Showing posts from June, 2013

Potty Training Jacob Day #1

So today after waking up to a messy poopy diaper from Jacob, I decided that once again I was going to try to potty train him. I was DONE with poopy diapers from him. D.O.N.E.  DONE!!!!

So day #1 started....I put him in pull ups this morning and he actually did not fight me to sit on the potty. Instead he was okay with it. I praised him for not having peed in his pull up. I praised him for trying to go. I told him he was such a good boy.

This afternoon, he actually went pee in the potty for the first time! He was so happy.

Then while I was making dinner, he told me he had to go potty. I got him on the potty and he accidentally peed on his leg and he was SO upset.

I hope this is a  sign of good things to come with Jacob going potty, because he needs to be out of diapers. I NEED him to be out of diapers. I think he did a pretty good job for day #1. He went pee in the potty 3 times!  I hope this is a good stepping stone in the right direction.

Any potty training tips for teaching boys …

Reluctantly Related by Deanna Brann, Ph.D. (book review)

From the back cover:

With humor, compassion and focus, in-law expert Dr. Deanna Brann shows you step by step how to bring positive, lasting change to your mother-in-law or daughter-in-law (MIL or DIL) relationship. Her groundbreaking research and powerful techniques have helped women nationwide to live happier, healthier and more peaceful live with the women in their extended-by-marriage families.
Understand why your in-law relationship is so hardLearn powerful tools and techniques to bring peace and lasting change to your in-law relationshipChange your relationship without having to confront your in-law
My thoughts:

Reluctantly Related: Secrets to Getting Along with your Mother-in-Law or Daughter-in-Law by Deanna Brann, Ph.D. is a good book that describes the different personalities that may be present in a Mother-in-Law and Daughter-in-Law relationship. Brann identifies different personality types for MILs and DILs. She identifies the personalities of MILs as Comfortable Carla, Motheri…

Children's Garden

Last Friday, we took an unplanned trip to the Knox County Children's Garden for lunch and an afternoon out of the house.

We did not plan this. Friday morning I took the kids to the library and to Kroger and I came home to a very overwhelming smell of sewer in our house and no water in either toilet. There was water on the floors around the bottom of the toilet. We called our landlord, and to make a long story short, it seems the city was cleaning the sewer system in our area and they must have sucked all the water out. The smell was AWFUL!!! Needless to say I suggested to Bill that we take the kids out to eat for lunch and let the house air out.

So we decided to get McDonalds and head out to the Children's Garden. It was on our family bucket list to go to this summer so it worked!

The last time we went, Benjamin was maybe 3 months old. It was a very nice afternoon.

The kids enjoyed their lunch and running around and exploring the gardens.

Finding frogs in the 2 ponds.


Knox County Relay for Life

Over the weekend I had the privilege to take part in an amazing event in our area. In actuality I believe that this type of activity is in over 20 different countries. I am talking about Relay for Life.

Relay for Life is an 18 hour relay walk that takes place with different teams participating that raise money to help find a cure for cancer. During the Knox County Relay for Life event, there were 44 different teams represented and each team had at least one member on the track walking through the entire 18 hours. The first lap is taken by the survivors...There were 4 women on the team that I was on that were survivors, including my mom.

This year I took part in the St. Vincent De Paul team. I felt drawn to do this for 2 reasons.... First my mom who was diagnosed with bladder cancer...who had surgery, then went through 2 bouts of chemo. I can say that she is now among the survivors.

I also did this for 2 friends.  I watched a friend go through being diagnosed and treated for ovarian …

Sunday Night Chit Chat

HAPPY SUNDAY!!! It has been a CRAZY, BUSY weekend around here with A LOT going on! Friday we went to the Children's Garden. Friday night and Saturday morning I participated in an amazing event---Relay for Life. Saturday afternoon I had a class for work. And today I left at 8:40 this morning and spent the entire day in Columbus, going with my parents and sister to see the show "Wicked." Home just in time to take Rebecca to Vacation Bible School. Now I am typing this up, getting ready to go pick her up. It has been a busy weekend and Sunday. 
And since it is Sunday, it is time once again for Sunday Night Chit-Chat...hosted by our friend Carla! To play along simply start your post with a photo or quote... Copy and paste the starters and link up to Carla so she and others can visit you and see what you've been up to!

So here goes:

 Reading? I am currently reading "99 Blessings: An Invitation to Life" by Brother David Steindl-RastListening to?  The TV is on, …

Car update

Last week I told you how Bill came home and told me that the car was having transmission problems....

We thought that we were going to have to get the transmission rebuilt to the tune of over $2000....

We ended up taking the car to a transmission place about 40 minutes away. We called a local auto repair place and they could put a new transmission in, but not rebuild one and they recommended this transmission place 40 minutes away.

We dropped the car off on Tuesday. (Which was okay, but meant that we were down to 1 car, and that meant that the kids and I were pretty much stuck at home since Bill needed the van for work.)

Wednesday afternoon, Bill called and the mechanic said they were still testing it and weren't sure yet what the issue was.

Thursday afternoon, Bill called and was told that it was not a valve problem and that there was a code that the mechanic did not recognize that came up and that he sent that code to a mechanic in California to see if he knew what it was an…

Took the kids to the park...

One of the things on my summer bucket list was to take the kids to the park more (ideally at least once every 2 weeks). There are several parks close to our house and there is no reason I can't take them to play there.

Well today the weather screams "Go OUTSIDE! GET SOME FRESH AIR!!!" The sun is warm, but there is a cool breeze and almost no humidity! Perfect weather to play outside in!

So I packed the kids up and headed out to the park this morning. Honestly, I usually wait to take them until Bill can go too....something about taking all 3 by myself that scares me!

But not today!

Today I seized the moment and took the kids all by myself to the park.

First we went to the closest one to our house, which also happens to be right next to our town pool. There were TONS of kids there, all with their swimming towels, etc. I think there is a morning camp there for the kids before the pool opens. The park was crazy busy. The kids played for about 10 minutes, then I asked Re…

Was up even later last night, and NOT because of reading....

Last night, where we live, we were in the path of a major storm system that was coming through the Midwest and was supposed to cause some really bad winds and rains. The first wave was supposed to occur after 7pm and cause some thunderstorms but then once the sun went down those were supposed to dissipate and then the next horrible wave was supposed to occur around 2am. In that wave, they were forecasting winds upwards of 80mph.

Last June we had a similar storm system occur that caused us to lose power for a week and caused a lot of damage in the surrounding areas. So we were worried!

Well around 8: 15 I noticed that there was a storm cell forming close to us (about half hour away) and so I hurriedly got the kids into bed, so that hopefully they would be asleep before the weather hit. We ended up getting a severe thunderstorm out of that cell, with a tornado warning. Well the cell went just south of us and we got heavy rain and some lightning, but nothing really bad. (Thank goodness…

What kept me up until 12:30AM last night?

I have been waking up early and going walking. That means I have been going to bed around 10 and lights out at 11.

Well due to my husbands work schedule he had to go in early this morning which meant I took the day off of walking, which meant I didn't necessarily have to go to bed early or get up early.

So last night I was up until 12:30AM.

Doing what you might ask....

Well here is the reason:

That is right.

I was up reading.

I haven't done that in a LONG time!

I found Debbie Macomber's newest book at the library the other day in the rapid reads section. Rapid Reads are new books that you are limited to have for 7 days, you cannot renew them, and you cannot request them. I was so excited! I LOVE Debbie Macomber's books!

I read the entire thing last night! It was SO GOOD!!! I would highly recommend reading it!

When was the last time you stayed up really late reading?

Car problems

On Saturday, Bill came home from working in Columbus (over an hour away) and he said I have one word for you and you are not going to like it.

I asked him what that was and he said: "Transmission".


We had the transmission on our Saturn rebuilt about 5 years ago to the tune of $2400.

Bill said it started having the same symptoms on Saturday when he was coming home.

So this morning, I drove half an hour to pick Bill up at a transmission place where he dropped the car off.

Thank God we have the van (which we were gifted with in December).

I am praying it is not a super pricey fix, but my gut tells me different.

I guess we shall see. Now I need to go look at our budget and figure out how we are going to pay for this.

Sunday Night Chit Chat

HAPPY SUNDAY!!! It has been a low key, napping, not really doing anything, at home kind of a day here. Just what I needed! 
Since it is Sunday, it is time once again for Sunday Night Chit-Chat...hosted by our friend Carla! To play along simply start your post with a photo or quote... Copy and paste the starters and link up to Carla so she and others can visit you and see what you've been up to!

So here goes:

Reading? I am currently reading "Undeniably Yours" by Becky Wade. (Hope to finish it this week and get a review done before Friday.)Listening to?  The TV is on, and Jacob is scraping the bottom of his ice cream bowl with his spoon, getting every last drop. Watching? The kids are watching "Jake and the Neverland Pirates" right now. I have a couple shows on the DVR to watch including "19 Kids and Counting" and "Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition." Cooking/Baking? Haven't really made anything special this week. Hoping to make some p…

The Christian Alphabet Book by Tracy Sands (book review)

From the back cover:

Do you know your Christian ABC's?

The Christian Alphabet Book is a unique, visual, and enjoyable way to learn the basics of Christianity. "Love," the dove from above, guides you from A to Z with special Biblical lessons of love for all ages.

What is more important than a firm foundation of faith?

Similar to learning to read from knowing the regular ABC's, one will be inspired to know, love and serve God by learning The Christian Alphabet.

Share the Gospel with your Children

Jesus told Peter, in the gospel of John, to "feed my lambs." The Christian Alphabet Book will help all teachers of children feed their little lambs spiritually. Give those you love this book to help spread the Good News about God's everlasting love and life.

The Christian Alphabet Book is more than a children's book. It is a book that families can cherish together while sharing its timeless messages that give Glory to God.

My thoughts:

The Christian Alphabet Boo…

What a Son Needs From His Mom by Cheri Fuller (book review)

From the back cover:

Ever Feel Like Your Son Is From a Different Planet?

Don't worry, Mom. There's a good reason why your son perplexes you. He's the OPPOSITE sex! Boys really do think, communicate, and process the world differently than girls. But no matter your son's age, he needs you, and he needs you in not-so-apparent ways.
Drawing from her own experiences, as well as those from moms and sons from around the country, Cheri Fuller shares what makes boys and young men tick and how to become a more welcome influence at every stage in their lives. She answers all the top questions, including:

"How can I help my son (and me!) deal with his emotions in a healthy way?"
"School is such a struggle. How can I help him?"
"Our personalities are SO different. How can we get on the same page?"
"My son hardly says a thing. What can I do?"
"What are the best ways to instill good values?"
"How can I encourage a lasting fai…

National Donut Day!

Did you know that today is unofficially "National Donut Day?"

Well it is, according to lots of people on facebook and around the web.

This morning as I logged on the computer to load a couple of coupons onto one of my store cards, I noticed people talking about National Donut Day on facebook.

Then I saw that several donut chains were offering free donuts with purchases today.

Unfortunately, none of them are in our area. :(

HOWEVER, I then remembered that I had been given a $10 Tim Horton's gift card at Christmas time from one of the parents at the school I work at....and I had not used it yet.

SO, I took the kids to the library this morning. Then to Kroger's for a few deals (free Tortilla chips!) and then I surprised them with a trip to Tim Horton's.

Because we just HAD to celebrate National Donut Day!! :) :)

Do you celebrate crazy holidays with your family? Do you have a favorite donut?

Strawberry Picking

One of the items on our family's summer bucket list was to go strawberry picking.

The kiddos LOVE strawberries and I thought it would be a neat experience for them to be able to pick their own strawberries and see that they just don't come from the store. I also wanted to get some to freeze so that I can make smoothies over the summer months.

I hoped that I wasn't too late. I wanted to do this last summer, but it seemed like strawberries were in season for maybe 5 days last year. It was a bad year last year.

Well this year I was on the ball. I have friended local orchards and farm markets on facebook and was thrilled when over the weekend Legend Hills Orchard and Farm Market posted that U-pick strawberries were open. YIPPEE!!!

On Tuesday afternoon, after Bill came home from work, we loaded the kids up and headed to the orchard (about 20 minutes away). We had a great time picking the strawberries!

We parked the van and one of the first things that happened was that Jaco…

Sweet Sanctuary by Kim Vogel Sawyer (book review)

From the back cover:

A Story of Hope and Love Set Against the Backdrop of World War II

Lydia Eldredge longs to provide sanctuary for her young son, Nicky. But a constant threat comes from Nicky's drug-addicted father, who wants the boy and seems willing to do whatever it takes to get him.

Dr. Micah Hatcher faithfully serves the immigrant population of Queens, New York. But under cover of darkness, he has a secret mission that challenges everything he thought he wanted out of life.

When Lydia and Micah's paths cross, they are suddenly wrapped up in each other's callings. Together, they seek a refuge of safety--for Nicky, for themselves, and for the needy people God puts into their lives. Amid turmoil and discord, can hope and love prevail?

My thoughts:

This was one of those books that I COULD NOT PUT DOWN! It drew me in the from the beginning and just never let go. The story of Lydia and how headstrong she is melds well with the characterization of Dr. Hatcher.

Lydia a…

2013 Summer Learning Goals for the Kids

Yesterday I shared with you our family's ambitious 2013 Summer Bucket List.
This summer, I also want to be more intentional in making some learning goals for the kiddos. I want to do this so that I am more intentional in their summer learning and that their brains don't turn to mush with too much TV watching. So this is what I have come up for their learning goals: 2013 Summer Learning Goals for the Kids For Benjamin: learn to stand on his own and cruise. Learn to hold his own cup. For Jacob: Potty training For Rebecca: To read daily and journal. To memorize addition and subtraction math facts. So there you have it. Some of these are going to be very challenging...potty training for one. We have tried to potty train him and he refuses profusely! And for Benjamin, we will talk to his doctor at his 15 month appt in July about seeing a physical therapist if needed. For Rebecca I need to find some sort of reading journal or something to make her more interested in reading. Do you mak…

The Spirit of the Heart by Ismael N. Nuno, M.D. (book review)

Book Description (from

As one of America's former leading cardiac surgeons, Dr. Nuño healed patients' hearts. Fixing "broken" hearts gave him a unique and intimate view into the power of the heart. Even coming face to face with death and losing patients, there is a beauty that can exist even in loss. The Spirit of the Heart is a collection of heart-warming stories that resonate at the core of our humanness. He graciously offers the insights he has gained from occupying a front-row seat at some of life's most real and raw moments. These tender stories teach us about what it means to be human, to be connected to others, to love, to live, to forgive. My thoughts: I have to say first off that I loved this book! This is a book full of stories of life, loss, hope, laughter, love, and grief. It is full of stories from renowned cardiac surgeon, Dr. Ismael N. Nuno, M.D. Dr. Nuno writes from his heart. He tells stories of saving his sister's life on …

My Family's Summer Bucket List 2013

Today is the first Monday of our Summer break from school and from my work (as I work in a school). I know that if I am not intentional in doing things with the kids, that the summer could easily turn in an all day, every day cartoon watching fest and that is NOT good.

As I was browsing online, I kept seeing the idea of a "bucket list for summer." Basically it is a list of things that you would like to do/accomplish within the months of summer. It helps you to have some sort of a plan so that you don't end up being TV watching zombies.

So I decided to make bucket list for our family for the summer. I think it will help me be more intentional with the kids and become a better mom!

2013 Summer Family Bucket List Visit the Zoo Wash the car/van by hand with the kids' help Play at the park at least once every 2 weeks Have a picnic on a blanket on the grass Go to Chuck E. Cheese Catholic Kidz Camp for Rebecca (Vacation Bible School) Make Smores in the sun
Pick strawberries Eat l…

Sunday Night Chit Chat

HAPPY SUNDAY!!! It has been a low key, getting stuff done at home kind of a day here. Just what I needed! 
Since it is Sunday, it is time once again for Sunday Night Chit-Chat...hosted by our friend Carla! To play along simply start your post with a photo or quote... Copy and paste the starters and link up to Carla so she and others can visit you and see what you've been up to!

So here goes: Reading? I am currently finishing up "The Spirit of the Heart." Listening to? The kids talking, the TV is on, and Benjamin is crawling around the floor banging on the floor with his toys. Watching? The kids are watching "Bubble Guppies" right now. I have a couple shows on the DVR to watch including "19 Kids and Counting" and "Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition." Cooking/Baking? Haven't really baked anything since it has been HOT and we have been BUSY! I did put together strawberry shortcake tonight for dessert with store made angel food cake, str…