Saturday, December 26, 2009
I would have liked to of given a little more of my time to Jesus yesterday, well everyday. Its so easy to get caught up in the things of this world!
We are blessed and I am ever so thankful to the Lord our God for giving us a roof over our head and all the yummy food that we got to indulge in yesterday, and probably for the rest of this month!
My girls had a wonderful time! Its funny out of all the gifts they got their favorite items are the ones we spent the least on. Home made playdough for one and the my older one loved the Leapster2 she got. I got it on sale for like 20 bucks and she just loves it. She also received a bike and Madi got a giant puppy that she wants to sleep with no matter what I say:)
Oh and how can I forget to mention, it SNOWED here! Yes in North Texas!!!
It was wild to see and drive in on Christmas eve, but very beautiful and really put us in the Christmas mood:)
The biggest surprise was my sweet husband got me a "new" (its used but that doesn't matter) Chevrolet Suburban for Christmas. He's spent the last 3 weeks doing some maintenance on it, cleaning it, changing the oil and stuff like that without me ever knowing. Really I didn't have a clue! He did have to tell a few lies along the way, which, he said, killed him to do. But it turned out to be a wonderful surprise!
No we have room in the family car for another 4 babies!!! LOL
Well here are a few Christmas pictures-
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
We live in the country with lots of woods and right across from a large body of water at that, so wild animals are a given. But its always hard for me because I get so attached to those sweet little birds. And you know I was going to take a picture of all them this morning and didn't, now I wish I would have.
Next spring Ill be sure to have new babies though.
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Wow this season has just flown by!
Im so excited for Christmas. I just love all the decorations, the food, the family time spent together. I love seeing people who we don't get to see regularly. But most of all I love being reminded everywhere I look about the birth of our Saviour!
Its so easy to remember your faith during Christmas.
But the hard part is to continue with the feeling of love and adoration for our Lord once all the decorations have come down. Will I remember Christ at the turn of every corner in my home? Will I think of him as Im baking? Will I continue to tell stories of Jesus to my children like I do during the Christmas season?
I sure hope I do!
We had set our Christmas budget low this season, we could of spent much more on presents this year...but we chose not to go overboard. I have made many more handmade gifts. We will spend more time at home this year. We will go go candle light service on Christmas eve, which we are very excited about! At first we thought we would have to attend another church on Christmas Eve, since the Pastor said they normally do not do one at our Church since he had started preaching there a few years ago. But we expressed out interest and he said he would think about it...then the fallowing Sunday it was in the church bulletin! Ask and you shall receive!!
Its a short service, 30 minutes. But that will be just enough to remind us what Christmas is about and the girls should be able to sit through it. Plus we will be coming from my father in laws house that evening, which is usually filled with many presents. It can be overwhelming for the kids and Christ will often get lost in all those presents.
Well Im on a mission to get the house clean and prepared to celebrate the birth of our King! Must get going:)
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Friday, December 4, 2009
So a few weeks back I wrote some about being a one income family. There are lots of difficulties that come with living on one income but I believe many more benefits.
This time of the year can be particularly hard when it comes to staying disciplined and focused. Just because its Christmas doesn't mean you forget all about your budget. In fact if you are an organized one income family you will have budgeted Christmas into your finances months ago.
I know its tempting to forgo putting extra on the credit card your trying to pay off so that you can buy that video game for your kid. But trust me when I say your child will understand, maybe not now...but when he/she is older they will remember what it means to be responsible and wise when it comes to money. So whats your Christmas budget look like? Do you have one? Here are some tips-
1. Set a budget and stick to it! Sounds simple doesn't it. But our consumerist society is out there waiting to temp you into buying more. And its not just stores that don't have your best interest in mind. Its friends and family too!
Just yesterday I was told by my well meaning Grandmother to just get a $5 gift for a gift exchange at a family gathering. Although I had just told her that we are not doing gift exchanges because our budget will not allow. Just $5, and my nephew will have something to open up. As if he doesn't already have many gifts to open that day. Its easy to think "Just $5" but that's a slippery slope to go down. Don't do it.
2. Make a list and check it twice! Yes, write it down, everyone your buying for and what you will be buying, then try as best you can to stick to it. I know once you get out there you might see something for someone you hadn't thought of, and that's okay. But it has to fit into the budget. Set a limit for each person your buying for. It might be $20 for your Aunt, and $100 for mom. If you see something while your out that you just know that special someone would love but it doesn't fit into your budget you will have to have the discipline and strength to move on. Maybe you can save to get it for them another time. There's always birthdays! Plus they will never know that you didn't get them that "other" gift!
3. Don't forget about the "other" expenses. Gifts are not the only thing that you spend more on this month. There's all that yummy holiday food, and gas to drive to visit family and friends. Is there going to be a office Christmas party, a bible study group gift exchange, or perhaps your child's school will have a special event that you'll have to bake something for? You must consider all of those things and add them into your budget.
So how is my family budget doing? We set a $500 limit and have about $200 left to get our kids their main gift and eachother something special. Okay, I would like to be able to spend more on my kids, my friends, my in laws. I want to bake every neighbor, church member and acquaintance cookies. Give my pets something special to show my love. But when it comes down to it that isn't what I want my kids to remember when they think back on Christmas. They won't remember that they didn't receive some toy that they wanted when they were 5. They will remember if Mom and Dad where always struggling to pay the bills or never saved for college.
And also let us not overlook that Christmas is about CHRIST, not shopping and presents!
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
As President, on October 3, 1789, George Washington made the following proclamation and created the first Thanksgiving Day designated by the national government of the United States of America:
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Pioneer Woman's Peach Crisp. This was my husband's request. I told him good luck finding fresh peaches this time of year. But he is determined!
Libby's Pumpkin Pie. Because its really the best! Especially when you add freshly made whipped cream!
And my favorite...Apple Pie. Which I don't have a recipe to share. Its all in my head, every time I make it I tell myself to write it down, and then the apples and cinnamon and sugar and dough all over take me and I forget!
Sweet Potato Casserole. I use this recipe with some of the changes that are mentioned in the reviews, like reducing the sugar a bit and I also still add the marshmallow along side the pecan topping like the picture above shows.
Im also bringing a basic salad and some potato skins as a appitizer. I hope to be eating around noon. We are going to try to visit some other family that afternoon, but we will see how things go. My MIL just had major surgery last week so Im not sure how much she will be up for. Having 6 grand kids running around all under the age of 7, 3 under the age of 3 will were on her Im sure.
Well I do hope everyone has a wonderful week and may your hearts and home be full of divine blessings on this Thanksgiving!
Friday, November 20, 2009
And its one of the best decision we have ever made.
I think every family can do it given the right set of tools.
What tools are needed to not only survive but thrive on one income you ask? Well here's my thoughts.
Let me preface this by saying the method of living on one income when you are a family of more then two, so a Dad, a Mom and child(ren) works best when you are following Jesus, and by following Jesus you are living or trying to live biblical. So you accept and embrace the roles GOD has defined for us. Real Men and Real woman are the ones who do best and thrive on one income (aside from the wealthy of course). So the tools that have worked for us-
1. Humility. You must humble yourself to let go of all the things that you think life should look like and hand it over to God. Be humble and ask for HIS help. You can't do it on your own. Staying at home day in and out with your children is trying at the very least and you can't do it without HIS help, period.
2. Get Organized. Not just financially, but through out your home. Recently we made about $900 on EBay from selling stuff that we discovered by simple organization of our stuff! There are tons and tons of great advice and help online to get you organized. If you need links let me know!
3. You have to be Disciplined! We could have very easily taken the earnings off EBay and bought any number of things we wanted. But instead we are saving it for things we need. And you have to be disciplined enough to say no to the things you want and smart enough to know the difference between things your need and things you want.
4. Wise. You have to be prudent and seek wise counsel not only from GOD but from others who you know have their stuff together when it comes to finances. Don't seek advice about how to structure your budget from a working parent of a two income household who is drowning in credit card debt! Go to someone who's been there where you are now, perhaps a fellow member of your church, or perhaps it your own Mom!
5. You must be deliberate, not hasty. When it comes to living on one income this is important. You cannot make hasty decisions when it comes to your money or your time. Talk it over before you buy anything or schedule anything. Once you work on a budget, your not just done with it. Its a continued process, just like your schedule. Your time must be handled carefully also. You may make the mistake of thinking because you will now be staying home, you'll have more time..trust me that couldn't be farthest from the truth. So consider your time spent carefully. Before you schedule that dance class for your daughter on a whim look carefully at what time of the day it falls...is it right around dinner time? Husband decides on a dime to have appetizers with the buddies after work without talking it over with you first? Things like that can really through a wrench in your schedule.
6. Full disclosure. Talk about everything with your spouse, everything. Even the lunch date you have with your girlfriends or the cute shirt you saw and thought about buying. Full and open disclosure of every cent spent is necessary when you are first starting out. Because see most people who have two incomes sometimes spend extra without really talking about it with their spouse simply because they think they can cover it with their income.
7. Stop being a consumer! Start being a producer! You must turn away from the old ways of figuring out how to get more stuff and start figuring out how to produce a meaningful and lasting legacy for your children and YES it can be done on ONE income. There are so many frugal ways to buy the stuff you need and even the occasional thing you want in a frugal manner where you don't have to break the budget and you will actually get ahead more so on one income then when there was two!
8. And this may be the most important yet the hardest one to do. Be CONTENT. Stop comparing your house to the one down the street. Stop wishing your had a newer car, or nicer clothes or a new pair of shoes. Just be content in whatever situation you have and live and make the most of it. Once you start doing that and maybe even trying to give some of it away you'll find that living on one income is so easy!
Oh and since you will be staying at home now...consider homeschooling those kiddos of yours huh?:) Okay did I go to far?? :)
Okay next Friday Im posting more about transitioning from a two income to a one income household. Come back y'all!
Thursday, November 19, 2009
Husband is in Dallas tonight, so I made homemade Mac & cheese for dinner and we have chocolate chip cookies baking in the oven as I type. Once the girls go to bed Ill be finishing a peasant top that Im sewing for Madi. Its a wonderful cool evening:)
Happy Thursday everyone!
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I have alot of clothes pins around my house and have found many ways that they come in handy.
There's a list here.
But my favorite uses are as a chip clip and to hold a towel around my kids for when they eat messy foods like spaghetti, works for me and my laundry!
Oh and if you want to get fancy, Iv seen people paint them with cool little flowers and bright colors! Neat, but I don't have time for that:)
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Thank a Veteran today! And please keep our Soldiers in your prayers and thoughts each and everyday!
Rather they are abroad or at a base here in the states. Their everyday life is difficult and trying in many ways that the average American has no idea. And also pray for and thank those families who support our troops. Its not easy being a military spouse, I know this to be true.
So a big THANK YOU from our family to all our military and Veterans. I'd hug ya if I could!
I recently read a post about the struggle to make Sunday the day of rest. The Sabbath day. Keeping that day Holy is difficult. Especially for Mom.
Between cleaning, cooking and caring for your family were does a loving Mom get her rest in?
Well here is what works for me.
1. Make Sunday meals simple. One pot meal for the big meal, rather that be Lunch or Supper. Also known as Dinner and supper 'round these parts:)
The crock pot is my best friend on Sundays. Chili is the one thing that seems to work the best. You can throw in in the morning, it will be ready by the time you get home from Church and you can do a variety of things with it. Chili dogs, Frito pie, or just keep it simple and serve it with some crackers.
2. To reduce dishes...use paper. I know not very fancy,but we are looking to reduce our work load here!
3. Dress simply. Keep you clothes and your kids clothes easy. Casual dress but no jeans is usually the rule for me and my kids. And I stay away from things that need to be ironed, and if it does I do it the night before. Plus lay the clothes out the night before so your not searching through the closets that morning. Oh and let the kids dress themselves if at all possible!
4. Because we are a home school family and get to do whatever makes us happy:) LOL
We do a 4 day school week and leave Mondays as our chill day. Another words Monday is the day mommy catches up on the things that didn't get done on Sundays. The girls usually do crafts and art, watch movies and play on Mondays.
5. Keep things in perspective. I know for me I can look around the house by Sunday afternoon and just be disgusted at the amount of mess there is. I mean I just cleaned yesterday! But really its because my house gets lived in, the kids play, we eat, we hang out together and focus on our family and the Lord on Sundays not rather or not the kitchen is clean.
And it works for me!
Friday, November 6, 2009
I read this today and it really sums up why we homeschool-
This is reason #1 why we are planning to homeschool: I believe that God has given us a job that takes 24 hours a day. Will my children have the whole Bible memorized? Probably not. But making learning and living the Scripture a centerpiece of their years in our home is something I believe wholeheartedly that we must do - and it will take tremendous effort and time.runwatchplaywait.blogspot.com, Run the Earth, Watch the Sky...: Homeschooling: Part Two - Radical discipleship, Aug 2009
You should read the whole article.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
I have my BFF taken care of and Im going to make and mail her cookies too:)
Last year I made these and they shipped and kept very well!
What about y'all, do you have any great ideas for simple yet lovely Christmas gifts?
Oh goodness, I just realized I made a Christmas post and its not even Thanksgiving yet!
Friday, October 30, 2009
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Because I recently won a book over at The Happy Housewife, I want to pass it on and do my own giveaway. Problem is I have to idea what to giveaway! I want to promote Christ, cooking and family. So my gift to you will be something from those categories. Take the poll below and let me know what you think. Have another idea? Leave me a comment and let me know!
Friday, October 16, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Jesus." Phil. 4:19
I must remember that our Lord does provide all that I need. Even those things that I thought I needed and didn't get, turns out I didn't need them after all.
And then the things I didn't even know I needed until the Lord blessed me with them. Wow our God is good!
Monday, October 5, 2009
But as always, the Lord finds a way to let us know it will all be okay. Our Sunday sermon was about Romans 8:28-
"And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose."
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
I just wanted to make a quick post about a good deal. I just ordered the Couponizer
this morning and saved a few dollars on it using the code- STARTNOW. If you coupon, you will love this great way of organizing you coupons. It makes saving money at the grocery store and lots of other places so much easier! And fun!
Friday, September 25, 2009
1 I charge you therefore before God and the Lord Jesus Christ, who will judge the living and the dead at[a] His appearing and His kingdom: 2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. 3 For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; 4 and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables. 5 But you be watchful in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.
I watched Niteline last night. They are doing a series on the ten commandments. Last nights show was about Adultery. The question- Are we born to cheat?
They had Pastor Ed Young of the Fellowship Church in Dallas, a recovering sex addict, Ashley Madison.com founder and CEO Noel Biderman, and author Jenny Block. Don't know what Ashley Madison.com? Its a dating website of sorts, like E Harmony, but serves those who are searching exclusively to cheat on there spouse. Openly on the website, perhaps not so openly in their marriages though. And Jenny Block is an advocate for open marriages. She herself has been married for 13 years I believe she said and now has a ten year old daughter and a girlfriend on the side, that her husband knows about. She not only has a lover on the side but is also engaging in a same sex relationship.
Obviously the Pastor had the proper view on these things and defended the sanctity of Marriage, the biblical definition of Marriage, another words God's definition.
The two panelists that were defending redefining marriage just made me so frustrated. Some of the things they said, were so, offensive to everything that God has created for us. The Author, Jenny Block was so blasphemous it was almost laughable. She said she had a wonderful relationship with God, yet rebuked anything in the Bible that didn't agree with her own selfish wants as not really being the word of God. Both the "pro Adultery" panelists repeatedly showed their ignorance of what the bible says. But really these two are just a couple of the examples of the moral decline in America. There is no two ways about it. Marriage was created by God. Therefor Marriage is defined by God. God also made grass green, we can't just (because we want) redefine grass and say its purple when its really green no matter what we say it is. I suppose science could some how produce a seed that made a purple grass but...oh just never mind. My point is that the Word of God says that marriage is a covenant between one man and one woman and that adultery is wrong. Period.
People have got to start living a better life, leading a better life. Americans are rejecting Christianity, and even those who still practice Christianity don't even understand the basics of the Christian faith anymore. As the above examples so clearly show. These people really believe they are Christians, yet they say adultery is okay, what?! Am I the only one who sees the disconnect there?
Thursday, September 24, 2009
Simply the BEST article Iv read about Motherhood.