Monday, August 5, 2013

♪♫ Music Monday ♪♫ - "Perfect Peace"

It's been a very long time since I've done a Music Monday, but I've been listening to this song most of the day and thought I'd share! I do believe it's my favorite song - at least for now. ;)

Ephesians 4:6-7
"Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with
thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts
and minds through Christ Jesus."



Friday, July 26, 2013

A Week (or so) of Instagram Action ❤

Well, here lately I haven't taken the time to update on the blog much. I would like to, really, but one can only accomplish so much in any given day. Our days are filled  to overflowing for sure! The summer has gone by so fast - I can't believe it's almost August!! Titus starts kindergarten this year, so hopefully I can get back to blogging so I can document all his adventures.
I really do love Instagram because it is so simple to post. And I prefer pictures over the lengthy FB posts anyway. So here is our past week or so....via Instagram. :)

LOVE all the faces of Thad!!
My mom made cookies while she was here and then froze some dough for us to bake later... They were yummy!!! 


A childhood favorite - English muffin pizzas!!

The makings for blackberry jam...

...and success!!

A mini-vacation!!
A family in our church is very kind to let us use their pool when they are out of town! :)

Thad loves his new teether - Sophie!! 


Also, it should be noted that I am posting this from my phone... So who knows what the format will look like. Guess I'll find out in a week or so when I actually log on to a computer... :)

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Super Hero Birthday Bash -Titus Turns 5!

This was such a fun and easy party!! I wasn't really planning to do much for his birthday because of being so worn out and still recovering from my C-section 4 weeks prior. But Titus is REALLY big on parties! He had been looking forward to his birthday for months, so I decided to do a few things to make it a little extra special - especially since this was his last birthday before starting school.  


We decided on a Super Hero theme and got to work! To be completely honest, I wanted to spend NO money on this party because I hadn't been working for about 8 weeks.  I succeeded in only spending $10 total, including his present! That is not including the food because that was paid for out of the grocery budget... :)

Like our Valentine Party, we kept the guests to family only.  My mom and sis and her little boy were in town to make it extra special.  I think family parties are my favorite!!

So now for a few fun details and action shots.

Titus had fun helping me make the backdrop! The girls even helped by putting some of the windows on. Titus loved it so much that we ended up hanging it in his room for a few weeks! :)


Party Food - We had hot dogs (Wonder Dogs), popcorn (POP), chips and salsa (Krunch and Dunk), and fruit (Ka-Bams).



Cake - always Titus's favorite part!

Place Settings

These super delicious cookies were made by my very talented sister!

Let's get this party started!!

Happy to finally be FIVE!!



Our favorite Super Heroes!!

Titus and his cousin Kaiden
I made a paper bag pinata for the kids to have fun with.  Titus wouldn't look when he was swinging - ha!! I actually just recycled all the Valentine and Easter candy still in our cupboards  - they didn't care!!
You can see in the bottom photo that my dad was able to attend via Skype - very thankful for technology!!
This was the biggest hit of the party!!! Silly String aka Spider Web Spray

For Titus's gift, we gave him all the Hot Wheels that Tim had been saving for him since Tim was a kid - it was A LOT!!! They had fun looking at and opening them all. :)

♪♫ Happy Birthday to Titus! ♪♫

Make a wish!!!

Friday, May 10, 2013

Introducing the Keurig Vue V500!! ♥ and a 40% offer!

I was so thrilled to be selected to host a House Party for Keurig!!!
I was sent a Vue V500 brewer to review and introduce to friends at our party.  My party pack was amazing and filled with lots of goodies: A BREWER!!, hot and cold cups, napkins, Vue packs, mints, 2 ceramic mugs, coupons, and a tin of Mrs. Field's assorted cookies. 

We obviously HAD to try the brewer beforehand in order to be able to show it off properly to our guests. ;)  Our favorite features are the option to brew a larger, stronger cup and the 2 step lattes.

My Party Pack

The brewing station


Cookies taste better off of this serving plate! ♥

Cheesecake + Coffee = Pure Bliss

The awesome variety of Vue Packs in my party pack!

Handy tin that originally housed the cookies.


Brewing a 2-step latte - My Favorite! This variety uses 2 pack -  a froth pack and a coffee pack.
 We had a great time at the party, and are still enjoying our brewer on a daily basis!! 
We've been fans of Keurig for awhile now - we own the platinum brewer and the milk frother - BUT the features of the Vue are by far our favorite!

Vue V500

The k-cups and packs are designed differently and are not compatible/interchangeable between brewer models.



The Vue packs feature an actual filter inside, which, IMO contributes to the option for a stronger brew.  Brewing a stronger cup of coffee takes a few seconds longer, allowing the coffee to steep a little longer before dispensing.  When I brew a strong, 16 oz cup of coffee, I am SOOO getting my money's worth! Ha! It tastes amazing and lasts longer! :)
K-cup VS. Vue Pack
 And finally a close-up of the touch screen...so many options! 
In love with all the extra options!!!


This coupon is good for 40% off the V500 brewer at keurig.com, making it only around $100.  BUT it expires TOMORROW - 5.11.13!!
Please note the code contains the number zero NOT the letter"O." 


Saturday, March 23, 2013

Welcome Baby! He's Finally Here! ♥

We are so in love with our new addition!! I'm so thankful he's finally here! We are adjusting to a new schedule and routine and figuring out what works and doesn't. So a short post for now, but I'm working on a post with more details and pictures, so stay tuned! :)


Friday, March 15, 2013

Preparing for Baby #4

Today is my due date!! But really, what's a due date?? I don't think this baby wants to come just yet.  So, if I don't have him by next Tuesday, the 19th, I will have a scheduled repeat C-section.
REALLY hoping it doesn't come to that, but the Dr. didn't give me much hope today.

As much as I really want him to be born - like a week ago! - I've been able to make good use of the past week to finish some final preparations to make life a little easier after he gets here.
Since this is my third pregnancy, I should be a pro, right? Ha, not really! In my mind I was thinking I didn't really have much to do to prepare. After having twins, I was thinking adding one more little bundle of joy would be a breeze. :) But when I started writing out all that I wanted to have done before our little guy comes, I realized Baby #4 takes just as much preparation -  only in time rather than money! So here are a few things I've done in hopes of making life easier.




1. I started cleaning and organizing every nook and cranny of my house about 4 months ago.  I knew if I didn't de-clutter some things, I would feel overwhelmed when all the baby gear came out of the attic.  We live in a small 1700 sq. ft. home - and when I was cleaning and organizing, I was very thankful our home isn't any bigger!  The past week has been a mad rush to make sure laundry is caught up, toys are still organized, dusting, vacuuming, etc...  - but having a mostly organized space to begin with has made my "nesting" a lot easier.

2. I created a baby registry.  This was a last minute decision as I don't really need anything for the baby. He's our 2nd boy, and I've kept everything from my older son. BUT, there were a few things I would like for him to have new and some necessities.  And most stores will send a percentage off coupon for purchasing anything left on your registry. I ended up registering for:
• new crib sheets 
 My girls are still in toddler beds so a few extra will be nice.
• pacifiers
• receiving blankets 
I discovered the kind I like when I had my girls, but the ones I have are all girl colors. :)
• supplies for my breast pump
• a snap n go stroller frame 
I'm keeping my double sit n stand for when I need to let the girls ride along, but the more compact stroller frame will be nice for church and outings to the park.
• diapers, baby wash & lotion, diaper rash cream, etc..
I just wanted to be able to purchase these with the coupon. :)
• diaper bag
I really don't NEED this, but should I decide to splurge, it will be nice to have the coupon.
• bibs and burp cloths
After 4 kiddos, I need a few that are suitable for use in public.

I registered at Target a few weeks ago and got my registry completion coupon in the mail yesterday.

3. I've been freezing meals.  The easiest way for me to do this was to make double of everything for the past couple of weeks and freeze the leftovers.  I planned meals I knew would freeze well. I've never really done freezer meals before, so I'll give you my ideas, but I'm not promising the results!
• Lasagna - recipe
I refrigerated our half pan of leftovers overnight and wrapped and froze them the next day in freezer bags.
• Cheesy Restaurant Style Enchiladas
I've been intending to post the recipe here, but there are plenty online you could use.  I did NOT bake these ahead of time. I assembled everything in a disposable foil pan ready for the oven and will bake it the day we eat it.
• Lasagna Roll-ups
I had leftover cheese mixture from making lasagna, so this was as simple as boiling the noodles. My freezer was pretty full and I didn't have room for another foil pan, so I made the rolls and froze them individually on wax paper. The plan is to add sauce on the day I heat them.  We can also just pull out a few for lunch if needed, rather than baking a whole pan at once.
• Chicken Pot Pie Muffins - recipe
I just froze the mixture and wrote directions on the freezer bag for pressing the biscuits in the muffin pan.  I included temp and bake time so that I don't have to look up the recipe to make them.
•Vegetable Soup
• Taco Soup
• Chili
• BBQ Chicken for Sandwiches
I just froze all the leftovers from these meals in quart size freezer bags. Super Easy!
Homemade Salsa - recipe
This is a staple and I didn't want to be caught without it, so I made a large batch and froze several quarts. :)

It really helps that Tim is pretty handy in the kitchen, so I also made sure I have supplies on hand for meals that he likes to make: Nachos, Breakfast (pancakes, eggs, bacon, biscuits and gravy, etc...), Grilled Cheese Sandwiches... all basic stuff and super easy to stock the fridge and pantry.  We even bought Smucker's Uncrustables because I remember a few days when the twins were little that even making a sandwich seemed impossible!!
We love smoothies, so my freezer is stocked with frozen fruits as well.



4. The most time consuming and hardest part of preparing for Baby #4 has been WASHING EVERYTHING.  My little boy clothes have been stored for almost 5 years, so I spent many hours treating stains.  THIS RECIPE was a life saver!!!  I also took my car seat completely apart and basically gave it a detailed cleaning...not fun!

5. I made new batches of baby wipes, laundry detergent, and cleaning wipes. I make my cleaning wipes the exact same way as the baby wipes, but substitute the 2 1/4 cups of water with a cleaning solution.  I use a Lemon Lysol concentrated cleaner that I mix with water to equal the needed amount of liquid  - but use whatever you want! These are a life-saver for quick cleaning and so much cheaper than brand name wipes.



6. We bought a van!!!! I had to add this because I'm sooo excited. We love our new ride and all the extra space it provides.  It was a necessity, but the Lord blessed us with a much nicer van than we were thinking we could afford.  We didn't want to take on the stress of a car payment, so we shopped and shopped and shopped!!! until we found a deal we could pay cash for.  We are now the proud owners of a Honda Odyssey Touring model with all the bells and whistles we could imagine.  I'm STILL figuring out all the features!


Now, if this baby would just COME! :)

Monday, February 25, 2013

What's in A {Baby} Name??

Countdown to due date is 2 WEEKS and 4 DAYS!!  If I don't go into labor by the 19th, I will have a C-section, so no more than 3 WEEKS and 1 DAY left of this pregnancy. 

...and still NO NAME for our little guy! 

We've narrowed it down to two names - but lest you think that's an accomplishment, here's the scoop:

My future family planning since college always included 2 boys and 2 girls...check...
Tim and I both discussed (as many couples do) how awesome it would be to have twins...check...
Any girl names would start with K - my favorite letter - resulting in our choosing Kaelyn and Kourtney. :)
Boy names would be Titus James and Silas David. 
End of story?? 

Negative... slight dilemma...

Our name (Silas) has been used  - twice...
First by a family member...they are Tim's cousins and  missionaries in Spain so not a huge deal, but still... :) 
Secondly, by a family in our church... recently (within the last 1.5 years). And their last name starts with C as well, so the boys would even have the same initials.  

Sooooo, here are our name choices and some thoughts:

Silas David
Meaning:
forest, woods (think manly..lol)
Biblical significance: 
Silas was a missionary companion of Paul and Timothy. I love the story of Paul and Silas singing in their jail cell at midnight.
Thoughts: 
It's been taken!!!
But I've had it picked out since college!
It sounds good with Titus....Titus and Silas.
My Titus already calls the baby Silas.
Should I really base the decision of what to name my child on current location and people.  God's been known to move people when they least expect it...and the likelihood of the "two Silases" living near each other after age 18?? And they won't be in the same class at school...
If I don't name him Silas, will I continue to and always THINK of him as Silas??


Thaddeus David
(alt. Thaddaeus)
Meaning: 
friend, courageous heart, God's gift
Nickname:
We'd probably call him "Thad."
Biblical significance:
Thaddeus was an apostle of Jesus - also known as Jude. He was a missionary as well. 
Thoughts:
I have a love/hate relationship with this name - some days I love it and some days it looks weird on paper.  Pregnancy hormones and emotions, maybe?
It would be his name uniquely.
(and an uncommon and not over-used name is of utmost importance)
I actually like the meaning better.
Naming our son Thaddeus would mean all girl names in our family start with "K" and all boy names start with "T." And, yes, people have noticed and assume we will be picking a "T" name. It happened completely unintentionally, though! And would our Christmas cards look funny if we went with a "non-T" name...Silas = odd man/letter out?? :)
Having a Bible name is also important, and since we have a large family with lots of nieces and nephews, most of them have already been used...Eli, Levi, Noah, Caleb, Andrew, Matthew, Titus, Gideon, Silas, Timothy, Gabriel...all taken. 


Conclusion?
I've thought about and analyzed this entirely too much!!!
Please help!!
Leave a comment - because the more opinions the better, right?? 
 and vote in the poll in the sidebar. :)

(If you are visiting from my facebook link, please leave any and all comments here rather than on my FB page.)

Oh and an FYI - Middle name is set...David after Tim's dad. :)

And here's a pretty picture because all blog posts need a picture...
The pack n play is set up in our room and ready! 
 It has survived three kiddos and still looks great! :)


Shanna @ Red Poppy Quilts made our little guy this gorgeous quilt. It adds the perfect finishing touch - I love the colors!



Friday, February 15, 2013

Our Family Valentine's Party {2013} ♥


I had so much fun putting together our family party this year!! I ended up only having to buy the perishable ingredients for our food and paper plates -  the rest was just leftovers from other parties. 

Because our party was delayed by 6+ hours, Titus had lots of time to anticipate the fun.  He kept telling me things like "This is so beautiful," "This is the best party I ever saw," and "I'm so proud of you!"  - he was cracking me up! I always want my kiddos to know that I do what I do for THEM! I think the details do matter to them - he could tell it was a special party just for us. :)

So without too much explanation, here are a few pictures of our Valentine's Day celebration:
Dessert and Presents Table

Brownie Pops

Marshmallow Pops - these things are JUMBO - like...SUPER HUGE!! :)
Titus had fun helping with these!

Chocolate Iced Heart Brownies


Presents!

Girls' Plates


Titus's Plate - He was so excited about his larger version of the bug valentine!

Food Table


Heart Fruit
Strawberry/Banana Smoothies

Popcorn Chicken - I tossed ours in Sweet Baby Ray's Buffalo Sauce, and it was YUMMY!!!

Homemade Valentine Pizza



She was too engrossed in her bubbles to smile for me...




The girls LOVE their new Care Bears!!! Titus got some new super hero stuff, and they all got new pj's.  But since it was SUPER late, we will be watching our movie and eating our popcorn & snack necklaces TONIGHT! 




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