Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Work at Work and Home at Home

I have tried working towards this goal a couple of times in the past and it never seems to work out but this NEEDS to happen for me...and my family. I am so blessed to have the job I do - I never, never, never thought I would teach but I really love it! I love food and nutrition (and to talk) so getting a chance to talk about nutrition every day and getting paid for it is great! On a different note, I really, really, really love my family and when I am at home I want to do stuff with them and do things for myself like read a book, try new recipes, take my kids to the zoo, and on and on and on. What seems to happen...especially in the heart of the semester...is that I bring work home. I don't necessarily push the kids and hubs aside ALL the time to do work but staying up very late to accomplish everything makes for a very tired momma and then very little gets accomplished at work AND at home. So, new plan for Fall 2011...I will work at work and do home at home. So far, one week into the semester, it's going great (the grading hasn't started yet...). There is ALWAYS something that needs to be done for work so at home I have been tempted to work on work but simply put it on the to-do-list for the next day in the office. Then, I do something at home that I've wanted to do like pull out some stored toys for Ava, build a lego city with Jey, try a new DIY project and so far it has felt G-R-E-A-T. And at work, I've been super effecient working off of these to-do-lists that were created at home as things come to my mind. :-) I'm hoping I can keep this up! Any tips from you working moms out there would be much appreciated!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Cross Stitch it on a Pillow, Vol. 4

"For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord. "Plans to prosper you
and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." ~Jeremiah 29:11

This verse touched me for the first time when I was a sophmore in highschool and has been of utmost comfort to me ever since.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

This Homemade Stuff Has Gone Too Far!

You may have remembered me talking about my homeade laundry detergent, which is great by the way. I thought I would give homeade dishwashing soap a try...my first attempt did not go well. The second recipe seems to be working much better! Thanks to my bestie, Amber, for sharing!

1 cup of borax

1 cup of washing soda

6 packets of unsweetened lemonade flavored kool-aide

Mix all ingrediets together and use only 1 Tablespoon per dishwasher load.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Good-bye Summer, Hello School Year

My mom always told me that the real world didn't have summer vacation, spring break, 3 weeks off at Christmas, ect...but as it turns out, my real world does! And I am ever so greatful. I've had a fantastic summer with my kids; full of trips to White Water, swimming, Discover Center, movies, "Hot Donalds" as Jey calls McDonalds, among other fun things. This week is the first week of school so it's back to work for me but looking forward to cooler weather and fun fall activities with my kiddos! Here are some of our summer highlights!

Ava checks out the fireworks that Bubba picked out.

Daddy and Ava at the Duck Creek family picnic.

A fun family weekend in Branson for the Fourth of July!

Annual picnic at Paul Sloan's farm

This is the first year Jey is big enough to ride a "big boy" roller coaster. This is a picture of Jey and daddy riding Thunderation at Silver Dollar City.

A much needed summer rain...so of course we had to dance in it!

What would summer be without a trip to the Ozark Empire Fair?

Ava's first time doing the Duck Pond at the Fair.

The record breaking heat this summer called for a new slip-n-slide.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Say Y-Y-Y-Yes to V-V-V-VBS

One of my favorite summer time activities is Vacation Bible School. It's SO much work but SO worth it! It blesses me tremendously to see a group of people who love the Lord so much work together to make sure kids see and understand the love God has for them. Here are a couple of my favorites from this year's "Big Apple Adventure" Vacation Bible School at Glidewell.

This year, our mission team at church took on a project to help out with a Vacation Bible School with a Hispanic church here in town, Iglesia Cristiana Casa de Oracion. A group of us took on the craft rotation and had a great time. The people of this church blessed me so much. We had fun doing crafts, playing in recreation, and learning the "Big Apple Adventure" song in Spanish. Jeremiah even joined us a couple of nights for "EBV", although his new Spanish speaking friends intimidated him a little, he had a GREAT time!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Cross Stitch it on a Pillow, Vol. 3

"You're the most awesome-est mommy I ever had"

Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think someone would say this (or think this) about me. Parenting has to be one of the hardest, most rewarding things that I have ever experienced in my life. Not sure what I did to deserve my babies but I'm so glad they're mine. These words (from my son who is 4) motivate me to keep trying my hardest to be the best for him.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

A couple of weekends ago I had the privilege of keeping my niece Zeda while her momma and daddy spent a weekend away in Branson. Needless to say, it was a fun weekend! Zeda and Jeremiah have a relationship just like a brother and sister - they are super excited about each other and then once they are playing they bicker and fight over toys. But these two love each other that is for sure! One night at dinner, they decided...okay...JEREMIAH decided he wanted to wear pants on his head. So you know what happened next...Zeda decided she needed pants on her head as well. This is what they did, sat all the way through dinner with pants on their head. Gotta love it!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Cookin' with Kohlrabi

Okay, I know you are all probably so sick of reading about produce but I can't help it! Produce is my life these days - trying to keep up with my CSA!!! One of my favorite things about participating in the CSA is that I have brought home foods that I probably would never purchase otherwise, exposing my family to new and interesting foods. One of the foods that we have had A LOT of is kohlrabi, which is a type of German Cabbage. To me, it tastes a lot like cabbage with a hint of turnip flavor - very interesting. Because I have never purchased these, eaten these, or even seen these before we've tried a few things with them including roasting, kohlrabi soup thanks to my friend Amy (it's very similar to potato soup), and kohlrabi coleslaw thanks to my friend Foodie Rachel.

Have you ever tried kohlrabi? What is your favorite way to prepare it?

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Blessed with Basil

I wish, wish, wish, there was a way to upload smells because the smell of my kitchen would make you so jealous right now. But right now, in 2011, you will just have to look at this scrumptious picture of basil and take my word for the wonderful smell. We have gotten more basil than we know what to do with and I love it! I've used it in salads, made (and froze) pesto, spaghetti sauce, and tomato basil soup. If you have any other suggestions on what to do with this basil bounty I would love to hear it!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Cross Stitch it on a Pillow, Vol. 2


Kill em' with Kindness, Baby!

I have used this phrase so many times in my life in different situations. It's a phrase that my dad said to me one time when dealing with a less-than-pleasant teacher in high school. It's not that this teacher was mean to me, personally, just a little difficult to deal with and therefore very intimidating. I told my dad about my nervousness in approaching the teacher to ask for help and this is the advice he gave me. He said, "if you are nice and they are not then you really can't do anything else to help the situation and it's their problem." I remember that conversation and the light bulb that turned on in my mind. Ever since then, I've used this motto and it's amazing how a little kindness will go a LOOOOOONG way! Thanks, dad!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Cheaper than Couponing?

I have been wanting to try this out for awhile and I finally gathered all of the supplies to make my first batch of Homeade Laundry Detergent. You all know that I love finding good deals on laundry soap but my stash is running low and detergent coupons aren't that great. I found this recipe through one of my blogging friends, Foodie Rachel. I'm a little picking on my laundry soap but thought I would at least give it a shot. All of these indredients where cheaper than buying 1 jug of my normal laundry soap and the thing is I still have enough left over to probably make 2 or 3 more batches! Oh and did I mention that one recipe makes a 5-gallon bucket of laundry soap? Yep, I'm set for awhile. :-)

I highly recommend this recipe for homeade laundry soap....

Sunday, August 7, 2011

I did it!

Last fall I learned something new, something I have always wanted to do but just had this preconceived notion that it was too hard or too time consuming. I learned how to make jelly, jams, preserves, relishes, ect AND the whole canning technique. It turns out that it wasn't hard or really that time consuming and it is actually quite relaxing! Because my husband is a fantastic gift giver and knows just what I would love even before I know it, he gave me all sorts of canning gadget-ry. And thank you to Farmer Curtis Milsap, I have a ton of produce to can! :-) This was my first attempt at canning outside of supervision...and it turned out great! And with the amount of peaches I have been receiving from my fruit CSA share, I'm sure there will be more Peach Preserves in the near future.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Cross Stitch it on a Pillow, Vol. 1

Do you ever come across a phrase, sentence, Bible verse, words of wisdom, or simply words of advice from a friend and you want to remember it forever? I come across these types of words a lot; many of which I have written down, stuck on a post-it, written in a notepad, kept it in my mind, ect. I certainly cannot, nor would not, cross stitch them all on a pillow. In my attempt to "journal" (which happens to be on my New Year's list), I thought I would use this Blogspot to keep a collection of those "words" that I want to remember. Keep in mind that these posts are for me personally, but perhaps you will find encouragement in them as well. :-)

"Don't waste time trying to get rid of your weakness, using it as an
excuse, or explaining it away. Let's follow the lead of [the Apostle] Paul
and boast in our weakness so that the power of Christ may be reflected in it and
through it."

Anyone else feeling particularly thankful for their weaknesses these
days? I know I am not and usually am feeling embarrassed by them or
inadequate because of them. I guess there is just one thing left to do...
embrace them and fully rely on God for getting ANYTHING accomplished.