Monday, November 28, 2011

The end of November

It actually doesn't look this snowy in NY right now. It did... a few weeks ago. When I snapped this picture. I actually remembered to bring my camera with me somewhere, and it was so pretty, I pulled to the side of the road and snapped a picture. I may see how this looks in a large print and hang it over my mantel. Maybe.


So does anyone not know about Pinterest yet? Really? Get on top of this folks... it's the biggest thing since facebook! Anyways, I am addicted to pinterest. Not gunna lie. And there are so many awesome things you can find on it... go... I'll wait while you see what all the fuss is about. Anyhow...
I discovered these yummy cheese crackers pictured above.
And this crazy good chocolate chip cookie pie pictured below:


So while you dream of eating that, I'll recap you on my silent few weeks:
I went to VA with a friend of mine to visit with my brother and his new wife and daughter.
I finished Havilah's quilt.
I've sold some stuff on Etsy.
I'm rearranging some rooms in my home.
I've decorated for Christmas.
I've had Thanksgiving with my family.

And that's a wrap.























Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy November to all of you.
It's a lovely time of year.
Time to pull out sweaters. (I have a terrible sweater fettish!)
Time to turn on the Christmas music. That's right. I'm one of them.
Time to get out your up-cycled sweater bags!

Oh, you don't have one of those??
Head over to my Etsy shop. I have 2 of them for sale... more on the way.

I also listed some cute belts. A bargain at $8 each. Hopefully have more of these listed soon too! Think of those people on your Christmas lists.

How was your Halloween? Do you celebrate it? Did you have trick or treaters or go trick or treating? We took the boys to 2 houses. Yeah, we're not big on the holiday, but some people were expecting us, so we went. I didn't, however, buy any candy to pass out. I didn't remember getting kids coming to the door... then my huband reminded me of our friendly neighbors. So I ran to the kitchen and made some milk chocolate yummies:



Just little round disks with sprinkles. I put them in little baggies with my business card (is that lame or what?) and set them in a bowl on the porch. Several were gone when we got home... so somebody had some! I hope they enjoyed them!


Be back soon with some Christmas card ideas.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Tim's Wedding

Do any of you have a Tim in your family?
You know, the brother who walks into a room full of happy family members and creates chaos?
Yes?
Oh good, there is one in every family.
This post is to tell you there is hope for your "Tim." =)

[Let's all hope my brother doesn't read/get offended by that.] *Giggle*

Well, our Tim joined the Marines. Met his true love, and her beautiful daughter, in CA. And soon decided to marry her. To say we are happy is an understatement. We.Are.Thrilled.
Here is Tim's new daughter playing peek-a-boo with Havilah:



Here is Tim's bride {Isn't she georgeous?!} with her sister.

Here are my parents with my brother right before the ceremony:



(He looks so young!)

And my two boys with their uncles.

Hopefully soon I'll have some better pics. But that'll have to do for now!

It was a good trip to VA, but we are glad to be home again.




Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My Coffee and Other Important Things

Things have been going soooo well here. I finally have been feeling like my old self. My "before I got pregnant with Havilah" self. I have been productive without having to "pump myself up" first. I knew I had been out of sorts, but I didn't know how badly until I started feeling better again.
Ok.
Enough with that.
Do you know what it's like to blog with children?
With a baby?
Asleep?

It makes for awful heavy typing fingers. But it's awful cute.

So onto the purpose of this post. Good coffee. I went on a quick run to the local grocery store.
(Which I usually avoid at all cost. People who shop there regularly must hate money.) Anyhow... I got looking at those delicious looking creamers in the dairy section. I really was there to get half and half, but those creamers always catch my eye. Once in a while I give in and buy one ---- and it's never as good as I hoped. And often down right gross. Not to mention, never as creamy as half and half. So, I resisted the urge to try some gingerbread flavored creamer, grabbed my half and half, and thought about gingerbread coffee all the way home.



I decided, why not flavor the coffee while it's brewing? It turned out (in my humble opinion) very well. And I still got to use half and half. (Perhaps I should re-name this post: Half and Half, and other important things...)
Ok, here are your ingredients:


Good coffee, vanilla (real or fake, I'm not here to squabble folks), cinnamon, ground cloves, ginger, and nutmeg. Measure in your coffee and amount of water as you normally do. I brewed a 5 cup pot. Then I added - on top of the grounds - about a half tsp of vanilla, 2 good shakes of cinnamon and ginger, and one good shake of cloves and nutmeg. Then I hit the brew button.


Let her do her thing, add sugar and cream to taste... Voila! Gingerbread coffee. This goes perfectly with fresh baked pumpkin cookies:

(No - you are not getting the cookie recipe, what do you want me to do?! Go out of business?!)

So between feeling great, great coffee, and a sunshiney morning, it was a good day!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Cha..cha..cha..Changes

Lately I have had a lot on my mind. I want to create a lot of changes. Changes in the way my house is run. Changes in the way we worship, and where we worship. Changes in my Etsy store. Changes for my cookie business. Lots of change. Even changes in my home: where we do school, where I sew, where Ben sleeps. (When Ben sleeps)

And all these changes lead to much prayer. And even lead to more questions. Am I doing the right thing for my family? Can I homeschool my kids and still maintain sanity? Can I push enough of my own desires away to homeschool? I mean, Nick and I felt really certain that God was calling us to open a coffee house... once the kids were all in school. But if the kids aren't going to school? Then when? Or are the kids suppose to go to school? And where?
Thankfully, I know God has it all under control. He will continue to lead us, as He has done. We have found a new place of worship, where we were welcomed with open arms. Where they gather to help each other... chop fire wood, paint a house, have a hay ride. Where they reach out in love... and really sing in true worship. My husband and I leave church on Sunday already looking forward to the next week. We love it. And as much as we feel that God guided us in our search for a new church family, we feel He will guide in our search for how to grow our family.


And I know a lot starts with me. On how I use my time. For business, for my children, for my house. My house needs alot of help right now. My husband and I have recently pinpointed a major problem that affects how I get things done... or don't get them done. And now that we know what the problem is, it's working with it and around it. I think I'm getting there. Learning to be a mom and a house keeper and a teacher doesn't happen over night. But slowly... I accomplish one task at a time...

Like this quilt that is pictured. For my Aunt Colleen. (My absolute FAVORITE aunt.) It's made from shirt pockets of my late Uncle Bill's shirts. I finally finished it. And she loves it.
(My Aunt Colleen and I at Ben's dedication celebration.)


So I search for change, and pray for guidance, and try and do my best to do what is asked of me.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Camping

I took my kiddos camping for a night with my parents family & my aunts family. It was really a lovely time. But by far, the most exciting part of our 2 day, one night stay, was our friendly bear cub. Who came to hang out by our campsite right after dinner. This picture is my little guy leaning off the porch of our cabin to get a better look at our visitor:
Here is a blurry (but amusing) picture of our bear sniffing out our camping chairs:

(My boys were very afraid the bear was going to make off with them.)


And here's our little friend headed off to terrify some other poor campers:
He was pretty small, but I will tell you, when he walked right up to the steps on the porch we were on, I got a little nervous. We were mere feet from him... and my camera had shut off so I missed that awesome shot of him looking right at us.

A nice part of this camping trip was the lake and beach. The kids had a blast! (See the man with the big beard? Guess what he does for a living?? He's my uncle, and he's a logger. Totally looks the part doesn't he?)
And last but not least, a snapshot of my other two kiddos, Danny is asking grandma Kim for the hundreth time, when the camp fire was going to be started =)


It was a lovely weekend, and we can't wait to go back next year.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

My Marriage Soap Box

"And above all put on love, which is the bond of perfection. And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called to live in one body, and be ye thankful." Colossians 3:14-15

These verses have helped me in my marriage more than any other verses. I feel that the keys to marriage are in these verses. Yes, in other places, Paul rights about the roles of man and wife, but I don't feel that defining roles is the key to keeping a marriage together. Important, yes, but not the key.

What has brought me to writing this post is a recent explosion of our friends and family getting divorced. In about 5 weeks we have heard of 7 couples splitting up. It's crazy. And it makes me wonder: When we (my husband and I) are having a hard time in our marriage, is anyone going to be left to tell us: "Stick with it, it's worth it, don't give up!" Or will everyone say: "I just moved on to the next best thing... you need change... it's not worth the trouble." Anyways, this is what has brought me to sharing these verses with you all today.

Here are the points I pull out of these verses, that remind me, what love towards my husband should look like:

1) "Put on Love" notice it doesn't say: feel the love, feelings of love, be in love... it says: Put on Love. Put it on. Choose it. I can choose not to have it, or choose to have it.
2) Perfection comes from love. I am not going to have a perfect marriage, because it's made up of imperfect people, who forget to love. But the more we love, the more perfect our marriage will get.
3) "Let the Peace of God reign in your hearts" Sometimes, ok, alot of times, I let anger, or bitterness, or discontentment reign in my heart. But peace should. If we are not striving for peace and peacefullness, havoc will reign. I know from my own experience, days when I choose to be discontent are days that are full of havoc. I didn't put this together until I read these verses, but I can spot it right away now. If things aren't going smoothly - do a heart check - that could be the problem.
4) "And be ye thankful" This is the crux of it all. The big mama. There are 10 million things for which I can (and often do) complain about. However, equal and usually greater in number are things for which I can be thankful about are always infront of me if I choose to see them. Often, and I can be a part of this sometimes, I hear complaints about husbands. Usually silly things... garbage not being taken out, clothes in the living room. And sometimes much bigger things - very valid complaints. But what happens when we choose to praise our husbands, not only to them, but in our day to day conversations with other women? Or in our prayers being thankful for him... that he comes home to us at night... that he loves us... that he's a good dad... that he we are not widows like so many others... for the table he helped me clear... for the time he took the kids outside to play so I could have a half hour to myself... for the spattering of his items throughout the house - becuase they are there due to the fact that he's busy, running here and there to help others, to help me, to work hard.
I highly recommend reading One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp to get a better handle on thankfullness. It was an amazing book.

So thats my soap box for today... because everytime we get the news of another marriage failing, my heart hurts, and I wonder... do they know these verses? These secret keys?

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pictures of my Day

Hello friends.

Did I tell you about this little missy? This puppy? That is final piece of evidence in proving that I am crazy? Yes, there she is. I am buying a gate for her. Soon. Maybe online as soon as I'm done with this post.

We got apples at the market today. Aren't they pretty? I mean, does anything taste better than apple crisp?


Oh yes, and a snack of yogurt with honey. I know, that's an obscene amount of honey. But, I could have eaten the honey without the yogurt, so I feel that this is a compromise.


Things I've accomplished this week (as in the last 7 days, I realize it's only Wednesday):

My aunts quilt. (Yes the one that was suppose to be done a year ago.)

Listed new items on Etsy

Made plans to go to my brother's wedding. *More on this to come

Made a healthier shopping list

Finally wrote a list of blog posts that I want to do, before they escape my mind.

Made a crazy amount of pumpkin cookies, and plan on doing more.


And that's a wrap up.




Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Fun With Words

Danny (to his sandwich): I'm going to rip your big butt off.
Me: ?! We don't talk like that in my house.
Ben: I will say big butt outside. Not inside. Not nice inside. Only outside.
Danny (To me): Okay mom.
Danny (to his sandwich): I like your big butt.
Me: ?! We don't say "big butt" at all in this house.
Danny (to me): Oh, that's what you mean.
Me: I'm glad we've had this conversation.
Danny (to his sandwich): I'm going to rip off your big crust!
Me: ?!

Monday, September 26, 2011

The Computer = Relax

The boys are down back on the property with their dad. ('Cause he is awesome.) And the baby just fell asleep. So my mental list went to work: Laundry upstairs, laundry downstairs, laundry on the couch, magazines need sorted + tossed, floors need picked up - vacuumed - swept. Dinner needs to be made. Not bought. Made.


Not gunna lie, I started getting a wee bit overwhelmed. Where do I start? What's most important? And you know where I started?
Here.
Here online. I read some uplifting blogs. Some things to make me know: You are not loosing your mind! You can do this.


I took a few minutes to really relax. It'll get done. I have the energy and time (kinda) to do it. Deep breath.


Also, I've decided: I need to organize this house (you've heard that before?) I have a plan though. Starting tomorrow - my Tuesdays, my day off, I am staying home. And my kids are leaving with the babysitter. Not going outside (they only come back in to bother me.) Actually leaving. And I am cleaning - organizing - finishing -ridding - completing - perhaps relaxing. And saving money. 'Cause I'm not out shopping. Which means on Thursday - I will have to take the kids shopping with me while I'm out. Still working on a solution for this. Perhaps my husband and I will revert to grocery dates like we used to do. We do have a good time shopping together. (And I tend to be more frugal and less extravagant with him around!)


Thems the plans.


(Photos are of a special order quilt I just recently completed.)

Friday, September 16, 2011

Friday Ramblings

It is rather cool this morning. Thankfully my computer is in close proximity to our electric fireplace. My husband asked me if I wanted him to turn on the furnace this morning. [It is 62 degrees in our house, in winter I like a balmy 72.] But ya know that smell... that "just turned on the furnace for the first time this season" smell? I didn't want that while our little pre-school buddy was over doing pre-school with us. [Yes, I'd rather freeze the poor little thing...] Don't get all crazy, I moved the little school table in front of the fireplace too!
This morning I got my coffee and turned the computer on... figuring I'd finish the cup while the computer booted up and found the internet. It is that slow. We did though, decide that with some Christmas money, we'd get ourselves a new one. Anyways, I sat down, got baby comfy on my lap, took a sip of coffee and realized I hadn't put enough cream in it. Don't you hate that? It's little stuff like that... makes me crazy. Or family genes. I don't really know.
Did any see the new show "Up all night"? My hubby thought it was going to be awful. But he laughed harder than I did.
Oh, and I totally had a dream last night that my daughter started talking at 8 months old. Talking talking. Just want it on the record incase it really happens.
I have some awesome stuff to show you soon... pictures of what I bring home from auctions if I am left at them unsupervised... a cute fall quilt... awesome Christmas wreath... it's gunna be good folks!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Good Wednesday Morning

I don't think I've hidden from you the fact that I am a big fan of coffee. I'd look up a post [that I think I did] with a picture of my favorite, giant coffee mug, but I'm a wee bit lazy this morning. Anyways, that awesome coffee cup is no more. *Insert moment of silence*




As I opened my cupboard this morning to choose a cup from which to drink my coffee, it occured to me: I don't want a set of all the same coffee cups. I like all different ones. Some mornings I like to drink out of a nice tall dark mug [like the one that is no more], other mornings I like something prettier, or vintage. Or whatever. So, I bring you: this post of awesome coffee cups listed on Etsy. Beware: Searching coffee cups on Etsy is dangerous. I could have bought at least 10 without even going more than 2 pages into my search. *Yikes*




Mug w/Coffee



Vintage Dunkin Donuts



Vintage Blue Flower

Hand Made Pottery

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Cooking Good Food

Ah yes, good food. It's hard in July when it's 87 degrees to cook a hot meal. But with Fall blowing in, a nice warm meal is what's needed.
So I cracked open a jar of my home made pasta sauce. (Recipe from my husband's Italian family.) And threw a handful of shredded ramano cheese in it.
Fried up some grass fed beef from my aunt's Scottish Highlander cattle farm.
Boiled some noodles and...

Oh yeah! Garnish with some more shredded cheese on top. Delish!
Side dish: Guacamole and chips. (Don't judge! This isn't your house! I'd eat quacamole with every meal if I had an avacado tree in my back yard!)

Any ways, I always like to sprinkle some crushed red peppers on my pasta. Give it a little kick.

And for dessert:
Peach bread, sliced warm and topped with Mascarpone cheese.
I love cooking and baking in cooler weather. Who's with me??



Monday, September 5, 2011

Playing with Picnik

I was enjoying myself the other night, sorting through some photos my photographer friend took of Havilah and I.

And went onto Picnik and played around with their photo editing.

It was entirely too much fun.


I actually have no idea how I got the color change in this next one, but I like it:

Added a verse to this one:



And I am watching them to arrive in my mailbox any day now since I uploaded and ordered them from Shutterfly. I don't know who created shutterfly, but thank you for saving me from the long lines and anti-helpful staff at wal-mart's photo center. One less thing I need to go to walmart for. (Can I get an Amen?!)



Friday, September 2, 2011

Vintage Lovelies

Earlier this summer, as I was off on another errand,
I passed these lovelies at a garage sale. Stacked up in a similar fashion:

I was headed somewhere though, (In a rush, I'm sure) and so I didn't stop.
I did mention to my husband a few days later though:
"Hun, I saw these yellow suitcases. A set of them! They were awesome. And you know, if we travel, no one could mistake them at the airport... just not what you see nowadays."


Well, my sweet darling husband filed that information away. And about two weeks later, he was driving along, and happened passed a garage sale. With a lovely stack of suitcases. The.Same.Ones. What?! How is it that someone didn't already nab them?!
But he got the whole set for me. And he haggled on the price (not his style, but I'm working on him. I'm proud of him for getting a screaming deal.) Check this out: $35 for the whole shebang!

He had the boys bring them into the house and show me. And they have all the keys for the locks too. (I totally would have stored such a gift away for Christmas or something, but he didn't. Cause he's awesome.)

So there they are. Now, where can I fly so that I can use them? =)

One more thing:
How cute is my little leprechaun?