Wednesday, December 29, 2010

This is Crazy!!

Ok raise your hand if you love you a whopper??Or a double bacon cheese burger??!! Well guess what, you are NOT eating what you thought you were eating!

I have been trying to learn more about food,healthy eating,etc.I’ve been learning about all the different things that are done to our food that can make it unhealthy.I am learning that natural and homemade are best. These idea’s were just confirmed by an article I read entitles “The truth about your weight gain” written by David Zinczenko. Here is just part of what he had to say:

“Most fast-food hamburger patties begin their voyage to your buns in the hands of a company called Beef Products. The company specializes in taking slaughterhouse trimmings—heads and hooves and the like—that are traditionally used only in pet food and cooking oil, and turning them into patties. The challenge is getting this byproduct meat clean enough for human consumption, as both E. coli and salmonella like to concentrate themselves in the fatty deposits.
The company has developed a process for killing beef-based pathogens by forcing the ground meat through pipes and exposing it to ammonia gas—the same chemical you might use to clean your bathroom. Not only has the USDA approved the process, but it's also allowed those who sell the beef to keep it hidden from their customers. At Beef Products’ behest, ammonia gas has been deemed a “processing agent” that need not be identified on nutrition labels. Never mind that if ammonia gets on your skin, it can cause severe burning, and if it gets in your eyes, it can blind you. Add to the gross-out factor the fact that after moving through this lengthy industrial process, a single beef patty can consist of cobbled-together pieces from different cows from all over the world—a practice that only increases the odds of contamination.”

I think its amazing that we can treat our food with ammonia gas(among other really scary chemicals) and then wonder why we as a country are fat and riddled with serious diseases such as cancer and diabetes.

The thought of dropping everything and buying all organic,non processed foods and cooking and baking everything from scratch is VERY appealing when I read articles like the one listed above.But because of time,cost,etc that just isn't realistic for me.Or for many other people either.BUT that doesn't mean we cant change SOME of our eating habits.It is realistic for me to say “No more fast food”. It is realistic to say “I’ll buy some organic foods”.The way I look at it any small change can help.

A Favorite In Our House



With a husband and four kids in my house meals can be difficult. All said we have six people with different likes, dislikes and preferences. One dinner recipe I have found that I absolutely LOVE is Chicken noodles over mashed potatoes. Every single person in my family will eat this meal!Now that's saying something!I thought I would share!

Chicken Noodles Over Mashed Potatoes

2-4 chicken breast(some like more chicken some like less)

1 package egg noodles

Chicken broth (enough to half fill large soup pot)


cook and mash potatoes enough for your family.

While the potatoes cook  boil chicken breast. Drain chicken and shred in large bowl.

In large pot cook egg noodles according to package directions  in chicken broth.For added chicken flavor add 1-2 chicken bullion cubes.

When noodles are close to done add in the shredded chicken breast, add salt and pepper to taste,Finish cooking.

When the noodles are finished spoon  over mashed potatoes.

This is a simple dish that can be made with several variations. Add veggies like pictured above,use chicken thighs and other pieces, eat in a bowl without mashed potatoes or over biscuits. All in all an easy to make dish that is sure to please lots of palates :0)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

From Greece to Rome

Today has been an exciting homeschool day! I love those days when everything seems to go right :0) I like to blog about them so that on those days where nothing seems to go right I can look back and remember hahaha!

Today Hannah (our preschooler) and I sat down with her new Melissa & Doug Alphabet puzzle book to work on the letters and their sounds.To my great thrill Hannah knows a lot of the sounds.A lot more than I realized she knows :0) and that's ALWAYS exciting for a homeschool momma.

Isaiah worked on his multiplication on mathletics(a wonderful online math program) and his cursive writing.The cursive is coming really easily for Isaiah and I am glad we waited till now to start it.

Justin also did some great work in math today.It was a review day not a new lesson day.I gave him number cards through 20 to put in order. Up till now the teens have been a big grey area for him.Mostly guess work as to where each went. Today he got all but two of them in order on his own.

Its very exciting  to see my children grow and learn and accomplish their work. Being a part of it all is the best thing too. I love introducing new ideas and concepts to them and working with them on each.

Today was also the end of our Ancient Greece unit study.In the morning we sat down and put together their books they have been working on.It was a great way to review all we have done the past 8 weeks. In the afternoon we help our Olympic games! There was a wide range of events from chariot races(on scooters) to the long jump and princess twirling competition!Here is a picture of the proud Olympians!


It was such a fun way to end the unit.I will spend the rest of this week getting the final plans set and then we are off to Ancient Rome :0)

Monday, December 27, 2010

Small and Simple Things Week 3 Oh My!

Oh my goodness this past week was GREAT! We played,cooked,ate,celebrated,relaxed and in general had a wonderful holiday week.Christmas was beautiful.What this means for my challenge goals though are not so wonderful LoL! I basically took a week off! Not going to stress over the past though and going to just move on to this week.

Goal 1: Is to get back on schedule! My husband was off work all last week.That meant I stayed up later at night.Slept in longer in the morning and had no general schedule going at all. I find when I am on a schedule I do better. If I go to bed on time then I have more energy to get up and exercise.

Goal 2: Is to figure out something that will work for my eating habits!This has been such a struggle for me. I love to eat and unfortunately I love to eat things that are not great for me! I think my best bet will be to plan ahead.At the start of the day if I plan my lunch, dinner and snacks then hopefully I wont grab whatever is fastest come 1 o'clock when all the kids are crying for their lunches!I’ll be prepared!

To check out more about the Small and Simple things challenge ckick the link below:

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!!!

I am really loving this holiday season! Christmas is my all time favorite holiday.

I am so grateful for  the birth of my Savior Jesus Christ. Because of his birth,life and redeeming sacrifice I can have life eternal with my beloved family and Heavenly Father and I am so thankful.

I am so thrilled to pieces that this year my  husband is home with us celebrating instead of in Iraq like last year.

I have four adorable,sweet and healthy children.I know I am so lucky to have what I have and I am so grateful.

I hope you are all having a wonderful Christmas.Be thankful for what you have and turn your troubles over to God!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Small and Simple Things Challenge

I just really love blogging! Reading others blogs uplifts me,encourages me and at times challenges me. The blog that has been encouraging me and challenging me the most lately is Tristans blog  “Our Busy Homeschool”. She has started a challenge all about getting healthier and taking better care of the bodies God gave us one small step at a time. Check it out HERE.

This is the start of week two of the challenge. Week one goals for myself were to 1.Exercise five days a week and 2. Make healthier food choices. On the positive side I did get in more exercise than usual.The down side is I didn't get in 5 days. My second goal was a total bust! I find food is my biggest struggle. But I am not discouraged. I am going to keep working at these goals till I achieve them!

For this week 5 days is still my exercise goal.My husband is on Christmas Vacation and I have enlisted his help in achieving this goal. I am also going to try again on healthier eating. I know its Christmas week and there will be lots of treats made.So my specific eating goal for the week is to eat healthy meals and allow myself the treats afterward.

I’d encourage anyone who would like to join in to go right ahead. No matter how simple or how small the goal, it is still a worthy one!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

I REALLY don’t like the mall

We tend to be homebodies.Not going out too many places.The grocery store,friends houses,the aquarium places like that are all fine with me. The one place however that I just can’t stand is the MALL!

I went last night to get my hair cut.The salon I go to happens to be in the mall.It had been a good while since I had last been there and I really didn't think much of it. Until I got there that is! Ladies strutting around in stilettos and   pants so tight they look painted on.Guys with the waist band of there pants belted BELOW there rear ends.Stores full of three hundred dollar purses and any other ridiculously expensive thing you could want. This description aside the thing that happened really surprised me.I started to feel envious!

Generally I feel just fine about who I am and what I have. I am very laid back and tend to wear jeans/jean skirts a lot.With any number of t-shirts. The  cute high heels that used to grace my terribly cute feet were traded for not so terribly cute flats about two children ago and my purse cost about fifteen bucks at Target. These are all facts about myself I hardly ever think about.UNTIL I walk into the mall.I look at my brown cabalas' t shirt and tennis shoes next to the pretty blonde in a pencil skirt and heels and I feel like a shlumpy old housewife.  I begin to drool over the shiny purses and the hundred dollar makeup that promises to make me look like a super model. Reality hits and I realize that I not only don't look like these women but I honestly couldn't afford to either! What a depressing place to let myself be! Earlier this very day I felt perfectly content with the clothes,accessories and life I had.So how did this one short trip into the mall make me feel so negative?

I leave the mall and come home to my adorable kids,loving husband and comfortable home and immediately all of those negative feelings and worldy desires are gone. But I am left to sit and wonder why the feeling of discontent had come upon me at all? I would like to think I am past such things. Besides I know what is really important and I am truly happy beyond belief with my life. I suppose we all at times have that weakness in us.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Lessons Learned From The Classics


Is it just me or are the books today in general a bunch of junk?Don’t get me wrong I enjoy some brain candy!I like to read a book just for fun! I have several Christian romance novels that I love to snuggle up with on a cold day. These fun reads and good books are no were near as uplifting though as some of the classics I have been reading! It seems to me that in the past you got so many more lessons and so much more morals and values in your books.

I started reading The Swiss Family Robinson to my kids a few weeks ago and was SHOCKED and pleased to read the Mothers assurance of God watchfulness and the family praying together in the first couple pages. If that kind of thing is in a book now adays it has to be labeled a religious book and put in a special section!Throughout Swiss Family the parents teach their children about faith,hard work and avoiding laziness.Boy we could use more books like this today!

I just yesterday started reading Little Women and it is chock full of the same types of  lessons! A particular favorite part of mine is Jo weeping to her mother about her horrible temper. This is the advice that Marmee gives Jo

Watch and pray,dear,never get tired of trying,and never think it is impossible to conquer your fault.”

You don't here the child justifying her fault.You don’t read Marmee excusing her daughters sin either.She lovingly encourages her daughter to over come her worse nature.  We need more of this in our books today. I am now on the hunt for more books classics or other with such good lessons for me and my kids.

Monday, December 6, 2010

This may be a touch subject But yeah I’m going there

This may seem like its coming out of left field and that's ok.Its just been on my mind a lot lately. Its a going to be a pretty personal post so feel free to skip reading it if you like.

I love that Heavenly Father answers our prayers. I love that I can pray through my feelings and get to a place that I can happily follow my husband and the Lords will.

Does anyone else ever feel like what is best for others is best for them? How about feeling like having more kids makes you better or more righteous than the family that chose to only have 2?Well I have been there and had those feelings before.Hey, we are all sinful and prideful at times.

You see we have four children.Two boys and two girls.They are really awesome and for the most part(you know there are those off days) I love being their mom. My hubby and I will never have anymore kids.By our own choosing.I will be honest and tell you I have felt the need around some other Christians to justify this very personal decision.

I totally know that children are a wonderful blessing from God. I wanted more children after we had our fourth little girl.As always my husband and I put the matter to prayer.We have always felt like God would help us decide if and when to have another child.I’ll be darned if my husband wasn't adamant that we were done having children.

I patiently(at first) prayed that God would inform my husband that we were to have more children.Then I prayed a bit more “fervently” that my husband would have a change of heart. I was sure that God would change my husbands will to mine. I say “mine” because I realize  now that I wasn't really consulting God in this.God wants everyone to have at least  eight kids right?!That's how I felt anyhow!

I continued to pray this way clear up to the week before my husbands scheduled surgery(if the fact that my hubby had a vasectomy is TMI then you probably should stop reading) but one day it all changed. I sat down at the computer to look at a friends blog.She had posted about her littlest child turning 1 and wondering about the next to come.  I lost it! I mean LOST it! Sobbing and crying I ran right for my Bible and sat on the couch. I started to pray.Crying out to Heavenly Father over my desires to have more children and my fear that my husband would not see things my way and FINALLY asking God whether it was HIS will for us to have more.Up to that point I was SURE that it was. I gradually began to just feel a calm warmth flow through me and I was able to stop crying.I wiped my eyes and started to read.

Every scripture I read,every single one I turned to spoke of training,teaching and raising our children. It was like Heavenly Father was telling me not to worry about having more children but to focus on raising the ones He had blessed me with. Has anyone else ever had one of those moment where you realize that you know nothing and that God is the author of our lives?

Since then my sister has had a sweet new baby,a dear friend has been blessed with a twin pregnancy,my sister in law has found out she is having her first baby and my littlest has turned 1. Through it all I have had a twinge or two of jealousy. But mostly I have felt peace and happiness because I know that through prayer God was able to tell us what was right for us.It feels good to be following Gods path for us.

I hope to remember what I learned from this experience always.That if we pray and sincerely ask for Gods will to come about in our heart He will guide us AND give us joy in the path He sets us on.