Sunday, August 29, 2010

MPM: #3 and An Outlook for the Week

This is the last week before school starts for Dylan. I am hoping this is a week where I can get a lot done and good "end of the summer" memories can be made. Here is the menu plan and a "wish list" of things to get done around the humble abode. I am only going to be listing what we will be having for dinner because when I try to get a lot accomplished, I tend to just grab and throw together. I don't think that "grab and throw together" on a menu plan really helps... :)

Sloppy Joes, oven fries, green beans

Chicken quesadillas, chips, salsa


Slow cooker cream cheese chicken, noodles, broccoli


Potato soup and sandwiches

*For more menu plans- Organized Junkie is the place to find them!*

So as I said above, this is a week that I really want to get things together. I feel like the beginning of a school year is the beginning of the year, not January 1st. I don't know why, the school year just brings I new schedule, slate and routine. Just call me crazy...

We have worked really hard around here and have gotten our house cleaned out, taken the clutter to Goodwill and now we just need to maintain. Maintain... That would be the issue. I am not a good maintainer.. So this week around my home is dedicated to maintaining and getting things back in order around here.

Shouldn't be too hard... Just. Need. To. Find. The. Energy... That is the difficult issue....

How about you? What does your week have in store? What is going to be on your dinner table?! Whatever it is or your week brings, I praying that it is blessed!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Why I Think It's Cool to Obey the Limits, Even When I Get Evil Looks

I used to be "heck on wheels" and "drive like a bat outta heck" but I have changed my driving ways.

Since I am a 25 year old, mother of almost three, wife, soccer mom and mini van driver- all things I vowed I would NEVER be- I thought I'd throw people's opinions to the wind.

Here is a list of why I think driving the speed limit is cool regardless of what other's (mainly other drivers on the road with me) think:
  • Your car will get better gas mileage. Therefore, you will save money on gas!
  • You are more able to pay attention and view what others around you are doing.
  • Driving faster gives you less time to react to those in front of you, if something darts in front of you, etc.
  • I full more in control and less "road ragey".
  • You will avoid accidents and tickets. This saves a ton of headache, sanity and $$!
These are just a few examples of why driving slow saves me and my sanity money.

Here are a few more ways to save money on your car:
  • As above says, drive slower.
  • Try to avoid breaking quickly.
  • Properly maintain cars according to manufacturers recommendations.
  • Combine errands and other running around duties.
  • "Lighten the Load" - Take things out of your car and trunk. That extra stuff is holding you and your $$ back.
Those are just a few ways I can think of to save money on your car. Do you have any good tips or ideas? If so, share in the comments. I would love to hear!

This post is linked to Frugal Fridays over at Life As Mom.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

What Blogging Means to Me

What does Blogging mean to you?

I wish I could express how much sharing with all of you means to me. I have missed writing and being a part of your lives.

I was reading through a blog that I read daily and she was talking about beginning a writing schedule.

I really like this idea and I am thinking about trying to put one in place. The schedule I am looking at trying is this:
* Monday- From around the house. This will include menu plans, weekly plans and happenings from around our home.
* Tuesday- I love taking part in Gratituesday and will continue to do so.
* Wednesday- As you all know, we are slowly (slow and steady wins the race) migrating towards natural, organic living. I will write about an area we are working on and how that is going/went.
*Thursday- The Simple Living series
*Friday- Financial Fridays: We, along with most others, are trying to reach financial freedom and be good stewards with the resources God has given us. I will focus on this topic on Fridays.

If I post on the weekends, which is not likely, they will be about random topics.

Please be patient as I try to implement this new schedule and please remember that life happens. I am a very pregnant wife and mother of two young children and things come up unexpectedly.

I cannot wait to begin this new journey!
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What is Simple? What is Living a Simple Life?

Simple living... What is simple living?

I believe that simple living is an individual thing. For one person, simple living is not wearing make-up and to another it is wearing make-up. It's all individual...

One thing I know for sure though is that we are grasping for simple and simple life. We are exhausted with the fast pace, always cluttered, always running and never having any time for ourselves kind of life. We are tired, over worked, and under paid. We are at our wits end!

Well I can say that is true for my husband and I. We are tired. We are worn down. We are ready for change.

Next week I am going to get more in depth on what the definition of simple is and how it relates or does not relate to our life. This week, though, I want us to spend some time doing an inventory and trying to find what simple living means for us and our lives and families.

I would love it if you would share simplicity of your life in your view. I will begin...

When I think of a simple life for my family and me, it:
  • has a simple and committed faith and relationship with the Lord.
  • has a close knit family that loves to do "simple" things in life such as playing a game.
  • isn't so hard to submit to my husband and we spend time doing things together such as planting a garden or taking a walk down a country road.
  • has NO debt.
  • involves us gardening and being self-sustaining.
  • involves us spending more time together and less money.
  • involves us doing less silly things and spending time doing more important.
I am sure there are many more but those are ones that stand out to me right this very second. How about you? What do you see as simple in your future or even the way you are migrating now?

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

How Harsh is YOUR Toothpaste?

Do you have any idea just how harsh toothpaste is?

In my quest to find the best natural products for my family, I have found out JUST how harsh my toothpaste was.

Do you think it's kind of scary all the bleaching and whitening products out there? I had never really thought of it but decided to begin researching the ingredients in toothpaste.

Many toothpaste and mouth cleaning agents contain very harmful ingredients that get into your blood stream and can build up and even destroy your liver, kidneys, heart, lungs and tissues.

According to OraMD, here are just a few ingredients used in the leading toothpaste that can be dangerous:

  • Hydrated silica is made from a crystallized compound found in quartz, sand, and flint and is primarily used as an abrasive in toothpaste.
  • Sorbitol and sodium saccharin are both sweeteners and used as carriers and sweeteners in toothpaste.
  • Titanium dioxide is a pigment used for providing brightness and whiteness to such products as paint, plastics, paper, inks, fibers, food, and cosmetics; and is used as a stain remover/whitener in toothpaste.
  • Glycerin is a syrupy, sweet, colorless or yellowish liquid obtained from fats and oils and used as a solvent, antifreeze, plasticizer, and sweetener in the manufacture of dynamite, cosmetics, liquid soaps, inks, and lubricants. Glycerin prevents toothpaste from drying out and helps maintain product consistency.
  • Sodium lauryl sulfate (SLS) is a powerful surfactant (wetting agents) and detergent. It has industrial and cosmetic uses and is used around the world in clinically studies as a skin irritant. The molecule is small enough to penetrate the skin and can enter the blood stream being carried to every organ of the body. SLS is used in toothpaste as a foaming and cleansing agent.
  • Sodium fluoride is a colorless crystalline salt used in fluoridation of water, in treatment of tooth decay, and as an insecticide and disinfectant. Sodium fluoride is used in toothpaste to harden the enamel of the teeth to prevent tooth decay. (Sodium fluoride is also one of the main ingredients in rat poison.)
After researching toothpaste, I decided that I wanted to go to a more natural and organic type of toothpaste. I was then faced with the dilemma of what to do with all the extra toothpaste from around the house.

I can now tell you that without a doubt in my mind, toothpaste is extremely harsh. My mother-in-law recommended using it to clean. There were some hard water stains in our shower grout which the professional cleaners could not get out when we moved in. I had tried EVERY other shower cleaner out there.

So... Why not try the toothpaste?

In seconds, my grout was bleached back to white. Andy came home and couldn't believe it. He didn't even know the grout was that color!

With all the harsh cleaners I had used, CLR and KaBoom was just a couple, the toothpaste that I was putting in my child's mouth cleaned it off in seconds!

Don't believe me? Try it with your toothpaste. You will be amazed!!

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Simple Life

I hear many, many moms asking how they can achieve a more simple life. Less stress, less mess and a little more simplicity...

Do you believe a more simple life is achievable? Or do you believe that the fast pace of this world is just inevitable?

For the past few weeks and looking forward to a season of more babies in our home, my husband and I have been searching and even yearning for a slower paced, more simple life...

Over the next few weeks, I want to take a look at how we can simplify our lives as women, mothers, wives and most of all, servants of an awesome amazing Lord.

So, therefore... Drum roll please..... I would like to announce my official jump back into my little corner of the web universe with a new series -

This series will discuss many areas in our lives as women and mothers. I will discuss how my family and I have simplified these areas and how we can do better.

Some future topics include:
* What is simple? What is a simple life?
* Why is Webster so mean? Simple vs. Plain
* Is it a ridiculous notion that we can get back to the basics?
* A simple faith - Searching for and Serving God with a child- like faith
* A simple wife - Is simply submitting to our husbands unheard of?
* A simple mother - What is REALLY important to plant in those little minds?
* A simple home - What NO TV?!
* Simply Clean - I need to smell the bleach and the White Glove test!
* Simply Cook - But I ordered a five course meal!
* A Simple Diet - Bring on the McHeartAttack!

I hope that you will join my each Thursday for a look at the Simple Life! Now y'all just simply must come back! :)
I feel so blessed to be starting this series and for the Lord opening my heart and my eyes to this series. I hope you enjoy it. For more blessings and thanksgiving - Heavenly Homemakers is the place to look!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

MPM: #2

We have had a week and weekend of getting things done around here. I cannot wait to share with you later in the week. Stop by and take a gander!

Sunday, August 22, 2010
Yogurt, fruit

Monday, August 23, 2010
Yogurt, fruit, granola
Macaroni and cheese, carrot sticks, dip
Chicken salad sandwiches, oven baked cheese fries

Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Creamy orange coolers, fruit, toast
RR chicken salad sandwiches, green beans, grapes
Tex mex dip, salsa, refried beans

Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Applesauce bread, yogurt, fruit
Grilled cheese, carrot sticks, fruit

Thursday, August 26, 2010
Kefir smoothies, toast
Spaghetti, salad, garlic bread

Friday, August 27, 2010
Boy's choice (where boys can pick from any of the breakfasts from the week)
Quesadillas, salsa, chips
Sloppy cornbread, peas, salad and carrot sticks

Saturday, August 28, 2010
(I am actually, honestly going to make this this week!!) Egg burrito casserole and fried cinnamon apples
Baked potatoes, cheese and broccoli sauce
Steaks on the grill, potatoes and green beans, salad

Monday, August 9, 2010

GratiTuesday - Miracles

Remember his marvellous works that he hath done, his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth..
 1 Chronicles 16:12

Do y'all know that we serve a Lord that is still in the miracle business?

What? Y'all need a good example?!? I am so glad you asked!!

As y'all know, my little bun in the oven is a little over half-baked. Well about 11 weeks ago, it was one of those mornings- you know the one where if y'all can just get down the stairs and stuff breakfast in the kids mouth, the morning might be okay? Well it was one of those mornings...

I had just walked out of my bedroom and Lincoln was screaming, wanting carried down the stairs. Dylan was already downstairs. I scooped up Lincoln, all the while hearing a voice in my head say.. "Don't do it!".

I was down to the second step and felt it... there was some kind of rolly (like my BIG words) toy (car, tractor, etc.) under my foot. That's when I felt myself fly backward.

For those of you that have not seen my home... I am going to attempt to "draw" how my stairs are...

Okay... So that's not really a good "drawing" but I hope you get the idea... Our stairs go down (about 7 stairs) one way and down the opposite way (about 7 stairs). I slipped on the top 2nd down step. (I really hope that makes sense!)

After falling down the top flight of stairs, I felt myself hit the wall with so much force that it flipped me down the next flight. At that point, I realized I had dropped Lincoln. I freaked out! I started twisting and turning and screaming down the final set. That was NOT a good thing!

I found myself at the bottom of the stairs, unable to move. I couldn't find Lincoln, but Dylan was quickly at my side. I ordered Dylan to bring me the phone and find Lincoln. He did both without a word of backtalk (that my friends is a miracle right there!). I quickly called Andy, who works 40 minutes away and Dylan came to tell me that Lincoln was okay.

As I got off the phone with Andy, I realized that I was sitting in a puddle of fluid. Talk about freaking out!

I quickly dialed my doctor who informed me that the worst might possibly have just  happened. (Now for some of you IRL friends. I know you don't like my doctor, I just had to add that info... ) She informed to that I was to come straight to her office and not go to the hospital. In the meantime, Andy had called my father-in-law and he had shown up, found Lincoln was fine and was looking at me as if saying, no pleading.. "please, please don't ask me to come near you... ". It's actually quite funny now but at the time, it was horrible.

When the call with the doctor ended, I have NEVER heard such a sound as came from my heart. It was a sound of anger, sadness, heart-breaking urging and yearning with God. It scared me. I didn't know where it came from...

Andy finally came in and loaded me in the car. As we drove to the doctor, I can't even begin to tell you the bargains I began making with God. Praying that he would spare the little life inside of me. BEGGING!

After checking and an ultrasound, it was deemed a miracle by me. My doctor, not so much. She had some crazy scientific "maybe" explanation.

Now... Did I pee myself? Did I break something? It's all speculation. Right now the doctor is saying that I had an extra sac of water that ruptured...

Want to know how I feel? The Lord was with me. He saved my life, Lincoln's life and my unborn son's life.

TO GOD BE THE GLORY! I don't need science to explain because I know my Heavenly Father is still today, this very day in the miracle business...

Sunday, August 8, 2010

MPM: #1

I kind of feel like this is a brand new start to my blog. I feel as if I've been gone so long, we should re-introduce! Goodness...

This pregnancy is really got me exhausted. My heart goes to those who have multiple young children during pregnancies. This time around, I have not been able to cook or eat. Any time I see raw meat, I start barfing. It's ugly, yucky, horrible... So here is my menu plan in hopes that it helps me husband know what he's coming home to make! :) Love you, hunny!!

toast, eggs
Italian sausage in marinara sauce, pasta

baked oatmeal
grilled shrimp, baked potatoes, corn on the cob

cinnamon toast
roast, potatoes, carrots and gravy

white chicken chili, cornbread

toast, eggs
Tex Mex dip (I will be adding pictures as I make this! It is delicious!!!)

applesauce bread, fruit
chicken noodles, mashed potatoes, green beans


For more great menu ideas click here!

I'm Alive!!!

So... You know it's been way too long when people start deleting you off their blog that they read you! Goodness... Well here I am again... Seems like I am barely hanging on but I am here... 22 weeks pregnant and all!!

Anyone wanna take a guess at what the gender is? I'm going to give you a huge hint! I apparently can only have one type! :)

That's right! Welcome baby boy #3 in December! Now I have got to be completely honest with y'all, we are having an extremely hard time coming up with a boys name. I have some, well, rules about naming....
  1. The first name has to end in "n"... Dylan, Lincoln... etc... I come from a family of ALL "J" beginning names and while it seems like a good idea, it wasn't. If anyone looks our way (or we think they are) and says a word that begins with "J", we answer!
  2. There has to be a family name in there somewhere. I want family legacy to continue.
  3. It can't start with an already used letter in our little family unit. So... No "J", "A", "D" or "L".
I know... I'm a bit crazy! :)

Well this was just a quick "checking in" post. I am really hoping to get back on the blogging wagon. It's amazing how much I enjoy and need it, yet it always seems to take a back burner to everything else around here. But it's important to me that y'all know that I miss you and PUT me back on your lists! (wink!)

Know any good boy names that follow my rules? Feel free to leave them!