Friday, December 14, 2018

Exploiting Your Children on Social Media

I just read this article and watched the news video and am shocked that mothers would exploit their children in such a way.  It is horrifying to think that had I been born at a different time, I could be faced with pictures online that my mother posted of me throughout my life!  I'm thankful that I didn't have to deal with that when I came to be 18 and be on my own.  However, teenagers today are facing it and it's a tragedy.

"The report — entitled Who knows what about me? — raises red flags about the amount of personal data children and their parents are giving away, warning that this collection of data could one day influence everything from which universities people are accepted to, the success of their job applications, and even their access to credit or ability to get a mortgage."


Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Self-Lovers & Money-Lovers

When we look at the end times signs of 2 Timothy 3, we find a long list of what shall become of mankind and it isn't a pretty picture.  How evident these things are today but sadly, they are accepted as the norm!  Notice the first 2 things listed are self-lovers and money-lovers:

2 Timothy 3:2
For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous...

If there ever was a time in history when we see self-love, it is now!  Take Facebook for instance, there are those who constantly change their profile pic to yet another pose of themselves constantly.  If having a picture of yourself wasn't enough, changing several times a week is overload.  Sadly, it is here - a culture that is full of itself.

Matthew Henry put it well in his commentary:

Self-love brings in a long train of sins and mischiefs. When men are lovers of themselves, no good can be expected from them, as all good may be expected from those who love God with all their hearts. When covetousness generally prevails, when every man is for what he can get and for keeping what he has, this makes men dangerous to one another, and obliges every man to stand on his guard against his neighbour. 

Self-love is a close relative of money-love, they kind of go hand in hand.  When all you think about is your SELF, you tend to not think of others and their plight.  You will build your bigger barns and look to your own luxury and never consider that you could help someone in need.  You will have 5 coats (or shoes ladies!) and your brother in the Lord barely has 1 with holes in it - instead of buy or give him a coat, you will talk about him behind his back.  This shouldn't be so among those in the faith!

John Gill's commentary states it this way:

...who only love themselves; their love to God, and Christ, and to the saints, being only in pretence, not in reality; and who do all they do in a religious way, from a principle of self-love, and to selfish and mercenary ends; either to gain glory and applause from men, or to merit something for themselves at the hands of God, without any view to the glory of God, the honour and interest of Christ, and the good of others;

You obviously need to love yourself to love others but you don't grossly over-love yourself to the point you are full of yourself.  Let God be first in your life by loving Him and then love your neighbor as yourself and you will never find yourself on the wrong road!

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Love, Mercy and Forgiveness


I have many that have lied on me, wronged me, falsely accused me, discredited me, smeared my name and so forth, but I'm reminded that although the flesh would've like to seek vengeance and vindication - the love of God restrained me.  Instead, with each hurt, I grew in mercy and forgiveness for the wrongdoer.  If you do this, you will never become bitter!  It won't matter what they say about you, what they do to you...  you will grow in the perfect love of Christ and share in His sufferings.

I'm reminded of the great love chapter, Corinthians 13, and how it tells us that the first thing we should seek above all is what?  LOVE (charity)!  You can have a lot of things but if you don't have love - you're nothing God says!  The first commandment is to love God and the second is to love thy neighbour as thyself.  It goes on to say in Romans:  Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.   Think about that for a while.

Even when someone does wrong to us and never says they are sorry, we are still to have mercy and forgive them.  If they were true Christians, they would follow the Bible and come to you and work it out!  I've always found that those who can't say they are sorry, are not real Christians, they are wolves in sheep's clothing and they will only do more harm to you and others.  We should pray for them as they are truly, our enemies.  They may have the spirit of narcissism, which comes along with a lot of religious leaders unfortunately, supposing that they themselves are God.  They seek their own worship, they are never wrong and they will discredit anyone that threatens their worshipers from idolizing them.  This one is easy - find a Godly Pastor who doesn't humiliate you to correct you, doesn't use his pulpit to slander others and does all things in the spirit of love, and you will stay far from the spirit of narcissism, but most importantly a false prophet!

But what about the friends that believe the lies?  Well, it is a good time that you found out that some people will believe a lie way before they believe the truth!  Or as the adage goes - A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is still putting on its shoes.  Ain't that the truth!?  You will find that true friends will find both sides of the story and pray and seek God before they react.  Anyone that doesn't - count it a blessing from God that they are removed from your life!  God has saved me a lot of trouble in my life by this very thing, He knows how to weed out the tares! 😁

It isn't up to us to seek vengeance.  God sees it all!  Every word, every slander, every false accusation - God sees it all.  It may hurt to be lied on unjustly but we will find our healing in mercy and forgiveness.  We can't allow the root of bitterness to spring up in us and defile us!  That is what Satan would want but we can rather, grin and bear it - stay sweet in our souls and pray that others will repent in time and come to know true Godly love.  Maybe, just maybe, our correct love response will bring them to shame for their evil, we could only hope.

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Families Benefit from Tax Plan

I was playing around with some numbers on the new drafted tax forms from the IRS for this coming tax season of 2018.  It is pretty amazing how great Trump's new tax plan from last year is for families.  It is especially great for families with more than 3 kids but those with 2 kids will also find great savings.

For the typical family of 4, that includes 2 children, you actually will pay NO federal tax at all until your household income reaches $60K.  Then, for every $5K after that, you will pay on average $600 or 12% as shown below.  However, if you go into the next tax bracket past $78,950, your tax increases to 22%.

2-dependent child tax credit households making:

$60,000 and below = NO federal income tax owed
$65,000 = $600
$70,000 = $1200
$75,000 = $1800

If you have a 3rd child, you may even qualify for an additional child tax credit, which means the government will actually PAY you for having that child despite you not paying a dime in federal income tax.  Some may say that isn't fair but it is!  By having children, you are helping the government by adding another taxpayer.  It is great the government is finally giving back - oh, thanks to Marco Rubio who added this child tax credit increase at the last minute before the bill passed.

It isn't all roses, even though you may not pay federal income tax, you still must pay about 13% in other taxes:

  • Social Security tax - 6.2% of income
  • Medicare tax - 1.45% of income
  • State Income Tax - Ohio's is 2.6% on most families
  • City Income Tax - if you live in a state that taxes the city you work in, you pay up to 2.5% of income
  • School Tax - again, if you live in a district that taxes you, you pay average of 1% of income tax


So for a family making close to $60K - you may pay upwards of $7,800 in other income taxes.


*Averages are based upon a typical one income earner, married filing jointly, with W2 wages only and no contributions to HSA, retirement, etc.  Calculation short list: Income - $24,000 standard deduction = taxable income; tax - child tax credits of $4,000 for 2 children = 0 tax owed

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

God is ALWAYS Right on Time!

We had a unexpected situation recently that we had to make an immediate upfront payment for.  It was a large sum money and one we believed was going to be reimbursed to us in the near future.  However, the reimbursement was being denied (which just isn't right for them to do!), and we were left with the lack of funds to cover our monthly expenses.  I was angry and just couldn't believe that such an injustice would be done and then we were left in a situation that could put us into debt temporarily.

In the midst of this anger and fear - I stood up and began declaring the Word of God!  I prayed and petitioned Heaven for help to correct this wrong done to us.  I then did my best to let the situation go and just waited upon God to move.

Nothing happened.  I was getting nervous as the date was drawing nearer and we were going to be short money and be in debt to cover our regular expenses.  This past Sunday I knelt at the altar and asked for financial help.  I didn't think much about it until Monday came and the miracles started flowing in drowning me in blessings!!

It started out with a few hundred dollars and I thought, that's it - that's our miracle.  Then, after a phone call, of whom the caller had no idea what I'd been praying about, begin to inform me that they felt LED to give us such an amount of money and they had received a call from another family member who was also giving us some early Christmas money.  By the end of the day Monday - we had MORE than enough to cover the unexpected expense and then some leftover for savings!

God is ALWAYS right on time!  I don't care what we have gone through the past 18 1/2 years, God has ALWAYS provided and ALWAYS met our needs.. sometimes with minutes to spare!  From providing for my son's $400 a month formula to touching a plumber's heart to say NO CHARGE to us when he finished some work for us.  Always, always, always!!  FAITH MOVES MOUNTAINS and I suppose that the landscape of our lives has proven that.  Thanks be unto God - He takes care of His people!

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

Thinking of Others or Only Ourselves?

You hardly see this mentioned anywhere but we are actually in a housing crisis.  Homes were too inflated for the lower-to-middle class consumer to purchase and rent was too high as well.  All that is coming down as home prices nationwide are falling dramatically.  In NYC alone, it is a buyer's market with people snatching up properties for $20K less than the asking price.  In my area, people started realizing the home prices were going down the past 2 months and are listing like crazy but there are hardly any buyers.  Rents are still very high and inflated and we will see if those come down.

I'm not here to talk about the housing crisis in that regard, I'm here to talk about how we got here.  It is more profitable for a builder to build a large, 2-story home on a lot than a small ranch home that is affordable for the buyer.  That, I believe is a huge problem as we are forced to either buy a home that is too big for what we really need, or we buy an older, smaller, more affordable home that drowns us in repairs.  We need more affordable, smaller homes being built for families!  There isn't a builder that I know that is willing to reduce his profit to do such a thing.

I've envisioned communities with 1000-1200sq ft ranch homes that are $80K, making it affordable for most families.  There just isn't anything like that being built anymore.  It isn't entirely the builder's greed that is the cause, it is American's greed as well, as they seek to live in homes that are much larger than they actually need.  I'm reminded of the scripture in Luke 12 of the man who was doing so good, he thought he would build bigger barns.  Why not, right?  You've earned it, you should have better, right?  That man lost sight of helping others and instead focused on his own luxuries and security.

I suppose you can do whatever you want and live the life you've earned (hopefully by moral means), but I feel that God doesn't just bless us with finances for us to have more.  I believe God hopes we will think of someone other than ourselves!  Again, novel thought I know.  

You can either ensure your own luxury in this world, or you can be the tool of the hand of God to help others in need.  Sometimes God may draw us out of our own financial security to help another - are we willing to obey Him or is our financial security really our God?  It is time to become dependent upon God and not independent on our own.

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Garage Clean-Up

The garage seems like it is the place to put everything we don't want in the house.  I now understand why people have so much stuff in their garage, it makes a great storage area!  I had tons of stuff that we no longer needed that I wanted to get rid of or sell that was too good to just throw in the trash but I hadn't took the time to go through all of it and it just kind of piled up.  I finally took about 4 hours yesterday and went through most of it.  I have bins full of things now to sell on eBay or give away.


I had a 30-gallon storage bin for the outside toys but it wasn't working, so I replaced it with a 40-gallon bin:


Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Out With the Old...

In with the new!  We bought our first home 2 years ago and it is now 14, almost 15 years old.  It seems like it is the time for things to need replacing.  On one hand it was upsetting that the kitchen faucet was leaking and the hose had rips, but on the other hand, I'm glad it did because I love my new faucet LOL!! 😀

Here is our white faucet before, which we found out upon trying to remove that it was severely corroded and installed incorrectly:




This is the new one, which was very easy to install and is way better because I no longer have to reach to get the water stream, it is in the middle of the sink now:




Next thing that went bad was our master bathroom faucet and after finding we couldn't fix it, we replaced it.  The new one has a cool LED light that is really fun to use in the dark - seriously, I never knew faucets would be so exciting.  I don't like chrome, so I opted for the nickel-plated.




Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Helping the (True) Needy

Why are we supporting legislation to help women with child care costs when they should be raising their own children at home?  We should only be helping women who are single or have husbands that can't work - you know, the ones who actually need it?  How about being content with your husband's wages and raising your children, like everyone else does that makes it on one income?  Put aside greed, your selfish desires, your "success" and follow after God's design for women - being a mother!  Novel thought I know.

Save the food stamps, housing, child care costs, etc. for those who NEED it - the disabled and single.  Quit stealing the working man and his family's money!!

That goes for school too - why do we support a socialism-based schooling system where everyone has to pay for it?  Pay for your own!  Leave the funded-school for those that NEED it.

If you keep milking the system and stealing from others - you will keep saying the same ole' rhetoric that you can't make it on one income.  I've got a newsflash for you - God's way works and He blesses you for obedience!!


*Unfortunately the medical world and insurance companies have made it almost impossible for ANYBODY but a millionaire to afford the medical costs today.  What needs to happen is the costs to go down and bring back affordable premiums and costs.  Until then, we have Christian-sharing ministries to help afford the costs if your employer doesn't provide a low-cost plan.

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Today 2 Years Ago..

We entered the Promised Land.. 😂



Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Preaching, Horses & My 1st Song!

My husband got assurance of his call to preach.  He just had to be in the right place, and here we are in the right place, and he is preaching again.  It is amazing how God moves and if you just follow Him, you WILL find that place!  He preached for 5 years off and on from 2001-2006 but never could remember a place where God called him, he had just been told he was called.  I'm glad that he was careful in seeking it out and only doing it when and where God wanted him to and now is the time!


My daughter has put flying planes aside for a while and started horse riding lessons.  I can say that I actually preferred the flying over the horses LOL!  I'm not an animal person, except for cats and I don't even have those anymore because I can't take the hair and smell.  I sure can't stand horses and the smell of the barns.  I'm glad that we can give her a chance to explore all of these interests and she's having the time of her life while doing so!  She is currently in 9th grade in high school and turns 15 next week.


My son is turning 6 next month and he is a very precise little fellow.  He likes things to be done at certain times, routines and he is gifted as I've mentioned before.  He loves to help me cook and be by my side when I work.  He is so tall!  He made up and played his own song on the piano and amazed us all recently.  Every week I'm amazed at something else he does.


I'm doing well and have come a long way.  I just recorded my first song in a studio!  It is going to be a bluegrass gospel album but the first song is contemporary gospel.  It was at the urging of a friend that I did it and I was scared but I did it and will be releasing the song on iTunes and Amazon and my website soon.  The song was written about me, as the person that wrote it said God gave them the song about me.  It was moving to read it earlier this year but even more moving to sing it!  I cherish it because it is a comfort and I believe it will also help many others and that is my prayer!


Ohio is still beautiful and wonderful - it is fall now and the leaves are just beginning to change colors because we have been in the 90's up until the past week.  Life here is blessed.  We've come a long way and its the Lord that's brought us!!

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Friday, October 12, 2018

How to Evaluate Health Insurance Plans


As a homemaker you manage your home, and I believe this includes the budgeting and researching for what is needed, such as health insurance.  I wanted to help by showing you how I evaluate which plan overall would not only save the most, but in my opinion, be well worth the "risk."

Let's take 4 plans offered by a large employer.  You have the highest plan known as the PPO generally, which has the highest premium but lowest deductible and offers copays along with coinsurance.  Next, is the step-down plan, which costs a bit less in premiums but the deductible is higher.  Then, there is usually a third plan that is the lowest premium but highest deductible.  However, since Obamacare, a lot of employers have started offering high-deductible plans, which is the 4th one I'm going to share.  This plan has a very low premium but a very high deductible.

  1. PPO Plan - $9,300/yr premium, $775/month; $2,000 deductible with copays ($30 doctor visit, etc.) and 20% coinsurance.  Yearly family maximum is $12,500.
  2. Plan #2 - $6,200/yr premium, $517/month; $4,000 deductible with 20% coinsurance.  Yearly family maximum is $7,000.
  3. Plan #3 - $4600/yr premium, $383/month; $6,000 deductible with 30% coinsurance.  Yearly maximum is $9,000
  4. HDD Plan - $3,000/yr premium, $250/month; $10,000 deductible with 40% coinsurance.  Yearly family maximum is $12,500.

Let's consider a medical emergency happens of $10,000 total for the year for this family.  Here is what they will pay with each plan.  I include the premiums in the total cost but that is exactly HOW you should calculate your costs - what is it really costing you all year?

  1. PPO Plan: $9,300 premium + $3,600 ($2,000 deductible + $1,600 (20% of $8,000)) = $12,900
  2. Plan #2:  $6,200 premium + $6,200 ($4,000 deductible + $1,200 (20% of $6,000)) = $11,400
  3. Plan #3: $4,600 premium + $7,200 ($6,000 deductible + $1,200 (30% of 4,000)) = $11,800
  4. HDD Plan: $3,000 premium + $10K ($10,000 deductible +$0 (Nothing covered))    = $13,000

You can see the cheapest plan for a $10K emergency is Plan #2.  But we aren't done evaluating yet!  Most employers will give you money for medical bills in your HSA and it varies depending upon what plan you go with.  The HDD plan gets the MOST money from your employer of any other plan as you will see here:

  1. PPO Plan: $12,900 yearly cost - NO employer HSA donation = $12,900
  2. Plan #2: $11,400 yearly cost - $400 Employer HSA donation = $11,000
  3. Plan #3: $11,800 yearly cost - $600 Employer HSA donation = $11,200
  4. HDD Plan: $13,000 yearly cost - $1,000 Employer HSA donation = $12,000

Those are your true numbers to compare!  If you expect a $10,000 emergency, then go with the cheapest (Plan #2), however if you don't know what you will spend or if you will spend any at all, go with the HDD Plan as it is by far worth the risk.  It won't cost too much more than the other plans in the event of $10,000 medical emergency and it will save you thousands of dollars if you don't end up having any medical costs because you are paying a low premium!!


Here is another comparison - take the yearly premium plus the family maximum for each to see worst-case scenarios:

  1. PPO Plan - $9,300 premium + $12,500 maximum = $21,800
  2. Plan #2 - $6,200 premium + $7,000 maximum - $400 HSA donation = $12,800
  3. Plan #3 - $4,600 premium + $9,000 maximum - $600 HSA donation = $13,000
  4. HDD Plan - $3,000 premium + $12,500 maximum - $1,000 HSA donation = $14,500

Clearly, the PPO plan is a joke and takes most of your money, yet it is the most commonly chosen plan - go figure!  Plan #2, is your best worst-case scenario plan if you know surgery or something is coming up.


I hope that helped you all understand how health insurance works.  I've found that a lot of homemakers don't even research this or leave it up to their husbands, who have a struggle to even find time to research things like this!  Help him out and do it and save your family money and make sure you are with the right plan for your situation.

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, September 29, 2018

Day of Reckoning


Many women are feeling the courage to come forward about their molestation, rapes, sexual assault/abuses today.  Twitter is filled with women naming who did what to them for the first time in their lives, as they have been silent for so long.  There may be those that lie, but I believe most are telling the truth, as I know many in my generation were molested, it was common in our day.  You know the late 70's/early 80's when moms worked and children were left to themselves!?  Yep, the latchkey kids.

It isn't limited to workplaces, we can see with the Catholic church that men in authority even in "God's" House are wicked.  And it isn't just the Catholics!!  The Jehovah Witnesses have covered up sexual abuse of children and have finally been sentenced to pay $35 million dollars to survivors!

There are men that think they are God, who play God and think they are above the law - or better yet, they are the law!  I'm so glad that God is pulling the covers off, the Day of Reckoning has arrived.

I'm rejoicing that the hurting are finding the courage to come forward and stare fear right in the face!  I've always been an advocate for sexually abused women and children and so is God!!  I think the world needs to understand what sexual abuse of any kind does to a woman or child permanently!

Thank God He cares and is setting the captives free in a way by enabling them to finally break the silence!

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Wednesday, September 26, 2018

More Thoughts on Kavanaugh's Accusers

I shared my thoughts about Kavanaugh's first accuser in another post, and there have been 2 more come forward since then.  The second accuser claims that Kavanaugh indecently exposed himself to her while she was drunkenly inebriated lying on the floor, if I have my "facts" straight.  The third accuser, which doesn't remember if Kavanaugh did anything personally to her, rather tells of these drunken gang rape parties that Kavanaugh attended.

So.. The most recent lady is the most sickening in my mind.  Here is a lady, who for over 35 years, has been silent after witnessing what she said in a sworn statement, was some of the most violent, sexual abusive acts against many women over a long period of time.  She didn't seem to care for these girls... until now?  Oh and she was 18 and they were minors.  Oh and she KEPT ATTENDING these drunken gang rape parties over and over despite knowing what happened at them.  Either she liked it or she is insane.

However, how can anyone prove these ladies are lying?  How can anyone prove Kavanaugh is guilty?  I say we investigate this and bring out ALL the men and ALL the women that were at any of these parties - should be a couple hundred on both sides.  Let's investigate them for either being complicit in witnessing sexual crimes against women or doing the crimes.  Sounds fair right?

I wouldn't call these women liars because you are making yourself a false witness, how do you know they are lying?  I also wouldn't call Kavanaugh guilty for the same reason.  NOBODY, besides the accused/accusers, can make these judgements and yet they are!!

This is the kind of world we live in, where victims are afraid to come forward and men get away with horrible crimes OR false witnesses come forward and lie about being a victim and men are punished for horrible crimes they didn't commit.

You can't say we should do away with witnesses to prove something happened because for all time we have depended upon witnesses - think about the Bible and the resurrection of Christ - witnesses!  It is about true and false witnesses and nothing more.  God knows the truth.

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Our Busy Week Meal Plan

We have developed, what I call, a busy week meal plan.  This is a 7-day menu plan for those weeks when I know it is going to busy or those weeks I just don't want to do much in the way of cooking!  Everyone likes this menu and it is cheap as well and very low prep/cooking times.


Monday - Tacos
Tuesday - Pinto Beans & Rice in Instant Pot
Wednesday - Hamburgers & Fries
Thursday - Creamy Chicken & Noodles
Friday - Pizza
Saturday & Sunday - Mac n' Cheese w/ Hot dog chunks



The tacos are made from organic, grass-fed beef and on flour tortillas with all the toppings.  Beans and rice is so easy in my Instant Pot and we add in toppings.  Hamburgers are frozen from Aldi with frozen fries.  The creamy chicken and noodle is my son's favorite and SOOOO easy and it can feed all of us with just 1 pound chicken breast!  Friday is either frozen pizza or homemade pizza.  I cook a 5-quart dish full of homemade mac n' cheese with hot dog chunks in it on Saturday and we have enough leftovers for Sunday's meal.  No cooking on Sunday!

Christian Homekeeping © All Rights Reserved.