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Sunday, March 29, 2009

Sweetness All The Way Around!

I know it hasn't been that long since I wrote a post, but man it feels like I have been away for a long time for some reason. I have not been able to catch up on your blogs, leave comments, or post anything new in a few days because we have been busy little bees!

Here are a few things that happened:

1) The Caroline girl got GLASSES! Check her out!!001

We found out that she is FAR sighted!! HELLO! That will mess with your ability to read just a little!! Unless we just wrote everything on the wall it's no wonder girlfriend has had a little bit of a hard time!! She LOVES to read and was really just trying to truck through, but what a difference this has made for her over the past few days. She definitely will need to get adjusted to them, and she has worn them little by little, but we can not WAIT to see how this helps! YAY GOD!

2)We took our little spectacled chicky on a bowling day with my Special Needs Sunday School Class!!002 

They had such a great time!!

This one guy (named Paul) came to bowl and he got my husband aside.

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Here's the conversation:

Paul: "Hey Steve. Come sit right here."

Steve: "Alright buddy. What you want to talk about?"

Paul: "I was wondering. What did you go and get married to a WIFE for?"

Steve: (look at his posture... so serious as he answers.. and I took that picture as they were having this conversation) "MAN Paul! I have wondered that for the past 12 years! That is a good question!!"

Oh! We all just died laughing! Paul is precious and just a HOOT! Here he is after bowling a good bowl... 004

Just precious!! We love him so much!!

Caroline was taken by this little girl that visited with some friends. She gave up her turn to bowl so that this little girl could have a turn.  And you can see Paul in the background cheering them on!

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SOO sweet!!

And here's Caroline with D'Kali as they pose with their glasses on! Caroline wanted D'Kali to know that she was JUST LIKE HER with her glasses, and D'Kali just grinned. Oh, it will melt your heart!

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Bowling was fun but man we were beat! We had lunch with some friends and then headed home in the pouring rain for a nap! ALL three of us plopped down and snoozed for a bit!! What a day!!

Today is Sunday and after a great day at church we headed over to Steve's family's house to see our sweet little niece. You all prayed for her when she stopped breathing at one week old and had to go back to the hospital. Well, just look at Miss Taylor NOW!! 

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Oh, I could just eat her up!! She has been a booger and hasn't wanted to sleep through the night so we were doing our best to keep her awake some today! Look at those eyes!! She has changed so much.

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Since it has been sick season (and I was sick 3 weekends in a row) we have not allowed Caroline to share her FIRST GRADE GERMS with Taylor. After her little hospital trip we just thought it would be wise to keep them apart and let Taylor have a few weeks to grow and get stronger. SO today was a special day as Caroline met her ONLY cousin for the first time!!

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It has been a fun, but busy few days. So busy, in fact, that it's 9:35 and my 2 sweeties are in the bed snoozing away and I am not far behind.

Hope you all had a good weekend!! I have some catching up to do!! 

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

STILL Trying To Freshen Things UP!

Are you sick of me talking about this? Sometimes I get tired of thinking about what I can do in this room or how can that room look more inviting. THEN I walk in to bare walls in the office and a bedroom that has been unfinished for 5 years and I just can't help it!! I so want our home to be a place that's pretty and relaxing and homey. Ya know?

This PRECIOUS "G" was given to me for my birthday by my friend Emily. I HEART IT! So I decided to help my bare office walls by adding a little ribbon (because ribbon just makes everything better! Oh, yes! It does!) and hanging it in a small bare area! I love it so much!

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I also switched my tables around in my den (and did I take a before picture? Uh, no! And sorry, this picture is sort of dark!) and I put this more formal table in the corner where I have more fabric on some corner windows. I also "shopped my house" and brought this little white chair down from my guest bedroom and added it to the seating area. I don't know if it will stay like this forever, but I like the change and the white and dark woods together. The chair is really cute and no one ever saw it but my mom and dad when they come to stay!

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If you are cute you need to be seen!! I'm just sayin'!

I have also been trying really hard to freshen up my menus at dinner. It is so easy to get into the same ol' recipes over and over again! The last time I went to the grocery store they had whole chickens for 59 cents a pound!!

Now, have I ever cooked a whole chicken? Nooooo! But could I pass up that bargain? NO! I mean a whole chicken for less that $3 is a steal and those women were buying 3 and 4 at a time!! I wasn't going to look like I didn't know what I was doing so I bought 2! The entire time I shopped I was trying to think about what the heck I was gonna do with 2 whole chickens, but none the less, I paid for them and brought them birds home!

Sunday I put a chicken in a big bowl with some water and salt and I let it sit overnight. Yesterday morning I rinsed it off, dried it with paper towel, cleaned it out (YUCK!) and put it in my crock pot after I put some herbs and butter on it. I cooked it all day until it was falling off of the bone and OH MY WORD! It tasted like a roasted chicken from the grocery store!! And I have enough left over to put into some soup or something... and it's already got flavor!! LOVE that!

Isn't trying new things fun?

Ok, my next post can't be about this dumb old house! I mean, I love to decorate, but there's more to life! There are things like Bible studies that change your life, kids that get new glasses and friends and family that you love... that's what really matters!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

A Sweet Surprise!

Oh, I love surprises! And today when I logged on I saw this waiting for me!





Susan over at Count It All Joy had given me a sweet little blawg award. Isn't she sweet?

Ok, to receive this I am suppose to:

1) Confess 5 things I am addicted to

2) Pass it on to 5 deserving bloggers

5 Things I am addicted to:

1) Studying God's Word. I am just so out of whack when I don't have my quiet time. My attitude is hard enough to control without a little "get it in line" from Jesus every day! I NEED it and I want it and I crave it and I love it!

2) My man! I have shared before that I am married to my exact opposite, but what a blessing he is to me. He listens to my crazy girl talk! He laughs with me. He challenges me and supports me and he's just the best! I LOVE me some Steve!!

3)Church. I can not think of another place that I would rather be. I love the people and I love that we all have a common purpose in serving our Lord. He is doing a work in that place like never before and I just thank Him everyday for that!

4) Blogging... yes, it's true. I love seeing how people decorate their homes, spend their time, serve the Lord, deal with frustrations of life and what they find amusing. It's fun to make new friends and learn more about others through blogging.

5)Friends! I LOVE MY FRIENDS! Going to lunch, studying God's word, talking, crying, laughing, sharing... all that goes into friendships just make me smile. I love that I have friends that I can be real with and who love me anyway. God has blessed me with amazing women and I am eternally grateful!

Ok! I think there are LOTS of deserving bloggers but I will pick...

Jennifer for hanging in when she thought she might stop her blog!

Faith for helping so many others get their blogs beautified!

Valarie for blogging about how God is at work in her life.

Amy for sharing about her new adventures as a newly wed.

Nikki for keeping us smiling with the adventures of those three precious blondes!

Stop by and give 'em some love! :)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Trying To Freshen Up a Bit!

A few months ago we decided that we needed to get a new TV and TV stand since we were SO behind the times with our rabbit ears!! Not to mention the fact that we would have had no TV reception had we stayed with the old TV set up so we had to do something!

Well, here's the TV that I wrote about in a previous post.

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It's cute. I like the stand, but the wall above it was all new territory for me since we had always used a large armoire to house our large dinosaur of a television. After several attempts and ideas that didn't trip my trigger (to quote my father!) I decided to try this:

Barn Stars!007

 

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I think it looks ok, but the decorators say that you should group things in 3's or 5's and this is obviously a 4! I have a beige barn star but it made the wall and room look too patriotic because those grey looking stars are actually shades of blue. Red, White and Blue. Uh, no.

So I am living with it for a while to see how I feel about the stars. AND I thought I would ask you for your honest opinion. Go ahead! Shoot straight with me. I can take it!

Another thing that I have wanted to do is add more white to my kitchen. I am seriously debating painting the cabinets white because I have those lovely, boring,  brownish cabinets that they put in all houses. HOWEVER! Our friends, (I am having trouble linking to people here! What's that about?) Chad and Faith, gave us this great framed picture of our last name for Christmas and I have wanted it to be in a prominent place in our home because I just love it!

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Isn't it cool? So I put that up on top of our cabinets and balanced it on the other end with my other barn star. What do you think?

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See what I mean about the brown? BORING! But I do love, love, love the picture with the name so this will probably stay.

I have also been OVER the color of our front door and shutters. We get the sun blazing the front of our house all day long and the paint is just so faded. I wanted to add some interest and I love the cottage look so here's what I made for the door. It may be a little much, but I like it! 

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Are the flowers big enough or WHAT?

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So, that's my spring freshen up so far! My summer freshen up just may be those cabinets so stay tuned!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

This One Was For the Girls!

This past weekend was a SUPER busy one!

Super busy because we had seven 8th grade girls and one leader at our home for the youth weekend at our church. The weekend is called Disciple Now and they had 2000 students attend the event this year. 2000!!!! Wow!

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So our little group stayed with us from Friday night until Sunday morning and they were typical 13 year old girls... running around, giggling, and just being kids!! Eight girls running around plus Caroline ...the 7 year old that desperately wanted to be 13!

(Girlfriend slept IN her sleeping bag on her bed because the big girls were in their sleeping bags in the playroom. She cracked me up!)

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I made a little bag with a small gift for each girl and of course Caroline needed one!

We picked them up after their conference on Friday night, brought them home to settle into our playroom and fed them snacks. You KNOW how excited girls get about spending the night so no one could really sleep. EXCEPT ME! I have had a horrible cold so I told the leader to keep them in the playroom and that I was headed to bed. What a FUN hostess I was!!!

Anyway on Saturday morning they were up at 7am, had their quiet time and some cinnamon rolls and then they were off to their morning conference at 8:30. WOW! Some sleepy looking chicks left our house that morning, but nothing compared to Sunday morning when they all had to be up, ready for church and packed to go home. Bless 'em.

On Saturday they were suppose to have a mission project that was outdoors, but it was so cold and raining so they had to cancel. They came back to our house, put on their pj's and did what girls do best.. TALK! They talked about everything you can imagine and when they got bored with that they decided to go out and jump on our trampoline... in the freezing cold rain! Ah yes... teenage girls!

I think they had a great time hanging out and studying God's Word, and it was pretty fun to have them staying in our home!

To add to the fun Caroline and her daddy had a Daddy/Daughter Dance at our church on Saturday night. 

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I wish SOOO bad that I could have been a fly on the wall!! I understand that they were the first ones on the dance floor because my child is like her mother and when she hears music it must be time to dance!! AND my husband is the POLAR opposite. He said they were the two on the floor with the least rhythm, but the most enthusiasm... OH GOSH! I wish I could have seen that!!! Don't you!?

He was such a good sport and followed her lead. She was there to part-ay (apparently) and he wasn't about to squelch her fun night! Go daddy, go daddy... go, go, go Daddy!

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Anyway, they did the electric slide (and Caroline told her daddy to "Move out of the way, I need some more room!" ha!!), the limbo, had their picture made and they played a few games. They ate all sorts of fun stuff and in Caroline's words, "All us girls spun around in our dresses mom! It was so cool!" 

Needless to say that by Sunday afternoon we were all POOPED! The girls were gone, the house was quiet and we lay down for a long, long nap!

Friday, March 13, 2009

Here's a Little Randomness For Ya!

Well, there's lots going on but none of it sounds like stuff to blog about so we will just go with some random thoughts for today... how's that??

1) We have been getting ready for Disciple Now weekend at our church and we are a host home. That means that a group of girls (at our request!) are coming to stay at our house for 2 nights and they will take part in a teen conference at our church during the night tonight and the day on Saturday! I like hosting but....

2) I have a STINKIN' COLD! Dag GUM IT! Last week this time I had strep!! COME ON PEOPLE! Enough is enough already!

3) My husband has had the same cold so we are just a blessing to one another right now. JUST a blessing!

4) I worked out twice this week and I am so sore that I can just hardly stand it. Mainly my abs are sore and that is usually hard for me to do... since they have so much padding and all...

5)It's cold again. I am really tired of the cold/hot/cold patterns. BUT God didn't ask my opinion so I will deal with it! He's in control anyway and I am so glad!

6) I am almost finished with the Esther study and let me just tell you... YOU NEED TO TAKE IT! NEED TO!! SOOO good. Oh. My. Word. So stinkin' good!! And Beth Moore just gets more hilarious with age. She is so funny and very open and it's really good! REALLY! (are you convinced?) It's good.

7)Last week I got to take a special needs student to worship for the first time!! I can't believe I haven't told ya'll this!! He is so precious... let me find his picture... hang on... 009

THERE he is! That's Aaron and he's PRECIOUS!! Beautiful smile and he's learning to talk more and more. WELL... we went to worship and he LOVED it! He was playing air drums and he watched my friend, Valerie's husband while they were singing.. so into it and just behaved so well! It was so awesome!! And when we left he got my hand and said, "Fun!" MELT MY HEART AND TAKE ME TO JESUS!! Oh my word!! It was awesome!! When his mom picked him up she got teary when I told her about it. I LOVE MY JOB!!

Ok... guess that's it. Hope you all in blawgland are good. I need to catch up a little on your lives so I'm off to catch up on some reading! Have a great weekend!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Clean Queen

Do you have a person in your life that just astounds you with their ability to keep their house clean?  Now hear me... I don't just mean their house... I mean  their HOUSE. Garage, yard, bathrooms, kitchen NEVER has stacks of papers, office.. ENTIRE house... CLEAN all the time!

Well, lucky me, for me it's my mother-in-law! Now, before you start thinking that this is a bash-my-mother-in-law-post just think again because it's NOT! This is a HOW DOES SHE DO THAT post! Ok? Just clearing that up! Some of you lurkers might know my mother-in-law. And I LOVE her. She actually amazes me!

The reason that I am even thinking about this is because just today I worked out, came home, washed my car, swept my garage, cleaned all of the car wash stuff up, swept my laundry room (and felt like I needed a nap!)....  thought I had things looking pretty good and then walked into the kitchen. TA DA! Papers everywhere, dishes in the sink, clean dishes in the dishwasher that need to be unloaded... IT IS NEVER EVER ENDING! And just Saturday I worked on my den and kitchen area and have been working to declutter for a few weeks now. WEEKS!!

Anyway, I wish I had pictures of her house because her garage is clean... and it's ALWAYS clean. Her house is so organized and it's ALWAYS organized and you never see ANYTHING out of place. I mean you can go over on a Tuesday morning, Saturday night, or a Thursday afternoon and it always looks the same!! Sometimes the paper is lying on her counter but that is IT! I mean bills are filed, no dishes anywhere, it always looks dusted and clean, and I am just totally amazed. Does she just never sit down?? I'm not sure.

One thing that she has said is that she makes being neat and clean part of her life style. Like she dries her shower door and walls when she finishes drying off so she hardly ever has to clean her shower because there is no mildew or soap scum build up. And when she does clean bathrooms she takes a LONG time cleaning every single spot so that the clean lasts. She doesn't just hit the high spots.. she cleans EVERYTHING!

She also pays bills as soon as they come in and she files the information right then. They never lay on the counters. She does not keep junk mail lying around. If it's not important to her right then she throws it away.

She also has funny places that she stores things (like her foyer has a pretty marble topped dresser sitting in it and it's really pretty, but the drawer is full of crayons and coloring books that Caroline uses when she goes to Grammy's) but she has a place for everything and she uses her storage space well. Her office area has lots of built in shelves and if you open the cabinets on the bottom that's where she keeps toys for Caroline. There are no toy boxes or baskets to make it look cluttered. DANG!!!

Anyway, I just wondered if any of you had someone in your life that just amazes you with their ability to make their world clean and beautiful??? Or is it just me??

Oh... and the other thing is that her husband is not a pack rat (or at least she doesn't let him be) and she doesn't have a seven year old. NOT slamming my family... just saying that those are the facts around here. Oh, and she doesn't spend time blogging and reading other people's blogs. You think THAT might be part of my problem???

Friday, March 6, 2009

Disability? Delay? WHAT IS IT?

A few weeks ago I posted about our daughter having an MRI and that the results were good… they saw no abnormalities

Today we actually met with the neurologist and wanted to know where we go from here. While they didn’t see any flat spots on her brain (because our brains are bumpy) and they didn’t see any loss of cell migration or abnormal development we do know that we still have a kid who deals with anxiety (at 7 years old!) and she exhibits behaviors that are different from the average kiddo.

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I will explain a little about what I mean. When she is at school, for example, she will hold onto the sides of her chair and do this rocking motion that seems to take her into another world. She gets this look on her face like she has stepped out of her body and she’s in la la land. She can’t seem to come out of it until she is redirected or something catches her attention that interests her  more than rocking. It almost seems like an autistic kid that self stimulates by watching their hands or spinning, BUT she does not do it at home…. unless she’s playing on the computer. Interesting, huh?

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We think that she does this to help herself deal with the stimulation around her. The sound of kids shuffling around and talking, a teacher’s instructions, papers, expectations to do work, etc. are all coming at her at once and we know that she is ultra sensitive (though it’s getting better) to her surroundings. (She can gag at the smell of toothpaste! Ultra sensitive! A “Sensory Kid” is what they call ‘em.) SO the surroundings make her anxious and the behavior presents itself. 006

(She has other anxious behaviors like asking the same questions over and over again when she’s uncertain about a situation, she’s showing some frustration over not keeping up in math, she talks and talks and talks when we are in new places and she will talk to ANYONE or she is extremely quiet and internalizes the situation until it’s over… like going to the doctor.)

Today the doctor wanted to discuss putting her on medication that would potentially help her deal with the extra serotonin that her brain produces that causes her to be anxious. He said that sometimes when the MRI shows nothing you begin to treat symptoms and in this case it seems that anxiety is a symptom that she deals with.  (WELL, YEA!)

Thing is.. the medication is an anti-depressant! Dag gum it!

Ya know, if she were a diabetic we would put her on the meds for that. It’s just that no one wants to put their SEVEN YEAR OLD on ANTI-DEPRESSANTS! THINK ABOUT IT PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!

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Her OT (who I LOVE and who I think knows her very well) says that being in school with the kids is really really good for her. She sees kids with normal levels of anxiety and they can model appropriate behavior for her since she is an only child. It’s also good for her to be socialized with these kids since she is in a conservative Christian school and most of the kids also come from great families who love Jesus.  I really don’t think that her school is causing any of the anxiety and to be honest… she has done this since she was 4! We have tried redirecting her, therapy and all sorts of things to help her deal with all that she seems to struggle with and so far she is taking little steps, but not overcoming!

I feel confident that the Lord is directing our every step with her. She seems happy and she’s growing. This is just another decision that I pray He will just be in total control of as we press on! It would just be great if He would set the tree in my front yard on fire if it is a total yes! You know.. the whole burning bush thing would be great!!

Does anyone know why raising kids has to be SOOOOO hard? Anyone? I was really hoping a manual was going to pop out along side her the day she was born. No such luck I’m afraid!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Important Things to Remember

Do you know those things that have that fly with those propeller things on top? You know, you wear head phones to communicate inside and they can land on the tops of buildings?

At my house they are called HOPTOCOPTERS!

Yes, that is what they are per one little 7 year old and we are sticking to it! NEVER TELL HER THE DIFFERENCE! 013

Also, if you are having a snack of apples on the little ottoman in my den you MUST be having THE LORD’S SUPPER for Pete’s sake!

AND if you are tired you definitely need to take a nap with your sleeping bag, a baby doll and a pillow. NOTHING LESS WILL DO! And you must pull them all downstairs because, heaven forbid, that you sleep in your room where there is a bed already!

AND if you are taking dance lessons you NEVER need help changing your shoes! You are BIG and you can do it with no help what so ever… do not even ask! Thank you very much.

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It’s important to read your Bible every day and when you come downstairs in the morning and see your dad praying on his knees… then you need to get on your knees and pray too. That’s how it works.

Also, it’s important to hug your mom’s neck REALLY REALLY hard as soon as you get home from school because you missed her so much.

Oh my goodness. I could just eat her. Precious, little girl.