Friday, November 30, 2012

Thankful Post #30

I save the best for last!

I am SO thankful for God, my Lord and Savior.  

He is always there when I need to talk.

He is there to correct and discipline me when I get out of line and out of focus.

God never leaves me, never forgets me, never ignores me.

When I need to cry on a shoulder, He is there.

When I need to complain, He is there.

When I just need a hug and lap to curl up in, He is there.

The best part of God, is that he made the ultimate sacrifice and allowed his Son to be treated like a criminal which meant that Jesus had to die on a cross.  This sacrifice allows me to be forgiven for all my sins and have an eternal life in Heaven.

I love my God!

Thankful Post #29

I am thankful for my mommy friends.

Tonight I was able to go eat with other mommies at our monthly Mom's Night Out.  

It was so good to get out, socialize and have many laughs amongst friends who share a lifestyle similar to mine.

It sure helped to get my mind off of things that were stressful this week.

Thankful Post #28

I am thankful for a quiet, uneventful evening.

The kids and I went to church and while the girls were all in their respective classes, Jordan and I hung out in a room by ourselves.  His cough was still lingering and I didn't want to comprise his immune system or expose him to others.

While he hung out with me, he was a great at helping me get ready for my craft for preschool class on Sunday.  He cut out lots and lots of tissue paper squares so the boys and girls can make wreaths.

While we were working, we could hear Hallie Jo next door in her class.  She was getting frustrated with a classmate and we could hear her raising her voice.  Each time Hallie Jo hollered, I noticed Jordan would tense up.  He was ready to go next door and tear the other kid apart for upsetting his sister.  I thought I might have to hold him back.  I just love that "protect my sister" attitude.  He makes me proud!

Thankful Post #27

I am thankful for great doctors.  

Jordan has been running a fever since Saturday along with a dry cough.  We had it slightly under control with Tylenol but he hadn't gotten better so I made the call to our pediatrician and we were able to get Jordan in the afternoon.
I just love our pediatrician!  He is so caring and he really tries to get to know his patients and their families.  He took the time to listen to Jimmy and I as well as Jordan who of course was full of information.  After listening to his heart and lungs and then checking Jordan's throat and ears, it was determined that he might possible have slight bronchitis so a small 3-day dosage to combat anything starting.

Jordan seemed to be more like himself while at the doctor's office and long after.  I think he might have needed to get out of the house and get some fresh air.


Thankful Post #26

Today I am thankful for FREE Redbox codes.  I received a text this morning to rent a movie for one night.  

In the last few months, our local Dollar General got their own Redbox machine.  It is so nice to go only a couple of miles to get a movie.  I realize that we don't see the most recent movies but we have seen some good ones.

Tonight, Jimmy stopped and got Snow White and the Huntsman.  It has a pretty predictable storyline but the special effects were great and it ended up being a good movie.

I mean, who could go wrong with "true love's kiss?"


Sunday, November 25, 2012

Thankful Post #25

I am thankful for a God who never leaves his people.

Through my struggles this past week, I knew in my heart that God knows the history, the present and the future of the entire universe but I was not allowing my heart to believe at the time.  I was bearing things that only my God can control.

Jimmy and I watched Facing the Giants tonight.  That was the first time I had watched that movie and it was good for my heart.  No matter what, Coach Taylor and his wife stood on God's promise to never forsake them.  God proved once again he is the ONE who controls all things by not only providing what they needed but provided over and beyond.

What a great foundation to stand on!  God may allow us to struggle or he may choose to provide more than we are asking but no matter what, he will provide what we need.

Whatever God's plan is, it is the perfect plan!


Thankful Post #24

I am thankful for an additional day of Thanksgiving celebration.

My parents came to our house today to celebrate with us.  When you only have two others joining you that know you well, I do not feel as if I have to rush to get everything done at an exact time.  We ate a late but VERY yummy lunch.

After lunch, we all gathered together to watch Bedlam, OU vs. OSU.  Our Pokes did not win but what a game it was!  It was back and forth, exciting and exactly what a bedlam is all about.

Ride 'em Cowboys!  Go Pokes!


Thankful Post #23

I thankful for a day to relax from Thanksgiving prep and do a little bit of online shopping.

I got a few of the kids presents ordered.  They are not the biggest and best according to the television advertisements but I know they will love them.  I love that I got a great deal on all but two of them and those two weren't outrageous.

I was also pleased that I found a Living Social deal for photo calendars that I make every year for two gifts.

The last thing I found was a link to a custom card site that was having 75% off Christmas cards.  I got a volume discount for 75 cards and then another $111 off of my total.  I can't wait to get them and get them addressed and sent out.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thankful Post #22

Today we were able to spend good quality time with extended family.  We enjoyed dinner with Jimmy's sister and brother-in-law and their family.  This included their two kids, their spouses and three kids each.  There was also Jimmy's aunt as well as Jimmy's brother and his girlfriend.  

We had a packed house and beautiful weather.  The kids were able to spend a good amount of time playing outside.  I loved being able to sit down and just fellowship as well as watching the kids all have a good time.  We made good memories today!

Thankful Post #21

This past Sunday, in the middle of my breakdown (See my Thankful Post #18), we had a great blessing.  Our family was able to tithe for the first time in a couple of years.  We are going to be able to tithe again this week.

This has been heavy on my heart for a good long time and I was so excited that I was able to give back to the One who provides for everything we have.  It is only a small amount that he requests that we give to him to further his kingdom.

Thankful Post #20

Earlier this month, Jimmy approached me and said that he felt God leading to expand his business.  He has been self-employed and working on his own since 2004.  Some months have been lean to say the least but we never have gone hungry or have we been homeless.

Before the election, he did some job searching and one opportunity which we all thought was going to pan out wasn't in God's plan for our family.  Jimmy tried a few other places and recruiters but God shut the door on each one of them.

Jimmy really feels God leading to move his business to a prominent location where it should bring in more business.  Of course this means a monthly rent.  I couldn't say no since Jimmy is the leader of our family but it sure added worry to my mind.

God has blessed us this month with extra business in which we could pay the deposit and first month's rent.  God also allowed us to have a great business landlord who is willing to take our rent on a month-to-month basis and his current location is still available if we need to move back.

I am thankful for a God-fearing husband that takes the time to pray and listen to God in how to lead and provide for his family.

Thankful Post #19

We had a family from church call us Saturday night as they were leaving to go out of town for Thanksgiving.  They wanted to share with us things from their refrigerator and freezer that would have otherwise gone bad while they are gone.

This was a huge, unexpected blessing that helped with the grocery bill this week.  It was also a blessing for Jimmy and the kids to have something for dinner when I was in the state of mind to function properly.

Thank you to that sweet family.

Thankful Post #18

I am so thankful for a few select friends that God placed in the right spot this week.  I would not have been able to function without Bonnie, Annette, Susan and April.

I had read early this week about some possible UN treaties that could be ratified during the lame duck session that were a big concern for all families in the United States.  I did what I could by sharing the information and asking others to please read and make an informed decision.  I also asked if they felt led to please contact their senators and ask them to stand against the ratification.

After sharing, I should have never went on a search.  It was a dumb decision on my part.  I started trying to find anything I could read about what other countries have done after ratifying the same treaties.  I did not find positive things at all.  Added to this, I started looking at things about the fiscal cliff, Israel and other things I consider negative for our country's future.  The more I researched, the more I freaked out.  I was in such a state of worry and panic that I was not sleeping well or eating hardly at all.  I found I was having a very difficult time even making myself get out of bed in the morning.  I was reading my Bible constantly especially before trying to sleep and as soon as I woke up.  I was even waking up in the middle of the night and grabbing my Bible just to find something to ease my mind so I could try to sleep again.

By the time Sunday morning got here, I was a mess.  I was having a hard time letting my kids out of my sight and keeping it together as not to worry them.  Jimmy said that I shouldn't be so worry and to quit reading news about things I can't do anything about.  He was right but I just couldn't switch the worry off.  I broke down with full-body sobs during the worship service and all I knew to do was ask God for his help to rebuke Satan and this worry that he was using against me.  I knew that no matter what we face in our future, God will always be there but Satan had found a crack where he could get ahold of me and he had it. 

Susan, Annette, Bonnie and April have been praying and sharing many, many verses with me since.  I still have a few moments here and there but in about a week's time, I am almost back to my normal, cheery, upbeat self who I like so much better.  I am very blessed by God for these wonderful, Christian women who where there at just the right time.  I am also blessed that God used this rough week to make me get closer to him and to make my quiet time much more important than it had been in the past. 

Thankful Post #17

I am so thankful for our church and our small group.  First Baptist Church of Owasso has been more than a blessing for our family.  It has been our lifeline.

When our family decided to move here over 10 years ago, Jimmy and I knew we wanted a church that had both an Awana and FAITH program.  I started the "search" online first and I thought it was an easy solution since FBCO was the only area church with both programs.  Jimmy instantly said, "No, that church is too big."  He was comparing the size of the church he grew up to FBCO.  I quickly retorted, "Well, then we have to find a church with Awana and you can start a FAITH program."

After we got moved, we started visiting local churches and FBCO was included in these visits to give it a chance.  They were currently meeting at the local high school auditorium for worship while all the small group classes and children were at the church location.  They were in the process of building a new, bigger building.  It didn't take us too many visits to figure out that this was THE church God wanted us to be a part of.  We joined in November 2002 on the first day FBCO worship in their new and current location.  

We quickly got involved over the next few months with Jimmy participating in FAITH and eventually becoming the Sunday School director while I helped in AWANA and VBS and eventually became the director of both.  All this while adding two more kiddos to the mix.

We still continue to serve as youth and preschool teachers while enjoying our time with our adult small group.  The adults in our class are from all different backgrounds but we can come together to worship the one and only.  We have stood by each other when times are tight, resources low and just when we need to share a good laugh.  It is nice to have a group that you can be comfortable enough with to share.

Thankful Post #16

I am more than blessed to be a part of Heritage Homeschool Co-opOur family has been members of other groups throughout our homeschool adventure and this has been the best fit for us.

This is our fourth year as members, my third on the board and my first year as the president.  I love serving with my other board members, Stephanie, Annette, Shelley and Amy.  I couldn't possibly do a quarter of what our group does without these special ladies.

We do many things monthly such as a mom meeting, co-op classes, service projects, field trips, mom's night out, couples' only events and family fellowships.  Inbetween all of this, we share ideas, concerns, curriculum, and support as well as many hugs and laughs.

I know in my heart God put this group in our path at the right time and this adventure our family is on would not be as successful without our wonderful group.

Thankful Post #15

I am thankful for Patty who I have now known for over 10 years.

Patty is my nail tech who I met a few months after moving here.  I used to be a nail tech myself before Hannah was born and I am very picky about how my nails are done.  Patty "passed" all of my requirements.  She has seen all of my kids grow up and is always excited to see them when I bring them to an appointment with me.

Patty has always understood when finances are tight and I need to not visit for awhile. She just keeps me on the books until the next time I can come.  She has always been a great sounding board when I need to vent or share a concern.  Patty is one of those few close to me that I never have to worry about what she thinks of me no matter what I have to say.

Thankful post #14

I am thankful for our preschool and children's departments at church.

Our church has seen a lot of change in the last year but one of the best changes was Susan, Preschool Director.  Susan and her assistant, Loucinda work more than anyone can imagine to keep our preschool area clean and germ free.  They work diligently to make sure we are staffed with reliable workers at anytime, that children with allergies are not in danger and that the department continues to grow in training as needed.  I love serving in this department on Sunday mornings.

Our Children's Directors, Kolby and Mary Beth were one of the few that stayed the same through all the changes the church has recently encountered.  They are always a non-stop bundle of energy and work tirelessly to bring the right kind of practical lessons to our elementary children so they can see God's love and work in their own lives while encouraging those students to share God wonderful plan with others.  Time and time again I see another student who has stepped out of their comfort zone to share what many adults aren't willing to do.  This is our next generation and I couldn't be more proud.

Thankful Post #13

I am thankful for adults that are willing to be leaders or organized children's activities.

Jordan is a part of a great homeschool basketball league called Green Country Defenders.  The schedule for practices and the cost are perfect for our family.  The organizer, Stephanie drives to our area three times a week to lead three different practices for many different ages.  Jordan has been itching to start back in basketball since taking off a year last year.  We couldn't be more pleased with this opportunity.

Also this year, we found a local dance studio that opened up more classes this year and Hallie Jo is getting to take her first year of dance.  This studio is less expensive than any studio in the area and is it Christian based.  The dancers are not only taught dancing technique but there is also a value like "service" taught each week.  We don't have to worry about the music or choice of moves either like other studios.  This was definitely a blessing to be a part of this year.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Thankful Post #12

I am so thankful for the wonderful ladies I serve with on the Preschool Ministry Team at our church.  They are so creative and we all seem to work well together to bring our preschool department to what God has showed us it can be.

We had a meeting today that let us gather information together for our many, many ministry events happening in 2013.  We are having events for Moms/Kids, Dads/Kids, preschool volunteers, families with new babies, choir performances, and special parties to help celebrate holidays.

We are led by Susan Helm who has a heart for God, preschoolers and hospitality.  She has created a vision for the preschool department and our team that goes beyond our dreams and expectations.

The boys and girls that are in those classes will feel the love of Jesus through so many dedicated volunteers.

Thankful Post #11

Today is Jimmy's 40th birthday!  I have now known him for over half of his life.  With our crazy schedule this weekend, we were not able to have a party but I did make him a shirt that he wore to church so he got lots of blessings in person.  He even quoted Mike Gundy by saying, "I'm 40!  I am a man!"  I have been teasing Jimmy that he is old until my birthday in March when I turn 40.  Then he can NOT be old anymore because I refuse to be old.

I could not be more thankful than I am for this man, my knight in shining armor, my best friend, my sweetie, my confidant, my everything.  Life would be almost impossible without him by my side.

We have had rough patches in our relationship, in our finances, in raising our kids and even in extended family issues but through it all Jimmy has kept our focus on God and we have grown closer to together.


Thankful Post #10

I am so thankful for our youth group at church.  Hannah lives for the days that she can be at church and hanging out learning and growing closer to God right along with her best friends.

I love that our youth leaders strive to help make our young adults better people.  They offer many opportunities for them to serve and today was one such day.

Hannah joined other high school students and painted a house for a needy family.  We call this the Restore Ministry and it allows those students who chose to, to become the hands and feet of Jesus for a local family.

Our youth director, Keith took this picture of Hannah.  I just love her and her servant heart!  It makes this mom so very proud!


Friday, November 9, 2012

Thankful Post #9

I am so thankful for my parents.  They have been a lifetime of support and encouragement.  They have watched me succeed and suffer but they are always there with a helping hand.

They provided me a rich life full of love and honesty which I pray I am instilling in my children now.  They continue to show me what it means to stay married, how to raise children and how to be a part of my community.

 They have been my #1 fans from the beginning.

Thankful Post #8

Today I am thankful for my children.

Hannah who is such a joy to watch grow inwardly and outwardly into a young adult who loves her Lord, books, Dr Who, Harry Potter, texting and social media.  We have seen a missing joy in her lately after she aquired her own bow and arrows.  She continues to be a wonderful big sister to her siblings even though they can continually drive her nuts.

Jordan is our walking military history machine.  If he is talking, which is almost always, he is talking about a battle, ammo, guns, tanks, airplanes, Pearl Harbor, etc.  He is found frequently securing the perimeter around the house to keep us all safe.  He has also found a joy in shooting squirrels with his bb gun.

Harlee is our outgoing, social butterfly.  She always seems to a group of friends hanging out with her.  She is also our on-stage diva with her first appearance in a play.  She is looking forward to more plays and more time with her pageant mentor, Brookelyn.

Hallie Jo is the funniest little blonde I know.  She is wise beyond her years and she uses that to keep her siblings in line.  When she isn't busy being the "parent," she is hanging onto/laying on her big sister.

I pray that each of them continue to draw closer to God and strengthen their relationship with Him.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Thankful Post #7

I am thankful for all the men and women who have or are currently serving in any branch of the military.  Without our military, we would not be able to live in a country that gives us so many free choices.  

The military is such a different way of life than most have have experienced. I was born in another country due to my dad being in the Air Force then we moved back to the states when I was a year old.  When I was three, my mom and I lived with her parents while my dad was in Alaska for a year.  

My earliest memory was living in an apartment in the same town that my parents still live in.  I can remember visiting the commissary and the PX to shop.  I can remember having to take home "special forms" from school that my parents had to fill out so the district could collect information and make reports.  I can remember dad's green uniforms and his dress blues.  

The biggest memory I have is my dad going on TDY.  I always hated when he was gone, especially at bedtime.  I would slip out of my bed after my mom tucked me in and watch her outside in the backyard making sure all was right and that the dogs were fed, watered and good for the night.  After all those years, only one TDY kept my dad away during my birthday.

Looking back at what I thought was a miserable part of growing up, I now understand the sacrifices my parents made to follow where they felt God wanted them to be.  I also have a lot of sympathy for those family members who are at home and in the "trenches" of everyday life while their love is away serving wherever they are told to go.

Thank you to past, current and future military personnel.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Thankful Post #6

Today, like so many others, I am so very thankful that I live in a country that gives the right to vote to all of its citizens.   What an honor and a privalege it is to let my voice be heard.  I know that not everything I voted for or against will come out to my liking but I do know it is all in God's plan and he will take care of everything.

 *On a smaller note, I just realized today that Hannah will be old enough to vote in the next presidential election.  Ugh!

Thankful Post #5

Today I am thankful for the opportunities that have been given to one of my best friends in high school.

Tommy and I grew up going to the same high school and church.  He graduated two years before I did but we went as friends to his senior prom.  He was on the football team and he was always the "big brother" all my dates were scared of.  Ever since I met him, he has been one of the strongest followers of God that I know.  I can remember Tommy preaching the sermon when it was Youth Takeover Sunday at our church and there was never an opportunity at church that he was not a part of.

Sunday, November 4th, God finally brought Tommy to place that he has always wanted to be.  He is now the lead pastor at a church in Oklahoma.  This has been a long time coming and I could not be more proud.  I am giddy with excitement to see Tommy finally getting to follow what he knew God was leading him to do in high school.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Thankful Post #4

I am so thankful for many things today.

1.  The beautiful weather so that the kids were outside and found that jumping from hay bale to hay bale was a lot of fun.

2.  The marriage class that Jimmy and I are taking at church this semester.  It is led by our pastor, Chris Wall and his Robin.  We have heard some things that needed to remind us and others were new to us.  We pray that each couple attending sees a great blessing in their marriages.

3.  The local grocery store and their rewards card.  I have been taking advantage of the gas rewards and using my points each week to get savings when I fill up the van.  Tonight, I saved $.20/gallon on premium.  Also, I found out today that the same rewards card has been keeping track of points for nice, free cookware.  I had a lot more than I knew and was able to get a 3 1/2 quart covered saute pan.  I am only 20 points away from earning a dutch oven or other options available.  I might even cash in and get some for Christmas presents.


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Thankful Post #3

Today I am thankful that none of my kids had an activity and we were able to have a relaxed and easy going Saturday.

Jimmy had to work at his office and then go out of town for a little while.  The kids and I ran some errands to Ross, Target, Bibliomania ( a local used homeschool bookstore) and Braum's.

The kids and I spent the rest of the afternoon and evening just hanging out at home playing with Legos, Barbies, doll house and watching t.v.

We finished up the night eating some yummy 7-Can Soup and watching our OSU Cowboys versus Kansas State Wildcats.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Family Challenge for November

I wanted to try an experiment this month with my family.  I proposed that we not eat out at all the entire month of November.  This brought some moans and groans and my first thought was, "Hey, wait a minute!  I am the one who plans, shops and cooks all of our meals so why the heck are you complaining?"

I will admit I like to eat out and being the one who is served more than I care to admit.  My weakness is usually lunch after church on Sunday and those days the kids and I get finished with a coop activity.  It is pretty easy to just stop somewhere before we come home.

Yesterday was pretty easy but today was much more difficult.  Jimmy took three of the kids with him to work out of town so they were excused from the experiment today.  I only had Hannah with me and it would have been the perfect situation to have a mom/daughter date for lunch.  Then after I dropped off Hannah at a church activity and was alone, I could have easily stopped somewhere on the way back home.

I am so glad that the day is almost over and I made it!   

2012-13 Homeschool Curriculum

Here is what we are using this school year.

Hannah - 9th Grade (Yikes!  High School!)


Jordan - 4th Grade

My Father's World Exploring Countries and Cultures

Math-U-See Gamma and Delta

Apologia Exploring Creation with Zoology 1 

All About Spelling Level 2 

Easy Grammar Grade 3 

Explode the Code Books 4 1/2 and 5 

Harlee - 3rd Grade

My Father's World Exploring Countries and Cultures

Math-U-See Gamma

Apologia Exploring Creation with Zoology 1 

All About Spelling Level 2 

Easy Grammar Grade 3 

Explode the Code Books 4 1/2 and 5

Thankful Post #2

Today I am thankful for propane.  

That's odd, I know but we have had only had to use propane to use our stove.  Back in April or May, it started to smell odd when I would heat up the oven to bake.  The gauge on the tank outside was still at the same level at it was when we moved in August 2011.

Anyways, buying propane was not on the top of our list because of the cost and we just never had the extra money to pay for it. I was still able to use the burners for boiling water, skillet, etc. but no baking.  I really did not mind since baking heats up the kitchen and that is not good for the summer.

I adapted and used one of my crockpots 5-6 days a week and then either a salad or something like that on the other days.  Last week we found out we could have the propane delivered and then be billed next month.  

Woohoo!  I have been enjoying using the oven again.

A Month of Thanksgiving

Many of my friends are posting what they are thankful for each day of the month on their Facebook timeline.  I am choosing to post my here.  I will posting in no particular order of importance but just what I think of at the time of the post.

Thankful Post #1

I am thankful for the beautiful weather we have had the last few days in our area.  We have had high 70s to high 80s.  That means that we were able to open the windows in the afternoon and let nature warm the house without using electricity.

The beautiful weather yesterday also meant that Jordan's last day of golf this semester was a great day to be on the course.

I personally am not looking forward to the cooler weather.  I am not a fan of dry skin, static electricity and coats.

Missing in Action

I have been missing action for almost a year and it feels so good to be back.  Lots of things have been happening around here and I pray I will get caught up this week.  Be ready for lots and lots of pictures.

Anyways, the biggest thing for us is that I have taken the position of president of our homeschool group.  I started back in May with a meeting with our current board as we reviewed our last year and what we would like to see happen this year.  August brought a great statewide leadership training conference put on by our state homeschool leaders.

I have to admit beginning a new year in a new position was rather nerve racking and it brought on some major obstacles but looking back now, those were really just bumps in the road and we are smooth sailing now.

We have a monthly moms meeting we call Mom Time, co-op classes twice a month and a service project once a month.  We also throw in two field trips and a mom's night out event each month.  We have already had a family picnic to welcome in the new year and a couples event which included a bonfire.

The kids are all doing well with their school work.  Hallie Jo is doing preschool work but she thinks she should be doing lots more.  Harlee is in third grade and Jordan is in fourth grade.  Oh my, Hannah is in ninth grade which means more diligence on my part to make sure we are getting track of grades, transcripts, reading lists, etc.  I am also in the throngs of researching scholarships, grants and other possible ways to get college assistance without any loans.

Jimmy continues to stay busy with his business and has added website design/development to his list of services.  He has asked Hannah and I to come on board to help him design more.  I am hesitant but Hannah is great with photo editing so she will be a great addition.

Hannah has been wanting to try archery for awhile and a few weeks back she got her own bow.  She has been practicing almost every day and when she is practicing, there is a glow about her that I haven't seen in a long time.

Jordan just finished up his football season as well as golf for the fall.  He just started a new season of basketball.  I am sure he will pick golf back up in the spring because he made the official decision to not play baseball anymore.

Harlee has taken a year off of dance but decided to try out for her first ever play in our local community theater group.  She was selected to play The Chicken in Jack and the Magic Beans and did a great job.  She is ready to try out for another play.  She also is still working with her mentor, Brookelyn who won the crown at the Miss Moore-Norman pageant and will compete for Miss Oklahoma in June with Harlee at her side.

Hallie Jo got to start her first year of dance and is loving every minute of it.  She asks almost every day if it is dance day.  She will have her Christmas recital at a local church in December.  Otherwise, she stays busy hanging on her big sister and irritating Harlee and Jordan.

Keep an eye out!  This blog is about to get busy.