Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Lesson Learned While Shopping

Its amazing what life lessons you learn, or in this case, what lessons are brought up to the forefront, when you least expect it.

One of my favorite small grocery stores went out of business. Even though it was my favorite, I hardly shopped there due to their insane prices. But their sales on meat always had me stocking my freezer and running into their doors.

Yesterday everything was 60% off. The start of the end. I had good intentions of running in while my kids waited in the car, picking up some things and then head off to homeschool gym class. Those plans were quickly trashed as I entered the parking lot.


At 9 a.m. Cars were practically parked on the roof, and people left with carts overflowing with anything they could toss in.
I knew this was gonna be a shopping with strategic planning. So with that in mind, we headed in. Orders were given, buddies were assigned and central meeting places were talked about. Everyone had cell phones in case we got separated.

We were ready to shop.

But no matter what, nothing could prepare me for what was inside. People everywhere. Lines wrapped around the back of the store. And a level of greed that went beyond my expectation.

My first shot as I walked in and was blown away by the sounds and sights.

After going down a few aisles, I knew shopping with 6  kids was just not gonna work. I set them all to a corner of the dairy department that was already cleared out. Nothing left but dust and weird cheeses that nobody in their right mind would eat.

With them standing still. I was able to slip in and out of the aisles and shop as quickly as I could. I returned to the kids, unloaded and went back in the mob of people.

After about 10 minutes of that I got smart and just put them in line. The lines were averaging 1-3 hours long.

So I pulled up right behind this nice lady. Lets just call her boozer. HA Ha. I just have to. After all, she had a cart full of wine just for her own personal enjoyment.

We chatted a bit and she kept looking at all my kids and my cart full of food and giving me strange looks.

Wait for it. Wait for it...

I was ready for the comeback...

"YOUR saying I'M crazy... look whats in YOU'R cart boozer.... have another swig why don'tcha..."

Ok, I wasn't really going to say those exact words. But I was thinking them.

(Yes, I prayed for forgiveness already.maybe)

I don't even know how long this line was but I do know the lady in the dark blue shirt is really nice. She explained the difference between a fluted and a bundt pan. I don't remember a word she said but I bought the pan anyway.

( Um it was 60% off)

Soon it was boozers turn to check out. The wine just kept coming and coming and once she got a total, I just HAD to know.



Then it was my turn. The above picture was taken halfway thru my line wait. By the time I actually purchased my food, I added about 50 more things to my cart...

My grand total was $136.

Which included several detergent bottles, bounce barS, cascade packetS, Lots-O-ice cream, canned goods, my coffee, and all sorts of goodness.

So, I know what your asking??

Whats this big lesson I learned?

Well, I learned that greed can be a dangerous thing. Food was being snatched out of peoples hands and you had to watch your cart.

I mean, I did meet some really nice ladies while waiting and we chatted up a bit but I remember thinking that if this was a national crisis, my experience yesterday would pale in comparison to the horrors that would take place in all grocery stores all over America.

It also confirmed to me that our grocery stores really only have ONE DAY worth of stock. If their ever were a crisis. Grocery stores nation wide would be wiped out in 24 hours. NO DOUBT.

You don't want to believe me?

Thats fine. I assume you were not on the 3 hour lines we were on yesterday...

Or see the people running thru the aisles

Or emptying COMPLETE shelves of food into their cart.

It really makes you think twice before ever letting your cabinets go bare.

Before you go, here is a quick article posted recently. 

The CEO at Wal-Mart says expect prices to go up dramatically come mid-year.

Perhaps all those World Net Daily news alerts weren't so far fetched after all???

But hey, if anything scary were to happen, at least Boozer would be happily inebriated would be VERY unprepared...


Monday, March 28, 2011

What Brings You Back

Nothing brings you instantly back to your childhood faster than a heaping pile of strawberry Jell-o With whipped cream.

Its a rite of passage and should be given out in those diaper bags that the nurses hand to all those new moms with new babies. It should be written on page 2  of "What To Expect When Your Expecting." EXPECT to make LOTS of Jell-o. Preferably Strawberry Flavor with a dollop of freshly made whipped cream. Mmmmm.

So tonight, after a delicious dinner of baked chicken, everyone got a bowl full of sweet goodness. 

Even Me.

I happily ate my share with a piping hot cup of evening coffee and had Molly read to me from her reading book.

It was good.

Our Little Red House is just starting to re-coup from cabin fever... again! Since Friday the heavens opened up and rain has been pouring on our Little Red House. Gloomy days have taken their toll on us and perhaps we got a bit too excited when the sun started to peak out from behind the clouds.

Tomorrow the southern weather is returning. YAAAA

We plan on venturing out. 

But while we were trapped up for days we kept busy with lots of things. School continues on until Spring Break. Im working on memorizing my lines for our Church Easter Performance and whenever I get a moments peace Im studying and test-taking all my Travel Agent information. I LOVE it and look forward to more bookings.

My kids have also become "experts" as well since they insist on breathing down my neck  watch me while I study and view these classes online.

Such is life.

Im going to leave you with my most precious picture of the night.:

My Little Miss P. who has (almost) officially become a thumb sucker. Its happening more and more and tonight, for the first time, as she was crying and I was crawling around in the dark looking for her paci... she soothed herself back to sleep with her tiny thumb in her little mouth. I could have just eaten her up right there.

Now don't be hatin and fill my comment section on all unsolicited usless  advice that I could care less about. After all, Im not dumb.

I know, as a Mom of 6 children. S-I-X.... that they will eventually get off my hip, they will eventually sleep in their own bed and they won't go off to college sucking their thumb.

So until then, I will lean over my sweet baby's crib and stare at her in the dark and smile.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Transparency On A Whole New Level

I think I am about to take being transparent to a whole new world with this!! I know my sis is gonna call and wonder WHY THE HECK I PUBLISHED these pics. But I had to. I had to tell y'all about my most newest, exciting adventure... 

I now own my OWN business.
Little 'ol me is now a TRAVEL AGENT.
I am super excited and already have 2 clients who I am booking right now.
An amazing agency has taken me under their wing and has trained me to make vacation dreams come true. Can you believe this??
What an amazing blessing.
Im humbled and still in awe of the opportunity I have been given and I promised myself I would not take it for granted or let it go to waste.
Now.. I now what your thinking..
What does this have to do with the below pictures??

Welcome to my um mess. I mean Office. Yeah Office. I have been inundated with travel magazines, brochures, documents, important phone numbers, notes on clients etc and I NEED to totally re-organize everything to make me stop freaking (from the mess)

My "desk."

And yet more of the chaos.

I know what your thinking..

"There is NO way Im booking my vacation thru her. She will lose all my stuff!!!"

No No No.

I promise I won't. I plan on making a consolidated list for staples and get some basic office supplies, a filing system and a calendar. That will just about make this area efficient and equipped. I also need a small bookshelf to hold the two MILLION travel brochures I have coming in the mail this week. 

Ok, maybe not that many. But I do have a few..

I also promise to not make this a travel/pressure buy blog. It will remain the same as it always was. Life as GiGi...

But I will be adding a vacation deals tab up top so you can check up on the latest vacation promotions and if you see something that interests you, then just contact me. I will just let you know at the end of my blog post if I updated.

See, easy peasy.

So, thats what I have been up to...

What about you???

Friday, March 25, 2011

Lowes Knows

Last week my sweet Huba Huba came home with some beautiful ferns for our front porch. Every year we buy them and enjoy them swaying in the breeze as we watch our kids run the streets play outside. But after a few days I started to notice this:

UCKY DEAD FERNS. I was so heartbroken. They were looking worse and worse every morning. I watered them and still... NOTHING! So I took them back to Lowes yesterday and they replaced them for
Now my Little Red House looks like this:

I can't wait to get more flowers to decorate with.

Gotta Love Lowes!

Thursday, March 24, 2011


Thats what I have been.. a new post is coming.. I PROMISE

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Im not surprised by this title... really. Random is the perfect word to use right now. Like the random ten million thoughts running thru my brain.The van we need to search for/buy. Perhaps its the super duper strong coffee I had after dinner or the fact that I just cried my brains out from reading a random blog I stumbled on. Or my belly ache. ( No Im not pregnant SHUT UP!!!!) Who knows. All I know is I can't even collect my thoughts to write a list. So I did the next best thing. Ramble BLOG! Yeah, who the heck thinks I will actually write something halfway comprehensible right now... Ummmm  apparently ME!

Whew, that felt good. Perhaps now that I vented I can share some thoughts. Random thoughts (there's that word again.) As I said earlier my mind is a-racin. So here I sit in the dark at 10 p.m. Well, maybe I shouldn't be so dramatic. Let me explain. Im in the dark because Miss Penelope is fast asleep and I would not dare do anything to wake her up.( Like turn on a light) Oh, she is a sweet thing and all but she has the runny nose blues which = cranky baby! But don't feel bad for me. I swiped my hubbys laptop and my iphone is getting plenty  of attention right next to me. Did I mention my new high score in Skee Ball?? I beat it... and my hubs... (we are in a massive, massive skee ball competition.) I just beat his score last night and want to revel in my glory. I got to because it won't be long before he creams me again. Gotta enjoy it while it lasts Ya know??

I have so  much on my mind and so much coming up. We need to buy a van soon. And not just any van... a 12 passenger van. A  large family van. A church-like van. HA! I actually can't wait. We need the extra room but the stress factor comes in when we shop for one. Luckily we won't be purchasing until a month from now so I have 30 whole days to pray without ceasing that God provides THEE perfect van for our family. And I know He will!! But seeing as Im incredibly thick-headed and incapable of learning, I will worry.worry.worry. We also have to refinance our home to get a better interest rate...That will reduce our payment THUS making us be able to afford our new van payment. All while entertaining house guests from next week till Easter.... getting Miss. P dedicated and throwing an awesome southern cookout bash. Finish schooling the kids and ending our craziness by packing up our big black van and heading to the beach for a MUCH needed vaca.

Phew... Im out of breath just thinking about this. But I know once my brain settles on my pillow and I realize no matter how much I sort thru everything in my head, only God can make it all happen... I will hopefully, finally fall peacefully in a deep sleep. Until then, my thoughts will remain a crazy, jumbled, random mess.***Darn that word!*

Sunday, March 20, 2011

For Shame..

Attempting Bball

I was on such a roll for sooo long with blogging daily. I loved it but alas, I fell off the wagon this weekend. Sorry folks!! But this weekend I was buzzing around like a busy bee AND I managed to almost take pictures every day of my outfits for What I Wore Wednesday blog-hop. Remember I mentioned it was a challenge?? I also took pics of my Penelope cause she is so darn cute in her warm sundresses...

This weekend was fun. The weather was perfect. I met some neighborhood moms at our neighborhood playground which is always nice. Since I homeschool and live in the way back, I tend to not see many people who live in my sub, But thats ok. Once the weather gets warm and my kids are running amuck thru the streets, Im bound to see someone. Dinner was relaxed and once evening hit the hubs and I laced up our sneakers and hit the pavement. We walked for a bit and ran for a bit.... although more walking happened because I am sooo out of shape but im getting there... slowly. Very slowly.

Abby-girl smelling our Yoshino flower from our tree.

Im trying really hard to remember what we did on Saturday... But I think it was just a bunch of hanging out. I do know the kids all got together with other kids (anyone they could collect) and had a massive game of red light green light. Then the darkness rolled in and we got a massive hail/thunderstorm but that blew over and we were back outside playing B-Ball with the kids and every so often other kids would run thru our yard or thru our gate playing hide and go seek.

everyone is playing around with the flashlight app on their phone... cause we are cool like that. Ha!

That evening was our WING NIGHT!! Whoo hoo... but we mixed it up a bit and invited my Aunt and Uncle over. We put on the party lights in our screen porch and indulged in perfectly crisp wings and deluxe nachos. We chatted and laughed and ate as the lightening flickered in the background. The evening was good! The weather was perfect! And the frogs were loud!

We made it to church this morning barely almost on time... Late, but earlier than we usually storm in. I missed it, It seems like for one reason or another we have not been there that much and I always miss my church family, so it was nice to see everyone's face again and chat away... It was an ol school service to say the least... a guest speaker evangelist that had all the gracefully aged members jumping up and down yelling Amen while the teens snickered at the hootin and hollerin goin on. It felt like a scene from Fried Green Tomatoes and I enjoyed it to the fullest...

Now its Sunday evening... the kids are all up in bed for the night sleeping and reading. Hubby is on his laptop and I am surrounded by perfect silence. My printer is working overtime in preparation for tomorrows SPRING arts and crafts lessons... an easy way to glide into the week ahead.

If you can do me a favor, please say a prayer for a facebook friend for me... Have I mentioned I LOVE FACEBOOK and when used responsibly and not stupidly its an amazing resource...
Anyway, we knew each other growing up and lost contact eons ago but are friend on FB..
She had a beautiful little baby boy yesterday morning who has serious serious heart problems. He had his first surgery yesterday and will undergo open heart surgery tomorrow...

For all you mamma's who read this blog... and I know there are alot...

Can you imagine your tiny 6 lb precious new baby undergoing life-saving, potentially deadly surgery??? This baby needs prayer. This Mama needs prayer. Please remember them tonight and tomorrow. Thank God for facebook, because of it we can gather more prayers together...

Thanks all so much my frineds and I can't wait to read all about your weekend fun!!



Friday, March 18, 2011

You know...

I did SOOOO much of this today :

That I have No time for this:


Its a hot gorgeous day over here. The hubs is just about home, the grill will be used and tonight...

as the night sky approaches...

the fire pit will be lit up.

we will welcome in the weekend 

and laugh under the moon.

have an AWESOME friday my friends.



Thursday, March 17, 2011

Its Amazing What You Find Under Your Bed.

 Monday morning our coveted bed came. Remember the one I told you about (like 1000 times?) Well ITS HEEERRREEE!! We were so excited. I got a few texts from the hubs saying that under the bed had to be cleared out before he got home because he expected to start assembling as soon as he came home. So I did the next best thing and waited till I had about 20 minutes left and then scrambled around like an absolute loon. You know what Im talking about right? Considering I have not cleaned under there since {clear throat} the day we moved in.... I could only imagine the dust giants bunnies just hangin around.
I delegated, pointed and called in all 5 of the troops to help me with this. Number 6 was safe in her bouncy seat strapped in tight. I was afraid she would get clearly lost in the junk we pulled out from under said bed. ( Oh and please don't comment me all freaked out that I labeled the baby by number .. Its late, I hot glue gunned my 2 fingers together and I am absolutely in no mood. k?)

Anywhoo... Lots of garbage was created that day and my new vacuum got quite a workout. Pretty soon we were down to bare bones. Junk pile in one corner, sort thru pile in another and hubs began taking apart our bedframe. I walked around picking up some scraps and such that remained under where the bed was and came across a green paper. I threw it on the garbage pile and it flopped over to reveal .....


My heart skipped a beat as I began reading the words on the paper and I must have said something.... Im not quite sure what it was. Honest I don't, but I know it was something out loud because hubby kept asking me...
It was a piece of my Thanksgiving Tree from 2009( can't find a link and 
Im losing steam. remember the hot glue gun thing?). But thats not the breathtaking part. It happened to be the one "leaf" given to me by my sweet childhood friend who PASSED AWAY last December. 
I stood there and stared at her writing, imagining her fingers coloring the paw prints... I read all that she wrote and wished I could turn back time to when the ink was still damp on the paper.
I knew this was not garbage. It now is laid to rest in my bible...
A place where special treasures are kept in the cover pockets. When I have my quiet time and read my bible, I often sort thru those precious papers. Prayer requests are written in there, a letter about my late grandmother, a picture of Molly and I meeting for the very first time is kept in there as well as a few small drawings from my kids that say I love you.
This too will be added and saved.
I was so thankful to be able to keep " a piece" of Erin with me...
Miss P. beckoned and I went off to smother her with kisses (cause she smells so good) and then I started making dinner. Some time later, Hubby came behind me and grabbed my hand and pulled me into my bedroom to take a look-see...

There she was... looking more beautiful than I could ever ever imagine. Real bedroom furniture that was all MINE!!!
We oohed and ahhed and couldn't believe, after almost 15 of marriage, we finally had something even our wildest dreams couldn't imagine...
Isn't she a beauty? The bed feels completely new to me now. I actually had a tough couple of nights sleeping in her. She wasn't uncomfortable... just different.
My sister says its because im getting old...

But isn't she a BEAUTY!!!!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

WHAT was I THINKING!!!???!!!

Sometimes its so easy to get caught up in this crazy culture. Where everything is bigger and better and better than what you have. Know what I mean?

When life around you might be grander, might seem grander, sometimes the tides tend to sweep you right along. Before you know it your drowning in a world where up is down, debt is good and depth is non-existent.
Ok, let me back up for a minute...
a few days ago, I found myself actually talking to hubby about selling our beloved little red house. Shocking right? I mean, I've said many times I would die within these walls. (mainly because the thought of moving and the work that entails gives me heart attacks...) but you get the point.
Prices are down, interest rates are better than when we signed 3+ years ago which means... bigger home for the same amount of money. This isn't a new idea. Hubby has wanted to high tail it outta here since the new builders took over. I have dug in my heels and refused to even discuss the topic. I mean, this is our dream. OUR prayers answered. It is OUR home....until a few days ago.
The moving bug hit me hard and I found myself convincing hubby that now is the time. SO many homes, so much more space... so much more NEEDED space for our growing family to spread their wings... and for all our unnecessary junk treasures.
I had already found a few in a neighborhood we liked. Almost 1000 more sq. ft, MUCH bigger yard, established trees. I mean, who stays in their starter home forever right?? We need more room ??!!
Hubby didn't say much as I rattled off ten logical reasons why the "For Sale" sign should be immediately thrown on our lawn.
Later that day, after I had a chance to walk away from Realtor.Com for a bit and cleared my head, I felt myself asking me these questions...

"What happened to the home you never ever were going to leave no matter what happened??"

""what are the real reasons you want to move?"
"What about this house makes you so unhappy that you feel you need out right away??"

And you want to know something??

I could not answer them.
What did change so quickly?
Was I so caught up in the bigger and better that I wasn't thinking about the necessary?? If prices were different, would I even be discussing this?
Was I so busy thinking about what we could possibly get, I wasn't focused on if we should.
Does that make sense??
Was this GOD??
Was HE giving me a sense of stirring??
I was so confused.
Why?? I was (and still am) totally and utterly madly in love with my small corner of the world. Would I ever be able to see it go? And would I move into our bigger place and realize I made a mistake???

Last night, I looked around at the beautiful blessing God provided us almost 4 years ago. I looked at all the wonderful things we added... all of which would not be at our "new" home.
Our new top of the line ceiling fans, our personal paint colors in almost every room. Our beloved screen porch, our amazing kitchen cabinets... the list goes on. 
A trade needs to be made. I can't have it all...

I settled in our new bed that just arrived. (im super stoked about it, I'll blog about that later...but in the meantime read about the almost 15 years it took to get it HERE!)
and began to pray. I asked for forgiveness for being so greedy. I should be thankful I have a home unlike so many in Japan that now have n-o-t-h-i-n-g.
I also prayed for Gods will. If HE is tugging at our heart to move on then by all means, We will. But right now Im not sure. I prayed that God will also speak to Hubby about the decision. As fear and emotion lead my heart more that I ever like to admit.
I also prayed that God would make it super duper clear. Writing in the sky would be nice, or a prophetic word. We tend to be a bit dense sometimes and want to hear it very very clearly.
If He says its a go, then I know he will prepare us for the very emotional move. If not then I will be happy to stay put in My Little Red House he blessed us with...
You know I don't like change and a part of me WANTS Him to stay say put... after all, its easier and this is our HOME!
I also prayed a prayer of THANKFULNESS. I was so Thankful that all we have to do is tune in to God and HE will make all the hard choices.  With all the confusion in our heads, making a logical, practical and benefitial life-changing decision is just TOO MUCH! Thank the Lord he will do all the work and we will just follow. Isn't that wonderful. (phew)
Anyway, I hope this makes sense to someone...
sometimes my thoughts seem so clear in my head and when I get them on paper they are a jumbled mess.... which makes me wonder how clear they were to begin with. Ha!
Its a reflective kind of day. The clouds rolled in and our windows are covered with rain. I will make broccoli soup for dinner and take this slow day to pray. Pray for Gods will in our life, in ever way!


Monday, March 14, 2011

THAT Day Again!

You all know how I dislike MONDAYS remember?? Well today its that day again, but much to my surprise, Im not in agony or that upset over it! HALLELUJAH!!! Our weekend was great!! One of those weekends that you wanted to freeze time and never have it end.
Have you ever had weekends like that??
Well Thats exactly how it felt for me. So since its Monday and im still running s-l-o-w from our relaxing weekend, I will give you a quick run.
Saturday hubby woke up early and the assembly began of some of the furniture for the big girls. They used to have the BIG bonus room as their room back when we were a family of 7 but with the addition of Miss. P., some adjustments were needed. So they are in the smaller bedroom and the 2 little girls moved into the bigger bedroom. Much to my surprise, they were really happy about all of this and welcomed the cozier room. With the room came a promise of painted walls, new decor and new furniture...
Finally, its starting to happen!
The smaller girls (plus Penelope, once she sleeps thru the night) will all share the BIG bonus room. This works out great because it holds all of their toys, play kitchen, tents and anything else they have. Its no longer all over the house!!!
Noah has sleepovers in there almost every night even though he has his very own boy-cave.

That took up most of the day. Then once Hubby was done assembling, I came in to clean and re-organize and distribute... (which Im still doing) they got a new bookshelf and dresser so we are weeding out alot of non- essentials. So we were sooo happy to pack up our big black beast van and head just 1/2 mile down the road to M.'s house.
Our first ever on the road wing night!
You all know how I feel about wing night, so I was happy to take the night to her humungo  home. The couz was meeting us there as well.

We had such a great night laughing and chatting and stuffing our faces  eating those delicious crunchy wings.

All of our kids get along sooo well. You would never think 9 kids were there. They played and laughed and ran around and had fun...

But I think we had much more fun than them. Come 1 a.m., as we were still sitting around her table laughing, the texts started coming from my dear daughters..

"Moooooom... can we go now??"
And by daughters, I mean Hannah. She turns into a pumpkin if she is not in her pj's and in bed by 8. Really... You don't want to know her when she doesn't get exactly 10.5 hours sleep.
Emma was already fast asleep in the living room.
Abby and Angel-baby fell asleep in the family room
M's son put himself to bed somewhere between 11-12 midnight
and of course Molly, G, and Noah were still up and at'em.

By 2 a.m.  M's hubby started to fall asleep at the table... we all decided to go home...

We gathered up the kids and drove away.
What a fun evening... I was POOPED! and finally crawled into bed somewhere a little past 3...

I think by that time everyone decided church would not be happening, especially since we lost a dear, precious hour of sleep.
But we couldn't ask for a better day to re-coup from our day...
Around 11 a.m, the kids strolled down the stairs and hubs and I finally decided to venture out from under our covers. Penelope was SO kind to us and let us sleep (as long as I kept feeding her bottles..)
The sun streamed in and windows were thrown open.
We spent most of the day outdoors at our playground, soaking in the sun and actually sweating!! Gotta love the Carolina sun.
Dinner was served in our screen porch. The first meal of the new year outside. How awesome it was. Hubby and I sat back and digested as the kids wandered away from the table and scattered about playing.

Thats one of my favorite parts about the nice southern weather... NO mosquitoes and many meals outdoors. When we built our home, this porch was one of our favorite "extras" we paid for... What a blessing it has been...

We can't wait for many more meals around this table, outside. Smelling the summer air and hearing the sounds of the world.

Now do you understand why I didn't want it to end?? It was a good weekend.
How was yours???

Sunday, March 13, 2011


I can't believe its 1:50 am and I am still functioning... or is it technically 2:50 am? Im not quite sure. We just got home. Tonight Today is daylight savings time and I never can get it right. All I know is this time change will mess me up for the next week. I guess I didn't pick the best night to stay out all night with friends... but when the mood hits, you gotta strike while the iron is HOT!

Hubs and I packed up our black van and headed to Michelle and Johns house for our first EVER traveling wing night. And what a night it was. We managed to laugh till we cried and discussed every topic under the sun...

But its late and I will tell you all about it in the morning k?

Happy Sunday!!!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

One Night

Isn't it amazing how things can change in just one night? 
One night.
24 hours. 
Last night we had our plans for our Friday. We knew what we had to do. What we planned.
But before we knew what hit us, our plans changed.
No wedding and No Friday night out.
A large family never knows when sickness will hit and tonight was one of those nights. Penny was feeling so bad, Abigail fell asleep sitting up at her dinner plate and hubby came home from work way beyond schedule. I quickly heard the flush of our plans swish away.
I was sad. I wanted so badly to attend this wedding,  but it wasn't so.
In retrospect, its not the end of all ends. Disappointing YES! Life shattering??? NO.

Not compared to the breaking news that was sent on my iphone this morning.
YES! I have FOX news alerts sent straight to my iphone to keep me updated on the events of the world. As I heard the bustling of hubs getting ready for work this morning, I rubbed my eyes and my arms went straight for my phone.
Wait? Don't you do that??
Well, believe it or not I get texts at all hours of the night from family members. You know who you are... the young ones playing Black Ops all night. Ring a bell??
Anyway, I didn't have my glasses on and since my eyes are old sleepy, I was a bit confused when it said that Japan had a major earthquake. I could have sworn it said 7.9 but again... my eyes.
I quickly figured someone was gonna get fired over at FOX for sending an old breaking news alert. Japan got that earthquake a few days ago. DUH!
But I scrolled over and hit the FOX app just to  double check.
My heart sank. No.No.No. It couldn't be. ANOTHER ONE?? And worse than the last.
Still in bed, (and toasty warm under my duvet) I turned on the t.v and watched as the horrific details began to unfold. It took a few minutes before it started making sense. I called hubby out of our bathroom so he could see too. I couldn't believe what we saw.

The turn of events pretty much consisted of the children gathering on our bed. One by one as they woke up and came down the stairs. They too watched the news and I explained (age appropriately of course) what was happening halfway around the world.
We started school late today but started it none the less. At some point I had to turn the tv off. I felt so bad even watching it. But my thoughts and prayers never waivered far from those people in need.

FOX news pretty much has been on since the afternoon. More pictures are coming in, the death toll keeps rising and loved ones are missing. Towns, cities, farms.... completely wiped off the face of the earth....

In one night.
24 hours.

the news today was a abrupt reminder to live righteously and respectively in the moment. M.o.m.e.n.t. Because right now, this exact second is really all we have. We don't know what tomorrow holds. We don't know if the fun weekend plans we have written on our calendars will ever be fulfilled. All we have is now.
God reminded me of a bible verse:


Friday, March 11, 2011

The Blue Room....


I have been married for almost 15 years and we have lived in 7 different homes. The longest one was in NY. 8 years. Actually, it was 7 years and 8 months to be exact! It also was the smallest home and the one I dis-liked the most. But to be truthfully honest. Its the house where I grew the most as a woman/mom/christian/wife and shared many happy memories despite the problems that came with that little box!

Anyway, thru all of our moves within state and out of state there has been 1 teeny-tiny thing lacking.
I mean, we have come a loong way since the hotel we lived in for a week right after we got married. The contents of our life was shoved in a small room in SC while we looked for a place to live right outside base. We thought we had it all till we realized we didn't have a bed to sleep on, couches to sit on, tables to eat on... but hey, we had pretty hand towels so we lived on L-U-V.

After a few months we decided love tasted much better on some kitchen tables and mattresses so we bought a few staple pieces to make our life feel better. One of them being our bed. (headboard/footboard)
Now fast-forward almost 15 years, 7 different houses, 2 states, 2 storage units and 6 kids and you will walk into my bedroom and still find the same exact headboard on my bed...
The last remaining piece of our "newlywed-ness..."
Our couches have changed, our decor completely changed and we have been thru several kitchen tables but for some reason our bedroom gets overlooked... No end tables, no dressers, no nada... EVER.

Until yesterday...

My hubs found a way to incorporate (almost) a whole bedroom set out of our tax refund. This is big people. Do y'all know how long I wanted end tables?? Sweet little end tables to put my books and bibles and empty bottles and dirty diapers on?? Oh you have no clue how I have dreamt and prayed and wished and thought about real bedroom furniture...

And NOW I don't have to. Some of the pieces started to arrive yesterday!!!
Of course, it couldn't be easy and hubs had to totally re-arrange our bedroom, move Miss P.'s crib around and temporarily store our back-up computer. But it was sooo worth it...

what a guy!

Before the legs are put on...

Now if only I can get my room in some kind of order. Shamefully, my bedroom is just in shambles. I don't mean it to be. My heart of hearts wants a perfectly ordered nest but with all the daily demands on my plate, my room kinda gets left in the dust. Im working on it though. I am barely keeping up with the housework, schooling, mothering,internet wasting  stuff as it is...
But its on my to-fix list. I could technically be in there now but the baby is sleeping so soundly and I much rather prefer relaxing on my couch in my silence, typing away. Today I got absolutely nothing done.Nada.Zero.Zip.Zilch.
And by nothing I mean the normal daily activities that make up my day (listed above.) I welcomed the change though and didn't mind the mixing up of my routine. Instead of schooling all day, we ended up shuffling around town picking up the furniture that we had ordered for the older girls room (Thank you taxes and site to store.) and picking up the paint to quickly finish painting their room before the furniture was put into place. Somewhere in between all of that, my van might or might not have stumbled into the Target parking lot for some unnecessary shopping. ( Just ask THE CHATTY MOMMY, I was on the phone with her when it happened.)
By the time we arrived back home and everyone was settled, order was restored and paint was thrown on the walls... dinner had to be quickly served. My cousin came over to help with the furniture moving/removing in exchange for a hot meal and good conversation. I love when he comes over. Our chatter quickly turned into a book review for "The Case For Faith and The Case For Christ..." More books on my to-do list. They sound fascinating and will most likely lead us into many late night theology debates. My Uncle also ended up showing up briefly ( the double bed was being moved to his house down the road.) and before I knew it more chaos and now quiet.
Except for the occasional Miss. P. cries. She is having a rough night and just won't settle in, I on the other hand want to settle in RIGHT NOW. Im beat. I have a headache that won't quit. But I don't want MY night to end. My glorious night of silence, writing, catch-up cleaning, t.v. watching, bible reading and anything else I can squeeze in night.
But if any night is a good night for rest, tonight is. Tomorrow is another busy day and will end with the celebration of a precious couple from our church getting married. I am looking forward to seeing them exchange vows and start their life together.
So Im off. GiGi signing out. Time to finish my last clean of the night and squeeze 10 million other things into my free time. and then my exhausted body will crawl into bed and I will enjoy...

 the new beauty of my REAL BEDROOM FURNITURE!

Thursday, March 10, 2011


I knew I had a busy day ahead of me. Gym class in the morning for 2 of my kids and another one had to be dropped off at a science field trip. I had 1 hour to kill in between both followed up by a bridal shower for the cutest couple getting married this Friday at my church and then topped off with my Revelation bible study. So, tuesday night as hubby and I sat in bed and watched the late night news, I didn't know what to do. The weather forecasted for wednesday was treacherous! 3 to 5 inches of rain falling in less than 12 hours... Um, that's ALOT! Flash flood warnings and river warnings were already in effect. All I could think about was hauling 6 kids in and out of the downpours all day long. Wet pants, cold shivers and soggy shoes make me cringe. I knew I had to pray. Only God could help me out of this one. I usually stay home in bad weather. Even the kids know that. But I just had to go to this shower Wednesday night.

I canceled the field trip and gym class much to my kids sadness. I prayed thru the day that this massive rain would cease! By noon (when I would have been out picking up kids) The water began to fall. I was happy to be indoors. We watched as on and off showers pounded on our windows.

The kids kept checking to see if it would lighten up. Nothing makes my heart swell with happiness than seeing my kids just begging to go to church. Too sweet for words.

I pretty much gave up for a few hours but then the rain lightened up to a slow steady. I figured, if it stayed this way then we could possibly pack up our van and head down. The streets would not be too flooded... hopefully!! I prepared as if we were going. Dinner in the oven by 3:45, hair done, socks and shoes put on and jammies laid out for when we returned home. Bags packed, diapers changed... and table set for dinner. We were ON schedule. Once we sat down to eat our meal (which I allotted 15 minutes for) Molly began to say Grace. I had asked her to also pray for God to hold back the rain for us so we could gather in His house for the shower and bible study.

The rain still stayed steady. Not too bad. We rushed and loaded up the van and pulled out of our driveway exactly 1 minute behind schedule. (for anyone that knows me, that in itself is a MIRACLE!!) We only got lightly rained on. Enough for it to not even phase me or get my perfectly wrapped Leopard bridal gift ruined. ( Isn't it so pretty!)

Chatter, music, songs, loud weird noises all emerged for our 20 minute carride. As we stopped at the top of the hill right before our church, I noticed something... I yelled out in delight...


We were so busily happy driving to church that we almost missed our coveted answer to prayer. We all cheered and were so happy. We also got a FRONT parking space... which is another miracle as our parking lot is very hilly and always full.

We were able to attend the lovely shower and see the precious couple open all their gifts. Now, our church has 2... TWO buildings which requires me to walk outside and drop some off here and some off there... which was another reason I stay home on rainy days.

But when I walked outside to drop off AND 2 hours later when I went to walk outside to pick up, the night was beautiful and not one drop of rain fell on my skin. As I walked thru the night I quietly Thanked God for His amazing attention to detail. MY INSIGNIFICANT detail. When so much hurt and evil and heartache is rising up before Him, He STILL answers my little meaningless prayer. Tonight, He was sooo faithful to me. As always. He taught my children of His faithfulness. He taught me more about faithfulness and a beautiful young couple was blessed by so many gifts because the weather let up and people came!... He works ALL things out for good.

Tuesday night the rain bands headed our way from the gulf were practically historic. Rain starting from the wee hours of Tuesday night till Thursday morning were expected.  Thunder, possible tornadoes and up to 5 inches of rain in some areas... But God saw fit that we make it to church...

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."
Romans 8:28

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

What We Love...

*** I double posted today so scroll down after reading this one. =)***

This casserole is our ALL TIME FAVORITE in our house. When I tell everyone we are having the "muenster cheese, chicken dish" Hubby gets really happy.

Its hearty and warm and served with warm biscuits.

After eating this meal, you know your belly is full, the kids are well fed and everyone is happy.

You can't tell by the picture but this dish just came out of the oven and was still bubbling....

Try It!!!

1 onion chopped
2 tbs butter
1/4 cup flour
1 1/2 cup chicken broth
3/4 cup milk
salt and pepper
egg noodles or any other type pasta
5 cups shredded cooked chicken
1 package broccoli florets
Lots of sliced muenster cheese.

Preheat oven to 400. Saute onion in butter over medium heat for 3 minutes. Mix in flour. Gradually stir in broth, combining well.
Then gradually add milk. Cook, stirring continually, until thickened. Stir in salt and pepper to taste.
Boil the pasta and drain well. Spread noodles in casserole dish/ Place chicken and broccoli over noodles. Pour sauce over everything. Sprinkle cheese on top and cook for 20 minutes or until cheese melts.

My Variations...

I double the recipe to feed my crew. I also use sliced cheese and layer the bottom AND top for more cheesy goodness. I don't follow the recipe to a t and it still comes out great. I season the meat before I cook it. and use a lot of salt and pepper. Im all about FLAVOR!!

Let me know how you like it!!!


I have been meaning to do WHAT I WORE WEDNESDAY for some time now and I always forget to take pictures of myself.

Well, truthfully, up until 2 weeks ago, I had NO FULL LENGTH MIRROR!!

For Shame, I know... but every one I saw was either too expensive OR was a fat mirror...

you know those types. Cheap fun house mirrors.

But Alas, Kirklands never ever fails me. I found the perfect one I wanted for just a few dollars. Isn't it purdy??

No more standing on the tub to see over the sink mirror.


Bible Study Day!

Red polk-a-dot shirtdress: Ross
Black T- Old Navy
Jeans: Marshall's
Bejeweled Bling sandals: Targ-ee
Double pearl Earrings: Old Navy
Red Flower Hair Clip: Forever 21

So, you know Im a BIG believer in keeping it real, so this was my lounge/no make-up/ I have 6 kids look:

Shirt and Comfy pants: Old Navy
Sunglasses: Old Navy
Slipper boots: Ummm Guess... Old Navy!

Girl's Night Out Whoo Hoo...

Ruffled Flower Tank: Old Navy
Brown Skirt: Old Navy
Brown Heel Boots: Mandee
3 Strand black bead necklace: Old Navy
Black Earrings: Target

My hair style is called... Right out of the shower/towel dried look. I had no time. I was Running really late as always!
Whew, I am so glad THAT is over... Its a lot of pressure folks, to make sure you remember to take pics and then remember where you bought everything??!! But Im so glad I did it. I can't wait to post again next week But thats it for me, I have SOOOO much to do today, I will be sure to fill you all in tomorrow and friday. Chat with ya then.




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