My Family

My Family

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

This is Halloween!

The boys... the girls...

the pirates(!)... and the non-costumed.
Hope your Halloween was safe and happy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A Birthday, A Nap and A Trip

Thomas turned 7 last week.
Isaac had a nap. His fingers caught in the blanket.
And we all got to see Grandma and Grandpa this weekend.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


They are good.
Especially when it comes to blogging.
Except that seems to be all they really ends up being, just intentions.
I must be paving my own road to...well, you know where.

I am SHOCKED an entire week has gone by.
The time has flown.

It was fall break last week, with no tight schedule in place at all.
Heavenly days, you would think I could have taken pictures or blogged even ONCE in that time.
(Oh, wait! The 17th was during that week...I did blog ONCE during that time!)

So although you have had to do without my words of wisdom for far longer than you would have liked, I have now come to your rescue, and will enlighten you today!

"If a man does not keep pace with his companions,
perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer.
Let him step to the music he hears,
however measured or far away.
--Henry David Thoreau

Although they are not my words, they are words I think of often as I deal with people, and especially as I deal with my own children.
It also makes a big difference in my attitude toward myself when I start comparing myself to the women around me in whom I find reasons to be amazed.

Have a super day...
I'll be back soon.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Creative Outlets

I've been making cards,

altering tins and jars,

and even tried my hand at altering a notebook for a friend of Emily's.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Pssst....Wanna Know a Secret?

Come closer, and I'll tell you.


Are you sure??

It's a that's guaranteed to....
Wait, I won't guarantee much of anything...
But it's worth reading.

Deep breath...
(No, I'm not pregnant.)
Here goes....

My kids wear second-hand clothes.
In fact, they've been doing it their whole lives.

Can you believe it?
I have bucked the system.
Given up on buying clothing at full price for my children, and tried to corner the market on organizing and "saving" clothing for the next child who may or may not fit into it as their size varies as quickly as (and sometimes quicker than) the seasons change.

Wait, I do have one retail place that I still shop...The Children's Place...and only when they have their clearance sales...and even then I have my limits.
Pants have to be under $10, unless we've had multiple knee and seat injuries to a high number of the owners current pants...and only then can I be FORCED to order something in the $12-15 range.
Shirts are generally $2 or 3, although I will go up to $5 if necessary.
You can almost always find a current coupon for 15% off (try CouponCabin), and if you sign up for Children's Place birthday club, you get a coupon for 20% off the month of your child's birthday. (That works well for us...although we now have 3 July birthdays...and I think you can only sign up 5 kids...(so not a whine there!) ).

Our family has been incredibly blessed by my mother who sends boxes of clothing from her local DI on a periodic basis.
It more than meets our clothing needs, and often we are able to bless others with the bounty that she sends.
In fact most of it is high items that last kid after kid after kid.
If for some reason we need something more, I try Childrens Place (great quality!) and then will make a stop at a second-hand store in Mesa (when or if I am in that area).
It truly has worked for us for the past 12 years.

Up until about 1 year ago, I had no limit on the clothing in my children's drawers.
It was insane trying to keep up with the laundry, let alone put everything away.
Now I have general limits that I try to stay in (give or take one or two).
No more than 7 pairs of pants or shorts.
No more than 7 short or long-sleeved shirts (dependent on the season).
Think about even that...14 x 9 = 126 major laundry items per week...and that's not counting pj's, underwear, socks, towels or sheets.
That's a LOT of laundry.

So, I throw down a challenge.
Clear out your drawers of the "extra" clothing that your children never quite get to, and pass it on.
Find a family that has children near your children's ages, and pass them on, or find a store or mission that takes donations.
Lighten your (literal) load, and clear the space for other things in your home.
See how much you can save by changing how and where you shop.
(Trust me, there is nothing much around here (kids clothing-wise), and if I can find ways to do it, I'd be willing to bet you can do it too!)

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Still here

Just distracted still.
I'm working on trying to get a regular schedule established....if it weren't for all of the standard doctor visits for Isaac, combined with the follow-ups for me (and my gall-bladder) and Samuel (for his asthma), coupled with Thomas' IEP meetings to make sure they are making accommodations for his low-vision, I might actually have some hope of having a "normal" schedule.
If you add to those the regular weekly (or so) visit to Wal-Mart to stock up on basics, and my seeming addiction to card-making, there is a lot to fit into every day.
Just homework alone is enough to make me want to hide my head from 3:30-5pm every piano and dance and scouts and achievement days...WHEW!
I decided a long time ago that I would not over schedule my children...and I work really hard not to...but we've decided all of the kids need to have a musical base to jump off of (or stay on) when they get older (hence the piano lessons), and Bekah has a talent that needs to be developed when it comes to dance (and both Pat and I felt very strongly prompted about that), so there's the scoop on what is occupying my time.
I'll find a balance again at some point.
Until then, keep up with my teetering attempts to fill you in.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007


This month, I've gone pink!
October in Breast Cancer Awareness month.

Breast cancer is something that touches all of us in some way.
About 4 years ago, I had a cyst that was only visible by ultrasound.
I had gone in for a mammogram due to abnormal bleeding (from the breast), and was then scheduled for an ultrasound because they could not pinpoint the problem.
It was a scary period in my life...considering whether or not I would be facing a battle with cancer.

I also have a dear friend, Susan Ludwig, who has battled breast cancer.
I admire her great strength and continual optimism.
I am so grateful that she is still here...and such a positive influence on me and my family!
I love you, Susan!

So, I'm PINK this remind you...
-Do your monthly self exam
-Know the "red flags" for early breast cancer detection
*A lump or thickening in or near the breast or in the underarm area.
*A change in the size or shape of the breast.
*A discharge from the nipple.
*A change in the color or feel of the skin of the breast, areola, or nipple (dimpled, puckered, or scaly).
-Get a mammogram yearly
-Be aware there is a breast cancer called "Inflammatory Breast Cancer" that does not follow these symptoms.

If you have any questions, call your doctor...and don't delay it due to fear.
Early detection and treatment are very effective in eradicating breast cancer.