Friday, November 06, 2009

Christmas!!!

Christmas is just around the corner!!! I am getting geared up! I am planning my gift list. I am thinking about the candy I will make! I am thinking about decorations! Anna's Christmas tree is already up! We will put a real one in our living room so that will wait until after Thanksgiving. Probably the weekend after cause we have a Christmas show we are going to Saturday after Thanksgiving! I am excited!!! I love the holidays! I might even try to talk someone into shopping on Black Friday!!! I haven't looked at the sales pages although they are stacking up in my inbox!

What is something special you do at Christmas time? Do you have any fun or special traditions you do with your family?

Rest in Peace Papa George

A week ago today my Grandfather passed away. He had been pretty sick for a while. His problems included a severe cancer right behind his airway. He was really struggling and now he doesn't have to struggle any more. He is at peace! I am relieved for him but I hate it for my Grandma! They were married for 40 years and now she is alone. I can't even imagine what she is experiencing. We had a lovely service done by my little cousin. I say little because he is 11 years younger than me but he is a good bit taller than I am. Anyway, that is beside the point. He did our service and I don't know that I have ever been to a better one. He is an amazing young man! The one thing that sticks out in my mind about the service is when he said: He thinks when we are called up, Jesus won't be the first person we will see. He thinks we will be reunited with all of the loved ones we have lost and then we will ALL go worship at the feet of Jesus. That is a beautiful sentiment to me. I like the idea that when I am called up I will get to see Papa George and my brother right away. I am going to hold onto that and I hope that my Grandma will too.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

M.O.P.S.

I am looking into starting a MOPS group at my church. If you or someone you know is involved with a Mothers Of Pre Schoolers group I would love to talk to you. Can you leave me a message?

Monday, September 14, 2009

I'm sorry can you repeat that!?!

I have been a Christian since I was 15 years old. My parents started taking me to church when I was in 10th grade and I loved it instantly. The people were great and having a higher purpose was wonderful. For some reason when you are 15 it is easy to hear God but then as you grow older it is like you turn the volume down (or at least for me!) I am now 36 years old and finally I feel like I can hear God and this time I am really listening! I don't know what all He has in store for me but I am trusting in Him to show me the way. This week I had 3 visitors in my Sunday School class and I was so excited! It felt kinda like a reward for stepping up and doing what the Lord asked of me.

I am excited to finally feel like I am listening and acting on what He wants me to do. I feel like I am finally getting onto the right road after being lost and confused forever! It is almost like being on vacation, really! lol I have been trying to take Jesus where I wanted to go and lets just say He isn't someone that you can easily push along! Now that I am letting Him drive, I can kick back, take in the scenery, and let Him show me the way. Saying all of that doesn't mean that I am not doing anything. I think I am doing more now than I have in a long time but when He is driving it seems so much easier. I am drawing closer to Him through reading His word more often (I can't say daily yet) and praying more often and listening for Him. Sometimes He just wants us to be still and listen. I didn't think about that very much until recently (no wonder I couldn't hear him!) When is the last time you were still? I know it is hard to find time but sometimes you have to make the time and it is SO WORTH IT!!!

Friday, September 04, 2009

Day 5

She cried and cried! All the way to school she begged me to take her home. I knew if I did take her home that battle would have been lost but the urge to turn that car around was SO strong! I continued down the road and we made it to school. She really started carrying on when we got there and I did our normal routine. I helped her get her stuff up and gave her a hug. I told her I had to go and I practically ran out the door cause the tears were coming down. It breaks my heart that this is so hard on her. I keep asking myself if it is something that I have done that made her need me so much. There is only one other little boy in the class having the same problem that Anna is having. So what causes this problem? What makes one child cry when they are going to school and another delight in it? The only thing that I can see that I have done that would have created this is the fact that she has been with me pretty much all the time. I mean I leave her with a friend every now and again and she goes to church to her class with no problem. But she has never been in daycare and I don't think I would change that just to have her go to school without crying. As a mom I know it is natural to question how we raise our children. To constantly wonder if we are ruining our childs life. Are they going to need therapy because of me? Seriously, all I know is that I can do the best I can and leave the rest up to God. I was listening to this radio program one day and it said something like: You can do better than your parents because you can learn from their mistakes, you can do the best as you see it but then you also have to pray regularly for God to make up for your mistakes to fill in the gaps so to speak. There is NO SUCH THING AS A PERFECT PARENT except for Our Father God! Don't try to be and don't claim to be but lean on Him to heal you and your child from your mistakes! I guess through my attentitiveness with Anna I haven't taught her the independance that she needs to get through this week but I know with my prayers she will make it through. I am going to hold onto that thought with both hands.

Psalm 18:30

30 As for God, his way is perfect;
the word of the LORD is flawless.
He is a shield
for all who take refuge in him.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

My life

We are on day 4 of this school thing. I am adjusting although I am not getting into a groove yet. Today we got there and Anna was not happy. She didn't want to stay and she was on the verge of tears. It broke my heart. Last night she tossed and turned and cried all through the night. I don't think she was awake for any of it. That broke my heart too. I like to think it is just because she is worn out! She seems to be making a few friends at school. She doesn't really talk much about what is going on but she seems happy when I pick her up.

Now about me! I am having to adjust to a quiet house. I think that is why I am not staying home so much. The house is TOO quiet! I feel like something is missing, ya know. I am going to have to come up with a game plan and work on that. Maybe next week I can figure it out.

Yesterday, I went to pick out our Small Group stuff! We are going to do The Love Dare. I am super excited about it. I haven't talked about it much on here but Chris and I have gone through a very rough patch. We are now on the way to happier days but I am hoping that this group can help make it even better! Every marriage has ups and downs! If we didn't have the downs we wouldn't appreciate the ups! The Love Dare teaches us how to reconnect and think about the other person, how to treat the other person etc. It is all Bible based and it is supposed to be wonderful for all couples. Whether, you are in good times or bad because you never know when the bad might hit you. It is better to be prepared and now how to deal with things. If you are interested you can watch the movie Fireproof! It has that cutie pie Kirk Cameron (my how I loved him when I was growing up, lol) in it.

I am in a season of change, as is Anna. We will come out on top because we are fighters and because we have the support of family, friends and most of all Our Jesus! I am trying to really rely on Him more! I am trying to listen to Him! I want to grow and learn and be the person that He intended.

2 Samuel 22:33

33 It is God who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect.

Tuesday, September 01, 2009

My baby is a school girl!



Yesterday my baby started in pre-k! I was worried about how it was going to go for her (and me lol.) Here is how it went:

Sunday night we were talking about it on and off and laying in bed I told her it was ok to be scared! I told her that I use to go to school and it is lots of fun! She asked me in a quiet little voice "were you scared"? I told her that yes I was scared but I made friends and started learning some neat stuff and I felt better. I told her that most people are scared when they do something new, you just have to make sure you don't let those feelings keep you from having fun and adjusting. She didn't really say anything and fell to sleep soon after that.

We woke up bright and early and I packed her lunch. I came to get her out of the bed and I told her how the morning would play out. We were going to drive her to school and help her put her things away and then we would have to leave. She started crying and saying she wanted to go with me. It broke my heart, of course! We have been reading a book called The Kissing Hand. So I reminded her of it and gave her a kissing hand (well 2 really) and kissing feet and kissing knees and a kissing belly! I told her I wanted to be sure she could find a kiss if she needed it. Well by that time she was giggling and smiling so we went and had breakfast and finished getting ready.

In the car, we went through again how proud we are of her and wonderful school was going to be for etc. Then her and her Daddy sang a song for the rest of the trip. We walked into the school and took her to her class. We helped her put her things up and I said OK baby we have to go now. She said ok, waved and said bye! I, of course, was trying to hold back the tears. I looked back through the window and Anna was waiting to find a chair and she was chewing on her little fingers. She was nervous and scared but she was such a big girl!!!

Today, she attempted to see if she could stay with me but she didn't try as hard as she did yesterday. She went into her class and didn't cry again! I couldn't be prouder. Maybe by the end of the week she will actually enjoy going (one can pray for it anyway!)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Summer Camp

I haven't done summer camp since I was a teenager. This year our church decided to do a Family Camp and I was excited. The closer it got to it the more I worried about how it would be at camp with a 4 year old. I worried so much that I toyed with the idea of backing out. However, the side of me that likes to have fun just couldn't do that. We left on Wednesday morning. It turned out to be mostly teenagers and their parents and people with smaller children. There were a hand full of adults without children or with older children. We had a great time.

We slept on bunk beds and watched the teenagers play pranks on each other. The preacher even got in on that! I had told my friend Denise about pranks we did like underwear up the flag pole and vaseline on the toilet seats. Thursday afternoon Denise had to GO so she went in the girls dorm. (We had moved out to a neutral dorm so we wouldn't be caught in the cross fire of the "war".) She went in and well lets just say she discovered that vaseline is still used as a prank at camp lol. She had never been to camp before and now she has been crissened, lol.

We had a talent show, I got to be the hostess. That was a ton of fun. If you are my friend on facebook you can see a few clips! We had devotionals together, time to bond with adults while the teenagers entertained the little ones. We had a camp fire and s'mores. The teenagers had a shaving cream fight and we had 2 teams that had a eating challenge. You know the kind where you get the nastiest stuff you can find and see who can eat it the fastest lol.

The best things about camp was that we made stronger friendships, we drew closer to our God, we started understanding each other a little more. If you ever have a chance to do Family Camp be the first one to sign up!!! It is well worth it!










Friday, July 31, 2009

Happy Birthday My Darling Anna

4 years ago you came into this world kicking and screaming. You were a little tiny thing but you knew how to make your presence known. 4 years later you are still a little on the small side but when you decide to make your presence known there is no ignoring you. You are a delight to have around (most of the time lol). There is a quote out there that says something like Don't have children until you are prepared to have your heart walking around outside of your chest. That isn't it exactly but you get what I am saying. It is so true - I look at you and I know that you are my heart. You are the best of me and your Daddy. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me. You are a blessing and I try not to take you for granted even on the days when you are driving me nuts.

Here is a summary of your birth story:

Your Daddy and I got pregnant after trying for a year. I had waited much longer for you than that but you were well worth the wait! We started having problems with the pregnancy when we were half way through. They noticed you were very small and there were times when you would get really still. I started seeing a specialist and having you monitored more often. They noticed you really weren't growing much and they decided you would need to come out early. After a false start they finally set the date (Your Great Grandma's birthday). They did a planned c-section so everything went as planned. Your Daddy and I assumed you would be going to Neonatal and I made him promise me no matter what he would stay with you and protect you. You came out and they checked you out and instead of going to Neonatal they sent you to the regular nursery. There you got your first bath screaming and carrying on the whole time. They put you under the baby warmer for a while and wouldn't bring you to me until I moved my toes. When they told me that is what I had to do to get you I started doing everything I could think of to get my toes to wiggle. They said I did that quicker than most Moms. That is how badly I wanted you in my arms. You are still a Mama's girl and I hope you will stay that way.

This next year is going to be full of changing and growing for both of us. You are going to start Pre-school in just a month. You are going to make new friends and learn so much. You are going to learn that Mommy isn't the only one that can fix things or make it better. You will learn that you can do so much more than you ever believed. In fact, you have already learned that in a few cases. You had a dance camp where you learned so much in one week. You even learned this week how to go down and touch the bottom of the 8 ft pool. You amaze me with your swimming skills! You will do great in school! You will adjust to not having Mommy around (hopefully very quickly). You will be a leader and a follower each in its on time. Maybe you will even learn to share toys and take turns.

Your future is bright! You can be and do anything!!! You are smart, funny and adventurous (at times) you will go far. I want to teach you to believe in yourself and no that you can depend on yourself if necessary. But I also want you to know that you are not alone! You will never be alone! Your Dad and I will always be here for you as will so many other people. But the best one to lean on is our God! He will never let you down and as long as you remember to rely on Him everything will be ok. I hope that you will find something to do with your life that makes you happy! I hope that one day you will find out how wonderful and rewarding it is to be a Mommy. I hope that you find a man that will treat you like a Princess or if you don't that you will treat yourself like a Princess! Because you are a Princess. You have been telling me lately that you are my Princess - I guess that means I am the Queen woo hoo.

I love you with all my heart! As the book says I love you to the moon and back!!! Happy Birthday my darling! I hope it is full of fun and laughter.

New Born
First Year
Second Year
Third Year
This Year

Sunday, July 26, 2009

One Proud Mama

Dance camp was last week and I was very worried about how it was going to play out. She did great (after the first day!) She even seemed to learn a lot in only a week. On Friday they did a "recital" for all the parents and I was so afraid that she wouldn't do anything with all of those parents watching her. She did a beautiful job. I was one proud mama!!! She is the one on the very end in black!!!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Worn Out

I am so tired of all the bickering going on in my house with the 2 extra girls in it. I would like to appeal to you more experienced moms of multiple children on how you deal with it. Please share your secrets cause seriously it is driving me crazy.

I believe this morning I am going to sit them down and lay down the law. If anyone is unwilling to share and arguing follows the item will be taken away for 30 minutes and will come back to the person that requested it (as long as they requested nicely). If it happens again with the same item it will go away for the rest of the day. If they can't sit together and complain they are to close or whatever everyone will have to move. How does that sound? I don't want to be an ogre but come on can't we get along?

The younger one tends to say if you don't do "whatever" I am not going to play with you again. The older one can't decide if she wants the younger ones to play with her or leave her alone. She sends mixed signals and then gets mad if the little ones stop wanting to play with her. Anna just doesn't know how to share and thinks if someone gets something that looks fun she should get it. She is finally picking up on the take turns thing but sometimes it is still hard.

Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated!!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Best Baby Back Ribs Ever



















Bar-B-Que Ribs
  1. Wash the ribs off
  2. Put oil on your hands and rub over the ribs
  3. Sprinkle salt, pepper, garlic and a little red pepper.
  4. wrap tight in foil and bake at 300 degrees for 3 hours (if you are doing one rack)
  5. Take out and open the top of the foil
  6. The meaty part of the rib should be on top. Pour evenly your barbecue sauce of choice all over the top. We used a vidalia onion sauce and it was wonderful!!!
  7. Cook for another 45 minutes or so (be sure not to burn your sauce)
This is how my mother-in-law told me to do it and I can tell you they are the best ribs ever!!!

For more great tips go HERE!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Here I am!

So I have been Absent for so long I feel like I should reintroduce myself! Hi, my name is Candace and I am about to turn 36 years old. I have a daughter that is almost 4 but really going on 16, ya know. Anyway, I have been staying at home with her for some time and loving every minute of it. She is going to be starting preschool in the fall and I am scared and nervous about that. I am hoping to start back to school then too. I am going to go to Cosmetology School if I can get everything done in time. I have to start working on that Monday. I really just wanted to do the nail technology classes but they don't offer that separate from the hair. Oh well it won't hurt to know how to do hair, right?

Anna and I have been spending the majority time of the summer in the pool. Anna has learned how to swim as good as most of the older kids. She can even swim to the bottom of the pool and how to do flips. I love watching her in the pool! Next week I get to watch her learn how to dance! She is going to a dance camp and I am praying that she will cooperate lol.

As of this past week we have started watching 2 other little girls, 6 & 8 years old. They are a lot of fun. (most of the time, lol) We are getting on great though and I am sure that the longer we are together the better it will get. Since we have been keeping them we go to the pool twice a day, lol. Anna loves having them to play with. They are teaching her how to pretend, share and how to play nicely with friends.

So that is where I am at, where are you?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Where I come from

I realized yesterday that everyone likes to know where they come from. Not just the people around them but how they acted and what they were like as a smaller child. Anna is already curious about her life as a baby. So this is for my Anna!

Where Anna came from:

Anna came from 2 parents that loved her so much before she was ever born. We were on pins and needles just waiting to make sure she would be ok because she was so very small. She wasn't growing very well in me and now I realize it was just because she was anxious to get out and see the world and be a HUGE part of it. As a baby she didn't sleep much. She would catch a few short naps but only if I were holding her. Or to be more accurate if I nursed her. She was a champion nurser lol. She started growing in leaps and bounds after she was out in the world. Her size never held her back though. She was trying to roll over at a young age and sitting up pretty young too. I would have to go back and check my notes to see exactly when. Anna never liked tv as a baby. Baby Einstein did absolutely NOTHING for her. Even now at almost 4 I am doing good to get her to watch 30 minutes for me to get something done without her under me lol. She loved to swing! Except she didn't like going front to back she preferred side to side. She wouldn't sleep in her crib until she was 4 months old at which point she started sleeping through the night! At 7 months we went on a fabulous vacation to Holden Beach where she decided that sleeping through the night was totally over rated! Her first belly laugh was 4.5 months old. We were watching White Christmas, a movie that I loved and will cherish even more now!

As Anna has been growing she has gone through a number of phases. Some that I would like to forget and others that I will hold on to too get me through the tough ones ;) She went through the NO phase! Everything was NO even if she really meant yes. She is still going through a phase where she hits. If she gets mad or is not getting her way she strikes out. She is a Drama Queen and has been since she was a baby. She started posing for pictures when she was old enough to realize what a camera was. She turns everything into a HUGE deal. Which can be good if it is something like a picnic and a movie. Not so great if she bumps her toe and her world crumbles!

I expected most of these things though cause she is so much like me. She picks through her food to see if there is something gross in there. She laughs with her whole body and soul. She feels other peoples pain so deeply that she will cry for them. She loves to snuggle but also likes to have her space. She also has a lot of her Daddy in her. She likes to scare people and play tricks on them. She moves very slow (sometimes) making sure everything is JUST so! She likes a variety of different foods. She doesn't like to be touched after 10:00 PM lol. She loves to put things together and take things apart. She has to have things done a certain way and she hates it if you change it up on her. For example, we have assigned seating at the table, we have to go a certain way into the grocery store etc.

She is a quirky little kid and I love discovering these things about her. She loves to help clean house and do laundry! Maybe we can keep her that way lol. Her favorite chore is wiping tables and stuff. Anything with spray!!! She loves her babies and takes very good care of them. She will be a great Mommy one day! She feeds them, changes there diaper, rocks them and plays with them. She even selects a lucky one to ride in the car with us where ever we are going. She hates to leave them in when we go to the store but I make her leave it. I am afraid if we left it somewhere the world would come to an end as we know it. Remember DRAMA QUEEN!!!

She loves swimming and is a little fish. She is doing extraordinary with it, she can swim the width of the pool without help, do flips under the water and swim down to touch the bottom of the pool with her fingertips. She loves to have picnics in the living room and watch a movie. She loves sitting out in our driveway and waving at people as they go by. I don't think she realizes how much joy she brings to the people driving by. I can see most of them looking tired after a long day and then they see her waving with such a cute smile and their faces brighten up and most of them wave back or honk the horn. She loves to ride her bike and climb things. She loves to play with her very good friends. She has so many now I never imagined she would have so many friends. She tends to get shy with new people but she is breaking away from that a little at the time. She loves getting her nails done and her hair too. She enjoys getting in the car and going as long as we don't have to drive to long. She likes to pretend like she is driving the car. Her favorite thing to do at the park is swing! She would swing for hours if you would stand there and push her lol. She is starting to learn how to do it herself but knows it is much easier if someone does it for her lol.

She doesn't like big crowds, she doesn't like putting away her toys (I think it is because she is thinking I am just going to get them back out later), she doesn't like bug bites, she doesn't like sitting still for to long, she doesn't like having to get a bath until she gets in (she loves it after she gets in), she doesn't like missing things, she doesn't like not being able to do something one of her friends can do.

She loves pretty much all fruits, she loves chips, plain or with salsa and sour cream or dips. she loves hot stuff, she loves sweets, she loves granola bars but her favorite snack is goldfish! Her favorite meal is chicken and pasta or either ham. She doesn't like broccoli, she doesn't like raisins, she doesn't like well I can't think of anything else at the moment.

Right now we are facing the 3-4 year old attitude. Sometimes I am trying so hard not to laugh when she gets it going. She just gets this look on her face and some of the things that come out of her mouth. Other times I just want to hang her up by her toe nails lol.

She is a delightful little girl and I am so blessed that God brought her to my life.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Timy Talk Tuesday


I wish I had been writing stuff down. The stuff that comes out of Anna's mouth is not stuff I would ever dream up. Here are a few things that have just stuck with me.

* Last night we were flipping through the channels on tv and I said "TV stinks!" Next thing I know she is up smelling the tv lol. She turned to me and said "Which TV, Mom?"

* One Wednesday night on the way to church we saw the prettiest rainbow. We were talking about what it means etc. and she said "Mom, do you think rainbows get wet or do they stay dry?" She stumped me! Anyone know the answer to that one?

* Anna is all about swimming these days. We typically go to our community pool that has a specific opening and closing time. This past weekend we went to my aunt's house. They have a pool at there house. Saturday night we had a party and everyone got out of the pool for a while during the party. She looked out there at dusk and said "Hey Mama, is the pool closing now?" She was totally excited when she found out that it wasn't, that it NEVER closed!!!

For more Tiny Talk go HERE!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Mother's Day Video

This is the video I created for church! Hope everyone had a great Mother's Day!!!
video

Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Dancing with Anna!

Being a Mom is so confusing sometimes. It is like a confusing dance (I have never been a good dancer!) that is ever changing! They are growing and changing and we are growing and changing as parents as well. This means that things will be different from one day to the next.

Anna and I have been feeling growing pains lately. That struggle for power. The I am a big girl and I want to do it myself. I try to give where I can and stand firm where I need too. On the flip side of that sometimes I seem to push her to hard. But then I wonder if it is to hard or if it is necessary. See a confusing dance! Y'all tell me I am not alone on the dance floor! Tell me that we will survive and make it to the next step!

Monday, May 04, 2009

Prayer and Angels

Last Wednesday night our preacher talked about prayer. How there is a right spirit that you need to pray with to have God really hear you. I mean we could pray all day long for a Jaguar and well that is not going to be at the top of God's priority list ya know. It reminded me of the time that Chris and I spent at Ridgecrest. Our transportation was Chris's OLD truck. It was a great truck but well it was old. One day we left Ridgecrest to go to Ashville to eat or something and we had a problem. I can't remember if we prayed together but I know I was praying. Praying that 1) we could make it somewhere 2) we could find someone that could help us! We barely got out of Ridgecrest and we coasted up to a couple of old guys hanging out selling veggies and fruits. They checked out the truck and told us just what we needed and then went to get it for us. They said they were out there ALL the time but Chris and I never saw them before or after! They were a Godsend. An answer to our prayers! They didn't even let us pay them for the part and we were pretty broke so that was another Godsend. Our very own angels!!!

Prayers are answered every day. Yes, no or not now those are the answers that we get. We don't always have such a wonderful story to tell. They may be answered by a friend calling when we need someone or a positive pregnancy test that you have been waiting so anxiously for or by a new job that you needed or wanted desperately. Whatever it is you can be sure that God had His hand in it. Sometimes I like to do things with/for Anna and make her think that she has done it all by herself I like to think God is the same way. He decides when we are ready for something and then He will make it happen and often times we forget to thank Him because we think we did it ourselves!

Thank you God for always being in charge of my world! Thank you for all of the blessings you bestow on me! Thank you for loving me enough to forgive me of ALL my sins and helping me repair my life!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Whirlwind weekend!

What a great weekend! Friday night I lounged around and watched Ghost Whisperer all by myself. No interruptions, no chatting through it. I really didn't know how to handle it but I soaked it up lol. Chris entertained Anna to give me a break since I have this cold. He was wonderful!!!

Saturday I got some more down time while Anna helped her Daddy do some yard work in the morning. I took a nice LONG hot shower! Which is pretty much unheard of for me lol. After lunch we got ready and headed downtown to the Sidewalk Chalk Festival. It was great fun. We have some super talented people out there. My idea of drawing with chalk is a smiley face lol. Anna was just excited to watch all the people and the dogs! She also got her face painted and did a craft and played some games! She had a great time and so did we. After a while we decided we were hot and we walked down to a pizza place that is So yummy but we don't go often because it is downtown. We enjoyed a leisure dinner because we knew that we didn't want to get back to the park to fast. Chris got a glimpse of the future while we were there. It seemed like girls were coming out of the wood work. There was a girl scout troop there and a teenager having a party. There fear of the future was palpable coming off Chris lol. The chattering and giggling, the silliness and LOUDNESS shook him to the core lol. It excited me and brought back so many memories! He said something about her not being that silly and I had to remind him how silly I was. I think he blocked it out or either I hid it from him because I wanted to impress him lol. Anyway, as soon as Chris could make his escape we were out of there and we walked back to the park. We settled in on a blanket we took and a chair for Chris and Anna's stroller and proceeded to wait for a movie to start. I know isn't that crazy a movie in the park! Anna was all excited - "We are watching a movie OUTSIDE!" She anxiously waited for it to start not running around like the other ones but focusing intently on the screen trying to will the movie to start! We got there kinda early but we got perfect seats. We were towards the front right beside the speakers. I was worried it would be to loud but it was perfect! Finding Nemo was the feature film and Anna loves that movie! She enjoyed the whole movie and ate her left over pizza during it so she even got to have a picnic lol.

Sunday of course is our church day! I made a hard decision last week. I decided I would step down from choir for a while. I am moving Anna up to children's church and out of the nursery. They typically do that at 4 but I need to do something to help prepare Anna for preschool and I was thinking this would be a good place to start. It hurts me because I love to sing and be a part of the worship like that but as always Anna comes first! The way our church does it is the kids get to stay through the first half of the service which is the music part and then they go to children's church afterwards while we have a sermon. Anna is so funny about who she will sit with I didn't want to just throw her out there with someone. Therefore, until she is a little more comfortable with this change I will sit with her. Honestly though after this Sunday I don't think it will be to long. I think she will sit with her friend McKenzie even if it is with an adult she doesn't know well. It was a relief when she held McKenzie's hand (McKenzie is 6 yrs old) and ran out of the church giggling and excited! We all took a nap that afternoon and it was kind of nice not having to worry about waking her up to get to choir practice! I always hated that part cause on Sunday she goes down for nap so late that it is usually a challenge letting her get enough sleep and still make it to choir on time.

So that was our very full weekend. Honestly, though this weekend really did make me appreciate where I live. To have so much to do that is family oriented is a great thing!

Sacrifices of a Daddy


My husband is a great Daddy. I know that he feels inadequate (as many of us parents do) but he is so wrong! When Anna was about 18 months old we would stand in the window to wave him off to work. She would put on a huge smile and give her queenly wave. I know in so many ways that was bitter sweet. Sweet because his baby loved him enough to wave him off with a smile interrupting whatever she was doing at the moment just for him. Bitter because yet again he was leaving her. Today Anna cries if her Daddy is gone when she wakes up. She no longer waves him off but she does run to him and snuggle up until the very last second. I know that he hates leaving her. He is doing a great thing for her though. He is showing her how much he loves her by providing for her. He is showing her how to be dependable and consistent. He is showing her that it is important to be there for others and to stand by your commitments.

A fathers love is so important to a little girl. He is showing her how a man should treat a woman. He is showing her that she is special and deserves to be treated like a princess! He is also showing her that life isn't all about responsibilities and worries it is also about fun and laughter. My husband is teaching Anna all of these things and doesn't even realize it! He does these things effortlessly and still thinks himself inadequate.

He is teaching her of our Fathers love! She knows already that God loves her. She knows that Jesus loves her. She loves to talk about it and read her Bible! She will have a wonderful understanding of why we call God our Father as she grows up because she will be able to see that the love God has for each and every one of us is very much like the love a father feels for his child. It is an unconditional love, a love that grows as the relationship grows, a love that only wants to see good things, better things for the child, a love that disciplines not because it is fun but because you don't want the child to hurt or suffer not just now but always, it is a love that can never be destroyed! Nothing we do can take away a Fathers love or our Gods love! Hold on to that in all you do. Now that you will always have someone on your side!!!

Chris you should know that Anna adores you. She thinks you hung the moon just for her! Thank you for all that you teach our daughter and all that you do for her (and me)!

Anna you should know that your Daddy adores you. That all he does for you is out of love not duty! That you are his world!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Video Friday

video

TGIF

Its Friday and we have a fun weekend planned! Tonight I think Anna and her Daddy are going to have a date so that I can get some much needed rest to kick my cold. Tomorrow we are going to be busy busy busy. I will tell you all about it Monday! And of course Sunday is filled with church and good friends!

Hope you all have a great weekend!!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Girly Hair

I have found some great websites for little girls hair. I copied one style for Easter and it was really easy and I think pretty cute. I took part of one today and did it for church. It was a complicated hairstyle and I didn't think I could do it all but I love the little corkscrew look. So I did a half tail, as my daughter calls it, and twisted the hair for the corkscrew look. You have to split the hair in half twist both pieces in one direction then twist them together in the other direction. After doing that she decided she didn't like it and wanted a tail (ponytail) so I pulled all of her hair up together making one big tail with the twisted parts on top. I think it looks adorable.

This was my first time doing the corkscrews and they were pretty easy. I did it with the hair damp and I did redo it once so that I could make it a little tighter.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Spring cleaning the yard!

My yard is a huge challenge for me! No, it isn't huge but it seems to get out of control rather often. If it isn't the flower bed in the front with more weeds than flowers it is the back yard with more weeds than grass. Anna and I worked out there several hours this morning. Working with my stacks of pine straw and cutting the grass, sweeping off the porch and cleaning Anna's outside toys. We worked so hard that we earned a picnic out there. Anna loves to be outside and being able to do all of this was wonderful for her. We even soaked up some sun after our picnic. I love hanging out with Anna. She makes everything so much more fun.

Hope you all can have a great friday! Enjoy some time in the great out doors with someone that makes you smile!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Fullfillment

I have writers block!!!

My life has been full. Full of fun, full of learning, full of things to do, full of love, just plain old full! I haven't really been blogging much besides pictures because I have been to busy living my life. In one way I have really missed blogging. I have great ideas for a post and then I get busy again and poof it is gone. So instead of a lovely witty post you get my day!

Anna and I went to the park this morning. We had a great time with friends. Anna played hard and is now napping hard. YAY! She learned today that throwing rocks isn't a good idea! I don't know why she and her little friend thought it would be fun to throw rocks at each other. Anna (who has a great throw) threw one right into her friends head. Luckily it was a little rock and it hurt but it didn't bust her head or anything. My daughter looked so pleased with herself. I think she was thinking "yeah, I can really throw good!" I had to explain that throwing rocks was a very bad idea. So they went and started jumping up and down trying to tear leaves out of one of the tall trees! They also pushed each other on the swings, rode bikes together (even sharing each others) and played together beautifully!

After nap I hope to go out and get some work done in the back yard cause let me tell you it is NOT pretty!!! My weeds are growing to high and I still have stacks of pine straw where I raked them up and never took them out. Maybe I will post pictures if I can get enough done. I might even go get started on it while Anna finishes her nap. That is if I can get out the door without waking her up. She seems to have a radar that tells her when a door is opened while sleeping! It is crazy!

So I hope you are full and happy! See ya when I see ya! Probably tomorrow but maybe Monday!!!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Happy Belated Birthday Hubby


I didn't get this posted on his birthday but I am sure he won't mind. Chris and I have had a bumpy time of it lately. I like to think we are on the downward slope of that and are getting back into good times. I know that every marriage has ups and downs and the downs make you appreciate the ups. So to help us remember the ups and remember why we married each other here are some of my good memories.

1) This one will sound funny to you all but Chris will get it. Our first date and the drive back to my house (my parents house) it took about 20 minutes to get there and we were in his moms car. It was so warm and cozy inside the car and it wasn't awkward like I thought it would be. He kept having to dim the headlights cause there was so much traffic and the click, click of it just ingrained that memory into my head for some reason. I will never forget the laughter after about the 10th click, click that filled the car. We were just both so light and happy to be together!

2) We went to high school together and we would have lunch together. He would always put his head down if there were a lot of people around but if it were just the two of us he would talk and/or listen. That is one of the great things about him - he is a great listener!!!

3) We also went to church together. One of the things he thought was so cute was how I would always run around barefooted! I think it drives him crazy now cause I still do it sometimes lol.

4) We worked at Ridgecrest the summer after we graduated high school. We had so much fun. We walked in the rain together (a lot) and it never seemed to bother us much as long as we were together.

5) We would go get ice cream a lot there too (I gained SO much weight there). But it was always fun hanging out and talking. We did that a lot, somewhere along the way we stopped. We are trying to get back to that. You don't realized how important something is for your relationship until it is gone.

6) College - We went to one year of college together before I had to drop out. We loved meeting up after class and eating by the fountain or going to Hopeland Gardens and having a picnic there. Togetherness is a beautiful thing!

7) I forgot our first Christmas - We started dating in Nov. 1990 and I didn't know what to ask for so I asked for a pink paper clip lol. How silly is that! He found one and presented it to me in a ring box lol. He also gave me a beautiful pink sweater and matching skirt. He has always had good taste. In clothes and girls te he he!

8) We dated all through his college days and grew closer and closer. Always hanging out after my work and his classes. We talked a lot and played a lot. He didn't mind my child like playfullness, although he was way more mature than me lol. He would smile and shake his head at my silly antics.

9) We got married after he got his degree. We moved away from home (which was a good thing for us). We were very happy. I was having a little health issue that wasn't great for us but we got through it. I started doing temp work and he was working as a manager trainee for an electrical supply place. I couldn't cook worth a hoot. One night I cooked baked chicken. I baked it so long that it was dry as a bone. My wonderful hubby sat there and ate it even though I was begging him not to cause it was AWFUL!!!

10) Chris lost his job shortly there after and that took a toll on our relationship. We worked through it and even went on a trip to Vegas. It was fun to walk around and look and see and just be together. No stress, no worries - just us!

11) We use to babysit 2 little girls (they aren't so little anymore). I loved watching Chris with them. He had so much fun with them and wasn't afraid to play with them. It made me sure that he was going to be a good Daddy! I was right too!!!

12) Anna joined our family! He was so good with her. He cherished her and was in awe of her. It was/is amazing to watch him with her. He was/is so gentle and loving. It reminds me of all the good in us!

13) Laughter is not uncommon in our house. I love that and it is becoming more common now that Chris has a new job. Not to mention Anna is getting pretty funny lol.

This is to be continued...

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter Picture Contest!


I am entering a new to me contest lol. I think it has been around for a while but I am just finding it. Go HERE if you want to check it out. It is called iHeartFaces!

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Works for me Wednesday

When Chris started back to school for his Masters degree I discovered pretty quickly if I wanted something grilled I would have to do it myself. He was swamped with work, school and homework. I received a few quick lessons and off I went. Now I love to grill and don't tell Chris but I think I do better than him lol.


My favorite marinade is McCormick's Tomato, Garlic & Basil Marinade. I put it on for about 30 minutes usually but sometimes I will do it the night before. I put my grill on medium, unless I am in a hurry or waiting on something else to cook that will take a while. I put the chicken on the grill and give it just a few minutes on one side and then flip. After the initial flip I don't pay attention to the time. Chris says five minutes one side and then flip and repeat. I however don't wear a watch and I don't pay attention to time lol. I think I do it more often than that. Probably every 3 minutes or so. I do that until they "look" done. I will then get a knife and cut into the largest one to see if it is done. I think your average piece of chicken takes 20 minutes. If it has the bone in it will take longer. Pork chops don't usually take as long and hamburgers depending on thickness can run from 20 - 30 minutes.


Monday night we decided to take our pieces of chicken and make chicken sandwiches. Way better than even Chick-fil-a!


Oh another little tip for ya. I got it from Rachael Ray. I have tried numerous ways to make the perfect hamburger. I heard if you put a hole in the middle it would cook more evenly. That didn't really work for me. I bought a hamburger patty maker thing - you know the press that you can use to make perfectly shaped burgers. Then Rachael Ray said to make the center thinner and the outside thicker. As it cooks it would puff up in the middle and it would cook perfectly. Guess what, it works!!! I was so excited to find the way to make a perfect hamburger. So now I use my press thingy to make sure they are big enough and then I thicken up the edges! Much better than my charcoal looking burgers lol.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Mommyhood

It is not always a fun job. It is not always an entertaining job. It is NEVER an easy job! But it is a rewarding job. Over the past few days/weeks I have seen Anna growing so much. The way she talks is changing and the way she acts with people well lets just say it is short of a miracle.

She is actually talking to some of the guys at church that before she would act all coy with. She has even given a few high fives! They have been working on that day for a very long time. She is learning proper english so her sentences don't sound as wacky as they did before. (Her studder is all gone too!) Best of all I have been successful at teaching her manners! That was very important to me and it is so rewarding to know that it has paid off! She says please and thank you like it is natural to her. Unless of course she is being shy and won't say anything! She says Ms. and Mr. not always right but she gets it in there most of the time. Today between her few little temper tantrums she has been such an amazing little girl. She came in and saw me doing the dishes and she brought her chair over and grabbed the silver ware and started putting them up! I mean, wow!!! I was just so impressed with that. So her reward was to do the Cha Cha Slide (her favorite dance ever lol). She loved it. Today we have also started doing a puzzle. It isn't a kids puzzle, it is a 550 piece puzzle. She is loving it. We have done the outer edges and now are working on the center. I thought I would share a picture with you guys!
Having a baby changes everything! Having a little girl (or boy) changes everything too. You learn things when they are a baby and then it goes out the window as they grow. Life is ever changing and I find that I am enjoying that! New challenges, new joys, new frustrations, new sorrows (like not being called Mommy any more!) Everything is new again!

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

Wordless Wednesday


Mommy's little helper!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Lemon Cake

My mother-in-laws birthday was Friday. They came down so that we could go to the ballet and I wanted to make a cake for my mil. She isn't much of a sweet person though so I thought I would try this cake out and let me just tell you it was delicious and the best part super easy to make.


Bake a lemon cake as directed on box

Let cool for 10 minutes and then remove from pans to cool completely

After they are cool make jello: 2 small boxes of lemon jello with 1 1/2 cups of milk mix thoroughly and poor onto the top of each cake. Do not let it set before putting it on the cake!
(I did one put the other on top of it and did it.)
Then you spread cool whip all over as the icing!

Anna added the sprinkles so she could have her flair on it!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Video Friday



Yia Yia and Pop this is for you! It is from Aug 07 so she was barely 2.

Memories!


Back in the day I would sing! I sing now but I like the comfort of singing in the choir. When I was a teen and a young adult I would actually do solos and duets! I loved our music director at church she was a very dear friend and I wish that I could find her again. I digress though, we had so much fun practicing music for my solos etc!


She had some different training techniques that I look back on and laugh. She would have me lay in the floor and sing down there. Apparently I didn't breathe from the diaphragm and laying on the floor pretty much makes you do that. She was instilling in me proper breathing and I think I still breathe correctly today! She wouldn't let me put my hands behind my back which I think is fairly normal but as a nervous young person that was hard. Keeping my hands in front or by my side was hard!


She kept trying to make me an alto because going high is sometimes a challenge for me although going low is too. She just thought that is were I should be. I hated being alto! I just couldn't get the hang of being low my voice just wanted to soar! She did discover that I tend to follow the people beside me so if she put altos on both sides I would usually go with them lol. Occasionally I would bust away from the crowd and go high again lol.


My solos included Love in Any Language and Thy Word. There were more but these were my favorites!

Do you like to sing? In front of people, alone or with a group? Do you like to sing high or low? What is your favorite song to sing?


To see more memories go HERE!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Spring cleaning the blog!

Y'all tell me what you think about my new look! I am loving it but I think I like Anna's even better!

Learning!

I have been a busy girl. I am learning to drive a stick shift ha. Isn't that great I am 35 years old and I am discovering that you never stop learning. I did learn how to drive a manual car ages ago but I was never very good at it. Now Chris is working about 40 minutes away from home and to save on gas he takes my car 2-3 days a week. That leaves me and Anna home with his truck. Anna and I don't like to stay home all day. There is just something in us that has to go even if it is just up the street for 10 minutes lol. So we have been taking his truck out for a spin here or there. I never wonder to far away from home and I make sure it is in the morning when there is not a lot of traffic. Anna loves it! She gets to sit in the front cause he has a single cab truck with no air bag. She also loves it when I do the whole whiplash thing lol. Which I tend to do from first to second gear for some reason. I am working on it and the more I drive it the better I get.

I have learned a few things through this process besides how to gear down when you slow down to turn or how to know when to change the gears. I have learned that driving an automatic is totally not driving lol. It is a leisure activity! Driving a stick is work! I can't even hardly have a conversation with Anna cause I am focusing on all the different aspects of driving! I have learned that I kinda like it lol. I never thought I would say that but I am enjoying the challenge of it. I like how Anna laughs at me or she points out all that she can see.

I think once I have this mastered I will have to find a new challenge! Something new to learn! Maybe I will learn how to do something totally crazy! Or maybe I will just learn something simple. Whatever it is I am glad to know that learning doesn't stop even after you are in your mid-30s. Even after or maybe especially after having a little one. I do realize that I learn things daily from Anna. Sometimes I do it so effortlessly that I don't even realize I am learning. Other times I am a very slow learner! Either that or she changes the rules on me a lot lol.

What have you learned lately? Something exciting or mundane? Something that makes you laugh or sigh with frustration?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Works for me Wednesday


Pictures!!! I have a 3.5 year old that has thousands of pictures documenting her life! My husband thinks there are to many and well maybe there are but when she is older and these days are gone I know that I will be glad to have them. Back in the day we didn't have digital cameras and I have very few of me and my hubby when we were dating or even early on in our marriage. I hate that cause I am a picture-a-holic!

Doctoring Pictures - The pictures I do have from back in the day are not great quality. They were just point and shoot kinda pictures and were not doctored in any way. Today there is no reason to have a picture that doesn't look good. First of all if it is on the digital camera delete it if it is NO good! If it has potential take it into Picasa and tweak it! This is a free program that you can use to brighten a picture or darken a picture. Crop it and a number of other things. Use this program so that your memories are clear in years down the road. Of course, you can use photoshop or some other expensive program that is better but Picasa is a great alternative for those of us that don't have it and can't get it!

Up Close and Personal - My next photo tip is to get down and close with your little one. Don't be afraid to get on your knees to get the camera on their level. Of course, sometimes when I do that Anna thinks she needs to get on her knees but hey lol. You don't always have to center your little one in the picture. Like if you are at the beach you can let the water take up one side and your little one be on the other side. You don't always want to have your pictures taken from the same angle. You need to switch it up a little. You can do one with them looking up or profile pictures or even from behind. Some of my favorite pictures are taken as Anna walks away. I can get her hair swaying or the little bounce in her step. I also like to get pictures of her little hands and feet. Not typically alone lol but I do let them stand as a sort of focal point. And most importantly don't be afraid to get close ups of their face! Their precious faces change so fast when they are little even if we can't see it now we will be able to tell when they are 8 the subtle little changes. Or catching a glimmer in their eye or a twitchy little smirk or whatever. You don't want to miss out just because you think you always need the full body or are afraid to zoom in.



Posed vs candid - I do a little bit of both posed shots and candid shots. I get a lot of candid shots when we are playing outside. Climbing her favorite tree or blowing bubbles (a great way to get giggles) sidewalk chalk or any number of activities. I get a few posed out there but they usually have that fake smile that we obviously learn to do at a young age. Every now and then I can get a good posed picture but usually I have to rely on my candid shots.



Take a lot of pictures! - Don't be afraid to snap away. When you are relying on candid pictures you have to take a lot of pictures to catch the perfect one. Snap away and just delete the ones you don't like. Or if you are like me you will keep a lot of the outtakes because they are funny or cute or a good way to remember a particular day! All of your pictures don't have to be perfect!
For more Works for me Wednesday go HERE!