Monday, December 31, 2007

Meema and Grandad

In 1933 my grandparents were married. My sister, Natalie, has written a post telling the story of their wedding.

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I have been considering different ways our family can have fun and enjoy each other in the coming year. Here are some of the ideas I have come up with:

Have a tea party each month with my children

  • January~ A Tea to Celebrate New Beginnings
  • February~A Valentine’s Day Tea
  • March~An Easter Tea
  • April~ A Spring Tea
  • May~ A Mother’s Day Tea (invite the moms and sisters)
  • June~A Birthday Tea (celebrate all the kids’ birthdays) and An Anniversary Tea (just the two of us)
  • July~An Independence Day Tea
  • August~ A Back to School Tea
  • September~ An Autumn Tea
  • October~A Chocolate Lover’s Tea
  • November~A Thanksgiving Tea
  • December~A Christmas Tea

Invite a family over for dinner or coffee and dessert once a month

Try to establish a read aloud time. We were very good about doing this when my oldest 2 were little. The past 5 years or so we have struggled with consistency in this area. I would really like to read through the Little House On the Prairie books, but I am concerned that my boys and Baby Girl would be bored stiff. I am going to have to get some book lists for boys and see what I can read that will keep them interested. A Dog Called Kitty was great and they paid attention the whole time!

Celebrate the holidays with our traditions. Make new traditions if needed. Last Valentine’s Day was our most memorable holiday of the year, imo. I am going to do the exact same thing this year and make it a tradition.

Simple things like making sure we all wear green on St. Patrick’s Day and planning ahead for the 4th of July will make a big difference in our celebrations. I think it is good to celebrate as a family.

I would really love to observe a Preparation Day and a complete rest on the Lord’s Day. I think it is wise to rest one day a week, but it is oh-so-difficult to do!!

We all know that I am an over-achiever in the planning department and a slacker in the follow-through department. But I love coming up with ideas like these!

Tonight we ate 7-Layer Dip for dinner and now we are watching Ratatouille. I am going to try to stay up till midnight, but I am already getting sleepy.

Happy New Year!!

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Sunday, December 30, 2007

I realized something a few years ago~ If I don’t stay home it is hard to clean the house. That may not be a revelation to any of you, but it was an eye-opener for me. It was a time when we were running around a lot, just coming home to eat and sleep, for the most part. Now, you may think that because we were not home the house would have stayed clean, but no, that is not the case.

Well, this morning I realized that weeks of being gone a lot, mainly working on the house on weekends, has taken its toll on our home once again. This is what happens:

During the week, I am constantly busy running kids back and forth to school, homeschooling, running errands, taking care of kids and babies, etc. Then, on the weekends, when I normally would take time to clean the house and “play catch up,” we are out at our new house working. That scenario times several weekends, and I have a huge mess.

A house cleaned by children (because they have managed to keep up with their daily jobs) will look like a house cleaned by children. They do a pretty good job cleaning their zones and cleaning up their messes, but this house needs a good Mom cleaning.

I remember the days when I had 2 children and I could take 2 hours and clean the house from top to bottom. I mean, deep clean the house in 2 hours. It was great!

Those days are over, mainly because we have more stuff and also because I get interrupted more often.

Baby has pink eye in both eyes and an ear infection in his left ear. So, this morning I am staying home from church with him and tonight dh is staying home from church with him. I am going to make a list and attempt to tackle it while dh is at church this morning with the kids.

Here’s the list, so far:

Morning Routine (get myself ready for the day, make my bed, get Baby ready for the day, breakfast and vitamins)

Start laundry

Deal with dishes

Put cleaner in potties

Quick pick up in each room

Vacuum all carpeted areas

Clean potties

Wipe out bathroom sinks

Sweep all hard floors

Empty all trashcans

Polish table

Light a candle in living room and turn on candle warmer in kitchen

Make coffee

Sit down and visit with my family and enjoy my “cleaner” home!

I bought a new calendar for 2008. It is called Motivated Moms and it is a printable calendar that you put in a binder or a planner. Go here to take a look at it. I like it because it breaks down the deep cleaning chores into small bites. You do a little bit each day. Let me know what you think! You can view a sample page if you go to the link I gave you.

Have a joyful Lord’s Day!

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Thursday, December 27, 2007

Taking Time to Review God's Blessings of 2007

As I sat down to research the past year, I came across this post.
I have taken time to write down the events of the past year each January since 2006. So I have a record of each month of 2005 and 2006 so far. I would like to put these in a scrapbook eventually, adding pictures for each month. I think that would be a great memory book to have. I will hopefully be able to copy one for each of the children to take with them when they grow up and start their families.

Doug Phillips, of Vision Forum, is who I learned this tradition from. Here is an excerpt from a newsletter I received from him today:

I. Outline and Chronicle the Many Providences of God

Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. (Hab. 33:2)

First, using simple bullet points, outline the key events for every week of every month of the year. Take the time to do the research which will help jog your memory and allow you to make an accurate record. I find that reviewing bills, blogs, journals, newspaper headlines, letters, and even organizing my photographs chronologically are enormously helpful tools. Those individuals who were faithful to journal or keep a diary will have little problem reconstructing key events. Give yourself a good week to reconstruct your own outline of the year. Also, by making this a family project, you will not only build your list with greater speed and precision, but (in the hands of a loving patriarch) the very act of chronicling the providences of God in your life is a blessed tool for family discipleship.

Every family will have a different set of priorities directing what they should record. In addition to recording the key events and providences of the year chronologically, I try to take the time with my family to record some of the following information on separate bullet lists:

  1. Where did I/we travel?
  2. What were the titles and key texts of sermons I preached?
  3. What books/articles did I write?
  4. What significant household projects did we accomplish in 2007?
  5. What were the most important meetings of the year?
  6. What special friendships were made this year?
  7. Which children lost teeth, and how many?
  8. Who grew in physical stature, and how much did they grow?
  9. Who learned to read this year?
  10. What diet and physical exercise regimen did I maintain to honor “my temple”?
  11. What books did I read? Did we read as a family? Did my children read?
  12. What Scriptures did my family memorize?
  13. What loved ones died this year?
  14. What were the great personal/ministry/national tragedies and losses of the year?
  15. What were the great personal/ministry/national blessings of the year?
  16. What were my most significant failures/sins for the year 2007?
  17. What unresolved conflicts/issues am I bringing into 2008?
  18. What significant spiritual and practical victories did I experience?
  19. In what tangible ways did I communicate gratitude to those who have blessed me and invested in my life?
  20. What are the top ten themes of 2007 for my family?
Doug also recommends that we say ‘Thank You’ to those who have invested in your life and forgive those who have wronged you.

I love this advice. If any of you are interested in reading the entire newsletter, just email me and I will sent it to you.

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Wednesday, December 26, 2007

In 2008 I Would Like To...

learn to quilt
learn to knit
finish my Names of Jesus cross stitch for our new home
design a Names of God cross stitch pattern
stick with Weight Watchers
actually lose the weight I want to lose
do some significant work on the kids' scrapbooks
read one book a month
force myself to stick to a daily schedule
take lots of pictures
get a new camera (I need to do this one before I do the one above)
get the good pictures developed instead of letting them sit in my hard drive forever
get my blog bound~ 2006 and 2007
stop eating fast food
write down the stories I remember my grandparents, grandparents-in-law, parents, and parents-in-law telling me
start a new tradition or two~Family Night and the Special Plate
write in a journal often
and lots of other things!!

There are really too many things to name. I keep thinking of more things I want to do, things I want to accomplish, ways I want to bless others, habits I want to establish, hobbies I want to cultivate. I know 2008 is going to be wonderful and I am looking forward to it's beginning.

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1 Corinthians 13---Christmas Version

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls,but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen,baking dozens of Christmas cookies,preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime: but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.

If I work at a soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home, and give all that I have to charity; but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angelsand crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.

Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the spouse.

Love is kind, though harried and tired.

Love does not envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love does not yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love does not give only to those who are able to give in return; but rejoices in giving to those who cannot.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things.

Love never fails.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust; but giving the gift of love will endure.

---Sharon Jaynes, Celebrating a Christ Centered Christmas

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Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas to You!!

Right now I am taking a break from wrapping and preparing food. I want to wish all of you a very merry Christmas! I hope you have a relaxing, fun time with the ones you love.

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Saturday, December 22, 2007

A Treasure

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I don't have time this morning to write a real post so instead I am sharing some wisdom from A Wise Woman Builds Her Home.
This is a great post she wrote a while back. I have been thoroughly convicted after reading it! Good stuff.

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Saturday, December 15, 2007

Making Our Homes A Haven: The Challenge

Crystal at Biblical Womanhood issued a challenge back on November 28th. I just found it today so I am starting late.
Read all about the challenge here.

Day One of the Challenge
1. Refresh our spirit by spending time with the Lord. (5 minutes) This is something I normally do each morning before anyone else wakes up, but I haven't done this in about a week. Everyone is already awake, but I am going to find a quiet spot to pray and read sometime after I take my shower.

2. Take Time To Plan (5 minutes) Crystal wants us to focus on our morning routine. Like the above, I normally have a morning routine I follow. It is pretty long, and I think I have posted it before. The basics are: spend time with the Lord, get myself clean and ready for the day, take care of my children, take care of my home.

3. Do Something (5-15 minutes)
Crystal says,

"Put on an apron, light a candle, and turn on some uplifting music. Then go to your front door and pretend you are a first-time visitor to your home. Walk in and take a look around. What is your immediate impression of your home? Is it calm and clean or cluttered and chaotic? Take five to fifteen minutes to clean, de-clutter, and beautify your entry area. Do a quick pick up if there are items out of place, mop or vacuum the floor, shake the rug, spot clean the walls, and rearrange things."

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Friday, December 14, 2007

Moving to Campers, Part 2

The plan has changed. We are no longer moving to the campers. Which means I will have internet service after all. We had an awakening and a reality check when I got the flu and Baby got pneumonia. I envisioned us in the campers trying to deal with illnesses, mud, rain, and cold weather, and I backed out of the plan.

I am not a camping type of girl. What was I thinking?

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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: the warmth of my jammies and my bed
Listen In: Baby Girl telling Baby something important
Supper Plans: a friend from church is bringing us dinner!
Today I Plan To: survive, figure out how to get my pocket pc off caps lock
View From the Kitchen Window: dreary, rainy weather

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Tuesday, December 11, 2007


1. This past Friday I came down with the dreaded flu.
2. It is actually the 2nd time I have come down with the flu this year, although this time it is obviously a worse case.
3. I stayed in bed all day Saturday and all day Sunday, except when dh drug me out of bed to go get something to eat and look at Christmas lights Sunday night.
4. Yesterday morning dh had to go to work so I had to get up and take dd13, dd2, and Baby to the pediatrician.
5. DD 13 has an ear infection.
6. DD2 has an ear infection.
7. Baby has pneumonia.
8. Dr. sent us to the hospital to get Baby's chest x-rayed and dd2's finger x-rayed.
9. Sometime over the weekend, while I was in bed, she got her finger shut in the hinge side of the glass door.
10. Ouch!
11.Her finger was not broken.
12. Baby's pneumonia was confirmed with the chest x-ray.
13. Neither one of them cried during the x-rays!
14. Dh took the day off work and met me at the hospital since I was sick and having a hard time.
15. I took 1000 mg of ibuprofen before I left to take them to the hospital.
16. I didn't mean to take 1000 mg.
17. I thought I was taking 800 mg.
18. Then I took a moment to look at the bottle.
19. It said 250 mg capsules.
20. Oops!
21. I was feeling pretty good by the time we were finished at the hospital so we went to lunch.
22. After lunch we came home and I crashed on the couch.
23. Dh went to get the boys from school while the babies and I napped.
24. Dh took all of the big kids (ds5, E, B, ds9, dd13) shopping.
25. Did I mention yesterday was my birthday?
26. They came home with shrimp and baked potatoes for dinners.
27. They also came home with lots of great presents!
28. Dh spent more $ than we budgeted for my bday.
29. I am okay with that.
30. All in all, I had a great birthday!
31. Dh babied me, my kids and dh gave me great presents, and dh and the kids cleaned up the house!

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Friday, December 07, 2007

A Great Deal!

If you are interested in creating a will, go here. US Legal Forms has a great holiday special right now. You can get a state-specific will for only $15.00! I have been meaning to do this for a while, so tonight I am going to take care of it. It is one of those things we don't want to think about, like life insurance. But I think it is so important to take care of those left behind if something happens to one of us or both of us.

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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Checking In

Packing is going well and is taking up lots of my time. It helps to keep my mind occupied. I still feel an ache in my heart pretty much all the time. I really can't imagine how my sister feels. To lose a child must be the hardest thing to bear. I am praying that God holds her in His hand and comforts her each day. This journey of grief will be a long one for all of us, but especially for her parents and siblings.

Anyway, I didn't mean to get off on that subject. It just dominates so much of my thinking these days.

So we have been packing and moving, packing and moving. Today we found out that we had a water leak out at the land for the past 3 days. Someone finally called today and turned off the water meter. I feel sick thinking about how much water was wasted and how expensive it's going to be. Water running full blast for 3 days. Ugh.

But it's not the end of the world and we can handle it.

This weekend we will be babysitting our 4 nieces. They are ages 8, 6, 3, and 1. We ought to have a fun, busy weekend full of squeals and giggles. I am sure I will be ready to send them home come Sunday afternoon. : )

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Thursday, November 29, 2007

Moving to Campers, Part 1

It dawned on me this morning that I have about 15 days to sort and pack our belongings to move to the campers. The reason I only have 15 days is because one weekend in December we will have our 4 nieces staying with us and then there is a Thursday-Saturday that we will be having a moving sale. We have to be out by the 26th of December (nice planning on my part, right?) but we want to be moved out by December 20th and then take a few days to clean the house.

So...I sat down and thought this through this afternoon and made a packing schedule. Basically, my goal is to pack one room per day. Each of the kids gets one box to pack their stuff in to take to the camper. Clothes, toothbrush, toys, all of their necessities and then whatever else will fit in the box that they want to take. The boxes are not very big. They are 10 in x 12 in x 15 in and they have lids. The Hubster and I get 2 boxes (or how ever many we need). I am packing Baby's stuff in my boxes.

Today I am supposed to have the Master Bedroom and Master Bathroom packed. It doesn't look like that is going to happen unless I make a pot of coffee and stay up really late. I have managed to pack all of my clothes and Baby's clothes. I have packed Baby Girl's clothes for storage but I haven't packed her clothes to take to the camper.

It has been taking me quite a while to pack because I am sorting as I go. I am sorting things into 3 categories: Camper, Storage (we will be storing all of the extra stuff in our barn), and Garage Sale. It is really fun to watch about 50% of our stuff go into the black Garage Sale trash bags. It feels great to get rid of stuff that we no longer need or use! Everything that doesn't sell at the garage sale will be donated to charity. That way I won't be hanging onto it and it will bless someone else.

The kids are all pretty excited about packing their box. It is cute to watch them pick out which toys are special enough to go into their box. I had better go so I can get some packing done. I just got Baby to sleep so I have a couple of hours before he needs me again.

Good night.

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My cell phone has been misplaced. This happens often, if you can even imagine that. Who me, be disorganized and lose stuff...all...the...time?

So my cell phone is my alarm clock. No cell phone=no alarm clock=waking up late.

I woke up late with a sore throat. I felt so tired I was about to cry. Some of that may have just been the fact that I am extremely emotional these days. So anyway, I asked dh if he could get the kids ready and take them to school while I went back to bed. Of course he said yes because he is a darling hubby (and also because he got home from work last night at 10 pm so he could go in a bit late today).

I went back to bed and the next thing I knew light was flooding into my room and it was 8:00. I haven't slept until 8 in a long time. I feel much better. I got up and drank some hot choffee (1/2 hot chocolate, 1/2 coffee) and my throat feels better now. I am still in my jammies and have not done anything else, but I feel optimistic and hopeful this morning.

Did I mention that we are moving in 3 weeks and I will not have a computer until February??
Yes. No computer until February.

Here's the deal:
We are building a house and it should be ready to move into by February. BUT, I am tired of paying rent and utilities here and I am also tired of the neighborhood children who are bad influences on my children and are acting inappropriately. So our solution is to move out to our land and live in my dad's and my father-in-law's campers. 2 campers. 9 people.

I first thought of this because I discovered some inappropriate things going on between my 13 year old daughter and a neighborhood boy. Not THAT bad, but boyfriend/girlfriend stuff that I don't' approve of. Then I discovered there is some boyfriend/girlfriend stuff going on between my 9 year old son and a girl in the neighborhood. The neighborhood kids I am talking about happen to be brother and sister and come from a very dysfunctional home. I feel sorry for them. I want to be a good example to them and show them what a loving Christian family looks like. I want them to have good role models and be blessed by my family. But what is happening is that my kids are following their example instead of the neighborhood kids following our example. Does that make sense?

Momma will go to great lengths to protect her babies from negative influences, so we are moving. Before you think I am crazy, just remember that we are going to move anyway, I am just getting us out of here a bit sooner. Dh thinks it was his idea. He loves it.

We are busily working out the details and trying to pack our belongings. I need to be working on that right now, but here I am typing this post.

I have a huge list of things to do today and I want to share them with you. It makes me happy to share my lists with you.

Morning Routine
Bible and Prayer ( didn't wake up and do this today)
Wash hands
Contacts in
Brush teeth
Get dressed
Fix hair and face
Breakfast and vitamins
Help kids get ready for school (dh did this one)
Take kids to school (this one too)
Clean up bathroom
Gather up all dirty laundry and take to kitchen
Sort it
Start it
Unload then load dishwasher
Make bed
"A" items on To Do list

Daily Chores
feed pets
clean kitchen countertops
sweep kitchen floor
clean kitchen sinks
Sweep porch/entryway
Read to kids
4 loads by 4 (laundry)

To Do List
order vitamins
call someone to do septic system
call someone to do sheetrock
sort, weed, pack stuff
work on craft project w/kids
get nieces' addresses
call Lowe's to get bid on insulation
put cash into envelopes

There you have it. That is what my day looks like. I am going to get started now.
: )

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Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Baby Girl'sNew Accent

There= Thay-er
Chair= Chay-er

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Today I am helping my hubby with a few things. I am going to Lowe's to pay for the shower for the girls' bathroom (new house). Then I am working on our budget, paying bills, etc. I am going to get the clean laundry folded and put away then work on packing. I consider all of these things to be helping him. He has been running the house since last Monday and it is time for me to get back to my job.

It is incredible how you can be going along, taking care of your family, living your life, and then WHAM out of nowhere something hits you and throws your life into crisis mode. That is what happened last week when I got the call that Megan had died. She took her own life. Laundry and dishes and cooking and cleaning up all of the sudden didn't matter to me.

Dh has been taking care of dinner each night so we have been eating macaroni and cheese with lil' smokeys, nachos, and waffles. : ) He is such a sweetheart and the kids love it when he takes over the cooking and grocery shopping. We have several kinds of sugary cereal and we also have strawberry syrup in the fridge for making strawberry milk. There is probably ice cream in the freezer but I haven't looked. These are all things that I don't normally buy, so the kids think it's great!

The laundry is clean and piled high on the couch. I just need to take the time to fold it and put it all away. For some reason, that is my least favorite thing to do. It is ranked down there with mopping floors.

Do you like my new signature? Annie must have changed it for me. Thanks, Annie!

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Monday, November 26, 2007

I can't seem to focus on anything this morning. I keep coming over to my computer to look at Megan's face. I can't hear her voice but at least I can look at her face.

My house is a pile of filth and squalor.

What does squalor mean anyway?
Let me look it up...
Okay, this is the definition as given by
squalor- n. A filthy and wretched condition or quality.

Yes, that describes my house right now. It is beyond horrid. Every surface is dirty. The kitchen floor looks like we all ate ice cream and dripped it on the floor. There are dishes piled up begging to be washed. My van is stuffed full of suitcases needing to be taken out and unpacked. I need to make a menu and a list and go to the grocery store. But instead I keep coming over here to the computer.

I have managed to make some coffee, put on Christmas music, dig all of the dirty laundry out of the hampers and hiding spots, sort the laundry into huge piles on the kitchen floor, and start a load. I also managed to take my children to school this morning, the ones who are well anyway. I have 2 children in bed today with sore throats and coughing. Ugh.

I am going to have to give myself a break and take it easy. My heart is broken. My mind is numb. Any little thing I get done is going to have to be enough.

The baby is awake now and crying in his bed. Gotta go.

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Sunday, November 25, 2007


Our niece Megan left this life on November 19, 2007. She was a sweet, kind, loving, vibrant young lady. We loved her so very much. She will be loved and missed every day until we see her again.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Please pray for my family

We have had a tragic death in our family. Please pray for all of us, especially my sister Christina and my brother-in-law, Sean, and their 5 living children.

The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

He heals the
brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.

Be merciful to me, O LORD, for I am in distress; my eyes grow weak with sorrow, my soul and my body with grief.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they
comfort me.

comfort in my suffering is this: Your promise preserves my life.

May your unfailing love be my
comfort, according to your promise to your servant.

Shout for joy, O heavens; rejoice, O earth; burst into song, O mountains! For the LORD
comforts his people and will have compassion on his afflicted ones.

The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me,
because the LORD has anointed me
to preach good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release from darkness for the prisoners,

to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,

and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty
instead of ashes,
the oil of gladness
instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise
instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the LORD
for the display of his splendor.

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Saturday, November 17, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: dreams
Listen In: PS2 NFL game
Supper Plans: leftovers
Today I took care of kids, went out to land to visit with in-laws and hubby as they worked on electrical wiring in new house, and had a great idea that I will share with you soon!
View From the Kitchen Window: trees, an overcast sky

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Saturday, November 10, 2007

Decorating the New House

I have been browsing websites this afternoon looking for decorating ideas.

This is what I have found so far:

Scriptures stenciled on walls and cabinets around the house:

I especially like this idea. I stenciled Philippians 4:13 on my living room wall in Mission, but I like the idea of going all the way around the room. I have started a list of scriptures that I want on my walls and cabinets. I will have to post that later because I don't want to look for it. : )

Family Tree wall:

Isn't this a neat idea?

I want to have a wall where I hang black and white pictures of the kids. I will probably have the family tree wall and the kids' wall in the formal living room. Then along the stairs I will hang their school pictures and our family pictures.


This blog
has beautiful artwork. I love this style of art and I love the paintings of mothers and children, fathers and children, flowers, etc.

These are also very cute. Maybe I could put these on the upstairs hallway wall.

Donna Green is an artist I like a lot. Her Velveteen Rabbit series is wonderful! The painting below is hers.


Right now I just have candles in teacups in 2 spots. I want pretty candle holders and lots of yummy scented candles, like Yankee candles or Triple Scent candles.

Feminine and romantic:

With 5 boys at home, I had given up on having a romantic, pretty home. But, I think I am going to give it a try. Obviously, only certain rooms will have that pretty feel to them. I think the formal living room, my bedroom and bathroom, and the guest powder room are a few places I can decorate this way. The babies’ bedroom is another room I can make pretty. Yes, the baby is a boy, but the room can still be masculine and pretty. Hmmm…that sounds like a contradiction, but hopefully you know what I mean. The toddler is a girl so her part of the room can be feminine.

A magazine I love is Romantic Homes. Southern Living has a lot of romantic decorating also.

The rest of the house will be practical and simple, I hope. I have LOTS of stuff to get rid of before anything can be simple. Right now we just have so much stuff. But I may find that once I have some storage space, we don't have as much junk as I thought.


My kitchen is going to be bright and airy. I have a huge window overlooking the backyard. My appliances will be stainless steel and the cabinets will be antiqued white. I had planned o base my color scheme on a painting that I love called The Mission Bell Tower. It is a painting of the bell tower down the road from our home in Mission. It is really beautiful. The colors are dark yellow, dark green, and a lighter shade of green, with sky blue.

I am going to frame some of the kids' artwork and hang it in the kitchen.

One more thing:

ha ha!!

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This is the most encouraging, elegant, beautiful blog I have ever seen!! I am obsessed with it at the moment. I love the artwork. It is really beautiful.
And this lady has 8 children!!!!

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Baby Girl's Tooth Injury

Yesterday evening Baby Girl and DS5 were chasing each other through the house. Baby Girl tripped, falling into a table leg. She cut her lip, hit her nose, which made it bleed, and worst of all, she hit one of her front teeth, almost knocking it out. It is kind of hanging there, wanting to come out.
I called the ambulance, because there was all this blood and it scared me! They came, complete with sirens blaring, and checked her out. They said the tooth needs to come out and told me to call her pediatric dentist, which we don't have. They were extremely nice and I was very blessed by their presence. They have such a difficult job.
We talked with a pediatric dentist last night and he said that 99% of the time the tooth will go back to it's position. The tooth will be dead, but it will go back to it's spot. This morning her tooth looks like it is starting to go back to it's position. Isn't that strange?
She is still in pain and she is very cautious about taking a drink or a bite of anything, but she is doing much much better this morning. She slept all night, which was an answer to prayer.
I may post a picture later today. She looks so much better this morning. The swelling is down and I managed to get the blood all cleaned of of her mouth. She wasn't too happy about that!
Right now she is bossing Chunky Monkey around. Sounds like Baby Girl is back to normal!

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Friday, November 09, 2007

Take a look at this beautiful, simple Fall centerpiece. I love it!
What do you think? Doesn't it look quick and easy, but really pretty? Check out the cute high chair cover in her dining room (bottom picture). So cute!!

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Saturday, November 03, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: spending time in God's Word in the wee hours of the morning
Listen In: Chunky Monkey "talking" in his sleep
Supper Plans: Texas One Dish, baked sweet potatoes, salad
Today I Plan To: tackle the mountain of clean laundry that has made it's home on my couch
View From the Kitchen Window: dark

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Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: warm jammies
Listen In: dishwasher running, baby talking, my timer ticking
Supper Plans: see post below
Today I Plan To: buy one more pumpkin for ds9 to take to school tomorrow to carve, work on house, finish creating my holiday planning spot, make appt. for holiday picture, write a few emails, write a few notes, read my new Above Rubies magazine from cover to cover : )
View From the Kitchen Window: sunshine, dh's truck (I now drive the truck; diesel is expensive right now and he drives almost 100 miles each day to work and back. I only drive about 15 miles each day so I am driving the expensive and LOUD vehicle)
What I Am Reading: I am currently reading A Dog Called Kitty to the kids~ neighborhood kids and my kids. I am reading a book called Disciplines of the Beautiful Woman by Anne Ortlund. This is such a great book! I highly recommend it.

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Menu Plan Monday

Last week I modified my menu quite a bit. We ate some of the meals I had planned but a few of them are going on this week's menu.

we had Smashing Pumpkin Soup, whole wheat rolls, and salad

*The pumpkin soup was not a hit with the kids. The adults liked it; it was a nice change. It had a nice subtle flavor even with the curry. I will make it again, but it's not a favorite.

Chicken and Artichoke Casserole, steamed baby carrots with brown sugar, brown rice, baked butternut squash

Texas Black Bean Soup for the crockpot, brown rice

Texas One Dish, baked sweet potatoes, and spinach salad

Bean Chili (black beans, pinto beans, red beans, chili seasoning, diced tomatoes), cornbread


Halibut Marengo, baked potatoes, steamed broccoli, salad

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Monday, October 29, 2007

Holiday Countdown

Assignment #1:

Designate a spot for Christmas planning.

My spots are limited because we are very crowded in this little rent house. I am going to designate the countertop in my kitchen where my cookbooks are located. I am going to have to clean it off first and then tell dh and the kids not to pile their papers there.

I need to put these items in my Christmas planning area:

  • Christmas Notebook (I will be making this later on today)
  • Pens and pencils
  • Christmas cards (need to make appt. for holiday picture for Christmas card)
  • Address book
  • Stamps (order online)
  • Mailing labels
  • Stapler
  • Sticky notes or tape flags
  • Accordion file or hanging file folders for tear files
  • Christmas magazines
  • Mail order catalogs
  • Cookbooks
  • Recipe files
  • Christmas books
  • Lap desk or writing surface (going to use kitchen table)
Today is day #9 of the official Holiday Countdown, but I am just getting started so it is day #1 for me. I have attempted to follow this plan for a few years now, since 2004 I think, and it always help me have less holiday stress. I never follow it to a T, but I try to. Each year I get a little better at planning the holidays so that they are not stressful. The most stressful thing for me is traveling during the holidays. Just the packing alone takes me a full 8 hour day. That is very stressful and I don't like it. This year we are staying in TX for Thanksgiving and traveling to OK for Christmas. Next year we will be in our new house so we will be hosting Thanksgiving and staying home by ourselves for Christmas. I am looking forward to that!
Have a happy Monday! : )

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Saturday, October 27, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: "Titus 2" women (older Christian women who teach younger Christian women)
Listen In: a conversation about a spider
Supper Plans: sister-in-law has something planned for dinner
Today I Plan To: go out of town with brother-in-law and his family
View From the Kitchen Window: our scarecrow in the front yard

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Wednesday, October 24, 2007


Sometimes it seems that there is just too much work to do...too many messes to clean up...too many kids to raise...not enough money...not enough energy...

But then I remind myself that God is in control. He gives us what we need. He watches over us. He pours His love and blessings onto us. I remind myself that I can do ALL THINGS through Christ, who gives me strength.

I also remind myself that sometimes all I need is a good nap. So, I am going to go take that nap and wake up with a fresh perspective and a great attitude!

God gives rest to those He loves. I am so thankful for that!

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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Beauty in the Common Things: parents
Listen In: ds5 spelling words out loud
Supper Plans: BBQ beef sandwiches, salad
Today I Need to: download Dave Ramsey Show to iPod, work on laundry and house, make grocery list, go to grocery store, write a few thank you notes, plan Christmas picture/Christmas card, upload pictures of horses to blog (did I mention that we got 2 horses Sunday?? We are SO excited!!!), make sure ds5's outfit is clean for school pictures tomorrow : )
View From the Kitchen Window: sunshine, wind, green grass that is starting to turn brown

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Time Travel Tuesday~accident or illness edition

This week Annie has asked us to tell about the most serious illness or accident we have ever had. I lead a boring life. I have not ever been really sick or had a bad accident. I know, that is a good thing, right?

I did have a near-drowning once at South Padre Island. I was on a trip to the island with the youth group from our church in Mission, Texas. I was swimming out to a sand bar alone and I kept swimming and swimming and swimming...and I never got there. I couldn't figure it out because the sand bar was there in the past (a few hours before this happened we had swam out to it). Anyway, I got really tired and the waves started going over my head. I couldn't keep myself above the waves, I was swallowing water, every time I tried to catch my breath a wave would crash into my face. It was very frightening.

I finally decided to give up. I literally made a decision to let myself just go under the water. There was no one anywhere near me and no one could see me out in the water. My muscles were aching and I was so tired from fighting those waves.

Then out of nowhere I saw man and his son on boogie boards. I cried out to them but they couldn't hear me. they finally saw me and came over. The man put me on the boogie board and took me to the shore. I collapsed onto the sand and cried.

That was the closest to a real accident I have gotten. I haven't had any real car accident, no broken bones, no hospitalizations except for pregnancy related stuff (kidney stones, miscarriages, etc.).

Wow, what a positive topic you chose this week, Annie! LOL Just kidding!

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Monday, October 22, 2007

My Mary Kay online party

I am hostessing a Mary Kay "E-PARTY" through my Consultant, Joslyn Eaton..... it will be ALL Day (24 hours) on Tuesday, October 23rd!!

Here is all you have to do...

*Get comfortable!! You can even shop in your jammies!

*Visit her web page here.

View and shop for the latest and GREATEST in Mary Kay Products!! You can even do a virtural makeover!!

*Don't forget the Holidays are fast approaching so check your list twice...she'll even gift-wrap for you for FREE!!

*You will also receive a FREE GIFT with a $40 or more purchase!

*You can either pay online with a credit card or pay Joslyn upon delivery.

*Joslyn will confirm your order with you and arrange for delivery or shipping with you via email or phone (whichever you indicate on your order).

Please put MY NAME in the COMMENTS SECTION on the order page! This will let Joslyn know that you joined my E-PARTY so I will receive my hostess credit (FREE Products)!!

*If you would like to get FREE Products and want to hostess your own ON LINE PARTY, make sure to let Joslyn know in the Comments section. She will send you the details and an "E-MESSAGE" that you can pass on to your email list of friends!!

Don't delay...this "E-PARTY" invitation self-destructs in 24 hours!!!

Have Fun and Happy Shopping!!

P.S. If you have any questions about any of the products you can email me at or call me.

I sent out an email about this to a lot of you, but there are some of you whose email addresses are MIA. So I thought this would be a great way to get the word out there.

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