Monthly Archives: November 2013

meet me, the hypocrite.


This week has been devoted to Mary & Martha and I have loved having friends in my home—and last night—sharing in the home of a sweet girl I met a couple of months ago.  Sharing with her friends–most of whom have little kiddos (they were part of a MOPS group).  Walking into her home and seeing her fridge covered with colorful ABC magnets, toy bins tucked away nicely to make room for her friends, a family and weather calendar above her kitchen table, and pictures of four sweet children.  She was in the kitchen when I arrived, getting all of her goodies arranged to serve her guests, whipping up homemade whipped cream, and brewing coffee.  Each guest as they arrived, made their way straight into the kitchen.  Some bringing goodies of their own to share.  And once everyone got there—no more bustling around in the kitchen.  Elizabeth (the hostess) was there in the midst of and completely attentive to her guests.  It was truly a Mary & Martha moment right before my very eyes.  Elizabeth was living in the &.

I was reflecting on the things that I share at a gathering.  Mostly, testimonies of products and how they have blessed others.  Also, my own particular products that I love—because, honestly–you’ve got to love what you’re selling to sell.  Or at least I do.  (That’s why Steve never hired me on as a John Deere salesman–I’d never sell a thing—or was it that he couldn’t handle working alongside me???)

I have talked about one of the writer’s for Dayspring, Ann Voskamp, made famous for her book One Thousand Gifts.  Click (HERE) to read all about her.  She is a beautiful writer.  I know that. I have seen and read and been captivated by her many quotes.  This one in particular during this month of thankfulness…

What if the question around holiday tables wasn’t—What are you so grateful for?  But rather–How are you changing the world because you are so grateful?”–Ann Voskamp

My point is this.  She’s awesome.  I love her writing.  I love her depth and wisdom.  And I have been selling her Family Gratitude Journal through Mary & Martha for the last year and a half and talking about how wonderful it is to use in your family.


(photo from Erica Stidham showing our awesome wooden placemat as well!)

The thing is?  I had never used it.  Until I saw a mentor Mary & Martha leader of mine post about how life changing it has been for her.  And I was convicted and flooded with emotion that how can I stand up at gatherings and pump up this journal when I am not even using it myself?  Hypocrite.

Well, guess what?  I am now using it.  And it is amazing.  Amazing to change the way you think.  In this season as we begin to make list after list–and we ask for list after list from kiddos and others we are going to be gifting, this brings so much perspective on gifts.  The ultimate gift-giver himself, who died to save us.  What are we thankful for?

As the kids, Steve, and I were going through and listing some things on the way to the airport, things just rolled off of our tongues.  How wonderful to gain perspective daily, that even waking up each morning is a gift for the day.  The sunrise, the beautiful fall temps allowing our kids to play outside without jackets in November, the coffee brewing on early mornings, and meals around the table in between sports seasons.

I am thankful that someone was using their journal not just talking about how wonderful it would be to use it.  And gave me my own personal reason to sell something I love—not just something I think others will love…

live in this moment.


We are MORE than fortunate for Steve’s job. There is not a day that goes by that I am not thankful. Sometimes his job takes him away. But it is very few and far between. So infrequent that I hate to ever bring it up, complain, or otherwise.

That being said, we don’t do well at our house without him home.

A heartbreaking moment yesterday as we dropped Steve off at the airport. Landon just broke down crying. Actually, somewhat in characteristic of him. Oh my goodness, it was all I could do to sweep him up in my arms and hold my little 9 year old. Ugh.

As we finished up our day, he just wanted to cling to my side. Begged to sleep in my bed, and climbed up in a chair with me. That hasn’t happened for a long time.

I was talking with my friend about the day and the emotional toll it took on Landon. And what she said was profound, yet obvious…

This may never happen again. Landon may never crawl up in my lap, lay his head on my shoulder, and want comfort from me in this way. This may be the last time he begs to sleep as close as he can to me and snuggle talking to me about missing his Dad. This may be the last time he clings to me needing a hug from his Mom.

Remembering the lasts. Oh man I hope this isn’t the last, yet. He still needs his mom when he misses his dad. He misses his dad and he needs his mom. Don’t let me forget. Ever, ever, ever. Some day Steve will travel and he won’t care. Some day I’ll give him a hug and it will be a half one armed hug to comfort and suffice me.

something about a daddy.



Back when things were so much simpler and all was well in my world, as long as I could be with my daddy. Now, I would say I look more pleased to be with him, than he does to be with me…don’t you think?

Thankful for a high school musical that brings family together. And thankful for a grandma that brought me a peek into a sweet time of my life. Where memories escape me—but where a picture shows happiness. (And maybe the irritation and frustrations of being my parent!)





kids rock—a Christmas Bundle just for them!


For all the precious, precious children out there…I would love to send one of these to each of you.  Because God did make just ONE of you.  You are special, you are loved and adored and there is NO one else like you.

From now until Thanksgiving, I am offering a sweet deal for all of the children in your life—because, I am a bit partial to children–just a tad.  And I want every child on this earth to hear the message of how special they are.  How unique they are and how much God loves them.

For $59, you will receive for the special children in your life…

God Made Just One (book)

Gabriel the Penguin (big, stuffed, fluffy soft character in the book)

The Advent Puzzle Tree

This deal is good for you with FREE SHIPPING until Thanksgiving day!!! 

This would make an amazing gift for the families in your life.  ***Orders must be placed through me to get this deal!!!!!  So comment here, email me: OR comment on facebook and I will get with you on details.  I don’t want you to miss the chance to bless the kiddos in your lives with this awesome Kids Christmas Bundle!!!


Apple Symphony Brickle Dip


This dip is so addictive! Oh my. A good friend of mine has been making it this fall season and then another friend started making it. And then? I tried it. And now I’m making it nonstop.

I changed it up a big because I was too lazy to call and get the recipe. How pathetic is that? But this worked well with what I had on hand. Basically after getting the original recipe, I decreased the amount of sugar, and added a secret ingredient…my all time favorite Hershey’s Symphony Bar. Yummo.  Hence the name I am calling this dip…

Apple Symphony Brickle Dip

2 (8 oz) packages of cream cheese

1 large Hershey’s Symphony Bar with almonds and toffee, chopped

1 bag of baking Heath bits

3/4 cup brown sugar

1 tsp. vanilla

Cream sugar, cream cheese, and vanilla together until smooth.

Add Heath bits and candy bar until mixed.

Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Cut up HoneyCrisp apples (the best!!) and serve with dip

You can also dip just about anything with it and it will be good.

I am not kidding.

You guessed it—this recipe is making its way to Tonya’s Weekend Potluck!!

martha did this, mary did that…


I am so looking forward to spending time with friends today and this evening.  Time.  Something we don’t have a lot of.  But, something we are called to give–and I can’t wait to give it to YOU!

Please stop in today for lunch.  Or this evening for sips and sweets—I’ve got THE best hot chocolate ready to be made and raffle tickets are screaming to be given.  WOO HOO!!!

Martha showed up to make the soups. But Mary made the rolls.  Want the easiest, yummiest recipe ever?  Thank  you very much, Pinterest.  Check it out HERE.

Martha said “No, Steve…saving for the girls.” And Mary said “it’s ok, go ahead and eat a roll, honey”.

So I guess, the first 14 people will get rolls. Martha is upset about it. And Mary will give you $$ to stop at Modd’s on your way home and love you while you’re here.

potato drop!


Know what’s happening over here?  Potatoes, that’s what!!



They have taken over our kitchen…quite literally. As you can see, they joined us around the bar for supper last night.

Who knew potatoes would bring a family together…or did they? Wrapping 100 pounds sure did do something, anyway…

And don’t forget everyone’s choice of recreation while wrapping potatoes—-the fork stabbing!

And now it’s a new day. A day full of potato baking….

Curious what they’re being used for? Wondering where we got that many potatoes?  So very thankful for a couple of precious friends of mine who organize a Potato Drop at Crosspoint, their church.  It is all part of an “end hunger” campaign and the 42,000 pounds of potatoes are to be USED or GIVEN AWAY.  Meanwhile, our church was planning to serve a Wednesday evening meal to our youth kids in the community.  We had been trying to come up with a cool menu and one that would be something the kids don’t eat very often.  After talking with them about the potato drop—-we came up with the idea of a POTATO BAR.  In Moundridge we are serving about 130 kids and leaders each Wednesday night—and that’s just for grades 5th through high school!  It’s an awesome thing, but it’s also a pretty big deal to provide a good meal each week.  So these potatoes have been a HUGE blessing in so many ways.


Is that awesome or what?  You know what was even more awesome?  Seeing these Hutchinson HS football guys work hard, loading up potatoes for each person.  They were so kind, helpful, respectful—can’t say enough about them!  A chance for blessings all around.  Can’t wait to load up a potato tonight!

oh no—not again!!!


I’ve got to hand it to my friends.  They are always looking out for me.  Any chance to continue my shopping and “good deal finds” addiction.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!  Meanwhile, Steve is saying “No, no, no—stop the madness!!”  HA!

I have a mild love affair with Zulily.  Remember my $22 coats?  I love them and have worn them both enough times already to make it worth it.  I am still contemplating if the mustard yellow one looks ok with my blonde hair.  Still yet to be determined…  And my most recent purchase arrived at my door step just yesterday.  I have been searching and searching for a rug for under my dining room table.  They are not cheap as you know if you’ve ever bought rugs.  But THIS one, was so reasonable and is just about perfect for my style.  SCORE!!  Zulily rocked another one.  And it’s huge.  Like you can scoot your chair back huge—which is not what I was expecting.  Steve and I just looked at it trying to figure out if this is really what we want.  And I’m pretty sure it is.  I just need him to lift my table onto it after we get it to lay flat.


I also love The Plaid Barn.   It’s one daily deal.  Sometimes I love it—and sometimes I don’t because I am NOT a crafter.  But if you are, you need to sign up!!

Now, I’ve been doing a great job of keeping things in check.  Online shopping is just about the greatest thing ever invented.  Truly.  And if my girls were still baby girls (sniff, sniff) I would be having the time of my life with all of the absolutely adorable holiday outfits–and now the Christmas themed green and red chevron dresses and ruffles—-oh my, it all I can do to not have another baby.  I am kidding.  Really. (Steve just got a shiver down his spine). I can think of a few little baby girls I could just dress up.  Maybe that’s a better option?!

So, I get this text from a sweet friend, who just happens to have some adorable little girls I could dress up, THANKS CASEY!!!  And she leads me to another daily deal shopping site.  Oh my goodness gracious.  This one is so awesome it overwhelmed me.

Chevron Table Runner with Burlap Ruffle – LAST CHANCE ! HOT BUY

THIS is what I am loving right now from JANE.  I have not sat Steve down to tell him how great of a business investment this would be for holiday gatherings.  I’m sure he will agree.  JANE has got some of the neatest things–and a WIDE variety of different items—women’s and children’s clothing, home décor, and fun things like these Chevron table runners.  What can I say?  I am a sucker for Chevron–mixed with Christmas?  Oh my.  I am hooked.  I LOVE this site.  And I think I will be anxiously awaiting every morning the email to show me the day’s deals.

And if my addictions are not enough—I feel compelled to share once again, a fun little website that I am no doubt addicted to Pinterest Told Me To.     This is seriously so much fun.  When I finally “tried” her advice and ordered some of her must haves, I now trust her completely.  Now, obviously not everything that she recommends is going to work for everybody.  She is ITTY BITTY!!  So, I have to be careful because what looks amazing on her, is going to look different on me.  But she gives you a guide for if you should order a size down or up, etc.  It is fun.  I am SO NOT a fan of selfies of my self, but would like to show you my favorite Must Have Outfit that I got from the Pinterest Told me To site…

The best thing about this outfit is that everything can be worn with other things. So it’s a closet workhorse. The boots? I wear almost every day. Ask Steve. He has been struggling with the black/brown combo—but that’s a conversation for another day. And the white shirt works with ever color of scarf you can come up with. Black jeans? That’s obvious. And the scarf—comfy and a neutral accessory for so many things. Ok. I’m done.

it’s no wonder…



It’s 6:20 am on Saturday morning and the end of my night is in sight at the hospital. Meanwhile, a morning most kids would be sleeping, a text comes through my phone with this picture of happiness. Sorry kiddos—you were blessed with a dad who is the epitome of a morning person. A dad who is up and at it and wants you to be up and at it too. Hey, it’s basketball season, right? So how about a few drills to start off your early Saturday morning?

It’s no wonder they don’t want me to go to work…