Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Blogging from A to Z- April Challenge

Lee from Tossing it Out has extended a challenge to all bloggers for the month of April.  It's called "Blog Bozzled: Blogging from A to Z April Challenge."  Basically here's what you're challenged to do:

"Can you post every day except Sundays during this month?  And to up the bar, can you blog thematically from A to Z?  If you subtract Sundays from April, you then have 26 days--one day for each letter of the alphabet.  Using this premise, you would start this Thursday April First with a topic themed on something with the letter A, then Friday the second a topic with the letter B as the theme, and so on until you finish on Friday April thirtieth with the theme based on the letter Z.  It doesn't even have to be a word--it can be a proper noun, the letter used as a symbol, or the letter itself.  The theme of the day is the letter scheduled for that day."

I admit this is going to be a tough one for me.  But in a weird way, I'm a sucker for the phrase "Here's a challenge for you..."  Just can't resist not giving it a shot.  I'll be postponing a few of my weekly posts, like "Frame-it Friday" so I can raise my odds of actually finishing this venture.

I'm gonna go ahead and bring this post to a close so I can start planning some of my 26 posts.

See you in April!

Wife and Mother and Business Partner- OH MY!

Those are the three hats that I wear simultaneously these days.  Wife to an incredible husband, mother to two precious children, and a business partner with my husband for our new home-based business.  Early on, when this scenario began, I could balance these roles pretty easily.  But I'm finding as time goes by, its getting more difficult.

Being a wife is hard.

Being a mother is hard, too.

Being a business partner with your spouse is... well, its extra hard.

Then throwing all three of them together just creates the most irritating problematic interesting mix!

For the time being, my husband and I have decided to temporarily remove my "business partner hat" so that I can refocus my energies on where they'd be better used.  These days with my children wanting nothing more than to spend time in my arms are fleeting.  They will be over much quicker than I want to admit.  

I also have an incredibly high calling of being a wife.  I confess I'm not yet able to instantaneously make the switch from arguing about camera equipment to being a lovey-dovey sweetheart when needed. Not really sure if I'll ever get there.  

So even though I began this blog with the intentions of writing about our small business journey, it's now going to take a small turn.  I'm still going to write about those things from time to time, but the overall focus will change.  More about motherhood, marriage, saving money, and who knows what else!

Hope you'll continue to journey along with me. ; )

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Giveaway Reminder!

Welcome to all my new subscribers and followers!

Just a reminder that my giveaway for the two "What's in The Bible?" DVDs ends in 24 hours.  Check out the original post and leave a comment to be entered into the drawing.

Thanks for reading!

Dear So and So...

Random letters I wish I could have written and sent this week:

Dear Target,
Why do you continue to advertise items in your sale paper but then don't stock them when I come to purchase them?  When my husband asked for the Monopoly game that was on sale for $7, the sales clerk looked at him blankly and claimed that you don't sell that game.  WHAT?!  Then why advertise them?  I'm getting more and more annoyed with you, Target. 

Dear Truck-driving Guy,
The two giant pipes sticking up on the back of your truck are NOT cool and do NOT make you more attractive.  It's actually very disgusting to see the black smoke billow out of them every time you accelerate.  Where did you get that idea and WHY did you carry it out?  Did your mom not teach you any better?  Guess not.  The smoke monster belongs on Lost, not the interstate.

Dear Spring,
I'm loving the beautiful weather you've given us lately.  But I have just one favor to ask... please decide if you are going to fully arrive or not.  Sixty-five sunny degrees on one day and then forty-five rainy degrees the next is not going well for us.  We'd like for you to give us some consistency.  No hurry to get too warm just yet, but more days like today would be just right.

This idea was borrowed from Rita at One 2 Try.

Six Word Saturday

Still Choosing Between Better and Best

There are lots of things going on in this SAHM's life.  I've noticed lately that my attention is way too divided, causing me to lose focus on the most important things.  The next several days I'll be taking an inventory in my life, making hard choices between what's good and what's best.

Link up with Cate at Show My Face for more Six Word Saturday fun!

Friday, March 26, 2010

My First Official "Friday Follow"

Last week, I was introduced to Friday Follow from a fellow blogger.  Needless to say, I was floored by the new followers and traffic I received.  With that said, I'm following in full force this week!

 Friday Follow

 Sponsored by:

These are the Friday Follow instructions from our 3 hostesses, One 2 Try, Hearts Make Families and Midday Escapades:

--Link up your blog name and URL using the MckLinky below.
Only need to add on one blog to be seen on all the blog hops.

--Grab the Friday Follow and Sponsor buttons and include both on your Friday Follow blog post.

--Follow the
Friday Follow hostesses listed in the first 3 slots.

--Follow as many other blogs on the linky as you'd like.

--Take a moment to comment on the blogs telling them you're from
Friday Follow.

--Follow back when you get a new follower through
Friday Follow.

This list is new each week. The links do not carry over. Please link up each week for new participants to find your blogs.
The list is only open to add your blog links on Fridays. It will be visible all week to visit the blogs listed.

As hostesses, we realize the time required to participate in Friday Follow. Due to the overwhelming number of entries each week, we understand everyone, including ourselves, may not be able to follow every blog. To keep it fun, follow what you can at your own pace. We appreciate your understanding and thank you for your continued participation!

Friday Follower of the Week

Congratulations to Boobies, Babies, & A Blog, this week's Friday Follower of the Week!
Each week we will randomly draw from all the links, one Friday Follower for the next week's Friday Follow, and the chosen blog will be placed in the highly coveted number 4 position on the blog hop. We love your participation and want to give back to you! You could be next!

MckLinky Blog Hop


Thursday, March 25, 2010

Theme Envy

Man, the week is flying by and I've hardly posted at all.  I confess that I've been spending my normal "blogging" time searching for a nice new blogger template.  Haven't been able to find "the one," so I continue to leave my blogspot super boring plain.  

I've also been tossing around the idea of making the switch to WordPress.  Since my blog is less than 3 months old, I figure I'd better make the switch now if I'm going to.  But I dunno... Just can't make up my mind.

In the meantime, I really want a new blogger theme/template.  Anyone have any recommendations for a site that offers great templates?

Tomorrow is "Frame-It Friday" and you'll be able to see then what other project has been keeping me busy and my fingers super-sticky.

See you then!

Monday, March 22, 2010

11 Lessons in 11 Weeks

As many of you know, I began this blog around January 1st of this year, the same time that my husband and I began a new home-based business. The weeks have been flying by, and we're about to close out our third full month of being on our own. The journey that we've been traveling has been exhilarating yet quite stressful at times. There have been moments along the way where I've had to sit quietly and ponder both where we've been and where we're headed. So, I decided to drag some stuff out of my head tonight and do what my type-A self does best... make a list.

Here are 11 things I've learned in the past 11 weeks about being self-employed:
11- By eliminating my husband's commute to his former job, we've added 1 full extra month to our year, not to mention the money saved from using less gas.

10- Insurance options are much better than I had imagined, even though we've yet to finalize a policy for our family.

9- Thus far, self-paying at physician's offices isn't half bad. It seems like they're incredibly willing to give you a break when they find out you are paying out of pocket. Almost seems like a better deal at times, especially if you have a hefty co-pay attached to your policy.

8- Living without a steady income can be downright frightful.

7- Working from home is pretty difficult with a 3 year old and 1 year old. Hoping it gets a bit easier as they continue to get older.

6- The hours in a day fly by incredibly fast when you're involved in a vocation that you love.

5- "Stuff" is just that... stuff. In our effort to run our business debt-free, there is a lot of "stuff" that we've been having to bypass or give up. New spring clothes aren't hanging in our closets and several things that are meaningful to us are currently listed on Craigslist.

4- Time management can make or break your progress each day.

3- Getting your hopes up over every client that "promises" to use your services only leads to much frustration. Truth is, the majority never follow through.

2- Lesson learned in #3 is normal and nothing to take personally.
1- The freedom to be your own boss and experience success is addictive. No turning back!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

99 Things I Ought to Have Done

This idea was taken from Jules over at Mommy Ramblings.

Since yesterday was my 32nd birthday, I've been thinking about all the things I have or haven't done in the time I've been on this earth.  I'm so thankful for the time I've been given thus far, and hope that there will be many more years ahead.  So, this was a fun activity to remember what cool opportunities I've had and also a good reminder to keep shooting for those things I've yet to do.

Copy the list, bold the ones you've done (with explanations if needed) and share with friends.

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars 
3. Played in a band- Played the flute for many years.
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower- Saw an incredible one when I was in college.  The sky was filled with shooting stars for hours.  So awesome.
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland- Been to Disneyworld a few times, but have only driven by Disneyland.
8. Climbed a mountain- Wouldn't necessarily say "climbed" with hardcore gear and such... But I did climb to the top of Mt.Vesuvius in Italy. No lie.
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo- Yep, those were my old school days.
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris- Sang for mass at Notre Dame Cathedral while I was there.
13. Watched a thunder and lightning storm- I LOVE thunderstorms when tornado warnings aren't involved.
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch- Currently in the VERY beginning stages of learning photography.
15. Adopted a child-  Would love to do this one day down the road, God willing.
16. Had food poisoning- The worst 3 days of my life. AND I was 28 weeks pregnant. HORRIBLE.
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables- Nothing better than a home-grown tomato and bacon sandwich in the summer time.
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France- It's a LOT smaller than I had imagined.
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill- I call these "mental health" days. And yes, they're necessary some times, too. 
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon- I did run a 10K but no marathons.
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice- Venice is one of my favorite cities in the world.
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise- Senior trip, baby!
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community- Here's a shout out to Lawrenceburg!
36. Taught yourself a new language- I don't think HTML counts...
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied- Working on this one... the contentment part, not necessarily the money part.
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David in person- Yep, ALL of him.
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance- About 8 months ago. Don't do it unless you HAVE to. VERY expensive!
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person- It was beautiful. 
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain- Actually got engaged in the pouring rain. : )
53. Played in the mud

54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie- My hubby has!
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business-  Here we are: BluEyEdea Media
58. Taken a martial arts class- Still have the belts to prove it!
59. Visited Russia- A gloriously shabby place. 
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies

62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten caviar-
In Russia!
72. Pieced a quilt- Saw my grandmother do it a time or two.
73. Stood in Times Square- I ♥ NYC!
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job- Long, long story...
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been a passenger on a motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car- TERRIBLE mistake.  Will never waste money by doing that again.
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Kissed a stranger at midnight on New Year’s Eve-
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Got a tattoo
94. Had a baby- Two to be exact.
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee- Does a yellow jacket count as a bee?

Now it's your turn!  Be sure to come back and leave a comment with a link to your list of "99 things."

Friday, March 19, 2010

"Frame-It Friday"

This posting of "Frame-It Friday" is a little different.  Instead of posting photographs, I've chosen to share this video of my husband's grandmother.  After 100 incredible years, she took her last breath on earth today and entered the gates of Heaven.  

Grandma Klapper, you will be greatly missed!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

So Much to Read, So Little Time

I've been reading, reading and reading this week, so not much writing has taken place for "Keeping Up Klapper."  Truth is, I've gotten sucked into the "coupon thing" and now I'm obsessed!  I had no idea how many money-saving bloggers there are out there who keep their readers posted of deals by the hour as they find them.  I've only been at this for two weeks and I've already saved a few hundred dollars... $239 to be exact.

Here are some of my favorite blogs that I currently subscribe to via Google Reader:

Jaycie does an incredible job of keeping her readers aware of "hot" coupons when they are posted, like this one from Huggies.

Grab a free pastry from Starbucks here.

Check out her great article about "stockpiling."

Just found out about this blog/site this week.  I was thrilled to find out that she posts the Publix sale flyer early!  Because as I've shared before, I ♥ Publix, too. ; )

Snag a 30% off coupon from Old Navy that can be used multiple times through Sunday.  

So, my Reader inbox stays full all day with these awesome feeds. On top of my blog-stalking sessions, I'm reading John C. Maxwell's upcoming release, Everyone Communicates, Few Connect.  The book. Is. Awesome.  Blog review coming soon.

Even now, I should be headed to bed... but not before I read a little more and clip another coupon or two.  Or ten.

Monday, March 15, 2010

"What's in the Bible?" Blog Tour and GIVEAWAY

Confession:  My children like to watch TV.  

But honestly, whose children do not?  Not many that I've ever met.  Since I know it's best to limit their viewing time, I do my best to only expose my children to shows that will affect them positively.  And yes, I have to admit-- I want to halfway enjoy the shows, too.  If your situation sounds similar to mine, then I've got a brand new DVD series from Tyndale House Publishers to recommend to your family:

Through his tumultuous adventure with his highly popular creation, Veggie Tales, God took Phil Visher on a refining journey that has presently led him to a more narrow focus with his work- "to lead kids through the Bible and bring it to life for them."  He feels the urgent call "to do something that can take our kids deeper into the Word and make their faith real."  Thus giving us his latest and greatest series, "What's in the Bible."

I recently had the opportunity to preview the first two titles in this new series, "In the Beginning" and "Let My People Go."

Both episodes were fantastic!  From a professional viewpoint, the production quality was top-notch.  The content was creative and enjoyable, blending live action, puppetry and clean animation.  A lot like "Emperor's New Groove" meets "Sesame Street."

Some of my favorite characters included "Buck Denver," "Sunday School Lady" and "Chuck Wagon."  I can't tell you how many times I literally laughed out loud at these guys.  On top of being very entertaining, the videos are incredibly educational.  They really get into some nitty-gritty, specific facts about the Bible and its history that I never knew or remembered.  (I mean, I've never heard of the word "apocryphia"... Have you?!)  I love that not a single minute of either episode was "cheesy" or contrived.  This is QUALITY work!  I'm excited to know that there is now material out there that my kids will actually ENJOY while learning about the best selling, most influential book of all time... the Holy Bible. 

The first two episodes in this series get 5 stars and 8 thumbs up from me and my family.  These DVDs would be perfect for both a family movie night or homeschooling lesson.  There's something for everyone at any age to learn and laugh about.  We can't wait for the future "What's in the Bible?" videos to be released!  

Here's a quick preview for you to enjoy:

Now for the fun part!

TWO of my readers will win a FREE copy of a "What's in the Bible?" DVD.  Here's how to enter the contest:

Simply leave me a comment after reading this post and include your name and email where you can be reached.  Comments will close on March 28, 2010 at 11:59 PM CST.  One comment per person, please (unless you do the extra credit).  US residents only.  Duplicates and comments not including the above information will be disqualified. Comments are moderated.  Please note that winners must respond within 48 hours of being announced/contacted or another winner will be drawn.

Want an extra entry?  Do any or all of the following and receive an extra entry for each one.  Be sure to leave me a separate comment for each additional entry.

*Follow me on Twitter AND tweet about the contest.  Be sure to leave a comment below with a link to your "tweet."

*Subscribe to my feed via email or reader.  Leave a comment letting me know that you've become a follower of "Keeping Up Klapper."

*Announce the "Keeping Up Klapper" giveaway on your Facebook page.  Leave me a comment with a link to your announcement.

*Blog about this giveaway.  It doesn’t have to be a separate post.  Just include a blurb about it when you blog about other giveaways.  And as always, be sure to leave a comment with the link to your post.

These dvds were provided to me at no cost by Tyndale House Publishers in order to facilitate my review. I was not required to provide a positive review, only an honest one. The viewpoints expressed in this review are my own.

Friday, March 12, 2010

"Frame-It" Friday

Our week expressed in photos...

Warm weather has finally arrived in TN.  The kiddos are so glad to get out of the house and into the dirt sunshine.  

Sand is so good to eat... thus, the sand remnants on the chin.

Sister stays super busy with her art these days.

But still manages to act a little silly, as always.

I just love these two to pieces.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

I ♥ Publix

Recently, a friend of mine convinced me that I needed to start clipping coupons.  Without even giving it a thought, I immediately began giving her excuses of why I didn't have enough time to do such a thing.  She convinced me to give it one try... So, I did.  And here I am today, completely addicted to the incredible savings and ready to share with you all!

Now, I know many people who do the "coupon thing," but I have to say... If you're not doing your shopping at Publix, then you're missing out on incredible savings.  Let me being with my total bill from this morning.  Are you ready? (drum rolllllll...)

Total spent: $76.11

Total saved with coupons and in-store specials: $86.99

SERIOUSLY!  Isn't that amazing?!  I purchased $163.10 worth of items at only $76.11.  That's averages out to OVER 50% savings on each item.  WOOT!

Okay, okay.  I know you're thinking, "How in the world did you manage that?"  So that's where my infatuation with Publix comes in.  Here's why I totally love this store:

*Publix has weekly BOGO (Buy 1, Get 1) sales of many items.  The best part is, they don't require that you purchase the second item.  So that makes the first item HALF off.

*Publix will accept competitor coupons.  I don't know of another store in my town that will do this.

*Publix will let you "stack" coupons... meaning, you can use an in-store coupon, a manufacturer's coupon, AND a competitor coupon ALL ON ONE ITEM!

*The Publix location in my town will double manufacturer's coupons up to $.50 or less.

*Publix offers a "Penny Item" on one day of each week.  It only costs a cent with a purchase over $10.00.

With all those things in mind, there is one rule that you will have to begin following for the most savings: ONLY buy items on sale for which you also have at least one coupon.  What that means for some of you is a shift in your menu planning each week.  Before I started this coupon craziness, I always had a menu planned out before I went shopping.  This is where things changed.  I now go shopping and THEN create a menu for the week.

Here are just a few of the great buys I got today with my coupons and in-store specials:

1 14.5 oz bag of Publix brand tortilla chips- $.01 (reg price, $3.19. "Penny Item.") 

1 Bag of 8 o'clock coffee- $1.49 (reg price, $4.99)

1 box of Lysol 4-in-1 wipes- $1.75 (reg price, $5.49)

1 4-pk of Yoplait YoPlus yogurt- $.25 (reg price, $2.50)

Pretty darn good, huh?!

Now, get busy finding all the coupons you can.  Be sure to grab the ones issued in your Sunday paper, plus check out these websites, as well:


I did not receive any compensation for this post.

Monday, March 8, 2010

tIme 2 gRow uP

A few weeks ago, my pastor, Josh Howerton, at The Bridge Church, has begun a series of sermons entitled, "Following Jesus in a Jacked Up Church."  Now, the name might seem a little strange, but the message of this series is extremely relevant.  We're following the Apostle Paul through the pages of 1 Corinthians as he deals with a really "jacked up" body of believers. 

Yesterday, while studying together what "spirituality" is and is not, the following verse stood out to me:   

Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual but as worldly—mere infants in Christ.  I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it.  Indeed, you are still not ready.  1 Corinthians 3:1-2

Even though I've heard this particular verse many times throughout my life, the phrase "infants in Christ" was completely illuminated to me yesterday. 

You know, it's funny how motherhood re-teaches you things you thought you already knew.  I have two small children, a 1-year-old and a 3-year-old.  In my mind, I began flipping through images and memories filed away.  I thought back to how as infants, both of my children relied totally on me to provide them with nourishment.  Had I or another adult not been there for them, they would have failed to thrive or survive.

I then thought to where they are now.  My one-year-old is beginning to feed himself; yet, he still relies on his parents to prepare his food in a way that he can maneuver, chew and digest.  My three-year-old can independently feed herself and is learning somewhat to get what she needs from the pantry or refrigerator.  Yet, left to her own immature decision-making, without guidance from her parents, she wouldn't make good decisions.  There would be popsicles for breakfast and jelly beans for dinner.  Though physically she is maturing, she's just not there mentally.

Then there I am... I'm the caretaker.  I prepare and provide age-appropriate meals for them when they need it, while also providing nourishment for myself.

So, what does any of my rambling have to do with being "infants in Christ?" 

Paul was comparing the body of believers at Corinth to babies... still relying on another leader in the faith to "feed" them spiritually.  They weren't growing up in Christ.

As an incredibly busy mother and wife these days, I feel like Paul is speaking to me.  Even though in the midst of the daily craziness I make a point to feed myself and my children their physical nourishment, my spiritual stomach is left hungry.  I find myself unintentionally waiting for another Sunday or Wednesday to roll around, where I will be "fed" by others.

Have you ever heard the phrase, "If the devil can't make you bad, he'll make you busy"?  While I agree with the gist of the saying, I can't always blame the enemy for the busyness.  I know that as Christians we can get "busy" with some really good, even great, things.  Yet, we get to a place where we're so caught up in everything (as I am now), where we begin to act like spiritual infants in Christ...  Neglecting to feed ourselves through Scripture, prayer, and just being alone to rest in the Lord's presence.  Not only should I be mature enough to feed myself, it's time that I find other "infants" around me to "feed," as I do my own biological children.

I do believe there are times in our walk with the Lord when it's okay to live like infants for short seasons, especially during circumstances of life-altering crises.  But, thankfully, I'm not there.  It's time for me to re-evaluate my schedule and routines so that my spiritual life is thriving, not kicking and screaming like a newborn baby.

Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.  Ephesians 4:14-16

Beautiful Blogger Award

My sweet friend (and former roomie), Bethany, awarded me with a "beautiful blogger award."  Go on over and check her out at The McAtees.  Bethany and her husband, Erin, are amazing, Godly people.

Here’s how it works:
1. Thank the person who nominated you for this award.

2. Copy the award and place it on your blog.

3. Link to the person who nominated you for this award.

4. Share 7 interesting things about yourself.

5. Nominate 7 bloggers.

7 Things About Me:
1. I'm a descendant of George Washington on my grandmother's side.

2. I've been out of the US 5 times and have seen 11 countries from 3 different continents.

3. Every single morning must begin with a cup of hot coffee in my hand. It's wise to give me space until I get it, too. Don't learn this the hard way. ; )

4. Dave Ramsey is one of my heroes. I'm so thankful that God led my husband and me to follow his financial advice right after we were married. We have experienced such peace and freedom from living a debt-free lifestyle.

5. I have a fear of falling... not like tripping over my feet and falling on my face. More like being in an airplane and having the whole thing fall to the ground. This is a big reason why I'm not a huge roller coaster fan. The "free fall" sensation isn't entertaining to me.

6. Reading is a favorite past time of mine. Mostly non-fiction books. I don't like magazines because of all the advertisements.

7. I really enjoy spending time on the computer and internet. I've been blessed to meet some wonderful women through specific websites who I've kept up with for years and plan to for the rest of my life. Even though I've never met them face to face, I love them! You know who you are...

Bloggers I Nominate:

1. Caryn at Rockin' Mama

2. Leslie at Rivas Reflections

3. Elizabeth at The Southern Blossoms

4. Peggy at Embracing Life

5. Mandee at I'm That Mama

6. Melody at Melody's Musings

7. Krista at Krista's Blog

Friday, March 5, 2010

"Frame-It" Friday

Our week expressed in photos...

To follow up from last Friday, our little boy is smiling again! (And still drooling.)

After a stomach bug on Monday, sister's smile is back in full force, as well.

This one is a snapshot that gives Mommy & Daddy a daily chuckle... Our daughter simply refuses to sleep without her bed piled high with "friends."  Should I begin worrying now about her future loneliness issues?!?! : )

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Just as promised... (Diaper deal cont.)

The diapers arrived!

Talk about FAST... promised that they would arrive within 48 hours and they did.  And better yet, the shipping was FREE.  After applying the $10 off discount, each diaper cost me less than 18 cents a piece.  I'm certainly pleased with this company!

If you'd like to give them a try and get $10.00 off, here's how you do it:

*Go to and sign up as a new customer.

*Place a minimum order of $49 that includes a diaper product.  

*At checkout, use this referral code to receive $10.00 off your total order: CARM3909.

It's as simple as that.  And let me explain that you do NOT have to use this code today.  It can be used at any time but only for your very first purchase.

Once you place your order, you will be given your own referral code to share with your friends.

Be sure to come back and leave me a comment about your experience with them.  I know you're going to be pleased!

This post and offer is made possible by's "Refer a Friend" program.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Everyone loves FREE!

Thanks to a freebie alert from Koupon Karen, I was just able to order 140 FREE address labels from Vistaprint.  There are so many different styles to choose from... all you have to pay for is shipping and processing!

My total order came out at $3.01!

A great deal that will end soon... so pass it along!

I did not receive compensation for this post. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

A Diaper Deal!

Calling all moms with kiddos in diapers!

I just placed an order with and received an amazing deal.  My order included an extra-large box of Pampers (252 diapers, to be exact) and a small box of wipes... all for $39.63!!!  The best part is, it's due to be delivered to my doorstep in 48 hours and the shipping was FREE!  The deal was so wonderful, I just had to pass it on.

Here's how you can receive this same bargain:

*Go to and sign up as a new customer.

*Place a minimum order of $49 that includes a diaper product.  

*At checkout, use this referral code to receive $10.00 off your total order: CARM3909.

It's as simple as that.  Be sure to come back and leave me a comment about your experience with them.  I know you're going to be pleased!

This post and offer is made possible by's "Refer a Friend" program.

Monday, March 1, 2010

The Vertical Self by Mark Sayers

Living in the age of the horizontal self, 
in which our worth is tied to what others think of us, 
we end up obsessed with ourselves.   
-Mark Sayers


Have you ever read a book that you hoped would never end?  Or how about a book that, as soon as the last page was read, you immediately turned it over and began reading it again?  This is one of those books.  The message of The Vertical Self is not only relevant for today's culture, but I'd go as far as saying it's essential.  Mark Sayers, the senior leader of Red East Church in Melbourne, Australia, has brought to our attention the pandemic of the “horizontal self” that is sweeping through our churches and communities.  This book calls Christians back to holiness and wholeness through finding our identity in Christ-- to see ourselves as God sees us, which is the “vertical self.”

The Vertical Self gets 5 out of 5 stars from me.  Even after I had only read the first few pages of this book, I was already telling people about it.  Mark Sayers’ writing style is fresh, insightful, yet simple.  The content of the book is built on hard-core Biblical truths that are often watered-down and glazed over in our age of media & celebrity.  

This book has challenged me to choose a new path-- one that moves me away from horizontal living and steers me toward my true, sense of self.  I invite you to pick up this book and come along with me in this journey.

Happy Reading!

This book was provided to me at no cost by Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their Book Review Bloggers program. I was not required to provide a positive review, only an honest one. The viewpoints expressed in this review are my own.