Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Time of serious praying

I know I am way way WAY behind on blogging. I am barely able to post quick tidbits on facebook. But to update any of you who have not heard, and to get MORE prayer(cause I am greedy right now on that one): our adoption story took an odd turn. We were to visit with the kids from Oct 27th- Nov 4th. We were praying the ICPC would go through fast enough to let that "visit" turn into placement. Well, about 3:00 that afternoon, we got the call saying the ICPC is done-- they can stay TELL THEM!! So we did. We heard whooping and yelling and celebrations were already being planned for family fun night(it was Friday). Then I got a call from the supervisor saying "step away from the kids". UGH, no!!!! It was discovered that our agency's contract with their agency had expired. It was a crazy fluke. But it meant packing up three crying children, trying to keep it together. It also meant packing them for unknown TIME! Then I find out the girls were going to a new foster home. Their flights were for 9. It was delayed. They landed about 11. Then the supervisor took the girls to their new home, and the case worker took our son back to his previous home. We were told it would be anywhere from 3 days to 3 weeks for the processing of that contract. In the middle of that(on the 3rd), my best friends 41 yr old husband died at 4 am. It was a massive heart attack. It was a complete shock. He was really a healthy guy. Loved his fammily. He was an amazing brother and friend to me and his wife's beloved. I left the kids with Daddy and went to be with her for the day.(really I spent far more time loving on her three kids. They are 12, 10, and 7. The two girls birthdays are the 16th and 23rd of this month, then thanksgiving and christmas... it is all without their very special daddy. I was still reeling from that when we get devastated by our kids leaving! Now it is so close to thanksgiving and it looks like we might be spending it without them. They are not allowed to come here for the visit we were promised. It is not legal without the contract in place. We were told we were welcome to come there, but the kids are 7 hrs away from us and probably 45 minutes away from each other. We are not allowed to have them with us at a hotel, so we would spend a ton of time driving! The time and money involved make this practically impossible at this moment. So we are waiting to hear that the contract is ready and they can come home. Please pray with us?

Monday, October 24, 2011

going a little nuts....

I am not sure if I have even updated my blog to the plan of arrival of the new kids! And I have no time to even go check... We are on a serious count down! They come on THURSDAY AFTERNOON!!! I have s many projects going it is unreal. We were given two sets of bunk beds.(!?) And We bought 1 set. So we have put together beds and rearranged rooms and oh my gosh we are tired every night. My niece and nephew have been hanging out here to help every day. James rocks at the hard work, heavy lifting and boy motivation. Dan is the super cook and host. Nikki has been so helpful at encouraging me and the kids and keeping us focused without letting me panic.(sometimes) I had to buy a new washer and dryer(the old ones are too small and not so high efficiency). We had to build closet space for 4 boys. It has been nuts. On top of the usual feed us all and keep laundry and dishes going thing. Then of course bathe kids and get them to bed.OH and let's not forget schooling!! I have three new children coming to my house in three days.... AUGH!!!! I keep looking at everything through new eyes and feeling like oh no, what if they HATE this?! What if they HATE US!?? They will hate our rules.... they will hate their new school.... yadda yadda yadda... so, if you have a minute to pray for us, please do. thanks so much.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Visit time!

Warning: no pictures! Not yet. Sorry. We just aren't allowed. But that being said, I gotta tell you how amazing this has been! D gave us a card that was heart melting. " hi, I am glad to be adopted. Thank you for choosing me" I went to bed last night feeling such a mix of excitement and sadness. I can't explain it. Knowing that you know that these kids were MEANT to be yours, then seeing the sad faces of their foster siblings as they beg " I wanna go too will you be my mama too?" these kids have been so loved in their foster homes, but they just want forever families. It blesses me that mine will be home soon, but my heart breaks for those I can't take home. I can't even put words to the feelings I have. But dan and I were saying , why aren't more people doing this?!?! Then I will explain the very real flip side. ;-) it was a crazy day!!! We went to a fall festival. D and James threw the football a bit. Olivia and Elijah played life sized chess. Nik and I took the girls and Isaiah to the library and met with another adoptive mom
And one of the foster moms. We took girls to potty. We had lunch. Then we took kids to potty. Then we tried to see a movie ( all the kids were sad about seeing it so we begged a refund and left) then we went on another potty trip. After a long drive into the city, we went to a gorgeous park. ( side note-- when these kids see what our town calls a park they may cry) they played in the sprinkler park part, went to the restroom. Then played mini golfs and rest room AGAIN. Baby girl needing a change of clothes btw. The sprinklers had made her twists come undone and her hair was getting puffy and crazy. I tried retwisting and ended up with crazy poky puffs. Nik worked on it and got that part better, but little sister was using the FINE TOOTHED COMB on the back of her head!!! She had three inches of puffy at the back of her hair! We so messed that up! Lol j was a sweet girl and called me mommy all day long. D held my hand, and a enjoyed being spoiled. Counting 4 boys and four girls everywhere was hard. But watching them buddy up, and seeing ri holding his new baby sister so sweetly... Made my heart happy. I have 4 snuggly girls and4 handsome loving boys. D wants to hold my hand. I gives me the tightest hugs ever . E gives me kisses on the cheek and hugs all day long saying " you just looked like you needed that" and r puts his arm around me as we walked down the city side walk saying " mom it has been a good day". Yep my sweet hearted man- boy. It has.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Getting ready to meet!!

Today we cleaned the van did a million loads of laundry and started our trip prepping! We. Are. So. Excited!! On Friday at 4 Pm we will be meeting our kids! Can't wait to hug them!!!! Our new boy asked the counselor " do you think they will mind us calling them mom and dad right away?" nope buddy-- pretty sure that will be just fine. Little sister here had me a bit worried. She will be the only one " displaced". She has been the baby in our family for six years! Today she told Nikki-- I am getting a little sister! She will share my room and we will play!! Elijah can't WAIT to play ball with the brother almost exactly 1 yr younger than him. Olivia is beside herself with excitement to meet her " twin" ( they are both nine for a month together) she helped decorate their room, sort through tons of clothes, and is ready to pack tonight. Riley seems nervous but excited too. Isaiah asks " when's that new brother coming?" can't wait. Elijah has been singing" we are family! All my brothers sisters and me... Lol love it!

Thursday, September 29, 2011


I case you aren't on Facebook.... I have amazing news! We had our conference call Monday. It was crazy and stressful getting there. I felt flustered and scattered. My questions were formally compiled on the way there! (1 hr drive) Hubby and I talked about what we needed to ask and share and it was a good trip. Then once there, we had TWO therapists that have been working with the kids, one of the foster moms(of our new son) and two case workers and a supervisor. I had to pretend it was a lovely chat not to freak out. I HATE business type calls! I HATE conference calls!!! So anyway, we asked all the questions we needed to. We got lots of answers and even hearing the difficult behaviors... we were MORE excited to get them home quicker. We felt like a lot of the resentment and anger are simply because they have been abandoned by birth parents. I am amazed at the amount of stuff that WAS NOT in their file! No physical abuse!?? (verbal emotional...etc and that is enough, but still!!) It was amazing that parents rights were terminated early. There was a clean break. No back and forths to confuse them. It is heartbreaking for them but still I can see how that may make it easier for us all to bond. I am not freaked out by the little stuff there was. WE CURRENTLY deal with most of those issues. I felt like saying "these people have no idea how qualified we are" Not of ourselves, but that God has been preparing us and HE has been giving us wisdom for a few years. And plenty of practice . :-) We were told we would have to wait 24 hrs to give our final answer. But they waived that and we said YES!!!! Then we went on to planning placement. Please pray with us that our ICPC paperwork goes through fast. (it is the permission between TX and OK that it is ok for us to HAVE them!!) FRiday they will be given our lifebook and told they have a family! Then we get to talk to them on Monday. Then we go to visit them on the 7th!!! We see them for three days that weekend. Then we get twice weekly phone calls. The 27th of OCt, we willhave them here at home for 7 days! Potentieal placement for GOOD is the 4th of Nov!!!! If that ICPC doesn't keep up, we won't have placement til the end of Nov. :-( Please join with us in praying?? Our new kids are DJ,(11 yr old boy) Joycelyn(9 yr old girl), and Arial(4 yr old girl). Cant wait ti get to share pics! Have I mentioned we are so excited!?? We have two more sets of bunk beds to set up and a lot of organizing to do. please pray for us??

Monday, September 12, 2011

In case you aren't on fb ....

I have news!! Actual news! Our case worker talked with the kids worker today. The file was being mailed out today and should be at her office in OK by the end of the week!!! This means we will schedule a time by the first part of next week to go to her office 1 hr away. We will look over the details of the kids' private files. We will talk with their case worker and foster parents through conference call. We will ask any questions we need to ask and learn what it really takes to parent these kids. Then we are required to wait 24 hrs after THAT before we can say yes. We feel they are ours and we are to be saying yes no matter what. So for us this is just a legality. At that time we will talk about actual visitation and placement timeline. Also, then the kids will be given our lifebook and told they have a family. We are GETTING THERE!!!! We are so excited and nervous and crazy busy.... We have begun the school year. We have been active in the garden and chicken patrol. We are getting to visit with family we haven't seen in YEARS! My brother and kids have come back from Fl. this week!! They are finally home. (SIL following this week!btw) So my boys have their big cousins back and we had a sleepover with Nikki(my neice who is actually only 7 yrs younger than me) her hubby and two kids, my two teen nephews, and our kids. lol We did family movie night AT the theaters! lol, we divided up into three groups. The big guys went with Dan to see Green Lantern. James took the littles(gulp... all 5!!!!) to see Kung fu Panda 3D. And Nikki and I got to see a chick flick by ourselves! I will tell the butt slapping story in another post. heh heh. We finished off the weekend with a busted head(no stitches needed thanks to new skin and lots of hair), Nikki passing out because of all the blood, and her and Riley fussing at each other. It went something like this :"thanks Nik for passing out on me in my time of need!" and Nikki saying "Riley you bleeding all over the place MADE ME FAINT!" James and I secured them both on sofas and told them to BE STILL. Then G the oldest nephew, ran into a cabinet door, D the next older nephew complained of an ear ache... the two little girls were mud-bathing in the yard with one wearing the middle girls new favorite outfit--without permission. The 11 yr old apparently worried the two little boys because they came in crying "Is RILEY GONNA DIE!?" I finally lost it, and was woozey from the blood too. I screamed "EVERYONE SIT DOWN AND HUSH UP FOR A FEW MINUTES AND FOR THE LOVE OF GOD DO NOT MOVE!!!!" Not my finest moment. I admit it. It was quite a day. AND I was on my way to be a server at a wedding reception that had been scheduled months ago. So I had to leave my sad crew in the hands of only two capable adults. It was scary. But they survived and the wedding was great. I came home that night and cleaned the sad owie on Head wound Hairy's noggin. Then texted a picture to my nurse friend and got professional advice of "clean it thoroughly, cut the hairs on and around the cut. Then seal it with new skin. voila-- 3000.00 saved from NO ER trip! I should be a nurse. I should seriously get paid for what I do. Seriously. I should. I mean it.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Nothin says love quite like:

klonking a possum on the noggin?? !! Well you may beg to differ, but let me explain. We lost another hen yesterday. It was gruesome again and horrible. My poor hen was attacked by a raccoon that snatched her out of HER NESTING box and proceeded to do unspeakable acts of consumption! Where the poor ladies are supposed to feel safe and secure in the night. So yesterday after hearing what I had to deal with while he was at work, my hubster bought mega latches for those nesting box doors. Then he installed them before bed. He watched the coop for a while after dark. Then in the middle of the night he woke up to do a security check. There was a possum out there! He chased it up a tree shot it repeatedly with the BB gun(yes I know we are getting a real one asap!) then when it came down, klonked it with a baseball bat. Very cave man style. Very unattractive. Primitive and not so humane for the death row victim. And yet, my heart pitter pattered at the fact he kept my sweet ladies safe another night. He sacrificed an HOUR of sleep!?(his most favorite thing) and I slept through it all(and I am now a tad worried about me cause I NEVER sleep that soundly) He asked if I wanted it buried. I said, nope leave it today as a warning to the other chicken eating wildlife. I went out to see the ladies this am and they were all twittering.... I said, oh, Daddy kept you girls safe another night! I hope you are proud of him and grateful!(and could you lay us some eggs even though it is hot and you have all been traumatized please?) As a normally romantic person, I was a bit shocked to find that I felt loved by such a barbaric thing! odd. I am now going to seek therapy....

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Ladies a layin!

Our hens laid their first eggs this week! To say we are excited would be a HUGE understatement. The tiny egg is from the tiny hen we call Beatrice. (Moriah hugs her... heck, we ALL hug her) Our ladies are well loved!)

Monday, August 29, 2011

Chicken news

I know so many people have nothing better to do that to hear my tales... this weekend we had drama for sure. We had 14 chickens originally. One was a confirmed rooster. We had a dog. Well, the dog was given to a farm family. The rooster went to the same family. Apparently those two were my home land security system here, because the first night they were gone, a possum attacked! I heard a strange chicken scream. I said, DAN! There must be something in with the hens in the chicken tractor!! He said, nope, sounds like the kids playing the angry birds game to me. I went around the house, no one was playing a game! I came back to our room, and heard it again. He jumped up and said, "oh, yep! That was a chicken alright!" We went out and there was a possum in the stupid tractor( for those who may not know, the tractor is a small moveable chicken coop. It sits on the ground, and they forage on bugs in the yard!) Dan flung the door open and the possum ran out. I will save you the gory details. I quickly moved the two skittish but surviving hens in the safe house with the rest. Then we poured peroxide on the pour hurt chicken. We thought we patched the coop, and put her in a safer spot. It turns out the darn possum came back and finished her. Poor thing! I felt so bad but I was NOT bringing her in... she was a MESS! So then we hear the rooster died!(at the farm where we sent him) He must have gotten stressed and overheated on the trip. So, our chicken numbers are down to 12. An even dozen. And this week, we began to see eggs! Our first ever and we got 5 this week! I have figured out the sweet ladies a layin' and am so proud of them. Can't wait til I am getting 5 a day!!!!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

digital photos...

I gotta say the other day I took about 10 rolls of film and disposable cameras to be developed. I had stuffed them in a drawer hoping not to have to deal with them, then eralized--- OHMYGOSH!!-- those are my kids pictures I NEED them. Eventually they will stop developing film. Better do it now. Well, about 100.00 later, I have photos. Some of them are as old as 5 years ago. I am so embarrassed and frustrated. And though I never would have believed it, I am grateful for digital photos! Thankful for the easier way(and cheaper! I can eliminate half of our shots before buying!!)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Kids update

My case worker emailed me today. She talked with the kids' caseworker. She says they are all doing well. They don't know we have been selected yet, but they know there were parents being considered for them. The 8 yr old keeps asking "when will we get to go live with our new mommy and daddy?" Heart melting isn't it? They won't be given our life book until we see their files. It still hasn't even gotten to THEIR caseworker so she can send it to OURS. please pray with us that this stuff goes faster so these kids who have been waiting 4 yrs won't wait much longer. As soon as we see their file and say yes, they will know we are working on getting them. They will see our pictures and know they are about to finally be in a forever family. I am on pins and needles!!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011


My niece and her crew were here for a week because their AC went out. Since we are at record temps and major drought... that is unbearable. So they moved in for a week-long sleepover. About this time, I got news of the life book we had to make. I have never done one!! And there were these very confusing papers to fill out. So, since I like scrap-booking I started there. My niece helped me sort through photos and make pages. It ended up being 65 pages!!!! After they went home, I forced myself to do the forms. I finished today! The whole package was mailed today. They will show the life book to our new kiddos. It will introduce them to our wild and crazy family. Because of their ages they will not be given a choice whether they want to come to us. It seems sad, but we are just praying they get excited. We are now waiting for their case file to be sent to our caseworker then we have our phone consultation where we ask tons of questions.... Please pray that D, J, and A will love the idea of being with our family. That we can get the rooms ready in time. That schooling here and for them will go smoothly. Lots to do, but that was a HUGE hurdle and I did it in under 6 days. Praise the Lord! I can't WAIT to show you their pictures!!! They are so so cute.

Monday, August 8, 2011

lifebook craziness

We were informed suddenly that deciding to move forward with these three children in TX meant we needed a lifebook. (?!) I have never had to do one! Our agency had always asked for update photos and stuff but not a whole BOOK. Of our LIFE. We had 15 yrs of photos to scan through,,pick out, then put in a scrapbook! Then write up tidbits about each member of the family and got CRAZY! My niece was here with her family because their AC was being replaced. So She helped me. I cannot imagine getting it done without her!!!! It looks amazing!!!! So I will mail that out tomorrow.(a few more pics are going in today) Now I have odd paperwork to fill out that is confusing and crazy and I have no idea where to start! Please pray for me?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Today's News!

Today began with an email from a case worker that the little girls I wanted had been assigned to another family.(insert moping for about 2 hrs here) We already knew we were having a staffing today(our caseworker was talking with the staff on our behalf). So I waited and waited for her call. There is a sibling group of three kids in Houston. ADORABLE! D is a ten year old boy, J is an 8 yr old girl, and the baby A is a just turned 4 yr old girl. She told me more about them. We had inquired about these kids a YEAR Ago!! Then they went off the websites and we heard nothing else. At. ALL. We just assumed they had been placed already. So our caseworker called to tell me "they are yours if you want them!" OHMYGOSH!!! I have had butterflies all day since. Seriously, can't think. And we really need to pray and think and not make the decision just because we have waited so long. Will you please pray with us? We need to call our case worker back tomorrow with an answer. Then we begin more final paperwork, and discuss visitation(they are several hrs away!), and start making plans.

Monday, July 18, 2011

July 2011

Kids at the zoo 2011

Moriah and Daddy taking a break at the zoo!

And Elijah pretending to ride the gigantic turtle statue. No worries, no actual turtles were harmed in this process!

Elijah pretending to be blown away by the ginormous fan.

Olivia loving the pool!

I even got in on the pool fun!

You may be wondering what our family has been up to?? Well, we went on a little vacation. Last year our vacation included Dan injuring his ankle. Rupturing his achilles tendon to be exact! It required surgery and months of recovery! We were praying for a safe trip this year! We only went three hrs away and rented an apt/hotel. It was two bedrooms and two bathrooms and came with a washer/dryer. It had two meals a day in their cafeteria, and about 6 pools! Not to mention a lovely lake and ducks. And yes three TVS and free internet. Which is apparently very important to this crew.
We managed a trip to the zoo and met up with long-time friends.(some of our kids best friends) We went to the science museum(AMAZING!) and we swam. and swam. and swam. :-) It was 105 degrees on average. Next year I think we should take out vacation in the fall. Unless we are going somewhere cooler!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Panic sets in

We have been working on adoption for three years. Seriously. We have had two failed ones in that time. One was seriously devastating. Now we are being considered for a sibling group in TX. And there is one in AR I really hope we get picked for. But really I think that is all we have on the table right now. And those are not for sure things by any means. But I need prayer! I am starting to panic. If we get the TX kids we have to public school them for the six months post placement. Then once the adoption is finalized we are set. I am nervous. About a vast number of things. At this moment, my house is a MESS with a capital M. I feel I am barely swimming on so many subjects.(house, marriage, kids, schooling...etc) So that I feel like an utter failure on so many things. I am feeling the discouragement so deeply that it is even out of MY normal Eeyore mode. I know it is an attack and I know I need prayer and Godly wisdom. Please pray for us? We need the kids God has ready for us. We need to not make rash decisions out of desperation and exhaustion. We need to get ourselves together on the home keeping and schooling again. And I need time to think, pray and work. I need to surround myself with supportive people and not the sponges who dry me out with their neediness. can you my sweet bloggy sisters please pray for us??? thank you so much!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Fun and tasty summer treat

We have a subscription to Family Fun magazine. It is a seriously FUN magazine. There are always crafts, recipes and fun things for.... FAMILIES! They are timed right and great ideas. (for example, while we homeschool, not everyone does. There were awesome end of year teacher crafts gifts that would be fun and easy and melt any teachers heart.) A springtime one included a recipe for mega bubble mix. We LOVED it! The last one though had a really neat recipe idea. It was home made ice cream in a bag.
www.familyfun.go.com/recipes/homemade-ice-cream-in-a-bag684806 They even have a video! Fun and yummy! (by the way, I used fat free half and half and it was yummy!!)

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Home- made laundry soap

Here is an awesome recipe for home made laundry detergent!
1 1/4 c white vinegar
1 c baking soda
1 c washing soda
1 c Borax
1/4 cup liquid detergent or castille soap
essential oils if you want

Use a stand mixer if you have one, and a BIG bowl.(the baking soda and vinegar will FIZZ!!)
pour in the vinegar first. Then the baking soda. Let the mixer stir those together and when they fizzle out, add the Borax. Mix well. Then add in the washing soda. Mix these ingredients really well, scraping the sides if needed. Then add 1/4 c liquid soap. Stir this for a long time! (This is when you add the essential oils too by the way!) If it is not really well mixed, it will turn hard as a brick. You want it to look like an almost foamy mixture. I let my mixer go for about 5-8 minutes on med -high speed while I clean up the rest of the mess I have made. I use a rubber spatula to scrape every bit out into my container. I use a tight sealing container, but leave the lid off for the first 24 hrs or so. It will dry out from a foamy mixture to a dry fluffy powder overnight.
I use Purex soap, and this means my bottle lasts MONTHS! Walmart sells the washing soda and borax now and my ingredients cost about 10 dollars and last quite a while.
OH! Use 1/4 cup for a double load sz. 2 TBS for a regular load. It does not suds so, don't think it isn't cleaning. I use vinegar in my softener ball. Or there is a home made softener which will be y next post. Sorry no pics, but I am horrible with gettting pics loaded on the computer and re-sized. I thought you might be able to use the information and recipe though even without photos. This is a fun project that my 9 yr old can do even, and it saves quite a bit of money. We do at least three loads a day, and I am making this batch once a week. Have fun!!!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Keep praying?

We have had no new news yet on the adoption front. We had our updated home study(including the visit). It was insane. Right in the middle of baseball camp(which is that kid's only activity this year), and children/teen theatre. We had two flooring projects and a few other odds and ends house remodeling jobs we were in the middle of that had to be rushed up.(and cleaned up!) It was a mass exodus of clutter.We got it done though and we are just waiting to hear about match ups!!! Please keep praying for the kids God has for us to come quickly! I hate to think they are waiting and we are waiting and paperwork shuffles are keeping it all bogged down. We have had so many episodes of bad news we are ready for some good news!

Monday, May 30, 2011


We may have a possible match. It is a three sibling group that is two girls and a boy. We are praying now. We should get more info Tuesday. Right now we are getting the house ready for an updated home visit. Eek.... I was painting and flooring.... it looks like a construction site in a few rooms. pray??? I will keep you posted.

Friday, May 27, 2011

oh. my. word

Ok, I haven't been on here in a while. Maybe there aren't even any readers anymore. But I need to vent out into cyberspace and hopefully be heard by SOMEONE who will then pray for us. I have spent all day mulling this over. How to word it? How to be as polite as possible. etc. Here is the situation: we are still working on a foster- care adoption. We were hoping to get a small sibling group from foster care. After the HUGE disappointment of last spring, we had hoped we would have better luck. As it turns out we have had more bad adoption experiences. We had one staffing in MO that did not pan out. The kids and I were pretty sad about that one. Then there have been several different families we have been "considered" for since then, but turned down as well. Then yesterday, I received a package in the mail saying "congratulations, you have been accepted as the adoptive parents for ____" It was for a sibling group I had fallen in love with. I had REALLY wanted them. And it was between our family and one other with our agency. But they had chosen the other family. So I called our case worker and she said, " oh, that has to be a mistake." I called 2 workers twice each(leaving messages) then waited to hear back. I finally got through at the end of the day and this one said,"I can't tell you anything, I am waiting to hear from the supervisor." This morning that one called me and said " I am calling to tell you, it WAS a mistake. Another family was chosen for those kids. I guess it got mixed up at the other office." GAH!!!! How can they make such a horrific mistake?? How can they not even say sorry???? They just blamed each other!!! I now have a pkg that I have to PAY (!?) to mail back to them that I was not supposed to receive??? And it is a cruel blow that it was kids I realllllllly wanted. I have one little girl not so happy about this development either. And a teen who says I should just claim them by filling out the paperwork anyhow. We could call it an intervention from God. oops.
So, now that I have blown up about it, and vented about it, I need prayer for peace and my faith to be restored. I am feeling such frustration and depression over this long drawn out experience. I am seriously tired of the stupid enemy interfering with our dreams. I will sleep tonight dreaming of the kids GOD has for us, and know they will be even better for us than the sweet peanuts I was coveting from another family. I will trust that God will work all things together for the good of those that love Him and are called according to His purpose. Maybe this means I will have extreme favor in that state in the near future. And as hard as it may be, I will refrain from writing a biting letter of injustice(even though I totally rock at those) So, any who are still following the drama of our lives-- please keep us in your prayers??

Monday, May 23, 2011

Rainy days

What do you do on rainy days? Well, when we had little baby chicks in a box in the living-room for a while, we would get out a chick. Or three. Three kids plus three chicks... equals a ton of fun. We only play for a few minutes because of the obvious mess factor and lots of handwashing but it was fun while it lasted.
One decided he needed a pirate costume to go with his parrot, I mean chicken- on his shoulder.

Moriah gives them way too many snuggles. Some rather hard squeezes. They cheep a lot when with her, she says it is because they love her. Of course it is Sweetie. It can't be because they fear for their little lives.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Home made wet wipes

Making wet wipes is super easy and saves a lot of money. It is also healthier too. Regular wet wipes can contain all sorts of things you don't want on your baby's skin. Some contain formaldehyde.. did you know that? Then add perfumes and alcohol... well it can be a bad deal. (not all of course, but some)
These are great for babies with sensitive skin or eczema. They help deter yeast rashes and clear them up.
Step one: gather supplies. You need Bounty paper towels(no other ones work as well! )I use select- a -size which we get at S@ms for less in bulk. You need warm water(about 2 cups. Oil of some sort.(olive, apricot, vitamin E oil, etc) You will need tea tree oil and some other essential oil (lavender is nice), a sharp big bread knife, a cutting board or tray. You will need a container.(I have used a Rubbermaid style big cannister. Others have had good luck with giant coffee cans)Cut an "X" in the lid.

Step two: cut your paper towel roll in half.(this is a bit messy with little fluffy tidbits but it is easily swept off into the trash if you are careful. Loosen the inner cardboard tube and pull it out. The wet wipes will come from the center out the top of the "X"

Step three: add your oils to the water and stir well.

Step four: pour water/oil mixture into the container.

Put the lid on and pull the paper through the "X."Let them sit for a few minutes if possible to let them all get saturated.

There! You are done! These are money saving and healthier. You can adjust the recipe however you want. If you want less oil, or they seem too dry you can add more water. Or different essential oils to get your perfect scent. Tea tree oil is an antibacterial one so you need to keep it, but play around with others. I like to label the back with the recipe so I remember what went in but also so others can re mix them without my help!

Mama on a mission

Here at the home in the woods, Mama is on a mission. The mission is: to save money, to get healthy, and get out of debt.
The beginning if this is simple in theory.
*It begins with shaving of any extra spending. I figured the best place to start was to cut off some of the misc. stuff. So I have been trying to find cheaper ways of getting the things we need. There will be a lot of these posts coming up. Home made everything! Well, not EVERYTHING, but still I may be going a bit hippie on ya. Bohemian even.
*The next bit is to get for ourselves or make for ourselves anything we can. We have begun a garden. We are raising chicks. We are trying to learn the art of self sufficiency in some degree. It is a tall mountain to be self sufficient and we are only on an anthill, but I figure everything we do teaches us something and helps cut some spending. So it will help at least a little. Recycling, reusing, and restyling are going to come in heavy here.
*The best part of this whole ball of wax? The saving. What I save from my efforts will be saved and put to debts or needs that wlll keep us from occurring anymore debt. I hope by tax season of NEXT year, to see a big difference in our debt and savings.
*An extra here, is that I want to give more. Obviously to our church, but also to people. Give my time, energy, and gifts. One thing I am working on, is Christmas gifts. Crochet or hand-made things that I make throughout the year are being earmarked for certain people and put up in my closet to await Christmas! I hope to have a vast majority of Christmas ready by the time that season hits!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Tornado in a small town

I am sure you have seen the national news about tornadoes lately. I wanted to share a bit and ask for prayers. Also I would like to share with you our powerful Father's abilities to keep his children safe. We spent Friday before last in a sheltered area of the hubster's workplace. My brother lives about 30 minutes away. They have no storm cellar and a new house and two little ones. I was terrified for them. The news was showing that the worst part of the storm was just a few miles from their home. I texted them and they were safe, for the moment. That was the text. "for now" There were more to come. After the storms, and I knew they were ok, there was nothing to do but pray and go to bed. Nothing else we could do.
They were without power for 24 hrs or so.
The Tiny town of Tushka-- only a few miles from the-- was a different matter. We have three families in our church there in Atoka (that I am currently aware of) that have lost their homes completely. Another had some severe roof damage. There are down trees, power lines... etc Some families right now with nothing. And entire school was destroyed. One church we saw had serious damage. It is just so awful to SEE the devastation up close. Things that shouldn't be together that are complicatedly intertwined. Like metal roofing wrapped like a twist-tie around the branches of a tree. Trees were ripped off , or even up at the roots. BIG trees, not saplings. Rvs in people's yards. Upside down. Semi trucks piled in a heap like some toddlers toy trucks in a yard. It is awful to see at the top of a hill where a beautiful Two story home was, to just see a big blank spot with debris. It is hard to believe. But these people have lost everything. Memories, photos, clothes... all they have is each other. Miraculously . In two homes, the ONLY thing left standing was the shower or closet in which they were hiding. Several people were told by God, "get out" and their homes were destroyed. One lady just said "my house is just gone! I don't know where my house is." We have church members feeding families, tacking on tarp over damaged roofing, cutting trees that are downed doing tons(literally) of laundry. There is so much to do and I need wisdom even knowing HOW to help. Please keep these families in Tushka and Atoka, and Lane OK in your prayers.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Gardening begins

We kicked off Gardening this year with a "class" about gardening with our local homeschooling group. The kids learned some basic gardening ideas. They made gardening books. They planted a sunflower seed, and started a bean in a baggie to watch it grow. So far we have 2 of the five sunflowers growing. But it is not the seeds fault I am afraid. Some were "oversaturated" despite our teachers' warnings. Some were plucked up to check their roots early.
These pics are of that class. Riley, being a teenager, spent more time socializing than actually planting. But as a homeschooled teen with younger sibs.... he may have needed a bit of that.

We did a garden several years ago when the littles were babies. But um, it wasn't all that productive. The Hubster joked about the 2.00 cucumbers. That was all we had I think. A few cucumbers.
THIS year, I am preparing soil, planting seeds indoors, "planning" the garden... I am much better prepared. Not only those things, but also I have big time help! Elijah says he loves using the tiller. He BEGS to get to use it.(?!) Riley is BEGGING to get to build a chicken coop and chick pen and raise chickens!(!?) Isaiah has found a use for his strength and activity. He has been hauiling and lifting nearly his own body weight in dirt and manure for the soil. He digs, hoes and plucks out rocks like a machine! Moriah is not too into this "work" thing yet. But she swings and works the rake a bit. She prefers "break time" Olivia loves the planning part. she is soaking her morning glories seeds and we will plan those tomorrow to go over the arch we bought.(still in box at Goodwill for 2.00!!)
Dan said I deserve a gold star for getting them ALL out together and working. One rides the mower, one does the weedeater...etc. It is AWESOME! I am seriously hoping we get a decent batch of food this year. It would be great to get food for free this summer and fall!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A brother sandwich

I am third in our family. A girl sandwiched between two brothers. My older sister is ten years older and moved out to get married by the time I was old enough to appreciate a sister. So sad. Then the boys? Well, they could have been Jesse and Frank James. If you think differently: stay posted. I have pictures to prove my theory. My older brother recently came back from FL for a visit. It was the first visit in several years. When we last saw him and his family it was a tearful departure and my almost six year old was a freshly turned 1. Now their boys(who were CHILDREN!!) are teens. And tall gangly things. Time flew apparently. Anyway, here are my brothers, Joe(the youngest on the left) and Paul (the old guy on the right.lolol just kidding by the way!)
This was us back a few years. The baby is Joe. The pretty lady my mom, the adorable long haired boy is Paul, and the oh so cute girly in the middle is... oh that would be me. :-)

This would be Paul with Isaiah's capgun and hat. Looking like a wild west cowboy(in cargo shorts and a windbreaker?) I am afraid neither of my brothers will ever grow up. And that may be a pretty great thing.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

A New year

Here is to hoping this year is much MUCH better than the last. This month marks 1 year since our adoption trauma of Jackson. It took most of the year to get to a point where I can write about it, talk about it, or even think about it. But now that I can-- I am done. I pray for that little boy a lot, but I will not spend any more emotional energy wondering. He is in God's hands. And so is his mother. and the best part?? So am I. This year I am finding the little things of routine and order are so comforting. This will sound silly, and VERY OCD... but it is true. I love the spring when we get all new undies/socks, towels, washcloths etc. Call me silly, but it signifies a new beginning in some strange way. Well, as I was dealing out the new socks, I thought I might share a tip. At our house, we have color coded things for the kids. Each kid has their color. I use this color for their towel and wash cloths(they each get 1 towel for a year, and three or 4 washcloths! and it works!) they have their color for toothbrush, their personal bucket,and their cups! pencils, notebooks, boxes for their school papers... etc are all in their color. I cannot BEGIN to tell you how much this has helped! It is organized but it is also helping to lessen illness. It really lessens the laundry! It seriously lessens the dishes. If I see a pencil on the floor-- I know WHO it belongs to! Well, there is another BIG tip, it is the SOCKS. If you have more than one kid, you know how insane the socks can get. About 4 yrs ago, I bought cheap fabric paint in their colors. 5 tubes for about 1.00 each. Then I buy them all new socks. In March it is the boys, in April, it is the girls. That way it doesn't kill the clothing budget for a whole month. lol I get about 10 pr each. I write one letter on the top of each sock in that kids color. After 20 "E" s, I let it dry, and Elijah's are done. Just imagine: a basket of a hundred socks. They are all marked with colored letters. This is a GREAT project for the littles. Even if they do not know the letters that start everyone's names, they know the colors! You could do a dot on each if the letters are too much. But this cuts sock sorting time to about a quarter of the regular time. (or even less) We throw away all the holey socks.(and with boys this generally means ALL the socks from last year) I have more tips and tricks I want to post but it will take some time. The bathroom buckets are a BIG help. This is the time of year that all the new bright colors of spring stuff come out. We have found the top easy to find colors are :red, orange, yellow, purple, pink, green, yellow, and blue. We can generally find all our stuff in these colors. Places to shop:
IKEA has the cheapest cups/plates/bowls for little kids.
Big lots(buckets/containers/ big kid cups
Walmart.... everything else. lol
If you have questions let me know. A funny happened for the hundredth time last night. When I got the socks all marked, I told the boys-- "get your socks and throw the old ones out!" They all three cheered. lol "NEW SOCKS! YAY!!!" they act like it is some amazing thing. They go on and on about how they are sooooo cushy. yes it might sound sad, but really I am glad they can be grateful for socks.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

the funny version of gift of the Magi

Wow, I have been out of the blog world for a while. So sorry. I am so behind. I have to share a funny Christmas story with you. This year, I knew my hubby wanted a big TV. OK, you must know, the budget was not going to allow the size he would like to have(nor would our living room for that matter.) So one day not long before Christmas, I took my kids to play dates and the teenager with me for assistance. We went to w/m and looked for an HR at just the TVs. We checked prices, size, brands until I had a headache. Then we picked the reasonable one, and even took it to the little end of the aisle scanner thingy so we could be CERTAIN it was the right price.(note here, two people holding this TV under that teeney bar code scanner long enough to hear the Beep.... hilarious because the barcode was at an odd spot out of the range. lol we were squatted down and holding it weird and looking like idiots.)
When we got to the check out, I paid with my personal credit card to be super sneaky. ;-) I taught my teenager so many shopping tricks.
Then, even though we were on the same side of town as the kids, we had to drive 20 minutes back to our place because my niece lives close to us and I was storing it in her garage. We did a super fast drop off, then raced back to get the other kids. The hubby was home from work and cooking by this point. We all came in and collapsed on the sofas. Chatted about the day a bit.Then a call came. It was from his dear friend from our college days. He is a bachelor still. They chatted. After he got off the phone, he says, "guess what?! Jon wants to give us his TV and entertainment center!!! IT IS HUGE!!!" lol I just sank back to the sofa. laughing. I had to go to the other room and inform the teen. He sat down all dejected on his bed and said "WHAT?!" I said, yep, Buddy, we get to take that thing back. lol
ok, well, while my big gift for him was ruined, we still got an amazing and FREE TV. He later said it was the thought that counts. I dunno about that. It seems to me that Jon thought way more of him. lol just kidding. Anyhoo, we are very grateful for our new TV and for our sweet friend who answered a prayer. Guess I was just not sneaky enough. But there is always NEXT year. For which I will begin planning now.