Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I'm the Parent of a ....

TEENAGER! Today is Beth's 13th Birthday! We're calling this her "Princess Birthday." I'll explain more about that Friday. I don't want her to read anything she shouldn't yet. ;o)

She is such a blessing in our lives, and I'm so thankful that God allowed us to raise her!

I love you Beth!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Postcards Across America

As I mentioned in a much earlier post, Ben is doing a state history project where he is collecting postcards from all 50 states. These are the states we still need:

Georgia (I can't believe that!)
New Jersey
New Mexico
North Dakota
South Dakota
West Virginia

(I do have a Hoover Dam postcard that I can use for Nevada, but we're trying to get the state on the front of all the postcards.)

Do you live in one of these states??? ;o)

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Puzzle of the Day

Click on the puzzle if you want to scramble it and put it together. It will take you to the Jigzone puzzle page though. Come on back after you solve it and tell me what you think.

Click to Mix and Solve

Saturday, November 24, 2007

My Family Life

Perri found this in a Family Circle magazine in a section entitled "My Family Life" and posted the questions on her blog. If you answer the questions on your blog, let me know...

I don't want my children to be spoiled so I make sure they...
Do chores ... even the stuff they don't wanna do, and we don't give them everything they want.

I may not be a perfect chef, but my kids love it when I cook....
just about anything! But they especially love anything Mexican I make.

I felt like Super Mom when I .....
gave birth to my children!

I realized I had turned into my mom when I heard myself say.....
"Your eyes are going to stick that way!"

They may not thank me now, but when they're older my children will thank me for....
Making them work around the house and do their school work!

My proudest moment as a mom was...
Wow, there are so many. I guess anytime they think of others before themselves.

My most prized gift from my children are...
Besides stretch marks??? The photo collage they gave me for Mother's Day this year.

My kids know not to interrupt me when....
I'm taking a nap. ;o)

Okay...let me know your answers!


I finally signed up for Bloglines and I really like it. I have a little icon at the bottom of my page that alerts me when one of the blogs I read has a new message. Pretty cool! I don't have to surf all over the net trying to find out who has blogged.

The downside to Bloglines is that some of my friends also have it, and they don't post on my blog much anymore. I can understand because you can read the post on your Bloglines page, but I miss my friends coming and letting me know they were there! So, if you are one of those friends, please pop on over every now and then and leave me a message! I need the encouragement. :o)

It was her lucky day!

I went hunting with my husband yesterday. That's a first for me! I grew up with hunters, but had never gone hunting.

Neal is not a hunter. He doesn't enjoy it, but we enjoy venison and we're all out! So Neal went hunting yesterday morning and was gone four hours. He didn't see one deer. Then yesterday around 4:00, he and I set out to see if we could get one in the late evening hours. We walked back on our property and found a spot on the side of the hill up above the big creek, just below the meadow. I carried a blanket for us to sit on (and boy was I glad I did, because that ground was cold). We sat there for almost an hour with only seeing a squirrel. Then I see Neal's hand slowly come over and grab my knee and with a slight nod he showed me where the deer was standing. After my eyes adjusted to the area he was nodding toward, I could see her standing there. Then she slowly turned her head and looked at me. Right in the eye (or so it seemed). She was so beautiful! I thought "how can we shoot her? Maybe I should make a sudden movement and save her life." Then I remembered...."doe season doesn't start until tomorrow."

It was her lucky day!

Neal just left to go hunting again this morning. I had to stay home because I have a cough and it's pretty bad in the mornings. For some reason he didn't want me out there hacking and coughing! I bet that doe will wish I had come!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

The Spirit of Christmas Award

My friend Amy, awarded me with The Spirit of Christmas Award. I was very touched and honored when I read what this means:

"This award is for those who talk about and show the spirit of Christmas in their blogs.

What is the Spirit of Christmas you ask?

Quite simply it is those that have a generous and giving nature. Those who care about others. Those who have a kind word to say or a broad shoulder to lean on in the times that others need that. Those who display the “Spirit of Christmas”.

I am giving it to five and you should too. Those that have touched your heart with their kind and giving and caring nature."

I want to give this award to the five following bloggers, because they are so good at encouraging and lifting me up...even if it's just through my reading their blogs, or nice comments they leave on my blog. Thank you, Amy....

Marsha at Our Homeschool and Other Such Happenings

Perri at My Life in Bits and Pieces

Jenny at Virginia's Family Adventures

Angie -- Even though she doesn't have a blog, she exemplifies the Spirit of Christmas Award. She does have a website for her face painting business though -- Faces Alive.

Beth -- my lovely daughter, even though it would be nice if she blogged more often!

Woo Hoo

Isn't it great to get money in the mail? Ben got this card from his Uncle Darrell and Aunt Jan.

On the inside it said "Feel Free to Woo Hoo" and he did!

Thank you Darrell and Jan! The Wii fund is almost complete!
Here are some pictures that Beth and I took of each other last Friday.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Things That Make You Go Hmmmm......

I read this on Amy's blog and thought it would be fun to do.

The rules are: Use the first letter of your name to answer each of the questions. They must be real places, names, things … nothing made up! If you can’t think of anything, skip it. You CAN’T use your name for the boy/girl name question. If your name happens to start with the same letter as mine, sorry, but you can’t use my answers! So join in the fun…

My name: Teresa
Famous Singer: Tony Orlando (that's a blast from the past!)
Four letter word: Trip
Street: Taylor St.
Color: Tan
Gifts/Presents: Toys
Vehicle: Taurus
Things in a Souvenir Shop: taxes
Boy’s Name: Tony
Girl’s Name: Toni
Movie Title: Top Gun
Drink: Tea
Occupation: Taxicab Driver
Celebrity: Tom Hanks
Magazine: The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
City: Tallahassee
Pro Sports: Tennis
Fruit: Tangerine
Reason for Being Late for Work: Tire was flat
Something You Throw Away: Toenails
Things You Shout: Totally!
Cartoon Character: Tom (as in Tom & Jerry)

TAG! If you’re reading this and want to Participate, then you’re tagged! But please let me know you did it so I can come read your answers! It’s fun to do!

Beth's Bed

There are three things to look at here.

1. The bed -- we moved Beth into this bed a month or two ago. She had a single bed, and really wanted a full size. This bed was the bed Neal and I used for the first 8 or 9 years of our marriage, and it used to belong to his great-grandfather.

2. The blanket -- this blanket came from South Korea. Beth's grandparents had a friend of ours who is in the military buy it this past spring when he was in Korea. They saved it for her birthday (well, almost....they gave it to her a month or two early when she got the bed) It is the softest blanket!

3. The cat -- that is Beth's pride and joy -- and my adversary! He is beautiful on the outside, but not so much on the inside. The only time he's friendly to us is first thing in the morning when he needs to rub on someone/something, and when he's cold. Otherwise, forget it!


We had our November birthday dinner at my in-laws last night, and I made this cheesecake. Perri gave me the recipe, and it is pretty good. I didn't process the graham cracker crumbs long enough, so the crust doesn't look too good. I also cut back on the amount of chocolate chips to one cup, and it was still rich enough.

Can anyone tell me how to move a cheesecake off of the springform pan bottom and onto a plate? I always keep it on the pan, but if I wanted to make one for someone else, I wouldn't know how to transfer it.

Mom's Birthday

Sunday was Mom's birthday. She turned 73! When we got home from church we fired up the grill and grilled ribeye steaks and I made baked sweet potatoes and green beans. For dessert I made a peach cobbler! Yum!
Mom and I holding the card I made for her

I loved this picture of Mom and Ben walking back to the car after the Veteran's Day ceremony

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Veteran's Day

Sunday, November 11th, was Veteran's Day, but since it was on a Sunday this year it was observed on Monday. The kids and I have been doing a unit study this past week about Veteran's Day. It's been a good study, and now they have a better grasp of what our soldiers are doing and what the soldiers in the past have done for our country. Whether a person supports the war or not, our soldiers are all around the world protecting our freedoms. So support our troops! My friend Perri put this link on her blog. Go to it and you can easily send a soldier a post card! It will take about 30 seconds. I don't think that's too much to ask of us sitting here in our comfortable chairs, is it?

Yesterday Mom and I took the kids to a local Veteran's Day ceremony. For those of you who don't know, my Mom is a veteran. She served in the U.S. Army for two years, from November 10, 1954, until November 9, 1956. She had the rank of Corporal when she finished. I'm very proud of my Mom. Her Mom had 11 children....8 sons and 3 daughters. All 8 sons and 1 daughter served in the military. Some were prisoners of war, and some were wounded, but all came home. Not every parent was that blessed.

Here are some pictures from yesterday:

This is the monument where we gathered

Mom, Beth, and Ben remembering our soldiers

A Veteran saluting as his branch of the military is called out

The Ragged Old Flag (click here to hear this poem/song that they sang while we gazed at this ragged flag)

Monday, November 12, 2007

Another Birthday

Ben is turning 10 tomorrow! I can't believe my "baby" is 10 years old! Where does time go???

Our kids get to have birthday party's on their "even" birthdays, so this was Ben's year to have a birthday party! We had a "Super Hero Training Camp" party on Saturday. He invited 8 boys and they all came! It started at 12:30 and they made their masks. Beth had made several different templates for them to choose from, and then they could decorate them any way they wanted. After the masks, they made posters for a little 10 year old boy named Seth who is having open heart surgery later this month. You can read more about him here. Ben really loved the idea of having everyone make posters for Seth. I came to the realization (again) though that boys really are very different than girls. If I had planned for the girls to make a mask and make a poster, I could have counted on at least an hour to do both of those things(probably longer). Some of the boys were finished after 15 minutes! And, yes, you can tell which ones by looking at their masks and posters. LOL

After that activity we were going to eat, but these dark clouds started rolling in, so we decided to do our outside activities first. They started out with calesthenics, then went to the monkey bars to see how fast they could cross them, then tug of war, and then relay races. By the time the boys finished all of these activities, they were famished. We had hot dogs, chips, carrot sticks and rootbeer. (guess how many kids ate carrot sticks? ONE!) Then we had cupcakes and ice cream cups for dessert. One of the kids suggested making rootbeer floats, so some of them did that.

Back outside for a little more play time, and then time to open the presents! Instead of the typical "open my gift first!" problems, I had them play a game. They all sat in a circle, and I gave one of them a miniature pumpkin (any small object will do). I turned on the music and they started passing the pumpkin. When the music stopped, Ben opened the gift of the boy holding the pumpkin. The kids loved it, and it cut down on a lot of annoying whining! ;o)

After the party, 5 of the 8 boys went with us to a Fall Fest out at a farm. A family in our Sunday school class has our class out every fall and we have hay rides and a chili/soup dinner. They clean out their barn and set up tables and hay bales and we have a great time talking, eating, and going on hayrides. We usually have a bon fire, but this year there's a burning ban because it's so dry.

Finally, both Ben and Beth had a friend spend the night. The boys had fun playing with Ben's new toys, and the girls and I drew/colored pictures for Seth until 11:30. :o) It's fun to sit down a draw pictures!

Happy Birthday, Ben! I love you!!!

No cake this year...just cupcakes (Much Easier!!!)

Here are some of the boys making masks. Neal's looking at the sky to see if it's going to rain! (It didn't, btw!!!)

Here are all the boys. Ben's the one in the short sleeve shirt and fist in the air!

Here they are passing the pumpkin.

One thing I forgot to mention is that each boy jumped on the trampoline and gave us their "super hero pose." I thought this one of Ben was cool, even though you can't see his head. "I'm FLYING!"

Ben running his relay. Go Ben!

Birthdays, Birthdays, Everywhere!

Neal's 41st birthday was last Tuesday...November 6th....Election Day. Poor fella, he works part time for the Registrar's Office in our county and he had to get up at 4:00 Tuesday morning and didn't get home until a little past 10:30 that night! Not much of a birthday!

Since Tuesday and Wednesday were a bust (after work Wednesday he crashed), we decided to celebrate on Friday. I made him one of his favorite dinners: Spicy Curry Chicken and Cous Cous. I made some Flan for dessert (I cheated though -- I used the Jello mix. Shhhh...) Then we went to a play at a local college. They put on a very good production of The Rainmaker. After the play we went to Dairy Queen for a post-play dessert ;o). We all had a great time celebrating with "Daddy."

Friday, November 9, 2007

Who's Smarter than a 4th Grader?

(Observation made by my "almost" 10 year old)

Ben: "If I were on the tv show "Ten Years Younger" I'd disappear."

Thursday, November 8, 2007


For those of you who know my mom, and know she's been having some health issues, I have good news. She had to go to the hospital today for an invasive procedure to check her heart. It wasn't a catherization. They actually went in through her throat and did an ultrasound from the inside. The doctor did an echocardiogram last week and found something unusual at the back of her heart. He couldn't get a good picture of it, so he scheduled todays procedure. It only took about 15 minutes for the test, and then he came out and told me she was fine. He thinks the abornormality with her heart has probably been there since birth. Everything looks fine!

So, after about 3 weeks of going through different tests, it looks like she's free and clear! Thank you, Lord!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Awana Grand Prix

Last Saturday at church we had our annual Awana Grand Prix! Each car kit is five bucks, and you start out with the same size block of wood and set of wheels. Then you can let your imagination fly! There are three categories: Racing Style, Creative Style, and speed. Each grade (3rd - 6th) gets 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place in each category. Here's a shot of most of the 3rd and 4th grade cars (they weren't all put out yet):

Here's Ben's "Batmobile." He and his Daddy worked very hard on this car and had hours of fun together! (That's the best part)

This is the track they raced on. One of the men in our church made it several years ago, and it is awesome!

Ben was so happy and surprised to get 1st place in Racing Style in the 4th grade division!

Mr. G and his friend Danny Doolittle entertained us before the race. Mr. G (a former Word of Life missionary) gave a short devotional, as well.

Here are some of the creative 5th and 6th grade cars:
Tow Mater (From the movie Cars)


Hay Wagon


Taters & Maters

Neal planted sweet potatoes for me again this year. I say he planted them for "me" because it's true. He hates sweet potatoes! That's one of his "love gifts" to me. Not only is it a true love gift by planting them, he also eats them when I make them. He does admit though that our home grown sweet potatoes taste better than any store bought we've ever had.

My favorite way to make them is bake them, but with some of these 'taters, they're just way too big to bake.

To give you a better perspective on how big they are, look at them next to the tomatoes. These babies are huge! And we have a ton of them! There are some that are normal size, and I'll use them for baking.

I took "one" of these potatoes Saturday and washed, peeled (let me tell you, that was a job!), and thinly sliced it. Then I put the slices on two cookies sheets, salted them, and baked them until they were crisp. Sweet potato chips! Yummy!!!

Neal's favorite way for me to make them is to mash them like regular potatoes. I think he plays a game of pretend when he's eating them and imagines that they are white! LOL

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Made in China?

I found this on Virginia's site and cracked up!

Another toy recall?


Ben was scheduled to have tryouts for our church's basketball team last night. The church league (the churches involved in the area) changed the rules this year and each child has to play at least 2 quarters each game. That's good and bad. Good thing is the obvious ... each child gets to play half the game, but the bad side is that they have to limit the amount of kids who can play per team. So they told us only 8 kids could play on a team and any over that would have to be cut. :o( This league is for 4th through 6th graders, and this is Ben's first year to play.

When we arrived last night for tryouts, one of the first things I heard was that their were 16 boys that wanted to play! Yaah!!! Eight kids per team, so we had enough for two teams -- and NO CUTS! WooHoo!!!! So instead of tryouts, they had a skills night! Ben's coach is his friend Luke's dad. He was really excited about that! He was nervous about who is coach would be because he had a bad coach one time and it spoiled the game! (this was baseball a few years ago) So anyway, looks like the next few months will be filled with bouncing balls!!!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Too much FOX news???

At the Awana Grand Prix on Saturday (which I promise to blog about very soon) we all had to say the Pledge of Allegiance. As I was standing there saluting the flag and proudly lifting my voice in pledge, I heard this come out of my mouth: "I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republican for which it stands..."

Can you tell I've been thinking about elections too much lately? LOL

Saturday, November 3, 2007


You have got to see this video clip over at Amy's blog. It's an amazing performance of Casting Crown's song "Who Am I." Check it out: HERE

Tell me what you think. I thought it was totally amazing and beautiful!

November 2, 1957

Fifty years ago yesterday....November 2, Mom and Dad were married in Liberty, Indiana. My Dad worked for General Motors in the factory for over 30 years, and Mom stayed home with my two brothers and I. They raised us in a small town in Ohio where everyone knew everyone else, and we could ride our bikes and roam the neighborhood without fear. If we did anything wrong everyone knew who we were, so our parents were bound to find out! Mom and Dad moved into that house around 1964 with their two sons, and then had me in 1966. They sold the house in 1991 (after we were all on our own) and moved to Myrtle Beach, SC...their favorite vacation spot.

Mom and Dad had a good life together for almost 45 years, and then my dad passed away in 2002. Mom lives near us now (right downstairs actually) and has very good memories of her husband. We wished her a Happy Anniversary yesterday...bittersweet.

Looking back, I'm thankful we had a little celebration for their 40th anniversary. I was great with child (less than 2 weeks from delivery), so they came to our house in Georgia, along with one of my brothers and his wife. We all had a really nice weekend together.

If Dad were still alive, I'm sure this weekend would have been filled with celebrating the marriage the Lord gave to my parents!

Thursday, November 1, 2007


Last night in the gym at church:

Ben: "I have some bad news."

Me: "What is it?"

Ben: "I was in the bathroom stall changing into my costume before church when I heard a few splashes."

Me: (dreading to hear the answer) "What was it?"

Ben: "The first two splashes were my gloves, but the last one was my Awana book!"

Me: (groan)

Ben: "But I hadn't used the bathroom in there yet!"

Thank goodness for the little blessings! :o)

(we now have a new Awana book, even though the water was "clean." LOL)
Jeremiah 29:11

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."