Friday, September 17, 2010


Big Boy turned 6 last Sunday. We celebrated with lots of friends, MANY blessings and good times! We love you Big Boy~~
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Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Works for Me Wednesday

Big Boy has started Kindergarten and Little Guy is still in PreK. About 2-3 times a week, they have homework. In three weeks, I've already completely worn out the "where is my pencil" welcome. It's driving me mad!!

So this is my simple solution to homework time:

The super simple, super convenient pencil case! Snag an extra during that clearance time at your local Red Dot aisle, WalMart or Staples and stuff that baby full of pencils, crayons, erasers and scissors. Keep it near the homework area. For us that is the kitchen, so these little babies are in the "junk drawer" near the table. When the boys return from school, they change their clothes, grab a snack and settle in to finish their homework. This has solved the "where is my......" statement every time.

Join all the other genius moms over at We Are That Family for more great WFMW tips!!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tempt My Tummy Tuesday

I figured today I would hook with one of the old favorites....Tempt my Tummy Tuesdays and Tasty Tuesdays! 

This is one of our very favorite breakfast recipes....and we do breakfast for dinner at least once every couple of weeks. YUM! Hope you enjoy it as well!


* 1 cup packed brown sugar
* 1/3 cup butter, melted
* 2 tablespoons light corn syrup
* 1/3 cup chopped pecans
* 12 (3/4 inch thick) slices French bread
* 1 teaspoon grated orange zest
* 1 cup fresh orange juice
* 1/2 cup 2% milk
* 3 tablespoons white sugar
* 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
* 3 egg whites
* 2 eggs
* 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar for dusting


1. In a small bowl, stir together the brown sugar, melted butter, and corn syrup. Pour into a greased 9x13 inch baking dish, and spread evenly. Sprinkle pecans over the sugar mixture. Arrange the bread slices in the bottom of the dish so they are in a snug single layer. I often use leftover bread pieces--it works great.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the orange zest, orange juice, milk, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla, egg whites, and eggs. Pour this mixture over the bread, pressing on the bread slices to help absorb the liquid. Cover and refrigerate for at least one hour, or overnight.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C ). Remove the cover from the baking dish, and let stand for 20 minutes at room temperature.
4. Bake for 35 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Dust with confectioners' sugar before serving.

Join the others over at At The Well and Balancing Beauty and Bedlam for other terrific recipes!! Have a wonderful day!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Works for me Wednesday!

I couldn't wait to come back to WFMW!  Oh!  How I love it!!  I learn something new and great every single time and astound my friends and family with my wealth of knowledge!  Ahem.....I'm just sayin'......

So today's tips for WFMW are what works for school.  All those great back-to-school tips and tidbits.   

Here is mine:

I took a frame with a glass front:

Then I covered the background with some some scrapbooking paper:

Finally, I measured out my calendar days, added a few boxes for miscellaneous things like grocery lists and other various to-do lists.  I mismatched a lot of different textures and designs, all in my outstanding effort to cover how much of a non-perfectionist I am.   See?  Looks well planned out, right?!  Yep--that's how I work!  :)

And voila!  The final product:

You can simply write on the glass with any dry erase marker and they wipe off in a flash.  I hung it in our kitchen area.  I did the close up because the rest of the wall is not finished yet.  I plan on adding a couple of finished cork boards to hang things on and a little chalkboard for the kids to play on, down below.  

I really use the calendar faithfully....keeps everyone on board with a quick glance to see what is coming up this week.

That really works for me.  What works for you?

Join everyone else on over at We Are That Family for tons more tips!  

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

First Day of School

You know....that God of ours sure knows what He is doing!

If I was still in my old job, I probably would have missed this....

or this....

or this and this.....

Thank you God, for knowing so much more than I do.  Thank You for guiding my journey of motherhood and always leading me in Your way.

It was a pretty fantastic first day of school!!  WOO HOO!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

We're BACK!

Hi y'all!!

We're BACK!

Well, we really never went anywhere....except work, school, work, school, work.

It's SO overrated ya know?!

Remember the story about how I thought I would try a new role out at the hospital?  I did.  Didn't like it.  No-not really. 

So back to life as I once knew it.  Back to working shifts at the hospital.  And back to parenting more full-time instead of hardly part-time.  Back to laundry (Oh.My.Gosh!  Did I really say that?!).

We spent a lot of time with God and prayer, trying to figure out what the next season of our life is.  I'm not completely sure.  But it does not involve working 50 hours a week, while the hubby still travels.  And the boys are young.  That isn't quite what works for us.  (Is that great little bloggy theme around?!)

I'm really looking forward to having some time to take care of my family and to go to school myself.  I'm pursuing a Masters in Nursing to gain my Advanced RN Practitioner degree.  The plan is that will afford me some great flexibility from now until....oh, until the boys are gone from home and married?  That should work.  I hope!

Until is how we spent yesterday, getting back into the swing of of spending time together.....

That's Jesus on the the beach....

Have a great day!  See you around, very soon!!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

We hung with pirates....

We hung out with some pirates this past weekend at the Renaissance Festival.

And one amazing Wizard!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Chicken and Pasta in Brown Sauce

I sure wish I had taken a picture of this great recipe! 

It was a HIT with the family and we all loved it!!  ENJOY!

Chicken and Pasta in Brown Sauce

2 Tbs. Olive Oil
1/2 med. onion, sliced thin
1 1/2 cups chopped leftover Rotisserie chicken (meat, no skin)
3 cups whole wheat penne pasta
2 cups chicken broth
1-2 Tbs. cornstarch
2 tsp. cajun seasoning
2 tsp. black pepper

Boil water for pasta.  Cook pasta to al dente.  While pasta is cooking, saute onion in olive oil until browned.  Add chicken.  Warm through.  Add chicken broth, bringing to a low simmer.  Remove approximately 3/4 cup liquid to a spare bowl.  Combine cornstarch with hot broth and stir, removing all clumps and starting your gravy/sauce.  Return broth/sauce back to pan, simmering on low until thickened.  Add pasta.  Add cajun seasoning and pepper.   Serve.

Honestly, it is simple and delicious!  Not too mention low fat and full of whole grains with the whole wheat pasta.  Good stuff!!

Join others on over at Blessed with Grace! for other tasty Tuesday treats!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

We're losing it around here.....

Teeth that is....

Big Boy lost his first tooth today!

It's been loose a while now.  He got tired of being patient and just pulled it out after lunch!

Writing that letter to the Tooth Fairy so he can collect his loot!!

And so begins a new chapter in our family.  When baby teeth fall out, all sense of babyhood is gone.  Now excuse me while I grab a tissue.....*sniff*  *sniff*

Sunday, February 7, 2010

If I only had a month of Sundays....

I've spent the better part of this morning just ogling over some wonderful things on other people's blogs....

And because my camera has taken the final dirt nap, I can't show you any of my projects right now.

But here are a few that I simply LOVE to look at and can't wait to copy!

This gorgeous homemade dry erase calendar from Somewhat Simple!
Perfect for our spot in the kitchen.  And I'll be adding a corkboard above for all those school notes and papers.

Aren't these pillows just PERFECT?  I LOVE THEM!!  And for goodness sake, even I can sew a square!  You can find the whole tutorial over at The Blessed Nest.

How about this gorgeous mod-podge light cover?  So easy and yet it adds so much to a room decor.  This I can do!!  Thanks Leanne over at Organize and Decorage Everything! 

I truly love this idea!  I don't have 5 kids~~~but I do have a great family and I can picture doing this with a great Bible quote and family pics!  Great ideas over at How Does She?! 

And I can't begin to tell you how excited I was to find this tutorial!  I've been wanting to do a Lego table for the boys for a year now.....perfect idea for an old table I have in the garage!  Thanks Kate over at the Gaines Gang!

How about you?  Have you found anything wonderful on the Web lately? 

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Anyone else?

I'm wondering if anyone else gets


for this:

only to be


when it ends because we know very little after than we did before we watched it? too.

But I can't wait to be frustrated!!


Sunday, January 31, 2010

Goodbye Sweet Girl

Our dog has died.

Our girl Boxer, Lucy, passed quietly in her sleep last Monday.  She had been suffering from a very bad case of pancreatitis that did not improve with treatments.  It didn't take long.  Two weeks and she was gone.  We were terribly afraid we were going to have to make the horrendous decision to put her to sleep.  But then she saved us from that and passed that morning. 

It has been so very, very sad.  The boys have been weepy, distraught and confused.  Full of questions about death and Heaven and what she is doing with God.  We do our best to explain.  But how do explain how sweet Lucy actually gets to Heaven so she can play fetch with God?  It's not been easy.  An important life lesson, yes.  But certainly not easy.

Super Hubs has been very sad.  We realized through this whole process that he has not lost anyone close to him in many, many years.  His father, though struggling with his disease, is still here.  I've lost a friend's son and others.  But together, as a family, this was our first death of someone close.  A blessing in some ways;  other ways, not so much.  It's been hard.

Thoughts of her come to me occasionally and really catch me off guard.  I did not expect to grieve quite like this.  I grew up on a farm.  Animals die.  But I realize now that I've never had a family pet, who I lived with, slept with, cuddled and loved so greatly, die.  Growing up, our pets never entered our house.  Pets living in your house?  A different story.  A member of your family.  Most certainly.  And I miss her. 

The boys are entertaining thoughts of a new pet.  We have a male Boxer who is sad now.  They think he needs a new friend.  But hubs and I aren't ready yet.  Not quite ready for a new puppy to overtake that part of our hearts or home.  We feel like we owe it to sweet Lucy to give her a little more time to be the 'other girl' in the house.  So we'll wait.

Have you lost a pet?  Were you too, surprised at the pain of the loss? 

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

It works for me....


It's what Works For Me.

I'm happy to get back in on a WFMW post with friends over at We Are That Family.

Because we too, are one of THOSE families.

And what works for me is prayer. Prayer every. single. day. Sometimes more than once a day.

I've often really wondered about people that have no faith in Christ. Those that are not believers. It is beyond me. I don't ever remember not having faith. Not having a relationship with Christ. Not being a believer in Him, His Kingdom, His Word. I don't criticize those that aren't believers. I just simply don't understand it.

This week, because we are ONE of THOSE families, I've been challenged to stand faithful and strong. Challenged to lean on Him more. Through some of life's everyday happenings, I lean on Him. And through those not-so-everyday happenings, I lean on Him.

Prayer works. One of my favorite quotes is here on my blog. "I pray because I doesn't change God. It changes me." I got it out of a movie called Shadowlands, when Anthony Hopkins portrayed C.S. Lewis. Mr. Lewis had just lost his beloved wife and was grieving terribly. His friends were trying to console him. He could not be easily consoled. If you have not seen this movie or read any works by C.S. Lewis, I would highly recommend it. His writings were and are, phenomenal. The movie was fantastic. His writings have deepened my faith and helped me explore areas of my Christianity that I had not yet looked at.

So try it. Prayer that is. It works. For me.

Join everyone else on over at We Are THAT Family to find out what else works!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Cleaning....otherwise known as my prescription for anxiety....

Who else cleans like Martha Stewart when faced with a difficult decision?  Who else falls in love with Mr. Clean when life deals you a deck of crummy cards? 


Definitely me.

I hate to admit it but I'm most effective at cleaning when I'm anxious.  Or mad.  Or both.

When I have a situation that looks bleak, my stainless steel is screaming bright!  I can accomplish more in 30 minutes when I have a difficult situation I'm facing than I can accomplish in 3 hours when life is easy peasy.  It's just the way it is.  Beats eating chocolate.

Except for the times when chocolate goes hand-in-hand with said cleaning.  Then it's just. not. pretty.

But my friend over at Thrifty Decor Chic is asking for cleaning tips.  Cleaning shortcuts.  Genius ideas for cleaning.

Mine?  Other than cleaning my house rather than taking a massive dose of Ativan? 


Playlist is a free site that lets you build a playlist of your favorite songs and play them on your computer.  I have several lists.  One for massive amounts of cleaning.  One for relaxing when done cleaning.  Great kids music.  A really cool set of Christian music.  All I have to do is define my mood and hit play. 

Here is one of my favorite playlists right now.  Feel free to use it next time you gotta get something done.

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Works for me.  Every time!

Join all those other creative peeps on over at TDC for more great cleaning tips!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

It is THAT time of year....

Another little peek into one of my FAV-O-RITE pleasures....


And in one week, these guys

will play against these guys

And that makes this house, one crazy, hyped-up, football frenzied HOT MESS!!

New Year--it is still January, right?

 It is still January so technically, ahem!  I can still say

I've thought many, MANY days about catching up on the blog but then doubt would interfere and I'd ask myself, "What do I really have to say right now?"

I am at a crossroads of sorts.  Not quite sure what to blog about.  My life has changed.  My focus is much different than it was six months ago.

Or is it?

I went back to recap on some of my blog entries from the past year.  They reflect a woman who was driven in many ways.  Driven to create the best home for her family.  Driven to feed her family well, AND frugally.  Driven to be a better wife, a better Mom, a much better follower of Christ.

Those things have not changed. 

My daily routine has changed.  But those goals are still there.  Still REALLY there!  With some new challenges mixed in.  As you all know, I work Monday through Friday again.  A new career focus.  New challenges professionally.

But the depth of who I am remains the same.  I struggle to make sure our marriage is growing.  I want to show my husband that he is the head of our family.  I want to get better at giving him the reins in which to lead our family and lead our marriage.  That means that I continue to learn to let go.  Let go of my selfish will.  Let go of my stubborn emotions.  Let go of my need to control!  Go out of my way to encourage him, to support him, to listen to him and to show him how much he means to me. 

I continue to work at this Mama-gig.  There are still numerous lessons to teach our sons.  Many kisses to send their way.  Hugs too.   I still want SH and I to lead their education and growth.  It helps that we absolutely love the Christian preschool that they are attending.  Every day they come home reciting a new Bible verse, talking about how they learned about Christ that day and singing songs over and over and OVER again!!  We are very comfortable that we made the right choice of schools for them to attend.  And they love it so that helps us to feel so very comfortable with the decision.   We are learning more and more every day about their personalities and how that is growing in to the young men they are.  They are set in many ways.  Big Boy continues to be emotional, very sensitive and very thoughtful.  You cannot get a single thing past that boy.  We must carefully choose our words and actions, every day.  Because he picks up on them every. single. time.  Little Guy continues to be the free spirit.  He is goofy and enjoys to be the life of the house!  We must be careful not to assume that means he is silly and reckless because he is not.  He simply does not take any part of life too seriously.  That will help our Type A driven home, A LOT! 

There are goals that I have for 2010.  Every year I try to identify things that I want to accomplish, both for myself and for our family.  This year is no different.  So in no sense of order at all:

1)  Strengthen our family bond with Christ.  SH and I have talked about this and have made some concrete measures to include God in our daily lives.  We pray every day on the way to school with the boys.  We pray at meals.  We pray at other times too.  We talk about our behaviors and how they either please God or displease Him.  We don't attend church as often as we feel like we should.  Let's face it, church is a habit.  And one I feel like we need to strengthen in our entire family.  We are somewhat torn as to what church to attend so that is a journey we must attend to.  We talk about God daily and His sacrifices for us.  We don't talk about our sacrifices for Him nearly as much.  Room for growth in this area, definitely.

2)  Remove ourselves from $50,000 of debt, which will include remaining credit card debt, home equity, student loan and mortgage.  We won't be debt free but we can be closer to the prize!  Definitely something we can do if we really focus.  REALLY focus!

3)  Take charge of my health.  Let's face it.  I'm almost 42 years old.  42 folks.  That is, ahhhhhhh, close to middle age?!  No matter how young I feel.  No matter how late I started with the whole parenting gig (so I feel like I'm 30 with preschoolers, when in reality I'm almost 42 with preschoolers!).  The body is just not gonna hold up like it did 12 years ago.  Time to really start looking at ensuring those healthcare dollars are well spent on prevention!

4)  And as always, there is a smattering of decorating projects, garden plans, weekend trips to plan.  Little things to make family memories.  Those change every other week so I'll keep those on the back burner.

5)  Keep up with the blog.  Even the mundane, inconsequential things.  Because someone may find them mildly entertaining.  And I love going back to read where life has taken us in the past year.