Monday, September 29, 2008

Deja Vu?

What do you call it when you aren't experiencing something for a second time but feel like you are re-living the past in reverse? Sort of like messed up deja vu.

Lately, Emma makes me feel like I'm dealing with myself at three! Yikes...I told my Dad today that it's amazing I survived! Today, she very independently went potty and washed her hands.


...but...her sleeves got wet and she hates that...and started to tug and pull them away from her, yes Mom...this should sound familiar.

My mother has reminisced about threatening me with my life if I stretched my sleeves out, again! Emma heard the same schpeal today and I had a real moment of pause. My little face looked up at me with a determined, "I'm gonna tug this til it stops bothering me." AGH! Her little hearts shirt will never be the same. Sigh!

Then, Caleb my "tight space" boy. Squeezed himself into half the cooking island. Very cute...and no he's not mad cuz he's stuck...he's mad cuz his sister closed him in and he didn't get to do it himself. He proceeded to get out and go shut her into her side! Sibling rivalry at 1 and 3...yes, it is a very real phenomenon!

So, if it isn't deja vu... what is it that I'm experiencing? And don't say my fair comeuppance.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Book Reviews 5 & 6

Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Peterson
I loved this book. I feel a little embarrassed admitting that I'd never read it before. I knew I didn't want to watch the movie until I'd read it and now, well I may never watch the movie. With books that I truly like, I don't watch the movies cuz it just ruins it all! Case in point, Prince Caspian.
I would really like to see a youth group use this book for more in depth discussions about eternity. There are some great opportunities to discuss what it means to believe (or not believe) in God's Word, what happens when you die, etc.
Altogether, really neat book. I love the many different relationships going on...friendships, father/son, sibling, etc.

13. Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Taylor
I gritted my teeth through this book. It was sad...that's the nicest thing I can come up with to say about it. My heart still aches for this sad family...left with an abusive mother by an absent father, every family meal ending horribly, poor kids creating a restaurant so they can "create family dinners" because they'd never had good ones. The whole story culminates with a dinner after the mother's funeral and it leaves you, right where it began, slightly depressed and yearning for better things for this fractured family. No hope! In the future when I think a book is a dud I'm not finishing it. This was a waste of time for me.

To check out my Fall Reading List just click here.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Know & Tell Friday...

Kayren over at Everything's Coming Up Daisies has a neat Mimi for Fridays that I thought I'd try. So, here it goes...animal edition.

1. What dog do you most resemble?
A Jack Russell Terrier. We had one named Molly...for about a month...when I was pregnant with Emma. I was 8 months pregnant. I loved Molly, really...but WOW! She was so much like me...stubborn, competitive, peppy, high energy, determined to have Darren's affections (or said affections of the Alpha Male). It's funny to me now that my daughter Emma now is very similar but I can't give her to a good family in the country! HA!

2. What is your favorite zoo animal?
I have a real love for the elephant. I'm not really sure why...I just think they are a huge, gray, wrinkled kind of way! I love the baby elephant at the Indy Zoo right now. She's precious!

3. What zoo animal reminds you most of yourself?
Hmmm, well definitely not the giraffe...'cuz I'm short. Trying to think of something loud and hyper! HA...maybe the meerkats!? Tiny little hyper bodies frantically digging in their plexi glass homes! Chirp, chirp!

4. Do you have any pets? If so, how many, what kind, and what are their names? If not, would you like one?
Due to the allergies of my husband and son, we have no pets. I grew up with dogs...and would love to have one. I know, I know...we could have a hypoallergenic dog but well...most of them really shouldn't qualify as dogs. I'd like to try a labradoodle but they cost lots of money and we live in the city and have no where for it to run. I love my grandparents Puli...but again...lots of money. Although, they got him from a Katrina Animal Rescue Facility, so ya never know.

5. Have you ever ridden a horse?
Yes. I took riding lessons when I was 14 or 15. Boy, thinking back it really makes me appreciate the sacrifice my parents made...both money and time. So, if your reading this...thanks Mom and Dad! I learned to ride on a pony named Romeo...a grulla. That's a distinct breed that's tan with a strip down the back. I graduated to Red a second chance Kentucky Derby horse. Very cool...learned to jump on him. When we moved to OH when I was 18, we had church friends who let me come over and ride in the old empty mines. It was fun! Boy, I really miss that!

6. Have you ever milked a cow?
Yes. Well, with a milker. My Mom's girlfriend Karen and her hubby Gil have a dairy farm in PA and let me hang around one summer. I had a great time working at anything they'd give me to do. It was great. I mucked stalls, hooked up milkers, fed cats, stacked hay, fed was great! Good times!

7. Why don't sheep shrink when it rains?
They don't? HA! My guess is that they do something to the wool when they make it into garments. It probably lacks oils that the sheep carry in their skin. Which makes me wonder...what if you EVOOed your sweaters? Then maybe they wouldn't shrink! HA!

This was really fun! Now, if I can figure out how to get her button in my sidebar...I'll hook ya'll up!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Book Reviews 3 & 4

If it freaks anyone out that I have four books done...I read nonfiction super fast. Also, these two books overlap ALOT!

Making Your Kids Mind without Losing Yours by Dr. Kevin Leman-is the BIG book. It has everything in it.

Have A New Kid By Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman -is the condensed version. I really liked it and found it much more practical in application, etc.

Some of his ideas I've had immediate success with already! Say it once, turn your back, walk away! WOW! Some, I'm not so sure about. He says that if your child has a tantrum in the store to step over them and walk away. In this day and age that makes me nervous. It makes me nervous that someone will have their child abducted trying this out in the busy mall. I get the concept...but I'd be careful. For the record, I did do that in the library today and it DID work like a charm. She forgot about her tantrum (regarding leaving) and hopped up to chase after my retreating back. Then she was easily distracted to "tromp-tromp" over the little wooden bridge by the door. So, it works but it is no holds barred! Which, is how it should be.

My favorite sections (in both books) talks about the difference between authoritarian, authoritative and permissive parenting. It was so interesting and really put it at the parent's feet. WOW--I have a lot of work to do...on myself!

To check out my Fall Reading List just click here.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

No rest with the cuteness...

Caleb usually gets up from his nap a bit before his sister. He was having such a good time playing while I finished reading Bridge to Terebithia. He wanted to sit in the chair beside me and pretend to drink out of this blue cup. It was so cute...I grabbed my camera to share with ya'll. Check out the wonderful piggies and two toofers!

Later, Mommy was very tired. She thought she'd rest but turns out there is no rest with the cuteness around! I always end up being "wollered"--help, help!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Book Reviews 1 & 2

Dealing with Dragons
by Patricia C. Wrede

I so enjoyed this light-hearted read. It is delicious juvenile literature. It gently picks fun at all your favorite fairy tales of old and yet hold on to their adorable charm! I so recommend grabbing this book and getting to know Princess Cimorene as soon as you can!

A Mother and Two Daughters
by Gail Godwin

I hammered my way through this book because it's on my list and I'm going to read them all! I was disappointed but I guess it was an okay story. I read a review about this book in a book about creating mother daughter book clubs and let's just say the review was better than the book. I finished it and just couldn't figure out the purpose of the book. It didn't evoke any feelings good, bad or otherwise. If you have read this and found it profound...please share your reasoning with me...I'd be interested.

To check out my Fall Reading List just click here.

Fall Into Reading 2008

Juvenile Literature
(I say I read these to recommend to my Mom for her Jr. High classes but...the truth be told I really love the genre)

1. Dealing with Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
2. The Gammage Cup by Carol Kendall
3. The Blue Fairy by Andrew Lang
4. Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Peterson
5. What the dickens by Gregory Maguire --can't read this book. Declaring it a dud.
5. Fair Weather by Richard Peck

(Hopefully, this will give me some accountability to actually finish non fiction stuffs.)

6. The Busy Mom's Guide to Spiritual Survival by Kelli B. Trujillo
7. The Parent You Want To Be by Les and Leslie Parrott
8. The House That Cleans Itself by Mindy Starns Clark
9. Have A New Kid By Friday by Dr. Kevin Leman
10. Making Your Kids Mind without Losing Yours by Dr. Kevin Leman

(Some of these I've been hearing curiousity got the cat...and some I've had in a pile...waiting...)

11. Twilight by Stephanie Meyer
12. A Mother and 2 Daughters by Gail Godwin
13. Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant by Anne Taylor
14. Needle's Eye by Margaret Drabble
15. The Prophet by Frank E. Peretti read half...will save for next Fall

All books are subject to change and this list may grow. I plan to do a book review of each. Don't worry, I'd never give away the ending. I'll tell you just enough to get you hooked.

I will edit this post...since it'll be the permalinked one...and hyperlink the book reviews from this post to their blogs. I will mark the completed books in this lovely FALL shade so you can keep up with my progress!

FROZEN BLUE SHADE = These books have been frozen for the winter! Sorry, I either couldn't get them from the library in a timely manner or I got sidetracked with another author!

STILL ALIVE AND KICKING = This book my hubby and I are reading together. Thus, it is taking longer. It is great to read together though...I highly recommend it for a shared reading book!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Sweet Lovebird has landed...

Just an FYI to all those who've been keeping me in their prayers! My sweet lovebird called to tell me he's landed in the good 'ole US of A and will be home in my arms in a few hours. He spoke to his sweet babes...and got them all upset. Children under the age of three really don't understand, "Daddy will be home soon." I can't wait to see that reunion! I'll try to remember to take some pictures and video. Love to all...I will now begin my vigil...yes, I'm waiting up! I get the first hug!!!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Thankful Thursday...

I'm so tired...I'm just thankful it is Thursday. I'm sort of amazed that I've already made it this far into the week without my Darreny! I really miss him. He called and it sounds like despite the business stuff he is having a good time in China. He said he bought some neat stuff for the kiddos...and I hope it doesn't make lots of noise or break easily! Good night...tomorrow I'll be thankful it's Friday!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I thought I'd share...I could not figure out what a Meme was? The more "into" the blogging world I got and the more I blurfed about (blog surfing) the more I saw this word...Meme. Was it a word? Was it an acronym? So and so would say, check out this Meme from someone else...etc. There are entire blog sites devoted to these things. So, I asked my blogging guru friend and we had to laugh...cuz she'd just googled it herself. HA! So, since I've had people asking me who are new to the blogging scene as well...

In science, a Meme (pronounced to rhyme with “theme”) is a self-propagating unit of thought that is spread from one host to another. Richard Dawkins invented the term as a kind of idea-gene. Like genes, as Memes spread they mutate or die. Only the fittest Memes survive.

For bloggers Memes have become synonymous with Internet quizzes, surveys, and novelties that people link to and pass around on their blogs, forums and via email, things like the “which superhero are you most like” test…

As Beckie asked, "Clear as mud now?" LOL

Monday, September 15, 2008

Monday Memories...

These are pictures from exactly a year ago. AWWW!

He's still a serious and adorable man!
She's still into phones, shoes and purses! My girly girl!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Thankful Thursday...

I'm thankful...

1. That my children still take naps. Sometimes, Mommy really needs them!

2. That the weather is changing and the nasty allergy plants are dying! HA HA HA!

3. That my husband loves and challenges me. What a great man. How blessed am I.

4. That we've gone a month without any peanut reactions for my baby boy!

5. That someone thought of Thankful Thursdays to keep us all accountable...

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving,and his courts with praise!
Give thanks to him; bless his name”
~ Psalm 100:4 (NIV)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Recycled Crafts...

I enjoy reading my Family Fun Magazine. This month, I came across this cute recycled craft and thought I'd take a go at it!

Here's my version...
Led to "cute as a button" magnets...
Which led to "cute as a button" facelift for memo board...
All equaling a cute info. corner for above Emma's little desk. We can put our memory verses on the memo board, schedule on the cookie sheet...and practice our shapes and colors. She's getting good...only has a little confusion with green, black and white. She likes triangles and wants all shapes to be triangles. Bummer...but sometimes life isn't all triangles!

Monday, September 8, 2008

Playdoh Pretties?

I wanted to start sharing my large batches of playdoh with my friends thinking of how best to share I came up with this idea. I save all containers---it's sort of a teacher curse, I think. Anyhew, I like how these Cascade containers open but they don't provide a great seal. Since I always recommend keeping playdoh in Ziplock anyway...this worked. AND...I could include the recipe on the container. A little bit of scrapebook paper and wahlah!

I keep large amounts of varying colors in an ice cream jug. So, while I was at it, I prettied it too!

Marriage Monday...

I decided to join the bandwagon/permalink from Chrysalis' site once again. I even linked myself all up this time. (Thanks Beckie for the assistance attaching the buttons to my page!)

Chrysalis says- "Essentially, tell us what you've discovered about the importance of romance and intimacy to your marriage."

I've realized that I never fully understood the importance of romance and intimacy in marriage before our children were born. Sure, I liked the romance and intimacy--and sure we probably had more time for it all but NOW I see the importance of "toning down the tension, and tuning up the tenderness." It builds us up and makes us stronger!

We've really committed, after the birth of our second child, to go on a monthly date. I know, I have friends who go weekly--and I'm awed and amazed-- but monthly works best for us. We're both home bodies, bookworms, and self proclaimed time alone in the evenings after the kids are in bed is also wonderful to us. I created a little seating area in our master bedroom and it has become our quiet spot...away from the TV and noise of the ever running dishwasher!

I reached a point where planning everything about the dates was grating on me so I volunteered to set the date and babysitter if he'd plan the date. WOW--was he ever up to the challenge. I now call him my date night guru! Cheap dates or's just good to get out. We focus on each other..and for a tiny bit forget all the responsibilties on our shoulders. We love each other--"Oh yeah, I remember you!"

We've found that regular open conversations about the "tensions" in our lives helps them to not grow to unreasonable levels. Also, tuning into each other and planning to be tender helps us respond better to "stressful" news!

It freaks me out to be considered a "marriage counselor" in any way...but if someone can benefit from the things we do...I'm grateful!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Diaper Cake Recipe

I made a diaper cake for my friend's baby shower tomorrow. This is the second diaper cake I've made. I received one for each sweet baby of my own--and think they are soooo cute! The surprising thing is that they are soooo easy! No joke, really!

I'll even share the recipe....

Diaper Cake Recipe

67 diapers--I use Luvs size 4 because Luvs are almost white and kids are in 4s the longest.
Three spools of ribbon.--I chose pink and purple grosgrain, and a thin pink polka dotted.
1 Package baby wash clothes--I chose a mixed girl pack.
1 pack Ouchless hair ties.--cuz they're light pastel.
3 rubber bands--one normal, one medium and one LARGE.
Cake Topper--I chose cute pink shoes. I've done bows and that requires skills!
Cardboard Circle--Mine is ~18 inches and is covered with alum. foil.
Scotch Tape--I only used it for securing under the ribbons.

Roll Diapers--top inward--so they end up square. Yes, it takes a while to roll 67 but you'll make it!
Put a hair band around halfway to secure each roll.

Group Tiers

Top Tier--1 in center, seven around--total 8 (Normal Rubber band)

Middle Tier--1 in center, six around.... (Medium Rubber band) add twelve---total 19

Bottom Tier--1 in center, six around... (LARGE Rubber band) add 13....add 20---total 40

Total Diaper count...67.

Assemble tiers--set them on top of each other and smooth washclothes around for added color. Tuck them under the rubberbands--cuz it'll all be hidden by the ribbon anyway.



Use wider ribbon and scotch tape to wrap cake and cover rubber bands. I went around with two different colors just to make sure you couldn't see them.

Make bows. As you can tell, mine are sort of quaint but cute!

Use hair things or baby clothespins, etc. to secure ribbon to rubber bands...if you're interested in extra security and cuteness.

For boys...wrap the ribbon vertically then you don't have to worry about bows or security as much.

Be free and fun with this. I planned on doing another bow for the top but saw these shoes and fell in love with the idea. It turned out cute.

Viola--a cake!

Darren made a little cardboard circle for Emma--and Caleb enjoys snatching it from her and running! Very funny! I asked her why she was yelling and she said, "He, him--he took my Seekle" I couldn't figure it out. She said, "Ya know, like a triangle!" Ohhhhh!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Politics, politics...

I can't stand this time of year. Don't get me wrong...I'm proud to be an American--and I always vote (prego or carting kids along, rain or shine, etc.) It's times like this I wish we paid money for TV 'cuz I'd be watching Fox and not the liberal media that comes in on my bunny ears! Ugh--they are horrible! Unbiased, my foot! They don't even follow their candidates lead on this whole Bristol Palin issue. Leave it! As I try to change my language--and how I think about wording my feelings on all issues--I guess I'll say, "THEY ARE ACTING LIKE BIG MEANIES!" See, I didn't attack them just their behavior!

I'll be voting McCain/Palin--for many reasons. Probably top on the list is I'm incredibly, completely, totally PRO LIFE! Both have shown real fortitude on this issue. McCain has adopted children and Palin has a Down Syndrome baby and a supported pregnant teen. I hope she blows everyone's socks off tonight with her speech!

However, all of my opinions aside...I would be remiss to not mention that none of this politics stuff means a "hill of beans" in the grand scheme of things. God is in control. Jesus Christ is the only answer to our country's problems--our eternal salvation. Set your site on any politician and you'll be disappointed one way or the other. I think we should be involved but there isn't any point in getting all hot and bothered about what we can't control. Don't worry, I'm really talking to myself. I need to be reminded that I'm not in control of these elections, this country, or anything else. God is in control! I need to be faithful to Christ, above all!

I listen to my Dad's sermons online and I thought I'd quote him.

"Man, we get really excited about politics. These politicians...I don't care who they are, what party they're in...They are not going to get it done folks! They are just human beings. And the system is corrupt and there are all sorts of things that are going to happen BUT Jesus Christ provides everlasting life. And even if we achieved a perfect society, people would still die and go to hell. But not if they believed in Jesus Christ and were saved."

I was challenged to question myself about how I present Christ in my life to others. I know I readily discuss politics but am I as excited about Jesus Christ? I know a Man who rose from the dead, who provides everlasting life! Am I as excited about Jesus Christ as McCain/Palin?