Thursday, December 04, 2008

Not the Gall Bladder

Test results are back from my lovely gall bladder function test Wed morning. As much as I wanted it to be my gall bladder causing all of this...after all they could take it out and I can live without it and be pain free...well the test is showing that it is functioning at 90% so that is most likely not the cause of the pain. NOW WHAT??? I don't know. I go back to my surgeon net Wed. maybe he will have some other ideas. My chiropractor is wandering if it still might have something to do with my my guess is my next stop will be a Kidney Dr. I think I need to start some kind of third job so I can pay for all of the tests they are doing to get to the root of this pain. Not to mention that with every new test is another week or two of waiting. Why can't they do the tests all in one day and get me out of this pain instead of dragging it out?????? OK I am whining. I am sure I am suppose to be learning something from all this. Patience? Tolerating pain? Being Strong? Only time will tell I guess.

ON to some happy news! My family is participating in the New Hope For the Holidays Christmas program with our church this weekend. Tonight is the first performance. Chad is a tree, Nic a gingerbread man, Tyler a paige and a present(at seperate scenes), Brooke a candy cane and she is also singing a duet of "Where are you Christmas". I was suppose to be an angel...but I had to turn in my halo because was afraid I wouldnt be able to stand on the stage that long without falling over in pain. Plus, we have a retreat this weekend so it would have been difficult. The first performance is tonight so I will get to go take pictures and watch my family perform:) Should be a fun night!

We are having a scrapbook retreat this weekend at the studio. It should be fun because a few friends are coming too. My friend Heather from church is having a birthday on Sunday so going to have a little bday party for her. Us December babies have to stick together..nobody ever throws us parties cause they are to busy with I will live my birthday party that never happens through her!!;)

Well Brooke is begging to go to the mall before church so I am heading back for more shopping fun. Was already there once today...but I can't complain...Aeropostle was having a HUGE sale! Shirts and sweats for 1.99 and 2.99 and jeans for 5.99!!! WOOHOO!!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Thanksgiving and Shopping

What a great holiday! I can't upload my pictures though because my camera battery died! I only ended up getting a couple of pictures of Grandpa playing Rock Band. He has been so sick with his Parkinsons...we never expected him to make it to Thanksgiving a few weeks ago. Well if the camera battery had to die I am thankful that I got these couple of shots with grandpa playing the drums! I will get them uploaded just as soon as I remember to charge the battery...can you tell I am sick...what scrapper let's the camera battery die and then leaves it uncharged this long. This pain is seriously overwhelming me.

My little sister and her husband came in from Atlanta. All of the family was there! We had 31 family members at Thanksgiving dinner. That number is down about 8from last year! Can't believe I missed all those photo opps :(

After Thanksgiving dinner my sisters, aunt and I devoured the black Friday ads. It is tradition for us to go shopping on Black Friday. Crazy but true! Christina, Brooke and I left at 3:30am to head to Kohls. Oh my heck, there were only more than 1,000 people already wrapping around the parking lot standing in line! We got there later than expected due to traffic at 3:30am! EVERYONE is looking for the deals THIS Christmas it seems! Well we shopped for 11 hours, well maybe I should make that clearer. We shopped for 4 hours and waited in lines the rest of the 7 hours! That may be stretching it a little on the waiting in lines, but it has to be pretty close! I was feeling quite dead and lived on pain killers the rest of the weekend trying to recover. Even my arms were sore! I did get most of my Christmas shopping done. Still have a little to do but I am so happy that I was able to get great deals on the majority of the presents this year!

My little sis, Julie never comes home for a visit without us playing Canasta. Our alltime favorite card game. It just wouldnt be right to have her home and not play. We even have a Canasta Club notebook with scores from the last 3 or 4 years of games..most of them are when Julie is in town! We have a blast playing Canasta. Remember how I said I lived on pain killers after the shopping...well the pain killers alter my memory! Or should I say make it nonexistant! Julie and I are rarely beaten as a team. In fact, they rarely let us play together cause we dominate the Canasta club! I wouldn't be surprised if they don't stalk up on some pain killers to push on me the next time we play! Everyone but Julie was thrilled with my lack of memory, we got beat 3 out of 4 times. It was 12am when we started the final game....cause we refused to quit playing until we won at least once!

Although I am not feeling at my best...well far from my best...this was a fabulous Thanksgiving weekend. I hope to be feeling better by Christmas though so I can enjoy the feast!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

The Pain continues

Just back from the surgeon. He is not at all worried about the catheter in my liver. Says that sometimes they put small catheters in like that to relieve pressure in cirrhosis he thinks it should be just fine and not cause me any problems. The problem is, I am still having pain in my right side! So what is causing it???? I almost feel like they think I am crazy, and because I know the little thingy is in my liver I am making up the pain. UGH!

So anyways...he says he thinks it sounds like classic gall bladder. So now more tests to see if the gall bladder is functioning. The ultrasound on my liver also studied the gall bladder and they said it looked normal already. He sent me out to eat some high fat and greasy food and see if the pain got worse. It has been an hour since I ate and the pain is still just the same. I go on the 3rd for gall bladder function test.

I do have to say I feel a little better knowing that he isn't concerned about the catheter. He said that it will likely cause much worse problems trying to remove it than it would to just leave it. I am still going for a second opinion at Cleveland Clinic in the near future.

I am so exhausted! I think I am going to take a 20 minute power nap before I start working on my Thanksgiving desserts to take to moms house! My little sister is traveling from Atlanta, typically a 8 hr drive but will most likely be much longer tonight with all the traffic.

I can't wait to go Black Friday shopping! It is a tradition for my sisters and I to head out around 4am to shop the day away! I sure hope there are some good deals on the things my children want this year for Christmas! I am looking specifically for a good point and shoot camera for Brooke!

Have a very blessed Thanksgiving!

Saturday, November 22, 2008


I haven't read the books yet, but Brooke and my cousins Kacie and Jodi and I went to the premiere on Thursday night. Wow! FABULOUS movie! Of course everyone says the books are better. Aren't they always?? So I am ready to dive into the first Twilight book! Sunny sent it to me in my surprise box! The Dr has ordered me to just relax and do I am hoping to spend some time relaxing and reading! I am going to do some scrapping too. I think if I scrap in small intervals it shouldn't bother my back. I am sure hoping at least!

It is FREEZING here. Seems like winter has come early. I don't understand why we never have FALL anymore around here. We go from HOT to FREEZING. Where oh where did fall disappear to?? We have already had our first two hour delay with approximately 3 inches of snow covering the roads. It was pouring down big HUGE flakes when we were going in to see Twilight. We were all hoping for lots of snow when we came back out so there would be a two hour delay...but no such luck! We got out of the movie at almost 3am and then back up by 6:30am. EEEEK! So yesterday was a tired day. I worked and then took a twenty minute nap and went to crop club! I slept in till 10am this morning!

Well I really wish I could get my house cleaned up...but as per Dr orders I am heading to the lazyboy to start on my Twilight book and relax:)

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My New Bathroom

It has taken me about as long to put up pictures of my new bathroom as it did to get it completed! Lawanda has been waiting for me to put up pictures for a very long time! So here they are my dear friend:) Lawanda's husband
The Cabinet Maker made this beautiful vanity for my bathroom. Chad did all of the rest of the remodel. Unfortunately, I forgot to take before pictures. Imagine the old mint green tiles and the little 1 inch white tiles on the floor. I love my new bathroom!

I went to my chiropractor again today. Everything was out of place again. He is wandering if my preschool job is getting to me? Hmmm, hadn't really thought of it but I do alot of bending and I sit on the floor alot too. Who knows?? Another thing I thought of is that I am getting alot more sleep now that I have started teaching preschool. I try to make sure I am in bed no later than 11pm. Sometimes I get 10 hrs of sleep. That makes for a lot more laying in bed than I have ever been used too! Up until I started teaching preschool I typically got 4-5 hours of sleep tops. Maybe the extra time in bed is bad for my back? Even though I have a sleep comfort bed? All I know is I hope we can get something out so the pain will go away!

Chad has scheduled for me to go to a liver specialist at Cleveland Clinic. John Fung is suppose to be #1 in livers. Hopefully that will give us some answers. I go to Dr Roberts here in Parkersburg Nov 26th, he is a general surgeon, but my Dr wanted me to go to him so he would be familiar with my case if there was an emergency situation.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Snow Day

The weather outside is frightful...but we only had a 2 hr delay. Since my preschool is only open for 4 hours we just do a one hr delay when the county calls a two hour delay. At first I thought a delay would be nice, an extra little bit to sleep in....well I got to sleep in, but the day at preschool was a little chaotic to say the least! The kids were out of their routine, and things were just crazy! one little boy slipped and fell and hit the back of his head so hard. I was so thankful his daddy was still there when it happened! In about 5 minutes he was smiling and back to normal, but he had a huge bump on the back of his head.:)

I got two early birthday presents in the mail! One from my dear friend Sunny in Utah. She sent me three shirts and a bunch of scrappin goodies! I hope to create something with the new pebbles stamps she sent....I will post a photo as soon as I make something with my new goodies!!:) Oh she also sent me the cutest card I have ever seen! has a little slider on it! Gotta figure out how she made that so I can make one too!

My other present was to myself...hehe...Bad I know! We placed an order for the studio and I splurged and bought the Page Maps book. I just love sketches and this book is full of fabulous scrapbooking sketches! I have been wanting it for a while...and now it is mine!

Now to just get my scrapbook room organized so I can sit down with my Addison Road CD and get some scrapping done! Maybe someone will want to send me a professional organizer for my birthday...hint, hint!!:)

My scripture for the day "For with God nothing shall be impossible." ~Luke 1:37
Hmmm...maybe I can accomplish getting my scraproom organized:)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Great Concert

Jenny from Addison Road and Me!

Wow! I wasn't feeling well Sunday. I went to church and came home exhausted. I took a nap for a few hours in hopes that I would feel up to going to the concert to see Addison Road. Thankfully, with a pain killer and the nap, by 4:30 I was feeling a bit better. I headed to the concert. My sister had volunteered us to help at the merchandise tables for the bands. Heather Sloan and I worked the After Edmund table. I had never heard of this band...but wow! They rocked our socks off! I was totally impressed with them...and had I been feeling good I would have probably been up there bouncing around in the front row! I just had to get their CD. Love this new band and I am totally sure we are going to be hearing lots more from them! They put on an AMAZING show!

Brooke and Nic with After Edmund

Addison Road was awesome too. My sister and Angela Marshall were working the merchandise table for Addison Road. When Jenny came up for autographs at the merch table I was excited to tell her how Hope Now had really blessed me. When I started to tell her about it she said wait, you are the girl from the blog! Her mom has google reader and gets messages whenever someone posts about Addison Road! So "HI to Jenny's mom!!!" Leave a comment:)! Anyways, she had texted Jenny to tell her to look for me at the concert!:) that was so neat! This was probably one of the best concerts I have been to...and I have been to alot. All three bands were phenominal!! Remember, I wasn't feeling that great, so the pics of me are not the hair was looking a little slept on because of the long nap! LOL Me, Brooke and Nic with Addison Road

Today has been a crazy day. It started out all wrong and just kept going crazy! Tyler woke up sick, so he had to stay home from school. I called mom to see if she could come stay with him but she had to go to the hospital because my nephew Cole was having tubes put in his ears. So Tyler stayed alone with my sister, Chad and my mom calling frequently to check on him until I got home at noon. I went through McDonalds this morning for breakfast since the morning chaos left me rushing and not grabbing something on the way out. I paid at McDonalds and then drove off without my food!! DUH! Here is the crazy thing, I was already at the mineral wells exit, approximately 10 miles from McDonalds, before I even noticed I didn't have my food! That was probably the dumbest thing that happened all day but more random craziness has been going on all day...our lights in the upstairs level of our house just quit working, everyone one of them except the bathrooms! Chad is trying to fix that right now. The most recent thing being that our studio downtown has been broken into and someone apparently slept there last night????? CRAZY! So anyways, thinking I might just go to bed early and hope for a more pleasant, normal day tomorrow! Get behind me satan!

Here are some more photos from the concert!

Heather Sloan, Christina, Jenny, Angela and Me

Me with After Edmund- those guys are a blast!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hope Now

This past month has taken me through many emotions. I experienced sickness like I had never dealt with before...scared me pretty bad to say the least. I am still not certain what is going to happen as far as the catheter that is now in my liver. The Lord has used this song "Hope Now" by Addison Road to give me a peace with life right now. I have been belting this song out all the time lately. My little Nic said a few minutes ago, "mom, you really love that song don't you."

Tomorrow, Addison Road will be here in Parkersburg, WV with Building 429. My sister picked up our tickets today and I am just so stinkin excited! I don't think it is a coincidence that they are coming here...I am looking at it as a another comfirmation from the Lord...I am not my own, I've been carried by Him all my life:) No matter what happens, everything is going to be ok.

Hope Now by Addison Road
If everything comes down to love
Then just what am I afraid of
When I call out Your name
Something inside awakes in my soul
How quickly I forget I'm Yours

I'm not my own
I've been carried by You
All my life

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free

When my life is like a storm
Rising waters all I want is the shore
You say I'll be ok and
Make it through the rain
You are my shelter from the storm

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free

Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free
You've become my hearts desire
I will sing Your praises higher
Cause Your love sets me free
Your love sets me free
Your love sets me free

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Still Alive!

Hello Blog world! A bit beaten and battered but still alive.

I have been sick. They thought I had kidney stones and in the process of testing for stones they found that I have a catheter in my portal vien in my liver. Apparently the catheter is the result of a blood transfusion I had as a newborn.

My doctor had the hospital pull my birth records. My mom was mortified to find out that I am truly lucky to be alive. The Drs had told them that I had spit up a bit of blood. According to the birth records I had uncontrolled internal bleeding. They gave me not one but two blood transfusions. My parents knew about one. Then apparently...considering I have a catheter in my portal vien. The catheter broke off into my vien. Interestingly enough there is no mention of the said catheter in any of the medical records.

So I go to a surgeon on Nov 26th to see if the catheter needs to come out or if I can keep it since I have already had it for 33 years.

Really stinks that we are having to pay all these medical bills for all the testing they have done. Seems that the hospital should be covering it free of charge. I am just praying that I stay healthy and don't have to have surgery.

So that is what I have been up to lately. Been pretty freaked out. Found out that I have had a rib out of that might be what was causing the pain that lead them to find this catheter. So now that I have been to the chiropractor several times...I am now feeling better and hopeful that it isn't the catheter causing my pain.

I am also teaching preschool now! I have been since school strated in September. I am loving my job. Just wishing I could be feeling good so I could really enjoy it more!

I hope to be a better blogger now that I am feeling better!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Faith Sisters Birthday Bash Cyber Crop

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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Summer Reading

This summer has been so swamped that I haven't had much time to read! When the kids had tennis I would read while I waited for them and that was about all the reading I got in until vacation! While on vacation I read 3 and 1/2 books!

I am reading the Lauraine Snelling, Red River of the North Series. They are FABULOUS books! I finished book 4 while Brooke had Cross Country practice today.

I had a huge surprise in the mail on Monday! Laura Childs, the author of the scrapbooking murder mysteries that I reviewed at Bella a couple years ago, has a new book coming out in September! She sent me the proof copy...without the cover even. So I have another book to read and write a review for BellaOnline Scrapbooking!

Monday, August 04, 2008

Meal Plan Monday

Here is one of my favorite poses at the beach! I am going to turn this one black and white or sepia...haven't decided yet and blow it up prolly to about 16x20 to frame and hang in my family room.

I have been flying by the seat of my pants lately when it comes to cooking. That is not always a good thing...especially when everytime I think I will make something I go to the kitchen to discover I am missing ingredients! That drives me nutzo!

My earthboxes are really producing...I will post some pictures of them later. We have harvested lots of squash, tomatoes, banana peppers and cucumbers (my favorite)! Our eggplants are just now about ready to harvest!! WOOHOO!

In the hopes of getting back to better menu planning so I can grocery shop accordingly I am gonna try to start my meal plan Monday's posting again! If you want one of my recipes just let me know!! Oh sister and I are contemplating a cooking evening where we cook up a bunch of our favorite dishes and then freeze them for future busy evenings. Anyone tried that and have advice??

Menu Plan
Tyler's Choice of Birthday dinner ~ He chose eating at Grand Ranchero..our favorice Mexican place!

Curly Noodles, squash & onions, sliced tomatoes

Grilled chicken, grilled corn on the cob, baked beans and more squash (my squash is really producing what can I say!)

Eggplant Parmesian (as long as the eggplant are ready to harvest...I think by Thursday they will be! Fresh green beans in the pressure cooker.

leftover night because I have crop club!!

Grilled hamburgers and corn on the cob and you guessed it ~ grilled squash!!

Deer steak with tomatoe gravy, some more fresh green beans.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Back from the Beach

Wow! What an awesome vacation we had at Myrtle Beach, SC! Such a relaxing time to say the least! We have officially been labeled Beach Bums! Our friends Randy and Diana Riffle were vacationing at the same resort with us. They were shocked at the amount of time that we spend ON the beach. Pretty much most of the daylight hours!

The boys LOVE to dig holes in the sand. Brooke and her best friend Jennifer spent their time in the ocean or at one of the 6 pools at the resort...the loved having some freedom! Chad mostly hung out with the boys either in the ocean or digging holes..he did get a a little reading in as well. I am a sun soaker! I wade into the ocean just enough to get cooled down and then I relax in my beach chair with a good book!

I read two and a half books while at the beach! I am reading the Red River Valley Series of Lauraine Snelling books. EXCELLENT author...I have loved every series I have read of hers so far! So I read the first two books in the series while on the beach and I did stay up a couple late nights to finish them as well! They are just so good I can't put them down! As soon as I am done with this post I am going to go relax in my recliner and read some more of the third book!:)

I am uploading pictures right now as I type. I took LOTS of course! I had planned to get some photos with all of us in white shirts and jeans on the beach but that didn't work out so well. I got pretty upset by the lack of cooperation from my family so the day that we were leaving the beach I was pleasantly surprised that Chad wanted to have more family photos taken. So we weren't in our white shirts and jeans...but the pictures turned out great!

I will be posting pictures throughout the week! I am really hoping to have a couple of great quality ones that I can have larger sizes printed for frames in my living room! Keeping my fingers crossed! They are taking forever to upload!!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Worship - Much Of You Jesus

Wow! God is so awesome!

We had an amazing pool party to get the kids excited about VBS coming up! We expected maybe 100 and had WAY MORE than 100! We never really did get a count with so many running all over the place and going under water etc! Now just praying that all of these kids will be at VBS and many of them will come to know Jesus as their personal savior! Such an EXCITING night!

On the way home I heard this song by STevin Curits Chapman...then I got on and my dear sister Kay had posted the lyrics and youtube video of this song! Reading those lyrics and singing that song just sets my soul to worshipping and I was sitting here in front of my computer just singing and praising the Lord.

As I spend tomorrow prepping some more for VBS I just want to keep on praising Him. I want all of us to be making MUCH of Him at VBS!!

I hope this song will lift your spirits and set your soul to worshipping too!:)

Steven Curtis Chapman - Much Of You
From the album All Things New

How could I stand here and watch the sun rise
Follow the mountains where they touch the sky
Ponder the vastness and the depths of the sea
And think for a moment.
The point of it all was to make
Much of me
Cause I'm just a whisper
And You are the thunder and …

I want to make much of You, Jesus
I want to make much of Your
I want to live today and give You the praise
That You alone are so worthy of
I want to make much of Your mercy
I want to make much of Your cross
I give You my life
Take it and let it be used
To make much of you

And how can I kneel here and think of the cross
The thorns and the whip and the nails and the spear
The infinite cost to purchase my pardon
And bear all my shame
To think I have anything worthy boasting in
Except for Your name
Cause I am a sinner
And You are the Savior and…

I want to make much of You, Jesus
I want to make much of Your
I want to live today and give You the praise
That You alone are so worthy of
I want to make much of Your mercy
I want to make much of Your cross
I give You my life
Take it and let it be used
To make much of you


Cleaning, packing, finding pet sitters, finishing up VBS stuff, completing my last online class! That was yesterday...and most likely today too.

Last night we had a Cub Scout party at the water slide! The kids had a blast and I got some fun photos!

Here is a picture of Brooke from our photo shoot the other day! She is getting so grown up looking:(

Josie is needing my eggplant here's to you Jos! I have two eggplant recipes that we really like.

Here is what we call

Eggplant Lasagna
2 med eggplant
1 lb ground chuck
1 lg can tomatoes
1 can tomato paste
1 lg bell peper
1 lg onion
Parmesian Cheese
Mozarella Cheese
3 eggs
1 c flour
1 tbs oregano
olive oil

Slice eggplant 1/4 inch thick and soak in salt water for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, saute onion and pepper. Add burger and brown. Add tomatoe and paste. Cook until sauce thickens. Add water and season as needed.

I do this assembly line style! Mix flour and oregano in flat dish. Dip eggplant slices into egg and then dredge in the flour mixture. Heat oil in large pan and then
add the slices as go. Lightly brown each side.

Layer sauce, eggplant, parmesian cheese and mozzarella cheese until the pan is full.

Bake at 350 for 40 minutes.

Eggplant Parmesian
2 med eggplants (sliced and fried)
2 cans of Italian tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped
Mozarella Cheese
Parmesan Cheese (I prefer fresh)
1 1/2 tsp oregano
2 1/2 tsp butter

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

Line the bottom of a buttered baking dish with a single layer of fried eggplant slices. Top this layer with chopped tomatoes. Add a pinch of salt, a generous sprinkling of mozzarella and a tablespoon or parmesian. Sprinkle a pinch of oregano and cover with another layer of sliced eggplant. Continue building layers of eggplant, tomatoes, cheese until you have used up all the eggplant. The top layer should be eggplant. Sprinkle the remaning parmesian cheese over it and dot with butter. Place in the upper third of the preheated ove.

Bake for 20 minutes. Pull out the pan. Press with the back of a spoon to check if there is an excess amount of liquid. If there is, tip the pan and draw it off with the spoon. Return to the oven for another 15 minutes. Allow it to settle and partly cool before serving. It should not be piping hot.

Note: this is a great dish to prep ahead and refrigerate. It also makes for fabulous leftovers!

Enjoy! I need to get back to my school work! I hope to get my final lesson plan completed today so that summer school will be over before I head off to the beach! WOOHOOO!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Catching Up!

Jeesh! The summer is just flying by like crazy! I can not believe that we will be leaving for vacation this Friday! Myrtle we come!!

I have been super busy as usual. Working on my online classes for continueing Ed to renew my teaching certificate is taking a lot of time! Getting ready for the This Is My Story class that I am teaching at church-an awesome faithbooking class that I am so stinkin excited about! It started this past Sunday night. Also trying to get stuff ready for VBS which starts the Monday following the Sunday that we get back from the everything has to be ready before I go! I am seriously going to be ready for that vacation come Friday!!

Friday we took the kids to Forever Memories photography for a photo shoot. Stevin will be leaving on the 28th to go back to Seatle for the year with his mom so we needed to get our Cousins photos taken before he heads back. Cathy Freed did an awesome job on the photos! I can't wait to show some of them off! But for is one that I took after the photo shoot with Cathy! Since I had all the kids matching and photo ready...I ran over to the park where we spend all of our time at tennis lessons! Beside the tennis courts is this tree that the kids we got a few shots in the tree! Now I just need to get some photoshopping tips so I can brighten them up a bit!

Monday, June 30, 2008

Family Visiting and the Motherload

It has been an exciting and busy past two weeks! First of all cousin Josie and her three children came to visit for a week. While Josie was here I got a call from one of our scrapbook customers mothers. My scrappin friend Teresa Wince passed away from a long battle with a pulmonary disease. Her mother was calling to tell me that Teresa wanted me to have all of her scrapbooking stuff. Josie and I dropped the kids off to visit my mom and we headed to Ellenboro (approximately 45 mins away). I had commented that I hoped it would be worth the trip since gas is so ridiculously high.

When we walked into Teresa's home there was TONS of scrapbooking stuff. Her mom was giving it ALL to me! We put the seats down in my stow and go mini van (man I love those stow and go seats...they sure come in handy!) and packed the van full from front to back and top to bottom. The whole way home Josie and I were just giddy! When we pulled up to the garage we immediately started sorting and trying to organize and oohing and ahing over all the new stuff! It was better than any Christmas presents I have ever had. Teresa had more scrapbooking stuff than I have had in my personal stash...and for those of you that have seen my personal stash...I am sure you are amazed that anyone could have more than me! LOL

So I inherited the motherload! I am still trying to organize all of it but thanks to Josie, it is somewhat under control! I am not sure what I would have done without her helping me!

Josie came on Monday and then left the following Monday. We didn't do much more than organizing the motherload all week! Well ok, we did take the kids to tennis lessons every morning. Brooke to Cross Country practive nearly every evening. Wed night we took the kids to church and then went to the Drive in to see Indiana Jones and Speed Racer. Other than that we organized and then got a little scrapping done at crop club on Friday night...which by the way, turned into an all nighter. Josie and I didn't get home till after 7am! EEEK!

My little sister Julie arrived for a weeks visit the Sunday before Josie left. We spent the evening playing canasta. We had a little INCIDENT involving a sleepwalking child...but I will not go into that because I am sure he would kill me when he was older if he found out I blogged about it!

Julie stayed with mom and dad but visited me everyday. It was so nice having her in town all week. She is usually just here a few weekends of the year. So having her here for a full week was a treat! We got lots of Canasta games in this past week! We also took the kids to the Marietta Aquatic Center. Wed night we went to the Drive In to see Kung Fu Panda and Spiderwick Chronicles. Both of which were super!

Julie headed back home to GA today. Was bummed to see her go back but hopefully we will get to visit GA before school starts in the fall.

So now the company has all returned home and we are trying to get back to normal. My laundry is overflowing. My house is kinda messy. I am overwhelmed with my two online classes and all the work I need to accomplish before vacation. I have to get stuff together for the "This is My Story" faithbooking class I am starting for the summer session at church. Plus, I got all my VBS materials tonight and have to start getting ready for that because it starts the day we get back from vacation! EEEEK!!

Well, writing that to do list has made me exhausted! I better sign off for now!

Friday, June 13, 2008

States I have Visited

Karma had a map of all the places she has been on her blog...or wait. Maybe that was places she has lived? hehe!

Anyways, I thought it was kinda neat so here is mine! I have been to all the pink places. jeesh I still have lots of states to visit!

Decluttering and Online classes

Wow! Where has the week gone? I have cleaned and decluttered my week away! With the exception of a laundry, cooking, dishes, a couple baseball games, a tennis tournament, church and an orthodontist appointment...I have literally been decluttering and cleaning all week....oh yeah throw in a little sleeping too!

The sad part is that I am still not done. Even after a weeks worth of almost non-stop decluttering there is still more! ARGH! We have to much stuff. And why in the world did I want a big house?? So...have come to grips with the fact I will never be completely caught up with all I need to have done around here. It sure feels good to have gotten this much done though! Still have my storage basement (with tons of homeschool curriculum that needs gotten rid of), my office which is almost done, the game cabinet and last but most certainly NOT LEAST my scrapbook room(might take me a week all in itself!)

I am taking 6 graduate credit hours this summer. Thankfully the classes are completely online. I need the six hours to renew my teaching certificate this year. With the cost of gas and the poor economy it looks as though I am gonna have to start applying for full time teaching jobs. I enjoy teaching and being with kids..but I really hate the early morning part of it all! Why can't school start at 10am?? I am a night owl you know...mornings are just HARD on me!

Learned something really neat in my Read/Write Web 2.0 class this week! Have you heard of Social Bookmarks? It is so cool. It is just like the ole favorite on your personal PC except that you can add your favorites and categorize them and share them online! It's pretty cool and I have all sorts of fun ideas running through my head for this! Here is my start using the social bookmark...pretty lame so far but hey I just found out about this...and you know...I haven't had much online time cause of the nonstop cleaning spree this week;)

My goal for Saturday is cleaning the scrapbook room...cousin Josie will be arriving Monday and since that is the room we will be spending most of our time in (I hope!) I better get it organized so we can both have a place to scrap! Oh yeah...Nic has double header baseball games starting at will be getting some serious sun too. You know it has been outrageously hot here lately?? Mid ninties with extreme humidty. What is up with that? It isn't even officially summer yet!

Monday, June 09, 2008

Amish Country

Chad surprised me with a romantic weekend away this past weekend. The boys were both going to Camp Cowan church camp for the weekend...and Brooke had plans of her own. The last time the two of us were on a trip alone together was before Brooke was born! So this was a long overdue weekend away! I have been begging and begging but Chad refuses to leave the kids with someone so we can run off by ourselves. Thank goodness for church camp! ;)

We had a fabulous time in Amish Country! We left home around 2ish Friday. Our first stop was Lehmans and WOW! It was awesome! So many things you can by there! Some of the things brought back childhood memories of things my grandmothers used to have at their houses! I was super excited to be able to gather some canning supplies that we most desperately needed! I got a jar lifter ( no more burning our fingers!) I also got a boiling basket and a Ball canning book! So I am ready for the garden harvest this year! We will be canning in style!

When we left Lehmans we headed down the Amish byway to Millersburg. we stayed at the White House guest suites and had the whole downstairs and porch(complete with porch swing) all to ourselves! It was fabulous! I loved how it was decorated!:) Funny thing....the bed was one of those super tall beds and the comforter and bedskirt are exactly the comforter and bed skirt on our bed at home!

Once we had checked into our hotel we headed to Troyers Amish resteraunt for dinner. YUMMY! I was so stuffed when I left that it hurt to walk! Once we were back to our house we decided to take a little walk in Millersburg...even though we were stuffed! Then we stopped at the little ice cream parlor beside our house and Chad got ice cream...I took a couple licks but couldnt handle anymore than that...I am not sure how he could have possibly fit in his stomach after that Amish dinner!

Saturday morning I woke up at 6:30am! What is up with that??? Well there were only mini blinds on the windows and I am used to it being fairly dark in my room. So I guess the brite room woke me up?? Yes, I was totally weird cause I never ever wake up on my own at that crazy house of the morning! ;)

We headed to Boyd and Wurtham Amish Resteraunt for breakfast and once again were STUFFED! I didn't even eat my whole plate of food. They serve enough for two Amish farmers on one plate! Delish but belly!! Right behind the resteraunt was a scrapbook store...but since we were such early risers they weren't open yet...yes I even woke up Chad early! Now that is unusal..he ALWAYS is up before me! LOL

We drove into Sugar Creek but there wasn't anything open there either. On our way back to Berlin we saw a sign for Yoders Amish Farm. We decided to head out there and it ended up being our absolute FAVORITE of the whole trip! We were able to tour a Dawdi Haus (were the grandparents live), a main house, the bard complete with all the baby animals, an Amish school house and even take a buggy ride on a real amish buggy driven by Mr Troyer(a real amish dude!). The funniest thing happened while we were on the buggy ride! Mr Troyer asked Chad what his occupation was. Chad said "I am an electrician." Then for the first time of the whole buggy ride there was was like he had said I am a voodoo witch or something! LOL Chad broke the silence by saying, she is a teacher. Mr Troyer then said..."oh that is good" and started up conversation with me! Too funny! I told Chad he better just tell anyone else that he works at Dupont..and just leave the electrician part out! LOL

After the amish farm tours we headed to the Holmes Country flea market. I found so many things I would have love to have brought home with me...but my lack on income right now reared its ugly head! I bought some yummy incense, some cardstock and a necklace. Chad hates flea markets and was done in about 10 minutes..when I was only at the 3rd booth! So he went out to take a nap in the car and ended up sunburned! I was in there like 1 1/2 hours. Could have stayed longer but felt bad that he was waiting for me!

We went to Heinis Cheese Chalet and were able to sample over 50 different cheeses. That ended up being lunch for us! All we needed was some crackers!

We then headed back to Berlin. Chad took me to some great shops. His allergies were going haywire because of all the scents in the shops. So once again I tried to rush through them. we walked around and explored downtown Berlin and some of the bulk food places that the Amish shop.

We ate at Der Dutchman for dinner and had another wonderful meal. I didn't want to be stuffed again so I opted for some side dishes instead of a full blown meal...and also got the salad bar. Then Chad and I shared a wonderful piece of cherry pie. MMMM!

The Amish people were so wonderfully friendly. It was just so neat being around them. Especially since I have read all the Beverly Lewis and Wanda Brunsetter books about Amish! I felt like I really knew alot about their lifestyle...and was able to tell Chad a good bit too. It was so cool to just be driving down the road and see Amish buggies traveling with you.

After dinner we went for another drive on the Amish byway. I must say that I was totally shocked at how NOT plain the Amish homes were. You really can not tell them apart from the other homes...aside from the fact that they do not have automobiles in the driveway or electricity running to their house. I was expecting the houses to be the picture in my head was obviously wrong! Actually though...the farm house and Dawdi house at the Yoder farm we toured...those were older homes and looked much like the picture in my head! Apparently the more modern houses are allowed to look just like the "English" neighbors houses!

Remember how I said our bed was really tall? Well Sat night I was getting up to head to the bathroom and forgot how tall the bed was, went to get out of bed how I get out of my own bed and landed hip first onto the hardwood floor! YOUCHERS! I have a nice bruise and woke up Sun morning feeling like I had been in a fight or something!

Sunday morning we slept in till 8:30am and then packed up and headed to breakfast. None of the Amish resteraunts or businesses...or pretty much anything in Amish country was open! We ended up eating at Shoney's in Dover. Then we headed to Parkersburg because we had to pick up the boys at the church at 2pm.

It was a fabulous trip and I was so thankful to have been able to spend a relaxing weekend alone with my most wonderful hubby! Hopefully we will be able to do it again soon!

Thursday, June 05, 2008

The Marriage Protection Amendment- Send a letter to your Represenative

We aren't hearing about this in the wanted to make sure that you could let your voice be heard. It is very easy to send off an email to your representative asking them to back this. If we Christians don't step up to the plate...nobody will. I have provided a link down below that will take you straight to an already typed up letter...and all you do is put in your zip code and they will find your congressman for you! It's totally easy to Just Do It!

A constitutional amendment making marriage legal ONLY between a man and a woman introduced in U.S. House

The Marriage Protection Amendment of 2008 needs your support!

Congressman Paul Broun of Georgia has introduced the Marriage Protection Amendment of 2008 (H.J. RES. 89). This amendment to the U.S. Constitution would make marriage legal only between a man and a woman.

If you haven't heard about this, it is because the liberal media opposes it. So if they simply refuse to report it, citizens will know nothing about it and will not act on it.

As you know, Massachusetts has already legalized marriage of homosexuals, while the California Supreme Court has ruled all laws restricting homosexual marriage illegal. In both places, the courts ruled by a one vote margin. The goal of homosexual activists is to see homosexual marriage legal in all 50 states.

Rep. Broun needs co-sponsors for H.J. RES. 89. Please contact you Representative and ask him or her to co-sponsor H.J. RES. 89.

Homosexual activists are determined to force homosexual marriage on America by using activist liberal judges, like those in Massachusetts and California.

A Federal Marriage Amendment will finally put an end to activist judges tampering with the will of the people.

Click here to send an email to your representative!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

New Recipe- Beef and Curly Noodles

I tried this new recipe. It doesn't exactly look pretty...but it sure was YUMMY! Everyone loved it, including my picky eater!

This is one that will go into my cue of fast to fix dinners!

Ingredients: (I loved this cause the ingredients are things I always have in my cabinets!)
1 lb ground beef or ground venison
2 3 oz packages of ramen noodles (I used chicken but expect any flavor would work fine)
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can whole kernel corn
1 cup of water

Heat a large skillet to med-high heat. Crumble the ground meet and brown, stirring frequently.
Drain off grease.
Break up the noodles before opening by crunching them on the counter (careful cause the end might burst)
Stir in the flavor packets from ramen noodles.
Add tomatoes, corn (with their juices).
Add water.
Add broken up noodles to the skillet.
Bring to a boil, then reduve heat to love, cover and simmer for 10 minutes or until noodles are tender.
Stir occasionally to break up any noodle clumps.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Bad Blogger!

I have been such a bad blogger! My goal in my blog was to try and keep a journal of things going on in life...and I have failed terribly up to this point!

Have been substitute teaching pretty steadily...which has been tough getting used to! I am so spoiled from working at home all these years. Now that I am finally getting into the swing of things the school year is winding down. I am in need of 6 CE hours so I will be taking online classes this summer. Two classes for a total of 6 credit hours. I am kinda nervous about being a student again! It has been so long so I have had college classes. I am especially about the whole online class thing....they were just teaching us how to log onto the internet back when I was in college....let alone having the entire class online! Should be interesting! My classes start June 8th.

We have been having terrible computer problems. A virus hiding out and attacking every so often. I am not sure if we are totally rid of it yet but I have said a prayer and hoping that the troubles are over before my online classes start!

Brookes activities for the end of the school year are finally over. Now to start her summer schedule which is pretty full with camps, tennis and who knows what else!

The boys are both still playing baseball. We have lots of make up games to catch up once the regular scheduled games have finished. Looks like we might be playing baseball most of the summer at this rate!

Have been busy helping my sister get her new house painted and refurbished. Seems I have spent most of my time off there. I finally had to take a break so I could clean my own house which seemed to be falling apart all around me! Now I have to get back to helping her get things done! We are painting a mural on Dereks walls. He has a racecar bed and wants his room to have a race track on the walls! Such fun! We are nearly finished with it...will post pictures when it is done!

School is out next Thursday. Worried about the loss of income but also very excited to have the summer to spend with my kids! We got a trampoline so that should give the kids something new to do this summer. So far they have already spent LOTS of time on it! Hoping the excitement doesnt wear off!

Hopefully I will be having a little more time to keep up with my blogging! Just imagine how far behind I am on reading all of my friends blogs and the posts at Faith Sisters! EEEEK!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

So Thankful...

I am so thankful that I have a relationship with my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. I am so thankful that my relationship with Him is growing deeper and deeper every day. So thankful that every single day my faith grows because I am awakened to the fingerprints of God on my life.

I am so thankful that I am saved...I do not have to prove that I am a "good person" because Jesus Christ died on the cross to save me from my sins. No matter how "good" I am...I could never be sinless. Thank you Jesus for saving me from my sins!!

Just feeling so blessed to know Him and trust in His Word! If he can create the entire universe and everything in it....I know that he has the power to keep his word in tact!

Did you know that over 40 men wrote the Holy Bible? They wrote it over years, and at different times, yet all of them agreed. The Word is inspired and God breathed and I am so thankful that it is alive and means so much to me when I read it!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Making Memories RAK

Wow! I haven't been able to keep up with anything lately! Life has been busy! of my bestest friends came from SC to visit for the week! We scrapped most of the day yesterday! YAY! I was working on my album for the Making Memories Challenge at Faith Sisters This is my first time making a circle album. It was lots of fun! I have had this poem sitting on my scrap table for quite some time and have been wanting to make it into a mini album. I am happy with how it turned out!

Click on the picture to see the rest of the album.

Faith Sisters has a great gift R.A.K. for our contest sponsored by Making Memories for this weeks challenge winner! It is the Fresh Anthology Paint Set and you will be sure to want it for your own! Winner will be based on the use of Making Memories product, creative design and theme.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Easter Challenge at

The Easter Challenge has been posted at Faith Sisters!

Here are my two layouts for the challenge!:)

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

The 80s Rock!

American Idol celebrated the 80s this week. Oh how I love music from the 80s!!

I didn't get to watch the guys last night:( The girls rocked tonight though! I think the first girl that sang I wanna Dance With Somebody might be the one to go Thurs. Either her or Ramielle (sp?)

Here is a layout I made for the Challenge at Faith Sisters that was just posted tonight.

Here is a little fun for you!

You might be a child of the 80's if...

You wanted to be on Star Search. (Didn't we all?)
You can remember what Michael Jackson looked like before his nose fell off. Or even when he had those freaky eyes in "Thriller" at the end of the video.
You wore a banana clip or one of those slap on wrist bands at some point during your youth.
You wore French rolls on the bottom of your splatter painted jeans.
You had slouch socks, and puff painted your own shirt at least once.
You owned a doll with 'Xavier Roberts' signed on it's butt.
You knew what Willis was "talkin' 'bout."
You know the profound meaning of "Wax on, Wax off."
You can remember watching Full House and Saved by the Bell for endless hours.
You have seen at least 10 episodes of Fraggle Rock.
You know that another name for a keyboard is a "Synthesizer."
You'll always hold a special place in your heart for "Back to the Future."
You know where to go if you "wanna go where everybody knows your name."
You thought Molly Ringwald was REALLY cool. (Was there an 80's movie she WASN'T in?)
You know what "psych" means.
You fell victim to 80's fashion: big hair, crimped, combed over to the side, and you wore spandex pants.
You wanted to be a Goonie ("Goonies never say die.")
You knew "The Artist" when he was humbly called "Prince."
You ever wore fluorescent—neon if you will—clothing...
You could breakdance, or wished you could.
You know, by heart, the words to any "Weird" Al Yankovic song.
You remember when ATARI was a state-of-the-art video gaming system.
You own any cassettes or albums.
You were led to believe that in the year 2000 we'd all be living on the moon.
You remember and/or own any of the Care Bear glass collection from Pizza Hut.
"Poltergeist" totally freaked you out.
You carried your lunch to school in a Gremlins or an ET lunchbox.
You have ever pondered why Smurfette was the ONLY female smurf.
You inserted the word "like" into, like, every sentence.
You know what a Doozer is. See Fraggle Rock.
You wore biker shorts underneath a short skirt and felt stylish.
You ever had a Swatch Watch.
You actually spent countless hours trying to perfect the care-bear stare.
You had a crush on one of the Coreys (Haim or Feldman).
You remember when Saturday Night Live was funny.
You had Wonder Woman or Superman Underoos.
You have worn a Banana Clip, or knew someone who did.
You actually thought "Dirty Dancing" was a REALLY good movie.
You have heard of "Garbage Pail Kids" (and perhaps still have a collection of them).
Extra point You have seen the Garbage Pail Kids TV show. (Only one episode was aired.)
You had a crush on Bo Derek.
Punks actually "shocked" people.
You wanted to be The Hulk or Rainbow Brite for Halloween.
You believed that "By the power of Greyskull, you HAD the power!"
You thought that Transformers were more than meets the eye.
You know what a "Whammy" is. ("No Whammy, no whammy, stop!")
Partying "like it's 1999" seemed SO far away.
Songs by Debbie Gibson still haunt you to this day.
3 words: "Atari" "IntelliVision" and "Coleco". Sound familiar?

You remember "Friday Night Videos" before the days of MTV.

You remember when music that was labeled "alternative" really was.
You were shocked and horrified at the Challenger explosion (which you were probably watching in school at the time).

Schoolhouse Rock played a HUGE part in how you actually learned the English language.
You ever dressed to emulate a person you saw in either a Duran Duran, Madonna, or Cyndi Lauper video.
At one point during your teenage years, you walked with a noticeable tilt to one side due to the number of plastic rings on that arm.
"Celebration" by Kool & the Gang was one of the hot new songs when you first heard it at a school dance.
The first time you ever kissed someone at a dance fell during "Crazy for You" by Madonna.
You ever owned one of those embarrassing crimping irons.
You used to hold in your head the thought that all those gold chains on Mr. T actually looked kinda cool and the thought that Mr. T made millions seemed rational to you at the time.
You remember with pain the sad day when the Green Machine hit the streets and made your old big wheel quite obsolete.
You've gotten this far on the list and aren't totally confused.
The phrase "Where's the beef?" still doubles you over with laughter.
You're starting to believe that maybe 30 isn't so old after all, and it's those people over 40 you have to look out for.
Your hair, at some point in time in the 80's, became something which can only be described by the phrase "I was experimenting."
You've ever shopped at a Banana Republic or Benetton, but not in the last five years, okay?
You ever wanted to be gagged with a spoon.
When someone mentions two consecutive days of the week, the Happy Days theme is stuck in your head for hours on end.
You had a crush on Jon Bon Jovi, or knew someone who did.
You thought eating Reese's Pieces would attract your own Alien.
You have ever called 867-5309.
You had a poster of Rob Lowe, Kirk Cameron, or Michael J. Fox on your wall.
You held the top score on Pac-Man.
You HAD to have your MTV
You know what a "burnout" is.
You owned a Jordache anything, or you remember when Jordache jeans were cool.
You remember when Madonna was just hitting the scene.
You remember the original version of Windows: Macintosh.
Chevy Chase was really funny in those vacation movies.
You actually know who Rick Springfield is .
You jammed to the Miami Vice theme and thought Jan Hammer was cool.

Did I leave any off? Please post in the comments if you have any other to add

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

I'm in a Commercial

I am in the Scrapapalooza commercial! Was kinda nervous that I would look like a big dork but they really did a good job with the commercial. My kids have been watching WTAP to see it come on! LOL It will be running all week. I am going to attatch it here but not sure if it will work or not!


Wednesday, February 27, 2008

American Idol Girls?

Snow day here today! So there were kids running around all over my house! It was one of the those kind of days that I had so much planned to do...but never really got to it cause other things kept coming up to do. UGH! It still turned out to be a pretty productive day though.

The Idol girls didn't impress me tonight. Actually, I was really unimpressed. I am with Simon tonight! They all need to pick better songs for next week. Can they not tell that the songs just don't work for them? Who will go tomorrow night? Hmmm I just can't say.

Not sure if the kids will have school tomorrow or not. I am hoping for a productive day tomorrow. Planning on doing some scrapping for upcoming classes I am working on.

American Idol Guys impress again!

I have been a littler under the weather the past couple of days. I decided to take it easy so have been working on some little projects that needed caught up. Then I indulged in another great read The Parting written by Beverly Lewis. Beverly Lewis is by far one of my favorite authors.

For the first time ever I have decided to keep a running list of all of the books that I read this year. I have never done this before. I decided to do it when my mom had asked me if I had read a book...and even though it sounded familiar I just couldnt figure out if I had read it or not! LOL So thought it would be fun to record all the books that I read. Believe it or not this book is the first one I have read in 2008! I have just been SO BUSY!

I really enjoyed last nights American Idol! Will have to say that Robbie did not impress. However, I was really impressed with David Cook! He got my vote last night for sure! Brooke and Nic are voting for David Archaleta (sp?).
I was also really impressed with Chickezee! He rocked! I especially loved his come back to Simon...about only Simon wearing the same thing twice on TV! I was laughing so hard that I spit my drink!!

I think Luke did well also last night and David that was good!

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Tyler's Baptism

Tyler decided at Awana a few weeks ago that he wanted to be baptised. We were all thrilled to pieces that he has given his heart to the Lord. He is such a tender hearted little boy. Such a blessing in our lives. We are so so proud of him! Here are a few shots from the baptism.

After church, Grammy Betty took us out to the Texas Roadhouse to celebrate Tyler's baptism! Grandma Sarah, Papa Ed and Uncle Matt joined us too. It was a long wait since we had nine people...but the food was sure yummy and worth the wait!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Snow Day

The kids had a snow day today! They were so anxious to get outside and play...but it was misting nearly all day. After lunch they went outside and had a blast. Nick and Derek made a giant snowball and had a blast rolling it around the yard. Then they made a little snowman. They wanted to make a snowman for each person int he family! They were running out of snow though!

Tyler was my little cleaning helper. He cleaned up the entire toy room and got it looking GREAT! I owe him a Webkins for all that help;) He is a Webkins collector now! This will be his third. After cleaning he went out to build a snowman.

Diana came over and we scrapbooked. I worked on some upcoming Faith Sisters Challenges...felt so good to get those done!

Chad wasnt feeling well today. He never ever calls off work but today he did. I woke up at 6:45 and he was still in bed. Very unusual! Say a prayer for him. He is totally stressed about what to do with the surgery...and I think he might be getting an ulcer from all the stress and worry. Hoping he will schedule the knee surgery soon.

The boys had their Blue and Gold banquet tonight. They were so thrilled with all the badges and belt loops they got! It was a fun evening. I took tons of pictures! Lots of boy scout scrapping to come!

Chad's parents are coming this weekend. We are celebrating Tyler being baptised! His big day is Sunday!:)

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Lovin American Idol!

I spent the entire day cleaning, laundry and more cleaning. So much fun! What a relief to have things sparkly and smelling fresh though. I hate the process but the outcome is just so refreshing!:)

I think I have the nagging urge to start ripping off wall paper in the entry way. My laundry room and downstairs bathroom are in much need of some paint too. Why can't I just be content with how it is! So I expect that any day now I will take on the task of stripping wall paper and painting. My whole entire house was wall paper when we moved in. It is very nice wall paper big flowers or antying crazy. Just marbled and very subtle. The entry way though...well it looks like a dirty dog came in and shook all over the walls. Just little brown specks everywhere. I have always hated it....if I can get the energy I might start ripping it off. The only problem with ripping it off the bathroom upstairs when I ripped off the wall paper I discovered bare walls. They didn't even finish the drywall before putting up the wall paper. Yeah! A mess! So I am terribly afraid what stripping off other wall paper might reveal! If I knew it would just be adhesive removal and then painting I would have done it a couple years ago. However, it might require hiring someone to come in and finish the drywall.....UGH! Well we shall see cause I expect that as soon as I get going on the laundry room and get it finished I will start on the entry way. Chad is going to love it that I have this painting bug......hehehe....being totally sarcastic. He recently said he is done working on the house for a long while. We have truly done tons to this place since we moved in. The floors were our major project. We ripped carpent out of the entire place and put in hardwood. No matter what I have to get the laundry room and guest bedroom painted. All of the baseboards need a good coat of paint too. When we did the floors we used the primered baseboards....since they were already white I just left them! They are starting to show the wear though. It's time for them to be painted....ugh I hate painting trim work! However, I am very good at it so it is always the job that I get when it comes time to paint.

So how about American Idol! I am so loving this season. We have such great talent to choose from! I think America did well with the voting. Garret and Colton were two that I wasn't real thrilled with. I am glad to see that Luke gets another chance. Is it just me or does he remind you of the dude from 90210? LOL I am thinking his name was Luke too.

I really liked Amy. Sad that she had to go. I think she will get picked up as a model or something though cause she is just beautiful and Paula is so right...the camera loves her! I really liked Joanna too. That was not the best song for her though. I have decided that it is going to be hard to see any of these girls leave. They are all so talented. I do really like Amanda though. She may be rough around the edges...but she can most definitely ROCK!

Can't wait till next weeks idol!!

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

American Idol Girls

I am kinda stumped on the girls. There are some really good ones this season.

My stand out favorite is the Rock n nurse Amanda. I think she is unique and talented! Will be interesting to see how she does in the other genres.

Carly is one of my other tops but I wasn't as impressed with her tonight. She was one of the sick ones though.

I don't think that the girls did as well tonight as the guys did last night though. The guys rocked last night! I am gonna have to wait and see with these girls. We do have some really great ones to choose from!!

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

I got Tagged

I've been tagged by my good friend Lawanda.

You must post the rules before you give your answers. You must list one fact about yourself for each letter of your middle name. Each fact must begin with that letter. If you don't have a middle name, just use your maiden name. After you've been tagged, you need to up-date your blog with your middle name and answers. At the end of your post, you need to tag one person for each letter of your middle name. (Be sure to leave them a comment telling them they've been tagged and need to read your blog for details).

My middle name is Michelle! Hehe!

M-mom to three wonderful kids!
I Love Pickles!
Hildebrand was my maiden name!
Everyone says that my daughter and I look exactly alike.
Laugh easily
Love my wonderful hubby Chad
Enjoy scrapbooking way to much!

OK there you have it! So I tag Sunny, Karma, Tammy,
Dahlia, Eva, Kim, Anne, Jamie

My Top 3 American Idol Guys

I just gotta say that I am impressed with the talent of these guys on season 7. Every single one of them are good. It is tough competition this season to say the least!

I have picked my favorites! I always lean toward the rockers of course!

My top pick is Robbie Carrico. Do you know that he was born in Beckly, WV! A good ole WV boy! He also has a pet Yorkie! Kinda sealed the deal for me. He has a fabulous voice with a great range.

My next pick is Jason Castro. Not loving his dreads...but he has a great voice! Very talented guy. Seems a tad bit shy...hopefully he will overcome that quickly!

Micheal Johns has a great voice too. However, I kinda liked David Cook as well. So my third place pick is a tie right now!

So I wander who will be sent home? My guess is Garret and Luke. However, I really wish it would be Danny. He just gets on my nerves! Sadly he has a good voice...but oh that attitude. UGH!

Can't wait to see what the girls bring tomorrow night! My favorite is already Amanda..hoping she blows them away Wed night!

American Idol Junkie signing off!

Monday, February 18, 2008

I'm Back!

Well it has been a rough few weeks! Both of our computers were attacked by viruses! Seems that our virus protection expired....oops....that will NEVER happen again! This has been a nightmare! MAKE SURE YOU HAVE VIRUS PROTECTION SOFTWARE!

Chad had to totally wipe out my computer and start from scratch. It has been terrible! The computer is finally working again! My laptop is still a little slow...but at least it doesnt' have all the popups!

For Valentine's Day Chad got me an external hard drive! WOOHOO!! I have now backed up ALL of my digital photos on the the external hard drive. Now to just get them uploaded to the Kodak Gallery! It's the perfect time to get them uploaded because they have a promotion going on! you can get 150 prints for just $15! Make sure to put in the coupon code: GETPRINTS.

Now I am just trying to catch up with everything! It seems that everytime I go to look for something it is missing on this computer! I have lost MS Publisher, Microsoft Office, all of my Favorites! UGH>>>When will the nightmare end!!!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

American Idol

Ok I admit it...I am a bit of an American Idol junky! It is the only show that I really ever watch on TV. I don't get to catch every show of the season ever but I have been watching regularly for the past two seasons. We don't have Tivo so I don't get to save and watch later...but it's ok.

The auditions are not my favorite. I feel so terrible for the people that really think they can sing. They are so heartbroken when they are turned down. That poor guy with no front teeth that sang the moses song. That was sad...and the judges just shattered him laughing so hard.

I also really have a hard time with the crudeness that they allow during the auditions. Falling the people around that are having a bad attitude...just encouraging them get even worse. UGH! That is just not needed.

The only part I like about the auditions is trying to pick who I think will make it to the top 25!

I don't know their names yet...but so far my picks:

The girl with the daughter that has the disease that was on the first night. Her family even prayed around her before she went in to audition.

The guy that said he has a style like Red Hot Chili Peppers. Great voice...I think he will go far.

Drew the farm boy. Love his country sound and he just seems like a great wholesome, well mannered guy with a good voice. Simon needs to open up and accept country...I can't believe he said no to this one!

The girl that immitated Britney Spears. She has a phenominal voice. She really nailed all the songs she sang!

I think I might be forgetting a couple. I will come back and add them later! LOL

I did get pretty miffed both nights. I do not think they should have let that old guy get on and sing his R rated song. He said it was about abstinence....but it was uncalled for. Then tonight I got mad about the judges bashing Bruce...the guy who had agreed with his dad for abstinance until marriage. I absolutely can not believe the judges bashed him...and then Ryan had the voiceover as Bruce walked away...that said kiss some girls so you can come back next year as a man. Are you kidding me? That was just wrong. Do we wander why the U.S. has so many teen pregnancy problems?? The nations #1 show even bashes good moral decisions. That guy should have made it on to Hollywood. He had a much better voice than a couple of the ones they sent on. Plus, he would have made a great role model for teens of this day and age.

The one thing that I have been impressed with both seasons that I have watched, is how God has used this show to plant seeds. As well as to spotlight some Christian artists. Melinda was amazing last year...and she has went on to do some great things in the Christian arena. My favorite by far though is Chris Daughtry. HE ROCKS and he is proud to be a Christian! Even on the past two nights of auditions there have been Christian songs sang, and so many people proudly wearing their cross necklaces. Families praying together. WOOHOO! On national television!

Praying that the Lord will use this season of American Idol to bring him glory! Let's support the Christian talent! I am ready to start voting!

So who are your picks so far?

Monday, January 14, 2008

Partially Hydrogenated Oil

If you know know that I have been trying to avoid partially hydrogenated oils in my families diet for at least the past year. My dad, being the health nut that he is, started reading articles about it and telling me to stop giving it to my kids. I did a little of my own research and then understood why he was so determined to make me listen! This is the reason that one of my goals for 2008 is to cook more meals for my family. From scratch....not boxed or bagged stuff full of junk even though it looks healthy.

In short, trans fats are poisons. They interfere with the metabolic processes of life by taking the place of a natural substance that performs a critical function. And that is the definition of a poison. Your body has no defense against them, because they are not natural. Partially hydrogenated oils do not exist in nature.

Substances that are literally metabolic poisons like partially hydrogenated oil are banned in Canada and Europe. And even some US cities like NYC, Boston, San Francisco have banned it in their resteraunts. However it is still widely used in many resteraunts all over the US and in nearly everything you pick up off the grocery store shelves. It's used instead of butter because it adds texture and flavor to foods and is much cheaper than real butter.

It is seriously hard to avoid this stuff! When you start reading food labels, it is astonishing how many products you will find that contain partially hydrogenated oils. Most chips, crackers, instant coffees and cocoas and oh so much more....even frozen meals! I rarely buy anything anymore without first looking at the label. The stuff is even in some candy!

Here is what you can do: For starters, read food labels and avoid anything that contains the words "hydrogenated". That means partially hydrogenated oils, hydrogenated oils, or anything of that kind (and mono-diglycerides,Interesterified Oils as well- these are just new names they are giving hydrogenated oils to confuse people). When eating out, avoid deep-fried foods at all costs,most resteraunts deep fry with partially hydrogenated oil because it is cheaper! Buy real butter and NOT MARGARINE....margarine is full of the bad oils.

Not only are Partially Hydrogenated Oils bad for you...they also make you get fat. Ever wander why the US has such an obesity problem when other countries do not?? Hmmm....cause this junk is banned there! When you eat normal fats, the body metabolizes half of them in 18 days. When you eat trans fats the body requires 51 days to metabolize half of them.

Tell others to boycott foods containing Partially Hydrogenated oils. There are dozens of references in scientific literature documenting the ill effects of trans fatty acids especially in relation to heart disease. If you have difficulty in convincing someone of the value of avoiding trans fats, the extensive references now available in the scientific literature are helpful.

Here are just a few links to some of the info I have read:

Wednesday, January 02, 2008


The new Faithbooking challenge at Faith Sisters is set to go live tonight. The challenge is to Create a layout or piece of art that can be displayed to remind you of your New Years Resolutions. So I have been thinking today about my goals for 2008.

1. Scrapbook at least 20 mins a day. Hopefully more!
2. Read my bible daily.
3. Be a shining light in all more gossiping and complaining!
4. Provide homemade nutritious meals for my family everyday.
5. Attend Intercessory prayer on Thursday evenings.
6. Attend Bible Study Fellowship.

I am so looking forward to a wonderful 2008!

Thought and picture for today:
"Are not two little sparrows sold for a penny? And yet not one of them will fall to the ground without your Father's consent and notice." -Matthew 10:29

I took this picture in my mother-in-laws backyard. The whole tip of the tree was filled with birds when I went out.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year to everyone! My prayer is that we all have a very blessed and prosperous 2008.

It is our tradition to bring the New Year in with a music party at my mom and dads. Every year for as long as I can remember Dad and Mom have hosted this music party. All of dad's music friends come over and jam all evening. Other friends and relatives also join us to enjoy the music and fellowship. Those of us who don't join in the music jam usually end up playing games.

This year we played Canasta....which is a game taught to us by Grandma Vinnie. It was her absolute favorite game. Christina and Brenda played the new Life Twist and Turns game with the kids.

The musicians are all getting older and each year it seems that they pack up earlier than the last! Once they left the rest of us watched New Years parties from the past that dad had recorded. The party that was last recorded before this year was 1998. Brooke was really into shaking maracas that year and Grandma Vinnie was right there dancing and shaking with her. PRICELESS! It was so great to see those videos of Grandma! Tyler was a 5 month old baby. There was a few minutes where Grandma was singing to him. It made me realize how neglectful I have been with videotaping. Ever since I got heavily into scrapbooking I have taken bazillions of photos. Yet I rarely ever pick up the camcorder. In fact our camcorder got broken in 2006 and we have never even replaced it. I want to try to save up for one now. Even if you don't watch the videos until 10 years later! It is just so awesome!

Both of my nephews are now learning to play the violin. Yes, those tiny violins are real! They broke out there intruments to join in the jam session! We had such a great time!