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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving


We left on Tuesday afternoon, and traveled to see my family in Georgia. I will have lots of pictures to share once I get home--- since I didn't bring the cord with me to be able to download pics. here ..... But, for now, it is 9:26 PM and my children are all sleeping soundly....my mom, her husband and my own hubs are watching TV......and I'm stopping in to say that today I'm thankful for:


**Being in my hometown for a few days. It is so comfortable being in this familiar place.....With people who love and accept me no matter what.


**Being with family for exactly the same reason....


**Getting to catch up with family and friends.


**Children's giggles.....my girls have had so, so much fun seeing cousins today and that will continue on through this weekend.


**B's sweet smile.


**Excellent food made by loving hands of family.


**My God who provides all.
Hope you all have had a blessed Thanksgiving Day!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Growing Pains

My oldest daughter, A, turned 7 back in October and it is causing me great growing pains. Did I ever mention that a while ago I was searching for 'age-appropriate chores' and was astounded to find at 7 - seven!! -- a little girl is considered a tween?


That was the beginning of it all. She's only 7 and she is considered a tween? Really?
This all got me to thinking about whether or not I am holding her back in some ways. Not allowing her to be 7 -- not allowing her to grow into her years.....Am I keeping her from doing things that are age appropriate under the guise of teaching her godliness?
I am trying to figure out where that line is. Learning what God desires is of utmost importance and will not be compromised. The question is -- am I pushing it too far?
I have always been very careful about what I've allowed my children to watch on t.v. or listen to on the radio or play with. There are things I've said no to that will not change. For example, Bra*tz......Anything with that name, IMO, is unacceptable -- not to mention the way they dress those dolls. I also do not allow Spon*ge B*ob -- and I really don't plan on changing my mind on that, either. To me, it's just unnecessary.
There are other things, however, that I've said no to in the past that I am having to rethink now.
Things like H*annah M*on*tana and Hi*gh School Mus*ical...... I don't think these shows are unacceptable as the things previously mentioned. But, I've always just felt that she was too young for them.....even though all the girls her age were into them.
She desperately wants to watch Han*nah Mon*tana on tv. She really wanted to see High Sc*hool Musical 3......
Right now my compromise has been this.....We will watch an episode of HM together and go from there.....
And I've told her that I was afraid she wouldn't understand HSM 3 without seeing the other two? (I don't know as I've not seen them) but maybe we can watch these together also.
What advice do you all have ? I am experiencing great growing pains. In some respects, I want to shelter her and keep her pure forever.........but I know that isn't realistic in this world.....
I just so want to bring her closer to her Heavenly Father and not add anything to her life that will separate her from him...This is one of my biggest prayers in life. What do ya'll think?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Come Out, Come Out Where Ever You Are!

I have this nifty account on statcounter.com where I can go and see who is checking out my blog. I average about 50 unique visitors a day. And while I have quite a few visitors, I average about 3 comments per day.



So, I'm calling you out.....Come out -- and let me know you stopped by. =) Tell me about yourself. I'd love to meet you all!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What To Give This Christmas!

Have you started your holiday shopping? It is only 35 days until Christmas. Yeah, it has snuck up on me, too this year.
Good News! You can get all of your Christmas gifts and help save lives at the same time.

Give the gift of life this Christmas!
Hands of Hope, a charity of Women Helping Women A World Away, is
announcing that their Holiday Gift Cards are available for purchase. These cards provide food,
income and water for impoverished women and children in Zambia, Uganda, and
Southern Sudan. They can be purchased on the Hands of Hope website
http://www.handsofhopeonline.org/ for $15.00, $30.00 and $50.00. Purchasing these cards will provide
goats, chickens or wells to help change lives. What could be a more meaningful gift for holiday
giving for family, friends, and customer appreciation?

Hands of Hope helps mobilize communities to respond to the needs of women and children
around the world. With an ever-expanding support base in the Chicago area, Hands of Hope
works to raise community awareness regarding poverty and HIV/AIDS in Africa and its relevance
globally. We are confident in the integrity of the channels we have established so that
contributions provide the highest possible impact for the most critical needs.


A Chicken Card will purchase a gift of twelve chicks and be given to an impoverished family in
Africa. As the flock multiplies, a struggling family will be given the hope to survive. Your gift will
help those in need for generations to come.

A Goat Card represents an actual goat being purchased for a needy family. Beyond providing
much needed milk, a few goats can quickly become a herd, providing sustenance and additional
income that can make the difference between whether a child goes to school or not.
A Well Card will go toward funding a well in the Western Province of Zambia. Statistics show that
nearly half of all people in developing countries suffer from health related problems caused by
unsafe water. In addition, African women and children spend several hours every day collecting
water which is often miles away and may or may not be contaminated. This well will provide clean and safe drinking water and will go a long way to ease a heavy burden for hundreds of village people who struggle daily with basic physical needs.
Go here now http://www.handsofhopeonline.org to do your shopping. What a wonderful way to shine God's light in this world. And since Christmas has snuck up on all of us, you can get your shopping done in one fell swoop!
I'm going over--won't you come,too?!!?

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Family Times

On Saturday, my family and I drove to a town nearby and did a little shopping, well browsing really as we didn't buy anything. After we had walked the streets and braved the wind and increasingly cooling weather long enough, we decided to get something to eat.

As we were sitting waiting on our Mexican food (YUM!) to come this was part of the conversation.

My middle daughter, M asked, "Are we in Asheville?"



My oldest daughter, A, quickly replied, "No, we are in some other "ville"!"


She was right. We were in another 'ville' town.....


In other news, since it has been almost 4 years since I've had a baby, I could be mistaken here. But, isn't two months a little early for B to be rolling over?




A couple of weeks ago, I put him down for some tummy time and he rolled to his back. Thinking it was an accident, I turned him back over. He did it again. So, I turned him back to his tummy again and he just got really mad at this mean mommy for making him lay on his belly. So, I figured he was just doing this because he doesn't like tummy time.

But, then last week - I put him down on his back to play with the "baby gym" over his head. And the next thing I knew -- he had rolled himself over onto his tummy!
Too early for this , right?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Shameless Self Promotion

These are the Thanksgiving Bows I have left. Email me at mindymc5@gmail.com if you are interested in them. They are all made of top quality grosgrain ribbon. It will be the price listed + shipping. Shipping will be as low as I can make it. Check em' out. They turned out really cute!


This first bow is a small bow. It is about 3 1/2 inches across. The base is made of 7/8 inch dark brown. The top bow is 5/8 inch orange with yellow dots . In the middle is a cute little Tom Turkey. The bow is attached to an alligator clip. Cost: 4.25






This next bow has a base bow that is 1.5 inch orange with yellow stitching around the edges. It has an orange bow on top of that that features the words: traditions, family, give thanks, blessings. On top of that is a dark brown 7/8 inch bow. And again, there is a cute Tom Turkey in the center. This is the largest bow at 5 inches across. It is attached to a French Clip.
Cost : 7.00





This next bow is 4 1/2 inches across. This one features 1.5 inch dark brown ribbon. It also has the small bow on top of that with thanksgiving words on it. On top of that, this bow has 5/8 inch orange with yellow polka dots and that adorable Tom Turkey.
It is attached to a French Clip. Cost: 6.50
This last one is what I call a streamer bow. It is especially popular with older girls who are "too big" for the other kind of bows but still like to have someone cute in their hair. These ribbons hang down straight on both sides and are attached to a pony holder with Tom Turkey on top.
Email me as soon as possible so I can get them out to you for your Thanksgiving Celebration. Don't have any girls to put bows in their hair? Please pass this info. on to a friend!
Also, if you are interested in custom made bows to match your daughters' outfits go here for more information. I'm also beginning to get orders for Christmas bows, so get your order in now so I get those bows out asap!
Have a great Monday everyone! Thanks for allowing my shamelessness! I gotta do Christmas shopping soon =)




Edited to add: The small bow (the first one listed) and the streamer bow have been taken. Get yours while they last =)

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Ain't Too Proud To Beg!


Since I shared the new passion the Lord has given me, a new thing is taking shape. This is a very small thing but a very important thing as well.


I was discussing this passion for family with the hubs and he suggested that maybe I do a short study during Advent (since the other one will begin in January). One thing that really bugs me is how Jesus part of Christmas. That seems to be difficult for the some families. So, I will be doing a short study- and by short I mean like 3 sessions. I will do this study at the same time we have children's choir on Wednesday nights, therefore, there will only be 3 Wednesday's after Thanksgiving to do it before Christmas Eve.


I will spend one evening discussing the legend of Santa Claus -- I think it is important that parent's know why we do Santa in the first place....


I will spend another evening discussing ways to keep Christ in Christmas with your children.

Last year, K and I began to really make this effort with our kids. We had always done an advent calendar- so that continued. Only, we added reading part of the Christmas story each evening along with the calendar. We also leave Baby Jesus hidden away from our Nativity scene until Christmas morning. Another thing we did last year was have a birthday cake for Jesus after lunch.
**Edited to add: I forgot to say that one other thing that we have begun with our kids is that they get 3 gifts from Santa because that is how many gifts Jesus got from the wisemen. It seems to be working well!**

These things all worked well and I plan to do all of these again.


Here are my questions for you:


** What do you do with your family to keep Christ in Christmas?


**In light of the fact that I only have 2 definite topics and I need a third, anyone have another topic you think would be a good one?



I desperately need your help and all of your friends help! Please leave me your idea's and send your friends here to leave their idea's. (Also - if anyone can be so kind as to tell me how to make this a "sticky note" at the top of my blog, please email me at mindymc5@gmail.com) I am begging.....=)


Thanks in advance for all your help!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Random Scenes

So, yesterday we ended up at the mall in a town about an hour away. My girls love to go to the mall -- they aren't shoppers yet. But, they do love getting to eat in the food court and getting to play in the play area. They did both. Here are a couple of things I'd like to share with you, my friends.

We did some shopping and I did get a GREAT pair of jeans for less than $20 at B*an*ana Re*public.....I KNOW - that is an awesome price.
What wasn't so awesome is the size I had to get. 2 sizes bigger than pre-baby. Did you get that? 2 sizes BIGGER!!!! Yes, I am feeling rather shallow today. I am having a hard time getting over it ,though, too.

Also, we were walking around the mall and I see what I think is going to become Santa's picture place. Then I get closer and realize that Santa and Mrs. Claus are already there. I CANNOT believe it. Pretty soon it will be that Santa arrives at the mall before Halloween.........I just can't believe it. However, there is an upside. Our girls did go talk to the Clauses, so we now have the beginnings of a Christmas list..... Speaking of Christmas -- come back tomorrow because I've a question to ask of all you wise women!

Lastly, my 3 year old just asked me this question:

L: "Mom, what are those things that boys have?"

M: "What things?" (Knowing what she is asking but trying to clarify as not to answer what I thought she was asking......she was asking!)

L: "Those things on their bottoms"

M: "A pe*nis"

L: " Oh, yeah. I'm going to tell my sisters."

My how having a baby brother has changed our conversations. I've always tried to be correct in the 'terms' I use with my girls but until 2 months ago - -this wasn't a normal topic of conversation.....My, how a boy changes things.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Today......Mathmatically


Veteran's Day = No school. (Don't forget to thank God for those who've been willing to go to war for our country --I'm thankful for my Pa. He went to the war and it just about killed him.)


No School = 3 bored girls at home + a baby


3 bored girls + a baby = 1 Mommy trying to figure out something to do this afternoon with the family.


1 Mommy trying to figure out something to do this afternoon with the family = 1 Caretaker of the Home letting go of the fact that this is housecleaning day around here......


I do think I can do it without twitching all day.........Having family time IS more important! So, I will leave the house this afternoon with eyes wide shut looking forward to making memories with my family.


Ya'll have a great Veteran's Day.

Monday, November 10, 2008

MPM and some cool T's!

I've not participated in MPM for a few weeks. Thought I would today.
Here's our menu for this week:



M: Shrimp and Grits

T: Chicken Artichoke Bake

W: Gathering Meal at church

T: Smoked Turkey Sandwiches, chips

F: Leftover's buffet

S: Salmon, brown rice, veggies

S: out to eat


For more menu plans, go to Laura's place.



Also, check out these adorable tshirts I found. Check out Zoe & Sprout.com.




I got this onesie for B to wear now.

I got this tshirt for him for when he gets a bit older. As I am sure with three big sisters, he is bound to think his name is No No at about the age of 2.






I am now on the lookout for great girl's tshirts. Funny but not crass. AND no sayings like "spoiled" or "brat". I'm not a fan of those. You all have any idea's for me?

Have a great Monday! I'm off to the grocery store.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Passionately Waiting


I have a bit of news to share with you. God is growing in me a passion for family.
A passion for husbands and wives and parents and children. A passion for the relationships involved and how said relationships should work in light of His Word.

A passion to help people have better marriages. A passion to help people be better parents. A passion for sharing the things He will teach me in our church and in our community. I believe that if we spend time helping people grow in being a mate and in being a parent, the next generation will be better than we are and some of the struggles that we have now will be alleviated. We need to know and live what the bible says about being a husband/wife and being a parent.

The passion is there and is growing. And I fully believe that my desire to go back to school and get my Master's in Marriage and Family Counseling was the beginning of this guiding from the Lord.

But, what that will look like exactly -- I am not sure. I am going to have to wait on HIM to show me. That is so hard. I know that waiting on Him and His timing are very important. So that is what I will do.

In the mean time, I will be looking into going back to school. That, in itself, is very scary. I have to take the GRE (algebra and analogies all over again?!!? -- It has been 10 years since I've had to do anything like that). And how will we pay for it? And when will I find time to even go to classes much less study with 4 children? One door that seems open at this point is that there is a university in the next town. A place to attend these classes? Maybe so.........

Another thing that I will be doing is come January, I will be leading a study at our church on Ginger Plowman's book, "Don't Make Me Count To Three". I don't feel qualified in the very least to lead a study on parenting -- I tend to lean toward the authoritarian style of parenting. I know this isn't God's plan for parenting. It will be the Holy Spirit leading through me because clearly I'm not qualified. Remember this?


So, I will do these things and wait patiently on the Lord for further instructions. The trouble is I can already hear the devil trying to convince me that I heard wrong. I can hear him saying "Are you sure that God wants you to do these things? Or is it just your idea?" and "God won't use you. You can't speak in complete sentences." And various and sundry other statements of that sort.


Can I ask a favor of ya'll? Will you pray for me?


Here are some specific requests:


*That I will not give in to Satan's taunting.


*That I will wait patiently - with a good attitude.


*That I will hear from the Lord clearly about where to go from here.


I'm here. Passionately waiting.


Thanks, Ya'll!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

For Tim and Ginger



Dear Uncle Tim,
Thought you'd be proud!
Dear Aunt Ginger,
Thought you might be interested to know this is the only sports team I can cheer for right now. Since I can't talk, I have to wear my support and Granddaddy wants me to support his team. So, if you want me to cheer for someone else, you might want to get me something in black and red. I'm just saying.........
Love, B

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Awesome

After church on Sunday a lady was talking to M about being in Kindergarten. M began to tell her a little about her class and said,



"You know what my class is called?"

The lady said, "What?"

M: "The Awesome Aquarium"

The lady asked, "Why are you called that?"

M: "Because we are awesome!"



That got me thinking about how wonderful it is that M sees herself as 'awesome'. And how as we get older, we stop seeing ourselves as such. Maybe it is in order to seem humble. Or maybe we aren't trying to be humble, maybe we actually believe that we aren't awesome. Maybe we've been beaten down by life (or people) and we really feel just rotten about ourselves. Or maybe you are like me and a lot of other Mom's I know and you just feel insignificant.

There are many a day, my friends, where I just feel invisible. Unnoticed. Taken for granted.
And to be frank, feeling like this wears on a girl after a while and you begin to feel pretty bad and not "awesome" at all.
The question is how do I handle it? Do I go and scream at my husband for taking me for granted? Or yell at the kids about how ungrateful they are? I'm ashamed to say that I've done all of those things.

If I take the time to see what God has to say about it, I'll find that in Psalms it says:

Psalm 139:14
I praise you because I am fearfully
and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
And even way back in Genesis when God created man and woman, he said that his work was VERY Good.
It is my prayer this day that I can get back to where M is. To the place where I know I am awesome. And it is a good thing because God says I'm awesome. He loves me so much. I want to be ok with being awesome because I have 4 little people who need to learn this principle. Tat no matter how much they mess up, they are still awesome in my eyes and in God's eyes. He loves them so much.
My prayer for you all is that you will know this day that no matter how you are feeling -- you are awesome. God loves you! And you should be ok with being awesome. That is my prayer for you and for me, too. And I will add this. May we all get back to where M is. Where we are happy to share with the world our awesomeness and we aren't shy about it, either!
Blessings this Wednesday, everyone!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Rock the Vote




M came home from school last week and told us that she learned about S*arah Pa*lin at school that day. After a little more questioning we found out that her friend W's dad (who is over the Poly Sci. dept. at a nearby university) had come to her class to teach them about elections. They had a mock election. M told us she voted for Jo*hn McCai*n because "he has a girl for a helper".




Then this past Friday, we went to W's house for a little Halloween fun. Her Dad informed me that while he didn't know who M voted for, he did know that it was a tie in the classroom. There were 10 votes for each candidate because Kyle was absent that day. He said he told W. to find out who Kyle would be voting for.




Since I think that most children vote for who their parents are voting for, I believe that this election is going to be very close. Not to mention the fact that the polls are discussed all day -- everyday- on TV.




Today's the Day. Get out and rock the vote! But don't forget to pray for God's wisdom first.




I know I will be praying a lot today as I clean house. Have a great Tuesday everybody.




Monday, November 3, 2008

All the Pumpkin Fun

We started our pumpkin carving last Monday (yes, a week ago). Since the girls really did no carving their Daddy did make them help clean out the inside. L cried at first.....I think she was a little afraid of it.
Here are their finished pumpkins. The girls each picked their own design.

Then A. carved her pumpkin on Tuesday afternoon. Lest anyone think we actually gave our 7 year old a knife and said go at it, know she didn't really carve it herself. That was Dad's job. Then on Wednesday night, we had our Trunk or Treat at church. Being that we are new at this church I didn't know exactly what to expect. But it was big time! There were games and a bouncy house and a hay ride and then we had trunk or treat. Ya'll. These folks really get into decorating their cars. Check these out!


This was a puppet inside a theater in the back of a truck. There was a boy handing out candy beside it.

And I know you can't tell really well in this picture, but this was a huge spider on top of this truck. And lots of green spider webs around it.







There was this truck where the kids went 'fishing' for their candy.

These were only a few of many decorated vehicles. The girls got tons of candy.



On Friday I decided I needed to carve my pumpkin. K took pictures because he didn't think I would finish it.

I proved him wrong!








On Friday evening, were invited to a friends home where we had some snacks and the girls went on a "haunted trail walk". Made especially for little kids so as not to be too scary. There were about 4 other families there and we all went trick or treating in our downtown area.

There was even live music. And I had to share this 'costume' with you all. One of the mom's is due to have her third baby in about two weeks. This was her costume. Cute, huh?!!?












And here were our little trick or treaters!


We had Peter Pan and Wendy.











And Ariel in her pink dress.And B was lucky enough to have two costumes.
The grandparents got him this skeleton costume and we had the blue monster costume for him. So he wore one to each event.







Ya'll have a great Monday. I'm off to do laundry,go to a school conference, and to get groceries all before noon. See ya tomorrow!