Saturday, February 20, 2010

ABC Date Challenge

Man, I love my husband.  Look how pulled together he looks and how dorky I look! Muse lyrics are running through my head:

I thought I was a fool for no one, ohhh baby I'm a fool for you ...

P.S. This photo was from my 10 year reunion.  My friend Jina planned the event and found these glasses. They were a big hit, obviously.

Anyway, Matt and I did this date as a part of our Valentine's Celebration.

Here's what you do:

  1. Write each letter of the alphabet on a separate post-it note.
  2. Each couple draws 13 letters.
  3. For each letter, come up with a silly or romantic date event you can do RIGHT NOW.
  4. There are bonus points for doubling or tripling the letters--Scattergories style
  5. Put the letters in a hat and draw them out one at a time, doing what the slips of paper say.
  6. No one wins, no one loses.  What am I saying, it's so much fun you'll both win!
Some of our letters:
C--cuddle on the couch
D--double dog dare you to ______________
E--eat dessert
H--hold hands
P--play poker
Q--Quietly whispers a compliment 

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Things I Love--Cloth Diapers

There is a pretty big debate about cloth diapers.

Side #1--Cloth diapers take a lot of water to make; they take a lot of water to wash; they take a lot of time to care clean and fold; they make your kids smelly ...

Side #2--Cloth diapers require less water to wash than it takes disposable diapers to be made; cloth diapers have no harsh chemicals; cloth diapers don't fill up landfills; cloth diapers help kids potty train faster ...

In true Reagan fashion, I'm gonna tell you what I think.

I had a friend tell me she was going to use cloth diapers and I told her she was nuts (sorry, Ami).  Then I met Rene and Beth who used them and they looked comfy and sweet. Both of these gals shared a lot of information with me so by the time I found out I was preggers with Pax, I decided to look into using them.  But then I teetered--would it be too much work?  At that time, Molly lovingly reminded me that I have a washing machine and dryer so unless I feared getting carpel tunnel from turning on the machines' buttons, I should drop the purse and get the diapers.  And I did.

The result?

Is Pax's 6 month old tushy bum not the cutest thing ever!  I could eat it up!

I LOVE cloth diapers.
                                          I think they are amazing.

  • They rarely leak (because I treat them very well).  
  • They are super affordable (though it's a lot of up front cost).  
  • The laundry is not overwhelming. 
  •  Pax's bum is always cushy and he has only had one diaper rash.  (And anyone who knows M.E. knows that she was super allergic to the chemicals in diapers and had such bad rashes that her bum lost chunks of skin and bled). 

I use BumGenius 3-n-1 cloth diapers.  I got them from Kelly's Closet I literally got the package below in "boy" colors and got the Twilight baby legs.  Super cute!

If you are interested in cloth diapers but scared about the prospect of trying them, contact me at  I'd love to chat with you about cloth diapers.

Oh ya, remember the gray area.  You can cloth diaper halfway--use cloth by day and disposable by night!

What about you?  Have tried cloth?  Why or why not?  What did you think?  Love 'em or leave 'em?

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

What I Think About--Reading the Bible in 90 Days

Element Church , our home church, issued a 90 Day Breaking Free Challenge.  As a part of this challenge, the pastoral staff challenged members to do or change something for 90 days.  Maybe it's breaking free of those blogs you keep reading Facebook games, kicking a bad habit, or praying more diligently.  In terms of change, Pastor Jeff encouraged folks to think about getting into the Word.  The church offered several reading plans: read the New Testament in 90 Days, Read every day for 90 days, and read the entire Bible in 90 days.

I've read the Bible cover to cover before but I'm generally on the one year path of doing so.  Lately my Bible reading has been more sporadic so I decided to read the Bible in 90 Days.  Yikes.

To do this I have to get up much earlier (between 5:30-6:00 am).  I read about 16 chapters a morning and it takes me roughly an hour.  I'm not gonna lie, it's intense.

I've not mentioned this to too many people but the folks who do know keep asking: Are you getting anything out of it?

So here's what I think.

I am spending time in the Word.  Yes, I'm getting something out of it.

In the past, I have had quiet moments in the Word where one passage could rock my world for hours.  Literally, one passage (FYI--right now that passage is Genesis 3:16 "your desire will be for your husband and he will rule over you"--WOW--what does this say about the fight over who wears the pants in the family?  A woman's control issues?  Can I get a YIKES! to that?).  While one passage or even verse can really speak to me, I'm not convinced that it means whole sections cannot.

Before I enter the Word I go before God asking for His will as I read.  I ask for guidance, for my mind to be opened, to hear and see His voice.  And He is meeting me where I am.

Maybe I am not getting as much as if I was reading very slowly (but how could I show it one way or the other?).  But on the other hand, maybe I'm getting more because I'm powering through on the grace of His Holy Spirit.  I'm coming to Him longing to know and understand.  He is graciously filling me.

I can't even begin to tell what I've learned in only 17 days.  My eyes have been opened to issues within my heart that need dealt with; I've come to understand areas where deception is destroying relationships that I'm apart of; I've been inspired that our God can and will overcome.  He is a big, big God.

90 Days will not be enough to soak it all in but it's a dang good start.

Are you interested?  Check here for the 3 reading plans.

Has anyone else done this?  What say you?

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Too Clean Tuesday--Crayon removal

After M.E.'s quiet time a few weeks ago I went into her room and found that she decorated the base of her window seat with blue crayon.  It was a beautiful, creative masterpiece and I regretted having to tell her that coloring on walls is specifically prohibited and that we'd have to clean the crayon off the wall (before dad saw it).

My sister loves the Magic Eraser for such tasks but I've yet to buy my first Magic Eraser (yes, I'm that cheap.  If you are shocked I'll send you my address and you can mail me one--ha ha).

Anyhow, if you are in this position and you don't have a Magic Eraser either, try to scrub the crayon off with EITHER (meaning, don't mix) ammonia on a clean, white cloth or a cloth and toothpaste.  Which ever you try, make sure you rinse the wall off when you're finished.

Worked for me.  Good luck getting it done!

Days of Play--What fits?

This activity helps children develop a sense of sizing.

There are two ways to play.

1.  Get several jars/vases and trace them on paper.  Talk with your child about what could fit in the jar.  Have him or her get the items and see if they will fit within the boundaries of what you traced.

2.  Get different sized jars, tupperware, etc., and let your child actually try to put stuff in there.  Beware--if you child is attached to something that goes in but not out, you might end up breaking a jar :)  My suggestion, do this only with wide-mouthed containers (like old Peanut butter jars) or plastic items you don't mind cutting (like a milk jug).

Monday, February 15, 2010

Time Management Junkie--Skill #1--The Priority List

A couple of years ago I took on too much at once.  Ever do that?  Anyhow, I ended up doing  a lot of stuff halfway.  I didn’t do a terrible job but I didn’t do any of it with excellence.   That is so not me.  One day when I was crying venting to Matt, he suggested I pull out of some of my obligations.  My initial thought--what?!?!  His stance: Better to give the work to someone who would do a great job than to rely on someone who didn’t have the energy to do her best.  This was my, “Aha, I need a priority list” moment.  Ever have one of those?

If you are feeling overwhelmed, busy, or stressed for time, might I suggest that you step inside yourself and inventory your priority list?  Here’s some truth. 

If everything is important, than nothing is.

What matters to you and what doesn’t?  I literally won’t sleep if the dishes aren’t done; that’s a hill I’ll die on.  Does is matter if I don’t know what I’m wearing tomorrow?  Not so much.  My day will be a disaster if I don’t know by 10 am what we are having for dinner.  Do I care if we have hot dogs for lunch?  Nope.  I will play with my children.  Period.  Do I care if the laundry is done?  It is preferable, but not mandatory.

Here’s my top 10 (in no specific order):
  • Good night’s rest
  • Quiet time for prayer, devotions, etc.
  • Solid, healthy breakfast (really, if I don't get some good protein in the a.m. I am NOT a pretty sight)
  • Dinner planned
  • Time to play with my children
  • Alone time with Matt
  • A hot shower
  • Dinner as a family around the table
  • A clean (looking) house (this is where the dishes come in).
  • A chance to visit with an adult

I’m not overly precise and picky about how these are done (meaning my quiet time could be at 6 am one morning and 9 pm the next day. Sometimes alone time and prayer time are done in the hot shower). The point is I have priorities but, though more solid than some of my negotiables, they are still kind-of negotiable.

Are you wondering why a list helps?  Well, if you are running out of time,  you do your priorities, not the negotiable but you can't do that until you know which are which.

So make a list right now of 10 things that HAVE to get done every day for your day to run smoothly.  Think on this; mull it over with your husband.  Maybe each write a list and compare them. Create a couples list--what needs do you both have and how can you help one another.

Make your list and then come back here and share it.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Days of Play--Cookie Decorating

Happy Valentine's Day!

Today is very special at our house because Mr. Gooey Guster is being dedicated this morning.
We are SOOO excited.  Afterwards our friends and family are dropping by for a soup bar, homemade rolls, and fellowship!

If your day is more low key, I suggest making some sugar cookies and decorating them.  This is a great recipe .  They won't be cut outs but you can still frost and sprinkle them!  Mmmmmm....