Thursday, April 30, 2009

Dave Ramsey Envelope System

As I sit here right now, looking at the budget and the paycheck deposited in the bank, I am thankful for Dave Ramsey's Envelope System.

It makes paying cash for everything so simple and I am joyous when all the envelopes are full.

We are trying to become debt free using the DR Total Money Makeover. It has been a humbling and at times fun journey, but sometimes it just feels hard.

We are learning the art of watching our money and where it goes. We did horrible the month of April. I was not very budget conscious in lots that I did. But I am excited that tomorrow is May and a new month to try again is here. I am so glad that I have a Heavenly father to remind me where money should go and that I can come to with questions regarding me money. The Bible has so many verses in it about money.

1 Timothy 6:10
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

Proverbs 22:7
The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.

These are just a few verses about money. The verses that I love are the ones were God tells us it's alright to screw up, everyone does but with His grace all things are possible!

Matthew 19:26
Jesus looked at them intently and said, "For humans this is impossible, but for God all things are possible."

So if you are trying to get out of debt- look into Dave Ramsey's program and grab your Bible. Those will be the best paying off debt tools you can find!

For more Things I love Thursday head over to Diaper Diaries.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Where Have I Been?!?

Where Have I Been? That is a great question! I have been here and there and EVERYWHERE!

I have been trying to start a new diet and that ended up going bad. I started the Maker's Diet and the doctors who recommended it failed to look at all my other health issues and it ended up getting ugly. It has now ended up with a hurt foot from getting dizzy in the bath tub. This was the first of many hurts and feel bads so needless to say the diet has gone capote!

In comes my newest passion, Sunday my aunt called me and told me that a lady in our church was really into natural products and nutrition. Her name is Donna. I have been going to church all my life and have never really talked to Donna. My aunt told me to call her and chat with her about my ongoing health problems. I gave her a call and we hit it off!

So Tuesday she came over and told me about some products she sells and I was hooked! So now I am so into Shaklee products! So I am going to begin the Shaklee Cinch Inch program. It cost some many but after just trying a few of the products, I felt like a whole new person. So I am now a "member" and people can buy things through me! Isn't that exciting? So if you are interested in any natural products let me know. I will hook you up! So there is one place I have been.

Also, I have been out at the farm planting my garden. I have already put a ton of work into it and I am hoping that I will reap the benefits! A couple from church backed out of using their plot, so my grandparents doubled mine! I am so psyched!

So stay tuned for more updates! Have a blessed Thursday!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Menu Plan April 27- May 3

First week on the Maker's Diet... Woohooo! Here is the conversation I'm having with myself:

Self ... You are really starting to worry me. You are actually excited about starting this diet! I cannot believe you... You don't even like any of those things very much.

You see I feel kind of like a kid. I have rules. I will find discipline and self-control. I will persevere- not only because I know with God's help I can but also because everyone is telling me I'm crazy and cannot do it... What does that make me want to do? Make them all look silly and wrong!

So here is my menu plan for dinners only. As I get the hang of this diet, I will add other meals and snacks.

Monday: Chicken Salad, greens, carrots, and strawberries
Tuesday: Garlic Pepper Steak and broccoli
Wednesday: Split Chicken Breasts grilled and green beans
Thursday: Egg Omelets and Turkey Bacon
Friday: Chicken-in-a-skillet
Saturday: Grilled Fish, Green beans, and Carrots
Sunday: Beef Stew

Happy Menu Planning! For more menu plans head on over to Organized Junkie.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I'm Back....

I'm back from a lovely weekend at Women of Faith. There were so many great speakers and messages that hit right where the the Lord wanted. It was incredible. Though, I am sure that I drove my mother and aunt nuts because I couldn't stand being away from my boys. Look up the words home-body in the dictionary and there is a big ol' picture of me right next to the definition.

I had an incredible time and I just love Mandisa! Anyway I am exhausted and headed to bed. There will be more pictures later once I get them from my mom's camera but here is a quick couple to show you the amount of Daughters that attended this event.
This is the line as we waited to get in... Early!!
Sorry-- Someone (of course not perfect little me) took a bad, blurry picture. More women!

All the women behind me!

Women waiting to get in an hour after it had started! Amen!!!

To find a Women of Faith Conference in your area click here!

Hope y'all have a blessed date with our Savior tomorrow as we head to His home and worship and praise His Almighty, All Powerful name!

Friday, April 24, 2009

A Grand New Day

This afternoon I am leaving for a Women of Faith conference. I am so excited but so nervous! I really cannot wait to get there and worship and praise with other beautiful women, but on the other hand I haven't been away from my boys.

My aunt and I are leaving early and heading out to eat and then a quick trip to Dave and Busters. She is such a good friend and always knows just what I need. We are then headed to shop and straight to Nationwide area.

I am really excited about hearing Steven Curtis Chapman speak. He and his family are definitely quite an inspiration.

So be in prayer for the conference and be prepared for some photos when I get back! :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

It's About That Time of Year!

It is about that time of year again!!

What time of year you ask?!? I am so glad you asked because I just cannot wait to tell you!

It's Garage Sale time! I love garage sales, having them and going to them.

The tricks to having a great garage sale:
  1. Incredible pricing- For me having a garage sale is not only about making money but about getting things out of my house. I would like to make a little money but I REALLY don't want to take those things back in my house. So for kids clothes I always price them 25 cents/piece or 5 for $1. It is a huge hit and there are actually people who look for my sale year after year.
  2. Great Signs- My husband always makes great signs. Balloons help too.
  3. Having your big and interesting items outside for all to see. You want the those items to catch people's eyes as they are driving by.
  4. Smiles... People like to buy from kind people who smile and make them feel welcome.
Tricks to not spending too much money going to garage sales:
  1. Give your kids a set amount of money for the whole garage sale day. My oldest son get 50 cents to buy something that he and I agree on. After that money is he's done buying.
  2. Go with a list. If you just shop for things that may have a place in your home then you will be over run with clutter and spend money you did not need to spend.
  3. Take a van and go with a couple other families. Save gas money!
Garage sales can be a great source to find things in which your family needs at a great price. They key is that you shop smart and stick to your budget.

For more frugal tips head on over to Life As Mom.

He Just Wants Me to Be Proud

So today I figured something out for the hundredth time. My 4yo son, Dylan, just wants to make me happy and proud.

I have been having some health issues that leave me overwhelmed, tired, and might I say... a tad bit edgy. I really have not meant to but I have been snapping at the kids (and I guess I should admit, my wonderful husband) a lot more than I should be. I have really felt terrible about it.

So today as we are rushing around trying to get to the car for school (I am so glad to be homeschooling next year!), he drops his cereal all over the floor (I know, he should be having a more healthy beginning to the day than over processed, sugary cereal which has who knows what all in it..).

I feel my anger beginning to come up. I know it is so pathetic that I would get upset over that but these silly raging hormones are taking over. Instead of snapping at him, I just told him that it was okay and asked that he be more careful next time. With that, I walked into the other room to get book bags and all the things that pack mules, I mean moms, have to put in the car to go anywhere.

When I came back into the foyer, Dylan was yelling at me to come and look. He had picked up all the cereal and was just so excited to show me.

He looked up at me with those beautiful brown eyes and said, " I did it all myself, Mama. You didn't have to ask. I just wanted to make you happy."

Now friends, if I would have snapped at him like I had felt like at first, I would have missed out on that beautiful moment where my sweet little boy (who is getting way too big too quick) just wanted to make me smile. He did more than that, he made my heart swell with happiness.

Don't miss out on all of those beautiful moments with your children because you are too high-strung, stressed, or busy to keep your anger and frustration at bay.

A Quick Little Recipe

Do you ever look at the clock and it's 4:30 and your husband is going to be home for dinner in at 5? Or Church is in an hour and you haven't fed your family yet? Well here is a recipe for you!

Penne Pasta Bake

You take one box penne pasta, a jar of Ragu Garden Vegetable, and a bag of cheese. Throw it all together and bake it at 350 degrees for 35 mins.

It is so simple and so yummy! It is something you can put together and just have your kids or your husband throw in the oven.

This weekend I will be going to Women of Faith and I want to leave my family with something easy to make so they will not have to go out to eat, eat cereal or hotdogs, or beg off family... So when you are in a hurry go ahead and give this a try!

For more recipes head on over to Life As Mom.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


As Andy and I are really, truly beginning the Maker's Diet next Monday, I am extremely nervous. If there is one flaw that I will be the first to admit I have have is a lack of self-control. So I am holding onto the Word of God to help me through this battle with PCOS and the diet that is proclaimed to be the best nutrition for me. So here are some Bible verses that I want to keep in mind:

  • Proverbs 25:28 - "Like a city whose walls are broken down is a man who lacks self-control."
  • Proverbs 1:2 - "for attaining wisdom and discipline; for understanding words of insight; for acquiring a disciplined and prudent life, doing what is right and just and fair..."
  • 2 Timothy 1:7 - "For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind."(sound mind is translated to discipline and self control)
  • Ephesians 6:13 - "Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand."
  • Philippians 4:13 - "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."
  • Psalm 28:7 -"The Lord is my strength and my shield ..."
  • Psalm 138:3 -"In the day when I cried out, You answered me, and made me bold with strength in my soul."
  • Psalm 68:35 -"O God, You are more awesome than Your holy places. The God of Israel is He who gives strength and power to His people."
  • Isaiah 40:29 -"He gives power to the weak, and to those who have no might He increases strength."
  • Proverbs 3:26 -"For the Lord will be your confidence, and will keep your foot from being caught."

So there are some verses to keep our minds on the foods I should be eating and the power that the Almighty will give me.

Seeds to Starters...

In lieu of Earth Day, I am posting about starting a garden. Now if I have to be completely honest I will tell you that this is the first year this has ever worked for me, BUT it did.

I decided this year to be frugal and began my tomato, pepper, broccoli, and herb starts from seed. I have tried this is the past and it was a very daunting task. This year I came up with a better way to go about this. I started all my plants in egg cartons. The spaces were just big enough to allow slow and proper growth. I then transplanted them into over sized Dixie Cups. Instead of over watering them, I used a spray bottle and misted them every morning and evening.

I am so excited about how well the plants turned out. So using egg cartons not only made my plants grow well, but it also reused an item that most people just through away! (Yes, I am patting myself on the back right now... ;) )

Here are the first tomato plants to pop up in the egg carton.

Here is one of my two tables of starts.

My PLANTS now.

All my jars just sitting ready to have yummy home-grown fruits and veggies in them!

Our garden before anything was planted... Now everything is in the ground! YIPPEE!

So for those of you who are unsure how to begin a garden but know it is something you want to do. My tip for you would be to start your seeds in egg cartons! Happy gardening!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Monday Morning Musings..

We had an incredible Easter! It is by far my favorite day of the year. We all got up, put on our Easter best, and went downstairs to find what the bunny had left for us. It was so fun to see Dylan's eyes light up. He is at such a fun age. We then got some breakfast and went to the early (8:30!) service at church. There were not a huge amount of people there but the atmosphere was incredible. I was teary eyed the whole service. The fact that someone loves me as much as Jesus just totally overwhelms me. After church we came home and begin preparations for my family to come to our home for our Easter celebration. It was nice to have everyone here. Lincoln got his nap and we didn't have to wake him. That made for a happy baby, therefore a more happy mama. After here we went to my parent's for the BIG egg hunt. It was too cute. Too much candy and junk, but too cute! After that we stopped by Andy's grandma's for a while and then came home to relax. It was nice.

One of the best things that has happened in the past week that has nothing to do with Easter preparations, but everything to do with God, is the renewing of my marriage the way that God wants it. It hit me that everything is not about me and my marriage will not be complete without God's direction. After falling to my knees and giving it to Him, everything is falling into place. It is truly incredible. I will not lie and tell you I am always the most willing or patient wife because that is truly not the case, but I feel more loving and devoted and sacrificial. It is a great feeling. I really now understand when people say that you get more out of giving. With that, our communication has improved. I was able to open up and now it feels like we are on the same page. It has truly been a blessing!

Now today I am beginning the Maker's Diet. I am extremely nervous. I am a picky eater and the things on this diet are not usually something I would pick! I am relying on God to bring me discipline and peace of mind. I am also sort of weirdly excited. This morning I woke up in pain because of the horrible things I had eaten yesterday. I am hoping this is a turning point for my body. What is 40 days for God out of my life? Hardly anything!! So please leave encouragement or even prayers to bring me through this sacrificial time!

Hope every one's week is blessed!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

The Beginning of the Maker's Diet/ Menu Plan 4-13 through 4-19

So I am attempted the Maker's Diet... It is my last hope at not being overweight forever! So here is our menu plan for the first seven days of phase one on the Maker's Diet.

Monday, April 13
Green Beans
Steak and Steamed Brocolli

Tuesday, April 14
Vegetable Frittata
Green Beans
Grilled Chicken with salad greens

Wednesday, April 15
Fried Eggs
Chicken Salad with carrot sticks
Grilled Fish and steamed brocolli and carrots

Thursday, April 16
Partial Day Fast
Partial Day Fast
Oriental Red Meat Salad

Friday, April 17
Easy Egg Scramble
Coconut Milk Soup
Family Roast Beef with carrots

Saturday, April 18
BBQ Grilled Chicken with asparagus

Sunday, April 19
Vegetable Fritatta
Chicken Salad with celery and carrots

Okay friends- please be in prayer for me these next 40 days. This is totally not my excited eating! Please pray for my self-discipline and guidance from the Lord.

For more menus head over to Organized Junkie!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Our Price Was Paid

This is a bitter sweet year when it comes to Easter. This is the first year that I have really studied it and tried to teach someone else about this amazing season. My son has been a delight - I have loved every minute of sharing the Easter Story with him. That is the sweet part. The bitter part is realizing just how much of a sacrifice not only Jesus, but God and Mary (Jesus mother) gave on my behalf.

I am not going to lead people on by saying that I have always been the kind of person that God calls us to be. Therefore, today I feel so blessed that someone loved me so much to send His only son for me AND Jesus loved me so much that He fulfilled God's plan.

This week as I have told my son of the Easter story, I have been deeply thinking about just how much Mary sacrificed for me without even knowing it. She started as an unwed mother and ended up watching her Son carrying all the World's sin on his back on a Cross. Would anyone of us especially me be willing to give up one of their children?

So as I sat here and write this post to you- a song is playing in my mind. An old hymn that isn't sang very much but the words are oh so powerful.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Preparing for Easter

Today I begin teaching my 3 yo about the Easter story. I was so blessed by his innocence, love of the Lord, and eagerness to learn. Here are some adorable pictures of what we did!

Coloring pictures of the Easter Story while I talked about each one.
Hosanna! Hosanna!

I am praying blessings for each and everyone of you this Easter. We are truly blessed and loved to have such an incredible Savior that died on Calvary to take away all our sins!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Menu Plan Monday April 6-12 and an Update

Have y'all noticed that I haven't posted in a long time? I could say that I was doing a lot of educational things with the boys or I could say that I have been cleaning out the house but those would both be lies. The truth is that I got addicted to Twilight and I have really been a downer this week.

Like I said I got addicted to Twilight. Andy and I watched the movie last Saturday and I LOVED it! So I got the books from my SIL and jumped in to read them. I read the four books in 3 days. I did feed my children, but that is about it!

Now to the downer part... For those of you who know me or have read my blog know that I was sexually assaulted, it resulted in my first son (I would have it no other way! He is my blessing.). Anyway, a girl in our church youth group was raped at SCHOOL! When something like that happens to you, when you know of has this happening to someone you know, it opens up your wound all over again. It was gut-wrenching! It brought up tons of repressed feelings and I felt each one all over again. I pray that if that God is going to use me in this area, that he make me stronger. So that is the main reason for the downer week.

AND my baby turned 1 year old today!

So here is my menu plan for this week:

Monday: BBQ Chicken Pizza
Tuesday: Tex Mex Tacos
Wednesday: Chicken Alfredo
Thursday: Pork Chops, Rice, and Green Beans
Friday: Dinner with my ILs and then going to an Easter Cantata
Saturday: Breakfast for Lunch and then Leftovers for Dinner
Sunday: Easter Dinner

Happy Holy Week! We are a blessed people who have a Savior who died on a cross and rose again for us!

For more menu plans, head on over to Organized Junkie.