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Sunday, March 30, 2008

I've Got a Rep to Maintain!

What would you do if you found out that negative information was coming up about you on search engines? I would be pretty mad at first. After I stopped crying to my husband, I would contact the reputation management experts. This company will help you regain your good reputation online!

We don't often think about these kind of things until it is too late. So head on over and get their list of 10 ways to protect and enhance your online reputation as well. You'll be glad you did!

Friday, March 28, 2008

My 1st Giveaway!

I can hardly believe it is almost time for my 100th post! In honor of my 100th post I am giving away a package of goodies with a "100" theme! Here it is:

The winner will receive Rick Warren's best selling book "The Purpose Driven Life" (I know that should be underlined but I can't figure that out!), Tazo Green Tea, Keith Urban's Greatest Hits CD, Burt's Bees Peppermint Shower Soap, Method Cucumber scented All Purpose cleaner, and a $20 Target gift card!

So how is this "100" themed, you ask? There are 40 chapters in the book, 20 bags of tea, 18 songs on the CD, $20 on the gift card, + 2 single items = 100! Plus these are all things that I enjoy. Wait until you smell the Burt's Bees Soap. If you are near a Target, go smell one right now, I'll wait... And the Method cleaner is non-toxic so I don't feel bad using it when my children are in the room. I hope you like it as much as I do.

Now for the important part, how can you win this? Simply leave me a comment and let me know what your favorite item in the giveaway is. You'll get all of them anyway. I just want to know for the future. I will give you a second entry if you post about it on your blog with a link to this post. This contest will end on April 11th. I hope to have my 100th post up around that date and I will announce the winner on my 100th post. If you do not have a blog make sure you leave me an email address so I can contact you. The winner will be drawn out of a hat by one of my children. Good luck everyone!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I Love This Show

With all this spring break travel and craziness, I have fallen so far behind on my Tivo watching. I finally got some time today to watch some shows that I recorded a few weeks ago and I just had to tell you about a show that I absolutely love. I read about it months ago and waited for the premier episode and I can't believe I just now got to see it! I hope you are all watching:

Oprah's Big Give

Here is a preview from you tube:

Can I tell you why I loved this show? I was just reading on Jacki's blog today about how spoiled J.Lo's twins are. When I see their nursery and think of all the things that money could have been used for while still supplying them with a very nice nursery it makes me nauseous. So this show actually shows people trying to outgive each other!

They start with the same amount of money and the same time frame, but they are trying to make the biggest difference in someone's life. There have been some great stories, yet I still get the reality TV drama that I need from a TV show. Its a win-win situation! If you're not watching yet, this is the Sunday that you need to tune in.

For my regular readers, keep your eyes out for my 1st ever contest! I am coming up on my 100th post so I hope to have a giveaway up soon to get everyone ready for my big 1-0-0!

Thankful Thursday- Safety

There are so many things that I take for granted on a daily basis, but this week I just want to take a minute and be thankful for the Lord's protection on me and my family this past week.

My kids were out of school for spring break so we took the opportunity to do a little traveling. Hubby chaperoned our church youth group on a trip to the beach. Bless his sweet heart. If that doesn't earn a jewel in his crown in heaven, nothing will (grin). He totaled about 11 hours in a church bus with adolescents!

I spent one day in Huntsville, Alabama; one day in Selma, Alabama; and 3 days in Kentucky (almost to Cincinatti, Ohio). Those 3 trips totaled about 23 hours in a vehicle with 2 small girls!

We always pray the night before a trip and ask God to keep us safe while we travel. While we were in Kentucky we called back to family in Birmingham and heard about this awful car accident that took the life of 4 teenagers. You can read about it in the article from The Birmingham News here.

I realized how important God's protections was right then and there. I know that He is in control and He has a plan for these families who are grieving so right now. But as we pulled in safely from that last trip, I have never been more grateful for the Lord's protection on me and my family. I hope that is something I never for granted again.

To read more Thankful Thursday posts go to Sting My Heart.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Tickle Me Tuesday - Easter funny

In honor of Easter this past weekend, I hope you enjoy this comic strip that was in our local paper on Sunday. You will probably have to click on it to enlarge it enough to read it, but I think it is worth it! Hope you enjoy it as well. You can also read the daily For Better or For Worse strip written by the talented Lynn Johnston by clicking here.

I don't know if you made it to church on Sunday or not. Our church was packed and I was thrilled to see so many people in the Lord's house!

To see more Tickle me Tuesday posts, head over to Jacki's blog.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter

Happy Easter!

I hope everyone is having a truly blessed Easter Sunday! Here is my family dressed in our Sunday best for church this morning. It's nice to know we can clean up when we try! Ha!My girls were actually being very sweet to each other depite the large amount of candy they had already ingested by this time of day!

My dress is absolutely darling, but I had to cover it with a cardigan because we got hit with another cold spell this weekend after weather in the high 60s and low 70s all week. The girls had a white sweater, too, but they were misplaced by the time we returned from church and tried to take pictures. Oh well, you can see their dresses better! Does it really matter if they are freezing?
We coaxed Dad into an Easter picture as well. Please forgive my sweet Abby. She's a blinker like me and the sun was bright but not warm!

Enjoy a wonderful day with your families!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

I'm Back

I sure hope you've missed me at least a little bit! This has been a crazy week! My girls were on Spring Break so we traveled to Huntsville, Alabama one day; Selma, Alabama one day; and we just returned from a 3 day driving trip to Kentucky on a church bus! Please forgive me for not posting for a few days. I will catch up tomorrow!

Until then, go check out the place I visited in Kentucky. It's called The Creation Museum. I will post more info and pictures tomorrow or Monday.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Tickle Me Tuesday - Edition 1

Welcome to my first Tickle Me Tuesday post hosted by my friend Jacki! She has been doing these for a while and has just begun hosting it. It is designed to share the funny things we always stumble upon, and up until now, I have not had anything to share - Boo Hoo!

Well, we spent yesterday at my sister in law's house and she showed me the funniest video that I just have to share with all of you. She actually saw it on another blog so I apologize if you've already seen it.

I don't know if this family is actually a homeschooling family that is poking fun at itself or just a large family that thinks homeschooling is a little odd. My personal disclaimer is that I know tons of homeschooling families with lovely, well-adjusted children. I also know a few kooky ones and I refuse to name names to protect the innocent!

With that being said I present to you The Homeschool family, Addams family spoof:

For more Tickle Me Tuesday fun go to Jacki's blog, Moving at the Speed of Life.

I Got an Award

Look at this sweet award I got from my friend Jen yesterday.

I love reading her blog because she is always so positive and fun. She is also a faithful reader and commenter on my blog. What a great encouragement she has been to me. Thanks Jen for my very first award! The fact that it's an Easter themed award means a lot to me :) Go visit her blog today. She's hosting a great meme called Heads or Tails that is a lot of fun!

I am going to pass this award on to two other great friends, Jacki and Dee. They have great blogs that are lots of fun, too. Jacki is hosting Tickle Me Tuesday today as well. Make sure you go visit them both as well! Thanks for being such great friends girls!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Lost and Not Found

I don't know if your children are like this, but why do kids always seems to lose the most expensive or most treasured toys yet keep every free kids meal toy they ever acquire?

We have boxes upon boxes of junk toys! You know the ones. You get them for free at any drive-through and if your kids see you throw them away, they cry. They don't really want to play with them, but proclaim that each one is their very favorite!

Now, my sweet Abby has one treasured baby doll that she calls "Tickle" because she likes to tickle her yarn hair as she falls asleep. She has kept this doll since she was about 3 (she is now 7). It has been misplaced before, but this time it has gone missing for about a week and we have turned the house upside down.

There is also the subject of a missing Nintendo DS that she just received for her birthday in November. Now, she is not quite as anxious as Mommy is to recover the DS, but Mommy knows how much the DS cost!

She of course has no idea where she left either one and has about a 3 minute attention span for looking for them. We even approached a higher power tonight and prayed that God would help us to think clearly and remember if we had seen them anywhere! Is that bad? I apologize for hogging His time on such a silly matter, but we are at our wits end!

My big question is, when we finally find the DS (it's got to be here somewhere), do I keep it away from her for awhile as a punishment to teach her to be more responsible? What kind of rules can I set up to help her be more responsible with her more expensive toys? We try to teach her to take care of all of her toys, but look where that's gotten us! Help, please!

Saturday, March 15, 2008


Why is it that thunderstorms seem to always come in the middle of the night?

Last night my nephew spent the night with me, and naturally hubby was out of town chaperoning a youth trip for our church to the beach. I had been a responsible parent when I heard that bad weather was coming our way and stayed up late to watch the weather report on the news. The nice weatherman said that severe thunderstorms would come through our area between 5 and 10 this morning. I thought we would be fine and hoped that it wouldn't get bad until after we were all awake.

Imagine my surprise when I was awakened at 2:45 this morning to flashes of lightning, howling winds, and hail on my roof! I started running around shutting down computers, unplugging TVs, and checking on amazingly still asleep children. After I finally got back in bed at 3:30, guess who couldn't get back to sleep? My dog was going nuts in his kennel! Every time I heard any creak in or outside of the house I thought my sweet nephew was trying to find his way down to my room! I think I finally got back to sleep around 5:30 this morning! I am one tired Mommy (and Aunt Sissy)!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Win a Wii from Charter

I heard about this on our local radio station yesterday and thought it was a very intriguing idea. Charter cable offers high speed internet as one of their many services to their customers. They are now extending a terrific promotion on top of their already fantastic cable, internet, and telephone packages.

Starting on March 12 and ending on March 26, you can Click Here for a Chance to Win a Nintendo® Wii™! You have the awesome opportunity to bid on Charter's High Speed Internet for Life service. The bidding will start at only $10. Can you imagine not having to pay for internet again? And have your own Wii as a bonus! I told you it was an awesome opportunity!

We got a Wii last fall for my husband's birthday. Every once in a while he actually gets to play it because our children are on it all the time! I have some friends who have been looking for one all over our city. Now, I can send them to get their internet service and their Wii all at the same place. So head over to Charter's web site and put in your bid. I would love to see one of my faithful readers win this, if I don't beat you to it!

I'm an Awful Cook, but ...

Look what I made last night!

Usually when I cook, I make things straight out of a box. We're talking Hamburger Helper, taco kits, even spaghetti straight from the jar (I do add meat). If it's not easy, we don't eat it!

Well, we have been watching the Biggest Loser this season and trying to get in shape as best we can. My sweet hubby is even going to the gym several times a week and looking quite good. You can imagine how our eating habits are not contributing to his weight loss goals!

A few weeks ago, Bob Harper (one of the trainers on the Biggest Loser) mentioned the ZipLoc Zip and Steam bags and talked about how easy they are to use. Well, as you know, easy is my language! So I immediately bought them, but didn't use them until last night!

It was so easy and tasted great! Here's what I did: I cut up 1/2 of a fresh zucchini, put in some baby carrots, broccoli and cauliflower (they came pre-cut and washed). Then I added about a teaspoon of olive oil and a sprinkle of seasoned salt and popped it in the microwave for about 3 minutes. It wasn't quite done so I added another minute to finish the carrots and it was perfect! I will definitely do this again.

Has anyone else tried these? I have 9 more bags and want to try some more recipes!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Getting Ready for Spring Break?

Many of us are either getting ready for or just coming off of Spring Break. So here is my Spring Break funny:

Q. What did one oyster say to the other oyster?
A. Just a minute. I've got something stuck in my mouth!
Sorry, that was bad! I was given the task of coming up with my own joke about oysters to help make you more aware of Gulf oysters benefits and safety. Especially as we approach Spring Break, there will be lots of visits to the beach and a huge increase in people eating oysters. Before you plan and take that trip, make sure you visit Be Oyster Aware and educate yourself. You will learn that oysters are an excellent source of zinc, vitamin B-12, and omega-3 fatty acids. But make sure you evaluate the risks as well so you are informed and take care of yourself. Have a great Spring Break!

Thankful Thursday- Forgiveness

I know it's been a few weeks since I've done a Thankful Thursday post. It's not that I haven't been thankful, I've just been busy with illnesses and Bunko!

Last night, my youngest daughter Alyssa (almost 5), was having a little spat with her sister Abby (7). So Alyssa decided that she needed to hit her sister because of this injustice! (I promise I really am thankful for something here) After we discussed how we don't hit because we are mad at someone and she went to apologize to her sister, I told her there was someone else she needed to apologize to. This was probably the first time that I felt like she was old enough to understand that the things we do wrong are sins and that God forgives our sins if we ask Him. So we talked about that and I told her we needed to pray and tell God that she was sorry and ask Him to forgive her.

She cried because she didn't want to tell Him. I explained to her how when we ask Him to forgive our sins He chooses to forget that it happened. It really struck me how much like my daughter I am. I don't want to tell Him when I've messed up. Even though I know what a precious gift that forgiveness is! I've always hated acknowledging that I've done something wrong. It was so important for me last night to help her through that and in turn to help me see how important it is for me to continually accept God's forgiveness! What a precious gift!

I pray that each of you who reads this blog knows that God loves you so much that He sent His only Son Jesus to die for our sins over 2000 years ago. God raised Jesus from the dead and He is now living in Heaven and will come back for us to take us to Heaven to live with Him one day. This is why we will celebrate Easter next weekend because of this wonderful gift!

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

For more Thankful Thursday posts go to Sting My Heart.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

WFMW- Alarm Clock

If you are looking for my Ultimate Blog Party post click here.

I don't know if you are as put off as I am about the time change from this past weekend, but these past few mornings have been awful! My kids have had a hard time waking up and I can't blame them because it's been rough on me as well.

However, I am here to tell you about the greatest thing in the world that my hubby gave me for Christmas that saved my behind this weekend! As you may or may not know, President Bush changed the weekend that we spring forward and fall back for Daylight's Savings time a few years ago. I have owned a SmartSet Alarm Clock that sets itself for about 7 or 8 years. Well, he did not realize that President Bush changed the weekend and woke me up 1 hour early on the wrong weekend (yes I refer to my alarm clock as "he", my Tivo is a "he" as well!). This did not become a problem until the second seasons time change when I forgot that it was going to happen again! It is no fun to shower at 6:00 in the morning when you think you're showering at 7:00!

So here is what my sweet hubby gave me for Christmas:

This is the Emerson Research SmartSet Clock Radio. This weekend, he changed automatically for me! Wasn't that nice? My alarm went off right on schedule. When we woke up Sunday morning, he was set correctly and my hubby's clock was still an hour behind. I should probably get him one, too, right?

This clock is so great! I love how big the numbers are because I'm blind as a bat without my glasses or contacts. It has 2 alarms, so I set one for our weekday wakeup time and one for our Sunday wakeup time. And the alarm starts out soft and gets louder! It's so awesome to not wakeup to a shrill alarm. There's also a cool thing that will project the time onto the ceiling. My kids love that feature.

So that's what worked for me this week. To see other WFMW posts head over to Rocks in My Dryer.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

First Ever Heads or Tails

If you are looking for my Ultimate Blog Party post click here.

This is my first ever Heads or Tails post! I have seen it over at my friend Jen's blog and have so enjoyed her posts that I thought I would join in the fun. Head over to Skittles Place to see more and to add your own.

This weeks theme is green in honor of the upcoming St. Patrick's Day holiday. My first thought was how I am often green with envy! Right now I am struggling with envy in 2 areas. I have house envy and car envy. Is that a problem for anyone else?

I drive a 2001 minivan and it still works just fine, but when I see so many friends getting new cars its really hard to not want heated seats, too!

My house is the exact same. It was just built in 2004 and is plenty big for my family. The problem is that I play in a Bunko group that meets in different houses every month. I see things in each house, whether they are larger or smaller than mine, that I would love to have in my "next" house.

I know that we are not supposed to envy what others have, and I really have to work on that. I'm just being honest about my personal struggle here! Do you have a personal issue with things you envy? Come on, get it off your chest!

Monday, March 10, 2008

May I Introduce ...

Rick and Bubba!

I am so hoping this works because I want you to hear this. This is a clip of a radio show hear in Birmingham that I listen to every day. It is called the Rick and Bubba show and you can listen to it online weekday mornings from 6 - 10 am central time. It is also syndicated so it may be available in your area. If it's not, then it should be! This clip was when they had John Pinette in the studio a few years ago but it was the best one I could find on YouTube.

Both Rick's and Bubba's kids go to the same school with my girls and one of Rick's sons is in the same class with Abby this year. They are the nicest guys and so funny. They also have tons of CDs available on their website as well as 2 books and 2 DVDs from when they were on TV a few years ago.


Saturday, March 08, 2008

The Ultimate Blog Party- 2008


Fresh off the Bunko party, it's time for the Ultimate Blog Party! I'm glad you're here! If it's your first time here, please leave a comment so I can visit your blog or email to say thanks for coming by. If you're a long time reader, thanks for your faithfulness! Your comments keep me going. And lastly, if you are a lurker feel free to de-lurk. I promise I am harmless.

I started this blog in the summer of 2006, but I didn't really know what to do with it. This past fall I started reading some blogs that I really enjoyed so I am now committed to writing on a more consistent basis.

I am basically a SAHM but I work at my church a few hours a week in the child care area for extra money. I taught first grade for 3 years before I had kids and have been a homemaker for about 7 years. I have a master's degree in Early Childhood Education. I teach 1st grade Sunday School at my church so I feel like I am still putting my degree to good use.

I have been married for 10 1/2 years to my sweet hubby Alex. Here we are on our 10th anniversary trip to Hawaii last summer sharing a Diet Coke. I gotta tell you he's a keeper! He does some of the sweetest things for me and he is very helpful. I am a lucky girl!

I love children. I have 2 of them, both girls. My oldest is 7, Abby, and my youngest is almost 5, Alyssa. We are also a dog family. We have a 9 year old Yorkshire Terrier named Jonathan.
I am a Christian, so I try to be upbeat and a little inspirational when I can be. I wish I was better at lots of things, namely housekeeping and dressing fashionably, but we all have our downfalls and I'm not afraid to share mine! In my free time (who has any of that these days), I like to scrapbook, sew, and watch Days of Our Lives. You will often find a post or rant about the latest happening in the town of Salem!

One last thing about the ultimate blog party hosted at 5 minutes for mom. There are some wonderful prizes being given away this week so make sure you go visit their site as well after you leave your comment. Some of my favorites are:

1. Judy at Welcome to My World of Dreams is giving away a $25 gift certificate to
2. LTD Chix is giving away an adorable "Living the Dream Mom" Tshirt and there are 8 you can choose from
3. Angela at Mommy Bytes is giving away a $25 gift certificate to Target.

I also liked prizes 8, 9, 116, and 103. Make sure you go check them out!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Boy Do I Love Bunko!

Last night was the long awaited Bunko party and we had so much fun! I fully intended to take pictures of the actual Bunko part, but I was too busy actually playing. Sorry. If you've never played Bunko it is a dice game that is fast paced and loud but requires no skill. This month we added a theme which was chosen right here on my blog.

By popular vote, we all decided to have a pajama party! We ate pizza, popcorn, and ice cream. Then, in between rounds of dice rolling, came the karaoke. I have to say that was my personal favorite. Bunko is played at 3 tables and your goal is to get to table 1 and stay there. There is a prize for the most wins at table 1. So every time you lost at table 1, I decided your team of two people would sing a song. Here are the pictures:

Lesley and Denise were the first to lose at table 1. They chose to sing "Walking on Sunshine" by Katrina and the Waves. Denise (in the blue) was a little nervous at first but boy can she sing!
Sadly, my partner JoAnn and I were the next losers! Here we are singing Madonna's "Holiday." JoAnn was a much better singer than I was but what I lack in ability I make up for in enthusiasm! We made a second trip to the karaoke round later and sang "Sweet Dreams" by The Eurythmics.
Melanie and Kim came next and sang "Satisfaction" by The Rolling Stones. Melanie (in the red) was spending her anniversary with us! What a great friend. Thanks for sharing Reed!
Stacey sang next and she was playing without a partner because we were missing one person from our group tonight. There was a death in our community and one of our girls was at the visitation (We missed you Kim!). Stacey was brave, though, and sang "Rio" by Duran Duran brilliantly. Randy and Paula were impressed! (It's an American Idol game)
Our last singers were Jennifer and my sister Cyndi. They sang "Knocking on Heaven's Door" by Guns N Roses. Jennifer (in white) was a big fan of hair bands in high school. She even did the Axl dance and we were all impressed!

So, Pajama Party bunko was a success. You've all seen me in my jammies now! I wanna hear if any of you like to karaoke. What songs do you sing?

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

I Got a New Thing Going!

Have you ever wanted to try something new? Well I am trying to branch out a little bit, and have taken on my very first paid post! I started researching some of the sites out there and found Pay Per Post. I just started the registration process over the weekend and I must say it was relatively quick and easy. I have already begun looking around their site for opportunities. It is extremely user-friendly.

The thing that impressed me most about Pay Per Post is that they require you to keep at least one non-sponsored post before and after each paid post. I don't want my blog to become a walking advertisement. I want you guys to come here for the fun stories and know that I will now get to tell you about some really cool things every once in a while.

As a stay at home mom, I am really looking forward to getting paid for doing something I have really come to enjoy. I have been begging my husband for years to have laser correction surgery on my eyes. I think I'll take the money I make from this and start my own fund! That's only if my car doesn't go out ... then the money may get diverted to the car replacement fund!

What would you do with some extra money?

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Let the Bunko Preparations Begin

Abby is still home from school today with a little bit of fever, but I did get a little bit of my Bunko preparations done. I have bought all the prizes (there's a total of 5!) but I haven't finished wrapping them yet. I hope to have that done tonight.

I got a good bit of cleaning done today. I'm going to give a shameless shout-out to my favorite cleaning tool- the Swiffer Sweep and Vac. That saved the day for me today. My whole downstairs is hardwood floors and we seem to accumulate quite a few dust bunnies. I was chasing them all over the place with the broom until a friend suggested the Sweep and Vac. Now I can clean my downstairs in under 5 minutes!

The best part of the preparations so far has to be setting up for the karaoke. We bought Karaoke Revolution: American Idol Encore for the WII, so of course we had to take it for a test run:

Abby and I have danced all around the room singing Madonna's "Holiday". She really does have a fever. I didn't just keep her home to help me test this out!

Monday, March 03, 2008

Guess What I've Been Doing

You're probably remembering how sweet my hubby is and thinking that he took me on some romantic getaway for the past 3 days, right? That would certainly explain my absence, but what I was doing was nowhere near that sweet!

You may recall the 2nd round of illnesses that came through our house last week and left my sweet Abby with strep throat on Monday. Do you remember my quote? "At least it's not the flu!" Why don't we ever learn to not say things like that!!!!! My dear Abby kept coughing Wednesday and Thursday and we couldn't figure out why. By Friday when she woke up with a fever of 103 degrees, we were back off to the doctor who said she had .... THE FLU! How about that?

After spending $100 on medication for the whole family, we have spent the weekend pretty much holed up in the house. Hubby and I have traded off taking excursions out!

Here's the really bad part. I really need this child to get well and back to school so I can clean this house (and we all know how much I hate to clean!) because Bunko is going to be at my house on Thursday. BTW the theme is going to be a pajama party and the group was very excited about the vote. I will post pictures afterwards!