Monday, November 19, 2007

OCD Boy at the Beauty Shop

My family and I spent a fun morning at the beauty shop. When I say my family, there were 9 of us there at one time. It started for me with some calling to check on facial waxing prices. There are times when working on my own eyebrows will do, and there are times when you must call in the troops and enlist the help of professionals. After calling several salons charging $12, I called my mom, because I am from the $6-7 school. We found a salon to do it for $8 which sounded more like it. My Aunt from Texas who is in for the week and Mamaw were already there getting poofy hair for the holiday. Actually Aunt Linda was going platinum, which turned out very cool by the way. We turned it into a family affair which proved to be very enjoyable and entertaining. There is something about the sound of hairdryers and hairspray that is so comforting on a cloudy fall day, don't you agree?

Now about OCD boy. College fraternity guy. After his haircut, he spent an annoying amount of time trying to get the hair off his white tshirt (with his frat letters on it). Like, right at 10 minutes. It started with taking a hairdryer and trying to blow dry it off. I lost interest, but a long time later I look over and i'll be darned if he isn't still trying to dust his shirt off with a hand towel at this point. Then he goes to pay and says, "man, i sure do have a lot of hair on me," to which the hairdresser responds, "well honey, you are the the beauty shop." If there is one hope I have for that poor dude, something that obviously 18 years of haircuts has not taught him, but maybe his fine college education will, it is to change into your nice shirt AFTER your haircut.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

i LOVE my baby boys!

for a million are a few...

  • moose calls his big brother wkie

  • stinky pete constantly tells us, "i wuvs you!!!" (i love you)

  • when they wake up in the morning they kiss each other and say, "i wuvs you!"

  • stinky pete says pardon me when he burps, instead of excuse me

  • when they are thirsty they ask for a sip, instead of a drink

  • they look so cute running around in spiderman underwear and diapers

  • this morning at church sp packed his spiderman backpack. when he got to sunday school, he sat in the floor with mr. chris and began unloading the contents of the backpack. curiosity (and a little fear) got the best of me, so i stood to watch what he took out. clearly he had only packed the necessities for a morning at church: dirty batman t-shirt that he slept in and ate breakfast in this am, gray shorts he slept in (also dirty), his baseball hat, and his spiderman tennis shoes. yes!

  • that moose carries his blue blanky around everywhere, and the minute he touches it his thumb goes into his mouth and he looks amazingly sweet
This is a picture of SP after changing out of church clothes, and back into the contents of his backpack...

This is Moose, who picked out this outfit after lunch, and put in on himself, toga style!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Cheap Entertainment

As if we didn't allready love Target before, I just keep loving it more and more!!!

Thursday me and my mamaw went to Target with the boys. We spent the longest time in the Christmas Department. The boys loved the singing and dancing stuffed animals, it was so sweet to see them looking at all the trees, lights, and singing toys. This is my recommendation for some easy free entertainment for the kids. And to top each Target trip off with a $ .99 popcorn/coke combo is the crowning touch.

We did end up going to Chili's after Target, and while we were sitting there enjoying lunch, Luke pulls out a Starbucks gift card from his pocket. So, at age 3 we had our first conversation on not putting things in our pocket at stores. We'll be taking the gift card back.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Discipline or Punishment?

This morning I turned to Heb 12 for some parenting guidance, and God unloaded some new thoughts on me...Have you ever wandered how does God discipline you? Does he? If he does discpline you, what does it look like when he's doing it? Blessings are easy to spot, but discipline, when does it happen? This passage says endure hardship as discipline. Does God allow the hardship into my life (not cause it, allow it) for my discipline? That is what verse 7 said, I know, I've reread it and reread it this morning. I have always interpreted this passage unconsciously intertwining two words: discipline and punishment. Discipline is not punishment. Punishment is a penalty inflicted for an offense. Discipline is training with purpose. Hardship is painful. Is hardship a vessel God uses for my discipline? That is what verse 7 says. It puts hard times in a new perspective for me.

What is your hardship right now? Hard marriage, attack from Satan, infertility, tough kids, single parenting, loneliness, physical pain, death of a loved one...

This will change the way I can pray for my friend who has severe nerve pain right now, my friend who just lost a sister and who has a dad with cancer, my physical pain I've had for the last 3 gives me new hope and new words to pray over the tough times-with words like enable us to endure, enable us to run with perseverance the race marked out for us, help us to not grow weary, to not loose heart, to believe you are perfecting our faith through every hardship, teach us to believe you when you say you will produce a harvest of righteousness and peace because we endured, did not give up, and allowed you to train us through the hard times. Why did I never see that God tells us to endure hardship as discipline? Before today, I don't think I could ever come up with an answer on how I thought he disciplined me.

Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. Make level paths for your feet. (Prov 4:23) There is level ground at the foot of the cross.

"No man or company of men, no power in earth or heaven, can touch that soul which is abiding in Christ, without first passing through His encircling presence and receiving the seal of His permission...Nothing can disturb or harm us, except He shall see that it is best for us and shall stand aside to let it pass." Hannah Whitall Smith

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Here's To A Good Laugh

This is the old me, pre-preggo. Chi-ed hair, make-up, clothes, jewelry, laughing, eating...

Now, I share the next picture of what I've morphed into for a few reasons:
  • you need to see what my husband is having to look at most days (by most days i mean every day)
  • i didn't think you would believe what is happening to my personal appearance and house without the proof of a picture
  • i'm hoping to give you a hearty laugh at my expense today (amanda this is especially for you!)

Explaining what your eyes just beheld:
  • we've allowed the boys to temporarily decorate the hall with Spiderman stick-ons that our dear friend Joanne bought for the boys
  • Moose felt the need to embellish several of the pictures with blue crayon
  • Sunkist explained in previous post
  • The hair. Well. It is washed in the picture, but not chi-ed. The weather, I'm enjoying it (also mentioned in the previous post), HOWEVER, it has created a monstrocity in my hair. Do I have bangs? No. I don't. I don't know where they came from yesterday, but there they are in all their feathery glory.

I'm not sure what else to say. Last night I tried to tell Shane I have not permanently fallen off the Diva Wagon, or whatever you want to call it. He wanders if that is true, but hopes it is. Actually, he told me a few weeks ago, he can't tell when I "paint" my face and when I don't. WHAT?!?! Are you kidding me? I bet you can't tell the difference between Exhibit A & B either can you?!?!!

I come from a lineage of women who believe if the barn needs paintin' you paint it. My grandmother's make-up bag hangs on the back of a door knob and folds down about five miles. It doesn't matter if she only wears pink blush and lipstick. What matters is if she wants to apply a green tinted concealer under regular concealer it is there when and if she needs it.

While my tall can of Shaper Plus hairspray and my make-up bag sit under my bathroom sink untouched right now, I have hopes that by December 14th, I will have a new picture to show you. One where I have addressed my roots, and have gotten my brows waxed. Dec. 14th is our Premier Christmas party. I have a dream that I will dust off my beaded heels, find my pearls and diamonds, and that the smell of hairspray will fill the air once again.

On second thought, my current 30 SECOND prep time to get ready is really, really nice!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Apron Fever & Pumpkin Cookie Recipe

Is there anything more wonderful then starting off each Monday with a dream that you will be winning the cutest aprons EVER!?!! Go to for a chance to win!

Here are some other things I am thankful for/and that are making me smile today:

- Sunkist Orange Coke (this is a pregnancy craving)

- the fact that SP insisted we share the Sunkist this afternoon even though I told him it was all his, he would take a sip, and then bring it to me for a sip, so sweet

- when I was getting ready yesterday, I put on a white tank top for an undershirt, and SP said, "you not gonna wear that are you mama?!" of course I put another shirt on over it, but his honesty was great!

- the fact that it feels and smells like Spring outside even though it looks like Fall

- Kraft Spaghetti in a box, it is SOO good, all you do is add tomato paste and meat if you want... it's on the spaghetti sauce aisle and takes about 12 minutes to prepare

- Pumpkin Cookies with Cream Cheese Icing (these are stored in the fridge, so they are soft and cool when you eat them, heavenly!)
1 c softened butter
1 c sugar
1 c mashed pumpkin (from a can)
1 egg
1 tsp of the following: vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon
1/2 tsp salt
2 c flour
mix all ingredients and bake at 375 for about 10 minutes (don't overcook).

Cream Cheese Icing:
8 oz softened cream cheese
1/4 c butter
2 tsp vanilla
1 lb powdered sugar

Enjoy this moment, for this moment is your life!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Starbucks is behind Daylight Savings Time

Have you seen the Nasdaq lately, SBUX has been down, and I think they are trying to make a comeback by contining to implement daylight savings time. Who else could be behind this terrible thing that happens to respectable people twice a year? They know if they can get moms and dads sleep deprived because their children are getting up between 5:45-6:30am, that we'll have no choice but to wander into their establishments in the afternoons just to get through to 4pm, when we are all having dinner nowdays because we're starving and ready for bed. I'd rather you send me a coupon in the mail for a free coffee, let me come in and reexperience the smell of pumpkin latte and the sound of Harry Connick, Jr playing, and i'll get readdicted. Please, for the sake of my family and my sanity, just send me a coupon.

While I'm waiting on my coupon for free coffee, and since I've been up for 3 hours today i've come up with one good thing about DST, and that is more candlelight dinners. That is one thing that is truly enjoyable about the shorter days. It is really fun to set a beautiful table and have a nice dinner with your family. My favorite recipe to prepare in the cold months is Rachel Ray's Broken Spaghetti and Mini-Meatball stoup, with crusty hot bread on the side. Here are some pictures of one of our candlelight dinners last winter. I will also give some ideas on making dinners really should be able to click on the picture to make it bigger.

1. Set the table with a charger, then place a large dinner plate on the charger. Serve the salad as a first course, instead of including it on the side of the main course. Watch for chargers to go on clearance after Christmas. I got these for 25 cents each at Walmart the day after Christmas. Table linens also go way on sale after Christmas. If you don't have a charger, no worries, just put a dinner plate at every setting and serve salad plates on that plate. Another nice addition is to chill the salad plates before serving.

2. Plate the food before putting on the table, just as you would receive it if you were at a restaurant. This cuts down on table clutter.

3. Pay attention to little details. If you like lemon, slice one and put it on a little saucer on the table. Put dressings, parmesan or any other condiments into a nice bowl or plate so people can help themselves. This dinner I took dressing orders before we ate, and served their salad how they wanted it.

4. Think about all 5 senses. When having dinner guests over you want to make them feel special and pampered. Music is key for a great dinner. Frank Sinatra, Jazz, piano, anything that makes you happy and keeps the mood upbeat and relaxed. My friend Emily taught me something years ago that I love to do. Pray for God to give your house a restful, peaceful atmosphere.

There are lots of things you can do to make dinners special, these are just a few. Since "now is the time for soup, and the time for meat will come later" even serving soup can be extra special if you add a few touches. Turn the soup dinner into 2 or 3 courses (salad, soup, desert), light the candles, turn on the music, and don't be afraid to pop in a movie for the kiddies when they start yelling, so you can enjoy the food/company! Also, Barefoot Contessa Family Style Dinners is a great cookbook with entertaining ideas. You can check it out from the library!

Monday, November 5, 2007


If you would like to enter a contest to receive a free apron, go to . There are some precious things to see!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

11 Stoplights and the God of Wonders

Wednesday night my parents drove the boys and I out to their house for the evening. On the 20 minute drive home, after the first stoplight, I prayed in my heart, "God of Wonders, PLEASE give us all green lights on the way home." For you see, every time the car stopped was not a pleasant experience for me even though did have Phenagren in me (hence the reason my parents were driving me around town). The God of Wonders did not answer my prayer much to my disliking. We wheeled into the driveway and in my heart I prayed, "What is it God? Unconfessed sin, your foreknowledge that I will be eating way to much of my kids candy in the days to come, what?! Nothing is impossible with you, and yet we got a bunch of redlights which is not what I asked for!"

Fast forward to Saturday morning. Shane was at breakfast with some friends, and I was snuggled in bed with two sleeping toddlers who joined me around 5am. As I laid in bed, with one on each side, I was enjoying every single thing about the morning. For over 2 hours, I just laid in bed while they slept, watching them sleep, listening to the thumb sucking and snoring, and praying. It was during that time that God reminded me of something that I had not even acknowledged. On the ride home Wednesday night, we were 18 minutes into the trip, and less than 2 minutes from my house, when we had to stop in the middle of the road to let a deer cross the street. Then another, and another and another. 4 deer! In the city! Deer are so exciting, rare and unexpected, and to see 4 of them was such a special treat!!! God showed me that he did give us red lights, and if he would've given me the green lights I smugly asked for, we would've missed out on a rare treat.

When the opening song at church this morning was God of Wonders, I could hardly sing because I was laughing that he has been the God of Wonders in all sorts of ways to me this week. He has called me, well, more like thrown me into a season of being rid of every single thing I was involved in. A struggle since becoming a wife/mom is what is my ministry? How can I spend my time in a way that is pleasing to you Lord? Leading Bible studies and shepherding women is what I love to do more than anything, the study of God's word with other women is the best thing ever to me. And I have had the joy of doing that the last two years. And now, God has cleared my life of everything and has given me the clear direction/freedom/peace that now is the time he is providing me to just be home with my hubby and babies. And I am so excited! There is a season for everything, and I am excited about this new season, for I know that it was handed to me from God! Jim Elliot said, "Wherever you are, be all there."

Thank you Lord that you don't always give me what I ask you for, please enable me to live in confidence that you are guiding me. Your word says in Isaiah 30 that my strength comes from quietness and trust in you. Your goodness is not based on my present circumstances, you are good because you are good. Thank you for restoration, a husband who loves me, kids who tickle me with the things they say and do, chocolate, and for always having a far better way than I could've picked for myself.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Moose went #2 in the Potty!!!

In the midst of cleaning/decluttering this week, we found these plastic underwear cover things. Why do we have them? It seemed like I was supposed to buy them, along with some insanely thick quilted looking underwear when SP was potty training. I think it was such a fun time I bought a package of everything on that aisle. This is the best use we've found for them, I love in this picture, how SP's eyebrows are all squished down.

Cracking me UP! SP wanted to Hide, I said, PLEASE show mommy your face, and Moose is priceless in this one, he was SO excited about getting a picture!

Yee Haw!!! Shane has been home this week, and we've been getting things done around the house. Here are the main things:

1. Clean out boys closet and bring out the winter clothes. In Arkansas that means you still leave a good amount of summer clothes in the closet for the winter, because I guarantee they will be wearing tank tops at Thanksgiving.

2. Clean out my office and make sure there is still a floor in that room.

3. Clean out the pantry. Sometimes I buy things that just seem like they should come home with me, including a jar of Wheat Germ. If anyone has an idea on what the heck I should do with it, send it my way.

4. Let Moose run around in big boy undies/or naked, and take him potty every 30 minutes. This had been going better than expected. Today was a great day. I remember the first time Luke went #2 in the potty, and I had the same reaction I had this morning, "OH MY GOSH, that is man poop and has no business being in a baby diaper!!!"

5. Try to tackle Moose's eating habits. All he wants to eat is bread. There has been a lot of crying at dinnertime, and he has missed several meals this week because he doesn't want to eat. So hard. Once I read a book that said, "Start as you mean to go." I think those people never had people over for dinner on a regular basis or never went to a restaurant with a 1-2 yr old who only wanted bread. When in public, we give the kid what he wants to eat, so we can visit. So what if he ate 52 packets of crackers at the restaurant?! I claim responsibilty for having to retrain in this area, and hope it doesn't take long.

-blogging has become such a fun outlet for me, it seems like I am connected to other mom's going through the dailyness of life, it has been a blessing

-this morning while on the computer, the boys pulled out the bag of string cheese, after two each, i decided to put the computer down and give the poor kids some oatmeal and pineapple cups (Moose was supposed to have the Roast/Potatoes/Carrots that he didn't eat for dinner, but mama couldn't smell that this am

-sp busted me this morning eating a snicker's from his candy bucket. it was the funniest thing ever. i hid the candy buckets in my office closet. while they were playing in the living room, i went in the closet for a snicker's fix. i peeked out of the closet and there was stinky, i jumped!! he scared me. i felt like a kid getting busted for doing something wrong. we both died laughing out loud for a long time. he thought it was funny to see mama in the closet eating a candy bar.

-blonder than i pay to be...last night shane told me he fixed our camera. "Anna, you have to change the batteries sometimes Love." nice. thank him for the pictures of plastic undies on the kids heads.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

12 weeks, 4 days, 3 pounds

We went to the doc today for our 12 wk check-up. This pregnancy has been a roller coaster of a ride so far. I have been dealing with Hyperemesis (HD for short), which is severe morning sickness. I'll try to give somewhat a picture of what HD has been like for me (when I share my story, I do not do it with a complaining spirit at all). I have been confined to the house for about 2 months, several weeks I was unable to get out of bed due to the dehydration, fatigue, and weakness.

HD left me feeling more weary than I have ever felt. It was a constant state of throwing up, starving, being thirsty, stomach cramps at times because my digestive system has gotten all out of whack, 2 trips to the hospital, being unable to care for myself, my husband or my kiddies. For weeks, my mamaw had to coordinate with Shane and come to the house every day when he left for work.

One of the side effects of HD is depression. When I felt myself getting very low in my spirit, I had to change my thinking. I tried for weeks to "will" myself out of the sickness. Hoping that positive thinking or willpower would help me get better. That didn't work, so I began to look for any joyful things the days brought my way. Only throwing up 2 times in a day-a great day, the boys laughing, snuggling in bed with me on cold mornings, moving to the couch to lay and being able to look out the window, being able to tolerate and keep down a glass of juice, anything! God in his goodness has kept my spirits up, and taught me multiple lessons. I am on my second day of keeping food down for the entire day, and this week at the doctor I gained my first 3 pounds of the pregnancy, which is HUGE!! I was so excited!

Now for the baby report. At 8 weeks I got my blood taken. I developed something called RH Sensitization with Moose during our second pregnancy. Simply put, we had different blood types and my body began developing antibodies against the baby to try to eliminate it from my body.

At 20 something weeks we began seeing a specialist with Moose to monitor how he was reacting. At that point the hope was to get me to 32 weeks before we had to deliver. God blessed us so much, and I believe through the power of many people praying for healing, Moose made it to full term and only had to stay in the hospital a week. We got his blood taken for a few months to make sure his red blood cells were recooping, and now he is a haas of a boy.

We call him Moose because he is a little bruiser. That background to tell you about our 8 week bloodwork. My doc called me with the results which were grim at first. My antibodies at 8 wks were allready as high as they were with the end of the pregnancy with Moose, not a promising report. A couple of days later, she had spoken with our specialist in LR and called with better news. He said the antibodies could just be left over from my pregnancy with Moose. They hadn't necessarily gone from 0-64 in 8 weeks.

So, I have anxiously awaited this dr. visit for weeks. Dr. L did an ultrasound and everything looked amazing. The baby was kicking his feet and arching his back (I say his, don't know the sex of the baby). We have been cautiously excited, not knowing what to expect with my RH factor and how it will effect this baby. We go to LR to see the specialist Jan.2nd, and we will know more then about how the RH is effecting the red blood cells of the baby. We still have a long road ahead, and this baby may have to put up a tough fight, but as of right now the baby is growing and looks healthy and active. Praise you Jesus!

Last, but not least, I want to praise God for his provision for our family during my sickness. It has been so abundant and overwhelming. Shane has basically been a single dad and done it with a joyful heart. When I say it, I mean going to work, coming home, cooking, cleaning, laundry, feeding the boys, bathing them, everything.

My mamaw has come over for weeks to care for the boys during the day. On one particular trip to the ER, my sister and neighbor JoAnn were over in a matter of minutes so we could get to the hospital. My mom and dad have come over and deep cleaned the house a couple of times, bought groceries, cooked meals, and been very supportive. My friend Brit did a jewelry show for me, and my friend Becke' has coordinated meals for us. For weeks people have been bringing food to feed my family. To say God's provision has been overwhelming is an understatement. To me, God has been my sustainer and provider in the deepest way, and I love Him dearly for it.