Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Miscellany....Tuesday?

So I totally missed Miscellany Monday...oh well. I have my little cousin here for the week and we are just having lots of fun!

I'm really bored with my blog. It just doesn't look the way I want it to. I'm just not crafty enough to design my own and the ones I really like cost money. Anybody have good ideas? Or places to go for free designs? I've been to so many places, but I just haven't seen the "right one"

It's pretty hot/warm here so we've been in the water this week and will be again tomorrow! What are you all up to?!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Blessing by a blog??

I'm pretty sure those of us that blog have all had moments of, "why the heck am I doing this". I know I have...on a regular basis. I have to go back to that first month and see why and then take a look at some other blogs that made a difference for me and look over them.

I'm also pretty sure that we have all made some blogger friends that we can say without a doubt, God allowed us to find one another on here. And these blogger friends can pretty much make your day with a comment they leave, an email they send or just something they wrote on their blog.

I sit down and type away what's on my heart, hoping that maybe it might help or bless someone else...but never really thinking that through. And so when it does, it takes my breath away that God would use blogging as a source of encouragement and hope. And we're this big family spread out all over, and we have this kindred spirit among us.

There are a couple blogs I would love for you to take time and check out. There are so so so many amazing ones out there, and I follow several of them. But just for this post, I would like you to look at two different ones.
The first is Kelli's blog Living Life with E's. She's pretty much amazing. She has two adorable kids and her youngest, Emily, has Down Syndrome. They didn't find this out until after she was born. I pretty much am blown away by her. And I have learned that she is more blessed than most of us will be, because her daughter as DS. And if you don't believe me....you will after reading through her blog.

The other blog is one I just started following and am still getting the whole story on. Claire at Fast Forward Girl isn't updating it too often at the moment because....well, you just need to go check it out! :) She is an amazing example of sacrifice and love and I think you'll love her story.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Personal Revelation

I thought I'd go ahead and be vulnerable today and post my journal entry for yesterday. For me it was a small revelation, one that others may have already figured out. But I was able to break it down in a way that I hadn't before, so I wanted to share. And how thankful am I that I am typing this and not speaking it to any of your faces, because I would not be able to talk without tears streaming down my face.
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Had a good talk with God. I told him how afraid I am. Afraid of not ever being pregnant again....afraid of getting pregnant and losing another baby....afraid of getting pregnant and there being something wrong with the baby. Fear. Just plain fear all around.

Then He spoke to me. How foolish of me to not accept the gifts of peace, hope and trust that God freely gives? So many don't know God and wish they could find peace in the midst of a storm, they wish they had someone to cling to and trust. I DO know God and He offers me these things! What a fool I would be if I did not accept them, if I did not grab them with every fiber of my being and not let go?

I would be robbing myself of a fruitful life, shortchanging my family and myself.

So, I made a decision to not give in. To not dwell on it and to moment by moment trust and ask for peace and hope...believing He will be faithful to give it to me. I can't do day to day....that's not enough, I would get lost. But I can do moment to moment, each breath I take. It's a battle I have to fight and I have to win. So I will.

                                    
"I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord, be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:13

Monday, June 21, 2010

Miscellany Monday

Just found this via my friend Robin's blog! I love fun stuff like this :)

One Week 2 of Spin class....speed trials. Not so much fun

Two Jack thinks he owns the church. He thinks he can walk anywhere, get up on stage whenever he wants and play any instrument he would like. Partly our fault since he does get to do that so often. It's pretty darn cute though.

Three I'm new at this and I need to get more random...maybe next Monday will be better haha!


Miscellany Monday creator!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Soccer Sarah


There are so many amazing causes out there to support, it's never ending. There are so many amazing stories and so many examples of people sacrificing for others. I'd like to highlight one story for you, if I may! I went to church with Sarah when I was little and have known her family for years!

This is Sarah. She uses soccer to help teach about AIDS. She is a part of Grassroot Soccer and has spent the last year in South Africa with this organization. Since this is nonprofit she raised all of her funds to get herself there, so she could give some more.

Soccer is a universal language and because of that they are able to teach these kids about healthy choices, avoiding risks and through this unique format are able to teach kids about AIDS and how to help themselves prevent getting it.

There is no way I could tell her story on this post. It would take too long, and my words wouldn't do it justice! Please check out her blog below and also Grassroots website for more information!

Sarah's Blog

Grassroot Soccer

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Bed Bug Bumpers

I am so excited to share about this product! When looking for bed rails for the little man's "Big Boy Bed". I wasn't finding anything that made me real excited. Everything was institution looking, required installing and had the risk of a child falling in between the rail and the bed. They were also all made for beds with box springs (it may suprise you that most bed rails are NOT to be used unless you have a box spring) Jack's bed is a captains bed...no box spring. So, I headed to trusty Google and typed in everything I wanted and guess what popped up?! Bed Bug Bumpers! I read all the reviews, spent a LOT of time on the site and then showed it to my hubby. We both agreed this was perfect for us! So, we ordered them. I didn't know my mother-in-law had put her email address as the contact source, so I emailed them for a status on the order a couple days after it was placed. I recieved the nicest email back and it felt like I was her only customer. She asked if I was happy with the product to post a review on the site...well, I decided to blog about it as well. We LOVE these bed bug bumpers!
Picture from Bed Bug Website
First of all they are soft, so your little one can roll into them and it's just soft. They slide right under your sheets and matterss protector and they do not move! Jack can climb over them to get out, but when he's asleep there is no way he'd roll over them! And Jack is a WILD sleeper! Yesterday was his first day in his big boy bed and he did great!
These bed bumpers are way more affordable too! We put one at the end of the bed and on the sides since he's a crazy sleeper, and with shipping it was still cheaper than buying a yucky metal one from Target or Walmart.
So, if you are looking for an alternative bed rail, look no further! Another cool thing....when we travel, we just take them out from under the sheet and bring them with us! How cool is that!? Click the Bed Bug Bumper link above to check out the site and see all the other uses as well ( co-sleeping, bed dividers etc.)



Jack's bed with Bed Bug Bumpers! Sorry it's blurry :)

Friday, June 11, 2010

In Feast or Fallow: A music review of Sandra McCracken's latest album

A little over a month ago I was excited and surprised to get an email from the digital media company promoting Sandra's new album. They asked me to give a review with the understanding that I am not a musical person, but a mom, which Sandra is as well! I wanted to really take the time to listen to her album and think through my thoughts before blogging, hence the delayed post! I had not heard of Sandra before, and I'm not a big folk music fan, but I was pleasantly surprised by her album and have enjoyed adding several of the songs to my playlist.

In Feast or Fallow, the latest release by Sandra McCracken, was produced by her husband David Webb of Caedmon's Call. It is a beautiful mix of old hymns that have been revived with a new folk sound. Some of the tracks' were written by Sandra herself as well. Sandra's gentle, almost haunting voice, finds a way of making these hymns sound relevant and fresh. Her style is one I have not come across in the Christian music sector, and appreciated it's originality and the risks she took with the arrangements.

There is no chance of the word meanings getting lost amongst the music, and her objective is clear throughout the album. Simple, soft and graceful are the three words I would use to describe her entire work. The album is consistent in it's sound throughout, but there are a few that are must-haves on my playlist.
Can't Help Myself  and Sweet Sorrow are two songs that really stuck in my head for both their music content and words. Knowing that we will indeed have sorrow, but realizing that amidst it all we can't help but lift our hands up to the One who can take each moment and bring us back to joy.

So, if you're a folk music lover this album is for you. If you don't usually gravitate towards this style like me, give it a chance and I'm sure a couple of her songs will stick in your head!

Click on the above links for more information on Sandra, her new album and how to get it!

You Tube-Sandra McCracken's Channel

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Pancakes!

Mr. Jack loves pancakes. He eats them almost every morning along with eggs! I have done different mixes as well as from scratch. He gobbles them up all the same. I found a recipe for Applesauce Pancakes at Wholesome Toddler Food and decided to make them this morning. (I decided to blog about it after the fact, so there are no "making the pancake pictures") This site is GREAT for making wonderful healthy meals for your toddler and I used the baby food site for when he was little and I made all his baby food!

Applesauce Pancakes

1 cup flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon melted butter
1/2 cup milk
1 beaten egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1 1/4 cups applesauce

Sift flour, salt and baking powder into a medium mixing bowl. Combine butter, milk and egg. Stir into dry ingredients. Add vanilla and applesauce, beat well. Spoon batter onto a hot, well greased griddle, about 4 inches in diameter.

*Tips*
Use whole milk and unsweetened applesauce
These brown quickly, and you can't tell like you would regular pancakes so keep an eye on them!
The texture is much softer than a regular pancake
They are really sweet on their own, and don't need massive toppings
They taste really good and the whole family will love them!

Another super tip is to use a pancake pen! I just bought one at our local kitchen store and I love love love it! Check it out here (mine has a green top and bottom and is not Williams-Sonoma brand and it works great!)

Jack of course gobbled them up!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Compromise

I was at the sink cutting up some gorgeous strawberries, thinking back over my whirlwind of a day. Gym, shower, nap (yes!), secret Father's Day thing, park, talked to husband, Mom, Dad, Helen, Lacie, and my sister. Whew. Thinking back to conversation with my sister. She's quitting her job as a hostess at a well known, super nice restaurant in town where she pretty much rocked. Hasn't been there too long, but she made quite an impression. She's perfect at that sort of thing. She's quitting. You want to know why?
There are several small reasons, like needing a break and wanting to take a class this summer. But there is one main reason and this reason separates here from the majority of people (even Christians) I know.

The language at this restaurant by almost every single employee is downright filthy. Completely unprofessional. Every other stinkin' word starts with an F and it's constant from the manager down to the bus boy. Day in and day out. And you know what......she's quitting because, and I quote, "it's not edifying for my walk with the Lord to be around this." And you know what....she is DEAD on.

I know I've bragged about here a lot of the past several posts, but this is probably my proudest moment yet. She knows who she is and who God wants, desires, commands, her to be. Hearing this kind of language all day every day affects you. It affects anyone and it doesn't matter if you don't repeat it, it gets in your head and plays back like a record. How can you keep your mind on the things above when this is running around in your brain?

And it makes me think, how many compromises do we make for ourselves? How many times do we shrug off something and make it "no big deal"? Is it with our own mouths? Or is it with the things we allow our eyes to see on T.V. and movies? Or the crude language and sexual innuendo we watch? Or what we "just let slide" because it's funny or because the people we hang around do it?

1 Corinthians 6:19 says, "Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body." Last time I checked our eyes and ears were a part of our bodies.

It's hard to say no to some of these movies and shows, because the media does a great job and puts little funny parts in between all the crude parts. And you find yourself excusing it. The reality is, it isn't funny. It's gross and crude and what in the world is the Lord thinking while you're sitting in front of it??!!

Yep, this is a reality check. For all of us. My husband and I won't watch this stuff and I tossed a couple movies that I thought were borderline a few weeks ago. People will know who you serve by the way you live your life. I don't want there to be any doubts. So, I'm sticking with clean humor, because it does still exist.

So, take a moment to think. Is there something in your life that you are compromising? Is is worth it?

Monday, June 7, 2010

Busting with pride....the good kind!

So, I really have to say that this past weekend of Graduation festivities was awesome. We're all pooped, but it was so worth it!


Not only did my beautiful sister graduate from high school, but she had the honor of being the 1,000th graduate from Cascade Christian High School!!! This is huge! We knew that number would graduate that evening, but it wasn't until just before Breanna stepped on stage when the Principle paused for a moment to talk about how big of a moment this really was did we realize it was her! Of course, my obnoxiously loud family was whooping and hollering before he finished his sentence! She was presented with a plaque with her name on it and one will also be displayed in the trophy case at school! No other student will ever be able to say such a thing! HUGE deal! (it's HUGE...did you catch that!?)

Jack loves his Auntie!

My hubby and my sis!

ALSO.....my sister was awarded the Department award for Bible/Worldview. This award is given to a student in the school who that year exemplifies mastery of the subject. 4 out of the 6 awards were given to the Valedictorian, but my sister got the most important one in my eyes!
So, yeah...I'm a little proud. My amazing sister is headed to college where she will be impacting the Political world! She is amazingly smart and driven and I know God has big plans for her! Love you little sister!


Friday, June 4, 2010

Graduation Weekend!

It's here. The weekend I really never could forsee happening is here. My little sister, my 9 years younger than me sister, is graduation high school. GULP. I am soooo excited for her, I can hardly believe it! She's an amazing person and is so ready to be out of high school life and move on. This weekend is about her, all about her! And I am looking forward to reaping the benefits of her graduation, like all the family coming to town and the little party tomorrow :) Pics of the weekend to come next week, but for now here are some of my favorites of us growing up :)

Senior Pic
Yep...that's how we roll

Easter

She totally did this on her own!



What a cutie :)

Pear Blossom

Henry's Rootbeer!

Disneyland with Jack inside :)

My 24th Birthday

Super Hero Night at Youth Group!


Yum Donuts!

:)

Christmas Tree Decorating
I love you Breanna

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

BLOG UNDER CONSTRUCTION!!!!!!!!!!

I royally screwed up my blog as you can see and am in the process of trying to figure out how to get it back