Friday, February 29, 2008
Many of you blog friends guessed right.
I was given a Kitchen Aid mixer!!! This is such a nice and totally unexpected gift. I'm not sure what to think. Such generosity is humbling. But what I do know is that I can't wait to use it! The thought of all the delectables I can concoct makes my heart palpitate. If I didn't already have two obligations tomorrow, I'd be spending my Saturday baking!
It was my turn to cook for the supper co-op, so I spent the day in the kitchen. I was checking the stove and mixing ingredients while teaching my daughter how to subtract nine. We enjoyed the fragrant smells of ribs cooking all day.
My children played together especially well and amused me with their creative masterpieces. They found an old shirt box and used what materials they could find throughout the house to make a "bear."
After school was over, it seemed like I was continually on the phone. I have a "crick" in my neck from holding the phone with my shoulder while doing food preparations. I received calls from family members and friends. I think it was "call Leah day," because I got an unusual number of phone calls. It was fun to talk with so many friends.
Connie called to tell me she had put together some mixes for our favorite breakfast recipe: baked oatmeal muffins. This was very exciting to me! She had premixed the dry ingredients for the recipe into plastic bags and written on the outside of the bags the rest of the ingredients needed. I promptly placed them in the pantry excited about how easy it would be to bake my next batch of muffins.
Then, thanks to a coupon from money saving mom, my hubby picked up these for me!
The regular price for this 12 pack of retractable Sharpie markers is usually $23/pack. With the coupon, my hubby paid $2/pack. You would not believe how extremely excited this made me! I love Sharpies and I really love an unbelievable deal. Click the coupon link above to get your coupon. But you must hurry, because it expires tomorrow!
While I was extremely excited about the Sharpie deal, I was overwhelmed by the next surprise. A sweet friend called and asked if she could stop by. After rushing around to make myself look presentable, I was shocked when she arrived at my door with this:
This was my view from the top of the box as I opened it. Can you guess what it is? Unfortunately there's no prize to give away, but your prize can be the satisfaction of being right! (I personally love that feeling!) Leave your guesses in the comments, and I'll tell you tonight how this item makes my heart palpitate!
Saturday, February 23, 2008
Everyone is always welcome to visit my blog! But I'm a really curious person, and I would love to know who my blog readers are. So in honor of my blog anniversary, I want to "de-lurk"!
A "lurker" is someone who reads a blog, but never leaves a comment. Since I am a very curious person and sometimes curiosity kills me, please help me celebrate my blog anniversary by leaving a comment.
It's not hard to leave a comment, and it doesn't have to be long and involved. Just a note to say "I came"..."I read"..."here's what I think."
This is what you need to do:
1)Click on the 'comment' link at the bottom of the post.
2)Click on 'yes' when prompted to proceed.
3)A 'Leave Your Comment' section will pop up that you can view other persons comments and to type in your own comment text. (Scroll to the bottom to comment.)
5)At the bottom of the section is a 'Choose an identity'
6)Click 'Anonymous', OR, if you have a Google account, put in your Google info.
7)Click on 'PUBLISH YOUR COMMENT'...
That's all you have to do! Consider it your good deed for the day: keeping my curiosity from killing me! Thanks for stopping by.
Thursday, February 21, 2008
This man loves to pass his Gator-love on to his son.
This man knows how to have fun.
This man is very smart.
This man can carve a "mean" pumpkin!
This man collects Mr. Potato Heads (that's a story for another post).
This man lets his family travel with him on work related trips.
This man misses golf tournaments to attend his daughter's tea party award ceremony.
This man teaches the Bible to his children.
This man plays the guitar.
This man is an awesome youth pastor!
This man looks great in a suit.
This man is a wonderful provider for his family.
This man likes to stay healthy.
This man is an adventurer.
This man loves to spend Saturdays on the lake. He's awesome on the wakeboard and kneeboard.
This man builds sandboxes (and other great things for his kids).
This man loves his wife. He's so kind and forgiving.
This man turns 39 today.
This man is hot!
This man is all this and so much more!
This man is mine!
Monday, February 18, 2008
Until recently, that is! I was introduced to it at a girlfriend's house. She invited several friends over for an evening of Wii! We went bowling, played tennis with each other, and even tried our hands at boxing!
We did all of this in the comfort of my friend's family room.
Here is my Wii alter-ego (Note the beauty mark I gave myself and the over-the-top eye make-up!).
We had a blast, and I am hooked. So much so that I have been checking out the cost of owning a Wii!
Not only did we interact with each other, get lots of exercise, and develop our game skills, we laughed our heads off! It's pretty impossible to watch each other trying to take out our boxing opponent with out rolling in the floor.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
(Edit: There is a debate in my house over the spelling of coop. Would you spelling experts please help? Is it coop or co-op?)I am so excited about this! I joined three friends in a supper coop! If you have ever thought about doing this, I highly recommend that you give it a try!
(Edit: Thanks for your input to above question! I think my hubby won the argument, so I changed the title to co-op)
Here's how it works: Four families agree that they will work together to provide meals for each other during the week. Each cook is assigned a week day (Monday through Thursday) in which she is responsible for cooking. Today was my day to cook this week. I made enough food to feed all four families, then I delivered them to each home. That means that on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday I did NOT cook supper! And on those days, a meal was delivered to my home.
This is the second week that we have been doing this, and I am sold on the idea. It has freed me from the large amounts of time I felt like I was spending in the kitchen. I have been able to give more attention to schooling. I have been able to be more flexible with my children and to add more fun activities to our day.
Here are a few tips for starting your own supper coop:
1. Find friends to join you who have similar family size and similar preferences in food.
2. It is important that everyone in the coop live in close vicinity to each other. Spending a lot of time delivering food adds stress and takes up a lot of your time.
3. Have a meeting of all the cooks and plan a menu for a whole month. Make sure the meeting is a low stress event. If at all possible, meet where children are not present. Our next meeting will be at our local coffee shop. We will accomplish our goal in a fun and enjoyable atmosphere.
4. Use this meeting to discuss the likes and dislikes of each family as well as the menu choices for the month. Make menu assignments and determine who will be cooking on which days.
5. Determine delivery times. This will vary based on the time of year and the activities in which each family is involved.
6. Be flexible. Life happens and people have activities in their lives which will make flexibility in scheduling essential. One of our coop families is traveling this week, so we agreed to freeze the one meal they missed. They can relax knowing that when they return from their trip, there is a meal waiting for them.
7. Be willing to be honest. If your family doesn't particularly like a certain menu selection, don't hesitate to kindly let the coop cooks know.
8. Don't wear your feelings on your sleeve. Everyone has different taste. If other families don't prefer a dish you made, it's not an attack on your cooking.
9. Choose menus that are not too time intensive to prepare. The idea of a supper coop is to make life easier. Don't get carried away!
10. Budget your meals. Your group may want to agree on a weekly budget per family. Don't let this time-saving idea stress your budget.
11. If you have left-overs, serve them for lunch the following day or freeze them for future weekend meals.
12. Have fun making friends with coop members!
13. Enjoy the extra time with your family or on your favorite projects!
Curious about what we are cooking? See our menu plan for February listed on my recipe blog.
As for what I prepared today: Southwest Lasagna, yellow rice, lettuce salad, and Valentine brownies.
This picture is part of another story I want to tell you soon, but first I must accomplish my "to-do" list for the day.
I didn't want to let the day go by without wishing you a happy valentines, however. I hope your day is special. I'm glad you are my blog friend. You are loved.
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
When I was putting it together, the top layer broke and in spite of all my efforts to repair it, I could not. Then, when I iced it, the icing just got gloppy and gunky (did I make those words up?) and didn't look good at all. There I stood with my plans of taking a showy cake to my friend's birthday party falling apart before my eyes.
After recovering from a panic attack, I decided to cut the cake in half (the party was a small one for six ladies), remove the damaged part and then try to ice it again.
The cake was a hit at the birthday party and Connie now has a new title: Salvager of Cake Flops!
Plug: Connie just started her blog. She loves to cook, and her blog will feature her favorite recipes, kitchen tips and more! Go check it out. I bet you'll enjoy it! mainstreet mom
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
They never felt led to pursue fertility treatments or adoption. My friend's husband once said to her "God's not just going to drop a child in our lap." He was encouraging her to take a step toward treatment or adoption, but his words were "from his lips to God's ears."
One day in 2006, I got a call from a mutual friend who was sobbing. "____ has a baby and wants you to come see her." You can probably guess what a confusing call this was.
We went over as fast as we could and found the couple holding a beautiful newborn girl....and grinning from ear to ear!
It turned out that a couple of months previously, someone had approached my friend and asked her if she would be interested in adopting a baby soon to be born. This pregnancy was an unexpected one for a married couple that had several children and did not feel they could support another. So, my friends began legal proceedings. They were in the delivery room when the baby was born and the precious little girl was handed directly to my friend by the doctor.
That baby is a pretty, joyful, fun toddler now...the apple of her parents' eyes!
I think that not only did God choose to bless my friend with a child, he did it with a sense of humor! He dropped that baby in her lap!
Sunday, February 10, 2008
sons and daughters
kneel at the throne of grace
losers and winners
saints and sinners
one day will see his face
and we'll all bow down
Kings will surrender their crowns
and worship Jesus
He is the Love of God
summer and winter
the mountains and the rivers
whisper the Savior's name
awesome and Holy
a friend to the lonely
forever His love will reign
and we'll all bow down
Kings will surrender their crowns
and worship Jesus
for He is the love, unfailing love
He is the Love of God
Thursday, February 7, 2008
A little more than a year ago, Theresa began having health problems. After many trips to the doctor as well as lots of tests, the doctors were afraid she might have a tumor. They ordered an ultrasound to explore that possibility. What an amazing surprise when the ultrasound determined that the "tumor" was a baby! They were even more shocked to discover this baby was 7-8 months developed. It turns out that even though Theresa was forty years old and had never dreamed she was pregnant, the "health problems" she was experiencing were because she was pregnant!
Can you even begin to imagine what it would be like to be infertile for all those years, have resigned yourself to like without a biological child and then suddenly discover that you will be having a baby in about one month? As it turned out, J.F. was six weeks premature, so Gary and Theresa only knew about their pregnancy for about three weeks before he was born.
We were thrilled that his first birthday party coincided with our recent visit to North Carolina, so we got to attend. It was touching to see this miracle child.....the answer to his parents prayers...playing and celebrating his life! I LOVE it when God glorifies Himself by doing the "impossible!"
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
It's a nice camera that my hubby bought me a couple of years ago. I love it. It takes good pictures. It's digital (which my previous camera was not), and it is small enough to fit in my purse.
But, its just a "point and shoot" and has limited megapixels and optical zoom.
I told you all of that as a HUGE disclaimer! I love to take pictures! I love to take pictures of the things I see everyday. I love to post said pictures on my blog. But as much as I would love to be a professional photographer, I'm not. I'm sure my pictures lack a lot that you knowledgeable ones notice. But I'm gonna post 'em anyway....cuz I like to....and I want to torture you....and I can..cuz this is my blog.........and I like pictures.......
So, today I noticed a beautiful Japanese Magnolia tree (or Tulip Tree, as I like to call them) near a local church. I couldn't resist stopping and taking some pictures. And I'm posting them here cuz I can and I like to torture you.....you get the picture.
So today, as Alabamians took to the polls in the Presidential Primary, it was with pride and gratitude that I walked into our small town polling place. The weather was balmy, promising of Spring, and I took a moment to contemplate the enormous privilege of voting.
But now that I live in a small town, going to the polls is even more fun. It's not just an enormous privilege, it's a fun social event. At the door I was greeted by a friend who chatted with me about dinner. I joked with our music minister and his wife, and I asked another lady about her pregnancy. As I signed my name and picked up my ballot, I planned a breakfast get-together with a pollster. I greeted numerous friends and acquaintances and even discussed a science class with a home school mom.
Those of you who grew up in a small town may think, "what's the big deal?" But I grew up in big cities and going to the polls was just that....walk in, vote, walk out. I love the feeling of belonging and community that I find in my small town polling place! If your state is holding primaries today, get out and exercise your freedom....small town or big city.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
You know, safety dictates that you don't ski while you're pregnant and then there's the whole issue of being unable to leave your children behind because they must have the sustenance that only your body can provide. Multiply that by two and you've got about six years that you can't "hit the slopes." So, when you are physically able to either separate yourself from your babies or bring them along, you've forgotten about how good a skier you might have been, you've lost all confidence and you literally HIT the slopes.
Well, that's my story anyway. There were a couple of spectacular displays of "hitting the slopes" provided by this black-clad, masked skier:
Notice the novice, confidence lacking wedge displayed in the above picture! One of my spectacular displays involved getting on the ski lift. It was quite embarrassing, and I don't think I can bear to relay it to all of the blogosphere.
I eventually managed to look fairly presentable and even skied with my children (this was their first time). It was a beautiful 27 degree day. It snowed the entire day...sometimes very heavily! We loved it! We were grateful for good, warm equipment to keep us warm. After I took a ski break to go buy some socks that actually prevented frost bite to my toes, I was quite comfy.
We did the bunny slopes over and over with the kiddos until they insisted we ride the ski lifts and "go to another mountain." Thus the following picture of the Black Masked Novice pretending to be confident enough in her skills to take her own flesh and blood down the NOT A BUNNY slope!
I guess it all worked out, because I didn't injure or kill my kiddos and our daughter was able to take this snapshot of us (minus my black mask) at the end of the day!