Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009

This year we went over to Charlie's parents house for Thanksgiving lunch. We obviously had a great time, but Abigail did not have a morning nap, and then they both decided not to really nap at all this day, so needless to say it was a long day. Abigail is walking up a storm now. She hardly even crawls anymore.

This year I am extremely thankful. Last year being one week from having Abigail (and extremely large), and Jackson not speaking, I was not a very thankful person (I am constantly working on trying to be as positive as I can). Jackson said this year that he is thankful for church, and mommy and daddy (and in this order..ha!).

Here are my top three things I am thankful for:
  1. Jesus healing Jackson and him being able to talk. I get very emotional thinking and talking about the first time he was able to tell me he loved me. Jesus is our only hope. He is the one who healed Jackson. Jesus is the one who heard our cries and healed him. Our hope is built on nothing less than Jesus Christ and his righteousness.
  2. My baby girl being so much more healthier than my baby boy was at this point. She has had only one ear infection and she has been congested and able to fight illnesses off. Baby girls seem so much stronger than baby boys.
  3. My very patient husband (and parents)! They are always there for me no matter what and in so many different ways.
This year I am extremely thankful.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Green Bean Casserole Recipe

Tomorrow I am going to try this "Best Green Bean Casserole" recipe from It has lots of cheese in it, and looks yummy. Here is the recipe:


  • 2 (14.5 ounce) cans green beans, drained
  • 1 (10.75 ounce) can condensed cream of mushroom soup
  • 1 (6 ounce) can French fried onions
  • 1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. Place green beans and soup in a large microwave-safe bowl. Mix well and heat in the microwave on HIGH until warm (3 to 5 minutes). Stir in 1/2 cup of cheese and heat mixture for another 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer green bean mixture to a casserole dish and sprinkle with French fried onions and remaining cheese.
  3. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) oven until the cheese melts and the onions just begin to brown.
The only money saving tip I have for this week is to read money saving blogs. I was reading money saving mom's blog and got $15 off any purchase from kodak. I got both my mom and Charlie's mom one of their Christmas gifts (I usually give each of our parents three gift each for Christmas). Yay!

I did get to go shopping Saturday night while Mimi and Pop Pop kept the babies. I still had Ann Taylor Loft gift cards from my parents and Aunt Sandi left over from my birthday and was able to find something to wear to my high school reunion which is this weekend (we will be missing Sunday for it). They had a friends and family 30% off coupon of our entire purchase. Click here to get it (and if it does not print out all you have to do is mention it and you will get it). I really like Ann Taylor because I can shop online and write down what I would like to try on. I was able to get three tops/sweaters, and a dress with my gift card. Almost everything I wrote down that I wanted to try ended up working which is rare (Abigail has had a throat virus with fever so that is why I have not blogged much this week...she is doing much better now).

Do yall have any money saving ideas to share with us this week (especially during the holiday season)?

Friday, November 20, 2009

Fun Friday: Their First Time on Santa's Lap

We had a great time at Vista Lights last night. They had so many fun things for the kids to do. Jackson has never been to see Santa Clause. We just have never wanted to stand in long lines at the mall for someone he did not even know about. However, this year Jackson is a little crazy about Santa Clause (I think from the Wiggle's Christmas DVD). Most morning he comes into my room and whispers "Santa Clause" in my ear (I will write what we do about Santa later). Jackson was in a complete trance seeing Santa Clause, and well you can see Abigail's reaction to Santa. Ha!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

My Babies are Little Hams!

I was trying to get a picture of Abigail by herself with her fun pony tail that her teachers did for her at church last night. Jackson gets jealous of Abigail getting any attention now, so he came to pose for the shot. I love them more and more every day which I did not think was possible. I am so thankful for their lively, fun, energetic, happy personalities that God has given them!

PS- Abigail took 6 steps in a row yesterday. Only two more weeks and my baby will be 1 year old!

2 Minute Video by John Piper

Charlie on his blog has a great 2 minute video by John Piper on how not to raise a little Pharisee.

Check it out here

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Wednesday's Word: Hebrews 12

Today's daily reading was Hebrews 12. Hebrews 12 is a special chapter for me because these are the verses we chose to be the main verses read at our wedding.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God."

Different Challenges in Disciplining a 3 year old

Disciplining a 3 year old is very different for us, than discipline a 2 year old.

When a 2 year old does wrong, you immediately need to discipline your child or you are really not training them, because they have already forgotten what they did.

Now, that Jackson is 3 years old, he remembers how and why he was bad hours later.

Our main struggle with Jackson is when we go out into public. At the house, he knows his boundaries and when I see him getting bored we just do school time and he is fine.

When we go out in public, the rules seem to be changing for him, and he has total melt downs. He refuses to go bathroom bathroom (you know what I mean) out in pubic, and I really do think that is part of us behavioral problems when we are out.

We watched Supper Nanny the other night, and realized we were ignoring some of his defiant behavior out in public because it was the easy thing to do (Supper Nanny is a good show).

The major instances we had last week was when I took him to Walmart one night. He has been having nightmares every Friday night (please pray these go away), and so he had a 3 hour nap the next day. After his nap, he was very hyper and did fine while we were in Walmart. Then, we go to check out, and I let him down to help take the groceries out. After we are done, I try to put him back in the cart, and he has the biggest breakdown ever. He starts screaming and crying and I literally cannot get him in the buggy. I was not going to not put him back in the buggy, because if I did that it would teach him that if you yell, scream, and kick, you get your way.

I somehow managed to get him back and in, and thought long and hard on how to discipline him for this. After getting some advice, I decided we would try to talk to him when we got home about his actions. Charlie took him to his room and asked him if he was bad in Walmart. He said yes, and explained to Charlie on how he would not get back in the buggy. After feeling comfortable that he knew exactly what he had done, Charlie gave him a spanking with our spanking spoon. I really think he felt remorse for his actions for once. He also is going through a phase where he does not want to hold my hand and sometimes he tries to run out into parking lots...ah!

So here our some of our guidelines with Jackson
  • If he does something that can hurt himself or others he gets a spanking (with our wooden spoon). I usually do say, if you do that again you will get a spanking and bring out the spanking spoon. If we are in public, I have found it very helpful to just whisper in his ear in a calm voice, that what he is doing is wrong and why his actions are wrong. I proceed to explain to him what is going to happen if he keeps jumping on the chair, etc. I certainly do not want to embarrass him in public.
  • Sometimes when correcting his bad attitude we just correct him over and over again. For instance, he went through a phase where everything was "no." Every day probably a hundred times a day, I would say, "Don't tell mommy no, unless I ask you a question.Then, if the answer is no, say "no ma'am." I was so excited after about 5 days, he would say these entire sentences back to me!
  • Also, sometimes I do give him time out if he is into everything and not listening. However, if he intentionally throws something at his sister, he gets a spanking. I do not give more than three spanking a day (which has only happened once). If he keeps on disobeying, I do put him in his room and make him stay there for 3 minutes (since he is three). I think a time out chair, or mat can be helpful in training your child over and over again on how they should act in certain situations or how that should speak to you.
What about you? What have you found more challenging about disciplining your child once they turn 3 years old? What has worked for you?

The best Christian practical book I have read is "Don't Make Me Count to Three" by Plowman. I think I need to read it again right now (She has a new book entitled "No More Whining" that I really want to read soon).

Ps- We went out to eat for the first time since my birthday with just the four of us. Abigail wanted to get down, and she was tired, so needless to say it was not a fun experience. I do not think we will be going out to eat again with a waitress for another two months, just to recover from that experience. I really think 1-2 years old is such a hard age, because they do not understand so much and they cannot communicate accurately to you what they need.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Picture Monday: KK is in our "Family"

Jackson is really starting to understand what having an extended family is all about (aunts, uncles, etc). He was so excited to see Aunt KK (my sister Kelly). He kept saying, "KK is in our family." We also have this family puzzle that has helped him also understand that Kelly is his aunt. We had a great visit with her this weekend, and I was so thankful she was able to keep Abigail while we went to the GI doctor with Jackson.

Jackson is doing so well talking right now and is really started to say sentence all day long. We are having some discipline issues with Jackson (more on that later), but I am so thankful on how he talks in 4 or 5 word sentences all day long, it is hard to be too frustrated with Jackson right now because I just thank God for loosening his tongue all day (he has great tongue movement which is such a huge answer to our prayers).

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wednesday's Word: Power over Fear

"When I am afraid, I will trust in You."

Psalm 56:3

Last Sunday I taught my 4th grade girls Sunday School class on Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. The title of the lesson from Lifeway was "Power Over Fear," it was a great lesson.

It is so funny, it seems like I am the one who always teaches on worry, fear, etc. Worrying is definitely a struggle for me.

I made all the girls right down on their sheet that:

God works out all the bad things that happen to you for your good and His glory.

Even though bad things will happen here on earth, God uses it to show his glory and will use it for a purpose (Romans 8). Even if you fail a test, which many of my girls were concerned about, God can use it to help you become more like him. God can use it to help you die to yourself and depend on him, which is an ultimate goal God has for your life.

I have realized that worrying comes straight from your thought life, and if you do not believe that God is in control and is a good God, you will live in a life that is full of anxiety over everything.

Some application from the lesson was for the girls to:

Pray when they are afraid
Remember Bible verses
Remember that God is with you or
talk to an adult.

What do you do when you are afraid?

I usually do pray that in Jesus powerful name that _____________ will not happen. I also pray that if the bad thing does happen that God will show me how he is using it for my good and to show His glory. I also pray that God gives me a peace that surpasses all understanding. Our hope is not in the temporal things of this world, but in our risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Tuesday's Tip: We Finally Met Our $150 Weekly Budget for Out to Eat Food and Groceries

I am so excited that we finally meet our $150 budget for both groceries and out to eat food. We went to Charleston last week so our out to eat budget was a lot!

$94.51 spent on out to eat food
$45.20 at Walmart---I think that is a record.

How did I only spend $45.20 at Walmart? It was just really luck. All I really had to buy was formula, nursery water, blueberry muffins, roles, etc. I had stocked up the week before and just did not run out of hardly anything this week. Last night, Jackson and I went to Walmart and I knew I was very close to meeting my goal so I hardly bought anything. I will have to go back Thursday for a big trip.

So, here are my three money saving tips for the week (since meeting my budget was just luck).

  1. Get your coupons organized! I like the Hannah Hansen organizer, but she might not be taking any more orders right now. However, I saw some on ebay. And of course, order the paper for at least the weekend for the coupons. It is worth it!
  2. Know by heart how much items costs that you buy every week. I use to write these items down and keep them in my planner, but I think I actually have most of them memorized now after almost two years of couponing.
  3. Target has some great deals this week. They sent me some coupons for their generic brands. I am switching Abigail soon to their formula. Click here to see money saving mom's post.
* Also $30 Weekly Grocery Challenge has a good post on Menu Planning here. Click here to see the recipe for Crockpot Chicken Soup.

What is your money saving tip for the week?

Monday, November 09, 2009


Molly, my grandmother, got to meet Abigail. Abigail is very blessed to still have two great grandmothers living. After Abigail was born, Jackson had therapy at the house on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so we had a hard time planning a week to go up to Raleigh to see her (not to mention Jackson's surgery in March). This Fall, we have had soccer every week and weekend for the last 8 weeks (soccer is now over). Molly's last living sister passed away last week and the funeral was in Charleston, so we were able to go visit the family down there on Thursday.

It was such a special time, Abigail babbled to Molly in her sweet voice, and Molly told her that she loved Abigail so much and that she would always love her, and to never forget that. Me and mom's eyes definitely swelled up with tears. I cannot believe how great she looks for being ninety years old! I am just so thankful that we were able to see her, because everything seemed to be fighting us to be able to see her. Jackson, dad, and Charlie were able to walk down to the marsh from her house, and it was a beautiful day.

Look out for Tuesday's tip tomorrow. Last week was so busy and Abigail had a cough so I was holding her more than usually.

Monday, November 02, 2009

Fall Festival / Halloween 2009

Towards the end of the Fall Festival.
Cow riding a horse. Ha!
We are so proud of Jackson. He was very brave to ride the pony (last year not so brave).
Cow milking a cow.
My baby girl's first Halloween. This is the same costume that cousin Jake had for his first Halloween costume and it was also Jackson's costume one year. We have gotten good use out of is such a cute costume.
Charlie and his sister Lauren. It is so wonderful that are babies are so close it age. We all have a great time when we get together.
Jackson was so excited to trick or treat this year. We watched Little Einsteins "Happy Halloween" all week, and every day he would ask if we were going trick or tricking today with cousin Jake.

This is her normal position in the stroller. Laid back...especially during soccer games.
Jackson and cousin Jake. Jackson copied whatever Jake did that night. He had so much fun!

Halloween Day: We had a great time trick or treating with Charlie's sister and her babies. Jackson was so excited. My thought is that trick or treating can be a great way to get out into the community, meet people, and reach people. Next year, we are going to tape a card on the candy inviting kids to First Baptist. We just had trick or treaters at our door from 7-8 pm.

Fall Festival: The Fall Festival was yesterday and it was incredible! This year they had a Fall Festival Committee and they worked so hard. They had a talent show (which was one of my favorites), a tumble bus, rides, pictures, entrainment, food, prizes, cake walk, etc. They also had a schedule posted which was very helpful. It was perfectly planned, and Charlie counted last night when he got home that over 700 people registered (many visitors). It was a wonderful outreach event.