Friday, May 31, 2013

Friday Pinterest Wannabe Fashionista: Week 2

This weeks attempt at copying an outfit I have pinned using items from my own closet. 

The Original: 
Striped top, colorful cardigan, jeans

My version:
Striped top, colorful cardigan, jeans

Do you try to recreate looks you see on Pinterest or elsewhere?  Share your link down in the comments!!

Thursday, May 30, 2013

15 Years Ago Today...

15 years ago today I gave birth to a beautiful little baby boy. Today that boy is taller than I am; but in my heart he is still my "little boy".  I wrote this post last year for his birthday, but it's still as relevant today as it was a year ago. Happy Birthday to my Little Man!!

Back when you were little - I used to take afternoon naps with you; your soft head under my chin.

Now - You don't take naps, and you stay up later than I can keep my eyes open.

Back when you were little - You had the cutest chubby little legs, complete with little Michelin man rolls on the thighs.

Now- You are taller than I am.

Back when you were little - People used to comment on your adorable little cheeks

Now - Those cheeks are showing the first fuzz of facial hair.

Back when you were little - You used to come running to show me every little treasure you found and share every part of your adventures.

Now - You are the king of one syllable answers and grunts.

Back when you were little - You used to like my singing and would sing along with me.

Now - You roll your eyes when I sing in the car and beg me to "Please stop"

Back when you were little - You used to plead with me to rub your back while we watched TV or read a book

Now - Ok, maybe some things still haven't changed.

Back when you were little - You were my sweet little boy. The cause of my first gray hairs. The tiny little male child I loved with all my heart.

Now - You're not so little anymore. You're growing more and more independent. But you still cause me new gray hairs. And I still love you just as much as I did back when you were little.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

In Weakness

Recently our small group at church was having a discussion about strength in weakness.  A line of conversation sprang up about how we find how strong we are in our times of weakness and how even our weaknesses can be strengths in some situations

But as I considered it later, I began to feel that in chasing that rabbit we were missing the point somehow.

It's not about how strong WE are in our weakness.  It's finding GOD'S strength and learning to rely on Him in our times of weakness and hopelessness.

I truly believe sometimes we have to come to that point of where we find the end of ourselves.  Where we have no strength left and are completely over come with our weakness.  Where we give up.  Where there is absolutely no other answer. 

That's the place where we really learn that the only answer is God.  And we realize that we have to lean on Him for everything.  It is only in those times that we can catch a glimpse of how small and weak we are and how BIG our God is. How great He is in our weakness. It is here that we find our full dependence and learn to trust. 

This is the place where our faith grows strongest. In weakness.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.~ 2 Corinthians 12:9

 For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. ~ 1 Corinthians 1:25

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Picture Memorial Day

The family had a quiet weekend, with lots of outdoor chores getting accomplished and some relaxing fun along the way.  I could describe our Memorial day for you, but I'll just let a few pictures speak for themselves.

A beautiful sunshine filled Memorial Day
Two of my favorite guys
The peonies are in bloom!
Cooling off in the creek
Is it just me - or does anyone else see the bird?
Grand baby and his mommy taking a walk

Monday, May 27, 2013

Keeping On, Keeping On

Another week, come and gone.  I can't say it was a great one as far as my health and fitness goals.  Not terrible.  But there continues to be room for improvement.  See for yourself -

  • Drink the recommended amount of water each day: I am drinking more water than I used to.  But I'm still not getting the recommended amount most days.
  • Exercise at least 3 days this week: you know what they say - 2 out of 3 ain't bad.
  • NO soft drinks!: Check!  Yah me!
  • Make an appointment for an eye exam:
  • Plan for 3 day juice fast: I think is going to start next week.  Got to get through the male offspring's birthday weekend first.
 I refuse to beat myself up for not getting each goal perfect. Rather to brush myself off, and move ahead.  It's a work in progress, right?

 This week's goals:
  • Drink the recommended amount of water each day 
  • Exercise at least 3 days this week
  • NO soft drinks
  • Prepare to start juice fast next week 

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Wisdom from Oma

Sometimes you think you are really, really, really hungry - 
but nothing you can find to eat sounds any good.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Mmmm... Homemade Enchilada Sauce

I'm spotlighting my blogging - and culinary -  skills over at A Wise Woman Once Said... today.  Come see how I made a huge batch of homemade enchilada sauce and froze enough for 3 extra meals.

Follow Friday Four Fill-In: Co-hosted by Moi!

It's time for the Follow Friday Four Fill In Blog Hop! Each week, Feeling Beachie gives us four statements with a blank for you to fill in on your own blogs.

Want to be featured as a Co-Host to the hop? Come up with four fill in’s of your own and email them to her at If she uses them, you get a nice little mention in that weeks hop! Please help her out and email some statements!

This week’s co-host is Yours Truly!! 

 This week’s statements:
1. One of my best and worst traits is that I ______
2. If I could escape for a day, I’d _____
3. The best part of ___ is _____
4. When I was young I thought _______.

My Answers:
1. One of my best and worst traits is that I can be very stubborn
2. If I could escape for a day, I'd sit on a beach and read
3. The best part of the day is when the Man of the House gets home.
4. When I was young I thought I didn't want to have children. 

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Coffee Talk

Think about the people you are closest to.  The people you have the strongest relationship with.  How often to you talk to them? Weekly? Daily? Multiple times a day?

How often do you talk to God? If we want to be closer to the Lord and to have a deep, strong, lasting relationship with Him - we have to talk to Him on a regular basis!

Almost every morning I get up, pour a cup of coffee, grab my Bible, and sit down to talk with Him and to see what He has to tell me today.  Sure, a lot of mornings I am doing most of the talking.  But He certainly has a lot to tell me also.

I tell him what I am up to; and He gives me guidance. I tell Him my concerns and worries,explain where I am hurting; and He comforts me. I tell Him about the joys I have experienced and praise Him for them; and He shows me more blessings in my life. I tell him what I think I want; and He tells me what I really need.

It's like having coffee and conversation with a dear (and very wise) friend.

"In the morning, LORD, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait expectantly" ~ Psalm 5:3

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Chocolate Stout Cake

Join me to day at "A Wise Woman Once Said..." where I am sharing how I made this yummy Chocolate Stout Cake (from a mix!)  

A Week of Good Intentions

So, last week was kind of a mixed bag - full of good intentions, but not exactly the fulfillment of many goals. I'd like to blame this on the fact that I was trying to manage a fierce sinus headache for 3 days in a row last week.  But to be honest, the headache can't be held responsible for some most of the goals not being met.  See what I mean...
  • Eat a healthy breakfast every morning (typing this as I finish a bowl of shredded wheat with banana, strawberries, and skim milk because I realized the leftover cheesecake in the fridge didn't really meet the "healthy" criteria) - Yes!  This one I managed to accomplish.  Although I'm not sure the french toast the male offspring made for me on Saturday fits into the "healthy" category, it was breakfast.  And most days I had either some sunflower butter toast and fruit, yogurt with berries and walnuts, or cereal with skim milk fruit.
  • Drink the recommended amount of water each day - turns out this is a lot more difficult than it sounds.  I'm still working on it, but not quite getting to that recommended amount most days.
  • Exercise at least 3 days this week - ahem... no.  I only made it to the gym once.  A combination of laziness and that pesky headache.
  • NO soft drinks! - I actually did pretty well on this one.  I slipped up only once, when the female offspring and I grabbed lunch while shopping at Sam's Club.  I filled up my cup with some Dr. Pepper and gulped it down without even thinking about the "no soft drinks" rule.  Oops!
  • Use neti pot before bed each night - No.  I used it two nights, and on the others I just didn't.  I didn't think about it a few nights.  And on some of the nights I thought about it, I was just too tired to deal with mixing up the solution.
  • Make an appointment for an eye exam - Another no.  No good reason.  Just didn't do it.
Bleh... seeing it all spelled out like that makes me realize that there is great room for improvement. Yep, got to do better than that!  Let's see what I can manage this week...
  • Drink the recommended amount of water each day
  • Exercise at least 3 days this week
  • NO soft drinks!
  • Make an appointment for an eye exam
  • Plan for 3 day juice fast

Friday, May 17, 2013

Friday Wannabe Fashionista

I've never been accused of being a fashionista.  Especially since I've put on some weight in the last few years, I just don't feel at ease in a lot of clothes and go for comfort and what I think might hide the bulges.

But I'm still a fashionista wanna-be at heart.  I happily go about adding cute looks I like to my Pinterest boards.  But I never actually do anything with all those ideas. Well, I think it's about time I started trying out some of those looks and outfits that I've admired.  Today,  I'm picking one of the looks and shopping my closet!

Here's the original outfit I pinned...
A loose white tank, black blazer, jeans.  layered necklaces.  Casual and classic.

And here's my version ...

 Loose layered white tanks, black blazers, jeans.  
This was comfortable, and I felt well put together for a day of running errands. 

Thursday, May 16, 2013

A Spirit of Gratitude: May 16


Listening to the male offspring talk to himself while getting ready for school
Quiet Saturday mornings
When the Man of the House fixes dinner
Quick fixes to car problems
Finding comfort in God's Word

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Colorful Monogram Door Decor

My soul is so ready for summer!  Warmer days.  The kids home from school.  Summer vacation.  I can't wait! 

Today I'm blogging over at A Wise Woman Once Said... with a tutorial on how I made this cute little monogram.

A touch of color on my front door to dress the house up for those lazy summer days ahead.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

A Spirit of Gratutude: May 14


Grand baby babbling away and ending with a laugh, as if he just told a hilarious joke!
Phone calls with my sister
Early morning workouts
Proverbs 3: 5-6 

Monday, May 13, 2013

Keeping Up The Motivation

I'm sure you're all eagerly awaiting an update on how I did with my goals for last week.  (No, I know you're not really - but let me have my little delusion, OK? Thanks)  So, here's an overview:
  • Drink more water eh... a few days I did really well, others - not so much.
  • Exercise at least 3 times  I'm not even sure how to judge this.  I only exercised 2 days; but on one of those days I worked out twice (am and pm)  So, I think I'm counting it as accomplished.
  • Walk a total of at least 5 miles Check!!
  • Get cards/packages in the mail  Um... no. Maybe this week.
  • Finish a craft project (and blog about it!)  Project completed.  Blog will be written and posted soon at A Wise Woman Once Said...
  • Have dinner as a family - at the table - every day except Thursday Was right on track with this - but then we had pizza in front of the TV on Friday.  And it sort of went downhill from there. 
 For this week, I'm feeling health conscious and keeping to that theme for my goals. Trying to keep up the motivation I'm feeling after having to buy some new pants this weekend because so many of my others keep sliding down and I'm too old to pull of the pants-riding-below-my-hips look (not that anyone can really successfully pull off that look)
  • Eat a healthy breakfast every morning (typing this as I finish a bowl of shredded wheat with banana, strawberries, and skim milk because I realized the leftover cheesecake in the fridge didn't really meet the "healthy" criteria)
  • Drink the recommended amount of water each day
  • Exercise at least 3 days this week
  • NO soft drinks!
  • Use neti pot before bed each night
  • Make an appointment for an eye exam

What Do You Do?

I saw this writing prompt on another blog recently and couldn't stop thinking about it:

"If you couldn't answer with your job, how would you answer the question, 'what do you do'?"

Maybe this was easier for me since I stopped answering this question with a description of my work away from home job about a year ago.  But it still made me think: what do I do?


... love my husband
... take care of my family
... like to read
... crochet
... write a blog
... love to hang clothes out on the line
... enjoy saving money and am always on the lookout for bargains
... babysit my grandson
... watch documentaries on Netflix
... make my own cleaning products
...  google everything
... do crafts for my home and to give as gifts

What do you do?

Sunday, May 12, 2013


I love lilacs.  I love the smell.  I love the colors.  I love how delicate and pretty they are.  

It makes me very happy each spring when my lilac bush blooms and I can bring a bunch in to decorate the dining room table.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

My Love Dare: Day 38

"Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart" ~ Psalm 37:4

Day 38: Love fulfills dreams

Giving your spouse everything he could ever desire is impractical and impossible.  But saying "No" to everything is just as bad.

Sometimes love needs to go all out.  To pull out all the stops and let go of the excuses.  Shower the beloved with their heart's desire.  Just for the sake of giving. More important than the giving is the spirit of the giving.  Wanting to fulfill every dream you possibly can.

To give like God gives.  God gives us mercy, grace, and eternal life.  Not because we deserve it or earned it - but because of His great love for us!

Dreams and desires come in many forms.  Maybe you can't afford that dream vacation or a shiny new sports car.  But you can give your spouse your time, attention, affection, and respect.  Let him see the love and respect you have for him.  Let him know he's your knight in shining armor (even if the dragon is a spider or the quest is to pick up milk on the way home).  He needs to know he's appreciated.

Surprise him with a small gift, or card, or an unexpected kiss.

  • Love calls you to listen to what your spouse is saying and hoping for
  • Love calls you to remember the things that are unique to your relationship: the pleasures and enjoyments that bring a smile to the others face
  • Love calls you to give when it would be more convenient to wait
  • Love calls you to daydream about those opportunities to give so often that their desires become your own
Exceed all your spouses expectations by showering him with expressions of love.  Be willing to express your heart with extravagance.  Overwhelm him with love and kindness.

Ask yourself: "What is something my spouse would really, really love?"  And commit to living out the answer!


OK.  Completely doable.  What would the Man of the House want if it was obtainable?  What would make him feel loved, valued, and respected?  I can do this!

Friday, May 10, 2013

A New Venture

I woke up with a sinus headache.  Which doesn't bode very well for the day ahead.  But I wasn't going to let a little pressure stop me.  I drank some coffee, read my Bible, took some decongestant, and headed to the computer. 

I had the brainstorm about a week or two ago to collaborate with my two sisters and the female offspring to launch a new blog! A few text messages, a conversation or two, a little brainstorming later - and  today is launch day!

A Wise Woman Once Said... is what happens when three clever sisters (and maybe a niece or two... or three...) get together to share the tips, tricks, and lessons we are learning along life's journey.  Here, you'll find a hodge-podge of recipes, crafts, decor, style, organization, greener living, and parenting.  With the possibility for just a random thought or two along tossed in for good measure.

I hope each of you will stop by to visit.  And to follow us!

A Spirit of Gratitude: May 10

Cat purring
Foggy mornings

Sorting shape blocks with the grand baby
A car window that works
My new nephew

Thursday, May 9, 2013

My Love Dare: Day 37

"If two of you agree on earth about anything that they may ask, it shall be done for them by my Father" ~ Matthew 18:19

Day 37: Love agrees in prayer

Praying together. It may seem so simple to you.  Or maybe it seems silly.  Or impossible.  But praying together is a key to a long marriage.  It unites husband and wife in a powerful way.

Prayer can:
  • give you wisdom when faced with difficult decisions
  • bring comfort when struggling through fears and insecurities
  • provide peace when having arguments or marital struggles
  • provide a place to seek shelter when you don't know where else to turn
  • remind you that God has made the two of you into one flesh
It's difficult to stay angry with someone while you hold their hand in prayer.  It draws the two of you together, face to face, on common grown.  It strengthens you.

And it is pleasing to God.


 I spoke to the Man of the House about sharing time in prayer each day.  We decided the best time would be as we go to bed each night.  And that it might take a little while to get comfortable with it and into a routine.  We did it exactly once so far.  That first night that we talked about it.  Remind me to bring it up again...

"In the morning my prayer comes before you" ~ Psalm 88:13

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Man Sized Expectations

"For the foolishness of God is wiser than man's wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than man's strength" ~ 1 Corinthians 1:25

The Bible tells us that all things are possible for God. But it can be so difficult to really wrap my head around that one.  To really believe that nothing is too big or impossible for Him to manage. Do I put man-sized restrictions on God?  Do I expect less of Him than He is really capable?

The simple answer is: Yes.Yes, I do.

But the truth is - God is bigger.  Bigger than our doubts.  Bigger than our fears.  Bigger than our weaknesses.  God is never going to let us down, disappoint us, or forsake us.  He is bigger than anything we can imagine.  His power goes beyond anything we can comprehend.

So, what ever it is you're expecting of God - think BIGGER!  Nothing is impossible for Him.

 "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us" ~ Ephesians 3:20

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Reaching My Goals

I have a list of weekly goals I am working to accomplish.  These goals are different from the good ol' weekly/daily To-Do list.  That includes chores I need to do, errands I need to run, and the like.  These goals are more personal things I want to accomplish over the course of the week.  Some are health/fitness related.  Some are for my family.  I'm feeling a need  to keep myself accountable, and in that effort I'd like to place my list of goals out there for the world to see. So, here they are: My Weekly Goals:

This Week I Will:
  • Drink more water
  • Exercise at least 3 times
  • Walk a total of at least 5 miles
  • Get cards/packages in the mail
  • Finish a craft project (and blog about it!)
  • Have dinner as a family - at the table - every day except Thursday

Monday, May 6, 2013

Swing State of Emotions

Yesterday was one completely topsy-turvy day!  I think I managed to experience almost every possible emotions in less than 24 hours.  It was a confusing and exhausting day.

It began when I got two messages within a few hours of each other.

The first was a text telling me that my middle sister had gone into labor and was at the hospital to deliver my first nephew!  There was a little nervousness for her since it was a little over 3 weeks early - but mainly there was excitement and joy.

The second came a few hours later.  It was my mother telling me she was driving to the hospital, but not the one where my sister was having her baby.   Her husband had been in a motorcycle accident and was being airlifted to the trauma center.  The nervousness, joy, and anticipation were washed over with worry and fear.  All I could think to do was just pray.  And put out a call to all the prayer warriors I know to do the same.

By the time Sunday came to a close, I had a beautiful new nephew.  6.1 pounds, 18 inches long.  Everyone is doing well.  He's so tiny and adorable; I just want to gobble him up!

Mother's husband was in ICU with broken ribs, hand, and ankle, collapsed lung and a lacerated spleen.  The big concern now is his heart rate and rhythm and bleeding from the spleen injury.  He has been on blood thinners for some time because of the heart issues which made the lacerated spleen a concern.  They were giving him something to thicken the blood to control bleeding, and having to monitor him closely as that treatment could aggravate the existing heart problems and put him at risk of a heart attack or stroke.

Through out the day, I wasn't sure how I felt.  How I was supposed to feel.  I was torn between the joy of a new life coming into the world and being concerned and afraid for Mom's husband. You've probably heard people talk about "emotional roller-coaster" -  I rode one all day long!

p.s. any and all prayers for mom's husband are welcome and appreciated!

My Love Dare: Day 36

"Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path" ~ Psalm 119:105

photo credit:

Day 36: Love is God's Word

God has not put us into the world - into this life - without a plan.  He has even provided us with an instruction book full of His word and His promises - the Bible.

In order for God's word to be helpful to us we have to commit to it.  Immerse ourselves in it.  And know it.

Be In It: Get into a daily habit of reading the Bible

Stay Under it:  By attending a church where the Word is faithfully preached and Bible study classes where it is taught and discussed you can come to a greater understanding of God's word and how it applies to your life.

Live It:  Allow the Bible to become part of who you are, how you live, how you think, and what you do.

When we live only according to our plans, our emotions, the opinions of there, etc - we are building on shaky ground.  As the trials of life shake us - everything will collapse around us.  When we are living by God's word - we have a strong, firm, unshakable foundation against destruction.

When you build your life and your marriage on the Bible, you will see it grow stronger and be solid against the storms.


I take some quiet time each morning to read a devotional or two and to spend some time in God's word. (I'm doing one of those "read the Bible in a year" plans).  I spoke with the Man of the House about the two of us maybe doing some sort of devotional or bible study together as well.  And I think we've decided on a book to look at for this purpose.

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Friday, May 3, 2013

My Love Dare: Day 35

"Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisors they succeed" ~ Proverbs 15:22

Day 35: Love is accountable

The marriage vows most of us took say  "good times and bad" and "sickness and health".

God means for use to face challenges together.  United as one.  Making each other stronger. Supporting each other.

It is equally important to build a network of strong, godly, healthy friendships that value marriage.All people need wise counsel at some point.  The wise seek it out and are grateful for it.  The foolish avoid and ignore it.

"The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, but a wise man is he who listens to counsel" ~ Proverbs 12:15

Wise counsel warns you against the danger of bad choices, encourages you during difficulties, and celebrates your marriage. You must avoid negative influences.  Those who encourage selfish choices.  Look for others who seek Christ.  Someone with the type of marriage you long for.  Someone who values and lives by the Word of God.


I have several women I consider friends who are godly Christ followers.  But I don't feel I have any really close friends like that.  No one I could sit down over coffee and pour out my heart.  Truth be told, I've become a bit of a loner as the years have gone by.  I spend most of my time with either the Man of the House or the female offspring. I think I need to do some praying for God to help me cultivate those kinds of friendships again in my life.  To give me the courage to reach out and open myself up to those friendships.  

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Why I Hate Spring

Ok... I don't really hate Spring. 

In fact, if questioned I would probably say that I love spring.  The flowers blooming, the trees budding out new leaves, the warmer weather that is not too hot yet.  Love it. 

However, I don't like the affect it has on my body.

The sneezing.  The sniffling.  The sinus pressure.  The red, watery, itchy eyes.  The dark, dark bags under those eyes.   The scratchy throat.  The way the roof of my mouth itches.  The coughing.  The wheezing. If there is any possible seasonal allergy symptom - I have it. 


This year is not looking good.  I'm already showing some strong allergy symptoms and it's only early May.  My symptoms don't usually peak until later in the month.

My usual allergy med cocktail - Claritin(in the am)  and Zyrtec(in the pm), along with a decongestant as needed - doesn't seem to be helping too much.  Which makes me nervous.  What's gonna happen when the pollens I am especially allergic to start flying?

If I could just seal myself off somehow until around the end of June, that would be great!  Maybe a giant ziploc bag or something?  One of those giant plastic bubbles like John Travolta used in the movie, or that kid in the Seinfeld episode!  Where can a person get one of those? Those suits they wear when dealing with hazardous materials? Although just spotting me at the store would probably completely freak a lot of people out.  Of course, the sight of me with my red, runny eyes, red drippy nose and black eyes might all ready be doing that. 

I'm adding the neti pot to the routine today.  And crossing my fingers that this helps immensely. 

But I'm not ruling out those other options.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

God With Us

God promises again and again - He will always be with us.

He will give us strength and courage.
"Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid; don't be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go" ~  Joshua 1:9

He will tell us what to say and help us say it.
"Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say." ~ Exodus 4:12

He will teach us.
"I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;  I will counsel you with my loving eye on you" ~ Psalm 32:8

He will provide for us.
"And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus." ~ Philippians 4:19

He will never leave us.
"No one will be able to stand against you all the days of your life.  As I was with Moses, so I will be with you, I will never leave you or forsake you" ~ Joshua 1:5

He will protect us.
"The Lord is my light and my salvation - whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life - 
of whom shall I be afraid?"  ~ Psalm 27: 1

He will always be there.  When friends leave us.  When family can't be nearby.  God is always there.


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