Saturday, March 13, 2010

I've Moved

I've moved, just in case you're wondering....:)  Come on over and see my new look at  Can't wait to see you there!

Monday, March 8, 2010

MMM- Clearing the Clutter in Your Life

Last week I wrote about some of my frustrations....don't get me wrong.  I wouldn't trade my job as a stay at home mommy for all the money in the world.  I LOVE being home with my boys....but like any job, there are going to be times when frustrations rise up, and I have to reevaluate the things we are doing to see if I can key it down just a bit.  With Jacob being sick this week, we've been home more (I love days when I can just be home and not go anywhere), and I've had a bit of time to think and reevaluate and reset some things.  

It's so easy to run the rat race every single day, just scraping through the maze of events, not really "getting it" because of all the clutter taking up our lives.
This week has afforded me some real bonding time with my boys, without the added stressors of having to be somewhere, having to get this, this, and this done for school, and honestly, I don't want it to change.  Jacob and I have played many a rousing game of Battleship and Uno, and he's getting to be quite the champion.  Jaden has had many a game of monster chase the baby games, giggling and laughing the whole way.  So, you ask, how am I going to keep the peace and the tranquility that this week, albeit a hard week for Jacob, has afforded us?  I've really taken a hard look at our schedule, and I took the advice of a friend.  I asked God how He wanted me to work out our homeschool schedule.  How does He want it to be?  Then I moved and shifted some things around...for example, by Friday, we are just dead to school, so I decided to make it a fun day with just an hour of core school and the rest fun stuff like art and music and board games for thinking skills.  Jacob loves board games, so he was thrilled with this idea.

Not only with my kids' schedules, but with my own, I'm keeping my work hours to early, early mornings and naptime....possibly a little bit in the evenings, after they're in bed; it depends on what Dan is doing.  I'm also decluttering my blog.  It doesn't look like it now, I know, but I'm rebuilding my blog on Wordpress right now, making it, hopefully, a place of serenity.  It'll still have all the same subject matter, but I do want to have more homemaking articles and things, and it's going to have a very shabby chic appearance.  

This decluttering in my life has been a necessary's like when you clean out a closet, and you have a feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment afterwards.  Once that closet is cleaned out, you can keep it clutter free because there's a place for everything.  That's like life....once you clear the clutter, you have a place for the important things in your life, for the things that God deems important.  What is stopping you today?  What kind of clutter is hindering you from having the joyous walk that is available to you as a wife and mommy?  Is it spiritual clutter?  Is it physical clutter?  Is it clutter that you've been unwilling to clean out up until now? What are you missing out on because of the clutter that is blocking your path?  Get rid of it!  Rework things, and clean out!  A time to gain, And a time to lose; A time to keep, And a time to throw away- Ecclesiastes 3:6. 

For more Motivate Me Monday, visit Sarah at The Fifth Street Palace

Friday, March 5, 2010

Friday Funnies- iCarly

I don't know how I've missed iCarly before now....Jacob just started watching this show this week, with being sick and all.  It is hilarious.  It's pretty sad that Dan and I love our kids' shows more than any of the adult shows.  LOL  iCarly is definitely worth watching, though!  Anyway, I wanted to find the video of Freddie's mom going ballistic during the fencing competition, but I couldn't find it, so this will have to do.  It's still hilarious, especially if you have seen the whole episode.:)  Laugh it up!

For more Friday Funnies, visit Kim at Homesteaders Heart.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Chewy Peanut Butter Cookies

In our house, we love anything sweet that involves peanut butter, and we especially love peanut butter and chocolate put together.  Who doesn't?  I found a recipe for Peanut Butter Cookies in Grandma's recipe box, so I made them on Tuesday....they have been devoured.  I made the first couple batches just plain, but then I couldn't resist adding chocolate chips to the last couple batches.  This was a nice, moist, chewy cookie, and they were still fresh the next day.  Enjoy!
Peanut Butter Cookies

1 cup butter (My grandma has a note to cut off 2 tbsp, but I added both sticks whole.)
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, well beaten
1 cup peanut butter (I used Peter Pan Honey Peanut Butter.)
1 tsp vanilla 
1 tsp baking soda
2 1/2 cups flour
Chocolate Chips (optional)

Cream butter and sugar.  Add beaten eggs, peanut butter, and vanilla.  Sift flour and soda together, and add to mixture.  Mix well.  Roll into balls, and press with fork (My dough was too sticky to press with a fork; you might try chilling the dough, if you're not in a hurry).  Bake in pre-heated oven at 375 degrees for about 10 minutes.  Makes 4 1/2 dozen. 

Just a Little Teaser

Sometimes it's fun to just browse the internet for things; it's kinda like window shopping.  Whether you're dreaming of creating the coolest kids' room with cool kids beds, colorful accents, or great organizing space for toys....
or whether you're dreaming of having the beautiful shabby chic kitchen of your dreams....
it's just fun to browse, isn't it?  CSN Stores is one of those places that lets you browse and dream because they have just about anything you'd want or need in their 200+ stores.
I'm really impressed by their Cookware store.  In fact, this post is just a teaser to whet your appetite, so to say, because next week, because of the gracious generosity of CSN Stores, I'm going to start a new giveaway that is very exciting, especially for those of you who love to cook.  Even if you don't like to cook, this giveaway could be pretty awesome, as it's a prize that is going to allow you to throw your meal together and then leave it for however many hours you need to cook it.  I'll be giving away a Hamilton Beach Stay or Go 6 Quart Slow Cooker in Stainless Steel.
The reviews I've read of this slow cooker have been shining reviews.  Here are some of the features:
  • Clip-tight lid prevents spills
  • Large full-grip handles
  • Dishwasher safe stoneware and lid
  • Convenient lid rest
  • Party recipes included with matching name tags
  • Available in White or Stainless Steel 
So, stay tuned, as this giveaway will start up next week; I am so excited about this.  I would love to win this prize, although I do love my slow cooker that Dan bought me for Christmas a  few years ago.  You can't go wrong with a good slow cooker, especially if you lead a busy life.  Have a wonderful week!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

SYLW: Emily's Smile Boxes

It's amazing the difference that children can make in this world, and I have one special big sister to tell you about today.  Her name is Emily, and back in 2008, her parents got the devastating news that their yet-to-be-born baby boy, Jude, had a brain bleed, or a bilateral stroke.  They were told to terminate the pregnancy, that his condition could have profound effects on his life....or he could be a very healthy baby boy with no effects at all.  The first three months of his life were healthy, happy months, until one night he had a seizure, and the effects of the stroke became very real.  As his mother writes on her blog, Jude now has "clefts" on both sides of his brain, but it's worse on one side. Jude also has vision loss, Cerebral Palsy, and epilepsy.  You can actually read more of his story on Jude, The Diary of a Baby and a Stroke.  They have been able to control the seizures with medication, but they have spent so many days and nights in the hospital.  That is how Emily's Smile Boxes came about.  

Emily's Smile Boxes was actually started by Jude's big sister, Emily, after seeing many other children in the hospital.  She wanted to spread smiles and cheer to other patients who might otherwise have a hard time finding a reason to smile.  She puts together boxes filled with games, toys, crayons, inspirations, and smiley faces, and then they distribute them to local children's hospitals.  She also ships boxes if the need arises.  She has dropped off over 500 boxes. 

So, how can you help?  Emily frequently asks for young volunteers to put boxes together, in box making parties,  and to drop them off at local hospitals.  Even if you don't live in Texas, if you're out of state, they can ship you the supplies to put your own boxes together.  This is an amazing opportunity to make a difference in so many young patients' lives.  Children shouldn't have to go through the major illnesses that many of them go through, and if you can put a smile on just one child's face and make his/her day just a little brighter, the opportunity is so worth it.  Of course, you can also donate to Emily's Smile Boxes either financially, through Paypal via, or by donating small items like crayons, notepads, markers, and card games.  You can also sign Emily's Guestbook, leaving a note of encouragement to this very special girl. 

I think the most wonderful thing about Emily's story is that she has shown true compassion and love through her work, distributing Smile Boxes.  She and her parents are examples of courage and beacons of light to me, in that when they thought all hope was gone, they still did not give up, and they've seen Baby Jude as a precious blessing, through all of the trials.  Life is truly a blessing, and Jude and Emily's story is truly an inspiration to many.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Country Bob's Giveaways

Dan and I are always trying new things and adding new things to our cooking to make it even better.  When I had the opportunity to review Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce, I knew Dan was going to love it.  We had the opportunity to try it this last weekend, and I have to say, it was really good.
Country Bob's started as Country Bob Edson created a sauce that was perfect for grilling; he started out giving his sauce to friends and family and finally began to sell it in 1977, eventually becoming a full corporation in 1982.  He, along with three others, Terry Edson, Al Malekovic, and Reed Malekovic went into business together and have since become very successful.  You may have seen the sauce in stores around your area, but you may not know the legacy behind Country Bob's.  Here's what they have to say on Country Bob's website: It would be nice if we could claim responsibility for the success of the company, however, credit must be given where credit is due. Proverbs 16:3 says, "Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed." We have placed true ownership of Country Bob, Inc. in the hands of God. "Christ is our CEO" and He is an Awesome Boss!  It's so awesome to know that these guys call Christ their CEO; I don't see a lot of companies with these kinds of values nowadays, so it's very refreshing.
We received two bottles of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce, and we first tried it out in a chicken salad that I'd made up quick.  It gave a very zesty flavor to the chicken salad and really was delicious.  Next we tried the recipe for Country Bob's World's Greatest Hamburger
This hamburger has both onion soup mix and Country Bob's Sauce, and it was delicious!  Dan actually grilled the burgers, so they had not only the zesty, tangy, almost smoky flavor of the sauce, but they also had the charcoal effect.  Everything combined to truly make prize-winning burgers, at least to my tastebuds.  The sauce itself, in my opinion, is almost like a cross between a really great barbecue sauce and a steak sauce.  With the consistency of a steak sauce, it's great for adding extra flavor to your favorite dishes; however, it'd also be great for dipping your steak.  You can find even more great recipes on Country Bob's website.   If you come up with a new one, you can add it, as well. Country Bob's doesn't just sell all-purpose sauce, though; they also have Spicy All Purpose Sauce,  Barbecue Sauce, and Seasoning Salt. Country Bob's also has a new cookbook available, which is filled with recipes that use this sauce, as well as Inspiring scriptures for living an abundant life.  You can find Country Bob's on Facebook.  You can also sign up to get a bottle for free, and you'll receive a coupon good for one free bottle of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce at a grocery store near you.

Now it's your turn to enter a giveaway; in fact, for this giveaway, 2 winners will be chosen to win 2 bottles each of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce.  If you'd like the chance to win this giveaway, you can enter in one or more of the following ways. Just be sure to leave a separate comment for each way that you enter. I'll draw the 2 winners Tuesday, March 16, using  Here's how you can enter:

1. Visit Country Bob's Recipes, and let me know which one you would like to try.
2. Visit Country Bob's blog, and leave them a comment.
3. Follow my blog, or you can subscribe to my posts.
4. Follow me on Twitter; you can tweet daily about this post and gain extra entries.
5. Blog about this giveaway, being sure to link back to Real Heart Prints.
6. Vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs or Mom Blog Network (just click the buttons in sidebar).
7. Digg or Stumble this post.
8. Place my blog button somewhere on your blog.

Good luck, and have a wonderful day!

(Disclosure: I was provided 2 bottles of Country Bob's All Purpose Sauce, free of charge, by Country Bob's for the purposes of this review.)

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