Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A Tale of Two Orchards and One Birthday

Asher turned 3 on Sunday. Yes, it's true, my last baby is officially 3 years old. Where the past 3 years have gone, I couldn't tell ya, but I do know that's it's been a great 3 years. After church and a visit to the church library to check out some movies for the week, we headed to Romeo to meet up with some family at Stoney Creek Cider Mill. My sister Dana, her husband Kurt and my niece Payton came. Best of all though, was that I got to spend some time with my aunt and cousins that I don't get to see nearly as often as I want to. My Aunt Janice, cousin Jeff, cousin Ashley, her daughter Brianna and Ashley's boyfriend Andy all came out for the day. Asher was sure to walk up to everyone several times and say "It's my birthday! I'm 3!", it was really cute. We got some donuts and cider (that was quite possibly the best cider I've ever had) and Asher opened his presents. When we were finished with all that, we headed up the road to Miller's Big Red to go to the petting zoo. The kids had a great time there and we even got hailed on. The weather was quited interesting that day, though overall great! We had such a great day spending time together and the kids were thoroughly enjoying themselves. We had some hot cider there and then Aunt Janice gave the kids a ride on one of the carts they have there. It was a fun ending to a fun day. Asher passed out in the car on the way back from the orchard and had a nice little nap before we got to my Mom and Dad's house where my sister Delyn and her fiance Jason were. We had dinner there with all of them and got to meet my Mom and Dad's new little dog (she's a miniature pinscher named Miya). Then we headed home to get the kids ready for bed and ready for the new week to start. It was such a great day. We got to spend time with a bunch of people we really love and Asher seemed to be satisfied with his birthday day experience. God is so good.

Here are some pictures from the day!

Asher enjoying a birthday donut at the orchard.

Brian holding Asher and Aunt Janice standing waiting for Asher to answer a question she asked him.

My adorable niece, Payton.

All the kids at the orchard.
(from bottom left to top left) Riley, Payton, Gavin, Brianna and Asher

My sweetheart, Riley.

My big sweetheart, Gavin.

My cutie patootie, Asher.

Riley and Gavin posing for a picture.

Riley as a cow.

Brianna helping Asher be a cow.

A picture I took of an emu at the petting zoo. I'm pretty sure National Geographic should hire me.

I love this picture I got of Asher.

Aunt Janice about to take the kids for a ride on the cart.

Off they go! Oh, and holla at your boy, Gavin. LOL

Friday, October 24, 2008

Basketball, Veggietales and a Cotton Candy Sky

This post is full of a variety of topics. I figured I might as well post them all together instead of in 3 separate blogs, so here we go...

Gavin and Riley started their basketball leagues last weekend. Since we only have one camera and their games were at two different schools at the same time, we only were able to get pictures of Riley. However, pictures of Gavin are to come. Anyway, Riley is hilarious when it comes to basketball. He wants to play, but he definitely doesn't see any need to be in the least bit aggressive when it comes to getting in there and getting the ball and taking a shot. He has a great time though, so that's all that really matters. Here are some pictures of him at his first game of the year.

Riley with his friend Joshua out on the court.

My little basketball cutie!

Riley has a very unique way of holding his left hand when he dribbles, which can be seen here. LOL

Asher has a new love...Veggietales. I decided to ask on Freecycle for any kind of Veggietales stuff anyone may have and a girl emailed me back and told me her daughter's room had been completely decorated in Veggietales and I was welcome to all of it! I went and picked it up on Wednesday and I decorated Asher's room with it yesterday. The kid was so blissfully happy, it was adorable. I should've taken pictures of all the stuff she gave me. There's a clock, picture frames, tons of these really cute figurines with sayings on them, a shoe organizer, etc. Anyway, here are some pictures of Asher posing on his bed with his new Veggietales pillows. You should have seen how mad he was when I told him they had to be washed before he could have them on his bed. Then, when I got them out of the dryer, he took them into his room. When I went in, his old pillow was thrown on the floor and the Veggietales ones were in it's place. It was so cute.

Laying down on his new Veggitales pillows.

Yay, I love Veggietales!

Big Asher smiles!

This is my newest trick I like to do on my bed.

Mom, what are you doing?!

And last but not least, I took some pictures of the sky this morning. The kids and I like to call the sky a "cotton candy sky" when it is pink and blue. It had changed to more pink and orange by the time I got home and was able to take a picture, but that's ok. It was just so pretty and deserved to be captured in photos...enjoy!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

A lesson in patience and love.

I woke up with a migraine today and I laid in bed and prayed for God to give me patience with the boys this morning and to help me not yell at them or get frustrated. I also prayed that God would help me change my behavior so the boys would know just how much I love them and not feel like I am disappointed or upset with them all the time.

I got them up and the morning went along. I never yelled once (although Riley was certainly testing my patience). I told the boys that I had a headache and wasn't feeling well, so while they were eating and getting ready, I was going to lay down on the bed. I was laying on my stomach with my face in the pillow when I felt someone get on the bed and pat my back lovingly a few times. When I looked to see who it was, it was Gavin. I told him thank you and he smiled and with sympathy said "Yup." and went off to finish getting ready. I laid there and cried tears of happiness because God helped me through the morning like I asked Him to and He gave me a sign through Gavin that the boys do know I love them. It was just really awesome. What an incredible way to start the day.

Sometimes if you just stop and pay attention to the little things, you'll discover something really profound. Asking the Lord to help me with some things that I've been struggling with and that I know I need to change and then seeing the way He worked in my family this morning just makes my trust in Him and my faith grow and grow.

Stop and be thankful for the little things.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Your Name

I don't think much needs to be said about this. The video isn't fancy, but it has the lyrics and that's all that really matters anyway. I hope it will be as powerful to you as it is to me.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Just some things on my mind...

Lately I'm feeling very unsupported by some of the people I have always viewed as my biggest supporters. I'm honestly not really even sure why these people are being this way, but it does hurt. I don't know if it's that they don't really understand the situation, if it makes them uncomfortable in some way, if they are looking at it from the wrong perspective...I guess there could be a million reasons, but I wish they would just talk to me about it. There's this awkward, unspoken discomfort that is going on as a result of the situation and it's really bothering me. When did people decide that it wasn't a good idea to talk about their feelings or ask questions to be sure they really understand the situation? I'm just feeling really upset and disappointed by it. I kind of feel like they should come to be about the situation, because I know that they will view me as "accusing them of something" if I approach them about it. It's just a yucky feeling situation and I wish I knew how to make it all ok. Maybe I can't. Maybe some people just have their minds made up and don't really care to hear the facts from me. I don't know.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Um, YIKES! (with updated info...still YIKES!)

So, Gavin has a roaring sinus infection and has been on antibiotics for a few days now and somehow he manages to have a coughing fit at school yesterday during recess (gee, do you think it's from running around on the playground even though I told him he should take it easy for a few days?), even though he hasn't had any coughing fits at home. Well, the school calls and I had to go pick him up. Of course I had just stepped out of the shower and my child who absolutely needs his full naps in order to function later in the day is doing what? guessed it, napping. So, I throw on some clothes, wake him up and head to the school looking like a drowned rat. Of course when he got home, he wasn't coughing at all and just wanted to play around, but I made him lay on the couch until we had to go pick Riley up from school. (I got him about an hour and 20 minutes before school was supposed to get out. Like he couldn't have made it that much longer?)

Fast forward to today. I tell him this morning that he needs to just chill out during recess, so he doesn't have another coughing attack and need to be sent home. He agrees that he probably didn't need to come home yesterday and says he'll take it easy. So, here I am with Asher in the tub (he woke up with his eyes crusted shut this morning to go along with the cold he's been battling), soaking in some Johnson's Soothing Vapor Bath and I'm going along doing laundry and little stuff around the my pajamas, when the phone rings. When I looked at the number, I immediately gave a little groan and then answered. Well, it was the school telling me that Gavin's teacher had personally accompanied him down to the office because he had gone into a coughing fit and almost thrown up. I told them I'd get my little one out of the tub and head up I did (much to Asher's dismay, since he was thoroughly enjoying his bath).

I got to the school and went in to get him and the principal and the secretaries were having a pretty intense discussion about something to do with some parents at the school doing something or other. I didn't really pay attention because I was irritated that I had to pick up my child again for this strange symptom that only seems to show up at school, and I was also feeling pretty stupid because I was sure they were thinking I was an idiot of a parent for sending my sick kid back to school when he had to be picked up early yesterday. I finished signing him out and we headed to the car and when we got in, I asked him why he went into a coughing fit this time and this is the response I got...

"Mom, I was fine, but then the school went on lockdown. We were locked in our classrooms and the principal was telling us to stay in the rooms and not open the doors for any reason and that the police were being called because there were two men in the school who weren't supposed to be there. Then, we heard footsteps in the hall and people talking and they were banging on our classroom door and we were really scared. I guess I got so scared that I panicked and it made me go into a coughing fit and I almost threw up. So, when we weren't on lockdown anymore, my teacher took me to the office and told me that she didn't care what I said, I needed to go home."

WHOA! Not at all what I was expecting to hear. From what I've been told (by Gavin, so it's not the most reliable source, but he was hearing the conversations between the principal and the secretaries while he was waiting in the office for me to get there), two guys who were actually involved in robbing one of our local banks last year, had come into the school because of some sort of dispute with an ex-wife who must have been there for some reason. They were allegedly both carrying knives. Um, that's some pretty scary stuff. It's not like we live in a scary place, but it just goes to show that stuff like that can happen anywhere.

On a good note, Gavin told me that he told the secretaries that he has been taking medicine for a couple days now and that he hasn't been coughing like this at home. I feel like that at least made me look like a little less of a bad parent. I had to give him a little "thank you" for that one.

Anyway, that's the excitement of my day so far and it's not even 10:30 in the morning!

I think I need a nap.

Turns out Gavin had some information a little messed up (big shocker there). The Days Inn got held up and the lady that worked there got a little roughed up, so the police called the schools and told them to go on lockdown. There was never anyone in the school or anything. Anyway though, it was still really scary for the kids and scary that so many ridiculous things keep happening around here lately. One of the banks here was held up 2 days ago and they caught those guys and they caught the guys who held up the hotel today too, but geesh. Apparently it's people from the city (Detroit area, in case you couldn't figure that out) that have been doing it. We had some people from the city come out and rob a couple of our banks last year too. Seriously, even if you live far away from there, you still have to deal with that stuff. How frustrating. At least no one has been seriously injured or anything in all of the madness. Just leaves everyone feeling a little less secure, and that's certainly no good.

And the award goes to...


I have been given the honor of recieving this award from my gorgeous and extremely awesome friend, Ellisa! Not only is she gorgeous and awesome, but she's an incredible mommy to her two handsome boys, a loving wife and just an all around wonderful person. Some pretty funny things happen in her world, so be sure to check out her blog.

So, here's the details of the award. The Oops Award was created and is to be given to bloggers who inspire others with their humor and their talents, also for contributing to the blogging world in whatever medium. When you receive this award it is considered a special honor.

Once you have received this award, you are to pass it on to others. The rules for passing this honor on:

1) Pick 5 blogs that you would like to award this honor to.
2) Each award has to have the name of the author and also a link to his or her blog to be visited by everyone.
3) Each award winner has to show the award and put the name and link to the blog that has given her or him the award itself.
4) Award-winner and the one who has given the prize have to show the link of “Oops” blog, so everyone will know the origin of this award.

So, most of the people whose blogs I follow, have already recieved the award and the others I read aren't usually the funny type. So...I'll have to get back to you on that list of 5.


Thursday, October 16, 2008

Creativity and Happiness

So yesterday, I just felt the urge to do something creative. I ended up crocheting a plastic bag holder that I hung inside my pantry, so now I have all my plastic bags in there, instead of all over the floor of the pantry. Yay, I did something creative and cleaned up a chronic mess that drives me crazy everytime I open the pantry door.
Life has just been even more great than usual, lately. I'm making some really good friends at church and my women's bible study brings me so much joy and I can feel myself growing closer to the Lord. Not only that, but I have so much to look forward to!
Saturday is Gavin and Riley's first basketball games. They are super excited and so are we. Of course this takes away our one day of the week to sleep in, but oh well, such is life I guess. Halloween is coming up in a few weeks, then it's our girls' shopping weekend in Birch Run and Frankenmuth, the the "Kick off the Holidays" party at my aunt and uncle's house, then Thanksgiving, then Christmas Tree day, then all the Christmas parties, then New Year's, then my mission trip to Mexico, then Easter, then my birthday, then Delyn's wedding, then Summer...the things to look forward to just go on and on. I am so blessed and I don't take that for granted for a single second. I'm in awe of how fortunate my family is. We are healthy (besides the nagging colds and sinus infections the kids seem to keep getting), we all love each other so incredibly much, we have fun together and my children are growing up to be wonderful, loving little people. What more could I possibly ask for?
So, I'm thinking about doing some other crafty, creative projects and trying some new things. I just feel inspired and motivated. Hopefully that feeling sticks around, because I'm going to need that inspiration and motivation to get through the holidays on such a tight budget. LOL

Thursday, October 9, 2008

I'm on a roll

baking Pictures, Images and Photos

So, I just finished baking 6 dozen ginger snaps and tomorrow I'm going to make several dozen snickerdoodles. I'm on a serious roll with this baking stuff and I'm loving it. Now, don't worry...Brian, the boys and I are not going to be ingesting all these cookies by ourselves. I'm going to take them camping with us this weekend where my parents, several of my aunts, uncles and cousins and some friends are going to be. So, there will be plenty of people to eat all my goodies. Brian is dying because he has only been able to sample the goods, due to him being in that Biggest Loser competition at work. I give him credit for having the willpower not to dive in and eat them. I told him I'd bake them all tomorrow while he wasn't home, if it would be easier for him, but he told me he could handle it and he has. So, one type of cookie down and one more to go. I'm just a baking fool lately and I'm thoroughly enjoying myself!


Wednesday, October 8, 2008


I just wanted to share something that has been with me this week. We sing this song at church sometimes and this past Saturday we actually sang it 3 times during the same service. There was just something so powerful about it. Now, our Saturday night service only has about 100 people or so on most nights, but the feeling of the Holy Spirit in that room was so strong. When I looked up the video for this song and watched it, it actually brought me to tears. I know how just our small group at church sings this song and others with so much passion and love, but to see such a huge group singing it and worshipping the Lord is truly touching. I can only imagine how much love and joy God feels when He hears His children singing out to Him. How awesome. Anyway, I hope you'll enjoy the song too and really think about the lyrics. He is stronger than anything else in our lives. There is no person, no circumstance, no illness...nothing, that is stronger than our God.

Let His name be lifted higher!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Yummy Treats

So, I've been on this baking kick lately. Now, if you know me, I'm definitely not a baker. I love to try new recipes for dinners and stuff like that, but I'm not much of a sweets eater and I certainly don't make them...usually. For some reason lately though, I've been loving baking! I've made the good ol' chocolate chip cookies a few times, but I've made those in the past. I had some bananas one day that were really ripe (I want to puke when bananas are really ripe, they taste disgusting) so I had this sudden urge to make banana bread. I've never made it before, so it was a total experiment, but I made it and it was dang good. I even had enough to freeze some! Mmmmm, a yummy piece of banana bread with butter and a cup of coffee. Now that's what I'm talking about! Then, on Friday, I surprised the kids and made up some sugar cookie dough and mixed half of it with cocoa powder to make chocolate sugar cookies. Then, we used Pooh, Piglet, Tigger and Eeyore cookie cutters and decorated the cookies with all sorts of different kinds of sprinkles and stuff. The kids thought that was the coolest and it was a fun time for us to spend together as a family too. Now, I have another treat I'm ready to make. I was going to make it today, but I know it's one of Brian's favorite things and he's starting the Biggest Loser competition at work, so I don't want to tempt him. I'm thinking I'll make them and take them to the campground with us this weekend for Halloween camping though. So what is it? Snickerdoodles! Mmmmmm, I can't wait to have the house smelling all cinnamony and yummy. I actually don't eat a whole lot of what I make (thank goodness, because I definitely can't afford to), but I love the way it makes the house smell and I love seeing the smiles and excitement on the kids' and Brian's faces when they eat the yummy treats I make. I'm thinking this winter is gonna be full of baked goods around our house. Such a fun new hobby!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

If only

As tons of other people right now, we are seriously running low in the money department. We've gone over our options a hundred times about how we can bring in more money. We have already begun being very frugal when it comes to groceries and that sort of thing and haven't eaten out or bought anything for enjoyment's sake for a while now. Me working isn't even an option because of the amount of money I would be able to make and the amount that would have to go out in daycare. Not to mention, in my eyes (and Brian's too, really) daycare is not even an option. So, I just keep thinking that there has to be something I can do to make money from home. You see people all the time who come up with easy little clever things that they start selling online or at craft shows or something and it eventually becomes a business for them. Why can't I seem to come up with some sort of clever item or service that I can offer from home to help bring money in? Now, don't get me wrong, Brian never makes me feel like I'm not contributing or anything like that and actually tells me he would much rather be in our current money situation than have me working and have Asher in daycare, but I still can't help but feel like I'm just not really helping out enough. Why should he have to work all day to bring in our only income and then stress about how far we can stretch it? He's really working at getting ready to start doing websites for local businesses and we're really hoping that will take off. In the meantime though, it sure would be nice to figure out some way that I could bring some extra money in. How cool would it be to find something you enjoy doing that is sort of like a hobby for you, but brings in an income too?! I guess I'll just have to keep racking my brain for some ideas, but in the meantime, if you know something I'm good at that could potentially earn me some money, could you clue me in? LOL