Monday, April 12, 2010

Time for Nature, and for Pondering on our Lives

Dear Friends,

A merry day to you, dear ones! Thank you for your comments on our last post~ our children do actually like to try wild foods, even though we've had a few "interesting" experiments that were too tough to eat :) .

Today we were able to harvest some cattail roots, which we roasted along with carrots, onions, and yams. Although they are quite fibrous, they have a nice, sweet starchy taste, and would be a great survival food.

I made an accidental discovery this week that I thought I'd share with you~if you dig up dandelions that are just sprouting up and put them in water, the greens grow in your house and are much less bitter and dirty! I'll be digging up a lot more of them, for sure.

We have actually had temperatures reach into the 60s these past two days, and have been out to enjoy nature as much as possible. We keep checking last year's nettle patch to see if they've come up yet; so far, no luck! We did find a few treasures by the river, though, to add to our collection: fresh-water clam shells, a hummingbird nest, and pretty pine cones and rocks. We even had the experience of hearing a Scotch pine popping its seeds out; it sounded a lot like popcorn! Pine seeds, even small ones, can be eaten for a high protein snack, and are quite tasty, too.

Nature Journaling is such fun! . . .

As is picnicking in high winds! Grab that lettuce before it blows away!

I was asked if I would post something about my conversion story for the way I live, and have been pondering this for the last week or so. Mostly, I can say that I was "saved through childbirth", in that only after being home with my children was the Lord able to whisper into my ear the changes that He wanted in me. A few ideals that would define my lifestyle are: natural living (homeschooling, home birthing, natural healing and diet), and godly, old-fashioned womanhood.

I grew up a self-conscious, visionless tomboy, never quite feeling like I fit in with everyone else, but not knowing where I did fit in. I certainly never dreamed of having a large family or being a homeschooling housewife! Little by little, though, as I would hold my babies while they were sleeping, the Lord would put ideas into my heart that would change my life forever. He introduced to me to people who had life-changing information. Plus, He made it too uncomfortable for me to wear pants while pregnant, so I had to wear dresses whether I liked it or not!

With each baby girl I was sent, more and more I would think about the legacy that I would leave my daughters. I wanted to have them remember me like I remember my Grandma; always wearing a dress and apron around the house, and keeping herself well-groomed, even if no one was expected to come over.

My birth experience in the hospital, as well as the few times that we took our babies to the doctor, led me to feel that there had to be a gentler way to birth and healing, as well.

I can think of a few things that came into my life just when I was ready to receive them : Dr. Christopher and his School of Natural Healing, Sarah ban Breathnach's "Simple Abundance" and "Mrs. Sharp's Tradition", Vision Forum and its wonderful products, and the Charlotte Mason philosophy of education. These were little seeds, planted in my life, that have brought forth much fruit in their own way! I now am confident enough to handle most common illnesses and emergencies; I try to dress and live in a manner that I hope I would not be ashamed of if the Savior came to my door; my children are being raised with the "gentle art of learning"; and I am learning to become more self-sufficient through gardening, sewing, preserving, and using wild foods, etc. I still feel like I have so much to learn in all of these areas, and am so grateful for my patient husband who has had to learn and grow along with me, and has been gracious enough to allow me to do so many things that are indeed "not of this world"! ;-)

I would like to encourage anyone reading this, who may feel afraid of living in a way that is separate from the world, to just let the Spirit of the Lord fill you with peace. It IS worth it, although it certainly is not easy! You will feel a peace and confidence in your life that you have never felt before, even through the heartaches and trials.

I love this quote which I found recently, and I think it sums up so much of my own life's experience~

"If you have attempted to fit whatever mold and failed to do so, you are probably lucky. You may be an exile of some sort, but you have sheltered your soul. There is an odd phenomenon that happens when one keeps trying to fit and fails. Even though the outcast is driven away, she is at the same time driven right into the arms of her psychic and true kin, whether these be a course of study, an art form, or a group of people. It is worse to stay where one does not belong at all than to wander about lost for a while and looking for the psychic and soulful kinship one requires. It is never a mistake to search for what one requires. Never.

~Clarissa Pinkola Estes

It has been such a blessing for me to have"met" so many kindred spirits through the internet; may we all be blessed as we find and follow the unique path that the Lord has for each of our lives.




  1. Oh my dearest friend...what a blessing to have your friendship in my life.

    I too feel so much like the "square" peg in a round whole, but the Lord has been showing me that I am not of this world, that I belong to HIM and HIM alone!!!

    What a lovely post :) You look lovely with your daughters surrounding you.

    I am beginning to enjoy wild foods and eating more with herbs and truly watching how I cook our meals. It is amazing how easy they are to put together.

    Kindred spirits dear friend :)

    May Our Lord bless you & keep you,


    ps: I have a new home...stop by when you get a chance :)

  2. Marqueta it is so nice to get to know you more through your sharing:-) And my Nana taught me how to make Chicordia---it's an Italian dish that uses the dandelion greens and you saute the greens in olive oil and garlic and put a bit of parmesan or romano cheese on when done. Delicious!

  3. Isn't it wonderful that you are not alone!?! I remember at first when I started my journey I felt so alone - so self-conscience and afraid that I was the only one out there who thought the way I do! And I look around me now and I see the growing number of women standing up and feeling that "gentle whisper" you talked about from the Lord. I don't know what I would have done if I had not met so many wonderful friends online who can encourage and uplift - and help me to keep going strong in the faith and ideas that God has put into my heart.

    I am so blessed to know you! To have such a friend!

    Your nature collecting is just beautiful! I am anxious to get our own home so I can collect some nests too - so beautiful!

    I love reading your blog! Have a lovely week ahead dear friend!

  4. What a lovely heartfelt post, Marquetta. Thank you for sharing from your heart the things the Lord has taught you and let you to. I have been pondering more and more how much "kindred spirits" who blog truly help each other. We are truly not alone in pursuing these feminine, godly, homeschooling, natural lives we are led to!

  5. What a wonderful post! I so admire what I've seen of your lifestyle, by visiting you at your blog. I can relate, too, to being guided toward certain choices while holding sweet babies in my arms. =)

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  7. Dear Sweetheart,

    I am so grateful for all of the many things that you do to be such a great example of a loving mother to our children. They are truly blessed to have such a godly woman as their mother to help nurture them in the ways of the Lord. I am also very blessed to have such a wonderful wife and help meet who is not afraid to live the life that she has been inspired to live. I know that our family will be blessed for generations to come for all that you do to help bring up a righteous posterity unto the Lord. Your sacrifices have not been in vain and your efforts have not gone unnoticed by all those around you who care for you and love you so dearly. May the good Lord continue to bless you as you continue to share your time and talents with all of those around you. You have enriched all of our lives, and mine especially, in more ways than you know.

    All my love, now and forever.
    Your husband

  8. Marqueta... this was a wonderful post. It reminds me of something I always tell my kids: Don't be afraid of being a weirdo, otherwise you'll never find out who you really

    Kinda the same thing you were saying, but my version is ever so much less articulate;)

  9. Dear Marqueta,
    How wonderful that you are living the life you imagined. It is so important to follow our hearts.
    I too love Simple Abundance and Mrs. Sharps' Traditions (love the pictures!) We are trying here to live a more simple, old~fashioned life.
    I am so sorry I am behind in my letter writing.
    I will write soon!
    Love and hugs))

  10. What a wonderful post! :)
    It is always lovely to visit you.

    Blessings~ Miss Jen

  11. You're always such an inspiration Marqueta! You really show successfully and happily you can follow your own path. I'm going to look up some of those books you mentioned at the library today!~

  12. Blessings to you Marqueta,
    what a legacy you are giving your children. You know I have known the Lord all my life but really l was not ready to die to a lot of my selfish nature. It was not till I had my girls, was I willing to sacrifice. I still have far to go, but I thank God everyday for my girls. The cattails sound yumm. xoxoxo Clarice

  13. Marqueta,

    Thank you so much for sharing with me and all those who read. How lovely that you are following the Lord and raising a righteous posterity.

    Oh, I just now read all the posts and saw that your husband also used the words "righteous posterity"; it must be true!

    Have a wonderful week, and blessings to you. {Hugs}


  14. I have to say Marqueta that your daughters are lovely! There dresses look so beautiful on them. I just love the way they are around you~watching and learning. God seems to not want us to get too comfortable in this world~so it is good that we feel alittle uncomfortable in this world of ours. I just love the way you work with herbs!God bless,Rose

  15. Dear Marqueta, I read this post the other night and almost commented, but it was late and I just did not feel the right words coming to my mind to put down.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts on how you have chosen the things you are giving your time to. I remember when my oldest two were babies, and I was having to work outside of my home. Most of the other women ayt work seemed to be glad to be getting "breaks" from their children, while I on the other hand cried on the way to work because I did not want to leave mine. That led me to a relentless search to find something to do at home. I was SO thankful when the door opened up for me to work at home. Though having to work is not my first choice, I will always be grateful for a job at home. Who better to love and teach my children all day than the one who loves them most?

    I loved reading your thoughts. And I love the pictures!


    PS -- Happy Birthday today! My gift to you will be a little late, but know I'm thinking of you today!

  16. Wow. Thanks for putting so beautifully into words the journey that the Lord has taken so many of us on. I'm enjoying your blog from "afar". I started on this journey alone, having know idea there were others out there. How precious our Lord is to show us that He has been working in hearts all over. And we are not alone. He is so good.
    Blessings, and thanks for letting His spirit guide your life.

    Linda in GA

  17. What a beautiful life you have made for your happy family Marqueta. You have so much more freedom in the States to 'become yourselves', something which is not easy in our overcrowded island. Have a lovely weekend.Eli x

  18. You keep outdoing yourself! I just read your post, and that is the exact same verse I thought of quoting to you: "She shall be saved in child bearing." I'm exhausted. I simply cannot put into words how great a sister you are. Thank you, as always, for sharing.



  19. I've been thinking about this post some more. I had a blue-haired, red-fingernailed, gold-shoed grandmother that travelled the world and just "tolerated" children. Then I had another with long, long hair, braided and up in a bun; faded cotton dresses; big straw hat for the garden, country hams hanging in the shed and jars and jars of bread and butter pickles. Guess which one I always wanted to be like?


  20. Lynn,

    Do you mind me asking what you do from home? I too have always looked for that option. When my girls were little, I also was the one who cried on the way to work--it was so hard.

  21. DEAR MAMA,


Thank you for coming to visit — I look forward to hearing from you!