Blessing My Man in a Small Thing

Well, I didn’t make any progress on our bedroom this week. πŸ™Β  A couple of months ago, I did take a step forward though. Mike had been frustrated with his clothes storage and asked me to help him. This was a struggle for me because I felt like it was his clothes and he should know what how he wants them. Besides, I had attempted helping him to organize his clothes beforeΒ  but within a few months he was back in frustration and it looked like I had never organized it at all.

~ Lifeofjoy.meSo this time when he asked for help, I made the decision to continue helping him. Thus I decided to just start small. To begin, I emptied one drawer of his chest of drawers and proceeded to round up as many of his t-shirts and such that I could find. I managed to get 52 shirts in this drawer and he still had shirts hanging out somewhere else!

I had seen the KonMari method online and folded his shirts this way, as much as I could remember. (As it turns out, I didn’t really do it that way but similarly because done right, they should stand on their own but I needed space and just squeezed them all in.)

I had determined to keep on top of these, folding them appropriately and putting them in the drawer for him, as they are washed. But one day, I was putting away freshly laundered shirts and was amazed to find the drawer only half full. I wondered where the rest of them went because the laundry was all caught up. It is still a mystery as to where he has ‘misplaced’ them. As you can see, I have found a few more, since the drawer is more than half full currently.

At any rate, it has really blessed him that I fold and reinsert the shirts into the drawer for him and it hasn’t been much of an inconvenience for me at all. Yes, I do have to fold his shirts on a flat surface instead of my usual method and then I do take a few seconds to put his shirts in the drawer but it doesn’t take much longer at all. And it is soooo worth it for him to be less frustrated.

So, although I didn’t gain any more ground in my bedroom decluttering challenge, I did keep up the one thing I did get done. And that is good! πŸ™‚ But I do plan to make much more progress this week.

Until next week, God bless
Michele ºÜº


Rest, Birthday Celebration, and Liam is Coming!

Rest ~ Lifeofjoy.meAfter our busy week last week, we did not do very much over the weekend except to REST! Resting is very important!!! We take resting seriously around here. πŸ˜€

I had forgotten, when I made our menu and bought groceries, that we would be having Papa John’s Pizza for lunch on Friday at the conference and scheduled homemade pizza for Saturday’s dinner. That did not go over very well here at Casa Coates and I had to do some quick thinking. Thankfully I had some chicken breasts in the freezer, because I don’t know very many recipes that use turkey pepperoni and some chicken sausage.

I perused the refrigerator and found not one but three bowls of leftover rice. These weren’t mere 1/2 cup leftovers either. One of them was wild rice but the other two were brown rice. I knew these needed to be used, and used quickly, so I made chicken fried rice. It is always a favorite of Tiffany’s. πŸ™‚ So I knew she’d be good with it. Mike and Sean just said to do whatever was easiest. That is pretty easy, so it was decided.

Rest ~ Lifeofjoy.meAfter church Sunday, we came home and snacked until later when I made San Francisco Chicken. Other than that, we rested some more! πŸ™‚ Sean and Tiffany had three late nights at the end of the conference, so it took a while for them to get rested. Plus the heat just zaps us and it has been HOT here!

In wonderful baby news, Lauren told me Monday that she’s dilated to a 3 and is effaced and baby is ready! Her doctor told her that she probably won’t make it to her appointment on Monday. Woo Hoo! I am getting all excited! πŸ™‚

Birthday ~ Lifeofjoy.meBecause of busyness, I haven’t made Brian his birthday dinner yet. They were busy before the conference and then there was NO WAY during the conference, so they finally came out last night. We had meatloaf, scalloped potatoes, applesauce, and mud pie for dessert (which I will share on Tuesday).

Rest ~ Lifeofjoy.meWe had a nice visit. Lauren and I decided on which pattern to use for the crocheted diaper cover and booties she wants for Liam’s newborn pictures. πŸ™‚ I love to crochet, when I have small projects to do. For some reason I can complete little animals and booties and such but put me on a blanket or something else large and I just can’t seem to finish it. It must have something to do with me getting bored doing the same thing over and over and over again.

Rest ~ Lifeofjoy.meThe same thing used to happen when I was younger and would sight read a piece of music on the piano (I use these words in their loosest meaning). My mom plays keyboard and had sheet music around for love songs and such that she’d play for weddings. On occasion I would pick a piece and tediously read it and learn it. I found I loved introductions to songs but by the time you got to the actual song, the keyboard part was boring and I lost interest. I used to joke that I could have one full length piece of music by stringing together all the introductions I’d learned. πŸ˜€ Years later I realized that I probably would have done well with classical music because of its intricacies; I doubt I would’ve gotten bored. πŸ˜‰ Who knows, I may have an actual keyboard someday and teach myself to play. I do love Vivaldi’s “The Four Seasons.”

Well that’s enough for today. Hopefully next week I’ll be sharing pictures of my grandson! Assuming I remember to pause and take some pictures rather than just live life in the moment, like I usually do.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Safe Books for Kids to Read

Safe Books for Kids to Read ~ Lifeofjoy.meIt used to be that when a book earned an award, it was pretty safe to say it was a good book for kids to read. Unfortunately that is no longer the case. Read this article for more information about this trend. The author states, “All the award winners published before 1960 display excellence in content and literary merit.”

So then, parents, guardians, grandparents, and caregivers are left with a problem. How do you know which books are okay for children to read and which ones are going to have stuff in them you don’t want your children reading about?

That is where book lists and the like become very helpful. There are several books out that are just about giving you lists of books that are good for kids. Honey for Your Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt, What shall We Then Read by Jan Bloom, and The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease are three books good book suggestions for your children and you. πŸ™‚

I’ve listed a couple of websites that I trusted through the years on here before. But I recently found this one that I thought I’d share with you today. It is Wholesome Reads. When you get to the site there is a dropdown menu on the right hand side where you can select a category of book lists. I hope you find this website helpful.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Tangling Again

iamthedivacztThis week the diva challenge is to tangle on the move. I am a homebody and don’t go out that often, so my participation in this challenge will have to wait until later in the week. Of course, any that have visited here very often may probably recall that I don’t exactly do well with adding to posts after they have been published. πŸ˜‰ So I may not actually follow through and complete this challenge.

FBβ–‘1 ~ LifeofJoy.meSo, I decided that I’d see what Square One was focusing on. To my delight, I found it to be B-Dylan which is a thistle-like tangle and a pleasure to draw. Unfortunately, it isn’t so easy to shade.

The Shading Zentangle group is focusing on the same tangle and suggest working on drop shadows.

The WZTV group’s focus this week is Xyp. I have come to terms with this tangle in the past, so I was glad to revisit it.

And finally, pattern-collections focus for the day is Plum-Lei. I was a bit skeptical of this tangle but found it easy and fun to draw. I believe I will be adding this one more frequently in the future. I do need to work on the proper shading for it though. I like it in its most elegant form without any added fill other than graphite.

I did forget to take a picture/scan it in before shading. There’s so little shading I didn’t really think about it. So here is my finished tile.

Tangling Again ~ Lifeofjoy.meMy string was simply the top and left lines of Xyp.

I’ll run for now. If I manage to get a tile done to participate in the diva challenge, I’ll add it here. πŸ˜‰

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº




Egg Muffins ~

Egg Muffins

Last year at the young adult conference at our church, we had muffins, donuts, yogurt, apples, and bananas. By the last day, I couldn’t take any more sweet foods, so I brought two dozen eggs and made some baked eggs. They loved them.

So, this year, we planned to have some egg dishes each day. I made those wonderful baked eggs on two days. For two dozen of them I scrambled the egg before pouring it in the ham lined muffin cups. One day I made a delicious crescent egg ring, which I will share with you one day soon. The other two day I made these egg muffins.

These egg muffins can be made with any ingredients you want or have on hand. It is a great recipe to clean the bits of veggies or leftovers that need to be used.

I chose to use sausage and cheese in a dozen, sauted onions, mushrooms, peppers (red, green, orange, and yellow) and cheese in a dozen, and all of the above in two dozen.

Dice onion, mushroom, and bell pepper. Saute in a bit of olive oil. (Today I sauted it in bacon grease.)

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meMake sure your meat is cooked. During the conference one day, I used bagged bacon bits with the sausage and it turned out pretty good. πŸ™‚

I sprayed my ramekins, since I was only making two this morning, otherwise I would have used a muffin tin, like I did for the conference. Spray them well!!!

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meCrack one egg for each muffin and scramble.

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meEgg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meAdd salt and pepper.

Add about one tablespoon of sauted veggies, and one tablespoon of meat for each muffin. It really doesn’t matter much, it’s a forgiving recipe. πŸ™‚

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meDivide it evenly between your cups, filling about 2/3 full. My ramekins are larger than the muffin tin, so they are only about half full.

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meSprinkle a little cheese on each and bake on 350ΒΊ for 20 minutes or so. (Or 450ΒΊ for about 12-15 minutes.)

Egg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meEgg Muffins ~ Lifeofjoy.meEgg Muffins ~

You can add whatever ingredients you want. I’ve seen avocado, spinach, tomato, and broccoli. Really, anything you can think of will probably work. πŸ™‚

Egg Muffins


  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon sauted veggies
  • 1 tablespoon cooked, crumbled/chopped meat
  • 1 tablespoon cheese
  • salt and pepper


  1. Crack egg into a bowl and break it up with a fork or small whisk.
  2. Spray ramekin or muffin cup with oil, coating the cup well.
  3. Add salt, pepper, meat and veggies to the egg and stir.
  4. Pour into ramekin.
  5. Top with cheese.
  6. Bake ate 350ΒΊ for 15-20 minutes or 450ΒΊ 12-15 minutes.


Until next time, God bless,

 Michele ºÜº

Clean Bedroom Challenge

Clean Bedroom Challenge ~ Lifeofjoy.meRecently Mike and I got rid of a huge pile of paperwork that has been in our master bedroom for quite some time. It is such a relief to have it removed.

I have been meaning to declutter my dresser and closet for some time but I am challenging myself to do it over the next several weeks. I am told that a clutter-free room enables a better more restful sleep.

I’ve recently, within the last three or four months, have started making my bed within the first few minutes of getting up each morning. It helps make the room much tidier and more inviting. I’ve also been getting dressed first thing each morning rather than after they guys head out for work. It seems to make a difference in me being more productive.

I read an article once about how God corrected the author’s attitude about cleaning the master bed linens. It’s a good short read. There’s this other article about 10 Ways to Create a Romantic Bedroom.

I’m not going to keep rambling about it. I hope you will accept the clean bedroom challenge, if yours has gotten a bit cluttered and consider making your bed every morning when your feet touch the floor. πŸ™‚

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

A Week of Volunteering Fun

You all are probably pretty tired of me saying that we helped out in the kitchen serving the young adults at their conference this week but I believe I might have a different audience each day, so I feel the need to say it each day. πŸ˜‰

Yesterday was our busiest day because I made Enchilada Pie for the fifty attendees and volunteers. We even prepped it the day before by making the sauce before we left on Wednesday. It was great though.

I also made the corn salad I shared this week. They seemed to enjoy it. I did realize though, since I followed the directions to the letter, that I don’t like that much lemon juice in the dressing and had to add some sugar to even it out. So, I’ll have to go back and update the recipe.

I also made fresh sweet tea which seemed to go over well also. I think the ‘floats’ and ‘sundaes’ will be enjoyed today. πŸ™‚

(As you might be able to guess, I did not get any pictures taken of the conference; I was a bit busy. πŸ˜€ )

Last night Sean and Tiffany had two of the young ladies over for the evening and to spend the night. We shared dinner with them and an old favorite movie. Mike and I went to bed before they did, of course. πŸ™‚ They made some popcorn, which I encouraged before going to bed. Funny thing is that Mike woke up because he smelled it, only he thought it smelled like cheese. πŸ˜€ It told him it was popcorn and we went back to sleep.

Shortly thereafter we awoke to a thunder storm. I think it was around 1:30 a.m. Tiffany said they went to bed soon after that.

Then yesterday while at the conference a bad storm passed through with torrential rains! The tornado sirens went off. (Living way out in the country I have forgotten what it was like to have the sirens go off but just kept on working. πŸ˜‰ ) Many of these young people had not been exposed to things like this before and stood at the doors looking out for a bit while it poured!!!

On our way home we saw MANY tree limbs downed. In many places, only one lane was usable. We were counting ourselves pretty blessed as we were able to make around them . . . until . . . we got within a mile of our home. That’s when we had to find another route, as there was a large tree across the entire road.

So we backtracked and went around another way and were please when there were no trees or branches blocking our path. Unfortunately, we did have some activity on our property. First, the trash can was knocked over and trash spilled out. Odds are a local animal helped the trash situation.

Storm Damage ~
This is the pile Mike picked up from the yard.

Then I saw the shingles in the yard. I looked up at the roof and didn’t see anything amuck. Then I saw more shingles and a couple of skirting pieces. This cause me a bit of concern.

I proceeded to walk around the side of the house where at first all looked normal but then I saw the messed up area. I walked around the back and saw this:

Storm Damage ~
The piece hanging sideways caused me a bit of concern.


The back had a bit more mess but it really wasn’t that bad. We just had straighten and re-align the pieces and set the grill back upright.

I guess the most annoying thing was the electricity being out. Thankfully there was a breeze and the sun was mostly hiding behind the clouds, at least most of the time. But working outside still made us sweat. πŸ™Β  But thankful once again that the electricity came back on before too long and we were able to take proper showers.

Shiloh wasn’t happy that she wasn’t out with us. We let her out shortly after I took this.









Well, gotta run. It’s the last day of the conference and then I have a mound of laundry to do this weekend! πŸ˜€ I hope you have a good one.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

Are You Stressed?

Are you stressed ~ Lifeofjoy.meFor those of you that haven’t visited previously this week, we are helping at our church’s young adult conference, so it is a busy week.

The article I’m sharing with you today is a good one about how to eliminate stress in your homeschool. I thought it would be a good idea to share them now, so that you might be able to avoid stress in your homeschool or at least be prepared, should it strike.

Without further adieu, here’s the link to the article. Please go and read it, it really is good.

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº

An Off Week

It’s a busy week here with Mike and I volunteering in the kitchen at the young adult conference this week. I don’t have any time for tangling, so I’m scanning in a couple of OLD ones I did in my calendar two years ago. They aren’t my best ones, which is one reason I hadn’t shared them before now.

I had just begun shading and was nervous about it. I didn’t want to mess up the line work I’d managed to get down on paper. πŸ˜‰

Here they are, all three, as they appear in the tangle*a*day calendar.

An Off Week ~

Here is a larger picture of the first one. I believe it is basically Gneiss. I like this tangle a lot.

An Off Week ~

This next one is an odd version of Mooka. It almost looks like worms – gross.

An Off Week ~ Lifeofjoy.meShading that one is a bit odd.

Then there’s the last one which really has some potential with more shading. πŸ˜‰ I believe I’ve used Cubine, Keeko, and Florz in this one.

An Off Week ~

Well, there you have it, a quick post with some simplistic art, that anybody can do. I hope it will inspire you to give it a try because really, anyone can do it. πŸ™‚ You can find the stepouts (directions) for these tangles on

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº


Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad ~

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad

I tried this one a few weeks ago for the first time. I love fresh corn! Thus this salad looked pretty good to me. It is super simple to make as well.

The key here is fresh corn. The first two times I made it with really good sweet corn. This time, unfortunately, it wasn’t as good because the corn wasn’t as good. Oh well. πŸ˜‰

It only takes a few simple ingredients: corn, tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil, lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper.

IMG_3397I only made one-fourth of the original recipe today but I’ll give the measurements for the entire batch in the recipe.

First shuck the corn and cut the kernels off the cob. You can cook it first if you like. I recommend you cut a bit off and taste it to see how sweet it is. If it is bland, boil it in some water with some sweetener. I learned this the hard way!

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad ~ Lifeofjoy.meI cut the kernels directly into the bowl I’m going to use to serve the salad.

Next cut the tomatoes. I like small bite-size pieces, so I do more than cut them in half, which is what the original recipe directed.

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad ~ Lifeofjoy.meCut up the mozzarella cheese and then add the rest of the ingredients. I usually cheat and just use a sprinkling of garlic powder instead of the minced garlic. I sometimes use lemon juice from the bottle I keep in the refrigerator for emergencies. πŸ˜‰ (I have yet to make this with fresh basil though.)

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad ~ Lifeofjoy.meStir and serve!

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad ~

This really is a nice refreshing salad and a nice change from the regular lettuce salads.

Corn, Tomato, and Mozzarella Salad


  • 4 ears of corn, shucked, cleaned, and washed
  • 1 10.5 oz package of grape tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
  • 8 oz fresh mozzarella, cut into small bite-size pieces
  • 10 leaves of fresh basil, sliced thinly or use a sprinkling of dried
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Remove the corn kernels from the cob with a nice sharp knife.
  2. Place corn, cut tomatoes, and mozzarella pieces into serving bowl.
  3. Add the basil.
  4. Combine the rest of the ingredients in a jar and shake to combine. (or if you are lazy like me, simply add them to the bowl but it would probably taste better combined in the jar first ;) )
  5. Pour over ingredients in the bowl, toss and serve.

I hope you enjoy this one as much as Mike and I have. (Sean and Tiffany won’t even try it. πŸ˜‰ )

Until next time, God bless,

Michele ºÜº