I Then Shall Live

Just wanted to share a song that stuck with me today and I have made my prayer. I have to be honest, I don’t usually listen to the Gaither Vocal band, but I love the words in this song entitle, “I Then Shall Live.”

I then shall live.
As one whose been forgiven.
I'll walk with joy to know my debts are paid.
I know my name is clear before my father.
I am his child and I am not afraid.
So greatly pardoned I'll forgive my brother
The Law of love I gladly will obey

I then shall live
as one whose learned compassion.
I've been so loved
That I'll risk loving too.
I know how fear builds walls instead of bridges
I'll dare to see anothers point of view
And when relationships demand commitment
Then I'll be there to care and follow through.

Your kingdom come around and through and in me
your power and glory,let them shine through me
Your hallowed name,oh may i bear with honor
And may your living kingdom come in me
THE BREAD OF LIFE! oh May I share with honor
And may you feed a hungry world through me

AMEN(3x)

Gaither Vocal Band

Review of “The Great Eight: How to Be Happy (even when you have every reason to be miserable)” by Scott Hamilton with Ken Baker

Scott Hamilton book

I’m a Thomas Nelson Book Review Blogger and chose this book for my first review. I love ice skating and have loved watching Scott Hamilton skate for years, so I was really excited to see that I could choose a book that he has written and was anxious to dig in and read!

In the book, Scott tells of the challenges he faced as a child and and as an adult and how he has remained to be happy even though his circumstances haven’t always been ideal. Though he was a very sickly child, Scott tells how ice skating helped him build his confidence and helped his health in a miraculous way. He learned discipline through his training partly by skating figure 8’s over and over as this builds the foundational skills for ice skaters. The  practicing of this technique is what he attributes to winning his olympic gold metal as well as the basis for the title of his book.

He also describes his challenges as an adult with being terminated from Ice Capades and getting cancer. Though he has faced several life-altering challenges, he has remained positive and describes 8 ways in which he maintains his superior attitude. He gives examples how he has applied these techniques throughout his own life as well as using examples from other skaters.

Though I highly respect Scott Hamilton and all he has been through, I thought this book was a bit superficial. I believe the book seems to be marketed as a self-help book and I would NOT recommend it as such. I’m glad his strategies of remaining positive and smiling even though the circumstances may be difficult work for him, but it seems like he tends to gloss over and simplify many of the events as well as how he managed each of them. The exception to this is his how he dealt with IMG (sports management company). He does go into detail about confrontation and how he worked out the relationship with Bob Kain.

For me, what I thought would be an exciting book that I was really looking forward to, turned out to be a book in which I was disappointed and won’t be recommending very often.

For more information on the book check out the Thomas Nelson website:

http://www.thomasnelson.com/consumer/product_detail.asp?sku=0785228942

Swag Bucks


Search & Win

Have you heard of Swag Bucks? I would love to introduce you. Swagbucks.com is a search engine much like google.com only better! If you use this site  as your search engine, you’ll earn swagbucks and you can redeem them for gift certificates and other items. Actually, they really have a variety of prizes you can get. How cool is that??! It really is legitimate.

I’ve researched and there is no magic formula as to how to earn the bucks. Just search as you normally would google. Typically, I’ve found that you only earn ‘bucks’ once per day (though that may be different for some). On Fridays, there is a chance that you can earn more. You can also follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

If you want to help me out, you can sign up through me by clicking here.

Go check them out! It’s kind of fun!!

Savings at Gymboree

Ok, I LOVE buying clothes for Mister!! And, I LOVE Gymboree quality, but their prices make me cringe. I want to share with you how to get some serious deals there. Right now, they offer Gymbucks. I’ll admit, I’ve never used them before, but read on a different site that they can make my dollars stretch further, so thought I’d give it a try. Besides, I haven’t purchased Mister clothes lately and he needs a new spiffin’ Easter outfit.

I got all of this…

img_13991

for $105.92!! And, I have $50 Gymbucks to use (when I spend another $100, I’ll get $50 off)! No, it’s not free, but it’s an amazing deal to me for that many high-quality, cute, non-frumpy clothes.

Let’s do some math…If I had paid regular price for all of it, it would have been $219.74. OUCH! Just so you know, that would not have happened! Most of it was on sale. If I had just bought it on sale, it would have been $149.88. Still, that price makes me edgy. I had a 20% off total purchase coupon in addition to the sale prices and woola! (According to my math, there’s a $10 discrepency there that the cashier and I tried for 20 minutes to figure out to no avail.) Now, I’ll admit, the total was a bit lower than that originally, but knowing that if I added just a couple more items, I’d get $50 Gymbucks rather than $25 off $50 purchase, it was a much better deal for me to add a little to get over the $100 mark to get the $50 Gymbucks instead. So, I paid full price for 2 items to get there. (That’ll teach me to not have my calculator along!!) I don’t consider $105 for 14 items all that shabby though.

When he’s outgrown them, I may try to sell them on Ebay or Craigslist. I’ve never tried this adventure, but I’ve heard that Gymboree clothes sell really well. If you notice, I get outfits that coordinate on purpose. First, I like a put-together look. Also, I’ve heard that it sells better, so why not?! I’ll give it a whirl and keep you posted!!

Has anyone else tried Gymbucks or tried to sell their Gymboree items? How about other brands that sell well? Any tips? I’ve heard that Janie & Jack (another division of Gymboree) sells well also and I LOVE their clothes too!!

DUH! I Mean, Dough!!

img_1385

What is it about the smell of fresh bread that gets my taste buds doing the happy dance? I LOVE the stuff!! The smell as it bakes, the warmth it gives as it comes out of the oven, the lovely golden color and the melted butter on top. YUM!

The only problem with it is that I have a difficult time kneading it and it’s rather time consuming to make it from scratch. (Sorry, bread out of a plastic bag from a store just doesn’t excite my taste buds. Too boring!) Well, I made a discovery the other day that everyone else probably already knows. It’s the ‘dough cycle’ on my bread machine. I have had a bread machine for many years and frankly, I didn’t get along with it very well. The loaves are a weird shape, the smell it produces while it bakes just isn’t quite right (I was using bread machine dough from a box) and though it tasted ‘ok’, it just wasn’t producing the results that I want. Until…

I read about a person making buns with her bread machine. Hmm…how did that work as I’m thinking they would come out looking a bit squarish if she baked them in the machine. (Obviously, I didn’t read the entire manual when I purchased my machine or thought it would be too complicated to do just dough. I mean, why wouldn’t you have the machine do all the work?!) Well, she used the ‘dough cycle’ and took the dough out when the machine was done on that cycle, shaped the buns and baked them in her oven. (Insert ‘light bulb moment’ for Lana!!)

I’ve heard that you have to be very precise in the measurements of the ingredients for a bread machine or it doesn’t come out right which also added to my trepidation of using the machine to it’s full capacity, but thought I’d get brave and give it a try. I brought up the machine from our basement, dusted it off (ok, more of a deep clean as it had been down there quite a while) and followed the recipe. It WORKED! I had some of the best buns I’ve ever made. (Admittedly, that is not saying a lot as I rarely make buns!!! But, they were really good!) I was so excited that the next day I made breadsticks. They turned out great too!! I got so excited that I made calzones for dinner that night and Greg said that they were the best I had ever made–um, a bit of honesty, those are the ONLY ones I’ve ever made!! But, they were good!!

The next day (I’m on a roll here people!!) I told my friend/neighbor about my new discover and she gave me a bunch of bread machine mixes she had as she doesn’t have a bread machine. I thought I’d do the neighborly thing and make one up for her. I put all the ingredients in the machine and pushed the button. Ten minutes later I went to check on it and the it wasn’t mixing. Hmm…as I looked on the counter I realized that I forgot to put the blade in the machine. DOUGH! I mean, DUH!! Let’s just say it didn’t work too well!! I did try to insert it and see what would happen, but it wasn’t pretty!!

If you have a bread machine, dust it off and give it another whirl! It’s quite fun and doesn’t take much time. You too can have warm bread!! Just don’t forget to insert the blade!!

Dear Cats and Dogs

I don’t know where this originated, but I LOVE it! With 3 cats, I can totally relate…If someone knows the origin, let me know as I’d love to give credit where credit is due.

The following was found posted very low on a refrigerator door.
 
Dear Dogs and Cats:
The dishes with the paw prints are yours and contain your food. The other dishes are mine and contain my food. Placing a paw print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for it becoming your food and dish, nor do I find that aesthetically pleasing in the slightest.
 
The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack. Racing me to the bottom is not the object. Tripping me doesn’t help because I fall faster than you can run.
 
I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. I am very sorry about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort, however. Dogs and cats can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other, stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that sticking tails straight out and having tongues hanging out on the other end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm.
 
For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom! If, by some miracle, I beat you there and manage to get the door shut, it is not necessary to claw, whine, meow, try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge in an attempt to open the door. I must exit through the same door I entered. Also, I have been using the bathroom for years – canine/feline attendance is not required.
 
The proper order for kissing is: Kiss me first, then go smell the other dog or cat’s butt. I cannot stress this enough.
 
Finally, in fairness, dear pets, I have posted the following message on the front door:

 

TO ALL NON-PET OWNERS WHO VISIT AND LIKE TO COMPLAIN ABOUT OUR PETS:

(1) They live here. You don’t.

(2) If you don’t want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. That’s why they call it ‘fur’-niture.

(3) I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.

(4) To you, they are animals. To me, they are adopted sons/daughters who are short, hairy, walk on all fours and don’t speak clearly.

 

Remember, dogs and cats are better than kids because they:

(1) eat less,

(2) don’t ask for money all the time,

(3) are easier to train,

(4) normally come when called,

(5) never ask to drive the car,

(6) don’t smoke or drink,

(7) don’t want to wear your clothes,

(8) don’t have to buy the latest fashions,

(9) don’t need a gazillion dollars for college and

(10) if they get pregnant, you can sell their children ….

 

 

Mommy Sanity

It’s been a bit since my last post since I’ve been out of town quite a bit. I want to share what keeps me sane as a mom–SANITY BREAKS! Now, I love my son more than anything in this world, but if I want to be a good mother, I need some time for myself. My son is 1 yr old and takes a LOT of energy. I wish that moms automatically got rewarded with the equivalent amount of energy that their children require, but life doesn’t work that way. Thus, the need for “mommy time”.

Yes, I have been slammed, questioned and judged for daring to spend time away from my son. It’s ok. I think more people need to take time away. I am very fortunate that I have people around me that I trust to take care of my son. Because of the breaks, my home is more peaceful. I’m not so stressed (I can tell when I haven’t had a break as I get VERY stressed and feel more on edge.) I’ve also been around moms who haven’t had a break. The tension seems higher, yelling is more frequent, and frankly, I don’t like to be around them.

My breaks are pretty scheduled twice a week. I’m very fortunate in that regard. I have 2 chronic illnesses, so Greg and I knew that I would need extra help before I even got pregnant. Not all moms need breaks as frequent or as long. Even 30 minutes after a long day can be a lifesaver.

We have also found that Greg and I need time away from R together. It builds our marriage. We admittedly don’t go on “date night” near as frequently as we should, but when we do, we love it! We need a strong marriage in order to have a strong foundation for R. Sometimes we need to do activities that aren’t child focused.

How to get a break? We have a babysitter twice a week where R goes to her house so I can sleep or get things done at home. Sometimes Greg takes R when possible. I’ve also heard of babysitting coops where moms trade-off babysitting. My parents are always happy to help out, though this is a little more challenging since they live 200 miles away.

If you haven’t had a break lately or find yourself stressing out, take a break! You may find that your outlook changes and life becomes more peaceful!