Friday, December 14, 2012

21 Days of Gratitude Challenge - Book Review.

I received this book for free from Shelley Hitz with no restrictions or stipulations. I want to tell you about it anyway. Shelley got the idea to write this book when she saw people posting each day on Facebook (during the month of November) things they were thankful for. While she thought that was a good thing to do, why only around Thanksgiving? Why not do it everyday?

It takes 21 days to create/break a habit, so Shelley has set her book up as a 21 day challenge. Each day she tells you what she is thankful for, gives secular quotes and scripture to go along with being grateful or the topic of the day. Shelley gives you 'Application Tips' if you need a jump start or if you are struggling with the challenge. (And you know that even the best people in the world have days that they struggle with being thankful.)

I sat down and read her e-book, from beginning to end. Now I am going back and trying to start a habit of seeing all the blessings that the Lord has placed in my life (instead of grumbling about all the stumbling blocks that Satan has placed there). I am on Day 5 and am really enjoying recording in my journal things that I am grateful for.

You can do an online journal (Shelley gives you links) or you can do a handwritten on (which is my personal favorite). After my mother passed, I realized that I had very few things with her handwriting. Also, my Aunt has my great-grandmother's journals and I love looking back and reading some of those. I feel that I know her better after reading them (especially since she died while I was very young). I hope that my 'Gratitude Journal' will be passed down to my children, grand-children and possibly further. I hope that they learn/know more about me when they read them. I hope I can possibly inspire them to be more thankful also.

If you have an opportunity, I suggest you read Shelley's book. Even if you don't accept her challenge, I think you will enjoy reading her book and be uplifted by it. I think you will get the most out of her book if you join her on her journey and accept her challenge to create a grateful heart.

Shelley's book is a concise book, that is easy to read and understand. I love the scripture that she has sprinkled throughout her book that supports what she is trying to do. I also love quotes (I collect them) and I have shared a few of hers on Facebook myself.

If you ready Shelley's book and accept her challenge, let me know what you think. What you think of the book, if the challenge was easy or hard (and what made it so).

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Ask for Help

Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with life.  I don't know what to do, which way to go, how to act, I just feel like...I don't know anything.  I just want to cry.

I look at my small son and watch him trying to learn how to tie his shoes.  He struggles.  He fumbles.  He doesn't know what to do, he doesn't know which way the shoe laces go...he begins to cry.

I don't rush in.  I don't take over.  I sit by watching him.  Waiting patiently for him to ask me for help.  I'm sitting right there beside him.  After several minutes and lots of tears.  I gently say...

"Will crying help you tie your shoe?"
My son:  Shakes his head no.
Me:  "What will help you tie your shoe?"
My son:  Shrugs his shoulders.
Me:  "How about asking mommy for help?"
My son:  Looks up, wipes his eyes and says "Will you help me tie my shoes?"
Me:  "I would love to."

His problem to him seems monumental.  Learning to tie his shoe is big to a small child.  Sometimes overwhelming.  It is not that big of a deal to me.  I've done it for years.  I can do it without a second thought.

I wonder...I wonder...I wonder if God is just sitting, waiting patiently for me to ask Him for His help.  My problems which seem so big to me, monumental, overwhelming are probably not that big of a deal to someone that can make the blind to see, the lame to walk, someone who raised the dead, who is the creator of all things great and small, the great physician, the giver of every good and perfect gift.  I wonder if all He wants is an obedient heart to know Him, trust Him, and have faith in Him enough to ask for His help.

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.  For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened."
Matthew 7:7-8 ESV

"And I tell you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." Luke 11:9 ESV

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Calling all Moms and Women

First let me start by saying that I am not paid to endorse or promote i-mom, they do not even know who I am.  I have simply found that they are a great resource and I would like to share.

Have you heard of iMOM?  I first heard of i-mom last year at the MOPS Convention.  When I got home, I decided to check them out and I was amazed!  There are all sorts of resources on their website.  They have parenting ideas (from creative forms of discipline to chore charts - with lots of printables), they have marriage  ideas (from resolving conflict with your spouse to romantic date night ideas), they have organizational hints and tips, cooking & recipe ideas, etc.  It is called iMOM and when you are looking for ideas for your children, they have ideas for children of all ages (pre-school to teens), but with all the organization and recipes ideas, etc. it's not just for moms.

One of my favorite parts of iMOM is the Espresso Minute.  It is a short, get your day started e-mail (you can have it delivered to your inbox or you can check it out on-line).  Today's Espresso Minute was titled Top 10 Habits Your Family Needs to Break.  It really made me think.

iMOM is Christian based so the values that you see on the website are good and wholesome.  It even tells you about children's movies so you can decide before you go to the theater (no surprises).  For example:  it has a rating system on how much sex, language, violence, drugs, nudity, other might be in the movie.  If it is rated with a 1 for language, it will then have a note below giving a little more detail (ex:  childish name calling such as stupid; Holy Crap), so you know what words it uses (Holy Crap) or how words are used (name calling).  It will give you a brief synopsis of the movie and the message that it is trying to convey.  They are not trying to push their values on you, they just tell you how it is so you can make an educated decision based on your values.

If you haven't checked out iMOM before, check it out and tell me your favorite part of their website.  (If you have checked out iMOM before still let me know your favorite part.)

Thursday, July 19, 2012

More on Finland's Educational System

O.k. I am having trouble getting off my soap box.  Yesterday, I talked about Finland's educational system (you can read about it here).

I know that a few years ago, we received a new principal at the elementary school where my children attended.  That new principal decided that the children would learn better if she took away one of their recesses and they had more instructional time.

I was furious.  While in theory that might look good on paper most people know...not everything that looks good on paper is good when put into practice.  At the time my oldest two boys were in first grade and Kindergarten.  My first thought is..."They are children.  Let them be children.  They grow up so fast already."  Then I tried to reason her thought process.  O.k.  I had trouble with that because I am a mother and not a principal or a teacher (however, my mother was a teacher, my brother was a teacher and several of my sisters-in-law are teachers, so I do get quite a bit of feedback from them).

So, as a mother of boys, I know that my boys have lots of energy that needs to be used up.  As a mother of boys, I did not feel that my children (especially a Kindergartner and first grader) would benefit from loosing recess time.  I think that my children would not get any more instruction from less recess and more instructional time.  They would be full of energy and would not be able to keep their focus on what the teacher was saying.  I felt this was very detrimental.  I also feel that it is unfair to the teacher to try to teach children who were not capable (due to age) of having that long of an attention span.  The teacher could get frustrated (and the children would pick up on that), my guess is that she would spend most of the instructional time trying to get children to settle down and pay attention instead of actually instructing.

Finland's school system does not start children until they are 7 years old and they have lots of play time.  Finland's schools are ranked with the most successful.  The teachers in Finland have minimal homework for students, spend less time in the classroom and fewer hours at school each day than American teachers.  It is also rare for a Finnish student to be held back.  Finland also has a large amount of immigrants (some who don't speak any Finnish) and still they are ranked among the most successful.  

Here is a quote from the Smithsonian article (read the full article here)...

"Finnish educators have a hard time understanding the United States’ fascination with standardized tests. “Americans like all these bars and graphs and colored charts,” Louhivuori teased, as he rummaged through his closet looking for past years’ results. “Looks like we did better than average two years ago,” he said after he found the reports. “It’s nonsense. We know much more about the children than these tests can tell us.”
Why can't American educators learn that these are children and not statistics.  There are more to children than their test scores.

Finland does not seem to have any advantages that the US doesn't and the US doesn't seem to have more disadvantages than Finland, so why the BIG difference in the quality of education?

Here is a quote...
...said then deputy principal Anne Roselius. “We are interested in what will become of them in life.”

Did you get that?  "We are interested in what will become of them in life."  Not how well they will score on a test this year (because my pay rate is based on my students scores this year and next year they will be another teacher's problem - not mine).  Again not blaming the teacher - it is the system, the system is what has caused this.  In all honesty, if I were a teacher I would probably do the same.  I have to feed my family, I have to keep my job and get paid at my job to feed and clothe my family.  I have to have good test scores to keep my job and get paid for my job in order to feed and clothe my family......

After war time (you should read about Finland's History) they decided...

In 1963, the Finnish Parlia-ment made the bold decision to choose public education as its best shot at economic recovery. “I call this the Big Dream of Finnish education,” said Sahlberg, whose upcoming book, Finnish Lessons, is scheduled for release in October. “It was simply the idea that every child would have a very good public school. If we want to be competitive, we need to educate everybody. It all came out of a need to survive.”...

...“We have our own motivation to succeed because we love the work,” said Louhivuori. “Our incentives come from inside.”...
...Heikkinen admits. Then he added: “But we are always looking for ways to improve.”
In other words, whatever it takes.
I love this great country that we live in.  I am proud to be an American, but we are not perfect people and we do not have a perfect system.  We need to learn and grow.  If we try something and it doesn't work, go back to the drawing board and start over.  For some reason, we just keep trying to fix big problems with little band-aids and wonder why the bleeding won't stop.

We can learn something from Finland.  I feel that children can be a nation's asset or demise.  Children are something that need to be invested in.  They are our future, but most importantly they are our children.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Reading and Education

I was at an Usborne Books At Home Open House last night.  The UBAH Consultant asked a very interesting question:  "What country's children are the best readers."  (I am paraphrasing, can't remember the exact quote.)

There were all sorts of guesses and Asian countries were mentioned several times (just a little note:  the US was not even mentioned - and since we live here, I think that is really sad).  Do you want to know what her answer was?

Drum roll please.......................


Are you surprised?  I was.  (O.k.  Did the flag give it away?)  Well, that took place last night and then this morning I ran across this article here about the success of Finland's schools.  The whole article is very interesting, but this is one of my favorite parts...

"There are no mandated standardized tests in Finland, apart from one exam at the end of students’ senior year in high school. There are no rankings, no comparisons or competition between students, schools or regions. Finland’s schools are publicly funded. The people in the government agencies running them, from national officials to local authorities, are educators, not business people, military leaders or career politicians. Every school has the same national goals and draws from the same pool of university-trained educators. The result is that a Finnish child has a good shot at getting the same quality education no matter whether he or she lives in a rural village or a university town. The differences between weakest and strongest students are the smallest in the world, according to the most recent survey by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). “Equality is the most important word in Finnish education. All political parties on the right and left agree on this,” said Olli Luukkainen, president of Finland’s powerful teachers union."

Read more:

I have often thought that people try to run things that they know nothing about.  For years I wondered why government tries so hard to control education (they are politicians - they should stick to politics, educators should stick to education, etc.)  In a simplified example, would you want a non-French speaking person to teach you and/or your child French before you go on a trip to France?  Not the best idea right?  You look for someone qualified, a French teacher/instructor, a friend who lived in France for awhile and is fluent in French.  Or best yet:  a native born, lived in France his whole life, person to teach your French.  And if you can get someone who lived in the exact area that you will be visiting is even better.

Now, I will get off my soap box (because I could go on and on about it).  I just thought the article was very interesting.  The fact that I had never heard about Finland's successful school system before yesterday and in less than 12 hours I have seen/heard about it twice caught my attention and I thought was worth mentioning.

Please go to this link and read the rest of the article.  It talks about how the drop out rate is substantially lower than the US and they spend less per child on education than the US and yet still more children go on to higher learning after High School than the US.  They say that they prepare children to learn how to learn, not to take tests.  That is one MAJOR problem that I have with our school systems here.  Our teachers teach to the test (I'm not blaming the teachers because it comes from higher up, much higher up and trickles down).  It is a real pet-peeve of mine.  I cannot stand that my children are being taught to take standardized tests and are not being taught.  This is the main reason that I have considered home-schooling.

I do not currently home-school because I think there are other benefits to the school system, but those are quickly disappearing.

Finland, I salute you on your education system and what you are doing for your children!!!!!!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Winner of book give away

The winner of this book is Melanie & Josh.  Congratulations!  I will be contacting you about getting the book to you soon.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Are you a member of the GMC?


Are you a member of the GMC (Guilty Moms Club)?  Just about every mother I know is.  For some reason guilt comes with motherhood.  If your child has an ear infection, "What if I laid him down too soon after drinking his bottle and the fluid backed up in his ear canal?"  If your child falls down and scrapes his knee, "What if I had been watching him closer?"  We tend to blame ourselves (guilt) for things that we cannot control.

Another common emotion (for lack of better term) for mothers is failure.  If your child brings home a bad grade, "I didn't stress enough the importance of school and grades."  If your child gets caught in a lie, "I wasn't teaching him enough about honesty."  When our children fail, we feel that we fail.  Failure is a part of growing up, learning, etc.  Our children need to fail sometimes (they will learn from that quicker than the lessons that we teach them).  Our children's failures do NOT reflect upon us.

At our MOPS Steering Team Retreat a few weeks ago, our very wise coordinator said (and I am paraphrasing), "God is The Perfect Parent and look at how often His children fail."  Tamara, thanks so much for your words of wisdom.  That brings me comfort.

Our children are not puppets.  We cannot (and should not) control everything our children do.  We (and I am including myself in this) should relax a little and enjoy our children more (even their mistakes - it's a process).

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Morgan Freeman

"First thing that always pops into my head regarding our president is that all of the people who are setting up this barrier for him … they just conveniently forget that Barack had a mama, and she was white — very white American, Kansas, middle of America. There was no argument about who he is or what he is. America’s first black president hasn’t arisen yet. He’s not America’s first black president — he’s America’s first mixed-race president."   Morgan Freeman

Friday, July 6, 2012

My Big Bottom Blessing - Book Review and Giveaway

Note:  This give away is now closed.

My Big Bottom Blessing by Teasi Cannon is a book about body image and self-esteem.  This book starts out very strong.  It is humorous, touching, and something that most (if not all) women and girls can relate to.  We have all experienced or know someone who has experienced the feelings that Teasi Cannon talks about.

The middle of the book was a little repetitive to me.  I felt like she said the same things over (just in a different way).  However, the book has a strong and powerful ending.  I was glad I read the book.  It made me look at my physical self in a new light, God's light.

We as a society constantly compare our bodies to other women's bodies.  Bodies that the media say are beautiful (too skinny, perfectly airbrushed, etc.).  Instead of looking at how magazines say our bodies should be, we should read the Bible and see what God says our bodies should be (and let me give you a hint - they are not the same).

I feel that Teasi does a great job at trying to get women to change their focus or at least their measuring stick.  She does say that you should still be healthy (she's not saying to let yourself go and harm your health), but you don't have to be perfect or super skinny (which by the way is also unhealthy - the media won't tell you that).

This is a good read for women and girls in general.    I recommend this book to all women (or men that have women in their lives dealing with body-image issues), especially if you or someone close to you is struggling with her self-image.

Worthy Publishing was generous enough to give me a copy to give away.  So if you are interested in reading this book, leave a comment below and tell me how you think the media negatively impacts our self-image.  I will choose from one comment and that lucky person will receive a copy of Teasi's book, My Big Bottom Blessing.  You have until July 14 at midnight (CST) to enter.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Laundry Room Cleanup

I have been a crafter ever since I can remember.  I usually crafted on the kitchen table and then had to clean up to eat and then get it back out to finish the project.  If company was coming, again I had to clean up (because crafting is messy).  I always wanted a room of my own to craft in.  When we built the house I told Frank that I wanted a craft room.  We had a budget that we were trying to stick with so the only way I could get my craft room was to combine it with my laundry room.

I had a dream kitchen picked out and when I showed it to Frank, he said the house wasn't big enough for that kitchen unless...I was willing to give up my laundry/craft room.  I gave up my dream kitchen before I gave up my craft room.

It is next to the kitchen just down the hall.  It has a door that I can shut when I am working on a project so that company doesn't see the mess and I don't have to constantly put it up and get it out.  When the boys were younger I could craft while they were napping and when they woke up I could just shut the door and I didn't have to worry about them getting hurt on my crafting supplies or worry about them making a mess.

This also became a problem.  If I had unexpected company, I would throw everything in the laundry room  and shut the door - I would put it where it belonged later.    I had good intentions, but you know by the time company left it was time for me to start supper and then it's bath time and then bedtime.  Well, I was tired - I'd get to it tomorrow.   This problem got worse and worse until I just had a path to my washer and dryer (which set immediately to the left of the door).

We refinished the basement a couple of years ago so that the boys would have a place to play in bad weather.  Do they do that?  No.  It now feels like that was a waste of time.  Frank suggested that I make a crafting corner in the basement.  I have lots of cabinets in the laundry room to hold my supplies and I didn't have storage in the basement.  I did move my sewing stuff downstairs and left my other crafting supplies upstairs.  That helped with my laundry room clean up.

Well, I did not take before pictures because (in all honesty) I was embarrrassed to show you.  I worked on it for days and now I am proud and want to show you.
I don't remember the exact measurements (and Frank isn't here for me to ask) but I'm guessing it is about 
6' x 12' room.  The picture above are the cabinets to the right of the door.  That whole 12' wall has upper and lower kitchen cabinets.  With under cabinet lighting (helps to see my crafting projects better).  The counter top is perfect for folding laundry (see picture) or for crafting (see Cricut - lots of room for it).  I even have spools of ribbon that I hang under my cabinets for easy access, visibility and to keep my ribbon organized (which is hard to do with ribbon - I have mine color coordinated).

The larger cabinet (to the left of the photo) has my vacuum cleaner, carpet steamer in the lower section and more crafting supplies in the upper section.  Hanging on the door are over the door hanger organizers.  I just hang my gift sacks (that I reuse or new if I find a good sale and purchase ahead of time).

This is the same counter as the previous picture (taken from the opposite side of the room).  It is the section that is behind the door (that's where I keep my laundry baskets - so if the door is inadvertently left open company doesn't see my dirty laundry).  On the back of the door I have a hanger for rolls of wrapping paper, cross-stitch fabric, etc.

This is my washer and dryer (in case you couldn't tell) to the left of the door.  There is a little nook where they sit.  The nook was created by the closet in my boys' room on the opposite side of the wall.  To the right of my dryer I stack my broom and mops.  The cabinets above the washer and dryer are for cleaning supplies (and a few crafting supplies too).

Same space from a different angle (from the door), now you can see the mops and broom.  In the lower right corner you can see the pet food containers that I talked about in a previous post.

This is a close up of my ribbon storage (the left side of my cabinets, just above my Cricut).

This is more of my ribbon storage (the right side of my cabinets, just above the laundry baskets).
I used self-adhesive velcro to attach the measuring tape.  I can hold up ribbon or fabric and measure it where it is or I can take it down if necessary.

That was a tour of my crafting space.  Where do you craft?

Monday, July 2, 2012

Pet food containers

I have had opened bags of pet food (dog, cat and chicken) sitting in the corner of my kitchen.  I didn't know what to do with them, don't have cabinet space to store them in and it was convenient (just sitting by the door).

After I cleaned up my laundry/craft room, Frank said that I had plenty of space to put the pet food bags there.  (I guess it was bothering him, but he was such a sweetie he never said anything until then.)

Since I had just cleaned that room, I didn't want to start cluttering it up again and opened bags of pet food looked like clutter.

I went to Dollar General and bought 3 medium sized trashcans (with lids).  Used my Cricut to label the trashcans, I used navy blue vinyl and cut out the letters then put them on the trashcans (white trashcans w/ navy blue lids were all they had in the size that I needed).

I am pleased with how they turned out.  I think now it wouldn't look so bad in the kitchen corner, but I did put them in the laundry/craft room (hope it makes hubby happy).  I wish I could have gotten different colors to match my laundry/craft room.  I could probably buy spray paint for plastic and change it, but I was not up to that kind of project at this point (after cleaning the room for several days I just wanted things back in order as soon as possible - that may (or may not) be a project for another day).

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Stamped Coasters

When I was looking for tiles for this project...
I found these and fell in love with them.  They are very porous and I was afraid that my vinyl wouldn't stick to it very well.  But I really, really, really liked this tile.  So, what's a girl to do?

Check out Pinterest of course!  I found this tutorial and was able to use these great tiles to make these...
Note:  These are not the same tiles used in the tutorial mentioned above, I have also purchased and used those tiles too, both work and look great.  They just have slightly different looks.  Find what you like best and use that.

This is being donated to my MOPS group as part of a fundraiser (this is just 1 of 4 - all different, but coordinate nicely).

I used these as a 'Thank You' gift for a friend.  Champ (my son) even got involved and made a set to be used as a gift for someone.  I really like these.  I have made several sets as gifts, tied them together with sisal, ribbon, rick-rack, etc.  (P.S.  Since my last coaster tutorial I was able to find the felt circles and that is what I am using under the above tile coasters.)

Note:  These edges are finished so I did not have to glue ribbon around the edges.  If you like the ribbon look, it could still probably be done.  These tiles are rustic looking and I think the ribbon would be too formal for them, but maybe something else that's more rustic too???

Friday, June 29, 2012

Monogrammed Coasters

If you saw the tile coasters that I made here, well this is how I did it.

To make some monogrammed (personalized coasters), you will need 4 inch tiles (see below).  I got mine from Lowe's for about $0.33 each (the color is called Misty Taupe).  You will also need 1/4" ribbon in black or brown (to match your vinyl), spray sealant (Hobby Lobby - used 40% off coupon)...

...a Cricut machine will come in handy (but you could do it by hand - a little more time consuming and requires a little more skill - which I do not have - to cut it out with an exacto knife by hand)...

...E-6000 adhesive (the napkin is just to catch the drips in between uses)...

...something to place on the bottom of the coaster to keep it from scratching the furniture (I looked for felt circles - that go on the bottom of chair legs and couldn't find any, since I was in a hurry and saw these, I grabbed a bag).

First I placed the foam stickers on the back corners of the tile to keep from scratching the surface that I was working on.  (I chose 4 small squares in the same color.  You cannot see the foam stickers when it is flipped over.)

I then cleaned the tiles with window cleaner to remove any dust or fingerprints.  (Yes, that is an old sock that I use for my craft projects.  If the boys or hubby get a hole in the sock it goes in my rag pile instead of the trash can.)

I used my Cricut and brown vinyl to cut out letters (in this case the letter "D").  I cut out 4 in the size 3 1/2 inch.

To keep the letters from stretching when I peeled them off, first I removed the extra vinyl around the letters.  (If my Cricut blade was sharp enough, I might have been able to skip this step.)  NOTE:  Make sure you follow the directions that come with the vinyl for the Cricut - that will tell you about the pressure and blade depth that you should use.

This is what it looks like when I removed the vinyl from around the outside (and inside) of the letters.

Place one letter in the center of each tile.  I just eyeballed it, but you could measure it.  Make sure you press it on firmly and burnish it (bone folder might work for this - I just used the top of my fingernail).

Then I sprayed the tiles with the sealant.  It is hard to tell from the picture, but the "D" has not been sprayed yet and it is still matte, but the "S" has been sealed and is shiny.

I measure the ribbon (used brown ribbon to match the brown vinyl letter) to go around the tile with a little overlap and cut it.  (I use a wood burning tool with a wedge tip to cut all my ribbon b/c that will heat seal it to keep it from fraying.)

Then I put some E-6000 adhesive on one side and put the ribbon on top of the adhesive, pressing firmly.  Continue around all the sides...

Slightly overlapping on one side.

Here they all are completed.  From the top you cannot see the ribbon, but that adds a finished touch, if you are sitting on a couch with your coaster and drink on your coffee table, you would be able to see the ribbon then.  If you can find tiles with finished edges, you could skip the ribbon step, but the tiles that I found did not have finished edges.

Monday, June 18, 2012

A Perfect Pet for Peyton

When I went to MOPS Convention last August, I registered for a door prize (several actually).  Last month I got a package in the mail and I had won one of the door prizes.  I was so shocked (I had forgotten about it) and pleasantly surprised.

I had won 2 books, A Perfect Pet for Peyton and The Five Love Languages of Children (revised) by Gary Chapman.

I have read The Five Love Languages of Children (check it out herehere, and here).  I loved the book.  I have not read the revised version yet.  

When I received my door prize, I read A Perfect Pet for Peyton to the boys.  It is a book about the Five Love Languages and it teaches children about them.  It is a well written book and wonderfully illustrated.  It is written in a way that children can understand the love languages.  It even has a quiz in the back of the book to help children figure out what love language that they speak.  For those of you (I'm really thinking of your children) that are electronically savvy, you can also get a free interactive APP that goes along with the book.

If you are familiar with the Five Love Languages, I really think you will enjoy reading A Perfect Pet for Peyton to your children.  If you are not familiar with it, I suggest you reading it to your children anyway (children gain a lot from being read to - that's a whole other post), they will enjoy the story and the illustrations and you might just find that you will want to read any of the books from the Five Love Languages  series (yes, there are several).

Note:  Since I read the book (The Five Love Languages) originally, I have learned Rance and Anthony's love languages (they were too young at the time).  Anthony's is Gifts and Rance's is Acts of Service.

I have 5 men (big and little) in my house and they each speak a different love language (there are 5 of those too).  My hubby, Frank's is Quality Time, Lee's is Words of Affirmation/Quality Time, Champ's is Physical Touch and I just told you the 2 little one's languages.

Friday, June 15, 2012


We just finished VBS and I wanted to give my helpers a little something for helping me out.  I had the nursery class and we had double what we were expecting and we had the smallest classroom (because we weren't expecting that many).  It was fun, but it was a challenge.

I made a set of 4 coasters for each of my helpers (I had 4).  So I made 16 coasters total.  I personalized them by using their last initial. 

Three of my helpers had a last name that started with a "B" and one started with a "M."

After making them, I tied each set up with sisal.

I then placed them in brown kraft paper bags.  ( I love brown kraft paper!!!!!!!!!)  Stuffed with gold metallic tissue paper, added tags that I stamped, then wrote their name on the front of the tag with a gold metallic pen.

On the back of the tag I wrote a little note in gold metallic ink.

For a tutorial on how to do these, click here.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

As seen in our church bulletin...

“Whether you’re a mother with small children, an overwhelmed business executive or an overworked church leader, you too can take a lesson from Moses.  Father we need help with our priorities.  Teach us to understand what’s most important and needs to be accomplished and to let go of what we can so that we are at our best for you.  If we don’t come apart and rest awhile, we may just plain come apart.”
                                                   -P. V. Whitefield

Thursday, May 31, 2012

New Widget

I have added a new widget to the bottom of my blog. It is to find your own love language. It is very helpful in relationships (of all kinds). I have read the book the 5 Love Languages of Children and loved it, but I had a hard time figuring out my own love language. Now I can find mine out and you can too.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Awesome song

Really listen to the lyrics.  Beautiful music.  Beautiful Lyrics.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

I am rejoicing because...

...I have 4 healthy, beautiful boys.  Despite the fact that we thought we were unable to have children.

And the winner is...

...Keri.  Keri, thanks for your comment about the book MOMumental.  Contact me with your info (there is an e-mail button on the right side of my blog) and I will get the book to you ASAP.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

End of Year Teacher Gifts

Yesterday was the last day of school for the boys!  YEA!!!!!!!!!!  Summer break!  I made end of the year gifts for the teachers.  My theme was "You really 'nailed' it as a teacher!"  So they got mani/pedi stuff for their nails.  I think it is appropriate since it is summer and sandal weather.  They may be going to the beach for their summer break and want their nails to look nice.

This is what I included in each packet:  a small bottle of nail polish (summer colors), a small hand lotion, toe separators, an orange stick (cuticle pusher), and a 3 way file/buffer.

One of my sons has a man for a teacher and I didn't think that he would want stuff for manis/pedis.  So, sticking to the theme, he got a hammer.

Here they are all bagged up.  I made a tag that said "You really nailed it as a teacher" and tied one around the top of each bag.

I hope they enjoy their mani/pedi supplies this summer.
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