Thursday, January 31, 2008

Thursday Thanks Tank

Have many things to be thankful for this week - mostly small daily blessings that me smile and sigh thinking of God's goodness and provision.

1. That despite his discomfort, Pojke's been a real trooper with teething in two bottom molars.

2. That despite his discomfort after two days of 102+ fever, DaHubby dragged himself outta bed late last week to take me grocery shopping prior to our most recent "snow dump" because he felt the weather was too bad for me to drive alone.

3. That after several weeks of behavioral struggles, time outs, and tantrums, there seems to be a siesta in Flicka's recent negative attitude.

4. That despite drafts, old windows, and a few missing cold air returns, I have a warm home with a working furnace.

5. That regardless of our money situation which had me worried about getting new winter gear that fit the kids, both Vikings are well-equipped with mittens, hats, boots, and warm jackets thanks to my parents and DaHubby's parents.

6. That after a long silence, there's a bit of sunlight peeking through the clouds in a situation with someone in my family.

7. That yesterday is a fifth Wednesday which means FIVE checks this month for DaHubby! Since we are living on the expectation of four, yesterday's check minus necessities is gonna be the first of a couple large lump payments to our debt snowball over the next few months! Wa-hoo!

8. That the elder at our church who broke three vertebrae in a fall in October continues to gain strength, mobility, and movement. He no longer needs his wheelchair in church. He is able to walk to and from his vehicle as well as in and out of the building with only a walker! Praise God!

9. That I have a hubby that (with minimal complaining *wink*) drags himself out of a warm bed at 5am and go out into the dark Michigan morning cold to get into a cold car with 100K+ miles on it (but HEY it's paid for! LOL) and goes to work each day. The first morning of his flu when I had to go out into that same cold dark morning at 4am to get him some Tylenol for his fever it was brutal. I don't know how he does it day after day after day.

10. And, not only does he drag himself out and work 45 hours a week at his primary job, he is now spending another 10-15 hours a week working from home! A company came to the owner of DaHubby's workplace looking for a quote on some work. The owner stated that he couldn't really quote it in the price range the man was looking for. However, the owner knew of DaHubby's desire for more income so he told the customer to talk to DaHubby about doing it at home in his off hours! What a blessing! DaHubby's working for his regular hourly rate doing what he does all day while sitting in his PJ's at the computer at home! While it is a short term windfall, thank you God for the owner who thought of us in that moment!

So, that's my list for the week. Please join the ladies here or stop by Without Fear to see what some of those awesome ladies are thankful for this week.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Wordless Wednesday

(To get the joke of "how does a mom of two little Vikings find time to read?", check out the title of the book! ROFL)
Check out more WW here.

At the risk of sounding like a whiner...

Yea, I know it's Michigan.
Yea, I know it's still January.
Yea, I know it's the exception, not the rule, that it was FORTY-SEVEN degrees yesterday.

It's only SEVEN. POINT. SEVEN. degrees this morning! *shiver*

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Only a boy...

Raising up Pojke is so different than Flicka was at the same age! LOL It's more than each being an individual - it's really just something innate!

I was thinking this morning as I was changing his di*per (don't really want an Google hits or Google ads about those!*wink*) and he had me absolutely cracking up:

Only a boy smells his own foot and goes "pee-choo" and then not only offers it for you to smell too but, when you agree with your own "pee-choo", he then offers you the other one as well! *big smile*

That's gotta be from DaHubby 'cuz of course it couldn't come from me! LOL

Pass The Torch Tuesday: Guacamole TIme!

Been making a conscious effort to include the kids more in meal preparation - despite my phobia of sharp knives and the ensuing mess! LOL The result: a surprising amount of fun! The photo is pretty self-explanatory!

Stop by Kelly's today to see what's up in her PTT world!

Monday, January 28, 2008

MOMS Club submission

February is the month for me to write up a little something for the local MOMS Club group we're part of. While for the most part the "mommy politics" have been non-existent, there are cliques and I've made a few faux pas in my year as a member.

Those who have made the choice to wear their brand of faith a little more prominently have had some issues. There's been issues over email signatures lines in emails going to the entire group containing Scripture. Those who don't "do" Halloween and Christmas don't participate in activities with trick or treating and Santa. Those that don't drink generally won't attend the MOMS Nights Out or Couples Nights Out due to the location of the activity (like a bar) or the fact that so many bring wine and beer to gatherings. And, in a group of nearly 60, probably less than 5 are considering home schooling as a long-term solution.

I have been spending time thinking and praying about what I should write for my little get-to-know-me debut. Here's what I wrote this morning...what do you all think?

Never wake a sleeping baby. Read to your kids every day. Prunes and applesauce are a constipated kid’s best friend. Think back (and it’s not too far back for some of us) to when you were a brand new, first time mom. We were inundated with buckets full of advice from well-intentioned folks. Some of it was helpful; some of it was not. And, we are all managing to find our way as moms regardless.

However, I’ve been thinking lately about what is some of the best advice I’ve received. I was thinking of advice that outlasted a particular circumstance or age group. And, was there a golden nugget of advice that could cross the lines of parenting philosophy, political beliefs, lifestyle, and the like. And, it occurred to me that (DaHubby) and I have one that we are trying to use everyday.

“Will this really matter in 20 years?”

Have to have the newest gadget and/or its update? In 20 years, it will be obsolete. The intentional (or unintentional) slight from a friend or family? In 20 years, it could be an event at which you’ll poke fun. The brand new couch covered in White-Out? (Oh yea, that really happened here.) Twenty years from now, it’ll be some college kid’s hand-me-down and that is IF it survives my kids’ childhood.

And, this has been a regular, nearly daily, reminder to me to think about what am I really trying to accomplish as a mom. As I choose activities for them to participate in, as I allot household funds for upcoming events, and as I worry about if I’m doing the right things and making the right choices as a parent, I fall back on this phrase.

“Will this really matter in 20 years?”

(DaHubby) and I have had a couple rough years financially. We have our beliefs to buoy and strengthen us but we’ve also had to make some tough choices about where our money is going. Particularly around Christmas. Our tree only had applesauce ornaments and paper chains this year – partially due to safety, partially due to finances. Each of my babies only got one gift each. We had to scrape together some extra cash to go over to the Detroit area to see my family. And, we went to my family’s homes without store-bought gifts – only baskets with baked goods and some cans of tomatoes from our garden last summer.

Now I don’t tell you all this for sympathy. I tell you this to tell you that despite our money struggles that this really was one of the best holidays we have ever had. No crazy shopping. No breathless running around. Just time. Time to spend hanging out, making popcorn, watching movies, seeing the lights, making cookies, visiting friends, visiting family. And, some down time to just sit and play with the kids and just talk to (DaHubby) was better than any gift we could have bought.

So, as you face the rest of winter and look towards the beginning of Spring, maybe take some time to consider what you are spending your time on. As all moms everywhere know, we only get 24 hours in a day. Are we investing those hours, that sweat and those tears, into something we will be proud to look back on when our babies are off making lives of their own? Instead of wringing every minute out of our days to stick in one more errand, activity, or commitment, maybe we should be looking at some things we can let go of. Things that won’t really matter in 20 years.

More domain problems *sigh*

FYI - No email, banner photo, or button jpegs/gifs since Saturday night. Last time, it appeared to come back on when someone showed up at the office the next business day around 8am and noticed something was wrong. LOL

So, basically, when you can see my banner photo, the problem's been fixed! *wink*

Saturday, January 26, 2008

A Little Momma Number Play LOL

Thought about this last night as I drove to Walgreens again:

When someone I know (who I will inevitably run into since I looked like crud, hadn't showered yet, and had only left the house one day all week) asks me how I'm doing, I'm gonna answer...

"Well, I got a nearly FOUR year old with an attitude problem.
I've got a hubby on day THREE of the flu.
I've got a TWO year old with two new molars this week
And, there's still only ONE me!"

Luckily, the people I ran into were all very nice and very empathetic...and knew I was exaggerating for effect! *wink*

Friday, January 25, 2008

Minor Milestone...

...that I forgot to share. Guess who got TWO of his two-year molars this week? Yes, my son...the one with his fist perpetually stuffed in his mouth the last four weeks! LOL

Two down, two to go, big guy! Hang in there, my sweet boy!

Week Two: Exercise Accountability Challenge

Well...we're 2 weeks in with 8 weeks to go! And, how are YOU doing?

While I'm not back on the diet wagon as much as I would have liked, I'm finding the exercise something I'm looking forward to and something that I'm doing more of than I committed to! LOL DaHubby has been AWESOME (even despite being sick) at helping me setting aside time to do this! THANKS BABE!

So, my commitment was for 90 minutes and I did 110 this week. How did y'all do? Leave a comment here and I'll update the ticker as frequently as I can today as I dig out from having DaHubby home for two days. LOL

P.S. My domain host is having problems today so my banner photo and some button pics may be unavailable. It also means I can't ck email. So, please be patient if trying to reach me.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Target coupons

I haven't heard from Target in a while. It's been over 2 years since Pojke's registry was an issue and over FOUR for Flicka. LOL Somehow I'm still on their promo radar since I received two large coupon packets from them this week. Unfortunately, I won't be using most of them so I've been trying to pass them on. But, I've had no luck so far.

So, as a last ditch attempt before I pitch 'em, I figured I'd offer them here. I know giving out personal info (esp. addresses!) via the blogs is a touchy and very personal thing but it seems like a shame to throw them out.

If anyone is interested, email me at Mom2TwoVikings at northernbranches dot com with your name, snail mail address, and which ones you are interested in and I'll get them out ASAP.

Remember that all of the following are TARGET only coupons and expire on 3-11-08.

$2 off Playskool Cool Crew (Mike the Mower or Dusty the Vacuum)
$2 off Playskool Busy Ball Popper
$1 off photo processing of $1 or more
$1 off 22 oz Zout stain remover
$1 off Target brand toddler wipes
$1 off Gerber baby food purchase of $1 or more
$1 off 9 count Motts (juice) for Tots
$1 off purchase of two General Mills Betty Crocker fruit snacks, Fruit Ripples, or Nature Valley Fruit Crisps
$1 off purchase of two 1.1 oz Cheerios toddler snack packs
$1.50 off Pampers jumbo or larger OR 180 count or larger wipes
$2 off Pampers Feel ‘n Learn pants, Easy Ups, or 180 count baby wipes
$3 off purchase of BOTH Feel ‘n Learn training pants and Kandoo toiletry or wipes
$1 off Johnson’s Buddies toddler toiletry
.50 off Oral B Stages baby toothbrush or baby toothpaste

And, I got one from a mailing for Flicka's upcoming birthday:
$5 any purchase of $50 or more

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

The crud has found us! :( UPDATED

Last night, DaHubby comes home feeling icky. Up 'til midnight finishing laundry, doing dishes, getting grocery list together, etc.

4:50am Flicka's wakes up from an accident/nightmare
5am Take DaHubby's temp...103! *sigh*
It's 5:23am and I'm off to our 24 hr Walgreens for Tylenol, Gatorade, and ice cream...and a LOT of caffeine for me.

6am Tylenol
8am mucho sweating/fever breaks
11am back to 102.2, more Tylenol
12:30pm more sweating...

It's 24 to 72 hours of this, right? *sigh* The kids and I are gonna have to evacuate soon if the fever doesn't get under control. And, it's grocery day! Oy! So little food in the house. Might have to call in reinforcements so I can go shopping.

Poor baby - this is the sickest I've ever seen him. Any suggestions other than to push more fluids!? LOL

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A Random Meme

After a long dry period of tags, I got one from Thea yesterday about 7 random things about me!

So, here are the rules:
Link to the person who tagged you.
Leave a comment on their blog so that their readers can visit yours
Post the rules on your blog
Share 7 random and/or weird facts about yourself on your blog
Tag 7 random people at the end of your post
Include links to their blogs
Let each person know that they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Been thinking a lot about where I grew up lately. So, my seven random things have to do with my adolescence:

1. My hometown high school is nearly across the street from the old Ford Motor Company test track/airport.

2. I was the captain of my high school’s marching band’s flag corp. Looking back…the outfit? Oy! And, I can still hear in my head the repetition of “eight to five, eight to five, eight to five…” being drilled in by our band director as he was “gently” reminding us over and over and over of 8 steps for every 5 yards of the field. Which reminds me…

3. As a senior, I was one of a few who took that band director’s challenge to march the entire field (goal line to goal line) blindfolded to see if we had trained enough that after marching 160 steps that the ball of our right foot hit the other goal line! And, I DID IT!

4. As a teenager (and in obviously pre-9-11 times), my circle of friends and I would sit at a pull-off area at the end of the main runway at Detroit Metro Airport and dream of all the real cool places we’d go to and see when we were “all grown up”! LOL

5. One of my favorite memories during high school? Participating in my local community’s theater group’s production of Carousel and Tom Sawyer! Neither were large parts but it absolutely turned me into a theater fan!

6. There was an annual tradition where our rival high school would release LIVE CHICKENS in our school’s hallways the day before our yearly battle on the football field! This would be one of the disadvantages of having a Thunderbird as your high school mascot! LOL

7. And, finally, speaking of birds, one section of my high school was build in a kind of “figure 8” with classrooms in two squares with a common hallway and courtyards in the centers. One “square” contained part of our science wing. An odd but regular occurrence in the spring and fall would be to be in a silent classroom during a big test...the exterior door would be open to the courtyard. And, suddenly, the silence is broken by the mega-decibel caw of at least one very large peacock! There were several who made their home there. Talk about breaking the tension and scarin’ the wits outta ya! LOL

And, instead of tagging seven, I'm breaking from tradition and just opening it up for anyone who wants to share! Y'all consider yourselves tagged if you want.

Guest post debut


My first one in celebration of National Creative Frugality Week. Thank you to Becki for graciously allowing me a voice at her bloggy home today!

Monday, January 21, 2008

National Creative Frugality Week

While poking around in a cool resource I stumbled onto, I found out this week is National Creative Frugality Week! While I am hardly the busiest blog in the world, it would appear that the original site who started this isn't spearheading it this year. And, since I have been interested in cutting our expenses and living more sensibly and responsibly, I thought I would take up the mantle in our tiny part of the blogosphere. LOL

So motivated was I in talking this up to some of the bigger "mommy blogs" out there that it would appear I talked myself right into my first guest post ever here tomorrow! (This apparently works like the pastor philosophy that if a church member complains or hints at an improvement that they just volunteered themselves to fix it! LOL)

So, via Nancy Twigg's able advice, here are five things to jumpstart some frugality this week:

1. Write it down. – For at least one week, record every single penny you spend. This will help you see exactly where your money is going and how you can cut back.

2. Cut out extras. – Once you see where your money goes, try to eliminate one or two of the non-essentials such as that cappuccino on the way to work or those extra goodies at the grocery store.

3. Put off spending. – For items that are necessary, challenge yourself to delay that spending as long as you can. Try to use up what you already have in your pantry; walk instead of driving when running errands nearby.

4. Lighten up. – In addition to saving money, look for ways to make extra money. January is a great time to declutter. Pad your wallet by selling your extra stuff through the classified ads, at a consignment store or through an online auction like eBay.

5. Enjoy free fun. – Cut corners but don’t cut out all the fun! Do something fun this week that doesn’t cost you a dime such as curling up with a good library book or visiting a free exhibit with someone you love.

So, perhaps start with these and then come back tomorrow and see my (hopefully) original take on on experience with frugality!

Click here to see my post of frugality at

Sunday, January 20, 2008

I'm finally pretty!

I've never felt particularly pretty. Always felt lacking in all things "girly." Never in style. Wouldn't even know where to begin if I DID want to be "in". Make-up application is still beyond me and I am one of the few women I know who hate shopping of all kinds and would still rather spend extra money on ANYTHING other than a new dress or new shoes! LOL

Luckily, God provided for a husband who compliments my way of thinking! LOL And, he still often mentions how pretty he thinks I am. But, it finally soaked in today....

While snuggling Flicka during our pre-nap routine: "Those sure are pretty eyelashes, Mommy. Where'd ya get those? You sure are pretty!"

DaHubby - no matter what condition I am in - thinks I'm pretty. He sees what's inside and out and still thinks I'm pretty.

Flicka - no matter what kind of day she (or I) have had - thinks I'm pretty. Despite bickering over rules, time outs, what she'll wear or not wear - she still thinks I'm pretty.

How blessed am I? *sigh* Wow!


OK, even if Jesus has born all things like earthly man, I'm guessing He never had to deal with THIS around Jerusalem trying to get all His disciples up to get to church! *wink* LOL
Blessings on everyone's day! Praise Him!

Saturday, January 19, 2008


70 degrees on top of the TV...that's not what our thermostat is set at! LOL
64% humidity? Not a chance due to dry heat.
But, that eleven? That's outside! Brrrr....

And, we're still under a flood advisory from earlier this week AND we're under a winter advisory!



Friday, January 18, 2008

Three Little Stitches

It really wasn't a big deal. I wasn't having any problems. It was just on my mind and I happened to mention it to my doctor when I went in for a medication check around Thanksgiving.

Y' mom was always a "sun worshipper" before we all learned that maybe that wasn't a great idea. LOL And, I was a "water baby" at the neighborhood pool as soon as I could walk as well as a lifeguard most summers from mid-college until I met DaHubby in my 30's.

However, we are both older and wiser now. My mom is a melanoma survivor and is vigilant now with sunscreen and self-checking her skin. I started asking my doctors many years ago at my yearly physicals and "girl exams" to do a skin check each time I saw them. Since I was single for so long, how often do you *really* get a good look at your back and shoulders! LOL And, I can only expect DaHubby to be so observant *wink*

My mom and I have had matching birthmarks/moles on our right upper chest as long as I can remember. Until she had hers removed a few years ago. A "precaution", I think. And, as my mom went through treatment for melanoma, my feelings about mine began to change. I watched it carefully along with two on my face that also match the ones on my mom's face. Then, she had the ones on her face removed as well.

So, I mentioned my mom's history to my doc. She says that there appears to be "some" link but they really don't know how strong yet for families with melanoma. She check out the three largest moles I have and said she could take them all off right in her office. Well, what little vanity I have reared its head as I admitted to myself that I'd rather have a dermatologist or plastic surgeon take the ones off my face! LOL So, I opted for the one on my chest.

It was a 15 minute procedure at most, resulting in 3 stitches. And, those 3 stitches might as well have been 30 for all the thinking it's made me do this week. Thoughts of "what ifs" and "what might this bring". Reminders that my 40th birthday is only 40-some days away. Remembering that my then-36 and then-38 year old body pushed out a nearly 9 lb and nearly 10 lb babies in the last 4 years and just won't bounce back the same way as those who had their babies in their 20's! LOL

Finally (a little off topic but all ties together - bear with me), I realized something related to my tattoo. Now, not everyone knows I have one nor have many people seen it. I got it when I was 25 when I was away from God and trying to cling to anything that would remind me that things would get better...eventually. My tattoo is a graphic of the moon cycle - full, quarter, new, and "three-quarter". I wanted to remember that things are generally cyclical and no matter how bad things seemed at the time, things would improve.

Well, as I looked down at those three little stitches the other night, it occurred to me that when all is said and done I will have a new "tattoo". And, that those three stitches looked remarkably like...three little crosses. Like those of Calvary. And, while they are on the "wrong" side, they are very nearly right over my heart.

And, the little scar that remains will reminded me of the Calvary crosses and THE Cross and the scars my Savior paid for me. And, how He stitched my heart back together.

Maybe not as "pretty" but a much better reminder of a good report and what the Lord has done for me!

Week One: Exercise Accountability Challenge

OK, ladies that have signed up so's "weigh in" day! LOL How did ya' do?

I pledged 90 minutes. And, had planned on walking 30 minutes at our local high school (which opens its "field house" aka the new gym with an indoor track on the second floor where an "upper balcony" could be) on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

I forgot to walk last Friday! LOL

I walked my 30 on Monday.

Then, found a scheduling conflict on Wednesday...well, DUH! We have leadership meetings, midweek services, and praise and worship practice on Wednesday nights! LOL

So, I walked last night for 40 minutes with the assumption that would be it and I'd come in under my pledge when I went to log in this morning.

But.....the internet was out again this morning! *sigh* And, I had gotten up with DaHubby at 5am to try to get something DONE before the Vikings woke up! LOL So, I pulled out a "Pilates for Weight Loss" video and got my "inner core" beat for 30 minutes instead! LOL

So, I did 100 minutes! Yippee for me!

Leave a comment below and I'll try to keep the ticker updated throughout the day as comments come in! Blessings on everyone's weekend if I don't get back to post again today!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Don't Forget: First Check In Tomorrow

If you are participating (or WANT to participate) in our 10 week exercise accountability challenge, tomorrow is the first day to comment here about the number of minutes you exercised this week.

And, one clarification: while I recorded your goals (for a motivation tool! *wink* And, to get the counter set up. LOL), I am NOT keeping track if you are hit your goal each week.

If I were a bigger blog and I had prizes to giveaway or something, I might. LOL But, this is an honor system here, folks!

So, be here (that's an order! *wink*) and tell us how ya' did; what challenges you faced, if any; any "tweakings" that had to be done; etc.

See ya then and see how much the counter "jumps"!

The last "celebration"

Today is one of those days I dread. Pojke's had his cake. And, he had his big boy haircut. The final "celebration" of his birthday? The dreaded well check visit to the pediatrician accompanied by vaccinations! *groan*

Our current ped follows a little different schedule than our first. (We part of a Christian peds practice and our first ped went back to school for her masters in public health because she's going overseas into the mission field.) Flicka had one or two shots at her one year ck up, at a 15 month ck up, and at an 18 month ck up. So, when her 2 yr ck up came around, there were none left.

Pojke, however, has not been in for a well ck in a year so all those that Flicka had spread out over the year are due today. *sigh*

The other wonderful thing to look forward to? It's "only" the vaccinations today - I have to take Pojke back sometime soon for a blood draw - not a finger pr*ck but a needle-in-the-arm draw for a lead test! *lip quivering* It's required if your house was built before a particular year due to lead-contaminated products.

Flicka STILL remembers her blood draw at 18 months and I'm JUST getting her over her fear of going into the peds' office. And, in seven weeks, it'll be her turn for her four-year shots.

So, they've both sailed through shots before and they've both had times they've run fevers. Hard to know how the day will go. Other downer: Flicka is going with us. And, trying to get her to wait in the waiting room like Pojke gets "stuck" will be like removing super glue. *sigh*

And, the icing on the cake? I have an appt immediately following Pojke's down the hall at MY doctor's to remove some stitches I received last week.

It's gonna be one of those days! LOL I will rest in Him. I will rest in Him. I will rest in Him. He who is within me is greater... He who is within me is greater... He who is within me is greater...

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Pensieve's Poetic License Challenge

While I don't technically have to post this until tomorrow, I thought I'd get it down now before my ISP goes all wonky AGAIN! *sigh*

Form for January: terza rima
Topic: beginnings OR fave snack food! (LOL)

And, I give you....mine! *wink*

A brave and bright new year has started
New habits begun with fresh pluck
Old habits and junk food have parted

New foods which offer less yuck
A walking routine will begin
A bargain with self has been struck

Weight gain while not really a sin
But a temple God gave me neglected
Weight loss is a battle I’ll win

A healthier lifestyle selected!


This is DaHubby posting for DaWifey our DSL connection is out for the next day due to system upgrades.


Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Tackle It Tuesday

I updated my personal list of goals for 2008 that I've been keeping at It's more of a to-do list than resolutions but it's reminder system and knowing I'm to "report in" every so ofter motivates me and keeps those goals in the forefront of my mind.

Anyway, one of the things that was on my projected list for February (the month of tax returns! LOL) was to do SOMETHING with the Vikings' closets. Flicka's started out bare - no shelves, no pole, no nothing - and has been that way since we moved in two years ago. Pitiful, I know. Then, Pojke's closet was becoming a morass of any hang-up-able clothes for both kids, boxes, old baby stuff, stuff for Freecycle, Goodwill, and Ebay, toys, you name it.

Our money situation, with living on what Dave Ramsey calls a "rice and beans and beans and rice" financial plan, has not allowed for any "extras" beyond food, shelter, utilities, and debt payments. Yet, we had one of our expected "extra"/refund from an earlier dumb financial mistake check FINALLY come in.

Now, Anita, don't worry! (*wink*) I did NOT go hog wild! LOL $300 went to our debt and the remaining $40 took us to Lowe's for the first time in FIVE months to see if we could do something with the closets!

The before (I forgot to take pics with all the junk still in them):

And, for LESS THAN $40 dollars, I got hand-crafted, CUSTOM shelves for both Vikings... courtesy of my wonderful, multi-talented hubby! (*smiles proudly*) The wood was our only cost and one of the poles came out of Pojke's closet and went into Flicka's.

The after:


So, now I can almost cross off two of my seventeen things to get done in 2008! I still want to change the toy storage around in Pojke's closet and I still need a hanging gadget for all of Flicka's purses! But, hey, I finished almost a month early! LOL

For more Tackle It Tuesdays, go here.

Pass The Torch Tuesday

While part of me SOOO looks forward to the cool things Kelly's kids (who are older than the Vikings) get to discover, I'm trying to remember to remain "in the moment" with what the Vikings can do now. So, while out Pass the Torch moments may not look exactly like Kelly's (*wink*), they are important nonetheless! LOL

One of the most important developments lately around here: self toothbrushing!

While it hasn't been happening solo every night, it's definitely a step in the right direction of relieving "Mommy" of the nightly double-struggle of trying to brush the teeth of the toddler equivalent of whirling dervishes! LOL

For more PTT moments, stop by Kelly's place today!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Do I hear 11,000? *wink* - UPDATED

As of this minute, we are up to 10,400 minutes! You ladies are really stepping up! Good for all seven of us!

So, how 'bout we either get three more people to participate for an even TEN!? Just ONE more person will take us over 11,000 minutes pledged. Think what we could do with THREE more people!! We could easily hit 15,000!

What do y'all think?

(UPDATED: Well, Lisa's commitment put us at 8 folks and at 11,200 minutes! Yea, Lisa!)

Saturday, January 12, 2008

8600 minutes!

Wow, ladies! Ya floor me! So far we have 8600 minutes pledged for the next 10 weeks! How 'bout we shoot for a goal of a minimum of TEN THOUSAND minutes!? Whatcha think?! Let's either encourage more people to join OR pledge more minutes ourselves and see if can get that total pledge over TEN THOUSAND!

Wa-hoo! You go girls!

Friday, January 11, 2008


Attention all you Slacking Sallys! It's time to get busy...busy exercising! LOL

Today is the first day of my 10-week exercise accountability
challenge! This challenge is meant to encourage those who made exercise-related resolutions to be accountable.

And, it is also for those of us Weak Wendys who completely forgo exercise in the winter because it's too cold, too dark, too EVERYTHING and become big bowls of blubbery belly over the winter months! *wink*

In the interest of everyone feeling welcome and involved, there are no strict guidelines or hoops to jump through. The idea is simply to set a goal to accomplish between today and the first day of Spring in ten weeks. If possible, could you put it in terms of "number of minutes spent exercising"? And, here's why:

The only way I could figure out to compare my "apple" goal to someone else's "orange" goal (if ya' know what I mean) was to keep a running tab of how many minutes we all spent exercising each week!

So, after the first check-in next Friday, I'll create a new ticker to keep in the sidebar to show how much time we're spending on our goals.
I can either ask you all for a total number of minutes you PLAN on exercising and then ticker the number we accomplish OR we can just go from zero and measure all the minutes we finish. It's up to you!

We'll meet back here each Friday for 10 Fridays to see how we're doing and to cheer each other on!

While I'm sure I don't have to say this, let us please keep in mind that all of us are at different levels of fitness and capability. ANY addition of time put towards exercising is an improvement. That goes towards are behavior toward each other - but, it also applies to our "self-voice". Don't feel self-conscious if your goal may not seem as "ambitious" as someone else's. Remember - ANY additional time is an improvement.

So, comment to this post with your goal for the next 10 weeks. In addition, comment on your preference on the ticker. Also, feel free to "steal" the button and post it at your bloggy home and encourage others to participate!

Blessings on everyone's goals!!

No more baby curls!



Would have been a good Wordless Wednesday and WFMW...UPDATED

...but couldn't wait to ask y'all with sons: Is this what it's like with boys? LOL

Wednesday night: runs the right side of his head into a table at church

Thursday morning: while running to the van, trips on the sidewalk and scuffs his nose and forehead on the concrete

Then, last night:

During his post-dinner playing, Pojke's pushing his toy bus throughout the house, hits a "bump" in his road which results in the bus bouncing back into his face...hard enough to break. the. truck! *sigh*

Last night:

(By the way: to whoever gave me the idea to have red washcloths around for injuries such as this, so the injured one doesn't see the amount of blood....THANK YOU!!)

This morning:
Why do I see several trips to the ER in my future? LOL

(Oh, one other things...say goodbye to those "baby curls"! At 11am this morning, he's getting his first "big boy" haircut! *sigh* Where did my baby go?)

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Thursday Thanks Tank

It's been an amazing two weeks...changes, discussions, Bible reading, incredible services, uplifting music, conviction, resolution, breaking down, and being lifted up. And, I could feel God's hand all over it. All of it was interconnected. It was a transition not only to a new year but a new part of my walk in Christ.

For the first time that I can remember, I did what I was told. I left it on the altar. And, I've prayed in the moment, during the day more than I ever have. I've read my Bible more recently than I have in months. And, what a difference it has made! In my life. In my interactions with the Vikings. With DaHubby. The feeling inside our home has been more peaceful with occasional bouts of kid attitude as opposed to what the last couple months have felt like: constant rain and storms of acting out with the "freak" occurrence of sunny behavior.

Confirmations were dropping in all over. Things said to us in passing. Scriptures read alone or in silence, then mentioned again unprovoked from someone else. Small blessings popping in here and there. So much has happened and I was unable to blog about it at the time because I was still having the feeling of swimming in it without much perspective. But, now looking back, I've lost some of the detail instead.

Some of what's been going on:

Had an argument with a family member that resulted in them hanging up on me.
Have had a younger (half) sister on my mind and on my heart for issues she's dealing with - physical, legal, and emotional
Had a particularly bad incident with Flicka that made me seriously question my parenting skills and my lack of control when angry.
DaHubby's hours were cut again at work.
Had some amazing family time between Cmas and New Years.
Had a better time than I can describe hosting an old friend and her family who are now missionaries home on furlough. What an awesome 24 hour visit!
Was blessed by the two friends who joined us with their kids for Pojke's birthday.
DaHubby's shop had an employee meeting that ended badly and resulted in prohibitive new rules/guidelines that have shut down any positive morale remaining.
Have lost touch with that old friend who I wrote about here.
Got a "free" and unexpected half of a payment for one of our Visa bills!
Got anointed and prayed over at church several times for strength, vision, wisdom, and re-commitment.
Had my "debut" as a solo worship leader *rolls eyes*
Had the basement flood (again)!

Ultimately, I was immensely changed by the revelation I posted for last week's Thankful Thursday. The last week has been one miracle after another as I think I FINALLY get it about walking in God's peace despite the world's craziness.

And, I've been blessed by time, unstructured time, when I just let go of everything - the worry, the anxiety, the stress - and asked God to help me get through what *really* needed to be done. I've had time to sit and talk to DaHubby after Vikings bedtime as opposed to running around trying to get a few more things checked off so tomorrow's list wasn't so long. I've snuggled the kids more. Got down and played with them. Tossed aside cleaning and to-do's for extra trips to the kids' museum and the indoor playgrounds at our local Dairy Queen and McDonald's. Y'know what? The world didn't come to an end. Nothing was all that different...except *I* was different! I'm still tired, exhausted at the end of the day but at least I ENJOYED the day more, and I ENJOYED my kids more, and I ENJOYED my hubby more.

I'm exhausted (still) but I have hope. I have peace. I have (some LOL) motivation for the goals I've set before me for 2008. I'm excited about I'll be reading and learning and doing this next year. I'm geeked about getting back to homeschooling.

Maybe it's hard to understand if you haven't lived daily with the anxiety I have for so many years - due to personality, due to history, due to the ADD, etc. But, to have a week so filled with peace regardless of life's winds blowing around me is something I've prayed for, wished, for, sought, and been envious of in others is nothing short of an act of God!

Remember that it is only with Him acting through me is this possible has probably been the biggest lesson.

And, with this rambling, I thank God. I thank Him for all He's done, all He's doing in me and through me. The chipping away of the old, icky stuff and the nurturing of something new has rejuvenated me despite some physical concerns and physical pain.

Praise Him!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Pass The Torch Tuesday

Following a small maintenance project on the computer, we realized that the PC's fan now seemed to be working overtime. So, the cover came back off as DaHubby, a design engineer and his shop's one-man computer maintenance department, investigated what was the problem. And, just like at the shop as people stand and watch and look over his shoulder asking questions, he had his "helpers" asking some too! LOL

Another generation of computer-geeks being brought up "techie"! LOL

Stop by Kelly's today for some more PTT moments!

Where's Noah?

As a flashback to last summer when we had the basement flood four times over three weeks, I will be spending part of the morning (once the kids get up LOL) wet-vaccing the basement floor. The tornado watches/warnings passed without incident but there's water, water, water everywhere.

One funny side note: as we sat watching the weather alerts on the TV last night, DaHubby had a minor revelation that would make Dave Ramsey proud! LOL

Prior to taking Financial Peace University, partially due to the increasing cost and partially due to our wasting too much time in front of the "idiot box", we had our cable shut off. Where we are located provides an unusual bounty of broadcast via antenna since we are equidistant between Chicago, Kalamazoo, and South Bend. And, this has also resulted in Comcast coming to our door once or twice a month asking us "do you realize you are the only one on your block without cable?" LOL

Anyway, we're watching TV last night and DaHubby says "hey, ya see that static?" (Every time the lightning flashed the picture skewed for a second.) "Ya know what that means? That means it's FREE!"

Hope everyone near me in Michiana is staying dry and survived the predicted 70+mph winds last night. And, that those of you east of us get the wonderful blessing of these warm temperatures very soon! Hard to believe that a week ago it was nearly 40 degrees colder! LOL

Monday, January 7, 2008

Flashlights and Bottled Water

Pojke's not buyin' it! We've told Flicka that lightning is God taking her picture...which made for several cute moments of her smiling at the sky every time a flash occurred. But, apparently, my son isn't as gullible. LOL He's really worried as DaHubby and I move about the house prepping for a possible dash to the basement because of this...

Pray for us! LOL

I haven't forgotten...

Out of state guests passing through, staying the night in our home - DONE!
Pojke's birthday party for 6 adults and 6 kids - DONE!
MOMS Club newsletter, first draft - DONE! Hopefully, subsequent draft will be done this afternoon after the president edits it and it will be in the mail by this evening since it is supposed to be at International by the 10th! Yikes!

And, this Friday we will be starting our exercise challenge. Ten weeks of a new exercise promise to ourselves to get through the winter "blahs" and into Spring!

If you have started a "self promise" (I don't like "resolutions" LOL) January 1st, GREAT! Keep it up! If you're still undecided and/or procrastinating (like me), finish choosing one and come back Friday to sign up!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Sneak Peek: Just finished...

With three hours to spare! LOL (Since I use pseudonyms for the Vikings, Pojke's IRL name which appears on the front of the engine has been blurred it out.)

Friday, January 4, 2008

Reminding me...

...of what I said yesterday. And, to remember that once I lay something down and give it to God, I am NOT TO PICK IT UP again! LOL

Got in the van this morning to run to the grocery store and party supply store. As I turned the ignition, the CD player kicked on and this is the song that began to play:

In Me
by Casting Crowns

If you asked me to leap
Out of my boat on the crashing waves
If you ask me to go
Preach to a lost world of Jesus saves

I'll go, but I cannot go alone
'Cause I know I'm nothing on my own
But the power of Christ in me makes me strong
Makes me strong

'Cause when I'm weak, You make me strong
When I'm blind you shine Your light on me
'Cause I'll never get by living on my own ability
How refreshing to know You don't need me
How amazing to find that you want me
So I'll stand on Your Truth, and I'll fight with Your Strength
Until You bring the victory, by the power of Christ in me

If you ask me to run
And carry your light into foreign land
If you ask me to fight
Deliver your people from Satan's hand

'Cause when I'm weak, You make me strong
When I'm blind you shine Your light on me
'Cause I'll never get by living on my own ability
How refreshing to know You don't need me
How amazing to find that You want me
So I'll stand on Your Truth, and I'll fight with Your Strength
Until You bring the victory, by the power of Christ in me

To reach out with Your hands
To learn through Your eyes
To love with the love of a savior
To feel with Your heart
and to think with Your mind
I'd give my last breath for Your glory

'Cause when I'm weak, You make me strong
When I'm blind you shine Your light on me
'Cause I'll never get by living on my own ability
The power of Christ in me.

The face that greeted me this morning...

Happy, happy, happy and blessed birthday my sweet son!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Shame on me

I have been really convicted lately about missing several weeks of Thankful Thursday/Thursday Thanks Tank. And, my only excuse (and it is a REALLY weak one at that) is that I've been too busy to stop for some time, meditate on how truly blessed I am, and blog about it.

Shame on me.

And, as I look at another lloonngg list of things that need to be done in the next few days, I am ashamed that I'm having trouble looking PAST the list and reading for the the blessings between the lines.

To do: I have the MOMS Club newsletter due ASAP and haven't started it *sigh*

Blessings: that I have become friends with some really wonderful and amazing ladies through this group...Donna, Melanie, Melissa, Kenya, Amy to name a few...all believers I'm pretty sure...who, if I called them right now, would listen to me whine and moan, they'd empathize, and then they'd kick my butt in gear! LOL

To do: Pojke's little cake-and-ice-cream party for the big TWO on Saturday. Kept small like Flicka's was, to be attended by two of the moms listed above with kids Pojke's age. Favors, crafts/activity, supplies, etc. NONE of it done and they'll be here in about 48 hours.

Blessings: Two years of amazing time with this sunshiny, happy, feisty, strong and happy boy! He makes me happier than I could ever imagine and so glad and proud to be his mom. Three people I know (one IRL and two online) have experienced first trimester losses in the last few weeks. All of them have unfortunately a history of similar events like myself. How dare I fuss, moan, complain, get frustrated over my precious little Vikings' newest mess or demand! What a slap to my Father's face! I was on my knees for YEARS for these two babies. How could I possibly treat them with anything other than love and praise. I WILL be thankful for the miracles He has provided!

To do: scrambling to make an unexpected (to be honest, forgotten) dinner for a family gracing our home tomorrow.

Blessings: The mom of this family is a wonderful, God-loving girl I met about 8 years ago when I was being "recruited" to spend a weekend with Lutheran Bible Translators to see if I was cut out for the calling of missionary! I was still single, no prospects on the horizon at nearly 30, and I was thinking that maybe God planned it that way for just a reason as this. Becca and I were roommates for the weekend. She comes from a family of missionaries with LBT and she grew up primarily in Africa. I have kept in touch with her, financially supported her when I could, and read her newsletters over the years as she met and married Danny, as they trained with Wycliffe down south, as they went into the field in Papua New Guinea, had Anna (the same time I was pregnant with Flicka), and then had Joshua (when I was pregnant with Pojke).

They are now on furlough, traveling, speaking, visiting, training, and they will be passing right by us on their way from the Detroit area to (I'm assuming) LBT's offices in Illinois! THEY are who I'm making dinner for! What a blessing and a privilege to serve a family that has given so much for the Lord! They are making enormous sacrifices for God and His work. I'm flattered that they are even stopping for a visit much less a meal. How dare I lose focus, or more accurately move the focus to myself. *sigh*

Shame on me.

With all these things coming up in the 60 hours, my ADD-rattled brain is having trouble focusing on what needs to be done when and how I am going to get it all done. So, I've decided to in His mercy, in His care. "Offer it up" as my mom and grandma would say. Give it to God and let Him guide me. It'll all get done I'm sure. It always does. I need to just stop stressing about it. So, I'm giving it over to Him and focusing on the blessings.

A Debut and a Purge!

One of my new bloggy friends was recently asked to join the Christian Women Online blog as a contributor. Today is her debut. If you have a sec, stop by and say hi! She did a heck of a job!

And, if Laura's post wasn't enough of a New Year's kick start, try Shannon's! LOL She's starting a new movement! LOL A year of less stuff!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Snowed in: Part Two

The Vikings are becoming restless so at Flicka's suggestion (that's been repeated over and over and over and over and over ALL morning! LOL) we made COOKIES! First batch in the oven now. And, in the tradition of my mom and grandma, guess what their favorite part so far is?

Next, Flicka's asked if I will go outside, get them both a large bowl of snow, fill the tub for a bath, and put them and the bowls in! LOL Sounds like a great way to prep for lunch and a nap! LOL

Snowed in

While we don't have it as bad as my buddy in South Bend, we got enough snow that we juggled things around to just stay in the house today. And, this is how the Vikings are spending the morning...

And, any random white splotches you can see can be blamed on Flicka's White Out experiment from a year ago.

Wordless Wednesday: To Move or Not To Move?

How exactly do they DO that - and NOT wake up? LOL

For more WW, go here.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

A Viking New Year

Well, the kids seem to be recuperating OK. Both are still flinching at anything near their ears but their overall moods have improved.

Last night was spent with Rice Crispie treats, popcorn, movies, and a blanket tent...with a little later than normal bedtime around 10pm. Mom and Dad made it 'til midnight but not by much! LOL

Then, this morning I woke up this morning with a baking/cooking urge like nothing I've had since "nesting" hit before Pojke arrived! LOL Made homemade cinnamon rolls with the bread machine, two loaves of strawberry bread using some of a gallon freezer bag of fresh/frozen strawberries we got at church, Grandma's homemade pancakes and fried taters for breakfast, and the marinade to put some AngelFood steaks in for dinner...all before noon! LOL Then, I sat down, read the last three days' worth of newspapers, then got back up to make lunch! *wink*

Anyway, DaHubby's out in the garage working on some income-producing projects, the Vikings are finishing up a Disney flick, and then they are going to lay down for naps/quiet time. Maybe I'll get a shower and some quiet time of my own then! Or maybe I'll start the MOMS Club newsletter, do the last tweaking of the January budget at, or create the Vikings' thank you notes so I can send them out this week. *sigh*

We'll see...oh, did I mention we got 2-3 inches of snow on the ground with 2-4 more predicted, that my house smells wonderfully and is warmer now with two north-facing window "shrink-wrapped", that I was up with Pojke for over an hour during the night, and that I think the couch and favorite blanket is calling my name....zzzzzzzz.