Sunday, May 16, 2010

Catch Up.....busy week....busy weekend!!

With only a month left before I leave for a week long missions trip to Lima Peru.....time I am spending together with family friends is such a blessing!! I know God has great things in store for me in Peru, at the same time- I keep thinking I want to spend as much time as I can with my family & friends!!
I can say that this past week and weekend I accomplished just that!! Family & Friends GALORE!! Here is a re-cap for you.......
Shed tears of joy & tears of pain over this bad boy....
I bought it at Hobby Lobby last love love it......sat on my bookshelf in the Living room.....well IT DID!!!! Ugh.....having boys I don't know why I even try to have "pretty" things!!
I found it in the store and then found out it was 50% off......Jumped for JOY with tears knowing it would look so good in my house!! Then when T brought the base to me without the top and tells me "Mama C broke your pretty!!" Tears of sadness fell!! They weren't from my eyes!!!
Oh well, maybe I can glue it......add it to the list of GLUED ITEMS!!! HA!! Mother of BOYS!!! One day I will look at all my pretty things in and empty house that was once filled with laughter from little boys!!

Took time to see my beautiful Lily's favorite flower!! Lily is MY FAVORITE FLOWER!!! U have many planted in my flower beds.....looking forward to seeing more bloom soon!! Along with other flowers!!C insisted on shaving with Daddy.....every stroke I heard...."mama dook at me's!" He used and old razor with NO BLADE!!! T shaves with daddy every chance he gets.....but when C saw what fun it was.....well he wanted right in!!
Visited a local farm FULL of fun and loving animals.......Mrs. H has a wonderful "petting friendly" farm for kids!! C got to ride "Shorty" the pony. B put him on there he said "I need my gun!!" He was a REAL cowboy!!!Mrs. H & T gathered eggs......then C came up and grabbed one.....never in my life have I ever seen an 88 year old lady move so fast!!!! I was right with her only from a different angle- she caught him first... then we both looked up and laughed!! She said "I knew what was coming next!!" And to think she has only spent and hour with C!!! HA!! Learned which came first.....the chicken or the egg??? Feed a baby Lamb & baby pig by bottle!! She has ducks, goats, sheep, pigs, all kind of birds!! And you can pet almost every one of them!! Mrs. H is the hardest working lady I have met in a long time- she takes care of all these animals by herself!! Wonderful lady....loves kids. She asked if the boys could have a COKE?!?!?! Seeing how they have NEVER EVER had a real COKE in their lives.....I thought- you know there is a time and a place for everything!! Special can you turn down a real COKE from a glass bottle!! How cool is that!! Nickel a piece too- that's my kind of price!! We will definitely go back and visit.....takes you back to the good 'Ole days!!
Had the chance to see eye to eye with a Budweiser Clydesdale's.... . and their dog.....They actually had some "public showing times" but we just crashed in when we had the chance. They came to our town festival as I remember 4 years ago....we just went in the barn and watched them work with the very large and beautiful horses. It was fun getting to see them bath and groom the animals. Amazing how much work goes in to taking care of theses large horses.
Keep in mind B is almost 7 feet tall.....this Horse is TALL!!! T said "daddy you can ride this horse!!" They are just so pretty to see in person if you ever get the chance- GO!! All of the handlers and workers were so helpful and glad for us to come and watch them work!!
The boys loved seeing the horses!!!
Was Humbled by these hands & tiny feet......My Friend R had her Baby E at 27 weeks gestation. She weighed only 2lbs and 6oz.....she is now 4 weeks old and a hefty 3lbs and 10oz. She is precious and so tiny. When you see all the wires and monitors it is overwhelming to imagine what her mom is going through. I know the only way she is making it day to day is by God's Grace.....which happens to be the baby's middle name.

R was the leader in a bible study I attended when I had only one toddler and was expecting C. She was such a sweet and kind person- so full of FAITH and she inspired me so much when we got a chance to visit her and her sweet baby at the hospital in Little Rock. Please keep them both in your prayers- hopefully she will be able to come home in a few weeks Lord willing to her sister & brother too!! Keep her husband in your prayers too being 3 hours away from his wife with the other children!! Only God can carry them all through!!CELEBRATED a 1st BIRTHDAY....We drove to Little Rock to see out newest little cutie pie celebrate his 1st Birthday!!! Baby T.K. his mom & B are cousins. Here we are with all 3 boys....little blurry- but you try to get them to all look at the same time and smile....STILL!!! Boys....they are all gonna be a MESS in a few years!!We had a great time seeing him open his gifts.....or his mom rather.....don't ya just love those first parties......the kids is just happy to be there!! HA!! He did like his CAKE.....and J did great making it!!! She is a teacher....she has that crafty side down!!He loved every bite.....this is my favorite picture....could you just eat those cheeks up too!!! HOW CUTE IT HE!!!

Saw a HUGE step of many more in school.....Today we saw our little Niece AG graduate Kindergarten, she is an official 1st grader.....How cute it she!!! We are super proud of all her accomplishments. We love her & her mom Aunt Cole!!
How pretty is she.....we gave her some FLOWERS for her accomplishments!!!

And that's a you can see now why I haven't had time to sit and post anything.....not to mention 4 doctor visits in the last week. This week is not looking much slower!! HA!

I am remembering that each day each moment I spend with the boys and friends & family are cherished as if it were the last!! I am looking forward to my trip to Peru and
know I will come home with much much more respect for our Freedom of many things!!
Have a GREAT week!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Happy Mother's Day

What a wonderful day to celebrate.....Mother's the ladies who make the world go round. If it were not for a Mother, none of us would be here. So many years, I struggled with this holiday. Seemed like it was so hard to sit in church and not being a mother to a child on Earth- I was so empty inside. Seeing how I have 2 babies in heaven before I ever had one on Earth to hold in my arms.

I don't take my job as a mother lightly. It is important and each day I am blessed to be with my boys. I am so thankful for 2 healthy boys, I could never imagine my life without them!!

I do know how so many people can not see the Happiness in the holiday....whether their mother has passed away, they have lost a child too soon or they long to be a mother. My prayers are for you today. I have felt those emotions myself on this very same day. Seeing how I lost my first baby on May often falls on Mother's day.

I was reading this book recently and ran across this great poem. I would like to share and dedicate to all the women who read this post. God has a special plan for everyone. All things are in God's timing and his Will...not ours. If we trust in him and fully rely on him to lead us....he will show us the way.
Continue On
By Roy Lessin
A Woman once fretted over the usefulness of her life.
She feared she was wasting her potential being a devoted wife and mother.
She wondered if the time and energy she invested in her husband and children would make a difference. At times she got discouraged because so much of what she did seemed to go unnoticed and unappreciated.
"Is it worth it?" she often wondered.
"Is there something better that I could be doing with my time?"
It was during one of these small moments of questioning that she heard a still small voice of her heavenly Father speak to her heart.
"You are a wife and a mother because that is what I have called you to be. Much of what you do is hidden from the public eye. But I notice. Most of what you give is done without remuneration.
But I am your reward.
Your Husband cannot be the man I have called him to be without your support. Your influence upon him is greater than you think and more powerful than you will ever know, I bless him through your service and honor through your love.
Your Children are precious to Me. Even more precious than they are to you. I have entrusted them to your care to raise for Me.
What you invest in them is an offering for Me. You may never be in the public spotlight.
But your obedience shines as a bright light before Me.
Continue on.
Remember you are My servant.
Do all to Please Me."

Happy Mother's Day, to all the Mom's, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, and Mother's to Be one day!!
I pray you all have a wonderful day!!


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Teaching kids to organize their toys

Ok, here are the incriminating pictures I told you I would share. Oh My....what a mess!! This is T's room....before & after. I have worked with him since he has been here on "when you get something out....put it back!" This was the two weeks that we were running around crazy.....I did not follow through with all our chores those few weeks. So, this is what happens. NORMALLY....normally....his room looks like the after pics when we go to bed or nap.

Starting with Step 1 STORAGE: To teach your kids to have a home for every toy....even if it shares a home with other "trucks, balls, etc" Everything needs a home. I can hand T a toy and say go put this in it's home and he knows where it belongs!!

Step 2- SORT....when we clean we sort into piles....trucks, balls, stuffed animals, etc. Then put all away at the same time....instead of making numerous trips across the room.

Step 3- DON'T DO IT FOR THEM.....I HELP them, but as I help they are helping......if they start playing with toys, I remind them stay on task.....and when we are done we will get toys out and play. If they refuse to clean keep in mind they might be too tired, or not feeling save it for when they are feeling better. If it is BAD memories it will not work!!

Step 4- Make it fun.....sing the clean up song "Clean up Clean up everybody do your share....Clean up Clean up pick up toys everywhere!" Even C at age 2 can sing it. When I start singing....they immediately start picking up.

Step 4- Rewards!!! Have a Popsicle or Ice cream sandwich for reward....or quarter for chore jar....stickers....what ever works for your child. Now that we have done this for so long.....his room stays clean- BUT when I need to go and straighten up, a pat on the back works!! We have a HUGE Wooden TOY BOX for large toys.....stick horses, swords, stuffed animals. It is nice to throw a lot of things in but not too much- so you can still keep it some what organized!!

Look at that happy helper......he jumped into every picture and posed!! HA!!
I keep an empty plastic bag hanging on the door knob and throw away all color pages, and just TRASH I happen to find. I also like to wear something with pockets.....and put small things that don't belong or even things I don't want them to see me throw away. Honestly, every time we clean.....I throw away every little "happy meal" toy we get.....usually because it is broken too!!
I also try to find any TOYS are things we haven't used in awhile.....and remove.....usually they are never missed!!
Storage bins.....My dad made this and the toy box from scratch. If you are lucky and have a handy man in your family.....I just saw a storage solution in a pottery barn magazine....and showed it to him. HE gave it to him for his second birthday! Bought the LARGE bins at Wal Mart. On each Bin is a PICTURE and words of what is in them, since he cannot read yet.....he knows the pictures. They are BALLS, RESCUE TRUCKS, CONSTRUCTION TRUCKS, TRUCKS, SKATEBOARD RAMP & TANKS, HANDY MANNY & MICKEY MOUSE things. Those are our bins now. The cards are removable- so you can change them as they grow out of the toys. This storage unit is also on caster I can remove it and vacuum behind and under it. WE LOVE IT!!! It is wonderful to have.
I also have little....shoebox size bins under his bed. For all the little tiny toys, toy soldiers, matchbox cars, toy bugs!!! There are 6 small bins. They also have pictures on them to help him keep them straight.
Like I said, we have done this for 2 years. But I firmly believe that if you don't teach your children to clean up after themselves, it enables them- especially boys!! Boys really have NO natural instinct to clean up after themselves I believe....I live with 3 of them!! And it also makes your job harder.
This morning we had a play date with some kiddos.....right before they came, the living room was already cluttered....I asked T to take his bin.....pick up all toys and go put them in there right home. I explained to him that we want our house to be clean for company, and there would be little babies who could get hurt if they played with big kids toys.....he completely understood.....and BOTH BINS were empty before guest arrived.....I then hugged his neck gave him a HIGH 5 and told him I appreciated his help. Honestly, that took 10 minutes off of my job!!
Ok, so that is my "system for toys!" It works for us......what works for you??

Monday, May 3, 2010

Help Clutter Free you living space of TOYS!!!

Have you ever walked through your living room at night and stepped on a small toy....that made you do all kinds of crazy gyrations just to try to avoid the next step away!! Or maybe some one calls on the phone, says they are on their way to your there in 10 minutes!!! You run through the house like a mad woman- throwing toys in all sorts of places, kicking them under the couch...closets.....etc.

I have, and some times it can be embarrassing.....the sea of toys. Most people are understanding- usually when they see two toddler boys......they know it was probably clean that morning. Actually, my living room can go from completely toy free to completely TOY CLUTTER in 1 minute FLAT!!!

With the addition on Maizie our Lab puppy in December. She helped show me how many toys they left out. I have always tried to help boys pick up toys prior to nap & bed time, that way when you start!!! Seems like the little puppy, would chew on toys of all kinds- then I was afraid she would choke on them. Also, the boys would get upset when there toys had CHEW marks on them too!!

Here is a little system I have started, not thinking it would stay and work really really good! Mostly just to keep out of harms way of the puppy!!

I found these two "bins" at Wal-Mart. I labelled them each with their name. Placed them on a table in the Living/Dining Room. They both know which one is theirs too!! If I happen to walk through the room and there are toys lying vacant on the floor- I can pick them up.....walk by the bin.....throw them in it......and move along!!

When it is time for the boys to go rest....they are to take their bins into their rooms and put all the toys up in there proper home. They LOVE it!! I have to admit....I do too!!!

I took pictures of a messy room this week, and hope to post a story this week on how quickly I was able to help show T how to organize and put things up.....on his own. Our HUGE rule at the house is when you get it out....put it it's home!! When they have a million toys it is hard to keep them all straight. Then they will come and ask...."where is my black monster truck?" Well, if it isn't put up in the right is missing!!

I think I am the Queen of BINS.....I absolutely LOVE some bins and organizing!! Like I said, Hopefully I will get to post some more this week!!


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Family Pictures

I love love love get pictures made with the boys. I did more often when they were little......almost every two months or so.....they just grow so fast- you have to capture it!!

My real life friend Stacy, who also has a blog HERE. She took the boys pictures last the one above- of the boys on the fence. I was SO IMPRESSED with her picture taking skills thought we would try her again....with Daddy present this time of course.

Stacy is one of the MOST talented people I have ever met. Not only does she stay at home with 2 of her 3 kiddos, she sews, she teaches dance, she teaches twirling, and takes pictures!! I can barely stay at home with 2 kids.....she can runs circles around any stay at home mom I know!!

Most importantly she is a woman of God- and give God all the GLORY and HONOR for all her many talents!! Here is a glimpses into the evening we had with Mrs. Stacy.

This one by far is one of my favorites....those little boots.....I could eat them up- of course I had to buy RED ONES!! I love this one of ALL MY BOYS!!! Each one all different- but could not imagine my life without ANY of them!!
If you have kids- you know how hard it is to get them to pose.....the thing I like about Stacy is- she prefers just to let them be....and follows them around...... Boys will be boys.This by far was the HARDEST photo shoot I can ever remember being at, Stacy was so patient!! The boys were in RARE form and the only other time I remember SWEATING while taking pictures was when C turned 6 months old......and he kept CRAWLING OUT of the room!! Ugh!!
We laughed the whole the time my friend Denise was taking our pictures. She is the one who took the pictures of the boys with the cheerios box at the bottom left of the blog. In a different but similar way- Stacy and Denise are a lot a like.....such talent!!You try to get everyone to look at the it is those moments that will steal your heart when you capture the TRUE picture of what being a mother is ALL about!! These are the moments you live for and the ones you will never forget!!And when they wont stand still and smile you sit back and look at how much they have grown and that they are friends and can hold on to each other's hand and not yours. This is my FAVORITE!!That's when at the moment when this picture was taken.....seems like frustration.....but in reality we can look back and laugh!! Remember when the boys would NEVER sit still......and they are teens now and won't get off the couch to take out the trash.......or they are in college and only come home every so often and sit on the couch.....then one day they will walk alone down and isle and take the hand of some very fortunate wonderful young lady, I pray for her everyday!!
There are days when we think we can't make it and going to loose our minds as moms and dads of toddlers!! But this is just a season of life......and we will not get today back ever.....spend it wisely and spend your time wisely......pleasing to the Lord!!
Have a WONDERFUL weekend!! God Bless!!