Monday, May 31, 2010

Yard Saling!!!

Friday and Saturday were the days we decided to have our annual Memorial Day yard sale.
"We" being me and my best friend. We had it at her house because she lives in a great location for a lot of business and she is super organized and gets up at 5 to start setting up. This allows for me to be there a little late!
We were a little nervous- this was our first Friday garage sale! Our husbands said it would never work, but we were confident it would- we had seen so many in the past in our area!

And Friday was a major success!

We made awesome money and had a steady flow all day.

I made $140 the first day and $65 the second! That is the most $ I have ever made at a yard sale!

My son, who loves to make money, sold iced tea for fifty cents a cup. He made about $8! I was amazed. People thought he was cute, gave him a dollar and said keep the change! What recession?

My girlfriend attempted to find homes for 3 cats that her neighbors abandoned. All of you who love animals, can do a collective "Awwwwww" right about now.
She has been feeding them, but can not keep them because her dog is not a cat lover. Some people were interested, but she could not get rid of them even with the offer of free food!

We sold a lot of stuff and it was good to get it out of the house and the basement.

Boy, am I tired!!!

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Coming up.... the giveaway loot I won!

Land of the Free Because of the Brave

We went to our local Memorial Day presentation today. We drove over to my mom's house and then walked up her block. We heard a lot of different people speak including the parents of a fallen local soldier who I wrote about a few days ago. It was amazing to hear them speak and to think it is 106 degrees where our soldiers are right now. We are blessed to have these men and women fighting for us as well as those who have come before.

It was a special sight to see the flag raised so high,

and to watch the people salute the flag, and to hear the guns go off. I would of totally been in the zone of praying and trying to understand what it is like for a soldiers' family, BUT my kids were crying and complaining about the walk, the sun and who should get to ride in the wagon!!!!!
What kind of kids am I raising here?
We spoke a lot about the soldiers and their Papa who was in Vietnam, but they need a wake-up call. First thing, I need to stop complaining about anything- it starts with me and the example I set for them. But I digress...

I just wanted to leave you with 2 blogs I regularly follow, that are active military famlies, so if you are so inclined to, leave them a nice message today on Memorial Day!

Hope you had a great day!

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Coming up..... Pictures of the garage sale- how much did I really make?

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Getting to Know YOU- Blog Carnival

1. Have you ever snooped around someone else's house?
No, never intentionally went through someone's things, but anything that may be lying out is free reign.

2. Can guys and girls be friends?
No, I think this never works. Someone always has feelings for the other person even if they do not want to admit it or fully realize it.

3. Can you curl your tongue?
No, so not talented.

4. Have you ever stolen anything?
Not that I can think of unless food when mom said no when I was little counts. Ahhh, how early these issues start!

5. Would you rather talk on the phone or text?
Talk on the phone. I am terrible at texting and my cell plan does not include a texting package.
A comedian once said, "If texting had been created first, people would think it was so cool to be able to now talk on the phone and actually hear another person's voice". It truly feels like we go in reverse sometimes.

6. Memorial Day plans?
BBQ today after church and tomorrow will check out the local Memorial day parade.

7. What do you do to relax?
Watch TV, look for interesting blogs, read...

8. Do you do anything to honor those that have died fighting for our freedom?
Not formally. Yesterday, I was able to meet the parents of a fallen soldier from our town. I have read about him so much and it was special to actually see his parents. All I could say without crying was, "I am so sorry for your loss. God bless you and what an amazing sacrifice". That is only a small pitance of what they deserve. What amazing men and women- our soldiers, both past and present.

For more answers to these questions or to link up yourself, click here.

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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Saturday Sharing Blog Hop

Good Morning!!
I have shared my quest for finding a blog hop for everyday of the week this week and today was supposed to be no different. However, it seems the only blog hops I could find have to do with pets- which I do not have nor do I like. Sorry animal lovers.
So, I have decided to start my own blog hop.

I am always interested in what fellow bloggers are doing to make money from home or outside of the home, how they run their households and how they raise their children. Rather than contact everyone, I figured we could answer some simple questions and help each other out.
Copy and paste the five questions into your own blog and answer them. Then link back to my blog with the linky at the bottom. Check out everyone elses answers to get some new ideas.

1. How do you earn extra money for your family?
2. What is your favorite parenting tip?
3. Any great housecleaning tips?
4. How many kids is the perfect amount for you?
5. If you could take your family anywhere, where would it be?

My answers:

1. I find that babysitting makes me the most consistent money from home. I would love to make money off of the internet somehow, but this has not happened yet. Babysitting is great because you can do it from your own house and do it on your own schedule. It is sometimes hard to find kids, but I have been blessed by word of mouth. Babysitting sometimes stresses my when my kids are sick and I have to cancel those I am sitting for, but overall has been a good fit for me.

2. My favorite parenting tip is you can change anything at any time, but the longer you wait the harder it is. For example, changing a sleeping pattern in a baby might take you a week, but changing an attitude in a teen might take a lot longer. However, if you are committed to it, you can change anything. My son (preschool age) was constantly coming into our bed in the middle of the night. I kept waking up with an arm or leg in my face. So, when I finally decided to end it, I had to be committed. I got up with him every night and walked him back to his bed. We talked about it for days with him and discouraged him from doing it. Thankfully, his times in our bed are almost non-existent. This was a positive outcome for the sake of the blog hop- I do have stories that have not worked so well that I will save for a better day.

3. Great housecleaning tip- get a family member to help. I am counting on you guys for this one- I need a lot of help in this area.

4. I don't know what the perfect amount is, but I love having 4!!! I never thought we would have this many and it has been wonderful.

5. I would love to go to one of those Beaches resorts on any island for some sun and sand. Not going to happen for a long time, but a girl can dream, can't she?

Have a great Memorial Saturday!!

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Friday, May 28, 2010

Follower Friday

Smart and Trendy Moms
So, I have been trying some new blog hops for the week and it has been fun. I wanted to find something different today and I found the Smart and Trendy Moms.


I had to ask myself are you smart and trendy? (I got the mom thing already).

I guess I would consider myself smart, although I do tend to have "Mom Brain" sometimes...ya know, when you talk with a friend and then completely forget what you are talking about.

The problem lies within the trendy part today- Do mom jeans count? Yes, my younger and way cooler brother tells me my jeans are "mom jeans". I tell him they do not start out that way. I buy attractive dark denim with "boot cut". The problem occurs when I wash these jeans a lot and they wind up tight and with just a little bit of an arc at my ankles instead of the boot cut. They also seem to take on a not so "cool" denim color that seems to be common among moms. I try, believe me.

The other day I found myself in the library at a program with the kids wearing somewhat slim fitting capri sweats with a slightly oversized tee shirt that fits just in the middle of my backside. I though I would finish the outfit off with some trendy flip flops I had bought at Marshalls 2 years ago. It was working for me at home- but later at the library I caught a glimpse- not pretty!!!!

This was compounded with the fact that we got a super - energized teacher who thought it was fun to blast Gloria Estefan and do hitch kicks while the kids did their art projects. Think Mario Cantone from Steampipe Alley. He was so high energy, I could barely make eye contact. And to think I was feeling so guilty about not taking the boys to the library more. I could of listened to "Turn the Beat Around" at home!
But there was definitely some trendy moms with trendy kids with long hair and cool names like, Greyson.
Hey, my kids love me anyway, right?

So, I am not sure about all the rules of a Friday Follow, but if you follow me and leave a comment today, I will do the same for you.

Let's be honest, if you leave a comment any day on this post and follow me, I will follow you.
I am always checking old posts for comments.
I believe that is called a comment Troll in blogland.

Enjoy today, I am off to my yard sale- pray I make big money - at least enough to have a little extra after I have to buy pizza because there is no time or energy to make dinner tonight!

Happy Friday!

Click on the link above if you want to hop around to some other new blogs!!!
Make sure you are somewhat smart and trendy first, please.

Just kidding!

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Thursday, May 27, 2010

Thursday Five- Dig Deep Baby

Thought I would take a stab at the Thursday Five with Mannland again.
It has been a busy week, but there is always things we can be thankful and happy about, even if we have to dig deep, baby.

I am HAPPY that I have some new followers. I get so excited when I see more people have joined on.

I am JOYFUL because summer is right around the corner. This means beach, sun, ice cream and heat!! And no buying oil for the house!!!

I am EXCITED that the kids are almost off from school!!!! They only have 2 more weeks! We can't wait to have an easier schedule and play and no homework and no packed lunches and no school clothes and no backpacks and no bus and no tests and no book fairs and no money for field trips....
I can't wait and the kids are counting down the seconds.

I am JUBILANT because we are having a yard sale tomorrow and Saturday and the forecast looks good and I am hoping to sell a lot of clutter and make a lot of money!!!

I am GRATEFUL because my baby seems to be feeling better after high fever last night. Hoping it is just because it was so hot last night and the air conditioners are still not in yet. But also grateful that it is cooler today.

Want to see some more Thursday fives? Click on the button below:

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Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tempt My Tummy Tuesday -Beef and Cheese Bread

This is one of my favorite recipes passed down from my mother. She got if from an insert from the paper some time in the early 80s. It was one of the first recipes I made as a newlywed and my husband loved it. My mother even entrusted the original copy of her recipe to me and of course, I lost it. Thankfully, we have memorized it.
I made it so much when my husband and I took lamaze classes for our first born child. It was an easy thing for us to eat as we headed out the door. He actually told me to stop making it for awhile, because I had played it out.
You can eat it refridgerated or straight from the oven. I like to heat up slices, while my husband likes a huge hunk with some honey mustard. I have made multiple loaves for parties. It freezes well, but takes awhile to heat up if frozen first. It is a great recipe to double.
A lot of friends have asked for this recipe, but I am always too lazy to write it out and everyone thinks I just don't want to share.
Without further ado,
3/4 c. water
3 c. flour
1 T. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
1 package yeast
1 egg
6 T. butter
6 oz. swiss cheese
6 oz. pastrami

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
Take one cup flour and mix it with the package of yeast in a mixing bowl and set aside.
On the stove top, heat on low 2 T. milk cut into smaller pieces, the sugar and the salt.
Once butter is almost completely melted, combine with the flour/yeast mixture and add the egg.
Beat on medium for about 2 minutes.
Slowly add the remaining flour and start mixing by hand. Once all the ingredients are combined, knead by hand on a lightly floured surface until well combined and pliable.
Leave in a bowl and cover with cloth. I leave it right near the oven, so the heat hits it and the dough will rise. Leave it for at least 10 minutes, more if possible.

While the dough is rising, cut the pastrami and swiss into thin strips and set aside.
Melt remaining butter and set aside.
When dough is ready, take and put on lightly floured surface.
With rolling pin, roll it out into a big rectangle. About 15 by 10.

Divide into 3 equal strips lengthwise with a butter knife. On each strip put a coat of butter. I use a spoon to do this since I do not own a pastry brush, but a pastry brush would be great. Then sprinkle with oregano.

Next, place equal amounts of pastrami and swiss on each of the 3 strips. Then pinch edges together of each strip lengthwise.

Now, flip the pinched sides down onto a cookie sheet- might have to fit it diagonally. Pinch the 3 ends together and mold them together, then braid the 3 strips. Pinch and mold together at the other end. This part does not have to be perfect - it will still cook no matter what your braid looks like and this part gets easier in time.

Cover the bread with a cloth- I use a kitchen towel. Then let the bread sit out to rise for at least 30 minutes. On either of the rising steps, you can leave the oven door open to let some of the heat help with the rising.
After 30 minutes, bake the bread for about 25 minutes. It should be a golden brown. When it is done, brush on some melted butter and sprinkle with oregano! Enjoy.
You could also use ham or turkey. I have been asked to try pepperoni and mozzarella, but haven't yet.
Let me know if you have any questions.
And if you want to check out anymore Tempt My Tummy Tuesdays, check out our blog host by clicking on the button below.
Blessed with Grace

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Monday, May 24, 2010

Making Your Home Sing Monday: Managing Our Homes

Getting organized around here!
We had an out of town guest come in unexpectedly. This is a great thing for us, because it makes us clean!
He has never seen our house before and although it is a true fixer upper that has not been fixed up yet, we try to make it clean so not everyone has to look at all of our clutter.
This either leads to organization and cleaning the "correct" way or shoving things in empty grocery bags and shoving the bags in closets. That paints a nice picture, doesn't it?
This time we had a little of both.

This is my desk - it is in the process of being properly organized.
My daughter said after one of our marathon cleans she doesn't know whether to be happy her room is clean or to feel bad that now she has plastic bags with different things in them that need to be cleaned out.
What am I doing to this poor girl???
Now we have to clean every nook and cranny, and still switch out the winter clothes for the summer clothes.
One step at a time....
One drawer at a time....
One bag that has been shoved in the closet at a time....

Want to join the blog hop? Click on the button below...

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Sunday, May 23, 2010

Getting to Know You

These are the Getting To Know You Questions from Mannland5. To see the others who have linked up or to link up yourself click on her button above.

1. Do you have a fetish? Does food count? Otherwise no.

2. Do you sing in the shower? No, I make mental lists. What I have to do that day, what I am going to do first, do the kids need baths, what needs to be cleaned, what are we having for dinner, when will I work out, what events are coming up, who I am babysitting, what bills need to be paid, who needs to be called, what to blog about....

3. Who was your first crush? Fonzie from Happy Days. A girl can dream, right? Must of been the leather jacket.

4. What do you think is the best manly trait a guy could have? Being a great father. Playing with the kids. Always being available for family.

5. Had to omit #5- just couldn't bring myself to write the word on my blog- I am a huge prude and proud of it!!!

6. What do you do when (you think) no one is looking? Big time- nose pick!! Can't believe I just said that- I do wash my hands- lol I am going to hit publish post before I can delete that!

7. What's the first thing you do when you go online? I always check email, then my blog. I get real excited if I have mail or if someone commented on my blog. I get ecstatic if I have a follower!

8. Summer favorite time of year. We hit the beach, stay outside and finally get to enjoy Long Island especially after the winter we have had.

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Saturday, May 22, 2010

Anti-Facebook Part 2

I know many are not a fan of these posts against facebook, but I just had to add one more. I wrote this one in February.
Recently while out with friends, my husband's friend shared with us that he personally knew of 2 marriages that have broken up because of Facebook. I have also heard some people go on Facebook and decide their old ex-flame from high school might be a better match than their current spouse.
Then I read the following "Dear Amy" letter from our major newspaper on Long Island.
I wanted to share it with you. It is from the March 5, 2010 Newsday. It reads:

Dear Amy,
I have a nagging romantic fantasy that I can't get rid of. Twenty years ago I had a huge crush on a male friend in college. Just when I thought we might get together, he went away for the summer and met his future wife. I felt I had lost my first true love. We moved to different states and kept in touch for a few years (a couple of times a year). I have been happily married for almost 14 years. Over the years, I've wondered what might have happened with this other guy, but I let it go - until Facebook entered the picture. I got caught up reconnecting with friends from high school and college, and sure enough, he was in the mix (we have lots of mutual friends). I was so excited to look at his photos. Now I find myself having periodic dreams about him. In the dreams (as in real life), we are friends but are never romantic. I have worried that this isn't good for my marriage. I feel it's kind of like emotional adultery. I tried "hiding" from my friend on Facebook, but I see his comments on other friends' post anyway. If I drop him as a friend, I feel as if I would need to explain why, and he knows nothing of this. My husband doesn't know he exists. What should I do?

Ahh Confused- where should I begin?
1. Get off Facebook- not really working for you
2. Get someone to talk to other than Dear Amy- how about the Lord?
3. Get off Facebook!!!!

Dear Amy wrote some mumbo jumbo about her own crush on Donny Osmond (why does everyone about 50, love the Donster?) and then to make a choice to "grow up" and "unfriend" this person on Facebook and recommit herself to her husband.

I thought everything she said was pretty sound, but I honestly feel bad for "Confused" and just wanted to share this, so people take a little more time to think before actively "Facebooking".

Have a Great Weekend!

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Thursday, May 20, 2010

My new TEETH!!!

Woo Hoo!
This was my second time around with braces. It was a success! I could not be happier! I will now and forever wear my retainers, so I will not have to get braces again!
Now for a little whitening......

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Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Where Is Your Money Going?

I just read Traveling Light's blog. She speaks about money that we give to charities or even through purchases that is earmarked for funding abortions. She has recently received factual information that her favorite charity does this and in investigating she has found how many companies do as well.
I found it sad. But at the same time, what do we do?
Do we, as Christians, boycott these products, services and charities?
I am mixed on this and I do not like to be grey. I am either black or white on issues. But this is a hard decision because with this decision comes action and are we really prepared to take action?
Read her blog and let me know what you think.

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Saturday, May 15, 2010

I won another blog giveaway!!!!!!

I won a $25 gift certificate from Kingdom Twindom for the Gumdropz store on etsy!!!! I think I might get these beautiful sea glass soaps. Aren't they amazing?!? Or maybe some shea butter lotion. Or maybe a lip balm. I will show pics of the loot when it comes.
As for now, I am off to find more blog giveaways!!!
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Monday, May 10, 2010

Silly Bandz

Once Again- what was I thinking?
Is the silly bandz craze by you? It is not just in the schools, but in church, in missionettes and even the neighbors have them!!!!
They are animal shaped rubberbands that you wear as bracelets and trade with your friends. They are all the rage and now come in many different shapes. They even have rare ones- like a weiner dog.
Some smell pretty, some glow in the dark and some are tie dye. My kids are crazy for them!
And they are cheap enough so I bought some and they spent their money on some.
First problem- they have too many- just unneccessary.
2. They leave them all over the house.
3. Did I mention pointless?

I guess it is just another craze- like the pet rock or garbage pail kid cards or tickle me elmo.
I think I just liked making the kids happy.
I kind of have to re-think that when recently, my oldest asked for us to have another baby so she could be "popular" at school!!!
Now, they all ask for another sibling- but popular?
Too funny.

Starting some serious potty training tomorrow- pray for me.

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mother's Day!!!! Look what I got......

I have the best kids ever. I had a great mother's day!!!! How about you? My middles made me some of the best artwork ever and even helped out.... a little. And my oldest- well she just takes the cake.
Let me preface this for you.....
I love a certain online jewelry company and I stalk her website waiting for giveaways. If you are wondering who.. I'll never tell. Only kidding. It is!
She has the most beautiful pieces that can of course, be personalized with the kids' names. I have stopped myself on more than one occasion from buying something, just because I am ever striving towards being a better steward of my money (I know- yada yada- I might ask for something for my b-day)- but the other day (while stalking) I saw the most beautiful pearl earrings. They were dainty and pretty, maybe not exactly me, but beautiful. I thought maybe just maybe I would indulge (on that last word- I hear Beth Moore does a whole study on indulging). But I thought better of it and moved on.

So, imagine my surprise when my daughter presented me with the most beautiful, dainty, pearl earrings that she made herself!!!

Now, I do not know about your house, but I usually might have an inkling as to what the kids are planning. But I had no idea and she did not know about the vintage pearl or what I was thinking about.

The earrings are beautiful and she presented them in a heart shaped box and I hope I never lose them, so I never forget this day and I do lose things, so I will have to be careful.

This day was so great, I almost forgot that my youngest seems to be coming down with something and my favorite elder at church thought I might be prego- and I am so not.

Happy Mother's Day and let's be honest- Now we will just start planning Father's Day.

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Friday, May 7, 2010

The Best Oatmeal Raisin Cookies

I make the best oatmeal raisin cookies. It is not any credit due to me, it is a great recipe I found off google. It is here if you are interested.
Everyone likes them, but I think I played them out, making them too much!
So, what is a mom to do- I ate them. Not all of them, but I shouldn't of eaten any of them.
I think on this one, we will go with "Tommorrow is a new day!"
Cutting back is hard to do.

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