“Planting” Purity

  I had a 4 little Ferguson’s reader ask me a really great question yesterday, after the Drama post went live.

Tonya,
Today’s post made me start thinking about how to instill standards of purity in my daughter.
Obviously, based on Destiny’s ability to identify inappropriate content in a book, you have been able to address some of the issues of purity.
Would you be open to writing a post of what teaching purity looks like in your home, how you address it, etc?
Thanks!

Great question!

  I felt prompted to share our stance on teaching Physical Purity earlier this month, in the Train Up A Child post. 

The Bible says, If we train up our children in the way they should go, they will not depart from it when they are older.{Proverbs 22:6}……it means I am Intentional in my parenting.  That I am always on the look out for those teachable moments. That I do my part to teach my children the value of hard work, daily duties and prayerful hearts.  That I am to speak and pray those blessings over my children just as the Fathers in the Bible spoke blessings over theirs, blessings that came to fruition.”

  I don’t think Purity is taught like a school lesson.  Although it sure wouldn’t hurt to sit down as a family and discuss what Purity is going to look like at your house.

  I think it is LIVED. 

  I think purity is in our actions, learned by our children watching us as we face the World, situation by situation. 

  It means we pepper our conversations with it, DAILY, moment by moment.

~When you shut off a movie, because it used bad language, you are teaching purity of the mind.

~When you see kissing on an otherwise clean movie and you say, “UH OH! Nooooo kissing until you are married.”  You are teaching purity of the heart and body in a few short sentences.

~ When you see a scantily clad Barbie doll in the toy aisle, you can choose the one in a full ball gown instead, “Honey, this one is dressed more appropriately.  We need to save our bodies for our husbands eyes only.”  Teaching purity in the moment.

~ When your child wants to talk about “someday” with you, use it as a teachable moment.  Tylan said, “Mom, someday I am going to get to go to a friend’s house and stay overnight?”  I replied, “Yes, Ty. But first, I want to make sure you are ready for what you might face. Your friends might want you to watch a bad movie, or look at a magazine that is not appropriate, or even try to show you naked girls on his phone.  If that happens, I want you to be ready to look away quickly, leave the room and call me for a ride home.”  “Oh ok, mom. I don’t ever want to look at that bad stuff. King David did that once……” 

Purity planting in a 6-year-old.

  On another note, ever since we had that talk with Ty at bedtime, Avery has added to her “Future Husband” prayers, that he would NOT look at his friend’s phone or bad naked pictures of girls. 

  I was Purity Seed Planting in Ty, and guess what?  4-year-old Avery’s seed took root, too.

You all, THEY ARE LISTENING TO EVERYTHING!  Make every single moment count! 

Whether we are teaching purity of the mind, “We don’t read books like that….”

Or by listening to only Christian radio or Adventures in Odyssey in the car.  We don’t want them to fill their minds with the sexual words of pop music and think its acceptable.

During Family Movie Night:

 “We are shutting this movie off now! We never use the Lord’s name in vain. It breaks His heart…..”

Or if it’s a movie you can keep watching together, then use those teachable moments: 

“Did you hear that child sass her mom?  We NEVER talk to our parents that way, do we!”

Or purity of the heart:

 “Dating that many girls only makes your heart full of holes, like Swiss Cheese.  It’s best to just be friends until the Lord shows you otherwise.”

Or purity of the body:

 “That lady IS so pretty in her dress, but see how low it scoops? When you have a dress like that, we will make sure you wear a pretty lace tank top underneath it to cover up more.”

  Once you make it a point to use any and every chance for teachable moments, you will be surprised how often they come!

  Limiting your child’s exposure to media and commercials will also help their “Radar” to be strong.  The more we expose our kids to the worlds idea of behavior and dress, the more “acceptable” it becomes in their young minds.

  Even adults are affected!  Case in point:

  I watched Grey’s Anatomy Season 1 and 2, and like a frog placed in water slowly heated, won’t jump out, I didn’t even realize how bad things were getting.  I loved the show so much, I was willing to overlook some of the inappropriate scenes I was beginning to see on a more regular basis.

  Season 3 started and I couldn’t watch it due to a conflict on Thursday nights.  When I did tune in, late in the season, I was MORTIFIED at how trashy it had gotten. I haven’t watched since.

  How did I miss it?  Did the show change, or did I?

  Somewhere along the way, the show became less medical drama, and more character drama. My radar was dulled.  The clanging bells were muffled, as I slowly became acclimated to the filth being presented there.  It took me not watching to “reset” my radar, and I was mortified when I returned to the show.

  I now choose not to watch TV in the evenings.  My time can be better spent editing, blogging or working around the house.  I enjoy the occasional Undercover Boss episode, or the other night, Dale was watching America’s Got Talent after the kiddos were down, and the singer caught my attention from the other room.  But, between my disgust in the commercials {which we don’t allow our kids to watch on the rare occasion they watch something other than PBS!} and the lack of anything good on, it’s easier for me to not watch at all.  And to teach them the same.

  They aren’t even allowed to watch “The Funny Show” {America’s Funniest Home Videos} anymore, due to the sexual jokes and harsh language from the host.

  “Planting Purity” starts with us as parents, setting the example; i/e tilling fertile soil.  This is followed by seed planting during daily, Teachable Moments.  Careful weeding will keep filth out of the garden of your child’s life and mind, and watering with the Word of God daily, will keep harvest plentiful.

In Matthew 7:16, it says you will be known by your fruits.  “You can identify them by their fruit, that is, by the way they act. Can you pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?”

    The “fruit” of Destiny’s harvest showed yesterday.  I didn’t know if I was doing my job helping to plant the right kinds of seeds, or if I had watered enough with God’s Word. 

apples

  But in these moments, in these situations that make us infuriated at the World we live in, we see our hard work pay off and a bountiful harvest to be thankful for.

~T

 

 

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Drama

  This book looks colorful, light hearted and cute.

It is anything but. 

Scan_Pic0009   

  Sweet Destiny came to me and told me she stopped reading this comic-style library book because it was too inappropriate. 

  When I asked what she meant, she told me that there was some kissing and a scene where the boy announces he is gay.  She said she knew it wasn’t one she should read anymore.

  I told her she did the right thing, and after she went to bed, skimmed the rest of the book myself.  This comic style chapter book included several making out scenes with sound effects, the previously mentioned: “I like boys, hey I am gay” scene, followed by boy on boy kissing on the stage of a play, and then to top it all off, a red-cheeked “Where have you been for 2 hours?” walking in on them scene…..

  YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING ME!

And this is a Scholastic book?  And in the children’s paperback section?

  I  know, that not all of you reading, will understand my take on this.   You will scorn me for trying to shelter my child too much.  Or tell me I am disrespecting the differences in sexual orientation.

  Listen up, my job as a Christian, is to raise my children via The Bible, God’s instruction book for us.  It is my job then, to be diligent in protecting my children from this World.

To teach them to be IN the world, yet not of it. 

  That is why we don’t have cable.  That is why we don’t watch regular evening tv shows with inappropriate commercials. I do NOT want them to become so used to our loud, buy it, need it, got to have it, politically correct or incorrect, sex sells everything World. 

  If I become lax on this, then it becomes a part of who they are, hard wired into them as “normal” everyday life.  Your kids ARE their environment.  It can’t be toxic!!!!!!  

  Satan is a sneak, even colorful cutesie paperbacks from your small town library, are not to be assumed safe anymore. I am saddened that this is occurring, and I will be returning this one to the library personally, so I can speak to the librarian about this book being in the children’s section.

  I can teach my children to respect peoples differences, to hate the sin, but love the sinner, without allowing them to absorb that lifestyle in movies, reading etc. I know they will be exposed to this world we live in eventually.  And that is a conversation I’d rather have with them on my own time, limiting their exposure to it, lest they began to believe that making out, gay lifestyle, or even the extreme violence that is showcased everywhere, is tolerated.

  And yes to me, the making out in that book bothered me as much as the gay agenda. We are trying to teach purity of heart, mind and body…this book promoted none of these things.

  I know that I cannot pre-read all 30-50 of Destiny’s library chapter books that I help her select, its just not feasible to do this every 3 weeks on library day. 

  I think the fact that she still knew what to do, shows that you can teach your child what to expect from the World we live in by peppering it in all your daily conversations, give instruction on the action you’d like them to take when they come across something they feel is wrong, i/e a racy picture, bad words, inappropriate actions, and come out positive in the end.

   Our job is to equip our children for this World they reside in, and right now, that is done by setting boundaries and expectations for what COULD come their way.  As much as I want to, I cannot hide them in a bubble.  But I can make sure they are growing up in a safe, open and honest, God filled life while they are here at home with me.

  So, what is your take on this as a parent?  

~T

 

Baked Danish Apple Pudding

  Destiny has become quite the little Chef this summer.  She brought me one of the children’s story books from the public library, and asked to make the recipe in the back.

 IMG_6471

It had very little sugar in it, and we had all ingredients on hand, so why not?
    IMG_6486

  Here is the recipe, not sure why it’s called pudding, its more like a cobbler.

Tart Apples, juicy raisins, toasted almonds, nutmeg and cinnamon make up the flavors of this simple dessert…..

Baked Danish Apple Pudding

{click title to print}

Baked Danish Apple Pudding

Ingredients

  • ½ cups Flour
  • ½ cups Brown Sugar, Packed
  • 1 teaspoon Cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoons Nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • ½ cups Raisins
  • ½ cups Sliced Toasted Almonds
  • 2 Tablespoons Soft Or Melted Butter
  • 1 whole Egg, Slightly Beaten
  • 2 whole Tart Apples, Peeled, Cored And Chopped
  • Ice Cream Or Whipped Topping

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350*. Butter an 8 inch round cake pan.
Measure all of the ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Mixture will seem very dry at first, but as you stir, it will become moist.
Scrape into cake pan and spread smooth. Bake for 25-30 minutes. Serve warm, cut into wedges, topped with ice cream of whipped topping.

Great job, Destiny! I am so so proud of your interest in learning to cook and bake. You are turning into such a little lady.

IMG_6487

Enjoy, you all!

~T

PicMonkey Collage

Parmesan Dill New Potatoes

  Happy Monday! Hope you had a wonderful weekend!  I am sooo tired! Our weekend was jam packed, and for the second Saturday in a row, I shot a wedding.     Here is my favorite shot, because sometimes, you … Continue reading

4 little Fergusons In Print

  God is so good, and He always, always rewards us for doing the hard things He asks.  After Dear Mom on the iPhone went viral, I was contacted many times by people wanting to publish the article in their paper.  Sure, no problem!

  Then, I got a call from Marcy who runs a paper in a small town in Illinois.  She loved Dear Mom On the iPhone so much that she came over to my blog to read some more.  She laughed, she cried…..and then she emailed me.

  And asked me to be the Mommy Columnist for her newspaper.

  A paid position.

  You all, that is such a huge praise for our family!!!!!  

And another great avenue for spreading the good news of Jesus Christ to their 10,000 subscribers.  IMG_6478

  I know that might seem like small potatoes to you, but to this blogger, it’s a big deal!   🙂

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   The best part of all, I am free to share whatever my heart desires. 

  Food, my family, my Faith….all fair game.  IMG_6476

  So they are reading the same things you are, about our life with 4 kiddos, our struggles and triumphs, and lots of fun in the middle of it all.

  I have only written for 2 months now, but I hope that this is something that can continue a long, long time.  

  Obedience always brings blessings, thank you Jesus!

~T

 

7Up Biscuits

My mom made these for Easter and they are KILLER!  I never eat bread without jelly, and these don’t even need it!  The flavor is incredible!

She got the recipe off of Facebook.  I am sad to not have the original recipe creator to credit, when I Googled it, all KINDS of recipes came up.

This has become a real problem on Facebook in the last month or two, these recipes going viral on strange sites, with the originator’s photo being used and NO credit being given.  If you see this happen, be sure to find the originator and link up in the comments.

We work hard on our blogs, taking and editing photos of our food and typing out our recipes.  Our “pay off” is to get to see you all enjoying our food, and coming to our blogs for more, not some mystery person on Facebook whose entire wall is FILLED with others photos and recipes.  That is just poor form, and would be considered riding someone else’s coat tails.

Eh hum.  Stepping off soap box now. 

 

UPDATE: The original source has been found! Woot woot  Janelle from What We’ve Got Cooking posted this recipe THREE years ago! It’s time she get credit where credit is due!!!!!!!

I give you, Janelle from What We’ve Got Cooking’s…….

7Up Biscuits

{click for easy printable}

Recipe origin unknown

7up biscuits txt

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Bisquick
  • ½ cups Sour Cream
  • ½ cups 7-up
  • ¼ cups Butter, Melted

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 450 F.

In a large bowl mix together Bisquick, sour cream and 7-Up. Your dough will be very soft and very, very sticky!

Sprinkle additional biscuit mix all over your work surface before attempting to work with this dough. You will want to coat both sides of the dough for easy handling. Pat dough out, coating again as necessary.  Cut into 9 biscuits with a biscuit cutter or can.  If shape isn’t important to you, you can just plop them down by the spoonful! 🙂

Pour the melted butter into a 9 inch square pan. Place biscuits in the butter and bake at 450 F for 12-15 minutes.


Enjoy as is, these are so good, you won’t even NEED the jelly!   Thanks Janelle, for a great recipe! Sorry it’s been shared so many times without credit to your blog! 😦

~T

BBQ Macaroni Salad

  This recipe comes from Aunt Lucy. Anything you see from her, just know, is going to be amazing!  She is one of the best cooks I know!!!!!!

Check out this delicious Pasta Salad, I have never tasted anything like it…..

Creamy BBQ coated macaroni and savory cheddar cheese meet crunchy veggies in this great side dish!

BBQ Macaroni Salad

{click title for easy printable}

BBQ Macaroni Salad

Ingredients

  • 1 pound Macaroni, Half White, Half Wheat
  • 1 whole Red Pepper, Seeded And Chopped Finely
  • 1 stalk Celery, Chopped Fine
  • ½ cups Cubed Cucumber
  • ½ cups Fine Carrot Shreds
  • 2 Tablespoons Green Onion
  • 4 Tablespoons Purple Onion, Finely Chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Cider Vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon Hot Sauce
  • ⅛ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 1 cup Mayonnaise
  • ½ cups BBQ Sauce
  • Pepper
  • Pinch Of Chili Powder If You Like Heat
  • ½ cups Sharp Cheddar Cheese, Finely Cubed

Preparation Instructions

Boil noodles to al dente, rinse in cold water and drain. In a large bowl mix mayo, BBQ sauce, seasonings, hot sauce and cider vinegar. Add in drained noodles and all your chopped veggies and cheese.
Stir well to combine and refrigerate for 4 hours. 

Enjoy!  Perfect for your next picnic……
~T

Train Up A Child…..

  The Bible says, If we train up our children in the way they should go, they will not depart from it when they are older.
{Proverbs 22:6}

4 little Fergusons

  So, what does this look like?  “Train up a child”

  Well, I think it means I am Intentional in my parenting.  That I am always on the look out for those teachable moments. That I do my part to teach my children the value of hard work, daily duties and prayerful hearts.  That I am to speak and pray those blessings over my children just as the Fathers in the Bible spoke blessings over theirs, blessings that came to fruitition.

   One area I have been struggling with lately, is praying for their future spouse.  I have diligently been doing this since each child is born, diligently like EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. Purity is a big, big deal to me, something I held dear to my heart in my growing up years.  Something I knew I wanted for my children.  Something I wish Dale would’ve chosen differently on.  We represent both sides, saving and not saving.  Our kids will have the opportunity to hear of the long term heartache that comes from sex outside of marriage.

  My prayers of 9 years have been this:

  First, for my child to be a Godly man or Proverbs 31 wife, then for them to save themselves for marriage, by hanging on to their purity for the treasure it is.  To save all the pieces of their heart for their ONE true love.  To allow the Lord to bring them that person when the time is right, when they are both ready.  To choose to court instead of date.  To allow the Lord to script them a beautiful love story.

bride to be

  In the past 2 years of Surviving Infidelity, I have learned purity will not save my children from heartache.  It won’t. It’s not a guarantee.  The reward doesn’t necessarily look like I thought it would.  And as I learn more and more about the hold porn has on our men, and our teen and preteen boys, I have lost heart.  So instead of praying about it, I was mourning the odds of my children finding pure spouses.  If 1 out of 3 teens look and 4 out of 5 men in your church pew look, then its a lost cause.  Right?

  Then the Lord reminded me of John 14:14 “You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”

  This doesn’t mean He is a genie in a bottle, grant me my 3 wishes!  It means that when I pray something I KNOW He backs with scripture, that I need to believe it will happen, and it will.

  “I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him.”
Mark 11:23

  I am asking the Lord to, somewhere out in the world, raise up a little boy, or a little girl, ready to marry my children.  Being raised in a home that speaks blessings, and prays diligently for their children’s purity, for my children as their children’s future spouses.  A family that is aware of satan lurking on the internet, billboards and scantly clad women/men on tv.  I am asking they be raised in a family that is real about this trap of porn, that talks regularly about the importance of pure eyes in the world we live in today.

  Tylan is in Kindergarten.  He just turned 6, do you know that he prays for his wife already?  Did you know that he asks me what he should do if his friends show him pictures that are bad?  You may think that is too young, but I am glad.  It will be hard wired in him to look away, leave the room, call me for a ride.  It doesn’t mean he won’t fall or fail at times, but it means that even from a young age, those thoughts of purity are taking root.

Did you know, that Avery asks me if that Barbie’s outfit is “inapwopiate” in the store toy aisle because she is wearing a skimpy mini skirt and tummy showing halter top?  Instead of telling her not to worry about it, we talk about modesty, and covering tummies and breasts. Saving our bodies for our husband. I don’t think she is too young to know the truth about this.

  Parents, your children are listening to you, your prayers at bedtime need to MEAN something.  Not just thank you for this day, please help Johnny to have good dreams and no bad dreams. Amen.  

  No, think of it as seed planting, carefully tended each night, until you will watch it sprout and grow. Someday, your child will parrot those same prayers for themselves, then walk it out in their lives.

  Do not lose heart, for I have overcome the world.  {from John 16:33}

Praise you Jesus,

~T

Need help knowing how to pray over your kids? 

I suggest this book:  While They Are Sleeping: 12 Character Traits to Pray for the Children You Love

    I have used this for almost 10 years and my copy is falling to pieces, but it covers areas from purity to leadership, kindness to humility, courage & contentment.  Each topic includes several days worth of prayers to read out loud and 2 verses to back it.   You could read it with your spouse as part of your devotions, or include it in your child’s bedtime routine, so they hear you pray over them, these qualities.

 

 

Steak & Goat Cheese Quesadillas with Corn & Tomato Relish

This recipe from the 4 little Ferguson’s archives. Like back in the Stone Ages. Before I knew how to take food photos.  

Oh my stinkin’ word….Where do I even start with these Quesadillas!?

Savory grilled Steak, the creamy zip of Goat Cheese, covered in warm butter toasted tortillas and served quesadilla-style.

Drooling yet?

Now check out this Corn & Tomato Relish that you top the Quesadillas with…..

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Ahh! So yummy!

  I cannot take credit for this amazingness, that belongs to Picky Palate.  She has some super amazing original recipes, so be sure to head on over and check her out!

Steak & Goat Cheese Quesadillas
With Corn & Tomato Relish

{Adapted from a recipe found on Picky Palate‘s blog, she has some great food on there!!!!!}

Goat Chz & Stk Quesadillas

Ingredients

FOR THE QUESADILLAS:

  • 2 packages Steak, Seasoned And Grilled How You Like
  • 4 ounces, weight Herb & Garlic Goat Cheese
  • 3 cups Mexican Cheese Shreds
  • 8 whole Tortillas, 4 White & 4 Wheat
  • 3 Tablespoons Butter, Divided Use

FOR THE ROASTED CORN & TOMATO RELISH:

  • 3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
  • 2 cans (15 Oz Each) Corn, Drained
  • 4 whole Tomatoes, Diced
  • ¼ bunches Cilantro
  • Kosher Salt & Cracked Pepper To Taste

Preparation Instructions

1. Season and grill steak, thinly slice, then cut into small bite sized pieces, set aside.
2. Snip cilantro into a medium bowl, dice tomatoes and stir together. Heat oil in skillet, drain corn and fry in oil for 5 minutes.
3. Stir corn into tomato and cilantro mixture, season with salt and pepper to taste, cover to keep warm until serving time.
4. In a large electric skillet, or in a pan your stove top, melt 1 T. of butter.
5. Spread creamy goat cheese onto a wheat tortilla, top with Mexican cheese, steak pieces and more Mexican cheese to help hold tortillas together. Cover with 1 white tortilla and brown in butter on both sides.
6. Repeat with remaining white and wheat tortillas, adding butter to the skillet as necessary.
7. Cut Quesadillas into 4 wedges and top with a generous amount of corn & tomato relish.
{Or melt some of this relish inside the Quesadilla, like I did for the photo, but we still preferred it ON top, taste wise}
8. Enjoy!

 

 ~T