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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Love At First Sight

I didn't plan it, it just happened. All it took was a little photo at the end of a siggy line...on my own email at that! One photo and I was in deep. Then I thought I lost her before I even had her.

Her name is Ismaline, and she has deep chocolate brown skin and beautiful deep brown eyes. In the beautiful white dress she was wearing and her hair done the way it was she looked like a little Shirley Temple doll. She melted my heart.

I raced to the Compassion site as quickly as I could to sponsor her, then I stalled. I thought, "do we really have the money to commit to a third little girl just now? I thought, prayed, and stalled. When I just couldn't take it anymore, I clicked "sponsor" and was heartbroken when it said someone else sponsored her in the time I was contemplating my decision.

On one hand I was happy she had a sponsor, but somehow silly as it may sound I felt like I just missed out on something really great by not being the one to sponsor her. I prayed again, thanking Him that she found that sponsor she so desperately needed, but if for some reason it didn't work out, for me to be able to sponsor her.

I couldn't stop thinking about her. I went to the site several more times and put in the information that matched hers, a girl, Haiti, four years old. Several beautiful girls came up, but none were her. There were two others that I considered, but I didn't have that same feeling as I did with her. Remember, I wasn't even looking to sponsor another child right now. It was just something about her, about her photo that made me even go look at the site.

I went and tried to watch American Idol, but still couldn't stop thinking of her, so I tried one last time. Imagine my surprise when she came up on my search!!! I don't know what happened, perhaps the potential sponsors changed their minds, but I now sponsor this amazingly beautiful little girl from a place so near and dear to my heart!

Now when I go to Haiti I have two special stops to make and two very special girls to visit.

If you've ever thought of sponsorship please let me encourage you to go to Compassion's site and just browse the photos or do a search of a country that touches your heart(may I recommend Haiti?) If you don't feel anything, no worries, I am just asking you to look. But if you do feel something for one special child you see, will you consider sponsoring him or her?

If you do, let me know, I would love to hear how one special child touched your heart like this little girl did mine. She is my third child through Compassion, but there is something so different about her than the others, and it all started with one photo, one generated on my own email going out to someone else. All I know is I am in love with this precious child and don't mind giving up what ever it is I am going to have to in order to add in the money in my budget to sponsor her and watch her grow up physically and spiritually healthy and strong.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

In A Country Far Away

I remember growing up and quite often having my mother tell me, "finish ALL of your dinner, don't you know there are children starving in Africa?" My thought was always, "well then, send them my dinner!"

See, to me children starving in Africa meant absolutely nothing. Africa was a far away place I just couldn't picture in my mind. Beyond the "starving children" comments my mother gave to me quite often, I had no other knowledge of such a place.

That's why I am so thankful for two companies/organizations. One should be pretty easy to figure out if you read here often enough and that is Compassion International. Thanks to our sponsorship of Betty in Uganda and Sarafina in Haiti, places like Africa aren't unimaginable, and starving children are a reality, they have a face and a name. Our sponsorship does as much for our family, as it does for Betty and Sarafina. Just the other day, I experienced the joy of watching my own son put compassion into action.

He had received his allowance and chose to spend half on a gift for a friend, a little on buying candy treats for his brother and nephew, then much to my surprise asked me to send the remaining amount, which was close to a third, to Haiti!

The other resource I am so thankful for is our homeschool curriculum. See, in almost all public schools and even many private schools the first 5-6 years of history or social studies is all about us, the U.S. Then there are two years of Ancients and World History. Then more about us. It is very difficult to care about others in places you know nothing about or if you have heard of them, it was about things that happened thousands of years ago. How is that relevant to a child today? Rarely, if ever does a child learn about places like Haiti and Uganda.

We use a literature based curriculum called Sonlight. For the past six years of our twelve years of homeschooling this is what we have used for the majority of our subjects. Right away as early as Kindergarten, children are exposed to other countries and cultures. They read stories of other children and learn about their lives. They learn of missionaries who have served in these faraway places. Before you know it, these places aren't so far away and the world becomes much smaller.

I myself have learned so much these past six years. As a matter of a fact I don't think it would be a stretch to say I've learned more from using this curriculum with my children than I did in all of my years of government education.

Even these past two years as we have studied American History I have learned so much. We are currently studying the Civil War and I have learned so much that I had never previously been taught. To read real books about real people(sometimes some are fictional) and their thoughts and feelings has been quite an eye opening experience. This truly has been history "the way I wish I had been taught!"

I am so thankful for the privilege to stay home and educate and disciple my own children!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

When I Want To Feel Better As A Parent

Every Friday night I feel like a much better parent than I do the rest of the week. Most of the week usually starting on Monday I start to question my parenting skills as we start our school week and slowly the kids start complaining, whining, and being less than pleasant. Their rooms tend to get a bit messy, the laundry and housework is piling up and attitudes are less than lovely.

By Friday I am overwhelmed and seriously question my parenting skills. But by about 10:00 pm I am feeling much better! I feel like I could get Mother of the Year or some other worthy award. Why? It is simple, I watch Wife Swap followed by Super Nanny!

Wow! Talk about inadequate parenting skills! Where do they find these people? Why are these people willing to air their dirty laundry for all to see? At least with Super Nanny there is some help and guidance and by the end some resolution to the problems the families face, but Wife Swap?? I can't see any reason a family would agree to put themselves through that, for what?

Where do they find these families? They are always extreme opposites, which I suppose is what makes it entertaining. Take last night for example: one family were super health freaks. Mom and Dad were bootcamp fitness experts. Their whole lives revolved around their fitness. The other family were obese junk food eaters who spent their leisure time doing demolition derby and video games. The younger child in this family was obnoxious, undisciplined and like his parents, severely overweight. He literally ruled the house and made his own rules.

Watching these mothers try to fit into their new environments and make some much needed changes provides for some amusement and lots of jaw dropping moments, but I really wonder why people watch these and why people sign up to do this show. Unlike Super Nanny there is no help offered, there is rarely any significant changes, it is just an hour of two extreme families battling it out. I feel for these kids who have to go to school following the airing and face the ridicule of their peers or the dads who have to go to work and face their co-workers who have just witnessed all the families dirty laundry.

What ever happened to the Brady's, Cleavers, or even the Huxtables? While slightly unrealistic, at least it gave us something to aspire for, today's TV families both fictional and these new "reality" ones do little more than make me feel like a much better parent and leave a yucky taste in my mouth! Is this what we're aspiring to these days? Are these families our new role models? Lord help us!!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

American Presidents


A good friend forwarded this link to me during Presidents Week and we have been using it since to memorize the presidents. Everyone should go check it out as it is pretty cool, but if you're a homeschooler studying U.S. History it is a MUST!! My nine year old has the whole song memorized and serenades us quite often with it. It is quite catchy.

http://www.whitehousehistory.org/podcasts/whha_americanpresidents.html

Here's a link to the story behind the song, pretty neat too!

http://www.whitehousehistory.org/podcasts/whha_americanpresidents_b.html

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Blame Game

These days it seems many are only too anxious to blame others for their own short-comings. Nobody wants to accept responsibility for their own problems. Many don't even want to admit they have a problem, but if they do they sure are quick to point out who is to blame, then want a quick fix in the form of some sort of modern day snake oil.

Take the mortgage crisis for instance...the banks are quick to blame the borrower, "they shouldn't have taken out more than they knew they could afford." True perhaps, but then here we have the borrower blaming the bank, " they shouldn't have let us borrow more than we could afford." Who is correct? Both are to a certain degree I am sure, but neither is willing to admit their own fault. The borrower should have bought that cute 3 bedroom they could truly afford rather than the 6 bedroom McMansion when they only have one or two children. The bank on the other hand shouldn't have been so greedy and knowingly put people at financial risk for their own financial gain. But meanwhile pointing fingers at each other isn't going to solve anything. Change will only happen when each accepts his or her own blame for the situation.

Then you have people who are quick to blame a failing economy for not being able to get a job. Sure, times are tough and you may not be able to find another position as important as what you once had, but I am sure Wal-Mart and other retailers and even fast food joints are looking to hire. But no, you wont take that job because you're above it. What is better? A measly eight bucks an hour or no bucks an hour? I happen to know a very well qualified professional who lost his well paying job and took that job at Wal-Mart. I am sure it was tough on his pride, but I have way more respect for him, than those others who refuse to work at all because they are "above working at Wal-Mart." By the way, that person who swallowed is pride and took that job, is now in upper level management making a nice paycheck!

Got problem kids? Surely it isn't your fault, they have some sort of labeled disorder and rather than do the hard discipline or practice tough love, lets label it and give them a quick fix remedy in the form of a pill right? Don't misunderstand me, I do know there are children out there with true chemical imbalances that will only respond to proper medical treatment, but the lines at the nurses office at school for kids waiting on their "meds" are longer than the lunch lines these days! Even for those true few who are suffering from a chemical imbalance, as a good online friend of mine says " it explains the behaviour, it doesn't excuse it." They still need to be held accountable for what they do!

Can't function properly as a spouse or parent because you were abused as a child? Again, your childhood could help explain why you do what you do, but it doesn't excuse it! Many of those who were abused take a different route and choose to overcome rather than excuse their behavior.

Overweight? Again, it's never any ones own personal fault is it? It is their childhood, or a problem with metabolism or medical or.....again, some of these things hold true for some, but for many of us it is simply a matter of eating more than we're burning. But rather than eat less and move more, many try to blame it away and search for a miracle pill.

I guess it's just easier to blame others or our situations for our problems rather than fess up to them and have to do the hard things to make the changes we need to. I am sure we are all guilty of it to a certain extent in one area or another of our lives, I know I am sometimes. I am just concerned that this seems to be such a growing problem in general for our society and worry about where it is going to lead us, especially as we are allowed to continue to do so. I guess like many things in life, it starts when we're young, and the remedy is to start with ourselves than our children. We can't expect our children to do what we can't ourselves, but once we are on the right track we have to teach our children to accept responsibility for their own actions and accept the difficult consequences of them. If we don't I am really worried about our society in the upcoming generations.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Finally!

Finally after months and months and lots of money trying different workout programs I think I found the winning combo for me!
These two DVD's along with going back to my veggie diet have taken off more inches and done more toning in just two weeks then all of the five mile workouts I've been doing for months!

The Jillian Michaels DVD is a winner for sure! But I warn you, it is tough! I consider myself to be in pretty good shape considering I do these five mile workouts without hardly increasing my breathing at all, or even breaking into a light sweat, and of course my years of yoga practice.

Let me tell you, five minutes into the Jillian Michaels tape I was huffing and puffing something awful and sweating like you wouldn't believe! The next day I was sure I was dying! I could hardly walk my quads were so sore! It hurt so good!! And that was all on level one!

That is one of the many things I like about this tape. It has three levels and she recommends you start on level one regardless of your level of fitness. That is wise and sound advice! But I love having three levels on one tape as my body adjusts quite quickly and I will advance to the next levels in typically a weeks time. Same with yoga, which is why I love the Brain Kest one above, it too has three levels.

One word of warning though on the Jillian Michaels one: I would HIGHLY recommend you do five or so minutes of walking in place for a warm up before hand and spend a few minutes after doing some stretching or yoga. She provides a warm up and cool down, but I found it to be not enough. I was so sore that first day. The following day I did the walking in place first and my yoga practice after and only experienced that good light soreness that let's you know you really worked out.

Each workout is 20 minutes long and includes three circuits each of 3 minutes strength training(you will need light hand weights but if you don't have any and are a beginner, you can always used canned soup or veggies!) 2 minutes cardio, and 1 minute abs(mat recommended). It is quick, but it must be effective because since adding this one into my fitness routine my once tight jeans are practically swimming on me! I refuse to weigh myself just yet, but to me regardless of what the scale would say, I judge more what my clothing or the tape measure says.

I highly recommend this workout! It's tough, but it's over before you know it and the results are worth it!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I Fought The Law And The Law Won!


Actually I didn't fight the law, my husband did, and the law didn't win, he did!!


Two times this past year my husband has wrongly been ticketed by over zealous Highway Patrol men. Once could have been a mistake on one or both sides in all fairness. My husband, sons, and a few of their friends had gone to the desert for camping and riding and took 2 or 3 vehicles and thought they only needed on pass per camp sight as they saw no notice of anything different.




The patrol men patrolling the area felt differently. They claimed it was per vehicle. For months my husband called, actually drove the long distance twice to go to court, checked the online status, did everything and some to have his day in court and argue his case. The officer never filed. Whew!




Then more recently, he was coming home from work and coming off the freeway was instantly pulled over accused of running a red light. He swears the light wasn't red. This happens to be in an area when on any given day during rush hour you will see literally six or more highway patrol men lined up and pulling over many drivers each light.



Now, I am not accusing these officers of wrongly pulling over drivers, I don't know for sure what the deal is but in my husbands case it was clearly a wrong call. So, he goes to court on his appointed day and wants to plead "not guilty." Not so easy! You have to pay the fine FIRST then wait a month or longer for your day in court. IF found innocent they will then refund your money in form of a check a later date in the mail.



I must interject here and just say I love how California operates when it comes to money issues. See, recently, even currently we are in a budget crisis. Many of us residents have been waiting for our tax refunds and were told there was no money we may get IOU's. Now do you think those who owed money were allowed to issue the state IOU's? I think not! Then with traffic fines, you pay upfront whether you are pleading innocent or guilty and only get your money back months later after proven innocent. What ever happened to innocent until proven guilty?


Well, my husband was found innocent. Or rather the officer never showed up to court, therefore my husband won by default. Did he get his check back that day? NOPE!! Of course not, we did recently get it, but I just don't understand how California continues to get away with these sorts of financial practices.



I almost told my husband to just let them keep their money as it was such a hassle for him to take the time off work, drive the hour each way to court and all for $180.00. But for him it was a matter of principle for one and also would cause our insurance rates to raise for another.



I think alot of people think like I did, that it's just not worth it to fight it even if you are right and just give up. I am pretty sure that is what the court and/or state is counting on. In the end I am glad he went and stood up for his rights. Maybe if more people did...........

Thursday, March 12, 2009

His Many Hats..

It has been about seven months since Daniels burn, and we are still going to the Dr. regularly for it. While we now only go once every three months and to the plastic surgeon rather than the burn clinic we are still far from done.


The bandages are all gone, and we only apply over the counter ointments and lotions. It is all going well. Here you can see the progress in healing from the day it happened to just ten minutes ago when I snapped the last photo.







This whole incident really has been a pretty big deal in our lives, but mostly Daniels for sure.


Before this happened he had planned on being a priest or pastor:





After this happened he wanted to be a paramedic as he was really impressed/impacted with those who tended to his wounds in route to the hospital/burn clinic:



While he still wants to be a medic, now it is in the military rather than civilian:




Today this really all came full circle for me. You see, we went on a tour of the local fire station with our homeschool group. It is always a fun tour and it is a great group of guys down there, they are always great with the kids.


One of the gentlemen was asking who was the mother of Daniel. I fessed up fearing he had done something he shouldn't of.....It turns out this was one of the fellows first to respond to the call when my son was burned! He remembered my sons face all these long months later!

(our "hero")



Pretty cool getting to meet one of my sons "heroes." I am sitting here feeling just a little bad though as here I had the perfect opportunity to thank this special person, who not only "rescued" my son in his time of need, but cared enough to remember him all this time later, and I let the opportunity slip right by for some unknown reason(other than being highly distracted and known to be a bit flaky at times!) Now that I know where to find him, I am going to be sure to send a thank you card and/or letter. He was just doing his job I am sure, but his job made a huge difference in the life of my son and his job makes him a hero in my book!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Mud Pie Anyone?

Remember making mud pie as a child? I sure do. Some of mine actually looked so yummy I wanted to eat them! OF course I never did, my mother surely wouldn't let me!

Can you imagine being so hungry that not only were you tempted to actually eat one, but your mother encouraged you? Perhaps even ate one too?

Well, in Haiti where the food crisis has gotten so bad, they may not quite be eating mud pies, but what they are eating surely isn't much better. Check it out:



Can you imagine? Dirt cookies? This is no joke, and these little children who have to eat these aren't playing house. This is their real life, their daily existence.

What can you do? First be thankful for what you do have, as I am sure no matter how little it is, it is more than these people have. Secondly, perhaps consider doing with just a little less and use the savings and sponsor a child through an organization like Compassion International.

I saw estimates today that 1/3 of the world is in a food crisis and don't have enough to eat. The fact that there are so many literally starving and dying from it, while there are so many who have such an abundance is just beyond my comprehension.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Maybe They Just Don't Know...

Since my last post I just haven't been able to stop thinking about Haiti and those vacationers on that private beach. I must say I was mighty angry, then it dawned on me, perhaps I was too hard on them. Maybe they just didn't know. Really, how many people really know what goes on in the rest of the world?

I would like to think that if people knew, they'd care. News of hunger, poverty and violence don't often make the news headlines until either Hollywood makes a movie about it or some celebrity brings awareness.

Luckily there are people who for one reason or another have become educated on the needs of others beyond the borders of the United States. While searching for more information on Haiti for my possible upcoming trip I found out that just today former President Bill Clinton made a trip to Haiti, hoping to raise awareness. While never a big fan of Clinton, he just earned a huge amount of respect from me! Further reading informed me that he has been involved and concerned for Haiti for sometime now. While I am so pleased he is trying to bring awareness, did you read about it in the news? I couldn't find it anywhere in the US news, but I did find in on the BBC news, why is that? HERE is a link to that story and some video footage.

Then as I went back to the site I linked to awhile back about Haiti, I learned more about the founder of the Mercy and Sharing Foundation. What an incredible lady with her own incredible story! Here is just one video I found of her today:


She recently has started a blog as well. It just goes to show one person CAN make a difference!

I also found others including a Haitian rapper who are doing what they can to help out. I would like to think others would do the same if only they were aware of the crisis. It seems awareness may be limited without others speaking out for Haiti though, as unless UN or US soldiers or facilities are harmed, places like Haiti just don't make the headlines. Oh sure, there is some footage after the big storms and floods, but beyond that, how often do you hear of places like Haiti unless our own government is involved or someone is wanting a pat on the back? That needs to change!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Something Is Just So Terribly Wrong With This...

I have shared numerous times here how I sponsor two great little girls through Compassion International. One from Uganda and another from Haiti. Both girls are great and bring a certain joy to my life.

Neither girl ever asks for anything more from me than prayers for them and their family. Although Sarafina, the child I sponsor from Haiti has asked one extra thing from me; that I come to Haiti to visit.

My first thought and response was, I just can't afford it, not anytime soon. Well, just out of curiosity I recently went to the Compassion site to see if any tours were scheduled soon and the cost. There is one exactly a year from now, and the cost is reasonable.

I figure if I give up a few of my "extras"(like my monsters!) I will have half the money. My husband generously has offered to help with the other half. So, as I was searching online to find out how to go about getting a passport, the website had some pretty severe warnings about Americans traveling there. It sure doesn't sound like a very safe place!

Now my curiosity was really peaked and I started searching for more information and photos of the country. I found THIS picture and I am just disgusted. PLEASE go look at it and read the authors notes. I would post it here, but it is a private work and I don't want to post it here without permission. It makes me sick. To get the full jest of it, look through some of the other photos. Here is this country which clearly has some beauty, yet most of the people are living in slums, with heaps of trash piled everywhere, no safety measures to protect those who live there, young children starving, and here are rich Americans and Europeans fat and stuffed lounging with protection on a "private" beach on this island. It is more than I can comprehend.

I am sure these people will go home to share how they visited the island of Haiti. But did they? They visited a kind of "fantasy" island, but did they visit the real Haiti? The one that the residents live and die in daily?

This makes me mad on so many different levels. One, the cruise line is probably making a killing on this private "fantasy" island, but are the residents of Haiti making any profit from this? Second, the tourists are fattening themselves up even more on the beach while stuffing their faces with the finer things of life, but are they going into the towns of Haiti and spending any of their money there where it may make a bigger difference in the life of a street vendor than it will for the already wealthy cruise line?

My husband pointed out that rather than me going to Haiti, perhaps I should spend the money to sponsor another child. I am struggling with this, as I see his point, but at the same time I feel so compelled to go, for so many different reasons, yet I wonder how much these people are struggling with feelings of guilt or questioning motives while they lay there in their fancy resort while right around the corner(literally) people are wondering if they will even have a meal for tonite?

There is just so much in this world I don't understand, and wonder if I ever will.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

They're Gone!! All Gone!!

Today we did something we've been putting off for a long time. We took Austin in for his first "real" haircut(I had given him a little trim months ago).

We had put it off because not only were his red curls so charming, but he hates to be touched, especially his hair or ears.

We were nervous about going, expecting tears and a big battle.

Here is his before:



While he didn't have tears, he was terrified of those clippers and clung to me like glue;



After they took the length off just the sides, he looked like the fellow from the 80's band Simply Red. I was half tempted to leave it like that...


After a while, he started to settle a little and let go of me, of course the Dora the Explorer playing on the TV in front of him helped a little.









The finished look, and he's one happy camper:



His uncles aren't entirely pleased as they loved his long curly hair, but of course they didn't have to try and brush is daily either.
A big day for my little guy!

Friday, March 6, 2009

Now, This is Yoga the Way I Was Taught!!!



I got impatient waiting for the Shiva Rea Yoga video I was so excited about getting. Three weeks and it still hadn't shipped. In the meanwhile I read a couple of reviews by people whom I respect and it just didn't sound like my cup of tea anyway.



So, I cancelled my order and for about half the price got Brian Kests Power Yoga.


I have to say I am quite impressed! This is Yoga how I was taught! I have dozens of Yoga DVD's and several of the poses I learned and loved aren't on any of them....until now! This program has all of them! Well, most of them, at least my favorites.



This one DVD has three different levels, and really each level just builds upon the previous. I consider myself intermediate level after practicing for 4-5 years(I lose count, it seems like I've been doing it forever!) and I was able to do level one and two easily, but still felt quite stretched when done. I watched level three in fast forward and plan on doing it tomorrow. From what I can tell, I can do all but two of the poses.



Some of the reviews on Amazon suggested this wasn't for beginners. I disagree. The level one has very good instruction and as I said, this is the Yoga I learned from the beginning. Brian Kest is VERY good about reminding us to be content where we are, that there is no perfect pose, wherever we are is perfect. I personally loved learning this way when I started, I have tried other "beginning" programs and was bored to tears, and I am not a huge fan of props. You can use your own body as a prop by just modifying where you place you hands, etc.. I personally like being challenged, and this program challenges all from the beginner to the more experienced practitioner.



I really liked this one. It is far from perfect, I have yet to find a perfect video program. One may have a soothing voice that I love, the other may have great music, one may give great verbal cues, but none as of yet have all. I do think this is going to become one of my favorites, I am actually looking forward to my practice tomorrow. It has been a long time since I've been able to say that!



It did bother or annoy me for some reason that he wore blue jeans to practice in , but that's probably just my pet peeve. I certainly couldn't imagine practicing in jeans! His explanations were quite good. The person I learned from was my Kendo master, and his English wasn't very good at the time, so he more "showed" us what to do rather than tell us. It was nice after all of these years to get an explanation of what I should be feeling in a pose, or what direction my belly or spine should be aiming. Even after all of these years, I still have more to learn!



I would give this four to four and a half stars out of five. I am reserving five for that perfect video if and when I ever find it, but this comes closer than any other for me!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Great Depression Cooking

I have been hearing about THIS lady all over the place lately, so I finally decided to check her out. She is a 90 something year old lovely lady who lived during the great depression and posts cooking videos on YouTube. The recipes are meals from her childhood during the depression. Not only are they inexpensive, but they are probably much healthier than what most families are eating these days.

I liked many of them as most don't include meat, which sits just fine with me. I plan on trying this one out soon:



Just as enjoyable as her recipes are the little stories she tells giving us tidbits of what life was really like during those times. Really makes you stop and think about how pampered we are today.

You can check out more of Clara and her recipes and stories at YouTube.

This lady is a gem! Enjoy!

Better Than Money in the Bank!


With so much uncertainty about the economy these days many are starting to look for ways to save and to become more self-sufficient. I think anytime is a great time to do those things, but now certainly seems to be as good time as any.


One thing that has always fascinated me about my Mormon friends and neighbors is their food storage systems. I have always wanted to do the same, but for one reason or another have put it off.


If you think about it a built up food storage system is better than money in the bank. How you ask? Well, what if like during the Great Depression the banks close? What good is that money going to do you? Even if you save a little under your mattress or elsewhere if things really do get that bad to where we can't get our own money from the bank, my guess is we will start seeing food shortages in the stores.


You may be able to live without electricity, gas, maybe even plumbing, but how long do you think you can make it without food or water?


The above scenarios may seem blown out of proportion, but how many are already losing their jobs? Those people probably don't even have money in the bank to begin with, but if they have food stored up they are a step ahead, they will have food to eat while they find work!


I found THIS great site recently. This lady and her family wisely stored food while things were going well for them. When things were no longer going quite so well, they literally survived on their food storage. Check it out, there is tons of information there, not only on food storage but thrifty recipes, grocery shopping tips and more! I have been excitedly been reading all morning and plan on reading more after school work is done. This is an excellent site!
Of course you can always check out the LDS site on Providential Living for more information as well.
Another interesting site I recently stumbled upon is Everyday Food Storage.
Doing a Google search will bring up lots of fun and interesting links, but please be sure to check out the first link I listed as there is a wealth of information there for the homemaker.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Always Good For a Laugh

Who needs TV or Video Games when you have a toddler in the house? Our SamuraiBoy4 is a constant source of amusement around here.



Wonder if he'll take them off for Lenten Services tonite? Wonder if anyone will care if he shows up just like this? If only I could pull off such a look and get away with it!

Could It Also Be?


Earlier I had posted on my frustrations with exercising like crazy and yet still having a weight gain. I have been pondering this for days as it is really bothering me. The more I think about it I can't help but think it is what I am eating more than my exercising. I mean I am working out two to two and a half hours a day, you'd think I could pretty much eat what ever I like.


As far as my eating, I have been careful to watch what I eat, making sure I get enough, but not too much. My only weakness or splurge is my cookie addiction, but I've even cut way down there!


So what could it be? Well, I think I've figured it out. The one thing that has changed these last several months, the only thing that has changed at all is that I have been eating some meat again. Only chicken and turkey, I haven't progressed to mammals yet.


The funny thing is I don't even like it. I complain each time I make it that it just tastes funny. The texture is funky too, not at all what I remember meat being like. I can't help but wonder if it's all the hormones and other junk they give to them to make them grow quickly. If it makes them grow quickly, I wonder what eating it does to us? Make us grow quickly? I don't know if that is the case or not, maybe I am just grasping at straws here. But as an experiment, I am quite happily giving up eating poultry again and see what happens.


Seems far fetched, but not much else has changed dietary wise, and physically I am really working out quite alot, so SOMETHING has to be able to explain this. I'll let you know what happens in the next few weeks.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

That Was a Flop!

In an attempt to save money I began making my own laundry soap awhile back. At first I considered the experiment successful, and ignored warnings of dingy whites and such as all seemed to be going well.

Slowly I noticed I had very few whites anymore, they were turning grayish...I figured I'd use a commercial detergent on those and still use my homemade formula on my colors. Then I noticed my pinks weren't quite as pink nor my blacks quite so black.

While the money savings were significant, in the end they really weren't as some clothes now need replacing. I guess nothing beats good old Tide and Clorox 2.

Thought I'd share as I didn't want to leave the impression it was still going as well as thought and lead anyone astray. Of course if anyone has had success with their own, I'd love to hear about it!