Saturday, June 5, 2010

Seeds of a Good Attitude

Seeds of a Good Attitude

    A good attitude helps us cope with what life brings. I felt the weight of oppression in past years while our children were young, during the handful of instances when Dad was laid off. “Here we go again,” I would think to myself. I was scared. Dean was always an excellent employee. But when the economy dictates company cuts, downsizing is inevitable. It took courage to start our home business but I am so happy we did.

    During our earlier years, during those long patient months between jobs, to best mother my children, I tried to keep all traces of gladness from slowly draining out of my attitude. As the sun would rise every morning so would I. “Get up, Dress up, Show up,” was my personal motto at those trying times. Praying about attitude enabled me to act on this motto. Attitude makes the difference between coping and not coping. Counting our blessings is an enormous boost to attitude. Trusting in Providence is another.

    Think how attitude embodies the fruit of the Spirit. By seeking God to work in us a good attitude we are inviting Him to do what the Psalmist so humbly asked: Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit with me.”

     Here is the full photo of my newly finished cross-stitch. Its style is reminiscent of the old Quaker samplers with its emblems and similar to an alphabet sampler with its berry border. I choose the design because of its old-fashioned feel and because of the basket of fruit. Although the chart suggested stitching in the initials of family members I decided upon the fruit of the Spirit. I placed virtues where the initials were to go using a magnifying glass and one thread of embroidery floss over one thread of linen. The rest of the sampler is stitched two over two.

    Hung on a wall of the house my sampler is a reminder that when the seeds of a good attitude are sown, the various fruits of the Spirit are possible.


  1. What a beautiful sampler! It is a wonderful reminder of the fruit that we must cultivate in our spirit.

    I remember years when we were so much in debt, and my husband was laid-off also, I cried out to Our Lord..."how long?"

    But HE continued to give me the strength to get up, show up and focus!

    Thank you for sharing,


  2. Dear Karen,

    What a beautiful sampler! I am truly amazed by the wonderful talent that you have and the tenacity to finish these detailed projects. You remind me of what it must have been like to be a mother back in the 'old days', when there was no television, no computers, or telephones. Time must have gone by at a much slower pace, and mothers and fathers must have enjoyed the time they spent with their families and children.

    What a beautiful idea to stitch the fruits of the spirit into your sampler. Truly a beautiful accomplishment! Thanks for sharing it with us! :)

    Elena Marie

  3. Maria,
    In this day and age it is common for husbands to change jobs or loose their job, isn't it? Thank you for sharing the need to both cry tears and cry out to God. I know that little mention of kneeling is heard of today but times of pleading can also draw a mother to her knees. I know.

    Elena Marie,
    So glad you find my fruit so pleasing a reminder.
    I like to slow my pace down and my samplers do this for me, so does knitting. How lovely it has been this spring to sit in the shade with my needle and listen to the birds in the afternoon while something is simmering in the crock pot. It is exceptionally pleasant even if I only get to it once a week.

    Thank you , ladies,
    Karen A.

  4. ah. a good visual reminder. I need these. I have taken scripture calendars and hung them up, but I need to change/rotate them because I've gotten so used to them, I hardly see them anymore! :)

    amy in peru

  5. Dear Karen,
    I visited your blog briefly this weekend to see if you have posted anything new since you contacted me some days ago to inform me about your "Mother Culture" blog. I was delighted to see that you have photos of another cross-stitch project. Your project is beautiful, Karen. I like the way you added in the fruit of the Spirit. That is a lovely reminder of all we need to be filled with each day by the Holy Spirit. Praying for the fruit of the Spirit daily is something I have found to be essential as a homemaker, a wife, a mother. I always need to gain more depth in this...

    When our children were mostly small, I greatly enjoyed receiving and devouring your Parents' Review Magazine (my favorite home education magazine ever) during the years you published that, Karen, for part of my "Mother Culture." I have made it a daily habit to read from God's Word as well as read wonderful children's classics aloud to our children and also read wonderful non-fiction books and biographies for myself throughout the years. This has been a great help and nourishment to me for many years. It is so true that a mother needs her soul filled so she has more to feed and bless her family with. Also, during the early years of mothering, I enjoyed making some dolls and doing some cross-stitch projects, particularly during a few of my pregnancies when my doctor had me mostly off my feet during the last trimester...

    In more recent years, not only do I continue to nourish my soul with God's Word and wonderfully good books, but I have added knitting. I learned to knit about five or six years ago in our daughters' 4-H knitting classes. I have found this handcraft to be very relaxing for me. It certainly helps much on a stressful day, but I greatly enjoy knitting any opportunity I have. It has such a calming effect to work with my hands this way; I love the feel of the yarn fiber as well as the clicking sound of the wooden needles as I knit. I only regret not learning to knit in my younger years...

    Our middle daughter, Sarah, just started learning to use a drop spindle to spin yarn this spring while attending a 4-H knitting class. I was delighted to sit near the teacher so I could take good notes as she taught our daughter how to use the drop spindle. It was a fascinating lesson that left me with the desire to add this to my "Mother Culture" someday soon, Lord willing. Sarah hopes to eventually move on to a spinning wheel...

    Thank you, Karen, for encouraging mothers in "Mother Culture" as well as in educating us about the work of Charlotte Mason in teaching children.

    Blessings to you,
    Sheila in Wisconsin

  6. Dear Sheila,
    I remember those years of Parents' Review with fondness. In those days of paper newsletters I would have never conceived of the idea of how we communicate today.
    Oh, the unfathomable richness of God's Word. "Oh, for a thousand tongues to sing" in eternal praise to our Savior, Jesus.
    Enjoy your projects this summer with your daughters. You know how I like knitting, too, and hope to share a work in progress.
    Karen A.

  7. “Get up, Dress up, Show up,” is an excellent motto. I wish I'd known it during the many times of my husband's unemployment years ago. I'm afraid I was depressed a good deal of the time. Last time, in 2016, I did much better.
    Be blessed,