Sunday, January 30, 2011

Sunday Afternoons Are NOT Meant For Science Fair Projects!!!

U.G.H.  I am officially OVER science fair.  Who in the world do "they" think are doing the projects???  It sure isn't the kids!!!  And get this...the one my 5th grader is doing is harder than the one my 6th grader is doing!  Who would've thunk???  I know...I'm pretty sure that's not a word...but it fit here, so there you have it.

I missed church because of my little Jonah bug this morning.  Due to the fact that our their projects are due on Wednesday and the fact that Todd is working tonight, I'd already decided we were not going to church tonight.  So here we sit, watching the Pro Bowl.  Which, according to the negative comments coming from my own personal peanut section, is not all it's cracked up to be. 

I gotta say...I never thought I'd be watching this without my hubby.  But I am.  Because he has warped all of our children.  AND, I have heartburn.  I know...that was kind of a randomly placed sentence, but I do.  And it made me feel just a teensy bit better by typing it. 

"Can somebody throw all the quarterbacks off the team???"  Graham shouted at the t.v. 

See my point???  I would honestly prefer to watch Good Luck Charlie, or something else along those lines.  And yes, I like that show.  And Hannah Montana Forever (but apparently NOT).  And before you ask, yes, as a matter of fact, I did indeed cry at the last episode.  Especially when Hannah changed her mind and went to college with Lilly. 

I feel like I was blasphemous today because the boys did school work.  I know...I know.  That's probably a whole other post, but I can't help it.  Since when are my kids old enough to have to do homework over the weekends now?  Not really...they usually don't, but this weekend was the exception.  Especially since tomorrow night will be spent listening to a million kids giving 4H speeches.  (I might have forgotten to mention that Graham placed 2nd in his class and now has to compete at the county level tomorrow night.)  I'm proud of him.  And I'm praying that we make it out of the good 'ol Agricenter before midnight. 

Between that, the Spring-like weather that made me force all of my kids outside all day yesterday, and Tuesday night's lacrosse practice, this weekend was the only time we had to complete their projects.  I'm only responsible for one...Graham's.  Drew's project is being done at his friends' house.  Thank the Lord for sweet friends! 

If anyone is watching the Pro Bowl...in all the football commercials, what the heck is that transformer-looking guy supposed to be?  He looks extra weird tonight because he has on a hula skirt and is doing a hula dance.  Hmmm.  Just a thought. 

Well.  I'm going to go.  I can't think of anything else to say.  G'night. 

Spring? In the Middle of Winter?

Yesterday was a gift from God.  Friday and Saturday, actually.  Friday the weather got up in the mid fifties, but yesterday we reached a whopping 72 degrees in The Ville.  It was a little slice of Heaven here on earth.  The boys got to wear shorts, they stayed outside all day, all the neighborhood kids (well, most of them) were out playing...it was wonderful.

However, it seems as if today, Jonah is paying for it.  He started coughing in the middle of the night...that croup cough that sounds like a seal barking.  And when he came downstairs this morning, he was crying because it hurt really bad when he would cough.  :(  So...Jonah, Noah and I are staying home from church this morning. 

The good thing about this cough is that steroids take care of it.  And our doctor knows how prone my kids are to getting it, so he always makes sure we have an Rx for it.  We have one now at the pharmacy, in fact.  It's in Jonah's file, so all we have to do is call and get it filled when they open.

The other boys just left for church.  It looks like as if not much is on our agenda for the day.  Graham and Drew have science fair projects due Wednesday, so they'll be spending some time getting those all put together and typed up.  The rest of us...well, I don't know what we'll be doing.  I might spend some time in our tornado closet.  It looks as if one blew through it.  Then again...I might not do that.  I'm feeling kind of blah today.  I'm sure at some point, I'll put some "real" clothes on (instead of my nightshirt and robe), but for now this feels nice. 

What's on your agenda for today?  I wish I was going to church, but it can't be helped.  Of course you know when one twin stays home, the other twin stays home.  Graham and Drew aren't like that...just Jonah and Noah.  It's one of those cool twin things.  There are lots of those that still happen every day...and why next year I am going to want them in the same class at school.  :)  I'm tired of the issues we face because of them being separated.  For the most part they're okay, but it would be so much easier for them (and for ME!)  if they were in the same class. 

Anyway...that's a whole other blog.  For now I am thankful for the teachers they each have and the unique ways they teach my babies.  They love going to school every single day, they love to read, they love math, they love these dreaded science fair projects they're doing...they have some awesome Godly women in their lives, and I am eternally grateful for them and the influence they have on my kiddos. 

We LOVE school...and I love that they are all going to start and finish their school years as Dragons.  Right now at the elementary school, they are the Little Dragons, but they love their older Dragons.  They love going down to the Dungeon that's behind their school and running around the track while watching them practice.  They love writing them messages and hanging them on the sides of our school, and they LOVE going to the games. 

One of the things I love most about my house is that on a Friday night (during football season) I can hear the band playing at the game.  I can hear the kids yelling and screaming.  I can see the Dragon paw prints all along Byhalia, then Powell, then Peterson Lake leading the way to the Dungeon.  It's awesome.  I love living here...and I love my kids going to the schools they go to.  :)

Did you hear my contented sigh?  You should have.

Well, I am going to get off this 'ol computer and love on my kiddos.  Enjoy your families today.  Love to all!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wednesday Again

I must say that I was disappointed when we didn't receive a phone call informing us that school was out.  I'm shocked, if you want to know the truth.  It snowed.  And my front steps and back porch are slick.  Just ask Andy.  I'm hearing the roads are slick in some areas, and dry in others.  And yes, I am a nervous wreck about driving my kids to school this morning.  I always end up praying the whole way there and back, and by the time I get home, I'm all shaky. 

I know.  Pitiful, right?  Snow I can handle.  Ice I can handle, thanks to my hubby who has taught me how to maneuver around over the years, but I prefer NOT to.  I'm good with staying home and letting my hubby do all the driving.  But apparently that's not on the agenda today.

Remember my post about finding a theme word for the year?  (Another Klove challenge)  I think I might have it narrowed down to a handful.  I'm still praying about them, so I'm not completely sure yet.  But I only have a few more days to do this, because the 31st is fast approaching.  Why is this so important to me, you wonder?  Well, it's like this.  I believe that whatever word I choose will be a word that I pray over my life every single day.  (An example of a word is Lisa's from the Klove morning show.  Her word is "clear", so she might pray, "Lord, help me to be completely transparent before you.  Help others to see through me, straight to my heart.  And let them see YOU in me."  When she found her word, she looked up the meaning online.  Her word had lots of cool meanings.)  But that's how you do it.  I can't wait to tell you mine!!  I'm going to wait until I'm completely sure about it.  But know that I am praying about it.

Well, that about wraps up the thoughts rattling around in my brain.  Plus, I need to start laundry and breakfast.  Have I mentioned that I do not love making breakfast?  I feel like I always make the same old, same old.  Add to that the fact that my kids don't like to eat early in the morning, and you've got my dilemma. 

Well...love to all.  Hope your day is blessed! 

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

My Prayer For My Boys

Lord,

I ask that You give complete knowledge to Graham, Drew, Jonah and Noah.  I ask that aside from this knowledge, you also give them spiritual wisdom and understanding.  Then the way they live will always honor and please You, and their lives will always produce every good kind of fruit.  Help Graham, Drew, Jonah and Noah to grow as they learn to know You better and better.

I pray that Graham, Drew, Jonah and Noah be strengthened with all Your glorious power so they will have all the endurance and patience they need.  May they each always be filled with joy, always thanking You, the Father.  You have enabled them to share in the inheritance that belongs to Your people who live in the light. 

I pray that Your roots grow down into Graham, Drew, Jonah and Noah, and I pray that their lives will be built on You.  I pray that their faith will grow strong in the truth they were taught, and that they will overflow with thankfulness. 

Clothe them with tenderheartedness, mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.  Help them to make allowance for others faults and to forgive freely.  Clothe them with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.  And let the peace that comes from You rule in their hearts. 

Help Graham, Drew, Jonah and Noah to live wisely among unbelievers, and help them to make the most of every opportunity.  Let their conversations always be gracious and attractive to You. 

I ask this in Your precious, holy Name, the Name above all others. 

Amen

(Taken from Colossians 1:9-12, 3:12-14 and 4:5-6 in my own words)

Monday, January 24, 2011

Make A Difference Monday

Yup.  It's a Klove thing again.  Who says weekdays have to be boring anymore?

If ever I wanted to make a difference in the lives of someone...what I do now is guaranteed to do just that.  My sweet friend has graciously opened her home to moms in our community to start a Moms In Touch group.  If you're not familiar with this organization, you can go here to read more about it. 

We meet every Monday (unless school is out, then we might change to a Tuesday) from 9-10ish.  I say "ish", because after we pray, we write cards to the teachers we've uplifted.

If you are reading this locally (as a fellow resident of the Ville) and would like to join us to pray, please consider doing so.  If the thought of praying out loud scares the bojiggles out of you, it is very structured and organized.  We pray Scripturally, so lots of times all we have to do is read aloud a Scripture with specific names in them.  Of course, we also pray for our kids and for each other.  Right now my prayer is that this group grows so big that we have to split.  How cool would that be??  Right now we pray for Tara Oaks Elementary, Collierville Elementary and Collierville Middle.  I also pray that we all grow closer together...it's a great way to bond with new friends, this act of praying with other women.  I almost feel like I've got my own Yada Yada group.  And if you haven't read those books, then forget I said that.  If you have read them...then we are lots like them!

The way we pray is this:

We praise God for WHO HE IS...Faithful, Steadfast, Loving, Kind, Gentle, All knowing, All powerful.  You get the picture.  We praise Him not for what He's done, but for Who He is .

We have a time of silent confession before Him.  This part is where I always think of Psalm 51:10, which says, "Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me."

After this silent confession, we give thanks.  Now, we thank Him for all He has done.  Answered prayers are what I usually thank Him for.  And after one week, we had some answered prayers!!

Finally, we have intercession.  This is when we pray for our own kids, each other, specific school needs, and for MITI.  Today we prayed for integrity...as in, "what is prayed inside these walls stays inside these walls."  And, "Lord, put a guard over my mouth."  I don't discuss what we pray for.

This is, by far, the most rewarding thing I have ever been a part of.  I cannot wait to see what all God does through this time of prayer.  Not only in our lives, but in the lives of those that we pray for.  I am eternally grateful for my friend Sharon, for starting this up.  A year ago, I had the thought of wanting to participate in something like this, and I am so excited to finally have a chance to be able to be in it.

We serve a mighty God.  The more time I spent with Him, the more I love Him.  If you're reading this from the Ville, and it sounds like something that you would like to do, please join us!  No pressure...no strings...just come and see what we're all about.

Love to all.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

More Recipes to Come...Maybe

This is not going to become a cooking blog, I assure you.  I might from time to time post recipes on here if I'm asked, but if you want to view a REAL cooking blog, click here for my friend Katie's yummy dinner ideas.  I must warn you, though, if you weren't hungry before, you will be after you read through all her yummy recipes.  I love to cook...I just get tired of the same old stuff I constantly make.  That's my only complaint about cooking...well, that and my 2 picky eaters.  Graham is much better nowadays because he finally realized that his taste buds had changed. 

But Jonah?  Heavens to Betsy, that child is going to drive me nuts.  I swear, he is going to turn into a giant peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  That's all he ever wants. 

I would love to talk about the mystery of having friends over.  It's a mystery for me because the more kids we have (if they're sweet kids, that is), the more peaceful of a day we have.  I know it makes no sense, but I promise...it's true.  We had 4 kids last night (we traded Drew for a kid named Eli), then 6 at one time today, and now we're at 5.  And we're having a nice, quiet, relaxing afternoon.  Todd's watching a game and I'm on here.  Life is good.

I have to take a few minutes and tell you about the power of prayer.  I know...abrupt subject change, but bear with me.  My friend Sharon opened up her home to a group of moms that are wanting to commit to praying for our school, our kids and our teachers and staff.  It's awesome...it's called Moms In Touch.  And it's open to anyone that has kids in our local schools that want to come.  We pray for Collierville Middle, Collierville Elementary and Tara Oaks Elementary.  We meet for one hour every Monday, from 9-10. 

Anyway, we have had already had some answers to our prayers!  It's exciting to see God moving in the midst of us...and it's so cool to be able to pray with a group of women who come from different denominations.  I'm already excited about our next meeting.  If you're reading this and want to join us, I hope you do.  You don't have to pray aloud if you don't want to...it's all about what you're comfortable with.  I know our teachers and staff sure appreciate the prayers, and it's something I am so glad to be able to do. 

So...that's about it.  I don't really know what else to write about now...unless you want to pretend you're a fly on our wall and listen to some conversations around here.  But that's a whole 'nother blog post. 

Oh...and all my chicks are back under one roof.  I'm a happy momma.  Love to all.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Chicken Tortilla Soup

I'm sharing a recipe.  I was asked on facebook, but I'm just going to put it on here because it's easier.  It's moderately easy, and super yummy!!!



Chicken Tortilla Soup

3 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, chopped
3 tbsp butter
3 (14 oz) cans chicken broth
4 cups half and half
1 can condensed cream of chicken soup
1 cup fresh salsa
1 can creamed corn
1 rotisserie chicken or 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, diced
2 tsp ground cumin
1 packet dry fajita seasoning
3 tbsp chopped, fresh cilantro

To Serve:
16 oz tortilla chips
8 oz shredded Monterey Jack cheese

In a large pot over medium heat, saute the garlic and onion in the butter for 5 minutes.

Add flour and stir well, cooking for 1 minute more

Add the broth and half and half.  Bring to a boil and reduce heat to low.  Add the soup, salsa, corn, chicken, cumin, fajita seasoning and 2 tbsp of cilantro.  Stir and continue to heat for 15 minutes

Crumble tortilla chips into individual bowls, add shredded cheese to each bowl, and ladle in soup.  Top each bowl with more crumbled chips, and remaining cilantro and serve.  Also yummy with a dollop of sour cream.

Snow Day & Comfort Food

Doesn't that sound heavenly?  Today was perfect in almost every way.  Mother Nature blessed us again last night and around 8 or so, we got the call that schools were closed due to icy road conditions.  And, by the way, this time they were dead on.  The roads really were icy, and I am thankful that they took our kids' safety into consideration. 

Anyway, since we knew there was no school, all the kids stayed up late and we got caught up on American Idol.  Lurve!!!  Steven Tyler is awesome...and I never knew that he was such a nice guy.  I don't know if he's calmed down some in his older years or what, but I really like him.  So, we watched Wednesday and Thursday nights' episodes before we went to bed. 

This morning we had ginormous cinabon-style cinnamon rolls for breakfast and hit the road.  We promised to take the boys sledding again.  And we did.  And it was every bit as much fun this time as it was the last!  Except this time was better because I was bundled up more.  I had on two pairs of pants, two shirts, a coat, four pairs of socks and my hubby's rubber boots.  :)  The only thing that got cold this time was my face, and by the time we left, I couldn't talk.  Because my lips were numb.  I don't know that I've ever been able to say that before.  But they were, and I seriously couldn't talk.  It was the weirdest feeling.

We swapped kids with some friends that we saw, and came home to eat lunch.  And yes, for the 2nd time in 12 hours, we ate chicken tortilla soup.  Yummmmm!!!  Oh, and in case you're wondering, that's where the comfort food part of this title comes in.  It's also what we had for dinner last night.

The kids have been playing all afternoon, I had a nap, watched HGTV as long as I wanted and talked to one of my best friends for half an hour.  It was glorious.  The only thing that would make this day better would be if my sister could come over like she originally planned.  But we decided that we didn't want her taking a chance if the roads got icy again.  Todd's working tonight, and we were going to have a girly night at my house.  Maybe next time. 

Instead of my girly night, it's turning into a one female and six boy kind of night.  Because we have extras.  Ahhh, the joys of being a mom of boys.  Well...I guess if these kids want to eat, then I need to get off here and go figure out something for dinner.  And I do plan on still watching a chick flick tonight.  It won't be the same without my sis, but I'll take what I can get. 

Love to all!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Your Day is What You Make It

Mind over matter...pick a phrase you want to use, but the bottom line is...your day (life, job, marriage, insert your own hurdle here) is what you make it.  My pastor says this all the time, and it's one of my favorite quotes ever:

Your attitude is the most important thing you will choose all day. 

Pretty simple, huh?  Call me crazy, but I am not one to believe in karma and all that junk.  I do, however, believe that positive thinking makes a world of difference.  Who wants to be around someone who is a complainer and negative all the time??  I know I don't! 

Working around kids has taught me so much the past three years.  You can accomplish the EXACT same thing when you're nice, rather than being mean.  In fact, when you are nice to "special friends", as we like to call them, you develop a relationship with them that is based on trust. 

I have one kid in mind when I'm writing this...and it was a kid that really got to me all last year.  Every time I was around this child, he would immediately put up his guard, usually resulting in him acting in a way that would guarantee him some attention.  But this year, I approached him with a different mindset, and the relationship we have now is one that thrills my heart.  He trusts me...he knows I'm his friend first and foremost, but he also knows that if he gives me problems, I am forced to take action with his teacher or an administrator. 

There's a relationship there...he knows I love hearing about what he does on weekends and such, but there's also a respect thing going on.  I still have days when I forget all this that I'm writing, and I let every little thing get to me.  Those are the days when I cling to God the most and ask Him for a song to put in my heart so I can focus on the worship chorus, instead of all the crazy going on around me. 

Because, my job is loud.  Have I ever said that before?  And some days it's so...well, I don't know what you would call it, but trust me when I say there are good days and bad days.

Most days are really good, though.  I try to put mind over matter and just push through the day, when it's a rough one.  And, every day is a brand new day.  If God's mercies are new every morning, then so are mine. 

Gotta run...the kiddos need to be woken up.  Love to all and hope your day is blessed!!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wow God Wednesday

Klove...it's in my first sentence again.  And no, I am not being told or paid to mention them.  It's just that I love this ministry so!!!  And the morning show is my favorite ever, with Lisa and Eric.  Lurve!!!  Anyway, instead of calling Wednesday 'hump day' or what have you, they've newly named it "WOW GOD WEDNESDAY"

Catchy, huh?

Anyway.  Do you have any Wow God stories you'd like to share on here?  Or on facebook, if you're reading from there?  I do, but I'm saving mine for a later date.  To be announced later...much later, probably.  Anyway...(oops, there it is again!  I love that word!)...

I do have a cool one from 16 years ago.  Actually it's not mine, it's Todd's.  After his graduation, he and his friend, Bob, drove to Colorado.  They were gone for about 2 weeks.  While they were gone, Todd was in a really bad mountain bike accident and skidded face first down a road.  Long story short, he had to have many stitches in his face, and an xray showed that he had a broken bone.  (I would love to tell you where that broken bone was, but for the life of me, I cannot remember.)  Upon seeing the xray, all the parentals (Bob's and Todd's) started praying and asked other people to pray with them.  When Todd went to the dr. again to possibly have a cast put on, in another shot of an xray, the broken bone was mysteriously not broken anymore.

Okay, I know I'm leaving details out, but this is the gist of the story.

Anyway, coincidence?  I think not.  How about "BUT GOD" instead?  Our God is greater, bigger, stronger and more powerful than anything I can imagine.  He is also Jehovah Rophi-the God who heals!!! 


I know that God does not heal everyone.  I don't know why...but if you want to read a great statement about this, you'll have to click here on my friend Rene's blog.  But He is capable of doing this.  We also have to do our part and believe and have the faith that His miracles require.  Our pastor has been teaching on this lately and it's been eye-opening for me. 

So...do you have a story to share?  Don't be shy...we need to share all we can so non-believers will see that our God is very much alive and dwelling within us. 

One more thing on a side note, really.  In my daily Bible reading (for anyone who wants to know, I'm reading The One Year Bible in the New Living Translation), I was reading about Joseph in Genesis.  He was the son of Jacob, his favorite son in fact, because Joseph was born while Jacob was older.  He had eleven brothers...some whole, some half.  His brothers made plans to kill him, but one of the brothers, Reuben, saved his life by coming up with an alternate plan.  Instead of killing him, they sold him to some Ishmaelite traders.  That's when Potiphar bought him.  Joseph was highly esteemed, and wherever he went and whatever he did, God was with him.  I just like that phrase.  God was with him. 

God is with you.  He's with me.  I hope this encourages someone who needs it today.

"But the Lord was with Joseph in the prison and showed him His faithful love.  And the Lord made Joseph a favorite with the prison warden."  Genesis 39:21

Whatever you're facing today or in the days to come...God is with you. 

Love to all. 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Thoughts...

On Klove, I was challenged to come up with a theme word for my life for the year 2011.  I've struggled with this...I've heard some great examples, and none of those seemed quite right for me.  I'm still praying over my theme word.  The point of this is to think of a word and pray it over your life each and everyday of this year. 

I've even thought of some words for my family.  For my husband, I thought the word 'leader' was good.  There's even a whole song about this on Klove-Lead Me by Sanctus Real.  I've been thinking of words for my kids, too.  And had some pretty good ones, but I can't remember them.  I wish I'd written them down.  Oh well, I'll keep thinking about them. 

I don't really believe in making new years' resolutions, but I do believe in doing things to better myself.  Especially spiritually...I crave more of my Jesus.  I want to be completely captivated by Him, and always mindful of the way I am acting.  I am aware that I have eyes that follow my every move...and I want to be an example. 

Well...these are just some thoughts this morning.  I have to run and wake up my kiddos.  Love to all!!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Our Weekend

This weekend has been heavenly.  H.E.A.V.E.N.L.Y., I tell you.  Friday night we had two extra friends over to spend the night and we ordered CiCi's takeout pizza.  It was yummy, and it never occurred to me we could do that until Phyllis and Wiley did it one night.  Anyway.  I woke up entirely too early on Saturday, because the friend that spent the night with Jonah and Noah had to leave at 8a.m. for a basketball game.  Yikes.  His mom was sweet and let Jonah and Noah go with her. 

The friends all stayed the majority of the day.  And my hubby was gracious enough to stay here with all of them while my mom, sister and I went out.  We had several places to go.  We started out at Yarniverse, my mom's favorite knit shop.  After that we went to Bogey's Deli, that was right next door.  Next on our stops was Muddy's Cupcake Shoppe.  I know, right??  They are yummy.  My mom and I are on a mission to find the best cupcake, but so far I like GiGi's the best.  Anyway, after the bakery, we went to Vera Bradley.  :)  I had some birthday and Christmas money that I was saving and they have their new Spring patterns out...and, well...you know how that goes.  We walked around Saddle Creek afterwards (it's still one of my favorite shopping centers), then we ended our day at Costco.  I had something to return. 

Todd ended up riding with the sheriff's department Saturday night, so we went to Mom's for dinner alone.  Sunday was spent at church, and for dinner last night a bunch of us went to CiCi's to eat after church.  Graham and Drew went home with a friend, so this morning it's just me and the 2 younger boys.  We're watching Franklin together.  :)  It's been forever since they've watched this, and it's bringing back memories. 

I don't know what's on the agenda for today.  I had one thought of doing something, but it's drizzling rain and it kind of messed up what I thought.  So...I know we'll meet up with my friend so I can get Graham and Drew back, but after that, I don't know.  Whatever it is, I know it'll be a fun day.  Just the fact that we're home from school today is good enough for me!!

Well, I need to get off this thing and start on some laundry that I neglected over the weekend.  I hope you all enjoy your kiddos today, I know I will!  Love to all!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Challenge...Are You Up For It?

Does anyone want to join me in Scripture memorization for 2011??  Our God has given us His word, alive and sharper than a double-edged sword, our instruction Book.  I, for one, would love to have a plethora of verses pop into my mind anytime I need them.  This is something that Beth Moore started doing on her blog 2 years ago, and I didn't participate then.  So, first off, that's where the idea came from.  In case you're ever interested, here's the link to her blog:

http://blog.lproof.org/

Anyway, it's very simple.  You pick two verses to memorize every month.  One on the first and one on the 15th.  You can pick your very own verses, or you can go along with what Beth memorizes.  (And, in case you didn't know, she is my all time favorite Bible teacher.)  I gave you the link to her blog so you can read which one she's going to do. 

This morning, I did 3 things to help me along with my first verse.  (I'm joining late!)  I wrote my first verse in a brand new spiral notebook, I made a note on my phone and I made my own travel sized Scripture journal to take on the go with me.  Because there is something very valuable in writing it out...at least for me.  With my Scripture journal, all I did was take colored note cards, punch a hole in the corner, write the verse out, then bind it with a ring.  I got all the supplies at a teacher learning store a long time ago, so I already had it all.  Do your own thing and make it unique to you, I just wanted to share what I did to help me along.

For my first verse, I went along with Beth.  It's taken from the NET Bible (and I still don't know what that is!!).  It's James 1:17.  "All generous giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or the slightest hint of change."

I would love to be accountable with you all!  I am praying that I am able to keep up with this.  I have been working up to this for a couple years and have done a few verses on my own, but maybe this time it will stick!!  Twenty-four verses in a year is awesome...and His word is alive and powerful.   

If you would like, we can also text each other and encourage one another along the way.  If you want and if you don't mind, email your number so we can do that.  You can reach me on my cell at 901-301-0067.  I can't wait to see what God is going to do through this!!  As Beth wrote a few days ago on her blog, God is raising up an army of women, over 8,000 strong, to go on this journey.  Let's see what He does through this! 

To Him be the glory!!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

My Week in Review

Whatever, right???  It's that stupid title thing.  Again.  My teacher friend comes up with snazzy ones, but me??? Well.  Just look at the title and there you go. 

What a week it's been!  I love some snow days!  Especially when it's actually snow, and not just ice.  My kids got the all important phone call Sunday night telling us that, yes indeed-y, school was out.  :)))  Don't you remember that feeling as a kid?!  Getting that little piece of info was magical.  I try to replicate that for my kids every time it happens.  I loved that feeling, and hope that my kids look back on these years and remember them with the same fondness I do.

And then we got a 2nd snow day.  On the first one, Todd was home with us.  We all slept late, had a yummy chocolate chip pancake breakfast with hot chocolate, and the kids played outside all morning.  After lunch we took them sledding.  It was so much fun!!  There's a huge hill that half of The Ville showed up to have fun in the snow, and we were among the many. 

On Tuesday we woke up late again :), had breakfast and went to lunch and a movie with Daddy.  We ate at Chik Fil A, and saw Yogi Bear in 3D.  It was a cute movie...and Jonah was still (and QUIET) the entire time.  That, my friends, is a huge deal.  The kid cannot sit through a movie to save his life.  But he did this one!  I didn't hear him say one thing, although at one point, he did look at me and give me a thumbs up. 

So, now it's back to the real world.  School, work...all the usual stuff.  Homework...you name it.  I treasure all the little moments I get in life with my kids.  It seems like I wish my life away sometimes.  I really try to remember not to do that, though.  It's easy to get all caught up in things that are not important.  Sometimes I will look at one of my kids and remind myself to just slow down and to enjoy them.  I know they're only young once, and I want them to have great memories of these years. 

Well...speaking of that, I am going to enjoy a movie with them now.  And enjoy being snuggly in my fleece pj's and robe.  Because the heater is not working downstairs and it is FUH-REEZING in here.  Last time I looked at the thermostat, the temp was a chilly 60 degrees up in here.  :)  Well...good night and love to all!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Today Is...

...the one year anniversary of the earth quake in Haiti.  One year ago today, over 200 thousand people lost their lives.  Over 800 thousand people suddenly became homeless. 

Here's a song that I love.  I thought I'd share it with you.  Love to all...and remember to keep these people in your prayers. 



Love to all.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Church Day

And I'm home alone.  :(  I'm sad about missing church, but I felt like it would just be best if I stayed home.  I've been trying my hardest to get sick ever since Friday, and I really don't want to get any worse.  Especially if it snows!!  I plan on being with all of them when we go sledding!

I finally finished my Sarah Palin book, Going Rogue.  On Friday night I picked up the newest Karen Kingsbury book, Unlocked, and I finished it this morning.  It was SO. GOOD.  It's about a boy with autism, and his daily struggles through life.  It makes you wonder...what are those kids thinking?  Do they feel normal inside, like the boy Holden did in Unlocked?  He thought he was carrying on conversations...but to the outsider, he was closed off with a wall up around him. 

It just makes you wonder, ya know?  And it sure makes me want to remember those kids...I see them every day in school, and while I'm always nice to them and smile at them, maybe I can do a little something extra.  Maybe take the time to get to know them.  I'm happy to say that Jonah and Noah each have a "special friend" in their class...they're in the process of being mainstreamed.  This thrills my heart, because it is teaching them the gift of compassion.  And patience.  And understanding. 

So while the fam is away, I decided to go upstairs to clean off my bookshelves.  Mostly so I could find another book to read, but also because I'm donating some books to my neighbor, who needs to raise money for softball.  I also organized them, and put them in order.  I know...boring stuff to the normal person, but I never claimed to be "normal". 

I'm trying to decide what to have for lunch before the kiddos get home.  Speaking of...they just called and are on the way!  I need to run...enjoy your day!  Love to all!

Friday, January 7, 2011

2011 Handbook

I loved this email my sister Lisa sent me so much that I decided to do a copy and paste on my blog.  Hope you all enjoy.  Love to all!!

HANDBOOK 2011

Health: 

1.       Drink plenty of water. 
2.       Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince and dinner like a beggar. 
3.       Eat more foods that grow on trees and plants and eat less food that is manufactured in plants.
4.       Live with the 3 E's -- Energy, Enthusiasm and Empathy 
5.       Make time to pray. 
6.       Play more games 
7.       Read more books than you did in 2010. 
8.       Sit in silence for at least 10 minutes each day 
9.       Sleep for 7 hours. 
10.     Take a 30 minute walk daily. And while you walk, smile! 

Personality
: 

11.    Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. 
12.    Eliminate negative thoughts and things you cannot control. Instead invest your energy in the positive and in the present moment. 
13.    Don't over do. Know your limits. 
14.    Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does. 
15.    Don't waste your precious energy on gossip. 
16.    Dream more while you are awake!
17.    Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
18.    Forget issues of the past. Don't remind your partner of his/her mistakes of the past. That will ruin your present happiness. 
19.    Life is too short to waste time hating anyone. Don't hate others. 
20.    Make peace with your past so it won't spoil the present. 
21.    No one is in charge of your happiness except you. 
22.    Realize that life is a school and you are here to learn. Problems are part of the curriculum; they appear and fade away but the lessons you learn last a lifetime. 
23.    Smile and laugh more. 
24.    You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.

Society
: 

25.    Call your family often. 
26.    Each day do something good for others. 
27.    Forgive everyone for everything. 
28.    For a learning experience spend some time with people over the age of 70 & under the age of  8. 
29.    Try to make at least three people smile each day. 
30.    What other people think of you is none of your business. 
31.    Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends will. Stay in touch. 

Life: 

32.    Do the right thing! 
33.    Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful, or joyful. 
34.    GOD heals everything. 
35.    However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
36.    No matter how you feel, get up, dress up, and show up. 
37.    The best is yet to come.
38.    When you awake alive in the morning, thank GOD for it. 
39.    BE HAPPY EACH DAY!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

If You Were A Fly On My Wall...

You might see lots of weird things.  Or hear them. 

Like tonight, for instance.  I'm sitting in the living room, watching a show on Disney I'd rather not talk about, listening to three of the brothers playing football on the Wii.  I love them.  And I love our life.

You might see me on a computer, looking at one of the many blogs I love to read.  Currently, my favorite blog is a tie: a second grade teacher, or a military widow's.  It's a close race.  Either way...they're entirely opposite from each other, but both very interesting.  If you want to check them out, you can scroll down on my blog and find them on the right...one is Tater Tales (the teacher's) and the other one is Wades World. 

You might witness the way that Andy gets nervous when the boys start playing rough.  I don't know if he hates it or if he loves it, but either way, he gets really riled up and more than once, his gaping open (HUGE) mouth might have grazed a head or two.  Then you would hear him starting to bark...and bark and bark and bark.  I love him, too.

Tonight you would have noticed that I was upstairs for almost an entire hour, cutting three out of four boys' hair.  I have become pretty good at it, too, if you don't mind my saying so.  I even used scissors part of the time...not just the clippers.  I have to stop here and say that I love me some clean cut little boys!  They love it too...especially Graham, who has entirely way too much hair for a boy!! 

You would see how I am not Wonder Woman, and tonight when I didn't feel good for dinner, I became a (very) short order cook.  Five people ate five different things.  But that was way faster than actually planning and cooking a meal.  That will come tomorrow, when I actually make a yummy (crock pot) meal.  :)  I'm already excited about it.

You would see my addiction for Veggie Straws.  I blame my mother-in-love completely for this one.  She is the one who got me hooked on them-I ate an entire bag of them (from Costco, mostly by myself) in three days.  I know...I'm ashamed.

You would see that sometimes we do our homework at night...but sometimes we do it in the morning, when our brains are a lot less fried.  Sometimes spelling words don't get called out until we're in the car line at school.  And sometimes I forget all together.  I guess it's a good thing that our teachers are good teachers, and they all do a great job at making sure the words are well known by Thursday. 

You would see that my husband is a really sweet guy...in case you didn't know it already.  He's the most selfless person I know.  He's constantly helping people...either with a car mechanical problem, or someone that's stranded on the side of the road.  He is always putting others ahead of himself...and honestly, we could all learn a lesson or two from him.  So many times I've been humbled by the way he reaches out to others.  You won't ever him give some fancy speech, you probably won't hear him even pray out loud (he hates being in the spotlight), but you will always see him loving people by helping them.

Well...this is all I have time for.  Speaking of the man...he just walked in.  Love to all. 

The Calm Before The Wake Up

I have a few minutes of silence before I have to start waking every one up for school, so I thought I would write.  Graham just walked out the door.  He had to be at school early this morning for an FCA meeting.  I'm thankful for a neighbor who offers to drive him along with his own daughter. 

It's been a pretty good week.  I'm glad today's Thursday, though.  We're back to weeks that fly by because of all we have going on.  I know it's going to seem like just a few minutes pass until our birthday season arrives.  I have yet to figure this out...how the time goes so quickly, but I do know that the older I get, the faster it goes.  I don't know how I feel about that, either.  Sometimes I still feel like I'm in my early or mid-20's, and then I remember...oh yeah.  I'm in my mid-30's now.  :(  Do you do that??

It's been kind of a roller coaster week.  Jonah had to miss school on Tuesday b/c of a fever he was running (for no apparent reason), and now Todd has the crud.  So much so that he scheduled himself an appointment with our friend who's an ear, nose and throat doctor.  You know the man is sick if he willingly goes to the doctor.  I'll be glad when he gets some medicine...I do not enjoy having sick people in my house.  God has blessed us all with great health, so this is not something we have to deal with that much.  I feel like I need to be walking around with a can of Lysol!

So...if you're my friend on facebook, you'll see that I've been reading Sarah Palin's Going Rogue.  I have about 10 pages left to finish it and I have loved every bit of it.  I just love her, period.  Politics aside (well, maybe not), I just like her as a person.  Her show on TLC has helped.  I bought her new book at Costco a couple days ago and can't wait to read it.  I think before I pick it up, I'm going to read a fiction one first.  It's one by my favorite author.  I also bought another book yesterday called Made to Crave by Lysa TerKeurst.  She's the founder of Proverbs 31 Ministries and she's been guest hosting on the KLove morning show the past 3 days.  The book sounds phenomenal...it's all about finding out what is in your life that distracts you from God (food, tv, computer, etc) and doing less of that and more of seeking God.  It, too, sounds great and I can't wait to pick it up.

Then there's Decision Points by George W. Bush, then...ahhhh, the list is never ending.  I love to read.  It's a hobby that keeps me sane, and why not fill my mind up with wholesome stuff?  Like KLove being the only radio station I listen to, the only fiction books I read are Christian fiction.  I don't usually do much non-fiction, but these that I'm reading or plan on reading are by Christian people.  I like the old saying, "Garbage in, garbage out."  We are products of what we watch/listen to/read.  I don't know about you, but I'd rather it be good, wholesome, God-pleasing stuff in.  I'm more likely to be a better person...a nicer person...and doing life this way, well it helps me through my days. 

Well, this post kind of took a random turn, but why not?  I have to run...I hear water running and kids stirring.  Hope your day is blessed beyond measure.  Love to all!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Klove

I absolutely love this radio station.  It's called encouraging Klove for a reason...it's there as a tool that God uses to reach us.  I believe this with my whole heart.  I love the message the dj's give, I love the holy written Word of God they read, I love the music and the way the songwriters allow God to speak through them. 

For example, I love this song.  It's called Everything I Need and it's by Kutless.  I'm going to post the video below.  I hope you take the time to watch it.  I just wrote the lyrics down in my journal and when I was writing them, one girl immediately popped into my mind.  I am going to send her this in a private message, and pray that she feels God speaking to her through it. 

Here's the song:



I listen to nothing but Klove.  Not that the other stuff is horribly bad, although most of it is nowadays, but I like the message on Klove.  Their New Year's challenge is try listening to nothing but Christian music for one solid month.  And see what God does in your life.  See how He speaks to you through the music they play.  See how rewarding it is to pray for others in time of need when a request is shared on air. 

It's one of God's gifts to me in this life.  Klove, I mean.  It's also a gift to my children.  I love nothing better than hearing them sing along the songs that are taken straight out of His word.  This is another way that the Scripture comes to life in us...through this music. 

Do you want to join me in this challenge??  What in the world do you have to lose?  Except being blessed by God.  Join me...I dare you. 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

We celebrated ringing in the new year last night with some amazing friends.  This is our third year to celebrate with them.  We feel blessed to be part of such a great group of people, and what better way to celebrate than with friends? 

These are friends that we go to church with.  There were 4 and a half couples there (one of the hubbies was sick) and a bajillion kids.  We ate, played cards, played the wii, sat around and talked...and ate some more.  It was a great night. 

Of course we and one other couple were the last to leave...at 2:00.  I was finally about to fall asleep, but everyone else was going strong.  I was also thinking ahead a little, because whatever bowl Alabama is playing in today starts at noon, and we're going to my mom's for lunch.  Which means that we will have to leave our house at 11 so Todd can see the kick off.  If it weren't New Years day, he would be enjoying this game from the comfort of our own living room.  But since whatever you do today is what you do for the rest of the year...he's joining us.  :)

We spent yesterday taking down the Christmas decorations.  My wonderful hubby jump started this by going outside and taking down the lights.  My awesome son, Drew, completely un-did the tree, then him and Todd took it all apart.  I was so thankful, because while they were doing that, I was switching back to my everyday dishes (instead of the Christmas ones) and cleaning as I went.  And re-arranging my hutch.  We got it all down and put away, though...well, except for one Santa I forgot to take off the wall, and our mailbox wreath.  :(  There's always one thing, ya know??

Well...speaking of leaving soon...I need to get ready to do just that.  I hope all of you enjoy your families today.  Love to all. 

Church of the Small Things, by Melanie Shankle

Several weeks ago, I was picked to be on the launch team for Melanie Shankle's newest book, Church of the Small Things.  I have been a r...