Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Week/Weekend Update! - Dedication.

Hi guys!
Sorry I have been away for about a week! The break was much needed though. I had quite the busy week last week. I had my in laws in town and both of our babes were dedicated at our church on Saturday!
So with all of that going on I had a bunch of prep work to do during the week leading up to the weekend.
Tuesday and Wednesday were cleaning and laundry at night. Mind you all of this was done after 9 pm when the kids were finally in bed and Loren was off fishin'.
You know that whole hunting and gathering thing a boys gotta do. They feel as though they are providing food for the family. He loves it, so I guess if he's happy, I'm happy!

Thursday was actually a nice relaxing day. My sister Justine is headed off to college so all of us girls in the family got together for a little luncheon.
Good Luck J!

Friday was a TON of cooking mixed with some last minute cleaning. Me and the babes hit the grocery store in the morning and then once they were down for a nap I whipped out 2 giant pans of lasagna. Later that night after they were in bed my wonderful hubby finished up the cleaning while I spent the night in the kitchen baking some homemade pies! - 2 apple and 1 blueberry. Nothing like baking to relax my soul! It was nice.

And that was my week... all the prep work was done!
Saturday morning I headed off to work for a couple hours and the in laws got into town. Then later that night was the dedication.

We were so excited to dedicated both our babes in front some of our closes friends and family. Our church has made such a difference in our lives and our relationship with God. We are so thankful and blessed that we found a church like Eaglebrook and we knew that dedicating our children was just one of those things we wanted to do and share because of Eaglebrook.
So Saturday night in front of the congregation we were one of 12 families that dedicated their babes to the Lord that day! And it was a great feeling!

(Sorry for the blurry pictures. My sister was taking them out in the audience. These are the best I have.)

After the dedication service the whole fam headed back to our house to celebrate with a big home cooked meal!
Lasagna, Garlic Bread, Caesar Salad, Pie and Ice cream were on the menu!
And the babes even got a couple gifts!
Tuck didn't care too much about opening his presents... he wanted to eat!

But Greta, she wouldn't eat until she got to open her presents. It's as if presents just call out that child's name! She loves presents!

Later that night, around 11:00, all the excitement of the party finally wore off and Greta (along with her Grandpa) finally fell asleep.

We really did have a super great night! Nothing like a house full of family to celebrate a wonderful day! We feel blessed to raise our children in such a big, loving, family.

So now that my busy week of cooking and cleaning and parties is done... I am hoping to relax a little more this week and most likely let the house go! lol
Well put it this way... no toilets will be scrubbed and no dinners will be made for the next couple of days! This Momma needs a break!

Hope you all had a great week/weekend as well!

Chat soon, (I promise)


Monday, August 16, 2010

Gotta Love Organization!

If you live in Minnesota than you have noticed that our weather cooled down over the weekend.... and boy was it lovely!
There is nothing better than opening up all the windows in your house and letting in the wonderful fresh air. Something about it just makes a home feel fresh and lived in. Usually the only time you can open up all your windows for days at a time is when a season is about to change.... and this is my favorite time!
I love when one season is done and you are slowly transitioning into the next. There is something exciting about it, isn't there?!

Well, over the weekend all the lovely weather and fresh air got me stirring. I worked my second job and we had some other small things on the list like mow the lawn, go to church, etc. So I didn't have a ton of time to tackle a big project but I was a little stir crazy and had to do something! And that's when my laundry room shelf area hit me!

Just look at it... it's a giant MESS!

(part of me can't believe I am showing you this. please don't judge! lol)

It has been like this for months and months, maybe even a whole year! Just a big ole' pile of crap with a tiny little space for us to actually let the shelf serve it's purpose.... to hold laundry room stuff!
I guess I hadn't tackled this random little nook of crap... ahh I mean stuff... because I felt intimidated by it! I felt like it would consume me and take forever and once I pulled everything off the shelf where would I put all the garbage that accumulated and made those piles? I guess my biggest thing was... what would I do with all the stuff???

Well the answer was pretty simple..... throw half of it away and put the other half where it belonged in the first place!

It was mostly random garbage I could part with mixed with some tools, sand paper, paint trays, aldi bags, laundry soaps and detergents, etc.
So, I buckled down and tackled it!

First I cleared everything off the shelf!

To truly tackle a project you have to start with a clean slate don't you agree?! So everything came off and once it did I saw how beat up the cabinet and paint was. So I rolled out some of that cabinet liner (sorry no picture, I was busy people!) and there was my blank slate.

From there I just started going through all the stuff! Making piles of stuff that should have been in the garage. Piles that needed to go in the garbage or in the office. - And after about 20 minutes my piles were done and put in their proper spots. All I was left with was the stuff that really needed to be on that shelf. Stuff that really belonged in the laundry room and needed proper access.

I put the necessities back up on the shelf and this is what I was left with...

BETTER! - but something about it didn't have me smiling and jumping for joy! I didn't like the "lost sock" bin where it was and all that empty space above it looked sad. Honestly... it didn't look pretty to me!

I know, I know, it's just a laundry room some may say! But wait a second! This is where I stand and fold the better half of our million loads of laundry that are washed every week. This is where I stand and spend a decent amount of MY time! So why can't the area I stare at while questioning what better I could be doing with my time, or day dreaming about running away with my hubby look appealing and make me smile?!

Well, it can! - So I started tweaking and came up with this...

See, the difference? Nooooow are you smiling and jumping for joy?! Well I am!

I moved some things around and made the left side of the shelf (the side I stare at while folding) much prettier! The tin cans are just from canned pears... washed and rinsed after Tuck has eaten all the pears! Then I filled one with clothes pins and the other with dryer sheets. Than above it is that new, super cute, little magnetic board!

It started out as an old tin tray! ... I picked a pack of 5 up at the Goodwill awhile back. Marked at $5.00 but since I went on a 50% off day I only paid $2.50 for the pack of five! SCORE!

Pretty huh?! Than I just grabbed some adorable scrapbook paper from my stash, traced it to fit, cut it out, and hot glued it into the center. - covering up those hideous - I mean adorable - roses!

Than I grabbed a roll of jute from my ribbon box and hot glued that onto the back so I could hang the tray.

It doesn't have to be perfect! No one can see the back! And the great thing about a big ole' glob of hot glue.... it can be pealed off when you are done with it!

And so... this little cutie was born!

(click on the picture to enlarge it and see her in all her adorable glory!)

Now I can put pictures of my babes up there or key scriptures handed out at church that week to uplift and inspire me while I am folding the never ending loads of laundry! - and all with the change of a magnet!

So we went from this...

To this...

Nooooow the laundry room looks happy! (well besides the terrible blue and floral paneling which will one day come down!)

Speaking of that? Does anyone have a money tree I could come pick from?! lol

Oh well, you gotta live with what ya' got! And now I can stand being in the laundry room much better!

How about you gals? Did you tackle any projects over the weekend or have you been putting one off because you think it is too big?

Well, hop to it! And here's to finding that extra boost of energy.

Rule of Life #9: "Cleanliness is next to Godliness!"

Hope you all had a great weekend.

Chat later,


Thursday, August 12, 2010

Pool Day!

Oh how I love summer!
We just spent the better part of our day soaking up the sun and swimming in Grandma's pool! It is always a struggle juggling two babes by myself in 4 feet of water... but after a little while we find our groove and the babes find their fins!

Summer is oh-so-fun!

Before you know it fall will be here!

Hope you all are having a great summer day!

Chat later,


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Strawberry Sauce

Remember this post where I made Blueberry Sauce? Well I said I was going to try my hand at Strawberry Sauce and see how that turned out! Well I tried it and it is deee-lish!

I followed the same recipe in the blueberry post.....

1 pint of Strawberries
2/3 C. of Sugar
1 tsp. Almond extract (instead of vanilla)
- something about almond goes better with strawberries than vanilla, but if vanilla is all you have that will work fine as well!

And that's it girls. Just whip all that together in your blender or food processor and vio-la!

This should last about 2 weeks in your refrigerator.

Stir it into plain vanilla yogurt or grab some pound cake, angel food cake, a waffle, or a bowl of ice cream and pour away!

This was our choice last night! Yum-O!!!

It seems to be a pretty big hit around our house! Hope it will be a hit at yours as well!

Chat later,


Looking for something else to do with those strawberries that you didn't eat fast enough and are about to go bad?

Check out this recipe for Strawberry Freezer Jam. Super easy!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

It's The Little Things

There's no denying it.... I am a city girl married to a country boy! Granted he does live in Minnesota now, he has lost the better part of his accent, and he sure knows how to look good when he dresses up....

But underneath all of that, he's still just a hick!

A southern boy who grew up in Missouri workin' on farms and partyin' in fields! A boy that grew up drinkin' iced tea, buckin' bails of hay, and saying "yes mam" and "no sir." - for the most part, he's a real southern gentleman!

He is always so calm and kind hearted. And this morning just proved again why I am the lucky one that got to marry HIM.

Yesterday while I was at work eating my lunch, my boss... which happens to be my grandpa, asked if I wasted my money buying that turkey wrap I was eating?! I said, no. "I didn't buy this... Loren made it for me this morning when he packed my lunch!" To which Gramps replied, "Oh la la, I didn't know Loren could make such fancy wraps. And he even packs your lunch?"

Well this morning when I got out of the shower my sweet little southern boy had packed my lunch again and made me another turkey wrap. But this time there wasn't just one wrap in my lunch bag, there were two. Loren had packed one for me and one for grandpa.
Just one of the many little things my Loren does that makes him so well liked and just plain ole' wonderful!

Not to mention he is an insanely hard worker and is up for just about any project I ask him to tackle.
He is all about the "6 second kiss" our pastor talked about one Sunday back. And he never leaves the house without given me a smooch!
He talks me down when I am worked up and he lets me know that he is proud of me and that I am loved.
And then he does things like tidy up the house last night and whips out 2 loads of laundry while I am at work.... all so I don't have to.

It's no secret that I am blessed to be this country boy's wife.

He sure makes it easy to say yes to midnight cat fishin' trips with my cousin's hubby, Nick.

Guess you gotta let a country boy do what a country boy's gotta do!

Honey, if you're reading this.... this post is for you! I love your stinkin' guts!!!!

Here's to being totally smitten with your spouse! - Now if you're reading this.... go give them that big ole' 6 second smooch I mentioned!

Chat later,
Are you just like me and can't get enough of Loren?! Haha!
Well if that's true... check out other posts about my honey, here, and here.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Things That Make Me Happy...

.... Babes that wake up from their naps happy!
Well atleast one of them woke up happy! - G seemed to "need a minute!"

Ahhh, nap times make this Mommy feel refreshed!
Although lately it seems as though we are going through a stage with Mr. Tuck.
All he wants to do is be held... but not just held by any ole' person! He wants to be held by yours truly... ME! Constantly!

Now that he is walking he is quite the handful. He likes to get into things and cause more trouble... but this constant holding thing is wearing me down!

I guess I shouldn't be complaining! If anything I should feel flattered right?! I have a wonderful, healthy, little boy that loves me to no end! However, sometimes this Momma just needs a break.

Oh well, just like every other stage.... this season in our lives will pass and Tuck will hopefully grow out of this funk! - Till then, I better start lifting weights to bulk up my arms! This child is by no means "tiny" for his age!

Tuck, if your Daddy is reading this to you....

Mommy loves you but at some points during the day I am going to have to put you down. There are meals to be made and underwear to fold! Oh, and every now and then Mommy needs a potty break! - And no I will not hold you on my lap while I am going potty!

But never the less... I love you ... you little stinker!
Any of you Momma's go through a stage like this? Got any tips, tricks, words of advice or encouragment? Let me know!

Now if you'll excuse me.... I have a hot date tonight with the insanely handsome Mr. Appleberry!

Chat later,


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Woes of a Workin' Mom

This morning we woke up late and the chaos level was through the roof!
We were running around and rushing about trying to get 2 babes changed, fed, and dressed. Along with pack their diaper bag for Grammy's house, pack our lunches, and get ourselves dressed, showered, and ready to walk out the door.
Wheew! On a regular day when we wake up "on time" this is a lot... but waking up late and trying to get it all done is almost impossible!

When we finally did get out the door and I got the babes to Grams... Greta clung on to me tight and didn't want to let go. If you are a mother, you know that is the worst possible moment for you... when you know you have to leave even though you don't want to... and your baby is just hoping you'll stay.

It just about brings tears to my eyes even writing about it. I hate when G does that to me but I know she doesn't mean to make me feel guilty... how can she? She's two and has no idea what guilt is! But it just about breaks this Momma's heart when her baby girl is clinging to her and just wanting her to stay and spend the day with her.

Now I know I am blessed because we only have to do this work song and dance Monday - Wednesday... so I am not gonna complain too bad! I know some Mom's have no other choice but to work full time, 5 days a week. But gosh... this working Mom thing.... it's hard isn't it?!

As I sit here at work today I can't help but feel a couple different emotions....

1.) Bummed that I have to work at all! Bummed that we desperately need my income to make ends meet. Bummed that I miss entire full days of my children's lives. Bummed that when I do have days with them that I don't fully utilize my time! Bummed that I try and juggle cleaning house and doing laundry when I really just want to let the house go to shambles and spend the whole day with the babes. Bummed that if and when I have days like that the next day is all about "catching up."
2.) I vow that I am going to start getting up earlier and making my mornings... the morning of my babes... go smoother! There is nothing that gets a day off to a terrible start than a terrible morning. When we have one of "those" mornings around our house I feel like it is already lunch time and I am still feeling all that stress and trying to shake off the morning.

Why is it that mornings are so hard for me?!
Well I think I know the majority of the problem.... I go to bed too late!
I would say on any given night Loren and I don't go to bed till between midnight - 1 o'clock. We get Tuck in bed at 8:00 then we spend time with Greta until we put her to bed at 9:00. Then when the house is finally quiet at about 9:30.... Loren and I either need to do some dishes or laundry, or are feeling crafty and want to tackle a little project, or are so tired and drained of energy that we just want to veg out on the couch in front of the tv.
Regardless of what we are doing... we are just trying to squeeze in "me time" or a little "us time" and late nights are the only time we can do that. However, late nights lead to late, busy, stressful mornings and I really need this to stop!

Got any suggestions?
Do you gals get up with enough time or dare I say EARLY?! And if so... how do you do it?!
Or are you like me and sleep till the last minute only to be stressed the minute your feet hit the floor?

Well, whatever the case.... starting tomorrow I am really going to try and nip this in the bud. And as for being a working Mom... that's not gonna change anytime soon... guess I just needed to vent. - Sorry you gals were here to read about it! lol

But the good news about venting via blogging is.... all of this is documented. The good, the bad, the ugly. So one day - if and when Greta is old enough to read her Mommy's blog - she will know that she was loved. She will know that Mommy shed a tear when I had to drive away and leave her behind while I went to work. She will know that I struggled and tried my best to give her things and spend time with her. She will know I did my very best (or what I knew to be best) to be a good wife, friend, sister, and mother. I like that she will get to know and hear different sides of me. Different sides to being a wife and mother.... because trust me, when I was younger I couldn't wait to grow up! I thought being a mom and a wife was the cats meow! And trust me.... the majority of time... it sooooooo is! But sometimes the stress and guilt just about consumes you!

But this is life and I said in the beginning that I would blog about Parenting, Homemaking, Cooking, Crafting, Entertaining, and LIFE. - The good, the bad, and the ugly right?!

But for the record... I am so blessed! And even though certain days are tough, I remember this quote...

"All of my life, in every season, you are still God, I have a reason to sing, I have a reason to worship."

Hears to a better today and a brighter tomorrow! - hope I didn't bring anyone else down! lol

Oh... wondering why it's so hard to leave Ms. G? .......

She's funny...

She likes to try on her winter boots in August so she can be prepared for all the snow!

She's playful....

......... and she is the cutest, sweetest thing, that has ever graced my life.

I love you Greta Janel Appleberry!

Chat later,


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