Thursday, February 28, 2008

Frugal Friday

It seems that between maintaining a home and two vehicles that there are always needed repairs. It's been one thing after another lately. This week it was the car.
The passenger window had been making a terrible "crunchy" sound for a while and it finally quit working completely and happened to be about four inches down! A couple of days later the fan on the heat would only blow on five, the highest setting. I guess this could be considered a good thing with the window being stuck open in winter;)
The car was due for an inspection and oil change, so we sent it in to be fixed and serviced. Well to get to the point of the story, we got a call from the mechanic that the repairs and maintenance work would total around $700. I didn't know what to say, but in my mind I was thinking they could replace the whole door plus some for that amount of money! I had my husband call him back from work. He asked if this issues were a common problem. The mechanic checked with his supervisor and told us that the repairs would be covered by GM.This was great news! We paid for the maintenance work only.
It's a good idea to develop a good relationship with the dealership or your local mechanic. Don't be afraid to ask questions. I think in this case since we were dealing with the service dept. of a Chevrolet dealership where we have our vehicles serviced regularly they were eager to please to keep our business. God is faithful in the ways he provides in big and small ways everyday.

Read Frugal Friday for more tips!
Photo from

Monday, February 25, 2008

Making Your Home a Haven Monday

Crystal at Biblical Womanhood challenged her readers to pick a drawer to organize today. I had been wanting to do the kid's bathroom drawers for a couple of weeks. I would not have done this today without her encouragement.


After.....If anyone has any suggestions for organizing lots of toothbrushes please comment:)

Check out more at

Menu Plan Monday

The last week of the month can be a challenge to plan because of lack of money in the budget and enthusiasm to cook! I am already trying to plan for March. I am hoping to plan dinners that will include freezer meals. I will shop and cook the first week and freeze some of our favorites. We will be trying several new recipes also while trying to eat healthy, stay within our budget, and keep everyone satisfied. Wow, makes me tired just typing about it. Hopefully the planing will help make meals easier with our new routine with baby Rose!

Breakfasts: biscuits and gravy, cereal, oatmeal, toast, bananas

Lunch: homemade mac'n cheese, grilled cheese, pbj, crock pot beans and cornbread


Monday: breakfast casserole (with turkey sausage and cheddar cheese), orange slices

Tuesday: baked chicken, rice, green beans

Wednesday: whole wheat penne with white sauce, salad

Thursday: McD's (errand day and check-up for Rose)

Friday: pizza

Check out for more menus!

Friday, February 22, 2008

Happy Birthday Anna-Kate

In honor of your birthday, here are nine of our favorite things about you...
**your big smile
**your positive attitude
**the way you love everyone around you
**you make the sweetest cards
**your beautiful smiling eyes
**the way you play with your younger sisters
**the way you squeal over animals
**your laugh makes us all happy:)
**your eagerness to help
Anna-Kate, we love you very much and we are so thankful that God gave us such a sweet and happy girl. Happy 9th Birthday!!!!!

Our Granola Recipe

(with approximate cost)

1 cup honey (have used browm sugar) $1.00

1 stick of butter (have used canola oil) $0.50

6-7 cups old fashioned oatmeal $1.50

1/2 box Multi-grain flakes (great value brand from W-mart) $0.75

Cinnamon $0.05

Total $3.80

Melt the honey and butter together in a large stock pot over low to medium heat. Add in oats and flakes and toss to mix well. Spread onto cookie sheets. Sprinkle with cinnamon. Bake at 250 degrees for 20 to thirty minutes, until toasty and slightly browned. Let cool completely(try to keep your kids from eating half of it before you can get it put away:) Store in an airtight container.

Some great ideas for add-ins, after it is baked


nuts or seeds


banana chips (with walnuts makes a great banana bread flavor)

Another tip for larger families...Use a 1/2 cup measuring cup to help the kids practice portion control. This is such a hit around our house it rarely last more that a couple of days!
Visit The Natural Mommy for the recipe swap!

Monday, February 18, 2008

Menu Plan Monday

Breakfast-Oatmeal, Bagels with cream cheese, cereal

Lunch-Grilled Cheese, PBJ, Apples and Oranges, Available leftovers


Monday-Poppy Seed Chicken Casserole, Green Beans, Cornbread

Tuesday-Whole Wheat Pancakes, Turkey Sausage, Grape Juice

Wednesday-Whole Wheat Penne Pasta with Meat Sauce, Bread

Thursday-Baked Chicken, Rice and Brocolli



Saturday, February 16, 2008

Rose is One Month!

With Big Brother Samuel, see me smiling!
We visited Grand-Nanny today, she was so happy to see us!
Time goes by so quickly. Rose is doing very well as you can see. She is a very good baby, very easy to care for. There haven't been big changes or milestones the last couple of weeks, but here are some things we notice...
*she has lost some hair and it is a beatiful auburn red
*she has grown a little, of course:)
*she has gotten used to being changed and loves the changing table, she will just lay there and look around
*she also enjoys the swing more
*she is starting to coo at us. and sometimes just looks like she is about to break out in song!
Things are getting back to normal around the house. We are still working together to cook and clean, and keep the toddlers entertained. We are also easing back into our school routine.
While laying on the changing table one evening, Samuel was trying to teach Rose to say "hello". Sure enough she responded and he was so excited. I heard her coo, but not say "hello". He insisted that I quit what I was doing and pay attention. He said again to Rose, "Come on Ro-Ro say heelloo." She promptly responded "haa-ooo". So precious, I guess I shouldn't have doubted him:)

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Boys Earnin' Their Keep

Jacob age 14
Samuel age 12

Our neighbor had this tree fall in a terrible wind storm that came through our area last Sunday into Monday. He called to offer the job to Tommy and the boys before he called his professional tree man. Tommy was on a business trip, but Jacob eagerly and immediately called and accepted the challenge, knowing his Dad would approve.

I have hardly seen the boys the last few afternoons. They took this challenge seriously and have enjoyed hacking away at this tree and have done a great job at it. All their experience gathering and chopping wood with their Dad has really payed off. After the boys stripped the tree of all it's limbs and cleared all the brush, Tommy went over with the chainsaw and cut the tree into logs. The boys then took over again from there.

I have enjoyed watching them work and seeing their progress. They are growing into strong, able bodied young men.

Besides the fact that they love working with tools like their Craftsmen axes, doing a job like this allows them to be outside, get really dirty, have man hands, smell like a Christmas tree, and say things like...."I climbed and jumped out of a forty foot tree today." And "I jumped over a forty foot tree today!"

After this wood dries out, we will have some good firewood. The Lord has blessed us with opportunities to gather free wood all winter long!

Boys were designed and created to work and provide and we love to see ours doing so!

By the way, Samuel is saving money to buy a new bike and Jacob, he just likes to save!

Abby and Anna Made Bread

Abby age10, Anna age 8, and Wendy age 3

Abby and I have talked for probably a year about teaching her to make homemade bread. Time really flies! We normally make whole wheat bread when we bake. Although taking time to grind flour is not very time consuming, it is something the girls are not confident about doing on their own yet. Our grinder is called a Whisper Mill, but it is very loud. Since I knew the girls would basically be "on their own" and I would be caring for Rose, we followed the recipe as it read and used unbleached white flour. This is a delicious and wholesome recipe with the added oatmeal.

Abby and Anna did a great job as you can see. Wendy watched and "helped" her very patient big sisters. Don't ever think your kids are too young to learn to help in big ways! We had one loaf for dinner and finished the rest for breakfast the next morning.

Here is the link to the recipe we used.

Approximate cost for two loaves...$1.55
Read more over at Crystal's Frugal Friday

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Two Week Check-up With Hannah

This is Hannah, our midwife. We have grown to love and appreciate her very much. She said Rose sounds good!
Rose weighs 10 pounds 3 ounces. It was good to know that she is gaining well.
Here is the pretty pink complexion that helped us choose her name! I can barely express with words how thankful and blessed I feel when I look at Rose and all of the children each day. God is so good to us.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Two Weeks Old

I am very content and sweet.

I love my mama. (and she loves me)

I love to look around my new home and listen to my brothers and sisters.

I LOVE to eat.

I don't like to have my diaper changed, I cry even though mama uses warm wipes.

I like it even less when mama has to change my clothes and give me Burt's Bee's lotion because my skin is really dry.

I sleep well at night, usually two long stretches, I sleep with mama and daddy, bundled in my pink blanket. I sleep best when my arms are bundled snug in my blanket.

I am two weeks old already!