Dots, Finishing, Overnights, and Skunks: Random Reflections 2-26-2018


Happy Monday Night!! I had some things that had to be done this morning and afternoon AND I have two sick pre-teen boys.  As in the stomach kind of sick and boy am I glad they are not little  and missing the bucket!

And now that I have totally grossed you out, let’s get on with this past weeks Reflections.


This arrived today. We have been in state of busy-ness over the last 6-8 months. And what once worked (chore charts broken down by days) no longer works so after much searching and countless conversations about how to simplify…and our system was pretty simple, we came upon this little gem.  I will be honest it was pricey.  BUT after researching materials I couldn’t make it much cheaper.  So this all inclusive system will be tested out.  This is not a sponsored post.  I need to add the pictures of each family member to the top row.  BUT outside of that it is pretty much complete.   It comes complete with everything you need except scissors and glue.  The Whole family is excited to give it a try .  It moves away from an allowance system and goes more towards a family store (you can still incorporate concepts of tithing and giving).  Be watching for my honest review of this in the next month or two- and updates as we work out the kinks and make it useable for our family .  You can check out Family Do Dots here.

#2- Finishing (well)

At the end of this last year….ok so if I’m honest it started when we got home from our last vacation in August, I struggled with some …eh…not sure what you would want to call it, but I had some tasks that I wanted to accomplish and they just never got finished.  As the new year rolled around I began my annual goal setting routines and I hit a road Block.  I kept coming back to those unfinished tasks.  So as I am planning for upcoming months I have decided to finish up those goals.  I think I really struggle with  time frames.  I think that if I haven’t finished something in my allotted time I just give up and move on.  This year I have realized that it does not have to be 6 months or 12 months.  They are my goals, so what if they don’t happen in the  12 months I thought it should take.  I am my own worst critic.  So this year I want to not put so much pressure on myself and finish some of the goals I stared last year and have less goals overall this year.  I want  to remember 2 things 1) Progress over Perfection and 2). It only matters how well you finish not WHEN you finish.

#3-Youth Group Overnights

I have loved youth group overnights since I was a teenager and our church did lock-ins.  I have very fond memories of playing water balloon volleyball in the gym of my middle school where I attended (amongst other crazy games courtesy of my youth leaders Robin, Brenda, Gerry and Jennifer) and for the last couple. of years I have had the privilege of helping lead the youth group and now am co-leader with my hubby.   Usually a couple of  things lead to crazy sleep deprivation like not being able to nap before the overnight.  I just couldn’t I would lay down but nothing would happen. I would just stare at the ceiling.  Then I would either be up all night or most of the night, come home and have to leave again for some long scheduled  meeting or something.  That happened on the lsat 3 or 4 overnights . SoI end up being awake from Friday at 5 or 6 in the morning til Saturday  at 7 or 8 at night.  The result is almost a half week of just wanting to sleep all the time.  Well this time was different.  This time I peeked in a four hour nap.  Stayed up ALL night with only 1 cup of coffee.  I came home and went to bed at like 7:30 or 8 am and slept until 1:30.  Great right HA! One would think But just like that newborn coming home from the hospital my days and nights are mixed up.  I still love overnights and I will continue doing them  as long as I can.  And to be completely honest I can deal with my days and nights mixed up better that just being exhausted for a week!

#4- Skunks

I know I have said it before but we live in the middle of nowhere.  Wildlife is a part of our life.  Deer, rabbits, squirrels, wild turkeys, ducks, geese, raccoons, ferrel cats, coyotes, eagles, hawks, pheasants, frogs, turtles, rats, bats, mice, opossums, foxes , snakes and skunks.  We have them all, and who knows there could be some other fun creatures lurking around our house.

But this last week some poor soul hit a skunk right in front of our house.  I woke up to this terrible smell and blamed the dog.  I was wrong.  Our WHOLE house wreaked of the striped nocturnal beast. Hubby wonderfully moved the skunk from in front of our house to the woods.  Some comments were made about it looking like it was digging a hole in the middle of the road (only my brothers and dad will get THAT  reference)  We have had some skunk activity BUT wow.  Then two nights later I needed something from our truck so I opened the front door and I was hit with tear inducing stench.  SERIOUSLY!  There was no dead skunk this time BUT some poor soul, or animal met with the wrong end of that variegated vermin, and I wasn’t’t about to be victim  #2!

I chuckle to myself as I thought back to a camping trip as a teenager.  In a matter of a couple of hours we had seen 20-30 skunks.  we called it the year of the skunk.  My brothers and I ran into one at dusk  that resulted in a three stooges moment where the first one stopped dead in his tracks and the other two of us ran into the one in front of us.  Then on the way back to the campsite (my brothers ditched me) in the dark armed with nothing but a small flashlight heard something in the underbrush next to me .  I flashed the light expecting to see a deer or bear but instead was met with the beady black eyes of a skunk just a few feet away.  I ran.  I got to the campsite where my parents had been watching skunks (yes Plural) at the edge of the forrest.  Mom and I ran into yet another skunk as we headed towards the shower house before going to bed and upon returning we found my dad in the van…..a skunk ran across his foot.  Sometime in the middle of the night my dad and I were  awakened by the most hideous noises I have ever heard while camping.  we went to the window of our TENT and saw the biggest raccoon (he had to duck to get out from under the picnic table) and a bunch of skunks fighting over the watermelon seeds we had spit onto the ground at dinner.  I whispered “dad what happens if they spray”?  My dad  whispered back “We go home”.  In all of the skunk sightings we never once got sprayed, we finished out our vacation with not another skunk sighting.  Funny how smelling that awful  stench brings back such funny memories!

How about you?  What randomness has happened in your life this week? and I look forward to sharing again next week!

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Happy Homemaker Monday- 2-26-2018


Happy Monday Friends.  It’s been two weeks already!  Wow!  Last week was CRAZY!  And it went out with a bang.  Both on a great note and on a not so great note.

More about that in a few minutes .  I can’t believe it is the end of February already.  This year is flying by!

So let’s get started with the last Happy Homemaker of February

The weather:::.

The next few days are really supposed to be very spring like! (I am so excited!!)
As I look outside my window:::

I see brown. Mud. ICK!
Right now I am:::

Listening to my husband as he watches a movie I recommended.
Thinking and pondering:::

how long my poor kiddos will be tossing their cookies
On my bedside table::: pens and a journal
On my tv:::

On the menu for this week:::
Monday – Chicken and Pasta
Tuesday – chicken Tortellini Soup
Wednesday – Pork BBQ and potato Wedges
Thursday – Mc & Cheese
Friday –  Chili
Saturday – Grilled Cheese
Sunday – Salad (for fellowship dinner)
On my to do list:::

the kitchen needs a deep deep cleaning, laundry, my bedroom needs straightened
What I am sewing, crocheting, knitting or creating:::

My newest Cricut project is a coffee mug with vinyl on it that says “Coffee is my Love Language”
My simple pleasure:::

Reading outside and I am definitely hoping to do some of that this week
Lesson learned the past week:::

I still can pull an overnighter with the teens.  No movies and no sleep.  I love them.  and this time I didn’t have anything crazy to do afterwards so I came hoe and slept.
Looking around the house:::

I have a whole bunch of work that needs to be done pretty much everywhere .  and the sick toll has reached four. Me and Hubby are over it  and Child 1 and 3 have it now.  With each person it seems to change slightly.
From the camera:::

Just a snippet of the youth group overnight
Prayer List:::

Friends Family and church members who are sick and/ or going through Hard times
Bible verse, Devotional:::

Titus 27-9 NIV

In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.

Teach slaves to be subject to their masters in everything, to try to please them, not to talk back to them

These are my verses to go with my word for the Year…INFLUENCE!!  I am trying to keep them forefront as I go about my days.

For more Happy Homemaker Monday Posts check out Diary of aStay At Home  Mom.


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END IT- More Than Just a Red X- Shine a Light on Slavery Day

End It





That’s what the red X on my had is for.

End It

There are millions around the word who are sporting red Xs on their hands today for Shine a Light onSlavery Day! But my X on my hand serves more than just awareness.   It serves as a reminder of my commitment to fight for the women in my community.  It reminds me to pray for the women who have touched my life with their stories and it  serves as a reminder to pray for those trapped in the horrible bondage.   It’s more than just a red X.

Have you ever met a slave? It is likely you have-you just never realized it. How about someone who has escaped the grips ofHuman Trafficking or the sex slave industry?  also not unlikely.They look just like you and me.  But the scars are deep.  I have held one of the most beautiful babies born to a girl drugged and held captive in a hotel room. She chose life.   People look at me and say not in my community NO that can’t be.   If you are sitting at your computer reading this and say that YOU are WRONG!

It happens everyday…everywhere!  No place is exempt.

Have you heard of the End it Movement?  @enditmovement #endit

#shinealightonslavery and  A21 Check them out!

These Organizations are fighting to find and free women, teenagers and young children all around the world from the sex slave and human trafficking industry.The stories are remarkable and every time I see a post reading 19 girls rescued today my heart leaps for joy!  but their ministry doesn’t end there.  They then help rehabilitate and provide counseling for these young women as they return to their homes.

You can find out more about what tase amazing organizations are  doing around the world to free children, children like yours and mine.  Children who have had their innocence robbed, stolen away by the inhuman.

I live in the middle of nowhere…..seriously from my window I see one neighbor’s house and I have to move to do so.   BUT 20 minutes from my house is a pregnancy center that I volunteer 1 day a week…..1 Day.  Not that much right?  This June it will mark 3 years, Ive been going in there once a week.    For the sake of this blog post that is roughly 130 days.  (that’s accounting for vacations, holidays and sickness). That’s 520+ hours, but ya know what. I can’t leave my clients and their stories at the center.  I carry them home in my heart.  I cry.  I ache. I wonder.  Three or four girls with stories oh so different.  and yet they are free.   And then I think about all those who aren’t.   They all have names.  They all have faces.  They are mothers.  They are daughters.  They are sisters, cousins and friends.  They are all like you and me.  They are no different.   They didn’t ask for it.  They are alone and they are scared.

Want to learn more about what exactly all these red Xs are for check out the above links and their respective social media accounts.  Will You shine a light on slavery?  and stand up to end it in Your community?

Want an eye opening  account of what  human Trafficking, the sex slave industry looks like I highly recommend the movie Caged No More.  This movie should not be viewed with younger audiences and is the raw truth of what these young women and even children go through.    We need to be bold and take a stand.   END IT!

AHHHH! Happy Homemaker Monday- 2/12/2018


AHHHH!! It’s been two weeks in a row!  I’m getting into the swing of things and Hubby has made it clear that as I am beginning to feel better he does not want me to over do it and stay up too late tonight.  So I have worked EXTRA hard to power through and finish this baby up.  and when I am all through I am going to take my pricing prompts journal and curl up in bed and obey orders.  On another note be watching in the upcoming weeks for a very SPECIAL transformation that I will be working on.  I am so excited I can’t wait to share it with you all!

Now let’s get Happy!!

The weather:::.

It’s been rather mild and That’s ok and we g to to see this lovely glowing orb in the sky.  It looks vaguely familiar.  We don’t get to see it very often here in the winter,  I was just commenting to hubby how the gray skies were getting to me so that bright ball of glowing gas ws a nice treat…FROM INSIDE!!

As I look outside my window:::

I see lots of melting snow.  it rained a lot this weekend so we lost our nearly 10 uncles from last week’s storm

Right now I am:::

In comfy clothes I have attempted to get dresses twice in the last three days.  It’s been rough.  I have had to miss out on lots of fun stuff this weekend because I have some sort of strange sickness.  Some duggest the flu but I definitely don’t have all the symptoms.

Thinking and pondering:::

how long will this last…no joke.  Im not used to laying on the couch for hours at a time but just simply walking across the room WEARS ME OUT!!

On my bedside table:::

Bottle of water, my phone, cough drops Essential oils my diffuser

On my tv:::

Full House and Family Matters ( the only time I get to binge watch) And holding a book does not help aching joints

On the menu for this week:::

(I must note that I am grateful that at the beginning of this year that I had it set in my head that I was going to plan out my meals a month in advance, so all I would have to do was grocery shop- well this week that paid off because the LAST thing I have wanted to do was plan meals- or think of food for that matter though I have not been tossing my cookies, food just does not sound good)

Monday –  Burgers and fries
Tuesday –  Taco Casserole
Wednesday – Stuffed meatloaf (stuffed with cheddar cheese mashed potatoes) as long as I feel better
Thursday – Chicken Broccoli and rice casserole
Friday – Chef Salads
Saturday – Grilled cheese and tomato Soup
Sunday – Loaded Baked Potato Coup

On my to do list:::

AHHHHH! I can’t even think about that…it pretty much is get better and not over do it

What I am sewing, crocheting, knitting or creating:::

not a blessed thing

My simple pleasure:::

drinking anything Hot in the winter….hot cider, hot tea, hot coffee, hot chocolate

Lesson learned the past week:::

just do one small thing.  it will make you feel so much better, even if you feel rotten

Looking around the house:::

Let’s not talk about that!

From the camera:::


this is a shot from my Cricut design space canvas.  this will be an upcoming project that had me absolutely GIDDY late last week

Prayer List:::

Friends with very sick little ones, sick friends in general, new jobs, Hard stuff in general.

Bible verse, Devotional:::

For this week I am focusing On Esther 2 & 3

For More Happy Homemaker Mondays Check out Diary of a Stay At Home Mom!


Thrive, Job, and My Planner- Random Reflections


Welcome to this weeks dose of randomness!  It’s been a couple of weeks but a lot has happened during that time.   I have been pondering about what t has happened and I think I have kind of narrowed it down to  3  reflections of randomness!

Reflection #1. Thrive

Our church is going through the book Thrive by Mark Hall (the lead singer from Casting Crowns).  It is my second or third time through this gem of a book.   My first encounter with this book was when I reviewed it  in April of 2014 (you can find that review here– but don’t judge it was one of my first reviews!). My husband is leading it in two connect groups and I am leading it in the ladies connect group.

As I have jumped into this book again, I am simply amazed by the new insights  I am seeing.  One thing that struck deep this last week was this quote:

“I discovered this is how we pray for people.  When somebody is dangerously sick, we pray for ‘God’s will,’ not for healing, Because we’re afraid the person won’t pull through and we don’t want to stick out our necks in public.  But if it’s my kid, I’m not praying for “God’s will”.  That’s my boy and I am begging God to heal him!  Our just-in-case prayers tell us something about our view of God.”

My response: OUCH!!

It’s true.  Every.  Single.  Word.

So I want to pray differently.  I don’t want to communicate to myself or others that I only think God is capable of  healing someone I want them to know that I have full confidence that He can.  Yes He may not choose to.  I need to drop the easy Christian-ese phrasing and pray with confidence!

Reflection #2 Job

Ok it’s time for a confession- out of all the books in the Bible Job is my least favorite.  Some you who know me really well might be shocked by that because Job struggled, and I have struggled.  Not like Job necessarily, but most people are stunned when they hear my testimony.  And through that God has blessed abundantly.  But I find Job arduous.  There are points when you want sock Job’s friends for being so…….uncaring ( that seems too tame). And then there is Job who can seem whiny, and even at points puts himself on the same level as God.  And when God steps in I feel like standing up and cheering “YES FINALLY!”  but as I have embarked on reading through the Bible chronologically I have also chosen to use a different translation..though it’s not a translation but a paraphrase.  You know what, It is what I needed.  AND it’s ok.  REALLY.  And I am learning things from Job and kinda enjoying it along the way!  I have even posted quotes from Job to my social media!

Reflection #3 My Planner

I am on a hunt.  a hunt to see how I can take my every day planner and utilize it more with prayer.  I already have a Franken-Planner.   That term means I have created my own take of a Happy Planner. NO JOKE. I have my regular planner (but only  6 months worth and then in the second half I have another planner (my blog planner- the same 6 months.) I am still getting use to the set up, but I am trying to streamline what I’ve got in my bag.  So I wan to implement my prayer  thing (I don’t know what to call it)- into my actual planner.    If you have any thoughts feel free to share below in the comments.

And that’s all I have for today.  How about you? What have you been reflecting on over the past few weeks?  I’d love to hear from you!