Sunday, May 30, 2010

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: SUMMER CLEANING FRENZY REVISITED

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.

One year ago I did a meme post talking about how I always have big, big, big plans for summer. That hasn't changed. I always have something that needs doing and I think "This will be a perfect summer project!"

Then summer comes, and goes, and I think "Where did the time go?" and I sometimes feel like I didn't get most of the things accomplished that I wanted to.

That's partially because the "lazy" days of summer call to me. Sunny days, the beautiful, warm sandy beach, a cold pop (or water!), a good book and a comfy spot all call to me. This is also because our family gets very busy with summer activities and things, just as yours does.

Last year I decided to do a Summer Cleaning Frenzy and invited you all to join me. This year I'll be doing my own little version of a cleaning frenzy. Why don't you join me? Just pick a room of the week that you want to focus on, and do a blog post about it. That will give you some accountability, right?

After all, aren't you more likely to do something if you tell someone about it? Won't you be more motivated to work on a task if you know someone is rooting for you, or looking forward to hearing how it went? Wouldn't you rather go into Fall with a neat and orderly home?

So which room would you start with, hmmmm? Your Room of Doom? You know that room. The one room that you dread walking into or by, because you know it really needs a good cleaning. The room you have "nightmares" about, haha!

The entry hall because that's the room everyone first sees when they come into your home? The front porch because that's what people see even before they make it inside?

What does your front porch say about you? What does your yard say? You don't even want to know what my weeds garden says about me!

Which room? The bathroom because it gets messy fast? The master bedroom because you want it to be peaceful and restful instead of a bunch of clutter and disorder calling out to you?

Perhaps it's not just cleaning you want to do. Perhaps you have a room you want to paint, or some furniture you'd like to move around. Do you have some closets that need decluttering?

What is it that you need to do? Let's do it and feel good about it afterward. A toothache hurts like crazy and getting it fixed isn't fun, but isn't it better to get it taken care of rather than living with the pain? What room is the "toothache" in your house?

For this next week I will be working on my front porch and my entry hall. It may seem like a huge list, but it's really not as bad as it looks, especially if you do a little each day. It doesn't take long to sweep cobwebs or wash the glass in a door. Going room by room and getting things done is how I'll be making my home sing this summer, beginning this week.

FRONT PORCH

Toss dead plants/weed

Sweep porch

Sweep cobwebs from eaves

Wash glass in door

Wash outside of windows

ENTRY & HALLWAY

Shake rug and/or wash if haven't washed it already

Sweep and mop floor

Vacuum stairs

Dust furniture, decorations, pictures, and baseboards

Clean glass in picture frames and mirrors

Wipe down railing, banisters or walls as needed

Clean light fixtures and wash globes

Wipe down switch plates

Wash table cover

Organize coat closet

Organize linen hall closet

Organize shoe basket

Replace light bulbs as needed

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 MckLinky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post. Also, please don't forgot to leave me a comment!

Thursday, May 27, 2010

THE MATERNITY CLOTHES BLUES

Do you remember the day you gave away your maternity clothes? (Provided you are finished with them, of course)., I gave mine away years ago, but I cried when I did it. Yes I did. I donated them to the church to give away to those in need. Then I ran into the church bathroom and cried. Then several women followed me in to see what I was crying about.

You know what I learned? Everybody understands those tears if they are a mom (and maybe even if they're not). They really do. It doesn't matter if they still have babies in their arms, or six foot tall grandchildren. They get it.

They either hug their babies a little tighter, because they know it will be them someday, or they remember the day they gave their maternity clothes away. Some gave their clothes away with glee, I'll admit, but I wonder if it still gave their heartstrings a bit of a tug.

I remember all the years we struggled with infertility. And I mean years. Every month that my cycle started it felt like a death. The death of a dream. The death of ever hoping to have a baby, or another baby.

I remember losing our third child to a miscarriage when I was four months along. I was devastated because we had tried for five years to have that baby, and I just knew that I would most likely never be able to have another baby. And we never did.

For some reason, giving your maternity clothes away just seems so final. It's like saying goodbye to your child bearing years.

Some can't wait to say goodbye to those years, lol! It doesn't mean that they want to see their babies grow up, though, it just means they're done with having babies.

As we raise our children, there are so many things to say goodbye too. The last bottle, the last binky, the last favorite Blankie, make-believe, the last tooth.

But there are so many firsts to look forward to and to embrace! The first time they say "mama." The first time they crawl, walk, run! The first time they go to school, learn to read, bring you a bouquet of flowers, get a part in the play or their first piano recital.

The first time they make their bed all by themselves, wash their hair all by themselves, get dressed all by themselves. Get on a sports team or dance team, score a goal or get a "starring" role in a play, get an "A" on a paper. Make a speech, sing a solo, get their driver's permit, get their driver's license, graduate from high school, go to college.

To be a mom is to raise those precious children up to leave you. But what a privilege! What a blessing!

So ladies, have you sung the maternity clothes blues yet?

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

"It's my onion and I'll cry if I want to........" If you want to read the rest of this post, please pop over here to the Five Mom's blog today. It's my turn to blog!


Sunday, May 23, 2010

MAKING YOUR HOME SING MONDAY: Managing Our Homes

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.

We are managers of our homes. If you were given a review based on how you managed your home, would you pass with flying colors? Would you be put on probation? Or would you be fired? I have times where, if I were judged based on how I managed my home that week, I am pretty sure that I would be fired.

Do you have trouble sometimes, like me? Let's make a list of our priorities. Then make a list of the main activities that take up our time. Do our activities reflect our priorities? If the Lord is a high priority, do our actions support that? Do our activities support our love for our husbands, our children and our home?

Are we spending way to much time on the wrong priorities? Are we out of balance?

If we truly desire to place our homes and family first, are we then constantly putting them second? Is laundry always taking second place to blogging? Is dinner always an afterthought? Is cleaning second to the t.v. program? Do we say one thing and yet do another? Do our actions match our words?

One of the difficult things about being at home is learning to manage our time. I don't know about you, but I can easily be tempted by a phone call to go do something fun. After all, the laundry will still be waiting for me when I get back, right? I deserve to get out, right? But to much playtime and I have a Mt. Never-Rest of laundry that is overwhelming!

Time management is learning to manage our schedule, not letting our schedule manage us. It's learning when to say "no" to the t.v., and the clothes shopping trips, and the lunches out when we need to, and saying "yes" to the laundry, and the cleaning, and the dinner preparations.

My husband doesn't get up every morning and decide whether or not to go to work that day. He just goes. He doesn't get up and say "Well, I'd rather do this today instead." He doesn't do everything he wants to do that day and squeeze his job in when and if he can.

He doesn't sleep in if he feels like it. He goes to work. He is consistent. That's because he looks upon his work as his job, his responsibility, a way to provide for his family. He is also fortunate in that he loves his job.

Do you love your job of making a home for yourself and your family? Do you love it? Do you have a smile on your face as you go about your business, or a permanent frown? Are you singing or complaining?

It's not easy to put someone else's needs before your own. It's not easy to give up on something fun in order to do something that needs doing. But daily, we are called to do that.

We are managers of our homes. What kind of manager do we want to be? A good manager or a poor manager? Do we want to send our families out into the world with full stomachs, clean clothes, matching shoes, a whispered prayer and a smile on their face? Or do we want to rush them out the door with an empty stomach, yesterday's clothes, and the memory of our growling "Hurry up or you'll be late!!!!" in their ear?

We can manage our homes, or let our homes manage us. Who's in charge here anyway? Let's take charge of our homes and make them sing!

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 MckLinky on your blog. As always, please don't forget to link to this post. Also, please don't forgot to leave me a comment!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

IT'S 5:00 PM, DO YOU KNOW WHERE YOUR DINNER IS?


Today is my day to blog at The Five Mom's.

It's 5:00 pm. Do you know where your dinner is?????? Let me just say a word to the wise: don't ever go to the grocery store at 5:00 p.m. in the evening. Don't!

Please go here to read the rest of this post.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: ARE YOU LAZY WITH YOUR APPEARANCE?

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.

Today I was talking about makeup with a friend at church. She was explaining why she doesn't wear makeup.

I was explaining that I wear makeup on Sundays or sometimes if I go out to dinner, but that I don't usually wear makeup during the week.

Here is my "excuse" why. Below is a picture of me without makeup on.



Yup, here I am with no makeup. Please ignore the mess on the counter. Apparently the time saved by not putting on makeup is not used to clean off the kitchen counter.


Here is a picture of me with makeup. Wow, huge difference, huh? Ummmmm.....not!

However, I do like wearing makeup because I feel that it makes my eyes stand out and "brightens" my face up a bit. But do I wear it every day?

Nope.

When did this start? I'm not really sure but I think it started when I began wearing my glasses a lot more.

When I wore contacts I pretty much always wore makeup, but once my contacts died and I didn't replace them, I began wearing makeup less and less.

I have a hubby that doesn't really care if I wear makeup or not. So I've been lazy and not worn it when I am "at home."

Wearing makeup or not wearing it isn't the issue. The issue is that sometimes we moms allow ourselves to get lazy in our appearance. I know that I have.

We tend to put on big sloppy t-shirts and sweatshirts to hide the extra pounds that our loving babies have added to us. We tend to keep the pounds even when our babies are 17, ahem. We tend to stop wearing perfume, because it sort of interferes with the smell of baby spitup.

We even, on occasion, tend to stay in our pajamas for all day sometimes, because after all, we're just going to get right back in them again!

We tend to not fix ourselves up for our husbands anymore. Gone are the days of putting on makeup, or if we never wore makeup then fixing our hair, or carefully selecting our clothes, etc.

We tend to not "fix ourselves up" anymore unless we're going out.

I don't believe that our outward beauty should overshadow our inward beauty. But, we should definitely try to make ourselves look pleasing and attractive for our husbands, our children, and ourselves.

If we've become lazy, do we ever think about how we must look to others when we go out? What example are we setting for our children? What are we saying about how we feel about ourselves? Do we look as if we care about our appearance? What do our clothes, our hair, our appearance say about us? Do we look as if we've given up or just don't care?

As I said, clearly concern for the outward appearance can be taken to the extreme. But I see nothing wrong with trying to take care of ourselves, and changing into a nice shirt and fixing ourselves up so that we don't look as if we just woke up. Would you want to come home to that night after night?

If we fix ourselves up for total strangers when we go out, but we don't do it for the ones we love the most at home, what is that saying?

This week I encourage you to make your home sing by evaluating your appearance, and asking whether you have allowed yourself to get a little lazy lately, whether it's in the clothes you wear (saving your "good" clothes for going out and wearing your old, sloppy ones at home) or not fixing your hair or makeup (if you wear it).

Let's welcome our husbands and children tomorrow morning (or ourselves if we're single) with a beauty that comes from within and is enhanced from without. With or without makeup, let's fix ourselves up for those we love, because surely they deserve to see us at our best. If we fix ourselves up for others, shouldn't they fix ourselves up for them? Shouldn't we deserve to feel good about ourselves too?

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 MckLinky 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, May 14, 2010

MOOOOOOVE ALONG PLEASE


I am linking up with my friend Kim for Friday Funnies today!

I am thinking of buying both of my boys their own cow for Christmas.


Don't laugh.

What is it with teenage boys and milk?

Of course, my oldest is no longer a teen, technically. But he's closer to being a teen than I am.

No need to be rude, people.........stop laughing and mumbling under your breath.

Which reminds me, how do you mumble under your breath? I mean, you can't get under your breath. You just can't. How would you get under your breath?

You can get under your nose in that your mouth is under your nose. So if you're talking out of your mouth, and breathing in through your nose then are you mumbling under your breath?

Does anyone else have a headache and feel like their brain is bleeding?

Back to the cow. Please. Mooooo......

Please go here for more fun!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

QUICK AND EASY FURNITURE REPAIR TIP

Kristen of We Are That Family is hosting Works-For-Me-Wednesday again!

So here's a sneaky little furniture repair tip for you that even a three year old could do. Have you ever had a piece of furniture that's made of particle board? Have you ever got a scratch or a chip in it?

Recently, I was walking in the family room and noticed that someone had left a dvd label stuck to the top of a cabinet. Without thinking, I pulled it off and look what came off with it!


Isn't that attractive? Well, I quickly began my repair..........


....and soon it looked like this. Not perfect on a close up inspection but it's a lot better than it was.



Here it is further away. Can't really see it unless you're looking for it, can you?


Here is another view. It's a lot harder to see now, and if you were walking by it, you probably wouldn't even have noticed it. Would you like to know what I used to repair it?





Yup. That's right. I used a crayon. All I did was take the crayon and color in the scratches.

At first, I didn't quite match the color close enough, and if you look at the pictures, you can probably see where I started coloring with the wrong color. I didn't care enough to color over it.

I'm pretty sure you can buy something at a hardware store to fix up the scratches that will do a better job, but this works for me and I didn't have to spend any money as I already had it on hand. Plus it was quick, easy and painless!

Please go here for more Works For Me Wednesday!

THE ART OF BAGGING

Do you like packing your own grocery bags or do you despise it? Today I am sharing with you about the fun I have when I have to pack my own grocery bags at the store. It's a sickness, really.

How fast can I load a bag? Can I beat the other person loading their bags across from me? Who will win get their bags packed first? The fun part is winning a race that they don't even know they're in!

How many items can I cram into one bag? Yeah, you heard me. I try to cram as many things into the bag as I can. I consider it a special challenge and a personal affront to my dignity if I only get a few things in.


I also prefer to use only one bag per cramming. Anybody can use two bags at a time instead of one. The art is to use one bag at a time and cram away. Can I put 50 pounds of canned goods into a single plastic bag and NOT have it rip or break?.................

Please pop over here to read the rest of this, as it's my day to blog at Five Mom's And A Blog!



Sunday, May 9, 2010

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: BE INTENTIONAL

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.

The nice thing about Mother's Day is that it's intentional. It's a day set aside in which we honor our own mothers and our children honor us.....or at least be nicer to us, haha!

My purpose for this meme is to be intentional. It is so easy to go about your day being busy cooking, cleaning, diapering, etc., and be on auto-pilot. I mean seriously, how many of us could practically fold laundry in our sleep? Note I said "practically." Wouldn't it be nice if we could do laundry in our sleep?

When you tuck your children in bed for the night, are you there in the moment? Are you there listening to what they're saying? Are you there when they kiss you goodnight, or are you thinking about what you're going to do now that they're finally in bed?

Are you paying attention when your husband tells you how his day went, or are you thinking "I can top that, dude!?" Are you listening to him or just to busy always thinking about what you're going to say next?

I know that I am guilty of only half-listening sometimes. I am guilty of thinking about what I have to do next, or wondering if I should do this or that now or later.

I am guilty of cooking, cleaning, and doing all the wife and mom things we have to do, without being intentional about them. I am guilty of doing them to get them done, but not really doing them to bless my family.

I am guilty of doing them to bless myself and get them over with. Not that there is anything wrong with wanting to be done with something, except that I am not being intentional when I am thinking about it as a chore. I am not thinking about how I can bless my family.

How can we bless our families when we're cooking? How about trying a new recipe, or making a favorite meal, or putting candles out on the table, or google how to fold the napkins in a fun way.

How can we bless them when we're doing laundry? How about mending or ironing a favorite shirt, or putting their clothes away for them, instead of waiting for them to do it.

How can we bless them when we're cleaning? How about making their bed for them and putting a sweet note on their pillow? How about putting their shoes away, or their backpacks away and do it with a smile and an "I love you!" instead of a frown.

How can we bless our families while we're going about the "business" of being a mom? Be intentional. Look for opportunities to bless them. Look for ways to be in the moment.

Turn off the t.v. or "mute" it when your husband or children comes into the room to say something to say to you. Give them your full attention. Does your family feel like they have to compete with the t.v. (or the computer) for your attention? Do you have one eye on them and one on the t.v. when they're talking to you?

As the mother of a teenager I can tell you that you will miss many important conversations if you don't mute the t.v., or if you don't turn away from the computer. Teenagers will not tell you the important things that they NEED to tell you, if they feel that you aren't really listening to them. There are times when they need to talk and share what's on their hearts, but they won't if they feel like your interest is elsewhere. Many a light, simple talk turned into a deeper, important conversation because a mom was listening.

Be intentional. Be there in the moment. Don't make them compete for your attention. This will make them smile and make your home sing this week!

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 MckLinky 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, May 7, 2010

COOKING WITH MOM'S THE WORD: Easy Beef & Rice

Welcome to another Cooking With Mom's The Word! Today we're making Easy Beef and Rice. Are you ready? Let's get cooking!

Now, you know that I can't just do a straight recipe without commenting. Rarely am I able to cook without having something funny or strange happen (well, funny to me anyway).

Here is a list of ingredients you will need:

1 pound ground beef (or ground turkey)
3 tablespoons chopped onion
1 cup instant rice (uncooked)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup water
1 can (10 3/4 oz.) condensed cream of celery soup, do not dilute
1 can (10 3/4 oz.) condensed cream of chicken soup, do not dilute



Ask your son to get a pound of ground beef out of the freezer. Confuse him because you almost never cook with ground beef, and what you really want is ground turkey. Brown the ground turkey on the stove. Well, not on the stove. In a pan on the stove......

Or, if you wish, crumble the beef/turkey into an ungreased 2 quart microwave safe dish. Cover and microwave on high for 5 minutes or until no longer pink, then drain.

Try and catch your husband before he leaves work and tell him that dinner is running late tonight. When husband says that's fine since he wanted to work late anyway, tell him dinner will be ready in about an hour.

Look at your recipe and realize you were looking at the wrong recipe. Call hubby back and tell him dinner will be ready in about fifteen minutes. This will keep him guessing.



Get your frozen chopped onions out of the freezer. Wonder why you thought it was so smart to freeze them all in a clump like that. Wonder why you didn't flash freeze them instead. Wonder if you will cut yourself using a knife to break them up. Wonder if perhaps chopping onions and bawling your eyes out would be so bad after all.


Open your cupboard and look for the box of Instant Rice. I repeat. Look for the box of Instant Rice. Wonder how "instant" it can be when it takes you 45 minutes to find it. Blame the mess on your husband and sons who love to buy their own snacks and then have the nerve to put them in your kitchen cupboards. Conveniently forget any snacks that you may have added.

Realize that you have not been straightening out your pantry cupboard like you're supposed to every Tuesday. Hang your head in shame and then take a picture for your blog. Maybe someone will feel sorry for you. Either that or you will horrify all your bloggy friends and no one will come back to visit you ever again. Observe a moment of sadness over that thought.

Bend over and pick up the potato chips that fell on the floor. While you're bending down make sure the box of Honey Smacks falls on your head. Think that Honey Smacks is a very appropriate name right about now.


Put the browned ground beef (or ground turkey) in a 2 quart microwave safe dish. Add the three tablespoons of onions. Look at it and see if it looks like a picture of something, kind of like the clouds do sometimes. Decide that it looks like ground turkey and onions.



Rinse off the top of the soup cans, because you never know what kind of bugs (or other things) are crawling around in the warehouse that they originated from. Have your family think you're nuts for doing this over the years but keep doing it. After all, you don't know where it's been.

Have your son open the cans and pour the undiluted soup on top of the ground meat and onions, so that you can take a picture for your blog. Add the cup of water.

Once again think about how you need to replace the wallpaper border as it's dated. Be glad you're not making a chicken dish, considering the rooster and hen knicknacks are sitting there on the counter, staring at you. Wish your toaster would fit somewhere other than on your counter.


While you're taking a picture for your blog, knock the dog's water dish with your foot. Grab a towel and toss it on the floor to add a little color to your blog. Wonder again why you always put the dog's dishes in that particular spot.


Add the cup of uncooked instant rice. Have your son laughingly tell you it looks gross and tell him he hasn't seen anything yet.



Add 1/2 tsp. of salt and 1/4 tsp. of pepper. Be so focused on getting pictures and thinking about your blog that you almost dip into the salt again, instead of into the pepper.



Stir everything together and take a picture for your blog and tell your son "Now it's really disgusting looking!" Have your son agree, and listen to him comment that he's glad he knows how good it tastes, because otherwise he wouldn't want to eat it.

Then cover and put it in the microwave on high for 15 minutes (or until rice is tender). Let stand for five minutes before serving. This makes four servings (or more, it depends on serving size)


Then sit there and wonder if you should fold the laundry or eat chocolate covered pretzels. Hmmmm, maybe you should go and straighten up your pantry first...

Thursday, May 6, 2010

GIVEAWAY AND CHORE TRAINING POST

My kid's chore training guest post that I mentioned yesterday is now up on Hannah's blog! So please pop over here if you'd like to read it.

Pop over here to read more about the 1/2 day assessment with Hannah and the Heating and Air Conditioning giveaway if you haven't entered yet!

Have a great day! I'm off and running...........

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

CHORE TRAINING KIDS & A GIVEAWAY

Recently I was contacted by Hannah Keeley. At first I thought it was a joke, because Hannah has her own t.v. show, Hannah Help Me! She has written books on motherhood, has seven children of her own, and been on the "The Today Show" and "The Rachael Ray Show" (among others). So for pete's sake, why would she be contacting me????

She asked me if I'd like to do a guest post on her website and in a flurry of emails back and forth I never once mentioned that I didn't believe any of this was real. I must admit I told my hubby that someone was playing a joke on me. The whole time I was dying to say "You're just pulling my leg, right?"



Turns out it's no joke. My blog has been honored to be one of several blogs selected to receive Hannah's Healthy Living Stamp of Approval, and today I am also doing a guest post about children's chore training on Hannah's website!

So this is exciting news for me, and now I have some exciting news for you! You are eligible to win a half-day home makeover assessment with Hannah, and also a new home comfort system (worth up to $15,000). This is sponsored by Hannah and American Standard Heating & Air Conditioning. Who couldn't use that? All you have to do is click here to enter. But don't forgot to come back and read about how to get your children involved in helping with chores.

When our children were little, my husband and I decided we wanted them to learn a work ethic. We wanted them to experience the satisfaction of a job well done. We wanted them to learn the joys of service. One of the ways we tried to instill these attitudes was through chore training. Here are some ideas to try.

Start 'em young! As toddlers, take their hand and help them put their toys away when they're done playing. At age three or four we began working with them on chores. This is such a lovely age as they want to imitate mommy and daddy and they are so eager to help.

Let them help. Is it quicker and easier for mom to do a chore herself than to train a young child to do it? Absolutely. But you have to think about the value of what you are trying to instill. We wanted our children to learn the value of a job well done, and to learn that we are all part of this family and we all work together to keep the home looking nice. It's not just mom's job, it's everyone's job......

If you'd like to read the rest of my post, please pop over here to Hannah's site.*

Check out the rest of her site as well, she has lots of great tips and ideas for busy moms! (Remember, she's a mom to seven so she is in the trenches with us!). Don't forget to click here and enter the giveaway.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

DIRECTIONS ARE FOR THE WEAK AT HEART


Tuesday is here and it's my turn to blog at the Five Mom's.

For some reason I have a mental block when it comes to some things. Like remembering why I went downstairs, following directions, trying to understand everything the doctor is saying to me, and listening to someone explain anything technical to me.

Directions are a problem. Please don't give me directions. Directions are for the weak at heart. I don't care if they are directions to your house, how to do something on the computer, or directions to the refrigerator. Please, spare me....
..........Please pop over here if you want to read more..........!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

MAKING YOUR HOME SING: FINISH STRONG

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.

Have you ever started out a project full of enthusiasm, energy and excitement, only to lose steam at the end? Have you ever started out the homeschool year, or a job or a ministry, and you are just so raring to go and full of positive things to say and do, and then as time goes on you get tired and you are just waiting for it all to end so you can go home and have some time for yourself?

Remember thinking about marriage and having children, and you were full of ideas about the kind of wife or mother you wanted to be? If you're single, remember all the plans you had of all the things you wanted to do and accomplish, or places you wanted to go when you grew up?

Then, you get busy in the do-ing, and suddenly being a wife or mom feels like work, or being single and living on your own isn't as fun as you thought it might be, it's work! Cooking, cleaning, laundry, diapers, driving them around......is this really what we signed up for?

Finish strong, my friends. This is when you need to buckle down and remember your dreams, and your goals, and why you said "yes" to being a wife and mom and "yes" to growing up and taking on responsibility.

This is when you stay strong to the end. These are the trenches, and they're tight, and uncomfortable sometimes, but they have moments of peace, and fun, and love and laughter that make them worth living in.

Don't give up now and just "phone it in" to your family. Don't give up and lose your enthusiasm for caring for your family. Don't just go through the motions. Be present!

I have a video of myself which I would post today if I knew how. It shows my youngest son, then about 18 months. In the video I am listening to my oldest son, and my youngest comes toddling down the hall, whining.

He starts fussing at me, and whining to be picked up, so I pick him up. However, in the video it shows me rolling my eyes as I pick him up. This makes my heart break.

Now, I will admit that I imagine he probably was fussy that day, and yes, I was probably tired. But do you have any idea how much I would love to be able to live that day over? To have him be a baby once again, and cuddly and needing his momma just for that day? He's taller than me now! Yes, I can hug him, but it's not like he wants to cuddle and snuggle on my lap.

There will be time for you again, some day. You will have all the time you want. But for now, stay the course and finish strong. Don't give up when the finish line is in sight. Yes, you're tired but you can do this!

So this week I am going to try and treasure these moments, for they will be gone all to soon. I can be thankful when I am doing laundry, or picking up my son's shoes yet AGAIN, instead of grumbling.

For very soon, they will be off on their own and I will be watching dvd's and wishing I'd lived in the moment and truly cherished it, instead of letting it pass me by while I was to busy complaining about shoes and pop cans left behind in the family room. Or because I was to busy with the "do-ing" that I didn't have time for the "be-ing."

Why should we wish for this time to hurry by? It'll be over all to soon, my friend. This week we can sing or grumble. What do you choose to do? Let's sing together and finish strong!

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