Random Thoughts/Information/"Sunday" Recap

Hi I have some random thoughts today that I just think you are dying to know (haha)! Here it goes:

1) I am REALLY excited about my first ever give away starting this Saturday Dec. 1- I have some good items..My favorite things! 
2) I just need to tell you one of my issues of this season- it is a STRONG dislike of mine when people write XMas- Christmas is the celebration of CHRIST's birth- deliberately taking the word Christ out is not honoring to him..I am just going to say that. I just really take issue with it- so there you go! Merry Christmas! :)
3) I am gearing up for Milly's first birthday on Friday- I cannot believe she is One- holy smokes! 
4) Is anyone else bummed by the "Black Friday" and "Ciber Monday" deals? I was all pumped up and ready to get my Christmas shopping (and I shop for the girls birthdays too) done- and there were no good deals- I am sorry but 20% is not a smokin' deal when we know it will be 60% off on December 26th! 
5) Since I didn't do a Sunday Recap this week, here is a little recap from last week for you! Thank you for letting me get all of that off my chest! :) 

{Here is my little cooking assistant for Thanksgiving- she helped me knead the dough for Grandma B's homemade noodles- they were so yummy!}

{My mom sets a mean table- I like the cooking, she likes the decorating so it is a good team!}

{Our little family on Thanksgiving!}

{The chix on Thanksgiving!}

{Pops on Thanksgiving- they love him!}

{Family football on Thanksgiving- the kids LOVED it. The weather was amazing the week of Thanksgiving- Praise God!}

{The football action}

{We left for a little trip to my home town the day after Thanksgiving and after I loaded the girls in the car I went back in and guess who came riding back to town? Eddy! They love looking for this little guy every day! Dave's coworker wrote the "Eddy note" this year- they went nuts!} 

{be still my heart...love this little one-year-old! This growing up thing is happening WAY TOO FAST!}

{I tried to get some pics at the cabin- Milly was so pumped to be standing with the sisters!}

{It didn't last too long!}

{Our little fam at the cabin!}

{We got to hang with our buddies in my home town (their mom is my oldest (not age... years!) friend)- I have never met anyone who "desires the fancy" more than Izz...Except Mia (on the end) she and Izz are fancy ladies!}

{We got to see Grandma- if anyone can get Milly to want to eat..I figured she could! My girls ADORE her! (yes, we use the Bumbo, no I am not afraid she will get hurt, Please do not send hate mail, we love that thing!}

{This is a must- the girls make my grandmother push them around on her walker- she is a trooper!}

{This sums up the long weekend- we got in the car to drive home and this happened in 4 seconds- she was exhausted!!!}


FaLaLaLaLa- Christmas Music!

I have completely switched over to my Christmas playlist- it is so much fun to have Christmas music playing throughout the day! If you missed my favorite worship songs, HERE they are.

This is a list of my favorite Christmas Albums/Songs
- Dara Maclean: Bethlehem Skies (she might be my new favorite! I LOVE "Home"...well, I love them all!)
- Folk Angel: Comfort and Joy (Christmas Songs Volume 3)

Do you ever have the "God bump" moment? It is goose bumps but completely caused by the Holy Spirit on you- when you hear something God has done or something that is unexplainable other than through Jesus Christ- you get goose bumps..or God Bumps! Anyway- I LOVE those times! This song (which is on the Folk angel album) is by Isaac Wimberley- there is a point in the middle of this song where the God bumps are just all over me- you have the listen to the WHOLE thing! Talk about setting the scene for Christmas! Thankful doesn't seem to be a big enough word for how I feel about what Christ did and does for me! HERE is the link in case you cant see the video on here. 

Let me know what your favorites are!


Recipe Monday: The Best Dip Ever!

My friend Lisa brought this to our house on Halloween...and I have been thinking about it ever since! It is so yummy- if you like Buffalo wings you will LOVE this!

Here is the LINK


8 oz. pkg. cream cheese, softened 
1/2 cup blue cheese or ranch salad dressing 
1/2 cup FRANK'S(R) REDHOT(R) Original Cayenne Pepper Sauce or FRANK'S(R) REDHOT(R) Buffalo Wing Sauce
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese or shredded mozzarella cheese 
2 cans (12.5 oz. each) SWANSON(R) White Premium Chunk Chicken Breast in Water, drained

HEAT oven to 350°F. Place cream cheese into deep baking dish. Stir until smooth. 
MIX in salad dressing, Frank's RedHot Sauce and cheese. Stir in chicken. 
BAKE 20 min. or until mixture is heated through; stir. Garnish as desired. Serve with crackers or vegetables. 

Reduced Calorie Recipe: Substitute neufchatel cheese for the cream cheese, and low fat options for the salad dressing and blue cheese.
Microwave Directions: Prepare as above. Place in microwave-safe dish. Microwave, uncovered, on HIGH 5 min. until hot, stirring halfway through cooking. 
Slow Cooker Method: Combine ingredients as directed above. Place mixture into small slow cooker. Cover pot. Heat on HIGH setting for 1 1/2 hours until hot and bubbly or on LOW setting for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Stir.
Tailgating Tip: Prepare dip ahead and place in heavy disposable foil pan. Place pan on grill and heat dip until hot and bubbly.
Tip: You may substitute 2 cups shredded cooked chicken. 


Courtesy of Frank's(R) RedHot(R) 


Sunday Recap

Hello! What a crazy and fun time of year! Before I do my little "recap" I need to tell you- if you are waiting for a response on a sleeping issue- hang in there with me- I am going to take a chunk of time Monday or Tuesday and catch up on those messages! Sorry I am so behind! OK...here is the recap..Have I mentioned how I excited I am for the holidays?!

{This week my mom "cici" took my girls and my niece to shop for Christmas dresses. It is a precious tradition- they go to Von Maur- which has a huge pink "stage" with a 3-way mirror and beautiful dresses. The girls get to pick out any dress they want to try on and they twirl and spin in every one of them! Then, they get to choose their one special dress. It is an amazing blessing that she does this- they LOVE it and LOVE her!} 

{the #1 criteria...THE SPIN!}

{fully checking herself out!}

 {Even Milly got to go!}

{Ellie had an ear infection, she was a trooper! She loved her dress. Our amazing friend Miss Teresa gave the girls these darling headbands with their names on them...they have been wearing them EVERY DAY- they love them!}

{This is a little shot from our home away from home...the doctor's office- we have been in the doctors office every week for the past 6 weeks...we got to go twice this week! It is just silly- they pass everything around and bring it home from school- I think they are currently taking 9 vitamins every morning trying to ward it off. SO tired of sickness!}

{On a happy note- we got to have dinner with our friends on Friday-- we went to a delightful restaurant called Gram & Dun- if you are in the KC area- it is a must go!}

{Me and my man at dinner! That cocktail in the pic was so yummy, it has rosemary in it- YUMMMMM!}

{Mom and Dad took all 6 kids to IHOP on Saturday- they had a blast! Here is dad with Milly and Rivington (my niece)}

{Mom and Dad with all 6- create your own pancakes...amazing!}

{Have you seen this gadget? We found it at the store and thought.. "we need to try this!" It doesn't plug in or anything- it is rubber and you just slip your IPhone in the hole and it makes the volume SO much louder- we can listen to music from my phone in my car- it is LOUD..I am not kidding, it works! It definitely works better on the IPhone than the IPOD for some reason. (I saw them at Walgreens if you need one too!)}

{Finally...we decorated for Christmas this weekend- I couldn't help myself! My mom came to help me because I was at a loss for where to put everything :) It is so festive and fun, I love it! The Christmas music playlist is in full effect, blaring through the house- YEA!! Here is our new doormat!}

There you go- SO excited for Thursday! Happy Thanksgiving! Just a reminder, I am doing a little "favorite things" give away the first week of December, so make sure to follow on Facebook or Twitter   to stay informed! I am REALLY pumped about it!


Preparing for CHRISTmas!!!

I have been doing a lot of research on Christmas "activities" that we can do with the girls to prepare for Christmas and focus on something other than presents. Here are all of the options I can up with!

{Of course, The Elf on the Shelf I wrote about it last year- HERE
{Last year we tried Jesse Tree- I talked about it in the same article HERE. We are not going to do Jesse  Tree this year- it is a little old for my girls and it was like pulling teeth trying to get them to do it. We will keep that for future years...great idea though!}

{Your Christmas Angel is a great idea- instead of the elf...an angel! Wish I would have known about this last year before purchasing that expensive little elf!!! We are sticking with "Eddy" but I love the angel!}

{What God Wants for Christmas- this is one thing we are FOR SURE doing this year. It is just 7 days and each day has 1 box to open with a little story/info- each box contains one thing to put in the nativity scene (provided). I love it- it is simple, meaningful and fun! We are going to do 1 per week from the Sunday after Thanksgiving- So we will do it the following dates: 11/25, 12/2, 9, 16, 23, 24, 25}
{My friend Amy sent me this link from our friend Shanna, Truth in the Tinsel- their website has some fun Christmas ideas too (they also mention a lot of the same ones I found- which is always good confirmation of research! Anyway- seems like Jesse Tree but for young kids- and it is an ebook which is great and you can print the ornaments- perfect- making those Jesse Tree ornaments was a pain!}
{We will be doing this also, Advent Storybook: 24 Stories to Share Before Christmas. It is a sweet book where you read one story each day before Christmas (and they are short 1 page stories!)- It has an advent calendar to go with it (we are not doing the calendar). This book follows a little bear on his journey to Bethlehem and he learns about the true spirit of Christmas along the way! I am excited about this one- short and so sweet! My vision is: our family sitting at the tree each night- no lights but the ones on the tree and reading these short stories...I will keep you posted- usually my "visions" get altered a bit!}

{The ADVENTure of Christmas is a book by Lisa Whelchel and it has SO MANY fun ideas of things to do with kids leading up to Christmas to teach them the "reason for the season". It takes all of the traditions and explains them to kids in a fun way- a craft or something to bake, teachable moments, stories, etc.. It is a great book. We will use some of the ideas each year (I would be exhausted trying all of them)}

Hope that gave you some fun ideas- let me know if you have any favorites! Stay tuned...I am doing my FIRST EVER give-away the first week of December and I am just SO excited! Make sure to follow on Facebook or Twitter to stay informed! (Of course if you like this- make sure to Pin away)!!! 


Kids Devotional!

Hello! I am checking in really quickly to tell you about something exciting that we started. I like the idea of a daily devotional in our home- but we don't always have a ton of time at bedtime to sit and do something in-depth- is it "no time" or "no energy"? hmm ANYWAY- we started doing Jesus Calling: 365 Devotions for Kids by Sarah Young. I HIGHLY recommend it- you can do a quick read the one pager and off to bed or you can go more in-depth with other suggested scripture to look up. It is awesome- check it out! (and...how cute is the cover, I love cute books!) Stay tuned, I found the MOST EXCITING Advent stuff to do with kids today- waiting to get one more in the mail to review, then I will give you the full juice!


Sunday Recap!

Here is our Sunday Recap for this week!

{Here is my favorite "playing in the leaves" photo- they had a blast!}

{Izzy made this on the back of her school pic for her Aunty J- I ADORE this pic!!}

{I always want to display the girls school art but I dont want it all over the house- so I have a spot in the garage next to the chalk paint where I pin it up- the girls LOVE it, every time we pull in or out we get to see it!}

{Our cousins came to stay for the weekend- 6 kids under the age of 8- they just love each other! We had a super hero party- they loved it}

 {The boys are serious Superheroes- I made them sit for the picture above and Henley (the oldest) told me that superheroes dont sit for pictures!}

{I got the new Veggie Tales: The League of Incredible Vegetables  movie for them to watch- I was a little nervous because they watch all of the "real" superhero movies and they are funny about watching "kid stuff" but I dont let my girls watch those other movies- so it is always a struggle. HOWEVER...they LOVED it- the boys gave it two thumbs up and said it was the best Veggie Tales movie ever- whew!}

{Of course we needed Ice cream!}

{This is proof that we had 6 children at a restaurant and lived to tell about it :) We were seriously outnumbered- especially because the A&M vs Alabama game was on directly above the booth where Dave had a perfect view- I dont need to elaborate on that!}


Thanksgiving Is Coming!!!

I LOVE this time of year- I love Thanksgiving and I REALLY LOVE Christmas! We also have all three of our girls b-days (end of November, January and February)- so between now and February we are a) party animals and b) really poor!! 
As you might know, I am a planner- so yes I have already purchased most of my Thanksgiving essentials and yes I have started Christmas/birthday shopping. Stay tuned...I am about to whip the Christmas music playlist and decorations out because I just cant wait! Anyway, in case you are curious about our favorite Thanksgiving "shortcuts"..which are DELIGHTFUL, here they are. 

My favorite Thanksgiving Cheaters: (buy early, they sell out!)

{1. Trader Joes Cornbread Stuffing (no chopping, no baking required- always trying to save oven space)}

{7. Trader Joes has an awesome frozen pumpkin cheesecake and pumpkin ice cream- get them early they sell out- SO YUMMY!}

In addition to the shortcuts above- I do like the traditional recipes:

 (if you click on the dish- it will take you to the recipe I am using)
-Green Bean Casserole
-Sweet Potatoes (I like actual sweet potatoes- not canned- I do not love super sweet SP)
-Mashed Potatoes (mom makes these, I am a bad mashed p maker!), 
-Corn (Dave requires this, I am going to try this recipe this year: LINK I can not verify if this is good)
- I am trying this Stuffing this year
- of course rolls- but I dont have anything special to share on those
- I also do a chocolate sheet cake if we have a lot of people HERE is the recipe
- Pumpkin Pie- lots of times we grab this from Costco- yummy, easy and cheap! :) and of course the Pumpkin Cheesecake mentioned above. 

And...this year..(drum roll) I am taking on the gigantic task of making my grandmothers homemade noodles- growing up this was the #1 favorite dish for the ENTIRE family and no one has really done it since she passed away. I want my kids and my brother's kids to know about "THE NOODLES"! So I am taking the plunge- I will have an entire post about them if they turn out because I will be so stinkin' proud of myself!! :) 

Let me know if you have any favorites- 

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