trucks, like this one, really do work, but are kept looking antique. Whatever the case may be, we are allowed to have them, just as much as having an old piano.

Although this truck really does run, I like it the way it is, with all its dents and flaws.  One advantage to having an old truck like is, is that no one wants to steal it :-). But, as I said, there are so many of them in these parts, that they are easy to find if anyone wants one.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015


It is quite pleasant around here today.

Look at leg warmers and boot socks made from sweater sleeves, to get more ideas of how these can look.

These boot socks are from the original "spats" the ever-resourceful Victorians wore to make it look like they were wearing a pair of boots.  You can check it out on the Men's Emporium site featuring Victorian spats, 

Type in "Victorian Spats" and click images, and you will see a variet of spats. I have a pattern for sewing them, but the sweater method is a lot less complicated and the results are quicker. You can add buttons on the sides.

A sock sign at Hobby Lobby:

Monday, November 02, 2015

The Swing

Long ago ladies found that gentle swinging or rocking was quite beneficial to mind and body. Victorian porches were lined with rocking chairs and porch swings were hung under the eaves.  

This is one recreation that is so integral to life, than instead of paying for an expensive trip to get away from it all, why not spend the money on a glider swing, canopy swing or porch swing just for yourself?

I love the old fashioned rope and board swing, too.

...and so do children. It looks like someone has been playing tea party

and dress up!

Sunday, November 01, 2015

I Chose to Stay Home and Have Never Regretted It

Dear Readers,

Please use the contact button and sent me your success stories.  You name will not be printed, but your testimony is important to everyone. I hope to hear from you soon so that I may add your letter here!

Dear Lydia,

I just wanted to thank you for your encouragement.  You have done so much to impact my life!  It was probably more than 11 years ago that I first started reading your blog, and I don't think I've ever missed a post!  When I first stumbled on your blog, I was a raging feminist, trying to bring some comfort and order to our first home... I was probably googling for ways to keep house- I was lost.  :)  At that time, I was a registered nurse, working full time in Public Health.  Life has changed so much since then!

After the birth of my first child (8years ago), I left my career and became a full time homemaker and mother.  It was so hard to make that choice, but now, I'm so glad.  There was opposition from everywhere, and the only encouragement came from you and my husband!  Now, we have 5 children and are homeschooling them.  We've moved from Edmonton to a small town in Saskatchewan, and we are content.  I'm amazed at how the Lord answers prayers and makes a way!

Trusting the Lord has been the biggest lesson, as Feminism has taught us we must rely only on ourselves and plan for every possible thing... I have learned to trust that God will always make a way!  Any time I was tempted to lose my trust, I always mined your blog for encouragement❤️ 

Thank you, sincerely!  I love your blog, and also really enjoyed your video today!!

Another Success Story:

Hi Lydia,
So glad to read your previous post on being motivated at home and this new post on staying home. I will comment on them both here with my story.

Growing up, my father tried to steer me toward a secretarial profession so I would have a good job when I left home. This did not appeal to me. I loved gardening and wearing pretty dresses. Just wanted to be a homemaker like my mother. Bucking my father's wishes and deciding to take nurses aide training, things were pretty tense until I left home.

Eventually I married my high school sweetheart and in time we started a family.
I tried working outside the home as just a hobby, but was much happier at home. There I had the freedom to make my own decisions and my own schedule. I only wanted to serve my husband and be around to raise my children. 

There were great rewards to staying home: I only put my energies to serving my own husband, not a pushy boss, my husband was delighted to come home to a smiling face, clean home and hot meals, we had time together with no interference of double work schedules, no daycare to pay for, no extra work clothes and extra car payments or ride shares to contend with and so much more.
Best of all my husband and I had time to spend with one another, this did so much for our marriage. Most of our working friends were growing apart while trying to pay for their homes, lavish lifestyles and daycare.

We will be celebrating our 47th wedding anniversary this year. I've never regretted my decision to stay home either. Am more motivated each day to stay with it as there is a new generation seeing our contentment and watching to see how it's done.

I so enjoy the new video feature. So good to hear your encouraging words and your see your pretty smiling face.

Your student and friend, Janet 

Dearest Lady Lydia,

We have successfully graduated our youngest child from homeschool. The most difficult time was when our family was stationed in Germany for six years. As Americans we would be allowed to homeschool.  The other mothers were putting their children into the German schools, so they would know the language.  My children did eventually learn German, though not as quickly and not as well as they could have in school. We were able to form a close bond,  for which I am ever grateful, by staying home together.
I thank you for your website.  I am very careful about my online time,  but I find your site so encouraging that it is a motivator and not a time-thief. 

C in Central Texas

Dear Lydia,

I have been reading your blog since your very first blog post.  What a blessing this has
been for so many years.  I have printed off every post you did and they are saved in
pretty notebooks for me to enjoy over the years.  I have often read and re-read many
of them.  Being a stay at home wife is the best thing in my life.  

I left the work force
in 2001 after being convicted that I was out of my role.  I found that after
leaving the work force I was renewed in my creativity and desire to have a godly home.
I have enjoyed everything from decorating in creative inexpensive ways, to landscaping
gardening, master food preservation, crafting, hospitality and ministry. 

 I found stress
just sort of dissolved and I had peace and tranquility.  I was unable to have children but
still I was a stay at home wife.  The loss of my income was never really felt in that we
have always been very frugal.  I knew in order for me to have some of things I wanted I
would need to be creative..I learned to shop thrift stores on half price days!  I made
menus with known sale items at the grocery store.  Never once did we not have our
needs met.  I am so grateful for my role and cherish it everyday.  

My husband who
was an unbeliever did abandon our marriage.  Even in this, the Lord saw to it that my
needs were met.  I remarried a godly man and continue to be a keeper at home.  Women
should not think they need a job "just in case" their husband leaves.  I am proof that God
will defend the defenseless and provide through many channels.  I am glad I did what
the Lord wanted me to do.  It has been a joyful journey.  - Colorado.

Dear Lady Lydia,

Thank you for your wonderful blog!  I was searching for like minded women when I came across it.  I think I typed in Titus 2 when I was searching. Just to give you a bit of background.  I was not raised in a Christian home. Before she died my mother did give her life to Jesus!  God is so merciful! But I was raised in a home where the mom worked outside the home.  She was a good  house keeper and trained us three girls in both that and cooking.  So from that I fell in love with domestic life.  However, when I became a Christian, I did not realize that being a keeper at home was a calling.  So when my children were small and my husband at the time wasn't making much money a "more mature Christian woman" asked what my problem was and basically said I needed get out into the work force.  So I immediately started looking for a job.  I do not blame her, had I been more faithful about reading my bible I would have discovered the truth! And I never wanted a career, I longed to be home! I went through a divorce, that was very hard! So, then I was out in the workforce full time.  I still did not know it would be ok to pray to somehow be at home with my children!  The desire was so strong! My co-workers use to make fun of me because I took most of my vacations to be at home.  I loved all things domestic.  Thirteen years later I married a Christian man, who is a very loyal and faithful person.  He too was raised with a working mom, and liked that I worked.   So when we started our lives together I still did not know it was ok to want to ask or pray be at home.  By the time my daughter was graduating high school and I would mention it to other Christian women they would say, "but soon you won't have any children at home!"  So I felt foolish.....

But then one day I came across Titus 2, and it struck me.  I mean really struck me!  By this time I was a faithful bible reader.  So I started to pray.  Hubby wasn't yet receptive, and I still thought it was to good to be true!  I also thought I had to completely replace my income!  I was also reading book about obedience to your husband.  So that was a bit of a conundrum! 😊

I kept praying for a job at home that would completely replace my income.  I just couldn't think of anything! But the Lord is faithful, and the company I worked for was pulling out of Idaho!  So I asked my husband to please let me try a small business at home.  I really hoped it would take off so I could stay at home. Well that was just a little over a year ago.  And it hasn't taken off at all!  But we have been just fine with a third less income!  The Lord is so amazing!  Oh we live differently but I can honestly say I don't care!  Instead of rushing to get things done in the morning, and having a horrified look on my face when my husband wants to do something on Saturdays, I go from task to task and get things done during the week , and am ready to do things with him on Saturdays.  And I now enjoy things like cake baking during the week with my grandchildren! ( I am hoping to influence them to stay at home when they grow up!) Instead of getting home at 5:30 and slamming dinner on, I now totally enjoy more involved cooking and serving it to him with a relaxed smile.  I have also started sewing and playing piano again!

Well that was the long way to tell you thank you for the encouragement I have gleaned from your blog!  Keep writing your blog Lydia.  You never know what young lady, or not so young lady, (I'm 55) will come across it and be greatly encouraged to be at home.

In Christ