Monday, November 30, 2009

Our Thanksgiving weekend

This year, we went to Troy's sister's house for Thanksgiving.  We had turkey,
yummy side dishes,
and fun with family.



The church's music director was on vacation again, so Troy led worship this Sunday.  We had a great time in Kidmo, the children were in the mood to participate, which we always love!
We went to another church in the area and led them in an afternoon of praise and worship.  Thank you, Spring Harvest Church, for the opportunity!
Now, back to the daily grind...

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Old pictures

I'm talking, really old.  Like, from 25 years ago.  Ones that, even though you look horrible, you can laugh at them and say, "That's back when my mom dressed me."  (Leaving me no excuse for now!)
Hmmm, I can't say my mom dressed me here, but I can say she forced me to wear those awful glasses.  That was back when baptist said wire rim glasses were evil.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Mmmm, Fudge

Who else besides me could make fudge turn out like this?
Pretty gross, huh?  And, this was my second batch...

Friday, November 20, 2009

Husband Encouragement Challenge

I haven't been posting about this lately because the days of challenges have been veery similar.  That is, until Day 24.
"And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord." (Ephesians 6:4)

Then, it goes on to say, "A wise wife will support her husband's leadership in the home as much as possible, and will praise him for his fathering skills. Negativity makes a man feel like a failure, and may make him to want to give up."

Hmmm.  This strikes a chord with me.  I'm a little, overbearing, shall we say, in my parenting of the girls.  I have my ideas of discipline and expect Troy to know exactly what I'm thinking by my evil eye.  One of the girls acts up, I expect him to interpret my squint as, "3 minute time-out".  And, if he doesn't, well, it's not pretty.

I really need to work on this.  I guess God knew I was getting bored with the challenge and needed something to "challenge" me.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Knit Hats

I posted about this on my other blog, http://morethanapairofchutes.wordpress.com/2009/09/26/my-new-relaxation-technique/ , but I wanted to show my blogger readers these, too.  I finished Aves' hat, finally, that flower kept hovering over my head.  It's so intricate, I use #1 needles for it, and I was trying a new pattern.  I liked the way it turned out.  Here are the girls in their pretty knit hats...

Averie's looks funny because, well, she doesn't like wearing it.  It was quite the fight to keep it on long enough for me to snap the picture.

I finally put items in my Etsy shop!

I've had this shop since the end of last year, but have never listed any items.  I have had some in the works for a while, and finally got around to listing two items!  A blue and a red Christmas ornament.  Beautiful quilted balls.  I only listed two, but will make some more soon, (tonight?), and get them listed soon.  I am selling them cheaper than most of the other quilted ball sellers, so maybe they'll sell quickly!
Here's my store...
http://www.etsy.com/shop/thealligatorpurse

Feel free to purchase ;-)

Monday, November 16, 2009

I could have been grilling...

Want to see my new toy?



Yes, I have a new stove.  We went to Michigan last month to pick it up.  3 hours each way.  But, it was worth it.  Troy plugged it in a couple of weeks ago while trying to figure out which knobs to buy for it.  He never unplugged it, since it's gas and we figured, why walk over to the outlet.  Until, yesterday, he was showing our friends the stove and they wondered why the grill was hot?  Duh, it's electric.  One of the kids had brushed by the knob and turned it on.  So, I could have been using it for sandwiches all along, lol!  We're so clueless.

Last week, Troy had to take a little trip to pick his grandpa up from the airport.  He took Cam with him, and I let her take the camera.  Here's what my budding photog came up with...




She doesn't know she's getting her very own camera from Santa...Shhh!

Friday, November 13, 2009

Our Mini-Vacation

Earlier this week, we left the girlies with grandpa and grandma and headed off to Schaumburg, just me and Troy.  He did some work and some relaxing, and I did some shopping.  We've been living so far from easily accessable shopping for a year now, and it was so nice to be 2 minutes from Target again!  I hit the Container Store, Marshalls, Old Navy, Woodfield Mall, and many, many more places.  I managed to control my spending, only getting the girls one set of matching dresses, a coat for Aves, a scrapbook for Camdyn, and these...

Pretty boots :-)

Here's where Troy used to spend 8 hours a day...


What a nice break it was, but it was so good to get back to my babies!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Days 12-17

I haven't been updating because, my husband took me on vacation!  I guess my challenge has been working, lol!
Most of the ones lately have been more reminders to uplift and not criticize.  Must be something I really need to work on.
One that really struck a cord with me was day 16.  "Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ." (2 Peter 3:18a)

It says to notice ways your husband is growing spiritually.  Well, he has been a Christian for nearly all his life, and has been growing in those things since then.  But, lately, he's really become very obviously spiritually wise.  Many times over the past few years he's had to make decisions and lead others in difficult areas.  His quiet wisdom and supportive advice has been instrumental in the lives of countless others.
He is a great spiritual leader.  I believe his wisdom in actions is making permanent changes in the lives of many around him.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Days 10 & 11

Day 10:  "Behold, you are handsome, my beloved! Yes, pleasant!" (Song of Solomon 1:16a)


Probably every wife wants her husband to tell her constantly how beautiful she is and how he adores her, but do we return the favor?
The challenge asked us to tell our husbands what we see in him that makes him attractive.  Physical or spiritual.  Well, since my husband is the most handsome man in the world, that's easy.  I hope I let him know that enough.  And lately, his "Strength of character in a culture that lacks integrity?" is shining through.  He's standing for what the Bible says instead of what "men" say.  It's hard, because men he trusted are betraying him.  But, he's right in his words and actions, he has nothing to be ashamed before God about.  The way he's handling himself in adversity is wise and exactly the way the Bible directs him to.

Day 11:  "Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord." (Ephesians 5:22)

I hate to sound like a broken record, but it's easy for me to respect my husband.  I used to joke around with him in front of others, but in doing that, probably really embarrased him because I was really picking on him. And, don't even get me started on when I used to play on his worship team - can I blame my infertility hormones?  (I don't, completely, maybe a little...)
He's always the one to have the wise things to say in a serious conversation.  And, every once in a while, he's really funny ;-)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Day 9

No, I didn't skip day 8, but it was simply "encourage your husband".  That's what I've been trying to do all along.  Thank him for being faithful.  Okay, so that's a big thing, I'm SO thankful that he's faithful to me.  It's something that I don't even worry about, I trust him so much.

Day 9:  "Be swift to hear, slow to speak . . ." (James 1:19b)
Yesterday wasn't the day for this one, or maybe it was the perfect day for it.  Anyway, I didn't do too well, but I think the things I said were things I needed to say.  He's been a pastor for years now.  For some reason, people who go to church seem to think that they "own" their pastor.  Why?  Because they give money to the church?  Well, some of them do, some don't, but that's beside the point.  You give your money to the Starbucks barista, do you "own" her?  You give your money to Apple when you buy off of I-Tunes, do you "own" them?  So, why do you seem to think you "own" your pastor?  He works for God, not you, he'll answer to God, not you.  That's what a TON of people in churches today need to learn.  That's something along the lines of what we were dealing with yesterday, and I, fed up with the pain he's been in for so long, said some things that I don't think he expected to hear from me.  I hope they were things he needed to hear, things to encourage him.  I hope...

I'm so proud of my husband.  Yes, he'll answer to God for the way he's serving Him, and I believe he'll have a mountain of jewels to lay at Jesus' feet.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Pumpkin Bread

If any of you have ever had Bob Evan's pumpkin bread, this comes really close to matching it in flavor and texture.  Really moist, not too sweet, yummy!

Pumpkin Bread
3 1/2 c. pumpkin puree
1/2 vegetable oil
2 2/3 c. sugar
4 eggs
3 c. all purpose flour
2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. ground cloves

*Preheat the oven to 350*F.  Grease and flour 2 loaf pans.
*In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin, oil, sugar and eggs.
*In a seperate bowl, combine the flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon and cloves.  Stir into the pumpkin mix until blended.
*Divide the mix evenly into the 2 loaf pans.
*Bake for 55-60 minutes.  The top of the loaf will spring back when lightly pressed.

**The recipe I followed didn't have a measurement for the baking powder, but did mention it in the directions.  After researching, I came up with many recipes that don't use baking powder, and many that used the same amount as baking soda.  I compromised with 1/2 the amount, but feel free to adjust as you desire.

**Add-ins:  Chocolate chips, dried cranberries, cinnamon chips - Yum!

Monday, November 2, 2009

Days 6 & 7

Day 6:
"Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God." (1 Corinthians 10:31b)


"Praise your husband's creative side."  Wow!  This one's easy.  His handiwork, he's awesome at fixing up a house.  He's fixed up 3 houses for us since we started buying houses.  And music.  He was a worship pastor for years in our prior church and has been leading worship in our church for a few months.  Although he's facing Satan for it, he's staying honorable through it all.  He has the ability to take a band from merely "playing music" to "worshipping God".  He has a true heart for worship.
Day 7:

"Do not overwork to be rich; because of your own understanding, cease! For riches certainly make themselves wings." (Proverbs 23:4, 5b)


"That I may cause those who love me to inherit wealth, that I may fill their treasuries." (Proverbs 8:21)

Finances.  Always a good way to start an argument.  He's so wise with how he handles them.  Even when I overspend, he gets us back on track ;-)

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Trick or Treat 2009

We don't take the girls door to door on Halloween, but we did dress them up and take them to Grandpa & Grandma's and across to our neighbor's, Mrs. Robin.  Averie was a cow and Camdyn was Tinkerbell.




Daddy posed with both of them on our front steps.


Isn't she a cute cow?



Then, we had hot dogs and homemade apple pie after the festivities.  Yummy!  I'll have to post my recipe, soon.  It was a combination of a couple of recipes from my old church's cookbook.  It's nice cooking things I can remember or at least imagine those who wrote them making.