Monday, November 30, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

(Don't forget to click on the picture above and visit Peggy's site!)

For today, November 30, 2009

Outside my window... another gray, cloudy Monday with the rain welcoming in a cold front. I'm so excited at the prospect of cooler weather! No, wait, there is sunshine! How beautiful!

I am thinking... about my to-do list and the best way to attack it.

I am thankful for... calendar-making smoothness! So many things can go – and have in the past gone – wrong with the process, and everything went so well this year!

From the learning rooms... not totally sure, I'm ashamed to say. We will focus today on getting back in the “groove” after taking most of the month off.

From the kitchen...Chicken fried rice and homemade egg rolls.

I am wearing... jeans, tennis shoes, and a purple sweatshirt! So excited it's cool enough for the sweatshirt today!

I am creating...Christmas gifts, still.

I am going... nowhere! How I love getting to just be at home!

I am reading... Treasured by Leigh McLeroy

I am remembering...friends who need prayer today.

On my mind...devotional thoughts for our ladies fellowship this weekend.

Noticing that...despite a few rough patches this morning, everyone seems mostly happy as we get back to routine.

I am hearing...Christmas music, Angela reading Christmas stories to Steven, the dryer running.

Around the house...tidiness. That makes me happy.

One of my favorite things...hearing my children play and read happily together.

A few plans for the rest of the week: Back to the full swing of school and normal routine, dessert night with some other minister's wives, ladies Christmas fellowship at church, more work on Christmas presents.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

First Christmas Pictures

Well, as I sorted through pictures yesterday I realized that Doug and I were really too busy participating in the Christmas decorating to get pictures of everyone in the process! I guess that's not a bad thing though, is it? We had a great time, and somehow managed to avoid the typical insane chaos that usually accompanies pulling out the Christmas decorations. That was nice. I will confess, we did go through our Christmas stuff just as we have everything else in the house.

We did realize something. We collect nativities, but I think we're about to run out of room! So, as much as I love seeking out unique new nativities, there will be no new ones, at least for a few years!

Here are a couple of pictures I did get during the decorating...organizing tree parts for assembly...
...and decorating the tree. They did a really good job, too! Olivia can now reach pretty high, so the dispersement is improving!One of my favorite things is getting Christmas pictures. I'm sure there will be many more over the course of the month, but today the kids sweetly put on their Christmas outfits and posed for the first of the pictures. We did have to bribe Steven, but then he was pretty compliant for an opinionated three-year-old! Here are just a few of the pictures we took today.

First the casual...
Then the dressy...

Saturday, November 28, 2009


Okay, so I changed my mind. No Christmas decorating post today. Thanksgiving comes first, right? So, here are a few pictures of our Thanksgiving fun.

Pumpkin bread! We found a scrumptious recipe online, and I put it in my pumpkin pan. I don't know how clearly it shows up, but there is a fence surrounding a crop of pumpkins. Isn't it cute?
On the day before Thanksgiving, the girls were such wonderful helpers as we worked to make sure the house was clean so we could get up and decorate first thing on Friday. Before bedtime Wed night, we made the kids' Thanksgiving hats. Olivia and Steven wanted to be Indians, and Angela a pilgrim.
Thursday morning, they were all ready to don their hats and head to Monroe!
Olivia loved getting to help Grandma work in the kitchen - like making breadcrumbs!
The girls enjoyed getting to play with cousin Morgan.
And after dinner, we had three great helpers on the kitchen clean-up crew!There are so many things to be thankful for. The girls made Thanksgiving turkeys this week, listing some of the things they were thankful for, and reading their lists just melted my heart. God has been dealing with me in recent months, reminding me to be more thankful and joyful in all things. This season is such a good reminder for that. I pray that all of you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are blessed as we roll into the Christmas season!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Remaining House Pictures

It's taken me a while, but I finally have the rest of the house pictures ready to post! I don't have a picture of the outside yet - I'll get to that next week!

Here's the family room from the kitchen...
...and from the hallway toward the kitchen.
Our bedroom.
The utility room.
The dining room/school room (there are a few more bookshelves to the right of the heart wall-hanging).

And here is the library/sewing room, looking into the dining room.
We are delighted to say that every box (with the exception of household decor that currently would be packed away anyway thanks to Christmas decorations) is unpacked! YAY! We still need to do some organization in the laundry room and in the tool shed off the carport, but otherwise, everything has a place. I'm also excited that, so far, the tidiness you've seen in the pictures is being mostly maintained. Even as we were unpacking, the only clutter was unpacking clutter - if it had a spot, it stayed in it for the most part! The battle is coming, I know, as we get back into the normal school routine. But, it's so much easier when we start off with it clean!

Today we put out our Christmas decorations...a few pictures of that will come tomorrow, hopefully!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

(Don't forget to click on the picture above and visit Peggy's site!)

For today, November 23, 2009
Outside my window...a gray, cloudy day.

I am thinking...about what needs to be done this week.

I am thankful for...our new house, happy children, an amazing husband, having so much that we can freely give away and still have plenty, and so much more!

But, most of all, my Lord and Savior and the fact that He is intimate and personal with me.

From the learning rooms...nothing! As has been the case practically all month! Back to school next Monday. Meanwhile, there will be some Thanksgiving crafts this week, I'm sure.

From the kitchen...beef stroganoff over egg noodles with a yet-to-be-determined veggie.

I am wearing...jeans, a pullover green knit top, and brown clogs.

I am creating...Christmas gifts! So excited to get back to that today!

I am return what we just bought for Doug for Christmas from the kids – found a better one on Amazon. But, the kids got to physically go pick it out, so that was worth the trip.

I am reading...Just finished Beyond Me(look for a review to come soon!). About to start a couple of Christmas books for review.

I am hoping...that all my Christmas crafts go very smoothly since I have less time than originally planned.

I am hearing...happy children playing. Christmas music (yes, I know, but I just can't help it!)

Around the house...everything is unpacked and clean!

One of my favorite things...this time of year.

A few plans for the rest of the week: steady progress on Christmas gifts, Thanksgiving crafts, Thanksgiving Day in Monroe, preparation for getting back to school next week.

A picture worth sharing...our garlic sprouted in its container in the pantry! So, we planted it, and are looking forward to a garlic crop next summer.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Normal Abnormalcy and House Pictures

Ah, routine! How we miss it when we don't have it! Today is the day, though. We have started the day with the intention of running our regular routine and finishing any needed organization in the gaps of said routine.

The house is mostly done, with a few exceptions. We haven't really done much in the way of decor because it's so close to Christmas. We have our fall stuff out, and we'll be working on wall hangings soon. But, we're mainly just waiting to put up Christmas decorations and then we'll do the everyday decor after Christmas.

Meanwhile, there are no window shades, so curtains are a pretty urgent need. Our bedroom required the least adjustment, so I was able to get to the sewing machine enough to do those and get them hung Saturday night. I hope to get the kids' curtains adjusted/expanded and hung early this week.

We're also still working on organizing the computer desk and the sewing/library/school organization room (technically the living room, although it won't look anything like a living room!). That's one of those chores that just gets pushed to the bottom of the list! We do have everything accessible to get back to school in full force today. It warmed my heart when Angie let out a big "YAY!" about getting back to school!

Here are the first of the pictures of our new house, which we truly love, by the way!

The kitchen looking in from the family room...
...and looking straight on from the dining room. It's awesomely huge!! The door you see to the left is to the laundry room. I don't have a picture yet, but it's huge, too!
We have four bedrooms. We mulled over the fourth room. The girls have bunkbeds and like sharing a room, so we decided not to split them up. We thought about a lot of ideas, but came to the conclusion that it would be a study/toy storage.
We can see the sunrise beautifully through these windows, so it's an awesome place for morning Bible reading and prayer.
Here's Steven's room...we separated his bunk beds, and we all like the setup a lot.
Here's the girls' room. The closet you see in the second picture is actually the smallest of the bedroom closets - and there's really a lot more depth to this one than the picture shows. I was a bit concerned about giving up all of the incredible closet space at the old house (the only thing I was going to miss about that house!), but this house has great closet space as well, and it's actually better organized and distributed than what we've had.

This is the back bathroom. There is no master bath, so to speak, but this one is right across the hall from our room. So, it's technically our bathroom. I didn't post a picture, but to the right there are two small linen closets separated by a nice vanity area.
This is the kids' bathroom. There is a small linen closet behind the door, making a total of three linen closets. That has made organization a breeze because the sizes are perfect!

Coming soon...laundry room, master bedroom, family room, dining room, and library/sewing room.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

A Few Pictures

These are some pictures from last week before the move.

Here are the kids escaping the chaos with a movie. We've watched a few more than usual over the past week..a couple every day instead of one or two a week. Some things just have to be done for sanity's sake.
Camping out on the mattresses Friday night...

The trailer Doug crammed full of most of our boxes...his time at UPS was good for something! :-)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Moving Fun

Our internet is now up and running. Yay! Apparently it was a pretty big problem that went further than just the connection to our house. But, it's working beautifully now.

As for the house...well, it's slowly coming along. But, we're much further along than we would have been without all the help we had on Saturday!

When Doug came over here first thing Saturday morning, it was still doubtful as to how much we could move. The hallway was still a wet pool of polyurethane. He came back over with a fan and space heater, though, determined to get it as dry as he could.

Meanwhile, we knew we had one person from church coming to help. We also knew we had a place to send the kids for the day. I figured I'd send the kids to Mrs. Joy for the morning while we got the big furniture moved, and then I'd go get them and we'd see where we were going to go from there. But, that's not how it turned out.

We ended up with not just one but four men from church, each with a truck, to help with the move. I almost couldn't keep up with them!! By mid-afternoon, they not only had almost everything out of the old house and brought over here, but they also had each piece of furniture in its appropriate place, beds set up, many of the boxes in their appropriate rooms, and the church trailer Doug had packed tight on Thursday totally unloaded! Mrs. Joy kept the kids until after 4:00 so we could get as much done as possible, and much did get done.

So far I have the kids' rooms mostly done, but most of my time and energy has been poured into the kitchen. It needed a lot of work before I could even begin unpacking the boxes - much scrubbing, pulling out old liner, and putting in new. I'm not one who has to have lined cabinets, but these desperately needed it! I think I finally have the kitchen mostly done at this point, so I'm ready to move on to the rest of the house.

As for the house, well, it's huge! The number I've heard is 2800 square feet. I told Doug that it seems the more we commit to paring down our stuff and junk, the bigger our houses get! I'll take it - and I'll keep getting rid of stuff, too. We never know what the Lord's making room for in our home and family.

I'll have more pictures soon, but just to give you an idea of the size, here's the view from the kitchen door through the family room all the way down the hall.
And here's just the hall. Four bedrooms, two bathrooms, living room, family room, dining room, kitchen, large laundry room, and large storage room off the carport. We like it!