The Best Gifts Ever

As I was thinking about Christmas (who isn't! even if you are trying not to), I wanted to share with you the best gifts that I could have ever been given. . . better than this or this (and no I have not ever received those two things). This might give you a brain surge of thoughts to give to your hubby or gal this Christmas.
My mom gave me this tapestry. I very rarely cry and this teared me up!! It is so true and it hangs on my wall to remind me of how important each day and each moment is on this side of Heaven.

Underneath the tapestry is a beautiful picture of my kids. My in-laws own a sign business in Little Rock and let me just say they are amazing (yes, it's a shameless plug)! They just took a regular pic of my kids and put it on some kind of backing and everyone that comes in the house sees the picture and compliments me on it. I guess I am not only thankful for my picture of my gorgeous kids, but also my very talented and giving in-laws.
Before the days of laundry and diapers came this gift. Prince JM gave this memory box to me before we were even engaged. It was filled with chocolate kisses . . . because he had made a vow to God to not kiss a girl before he was married. I like to think of it as a symbol of how many times he wanted to kiss me and didn't. :) The interesting thing that he did, or I guess didn't do, is put my last name on it. . .just my first and middle because he knew that "someday" my last name might change. hmmm. . .I think he knew there was a spark of hope even then. . .sneaky little guy.
The best gift that I have really, really ever been given was my new life in Christ. I could go into all the details of how ratty and green I was, but we all were before Christ entered the picture. What a beautiful gift to give to your friends and family this Christmas. How about it? You don't even have to spend money on that!!! Talk to that one family member who needs Christ more than ever. Do you have a friend that is lost and desperately needing new life? Do you have a neighbor who needs to know that there is hope?Be the light of hope this season. After all, tis the reason for the Season!

To see some more gift giving ideas, check out "Don't Try this at Home."

Wow! Great Ideas!

Yesterday was such a fun day for me. Check out the comments on my post from mismatched furniture and dead flowers. Guess what I am going to be doing this weekend. I am going to be planting all sorts of flowers under that tree of death! Hopefully, I can post pictures in the spring to show you just how wonderful your suggestions were.

Also, now I am totally convinced that my house is perfect. . .well livable with the mismatched furniture. Thank you for your sweet comments about my home.

The other thing that I am excited to report is my squishy little bathroom is getting cooler!! I cannot wait to be finished so I can surprise you with pictures. I've been doing a little shopping at the antique store downtown (my Prince JM probably says, "What's new!") Blog World, you are master re-decorators and I don't even have to pay you a penny (I am sure a big thanks from hubs too)! Thanks so much!

Mismatched Furniture and Dead Flowers

Believe it or not, I have struggled finding an appropriate question for this issue of Backwards Works-for-Me Wednesday! It's not that I have everything figured out. . .I guess I just have a lot of things that do work for me!

I am deciding between two things. One would be my mismatched furniture. . .my couches match each other, but all of the wood on my entertainment center, bookshelves, curio cabinet, etc. is mismatched. Any help there? I mean some of the wood is dark, and some is light oak color. Someone who is quite decorator saavy said that oak is kind of country. If the shoe fits, huh?! If you tell me to refinish it, then please tell me how or refer me to a site cuz this girl don't know nothin' about refinishin' no furniture!

The other dilemma is that I have this tree in my front yard is perplexing me. I planted verbena and petunias under it this spring and all of my pretty flowers died. The only thing that lived was this weed/herb called yarrow. Anyway, this area is mostly shade during the summer with all of the leaves on the tree, but during the winter and early spring it does not have leaves (I guess that would be called deciduous or something, right?) Any feedback would be more than welcome. I was thinking about planting tulip bulbs for the spring as well as pansies that would be in bloom now. What do you think? I guess one thing to note is that I live in the south. I would love for all of you with a green thumb to chime in!

Have a lovely day!

Menu Plan Monday

This is my first Meal Plan Monday. Of course, I have planned a couple of weeks worth of meals before. But, this will help me a be a little more proactive at the grocery store tomorrow. (argh, I have had a cold all weekend and have not made it to the store yet.) I am sad that I do not have half and half for my coffee and I do not have the ingredients for my Monday night dinner yet. Not a great way to start the week. . .but there are definitely worse things that could happen to a gal.

Ok, here goes.

Monday - taco soup
Tuesday - Chicken Stir Fry
Wednesday - Breakfast for Dinner (pancakes, bacon, sausage and fruit)
Thursday - Monterey Chicken and Cauliflower Bake
Friday - Bratwurst/French Fries
Saturday- Buffalo Chicken Salad
Sunday - Taco Salad

Begin the week with taco and end the week with taco and you know it's going to be a great week! Next week, I am going to try to make my own spaghetti sauce like this gal with the tomatoes that I froze from the garden.

Update: After a very rough trip to the grocery store with my two kids after school and a hissy fit on the phone with my poor husband we saved over 40% on our groceries. They have this cool section in Kroger where they do not have room for the items on the shelves so they discount them to like 20 cents to a dollar. Like pasta, kid treats, mayo etc. Very cool stuff! Also, the taco soup is clearing my sinuses as we speak! Very effective medicine! :)

My Bankie!

On Thursday of this last week, my Motivated Mom's to do list said that I had to clean out the master bedroom closet. I gave Prince JM a head's up early in the week so that he would not have a panic attack when I asked him to help since a lot of it is his stuff. On Friday, we were finishing up Thursday's to do list (go figure) around the house and we got to the master bedroom closet. In rummaging through the various crap antique items, Prince JM came across Hansel's blanket from when he was born. It is the rattiest thing you have ever seen. He had and still has some type of oral fixation and his blanket proves it. He carried that thing around like Linus for at least two - three years of his life. When he was old enough to talk he named his blanket as well as various others he had collected. There was bankie #1, "White" and #2 and #3 "green and blue." Creative little guy! :) We called him in to the room to remind him of his younger years and he just stared at, "White" with big open eyes, and said "was this my blanket?" He grabbed it and swiped it across his face and held it for a long time.

Today, I was doing the dishes (on the Motivated Mom's list) and Hansel, now 8 years of age, looked at the comforter from his bed that he has now and said, "Mom, where did I get this blanket?" I replied, "It was my blanket in college and I handed it down to you for your bed." He said, "What did you call it?" I smiled and said that I did not give it a name, what would you call it? He said, "definitely green." Cute guy.