Saturday, March 31, 2007

Photo Hunters - Water

"Water" was the Photo Hunters theme this week and I really thought that I was going to come up empty until I remembered these pictures I took last summer. We had the wettest season on record.

The Hunt - Water

We had about as much of this kind of water as we could handle last summer.

TNChick has the coolest picture for the theme. Check it out.

Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.

Join the blogroll. Visit participants.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Love Thursday #29

Love is...

having a passion for something and finding out you're good at it.

My oldest daughter, Sweetanlo, is a writer. She loves to write. Once she learned to write, she stopped giving me pictures and started giving me stories and poems.

This spring she submitted an entry for a short story contest in American Girl Magazine. The AG writing contests always give the girls a sentence that they were suppose to use somewhere is their stories, which are to be 3-4 type-written pages long. Sweetanlo took up the challenge and went to work on her story. We mailed it off just in the nick of time and then we waited with anticipation.

Well, I'm thrilled to announce that out of more than 1700(!) entries,

her short story entry was selected as the winner!

Her story, "A Perfect Melody" will appear in the upcoming Sept/Oct 2007 issue of American Girl Magazine. Her first published work!

I couldn't be more proud.

Love Thursday& Love Is All Around.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007


Here's my Works-for-Me Wednesday tip of the week.

If you're having trouble cleaning a pan or plate with something that got baked or burnt on, no need to break a sweat scrubbing it. Just fill up the pan with hot water, squirt in a litte bit of automatic dishwashing liquid, give it a squish and then let it sit in the sink while you finish the other dishes and wipe down the counters. After about 15 minutes (longer if the dish is really a mess), one pass with a dish brush and that plate or pan is clean. This method works really well on the baked-on mess left the inside of a crockpot insert after a day of slow cooking. (I leave mine over-night. Cleans like a charm in the morning.)

Definitely works for me.

Head over to Rocks in My Dryer for more WFMW helps.

Next week is a special WFMW - Car Edition. Here's how Shannon describes it. "Give us your best tips for handling life on the go. How to entertain the kids in the car, or keep up with your little league gear, or how to stock an auto first aid kid...let us know what works for you."

Should be fun.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

They're going to be ours!

Today we signed and faxed off our adoption referral acceptance letters!

We have decided to adopt two toddlers. A little boy, whom I'll call "Bear" who is a little over two years old and a little girl, I'll refer to as, "Lem Lem" who is a little less than two years.

We're thrilled. It just feels right.

Last Wednesday the package we had be waiting for arrived late in the afternoon. It contained referral paperwork and videos. We poured over the information and watched the videos and then we had a family discussion. Yesterday we took the information we had about the two children we felt like God was leading us to adopt to a terrific pediatrician with experience in international adoption and referrals. She was so incredibly helpful, even gave us her home phone number to use in the event we have more questions! As Dr. S. didn't send up any red flags, we felt comfortable proceeding. So today we faxed off the acceptance forms.

Now we wait. The next step is being assigned a court date in Ethiopia. Please keep us in your prayers. Until the kids are safe at home with us, nothing is a guarantee. Many unwanted things can happen - paperwork snafus, health issues, unseen legal problems, serious illness, etc. - that might delay or even prevent us from bringing these babies home.

I wish I could show you pictures of our new little ones. But our agency requires us to wait until the children are legally ours to do so. Believe me, as soon as I can, I will.

If you'd like to read the rest of the our adoption story, just follow the "Adoption" link a the bottom of this post.

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Spring Reading Thing 2007

Katrina is hosting the Spring Reading Thing. You can read the details here. She has a Mr. Linky all set up and there are tons of folks signed up. It's fun to see what everyone is reading.

I think I was a little too ambitious with my list in the fall so this spring I'm going to be much more realistic. Hopefully I'll be more successful at actually reading these.

I think I'll stop here. If I happen to finish these then I'll post another list.

If you're looking for a great fun encouraging read, try Julie Carobini's, Chocolate Beach. I really enjoyed it.

Wish me luck!

Photo Hunters - Empty

Photo Hunters were searching for a photo of "empty" this week. It was a no-brainer for me.

The Hunt - Empty


I really liked TNChick's take on this week's theme! Her picture is priceless.

Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.

Join the blogroll. Visit participants.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Love Thursday #28

Strawberry Love

"Hey Mom!" he called. "Look at this strawberry! It looks just like a heart."

Thanks #1 Son!. You made my Love Thursday!

Love Thursday& Love Is All Around.

One World One heART - Winners!

I had a lot of fun participating in Heart of the Nest's One World One heART Creative Giveway. So many talented and interesting artists joined in.

Today I put the names of the people who came by and commented on my giveaway in a hat.

And my talented assistant, Rummy, drew two names.

And the winners are:

Alter My World and Wigglywourms.

My pysanky eggs will be in the mail as soon as I get some snail mail addresses.

Thanks again to Lisa for all her work.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007


Works-for-Me Wednesday time again, already?! Wow, where did the time go? Anyway, here's my simple tip.

Do you have little ones that want to blow bubbles but it's not a good time to go outside? Too cold, too early, just don't feel like it?

Run them a bath, sit them down and blow bubbles into the bathtub. So much fun & no mess. And a fringe benefit is that the bubbles stick onto their little wet bodies. So much fun. Be careful when getting them out, the tub might be slippery.

This has worked-for-me many times.

More WFMW tips.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

One World One heART

Heart of the Nest is hosting the One World One heART Creative Giveway. I read about it back in February; it sounded fun and I thought about joining but then I forgot all about it. This week, I stopped by Michelle's blog and noticed that she's joined the giveaway. The participating bloggers are announcing their winners on March 21st. Still sounds like fun. So I'm joining at the last minute. Oh well, better late than never, right?

You can go here for the details and it's not too late to enter so many other great giveaways.

Here's the scoop on my giveaway. A couple of years ago I took a pysanky class. It was so much fun that I took it again the following year. I really like doing it.

So two winners will each receive a genuine pysanky egg which will look something like this.

If you'd like to have a chance to win, just leave me a comment by 12 noon (MST) on March 21st. I'll put your name in a hat and my skilled assistant (one of my children) will draw the names of the two winners.

And do stop by Michelle's giveaway. She giving away a precious book that eveyone should read.

Photo Hunters - Drink

"Drink" was the theme of the week for the Photo Hunters. So many interesting and delicious possibilities. After giving it some thought, I took two of my favorite guys on The Hunt this evening and we went here:

Our favorite home-town coffee shop

At the counter:
I ordered my favorite selection.

The Hunt - Drink


#1 Son likes Chai as well, but over ice.

Cool & refreshing.

Hot chocolate for Shorty and a HUGE cookie (which he insisted that I photograph before he devoured it.)

I love how his cup is just his size

TNChick made a great choice for her drink this week and has a wondeful picture of it.

Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.

Join the blogroll. Visit participants.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Love Thursday #27

photo by Ladyheart
used by permission morgueFile

Love is...

A Decision.

We talked to our adoption caseworker this morning and are now waiting on an email with more information and also some things in the mail. Essentially, the children that are available to us are a little boy who is already two years old and the choice of one of two little girls, one who will be 2 in May and one that is now ten months. We'll have to trust God's hand to guide us as to which of the two girls is for us. From early in this process we felt like we were to add another boy and another girl to our family. So unless God directs us otherwise, this is likely our boy. As far as the girls go though, we're torn. We talked about wanting a baby if possible but we also explored the idea of having twins (which is essentially what this would be if we chose the older girl). We requested the information on all three. Hopefully it will shed some light for us and not just make it harder to decide. So now we wait and watch our inbox & mailbox.

We got "the call" today but it different than I imagined it might be. It wasn't, "These are your children." Instead it was, "Are these your children??" God will make it clear to us.

You might keep us in your prayers if you think about it and are so inclined.

Love Thursday& Love Is All Around.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Waiting by the phone

used by permission morgueFile

This morning I missed a call from our adoption caseworker. AGAIN! She left a message that she wanted to discuss some possibilities!?! So I called her back but, of course, she was away from her phone. Ugh. So I left her a message.

And here I sit, waiting by the phone....

Could today be the day? We'll see.


We waited and waited. I didn't want to be a pest but I couldn't help but call back, ahem, several more times. I only left one more message though. Perhaps she won't notice that I also called and hung up about 10 more times.

But as quittin' time approaches in North Carolina where our agency is, it appears that today is not going to be the day. Bummer.

I'm sleeping with the phone on my pillow.


My Works-for-Me Wednesday is a very simple one. Very simple.

It's annoying to me that the wipes that are the most moist (try saying that one three times fast) are at the bottom of the box. So I make sure that the container lid is shut tightly and then I store it upside down. Keeps the wipe I'm about to use saturated with cleaner. I do this with all kind of wipes, not just the diaper-changing variety. It also works with the disinfectant wipes and the kind for "personal" cleanliness.

Remember to shut the lid to the container tightly.

Simple? Yup. But it works for me!

More ideas WFMW ideas can be found here.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Photo Hunters - Architecture

The theme for the Photo Hunters this week was "architecture." This one was a little tough for me. I thought about driving to another city to get a picture of a place that was built hundreds of years ago and is particularly unique to our state. But I concluded that I would eat in order to get a photo for The Hunt, but driving a couple of hours to get a picture of just a building? I don't think so. So I chose something closer to home.

When I think architecture, one of the things that comes to mind is blue-prints.

The Hunt - Architecture

These are the designs for our church's upcoming expansion.

Isn't architecture cool?

Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.

Join the blogroll. Visit participants.

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Love Thursday #26

Everything I want the world to be
Is now coming true especially for me
And the reason is clear
It's because you are here
You're the nearest thing to heaven that I've seen

I'm on the top of the world lookin' down on creation
And the only explanation I can find
Is the love that I've found ever since you've been around
Your love's put me at the top of the world
Richard and John Bettis

Love is...

Taking you to the top of the world because...
baby, having you puts me on top of the world.

Happy belated birthday my Butter Rummy. I love you.

Love Thursday& Love Is All Around.

Wednesday, March 07, 2007

WFMW - Kitchen Edition

Shannon is hosting a special WFMW today. She's asking for kitchen tips and ideas, anything that makes your kitchen run smoother.

Here's my tip. It's a pretty simple one. It's a way that I stretch drink mixes in order to make them last longer and also reduce the amount of sugar that my kids ingest.

Whenever I mix drinks from a powder (lemonade, gatorade, etc.) I try to use less than is recommended on the instructions. In other words, I mix it weaker than recommended. I don't make it a lot weaker - if the directions call for 6 scoops for 2 quarts I try using 5 or 4.5. My kids don't even notice. Frankly, I think it's because the directions on the drink mix call for more than is actually needed. Afterall, the company wants to sell more drink mix, right? Therefore it's to their advantage to get you to use a lot and use it up faster. Similarly, I don't use the full amount of sugar called for when mixing Kool-Aid either. And I usually add a little more water when I'm mixing canned frozen fruit juice.

Call me cheap if you want, but it works for me!

Check out Rocks in My Dryer today for tons of great kitchen-y WFMW ideas.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Boy they weren't kidding when the called this
- The Ultimate Blog Party

Hello and welcome to my little portion of the 5 Minutes for Mom - Ultimate Blog Party. From the looks of it, this is ONE BIG PARTY, with over 750 bloggers already signed up on the Mr. Linky over there. Feel free to join the fun here and then invite some folks over to your place for a party. You can get the details here.

For those of you visiting for the first time. Feel free to grab a soda and stay a while. We'll put out the snacks, probably some of this and this because both are great party dips. Don't mind the dog, she's just super friendly. And the kids? Well, a couple of them are a little shy, so they'll be in and out. But the others - they'll talk your ear off! Are you up for some games on the Nintendo Wii? My 5 year old is pretty good! If you're interested in who I am, check out My 100.

If you have to rush off to other parties (and I completely understand if you do - there are SO MANY to visit!), let me just introduce myself to you before you go. I am:

  • married to my college sweetheart, Pastormac going on 18 years.

  • a stay-at-home, home-schooling mom to five homemade kids, ages 14, 12, 9, 7 and 5.

  • in the process of adopting two children from Ethiopia.

  • a novice blogger and have only been a blogging since last June.

  • a born-again Christian, have been since I was 13.

Well, I better let you go. Thanks for dropping by. Come back again soon. I hope to hear news on our adoption front any day now. Should be exciting.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Photo Hunters - Salty

I showed in this Photo Hunters' post that I'm willing to "sacrifice" to get a picture for The Hunt.

So when I heard that this week's Photo Hunters theme was "salty," I forced **wink, wink** myself to go here

for one of these.

The Hunt - Salty

Then I had to eat it. And indeed, it was salty and delicious!

I'm also including this picture for The Hunt this week. Haven't you ever had a tear fall down your cheek and into your mouth? Tastes salty, right?!

TNChick has a picture of something "salty" and yummy.

Grab the Scavenger Hunt code.

Join the blogroll. Visit participants.

A Baker's Dozen by Rummy

Note to readers: in keeping with family tradition, I'm letting Butter Rummy, my daughter, have the blog for a post of her own. Today she is 12! Here is her list, one for each year and one to grow on. Please leave her a note to say "hi!" I'm sure she'd appreciate it.

A Baker's Dozen by Rummy

  • 1. History is my favorite subject. My mom likes history too.

  • 2. Broccoli and okra are my favorite veggies.

  • 3, I love to act. I'm in an acting troupe.

  • 4. I love to sing.

  • 5. My favorite TV show is Lost.

  • 6. I love to play with my little brothers. (Well, most of the time.)

  • 7. I love to babysit. Getting paid for it isn't bad either.

  • 8. I like to watch other people play video games but I don't like to play them myself.

  • 9. I love to cook. I want to be a chef when I grow up.

  • 10. I love love Dr. Pepper.

  • 11. I really like to read comic books of all kinds. Archie and Green Lantern are my favorite.

  • 12. I like eating out.

and here's my one to grow on and I hope I do because I'd really like to outgrow my sister.
  • 13. I like to sleep. I could sleep all day but it does make it really hard to go to sleep at night.

Thanks for reading my list. Come back next year when I'll be a TEENAGER. Too cool!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Love Thursday #25

Love is...

He didn't want to help. He didn't want to help fold the napkins before we sat down to dinner. But he did help, albeit grudgingly. I helped him with one and then he folded another, a yellow one. He put it on top of the stack. And then, just like a ray of sunshine breaking through the clouds, he was so happy and proud and impressed with how the napkins looked in the basket.
"We should take a picture and show everyone." he concluded. "They would like to see all the beautiful colors."
"We could do that." I told him.
"You know how to do that?" he asked puzzled.
"Yes, I do." my sweet sweet baby boy, who makes my heart burst with love. "Yes, I do."

I missed Love Thursday last week and I really really missed it. Love Is All Around.