Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Monday, December 29, 2008


I got to thinking about New Year's resolutions. I didn't make any last year. I figured why start something you know you won't finish...but then, I discovered that often if you don't make a plan you don't do anything.

The real reason I started thinking about it was due to church attendance yesterday. It was low...really low...but we had tons of visitors. At first, I thought they were mostly visiting family...but the more I listened and paid attention during was people realizing they needed to get back in church, going for the holiday, etc.

That train of thought led me to...what is a resolution anyway? What brings that on? Off to Webster's I go...
resolution-a decision to do something or to behave in a certain manner; "he always wrote down his New Year's resolutions".

For me, resolutions carry a certain amount of regret. For example, you regret your bad eating habits and you resolve to eat a more balanced diet and exercise everyday. You feel guilty about your spiritual resolve to read the Bible and pray everyday. Maybe, you decide to take your family back to church, start doing more than just attending, etc. You regret the time you've lost with hubby and resolve to read more together, play more, enjoy more...

For myself personally, I need to make resolutions. I think they encourage and drive me to improve from year to year. I believe a key is to be realistic in my expectations. Maybe exercising three times a week is more doable!? As to what brings this all on...maybe it is just the sentiment of the season...but I wish it happened more throughout the year. This feeling...of unworthiness...humility...might just keep us going to truly change that which we resolve to do.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Advent Conclusion...

We just concluded our first year of celebrating Advent. We made changes as we went along and came out with something we really liked. We added a song to each night in addition to the scripture verse, prayer and candle lighting.
First Candle symbolizes HOPE--so we sang, "O Holy Night"
Second Candle symbolizes PEACE--so we sang, "Silent Night"
Third Candle symbolizes JOY--so we sang, "Joy to the World"
Fourth Candle symbolizes LOVE--so we sang, "Jesus Loves Me"
Fifth Candle symbolizes CHRIST--so we sang, "Away in the Manger"

A song was added each Sunday night...and by the last night it was a lot of singing. The kids really seemed to like this...Caleb grinned and bopped very cutely! Emma belted out Jesus Loves Me and Away in the Manger. It was neat. They loved the candles...and were very good while Daddy prayed and read the Bible! Overall, I'd say it is something we will look forward to eagerly next year. Every year we will be able to share more and more with them!

Here is a picture of our Christmas dinner table. We set a place for Jesus' and talked about it being His birthday. We talked about Him being in heaven ('cuz Emma wanted to know where He was, 'cuz His seat was empty) and we remembered His being born in the manger. We sang Happy Birthday to Jesus too!

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Thursday Thirteen...

Thirteen Things I Like About Christmas.... (okay, it's lame...but I can't think of anything else)...

1. This year I enjoy being HOME and not travelling!

2. Lots of smiles!

3. Snow...even if we didn't get any this year.

4. Playing with the stuff you've been looking forward to....especially since as an adult I usually pick my own gift out anyhew!

5. This year we are loving advent...CAN'T WAIT to light the final candle tonight. Pictures are coming!!

6. All the fun Christmas movies on TV at the same time!

7. Relatives close...and calling if they aren't!

8. Grams...she gets her own slot this year cuz she's here in person!

9. Good Christmas books to read...Greatest Christmas Pageant Ever!!!

10. The Bible story...from Luke...always is wonderful!

11. Time with my hubby. It feels like Saturday when he's home! The kids love that!

12. Lots of cookies. They are SOOOOOO good...for you!

13. Remembering the REAL reason for this celebration....the birth of JESUS CHRIST...our LORD...and SAVIOR!!!

Thursday Thirteen is ending...this will be my last one...I guess! This just figures... Everytime I start a new Meme they end it. Maybe it's me...just kidding! Here is their final case you are interested.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Fall Into Reading Wrap-Up!

Fall Into Reading 2008 was great! To see my list click here. Since I only made it 10/15 I guess I should say my list was unrealistic but that's not quite what happened. I was sidetracked by some other great reads! I will be ready for next year...with only books I REALLY want to read.

Here are a list of some of the books that sidetracked me from my FIR books...

Rett MacPherson's Torie O'Shea Mysteries

Joanne Heim's Living Simply

L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables and Emily series

Louis Lamour's The Sacketts

Keep's good for the 'ole MomE brain!

Memory Monday...Matthew 2:10-11

When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceedingly great joy.
And when they came into the house, they saw the young Child, with
Mary, His mother, and fell down and worshiped Him.

Well, close...I had entered instead of came into....forgot the young...and had His mother, Mary instead...oops!

I think I'm going to memorize the angels' speech to the Shepherds for next week!

MERRY CHRISTMAS to my fellow MMers!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

Fill in the lyrics...with the correct ones or ones of your own :-) Have fun with this, don't worry if you don't know 'em...just make up something silly or do a silly one and a serious one! The most important part is to have fun with it.Here we go!

1. Said the night wind to the little lamb, do you see what I see? Way up in the sky, little lamb? A star, a star. Dancing in the night, with a tail as big as a kite...with a tail as big as a kite!

2. The first Noel, the angel did say,Was to certain poor shepherds In fields as they lay; In fields where they lay Keeping their sheep, On a cold winter's night That was so deep. Chorus:Noel, Noel, Noel, Noel, Born is the King of Israel.

3. Go, tell it on the mountain, Over the hills and everywhere. Go, tell it on the mountain, That Jesus Christ is born..

4. It came upon the midnight clear,That glorious song of old, From angels bending near the earth, To touch their harps of gold: 'Peace on the earth, good will to men, 'From heav'n's all-gracious King. The world in solemn stillness lay, To hear the angels sing!

5. Have yourself a merry little Christmas, Let your heart be light. From now on our troubles will be out of sight.

6. It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas soon the bells will start And the thing that will make them ring is the carol that you sing is right within your heart.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to pizza and a christmas movie with just us, tomorrow my plans include Christmas with Grandma and Grandpa Wells, and Sunday, I want to take a long nap but I'm going to clean all afternoon in prep for my Grandma's visit!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Thursday Thirteen...

So, I thought I'd try something new...Thursday Thirteen looked fun and different...I had no idea it was so they say, "It's more than a Meme, It's a microcosm." I looked up microcosm for ya'll...according to Webster's it means A little world; miniature universe. A relatively small object or system considered as representative of a larger system of which it is a part.

Thirteen of my Favorite Christmas ranked order.

1. Springerlie (This is an old Dutch family recipe...anise flavored..ugly...and very addictive)

2. Raisin Filled Cookies (Jack and Mary Vaughn makes the very best!)

3. Molasses Cookies In our family we argue about Henry C. (my great grandfather's) or Mary V's (family friend family)

4. Jelly Jewels These have a blob of jelly in the middle. In my opinion they should be bite sized and made with jelly that tastes good...not looks NO MINT JELLY...yuck!

5. Snickerdoodles Cinnamon and sugar...yummo!

6. Frosted Sugar Cookies I don't want many...but they are fun...Can't wait to do this with Emma this year!

7. Apricot Balls (gluten free--I almost got really sick eating these last year. My Mom made me A LOT of them!)

8. Citrus Macaroons (gluten free--my hubby loves these. They aren't very citrusy...I wonder if I could add an extract.)

9. Pumpkin Cookies (another of my hubby's favorites..of course he loves pumpkin pie so...)

10. Chocolate Crinkles (cuz they are easy and quick to make)

11. Gingerbread Men (yes, have to have legs to bite off too.)

12. Peanut Butter Fingers (yes, I know...not really a cookie but work with me people!)

13. Pecan Pie (I think this is only fair...because should be a cookie!)

Wordless Wednesday...

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Atheist to Theist Poetry...

This sign is posted in Olympia, Washington. It got me to thinking of a version of my own.
Here's is their version....

At this season of
may reason prevail.
There are no gods,
no devils, no angels,
no heaven, or hell.
There is only
our natural world.

Religion is but
myth and superstition
that hardens hearts
and enslaves minds.

by the Freedom from Religion Foundation

Here is my version...

At this season of
may hope prevail.

There is a GOD,
and nothing separates us from His love.
Not death, nor life, nor angels
nor principalities, nor powers
nor things present or things to come.

Not height, or depth
or any other creature
can separate us from the
Love of GOD
which is in

Religion is but a belief system.
Only by basing it on
Jesus Christ
the gracious gift of Christmas
can any one's
heart be saved
and mind renewed.

by Roberta Wells (and Romans 8:37:39)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Memory Monday...Isaiah 9:6-7 NKJ

"For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called,
The Mighty God,
The Everlasting Father,
The Prince of Peace.
And of the increase of His government and peace there will be no end."

Some of my punctuation was off. I used shall instead of will...and added THEs were they shouldn't be. My biggest knowing Handel's Messiah too well!

Some deeper study....I used the Webster's dictionary...

Wonderful- exciting wonder; unusually good. Also, marvelous and admirable.
Counselor- giver of advice.
Mighty God- the sovereign Creator characterized by great power.
Everlasting Father- a man who has begotten a child who is lasting or enduring for all time.
Prince of Peace- the ruler of the state of tranquility and quiet. Giver of freedom from oppressive thoughts or emotions. Monarch of harmony is personal relations.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

The Bethlehem Star

I was intrigued to hear this story on Fox News, "Scholar Suggests Sun, Moon, Planets Aligned to Create Biblical Star of Bethlehem." I am always fascinated when a Biblical story is proven by science. Evidently, I'm among the minority in thinking/knowing that December 25th held no Biblical significance. I'm afraid, I'm also odd in my belief that something can be supernatural and scientific. I guess that comes from believing in the Creator and His marvelous abilities!

I searched and searched for a picture of this nova, planet, comet, occultation, conjunction, whatever....but none are as great as my imagination. There was some pretty interesting stuff out there though! It was so neat to read this around this time of year. One article talks about how the wise men could have seen the "constellation" rise in the sky...and then followed its' movement. Fascinating!

On a side note, I'm a bit of a nut where the wise men are concerned anyway. I firmly believe that they weren't present at Christ's birth. In Matthew 2:11, it specifically called Jesus a "young child" upon their arrival. Other evidence would be the fact that evil King Herod has all babies killed under the age of 2 (Matthew 2:16). As a mother, that just makes my heart cry. All that to say, I don't like to see the wise men next to the baby in nativity scenes. In our house...they are across the room on the bookshelf. In case you're wondering the space between the piano and bookshelf is a span of a few years! Ha ha ha!
Also, any ideas what they did with the gold, frankincense and myrrh? I'd like to research what those things were used for in biblical times. Gold...easy enough...monetary. I wonder if they could be used in sacrifices. I was chit chatting as I got my teeth cleaned yesterday (already the wheels of this blog were turning) and my dental hygienist suggested that maybe they could use the spices to smell better...'cuz they didn't bathe as often back then. Interesting.
Hope this story comes alive to you this year. Re read the story if you haven't in a while. I've heard it a bunch...but it was different this year!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Christmas Meme...

I decided to join this Christmas Meme because it is fun. Plus, I'm having blogger's block.

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate?Coffee

2.Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree?Santa doesn't bring us presents.

3. Colored lights on house/tree or white?White.

4. Do you hang mistletoe?Nope, but I have a plastic piece I think about hanging each year. I'm not quite sure how to attach it above a doorway.

5.When do you put your decorations up?It used to be the day after Thanksgiving but with advent it was week before.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish (excluding dessert)?Uhhhh...pecan pie. Not only for dessert!

7. Favorite holiday memory as a child?Putting on the real records and decorating the tree together as a family.

8.When and how did you learn the truth about Santa?I had a talk with my Dad in the car. I asked him if Santa was real. He, in typical Dad fashion, answered with a question, "How do we know if something is real or not?" I said, "Well, it would be in the Bible." He nodded. I was silent for a bit...and then asked, "Is Santa in the Bible?" He said, "No." And that was it. I was satisfied with that answer.

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve?Yes--pajamas.

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree?We use gold ribbon from our wedding as garland. All the ornaments we've gathered over time. Some are from my Grandma...and were made by my Mom when she was little! I'm so excited for them to start being made by my own babies!

11. Snow. Love it or dread it?Love it. Well, if I don't have to drive in it.

12. Can you ice skate?Ugh, ouch...NO!

13. Do you remember your favorite gift?I remember dollies...and their names. I had Danielle Grace (a My Child), Ruth Ann (Cabbage Patch I named after my Grandma because she was in the hospital), Janet Louisa, Gregory James (he was bald)...I have some of my old stuffed animals and remember their names too! I had two Wrinkles names Samson and Boaz! Ahhh, the things you remember.

14. What is the most important thing about the holidays to you?

15. What is your favorite holiday dessert?Springerlie. Well, after Pecan pie!

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition?
Watching Charlie Brown's Christmas.

17. What tops your Christmas tree?A twiggy gold star.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving?Giving.

19. What is your favorite Christmas song?O Holy Night.

20. Candy Canes. Yum or Yuck?I want about one a year. I like to suck them 'til they get a sharp point!

21. What do you want for Christmas?Snow...not a gray one!

22. Do you attend an annual Christmas party?There are always church parties, etc.

23. Do you dress up for Christmas Eve or wear PJ's?Dress up for church.

24. Do you own a Santa hat?Nope.

25. Who do you normally spend Christmas with?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Today, I had an appointment with my friend. We laugh that it is so much cheaper than real therapy! She makes a mean latte too...and always gives me my blue mug!

I've been reading Joanne Heim's book Living Simply and it's caused me to muse on friendships in my life. It is interesting to observe that I've always been somewhat of a loner in my way. I have been friendly with all (even now I have a million happy acquaintances) but only have maybe a handful of close friends. JH brought my mind back to Avonlea where Anne and Diana are "bosom friends" and "kindred spirits." I don't think I've ever had one person that fit that role. Maybe in my husband I find that kindred spiritness but not among women. I generally find women...especially in large groups to be trying! That's the nice way to put it...catty, divisive, cliquish...are other descriptive words. I'm very direct...maybe that's why. I've never been into the high emotion, girly girlness. I'd rather just tell it like it is. I was raised to not exclude anyone...and among girl groups that was seldom normal behavior. As an adult it is easier...but not everything changes.

I've been happy to watch my kids starting to be friends. They are close in age (22 months) and many people have promised me they'll be close. They are just now starting to play together. Granted they aren't always great at sharing but sometimes...they really play. They are friends! This just thrills me! It took me a long time to develop a friend relationship with my own brother...we are about 10 years apart in age...and I know it means a lot to me now! JH reminds us to model friendship for our kids. Do they see us making time for people? Do they hear us care for our friends?

Facebook is a very interesting measure of friendship over the years. Not to get too warm and fuzzy but it has meant a lot to me. Having high school friends that I'd all but forgotten, find me and renew friendship. Having past third graders willingly keep me in their lives as a friend...more than just a teacher. Seeing college friends expand their families and advance their futures. It's neat and surprising.

Friendship means a lot to me.

"As iron sharpens iron, so a woman sharpens the countenance of her friend." Proverbs 27:17

Monday, December 8, 2008

Memory Monday...Jeremiah 17:7-10

"But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.
The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?
I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve."

I struggled with the NIV translation of this. I'm going back to my NKJV next week. I want to make it "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked. Who can know it?" I'm not sure what translation that is really but I have the right idea.

This passage was encouraging to me...that the Lord takes care of those who put their confidence in him. It's also incredibly humbling to remember that he sees my heart and mind and knows what I deserve...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Random Christmas Questions...


1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Gift bags are part of the gift!

2. Real tree or Artificial? Right now, artificial. When I don't have kids that eat things off the floors and knock things over, etc. etc. I might try real! Maybe...

3. When do you put up the tree? Used to be the day after Thanksgiving but now that we are celebrating Advent it goes up just before, with the candles, etc.!

4. When do you take the tree down? New Years

5. Do you like eggnog? I try it every year...and every year I think..."nope...still don't like it."

6. Favorite gift received as a child? I remember being ridiculously excited about my first alarm clock. I must have been about 11 or 12. My parents have it on's really embarrassing! Okay, so I was always very interested in independence and control!

7. Hardest person to buy for? My husband. I just let him tell versa. That way, I'm sure!

8. Easiest person to buy for? Myself...does that count?

9. Do you have a nativity scene? A new one this year! We're soooo excited!

10. Mail or email Christmas cards? Email?? That's just wrong!!!

11.Worst Christmas gift you ever received? Humph...I really, honestly...can't think of anything!

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? White Christmas. I love's a musical!!!!

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? December 26.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? Yeah...Hey...I'm economizing...Go Green, right?

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Springerlie cookies. They aren't the prettiest but they are the tastiest. My husband thinks they are addictive!

16. Lights on the tree? What? People don't put lights on their tree?

17. Favorite Christmas songs? O Holy Night---right where it goes, "Fall on your knees...." I get goosebumps!

18.Travel at Christmas or stay home? Just starting our stay at home traditions!

19. Can you name all of Santa's reindeer's? I thought I could do it with the song...but nope! Can't! Bummer.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Star

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? PJs Christmas Eve...Everything else Christmas morning. Exceptions include...Christmas celebrated early or late with relatives spread around.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? Missing parties because of sick kids, or sick selves!

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? I'm partial to..... Jesus.

24. What do you want for Christmas this year? A purse I ordered for myself...from Darren...ugh...WHAT? and yeah, Merry to the world...!

Wordless Wednesday...

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Advent Begins...

Our house is decked out for advent. Our little tree is for advent...the kids put one ornament on for each day. I'm cross-stitching some neat ones for next this year they are just using tiny balls.

Here are our candles and wreath. Hope, Peace, Joy, Love...Christ!

Here is our new nativity (an early Christmas present)--each year we will be adding some pieces. This year it is Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, the shepherds and the animals. That still gives a LOT to talk about with Emma...and Caleb!
Here is the schedule we are case you're interested....
First Sunday of advent : Hope
light one purple candle to symbolize Hope
Read Isaiah 60:2-3
Extinguish the flame
Second Sunday : Peace
Light two purple candles - Hope and Peace
Read Mark 1:4
Extinguish the flames

Third Sunday : Joy
Light two purple candles (Hope and Peace)
and one rose to symbolize Joy
Read Isaiah 35:10
Extinguish the flames
Fourth Sunday: Love
light all four candles - Hope, Peace, Joy and Love
Read Isaiah 9:6-7
Extinguish the flames
Christmas Eve
After Sunset...Light all four candles
and add the fifth white candle(the light of Christ)
Read Luke 1:68-79 and Luke 2:1-20
Keep the candles lit a bit longer, or safely throughout the evening.

Monday Memory...better late...

1 Chronicles 29:10-13 (NASB...emphasis mine)
"Yours, O Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the victory and the majesty, indeed everything that is in the heaven and the earth; Yours is the dominion, O Lord, and You exalt Yourself as head over all. Both riches and honor come from You, and You rule over all, and in Your hand is power and might; and it lies in Your hand to make great and to strengthen everyone. Now, therefore, our God, we thank You, and praise Your glorious name."

I got home really late last didn't post. This notecard is tatered...and made it through car troubles and stress. It was great to be memorizing scripture. It is TRUE! Greatness, power, glory, victory, majesty, dominion....riches and honor...power and might...Praise His Glorious Name!

I did make a few booboos...I keep flipping "riches and honor" and "power and might" in various ways. Just an honesty check there! Haven't had a chance to think about this weeks' yet...guess, I'll go sit down and decide!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


by George C. Stebbins (1846-1945)

Thanks to God for my Redeemer,

Thanks for all Thou dost provide!

Thanks for times now but a memory,

Thanks for Jesus by my side!

Thanks for pleasant, balmy springtime,

Thanks for dark and stormy fall!

Thanks for tears by now forgotten,

Thanks for peace within my soul!

Thanks for prayers that Thou hast answered,

Thanks for what Thou dost deny!

Thanks for storms that I have weathered,

Thanks for all Thou dost supply!

Thanks for pain, and thanks for pleasure,

Thanks for comfort in despair!

Thanks for grace that none can measure,

Thanks for love beyond compare!

Thanks for roses by the wayside,

Thanks for thorns their stems contain!

Thanks for home and thanks for fireside,

Thanks for hope, that sweet refrain!

Thanks for joy and thanks for sorrow,

Thanks for heav’nly peace with Thee!

Thanks for hope in the tomorrow,

Thanks through all eternity!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tuesday Twilight Review...

Well, I succumbed to the hype and got on the waiting list for "Twilight" by Stephanie Meyer. The movie just came out...and that always sort of "cools my desire." The reviews weren't very good. I talked to a librarian friend of mine and she said she read them all in one week. I generally share her taste in books so had her put me on the list.

So, to my surprise the book was already available from the library. I started it...big mistake. It was so enthralling that I couldn't put it down. I read it all in ONE DAY! And, just for the is really really mean to put the first chapter of the next book at the end like that!!!

So, my review...obviously, I liked it. I haven't seen the movie...and probably won't. Generally, I'm a BIG movie snob--when it comes from a good book. My saying is something like...Read the BOOK!! Case in point...Prince Caspian. Ugh...kissing....argh!

Just a piece of advice (for myself and others)...don't start reading this unless you really have the time. Otherwise, the laundry doesn't get done, the kids don't get attention, etc. etc. Ha ha ha! Thankfully, my husband really loves me and shares my passion for books! It all worked out...he went upstairs and got some finances and paperwork done!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Memory Monday...Romans 12:9-21

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil, cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal but keep you spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with God's people who are in need. Practice hospitality.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. Rejoice with those who rejoice. Mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited. Do not repay evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath. For it is written, "It is mine to avenge, I will repay." says the Lord. On the contrary, "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head. Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."

Not bad...only three minor booboos. I had return instead of repay...the wrath of God instead of God's wrath...and give him something to eat instead of feed him. I'll chalk those up to translation issues.

Next week...I'll be working on 1 Chronicles 29:10b-13. If you'd like more info. on this idea here's the link. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Not I , but Christ...

Not I, but Christ be honored, loved, exalted,
Not I, but Christ be seen, be known and heard;
Not I, but Christ in every look and action,
Not I, but Christ in every thought and word.

Oh, to be saved from myself,
dear Lord,Oh, to be lost in Thee,
Oh, that it may be no more I,
But Christ that lives in me.

Not I, but Christ to gently soothe in sorrow,
Not I, but Christ to wipe the falling tear;
Not I, but Christ to lift the weary burden,
Not I, but Christ to hush away all fear.

Christ, only Christ, no idle word e'er falling,
Christ, only Christ, no needless bustling sound;
Christ, only Christ, no self-important bearing,
Christ, only Christ, no trace of I be found.

Not I, but Christ my every need supplying,
Not I, but Christ my strength and health to be;
Christ, only Christ, for spirit, soul, and body,
Christ, only Christ, live then Thy life in me.

Christ, only Christ, ere long will fill my vision,
Glory excelling soon, full soon I'll see;
Christ, only Christ, my every wish fulfilling,
Christ, only Christ, my all in all to be.

by Mrs. A.A. Whiddington (19th Century)

This is one of my favorite hymns. I was reminded of it this it came up in our Bible study. Elizabeth George also read a poem that went something like this...
"Say NO not only to the wrong and sinful...
but to the pleasant, profitable and good...
If it clogs our chief duty grand and glorious."

She continues to challenge my heart with becoming a woman after God's own heart by making daily time, focusing on my daily walk, with a daily desire for His Word.

"Good. Better. Best.
Never let it rest...
Until your good is better...
And your better best."

Friday, November 21, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. The last band I saw live was Point of Grace in 2001 at Cedarville.

2. What I look forward to most on Thanksgiving is pumpkin pie, no wait, pecan pie, no pumpkin, no....hehehe you get the idea!

3. My Christmas/holiday shopping is always done by Thanksgiving.

4. Thoughts of gluten filled holiday goodies fill my head.

5. I wish I could wear hats without my hair being flattened.

6. Bagpipes make me feel sad and excited all at the same time.

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to relax and enjoy movie night with the fam, tomorrow my plans include getting my unibrow seperated with hot wax, and Sunday, I want to enjoy the Praise Banquet!

To learn more about Friday Fill-ins go Here.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Chocolate Crinkle Cookies...

Emma and I made these out of the Betty Crocker Cookie Book. They were super easy!

One box brownie mix (9 X 13 size)
1/4 c. water
1 egg

Mix into stiff dough!
Spray hands with Pam
Roll into 1 inch balls.
Roll in powdered sugar.

Bake at 350 for 10 minutes.

Chewy and Awesome!!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Fall Into Reading Frozen...

Just wanted to update my Fall Into Reading Challenge stuffs.

I have frozen the following for the winter...
Blue Fairy by Andrew Lang possibly out of print and lost in my library
Twilight by Stephanie Meyer on really really long waiting list at library

I'm still working on...

Being The Parent You Want To Be by Drs. Parrott
It's still going well. My husband and I are reading this together.
The Needle's Eye by Margaret Drabble
Gammage Cup by Carol Kendall
The House That Cleans Itself by Mindy Starns Clark haven't borrowed it from friend yet

I will make a list of the books/authors that have distracted me. There were some really good ones and I wouldn't want anyone to miss out!

To check out my original list go here.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Memory Monday...Romans 12:9-13

I was so excited to hear about this Meme from Kayren and immediately began thinking of which passage I wanted to choose! This is something I've been wanting to do...knowing that I needed to...but not having the gumption or accountability. Thanks for coming up with this idea.

I recently received part of this passage in a letter regarding a sick child. It stuck with me. I want to memorize the entire end of the chapter for next week but here is the first part now.

From Memory: NIV version, emphasis mine

Romans 12: 9-13

"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil, cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Share with the Lord's people who are in need. Practice hospitality."

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Bathroom Redo...

Well, this would be a lot more interesting if I could find the before pictures that I'd taken for ya'll but watcha gonna do? Just imagine blue and white striped wallpaper done by a drunk! The drywall was damaged because they stuck the wallpaper directly to the walls are now Olympic Drifting Dune with a neato crackle texture! HA!

Notice our turtle toy catcher....he totally rocks! Got him at Meijer for under $10. The wall art in white I got at Goodwill for a dollar each. The curtain I got at Walmart.

This white cabinet we got at Lowe's at the end of season sale for 75% off the 25% price. We paid something like $12 for it when it was all said and done! We bought it two years ago when I originally had this crazy plan!

Here's a closer shot of my Goodwill art and the light cover that was here when we moved in!

Emma and I made this fishy art! Tissue paper and Elmer's glue with some water and paint brushes! Lots of messy fun! I made the Jesus loves me piece too! Awww!

So, Grandma...we are all set for you to visit for Christmas. We even have a towel rack for you to use now! Wah hoo!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. Please feel free to send me new recipes.
2. When I get flowers from my hubby I can't help sniffing them occasionally.
3. My favorite thing to cook is Perfect Parmesan Pork.
4. Coffee is something I can't get enough of.
5. That's the thing I love most about Starbucks cards from my secret sister.
6. CNN, ABC, NBC always makes me think to myself, what the heck?
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to priming the bathroom walls tomorrow my plans include painting the bathroom walls and Sunday, I want to go out with some girlfriends for dinner! ...all while caring for a sick baby, of course!

To learn more about Friday Fill-ins go Here.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Thankful Thursday...

I am thankful:

1. ...For a warm house.

2. ...For a great washer and dryer.

3. ...For my sweet babes sleeping through the night...most of the time.

4. ...For a family that loves me.

5. ...For praying friends at church who love me.

6. ...For good Dr.s and insurance.

7. ...For a strong, dependable, hardworking and loving husband.

8. ...For a sanitation dept. that picks up my garbage, sucks up my leaves, and waves to my kids!

9. ...For a patient and loving God.

10. ...For a chance to write my praises down!

Monday, November 10, 2008

Company Picnic at Connor Prairie...

Darren's company had their annual picnic at Connor Prairie this year. A picnic in November could have been a real disaster but we were blessed with a gorgeous the 70s! The hayride was super neat...with the headless horseman riding out! Cool! The kids really enjoyed the animals.

Emma loved this cow milking play area. It was rigged with water so that when you squeezed it "milked" like a real cow!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. My blueprint for success includes God's Word.

2.Sweet Tarts from my kids' Halloween stash was the last candy I ate.

3. The best facial moisturizer I've ever used is Oil of Olay.

4. Starbucks with a friend can be good therapy.

5. I'd like to tell you about my true post election feelings, but I won't.

6. Honesty is my strongest characteristic. (Enthusiasm, Frankness, etc.)

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to filling perscriptions and buying meds tomorrow my plans include taking care of my sick hubby and kids and Sunday, I want to rest and work on Christmas present projects!

To learn more about Friday Fill-ins go Here.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

I Know Who Holds Tomorrow

I don't know about tomorrow;
I just live from day to day.
I don't borrow from its sunshine
For its skies may turn to grey.

I don't worry o'er the future,
For I know what Jesus said.
And today I'll walk beside Him,
For He knows what is ahead.

Many things about tomorrow
I don't seem to understand
But I know who holds tomorrow
And I know who holds my hand.

Every step is getting brighter
As the golden stairs I climb;
Every burden's getting lighter,
Every cloud is silver-lined.

There the sun is always shining,
There no tear will dim the eye;
At the ending of the rainbow
Where the mountains touch the sky.

I don't know about tomorrow;
It may bring me poverty.
But the one who feeds the sparrow,
Is the one who stands by me.

And the path that is my portion
May be through the flame or flood;
But His presence goes before me
And I'm covered with His blood.

by Ira Stanphill

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Voting Victory!

I'm so grateful for my husband's support. He went with me to vote this morning.

Now, that might seem like no big deal to some of you. It means a lot to me. Dealing with the two kids alone wouldn't have been fun.

We waited an hour and a half!

We live in a large precinct...go us!

We could have split it up...him go in the at night...but we wouldn't see each other at all...and the bigger reason...we want them to know this is important.

Emma was very excited to go vote. We even taught her a little cheer....

"No bama, No bama, NO!...GO MCCAIN!"

I said I was going to have her tell it to the exit poll people but we ran out of time. So sad! Some of you may be in shock...yes, this is a partisan post. Gasp!

Oh well, you'll live!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Marriage Monday...

"The Grace of Christian Marriage"

As I was thinking through this topic, I asked my husband to define grace for me. He said, "it's undeserved favor." I like that definition. I've also heard it referred to as unmerited favor...God's sufficiency...God's fullness. As Christians we realize that God's grace is indeed undeserved. "Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound...that saved a wretch like me." But not only are we saved by the grace of God--we also serve the Lord and live the Christian life by the grace of God. Because we realize how important God's grace is to us...and hopefully being humbled by this thought...we bring that grace into our marriages.

1 Pet. 4:8, "Love deeply because love covers a multitude of sins...vs. 10 administering God's grace in its various forms." I was drawn into this passage and back tracked to chapter three. There it talks about a wife's conduct being

...pure and reverent



...humble to live in harmony

...returning insult with blessing!

Wow...that's pretty challenging stuff. So, how do those things play out in my Christian marriage? Well, I've got a lot to work on but by God's grace

...I'm still working at it

...for His Glory!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. My favorite food seasoning is Curry.
2. Naptime quiet is music to my ears.
3. Lucky is really Providence.
4. My relationship with God is something I take very seriously.
5. Many people will be unhappy after Tuesday no matter how it goes.
6. Winter drapes was the last thing I bought at the store (Goodwill, wah hoo).
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sugaring up little beggars at my door,
tomorrow my plans include Christmas photos and the company picnic
and Sunday, I want to REST!

To learn more about Friday Fill-ins go Here.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Good Sport Guests!

We had some friends of ours over for dinner and I bravely (crazily) chose to make something I'd never made before. Both were really good sports about being our guinea pigs for the night. It was a hit...and she asked me to put the recipe on my here ya'll go!
Pepper Ring Burgers (idea taken from Rachael Ray's show...with my seasonings)
1 lb. chicken burg.
1 lb. turkey burg.
1-2 T. Cajun Seasoning (depending on your hotness preference)
2 t. Mrs. Dash Original
3 large peppers (green, orange, yellow, or red)

Smush together burger and spices. Cut peppers into thick rings. Stuff burger into it is the outside border of the burger. Fry on medium heat with a tiny bit of oil...until browned on both side and cooked through. The peppers browned up a bit too!

Serve on nice toasted Kaiser buns. The spicy burgers were offset by the sweet pepper...yummo as Rach would say!

Dream Clouds (from Simply Delicious Magazine)
Served in stemware
Layer of Cool Whip
Layer Mandarin orange slices
Two scoops orange sherbet

It was harder to get this "prettily" into the glasses than you might think. It was light and refreshing!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. Right now, I'm feeling happily exhausted.
2. Curled up in my chair with a book is where I want to be.
3. How does one get it all done?
4. God's Word daily keeps me on track.
5. Please don't whine anymore, dear Emma.
6. My baby's smiles fills me with joy.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to have dinner at our house with friends, tomorrow my plans include oil changes and haircuts...and Euchre Night and Sunday (night), I want to go out on the town with my man.

To learn more about Friday Fill-ins go Here.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Remember the words?

I was listening to our "christian" radio station and was irked by the DJ...don't worry it's a common occurrence. They are doing a fund drive which makes them even more maddening than usual. An older couple sent in a donation with a line from this hymn...the DJ didn't know it...surprise, surprise! I'll save my issues with the station for another blog but here is the hymn...awesome...and the link has it playing!

In My Heart There Rings A Melody

I have a song that Jesus gave me,
It was sent from heaven above;
There never was a sweeter melody,
'Tis a melody of love.

I love the Christ who died on Calv'ry,
For He washed my sins away;
He put within my heart a melody,
And I know it's there to stay.

'Twill be my endless theme in glory,
With the angels I will sing;
'Twill be a song with glorious harmony,
When the courts of heaven ring.

In my heart there rings a melody,
There rings a melody with heaven's harmony;
In my heart there rings a melody;
There rings a melody of love!

Words and Music: Elton M. Roth, 1891-1951

Book Reviews 8 & 9

The Prophet by Frank E. Peretti

I didn't finish it. I couldn't! I don't know what my problem is but I can't handle this book right now. It is too much like what's on the news (elections) and is totally contrary to my belief on prophets and end times. I'll pick it up later...but much later...and try it again. Maybe, it'll be on the list next fall...seeing as the election season won't be so major!

The Busy Mom's Guide to Spiritual Survival by Kelli B. Trujillo

This is a good, practical book. I found that I already did many of these things but it was neat to see someone cared enough to give tips in a book. At first, I thought the title was a bit extreme, "spiritual survival" but after some thought, think it is right on. We need to be serious...very serious...about making God first in our day! I like the concept that even if I get nothing else done but spending time with day is still very well spent!

To check out my Fall Reading List just click here.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Monday Marqee...

Well, it's happened again. You know me and those dumb church marquees. People probably think that I only see the negative ones...or the ones I disagree with but the truth is that I don't feel inspired to write about the ones I agree with...they encourage me and I move on with my day. The others are so irritating that it sort of grinds on me until I decide to write about it and free it to the cyber world.

Today's marquee:

"Lend to God and Earth. They give the best interest."

First, why is Earth even in this equation? Are we now to believe in God and Mother Earth/Father Time? Why is Earth personified? This going green thing is totally getting to me. I believe we are to be good stewards of earth but come on! First, we must remember that God created the earth. He created the earth to bring glory to himself. Not the other way around. Romans 1:25 says, “They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator–who is forever praised.” Worshipping the creation rather than the Creator is idolatry. May I be as bold as to say that this new “green” movement is a form of idolatry. As Christians we must remember that the earth is ours to rule over. God gave us the earth and all that is in it as our domain. However, we must use it and enjoy it in a God-honoring way. We should be careful not to abuse it or destroy it. We must also be careful not to worship the creation. God is the creator, the one who deserves all our praise! The creation reflects God’s glory and because of that we need to respect the creation and care for it and remember that it’s resources are not infinite. Yes, Christians have a great responsibility to the environment, but it is one that is balanced and viewed through the pages of the Word of God. This earth is perishing, but that does not mean that we turn our backs on what God has entrusted to us. We must be excellent stewards of what God has given us! So, “go green”(to the degree that it is reasonable), but remember that it is all for the glory of God!

Second, the word LEND? I believe that it all belongs to God. Looking at it from that perspective it is He that is lending to us...if there is any lending going on. It seems a bit presumptuous to tell a Sovereign God that I'll lend him some of my stuff. I'd be careful with that attitude. You might just find yourself with nothing. On the other hand, John Piper had a great article on Lending to God based on Proverbs 19:17, "He who is kind to the poor lends to the Lord,and he will repay him for his deed. " From that angle we could all improve. This is a great article...check it out.

Third, what is meant by interest? God is interested in us...John 3:16, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." However, I'm assuming this is supposed to be cute from an economic stand point. So, financial interest...well, I'm not a big fan of the health and wealth concept. The Bible does not say that being a christian is going to make us healthy wealthy and wise...quite the contrary. "No servant is greater than his master. If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also" (John 15:20).

Lastly, I will give some points for the idea of our being blessed when we follow him. I do believe that he blesses our obedience. Psalm 1:1-3, "Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night. He is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers." That concept of good interest I can deal with.

Overall, a weird marquee at best.
Happy Marqee Monday!

Saturday, October 18, 2008


This craggy old tree in my back yard inspires me somehow. I find myself creating stories in my head...of climbing into it's branches and reading, of the little fox family who lives in it's trunk, of children imagining mansions in it's branches...

Here's a picture of one of our trees...yellow. When am I going to get a red tree??? I like the red ones best!
I got this chipped aqua pitcher at a junk store and put my fall flowers in it. Doesn't it look cute? I just love seeing this out the window...sitting on the screen inviting to Fall!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday Fill-ins!

1. Follow the will of God for my life.
2. Sunscreen and bug spray are something I always take with me on vacation.
3. To achieve your goals, you must press on toward the prize.
4. I have an awesome, loving, helpful, thoughtful husband... is something I'd like you to know about me.
5. I have a great, gluten-free making, breadmachine.
6. Bubbles floats.
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to Ladies Game Night, tomorrow my plans include rest and mild housecleaning and Sunday, I want to take a nap after church!


Check out Friday Fill-in's Here.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Marriage Monday...

10 Tips for Frugal Living

"The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it."
Proverbs 10:22

This is a timely subject considering the current economy issues. I hope that people who weren't living frugally before will now read these posts and gain tips to help them turn their spending around. Praise God, I married a very frugal man. Trust me...I don't feel that way everyday...but I do see it as God's blessing. God, in His infinite wisdom, knew that I needed a husband who'd track my spending and keep me accountable. The awesome thing is...that He also helped me embrace frugality and truly enjoy saving. He's placed friends in my path to give me tips and encouragement.

So, here are my 10 Tips...

1. Keep track and keep organized. Know where your money is going. We were extreme when we started this...saved receipts...but now we know and don't have to be so intense. I was encouraged to see where the money I was saving was going, etc. It's no fun to be frugal if you don't feel it's helping.

2. It may surprise some of my friends to learn that I shop at thrift stores but...IT IS SO AWESOME. I wear name brands (Claiborne, Hilfiger, Abercrombie, Gap, etc.) and never go outside the thrift store. Some of them still have their tags on them ya'll! I buy shoes and bags the same way. It is so stinkin' cool to me to carry Italian leather bags I'd never get away with buying full price (Darren'd kill me) but get for $2.99 at Goodwill. Same with shoes. I've become so accustomed to shopping this way that it really bothers me to have to pay full price for something.

3. Price matching. I am a huge price matcher at Walmart. You can take an ad from anywhere and if they don't beat the ad price they'll give you the competitor's price for the item. I make out like a bandit when Kroger does 10 for 10. I love this for a number of reasons. I don't have to shop all over the city at multiple stores with two toddlers. Even when I can't beat Walmart's price with an ad...I know I got the lowest price. FYI--this doesn't apply to BOGO deals. Don't ask me why. I'm a big generic fan...especially when I can read that the ingredients are I.D..denticle!

4. Use coupons ONLY FOR THE ITEMS ON YOUR LIST. I know there are some awesome couponers out there. I'm not talking about Dealies with CVS and Walgreens, etc. cuz that's a whole other method in and of itself. If you have the time and energy...go for's worked wonders for tons of my friends. I'm talking about getting sucked into the coupons selling you stuff you didn't need to begin with. So, if you find a coupon for something on your list...use it but don't just use coupons to try stuff out...'cuz usually you're losing money.

5. Plan menus. This keeps you from eating out and helps you keep your shelves and freezer organized. My method is to create the weeks menu on top of my grocery list. Keep your calendar you plan appropriate meals for the day's activities. Then I walk around the kitchen assessing what I need to complete that menu. I then sit down and look at ads to find price matches and coupon matches to the created list. According to my calculations this has saved me about $40 some weeks.

6. Make your own fun. We don't buy the kids toys. We save all wrappings, bottles, etc. and create our own fun. I make my own playdoh, soap paints, etc. Our kids aren't deprived...they do have toys from grandmas and grandpas, etc. We feel this is not only frugal but also will hopefully ward off "little consumerism." We don't want them thinking they are owed toys...and we want them to develop good imaginations.

7. Darren and I make our birthday and Christmas gifts for each other. We usually write letters or poetry. We talked about it...and knew we wanted to pay debt off, etc...and missed those early courting notes anyway! It works out great. For example, just to brag on my man....for my birthday Friday he created a scavenger hunt for me...each verse of a poem took me around the house...until I found my gift. My gift was a bunch of "coupons" for special lovey things. He did sort of cheat this birthday though...and brought home a bag of Dove favorite. I guess, we'll go easy on him! We've decided to celebrate Advent with the kids at Christmas. We really want to emphasize Christ's each child will get only one gift. We will talk about the ONE BIG GIFT of Jesus', have Jesus' birthday party, etc.

8. One date night a month. Wait, this is money is that frugal? Well, it's an investment. I heard a funny quip once, "Pay for dates now, or pay for counseling later."

9. I've made all Caleb's baby food (exception of Rice Cereal) mostly due to his allergies. I was calculating though...and that's saved us a lot of money. There are all sorts of great baby food making tips out there. I love my book, "Super Baby Food."

10. Bless others. I love doing meals for new babies, getting hot cocoa for the Salvation Army bell ringers, etc. I truly believe that if we give as we are able...God blesses this. "Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the LORD your God which He has given you." Duet. 16:17 Don't hold onto the money so hard it screams. It doesn't belong to you. Be wise...but remember it needs to be used for Jesus' as we tell our quarter hoarding three year old. All those quarters you "found" on Daddy's dresser are going to Jesus' on Sunday!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Belated...Know & Tell Friday...

1. Do you play any musical instruments? If so, which one(s)? If not, is there one you always wanted to know how to play?
I play the piano. Played percussion in high school and college. Played trumpet for a bit...and can still do a weak and pitiful scale. I played the guitar for a bit and would really like to pick that up again and become proficient. I have also played dulcimers, vibraharps, and other Appalachian instruments. I was a music major for a few years...I've tried everything. Never could get a reed instrument to make anything but an awful honking noise though.

2. Do you sing well? Do you sing along in the car? Do you use head motions?
Well, I went to college on a full vocal scholarship. I love to sing...but my MomE life doesn't leave much room for singing these days, outside of occasional special music, car singing, and kiddie sing a longs. Head motions? I'm currently working on some sign language for a piece... does that count?

3. Who was your teen music crush?
I don't think I had one. New Kids on the Block and the Newsboys were popular but my family really never supported that kind of "crush" stuff. I wasn't in to it either.

4. What is your favorite type of music?
I enjoy everything. I'm truly eclectic in musical taste. I listen to a lot of classical, opera, swing, jazz, oldies, and veggie tales music. The only kind I struggle with is what I refer to as "trashcan" music...where it sounds like banging trashcans and I can't understand a word of what they're saying...well, except for the bad words. Sort of sets my teeth on edge. I'm also currently struggling with certain christian music genres where you can't tell if they're singing about God or a woman. Errr, use the BIBLE for lyrics when all else fails, dude!

5. Who are your three favorite musical artists?
Andrea Bocelli, Michael Buble, and Kathleen Battle

6. Does your church play traditional or praise songs, or a combination?

7. What is your favorite hymn?
Great is Thy Faithfulness

8. What is your favorite praise song?
The Potter's Hand

9. What is the strangest musician's name whose music you like?
Michael Buble's is sort of odd, I guess. I like Switchfoot...and that's sort of odd too.

10. Here's the bonus question that you get to answer with a question. What one question would you like for Heather and Reese to ask in a future KATF? Just DON'T answer it yet. It can be something random, something you'd just love to know about everyone else...just whatever floats your boat. Go for it!
Do you garden...grow things...inside...outside? OR Do you kill living green things?

To check out Know & Tell Friday...or join in the here.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Book Review 7

Fair Weather by Richard Peck

Okay, it is official. Richard Peck is the best juvenile literature writer I have ever read. Everything...everything...I've read by him just totally rocks! This book is no exception. If you've never read one of his books...sit're in for a treat. My all time favorites are his award winners..."A Long Way From Chicago" and "A Year Down Yonder." I just get lost in these books...I MUST finish them in one day.

To check out my Fall Reading List just click here.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Know & Tell Friday...

1. Do you have fake plants in your house? Do you like them?

I am not a big fan of fake plants...although, I do have one. We got her when we got the china cabinet and needed something for the top of it. None of my real plants could hack that kind of sunlight deprivation so we got a nice silk ivy thing in a cast iron potter. Writing this, I am reminded that I really should climb up there and dust the poor thing.

I love real plants. I'm currently sprawling rhododendrons all over my house. My kids have never bothered them, PTL and I can't seem to kill them...even when I try. I just cut off a hunk from the ends and plunk it in water and "hydroponically" grow roots in my kitchen window. Makes me feel healthy...which is saying something since I have bronchitis right now! HA! The mother plant was a gift from one of my third graders my first year teaching. Sniff, I'm getting all sentimental!

2. What is the oldest piece of furniture you have that is not an antique? Describe it.

I'm not sure if our piano or china cabinet is older but they are old and not necessarily antiques. My mother tells me that it isn't nice to consider furniture from her birth time antique! HA! The china cabinet was an important furniture purchase for us. We knew we'd be having kids but realized our china was in perilous danger stored on a rickety metal baker's rack. We'd have friends over with their kiddos and the thing would shake and sway....yikes!

3. Do you have any antiques?

I am slowly inheriting certain things. I've received beautiful dishes from one grandmother and great grandmother and beautiful chairs from the other grandmother. I have started "junking" with my mom and sometimes we come out with antiques too. I like antique kitchen stuffs. Recently, I purchased an antique flour mom has my grandmother's and I bought one identical to it. I also get good deals on antiques at garage sales. I got an antique school desk for $5 and an antique book holder stand for $10. Sometimes, people just want them to go to a good home. One couple practically forced an antique chair on me. It's still in the garage waiting to be redone. I went to my first estate sale this year. That was sort of see someones' life all laid out on the lawn...but antiquing is definitely something I think I'll do more of in the future.

4. What type of dishes do you use? China, stoneware, Corelle, Tupperware, paper plates?

Our everyday dishes are a mish mash of what we had in college...and yes, we've been married for five years and we're still using them. We do have nice cobalt blue and cream formal china (a wedding gift) but rarely use it. We have young children...enough said. I break out the cups and saucers when I have girlfriends over for playdates...just cuz I like to look at them. I LOVE cobalt blue!

5. What is your favorite thing in your house?

I've been sitting here trying to think of one thing...and I'm stumped. I'm not a real thing person...I have places in my house that I like...but a certain thing...hmmm. I guess, my bookshelves. We are booklovers and have packed full bookshelves...kid book bins and baskets...reading nooks all around. It is very comforting and calming to me.

6. Do you like to use lamps or overhead lighting?

We only have overhead lighting in the kitchen. Our house is one of those ones built 40 years ago when they didn't build houses with overhead lighting. Sometimes it's when you have to find a lamp switch in the dark while holding an infant...but most of the time I like the softer light. They're great for bookworms.

7. Are you a pristine white wall person or do you love color?

I was always a beige wall type..which I guess means white wall but have attempted to break out of my shell. I painted our entry way bright yellow...color titled "Number Two Pencil"...and I love it! To see my two year old daughter's here. My husband, who helped me greatly with the painting, admits that he was skeptical but now really likes the warmth it brings to the house. I've since painted a bathroom dark brown and plan to do something crazy upstairs soon...I'll keep ya posted.

To check out Know & Tell Friday...or join in the here.