New Traditions

My mom gave me this book a year ago, and like most great things for some reason I didn't pick it up and read it just then... instead it's taken me a whole year to dive in. I DO believe that God has perfect timing and it's so fresh on my heart to try and integrate Him in everything that we do... which is sooo hard to do these days. Ever since these verses in Deuteronomy became alive to Bry and I "Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates." We are striving to find ways to let the rue heritage of Christ be what we pass on to our children, not something that collects dust in the attic for generations.

Against our best efforts here comes Santa Clause right down Santa Clause lane and there are all kinds of other things to draw my child's eye from the single lit star above the manger. How unappealing a baby in a wooden box looks in lieu of lights of the houses with yards full of blown up blimp sized icons of our time. Part of me wants to think it's silly and it's nothing to fight for and it's just something to join in on, but I can't rest at night without this aching in my heart telling me to fight for truth in that little star. And to take the time to tell my little wide eyed girl, face aglow in the tree light, WHY we do what we do and to impress upon her the oddity that is SHE getting gifts, when it's really Jesus' birthday. You may be thinking "she's only two, what's the rust" or "so does this mean you won't give gifts or talk about Santa?" All this is irrelevant if the focus comes from to give or not to give, to Santa or not to Santa.

A haunting question came to me from the pages of this book I mentioned earlier....the one my mom gave to ME a Christmas ago (it's not my birthday either) it asks : "What do your greatest treasure, what is most precious to me? How do I express that treasure in my life? How do I pass that on to my children and those in my circle? Christ IS our greatest treasure... and we have to find creative and appealing ways to pass THIS inheritance on to our little followers who are trying to take it all in and find out what it's all about. If I truly believe that this time of year is most precious to me because of the promise that was being fulfilled in Christ being born, the gifts that we give to honor Him, the joy and the wonder...loving God, loving others, then I am going to fight fervently to make that known to my children more than a fat man in a red suit who comes to give them everything their hearts' desire. We are going to start traditions that honor God over the other, even if she wakes on Christmas morning with stockings full of presents, she will know it's really Jesus' birthday, and what He wants most is her heart.


My Hot date with a Crock Pot!

I had just gone to the store, ran errands, picked up a package, come from the court house standing in the longest line known to man for a speeding ticket, unloaded the groceries, put them in the respected place, moved a sleeping child from the car to the bed, fed the dog and looked at the clock realizing I had yet to eat lunch. So I make myself a lunch, take out the trash, throw a load of laundry on... NOW it's 3:00 and I NEED to find something to think about cooking for dinner to be ready by 6:30! What to do, what to do...

AHA! I realize that I bought some pork ribs at the store bc they were on sale for only $2.50! So the Sandra Lee in me thinks what can I throw together in my pantry that will make this a meal for a hungry hubby who hasnt eaten a home cooked meal in two weeks... (since we were out of town for the holiday)
I turn on the Crock Pot and here is what I find, feel free to try it one cold night when you need a no fuss meal, quick and easy... by quick I mean, prep bc it actually takes 3 1/2 hrs to cook in the clow cooker, but SO easy!

Pork Ribs and Roasted Veggies

1 rack of pork ribs (pre seasoned with a rub or you can season on your own)
1 pkg of brown gravy mix ( I used Pioneer Brand Fat Free Brown gravy mix)
1 1/2 cups of water
4 to 5 large new potatoes sliced in wedges
1 cup of mini carrots (whole)
Slt/P - to taste
*any other seasonings you like with your meat, I used lowerys season salt and onion salt and some fresh thyme -to taste

Place carrots and potatoes in bottom of crock pot then top with the ribs, pour gravy mixed with the water over top and cover. Cook on High for 3 1/2 hrs. You will have a full meal with pork falling off the bone! And enough left overs to send your honey to work with a hot lunch :)



what-cha thinkin bout?

Kehnley always asks me this question... lately it's answer is harder to find because there is always so much running through this head of mine. At thirty weeks pregnant I am mostly thinking about how FAST time goes by. How do I slow it down? Here are some of my most recent fav. moments...
(this will have to be the first of a few volumes since I haven't posted in so long!)

Halloween Night 2009


IMG_8355 IMG_8357


IMG_8349-2 IMG_8397


IMG_8301 IMG_8403



Help out there for Parents! Vol. 1 The start of getting scripture into your homes and hearts!

Disclaimer: I am not a specialist or a pro... I am just a mom who knows what it's like to feel out of options, tired, frustrated with my kids, and at my whits end not knowing what to do. God showed me through a lot of smart people, great books, prayer and late nights that even if my child doesn't change... I will look at each new day differently and when I am focusing on my day as a time to love and teach God's word to her... it's more exciting and purposeful and the dishes in the sink and the toys on the floor and the trips to timeout dont get to me as much as they did in weeks prior. Oh yeah... and SHE IS acting different, she is not loving and kind and happier and feels like she is getting MORE of my attention. Just try some of these intentional things out and see what happens! Intentional... that's the perfect word. This is just about us being INTENTIONAL in the way we spend our time with our kids.

Bry and I went to a weekend, well just a Saturday, retreat or parenting summit held by a local Church. It was really cool how God lead us there, and definitely what we had been praying for as far as guidance on how to have a Christ centered approach to parenting, even at a toddler age. It gave us resources to have what they call a "family night" or "devotional night" and how you make it different from anything we have known. ( fun and something the kids looked forward to and not dreaded) They gave us resources for teaching and discipline and practical ways you pour scripture into the minds of our children. Which having a two year old can be challenging at times. We were given wisdom on what we are a parenting team should look like and act. We learned about how to teach our kids the "new normal" that they would have in their home as Christ followers. It's just amazing that we were given this training now with such a young family. There were others there who had highschoolers and junior high kids, not that it cant be done but it will be more of a challenge for them than those of us who are starting with very young kids!

I am going to be posting some of the things we learned the resources we were given and where you can find them, how it can apply to all ages and I hope that it will make you feel empowered, as you truly are, because there is no one more suitable for teaching and reaching your child like you. Think with me for a moment about Jesus and His disciples... He spent his days and nights with them, He lived with them, He know what they were good at, He knew their gifts, He knew their weaknesses, their personalities, He knew their character, he knew their language... He reached them because He knew their needs... YOU know the needs of your children the ways of your "people" so to speak. God has given you everything you need to guide your child. There is no one on the planet more suitable for this job than you. Even though you feel like you aren't, you are who God has given your child to teach and guide them. God gave you your child specifically FOR YOU as well!


As a mother , especially of toddlers, we struggle with low self esteem. Feeling inadequate, useless, inferior, and a lot of times unloved in our roll... BUT God can give you the strength you need the confidence you need to live out this verse: (this has become our family verse and will soon be on the walls literally of our home)

Deuteronomy 6:5-9
" 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them to your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the door frames of your houses and on your gates.' "

I am going to break down this scripture as well throughout these posts and talk about it's significance because we truly believe that this is the scripture that God would desire for all of us to live by. The world is constantly getting filled with more and more degradation. The generations are not going to be changed by the church alone.. WE are the church! Lives will be changed and the foundations of many lives rocked in the living rooms of your homes. It's starts there for those of us who are parents.

Resources: Music with a message "write these commands on your hearts. Get them inside you and your children" THE MESSAGE

If you are like us you are constantly looking for christian music that kids love but is not so mind-numbingly cheesy you can listen to it all the time in your car. THESE CD's actually have an added bonus, its actual verses that your children (and you) are learning to music... and they are awesome! Right now we are listening to Vol. 3 and my memory verse is Rev.7:10&12 it's incredible! http://www.seedsfamilyworship.net/

Daytime Fun and Bedtime Books "when you lie down and when you get up" NIV

Once a week we pick a lesson to teach Kehnley, it's different from family night. This is a fun project that I will do during the day because I am home with her and she loves it. There are a lot of resources out there for you to find lessons if you don't have the desire or creative juices to think up your own...

Example: We started with the things God made, Genesis, she LOVES rainbows so we talked about the story of Noah and the Ark and the rainbow promise that God gave us in the sky. I drew her a rainbow, she colored it and we found objects like yarn and stickers and confetti and separated it by colors and glued it in each band. I told her the rainbow was a miracle and a promise. I told her SHE was a miracle too... the other night she told me I was a miracle it really blesses me to see her learn about that at such a young age. We hung it on the wall by the kitchen table so she sees it and comments on it. The next week we talked about the animals and God made the animals...she made a collage of animal pictures. Something simple but fun! She likes listing all the things God has made, birds, bugs, dogs, cats... lol it's cute!

Bedtime blessings (vol.1&2) are short little stories that teach your kids about God and His word and encourage them. We read a fun book and one of these. Kehnley loves to read so she has her fav. and then we tell a story, sometimes its not directly from the book, she is still so little, but it gives you a place to start.

Also, books like this one are great to start teaching your little ones about God.

(there are a few others by Debbie Anderson, they are great bedtime books too!)

Children's Devotionals "talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road" NIV

This is the devotional book that we use with Kehnley, she is 2 so...we just went with an age appropriate book that others we knew liked.

For older kids there are these books, and the Guy who practically revolutionized Family night... Jim Weidmann here are links to his books! They are INCREDIBLE!
He and his wife have 4 kids, they are older now...but he started this and talks about the change it made in their lives and in their family all together.

How it all works: Family Night "devotionals that are actually FUN!"

We play some music from the cd I talked about earlier, she now has her fav. songs she wants to hear, we jump around dance and just have fun, then Bry and I either have something to act out from this devotional book (God and Me) or something to read and we do that all together! We finish the night with a sweet treat, ice cream or Popsicles.... just to make it something fun and different. When the music comes on she knows it's fam. night and she always looks forward to it. To be honest we do too! We talk about what lessons we will do and we get excited planning our skits and stuff.. lol if you aren't as theatrical as us (which I am assuming most aren't) there are options in the book to do it differently.)
Example: one night was about waiting...patience, so Bry bought her a little movie and wrapped it in a big bag and made it all eye catching and told her she could have it... but she would have to wait til the end of dinner. It sat right there and she wanted to open it so bad and Bry taught a lesson about how sometimes the best things are something we have to wait to get. God loves it when we wait and don't ruin the gift! So after dinner she opened it and we watching the show! It may not sink in now, but it sure taught US a lesson... and it will be those little things to keep sewing those seeds of God's word in her heart.

In fear of making this any longer than it already is, I am going to end it here. If you are interested or need any links or ideas to crafts and fun ways of having lessons with your kids, or books and resources please comment and I will get back to you with those. Hope this gives you a good start at least in implementing these spiritual disciplines into your homes.


Wordless Wednesday: Pumpkin Patch Sneak-e-Peek!

Ok ok, so this was supposed to be wordless but I really had some things I needed to say about this baby girl, who isn't looking like a baby anymore in these pics. I refuse to believe that though when she snuggles her head on my shoulder under my chin when she falls asleep in the car and I have to transfer her inside. Kehnley, you are the most outrageously gorgeous girl I know and you have this laugh that is SO contagious! You have always been a firecracker ever since you were a little baby...never just sitting pretty always reaching for anything in sight, ,moving and shaking so fast! By 4 months you had so many teeth it was wrong to not let you eat cereal, you were already holding your head up and the doc said "go for it!" so I did... you tried to feel yourself the very first time i ever reached across that empty space to smother your cheeks with beige goo! You walked so fast, it was the start of 9 months and you were striding with such easy... you were already mimicking Fancy's fast walk with the arm swing! You LOVED to watch anything you could sit in front of and dissect...at such a young age baby Einstein caught your attention, you would memorize the things coming next and start laughing at your fav parts before they even happened! You have loved animals all your life, you still love Lilly now even though you will push her off the couch sometimes for a giggle... which is not very nice, lets me be nice to our Lilly....God gave her to us okay?! Mommy will try harder too! You are afraid of very little...you tell me you'll "pix" everything all the time, you put on make up with such ease...even your fake mascara which consists of you licking your finger and brushing it over your lashes...not sure what that's about. You are so fast to pick up dance moves and song lyrics to something even from the first time you hear it, just like your vocally challenged, legend in her own mind, mommy. You LOVE to play tackle football with daddy! You call it "hut-ball" probably bc all you and daddy say is "hut hut" and run around the house after each other. You are a great doctor and I love it when you say "all beddur" when you finish my examination. I wish all doctors said that! There is only one little yellow gerbil lick creature that steals your heart and at least an hour of our day... Wubsy! Wow wow wubsy! You talk like him, you act like him, you memorize the lines and recite them to us, you ask for it all the time and if commercials slow the flow of your fav. high pitched gerbil friend episodes you get a deep voice and it stirs up fear in our hearts when you say "WUUBBBBSYYYY" like you have to have it, your a FEND! It's kind of scary actually. :) But you do love this song called "the Lord" according to your memory it's Seeds of praise track 2 and it's Ps. 148:1-5... you made up hand movements I have yet to capture on tape, but we all must do them together over and over when the song is playing...which is so cute because you said your hands when you say "praise the name of the LORD!" All that to say at 28 months you are just as exciting and sweet at the first day I held you... except now your fav foods are hot dogs, "yellow noodles"=mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, strawberries, corn, and waffles. Lets work on those food groups, k? Love you!


There's nothing better than a blog full of pics!

I have been working on this other blog post for a while now about the things we have learned at a parents summit Bry and I went to, it's really incredible seeing the fruit of that wisdom being implemented in our home. Kehnley and I have a much better relationship, as if it were even possible, Bry and I are so excited about this night called "family night" every week where we teach Kehnley a lesson from God's word, really short and simple, you can imagine the attention span of a 2 yr. old. And she initiates prayer together now, how cool is that!! God is blessing us in our home so much by making Him and His word the focus! Needless to say it's a lot of information to try and share but God put it on my heart to share it...SO it will be coming soon, in the meantime enjoy these pics of my crazy beautiful girl, the every growing Sadie belly and Trips to fun places including the LBK !! ( I didn't forget about Canton... those will be a later date!)
The Glowing Red embers lead the way....
Wish the fire was enough to keep us warm!!

This is how we do it!

Getting our guns up at the bonfire!

The football is supposed to distract from my bump!

RSC float, hey there's Nicole!!! Bry hurry, chase them!

Megan the TECH Trek! lol

Sugar Browns... they didn't have cider, what in the world!?

LOL, guys love to pose together!

game day girls!

The group is back in the LBK and loving it!

Mrs. Raider Red herself rocking the best tech scarf! Go Amy :)

Like the good ol days!

that is a gloved gun if ever I seen one!

Section 11 holler!

Terry's face would not look so cheerful after the temp drops!

I heart my hubby in Lubbock!

Dinner at La Griglia for the Bday! with the fam

a little bit of a pirate spin on the usual "cheese" arrrrrr

First time to lick the whisk EVER in Kehnley history after making dad a batch of "we love you" brownies!
Wow... you made it through ALL those pics! Good for you, now God make YOU some "i love you" brownies... and don't forget to lick the spoon!