Tuesday, December 22, 2009

HP TouchSmart 600 Computer Giveaway..

You just have to check out the site!  It is truly a fantastic computer!

I think this would be an incredible addition to our home.. especially homeschooling Anna.. we do alot online and this would just make things so much easier, not to mention fun! 

Here's a little video about the computer

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Crazy two days

It's been a crazy 2 days.  Yesterday, I woke up at 3am and laid in bed for about 30 min before deciding  there was just no point in staying there.  So I got up, and did the usual chores.  I saw instructions for a driedel game after reading someone's blog.. It looks easy and fun.. sounds good to me.. so I printed it out and we tried it out.  Angel is really interested in playing the game with the girls when they come.

After everything was done, everyone was still asleep.. so I watched The Biggest Loser Finale online.  Oh my word.. just amazing and inspiring.. what they have done.  I am fascinated with Shay right now.. She has come a long way and still has a long way to go.

The rest of the day was a mixture of decluttering magazines, boxing up resource materials so we can actually use the fireplace.  Seriously, I made a huge mess before it even looked better.. actually, it never did look better yesterday.. just progressively worse.

And the worse part was that I had hurt my back somehow.. so I was in a bit of pain.  Last night I enjoyed watching a show with Angel while using a heating pad on my back. 

A funny - During my de-cluttering and sitting when the back hurt too much.. Ethan came over and climbed on my lap.. He gave me this look and said..

E - Meemaw, don't be sad, be happy!
M- Meemaw is frustrated
E - Why?
M- Because of all the clutter
E - (kicks the air), I kicked that clutter for you
M-(laughing) are you my clutter kicker?
E - Yes!  (then looks puzzled for a few min)  what is clutter?
M - It is a pile of mess
E - (looks at me with those eyes of his).. well, clean it

at this point I am just laughing.  To him the solution was so easy.. if it is messy, then clean it.  I just love that boy!

I finally crawled into bed after midnight (was shocked I was still even awake at that point with very little sleep the night before).. and woke after 6 hours.. Then it was a rush to get all the trash out.  I had two boxes of magazines, newspapers and random papers to get to the road.  We also finally took out all the boxes that had accumulated on the deck.

Today I managed to bring two boxes of magazines to the basement. I recheck them during the holidays but wasn't actually able to find them becasue they were just thrown everywhere.. the boxes are now labeled and I can easily find them when I need to.  We also have not renewed to any magazines so I will not worry about accumulating more.. thank goodness.

I also sorted thru Anna's three school crates.. and brought down a bin of our pumpkin decorations and the christmas decor we are not using.  I put up the window lights.. and of course.. because I had to move some things to get to the window,.. and I made a huge mess decluttering.. I had to vac.. vac'ed all main rooms and bathroom, and then washed the floor.. wow.. I am just stunned.

I did also color with Anna today.  We didn't actually do any crafts together however, she decided she wanted to finish her book today so she read 3 days worth and we worked on the questions.  So she is done with school til January.  Tonight I want to go through some books and magazines and get some ideas with her.

Right now Ethan is looking at a book, Christmas cd is playing in the background, ground beef is browning on the stove, Anna is talking to Bri on the phone in her room.. and I just put 6 bags of Amish Friendship Starter into the freezer.   I am kind of sad that I can not make bread for others this year.. just don't have enough oil, milk, pudding,etc.. but at least it will not go to waste.

Excuse me a moment please...

Ethan just begged me to read this..  twice!
It is one of his favorite books here.. along with the Biscuit books.

 Ok.. now beef is cooked and simmering in sauce (well, half of it anyways) and water is started for the spaghetti.  Almost time to eat.. but I must say.. the place is looking pretty good.  Praying I have a productive day again tomorrow.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Finances & Christmas gifts

This year has definitely been interesting.  Especially since we have banned ourselves from using credit cards.  However, I am discovering these small little blessings.  For instance.. about a month ago.  We needed a new handle for our sliding door.  We had been going on for quite a while with a busted one.  We stopped at Lowe's and found one for 8 and change.  We started to walk out since we had no money to look for anything else.  There was this shelf with marked down items on it.. just a bunch of random stuff.. but.. there was one item that caught both of us as we walked quickly by.. causing us both to stop dead and stare.  Among the items was a sliding door handle for 75 cents.  Wow!  We checked the size and it matched up.. It was just as solid as the one we were purchasing.. the only difference was it was a light color wood.. well seriously.. we just had to snatch that up. 

At the register it was quite funny because the guy looked at us and said.. wow, big spender.. lol. 

So with this interesting time of year and no purchases allowed on credit cards.. I had a serious conversation with Anna.  We told her Christmas was going to have to be less gifts this year.  She said, "Mommy, that is ok, because I have my family!"  She asked specifically for 4 things. 

  1. pink guitar
  2. sewing machine
  3. metal slinky
  4. yo-yo
The first is a gift she is requesting from santa.  (Angel decided a long time ago that we were doing the Santa thing.. I decided it wasn't worth fighting over)

We had a little bit of money after the bills.. we managed to get the first gift (although it is purple), as well as spent 50 cents for the slinky at the christmas tree shop and 3.00 for the yo-yo at walmart.  All that is left was the sewing machine..

That sewing machine caused alot of problems.. First I knew that A.C. Moore had them for about 20.00.. I had a 40% off coupon.. so I headed off to A.C. Moore..   No sewing machines.. only the 60.00 Alex one that comes with projects.. problem.. I am not spending 60.00 on a kids sewing machine.. yes I know I had a coupon.. but seriously, no way! 

So I came home and looked on Amazon.  They had the machines.. and they were 20.00.. however, one look at the reviews and my heart sank.. they had horrible reviews!  So I take a look at the Alex reviews.. wow.. much more promising.. but 60.00! 

a week later, A.C. Moore had more coupons.. this time a 50% off one, only good for 1 day.. well I think we are going to go for it.. The reviews look great, and I think we can do 30.00.  So I send Angel to get it. 

they ran out...

Now, I am on the verge of tears over a sewing machine.. and to add from that my mom informs me that she got Anna a scarf and hat for Christmas.. (she already has the one I made her last year) .. Ok.. I need to calm down.. this is not what Christmas is all about. 

We go on with the week and I find out that Angel is taking David to see Meadow in Hartford.. (about 1.5 hours away).. suddenly a light bulb moment..

I check online to see if there is an A.C. Moore in the area.. yes there is!  So I look at their coupons.. 50% off good all week!  So the day of the visit I call A.C. Moore.  I am on hold for a bit.. they are busy.. finally someone is able to help.. She tells me there is 1 sewing machine left and she will hold it for us!  Whoo hoo.. my heart races!  I am happy!!  I immediately tell Angel and arm him with coupon and directions..

After he is gone, I am excited.. then I get the call.. "honey, who did you talk to??"  umm.. ok.. I never ever hear names ..  He tells me they can't find it.. oh man.. I then realize the one who put it on hold probably isn't even there anymore.. After me telling him the exact conversation with the lady on the phone.. he convinces them to try again.. He keeps me on the line talking and then I hear.. she got it.. they found it..

So now I am thrilled!  30.00 for a 60.00 machine.. and I found a bunch of fabric from my aunt that I had put away.  This is truly going to be great.

Now, I have never ever expected anyone to get for Anna (or David either when he was little).  However I just found out that she is getting two awesome gifts (one from Justine and one from David/Abby) ..

So once again, I let the gift giving get in the way of truly experiencing the joy of Christmas.. I have alot to learn. 

Maybe I should stop school this week instead of next week and just spend time doing things with Anna.  We don't have the store bought gingerhouse kit this year but maybe we could just make some.. We can't make all our usual Christmas gifts but I am sure we can do a few.. Maybe we could try to make some homemade type of gifts for others..

Maybe now is the time to just enjoy the time together instead of stressing out. 

Monday, December 14, 2009

Home-made Christmas

This is a tough year for us.  We were not able to even purchase a tree this year.
Abby, being the sweetheart she is, let us use her little tree. 

We decided to try a popcorn garland..

Annaleah decided to take lots of pics, these are only a few.


3d paper star

I had forgotten I made this garland with snowflakes last year. 

Leftover Helium + children = fun!

As we were getting ready to do some clear areas to make room for Christmas decorations I notice,
we still have the helium tank from Anna's birthday party..
In July..




The Hair Cut

Annaleah needed a trim.  I had told her it would only be a little bit and she wouldn't even notice.  Anna was dead set against it. 

On Friday, Abby was here relaxing and looking at pics from past years and we came across one with Anna with shoulder length hair.  Abby loved it  and told Anna it would look great on her again.  Anna decided that it would be awesome.  So she begged. 

So I start the process of cutting. 
I really wasn't intending to cut it too short..
but after I started to snip, I swear the hair just kinda shrunk upwards. 
I was trying to cut around the middle of the area between her shoulders and the end of the hair. 

As I got halfway thru.. she panicked.. and started crying.. saying, "I change my mind!"

She was crying and I had to comfort her.  I told her she still looks very beautiful..
She calmed down and went to look in the bathroom mirror. 

She still isn't very happy about it. 
However, she felt alot better when Abby saw the hair and told her she was beautiful! 
Wait.. Didn't I say that?  
I guess it only matters when someone other than your own mother tells you that you are beautiful. 

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Counting the days til Christmas..

Last post for today, I promise!! 

Every year, we make a Countdown Kisses for the Christmas Season.  It is really simple to make.  We just lay out plastic wrap, line up the kisses down the middle, fold both ends of the plastic wrap over the kisses and tie each section with string.  Then hang!  Every morning, Annaleah comes to me and gives me a really sweet soft peck on the cheek.  Then she goes and gets a kiss from the Countdown Kisses.  This has been a tradition for a good 3-4 years now.. and one I can see us doing for many years to come.

Also this year we have started using the Advent Calendar provided by ActivityVillage.  So far Anna is really enjoying it.  They focus one one item a day.  Today was candy canes.  She colors a printable sheet and hangs it on her tree (they use numbered squares but we had to try something different.. just cause we can!).  There is a joke a day, a craft, and a video a day, as well as other things usually.  Today was a really cool video about the making of candy canes.  We had fun watching this video.

You can find the Advent Calendar here

Here is a pic!

You can see the Countdown Kisses on one side and her Advent Tree on the other. 
She did that tree all by herself!  

A bit of catching up..

I usually post over at my Xanga Blog.. but recently have been thinking of moving over here.. which means I have not been posting much at all.  Mostly playing around, especially with templates and backgrounds..

Today was Annaleah's ballet performance at a nursing home.
I was sad I did not get to see her perform.. but I did get some pics while they were getting ready.

First they were doing their Chinese Tea Dance

 Of course, Anna wasn't looking at the camera here..

 and I ended up chopping off the poor girl at the end here..

In this pic, they are getting ready for their Scarecrow Dance

A nice treat for a job well done!

Anna has been sitting on this guys poor lap for years!!
I am surprise he hasn't complained that she is getting too big now. 

Thanksgiving Day..

well, actually, the day after..

We went to mom's to celebrate.  We had a great time.  We had not seen everyone in quite some time.. so it was really special to finally get together. 

These two hung out together the entire time!

After dinner nap

Tuckered out.

November Birthdays..

I am kinda late posting this. I have been fiddling with this blog

There have been many birthdays in the month of November.  November is indeed a special month for me.. It all started 21 years ago! 

21 years ago.. I became a mom.. it was the most unbelievable and fantastic journey ever.. not to mention scary. 

When I finally got to hold this precious baby.. I was over whelmed with so many emotions.. There was no other feeling that could compare..

I am amazed at how fast time flies..

Wasn't he a cutie?

Being a single mom definitely was interesting.. David was my entire life.. there was nothing I would not have done for him.


Having David in my life has made me a better person.  The Lord has taught me so much through David. 

Here are some Birthday Pics

and a little video

Happy 21st Birthday, David!  We love you! 

About 8 years ago, a young lady entered our lives.. She became my niece.  Her smile could light up an entire room.  She just happened to even share a birthday with David. 

The precious girl is Kaitlyn


She came to into our lives fully of energy!! 

and with lots of hugs and love..

we enjoy every moment we can spend with kaitlyn..

thank you so much for entering our hearts..

Happy 10th Birthday, Kaitlyn! 

12 years ago...

This beauty was born..

She was the flower girl at my wedding..

She was the sweetheart who loved to tell really long stories..
and practice crying in the mirror..

She loved getting all prettied up and getting her pictures taken..

She is very kind, patient and thoughtful..

Especially when it comes to playing with little anna..

If anna cried she would say.. anna push me.. and pretend to fall til anna would laugh.

She is just so loving and sweet, you want to scoop her up and keep her forever..
at least I do...

she is a little diva

A ballerina

A princess

Who won't stop growing!  No matter how much we beg! 

She is my neice, Jade

These days it is hard to get a good pic of Jade, because she is always like this

Or ...

has her nose in a book! 

Happy 12th Birthday Jade! 

Of course we must not forget the newest member November birthdays..

This precious baby girl,

turned 1!

Happy Birthday, Meadow!