About Me

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Saint Joseph, MO, United States
I'm a stay at home Mom of two children and I have the unique privilege of being able to homeschool both of them. I am a stepmother to two older daughters one who is going to college. I enjoy shopping, baking, cooking, cleaning, organizing, running, clowning, making soap, playing piano and lately painting with ASCP paint! I am learning to enjoy the little things in life and make the most of it...clinging to my Savior through the tears that life brings and enjoying his GRACE He gives us every day! Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Review on Laundry Soap and Other Homemade Cleaners

So, since January I've been using Shaklee products for cleaning and I will NEVER go back. The money that I have saved is amazing and the cleaning power can NOT even begin to compare. I feel like such a fool for such money wasted. I still have not even used HALF of the Basic H2 cleaner I've only used a 1/4 of it at this time. It is really THAT awesome! Here is a link to that post

http://jme71-loudsilence.blogspot.com/2011/01/new-product-that-im-smiling-about.html

I just made my second batch of laundry soap Saturday night. I still have a little left but knew this week would be busy and it really doesn't take that long to make it. Three gallons lasted around five months...that makes me quite happy....and the only supplies that I have to refill would be the Tide...which also makes me happy. The link to that post is here....http://jme71-loudsilence.blogspot.com/2011/03/making-laundry-soap-and-fabric-softner.html

I however, am NOT a fan of the fabric softner but found a new recipe online and from my friend and I do ADORE it. I was also able to buy two gallons of vinegar from Sam's for $3.48! YIPPPPPPEEEEE!

1. 6 cups of warm tap water then add one cup of baking soda. STir well
2. Add 4 cups of vinegar...VERY SLOWLY!
Then add essential oil...just a few drops!

I'm still a huge fan of homemade febreeze and here is the link for that post. I did find a new scent that I adore called sweet pea from Hobby Lobby no less and it smells sooooooo good! http://jme71-loudsilence.blogspot.com/2011/03/making-linen-spray.html

I'm also a huge fan now of homemade hand soap....really loving that! Here is the link for that post! http://jme71-loudsilence.blogspot.com/2011/07/handsoap.html


Enjoy! I know I certainly am!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

What do you do with the ugly?

I used to live in a house with green shutters and a dalmation dog named Sebastian and a silly cat named Abuh. We had two cars and a motorcycle...we had a new baby boy and life to me was...perfect.

One night I rocked my baby boy in his nursery that I worked so hard to prepare and thought out every detail and sat in confusion at how it had all ended....I ask you...how do you deal with the ugly? I sat and rocked my baby boy knowing that he would never remember that nursery, this house, our car....I ask you...how do you deal with the ugly?

Two years passed....heads turned when people saw me coming....how do you deal with the ugly? People said they were praying....asking for the details....how do you deal with the ugly?

My prayers were answered in an emergency room...not at all how I planned it...not at all how I thought it would end....forgiveness sometimes doesn't come in words...it comes in silence...and waiting...and knowing....and sometimes it isn't asked for...its given...its given again and again.

My house is a family blended....I could tell you things that I deal with that would make you cry....tell me what do you do with the ugly? I bake homemade bread, fill empty tummies with food, fill empty and sad souls with praise music and rock and pray...tell me how do you deal with the ugly?

Sometimes in life we are the ones that have to deal with what has been given to us...even though we didn't "do" the "wrong". In "dealing" with the sins of others we find forgiveness...forgiveness for them...forgiveness for ourselves...and pray that the battle ends there...with us.

My prayer for each child leaving our home...is to walk in the path of the Almighty, to hear His calling on their lives...to know that they are NOT destined for failure because of the past...that we are made for great things.

Sometimes..the world pins me in...makes me feel that giving up is easier...I don't want to answer the questions that cause so much pain...I don't want to deal with the ugly anymore....but I know I must not give in and I must not hold it...I must continually give it to the Savior....because I don't know what to do with the ugly of this life and the scars that come from the pain that others put us through...and the things that they leave us with.

I count the gifts....the ugly goes away....I pray for grace...I count the gifts...and the joy returns...and the ugly.....flees...

270. Date night with hubby.
271. Chocolate cheesecake.
272. Watching movie uninterrupted
273. Quiet night on porch...just talking.
274. Sleeping E stirring when I kiss her chubby cheek
275. Son with wet head smelling good from his shower...I shall miss him at church camp next week.
276. Homemade febreeze spray.

May His name be praised!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

The Water is FINE!

The weather for the past month here as been HOT HOT HOT!

However, we are enjoying lots and lots time in the pool. My E has learned to swim under water with the help of her goggles. She has a hard time learning to hold her nose and close her eyes so we have her use her goggles and hopefully next year she will be able to do that!

Enjoy what's left of summer!




Wednesday, July 27, 2011

5K

Have you ever decided to do something and kept putting it off? That would be me...a big, fat...procrastinator...when it comes to myself.

I used to run in college...nothing amazing...just letting go of stress...I would run, run, run...I loved it! I also started getting the runners "high". I would get upset when I couldn't run....then I got married and had children...and got busy...but now...I'm ready to go!

www.runforgod.com I signed up at my church and we as a church are running, along with others and I'm really looking forward to it.

So, tonight....I'm very sore...from my pathetic workout of 30 minutes where I ran/walked 2 miles...yep....I've got serious work to do...I'll keep you posted!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

One Thousand Gifts-The Journey

I write this for my friends and my dear sister...who couldn't be there with me Sunday night...but I know they were praying for me....

This is what I was able to share with our GVBC ladies:

A month ago, I was asked to talk about this book....this book that I love...that has changed my perspective on life...and with that lesson....I came armed and happy and elated to share this book with you....but the lessons....had not been all learned...and haven't still...there is more to learn...and I find myself a little wiser, a little more weary...but still...I come with this book...for after this fight that I have had I now know that Satan does not want me to share it with you...and with that knowledge I come before you...hoping and praying that it will be balm to your weary soul...as it has been to mine. So, even though I'm a little weary and feel a little bloody from the battle...I am still so excited I could scream to share this book with you!

I was raised in a very strict Christan home where I was not allowed to pierce my ears, show my knees, go to movies or listen to secular music. I went to a private Christan school and graduated from Bob Jones University in Greenville, SC. My view of God growing up was...if I obey God and do the things that He expect me to, then I will have long life and bad things will not happen to me. Those that go through trials are being discipline by an Almighty God. This view of God was how I approached the throne each and every time I went to Him. I constantly was searching my heart for any sin that could be present and trying to purge it from within so that there would be nothing between my Savior and myself. I feared God, I loved God, but I lived in complete and total fear. I could not understand what He was doing when my first husband was killed in an auto accident and left me as a single parent to raise our son. I was filled with much regret that I had done something wrong and that God was punishing me and my late husband for past sins...I walked very close to leaving the church...if this was God...I wanted nothing to do with HIm.

I spent the next several years learning about GRACE. A word I had heard but never understood the meaning....GRACE....GRACE...and learning that my Savior loves me...all of me...every part...every part.

I have spent the last eight years trying to become a good stepmom, a good mother, a good wife, a good friend, a good servant...a good clown:), a good teacher for my children and piano students. I was getting lost in the mundane...I was becoming depressed....JOY? Where was it? I had lost my zeal...I knew that the Lord wanted me to be happy....I assumed that I wasn't reading the Bible enough...I needed a new study...I needed to be rejuvenated...but I needed something that would stick...not an emotional "Glory Jesus!" and then go back to my normal way of thinking. I needed to have my whole outlook changed. I could hear the Savior whisper to me "I offer you so much more!" How do you find joy in the cooking, cleaning, wiping of little bottoms, laundry, errands, schooling, taxi service for children...where Lord do you find the joy in the mundane?

My sister who is eight years older than I and wise in all things:) called me and told me to this book and get it right away...so I did...and life hasn't been the same ever since.

This book is called "one thousand gifts" and it is written by a wonderful woman named Ann Voskamp. I do not worship the woman but I do love the way that she has re-introduced me to my God...and show me all the things that I was missing.

In the beginning of the book she takes you through the tragic loss of her sister and how that changed her family and her outlook on life and God...and all things. The first couple of chapters i bawled so loud I was sure that I would wake everyone sleeping in my home...I trudged on knowing that a breakthrough was on the horizon.

She introduces you to the word Eucharisteo

Charis. Grace
Eucharisteo. Thanskgving.
Chara, Joy
Grace, thanksgiving, joy. Eucharisteo

"Joy is always possible, Whenever, meaning---now, wherever, meaning here" I was blown away by those words. Joy? In laundry...in cooking? In teaching piano. JOY? Yes, the Savior seemed to whisper...yes!

"The fall came about from "non eucharisteo, ingratitude, was the fall, humanity's discontent with all that God freely gives. Ungratefulness." I try so hard to teach my children not to be that way...but how often is my week ruined by a dishwasher that seems to need more repairs than I think are possible. How often do I complain about little things...ungratefulness....how could I expect them to change if I couldn't?

"Thanksgiving is the evidence of our acceptance of whatever He gives. Thanksgiving is the manifestation of our Yes! To His grace."

"Thanksgiving-giving thanks in everything is what prepares the way for salvation's whole restoration. Our salvation in Christ is real, ye the completeness of that salvation is not fully realized in a life until the life realizes the need to give thanks. In everything?" As I read those words I was so greatly convicted...I had not given thanks in all things...in fact my tongue cursed at HIm for taking away the man I loved, for changing my life...for making me walk this path alone...what had I done to Him to make Him do this to me? WHY?

For Ann it was a dare from a friend...to write one thousand gifts...and she wondered if she could do it. She began the list...not of things that she wanted but of things that she already had.

I started this list in January and these are just a few of the gifts that I have written since I began this journey:

1. Pink front doors
2. Babies snuggled against Mommies all wrapped up against the cold
3. Unexpected visit from friends
4. Warm fuzzy blankets
5. My son can vacuum well.
6. Mrs Meyers candles
7. The color turquoise
8. Blue speckled eggs
9. Clean laundry warm from the dryer
10. Clown noses
11. Chocolate
12. The smell of fresh cut grass
13. Facials
14. Room Service

I notice that as I begin this list that things come to me easier...I'm looking and I'm seeing things that I never would have taken the time to notice. I'm "living in the moment" taking all that I can from that moment...instead of letting it pass...not noticing the gifts that it is. There in is the brilliance of what God has been trying to show me all this time...my gifts have been given to me daily...continuously...but I haven't seen them...to busy...to caught up with the next thing on the agenda to really SEE...what He has for me.

A few quotes from Anne's book that have taken time for me to understand:

"wherever you are...be all there."

"Giving thanks for one thousand things is ultimately an invitation to slow time down with weight of full attention."

Now for the hard part....learning to give thanks for the good things is easy...its fun...its amazing...but now to let go and really let God work in me. Letting go of the fear....

"And if I can give thanks for the good things, the hard things, the absolute everything. I can enter the gates to glory. Living in His presence is fullness of joy---and seeing shows the way in."

John 14:1
Do not let your heart be troubled, Trust in God; trust also in me.

I have read that verse many times...but struggled with it every time.

Rom 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow.

How much do I trust? How often do I let go of the fear?

I remember sitting in the cemetery and watching the sun set...pleading with God to make me understand what I was supposed to do now...I really didn't want to get up...I didn't want to go on..I had followed, prayed, done everything in my power and my marriage ended here? In the cemetery? WHY? How could I trust in what He would do to me in the future if I couldn't trust what He was doing to me now? WHAT ARE YOU doing Lord I shouted? Why did you let this happen? In my darkest hour I felt His arms...I felt His love, His supernatural strength. To get up, to continue on...without fear!

"Without trust in the good news of Jesus, without trust in the good news of God saving work even in this moment, without an active, moment by moment trust in the good news of an all-sovereign, all good God. How can we claim to fully believe? This is the trust that I lack to know that if disaster strikes, He carries me even there."

I'm learning to release the grip of fear that is on my life...I'm learning to enjoy the freedom of letting go. To understand that my Heavenly Father will do nothing for me that is NOT for my good...to know that He loves me even more than I love my own children...and will not have me suffer needlessly.

More quotes from Ann:

"Can God be counted on? Count blessings and find out how many bridges have already held."

"Trust is the bridge from yesterday to tomorrow, built with planks of thanks."

I still get chills when I read this quote from Ann...this to me was life changing:

"The bridge and our lives shake not because God has abandoned, but the exact opposite; God is passing by. God is in the tremors. Dark is the holiest ground, the glory passing by. In the blackest, God is closest, at work, forging HIs perfect and right will."

How can I question? I do, but when will I let go...when will I realize how much my Savior loves me? My greatest fear? I can barely utter it...my children! My children being hurt, not following Christ, marrying the wrong mate...fear,fear,fear! However...when I count the gifts I learn to let go of the fear, the worry.

I have only scratched the surface on this book and the journey that you yourself will go on as you read about the love of God through the gifts that He has given each of us.

If I could leave you with one quote from Ann it is this:

"The quiet song of gratitude, eucharisteo, lures humility out of the shadows because to receive a gift the knees must bend humble and the hand must lie vulnerably open and the will must bow to accept whatever the Giver chooses to give."

"Let go of trying to do, let go of trying to control...let go of my own way, let go of my own fear, let God blow His wind, His trials, oxygen for joy's fire. Leave the hand open and be. Be at peace. Bend the knee and be small and let God give what God chooses to give because He only gives love and whisper surprised thanks. This is the fuel for joy's flame. Fullness of joy is discovered only in the emptying of the will."

Joy will come when I let go and live in the freedom of His will and surrender all to Him.

This past week I finally let go of something. Something that was good, but I needed to let it go. It hurt, I was scared and sad but I gave it to God and even though I'm shocked at the outcome I'm amazed by the freedom I feel. I realize that any good that comes from it is not because of my doing but because of God. Sometimes He says "let it go!" only He can work in that situation, only He can fix it! So with tears and frustration and dread I let go. Now I'm sitting on the sidelines, waiting and watching, praying and looking forward to the miracle that only He alone can do.

I pray that this book will be a blessing to you as it has to me and that the grace and joy of our Savior will become more and more real to you each day as you count the gifts that He has given you and you let go of fear...and embrace joy!

May His name be praised!

Unplugged

Tonight I speak on the book one thousand gifts....I'm a bit nervous...hoping and praying that the words I say will show the women how wonderful this book is and how much closer you can draw to the Almighty. Praying that I say what He wants me to say and NOT saying things that bring glory to self.

This week, this past month have been very difficult...I've spent a lot of time on my knees, in prayer....knowing that these situations are beyond my control. It's been good....it's always good to release yourself from a situation, to let go, to give it to God and watch how He works.

It's almost been a week since I've been on facebook and I can't say that its been so very difficult...first few days...way tempting...but now....I don't miss it as much. Don't get me wrong...I'm not saying there is anything wrong with facebook....it just for me is to big of a timewaster....I get to caught up in it. It has made me lazy...instead of sending a card to someone I would just write on their wall...which I'm sure they liked...but I sure do enjoy reading cards. It's freed up more time to accomplish more and the biggest thing is I no longer worry about who said what about my pics I posted or what I just put as my status...I no longer need approval because I no longer am participating...does that make sense? Does that make me a horrible person that I'm that petty that I get hurt when people say nothing about what I write or pics of our vacation? It probably does mean I have issues...which is fine to admit....and which is why I have now officially taken myself off of facebook. After the month is over I'm not sure what I will do to not fall in the trap...perhaps check it once a month, once a week? I don't know...I'm the kind of person that has to have routine and without it...I fall off the "wagon" so to speak. Is it sad that I have to refer to facebook as "falling off the wagon?"

Today finds me at home with my E again...it seems the coughing has returned...but luckily no breathing issues...for right now I'm enjoying the cloudy day and temp is 81 and no sun and it just rained....I'm sure my flowers and yard are grateful and maybe the pool is a cooler temp?

Enjoy your last week of July.....not much more time to get all organizing things ready before our school year starts! E and I are so excited but my T....not so much! See, whether they go to an actual building or stay at home...the feeling of school is still the same....they don't want to let go of summer yet!

Have a blessed day!

My gorgeous flowers finally bloomed...but due to the excessive heat...ya know 101 with heat index of 113...they wilted pretty much as soon as they bloomed....but I did enjoy smelling them and seeing them....for two days:)


Friday, July 22, 2011

Waiting for the Break

I am blessed that I have friends and family who approach the throne on my behalf.

Now, I sit here in the quiet of the day...watching my E make necklaces with her beads...enjoying the air conditioning and staying out of the heat. Today, my spirit is resting...as it has been fighting and has been attacked in a battle that I care not go into again.

We as women hide our hurt, hold it close, never wanting others to see. We can be strong, never letting others know of the hurt...smiling at our children telling them that its ok...inside the storm is brewing and the only one who hears us is an Almighty God...who else do I need? He sends me friends...and sisters...those who close in around me...and approach the throne on my behalf...and that is what sustains me. That is what gives me strength to continue....I feel the pull of Satan and his attack ceasing...but the battle is not forgotten...the enemy is not gone...but I'm blessed because in this fight....God has fought for me...because in my own strength I am so weak...and in Him I am made strong.

Sunday I speak on the gifts that have changed my life...that I believe can change every woman's life for the good. Learning to let go of the fear...even in these past days and seeing His love for me...and the miracles that can take place...when we let go....and let Him...and we step away...and let Him...and we fall on our knees...and let Him...and we come humbly before, truthfully showing our fears, our hurts, our concerns, our anger..all of what seems so ugly...but yet without seeing the hurts of our hearts and the raw anger there can be no healing....so I show it to Him....and He comes...and He heals...and I stand waiting....for the miracle...of the healing. He and He alone can heal and restore....and I am bending, pausing, praying...waiting. Satan is still attacking...I feel it even now...and I know that He is not wanting me to tell of the gifts that God has given to each of us...that can draw us closer to our Almighty.

Who knew when I said yes that I would share on a topic of gratitude that for a month I would be under spiritual attack? Who knew that Satan would be so upset about me sharing about the gifts....but he is...and I press on...for I am weary...but grateful...for the prayers, and for the lessons...but wishing the hurt could be gone...and the thorns disappear....forever. On my lips I have paused and quickly shut my mouth not wanting to utter the words "Why?" I have shut my eyes as the tears begin to fall and I find myself feeling much of the same way that I once felt ten years earlier...wondering where I went wrong...why am I here again? Yet, here I am...and like everyone right now praying for rain to fall to bring relief...I am there asking if He might show me the way.






Monday, July 18, 2011

Lifting

My first day without facebook...easy and hard. I filled it with things that matter for eternity...with things that will last. I filled it with making memories....for others.






222. New freckles on E's face
223. Swim time in our pool with my E. The smell of suntan lotion and chlorine.
224. Hot buffalo chicken sandwiches made for our 17 yr old bday girl...her request...she loves that I make them...and I will miss her next year....so I make them.
225. T getting his first 3 merit badges for boy scouts--so proud.
226. E singing deep and wide
227. Me--giving up facebook to experience more of what life is for...not making me more spiritual...realizing something that consumes me more than it should.
228. Recognizing I need friends...perhaps I need to be a better one first.
229. Not focusing on the date that today is...letting the Almighty control my destiny and not questioning it.
230. Finally realizing and hearing the Savior say to me...."You have filled your heart and life with things that have taken your eyes from me." and doing something "radical" to change it.
231. The color turquoise...I have always loved it...I'm finally embracing it!

A Break

I sat in church yesterday....annoyed....at everyone....at everything...no reason....I love these people that sit in these chairs...that have helped me in life...but there I sat annoyed.

Since January I have been taking the journey with one thousand gifts. I am amazed at the changes in life...but as soon as my Pastor's wife asked me to share with the women of our church the amazing book that I love and give to just about everyone I meet...Satan put his nasty grip on me. It started before we went on vacation with something I lost very precious. Then, when we returned around five to six things went wrong...annoying things...not horrible...just annoying.

My husband then went on a missions trip with his two oldest girls and I stayed at home which really I prefer, I got quite a lot done and have some quality time with my children. My children went to VBS and my son went to I-Serve. Everyone in our family seemed to be on a spiritual mountaintop....except me....I was annoyed...don't know why...just annoyed, almost angry....at life...no reason...just had the blahs.

Finally, I believe that it has to do with the constant state of my life of media. My phone, my facebook and even my blog....seriously...I'm amazing that I get done what I get done with all these distractions. So, I'm taking a break from facebook. I'm taking my "following" list off of my blogger....not because I don't want anyone following me...but because its turned into a "contest" with myself of who is following and how many comments are made? Seriously, am I in highschool again? How many people signed my yearbook done media style? Is this what God had me start this blog for? How many people "follow me" How many people "comment"? It's ridiculous! There are so many things that I need to do besides facebook....don't get me wrong...I've been able to keep up with friends and what they are going through. I think media is a good things when used in the proper way and not when it becomes an obsession.

I've told my son that he won't have facebook for awhile. We already took away cable for over a year in our home and frankly...we really don't miss it. We do have netflix so my children can watch shows instantly on our tv through our wii remote but cable...don't have and its lovely. Now, I'm going to take the facebook challenge and tweak some things on my blog.

My time is better spent with homeschooling my children the way I want to, serving in other ministries for our church and helping those who need it.

So, if you don't see me on facebook that is why...and if your confused on why I took down my followers...its again...nothing personal.

I've become someone I'm not happy with. Change is needed!

May His name be praised!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Chalk Wall and Desk

So, my husband comes home tonight after being gone for eight days. We have never been apart for that long and yes I missed him especially at night...but boy oh boy did I accomplish a ton...

So, after I put a pool, painted two pieces of furniture and cleaned out two freezers and a fridge and organized a million things that I've been putting off I got to thinking....hmmmm

So about 1am I decided to get painting...perhaps not the best time but I think it turned out awesome!

Before I truly like the chalkboard spray paint...but after using this...I'm a fan. Black paint is difficult to use being a dark color but well worth the effort...






Now we can write E's Bible verse for the week on our chalkboard wall....I'm quite excited about all the possibilities!

Pulled One Way...then the other

July 18th...will be but would have been my 14 yr anniversary.....does that make me crazy that I still think about that day....

This summer...I keep looking at my T...and his hands...I remember those hands....that smile...that walk....I have seen it before....but it seems that that life was a dream...sometimes I wouldn't believe that it existed if I didn't have a walking reminder....






I still feel a twinge of guilt....I'm remarried now and soon we will celebrate our 8th anniversary....but still...I feel pulled....to grieve one...and to love another...makes me feel that I'm doing something wrong.

When I would feel down my late husband would put on the song directly taken from scripture:

Ps. 100:1-5

Shout for you to the Lord, all the earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;his faithfulness continues through all generations.

I ask for prayer for my son as he learns this lesson...thinking that losing his Dad at the age of two would not leave a severe impact on him was an oversight on my part. We all want to know where we came from and what makes up our personality. However, he has to learn that what God allowed...is for our good...no other explanation or reasoning will satisfy...just that it was allowed and good shall come.

May His name be praised!

The Bloggers Prayer

If you would have told me that I would start a blog a year ago I would have laughed at you. If you would have told me that people actually read it...I would have been even more shocked. However, as its almost been a year since the first time I decided to venture out and start this adventure I thought I should celebrate. So, here I am celebrating.....yeah...not a big party eh?

I will not tell you that having a blog isn't frustrating and sometimes depressing. Going for months without anyone commenting on anything you write but complete strangers visiting your blog can be a bit depressing. However, many times I've wanted to hit the delete button and just "take my blog and go home."

Do I write for the "praise of men"? Do I have a blog so that I can feel good about myself with how many people are "followers?" What exactly is my purpose?

Many of you that faithfully read my blog are very private...and you tell me privately the things that you appreciate that I write and how much God has been working on your heart at the same time He has been working on mine. I tuck those compliments away and pull them out on days when I don't feel so "appreciated."

I have learned that I am who I am....I am special only because God created me. I fail, I mess up, I am humbled by His grace to me...and I'm learning to let go of fear.

Tonight as I was picking up my children's friends and my own from VBS God gave me a special "gift" that had I not been reading Anne's book "one thousand gifts" I would have just glossed over...not really taking in the moment. However, I recognized the moment for the gift that it was and took it in and closed my eyes and really "enjoyed" the moment. Around 40 or so children..my E included singing "Lord I lift Your Name on High" complete with motions being led by two women that I call my dear friends. Now, don't get me wrong...a little bit of embarrassment followed as I had to grab my E who thought that the circle they formed to sing the last couple of songs meant that she could RUN around it...no worries...Mommy is fast you see. I decided to embrace the moment of the gift that God had given me and enjoy it and remember it.

As I write my daily things to you all...whether its cooking, cleaning, homeschool, clowning or just babbling...may I focus on the reason of the blog...not to receive the approval of man....(don't get me wrong...comments and followers are nice) but my sole purpose?? May it always be to keep doing what He has commanded me to do....no matter how "popular" I am....or not.


May His name be praised!

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Sidewalk Chalk and Tye Dye Shirts

Hope your having a great summer! This week I actually have a quieter house so I decided to let my two children have their friends over and its HOT HOT HOT! So, we are very grateful that we have a pool...not a huge one but big enough that even Mom can get in and feel refreshed!


After the kids went swimming for awhile I decided to make homemade sidewalk chalk with E and her little friend! THEY LOVED IT! I got the idea from makingmemorieswithyourkids.blogspot.com She has absolutely the coolest ideas....and cheap...LOVE that!

So first here is what you need to make it happen!


There is no measuring of the plaster of paris...you just add water...you want it a little thicker than pancake batter...then you add the tempera paint


We had to add a lot of paint to get the desired color but they had fun stirring!

Then we put it in the molds and let it set. It sets up pretty quickly!


Then we just let it dry...its RIDICULOUSLY humid here right now so that is taking a little while...other than that the girlies were THRILLED and I used it and it worked quite well! The recommendation I would give would be to make these thick so that little hands can hold on to them better! All supplies for the project were bought at Michaels and I woud say the whole tag was $10 and I have a TON of plaster of paris left which we will use for other projects. She also suggested using toilet paper rolls for a mold for chalk sticks like you buy at the store putting foil at the bottom...but we wanted hearts...so that's what we did.

Last thing we did was to make tye dye shirts. YOu can buy these kits anywhere and the shirts are ALWAYS on sale. They had a deal going on at Michaels for 5 shirts for $10. I bought mine at Hobby Lobby when they were having a 50 percent off sale...and I bought the kit half off as well. They are easy and kids of all ages LOVE them! I have four kids walking around with these shirts on today! They were so excited about wearing them!


Today, find me a bit exhausted. I'm getting projects done and my kids are involved in VBS and I-Serve this week. A good and fun week....today I'm working on more projects and cleaning....later a swim with my E...all alone...she's quite excited about that!

Have a great day and stay cool!

Monday, July 11, 2011

Allergies

Many of you know the struggles that I have had with my E over the past two years with her allergies. After her first year of life with constant ear infections and not speaking...I finally switched pediatricians and went to one that sent us to our ENT which put ear tubes in and since then we have had progress with speech! This is also our first summer where she can learn to put her head in the water. Even though we wore ear plugs and a band around her head to hold them in place when she was in the water...she was still encouraged to NOT put her head under the water. I cannot tell you what joy filled my heart as I have watched her swim and so excited to fully enjoy a water park!


WE have dealt with stares from people wondering what was wrong with her. I have gotten used to carrying ear plugs with me EVERYWHERE! Truly you cannot imagine how awesome it is to give her a bath with no plugs and to let her get in the pool without constantly checking to make sure they didn't fall out. I know that there are worse things....but truly we were so happy when the ENT gave the go ahead!


As many of you know..even with this problem fixed we have struggled with her health. Going back and forth between the ENT and the pediatrician on what's wrong with her. Finally, the ENT declared she had asthma trigged by colds so she was placed on Allegra and nasonex and saline...and we did this everyday according to the directions given to us. Still, I felt that THERE had to be something MORE! So, our pediatrician wanted us to wait to hear from our ENT on allergy testing. Our ENT did not want us to do so...because he thought it to painful and the results to unclear at such a young age...so...I went back to who helped me out with Trey...and the results are QUITE interesting!

We went to our chiropracter. He believes in natural enzymes which have been taken from our food which is causing the allergies that we all are putting in our food. If you don't believe me I even talked to my vet about this because our dog even has allergies...he said its because of the food that they make for dogs now...seriously....they even put GRAVEL in the food now!

So, E's test results? She is allergic to corn! When I heard that I groaned! EVERYTHING has corn in it! I have to tell you we have been cutting her back more and more for almost two months now and she's breathing better...no medication of any sort...and biggest is her behavior! She actually got a EXCELLENT from her dance teacher. She's not a bad kid...she just couldn't sit still...seriously...its like someone put literal ants in he pants. I would watch her completely biting my nails praying she wouldn't misbehave! Her attention is better and she just sems to feel better. The most interesting thing is she's not constantly WANTING to eat! Lest you think I allowed her junk constantly I didn't...but it wasn't until I became a label reader did I realize just how many things have corn syrup or some sort of CORN in it!

Tonight at the store they had Tropicana juice for just a buck....nope....corn syrup. Applesauce....most kinds...corn syrup! Fruit snack, chips, all candy (duh), pop, icee's, seriously...it takes me an hour to go shopping. Even sherbert, ice cream. Luckily for us there have been many to go before us so there are more organic choices. She no longer craves fruit snacks like she did before. I can tell instantly what has corn syrup in it that I'm not sure about as soon as I give it to her...she hogs it and sucks or gulps it competely dry before anyone else can get to it.

So, we have about a month before her usual symptoms start up again...so we are hopeful that this year will be better and that I will be able to attend church this winter...praying that this is the answer. In the meantime...for those with kids with allergies...I officially feel your pain...SORTA!

We are hopeful that this is the answer and that her quality of life during the winter months will be much improved and not spend in hibernation!

Thanks for your prayers!

Blue Chair and School Desk

So this week I'm tackling projects like crazy and it FEELs so GOOD!

First up, this chair...it hold sentimental value for my husband and his sisters...it is the chair that their Dad sat in while he worked on clocks at his shop. The first time I re-did it my sister-n-law cried....not because of what I did but because she was happy to see it again and all the memories she had of her Dad.

So, this time it had been black...and I needed to change it up. So first, I gave it a coat of primer.


Then I just coated the chair...I love the details in this chair....this chair is very heavy...I love it!


Then I gave it a coat of this...


I have always loved blue...always...its my son's favorite color also...don't tell anyone though...he'll change his mind. I recently changed some things up in my kitchen which really got me inspired to put blue throughout my home!

I found this at a black top swap at one of my favorite stores here! I adore it!

So, then I changed a couple more things in the kitchen....


Then, I saw a blog the other day and that gave me an idea! Last year, I had a friend that was moving and she gave me this....


We loved it! However, I just wasn't "feeling it". So...I was inspired to create this!


I then used chalkboard paint for the desk top and I put it in my kitchen...gives me that pop of blue I wanted and also practical...my E is excited about writing on her "chalk desk"



So, I guess your curious about the chair? Turned out lovely and is sitting at the top of my stairs on the second floor! It says "come sit here" doesn't it!

Have a happy day!!!