Butter on my Shirt!

As my blog was sneaking up on the day of its 10-Year Anniversary, I was putting the final touches on my book. Meanwhile, my friend Charlene was dreaming of some fabulous ideas.

See, Charlene’s the one who came up the idea of this blog in the first place. She helped me name it, helped me set it up, and spent hours and hours and hours teaching and guiding me in the beginning. She has been a part of Heavenly Homemakers since before it launched and continues to help me any time I call on her. She’s an amazing designer and creator and idea-thinker-upper.

And so, when she sent this to my inbox and said, “What do you think?” I jumped out of my chair and landed on the ceiling and haven’t come back down since.

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Is that not a shirt designed perfectly for all Heavenly Homemakers everywhere??! Check it out here, along with all the color choices!

Her creations did not stop with the butter. She got out the daisies and the jars, and have I mentioned that I can’t climb off the ceiling?

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Again, you have to see all the varieties of color choices! They are right there on Amazon, so ordering is easy peasy and prime members get free shipping too!

Then, to go along with The Prayer Mugs book I launched in June, she made this:

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See how perfectly it matches the prayer journal? There are several color choices on that T-shirt too!

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And THEN, she came up with this, which can be personalized and used along with your Prayer Mugs journal.

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Yes. You can order your very own Prayer Mug with the names of all of your kids!! I love this so much!!!

Customized Prayer Mug
Customized Prayer Mug
A beautiful Prayer Mug to use as you pray over your child (or children). We can do individual names on a mug OR a grouping of names - all custom printed for you. This is a 100% ceramic coffee mug in 15 oz size. They are sturdy, white, and..customized for you! And the price INCLUDES shipping*! *Due to expense, we are only able ship to US residents.
Price: $24.95
Custom Information - PLEASE DOUBLE-CHECK YOUR INFOMATION before ordering:

So basically, my friend Charlene is the most clever person on the planet and I can’t get over how fabulous all this merchandise is!!

Here are the quick links to all these wonderful new goodies to celebrate 10 years of HeavenlyHomemakers.com!

Grab them now. Put them on your Christmas list. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy!

Here it is!! Get Your “Best of Heavenly Homemakers” Printed Book!

The Best of Heavenly Homemakers. In print! It’s here!

It’s better than I expected. The quality, the feel, the gorgeous cover. But the love poured in. That’s what makes this book so special.

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This book is 10 years of Heavenly Homemakers. Your favorite posts. Your favorite moments of laughter. Your favorite moments of encouragement. Your favorite talk about chickens. Your favorite moments of real life shared together here. (The book may or may not share a large picture of an old toilet out on our side porch.)

It’s what we’ve dreamed of here for a long time, but the timing couldn’t be more perfect than today, November 1, 2017, marks the 10th anniversary of Heavenly Homemakers.com. I can’t think of a more fabulous way to celebrate!

This book is in print, at Amazon, and ready for you to order! It will be on your porch and in your lap in just a few days, at which time you can re-live the past 10 years with me from the time my kids were itty-bitty all the way through now, the days of their budding adulthood.

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I am filled with humble realization of God’s goodness through these 10 years. I am overflowing with gratitude for each of you, my dear readers who have become such a meaningful part of my life during this decade.

Thank you. This book is for you. I love you, appreciate you, and can’t wait to continue to do life with you during these next years as God lays out His perfect plans for us.

I now present to you, The Best of Heavenly Homemakers at Amazon:

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The Best of Heavenly Homemakers shares many of the best posts and a few of the most popular recipes from 2007 to now. It’s big – 161 pages. It’s chapters share the Best of Times I wrote about:

  • Parenting
  • Homemaking
  • Food
  • Homeschooling
  • Surrender
  • Marriage
  • Life and of course…
  • Chickens

Get your copy of The Best of Heavenly Homemakers now. 

High fives and happy hugs all around. Thank you for being you and for joining me here. Your friendship means the world to me!

P.S. If you send me a selfie with your book in your hands once it comes in, it will make my day!

11 FREE Early Learning Tools Worth $100 (This week only!)

This is only the beginning of all the fun we’re going to have as we hit the big 10-year mark here at Heavenly Homemakers. This freebie offer happened to land in my lap just in time!

If you or someone you know has young children at home, you must take advantage of this freebie! You can get 11 Early Learning Tools worth $100 for FREE – no catch! It’s just free. And it’s full of professional pre-school materials! Share the love!

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I included my Kids Character Charts in this free package, so if you’ve been eyeing that, here’s you chance to get the entire set for free!

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Yep, that’s free right now. Along with all of this:

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We’ve got more freebies to share later this week, and a big giveaway coming up as we celebrate 10 years at Heavenly Homemakers! For today, head over here to get this great Early Learning Freebie package!!

Get the FREE Early Learners package here.

Guess What’s Coming November 1? (Besides Tears of Joy, Obviously)

You know how you look at your kid or your brother’s kid or your dog or even your car, and you think, “How is it that you are this old already? Where has the time gone?”

And then all the happy memories come flooding back because when we get into reminisce mode, we can only recall the joyful, sweet, darling moments and suddenly, everything about our recollections seem to only be perfect.

This is where I am right now. I’m remembering this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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So many memories. So many hours sitting at this keyboard. So many ideas, challenges, learning curves, flops, and successes.

4,450+ posts. 1,000+ recipes. 124,600+ comments. Thousands and thousands of new friends. Joy beyond measure.

My dear friends,

HeavenlyHomemakers.com is turning 10 years old November 1.

It started with this: My very first blog postIt is so pitiful that I’m giggling at what blogging used to be and how little I knew back in the day. But every adventure starts somewhere. Mine started with a thumbnail picture and a few hesitant words all while I was saying, “Wait. What does this button do?”

My faithful friend Charlene patiently and lovingly taught me everything she could about starting a blog after God gave her the vision and she said to me, “Laura, you know a lot of stuff. You should put it out there for people on a blog.”

Of course I eagerly followed her divinely inspired declaration with, “Oh. What’s a blog?”

But the rest is history.

God opened big doors that day, helping me to discover my love of writing and gifting me with the opportunity to share my love of food and family.

My kids ranged in ages from 2-9 back then.

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They loved it that I wanted to share all their fun pictures and daily activities with you.

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You’ve watched my boys grow up. You’ve stuck with me as I’ve navigated these waters of parenting boys turning into men.

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You celebrated with me when God helped my youngest finally defeat his chronic eczema.

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You were there the day my oldest caught up to me and we stood nose-to-nose.

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You were there the day his much taller self left for Ecuador.

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And the day he graduated from high school.

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You’ve walked with me through some of my most challenging days, and many of my flops.

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You’ve been my cheerleaders, my sounding board, the ones who have handed me virtual tissues and offered me smiles and hugs. You’ve laughed with me, encouraged me, hung out with me, shared your knowledge with me, and held me accountable.

You’ve met up with me and taught me to love coffee.

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How great is our God that He created this wonderful community back in November 2007? While I sure didn’t know what a blog was then, God did. He knew what we all needed and he created it, right here. He’s such a neat, fun, good God. Aren’t we blessed to be so loved by Him?

So here we are, coming up on November 2017.

Mostly, I want to say, “Thank you!!” Thank you, God. Thank you, Readers. Ten years is a long time to stick around, but I’ll venture to say, “We ain’t seen nothin’ yet!”

What might the next ten years bring in this blogging world? Only God knows, but as long as He gives the green light, I’ll be right here with you.

We’re celebrating this ten year blogging victory with something many of you have been requesting for quite some time. I started this project two years ago, eagerly asking for your input as your vote mattered most in this. The timing couldn’t be more perfect as we hit the 10th birthday of HeavenlyHomemakers.com.

It’s here!!!

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It’s a real book, IN PRINT, and you can order it from Amazon right away! It shares the best posts and most popular recipes from 2007 to now. It’s big – 161 pages. It’s chapters share the Best of Times I wrote about:

  • Parenting
  • Homemaking
  • Food
  • Homeschooling
  • Surrender
  • Marriage
  • Life and of course…
  • Chickens

Obviously there had to be a chapter about God being bigger than a free range chicken, how I fended off mean roosters, how I blackened the chicken on our grill, and well, as it all came together it just seemed obvious that we needed a Chicken Chapter.

I can’t wait for this book to be in all of our hands!!!!

There’s more celebration to come in November as we hit the 10 year mark here at Heavenly Homemakers. Watch for the book launch on November 1, a Nutrimill giveaway, and some super secret fun announcements! While we’re waiting for the big day, I’d love to hear:

How long have you been a Heavenly Homemakers reader?

Whether long or short, I hope you all know how much you mean to me. Your part of my journey is a gift, and I love you for making this site what it is. God is good, all the time.

Grab your copy of The Best of Heavenly Homemakers here.

Some Good News This Weekend, But Why This Might Be the Last Time I Sell Vanilla For a While

You guys!! Have you seen the price of vanilla beans during the past few months? If not, you’ll need to be sure you’re sitting down when you take a look. Yowza.

My understanding is that there was a crop failure a few months ago, causing a huge shortage of vanilla beans. That made the price of beans go crazy. For years I’ve encouraged everyone to make their own Vanilla Extract because it was a money saver and a more pure way to enjoy vanilla. But now? I just can’t. The price of vanilla beans is too much.

It will go down again. I stay in touch with Amit from Olive Nation who has been my vanilla bean source for many years. He assures me these prices won’t last forever. But for now, we’re stuck taking out a second mortgage if we want to buy beans to make vanilla.

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Some Great News for Today

I have a batch of Homemade Vanilla Extract bottled and ready to share. And guess what? I made this batch with beans I bought before the price jumped so high!!! I’ll pass on those lower costs to you, and you won’t have to pay $300 per bottle. High fives all around!

If you want some of this great homemade vanilla, act quickly because I’m not sure when I’ll be able to make more to sell. Nor do I know exactly when bean prices will go back down so that you can make your own batches of vanilla.

In the meantime, I have a small supply ready to ship out to you in time for the holidays! Get it before it’s gone. Enjoy it in your holiday baking or to give as gifts this Christmas!

A note about our prices

The cost of shipping has already been added to the total purchase price, so the amount you see below is the amount you’ll pay. Also, you should know that this is the purest of the pure when it comes to Vanilla Extract. The vanilla beans are of the highest quality.

IMPORTANT: We don’t water down our vanilla. This is strong stuff, made only with alcohol and vanilla beans! I’ve checked other high quality vanilla extracts and the first ingredient is always water. Not this one!

The vanilla is so strong, in fact, you can use half the amount a recipe calls for. This makes your bottle go twice as far, making it a huge value for your money!

First come, first served

It’s fun to offer this to you! Get it while it’s gone! I’ll update this post as quantities become limited.

United States only please. :)

Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract, 8 ounces
Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract, 8 ounces
100% pure vanilla, shipping included in the price.
Available Qty: 4
Price: $31.00
Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract - TWO 8-ounce Bottle Package
Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract - TWO 8-ounce Bottle Package
Enjoy a discount when you buy a two-pack of our 8-ounce vanilla bottles!
Available Qty: 3
Price: $59.00
Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract 2-ounce bottle
Heavenly Homemakers Vanilla Extract 2-ounce bottle
These bottles of homemade vanilla make wonderful stocking stuffers and teacher gifts!
Available Qty: 9
Price: $10.00

Special Announcement: They’re $1.00 Now, and Then They’re Gone

I have mixed feelings about this one. But seeing how it fits with our $1.00 or less theme this week, I think it’s time to do it.

I’ve been cleaning up my site the past few months, deleting irrelevant posts from back in the early days of this blog. I want to keep everything here fresh and helpful. I want to keep my site user-friendly. So slowly but surely, I’ve been going through the 4,000+ posts I’ve shared here since 2007 – updating them or trashing them or leaving them as they are.

My favorite part of this clean-up work has been coming across pictures like these that I forgot all about. Oh those sweet little boy children of mine.

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I could post their pictures for days. But I won’t. The trip down memory lane sure has been fun though. Do you know that my boys were 9, 7, 5 and 2 when I started this blog??? God is so neat. How great to be at this point now – with you as my friends, walking this journey of life with me.

(Of course I’m teary-eyed right now. Did you really need to ask?)

This is a pic we took of our family last week.
The boys are now 18 (almost 19), 16, 14, and 11.

Family at Nebraska City

Well here’s the next thing I need to do as I clean up around here. I need to clean out my shop. Several of those eBooks have been there since the site’s beginnings. Some are still helpful and will stay. Some need to be spruced up and updated. But some need to be gone forever.

This chicken one though. I remember writing it before this site even launched – back when I was dreaming about what I wanted this site to be. I can’t get rid of this one. It’s one from 2007, but it’s staying.

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I’ve finally made the decision about which eBooks make the cut and which ones don’t. It’s all a little bit too much to post here, so instead I ask that you click over to my Heavenly Homemaker’s Shop to scope it out.

The books that are going away, I marked down to $1.00. After this weekend, they’ll be taken out of my shop forever.

*UPDATE!* The new shop is here! It looks so pretty!

Visit the Heavenly Homemaker’s Shop here.

Have fun!

Too Many Emails? Here’s a Solution!

Many of you have chosen to be a “daily newsletter subscriber.” That means that whenever I post something on my blog – which is just about every weekday – you get an email sharing that information. Love this? Great! You don’t need to change anything!

But for the rest of you? I continue to see people unsubscribe saying, “My inbox is too full!”

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Oh how I hear you. I think we’re all at a place in our lives where we want a less cluttered email inbox. (I’d also like a less cluttered house and yard. Would someone please unsubscribe me from the constant flow of dirty dishes???)

While I completely understand people’s desire to see fewer emails, I really don’t want to lose you as a reader and subscriber! You mean a lot to me!

Here are some solutions to your “I get too many emails!” conundrum:

1. Subscribe to our Weekly Newsletter Instead

You’ll still get all the information I post here, but it all comes in one email on Monday afternoons. The only drawback to this is that sometimes I post something that is time sensitive and by the time you read about it on Monday, the deal has expired. That’s rare though, I and do my best to avoid this issue if I possibly can.

Want to switch from daily newsletter to weekly newsletter? Do that here.

2. Join our Heavenly Homemaker’s Savings Club

These emails go out roughly twice each week and they share the best money saving tips and deals I have found. You might want this newsletter in addition to the regular one, or you might want it instead of. Either way, you can count on this email to offer you great ways to save money in your healthy homemaking endeavors!

3. Join our Heavenly Homemaker’s Learning Zone

This one is specifically for those of you who are looking for educational resources for kids. Many of these resources are free!! I continue to have fun putting together Educational Learning Packets to share with members of the Learning Zone. (Right now if you subscribe you get free Springtime Activity Packets.) Again, you might want this one in addition to any of the other subscriptions. You make the call.

Love reading what I share at Heavenly Homemakers daily as it comes out? Continue reading directly on the blog here or subscribe to our daily newsletter!

I just wanted to catch you all up on all the options available. We aim to please!

What’s your preference? Does your inbox overwhelm you?

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MockMill Giveaway Winner!!

Suz: belauvibes@ – you win the Mockmill Grain Mill Giveaway from Pleasant Hill Grain! Email me and I’ll forward your info on for your prize!

What Do You Consider To Be the “Best Of” Heavenly Homemakers?

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It’s been a dream of ours for over three years now to put together a new book (the paper copy kind!) that includes the “best of” our posts here at Heavenly Homemakers. Enough dreaming about it already. It’s time to do this!

Our idea is to put together some of our most popular articles, mixed with our most popular recipes – and combine it all in such a way that it creates a super fun read along with some practical tips and delicious kitchen delights. We want it to be enjoyable for all ages, kind of a coffee-table book that anyone could pick up and enjoy, but one that might also inspire a person to head to the kitchen to whip up something tasty.

Matt and I have some definite ideas as to what we consider to be the “best of” what I’ve written during the past eight years. But you are really the ones who get to have opinions about the “best of.” After all, you’re the ones reading here. Your vote matters most.

There are over 4,200 posts here at Heavenly Homemakers. We’d like each of you to spend several entire days reading through all 4,200 of them, picking which ones you like the most. We don’t ask for much.

Or, since I guess that request may be a little bit impractical (you guys can be so whiny sometimes), here’s a better idea:

Think for a few minutes. Click around for a while. Make good use of the search box in our side bar under the One Child Matters banner (where it says “Search this website). What posts, articles, series, and recipes come to mind that make you say, “I loved it when you wrote *******!!!” Even if you don’t remember the exact title of the post or the specifics of its contents, you can give us some hints like, “Remember that one time you wrote about that one thing and how it made us laugh and then we cried and some of us snorted and then we all made bread? Definitely include that one.”

If you happen to come across a very specific post you love during all of this thinking and searching you’ll be doing, feel free to grab the exact link to that post to leave along with your comment. In other words, we want you to do all the hard work for us. No biggie.

While you’re thinking, if you also come up with a clever title for this book, that would be great too. Otherwise we’ll just call it:

Laura Wrote Some Stuff

Because everyone would buy that.

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Friends, this is going to be fun. I’m incredibly curious to learn which posts are your favorites. From practical to silly to serious to borderline ridiculous – tell us what you have loved the most!

To get us started, I’ll share that the book will definitely include the story of the 2008 rooster attack. We’ll pair that story with some egg and chicken recipes. It just makes sense.

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Let the thinking and the commenting begin! I can’t wait to hear your suggestions!

What do you consider to be the Best of Heavenly Homemaker’s?

Merry Christmas! A FREE Chocolate eBook for EVERYONE!!

Instead of a giveaway where you have a chance to win, we decided to give copies of our What to Do With the Cocoa in Your Kitchen eBook to every one of you! After all, chocolate is a great way to celebrate Christmas, right?

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How to get your Christmas gift from us:

Head to our Heavenly Homemakers Shop. Scroll down to find our What to Do With the Cocoa in Your Kitchen eBook. (It’s one of our very first eBooks and therefore toward the bottom of our shop page.) Add the eBook to your cart. Use the code COCOACHRISTMAS to get the book for free!! This code is good through Monday, December 28.

Have a Merry, Merry Christmas!

227 Healthy Snacks eBook ~ Win One for You and One for a Friend!

As Christmas approaches, I thought it would be fun to give away some of our most popular shop items. Then I decided it would be even more fun if you had a chance to win one for you and one for a friend! We began with Learn Your Letters (and Numbers), Learn to Serve Complete Curriculum Kits. Be sure to enter for a chance to win copies for you and a friend here.

Today, we’re giving away copies of 227 Healthy Snacks eBook!

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I think you’ll love these snack ideas and recipes as much as my family does.

This book contains 59 pages full of 227 awesome snacking ideas.  These have all become our snacking staples, and they are sure to become yours too!

  • All 227 of these snack ideas and recipes can be prepared ahead of time for easy snacking.
  • More than 200 can be prepared or mixed up in a matter of a few minutes.
  • 145 of them are naturally gluten free or are recipes that can be easily adapted to become gluten free.

And how about the 78 recipes in this book?  I can’t tell you how much fun I’ve had creating new recipes for this resource!  From homemade Payday candy bar knock-offs to oyster crackers to hearty cookies and bars to several varieties of crackers and so much more – you will love these simple, real food recipes.  Just for fun, I’ve even perfected a homemade fruit snack (lightly sweetened with honey)!

227 Healthy Snacks

 

Read more details about 227 Healthy Snacks here.

If you’d like to win a copy of this book for yourself and for a friend, leave a comment on this post. Be sure to tell your friends about it so they can come enter too. It gives you more chances to win, assuming your friend will share one with you if she wins!

I’ll draw a random winner on Wednesday, December 30. Be watching for a post sharing the winners of these Christmas giveaways. You’ll be responsible for contacting me if your name is chosen!

Now think of a friend you’d love to bless. Leave a comment here for a chance to win copies of these books for both of you!