Friday, March 26, 2010

Happy birthday, LIzette Hope!

Okay, so who is Lizette Hope? It's Makenna's cabbage patch doll!! And so to honor her birthday (according to her birth certificate below), we had a birthday party with Makenna's friends and their baby dolls!
The guest of honor

Homemade birthday hats (that cost me NOTHING, as I had all materials at the house!)

Makenna Rae & her friend Carmen with their baby dolls

After getting into pretty dress up clothes, the girls posed for pictures with their baby dolls!

(from Left to right) Jazmine (our neighbor), Carmen, Makenna & Teagen

Womb-buddies Frank*star & J-man held it down for the boys in the corner!
We used the poster from Makenna's room, some party decorations we already had, and only bought "Happy Birthday" plates & napkins and balloons from the Dollar Tree, for a grand total of $3!
After singing Happy Birthday to the birthday "girl", the girls got to dig in!!
I served Cheese Nips that I got for 10 cents a box during Harris Teeter's SuperDoubles, muffins & animal cookies leftover from a brunch with my mommy's group, canned pineapple (that is 17 cents a can during triples @ HT this week) with a key lime yogurt/whipped topping dip, and cupcakes that I made from a Martha White muffin mix (that I got 37 cents this week during triples) and strawberry frosting that I got free a long time ago! Total cost of this cool get-together was only $5!!

After the girls ate, they went & played with dolls, the kitchen & tea party set, dress up clothes, but the biggest hit was the balloons! The girls had a BLAST tossing them in the air, hitting each other in the faces, etc! The moms also had a great time talking about all sorts of fun stuff, and managed to get our snack too!

Makenna in her new dress (there is a matching one that should have arrived in FL via my dad for my sister's daughter, Chloe. Who says being seperated by a few states means that we can't still dress them to match!)
This is by far my favorite picture of this entire year. It brought tears to my eyes. This is me with the Cabbage Patch Doll I had when I was a little girl holding Makenna with Lizette. Is there anything more special than the bonding of cabbage patch dolls between generations? I think not.
This post is linking to Finer Things & Frugal Fridays.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Chilis Give-away

Toni over @ the Happy Housewife is giving away a $50 giftcard to Chili's Restaurant! This would be a GREAT date night compliments of Chilis restaurant or you could even regift it!! *My birthday is coming up in August you know!!* One lucky winner will be selected at random on Monday, March 29th, 2010. To enter yourself, go visit her post here & leave a comment! It's that easy!!

The power of the media...

In light of all the political uprising this week, I thought it'd be good to bring some humor to the table. Regardless of your political views, this is just funny:

"Cool Mommy" FAIL

Do you have those days where you realize that you're a total failure? Yeah, me too. I had this brilliant idea that I was gonna be one of those "Cool Moms" that do cool holiday-themed activities for their kids, even when they fall on school days. I decided since B had to be at school early, I would go ahead and make the pancakes up in advance and freeze them. All I'd have to do the morning of St Patty's Day would be to toss 'em in the toaster & heat up some syrup.

All went according to plan, I even had planned green things for them to wear ahead of time, and prepared breakfast (aka toss the frozen pancakes in the toaster!!) like I said.

I even made a small card & gift for his teachers

I told Kenney when he came downstairs that I would take Braydon to school that morning, and he could go ahead on to work. The kids didn't need to be dressed, because the car line provides anonymity like that! I kissed him goodbye, feeling like I was totally on top of things.

Then I looked at my calendar, which hangs above the microwave, only to notice that BOTH Makenna and Jordan had doctor's appointments with the Ear nose & throat Dr (J-man failed his newborn hearing screening) at 8:30. My eyes bulged out of my head, as I glanced down at the clock on the microwave. I spit my tea back into the cup as my eyes focused on "8:08AM". Braydon's "tardy bell" rings at 8:15. Jordan was not dressed, and Makenna, although dressed, did not have her hair done, or have shoes or socks on.

I began running around frantically, shouting at my kids to "do this" or "do that". I fussed at Makenna for not knowing what I needed her to do ahead of time. I snapped even more quickly at Braydon and told him it would be him that suffered if we were late, not me. (Even though this was CLEARLY my fault).

Thankfully, I always keep extra diapers & wipes in the car so I didn't have to worry about packing the diaper bag. I grabbed stuff to do Kenna's hair in the waiting room, and tossed (almost literally) Jordan into his car seat, knowing full well I smelled the stench of a newly nasty diaper, and that he had yet to nurse that morning. It would just have to wait.

I begun herding them towards the door, grabbed my purse, my keys & cell phone, when I heard Braydon say "Uh, mommy are you going to the dr in your jammies?" I looked down only to realize I had managed to get everyone "ready" except for myself. I threw everything down and ran upstairs, threw on clothes & grabbed my brush & makeup and ran back down stairs, only to find Makenna standing in newly wet pants. I yelled at her (and winced after what I said. Did I really just fuss at my two year old for wetting her pants b/c I didn't have time to ask her if she had to potty before we left?) I raced back up the stairs to find a new pair of panties & pants and threw them on her.

We ran out of the car, and I threw (literally) everyone into the car, turned it on & slammed the car into reverse. I don't think those speed bumps knew what hit them, and I'm just thankful my car didn't fall apart. I started grumbling and griping about how late we were, that all I wanted to do was to have a fun morning for the kids, blah blah blah. Somehow, we managed to make green lights and I made it to the car line at exactly 8:15. I told Braydon to run, but don't get caught or he'd be tardy. He jumped out of the car, without even saying goodbye and as he turned to walk in, I saw tears fall from his eyes.

My heart stopped. I gasped for breath. What had I just done? My sweet, sensitive little boy, was sent to school rushed, without a prayer from me like we normally do, without a kiss or a hug, and all he had heard while driving him was his mama complaining. My heart starting beating again, but it sank, and I was instantly plagued with guilt. Tears welled in my eyes, as I asked myself again "what did I just do?" And "Was it worth it? to be the 'cool mom' on facebook & in blogland but to hurt my baby in the process?"

As I watched him walk away, I felt like such a complete and utter failure. This was is my only job: to take care of my kids, and to protect them and I had failed. Failed miserably. I have been walking around with such shame that I haven't even posted pictures because I felt that I had done them not for the enjoyment of my children, but for my own personal sake. To get my ego stroked, to be acknowledged as a "Cool Mom".

It wasn't until yesterday during the first meeting of a women's Bible study group that I finally felt God speaking to me about the situation. The Bible study is called "Becoming More than a Good Bible Study Girl" by Lysa Terkeurst, founder & president of Proverbs 31 ministries. In the video series, she talked about the time she wanted to be "SUPER MOM" and decided to volunteer to make 100 individually wrapped homemade brownies for her daughter's school bake sale. As Lysa explained, "homemade" to her meant from the box, where you add egg & oil. She wanted these to be super special brownies so as to improve her super mom status even more, so she bought the turtle brownies that had caramel & nuts in them. She spent hours baking & wrapping them and finally got to # 98, when her daughter walked into the kitchen.

"Are those the brownies for my bake sale?" she asked.

Lysa told her they weren't just ANY brownies, they were TURTLE brownies. Thinking her daughter would be impressed, just as all the others at her school would be, her daughter's response was:

"Mom, we're a nut-free school. Didn't you read the directions from my teacher? Nothing can contain nuts!"

Lysa sank to the ground, and realized she had not read the directions. At that moment, she had failed. But she said that what we forget as women is that our circumstances do NOT dictate who we are. Our identity is not found in our circumstances. We can fail at things miserably, and yet still not be failures. This struck me so much, and I finally got it. I could let go of the guilt and realize that although I failed in that situation, I am not a failure as a mom. I may have wounded my baby, but I will always be his Mama, and I will have many times to do it the right way.

Provers 24:16 "Though the righteous man falls seven times and gets back up again..."

If the righteous man falls only 7 times and gets back up, my number is probably going to be more like 700 or 7000, but certainly I will choose to get back up again. How about you?

Friday, March 19, 2010

One Proud Mama

I have to admit I was more worried about Braydon's first year in school than he was. Maybe you remember Braydon's story. I didn't know what it was going to be like for him. I worried he'd be teased about different habits he had, or that he'd be sent to the office for his behaviour. I was seriously concerned.
But then the reports came. And the reports were... GOOD! His teachers said he was smart, he was (mostly) well behaved. I was so incredibly thankful. And then I got a note home from school asking me to attend an awards ceremony at his school, that he was receiving an award! I was totally not expecting this!

Braydon received an Outstanding Achievement in Science award, one of six given in his class!
Braydon also received a special award for one of the "CELL" lab.

I was so incredibly proud that day, and very, very thankful.

The report cards continued to come, and they were GREAT! I was just amazed! Then just a few weeks ago, I got another note home, asking me to come to another awards ceremony, that B was getting another award!
Braydon received an Outstanding Achievement in Math award! *one of four in his class*
He was so proud of his award, and so are we!!
Braydon & Sissy after the awards ceremony

Keep up the great work, Braydon! Remember that sometimes you get awards for working hard, and sometimes you don't, but either way, God sees your heart and your attitude. Make sure you do it all as unto Him!!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

CVS Pampers Deal

This coming week, starting on Sunday, March 21st through March 27th, CVS is having an awesome deal on Pampers diapers!! This time, the Pampers jumbo packs are on sale for $8.97. There are coupons for $2 or $1.50 off pampers purchase, so that makes the diapers $6.97. On top of that, you will receive $3 in extra care bucks (ECBs), which makes them $3.97 a pack!!! Easy ups & Cruisers are included in this sale & there is a limit of two per household, but if you have friends who don't have kids, they may be willing to get you two packs as well!!
This makes Pampers diapers even cheaper than store brand diapers!
For other Frugal Friday posts, head on over to Lifeasmom.

4 Months

Jordan you are now 4 months old!! Your toothless grin just melts my heart! You are still nursing 100%, although you've shown interest in solids by moving your mouth like crazy every time we eat around you! The few times we offered you cereal mixed with mommy milk you wanted nothing to do with it and screamed every time the spoon was put to your mouth! So we'll go back to our 6 month plan!!

You still fit into 0-3 month clothing!! It's fine because you're just being frugal by making sure we got our money's worth out of those adorable clothes, right?!? You love your brother & sissy, especially when they hold you or try to tickle you!!
You've started attempts to roll over, but have been unsuccessful thus far. You went to the church nursery for the 1st time during the evening service, and almost made it the whole service!!

Jordan, you are indeed a gift we treasure, and each day with you is a delight! We are so blessed to have you as a part of the Rue crew!

Read his other posts: