Saturday, December 31, 2011

End of the Year

Wow... it's New Years Eve... no more 2011 left... where did it go? It has not been a boring year, that's for sure.
This is the third city (two states) that we have lived in this year. We moved in March then in September, I do not want to move again anytime soon. Between March and August Rock became more social through library visits and going to the parks and I became more fit, by the same activities (1.5 mile walk to library and half mile more to city park). I tried to go across town about twice a week and there was a small park at our apartment complex for days we didn't walk. Hubby started back to college in August as a full time student and that is why we moved again. It was an hour to school for him, now the college is less than a mile away, so our family has been able to spend more time together when he isn't in class. He has really enjoyed the learning process this time around, I guess it is easier to want to learn when you aren't bogged down by work also (like he was at the previous schools). Rock and I started on his ABC's  in September, though the process of homeschooling has slowed quite a bit since the arrival of Rain. I'm sure I will get back into the swing of things soon (like sleeping and eating when I should). The biggest change this year was adding the fourth member to our family :) So moving, Rock becoming toddlerized, school for both hubby and Rock, and Rain coming into the world... I guess that is were the year has gone. Also...

I came to the realization that I have a one month old (as of yesterday) and a twentyone month old (in a couple days). They are growing so fast! Last time I blogged about my family lil Rain had just arrived. now he is not so little anymore... ok so he was never really little, at least not since he left the womb. I was thinking late last night that if my babies keep getting bigger I don't know what I am going to do. Then I thought if I have a little six pound baby i won't really know what to do either. My brother in laws youngest daughter (one day older than Rain) and my sisters daughter (now 4) were both only 6 pounds and that is so tiny compared to my boys. I thought the deliveries went quick pushing out big boys I couldn't imagine having a tiny babe. Anywho, just some random thoughts I had.

Oh, the hats in the pic above were made by me :) I was a pattern tester for  Tricity Hokes Sock Monkey hat.I didn't add all the options and am still a fairly new crocheter compared to most but i think they are cute! And I was able to make both just in time for Christmas.

We had a laid back quiet Christmas this year. Just our family of four, a good Christmas dinner, and a birthday cake for Jesus. The only presents the boys received were the hats and some gifts from family. Hubby and I also didn't exchange presents, except I made him a hat too. (no monkey on his though) We don't want to Christmas about "getting" so we try to tone down the presents they receive. Rock and I created a nativity out of recycled toilet paper tubes, a pop tarts box, and one piece of paper with figures I drew for him to color:
Nativity Coloring Figures

Recycled Nativity Scene
Rock played with his nativity again yesterday so I was very glad that we made it. On the pop tart box I drew 4 different scenes (for each side) to help tell the story. One side had the door to the inn with a 'no vacancy sign'. Another an open field for the shepherd which was continued to the next side to show Bethlehem in the distance with a star above the stable. And the final side, shown above, is of course, the stable. Rock's attention span didn't last for the whole story after creation of hte project but i let him play with it while I at least told the story (without props). He may not of understood yet but I still wanted to introduce the real Christmas story. I hope we can make it a family tradition to sit down and retell the Christmas story in a way the children can interact: like the nativity scene we did this year, a play, having them illustrate it, the possibilities are endless.

I guess now that this year is ending I need to set my goals for the coming year (no, not new years resolutions, just plain, old goals). One main one is to get back into teaching Rock and develop something for Rain as well. I also would like to craft more, I keep saying it but need to just do it.

Hubby and I have prayed in the New Year the past couple years since we got married and plan on doing it again this year. I hope you have had a good 2011 and that you and your families have a blessed new year!

“This is what the LORD says— he who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.”
Isaiah 43:16, 18, 19 (NIV)

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Birthday Blessings Bash coming soon at Life with my Littles

I love entering into giveaways. I usually stick to giveaways that are for cloth diapers and other useful items for the kiddos. But during the holidays you can enter for all sorts of giveaways... clothes, giftcards, toys, toys, and many other items. So I have entered for everything I think our family might be able to use. Though I have only won one diaper so far this holiday season, I am still hopeful.

Well, the holiday season is coming to an end so It will be back to fluffy giveaways for me real soon. And I have already found an event that will be just that. Mama of the Littles at Life with my Littles is having a birthday bash with lots of fluffy goodness. She is blessed with two boys just like me and is having this event for their 2nd and 4th birthdays.
One More Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest
Some of the fluff included in this event are:
Applecheeks, Happy Heinys and Bum Genius. I am especially excited about the Thirsties and the Rockin green detergent!

If you want to enter in for some cloth diapers and accesories yo ushould check out this event in the coming year, too!

Like the cold of snow in the time of harvest
is a faithful messenger to those who send him;
he refreshes the soul of his masters.
Proverbs 25:13 (ESV)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Zanussi Cookers 'Make Every Meal a Masterpiece' Contest

 In celebration of the Zanussi Cookers, Appliances Online is wanting to know how we 'make every meal a masterpiece.' I am entering at Minnesota Mama's Must Haves for a chance to win a $100 Amazon gift card.
 Every meal... even a simple salad, can be a masterpiece at our house... It even became more attractive for my little Rock to share veggies with his dad (or was it the other way around?) I would like to win the gift card, but it is nice to have a reason to share this random picture of food also :)

All these veggies remind me of Daniel...

Daniel then said to the guard whom the chief official had appointed over Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah, “Please test your servants for ten days: Give us nothing but vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then compare our appearance with that of the young men who eat the royal food, and treat your servants in accordance with what you see.” So he agreed to this and tested them for ten days.
 At the end of the ten days they looked healthier and better nourished than any of the young men who ate the royal food. So the guard took away their choice food and the wine they were to drink and gave them vegetables instead. 
Daniel 1:11-16 (NIV)

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Pregnancy Update

Baby number two is here! Rock now has a baby.....


Our little Rain was born Nov 30th at 8:53 am. Weighing in at 9 lbs 2.7 oz and a length of 21 in. Due to some interesting circumstances, Rock was in the room during the delivery and got to share in the experience. He was a very patient, good little boy as his brother was born... it helped that we were in the hospital for only about 30 minutes before their was another baby boy in the room.
The day we brought Rain home it was pouring down rain and the birds were all out to greet him. What a blessed woman I am to now have two little men!

For the LORD is good, and His love is eternal;
His faithfulness endures through all generations.
Psalm 100:5 (Holman)

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Learning ABCs: A through J

Rock is 20 months, well, will be in a week, and my how the time has gone by. I have really enjoyed all the time I get to spend with my little man the past year and a half. he has grown up so much and learned quite a bit. Changing each day, he has so much more he wants to explore and do, so he does.

Learning the ABCs through craft, rhyme, and play has been quite an adventure. I started off doing a week for each letter but realized that would take a while to get through the alphabet, especially once a new little one is in the house. so now we do three days per letter. As I mentioned before, I get my ideas mostly from online searches and other blogs. If you want to see some of my inspiration check out TotallyTots, 1+1+1=1, and NoTimeForFlashcards. (links in blogs i read on the left and my blog buttons at the bottom). When I can't find something I like or that I feel will suit my little one then I just make it up as I go with ideas I have seen elsewhere. We have done A-J so far and are up to the letter K
Here are the overviews (and pictures) of each letter so far...

 Letter A: "A" alligator craft, ants on my Aa's, the ant and the grasshopper Aesop's fable (drawn by me), astronaut "a', "a" apple tear and glue craft, Aa review sheet (Rock learned to say apple during this week and now loves to eat apples as well) Astronaut Aa recognition - not quite age appropriate yet.
 Letter B: "B" bird, letter b collage from magazine, b is for bugs and butterfly handprint craft, b is for bear (the bears are laminated  "b" magnets that we used on the back of a cookie sheet to trace a paper "b") boat (not picture: origami boat that we really used in water) bees coloring sheet that went with bug lesson.
** Letter A and B were my trial letter to see what interested him and what we could do without, letter tracing and recognition from other letters is still a little above his level

 Letter C: C is for Chameleon, Cow puzzle (coloring sheet glued to cereal box before cutting), catterpillar fingerpainting and picture frame, before picture frame is cookie recipe we used (eggless cookie recipe - didn't turn out too great), then barely visible is the chameleon coloring sheet that Rock barely colored... I have found that he prefers puzzles, cutting and gluing... and markers
 Letter D: Dessert collage, Dog craft from simple shapes, dog/dragonfly coloring sheet, dragonfly paper roll craft, drum from coffee can, "d" duck with five little ducks book/rhyme, and coloring. This is where we started doing three days instead of five, so I start grouping words when I want to do more than three :)
 Letter E: "E" Elephant (i incorporated several different elephants i found online to creat one i really liked), elephant handprints Eskimo, Egg hatching, Enter/Exit and other opposites coloring sheet that i drew that morning (i got a little behind on prep work).
**I really start to incorporate more books into lessons from now on, i was doing one or two a week now we do it almost daily (Rock loves to read!) Letter E books included:
I Love My Mama by Peter Kavanagh, Little Elephant's Trunk by Hazel Lincoln, Mama do you love Me, Horton Hatches the Egg, Ollie, and some opposites board books
 Letter F: "F" Fox, footprint fish in fish bowl (with sprinkling of "sand" - though i used cumin because it is waht i had on hand :)  ), cut and paste frog with twisty tongue, Farm box (i made the box before hand for durability and he still plays with it from time to time - - adapted from First Palette's ClothespinFarmAnimals) Books included: down on the farm by merrily kutner and this is the farmer by nancy tafuri
 Letter G: Goat "G" and coloring sheet (read down on the farm again because it follows a little goat throughout the story) Garden coloring and matching game with cardboard watering can (reuse of farm for pulling veggies), gutiar, gorillas papercraft and lowercase g
 Letter H: "H" hands, hippo hat , "h" horse with 'real' mane and tail, hammer shape matching  and review coloring sheet (both from 1+1+1=1), coloring sheet we also used a hole punch (in bottom center of page), Rock loved to hammer becuase he had seen dad do it recently to some nails that were sticking up on the porch - i even let him help me with the real hammer to "hammer" in the nails again.
 Letter I: "I" Iguana, Igloo cut and paste with snowflake stickers, 3d inchworm "i" with leaf sticky notes, inchworm measuring with mama made inchworm (each section is approximately an inch long making it 6 inches long)
Letter J: J Jaguar, "j" jellyfish, jellyfish shape matching, jungle animals matching, homemade jungle pattern matching game

As I get ready to continue Rock's letters I have leaned more towards matching, puzzles, cutting and gluing. I ocassionally add in some painting because he enjoys that as well. Brainstorming for each letter has been a lot of fun and the time I put into planning has been well worth it. We also do some videos from youtube his favorite is this Phonics Song

Oh how great it is to be a mother.This age is so much fun! I hope I can continue to be as enthusiastic about Rock's learning even with a newborn in the house. I en joy this time we ahve spent together so far and know my time will be more divided but I trust that I will still have plenty of time for both my children.

For our heart is glad in him,
because we trust in his holy name.
Let your steadfast love, O LORD, be upon us,
even as we hope in you.
Psalm 33:21, 22 (ESV)

Friday, November 25, 2011

Wow... long time no blog

So last time I was here I stated I had a new baby on the way. Now I'm just waiting, anytime now, yup. I have been wanting to do a lot of crafts lately. Not sure if it is because I know I won't have much time once littl eone #2 comes around or if somehow my pregnancy hormones are releasing creative energy. I created some slippers for my son from The Crochet Geek's tutorial of high top booties... now my niece wants some too. I also made a crochet newsboy cap for my sis which she loves. here are the booties, sorry no pic of the hat.

I found that I have a lot of black and white yarn so my crochet has been very black and white  :)

Also, I started Rock with his letters at the end of September. I search for most of the crafts and ideas online. Two of my favorite sites are Totally Tots: Now I Know My ABCs and 1+1+1=1: Tot School, but there are many others that I have used along the way. This really helps with my need for creative outlet as I prepare crafts and lessons for my son each week. Here are some of the favorites of mine that we have done so far. (sorry can't figure out how to turn photos right now... too tired yet not able to sleep)

F - footprint fish

elephant handprints

Goodnight gorilla little g

Lowercase i inchworms

Letter F - Farm and fence
I will probably do a homeschooling/letters blog soon and also an update on new baby of course, once he/she arrives. Hopefully it isn't months before i blog again, but one never knows.

How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
The children of mankind take refuge in the
shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house,
and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
Psalm 36:7, 8 (ESV)

Monday, August 01, 2011

The Paper Mama Photo Challenge: Yellow

Might as well do a quick photo challenge while I am here....
The Paper Mama Photo Challenge is YELLOW (ends 8/5)

Rock had his first boat ride and boat driving lesson a little over a week ago....

Rock now loves boats and was saying "bo" or "ba" everytime we saw one after that.

This is my Yellow entry this week (I was looking for a banana or rubber duck photo since he loves those but this is more unique I suppose) Check at more entries at the Paper Mama!

God is more glorious than the moon;
he shines brighter than the stars.
Job 25:5 (NLT)


We are getting ready to move again so I haven't done much blogging, picture taking, or creative tasks (like sewing)... primarily I have been packing and cleaning. And looking for a place to move. We know the city but the finding a place has been rough. My husband already has a job there and is enrolled for school this fall so he has been commuting and it has been tough on our family.
Prayers have been very important to our family this month and signs of answered prayer and God's favor have been evident. Even in the small things. I was craving diet caffeine free dr pepper yesterday and it just "happened to be" on sale. and the week before my husband was really wanting coke.... and it was on sale that day. We went grocery shopping a couple days ago and all the lines were super long so we chose one to wait in... just as we did the person in front of us decided they needed something else and got out of line. Also we had a super fast cashier who rang up everything and bagged it neatly all quickly. How amazing is that? Prayers have been a major part of our lives, in all things!
Ah yes... one more thing...
Rock is going to be a big brother before the year is up. I am over the halfway mark so it seems so close. I am due the beginning of December though hubby thinks it will probably be the end of November. Other things hubby and I have discussed about this pregnancy: the gender. With Rock we decided not to find out and we are going to do the same with this baby. I am thinking we are going to have another boy and originally hubby thought it was going to be a girl because of dreams he had been having, but now he isnt sure because he has had a dream with two boys also (Rock and baby #2).

You are my refuge and my shield; 
your word is my source of hope.
Psalm 119:114 (NLT)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Homemade Ball and Shorts

I did a little bit of sewing yesterday and ended up with a few crude completed projects. I made a spiderman ball with a balloon as the "stuffing" and a quick pair of shorts for Rock to wear while running around the house (i would just let him wear the diaper but he likes to take it off... he hasn't figured out how to take his shorts/pants of yet) The shorts are also good for sleeping. Those projects are posted below (I used the ball pattern again just slightly bigger) Another quick project i did was transform one of the shirts i never wear into a quick tank top for Rock. The collar needs some sort of adjustment still but i left the sleeves and bottom hem raw using my pinking shears to add a little more to it (since it was tshirt material it doesn't fray) I am trying to figure out some other items around the house that I can repurpose because my fabric box is in storage for now. It is somewhat sad since i have several started projects in with my fabric that i could be working on but i still try to find other things so my sewing machine gets some use :)

sitting nicely with his ball...
and then standing to kick

Your hearts and minds must be 
made completely new
Ephesians 4:23 (GoodNews Translation)

Sunday, June 05, 2011

Father's Day Gift: Completeishness

So I pretty much finished the project I was working on for Father's day. It still has a few finishing touches and seams I need to reinforce but I won't post again after this for it. So here it is:

I do need to find a new 5 subject notebook to throw into it and will sharpen the pencils before gifting it. But I am fairly satisfied with it. I did omit some extra things like a pocket i was going to have next to the pencils and the extra elastic to hold the pencils near the bottom. But the elastic was enough trouble the first time. (I have never sewn with elastic b4 and will have to try again... later)

I am still trying to figure out what to have Rock do with me. I have debated making candy clay so he can play in it and make something specail for dada to consume :)   or perhaps a simple hand/footprint I am still deciding.

I have told you this so that my joy may be in you
and that your joy may be complete. 
My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
John 15:11, 12 (NIV)

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Paper Mama Photo Challenge: Self Portrait

While I am in the process of making my fathers day gift I will take a break to enter a photo contest... and I will just use this photo while I am at it :) I think it fits well for the Paper Mama Challenge: Self Portrait

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.
Ephesians 4:22-24(NIV)

Father's Day Gift

It is June and Father's Day is right around the corner (after Flag Day... which happens to be my father's birthday). So I was contemplating some ideas for this father's day and searching all over the web as to what I will do for the special father's in my life. I may just do something simple for the grandfather's, including my dad, perhaps a picture postcard like a did for Christmas... but with different photos :P  I will have to think on it a little more but not too long because Father's day may sneak past me if I do.

For my husband I have decided to get more creative yet inexpensive. The project/s I am doing are from items I already had around the house. I found this and decided I would steal  use it:

And I wanted to make a creativity/art case type thing and know I have seen things like what I want online:
On The Go Art Case at This Mama Makes Stuff
Minimalist Kids Art Case
Split Hemz Art Tote
and the SewRayMe Little Artist's Case
Just to name a few...

So I am in the process of adapting the designs to make a little more hubby friendly to fit what he may want... and his new mustache pencils :) I am using an old pair of my jeans and art supplies from around the house
Here is what I have (click for larger view):

This is the first time I have used the sewing machine my mom brought down for me (along with some other sewing materials... like the velcro and elastic). I already broke the needle so I will have to replace that before I can continue. But otherwise It has been great.. much better than hand sewing :) It is a family heirloom that was once my great grandmothers and is now mine:

I also want to involve Rock in part of the process of making the gift so I will have him "write" a note to dada that will be included in the gift. Perhaps I could do a Thumb Bunny loves you card... or maybe some footprints with a little saying of some sort?

Lead me in the way everlasting!
Psalm 139:24b (ESV)

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Mostly Wordless Wednesday: Blue Sky (photo challenge)

The Paper Mama

There is gold and abundance of costly stones,
but the lips of knowledge are a precious jewel.
Proverbs 20:15 (ESV)

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Fun Angles for Spring

Therefore if any man be in Christ,
he is a new creature:
old things are passed away;  
behold, all things are become new.
2 Corinthians 5:17 (KJV)

Monday, May 02, 2011

Paper Mama Photo Challenge: Multicolored

I was going to enter into the Paper Mama Photo Challenge last week that was multicolored using this photo:

But I missed it because my lil' one hasn't been feeling well. Hopefully when he is in better shape (and the weather is not so wet) we will be able to get out and take some photos for the current photo challenge: Spring. I am sure I can find some cute shots of Rock playing outside this spring :)

The path of the righteous is like the morning sun,
shining ever brighter till the full light of day.
But the way of the wicked is like deep darkness;
they do not know what makes them stumble.
Proverbs 4:18, 19 (NIV)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Signing Time

I may or may not have mentioned before that I have been slowly teaching Rock some sign language. I ran out of useful signs for babies that I knew and had to start looking them up. Then at our local library I recently discovered Signing Time. I love the Volume 1 Baby signing Time and will probably buy it sometime soon. Rock's favorite song is "The Pets I Love"

Baby Signing Time Vol. 1: It's Baby Signing Time - Preview from Signing Time on Vimeo

Rock only consistently does about three signs: milk, eat, and all done. Though he has also tried: more, fish, water, potty, and probably a couple others that i can't think of right now. Milk is by far the most used... lol
(also very difficult to catch on camera...but not quite impossible)

Also we have helped dadda some in the garden. Mostly throwing dirt and rocks, pulling up grass, and running off with important items like the watering can. :)

This weekend we plan on going to my grandparents house for an Easter Get together. Hopefully, hubby doesn't have to work this weekend so he can enjoy a little break too.

Have a great Easter Weekend!

Joseph of Arimathea, a prominent member of the Council,
who was himself waiting for the kingdom of God,
went boldly to Pilate and asked for Jesus’ body.
So Joseph bought some linen cloth, took down the body,
wrapped it in the linen, and placed it in a tomb cut out of rock.
Then he rolled a stone against the entrance of the tomb.
Mark 15:43, 46 (NIV)

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Quick update... I'm back :)

Oh blog, how I have missed you. So much has happened since we were last together. I have changed states once again and my little Rock has had a birthday. Rock is also walking... actually running... everywhere he goes.  Rock and I walk to the library often (a 1.3 mile hike across town). He seems to enjoy story time once a week with the other children in town.

We had our first Easter egg hunt together this past weekend. It was more of an easter egg pick-up than hunt... as you see the eggs were just scattered across the lawn. But Rock seemed to enjoy it, despite the cold. (note the red noses)

I hope to be able to update more often since we once again have internet (YAY!)

Until next time...

Follow God’s example, therefore,
as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, 
just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us
as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Ephesians 5:1, 2 (NIV)

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Top 10 of 2010

Here are some of my favorite photos of 2010 (many have been seen on this blog already)....

Rock's birthday

first smile, 3 days old

June 2010

Cow appreciation day
(Homemade outfit)
August 2010

Dada reads to Rock, Oct 2010
Lookin up to grandaddy, Oct 2010

Leaves, Oct 2010

Fuzzibunz, Nov 2010

First time on piano, Nov 2010

Family (my lil sister and niece)
Dec 2010
But from eternity to eternity
the LORD's faithful love is toward those who fear Him,
and His righteousness toward the grandchildren
of those who keep His covenant,
who remember to observe His instructions.
Psalm 103:17, 18 (Holman)