Thursday, March 31, 2011

Winners of Orphaned NO More Bracelet Giveaway

We have our winners!

1.  Lesli who said...

I like spring has sprung!

2.  The Knapps who said....

I like the Garden Medley

3.  AMY  who said...

I like the Love and Faithfulness Bracelet best.

The winners have been notified.  Congratulations to them and thanks to all the rest of you fabulous friends who entered the giveaway! 

I love Giveaways!

I won a giveaway from My Four Monkeys and it came yesterday!  Lately, I've been entering a lot of these giveaways and it is paying off.  I have been on a winning streak!  You can too!  Check out my Giveaway Links tab and go enter some giveaways! 

 A $10 Target gift card, a frisbee and 5 boxes Retro General Mills cereal!

See the boxes, these are the boxes I remember from my youth.  My family loves cereal and this will keep us in stock for the next couple of weeks! Thanks My Four Monkeys!  Simon really enjoyed all the packing that came in the box too! 

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Being a Parent: It Can Be Overwhelming --Part One

I've been doing some learning lately.  I wanted to work my lessons and thoughts out here.  I hope you understand that I don't wish to offend anyone so please don't offend me with any ugly comments.  This is my own personal space to write out my thoughts and feelings.  If you don't share in my beliefs and they offend you, then just don't come read my blog anymore.  But I hope you will because I really want to share how awesome my lilfe is with God in it.  Or rather how awesome my life is when I am in God.  Anyway, just going to be thinking out loud here.  I'd love for you to think out loud with me. 

Do you ever get overwhelmed at the immense responsibility you have as a parent?  I do.  To be responsible for my child's physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health is stressful.  And I think you can multiply that stress by the number of kids you have.  And if you don't have a support system, if you are doing the parent thing solo, then I think you can quadruple that stress amount!  Bottom line.  It's stressful for all of us.  But what you do with that stress is what matters.

I really think some of our stress has a lot to do with our expectations.  Our unrealistic expectations. There are so many voices out there, and they are all screaming for our attention.  It's great to get others opinions, to get tips from those who have gone before us.  However, they may not work for you.  I used to go into a situation with an opinion or two in one hand and several tips in the other.  If none of them worked for me, well I felt like I failed. I had tried, why didn't it work?  Well, I have learned that just like everyone is different; there are different solutions to the same problem.  Like many math problems, you can get to the same answer by a multitude of different ways.

Always, make sure the opinions and tips you are getting line up with God's word, the Bible.  "Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you. Accept instruction from his mouth and lay up his words in your heart." Job 22:21-22

How about your parents (the grandparents)?  What role do they play in your expectations?  Do you feel that there are expectations that they have for you and your parenting skills that you just can't live up to?  Are they real expectations or imaginary ones?  I am the queen of imaginary conversations.  I have this whole conversation between me and whoever, in my head, and then I get myself all worked up with real emotions, over a very unreal conversation.  Then my real relationship is filtered through the fake reality.  That's not good.  I know this and I have been working on it.  I've come a loooooonnngg way.

I have learned that communication is key when it comes to this. My parents are not the same people they were 31 years ago.  They have changed and developed as people, just as I have.  So my past experiences with them are just that.  Past.  I shouldn't get worked up trying to meet an expectation that has carried over from my childhood.  For example, maybe your Mom stayed home with you until you went to Kindergarten.  However, you work and your children go to daycare/preschool because your household needs two incomes.  Should you assume that your Mom expects that you should be staying at home with your kids too?  No.  Just ask. 

We have also been fed the ideas, "You can be whatever you want to be.", "You can do whatever you want to do." and "You can have it all."  All that stuff, feeds our stress. You can not be whatever you want to be, you can not do whatever you want and you can not have it all.  Now before you start getting really mad at me, please keep reading so I can explain.

You can not be whatever you want because you need to be whatever God wants.  If you aren't in line with Him and what he wants you to be then there won't be the fulfillment of "being".  You will strive and strive to be what you want and never reach it.  Proverbs 19:21 "Many are the plans in a person's heart, but it is the Lords purpose that prevails."

You can not do whatever you want because God wants you to do what He asks.  It's selfish and self-serving and no one is truly happy when they are just thinking about themselves.  Look at Jonah.  He didn't want to go to Nineveh even though God asked him to.  He did what he wanted and tried to run as far away from Nineveh as he could go.  Did it work?  No.  Was Jonah happy while he was doing what he wanted?  I really don't think so.  I mean not unless he really always wanted to be eaten by a big fish.

You can not have it all.  You can have many God given blessings.  Things that God has promised his believers and followers.  But if you are looking to have all that the world gives and all that God gives.  You can't.  Matthew 6:24 says it well, "No one can serve two masters.  Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other.  You can not serve both God and money."

So what can we do to help alleviate some of the stress that comes with being a parent?

We need to constantly reevaluate our expectations. Our expectations for ourselves as parents and for our family as a whole.

Are they realistic within the boundaries of Gods word?  Because if they are, then those expectations should be freeing and not stressful.

"Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.  They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.  I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”  Lamentations 2:22-24

Monday, March 28, 2011

Spring Snow

This weather is crazy!  It was so nice at the beginning of last week and now at the beginning of this week it snows all morning!  I know that there are places where people are tramping through the snow and it's well below freezing.  I'm not complaining, I just don't like being teased.  I also hope it didn't kill off all the beautiful daffodils that have been cropping up everywhere.  Oh well, I guess it just gives me a little more time to do my pedicure before I can put on my flip flops! 

Sunday, March 27, 2011

I've Been Featured at Tatertots and Jello

I was featured in a Great Ideas--Easter post at Tatertots and Jello.  Not once but TWICE! Oh my, I am so excited!  She featured:

 Jelly Bean Packets

Jelly Bean Sugar Cookies

Thanks Tatertots and Jello!!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Recipe of the Week - Jelly Bean Sugar Cookies

Jelly Beans are yummy! As a kid, I used to love picking through the beans to pull out my favorite colors.  I always liked the purple, pink and red ones.   I did notice that there were no black or white jelly beans in the bags of beans I bought. Maybe there are in some of the different brands.  I don't like them anyway, but have they stopped making them?

I wanted to make some fun desserts with these colorful beans and so here is one that I came up with! After I made these I looked online to see if there were more recipes for Jelly Bean cookies, and there are!  I will put the links up at the bottom of the post.

For these cookies you will need:
A good sugar cookie recipe or a good sugar cookie mix (I recommend Betty Crocker's).
Jelly Beans (about 1 cup)

First I cut up some jelly beans.  I tried to chop them with my food chopper but that didn't work.  I found that using a knife was the best method.  

Aren't they pretty?  I love all the colors and it smelled so good.  Jelly Bean potpourri...

Make your sugar cookie dough.  I just used a sugar cookie mix from Betty Crocker.  LOVE, her sugar cookies!  I made the cookies according to the package directions and then dumped in some of my cut up beans.  Stir and then bake as directed.

Ta-dah!  Yummy Jelly Bean Sugar cookies!

You want to go make some now, don'tcha?

Here's those links I promised ya!

Lemon and Orange Jelly Bean Cookies

Extreme Oatmeal and Jelly Bean Cookies

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

Funky Junk's Sat Nite Special


The Girl Creative

Keeping It Simple

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Winner of Huggies Pull Ups Prize Pack

 The Huggies Pull Ups Prize Pack winner was selected via a random number generator and the number is 25!

AMY said...

networked blogs follower 2 Amy Witherstine awitherstine at gmail dot com

Congrats to Amy!  I  have sent her an email and she will have 48 hours to contact me. 
Thanks to all who entered!

Jelly Bean Packets Tutorial and Giveaway

 Here is a great way to spread a little Easter candy love! 
I'm calling them Jelly Bean Packets but I don't really like that name.  
Got any suggestions for me?

These would be great for your kids to give to their classmates or for favors at an Easter themed party.  You can win a dozen of them.  Giveaway instructions are at the bottom of the post.

And now, here's a tutorial just for you!

tissue Paper (any color you like)
pen or pencil
an egg shape to trace
Jelly Beans
hot glue gun, fully loaded

 Fold your tissue paper in half so you only have to trace and cut once for each egg.  Trace your egg shape onto your tissue paper.  I used a cookie cutter but I am sure that there are some patterns online.

 Then cut out where you traced and you will have two eggs.

Bead a line of hot glue around the edge of one of the eggs.

Line up the other egg on top and press into the glue to seal.

Glue around the other side, making sure to leave a jelly bean-sized opening.  Then put your beans in.  I could only fit 5 jelly beans in each egg.  Of course you will be able to fit more if your egg pattern is bigger.

There you go.  Jelly Bean Packets.  
Nope, still don't like the name.  Somebody help me out!

How would you like to win a dozen tissue paper Easter eggs filled with Jelly Beans? 
I'll give away one of my readers a dozen of these treats!

Please leave your email address with each comment/entry!

Mandatory entry(1):

Leave me a comment telling me what your favorite Easter candy is.

Extra entries (1 for each):

Follow me on Google Friend Connect (GFC) and leave me a comment telling me you did so.

Follow me on Networked Blogs and leave me a comment telling me you did so.

Enter another one of my giveaways and leave me a comment telling me you did so.

Think of a name to call these (other than Jelly Bean Packets) and leave me a comment.

Check out my T-shirt Redo post and leave me a comment.

This giveaway is open to US residents and will end on 4/8/2011 at 5pm EST.

Chic on a Shoestring Decorating

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The Girl Creative

Keeping It Simple

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