Tuesday, January 31, 2012

My Child's Voice

While being on bed rest with a concussion, my Mom, husband and a dear friend helped care for my toddler.  For 2 weeks I didn't get to spend nearly enough/as much time with her.  Instead, I got to listen to her little voice from afar. 

Our living room is ear-shot from the master bedroom, so I was blessed to hear all the cute toddler-babble.  She fed her Daddy with the plastic and wooden food from her kitchen, she let her caregiver know when she wanted a snack and exactly what she wanted to eat, she interacted with The Backyardigans, Curious George and Kipper on TV, she cried when she was in trouble, asked to "see Mommy," and played with her babies....a lot.

Then there was the baby monitor.  When our daughter was born, we chose to invest in a video monitor.  Best choice ever!  It's so worth the extra money.  (Sounds like that's a review for another post!)  Listening to her play in the mornings and after naps - and getting to watch her swaddle and feed her baby, take off her socks and clean between her toes was precious. 

Listening to her voice without seeing her face to face has brought several things to mind...

  • After a difficult birth, finally hearing that first cry.  My heart melted.  That sound is embedded in my memory.
  • I love my baby girl more than my own life.
  • Not being able to care for her or play with her has put a hole in my heart - I miss my child.
  • We can't see God, but we can hear Him speak.
  • God longs to be with us!  Do I long to be with Him?
I also began considering the sound of a voice, it is so powerful!  The mere sound of a voice can...

  • Let a nursing mom's milk down.
  • Bring a sigh of relief when you hear your lost child in a store.
  • Bring back old memories.
  • Reconcile a relationship.
  • Put fear into your heart.
  • Create the Earth.  (If you're God.  *smiles*)
  • Begin or end a fight.
  • Fill your heart with romance.
Nothing can compare to a good singing voice - Frank Sinatra, Charlotte Church, etc.  What about Garrison Keillor or other radio favorites?  Clips of verbal history, President Kennedy saying, "You have nothing to fear but fear itself, " or President Regan, "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!"

A voice is unique, just like my baby girl.  Her cute words like "harble" for "horrible" or "nakpin" for "napkin" or "bang bang" for "hammer" are also special.   I am purposing to be grateful for every sound she makes, yes, even the cries and whines!  Someday, I'll be longing for that sweet, baby talk again.  For right now though, I'm gonna enjoy it.  My child's voice.
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Sunday, January 29, 2012

Desire For Departure CD Giveaway WINNER!

I placed the names of all five  entries on pieces
of paper inside one of my favorite bowls.

Then to keep things fair, I had my
toddler daughter draw a name!

The winner's name is inside of those
precious chubby fingers! 

Congrats to REGAN!  *smiles*

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Thursday, January 26, 2012

Product Review - Camera Coats

**Don't forget, the Desire the Departure CD giveaway ends TOMORROW!**  Another fantastic giveaway in the works!!!

At the encouragement of my husband, I am sitting on our front porch.  My daughter is napping.  Unusually beautiful weather hit us today.  It's about 60 degrees with a great wind blowing through.

Well, my Camera Coat arrived in the mail yesterday!  After a good hard rain, my daughter and I scrambled into rubber boots and splashed in ever puddle and ditch we could find.  I found myself traipsing along behind my daughter while opening the newly delivered package from Camera Coats.  I carried it around the yard for a while before finally convincing myself to put it inside - away from kicks of water with the accompanying muddy splats.

Here's the one I chose...

"Love Me" Rain Slicky
 As a mom, I often find myself and my camera outside.  Maybe it's the zoo, or an outdoor playtime, but somehow my camera is frequently exposed to the elements.  (Once, we barely survived an encounter with a new Nemo sprinkler!)  I chose to spend the extra few dollars, and get a Slicky,

Truthfully, the colors are a little different than I thought.  On the Camera Coats site, the Love Me Slicky appeared to have some black in it, which I chose to go with my black and white damask padded camera strap.  (From SheyB.)  Opening the package, I was surprised to see it was GREY not black!

Then today, I took my own pictures and saw that the varying shades of grey easily come through as black.  Thus, an honest mistake.  While not as coordinating as I'd prefer, I'm not disappointed with the "Love Me" print.

You will be amazed at how small the coats are.  Somehow from their website I got the feeling these were a bit more padded.  Back at Christmas, I surprised my Mom the cotton "Green Diamond" which matched perfectly with her camera strap.  I was kinda in shock when I opened mailer to discover something so small.  (I'd purchased a deal through GroopDealz so I paid a bit less that regular price for both the Coats I bought.)

Truthfully, I like my Camera Coat!  The workmanship is great.  The design is brilliant!  I believe it will assist in lightening my burdens when out on the go.  It will also ease my mind knowing that if a spill or sudden spray from a water hose happens, my camera is protected, IF it's in it's Slicky.  *smiles*  (My daughter calls this Mommy's new camera purse.  Too cute!)

Things I would like to see from Camera Coats in the future...
  • About $10 cheaper. (As they are now.)
  • Coordinating camera straps.
  • Thicker padding choice.
  • Rain Slicky type lining.
  • A "coat" to carry an additional zoom along.
There is a Camera Coat giveaway going on at The Funky Monkey through January 30.  Good luck!
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Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Romantic Valentine's Mood Setters

Is Valentine's Day going to surprise you this year?  Isn't 2012 flying past quickly?  Maybe you don't have the time, or are lacking the creativity right now to decorate you house...again!  (Me!  Me!)  If so, it's ok!  You can still get yourself into the Valentine's Day spirit!

This year I'm trying to keep it simple and sweet.  Nothing over the top.  Nothing that takes lots of planning or prep work. 

Enjoy your family.  Celebrate the loved ones in your life.  Give an extra hug and kiss to your child and husband today, and tomorrow!  And make sure you say, "I love you!"

And jump for JOY at the unconditional, forever love that Jesus has for you!

A romantic song -

  • Johnny Mathis' Chances Are

A creative plate -

(Made with edible icing!  Too creative, How About Orange!)

A romantic movie -

  • Roman Holiday with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck

  • Love in the Afternoon with Audrey Hepburn and Cary Cooper

  • Casablanca, Starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman

  • Wives and Daughters (A personal, all-time favorite!)

A romantic dress -

A romantic hairstyle - 

A romantic chocolate cake - (Great recipe for those gluten free-ers too!)

Picture of Chocolate Cracked Earth (Flourless Chocolate Cake) Recipe

Flourless Chocolate or Cracked Earth Cake



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-inch springform pan.

Put the chocolate and butter into the top of a double boiler (or in a heatproof bowl) and heat over (but not touching) about 1 inch of simmering water until melted. Meanwhile, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar in a mixing bowl until light yellow in color. Whisk a little of the chocolate mixture into the egg yolk mixture to temper the eggs - this will keep the eggs from scrambling from the heat of the chocolate - then whisk in the rest of the chocolate mixture.

Beat the egg whites in a mixing bowl until stiff peaks form and fold into the chocolate mixture. Pour into the prepared pan and bake until the cake is set, the top starts to crack and a toothpick inserted into the cake comes out with moist crumbs clinging to it, 20 to 25 minutes. Let stand 10 minutes, then remove sides of pan.

While the cake is cooking, whip the cream until it becomes light and fluffy.

Serve at room temperature dusted with confectioners' sugar and topped with whipped cream.

*Cook's Note: Food Network Kitchens tested this recipe after this show was taped and determined that 1 stick butter is the correct amount.
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Friday, January 20, 2012

Vaccines. Are they killers?

Admitedly, there is a lot of disagreement about vaccines.  People are either strongly for or against them. 

Which ever side you take, these articles should make you think.  That's all I want you to do.  Think.  *smiles*


Preemie Dies After 9 Vacx in One Day

If you’ve ever doubted whether many pediatricians are really just drug reps wearing white coats, you won’t anymore after reading this story.

Baby Stacy and her twin sister Lesly were born one month premature by C-Section.  Stacy needed to be resuscitated after birth and she and her sister spent four days in an incubator.

Stacy’s parents, who live in Belgium, decided to follow the advice of their doctor in December 2011 and have the babies vaccinated at 8 weeks old.  Both babies were living at home by that time and were doing well.

On the day of the vaccinations, Stacy had a cold and was not feeling well.   Stacy’s parents were told not to worry and that vaccinating a sick child would be safe.  There is also a history of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and allergies in the family, but it is not clear whether the doctor even bothered to ask about this.
Shockingly, both twins received Rotarix, a shot to prevent severe gastroenteritis, Prevnar, a dual vaccination for meningitis and pneumonia, as well as Infanrix Hexa, a SIX IN ONE jab containing diptheria, tentanus, polio, pertussis, hep B, and Haemophilus type B – all in a single day!

Stacy became unwell one week after receiving these shots with a fever of 103.8F.  The parents decided to reduce the fever with Perdolan.   As Stacy continued to not do well, the parents took her to the hospital.
At the hospital, Stacy was diagnosed with a blood and chest infection but her parents were told it was not serious.   Stacy was given medication and put on a drip feed and remained in the hospital for observation.
Stacy’s father was told that the vaccines had nothing to do with Stacy’s illness and all attempts to link the two events were strongly denied.

The pediatrician told Stacy’s parents that she was fine and probably just suffering from gastroenteritis, which she was already vaccinated against.

During the night, Stacy began to suffer from very abnormal diarrhea, but the nurse refused to change Stacy when her frightened and very upset parents asked her to do so.  Even after Stacy became very restless and obviously struggling, the nurse refused to take any action.

Stacy also developed a rash and began having difficulty breathing which Stacy’s father reported to the nursing staff as the parents refused to leave her bedside.  After that, a doctor requested authorization to do a lumbar puncture and put Stacy on an antibiotic (Ampire).

The request was denied and Stacy died a short time later.

Cause of death was recorded as meningitis, again, an illness she was vaccinated against.

Stacy’s outraged parents have asked that today, January 20, 2012 be marked as a day to remember all children that have died or been injured by vaccination.   There are local events being held around the world, but if there isn’t one on your area, please say a prayer or have a moment of silence for these children, innocent victims of one of the most successful profiteering schemes in the history of the world.

Infant Vaccine Deaths Increasing Around the World

In May 2011, this blog reported on the explosive study published by the Journal of Human and Experimental Toxicology that found that countries with the highest number of recommended vaccines in the first year of life correspondingly have the highest infant mortality rates.

Vaccine deaths are indeed increasing around the world as the vaccination schedule becomes more and more packed with required shots.  The Times of India reported in May 2010 that 128 deaths had occurred in the previous year, with the number rising with each successive year.  The Times suggested a government cover-up with a doctor interviewed for the article stating that just because vaccines aren’t contaminated doesn’t mean they can’t in fact cause death.

Japan suspended the pneumococcal and Hib vaccines after 4 deaths occurred, but in the United States, 2000 related deaths occurred and yet this news received barely any media coverage whatsoever.

Possibly the most damning evidence yet that the multi-vax approach has devastating impact upon the developing child’s brain was published in the Journal of Pediatrics.   Known as the Pourcyrous study after the lead author and widely respected worldwide, the study found that abnormal inflammation and infection markers in the blood (C-reative protein or CRP) rise in 85% of infants who receive multiple vaccines and 70% of those receiving single dose jabs.

Abnormal CRP markers in infants receiving multiple vaccines are strongly associated with severe bleeding on the brain (intraventricular hemorrhage)!

Further, 16% of infants experience a cardiorespiratory event associated with the vaccination within 48 hours of immunization.  Infants experiencing such cardiorespiratory events from vaccination are also likely to experience gastroesophogeal reflux as well.

It is my hope that by sharing baby Stacy’s tragic story on her global day of remembrance that anyone reading this post will make the firm decision to refuse any and all vaccination of their baby.  Please get the facts.

Vaccination kills babies.

Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

From Gaeta Communications Website

Posted on October 31, 2011

For several years, until April of this year, I had been lecturing nationally to health professionals about the great vaccine hoax. Attending one such seminar was a board member of an association of health professionals, who invited me to speak on this subject at their national conference. I did, and had 90 minutes to present the most salient points from my 7-hour seminar. It caused quite a stir, and several clinicians thanked me for having the courage to speak the truth about this controversial subject.

Later that day, I sat on a panel of four experts to answer questions from conference attendees. Many of the questions were directed at the PhD immunologist on the panel, asking if the statements I had made in the morning presentation were true. To my surprise, the immunologist confirmed every assertion I had made.
The first was that it is pointless to administer drugs intended to stimulate antibody production to babies who are too young to produce antibodies. Infants in their first year mostly depend on generalized, non-specific immunity, including (hopefully) immunoglobulins from breast milk, to protect their young bodies from infection. They do not produce antibodies of their own until about age one. Despite this basic fact, the medical establishment insists administering a total of 19 shots, containing 24 vaccines, to infants on the 2, 4 and 6 month pediatric visits (Source: cdc.gov). Somehow, the basic facts of human physiology and development do not apply to vaccines.

You can listen to an audio file of an exchange between an attendee and the immunologist about this question. She declined to be identified in my presentations, including this post, perhaps because she knows that anyone who speaks the truth about vaccines is savaged by the medical establishment and their compliant lapdogs in the mainstream media. It is professional suicide for anyone in conventional medicine to question the unquestionable (yet unproven) assumptions about vaccines: that they are effective, safe and necessary. I have stopped lecturing publicly on this subject for the same reason, because the attacks in recent years have become particularly vicious; and because my main message in my teachings is about personal responsibility, innate wholeness and opening to the largeness of who we are, not just vaccines.

Here’s the transcript of this shocking exchange:

Q. So the science seems fairly clear that for the first year of life, probably, that the immunization is not stimulating the kind of response we expect it to stimulate.
A. True.
Q. So what’s the rationale for continuing to do that if it’s not doing what it’s supposed to be [doing]?
A. The vaccines are given at pediatric wellness visits, and the idea is that you are training the parent to bring their child in at all the pediatric wellness visits, and that it’s only the year visit that actually is truly important. But that for most parents you are not going to get them to bring their kid in if they don’t come in at two months, four months, and six months. And so it’s actually more of a training thing.
It’s interesting, I was on the phone with [?] county public health last week, with one of their vaccine nurses. She was like, ‘Oh, you’re talking about vaccines? Make sure you tell them they have to do that year shot because the first three [the 2, 4 and 6 month shots] don’t work.’ I was like, ‘Yeah, I know.’ [laughter].

Now, the person speaking here is not some kid with a blog. This is an impeccably-credentialed, pro-vaccine PhD immunologist. She knows more about the detailed intracies of human immunology than I ever will. I have great respect for her, and her decades of dedicated work in this field. And I was so glad I was sitting right next to her as she confirmed what I and others have been saying for years.

Though I am not lecturing anymore publicly on the vaccine scam, I have a recording of the seminar available, with slides, notes, articles, etc., if you are interested in more on this subject.

Let’s muster the courage to question the Unquestionable Vaccine Assumptions, and ask, “Are they effective? Are they safe? Are they necessary?” The best, most rigorous science we have says “No,” or, at least, “We don’t know,” to all three questions. And clear, independent thinking about it generally concludes that vaccines are about profit, not health. I’ve had a natural family health practice for 21 years, and have never told a parent not to vaccinate their kids. That’s a personal decision. Bottom line: ask the tough questions, find your own answers, and decide for yourself. Our future is at stake.

I will finish this post with a picture a nurse friend of mine took while at work.

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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Valentine's Deals

This deal site has become one of my all-time favorites - GroopDealz.  Their Dealz only last for about 2 days, so you'd better hurry!

GroopDealz allows "ordinary" people to sell on their site.  Ladies who have Etsy shops, or who are selling things from home are the most common sellers!  It's just great.  I have purchased birthday and Christmas gifts through them and yesterday placed a Valentine's order!

They have been offering some super-cute Valentine's deals and I thought my readers needed to know!

Like this great banner for $10...

Auntie Lolo Crafts

Or these "I love you more than...." card for $2 each... (Only a few hours left on this sale, btw.)

Tisa's Creations

Check back EVERY day, and let them know I sent you by! 

Happy shopping!
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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Are you submitting to the wrong man? 2 Articles to Consider

Would you please read the following articles and tell me what you think?  Lately, I have been doing soul searching and deep thinking.   Both of these concepts have been mulling around in my mind. 

(There's LOTS of other stuff in there too, you know, like...How to teach my toddler to go #2 in the potty now that #1 is nearly mastered?  What are we eating for supper?  Do I wash my hair during nap time or get up early tomorrow?  Floors or laundry?  Theological book or fluffy novel for a few minutes before bed?)   

In generations past, there was far less talk about “compatibility” and finding the ideal soul-mate. Today we are looking for someone who accepts us as we are and fulfills our desires, and this creates an unrealistic set of expectations that frustrates both the searchers and the searched for.

In John Tierney’s classic humor article “Picky, Picky, Picky” he tries nobly to get us to laugh at the impossible situation our culture has put us in. He recounts many of the reasons his single friends told him they had given up on their recent relationships:

“She mispronounced ‘Goethe.’”
“How could I take him seriously after seeing The Road Less Traveled on his bookshelf?”
“If she would just lose seven pounds.”
“Sure, he’s a partner, but it’s not a big firm. And he wears those short black socks.”
“Well, it started out great ... beautiful face, great body, nice smile. Everything was going fine—until she turned around.” He paused ominously and shook his head. ”... She had dirty elbows.”

In other words, some people in our culture want too much out of a marriage partner. They do not see marriage as two flawed people coming together to create a space of stability, love and consolation, a “haven in a heartless world,” as Christopher Lasch describes it. Rather, they are looking for someone who will accept them as they are, complement their abilities and fulfill their sexual and emotional desires. This will indeed require a woman who is “a novelist/astronaut with a background in fashion modeling,” and the equivalent in a man. A marriage based not on self-denial but on self-fulfillment will require a low- or no-maintenance partner who meets your needs while making almost no claims on you. Simply put—today people are asking far too much in the marriage partner.
You never marry the right person
The Bible explains why the quest for compatibility seems to be so impossible. As a pastor I have spoken to thousands of couples, some working on marriage-seeking, some working on marriage-sustaining and some working on marriage-saving. I’ve heard them say over and over, “Love shouldn’t be this hard, it should come naturally.” In response I always say something like: “Why believe that? Would someone who wants to play professional baseball say, ‘It shouldn’t be so hard to hit a fastball’? Would someone who wants to write the greatest American novel of her generation say, ‘It shouldn’t be hard to create believable characters and compelling narrative’?” The understandable retort is: “But this is not baseball or literature. This is love. Love should just come naturally if two people are compatible, if they are truly soul-mates. “

The Christian answer to this is that no two people are compatible. Duke University Ethics professor Stanley Hauerwas has famously made this point:
Destructive to marriage is the self-fulfillment ethic that assumes marriage and the family are primarily institutions of personal fulfillment, necessary for us to become "whole" and happy. The assumption is that there is someone just right for us to marry and that if we look closely enough we will find the right person. This moral assumption overlooks a crucial aspect to marriage. It fails to appreciate the fact that we always marry the wrong person.
We never know whom we marry; we just think we do. Or even if we first marry the right person, just give it a while and he or she will change. For marriage, being [the enormous thing it is] means we are not the same person after we have entered it. The primary challenge of marriage is learning how to love and care for the stranger to whom you find yourself married.
Hauerwas gives us the first reason that no two people are compatible for marriage, namely, that marriage profoundly changes us. But there is another reason. Any two people who enter into marriage are spiritually broken by sin, which among other things means to be self-centered—living life incurvatus in se. As author Denis de Rougemont said, “Why should neurotic, selfish, immature people suddenly become angels when they fall in love ... ?” That is why a good marriage is more painfully hard to achieve than athletic or artistic prowess. Raw, natural talent does not enable you to play baseball as a pro or write great literature without enduring discipline and enormous work. Why would it be easy to live lovingly and well with another human being in light of what is profoundly wrong within our human nature? Indeed, many people who have mastered athletics and art have failed miserably at marriage. So the biblical doctrine of sin explains why marriage—more than anything else that is good and important in this fallen world—is so painful and hard.
No false choices

The hard times of marriage drive us to experience more of this transforming love of God. But a good marriage will also be a place where we experience more of this kind of transforming love at a human level.

Excerpt from THE MEANING OF MARRIAGE © 2011 by Timothy Keller with Kathy Keller.  Published by Dutton, A Member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. Excerpted with permission from the publisher. All Rights Reserved.


Women, Stop Submitting to Men

Russell Moore

Dean of Theology, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

Those of us who hold to so-called “traditional gender roles” are often assumed to believe that women should submit to men. This isn’t true.

Indeed, a primary problem in our culture and in our churches isn’t that women aren’t submissive enough to men, but instead that they are far too submissive.

First of all, it just isn’t so that women are called to submit while men are not. In Scripture, every creature is called to submit, often in different ways and at different times. Children are to submit to their parents, although this is certainly a different sort of submission than that envisioned for marriage. Church members are to submit to faithful pastors (Heb. 13:17). All of us are to submit to the governing authorities (Rom. 13:1-7; 1 Pet. 2:13-17). Of course, we are all to submit, as creatures, to our God (Jas. 4:7).

And, yes, wives are called to submit to their husbands (Eph. 5:22; 1 Pet. 3:1-6). But that’s just the point. In the Bible, it is not that women, generally, are to submit to men, generally. Instead, “wives” are to submit “to your own husbands” (1 Pet. 3:1).

Too often in our culture, women and girls are pressured to submit to men, as a category. This is the reason so many women, even feminist women, are consumed with what men, in general, think of them. This is the reason a woman’s value in our society, too often, is defined in terms of sexual attractiveness and availability. Is it any wonder that so many of our girls and women are destroyed by a predatory patriarchy that demeans the dignity and glory of what it means to be a woman?

Submitting to men in general renders it impossible to submit to one’s “own husband.” Submission to one’s husband means faithfulness to him, and to him alone, which means saying “no” to other suitors.
Submission to a right authority always means a corresponding refusal to submit to a false authority. Eve’s submission to the Serpent’s word meant she refused to submit to God’s. On the other hand, Mary’s submission to God’s word about the child within her meant she refused to submit to Herod’s. God repeatedly charges his Bride, the people of Israel, with a refusal to submit to him because they have submitted to the advances of other lovers. The freedom of the gospel means, the apostle tells us, that we “do not submit again to a yoke of slavery” (Gal. 5:1).

Despite the promise of female empowerment in the present age, the sexual revolution has given us the reverse. Is it really an advance for women that the average high-school male has seen images of women sexually exploited and humiliated on the Internet? Is it really empowerment to have more and more women economically at the mercy of men who freely abandon them and their children, often with little legal recourse?
Is this really a “pro-woman” culture when restaurant chains enable men to pay to ogle women in tight T-shirts while they gobble down chicken wings? How likely is it that a woman with the attractiveness of Henry Kissinger will obtain power or celebrity status in American culture? What about the girl in your community pressured to perform oral sex on a boyfriend -- what is this but a patriarchy brutal enough for a Bronze Age warlord?

In the church it is little better. Too many of our girls and young women are tyrannized by the expectation to look a certain way, to weigh a certain amount, in order to gain the attention of “guys.”

Additionally, too many predatory men have crept in among us, all too willing to exploit young women by pretending to be “spiritual leaders” (2 Tim. 3:1-9; 2 Pet. 2). Do not be deceived: a man who will use spiritual categories for carnal purposes is a man who cannot be trusted with fidelity, with provision, with protection, with the fatherhood of children. The same is true for a man who will not guard the moral sanctity of a woman not, or not yet, his wife.

We have empowered this pagan patriarchy. Fathers assume their responsibility to daughters in this regard starts and stops in walking a bride down an aisle at the end of the process. Pastors refuse to identify and call out spiritually impostors before it’s too late. And through it all we expect our girls and women to be submissive to men in general, rather than to one man in particular.

Women, sexual and emotional purity means a refusal to submit to “men,” in order to submit to your own husband, even one whose name and face you do not yet know. Your closeness with your husband, present or future, means a distance from every man who isn’t, or who possibly might not be, him.

Your beauty is found not in external (and fleeting) youth and “attractiveness” but in the “hidden person of the heart” which “in God’s sight is very precious” (1 Pet. 3:3-4). And it will be beautiful in the sight of a man who is propelled by the Spirit of this God.

Sisters, you owe no submission to Hollywood or to Madison Avenue, or to those who listen to them. Your worth and dignity cannot be defined by them. Stop comparing yourselves to supermodels and porn stars. Stop loathing your body, or your age. Stop feeling inferior to vaporous glamor. You are beautiful.

Sisters, there is no biblical category for “boyfriend” or “lover,” and you owe such designation no submission. In fact, to be submissive to your future husband you must stand back and evaluate, with rigid scrutiny, “Is this the one who is to come, or is there another?” That requires an emotional and physical distance until there is a lifelong covenant made, until you stand before one who is your “own husband.”

Wives, submit yourselves to your husbands as unto the Lord. Yes and Amen. But, women, stop submitting to men.
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Friday, January 13, 2012

MommieJoys - First GIVEAWAY - Desire For Departure CD

Time for our first ever giveaway....*audience applause is heard*

I contacted Joshua Messick and am happy to announce that I am giving away one of his CD's - a $15 value!

Desire for Departure was released in 2008 and..."is an infusion of world, traditional, and new instrumental music featuring the hammer dulcimer. A musical tapestry of beauty, passion, and energy, it is regarded as sonically astounding." (Copied from http://www.joshuamessick.com/.)

"Joshua Messick the 2003 National Hammer Dulcimer Champion, plays fresh, original compositions and innovative adaptations of favorite melodies from every musical genre.  He has consistently delighted hundreds of audiences around the world with beautiful harmonies and enchanting arrangements.  He is promoting the hammer dulcimer to new levels of versatility and profound beauty."  (Copied from http://www.joshaumessick.com/.)

Josh's CD's are perfect for background music at your next party, to have on while you're doing those everyday chores, maybe while taking that long commute or studying for a test while working on that degree you're FINALLY getting!  *smiles*  They also make great hostess or birthday gifts.

Go to Josh's website to hear clips from all of his CD's - http://www.joshuamessick.com/.  Or listen here where I shared his free Christmas track! 

This giveaway will be open to U.S. resident's entries until Friday, January 27, 2012 - the winner will be announced on MommieJoys that weekend!  (If I have not heard from winner within a week, a new winner will be chosen.)  There are 3 ways to enter this "old school, by hand" drawing...

For (1) entry - Follow this blog and leave a comment telling me you did so!
For (1) entry - Comment on this post.
For (1) entry - Post a link about this giveaway on your blog, the share the link by commenting!

(If you leave an email address in one of your comments, it will be easier for me to contact you.  *smiles*)

Good luck.

**I was in no way compensated for this giveaway.
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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Product Review - Starbucks Glass Water Bottle

For Christmas, my Mom surprised me with this water bottle from Starbucks!  We had stopped in there a few days before to grab a seasonal fav of mine - an Eggnog Latte with white chocolate - and I saw this cuuute glass water bottle!

 Glass Water Bottle - Berry, 16 fl oz

Primarily, we used glass baby bottles and I've been on the look-out for an affordable and functional "bottle" for me.  Around the house, I use a glass milk bottle to guzzle my H2O.  *hehe* 

This Starbucks model would be great to take along to the gym.  It has an easy to grab handle so you can set it down while you lift those weights and effortlessly grab it up and move on.  (You have to push the handle back without being shy in order to open.  Then push the button and watch the lid "spring" open!)

Also, this bottle doesn't seem to be too heavy a great plus if you are going to tote it around town.  The silicone sleeve can be tricky to take on and off for washing, but the whole thing is dishwasher safe.  (From experience with those baby bottles, if you just place the bottle wearing the sleeve into the dishwasher, water tends to get trapped between the bottom of the bottle and the silicone.  It can "sour" if not dried out from time to time.)

This 16 oz. bottle gets my stamp of approval, although $16.95 still feels steep.  My silicone color is "Berry" and there is also one called "Slate."  Starbucks proudly states their bottle is made of 50% post consumer glass.  (The bottle is made in Japan while the silicone sleeve is made in China, by the way.)

What baffles me about Starbucks...at the moment...is that they are supporting the "Create Jobs for the USA" campaign.  Selling bracelets in-store and on-line to prove it!  If they are so supportive of this movement, why are most of their "gifty" products made in China?  At least, most of the ones I've seen.  If they were genuinely interested in creating USA jobs, have a "Made Exclusively in the USA" line available.  Kinda just a soap-box of mine right now.  *smiles*

Other than my current conundrum with Starbucks, nothing more can really be said, except than I'd like to see various sizes of this water bottle made available. 

Happy drinking!  (Water, that is.)

Glass Water Bottle - Berry, 16 fl oz

** I was in no way compensated for this review.
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How To Tie A Scarf

Scarves, vintage jewelry and a good denim skirt or pair of jeans (that fit!) are super hard for me to pass up at garages sales or thrift shops!
With the cool weather upon us, I am thrilled to pull out those scarves and wrap 'em 'round my neck. TipJunkie had some great ways to adorn yourself this season check it out.

She has LOTS more scarf wearin' ideas plus marvelous crafts, how-to's and style tips!  Enjoy!

What's your favorite way to wear your scarf?
Happy "chillin'!"
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Friday, January 6, 2012

Wooden Toy Reviews - Melissa and Doug, Kidkraft & Treehaus

This was my baby girl's "big" gift this Christmas...

http://www.amazon.com/Kidkraft-Retro-Kitchen-Refrigerator-Pink/dp/B001706BRI/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1325914302&sr=8-1 - Find it on Amazon here.

Of course we didn't pay the current Amazon price of $260.  My husband pulled a Sherlock Holmes - Barnes and Nobles ended up having the best price, plus a coupon!  $155 total, including shipping.  (Thanks, Babe!)  While this is more than we ever imagined paying for a TOY, it was so worth it in the end.. 

The Pottery Barn Kids version was my all-time favorite kitchen, but with a price tag of around $700 this was totally not gonna happen.  We did look at a PBK set selling on Craigslist, but I was disappointed at the quality to be quite honest.  Plus, if we bought used, it came with another child's "scratches and dents." 

At a local fancy toy store I stumbled upon a Kidkraft kitchen and compared to the PBK model I'd just seen was quite impressed!  For the price difference, there really wasn't a whole lot of quality difference.  Thus it was sealed in my mind - buy the Kidkraft retro kitchen!

My baby girl was so thrilled on Christmas morning.  It was truly one of those moments to remember forever!

Grandma helped stock the new kitchen...

http://www.amazon.com/Melissa-Doug-Birthday-Party-Cake/dp/B000090W81/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&qid=1325911944&sr=8-16 - Find on Amazon here.

Melissa and Doug's birthday party set is marvelous.  (I'll have to be honest, Grandma found this set minus the "Happy Birthday" disk at a thrift shop for $2!  It looked like NEW!)  Even if you pay the Amazon price of around $15, it's worth it.

I can't tell you how many pieces of cake my husband and I have had to eat.  And of course, blowing out candles, slicing pieces, baking in the oven, etc. 

The paint has held up so well.  The Velcro pieces have stayed stuck to the wood.  All in all, a 5 outta 5 for me!

Treehaus Wood Playtime Food Set
http://www.amazon.com/Treehaus-Wood-Playtime-Food-Set/dp/B005Q9BCDY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1325912049&sr=8-1 - Find on Amazon here.

This set is adorable.  Adorable.  The bacon, eggs, salt and pepper shakers.  Cute, cute.

Unfortunately, the Velcro pieces started coming un-glued during the first play.  Also, the paint began chipping during the first play.  Because of this, I would have a difficult time purchasing another painted set from Treehaus.  It was a huge disappointment.  Overall, a 2 outta 5.

I truely do like the style and the smooth wood.  It is also pretty realistic, which is nicer than other wooden sets I've seen.

We can glue the Velcro back, so in the end that's not a huge deal.  The chipped paint bothers me merely because it happened so quickly - my daughter plays gently, and she's only one kid!

Do YOU have any favorite wooden toys?  Any Christmas favorites for ya?

Happy Trails...

**I was in no way compensated for this review.
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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Book Reviews - A Lineage of Grace & A Place Called Blessing

As my life has become busier since the arrival of my daughter, I've found there is little to no time for reading....or that long, hot bath with scented salts and candles.  *smiles*  BUT, in December I found time to take TWO long, hot baths with scented salts and in the new house a "canned light" above the tub.  AND, I read the following books...

A Lineage of Grace:  Five Stories of Unlikely Women Who Changed Eternity
by Francine Rivers

A Lineage of Grace: Five Stories of Unlikely Women Who Changed Eternity

http://www.amazon.com/Lineage-Grace-Stories-Unlikely-Eternity/dp/0842356320/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1325621660&sr=8-1 - Find it at Amazon here.

While not typically "into" romance novels, my cousin loaned me the book by Francine Rivers so I thought to myself, "What the heck, I might as well read it." While I didn't find the literary quality of the book to be incredible, I did enjoy the read. It helped me see the Biblical stories in a modern and easy to understand way.

I appreciated the actual Scripture passages included after each story. Granted, Rivers takes liberties in imagining things which may have been, but you are aware it is in story form and with those Scriptures available to read as well,so you can easily see for yourself what is factual.

Overall, this book helped remind me that God uses HUMANS - people who make mistakes but who have a heart that seeks after Him. Because the book is in story form - I understood the awkward situations these ladies were in much better.

Since the book respectfully mentions intimate things, I would not recommend this book for younger ladies. But, they are Biblical facts.  I had forgotten how clear and descriptive the Bible could be about....s-e-x.  *smiles*

A Place Called Blessing:  Where Hurting Ends and Love Begins 
by John Trent and Annette Smith

A Place Called Blessing: Where Hurting Ends and Love Begins

http://www.amazon.com/Place-Called-Blessing-Hurting-Begins/dp/0849946182/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1325621797&sr=1-4 - Find it at Amazon here.

My Mom gave me this book for Christmas.  It was a super easy read.  Very simplistic writing style.  Truthfully, it seemed more along the lines of a Reader's Digest story than an actual book.  At the end I was left thinking, "Nice story, uhm,  that's it?  Did I miss something?"  But yes, I did enjoy the it overall.  *grins*  Perhaps if I were familiar with Trent's other book - The Blessing - I might have "caught on" a bit better.

The story is an example of the love, forgiveness and acceptance that only God can give.  The book seemed real-to-life and as though you were listening to someone give their personal testimony.

And there you have it!  My December reads.  Perhaps I will find the time to read more during January - while I fight boxes, final remodeling projects AND the never-ending concussion!  Oh wait....and then there's my beautiful toddler who so wants to be potty trained.  *BIG grin*

Grace and joy to you...
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