Thursday, June 25, 2009

Frugal Tip!

Do you ever get tired of all of those grocery bags and not know what to do with them?

Well, I have a solution...and it will save you money!

Instead of throwing them away, use them as trash bags.

This what we do in our house.

I hang one on a cabinet door knob.

You never have an overflowing trash can...

And you have saved money in buying trash bags!

Don't worry about it looking sloppy when guests come over...just throw it in a garbage can outside and you will have a nice clean trash can when they arrive!

For more frugal ideas, click on " Frugal Fridays" above!

It has been "A Day"!

Have you ever woke up in the morning just knowing it was going to be "one of those days"?

You wake up still tired ( especially because you are still getting up almost hourly from coughing spasms from a child who has whooping cough), in a bad mood. Maybe have a headache. Baby wakes up early so you don't have time to finish prayer time, the kids start to quarrel over toys, a child is sick and you wonder if it will spread to the rest of the kids, one child is getting upset because you don't understand what they are saying. Milk is spilled.

In the midst of this, do you struggle like I do to keep a soft answer because the Bible tells us "A soft answer turns away wrath" while your flesh is wanting to SCREAM! After all, I want to set a godly example before my family.

Yet the flesh is rising. So I try to talk to the children about the sin in their hearts and get them to understand this is why they are fighting. As calmly as I can not showing the anger that is festering up inside of me.

I cheerfully tell them to have a cheerful heart when inside mine is NOT cheerful. All it is thinking is......this is going to be a day! I start imagining what my day will look like while in the background their is murmuring by a child. One just spilled milk...again.

I feel the need to yell at them and tell them to stop all this mess.

So what do I do? My sin of anger is getting worse! I cry to God "Help me God because if you don't I will lose it right now! I need your strength!!!"

Then God convicts me of what I tell the kids to do when they are thinking of themselves.

"Think of the things of Christ and your day will be better. How can you have a bad day and think about Christ? He is to good!!! "

"Rejoice because this is the day that the Lord has made."

I open up the Bible and read to them...really myself...

Psalms 100.

"Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.
Serve the Lord with gladness: come before His presence with singing.
Know ye that the Lord He is God: it He that has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise: be thankful unto Him, and bless His name.
For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations."

I then play a song "This Is the Day" for them and myself.

While the song is playing I picked up Elijah and twirled around the table dancing with him and laughing. The kids had big smiles on their faces and our day seemed to be getting better.

Until about 30 minutes later. The bickering began again ( on a side note, my children do not usually quarrel this much but they are really tired!). I start feeling the frustration building up in me. Next thing I know, my flesh is taking over again. I took my eyes off of God's goodness.

I fight. I will not let my sin control me!

"Now what!" Another circumstance to mess up my day I think.

I will not let this get to me. I will keep my thoughts on Christ.

School begins. I have a toddler hanging on me screaming in my ear with delight, a 6 yr. old working on reading his phrases to me, an 8 yr. old asking me questions and a 4 yr. old telling me she feels better and wants to eat. All at once. I try to manage it all being calm. Then out of frustration one of the children snaps at me for something.

I could feel my blood boiling!

"Go to my room NOW for disrespecting me and talking to me in a harsh voice!" as I tell my child in a harsh voice. Yes, I was aware that I was being just as disrespectful to my child and tried to stop but it was like something overcame me.

I call my husband with my days problems so far and confess my sins to him. Telling him the house is a wreck, the kids behaviour is not good and neither is mine. He is very loving and encourages me.

So I get off the phone and decide I am going to start over. So I make lunch and take it outside for a picnic. The kids LOVE picnics!

Without going into the rest of the details, my day did not get better. Kids still tired and whiny and me...still having "a day". I vented to a good friend ( thank you friend! I appreciate your ear!) By 4pm I was done. I was counting down the time till AJ would be home.

Now it is 7:47pm, AJ and the kids are gone to his parents and I am home with the 2 younger ones who are sleeping and as I sit here writing my post the Lord has been convicting me.

I tried in MY strength to overcome my sin. Instead of resting in Him. Why do I do this?

My flesh fails EVERY time but God NEVER fails!

So though I was happy to get some time alone I am now looking forward to seeing my children and can't wait until they get home. I have some repenting to do and ask for forgiveness from my kids for my actions and sin. I need to tell them what the Lord has convicted me of. Though they probably won't understand.

I think I will write some scripture on some index cards and place them up around my house in frequent areas to help me keep my mind on Christ.

And most importantly...I will now go and ask my heavenly Father for His forgiveness for my actions, my trusting in my own strength instead of His, and ask for HIS help and meditate on HIS goodness.

Though my day has been rough, I will rejoice for this is has been a day HE hath made and preordained for me to grow in Him.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wordless Wednesday

Mommy's Little Helper!

Elijah may just have turned two a couple of months ago but he is surprisingly a good sweeper for his age. May God continue to give him a cheerful heart who wants to serve in our household by helping out!

Monday, June 15, 2009

And the Winner Is......

My last post was about AJ and I taking each Monday night to spend quality time together. I mentioned we were going to play Settler's Of Catan. And we did. :)

AJ set up the board while I took a shower.

And as we always do, we shook hands and said, "May the fun begin."

We both had great spots and were doing well. I took a couple of spots AJ wanted ( Hee, Hee!!!) and was on the roll.

Until...this move.

It was the move that changed the game for AJ. In about 2-3 turns he went from losing to winning the game.

I was mad ( not really)...

He was happy!!!

But in the end, I look at MY MAN and the love I have for him came over me and I had a "Love Burst" for AJ.

So here you have it, AJ won "Settler's" but I am the true winner because I have a great husband who wants to spend time with me.

This may seem like a simple night to you but it reminds me of God's goodness of Him blessing me with a wonderful man who desires to love and nurture me with his time. God truly has given me a great guy......even though he beat me in my favorite game again......

I am off to bed now, going to dream about Settler's and......

Good night!

Plans Tonight?

What are you doing this Monday night? Fixing dinner? Watching tv? Bathing kids? Reading a book?...What? What is that you ask? What am I doing?...I am glad you asked...

I am having a date with my wonderful, handsome husband.

No, we are not getting a sitter. No, we are not going out to dinner, we are staying right here, at our house.

Every Monday is our date night. I wake up looking forward to this special time with AJ. I make sure dinner is done early. I think about what we are going to do. I try to fix up myself a little sometimes.

But what about the kids? What are they doing?

They get the privileged of going to bed an hour early. At first when we began our date nights, they did not understand why or like it but now they know, this is "Daddy and Mommy's Special Date Night." Beginning in the morning, I begin reminded them it is our date night. They actually sometimes get excited for us...until I remind them they go to bed early. :)

Though some may think this is selfish of us, I would highly debate the issue.

We are teaching the kids that our relationship is important. AJ sees me as the most precious in his life ( besides Christ) and AJ is most important in my life ( again...except for Christ). They see we love each other so much we are setting time aside to spend time with one another. They learn that life is not all about them. I get the desired time of being with my husband and enjoy the adult stimulation after a long day of taking care of our kids who can be demanding, whiny, or disobedient at times. Our dates nights have grown us closer as we spend quality time with one another.

Don't forget to nurture your relationship with your spouse. One day our children will be gone. It is important to keep our love "alive" so your relationship with your spouse won't be "lost".
I encourage each one of you who are married to try to pick a day once a week, or whatever is most convenient for you, to set aside time for one another. We chose Monday's because the kids are usually extra tired from staying up late on Sunday nights after church.

So, what do we do on these nights? Well, it depends on the night. We may watch a movie, play a game, read, talk,etc...Whatever we decide.

Tonight, we are playing a game. My FAVORITE game in the whole wide world!

Settler's of Catan

Anyone ever hear of or played this game before? If not, you HAVE to get it! It is the best game! I could play it everyday. Sometimes I even dream about it. I am not that good but still love the challenge each time I play.

So, this is what I am doing tonight.......going on a date with my great husband whom I cherish so much, playing Settler's! And I plan on winning!!! :)

Who do you think will win?.....Stay tuned to see who the winner is of tonight's game is!!!

P.S. What is your favorite game? What would you recommend we try one night?

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Monday, June 8, 2009

A new week of meals. I want to thank you who sent me recipes on the blog and personally to me. I will be adding them to my meal list when I meal plan again. I look forward to trying them.

Monday: Leftover Zesty Mexican Chicken
(Recipe below)
Tuesday: Pork Chops ( sandwich or Mon. leftover for me)
Mac. and cheese

Wednesday:Pasta With Veg. (add chicken)
Garlic Bread

Thursday: Leftovers

Friday: Tuna Casserole
Mixed veg.

Sat. night & Sunday Lunch: Chicken and gravy
Black-eyed peas and rice
Roasted green beans

Zesty Mexican Chicken:
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 can (14 oz.) of diced tomatoes
1 large onion
1 med. green pepper, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 tbs. lime juice
1 tbsp. hot pepper sauce
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
3 cups cooked rice

-Place chicken in a slow cooker coated with cooking spray.
-In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, onion,green pepper, garlic,lime juice, salt, pepper, and pepper sauce.
-Pour over chicken.
-Cover and cook on low for 3-4 hrs. until chicken is done.
-Serve with rice.

I did not follow this recipe as is. What I did different is...... I combined all onion, green pepper and garlic and cooked them in olive oil until they were tender ( original recipe these would still be crispy and we don't like 1/2 raw onions). When this was finished, I added the tomatoes, salt, pepper, and lime juice. Stirred. Finally, I added shredded chicken I already had on hand. We are not fans of hot sauce so I omitted this.
We eat brown rice which takes 45 min. to cook so I began cooking the rice before I started the sauce.

My opinion on this new recipe was it was "Fair". AJ liked it so I will make it again but probably not for a few months.

Have a nice week!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Fruits and Veg. Challenge!

Did you say vegetables? Fruit? Can they be in one dish and it be good? I mean really, who would put vegetables with fruit?......That would be me! :)

At our house, we skip the iceberg lettuce salad and go straight for the spinach. Even my kids detest iceberg lettuce. They say it is nasty, I agree.

When I fix our salads I ask everyone what they want in their salad. If they want it....they get it, unless it is a cookie or something like that.

Here are a few things I add if requested and I have them already here at the house:

Raisins, grapes, apples, nuts, cucumbers, tomatoes, cheese, strawberries...I know there has been other things requested, but can't remember them right now ( The raisins and grapes add a nice sweet flavor).

What is that you ask? Dressing? What do we use for dressing? My husband likes to make his own creation of olive oil and other "stuff", not sure what because he makes it, I like Ranch, and the kids?......Applesauce, unsweetened that is. They LOVE it on their salads ( and fish sticks and hamburgers, and....well...I don't want to gross you out to much!).

That is what we do for salads. Now for snacks:

Frozen grapes.
Frozen blueberries.
Healthy Smoothies made into popsicles.
Watermelon cut into different shapes with cookie cutters.
Baby carrot sticks (my kids think they are fun).
Apple with peanut butter.
Dehydrated apples or pineapple.

These are a few things we like to eat as snacks. My kids do like cookies but they get more excited when they have the why not give that to then all of the time!

As far as vegetables as a snack...if you have any...please let me know! That would be great to add to my snack list! At least to mommy!

If you would like some more ideas, check out Heavenly Homemakers.

Wordless Wednesday

Country Kids:

We don't live in the country, but in our hearts, we are country folks waiting for our frontier land.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Why is it when I try to pray my mind starts to wonder? I desire to be intimate with Christ but the moment I go to Him my mind...all of a sudden...has all these other thoughts that get in the way. I ask God to clear my mind, to keep my focus on Him, but the wondering continues.

Why can't I stay focused when I feel these things are important to me? Do I really count these things important? If I did, wouldn't I better be able to stay focused?

Why can't I seem to get past that thick wall that seems to separate me from Christ? It must be sin. What sin am I in denial about? Search me, Oh God, and show me my sin!

Why am I wrestling? I love Christ...I really least I think I do, wouldn't I be delighted to go to Him and not "make myself" pray?

Flesh is a terrible thing. Sin. Me. Oh to have a clear mind. To have a mind steadfast for Christ. To be able to go to Him and have that sweet relationship that I long for. To cry over my sin, seek His forgiveness, to sing songs to Him in my heart . To cry out for those I love, those I don't know, our nation......

Why is it hard right now? Why does it come easy at other times? Why?

I don't know all the answers to my "why's" but I do pray that in spite of my failures that somehow Christ would be glorified. Honored.

All I can do is rest in Christ and pray...wrestle and persevere even when my ugly flesh gets in the way!

Create in me a new heart, Oh God. Wash me, clothe me in robes of righteousness, search me, know me, try me. My affections are worthless . Conquer the power of secret sin!...I humbly pray!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Here is what our family will be eating this week, Lord-willing. Sat. will be a new recipe I am trying. Hope it turns out! Please make sure you see my "help needed" at the end of the post.

Monday: Dinner In A Bag ( similar to Goulash)
Homemade Herb Biscuits

Tuesday: Sloppy Joes ...Amy C.-I'll make sure I save some for you :)
Homemade Sweet Potato Fries

Wednesday: Leftover Dinner In A Bag

Thursday: Homemade Pizza for Katie Faith's 5th birthday ( her choice)
Homemade Garlic Breadsticks (if time permits)

Friday: AJ's parents house for family reunion
( bring garlic bread )

Sat. and Sunday Lunch: Zesty Mexican Chicken Soup

Help needed!!!
We need to try something new!!!
...... so if any of you have a favorite recipe, could be side dish, main meal, dessert or even breakfast...please share it with me! Keep in mind, we only eat turkey and chicken. No pork or red meat. Any of your ground beef recipes I could use ground turkey instead so please send those also.