Tuesday, January 17, 2017

two more feet

In June we'll need 18 shoes to get out of the door. :D

I'm so thrilled to tell you that if the Lord wills, baby #7 will be coming this summer!! :D Our Father is exceedingly kind to grant us this sweet blessing again. :D We are so very thankful and excited!! :) 

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of the womb a reward. Psalm 27:3

(Gender reveal coming soon!!)

Monday, January 16, 2017

we survived + my favorite kind of weekend

Our weekend was superb. :D It's SO weird to have nearly 80 degree weather in mid-January, but it's also downright wonderful to be able to be outside and not freezing. :D The kids can play outside again and they have so much fun playing basketball until dark:

I'm proud to say we survived the winter. It was tough, but we took it in stride:


Our warm weekend started out with a date to Texas Roadhouse:

And ended with this loveliness (finally, our date wasn't on Sunday!):

On Saturday, we were glad for the unseasonably good weather so we could scrub the house:

And then the kids and I headed to an outdoor birthday party:

Sunday was filled with church, lunch with friends, and then some downtime to read, watch a documentary, and play games. (I talked myself out of doing any cleaning and took a real Sabbath break. :)) The kids made up a Bible trivia game show for the two of us, complete with buzzers and prizes (and tough questions!):

And somehow we made it to Monday again... :)

Here are my goals for this week:
::  do  ::
exercise 6x 
get ready to go back to CC (lunches, clothes, showers. prep crockpot meal)
clean up mudroom + laundry (purge extra clothes and shoes)
find another rack/create new system for shoes
move summer clothes to spare closet
drink 40- 80 ounces of water/day

::  read  ::
the Bible alone daily: 1 Peter, Psalms 3 chapters, Proverbs 
George Mueller biography
visit library and get a new book to start
::  learn  ::
1 Peter study by Jen Wilkin 4x
Dave Ramsey podcast on easy runs
2 teaching Piper videos/ 2 Washer videos (listening to while working on laundry/cleaning/cooking/kids outside)

::  be  ::
grateful in the tiring. Two weeks back in the routine and I think we may be losing the just-got-back-from-break energy. We’re settling into regular work and schedules again. :)

:: dinners  ::
spaghetti + salad
bean burritos + Spanish rice
beans + rice
baked potatoes + broccoli
oatmeal + eggs
dinner out

One would think with this many zipper pouches I'd be organized, but... hmmm. ;)

Thursday, January 12, 2017

GW: saving ridiculous amounts of $$ once again

Not long ago I was pleasantly surprised to find that our local Goodwill (GW) had recently lowered their prices! For a while there, everything was getting so high that I stopped going altogether. We ran in a few weeks ago to look for something specific, and I was so happy to find the cheap old GW I used to love! I only purchased a few little things that we could use, but it still turned out to be a pretty great thrifting day.

I can't remember ever seeing Tupperware at Goodwill before, so when I spotted this veggie tray in perfect condition with a lid for $2, I picked it right up:

My mom actually sold Tupperware when I was a little bitty girl and I have fond memories of most of our storage being really sturdy, useful Tupperware (which she STILL has most of like 25+ years later!).

We washed and used it right away for Christmas, and something about the presentation and the ease of getting dip made the kids eat even more veggies!

Then the husband was possibly even more delighted than I was about Tupperware when I carried these Bible study guides to him for .50 each:

He had recently bought me two of these very kind of books for $8+ each!!

So... according to Tupperware's and Amazon's current prices, we would have paid $45 + $64 = $109. (!!!)

Instead, we found them at the thrift store for $2 + $4 = $6.

We saved $103 on a small stack of books and a veggie tray!


Even after all these years, I seriously still cannot understand how this is possible.

But you know what? I'll take it. :)

(For more crazy thrifting stories, here is a 31-day series I did on my favorite finds and thrifting tips!)

Monday, January 09, 2017

our weekend: a slow start, favorite Costco finds + a great idea


Without a three-day holiday our weekend seemed shorter, but I think we made it a bit longer by staying home out of the freezing temps! I got a treadmill run in on Saturday morning, and thankfully a PureFlix documentary helped the time pass more quickly. (It was extra fun to watch after reading A Chance to Die over Christmas!).

Sunday morning after church, we ate a quick snack and headed almost two hours away for a trip to Costco. We were all so hungry when we got there, but there weren't any seats (!) so we shopped for a while before eating. Costco cafe food is good, but I can now testify that it is at least 32x better when you're starving.

The kids had this fantastic idea to bring their walkie-talkies along for the trip. I think we should officially make it mandatory for large family trips in overcrowded stores. :D We had to separate a couple of times but found each other lightning fast! And they picked up a few random people talking while they were out on the road which made them just about keel over with excitement. :D

My main reason for the trip was to stock up on figs, but we definitely picked up a few more things while we were there (lots of cold food not pictured):

We made it back home around dinner time. With all the events of the day I was too tired to cook, so I made a salad for me, and a smorgasbord of Costco choices for everyone else:

Today, it's back to the regular grind: school, changing diapers, laundry and chores, working out, and planning the week:

Dinner tonight is super easy, thanks to my two kind friends who make black beans and rice while I do other stuff: :D

Luckily, in the middle of all this crazy/regular Monday, I get to eat lunch at the island with my best friend:

What a blessing it is... and a happy week already. :D

Friday, January 06, 2017

can I tell you something?

Can I tell you something I feel no one personally told me about following Jesus? (Maybe it's just me...?)

What is surprising me the most about this life is the in-between stages of becoming a different person with a new heart.

It's actually not very fun.

For a goal-driven, prideful, beauty-loving, success-seeking, love-to-make-myself-happy-most-of-all-American, the Lord knew from the beginning that I need a lot of emptying out of my sinful self.

But the emptying out, honestly, it feels really hard to not be able to do the things you used to love so much.

It feels...well...empty. And kind of sad. Like you lost a part of you. 

But only for a while. 

That painful, empty feeling is just the mid-point when you feel some desire for the old things of the flesh, but God is gently pulling your spirit to Himself and giving you a new heart. And you still want both the old and what He offers, but praise be to the Lord, you are somehow still walking away, leaving the old behind. 

It doesn't feel natural. It feels like a fight. It feels like saying goodbye to what you loved with every fiber of your being.

And it is. But the thing is- we have no idea how truly awful these worldly things are that we love so much. Or how very hideous they are to God. How they bring satisfaction to the flesh and seem so right to us but totally and completely deny the very Lord who bought us with a price. They are things that serve us, not God.

And then, when the Lord shows you that truth, your desire for those things starts to turn into horror that you could ever do them in the first place. And that's when it gets easier to leave them behind. When your mind is renewed by the Word of God, the Spirit helps your heart follow and obey it.

And the battle does get so much easier. But not until you see yourself, and your wretched sin (!), in light of the one true, holy, and perfect God.

If you're in the fight right now like me, let's pray for each other- that we would see things rightly. That we would see things truly. The way our Holy, Holy, Holy God sees them.

And that He would show us this in His Word- that it would give us eyes to see and ears to hear the truth, and a heart to do His will. And that He would give us the strength and ability to keep walking forward through His Spirit.

The best prize lies ahead of us, and is worth more than anything and everything we leave behind.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. 

Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. 

Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you. Only let us hold true to what we have attained.

Brothers, join in imitating me, and keep your eyes on those who walk according to the example you have in us. For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. 

But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.

Phillipians 3:12-21
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