Friday, November 14, 2008

Making Your Home A Haven: Inviting & Giving

I can hardly believe it is already Friday and this week is coming to an end. I have enjoyed hearing how this week has been a blessing in your homes!

Time with Our Father: This would be a great time to pray over our lists for today, pray for God's blessing on our homes and the homes of the other ladies participating and spend sweet time in fellowship with Him. What thought will you carry with you today from your quiet time?

There is one more aspect of making my home a haven that jumps out at me. We've focused on the physical care and even made it a place that is fun for our own families. Now, it is time to reach out and share this haven with others.

I think this can be done any number of ways - but what I have in mind is to do something that reaches out and something that draws others in. I have just a few houses left on my neighbor challenge and would like to finish that up this morning. More about this here, here, here, here, and here.

A family from church we've been wanting to have over are invited for tomorrow night and I'll be prepping for that today as I will be out almost all day tomorrow.

I'd love to hear your ideas for using your haven to reach out and draw in.

What is on your list today?

It is always fun to hear what everyone else is having for dinner - what are you serving tonight?

Here's my plan for today:

Up and dressed; sitting at the kitchen table by 7am for Quiet Time
Littles up; fed; dressed
Deliver brownies
Visit Daddy at work with treats
Prep for dinner tomorrow night
Plan shopping needs for tomorrow
Dinner: Emily requested chicken, cheese and applesauce - I think I'll add a vegetable and accommodate her request!
Shoe Boxes (note: here's a fun coloring page for littles)

I also need to clear my kitchen counter again - can anyone else relate!? A clear space just seems to invite things being placed on it!

I would love to hear what you are planning for the day. If you are able or interested - please take before and after pictures and tell us about your day! I'll be posting my update later today on how our day went. Please add your link (directly to your post, please) or comment so we can visit and encourage one another. Let's also be diligent in praying for one another during this week. I look forward to hearing from you!


Unknown said...

Good Morning!Up early again with pregnancy congestion and having to go to the bathroom! :P HEEHEE! Today, our family will be going to homeschool group in the morning, I will be shopping with 1 (or 2) of my littles, while dh takes the other...then its home to pick up and make dinner for my parents and sister who are coming tonight! I haven't had them over in a long time!Have a great Friday!

Anonymous said...

I love a clean kitchen counter. I cannot start cooking until the surfaces are clean. Those look like candy cane pillows on you counter, are they?
Hope you have a great day!

Stephanie said...

Our Friday routine is to have family night - pizza and a movie. For me, I am able to enjoy our relaxing evening more because I'm not trying to figure out what to make (now what movie we are going to watch is a different story). :)

I have been thoroughly enjoying these posts this week - they have gotten me up and moving on several projects (even though I haven't been photographing to follow along). Thank you. :)

Sarah said...

I find the Inviting part the hardest! I have challenged myself to have more people over, because I DO enjoy it so much!!!

Thanks for hosting this challenge this week!!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks again for this week, Monica! It has been a real blessing for my home and family. I don't know if I would have taken the initiative on my own...I'm guessing not. When my husband comes home, he'll be pleasantly surprised to see what's been done! I'll look forward to next time...and to learning more on your blog, now that I've found you! :-) Have a great weekend enjoying your tidy, clean, cared for, fun, inviting and giving home!

Anonymous said...

We're a little behind your schedule - last night my husband and I cleaned the bathroom and kitchen, as well as straightened up the living room and hallway.

Today is my last day of work so tonight is our family fun night! We're going to turn on our gas fireplace and play games in the living room to celebrate. I'm so excited, and am really enjoying knowing that I get to come home to a clean house tonight!

Tomorrow night we're getting a babysitter and we'll completely organize our budget and finances (I think organized finances are a huge part of the haven).

Next week we're having people over next Friday night as the giving and sharing part :-)

Thanks so much for these posts; I look forward to reading about the rest of your week!

Nicole said...


I just wanted to say that i followed the link from The 50's Housewife and while I came into the week a little late to participate, your post about being up and at the table to be in God's Word at 7am has encouraged me to do the same. That's something I've been struggling with the past few months, and we all know that the most important thing in order to be a good wife and homemaker is to be abiding in Christ, and you helped a sister do that this week. So many thanks!

(And *love* the blog!)

In Christ,


Melody said...

I have the same issue with my kitchen counter or any flat surface for that matter. :) Part of my problem is that the kitchen gets used to much that things just get put on the counter in there. Good luck with your plans for the day.

Michelle said...

Thanks so much for hosting. This has been great for me. It is very motivating to know others are going through the same routines.

Unknown said...

I, too, have a hard time inviting people. I love the idea of having people into my home, and I love hosting, so I need to work on that a bit :)

My hubby is a Youth Pastor, so we often have groups of teenagers in our home, but they just don't seem to appreciate the effort that goes into homemade cookies and hot chocolate ;)

Tomorrow, a couple from church actually invited us over for lunch and I made a homemade thank you gift for them today while my daughter was napping!

Mrs. Pear said...


I have enjoyed the series very much. And while I have not kept up, it did help me get going this week. We were knocked flat by issues in life (details at my blog if you are wondering), and are just starting to feel like we are maybe getting our feet underneath us again.

So I appreciated the motivation to just keep trying.

Kimberly said...


Thank you so much for the challenge this week and opening up your home and challenges to us. I just came across your blog for the first time on Monday. I'm new to the blogging world. I have really enjoyed every bit of your site.

I am also a homeschooling mom with 3 little ones age 4 and under. Keeping my home a haven has always been a struggle for me. Kitchen counters - I seem to have lost them - can't remember the last time I saw them. Some of your ideas and encouragement this week have been just what I needed to get things back under control. I have a lot left to do but I'm taking it one day at a time. Your before and after pictures were very inspiring. Thank you for being so honest.

I love that you share so much of your life through your blog. What a great treasure you are creating for your children with all the pictures and memories preserved. It has been a great encouragement and motivator to me this week. I hope you do this challenge again - I need it once a month! I intend to keep going with the challenge on my own.

This week I've been able to get up earlier and use your suggestions for creating my list and praying over it - having the physical list that was deliberately planned with God instead of the "mental fly by the seat of my pants" list has made it so much easier for me to things accomplished and feel good about getting it done. Great timing too with all the guests the holidays bring in. Hopefully I'll be able to get the clutter under control and keep it that way before the first wave of guests come through. I made another list of rooms I've conquered and those are the rooms I go through each night after the kids go to bed and make sure they are still conquered.

For our FUN: Last night we had a Christmas Party with the kids to do their shoeboxes for OCC. We made gingerbread cookies, listened to Christmas music, put a fire in the fireplace, and worked on our boxes. I let the girls watch the OCC video on-line so they could get an idea on what these boxes were for. Then the girls made some beaded necklaces for their shoebox recipients. We took pictures of them with their boxes and made cards to send in the box. We had a great time.

I really like your suggestions for giving and inviting – my Friday was too busy for me to participate in that for today but I’ll definitely but it on the list for another day.

And for dinner tonight - hubby is home early tonight and we've all had a stressful and hectic day so we are going to surprise the kids with a trip to their favorite restaurant when they wake up from their naps.

Thanks again for all you put into this. Sorry for the long comment today. I haven’t had time to comment all week so I saved it up for today. I hope you have a great weekend and I look forward to seeing what comes next.

Laine said...

Sorry so late in posting, better late than never I suppose!

Lisar said...

Hi Monica, I wanted to thank you so much for hosting this past week in getting us to make Havens out of our homes....I have enjoyed participating and have been really blessed by your scripture verses and prayers and for your sharing of your life with the rest of us...I am not able to participate much in today's activities as I have other "stuff" happening...but will certainly be amking it a priority to make sure that my home is welcoming to all who visit....God Bless You and your family. Lisa

The Vintage Rose said...

Just saying a quick hello from Australia