September 30, 2007

The Aftermath

I say that jokingly. Our yard sale went well. We had wonderful weather, praise the Lord! We sold quite a bit and had a lot left, so it went to Goodwill. We made enough money to get our kiddies a swingset, which was our plan. This will be a good edition to our backyard since we sold their previous play equipment yesterday, LOL!

My three girls and my sister's two boys busied themselves with sidewalk chalk all day. Let me tell ya, in a place where this a lot of sidewalk/concrete and the kids have to be outside all day, the chalk is great! The downside is, Leiah had a hard time confining her artistic sensibilities to the floor, and decorated the windows, the ice chest, the brick wall, herself and she also enjoyed the taste of the chalk. Yak!

I have been waking up each morning by 5:30- sometimes a little earlier, and once a little later. I have no alarm- I just wake up. It is the Holy Spirit I am sure. Today however, since I knew we would be having church, I used my early morning time to clean up! There were loads of dishes to wash and things to put away, and muffins to bake for breakfast :) (gotta use up those bananas) I may post the recipe soon- I love it!

I just want to ask my readers an honest question. Since I've put up pictures of myself on this blog I know you all can give me an objective opinion. I have always struggled with my weight- I mean in highschool I was athletic and muscled and I still weighed 190lbs and wore size 14 clothes- no fat on my body at all!

After I got married I dieted and lost around 40lbs- still size 14. After I started having babies, I just haven't been able to lose weight. The only thing that I tried that worked was the Southbeach Diet- and it is very rigid and my body didn't like it. (as in I visited the toilet a lot and not for 'number 1') Satan is always hanging this over my head- if I were thinner this would be better yada yada yada...I married a small man and I feel like we're unbalanced.

So, what is your honest opinion? Do I look fat? Do I look ok? If you were me would you be embarrassed and try to lose weight pronto? And, if anyone has been in my shoes, how did you manage to lose the weight with little ones and a budget and a home to keep? I am tired of struggling with finding clothes/fitting myself and just feeing like crud. But it just seems so hard.

I was planning to do things gradually- start drinking more water, eat more raw fruits/veggies, and then eventually cut the carbs to one meal a day. Also I wanted to start up my exercise regimen, now that things are slowing down, finally! Anyways, tell me what you think, be honest but be gentle :)

September 28, 2007

Psalm 27

"The Lord is my light and my salvation- whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life- of whom shall I be afraid?
When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh,
when my enemies and my foes attack me,
they will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me,
even then will I be confident.

One thing I ask of the Lord,
this is what I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all of the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
and to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in His dwelling;
He will hide me in the shelter of His tabernacle
and set me high upon a rock
Then my head will be exalted
above the enemies who surround me;
at His tabernacle will I sacrifice with
shouts of joy;
I will seing and make music to the Lord.

Hear my voice when I call, O Lord;
be merciful to me and answer me.
My heart says of you , "Seek His face!"
Your face, Lord I will seek.
Do not hide your face from me,
do not turn your servant away in anger;
You have my helper.
Do not reject me or forsake me,
O God my Savior.
Through my father and mother forsake me,
the Lord will receive me.
Teach me your way, O Lord;
lead me in a straight path
because of my oppressors.
Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes,
for false witnesses rise up against me,
breathing out violence.

I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord."

This is one of my favorite Psalms. In fact I think the book of Psalms is my favorite in general- there are so many that are uplifting and encouraging, and we all need encouragement.

I may be scarce the next couple of days as I will become immersed in the details of getting a garage sale together. Have a good weekend everyone!

September 27, 2007

Yard Sale Madness

I am in the middle of sorting through all of our stuff. My sister and I are having a combined yard sale this Saturday at my house, which I didn't intend to have until next month. However, I guess the sooner the better but I sure am tired!

We have a 'spare' living room that we don't know what to do with so that is where all of the boxes and piles of things are living. I did not realize how much clothing I had stored away- all things that were given to me! There are massive amounts of clothes from newborn to size 7 in girls, all very nice items, plus some adult clothes. The best thing about doing this now is that I found all the fall/winter clothes from last year, and they all fit my girls! I don't have to buy or sew anything for them unless I really want to. There were even plenty of shoes for them all! And it was all in my own house and I didn't realize it! So, now I can focus on clothes for myself and making things for the house. (curtains, pillows etc. which I am decorating my house for fall including making curtains and I plan to take pictures to show soon)

Another thing that is going on is the last week or so I have had 'episodes' of feeling very weak and drained. Sometimes I feel panicky and have headaches too- but it only lasts from 20-30minutes. Tuesday it lasted a long time and I was getting worried. I think it was due to taking a vitamin that's almost expired and maybe drinking too much coffee. (I drink less than two cups per day, but still...) Yesterday I drank decaf and I was fine, and today I made Irish Breakfast tea, fully caffeinated, two cups, and just started to feel a bit shaky. I am trying to make sure I'm eating protein and often enough. I haven't been taking vitamins for a long time, just because I'm forgetful about it and I don't like taking horse pills! I am prone to fainting, so maybe I just need some extra iron or something.

A few years ago I heard about something called glyconutrients. It's a breakthrough in wellness products and here is the basic idea- each of our cells need 8 essential sugars to be able to communicate with other cells in our body. We don't get these sugars in our diets anymore because fruits and veggies are no longer ripened on the vine before sold and eaten. So, the company Mannatech has figured out how to get these glyconutrients into a supplement form. I have read and heard so many amazing accounts of how these nutrients have helped heal. It is a food, so it's not like a magic pill or anything, and they are feeding the cells which then can work properly and your body's own healing process can take place. Make sense?

I actually found online somewhere a little girl who had Down's syndrome and began taking the glyconutrients. Many of her health issues resolved (asthma and things like that) and several years later, her FACE looked normal!! I couldn't believe the pictures. So anyways, we ordered some glycobears for Leiah in May. She would take two a day if I remembered. I don't know if it helped her or not, but when I took her back to the eye specialist he said her right eye wasn't crossed anymore. When he saw her in April it was crossed, and when he saw her in August it wasn't.

Anyways, Matt and I just haven't been feeling well lately. I mean we are healthy, just we feel run down a lot of the time and have some other issues. We have a cabinet full of supplements and try to eat well, yet we're not feeling like we want to. So we've decided to give these products a try, at least for me and Leiah first.

The downside to glyconutrients is the cost. It is very costly, but the idea is that if that is the only thing we need- no vitamins or other supplements, then it really balances out overall. We'll see. I am planning to place an order today so Leiah and I can get started.

By the way, I found the article about the girl with Down's that is now better here.

September 26, 2007

My Modest Dress Journey

(get this print at

I have been thinking a lot about feminine dress lately. Namely, wearing only dresses. I don't remember exactly where I was, but I know that it was on the internet through Ladies Against Feminism that I first learned about modest and feminine dress. It was such an epiphany- I mean, I had never heard about modest and feminine dress before- at all! As I began to learn more I became very convicted, and then frustrated. How was I going to change my wardrobe? I didn't know how to sew, was a weird size, didn't have a lot of money to spend on clothes and I had a 19 month old and an 8 month old.

But, it was in my heart to change. My mom sort of pushed me into sewing, and after several blunders I started to understand the process. I started making clothes for my girls and began attempting to make some for myself. I've gradually either made or bought skirts and dresses over the past three years. However lately, my attitude has changed. As I've been seeing a lot of other moms when taking my daughter to preschool or when going to MOPS, they all look the same. The uniform is blue jeans, capri pants, knit tops (some are quite tight and low cut) and tennis shoes or flip flops. (I do love flip flops though)

In my mind I reason, 'Well, they dress like that and they look fine.' 'It sure would be easier for me to just wear what the stores carry.' ' Maybe it doesn't really matter what we wear, God is concerned with a right and obedient heart.' No one I know or see dresses femininely. Most ladies I know do try to be modest, but as I've been learning, pants can't really be considered that modest.

Thanks to a link on Candy's site, I started reading the articles on feminine dress. And wouldn't you know, those just happen to be the very first things I ever read about modest dress. Monday I was really struggling- I was tired of trying to look nice and wear dresses all the time, I wanted to do what everyone else did because it was easier and I wouldn't stick out. So I really started praying about it and made time to read those articles about modest dress.

It is very eye-opening. One of my main reasons for dressing modestly, was for the sake of others. I can't get specific, but someone very very close to me has always had a hard time with lust. In this day I almost can't blame them- everywhere you look women are exposing all they got. I don't want to cause Christian men to stumble, I don't want to tempt other women's husbands. I want men to be able to go to church and be safe from all of that. As I sit and wait my turn to pick up Alexa, I see other moms and grandmothers going in the church to get their children, and you know what I notice first? Their midsection and rears! I didn't think it was true at first, but that is the first thing I notice, not their face. I don't want someone else's first sight of me to be my leftover baby belly and surplus rump! How nicely a flowy skirt or dress would skim over those areas.

Now I'm taking an even deeper look at the issue, because I have three daughters to raise. I am their example and if it's better to be modest than hip, then I want to teach them that. It is better to do what the Bible says than what the world says. Now I have to live it out before them. I am still struggling a little- I have a rebellious attitude flaring up at me, and I'm trying to crush it with the Word of God. I don't look forward to dealing with other people in this area, but this could be an avenue to sharing the Gospel. It's really not about me and what I would like best, but about what would glorify the Lord and lead others to Him. Big change.

I am trying to decide if we should get rid of all pants, or keep a pair for each person in case we have a sudden blizzard or some other strange circumstance. I'm still chewing on it. If anyone is interested here are some of the articles I read.

The Sin of Bathsheba

Let's Talk Modesty

Bible Guidelines About Clothing

September 25, 2007

My Week of Feminine Dress revisited

I sort of participated in Candy's week of feminine dress, well I did mine a little while ago. Anyways, I'm reposting it all in one post so she can link to it from her site.

The Early Morning

"Reading by the Window"

For a long time I have wanted to be able to get up early. A few years ago I happened on a website called Laine's Letters. I was so inspired by this woman who made herself get up at 4am every morning to have fellowship with the Lord and then get a big start on her day. But...getting up early means you have to go to bed early, and well, when you have a lot of small children the time when they are asleep is when you can get to certain things you couldn't while they were awake. So it's always been hard to make myself go to bed early.

When Sarah was a little baby, she would wake up at 6-6:30 EVERY morning to eat. So I would end up staying up. I could get a good breakfast on the table, have some computer or Bible reading time and get started on other things around the house. After she started sleeping later, I was still waking up that early! This went on until the past summer. For some reason I slept till Matt would wake me up.

Recently, I've really been wanting to be able to get up early. Not dragging myself out of bed, but actually waking on my own and ready to get up :) A couple of times I've been able to do it the past week or so. I've actually started praying that I would wake up early, and this morning I woke up before 5:30. I laid there a bit thinking about what all I could do, then I got up. I went to the kitchen started the coffee pot, turned my oven on and mixed up the muffin batter I had soaking overnight and popped them in the oven. I got my cup of coffee and went to the recliner and read John 17 till the end of the book. It was only 5:50 then, so I actually had time to sit and pray :) Then I wrote an email and went on with my regular morning routine.

I would like to have enough time to exercise too, which means I will have to get up earlier, just because it's easier without children around and at night I'm pretty tired and want to be with my dear husband. However, my main goal for the early morning was time with the Lord. This has been such a hard thing for me to do since I've had little ones. I rarely ever have 'quiet time', and sadly, only read my Bible a few times a week. But all the years of Bible teaching are stored up in my heart, so God recalls those things to mind often. Still, I realize that lately I have not been exhibiting the fruits of the Spirit, and I know I need to change.

September 24, 2007

Daily Routines etc.

It's amazing how often I have to change my 'housekeeping routine'. I had a completely different one for the summer and as life has changed again, so does my routine.

I observed the flow of things in our home after school started, and found that I should go back to the Flylady system. She focuses more on routines and babysteps at a time rather than an all out schedule. My oldest two have been fighting A LOT! By the time my husband would get home we would ALL be crying. So, I've come to realize with the help of my husband that we will be ok if I don't cook beautiful perfect meals every night and that I should try to get all of my work done early in the day before Leiah gets home from school. This way I can focus just on the children.

Mondays and Fridays I am at home with Alexa (3yrs) and Sarah (18months). Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday I take Alexa to preschool for the morning and pick her up. Since I live close to the school, I have about two hours before I need to pick her up.
So this is my plan:

Monday: Laundry day (actually I start Sunday night)
I will do at least 3-4 loads of laundry including bedding
wipe down washer/dryer and sweep in there
Home blessing: spot mop, spot vacuum, change trashes, clean sinks/toilets, tidy up from weekend

Tuesday: dust, windex screens/windows as needed, wipe down frequently touched surfaces, vacuum all the house
clean out refrigerator
plan meals/make grocery list

Wednesday: Groceries and run errands
do any laundry if necessary
work on sewing projects

Thursday: Kitchen Day
bake bread/cookies etc., make kombucha, soak legumes/flour/grains, make stock/cook meat and freeze
wipe down appliances, clean microwave, stovehood etc.

Friday: Finish the laundry for the week
clean tub and shower
work on decluttering/organizing or any other projects around the house

I have no plan for the weekends except to maintain what I've already worked on.

I have several daily routines going so I'm not going to list it all. Basically I plan to get most of my work done before lunch, and definitely done before 3pm, when my oldest gets home so I can devote my time and energy towards the girls.
This will include:
doing cleaning and laundry (I'm terrible at getting it put away!)
cooking dinner
working on whatever projects I need to do
running errands

However, my sister and I decided to have a yard sale at my house this coming Saturday, so I've been sorting through all kinds of stuff this morning. I plan to give the girls a cleaning job to do later in the day so we can get the Home Blessing done. I am in the process of cooking dinner now at 1:25pm. (Remember tuna casserole, corn on cob, probably a salad, and garlic bread)

My goal is to have time to teach the girls how to play with each other and do a special activity with them. We are also going to start having 'Family Time' in the evening with Daddy. Before we just kinda winged it. We are getting rid of satellite TV, so we will no longer be vegged in front of the tube. Here is my plan for weekly evenings:

Monday:- Read books
Tuesday: Walk the neighborhood
Wednesday: music- Daddy with guitar, sing songs etc.
Thursday: movie night
Friday: Game or go to park depending on weather
Saturday anything goes :)
Sunday we're so tired we just lay around

September 20, 2007

Menu Plan

Here is the menu plan from today to next Wednesday


Today: ham and cheese egg casserole, fried potatoes, cinnamon-honey toast on homemade bread

Friday: macaroni-tomato-beef (I think it's called American Chop Suey) and salad

Saturday: BBQ chicken pizza (I will slow cook the chicken in my crockpot all day and make homemade crust, then top with bbq sauce, chicken, red onion, bell pepper and pineapple- never made it before but it sounds good.) salad and maybe a dessert like brownies/cookies

Sunday: slow cooker chicken coconut soup (from Nourishing Traditions) veggies and Ranch dressing

Monday: tuna casserole, corn on the cob

Tuesday: Meatloaf, scalloped potatoes, steamed and buttered broccoli

Wednesday: Lentil stew, salad, cornbread, dessert (probably homemade pudding)

**we drink water, kids have milk, and sometimes I make iced tea- sweetened of course

Breakfasts and lunches are hard for me to plan- I just go with what I feel like. This is a general plan though:

Today: pancakes (from Hodgson Mills' pancake mix), fried turkey ham

Friday: overnight soaked baked oatmeal casserole, bananas, yogurt

Saturday: experiment with some buckwheat flour- soaked buttermilk buckwheat waffles, maple syrup, ham and maybe some eggs. (Matt favors eggs for breakfast)

Sunday: fried eggs, buttered toast

Monday: overnight soaked oatmeal, toast

Tuesday: scrambled eggs with cheese and toast

Wednesday: Homemade bagels with ham and cheese

**breakfasts are always served with either milk or orange juice and coffee


Today: tuna sandwiches, cheetos (BAD) and homemade banana cake

Friday: hot dogs, leftover chips and dip from a cookout, apple slices

Saturday: probably leftovers

Sunday: we eat lunch with my parents

Monday: egg salad sandwiches, pretzels, mandarin oranges

Tuesday: leftover tuna casserole and veggies, apple sauce for kiddies

Wednesday: peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for kids, leftovers for me, carrot sticks, yogurt

**lunches are served with apple juice or water

My Grocery List

I'm copying Candy and posting my grocery list and the cost for this week. I went yesterday afternoon to our local Brookshires, a grocery store chain that started here in Texas and now there are over 100 stores in Oklahoma, Texas, Arkansas, Louisiana some other states. My husband also works for this company, so I shop there even though it is more costly than Wal-Mart.

My goal too is to be under $100 for my family of five. My husband went to the store Sunday night to get a few items, and I don't know how much he spent, so I'm not counting that :) My total for yesterday was $93.31. Here's the list:

5lbs russet potatoes $1.50

Chef Boyardee dinosaur pasta (special treat) $.79

1 Gallon organic whole milk $4.79

12 pack toilet paper $3.51

Buttermilk $2.79

3lbs ground turkey @ $1.59 per lb

breadcrumbs $1.55

Coffee creamer $1.69

2 cans crushed tomatoes $.75 each

2 cans diced tomatoes $. 75 each

2 cans mandarin oranges $.50

1 can coconut milk $2.25

1 large can pineapple chunks $.79

$5 of Gerber graduate items for baby

sandwich baggies $2.99

1 small tomato paste $.59

1 bag brown rice $2.00

BBQ sauce $.95

4 pack flavored natural yogurts (for dh and on sale) $1.50

organic ground coffee $7.73 maybe I will drink less since it's more costly...

1 whole chicken $3.61

1 box butter $2.49

1 loaf whole wheat bread $1.79

1.5lbs broccoli crowns $2.25

4 packages ramen noodles @ $.13 each

2 small cans of tuna @$.65 each

1 box whole wheat organic spaghetti $1.99

1 box whole wheat organic macaroni $1.99

1 package of hot dogs $1.99

a turkey ham $4.34

4lbs of green cabbage $1.93 (I'm planning to try real saurkraut with this)

1 bag spinach for salad $2.99

2lbs bananas $1.01

12 ears of frozen corn on the cob approx. $3.50

1 cream of mushroom soup $.79 (I hardly ever use this stuff!)

1 bag frozen peas $1.19

Gala apples $2.70 for about 2lbs

2 green bell peppers $1.78

1 dozen free range eggs $1.59 ( I already had a dozen and a half from dh's trip)

I always buy frozen juices, carrots, celery, onions etc., but my husband had gotten those Sunday along with Maple syrup and some things for Leiah's school lunches. Altogether it would be over $100. Plus he went to our health food store the other day and bought whole milk yogurt, oats, coconut oil and some supplements. I don't know what that amount was either, probably $50, but we only go once a month.

And Wuv, Twoo Wuv...

A week ago my husband was out of town on business. I hate being apart- everything goes downhill! Maybe it's because my kids are still so little and helpless...and destructive! Anyways, when he arrived last Thursday my lentil soup for the feast was burning, my challah bread dough was overflowing in the stove, I was throwing toys into the toy box and crying and while all the girls were crying with me. Did I mention I can't sleep when he's away?

He took the older two in their room and got them changed into pjs while I took Sarah and got her changed. Then he and the other two came in with these flowers and a perfect, sweet card. It was like healing balm to my soul!

I have to say, marriage wasn't at all what I thought it would be. Some things were very hard to learn, after all I never lived with anyone else but my parents before we married. He had been on his own for years. We've been stretched a lot in our six years together, but I thank God that I married someone who is willing to change, as in allowing God to mold him into what He wants. He cares so deeply for me and is so willing to jump on board with any idea I might have. (like the Feast and the girls' mural) Only recently have we really come to understand our different roles in marriage and how they work together. Our relationship is so much better than when we first began, even though I couldn't imagine it getting any better at the time.

I am so happy to know that I really do have, in the words of the priest on the Princess Bride, "Twoo Wuv" -True Love that is :)

September 19, 2007

New Birth

"Likewise you also, reckon yourselves to be dead indeed to sin, but alive to God in Christ Jesus our Lord. " Romans 6:11

My friend Amanda was baptized on Sunday in one of the member's swimming pool. (we don't have a baptistry at church) Though she has messed up since she became a Christian, she has most assuredly put to death the old and is now 'born of water and the Spirit'.

Happy birthday Amanda! I'm so proud of you!!

September 18, 2007

Ok, I can't help but post more pictures of our church feast. It was such a labor of love and sort of 'birth to my baby' so to speak. I wanted to describe what we did to decorate too. We took some large cardboard boxes, and painted with a dry brush and brown paint to make it appear textured. Then we painted the brick marks. Matt had the idea of printing a picture of some place in Israel onto a transparency for the overhead projector, and projecting it onto the 'window' of cardboard to make it look as if we were looking out on the city of Jerusalem. We found a thin plastic sheet of tablecloth material and stretched it taut on the window opening and it worked GREAT!!!

Of course no one took a picture of that, but you can barely see it behind me and my dear husband Matthew, who is very much in character. He also rigged up a 'ceremonial washing' cart with a pot, pitcher of water and bowl of soap. Here he is helping people to wash their hands before we partake of the meal. (my apron must have been poofed out, because I look rather pregnant here, and I'm NOT!!)

We also bought some wall sconces and attached them by the windows (which we covered with more painted cardboard) and lit candles there. I had the music from Ben-Hur playing which was perfect. Matt found some actual oil lamps in the style of the time of Jesus on the internet. However when they came in the mail we found out we'd been a bit deceived- they were tiny! They did actually burn the olive oil and added an interesting touch to the table. You can see them more clearly on the pictures in the below post. I can't resist adding a picture of my best friend Amanda. (the young lady on the left)
Also, the room was very dim, with just the candlelight and the light from the overhead, but this camera must have had a bright flash! Oh well, wish you all could have been there to really see it :)

September 17, 2007

I was tagged!

1)What is your school name and why?Uumm, well right now it's Mineola Independent School District and First Baptist Playschool.

2)How is your weather today? Around 75 degrees and the sun is rising

3)What steals your joy? When I feel overwhelmed about my duties and my kids are out of control

4)Name five blessings you received this week.
1. I got to have a good conversation about Leiah with her teacher at school at her Open House.
2. When my husband arrived home after his trip he brought me roses and a beautiful card.
3. I got to see the fruition of my vision of the Feast and everyone loved it.
4. I had many people tell me over and over again what a wonderful job I did and that they wanted to send me and Matt on dinner dates :)
5. My best friend was baptized yesterday- in a swimming pool- and her non-believing parents and husband actually came to witness it.

6) Who in the Bible do you think are most like?
I am a split personality of Martha and Mary- before children I was a Mary, sitting at Jesus' feet and paying attention to nothing else. Now I'm more a Martha busy all over and frustrated because no one helps. I'm really trying to achieve balance :)

7)The passage of scripture you read last:
John 12

8) Have you ever praised God for something weird?
Definitely! Thank you Lord for changing the greenlight to red! (weird- but it was a scary situation)

9) If you were making a greeting card for God what would it say.
A greeting card just wouldn't be enough.

10) What is the best miracle God has performed in your life, or what is your favorite answered prayer? This is hard- probably my oldest daughter's life. She was in so much danger in utero, and we really had no idea until a few months ago when we found out she had Trisomy 9. Everything about her is a miracle.

11)what is the most fun thing you have done lately.
going to the beach.

12) How did you choose your screen name
I had probably either just watched Anne of Green Gables or read one of the books and it was on my mind. Deep down I want to live there even though it doesn't exist :(

And so now I tag Lori.

Feast Pictures

Note** I just added the few pictures that I took before everyone arrived. Unfortunately it was so crazy I didn't get a good room shot of the whole room. I will have more pictures later after our Pastor's wife emails them to me. Be sure to click on the pictures below- you can see a lot more when it opens into a larger picture.

September 15, 2007

So how did it go?

Yesterday was our church's Biblical Feast. I hit the floor at 6:30am and was almost running till 9pm last night. I am beat. But, all the hard work paid off. Everything came out great and everyone had a wonderful time. Fortunately, our church is very small, and only about half of the people came, so that was about 20 people or so, not including kids. I had tons of leftover food.

Problems we encountered:
While thawing out the gallons of soup I had made I somehow burned it. I did this Thursday night and had to start over Friday morning.

Our fellowship hall used to be shed and only has two window units for air conditioning. While it wasn't terribly hot, the way we had things decorated the kitchen was blocked off, and I was so hot. My fan wasn't doing much at all.

My husband and I kept forgetting to bring or buy something, so we made lots of trips to the store and home.

About an hour before the dinner, my mom came with the girls, and we were all busy, so when I opened the oven door I didn't realize baby Sarah was right there and she planted her hand face down on the hot door. She screamed so hard for so long that my mom just took her and my oldest home. None of my other kids had ever done that, so I'm not suprised, but it was just too much. I hate that my mom missed it :(

September 13, 2007

My brain hurts to think...I woke up to a strange noise and the dog barking at 3:30am. I have no idea what it was, but my imagination was running wild and I was definitely praying the 91st Psalm. After my heart stopped racing and I checked all the rooms in the house I tried to go back to sleep. It took awhile, maybe 5am? My girls were awake and staring at me by 6:30. That was startling too.

However the Lord is gracious because I've been able to complete my tasks for tomorrow. I will have my husband home soon and all day tomorrow and I'm sure that will help my thinking as well.

I have a busy afternoon of making bread and baklava and various other things. I happened on a blog last night that really blessed me and stirred my heart, here. She has many interesting things to read about.


September 12, 2007


I'm tired. I don't sleep well when my husband is gone, so to compensate I stay up later so I know I will actually sleep. 6 hours just isn't enough for me, at least not several days in a row. Plus I get up by 6:30 am to get my girls ready for school. I can definitely see the beauty of homeschooling in this area-you can start at what time you want each day.

Since I have the dinner at church this week, I opted for convenience foods. So far we've eaten, instant flavored oatmeal, frozen whole wheat waffles, tuna helper(which they all loved) and nutrigrain bars. Also orange juice from the refrigerated section, bagels and flavored cream cheese. I've tried to balance it with plenty of fat (whole milk, butter..) and either raw or steamed veggies and raw fruit. Oh well, it's just for a few days. Tomorrow we will probably eat cereal from Kashi and frozen ravioli. It's strange to cook this way- I'm so used to starting from scratch.

It's amazing how when your husband is gone you lose motivation to work on the house. I guess because the kids don't have high expectations and don't care it lowers my standards. Not that my husband wants me to keep a perfect house and make grand meals, it just feels different without him. I did do an Emergency quick clean yesterday, which helped, but the laundry needs some work.

Well, sorry I'm not very interesting today. My nephew and niece and my mom are here today unexpectedly, so I won't be taking a nap or getting much done. I'm too tired to!

September 11, 2007

Nothing on my mind to blog about till I saw this...

YOUR ROCK STAR NAME: (first pet & current car),
Corky Tahoe

2.YOUR GANGSTA NAME: (fave ice cream flavor, favorite cookie),
Neopolitan Biscotti

3. YOUR “FLY Guy/Girl” NAME: (first initial of first name, first three letters of your last name),

4. YOUR DETECTIVE NAME: (favorite color, favorite animal),
Red Dog

5. YOUR SOAP OPERA NAME: (middle name, city where you were born),
Ann Tyler

6. YOUR STAR WARS NAME: (the first 3 letters of your last name, first 2 letters of your first),

7. SUPERHERO NAME: (”The” + 2nd favorite color, favorite drink),
The Blue Iced Tea

8. NASCAR NAME: (the first names of your grandfathers),
Jerald Nolan

9. WITNESS PROTECTION NAME: (mother’s & father’s middle names ),
Sue Samuel

10. TV WEATHER ANCHOR NAME: (Your 5th grade teacher’s last name, a major city that starts with the same letter),
Principe Pasadena

11. SPY NAME: (your favorite season/holiday, flower).
October Rose

12. CARTOON NAME: (favorite fruit, article of clothing you’re wearing right now + “ie” or “y”)
Strawberry Shirty

13. HIPPY NAME: (What you ate for breakfast, your favorite tree),
Burrito Crepe Myrtle

14. YOUR ROCKSTAR TOUR NAME: (”The” + Your fave hobby/craft, fave weather element + “Tour”),
The Reading Sunset Tour

September 10, 2007

This morning I got up early to see my husband off to his work trip. Since I got an early start I had time to watch a program called Believer's Voice of Victory by Kenneth Copeland and his wife. I grew up listening to and watching him and what he says is definitely trustworthy as it's the Word of God. This week is their 40th anniversary since the ministry started and their kids are hosting the show, talking about the beginnings of the ministry and what life was like growing up.

It didn't seem like much and wasn't very gripping, but as they talked I thought how awesome it must before for Kenneth and Gloria Copeland to see their children- all of them- sitting their proclaiming God's truth and recalling all the memories of their life as young children in the Evangelical ministry. Tears just started falling because I so dream for my girls to be strong and confident in His Word and in a Walk with the Lord. In my mind envisioning my girls talking about their parents and how they were raised for Jesus just brought such deep emotions and unexpected tears.

Sometimes it seems like we just aren't doing much for the Lord. We aren't in a major world ministry like the Copelands. We aren't pastors or missionaries. My husband is the worship leader and I the piano/backup singer- but our church usually has like 30 people in it, most of which are kids under age 5. It's not like we're anything special other than having some musical ability. Even then God blesses us because we never have time to practice- we arrive and go! I get so busy looking at the things I don't do and the things I've messed up on that I can't see anything I'm doing right.
Awhile back I was struggling and a dear sister in our church that is so sensitive to the Holy Spirit felt I was struggling. She gave me a hug and the Spirit gave her a word for me- that I was pleasing in God's sight, that He was pleased with all my efforts and my heart. I have to make myself recall that often.
But, I know that we are where we are because this is God's plan and purpose for us. Only a few are to be world evangelists, which is fine with me :) That's not my heart's desire at this point.
I have come to the knowledge that loving and caring for my husband and children is a ministry unto itself, and a worthy one. So many Christian homes are not treated the same as a special ministry, I aim to make a difference in our home. I am able to extend hospitality to others because I am home and have more time to do so than if I were in the midst of a large ministry. There are so many blessings about being a homemaker, and I truly am enjoying living it.

If you are interested in Kennthe Copeland and his ministries go to
You can actually watch the shows on there as well. They also send out a free monthly magazine which is truly wonderful.They are such warm and friendly people and always have something from the Lord. I hope you are blessed by their ministry as much as I.

September 8, 2007


Just when you think I'm swamped mentally with all the preparations for the Feast and other things, my brain has already moved ahead to thinking of my daughters' birthday party. Leiah's birthday is January 3, and Alexa's is December 26th, so birthdays for them are way overshadowed by Christmas.

This year I thought to make it more memorable for them and easier on us financially, we would have it in the fall, like around October 20th. Autumn is my absolute favorite time of year and it usually doesn't get chilly until November. I was thinking of doing a Harvest/Day at the Carnival theme outdoors.

I thought if the kids wanted, they could wear costumes, since we don't do anything for Halloween yet kids still like to dress up and I don't see a problem with that. Pretending is fun! Then in our backyard I wanted to set up little Carnival booths. One could be a large mound of hay (we have friends with hay) with lots of little toys and candy etc. mixed all in it so they have to dig around and find the goodies. That's easy. Then I thought of turning my flower bed (since the flowers are dead or will be soon) into a Pumpkin Patch with small-medium sized pumpkins that the kids get to 'pick' and decorate with markers, glitter, and eyeballs etc. Our library did this for the kids last year and it was a lot of fun. Then I thought of some type of Ring Toss game, sort of like horseshoes, and they could win a little prize. (like a popcorn ball) Then maybe a pinata- I've never had one at the kids' party yet.

Does anyone have other game ideas? They need to be fairly easy for kids 6 years old and under, since that's the ages of all the kids we know. My mind just goes blank- I want it to be somewhat easy to make/set up and on the cheaper side.

Food: maybe mini pumpkin pies topped with whipped cream, apple slices and caramel dip, popcorn balls with peanut m&ms (I like that a lot too), grilled hot dogs (sausages for adults), grilled corn and chips. Or I might do cupcakes with red and orange frosting and fall decorations. My mom has a cupcake tree that holds the cakes and looks very cute. Could work for the pies too. Apple juice and spiced cider to drink of course.

I thought if we had it around 3-5pm it would give us plenty of time to set up and cover dinner too. I also plan to have my home decorated with fall things and simmering potpourri of course :) Not sure what I will do for table decorations, and with all the prizes and stuff I wouldn't need to do party favors.

Sounds like this party isn't really for the kids huh? I didn't do one for a couple of years, and would like to have people over to our new home that haven't been here before, so that's a good excuse. Plus they are getting old enough to remember things and really enjoy parties.

So anyways, if anyone has other ideas to add to the mix, comment away :)

Random things about me

Just thought I'd post a few things about myself that no one would ever guess I did :)

I once ate a crickett- on a nacho- on purpose :) Hey I was 12 and it was a dare!

In highschool I was Miss Athletic and played varsity volleyball (I am tall, major spiker) and track. Um,I'm not good at running, but I could sure hurl that discus and shotput :)

I did not learn to drive at all until right before my 16th birthday. I didn't even know how to turn the ignition :( That was not a fun learning experience and I would get lost so easily. It didn't help that my vehicle was a mile long truck.

I am the youngest- 5.5 years younger than my sister, and since she was too cool to play with me I was like an only child for awhile. Hence the reason I don't understand why my close in age children act the way they do.

In fifth grade I was taller than all the kids plus most of my teachers. I stuck out a little.

I still played with dolls of all sorts when I was 13 years old. (you might guess that one)

I don't enjoy rollercoasters and amusement parks, but if in a large group I can pretend to have fun.

I didn't know how to cook anything from scratch when I married. We ate lots of spaghetti and frozen pizza and boxed macaroni and cheese.

I taught myself how to make soap from lye and fat. I like getting dressed up in my old lab coat and goggles and mixing it all up like a scientist. This was a few months after I got married.

I have blessed to have travelled to New York City, Washington D. C., Holland, Paris, Seattle/Mt. Rainier, Victoria Island, Canada, Jamaica, Grand Caymen and Cozumel, Mexico. (all within the span of two years) Also Upper Michigan and all the states in between it and Texas several times and the coast of Florida.

I was face to face with Winona Ryder in Paris- it took me a minute to recognize her because she had long blond hair, and she's very short. We were in the same store.

I ate raw meat in Paris. It was supposedly 'cooked' in lemon juice and it was another dare. Yack.

My favorite movies are The Princess Bride, Anne of Green Gables and Avonlea of course, Dumb and Dumber and all Ace Ventura's, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Chronicles of Narnia, The Last Sin Eater, and Lord of the Rings Trilogy (well I like the first one best). There's a lot more but that's all I can think of.

My biggest food weakness is sweets. And breads, but I'm getting better.

I used to be a skateboarder- not great but that was my thing when Matt and I were 'just friends'. He was a rollerblader.

My mom is one of my bestest friends and always has been. We talk almost everyday and have fun together.

I loved absolutely everything about my wedding- EVERYTHING- it was so perfect- the weather and everything. Wish I could get pictures up for all to see- no scanner :(

The chores I used to hate most I really like now. They are doing dishes, vacuuming and ironing. I used to like laundry better than dishes and bathrooms better than vacuuming- not so anymore.

I enjoy almost all foods that I diskliked as a kid. If cooked the right way I like runny fried eggs, black eyed peas, greens like spinach etc., English peas, sweet potatoes and onions. Still don't like cantaloupe (big thing down here) or asparagus, no matter how many times I've tried them.

Well, that's all I have time for, there's plenty more. Hope this gives you an idea about what I'm really like :)

September 7, 2007


My honey cake did not turn out like I wanted- very dense like pound cake. So, I decided to try something else, and since baklava is a middle Eastern dessert I figured I should give it a try. I had been avoiding it because phyllo dough is tricky and it is time consuming.

Last night I made one and it took about 30 minutes to get everything prepped, assembled and in the oven. However, it was so worth it. WOW!

So here's the recipe:

1 16oz package of phyllo dough, found in the frozen foods section
1 lb of nuts- I used a combo of walnuts and almonds
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 cup butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1/2 c honey
vanilla extract
orange zest- optional

First you have to thaw the dough in the fridge overnight. Get the butter melted, and the nuts mixed with the cinnamon. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Get several wet paper towels or a wet tea towel to lay on top of the dough. Unroll on package of dough (they come in two 8oz packages) and lay flat on the wax paper it comes in. Then lay the wet towel on top to keep it from drying out.
Take a 9x13 pan, put two sheets of dough on and use a pastry brush to brush butter on top. Continue layering two sheets of dough and buttering until you have 8 sheets total. On top of the 8th sheet sprinkle 2-3 T nuts, then layer two sheets dough, butter, add nuts and continue tillyou run out of nuts. Then layer and butter 8 more sheets of dough on top. Here's the hard part- take a very sharp knife and cut 4 columns long-ways, like if you were cutting brownies or something. Then start cutting diagonally to make a diamond shape, or just cut across and make squares. It's tricky because the buttered dough sticks to everything. Next time I'll cut the dough first, and then butter the top.Put in oven for 40-50 minutes- until golden brown.
While the dessert is baking make the syrup. Combine sugar and water in saucepan and let simmer. The recipe said 20 minutes, BUT, I forgot and only cooked it for maybe 5 minutes because the dessert was going to get overcooked if I let it go the whole 20 minutes. Then I added the honey, orange zest and vanilla. When baklava is done, pour the hot syrup all over and let cool. It will look like too much liquid, but since everything is hot, as it cools it will absorb the sauce. After about 30 minutes it was cool enough to taste.

YUMMY!!! I didn't really taste the orange, so I might serve it with my homemade orange marmalade spooned on top. I guess I'll just have to test it later :)

September 6, 2007

Romantic Dresses for Baby

Here are the dresses I have been working on the last few days. All that is left is cutting the buttonholes- I have to wait till all children are asleep because that involves a sharp object. LOL.

My model was not cooperating so most of the 'live' shots aren't too good. She has the dress on over her clothes (shirt and capris) so it looks interesting. I altered the bodice a bit to make it one piece. This dress is pretty simple to make, and I'm no expert. You can see the original pattern here, just scroll down to the girls pattern.I can make dresses for us and curtains, pillows etc. but that's all. I'm not good at fitting myself either. Still learning after three years.

I didn't 'fancy' up these dresses or add trim since they are for play- these fabrics only cost $1 per yard, so that's about $2.50 for both dresses including thread and buttons.

September 5, 2007

Psalm 91 Testimonies

I wanted to include some of the testimonies that were given in the book we've been looking at about Psalm 91. Most of them are very, very long, so I am only going to include the shorter ones.

Psalm 91 Testimony from Nazi Prison Camp

"Many people came to know and trust the Lord during World War II. One was an Englishman who was held in a German prison camp for a long period of time. One day he read Psalm 91. ' Father in Heaven, ' he prayed, ' I see all these men dying around me, one after the other. Will I also have to die here? I am still young and I very much want to work in Your kingdom here on earth.'
He received this answer:' Rely on what you have just read and go home!' Trusting in the Lord, he got up and walked into the corridor toward the gate. A guard called out, 'Prisoner, where are you going?'
' I am under the protection of the Most High,' he replied. The guard came to attention and let him pass, for Adolf Hitler was known as ' the Most High.' He came to the gate, where a group of guards stood. They commanded him to stop and asked where he was going. ' I am under the protection of the Most High.' All the guards stood at attention as he walked out the gate.
The English officer made his way through the German countryside and eventually reached England, where he told how he had made his escape.
He was the only one to come out of that prison alive. "
That was my favorite- how awesome!!!

Another WWII testimony

"Sergeant George Harold Barclay served in World War II in General Patton's 320th Infantry of the U.S. Army, Company E. Continuous fear eliminated any expectation of ever returning to hjis wife and baby daughter. The same fear kept his wife terrified when she would see a Western Union truck delivering letters of war casualties. Once a Western Union messenger came to her door by mistake and she said that she froze with terror. Sometimes as many as six weeks would go by without a letter, during which time the news reported that half of Harold's company had been killed. The Battle of the Bulge saw his whole outfit cut off from the rest of the army.
Finally, however, a letter came from Harold saying that God had given him Psalm 91, and he now had absolute certainty that he would come home without even an injury. So medics said they needed volunteers to go to the front lines to bring back the injured, Harold volunteered and made repeated trips under extreme enemy fire, saving many lives.
The citation for the Bronze Star Award that he received said 'for bravery,'but Harold insisted that it wasn't bravery, since he knew nothing would happen to him because of the covenant promise God had given him in Psalm 91. When he came home without a scratch, it was obvious that angels had indeed borne him up in their hands, allowing no evil to befall him."

John G. Lake's testimonial
This is exactly what the author says:

" I have often read accounts of the time when John G. Lake took fraught (foam) from the bubonic plague in his hand and placed it under a microscope, where poeple watched in amazement as the germs literally died instantly on contact with his hand. I was puzzled for years, wondering what kind of anointing he possesssed to bring about that kind of supernatural phenomenon.
Nothing could have pleased me more than when I learned Mr. Lake's secret- his wholehearted belief in the Psalm 91 covenant umbrella of protection that God has provided for all of His children who trust His promise more than they trust in what they see and feel in this world.
On page 340 of the book John G. Lake: The Complete Collection of His Life Teachings, Mr. Lake made the statement that confirmed the secret to his supernatural protection- 'For many years God kept me so that sickness and death could not touch me, from the day that I saw in the ninety-first Psalm a man's privilege of entering into God, not only for healing, but health and having God and the life of God in every fiber of his being.'"

I hope that these snippets have helped in any way. If it's helped one person than it was worth it. I'm so glad to be able to share with the world God's truth.

There is sooooo much more in this book, yet it is small and easy to read. You can order the book from : The Peggy Joyce Ruth BETTERLIVING Ministries
1-877-97Books or 915-646-6894

Also you may order by mail: P.O. Box 1549, Brownwood, TX 76804-1549

There may even be a website you can order it from too. I haven't done any checking on it though.

A Good Report

I finally got to talk to my friend, Amanda, last night. She is doing very well and wants to get things right again. I made sure she understood that we all still love her and accept her and want to help her stay on the right path. You know, David sure did make a lot of mistakes in the Bible, yet God still called him a "Man after My own heart". She is much encouraged and did make it to her new job yesterday. Now if she can just get into her own house away from the belittling parents :)

Yesterday Alexa started preschool at a local church from 8:30-11am on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. I am so impressed with how organized and how neat everything looked. I can even drive thru the pick-up area to get her so I don't have to heft Sarah around and go in to get Alexa. She loved it of course and is excited to go back.

I've been sewing Sarah some new dresses from the Sensibility Romantic girls pattern- pretty easy since I modified it, only I made the dresses a little too short. Oh well, she's got the bloomers to wear too. I will have pictures up soon.

I found out my husband will be gone next Mon-Thursday- well of course! Something needed to happen the week of the church feast! Grrrr...I'm not sure how I'm going to do this, but I can't cancel it again. I will not allow myself to even think that. A couple of older ladies at church have offered to help me in whatever way possible, so if I can figure out something they can do than I will take them up on it. Today I am practicing recipes again- this time with the meat (I'm not doing lamb, too hard to find here) and veggies (honey glazed carrots and whole onions) and dessert. (honey cake) I may also make a meal for a friend who had a baby last week.

Busy and more busy...

I plan to create a new daily/weekly schedule soon and post that as well, in time.

Anyways, that's what's going on now.

September 4, 2007

The Princess Room

I wanted to show what we've done to the girls' room so far. My husband and my friend Amanda and I all painted the room pink last weekend. Then yesterday Matt began working on the mural. I thought I was going to get to help paint and draw, but he's doing so well with it I don't want to mess it up. I guess I'll do Sarah's room on my own :)

Pretty good for freehand huh? Here is what the rest of the room looks like. There is much to be done still- the frilly canopies and window treatments (lots of pink tulle and ribbons), I need to make some room darkening drapes too, spray paint the tall skinny dresser gold, and make the bedding- which will be princess fleece tied together. I have also found some inexpensive princess tents and will be getting one to go in the corner. We plan to paint a castle, ocean, and Cinderella carriage traveling the pathway. The great thing about a mural is you can work on it gradually- you just have small brushes to clean up and small bottles of paint- not the big rollers and paint cans to deal with!

We're thinking of painting the closet doors to look like a mirror with a princess looking in. We'll see...
The fun thing about girls is I get to live through them and do the things I would have loved when I was little :)

September 3, 2007

Prayers, friends

I am heavy hearted today. A year ago my best friend was addicted to crack cocaine, and God miraculously delivered her from it. She has then plunged into life as a Christian, has read the Bible almost all the way through, came to church, and even got up in front of everyone at church to give her testimony a few weeks ago. Her mother has been verbally abusing her and tearing her down these last couple of months (she's obviously not a believer) and she's done well turning the other cheek. Her husband also left her almost a year ago and has no intention of returning. All she's had is me, my family and my mom to help her and guide her.

While I was gone last week, something terrible must have happened, because she went back to the drugs. What upsets me most is that I know she is feeling so guilty and terrible, and I don't want her to think I hate her. No one knew where she was for three days, and this morning my mom called to tell me she was at her house. (she lives next door to my mom) She left a note on her door that she needs to sleep for awhile and will talk later.

I feel like the prodigal son's father- I don't care what you did just come home! I love you no matter what you've done- God delivered you before and He can do it again. We all make mistakes. All day yesterday and last night I've been waiting and praying and expecting the phone to ring. I won't know for sure what happened until later. I just ask for any prayers- I know she wants to live for Jesus and loves Him- I can't imagine what it's like to have been addicted to such a powerful drug. But God is bigger.

September 1, 2007


Ahh, the vacation...well, Matt and I didn't get much relaxing time, but we did have a lot of fun. The girls had a blast and all went well considering there were no naps for 4 days and we stayed up late and woke up we ate TERRIBLY!!!!! I am in the midst of getting rid of the sand that has managed to get everywhere, along with all the laundry and just putting things away. Here's the load of pictures from our trip.
Our first morning at the condo- eating breakfast and getting ready for our day.

Everyone seems to have a snarl here...

Matt takes building sand castles very seriously.

Matt is attempting to surf...
The girls had so much fun with the sand and the waves. Sarah would run into the waves and lay down so the water would go over her head! She thought it was fun! Needless to say I was constantly running after her. We tried putting her on a leash, but that did not work at all! LOL. Luckily, it was cloudy the first two days, so we didn't get any sunburns until the last day...while spray on sunscreen is convenient, you must be sure to reapply a lot! We're all toasted- except Leiah and Sarah.