Monday, February 25, 2013

Mosaic Reviews--Blog Planner Review

I'm a little excited about this post.  This is my first review as a team member of Mosaic Reviews!  We were given a choice of ten free blog planners to review.  This was perfect for me because, to be honest, it never crossed my mind to plan out my blog posts!  I know all the big bloggers do it but I'm more of what you call a "random" blogger.  In the past I've gone an entire year without blogging!  I'm a little more consistent now but my posts are still random...I write about whatever I'm thinking of or whatever pictures I'm looking at. ;-)

I chose this planner from The Flourishing Abode.
You know why?  Because it is simple.  It is perfect.  It fits me.  The other blog planners were amazing as well, but this is exactly what I need.  One page encompasses an entire week.  There is a line for each day.  This is where I scheduled a couple of blog post topics according to what we had going on that week.  I kind of rock at fill-in-the-blank forms! haha  

Under the weekly section there are two columns separated into four sections.  Notes, Images to make, Future post ideas, and To do.  I liked these sections because it gave me a place to start.  I was able to focus and plan out what I wanted and what I needed to do.  The very last section is titled "Where to promote."  Lightbulb moment!  If you promote your blog, more people will read your content.  (Like I said, it never occurred to me to plan out my posts, nor to promote my blog at all.  I am a changed woman, though, thanks to this fantastic little planner!)  I searched around and found a couple of interesting linky parties on blogs that I loved...ones that I could contribute to (and my goodness, I sent a lot of time reading!).

Want to know what I liked most about this blog planner?  It is super cute!  And free!  April at The Flourishing Abode shared it because she's just plain awesome!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Let it Rain

Let it rain, let it rain.
Open the floodgates of Heaven
Let it rain, let it rain.
Open the floodgates of Heaven

The Lord reigns, let the earth be glad
Let the distance shores rejoice
Clouds and thick darkness surround him
Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne
A fire goes before him and consumes his foes on every side
His lightning lights up the world
The earth sees and trembles
The mountains melt like wax before the Lord
Before the Lord of all the earth
The Heavens proclaim His righteousness
And all peoples will see His Glory

We want to see Your Glory, God!
Do you want to see His Glory?
Lift your voices, lift your hands!

Let it rain, let it rain.
Open the floodgates of Heaven
Let it rain, let it rain.
Open the floodgates of Heaven

*Let it Rain by Michael W Smith

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Getting back up

As a {homeschooling} momma, I'm used to teaching my kids.  I've taught them the alphabet, how to add numbers, the continents and oceans.  I've taught them how to brush their teeth and how to throw trash in the garbage.  I've spent my life as a parent teaching them.  When that role is flipped, when my kids teach me something, it's neat and exciting and such a blessing.  When they teach me, it's usually a BIG life lesson. 

Cade has been riding horses for about seven or eight months now.  He loves it.  He loves horses.  He loves hugging horses!  His favorite horse, the one he rides most often, is Cochise.  He's comfortable with Cochise; he feels safe on him.  They make a great team.

For a brief period of time, Cade was having to ride other horses.  They all have a different feel to them and Cade's teacher wanted him to experience that.  One day, he was riding Charlie.  Charlie's trot is not smooth like Cochise's.  As a matter of fact, Charlie started to sidestep and stumbled a bit while trotting.  Cade lost his balance and fell.  I watched my baby boy fall off a horse!  My heart stopped.  I held my breath.  Thank God, Cade hopped up and said he was okay.  He was scared, though.  The entire right side of his body was covered in dirt where he fell.  And he was holding his wrist.

Then he did the bravest thing.  He got back up on that horse!  He didn't want to.  But he did, even though he was scared and hurting.  He finished his lesson with Charlie.  He went back the next week and fought through the fear and worry and panic.  I'm proud to say that within a couple of lessons, he was back to trotting.  No panic, no fear.  Just joy!

How many times have I given up out of fear?  How many times have I been hurt or scared and run away?  How many times have I held myself back from something I would love because I'm afraid?  Too many, unfortunately.   I've lost out on too much.  I want to have courage and face my fears.  I want to overcome my hurts. 

We've all heard the old adage, "If at first you don't succeed, dust yourself off and try again."  My son lived it.  And he left a lasting impression on this momma's head and heart!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

She's funny. And sweet. And beautiful.

Three is such a fun age!!  Camden says so many things that crack me up and then she'll turn right around and say something that melts me and leaves in a puddle!  The other day she told me, "Oh, you my princess girl.  Mommy, you my baby!"  See?  Melt, melt, melt!

 "Mommy, I'm growing bigger like an adult. I'm growing taller. I'm going to have boobies like you!"

"Mommy, you a little stink poot!"

**Cade is super funny and sweet, too.  I'll have to write down some of what he says, soon.  It's harder getting pictures of him, though.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Family time traditions

My little family doesn't have too many traditions although I love the idea of them.  I love the idea of my kids being grown and having fond memories of our family.  I love the idea of my kids knowing that their parents loved them desperately and chose to show that love through fun family traditions.

Now, don't get me wrong.  We do fun things with our kids.  After I put Camden to bed, Jeff and I play Super Mario Bros. on the Wii with Cade.  This is Cade's love language!  The boy loves Mario Bros and has such a good time playing the game with us.  I guess that's a kind of tradition.  I've taken Camden to get her fingernails painted a couple of times.  She loves it!   So that's another sort of tradition.  But those aren't exactly what I'm talking about.

I'm thinking more along the lines of a family vacation or outing.  A place or activity that is done regularly.  Through the years.

So anyway, recently we went to Kemah Boardwalk.  It was an amazingly beautiful day.  The sun was shining and it was in the low 70's.  It wasn't too crowded like it can be closer to summer time.  We had such a great was truly a blessing just being there together as a family.  We ate outside, right on the bay, at Cadillac Bar.  We watched the boats go by and saw a couple of feral kitties scrounging for food.  Then we walked around and since it was so warm, we let the kids play in the splash fountains.  Cade mostly stayed out of the water but Camden ended up getting soaked!

We walked over to the Aquarium and went to Stingray Bay so we could pet the stingrays!  Both kids loved it but Cade really loved it.  He told me it was the best day ever which made my heart just sing!  The stingrays would swim by and we would dip our hands in the water to touch them.  They're very smooth and slick feeling.  A few thought we had food so they'd come up out of the water with their mouths open.  It was crazy!  Camden's favorites were the two big, black ones that stayed on the bottom.  They never came up top for us to pet them but she kept an eye on them, calling them the "momma" and "daddy!"

 The rest of the afternoon was spent walking around playing games and winning cheap prizes!  There was a live band playing so we listened to them for a little bit.  They were pretty good.  I wanted to find out who they were but I couldn't find their name anywhere.  We also rode the train and the double decker carousel.

The kids had a blast and so did we.  This is what I'm talking about...a place we all enjoy.  Something we can do as a family and have fun together and make memories!  I think we'll have to start going a couple times a year and make a new family tradition!

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Keeping Busy

Homeschooling my big kid has been a little difficult lately.  Besides the fact that he dawdles and sometimes takes forever to get lessons done (which drives me crazy!), I've got my sweet baby girl who wants to do school work, too.  She's a smart little sponge, soaking up everything and she wants to learn.  The problem lies with her wanting to learn while I'm teaching her brother.  I've tried to give her (new) educational toys to play with.  I've tried workbooks.  She always says, "Teach me, Mommy!"  She wants me to teach her the way I'm teaching Cade.

The other day I set up a paint station for her.  It bought me some time.  It also bought me some serious cleaning up! Haha!  She loves painting.  Somehow, it always ends with her finger painting.  Then hand painting.  ;-)

Here's something that kept her busy for awhile: opening a big box!  I ordered a chair and when it came in, Camden wanted to open the box.  She worked for a long time stabbing holes in the box with a pencil and peeling tape.  She finally got it open and pulled the chair out.  I was impressed that she did that all by herself.  She's strong!  It kept her busy and focused.

I'm going to look into preschool curriculum for her pretty soon.  She'll be 4 this summer.  I'm not too big on early schooling--I think kids should learn through play and life, itself--but she's interested in learning.  So something fun is what I want...nothing too formal.  She likes books and she loves hands on projects.  Anything involving paint and glue and cooking is right up her alley.  Any suggestions for me?

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


I apologize for the break I've taken.  We learned last week that we lost our second baby. :(  I was 10 weeks pregnant.  I now have two sweet babies waiting for me in Heaven.  The first we named Carsten and this one we named Carrigan.

Miscarriage is heartbreaking but I'd rather not use my blog to swell on that.  I'd like to talk about the amazing friends God has blessed me with!  I'm part of a local MOPs group and these girls have blessed me in so many unexpected ways.  The day I got home from the hospital, they came bearing gifts.  Food, food, and more food!  Homemade lasagna, huge salad and bread sticks from Olive Garden, homemade enchiladas, chips and dip from Pappasitos, ice cream, chocolate cake, homemade cookies, a gallon of tea, and more.  They brought a basket with a scrubby and body wash and lotion and m&m's.  I was given precious cards and gift cards to restaurants.  And...a lady to clean my house!!  You heard right--they're sending someone to clean my house for me.  Yeah, baby!  I'm truly humbled by how amazingly kind, caring, and generous these girls are.  If you have young children and a MOPs group nearby, I highly recommend joining.  The friendship and encouragement are priceless!