Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Works for Me Wednesday

A couple of weeks ago when I had to go get Christiana and Josiah supplies for camp I decided to start off at the Dollar Tree. I'm so glad I did. Remember those travel size soaps and toothpastes that use to cost about 50 cents at Walmart? Well, they are no longer 5o cents. You pay about 97 cents for a little tube of toothpaste and a small bar of soap. Well, not for me any longer. I have learned that you can go to the Dollar Tree and buy two full size bars of Irish Spring or Dial or a couple of other brands for only $1. You can get deodorant, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, toothbrushes and snacks from there and get more than the little sample sizes. So, from now on when going on a trip somewhere we will always go to the Dollar Tree first and get full size items. Works for Me!

For more Works For Me Wednesday ideas visit We Are THAT Family.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Big Helper

I love that our little guys enjoy helping around the house and what better time to encourage them to help but now when they are so willing to do so. Jonathan felt like such a big guy when his Daddy let him use the weed whacker to trim around the porch. He did a great job and so enjoyed it. So I say, "Why not," with continued practice he'll get better and better before long he'll be able to do it on his on ( in a few years before he does it with no supervision).

I believe we do our children a disservice by not giving them the opportunity to help. We are not taking their childhood away from them when we have them do chores. We are, however, helping them be more responsible and giving them skills they will need as adults. Keeping a home, cooking and cleaning does not just come naturally when they become adults, it's much better that they receive training while in the safe learning environment of home. And it's never too early to start.

Did you have chores as a child and are you grateful, or maybe you didn't and had to learn everything on your own as an adult? How did your experience make a difference in your adulthood?

Monday, June 28, 2010

Pregnancy Update

Thought I would send out an update on my pregnancy for those of you wondering how it's going so far. I am about 11 weeks and doing well. I have a little pooch already and not much nausea anymore. I am still tired a lot. I do have days where I will have lots of energy and I will accomplish things like rearranging and de-cluttering our master bedroom or tackle projects like cleaning the boys room (with the boys, of course). Then I will have days where I don't even feel like I have the energy to crawl out of bed. That's all quite normal for me.

I spoke to a midwife this week and I'm planning another home birth. I love having my babies at home. I've had my last two at home and only wish I had known about birthing at home from the very beginning. I'm looking forward to meeting her and getting to know her.

I will keep you posted as I go. I'm due January 12th for those who don't know, but I normally tend to deliver at 41 weeks instead of 40 weeks so this date is just a ballpark idea for me. The interesting thing about this is that our last baby was born on January 12th and a week after his birthday is Kaitlyn's birthday so we will just have to wait and see what happens. Will someone share their birthday? Who knows :)

Friday, June 25, 2010

They're Coming Home Today!

Christiana and Josiah

Monday, Christiana and Josiah headed out to youth camp with our church youth group for five days. We have missed having them here at home and are so excited that they are coming back home today. This is the first time they have gone to youth camp and the first time they have been away for five days straight. I'm sure there will be lots of stories to hear from them about all their adventures. I'm looking forward to hearing what God has done in them during their time at camp. Can't wait to see them and squeeze them tight.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

More Garden Fun

So yesterday we decided to take care of some garden harvesting. Since it's still only the beginning of our harvest we are just starting to get a few things.

Picking green beans with the kiddos
Kaitlyn picking green beans

After we got back in the house we cut and cleaned our green beans added them to what we had gathered the other day and had enough to can 5 quart jars. I was so excited because it was the first time I had ever canned green beans as well as the first time I had gotten to use my new pressure canner. It was very simple and now I can't wait to do more canning.
My canned green beans (don't they look great!)

So for supper that night I decided to use some more garden goodies and we had quiche with zucchini and cheese. I also cooked up a batch of green beans that wouldn't fit into another jar for canning. They turned out great, everyone loved the quiche and asked for seconds.

Zucchini and cheese quiche

Supper plate, quiche with garden fresh green beans. Yum!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Garden Veggies

Zucchini bread

Kaitlyn helping cut green beans

Micah helping cut green beans

Garden fresh green beans

I grew up on a small family farm and one of my favorite times of the year was summer when all our garden veggies were ready to be harvested and prepared for meals. One of the things I loved most was stringing and cutting green beans. Everyone would gather together in my grandma's living room and help string and cut the couple of 5-gallon buckets full of green beans. I loved the smell of the beans and the fellowship of everyone hanging around together and helping.

This week two of my older children got the chance to help me with our first batch of green beans from our garden. I didn't have a 5-gallon bucket full but I did have a large bowl full once we were done. My kids were so excited to help and the smell of the fresh cut green beans took me back to a time when I was young and helping my grandma.

That morning we had fresh zucchini bread for breakfast with the first zucchini from our garden. It was delicious and eaten up rather quickly.

I love gathering and cooking fresh veggies that we planted and I can't wait until my tomatoes are ready, they are my favorite fresh garden veggie (I could live off of tomato sandwiches all summer).

I'll keep you posted as more veggies come in and on my storing plans. I plan to do some canning if I get enough veggies to do so. Our family eats quite a bit as it comes in, so we'll see how that goes. Until then blessings to you and yours.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Pics from Camping

Kaitlyn, Micah and Josiah on the canoe

Joshua and I

Jim roasting hotdogs

Jonathan and Matthew behind him

Kaitlyn, Christiana, Josiah and Joshua having fun

Friday night we went camping and as always we had fun. I just thought I would share a few pictures from our trip. The kids also got to go swimming Friday night as well as Saturday morning before we left. It's always fun to get together and do something as a family. So glad we live pretty close to two nice campgrounds. Looking forward to camping again.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Going Camping

We are so excited to be taking our first summer camping trip of the summer. As part of Micah's birthday celebration we are heading out to camp. We love camping and we camp in a tent not a camper. We do cheat and use air mattresses and find a place that has shower facilities, but we love the smell of a camp fire and the whole atmosphere that surrounds camping. We love the fact that our children love it too and it doesn't cost much. We usually try to find a place that offers some type of swimming, whether it be a lake or pool.

So, that's what I'm getting ready for, packing and preparing in between posting this blog. Hope everyone else out there has fun plans for the weekend. Be blessed.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

It's Micah's 8th Birthday!

Today is Micah's 8th birthday and we are having fun celebrating with the house decorated and having all his favorite meals today. Tonight we will have ice cream cake after supper and this weekend we plan on camping (his request for his birthday).

Micah is my sweet, compassionate, thoughtful, funny, smart little boy. I enjoy being around him because he makes me laugh and he loves to cuddle. He has been a joy and a treasure ever since he joined our family and I am so thankful to be his Mom. I wonder sometimes how I was chosen to be so blessed as to be his Mom. For whatever reason, God looked down and gave him to me and I am so grateful He did.

Micah, I love you so much. Happy Birthday, Sweetheart.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Why Not?

Kaitlyn and Matthew catching rain

All the kids getting wet


Christiana, Joshua and Kaitlyn


So many times I find myself saying "No"to my kids when they ask to do things. Not because they shouldn't do it but because of the inconvenience that it causes me and I just don't feel like dealing with it. Well, I'm now trying to do better.

I can't tell you the number of times my kids have asked to play in the rain and I said "No" because I didn't want to deal with all the wet kids that would come tracking dirt and water into my house, in wet clothes that would need to be changed. Then I stop and think, how many times as a kid that I wanted to play in the rain and how much fun it would have been. Then I start thinking, "Why not?" I mean really, there's no reason to say "No" except my inconvenience, and how much fun would the kids have if I just said "Yes." It's really not that much extra work and why deny them of the fun I always wanted to have when I was a kid.

So Monday I finally gave in and let them play in the rain. They had so much fun. Their smiles and laughter were worth the little bit of mess they made when they came in and to be perfectly honest, it wasn't that much of a mess. I just handed each one a towel when they came in and had them change their clothes. Wet stuff went directly into the washing machine and that was it.

How many times do we as parents tell our kids "No" when there is really no reason why they can't do as they request? I'm not saying that we need to tell our kids "Yes" to everything, but do we really need to tell them "No" as often as we do?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Training Them Up

Yes, that's my three year old folding laundry. He loves to help fold towels and washcloths and he is actually quite good at it. I always lavish him with praise at how good he did and let him know how much I appreciate his help. I get, in return, a huge hug and smile. I love it.

Do you have your little ones help out with chores? If not encourage them now to do what they can to help. The little ones actually enjoy it more than the older ones, and they will be less likely to argue with you about it. So encourage the little ones and always remember to smother them in praise as they help. It will also make them want to help again next time. Got to love sweet little helping hands. I know I do.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Garden Update

Cutting some lettuce for lunch

Our first zucchini


Christiana in the garden

Future squash

Our garden is doing great. God is truly blessing it. We are so excited and can't wait to start harvesting fresh veggies to eat. I'm also looking forward to canning and freezing some of our harvest.

Today we cut some of our lettuce and enjoyed a delicious salad for lunch. The kids that don't even usually eat salad enjoyed it because it came from our garden (makes a happy Mommy). And some kids even had seconds, of salad :)

Do any of you have gardens, and if so how are they doing? I love gardening, anyone else out there feel the same way? Let me know.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Brotherly Love

Each day before VBS I have had the little guys take a nap. Sometimes in my bed sometimes on the living room couches. On this particular day they were in my bed and this was what we found when we went to make sure they were asleep. I thought it was a sweet picture. I like to think of it as brotherly love :)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Courageous-The Movie

For those of you out there who haven't heard, the makers of Flywheel, Facing the Giants, and Fireproof are producing a new movie called Courageous. It is about how honor begins at home with Fathers. An inspiring movie to encourage good relationships between Fathers and their children. It will be in theaters in 2011. In the meantime you can keep up with production through their website as well as through Facebook and Twitter. Their website is Check it out and keep them in prayer as they are winding down and almost done with filming. I can't wait until this movie comes out and I hope everyone gets a chance to see it. Blessings to you all.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Kidz Blitz

Friday June 4th was our VBS kick off and we had Kidz Blitz as our kick off show. It was a Nickelodeon type game show where kids got involved and played games to help win points for their team. The whole show had a Christian theme and was lots of fun for kids and parents.
I was so excited when our 10 year old, Kaitlyn was called to go on stage. When she got there she found out she was going to play a game called Chicken Bone. It is the most difficult game of kidz blitz and not everyone wins. If she could complete three tasks in one minute she would win 2 points for her team and have her name posted on the Kidz Blitz website as one of the winners of Chicken Bone. Her first task was to step into a blue bag and put on an oversized t-shirt.
Then she had to go to a large jar of gunk (they called it alligator snot from deep in FL) pull out a whistle, get the gunk out and blow it. .
Then she had to step over to a circle and pick up a water bottle and spray water onto toilet paper that had a rubber chicken hanging from it, and wet the paper enough to make and chicken drop. She needed to do all this in one minute. And She Did!!! We were so proud of her. (Sorry no pic of her shooting at the chicken, my camera didn't process the previous pic fast enough to get the next pic I wanted).
We had a great time. We cheered and laughed and clapped and had a blast. It was a great kick off for VBS and I look forward to them coming again next year.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

First Night of VBS

Beginning to decorate my VBS room

My kids enjoying the mats

Some color added to the room

City scape with a little added color

So yesterday was our first night of VBS and it all ended in a successful night and my head spinning in a whirlwind as the night seemed to fly by in a blur. I had 15 four year olds in my class. (There are two other four year old classes with just as many kids in them as well). The night did seem to fly by in a blur and as quickly as it started it seemed it was over.

Our theme this year is Hero Headquarters and we speak each night about ordinary people in the Bible being heroes for God and we want these kids to realize that they can be heroes for God, too.

With four more nights to go I'm looking forward to getting to know my class kids better and watching them grow in their knowledge of God. I'm honored to be a part of these kids lives and pray that I do my part in teaching and loving them as they deserve.

As an added note I did get home and get to bed last night and rest in this morning. I'm feeling better and ready for the day. God is good and He is our strength in our weakness. I'm so thankful to serve a living God who cares about me and the kids in this VBS.

Monday, June 7, 2010

VBS - Not Me Monday

I did Not wait until yesterday to make posters for my VBS class that starts today. I did Not go to Walmart after midnight because I was told that was the best time to get cardboard boxes. I did Not come home and stay up with my husband and three oldest kids until after 3 am. Once in bed I did Not bring my one year old to bed with me (because he woke up and I wanted everyone else to be able to sleep). He did Not keep me awake until 4:30 am and then get me up and 8:12 am. I am Not tired and praying for the energy to get through today :) (However, I know that God is my strength and He will help me make it with plenty of energy until I can get home and crash.) VBS is going to be great and believe it or not I'm really looking forward to tonight and meeting all those precious faces I get to spend the week with.
Christiana helping Jim with one of his posters

Jim showing how he wants it done

Me helping with one of Jim's posters

Josiah tracing

Kaitlyn and Jonathan helping