Smile for the Joy of Others

Smile for the Joy of Others

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Just a Few More Days...

til I kill myself trying to get in shape. I retired my membership from the Y several months ago due to the rising costs of gas and my business requiring more of my time. It was about a 30 minute drive one way to the "new Y" (as we called it). So it took an hour driving time just to work out. It was not very motivational to drive for an hour while working out for only 1 hour, if I was lucky to have that long. Also due to the drive time and other circumstances, JB was not able to join and participate in the benefits of Y.

Well, we are glad to say that we(JB and I both) have joined the new Courthouse that is located at what used to be Jitney. This is only 5 minutes from our house and is open 24- 6 1/2 (they aren't opened Sunday mornings).

Advantages....obviously closer therefore eliminating drive time and gas, more flexible hours, more exercise equipment as this facility is strictly for "working out", cost less, JB is able to benefit from this membership. child care, no pool or tennis, no individual tv's at each exercise equipment...not much else to "complain" about.

My parents have also joined as it, too, is closer for them than the Y.

I have gained some of my weight back since I quit working out and I can tell that I don't have as much energy. Needless to say, I am looking forward to getting back in shape and feeling better mentally and physically.

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Little Men After my own Heart

Those that have known me the longest and best, know that I love Peanuts...Snoopy, Linus, Charlie Brown and the Gang, that is...not the nuts.

My boys seem to be following my love for the Gang. They love for me to read the Snoopy books we have and they enjoy watching my old Snoopy cartoons, the Classics. I am glad to own all of them.

The other night, I was reading a Snoopy story to them and CB wanted to show me that he knew most of the characters. He pointed to each character as he named them...

Tarlie Bown
Pepperoni BKA...Peppermint Patty
He insists on calling her Pepperoni. I don't know what impresses me the most...the fact that he can recall most of the characters or that he can actually pronounce Pepperoni. Mind you, now, that he can't even fully pronouce Charlie Brown.

So Pepperoni it is for now. I don't try to change his mind...soon enough he will be speaking more like a grown child and I'll miss this little moments.

Until next time,

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Got Faith?

This is a blog that I have been wanting to write for sometime but every time I have sat to down to write it...something has happened that has prevented it. Now, those "somethings" pertain to what I want to write about.

I was introduced to a blog through a fellow blogging friend titled The Confessions of a CF Husband. I can't even begin to tell you everything there is to know about this blog only that it's written by a husband whose wife has CF. This blog is about his experiences as a "CF Husband" while his wife undergoes a double lung transplant after an emergency c-section to deliver their little girl at about 24 weeks. Trust me, you will just have to read it yourself to experience his awesome faith and peace in Christ and his love for his bride and little girl. I could do no justice in trying to describe it. When I read it, there were times I found my faith to be too small. Would I have the same faith and trust that he does during such a trying situation and circumstance?

Well, then I ran up on the blog Bring the Rain...The story of Audrey Caroline.
This blog is by Angie Smith, the wife of Todd Smith...lead singer of Selah. If anyone were to ask for a list of musicians whose songs most inspire me, Selah would be on that list. JB and I have been blessed to see them twice in concert and we own all of their CD's. I love them, I love their songs, I love their heart, and I love their ministry. (I digress...only to say that this blog is really special to me as I find Selah's messages of faith, hope, love and peace to be so near to my heart). Again, I could do no justice in trying to describe this blog. Angie blogs about their experience in losing a child shortly after birth. She writes with such a personal affect that you feel like you know her after reading the first post. And by the time you read all of her posts, you find yourself grieving for them as if they were someone you've known all your life. I, again, reflect after reading her experiences of such awesome faith and trust in Christ, on my faith and find it so little. Her faith will leave you reflecting your own and realizing just how much we have to rely on Christ to get us through such tragedy.

So, I have "Got Faith?" in the back of my mind to write thinking, "I'll finally write about that tonight". As history seems to repeat itself, I read about the Chapman family and the tragedy they have experienced. Steven Curtis Chapman ranks up there with Selah for me. He, too, is a musician that I admire through his faith filled songs, life and ministry. He and his family exemplify the love of Christ in a way that you can't help but know the love they have for Him. JB and I had one of his songs in our wedding and we own most if not all of his CD's. You will find that most of my I-Pod consists of songs from him and Selah. I have no doubt that their faith is strong enough to get them through this tragedy and that their faith through this tragedy will be another testament of their love for Christ for the rest of the world to witness.

All of these situations have me reflecting the strength of my it strong enough to sustain me in such tragedies I have mentioned above...or is so weak that when such storms come, I will only retreat from God and try to find my own shelter. All I can do is pray that it's strong enough until I have to actually experience those storms. And as Christians, we will experience some type of storm(s) in our lifetime...not to harm us but only to prosper make us stronger in Christ and for Him to be glorified for all the world to see our love for Him and His never-ending, unfailing, ever faithful love for us.

You see, I like to be in control and in the storms of life, I don't have control. And to keep me honest with my readers...I don't like not being in control.
It's an area in my spiritual life that I battle. I find it hard to simply "give control" over. I want it to work my way, the way I have planned, so that nothing takes me off guard or becomes a big SURPRISE. While I know that God is in control and that nothing surprises Him, at times for me, it's hard to actually live it.

I have been blessed reading the above blogs. They are an assurance of God's love for his people. And the writers are an assurance of faith and peace that I hope to exemplify during my life's storms. I encourage you to read them when you have time...i emphasize "when you have time" because you would do yourself a disservice to just skim through them. I must warn you...have plenty of tissue around.

Until next time, HB

PS...Here is a video of the Smith's story but don't just watch that without reading their blog. I promise, that you will be equally blessed in both

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Food for Dogs

I read this on my MSN homepage and thought I would share it. Some of you will not find it interesting as you don't have pets and some will find it informative as I did. However, I merely cut & pasted this, editing other info. This is not meant to be as a "prescription" diet and you should always ask your vet concerning food matters when it comes to your pets. I say this because I don't want anyone emailing me that I am wrong or that your pet had a reaction when you fed him some "good food". This is strictly for informative reasons. I am not a vet, don't plan to become don't take this as medical vet advise from me.

Bad Food:

They contain a toxic component called persin, which can damage heart, lung and other tissue in many animals. This fruit is very toxic to dogs, cats and most animals.

Alcoholic beverages can cause the same damage to an animal's liver and brain as they cause in humans. But the effects can be deadly on animals since they are much smaller than us. The smaller the animal, the more deadly the effects can be. Even a small amount of alcohol may cause vomiting and damage the liver and brain.

Walnuts and macadamia nuts are especially toxic. Effects can be anything from vomiting to paralysis to death. Within 12 hours of eating the nuts, pets start to develop symptoms such as an inability to stand or walk, vomiting, hyperthermia (elevated body temperature), weakness, and an elevated heart rate. These symptoms can be even worse if your dog eats some chocolate with the nuts. The effect can cause kidney failure, often leading to death.

Chocolate contains theobromine, which can kill your pet if eaten in large quantities. Dark and unsweetened baking chocolates are especially dangerous. Giving your pup a piece of chocolate cake or even letting him lick the chocolate icing on the cake could cause him to become ill. Theobromine can also cause a dog or cat's heart to beat very rapidly or irregularly, which could result in death if the pet is exercising or overly active.

Candy or anything containing Xylitol (a common sweetener found in some diet products) can cause a sudden drop in an animal's blood sugar, loss of coordination and seizures. If left untreated, the animal could die.

Coffee, tea or any product that contains caffeine stimulates an animal's central nervous and cardiac systems. This can lead to restlessness, heart palpitations and death, depending on how much the animal consumes.

Grapes & Raisins
Grapes and raisins can lead to kidney failure in dogs. As little as a single serving of raisins can kill them. And the effects are cumulative, which means that even if a dog eats just one or two grapes or raisins regularly, the toxin that builds in his system will eventually kill him.

Onions are another common food that can be highly toxic to pets. They can destroy an animal's red blood cells and lead to anemia, weakness and breathing difficulties. Their effects are also cumulative over time.

Good Foods: Please keep in mind that you should consult your vet before putting your pet on a human food diet. Also, remember human foods should be given in moderation and if it causes gastro problems for animal, stop giving it.

Lean Meats
Any cooked lean meat should be fine for most dogs. High-fat meats, chicken skin and fat from steaks or roasts are not recommended. Ingestion may lead to gastrointestinal upset or even pancreatitis. This can be a very painful condition for dogs. In addition, most companion animals do not need extra fat in their diets. Never give your pet meat with the bone in it. Animals can choke on the bones, and they can splinter as well.

Carrot sticks, green beans, cucumber slices and zucchini slices are all OK.

Apple slices, orange slices, bananas and watermelon are all OK. Make sure the seeds have been taken out; seeds are not good for your pet!

Baked Potatoes
Plain baked potatoes are fine, but make sure they are cooked — no unripe potatoes or potato plants.

Plain cooked bread is fine; just make sure there are no nuts or raisins added.

Rice & Pasta
Plain, cooked pasta and white rice are OK. Often veterinarians recommend plain rice with some boiled chicken when gastrointestinal upset is present.

Monday, May 19, 2008

What a Weekend!

Well, we made it through our busy weekend. Although it was exhausting, it was very worth it.

Saturday went very well. The turn out was great and Shelley and I did well. I enjoyed meeting new customers and seeing returning customers. Thanks to all of you who supported this event and my business.

Let me back up just a minute. Not all of Saturday went well. You remember me saying that I couldn't wait for the boys to get their pictures made. Well, if I had known then what I know now...I would have been more than happy to wait. They did terrible. It was crying, hiding their faces, rubbing their eyes til they were red and just refusing to smile. I was so disappointed and to be honest with y'all, just down right frustrated with them. I know they are young but it is so disappointing to prepare for something and then for them to act like they did. It was no coaxing them to smile or to put their hands down. I guess they were scared of the camera equipment and the only defense mechanism they knew was to hide their face with tears and their hands. The whole time they were in front of the camera they were rubbing their eyes and putting their hands in their mouth. No amount of pleading and begging to put their hands down would work...the only response was "I don't want to" in a whiny, scared voice. I finally said enough is enough...I certainly couldn't disciple to make them obey, that would only make matters work. I think she may have a gotten a few shots with their hands down and maybe a smile along with red eyes and disheveled hair from hiding their faces. But with 2, while one was smiling the other was crying. I still have issues about this photo-shoot, so I must stop writing about it and move on to happier times.

JB's presentation on Sunday was great. I am so proud of him and his ability to speak to a crowd with such a passion. We enjoyed meeting the members of the church and spending time with my family. The boys did ok. They both screamed when I left them in their Sunday School room but soon calmed down. They slept well for the 8 hours they were asleep and took a decent nap that afternoon. I on the other hand, didn't sleep much at all. It's kinda hard when sharing a bed with 2 toddlers.

We didn't get back until about 10:30 Sunday night. The boys fell asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillow...same for me.

As exhausting as it was, we were blessed to have experienced it.

Until next time, HB

The Bathtub Test

During a visit to the mental asylum, a visitor asked the Director, "How do you determine whether or not a patient should be institutionalized?"

"Well," said the Director, "we fill up a bathtub, then we offer a teaspoon, a teacup and a bucket to the patient and ask him or her to empty the bathtub."

"Oh, I understand," said the visitor. "A normal person would use the bucketbecause it's bigger than the spoon or the teacup."

''No," said the Director. "A normal person would pull the plug. Do you want a bed near the window?"

I received this through email from my dad...anyone care to join me?

Until next time, HB

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

A Busy Weekend

We have an upcoming busy weekend for the 4 of us. Saturday I will be selling at an arts and crafts show that will feature the Shake, Rattle and Roll Car Show that has brought in about 2,000 spectators.

I will be setting the booth up on Friday no earlier than 9:00 P.M. and then back Saturday morning about 8:30 provided that all goes well the night before with setting up.

The boys have an appointment to get their pictures made at 9:50 with the photographer that will be there. I can't wait for this. Jeanelle does a great job and we haven't had any professional pictures in awhile. If you are interested in making an appointment email or comment me for more details. She told me that the time slots are filling up fast. Walk-ins are welcome but appointments have 1st priority.

After the show is over and all my items are back home, we head south out of town. JB will be speaking at 1st Baptist Church of Summit. He will be preaching and teaching on financial matters during the Sunday School hour and worship hour. He will be presenting a workshop during their evening worship hour.

My Grandmother lives in the area so we will be staying with her Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. I do ask that you pray for JB as he speaks what God has lead him to say and that the congregation will be receptive to God's financial plans for His people. Also pray that the boys will adjust Saturday to a different bed so that they will be rested for church the next day. They typically do not sleep well in places other than their own bed and bedroom. Sunday will be a long for us all. And pray for my tends to wear thin when our schedule is "off". JB will not be able to help much as he will be focused on his matters.

If all goes planned, we will not be home til late Sunday night.

Regardless of the busy weekend, I pray most that God will be glorified at Saturday's event as it has been planned to raise money for mission trips and that He will be glorified Sunday as JB speaks His words.

Until next time, HB

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Mother's Day, Everyday?

Anyone want to 2nd my motion regarding Mother's Day Everyday?

I had a great day this past Sunday. I was serenaded to "Happy Mother's Day" to the tune of Happy Birthday. I was then given a generous gift card to a local Day Spa. I can not wait to use it. With gifts like this, who wouldn't want Mother's Day to be everyday.

Thanks to my Boys...all 3 of them for loving me in spite of some of my emotional mom moments.

Until next time, HB

Monday, May 12, 2008

What's for Supper?

Here is a blog that some of you might enjoy. Especially if like cooking and trying new recipes.

What's Cooking with CrestWomen?


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Spring Shopping Event

You are all invited to a Spring Shopping Event!

Saturday, May 17th
Ridgecrest Baptist Church
9:00 to 3:00

This event will also feature the Shake, Rattle and Roll Classic Car show, "Kid's Zone", live entertainment, and food.

As you can see this event will be fun for the whole family. Moms and wives can shop, husbands and dads can enjoy classic cars, and the children can play. There will be food to eat and live entertainment to enjoy.

Over 30 vendors will be set up in the Ridgecrest Activities Center (RAC) BKA the gym.

Hollypops Monogrammed Gifts and Snookledoodles will have a booth with custom clothing for your little blessings. I have been working on a new line of t-shirts that I will make their debut at this event. This line is called "The Living Word" line. It features cute appliques with scripture. These t-shirts will allow your sweeties to show off God's promises.

Faith InDeed is sponsoring the Spring Shopping Event and all proceeds will go towards Mission Trips sponsored by Ridgecrest Baptist Church.

Hope to you all there!

Friday, May 2, 2008

Balancing Your Life

“Women need real moments of solitude and self-reflection to balance out how much of ourselves we give away.”~Barbara De Angelis

I'm sure I am "preaching to the choir" when I speak of this subject. I know I am amongst many moms, both working and stay home moms, when I talk about the struggle of balancing your life.

There are days that this struggle just doesn't seem so hard than there are days that it's the hardest to fight. Some moms feel the need to volunteer and participate to some degree in most if not all of their children's activities. Meaning (and understandably so), they feel the need to be apart of the activity instead of sitting back and watching.

Although, my children are not at the age of "outside the home" activities, I find myself struggling with activities inside my home. When I became a SAHM (stay at home mom), I found myself yearning for something more. A hobby, a goal, an interest that allowed me to do more than wipe booties and noses. Don't get me wrong, I am so blessed to be able to stay home, regardless of the many, many sacrifices that we have had to make. And I would rather be the one to wipe those little booties and noses. However, there is apart of me that enjoys being creative and accomplishing other goals that are "mine and mine alone". It's an outlet for me. It allows me to be someone other than Momma, wife, friend, daughter, is allows me to be Me.

Here is the struggle. When I take time to do my activities (monogramming, reading, exercising, blogging, etc.), I have to sacrifice time from my family. If I focus only on my desires, hobbies, and projects during the day my children and housework suffer leaving a feeling of guilt that tends to take away the enjoyment of my hobbies.

When I partake in my projects when JB gets home (leaving him to watch the boys), the supper doesn't get cook and I give up family time...all 4 of us playing together. When I partake in my projects after the boys go down for bed, then I sacrifice spending time with my husband.

And for me, trying to balance all this time is a hard, emotional struggle. I wrestle with just quitting all my projects (monogramming, reading, exercising, blogging, etc). In doing this, I am able to devote more time to God, family and household chores, respectfully. I release all feelings of guilt, in that, our house is not neglected, the TV is not babysitting my children as I try to get a few monogramming projects done, and my husband gets the time he deserves. I don't go to bed with dread of waking up to a dirty, messed up house that I was not able to get to the day before. My dirty and clean clothes will not lay in ruins on the floor of the laundry room, bedroom and den. My dishes won't be piled to ceiling waiting for JB to take care of them. And furthermore, JB would come home to cleaner more organized house after a hard day at work, which is what hard working husbands deserve, righ?

However, if I give up all my projects, I sacrifice time to and for myself. I enjoy coming back to my sewing room after everyone has gone to bed. All is phones are ringing, the dog is not barking at every movement outside the front door, no children are screaming for the same toy or from aggravating each other, no Dora, Diego, Backyardigans, Wonder Pets and all other annoying children's shows are blaring in the background, no one is competing for my attention, I am able to focus on what I enjoy doing for myself. When I am focused on my fun projects it rejuvenates me, it gives me a sense of accomplishment, it allows me to be creative, it's relaxing even when it can be time sensitive, and it gives me a challenge that only I can conquer.

Some suggest putting the boys in a MMO (mother's morning out program). I would love nothing more than to be able, however, we just cannot afford it at this time. Most programs are not sensitive to multiple placements in that they don't give discounts for multiples. And those that are less expensive (yet still costly) are usually only 3 hours for 2 days a week. Now this may sound picky, but after you get yourself dressed, 2 toddlers dressed, driving time to the facility...3 hours is just not that much time to get all that needs to be done. Moms use MMO time to take of household needs, her needs, and anything else that comes up. 3 hours can't even guarantee enough time for a doctor's appointment much less an appointment plus any of the following that may need to be taken care shopping, haircut, and cleaning house, shopping, etc.

And weekends are no longer a refuge for rest and relaxation. We find that just about all our weekends are scheduled with something leaving no rest for the weary and not much time for our family of 4 to just spend together. Mondays are spent recuperating from busy weekends.

So back to the reason for writing this blog, it's a struggle to balance and we haven't even begun outside the home activities. The only conclusion that I am able to rationalize is that this is just the way our life is at this point in time. It may get better or it may get more complicated, but I don't think the struggle ever becomes easy.

“Just as your car runs more smoothly and requires less energy to go faster and farther when the wheels are in perfect alignment, you perform better when your thoughts, feelings, emotions, goals, and values are in balance.” ~Brian Tracy

Until next time, HB