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I Am... Mama and Writer

First Mama.  Then Writer.  Though, of late, the latter has consumed a great deal of time as I work to get things in order to potentially be ...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

To Store Cans

I found a neat resource for storing cans, the ones you buy at the grocery store, if you have a lil' money to spend.  And I do mean a LITTLE.  Nice, right?

If you don't have any money, but you have some cardboard, I think you could still make one.  HERE is one example.  You can find full directions HERE and the diagram HERE!  ^_^  I'm hoping to try it out myself!

Friday, November 25, 2011

Thankful Thursday, Week of November 17 - 23, 2011

Thursday, November 17, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good day; mostly peaceful.  I'm grateful for many little jobs accomplished by Jessie during the time he was home today.  Things I could do, probably, but can't seem to get to because of all the other things I must do.  I'm grateful for his willingness to be helpful.

I'm grateful for the restfulness of most of the day.  I'm grateful for what Ria and I were able to accomplish on the patio tonight and what we hope to accomplish over the next few days or so.  I'm grateful for the amazing workout, with which I started my day.  I've ordered the full thing.  What I've been doing (today and yesterday) is only snippets on a website and YouTube... amazing workout in broken up pieces... I look forward to seeing what I will experience when I have them all together with complete understanding of HOW to do them!  I'll let you know what it is and how it's going after I've had a bit more experience with the real deal... hopefully it'll get here faster than the 7-10 business days!  *sigh*

I'm grateful for the opportunity and blessing of being able to help a friend with a haircut.  She has beautiful hair and trusted her long tresses in my hards.  I'm hopeful she continues to feel happy with it cause it was a joy to help her.  The payment which followed is a blessing, too, but hard to accept graciously because I just loved helping my friend so much!
I continue to feel grateful for the trial of a very painful breast slight case of Mastitis... slight because the fever is VERY low and I'm not flat on my back!).  I'm trying to be thankful in/for ALL things.  I'm not sure what I should learn from this particular trial, but I am trying to be thankful regardless.  :)

Friday, November 18, 2011:  I'm thankful for peaceful days.  I'm grateful my girls are happy to help me in many ways and even come to me saying, "What can I do for you?" and then following the completion of help they have provided saying, "You're the best Mom in the whole world!"  I'm SO grateful for the book the Lord sent into my life via one of my temple angels, which has helped to bring about this gift of good behavior and happy hearts!

I continue to be thankful for the amazing "secret" exercise I'm still doing via tidbits I've been able to piece together.  I may go back to Tamilee Webb tomorrow just for some variety, but look forward to receiving the full workouts I've ordered.  Early birthday present.  And since I haven't had one (cause I couldn't think of anything I'd actually like), the expense is really minimal... but a lot if I just look at the numbers.  *sigh*  I'm glad Jessie is happy to give me what I'd like to have.  It's rare enough that I actually desire any THING, that's for sure.  :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011:  I'm thankful for Saturdays; the special day, the day we get ready for Sunday.  :)  I'm grateful for an awesome workout with my "secret" find.  I've got the sweat running rivers down my body and I love it!  And in only a FEW minutes!!!!

I'm grateful for life, for my children and the amazing wonders that each of them are!

Sunday, November 20, 2011:  I'm thankful for a quiet morning at home with Ria and Jimmy while Tea, Kat, and Daddy went to church.  I'm not "glad" per se, that we were home, but we ended up having a very nice morning just the three of us.  By the end (only 3 hours because they missed most of Sacrament meeting), though, Ria and I were a bit lonely for the rest of the gang!

I'm grateful for the time and ability to make a nice family meal to eat upon their return.  And a pumpkin pie made from real pumpkin (baked and scraped by moi) to enjoy together after quiet time.

I'm grateful for the unexpected visit from the missionaries.  It was a really great visit and I have hope that Jessie is now acting on a "challenge" they/I made him to read more Bible at each reading.  Here's hoping!  ;)

Monday, November 21, 2011:  I'm thankful for children who try to behave well all the time.  They (as I) fail miserably at times, but they try SO hard.  I'm so grateful for them!

I'm thankful for a great short workout from my "secret" source.  ^_^  I look forward to receiving what I have ordered so I can get some experience with the actual workout and share what I've found if it's as wonderful as it already seems!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011:  I'm thankful for my brother Josh.  He was a bit of a pain in the neck when we were kids.  ;)  I was sorta jealous of his cocky confidence and lack of concern about the threats our parents made.. okay, truth: I was seriously jealous.  Fast Forward to now... I'm not jealous anymore.  I'm just happy for him!  He's become (and becoming) an amazing man who is an inspiration!  He is a really hard worker.  He is loving, kind and super helpful.  He is service oriented, obedient to the principles and precepts that matter most.  He is a righteous Priesthood holder and a strong Spiritual Leader, striving to be better, for his family and in his Ward.  He is a GOOD person always trying to be better.  I love him and want to say:  HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!  I hope it's a wonderful day for you and yours!!!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011:  I'm thankful for a relaxing and productive day.  I was so busy from morn until night that I didn't get my exercises in.  It's been more difficult, too, since I stopped just leaving Jimmy with Jess.  I'm going to ask him to step back in as baby-care provider so I can get the sweat flowin' again.  I definitely need it!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Thankful Thursday, Week of December 15 - , 2011

Thursday, December 15, 2011:  I'm thankful for a hubby who will do the grocery shopping when either I and/or the kiddos are ill.  I'm grateful for my "secret" workout and the bits I do to start and end my day, which help so much!  I'm grateful that we have a little money to spend for Christmas and hopeful that I'll be able to get out and do some Thrift Store shopping SOON.  (I was planning to do some today, but ended up sick instead.)  I'm grateful for Heavenly Father's Plan of Salvation and Happiness and for my growing understanding of His Ways!  God is AWESOME!

Friday, December 16, 2011:  I'm thankful for my birthday.  It was a peaceful day spent with my family.  Jessie even had the evening off (we thought we would be going to my Church Social, but since the kiddos and I were sick, we stayed home).  I'm grateful for 36 years in this beautiful life.

Saturday, December 17, 2011:  I'm thankful for a restful day at home in which to heal.

Sunday, December 18, 2011:  I'm thankful for another restful day at home.  I'm grateful for this time to realize how much nicer it is to be well.  ^_^

Monday, December 19, 2011:  I'm thankful for returning health.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011:  I'm thankful for the time we were able to spend as a family as well as the opportunity I was able to go Visiting Teaching with only JMy in tow.  I enjoy the decreased responsibility for 2 hours.  I sure love coming home to my sweet girls after the time away!  There are some who have made it known that they think I'm a little bit nuts, but I miss them if I'm gone for 2 hours or more!  I'm so very VERY grateful for the Mother-heart our Lord is blessing into me!!!  It's such a change and SUCH a joyous one!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011:  I'm thankful for the opportunity to go Christmas shopping with help from my Ward.  We were blessed with some gift certificates and I was able to get each of our girls the one thing they asked for (and a little more)!  ^_^  God is SO good to us!  Even amid the trials, which, lest you think they are absent, I declare have been coming hard and fast and thick and heavy... even amid them God is mindful, He is providing, and even IN the trials He blesses me and mine.  I'm SO grateful!!!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Pride; the most insidious of sins

I really believe Pride is the root of all evil.  It shoots out all kinds of different sins, but if you look back to where the sin came from, it seems like Pride is always at the root of the problems.

Misfit Cignet is one of the blogs I read pretty regularly.  She's written some really thought provoking posts and the one I read most recently is, to me, all about Pride.  In it, she's actually writing about all the ways that we may, as humans, try to DO things that are righteous for those in observation of us to see and notice our righteousness.  See, it's all about pride.

Anyway... I've been thinking about her post, and about pride generally, a lot and seeing problems with pride in little things.  Yet even though they may be "little" the problem is still there; and so I must get back to business and so some weeding.  I've thought, off and on, that I don't have to worry about pride; "I've got that handled now," I might think for a day or so.  But then I only have only to hear a talk, read a Christ-centered blog post, read an Ensign article or some other God-focused, Christ-centered something and I realize that I DO have more to work on.  The problem area may require me to dig a little deeper to see the insidious blackness of Pride on my soul, which I haven't yet weeded out.

And so it is never ending.  Thankfully, the Lord is Love and desires me; in all my weakness!  Bless His Holy Name for wanting a sinner such as I am!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Making Soap

So, I've been making our laundry soap again for the past few weeks.  Instead of doing a liquid soap, I've gone to making it dry.  It's much more time efficient for me and I like using it this way, too.  I was worried, I must admit, that I might have clumping problems or something similar, because we don't have hot water to our washing machine, but no such problems have come about.  YEAY! 

As I've been using my MOSTLY homemade laundry detergent, I've wondered how much more enjoyable I might feel the accomplishment if I'd produced the soap for my laundry detergent.  I've wanted to make homemade bar soap for a while, but hever had all the equipment and got stuck there.  No equipment = no project realization.  Well, this is still a reality, but I've begun to invest in what I don't have, but need, to make bar soap at home.  My first investment purchase is lye.  I do hope, some day, to try my hand at making my own lye from hard wood ash... but I think that experiment is best saved for a day when more of my little ones are not quite so little!  :)  So, I've purchased some lye.  Along with the purchase, I've become an affiliate for the company that sells the lye I've purchased (which is food grade, so I could also make pretzels and bagels with it! Those should be some exciting experiments! ^_^).  So, if you have a desire to venture into the world of soap-making, not just melting and molding premade soaps, I hope you'll purchase the lye you'll need via my Affiliate banner!  :)

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Thankful Thursday Week of November 10 - 16, 2011

Thursday, Novemeber10, 2011:  I'm thankful for the short workout I enjoyed with Tamilee Webb this morning.  I've decided I'm not going to feel too baddly about missing yesterday because one of the Apostles in the New Testament (I believe it was Paul) basically said we shouldn't spend too much time exercising...  I'm not spending TOO much time, thankfully.  But I missed yesterday because of our temple trip and, I think, that is truly more important in the long-term scheme of things!  :)

I'm grateful for all that I've been able to accomplish today.  I'm grateful Jessie was willing to go on a Daddy-daughter date with Kat instead of what we'd previously discussed.  She LOVED it!!  I'm grateful he went, for that date, out to pick up some papers I needed and dropped some mail for me.  SO much more was accomplished this way than I could've done on my own!

Friday, November 11, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good workout with Tamilee Webb.  Short, but great.

I'm thankful for a quiet day at home in which I felt restful and happy.  Ria and I worked on some crochet class.  I got some calling and emailing done for my Calling.  I read some of my most recent study books.  Jimmy stayed busy and happy, crawling around, napping, giggling... after the scare on Tuesday, I'm just happy he's here.  ^_^

Saturday, November 12, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good short workout with Tamilee Webb.

I'm grateful for a restful Saturday.  I'm happy and thankful that Jimmy seems to be doing better (seemed like he was getting the cold stuff back) after a long nap.  And I'm feeling better, too (felt poorly upon waking up this morning, but better after napping a little with him).

Sunday, November 13, 2011:  I'm thankful for great talks at church!  They were especially wonderful to me... Bro. Larson's talk in particular.

Monday, November 14, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good workout with Tamilee Webb.  I'm grateful for a smooth delivery of collected foods (representing much service by Ria, others, and me) for a funeral AND for an easy drop-off of cookies made by Ria for a dear friend.  I'm grateful for the rest I partook of while Jimmy napped.  I've been more tired lately and hoping I can just stay WELL.  Too much to do to be ill.

Tuesday, November15, 2011:  I'm thankful for a short workout with Tamilee Webb.  I'm grateful Jessie was willing and able to do lots of errands as a Daddy-daughter date with Ria.  Kat and Tea each got turns in the last couple weeks.  Ria was SO excited for hers.  And EXTRA excited when she heard about all they would be doing, which she knew meant she'd get an extra long date!  So sweet!

I'm grateful for the opportunity to enjoy hearing and observing how well Kat and Tea enjoy time together.  I'm grateful for Jimmy's independence and dependence.  He sure is growing up and SO busy when he's not tired!  :)

I'm thankful for my Visiting Teachers!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011:  I'm thankful for the amazing workout I did this morning.  I believe the Lord took me on another "walkabout" in the internet last night, which culminated in finding a new workout.  There are very few snippets available online, but I did all of them this morning.  The total was around 12 minutes, I think, and I was sweating rivers!  AMAZING!  I'll share WHAT if I continue to experience these workouts in this way.  :)

I'm thankful Jessie was home today.  I awoke with a VERY tender breast and feeling slightly woozy in my head.  I'm grateful he was home so I could rest a bit more than usual this morning and then exercise without worrying about Jimmy.  I'm hoping the exercise will help my body heal faster than it otherwise might.  I'm grateful for this newest difficulty.  I'm certain it is here to teach me something about myself or life... Hopefully I'll understand the lesson!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Thankful Thursday, Week of December 8 - 14, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011:  I'm thankful for electric ovens.  We are so blessed with such conveniences that our forebearers did not have!

I'm thankful for the blessing of friends with whom to celebrate.  I'm so very happy for a sweet family who has been able to adopt a baby (their first) and the wonderful celebration we all enjoyed because of their new addition.

I'm thankful for my great workout, which I can fit in right before things and still have time for a shower!  I love it.  I'm going to increase my time to the 45 minute workout in a few weeks.  Feeling sort of nervous about that, but I'm absolutely sure I'll be able to get quite fit and strong in the time I desire with the increased sweat time.  ^_^

Today was weigh-in and measurements day!  I've lost another 5.5 inches.  That brings me up to 12 and 3/4 inches lost.  I went down 1 pound on the scale, too.  One pound may not seem like that much, BUT I am nursing VERY often and still JMy's primary source of nourishment... and he is an ACTIVE bubby!  So, I'm quite okay with slow pounds loss, as long as the inches continue to show improvement (shrinkage).  ^_^

Friday, December 9, 2011:  I'm thankful for lunch dates and the gift of getting to know a neat person better.  I'm grateful she enjoys my children!  I was able to bring Jessie a McRib sandwich, probably one of his favorite foods; since we got to eat there, he should.  Right?

I'm thankful for quiet times at home!

I finished my 14 day boot-camp today.  YEAY!  And it wasn't too difficult and the results... AWESOME!  My Ria wrapped her arms around me and declared in surprise, "You've shrunk, Mama!  My hands can almost touch and they used to be really far apart!"  heeheehee  I SO look forward to the day that she will grab hands around me and I know that day is not far away.  ^_^

Saturday, December 10, 2011:  I'm thankful for quiet days at home.  I'm grateful for thoughtful gifts from neighbors.  I'm grateful for surprise visits from friends at just the right time.  I was stressed about something and their visit helped me relax quite a lot.  I'm grateful for my sweet children and their big hearts and desire to help.

Sunday, December 11, 2011:  I'm thankful for the gift and blessing of being a Visiting Teacher.  I got to help one of my sweet sisters today!  I'm so HAPPY to be able to help!!!

I'm grateful for Sabbath days; nourishment via the bread that never molds and the fountain of pure water that truly quenches thirst!; time to read commentaries on an unfamiliar to most parable; and time to study some of Revelations.  WHAT an amazing book of Scripture!

I continue to feel so grateful for the gift and blessing of the amazing workout I'm enjoying.  I'm in my every-other-day of it now.

Monday, December 12, 2011:  I'm thankful for good days to accomplish little things and enjoy a missionary departure open-house and the opportunity to teach my girls to celebrate things even though they may repeat innumerable times; but to find the wonder and magic in each time.  The joy of living and being a Mama! 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011:  I'm thankful for temple trips.  I'm so grateful Jessie takes time from work and other possible activities to go so our whole family can be together... AND let me go inside for a bit.

I'm grateful for the fever and cough Kat has come down with after our trip.  Not sure what I'm thankful for yet, but from every trouble there is always something good that comes along with or soon after it.  Even illness.  I certainly wouldn't plan for her to GET sick, but trying to be grateful when it comes around somehow makes it easier to bear when it does.

I'm thankful for friends and good conversations.

I'm thankful for the wonderful exercise program I've been working with.  It's awesome and continues to bless my life.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011:  I'm thankful for Visiting Teachers!  On of my Visiting Teacher came to visit this morning and what a pleasure!  I'm so grateful to them for taking time out of their lives to spend with me!

I continue to feel grateful for the workout program the Lord led me to and the effects it is bringing to my body and mind!  I get to take my measurements and weigh myself tomorrow.  :)  I've never been quite so excited about such things.  I started to do the tummy exercises since the last time, so I'm guessing it's made some difference (Ria has certainly said it has).  ^_^

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Thankful Thursday Week of November 3 - 9, 2011

Thursday, November 3, 2011:  I'm thankful for a short workout with Tamilee Webb.  I "slept in" until 8am this morning and couldn't make room for a longer workout, but enjoyed what I could do.

I'm grateful for time at home to get things in order and enable my sick-y kiddos to get some rest.

Friday, November 4, 2011:  I'm thankful for another short workout with Tamilee Webb.  I'm seeing a trend.  Jess had to go to work earlier than normal, so I had to rush through my workout.  *sigh*  Life is getting in the way.  I'm beginning to see the truth of what Sage told me a few years ago, "You just have to get it in before the kids wake up, or there's no way to get it in." She was referring to exercise (her choice was running) and now I'm beginning to understand how she truly IS her name in yet another way.

I'm grateful for another quiet day at home.  Hopefully the rest the children are getting will enable them to overcome this cold/snotty nose/cough stuff.  It's old already.

Saturday, November 5, 2011:  I'm thankful for the workout, though again short, with Tamilee Webb.  I was in bed later than normal because of feeling cruddy.  My head was stuffy and feel VERY sluggish.  Jess was off to work before 6am this morning.  That is getting old, too!  I'm thankful that he has a joy, but not happy that the hours are still up over 70 per week.  grrr  The girls are starting to behave in ways that reveal their need for Daddy-time.

I'm grateful for quiet time!  I was able to rest and nap during quiet time today and felt mildly improved upon getting up.  I'm grateful Tea, Jimmy, and Kat actually slept some during quiet time today!  I needed the down time!

Sunday, November 6, 2011:  I'm thankful for the dimished headache I woke up with.  The less pain enabled me to prepared food that needed fixin.  I'm also grateful for Jessie's willingness to take Ria and Kat to church while Jimmy, Tea, and I stayed home feeling crummy.

Monday, November 7, 2011:  I'm thankful for the good workout with Tamilee Webb.  Unfortunately just the 20 minute-er... but still sweaty, so that's good.  This begins my 11th week of exercising 6 days of the week... I'm SO trying to keep this momentum going.  I know I cannot on my own, so I give Glory to God for supporting me and enabling me in this worthy effort.  I KNOW ALL good comes of Him!!!  Praise God for His Love and Enabling power!

I'm grateful for the gift of time at home.  It's such a blessing to have time to spend working on the things that always need to be done around here.

I'm gloriously pleased and happy AND oh, SO thankful for a small mercy and blessing:  the laundry has now been caught up and quite orderly for more than three weeks!  I'm excited about this small thing because Jimmy isn't even 8 months old and it is where it is.  This is NOT normal for me.  In the past, my earliest at getting THAT managed after a baby joined our family was around a year!!  So... the fact that it has been in order for the whole month of his 7th month with us... pretty spectacular.  Just so you know what is so great to me, I'll specify: laundry is washed and put away daily.  This means, to me, that there is nothing on the floor of the laundry room when I go to bed at night.  Of course, Jessie's work clothes end up there, but that's after I'm in bed for the night.  I allow whites to remain in a basket and still count my job "caught up" because it #1 it takes a WHILE before just whites grow to be a enough to make a load and #2 when they are clean, it's mostly my "underwear" and Jessie's socks which comprise this part of the laudry and those are a huge deal if they are wrinkly.  ^_^  So, I'm really happy about this!!!  Rejoice with me over this small miracle and mercy!  I hope you will!!  ^_^

Tuesday, November 8, 2011:  I'm thankful for the good workout with Tamilee Webb.  Another short one, but got the sweat rollin!  ^_^

I'm grateful for the blessing of gardening with a friend!  It's been such a blessing in my life to have this time to serve once each week for a few weeks now.  :)

I'm grateful for trials which show me who I reall am and how far I really need to go... And I'm especially thankful for miracles.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011:  I'm thankful for the family temple trip we enjoyed today.  I'm grateful Jessie went even though he was feeling poorly and enabled me to go in for a few minutes to put names on the prayer rolls.  Even just a few minutes in the temple is wonderful!  And my children got to spend a few minutes in the temple with me, as per our usual (to go to the restroom).

I'm sorry to report that I did not work out today.  So, I must end my count at 10 weeks straight of exercising 6 days of the week.  I'll still exercise tomorrow through Saturday, all things remaining equal.  Just have to start at 1 on Monday.  *sigh*

Sunday, November 6, 2011


I didn't get to go to church today because of illness among us.  So, instead of going up in front of my Ward Family, I'm going to bear/share my testimony here.  :)

I know God lives and loves me, and you, and everyone... and loves us all the same... for being just who we are.  I know that Heavenly Father is truly the Father of my Spirit, and your Spirit, and everyone here on earth who has a Spirit.  I know that He loves us simiarly to, just WAY more than, the way I love my children. 

When I was pregnant with Ria I didn't "feel" love for her... not really.  I was excited, nervous, even scared.  But I didn't FEEL love for her.  I didn't even know she was a she until she was born (we're funny like that... no checking on gender in utero, thank you! ^_^).  But as soon as she was born I knew I was in love forever!  You see, I was absolutely sure that I would be horribly dissappointed if I had a girl instead of the boy I thought I wanted; I would cry.  Well, I didn't cry a single tear after Ria was born.  Not a tear of disappointment, not a tear of joy... not a single tear.  But I did feel this amazing and full-to-the-top-and-bustin-over feeling of elation.  I found that the little person I'd been growing was a girl and I was full and overflowing with JOY!  Pure, unadulterated JOY and LOVE.  I knew that she was perfect and that I couldn't have loved a boy more than I loved who I had.  And that, my friends, is only a fraction of the way God loves us!  How AMAZING!!!  If you haven't had a child, I cannot convey to you how amazing and wonderful this is.  If you have... well, you know it!  :)  What a gift to be loved Perfectly MORE than THAT by our Father in Heaven, right!!?

And no matter what my Ria does... sure I get frustrated and feel disappointed and even angry at times (I'm imperfect!)... but no matter what she does (or Kat, or Tea, or Jimmy, or anyone else who may join our family)... no matter WHAT, I'm always going to love her/them!  How could I stop?  I love them just because!  I mean, as soon as they came forth out of my body I was in love!  And this amazing feeling has helped me understand the truth of the phrase in the Bible that says, "and we love him because he first loved us (though this is probably not a perfect quotation)."  My children love me because I first love them... so similar to God's Love for us... yet SO much less.  It's awesome, though, isn't it!??

So, I know that Heavenly Father is the literal Father of our Spirits.  I know a tiny fraction of how He loves me.  I do not yet comprehend, though, the magnitude of His sacrifice in allowing Jesus Christ to fulfill His purpose in the Atonement.  I cannot imagine having to leave my child (ANY of them) when they are in the most gruelingly painful part of their life....  But God did that for us.  He allowed and enabled Christ to fulfill the Atonement so that we may be One.  So that we may return to His presence to live for eternity.  What an awesome and amazing gift!  I can think it, but I cannot understand!  God so love us....

I'm grateful for the Atonement.  I have committed some doozies... I am a horrible sinner.  But Heavenly Father is always there for me... for us.  No matter what we do.  He loves us and is willing and ready to allow the Atonement to clean us of our stain.  What a tremendous gift and blessing!  I'm so grateful.  I'm SO grateful to KNOW it!!!!

Heavenly Father has restored the fullness of the Gospel of Christ on the earth today.  The Apostacy foretold by the Apostles in the Bible occurred.  The fulness of Christ's Gospel (including Priesthood authority) was removed from the earth.  Joseph Smith was the instrument through whom God the Father and our Savior Jesus Christ restored the fullness of the Gospel of Christ to the earth.  We are blessed to live in a day when we have the Bible so easily accessible; so readily available.  AND we have the Book of Mormon to confirm the truths in it... we are not reliant upon man's interpretation (which could go in SO many directions) of the Bible alone.  The Book of Mormon adds another witness to the truths taught us and available to us in the Bible.  What a gift!  It is true!  It testifies of Jesus Christ, born in Bethlahem to Mary.  Joseph acted as his mortal father, but God was and is the Father of His Spirit AND body!  God has said by the mouth of two or three witnesses He will establish His truth.  So, it makes perfect sense to me that He would use the words from prophets originating in two totally seperate peoples (but of the same house, originating from the same people of the Covenant) to verify what He would have us know.  And what a gift and blessing it is to see how totally true it is that He is the same and speaks the same truths regardless of WHERE the people are to whom He speaks!

I'm grateful for the knowledge I have been blessed with about Christ's Gospel.  I'm grateful for the Grace Father God has given me which enables me to do all that I do which is right.  I'm grateful to know the truth about the duality and Oneness of God the Father and Jesus Christ... and to know that the Holy Ghost is a part, yet not, of the God head.  I'm so grateful for the witness of the Holy Spirit that I have felt about all these truths and continue to feel about other aspects of truth associated with the Gospel of Christ as taught in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints!  I'm so grateful for God's Love.  I'm so grateful for the Atonement our Savior made for me... for you... for us!  I'm SO grateful!

I share this in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Food Storage Analyzer

Although I haven't written about my desire and efforts toward food storage recently, I do still have great desire to build a strong food storage program for my family.  We are NOT there yet.  Winning the Traditional Year Supply  of 2000 calories for one person certainly gave a huge lift to my hopes that we might be able to get all we need gathered together.  With that great gift of winning that contest, I've thought that we might be around 2 months of food storage for our family of 6.  This was not based on anything... just a guess.

Well, guessing is no longer necessary because Emergency Essentials has a food storage caluclator!  It's really easy to use, though maybe a little time consuming if we're not pretty sure of what we have for food storage.  If you have a list of all you have in your food storage, it will be a lot easier for you to use this tool.  Even if you have to devote some time to it, though, I think the time you spend will be a good investment.  It's rather comforting to see where we stand, as far as the coloric intake for our family which is stored, in our food storage program.

The only real drawback (other than potential time investment; if that's a drawback) is that there is no way to alter the calory counter part for each individual in your family.  This is NOT that big a deal to my way of thinking, though.  For instance, based on the Calorie Counter I found via a quick Google search, Ria would need right under 1700 calories per day... so, an extra 300... well, I think that's negligible AND who wouldn't want to be OVERprepared by any amount, anyway?!?  :)
I recommend this tool.  Let me know what you think of it after you give it a try!  :)

Gift Card Giveaway

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Thankful Thursday Week of October 27 - November 2, 2011

Thursday, October 27, 2011:  I'm thankful for the good workout I enjoyed with Kathy Smith.  Not as much sweat as my best, but got some goin'.  ^_^

I'm grateful for the Host Parents I'm able to work with in my job with ICES.  They are wonderful and generous and I'm so grateful that they are working so hard with our students and giving so generously of their lives!

I'm grateful for 4H!  Ria LOVES it and I love it when it's at my house.  That extra push to get things a little more orderly is such a blessing in my life!  I've missed having it here the last few weeks!

Friday, October 28, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good sweaty workout with Susan Powter (and I added in weights).  Got nice and sweaty... earliest wake up day in a while today: right before 6am!  :)

Happy BIRTHDAY to one of my ICES Exchange Students!  I hope it's a great day for Ida!

Saturday, October 29, 2011:  I'm thankful for the workout with Tamilee Webb this morning.  Did only one of the vedeos (normally do two), but still got a little sweaty.  Nice.  :)

I'm grateful for the opportunity I had to meet with my two ICES Foreign Exchange students.  It was a pleasure to see them in real life again and hear about all they are doing.  What a blessing to get to know them a little better.

I'm grateful for the Harvest Festival/Trunk or Treat party this afternoon.  Jess prepared three pigs at his work (THANKS TO Mr. SAM for donating space in his smokers, which includes the woods chips and energy to smoke them AND was willing to donate the seasonings and spices in the rub on the pigs, but which we not much used because the pigs were of such high quality!!!).  We enjoyed that meat at the Harvest Festival/Trunk'R Treat.  What a tremendous and unigue part of a pot luck meal!!

Sunday, October 30, 2011:  I'm thankful for church.  I'm thankful for lunch, which was mostly prepared by Jess.  I'm thankful for baptisms and my Ria's great desire to prepare for hers by attending others' special days!  I'm thankful I was able to get to sleep really early for me and sleep well through the night.

Monday, October 31, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good workout with Tamilee Webb.  Another 'only' 20 minute-er, but still very good.  Jimmy was awake and crying.  Must answer or Daddy becomes unhappy.

I'm grateful for days to be at home, learn, pay bills, make plans, and maybe... DARE I hope... do some decorative painting I wanna do for my home to feel more like what I want it to be... not so cold and un-me.  :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good 1.5 workouts with Tamilee Webb.  (the .5 comes from the last video on my VHS tape ending mid-way in because the tape ran out)  GOOD sweat on today.

I'm grateful for the blessing of and opportunity to garden with a friend today.  Working in her yard helps me feel more motivated to work in my own!  And spending time in service always provides a nigh on magical uplift for the rest of the day.  God is MAGNIFICENT in the way He has put together this amazing system of Love, Faith, and Hope!  :)

Wednesday, November 2, 2011:  I'm thankful for a good, albeit short, workout with Tamilee Webb.  I woke up later than I have since I switched to first-thing-in-the-morning workouts... 8am!  So, not eough time for a double workout.  ahwell... Still got sweaty.  :)

I'm grateful for the blessing of our little 4H group.  It's a gift to me in two ways.  1: the girls look forward to their friends coming over very much and enjoy the visitors.  2: I look forward to having friends and their children over and feel just a tab bit more motivated, so am able to get the house a little bit more orderly than I get it EVERY day.  So... it's easier to get there because it's happening every week AT LEAST once!  ^_^  LOVE it!  We made wonderful spiders on a stick tonight.  A great addition to the Fairy Garden project I have in mind for my girls.  Since we already have a "visiting fairy" anyway... we might as well develop a garden area for her!  ;)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


So, if you read my TT posts each week, you already know I've been working in my yard.  But I really haven't posted about it as much as I 'could' because I've been too busy and caught up in other things to post much more than the TT.  I'm thinking about changing that for a little while, at least.

I've got one SFG that is up and going.  It's got HUGE cucumber, pumpkin, zuchinni, radishes, carrots, peppers, and tomatoes growing now.  I'm hoping so much for good produce from these plants.  It is QUITE easy to grow big and green plants (at least for me), here in FL.  The challenge is getting anything to complete the growing cycle and nourish my family.  This is really only my third try... and the second wasn't much of a try.  But still.  It can get discouraging to have all that lovely green and nothing above the ground to eat.

For whatever reason, I'm also successful at growing root crops.  This past success gives me great hope for the garlic I've already got growing in half-barrels (given to me a few weeks ago).  I also started another bed.  I don't have the surround material I would prefer, so I've just got some boundary wood to outline the area.  So far I've got one big load of manure and a couple bags of leaves spread out in there.

Those leaves were a story.  Apparently I was wrong when I told my Sister and her Husband that the fire ants down here do NOT all bite at the same time.  They do.  I discovered this after I dropped a bag of leaves into the bed and found lots of specks on my shirt.  Upon closer investigation, I realized that the specks were ants.  All biting me in concert.  Thankfully it was really my shirt, not ME.  But still.  Alarming realization!

In addition to this work in my existing and to create a new food garden bed, I've also been working on weeding in my driveway and a front garden area.  The driveway is barely discernable as such because of all the weeds/grass growing on/in it.  :(  The progress is REALLY slow and because I've not been as diligent as I should, new weeds are coming up where I've previously cleared weeds out.  This is definitely going to challenge laundry for the title of "most difficult and never-ending task"!!!!  Seriously.  But... it's enjoyable work that I can do while the children run around and play... all except Jimmy who sits and/or crawls around eating rocks, leaves, dirt, and grass.  He is DEFINITELY a boy!  :)

The front garden area already has a gardenia bush, two full-size rose plants, one mini-rose plant, and two annoying little trees.  I'm going to dig those up shortly.  I just don't like them and they are prickly in an unavoidable sort of way... not good for kiddos around.  I've only got one little area started there.  My goal and dream for that area is to plant all kinda of edible flowers.  To this point, the only things I plan on planting will be edible and medicinal plants.  I'm VERY excited about this plan and hope it will come together over the next couple years.  The seed purchasing is the difficult part.  Time I have.  Money... not so much.  So, I'm leaving it to the Lord.  :)

I'm planning to update here with my progress in my garden more regularly.  It's going to be an adventure.  I hope you'll enjoy hearing about it.  And, someday... there will hopefully be some pictures to help you see my words more clearly!  :)

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