Monday, January 30, 2012

Just A Few Things

I don't have a lot to blog about today so I'm just going to ramble a little.

I have a cold and I feel so lousy. Ian made sure I stayed in bed all weekend and brought me tea and toast and M&Ms and apple pie... oh yum. I'm still feeling pretty wiped out but life must go on, right? My house is a disaster and I'm moving so slowly that it's taking me forever to clean it up. I actually got sidetracked by the Imagination Movers show if you can believe that. It was a new one and I actually stopped the vacuum and sat down to watch.

Sam and Julie are home sick again today. I hate that they're missing so much school but I can't send them feeling the way they are. It makes me crazy when parents send sick kids to school and then my kids catch their cooties.

Oh yeah. I said cooties.

I keep forgetting to switch the laundry so I just run the washer again and hope I remember next time. I also run the dryer for another 5-10 minutes if the clothes are cold when I eventually return to get them.

Please tell me I'm not the only one who does this.

I'm drinking iced tea like it's going out of style these days. Ian bought some Walmart brand powdered mix and we love it. I drink it with tons of ice and pretend it's summer.

Only 142 days until summer in case you're wondering.

I'm so thankful for my husband, Ian. He hasn't had an easy time for awhile now, but he always puts a smile on his face and does what needs to be done. He's out doing that today and I'm so proud of him. He is a wonderful man of character and integrity and I'm so thankful that God chose him for me.

Mattie is now awake from his nap that lasted all of eleven minutes. I think he's the next one to have this cold we're all sharing.

Hope you're having a great Monday :)


Friday, January 27, 2012

5QF ~ January 27

It's a cold, snowy day 'round these parts. Sam and Julie both feel sick today so I kept them home from school. My house is a disaster and I'm so far behind on my laundry.

I was planning on vlogging today, but I have a cold and my face is puffy. And my hair is a hot mess.

Trust me. You don't want to see me today.

So, today I'm just going to do my Five Question Friday old skool style and type it out.


Let's go.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

1. Do you swim in the winter?

No. I don't like the chill I get when I go outside after swimming. I don't take the time to dry my hair before I leave and it freezes on the way to the car.

When I win the lottery and have an indoor pool in my house, you betcha I'll be swimming every day. Be nice to me and I'll invite you to join me.


2. Do you love or hate winter?

I think I'm pretty clear on this. I despise winter on a level you cannot imagine.

Only 52 days until Spring...

3. Do you put makeup/actual clothes on when you know you're going to be home all day with just family?

I don't wear makeup at all. I have been considering starting because I'm getting older and wrinkles are appearing, and my skin isn't as nice as it was when I was younger. I need some 911 assistance.

As for actual clothes, yes. I get dressed every morning. I am not one to lounge around in my pjs. It makes me feel gross. Even if I'm sick, like today, I will still get dressed.

4. How old were you when you had your first alcoholic beverage?

I was sixteen. I went to a bush party with several coworkers that were older than me and I started drinking beer. I had absolutely no tolerance and no one told me when to stop. I eventually passed out for about 45 minutes. I was still drunk when my friends dropped me off at home the next morning. I remember sitting on my front porch for almost an hour trying to find my keys in my purse. I told my mother I was sick and she took care of me all day. The guilt became overwhelming and I admitted that I was hung over.

She grounded me for two years.

Two years.

I wish I was lying.

I was allowed to go to the movies, the mall or out to dinner with friends, but I wasn't allowed to go to any parties for two years.

She's a tough cookie, my Mama.

5. How many ill calls in a 12 month period do you think are acceptable?

Oh I could go on about this all day long. It really bothers me when someone takes a lot of time off work. I don't like having to cover someone else's workload on top of mine, and I can't stand having to wait to get something from someone else who's off all the time.

I've worked with people who felt it was a challenge to work two weeks in a row without missing any days.

We get 40 hours of paid leave per year, which is 5 days. I think exceeding that amount of time would be considered excessive.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

That's it! Hope you all have a wonderful Friday!

Head on over to Mama M's blog My Little Life to join in on the fun!


Thursday, January 26, 2012

It's Been A Good Day

My day started out a little on the rough side. I've caught Ian's cold and my head feels too heavy for my body. And I'm a bit cranky.

This morning we took Sam and Jules to school, then Ian dropped Jordan, Matthew and me off at my Mama's to visit for a bit while he went to an appointment. We had so much to talk about that I don't think we covered everything! I haven't been to visit in over a week and it felt so good to be with her again.

We got some good news today too. I'm not sure when I can talk about it but I will as soon as I can. I hate when bloggers do that. If you're going to tell me you have good news, either tell me now or keep it to your dang self. Right? Right.

Ian and I took the littles to the mall in the afternoon which gave me an opportunity to pop in here.

*my apologies to the dude sitting on the bench...I don't know how to photoshop or blur you out. But rest assured you look fab-u-lous SNAP.*

I spent 25 glorious minutes in there. I looked at everything I wanted to look at and priced out a few things I'd like to add to my sewing arsenal someday.

I passed by a bin of pre-cut fabric and saw this:


We are a Veggie Tales family and I thought I could make a pillow each for Jordan and Matthew. We'll see. I couldn't pass it up at only $3! I tend to buy fabric when it's on sale and then just add it to my collection without making anything because I really don't know what I'm doing. I really should take a sewing class or two.

So there you have it. We got some great news today, I visited my Mama and Fabricland. All the makings of a great day.

Tomorrow is Five Question Friday and I think I feel a vlog coming on...


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What I Look Like When I Try To Sew

I think I've made my love of Pinterest pretty clear. If you aren't on it then there is something wrong with you.

Ok, not really. But seriously, you need to check it out.

Every so often I come across something that makes me laugh really, really hard.

Look at this.

This was me after drinking three glasses of wine while trying to applique a pillowcase for Julie's friend for Christmas.

Too funny.

Ok.. go sign up!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tuesday's Treats ~ Skor Squares

It feels like forever since I posted about something I baked. October of 2010 in fact! Between working and being exhausted from being pregnant, I had to put my baking hobby on the back burner for awhile.

But I'm baaaccckkkk.... Or rather, easing back into things slowly.

One of my easiest go-to recipes are for Skor Squares. Quick prep time, quick baking time, and everyone loves them. I've made them for baby showers, bible studies, pick-me-ups for people, as an olive branch to my neighbours...

And now you can make them too!

You'll Need:

1 box of Ritz crackers (225 g box)
1 package of Skor Bits
1 can of condensed milk

Preheat your oven to 350.

Crush the entire box of the Ritz crackers and pour into a large bowl. Add the whole package of Skor chips and the can of condensed milk.

Mix until thoroughly blended.

Pour into a greased 9 x 13 inch pan and bake for 20 minutes.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Yes, it really is that easy and there's absolutely no way you can make a mistake. And they are so delicious.


Monday, January 23, 2012

Cleaning A Glass Stove Top

Remember how I used to complain about my oven beeping all the time whenever I turned it on?

I used to want to punch it.

It once took me 2 1/2 hours to cook five pork chops, and then they ended up almost getting burned because the temperature shot up from 350 to 425 without anyone touching it.

We had to stop using it several months ago when it started heating up all on its own. The burners worked fine, but we used the toaster oven, microwave, and crock pot for everything else.

So, all that to say, we recently got a new oven. And I love it. I'm not one to get attached to appliances, but I'll admit.. I've hugged this one a few times.

I've long wanted one with a glass stove top. Ian always said no, not as long as we had small children because he was afraid one of them would touch it and burn their little hands. I always said that children could be taught not to touch.

But I got one :-)

Have I mentioned I love it? I did? Oh, well I'm probably going to be saying it again at some point in this post. Be prepared.

But as much as I love it, it makes me so nervous. I'm afraid of the stove top getting scratched or cracked. I won't let anyone else clean it but me. I'm kind of a beast when it comes to it. My mother-in-law gave me some tips on how to clean it and gave me some Vim and scrub brushes to use. While it does most of the trick, there is still some residual stuff left behind at times.

Yesterday I made spaghetti for dinner and had a boil over. Normally I lay a wooden spoon over the top of the pot to prevent this from happening, but Jordan had taken it from the drawer and I couldn't find it.

So, even after cleaning my stove top with Vim, the scrub brush and a whole lot of elbow grease, this is what I was left with.

I was getting stressed out and started to get really nervous. Why wasn't it coming off? Was it going to look like this forever?

Then I remembered back to when my sweet friend Jen sent me over to my beloved Pinterest to check out a this link she'd found that explained how to clean your stove top.

I figured that today was a great day to give it a go. I took pictures so you can feel like you were right there with me.


First I liberally sprinkled baking soda all over the top of my stove.

Then I soaked two dish towels in a bowl full of hot, soapy water. I squeezed out the excess water and placed the towels over the top of the stove. Apparently this was only to take fifteen minutes, so I set my timer and went to do something else.

When the timer went off I practically ran to rip off the towels and rejoice in my brand new looking stove top.

It didn't work.

Not ready to give up just yet, I repeated all the steps again.

When the timer went off again, I returned to the stove and gently moved the towel around, using the baking soda as a scrub. When I peeled off the towels, it looked better but not perfect.

Out came the Vim and scrub brush again. I was expecting to have to use a lot more elbow grease, but the rest of it came up pretty quickly. A quick wipe with a clean, dry cloth and this is what I was left with.

Doesn't it look great?! I love it!!

I have walked by and admired it about a dozen times now. It looks like new.

Ian googled ways to clean a glass stove top and one suggestion said to wait until the "hot surface" light goes off, then wipe up any spills with a damp cloth before they have a chance to set. I think I'll be trying that next time to avoid this stress! A couple of people suggested a product called Bar Keepers Friend but I'm not sure we'll sell it here in Canada. Worth a try to look!

Do you have any special tips or tricks you use?


Sunday, January 22, 2012

Counting Mine {136 - 150}

Today was my first day back in church after being away for two months. Well, if you don't count Christmas Eve, but that was at a different church.

Why the long break? Lots of reasons, none of them really worthy of such a long time away. I think that at some level was a little freaked out at what happened the last time I was there. I didn't really go into detail about it, but I mentioned it in November.

It was so good to be back today, and to see so many of the faces I love so much. I collected lots and lots of hugs :) Matthew went into the nursery for the first time and did really well. It felt weird to be empty handed in the sanctuary!

Back at home, I was preparing lunch and I asked Jordan how her Sunday school class went, and she told me how much God loves her.


It's a good, good, day.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

136} that sweet, tired feeling after a day out in the sun
137} the first warm day after a long, cold winter
138} swimming in the dark
139} magazine day
140} baby skin
141} irish accents
142} watching tv in bed
143} seeing my big boy cuddling my little boy
144} holding a sleeping baby
145} baking something new that Ian loves
146} how my mother's front door is always open
147} spring
148} people watching in the mall
149} ironing Ian's shirts
150} Ian's hand on my lower back as we enter a room

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

If you are counting your own blessings and blogging about them, will you leave me a comment with the link to your blog, or share them with me at I'd love to know how you are being blessed through your journey!

Counting Mine {1-15}
Counting Mine {16-30}
Counting Mine {31-45}
Counting Mine {46-60}
Counting Mine {61-75}
Counting Mine {76-90
Counting Mine {91-105}
Counting Mine {106-120}
Counting Mine {121-135}


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Saturday Afternoon Sewing Project: Toddler Apron

I've been wanting to sew something for awhile now but the idea of pulling out my sewing machine and ironing board and setting everything up seemed like too much trouble.

I tend to lose track of time when I sew, which is not a good idea when I have little ones to watch.

But today seemed like a perfect, slow day to pull out my stuff and choose a project. Ian said he'd take over all Matthew's care so I could relax and enjoy myself.

I love that man.

My initial plan was to make a diaper wipe case thing that has a pocket for a few diapers and a pocket for the wipes. But once I got into my tote full of fabrics, I decided to make Jordan an apron instead.

I love aprons. Julie and I have each have a gorgeous apron from The Hip Hostess and we feel like we're all that when we wear them. I thought Jordan would enjoy having one for herself so she can be like us in the kitchen.

This is the fabric I chose:

Sew pretty. (Haha...see what I did there?)

Oh, I guess I should warn you... if you sew extremely well, you might just keel over and die at how I do things. Just love me anyway.

I had an old apron that Sam and Julie used to wear way back in the day that is all stained and grody now. I pressed it and used it as my pattern.

Don't groan. It worked.

I pinned the apron to my fabric and cut around it, leaving enough to hem.

Then I cut four pieces to make into the ties. Two for her waist, two for her neck.

I think the waist ties were 20 inches and the neck ties were 12 inches. But I could be mistaken. I'm very hungry right now and my focus on my belly.

I folded each strap in half, pressed it, then opened it.

Each side was folded into the centre point and pressed again.

And press...

And then folded, pinned together and sewn closed.

I set those aside and then hemmed all around the apron part.

Sew, sew, sew...


Jordan is a happy gal.

There are some small imperfections but I'm pleased with it. I know what to do better or differently next time.

Usually when I sew something, all I see are the mistakes. I've made the decision to try new things and to be ok if they don't turn out perfectly. I admire other people's baking/cooking/sewing skills and have spent so much time trying to be like those people, and I just end up feeling like a failure.

So done with that!

I've made the decision to try new things, and to be ok if they don't turn out. I need to stop being jealous of the skills of others, and enjoy the gifts and skills that God gave me.

And that's how things are going to roll around here from now on.

Happy Saturday!

Friday, January 20, 2012

5QF ~ January 20

Yesterday was an AWESOME was my birthday!

What did I do, you ask?

I was served breakfast and lunch in bed, where I stayed ALL.DAY.LONG. I read, watched tv and napped.

I loved every second of it.


We even let the big kids skip school so they could be at home with us. :-)

Ian made one of my favourite meals and once Julie came home from Girls Club at the church, we had the birthday cake that Sam baked for me. (He's kind of an awesome baker)

It was a really good day.

And now it's Friday :) And what happens around here on Fridays...? I play along with Mama M's Five Question Friday. So glad she is back home from her vacation!

Ok, let's get to it.

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

1. Where do you hide the reeeally good snacks?

It depends. If the snacks are M&M related, then I hide them in my nightstand. Otherwise I hide them in one of the crispers in the fridge. Or, as we call them, rotters. Crispy things go in, I forget them, and they come out all rotted.

Oh my gosh. I can't believe I told you that.

Moving on.

2. Do u keep your vehicle clean or am I the only one who has things falling out of their van?

Every so often Ian will go through our van and clean it all out. Then bit by bit, the crap returns and it gets all messed up once again.

Yesterday I opened the side door and an empty pop can fell out.

Can't believe I just told you that either.

3. Have you ever been to Vegas?

No, but Ian has and he would love to take me. I'm not much of a gambler. I'll take $20 to the casino, lose it, win it back and then stick it in my purse and I'm ready to go.

I've heard the shows are awesome though. Someday we'll go.

4. Warm room light blankets or cold room warm snuggly blanket?

I don't really like blankets at all. I get overheated and then I start fussing and it's just not good. Then I need to turn on the fan so I can cool off and settle down.

So if I had to choose, a light blanket.

5. What is the worst airplane/flying experience you've ever had?

The last time I was on an airplane was about fifteen years ago when we flew out to British Columbia for a friend's wedding. But I wasn't asked about WHEN, now was I?

Focus Kate.

I can't help it. Ian put in a new air freshener in the automatic air freshener sprayer thingy and it smells AWFUL. Technically it is called "Mountain Mist" or something lame like that. It should be called RAID for the horrific smell it has. It's blowing my focus and making my head hurt.

Worst flight ever was the return flight from our honeymoon. There was a group of people at our resort that started drinking the second they arrived at the resort and didn't stop until the bus came to return us to the airport 7 days later. One lady was so drunk she threw up all over herself, her seatmate and the person in front of her on the bus. I looked at Ian and said, "Perfect. What do you want to bet she sits next to me on the plane?"

Ian just rolled my eyes at me and said something about me always assuming the worst.

We found our seats on the plane and then watched as Drunk Lady made her way down the aisle. She found her seat and climbed over a couple to sit down.

"See?" Ian smiled. "You shouldn't assume the worst."

And then... someone pointed out to her that she was in the wrong seat. She got up, walked further down the aisle and located her correct seat.

Right next to me.

"HIIIIIII!" she said, breathing her vomit breath in my face.

I just looked at Ian. "You were saying...?


~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~ ~*~

Alright, that's all I've got. Hope you all have a wonderful Friday!

Head on over to Mama M's blog My Little Life to join in on the fun!


Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Another Commercial I Love

I'm not a huge fan of commercials. We have PVR so I tape all my shows and watch them

And when a network runs the same ones over and over and over it makes me absolutely crazy.

But this one...

... I can't watch enough.

It makes me laugh because I've been that guy.

More than once.

For the most part I don't want to be touched, talked to or waited on when I'm sick. But if there is barfing involved... I become this dude.

"Ian... Ian... call my mom..."

It doesn't matter how many times I've watched this commercial (and it's a lot), I laugh every single time.

Do YOU have a commercial that you just love?

Other Commercials That I Love:
Tim Hortons


Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Before and After

Ever feel like you clean up a room only to have it completely destroyed within the hour?

Me too.

I'm not a huge enforcer on chores. If I ask the children to help out, they do. I guess I feel like since I'm at home all the time that all the housework should be my responsibility. I know that in the long run I'm not doing them any favours, but I just can't seem to help it.

If I need the table set or cleared, the front hall straightened, or Jordan's always messy desk cleaned up, I call out what I need help with and they choose which chore they want to do.

The one that no one ever wants to help with?

The play area off my kitchen.

I don't blame them. Just look at that mess.

It's mostly Jordan that plays here. I try to get her to tidy up but it gets pretty overwhelming for her. I try to break it down by task, and suggest she first gather all her crayons, then stack all her colouring books... but then my OCD & control issues take over and I shoo her out of the room so I can clean it myself before I'm eighty.

Now. Doesn't that look better?

I think so too.

I like this picture. It makes me feel productive. And peaceful.

It stayed this way for almost three hours. Or as I like to call it... naptime.

I am debating whether or not to print this picture out and hang it up for everyone to see, with a big sign saying IF THIS ROOM DOESN'T LOOK LIKE THIS PICTURE WHEN YOU LEAVE, THEN CLEAN IT UP!

Or something.

Am I weird for taking a before and after pic? Tell me I'm not the only one who does this!


Monday, January 16, 2012


Every so often I have a smack my head moment when I realize I don't take very many pictures of Matthew. I guess that's a side affect of being the fourth kid on the scene.

But there are perks to being number four as well. He never has to do anything for himself. There is always someone close by to pick up something he dropped or to give him a hug, or a sip of his bottle.

Recently I commented to Sam in my usual calm, relaxed way, "HE SHOULD BE SITTING BY NOW! WHY ISN'T HE SITTING!? WE NEED TO TEACH HIM!"

Sam, who really is calm and relaxed, gently sat him down on the floor. He watched him for a second and then looked up at me. "You mean like this?"


Who knew he'd be a pro sitter right out of the gate??

All he wants to do now is sit and play with his toys.

Such great posture.

I love his little arms and legs!

He tries hard to crawl but hasn't mastered it yet. I can't leave him playing because he sometimes gets rolling around to check out other parts of the living room. All he has to do is start to whimper and someone jumps in to help him get what he wants.

We can't help ourselves!

He saw the doctor last week for his last round of vaccinations and he weighs 19 lbs! He's such a perfect little squishy armful.

He laughs and smiles quickly, and babbles and coos all the time. I love how his whole face lights up when he sees me.

He's still a lousy sleeper. Good thing he's so cute.

His hair has three different things going on all at once. The top is all spiky, the front does something else all together and the back is smooth.


Oh I love him.

OK. I need to go and take some more pictures of him to quell some of this Mama Guilt.


Sunday, January 15, 2012

A Post Where I Seem To Complain A Lot

Thank you to everyone who participated in Five Question Friday this week, usually hosted by Mama M at My Little Life. I loved helping out and being able to check out some great new blogs in the process.

One thing I must apologize for. I have a right-click disable feature on my blog to protect any pictures and content that I post here. Which means, anyone who wanted to cut and paste this week's questions onto their blog wasn't able to, and had to write them out instead. I completely forgot about that until someone brought it to my attention.

I'm sorry :(

Other than that, I think it all went well!

Ian and Sam will be returning home from the Jr High retreat later this afternoon. Ian always stays in touch with me when he's away, and he sent me a few pictures and reports of the fun they were having. Apparently Sam took a cross country skiing lesson yesterday. I can't wait to hear about that.

The girls, Matt and I have managed well in their absence. Friday night I cooked the girls' favourite pasta for dinner. I saw the "recipe" in a magazine and wanted to try it. It's a jar of Ragu spaghetti sauce with Philadelphia cream cheese melted and mixed into it, served over penne. SO GOOD. Julie made her amazing s'mores for us for dessert and we put on our pjs and watched Frenemies on the family channel.

Saturday morning I woke up to Jordan's coughing. She had climbed into bed with me at some point during the night and I let her stay. I knew from the first cough that it was croup, and she had that really heavy, raspy breathing. Stridor I think it's called. She was so panicked and was grabbing my hands and my shirt, coughing and crying and gasping for air. I took her into the bathroom and ran the shower on hot for as long as we could stand it. Afterwards, I tucked her in my bed until Julie woke up. I asked her to watch Matthew and then brought Jordan in the bathroom again to run another shower. We stayed longer this time and it seemed to help immensely.

Jordan had croup when she was just a year old, and the gasping for air part scared me like crazy, and I called 911. She spent the night in the ER on breathing treatments and sent home. I felt pretty helpless yesterday, wondering how "normal" this was and when did the air gasping part become an emergency. I called my mom - who was a nurse before retiring - and filled her in, and she said I could call her anytime during the night if something happened and would come right over. I'm so thankful that she had a very easy night.

Last night we had Mac & Cheese, made stuffed bunnies and ate more s'mores before bed. Matthew was up constantly during the night and I missed having Ian with me to help. I put Matt to bed and get up with him anytime up to 3:30am. After that Ian gets up. He wouldn't go to sleep until after 10pm and then was waking at 1, 2:30, 3:30, 4:45, 5:30, 6:15....

This morning the children had chocolate cake for breakfast because I didn't feel well enough to make them anything healthier. My head is killing me, I'm extremely nauseated and I'm exhausted.

Between Jordan's croup, Matthew's repeated waking and the constant fighting between the girls for the last two days... I am beyond ready for Ian to be home. It has not been an easy weekend.

The children have a PA day tomorrow. That kills me. They just had two weeks off, return for one week, then get a day off. I don't understand it. I'm sure Sam will appreciate the day to recuperate from the retreat.

It's now naptime and I have two little people to get to bed, and a mountain of laundry to fold. Hope you're having a wonderful Sunday! :-)


Friday, January 13, 2012

5QF ~ January 13

It's Friday! It's Friday!

It's just going to be Julie, the Littles and me this weekend. Sam and Ian will be heading up north for the Jr High winter youth retreat and won't be home until Sunday afternoon. We'll watch movies and do our nails, and maybe even work on a craft Julie found that interested her. Hopefully there won't be any scary noises or anything to creep me out. The last time they were away at a retreat some freaky dude was knocking at my door after 11pm! I almost called the police but they went away. Whew.

As I mentioned yesterday, Mama M is entrusting me with her Five Question Friday blog hop today while she's on vacation. She's probably laying on the beach with a fruity drink by her side. Hopefully she remembered her sunscreen!

Rules for 5QF: Copy and paste the following questions to your blog post, answer them, then watch for the linky post to appear Friday morning and LINK UP!

Questions for Friday, January 13th: (GAH! Friday the 13th!!) (Special thanks to Keely (@Keely1978) at Mannland5, Tyler (Tylerh2102) at Just Another Day In OUR Paradise, Pam (@TroopPetrie) at Troop Petrie, Melissa (@Melissa_m80) at My Scrumptious Treats and Lauren (@funyungrl) at My Life for their question suggestions!

Mama M would love to link you in a future 5QF, so head on over to her community or watch for her Thursday afternoon shout outs for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos her and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

1. What's the the last thing you bought for yourself?
2. What is your favourite meal on a cold winter day?
3. Have you started looking at swimsuits for this year, and do you buy a new one every year?
4. If you could be any candy what would you be and why?
5. What are you most passionate about?

Since Mama M is away this week and we will all miss her... here's a BONUS question supplied by Keely!

** What is your favorite thing to "pin" on Pinterest?
(good one, Keely!)

~*~ ~*~ ~*~ *~ ~*~

1. What's the the last thing you bought for yourself?

Yesterday I bought myself a cup of tea at Second Cup when I met up with a sweet friend for a visit.

Before that it was highlighters. Actually, Ian bought the highlighters for me, but I asked him to get them. So technically I bought them for myself. I'm a highlighting freak.

2. What is your favourite meal on a cold winter day?

I love mashed potatoes and corn with gravy. Oh sweet mercy, that food makes my belly happy.

3. Have you started looking at swimsuits for this year, and do you buy a new one every year?

Ew. No. I HATE shopping for swimsuits. I still have the one I bought for my honeymoon almost 16 years ago. I hardly ever wear it (and to the public at large... you are welcome) so it's not worn through like you'd think it would be.

One year Ian decided he was tired of looking at straight black and sent me out to buy myself a new one. With colour.

It was awful.

Imagine me on the floor of the dressing room, curled up in the fetal position. I may have been shaking in fear. I ended up buying another black one, but this one had a white and hot pink stripe.

I've worn that one about three times.

4. If you could be any candy what would you be and why?

An M&M. Everyone loves M&Ms, right? Well, except my husband, which works out well because of my sharing issues.

5. What are you most passionate about?

Loving my family.

I want my husband to feel respected, honoured, loved and cherished. Some days I accomplish this better than others, but I will never stop trying until I get it perfect.

I want my children to feel loved, wanted and special. To be a godly example for them, encouraging them to love God, others and themselves. To know that they can do anything with their futures and to never settle just for what's easy. To stand up and speak out for what's right. That life will bring storms, but their solid faith in Jesus will be what gets them through.

I want to honour my mother with my words and actions, and to ensure that she knows she has my love and respect.

We only get one shot here and when I leave this earth I want the people I loved most in my life to know I loved them with everything I had in me.

I'm also passionate about living an authentic life.

**Bonus Question: What is your favorite thing to "pin" on Pinterest?

Oh I am a pinaholic! I LOVE Pinterest.

I like pinning food or desserts that look like something I would love to try, encouraging Bible verses or funny pictures, and craft/sewing things. I love being inspired by the things I see there.

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Ok, that's a wrap! Make sure you link up and if you get the chance, hop around and check out some of the other blogs that have linked up and leave them some love. It's a great way to meet your fellow bloggers and make some new friends.

Happy Friday everyone!


Thursday, January 12, 2012

Five Question Friday Preview

Questions for Friday, January 13th: (GAH! Friday the 13th!!) (Special thanks to Keely (@Keely1978) at Mannland5, Tyler (Tylerh2102) at Just Another Day In OUR Paradise, Pam (@TroopPetrie) at Troop Petrie, Melissa (@Melissa_m80) at My Scrumptious Treats and Lauren (@funyungrl) at My Life for their question suggestions!

Mama M would love to link you in a future 5QF, so head on over to her community or watch for her Thursday afternoon shout outs for questions on Twitter and offer up your best question suggestions! Remember to @5crookedhalos her and use hashtag #5QF if you go the Twitter route!)

1. What's the the last thing you bought for yourself?
2. What is your favourite meal on a cold winter day?
3. Have you started looking at swimsuits for this year, and do you buy a new one every year?
4. If you could be any candy what would you be and why?
5. What are you most passionate about?

Since Mama M is away this week and we will all miss her... here's a BONUS question supplied by Keely!

** What is your favorite thing to "pin" on Pinterest?
(good one, Keely!)

Remember, this is just a preview and the real deal is tomorrow. In the meantime, head on over to the blogs of the people who provided this week's questions. They're a great group of ladies!

See you tomorrow!


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Jury Selection ~ Day Two

I realized today that I'd forgotten to post about my second day of jury selection.

It was riveting.

I woke up feeling very chatty and raring to go. I ate my breakfast on my way to the courthouse, scored a sweet parking spot that wasn't too far away, and snagged a coveted chair by the window. The only people there that day were the panel I was in, so it wasn't crowded at all.

Every time I looked at this guy he was sleeping.

We were instructed to be there for 9am, however nothing happened until 10:30 when they took attendance. Then we all sat in silence until 11am at which point we were all herded into a courtroom so things could get underway.

As soon as the charges were read I felt my chest tighten. There was no way I could serve on this jury. No way. I don't know if I'm allowed to tell you the nature of the trial because there were all sorts of laws and rules and instructions given by the judge and "no blogging about the trial" was part of it.

So, rather than run the risk of getting thrown into the slammer for my big mouth, I'll just say it was awful and I'll skip the details.

The judge asked for anyone who couldn't hear what was being said to come to the front. Only two people went up.

Next, he called for anyone who couldn't speak or understand English to come forward. About five people went up for that.

Then he called for anyone with a medical issue that would hinder their participation on the jury to come forward. About ten people went up for that.

And then he called for anyone who felt that serving on the jury would cause them significant financial hardship. About 27 people lined up.

I groaned.

Students were deferred. A woman who was 9 months pregnant was deferred. A limo driver was denied and told to sit back down, and he stood there shouting at the judge. A man who was the sole provider for his wife, who was mentally unwell, and their children. The judge denied him at first, until the man gently spoke up asking him to please reconsider, that he had so much to deal with, could he please spare him this one extra responsibility. I prayed for the judge to show this man compassion. He was deferred.

I kept watching the clock.

Then they separated all of us into four groups. I was in the third group and we were herded single file into the main waiting room. We all had to sit together and were not permitted to speak with group four.

Finally at 12:30 we were released for lunch and I headed down to the cafeteria.

While I ate, I prayed that I wouldn't get selected to serve, and that I would get an opportunity to explain to someone why I couldn't. I truly felt that I couldn't be impartial and that someone needed to know.

While I sat there I overheard one woman ask another "Is there a gift shop here?"

Bless her heart.

I went back up to the waiting room for 2pm as instructed.

At 3pm my group was herded single file to another room. We had a court officer leading us and one bringing up the rear. There was to be no talking and no escaping. We were told nothing other than that they were close to having a full jury and we would be finished by 5pm.


At 3:30 they started taking five people at a time to the courtroom. It was 3:40 when they brought me in. I was #17. The court officer guarding the door to the courtroom said they only needed one more juror and it would be over with.

Person #13 went in.

I prayed that they wouldn't get to me.

All of a sudden we were rushed back down the hall like something was on fire. "Move! Move! The jury is coming out. Move!"

Back in our room, the five of us waited, wondering what was going on.

At 4pm a court officer said the jury was complete and we were free to go.

Relief flooded me and I grabbed up my purse and took off.

Apparently my name will go back into the jury pool and I could be re-called in three years. While the waiting was boring and went on for hours, it was interesting to see how the process went and it's always good to learn new things.

Still, I'm glad it's over with.


Courageous Coupon

The kind folks at Graf Martin are offering this $5 off coupon to you all to purchase your own copy of the Courageous DVD or Blu-ray at any participating Canadian Christian retailer.

Awesome, right?

There is one snag, though. Some time ago, I disabled the right click option on this blog in order to protect the pictures of my children that I post here. Unfortunately, that means it may be hard for you to just copy and print out this coupon.

If you are interested in having this coupon, please email me at and I will send you a printable copy right away.

I can't WAIT to see this movie again. So, so, SO fabulous.

If you do watch it, please let me know - I'd love to discuss it with you!


Monday, January 09, 2012

7 Months

Happy 7th Month Birthday Matthew!
You are SO loved!


Sunday, January 08, 2012

5QF - January 8

I have a few blog posts floating around in my head these days and very little time to write them out. Nothing terribly important, just little things I want to talk about.

Tomorrow Sam and Julie return to school. I have loved having them at home for the last two weeks and will miss them a lot when they head off tomorrow morning.

You know the house across the street that put out all the garbage and then left in a hurry, and then I saw all sorts of cleaning, painting and work crews coming and going, followed by a for sale sign in the lawn and then shortly after it was sold?


Spy much, Kate?

Well, all that to say, I saw the new people yesterday. They had a whole whack of brand new furniture delivered and I saw two young children about three and five years old running in and out. Jordan and I are going to take a walk later and see if we can meet them. The one that looks to be three is a little girl and it would be awesome for Jordan to make a friend. I can just picture them waving at each other from their windows. So cute.

They've got HUGE boxes in their garage right now. I really, really, want a couple of them so I can make a washer and dryer for Jordan to play with. I get I'd best be gettin' to makin' friends stat.

Friday was a busy day for us here so I didn't get to do my Five Question Friday on time, so I'm just going to do it today.

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1. What is the weather like where you are and do you like it?

It's cold and I hate it. Not really any snow at all which is fine by me. Today is very sunny and that helps a lot. When it's overcast and snowy I get depressed.

2. When you're sick what do you seek comfort from?

Nothing. I just want to sleep, sleep, sleep and be left alone. I don't need to be visited or waited on, I just want to sleep it off. I do like it when Ian checks on me and covers me up with the blanket. But that's all I need really.

3. What do you need to do before the end of the month?

Nothing terribly pressing. Just the regular day to day stuff that needs to get done.

4. Have you ever served on a jury?

I made it to day two of the jury selection process on Thursday but I didn't get chosen. I am so glad because the nature of the trial was very disturbing. I'll post my day two post as soon as I can.

5. If you could be any animal, what would you be and why?

A cat. No matter what happens to a cat, it always lands on it's feet. I feel as though I'm easily knocked off my feet these days, so a little cat in me would work out just fine.

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That's all I have time for today. Have a great Sunday!

Head on over to Mama M's blog My Little Life to join in on the fun!


Saturday, January 07, 2012

Book Review: The Resolution For Women

With everything you have to do, have you taken the time to decide who you want to be?

From best-selling author Priscilla Shirer, in partnership with the creators of The Love Dare, comes a resolution that challenges you to realign your daily decisions in a way that glorifies God and fulfills who He created you to be. Layered with biblical truth and seasoned with encouragement, The Resolution for Women will inspire the woman you see in the mirror to trust God's perfect plan for her lie, resolving to become "purposefully feminine, surprisingly satisfied and faithfully His."

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I am so excited to tell you all about this book that I don't even know where to start. I want to do it justice so that you will be inspired to read it for yourself.

The Resolution For Women is made up of fourteen resolutions to better your life, broken down into three parts: This Is Who I Am, This Is What I Have, This Is What Matters To Me. The author begins each chapter with a story and weaves it in with that chapter's resolution, making it personal so it will relate to the reader. Each section ends with questions to ponder or actions to be taken, as well as a spot to sign your name, solidifying your commitment to that particular resolution.

Funny, challenging and oftentimes in-your-face convicting, this book will inspire you to want to be a better wife, mother and friend. The author is respectful, yet she is not afraid to speak out on the stuff that is hard to talk about. She acknowledges topics that stretch our understanding and may cause us to feel uncomfortable. She has a way of presenting a new idea or thought pattern to help us re-frame our way of thinking.

There is so much I loved about this book and it is full of highlighted paragraphs and folded down pages. So much truth and knowledge packed into each page. I loved the list of affirming Bible verses in Part Two, re-written in the first person so that when they are spoken out loud they are affirming. It's a great go-to place to be reminded of who I am and what I am expected to do to strength my faith.

This book has inspired me to be a more loving mother who is intentional in her parenting, as well as to be more encouraging and supportive of my husband.

In the chapter entitled "How Do You Heal An Unbroken Heart?" the reader is challenged to rethink the prayers that ask for our be hearts protected from things we see or experience. But if our hearts are healthy and whole, they don't need healing. The author challenges us to pray for our hearts to be broken so that we can be healed by the ultimate Healer. It's a crazy thought to get our heads around, isn't it? It's our nature to protect ourselves and here we are presented with the idea of asking for our hearts to be broken. But it makes so much sense. I want His healing touch, don't you?

The author tells us how to live with integrity and how to forgive those who have hurt us. These resolutions have inspired me to be a better wife, one that honours, loves, encourages, prays for and submits to her husband as the spiritual leader of our home. To be a mother who is intentional in her parenting, loving deeply and offering affection and affirmation, showing them what it looks like to be a woman secure in her femininity who chases Jesus with her whole heart and models Him to others. A better friend, who shares her time and gifts with others, encouraging and esteeming them as I am best able.

One of the topics I found difficult was that of submitting to my husband. This is always a tough topic and I have balked at it countless times in my marriage. The author explains submission in it's biblical sense and stresses that by submitting to our husbands we are not lessening ourselves, not at all! She goes on to say that the feminist movement has taught us not to submit to a man, to be in control of ourselves, to view ourselves as equal - as if not better - than our spouses. Oftentimes this produces a hard and controlling woman, taking the role of spiritual leader from our husbands as God designed.

Tough stuff to get your head around, isn't it? I know! But to be honest with you, I do submit to my husband as the spiritual head of our home. I do not feel lessened by it or controlled by it. It feels right and he handles this role well, and I admire the way he leads our family using his God given gifts and talents. He respects me and I am a factor in every equation. Instead of it being a master/servant type of scenario some people view submitting as, I actually feel more empowered knowing our roles in our home.

The section on integrity challenged me as well. It calls us to look at what types of entertainment we seek out that may encourage us to sin. The type of sinful behaviours we watch, listen to or read, that we would never participate in or tolerate in our real lives, simply for the entertainment. What other type of sin do we entertain under the guise of "fun"? So thought provoking and painful to think about, but so necessary in order to become a woman of integrity.

The Resolution For Women, put plainly and simply, is a must read. It will inspire and challenge you to live a more authentic and intentional life that will enable you to leave a godly legacy.

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"Book has been provided courtesy of David C Cook and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from B&H Publishing Group".