Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Just for Fun...

Monkey and I dance to this all the time and this song just gets me so PUMPED :)
(Pretty cute to see a toddler get so excited about a song like this, too!)

I love this:
I tried driving solo but I finished on "E" ...

Spreading the "Tackle it" Love!

I've been at my mom's for the past few days and I got to tackle her pantry!! (Is this normal to be so excited to actually want to tackle someone else's home to fuel my organization hunger? PROBABLY NOT, lol)

I always tease her, "Mom, how are you going to know you have enough pasta if its on the bottom shelf with the chips?" After more than a few comments, she finally said the magic words, "Well, get in there, girl!" :)

I am so insanely jealous that she has a closet pantry. We used to in our old house and I miss it! I had been wanting to tackle it for forever because I wanted to put an over-the-door shoe organizer on that pantry door! She was so excited..not as much as me of course, but again, I'm an odd duck when it comes to this stuff ;)

So here we go..
(It's not an actual "before" shot, because I realize that the shelf with the cans was already started. Whoopsie.)


Oh, and how I adore this can organizer. Won't fit in my dinky cabinents :(

Isn't this awesome!?

I spread the clear glass container love, too. Something so crisp, clean, and organized about kitchen staples being in clear glass containers. (sigh. love.) Didn't remember to get a pic, though. Hmph.

Oh, and guess what my mom purchased? A LABEL MAKER!! The disease is spreading!!

Toddler Time

"Homemade" Crayons!
This is super easy and gives new life to crayon bits!

Just take all your crayon bits, remove the paper, and arrange in your tins. You could get really creative with your color mixtures, but I made it pretty simple considering it was the first try. Note: I do not recommend "cheapo" crayons. It may have just been a fluke, but once they were molded, they didn't color anymore. So, stock up on the cheap Crayolas while you can!

You could use any shaped muffin tin or mold pan, I just happened to score a heart shaped one at the dollar store!

Pop in the oven at about 200 degrees.. just keep an eye on them! Once melted, set out until dried and molded. Mine popped out easily once cooled, so you shouldn't have any problems.

Perfect for little one's hands. I sprang for the Tadoodles a while back and trust me, they were not worth the money!

I will be using these for goody-bags and holidays. Very original and creative and I can't think of a kid who wouldn't love these!

Wordless Wednesday


I am so proud of my girl!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


I am grateful for being a stay at home mommy because:

I know what "go go" means (Diego); what "see see" means (Jesus); what "I wanna wead" means (our bible story time).

I get "monkey kisses" anytime I want.

I get to blow bubbles and make her squeal with such innocent joy.

I get to watch her hair glisten in the sun as "we" water our plants together.

I can lay on the floor like a kid myself and color with my girl.

I have a little buddy that loves to follow me and "help".

I know what my daughter is eating, seeing, and hearing.

I get to dry my daughter's tears. I get to hold her hand. She will always know that I will always be there whenever she needs me.

Bathtime is rarely rushed :)

I am raising my daughter.


I (almost) always have an empty laundry basket.

I can listen to praise and worship music all day if I want to. (and I do!)

I keep a clean home where memories are made and fun is had on a daily basis

I get to wear an apron as my uniform ;)
I now see God's miracles and beauty in the eyes of a child.

I have a deeper gratitude and love for my mother more and more each day.

None of these could be accomplished if I was working outside the home. Money may be tight without the extra income, but in my life, I could never put a price on this:

This is what I live for. God has called me to do the best job in the world, which isn't a "job" at all.

Monday, July 21, 2008


Here are the rules:
1. link the person(s) who tagged you
2. Mention the rules on your blog
3. Tell about 6 unspectacular quirks of yours
4. Tag 6 following bloggers by linking them
5. Leave a comment on each of the tagged blogger’s blogs letting them know they’ve been tagged.

Here we go!

1. I highlight, make notes, and use sticky tabs in every book or magazine I read. It helps me absorb it more ;)

2. I'm a containerizing/labelizing junkie.

3. My toes are never still. They have a mind of their own and make my mood a dead giveaway. Hubbie will often ask if I'm "stressin" because they will stick straight up in the air. (even when I don't realize they are doing it!)

4. You know I'm annoyed when I scratch the back of my head/hair. Mom does it, too. Weird.

5. I have no (nil, zero) patience for people who smack their food!!!!

6. I vacuum AT LEAST twice a day.

I was tagged by Sis at http://mommyminded.blogspot.com/

Okay, here are the people I will tag....

1. Sarah at Fiddledeedee http://fiddledeedeeblog.blogspot.com/

2. Trina at Fabulously Frugalicious http://fabulouslyfrugalicious.blogspot.com/

3. Tasha at Comical Coupon Cents http://comicalcouponcents.blogspot.com/

4. Annie at Me and My Three Boys http://indecisivemomoftwo.blogspot.com/
5. Elizabeth at Our Small Town Blessings http://smalltownblessings.blogspot.com/

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday's Sermon

I am going to be posting weekly what our Sunday's sermon was about in hopes to share His Word and how I'll be applying it to my life, so you can, too.

I also thought it may help to give you all a little something to read on Sunday without any participation, as Sundays are the day of rest, and the time to spend time with our families!

Today we learned about fearing the Lord. Something I never really and truly understood until it was explained like this: You cannot respect the Lord until you fear Him.
Like it says in the Bible, the ones who actually were before God fell to their knees in honor and awe. This cannot be accomplished without fearing Him. (Otherwise, you would just be like hey God, what's up, lol) We learned that some people are initially saved by the fear of being sent to Hell alone. And that's okay. I personally came to know Him because I love Him and I am grateful for all the marvelous things He has done. This is the same way I feel about my parents. Some children do what they are told because they have to or because they are scared of the consequences. I honestly was not that kind of child. (Seriously!) I legitimately loved my parents and didn't want to do anything to disappoint them. I respected them. But, had I not feared their disappointment or value their opinion and love, I would not have respected them so. Sounds simple enough, but very profound when thinking of how I live my life for Him.

Which brings me to the next point:
"The fear of the Lord will affect our deliverance and our worship."
This one hit me like a ton of bricks and something I am really struggling with lately. In church, I do not feel comfortable singing His praises, but my poor daughter must be getting really tired of me singing to all my praise and worship cds in the car, and in our home 24/7! See the problem? Where is my fear (and respect, honor, and awe) in showing Him my whole heart when I sing publicly? Am I too worried about what people are thinking? Am I worried that someone might hear my terrible singing voice? Yes, yes. But that doesn't interfere with being "myself" at home. Why? Because, I am not fearing Him the way I should or these things would not matter to me, no matter where I am.

Which is no coincidence that the next point is this: "We will have a strong confidence in our life by our fear of the Lord." (This would be my AHA! moment, lol) All of my insecurities and worries should not be interfering with praising and worshipping Him! If I fully fear and love Him, again, these things should not matter. I will try to remind myself of this when I have money worries or things just don't "go my way" That strong confidence I have in fearing and respecting Him will remind me that HE IS HERE. He is always here with me and it will all be okay. I really need to put this into application, because it couldn't be more true. I also need to apply this confidence when it comes to spreading His word and being a "vocal" disciple for Him. I struggle with this and I know it is part of my Christian responsibility. (Hopefully "blogging" this is a good start!)

Next, "the fear of God is a great restraint for Evil". Evil of course, meaning anything against God. This to me, in a nutshell, means that while we have man's law, we also have God's law, and the latter should be feared because of eternity. It also reminds me of the angel on one shoulder and devil on the other. 'Nuff said.

"The fear of God will produce purity." If I know God and I know what He expects from me, and I fear Him, I will live a life that is pleasing to Him. (Kinda goes along with being a good son or daughter to your parents if you fear and respect them!)

"The fear of God will affect your whole life." The last and my favorite. So very true. Fearing Him will affect my thoughts, actions, the words that come out of my mouth, how I live, what kind of wife, mother, daughter I am, the list goes on. Fearing His disappointment in me, fearing His judgment, and loving, honoring and respecting Him, and being totally in awe of Him will AFFECT my whole life.

Further and similar reading:
Romans 3:18-31
Ecclesiastes 5: 1-7
Ephesians 5:21
Psalm 34:7

I have to acknowledge my wonderful pastor, who does not read my blog, but through him some of these wonderful points were made.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Then Sings my Soul Saturday

Only Grace
Matthew West

"Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need."

Hebrews 4:16

Friday, July 18, 2008

Cooking for Kids

Tonight I made monkey Mickey Mouse Pizza. I totally cheated and used a box mix for pizza crust (pressed for time) but check back next week, and I will have a whole wheat recipe for you!
It's pretty simple, just roll out your dough and use a small biscuit cutter for the ears. You could use anything small and circular. I used a cup for the face.

Press the ears into the face and viola! A cute little Mickey Mouse pizza!

She was so excited! It made me a little sad to have to cut it up, lol :(

I also made "fried" green beans by sauteing green beens in italian bread crumbs and EVOO Spray. Not totally healthy, but also, not fried. It fooled her, and she hates green beans! (I tried them and they were very yummy!)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Toddler Time

Another Toddler Time post for this week since I just got the pics from last week's activity and they turned out so, so cute!!

Meet my little sister, Hanlee, by the way :)

I hit the Dollar Tree and got foam shaped flowers (stickers), foam door knob hangers, and foam letters (also stickers) and sat the girls down with their supplies and a muffin tin and the fun began!

We talked about the colors and I worked with Monkey on matching the colors in each of the muffin tins.

So, $3.00 for an activity they had a blast with, an opportunity to work on our colors, hand-eye coordination, and memories and keepsakes that we will forever cherish!

Thrifty Thursday

I got lucky once again with Kroger Manager Specials! And a plus, most of them are organic!

Here's what I got:

Organic Barley-(Closeout) $1.50
(This stuff is $5.00 at our health-food store!)

4 boxes Organic Macaroni and (White) Cheese- .77/each
regularly $1.99

Earth's Best Organic Cheese Crackers-$1.00
regularly $2.00

2 Bags of Cheddar All Natural Kettle Chips-$1.19
regularly $3.19 (WOW!)

2 Containers of Buitoni Light Alfredo Sauce .50
2 Container of Buitoni Marinara Sauce .50
(I don't know what these are regularly but I'm guessing too high since I never buy them!)

Nothing I purchased expires earlier than mid August. Not bad! :)

Keep an eye out for Manager's Specials. They are so bizarre, sometimes things are already out of date and others have no reason (at least to me) to be on markdown- it's definitely hit or miss!

See what thrifty finds others are sharing this week over at Comical Coupon Cents!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

Matthew 6:6

"When you pray, go into your room. Close the door and pray to your Father, who can't be seen. He will reward you. Your Father sees what is done secretly."

Healthy Comfort Food?

Mmm.. Mashed potatoes with cheese, sour cream and fried chicken. Sounds great, doesn't it? How about if I told you there was a way to make it and it was actually healthy? Even better, right? Well, you're gonna think I'm crazy, but please keep reading :)

I kept hearing that you could make "mock" mashed potatoes by mashing up steamed cauliflower and chesse. (Did I lose you, yet? lol) Lots of ladies swear by it, so I decided to give it a go.

And, yep thats good ole' plain yogurt you see. It tastes just like sour cream! My version of fried chicken was a cut-up Boca meatless chicken patty. So, so delicious. (And cheap!!) My body felt like it was cheating big time!

It was a crazy evening, so no finished pic, but if its any conciliation and you still don't think it would work, my (very picky) 18 month old gobbled it up!

I might add that when you "mash" your cauliflower, you will literally have to mash it to death ;)

Yummy Scents!

I will never buy a candle again! Monkey and I had oranges for a snack today and I thought I'd simmer the peel in water with a little cinnamon and it smells GREAT! Better than any candle or warmer I have ever purchased. The scent filled my entire house. I highly recommend this--it really works. Just simmer on low and add water as needed. YUM!!

Preserving Memories

I have come up with a few creative ways to preserve my daughter's artwork and I wanted to share them with you! In doing this, though, I am hoping some of you have some ideas to share, as I am losing space on my refridgerator! ;)

A few weeks ago Monkey picked me "my first flower" and luckily I got a great picture but she quickly shredded it up. So, later when she picked me another one, I held on to it for dear life! So here's what I've done:
I got a frame that matched my kitchen (Dollar Store, of course) and I "laminated" it by taping it across a plain white index card. I pressed the flower down pretty firmly to keep it from getting "icky" under the tape. I also put the date on the back.

Another thing I've done is kept a notebook for her to doodle in. I purchased a matted frame that holds 3 pictures and just cut to size a few of the doodles she made and framed it in her little classroom.

I went to our local print shop and laminated a some of her scribbles and came home and created a few gifts. Big Daddy's (Grandpa) birthday is right around the corner so I made a bookmark out of one of them and I know he will just be tickled!

So inexpensive, yet priceless!
I would love to hear some of your budget-friendly ideas!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

When You Thought I Wasn't Looking

When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you hang up my first painting on the refrigerator, and I wanted to paint another one.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you feed a stray cat, and I thought it was good to be kind to animals.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw you make my favorite cake for me, and I knew that little things are special things.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I heard you say a prayer, and I believed there is a God I could always talk to.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I felt you kiss me goodnight, and I felt loved.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I saw that you cared, and I wanted to be everything that I could be.

When you thought I wasn't looking, I LOOKED....and wanted to say thanks for all the things I saw when you thought I wasn't looking.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Homemade Cooking

Whole Wheat Oatmeal Applesauce Waffles

You will need:
1 1/2 Cups of whole wheat flour
1 Cup of quick cook oats
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon (I used a tad more than that!)
pinch of salt (I omitted)
2 eggs, slightly beaten
2 Cups of milk
1/4 Cup and 2 Tbsp. oil (I used chunky style applesauce to cut the fat)
2 Tbsp. brown sugar

In a medium size bowl, sift together flour, oats, baking powder, salt and cinnamon.

In another bowl, stir eggs, milk, oil (or apple sauce), and brown sugar.

Add wet mixture to dry mixture and stir until blended.

Makes 7 waffles

Also, I froze the remaining waffles to be able to pop in the toaster on busy mornings. (Great tip, Megan!)

*I topped with additional chunky style apple sauce for more flavor--

Meet my food critic: Ella Beth, a/k/a "Monkey" :)

MMMM!! The few crumbs that were left told me this recipe was a success!!

Toddler Time

Tonight Monkey and I made a Froot-Loop Necklace. I thought for the most part I'd be doing most of the "work", but she was a great little helper! We "chatted" about the different colors and everytime I asked for red, she knew which ones were red! I am so proud of her! This will be a great activity to get her more and more familiar with her colors.

Mommy's Little Helper

She was so excited...

and that it was edible!

All you need for this activity is Froot-Loops (or Apple Jacks, Cheerios, etc.) and string!

"The most important seed I can sow in this life is my children, and the love and knowledge that I can bestow upon them and the help I can give them."