Sunday, May 31, 2009

A Night At The Mall...

Friday night Hubby, myself and my two little sister in laws embarked on a journey for some Thai food and shopping. Some laps at the mall were needed after shoving our faces with scrumptious noodles and stir fry veggies.... YUM!
 First stop of coarse was the GAP!! Lovely cotton surrounded me but I ended up splurging on my 2 oldest princesses with earrings and jeweled tank tops (Im such a good mommy.)
Pork (Lil Valerie) entertained us with impressions,dances and characters... some of which I can't mention here but were sooo funny we all peed our pants. Re-enactments of certain situations kept us in stitches and MANY pictures were taken.
Beef (cassandra) had a mission. A prom dress!! The mission was accomplished while almost getting locked in and forgotten about at Sears...(where bras come to life according to val)
 All in all the night was a success and memories were made. I will be posting more pictures periodically so please stay tuned.

Today my Hannah Banana was baptized in the morning service. We believe that baptism by water is a personal choice. A choice personally made by oneself to become a Christ follower and be born again. This can't be done as babies, the decision can't be made for you. Only you can decide to become a follower of Jesus.
Hannah has been wanting to be baptized for a long time. She came to me and said very boldly that she wanted to be baptized and she wanted it done when her Nana and Aunts were here visiting. She was determined and made sure I had talked to the pastors.
All weekend I was nervous for her... and excited too... but she was as cool as could be, confident in her decision and focused on the task at hand.
A few weeks prior, we had discussed what baptized meant. Even Jesus... God's son was baptized. We read the chapter in the New Testament and discussed it at dinner. Baptism is a choice and Jesus was put on this earth for a reason, He had a destiny. He had free will and chose to be baptized and to follow God. Now my Banana had done the same thing.
I got the privilege to walk Hannah up to the tank and hang out with her backstage. My palms were sweaty and my stomach was in knots...
I looked over at her across the way and she was grinning ear to ear. She could not wait to jump in that warm water and publicly make her claim. Shamefully, I can't say I was the same way when I did it 14 years ago. I did it knowing I had to. I wanted it over with and behind me. I mumbled something into the mic, practically threw myself under and ran off to the bathroom.. Not Hannah. She knew exactly what she was going to say. On her card she wrote...

"My name is Hannah and I want to be baptized because in my heart I know I should..."

She had a divine appointment with the Lord that day and nothing was going to stop her. Thats how she always has been.
Exactly 11 years ago Jason and I were suddenly surprised to find out we were expecting. Emma was 9 months old and we were prepared to be a permanent family of 3!! Back then we considered her an "accident." But to the Lord, she was placed on this earth for such a time as this. All my children were. God had a purpose for her and He has a plan for her.
As I looked across the baptismal tank my heart swelled with pride. I know God has something big planned for her and I know she will follow Him. Her faith puts mine to shame and her relationship with Jesus is to be admired. I wonder where His calling will take her and I pray it won't be too far.
My Banana was always special... from the first day I met her I knew... I knew something was different about her. Now as she gets older I know a little more. I cry because I see God preparing her every day. I see her yearning to read the bible and I see her stride towards completing all her Mpact lessons. I pray that I can be the mother God needs me to be to raise her for His timing and I sit here and wonder what I did to ever deserve to be the mother of this very special little girl. A little girl who will grow up and undoubtedly preach the gospel to every creature....

Ten Minutes...

I have exactly 10 minutes to write this blog before I have to jet out of my little red house for yet another mommy adventure. My home has been crazy with visitors,outings and fun. Family flew in last wednesday afternoon and will remain with us through half of this coming week. We have had so much fun shopping,swimming and just catching up on two years worth of living.
Our Homeschool conference is quickly approaching and we eagerly await to pack up the car and head out on our adventures. Two and a half weeks left until we go! Yaaa!!!
Once we return I will be insane busy consigning and organizing everything I own to sell at the August Switcharoo's sale. All proceeds from that sale will be rolled right into Savannah 2009!! Another must on our summer list of to-do's....
Biltmore also has KIDS FREE ALL SUMMER... for anyone that is interested.
I must be off. Time to load up the car and be off. I have plenty of pictures to post tonight so stay tuned.......
xoxo GapGirl

Saturday, May 23, 2009

I Have A Confession...

I bought more flowers at Lowes... Perennials of coarse! I believe I ran out of room in my front garden and now am spilling on to the sides of my home. But I won't stop buying them, they are just too beautiful to leave on the shelf. Is this considered an obsession? Oh well... I can add this to my list !

A Weekend Garden Update...

"Oh Mr. Sun Sun Mister golden sun... please shine down on meeeee....."

Remember that song? Thats what I want to sing to the sky right now. We have had a bit of clouds the past... 3 WEEKS and are in desperate need of glorious sunshine. Despite the sometimes dreary weather my flowers have started to bloom. My pink roses are all over and my yellow roses have many buds on them. I can't wait to see what they look like!

My butterfly bush has bloomed and is taller than Molly!! In a few days it will be a burst with purple flowers everywhere!!!  Pinching back the leaves early in the season really helped it get "bushier" and huge. So glad I did that.

My sunflowers have not reached bloom time yet and probably won't for a while but they certainly are BIG! The fertilizer started kicking in and the leaves are growing big!!! My biggest one was accidentally planted right next to my echinachea... sadly I had to transplant it to where all the other ones were growing. She did NOT like that at all. She went into immediate shock right before my eyes. It was so strange. As I replanted and watered she literally started to shrivel. As crazy as this may sound I was so upset!! As any good flower mommy will do, I held an all day/ evening vigil and watered watered watered!!! I drowned that poor thing and when she was completely waterlogged... I drowned her some more.. for 2 days I kept a bedside vigil.... on day 3 I woke up and ran outside to see how she fared thru the night and lo and behold... She was upright and shining bright!!!! I was soo happy. We had to trim a few leaves in the process and she does look a bit battered but she survived and is now growing well!!! SHe is no longer the biggest but she is a close 2nd (or 3rd?)

My Daylillies have not bloomed yet but are pretty.

My Salvia are recovered and doing great! (I rescued her from the throw away bin at Lowes)

My Hydrangias are beautiful but have not bloomed?? This is year 2 and Im getting impatient!! I want flowers!!!

Hostas!!! Where to begin?? I was sure I lost those forever based on last years burnt leaves and sad production. But they came back this year bigger and better and 4 out of 5 have bloomed!!!

My Lilac bush( well actually twig...) Is great and tiny... but doing great!

Elephant ears are getting bigger. I love love love them. I think they are the absolute coolest plants EVER!!! My 3 in the front are doing well but my 4 in the back suddenly are very droopy??? ANy Idea?? I have been watering them like crazy but they won't perk up?? Im not happy. I will try and spend the day "fixing" them and making them better.

My Clematis is clinging to everything they touch. They certainly are twisty little critters. I only have one bud and waiting anxiously to see the pink and white flower that will emerge!. I have to buy Lattice for it to climb up soon or im in trouble.

I have more flowers and veggies to report on but that will have to come later. I must be off to Old Navy. $1 flip flops today for Memorial day and Im running out the door right after this post to stock up!!! and guess what colors will without a doubt make it in my cart....

You got it... P-I-N-K! 

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Scrumptious Surprise

I was so excited when Molly and Noah carried a big brown box over to me!! Our lovely mail-lady had brought a package!!
 Inside was exactly what I had been anticipating for over a month. My Gooseberry Patch Family Favorites Cookbook!
 Hubby and I have quite a collection of cookbooks. Most are still packed away in the garage with just a select few on our night stand for late night reading. Once we get our bookshelves we will proudly display them all. Hubby prefers the Wine and cheese variety as well as all William-Sonoma specialty. I do like them but they tend to lean toward the extravagant side... A side I LOVE to indulge but on a day to day basis, its just not practical. I prefer anything southern or Gooseberry. Im really growing my collection and have used many of their down home scrumptious finger-lickin good recipes. Many of which have become a GapGirl tradition and loved (and expected) by many.
 So, you can now imagine my excitement as I opened my new crisp book and sniffed the new pages. Hundreds of mouth watering meals and snacks just waiting to be tried by a very eager crew. 
 I highly recommend any Gooseberry Patch cookbook..large cookbook, booklet or spiral cookbook. You can order online or pick them up at General Stores/ Cracker barrel. Not only are their recipes wonderful but their stories are pure and beautiful! So go snuggle up with your favorite cookbook and become inspired.

Please join Kelli at her home for Show and tell Friday's...

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Muffets Big Day...

Last week my baby turned "2." We celebrated with songs and cake and smiles. Where did the time go? When did she get so big? I have no idea. I must confess I did cry on the eve of her big day. I have no more babies in my home... very odd for me. All my children will always be my "babies" but you know what I mean. I dearly miss the smell of baby skin and the soft coo of an infant. The best parts of the night was always when the house was asleep and quiet... I would pick up my baby (whoever it was at the time) and just cuddle on the couch. Just me and her... the tv would be softly playing and we would just be.
 Baby #6 is still in heaven in the baby closet. We are trying to get her down, we really are... HONESTLY! But the door seems to be jammed just a bit. Perhaps with lots of prayers from my friends and some special tools, she or he will be in my arms shortly... so stay tuned and say prayers for me =)!!!

Its About Time...

It was a true family affair this past weekend as we assembled our much awaited garden. The kids loved any excuse to get filthy and we also managed to teach them a thing or two about each plant. There is always a lesson to learn as we work hard.
 More veggies have been added to this bed since the photos were taken and more will continue to be planted. We all can't wait to harvest and can some delicious red romas. We will also learn the art of canning tomatoes so we will have our supply ready for the winter. I only will make home made sauce and my family will only eat my home made sauce and since my brand is not carried down in the Palmetto State... entrance to my home from out of town guests requiresone or two cases of Tuturosso!!
 My stock recently ran out and left us turning to jars... oh the outrage and disgust!! Anyway, with proper planning and growing we hope these tomatoes can be used for my delicious sauce in the future!!
 Our one little bed will prayerfully turn into 2 next year followed by at least 3 more... one containing lettuces only!! How wonderful to make your own garden salad from.. YOUR garden.
 Next week I will post more pictures and let you know how my crop is growing. In the meantime please pray for warmer weather and sunny days. My flowers need the nourishment and my body needs the tan!!!

Friday, May 15, 2009


Do you like it? More to come, Im just figuring out a new site... and gardening up a storm!!! Pictures and blogging to continue shortly....
Xoxo~ GapGirl

Monday, May 11, 2009

As Sweet As Can Be.. IM 33!!!!!!!!!!! Part 1

YAAA! Today was GapGirl's big day!! The day could not have been better. I spent it with my awesome kiddies and they spoiled me rotten!! My girls worked all day in the kitchen baking me chocolate chip muffins for breakfast (their favorite) and baking my traditional chocolate cake NO ICING! I do not like icing so once a year I get a cake suited to my taste. Yummy.
 Anyway, they begged me to let them write a LITTLE something with icing... viola...
 Well, the cake was delicious. I was sang to, had the garage cleaned up and the van cleaned out. I love my big black van deeply, so having them clean it for me really spoke to my heart. I sat inside it and just Thanked God AGAIN for blessing me with something so awesome.
 Hubby hurried home and made me an italian feast for dinner. Family skyped to say hello.... and I felt so much love. I got texts and FB comments galore. Today was perfect. Another year of family, friends and health. God is so GOOD!

My Day part 2

Today is my birthday! Its not over yet... its just beginning. My kids are in the kitchen baking up a storm and dinner will be delicious!!
 During my trip to the grocery store, I passed one of my favorite super special treats. Stuffed Cherry peppers. Ever try them? I was first introduced to them by a friend back in NY. Whenever we would gather together, she would bring along one of her famous Kathleen Salads... oh, the memories. It was a delicious bowl of greens,veggies,garlic and seasoning topped with theses awesome round delights. Oh boy... they had me at hello.
 Sam's club sold them by the jarful. Im not talking about a mayo jar, I mean a J-A-R... barrel jar. For 9.99 I indulged all day till my hearts content... or I was sick. Whichever came first. (Did I happen to mention I was pregnant with #5 at the time?? Maybe thats why she is so feisty?) Anyway... After her birth, I was showered with delicious meals and jars of stuffed cherry peppers. They are contained in olive oil and stuffed with a chunk of perfectly aged provalone cheese and wrapped with prosciutto. Oh the goodness!
 Since I moved to the south I have not been able to find these Italian delicacies... until I walked past the deli-bar. Low and behold there they were. I quickly scooped up a few and ran happily to the register. They are not always there, but when they are... I buy them!! They don't taste as good as the ones back home... for lack of pure Italian-americans in the south I'm sure ;)... nothing beats their cooking!!!! But they satisfy my craving and make me happy! On Our next trip back up to Ny , we will certainly be filling the car with one of a kind specialty foods only found on that wonderful island... I thought I would share my special find with you. A special treat... found on MY birthday! How special is that???

My Mother's Day Sweet Treat...

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Today was an exciting day for our little neighborhood. It was Garage Sale day!!! Our community had their bi-annual sale. I, of coarse, chose not to participate. If you remember correctly... last year was ALOT of work and very little money. I chose to sit this one out. I did however, tell the kids to get up early so we could treasure hunt.
 As I woke up and drew the curtains back I could not believe the hustle and bustle. My quiet street had turned into a mass car lot. People were coming and going all over. Cars were parked everywhere and people were SHOPPING!! We quickly got dressed,popped some waffles in the toaster and loaded our wagon (with kids and cups.) Off we went.
 I love community yard sales. Its such a great way to chat with neighbors that might not normally cross your path. Everyone was spring cleaning and winter hibernation was over. The kids and I stopped at all the driveways and chatted and shopped. We saw "old" neighbor friends, met new ones and enjoyed the warm sunshine.
 Hannah (miss money bags) hit the jackpot at one particular home. Everyone walked away with a little treasure... happy as can be. 
 As usual, the Pied Piper returned... and I was accompanied back home by 4 extra children. The babies played on the lawn, I watered my flowers and my older girls and their new found friends bought lemonade from the lemonade stand across the street and shopped a bit at "local" sales. We all had a great morning.
 Its now 1 p.m. My peaceful block is back. Most neighbors packed up their goods. Our yard sale is over. The day was a fun day for us. Im looking forward to the rest of the summer...

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Secret Club

Im a member of a secret club. I have been for a long time. My membership card is torn and wrinkled and has been "punched" 5 times. Prior to my initiation, I never knew such a club existed but as my membership was handed to me, I saw the members. They came out of hiding.I was taken under the more experienced members wing and counseled. I had so many questions. I wanted answers... They had some but not the ones I wanted. I wanted out. I didn't want to be part of their group anymore. I wanted to shed the requirements. I wanted to step out and run along the others who knew nothing of them.
 It was too late. I will always be a member. There is no turning back. We all have the same stamp on our heart, there is nothing I can do about that.
 As the years passed and unfortunately my experience grew, I began taking new members under my wing. I was now on the other side, looking at this poor girl, telling her what she didn't want to know. She wanted out. I told her there is no way. She now had the same stamp.
 A couple days ago I got my latest stamp on my card. It does not get easier. Sometimes its easier to just stamp it yourself... you've been down this road before, you know where it leads.
 Im happy for the women who get to put their card away... no more stamps for them. They almost look like the others who are oblivious to us... even though I can't help but be envious that its not me.
 Perhaps one day it will be. I can step out and be one of those smiling women, but my membership card will never be hidden. It will always be with me, close to my heart. One sweet day I will cash it in at the gate. My rewards will be there and I will no longer need my membership card.

Oh My!

What a crazy 2 days!! We were without phone and internet for 2 days and life has been busy! We live in a fairly new neighborhood, so construction is always going on. Since I live next to 2 empty lots, crews come by periodically to "freshen" them up. Since its the spring, they came by to dig new trenches for the silk-screen wall going up and the hydra-seed going down. During their careless digging they CUT thru my phone lines disconnecting me from my cyber-world. I was NOT happy. No need to fear, I quickly scouted and hunted the proper people in due time and today all is well. Whew.. what did people do without internet?
 Anyway, while we were all alone in our computer-free world we had fun. I posted some pictures of our activities...
1) Our broken phone wire
2) Hannah WON a trophy and 1ST PLACE in her Mpact girls club at church. She WON the "Women Of The New Testament " award. She learned about community service, collected the most canned goods for our church food pantry AND earned her Tabitha award! We were all so proud of her. We went to sonic and had oreo sundays to celebrate!!! Hannah works hard and diligent at everything she does. I was filled with pride when she showed me her prize!!
3) Molly made Spy glasses in her rainbow class at church. She now wears them all day... every day. She is hysterical
4) We braved tornado warnings, heavy winds and massive rain. The skies were nasty but saved me 2 days of watering all of my plants and flowers. One of the branches on my little tree broke =(. I was so sad, but all of my sunflowers survived the storms. We look forward to the sun and glad no tornadoes touched down near us!!!
5) We watched the season finale of scrubs with smiles on our faces and a happy pie in our mouth. Yummy! That was some really good pizza!!!!

Now that we have internet, we are back in our schedule, learning about the war, enjoying the sun and making our solar oven.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Solar Update...

Our oven will be assembled tomorrow!!! We have read, researched and collected material. We will asseble as best as we can and then pray for sun so it can work... stay tuned!

Monday, May 4, 2009

49 Days Till...

Our First homeschool conference!! We are super excited and can't wait to cram into our hotel room and begin our adventure. The workshops look amazing and all the vendors sound exciting!! Can't wait to get our hands on some great summer material and be inspired beyond measure. My imagination has me meeting very very large families in long skirts and long hair.Hee hee. I LOVE IT!!! Maybe I can buy some home-made clothing for my kids !! I can't wait. I still have so much to do before then. TONS of pre-registration paperwork to fill out. Yikes... and pray its not too late to schedule the kids into their programs as well.
To Do List:

Book Hotel Room... Check
Send out paperwork and registration fees....
Pick workshops and lectures we want to listen to...
Clean out car...
Pack tons and tons....
Take pictures (tons and tons)...

49 Days!!!!

Yummy Yummy In Our Tummy...

In preparation for Hubby's softball game this evening, I whipped up a batch of home-made chocolate pound cake! After all, nothing says a good ball game like something sweet to eat. This recipe makes 2 loaves and we would have had plenty to share with our other spectators. Unfortunately the rain did not go away and the game was cancelled. We were all bummed and look forward to the rain date!!
 In the meantime we enjoyed our chocolate divinity and nestled in our nest.

Some Of My Spring Flowers...

One of the Elephant Ears (grown from bulbs..)
One Of the Raspberry bushes
Lilac Bush
Still Need More Flowers...
Hostas (yr 2)
Pink Daisies
My row of Sunflowers
Yellow Rose Bush (yr 1)


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