{giving & receiving}

Isn't giving just way better than receiving? I think so. The morning church service/message was based on just that. Exactly. I am so happy that my hubby and I have decided this year to only get our kiddo's a couple of gifts. (a toy from Santa and something from mommy and daddy) We have decided to help out a client of ours who is about to have his family's utilities shut off due to him being cut from his job. (all because the company wanted a younger person in his place) So sad. Anyway - we felt called to help - and we are. I just love the holidays.
Lord - I thank you for blessing us so that we may help others.



Wow. I somehow find it hard to believe that Thanksgiving will be here in less than a week! Luckily this year we don't have to travel far away to visit relatives. Not that I mind visiting relatives and enjoying their wonderful feast - but having a newborn and a 3 year old in the car for more than an hour is very interesting. ha ha. I sort of like...okay, I love the idea of just being home with my little family. Our plans are to make dinner the day of, watch the Macy's Parade, holiday movies, and after dinner we plan to decorate our townhouse for Christmas. I am so excited! We have a fake Christmas tree - but we are thinking about going to town and picking a real one up. Since it is only $20 dollars for a 6-7' tree. We just need to find a base somewhere.

My sweet little E.J. officially turned 6 weeks old on Wednesday. I can't believe it. Gosh - they grow up fast, don't they? Before I know it my boys will be coming home to tell me they have a girlfriend - then they will graduate college (or whatever the pursue in life) - they will come home and tell me they want to introduce me to the women they want to share the rest of their life with - okay - I need to stop. I am sooooo gonna be in tears here in a second. *sigh* I am savoring every waking hour with these boys. I have realized in the past I took alot of things for granted - including family. With my best friend losing her husband to a car accident almost 2 months ago - I have truly put some things into perspective. I have been digging more and more into the word of God - daily devotions have turned from 10 minutes into hours of reading and studying, and taking notes. I truly want to be more spiritual and have a better, and closer walk with God. I have been a Christian since 1999. I have come in and out of 'peaks' with my spiritual walk. I have never felt more closer to God than I have now - at this stage in my life.

I feel so blessed to have what I have. A loving family, a roof over my head, a car to drive, clothes on my back, and food on my table. What more could I honestly ask of God? Absolutely nothing.

This year - for us - we are celebrating the TRUE meaning of Christmas. That Jesus Christ our Lord was born on Christmas day. We celebrate HIS birthday. We are still decorating for Christmas and truly celebrating like usual - but with more enthusiasm - because now I feel like I'm not a kid anymore. I don't have to have a ton of gifts...not even one for that matter, to make me feel like it is Christmas. Because that is NOT why we celebrate. We aren't getting anyone in our family gifts this year, except for our children, and my best friend and her 2 girls (the one that lost her husband). We will however, give every family member a 'treat bag'. It will include a candy cane, an orange with cloves popped in, and some homemade cookies, and a lovely card. We will be getting our boys 3 or 4 gifts. Our 3 year old will be getting one gift from Santa (which is going to be Olivia's play house set (he reminds us that he wants Santa to bring it to him each time the commercial comes on. ha ha.) My hubby and I plan on getting him a few books from the local bookstore (Richard Scarry, Dr. Seuss, and Olivia...and maybe an Eric Carle). We will fill his stocking with a peppermint stick, an orange, and some little sweeties. Edward, however, is still very young. So we plan to get him a plush toy and a couple of outfits.

Honestly, children these days (in my opinion - no offense to any parents out there, seriously) get too much. Especially at Christmas. The past two years my first born has received enough gifts at Christmas to give 20+ children who are in need a gift of their own. So that is just something we are doing this year. I plan to give my husband one gift - a new coffee maker. He needs one bad. I plan to get him that Keurig one - it is on sale at our local department store. ;) I believe I will be getting bath towels - that is a definite necessity around here! ha ha.

What are some of your favorite traditions? What are you doing different this year? Any NEW traditions being implemented?




Today has perhaps, been the best day I have had in a long time. My children didn't wake me up until 8 a.m. . I am usually up around 6:30 or 7 all on my own. So this was a treat. *smiles* I started to do my daily/normal routine when all of a sudden I thought - "Why don't I do something different today. Be crazy and lazy. Don't worry about FB, email, or my blog. Forget the chores for a while. Why not?"

So - first things first. Shower. (literally a 3 minute shower considering my newborn was crying his eyes out because he was hungry and I still had to sanitize all of his bottles. *sigh*) Dry hair. Change E.J.'s diaper, clothes, and sanitize/fix bottle. Get R.A. changed and breakfast. Bring it upstairs so we can chill up there for a while. Finish watching "The Duchess" while feeding E.J. . Fold 2 baskets of laundry. Put folded laundry away. Clean out t.v. stand. (what a mess. uggh.) Sort through all Gerber Graduate items and stock 'em away in closet. (all were on sale at my Market this past week. Puffs, Crunchies, Teething biscuits, and Arrowroot cookies each only $1.00!!) If you are a mom of a sitting baby/toddler you know how much these cost regular price!! Figured I'd get a jump on things since they are good till 2013!! *winks*) Mopped bathroom floor. Took out bathroom trash. Straightened hair. (did all of these while E.J. was napping after his bottle. *wink*) Popped in "Toy Story III" and "Veggie Tales Jonah" for R.A. while mommy did all of this. Sorted dirty clothes. Made the beds. Played with E.J. and his baby toys, it is amazing how responsive he is already! He loves looking at each item I pull out and he really acts like he is listening. *grins*

{moves downstairs}

Wash bottles. Sanitize bottles. Clean countertops. (E.J. is in his bouncer at this point. R.A. is listening to Christmas music in the LR.) Fix lunch. Today was lean cuisine lasagna and salad for mommy - a ham and cheese lunchable for R.A.. Pop laundry in the washer. Check FB. Check email. Pop laundry in the dryer - put another in the wash. Take out trash to dumpster. Check blog. Oh wait - here we are at this very second! ;) I just love my days with my boys. I have found that if I simply put them first at all times - I get soooo much more done that way. *winks* I think now my days are going to be upstairs first half - and downstairs second half. It makes it easier on mommy at night - that way when I head upstairs at bedtime, I'm not stuck with folding, sorting, and putting away a ton of launry, cleaning, and showering. *whew*

What a relaxing day. Today truly is a great day. Thank you Lord for your many blessings.




drip drip drop

Normally, I don't like the rain. However, today seemed like the perfect day for rain. Not that I was having a bad morning or anything. I woke up in a great mood and the kids were and are behaving wonderfully. It just seems like a 'rainy' sort of day - ya know? First thing on the agenda today was get to the hospital for E.J.'s one month appointment.

5 weeks 5 days old
10 lbs 5 oz
Appointment went well - doc says E.J. is a perfect, healthy, happy baby boy. *smiles big* Now we are home, listening to Christmas music and enjoying our day. Indoors. Soaking up the toasty heat. I love cuddling with my boys on the couch - with the throw pillows and a nice fuzzy blanket. Or a big handmade quilt from Grandma's collection. It may be tattered and worn...but it serves its purpose quite well, thank you. *giggles* Getting ready to make us some lunch and watch our 1 1/2 hours of television. We are on week 2 of only watching 1 - 1 1/2 hours of television per day. It has been the best thing I've done for me and my family. My husband has even taken all his shows off of the DVR and no longer watches t.v. at night. Instead - he spends quality time with me and the boys. We read, do devotions, color, play with blocks, puzzles, and toys, and just enjoy our family. It has opened my eyes so much. Taking time away from our cell phones, laptops, and iPods. It is just amazing. I would recommend anyone doing it if you have a famiily - try it out just for a day even. It makes a HUGE difference. *winks*
Happy Monday everyone!


{praise & worship}

Isn't it amazing how you can feel so down and out and then your friends, church family, and even your fellow bloggers pull together and save the day? I also enjoyed today's praise and worship/message. It was just the right thing I needed to hear today. *smiles* I am so blessed to have you all in my life. God's grace is enough for me - I am learning that. For sure. Thank you all for your kindness and prayers.


This week:

E.J.'s 1 month check-up.

Women's devotional night.

Family night.

pretty good week I'd say.




I just love pomegranates. Yum-O. I enjoyed one of these babies last night as a mid-night snack. Well...a 10:00 p.m. snack. lol. I love FALL. Autumn brings us such wonderful fruits and goodies. *smiles* Well I am happy to say that I am a member of a family of 4 now. My husband and sons R.A. and E.J. Life is good. I absolutely love my family. I am proud to be a stay-at-home mommy too. *smiles big* This year we are finally starting some new Holiday 'traditions'.

  • Put up and decorate our Christmas tree on Thanksgiving night.

  • Play Christmas music every day from Thanksgiving night through Christmas day.

  • String popcorn on the tree Christmas Eve.

  • Bake all sorts of homemade sweeties Christmas Eve.

Aah. The holidays. I just love them - don't you?


{1 month}

{1 month}

Wow. How time flies, huh? It seems just like yesterday I was sitting in the labor and delivery room waiting for our sweet baby E to arrive. *tear* He is doing great! He sleeps at night very well, aside from 2 feedings. One around 2:30 a.m. and another around 6 a.m. Life is good. *wink* Breastfeeding didn't go as planned. It was going soooo well, then all of a sudden he started getting super fussy...and gassy. *frowns* So, his pediatrician put him on Similac Isomil Soy. He is doing much better now, thank the good Lord. *smiles* Perfect timing too - because my milk production has been low. Very low. Dislike. Overall, he is a healthy, happy, baby boy. That makes me one happy momma.

R.A. is doing well. He is adjusting alot better now. He is even helping out. I guess he just had to get past the one month mark. Ha ha. He loves to give E 'pats' on the head, and soft kisses. *smiles* He helps me get diapers and things when needed as well. He still wants all of the attention, but is managing and coping alot better with the attention time we give him. Overall, he is doing fabulous with new baby brother. Life is good. *smiles big*

{urbanfarmgirl has an awesome giveaway sweeps right now - check it out for a chance to win a $50 pottery barn gift card!!}


{mommy must-haves}

{mommie's must-haves}

[idea from: shannanigans]

.boppy pillow.

I use this to breastfeed, bottle feed, and just to have my little E.J. lounge.

.Dr. Brown's bottles.

I absolutely love these! They don't make bubbles - and it really helps reduce colic and gas. I actually stir my formula in the water with a spoon, then let it sit with the lid and cap on for just a minute to let it all settle (to reduce air/bubbles). (if I do see bubbles, I open up lid, then replace it...and let it sit for a minute then feed E.J.)

.Boppy Bouncer.

I love this! Couldn't do without it. (well I probably could, but wouldn't want to.) It has vibrations and music. E.J. loves sitting in it during the day. :)

.Lansinoh Nursing Pads.

I will only buy the lansinoh brand. I have tried a few others, and they just soak through too quickly, or they stick to my nipples. Let me tell you - that is NO picnic. Uggh.

.Avent bottle sterilizer.

I also have Avent bottles, so I use this sterilizer for those bottles. All I do is rinse them out after a feeding (using my bottle brush of course), then pop them in the sterilizer with 7 oz. of water in the bottom, pop it in the microwave for 2 minutes and VOILA. Sterilzed bottles. ;)

.Avent Bottle/Food Warmer.

I love this product! Plug it in. Turn knob to #3. Have water no higher than milk in bottle, and in about 2 minutes I have a warm bottle of milk! :) One happy momma.

.Avent Pacifiers.

These are great - and they are 'simply cute'. :) I also think they are the best because they come with plastic cover caps. ;) I have many other 'must-haves', but for some reason I am unable to load the pictures on my page properly and it takes me forever to get them aligned properly. But the items include:

    Vera Bradley 'purple punch' diaper bag.

    Carter's sleepers.

    Carter's two piece clothing sets.

    Cloth diapers (I use these tucked inside my maternity bra while I am bf-ing. It eleminates leakage onto my clothes.)


    Gerber cloth burp cloths. (just like the cloth diapers - love them.)

    Huggies Little Snugglers size NB.

    Purell Hand Sanitizer.

    What are some of your 'must-haves' for your kiddos?

    {saturday fun & cinnamon swirl bread}

    {cinnamon swirl bread}

    Today is perhaps one of my favorite days. Ever. Aahh. Saturdays are simply the best.

    • Husband is home all weekend.

    • He helps take care of my 3 year old while I am on newborn duty. ;)

    • We pick up the 5 for $20 from Blockbuster.

    • Eat pizza.

    • Cuddle on the couch all day.

    • Sort through the many loads of laundry.

    • Never look at the clock.

    Tomorrow I will make my cinnamon swirl loaf.

    {on to another subject}

    - baby food diet -

    Alot of you have probably heard of the 'baby food diet' that Jennifer Aniston supposedly went on to 'cleanse' her body of all the junk and nasties. Well, I even read in a baby magazine that I recently received in the mail, that a Daddy (one of the editors in the magazine) decided to try it out for a week. Here is the gist:

    • Eat 14 jars of Gerber baby food each day for 7 days.

    • Eat a regular size dinner - drink your normal 6-8 glasses (8 oz.) of fluids/day.

    At the end of 48 hours this guy lost 5 lbs. After the last day, day seven, he had lost a total of 6-8 lbs.

    I am personally trying this out for 3 days just to see if I feel better. Cleansed, so to speak. We will see what happens. Good thing is, the baby food tastes great! I love the fruits and oatmeals they now provide. ;) I would never dream of doing this as a 'lifestyle', however, as a monthly cleanse...I think it is a wise thing to do...and it gets your digestive system working properly if not already. (works pretty much like eating Activia once a day.)

    Here we go!


    trick or treat

    {Me and my little giraffe}

    - - Well Halloween was fun this year. Probably because we were able to spend it with my best friend and her two adorable little girls. (who just lost her husband in September) Hubs and I took our oldest over to their subdivision to trick or treat. They had a blast! I confess...so did I. ;) Our little munchkin is growing up so fast. He got soooo much candy. He'll be hopped up for a while. lol. How was everyone's Halloween? What did your kid (s) dress up like? - -

    {E - too cute to SPOOK}

    A friend of mine got this onesie and bib for my baby shower. I absolutely love it! He enjoyed his time at mamaw's while daddy and I took big brother trick or treating. It was just too cold to take this lil guy out and about. I adore these shoes from Old Navy too...I love owls!

    Tomorrow is the big day...E will be 1 month old! I can't believe it!