This Page

has been moved to new address

for His pleasure

Sorry for inconvenience...

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
for His pleasure: June 2011

This Page

has been moved to new address

for His pleasure

Sorry for inconvenience...

Redirection provided by Blogger to WordPress Migration Service
for His pleasure: June 2011

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A Little Tour {Dining Room/My Sewing Space}

Now we come to my little sewing space.

It's located... ...on our dining room table!

Because I do most of my sewing/creating during napping hours, and because one of the kiddos is always sleeping in our bedroom, all my stuff has gradually made its' way out to our dining area. I don't like this at all! I'm constantly cleaning it off or dragging more stuff out depending on if it's nap time, dinner time, or someone is coming over.

But you do whatcha gotta do, you know?! :-)

Sometimes at night, when the ducklings are tucked in, Steven and I will sit out here at opposite ends of the table and we'll work. He on his computer, me on mine or my sewing machine. Practically everything I sew or create gets the ok from him. :-) He is my constant sounding board and I like to think I am his.

If you sew, you know there is plenty of ironing that goes with it. Thank the good Lord that Jenny taught me this early in the game and saved me much heartbreak!
There really is no ideal spot for our ironing board, so it drifts from here, or to our bedroom, or to the bathroom with the laundry room. Of course, I always wish for a spacious room to just have everything in one place, but that's not God's plan for me right now. And I guess I'm ok with that. To be honest, it depends on what day you ask me. ;-)

Mostly, I am SO grateful for this apartment we live in now. It is not perfect and it can get crazy, but we've found a workable routine that works for us! Most people walk in to our apartment and are surprised. It really doesn't feel super cramped; nor does it feel like an apartment. And that is the grace of God! We were able to cut our possessions in half through selling, giving, or donating when we moved out here. We've become more disciplined with organizing and cleaning to allow routines to flow more smoothly. We "travel light" these days which helps our "stuff" budget and brings more opportunities for travel.

In general, life is simplified!

Today I truly am grateful.

Labels: , , ,

Monday, June 27, 2011

A Little Tour {Master Bedroom}

The term "Master Bedroom" is really used loosely around here and I can't help but chuckle when I think of the term. Our bedroom is more like the "Family Room". We originally envisioned all three of the ducklings sleeping in the second bedroom by now. Uh...not gonna happen anytime soon! We fear for Keller's safety enough during the daylight hours, much less leaving him with those crazy girlies during the night time hours.

So Keller lives in here with us.
And this is his little corner...
...literally. :-)The basket attached underneath of the bassinet holds extra diapers, toys, burp cloths, etc. He's about to grow out of the bassinet, so we need to find some furniture to get rid of in order for his crib to fit.

This is another view of the room.
You can see our TV hanging on the wall to the left, which leads to many a family movie night in bed. The desk underneath stores all sorts of fabric, sewing supplies, unfinished projects, office supplies, DVD player, and all 5 remotes. {Someone still has yet to explain this to me!} That chair is also a project I wish to tackle making a slipcover for {which I mentioned when I first started this blog}.
That nightstand is the coolest piece of furniture I own and actually opens up to a vintage robin egg blue sewing machine underneath. It was passed on down to me by my grandmother and always reminds me of her.Steven's books and some work files and paperwork are stored underneath. His guitar stays under the window - thank you Mom and Dad for the protective guitar case for Christmas!

And below is the view of the room from the other side.
That nightstand doubles as a filing cabinet. It also holds my jewelry and Bible Study books and Bible on top.The door to the right is our bathroom and the door to the left leads to our closet...
Our closet holds anything and everything. Our dresser is in there along with luggage, seasonal clothing, more fabric, tools, paperwork, DVD's, etc.

I am learning you have to make every inch of space count here in order to keep things running smoothly!

Do any of you have tips on how you maximize your space?

Labels: , ,

A Little Tour {The Laundry Room}

I haven't done anything "interior design" related lately. The thought of us possibly moving dampened my spirits about finishing up the girls' room and our master bedroom. I've made a little progress in the girls' bedroom and really only have a few odds and ends to tie up. But instead, we've been hitting the pool while we can. :-)

Yesterday afternoon, I took pictures of our little home so I could give you a full tour of where we've been living for the past 6 months! I took photos of even the mundane so you could see a little how we tick around here. If this isn't your thing, than this just isn't your post!
{Just a little warning. :-)}

First up?

~ The Laundry Room

It is located in our 2nd bathroom that is just outside of the girls' bedroom. This location has actually been really convenient for me. I switch loads during potty training sessions with Shiloh or match socks during bath time with the girlies.You can barely walk in there since I have the dryer on the left.
And the washer on the right.
In between, is the one and only hamper and a rolling suitcase holding scrapbook supplies and photo albums.
One of the first things I asked Steven to do when we moved in, was to add extra shelving. If you live in a small space, I would say this little touch will make your life so much easier! You can buy the ones pictured from Lowes or Home Depot and cut the wire shelving to desired length. We didn't buy all the extra finishing touches that you can add to make it look more finished because this is just an apartment and temporary for us.
As you can see, we use our shelves to their full potential.
Stacked all the way to the ceiling with loose photos, scrapbooking supplies, memorabilia, linens, cleaning supplies, and laundry detergents.
The wire shelving also allows you to hang things.
I hang ironed shirts for Steven, air-dry clothing items, and stain treated clothing on my shelves.
And the best thing is? We can hide it all away! We bought a $4 shower curtain rod from Wal Mart and hung a shower curtain I made for a bathroom back at our house in SC.
{Can't you tell Keller thinks it's swell?!}
Speaking of Keller, isn't he getting SO big?! He can scootch around on the floor already and he's not even 5 months old yet...someone else thinking TROUBLE?! :-)

I am kind of a fanatic about keeping the laundry going and caught up since we quite literally don't have room for it to accumulate in the laundry room. I am good about keeping it going, but bad about folding and putting away. I take it out to our couch to fold and separate into piles...
And then it gets put away. Eventually.
I found some pretty laundry rooms I thought I would share. I swear I would get my laundry folded right away if I had some of these rooms to work in. But then again. Probably not. It sure would be more fun!
inspiration contemporary laundry room
Love all the natural colors. And those tiles? Ahhhh....Laundry Room traditional laundry room
Love the glass canisters, painted wood floors, and the farmhouse table in the center of the room!
BY HARDROCK CONSTRUCTION traditional laundry room
And this one above is my favorite! Everything about it just speaks to me. :-) The window. The ceiling. The big sink. The wood. It's all so lovely and makes me smile.

{Photos all taken from
Clicking on the individual pictures will also take you directly there.}

Labels: , ,

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Blueberry Sour Cream Pancakes

We made these pancakes for our Mother/Daughter slumber party...they turned out simply delicious! I like to cook something special on Saturday mornings so I'll be adding this recipe to our weekend stash.

The sour cream makes them soft and moist {a must for me}. I used plain yogurt instead of the sour cream the second time I made these since I had run out of the latter. I also have not tried the blueberry sauce, {We just ate ours plain or with syrup.} but I think it would be delicious from the picture in my cookbook.
Hope you enjoy these as much as our family!

Blueberry Sour Cream Pancakes

~ Blueberry Sauce ~

1/2 cup sugar

2 tbsp cornstarch

1 cup cold water

4 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

~ Pancakes ~

2 cups all-purpose flour

1/4 cup sugar

4 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

2 eggs

1 1/2 cups milk

1 cup {8 oz.} sour cream

1/3 cup butter, melted

1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries*

For the sauce: In large saucepan, combine the sugar and cornstarch. Stir in the water until smooth. Add blueberries. Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened. Remove from the heat; cover and keep warm.

For the pancakes: In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Combine the eggs, milk, sour cream and butter. Stir into flour mixture just until moistened. Fold in the blueberries. Pour batter by 1/4 cupful onto a greased hot griddle. Turn when bubbles form on top; cook until the second side is golden brown. Serve with blueberry topping.
Makes about 20 pancakes and 3 1/2 cups of topping.

*Editor's note: If using frozen blueberries, do not thaw before adding to batter.

My thoughts: I didn't think 1/4 cup of sugar dispersed through 20 pancakes was that bad...or should I feel guilty?

Labels: ,

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Another First

I made my first Oklahoma baby gift this week! I love saying Oklahoma for some reason. It just seems so peculiar to me that that's even in my vocabulary these days...never ever thought I would know where towns were here much less live here!

We took quite the drive all through the beautiful farm lands in search of a house last night. How I love the beautiful scenery here! The girls never lack for enterainment as we're driving...we point out all the planes {since we live close to the airport} and cows, horses, and goats. There are plenty let me assure you. We live "in town", but you don't have to drive far to get away from it all. I would love to find a house to rent in the country with some land - quiet and restful.

We went and looked at 4 houses and frankly {I'll spare you all the details} we're having a very difficult time. We set up an appointment with this one man to look at a beautiful historical house built in the 20's with all those awesome solid wood doors. We drove up and it had such charm and I really really wanted it, but the man had rented it out {supposedly within the 24 hrs. we had spoken and set up the appointment} without even calling to tell us not to come. Ahhh! I was so bummed and kept reminding myself through tears, "God has a plan. You just don't know what it is yet."

That's really hard to do. It sure does help when you've seen His hand in your life and can remind yourself of all the times before where He's lead you. Clearly and safely directed you down paths you would have never found yourself in if it weren't for Him. I guess that's why I find myself saying Oklahoma these days. If you think of us, please pray the Lord would pour out wisdom for us as we try to discern what's best for our family.

This is completely unrelated to Oklahoma talk, but I just had to share these with you since I wish I could keep them. Steven brought these Naya flats home for me from his trip.
They are 9.5's and are too small for me. He thought they looked "big" {thanks hun! :-)} and would fit me. Nada. So they're listed on ebay now. Click on the picture to be taken to the listing if you're interested.

Labels: , ,

Monday, June 20, 2011

Freezable Meals: First Recipe

As promised, I am beginning to share some of the freezable meals I'm trying that our family loves! This first month of planning our meals ahead and having a good chunk of the meals already prepared and in the freezer made my life so much easier! I am already planning my grocery list for the month of July and have some new recipes on my list to try. It really is well worth the time it takes to organize and plan ahead. My afternoons run much more smoothly, allowing more time during nap time for "fun stuff" instead of coming up with a good plan for dinner.

Please let me know if you try these, how it works for your family, and if you have any meal planning/freezing tips for me.

This first recipe below was simply delicious! It came from our Pastor's wife in South Carolina who got me started with this meal planning/freezing thing in the first place. She's just awesome like that! :-) I love the fact that this one is cooked in a crock pot. Crock pots are great inventions for us mothers. If you don't take advantage of yours, you're really missing out! I get all my ingredients prepared and started in the morning while feeding the girls their breakfast and then we get to enjoy the aromas all day long!

~Peanut Butter Pork Roast ~

1.5-2lbs pork tenderloin (see my note below)
1 onion, sliced in rings
1/4 cup soy sauce (I put a little teriyaki sauce in too)
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons white wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar)
3 tablespoons water
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup creamy natural peanut butter
2 tablespoons chopped peanuts (garnish; optional)
1 lime, cut in wedges
cilantro (optional)


Use a 4-6 quart crockpot. Put onion slices into the bottom of your crockpot.
Put the pork on top. Add brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar, water, garlic,
and peanut butter. No need to stir--the peanut butter needs to melt before
you can do so. Cover and cook on low for 8 hours, or on high for 4-6. The
pork will be more tender the longer you cook it. 1 hour before serving,
flip the meat over in the crockpot to allow the other side to soak up the
peanutbuttery goodness. Garnish with chopped peanuts, and serve with
lime wedges and cilantro. The lime juice mixed with the peanut butter is

Notes: I used a 4lb. Boneless pork loin roast and doubled the sauce.
I cooked it for 9 hours on low and it was perfect. I slightly shredded the
pork. We eat it over jasmine rice or brown rice, and we love the
lime juice squeezed all over it. It makes enough for 3 meals for our family.
Freeze cooked pork with sauce in Ziplocs. Freeze your cooked rice next to
it. Thaw, reheat in oven or microwave. Serve hot!

Labels: , , ,

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Steven went away on business - for 2 weeks. No small ordeal. :-( So we've busied ourselves with every known activity - and it didn't include blogging - in case you were wondering where I've been. Story time at the library, church hunting, Bible studies, pool time, play dates, a birthday party, walks around Wal Mart, Sam's Club, {Thanks, Tammy!} Target, the Mall, etc. Anything to keep us busy and out of the house!

We threw a mom/daughter slumber party in the mix and it was craziness and great fun all rolled into one!

Would you believe our tiny little apartment can hold 3 moms and 6 kiddos - all 3 and under?!!!

I was proud of our little home holding up so well!




Admit it...your jealous of Shiloh's morning look. ;-)
For breakfast, I mixed up the batter for some Blueberry pancakes and Ricki cooked them to perfection while I fed baby Keller...

{Rachel feeding her little boy - Israel.}

They turned out delicious and fit within my new sugar parameters so I'll have to share the recipe here with you very soon! {Check out my new "Recipes" tab up top where I've put links to the recipes I've shared on here.}

{Delicious fruit salad made by Rachel.}

We all had such a good time and made some wonderful memories. Thank you both for the looong girl talks, pedicures and manicures, and the movie. We'll do it again sometime!


Hospitality is one of my insecurities. I'm afraid the bathroom won't be clean enough. Or I won't have enough serving spoons. Or I'll not have the food all timed correctly. Or I'll say something dumb during the dinner conversation. My absolute worst fear is that I'll make something one of the guests won't like and then they'll have to fake that they do like it. Ahhh! I usually end up feeling like I should make a Thanksgiving feast so there will be plenty of options to choose from. Oh how I stress myself out.

I'm discovering that practice, practice, practice is so key! Sorry for those of you reading this who I've practiced on!

You don't know how much I wanted to use that house in SC to get over my insecurities and begin learning how to host. I even prayed when we got the house, "Lord, if we end up buying this, please help me give it back to you." My idea of giving back was to have people over and maybe host missionaries overnight when we got the house in some kind of order. I had no idea His idea was to literally give it back.

There was this one time we had a family over and my friend snagged her shirt on a nail jutting out of the doorway. I felt so terrible and begrudged to God about my living conditions. Why couldn't we have a perfect house with everything actually working and fulfilling its' function? No 2x4's gaping. No nails jutting out. No exposed flooring. No windows with cardboard-stuffed panes. No construction equipment permanently living in my kitchen. No paint rollers in my refrigerator. No endless dust from sheet rock covering everything I owned.

So here we find ourselves in a 2-bedroom apartment with three kids and I still find myself praying, "God, when we get a house..."

My house will never be big enough, new enough, remodeled enough, perfect enough. I'll never have enough closets, cabinets, or counter top space. Shame on me! It doesn't matter...

So my new prayer is, "Lord, help me to use what I have, for You."

Help me to be organized enough so that it doesn't feel like we live in an 1100 square foot, 2-bedroom apartment. Help me to be thankful that less space means less to clean. Help me to be thankful for my running water and a pool within walking distance. Help me to be thankful for the dump trucks and lawn workers that wake me up early in the morning, reminding me to pray. Thank you for the neighbors we hear piddling around upstairs, and the opportunities to be a witness for You. Thank you for all the dogs the girls can watch out our window without us having to take care of them ourselves. Thank you for the parking spaces that are sometimes available and sometimes far away, giving us exercise. Thank you for no yard which frees our weekends for family outings. Give me a grateful spirit for the good and the bad. I never know how "the bad" can be used for Your glory.

And that's what I want. I do Lord. I promise. Even though I complain, even though I pray selfish prayers, even though I want what I think I want. Help me to want Your glory to overshadow everything that seems unfair and...well...small.

And help me not to act as if I'm a walking sacrifice.

Please let me to allow Your joy, oh Lord, to pulse through my veins, come out the cracks of my smile, and flow from my spirit. Let there not be a sigh, but a prayer of thankfulness. For YOU are the ONE to be praised. Let Your name be glorified by my life Lord. Privilege me enough to use me in whatever way You can.

Even if it's small.

Labels: ,

Friday, June 10, 2011

Sugar Update & Faithfulness

I'm going through sugar withdrawal....BAD! I mean moody...grouchy...just. the. works. You know? Each day gets better, but I have to admit I've snuck some semi-sweet chocolate chips now and then since the chocolate milk ran out. And there's been an occasional muffin or two that I've grabbed out of the freezer when I've been on the run and in a pinch. Okay. It was 2 today. You caught me. There. You feel better? :-)

But each day gets a little easier with less and less cravings. And...

I know you all aren't going to believe me...but I've already lost a pound of the stubborn 12 pounds of baby weight leftover!!! I could not be more stoked! I've been teeter tottering for a while so I knew when the scale dropped for 2 days in a row that it was true pound I had lost and it got me all motivated again.

I've made a few other changes too. Mixed in with the sugar addiction, is a diet coke issue {caffeine free}. But please don't tell anyone who knows my dad because they'll say I'm just like him. What's worse is they'll probably tell him and his head will get all big and then I'll get a phone call about the glories of being in the diet coke club and the "like father like daughter" talk and then he'll inevitably talk me into drinking it again. Man. I'm talking myself into going a grabbing one from the fridge just from the thought of it.

{I said no to myself; in case you're wondering.}

So, I've started drinking lots and lots of water instead with an occasional diet coke and I already feel better!

I've also started going to bed earlier (before 10:30pm) so that I can say yes to the alarm clock in the morning. Usually it's 6am but some mornings Keller wakes me up earlier and then it's just easier to get up anyway. This morning was the first morning I went outside pretty early to spend some time in the Word. We ladies were talking at Bible Study about how gorgeous it is outside in the morning and how the presence of God is so near feeling. So I decided to do it. I'm an outdoor person anyway, but it's hard to get any privacy where I live right now. Not only is it pretty cramped in this apartment and any little noise will wake someone up who will then wake someone else up...etc., but if you walk outside you are faced with a gazillion windows and balconies that are all facing you. It just doesn't feel very near-to-God-feeling. More like peeping-Tomish. So I walked for a ways to get some privacy and do you know how God rewarded me? With this...
It was such a huge encouragement to me to see that beautiful reminder of His faithfulness. Have you ever stopped to think about what a big deal God's faithfulness is? I think you probably realize it more and more the older you get and the more you screw up. Geesh and I'm only 23. Maybe that's just me. But I do.

~His faithfulness~

Wow! I thank God for His faithfulness to me. Not giving up on me when I could care less about His will for my life, wanting my own will instead. The times I say, "God I'll do this for you. But this. It's too hard. I can't do it Lord. I just can't."

How hurtful to Him must I be. How much He must long for me to allow Him to work. To make changes in me. To convict me of sin. To forgive me. To comfort me. To love me.

But my Lord is ever faithful.

Even through the sugar cravings. ;-)

Psalm 36:5
"Your mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens;Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds."

Labels: ,

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

My Sugar Addiction

I have a love/hate relationship with sugar. The love usually wins. :-)
The worst part? I've been kind of convicted about it recently.

The degree I was working on when Steven and I decided to get married was Nutrition. I loved it! I'd like to think I know a little about healthful living, but the more I read, the more I realize I don't. Isn't that the best part about getting older?

Then...I stumble upon this article from Gwyneth Paltrow's amazing blog
and I realize anew how much I don't know...

...And the conviction was almost too much to bear.

I have to admit my feathers get a little ruffled when people start trying to push their eating lifestyle on others. I think the good Lord is big enough to take care of leading each family by Himself. So, that's not what I'm doing here and it's not what I gathered from this article that Gwyneth Paltrow puts on her blog. I found it just so helpful, informative, very clearly written, great reminders, and new {for me} information about the power of sugar, that I just really wanted to share it with you!

I highly encourage you sit down for a second and read it.

I'm kinda sad I did, but really should!
He takes an awesome approach and shows how sugar has the same kind of effects on the body as drugs such as cocaine without going into a bunch of boring chemical details. You will find it so interesting if you're the main chef around your house like I am. ;-)

So, the long and short of it is: I'm going on a semi-sugar sabbatical for a while.
Not cold turkey. But a slow weaning process.
I've come to grips with the fact I'm addicted to sugar and sugar substitutes so I'm definitely beginning some diet-analysis around here and that includes a cessation with the baking until I can find a better balance. With the Lord's help, we're going to get a little more organized about what we put in our mouths around here so we can weed as much of it out as possible. {And, Shiloh, let's cut to the chase. Toothbrushes dipped in dirty bleach water for mopping don't cut it.} In the meantime, I'm drinking chocolate milk to help with the sugar cravings. Is that any better?

This is one of the reasons I am starting to freeze ahead some healthy meals. {If you have any favorites, please, please email me! Found under the "About Me" tab up top.} I have been wanting to meal plan for a while now and I've finally buckled down and decided to just do it {with some flexibility}. I also found this post from Keep Home Simple to be helpful and very up my alley of planning.

I'll do my best to post some of the recipes I try {that are successful} since some of you have already inquired. I do not - by any means - consider myself a good cook. But I do so love it and am trying to learn as best as I can.

I discovered Gywneth Paltrow's blog a while ago and can I say how much I love her style!
{Needless to say, her cookbook is going on my wish list with some of the YMCA money.}

Life is a balancing act...I hope we find ours with sugar ASAP!!!

Hope you enjoy cooking for your family as much as I do ladies!