Saturday, July 31, 2010

My Sunflowers...

Last Monday and tuesday evening storms blew thru our neighborhood. They lasted no more than 20 minutes but had the force of small tornadoes. Trees were down along the roadside, power outages were plenty and much needed rain fell on a very thirsty lawn.

When I went out to survey the damages, my heart sank. All of my beautiful tall sunflowers were down, bent and damaged.

Every year I PROMISE to stake them up and every year I forget. One good storm always gets them and breaks my heart.

Last night it killed me to have to cut and trim some of them down... but there were still plenty that had life left in them.

I brought them inside and let the kids oohh and ahh over the beautiful flowers I GREW from SEED!!

So now they adorn my table, another reminder of God's beauty.

And next year, when I blog about planting my sunflower seeds... (cause you know I will)
PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE remind me to STAKE them up!

Have a great weekend.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Dinner Tonight...

Tonights dinner is an ol' family favorite which stems back to our military/no kids days... breaded steak with yummy ranch mashed potatoes and corn. I used to come home from waitressing at Applebees at about 11 p.m and hubby was just getting off of work at the hanger and our cooking would begin. Friends usually followed us home and we never knew how many people we would be feeding. (some things never change huh?)

My friend Kerri, taught me how to make yummy mashed potatoes and I added the ranch twist. Many good times were had over this meal.

Tonight I will be making it again... this time with 5.5 kids at the table. Its also their favorite meal. Hubby is on an overtime call but should be walking thru the door soon.

I can't wait. Nothing says home cookin like steak fried in the big red pan!!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Crafts Crafts Crafts....

Sigh, No, this is NOT my craft room although I would jut DIE if it was!! One day I know my time will come but it won't be until some of the kiddies are out and grown, so I won't rush things. Until then I will cram my crafts in bins in the closet ad in my bedroom.

Im not sure if its the pregnancy or what but Im CRAVING to do crafts... I NEED to do them. I started knitting again and that has helped a bit but my list of projects have just grown and grown.

I just might need 2 carts at Hobby Lobby when I go do my shopping... which won't be until next week. =p.

Im still on a spending freeze for a bit (remember $1500 for our van repair? UGH)

But next week I plan on getting a few things on my list t get me started on some presents/things I have planned. Wanna know what they are????

1) Paper Mache box, modge podge, pretty scrap paper, trim, buttons and glitter stone accessories. My banana was crowned HONOR STAR and wants a special crown box to hold her treasure. So, I figured I would make her one all pretty and feminine.

2) Sweet P.'s fabric for her blankets

3) Gingham fabris for some decorations I had in mind.

4) Red and white beads, pipe cleaners and felt for some cute Christmas crafts for the kids to make and hand out as gifts (attached to the gift bags of goodies)

5) Start waiting for the craft bags to go on sale so I can stock up for the holidays

So far, thats what I have on my list along with some monogramming letters and some Aprons so I can make the older girls cute aprons as part of their Christmas gift. YES, Im starting now!!! I NEED a head start. Have you counted how many people I need to shop for???

So, I can't wait! Im counting the seconds till I can bring my treasures home with me and start. Until then I will continue to knit and read that AMAZING Francine Rivers book.....

Another late night for me.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

A New Book....

Last night at VBS my friend brought me this book to read. It was just in time. I had JUST finished Minnesota Moonlight (which was GREAT) and I needed something else to dive into at night. Both girls said I would be hooked and finish it within days....

Last night, I came home from VBS (which I forgot to get pictures of...) scurried the kids up th stairs to their beds and quickly jumped into mine. I was so excited to read my new fat big book. have not read any of Francine Rivers works before but everyone that passed by commented on what a great author she is.

Hubby climbed into bed with me and we chatted a bit and caught up on the day and he dozed off.

Me, on the other hand.... not so much. I stayed up WAY past my bedtime and devoured every word. It was addicting and GREAT and sad all at the same time. Im no where near finished. Hubby woke up, looked at the clock and kindly asked me to turn off the light.

I obliged knowing he needed his sleep for the morning...

Tonight, after all the VBS kids are checked in, I will be sitting at the registration table reading my heart out and then...

I will be off to the store to buy a book light, so I can read all night long.

What Christian Fiction books do you enjoy reading???

Monday, July 26, 2010

Not-Me Again...

Is today Monday?? I can't keep track for the life of me. Starting our first night of VBS last night just threw me all off. The heat doesn't help either.

My camera battery is charging, ready to take tons of pictures of tonight. I CAN'T WAIT! Im at the registration table checking in the pre-school kids and writing name tags. Its fun.... Mainly because I get to sit in AC, Get to welcome the kids and wave them on and then spend the rest of the evening chatting until its pick up time.

Hey, Don't judge me... Im almost 7 months pregnant and care for 5 kids all day... Im allowed to want to take it easy AND help out at the same time.

Tonight a friend is bringing me a GREAT christian fiction book called Redeeming Love. 2 other women said it was fantastic. Im looking forward to diving in.

ANYWAY, back to NOT-ME!!!

I did NOT NOT put up the NOT-ME picture simply because Im having a lazy day...

I did NOT look forward (ALL evening) to going home, crawling in bed and knitting... ONLY to drive home with the kids during a lightning storm, have them be totally frightened and have to sleep all over the floor in our bedroom THUS resulting in NO knitting and DVR watching in my comfy bed. =(

It is NOT supposed to storm again tonight and we will NOT be home late because of VBS... so kids will probably NOT be sleeping in my room yet again...

I am NOT already S-T-O-K-E-D for Thanksgiving and Christmas... (but not the cold weather...booo)

I am NOT already making my Christmas lists and making my list of things I need to buy for some homemade gifts and treats for friends and family....

I am NOT already buying dry-goods for our Thanksgiving feast because family did NOT buy airline tickets to fly down and spent the holiday with us....

My older girls did NOT clean out their closet and find bunch of capris that were "lost" in the mess after complaining to me ALL SUMMER that they had nothing to wear...

Yup, I think that about does it for the NOT ME's today...

The clouds are starting to roll in. I can only pray for some rain. We need it so bad. Time for me to go pick up my book and finish reading it before I get my other book tonight and then start knitting again. Its been too long since I picked up my needles. Even though Im such a beginner still, I always forget how refreshing and RELAXING I find it...


Saturday, July 24, 2010

Still Going....

Another day and a bit more accomplished. I still have SO much more to do but baby steps....

After a dip in the pool and an afternoon snooze, I woke up refreshed and ready to get things DONE! Next thing I know, I find myself in our linen closet searching for my beloved baby blankets. I have tubs of some of my favorite blankets that were made with love for my babies. I won't ever get rid of them. I am finding that the older I get, the more I like to surround myself with things that have meaning for me. The same goes for this new baby coming. She too, will be surrounded by things made with love.Here are a few of my treasures....

Starting from left to right...
A knit blanket made for one of my baby's (I can't remember which one) by their Great Grandmother... Hubby's Grandma

The yellow and Pink blanket was knit by MY Nana... for Molly before she was born

The pink and white crochet blanket was knit for Abigail by Jason's Aunt Karen. She also knit a beautiful hat and jacket and booties for her. They still need to be located in storage

The white and pink stripe crochet blanket was made for me by my friend in NY for my Abigail. Her name is Claire (LOVE that name) and she was also our Youth Pastors wife. She ALSO taught a bunch of women how to crochet. I still need MAJOR help but LOVE LOVE LOVE practicing. It makes me feel happy and crafty.

The floral white blanket is from Pottery Barn and is super big and super furry one on side. It was given to me by a very dear family who left our lives way too soon to minister up in Alaska. Jeannie was such a mentor and example to me, not only as a Christian homeschooling mom, but just as an amazing woman period. She is pregnant with blessing #7 due in August with a GIRL too!!! I always think of that sweet family whenever I pick up that blanket.

I have beloved things for my Noah too but they remain in the tub =(

This hat was a gift I just received last weekend for Sweet P. by a friend in NY. Her Grandmother knits these soft hats for babies in the hospital. All donated by a woman who knits with love. I was so happy to open this and can't wait to place it on her head. She will look so cute!

This AWESOME smock dress was also given to me. I will try and have Sweet P. wear it as much as possible, but I will also hang it above her "spot" in our room. Its so beautiful and feminine and matches our room PERFECTLY.

Dinner had to be made and babies needed to be bathed, so I just moved some of her things onto her "spot." A changing table which will act as her diaper station and dresser. I NEVER have used changing tables in the traditional way. They always held all the diapers, ointments and creams but I usually change on a bed or floor.I plan on going to Hobby Lobby when I have the money and buy LOTS of cute fabric, not only to make her comforter like I told you last month, But I want a nice holder for creams and lotions and all those little gadgets babies require... I want it to hang or attach to the end of it and have it hang over, similar to a shoe holder. We shall see how that goes since im not the craftiest person in the world. But I WILL try! Im excited about trying too!!

Did I mention a sewing machine is on my Christmas list??? I get giddy just thinking about it.

Anyway, now the hunt begins for the perfect cute fabric lined baskets... (which I also might make) to hold all of her socks and bibs and BOWS and burpcloths. I will decorate this area all frilly and girly and precious. I can't WAIT!!!

Her crib won't be coming till the end of August. We lent it to a friend over a year ago and due to wear and tear, She graciously agreed to buy us a new one =)
I can't wait to get that setup too.... even though I might not be able to wait that long. NOT if this nesting thing keeps going...

Makes me excited though....


Friday, July 23, 2010


Im trapped in the house again due to the extreme temperatures around here. I would show you how hot it really is BUT my good friend, CHATTY MOMMY threatened me NOT to show any more weather forecasts... (its a real feel of 110 today but ssshhh don't tell her!)

So, after leaving the house in the wee hours of the morning with my Molly to go food shopping, it was back in the house I went.And stayed... Even the curtains were closed to try and keep the sunlight out and maintain a cool temp. U-G-H.

If you know me at all, you know I require 2 things ALL THE TIME.... color AND sun. Which means the moment I waddle out of bed, one of the first things I do is throw open those curtains... every day... NO EXCEPTION! I don't close them till its dark out.

I also need color.... splashes of color everywhere. On my walls, around my house and in EVERY ROOM... LOTS of color.... So sitting in a drape drawn house is KILLING ME! But I will survive because Im strong like that. ;)

Anyway, in hopes of keeping busy and sane, I decided to sort thru Miss Sweet P.'s clothing. I have been SO blessed with literally BOXES and BAGS of babygirl clothing from friends. Great beautiful PINK things too!! So today was sort day. (well actually still is) I took a break to blog and eat donuts.

Could I be nesting already??? I am reflecting back on my list of things I MUST do before baby and feeling he motivation kick in.

So I thought I wold share, since I share everything else with you .....

Piles of 0-3 and 3-6 months...

0-3 clothes for Miss P. That need to be washed and put in her dresser. =))

My sweet friend "DiscoDiva came by today for a nice and LONG overdue visit. She bought me this CUTEST EVER monogrammed baby tote for Miss P. Isn't it the sweetest? She is the best!

The madness has spilled over into my bedroom. (notice the closed curtains?grrr) More sweet things to sort thru and organize. Hope hubby doesn't mind the chaos for a while.

And last but not least.... little booties and socks for itty bitty monkey feet. My favs are those pink UGG-like boots. I think we have them in every size just because I think all girls need furry cute boots... (yes even Momma has a pair.=)
And that is my latest insanity in a nut shell. HA!
For those of you who follow my Twitters, know I also went to Hobby Lobby last night and bought more ribbon to practice my bow making, so tonight I will set up my supplies again and me and my older girls will practice practice practice.
I'll be sure to keep you updated on the L-O-N-G drawn-out process of room switching and fitting Sweet Little Miss P. into our Little Red House!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Blog Fog...

Ok, I think the sun has fried my brain. Most mornings are spent by the pool... or actually in the pool.
Perhaps its just waterlogged?? Who knows. Regardless of the whereabouts of my thinking cap... I am officially having a Blog Fog.
Sound familiar anyone???
I can only show so many pictures of my flowers and my garden. Our days are basically the same.
Wake, eat, pool, float, lunch, school, nap... etc...
Tonight we mix it up a bit. Off to church to hear a great mid-week message. Our Pastor is currently speaking on the rapture and second coming of Christ. Its awesome!! He always includes notes with his sermon and even has a cool binder to organize them all. (yes, I have one=) so I always take as many notes as possible and hold on to them for reference. Last week I missed service due to company, but the church office kindly saved me notes AND a cd of the sermon. They ROCK!
We also have a great church picture directory which I use all the time...but more on that in another post.

My Sermon notes binder

Here is a picture of My sister in law Eva and our Nephew Aaron as we left for church this past Sunday. Notice the crazy flower/chunky jewelry lady to the left??? Yeah, thats me...
Hey, if you can't have a little fun in life then what fun would it be??? The older I get the nuttier I get and i LOVE IT!!!!!

Oh and I think the camera added 10 pounds to my face and bee-hind!!! Sheesh... only 90 days till Sweet P. gives me my body back!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Today Is My Monday

Our summer visitors have left and now its back to the grind... well, not that we really are working too hard, but we are following some sort of schedule and will attempt to get some school done.
For instance... our science consisted of studying and dissecting this HUGE bee. It got trapped in our screen porch and met his demise. It was amazing. We studied the HUGE stinger. The bright colors and the thick wings. Personally, I thought it was GROSS. They grow bugs BIG down here. It must be the heat or something but they are triple the size than up north. Blech...
We also discovered hornet holes under our trampoline. We thought they were ant hills and were ready to call our lawn guys and complain but alas... another science lesson was soon to follow.
Hornets were DRAGGING locusts and crickets DOWN into their hole by their stinger...
It was amazing. We watched for quite some time and then researched them on the internet. Now we have to "take care of it" if you know what I mean??!!
My kids feet are more important than those darn hornets... Sorry tree huggers....

My sunflowers are BLOOMING! And this makes me happy. Of course, they are NOT as nice and healthy as they could be due to my fertilizing neglect but I tried to make up for it and they grew taller than expected and bloomed. They still are pretty!!! This picture was taken via cell phone as we were running late to church this past Sunday... but you get the picture. ;)
My blog is NOT pixel perfect ... oh well.

On another note, I picked up this book at Wal-mart last week and its GREAT!!! Its a Christian book with 3 different short stories inside but they all take place in the same town. Im on the second story and just love it. I have spent the last 5 evenings curled on the couch as hubby watches tv, reading and getting lost in the black and white print. Nothing like some good, clean books!

Hubby didn't go to work yesterday so today feels like a monday. We are having a slow start but will make it to the pool within the next hour. Then some school and then relax... after all it is summer.

(Have you noticed I finally found my italics button??)

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Weekend Wrap-up....

Thursday afternoon my sis-in-law and nephew flew in on a jet plane to visit us for a few days.
We have been having fun catching up on the last 3 years and just chatting. Saturday night we headed to my beloved downtown to hang out

Shakespeare in the Park was performing "The Merry Wives Of Windsor..."
We joined the crowd for a bit and enjoyed the show

After a bit, we headed over the smaller bridge to play in the fountains. A beautiful evening wedding reception was going on in the old mill across the River. The band played "Sweet Carolina Girl", "Brown eyed girl..." and all sorts of favorites. My kids hung desperately close by to catch a glimpse of the beautiful bride. They lucked out as she stepped out of the mill with her groom for some pictures. Molly and Noah danced on the bridge.

We retreated to he other side and continued to enjoy the music floating in the air.Some kids danced near the waters edge and others played in he fountains. Some couples nearby slow danced right on the sidewalk. It was precious!

Here is my Emma who didn't let me take her picture... UGH!

And hubby's "little sister" and our nephew Aaron. She flys home in the morning... I hope it won't be ANOTHER 3 years before we see them again!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

OverFlowing Love....

Lately between my personal bible time and my wednesday night bible study, I feel the Lord has been pointing MANY red flags toward overflowing love. My Pastor has spoken about it recently, my personal devotions have spoken about it and so has my bible readings.
Last night was no different. My devotion said to read 1 Corinthians 13.... the LOVE chapter. Then, I scooted forward to the Thessalonians. I have been meaning to read both short letters for the last few days as Pastor has been speaking from these 2 books... again... Overflowing love.

Its Everywhere I turn. Descriptions on how to love like Christ...

Now here is where I become brutally honest. Its what I am known for, and what I am sometimes NOT liked for.

I sat in bed last night reading and hubby walked in. I told him what I was reading about and what I think God has been speaking to me... I then turned around and said....

Me: " I think its harder for New Yorkers to be Christians more than anyone else...."

Hubby: He laughs and says... "Why is that...?"

Me: "Well honestly, we don't put up with stupidity. We have no tolerance for nonsense and we call things like they are. How can I have this overflowing love for everyone when people drive me CRAZY!!! "

He laughs and said a few things to me which basically were in agreement to what I just said.

Don't judge me. Im being truthful here...

How can we still have this amazing Christlike love as Christians when the world can have us so jaded sometimes??? Especially me... who has a very hard nosed NY attitude.

Don't get me wrong. I AM nice, I DO love and will give you the shirt off my back if needed but I know I am LACKING that overflowing love Christ requires.

I have no problem telling you if your being totally ridiculous or if I think you are wrong.... Sigh...

I found a prayer I wrote in my bible during one wednesday night bible study. It said....

"Lord, let me be filled with overflowing love...."

I guess I just have to keep praying that prayer and reading those LOVE chapters. After all, Nothing is impossible for God...

Even if it has to do with me!?

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What's Going On???

Nothing really! I didn't even blog yesterday because my mind was BLANK! I would pull up a new post page and stare at it completely blank. All my creativity must have been sucked out of my brain or something?? I ALWAYS have something to say, but yesterday... NOPE!

Today is a bit better... but I stress bit.

So, Whats better than to keep you updated on the happenings in our Little Red House!

Tomorrow Hubby's sister and son fly in for a quick surprise visit. We have not seen her in 3 YEARS!! So, we are excited to catch up. I know what y'all are thinking... " I thought you cancelled ALL visitors???"

I DID!!! But how could we say no after 3 whole years of not chatting around the dinner table?? His sister has lived with us before and when she wasn't living with us, she was at our house daily, so its NOT really having company. She will come in and make herself right at home and cook and do all sorts of crazy things. THATS the kind of company I love. HA!

Tomorrow is also my Molly-girls 6th Birthday!!! She is STOKED! and can't wait for presents and cake and THE RED PLATE!! Woo hooo. We will be in full celebratory mode come tonight... (as we decorate the whole house in honor of he birthday girl.)

Yesterday was super boring... but after lunch I whipped out the Backyardigans Memory game and proceeded to play with the littles... to my surprise, all the kids joined in and it was a very amusing game filled with bluffing, cheating, laughing and tricking.... never thought I could laugh so hard. My kids are funny people!

Last but not least, My VAN is STILL NOT FIXED. I have been praying we get the call today to pick her up. Im having serious withdrawal. ( have you been keeping up with my twitters???)

I feel like I will never sit behind her sweet seat again and I miss her comfy cushions and roomy insides. For those of you who have EVER driven in a conversion van, you know its like driving around in a Laz-y-boy recliner. Comfy to a T!!!

Did I mention ALL of our swim gear was accidentally left inside of her??? On the OTHER side of town??? Yup. Found that out the hard way.

I must go, I just might lose my salvation over his keyboard which insists on skipping keys and not working. It might find a new home in itty bitty pieces on my lawn....

Yes, its one of THOSE days....

Xoxo GapGirl

Sunday, July 11, 2010


Mckmama- Not Me Monday
I have not done a NOT ME in a while, so I thought I would participate this week since I have ALOT of nots going around!!!

I did NOT go buy myself a nice sweater cardigan at Old Navy after hubby put me on a spending freeze....

I did NOT chat with the manager as if we were old friends because I am NOT there THAT much to get to know the workers personally!!!

I did NOT wear the CUTEST, BIGGEST pink flower headband to church today, with a pink shirt, a pink bag AND pink rhinestone ribbon flip flops... With a big pink pearl ring... and wore it loud and PROUD!!!
(Now that I broke the ice with my big flower headband collection... I plan on wearing one every week and buying more. I LOVE them!!)

My van is STILL NOT FIXED and is NOT costing us $1500 to fix!!!! It is NOT!!!! ( and it better be running as good as new when all is done or we are in trouble!!!)

I am NOT already planning next years tax return AND next years vacation.... and I FINALLY did NOT convince hubby a vacation is a MUST. =D.

I did NOT over-schedule this weekend and have 2 different guests staying in our Little Red House at THE SAME TIME... and they never met... AFTER I told everyone else they were not allowed to come visit because I was overwhelmed??!!??

Hubby did NOT just see lightning strike in the same place twice... (or actually 5 times)

It is NOT pouring and thundering as if the world is coming to an end AFTER hubby watered our entire yard and gardens thoroughly.

I did NOT just lose power because of the storm and have to re-write this blog... Nope NOT ME!!!!!

On a POSITIVE note.... LORI from EVERYDAY BLESSINGS is PREGNANT!!! I just found out she is 6 weeks along because Im slow like that! I have been following her and her struggle with infertility for a while and know how much her heart yearned to be a mother. She is just the sweetest and prettiest girl and deserves oodles of happiness. Why don't you go over and just say congrats.Tell her GapGirl sent ya, She has been waiting for this moment for 5 YEARS!!!
Lori, you will be in my prayers for a wonderful.... morning sickness free pregnancy... (and for a girl cause I know you want to buy those bows!!! =)))) PRAISE GOD!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Shopping Day Revisited...

This past friday was shopping day! Whoo-hoo!!! I ran off to one of my favorite food stores... ALDI! Aldi is not a fav among many, only the true money saving moms, or moms of many can truly appreciate the savings found among the aisles. I fill my cart overflowing with all sorts of things and it only cost me $120.00. Among the goodies are:
5 dozen eggs
3 packages mexican shredded cheese
2 bars of block cheese
6 boxes of cereal
10 cans of tuna
2 containers of lemonade
Orange Juice
6 bags of different types of chips
Aldi carries no name brands but their brands usually taste the SAME as national, more expensive brands in supermarkets.
I also visited Wal-Mart which is undergoing MAJOR renovations. I had a hard time finding anything but stumbled across school supplies??? I filled my cart with $.25 crayons and $.25 notebooks for the kids to color and play with... AND fingerpaint because Im cool like that.=)

Here are just some of my goodies sprawled out and waiting to be put away. I still had a publix run to do...

Some close ups of the goodies....


I had the rare privilege of shopping alone this time... But when I pulled up in the driveway, the kids ran out and attacked the bags as if it were Christmas.

They oohhed and ahhed over the fingerpaints and crayons. I also bought a new book for Emma that she was just dying for. Molly got a pack of gum she was promised and the rest of the kids were excited over the snacks and goodies I bought.

It was such a good feeling to come home and see them so happy and so thrilled over groceries and small treats. It made me feel just as happy showing them. As silly as this sounds, it was a nice family bonding moment!!! And made my heart smile.

Thats whats so great about families that love each other. We take pleasure in the small things in life and truly enjoy every moment.

Oh and Im sure your wondering... YES! I bought another chicken thing for my kitchen and a cardigan (on sale) for me. It somehow fell in my cart???


Isn't this stainglass suncatcher beautiful?? I bought it at the Family Christian Store just down the road from me. (It was 50% off!)
I just didn't have the heart to put it back on the shelf. It now resides on my sliding glass door in my kitchen as a daily reminder of so many things.
My Garden, of course, first came to mind when eyeing this. You all know how I love my plants and flowers.
But this past wednesday in bible study at church our Pastor talked about overflowing love which only God can provide and how we should never stop growing and asking for overflowing love to give to others...
How perfect!!??!!
If only we were all loveable and huggable... what a wonderful world this would be.
Oh and DON'T FORGET to enter THE CHATTY MOMMY'S FIRST EVER GIVEAWAY!!!!! A $40 CSN giftcard. Whoo hoo. Hope I win!!!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Black Beauty

This morning was full of excitement in our Little Red House... at least the kids thought so. Our big black van has been out of commission for a few days. Hubby tried to fix her himself but due to a complicated work schedule and lack of auto shop in our backyard, off she went to our VERY trusty mechanic.
The kids were thrilled to see the big tow truck pull our beauty right out of the driveway and on to the flat bed. The older girls got sad that she was leaving us. I just sat there and thought, even broken, she is the prettiest van I have ever seen.
YES, our van is a member of our family and takes on an identification all of its own. She has been so good to us over the last 5 years. Trustworthy, reliable and dependable. She is old though and has lots of miles under her belt so its ok for her to take a rest. We are not mad or frustrated. Just THANKFUL we have the money to fix her and that we have had MANY years with NO repairs whatsoever. We have had SOOO many good times with her. SO many trips, short and long. We have crammed an illegal amount of people in her and even camped out in her before. ( I have pictures of that somewhere??)
My big tug-boat is known in my neighborhood and my church. When they see big ol bertha coming they know GapGirls clan is on her way... the party has arrived!!!
We have shoved Christmas trees IN her, furniture IN her and moved to a whole different state in her.
She has been to the beach, the mountains and to Disney.
She was a complete answer to our prayers for a new van. God practically placed her right in our laps. The moment I walked in her (9 months pregnant with #4) I KNEW she was the one. We bought her on the spot without ever lifting the hood or turning the key....
She will be laid-to-rest in the next year or two as we will be upgrading to a 12 passanger van but we will drive her as long as we can till that day comes... and then realize NOTHING can ever compare to our beautiful Black Beauty!!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Tropical Heat

Can you say... H-O-T today?? Im sure the rest of the east coast can also agree that the last couple of days have been brutal. I won't complain too much though, after all, I DO enjoy the heat. I will take a day like today over ANY cold, windy bitter snow day. But when Im pregnant, this extreme heat keeps me homebound for majority of the day. No pool, no puttering in the gardens (except for early mornings and after 730 pm) just me inside my Little Red House. Thats ok. Cleaning and organizing have gotten done.

This year my love of Elephant Ears has taken over. Its my second year growing them and my love for all varieties has quickly taken over. They are just LOVIN this heat!! Happy as clams they are... growing really big.

This is one I bought as a really small potted plant and she has over doubled in size. The corner of my front porch is the perfect place for her, plenty of shade... just like she likes.

Well, these aren't Elephant Ears but they are just growing beautifully in this sun. You can see when I started to use miracle grow on them. The bottom leaves are all thin and yucky but the top leaves are full and lush. OOPPPSSS. Better late than never though. I planted a second round which just finished germinating. That way I can have these all the way till the fall!!

Here are my back screen porch beauties that I bought on clearance for $3. They too were much smaller but have thrived in this spot. I also have miracle growed them and they are getting out of control. At the end of the season I will take out the bulb and stick it in the ground at the side of my house. They should come back....

Last but not least my pride and joy. These are second year Elephant ears and I love them so much. I bought bulbs last spring and planted them in the ground and to my surprise they took. They grew lovely. There are two plants side by side. In my region we are borderline perennials on a lot of plants based on our sub-tropical climate BUT can have cold winters... which we did this past year. I was sure I lost them but LOOK!!! they are back better than ever. This year I will layer double mulch to make sure I don't lose them.

I also transplanted another green EE to the other side of my porch. It wasn't doing good where it was... too much sun. It survived the transplant and looks as if its responding well, so hopefully in the next few weeks it will really grow big. Right now its tiny. Im hoping and praying it gets as big as the others. How cool would that be.

Stay cool everyone and enjoy the sunshine.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Coffee Anyone??

Is anyone else as particular about their coffee as I am??

Yesterday morning, I got up early and got ready for my OB appt. I went to the pantry and opened my Maxwell House Master Blend bucket-o-goodness to find it EMPTY!!!

I knew I was low, but I was hoping there would be enough left for just one more sweet brew.

Disappointed, I stopped at my fav Dunkin Donuts for a hot cup... with specific instructions on how I needed my sweet cup. After the first sip, I knew it just wouldn't do. I wasn't surprised. I HATE any coffee that is not brewed out of my house. Is that weird??

Am I a coffee snob? You will often find me traveling with my coffee mug simply because I cannot bare drinking coffee elsewhere. TRUST ME I HAVE TRIED. Its Filled with Maxwell House Master blend brewed out of my beloved black Mr. Coffee 10 pot coffee maker. Light with 1 sugar.

Out of it comes the sweetest cup of Joe you will ever taste. At least MY taste buds think so.

Hubby is not surprised... just one of my many little quirks which.."makes me crazy...." according to him. Maybe I should pray about this??

So, please tell me Im not the only one with very specific standards on coffee... or anything else for that matter...

What things do YOU need to have "just so" to make your day shine???

Monday, July 5, 2010

Our 4TH

What a GREAT 4th we had! It was relaxing, lazy and low key... which was JUST what the Dr. ordered. The pool, a nap and then fireworks all night long. Here are some pictures of our great night...

The 4th wouldn't be the same without something cute, yummy and patriotic!

Just as the sun began teasing us with a sunset, we headed out back, moved our chairs and had some family fun. The kids played soccer and bounced on the trampoline and hubby and I enjoyed the weather and sunset...

{ Love our Little backyard... }

Once it got dark, the show began... a display like you can't even imagine... BETTER that you can imagine... all thanks to some neighbors and their LOVE of fire. =)
We roasted marshmallows, ate watermelon and screamed loud whenever fireworks were let off. Hubby bought some as well. My Aunt, Uncle and cousin live on the next block over. They had company and we would text right before we each lit our stuff so we could look over and enjoy!.

The night was perfect, the kids had a blast and we all slept like LOGS until morning. How was your holiday?


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