Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Psalm 136

1 Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good.
His love endures forever.
2 Give thanks to the God of gods.
His love endures forever.
3 Give thanks to the Lord of lords:
His love endures forever.
4 to him who alone does great wonders,
His love endures forever.
5 who by his understanding made the heavens,
His love endures forever.
6 who spread out the earth upon the waters,
His love endures forever.
7 who made the great lights—
His love endures forever.
8 the sun to govern the day,
His love endures forever.
9 the moon and stars to govern the night;
His love endures forever.
10 to him who struck down the firstborn of Egypt
His love endures forever.
11 and brought Israel out from among them
His love endures forever.
12 with a mighty hand and outstretched arm;
His love endures forever.
13 to him who divided the Red Sea [a] asunder
His love endures forever.
14 and brought Israel through the midst of it,
His love endures forever.
15 but swept Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea;
His love endures forever.
16 to him who led his people through the desert,
His love endures forever.
17 who struck down great kings,
His love endures forever.
18 and killed mighty kings—
His love endures forever.
19 Sihon king of the Amorites
His love endures forever.
20 and Og king of Bashan—
His love endures forever.
21 and gave their land as an inheritance,
His love endures forever.
22 an inheritance to his servant Israel;
His love endures forever.
23 to the One who remembered us in our low estate
His love endures forever.
24 and freed us from our enemies,
His love endures forever.
25 and who gives food to every creature.
His love endures forever.
26 Give thanks to the God of heaven.
His love endures forever.

I read this scripture the other day and it so struck me that I came in and read and discussed it with my husband. It's a very good reminder that no matter where we are in our lives, at the highest of highs or the lowest of lows, His love endures forever! I hope that serves as encouragement. He has not forgotten us, His thoughts are toward us, He wants and knows what's best of us and He loves us more than we could ever think or imagine!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010


Two days before Christmas Kelsi had to have surgery on her ears. She has had hearing loss for some time and this doctor had been evaluating it regularly for a few months. He decided to do exploratory surgery and to repair whatever he could on her worst ear at that time. After surgery the doctor said that she did not have one big thing wrong, but three small things instead. She had negative pressure caused by fluid in her ears, a ring of calcification caused by past fluid build up and infections and a bone in her ear that should have been flexible was stiff, this was possibly hereditary or could be from the fluid as well. He scraped off the calcification, tapped the bone to chip away calcification and loosen it up and put tubes in both of her hears. If her left ear (the one he did the most work on) were to improve the most, he would go back and do the right ear later. He also said that he may have to change tubes out periodically and could possibly have to free that bone up ever so often as well.

Well, I took Kelsi back to the doctor today for her first hearing test since her surgery. The last time we saw the doctor he was amazed at how good her ears looked, but was not yet ready to test the hearing. Today he came in the room and as he looked down to read the report he began to shake his head. He then looked up at me and said, "God really helped us out here.". She is hearing as well as a newborn baby with VERY GOOD hearing! He then went back to read over her pre-op and surgical reports and began to get more and more excited. He used the word WOW several times. He said she will not require any further surgery in her right ear (most of what he did last time was in her left ear) and that by the time the tubes fall out her eustachean tubes will most likely have matured enough that she would not need a second set. As he began to leave the room he looked at me again and said, "This was Divine Intervention" what I did could not have produced results this good. His whole demeanor was different as he left. He was so excited. It was all I could do not to cry!!!! I knew that God could heal her and was believing for that healing, but never would I have imagined that her doctor would acknowledge Who healed her!

Thank you so much for your prayers. I hope this serves as proof to you all that God's promises are true, He loves us and cares about what we care about, He is moving and I am on the edge of my seat waiting see what He has in store!!!

To God Be The Glory!!!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Newest Etsy Purchase

I just bought 2 PDF dress patterns from Sweetie Pie Patterns on Etsy. She had a buy two special, I got them together for $7.00. You can see the patterns I bought HERE. I cannot wait to get the emails and for the girls and I to shop for fabrics for them. They look easy and very cute. The girls will wear a t-shirt with them and we may make dresses and shirts out of the pattern.

I'm also eyeing this REALLY cute skirt pattern.

Have I mentioned lately that I LOVE Etsy?!?!?!

Kool Aid Alternative

My kids love kool-aid, but I don't it's full of dyes, artificial stuff and sugar, YUCK! They also don't particularly like to drink water. One of my friends gave me this idea, although I do it a bit differntly than she does. Buy the canned frozen fruit juice concentrate, completely ignore the directions, put the juice in a gallon sized container and fill up with water. I then add a bit of Stevia (you could add whatever sweetener you prefer) for a little extra sweetness. It sort of tastes like fruit flavored water, I love it and so do the kids. It saves money because they're not drinking juice like crazy and it helps all of us with our daily water intake. So far I've used Passion Fruit (this was my friends recommendation, I use a bit more water than she does) and today I tried Pinapple, Orange, Apple juice. I plan to try it with other juices as well. It's been a HUGE hit around here. I'm pretty sure this will be a new staple for our household.

Casting Crowns ~ Always Enough

Friday, February 19, 2010

Being Painfully Real

One thing that I never want to do on my blog (or in life for that matter) is to appear fake. Make it look like everything is coming up daisies all day everyday. We all struggle and I went through a lot of years feeling like the only one that was, because no one around me was being real. They all looked perfect. Well, I am soooo far from perfect. The reality is that I have a blessed life. I have an amazing husband, wonderful children, great church, awesome friends, etc. But my husband and I disagree, my children need discipline, etc. This life is just not perfect. I say all that so that none of you will think that I'm depressed or something when my posts aren't all cheerful. They're just honest.

Today, I'm struggling. I'm sick of being fat. I cannot think about the way that I look or the way that I physically feel without tearing up. I hate to have my picture made. I look around a room to see if I'm the biggest woman there. I constantly pull at my shirts to make sure they're not hugging the fat. I look in the mirror and am mortified. What I see does not line up with how I feel like I look. I cannot believe that I am as big as I am. It's hard and it hurts. So here's my biggest frustration.......If it bothers me SO much, why can I not get motivated enough to actually do something about it?!?!?!?!

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Seems that my girls had a bit of a revelation yesterday. On Tuesday we all worked very hard on the house. We are all working to change habits and pick up after ourselves as we go and on Tuesday we worked hard to get their chore rooms into shape. So, yesterday as the girls are doing their chores I was hearing lots of comments on how much easier it was to do them, since they had been done well the day before. I've been trying to tell them for the longest time, if you'll just put it away when you are finished with it, there will be no mess. Finally seems they get that point. Now we all just have to work to stay consistent and the housework load is going to seem very light.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

No Idea What to Title This Post

I am having an about to scream moment. It has finally occurred to me that 2 out of my 3 children have to have their hands held through getting anything done. It's driving me batty. You'd think after dealing with one like that for 12 years I would have enough patience for it or at least know how to handle it. I'm so frustrated. I can't get them to complete their school work unless I hover and I sure can't get them to complete their chores without constant supervision. It seems sometimes that I'd be better off doing it myself, but that would teach them nothing. What are they learning by me walking them through every single process, every single day, over and over again? When they get into the world no one will do that for them. I don't feel like I'm doing them any favors, but if I don't do what I'm doing nothing gets done. Oh and on the nothing gets done front, no wonder I feel like I'm barely treading water most days. If I don't stay on top of them nothing that they need to do is completed, but if I do stay on top of them, most of what I need to do does not get completed. I struggle with whether this is a behavior problem or something else. I do believe there are some behavior aspects to it and I am trying to work on them. Please pray for me for the next couple of weeks as I work hard to get a handle on some issues in our home. It feels like right now all I'm doing is discipline and training. That's what happens when I become inconsistent and realize that I've got to reign things back in. In my defense the inconsistentcy began with all the crazy illness we've had and I just didn't get back on the bandwagon until I felt like I was going to go nuts in this house. So, that's my rant for today and what it all boils down to is that I cannot do this alone. I need Jesus to walk me through it or I will flub it all up royally and will struggle with sanity. I need Him to help me have peace in the process and to help me remember that these moments of discipline and training are eternal moments that will help them to become all that He desires for them to be. I also need to be alert to the lessons He's trying to teach me through all of this.

Maybe I just needed to vent, to get my thoughts in order. I love blogging......

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Kraft Foods

I had completely forgotten about Kraft Foods website, until one of my Facebook friends mentioned it. I just logged on and I LOVE it. I cannot believe I ever stopped using it. There are a TON of recipes. Most are budget friendly, have a reasonable number of ingredients, have easy to find ingredients and are simple to put together. You can put favorite recipes in your recipe box and you can even have it add the ingredients to a shopping list. I will definitely be using this a LOT. I've been in a huge cooking rut and have been trying to find some new healthier meals to make. I've already found some great salad ideas (thankfully everyone here LOVES salad) and some great soups, too.

You should hop right over to and find some new recipes for your family to try as well. I think you will LOVE it as well!


One of my blogger friends posts a TON of yummy recipe. I told the girls about this one and they wanted to try it, so we had it tonight for dessert. WOW! Huge hit. I'm wondering if I could try it with peanut butter cookies, too. You MUST go HERE for the recipe and then you have got to make them. Super easy and Super yummy. Can't beat that.

Fly Lady

A blogging/Facebook friend of mine has recently been using FlyLady to get her home in order. I tried this several years ago when my kids were much smaller and I had a not so lovely attitude. I'm thinking I'm at a point in my life now that I could really make a go of it and considering how much I'm wanting to get things in order I think this might just be a step in that direction. I will probably not follow it to a T, but try to fit it to our lifestyle, but it will surely help to get me on the right track. I was wondering if anyone else might want to jump on the bandwagon and let's hold each other accountable. You should really check it out.

Revised Chore Schedules for the Kiddos

This is a copy of the kids chore schedule that I just revised. They have checklists in each room, but do not currently have to check off what they have completed, but I will be revising those as well. They will have to check each thing off then let me know they are complete so that I can come check what they have done. This is an area that we have had problems with. Chores were not being done thoroughly and they are not staying on top of their zones each day. These schedules look pretty heavy, but they really are not. Mason doesn't have a lot of assigned chores, but he has to work alongside is Daddy and I often have him help me with extras as well. Patrick and I help them with the chores a great deal. We will take care of any laundry that does not get done and will do all the folding and hanging. He helps a lot with the kitchen in the evenings and I am constantly straightening countertops and tabletops. I will also be taking care of a thorough sweeping and vacuuming each day as well as meals, etc. If they do their chores well each day, their will be almost nothing for them to do the following day and even when they have big messes to clean they still have LOTS of free time. Hopefully we will stay on top of this and I will have time to work on some cleaning out and organizing in each room. I hope to take a room a week and get back on top of things. They will receive an added chore for not completing their chores or doing a poor job or if they are doing their regular chores well, they will be given the opportunity to do extra jobs for pay.

Weekly Chore Schedule

Monday – Before School
– Living Room and Bathroom
After school – Sort Laundry, Clean Toilet and Clean Your Room

Tuesday – Before School – Kitchen and Bathroom
After School – Wash 2 Loads of Laundry, Mop the Kitchen and Clean Your Room

Wednesday – Before School - Living Room and Bathroom
After School - Dust living room, Sort Laundry, and Clean Your Room

Thursday – Before School – Kitchen and Bathroom
After School - Wash windows in halls and stairs, wipe down front door, Wash 2 Loads of Laundry and Clean Your Room

Friday Before School - Living Room and Bathroom
After School - Wash windows in living room, Sort Laundry and Clean Your Room

Saturday – Kitchen, Bathroom, Wipe Down Kitchen Cabinets, Help With Laundry and Clean Your Room

Monday – Before School – Kitchen, Halls and Stairs
After school – Wash 2 Loads of Laundry, Organize Bookshelves in Hall and Clean Your Room

TuesdayBefore School – Living Room, Halls and Stairs
After School – Sort Laundry, Vacuum Baseboards, Around Furniture and Under Tables in Living Room and Clean Your Room

WednesdayBefore School – Kitchen, Halls and Stairs
After School – Wash 2 Loads of Laundry, Mop Halls and Stairs and Clean Your Room

ThursdayBefore School – Living Room, Halls and Stairs
After School - Wipe Down Walls of Bathroom and Clean Mirror, Sort Laundry and Clean Your Room

FridayBefore School – Kitchen, Halls and Stairs
After School – Wipe Down Appliances and Sliding Glass Door, Wash 2 Loads of Laundry and Clean Your Room

Saturday – Kitchen, Halls and Stairs, Clean Bathtub and Tub Walls, Help With Laundry and Clean Your Room

Before School
- Take Dirty Clothes to the Laundry Room and Put the Clean Silverware Away
After School - Take Out the Trash, Get the Clothes Out of the Dryer, Pick Up Your Shoes, Clothes and Toys from all the Rooms in the House and Clean Your Room.

Schedule for Helping with Supper
Monday – Kelsi
Tuesday – Keeli
Wednesday – Mason
Thursday – just Mom
Friday – Kelsi
Saturday – Keeli

Remember that these are your zones and you are responsible for making sure they stay cleaned and picked up all day. Make sure you check them before bed so they are ready for the next person the next day.

This all looks great on paper. We have not been great at following our schedules for long periods of time. I'm sure praying this time will be different. I really want all of my children to know how to keep a home well by the time they have a home of their own. It's really hard to teach that when you haven't figured it out for yourself....

Monday, February 15, 2010


It seems there need to be A LOT of changes going on around here. Changes in attitudes, behaviors, organization, time management, homeschooling, working, you name it. It also seems that there is not one of us in this house that doesn't need to be working on some of those things, especially me.

We've realized that we've let some things go with the kids, especially the youngest one, that we must get a handle on. Now don't get me wrong, we have AMAZING children, most people that know us would have no idea what needs tweaking, but God has revealed some things to us. The girls are usually pretty easy to bring around. They are older and really want to please the Lord (and us), so usually a conversation about the issue, what they should be doing differently and the potential consequence of not changing the behavior is enough to at least get them to work on it. My son, not so much, he's all boy and he's VERY busy and he thinks EVERYTHING is funny and we have really dropped the ball on a lot of things with him. Hubby and I plan to read (just as a refresher and to make sure we're on the same page) Kevin Lehman's book titled "Have A New Kid By Friday".

I am planning to re-read either The Excellent Wife or Created To Be His Helpmeet or both.

As far as Homeschooling goes. Things are mostly good. One daughter is finally caught up, the other is well on her way. The boy (as my husband often jokingly calls him) is a bit behind, but only for lack of attention span. Most of the revamping will be in his schooling. He's gonna need a lot more fun and a lot less workbook. I've also got to find more time to spend with all of them on their schooling, so the girls are not always having to do theirs alone and not always having to help Mason with his.

Work is improving, I still have a ways to go, but I am getting caught up. I plan to sit down tomorrow to try to figure out what else needs to be done to get me caught up and how long it might take that to happen. I then need to create some checklists to make sure that I don't overlook anything on my work days. It's hard to stay on top of all of it with all of life's distractions, so a checklist would be very helpful. I also plan to work on getting to the point that I'm only working 12-15 hours per week and getting all of those in two days, so I would have 5 days a week with no working. That would be FABULOUS!

I'm gonna try to get together a working schedule (or what I like to call order of events). We just seem so much more productive when we have one to go by. I also cooked some ground beef and put it in the freezer tonight. I'm planning on getting some more things like that done this week. I used to do a two week menu and go grocery shopping every two weeks. I also used to have a standing weekly plan for breakfast and lunch. I have got to get back to some of those things.

We've also got a lot of household projects to undertake in the near future. Gotta make a list of those, prioritize them and start pricing out the supplies.

So, to recap, things have gone a little wonky around here. My crazy work schedule, the added work of a new ministry, a ridiculous amount of illnesses, a complete lack of organization and time management have gotten us here and I have had ENOUGH! So here I go on a trek to get things here better than normal. I'll let you know how it goes!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Diaper Bags I Have Made

I'm trying to catch up on posting sewing pictures. I've made 4 diaper bags. The one below was my first. There is another one in another post (you can click on the sewing and embroidery label to see it). I also made one that I don't have a pic of. Someone else picked out the fabric and asked me to make it, so I was on a deadline and forgot to take the pic. The one below I made for my sweet niece who is now 1 and I used my old machine, which is why the embroidery is so small. This one is one of my favorites. I made it for my cousins little boy. I thought it turned out really cute, kind of looks beachy to me, too.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Poem

I ran into a stranger as he passed by,
"Oh excuse me please" was my reply.
He said, "Please excuse me too;
I wasn't watching for you."
We were very polite,
this stranger and I.
We went on our way and we said goodbye.
But at home a different story is told,
How we treat our loved ones,
young and old.
Later that day,
cooking the evening meal,
My son stood beside me very still.
When I turned,
I nearly knocked him down.
"Move out of the way,"
I said with a frown.
He walked away,
his little heart broken.
I didn't realize how harshly I'd spoken.
While I lay awake in bed,
God's still small voice came to me and said,
"While dealing with a stranger,
common courtesy you use,
but the family you love,
you seem to abuse.
Go and look on the kitchen floor,
You'll find some flowers there by the door.
Those are the flowers he brought for you.
He picked them himself:
pink, yellow and blue.
He stood very quietly not to spoil the surprise,
you never saw the tears that filled his little eyes."
By this time,
I felt very small,
And now my tears began to fall..
I quietly went and knelt by his bed;
"Wake up, little one, wake up," I said.
"Are these the flowers you picked for me?"
He smiled, "I found 'em, out by the tree.
I picked 'em because they're pretty like you.
I knew you'd like 'em,
especially the blue."
I said, "Son, I'm very sorry for the way I acted today;
I shouldn't have yelled at you that way."
He said, "Oh, Mom, that's okay.
I love you anyway."
I said, "Son, I love you too,
and I do like the flowers,
especially the blue."
I received this in an email. Not sure of it's origin, but I imagine that it's a bit convicting for most of us Moms. I pray today and everyday that we will each think before we speak and take time to look into the eyes of our children. That we will not get so wrapped up in busyness and the duties of being a wife and mother that we miss the tender moments with our children.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

2010 School Pictures

My 1st Etsy Listing

It's probably silly of me to even attempt this as busy as I am. I won't be adding much, if anything, else until life slows down a bit, but I was curious to see if this generate any interest.
We'll see!

Burp Cloths

I realized that I have posted very few of my sewing pics on here. I'm gonna try to get a lot of them posted in the next few days. Seems I posted most everything to Facebook. I'm trying to do MUCH less Facebooking and get back to some real blogging.

The flowers in the pic below came from the Flower Power Alphabet by Julia's Needle Designs. I din't love the J from that font, so I just used the J from Curlz font that I purchased form Jolson's Designs.

The polka dot frame was free from Five Star Fonts. You can find it HERE. The square frame below is the same frame, I just stopped the machine when it had completed the frame. You should check out their FREE designs. There are lots of neat goodies there.

I got the Curlz J with embellishments free from the Sew Crazie Designs Yahoo Group.
I cannot remember where I got the applique W, but the transportation frame was free from Embroidery RN.

I made these quite a while ago, so I'm having trouble remembering where I got all of the designs.

I have Personalize N Stitch, so a lot of my fonts come from there. I do know that the frames on the bottom three pics all came from THIS set from Jolson's Designs. Jolson's has a lot of fonts and all of their designs are $3.00.


I spent a good bit of time working on my labels this morning. Hopefully my blog is now more organized and will be easier for people to find posts on particular subjects. I'll try to do a better job of keeping them up.

Homemade Eye Make-up Remover

We have allowed our girls to begin to wear a small amount of make-up. I bought them a good waterproof mascara. When they took their showers last night they both came out with raccoon eyes. I had recently given the only eye make-up remover that I had away, so I began to look online for homemade recipes. I'm trying to make more stuff like this out of natural things, to help us avoid chemicals. This was one of the easiest things I've done yet. I modified what I found online a tiny bit and it worked FABULOUSLY.

All you do is mix equal parts canola oil and olive oil (you can also just use olive oil). I mixed 1 Tbsp. of each oil and added 1 drop of lemongrass oil for scent, but you could totally skip the added scent, I just like my stuff to smell good. Put it on a piece of cotton, gently wipe it over your eye, repeat until there is no residue coming off on the cotton. Then was your face as usual. Works great to get the make-up off and to moisturize the area around your eyes.