Thursday, May 28, 2009

Giveaways galore!

The blog Sew, Mama, Sew! is in the midst of their Giveaway Days...tons of blogs giving away craft-related and handmade stuff. The giveaway lists are separated according to category, so you can see the list of knitting stuff/fabric stuff etc...or enter them all. I've entered a lot of this post will work for any of the giveaway-ers to leave a comment to let me know if I won (oh please, oh please!)!!! :)

Yard sale treasures

First of all, you can go here to see my mom's account of the rest of today's adventures. The best part of the yard sale we stopped at was getting my mom to not only visit it with me, but to buy something, too -- she's usually a yard-sale spoil-sport!! :) Below are my treasures from today's yard sale... A matched set of these pretty pewter-look candle stands. I originally thought I'd spray them bronze to go in my kitchen (which is bronze/plum and Mediterranean-grape themed), but they'd look nice on my mantel, too, so we'll see...A pretty little side table (the top is real marble/granite). Perfect to sit beside our recliner.And last but not least, some fold-up chairs for the kids. They have long envied mine and Bruce's because they fold up and have bags. Happiness is.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Mission complete!

We have completed our 2008-09 school year!!!
David has been promoted to second grade, and Abigail has been promoted to Kindergarten. Great job, kids! We love you!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Old man alert :)

Happy 35th birthday, dear husband of mine... I love you more than words can express, and I am so thankful to have you in my life!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Reinforcements are on the way

I've been sick, with some complications... my parents just called to say that my mom would like to come up and help me get my head above water again... I'm speechless. 'Thank you' seems a little inadequate sometimes.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Kid moments

Last week the kids used an old TV box to build a police car that also served as a fort, a boat, and I don't know what all else during the course of the few days they played in it. I know I've said it many times before -- and I'm sure I'll say it again! -- I LOVE their imagination!!!David continues to be bitten by the reading what to do when it's bedtime after you finish your snack, but you finish your snack before you're done with your book? Hide under the table to read quietly, of course!

In the yard...

Here's a springtime tour around our yard...
We have a few towering trees out back -- we found out this year that they are commonly known as tulip poplars, although they are not actually poplars, but part of the magnolia family -- they are loaded with these blossoms in the spring. Not only are they pretty, but they also have a honeysuckle-ish smell -- the whole yard is perfumed with their scent when the breeze blows in the right direction. This year's blooming is the most prolific one we've seen yet (this is our sixth spring in Georgia).Here's a big, beautiful bloom on my peony. Peonies are some of my favorite flowers anyway, but this is an especially-special plant since it came from my Grandma Minota's garden (Grandma was a gifted gardener -- the kind that could take a twig, stick it in the ground, and make it grow -- she died in September 1997, so she wasn't there to see us get married in June 1998...but my aunt dug up several of Grandma's plants for me and it's a very special thing to have some of Grandma's plants in my garden!).Also transplanted from her garden to mine, a Bleeding Heart. Last year it looked pretty peaked, but this year it's thriving! This is the last of our Lily of the Valley for this season -- they are transplants my parents brought me several years ago from their farm in NY and they smell heavenly...I love that they bloom just in time for my birthday every year!New flowers/plants at the base of the birdbathA new Clematis...hopefully it will cooperate and climb up the retaining wall at the bottom of our driveway!I chose this lovely Calla Lily plant for my Mother's Day giftThe roses out front are loaded with blossoms
Replanted pots on my front porch stepsA close-up of my front porch potMy herb garden...the white lavender is just starting to bloom, the amaryllis is almost ready to open, the climbing rose is magnificent (the picture doesn't do it justice), the mint is conquered for now...! I am looking forward to summer mornings spent puttering in my gardens!

Mother's Day weekend

Last Friday night was a Mother's Day banquet at our church. The theme was "The Hats Women Wear", so after much deliberation, we decided to wear princess crowns together. Abigail (like most other little girls) is fascinated by princesses, so lately we have been teaching her about how it's fun to be pretty on the outside, but God says it's more important that He makes our hearts beautiful...and since our Heavenly Father is the King of kings, that means we are His it seemed appropriate that we combine our spiritual lessons with our fun theme...hence our princess crowns! (matching skirts by my mom)Saturday we all went to Lowe's together and I used my birthday money to buy plants and flowers for around the house. When we got home, Bruce finished tilling the garden, David did some repair work on a couple of holes the dumb dog had dug, and I worked on planting my new stuff (pictures to follow in a separate post). Then we planted the garden together. This was the first year that Abigail was really "into" planting the garden, which was really exciting to see!
Planting okra (by special request!)
After church on Sunday we used the gift card my grandparents had given us for Christmas and went out to dinner at Olive Garden (Ravioli Portobello with white sauce for me -- yum!!!), then spent a leisurely afternoon/evening together (our pastor canceled evening services so that everyone could have extra family time).
My mom made us these coordinating outfits -- thanks, Mom! -- David was so excited to match the girls and I am going to enjoy that as long as I possibly can, since the days for that are probably numbered! (notice the silk , too!)
Me and my dear husband...I am so thankful to be his wife and the mother of his children!

Adventures in blah-land...

Well, I hadn't planned to disappear from blog-land this past week, but after a week and a half of ignoring the fact that I wasn't feeling well, by Wednesday morning I was sick enough to go to the dr and was diagnosed with a bacterial intestinal infection that had spread to my kidneys. I've spent the last three days on antibiotics and anti-nausea meds, getting lots of sleep, and adhering to a clear-liquid diet (yuck!!!). I was able to start eating toast and rice (not together) last night, and this morning I tried some cereal...hopefully I'm on the upswing now. I told Caleb that I was just jealous of all the attention he was getting! :) Since I am under strict instruction from my husband not to try being superwoman today, I figured updating the blog was a good task to accomplish. :)

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Caleb updates

I have been updating my original post about Caleb but I don't think the updates show up on Google for those of you interested, please check out the original blog post. Thanks for praying!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Prayer request...and updates

Update Tuesday morning -- Caleb had a decent night; he was in a lot pain after they changed his wound dressing this morning, but is now doped up on morphine and sleeping. He is supposed to be released today, so my mom will be taking him home to his apartment and staying for a few days to take care of him. The doctors had been concerned that, due to the infection spreading, they were going to have to remove part of his large intestine, but (thank the Lord) they were able to leave it intact. He has a three-inch scar and no more appendix, but he should be good to go in a few weeks! ~~~~~~~~~~ Update Monday late afternoon -- Caleb is out of surgery. Praise the Lord. Details to come later... ~~~~~~~~~~ Update Monday mid-afternoon -- Caleb is finally in surgery (the wait was for a very good reason - sadly for someone's family, but happily for someone else's, a heart became available last night shortly before Caleb would have gone into surgery - the heart transplant requires a bunch of personnel and a long time, so other surgeries, including Caleb's, needed to be delayed for a while). He asked the doc if he would be able to play basketball on Friday - ha, ha! Thanks for continuing to pray. ~~~~~~~~~~ Update Monday 8:00 a.m. -- Caleb is still waiting to go into mom is with him now, at least...he is in a huge amount of pain...big sister thinks it makes sense for them to get the show on the road and get that appendix out of there BEFORE it bursts...grrr! ~~~~~~~~~~ youngest brother Caleb is headed into surgery for appendicitis...thank you for praying...

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to our moms/grandmas... we love you all very much!Thanks to my mom for our fun matching outfits! (...and I wore my silk that RaDora brought me from India, too!)

Thursday, May 07, 2009

Postage hike

Don't forget that the cost of postage is going up again -- by 2 cents -- on Monday, May 11th.
In the meantime, save a little money by purchasing the "Forever" stamps, which will still be good even after the rate hike.

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

My birthday pictures

My birthday was lovely...thanks for all of the birthday wishes!
My best gift of the day was that Bruce left work early and had an extra two hours to spend with us! It was wonderful. I also thoroughly enjoyed my birthday dinner (filet mignon, sauteed mushrooms, asparagus, wild rice, Italian bread). Note the marvelously-decorated dining room...the kids were dismayed that I hadn't decorated with anything other than the "happy birthday" sign, so they went to the basement, dug out the streamers, colored pictures, and then decorated all by themselves. It was so precious!!!
...and with my birthday dessert -- Raspberry Crumble Bars! (they were delicious despite the fact that I dumped almost 1/2 cup of sugar on my feet and then, in the melee, forgot to mix more sugar with the raspberries...typical!!!)(...don't knock my hair...I got caught in the rain and wasn't about to spend time re-doing it just for pictures!!!)

KFC deal / Walgreens deal

Hi all...a quick post to let you know about a great KFC deal, if you haven't already heard about it. (No, I didn't hear about it on Oprah, so no smart-aleck comments are necessary. :) I heard about both of these deals on the Spend Freely blog.)
Kentucky Grilled Chicken Get two pieces of grilled chicken, two individual sides and a biscuit!
Click here to get your coupon (you can print up to four coupons, but only through today...make sure you print out four different coupons with four different numbers!).
Also today, you can get a free 8x10 photo from your local Walgreens...just upload your photo and then use the coupon code "MOTHER". Today only!

Monday, May 04, 2009

It's that one day of the year again...

...when I make a birthday wish on my blog.
The rest of the year, the blog is for you... but today I ask you once again to humor me! If you have a minute and are willing to play along, please leave me a comment so I can see who "visits" me today! :) Last year I had 16 "visits"... the year before I had eight... so this year should be 32, right?! :) Thank you for humoring me on my 32nd birthday... and my love to all of family, friends, and blog-friends!

My birthday praise

"O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; My soul thirsts for You... Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You. So I will bless You as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name." ~Psalm 63

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Random pictures from the last couple of weeks

Here's a picture from last Sunday of Abigail looking like Ingeborg (a character in one of my favorite book series!).~
At our puppet show field trip, Bruce looked up and noticed something fun on one of the puppets hanging from the ceiling...Can you see it? Here's a close up...Considering our interest in Sherwin-Williams, we were delighted to see evidence of its use at the Puppetry Center...and we couldn't resist the plug for our favorite paint! :) ~
While we were in Florida for our Minota family vacation, my sister-in-law Krystle gave me a French manicure/pedicure. :) I've gotten several compliments on the cool silver sparkles! The manicure is long gone, but the pedicure still looks pretty good! Here are my feet at the Gulf beach the other day...

Butterfly Rainforest field trip

On Friday, we packed up, loaded the van, met Matthew for lunch, then went on a field trip to the University of Florida's Florida Museum of Natural History. The museum itself was very nice and we enjoyed a lot of exhibits about Florida's wildlife, the Everglades, Florida's Indians and related artifacts, etc.
The kids in front of Great White Shark teeth
Without a doubt, though, the highlight of the field trip was the Butterfly Rainforest. It was a big atrium-like structure full of tropical plants, a stream, and waterfalls, with a winding path and park benches throughout. Flying free were approximately two thousand butterflies from all over the world. It was truly magnificent. This turned out to be rather a magnum-opus field trip for us since we studied butterflies earlier in the year, so we were able to, in a fun way, review the scientific classification and anatomy of order Lepidoptera. Besides that, it was absolutely, stunningly, beautiful...we were all in awe and spent almost two hours wandering and observing...WOW!!!
We were sad to leave the butterflies, but happy to be headed to Caleb's house for the night! :) We enjoyed dinner and the evening with him, then headed for home Saturday morning.

Our day at the Gulf of Mexico

On Wednesday we made an impromptu trip to the Gulf of Mexico (both Matthew & Caleb have Wed/Thursdays off, so Caleb drove down to be with us). The kids had never seen it before, and this particular beach was only an hour away from Matthew's house, so off we went. We had a wonderful day together!!!

Friday, May 01, 2009

Happy anniversary

Happy 33rd anniversary
to my parents!
We love you and hope you enjoy your anniversary celebration
at the beach...enjoy the sand in lieu of apple blossoms...! :)

Unexpected trip south

This post is from Florida...yes, Florida again, but not for the fun of it this time! On Saturday, our friend's mom passed away and Sunday night Bruce and I decided that I would go to Florida for the funeral (my heart is so heavy for our friends in the midst of their loss, but at the same time rejoicing over the godly testimony of their mom, who has gone home to be with the Lord she loved so much) Tuesday afternoon the kids and I arrived at my brother Matthew's, yesterday was the funeral, today we head a little over an hour north to Caleb's, and tomorrow we'll drive home. Although the main purpose of this trip wasn't fun and family, we have nonetheless managed to squeeze some enjoyable times into the last couple of days (pictures to follow once I get home, since I forgot to bring my camera cord with me). This trip has felt rather strange for me...a jumble of conflicting emotions...what a strange last few weeks this has been...but then, do we ever do 'normal'?! :)