Thursday, January 31, 2008

Show & Tell Friday

When my grandpa passed away a few years ago, my dad brought home a little box full of slides. Going through them, I quickly realized that these slides with the red are pictures from when my dad was a little boy. Most of them seem to be from the mid-late 1940's. What little treasures! I took them up to Wal-Mart and had the images put onto a cd. I could not believe the quality of these pictures! They are incredible!

I found these picture of my grandparents in these slides. They look to have been taken close to the same time. I love them because they capture the essence of the kind of people they were. I used these pictures in these two layouts where I listed some things that reminded me of them. They are in my album of most favorite pictures.

Thanks for checking out my Show & Tell today.

For more, you can visit Kelli over at No Place Like Home.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Works For Me Wednesday

I have decided to do a series of posts about my scrapbooks. Most of you who know me, know I enjoy scrapbooking. If you were to come over, I'd love to show them to you. Since we can't get together, I thought I'd share them through my blog. I decided to start with Works For Me Wednesday hosted by Rocks In My Dryer.

For years I had stored the kid's school papers and artwork in large shoeboxes. Over time, the boxes began to wear out. In the meantime, I began scrapbooking and needed to get these papers more organized. One evening the kids and I sat and sorted through all their papers and put them in order by grades. I bought 4 of these plastic file boxes (one per kid) and folders and everything is filed by grade. It has forced me to keep only the most special things because I don't want to get beyond one box per kid.

To date, I have finished grade school albums for 2 of my kids, and a high school album. It was so nice to have all the memorabilia ready to go. I scanned most of the larger pieces and printed them for the albums. I have kept the originals for the kids to take with them to their homes someday.

Update to Prayer Requests

I just learned that the man I talked about in my previous post, Eric passed away today. It's sad but with hope. They were a Christian family. You can post a message for the family at their blog. I am truly saddened by their loss.

Prayer Requests

Of all the things we do here in bloggy land, I feel that there is nothing more important than holding up someone in prayer. If someone has taken the time to post a request, usually that need is urgent and on behalf of someone who matters very deeply to them.

I have tried to make a practice of stopping and praying whenever I come across a request. I would want people to do the same if it were my husband or child. Just this past week, I have come across two very similiar requests. One family I know very well, one I only know through reading their blog. Both of these men are in dire situations...the main problem? The doctors cannot figure out what is wrong with them.

Eric was in the hospital in Nov (I think) and on a resperator (you can read back through their blog for all the details). He came out of it and they were finally told his breathing problems were a textbook case of food allergies. He collapsed this past Friday and lies near death. (The latest news is found here.)They are not sure if he even has any brain activity. He has 6 children, 2 of whom they just adopted.

Brad is the brother of a very good friend of mine. He's just been moved to a cancer care center in Utah yet the doctors have assured them he does not have cancer but that's pretty much all they know.

I cannot imagine how consumed their families must be. If only there were some answers... yet although we cannot give them answers, we can give them hope that only comes through the support of prayer. We can uphold them and bring them before the Lord. I encourage you to please stop and lift up each of these men and their families.


Monday, January 28, 2008

A Few Links of Interest

I have been entering drawing after drawing at the Bloggy Carnival hosted by Rocks In My Dryer. Last fall there were over 500 drawings, which means over 500 prizes to be won!! I ended up winning a Beth Moore Bible Study. Check it out....maybe enter to win something It's alot of fun!!

My cousin Gretchen has been doing a series of posts about various members of our very large family. We are all scattered about the country and cousins vary in ages from toddlers to (well, I hear the oldest cousin just turned 50!) Congrats to my cousin, Janet!! Anyways, this post is about my cousin, Elise, who has turned out to be such a beautiful, sweet girl. God has just done some great things in her life. Her testimony is inspiring.

Hoping you're having a happy Monday!!

Update: Kelli over at No Place Like Home posted some absolutely delicious looking recipes as well as a few craft projects. The pictures are beautiful and I'm planning on trying some of these ideas!!

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Pen Pals

When I was in the 4th and 5th grades, I remember my teacher coming in with a box of cards. On these cards were names of children from all over the world. They were going to be our pen-pals. It was a way of teaching us how to format letters and address envelopes. I LOVED it. I can't remember the 4th grade pen-pal, but I do remember that my 5th grade pen-pal was from Helsinki, Sweden. We wrote back and forth for a few years. I thought it was the greatest thing to hear what life was like across the ocean. She sent me a picture or two and I loved seeing the envelopes with different postmarks and stamps.

We finally connected to high-speed internet this past September. Up until then, I had only heard negative things about blogs. I have since changed my mind. I have several blogs that I read daily. They are all written by women from all different walks of life. I have learned so much about my relationship with God, entertaining, house-keeping, shopping, reading, couponing, cooking, crafting, and finances (and this is just to name a few!) I am able to keep in touch with family and friends. I count my time reading blogs as valuable as I would if I were reading a book on any of the above mentioned subjects. Just this morning, I read a post about a family who is close to being debt free. She listed ways they have raised money and I asked her a question. I was so flattered to find out that she wrote an entire post to answer my question. That was so kind!

So, in this age of technology, where letters aren't written near as much as they ought to be, I feel I have found an entire network of new friends. Internet Pen-Pals if you wish.

Thanks so much to everyone who stops by here periodically. I had the most "hits" yesterday than I've ever had. Thanks to everyone who has left such nice comments. Feel free to leave them. I LOVE reading them and I WILL respond to you.

Have a very blessed Lord's Day.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Show & Tell Friday

While going through a box of love notes from my children (you know, Mother's Day cards, things written at school, etc), I decided that they were just too cute to keep in a box, only looked at once a year or so.

I chose a favorite note or story from each child. The only frame I had available at the time was actually large enough to accomodate all of the notes. I backed the backing board with fabric, attatched the notes and trimmed it all with ribbon. It now has a place of honor on my bedroom wall. I love looking at it from time to time, remembering (and missing) the days when my house was full of little kids. (Oh boy, I'm feeling somewhat emotional here!!)

This one is from Joshua. He must have been in 4th or 5th grade (he's 22 now!). He drew a picture of his dad and wrote a nice story about him and ended it with how much he loved his dad.

This little card is from Amy to me. I'm guessing she was in 3rd or 4th grade (she's almost 20). It's so cute because she always had trouble with spelling so we often laugh at the way she spelled some words (notice "Dera Mom") Anyways what makes it so adorable is she gave me a quarter!!!!! Yep, she taped it to the card!! How cute is that?

For more Show & Tell fun, visit Kelli over at No Place Like Home.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Family Verbiage

I'm sure that every family has a language or words or phrases that are uniquely their own. Our family is no exception. While I was laying in bed this morning, putting off getting up into the cold, I thought of words and definitions that you will not find in good old Websters. I, however, have decided to reveal these "undiscovered" definitions to you in this post!!

"Clue Cookies" - (n): These are those sugar-wafer cookies. Evidently my mom and her siblings used to eat them while playing the game, "Clue."

"Hosenfeffer" - (proper n): This was my mom's favorite name for my cousin, Stephen. Rumors also have been wildly spread that this is also a character in a long-lost comic book of Matthew & Stephen's. (The root of this word is German and years later, we found out it is the German word for rabbit...go figure!!)

"What In The Sam Hill" - OK, I know this is not a word but a phrase. This is how we would know my dad was aggrivated. He never got out-right mad but we would irritate him from time-to-time (can you imagine that 3 kids could irritate a person?) His favorite times to use this phrase was when he couldn't find something or when we had to tell him he had a phone call and he was in the bathroom.

"Nutty Fagan" - (n): This is a fudgey, peanut buttery confection eaten over ice-cream, invented by my Grandpa. I'm not sure if anyone knows the "official" recipe but I've been told it involves Hershey's cocoa and peanut butter (chunky). A quick version can be made by warming together Hershey's chocolate syrup & peanut butter but remember, it won't be authentic!!

"Mr. Bopeenie" - (proper n): OK, my mom just liked to make up names for people. I'm not sure who was originally called this but it ended up being a powder blue, male-figure puppet that was used in Sunday School. It's a good thing kids like crazy stuff because now that I think about it, that puppet was a little scarey!!

"Goulash" - (n): Our family's version of goulash involved elbow macaroni, hamburger and spaghetti sauce. It wasn't until years later when I watched Martha Stewart make authentic goulash that I realized it had nothing to do with Ragu!!

"Booney-Boney-Bah" - (proper n): A well-beloved antagonistic character in several home-made comic books from the 1970's. (He may have battled "Hosenfeffer!)

"Sheister" - (n): Derived from a German word, it basically refers to someone who is sneaky or could also refer to anyone who just generally iritates you!!

"Thrash" (n): Because of a "tick" German accent, my grandparents would refer to "trash" as "thrash." Believe it or not, there was a certain comfort in hearing them call trash, thrash! (As a side note, before Cliff was adopted, this was also his last name...I'm not saying a word!)

"Green Sloppy Joes" (n): This is a sort of "creamed" version of sloppy joes thickened with saltine crackers. We had this alot when we were kids. It's actually quite good. My kids love it. It's seasoned with mustard which gives it a rather greenish tint. Much to my mother's dismay, the name "green sloppy joes" has stuck.

Now I know that there are a few family members who lurk about here from time to time. If you have any words or definitions to add, please feel free to leave a comment. This will be an on-going project.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008


Have you ever seen something, heard a song, or smelled something cooking and it transported you right back to another time in your life? It happens to me occasionally when I hear certain songs from when Cliff and I were dating...songs like "Harbour Lights" or "Now Is the Hour." Yeah, he was in the Navy, he was shipping out, and those WWII songs just seemed to romaticize that otherwise sad time!!

Yesterday I borrowed a Video I had given my dad years ago. Three episodes of one of his favorite shows..."The Honeymooners!" I put it in and as soon as I heard the music and saw the graphics of the opening credits, I was transported back in time. Back to warm summer nights in Long Island, NY. I was a kid. The "Odd Couple" came on at 11:00 and the "Honeymooners" were on at 11:30. That was LATE for us!! We would never be allowed to stay up so late during the school year but this was summer. We didn't have air-conditioning so my mom would let us sleep in the living room on Friday nights. What a treat!! It was so special that I remember thinking that I had the absolutely best mom in the world!! We'd lay there warm, tired, and content watching the antics of Ralph and Alice Kramdon. How special!! It was nice to go back yesterday and remember these days. I can almost smell the summer heat!

To take this a step further, I've been mulling over these thoughts today and I realized that God uses this part of our human-ness. Think about Communion. It is a time of remembrance revolving around taste...and in today's church, music is often used too to help us remember His love, His grace, His most awesome gift of His Son. All throughout the old testament, God had people build altars to remember experiences and lessons learned so that they could go back, remember and never forget. What about Passover? I'm not a Bible scholar by any means but it just all clicked together for me today how important times of reflection and remembrance are. I am reminded and humbled once again how much my God has done for me.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Snow Tubing

In spite of the cold weather, we had so much fun!! The kids ran for two hours!! They have a nice set-up at this ski resort. The tubing hill is divided into lanes. Once you get to the bottom, you ride a conveyer-belt type thing back to the top of the hill. You'd get too worn out doing it any other way. Here's some pictures of the kids & their friends. The video is of my parents and another couple from church. (Dad, I'm so proud you went and tubed!!!!!!) Fun, Fun, FUN!!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Getting Real

After going to Financial Peace University last March, I have been attempting to work with a budget each month. Each month is broken down weekly. The goal is to spend every dollar on paper so that every dime of income is designated to a certain bill or savings. I used to use the budget forms included in the book that came with the class, but being the big picture person that I am, I now use my own system that lets me see the entire month, broken down into weeks, on one sheet of paper.

We got off-track at Christmas which I guess shouldn't be too surprising since this was our first holiday season with a new financial system. We didn't go off too bad, however, and the spending was much improved from previous years.

Anyways, I've been getting back on track as of January 1. It's kind of like going back on a diet for me. I am not a saver by nature. I am a spender (or as Dave Ramsey puts it, I am a spending nerd!) I like figuring out the budget. The only problem has been that I never seem to be able to stick with it 100%. I've been giving this alot of thought over the past two weeks and I've come to the conclusion that I'm not being real with my budgeting. I'm budgeting some areas far too low and have unrealistic expecations. Therefore, it is causing me to blow my written budget each month. I'm somewhat relieved because the budget isn't being blown because I'm going out shopping all the time. In fact, other than the grocery shopping, I don't shop. If the kids need jeans, I head to Goodwill. If socks or underwear are needed, I throw it in with the Wal-mart grocery shopping. So, I'm going to try to get real with my budget. I'm hoping we'll have a bit more success with more realistic expectations.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Show & Tell Friday

I haven't participated in Show & Tell Friday hosted by Kelli at No Place Like Home since before Christmas due to camera situations so I've had a few weeks about my post for today.

One of the things I always loved and admired at my grandparent's house was this shelf of my grandmother's that housed her teacup collection. There was just something about it that captured my attention and I just loved to stand there and look at it. One of the last times I was at their home, I went around and took pictures of some things that said "this is my grandparent's house" to me. Things that had been there for years. Things that I kind of always counted on seeing when I was there or things that evoked some very wonderful memories of my childhood times there. Of course, I took some pictures of this shelf.

About 1 1/2 years ago, I was browsing through Goodwill with my mom and guess what I found? A shelf just like my grandmother's. I snatched it up, not even caring about the price. That shelf was coming home with me. (I think it ended up being 4 or 5 dollars!) I hung it in my dining room on a large blank wall. It now houses two of my collections. One is a collection of little houses that Cliff collected for me one Christmas about 15 years ago. (has was so proud of himself!!) And a little collection of 1940-1950 looking children. On top, I have two "Gone With the Wind" figurines my mom gave me. Why? Because my grandmother had these same figurines on the top of hers. Yesterday while I was dusting it, I thought of my grandmother. These are the kinds of things I love having in my home. Things that evoke pleasant memories. Things that make us think those we love.

Thanks for stopping by today!

The Official Snow Day

This is what we woke up to today...

Depending on your location, we got anywhere from 2-4 inches. After receiving the call that school was cancelled, I slept in, enjoying a break from the daily morning school rush. Nice!!!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Snow Day

They have been predicting snow for today all week. As of this morning, it was supposed to rain on and off and turn to snow somewhere between 7 amd 9 tonight. I guess the temp dropped faster then the weather guys thought because it has been snowing for a good 2 hours now. It's a steady falling and everything outside has a nice dusting. We are supposed to get anywhere between 1-4 inches. But do they really know????

I had planned to make Taco Soup for tonight. I try to make a "crock-pot" meal on days I work. What a perfect dinner for a cold and snowy day. If you've never had this soup, it is so good. I pretty much follow this recipe except I did not add the water and I double it and use an entire packet of taco seasoning. It's all to taste. I would think also, that if you are vegetarian, you could just eliminate the ground beef. It would change the taste somewhat but I would think it would still be very good. I'm surprised I like it as well as I do because I'm not that big on beans. I have discovered, however, that I do like black beans when cooked right. In our household, only Cliff and I will eat it (the bean factor doesn't sit well with my picky, picky kids) so we'll eat if for a day or two and I'll freeze the rest for him to take for dinner while he's working.

We are hitting the "slopes" Sunday for some snow tubing fun. It's supposed to be very, very cold!!! We're all looking forward to it.

Have a good evening and Stay Warm!!!!!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Works For Me Wednesday

Just 2 short years ago, I had 4 kids in 4 different schools. Life was a little chaotic to say the least. In an effort to try to keep on top of things, I decided we needed some sort of a "message center." A place where the kids could keep their lunch lists, school calendars, spelling lists, etc. I decided to make it the front of the fridge because obviously, everyone goes there several times a day. I went to Wal-mart and got some of these magnet/clips. They were used to hold all the important papers, and also recipes and a calendar. It solved the problem of lost spelling lists, and lunch calendars.

These days, life is far, far less hectic. I still use the fridge center. My clips still hold 1 lonely lunch calendar and spelling list.

After reading through blogs about saving money and homemaking, I decided to begin to plan my meals for the week. I always thought I had sort of done this but I realize I wasn't as organized as I thought I was. It's been such a lifesaver. Instead of going in the kitchen about 3:00 in the afternoon and trying to figure out what's for dinner, I know!! I've already got it all planned out. Can I tell you how many times we ended up with pizza or McDonalds because frankly the thought of figuring out what to make and actually making it was pretty overwhelming. Not anymore. I have added a white board to my fridge center. I write the meals for each night thus ending the daily question of "What's for dinner?" and not just from the kids...but from the big guy too!!!! I wouldn't go back to the old way again. I LOVE having this done and so does my family. It works for me!

For more Works For Me fun, visit Rocks In My Dryer.

Monday, January 14, 2008

When we lived in Long Island, New York, summers were so much fun. It seemed like they lasted forever. We had a pool and spent so much time outside. If we weren't swimming, we were sunning ourselves.

My mom always had a radio going outside and she always had it tuned in to The Music of Your Life station. They primarily played music of the 40's and also some from the 60's and 70's. I guess it is from these days that I fell in love with music from the 1940's.

When we lived in Florida, my brother-in-law, Paul, worked in a nursing home. He had me come, about once a month, and play the piano during their lunch hour. It was so great. I'd go to the library and get books of music and play this music for the people. I LOVED it. I'd love when they sang along. It was so timeless.

When we first moved here to Kansas, I was able to get a Music of Your Life station but I guess they aren't going anymore. The closest one is broadcasted from Topeka...too far. I borrowed a couple cd's from the library but can't get the depth of music that was found on the radio. Until a year ago. Our TV gets satellite radio and there is a station that plays only 40's music. I am in heaven. There's nothing like hearing "I'll Be Seeing You" or "White Cliff's Of Dover." It's so nostalgic. Anyone else out there love this genre of music?

Sunday, January 13, 2008


OK, so I am going to be focusing on "simplicity" this year. And what do you know? The message this morning was out of Nehemiah 4:10...Nehemiah is at the half way point of building the wall and it talks about all the rubbish that needed to be removed. WOW!! I'm my home to continue to declutter and not get discouraged. I've got a long way to go but I'm going to take it one step at a time. I've got two bags in the trunk of my car to be dropped off at Goodwill tomorrow. Spiritually I've been working on that too. I've got a good devotional time set up. For the past 2 years I've been reading through the Word. I'm not really using any system, nor have I tried to read it through in a year. I'm just taking my time...I read until I feel I need to stop and think about the things I've read. I'm reading My Utmost For His Highest, journal and right now I'm reading two other books that I'll talk about in later posts.

Some of our friends had us over for pizza after church. It was so nice to spend some time with friends today. We are all about the same age. We have so much in common and they are just great people. I appreciate their friendship so much.

As usual for this time on Sundays, I'm preparing for all the grocery shopping tomorrow. I'm sitting here, though, thinking a nap sound very, very nice!!!!

Saturday, January 12, 2008

Ending the Week

It's been a full and busy week this week. Getting back into the school routine, back to work, Josh back at school, being sick, clearing out the Christmas clutter, catching up on the laundry....WOW!!

Last night we had a "game night" at church. Everyone brings along some board games and we just have an evening of food, fellowship, and fun. It was a good time. It's a really nice family event. This picture is of Emily & her best friend, Maddy.

I'm so looking forward to worship tomorrow. I've had an awesome week with the Lord.

Thanks to everyone who has stopped by and visited and read my ramblings this week. Thanks for your comments. May you all have a blessed Lord's Day and a great week ahead!!

Friday, January 11, 2008


While reading around "bloggyland" this morning, I became inspired by several posts. Each one of them has chosen a theme or word to focus on in 2008. If you're interested, you can read one here, another one here, and this girl has been done a study on what it means to have a clean heart.

After giving this some thought, I chose the word "SIMPLICITY." I need to simplify my life. I have a natural tendancy to overcomplicate things. I'm not sure what all this means as of yet (remember, it's something I plan to focus on for an entire year) I do know, however, that this will reach into every area of my life.

As I'm sitting here right now, I can tell you that one of my first steps to a simpler life is OUT WITH THE CLUTTER!!!!!!! Yesterday I spent several HOURS at my two desk out, filing, shredding, and putting away piles. I HATE clutter!!!!!!!! I'm planning on going through every closet, cabinet, drawer, hidden nooks and crannies, the attic, and the dreaded garage (that is a trash/clutter storage area) and get rid of all the junk that has tied us down.

One area that's helped me get rid of books and get new ones at the same time has been Paper Back Swap. You list books you want to trade, when they're requested, you mail them off. You then get credits that you can use to get new books. I've now got a sort of rotation system going. I'll get a new book, read it and then re-list it. I've reduced alot of unread "clutter" this way. It's worked very well for me. I have a button off to the side if you're interested in checking them out.

So what about you? You have areas you'll be focusing on this year?? I'd love to hear about it.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Thoughts For Thursday

I was reminded last Sunday of a favorite passage of Scripture of mine. I've been thinking about it all week.

The Scripture is I Samuel says,

" And it came to pass, when David and his men were come to Ziklag on the third day, that the Amalekites had invaded the south, and Ziklag, and smitten Ziklag, and burned it with fire;
And had taken the women captives, that were therein: they slew not any, either great or small, but carried them away, and went on their way.
So David and his men came to the city, and, behold, it was burned with fire; and their wives, and their sons, and their daughters, were taken captives.
Then David and the people that were with him lifted up their voice and wept, until they had no more power to weep.
And David's two wives were taken captives, Ahinoam the Jezreelitess, and Abigail the wife of Nabal the Carmelite.
And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God."

Not a very happy story is it. But the life lesson I learned is found in the last line of verse 6..."David encouraged himself in the LORD his God." David had NO ONE. His wives were gone, his family was gone, his men had turned on him. He was so low. It even says that they wept until they could weep no more. David, though, rose to the challenge. He kept going. How? He learned a valuable discipline. He learned how to encourage himself in the Lord.

This is what I shared with my friend last Sunday. She felt alone...isolated. Family had turned on her. She came to church lonely and angry. She came to church looking for encouragement and strength to make it through another week. Did she find it? Nope. What I shared with her is that sometimes we don't get "it" at church. Sometimes we leave not very encouraged. Sometimes we leave feeling as alone and as isolated as we went. It's then that we have to know how to encourage ourselves in the Lord.
I think He planned it this way. He wants us to come to Him. He wants us to know that He is enough, that He's all we need.
We DO need the church. We DO need the community. We DO need the corporate worship. But we need times of just us and Jesus alone.
As the hymn says, "nothing between."

I discovered this truth several years ago and it has changed my life. I hope it will change yours.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I'm often asked, "How does a boy from Atlanta, Ga meet a girl from Long Island, NY?" Well, here's the short version...

Cliff was in the Navy. The ship he was on at the time, the
U.S.S. Voge was dry-docked in Brooklyn, NY. Meanwhile, I was 2 months away from my high-school graduation. I was kind of looking for a date for my Jr-Sr. Banquet (Christian School alternative to the prom). A friend of Cliff's mom was attending our church at the time. She loved Cliff and considered herself to be his 2nd mother. When he would get leave from the ship, he would come out and spend the weekends with her (Margaret) and hence come to church with her. Now, here's kind a funny side note: Cliff has always looked a little older than he is and I, who was so naive, thought Cliff and Margaret were together...(She's about the age of his mother!).

Back to the I had this banquet thing coming up and my youth leaders suggested I ask Cliff. "Uh, no. I don't think so" because in my teenage mind, I thought any boyfriend of mine need to have blonde hair and blue eyes. Cliff was nothing of the sort!! Little did I know all the planning that was going on behind my back to set us up. We went out on a double date a week or so later on May 1, 1983 and that was about all she wrote. All of the sudden Cliff was all I could think about. I was head over heels. The entire time I was in school I never failed .....until that last semester. I was so totally gone!!!!!!! Within 2 weeks I knew I was going to marry him. He made me feel so comfortable and so cherished.

I thought I was going to go to college and Cliff was going to ship out to some far-away port. Didn't happen. College didn't happen for me. He did ship out to Florida. That was rough, and that was also before cell phones and free long distance. We had some whopper phone bills in those days. We did marry about 18 months later on Nov 24, 1984. We just celebrated our 23rd wedding anniversary.

Cliff is just an all-around good guy. People generally like him. He's a good dad to our kids and a good husband to me. He's generally supportive of my ideas (no matter how crazy!) and he is always very supportive of me!! I love him so much and I'm so thankful that God brought together that boy from Georgia and this girl from
New York.

Happy 46th Birthday, Cliff!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My Part-Time Job

I have been a coupon clipper since I was a teenager. I LOVED cutting them out and organizing them for my mom. I set her up a categorized file box that she'd take to the grocery store. I think I took that box with me when I got married.

When Amy was a little girl she would get so excited everytime I'd get out the coupons and scissors. I'd give her the "unwanted" ones or some ads and let her cut to her heart's content. Emily now likes to cut them out with me.

Until I got the internet, I thought I was doing really well if I saved anywhere between $5 and $10 with coupons. Not any more!!!!!! Reading blogs like this one has really taught me how to effectively use them and save much bigger dollars. I told Cliff that I look at this as a part-time job. It's what I do on Sunday afternoons (while I watch the race of course). I clip, file, and then hit the blogs and read up on all the sales. I pre-plan almost everything I'm going to buy. I use a list.

I ususally shop on Mondays but since I was sick yesterday I had to go today. I generally go to 4 stores....Walgreens, CVS, Walmart, and the local grocery. Today I saved over $150.00 between the coupons and sales. Do I ever feel good!! Now I will admit that this was a particularly good week for me but on the average, I save anywhere from $50 - $100 weekly. Not too bad for a few hours of work and definately good for our post-Dave Ramsey, Total Money Makeover lifestyle!!!!!!

Monday, January 7, 2008


Friday, I told Cliff that I thought I might be starting to come down with something. Today it hit!! I woke up with a migraine and it's just been downhill from there. I've been in bed all day and I'm miserable!

Sunday, January 6, 2008

When You Feel Like Giving Up

Dad (who also happens to be my pastor) brought an extremely timely, very practical message today based out of Nehemiah. Now, Nehemiah happens to be one of my favorite Bible characters because he was an awesome leader. He knew how to work with people, keep them encouraged, and finish a task.

We began today looking at four reasons why people give up and then we're going to be looking at solutions. Today's reason? DISCOURAGEMENT!! This is why I say the message is so timely. I don't know about you but it just seems that so many people are so discouraged anymore. You can see it on their faces. When we were at lunch today, Josh ran into a friend from high school. You could tell by looking at that boy's had discouragement written all over it.

Doesn't Satan love it when we're down? We're a society of over-worked, over-tired, over-drawn, over-exteneded people and then we wonder why we're not happy, can't sleep, have ulcers, and have no peace. Satan loves it!! We're virtual sitting ducks for his fiery darts.

I fought my share of battles in 2007. As mentioned in a previous post, I, myself have been down and "weary in my well-doing." I have decided to keep going this year. To not quit. To not make it easy for Satan attack when I'm so vulnerable. There are things I've got to do to make sure this doesn't happen. My mother has used this acrostic for years - H.A.L.T.

H=hungry (for God's Word)

I was maxed out on all four of these at the beginning of this week!! This year I intend to stay on guard and make sure I don't max out again. I intend to stay alert!!!

"Be self-controlled and alert.
Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion
looking for someone to devour."
I Peter 5:8
Josh left this afternoon and I did NOT cry!!! It dawned on me last night to ask God to give me peace. He did. DUH!!!! Now why didn't I think of this sooner???????

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The Big One

Josh is going back tomorrow. This is the big one. This time he's leaving and we don't know when he'll be back. It's a big "maybe" for Easter. Then he's leaving for California as soon as school's out. We can go see him at school but it's not the same as having him here at home. I'm glad he's getting the opportunity to travel, meet new people, and experience new things. I just don't know if saying goodbye to my kids will every get any easier. My mom says that it's still hard for her to say goodbye to her kids.
I found this new song by Michael W. Smith, "How to Say Goodbye." I'll warn you now, it's another "Butterfly Kisses" type song. (I think it's a little better.) But oh boy, is it hard to watch and listen to right now!!!!!!
Because of copyright stuff, I can't upload it but you can watch it here.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Thoughts For Thursday...

Yesterday while browsing through the various blogs I read, I came across this blog... the scripture she posted almost jumped off the screen at me. Some of what has caused my pensive thinking as of late has been a sitiuation that has been present in my life for about the last 3 years. It's one where the only control I have is over myself and my actions. Obviously it involves other people...people who were once very, very good friends. I have prayed and prayed over it, I have extended the hand of fellowhsip. I have apologized and tried to follow God's plan for mending broken relationships, and I have grieved over this loss. Everything came to a climax about 6 weeks ago and I've been struggling to reconcile this situation and find peace about the whole thing. Yesterday it just about consumed me...then a couple things happened:

1) I came across that blog with the scripture...James 1:2-3 and I realized that while very, very sad and extremely uncomfortable, this situation represents God at work in ME. I can't control the other party and neither am I responsible for them or how they respond to me. I am responsible TO GOD FOR ME!!!!!

2) During my devotional time, I read two things....
a) Acts 27:25: "So take courage! For I believe God. It will be just as he said." In a Beth Moore Bible Study, I learned the difference between believing in God vs. believing God. And that's something I need more of in my life....believing God.

b) My Utmost for His Highest. This link will take you to today's devotional but there is a calendar where you can go to previous devotionals. January 1 & 2 are definately worth a read and were a personal challenge to me on how to begin this new year. So in this situation and with all others, my goal as well as my responsibility is to give God the absolute best that I have. And I LOVED on Jan 2, where Chambers points out that "God does not tell you what He is going to do--He reveals to you Who He Is."
I can't tell you how these things changed my entire outlook on this whole situation and the joy I feel in knowing that through hard times I won't know what God is doing but I KNOW, because I BELIEVE GOD, that HE will reveal HIMSELF to ME!!!!!

Isn't our God amazing?????

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

New TV's in 2009

I came across an article today about networks switching to from analog in 2009. The government actually has a budget for this!!!!! Anyways, to use your older model televisions that ARE NOT connected to satellite or cable, you'll have to have a converter box. These boxes cost between $50 and $75. If there is anyone out there who still uses rabbit ears, the government is offering $40 coupons. Go here and you can get two.

With all that's going on in the world, I just find this whole thing so humerous!!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Works For Me Wednesday

It's been a LONG time since I participated in Works For Me Wednesday so I thought I'd start the New Year by joining in the fun!! You can read more at Rocks in my Dryer!!

I discovered two fairly new candle products that I'm completely in love with and made our holiday smell divine...

I just LOVE the Glade flameless candles. This is something I never would have bought but after a great Walgreens deal, I found myself owning 2. I am now totally sold on them. So Josh spots them and he loves the look of candlelight but obviously cannot burn candles in the dorm. I took advantage of a great deal at Target and got two more which he found under the tree on Christmas.

Another Walgreens deal got me two Glade scented oil candles. They are so fragrant. I love the holiday scents. In fact, I think I might be addicted to "Glistening Snow." I want to have this scent all winter long and I'm panicking that I might not be able to get it!! Each little candle burns for about 3 hours. It burns all the way down. No waxy mess to clean before you use another candle. I love it!! And I can't even descibe the rich fragrance. They even smell good unlit.

Happy 2008

At this stage of the holiday season, we are partied out, full, stuffed, and ready for routine again. It's going to come soon enough. Cliff starts back to work tomorrow. Josh leaves on Sunday and the kids go back to school on Monday. I think by Tuesday I will be lonely!!!!
Today was the day to pack up all the Christmas stuff. Its all back up in the attic except for one tree that has to go out to the garage. We'll take down the outside lights this weekend when it's supposed to be 50 not 5 like it is tonight!!!!!!! It's way too cold!!
Every now and then I have a day where I'm thought-provoked and pensive. I've been deep in thought today about the church. Not just our local church but "the CHURCH...the Body of Christ." Sometimes I think God must look at us and be so grieved at the way His children behave. How we argue and bicker about such trivial things while the important tasks go undone. God is grieved and Satan laughs. I've got so much running through my head right now. In time, God will give me peace about all this and He'll give me direction if I'm supposed to act.