Sunday, March 27, 2011

...still counting!

Blessing 121 - another couple of beautiful picnic perfect days with my girls. We had a picnic with our preschool friends Thursday and we had one just the 3 of us Friday.

Blessing 122 - Julia recently responding "I know that, you always say that to me!" when I tell her "I love you" or "I'm glad I'm your mommy". I'm glad she knows that - I want her to always know that!

Blessing 123 - the awesome quiet that follows a long fought battle at kids' bedtime

Blessing 124 - Saturday phone calls to our parents

Blessing 125 - the joys of building block towers

Blessing 126 - Great deals at Publix!
4 16 oz boxes Ritz
6 boxes Quaker chewy bars
4 bottles Kraft BBQ sauce
2 Clorox toilet cleaners
4 Lysol wipes (80 wipe containers!)
2 Large boxes children's Quaker cereal
4 loaves bread
4 8oz. bags shredded Kraft cheese
4 bags Gortons fish (18-20 oz) - this was my splurge item! Each bag was $2.25 - eek!!!! However, I really prefer to have fuss free food around for Sunday lunches when we are in a rush to eat, rest and then head back to church. Plus, I thought some of those fish sticks might be a nice change of pace in the girls' lunches.
$50 BP gas card ($42 of which has already been used)
Total at Publix: $72.62 tax included.

I also went to Walmart, and I was in shock to hear my total there - it about equaled my Publix amount. Yowser. Oh well, we needed batteries and such and I also needed to price match some produce.

Blessing 127 - price matching at Walmart. A hassle at times, but I love it!

Blessing 128 - A 5 year old who acted as if going through my grocery bags was equal to Christmas morning. Sure, I got a good number snacks that she'd enjoy at preschool and I got her much begged for strawberry muffin mix, but seriously, who would have thought her eyes would light up for 10 minutes as she unloaded all those bags?

Blessing 129 - An unexpected gift for the girls from a neighbor. We tried this out for dessert and it was good!

Blessing 130 - A new recipe that actually tasted good. (I'm always nervous!) I used the new Philadelphia Santa Fe cooking creme to make a yummy skillet meal.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Blessing 111 - That a friend from way back in middle school likes the idea of counting your blessings so much that she's decided to do it too! Yay! Glad we can together go on this journey of looking and being thankful for the wonderful things in life!

Blessing 112 - A church parking lot and playground that we can enjoy on beautiful days like today! We have a small playground at our apartments, but I certainly like the one at church better. Plus, I'm more comfortable with the girls riding their bikes in an empty parking lot than our busy apartment one.

Blessing 113 - That I didn't hurt myself when I decided to play on the playground too. ;)

Blessing 114 - That I was confident enough to post that picture AND the picture of me on a tractor earlier this week DESPITE being told by my husband that I looked like a dork! (how rude!) There was most definitely a time not long ago that worrying about what people thought of me would have prevented those pics from being taken much less posted!

Blessing 115 - Audrey asking to take a nap today. Mark the books on this one!

Blessing 116 - The excitement of our first trip to the pool this year! The water was cold, but the girls and Matt enjoyed it. I put the swimsuit on, but couldn't bring myself to get in.

Blessing 117 - Quiet time to close my eyes and lay by the pool (instead of playing with my children!) ;)

Audrey eventually got too cold and was ready to come in. When Julia returned home 20 minutes after us, Julia's lips were purple!

118 - Not having to cook dinner, not even having to reheat the leftovers that we ate. Matt did it.

119 - A new author and book series I'm smack in the middle of right now. LOVE IT! Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove.

120 - The girl's looking forward to our lifegroup get together tomorrow as much as we are. They love hanging around the older girls whose families are also in our group!

Friday, March 18, 2011

Needing to not worry

I'm up late tonight (actually it's 2:45 AM) and I'm in dire need of a change of focus. I'm focusing on worries as I type this so counting my blessings is a must! I've been all dramatic humming "It Is Well With My Soul" for the last few minutes. Thinking that reading the story behind this hymn would make me cast proper light on my current worries, I googled it. Wow! I knew he wrote the hymn while at sea after losing his family in a shipwreck, but there was more than that! Horatio Spafford came to financial ruin due to the Great Chicago Fire in 1872, lost his 4 daughters to the shipwreck just 2 years later, and later lost his only son at age 4.

I worry about stupid stuff.

Let's focus on my multitude of wonderfulness! (And then perhaps I can go to sleep!)

Blessings 102-110!
I love working at the same preschool my kids attend! It's great being not just able but expected to attend their fun fieldtrips with them! Blessing 102 is getting to go with the girls and their friends to the farm Wednesday!

Similar to our first trip to this farm, Julia loved everything about it! She was very willing to feed, pet, hold, and ride whatever animal they put in front of her. Blessing 103 - seeing my sweet little one enjoy loving on animals.

Blessing 104 - getting to see my other sweet little one not always enjoy loving on animals!

Can't you just see how fabulous a mom I am? Most moms would comfort, console, and assure their child that the goats weren't going to get them.

What did I do?

Grabbed my camera for the photo op!

Mother of the Year. Right Here!

Audrey did wind up enjoying part of the trip.

Blessing 105 - the feeling of fun and sweet simplicity that came with enjoying a farm with 3, 4, and 5 year olds!

Blessing 106 - Matt's sister sending me a pic of the flowers we ordered for my mom's birthday. Amy knew I'd want to see!

Blessing 107 - the girls' laughter as they chased Matt down for not wearing enough green on St. Patrick's Day

Blessing 108 - that none of the preschool kids complained about someone pinching them today. I partly regretted having joked about the pinching thing earlier this week!

Green pudding, anyone??

Blessing 109 - Children who are discovering the many talents God has given them... even though today's newly discovered talent is licking their armpits.

Blessing 110 - Receiving our prepared tax returns in the mail! Sign and done! Thanks, mom!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Birthday Week: M-W

Blessing 91. Out of school 2 days for Mardi Gras! Monday and Tuesday - no school!
Blessing 92. One of our days off happened to be Julia's Birthday!
Blessing 93. Friends to come over and help the girls celebrate their birthday week with a Pancake Playdate. (Yes, we're celebrating birthdays all week long! Monday - Saturday)

Blessing 94. Birthday wishes for Julia from family via phone.

This is Julia blowing out candles again at dinner. We stuck them in a crescent roll this time.

Blessing 95. When Matt's parents called for Julia's birthday, Danny/Pop told us he was coming down to visit the next day. We decided to keep it a secret from the girls.
Blessing 96. The fun and sneakiness of getting Julia close to the window Tuesday afternoon so she could see her surprise visitor. We had fun with the camera!

We took some cute pics near the window

Then she did a double take as she saw a familiar van pull up. I was still taking her picture and she tried so hard to smile at me, but her eyes just kept darting towards the van. She's in the middle of saying "Pop!"

Blessing 97. Audrey getting a much needed nap and consequently sleeping through Pop's arrival. I warned Pop that Audrey typically wakes up from her naps grumpy. (I didn't want him taking offense!)
Blessing 98. Audrey did NOT wake up grumpy after all. When she heard his voice she looked up.

And was so excited she fell back to sleep! Or at least pretended to.
5 minutes later, Audrey started shouting "yah, yah" over and over. I have no idea what "yah, yah" means, but the child was certainly pleased to wake up to Pop!

Blessing 98. That the tornado that came through the area Wednesday morning didn't severely hurt anyone.
Blessing 99. That Matt and Danny saw the funnel, and I didn't. I think I would have wet myself.
Blessing 100. That the girls and other preschoolers I was around had no clue what was happening! Audrey's pre-k classroom is an interior room. Julia's class joined them, and the kids were none the wiser. They were even asking, "When are we going to play outside?" Ummm, the sky is green and the clouds are rotating. Not right now!

Blessing 101. That I had my kids with me during the tornado. My worries would have increased exponentially had they been at home with Pop! I'd told them they could skip school, but Julia takes her education very seriously ;) And Audrey takes separation from me AND Julia very seriously!

Thursday, March 10, 2011


March 10 - Audrey's 3rd birthday!

We had a birthday breakfast for lunch today (I worked a couple hours this morning). The meal consisted of sopapilla, eggs, and strawberries. Since I wasn't planning on making a cake today, I decided that it would be a good idea to stick Audrey's birthday candles in the sopapilla for her to blow them out.

Guess what.

That wasn't such a good idea.

The sopapilla was fresh out of the oven when I put the candles in, and... well... the candle bottoms melted.

I was wondering why after a minute or so they started tipping over...

Candles melting in the hot sopapilla makes perfect sense - in hindsight

So, we wound up putting the candles in Audrey's eggs instead, and I got to serve delicious sopapilla that had 3 small holes in it filled with pink, yellow, and green wax. Lovely.

Birthday girl didn't care where the candles were though. She just liked us singing to her and getting to blow out the candles. She was so proud!

After opening presents...

... we surprised the girls with a trip to Kangarooz. It's a playcenter with alot of large inflatables.

A fun time was had by all. Little Miss Audrey had extra fun hiding from the camera, but I snuck a few shots in here and there.

We had an Audrey approved dinner tonight of chicken tacos and then went through the sing/candle birthday ritual again. Candle bottoms don't melt in rice krispie treats.

Happy Birthday, sweet girl! Check out old birthday pics of Audrey here

Monday, March 7, 2011


Julia turns 5 today. Did I cry last night as we tucked "4 year old Julia" into bed for the last time? Why, yes. Yes, I did!

As most moms do, I tried my best to get a picture this morning.

She was a willing model.

For a few minutes.

Perhaps I'll try again later, but perhaps not. The girls each have a friend over right now, and we'll be having a pancake brunch before long!

Happy Birthday, dear Julia!

Check out old birthday pictures!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Blessing 81- 90

My week was up yesterday, so I'm a day late with my blessings. I apologize, but I must admit that it probably won't be the last time...

I was on the playground talking to my coworker, Crystal, a week or so ago. We were talking about my girls' birthdays coming up and how I wanted to have a party that was special for them, but that I didn't want to spend a fortune on it. I had about decided to just forget the whole party thing (everything cheapish I could think of would be held outside... weather permitting! I don't like weather permitting!) when Crystal said something that just struck me. She talked about making memories for her boys and about how even simple stuff could be special. That very moment I decided that I was definitely going to host a little birthday party for the girls, and the conversation would also turn into my blessing #81!

Where's this party? Free place - the cafe at church! I gave Matt 3 dates/times that would be ok with us. It was available on my first choice. Blessing 82.

What are we going to do? Well, I had been thinking and thinking about how to entertain these youngsters. I'd already decided to nix a traditional birthday cake and instead do a sundae bar (blessing 83... the idea of a 'sundae bar' is just a blessing in itself!) While sitting at the intersection of 90 and 59 (love that detail?) I literally had a lightbulb over the head moment and realized the whole party should be ice cream themed. Blessing 84 - ice cream party idea.

I had Matt print off simple invitations at church. No, I don't feel bad printing 20 sheets on the church's very nice color printer/copier. I count it as payment for all the secretarial duties Matt had me do last weekend and has planned for this weekend. I do feel bad, though, that when he pushed the print button (it's wireless and he was in another part of the church) that the secretary was prepping to print the paychecks for the week. Our ice cream invitations were printed on top of the paychecks! Oops! So sorry! Let's count it as blessing 85 that she didn't yell at us for that! ;)

Who are we inviting? All our preschool friends and whoever winds up at church this Sunday in the girls' respective classes. I'm half afraid noone will come, but maybe that won't be the case. I sent out the preschool invites Wednesday, and Thursday when one of Audrey's friend was getting in the car she said, "Nana, don't forget we have to go to Audrey's party!" Thanks, little girl. Hearing that helped ease some of my worry about noone being able to come to the party - blessing 86.

More stuff to do...??? What about a pinata? I found these directions on line to making an ice cream cone pinata. I decided to try my hand at this craft, going so far as to make a shopping list for needed supplies. Then, though, I had a change of heart. I decided to use some of the amazon gift cards I've earned from online stuff (blessing 87 - free gift cards!) to purchase a pinata. Amazon had 2 ice cream pinatas - so I ordered the 1 that shipped free! I would have been able to cover shipping costs with my gift cards too, but I just couldn't bring myself to pay for shipping. I hate paying for shipping. Blessing 88 is free shipping on an ice cream pinata. Blessing 89 is our pinata arriving 2 days later and looking great! Blessing 90 is Julia's excited smile when I had her check it out. She's so excited for her party now!

The girls posed for this picture just this morning!

Audrey keeps saying that she's going to have Dora at her party...
And a cake too.
And we're going to watch Cinderella.

Oh, poor child! I don't plan on doing any of those things! Perhaps, her present from us can be Dora related? I still haven't gotten either of them a present to open. Shopping will be happening tomorrow!