Monday, February 25, 2013

I'm so proud of my boys!!


Jaden participated in his first ever science fair. He had a lot of ideas some very involved...  Moms, you all know exactly what I'm thinking when your kid comes home so excited about the science fair.  I immediately started thinking about what WE were going to do. It really was a lot of fun, I didn't mind helping.  I wish I had my camera but I only had my phone, he looked so cute. I love the lab coat, he had all his pens in the pocket and notebook in hand. He is well read and loves to know facts and history. He also has a great personality with adults especially.  He can go on and on and seems much older with his vocabulary then he is.

 Here his is explaining the size of a cat brain and the hunting activity of cats.  "Did you know that if cat's hunted humans that they would kill 40% of the world's population." I had no idea how many small animals cats killed per year it is in the millions.. This is totally his sort of thing and I was really proud of him. 
Our whole family loves Tim Tebow.  Even if people say he is not the best quarterback ever, he is a wonderful roll model. Drew was learning to write letters in school last month so he decided to write Tim a letter.  I told Drew that Tim is very busy and that we probably would not hear back but we could write it anyway maybe he would see it someday.  I just love his letter, it is so cute. 
 He is a super fan!! Tim's Florida Jersey
 Today we got a postcard from Tim.  It wasn't a letter but it was nice that they send something for kids that write letters.  Maybe someday we can meet Tim Tebow, or RG111 or Andrew McCutchen, Andrew Luck...he has a long list of favorites.  
I'm so proud of my boys.  Today I told them that God has a plan for their lives that is way bigger then we even know. This year they have experienced some harder stuff that I wish they wouldn't have but it has made them realize that they are not in control of the bigger picture.  Even in hard things and the unfair God takes our Pain and makes all things right. I tried to explain to them that if their dad had not gone through not having a dad growing up that maybe he would not be the kind of daddy they have right now that loves them deeply and works so hard to provide for them.  I also explained to them that maybe I wouldn't have been a stay at home mom if it wasn't for being alone a lot growing up and missing my mom.  I once heard a pastor explain it like those eye teaser 3D pictures from the 90's. Remember how there were 100's of tiny images and then the bigger picture would jump out eventually but it took a while to see because you had to look at it from a weird angle then suddenly it seemed so clear. That is kind of how God sees it. All those little snapshots are there and then He sees the bigger picture before the rest of us do.  He uses it all to make us the people we are to serve a purpose at this time in history. I told the boys that God is going to use them in big ways and use their life experiences to help others. When I told them this on the way home from school today, their eyes got so big!! They were so excited that God was going to use them. I'm so proud of the men they are becoming and I love moments like this when we share our hearts and God is glorified. 
Romans 8:28  And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Chicken Tortilla Soup

This is one of my favorite soups ever, I actually made this up after Chili's discontinued my favorite soup Green Chicken Chili.  I just love that restaurant and was so disappointed when I went to order a year or so ago and they said it wasn't popular enough.  I have been to a few different Chili's and each time I ask, secretly hoping it was PA thing.  No such luck. I craved it so bad so around that time I made up this soup and it actually taste pretty close to theirs.  
Ingredients:
One huge can of Chicken broth
Can of Rotel
Pack of white tortillas
 cilantro ( cut up handful)
1-2 avocados
1 lime
1/2-1 pound of chicken
1 cup of minute rice
sour cream

First I cook the chicken.  I boil mine so it is soft I don't want it to taste grilled in the soup.  You can also use cooked chicken off the bone or from a rotisserie.  Once that is done, you place it in a big stock pot and put is on medium. Next I add the broth, Rotel, cilantro, and cup of dry rice.  Meanwhile I put a tablespoon of oil in my frying pan over med/high and place a broken up tortilla in the oil. You need to watch because they can burn but you want them crispy so flip often.  Once they are done( I cook about 6 of them) I put them in the soup. I let the soup continue to cook on med while I cut up a avocado.  I place a broken up avocado in the soup and squirt in juice from a lime.

 It should look like this!!  I love the vibrant color of this soup and it is healthy besides the cooking oil for the tortillas. 
 This is so easy and fun to make.  I like simple dishes with lots of taste.  If you do not like spicy foods you may not like this, it has a lot of kick to it.  I always add a glob of sour cream and it is perfect as far as spice. You can adjust this how you like, if you want more rice, meat, etc.. You can add more broth and make it less thick as well. Let me know what you think. 

Sunday, February 17, 2013

A new cabinet,lamp and rug oh my

I found this cute cabinet at a local thrift store it was $26.  These are my favorite kind of finds, the ones that are a great price because cosmetically someone had a idea that went way wrong. I love cabinets with glass, it's kind of like my sickness love of lamps, topiaries, shells and white dishes to name a few.  Very hard for me to pass on by and not find a place for stuff like this.
Once home I thought about stripping it and staining it dark wood but the paint was high gloss and thick so I just decided to use Bull eye primer over it and paint it cream.  I also painted the inside, and made a gray out of mixing a darker gray with my cream paint to make a custom color.
  Before
 I removed the gold knobs and filled in the spots with wood filler and then sanded.


 After
 I also found this floor lamp on clearance at Target, for only $20!!  I love Target especially when you find really cute stuff on the wonderful end caps! I saw this lamp months ago and wanted it but it was full price. Two weeks ago it was on clearance for $48 but I was in rush, then this week I saw it for $20 and that was a must have!!
 I love these rugs!  I bought this one for my entry and a couple smaller ones to put next to my doors.  They are real wool and great quality from Overstock.com.  I love great deals, who doesn't!!  It sure takes a while to find the deals but it is rewarding to find just what your looking for and it all comes together perfectly.   

Friday, February 15, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!!  We had a fun day yesterday, Drew went back for his first full day of school so he was happy. Both boys made shoe boxes and Lauren was sent home a huge bag since they have so many treats.  Lauren is being a silly girl with her fake smile but I had to capture her adorable outfit!! Rob bought me a spa day, I sure need that and a rose for Lauren Grace. Today we took Drew for his follow ups. His Dr. is so so nice she told me I am a over committed parent and that I need to enjoy my life as well and to stop worrying. Got to love a Dr. that cares for her patient and the family too.  She spent 40 min with us and hugged Drew and told him she wasn't going to hurt him.  She also made a point to say he is so lucky to have family support where so many kids don't. We are going to have a fun weekend and enjoy our many blessings!! 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Drew

 What a hard few weeks we have had.  Drew was diagnosed with Crohn's Disease last May.  He doesn't have a lot of typical Crohns symptoms but that is the complicated part of the disease it manifests differently in different people.  In December he was sick with a stomach virus that hit him 3 times within a week or two in between where he was normal.  It was very short lived each time but I did call his Dr. the second time and with the last time a couple weeks ago she was concerned that he had a partial blockage in his intestine.  Crohns causes your stomach to basically attack its own self for a multitude of reasons and then there are times where the disease goes into remission for even years. The flair causes the intestines to get inflamed and raw which can cause scar tissue and narrowing. Unlike the previous 24 hr bugs he had this time he was not feeling better in a day.  He was not himself at all and his stomach was gurgling and he felt really sick.  I took him to the emergency room because I just knew something was not right and after talking to his Dr. I was not taking any chances.  My mom drove over from 3 hrs. away because Rob was in TX and I needed help. We found out from his CT scan he had swelling that was causing a partial blockage. His Dr. called me the next day with the sad news that it needed to be removed surgically.  She felt that this problem would continue and steroids would not help, it basically was from scar tissue from before we even knew he had crohns.  So we met with a surgeon a couple days later and he had his surgery last Tuesday.  It was not a easy surgery by any means.  Drew had already lost weight from being sick, then he was not allowed to eat for about a week after.  He was strictly on IV fluids.  The intestines have to rest after a surgery like this and they have to wake back up.  It took about 4 days for that to happen and they finally let him eat the day before we came home. He had a NG tube in his nose when he woke up from surgery which takes stomach fluids out of the belly so he would not get sick, he also had tons of wires everywhere.  I can't say that this was easy seeing him this way.  If I am honest I felt like I died and it broke my heart in every way.  Things did get better though and the hospital does everything they can to keep the kids minds off of pain.  Everyday we would walk to the playroom and do crafts.  God love him he walked down in pain each day just to play, it took several days to see him smile.  He had a dog come visit him actually several and that made him smile.  We spent eight days in the hospital and Rob went back and forth to help with the other kids.  I really missed our normal life and Jaden and Lauren.  I have had lots of emotions, and none of it seems fair but I do know that things could be worse. He is much better now and he is happy. Happiness and the love of many friends and family is a gift that many people never acquire.  There is a part of a mothers heart that just breaks when you face these kind of issues.  There is nothing we can do but have faith in God to see us through. We have been shown love from near and far and I could not ask for a better school for my kids.  Drew has now become a celebrity at the school(: He is enjoying that!!  He received 400 get well cards, gifts and attention from so many people. It is amazing how many people really do care!! This is not going to define him or our family it is just the bad we take with the good.  I somehow thought in my magical mommy way that my kids could have this perfect life, but when you face reality it kind of hits you.  I have to remind myself that God never said it would be easy and all of us will have struggles they just are different kinds of problems for each of us. The times that are the hardest is when I have to explain to him why this happened and why we have to get shots, iv's etc..We also talk about the kids that are in far worse shape, and how God uses all our trials to make us more like Him. I do ask for my friends and family to continue to please pray for my son he is a amazing, funny, talented, smart kid.  Oh and he goes by DrewB3 now. In total Drew fashion he loves  RG111!! My mom nicknamed him Drew Bear when he was a baby and I always called him DrewB as a nickname so now we have DREWB 111. His sense of humor is lifesaving!! We are going to do the best we can with this and pray that medicines work and that he can have many years without pain, and for healing and a cure!!
Thank  you all!!
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