Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Christmas 2008

We were blessed yet again with a great Christmas.

We spent Christmas Eve day with JB's parents in a neighboring state. We had plans to visit with grandmothers and extended family but due to the boys having a lingering fever from RSV, we didn't chance spreading this virus. Both JB's grandmothers have lung "issues" and his cousin's little girl, only a few months old didn't need to be exposed either. So we just hung out at his parent's house while JB visited the extended family. Even though the boys were running fever and coughing, their spirits were still excited.
After we got home Eve night, the boys set cookies and milk out for Santa. This was their first Christmas to do this. I was excited to use the plates they made at school. And of course, Mr and Mrs Claus enjoyed the midnight snack. The boys were sure to check Christmas morning to see if Santa had eaten his cookies. BB's reply was "he was hungry".

This year the boys understood Santa and gifts much more than the past. They consistently said what they wanted each time you asked. BB wanted Handy Manny tools while CB wanted Thomas the Train toys. Hence the reason they are wearing their respective shirts to bed, Christmas Eve. The Friday before Christmas the boys saw Lighting "NaQueen" umbrellas at Wal-Mart they wanted Santa to bring. This was a request even up til Christmas Eve. We couldn't purchase the umbrellas at the time we saw them b/c the boys were with us. So, we left the umbrellas hoping we could find one at our Wal-Mart without the boys around. No such luck.

We stopped at the Wal-Mart of JB's hometown on our way to his parent's. I got out with hope that they would have not just 1 but 2 Lighting "NaQueen" umbrellas. As I approached the kid's umbrellas, I saw 1 "NaQueen" umbrella hanging. I stood there wondering should I get 1 "NaQueen" and 1 Spiderman (knowing that Spiderman wasn't gonna suffice) or should I just forgo the umbrellas and explain that Santa couldn't find the umbrellas. As I walked away decided that I would just forgo the umbrellas, I noticed a red umbrella that had been pushed under the shelve. And Glory be, it was another Lighting "NaQueen" umbrella. I grabbed it with dust and all, picked up the other that was hanging and paid for those 2 umbrellas. I put the umbrellas in the trunk so not to be seen. When I got back in the car...BB asked if I got him a Lighting "NaQueen" umbrella at GiGi's Wal-Mart. This may be trivial, but I thanked God then and there for showing me that other umbrella. My little BB's heart wasn't gonna be broken on Christmas morning b/c for some reason this umbrella was important to him.

I let them use their umbrella for a short moment in the rain on Christmas Day. They loved it. It makes my heart smile to see my boys enjoy such little pleasures. What might be a little "thing" to adults, it's the world to them... and I love seeing their enjoyment.

Although, each wanted separate items, they understand that most of the toys are to share, unless there are two of them. Santa brought a train table with tracks and all the stops that go with it. Although, the table and tracks itself is not Thomas, their trains are. CB has been most impressed. BB got his Handy Manny tools and continues to fix things around the house. In fact, it really doesn't have to be Handy Manny, just any tool is exciting him.

JB and I took a chance on some Radio Flyer "Big Wheels". They are out growing their tricycles but not quite ready for a bike. I'm glad we took that chance. They have loved them and they love going fast-fast. "Watch, mamma, watch me go fast-fast".

Because they are still a little too short to reach the pedals, we had to put pillows behind them til we could rig something better. We have since fixed the problem with something other than a pillow.

My dad came over after we had Santa and spent the day with us. My mom went to my grandmother's for the day. I fixed a pork roast, creamed corn, and Cheesy Ranch Potatoes for lunch.

We opened gifts with my immediate family the Saturday after Christmas.

Although, we had a blessed Christmas and I have everything to be thankful for, I just didn't quite get into the Christmas spirit this year. And by not having the "full" Christmas spirit I don't mean not acknowledging Christ's birth. I mean, I didn't have the motivation to get out all my decor, watch the Christmas movies I usually enjoy watching this time of year, waiting til the last minute to do Christmas cards, etc. I don't know if it was b/c I was so busy, JB working late just about every night, the boys were sick most of December and then there was the weather (hot one day and cold the next). I've read several bloggers express the same emotion and I have talked with several friends, relatives and acquaintances that experienced the same.

I've posted a survey above this blog post asking "If you had the Christmas Spirit" this year. I invite you to answer. (there is no identifying info to vote or after you vote. I can't tell you votes).


Sunday, December 21, 2008


To those that are getting Christmas cards, well barely...please excuse the messy hand writing for the addresses and the stamps.

This year I thought it would be a great idea to design our own in Photoshop with what little knowledge I have of this complicated program that I can't seem to master even after a year of trying. Doing this only added more time and stress to my already busy days of monogramming, shopping and gift wrapping. But I was determined to do it after I had decided that we wouldn't do Christmas cards. I had not even had the chance to take a "Christmas" picture of my boys let alone all 4 of us.

Determined to do it after receiving so many cards from friends and family, I finally got it created Friday before Christmas Day. I used pictures from our beach vacation with a Christmas background. The boys are sportin' appliqued sailboats with Christmas trees as the background. However, the best part of the card (in my humble opinion) is the smile on their faces. For those with multiple children, twins or not, you know how hard it is to get everyone looking at the camera much less looking at the camera with a smiles. Well this picture had both so I stuck with my decision to use it instead of attempting what usaully becomes a torturous photo session of them posing in front of the Christmas tree or some other holiday decor.

I uploaded the photo to our Wal-Mart's 1 hour only to be called and told that their machine was out of commission. This was 6:00 pm, Friday. I called another local Wal-Mart to see if their machine was working. It was, so I used that store instead. JB came home and we all headed to other Wal-Mart to fetch our Christmas cards. This was 7:45 pm, Friday evening. While there, I ordered 20 more. The photo people were nice enough to have them ready in 20 minutes. So while waiting on the other 20, we searched for envelopes to fit the 4x6 photo to no avail. But JB promised he would search our metro area for envelopes in enough time to get them mailed by noon the following Saturday. We left Wal-Mart about 8:30 and headed home with Christmas card photos but no envelopes.

11:00 pm, JB came home after he searched and found envelopes. Although somewhat too big for the photo, it was the best we could do. By this time, I was too tired to address 50 envelopes, stuff and seal. I went on to bed with the intentions of getting up early and fulfilling this task.

Well, I had to give BB a breathing treatment at 2:00 am b/c he was coughing so bad...(he now has RSV). After this I was wide awake and finished some monogramming orders. I didn't get back to bed til 5:00 am with BB sleeping by my side.

JB took morning duty so I could sleep in. 10:00 am, I started to address the 50 envelopes. Several other distractions occurred as they usually do around here. 11:15, JB and I are still trying to get these cards addressed, stuffed and sealed so I could get them to the PO by noon. Oh, I still had to get stamps and place on the envelopes.

I pulled out of my driveway at 11:45 am heading to the PO. The lines were horrific for both desk service and the Automated Postal Machine. And yes, I again just about went postal.

NOTE: DO NOT, I REPEAT, DO NOT WEIGH AND BUY INDIVIDUAL STAMPS FOR 10+ ITEMS AT THE APM!!! How hard is this to understand. The APM is supposed to be for quick transactions...just like an ATM and drive through at a bank!!!!

I digress.

I finally get to the APM (11:59 am), buy my 3 books of stamps, step aside to stamp my envelopes. The stamps I had were of nutcrackers. I was slapping these stamps on so fast that some of you will receive your mail with them standing on their heads, cart-wheeling or lying down.

12:02 pm, they finally got dropped in the stamped mail slot. Whew!

Next year it won't be like, it will be 12:05 pm, the Saturday before Christmas before they get mailed.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Sick and Sicker...

Things just seem to come in two's around here, even sickness. The past few days, JB and CB have gone from sick to sicker. JB has had a bout with hives from his head to his toes. He went to the Dr. yesterday. Hopefully after a shot of decadron and a round of oral prednisone, he'll soon be rid of it. We have no idea what brought this bout on. He had a few days of it back in October but this time it has come back worse.

CB has had a runny nose and nagging cough for about 3 weeks. We completed around of anti-biotics about 1 week ago with no success. The coughing and runny nose has progressively worsened. This time the fever has been higher. So off to the Dr. today. My sweet little CB has bronchitis, sinus infection, double ear infection, and possibly RSV. His Dr. didn't do a full screen for RSV since he would be treating it the same as his bronchitis. Now, not only is JB on steroids, so is CB. Prednisone, Xopenex (breathing treatments), Augmentin and Ibuprofen around the clock for the fever. It's time like these I feel so helpless as a mother...when a hug and rocking just won't cure the ailing cough that keeps him awake at night and hurts his chest. As sick as he is, he is such a good patient. A little whiny but still wants to play and go to school.

We've been playing fruit basket turnover with our sleeping arrangements. JB has been sleeping on the couch due his tossing and turning from his itchy hives. BB has been sleeping with me due to CB's coughing. I slept 1 night with the boys so JB could have a decent night sleep (as much as possible) in the bed.

I love our pediatrician. He went ahead and prescribed the same medicines for BB in case he should catch the same thing. I can't tell you the stress it takes off of me that I won't have to load up both children and sit in the "sick bay" to be seen by the Dr. again.

Hopefully, my next update will be more positive.


Sunday, December 14, 2008

Our "NO Snow" Day

While most of the area around us was getting inches of snow we only only got inches of rain and sleet. Literally, about 20 minutes from our house, there was enough snow to build snowmen and bring children home from school while we had enough rain to warrant an ark.

The boys were so disappointed. When they got up that morning, they rushed to the glass door to look for snow. CB came back to me with huge tears in his eyes to report "There's not any snow...we can't have Christmas".

Bless their hearts, they asked about the snow all day. "When's it gonna get here? Maybe Santa Claus will bring us some snow." We did walk outside long enough for them to touch the gathering sleet but they didn't like the ice pelting on their heads so we came in to warm up.

Well, it was an almost White Christmas.

The picture above is my 2 nieces, Alex (9) and Abbey (3) at their home about 30 minutes away. At least someone had fun with the rare snow day.

Friday, December 12, 2008

O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree

The Sunday after Thanksgiving, we headed to a local Christmas tree farm to choose and cut down this year's Christmas tree. It was a very different experience than last year. This year it was cold, misty, and windy whereas last year, the boys were in short sleeve t-shirts. It was so cold, we almost decided to go with a pre-cut tree but I insisted on the experience of choosing and cutting the tree as a family as if we lived in the day that was the only option if you wanted a Christmas Tree. So we loaded up in the trailer for the tractor to take us to the trees. Luckily there was only 1 other family with us, so we didn't have to wait on many others to choose a tree. Both of us families chose a tree rather quickly to hurry out of the elements. JB sawed it off the trunk and dragged it to the trailer. We made it home with a tree and another year of Christmas Tree cutting memories.

Our tree decorations are rather humble to say the least. Many are from past experiences and gifts. I still have ornaments from elementary school that were given to me either from my teachers of fellow classmates. Most of the ornaments have some type of sentimental emotion behind them. These ornaments are what makes our tree, truly ours.

I have realized that it has been harder to keep 3 year olds away from the tree than when they were younger. Regardless, I have so enjoyed their excitement and innocence of Christmas.

Last year while getting our tree (short sleeves)

This year while getting our tree

Paul Bunyen doesn't have anything on JB

Finally home and warming up...pre-decorated.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Cute Craft Website...

I found this website through someone else and thought I would share with my readers. It has lots of fun poems with projects for young children to do for Christmas. Some may have already found this site, but it is new to me. I am gonna attempt (the key word being ATTEMPT) to do a few with the boys while they have such an innocent excitement about Santa and his reindeer.

I am appreciate that most of these projects and the site keep a Christian perspective of Christmas.

Here are few I might try:

Kisses Whisk
1 large wire whisk
about 1/3 bag of kisses
Fill the end of the whisk with chocolate kisses. Wrap in red cellophane and tie with gold ribbon or raffia. Attach a tag "Whisking you a Merry Christmas" or "Whisking you a Merry Kissmas". (I don't like to take Christ out of Christmas.)

Lollipop Ornament
Cut a 7" circle from Christmas fabric.
Wrap it around a piece of polyfil stuffing or a small Styrofoam ball. Insert a lollipop stick. Tie with a piece of ribbon. Sew or glue on a gold string hanger. Kids love helping with these! (My thoughts...this would make a great ornament for grandparents and great grandparents to hang on their tree.)

Hand and Footprint Reindeer
Items needed:
brown construction paper
tan construction paper
wiggly eyes
pom pom for nose
Trace your child's hand prints on the tan construction paper. Trace one foot, with shoe on, on the brown construction paper. Cut out each hand/foot print. Glue the hand print on top of the foot print as antlers. Glue wiggly eyes on. Glue on a pom pom for the nose.

If I get chance to do any of these, I'll be sure to post pics of the outcome.

Here is the website: Heartfelt Holidays (just click on the name and it should take you to the site)


Saturday, December 6, 2008

Thanksgiving Blessings...

(I know it's been awhile since I've posted. This season is my busiest for both my personal and business life. Just know that when I've not posted in awhile, it's because I've been too busy to blog.) The motto that's fits best right now... "better late, than never".

Of course, as always, we have so much to be thankful for. Our children, family, friends, church, and that all our necessities are met on a daily basis. We lack nothing we need. And although, there may be things I want but can't have, I have all I need.

This past Thanksgiving season, JB and I are especially thankful for his job. His employers laid off about 30 employees but JB was able to keep his job. It was hard for JB to see some of his co-workers leave under such circumstances, especially this time of year.

While many of his co-workers were laid off, JB was actually given somewhat of a "promotion". Of course, this doesn't come with an increase in pay just yet, but holds alot of promise for JB's future with this company. Because of the changes the company is making, JB has had to work alot of over-time to fulfill some of his new responsibilities. I don't feel it's an appropriate time to go into detail of this change and all it entails due to the nature of the changes that are still taking place and given some of the current circumstances of some of his co-workers. But I can say that this job change for JB is a blessing for the present and the future. JB feels that it's another confirmation of where he is to be at this time when it comes to his job. The Lord has blessed him greatly in many ways at his current employment.

As for my feelings, it's tough having him work late hours and home less but I'm just thankful he has a job and that his employers have thought enough of his character, work ethic, personality and job performance to allow him to stay and to furthermore entrust him with new responsibilities, goals and projects.

I'll update in the future when I feel it's a more appropriate time.

We continue to pray for those that have lost their matter where they worked. JB has seen first hand some of those who desperately now need jobs to support their families. One of his co-workers that was laid off just had a baby this past summer. When he talked to her about the situation and told, we were so encouraged of her attitude and stance. She had been struggling and praying about the guilt that alot of working moms feel. She felt the Lord telling her that she should be a stay home mom but was unsure of how it would work and just afraid to take that leap of faith. She felt that this was God way of showing her where she should be and is thankful for the confirmation no matter how it came about. I am so happy for her attitude and out-look. What a way to be thankful to God in the some of the worst of circumstances.


Monday, November 24, 2008

2 Little Indians

Last Thursday evening, the boys participated in their Thanksgiving Program at school. I was so excited as this marked their 1st of many school programs I look forward to watching. They sang a few songs and then the 3 year olds each told what they were thankful for before walking off stage.
BB was Ten Bears and CB was Red River. However, they each had the other's head band and t-shirts on. So I think BB was supposed to be Red River while CB was supposed to be Ten Bears. Their regular teacher was out of town so I don't think the other workers could remember or tell them apart.

The only regret of the program for me is that they didn't have the boys standing next to each other. In fact, BB, was kinda hard to see as he was placed on the side while CB was placed in the front. I may sound like a picky, hard to please mother, but I think next time I am gonna request that stand together. It was hard dividing my attention as they were both performing. I was afraid I would miss what one did while watching the other.
As I predicted, BB didn't perform much. In fact, he held his hands over his ears for one of the songs and decided to sit during another. CB was just as lively as the rest, jumping and clapping to parts of the songs. At the close for the 3 year olds, again, they did what I would have predicted. CB announced that he was thankful for "Mamma" while BB just by-passed the microphone wanting nothing to do with it and came straight to me. (Can't blame him...he is his mother's child). Regardless of whether they perform or say the "right things", I am just as proud of them.

I am so thankful for these 2 blessings that bring me joy every day. Regardless of the hardships that come with raising multiples, I am indeed doubly blessed beyond words.

Until next time, HB

Almost Forgot...

I realized that I never posted a pic of the boys dressed for Halloween. The uniforms were a last minute save by JB. I had other ideas of what I wanted the boys to be...1 a cowboy and the other an Indian. However, the boys had their own ideas. When I would mention to them about dressing up as a cowboy and Indian, neither were thrilled about the opportunity. I refused to buy a costume due to their consistent reaction of not wanting to be a cowboy and Indian. I had flash backs from last year of me forcing on the scarecrow outfits my mom and I had made. And threatening to take their candy away when we got home. I don't think that's what Halloween should consist of...crying scarecrows and a mad momma.

So this year, I was just gonna let them wear a t-shirt that I had appliqued and jeans. However, JB had a trip to Georgia and on his way back he stopped in Alabama and found the "Roll Tide" football uniforms. Although a little pricey, he bought them for trick or treating and to wear on game days. They cooperated with all parts of the uniform with the exception of the shoulder pads. I didn't complain and was thrilled that got to dress up and actually enjoyed it.

Our church didn't host their annual Fall Festival, so we got to trick or treat with friends. It was great experience and the boys had a great time. I loved making this memory as I recalled the years I went trick or treating with neighborhood friends.

Monday, November 17, 2008


I posted "Cluttered vs Straightened" on a sewing forum that I am a member of. I thought it could help some of the moms and wives that are also members who struggle with this same circumstances and issues. The following post was a response I got from another member. With her permission, I posted this because I thought it to be so encouraging in hopes that it might help others. I am grateful for her willingness to open up and furthermore to let me share her heart with my readers:

Wow, what an eye opener. I am one of those "Clean freaks, a little OCD I must admit. I am guessing it is cuz of my childhood. And I now have unfortunatly passed it on to my kids. (16yr old boy and 25yr old stepdaughter)

I am such a freak, that when i have my kids or DH hang clothes on the line, I want them to be in order by item, size, and color. (I know, I need help) but I say to them, "People are going to see these clothes on the line, and if they are not in order, what will they think".

I am constantly re-arranging furniture almost every time I clean. If I clean the kitchen, I move the coffee pot to another counter, if I clean the bathroom, I re-arrange the towels, if I clean the living room, ALL the furniture (including pics on the wall) get changed. Even when my son is in school, on my way to taking him there, all I can think about is "Wow, now I can REALLY clean his room". When I get home, the gloves go on, and the radio goes up and I have at it, and of course it is rearranged. He comes home, and says "God, mom why cant you just leave my room alone?" even though he secretly wont admit that he likes the change.

The sad part is I have burdened my kids so bad with my "cleaning disorder" that now my 25yr old stepdaughter lives like a slob, and when I say slob, I mean SLOB. Dishes in the sink that have been there longer than she has, a bathroom I wont dare to go in. I tell her I will help her, and she says "This is my house not yours, and I like the lived in look." When I leave her house, I often say, "What have I done to her?" she is a beautiful girl, but her house is a mess.

And my son, same way, he is a slob, I overlook a bit, cuz he is a boy and younger. If I could go back even 5 years, I would just let them be kids. Let them have fun, without thinking (is this the way mom would do it, is this ok to mom, I better not leave this out, I better make my bed) and all of the other things I have heard them ramble about.

So my message is: life is too short to live it with a vacuum in one hand and windex in the other. Exchange those items for a hug from your kids, and relaxation.

Oh and one of my favorite quotes of all time is "Cleaning you house while your kids are still growing, is like shoveling the walk while its still snowing".

Friday, November 14, 2008

Cluttered vs Straightened

The other morning as I was pulling into my garage after dropping the boys off at school, I heard a "devotion" type segment on KLOVE. (I have since tried to find it to no avail). It was just what I needed to hear. I was dreading to walk into my house that was messy, cluttered and in much need of straightening up. All of this while I needed to fulfill monogramming orders. Reality of it is, if I monogram, my house gets neglected but if I clean my house...the monogramming orders get neglected. I would rather monogram if the truth be known.

Regardless, I've been busy fulfilling orders so the house has been somewhat neglected. The speaker was discussing this very issue. The issue of neglected housework for both working and stay-at-home moms.

She went on to say that her house, too, typically stays cluttered with dishes in the sink, laundry that gets washed but rarely gets folded and put up. Ironing that piles on the floor, clothes that rarely make it to the laundry hamper. She described my house in the most detail.

However, she went on to say that what makes a happy home is not necessarily how clean it is. Instead, what makes a happy home is Mom's attitude. There is truth in the saying that "Mom is the heart of the home". She has the power to make a home comfortable filled with joy. Or she can make the home one of constant tension, discomfort and lack joy.

For some reason, moms and wives can feel measured by the cleanliness of their home. We want to show an outward facade of our family by priding ourselves of a clean home. And why not...a clean home can appear to others that your family has it all together. A mom/wife can make her home an unpleasant place to live and visit if she is obsessed with keeping it clean to the point that no one can measure up to her standards of cleanliness. If her house is not clean as she measures it, then no one will be happy until it is. She can constantly nag their children and husbands to keep a clean house. Furthermore, she is hurting herself with the constant worry and obsession that bleeds into the family atmosphere. The children are afraid of playing with toys or the mother refuses to let their friends come play in fear of her domain getting messed up. "I just cleaned up, no Susie is not coming over". "When your friends get here, do not drag out every toy". "You play only in your room." What kind of welcoming home can you have with this type of attitude?

Please don't accuse me of judging, because I can feel the same way. I know what it's like to have just cleaned the kitchen or den only to have toys and dishes messed up again. It can feel like a never ending cycle. It can be frustrating. But here is where we as moms and wives make a choice to have a home of joy and peace or we one of constant tension and strife. What good is a straightened home if it's filled with strife?

The speaker went on to say that if she had to choose, she would choose a Cluttered but comfortable home rather than a Straightened home filled with strife.

I choose cluttered but comfortable, too. This devotion is what I needed to make me feel better as a mom and wife. It affirmed to me that it doesn't matter if my house is cluttered and messy. What matters most is that my husband and children are happy, that my home is one of peace and joy. It matters to me that when friends visit, they feel comfortable and welcomed. I want my children's friends to enjoy being at my house. I want them to play without fear of upsetting me because they messed up the den.

One of the greatest compliments I have receiverd was from a from a friend that was over, "I like coming to your house, it feels lived in."

Blessed are those who can do both...keeping a constant clean home without obsession while also keeping a home of peace. Some are fortunate to have your house cleaned by hired help. While this can be a blessing, these moms/wives, too, can cause strife if someone dares to mess up their house that she just paid to have cleaned.

So those who come to my house, it may not always be clutter free and cleaned but I will do my best to make it a comfortable and welcoming experience. I want to be a mom who keeps a happy home even if it's not always clean.

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Reactions from the Middle East

As I sat last night on my couch anxiously awaiting the outcome of the election, I failed to realize that citizens from other countries were doing the same thing. They watched with the same anticipation because they, too, will be effected by this election. Can you imagine being affected by a country and it's political elections that you are not even a citizen of. Citizens of these other countries will be affected by an election they couldn't even participate in.

You must first understand that is election wasn't just about America's economical crisis all though it was this issue that seemed the biggest here in the last weeks of campaigning, rightly so because it effects us citizens directly.
You see, this election was just as importantly if not more about foreign policy. This issue seemed to get pushed to the side due to the economic crisis.

Not only were most Americans voting with hope of change, but the world was hoping their 'vote' for change would be resonated vicariously through us. Only their meaning of change is most different than ours. The Muslim world praises the hopes of change in America for their own interests, not for ours. They hate America due to our 'no change' political views when it comes to radical Islamics and handling terrorists. We Americans don't want to acknowledge that our so called 'no change' policy has kept us attack free for the past 8 years.

Well congratulations, America. We voted for change and we will get it...unfortunately in more ways than we fail to acknowledge or believe the reality of. Not only will there be change within our own borders, there will be change in other countries due to America's vote. I believe some of this change can be positive but even more so, it can be very detrimental to America, her citizens and the countries of the rest of this world.

I've linked a few sites that I believe to be legit regarding the world's reaction to this election. First, let me say that I am not an Obama hater nor am I a McCain lover. I have issues with both candidates regarding their personal and political views. These links are posted for you to view in order to gain your own perspective and opinion.

I am reminded that no matter who is President, we serve God, not our elected officials. God was not sitting on his couch anxiously awaiting the results like I and most of the world. He already knew who would be elected and none of this outcome was a surprise to him as will nothing that happens within the next 4 years. He allowed this election to be and he allows Kings, Presidents, and other government officials to rule.

I found these versus on another site that can serve as a reminder of just how in control God is:
* Daniel 2:21 — "It is He [the God of heaven]…who removes kings and establishes kings."
* Job 42:2 — "I know that You [the God of Israel] can do all things, and that no purpose of Yours can be thwarted."

My God, he was, my God he is, my God he's always gonna matter what an election outcome is today or tomorrow.

Until next time, HB

Monday, November 3, 2008

Fall Happenings

I am quite behind when it comes to posting some of the fall events we have experienced these past few months. For that reason, I'm just posting all details in one post along with the pics.

We spent A Day in the Country. It was this event that assured us we are not ready for Disney World. Not that we were contemplating but know now not even go as for as contemplating. If we can't make it in the country we certainly can't make it at Disney. BB didn't want to participate in most of the children's games and almost had a melt down if you even tried to encourage him. On the other hand, CB loved it. He was all about fishing, throwing bean bags, and all other small activities they had. They both did enjoy petting the few animals they had. It was fun while it lasted but I was glad to be gone. It was actually hot and with BB not really into it made it a little difficult to entertain both children.

We also participated in Friends Day hosted by FBC Madison, where my parents are now members. BB did better partaking in the the children's events. And as usual CB loved it. Cousins, Alex and Abbey also came to the event which made it even more fun. My boys didn't yet have a costume while Alex was a Georgia Bulldog football player and her sister Abbey was a Georgia Bulldog cheerleader.
They even brought UGA, their bulldog, along as their mascot. He was well received by fellow participants until he began to snipe the food off people's plates as they were eating on the ground. Needless to say, he had to leave the eating areas.

Another fun fall activity the boys got to do for their 2nd time was going to the pumpkin patch. We didn't go as a family this year, but I got to go with the boys as a field trip with their school. Pappaw also went with us. I enjoyed spending the day with my boys and their school friends who also happen to be their friends at church. Regardless, it was a joy to see them interact with their friends in a different environment. I also got to see just how smitten CB is with his "girlfriend" Rileigh.
Ms Rileigh and CB

We loaded a trailer for a hay ride around the field where we saw animals and then soon stopped to pick out our pumpkins. The kids also got to play in the hay maze and on the rope swings. We then all gathered for a picnic lunch under the trees. I enjoyed meeting other moms and their children.

Until next time, Happy Fall Y'all!, HB

Friday, October 31, 2008

Job Opportunity

At Miskelly Furniture, we are in need of some experienced retail sales people to join the team. We offer a fun and rewarding sales opportunity in a Christian atmosphere.

This opportunity is a full-time position with a four day work week. That’s right, a four day work week.

If you know of anybody who may be interested in coming on board, please have them send an email or give me a call at the number listed below. Furniture experience is a plus but not a requirement.

We have sales positions available at Miskelly Furniture, the Miskelly Roomstore and the new Ashley Furniture Homestore in Madison.

If interested please send email to

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Going Postal

Going Postal: Going postal is an American English slang term, used as a verb meaning to suddenly become extremely and uncontrollably angry, possibly to the point of violence.

If you have 20 envelopes to mail....DO NOT USE THE AUTOMATED POSTAL MACHINE!!!

Yesterday I had to run to the Post Office to mail a monogram order. After standing behind this women for about 5 minutes, she turns to me and says..."This machine is messing up. It worked fine with the first 10, but trying to do the past 5, it keeps messing up and I've got 5 more to do."

I was so close to just screaming..."you don't use the APM for 20 envelopes!!!!" "That's what the counter behind those double doors are for". The can weigh 1 envelope and print 20 stamps, instead of having to weigh and pay for each of your 20 envelopes. You are interfering with my day and the rest of us standing in line.

The APM is supposed to be for those with a couple of items that need mailing and do not require any complicated mailing issues. I had 1 package.

I ended up having to use the counter where I seemed to have gotten the most unpleasant help who was ready to go to lunch. Needless to say, I got my package mailed and was on my way.

The APM hog was still trying to get the machine to work and was asking for some assistance from postal employees.

Until next time, HB

Monday, October 27, 2008

From Mom to Referee

I think my boys are training for the WWF these days. If so, I'll be the most experienced referee for the business. These days I feel more like a referee than a mom.

I had the intentions of cleaning my house this morning as it has gone to a pig sty since I was sick last week. However, the boys had other plans like hitting, pushing, kicking, yelling and driving me into a state of my own need to be refereed.

This morning I woke up to CB crying because BB hit him when he tried to turn the light on. Apparently BB didn't want to wake up and turning the light on just wasn't an option. After dealing with that, we 3 meandered into the den and kitchen for the routine strawberry milk.

After many attempts to sweep and mop my kitchen, I finally gave up due to spending most of my time in the den in the middle of live wrestling matches. They fought over trucks, bulldozers, tv shows, who sits in what chair, and anything else they could claim to be their own.

You see, I can't send them to their room because they share a room. If you recall, there had already been a smack down earlier in the morning. I tried to send one to my room and one to their room. That became a battle as each wanted to go to my room. They each ended up in a chair in the den. I dared them to get out of the chair. After about 45 minutes, I finally got my kitchen cleaned with no interruptions while they sat in the chairs.

We later went to Wal-Mart where the wrestling continued in the buggy. As I was sternly and firmly telling them not look at each other, not to touch each other, not to talk to each mother's prim and proper cousin walks by only to immediately turn around and in her true southernbelle accent and mannerisms "Holly is that you? I haven't seen you in so long and the last time I saw the boys they were in car seats." "How's your mamma and them?" "This one looks just like Uncle Bonnie (referring to CB who looks like my grandfather, my mom's father) "Y'all have got a wedding coming up don't ya'?" "I wish I could go but it's just so far but I just love weddings especially when I get to visit with the whole family. You know, I just love visiting with family".

You have to understand my mom's cousin to appreciate how untimely this was. She is from the Old South where you dress up even to go to the grocery store down the road...her family owns cotton farms in the delta. And here I was in a t-shirt, blue jeans, flip flops, no make-up, hair in a pony-tail...trying to keep my temper in check in the middle of Wal-Mart. (Aunt Myra and Daddy, you know who I am talking about and you can appreciate this moment..MLN).

My saving grace yet another gasping moment for my southernbelle cousin was when CB announced that he had to doo-dooed. We were able to get away and off the bathroom we went.

As I was trying to get the boys out of Wal-Mart and they both determined to get on some ride, get some cheap thrill from a vending machine we run into that cousin again. Only this time I was firmly reiterating to CB that we were not getting a tatoon (his word for tatoo).

She gracefully walks over and says..."I know bringing twins to Wal-Mart has got to be hard". "You know were like triplets"

"Yes, mam, it is, give every one a hug for me".

By the time we got home, it was time for lunch and then a well needed nap. The wrestling matches weren't as often this afternoon.

Until next time, HB

Super Scribbler Award

Well there aren't many things in my life that I have won. I remember a few in elementary...3rd place for the "Idiom" award and 2nd place for naming our new school newspaper. As for the idiom award in 5th grade, we had to draw a representation of an idiom. I drew an interpretation of "hold your tongue". Fellow students had to vote and I won 3rd place.

I digress. Back to point of this post. The author of The Storm Front and close friend, chose me as a winner of the Super Scribbler Award. This award does seem most appropriate for me in that I feel like just "scribble" with this blog, however, superior is a bit of an over-statement. As much as I enjoy blogging, I am not one that can blog on demand. In fact, I usually think about blogging ideas when I am lying in bed about midnight but just too tired to get up and blog it.

Now to keep this award going, I am to name some fellow bloggers who I think deserve the award.

The Meurrier Family I love to read her post about her sweet Myla. This little girl seems to be a dream child. She will make anyone want to have children. You can tell through Meredith's writings that Myla is truly the apple of their eye and that she is most loved. Meredith makes motherhood fun.

The Bounds Family Rileigh, better know as Rireigh to CB is his girlfriend. And after being around her last week at the Pumpkin Patch, I can see why. She has the sweetest disposition. I wish I had Christy's patience with children.

The McArdle Family Michelle writes with such eloquence and honesty. I love reading the thoughts and emotions she puts into words. She is a great mom and makes it look like the easiest job in the world.

Until next time, Hope you all enjoy your award, HB

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

All 4 Liv Stationary ....Give Away

Who doesn't like winning something for FREE! All 4 Liv Stationary is having give away. Click on her site and just follow the directions. She has some cute, fun items especially for the upcoming holiday seasons.
Good Luck, HB

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fungus Among Us

For the past week and half, I have felt like the "Fungus Among Us".

Last Friday, I finally broke down and called my mom, who is the X-Ray Tech for our family doctor. I was begging to be seen only to be told that our doctor left early due to being sick. She asked if I was feeling worse or about the same. To which I replied through tears, "I just feel like I am full of infection".

Lower back pains, headaches that even Aleve and prescription strength decongestants wouldn't touch, dizziness, nausea, light-headed, and emotional.

Well, I did go see my doctor this morning and I was right. I am just full of infection. Terrible ear infection in my right ear, terrible sinus infection, UTI, and a yeast infection. Which explains all the symptoms listed above. I've also had an infected gland under my arm that finally came to "a head" Sunday night. I won't go into details about this one, even I get nauseous thinking about that thing draining. To give you and idea of the size, it took up the biggest part under my arm. Extremely painful to move my arm as it would send pain even down to my thumb. Made for about a week of sleepless nights as I would roll over on that arm and wake with acute pain. But it finally feels better after draining.

My urine test showed blood and sugar. The blood is probably due to infection and the sugar is somewhat unexplained at this time. He is hoping is just due to all the infections. He did a blood sugar test which cam back normal to follow up more on the sugar. I'll go back in 2 weeks for another urine test to see if it has cleared up.

1 shot and 3 meds later, I should be feeling better in the next few days. My 3 boys are also battling scratchy throats, runny noses and a mild hacking coughs.

I blame most of our sinus/cold troubles on this weather. I can hate this weather as much as I love it. Cold at night and hot during the day.

Until next time, I think I may start living in a bubble, HB

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Spa-ing and Shopping

Last weekend, I went on our annual all girls, spa trip. This was our 3rd time to go and I must say that each year it just gets better and better. I'm always so stressed about it up til time to go but quickly become relaxed and comfortable once I get together with all the girls.

We left Friday at noon and didn't return til Sunday about 6:30. We enjoyed relaxing in the Jacuzzi on Friday night after the day of traveling down and then enjoyed our spa treatments Saturday morning.

After lunch, we headed to the outlet mall where we shopped til we dropped, literally. We returned to the condo and watched P.S. I Love You. Sunday, we again returned the mall for a few more hours of shopping before heading home.

I can't begin to explain the relationship we all have. We have all known each other for years. We get along like sisters even with our friend Tracy not living here anymore. We may not see each other every Sunday or for weeks but we can just pick up where we left off from our last visit. This time we have together is truly special and creates memories that excites for the next trip.

On our way to the Beach....

On our way home....we were packed out. It started raining on the way home and since some of our luggage was on a back rack, we had to pile it inside, which was already full of our shopping loot. I now know what it feels like to be a turtle or a snail all folded up in a shell. Leah and I were folded up on the back seat. Although, no one had any leg room but Tracy and that was only b/c she was driving.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

It's a Dog's Life

Gizmo, Murphy, and Stuffins.

Praying you all have a great week!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Our Newest Ride

It was bound to happen. We knew it would but hoped it would have at least lasted through the summer season. And we especially hoped it wouldn't have happened the day before we left for vacation. But it did. So we had to make a rather quick decision when we got back home as to just what to do. Should we buy another just like the one that had just blown up or should we move up in the world to a nicer ride. Well, JB decided to move up in the world. He is now the proud owner of this....

Just look at those new wheels. Our push mower blew up, literally the day before we left for vacation. We had to ask the neighbors to borrow their lawn mower just to finish the backyard.

JB, went and purchased his new ride the day after we got back. This beauty even has head lights. He's only used it twice since he purchased it while he's been having to mow once a week with the push mower. Oh well, he'll get to ride his new wheels much more come next spring and summer.

Until next time, HB

Monday, September 29, 2008

Show Me the Money Part 2

As you have read before, I have been playing the Grocery Game. I thought I would share, again, some of my bargains.

For the past 2 weeks, here are my savings:

Walgreens--$110.21 worth of groceries for $55.28. A total savings of $54.93

Kroger--$84.64 worth of groceries for $68.01. A total savings of $16.63

CVS--$55.70 worth of groceries for $21.70. A total savings of $34.00

Total spent for the past 2 weeks--$250.55 worth of groceries for $144.99.

Total amount saved the past 2 weeks-----$105.56

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Bug Free but not Allergy Free

Yesterday was vomit and diarrhea free. However, BB broke out into his urticaria again. This time it was around 1:30. After his prescribed dose of Benadryl, it didn't improve and continued to spread. I called his pediatrician, in which I got a much better reception and they immediately worked me in.

His doctor believes that he is having an allergic reaction to something that he is eating or some kind of preservative in foods. However, it has been known to happen when exposed to certain viruses and bacteria. When I told him that we have had the "stomach bug" all week, he did seem to think that this could have possibly caused the sudden onset. According to the doctor and what I have read about it, the causes of urticaria are hard to pinpoint and sometimes go unknown. It can disappear as fast as it appeared and flare-up several times a day while dormant on others.

With all that being said, he prescribed some oral steroids along with an epi-pen just in case his allergies become more severe. He also advised taking children's Claritan everyday and we can use Benadryl as needed for sudden flare-ups.

Today was vomit and diarrhea free, also. And I thought was gonna be urticaria free. However, about 5:30, BB had another flare-up. Only this time it didn't spread as fast. I held off the Benadryl to see how fast and how bad it would get. It did spread and I eventually had to give Benadryl. At least this time, the Benadryl did help.

I plan to send the boys to school tomorrow. Hopefully, any "mean bugs" will remain at school and leave us alone.

Until next time, HB

Monday, September 22, 2008

From Mean Bug to Mean Allergy

Well, the rest of the day hasn't fared well. I got the bright idea I just had to steam clean my carpet since it had vomit and other body fluids from sick children. It was my last resort at trying to sanitize this place.

My dear dad picked up my sister's carpet cleaner and brought it over to my house. He helped me clean the carpet in the den and keep crowd control amongst the boys and Gizmo.

After a hard morning of more sanitizing, the boys went down for a nap and my dad went home to rest, also. He's still a little drained from his sickness on Saturday. JB remained in the bed for most of the day.

About 4:00 PM, BB woke up from his nap but came to me complaining of his leg itching and hurting. To say I was shocked at what I saw is an understatement. He had numerous of welts forming on his leg that started at his ankles and ran to his knee. I immediately called my dad to come back over and help me take him to the doctor. At the time, I thought I would need to take both as JB was still dead to the world from the Phenergan.

I woke JB up to let him know what was happening. While, he's getting BB changed to cleaner clothes and I'm trying to contact our pediatrician. I won't go into the frustration I experienced with the doctor's office. Needless to say, I took BB to my mom's office to see our family physician b/c I wasn't gonna wait around for a nurse to call me back with what after-hour appointments they still had left. Although, this situation wasn't an ER emergency, I certainly didn't have time for a call back with an appointment that might have been 1 hour later. By this time all the welts, had meshed together and were now to his thigh, like one big swollen leg and they were now on both legs.

JB said he felt well enough to keep CB while my dad and I took BB to the doctor. The diagnosis was obviously an allergic reaction to something. The only thing we can think of is the cleaner for the carpet (that I just had to clean), although, it took several hours to manifest. I looked in his bed for any bugs but found nothing.
By the time we arrived at the doctor, the welts had grown to his buttocks and were really red and hot to the touch.

Luckily, all that was needed was some Benadryl, which I happened to put in my purse on the way out the door "just in case". I would have already given him some, but didn't know how much to give for such a situation.

From there we went back to my parents so not to get BB back on our carpets. My dear dad, again, went back to my house to try and rinse the carpet of any leftover cleaner, if that's actually what triggered BB's reaction, only time will tell if the rinse worked. If it's not the cleaner, then I'll be trying to figure out what it is. Hopefully, there won't be another reaction. We'll see.
You will see in the pics below just a bit of what was on both legs. The pic is actually after Benadryl when the welts were beginning to look better. BB went to bed with red splotches but no welts and more Benadryl.

Until next time, HB

We have come Full Cirlce

It's Monday morning and we are still sick. I ended up getting the "mean bug" beginning Friday night and Saturday. CB got sick again Friday night, but only threw up once. BB still has random bouts of diarrhea and JB starting throwing up last night and well into the morning. He's currently in our bed asleep.

My dad was sick all day Saturday and JB's sister, Angie, was sick last Thursday. I apologize to anyone else we may passed on this hideous germ.

Is there a disinfectant bomb I can purchase somewhere and let it go off? You know, like those roach and flea bombs you set off in your home while you are away for a few hours. We truly need one.

I don't know what it's gonna take to get rid of this but I am and have been disinfecting everything we put our hands on from door knobs, sink knobs, fridge door, cabinet knobs, light switches, toilets, EVERYTHING. I am constantly washing sheets and clothes to rid of lingering germs that may still be. I really don't know what else to do. I guess it just has to run it's course.

Whatever strand it is, it has multiple symptoms. Vomiting, Diarrhea, and achiness. My back, legs and hips so bad I honestly thought I had a ruptured disk in my lower back. My dad and Angie complained of the same symptoms.

I felt a little better after reading a blog from someone in another state where she reported that she and her husband had been sick. And claimed to have never been sicker. So I guess we are not the only ones. I just feel a little isolated...sorta like we started this whole germ. Actually, it's been going around the boys' school but I don't know how bad others have had it.

I do ask that you continue to pray for us. We are going on day 5 of this stuff.

Until next time, HB

Friday, September 19, 2008

"That's a Mean Bug, Mamma"

To quote BB when I told him that CB and Daddy had a "stomach bug"...."That's a mean bug, Mamma" And he was correct. Thursday morning, CB came into our room about 4:30 AM saying he was cold. Actually he was sick. Poor thing, threw up 3 times by 8:30 AM. As the day progressed his sickness seemed to subside until 8:30 PM. He was "sick" free for the rest of the night.

JB never got sick instead kept a constant state of nausea. Enough to make you feel miserable for the day.

JB stayed with CB while BB and I went to my parents' hoping to avoid the bug. BB was sick today but not as bad as his brother was. I have yet to get it, but time may prove otherwise.

I'll be glad when we are all feeling better. For the last 3 weeks, we had been battling runny noses, congested coughs, low grade fever and other cold like symptoms. These all have seem to subside for the time being. Again, time will may prove otherwise and fall and winter set in.

We covet your prayers that we will all be healed soon. Thanks to those who are emailed your concerns.

Until next time, HB

Another Chance

If you were unable to get an appointment with Jeanelle Caraway for a Fall/Halloween Mini Photo shoot, she is now taking appointments for Saturday, Oct. 4th.

Until next time, say, "Cheese", HB

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Fall Mini Photo Session

You will notice in the poster below that you can get a Fall "Mini Photo Session" with the local photographer, Jeanelle Caraway for only $25.00 which includes (2) 5x7's and 8 wallets! Furthermore, additional prints will be 20% off! She is a great photographer and her service is exceptional also.

Location will be at an old wooden shed behind the big white realty house in Reunion. There will be haybales and pumpkins to further enhance the scenery. Dates are Saturday, October 18th from 8 to 4 and Sunday, October 19th from 1 to 6. To book your appointment or for more information you may contact her at 601.405.6969 or

I and several of my friends have used her before and can attest to her great photography. To view her work you may visit I think you will agree that her pictures speak for itself. I have already made my appointment and if you haven't, I encourage you to do so quickly. She is booking up rather fast.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Vacation 2008

It was good while it lasted but it's gone. It's just like planning a wedding and planning for Christmas. The anticipation is exciting and makes for some sleepless nights but in 4 short days, it was gone leaving only memories, pictures, and the anticipation of the next vacation.

We arrived in Orange Beach on Sunday and left at 11:00 pm on Wed night. We had not planned to leave at that time but decided to drive straight through during the night which turned out to be a good decision. We were scheduled to check out Thursday by 11:00 AM anyway, so why not, we thought.

The weather couldn't have been more beautiful. The temps were awesome and very much bearable. The only day that we couldn't get in the water was Wednesday. That morning was a red flag with a double red flag by the afternoon due to hurricane Ike. However, we were still able to enjoy the sand and pool.

Monday night we played Adventure Golf. Tuesday night we shopped the souvenir shops and local boutiques. We enjoyed seafood every night of our stay.

As our time ended, I have already begun to anticipate our vacation for next year. The boys loved "bacation" and still ask if we can go to the beach.

I've posted a slide show below of just a few pics that I took. For those who remember my pics from last year...I took 900. This year was only 200...I was too busy having fun.


Friday, September 5, 2008

Beach Bound

We are headed to the beach for a much needed vacation. We leave tomorrow morning to visit JB's parents in a sister state then leave from there Sunday morning headed South to Coast.

Our plans are to stay til Thursday, however, Ike may have other plans for us.

I look forward to no phone, no computer, no rushing, sea breezes, and fun with my family. The boys weren't quite 2 the last time we went, so I am excited to see them play as they are older for this trip and able to communicate much better.

Please pray for traveling mercies and that we can overcome these nagging sinus/cold issues.

I post pics when we return.

Until next time, I'm gonna be beach bum, HB

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Sweet Pea

A few years ago, one of my dear friend, Steph, introduced me to the wonderful fragrance of Sweet Pea by Bath & Body Works. Since then, this has become "one of my favorite things".

I recently treated myself to several of the Sweet Pea products but my favorite of them is Daily High Lather Scrub. It leaves me smelling sweet, fresh and my skin is soft from the lathery scrub.

Until next time, HB

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Fur Babies in the wake of Gustav

One of the events that horrified me during Katrina was seeing on the news all the pets that had to be left behind b/c they were not allowed on the buses when the evacuees were being picked up. It was also sad that people had to choose not to leave because of their pets. I don't know that I could have left my beloved Gizmo behind.

I am relieved to know that they are better prepared to take care of the fur babies for this storm. To read on the preparations, you may visit the ASPCA website.

I know to some that animals are merely just that, animals. But to me, they are part of families. And to have to leave one behind not knowing what will happen to him/her, is devastating and can have a life long emotional effect to those that loved and cared for them.

Just wanted to share my relief for what it's worth.

Until next time, HB

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Show Me the Money...

I have recently joined "The Grocery Game" after reading several blogs of friends that have joined and attested to saving money. I also have several friends that joined and proclaimed of it assistance to saving money on groceries.

I will try my best to explain how it works.

You subscribe to grocery store lists in your zip code for a fee that is paid every 8 weeks. These lists inform you of the week's sales and also let you know if there are coupons from your Sunday paper or on-line that will help you save even more. The lists are coded to let you know if the item is at a "rock bottom" price. It also codes items that are good to buy as "stock items" due to the great price...this keeps you from having to pay full price in the future.

I have been playing for the past 4 weeks as a trial for $1.00. I have greatly enjoyed the challenge and most of all..saving money. I subscribe to WalGreens, Rite-Aid, CVS and Kroger. I have found that I shop more at WalGreens and Kroger than CVS and Rite-Aid. So I may unsubscribe to those stores to lower my 8 week fee. The main attraction for me is being informed of the sale items and if there is a coupon when otherwise I wouldn't be aware. I have started to pick up a Sunday paper for the coupons and it's become my Sunday afternoon ritual to clip and then compare to my Grocery Game lists.

I have also been reviewing Brookshire's circular via their website. I have shopped there for several items at cheaper that I would normally have bought at Wal-Mart. (note--Brookshire's is not on my Grocery Game list, I have reviewed their sales on my own)

Here are few of my savings:
August 17th-
WalGreens...I bought $39.57 of groceries for $18.69.
Kroger...I bought $65.45 of groceries for $43.82.
Brookshire's...I bought $16.64 of groceries for $11. 91.
All together I bought $121.66 for $74.42 with a savings of $47.24

August 24th-
WalGreens...I bought $30.30 of groceries for $15.78
Kroger...I bought $24.62 of groceries for $14.67
Brookshires...I bought $37.88 of groceries for $22.83
All together I bought $92.80 of groceries for $53.28 with a savings of $37.52

Total savings for the past 2 weeks I bought $214. 46 of groceries for $127.70. Saving a grand total of $84.76

We had been spending about $200.00 every 2 weeks on groceries. As you can see, The Grocery Game helped us save on our groceries.

I hope to continue to learn more and become a better shopper...practice makes perfect. With my mother as a teacher when I was growing up and the help of The Grocery Game, I hope to get our groceries down by half.

Before children, JB and I used to shop all the different grocery stores for savings. But obviously with children (2 at once) time just hasn't allowed me to grab a circular from all the different stores. With The Grocery Game help, I have all the info in one place, I make my list, and then go shopping instead of heading to Wal-Mart thinking I'm getting the best deals. Now, don't get me wrong, I still have to go to Wal-Mart for some items that are a must and aren't on sale nor have a coupon. But for now, at least I know where the best deals are.

If you are interested in joining The Grocery Game, email me or leave a message. You can earn free weeks when you refer someone and they join.

Other ways we have cut back:
I haven't used our dryer in 2 months. I have been hanging our clothes on drying racks to dry. We haven't used our dishwasher as often, opting to hand wash dishes. We have oscillating fans in the den, our bedroom and the boys' room. I keep the fan in the den on during the day and only using the other 2 at night. I've kept our blinds closed to keep the direct sunlight out. I know we may look like recluses but it's helped keep the rooms cooler.

We aren't in any financial trouble and I refuse to become a "cheap person" we are just trying to be more frugal and diligent to save when possible.

I'm sure there are many other ways to save and I'm sure there are some readers who are doing more and better. I am still learning and hope with more practice, I will become a pro.

Until next time, Show Me the Money, HB

Monday, August 18, 2008

Welcome, Smurfs

Well, the Smurfs temporarily built and moved into our yard a few days last week. That was until JB mowed over their village with the lawn more. It was a pleasure having them visit for the few days they were here. They have since had to move on to safer frontier.

Until next time, HB

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

A New Season

We have entered a new season in our season that is. Well, such as it is at age 3.

The boys started to St. Matthew's pre-school "program" today. It's more than a MMO but not as extensive as an actual school day. They will be going for 3 hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays with the option of lunch bunch. Although it's only 3 hours, it will give me some time to do errands that are easier done without 3 year old toddlers. I will also have a little more time to devote to monogramming and cleaning this house.

They don't allow the parents to walk the children to their room. Instead, we drop them off in car pool while teachers walk them to their rooms. A little intimidating even for me but my little boys were brave men this morning. They went to the unknown with no tears. I had already told them that Mommy would not be taking them to their room in hopes that some preparation would eliminate some of the uncertainty.

Pappaw and I picked them up and they came out with smiles. After loading them up and off to home, I asked about their day with little response.

They said that they played in the gym and road bikes. CB said that he wanted to go back while BB said that "he wanted to go back later, not just yet".

I asked if they got in any trouble. BB shook his head no while CB nodded his head yes. I asked if he got put in time out to which he replied with a yes nod. I asked BB if CB was put in timeout and he too said yes. But the story as to why seems to change and grow bigger. BB even told me at one time CB got a "panking". When I asked who spanked CB, he replied "me".

So I don't think there was any timeout and I know for certain there were no "pankings".

The boys held hands when walking into school. I got a quick picture. Sorry for the poor quality. It was so humid that my lens fogged up and with hurried mammas waiting on me to get my car out of the way, I just couldn't take the time to get a better one.

Until next time, HB

Friday, August 8, 2008

Milestones from 2 to 3

The boys experienced some big boy milestones from age 2 to 3. Since I've done a poor job of writing these in their books, I'll list them here to at least have them recorded somewhere for future memories.

They both learned to ride their tri-cylces this past spring.

They transitioned from their cribs to their real beds this past December (2007)
BB sleeps in a double while CB sleeps in a single. The single will eventually be bunked on top of the double.

They quit using their "mouth pieces" AKA passys this summer (June 2008)

They participated and enjoyed VBS (June 2008). They actually remember their activities and songs.

And the biggest of all...They were potty trained before they were 3!!! Grant it, it was like a few weeks before they turned 3, but still worth being proud of.

The biggest for JB...they began recognizing "Roll Tide" symbols and mascots.

We are so blessed to have gotten a healthy 3 year old check up. Both have had a "knot" on the side of their necks that has not gone away..but blood work was normal and the dr. says it's just a slightly enlarged lymph node, nothing to worry about. They are average for their weight and height.


Thank Youp=Thank You


Until next time, Don't Blink, you'll miss it, HB

Monday, August 4, 2008

The Big Ones that DIDN'T Get Away

Those that know my dad well, know that he is an avid fisherman. He lives to fish and fishes to live. Seriously, if we every have a drought or famine, he could feed his family for awhile with all the fish he has in his freezer. Cock of the Walk doesn't have anything on him when it comes to catfish. Lately, he has been jug fishing for catfish. He has caught 2 big ones and many average sizes. I've posted pics of the 2 that didn't get away. These were caught at separate fishing trips.

Finally, some fish tales that are believable!

Until next time, HB