Monday, February 28, 2011

Fresh French Bread ~ there's nothin' like it!

Prepare to be amazed at my domesticity.  Is that a word?  Anyway, I baked french bread to go with dinner tonight.  It was so yummy!  The Queen of Brussels Sprouts has me all inspired to bake lately with her delicious looking bread so I decided to make some too.  One loaf I left plain because that's how the kids will eat it, but to the other loaf, I added sun-dried tomatoes and parmesan cheese.  That was mine and Hubby's favorite. 
Hubby bought me this handy dandy french bread loaf pan and I love it.  The truth of the matter is that I didn't even know such a thing existed until The Queen began talking about her pan.  Last week I baked two regular loaves but they came out tasting too salty.  I didn't have kosher salt so I just used table salt and I think that was a mistake.  I used to be afraid of making my own bread, I think the idea of dealing with the yeast and what if it didn't rise sounded to me like a lot of hassle for something that may or may not work.  I have found, though, that I love it and it really isn't as hard as I thought it would be.  It makes the house smell so good!  Anyway, if you are looking for an easy french bread recipe, go here and thank The Queen of Brussels Sprouts.  Tell her I sent you!
Next time...I'll follow the advice of one of my facebook friends and make homemade butter to go with it.  Wouldn't that be delish?!  I don't think I'm gonna report in for Fat Tuesday tomorrow, as it will ultimately be a FAIL!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Weekend Recap

How can it be Sunday night already?  On the other hand, I think I need to return to work tomorrow so that I can get a little rest.  It has been quite the eventful weekend.
Saturday we made it out to the beach for a few hours.  It was such a beautiful day!
Princess buried her daddy's feet in the sand. 

The water was really cold, but Prince still got in.  I'm sure that probably makes me a bad mommy, but he had fun.

Saturday was also my dad's birthday.  Happy birthday Daddy!
I am so thankful that God gave me such an awesome and amazing Daddy!  He has always been there for me and would do anything to help anybody.  To know him is to love him and I am so glad that my kids have him for a Grandaddy. 
After going to church and out ot lunch today, we came home to get some things done around the house.  I also took the kids back over to my parents' house to so they could help Grandma with her new garden.  Last week she asked each of the grandkids to choose what they would like to come plant and be responsible for in the garden.  So today was planting day. 
Check out Princess' planting outfit.  Can you tell she picked it out herself?  She chose to plant broccoli.  Broccoli is probably her all time favorite veggie.

Prince chose carrots. 
My nephews planted watermelons, more carrots, and greenbeans.  Grandma picked other veggies for us to help plant too and it was great fun.

Grandma and Princess spent a lot of time at the garden this afternoon planting and watering after everyone else had determined they were done.  Princess says she is hoping to have a green thumb like her grandma.  She doesn't get it from her Mama, that's for sure.  I have a hard enough time remembering to feed and water my kids, much less the plants.  My father-in-law can grow anything.  Perhaps she'll inherit those genes and be very good at growing fruits and veggies. 
As Hubby and I sit and watch the Oscars tonight, I am realizing how out of touch I am that I haven't seen many of these movies at all.  Wow, having kids will do that to you I guess.  Well, I have seen Toy Story 3, go figure.  We actually did see The King's Speech and liked it very much.  OK, signing off to watch the awards with Hubby.  Good night!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Through the Fog

Earlier this week we had a lot of morning fog.  On the way to take the kiddos to school one morning, I noticed that it was so foggy that you couldn't see the steeple at their school.  Ordinarily you can see the cross from a ways down the road behind their school.  On this particular day, all you could see was the thick, dense fog.  I hadn't really given this any significant thought, just an observation.  That is, until this morning when we were once again on the way to school.  This morning was a beautiful clear morning with the sun shining and hitting the cross above at just the right angle.  The comparison of this in our own lives struck me. 

There are times in our lives when we can't see what's coming ahead of us.  We are in a fog and we don't know why things are happening and what to expect next.  Also during those times we sometimes can't see God in all of this.  Where is He?  Is He there?  He is there, isn't He?!  We feel sure He must be, but we see no sign of Him.  Those are lonely times, frustrating times as we feel we are groping through the dense fog, reaching for assurance that we will get through.  The beauty that comes from it is that even when we can't see Him, we discover that when the fog lifts, God is there as He has always been.  He never leaves us, never forsakes us, He is always in control.  That made my heart happy this morning, thinking about how God has proven Himself to me again and again.  He is always there, the steady hand on the wheel.

For the LORD your God is a merciful God; he will not abandon or destroy you or forget the covenant with your forefathers, which he confirmed to them by oath. ~ Deuteronomy 4:31

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Discovery's Launch

Well, she finally launched!  It was down to the wire whether or not the launch would go, as there were range safety issues, but within 2 seconds of having to scrub, they were able to work out the computer issues and she is now on her way to the International Space Station.  We watched today's launch from our house.  First on T.V,
Main Engine Start

Beautiful Launch

Then we ran out into the back yard and got on top of the kids' playground to see this:
Beautiful Contrail

If you can see the tiny white dot in the middle of this picture, that's a solid rocket booster falling toward the ocean.

The weather was beautiful, the launch was beautiful, Godspeed Discovery!

Godspeed Discovery

In honor of the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery...

This will be Discovery's last mission. 

Praying for a safe launch and safe return home for our crew.

Godspeed Discovery!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Wednesday Hodgepodge

It's Hodgepodge Wednesday ~ I can't believe it's here again already!  Link up with Joyce here and join in the fun!
1. Did you know there is a National Day of pretty much everything in the universe? February 23 happens to be National Inconvenience Yourself Day...when was the last time you were inconvenienced?

Yesterday when I went to pick up a prescription that was dropped off on Monday, yet it still wasn't ready because they had to order it and asked if I would come back a little later.  Then I went to the dry cleaner and Hubby's clothes were not ready when they were supposed to be either.  Let's just say it was a little frustrating not to be able to cross things off of my list.

2. When a room in your house needs painting who does the job?
Hubby and I paint together.  I enjoy painting but Hubby does not.  My brother-in-law is an amazing painter, though so sometimes we call him over to "help" which translates into him doing it because he is just that amazing.  Speaking of which, we have some rooms that need to be painted.  Hmmmmm.....oh brother-in-law???

3. Are you friends with your cousins?
Yes, at least some of them.  I wish I got to spend more time with them though.  I get to see Sis at church once a week if nothing else.  Although I have been promising her lunch, so I guess I ought to make good on that.  I have another cousin that lives a little over an hour away and I wish we could make time to see each other more.  We have kids the same age and they get along so well.  Then I have the Alabama cousins.  They are in college, so they are quite a bit younger than me but I claim them as my own kiddos since I babysat them so much when they were babies.  I miss being able to get my "Hollywood" and "MoMo" fix, but I at least get to "see" them on facebook.
4. Do you use an alarm clock? If yes-is it an actual alarm, music, or something else?
I usually rely on Hubby's clock because he gets up about 30 minutes before I have to be up.  However, when I do have to use a clock, it must be set on the annoying alarm mode because the music doesn't wake me up.  I somehow always incorporate the music into my dream and I just don't wake up.  On the weekends I have a human alarm clock.  He looks like this:

He's a cute little alarm clock, but darn if he isn't persistent and annoying at 6 a.m. on a Saturday. 
5. What do you put ketchup on?
Besides french fries and other things you typically dip ketchup into, if it's meat, it can have ketchup on it.  It just depends on what kind of a mood I am in.  I LOVE ketchup!

6. What smells make you nostalgic? 
So many things are coming to mind right now. 
Believe it or not, one of the smells that makes me the most nostalgic is diesel.  It reminds me of trips we used to take on church buses when I was a kid.  Since my dad used to help drive with the bus ministry, I went on a lot of trips when I was little and then by my own rite when I was a teenager in youth group.  Those were fun times. 
Another nostalgic smell for me is cigar smoke.  My grandaddy smoked cigars and when I smell them, I think of him.  Twice a year, the anniversary of his death in March, and his birthday in August, I visit his grave and smoke a cigar. 
My aunt, who has also passed used to wear Youth Dew perfume and that smell makes me think of her.

7. Have you heard about the high school English teacher recently suspended as a result of some things she wrote in her personal blog? You can read the story here but in a nutshell she vented a lot of frustration onto her blog. She didn't mention individual students by name but she did make some harsh comments about kids in general and their parents.
What are your thoughts-If you're a parent is your child's teacher online and are you 'friend' or 'follower' there? If you're a teacher are you on facebook and do you accept or friend students on fb? How about their parents? If you're a student are you friends with your current or former teachers online? Do any of them have blogs you read? If you're a teacher or a parent do you ever use your blog as a place to vent your frustrations with our educational system? So much to discuss...

I think teachers are entitled to their opinions, HOWEVER, when you express your opinion in a public forum, you have to be careful. 

8. Insert your own random thought here.
The weather has been fantastic here!  I want to spend all day every day outside.  This does not bode well for the pile of clean laundry that needs to be folded or the dirty laundry that needs washing.  But the beautiful weather won't last long, for it will be hot before we know it.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

A Relaxing Evening

What nice weather we have been having!  Yesterday Hubby and I cleaned our back porch.  I bleached the kids' toys while he vacuummed and the kids, well the kids were mostly playing and staying out of the way.  Anyway, Hubby bought me a new chaise lounge and little table and he hung cafe' lights around the ceiling.  He has made a nice little place for us to sit out there and relax.  We have to take advantage of it now before it gets too hot to stand it.  So last night we ate dinner out there and after the kids went to bed, we sat in our chairs and relaxed.  He brought his i-pod out there and we listened to Enya for a while and then some ocean surf, as we dreamed about our summer beach vacation.  (Even though we live just minutes from the Atlantic, we spend a week on the Gulf every summer)  It was a very nice way to end the long weekend and ease us into the start of the work week.

I also caught up with a dear friend on the phone last night.  I miss her so much and we haven't talked in quite a while, but we were able to just pick up where we last left off.  She told me about her crazy cousins, I told her about my crazy kids.  We talked about everything and nothing all in the same conversation.  Boy do I wish she didn't live so far away!

Well, that's all I've got for tonight.  It's been quite the day today and I have no brain power left.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Pass It On

It's been a long day.  Princess woke up with a fever and an earache at 3:00 this morning.  I've been up and going since then.  Let's just say that I was not encouraged by the start of my day.  However, things turned around quickly.  My dad agreed to keep Princess because I had a meeting I had to attend today.  After dropping Prince off at school I drove through Dunkin Donuts, you know, just to get an unsweet tea.  However, since I was there, I figured I may as well get a blueberry donut.  After I ordered I pulled up to the window, only to find out that the car in front of me bought my breakfast.  What an unexpectedly nice thing to do.  I've been on the giving end of random acts of kindness like this, but never on the receiving end.  What a great feeling and a great way to turn my day around.  Now I'm looking for an opportunity to pass that kindness along to someone else.  It's true, kindness is contagious and it makes you feel good to be on the giving and receiving ends.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Busy Bee Thursday

Today has been a crazy busy day, so my post tonight is going to be short.  I worked this morning, left work to volunteer at the kids' school, went straight home to meet the cable guy, who pulled up at the same time I did, played with my nephews for a few minutes while my sister went to the doc and her Hubby came to get them, went to Target to pick up a few quick things, fed and bathed my children in time to take them back to their school for an orientation and registration meeting for next year, sent kids home with Hubby so I could go to my ladies' Circle meeting at church and am finally sitting down at 9:30 p.m.  Thankfully not every day is this crazy.  I was so glad to come together with my Christian sisters tonight and watch Anita Renfroe, a Christian comedian.  It was a great way to end the day.  If you aren't familiar with Anita Renfroe, you need to look her up on youtube.  She came up with the classic "Mom Song" to the William Tell Overture:

Before signing off for the night, I want to tell you a funny about Prince.  This morning on our way to school, we saw my grandmother on her walk.  We stopped to talk to her.  Mema was wearing a kind of cross between a scarf and a towel on her head to keep her hair from frizzing in the humidity.  Prince had never seen her wear this and he says, "Mema, you look like a fortune teller.  Do you have a crystal ball?"  My Mema did not miss a beat and said, "I don't have a crystal ball, but next time when I see you I will tell you your fortune."  As we pulled away and I rolled up my window, Prince said, "But Mom, I thought you said fortune telling was fake and all that crystal ball stuff was of the devil!"  I had to explain to him that Mema was teasing him and playing along with what he said, that it is fake and that only God knows the future.  If I ever had any doubts about how well they listen to what I say, I need not.  They listen and they will remind you verbatim of what you said at every opportunity.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I cannot tell a lie...Wednesday Hodge Podge

It's Wednesday and you know what that's time for the Wednesday Hodgepodge.  Joyce over at From This Side of the Pond does a great job supplying us with questions.  Please feel free to link up and join in!

1. Your favorite chocolate treat?
Ghirardelli dark chocolate squares ~ dark chocolate is good for your heart...probably not a whole bag of it, but I don't feel as guilty when I think it's healthy.

2. What more than anything else makes you feel loved?
When people speak encouraging words to me, and are kind.  See my post on Love Languages

3. Cherries or blueberries?

4. What is the one trait you most want the leader of your country to posess?
Integrity.  I want to know that they have a strong moral code or compass and that they truly believe they are doing the right thing. 

5. Are you a saver or a spender?
Both.  I do like to spend the money, but I know the value of saving as well.  We went through Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University a couple of years ago and it was a great program.  If you haven't done it, you should.

6. If you gave a party for all of your friends would they already know each other?
Yes, most of them would know each other or at least have heard a lot about each other.  That's what happens when you grow up in a small town.

7. Are you interested in antiques?
I like antiques and appreciate their beauty, but I don't know enough to know what's what.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
I spent a large part of yesterday working on an essay about  my vision for the future of the United Methodist Church.  It took a lot of work and conversations back and forth with my pastor to help clarify what that vision would be.  I submitted an application to be considered to go to General Conference next year and my information will be read and voted on at Annual Conference this year.  If selected, I will be a representative of  the Florida Conference at the United Methodist General Conference.  General Conference is a meeting of representatives from all over the world to discuss policies and doctrine in the United Methodist Church.  They meet every 4 years and next year when they meet, it will be in Florida.  I think it would be amazing to be a part of this process.  The essay took a lot of time and refining, then I had to find a headshot that I was happy with.  I couldn't find one so I had to spend some time taking pictures of myself because of course I waited until the last minute to decide for sure to do this.
Now that I look at it, I'm not as happy with it.  It was better than the double chins I kept getting in other shots though.  Oh well, maybe it won't be printed very big and maybe the resolution won't be great. 

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Conversation Hearts

Do you remember getting the little boxes of conversation hearts for Valentine's Day when you were a kid?  I remember getting them from friends at school and reading with amusement all of the little sayings on them.  They said cute little things like "Be Mine" or "U R Cute."  Now they say things like "Text Me." 

Anyway, these hearts got me to thinking about my prayer life.  God doesn't want me to come to Him with trite little sayings and prayers, He wants all of me.  It isn't the fancy language or jargon we use that matters to Him.  It is what is in our hearts.  When we speak to God from our hearts, we are having real conversation with Him.  A lot of times my prayers are a stream of consciousness, whatever is going through my head at that moment kind of prayer.  If I were to make conversation hearts for God they might say "Help!" or "Thank You" or "I Love You."  Those are just quick things I say throughout the day and He knows my heart. 

When I first heard Paul's words in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 that we are to "Pray without ceasing," I didn't think it was possible.  I figured monks can probably do that, but how could I possibly pray all the time?  I have come to realize though, that what Paul meant was that our praying should be like breathing.  We do it all the time, but we aren't conscious of it.  Many times I find that I am carrying on these little conversations in my head just as I go throughout my day, talking to God.  I don't have to be in a special prayer posture or some quiet place.  I think that is what Paul meant.  The "amen" is never truly an amen because in a few minutes I'm going to think of something else I need to tell Him about and the conversation will last through the whole day.  There are times in my day that I set aside for quiet time with God, but it isn't like I set aside just 30 minutes to give to Him and then I go about my day.  It doesn't work that way.  I take God with me wherever I go.  Silly as it may sound, there are times when I driving in the car by myself and I can picture Jesus sitting right in that front passenger seat right next to me.  I just start talking out loud to him about things that are on my heart.  To people on the outside, I probably look like I'm talking to myself, but I know that Jesus is right there with me, listening to my every word.  Then I'll be quiet for a bit and drive in the quiet, listening for His voice.  It can't always be a one sided conversation or I'll never hear what God wants me to hear.  This has been something that I've had to train myself to do, driving in silence, that is.  My instinct used to be to get in the car and turn on some music.  I do some of that too, but those quiet moments alone with God are precious.  If you are a mom, you know that quiet time is at a premium, so you have to take it when you can get it.  Now that the kids are in school, I have a little more time than I used to and I do appreciate that time more and more.
How's your conversation with God?

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentine's Love

Saturday night Prince was visibly upset and I asked him what was wrong.  He said that he was afraid that he is growing up and that there might come a day when I won't sing his special song to him anymore because he would be too big for it.  As I tried to reassure him that this would never happen and that I will always sing his song, I remembered the book "Love You Forever."  I have had this book for quite some time and I tried to read it to the twins when they were younger.  There's one problem.  I can't get through this book without boo-hooing.  It is not a pretty sight.  Anywho, Prince asked if I would find the book when we got home from the in-law's on Sunday and read it to him.  Of course I said I would.  From the time we pulled into town on Sunday afternoon Prince kept asking me about the book.  I went right to the bookshelf where I knew the book would be and it wasn't there.  I searched every place I could think of and could not find this book.  So on our date last night I told Prince we would go to Wal-Mart and buy another copy of the book.  Wal-Mart did not have the book.  Prince was very upset about this.  How could they not have the book?!  They used to have it!  This afternoon Target saved the day.  Even though I think I used to have 2 copies of this book, I can't find any so I bought 2 more books, one for each of the kids.

Tonight after a marvelous Valentine's dinner, gifts, and homework, Prince and Princess were crawling into bed and as promised I read "Love You Forever" to them.  Yes, I boo-hooed.  My children were laughing at me, not understanding why I would cry at this book.  After I finished the story, I hugged them each a little tighter and said in their ears, "I'll love you forever, I'll like you for always, As long as you're living, My baby you'll be."  Prince then looked up at me and said, "Mom, I'll love you forever.  Will you sing my song?"  So with that, I sang to each of them and tucked them into bed.  What a fantastically sweet way to end our familyValentine's celebration.
Hubby and I have always chosen a family dinner and gathering for Valentine's Day as we all celebrate the love we have for each other.  During our blessing tonight, Hubby read my mind as he prayed that God would help us to love others as He is the ultimate example of what that love should be.  This day is much more than a card holiday, although the cards and flowers are certainly nice.  It is a day that reminds us of how we should feel and act every day, in a spirit of love toward those special people in our lives.  We should never take for granted the opportunity to say "I love you," for we never know what the future holds.  I was also reminded today that we are supposed to love even those people in our lives that are difficult to love.  That's a tough one, but, "we love because God first loved us." 

Happy Valentine's Day!  I'm off to spend what's left of it with my Valentine, who is NOT difficult to love at all.

Date Night

Tonight was a Father Daughter Valentine's Dance at Princess' school.  She and her Daddy were quite excited about going.  Hubby decided he would wear his tux and he ordered Princess a sweet little wrist corsage. 
Princess and her Daddy practiced dancing before the dance.  It was so sweet and she was so excited.
They had a fantastic time.  Hubby said that Princess was out in the middle of the dance floor shakin' what her mama gave her.  I think we are gonna have our hands full with this little girlie if she's this much of a party girl at age 6.  She's got the moves!

Prince and I had a date tonight too.  We ate dinner at his favorite pizza place and then took a trip to the store to buy him a treat.  It was great quality time.  As we were sitting at the table waiting for our food to come, Prince told me that he loved me and that I'm beautiful, giving me all of these compliments.  He then launched into a poem of his very own that went something like this:
"Mom, you are as beautiful as a flower."  So far this was good.  Then it got kind of strange.
"Your eyes are like pizzas.  Your lips are like hearts.  Your legs are like pickles."  I can't even remember the rest of what he said.  It was quite cute though, that he thought he was being sweet and reciting an original poem especially for me.  It was original alright! 

Over all, Date Night with the kiddos was a huge success and we are thinking of doing this once a month, trading off kids every other time. 

And now, I must get my "pickle legs" to bed as my "pizza eyes" are about to close.
Good Night!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

What Language Do You Speak?

Have you ever read Gary Chapman's book "The Five Love Languages?"  In it, he talks about the way we give and want to receive love.  Those are our love languages.  The 5 love languages are: Quality Time, Physical Touch, Words of Encouragement, Acts of Service, and Giving Gifts.  The idea behind the study is to figure out what people's love languages are so that you can better understand how they perceive love.  It helps you to speak their love language.  Hubby and I did this study in Sunday School when we were first married and I have facilitated "The Five Love Languages of Children" for our preschool parents.  It is so interesting to think about what makes our loved ones tick.

My children are so different. 

Prince's primary love language is Physical Touch with Words of Encouragement coming in a close 2nd.  He loves to snuggle up and be cuddled and he wants me to sing his song to him.  It's the same song I've sung to since they were in my tummy.  I sang it in the NICU, during those long nights when he was up doing breathing treatments, any time anything uncomfortable would happen, I would sing his song.  It's to the tune of "We love you Conrad" from Bye Bye, Birdie and it's such a simple little song, but he still loves it to this day.  "I love you ______, oh yes I do, I love you ________, oh yes I do, I love you ________, I do, Oh _________ I love you."  That's all there is to it, but as soon as I start to sing it, he calms right down.  Prince is an encourager of others.  He loves to tell people they are smart or beautiful.  He is a master at paying someone the ultimate well-placed compliment and making them feel good. 

Princess on the other hand, is a Quality Time kind of girl.  She just wants you to sit with her or play with her or just be in the room with her.  She is constantly saying,  "Spend time with me."  She is happy just having you with her.  She shows love by giving people gifts.  She is constantly wrapping up little trinkets to give to people and wants to take presents to her friends at school.  She colors pictures for people.  Many a time she has gone into our bedroom and wrapped a present for Hubby or I that is something we already own.  She says, "I knew you'd like this and I'll bet you even forgot you own this!"  She is such a giving child, with a heart so big.  She just wants to please.

I would have to say that my primary love language is Quality Time.  Hubby and I do most everything together and I love that.  Behind that, I'd say Words of Encouragement and Physical Touch.  There's nothing like those love letters Hubby used to write me or the way he tells me he's proud of all I do for us.  And those kisses still fog up my glasses!  I also have to say that there's nothing sexier than seeing Hubby do the dishes when I haven't even asked him for help!  I do like it when Hubby surprises me with a small gift, but it's because of the thought he puts into it and into knowing what I like and need.  We all have a bit of all of these languages in our relationships, but everyone seems to have one or two primary languages. 
Hubby's primary language is Quality Time with Words of Encouragement right behind.  Funny how that worked out that we are so much alike in how we like to give and receive love.  I guess it's a good thing we "speak the same language."
If you would like to know what love language you speak, there are several online tests you can take if you google "5 Love Languages Assessment."  Here's one that I found:
I just went through it to be sure of accuracy and how it works.  It says for you to put your email address in and they will email you a profile.  I chose to skip that step and it still works.
Perhaps finding out what your spouse's love language is will help give ideas for Valentine's Day coming up on Monday! 

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

I Heart Wednesday Hodgepodge

Last week, Paula in La La Land and Prairie Fire joined in the Wednesday HodgePodge.  See how much fun we are having here?  Go say hi to them!  And if you want to be as cool as we are, link up with Joyce here and do the HodgePodge with us!

1. What is more important-doing what you love or loving what you do?

I both are important.  It is important to do what you love, but hopefully if you can't do what you love, you will make the best of what you are doing and learn to love things about what you do.  It's like asking if you should have what you want or want what you have.  You can't have it all, even though that would be nice, but you can be happy with what you do have and in whatever situation you find yourself, you can find the good.  - That was a long, run-on sentence!  Sorry about that.

2. Do you like bleu cheese?

Yummy!  I do love the bleu cheese.  When I was pregnant with the twins I remember having strong cravings for bleu cheese.  When going to a restaurant, the criteria was that they had to have something that I could eat with bleu cheese, either as a dressing or a dip or whatever. 

3. What is the most difficult emotion for you to handle?
Probably grief.  It's just hard to move past it and go on with life.  It is something you have to go through and eventually you find that each day gets a little better but when you are in the middle of it, it seems the grieving will never end. 

4. Fresh flowers or a box of chocolate?

Flowers ~ they are beautiful to look at and they don't put the pounds on your hips.

5. What's a song you love that has the word 'love' in its title? It doesn't have to be a 'love song'.

"Love of My Life" ~ Jim Brickman and Michael W. Smith
6. Are you the person you wanted to be when you grew up?

What an interesting question.  I was thinking this morning as my two precious children were driving me crazy calling "Mom" every two minutes.  I always wanted children, always knew I wanted to be a mommy and here I was packing their lunches for school and fussing that I didn't want to hear my name again for awhile.  God gave me a bit of an attitude adjstment as I was reminded that this was the life I always wanted.  I was also reminded that many women want to be called Mommy and can't have children of their own.  Nothing like a nice dose of perspective to get my attitude in check. 
I think I am the person I wanted to be, except I thought I would be doing more.  I thought that by now I would have had my doctorate and maybe have written a book.  When you are a kid it all seems so easy and you don't realize the investment of time, energy, and resources it takes to do some of the things you want to do.  I have always had the best of plans, and then life gets in the way.  I have heard it said that Jesus' ministry came in the form of interruptions.  I like to think that we are the same way.  That the interruptions in our lives may mess with our plans, but they are a part of God's greater plans for us. 

7. Any special Valentines Day plans?

 I will cook a dinner at home for the 4 of us.  I'm not sure what I'll cook, but we always celebrate together as a family, the love God has for us and the love we have for each other.  Last year Princess wanted to have a Valentine's Dance at our house so Hubby found some music and we moved the dining room table after dinner and danced in the dining room.  Hubby and I danced some more after putting the kids to bed. 

8. Insert your own random thought here.

Here's a random thought.  The other night when I was kind of watching the Super Bowl, I saw that when Green Bay scored a touchdown, the player got down on his knees in the endzone and you could tell he was thanking God for it.  In one sense, I guess the public acknowledgement for what he did with God's help was good.  In another sense, does he think God is a Green Bay fan?  Do we really think He is swayed one way or another by a particular football team?  I know the point is that God is with all of us and helps us to do the best we can do, but it just struck me funny at the time. 

Happy Wednesday Everybody!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

What a Dorky Thing to Do!

Two posts in one day...Shocking I know.  But I had to share this story, I'm sure somebody needs a laugh today.

Last week Hubby came home from work with a surprise for me.  He had been to the mall and bought me a new leather jacket.  It was on a major sale so he gets extra, extra bonus points for that.  This morning when I walked outside and realized how chilly it was, I rushed back into the house and grabbed my new jacket.  I really like it and think it looks good on me.  I never understood why people took pictures of themselves in the car until I realized that you can hold the phone up to the rear view mirror and see what you look like before taking it.  (I know, I'm a little slow.) 
Anyway, this morning when I was sitting at a red light I thought I would take a picture of myself and email it to Hubby to show him that I was wearing the jacket.  I had also straightened my hair this morning with the new straightening iron my sis had given me.  I wanted Hubby's feedback.
He liked it.  After feeling so blah yesterday and feeling better today and then trying out the new look, I was feeling pretty good about things.  I wore my jacket proudly all day and into the kids' school this afternoon.  I stopped in the bathroom and took off my jacket to hang it on the back of the door and guess what I found hanging from the back of the armpit...yep....the price tag.  Here I thought I looked good and I looked like Minnie Pearl. 
What a dork! 

Oh well, it's a good thing Hubby didn't marry me for my coolness factor!  What embarrassing things have happened to you lately?

Fat Tuesday, Week 2

I have joined in with the Lumberjack's Wife for Fat Tuesday, an accountability day for anyone hoping to shed a few pounds.  Anyone is welcome to jump in or out at any time.
So...Let's take inventory of how I did this week:

I thought about pulling out my Leslie Sansone Walk off the Pounds ~ Win!

I didn't actually do it and I don't guess I can use "it's the thought that counts." ~ Fail!

I did however do sit-ups on Saturday ~ Win!

Oh, and last Tuesday I did 5 push-ups at karate with my nephew.  I didn't know I could still do one push-up so I was quite proud of my 5.  Don't judge - 5 push-ups was a starting place at least! ~ Win!

I made tons of junk food for the Superbowl on Sunday night and my mom, Mema and I sat around the table and ate and talked for most of the game. ~ Fail!

I've been sick the last two days and can't taste much, thus not having much of an appetite. ~Win!

I stepped on the scales for the first time in quite a while.  I've been going just by how my clothes fit.  Anyway, I found that I have lost 10 pounds since mid-December.  ~ Win!

Perhaps I'll actually get the exercise DVD out and do it some this week.  Go visit Taylor at The Lumberjack's Wife and see the yummy dessert recipes she printed along with the Weight Watcher Points she calculated!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Manic Monday or Blessed Beginning of the Week?

I am sick.  I can't breathe out of my nose, I can't taste anything and I feel blah.  It's been gloomy and rainy looking all day.  It's just what you'd call a Monday or maybe Moanday.  UGHHHH!  So in order to make myself feel better about this yucky Monday, I started to think of all of the things that are going right in my life.  Let's make a list, shall we?

1.  I have two little people that depend on me to nurture, love, and give them what they need.  Even when I mess up, they love me unconditionally.

2.  Hubby works hard to provide for our family so that I don't have to work full-time and can spend time with my favorite little people.

3.  Hubby supports my call to be in ministry and will do whatever God calls us to do.

4.  I went to the grocery store today and got lots of good bargains.  I got $187 worth of groceries for $83 after coupons and sales.  Our kitchen is stocked with lots of healthy (and a little not so healthy) food that will nourish our bodies.

5.  Hubby helped me clean house yesterday afternoon.  He is such a blessing!  It feels good to sit in our nice clean house.

6.  Hubby finally took down his Star Trek Christmas tree yesterday.  This is something that I can't do because I'm not supposed to touch it.  I finally told him that it either comes down before Valentine's Day or I'm taking it down.  That did the trick.

7.  I finally put our nativity scene away yesterday afternoon.  Those were the lingering remnants of Christmas.  For some reason, this year I just didn't want to put it away.   I wanted to look at baby Jesus a little bit longer.  Prince kept picking up the baby Jesus and turning him over and laughing while saying, "I see Jesus' hiney."  That is so wrong.  Anyway, it's all put away now.

8.  I am able to function.  For several years there were days and even weeks when all I could do was lay in bed in pain.  I had to have people help care for my babies and me while Hubby went to work.  It was no fun.  So when I get sick with something minor like a sinus infection, I am thankful that I am able to do for myself and my family. 

9.  My home is safe and warm and I don't want for anything.  I had a hot shower and it felt so good!

10.  There's a God who made me and loves me and blesses me every day beyond what I could ever imagine.  He blesses me in spite of myself and all of my shortcomings.  I could never earn or deserve what He has done for me, but it's because of His grace and mercy that I am blessed.

See how the sun in peeking through those dark clouds?  It reminds me of how God can shine in our lives during those yucky days, if only we will look for Him.  He's in the little things and the big things.  He's in every aspect of our lives.  I love it when my kids see the sun peeking through clouds like this.  They say, "Look Mommy, God is smiling down on us!"  What an awesome thought. 
So now I'll concentrate on feeling incredibly blessed for what I do have, not for what I lack and instead of singing "Just another manic Monday" I'll be singing "I'm trading my sickness, I'm trading my pain, I'm laying them down for the joy of the Lord."

Friday, February 4, 2011

Friday Fun

The fire department came to the preschool today to do their "friendly firefighter" demonstration.  They dress up in their gear with the oxygen on and all so the kids will know not to be afraid and run away if for some reason they see a firefighter and help is needed.  It was also Donuts for Dads day so the Daddies were all there for demonstration as well.  It was so much fun to see all of the dad's with their kids. Guess who got to dress up in the firefighter gear ~ ME! 

That is some heavy gear, no wonder firefighters have strong muscles.  The gear is also hot ~ and not in a good way. ;)
The kids also got to spray the fire hose.  They had a blast!

This is my nephew, Sweet Cheeks.  He got right in there with the bigger kids and knew exactly what to do. 

Also today, I walked into the auto repair shop to pick up Hubby's truck.  It needed a new headlight switch.  The guy behind the counter was on the phone and this was what I heard:
"Yeah buddy, I got ya covered.  Did you say you live in ___________?  What road do you live on?  Oh, yeah I just live on _____________.  I can bring the part home and you can come pick it up from my house before you turn off your truck that way you won't have trouble gettin' it started again.  I live on the west side of the road.  You know where Larry the Lawnmower guy lives?  Yeah, you know that old guy that fixes up the lawnmowers and then puts them out by the road to sell them.  Yeah I live just down from there.  OK buddy, here's my other phone number just call me before you come over.  We're havin' people over tonight for supper and cards.  A'ight.  Bye."  I'm not sayin' it's a bad thing.  Actually, it was quite comforting to know that people are still neighborly and helpful to others.  It's just different from the norm.  Not that people are rude here, it's hard to explain and just a bit different.  Good times.
I like dealing with small businesses, it's so much more personable.  The people that own this place were exremely nice to us and were not out to make extra money off of us.  It was a refreshing way to do business with someone.
The twins did well on their spelling tests.  They both scored "E" for excellent, although Princess spelled nine "nien."  Then there's the Prince who misspelled six.  Yep, you've got it, he spelled it "sex."  I'm sorry I guess I'm in middle school humor mode.  He has no clue that this is even a word but I did chuckle in my head a little.  Moving on...

Tonight is Family Fun Night and I have no plan.  Hubby and I talked about going out to dinner but I think we are too tired so I'm not sure what we will end up doing.  Something really low maintenance together as a family.  Ideas anyone???

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Thursday Thoughts

I woke up at 4:00 this morning with lots of thoughts swirling around in my head.  Most of them had to do with things I needed to get done at work today, but I also have a long list of things to do at home, and then there are the things that I want to do for myself and can never find the time to do.  So here's a list of Thursday Thoughts:

1.  Happy Anniversary to my Mom and Dad! or Happy in-the-nursery as I used to say when I was little
They have been married for 38 years.  That's a long time, but I guess time flies when you're having fun.

Speaking of which, in staff meeting yesterday, Pastor told about a lady he met in the hospital who was in her 90's.  Her husband is 101 and they've been married over 70 years.  Now that's a long time!

2.  I folded and put away A LOT of clothes today.  There are still lots more that need to be done but it won't be tonight.  I think we have too many clothes at our house.  Actually, I would be in favor of disposable clothes.  Then I wouldn't have to do laundry.  Of course that isn't a very "green" way to think now, is it?!  Oh well, just a thought.

3.  Speaking of laundry, I really need to clean out my dresser drawers.  Does anyone else have this problem?  I have many single socks that I'm not sure where the matches ever went, but they haven't been seen for quite some time.  I think the sock monster must have eaten them.  My sock drawer only scratches the surface but it's a good start.  I won't even tell you about the purses in my closet that need to be gone through.

4.  I got a lot of things marked off my to do list at work today.  Do you ever make lists just so you can cross things off?  Like you know what you need to do and maybe you've even done a couple of the things on your list but you still put them on there so you can feel all accomplished when you see how many things you have actually crossed off.  Just sayin' it's a good feeling.

5.  I hope my kids are ready for their spelling tests tomorrow. Princess is having a little trouble remembering how to spell "eight." Such a hard word for kindergarten. They are all number words this week: five, six, seven, eight, nine. Seven and eight are tripping her up. I've been trying to make up little cheerleading chants to help her remember how to spell her words. She tells me I don't make a good cheerleader. Woo girl is right and she's definitely cooler than me. BUT at least I know how to get her to remember her spelling words, even if I'm not a woo girl like her.

6.  I'm so glad tomorrow is Friday.  These 5 day work weeks just about kill ya.

7.  Do you ever get in a cranky mood for no apparent reason and you wish you could have an out of body experience to get away from yourself but you can't?  Me neither.  I don't feel like that tonight at all.  Just wondering if you ever do.
E-I-G-H-T. (I think I've been practicing spelling words too long tonight)   Perhaps a hot bubble bath and a glass of wine will help to cure the grumpies.  I mean, not that I'm grumpy or anything but if I were, I might try that and see if I feel better. 

Good night!  I'm off to fill up the tub!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Beat the Winter Blues Hodge Podge Wednesday

It's Wednesday Hodgepodge Day!  If you want to join in, go see Joyce at From This Side of the Pond to link up.  It's really a great opportunity to get to know other bloggers.

1. Would you rather be seen as a person who did their duty or forged their own path?

As I have mentioned before, I am a play by the rules kind of girl.  I guess that makes me lean toward wanting to be seen as a person who did their duty.  I don't want it to look like I didn't do things I should have done.

2. This week's Wednesday Hodgepodge happens to fall on Groundhog's Day. In keeping with that theme, if you could have a do-over of any one day out of the last seven, which day would it be and why. If you haven't seen the movie Groundhog Day this question will make absolutely no sense but that's can answer anyway.

Monday was not a great day.  I'm not sure why, just really busy and I was really emotional.  This is probably the day I would like to do over.  On the other hand, Sunday was fantastic....fantastic worship, fantastic attitude, fantastic alone time in the car with the praise and worship music blaring and I could sing along, Hubby came home from his weekend trip, it was all around great.  If I could do it again just the same, I would do it again and again!

You thought my question was going to be weather related didn't you?

3. Hot cocoa...yay or nay on the marshmallows?

Whipped cream!  I could go with or without the marshmallows.

4. Do you wear makeup every day? What are the top two must haves in your daily makeup routine?

I wear makeup every day that I leave the house.  The exception to this rule is if I'm too sick to care and that doesn't happen very often.  I'm not sure about top two must haves...if I'm gonna do it, I'll do the whole routine.

5. Is it more important to you in a relationship to be loved or understood?

I think that through love comes understanding, or at least trying to understand the other person.  So I'm gonna go with love and hope that the understanding comes with it.

6. Parsley sage rosemary or thyme... your favorite?

7. What do you do when you feel angry?
I tend to be a bit vocal when I'm angry.  This is not one of my better traits and I have been working on demonstrating more self control.  This is especially true with my children.  I'll let you know how that goes.

8. Insert your own random thought here

I went to the dentist yesterday to have my teeth cleaned.  To see how I feel about the dentist, you can go here.  This time I went just for a cleaning.  I have always dreaded going to the dentist, afraid that they will inflict pain, even if just for a check-up.  I have to admit that it wasn't too bad today.  I have decided though, to change my frame of mind and perhaps my attitude will change too.  If I think this is going to be a relaxing time of letting the hygenist clean and take care of my teeth, maybe I'll be able to loosen up about it.

In other news, Prince and Princess are both getting awards in Chapel this morning.  Prince is getting a Spelling Award and Princess is getting Most Improved in Phonics and Math Award.  I am so proud of their hard work!