Saturday, February 28, 2009


at least for a while and a GIVEAWAY!



Today I had the opportunity to attend a stamp-a-stack, where you stamp a certain number of cards for a certain amount of money in a certain amount of time. I have not had the opportunity to attend one of these since I was a Stampin' Up demonstrator. I had a GREAT time and made these wonderful projects. Judah cooperated and I remained comfortable all five hours I was there! I got to see some old friends and make some new ones, which always makes for a wonderful time in my book.

Leave a comment telling me about someone you would like to send a card to and why - you will be entered to win five handmade cards (one each of the designs below). I will only leave this open till Monday since my time is short until Judah arrives, 19 days to be exact, unless the Lord brings him before that.

A photo/card holder box we made this!
Thank you card with faux chocolate bar with bite taken out

An adorable "good friend" card with scalloped edges and neat folds

Blank inside with flowers made out of actual aluminum cans

Thinking of you with embossed tree and stippled paint effect

Happy birthday with adorable glittered cupcakes

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


Recently I had a new visitor to my blog, Jill, Forever n' Ever n' Always, she has blessed me with her comments and insightful posts on her blog. She reached out and connected me with a friend of hers who was having marriage difficulties too, giving us opportunity to connect and pray for each other. I visited Jill's blog a couple of weeks ago and left a comment on a giveaway post, not even sure I knew that I was entering the giveaway. Well, I won! This is what I won…

Isn’t she beautiful? Her name is Lin Su, which I’m sure will change once Isabella gets her for her birthday, but that’s okay. Check out Pam’s blog and Etsy site, you will be blessed. Here is a post introducing some of her new dolls.

So, thank you to Jill and Pam for the opportunity to receive one of these beautiful dolls and with another little girl, I’ll be by to get another soon.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


PAGES 1 & 2

Here are photos and instructions to make eight (8) 6x6 scrapbook pages using only three (3) sheets of card stock. This time I used decorative scrapbook paper instead of stamping on white card stock - either way is fine and beautiful - I just opted for simplicity. I also used double sided card stock, so I had 16 completed scrapbook pages instead of eight when I was finished. I also doubled the instructions, so I have a complete 32 page 6x6 album for Judah's pictures when he arrives. I will just have to paste the pictures in the album and not have to think about "the day I will get to an album for him". Isabella also made one, so he will be sure to have pictures in an album somewhere between the two of us.

Notice I have been more creative lately? I may be nesting, but I also believe since the hardest part of the battle is behind me I am free once again to do some of the more creative and fun things I love to do - THANK YOU LORD!

Click here for instructions

PAGES 3 &4 PAGES 5 & 6

PAGES 7 & 8

Saturday, February 14, 2009


For Valentine’s Day I wanted to do something really different and special for the kids, so I decided to create a “restaurant”. I asked my daughter last week what she would name a restaurant if we had one and she said, “Helms Corral”, so it is!

Menus were a must, so I used Print Shop to create some complete with pictures for them to color. I took a few kids menus from a restaurant and used them for my food and drink items. I put a few crayons together with a rubber-band to hand out with the menus.

Next, the signage – the restaurant name “Helms Corral” (actually it says cor-al, it was a misspelling that I made on all our printed material and I am okay with that - freedom is AWESOME) over the doorway entering the “restaurant” and a “please wait to be seated sign” along with “daily specials” were taped to the Bella Ballerina bar.

Also, my kids love getting peanuts in a bucket at a restaurant, so that was placed on the table when I seated them. You would naturally expect peanuts at the Helms Corral, right? I let them throw the shells on the floor too!

My daughter pretended that her and her brother were babysitting the youngest and were taking her out for dinner…about 15 minutes into the peanuts, my oldest daughter said, “I haven’t even had a peanut yet because I’ve been breaking them open for Kaira.” Yeah? Welcome to my world!

My husband and I dressed in our aprons and split up the duties – I was hostess, took drink orders, cooked and served and he took dinner orders, cooked and served. We even had ribs (easy recipe below) on the menu; it is our oldest daughter’s favorite thing to see on the kids menu.

In the background George Straight was crooning whatever it was he was crooning ten years ago when we bought that CD.

For dessert we had birthday cake and ice cream, today is Annais’ birthday. We celebrated our Valentine’s Day yesterday, but were so busy just did not have time to fit the restaurant in. The evening ended perfectly with dancing to Carried Away in the kitchen. Mommy and Daddy first and then everyone took turns. The beautiful memory of tonight will be with me for a long time.

Isabella said, "This is my favorite restaurant EVER!"


Place 2.5 – 3 lbs. ribs in n crock pot and drizzle Liquid Smoke on both sides of meat. Sprinkle Lawry's season salt on meat. I usually add a few cloves of garlic and some bay leaves for extra flavor.

Cook in crock pot for approximately 5 hours on high.

"Doctor up" your favorite BBQ sauce to taste using the juices from the crock pot. We used KC Masterpiece – delicious!

Thursday, February 12, 2009


I really wanted to include these in the original post, but I was having trouble rotating the pictures, so here's what I've got.

One picture is "game instructions" - they played a hysterical game. It was a windy day and you had to hang your clothes out to dry (so you had to clothespin them), you were on the phone with the pediatrician, you were nursing your infant (breast or bottle), you had to have the baby covered because you were outside and wanted to be modest and you had to take the clothes down and put them back in the basket. This was timed, best time won. Oh, you also had three kids running around wanting attention. It was hysterical, but these moms with lots of kids did it in no time flat. Wish I had a video of that!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


A couple of weeks ago our home church had a baby shower for me. I must mention our home church is two hours (one way) from our house, so we only get there about once a month.

It was a Sunday in September when my husband and I knew this was our “home” church, but due to the pregnancy and other things we have only been there a couple of times since it is so far away. We attend a similar fellowship closer to us, but the desire of our hearts is to “be there” whatever that means in this season of our lives.

In early January they began planning my baby shower. It was blessing to be having a shower for Judah, my fourth baby. This is a fruitful church that celebrates every child as a gift and blessing from the Lord. They asked about colors and a theme, I had no idea, so I told them to surprise me. Well, they did more than that…they blew me away. Read this post about preparations for the shower(s).

At church one Sunday my sister-in-law asked if I had seen the invitation to my shower and I had not, so I went to pick one up and nearly cried. The theme was “The Lion and the Lamb” and everyone was asked to bring a Cuban or Spanish dish. My only guess is that one of the ladies read my post about our Cuban Christmas Eve dinner. These ladies got together ahead of time and made favors for my shower (and a few others – they are expecting eight babies by August).

The day of my shower I arrived to “Lion and Lamb” decorations, cake and favors. The women made the most incredible Cuban and Spanish dishes, many telling me they googled “Cuban recipes” because they had no idea what to make. Judah received many lion and lamb sleepers, outfits and blankets. The thoughtfulness that went into this could only be summed up as “exceedingly abundantly”. These ladies “showered” me and Judah with the love of the Lord in every way and detail imaginable.

I am assuming there were about 30 ladies there, many of whom I have never even met, including most of the expectant mommies. They were there to show their love and support for our family and our new arrival. God’s thoughtfulness and interest in every detail of my life continues to leave me awestruck and wanting to know, worship and love Him more.

Obviously, distance has not hindered our fellowship at this church. Never did I think my "home" church would be two hours from my house, but this is where the Lord has called us and in our obedience He has blessed us abundantly.

Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


Anything I post regarding my marriage has been read (and approved) by my husband.

For the last nine months I have been “waiting” – not only for the birth of my child, but the restoration of my marriage*. It was just before I got pregnant that the Lord told me He was getting ready to move on my behalf in my marriage, He was going to loose me from the situation that I had been pleading with Him to loose me from. I had no idea what that meant exactly, but it gave me great hope. I called a friend and told her what the Lord said to me through laughter and tears and she asked what did that mean and I said “I have no idea, but I just had to tell someone.” I also knew He did not give me a time frame, so now I was to WAIT.

The song While I’m Waiting by John Waller from the movie Fireproof became the cry of my heart (lyrics and video at the end of this post). I began to watch my husband slip away to places he had never been before. My only hope was the Lord and what He had promised me. My complete TRUST had to be in Him. Sometimes the pain of watching my husband retreat into isolation and darkness was almost unbearable, but the Lord was ALWAYS faithful.

Regardless of the situation or circumstances I had to move ahead – I had a three children and one on the way to take care of. Obedience became key as God was orchestrating His plan even in the midst of the pain. My obedience brought criticism, judgment, gossip and loss of friendships. Temporary separation from others was important as I sought to hear His voice among the noise of well-meaning, Christian friends. He began to show me that even godly counsel not in line with His will from my life and my marriage is ungodly. I will not deceive you into believing I was obedient every step of the way, I was not, I faltered frequently into fear and self-pity. Again, the Lord was faithful.

What was I to do when everything seemed to be heading in the opposite direction of what the Lord had promised? Worship. Worship. Worship. He had already given me the promise of Judah and had taught me to praise Him despite my circumstances. He had brought me to a place of trust and I knew I must remain there.

As the journey continued He covered me with peace and protection. As I let Him fight (Exodus 14:14) the battle that ensued – I took my peace. The battle seemed endless and was taking its toll on me. I continued to battle despite times of hopelessness and discouragement and I still had His words to me. I knew I must press on.

I had decisions to make - was I going to be in fear or be in peace? I chose PEACE. Was I going to nurse self-pity or serve Him? I was going to SERVE HIM no matter what.

There is so much more to this story, but I am sharing the part that goes with this song because it was such an integral part of my journey and is very much part of the testimony. Every time I heard this song I bawled because it was my hearts cry to serve the Lord despite my situation. I did not know how He was going to come through for me, but He said He would and I believed Him even in the pain.

God has fulfilled His promise to me and I will share the beauty of that soon. Enjoy this song and if you are “waiting” remember they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint (Isaiah 40:31).

*The battle did not begin nine months ago, I have honestly been waiting nine years for what the Lord has done...He only gave me the promise nine months ago.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Ephesians 6:12-13

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