The 1888 Journal: Mysteries & Entries Part II

We’re picking up where we left off in the 1888 Journal entries. 
Since the last post (Part 1), a reader took it upon herself to dig into this mystery writer, and found some interesting info that leads us to believe this girl, Siena, or Siera, or Sirra, is from Vermont…we think Dover. That’s a great start to putting together the pieces of this young lady’s life!
Hopefully we’ll have more to share soon!
Enjoy the entries below, and feel free to comment at the end of the post with any info or insight you’d like to share. 🙂 
Tues. Jan. 10, 1888
Went to school.
Wed. Jan. 11, 1888
Went to school. 
Thurs. Jan. 12, 1888
Pleasant & cold.
Went to school.
George Piper [pretty sure it’s piper] and George Prouty here this evening. [Here we find out Geo. Prouty from the Jan. 5th entry is George Prouty…now I wonder who George is…both Georges. Family? Suitors?]
Fri. Jan. 13, 1888
[no entry]
Sat. Jan. 14, 1888
At home, helped do the work, finished a pair of wristers [I think wristers are similar to mittens]. 
Sun. Jan. 15, 1888
Couldn’t go to meeting today. Went up to the Baptist meeting this eve.

Mon. Jan. 16, 1888
Went to school.
Scottie & I went to Ann Knapps this evening, a few minutes.
Tues. Jan. 17, 1888
Went to school.
Wed. Jan. 18, 1888
A beautiful day.
Went to school.
Scottie, Will, Sucian [not sure about the name…] and I went up to meeting this evening.
I weighed 137 ½, and Scottie 102 ¼ . [I wonder if they were weighed at church? Strange.]
Her entries stop for a while, and do not pick up until Feb. 1, 1888…which makes me wonder why the long silence. Was there a winter storm? Sickness? Did her brother Scottie play a joke and hide her journal?
Will post again soon!
Related Posts:

4 Reasons to Host A Backyard Bible Club

Hi! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

My name is Hannah Conway, Army wife for more than a decade, and the author of The Wounded Warrior’s Wife, and Wedding a Warrior from Olivia Kimbrell Press.
This summer, our family hosted our very first Backyard Bible Club! We want to share the experience, and encourage military and civilian families to host your very own Backyard Bible Club for several reasons:
1: We’re promoting community, and that’s always a good thing!
2:  We’re cultivating relationships when we invite your neighbors over, and living in a military community it’s so vital to make connections with others we can trust, learn from and grow together. So to my military families out there, I challenge you to host a club.
3: The third and most important reason to host a backyard bible club is, we get to share Jesus with kids! How often do we sit in our homes and ever really get to know our neighbors, let alone work up enough nerve to tell them about Jesus or even let them know we’re a follower. A backyard Bible club helps to bridge that gap.
4: The 4th reason to host a club…well, that’s pretty easy! We get to have a lot of fun…a lot of messy fun…or not so messy, but our family likes messy games…really messy games! We’ve got the pics to prove it!

Thinking of starting your own Backyard Bible Club? Check out for easy-to-use curriculum or use any of our ideas, lessons/agendas, crafts, games etc.

Feel free to comment below with suggestions for next year’s club, or suggestions/advice for anyone interested in hosting their own club.  

Scripture Blocks Made From Scrap Wood, Paint, Construction
Paper, and Modge Podge.

Never Go to the Grocery Store Again: Whole Foods Living Challenge & GIVEAWAY!

The Whole Foods Life Without Ever Going to the Grocery Store Again!

Challenge & Giveaway! Use the giveaway tools button at the bottom of the post to enter to win The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila Your email address is ONLY used to notify a winner. J

Never going to the grocery store again, now that’s a dream come true, but my family needs to eat. It’s not like growing my own food and relying on local farmers for sustenance is a valid option, right? Actually, it is, and one family is making it work rather well!

Say Hi to the Syner’s!
Hey guys! My name is Lisa Syner and I have been married to my wonderful husband, Cliff, for the past 12 years. I homeschool our 3 children on our small farm in Clarksville, Tennessee. I have a passion for the cultivation of the earth and the fruits of that labor, especially deep purple tomatoes and creamy Japanese sweet potatoes. Our family has chosen to follow Christ’s calling to love God and love others by stewarding this land and teaching others the beauty of tending, preserving and harvesting the bounty of His creation.

I had the great opportunity to hang out with Lisa and her family not long ago, see their farm, pick their brains, and soak up anything they wanted to teach me. They’ve taken a whole foods diet to a new level, and I’m intrigued.
Lisa and her family were stationed in Hawaii (whoop ,whoop for another Military family!). They saw firsthand fields of produce being mass produced, quickly grown, and sprayed with chemicals. She couldn’t shake the knowledge and concern of that food being shipped out and consumed by individuals who had no clue what gunk they were putting in their body, or where the food even came from.
Not many of us scan the isles of the grocery store looking for things that are harmful for us, well, sometimes I willingly purchase some sugary treat. For the most part, we buy things that seem healthy, or the box says it’s nutritional, so in the cart it goes.

Lisa says, “People are so disconnected from God’s creation. We don’t know how to eat.” I have to agree. We try to make the right choices, but we’re mis-informed. Before the Syner’s stopped going to the grocery store, they decided to only purchase and eat whole foods, meaning nothing from a box, and only organic, grass fed meats.

“Yes, it was expensive.” Lisa nodded with a grimace on her face. “We were spending $1300-1500 a month, easy.” I may have gasped or choked on my tongue at that moment.

And after the No Grocery Store Challenge?
“We eat the same quality of food, better actually, and we spend between $680-$740.”  Lisa smiled, and I’m sure her hubby is still smiling over those savings. “We used to have so much waste, but now, we use every bit.”

This lifestyle couldn’t have been easy?
“It’s been a learning process, but we base our meals on local, seasonal foods, and it’s healthier, and cheaper.” She also adds that there’s no pizza night to fall back on, so she’s got to be prepared.
It’s really just getting back the basics of how things used to be.
They “grow slow,” using heirloom seeds (organic, Non-GMO), and raise heritage animals that are able to adapt to their environment, making them stronger, less likely to get sick, and can forgo shots other animals raised for mass production require. Their chickens cluck about providing fresh eggs, and their sheep will provide much needed milk for homemade cheese, which Lisa is very excited about. A dairy sheep! How cool is that? Local farmers and farmers markets provide what they have not been able to produce.
“Everything is made from scratch.” And she’s not lying. Even mustard, and cream cheese! “If I don’t know how to make it, I look up a recipe.” I love that attitude. “If it’s not local, we don’t buy it.” Not lying their either.

Any concessions to this way of life? I had to ask that.
“Coffee is a concession.” Totally agreed with her. “Since there are no local coffee bean farmers, we buy the beans from locally owned coffee shops. We also eat out once a month, and if we’re at a friend’s house, we eat what we’re served.”
What about treats and sweets? No chocolate?
“No chocolate.” I’m kinda sweating over this. “Veggies are our snacks. Honey, homemade ice cream is a once in a great while treat when we have excess of milk, and local/seasonal fruit.”

Any health benefits you’ve noticed?
“I have so much more energy since beginning the challenge, and my seasonal allergies are much more controlled.” Her eyes widened in a ‘Thank the Lord’ kind of way.

What have you loved most about this lifestyle?
“The anticipation.” Her eyes lit up. “Food is a gift, each season for a purpose. There’s also a freshness factor. Before doing this, I never stopped to appreciate these gifts from God.” Lisa sat on the couch with me, hand propped on her head. “I’ve also love the farmers. We’re building new relationships, connecting in new ways, face to face, and able to share the gospel.”

Gardening tips?
“We use a no till method.” The Syner’s lay cardboard on top of the ground garden area, then pile on their fall leaves, mulch, and compost. “Start this process around February.” By planting time they simply push the leaves aside and plant into the rich earth. They actually water less because of how well the mixture holds moisture.
“Fish fertilizer.” Okay, that stuff is disgusting, but, as Lisa pointed out, the Native Americans used fish in their farming, so even though it stinks, it works.

Take the Challenge!
What is your challenge for the readers out there, and any advice to help them meet that challenge?
“Try not going to the grocery store for 30 days by eating whole foods from local vendors.” Sounds sort of easy, but then again, we all know things are easier said than done. To help us stick to the challenge, Lisa says, “Be committed. Find your local farmers and artisans, and ask them questions about their produce. Plan and prep what you want to eat. Have fun.”
She ends with, “It’s not complicated, it’s commitment.”
How about it Dear Readers? Are we up to this challenge?
For More Info on Whole Foods Living & Resources, Connect with the Syner’s @ 

Liberty Star Farms
Liberty Star Farms on Facebook
Community Resource Guide

Other Suggested Reading:

Remember to Enter to Win a The Homemade Pantry by Alana Chernila, one of Lisa’s go-to resources.


Movie Review: Mom’s Night Out

Moms’ Night Out, Opening in Theaters May 9th! Mother’s Day Weekend! the flowers, and chocolate this Mother’s Day. Go see this movie instead! Well, don’t feel like you have to jip on the flowers and chocolate, but do go see this movie!

Today I’m giving my movie review for Moms’ Night Out, which will be releasing in a theater near you on May 9th. Before I begin, I would like to thank Emeals for sending me, and my husband to this premiere. We had an amazing evening! Emeals makes meal planning on a budget easy for any family. Check out for a variety of meal options that include gluten free, paleo, vegan, and entire crockpot meal recipes. Nice, right?

So. Motherhood. It’s…hard…fun…crazy…messy…amazing…tiring…full of self-sacrifice, but totally worth it.  Moms’ Night Out, does an excellent job of portraying all the ups, downs, ins and outs of mom-life. In this film, a few stressed out Moms, in desperate need of a night off, away from their children, embark on a MNO (Moms’ Night Out) that ends up TOTALLY opposite of the fun-filled, kid-free, relaxing evening they envisioned. Everything that could go wrong, goes wrong and everyone…husbands, wives, kids, and their “newly acquired friends,” end up at the county jail to create what surely has to be the worst MNO EVER, with the best outcome! This film acknowledges the challenges mothers face, encourages them to embrace the beautiful-wonderful mess that motherhood can be, and affirms them in the importance of their God given roles as mothers with very life like scenarios that made me, and my husband, laugh, and even tear up at times (Note: I teared up, not him.). It’s a Faith based film, action packed without crazy violence, no offensive or suggestive language, super funny, and definitely a movie to watch with the family. I give this movie my stamp of approval, and two thumbs up! 

For more ministry resources or information on group tickets for your church, Mom’s group and or other organization, click here.

My first initial, sorta random thoughts about this movie:
“Um…am I the inspiration for this movie, ’cause I’m pretty sure this is a documentary of me…having crazy mom-moments?”
“Oh wow! They’re talking about God!”
“Oh…it’s a Faith based film! Hello Ministry opp!”
“Yes! Yes! This movie depicts motherhood in ways that words don’t seem to justify! I feel like I need to hug the writers/producers or anyone on the production team that will let me hug them!”
“Hilarious! Bahahaha”
“Oh my word…the preacher’s wife got tazed! Bless her heart. Bahahaha”
“No curse words! Score!”
“No crude humor…awesome-sauce…the kids can watch this!”

Enjoy the pics from our premiere experience!

Tried on 4 dresses, decided on the black one! Ready for my first movie premiere!
My poor hubby had to be pepper sprayed at work that day! Bahahaha! I know I have a sick sense of humor. Sorry.
His ear was still burning, but he held my door open!
What a Gentleman!

At the theater! We may have been just sorta slightly over dressed, but who cared?! It was awesome!!
And we had a nice, KID FREE, dinner after the movie! Win, Win!
They gave us a goody bag!! I LOVE FREE STUFF!


Choosing Life: A Celebration Baby Shower at the Hope Pregnancy Center

The Feet of Those Who Were Given Life

As part of a Mom’s group, I recently had the honor of taking part in hosting a Baby Shower for many mothers-to-be at the Hope Pregnancy Center here in Clarksville.

Months earlier, many of the women in attendance found themselves pregnant & scared. There were many who didn’t want to be pregnant, didn’t want the baby, and considered having an abortion.

But they changed their mind. Some will choose adoption for their baby, and bless a loving and deserving family. But all of these women chose life.

Thank You Chick-Fil-A for
Donating to the Shower!

I admire their courage. In the face of fear they sought help and guidance. So many people, myself included, find it difficult to reach out in a time of need. I don’t want anyone to think I’m incompetent. Besides, I’m an Army Wife, and we can do it all, right? 

Sweet Treats!

Their bellies were large, and their feet were swollen as these lovely ladies neared the end of their pregnancy. Were they still scared? I never asked, but to some degree, I’m sure they were. We chatted about due dates, gender, baby names, nursery rhymes and shared labor stories–women want those details.

The “Don’t say Baby” game!

Listening, watching, and socializing with these women, I realized that every expectant mother deserves a baby shower. All of the shower stuff. From the fabulous food to the fun, right of passage baby shower games (I never lost my clothes pin!). Every mother-to-be deserves to be celebrated, especially these Mommas, because they chose life when they didn’t have to, when they thought it would be easier not to, when they knew their families would disapprove of their situation and possibly abandon them. Even then, they still chose life. Now that is something to throw a shower for!

Gifts for All the Mommas!

No matter the circumstance, right, wrong, whatever the reason these women found themselves pregnant and at a Pregnancy Center, they are still a child of God. They are beautiful, worthy, loved, special, and hand crafted by our Creator with a purpose. The child they carry is not a mistake. That baby was handcrafted for a purpose, he or she is beautiful, loved, special and worthy of the best life possible.

I know I’m speaking for our group, but I’m praying that we as the host were able to bless these expectant Momma’s as much as they blessed us.

Being an Army Wife, I’ve kind of adopted the saying of “grow where you’re planted.” For me, that means making a Kingdom impact on the community where I currently live. What better way to make a difference than partnering with a local pregnancy center to speak words of life and encouragement to women who may have found themselves unexpectedly expecting? 

Fun in a Hayloft: Local Sites and Scenes For Family Fun

The Hayloft gives new meaning to the phrase, “born in a barn.”

On my quest to find budget friendly family activities, my daughter and I stumbled upon this little patch of heaven–a barn. But not just any barn–The Hayloft Barn sale barn! This amazing wonder looked as if Pinterest had exploded inside!Think flea market on craft steroids!

My words cannot do this place justice! Take a gander at the pics below!


HOME MADE MARSHMALLOWS!! Kid Approved, Mom approved and DELICIOUS!
Visit to order your own today!


Local Vendors: Meet “Those Girls.” Every bone in their body is crafty! Click here to see more! 
Some of the Crafts that Caught My Eye

An Extra Splash of Cuteness!
More of the Scene for You to Enjoy!

Meet local Author Christie Jones Ray. Visit Christie at

Live music from local Musicians!
I’m trying not to covet this chandelier! 

And More to Behold!

Meet local Artist Kellie Montana! Fabulous Art! Click here to visit her site!

I hope you enjoyed the pictures as much as I enjoyed searching the scene! 🙂 Feel free tell me about any local venues you came up on. Have a blessed day! Now go find yourself a barn to play in!