Thursday, October 29, 2009

WOULD YOU DO ME A FAVOR PLEASE?

I just can't keep up with blogging, commenting and reading your blogs this week. Your blogs, my dashboard and google reader show me that you're all posting some awesome stuff. And I can't find the time to read hardly any of it.

So, would you all please stop posting to your blogs for a week or two? Maybe three? Because I am never going to catch up, I know that, but y'all got some good stuff out there that I want to read. And you keep posting more good stuff and I want to read that too.

So stop it please! Seriously. Stop teasing me. I know that I won't ever be able to catch up, but if you wouldn't mind posting some real lousy stuff for the next couple of days, then maybe I wouldn't feel like I was missing something.

So help a gal out here. Just post really lousy stuff, that noone would want to read, and then I'll feel better. Thank you.

This has been a public service blogging announcement. Now we will return you to your regularly scheduled programming.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: IF AT FIRST YOU DON'T SUCCEED

Making your home sing Mondays

Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday meme! Every day you are doing something to make your house into a home for yourself and your family (if you have one). My point with each Monday post is, what are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing?

It can be an attitude or an action. Motivation, our attitude, baking, encouraging our husband or children (if we have either one), organization, cleaning, saving money....the opportunities are endless.

I just thought I'd mention that last week's "making my home sing" plan did not go so well. Oh, I had high hopes, but high hopes did not keep my hand away from the snooze button. In fact, one morning I overslept and was extremely surprised as I did not even remember hearing the alarm go off.

In fact, I went so far as to check the alarm because I was sure that it was no longer working. However, the alarm does work, which leads me to believe that my ears are no longer working. Either that or I am lacking in discipline. Sigh.

Oh, and that one week where I said that I wanted to try candles to put beauty in my home? That whole week turned out to be a very strange week for us, schedule wise, and the family had to leave at different times, we ate at different times and once I ate all by myself! So, no candles that week.

The week before last I had several things I wanted to do in the kitchen to make meal preparation easier. For instance, I wanted to brown a few pounds of ground turkey, cook some chicken and pop it in the freezer, cut up some green peppers and flash freeze them, make a couple of extra meals and pop them in the freezer, and reorganize my recipe file.

Well, I managed to do all of that, except for reorganizing my recipe file. It is still a mess. I just ran out of time.

My point is, just because we have some things that we want to try to brighten up or organize our homes, or new ideas we want to try, well....it doesn't mean it's always going to work out that week.

But just because things didn't work out that week, it doesn't mean the ideas were bad. We need to keep trying and not give up. Many times I have great ideas and I try to implement to many of them at once. That can be overwhelming. Sometimes it's best to take it slow, and only add one or two new habits (or ideas) at a time.

So, I'm going to make my home sing this week by not getting discouraged when my life does not fit in with the big plans that I make. That doesn't mean they are a failure, or that I have failed. It just means that sometimes things happen and we need to be flexible!

So instead of overwhelming yourself with to much to soon, try adding one new habit a week (or a month). Make your bed every day for a month. Try one new recipe every week for a month. Throw away the junk mail (instead of letting it pile up on the counters) every day for a month. Concentrate on doing that one thing well, until you've "got" it.

This week, my habit will be trying to tame the paper tiger and getting control of my filing (including my recipe file).

What are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing? Please go here for instructions and/or ideas and come back here to link up to join us today! Please do not put your own Making Your Home Sing Monday Linky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post. Also, please don't forgot to leave me a comment!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

IS THIS THING ON?

Hello! Pay no attention to the man (or woman) behind the curtain. I am just testing some things on here and needed a post to play around with. So pretend that you aren't reading this.

In fact, now would be a great time to write anything I wanted, since nobody is supposed to be reading this anyway.

It's just me, myself, and I on here, since I just told you all not to read this. You're not reading it are you? You're reading this, aren't you? Even after I said not to? How are you at following directions? Yeah, me neither. So if you're reading this, stop reading this. You're still reading this aren't you?

Now, it's just me on here. All by myself. Hmmmmm, it echoes in here.

Hello? Hello! Hello!

So how are you, momstheword?

Or, if I may be so bold, how are you, Nan? May I call you Nan? I'm fine, thank you. And you?

Now, I'm talking to myself.

Now, I'm talking to myself telling myself that I'm talking to myself. Sigh.

Hello.

Hello?

Is this thing on????

*clears throat* me, me, me, me, ahem, do, re, mi, fa, so, la, tea, I mean, ti, etc., etc.,

La La La La La La La La La

And so I sez to myself, Self? I sez....

I refuse to admit to writing this post on the grounds that it may intimidate me.....no, that's not right......irritate me? Nope, that's not right either. Initiate? Nope. Oh yeah, I refuse to admit to writing this post on the grounds that it may incoherent me.

Oh, and since you aren't reading this I can say that my hair is being stupid and I have a pimple on my chin.

I will also say that my hair and I are no longer speaking until it apologizes to me.

And I would apologize for using the word "stupid" but you're not reading this anyway, are you?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

DOES ANYBODY EVER READ THESE TITLES ANYWAY?

Did you know that if you break a cookie in half before you eat it all the calories will fall out? Bet you didn't know that, did you?

Did you know that if you eat dessert standing up gravity will cause all the calories to fall down towards the ground? So, consequently, if you don't want your ankles to swell, eat sitting down. If you don't want your "sitter" to swell, eat upside down. That way gravity will cause the calories to go to your head and your hair will get big and fluffy!

Did you know that if you eat dessert for breakfast you won't have to wait all the way until dinner to eat it? Seriously, who knew?!

Did you know that if you answer the phone "goodbye" and then hang up you will confuse the caller long enough for you to make a clean getaway before he/she calls back?

Did you know that if you accidentally wear your sweatshirt on backwards, have toilet paper stuck to your foot, have broccoli in your teeth, or wear your shirt inside out not one person will tell you, but if you accidentally leave your purse on top of your car and drive away everybody and their brother will point it out to you. Not that I've ever done that or anything.

Did you know that if you can't think of anything to eat and you go open the fridge and look inside it for 45 minutes, that you still won't be able to think of anything to eat? (By the way, this one only works if you're a teenager).

Did you know that standing in the "15 items only" line at the store with 350 items in your cart still means only 15 items. No matter how much you laugh and apologize and giggle, the rest of us can still count.

Did you know that staring at the phone will not make it ring? However, taking a bath will.

Did you know that your children will not hear you call their name from six inches away, but they can hear you whisper to your husband "Should I order pizza for dinner?" from six blocks away.

Did you know that those little tiny people in your t.v. really can't hear you talking to them?

Did you know that it's hard to come up with a title for every blog post and you wonder if anybody ever reads those titles anyway?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE RECIPE


This cookie makes my heart beat faster. This cookie had me at hello. In fact, I had to take a bite before I actually took the picture, which is why there is a bite missing out of it. Oops, sorry!

This cookie leaves me with very little self-control. That is why it is better if I hide these cookies somewhere or put them in the freezer and remove them out of my sight.

It is also good that my husband doesn't make them that often. Otherwise I could not be held responsible for my actions (or my weight). They're that good. At least, I think so.

You know the saying "That's the way the cookie crumbles?" Well, these cookies sort of fall apart when you eat them. I like that about a cookie. For the record, I can't believe I just wrote that last sentence....or the last three paragraphs for that matter. Never thought I'd be blogging about a cookie for pete's sake.

Also, today is my day to blog over at the Five Mom's blog so I hope you'll visit me over there and learn some of the fun things about being a grownup! But first, here's the recipe (for the cookie, not for the five moms).


CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES

1 cup butter (softened but not melted)
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
3 1/2 cups flour
1 cup vegetable oil
1 egg
1 cup oatmeal (we use regular)
1 cup cereal (can use Rice Crispies, Chex, Cornflakes, Lucky charms, whatever)
1 package chocolate chips
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1 teaspoon baking soda

Mix all of the ingredients together until it's well mixed. Drop by spoonful onto an ungreased cookie sheet. You can press it down a little if you want, it's up to you. Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 minutes.

If you want to see some more recipes, or lovely meal ideas please go here to Tasty Tuesday!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: OVERSLEEPING

Making your home sing Mondays

Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday meme! Every day you are doing something to make your house into a home for yourself and your family (if you have one). My point with each Monday post is, what are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing?

It can be an attitude or an action. Motivation, our attitude, baking, encouraging our husband or children (if we have either one), organization, cleaning, saving money....the opportunities are endless.

I am having such a hard time getting up lately! It's getting annoying. It's not like I have a very good reason. I just don't want to get up and so I just fall back to sleep, I guess. Has that ever happened to you?

The problem is that if I allow myself to sleep in for even a half hour, then I start out already behind in homeschooling and in my work around the home. I am rushing around trying to eat breakfast and get stuff done before we start school. Not only that, but all day I am playing catch up.

Most people don't have a problem getting up if they have a job to go to. They may have trouble getting to work on time, but they don't usually have trouble dragging themselves into work. Not if they want to keep their job anyway.

Also, most people don't have trouble getting up and staying up if they have small children. After all, it's not like you want to give a toddler the run of the house while you go back to sleep for a few hours. Not if you want to keep the toddler (and the house) in one piece!

But I think some people have trouble getting up if they don't "have" to get up. If they don't have to be at work on time, or if they don't have a baby or small child who is an early-riser, or children who need to be in school.

However, there have been some who will get their kids off to school and then pop back in bed for a bit more sleep. For the mom who has a newborn keeping her awake at night, that may be the only way to recharge her batteries.

But what about the mom who just likes to sleep? *slowly raises hand* What about the mom who is a "night" owl? What about the mom who says up til 2 or 3 in the morning blogging, reading or watching t.v. and then sleeps in til noon (if she can)? Or takes a 2-3 hour nap in the afternoon because she stayed up so late? Or doesn't nap but is in a grumpy mood all day because she's tired from her late night?

You can ask practically any mom and she will say that she is tired. Especially a mom with little children. Or a mom with teenagers who is lying in bed listening for the car to pull into the driveway! Even busy women with no children are burning the candle at both ends sometimes. We're all tired!

The problem is that when we want to fit more things into our day (especially fun things) the first thing to go is usually our sleep. Then, our quiet time with the Lord suffers because we either can't stay awake, or we just "don't have time" for it.

Then, perhaps the next thing to go is our patience or our temper! I don't know about you, but when I get tired I can be a little....shall we say, grumpy?

The next thing to suffer is most likely our families and our homes. Because when we're tired we are more likely to snap at those we love. Also, if we're staying up to late and sleeping in or napping in the afternoons, we don't have as much time to do the cleaning, or we're just dragging all day and don't have the energy (again, I'm not talking about moms with babies keeping them up all night)

I don't take naps so if I'm tired, I am just in a fog all day and don't feel like cleaning, cooking, or doing much of anything. You know what I'm talking about, you have those days where you are just tired and lacking in energy or motivation all day. Clearly, our bodies are trying to tell us something.

So this week I am going to try and make myself go to bed on time so I can wake up on time. Such a small thing but the results can be huge!




Thursday, October 15, 2009

A LITTLE COTTAGE, AND I DON'T MEAN CHEESE!

Not to long ago I did a post called "Cottage Style, My Way."

I have to admit that I have never spent much money decorating our home. I think, if you came to my house, you would see that, lol! But I love pouring over decorating magazines and books and that is a great way to get ideas.

If you see something you like in a magazine, you can tear the picture out and put it in an "idea" file. Pretty soon a pattern will emerge of things you like, and you can find a way to duplicate that look (or a similar one) in your own home.

Another great thing is that you can often spend alot less money for a similar look.


This kitty's name is Musette. Any ideas where we got her name from? She was a hand-me-down from my mom and is the only cat I can have as she doesn't bother my allergies! I love her sweet face.


I love flowers, indoors and out. I especially love roses. I also love birdhouses. So if I can have a few things around that I love, then it brings me joy to look at it!


Just because you are living on a budget doesn't necessarily mean that you can't have the look that you like.

I saw a large metal piece with picture frames in it very similar to this in a store years ago for about $50.00. My hubby told me to go ahead and buy it but I couldn't bring myself to spend the money. However, I kept looking for something similar and saw this one in a store for $8.00 and snapped it up.


I don't like huge amounts of clutter but I do like to put a few things out here and there on a table or a shelf. These were some secondhand finds.

The basket on the left and pink flowers on the right are there for a reason, camouflage. If you look carefully above the basket you will see the hardware I am trying to hide.

We needed two shelves for some electronics equipment so hubby made them, as cheaply as possible. They were only supposed to be a temporary solution. Now, our needs are different so I am "hiding" some of the ugly metal parts of the shelf. Eventually we will probably replace it with a nicer shelf but for now, it's camo all the way, baby.


This cheery basket sits in the sunroom. A friend was tossing it out but gave it to me instead, so final cost: free!

Here is another picture. The table topper is a lot brighter than it looks in the picture. The topper matches the cushions and the window valance. I need to update the look in here but it's low on the priority list.

The nice thing about second hand treasures is that you can try something out and if you don't like it, you haven't invested alot of money into it. I bought this at a yard sale for 10 cents. I love bunnies!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

COOKING WITH MOM'S THE WORD: FREEZING PEPPERS

Just when you thought it was safe to visit my blog I come up with another "Cooking With Mom's The Word" post. Sorry, today is not your day, tomorrow is not looking so good either......

So here's today's lesson, folks. Go to the store and buy yourself a bunch of green peppers on sale. You know that winter is coming and the price will go up, so buy more than you usually do. Then wait a few days, forget that you bought some green peppers and buy a bunch more.

Make sure that the produce drawer in your fridge is full of produce. That way, you can stuff the bag full of peppers onto the bottom shelf somewhere. This step is very important or the peppers won't fall out onto the floor when the fridge is opened next.

Wait a few days, assuring your husband you haven't lost your mind and that you have a purpose for all those peppers. Then wait until right before you have to go somewhere to begin this next step. That way, you will wait until the last minute to do it, which is good for a little fun and will make you late for your evening event. If somebody asks why you're late, blame it on the peppers.


Wash the green peppers and dry them thoroughly. Examine the peppers to make sure they're dry, and realize that never in your life have you looked at a pepper so carefully. Realize you don't even examine a signed contract as carefully as you do that pepper. Admire the bright shiny color and consider going shopping for a new bright green sweater. Christmas is coming!

Cut the peppers whichever way you cut them but don't cut yourself. Start singing "I'm a Pepper, he's a Pepper, she's a Pepper, we're a Pepper, wouldn't you like to be a Pepper too?" Start thinking a Dr. Pepper would taste good right about now.

Admire your manicure while you cut the peppers. Notice how your bright red nails match the green pepper quite nicely. Think of maybe getting a red skirt to go with the green sweater. Christmas is coming!

I cut mine as shown above, and then you don't have a mess of seeds that way, all that's left is the core. If any good pieces are left on the pepper you can just cut them off easily enough so you don't waste anything.

Here is one way to cut them. This way you can use them like this, or dice them up later if you want to. After you cut them up, place them on a cookie sheet and stick them in the freezer for an hour. This is sometimes called tray freezing or flash freezing. Not to be confused with t.v. trays or flash dancing.

While you're slicing them up, make sure you think about the fact that your peppers aren't perfect. Perfect peppers perpetuate prideful people. Say that ten times fast.

After the hour is up go out to the freezer and get your beautiful green jewels. Don't bother getting a glove, the ice cold tray will feel fine on your bare hands.....for about 2.5 seconds.

Be thankful you are wearing a sweatshirt instead of short sleeves and rest the cold tray on the long sleeve. Try not to trip.

Also, try not to remember the time when you were a child and a frozen spoon got stuck to your tongue because someone left it in the ice cream carton and you pulled the spoon out and tried to lick the ice cream off. Wonder what kind of dangerous person leaves the spoon in a carton of ice cream anyway!


Take all the frozen peppers off the tray and place them in freezer bags. The flash freezing will keep them from sticking together in the bag. After you put them all in the freezer bags, wonder if you should have put them in a food saver bag instead.

Decide that you don't want to waste the freezer bags so make your own "food saver" bag. Seal the freezer bag until almost closed. Then place a straw into the bag and seal the bag around the opening of where the straw is. Then place the straw in your mouth and inhale until the bag deflates. Then quickly pull the straw out and seal the bag the rest of the way.

Date and label the freezer bag and put it back in the freezer. Then eat dinner as fast as you can and leave the house and have some fun! This works for me anyway! Please go here for more Works for Me Wednesday ideas.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: SAVING TIME IN THE KITCHEN

Making your home sing Mondays

Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday meme! Every day you are doing something to make your house into a home for yourself and your family (if you have one). My point with each Monday post is, what are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing?

It can be an attitude or an action. Motivation, our attitude, baking, encouraging our husband or children (if we have either one), organization, cleaning, saving money....the opportunities are endless.

This week I want to work on making my life a little easier in the kitchen. So I plan on hiring a cook. Or maybe I will just order out every day. Obviously I'm kidding (sort of.....).

Seriously, this week I have several things I want to do in order to save myself time in the kitchen.

I have never done that OAMC (Once A Month Cooking) thing, but I do like to make a few meals and stick them in the freezer for when I need something quick. However, we have eaten them all.

So this week, when I am making dinner, I want to make a couple of extra meals and pop them in the freezer. That way, I will have dinner that night, but also some extra for the freezer. I like doing it this way because you don't have to devote an entire day to cooking. You just do it while you're preparing your evening meal.

I also want to take a couple of pounds of ground turkey and brown them, then toss 'em in the freezer. That way, I can have it already browned and it will save me a step later when I'm making tacos or something. The meal prep will go much faster if I don't have to brown the meat first.

Another thing I want to do is cook some chicken and then pop it in the freezer. Then I can pull them out later when I have a casserole recipe that calls for cooked chicken. I don't know how many times I want to make a chicken casserole or something only to look at the clock, and realize I don't have enough time to prepare the recipe.

This leads me to the next thing, which is meal planning. I need to get back to that again. Meal planning saves time, saves money, and saves stress! When you know what you are making for dinner, you've already made sure that you have the ingredients on hand, and you have time to prepare it.

I also bought a bunch of green peppers on sale and I plan on cutting them up and freezing them. Then I can pull them out later for fajitas or other recipes instead of buying them at a higher price. I already have a big bag of diced onions in the freezer, and this will save me time (and tears) later.

My recipe file is a mess. Really, you should see it! So, one of the things I want to do this week is to sort through it and get it organized. That will save time when I am looking for a particular recipe.

So, this is how I am going to make my home sing this week, or make my kitchen sing anyway!

What are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing? Please go here for instructions and/or ideas and come back here to link up to join us today! Please do not put your own Making Your Home Sing Monday Linky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post. Also, please don't forgot to leave me a comment!

Friday, October 9, 2009

A DAY IN THE LIFE OF A SIDETRACKED BLOGGER

 
This morning I overslept. Everybody who's anybody knows that oversleeping is an awesome way to start your day. Especially if you homeschool. It always makes you feel so good to know that you are beginning your day already behind. Doesn't everybody?

Next, I forgot that I homeschool. My hubby has Fridays off, and has for a long time. See, I know that. Except that today I forgot it was Friday and thought it was Saturday, so I forgot it was a homeschool day until later.

Then I couldn't decide what to have for breakfast. I didn't know if I should have cold cereal or warm oatmeal. So I compromised and had a pretzel instead.

At some point I found myself in the sunroom watching a movie. Then my stomach alerted me that it needed something wonderful to eat, so I wandered into the kitchen.

The next thing I knew I was holding a toothpick and was micro-managing the gunk that somehow attaches itself between the tile counter and the stove. Yes, it was do or die time and I found myself cleaning madly with a toothpick. You will be happy to know that I threw it away afterwards and did not put it back in the holder.

Before I knew it I was taking the recycling out. After all, you can't clean out the gunk on the counter next to the stove without removing the recycling. Even a child knows that.

A few minutes later found me with my head in the freezer of the refrigerator, agonizing over what to toss and what to keep.

My husband especially loved it as he was trying to fix something on the computer and I kept interrupting him with earth shaking questions such as "Does this look bad to you?" or "Do you care if I toss this?"

After about the 2,000 time I interrupted him, he finally said "Look, honey. I don't care. Toss what you want."

How come he never says that when it comes to his stuff that he's keeping around here? Now I know, all I have to do is put it in the freezer and he'll let me toss it. So if you ever look in our freezer and find an old worn out pair of jeans or a VCR in there, you'll know why.

Next I found myself opening the freezer door about a million times, basking in the joy of it's beauty and letting all the cold air out.

After that I was suddenly seized by an overwhelming urge to wipe down the top two shelves of the fridge. After all, two shelves are better than no shelves, and I can do the rest later. Because you know that I won't forget or get sidetracked or anything.

Then I decided I needed to wash my hair, because it's getting later and later and it's not getting any cleaner. So I washed my hair and remembered that I am almost out of shampoo. I squeezed the remains out and made a mental note to buy some more.

My memory is so good, you know, it's not like I need to write it down so that I don't.......ummm....sorry, what was I saying?

After I washed my hair I grabbed some banana bread from the freezer because I wanted a frosty and I don't have a Wendy's in my freezer. Then I buttered my banana bread, took a bite, and somehow managed to get butter in my newly washed hair. Because that's how I roll. That's how I banana bread too.




Then I found myself taking pictures of myself with the camera just because I could.

And because I always love to post unflattering pictures of myself with no makeup on and butter in my hair.

Doesn't everybody?



What picture would be complete without the requisite up-the-nose shot?



And that, my friends, has been my very productive day so far. I can hardly wait to see what's next.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

SOMETIMES I WONDER WHAT MY APPLIANCES THINK OF ME

Sometimes I wonder what my appliances (and household objects) think of me.

I mean, as I scrape the plates and practically wash them before I put them in the dishwasher, I wonder if my dishwasher is thinking "Hel-lo! Don't you trust me to do the job well enough? Have you no faith? You don't think much of me, do you?"

When I get my laundry going in the washing machine I imagine it is thinking "Now why did you just do that? You know that you are going to forget you did it and you're just going to have to run it through all over again. Why don't you wait until you aren't as busy?"

My stove says "Seriously. Seriously? Do you expect me to do miracles?????? Do you expect that you can put a little bit of this in here and a little bit of that and I am supposed to come up with a full course meal with little or no notice? Seriously?

As I put my leftovers in the fridge I know my fridge is thinking "There you go again. Putting that in here to relieve yourself of any guilt should you forget to eat it. You put it in here, and then when it goes bad, you don't feel any guilt about tossing it. You never think about how I might feel. You never ask yourself how it affects me at all......"

I know my t.v. is thinking "You're the one that wanted to watch this show, so why are you yelling at me? If you don't like what's happening, turn it off. Don't sit there and yell at me, I didn't select the channel."

My phone is probably saying "Hello? Is anybody home? I know you're there, I can hear you breathing. Please answer me on the first ring. Please don't make me wait. You have no idea what it feels like to ring and ring and ring, while you all sit there and wonder where everybody else is and wonder if anybody is going to answer the phone."

My thermostat is probably saying "Won't you please make up your mind? First it's to hot, then it's to cold. Won't you please pick a temperature you can live with and just leave me alone?"

Like I said, sometimes I wonder what my appliances think of me.............

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

"WHAAAAAAAT?"

See this toy? If you look carefully you will notice that it is covered with dog hair.

This is why. Our beagle, Max, loves this toy. They're best buds. Many times when we leave the house we come home to find Max on his bed, with the toy sitting next to him. Max just likes to have it around, I guess. He doesn't chew on it.

Which is good, because Max doesn't always make wise culinary choices. Sometimes he walks around with it in his mouth. He has issues.

The problem? Four pounds of lean, mean, stealing machine. Kenzie loves to take our socks (note picture) and also loves to take the toy from Max. Sibling rivalry, don't you love it? "Haha, I win!"

I wish you could hear the sound effects as Max wanders through the house whining and Kenzie chases after him barking. It's enough to give you a headache.

"You did NOT just take it from me you pint sized diva. Ha, take that. I got it back!"

"Oh yeah? Think again, buddy."

Max attempts to hide and look pathetic, playing the sympathy card.

Apparently, some dogs could care less. Not only has she taken his toy, she has taken over his bed too. I think Max wishes he were an only "child" again. Kenzie doesn't care. She's cute and she knows it, but cute will only get you so far in life.

However, diligence is often rewarded and in this instance, Max gives up. Peace once again reigns in the household.


"Whaaaaaaat?"

Sunday, October 4, 2009

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: STOP MAKING EXCUSES!

Making your home sing Mondays


Welcome to the Making Your Home Sing Monday meme! Every day you are doing something to make your house into a home for yourself and your family (if you have one). My point with each Monday post is, what are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing?

It can be an attitude or an action. Motivation, our attitude, baking, encouraging our husband or children (if we have either one), organization, cleaning, saving money....the opportunities are endless.

This is really long, sorry. I was going to do two posts originally but just combined it all in one as it was easier for the meme.

Do you ever wonder why some people can get more done in a day than you do? Do you ever wonder how some moms can have more children than you have, and yet their homes are more organized than yours, and they manage their time better?

Or are you one of those more organized moms who is wondering why your stay-at-home friend (with no kids) just can't seem to get a shower in or get out of her pajamas before 4:00 p.m., if at all?

Do you ever make excuses as to why you can't do something or didn't get around to it? Do you ever find yourself saying "Well, I meant to do that today, but something came up" or "I was hoping to get around to it but I just ran out of time."

Do you ever find yourself feeling the need to justify to yourself (or someone else) why you didn't get to the laundry, or why you didn't get to the grocery store today, or why you didn't clean the house that day?

Do you ever find that sometimes you can't really explain what you were doing all day, because you don't really know? Does it ever seem like your day just slips through your fingers somehow? Do you ever feel like all you did was "put out fires" all day?

When we are working outside the home, we usually have an idea of our schedule. We know when we start work and when we end. We have an idea of what they expect from us, what the boundaries are, and what the job responsibilities are. The work may take all day but we don't take all day to begin our work; we can't, we have a deadline. We don't have the luxury of going into work and spending a few hours "waking up" before we get to work.

We are able to get alot of things done during that time because we are focused and not easily distracted by other things. We know the job expected of us and we know we can't sit back and read a magazine (well, not usually anyway), or get involved in a t.v. show or have long personal conversations on the phone.

We also usually have a set amount of time for lunch, and lunch doesn't usually go on for two or three hours. Those of us who are not good time managers can still have success because somebody else manages our time for us!

If a mom does not have any kind of a schedule or plan for her day (go here to read about how to make one), she will often find that her day just disappears. At the end of the day she can feel frustrated because she feels like she didn't get anything done. She often may wonder where her time goes.

Without a plan or a schedule, without considering our responsibilities at home, we often find ourselves at the mercy of the person with the loudest voice. It becomes tyranny of the urgent. Whatever the major "crisis" is that day will get the most attention, even if it's not all that important.

So often we may find ourselves putting large amounts of time into things that aren't very important (or is someone else's priority), while the important things, such as meals, laundry, or dishes, do not get done.

Another problem is we may find ourselves spending to much time blogging (*gasp!*, oh no, she did not just write that!!!!!), watching t.v., reading, or any other enjoyable thing. With noone around to set limits for us, we may sit down "just for a minute" and pretty soon an hour goes by, maybe more.

If we are playing to much, we need to stop making excuses for not getting stuff done and start getting stuff done! Stop making excuses for our lack of time and start managing our time! Let's stop blaming things for our failure to manage our time well. After all, whose fault is it if I spend to much time on the phone, blogging or on facebook. Is it the computer's fault or mine?

This last week I found myself making excuses (to myself) as to why I didn't get something done. I knew I had time to do it, I just chose to use my time unwisely in order to do something else. Something that was a lot more fun than laundry!

It's time to stop making excuses and accept responsibility for our choices. It's time to admit when we know we are out of balance. Ever so often it's good to take a look at our day and see if we are spending to much time having fun, and not enough time on our responsibilities....or, for some, we need to see if we are working to hard and not relaxing enough!

This week, I encourage you to make a list of your responsibilities at home. Sit down and write down what you are responsible for (don't faint), and what you feel that the Lord has called you to do that week in and around your home.

Then prayerfully bring your list and your day before the Lord each morning in prayer. Ask Him to help you get your priorities in balance. Ask Him to order your day.

Then remember that we can still have fun and take joy in our homemaking. We don't have to be a household "drudge." We just need to keep our priorities straight and be thankful that we can serve the Lord by caring for our families. So this week I need to prayerfully reexamine my priorities and guard my time more carefully! Otherwise, it will keep slipping away.

What are you doing or going to do today to make your home sing? Please go here for instructions and/or ideas and come back here to link up to join us today! Please do not put your own Making Your Home Sing Monday Linky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post. Also, please don't forgot to leave me a comment!

Friday, October 2, 2009

COOKING WITH MOM'S THE WORD: THE BREAD HAS LANDED



Welcome to another episode of Cooking With Mom's The Word! Glad to have you back.

I did it! I finally put me out of your misery! That's right. I stopped saying "I want to bake my own bread" and actually did it. Yes, ma'am (and sirs)!

I have a bread maker but have a little bit of Laura Ingalls Wilder in me and really felt like I wanted to do it myself. Just so I could have bragging rights.

First I found a recipe that I liked, made my bread (from scratch, kneading and all) and wrote this post. Then I googled the word "recipe" because it just didn't look right, regardless of what spell-checker said.

While making my own bread I learned a few things about myself:

1. I have an apron for a reason.

2. An apron will do me no good sitting in the drawer.

3. If I am not going to wear an apron I should not wear a nice shirt.

4. Flour is not meant to be worn and it really does nothing for my skin tone.

5. When I bake I will use practically every dish in the kitchen, just like my father did.

6. When it's time for clean up, I will be the one doing the cleanup, just like my mother did (while my father recovered from his morning of strenuous bread making).

7. Whenever I am baking I suddenly become very popular, but very lonely. The phone rings, decisions need to be made, my mother needs me to do something for her, my son has a question, the dog needs to go out, and apparently nobody can do it but me.

8. When I am baking, everybody disappears. I can't decide if I should be insulted or grateful.

9. The smell of baking bread should be bottled. I'd buy it!

10. A loaf of bread is a beautiful thing.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

THE TATTLETALE AND THE TOMBOY

I grew up with several brothers and sisters. I used to follow them around and generally be annoying, I am sure. I remember hearing the common refrain "Don't lose your sister" as my siblings went charging out the door and I went tearing after them.

I am sure they were thrilled to have me along. Please note the sarcasm. Also please note the sheer terror of what might happen if they did lose their sister. Still, my mom sent me along with them with the instructions for them not to lose me. Such faith.

Even now when I go out with them, I still have to smile at that "don't lose your sister" thought. Just once I'd like to call my mom and mournfully say "They lost me!" but it's never happened. I stick like glue, baby.

Do you know why I think my mom sent me along? Do the words "tattle-tale" mean anything to you? I tell ya, the woman was a visionary.

Who was it that tattled when her brother drove to fast in the car? That would be moi. Who told when we almost got in a car accident from taking the curve to fast? Me again. Who squealed when one brother accidentally hit another brother? *slowly raises hand* Who squealed on her sissy? You guessed it. *cough*ME*cough* I was about as much fun as a toothache. Maybe even not as much fun.

I followed them as they did all that yucky, messy "boy" stuff and I was right in there with them. We climbed hills and trees, played in ditches, rolled down grassy hills 'til we were dizzy, played football, baseball, soccer, roller skated and skateboarded. That was me. The tattletale and the tomboy.

So why did my mom put me in a dress? Was it just wishful thinking? And why did she keep putting me in a dress, knowing that I was going to somehow get it all torn up on the wheel of the skateboard or caught on a tree branch?

My mom sewed the rips in those dresses up day after day after day. She even made matching mommy and me dresses, which I loved. However, one of us did not hold up our end of the bargain and got their dress messy and tore it. I won't tell you who. Feel free to discuss it amongst yourselves. I'll wait.

Finally, I think she just gave up on the dresses and put me in pants. But what can you expect when most of my playmates were rough and tumble boys?

But I'm over it now. Excuse me while I go put a bandaid on my skinned knee.