Being Grateful When Things Are Bad

The past couple of days have been a doozy here. As you all know my kiddos have had the stomach bug, then Mr. Awesome caught it, and then I got it. It seems to be taking me a bit longer to get over it but today I do feel like I’m on the mend. I’ll spend today focusing on getting rehydrated and trying to eat a little bit.

Even if you aren’t sick I know this time is harder for some than for others. We are facing a lot of changes and uncertainties that we’ve never dealt with before.

Continue reading “Being Grateful When Things Are Bad”

Keeping The Crazy Away By Keeping Busy

How’s everyone doing? If you are like a lot of folks then you might be getting a little stir crazy right now and it seems that the shutdowns in our area are only getting started.

Many parents are having to deal with the stresses of their kids being out of school… we all know how easily kids can get bored. Well, if you need some ideas to keep those kiddos entertained then be sure to check out some of the links I have listed under our Homeschool Tab! There are tons of fun (and educational) things to keep the kiddos busy.

I might even recommend that you check out our ‘Little House Academic Adventures’ if you’re kiddos are out of school. There are tons of great links and videos that they can do for FREE while learning about how things were in the 1800s. My kiddos have really enjoyed these lessons so far and we are looking forward to getting moved and getting started with them again!

You can also check out some of the other programs like Kids Cook Real Foods (link under the Homeschool tab), Mystery Science, and/or Skill Trek for ideas to keep your kids in learning mode.

For my kiddos it’s really not a big change. I’ve had my kiddos helping a bit with moving things over to the new house. They are finally getting over the stomach bug (although Mr. Awesome seems to have it now) so they’ve been outside quite a bit as well.

When they are indoors they are reading books, playing board games, or coloring. Our internet seems to be on the fritz right now so no TV or tablets … which is probably a good thing.

I have been trying to keep myself busy. I really need to pick up a few things at the grocery store but I’m trying to hold out a few more days. I’m also keeping my fingers crossed that they will have grocery pickup available when I need to run out.

We will be doing some pantry challenges to get by until things return to normal. You can find out more about our pantry challenges by using the search bar. For lunch we are having some pigs in a blanket and I pulled out a freezer meal for dinner tonight. I’ll try to add some links later on but my laptop has been packed up right now. 😦

Our weekly dances have been cancelled so I will really miss getting out and seeing other adults. We are planning to keep to ourselves for a bit… something we are really quite good at anyway. I do have a few appointments (more than usual) scheduled this month that we will be keeping. I plan to leave the kiddos at home though if they don’t need to go.

This is a great time to start on some Spring cleaning as well. Yesterday I cleaned out the kitchen and dining room in the new house. I also scrubbed and polished the floors which look pretty awesome this morning!

Mr. Awesome helped move a couple of the pantry shelves over to the house. I secured them to the wall (to prevent tip overs), cleaned them, and got them sorted.

I might paint these eventually but that will be later on after we get moved and I make sure this is where I really want them.

While I worked on arranging and rearranging things Mr. Awesome worked in the bathroom. They got the insulation in and then they got the ceiling down. He had planned to get the new exhaust fan up but the ceiling needed some additional framing so they worked on that instead.

This morning I cleaned off the island that I’ve been using as my workstation. I also emptied it and had planned on getting someone to help me move it but now that he is sick I guess that will have to wait.

We still need to carry some of the stuff over to the house.

I might try to get a few things moved over after I get the laundry finished for the day. (I’m loving the new machines.) I saw a recent post about things to do while being ‘quarantined’ and I might just tackle a few of those in the old house if I don’t feel like moving anything later.

I know our little house could use a good cleaning. I have been cleaning as I go but it’s been hard trying to work around all the chaos here.

If I’m felling crafty at some point I have a couple of old wooden spoons that need some TLC. I plan to paint them and hopefully make them look something like the picture below. There are a ton of things on my To-Do list that I can probably tackle.

We know from past experiences that things are likely to get worse before they get better but remember that it will pass. Keep your eyes on Him and trust in His plan even though it may be hard to understand right now.

We are sending our thoughts and prayers to everyone being affected by this crisis.. and praying that it is over soon!

What are some things you are doing to stay busy and make the most of your time right now?

Anyone Have A Square To Spare?

Oh my goodness, what a day!

I’ve had some of the kitchen reno posts scheduled but I think I forgot to show you the new shelf paper that we put up. I took the vacuum cleaner and cleaned out all of the cabinets and then wiped them down really well. After they had dried I put up some new shelf paper that we found at Lowes. It looks so much better than the cow print that was there!

I know this is not something that everyone does but I like that it makes the shelves so much easier to clean… especially the ones that are old and not so smooth to start with!


**This post does contain affiliate links to products and/or services that we use. If you happen to click through a link and make a purchase we may earn a teensy-weensy small commission (at NO EXTRA cost to you) if a purchase is made through these links. These links help to support our family, our blog, and our homeschooling mission. This means that we can keep bringing you great recipes, ideas, and tips for FREE! Click HERE for a full disclaimer.

 –Thank you!


Continue reading “Anyone Have A Square To Spare?”

A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 3

As you all know we have been so busy working on our new house. We never dreamed that we’d still be working on it and we are anxious to get completely moved in but it has truly been one thing after another.

Be warned… this post has a TON of pictures! It will also have quite a few affiliate links to the products that we used but please feel free to go directly to the product web sites for exclusive coupons and deals. This post did get a little bit long so I split it so make it easier for reading. Be sure to check out the first post HERE and the second post HERE.

First, let’s take peek at what we started with:

We had your basic 90s kitchen package which is similar to many other mobile home kitchens. Plus we had 20+ years of dirt and grime caked on these babies!

The flooring, stove, and dishwasher are new so we wanted to make those work. We also have a new fridge for here but have found that it is a tad too big for the space so we will be keeping the old one here for now. We plan to fully renovate the kitchen in a few years so we didn’t want to sink a whole lot of money into this project. All in all, I think we stayed just shy of $400 with the biggest single expense going to the new hood range. Continue reading “A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 3”

Yet Another Unexpected Roadblock! (Updated)

Hey there everyone! How have you been? I’ve been on the computer most of the morning taking care of some paperwork and applications for the kids’ schooling and such. Our slow internet makes things take two or three times as long as they should and it’s making me CRAZY! I’m actually writing this post as I wait for some scholarship information to pull up.

I was hoping to be writing with some good news but unfortunately, we have hit yet another roadblock with the house. Disclaimer: This post may be a partial vent! This past weekend we had planned to get quite a few things accomplished and possibly get quite a bit moved in but that didn’t happen. Continue reading “Yet Another Unexpected Roadblock! (Updated)”

A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 2

As you all know we have been so busy working on our new house. We never dreamed that we’d still be working on it and we are anxious to get completely moved in but it has truly been one thing after another.

Be warned… this post has a TON of pictures! It will also have quite a few affiliate links to the products that we used but please feel free to go directly to the product web sites for exclusive coupons and deals. This post did get a little bit long so I split it so make it easier for reading. Be sure to check out the first post HERE and the last post HERE.

First, let’s take peek at what we started with:

We had your basic 90s kitchen package which is similar to many other mobile home kitchens. Plus we had 20+ years of dirt and grime caked on these babies!

The flooring, stove, and dishwasher are new so we wanted to make those work. We also have a new fridge for here but have found that it is a tad too big for the space so we will be keeping the old one here for now. We plan to fully renovate the kitchen in a few years so we didn’t want to sink a whole lot of money into this project. All in all, I think we stayed just shy of $400 with the biggest single expense going to the new hood range. Continue reading “A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 2”

A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 1

As you all know we have been so busy working on our new house. We never dreamed that we’d still be working on it and we are anxious to get completely moved in but it has truly been one thing after another.

Be warned… this post has a TON of pictures! It will also have quite a few affiliate links to the products that we used but please feel free to go directly to the product web sites for exclusive coupons and deals. This post did get a little bit long so I split it so make it easier for reading. Be sure to check out the second post HERE.

First, let’s take peek at what we started with:

We had your basic 90s kitchen package which is similar to many other mobile home kitchens. Plus we had 20+ years of dirt and grime caked on these babies!

The flooring, stove, and dishwasher are new so we wanted to make those work. We also have a new fridge for here but have found that it is a tad too big for the space so we will be keeping the old one here for now. We plan to fully renovate the kitchen in a few years so we didn’t want to sink a whole lot of money into this project. All in all, I think we stayed just shy of $400 with the biggest single expense going to the new hood range. Continue reading “A ‘Like New’ Kitchen With Product Links Part 1”

Life Update: We’re Still Here!

Hey everybody… it feels like its been FOREVER since I’ve posted. I have really missed you all… that might sound funny but I love seeing the notifications from readers and reading the comments that others leave… it makes me feel like maybe, just maybe I am helping someone in some way.

I think my last post was on January 30th! I had written a little bit about this pregnancy and some of the surprises, stresses, and worries it has brought with it. We are so blessed to have this little one in our lives and we just can’t wait to meet her!

I also told about some of the unexpected events that had transpired with our new house which we still haven’t officially moved into completely yet although I might spend more time there than I do here right now.

Someone did end up coming out to fix the electrical and plumbing issues but yesterday when I went to use the dishwasher it wouldn’t work… HMMMM???!!! The girls were not thrilled when I told them this news today… lol. I told them we now have a very expensive new dish drying rack!

January was full of ups and downs with the house, an ultrasound, and some other family activities that I wrote about HERE. I stayed pretty busy and tried to get things a little bit more organized… you can read about that in this post… the time spent on getting organized has paid off in some ways as I couldn’t have seen the newest issues that were yet to come.

Our homeschool adventures have been on hold for a couple of weeks as we’ve been focusing on getting the house ready to move in and I’ve been dealing with some new pregnancy-related? health issues.

So where to begin? That’s a good question because SO MUCH has happened. February was such a blur that I can’t even believe it has come and gone already! Continue reading “Life Update: We’re Still Here!”

An Unexpected Journey

Hey guys! I hope you’ve all been doing well this week. Our week has been a bit busy with four dentist appointments and a slew of other things happening but I wanted to check in and give you all a couple of quick updates.

So last week we found out what our unexpected blessing will be and we are so excited to meet our little one! Watch this quick video to find out:

Continue reading “An Unexpected Journey”

Life Update: Crazy Days

So, I know it has been a bit since I’ve posted and I do apologize. To say that life has been crazy would be an understatement. We’ve had dentist appointments, another birthday (Ms. Caitlyn turned 13), house drama, and some baby news.

In our last life update post, we had just had Mr. Joey’s birthday and I had been working on getting some freezer meals entered into our Cozi calendar. (Yep, that’s an affiliate link and there may be a couple more scattered in the post as well.) The new meals that I’ve added to our rotation have been a big hit and many of them came from Jamerrill’s Large Family Table.

I have tweaked a couple of them to work for our family but everyone has loved them and I will soon be making them in bulk to put in the freezer. I’ve been holding off on another major Freezer Meals session because we want to get moved in so we wouldn’t be moving so much frozen food back and forth.

As far as the house goes we have had a little bit of progress:

  • the electrician has been out and finished his work
  • the electrical inspection passed… YAY!
  • the finishing crew fixed a few items but left a few to finish which we will tackle this weekend

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Now we are waiting on the skirting which is scheduled to happen tomorrow morning and then a final inspection scheduled for Monday. We are still waiting on our steps for the back door as the ones that came were the wrong size. You can see that the post falls in the center of the second door… we plan to replace these with French doors in the future and those steps won’t work!

Once we get the final inspection we should hopefully get the go-ahead to move in by Tuesday… woot-woot! We are so ready but we are dreading the move as well.

This weekend we will be installing the dryer vent which was missing and a couple of lights in the bedroom closets. Mr. Awesome is replacing the pull chain lights with a couple of ‘can lights’ which will be wired to their own light switches… hopefully, this will keep the kids from breaking the lights.

As I’m writing this we just happened to notice that the electric company is over at the house so we should have power soon!

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Over the weekend we made a trip to the St. Augustine Alligator Farm Zoological Park. This was our second time visiting the park and the second time we had been blessed with tickets to go. Thank you Ms. Dorothy and Mr. Ron! We all had a great time and the kids have been begging to go again.

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I found this cutie in the gift shop and had to bring it home with me for the baby:

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The little trip over the weekend was much needed as Friday was an extremely stressful day… I haven’t really said a lot about any of this to anyone but I’ve decided to share this with everyone as we need all the love and support that we can get! It really does take a village to raise a child and maybe our experience can help someone else on their journey.

Friday was my first appointment with the high-risk clinic and it did not go anything as expected. We were at the office for almost 5 hours! I was already nervous because we had already had a couple of issues earlier. The doctors had already been telling me the risks of having a baby at ‘my age‘ and it seemed that they kept stressing the chances of having a baby with ‘issues’.

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The ultrasound had been scheduled first and when the tech went to get the doctor I was pretty certain that she had some concerns… the longer we waited for the doctor the more it weighed on me. After 10-15 minutes I just started crying… poor Mr. Awesome didn’t have a clue and when I told him my fears he just reassured me that everything was going to be OK.

The doctor came in and did the ultrasound again getting even more pictures and measurements from different angles. She ended up telling us that the nuchal fold measured a bit thicker than what is considered normal which indicates an increased risk for chromosomal abnormalities. She also said that the baby seemed to have a ‘small window‘ in the septum of its heart but that this can and often does close up on its own.

She then sent us to talk to a genetic counselor. That was another experience in itself! When I say I was an emotional wreck it may be an understatement. He did his best to comfort us and then to explain the different conditions that they were concerned about… he seemed a bit surprised to find that we already have an adopted child with Down Syndrome and that we were familiar with some of the other conditions like Williams Syndrome.

We went over the risks again and the statistics before being offered some other testing. We have no family history of genetic disorders and the biggest factor is my age. We declined all invasive testing and opted for the NIPT screening which would be back within 5-7 days. It seemed like a long time but the time really did pass by quickly. 

Sigh… after all of this I still had to see another doctor who again went over all the risks associated with my age… I’m 42 not 82! I was put on baby aspirin and told to continue my meds for the thyroid issue which reminds me that I need to call them back and get a refill on that! I really can’t recall what else they might have said as everything was pretty much a blur at that time as I was overwhelmed, tired, and hungry!

We went to eat before finding the lab and then got my blood drawn before heading home… we did talk a little bit about it on the way home and we both agree that this baby is staying put until it is ready to meet the world! The blood test results show that we are low risk for Trisomy 13 & 18 but at a higher risk for Down Syndrome… we also found out the gender but I’m not revealing that yet! 

As of right now we are still not planning to undergo any further testing, we know that our baby is in GOD’s hands and although we may not know the reason for these trials that we are enduring at the moment we do know that HE has a plan! Does this mean I don’t worry? No. I really felt that I was on the verge of an emotional breakdown but Mr. Awesome has been right beside me and has helped me through this.

This can be really scary because there are so many unknowns. Yes, it seems that the risk for our baby to have a genetic issue is higher than many but we love this little one already. No test or procedure is going to be able to change the outcome and we will love and welcome this little one into our family.

We have to focus on the positive that our baby seems to be very healthy on the scan… it was dancing up a storm! The baby’s growth seems to be on track as well and we did see little fingers and toes… I also thought I caught a glimpse of the gender but the tech said it was too early and she didn’t give me a picture… I was right!

We can’t let the tests and everything else suck the joy out of this wonderful experience. I’ve had to ask GOD for strength on several occasions as no parent wants to think that there may be something wrong with their child. This pregnancy has already played a much larger toll on me than previous pregnancies and I am just completely exhausted most days.

I’ve had to hand this pregnancy over to HIM because it is completely out of our control… there is nothing that can change what is or what isn’t and HE will not desert us. I even told the counselor that those issues wouldn’t be the end of the world… it would just be something a little different than what we expected. 

I mean, never in a million years did expect that I would be having a baby right now. It is a blessing to even be carrying this little life inside of me and for that, I am so very thankful. GOD has indeed been so good to us in so many ways and I must TRUST him and HIS plan for this child.

This has been my go-to verse for right now:

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Please just keep our family in your thoughts and prayers and I promise to try to reveal the gender soon!

Have a blessed weekend!

 

 

 

 

Planning ahead with Cozi, a birthday in the house, and a house update

How are y’all doing?

I’ve started feeling a tad bit better this week… not having constant nausea like I previously had although it still hits and still knocks me down from time to time. I have managed to make all of our ‘normal’ breakfasts for the week… yay! The kids were happy to have French Toast and Pancakes again. I had cheated and bought quite a bit of cereal over the past few weeks… they like cereal but they missed their hot meals.

I had used up all of my freezer meals and was forced to cook this week… dinner was not always on the table at the usual time but it did get made. Sometimes dinner didn’t quite make sense as I was just pulling things out of the cabinets in the order I found them… lol. Continue reading “Planning ahead with Cozi, a birthday in the house, and a house update”