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Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Beautiful Girls

These are some pictures we had taken while we were at the beach in June.  Aren't they beautiful?



Charissa actually pulled Verity the whole way home in this wagon.  It wasn't just a posed picture.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Sorry Folks!

So my very good (and helpful) friend Samantha let me know that the link I posted to my Flowers of Verity blog wasn't working.  And that's because I didn't do the link right.  So for the other 3 of you that want to see it you can go to Flowers of Verity (flowersofverity.blogspot.com) and see what's going on there.  

Sorry for the confusion!

Don't Be Jealous Nathan

I went out to get the mail today and this is what I saw:

Charissa and I watched them through the window for a long time this afternoon.  We thought of our friend Nathan and knew that if he was in town he would have been loving the new addition to our yard.  

Tuesday Tip - An Easy, Mess-Free Way to Dust Ceiling Fans

I really don't like to dust my ceiling fans.  It seems that more dust gets knocked to the ground and on my head or on my bed than gets on my dust cloth.  So it just turns into a sneezy, messy affair.  But I ran across an easy way to dust the blades without all the mess!  Simply use an old pillow case and slip it around the blades one at a time and wipe them off.  The dust goes in the pillow case and not anywhere else.  Then all you have to do is take the pillow case outside, turn it inside-out and shake the dust out when you're all done.  

Clean fans without the mess!  Now all you have to do is muster the desire to go do it.  :)

Monday, July 27, 2009

Britt's Seminary Completion Party

This weekend we had a party to celebrate the fact that Britt finished seminary.  To be honest, I don't think a party is enough for all the work he did - I wanted fireworks and spontaneous choreographed singing and dancing focusing on his diligent work and sacrifice.  Since that wasn't an option, we had hotdogs instead.  But it was pretty fun. 

I made little tank tops for the girls that said "I love you" in Greek and Hebrew (Greek for Charissa, Hebrew for Verity).  
We had LOTS of people show up for the party ...

... and lots of cars.
We went through over 80 hotdogs that night! One friend even showed us how to eat when your hands are full of children.
A certain baby bundle couldn't handle all the fun and she conked out about halfway through it.  It's funny to me that Verity can still fall asleep anywhere.  (And I know my mom looks kind of sad or worried in this picture, but she really was having fun.)
The kids were enjoying some basketball, even though most of them couldn't reach the goal.  

It was a great night for us just to relax and celebrate 6 years of hard work, sacrifice, commitment and faithfulness.  Now on to the next challenge!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

She's Really One of Us

If you asked Britt what his favorite meal was, he would probably say "Rice & Beans."  That man is ridiculously easy to please.  He loves rice and beans.  White rice and black beans.  Oh he'll mix it up a little and add salsa, or cheese, or Texas Pete, or a pepper, or corn, or whatever else he can scrounge up, but basically it's still just rice and beans.  He'll eat that everyday for lunch.  Every day.  And then wonder of wonders - Charissa likes it too!  She started off with the cheese and black bean quesadilla, but now she's on to just eating plain black beans cold for lunch.  I offer sandwiches and other things, but she prefers beans.  And since there is so much lovely protein in them, I just let her chomp away.

So now it's Verity's turn at black beans.  Our pediatrician recommended feeding her more proteins because she's so hungry all the time.  I know there are all sorts of pureed meats, but I just can't bear the smell of them.  Beans will have to do.  This week I made up a batch of pureed black beans and rice (a complete protein) for Verity and let her have her first taste of it.  Do you think she likes it?


She ate every last bit of it up and then wanted more!  She is definitely her daddy's child.

I am so thankful for my family that is easy to please!  They are such a blessing to me.  

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Sweet Sisters

I don't know if two girls could be any sweeter.

Friday, July 24, 2009

He's Done With Seminary!

Britt finished his last course in seminary last week!  We had a little celebration on Thursday when he came home from class.  




I thought it would be fun to decorate the car for Britt as well.  




It's hard to believe that we're all done with seminary.  It's been a constant part of Britt's life ever since I've known him.  But I couldn't be happier.  No more classes, no more papers, no more nights away from the family.  

Now we just have to find a job ...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I Love Two-Year-Olds!

Two-year-olds are full of boundless energy and crazy sayings.  Life is always crazy, but usually fun.  Sometimes when we have people over and Charissa is running around crazy and Verity is squealing and the noise is so great that conversation is hard, I look at our guests and say, "I'd like to say that they're acting up for your benefit, but this is just our life."  

My friend Dana once made a list of things you could hear her saying throughout the week.  Things like "Don't play the piano with your gun" and "Don't wear a blindfold down the stairs."  Well I think I'm going to start my own list.  Last night you could have heard me saying, "Charissa, don't ride your sister.  She's not a horse."  Poor Verity.  So long suffering.  Actually, I think Verity enjoys her sister's company so much that she doesn't care what they do. 

And another joy of two-year olds is that they are a wealth of knowledge and wisdom.  They know everything!  Like tonight we were talking before dinner and Charissa was very excited about her chocolate milk and we were talking about how it comes from "cow milk."  She then got very serious and said, "Cow's milk is hot dogs."  ??????  What is that about?  Totally bizarre.  

She keeps me laughing that's for sure.  

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tuesday Tip - How to Check for Rotten Eggs

Just a quick tip for you guys this week - but it can be very helpful.  

We don't eat a lot of eggs in our house since Charissa and I don't really care for them.  That means that a dozen eggs can sit in our refrigerator for a long time.  So how do you know if an egg is still good?  It's not like it goes brown around the edges or gets soft.  The way to tell if an egg has gone bad is to see if it floats in water.  Isn't that cool?  Just put the eggs in a large bowl of water and see if they sink or swim.  The swimmers get tossed.  

Simple, but helpful. :)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Visiting my Grandparents

This week we are in Kentucky staying with my grandparents while Britt takes his last class of seminary (YAY! YAY! YAY!).  It's so nice to be with them while Britt is having to work so hard this week.  The girls love playing with Pop and Granny and there are plenty of things for them to do here.  My grandparents live on a farm, so Charissa and I have been taking long walks out in fields and having so much fun just walking around and talking.  

Here are some pictures:
My grandparents house.
The front yard
A couple of the barns
Charissa and Verity love playing out on the glassed-in porch.
My grandparents have a golf-cart type thing to drive around their property.  At this particular instance they were using it to sit on while they bubbles.
We filled up a pool most afternoons and let the girls go swimming.  They loved that!
CJ loved seeing goats and chickens while we were here.  
 

We'll be here until Friday, but Britt is done with this class tomorrow.  Pray that he perseveres through this final day!  And that the girls let him sleep tonight so he is rested!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tuesday Tip - A Year of Real Simple

I really enjoy reading Real Simple Magazine, but I don't often get it.  Well that's going to change!  Amazon is having a sale and you can get a year's subscription for $5!  FIVE DOLLARS!  Ridiculous!  

The sale is until July 18th so get it while you can!

Monday, July 13, 2009

It's Finally Started!

I finally started a blog for all my creative ventures.  You can go to Flowers of Verity to keep up with all the things that I've been making.  I'm going to be cutting down on the crafts and projects that I usually post on here and start posting them over there.  It's called separation of crafts and family.  :)  

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Our Week In Review

I know I meant to blog earlier this week, but it just didn't happen.  We've been crazy busy.  So I thought I would just do a little pictorial review of our week:

Charissa had a friend over and they played lots of dress-up.
Verity had a moment of unsupervised time near a dinner roll and she tore it up/devoured it.
A beautiful stray kitten has claimed us as her family.
Verity learned about the greatness that is Steak 'n' Shake.
And Charissa discovered that she can fit inside the sink at her play kitchen.
As always, it's been a fun/crazy/bizarre/laughter-filled week.  

Sunday, July 05, 2009

More Coming Soon ...

Sorry for the extremely long absence!  There has been a LOT going on here.  I will go into further details in my next posts (including some exciting news!).  

I wanted to let everyone know that I am disabling the ability for people to leave anonymous comments.  I've been going back and forth about this for a long time, but I finally decided that I need to go ahead and do it.  It's not that I don't love to hear from you all, but sometimes people misuse anonymity.  Thus comes the change.  I do hope that most of you continue to keep commenting though!  

Hopefully you will hear more from me soon!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

A Glorious Moment

Yesterday I was going to the girls' room to get them up in the morning when I heard Charissa singing.  I paused for a minute to listen and realized that she was singing "Only Jesus" and then when I peeked around the corner I saw that she was sitting on the floor with her Bible out!  How precious is that!  She was having her morning devotions!

Man I love that kid!  

More on Freezing

I read an article about freezing foods by Mark Bittman from the NY Times and I thought it was a good, clarifying piece.  

Enjoy reading!  

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Tuesday Tip - Declutter One Shelf at a Time

Do you ever walk through your house and see things where they don't belong or open a closet and see piles leaning against each other?  But of course you don't have the time to take everything out of the closet and get everything organized right then.  But that doesn't mean we have to give up and decide to live with the clutter.  

I wrote a while ago about making a habit of a clean home, and today I wanted to expand on that a little bit.  Basically it's the idea of capturing those 5 minute opportunities that you do have and cleaning up one shelf or one cabinet.  Sure you won't have your home clean in a weekend, but if you make this a habit as well, then maybe things won't pile up.  And we all have 5 minute opportunities all throughout our day.  When we're on the phone, when we're waiting for the water to boil, while Daddy is bathing the kids, when the girls sleep a bit longer than we planned ... there are so many windows of time we can use, we just have to be diligent to use them.  

While I was thinking about this post I was reminded of a quote I first heard from "The Richest Cat in the World" (definitely a movie I loved in my childhood).  Anyway, it goes, "Inch by inch, life's a cinch.  Yard by Yard, it's very hard."  It makes sense.  

So in the last week I have stolen 5 minutes along my day and I've been able to straighten up my linen closet, hall closet, study closet, and the girls' closet.  It has also been helpful for me to have boxes ready that I can put things in to give away and to throw out.  

Nothing too dramatic this week, but sometimes we all need little tips to help us.  

Thursday, June 04, 2009

A Great Moment of Irony

The other night I went into the study to ask Britt if he wanted some ice cream while he was reading.  When he said he did, I started to leave the room to go get, but then I popped back in to ask him if he wanted any milk.  This is how our conversation went:

Me:  Britt, do you want any milk?
Britt:
Me: Britt? Milk?
Britt:
Me: Britt!
Britt: Oh sorry ... I was reading an article about having better communication with your wife.

It doesn't get funnier than that.  

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

An Accident Waiting to Happen ... Literally

Last night I was getting Verity changed into her PJs after her bath and we were having the best time giggling and smiling at each other.  When she was all ready I picked her up and snuggled her, when it occurred to me that she felt a little weird.  With a little further inspection I realized that I had never put a diaper on her!  

So glad I caught it then and not in the morning!

More Pictures from Memorial Day Weekend

My mom sent me some pictures of the girls from our trip to see them and I couldn't resist sharing!  

Look at Verity!  She smiles!
Right before we left my mom found this sombrero and got Charissa to put it on.  It's ridiculously large.  It was also ridiculous how my mom tried to pawn it off on us.  Nice try Nana.

Love those girls!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Crazy Eights

My friend Nicole tagged me to do this, so here I go:

8 Things I am Looking Forward to:
  1. Britt finishing seminary this summer!
  2. Starting my own etsy shop (it's tentative - we'll see how it goes)
  3. Starting Beth Moore's Esther study
  4. One day being an aunt
  5. My two little girls being best friends
  6. Seeing where God is going to take us this summer
  7. Grilling out all summer on our new grill
  8. New Moon the movie :)

8 Things I Did Yesterday:
  1. Cleaned my house
  2. Laundry
  3. Ran errands at Target & Michaels
  4. Cooked with bamboo shoots for the first time (yummy!)
  5. Tended to two small children all day
  6. Watched 1/2 an episode of Star Trek (further details coming)
  7. Played on the floor with the girls
  8. Crashed in bed exhausted!

8 Things I Wish I Could Do:
  1. Sleep uninterrupted through the night!
  2. Spend more time sewing
  3. See my friend Rachel
  4. Be able to always rest in God's sovereignty
  5. Be a better mother
  6. Be a better wife
  7. Be an aunt
  8. Paint ... with skill

8 Shows I Watch:
  1. Bones
  2. House
  3. Lost
  4. The Office
  5. Friends
  6. Castle
  7. Lie to Me
  8. That's all I can think of ... and that should be more than enough!

I don't know who to tag, so if anyone wants to do this they can!  

I Need Some Inspiration ...

I sat at my computer today and tried to think of something to share.  I have some things in the works and I have a file of ideas I could post, but nothing screamed "share me today!"  So I decided to go into a different direction by asking for a Tuesday Tip.  

Does anyone have a great idea they would love to share?

Monday, June 01, 2009

Does Anyone Else's Monday Look Like This?

Today I opted not to fold as I went, so it kind of piled up.  Quite literally.  But I don't mind folding laundry.  Usually as a treat to myself I'll listen to a sermon or watch something.  It makes the task very pleasant.  

Hope everyone else is enjoying Laundry Monday!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Idbids!

A few weeks ago Repurposeful did a giveaway for Idbids - something I hadn't heard of before.  But as I read the description, I really wanted to win.  There are three Idbid characters (Scout, Lola, and Waverly) who teach children how to keep the earth safe and green one iddy biddy step at a time.  It's wonderful because they help teach concepts of conservation and pollution and give examples of reachable goals that children can do to help the environment.  So I decided to enter the contest - and I won!  I think this is the first time I've won anything since 5th grade when I won a CD player from McDonald's ... and I only won that because my brother entered me in since he was too old.  

So we're very excited to have Waverly the Idbid in our home.  We've been playing with him this week and reading the book and talking about what it means to conserve water.  I think Idbids would make a great birthday gift or Christmas gift for the child who really doesn't need just another toy.  

Here are a few action shots of Charissa and Waverly:

She doesn't look it, but she was very excited to open the box.
We were talking about how rain drops fall down from the sky, so Charissa ran over to her stool and tried to throw Waverly back up into the sky.  She's so stinking cute!
Our happy new friend.

Definitely check out their website. Even if you don't buy an Idbid there are lots of cool things to do there.  

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday Tip - Impromptu Bib Clips

Even though I've become accustomed to traveling with a humongous bags attached to me with all sorts of things for the girls, I always seem to be without a bib at restaurants.  It's so frustrating.  But last week I found a solution!  I would link to it, but I don't remember where I found it.  Anyway - you just take ribbon and 2 binder clips and make it into something like you get at the dentist.  That way you can just stow it in your bag and use a napkin when you're out.  Added bonus - you don't have to cart home a dirty, wet bib in your diaper bag.  Yay!  

Here's how to do it:

1.  Get some ribbon and 2 binder clips.

2.  Sew each end to one of the loops on the binder clip.  I did this on my machine, but it would probably be easier to do by hand.  


And that's it!  What a brilliant solution.  I can't wait to use it on Sunday.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Splish Splash Fun

Warm weather is upon us so it's time to get out the swimming pool!  And not only the pool, but the Slip 'n' Slide!  
Verity opted to rest in the shade on a towel rather than getting splashed by her big sister.
Charissa even remembered to use her water wisely - recycling her pool water to feed the plants.
She's shocked and amazed that the water is squirting up at her.  She loved the Slip 'n' Slide, but she kept slipping on accident and never on purpose.
I think Britt is a little too big for the Slip 'n' Slide. 

Lately we've been able to have a lot of really fun family time.  It has been so wonderful.  I love to be with my husband and my girls and just enjoy each others' company.  Which isn't hard to do when everyone seems to either be a silly goose or have on silly pants.  At least according to Miss Charissa.