Thursday, May 31, 2012

Toad-ally Tormenting

I don't like toads.  Frogs don't bother me at all, but there's just something about those bumpy little squatters that give me the heebie-jeebies.  I have many a memory of my little sister chasing me around the yard with a toad in her hand, just to torment me and make me squeal. 

We were visiting my parents on Memorial Day and the Bigs were outside running around in the yard while I was in the house with my mother and Thomas.  Suddenly, Evan came in and asked for the camera because "Micah found a toad!"  All I could reply was, "Make sure he washes his hands!!"

Well, after a couple minutes I just let my curiosity get the best of me.  I had to see what Micah thought of the toad.  I made a huge mistake and I went outside

My sister saw her opportunity and she scooped up that cursed little thing.  Despite my screams of, "No!  We are NOT ten anymore!!" she started to chase me!  Thankfully, I've taken up running and was able to stay out of her reach as we raced through the house and back out into the driveway again.

Then she played dirty and gave the toad to my son. 

The rest.....oh just look at the photos my darling husband captured.  They pretty much say it all.

Then he threw the toad at me.  I screamed like a little girl and jumped out of the way so fast, I'm pretty sure I peed myself a little.  I ran into the house and hid behind my baby the rest of the afternoon.

I don't like toads.

The End.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Right Now

Right now I am working on editing and planning out Project Life for last week.  Yes, that would be the week I was supposed to have ready to share with you yesterday.  This is the first time I have fallen really behind this year, so I'm trying to get it ready to send to Walgreens to be printed so I can get things assembled by the weekend so I can jump right into next week's photos.  If all goes well, I will have two week's worth to share on Tuesday.

Of course, this could all go straight to pot pretty quickly, so let's not get our hearts set, shall we?

Right now Micah is in his room, refusing to nap for the eight millionth time. 

Right now I am still feeling slightly nauseous from my husband coming home from the car repair center with the news that the repairs on our car cost $800 and we have another $800 repair that needs to get taken care of soon or the car won't run.  We have to put that one on the back burner for now, but it makes my head hurt.

Right now I am wondering what the buyers who came to look at our house yesterday thought of it.  We haven't heard back yet about their feedback so I'm on pins and needles. 

Right now I need to get back to work so I can take advantage of the little bit of free time I have before Isaiah wakes up. 

What are you up to today?

Monday, May 28, 2012

Take a Moment

Happy Memorial Day everyone!  Before you smother your brat with the fixin's or pour yourself another cold one or take a plunge in the pool, remember to observe what this holiday is all about.  Seek out a soldier and say thank you.  Send up a prayer for the families at home who are running the show without their partner.  Visit a veteran. 

If you don't know anyone who fits any of the previous criteria, allow me to introduce you to Stephanie Howell.  Stephanie is a scrapbooking guru, doily junkie, and mom to four of the most gorgeous little girls you will ever lay eyes on.  She's also the wife of a Ranger who is currently on his 8th (or is it 9th?) deployment.  If you're looking for a way to take a tiny act of kidness this Memorial Day and turn it into something really special, take a couple minutes to visit Stephanie's blog and leave her a comment of encouragement.  Thank her for her husband's service and sacrifies.  Tell her she's doing a great job of raising those babies (because she really is).  Let her know we appreciate what she and her family, and all those like them, do for our country. 

P.S.  Project Life Tuesday will be taking a break this week.  After a couple days away from home, I've fallen a bit behind.  We'll see you next Tuesday!

Friday, May 25, 2012

My Baby is a Ninja, Part Deux

In case you missed the first installment of the My Baby is a Ninja saga, fear not.  You can click here to get reacquainted with the awesomeness that oozes from a baby ninja.  I tell ya what, Chuck Norris has nuthin' on my little powerhouse.

So there we were.  Quietly going about our normal lives in our living room when we found ourselves suddenly surrounded by ruffians.  Fiendish villains of the most diabolical sort had infiltrated our sanctuary, threatening to tickle us within an inch of our lives.

Thank goodness for BABY NINJA!

He kicks!

He tackles!

And he sure can pack a punch!

And when all hope seems lost and the vile ruffians seem sure to win the day, he goes to his super secret weapon....licking the shoulder.

And having a blast the entire time!

The city is safe once again, citizens.  Until next time.....

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Blog Your Heart - May

Like many of my readers, I have a collection of blogs that I use Google Reader to keep up with on a regular basis.  I scanned the list of new posts that had popped up today and the post from Stephanie on Just me My Soldier and our 4 little chicks was an answer to prayer.  See, Evan and I had some time to sit out on our back porch last night and really talk.  You know, the kind of talking when there are no other distractions and you actually listen to what the other person is saying.  We discussed a lot of the things that have been weighing heavily on my heart, but I went to bed still feeling unsettled. 

This idea of "Blog Your Heart" is just what I need!  Here's how Stephanie describes it on her blog:

Here is the idea behind BYH:
1.Blog whatever is on your heart. It can be serious,silly,angry,happy,blunt,ridiculous. It can be ANYTHING but it has to be authentic (yes,there's that dang buzz word...but to be fair I've been a proponent of authenticity for a long time). The post can be long or short, doesn't matter.

2.No judging. No snarky comments, no making fun, no passive aggressive digs. If you are going to read the blogs linked in the comments, don't be mean.

So I'm giving this a whirl today.  I'm not aiming for eloquent prose or anything.  It's more about just getting it out there.

1.  I've been self-sabotaging my weight loss.  I've allowed the negative self-talk that has plagued me for so long to weasel its way back into my world.  For a while there, I actually started to believe it when people were telling me how good I look, how I'm doing an amazing job at losing weight, how I've become an inspiration to them.  And then the Enemy got right back to his old tricks and I fell for them....hook, line, and sinker. 

People expect you to be better than this.
If you don't keep it up and lose weight every week, you'll be a failure.
You still have a long way to go, you know. 
Even after all the weight you've lost, you are STILL FAT. 

I confess I've been weighing myself every day, sometimes multiple times a day.  I've allowed myself to become a slave to the scale, to use it as as the yard stick by which I measure my worth.  If I gained .8 pounds since breakfast, I skip lunch.  I'm not proud of it, but it is true.  Instead of celebrating success and praising God for helping me get healthy, I have pushed the self destruct button.  I need to turn this around and FAST.

2.  Evan is going to China next month and he wants to make a big move to make the house sell FAST....right before he leaves.  So basically, it will be up to me to keep the house in showing condition while living with all three kids....all by myself.  I know I said I was going to try to be more positive about his trips to China, but this is making it difficult.  I can already feel the weight of the stress pushing down on me.  On the other hand, if it means getting the house sold, it's what we need to do.

3.  I am absolutely, 100%, head over heels in love with that little 8 month old scooting around my house right now.  I cannot even begin to describe how much he makes my heart leap when he giggles and smiles and chatters at me with his "Mamamama" baby speak.  It's still a little hard to accept that he's my last baby, but I'm becoming more and more at peace with it as time goes on.  That being said, I really really hate it when people assume that means there is a vasectomy in our future and then ask me when we're going to do it.  TMI, anyone???

4.  Even though this is supposed to be a raw, authentic representation of what it on our heart, I still cannot bring myself to type out the words of what is really bothering me at the soul level right now.  Why?  Because the person it concerns reads this blog and so does the person who is causing the turmoil right now.  Without naming names, pointing fingers, or anything else that could get me into hot water, I will say this.  You know who you are.  I know what you're trying to do to my family.  Stop it.  Stop it NOW. 

5.  I'm freaking out a little bit with summer approaching.  So many moms out there have their kids in T-ball, dance classes, swimming lessons, soccer, and countless other activities.  Heck, Pinterest is covered with these great ideas for summer checklists painted in bright colors on a canvas that you check off as you hike in the mountains, run a lemonade stand, go horseback riding, and swim with the dolphins.  I feel so inadequate.  I have NOTHING on our schedule.  No organized sport, no vacation, no encounter with an aquatic mammal.  Instead, we're trying to do things like survive Daddy's trip to China, sell our house, find a new house, move to said new house, and survive Mommy's jury duty in July.  Some summer, huh?  I feel like I'm depriving my kids of the incredible childhood that all their friends seem to get to have, but we just don't have the money to do all the "stuff" and be involved in all the "things" and we certainly cannot take a week long vacation to some beach resort, Hawaii, or Disney World right now.  They'll just have to settle for watching Cars 2 for the millionth time, blowing bubbles that smell like GAIN dish soap, and running foot races around the house.

6.  I started waking up an hour before the boys do just so I can pull myself together, get dressed in real clothes, enjoy my coffee and get ready for the day.  I was really loving having the time to charge up, actually read the Word, and get centered before the kids woke up.  Somehow, somebody told them what I was trying to do and they have been up and at 'em and interfering with Mom Time almost every single morning since I started rising early.  Not impressed.

7.  Evan and I really like watching Dexter after the kids go to bed.  Thank you, Netflix!  I'm dying for Season 4 True Blood to finally show up there so we can get caught up on that too.

Ok....I feel a little better.  If that came across as whiny, I apologize.  I'll try to get back to your regularly scheduled programming very soon.  :)

If you are reading today, please leave a comment to say hi. This was a tought post to write and it makes me feel better if I know you can identify.  Also, give me some feedback about whether you think this should be a recurring topic every month.

Linking up with Stephanie for Blog Your Heart.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Skinny Sloppy Joes

Losing weight gets a whole heck of a lot easier when you don't feel like you're forbidden from eating some of the foods you enjoy.  Sometimes it can be tough to figure out how to still indulge in a version of something you crave (like if you're just dying to bite directly into a stick of butter because you're kind of a weirdo), but most of the time it doesn't take much to slim down your favorite recipes. 

The Weight Watchers website is an absolute treasure trove of such recipes and I want to start sharing some of my favorites with you because I know of at least two people who read this blog that are also on Weight Watchers and I don't currently cook for one of them.  So perhaps she will enjoy seeing some new recipe ideas, right Jessica?  :)

Anyway, here's the low-down on the super easy supper I made last week that went over really well, even with my picky four year old!  That's always a big bonus in my book!  I found the original recipe on the WW site, but I tweaked it slightly to suit my family's tastes and I ended up even lowering the point value!  Nice.


1 Tbsp canola oil
1 medium uncooked onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced  (We like garlic.)
1 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp dried oregano
1/2 tsp dry ground mustard
1 pound uncooked ground turkey breast  (I used the 93/7 from Jennie-O)
1 cup barbecue sauce
4 Healthy Life wheat buns (Only 80 calories per sandwich bun!)


Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.  Swirl in the oil, then add the onion and garlic.  Cook, stirring occasionally, until they are softened, about 3-4 minutes.  Stir in the chili powder, oregano, and mustard; let cool 1 minute.

Add the turkey and cook, stirring to break up the meal, until no longer pink.  Stir in the barbecue sauce and cook until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.  Remove from the heat and serve on the rolls with a side of veggies.  Yields 1 roll with 3/4 cup meat.

Prep Time: 8 min
Cook Time: 11 min
Serves: 4
Points Plus Value: 8

Like I said, these were a hit and I will definitely be making them often.  Yum!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Project Life Tuesday - Week 20

The Mom CreativeHello and welcome to Project Life Tuesday! This is my third year of doing Project Life and I have found it to be so beneficial to have this post planned every week because then I have a standing deadline to get my photos done!  Some weeks might have more photos than others, some weeks will be missing days, but the goal remains a simple one: To provide a glimpse of our life and preserve it.  This isn't meant to be stressful.  It's a wonderful way to simplify scrapbooking and memory keeping.

If you're looking for inspiration on what others are doing with their Project Life, you can check out my board on Pinterest and be sure to link up on The Mom Creative!

(Click on any photo to see it larger.)

I didn't get my layout done in time to take my photos with natural light, so I apologize for the stinky photos this week. 

Two inserts this week: another 8.5x11 and a Design G.

Left Page:

I found a set of these banners back in the sale section at Archiver's and this "PLAY" worked out perfectly for this week!  I've been wanting to put something on the date card for a while.

8.5x11 Insert:

I fell in love with this card that Isaiah made me for Mother's Day.  The best part is the sweet drawing of our family on the left.  I trimmed it down to 8.5x11 so it would fit in the page protector. 

On the flip side, I tucked the bird Isaiah made at preschool in on top of the card.  You can also see the front side of the Design G on the right there.  That entire insert is devoted to Mother's Day.

Design G:

Right Page:

Lots going on here!  The photo of Micah picking his nose just kills me and I love that I had the perfect sticker from Jillybean Soup to go with it.

Yup, I am posting a photo of me wearing a swimsuit.  On the Internet.  For all to see.  I've officially lost my mind.  But the video attached to that QR code with Isaiah reading the book is really quite charming.  He has almost all of Charlie the Ranch Dog by Ree Drummond memorized!

I'm definitely happy I decided to order a second Cobalt binder for the second half of the year because there would be no way to fit a full year's worth in one! 

See you next week!

Monday, May 21, 2012

A Prayer for Whom my Heart Aches

What do you do when someone you love is hurting?  How do you find the right words to say when you can barely even remember to breathe?  What can you say when you're just as worried about driving them away as you are about them hanging up or shutting the door forever?  What steps can you take when you feel paralyzed out of fear for their well-being, when every option seems both right and wrong all at once.  When the lies have become so thick, the hurt so deep, and the questions so overwhelming, where can you turn?

We pray.

But how can we pray when we can't even articulate what we need?  How do we ask for help when we aren't even sure what help we seek?  What request can we make of the One who knows everything about the problem when we have no clue about how to pursue a solution?

I'm going with this:

Lord, today I pray for the one who will probably be furious to read this post.  I call out to you, Father, for the wisdom to know what to say and what to do.  Please enter into the heart of the one for whom my heart aches and remind them that they are your precious and beloved child and deserve to be treated as such.  Help them to seek you and to find the courage to ask the hard questions and make the right decisions.  Guide them, comfort them, give them strength.  Listen to my heart, Lord.  Amen.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Isaiah and Charlie

I sat there in awe the entire time I shot this video.  Without a doubt, my mother will certainly tell me that I did this all the time - memorized a book so that I was able to "read" it aloud to people.  But there was just something really incredible about the first time my own son did it. 

Charlie the Ranch Dog by Ree Drummond.
As performed by Isaiah. 


I'm such a proud mama!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Project Life Wednesday - Week 19

The Mom CreativeOnly a day late!  Not too shabby.  :)

Hello and welcome to Project Life Tuesday Wednesday! This is my third year of doing Project Life and I have found it to be so beneficial to have this post planned every week because then I have a standing deadline to get my photos done!  Some weeks might have more photos than others, some weeks will be missing days, but the goal remains a simple one: To provide a glimpse of our life and preserve it.  This isn't meant to be stressful.  It's a wonderful way to simplify scrapbooking and memory keeping.

If you're looking for inspiration on what others are doing with their Project Life, you can check out my board on Pinterest and be sure to link up on The Mom Creative!

(Click on any photo to see it larger.)
This was a big week!  We had a pretty high profile recall election on Tuesday and then I just ended up taking too many darn good photos of my kids mid-week and we had some events on Friday and Saturday.  All that adds up to two inserts - a 8.5x11 by WeR Memory Keepers and another one with six 4x4 pockets, also from WeR Memory Keepers
Left Page:

Evan got a shot of me planting one of my flower boxes and I was so proud that I managed to accomplish it without it looking terrible.  In the lower right corner is a photo of the headline from the Madison newspaper with the results of Tuesday's election.

Someone is fixing to crawl!!

These are both templates from Cathy Z that I just love, love, love.  I find them so useful!
8.5x11 Page:

I wrote a blog post about how the big boys have started to show the effects of Daddy being gone so much for work.  This is such an important aspect of our life right now that I thought it was important to document it.  I cropped the photo to 8.5x5 and then copied and pasted my blog post beneath it.

On the other side of this page is a collage of photos I created in Picasa from our night out on Friday with my sister-in-law.  I realize now that my Thickers are a bit crooked, but oh well!

WeR Memory Keepers Page:

My photos didn't turn out so well because the photo paper I printed them on is absolutely horrific.  That's what I get for buying it cheap from St. Vinnie's.  Anyway, all the photos are cropped to 4x4 except I put two on that last spot, so those are each 2x4.

I cut one of the 4x6 journaling cards from the Core Kit down to 4x4 and rounded the edges.  Then I added some washi tape and some Thickers to create the title before writing my journaling.

For the flip side, I included photos from our Reduced Fat Man's Easter celebration on Saturday!  I used the trick I learned from Jessica of numbering the photos (using stickers from the Cobalt Core Kit) and then journaling on one card.  Easy peasy!

Right Page:

This side is more "everyday" stuff.

I really like how this card turned out!  An Instagram cropped to 2x2 combined with a 3x2 screen shot from Evan's iPhone after I ran a 5K for the first time.  Washi tape, Thickers, BAM! 

Before we headed out on Friday night, my mother snapped this photo of us.  I really liked how it showed our progress on our weight loss journey so far, so I used it in THIS POST about how we've lost 110 pounds so far!  The journal card is from a SMASH pad

And all three of these photos make me smile.  Isaiah jumping on the big bubble wrap that came with my Project Life gear and making a big POP!, my wedding rings right before we took them in to the jeweler to finally get them finished, and Thomas eating his toes.  Just happy stuff there, folks.

Better late than never, right?  Off to link up at The Mom Creative!  See you next week!

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