For the month of December, MamaBear, is going to be featuring her special Christmas ornaments and the stories behind them and we are all welcome to join in. I probably won't participate everyday, but do plan on joining in some. Looking forward to hearing everyone else's stories.
I added a button in the top left corner...a link to our business website. Check it out!
We are a lot of things, but our business is a huge part of us. My hubby and our company are almost one and the same. I'm so proud of what he does everyday and what we have turned our little company into!
Chain Link Fence Installation
Manure Bunker Construction
Fence Install & Dry Lot Construction
It's a lot of work to keep a business going and growing, but so worth it. I'm finally starting to see some return on all the time I've put into advertising and marketing...makes it even more rewarding to be apart of it and to get to work with my love everyday. It's not always easy though. I tried to take some photos of the girls the other day for advertising purposes on our website. As you can see...didn't go so well!
On a side note, it may seem crazy.....but we are praying for a lot of snow this winter to keep us busy and financially flush going into next spring. As the Lord has blessed us richly, we wish blessing for all of you in your ventures!
We enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with my family on Thursday.
Charlie had fun playing with her cousins.
Cori liked all the attention.....for the most part. She wanted to be put down and left alone by the end of the day.
I only took 4 photos all day. It's pretty sad, but I was having such a good time getting everything together and being the hostess I love to be. Oh well, I'm hoping to get some copies from everyone else that was here.
We ate and ate and ate some more. We had an amazing amount of leftovers. I guess I didn't need the 24 lb turkey.
I tried a couple of new things...wonderful pie crust and Amanda's bacon-infused gravy. Amanda was right the gravy was amazing and the apple pie I made was yummy (I did use lard instead of the shortening). So, with all the bacon drippings and lard, I probably didn't need to add all the butter and cream cheese to the mashed potatoes. Oh, put they were so wonderful too!
My sister, Jessica, with Charlie and my nephew, Asher.
My little one, Cori.
The only picture of all the food.
This is the leftovers after we put them away.
Charlie crashed about 5:30 pm and was out for the night.
She sleep until 6:00 am Friday morning. Apparently all the fun and excitement wore her out.
It was great to see everyone. Such a blessing that we are able to get together. Hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving! God bless!
My friend, Amy, posted the following story on Facebook and on her blog today and it was just what I was thinking as I prepared for Thanksgiving. I've been contemplating a lot lately on the 'thorns' in my life and really do want to be thankful for them. God has a plan for us - for you and for me. We may not understand it at the present time, but things happen for a reason and it all happens in His time, not ours.
The Thorn Bouquet
Sandra felt as low as the heels of her Birkenstocks as she pushed against a November gust and the florist shop door. Her life had been easy, like a spring breeze.
Then, in the fourth month of her second pregnancy, a minor automobile accident stole her ease. During this Thanksgiving week she would have delivered a son. She grieved over her loss.
As if that weren't enough, her husband's company threatened a transfer. Then her sister, whose holiday visit she coveted, called saying she could not come. What's worse, Sandra's friend infuriated her by suggesting her grief was a God-given path to maturity that would allow her to empathize with others who suffer. "Had she lost a child? No! She has no idea what I'm feeling,"
Sandra shuddered. Thanksgiving? "Thankful for what?", she wondered. For a careless driver whose truck was hardly scratched when he rear-ended her? For an airbag that saved her life but took that of her child?
"Good afternoon, can I help you?" The flower shop clerk's approach startled her.
"I . . . . I need an arrangement."
"Do you want beautiful but ordinary, or would you like to challenge the day with a customer favorite I call the Thanksgiving Special?" Jenny saw Sandra's curiosity and continued, "I'm convinced that flowers tell stories, that each arrangement insinuates a particular feeling. Are you looking for something that conveys gratitude this morning?"
"Not exactly!" Sandra blurted. "Sorry, but in the last five months, everything that could go wrong has." Sandra regretted her outburst but was surprised when Jenny said, "I have the perfect arrangement for you."
The door's small bell suddenly rang.
The store clerk politely excused herself from Sandra and walked toward a small workroom. She quickly reappeared carrying a massive arrangement of green bows, and long-stemmed thorny roses. Only, the ends of the rose stems were neatly snipped, no flowers.
"Want this in a box?" the store clerk asked. Sandra watched for the customer's response.
Was this a joke? Who would want rose stems and no flowers! She waited for laughter, for
someone to notice the absence of flowers atop the thorny stems, but neither woman did.
"Yes, please. It's exquisite." "You'd think after three years of getting the special, I'd not be so moved by its significance, but it's happening again. My family will love this one. Thanks."
Sandra stared. "Why so normal a conversation about so strange an arrangement?" she wondered.
As the store clerk reapproached her Sandra said pointing toward the door, "That lady just left with, ah . . .well, she had no flowers!"
"Yep. That's the Special. I call it the Thanksgiving Thorns Bouquet."
"But, why do people pay for that?" In spite of herself she chuckled.
"Well," the store clerk began, "Barbara came into the shop three years ago feeling very much like you feel today. She thought she had very little to be thankful for. She had lost her father to cancer, the family business was failing, her son was into drugs, and she faced major surgery."
"Ouch!" said Sandra.
"That same year, I lost my husband. I assumed complete responsibility for the shop and for the first time, spent the holidays alone. I had no children, no husband, no family nearby, and too great a debt to allow any travel."
"What did you do?"
"I learned to be thankful for thorns."
Sandra's eyebrows lifted. "Thorns?"
"I've always thanked God for good things in life and I never thought to ask Him why good things happened to me. But when bad stuff hit, did I ever ask! It took time to learn that dark times are important. I always enjoyed the flowers of life but it took thorns to show me the beauty of God's comfort."
Sandra gasped. "I guess the truth is, I don't want comfort. I've lost a baby and I'm angry with God."
Again the door's bell diverted their attention.
"Hey, Phil!" shouted the clerk as a balding, rotund man entered the shop.
She softly touched Sandra's arm and moved to welcome him. "I'm here for twelve thorny longstemmed stems!" Phil laughed, heartily.
"I figured as much," said the clerk. "I've got them ready." She lifted a tissue- wrapped from the refrigerated cabinet.
"Beautiful," said Phil. "My wife will love them."
Sandra could not resist asking, "These are for your wife?"
Phil saw that Sandra's curiosity matched his when he first heard of A Thorn Bouquet.
"Do you mind me asking, Why thorns?"
"In fact, I'm glad you asked," he said. "Four years ago my wife and I nearly divorced. After forty years, we were in a real mess, but we slogged through, problem by rotten problem. We rescued our marriage - our love, really. Last year, at Thanksgiving, I stopped in here for flowers. I must have mentioned surviving a tough process because Jenny here told me that for a long time she kept a vase of rose stems! as a reminder of what she learned from 'thorny' times. That was good enough for me. I took home stems. My wife and I decided to label each one for a specific thorny situation and give thanks for what the problem taught us. I'm pretty sure this stem review is becoming a tradition." Phil paid for the flowers, thanked her again and as he left, said to Sandra, "I highly recommend the Special!"
"I don't know if I can be thankful for the thorns in my life," Sandra said.
"Well, my experience says that thorns make roses more precious. We treasure God's providential care more during trouble than at any other time. Remember, Jesus wore a crown of thorns so that we might know His love. Do not resent thorns."
Tears rolled down Sandra's cheeks. For the first time since the accident she loosened her grip on resentment. "I'll take twelve long-stemmed thorns, please."
"I hoped you would, " Jenny said. "I'll have them ready in a minute. Then, every time you see them, remember to appreciate both good and hard times. We grow through both."
"Thank you. What do I owe you?"
"Nothing but a pledge to work toward healing your heart. The first year's arrangement is always on me." Jenny handed a card to Sandra. "I'll attach a card like this to your arrangement but maybe you'd like to read it first. Go ahead, read it."
My God, I have never thanked you for my thorn! I have thanked you a thousand times for my roses, but never once for my thorn. Teach me the glory of the cross I bear, teach me the value of my thorns. Show me that I have climbed to you by the path of pain. Show me that my tears have made my rainbow. - George Matheson
Jenny said, "Happy Thanksgiving, Sandra," handing her the Special."I look forward to our knowing each other better."
Sandra smiled. She turned, opened the door and walked toward hope.
So, today I will thank my Lord for all - even the 'thorns'!
I was snopping over at Amanda's site and stumbled on her 'all about me' list and thought it was a great idea. So here are 100 things about me...and this was harder than I thought it would be.
1. Saved by God's grace
2. Love my hubby more every day
3...and think he is the hottest when he is all dirty from working
4. Mother of 2 beautiful girls
5. Would like to have a bunch of kids - 6 or 8 - but will probably have 4
6. Love my in-laws, they are awesome
7. Want to have chickens and goats
8...do have a steer
9. I rarely mop/scrub my floors
10. I have the appearance of organization, but don't open some closets in my home
11. I have phone-a-phobia (Joe's word), would rather send an email
12. I'm a lefty
13. I have an in-ground pool and rarely use it
14. I am not a vacationeer and would much rather stay home
15. I yell at my kids too much
16...I'm working on it
17. I'm a red head and have freckles...a lot of them
18. I wore braces for 2 years
19. My favorite show is House
20. I help my hubby run our contracting business
21. I'm in charge of all office related things, scheduling, estimating, calls, etc
22. I do all that at home with my kids every day
23. Some days I don't do it all well
24. I don't miss having a full time (out-of-the-house) job
25. I love my cowboy boots
26...but weather permitting am usually barefoot
27. I'm a t-shirt and jeans kind of girl
28. I gained 50 and 60 lbs during my pregnancies
29...I still haven't lost it all from the last pregancy
30. I feel beautiful when pregnant
31. I attend a small church (100 or so members) and love it
32. Both of my kids have had issues with dairy while nursing...I miss ice cream
33. I love to cook and bake
34...things taste good, but I don't do presentation well
35. I grow a veggie garden, but don't weed very well
36. I make and can a killer good black bean and corn salsa
37...still haven't mastered spaghetti sauce
38. I don't like to shop
39...but love grocery shopping
40. I'm obsessed with books and have many on my shelf that I haven't read yet
41. I try to eat organically as much as possible
42. I use cloth diapers some of the time
43. My children are not vaccinated
44. I love veggies and there isn't much I won't eat
45. My first car was a 1984 Chevy Celebrity
46. I don't like reality shows
47. I spend way too much time on Facebook
48. I'm not a sports kind of gal
49. I love a bargain...garage sales and auctions
50. I've been know to salvage things out of dumpsters as well
51. My love language is 'acts of service'
52. I still send handwritten notes and thank yous
53. I fell out of the car when I was 4 and only have a couple of little scars from it
54. I was a pretty good student and graduated 9th out of 82
55. I love coffee and could drink it all day long
56. I started a Bible Study group with some girlfriends and we meet weekly
57...sometimes I'm really prepared and sometimes I'm not
58. I'm not crafty
59. I would like to learn to knit or crochet
60. I read Dr. Mercola's website often
61. I nursed my oldest until she was 17 months old
62. I had mastitis once and thrush twice
63. I use to be a Diet Coke addict and now can't stand it
64. I don't like Cool Whip
65. I use to be a smoker
66. I'm the oldest of 4
67. I am a procrastinator
68. I love hosting the holidays
69. I could feed my family for many, many months on the food that's in my pantry and freezer
70. I don't mind my husband's snoring
71. I have a nice camera that I don't really know how to use
72. I love cookbooks and often read them from beginning to end like a regular book
73. I collect salt and pepper shakers
74...and old aprons
75. My favorite color is brown
76. I believe in Hell and it scares me that people I know may end up there
77. I love being a wife
78. I love being a mom
79. We decided to buy our home and closed on it within 3 weeks
80. I'm a good project starter, but get lost in the details
81. I really don't like playdoh
82. I listen to christian talk radio everyday
83. I drive a minivan and love it
84. I don't have a lot of close friends
85. I'm a babywearing mama
86. I don't know how to drive a stick
87. I don't trust my own abilities enough
88. I go days without opening my Bible
89. I don't know anyone's number and would not be able to call anyone if I lost my cell
90. I'm staying up way too late to finish this
91. I like mowing the lawn
92. I rarely floss or go to the dentist
93. I've never had a flu shot
94. I don't exercise
95. Sometimes I use the TV as a babysitter
96. I love my kid's eyes
97. I rarely put clean clothes away until I'm out of empty baskets
98. I never iron clothes
99. I love me the older I get
100. I love Jesus
It's Talking about Thursday's over at Genny's blog and today's topic is all about a good read. Have you read a good book lately?
We read a ton around here, but lately its been a bunch of books to the girls. Our favorites are from Sandra Boynton. We have a bunch and read them all often. Our favorites are Barnyard Dance and Moo, Baa, La La La.
Don't forget to snuggle up and read a book with the little ones today!
Sunday - Today I am thankful for a wonderful message at church full of great insight! My favorite from today - We think life should be fair because God is fair...but God and life are not the same thing.
Monday - Today I am thankful for sunshine!
Tuesday - Today I am thankful for baby swings!
Today - Today I am thankful for a good friend, great conversation and a fun playdate!
I don't have the energy to expand on those thoughts at all right now. Sometime soon I will do an entire post on the message at church...it was wonderful! I also have a few million ideas of future posts floating around in my head. Not to mention staying caught up on all the cute, funny and naughty things that the kiddos might just be up to.
I have been deep in pray on where exactly to take this blog...if anywhere besides a journey of our lives and our children growing up or something more!?!
Wanted to leave you with a photo...what would a post be without a photo!
Charlie's cute little socked toes. She almost always picks mismatched socks when she dresses herself.
Ok, so I thought I would give this a try. Not Me! Monday! is a blog idea created by MckMama. You can head on over to her blog to read what she and others have not been up to this last week. There are a ton of links there...so check them out!
I did NOT use the restroom while babywearing just to save maybe waking up babe by putting her down. Who would combine such activites...NOT ME!
I did NOT have the chance to take the above picture at my home...NOT ME! There is no way those rotting pumpkins are still on my front porch..no way, no how, NOT HERE!
And finally, I did NOT wake up in the middle of the night last week and was NOT sure if I was waking up to nurse the baby or waking up because she was now done nursing. No NOT ME...I would never be so tired that I couldn't remember if the baby had been taken care of already.
Knock on wood...Charlie has this toilet training all figured out. She has even been dry the last 2 mornings after having a diaper on for overnight. And even before bedtime with a diaper on she will tell you she needs to go. Do I dare get rid of the diapers all together? I'm thinking so...or is that the lack of sleep talking!?!
She is so dang funny, too! The things she says just crack me up! Yesterday, we were in the bathroom washing hands and she asks about Joe's fast orange soap that is on the counter.
Charlie - "Whered you get it?"
Me - "Target, I think."
Charlie - "On sale!?!"
I do really like getting a deal and I love Target...and apparently I talk about my deal snagging pretty often. Her excited tone when she asked was just priceless!
Earlier today, she had a little gas and I asked her if she tooted. Her reply - "It's stinky too!"
I love that her face is always a little a lot dirty...
...and I love her eyes...did I mention that already?
Have I told you how observant she is. I have told numerous people...don't every tell her something you don't want her to remember, to know or to repeat.
For example, I was sitting on the couch nursing Cori and Charlie grabbed her 'baby' and said she needed to feed her baby too. She crawled up on the couch, lift her shirt and began 'nursing' her baby. Very quickly she got up with her baby still in the nursing position and says - "The phone is ringing. I get it." She has seen me more than once get up while still nursing and answer the phone.
Oh and to hear her pray at bedtime...it is the sweetest thing and a great end to the day! We usually start out with thanking God for the day and for daddy, etc and go from there. She usually rattles out a laundry lists of sorts when you ask who else we should pray for...Travis and Wade, Abby, auntie Jessi, grandma and grandpa, Megan and Maddie, and Jason and Justin and...the list goes on and on!
...and those curls...who won't love those curls!
Oh how the Lord has blessed me! I love you Charlie bean!
Today I am thankful for the nice stranger who lifted the 24lb turkey into my cart at the grocery store. I was babywearing at the time and didn't want to hit babe in the head.
It is also amazing how many people comment and ooohh and aaahh over the babe while she is just hanging out in the wrap.
Check back soon. I've got a couple of different posts in the works. Up next all about my Charlie bean and just how sweet and sassy and funny and smart she is. Hope everyone is having a great weekend. Good bless!
Today I am thankful for my husband! He leaves each morning to work without complaining and is a wonderful provider! I think one of the best things about my Joe is that he is a wonderful husband even when I'm not being a wonderful wife. He is almost always level-headed and calm...good qualities when you live with a sleep deprived crazy woman! He never complains...he's never fussy about meals or how clean the house is. He is appreciative of the things I do and tells me often. The Lord has blessed our family greatly and I love that I get to be Joe's wife! I'm so proud of the man in my life and truely thankful for him!
Yesterday, my friend Danielle posted the following on Facebook.
Let's see how many people can do this. Every day this month until Thanksgiving, think of one thing that you are thankful for and post it as your status. "Today I am thankful for..." The longer you do it, the harder it gets! Now if you think you can do it then repost this message as your status to invite others to take the challenge, then post what YOU are thankful for today.
It got me thinking. I know I should be thankful in all things and I know I'm not always. My goal from here on out is to do just that - BE THANKFUL IN ALL THINGS! So, I thought I would share my thankful thoughts from yesterday and today and then add a 'Today's Thankful Thought' each day from here on out.
Yesterday - Today I am thankful for hot water! (Pauly, the wonderful plumber has been out the last 2 days to work on the water heater and it seems to be working perfect now.)
You don't really think about hot water until you don't have any. We had been having issues with the water heater off and on for a couple of months and it finally quite working the other day. Pauly the plumber was out on Tuesday and replaced the ignitor and all was well. I happily went on to do dishes and laundry the rest of the day. I even got to take a shower...with a 2 year old, but a shower none the less. Joe got in the shower that night and you guessed it - NO hot water. Pauly came out again on Wednesday and replaced some other part and it is working perfectly now! Yeah!
Today - Today I am thankful for a talkative 2 year old. Charlie says the cutest things and it brings a smile to my face!
It is just amazing to me the things that are said in our home. Things you never thought of hearing or saying in your lifetime...but with a 2 year old it all seems so so normal. Just last night I had to tell her..."No, I won't kiss your butt"..."I know you fell down and it hurts"..."But no, I won't kiss your butt." I mean seriously, it is sweet that she thinks a mommy kiss will make it all better, but I have to draw the line somewhere. And this afternoon, she came and told me..."I need to be nakie." I let her take her clothes off...she NEEDED to be after all.
I needed to share a couple of pictures of my beautiful, wonderful girls. I don't think I've posted any all week and what is a blog with out pictures? Mommyhood is hard some days (most days!?!), but I wouldn't trade it for anything. I feel so blessed that I am able to stay home with them and have the opportunity to take pictures of them each and every day.
I can't believe how big she is getting.
The last 3 months have went by so fast.
This picture makes me laugh. And not because Charlie has no clothes on...that's totally normal. Laughable because Joe had just said..."I'm feeling a little claustrophobic here girls." My only thought was - welcome to my world!
Charlie was laying on the floor talking to her baby sister and said..."Mom, take a picture." Why not, can't have too many pictures!
Cori is all about laughing, cooing, and babbling these days.
This is what I get when I ask her to look at me and say 'cheese'.
This isn't a very good picture but I thought it was cute anyways.
Charlie enjoyed her cheesy noodles so much tonight that she thought she would lick the plate.