Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Worthy Cause

As you consider the gift giving season I'd like to point you to a site I found through my affiliation with

Visit Hope for Women

This is just one of many many cottage industries bringing hope to women and families around the world. Specifically for knitting interests I know of Himalaya and Mango Moon. Supporting companies like these offers not only a unique and quality gift, but also a unique and quality experience.

Please check out these sites and seek out others - in the spirit of Christian giving that is maybe just a little bit bigger than the gift itself.

I'll keep you posted!


Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Like Jet Fuel for Mommies

Ah, coffee!

I could sing it's praises from mountain tops (forget that it stains teeth, is hard on my kidneys, and effects of over consumption of caffeine v. calcium absorbtion are still in question -scroll down halfway). Coffee is my friend.

I'm not a regular morning coffee drinker. This week I began making coffee in the morning as things are kind of chili around here until about 11 when the sun warms things up. [Casey and I are in a 'heated' debate over when to turn the heater on b/c it's still so warm during the day - I'll probably have to cave this weekend if rain comes in] I am finding myself more productive and energized (and quite possibly unbearable to those around me, though no one has mentioned it yet). Who knew? All those "It Moms" must be drinking coffee by the gallon.

I know there are those who do not like coffee (freaks) or even prefer *gasp* TEA (so what if that's my favorite Yerba Mate cup in the photo), but for me, for now, coffee is my energy drink of choice.

What is your 'Mommy Jet Fuel?'

I'll keep you posted!


Monday, October 20, 2008

Menu Planning Monday - The Pantry Edition

This week I am using up what we have in the pantry and fridge (I see a HUGE grocery trip on my weekend horizon). I got industrious (so I can be lazy all week) and planned breakfasts and lunches - maybe Casey should take the kids out of the house for 6 hours more often?

B: Cereal w/milk
L: Hotdogs with carrots and apples
D: Smoky Turkey Shepherd's Pie (thank you RR it's a fave)

B: Oatmeal/Juice
L: Soup (maybe PB crackers for Toby who doesn't like soup)
D: Chicken Pot Pies

B: Muffins/milk
L: Quesadillas and fruit
D: Ham and Bean Soup with cornbread and fruit

B: French Toast/juice
L: Leftovers
D: McDonald's (Toby's birthday choice)

B: Cereal/milk
L: Boiled eggs, fruit, crackers
D: Summer Sausage & Rice w/mixed veggies

B: Sausage & egg scramble
L: Out - after puppet show
D: Grilled Tuna over salad

It feels good not to have to think about meals for the rest of the week. Everything I need I have (or will after a 10 min trip to the grocery) and it's all planned out. All I have to do now is put it together and that's the part I enjoy.

Check out the inspired menus of other Monday Planners HERE or by clicking the logo above.

I'll keep you posted!


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

What Can I Do?

Blog Action Day: Poverty

Casey called me last night with a statistic he heard on NPR. Families (of 4 or more) in America are considered the 'working poor' if they earn less than $41,000.00 annually.

I find this staggering, but perhaps not for the reasons one thinks. $41,000 is a LOT of money. 80% of the world lives on less than $10.00/day (source) yet here in America $41,000 for a family of four is the breaking point - the point where one earns too much to qualify for help, but not enough to really do more than (and sometimes not even as much as) make ends meet. Now I'm not naive. I know that there are HUGE differences in standards, economies, governments, scale, and SO many other factors that the $10.00/day statistic is NOT a comparison by any means - I just find it interesting.

Casey relayed the 'working poor' information to me in a moment of prayerful gratitude that, by God's grace, we are no longer part of that statistic.

*It makes me wonder (and I don't KNOW - these are ONLY my own thoughts) if life really IS so expensive? Or is our over-advertised, over-privileged, over-expected, over-processed American lifestyle inspiring us to feel 'poor' instead of blessed and abundant?

*Are we blessed and abundant - even when we struggle to make ends meet?

*How do we help each other when times are uncertain? How do we help others - those living on less than $10.00/day here and abroad?

*What inspires us to truly believe that we are a people and a country blessed with Freedom and abundance and choice?

Some of my favorite places to help:
Heifer International
World Vision
Angel Food Ministries
MUST Ministries

To read more "Blog Action Day" posts please click the logo above.

I'll keep you posted!


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Cutest Darn Socks EVER!

bitty baby socks

Is there any cuter knitted item than itty-bitty baby socks?

for scale

No, NO bebes in our future - these are a gift.

I'll keep you posted!


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

What is your occupation right now?
Home Maker
What color are your socks right now?
Pink and white, but the ones I'm knitting are much more interesting.
What are you listening to right now?
The background music to Anna's Wii Game 'Dogz"
What was the last thing that you ate?
Peach Yogurt, Coffee & A B-Complex
Can you drive a stick
Last person you spoke to on the phone?
My Father
Do you like the person who sent this to you?
Love Her! Nina is a fabulous girl!
How old are you today?
What is your favorite sport to watch on TV?
College Football
What is your favorite drink?
Have you ever dyed your hair?
yes (and I need to again soon)
Favorite food?
What is the last movie you watched?
Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
Favorite day of the year?
March 21
How do you vent anger?
I yell (not entirely healthy - I know; working on it)
What was your favorite toy as a child?
Roller Skates
What is your favorite season?
Early Spring
Cherries or Blueberries?
Do you want your friends to e-mail you back?
Who is the most likely to respond?
My Blog friends as it's an easy post!
Who is least likely to respond?
Living arrangements?
Wishing to move, but happy where we are in our small home
When was the last time you cried?
When don't I cry? Last night (I think) watching TV of some sort.
What is on the floor of your closet?
Uh, stuff? I try not to go in there - it's scary.
Who is the friend you have had the longest that you are sending to?
What did you do last night
Played Crazy 8's with my honey
What are you most afraid of
Being average
Plain, cheese, or spicy hamburgers?
Favorite dog breed?
Komondor, but we'll probably always have mutts or rescues.
Favorite day of the week?
Any day that Casey gets to work from or be at home.
How many states have you lived in?
Just the one!
Diamonds or pearls?
Emeralds (I know I broke the rules, but hey it's MY blog).
What is your favorite flower?
Lilacs or Dasies

Please consider yourself "tagged" and link back so I can read your answers!

I'll keep you posted!


Monday, October 06, 2008

Menu Planning Monday - Hoping for the Best

Considering last week's menu went a little like this:
Zaxby's (at least it was salad)
Ham Sandwiches
Frozen Pizza
etc., etc.

I think Menu Planning Monday is especially important this week - both waste wise and waist wise.

So I'm making it (really) easy this week and hoping for the best:

Baked Chicken with glazed carrots and green beans and fruit
Spaghetti with meat sauce with green salad and fruit
Meatballs and gravy with rice and peas and fruit
Chicken noodle soup with crackers and fruit
Inside Out Bacon cheeseburgers with carrots & celery and fruit
Chicken Fried Rice with fruit

A week of no-recipe meals sounds perfect and everything (except egg noodles) is already in the pantry so no big shopping for the week - phew! Rachael I promise I'll re-visit you next week and make your fabulous 30-minute meals, but this week - home cooked from memory is just right. For great recipe ideas and everything under the sun from vegan to budget friendly to feeding large or small families please click the logo above and visit the links on the Menu Planning Monday page.

Sometimes I struggle, do you struggle with the day to day? I try to stay within a relative schedule, budget, etc. but sometimes I just struggle. Convincing myself that everyone else does it ALL perfectly (whilst knowing they really don't) doesn't help.

Do you do that? Do you ever feel as though others must be doing it (whatever 'it' is) better and more and with a bigger smile? What are your struggles and how do you overcome them? Let's share and help each other (or just gripe together and know we are NOT alone).

I'll keep you posted!


Friday, October 03, 2008

I'd Rather Go to the Gynocologist...

Than go to the dentist.

I know - more that you EVER wanted to know.

Even considering my feelings for the dentist's office I HAD to go yesterday - due to the giant hole in my tooth.

After anxious anticipation I arrived (certain that my future held a root canal) and the Dr. said - "Oh, that's a tiny hole." Not in my book buster - I swear entire meals got trapped in there (eeewww). Within and hour it was drilled and filled - or "Restored" in dentist lingo. Get this - it also didn't cost me an arm, leg, or first born child. Praise God!

While in the euphoric state of "Restored" (and perhaps more notably NOT broke) I made all four of us cleaning appointments for next week - I KNOW - and not even on nitrous!

I feel much better now that I have a plan and a restored tooth.

I'll keep you posted!


Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Oh MY GOSH!!!!

She Knits!

Short Row to Mexico

It's true that you learn something new everyday. Above is my very first short-row heel. I used More Sensational Knitted Socks as reference and away I went. It was easy (if a little tedious) and will fit Casey's heel more comfortably than a heel flap/turn. Yeah - buggar complained about having "ears" on the heels of the last pair - sucker is lucky to get handmade socks in the first place right? {Honey, I'm just kidding - I am enjoying making these and am glad to learn something new so they fit perfectly - after all that's the point of custom clothing}

This yarn - Fortissima Socka Color Mexico something (I don't know it's called Mexico and we (the shop) ordered it through Skacel so it's made like trekking only it's a little thicker than trekking) is a DREAM to work with. it's rugged and soft and super sproingy. Oh the colors! I almost wish I had more. Almost.

I'll keep you posted!