Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ponder This

Briefly checked my facebook account this morning and as I was scrolling through, I found this quote from one of the sites I am connected to entitled "Marriage for Life." It doesn't reference where or who the quote came from, but it is excellent advice.

"A marriage is like a long trip in a tiny rowboat: if one passenger starts to rock the boat, the other has to steady it; otherwise they will go to the bottom together. Even if marriages are made in heaven, man has to be responsible for the maintenance"

Now there is something to think about for the day.....

Hey You...

Hey You ~

And you ~

And you~

What do you think of our new summer hair do's?
While the kid's got their hair cut, mommy is finally letting hers grow.... New do's all around.

Quote of the Day

A good husband makes a good wife. A good marriage is not one where perfection reigns: it is a relationship where a healthy perspective overlooks a multitude of “unresolvables.”

James C. Dobson

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


What Did I Do Today?
What did I do today?
Today I left some dishes dirty,
The bed got made around 3:30.
The diapers soaked a little longer,
The odor grew a little stronger.
The crumbs I spilled the day before
Are staring at me from the floor.
The fingerprints there on the wall
Will likely be there still next fall.
The dirty strekas on those window panes
Will still be there next time it rains.

"Shame on you," you sit and say,
"Just what did you do today?"

I nursed a baby till he slept,
I held a toddler while she wept.
I played a game of hide-and-seek,
I squeezed a toy so it would squeak.
I pulled a wagon, sang a song,
Taught a child right from wrong.
What did I do this whole day through?
Not much that shows - I guess that's true,
Unless you think that what I've done
Might be important to someone
With bright brown eyes and soft brown hair.
If that is true - I've done my share.

-Author unknown

Who Said Worms Are Just For Boys

Hey mom, look what I found!

These bugs aren't so bad.....

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

The Domesticated Diva - Take 1

Ok folks, if you have been following my blog, you probably already know that I am on my quest to become a domestic diva. I'm not really sure what that entails BUT I am trying. First up ~ cooking.

I have hated cooking, despised grocery shopping, even loathed the idea of touching (let alone) preparing food in the past. But the new me is here. I'm committed to turning my life around and becoming a good cook - well maybe just a decent one. And to be truthful (but don't tell my husband), I actually have been learning to enjoy it. Dora the Explorer is on during dinner prep at my house and so cooking has become a whole lot easier. When the kids were younger, dinner preparation time was a nightmare. But since they have matured (and since we have gotten cable), I have now learned to forgo the battle, turn on the TV and hit the kitchen. For all you moms who are able to pull this off without succumbing to the TV - kudos to you but don't judge me - OK!

So I was at Costco this past weekend and found an amazing cookbook. In fact I now have 23 meals on my planner (and amazingly enough, all the ingredients stocked for them.) I was excited to try the first recipe tonight.

When Dave is traveling, I need quick, easy and healthy meals for my kids. Not me - I always seem to eat salmon burgers or cereal - but that isn't an acceptable choice for my children.

So tonight, I made the first recipe from my cookbook - Chicken in a Haystack. I'd love to share it with you. It is super easy, inexpensive and relatively healthy. If you use low fat soup, perhaps substitute chicken for turkey or tofu (not that chicken is all that unhealthy) you could make the dish even healthier. So here it is.

Chicken in a Haystack

1 can (10-3/4 oz) condensed cream of chicken soup, undiluted
2 cups cubed cooked chicken
1/2 cup water
Hot cooked rice

Toppings: Cooked peas, raisins, pineapple tidbits, shredded cheddar cheese, sliced ripe olives, chow mein noodles and/or mandarin oranges

*In a microwave-safe bowl, combine the soup, chicken and water. Cover and microwave on high for 2-3 min or until heated through. Serve over rice. Top with toppings or your choice.

~Ok sounds simple right? Not only simple but fun. I made a pile of chicken/soup mixture on top of rice and the kids were able to go through the 'buffet' of toppings that were laid out and put on whatever they desired. I bought a bunch of ramekin cups and put out the following toppings: peas, corn, chow mein noodles, black olives, cheese, and pineapple. They were required to put on the vegetables but other than that they could pick and choose. The chow mein noodles added a different texture that they enjoyed.

Next time I think I'll put over couscous and try perhaps try another product besides chicken (I'm kind of boycotting chicken.) If you decide to give this quick and easy dish a try, be sure to let me know..... and of course if you'd like to share any tips, dishes, words of encouragement for me, please do!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Perfectly Priceless Day

After getting only 2.5 hours of sleep last night (combined with the 3.5 the night before), I drug my butt out of bed this morning, packed up the kids and headed down to the zoo. Our local Christian radio station was hosting 'family day' and so it was going to be a little extra special. I decided against all odds to try it.

We had a blast, spending more hours there than anticipated. The girls did great - behaved beautifully, and even stopped to let me rest and relax on many occasions.

They enjoyed the animals, rode the carousel, and trialed dipping dots for the first time. There was no whining, fighting or temper tantruming.

After the zoo, we decided our day wasn't done and spent a 1/2 hour on the obnoxious swan paddle boats. I have wanted to do this forever and was so thankful that the attitudes by all today allowed us to successfully paddle the boat over the entire 'pond' without incident.

We came home, barely had time to warm up leftovers, and then packed it up again for swimming lessons. I felt bad for barely even allowing them to breathe today, but the girls stuck with me. I couldn't have asked for a better day (well maybe a little more sleep would have been nice.)

What did you do to today? More importantly, was it memorable?

Father - Daughter Proverbs

I'm just finishing up the new book by James Dobson entitled Bringing Up Girls. It has been an amazing book for me and I would highly recommend anyone who is attempting to raise a daughter these days to pick up a copy - sooner than later. I stumbled on many useful facts, ideas, suggestions that I'm hoping to put into practice. Many that I already have. But chapter 10 was hilarious and heartwarming and I couldn't not share some of these "short proverbs" compiled by Harry Harrison that Dr. Dobson included in his book. I didn't include all of them but the list still turned out to be quite lengthy. I do hope you get a chance to read through them. They are worth the time and effort.

Sit back and enjoy...

*Accept the fact that your little girl will melt your heart anytime she chooses

*Take part in her life now. Don't wait until she's 15 to try and develop a relationship

*Remember, if you yell at a boy not to play with a wall socket, he'll either stomp off or do it anyway. A girl will cry.

*Her mom will show her how to bake chocolate chip cookies. You show her how to dunk them in milk

*Be prepared to watch Walt Disney movies with her some 200 times. Each.

*Never lose the wonder of watching her and her mother together.

*Trust her mom to understand the mystery of little girls. You have yet to figure out the mystery of big ones

*Never, ever, make fun of her

*Give her a picture of you to put in her first purse. If you're lucky, she'll always carry a photo of you

*Make her a Valentines Day card - every year

*Keep her secrets. This way she will begin to trust men

*Never argue with her mom in front of her. As hard as it may be, walk away

*Teach her patience, kindness, and tolerance. If you don't, many years from now you'll wish you had

*Teach her to read between the lines. Remember, though, that she will probably have a better natural ability for this than you

*Encourage her to be kind. Even to the girl nobody likes

*Remember, she needs a strong self-image before she becomes an awkward teen. A father's love can make all the difference

*Accept the fact that the loving, tender angel you've spent the last decade with may disappear sometimes. She will return

*Remember, teenage girls spend hours in their room doing something. No man has ever really figured out what that something is.

*Once she begins to develop physically and sexually, don't pull away from her

*Remind her that the most sacred thing between a father and daughter is trust

*Remember, when you're dealing with a 13 year old girl, for all intents and purposes, you're dealing with a fruitcake

*There will be days when you think you've raised an alien. Those are the same days she feels she's being raised by one

*The day she's born, ask God to guide you in all aspects of raising her

*You will have to teach her how to drive...without making her cry

*Odd-looking boys will start showing up at your house. This is to be expected because adolescent boys are odd-looking

*Let her see, by the way you treat your wife, the way a man is supposed to treat a woman

*Teach her how to look a boy in the eye and say "No"

*Remember, every girl's heart gets broken. There's nothing you can do to fix it. Hunting down the boy won't help. On the other hand, she will also break a few hearts herself

*Take long walks with her. If you just listen, she'll eventually tell you everything that's on her mind

*Remember you're her definition of a man

*Have a look around her room. Take a moment to look at her pictures, her photos, her keepsakes. These are her memories. This was the childhood you gave her

*Prepare for the day when you're not the most important man in her life

*Tell her she is the daughter you always dreamed about

*In the end, let her go

Monday, August 9, 2010

Jesus Bring The Rain

"Bring The Rain"
Mercy Me

I can count a million times
People asking me how I
Can praise You with all that I've gone through
The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly
Change who I forever am in You
Maybe since my life was changed
Long before these rainy days
It's never really ever crossed my mind
To turn my back on you, oh Lord
My only shelter from the storm
But instead I draw closer through these times
So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace
Bring the chance to be free
Bring me anything that brings You glory
And I know there'll be days
When this life brings me pain
But if that's what it takes to praise You
Jesus, bring the rain

I am Yours regardless of
The dark clouds that may loom above
Because You are much greater than my pain
You who made a way for me
By suffering Your destiny
So tell me what's a little rain
So I pray

Holy, holy, holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Quote of the Day

"Paloma" (in a very loud voice at the dinner table) "put your privates down!"

Yep, she was eating dinner naked and that's all that I'm going to elaborate on!

Daily Dose of Encouragement - Round 2

Today after I had fed my children and again shooed them off to their rooms to play, I was led to Ephesians 2:10.

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

That made me stop and think. Why am I here? What is my purpose? What am I supposed to be doing?

I often feel as if I am simply floating through life - doing all I can to just make it 1 more day. During the college years I believed my purpose was to develop relationships and obtain an education. After graduating and moving to New Mexico, I simply hung out (as a new wife), worked a little (as a labor and delivery nurse), and played a lot. I guess I never really questioned what I was supposed to be doing. Those years flew by and suddenly I am a "30 something" wife and mom of two little girls. I work as a nurse (sometimes), am a Sunday school teacher (every other Sunday), volunteer (when I can.) I guess this verse makes me go "what is my purpose?"

Am I supposed to be doing great mission work in China right now? Am I supposed to be fulfilling a calling of full time motherhood? Am I supposed to be working outside my home more? Am I supposed to be involved in ministry more than I currently am? These are all questions that I have pondered over and over in my head. I see those around me following different paths and wondering to myself if I am on the right path. What is God's plan for me? Why was I created?

I trust in Ephesians when Paul wrote "we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Sigh.... I was created for a specific purpose. God has created a plan for me - already - and although I may not know exactly what that is right now, if I keep my heart and mind open, His plan will be revealed. Each and every one of us was created differently and for a different reason. And although there are moms all over the world doing awesome mission works in countries I can't even spell, my calling at this time seems to be very different.

I may not know what God has in store for me, but I trust in Him that whatever it is -it is perfect. It was specifically designed for me, to be carried out by me. There is something very comforting in that. How about you?

Friday, August 6, 2010

Sometimes Silly





Mountain Memories

Last weekend, our family packed up (more like stuffed) the Pilot with just about everything we thought we needed for an overnight camping trip and headed to the mountains for a much needed "break." I'm not sure you can actually consider tent camping a break - but it was fun to get away from the day to day ruckus of the city life.

The girls were so excited and couldn't wait to help me pack up their stuff. I ended up taking at least 15 pairs or panties and 10 stuffed animals. I tried my best to assure them we didn't quite need ALL that stuff but the girls were convinced we did.

We played in the sand, splashed in the water, and attempted to catch up on some much needed rest and relaxation.

And who can resist late night smores?

The girls unfortunately did not get out of doing chores. But for some reason, doing dishes in the mountains is WAY more fun!

Paloma was so convinced she was going to find a bug to catch in her bug net. No luck.

We have 2 more camping trips planned this summer. I may actually end up liking this stuff by the end of the summer. Do y'all have any camping stories you'd like to share. I would love for you to jump off google reader and leave me a message.

Daily Dose of Encouragement

I awoke this morning with a heavy heart. After having a rotten day yesterday, and feeling burdened by many different factors, I awoke this morning with a sense of dread. Usually when I see the sun shining and smell the coffee, I am somewhat refreshed - but not today. It took all of about 2 seconds to remember the whining, crying, disrespectful behavior of my children coupled with the issues and burdens my heart is struggling with and all I wanted to do is pull the covers over my head and go back to bed. I knew I could not avoid this day but rather find comfort in Jesus who will ultimately get me through. Having ignored my Bible studies for quite some time, I made a point to tell my children "you need to find something to do, mommy is reading her Bible." I grabbed some coffee, shooed my children into the playroom and opened my bible - allowing God to find the right page/verse/chapter that would encourage and lift up my heart.

My heart was led to 1 Corinthians 15:58

"Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain."

I often feel like the work/effort being put in around my house, to my marriage, to my children goes unnoticed and unappreciated. I struggle with the fact that I may give it my all only to go to bed exhausted wondering why I even bothered. But it is one tiny chapter in 1 Corinthians that I am reminded why I do what I do.
....because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

God has entrusted me with a wonderful husband and 2 wonderful kids. It is my job to maintain my marriage and raise these children to be God-fearing, God-loving little girls. Although many days I'd rather have Dora teach them their A,B,C's in Spanish, I know that it is my job to turn off the TV and teach them about Noah, or Jonah, or Job. In order for that to happen, my heart must be right - and my heart has not been right.

I am glad that I put my foot down, made us late for our upcoming play date, and opened my bible. God allowed a ray of hope into my heart today that whatever I may do, it will not be in vain.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Hula Baby

I'm a bit behind on my blogging unfortunately - but better late than never right?

A couple weeks back, my husband and I threw a Hawaiian Luau for our friends and their children. I was so excited for this party. I have been planning it and detailing it for a year. My goal was to do a grandiose 'end of the summer' party last year, but timing prevented us from doing that. So we made it a priority to get it down this year.

The kids were excited as well ~ especially when the 'inflatable man' came to put up their bounce house for the day.

I tried to literally invite anyone/everyone I knew with kids. The summer schedules unfortunately did not allow everybody to be there (which is bittersweet because I really did get carried away with invites...)

The kids were allowed to swim, socialize, bounce - really whatever kept their heart's desire that day.

A few photos to commemorate the day.

My desire is that my children want to be at home, find it fun to be at home, and generally think home is a safe and exciting place to be. So the more comfort and enjoyment I can provide for my kids than that is the least I can do.

I want to be known as the "fun house." Hopefully I'll be able to continue this theory and practice through the teenage years when my children will probably want to run from my home.

I had a blast and hope everyone else did as well. Now I'm already getting a start on next year.

Wordless Wednesday

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Mind Reader

I went to wrap my arms around my husband and thank him for a wonderful weekend away in the mountains and his immediate response to me was

"No, you cannot have another baby."

I guess you can tell what I've been thinking about lately.......