Previous month:
July 2014
Next month:
September 2014

project life 2014 | week 34


Life has thrown us a ton of curveballs. Mostly exhaustion, and responsibilities in which we just don't know where to turn. I am not afraid to document life - as is. When a week is hard: long, long work hours, morning responsibilities that mean little sleep; boys short changing our meals with their lack of attention, outside work taking up alot of study time; Eagle projects that need tending; a family blowout (ok it only lasted less than an hour but still...); and on and on.

This was a hard week!


Amidst a hard week God blessed me with good weather and an evening sky to enjoy! I don't take it for granted.


Our Friday date night, Saturday serving at church (Jeff and the boys), and our Sunday morning and small group fellowship Sunday evening made the week end not so bad.

52 gratitudes | 35


Jeff has been working long hours, yes, but more than that, he has been thrust head first into a new position without a line. Thankfully, the project manager on the job he is working on as Superintendent (even though he just moved into an assistant superintendent position without experience) is personable, supports Jeff in his new position, and is encouraging. Still, learning a new job, on-the-job, without a 'trainer' can be exhausting, and is exhausting.

My hours at work haven't changed but my responsibilities at home have increased plus I've been visiting a physical therapist for persistant headaches and neck and shoulder issues so I'm exhausted and struggling with life.

Time together is scarce.

But, we make the most of it when we get those few hours on a Friday evening, sharing a meal and tons of conversation.

And I'm thankful.

september menu plan.

Septermber Meal Plan

A ton of new recipes all in the boys' hands. But, I did try and find recipes not overly hard follow.

Small Group will reap the rewards with a Blueberry Bundt Cake.



And then there is this Apple Crack Dip.


And for dinner:

Fiery Jalapeno Chicken Melts


Bacon Jam Pork Chops


New Potatoes in Garlic Cream Sauce


Cheesey Potato Smoked Sausage Casserole


One Pot Andouille Skillet Pasta

And for an Elevate Breakfast to share:

Oven Baked Denver Omelet

Amidst a busy, busy month with campouts and weekend trips were gonna' serve up some good food.

etsy window shopping | the kitchen edition


Oh my! This would make an awesome gift to my girls. Maybe our Tacos recipe. Gonna' have to think about this one.

I want to either make or buy some Peach Jalapeno Jam and serve it to small group for an appetizer - and then I'll eat all the leftovers because Jalapeno Jam with cream cheese and crackers is amazing!

I just broke one of my most favorite mugs and this one looks like the perfect replacement.

Aah! Yeah - of course it is. Bacon. Make my mouth water. I also like the one that says everything is better with Butter.

Colorful dish towels. Lovely. I just want my kitchen to be one of lots of color.

Lovely fruit dish for the counter.

do mercy...walk humbly

ok, it's not for the kitchen but I'd wear it in the kitchen too. And it's what I want for my birthday. In November.


currents | august edition


Currently-black-and-whiteplaying with stamps and distressed inks. Interesting and fun to pull them out again.

making card sets with stamps, colorful and fun.

compiling card sets and labeling them for sale - to raise money for John and Jarrod's Eagle project

reading The Girls Still Got It by Liz Curtis Higgs, The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, Raptor 6 by Ronie Kendig, and Kingdom Woman by Tony Evans

eating leftover Spicy Bundt Loaf with a Caesar Wedge Salad. I made the Spicy Bundt Loaf this past weekend, which we hadn't had in several months - so good.

watching NUMB3RS on NetFlix, and the last episodes of this seasons Rizzoli and Isles

searching for another used truck to buy for Jeffs' work truck. Yep! That means I'll be driving the Dodge Yummy Ram.

looking forward to our mini trip to Charlotte, North Carolina, Carowinds, and the Christian Music Day event - and meeting Mercy Me.

loving my physical therapy for my neck and shoulders; it's a good pain and it's working!

enjoying our date nights; especially the conversation and the new restaurants we visit like Jazz'd Tapas Bar - so good!

needing to finish some unfinished projects - and the list unfortunately is long.

navigating our way through homeschool at home and homeschool at co-op. Think it's going to be doable.

walking - again - after a couple weeks unintentional break when my FitBit bands broke. But, now I have three different bands so I shouldn't run out.

eating savory foods over sweet is the way I roll. I think it has to do with my continuously changing taste buds.

studying the book of Daniel with the boys has been so enlightening. I have a couple wise and secure sons.

scrapping Make a Page Mondays has been fun and it means I scrap at least a page a week.

getting way behind with Project Life. Need to figure something out...probably just start where I am right now.

feeling overwhelmed at times but know this is just a season in life.




a lovely sunday.



This Sunday was lovely.

Oh yes, a few - hiccups.

But, lovely nonetheless.

Sunday began early. 6:15 am.

We put a cheese bake of sharp cheddar and Monteray Jack pepper with green chillies in the oven. We took it to church to share with the Elevate volunteers. Elevate is our churches' K-5 childrens ministry. Jeff, the boys, and I serve each Sunday morning at 8:15 in various capacities. Jeff is a sheriff, I work the guest desk, and the boys serve in the technical department. A couple times a month we bring breakfast to share.

Church service was amazing. We set in the coffee bar, share a coffee or soda, open our Bibles on the table, greet friends walking by, and enjoy the service as a family around a table where we hold hands during prayer, even our sons grab our hands and join in agreement.

This service had a drama presentation associated with the sermon on serving. A group of volunteer singers performed songs written on serving to the tunes of Broadway musicals. Awesome! Then Cam's sermon on serving was very affirming. We have figured out along the way that serving is but another act of worship to our Lord.

When we got home John and Jarrod prepared the Jalapeno Poppers for our small group dinner that evening

After a brief time of family upheavel the boys spent a couple hours working on their Eagle projects. The upheavel was centered around their Eagle projects - inactivity. But, I think we might have turned a corner. I hope we have turned a corner.

Jeff worked on Blue trying to figure out what is wrong with the speedometer without any luck. He washed the new truck.

I pulled out stamps and stamped a card. It is the beginning of my next 'set' of cards that I'm adding to my collection to sell to raise funds for John and Jarrod's Eagle project. It is a simple, but super cute thank you card. Besides taking them to sell at co-op I'm not sure how else we'll be able to sell them but I'm sure we'll figure something out.

Late afternoon we headed to the Farmer's for our small group gathering and Low Country Boil. Normally, small group is in our home unless we are sharing a meal. The Farmer's have a great layout for a large group gathering. The men cooked up the Low Country Boil and the women gathered in the kitchen to begin chatting about - everything. The food and fellowship was awesome - as usual. We have such an amazing small group.

Home by 8:30 or so and we watched a couple of episodes of NUMB3RS, our present Netflix find.

A Sunday well spent brings a week of content.

And our week has begun with: the boys and I studying our Bible lessons, Beth Moore's Daniel, and listening to her next lesson to begin our week off right. I read aloud a chapter in our Lord of the Rings Literary lessons.

I bought a FitBit band to replace my torn one and I have already walked today. I finished The Girls Still Got It by Liz Curtis Higgs and have begun Raptor 6 by Ronie Kendig.

And it is 3:30 on Monday afternoon and it is only 83F degrees.

a lovely monday.

make a page monday | 4


For this page I used a Cathy Zielske template again but enlarged the area (white space plus photos) to cover more of the page and removing the off-centered approach from the original template - it made me uncomfortable. Because it was Cathy's template I'm sure there was some 'design' element with the off-centered feel of the page but I'm finding evenness works more and more for me. Using Cathys' terms, clean and simple.

I like how I am making pages recently of life and not events. Here, the boys are just washing the white truck. Later, this past weekend 'blue' got some attention too but this was for Jeff taking the vehicle now for work.


50 in my 50th year | new reads


On my 50 in my 50th year list is read 30 new books. I have about three more months to complete this project and at the rate I'm going I think this project will be a success.

For so long, except for homeschool selections for the boys I'd only been re-reading books that I own. While there is nothing wrong with re-reading selections, especially if you love the books - and the books I've been re-reading I love, I knew I needed to branch out in my selections and find some new reads.

Over the last couple of months I've only added three new titles to my read 30 new books in my 50th year.

The Giver | While I wouldn't say it was a bad book, it was very different. This was a selection on John and Jarrod's American Literature reading list that we ended up reading over the summer months in order to finish up American Literature. I understand there is a movie out right now but after reading the book I really have no desire to see the movie.

Across Five Aprils | Oh my! Just a really good Civil War impact novel, brother against brother, life during the five years of the Civil War. We loved this novel. Oh, yeah this was also on our American Literature reading list - one I didn't mind reading aloud.

Unspoken | This is one of Dee Henderson's newer titles and somewhere along the way, maybe after her sabbatical, she has lost whatever it is that she had when she wrote The O'Malley's series and the Uncommon Valor series. Very disappointed in this book. I did enjoy the 'lesson' on coin selling, but it got old fast and it really had nothing to do with where she took the plot.

I have two books on my nightstand so to speak: The Lord of the Rings by none other than J.R.R. Tolkien and The Girls Still Got It by Liz Curtis Higgs, both are fabulous by the way. I am also going to pick up Kingdom Women by Tony Evans this month and in September J.D. Robb has another book in her In Death series that is due out. So, that is four more titles before I turn 50 and I'll just need to find 3 more new books.

make a page monday | 3


For this 'make a page monday' I, again, kept it clean and simple. I struggled with the color of the text for the title and journal block and decided on white in the end. Black seemed too stark for the page. I used 'brushed' cardstock hoping to bring out the photos. I went for 'clean' lines, even on all sides and spaces. I am being challenged heavily by making pages with the clean and simple design approach.