Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Just add candles

Ironically, I've been very busy ( & so distracted thinking about the new equipment, how I can use it) that I haven't posted any pictures lately!!
Here are some pics of us doing pumpkins last week. :-)

Monday, October 29, 2007

Potato Po-tah-to

I just found about 10 potatoes under my son's dresser when i was digging for a sock. They weren't sprouting yet, so I'm guessing this was done recently. I can only ask why? Why would a boy put potatoes under his dresser? Would they have started to stink eventually? Would I have ever realized that half a bag was missing? Probably not.

Boys, oh, boys. Gotta love 'em, and try not to wring their little necks! ;-)

On a completely different note, visiting Tab's house plus the journal I just saw about bed spreads has got me thinking about my house. For some reason I can place people in photos, and do lighting and colors, etc. I love all that. And I love dressing up and doing make-up (never outgrew the whole princess dress-up thing). But I can't decorate my own home! It's like I'm not even sure what I like. I'm going for some kind of look (maybe?) but then I change my mind.

It's not until I see what other people have that I say "wow-- THAT is what I would want my house to look like!" Well, Tab, you've won the prize. I love the black tile, the plates, the bent spoon, the old sewing machine you name it. Awesome house. I just wanted to take photos of the house, and wander around... but I restrained myself. ;-) I am very very sentimental, and the old vintage things just called out to me.

So, anyway, if you see something beautiful (or old and ugly but it fits me) please let me know. Maybe it'll jump out at me and I'll start to get a clue.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Just ask!

Okay, so I'm floating on cloud 9 right now. I can overlook all the little things: the messy house, the misbehaving toddler, piles of laundry... because my long-awaited dreams are being realized, and I am so HAPPY about it! :-) Jump, jump, jump.

I've read some friends' blogs lately that got me thinking. Really, what am I supposed to be doing? What's my gift? My purpose? Am I already fulfilling it, without realizing it? Is God using me behind my back, so to speak? Or do I need to be consciously looking for more of a "calling?"

I took a spiritual gifts assessment in Sunday School. It surprised me quite a bit. Apparently I'm a great helper, and high on mercy. But teaching and evangelism are not strong points, (supposedly). Anyway, my friend Shelley wrote about this awesome drum player who was so obviously fulfilling his calling. I want to be doing that.

Okay, so all this rambling just to say that I started really analyzing my strengths, weaknesses, passions. What do I love? How can I use it? How can it glorify God? My top things are my family (duh), and photography.

In a previous post I mentioned my dream of starting my own home photography business. Friends encouraged me to pray, and prayed with me. Then my parents said they would buy me a super nice camera for Christmas. SO I asked if they please give it to me now. And they said yes! Yea! I'm learning that it doesn't hurt to ask about things.

It's not just open doors, but it seems to be an open road, and I'm getting lots green lights. I know God sometimes says "no." And He sometimes says "not yet" or "wait and see." I know that not all of my prayers and dreams would be good for me, and He knows what is best. But it sure is pleasant when the two align, you know? :-)

My grandparents had already given me a really nice tripod, and I already have plenty of props (hello, homeschoolers with four kids! ha ha). So now I am just setting up a portfolio and a website. What fun! Oh, and my sweet uncle is getting me Photoshop CS3. YEA!

So please keep praying about this for me. I am excited (thrilled really), and we could certainly use an extra income. It's not easy for 6 people to live on a factory worker's income. This seems to be God's solution to a lot of our problems right now. He has such wonderful gifts for His children.

And you can check out my site ForgetMeNots by Wendy and give me some ideas and feedback. It's obviously just at the beginning stages, and I have a ways to go. And I don't have the new camera or software in my hands yet. When I get all that, the website will take off, with new pictures, enhancements, what have you.

Btw, I keep mis-typing it "frogmenots" so if you see that, you know what I'm talking about! ;-)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More two-year old conversations

Mommy: Hi, Trevor, can I play with you?
Trev: No, go out.
Mommy: Well, can I read you a book?
Trev: No, you can't. Go out.
Mommy: Okay, give me a kiss.
Trev: No. Yucky.
Mommy: If you give me a kiss I will go out.
Trev: I wiped it off

Why are boys like that? Little rascal!

Yesterday I went through the drive-through window at the bank. I rolled down my window and was greeted. Then Trevor yells from the backseat, "I'll take two hamburgers!" The tellers got a good laugh! What's really funny is that we don't eat out!! Almost never. He's *maybe* gotten a burger through a drive through once in the last 6 months. And he's only 2! He also does not watch TV so he doesn't see all of those drive through commercials. Where is this coming from?

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

oh, where to even begin??

So much to blog, so little time! ;-)
Okay, I may ramble a bit again, but apparently some of you (October at least) doesn't mind that.

Today was a wonderful day for me. I had four prayer requests answered in less than 24 hours!! I feel compelled to share, so keep on reading if you want to know the juicy details!

First of all, we got money! YES! It was that unexpected, right-when-you-need-it kind of money that just flies into your lap. My grandparents always know when we're ont he brink of disaster, I think. I know we all have direct links to God, but their reception is very clear, and they get these impulses to just do things.

Okay, second one: my baby pooped. Yes, it is a big deal. Breastfed babies usually poop every day, but little Oliver had gone several days and was being very fussy and gassy. Not like him at all. I prayed about it and he pooped. So thank you, God, for that. :-)

Third, Trevor initiated his potty time today! That's a big deal for me!! He didn't pee in his pull-up all day at pre-K (3 hours) and his teacher said that he asked to go twice. YEA for small miracles.

Fourth, I had this dream about someday doing photography from home, as a part-time job. I LOVE doing it, and any extra money could certainly help our family. I figured this would just be one of those unrealized dreams because, really, how many people can do that? But two dear friends asked me to pray about it. And, voila, now I have access to a SUPER nice digital camera. One that I would had to sell my furniture to buy! Puzzle pieces, just sliding around and coming together.

Ask and you shall receive, right? Well, Lord, I'm gonna keep on asking, and feel free to keep on pouring out the blessings! I'm just basking in the glow today. And, even on my not-so-answered-days, I love the Lord for who He is and what He does and how much He loves me. He loves to lavish gifts on His children. If we know how to give good gifts to our children, how much more does He know? :-)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

I'm a slacker

Okay, I know I haven't been keeping up well with my blog or anyone else's. I've just been so super busy, and I have so many things that I like to do with any spare time I get.

A quick recap. Last weekend we had some awesome friends over. Jack and Sue are older than us, and I think of them as mentors. They are both so sweet and great, and their little son Daniel is good friends with Ethan. Anyway, it was so much fun to have them over to eat and roast marshmallows in the fire pit. It was good to see October that night, too, when she stopped by for jumper cables.

The week is a blur. We did lots of arts and crafts, went to the park with friends, prepared for a yard sale, went to Mothering Matters. The kids had TeamKID on Wednesday and I helped teach a pre-K class. That was fun, and Ethan loved having me as his "real teacher" for part of the time. (As if I don't "really" teach at home! Hmph. ;-)

Yesterday Fred went to the poker tourney in West Fork and made it back just in time to hop in the van and head to our Sunday School fall party. That was fun! I have pictures to post. Isabelle got to see the most beloved animals on four hooves. She just adores horses. Julie promised her she could come and ride soon, and already the "when, Mommy, when?" has started.

Part of the whole farm experience was a hay ride. Let me tell you, that hayride was the LONGEST one I've ever been on. An hour and a half on a hay bale. Wow! Luckily, it was very mild weather and very enjoyable company. I love to be outside anyway. And two of our four kiddos fell asleep on the ride! They all slept like rocks last night, too. In fact, Ethan didn't wake up until 8:45, when I was getting ready to leave!

Today is also a blur. Church stuff for 3 hours, Shopping, cleaning, football, friend over, choir, popcorn. For his dinner, Fred requested this artery clogging meal that my sister makes. It's hot sausage cooked, then mixed with cream cheese and wrapped into a crescent roll. You bake for about 15 minutes, and voila, you have the unhealthiest (but very tasty) snack (or meal) that you can imagine. He wants me to make them again tomorrow so he can bring them to Man Night at church. That certainly seems like "Man food."

Oh, and on the topic of food. I cooked fish!! I know, seems a weird thing to be proud of. But it's the first time I've ever cooked good, edible fish. Suzanne gave it to me, and I got tips from October and Mimi. It turned out so yummy that people went back for seconds and thirds until it was gone. Success! So I bought some more at the store today. October reminded me that it is brain food. Yes, it is!

Okay, I'm just tired and rambling now. Good night to all and to all a good night. Pictures will follow soon... yawn...

Thursday, October 18, 2007

dream big and color the world

Okay, I'm just having WAY too much fun with photography and editing!! My dear uncle Keith recommended some photo software. Oh, the joy! It doesn't do much, but it's a start! I'm excited to be actively pursuing such a fun hobby. My big dream (and prayer): to do this for a living. I'd LOVE (love, love, love) to take pictures in my own studio, with my own equipment and effects, and then edit it myself.
A girl can dream, right?
Here are some of my favorites that I worked on today (during the time I should have tackled the mountain of laundry). :-)

I love this boy!

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Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Putting the peepee where it goes!

Yesterday Trevor wore his Big Boy Underwear all day and "put the peepee where it goes!" YEA! Truly, this is reason for rejoicing. I've had two in diapers for the last 6 months! That gets expensive.
There were two or three accidents yesterday, but he did really well for the most part.
Of course, when he woke up this mroning he climbed in bed with me, took off his diaper, and peed all over me and the bed. Ugh. Ick. But that is beside the point, right? This is a happy, positive post. Nevermind the extra two loads of laundry that I have to do... Oh, the joys of potty training...

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Happy Birthday, Julie!!

My little sister is almost 26. (It's nearly midnight)
Today we went to brunch at Emelia's Kitchen. Is that what it's called? Very nice place, with yummy food. I'd never had a Mediterranean omelet before, and it was great. So much food that I couldn't finish it all. Yum, yum.
Then we did a bit of shopping.
I love hanging out with my sisters. The gal in the restaurant said we looked like triplets. I think that may be a bit of an exaggeration. What do you think?

Friday, October 12, 2007

And one last Friday post!! Our field trip photos!

Pictures from our "field trip" at Ranalli Farms in Tontitown with Mothering Matters.

And some friend pictures:

Adelia and boys

Michala and her kids

Dana and clan

A kid-friendly kitchen

Okay, so I took Suzanne's advice and rearranged my kitchen. Now the glasses and plates, bowls, etc are all down in the lower cupboards. The pots and pans and plasticware are up high. Why? So my kids can unload the dishwasher! YEA! It works!!! I haven't unloaded my dishwasher for five days. FIVE days! I'm so happy. And the kids are happy, too. Who knew that they would enjoy unloading the dishwasher.

So thank you to Suzanne. What other tips do you have??

At Ann-Marie's Request...

Friday Fifteen!

Drat! I missed the Thursday Thirteen.

Oh well! Here’s my replacement - the Friday Fifteen. Please feel free to post/answer these questions on your blog in honor of the (newly appointed) Friday Fifteen. I look forward to learning more about my blogging friends!

The Friday Fifteen:

Endearment you call your husband most often

Endearment your husband calls you most often
Honey (we're not very creative when it comes to names)

Endearment you call your husband when you want something

Endearment your husband calls you when he wants something

Endearment your husband doesn’t like

Endearment you don’t like
Baby cakes

If “the fall” had never happened, which wild animal would you most like to pet?
polar bear

If you could shop for free in one store for one day, what store would you choose?
I don't know. I never shop. I know this answer is going to make my sisters sick to their stomach. Wendy, you don't know where you would shop???

Which actress/famous person have people said you look like?
Julia Roberts. Must be the big lips. I have a totally different nose, though.

Which actress/famous person would you like to look like?
Ummm... I don't watch many movie either. How about Jessica Biel (The Illusionist)

If you won the lottery, what’s the first totally frivolous thing you would buy?
A bigger house. With no carpet.

If you could change places with one person for one day, who would you choose?
Melinda Gates (oh, the money I would donate in that one day!)... I like this answer.

If you could go back in time, which historical/famous person would you want to spend time with?

If you could choose one day in history to be present – but not be seen, heard, or able to affect change - what day would that be?
The first day of creation (can you imagine how awesome that would be?!)... I love this answer!

What is your most unrealistic fear?
That I will die suddenly and my children won't remember me. Not a nice way to end the "quiz", girl!

Now it’s your turn!

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Me and the kids before church

Plethora of 'puter pals

Okay, I had NO idea that so many people I know have their own blogs: myspace, facebook, cafemom, blogspot. How have I lived so long in the dark ages?? I've only had this blog for a few months, but the rest of the world has been at it for years.

Anyway, I now have an easy way to keep up with so many awesome people from MM, CHESS, FBC, and so forth. Check out my friends and family blog list for contacts that you might know, too. Encourage someone else by leaving a comment on their site. I know that I love to hear from my friends. :-)

Sunday, October 7, 2007

My hick in-laws

Yesterday we went to see my in-laws sing at their church. Their group is called Pioneer Days. I guess they didn't like my name suggestion: Hicks in the Sticks. He's like, "hey, what are you trying to say anyway??" But, come on, look at them!! ;-) Hahaha You don't get much more hick than that! I love 'em anyhow. ;-)

After the singing, we ate some heart-attack-inducing (but yummy) food and then the kids pet the horses nearby before we left. It was a dream come true for Isabelle. She L-O-V-E-S horses.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

My Dad's house last night

It was nice to relax at my Dad's last night with my sister and her kids. So much has been going on, and life has gotten very stressful. Hopefully it will all be over soon.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Never Cry Wolf

When we were taking our walk yesterday, Ethan was happily chatting along.
Ethan: Mommy, do you know what my favorite Bible story is?
Me: No, honey, what's your favorite Bible story?
Ethan: The one about the boy who took care of the sheep.
Me: Oh, David?
Ethan: no.
Me: the shepherds in the field who heard about Jesus?
Ethan:no! T he one with the wolf.
Me: huh? Which story with a wolf?
Ethan: You know, the little shepherd boy got bored so he said there was a wolf and everyone came running, but he was kidding. And then he did it again and said "wolf, wolf" but there was really no wolf and he laughed. Then there really was a wolf after that, but when he called "wolf, wolf" no one came to help him so the wolf gobbled him up. That story. It's my favorite Bible story.

Monday, October 1, 2007

My sister's artwork

My sister, Julie, is an artist for Hannah's Candles. She has recently stopped working to take care of her newborn daughter, and she uses her "free time" now to do custom portraits! Of course, being the wonderful sister that she is, she is doing my kids first!! YEA!
This is her first custom child's portrait. Isabelle requested that she be a mermaid. Ethan is next, and he will be a fisherman.
The portraits are a huge amount of work, obviously, and this will be a wonderful second income for her. If you, or anyone you know, is interested, please let me know and I'll get the message to her! :-)

body image

Every Sunday Fred buys donuts. It's just a tradition for him. I usually pass on those fried delicacies, but yesterday I ate TWO donuts with my coffee. Anyone remember that commercial of the girl walking down the street with donuts on her bottom? That's the picture that I immediately conjured up. I wanted to post it, but can't find it. heh heh. Just as well.

After that I tried on three outfits for church before finally sticking on a knee length skirt and blouse. And, let me tell you, I was so self-conscious about it at church. I usually wear longer skirts than that. We all have our body image issues, don't we?

I remember once, in elementary school, a girl told me on the playground that I had bad nails and big lips. (Actually, part of that was a major compliment, but I didn't take it that way at the time. Maybe thin lips were "in" then.) And so started my body image issues.

I've always had a gripe about my thighs, too. Don't we all? ;-) But when I look at pictures of myself, I don't look bad... so it must just be the mirror that I'm looking in at home (and in dressing rooms.)

I have to stop myself and remember that my "little people" are watching me. I want them to love their bodies and be confident with who they are. God made us in His image, and we should treasure that and take care of ourselves, not condemn and gripe, turning this way and that in the mirror.

And, actually, sometimes I feel very good about who I am and how I look. I guess it just depends on the mood of the day. ;-) Fred helps, too, being very complimentary of my appearance. Although he did ask, before the La-Z-Boy picnic, if I was planning to wear what I had on... Hmmm... Needless to say, I quickly changed clothes.

My parents did bless me with healthy habits from a young age. We always took walks, went swimming, hiked and camped, played tennis.... Of course, when you have marathon-running parents, I guess it's natural that they would pass on good exercise and eating habits. Having chips or soda in our home was a big deal. We just didn't regularly eat like that. Cakes were reserved for birthdays only. But we ate tons of delicious fruit, steamed veggies... all the things that I love now.

A gal I know recommended a great article on body image by a friend of mine, Shelley. You can find it here. It's worth the read!