Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Tasty Tuesday - Black and White Cheesecake Bars

These were amazing! I've had this recipe sitting in my recipe binder for a few years, but due to my daughter's allergies I either didn't have the ingredients on hand, or chose not to make it since she couldn't have any. But since dairy is no longer a concern, I thought I would give it a try. Oh, boy was this yummy! Thankfully, I have a few more weeks to balance out the weight gained from this dessert before my next prenatal appointment. :)

Black n' White Cheesecake Bars

  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 12 crackers crushed)
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. In a double boiler or microwave, melt chocolate chips and butter, stirring occasionally. Stir in the graham cracker crumbs. Set aside 1/4 cup for topping. Press the remaining crumbs into an ungreased 13-in. x 9-in. x 2-in. baking pan.
  2. In a mixing bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Gradually beat in milk, egg and vanilla. Pour over crust. Sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Bake at 325 degrees F for 25-30 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool. Refrigerate 3 hours or until completely chilled. Cut into bars. Store in the refrigerator.
By the way, if I were to ever write a recipe that used sweetened condensed, I would short the recipe by a few ounces so I could guiltlessly enjoy eating spoonfuls of the milk without concern that I was going to mess up the recipe. Mmmmm...I just love sweetened condensed milk!

After being refrigerated, the crust is very hard. You may want to let it sit at room temperature for a few minutes before cutting in.

I just realized that I failed to get a picture of the finished product. :/

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Tasty Tuesday - Blueberry Apple Crisp

I think this would probably go down in a top ten of family favorites for my family. We inhale this dish, and could happily have it a few times a week--not that we do, because then our blueberries wouldn't last very long.

It's very quick and easy to put together, and is rather healthy. It calls for a very small amount of sugar, and if you really want, that could even be lessened. I haven't actually tried not using any sugar, but you probably could.

The recipe is originally written to be made in individual custard cups, but I make mine in a 9x13 (or this time, in what I think might be an 8x10--not sure, it's just a little smaller). As a result, I quadruple the topping from the
original recipe. I will type out the recipe the way I make it.

Blueberry Apple Crisp

2 1/2 c blueberries
2 1/2 c apples, peeled and chopped

1 c flour, divided

1/2 c brown sugar (note, if you actually quadruple the original, this would be 3/4c)

3/4 c uncooked oats (note, if you actually quadruple the original, this would be 1/3c)
1 t ground cinnamon

1 t ground nutmeg
6 T softened butter (or margarine)

1. Combine fruit in a large bowl and sprinkle with 1 T of the flour.
2. Spread the fruit into a 9" x 13" baking dish.

(Note, if your blueberries are frozen, you will not want to use a stone, as they will make your stoneware cold and will possible cause it to shatter once placed in the hot oven.)

3. Combine remaining flour and sugar in a bowl. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly and resembles course meal.

4. Add cinnamon, nutmeg, and oats.

5. Sprinkle mixture over fruit.

6. Bake at 400 degrees for about 30 minutes or until bubbly.

7. Let stand 10 minutes.
Another note, sometimes the topping may come out more dry and crumbly than you would like. If you don't notice this until it is done baking, you can melt about 1 T of butter in the microwave and then sprinkle it over the topping and place back in the over for about 5 minutes. I've had to do this a few times. I guess my conversion isn't quite accurate. :)

This makes an excellent dessert, breakfast, or snack. It is delicious topped with a good vanilla ice cream or even whipped topping.

Relaxing Education

My daughter will soon be 3 1/2 years old, and has been talking about going to school for about a year. This is in part because most of her church friends are in school (daycare), in part because school is mentioned in stories and tv programs, and probably majorly in part due to the fact that we live across the street from a public elementary school. Every day of the school year for as long as she can remember she has watched school buses coming and going, heard children playing on the playground, and watched children arrive and leaving carrying backpacks and lunchboxes. To her, school is something very exciting!

She has been begging to do schoolwork, especially since she figured out that a young friend (and girl she adores) is doing schoolwork at home. So, even though I hadn't planned to start schooling her for a few more years, I've decided it will be a nice way to put some routine in our days and keep her from begging so much. :)

I take a more relaxed approach to schoolwork, especially at this age. I don't see a need to make a young child sit still in a seat for extended periods of time or to frustrate them with schoolwork when in my mind, they're really still too young to be in school. I believe that children should be permitted to enjoy their childhood--afterall, they only get it once. Children are not adults, and should not be forced to behave as adults. Not many adults handle sitting still very well for extended periods of time, so why on earth should I expect as much from a child with an attention span of maybe 10 minutes?

So what have we done for schoolwork? Simple things that really aren't too much different from what we would do on a normal, everyday basis, but now we call it schoolwork. Both kids work on the same or similar things to keep the peace. They both enjoy doing whatever the other one is doing, and to give one child a different project than the other causes both to become distracted.

I recently printed some play-doh mats, and my 3 year old and 18 month old love them! Really, what kid doesn't enjoy play-doh? And while play-doh is great for stretching a child's imagination and creativity, why not make it an educational tool as well?
My 3 year old loved the challenge of making the "squiggly lines" for the 2 and 3, and preferred to make pancakes rather than balls to stick on the dots.
My 18 month old enjoyed putting play-doh on the dots, and of course took a few taste test of the play-doh.

Another fun thing we've done is finger painting. We were blessed to be able to get a roll of paper for free, and the girls had gotten smocks as Christmas gifts. Last week I purchased paints with the back to school sales going on (because my attempt at making finger paint failed--but I'll try again some time).Unfortunately, I didn't notice that the finger paints were not primary colors, so I haven't been able to teach what colors come from mixing primaries. But we've still played with mixing the colors to see what we come up with, and my daughter finds this exciting. Our plan is for my husband to build an easel for the girls as a Christmas gift, and then we will be able to be a little more comfortable (and perhaps less messy) while painting.

While the girls do these and other activities, I read them their Bible lesson and we review their Bible verses. We also will sing our songs we are learning that week. We learn one hymn and one fun song each week, along with one new Bible verse. It was frustrating myself and my girls to try to make them sit still while doing lessons that required sitting still, so through Money Saving Mom I learned that it's actually more beneficial to give them an activity to do while reading to them. My oldest is still listening, can still answer questions about the story or re-tell the story, even though she had something keeping her hands busy while I read to her. In this case, having a distraction was actually more benficial. When I'm trying to make her sit still she finds distractions that keep her from hearing the story, plus the story is constantly interrupted with, "Sit still." If they have busy work, I really don't have to say anything to them, so the story is read uninterrupted.

Today we enjoyed some amazingly beautiful weather for this time of year, and spent nearly two hours outside! We haven't spent that much time outside since April or May, I don't think! While they played on the playground we sang hymns and some other songs and said our Bible verses. Then I restricted them to the front porch area, and we read our Bible story.

While on the playground we experimented with different textures in the sand. We started with our shoe prints, then used sticks and other objects we found around the sand area to see how they imprinted the sand. My daughter loved making tracks by rolling the pine cone along the sand.

Indoors today we practiced counting from 1-20 for about a half-hour while playing hide-and-seek. We stopped several times to sit down and count 1-20 without hiding to help my daughter remember that there were numbers between 17 and 20. :) Then while I did my exercises, the girls played with legos. They first separated the squares from the rectangles. Then they had to make a tower with a pattern of red-yellow-red-yellow. Then the made a row with a pattern of blue-green-blue-green.

It is my philosophy that children learn most of what they will retain from simple, everyday living. We don't typically sit down and practice numbers or number recognition--or colors, or shapes. From the day I started reading to my children (which was a very early age), I have pointed things out in their story books. We count all of the objects on the page. We point out the different colors on the page. When playing with blocks, we name the shapes as we move them around on the floor or stack with them. When playing with legos, we say the colors as we handle the legos, not just build with them. Every moment and every encounter with a child is a learning experience. They can enjoy their childhood and still learn the basic, educational materials they would be learning in a classroom at a school.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Count Your Blessings - Winter Clothing

Locally we have an area wide consignment sale that is HUGE. I did a post on this sale several months ago. We're now looking forward to the second sale for this year. As I mentioned before, our family survives off of this sale. This sale is how the Lord has provided the clothing needs of our family as well as the toys and other accessories that we've needed.

Well, this season, we really can't even afford to benefit from this sale. With baby number three on the way and still not even half-way paid for, we don't have the extra funds to put into making purchases at this sale, even if they are necessities.

We've been struggling not to be discouraged about our financial situation, and have been trying to focus on keeping our faith and trust in God to provide for us as He has promised. We chose to trust Him for our children and when we would have them. Now we are reminding ourselves that God has chosen to add this new little blessing to our home, and when and how He sees fit, He will provide for our financial needs with this baby. We fail to not focus on, "I don't know where we're going to get that money from."

One huge blessing God has poured into our lives in the last twenty-four hours as a reminder of His faithfulness to care for us is regarding our concern about how we would have things to get the girls through the winter if we couldn't afford to spend money at the local consignment sale. I grew up on hand-me-downs, but it doesn't seem that people within our circle do hand-me-downs. We've never received any for our kids. But as I said, God has provided in other ways, and we've been fine.

Yesterday I pulled out what I thought was the only bin of winter clothes from the girls for last year and went through to inventory what we had and to see what we would need for this coming winter. The girls enjoyed playing dress up as we tried things on to see what fit and what didn't. Thankfully my three-year-old hasn't grown much since last winter, and everything was really baggy on her last winter. Some of the clothes are still baggy on her at this point, and I'm prayerful that they will get us through the short period of cold weather that we enjoy here. Sadly, there was almost nothing for my eighteen-month-old. She had been such a chunky baby last winter that I tagged and attempted to sell most of the things that would now fit her for this winter, because I thought she would be long past that size by the time this winter rolled around. Well, as it is, she really hasn't grown as much as I'd anticipated.

Discouraged, I inventoried what I had for her. My husband and I discussed last night what I would absolutely need for that one and the new baby (which at that point, I hadn't pulled out the bucket of newborn clothes), and we determined that even spending bare minimum, we'd be stretching the funds too far. I half-heartedly prayed about it while talking with my husband about the special prayer time I had had just the day before about trusting God to care for our needs as He has promised.

This morning I went out to the garage to get the bin of newborn clothes and found another bin labeled "Winter 2010." (I know, it's not size specific--that was becoming too much of a headache for me. I just started sorting by season.) So I dragged that box in the house along with the newborn bin. I went through that winter box first and found quite a bit to fit my eighteen-month-old. Enough to meet what would be the bare minimum for necessity. Then I sorted through the newborn stash and made inventory of what I had for a winter baby from birth to six months. Even though this is my second winter baby, there still wasn't much. I really didn't have much for my second child--about 5 sleepers and a ton of onesies. I finished my inventory, set that box aside, and looked at the very small stack of items that I had set aside during this process to sell at the upcoming sale.

I then went to the garage one more time to grab the bin labeled "M2M - winter." The box of stuff to be sold at the sale. It was full of items that didn't sell last winter, and I was simply going to add my small stash of items I collected today to the bin of clothes. I dragged the bin into the house to make room for the handful of items. When I opened the lid I almost squealed in delight!

Until that moment I had forgotten how disappointed I'd been last winter sale when most of my items didn't sell. I was confused because it was decent stuff that I thought would sell for sure. But the sale was REALLY big that season, and it was hard to sort through the items because the racks were so overstuffed. So it was easy for items not to sell. Inside that bin was more than I need for my children for this winter! Including the new baby.

Well, praise the Lord, those items didn't sell. God knew that this winter we would need those clothes. He knew that we would have a new baby on the way and would need the newborn items I had tried to sell last year as an attempt to have money to spend at the sale last year. He knew that because of the new baby on the way we wouldn't be able to afford to buy anything at this current sale. He was providing for the needs of this year a year ago when He allowed my items not to sell!

Now all we really need for this winter are dresses, since my oldest only had one last year, and that's getting a little short, and shoes. And even in the shoes area, we may not need those. It just depends on how these little feet grow! There are a few other needs for the new baby, but very few. Most are just desires. :)

So now what was going to cost us too much, will now cost us very little, if anything at all. What a mighty God we serve!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Beautiful Babyhood

After the birth of my second child, I suffered greatly from post-partum depression (PPD). At the time I didn't realize that that was my problem. I was exhausted! I had an extremely active 20 month old and an extremely fussy newborn, and I was on my own two days after coming home from the hospital. I hated my life, I went through moments of wishing I didn't have my kids, I was convinced my husband hated me, and I felt that God didn't care too much for me either.

When my newborn was six weeks old I got a Moby wrap--that became a lifesaver! I could carry the crying infant any time she needed and still get things done around the home. Most importantly I felt like I could be a mommy to both of my kids at the same time, rather than just one at a time.

Well, that fussy infant reached a point somewhere near six months or so where she wasn't so fussy anymore. She became the sweetest, most pleasant baby anyone could imagine. She has been a great source of joy and entertainment in our home over the last year.

She has also been my baby. She doesn't seem as grown-up to me as her sister did at this age. She just seems like a baby still. Though she definitely has her moments of independence, she is very much a cuddler and loves to be near one of her parents. She says words, but she's not really what I would consider talking. She's not really potty training yet. Beyond those little milestones she still just seems like a little baby and not the big girl that she is quickly becoming.

Over the last few weeks I have felt like I have re-entered that post-partum depression (or perhaps a pre-partum depression?). A few weeks ago my little baby weaned herself from nursing. To some degree there was a bit of relief in this since, being four months pregnant, breastfeeding really wasn't the most comfortable thing in the world. But she had been much more of a comfort nurser than her sister had been. My oldest needed to be encouraged to nurse--she was always too much of a busy body to take time to stop and eat. But my second cares more about food than she does about anything else in life. If she was hungry, she wanted to nurse. If she was tired, she wanted to nurse. If she was hurt, she wanted to nurse. I knew my milk had changed back to colostrum, and eventually she went from nursing a few times a day and through the night, to nothing. I seriously went through a stage of mourning. This beautiful time of connecting with my child had come to an end. She suddenly became much more independent of me, and started to become as much of a Daddy's girl as her big sister.

Also in the last weeks she has gotten much better at doing things for herself. She can climb into her highchair, get herself into her car seat, and once the straps are over her shoulders, she can buckle herself in. She can undress herself, though she is not quite so good at the redressing part. :) She loves to wash her hands and brush her teeth. She enjoys independent play, and in the last few weeks she and her sister have gotten much better at playing together for LONG periods of time. These are tasks that I know I will great appreciate once the new baby comes, but did she have to do all of her growing up so fast?

To top it all off, last week she decided she didn't want to sleep in the crib anymore. For the last several days she has been sleeping in a toddler bed. I know it's really the same size as her crib, but somehow she just looks so small in that bed, but at the same time seems like such a big girl. She's been amazing about staying in the bed. We haven't had a single instance (yet) of her getting out of the bed. (Her sister had been much more difficult!)

I know I can mostly blame pregnancy hormones, but having my little baby be so grown up just makes me want to tear up and sniff a little bit. On some days it makes me want to just cry into a pillow. And any time she crawls up into my lap, I just hold on tight, knowing that these precious baby days will quickly pass, just as they did with her sister. Yes, there will soon be another precious bundle to hold, but I don't want to miss out on a moment with the sweet baby that I have right now.

Tasty Tuesday - Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins (mix)

ALL summer long I've been wanting to share some of the delicious blueberry recipes that my family enjoys, but as I recently explained, blogging fell to the bottom of my priority list this summer. So, now I will try to catch up on some of the tasty recipes I've been wanting to share!

My oldest and I LOVE all things bread. My husband and second really don't care for bread-type items. In my attempt to make our foods healthier I started making bread items with whole wheat flour and/or oats.

I was unable to take pictures of each step of this process as my camera was out of commission for nearly a month. But this is a simple recipe, and I use it as a make-ahead meal of sorts. I make my own muffin mix with this. Since my daughter is allergic to eggs, I use a powdered egg substitute in the mix, but I will include directions for doing this with a real egg instead.
These muffins come out very moist, and usually don't last a whole day around here!

I grab one mixing bowl and 4 containers (I think they may be 3c containers, but it doesn't say on the bottom). I mix up one batch in the mixing bowl and then put the ingredients for four other batches in each of the four containers.

Oatmeal Blueberry Muffins

Dry Mix
  • 1 1/4 cups quick cooking oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 t Ener-G egg replacer
Wet Ingredients
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 T warm water
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 cup blueberries, rinsed and drained
Note: In place of the water and egg replacer you can use just one egg.
I usually use closer to two cups of berries. :)
Note: I often use 1/2 whole wheat flour, 1/2 all-purpose--it does make the muffins more dense.


  1. Combine oats, flour, sugar, baking powder, egg replacer, and salt.
  2. Mix in milk, water, and oil; mix just until dry ingredients are moistened. Fold in blueberries. Fill greased muffin cups 2/3 full with batter.
  3. Bake at 425 degrees F (220 degrees C) for 20 to 25 minutes.
And apparently there are still issues with my camera. Anyway, I label the container with instructions for what needs mixed, what temp to bake, and how long.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Do You Want to Be My Friend?

I our latest batch of books from the library we have one book by Eric Carle (LOVE his books!) called Do You Want To Be My Friend? It's an sweet story of a little mouse who goes from animal to animal trying to find someone, anyone who would be his friend. He first sees the tale of the animal and asks to be his friend, and the when the mouse sees the head of the animal he realizes that animal wouldn't make a great friend. He eventually finds another mouse at the end of the story with whom he can be friends.

I often times feel like that little mouse. I feel so lost and lonely sometimes, and if I'm not careful, Satan can really use my lack of friendship as a means of discouragement. I think I've mentioned before that I've never been good at making friends, and looking back of my years of growing up and going through college, I think I really only ever had three people, aside from my husband, who could actually truly fit the definition of a friend. Now I face a reality that the people who could most closely fall under the definition of a friend are people I've gotten to know through Facebook. But for some reason, I'm just not good at real, face-to-face friendships.

And I can't honestly figure out why.

I'm a blunt person. If someone asks my opinion on something, I may try to be tactful in my answer, but I'm not going to sugar coat my answer or be apologetic for my opinion. Maybe that's a problem? I can be pretty opinionated. But I try to just spout my opinion (outside of my blog) without being asked.

I can be perhaps too open about personal things sometimes. Perhaps as a result of never having a set friend to share things with, if I find someone who I think may be a friend or friendly, I have a tendency of taking advantage of the opportunity to talk to someone. Maybe that's my problem? I really should learn to be a more quiet and stand-offish person.

I've always been gullible, and being a follower is always what kept me in trouble as I was growing up. The only friends I had then were ones who could (and would) use me. Well, I'm not of much use to anyone now. So maybe that's my problem? No one can use me so they don't want to be my friend.

I think I may come across as too abrupt. I like to serve and take care of people. But often times I think I may just come across as pushy in my attempt to help people realize I'm not just throwing out false offers of help knowing they won't accept. When I offer assistance I'm being serious and genuine. Maybe that's a problem. I shouldn't be pushy in trying to help people. I should just offer once and let it alone.

In the last few months I've manage to alienate at least three people, and I'm thinking perhaps a fourth. The three weren't really friends, but acquaintances in good standing, I guess you could say. In two of the three cases I was asked why I take a certain stand on a certain subject. In each case the person disagreed with my answer. One totally blocked me from anything on Facebook and has attempted to be cordial in public but I'm not fooled. The other never responded and has still remained a nice acquaintance, but I was very hurt and upset one day when we were in a place with our kids and I watched my daughter try speaking to her, and the adult ignored her. The third would be a result of poor communication on my part and an unintentional insult. And the fourth? I really don't know what I've done wrong, but I did it. And that one hurts the most because that one wasn't an acquaintance. I really thought I'd found a friend.

Recently my husband encouraged me to go to a ladies' night out which was suppose to be a craft/fellowship night with some ladies at church. I really didn't want to go. But he thought it would be nice for me to have the opportunity to get out, do some crafting that I never have the opportunity to do, and fellowship with adults, which I rarely get to do. Fellowshiping with adults makes me nervous. Anyway. My sweet husband took me to JoAnn's and let me get supplies to work on craft I wanted to do all in preparation for that evening. When I arrived, I sat in the parking lot for at least twenty minutes trying to pep-talk myself into going inside. Once I walked in, I knew I'd made a mistake. I felt like Daniel walking into the lion's den, only I wasn't so confident in the lion's mouths being closed. The event was "hosted" by the one who had completely blocked me from her social network. Talk about awkward. She was standing there greeting everyone as they come in and trying to figure out how to politely skip over me--which she did. I sat at a table by myself and was barely spoken to. I tried to join a conversation at a nearby table, but one lady purposely kept her back to me and another turned her back toward me during the conversation. So I stayed out. I did get to speak with two ladies whom I hadn't met before, and I did enjoy the little bit of conversation I had with each of them. But part of me just knows better than to get my hope up of having some type of friendship with any of the ladies. As soon as I politely could (around people getting up and speaking during the evening) I packed up my bag and brought myself home to pout on the couch and cry to my husband.

I know I need to learn and fully accept that God truly is the only friend I really need. And I need to be content in the companionship of my husband. I'm am thankful for my God and for my husband. I will continue to strive to be content without a female friend.

I really think I can live without girlfriends, but having SO many enemies really bothers me. I know that it's not pleasing to the Lord for me to be at odds with so many people, but I really don't know what to do about it.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

"Boys will be boys." --Really?

I understand there is some truth to the phrase, "Boys will be boys." But I'm getting quite annoyed with the fact that often times mothers of boys seem to use this as some sort of excuse for bad behavior. I have only girls so far, so these words may come back to haunt me one day. But I really believe that it is possible to allow boys to be boys without allowing them to be rude and discourteous to others. My mother raised three girls, and thirteen years after the youngest girl was born my mother was very surprised to discover she was expecting again. This time a boy! My brother is now nearing eight years old, and is definitely a different challenge to my mother that we were as girls. I'm not arguing that there's something uniquely different about the way God designed boys and girls. My mother (as well as many other mothers of boys) has told me many times that you can't keep boys from playing with guns. They're just born with guns on their fingers. I can understand this. God made boys (men) to be protectors, and when a fight is necessary, men are who God designed to go to war. I haven't had the opportunity to be around my brother too much because of the great age difference between us (twenty years!). But I have been around him on a playground or when he's playing with friends, and while he thoroughly enjoys playing rough and playing war-like games with his playmates, I haven't witnessed him being rude to other kids on the playground. He is a very tender-hearted boy, so perhaps one could attribute his politeness to his personality, but I would like to credit it to the training of my mother. My daughter has almost decided she doesn't like play dates anymore because the boys are so rough. I have told her that boys are rough, and God made girls to be gentle and sweet. But when boys are shoving past girls and throwing them out of their way and stepping on them or over them in their attempt to keep up with their battle, that is no longer behavior that can be passed off with a simple, "Well, boys will be boys." No, that is simply rude and inconsiderate behavior. And when another child is asking those rough-housing boys to please leave them alone or to stop, those boys should be trained to be considerate enough to leave that playmate out of their rambunctious behavior. Today I watched one of those boys wrap his arm around my daughter's neck and get ready to body slam her to the ground, and I was greatly angered. A child should never be permitted to wrap his arms around another person neck and body slam them unless he is doing so under the supervision of a trainer in a martial arts program. And to a girl? What happened to training boys to be gentlemen?

As I said, I may one day end up eating my words. But I spoke of this with my husband, and he agrees that while boys will be boys, and boys will do boyish things, they can still be taught to respect others, to be polite, to be considerate, to be courteous, and to be mindful of the feelings of others around them. Boys should be gentleman in training. I'm in no way saying rob a young boy of his childhood and put him through rigorous manner courses. I am a firm believer of allowing children to be children and not forcing them to act like adults when they aren't adults. However, since every moment with a child is a moment of some type of training, there are ways to teach and encourage respectful behavior in young children without forcing or expecting them to be as adults. My 18-month-old is old enough to understand that she is not to hit or kick or bit or push another person. So I definitely believe that a two or three-year-old boy can understand that you treat girls differently than you treat boys. They can understand that boys, if permitted to hit other boys, do not hit girls (or push, or any of the other aforementioned actions). I hope that when I have a boy I can raise him to be a gentleman to young ladies, to be courteous to other kids in a play area, and to be respectful to the adults around him--and all of this without "robbing him of his man-hood" or "turning him into a sissy." I want my boy to be a boy, but not at the expense of others feelings and his own reputation and testimony.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Daddy's Little Girls!
My oldest decided she was going to work with Daddy today, so she went into his closet, picked out a shirt, and put it on. Naturally more of a Mommy's girl, my youngest picked out one of my shirts instead.
Aren't they cute?!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Out of the Loop

So I have majorly been out of the loop with blogging. I've been majorly out of the loop with a lot of things in the last few months, and while I've been trying to pull the rest of the scattered pieces together, blogging got set on a back shelf. It also doesn't help that I think of plenty of things to blog about while away from the computer, but when I get a chance to sit down and perhaps blog, I can't remember what I thought so important earlier in the day.

I stopped blogging, I think somewhere mid-April, due to a severe case of morning sickness. Why is it called morning sickness? I've had four pregnancies, I can definitely attest that there is nothing restricting such unpleasantness to just the morning. Of my four pregnancies, this time was much worse. I seriously spent about 6 weeks flat out on the couch. I wasn't good for much of anything but sleeping and puking (if I could add eating a pooping in there, I'd sound like a newborn!). My home and family were greatly neglected, and thus I could not justify any extra-curricular activities such as blogging.

Toward the middle of this six week period, my cousin died after a hard-fought battle with cancer. So I spent two days in the car with my girls driving to the funeral, two days there, and two days in the car coming back. Praise the Lord, I actually experienced relief from my sickness during that time. The sickness abated around 15 weeks, but it still seemed to take me a while to start getting my act back together. About five weeks after my cousin died, my grandfather died. But thankfully the Lord blessed by providing a plane ticket, and my youngest and I flew to the funeral and back.

So eventually, our home started returning to normal. I started cooking and cleaning again, I didn't spend my whole day in jammies, and my girls had there mother back. I could once again run errands and do grocery shopping. I eventually made myself get back into couponing. I love the savings, but honestly, I hate dealing with sales and coupons. It stresses me out greatly. This month I am determined to return to the couponing full force and start seeing the savings that we were seeing before I was ill. We became a little too free in our spending since April, so we're going to have to almost retrain ourselves, but we'll do it. (Especially since this is the only way that we can humanly see that we'll be able to pay for the baby.)

My other goal is to get back into blogging. I've missed it ever so much. I love to write, and I frequently find myself having thoughts in essay form. But unfortunately I probably won't be able to blog as frequently as I would like. But I will try to do better keeping up to some degree.