Saturday, January 22, 2011

BIG DEALS!

I bought all of this for only $25!! It was originally $64!!
Some people aren't into clipping coupons. I used to be one of those people. I thought that the people that clipped coupons were weirdos that weren't really going to save that much money in the end. Then I went to a coupon class at my church. The lady that taught the class has a family of seven (2 adults and 5 kids), they used to spend over $1000 at the grocery store every month which is pretty close to what I spend for our family of 4. However this lady now spends less than $300 per month on EVERYTHING... produce, normal groceries, and toiletry items. I thought that this lady must be spending literally ALL of her time working on her coupons but I found out that you can do it all fairly easily. This was my first "real" coupon trip and I saved almost $40! That's insane. If I go to the store 3 more times this month that means I will save over $160 and spend about $100. I am sure there are a few little things that I need to purchase in the beginning that wont be on sale or have a coupon but in the end I will be able to save a lot of money. This is great for anyone in any situation... Married, Single, Kids, No Kids... Anyone likes to save a buck or two.
If you are at all interested in saving some money please check out the website www.couponcloset.net you will fall in love with coupons and how easy it is to save money.

Good luck in all of your future money saving adventures! :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Spelling our name!

Gibson has impressed us so much in the last year with everything he has learned and how far he has come since November of '09 when he wasnt hardly talking at all. Now he is spelling out his name and knows what he spelled. We are amazed!
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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Save a Penny...

I went to the coupon class at my church tonight with lots of girls from out Sunday School class. I learned a lot more this time around than I did the first time and I am hoping to really dive into the world of couponing now! If you are interested in learning some of the things we learned in class go to www.couponcloset.net
The information is a little overwhelming at first but it is amazing what this lady saves every month and I hope that I can do the same. :) We are making some changes in our house over the next year or so and this will help us out a ton!!
More to come on our money saving ventures!! :)

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

You dont understand...

Gerod and I decided to take the family to Jason's Deli after church on Sunday. On Sunday our Jason's Deli is extremely busy because of the church crowd. When we got to the restaurant there were quite a few people there but it wasn't packed until about 15 min later. We got the boys in high chairs and Gerod got into the long line to place our order. Sitting at the table trying to entertain a tired 1 year old and a 3 year old with a short attention span is, needless to say, VERY difficult!
As I was waiting for Gerod to finish up in the long line I noticed a family with a Mom and Dad around my parents age and their kids (I assume) that were probably close to my age. They sat down after us at a table right next to where we were sitting.
Gibson was getting restless and although he was making very little noise he was being somewhat irritating pushing his high chair backwards and then pulling himself back up to the table. I asked him to stop, quietly, a few times. The entire time he was doing this the Mom from the table next to us kept glaring at Gibson. Once he stopped doing messing with his chair he decided it would be fun to play with the pepper shaker. At one point it slid across the table and fell on the floor right next to the foot of the Mom at the next table. The son picked up the pepper shaker and handed it to me, to which I apologized for Gibson's accident. The Mom again glared at Gibson then turned to her family and said the following: "If you kids ever acted like that out in public I would have taken you outside. You guys never acted like that in public though. Its so irritating when parents don't make their children behave." It took all of my strength not to fly across the table and give that lady a piece of my mind. First of all, no child is a saint and I am quite sure that at some point her children were obnoxious in public. Secondly, Gibson was not being bad... yes he wasn't listening to me very well but I have had many worse situations with him and in my opinion he was being very good.
Situations like this infuriate me because the people that talk badly about my child for one have no right to talk bad about him like that and two they have no idea of the struggles that Gibson is faced with daily. I don't understand why other people out there think they are so much better than others especially when they have no clue of the situation that they are talking badly about.
With that being said I hope that I can ask everyone that reads this blog a big favor... If you see a Mom struggling with her child don't automatically come to a swift judgement about her and her parenting style. You never know what is REALLY going on there. I ask that you maybe give a helping hand or give her an encouraging word, not talk bad about her and her child right in front of her. You never know what something as small as asking if you can help her with something or telling her its okay might go. I know that there have been certain situations where people have done this for me and it has almost brought me to tears of thanks.
Acts of kindness can go a very long way!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone. I head out to Texas first thing in the morning!
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Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Do you really know?

Because my Great Grandmother passed away today I have been thinking a lot about life. I spoke with my Dad on the phone tonight and he read me a story that my Great Grandmother wrote about her life; growing up, getting married, having children, owning successful businesses, and seeing the world change around her. There were so many things in the story that I just didn't know about my Grandmother. I guess I just never thought to ask her about her life. Oh there were the stories that I heard over and over again that I could tell lots of people about but truthfully I learned more about my Grandmother in the short time that I was on the phone tonight than I had learned in the 26+ years that I have been alive.
This makes me wonder how much people really know about their family; where family members are from, when they got married, what major world events did they witness that we only get to read about in the history books? I wonder how many people out there were stunned to find out something about a loved one only after they passed on. I know that for me it is a blessing that my Grandmother was asked to write these things down on paper. Now I can share things about her life with my children and in turn they can share them with their children.
I encourage you as I write this, to sit down with an elder in your family and ask them questions. Ask them about how different it was growing up then as opposed to now. I am sure there are many stories to be told and many stories that we will never hear but I know that we will never learn things about our family and its history unless we listen, truly listen to the people that have been through it all before. I hope that I will take this new found knowledge and speak to my living relatives about what things were like back when they were young. I might even take it upon myself to write some of their stories down so that future generations of my family will know about the history of our family.

One last mention about my Grandmother that I thought was too sweet for words:
My uncle sat down with my Grandmother the other day and prayed with her, they prayed that she would accept Christ as her Savior because she couldn't remember if she ever truly had done that. Then she followed by saying that she was 96 years old and she was entitled to forget things *still witty as ever*. She prayed with my uncle so that she would be assured a place in Heaven alongside her two husbands and two of her children (one of whom was my amazing Grandmother; Barbara Ann). I love the song "I Can Only Imagine" and every time I hear it I think of my late Grandmother Barbara and now I know that when I hear it I will think: I can only imagine what fun my family is having in Heaven and I know that I will rejoice when I can see them again!
Jennie Mae
Christmas 2009
God Bless you and your family... please hug and kiss your dear family members because you never really know when they wont be with you any longer.
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Great Grandmother

Today is a sad day, I got a phone call from my Dad earlier who let me know that my Great Grandmother passed away early this morning. It makes me very sad that she is no longer with us but she lived a great life. She died at the age of 96 and she was spunky up till the very end. Here I am with her on Christmas Day.
 And here is my Dad with her. She was his only living Grandmother left.
I am so glad that we were able to see her one last time before she passed away. She insisted that we bring the boys over for her to see them. The smile on her face was priceless watching the boys play in her room. Gibson even gave her a kiss and told her bye bye.
I am thankful for her in so many more ways than I can write about. She was an amazing woman and I only hope that I can be like her. I am happy that she went peacefully and that she is doing much better now. She can be with her two late husbands and two of her children up in Heaven. I know that she is rejoicing to be with her family again!

Love you Great Grandma, you will truly be missed!
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Monday, January 10, 2011

Clipping Coupons

One of my goals for 2011 is saving money! One of the ways I plan on saving money is by doing something I made fun of my grandma for doing when I was younger. I always hated going to the grocery store and her pulling out her many coupons just to save some money. I had no clue just how smart she was!
I went to a coupon class back in November and I will be going to another of these classes on January 20th at my church. I cant wait to start working on my spending habits, especially in the grocery store because that is where I spend the most money. I have two boys so spending money on food is something that is NEVER going to go away, that is until they move out but that is far off in the future.
If your interested in attending the class it will be Jan 20th at BFC in Bethany, OK. I look forward to learning more about couponing! One of the girls that teaches the class went from spending over $1000 on groceries every month to spending less than $300!! That is some serious savings!! :)
The coupon website is here!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

What's Going On?

Lots of things going on in our household lately!

Gibson and Chad are no longer in Mothers Day Out. Gibson, unfortunately, has experienced his first sign of discrimination for being "different" from the other kids. Gibson was kicked out of Mothers Day Out because he was "too hard to handle" according to the teachers in his class. I don't feel like standing on a soap box right now but this really frustrates me. I know that sometimes Gibson can be difficult but I don't see how he is so bad that two teachers cant handle him on top of only 7 more students. I could understand if the class were much larger but it isn't. Needless to say Gerod and I decided to take Chad out of the program as well because we didn't think it was fair for Chad to be able to go while Gibson couldn't go.

Now that Gibson is not going to MDO he is in school Monday-Thursday from Noon to 3pm. He LOVES his class and his teacher. I cant say enough about how much I love his teacher and everything she does not only just for Gibson but for all of the other kids in his class. She has a heart of gold and she truly loves those kids! It makes me so happy that we were placed in a class with a teacher like her. Gibson is doing really well at school and I am getting better reports each and every day. I cant wait to see all the changes when May comes around.

Chad is teething like NO OTHER, he is constantly waking up in the middle of the night and it is about to drive Gerod and I crazy. However, we know that this too shall pass and we are looking forward to the time when we can put Chad to bed and he doesn't wake up until morning. Other than that Chad is doing wonderful! He loves his big brother and I am enjoying the fact that they are finally getting along and playing well together.

Gerod and I just celebrated our 6th anniversary and we couldn't be happier. I think we are happier now than we were on the day we got married. We are enjoying our lives together and we are enjoying our children more than we ever could have imagined.
We have some big changes ahead, so if you can please be praying that we make the right decisions. We are very excited about what is in store for our little family of four! More to come on all the changes that are in store for us will be coming soon!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Weight Loss Wednesday!

I kind of regret saying that I would make Wednesday a post about my weight loss. Not because I am not actually working on it, but rather because I am not usually one to go on about talking about my weight (except to my husband who hears me talk about it all the time).
I started everything off by downloading the "lose it!" app on my phone. It is helping me a ton because I can track all of my calories during the day. I can enter in food that I prepare, or food that we get at a restaurant and I am staying more on track. I have realized though that some of the foods I have been eating in the past are completely horrible for me! You think that because there are veggies in something that it makes it good for you... but there are lots of calories in things I didn't even know about.
Anyway... I am down 3 lbs (who knows if this is real weight or just water weight) but I am down to a number that I have'nt been at in a LONG time and its all from just one week of eating healthier and starting a work out plan.
In the area of working out I found an AWESOME thing on Cox Cable. If you go to your On Demand Free Zone and go into the Health & Wellness section you will find Exercise TV. This thing is AMAZING. I can work out to a great fitness video (there are TONS to choose from) and I dont have to spend a penny. Usually I end up signing up at a gym and then losing interest because its just one more place that I have to be and with two kids its next to impossible to do that all week long. So this is not only free but unbelievably convenient.
So I am working out, eating healthy and hopefully by the end of March I will be looking better too!

I am going on a trip to Kansas City for my annual Premier Designs Regional Rally and I am leaving on Thursday. I am really excited because this is the first year that our region is moving our rally to KC and I have never been there before. I only hope that I can stay focused on my goal and eat right and possibly throw in some exercise while Im there. I know that convention food isnt the best to stay on your diet but believe me I will try!

Until next Wednesday!
Hopefully I will have dropped a bit more by then.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Emotional Rollercoaster

As I have mentioned before, some days are harder than others. When you sign on to be a mother it is a job that doesn't come with a handbook. You don't have a schedule of set jobs to do. You don't have a road map of where you may be in the years to come. You just have to live life day by day and see where things take you.
My role as a mom started on September 26th 2007 when my sweetheart Gibson was born, actually before that if you count pregnancy. Although pregnancy is another thing with no set path it is not quite the same as when your child is actually born and you have that brand new baby in your arms. I never knew exactly what was in store for me and my family on that day over 3 years ago. I didn't know that we would have a child that has Autism. I. Had. No. Clue.
I didn't know much about Autism when I started researching it as a possibility for what I saw going on in my son. I have learned so much since I first got on the computer and typed in that word. I always thought that there was a clear definition for Autism and my son didn't fit the bill. Boy was I wrong! I had no idea just how broad the Autism spectrum is, nor did I know just how much is yet to be found out about Autism. We have no REAL clue as to what causes it... people have their speculations, but that is not what this post is about. We have no way of know how to cure Autism, or if there really is a cure. All we know is that there are therapies out there and they may or may not help our children.
Gibson started speech therapy back in November of 2009. After a year of therapy he is doing in many cases 100% better! He is actually talking which is, to say the least, one of our very biggest blessings. I know some families who have children who do not talk at all. We are blessed beyond measure that our only struggle with speech right now is that Gibson is still delayed but otherwise speaking about as well as a 2 year old would. Parents of (as we call them) "typical" kids really have no idea what it means to have your child tell you what happened at school that day, or follow simple directions. But these are things we deal with every single day. Gibson has made so many strides that it is hard for me to write about me having a bad day, but I am no different in that way than any other parent out there.
Today was a hard day. I am not sure what sent me over the edge emotionally but I just gave up at the end of the night. I was beyond ready physically, and emotionally for the kids to go to bed. I just needed to rest my mind. Spending an entire day with your kids is simply stated bitter sweet. You have those times where you just quite frankly want to pull your hair out and yet in the next second you want nothing more than to squeeze and cuddle and kiss on those sweet little faces of theirs.
I know that eventually things will get better, or I will get stronger. I know that God has his hands in this and he will guide me through and sometimes I think that days like today happen to me so that I can sit back and realize that I am not the one in control here. God is always in control. I need to let him lead me more than I do and I think that once I can let go things will fall into place better or at least I will be more at ease when things don't go the way I plan.
I am praying that tomorrow is a better brighter day and I know that the best way to start off on the right foot is to have a positive attitude. Tomorrow I will have a smile on my face knowing that in the end it is one more day that I have to spend with my kids... even if they do drive me a little crazy sometimes! ;)

Chocolate Pudding

Gibson was a big boy all weekend so I decided to treat him with chocolate pudding for dessert. Gibson helped me make the instant pudding and loved licking the spoon! Go figure!
We had fun and I look forward to letting him help me cook things more often. He really seems to enjoy it.
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Sunday, January 2, 2011

6 years of wedded bliss!

I met my wonderful husband Gerod at a basketball game at the junior college in my hometown on February 11, 2002. From that night I feel like we both had a small case of "love at first sight".
Our first date was on Valentines Day 3 days after our first meeting at a quaint little Italian restaurant in Midland. By candlelight we visited about anything and everything. He gave me a rose because he said he had to give me a rose on Valentines Day. What a Gentleman! Our courtship was a whirlwind after that night and we had our first kiss to end our 3rd date.
2 years after our first date to the day we got engaged. Valentines Day of 2004 was absolutely amazing. We went out for a picnic dinner that ended up being held at center court of the basketball arena where we first met. After our picnic dinner Gerod led me up the stairs to the upper level where I saw rose petals that spelled out "Marry Me" on the ground. Gerod got down on one knee and opened up the ring box and I of course said "YES". Nine short months later we were wed in a small church in my hometown.
6 years later I still feel like I am married to my best friend. Gerod and I laugh together, cry together and love each other more than most people can ever say. After having two beautiful children together it just makes our love even stronger. I don't know what I would do without this wonderful man in my life.
I absolutely LOVE him and I look forward to many many more years to come.

We actually got to sneak out for a date night and were able to leave the kids with a great babysitter for our Anniversary evening. We went to a great new place we have found called the Sushi Bar and it was awesome! We had some great food for dinner and then headed to the movie theater where we watched the newest Harry Potter movie. Gerod really loves me for going to that movie with me!
Check out the awesome sushi we had for dinner! It was delish.
(Gerod was embarrassed that I took this picture!)
  I am glad we were able to get out for a great date night to celebrate 6 amazing years of marriage. I cant wait to see what 2011 has in store for our marriage and our family.
I am so glad that I have such an amazing man by my side that I can walk through this journey hand in hand with.