Thursday, July 28, 2011

Thankful Thursday {My BFF}

I have had a very hard time writing this post. Not because I don't know what to say about Carrie, but because there is so much to say and I don't want it to be a jumbled mess! I could tell you that she is the funniest person I have ever met. I could tell you how well we understand each other. I could tell you that I talk to her at least once a day, mostly more. I could tell you she plans the best parties. I could tell you we have been friends for 7 years. I could tell you the first time we talked on the phone (which was also the second time ever that we talked) it was for 2 hours. I could tell you about all the crazy things we have done together. I could tell you many things about her, but I think what I really want to say is this...

One year ago she lost her mom, Betty. (Who by the way was one of the most amazing women I ever met.) I have watched Carrie struggle through the emotions of loosing the closest person to her. And while most of the time it breaks my heart, I have been amazed at the way she has handled it. I know she would give all the glory to God for helping her get through this, which is absolutely the case. However, that would not be possible unless she relied on Him. Carrie would say, and I would agree, that people wanted to be more like Jesus just by being around her mom. I would say, Betty passed that trait to Carrie. I want to be more like Jesus because of watching Carrie grow closer to the Lord through her deep pain.

Today I am thankful for my best friend, Carrie.
You bless my life more than you will ever know!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Back to School Traditions

I know...
is seems crazy that school starts in just 4 weeks.
I think, "that is enough time to have a lot more fun!"
And then I think, "Ohmigoodness! 4 more weeks of summer!"

I love traditions! We have Christmas traditions, Halloween traditions, birthday traditions, end of school year traditions. So it is only appropriate that back to school has traditions too!

Here are a few of my favorite back to school traditions:

Each child gets a "special" day with mom about the week before school. For Carys this usually means getting our nail done, lunch and picking out a back to school outfit. For Broderick it will be a trip to the toy store and a park or indoor play area with lunch also.

The first day of school I will make a fun, healthy breakfast. They will come home to a surprise snack. And for dinner we will go out to eat or I will make a dinner of their choice.

There will be an encouraging note in their lunchbox.
(I usually do this everyday, not just the first day.)

Rob and I will give them a gift after dinner.

I will decorate their bedroom door or the front door to surprise them when they get home.

There will be time spent on the "cuddle chair" talking about their day.
(This is also something that is done each day after school.)

These are just a few of the things that work for me and I can't wait to explore more fun things to do. Tell me, what are you back to school traditions?

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

(Sigh) A Weekend Alone

My husband and I have gone on trips, stayed overnight somewhere and of course gone out for the day or evening without our kids. But never have we had a weekend at home with them gone. Can I just tell you,

it was great!

The kids went with my mom and step dad to their camper so...

it was a win/win for everyone.

We had a weekend alone. Kids had a weekend of fun with grandma and grandpa. Grandma and Grandpa had quality time with the grand kids. Does it get any better for anyone?

Our weekend was filled with rich conversation, spontaneous fun, going deeper in friendships, and genuinely enjoying each other. Here a few ideas of somethings we did and a few we might do next time! to each other with no interruptions. at your favorite stores (not the toy store or grocery store) without someone hiding in the clothes or trailing behind.
... eat every meal out! where you want to! (Not McDonald's)

...stay up late because you know... can sleep in the next day.

...spend time assessing your relationship, parenting, goals, dreams. spontaneous.
(meet up with friends at your favorite restaurant for dessert.)

...getting "chores" done around the house quicker and easier.
(Paint a room, rearrange furniture.)

...Freedom to do WHATEVER YOU WANT!
(seriously...whatever you want! Sounds tempting huh?)

I love my kids!

(As I am sure we all do)

I love them so much that I know I need to get away sometimes by myself and with my true love!

So go...

Plan your weekend alone at home! You won't regret it.

(shh...I am already planning the next one!)

This post is linked up with Top Ten Tuesday at Oh Amanda!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Thankful Thursday

It is that time of the week focus on something I am thankful for. I read this quote yesterday,

"What if you woke up today with only the things you thanked God for yesterday?"

What if? What did you thank God for yesterday? What will you thank him for today? The truth is, I don't thank him enough. And it is so easy to take things for granted! I remember a few years ago when we lost electricity for 8 days. I said during that time, "I will thank God everyday for electricity." Guess what, I haven't.

Around here it has been H.O.T.
(And that is putting it mildly.)
(I think it has been hot across the whole country!)
I took the kids outside for 10 minutes yesterday and was dripping. We needed to get out though. When I walked in my house, I was cooled off within about 2 minutes.

My mom and step dad's air conditioning went out on Monday. Tuesday night it was 84 degrees in their house! That is hot! After talking to my mom I started thinking about people in Africa, Mexico, Haiti and other parts of the world that live in small one room houses. Do you think they have A/C? Uhhh...NO! We are so used to air conditioning and electricity and 3 meals a day. It is so easy to forget about the people around the world that are not and to take these special blessing for granted.

Today I am thankful for air conditioning!

What are you thankful for? (I would love to hear.)

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Keepin' It Real People

Yesterday a friend (well, my best friend) and I were talking, like we do everyday, and we briefly discussed blogging, like we have many times before. She doesn't have a blog, but she totally should. (Another post for another day!) It is so easy to read someone's blog and begin to compare yourself.

...your looks.
...your style.
...your parenting.
...your income.
...your creativity.

Can I just say this is not healthy. To be honest, that is why my blog was private for awhile. I was beginning to compare and think negatively about my self. So I took my blog private and stopped reading other peoples. It helped. Obviously, my blog is public again and I read more blogs than I should. However, I see them through different eyes. My friend made the comment that she read some blogs yesterday and when she was done was feeling down about herself. I don't EVER want people to read my blog and feel that way. I blog because I love to. Because I want a record of all these memories. Because I want to encourage others. Not to make others feel bad or make myself look like something I am not. It is so easy to write what we want others to know about us. To write things to make us look good. To write things so others form certain opinions about us. So today, I am going to be real and let you see some of the real me.
(Because you can't see all of it just this one time!)

I hate exercising, unless it is Zumba, and I love to eat junk food. Most days I don't eat until 2 and if I do it is candy or chips.

I yell at my kids...often.

I am not creative at all. I just copy other peoples ideas.

My kids watch a lot of tv most days.

I struggle with being insecure.

I hate the grocery store and think it is torture to take my children there.

I wanted 5 kids before we had Broderick. I could not handle more than the 2 I have.

My husband and I fight.

Sometimes , okay a lot of the time, I get a bad attitude about doing things for my family.

I love my kids and doing fun things with them, but I also love rest time at 2:00!

I have gotten into this terrible habit of sleeping until about 8:00. My kids play in their rooms if they wake up before that.

My favorite place to shop is Goodwill.

I don't read the Bible or have a devotion with my kids everyday. In fact, Sunday morning Carys said, "Mom, we need to start reading the Bible again." Hows that for conviction!

So there you have it. A few things about me that I wouldn't normally want to share with the masses. is part of me.

Monday, July 18, 2011

WeekEND News

Nothing super exciting happened this weekend, but it was a great summer weekend. Friday night we went swimming at my bff's parents house with her and her family and Family Fun Mom and her family. It was a great time.
(It always is when I get together with these fab ladies!)

Saturday Rob fixed our leaking pipes under the sink...exciting I know! Then we hung around home ALL day! It was blazing hot so the kids played on the slip n slide and with water guns.
Thankfully we got out a little that night. Being home all day can make yours truly a little nutso!
Sunday we went to church and then went to the pool for the afternoon. I love the pool. It is fun to watch Broderick go off the board and swim in the "deep" part. He is getting so big!
Sunday night we had pizza and movie night of course. This week we decided to grill pizza. It was amazing! I will for sure do this again!
I laid out different toppings for everyone and we all made our own.
My finished product...ham and sauerkraut! Sounds gross I know, but it was delicious!

Last night I also decided to start running. My friends had told me about the couch to 5k program, so I did day one last night in the rain. It was actually kind of fun! When I got home I read an encouraging post and article.
Both of them changed my perspective for the week.

This week I am saying yes to...
playing with my kids.
serving my family.
eating good.
being joyful.
getting up early to read my Bible.
having fun.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Shake you hair feathers

Over the years I have had many hair styles...
short and blonde...

short dark and flippy...

long and normal color.

And this has all been in the last 4 years! (Believe it or not there a couple I didn't even post!)
You see, my sister is a stylist and has been since I was in high school. I have always let her do pretty much whatever whenever. I love playing around with my hair and doing fun things. Right now I am trying to grow it out a bit. (Don't worry in few months it will be short again.) So when my sister told me her salon was getting feathers of course I was all about it!

Do you like?

Did you really think this girl was getting out of there with out a purple feather and pink tinsel!?
Not a chance!

~Next I might be posting pictures of a tattoo. Whatta think!?~

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Thankful Thursday

Yesterday I had the privilege of helping a lady I had never met. Ya see, she cut her Achilles tendon and can not put weight on her foot for 8 weeks. Do you remember about a year ago when I had stitches in my leg and couldn't do anything for about one week? Well, I do. And I hated it. I remember laying on the couch thinking, "I really just want to sweep my floor, or wash those fingerprints off the front door."

When the opportunity presented itself to help this lady clean, I signed up. (Remembering how I felt.) I have to admit, I felt a little weird going to a complete strangers house and saying, "Hi, you don't know me. I have seen you at Zumba twice before. Anyhow, I am here to clean." I am sure she felt weird too. Either way, I was happy to be there and willing to do whatever she requested. (Turns out as I was cleaning I recognized a picture of her husband. He had spoke at our church before and mentioned his wife's blog. Which of course I checked out and loved!)

To tell you the truth, I enjoyed it. My spiritual gift is service and I love doing it.
(Most of the time!)
Sometimes it just takes simple things to make people smile. And who doesn't love to smile!?

Today I am thankful to serve others and bring them a little bit of happiness!

Tell me friends...
What are you thankful for this Thursday?

PS. Check back tomorrow to see my new hair do!!! I have a little surprise!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

I have been flying for over a week!

Have you ever heard of the Flylady?
If you haven't you must check her out!

I was first introduced to her about 2 weeks ago. I am so thankful!

For any of you that know me, you know I love a clean house. I mean like, LOVE, a clean house.
Of course, with kids and summer, and trying to have a life, it can be very difficult.
(My house is small, so it isn't super hard to clean but I still feel like I am taking time away from my kids when I do.)

So, back to the flylady.
Among many other things, she gives you a "job" each day. She designates everything in your house a zone. Then each day you spend 15 minutes cleaning something in that zone. The best part...she tells you what to do. It always seems to be something you (I) don't normally think of.

Cleaning off your fridge.
Wiping fingerprints off doors.
Washing rugs in the bathroom.


There a few things I don't really do. Not because I don't like her idea, I just prefer to do it differently. For example she says to get dressed each morning right your shoes. I don't like wearing shoes in my house so I put on my slippers. This is also hard in the summer because I like to veg out with the kids in the morning in our jammies and drink coffee. (I drink the coffee, not the kids, and a lot of it.)
She also says to do a load of laundry a day. Ugh! I hate laundry so the idea of doing it everyday makes me sick! I understand for some of you with large families this works. I prefer to do it all in one day two times a week. I feel like the hamper is empty for at least a minute!

Somethings I absolutely love...
(besides what I already mentioned.)
She has a kids zone too! They are responsible for their rooms and she assigns them jobs as well.
Each day she includes 15 minutes of exercise and decluttering!
Sunday is your day of rest and spiritual "cleansing."
Her lingo is so fun. Flybabies - that's me. Super Fling Boogie. Swish and swipe.
Swish and Swipe. Ohmigoodness...this is amazing! Love it! (Can you hear me singing!)

All this to say it works for me!
Now go check out We are that family and see what else works for others!

Monday, July 11, 2011

WeekEND News

(I have no pictures for you from this weekend so you will have to use your imaginations!)

We went camping with my mom and step dad. They have a camper and it is really fun. I just love camping. Ya know how I said the drive in was becoming my favorite summer activity, well, I think camping is too! My dream is to one day have and RV. (My husband on the other hand feels differently.) I love the getting away and being outside.

We went out on the boat and swam in the lake.
(First time my kids have ever swam in a lake.)

We watched a firefly firework show.
(God's creation is so cool!)

We ate!
(of course!)

We sat by the fire.

We laid in the hammock.

We did puzzles.

We rode on the golf cart.

We swam in the pool.

It was a great weekend.

Oh and last night, we capped off the weekend with movie night. You are never going to guess what we watched.

Really! I want you to guess. Here's a hint...the never is a clue.

First person to get it right gets a prize!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Thankful Thursday

We have been doing all kinds of fun things this summer...

Camping, swimming, hiking, jumping, riding, laughing, driving, playing.

You name it, if it is a summer activity we have or are doing it.

I have really enjoyed having the kids home and spending time with them.
(Call me crazy! I am sure when August comes I will be ready to send them back to school.)

I don't think there has been a summer that I have enjoyed this much.

Today I am thankful for summer!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

How do you road trip?

With Summer upon us I am sure many of you are traveling.
My family just got back from a 9 our road trip. This is a trip we have made countless times so I have it down to a science pretty much. Broderick was 4 weeks old the first time we took this trip with kids. (That was not the best trip, but I have learned a lot since then.)

Before we go, I have the kids each pack a bag full of toys.

We load up on snacks. I pack each kid their own snack bag that is right by them so whenever they want one they can reach it.

We pack special car games (Card games like "Would you Rather" Super fun.) and coloring pages.

Of course, there are movies, DS, Leapsters.

And there are always gifts handed out throughout the trip.

Traveling can really be a fun thing.
(It can also make you want to stick your head out the window like dog and scream.)
I mean when else do you get to spend 9 hours with your family.

I linked up with We Are that Family for WFMW. Go check her blog out!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

WeekEND News

What a fun packed weekend we had! Friday night the kids each got a new toy...

How fun do they look!? Saturday was filled with the pool and sun. Sunday we went to the water park and drive-in movie. (The drive-in is becoming one of my favorite summer things to do!) Monday we met Ab Lincoln...
a Stormtrooper...
went mining...
rock climbing, saw fireworks and had a blast!

I am looking forward to this short week and have a lot of fun stuff to blog!

Hope you all enjoy your week!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Once a Month Resolution

Did you notice I forgot June? And truth be told, I kind of took May off too! Not really because I was working on eating and exercise. (Which is a constant battle.) Just to refresh you all...

January = Exercise

It has been okay. It isn't 5x every week, but I am doing more than I ever have.

February = Eating habits

Some days are good, some days are bad. I have this great friend at The B.M.C. Report that eats very healthy and exercises often. I have thought for awhile that if she knew what I ate, I would be embarrassed. So I started texting her everyday with what I was eating. It has been a huge help. With it being my birthday month things have been a little off, but again...better than it used to be.

March = Read more to my kids

This has been going well. The summer reading club at the library helps for sure.

April = Green cleaning

This has been great. I am still using only vinegar and getting ready to switch my dishwasher detergent.

May = Focus on eating and exercise

Now that you are up to date I am sure you are wondering what July will bring. To be honest, it has been difficult to decide. There is so much I want to do. I am going to focus on something that will benefit my whole family.

I am going to try a new recipe for dinner once a week and try to only have beef 2 times a month.

There you have it. Continue to pray for me and my endeavors!