Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Sleeping Child gets left in Taxi, Cabbie Nearly Gets Blamed

Here's the whole story if you wish to read it... Basically though, Cabbie picks up family from airport, drops them off at home unloads luggage and leaves with Child. Parents call station, Cabbie returns child (nearly right away) Everyone is safe. Cabbie gets a HUGE tip. Cabbie gets chewed out by local Police, people are wondering if Parents are being investigated

Why does anyone have to be investigated? Basically it was an accident. Everyone was busy, and the child was so quiet it slipped pass everyone. Story has a Happy ending. Why should anyone take blame? Why should the Police have to take action. The chances of that child being abducted are pretty slim. Most Childhood abductions are by a family member or close friend.

Who is next? The first time Dad who had to do the shopping this week because Mommy is sick and got all the groceries in and forgot the baby in the cart? He realized his mistake and turned around to get the baby before he even left the parking lot??
Yup let's slap him with Jail time.

The Mom with 3 children in the grocery store who's 3 year old has to use the bathroom, there are no family restroom so leaves the Oldest child and the baby outside the restroom....

*shakes head*

Thursday, July 23, 2009

General Musings

I know I am making progress FLYing. My My Living room has yet to be out of control, my bathroom is looking pretty good (Other than the floor) My Bedroom is a bliss! The Spare room is usually ready for anyone who may come and play in it.

That is its self is nothing special until you consider the fact that I am still managing to do these things even though I am in the middle of a fibro flair. I am in a lot of pain for no reason, I am cranky, sleepy, Not sleeping very well. My routines that I am learning through FLYlady are making it easier on me to keep my home up regardless of how I am feeling. A month ago nothing would have been done on a day like today, or a week like this. But through the pain (and drugs really don't help) I still feel better about myself.

But Not all of the credit goes to FLYlady. My husband and I had a moment not too long ago. He was tired of the Chaos that was our home. The Chaos had lessened from what it was a year ago, but we really want to have a clean, uncluttered, happy home. I realized that to get what I needed I needed to change alot. I needed to seek routines, I needed to seek the Lord. Order and Cleanliness are not in my nature. I tend to hop from one activity to the next often leaving the remains of the last strung all over the place. I tend to keep myself busy and preoccupied.

I have been wanting to be a Living Example of Christ's work and I knew that with my unorganized home, and my unorganized life, I could never really be that. I dreamed of being able to whip out a casserole for a friend in need, or bringing someone here for a much needed prayer hour or even a Bible Study. I couldn't do that in our CHAOS.

So I prayed and I prayed for a solution and finally I remembered FLY lady. I tried it a while back but I wasn't truely ready. So I visited her, and suddenly everything was making sense. It wasn't just about changing my home, it was about changing my lifestyle and my routines. I prayed for the Lord to help me as I start it and that the changes would be used to Glorify Him.

So far 10 days into it, My home is better than ever. I am reading my Bible regularly, I, the queen of Randomocity, am keeping a few small basic routines. Its a long journey I am on, but I know its for the best!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Wisdom of a preschooler

Good Morning World!!

I am happily FLYing away this morning. I am dressed head to toe and I am feeling great!

I announced to J this morning after he was dropped off I would be making chocolate chip pancakes and my son looks at me and solemly says "Momma, Chocolate is Candy. Candy is not for breakfast"

Figures. It seems I have taught him a little too well.


I guess its time to teach this kiddo how to live a little more vicariously. An hour later and his pancake is still untouched. Oh well Lunch maybe?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Reflective Saturday

Bill said on Facebook this morning:

Another Day, How will we choose to live it? Looking at everything wrong around us or what is good?

I choose to look at what is good.

Here is the assignment

List 10 blessings/things that made you happy/positive things from the week past. You don't have to elaborate, just as long as you understand them.

If you want to help others out Tag 5 friends to do the same. you can do this assignment here, on facebook, on myspace, on twitter even, just do it.

10.Snorting Savannah
9.Cheese Dogs
8.Harry Potter
4.Possible Job for me
3.G's job

Tagging: Linda, Sarah, Christy, Bill, and Jo

Friday, July 17, 2009

Getting Control of my home

I am not used to routines and I am by no means a house keeper. However I do really want to my home to be a happy welcoming place that I can have guests over and serve them compliments of Southern Plate. It started with a few good recipes. Now that I know I can cook, and I enjoy it and word is getting out that I can cook I want to have people over. I want to share my cooking wealth with the world. But to do that I need to gain control of myself and my home.

So I have turned to FLY lady. FLY stands for Finally Loving Yourself. This is something I have needed to do for years. I am on day three and my life is changing already. My dishwasher is now referred to as the dirty dish holder, I have been running it at night and emptying it first thing in the AM and my new Shiny Sink makes me proud and overprotective. If I jump down enough throats eventually they will figure out to put dishes in the dishwasher. For now they seem to go on the stove, which I empty two to three times a day (But that's OK, because its better than sitting in the sink forever).

Its a start. And although I backslid already this week (mini trip and Movie and just a lot going on) I feel loads better about myself and I found it easy to get back where I need to be.

If you haven't yet check out It may change your life.

Now strictly for your entertainment purposes

Things I have learned this week

1. 4 kids 3 and under=bad idea.
2. If you cook it they will come... This applies to Toddlers, grown Men and ducks.
3. If you are going to see a movie in the theater, pre-screen everyone you bring with you with a test run before hand. If they can't be quiet for 10 minutes, You have two options: Be prepared to shoot or just don't bring them.
4. Movie Popcorn is marked up 400% but it is oooo so good.
5. Husbands tend to freak out when another woman sits next to them in a theater
6. If two cats have not been around each other in a month, don't try to put them in the same room
7. The best response to "I have a gun" is not "Me too"
8. When in a drive through fast food line, the appropriate response to "Can I take your order" Is not "They got a mouse in there"
9. the one-eyed duck is probably the toughest, Once you win him over you will never rid yourself of ducks and geese.
10. Don't waste your money on a 3 dollar grill that comes with the charcoal, you will need at least two of them.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Lesson's Learned from my Lord, and my 3 year old

My Testimony is living proof that the Lord enjoys his mysteries. I learned in Church that Mysteries are like secrets from God. When things are said, or when things happen and we don't understand it, God knows what is going on. The One who knows every hair on my head, has a reason for everything that we endure. His time is always right and we will never truly understand why things happen because we are unable to see the bigger plan and what is in store for us. These mysteries are revealed after the fact, Like an epiphany or when we have solved a puzzle or a riddle and all of the clues seem crystal to us now. Further proof of the Lord's mysteries. I come to NC for a summer, I wound up staying. Within a few months of me moving here I started going to church. Less than a year from my move I was saved. I am a completely different woman than the teenager who come down for a visit.

My Son has decided a few things. Most importantly. He is FOUR, not three. Or so he says. Children grow up so fast, I have no clue why my three year old is attempting to skip a year of his life. Maybe its because he misses Bible School and if it were next summer he could have another week of Bible School.

My Son has also decided he wants to wash cars for a living. I cleaned out two of the three vehicles yesterday. G then decided we needed to take both vehicles to the fire dept for a thorough vaccuum and wash. Will had a blast, instead of a regular Hose, they use a small fire hose, and my Son enjoyed trying to use it. He was soaked from head to toe, and even decided to hand wash the truck by dipping his hands in the soap and scrubbing the truck. After that He had to Hose Me and Daddy off. It was great seeing my husband laugh about it, I was a little unsure of how he would react. Will got water inside both vehicles too. I think its time to Call Papa and see if Will can help him wash some fire trucks (I want some pictures if that winds up happening)

If car washing is not his true calling He has choosen an alternitive. He is going to be a First name only Celebrity, as he keeps insisting that He does not have a last name. He will simply be known as Will. Maybe he will reach the Fame status of Cher or Prince. Well what ever his dreams are, I hope that he is Happy and Lives for the Lord regardless.

Speaking of the Lord, I heard the most beautiful, off Key, Loudest rendition of Jesus Loves Me yesterday curtesy of Will. It is really touching to here him singing songs we sing in Church and I try hard to get him to sing this. He knew every word. I am so proud of him!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Desprately Needed Monday Inspiration

I keep a 9 month old, 7 year old and 8 year old in the day. The 7 year old has had major mouthiness problems since he stayed with his grandmother for a week and a half. He also is very sly with my three year old and I find my three year old getting into a lot more trouble than should be. I know the 7 year old is initiating most of the things causing my son to be in trouble, but I have no evidence. Anyways its been a rough day already mostly because I feel awful, so rather than be ill with the children un necessarily, I decided to seek something to lift my spirits. I hope you too will enjoy!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

My Excellent Family Dinner, and My Testimony.

Some of you know this, and rest of you are fixing to find out. I am from a whole notha planet! It definately explains alot. It explains why people do a double take when I talk and why some of the words I say are questionable around here. Some people don't think I should even be here and there are a few afraid to touch me in fear that they too will become what I am. Now that all of you are scratching your heads... Let me tell you where I am from. Lake Erie, Ohio. That's right I am a Yankee, and around here what is worse than being a Yankee, is being a Yankee who moved to the South. Its ok though, the Lord sent me here.

There are times I miss home. I miss my family, I miss my lake (I lived within 2 miles of Lake Erie most of my Childhood, Within 2 blocks probably half of my childhood.) Five years ago I thought I had my life planned. I was a senior in High School, accepted to a the University of my choice, my bf at the time (A southern Guy I met my One yr in High School spent in Carolina) Was going to come live with me while I finished my degree, and we talked about moving to NC when I was done, but I know in my heart I would stay and work on my Masters first. Things change quickly. Within a year we broke up and I remet my Husband. I come down to Carolina in the Summer between Freshman and Sophmore year, to get a close look at the school system and decide if I would teach there. I wound up dropping out of school and getting married and A baby on the Way by September.

Here I am 10 hours from Home, no turning back. It was hard. It wasn't just marriage and pregnancy I was adjusting to, but a whole new way of living.

Over the past four years, I have often times wondered how I got here. I have been so home sick that I stayed in bed for a week. I have cried countless tears because Momma wouldn't be there while I raised her only Grandchild.

Nothing against my husband, but I have often wondered what would happen to us if We divorced, or worse, if something happened to him while at work (He's a cop) I have often times debated if I would go home or continue my life here.

As hard as it has been I have been blessed in so many ways. Most of G's family accepted me and Now I am truely one of there own. I am closer to his Grandmother than I was with My own Mom before I moved. I feel like I am her daughter much of the time. His family bends over backwards to help each other. I am especially grateful for his Grandmother and Aunts, these three ladies Never once blinked an eye at me, they never forgot that my husband doesn't tell me about family events, family traditions, what goes on on the Holidays, etc. His aunts and Grandmother, always made sure to call me and tell me where to go, what to bring, and if I wasn't coming, they come got me.

More importantly. They got me in church. I was here 5 months before I started going to Church. It was almost a year before I was saved. His Family has prayed for me each step of the way, they have been there wach step of the way. Now I am leading others to Christ.

I am at the Point now, I know Why I am here. I know why I had to leave my family. I still get homesick, but I am more homesick for Heaven than anything. I still miss them thought.

I also wanted to start showing the family my appreciation for everything they have done for us in the last 4 years. A Few months ago, I came across Southern Plate. Christy has made things so easy for her readers. I have literally been transformed from a Microwave Chef, to fooling Southern Ladies with my Cooking skills.

I have been slowly Feeding our Grandmother, and she has been very much enjoying it. I have been enticing my Parent in laws with Strawberry Pie, and Mud Pie (Or as we call it Butt Ugly Cake)
Now I thought I was read to do a dinner. So I called up my Grandmother and the Two Aunts, and just like they have done to me so many times, I told them What time and Where and instructed them to be there. George's family is too large for me to attempt to feed everyone at once, so I will get the Parent's in Law and the 4 sisters, and nieces and nephews later.

I Got to cooking. I wound up fixing Taco Casserole, chicken and Broccoli Casserole, My first Ever home made Biscuits, and Chocolate Sundae Cake. (We also had a large Salad and corn)

Let me Say, there was absolutely no casserole or biscuits left over. Only a third of the cake remained. I cooked for 10 people. Half of us were crying while we ate.

I know that the Lord works in ways we will never understand. I don't know if I will ever Live with my yankee Family again. But I do know that I am as close to Home as I can get on Earth. Believe or Not, Christy has helped me get there!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Two for 1

This was actually supposed to be Friday's Steal.

Its a Freebie and I would value it at $200. Let me repeat TWO-HUNDRED DOLLAR VALUE!

Actually I don't know what the value is, but I looked at the current value of Microsoft office and you get pretty much everything you can get from office plus one better. You can save it to almost any kind of document format!

Its inspiring to know there are still free things out there and people that care enough to want you to suceed in life.

This is legitamately free. No Adware involved. Probably one of the best freebies out there. And its not like free music downloads it won't come back to bite you.

Ok so I know you are dying to know what I am talking about.

From thier webpage 3 is the leading open-source office software suite for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, graphics, databases and more. It is available in many languages and works on all common computers. It stores all your data in an international open standard format and can also read and write files from other common office software packages. It can be downloaded and used completely free of charge for any purpose.

If you are working on something at home and need it to open at school, all you have to do is safe it to a microsoft extension. Say its a paper you wrote. Just save it as a .doc file
If you can never remember what extension to use

Go here for a list of the most commonly used ones

Or you can do what I do, and look at a file you know is a word document and get the extension that way!

So What are you waiting for, Go Check it out and feel good about yourself that you just got a $200 value free.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Little Things

I am up later than I should be.

There is a lot on my mind right now.

In a meeting on completely unrelated matters, my son was attacked. Accusations were made about my three year old son, that neither he nor I could defend. We were not there. I have been told by two different people at that meeting and both stories are oddly identical on several key pieces of information involving my son.

In as little as two days I have learned so many things. Things I did not want to see, things I did not want to be apart of. I have always been a person that lets things roll off of my shoulders. Anytime a person has come to me, with any problem, regardless of size, I have consistantly and quietly listened to what the person had to say, fixed the problem and forgot about it. I don't let very much get to me when it involves people that are not close to me.

I am disappointed in the person that made the allegations against my three year old. This particular person I would expect to come to me with them. Allow me to deal with them. Instead they are trashing My SON. In front of others. Transforming small three year old behaviors into that of a monster. Making my son appear like an animal for things that this persons own son does.
I have been torn to pieces about this.

However tonight, an unknowing angel blessed me. I recieved a small message from a friend's husband on Myspace, thanking me for helping to care for the children. It was completly out of the blue and led me to tears. This small gesture gave me hope. It put a smile on my face.

This Late night blog serves two purposes:
1. For me to get out a few things on my chest (which I deleted most of it after writing of it)
2. To remind anyone who may read this that Small gestures make a big difference in life. You truely never know when a quick hello, thank you, hug, how are you, etc. is going to make a big impact.

My family and I have some thinking to do. Our problem is not yet resolved. We also have some looking to do because I refuse to be caught anywhere that my child in unwelcome. The comments that were made show me exactly how unwelcome he is. Regardless of how dark the storm is right now though, I know my God is going to make a way. The Thank You note was a sign to me, a reminder that there are other better things going on in this big world. Like the three beautiful children I will be keeping tomorrow.

Parenting Puzzle of the day: Don't=too late

Problem: My children do exactly the thing I told them not to do!

This is a common problem with a simple sounding solution. I say it is simple sounding, because once you think on it enough it seems like common sense and it appears easy to do. Sadly though, Habits are hard to break.

The cause of this problem is our wording. Most of us always tell them no. To use an example from my own life this week. "Will Please don't run in the Church." All my son hears is the Key Words:Will run Church.

When we read, most of us do not actually read every single written word. What we tend to do is pick up the key words and the rest falls in place. This is true with our children. When you tell them not to run. They simply hear RUN!

Every three year old boy and girl knows that the long hallway just outside of the sanctuary is just begging for someone to run down it.

When children hear adults using the same words that they are already thinking. Its natural to link them. So when my three year old is looking at the big long empty hallway, just knowing that it WANTS him to run down it, and I say "Will Please don't run." He just heard his permission to run.

What I should have said instead was "Will, we walk in Church." I did this after telling him not to run, rather than yelling at him for running. Even I have a hard time remembering to rephrase for him. Once I instructed him what TO-DO, I gave him a new thought in his head. He slowed down and waited on me.

It is difficult to change our habits. It takes a conscious effort on our behalf to rewire our thinking, in a way that enables our children to listen. Children want to please us, they just have other things on thier mind as well.

What are some other things you say that you could reword?

Don't pee in your underwear .
We pee in the toilet.

Stop jumping on the couch.
Please sit on the couch, or you can jump on the floor.

Shut Up!
Use our quiet voices outside.

There are other reasons our Children don't listen to us, but that is for another day. Right now let's focus on one thing we can do to help the problem! Try this for a day and report back how it went.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Real inspiration for the day.

Treasure the little happy moments. You will desprately need them when you are cleaning up the second pair of poopy underwear in an hour, from a child who is not afraid to go, knows how to go, has gone, and just was too busy to go. If you do not have something to think back on, some happy sweet little moment, you will find yourself crossing a line you do not want to cross.

Monday's Inspiration

I honestly believe that every time we laugh we add time to our lives! So this monday I would like to give you a few things to make you laugh, and hopefully extend your life!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Friday's Steal

Todays Steal is a free program that helps you in studying the Bible.

Here is a short description from the Manufacturer's Webpage

e-Sword is a fast and effective way to study the Bible. e-Sword is feature rich and user friendly with more capabilities than you would expect in a free software package. The fact that e-Sword is free is just one of the blessings and does not speak of the quality of the software

I have been using this program lately and I really like it. It is easy to use. I can download some extras with it (Most of which are also free, Watch out though, if there is a $ sign next to it, there is a charge, but otherwise most of the extra downloads are free.

My two favorite features are the ability to include your own notes and link them to the text in the Bible and the ability to add your own memory scripture to be tested on!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Sicilian Casserole

I am working on getting back online to write more. I have a lot of great ideas for entries. I have just been a little busy!

Don't ask me where I found this. I found it somewhere online it is amazing, freezes well, and tastes excellent! I made it last night for the first time, and already found myself changing it up, so I am going to give you the Brittainy version of it.

1 lb. ground beef
1 (6 ounce) can tomato paste
1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
3/4 cup water
Italian seasoning-to taste
Garlic Powder-to taste
2 cups elbow macaroni
8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, cubed
3/4 cup milk
1/3 cup sour cream
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Also optional veggies such as onion, mushroom, greenpeppers. But I don't like them (I bet George would have been shouting my glory if I did use it though he loves them!)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Brown ground beef heavy saucepan, stirring to break up ground beef (If you want onions I would brown them at the same time. Drain well.

Add tomato paste, tomato sauce, water, Garlic and Italian seasoning and stir well to blend. (add your other veggies if you want them) Let simmer for 10 minutes to blend flavors.

Meanwhile, cook elbow macaroni as directed on package.

While macaroni is cooking, combine cream cheese and milk in medium bowl. Cook in microwave on medium power for 2-3 minutes, stirring once halfway through cooking. Remove from microwave and stir with wire whisk until sauce thickens and blends to form a smooth sauce.

Drain noodles and add to cream cheese sauce along with sour cream and 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese; stir to combine.

In a square baking dish, place all of cream cheese mixture. Top with all of the ground beef mixture Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes.
Add Mozerella and Parmesan cheese to taste
Bake another 5-10 minutes until Bubbly

If you wish to freeze this dish, add 1T of cornstarch into your cream cheese and milk (Before you mix it with the noodles)

Monday, May 25, 2009

Easy Leftover Chili Cheese smokies!

My 20 minute lunch!

You will need:

1 box of your favorite mac and cheese (I prefer Kraft Deluxe or Velveeta for this recipe)
Leftover Chili (Or a small can)
Leftover Corn
Little Smokies

Cook mac and cheese, cook Smokies... Reheat corn and Chili....

Mix all ingrediants!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Completely not sure what to do here...

We are desperately trying to Potty Train Will. He refuses to poop in the toilet though. Completely stubborn.
I can sit him on the toilet every 15 minutes and still he will go in his underwear. He will Pee, won't poop. When I ask him where we are supposed to Poop, he tells me in the Potty. He can re-iterate but he still just don't do it.

Finally after weeks of desperation, I called Momma crying. I just don't know what to do. She said if he is able to tell me where to go, and has been using the bathroom, maybe its time to start punishing him for pooping in his underwear. I tried it.

Now he is afraid to tell me when when he has an accident. We just asked him if he had to go and he completely started freaking out on us. I had to drag him in there. Turns out he pooped.

I am completely lost as to what I should do, and now I feel awful.

Just Another Day in Paradise

Well its 11 am. I couldn't fall asleep last night until after 2 and then from 2-7 I was up and down all night coughing- No Hacking out a lung. At 7 when my now 3 year old woke up I gave up trying to sleep. Something good came out of it. He told me he had to potty (That is a BIG thing for us) About 9:00 my husband couldn't sleep anymore so he stayed up with will and let me have a nap. Now its 11, we've all eaten, George is on the Xbox. Will is racing cars on his Hot Wheels track. The Cat is attacking the cars (She also left me some wrapping paper in the hallway for a present). None of us are dressed. Just another day in Paradise here. Its nice just to relax and be us for a while.

Saturday, May 2, 2009


Cutting the TV off from my son daily is not an easy thing to do! I love him dearly, but I think a 3 year old should spend more time playing then on the TV. I am thinking that once G, goes back to work Wednesday, there will be no TV at all in the house until my son can handle the responsiblity of playing. I do play with him, but he thinks if the TV is not on I am to play with him 100% of the time and that is not the case.

*Sighs* I wish he had some body to play with.

Any tips?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Just because I can, Here is a laugh

I stumbled across this and found it funny. I'd better be careful posting though, because some places (like my former gas station employers, would expect these kinds of sales from everyone and still having lots of customers)

A young guy from Alberta moves to Vancouver and goes to a big "everything under one roof" department store looking for a job.
The Manager says, "Do you have any sales experience?"
The kid says "Yeah. I was a salesman back in Alberta ."
Well, the boss liked the kid and gave him the job. "You start tomorrow. I'll come down after we close and see how you did. His first day on the job was rough, but he got through it. After the store was locked up, the boss came down. "How many customers bought something from you today?
The kid says "one".
The boss says "Just one? Our sales people average 20 to 30 customers a day. How much was the sale for?"
The kid says "$101,237.65".
The boss says "$101,237.65? What the heck did you sell?"
The kid says, "First, I sold him a small fish hook. Then I sold him a medium fishhook. Then I sold him a larger fishhook. Then I sold him a new fishing rod. Then I asked him where he was going fishing and he said down the coast, so I told him he was going to need a boat, so we went down to the boat department and I sold him a twin engine Chris Craft. Then he said he didn't think his Honda Civic would pull it, so I took him down to the automotive department and sold him that 4x4 Expedition."
The boss said "A guy came in here to buy a fish hook and you sold him a BOAT and a TRUCK?"
The kid said "No, the guy came in here to buy Tampons for his wife, and I said, "Dude, your weekend's shot. You should go fishing."

Monday, April 27, 2009

In the News: Lesbian Couple Legally Married in Iowa Ceremony

We interrup the regularly scheduled entry on Our Potty Training Adventures for a more serious, more important post based on a article I read.
You can visit the actual Article here
And if like me, when you come across these kinds of posts, you would rather just get the jist of it... I included that too!

DES MOINES, Iowa – A lesbian couple has apparently become the first same-sex couple to legally wed in Iowa since a court ruling took effect legalizing gay marriage.The couple was allowed to bypass the state's three-day waiting period before licenses are considered valid.Officials have reported same-sex couples applying for marriage licenses in several counties.Iowa became the third state to allow gay marriage when the state Supreme Court ruled April 3 that a ban on same-sex marriage violated the Iowa Constitution.

There has been alot of same-sex marriage in the news lately. It seems that everywhere you look some state is either trying to legalize it or ban it.

Frankly I don't see the big deal. The reason I bring this up to you is because I am completely horrified by the responses I read to the article above. The responses to the article and I am sure to other such articles seemed out of line to me. These comments are the kinds of comments that make me double think our freedom of Speech. I do love our freedom of speech, I just don't get why people use this freedom in ways that just disgrace them selves. However, this is not the point of this blog. Moving on

It seems that not too long ago interracial relationships were the huge thing. In the 60's many states had it banned until the Supreme Court finally ruled on the manner. I am young still, but I remember it still being controversal to an extent growing up. It was something talked about in whispers. Today in certain areas there are ignorant people against it, but vocalizing against interracial relationships is now taboo.

I bring this up to say, in the 60's I am fairly certain many of the same arguements were being made, including the sanctity of marriage, the God is against it, and the Its not right/natural arguements.

It is time to quit those arguements (I will be bringing you a post on the sanctity of marriage later).

The Bottom line is: Why does it matter to you if two other people get married? Why is this a debate in the United States of America? A Country that prides itself on freedom for everyone. I read in a bulletin a friend posted (it made me laugh but is right on the money) So this brings me to a moving vision in my head of our brave soldiers running into battle with our flag screaming"FREEDOM FOR ALL!!! Unless you are homosexual or not a christian
"what?!?!?! is that not what happens???

For a country that is fighting for freedom for others all around the world, we are doing a poor job of it here at home. Bravo, to the States that have had the Balls, the decency, and the courage to allow same-sex marriage. My hats are off to you!

How is it possible that two other people can ruin the sanctity of MY marriage? (unless those two other people were somehow involved in adultry with me or my spouse) As my friend put it in her bulletin *I CANNOT say this any better myself*
I don't care if the person down the street marries the tree in his backyard; it has absolutely no affect on my marriage whatsoever. My marriage is special and sacred because of how we (my husband and myself) nurture and value it--not because of what other people do or don't do.

Regardless how you feel on the issue, Is it our right to interfere with other people's happiness?
The Declaration of Independence itself says: We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

the pursuit of Happiness. What exactly does that mean? To me it means that each of us has the right to be happy (so long as we are not interfering with another's right to be happy). If two people getting married affects your happiness, what does that say about you? How much confidence do you have in your self? How happy could you have been to begin with?

Many people take a religous approach to why same-sex marriages should be banned. To them I say, My Bible tells me not to judge, for those that need reminding here are two separate scriptures that tell us this same thing

Matthew 7:1-Judge not, that ye be not judged.
Luke 6:37-Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:

By banning same-sex marriage, by stubbornly opposing it, you are judging it. This does not seem Christian like to me.

We are all entitled to our opinions, however, how we feel about something and how we act on it are two different things. There are days as a parent when I just feel like giving up, there are times when I feel the need to hit something or someone. Yet I do not act upon those feelings, I do not express those feelings. I exhibit self control. This is the socially, and morally acceptable thing to do. We may not like the idea of same-sex marriage, but it is not our place to judge others, or to deny someone of thier happiness.

Stay tuned, Sometime this week, I will be posting on why the sanctity of marriage is already ruined, and all about our Potty Training Adventures and Misadventures

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

What I am learning about Imagination, play, and problem solving

As an early Childhood student, I know all about the importance of play. It has been continually drilled in me since day one. (Something I assure you I am eternally grateful to my instructors for) I am able to take any activity a child might do and spout out several concepts a child might be learning. However, reading and hearing something is completely different than experiencing it first hand.

I have heard many a tale about growing up outside, with very few toys and having to entertain yourself. In fact Daddy locked us out of the house. While I mostly read on the porch my two brothers played throughout the neighborhood. You had to use your imaginations to be entertained. The bat you had became a million other things. There were always new games to learn and new rules attached to old games.

Now take a walk into the toy section of your local Walmart, target, or any place that has toys. You will find so many specialized toys. Most of the toys serve one purpose, to limit the imaginations of our children. The toys are stemmed from TV shows mostly or they have one specific use. Even though there are many educational toys out there, how many ways can you use it? Almost everything requires batteries and those that don't are rarely touched. When you are done with that go to the stationary, office or Art area of the store. There you will find coloring books that all you do is use one marker and it colors the page for you.

While those coloring books are great for the times we are out and I don't need to haul 10 markers with 10 caps, or I don't need to worry about him coloring on the chair at the doctor's office. I know several parents that restrict their children's art solely to those. In what way is that encouraging your child to imagine? What masterpiece will your child possibly create? Instead you will gain a picture that is just like 10 million others out there.

I remember watching my brother draw growing up (and he was a good artist) Many times he had just a pencil and paper (remember we were locked outside most of the day) He learned to use different shades of grey to color his pictures. What he really did was learn to be crafty and resourceful. Or, if you want to look at the bigger picture, PROBLEM SOLVING SKILLS.

I have been interning with a local preschool program this semester. In the 3 short months I have worked in the 3 year old class I have been regularly amazed by the advances and discoveries the children have made through playing. One such example, playing with bristle blocks the children have created glasses, people, dogs, rabbits, cars, trains, hammers and drills.
Yes, they still make houses, but they took something very basic and found new interesting ways to use it. Out of the class there are really a few that can do it, the rest imitate the new ways to use the same toy. In fact the same child who showed me the glasses, went on to show me the rabbit. Watching the other children imitate the first and play in new ways shows me that these children WANT to try different things. They don't want to play the same way with the same thing every day. Back to the toys in the store, most of the toys do not encourage this.

Sadly, what many of today's children are starting to lack is problem solving skills. They are used to everything being done for them, used to playing with everything a certain way. It does not seem like an issue now, however the longer they go the more apparent it will be that they lack these skills.

Even many young adults in my generation suffer the same problem for the same reasons. When money is tight most of my generation will resort to the dollar menu or hamburger helper regularly. While I do this from time to time, I also have learned how to create meals from things in my cupboard, and to take a few cheap ingredients and create delicious dinners.

So what is the point of all this? This week is the week of the Young child. It is also National Turn off week. So let's encourage our children's imaginations, and develop thier problem solving skills by trying some of these things:
Turn off the Tube
  1. Purchase basic toys for your children (keep a few in stock for birthdays too)
  2. Find new ways to play with the toys we have
  3. Play with your child
  4. Take some of the old newspaper and turn it into a hat, kite, or boat.
  5. Play a game (I will be posting on the importance of games soon)

Post some of your other suggestions here as well!

Check out some of these resources for more information

Monday, April 20, 2009

Parenthood continues to be the most exhausting, dramatic, tiring, slaving, painful, rewarding experience of my life.

A perfect example is something I wrote a year and a half ago (thus making my son 1 1/2 yrs at the time)

Nothing changes lifes as often and as well as parenting. You go from being a unique individual with likes, dislikes, a sense of style, a taste for fine cuisine (however you may define it), the ability to sleep in all day. You also can call your heart your own. When you become a parent, that all changes in ways unimaginanble. Your vocabulary even changes. The older your child gets the more you find yourself baffled by the mysteries of life. It used to be the biggest mystery in your life was who would be the next American Idol. Now there are even bigger, stranger mysteries. My son is little still. He's a year and a half and I know I have a lot more to learn. My vocabulary consists of: No, let's go Bye-Bye, Where is your cup?, Turn the TV off, Stay away from Dog food, did you stink?, I love you, Give kisses. I expected these, what I did not realize is that "Why, How? Should I even ask?" Would become a regular part of my vocabulary.
This morning, when I greet my smiling son in the crib. He has on a sweater, stretch pants, socks and sandles. Does anyone care to guess who had him last night? Yes, My husband. When he brought my son to the store to visit me, all he was wearing was a diaper and a t-shirt, yet now he is fully dressed and wearing SOCKS AND SANDLES. when I ask why, my husband simply replied, that he had to have them. This is a great example of Toddlerhood for any new parents. This is a world that your child is the sultan of. Its a big giant game that only your toddler knows the rules of and yes they change all the time. Some days he insists on being fully dressed, somedays he wants the blue shoes, other days the green. Somedays he won't wear any at all.
I get over the whole socks and sandles. Later after I have dropped my son off and come home to grab my insurance card, I find his hat. Outside. On the street. I don't even want to know.
These are just a few examples. Other mysteries I often encounter, Why will you eat it one day but not the next? Why does the TV have to be on? Why do you have to sleep on top of everything in the bed? Why do you insist on wearing socks but get mad when there are feet on your PJ's? How is it when I put brand new socks on you, at the end of the day only one is covered in dirt?
I am sure if I sit here long enough I will come up with a million more mysteries and I am just getting started. But for now these will do. Feel free to comment on your own.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

What I am Learning about House Guests

Guests, like fish, begin to smell after three days.
~Benjamin Franklin

Recently we have made some changes to my household. My brother has moved back home with Momma. I have split feelings about the move but regardless of them we are learning to readjust as a family.

My Husband has been a lot less tense lately; I don’t know if it’s the vacation he took, or the change. I have had the opportunity to watch him and Will interact more frequently. Will relishes in the extra time he is spending with Daddy. Will is starting to imitate him. I got treated to the only showing of the two of them dancing to “Can’t Touch This” G had Will telling me “It’s Hammer Time” all morning. It’s been a while since I laughed so hard.

While I love my family dearly, and I have always been willing to go far to help out the few family and friends I have. It is nice to be just us alone in our home. I had forgotten how it felt. There are two negative things about it though, first, it is much like starting all over again as we redefine our routines, and second we have to use a sitter more often.

I have learned that no matter
- How much you care for your house guests
- How long they stay with you
- What the contribute to the household
- How comfortable you are with them
A house guest causes more stress than you realize. Its impossible to know what stress your home is under until after the fact.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

What I'm Learning about Strawberry Pie and Parenting

I love children! I'm not just saying this because I have the cutest Toddler. Before I continue, I have to tell you a Real Life Will Story (I like the way that sounds.)

My Almost 3 year old was highly upset at me. You see I had the audacity of limiting the amount of TV he watches! Yes I cut off my Toddler's TV time! He was in the middle of basically telling me I was going to turn on the TV. I was trying to get him to play. Well His yelling and my finally ignoring him, led to his throat starting to hurt him. He wanted a drink. Well at this same time I noticed a stink. SO I told him to go get a diaper while I got his drink. My wonderful Toddler informed me that He was NOT getting a diaper. He did not need a diaper. And put his hands over his chest and turned around to walk away and walked right into the corner of the computer desk. He's got a pretty good mark to show it. After crying a minute, he brought me his diaper. We changed it and I asked him if he still wanted a drink. Well he is still upset with me, so he informs me that No, He does not want a drink. That he can't drink. And turns back around and marches off. He nearly hit the same corner. He marched straight to his bedroom and got his blankets. He sat down with them in the walkway behind the couch. He sat there for 10 minutes with his arms folded (While I essentially ignored him) until he fell asleep on the floor. He showed me alright.

Back to the start. I really do love children. I am in Early Childhood, I want to work with children, but I don't know how yet. (I have got to get moving on that I am not far from graduating) Something has been heavy on my heart lately though. That is foster parenting. We'll have our spare bedroom back soon. I want to set it up as a foster room. I requested information on it and I was really surprised at how quickly the lady at DSS got back to me! Very Pleasantly Surprised. She is mailing me information today so that G and I can look at the information and decide if it is what we are truly ready to do.

The only thing he asks is that we don't take any serious cases. He deals with a lot of runaways. Certain homes specialize in therapeutic care or something and he is constantly on calls to those homes. He says its always the same couple of houses and always different children. I understand he deals enough with it at work, not wanting to bring it home. I told him that sadly, all the children entering the foster system will have some baggage. But I still want to look into it.

I just feel that since G and I won't be having more children for a few years, and that I have so much in my heart to offer, I want to put it to good use. We'll have a spare room, even though he wants to convert it into his Xbox room.

Right now we are just getting information and praying. I can never cease praying on it.

Speaking of praying. Not too long ago I had no clue how to pray with my Toddler. I knew that I wanted to raise my child to know about God, Jesus, the Bible and everything they have to offer. I want my son to be strong in faith and inspiration to others. So I did what I always do when I am clueless. I ask others, and I research. I want to share with you what I found.

This article, Praying with your Toddler, Is an inspirational article about one parents journey introducing prayer to her children. It really touched me and gave me an idea of how to start. I have to say that since my son and I started to pray he really enjoys it. Now he even starts his own prayers when playing. He is also much better behaved during prayer at church. A few times he has caught others not closing their eyes and called them out on it. We've been praying together maybe a month.

We just this week started adding Bedtime Bible stories to our routine. We have an older version without many pictures. Each story takes 2 minutes to read. Perfect for that squirrelly Little one in your life. We are 4 stories into it and he is starting to stay still and listen. We will start asking simple questions soon. I am glad that someone blessed me with the book. It is an excellent way to teach him appropriate lessons from the Bible!

Now to move on. My In Laws have been layed on my heart lately. They have a lot on thier plates lately. I wanted to do something to cheer them up. That's when Christy posted her Strawberry Pie recipe. It looked perfect. I headed over to Food Lion and Strawberries were on sale! So I got to work making two of them. Well as it turned out no one in my house wanted any. (They don't know what they are missing.) However, the Pies were very much appreciated at my In Laws. It was Devine! I suggest you head over there and check it out. Thank you so much Christy, you have no idea how much you helped make someone's night! It really is the little things that make the biggest blessing.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

What I am learning about Organization/Freezer Cooking

Southern Plate is having a save money week and there are two posts about Major Freezer Cooking that have me inspired. I realized the biggest key to all of this is planning.

So I went to work. First I had to think back at what my typical dinners were so I could make a 2 week meal plan
Before I share this information, please remember that I am just learning about real cooking and I have 0 creativity when it comes to food.
Here are some foods that my family typically ate before I discovered Southern Plate
  • Hamburger Helper 2-3 times a cycle
  • Spaghetti-weekly sometimes Biweekly
  • Hamburgers/Gravy 1-2 cycle
  • Frozen Salisbury Steaks
  • Frozen Turkey Slices
  • Frozen Cheesy Chicken Skillet Meal
  • Pizza
  • Chicken Nuggets and Mac/Cheese
  • Slop (Awesomely Cheap Meal I will never give up)
  • Ravioli
  • Italian Chicken (1 a month)
  • Taco Night
  • BLT Night
As you can see, life was pretty dull...

Here are some meals I have added since my search to spice things up
  • Buffalo Chicken Wraps
  • Beanie Weenies (BBQ Pork and Beans with Hot Dogs)
Meals from Southern Plate
  • Taco Pizza
  • Taco Casserole (Its the meal I will be trying this week)
  • Pizza Subs (She calls them rolls)
  • Mac and Cheese Bake
  • Melt In Your Mouth Doughnuts (Saturday Morning)
italics are really fast meals (20 minutes or so)

I only try 1 new recipe each cycle... So As you can see I have been dramatically building our Meal List. DH is so happy to be seeing Hamburger Helper *almost* eliminated from the cubboard. Now Will, He's a different story... The kid could live on nothing but Peanut Butter Sandwiches. But hey he's almost three!

So I decided what I wanted to eat for the next two weeks (Goodness this is becoming harder and harder to do!)

I Planned which of my recipes can be cooked in large quantities at the same amount of time and frozen. Looking At my Meal Plan for the next two weeks (Starting Tuesday) I learned
  • the Taco Pizza Recipe (SP) can make two pizzas and I can freeze one with very little extra work (Just spreading the ingredients on an extra pizza)
  • I am going to be trying out a Taco Casserole Recipe (SP) This seems to make a lot... I should be able to get three meals out of it and it looks and sounds absolutely Fabulous!
  • I already make a good Beanie Weenie recipe... I am going to double it (No extra work) and try to freeze half.
My crew doesn't like to repeat meals a lot in the two week period, so I will be using half of this on the next pay period.

I made a complete meal list for this cycle and then I made a Shopping List.

The easiest way to do this is to have an electronic Cookbook. You can use any word processor or access works great. When you find a recipe you like add it to your cook book. But really any cook book will work, you just will hand copy ingredients.

When you are ready to make your grocery list you can copy all of the ingredients into excel.
I am pretty good at excel so I was able to chart everything and get it to total up my quantities. If you are not comfortable with it, You can do the same thing by hand making a graph.

I'll include a picture tomorrow.

I like using this list because I am less likely to forget anything (As I always do) With the list being on Excel I can just keep adding to it. When I total up my quantities, I will just ignore any item that have a 0 next to it. I also added other things I use that I don't use for dinner such as bread, milk, breakfast/lunch foods.

The great part about using a computerized list is that you can change it with little work!

I am hoping that by freezing meals that I can cook in bulk easily I will start to have a small stock pile of meals ready to go. As I keep doing this I will start to cut my grocery bill down because I will have enough that I can focus on buying things I use when it is on sale rather than biweekly. I also will spend less time cooking daily!

Tips to take this further
  • Look in your circulars/Coupons and check for sales. You can make a note of these on your grocery list next to the items.
  • If you use Excel, include what store you will purchase at. You can sort your list by store when you are finished.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Frequently Used Abbreviations

I realized that I have a tendency to shorten everything I write.

Here is a list of commonly used abbreviations and what they mean.
Check Back as I will update this regularly with anything else I come up with.

DH-Dear (or Darn) husband
G-My Husband
LEO-Law Enforcement Officer
NC-North Carolina
PD-Police Dept.
PP-Pay Period/ Cycle/ AKA, the 2 weeks I must plan meals for each time
S4W-Simply 4 women, a message board site I regularly frequent and absolutely love

Getting Started!

Right Now our family of 3 adults, 1 toddler and pets lives off of one small income! My Mission is to save as much money as possible while learning how to make delicious dishes that everyone of my picky eaters will enjoy.

I just got my deep freezer, and I have yet to organize my cabinets and clear out enough stuff to have a stock pile of anything. So I almost am starting from scratch here.

Last Paycheck alone I spent somewhere in the neighborhood of 160 for the four of us... For two weeks. (I completely have to guess this number because I am always forgetting something)

I rationalize this partly because of the truck load meat sale at Pigglly Wiggly I was sooo lucky to catch. I got Chicken Nuggets $1 a pound. Boneless Pork Chops $1.50 a pound. I don't even remember what else I got. I just know that those two items were in bulk, and I have alot of pork Chops.

We were also given some deer meat from a fellow LEO. This and a few of DH's Totino Supreme Pizzas makes up my entire stock pile!

I am tired of barely having enough groceries to last me one pay period. So I started a Mission to Save money and Stock up.

Just in Time for all of that, Christy, at southern Plate is having her Save Money Eat Better Week! I am so excited for it! I am learning alot!

If you haven't yet Check out her site at Southern Plate. She has been a real blessing to my family. (DH loved her Taco Pizza.) Her recipes are really easy to follow and they come with pictures!! (This is perfect for me!)

From her site I have stumbled onto Southen Savers... They Spell things out really clearly for a newcomer! So I love it.

I have learned alot in the last week. But If I told you everything I learned you'd be pretty confused, (It doesn't all make sense in my Noggin yet) So I will share what I have practiced and how it works for me!

Tip of the Day!
Save Coupons! All of them. Don't use them the first chance you get. Wait, things come on sale and then all of the sudden you pay next to nothing! To Help me with this I have started to categorize the loose coupons I do have. I created an excel document that I can easily search. When I check out the sales paper I can search for coupons I already have. I also check Southern Savers regulary since she does the same using recent coupons in the paper. I cannot do this yet, because I don't have any recent coupons from the paper.

*Mental note: Must organize the coupons or find a new way of storing them so I can find them when I need them*

I am really excited about this journey! Please come back and visit as I share what I do and how it worked for me!