Friday, April 25, 2014

Believing Is More Than A Choice

Cecil & Lisa Paxton
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by Cecil Paxton

Heb 11:6 KJV “But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.”

Believing is more than a choice:

Believing is not an option but a must. One of the things that I have discovered in the area of believing in ministering to so many people over the years is that most believers do not fully understand believing. Most people think that believing is something they choose to do and because they are choosing to believe they think they believe. The truth is that believing is more than a choice. Choosing to believe is just the beginning of the process to believe.

True believing is the belief that is in the heart of man. The way our relationship with God began through Jesus Christ involved man believing in the heart and confessing with our mouth what our heart believed (Romans 10:9-10).With God, when our heart backs up what our mouth says then there are spiritual results.

Abraham is an example of a person who truly believed. In Romans 4 verse 17 we find what was at the root of why Abraham was successful in believing. His belief was in the person who made the promise.

I believe that we have to come to fully know the person behind the promise—His nature, His character, and His love. This revelation is foundational for our heart being guarded to the place that we do not allow the external communication through our five senses coming from this natural realm that we live in to dominate our heart. If we do not know the person behind the promise in a moment of crisis in life we will choose the beliefs that come from ourselves.

The result is that we will exalt our beliefs over the Word of God. The unique thing about unbelief is that it is always about us. We exalt what we be- lieve about the problem in the imagination of our heart as we meditate on the problem. The end result is we end up producing a belief or beliefs in the problem which the Bible calls unbelief.

Believing involves a process:

Abraham did not pop out of his mother’s womb perfect in all of his ways and change his own diaper. Change is a process both in the good and in the bad. In life you will either become convinced in your heart beliefs in the good or be convinced of the bad in your believing. Abraham was “strengthened in faith” because he did not consider the problem nor allow it to produce unbelief in his heart.

Instead, he was constantly considering the promise which resulted in him being constantly strengthened in his faith. Believing is when your heart is fully persuaded in the promise and your heart will be fully persuaded if you are constantly considering the promise in the Word of God.

When the promise becomes more real in your heart than the problem then the result of this process is you really believe in your heart. Now your heart has become fully persuaded and there is a continual strengthening in your faith as more and more revelation of the promise is opened up to you by the Holy Spirit.

True believing involves replacing the problem with the promise so that your heart is prepared to receive what has already been given to us in Christ Jesus. A good example would be a person in an altar call coming to receive prayer whose heart is fully persuaded. That person doesn’t make the person praying for them responsible for getting them healed. No! They pull the anointing out of people who pray as they believe that they are free and the problem can’t stay because they are healed.

When your heart becomes full of the goodness of God you will be like a magnet constantly attracting good and you will just simply disown bad as it does not belong to you in Christ.

Mr. Bud Survives The Crimes

by Donna L. Watkins

When we lived in Alabama we had some wild Redbud trees growing in our woods. They were the delight of Springtime along with the Dogwoods. When we moved here to Virginia, we didn't have any on the property or even in the acres of woods behind us growing wild. After a few years we decided to plant one in 2004. We like to name our trees, so we called him Mr. Bud.

Surely the deer hidden in the brush somewhere nearby rejoiced with us as we planted it. For they chomped on it regularly. Not only did they eat the branches, twigs and leaves, they also gnawed on the trunks. For such a small precious and delicate tree it was a brutal and continual attack over the span of four years. We thought it would "age" and not taste as good to them and they would stop. That's what happened with our peonies and several other bushes they enjoyed for awhile and then left alone.

We garden for wildlife so we weren't angry with the deer doing what they naturally do. We moved into their habitat so we had to learn what worked and didn't work if we wanted to enjoy a particular plant that might not survive in this "hungry deer" environment.

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As you can see from this photo taken after it had been protected and got to grow a bit, the damage of the deer is still evident in the trunk (on the left side) that is all eaten out and seemingly dead, but it supports the main part of the tree, and the other trunk is one that sprouted out on its own. What courage and determination! This reminds me of some of the words Jesus spoke in His Sermon on the Mount:

"You have heard that it was said, 'An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.' But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take away your tunic, let him have your cloak also." (Matthew 5:38-40)

Finally in 2009 we decided to buy some chicken fencing to make circle "cages of protection" for not only Mr. Bud, but for a Hydrangea bush, Rose of Sharon, and another Redbud that was coming up. It worked well since it was a silver color and you couldn't even tell it was there when you looked from the windows of the house.

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As you can see the deer had certainly kept Mr. Bud from any growth since this is what was left of him when he had been in the ground for over four years. He still has the one main trunk and not many leaves, but each year he would come out with a beautiful display of leaves but no flower buds. The tree blooms on last season's growth and it never had any of that left behind. But now it was to be encircled with protection as God is faithful to protect us when we surround ourselves with His Word and the reality of His love for us.

"But the Lord is faithful; he will strengthen you and guard you from the evil one." (2 Thessalonians 3:3)

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After four more years of prayer, a lot of encouraging talk, and speaking visions of great beauty over Mr. Bud, when Spring came in 2013 I saw one branch that had buds on it and I was so gloriously happy. Not much to shout about, but considering what the tree had been through it was a grand delight for the eyes. Mr. Bud was stepping out. He had been able to see the word pictures I spoke over him.

Oh, so you don't think plants respond to words? The fig tree that Jesus spoke to certainly responded. And there's a ton of scientific evidence that plants are very much in tune with their environment. I remember one such account I had read in a book and I did find it online so I will include it here:

Cleve Backster is a scientist, who following World War II served with the US Counter Intelligence Corps and became a polygraph specialist with the CIA where he instituted their still active polygraph program. Backster decided to create a serious crime in the plant world. He chose two large plants that were placed adjacent to each other. One was to be murdered. The other was left to witness the crime.

Six of the research assistants in his lab drew lots to see who would be the murderer. One of the slips of paper provided directions as to how the murder should proceed. The five other students left the room and the “murderer” ripped the plant out of its pot and tore the leaves to shred.

Backster re-entered the room, attached his polygraph galvanometer to the surviving plant and then asked the students to enter the room one at a time. There was no response on the graph paper until the perp – the “murderer” entered the room. At that moment, the recording needle went into convulsive oscillations on the graph paper and the plant seemed to recognize the guilty party.

What did it recognize though? Certainly not the color of hair, clothing, facial features or even the guilty party’s expectations of being caught. Again, it is probably what Backster calls primary perception. While no one could say for certain, but I suspect it could be information from the implicate order, or the energy sea of consciousness that we are all bathed in and thereby connected to each other and in some mysterious way every living thing in our world – plant, animal and human.

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As you can see by 2013 Mr. Bud had grown into a beautiful tree and the second trunk was now very evident. He would produce a wonderful crown of green leaves, but nothing other than the little bunch of buds that we saw in the Spring.

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However this year, 2014, we were totally shocked to look out the window one morning and see the faint color of pink seemingly surrounding the branches. I wondered if I was simply seeing what I had visualized so often as I waited year after year for Mr. Bud to be able to bloom.

It was true, he had finally seen himself as I had seen him and there he was getting ready to produce a grand display of that electric pink color in the midst of our front garden.

What a delight it has been. I thought it only appropriate that his story should be told. We can all find our way to blooming in life no matter the tough circumstances that surround and attack us. We can be victorious over the Evil One. We can overcome because Jesus overcame it all. He said, "It is finished."  The devil has no power over us unless we give in to his deceitful bribes.

Take your victory in Christ and "take His yoke upon you so that you can have rest for your souls." (Matthew 11:29)  "Remain in Him, as He also remains in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Him." (John 15:4)

And a final picture of victory for Mr. Bud is this one in April 2015. 

Rejoice!  Rejoice!

Medical Journal Classifies Fluoride As A Neurotoxin

A ground breaking publication in one of the top main-stream medical journals [Lancet] has now added six additional substances into its classification of neurotoxicants, and one of them is fluoride.

Fluoride is commonly used in dental products, and still remains as an additive in the drinking water supply of numerous communities all over the world.

Although activism has been successful in removing it in many countries, cities and communities, some still remain who have yet to take action.  Read more.

Soldier Beetles Are Pollinators

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Mating Soldier Bugs on Green Coneflower

You usually think of pollinators coming in the form of some kind of bee, flies, bat, butterfly or moths.

Let's add the Soldier Beetle.  There are some really cool beetles so keep your eyes open for the beneficials.

Check out this cool article by Loret T. Setters along with her beautiful photos.  This is one beetle that will be easy to identify in your garden.

Read the article.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Hard Hearts

MATTHEW 13:14-23

Matthew 13:15, "For this people's heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them."

The word "waxed" means "to become gradually more intense or to increase" and shows that this condition of the heart is not something we are born with or that strikes us suddenly. It has to be nurtured over a prolonged period of time. This is why we should not violate our conscience, even in small things. Guarding our conscience will keep us sensitive to God and will stop our hearts from becoming hardened. If we will stay faithful to God, even in the small things, then we will be faithful in the more important things also.

Keeping the commandments doesn't affect God's willingness to love us, but it affects our awareness of how much He loves us. If we live in sin, our conscience becomes defiled and it condemns us. It's not God condemning us, but our conscience. God still loves us.

John was speaking of this same thing in 1 John 3:20, when he said, "For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things." However, as far as this earthly life goes, our awareness of God's love is everything. Therefore, we must keep Satan from blinding us to the love of God.

The most effective way of doing this is to give no place to the devil through sin. John went on to say in 1 John 3:21, "Beloved, if our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God." Holiness is essential in keeping our hearts assured of the love of God (1 Jn. 3:19).

It's the nature of a Christian to walk in the light and not in darkness. When you are rightly informed of who you are and what you have in Christ, holiness just naturally flows out of you. That's your nature.

Visit Andrew's Website.

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America's Top 50 Worst Charities

Tampa Bay Times has a report on the 50 worst charities, ranked by how much of the contributions are blown into soliciting costs.  These figures were assessed through the latest 10 years of federal tax filings.

God put within us a desire to give, to come to the aid of those less fortunate, but we need to be careful about who we give to so that we can be considered a good steward of the finances God entrusts to us.

Recognize any place you've contributed to?  Hopefully not.  Most of these use telemarketing to get their funds.  It's incredible to me that anybody would give over the telephone, especially to organizations they probably never heard of prior to the call.  We don't even let the person get their written script stated before saying, "Per the law, I'd like to be removed from your calling list.  We do not contribute to organizations that use telemarketing.

Consider some of these reportings:

Organization (% of contribution actually spent on direct cash aid)

Kids Wish Network (2.5%)
Cancer Fund of America (.9%)
Children's Wish Foundation Int'l (10.8%)
American Breast Cancer Foundation (5.3%)

Read the entire article.

Recover From Germ Phobia

by Steven Horne 

There are two theories out there about germs and disease, not just one.

The first theory says that says germs cause disease. This “germ theory” was advanced by Louis Pasteur, and it’s become so popular most people accept it as fact.

The second theory says that germs attack weakened tissue and that if tissue is healthy there is no breeding ground for infection.  This theory was advanced by a contemporary of Pasteur named Antoine Beauchamp and is known as the biological terrain theory.  Read the entire article.

Bathing Pets at Home

Video by Dr. Sarah

This month’s episode of Pet Talk with Dr. Sarah is for the procrastinators, the surprised and … basically anyone with a companion animal who has a dirty coat.

Maybe your spouse has invited some co-workers over for dinner. Or maybe, your in-laws have announced they’ll be staying with you next week. Perhaps your regular groomer unexpectedly left town.

Whatever the reason, you have an immediate and pressing need to make sure your pup is looking – and smelling – her absolute best. No matter the reason, a bath at home could offer the perfect solution. And Dr. Sarah is on-hand to show you exactly how it’s done.

If you want to know the tricks to make a dog’s coat feel luxurious, totally shiny and clean, watch this episode of Pet Talk now

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Newsletter - 4/15/14

View This Newsletter On the Website.

""I love to think of nature as an unlimited broadcasting station, through which God speaks to us every hour if we will only tune in." -- George Washington Carver

Hello Dear Friends!

Donna and Benjamin - 2/23/82
I've had so many comments about y'all enjoying the old photos of me ... or should I say, the younger photos of me.  I am still working back through all my print photos and scanning them in to put them on digital (CDs and DVDs).  It's been a nice winter distraction as it was last winter.

We celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary on April 9.  I remember years back meeting somebody that had been married for 25 years and I thought how ancient that sounded.  We had an Asian lunch and went down memory lane for most of the day thinking about the hours before, during and after the wedding ... and then our honeymoon in Quebec City, Canada.

I'm going to be doing a post on the subject of "America's Worst Charities" but it won't be out before this newsletter goes, so here's a link if you'd like to be sure YOU are not giving to charities that may be only using 3% of what's given toward the actual cause.  You might be surprised to see what's on this Top 50 list.  We've always used websites to check out a new place we were considering  giving to.  The websites we use are included on this web page also on the left side.  Check out America's Worst Charities.

The daytime temps have been in the 60's pretty regular now and I have so enjoyed spending time with God outside on the deck and screened porch.  Getting to look up at the amazing blue sky with the bare trees is a glorious sight, although I will be totally thrilled to have the leaves back on the trees.  They are budding up.

None of our plants have been progressing rapidly with the colder nighttime temperatures.  Last week we had some nights below freezing.  It seems that we've already "lost" part of our Springtime, but getting time outdoors for even part of a day is absolutely wonderful to me!  And it is more consistently warmer this week.

We brought out the hummingbird feeders since the Ruby-throated Hummingbird arrives in mid-April here in Central Virginia.  It's always exciting to see "our" hummingbirds return.   Want to know when they will arrive in your area?  This hummingbird migration website has each state listed on this page.  If you get more than one species it tells you when each will arrive.  Here we only get the Ruby-throated.  The Rufous has been seen during migration, but we've never seen it on our property.

With the cooler weather the Yellow-rumped Warblers had been staying around longer than usual.  They arrive in flocks so it's a pretty sight to see all the patches of yellow in a drab winter landscape.  These birds are sometimes called Butterbutts because of their bright yellow patch above the tail feathers.  They eat wild seeds but when scarce they will come to feeders for sunflower seeds, raisins, peanut butter, and suet.

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Rear View of Yellow-rumped Warbler on Deck Rail
Suet is what they really enjoy here at Bluebird Cove, but we see them on the sunflower feeders now and then also.  They will head north to breed so we won't be seeing them much longer.  Read more about Yellow-rumped Warblers.

We have the White-throated Sparrows, with their painted by God look of wonder, with us all Winter and about this time of year the Chipping Sparrows (Photo at Occoneechee State Park in Clarksville, VA) return and the White-throats take off.  It's always an interesting trade off like there's some formal agreement between them.

The hawk has been lunching at our place and that's a real hard fact of nature that I don't take too well.  I don't mind hawks getting food, but not on my property.  It reminds me of the bait and kill method of hunting where hunters put food and salt licks out to attract the deer and then just shoot them off. 

I was on the screened porch one day and heard all the birds scream out their alarm call while they flew for protective covering.  The doves have a flight speed of up to 55mph but they are certainly no match for a hawk.  I thought the hawk may have taken one of the doves since I did see only one flying away.

They must've flown above the house and then doubled back around because some bird hit the screen on the porch and you could hear it drop.  It was all a flash and I ran to go outside so that the hawk wouldn't get the downed dove, but it had already swooped in and taken it from where it had fallen I guess because it wasn't there.

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Mourning Dove on Deck
Many doves fall prey to hunting (allowed in many states) and predation by hawks, such as the Cooper's Hawk that stakes out backyard feeders, especially in the winter months.  Cooper’s Hawks are superb and powerful flyers, capable of rapid flight through dense vegetation, twisting with circuitous flight at high speeds and low levels. Prey may be taken on the ground, in flight, or in trees or bushes. They may even pursue prey into dense underbrush on foot.

Doves mate for life so now we seem to have a lone male plus our other Mourning Dove pair.  Banding studies reveal that Mourning Doves can live up to 10 years in the wild. Northern populations are migratory, and the mortality rate of juveniles can be as high as 70% in their first year of life. We have doves all year here in Central Virginia.  I am hoping our lonely male can attract a female. 

In grade school we learn that plants need water and light to grow. That they gather energy from the sun and water from the earth and rain.  Although the news isn't new as far as announcement, I just learned that a biological research team has made a discovery that at least one plant has another way of doing this.

The green alga, Chlamydomonas reinhardtii, not only engages in photosynthesis, but also has an alternative source of energy it can draw from.  Other plants.  : it can draw it from other plants. When faced with an environmental shortage, these single-cell plants can draw energy from neighboring vegetable cellulose instead.  This finding could also have a major impact on the future of bioenergy.  Check out the story in Science Daily.

I am always excited when science catches up with the amazing wonder of God's Creation.  We have so blatantly destroyed so many things that He provided for us in our ignorance and greed for the sake of convenience.  Discoveries like these make you wonder what is now extinct that would have played a role in making life better for us.  God's love provided it all for our pleasure and we were made for His pleasure.

Consider ... nothing can separate you from the love of God.  Not angels or demons, not principalities or powers.  Nothing in this world or out of it (Romans 8:38-39)!  May you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is (Ephesians 3:18) 

God tells us "You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart" (Jeremiah 29:13)  When you set your mind on God's love for you, all of His promises become more real and accessible.  You close the door on the devil's deception.  The doubts he throws into your mind as he did with Adam and Eve will no longer penetrate. 

Set your mind on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:2).  Choose to not doubt God's love like you would set a cruise control on a car and no longer doubt that it will keep you going 55 miles per hour.  Never allow another thought to come in contrary to that love.  Like cruise control, when a bit of a hill in the road comes before you, kick in a little extra power from within and choose to continue to believe The Word.

Remember ... Angels rejoice over you (Luke 15:10), demons flee from you (James 4:7), and God Himself dances over you with singing (Zechariah 3:17).

Have a Joyous Spring!

P.S. Anything in here that might help somebody you know?
Here's a link to the online version of this newsletter:

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Miniature Ponds – How To Build

How To Grow Vegetables In A Bucket

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Growing Chocolate M&Ms in Your Garden

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Friday, April 11, 2014

God Adores You!

by Donna L. Watkins

I was studying the early chapters of Genesis about God's creating the earth and man. They were His delight and He said it was very good. After everything else He created He said, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness." Isn't it astounding that we are created to "take after" the likeness of God the Father and Jesus?

Within our bodies is a special place called our spirits that God put in us so that He could dwell there. The Bible tells us that God is spirit and He communicates to us in spirit. That in itself is so incredible. How could we have any self-image problems when we are created in the image of the Almighty God, Creator of Heaven and Earth!

But more than that, I noticed something else. In Genesis 1:28 it tells us that God blessed them (Adam and Eve). When I looked up the Hebrew word for 'blessed' I found that it meant, "to kneel, to adore." Think about that! God kneeling down before His crowning creatures adoring Adam and Eve. NOT in worship or as if man should be worshiped.

The definition of the word "blessed" has nothing to do with worship. It is simply the picture of a Father overwhelmed with love for a child that has just come from the Mother's womb. He adores that child and can hardly believe it is something that was created from within himself. He holds the child and prays blessings over it. The definition for the word "adoration" is this: Profound love or regard. Imagine this! Doesn't it make you feel special and so well loved?

I've heard it said that the "death" that occurred after the Fall was the death of relationship with God as He originally intended. Man's reaction was to cover up and avoid God. Adam said he feared Him. God still loved His crowning creation but He couldn't allow them to live in the Garden because if they ate of the Tree of Life they would live forever and that now meant they would live forever in sin, because it had entered into them with their choice to believe the lies of the devil.

Sin increases once it enters into a man. This is why God had to destroy so many people in the Old Testament. They couldn't be saved - sin had not been atoned for through Christ, so they were stuck in the sin that they made themselves part of and to prevent the whole human race from becoming contaminated with sin, these people had to be destroyed.

He had done that once with a flood, but after that He promised that He would never do that again, but God had to destroy sin to preserve a people unto Himself. How would He ever have a virgin who could bear the Son of God? Sin was passed down through generations and sometimes even the animals were full of sin since having "relations" with them was the norm in idolatrous religions.

One of the first steps toward sin is dissatisfaction with what we have. This is what Satan used to deceive Adam and Eve. He made them think they were missing something when they had everything. People who are secure in who they are in Christ will not fall for the temptations of the devil. Although the Lord wasn’t the one responsible for man committing sin, He took responsibility for covering man’s nakedness after he sinned ... still a God of love. Man could only make aprons from fig leaves.

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Bees on Bull Thistle
Shenandoah National Park
The Lord killed an animal to cover their nakedness with hides. Even in our sin, God takes better care of us than we can ourselves. It took the shedding of blood to cover man’s sins. This was an illustration of what would later take place through the atonement of Christ. How awesome! The entire Old Testament is full of "types and shadows" of Christ's coming. God always had a plan of redemption for us.

Timing is something we don't understand since the Bible says, "With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day" (2 Peter 3:8). But we know that Jesus did come and that "He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world" (I John 2:2) That means for all future time. Before we were born our sins were atoned for. When Christ said, "It is finished," it was.

Our Father wants to bless us. "He who did not keep back His only Son, but gave Him up for us all, will He not with Him freely give us all things?" (Romans 8:32)

 Our Abba Daddy wants to have relationship with us like He had with Adam and Eve. To walk and talk with us daily. In the temple or synagogue the Holy of Holies is where God resided and only the priest could enter there and only once a year. When Jesus died, the temple veil (curtain) of the Holy of Holies was torn from top to bottom breaking wide open the access to the area where we could fellowship with God. Now we are His temple. He resides within us and wants to dwell with you in love.

I have gained a lot more understanding of the mystery of this from a book that my sweet friend, Lynn, gave me. It is one that I read a few pages at a time and then asked God to reveal to me what He wanted me to know from that information. I've read it more than once and keep getting a new revelation each time. The title is "The Temple Within: Fellowship with an Indwelling Christ." This link takes you to Amazon where you can read some of the book and also reviews.

One of my favorite Scriptures that makes me smile and melt before the Lord is Zephaniah 3:17. I like to personalize it when I read Scripture. "The Lord my God takes great delight in me, He quiets me with His love, and rejoices over me with singing." God literally adores you!

 He says, "And ye shall seek Me, and find Me, when ye shall search for Me with all your heart" (Jer. 29:13).

It takes more than the five minutes you have before your favorite TV program. It takes more than a list of requests in prayer at bedtime. But the rewards are awesome. You will be able to rise above circumstances. You will find peace and joy unknown to you before. Seek Him .... with all your heart!

Related Articles
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Simple Nest Boxes for Cavity-Nesting Bees

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Mason Bee Nesting Box
We put up a Mason Bee Nesting Box in 2006 and have so enjoyed knowing we're producing pollinators for our garden.  Pollinators are really challenged these days with all the pesticides and herbicides being used.  It feels good to add a positive side to the bad news.

There's a great article on the bees emerging from a similar nest box.  You can see their cute little faces and learn more about how they nest.

To get a better view of our nest box with the mud-sealed nests, view the enlarged image.

You can make these nesting boxes out of untreated wood or you can also buy them, but there's another method that can be used to provide a bee nesting spot to your garden.  They will nest in the stems of your garden plants, so you can gather up a bunch of them and make a different Mason Bee Box with illustrations in this article.

Miniature Ponds – How To Build

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Green Heron at Our 5x10 Foot Pond
The musical sound of water is calming and watching all the pond visitors is very exciting.  Like this Green Heron that visited one day for about an hour.  Keep in mind our pond is only 5x10 feet.  It was an exciting day to see a Green Heron.

In another year, we also had a pair of Mallard ducks visit on Mother's Day.  That was equally exciting, even though I knew they were diving for frogs eggs and tadpoles.

We just enjoyed the show.  They waddled away and later that day we found a duck egg in our yard.  A friend told me that they lay infertile eggs and leave them behind.

Small backyard ponds allow you to enjoy these things without taking up large amounts of space in your garden.  We originally put it in because I love frogs and love to hear them sing me to sleep.  So we don't keep it pristine and pretty.  It's a woodland pond and it balanced itself out in a year or so and all we do is clean out the leaves once a year. 

In this article, you'll find the steps for how to build a small pond. Read on to learn more


How To Grow Vegetables In A Bucket

By Susan Patterson, Master Gardener

Container planting vegetables is not a new concept, but what about using buckets for growing vegetables? Yes, buckets.

You don’t need a huge backyard to grow food for your family. In fact, you don’t even need a backyard at all. More and more people are container planting vegetables and getting plenty of food. In addition to saving space, using buckets for gardens also helps with a lot of other common gardening problems like young plants getting trampled, rabbits eating plants, poor soil, hard rains, weeds, and ease of care.

Another great benefit of growing vegetables in buckets is that they are portable. If your tomato is not getting enough sun in a certain area, simply pick it up and put it somewhere else.  Read the entire article.

Heart Health for Humans and Pets

by Dr. Jane Bicks
Dr. Jane sets her sights on expanding the national dialogue about heart health to include dogs and cats. In side-by-side comparisons (of humans, dogs and cats), our Veterinary Formulator looks at the seven most commonly asked questions about heart disease.

There’s a surprising range of issues, and certain things all species share in common. Learn about the health of your heart, as well as canine and feline heart health topics relevant to your pet kid.   Read Dr. Jane’s post now

Friday, April 4, 2014

I Can't Is Not A Good Decision

Moment by moment of every day we are making multiple decisions with our conscious mind ... and these become part of our non-conscious mind influencing the next batch of decisions.

As we think and choose, we send a signal that switches our genes on and off. Change is created each time we decide.

Sometimes we think "I can't change this or that" ... or we make statements like "this is who I am and how I think, so I can't change" ... BUT... God tells us to renew our mind. And science shows us when we renew our minds, amazing changes occur in our brains, which is called neuroplasticity.

Our brains are designed to reflect the mind. So, "I can't change my way of thinking" is as much of a decision as "I can change my way of thinking." Don't get stuck in the negative "I can't" ... watch this episode of Dr. Caroline Leaf's broadcast to see how!

Growing Chocolate M&Ms in Your Garden

Here's an excellent video in detail about growing M&Ms in your garden.  What a fun thing for children to get involved in.  If the video doesn't show up, click this link.

How To Use Salt To Kill Weeds

Sometimes we gardeners are sure that the weeds are going to get the better of us. They test our patience to the very core, sneaking up where they don’t belong and creeping in where they are hard to pull.

While there are many different chemical sprays to combat weeds, some of these can be quite dangerous and costly. For this reason, some of us may consider using salt to kill weeds. Let’s learn more about killing weeds with salt.  Read the entire article.

But here's a few other ideas:

Gardening With Vinegar
Using Sugar to Kill Weeds in Lawn
Using Cornmeal to Kill Weeds and Ants

Editor's Note: I have used table salt purchases in 25 lb. bags for areas where we don't want things to grow (under the gravel in the driveway mainly), and it works! If there's not nearby vegetation to creep in, it's lasted for three years. Down by the street in the easement area, the weeds are quicker to grow into the graveled driveway, so it only lasts a year there.

We have also used vinegar in a garden sprayer which was much quicker than sprinkling salt and then adding water to it.  You could enjoy a nice time in the rain if you put the salt down while the rain could water it in, but my husband likes the idea of putting it in a "tool" and spraying.  He adds a few drops of Sunshine Concentrate since soap was recommended in one recipe to help the vinegar stick to the plants and roots until it dies off in a few days.

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