Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Dancing Machine

The kids were watching Disney Channel over the weekend and the Jonas Brothers Lovebug video came on between shows. I was sitting in the kitchen and happened to look over at Nathan. He was dancing up a storm.

I rewound the t.v.~ LOVE DVR ~ and grabbed my camera to videotape him. Of course, it wasn't as cute as the first time, but I think you'll get the idea.

This kid cracks me up! :)

We're off to our traditional pie-baking extravaganza at my parents' house this afternoon. Hope you are enjoying your family this week.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Case in Point...

Apparently, my wireless mouse couldn't handle my blog spurt last week and decided to poop out on me at the end of the week. My wonderful hubby went out and bought a cheapy plug-in keyboard to get me up and running again, because the part we need is currently backordered. Isn't he the bestest?!?

So, not only did I have a blog spurt last week, I also had a scrapbooking spurt. I scrapbooked almost every night and got some pretty nice pages done ~ (if I do say so myself). I finally broked into some of the new product I bought at CKC-Valley Forge back in August!!!!!

Sometimes, I have a tendency to sit on my new stuff instead of using it for fear of not creating the perfect page and thus, wasting all that fun new cute stuff. I'm trying to get over that....

I mean, what use is all that fun scrapbooking stuff if it's just sitting and no one but me gets to look at it, right??

I just LOVE my Bazzill chipboard letters that I got for $1!! A girl can never have enough brown chipboard, in my opinion...

I used my Jenni Bowlin Studio Bingo cards....FINALLY!! Aren't they just the cutest thing ever?? And I love that I'm a packrat. You see the orange zig-zag thing under the title? Saved it from cutting the surfboards out of Scenic Route paper for Ryan's birthday invites.

While looking at this page, you MUST go over to my playlist and play THE song titled here: Hey There, adds to your viewing pleasure-HA! [And you'll know what I'm talking about - he-he!]

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that almost everything on this page was found in the dollar spot at Target! Paper, diecut paper, apple diecut, and ribbon threaders all found there! Just goes to show you that you really don't need to spend a TON of $$ to scrapbook. Of course, the Jenni Bowlin Studio Bingo card and calendar along with the Heidi Swapp chipboard letters help finish it off.

Here's a tip for you...if you want to tie a perfect bow, tie it upside down. It works every time.

And for those of you who were concerned about my grungy bathroom, I cleaned it. To quote one of my family's favorite movies, we're no longer "swimming in our own filth!"
Now, I've got to muster up a pumpkin roll making spurt...

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Note to Self

Don't forget to take the plastic wrap
UNDER the aluminum foil off of the frozen lasagna
BEFORE putting in the 350 degree oven
to heat up for dinner.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Funny Stuff

Conversations that have taken place in our house over the past few days...

We were all laying in our bed on Saturday morning and Mark declared that anyone who was jumping on the bed would be kicked out. Evan jumped on the bed and was thus, ejected. He retreated to the floor. Ryan started yelling [I know, big surprise, right?]

Mark: You can get kicked off the bed for yelling, too.

Ryan continues to be loud.

Mark: Alright, Ryan, you're out of here.

Ryan jumps down off the bed to join Evan.

Evan: Welcome to the Not-Fun Place, Ryan.

Tonight at dinner, we were trying to get Ryan to finish his dinner by telling him it would give him strong muscles...

Ryan: I don't have any muscles.

Mark: Yes, you do. Right here [pointing to his big cheeks]

Ryan: I have big muscles there and [pointing to his head] I have little muscles here.


Monday, November 17, 2008

Aidan Jeffery McLaughlin

I know that many of you who read my blog might know this already, but for those who don't, I want to introduce you to my nephew, Aidan.

Aidan was born October 8, 2008, only 18 days before his due date.

He was a beautiful baby boy with a perfect little face. He had the cutest little button nose and heart shaped mouth. I'm sure that he would have been just as vivacious as my neice, Ava, his older sister.

Tragically, Aidan Jeffery will never be known on this earth, as the Lord took him to heaven before we could meet him. He died in utero due to an abnormal placenta and my sister, Jill, had to deliver him stillborn. It was one of the saddest days of my life to experience this pain with my sister and brother-in-law. To have to stand by their sides and watch them hold their baby boy who they'll never hear laugh or see run. To only begin to imagine their anguish, and to hopelessly wish to take it all away and make everything alright again. Even this is difficult for me to write, but I wanted to share Aidan's story with you.

Only a week after this happened, Jill and Brian held a beautiful memorial service for Aidan. The number of people who came was a testimony to the wonderful people my sister and brother-in law are. The church was packed ~ standing room only. God was present that night and the gospel was presented in a clear message. Brian shared his thoughts which you can read here. I had the privilege and honor to read Jill's letter to Aidan. Amazingly, I was able to get through the letter coherently. I know this was God's grace.

Almost six weeks have passed and I've watched God's grace fill up and sustain Jill and Brian through their pain and loss. They've had good days and some not-so-good days, but they know that God is leading them through this and will see them through it.

I've never been prouder of my youngest sister. She has taught me so much about faith and love and perserverance in these short weeks that at times has felt like a million years. It is in times like these that you see the strength of family bonds and true friendship. It also in times like this that you reevaluate what's really important in life.

Thank you to all you have been keeping our family in your prayers over this last month. We can literally feel the support you've given us and know that God is in all of this. Please continue to pray for comfort and peace and healing, especially as the holidays are coming. Love to all ~ Amy

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Confessions of a "Spurter"

I've decided I'm a "Spurter."

What is that? you say?

I'm pretty sure it's not a word, except in my own little world, so I get to define it however I want. :) hee-hee...
Websters Dictionary defines spurt as a verb that means to gush forth.


spurter (n): one who spurts, or works in spurts, as the mood, or inspiration, or energy strikes

This is how I work. I could go for weeks not doing something I love, like scrapbooking, and then, all of a sudden, I spurt. I look for every opportunity, every spare moment to scrapbook.

I won't clean the bathroom for weeks at a time [I know, gross!], turning a blind eye to the gunk forming around the sink drain until I get a spurt of "I need to clean the bathrooms" energy. And then I plow through it and they are sparkling again.

And unfortunately, that seems to be how I blog as well. I'll blog along great for a while ~ in a spurt ~ everything in my life seems "blogable" and interesting and funny. Then, I'll hit a wall and either not have the time, energy, or wittiness to blog on a regular basis [see the last month and a half! :)]

I spurt in my devotional life, my friendships, my parenting skills, my moods, my marriage, and countless other areas of my life. Thank God that He loves me anyway!!
I don't know if this is an inherited condition or just how I operate. I know that I drive my hubby crazy. Heck, I drive myself crazy sometimes, but after I've spurted, it feels so gratifying to know that I've completed something.
So, I have to ask, any other spurters out there?

Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. 1 Corinthians 9:24 (NAS)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Napshot of a Tinker

Ryan has trouble saying his S blends, like sn-, sc-, sp-, st-, etc., so he just drops the S at the front of the words.
So, in our house,
Evan goes to "cool" everyday and "cooters" on Wednesday nights at church...
Nathan and Evan are "tinkers"...
Ryan "pills" something on a daily basis...
Ryan doesn't like it when someone is in his "pot" on mommy & daddy's bed...
Ryan is forever yelling "top!" to his brothers...
All the boys like to "pin" in circles in the kitchen until they are too dizzy to "tand"...
Ryan LOVES doing "cool tuff" everyday with mommy....

The weird thing is that he never had any trouble saying the word "shutup" [thanks, mom ;)]
We nipped that in the bud.

Hopefully, he'll get the hang of this "peech" thing soon!

Friday, November 7, 2008

Five for Friday

FIVE ~ the magic number this week...

1. The number of children that I took with me to the pediatrician's for Nathan's 2 yr check-up on Monday. I promised them a movie when we got home if they were good and they got to watch Nemo (for the billionth time, I'm pretty sure) afterwards.

2. The number of children who tagged along to the polls with me to vote on Tuesday. They were surprisingly well-behaved for the HOUR that we had to stand in line. Only 1 hot chocolate spill....

3. The number of weeks from now when there will be less than 2 weeks left before Christmas. I sat down today and made some lists of things I want to make for gifts. Homemade gifts are better, right? We're trying to save a little money this year.

4. The number of family birthdays we have celebrated in the past month.

5. The number of jumps for joy I did when Mark told me he was coming home on Tuesday night as opposed to Wednesday afternoon . He'd been gone since early Monday morning. :)

Just a quick thank you to all who posted comments on my last post. I never talk politics here ~ maybe I should more often ~ it was the highest number of comments I've ever had on a single post. I appreciate you sharing your thoughts with me, even when we don't agree.

My only hope and prayer (maybe not the ONLY one, but an important one) is that Obama meant what he said in his victory speech. I pray that he will hear AND LISTEN to the voices of those who did not vote for him. I'm finished now... :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

WARNING: Political Rant Straight Ahead

What is wrong with our country?? I can sum it up in two words: THE MEDIA.

I am so sick and tired of the liberal media bias that is SO blatantly obvious in their support of Presidential candidate Barack Obama. If he wins today's very important election, I hope he thanks them for all their glowing support. He could not have done it without them.

I've been very fired up about this election day, for many reasons, but I think the most prevalent one is the lack of FACTS that have been reported in the mainstream media. And I think I'm even more fired up that McCain's campaign has not jumped on some of these and run with them.

FACT: Joe Biden's Delaware is the capital of practically ALL major banking companies in the USA. WHY? Because they get big TAX BREAKS!! Isn't that what Obama is claiming McCain will do?

FACT: Joe Biden's Delaware public school system is AWFUL. We live only 15 minutes from the state line and many of our friends live in DE. Most of them are either struggling to pay for their kids to attend private school or holding their breath as they send them to public school. I believe Biden stated in the debate how much he values education. REALLY?!?

FACT: Our very good friend is a K-9 Police Officer in Newark County, DE, where Joe Biden lives, so he's been on Biden duty whenever he's in town. They have to make sure his house, train station, etc. are all safe. Isn't it ironic that EVERY neighbor of Joe Biden's has a McCain sign on their lawn????

FACT: Obama/Biden do not support our troops. The Democrats cite the number of soldiers who have been killed in the line of duty since the start of the Iraq War in 2003. I believe it's somewhere in the neighborhood of 5000-6000. I agree that it's awful to be in war and am saddened that so many of our honorable men and women have died protecting our freedom as Americans. However, these soldiers were NOT drafted; they enlisted in the military and in doing so, they took on the possibility that they may have to one day go to war and possibly die for our country. I also believe that reenlisting is at an all-time high.

Now compare the number of soldiers who have died since the start of the war with the number of unborn American babies who have died from abortion in the same timeframe: over 5 million!!! What's wrong with this picture? And Obama has promised that his first act as President will be to sign the Freedom of Choice Act which will allow abortions up to the moment that a baby is born for ANY reason. Does he really value HUMAN LIFE?

FACT: Obama has exactly 143 days of experience as a US Senator. Would we allow a teacher with 143 days of experience become the superintendent of a school district? Would we allow a banker with 143 days of experience become the president of the bank? Would we allow a soldier with 143 days of experience become a top general in the military? I think you know the answer.

FACT: During his 143 days of experience, instead of voting on the key issues put before him, he chose to vote PRESENT. However when he had the opportunity to protect unborn children, he made sure he voted to oppose any of that legislation.

I could go on....

Anyway, I had to get this off my chest because

1. I'm tired of sitting by watching intelligent people, many of them friends and family, be duped by the media and the rhetoric. I hate sitting idly by while Obama smooth-talks his way into the White House and

2. I've been stressing out over the outcome of today's election.

Ultimately, I know that God is in control of this situation. I was reminded of this yesterday in our home group when this passage jumped out at me:

Colossians 1:16-17 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is BEFORE ALL THINGS and IN HIM ALL THINGS HOLD TOGETHER. (emphasis mine)

I'd love to know what you think. And please, get out and VOTE! Don't let our soldiers die in vain!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Five for Friday...on Monday :0

Yeah, yeah....this is the story of my life this past month. I haven't posted in a month for many different reasons which I will elaborate on at some point. For now, here's some photos that will explain (kind of) why I haven't been around much...

1. Aidan Jeffrey McLaughlin

2. Visit with "Old" friends

3. Michael & Kim's Wedding

4. Halloween

5. Monkeys