Wednesday, October 28, 2009

'lil pumpkins

Featuring new pumpkin clips from Bands-n-Bows, now conveniently located 3 blocks from my house!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Happy Birthday Addison Rose!


Today my third child turned two. Now, I don't have two one year olds'; only one one year old, one two year old, one 6 year old and one 7 year old. Can you believe how much she has changed in two short years? Nuts.

Ridiculously blessed, I am.

Not one of us threw up today. That's how we celebrated. We may have actually kicked the flu thing that started here on Thursday. Since then, one of us has been sick everyday. We should be done now, unless it wants to surprise us with round two :) Crazier things have happened.

The birthday month is coming to a close. Only one niece on the 29th and then the bestest roomie ever on the 31st left to wish happy birthday to. In November I am turning 35 and my sensitive and caring husband said, "you may as well be 4o". He is so funny, isn't he? He thinks he is ;)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Cleaning up



Don't they look a little like the Lollipop kids from The Wizard of Oz? Throw on some striped socks and a green velvet jacket and they could be the lollipop kids, "we represent..."


Thursday, October 22, 2009

It's me again, frugal momma.

It's been awhile since I posted any frugal (cheap) ideas and with the holidays coming up I thought I would just let everyone know about some new things I have been trying.

SWAGBUCKS I do most of my shopping online. It's normal for me to do several searches and research for the best prices. My sister told me about this new site that gives you 'bucks' for searching. It's called swagbucks and if you search through their site you can earn 'bucks' to purchase prizes, products, gift cards, etc.

Search & Win

At first I didn't know what to do, but now instead of using google I use swagbucks and I have already earned 2 amazon gift cards in less than a month!

So, if you use the Internet anyway, try swagbucks and get prizes for doing what you do normally!

HIPPOPOST I love getting mail. I found this really cool site called Hippopost that will let you upload a photo and send a message with it on a postcard for FREE. You can send several free EVERYDAY! Just log in at to get started. I sent several the other night in just a few minutes. I know your friends and family will love getting mail. They sell advertising to pay for your card so there will be a small advertisement on the card, just so you know, but I got to pick from a couple of different ads when I sent mine.

EBATES Don't forget to use ebates for all your purchases. After you search with swagbucks to find the best deals, log into your ebates account to get cash back for online purchases at over 1000 stores. I have over $30 in cash coming this month. WAHOO! Read this post for more information on ebates.

ALICE Don't forget about Who can pass up items you need delivered to your door for cheaper than you can get them at Walmart? Let me think, no 25 mile drive, no strapping kids in car seats, no pushing a germ infested cart through crowds of coughing, snotty people, no waiting in line at the checkout, no telling your kids don't touch, put it back...I think I'll stick with Shop the best deals tab to get the cheapest prices on their products. They have everything from coffee to diapers. All orders have FREE SHIPPING and everyone of my orders have been here within 3 days.

I gotta be honest. I hate shopping brick and mortar stores now, yep even the thrift stores are losing their sparkle. I LOVE the convenience of shopping online and getting great deals. If you need to purchase something or want some help using one of these sites. Just call me or email me and I would love to show you how. My husband just about purchased a new battery for his cell phone for $29 this morning. I almost fainted. In 6 minutes I found the EXACT one, brand new, online for 2.99 with 1.99 shipping. The company is reputable and has a good reputation and positive reviews. It's already in the mail, I got the shipping status update from the USPS.

Happy Shopping!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Generations of dirt piles.

This morning (no judgements please) I swept up the remnants of the party yesterday. As I scooted it into a neat little pile, tears welled up in my eyes. I saw bits and pieces of a wonderful day. It was so pretty with blue bits of moon sand, orange pieces of play dough, glitter and stickers, tissue paper and ribbon and cheerios. The thought of taking a photo crossed my mind, I should have. You all already think I am quite nuts.

I don't appreciate my dirt piles, nearly enough. These four kids and this life are making me realize what a blessing really is. Yesterday we were able to spend the whole day with family and friends visiting and celebrating the girls' birthdays. This is something we should do more often. It was so wonderful to see them. Having a big family makes it difficult to spend time together. We are all so busy and rarely have the same days available. It is such a blessing to be able to get together, whatever the occasion.

My first thought is to thank my mom and my in-laws for creating such families. I spend all this time in my little bubble and I forget about the family as a whole. My parents are amazing people. I can only hope that I will be such a mother as my mom and my mother in law. I was visiting with my sister yesterday about how when you see a 'good' kid you know that they must have had amazing parents.I pray that my kids will turn out to be 'good' kids. Teaching them how to Love God with all their heart and love their neighbor as themselves are invaluable lessons.

Speaking of big families always makes me think of God's BIG promise to Abraham in Genesis.

I will make you a great nation; I will bless you and make your name great; and you shall be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed." {Gen. 12:1-3}

This truth (which is much too big for this post) becomes extremely important as we investigate the work of one of Abraham’s descendants, the Lord Jesus Christ. Our eternal salvation is based upon our relationship to Jesus Christ who came into this world through Abraham’s family. We become beneficiaries of God’s promise to Abraham through Christ.

“And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise” (Gal. 3:29).

But our being “in Christ” depends upon God and God alone! Our eternal life and our future destiny are all of Him! God promised and God alone sealed the deal.

We accidentally or (more likely) purposefully forget to instill the little things in our children's lives that will make the most impact. I am talking about the character issues of the heart like grace, forgiveness, patience, faith, commitment and kindness in our daily actions. Remember the the promise? "You shall be a blessing" rings loud in my ears. I KNOW there is so much more to those verses than the blessings of a family...if I can just teach my children that God blessed them and they can be blessings...

Having my big family around me makes me want to be a better mom. It helps me see the beauty in the dirt piles. What have you swept up lately? Did you count the blessings?

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Two birthday girls, one party.

You say it's your birthday?It's my birthday,too.We got some really awesome gifts from really awesome family.
Yeah, I know. We should do this every year.
It sure would be easier on mom to have one party even though our birthdays are 10 days apart.It's a plan then, at least until we are able to talk:)

We celebrate birthdays in church by counting pennies for each year. I have had a child up front every Sunday so far this month so Pastor just went ahead and opened this morning by saying,"Rani, do we have a birthday?" to which I replied, "nope, not until next week".

We had a family party for the girls today. Maleah kept us all grounded. She said, "Mom, Nora turned one on Thursday and Addi doesn't turn two until next Sunday so right now we have two one year olds."

Yep, she's right. At this moment I have a seven year old, a six year old and a couple of one year olds, prayers are appreciated:)

Happy birthday you beautiful little blessings!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Been there...

Who am I kidding? I AM there.

I had to get these down before I forgot...

I am drowning in material for posts. I am wading in it. I am sure you are shocked.

Here's a few tidbits to get you through the weekend from my newly 6 year old son.

Standing in line in the hospital cafeteria on his birthday, Gavin is juggling plates of salad and pizza and ice cream. He carefully put each plate on the scale to be weighed. The clerk says something about how nice of a job he is doing, she should hire him, she says. To which he replies without missing a single beat. "I can't work on the 10th. I am having a birthday party."

He has been learning to read by watching his older sister and just this morning he was sitting at the table reading the cereal box. He often uses his ears to read, listening carefully to what Maleah says, but he is sounding out words like pop. So he reads..."Snap, Crapple, Pop." That one cracked me up.

So, just now he comes into the kitchen listening to his new mp3 player. He is just a singing along to the songs. He doesn't even know the words but he still pushes the noises out, it sound sort of like a howling cow. "Neuooo, make the wattaaa, woooorld a better plllllaaaaaceeee." Anyway, he stops for a minute when he sees me standing by the counter, utensils in hand. Then, at the top of his lungs he screams, "MOM, ARE YOU MAKING NORA'S CAKE!" It almost knocked me over it was so loud. We had a quick pow wow about how he doesn't have to scream when he has earbuds in.

Yowsers. My ribs hurt.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Babies don't keep.

One year ago, tonight, I was lying the hospital trying to enjoy the free movies through contractions. Tomorrow morning my littlest will be one year old. It seems like this year went SOSOSOOSO fast. It feels like only a few days ago I was pregnant.

Today, while Addison slept, I played peekaboo and chase with Nora for a long while in the living room. She is so full of joy... and the giggles:) I adore her. I don't know where the time went this past year. She was just a tiny baby in my arms and now she is a little line-backer pushing her way to the front of the action. I studied her face her dark eyes and her chubby cheeks and I thought to myself how much longer do I have with her? How many more rockabye nights? How many more games of peekaboo? Not enough, I fear.

Every time I look at her, or anyone of my children I am reminded of how blessed I am. In the same moment my heart aches with the responsibility I have been trusted to. Last Sunday, Pastor reminded us of our responsibility as parents, as adults in society. He spoke from these verses.

And Jesus called a little child to Him,
set him in the midst of them, and said,
"Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and
become as little children, you will by no means
enter the kingdom of heaven.
Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child
is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
And whoever receives one little child
like this in My name receives Me.

But whoever causes one of these little ones
who believe in Me to sin,
it would be better for him
if a millstone were hung around his neck,
and he were drowned in the depth of the sea."
Matthew 18:2-6 New King James Version

Did ya catch that last part? Train up a child...what a responsibility? I have a lot of work to do.

I finally moved the crib out of our room. I am almost too embarrassed to write that, I never kept a crib in our room longer than the first few months with the older kids and with Addison and Nora we just waited too long. Dad is working nights this week so I thought I would put the girls in a room together and see what happens. Tonight is the first night. I put them both to bed, we prayed and I turned the light off. They gabbed a bit, it was so cute, and then silence. I hope the quiet means the night will go smoothly.

Listen to me mommies, they do grow up fast, too fast. Hold them tight while you can:)

I am thankful for all four of my beautiful little blessings, but tonight I am thinking about my little Lou Lou. Thank you, Lord, for Nora. Thank you for helping her grow (even if it seems like it is happening too fast)and for keeping her healthy and so adorably giggly and happy. Please bless her tonight in her 'new' room. Be with her and comfort her. She is an amazing and special blessing to our family. Help me teach her about Jesus so that she, too, can enjoy the gift of heaven. In your Holy Name, Amen.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

He's BaaaAAAaaack...

Project man, that is. This time siding and windows. Out with the old...
in with the new.

This is the old living room window.

Friday, October 09, 2009

Birthday surprise!

Happy 6th birthday, buddy. I KNOW you will remember this one forever.

Monday, October 05, 2009

The 'truth' fairy

Gavin lost a tooth at school on Friday. He came home telling a tale of paper towels "full of blood".

The tooth went right under the pillow and, you guessed it, she didn't show.

The next morning, Gavin said, "Mom, I know why the tooth fairy couldn't come, it was the storm."

Dodged a bullet with that one, I did.

So tonight, the Gavinator walks over to me and says, "Look mom, another tooth!" He pulled it himself and only two drops of blood on his t-shirt to disappoint him. He ran to put it under his pillow while screaming, "Just in case the rain stops and she can get here tonight, I'll be ready."

Maleah, in the living room with me, ponders the truth about the tooth fairy. Picture her, all almost eight years of her, standing with her hand on her hip waving her other hand and saying "I wonder if she's real, I mean, I believe in her, definitely, but I wish I could see her. I think it might be really God and not the tooth fairy at all. But hen I wouldn't ever see Him anyway. Oh, well."

Hopefully the money gets under the pillow sometime, storm or no storm. I don't have a real good track record.

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Putting me in my place

I found holy experience a while back, forgot about it and re-found it, thankfully, through my sister.

I hope to use it to start my day from now on, rather than facebook.

Hit the nail on the head, she did, with this post on priorities. So many days go by and I feel like a failure as a mom, a wife, a person because my house isn't perfect, the laundry isn't folded the papers aren't sorted.

If I could only remember that my faith comes first NOT last. I miss so much in life because of my frustration with the messes in life. The messes consume me. I want to be free of the messes. I want to have time to sit and read to my kids and not feel guilty that the dishes aren't done. I want to laugh at the kids when they play in the toilet instead of getting frustrated with them.

Process not product.

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.
2 Cor. 4:18


Friday, October 02, 2009

You can't really tell, but I got a bigger table last week.

This is what my kitchen looks like as of late. It's a shame you can't tell that I have a larger table. I am thankful for the life I have that deems it neccessary to get a larger table. EXTREMELY thankful. Yet, I can't help noticing how exhausted my sis and I look in this photo. Life is full at the moment.