Friday, August 29, 2008

Labor of Love

*picture from Labor of Love site on Facebook
Above is an event this Sunday night in Nashville, Tennessee to support Sisters of Rwanda, Falling Whistles, Dry Tears, eXile international, ArtStopsViolence, and Global Support Mission.
David and I hope that one of us is able to attend (we will proabably have to do rock, paper, scissors to see who will get to go). David actually met this past week with a girl who works with eXile international and learned about her work, including counseling children soldiers in Africa, displaced Africans in refugee camps, and even families affected by the violence from the Kenyan presidential elections.
We also came across this blog from the Falling Whistles organization. I highly recommmend spending some time reading through some of the exerpts in this blog to make yourself uncomfortable (so that you may find a way to make a difference) and more aware of the children being taken in the Congo and forced into becoming soldiers.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Neighborhood Friends & US Citizenship

I have been getting together with moms from our neighborhood on Mondays. We have met in our neighborhood park, at a neighborhood restaurant, and now have been meeting in each other's homes. This week was my week to host. I normally would have made chicken salad but we have two vegetarians in our group so I had to be more creative. So, I made hummus and served with carrots, cucumbers and pita bread, pasta salad, a green salad with strawberries and blueberries, and zucchini bread.
I also made these yummy treats for dessert....I filled mini pie crusts with nutella and topped with cool whip.
On Wednesday, two of the husbands from our mom group received their US Citizenship. So we had a surprise party for them at our neighborhood park. One is from Mexico and the other is from Germany. We had traditional "American" food, red, white and blue decorations, and even "USA" songs in the background.
Asher and his friend Sophia (whose dad, Pablo, became a US citizen)
We are really enjoying getting to know more families in our neighborhood and look forward to more events like this!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Back to School and New Words

We had cooler weather today and Labor Day is approaching so summer must be coming to an end. Our afternoons spent in the baby pool might be over. So, I wanted to share the picture above of how we spent the hottest days of the summer.

Another sign of summer ending is school back in session. Asher and I are not back in school but David is. David is teaching an 8-week course again at Lipscomb University (with the understanding that he is done once the baby arrives :)). He started back last night. It makes for a long Monday for all of us. He goes straight from work to teach from 5:30-9:30pm. Thankfully, our good friends Zane and Jodi came over for dinner last night and helped make Asher and my night go by faster. So, if anyone is every looking to hang out on a Monday night, Asher and I would love to visit!
Even though Asher is not in school, he is taking to learning new words right now. It seems like he is learning a new word every day so it is fun to see what it will be. Today's new word was "mailman." This really is no surprise because he gets so excited when he hears the mailman driving down our street and loves to watch him take the mail to each mailbox.

Here is a brief list of words he is now saying: dada, mama, nana (in that order), ball (oldie but goodie), park, more, bath, no (which is actually one of the cutest word he says because he really forms his lips into an "o" but I try not to laugh since it could lead to bad things), noah, block, bus, ice (the other cutest word that he says), bird. I am sure there are a few more but these are popular ones right now.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Toy Train

I have been on the lookout for some wooden toys for Asher. They are not cheap so I was excited to find this toy train at our church consignment sale. I can't believe how long he will sit and play with this train and now I wish that I would have saved it until baby #2 arrives to give him something to do while I will be nursing. Oh, well. I also found him a shopping cart that he has been enjoying pushing around and pretend playing with all the food inside. Consignment sales are great!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Secret Home Remedies

Here are a few remedies that I am going to try (thanks, Linda). I am especially excited about the fruit fly remedy (but at least Asher has learned the word "bug" with them flying around our house.)

Better bananas
Peel a banana from the bottom and you won't have to pick the little 'stringy things' off of it. That's how the primates do it.
Take your bananas apart when you get home from the store. If you leave them connected at the stem, they ripen faster.
Choosing peppers
Peppers with 3 bumps on the bottom are sweeter and better for eating.
Peppers with 4 bumps on the bottom are firmer and better for cooking.

Reheat Pizza
Heat up leftover pizza in a nonstick skillet on top of the stove, set heat to med-low and heat till warm. This keeps the crust crispy. No soggy micro pizza.

No More Mosquitoes
Place a dryer sheet in your pocket. It will keep the mosquitoes away.

Goodbye Fruit Flies
To get rid of pesky fruit flies, take a small glass, fill> it 1/2' with Apple Cider Vinegar and 2 drops of dish washing liquid; mix well. You will find those flies drawn to the cup and gone forever!

Get Rid of Ants
Put small piles of cornmeal where you see ants. They eat it, take it 'home,' can't digest it so it kills them. It may take a week or so, especially if it rains, but it works and you don't have the worry about pets or small children being harmed!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Shaun Groves

(picture from Shaun Groves blog)
Last night, our church hosted the muscial guest, Shaun Groves. He was part of a series we have had on Wednesday nights, where the muscial guest shares songs related to one of the Fruit of the Spirit and then a host and the audience have an oppurtunity to dialogue with the muscial guest between songs. Shaun's focus last night was on "gentleness." His songs spoke of the Kingdom of God that is NOW and how as Christians we are to become poor in Spirit first so that gentleness may be displayed in our actions. His main message was about our responsibility as Christians to take care of the poor and how our churches are failing to prepare us for this. We are more often taught on being "saved" so that we will go to heaven (and not hell) when we die but we are not being taught that Jesus was sharing a bigger message that many of us have missed. Jesus' message was that you are "saved" so that NOW you can act and bring about what He calls the Kingdom of God, a Kingdom where mercy, peace and justice reign! Not a popular topic we hear from the pulpit these days and that is unfortunate. Shaun tackled this hard question from an audience member on why do we not hear this message in our churches (of any denomination)? Shaun gave a great response that convicted me and brought me to tears. He even took the time to sum it up on his blog and you can read his response here. I hope you take the time to read his comments and share with me what you think.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Fun finds

I found these cute, reusuable sandwich and snack bags made by Happy-sacks. It's a nice substitute for all those plastice sandwich bags. They are a little pricey but can easily be cleaned either by rinsing out or throwing in the wash.
These are fabric rice and feed bags from Cambodia that can be used as a laundry bag or a wastebasket. You can find more envirmonmentally-friendly products at VivaTerra's website.

WeeGo glass baby bottles by Babylife
I found these bottles as an option for BPA-free. The glass bottles have a silicone sleeve that prevent breakage if bottles are dropped. This company is trying to make products as "green" and "safe" as possible. They also are commited to giving a portion of their profits to an environmental charity and an international children's fund.

Monday, August 11, 2008

Wedding Weekend

This past Saturday we celebrated the marriage of Lindsey and Andrew (a couple from our lifegroup). They had a beautiful evening wedding and reception at our church. We are so excited for them!
Family/friends from our lifegroup--Angie, Greg, Lila, and Sherisse
Asher was not originally planning to be in attendence but since he was still recovering from croup, we decided to bring him along. He and David sat up in the balcony and he was as quiet as could be (except when his barky cough would come out). We had a great time and look forward to seeing Andrew and Lindsey when they return from their honeymoon. (Thanks, Carrie, for letting me borrow your at 31 weeks!)

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A Late Night Outing

At 11:45pm on Tuesday evening, I woke up to Asher crying and not a typical "I am trying to fall back asleep cry." David had been working downstairs and came up to check on Asher. I immediately hear David say that Asher is having trouble breathing. There is nothing scarier than hearing your child struggle to breath and waiting for the doctor to call back to tell you what to do. We hear from the doctor and end up having to make a 1pm trip to the doctor's office. (Just one other reason why we LOVE Dr. Mallard....he drives into the office at 1pm to see what is wrong with Asher.) It turns out the little one has croup! So our lives have been on hold for the past few days and I am trying to sleep when Asher does. I guess he's just trying to prepare me for the lack of sleep I will be getting when baby brother arrives.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Dried Black-eyed Peas

This week we received dried black-eyed peas from our CSA. I have yet to shell the peas but am guessing that it will probably come out to be 1/4 cup of peas. Does anyone have any ideas for what I should do with these? And do you know if you have to soak them before you cook them? Looking forward to trying something new!

Friday, August 1, 2008


I currently have many old magazines that I am trying to figure out what to do with them. My biggest issue right now is that I hold on to them because I think that one day I may want to try a new recipe or remember a creative idea for home organization or find a kid's activity. I just can't figure out the best way to get a handle on it all without keeping every single magazine but still keep the ideas. Does anyone have a suggestion?

I did come across some creative ways to recycle magazines so at least I will have options once I decide how to keep the information I want out of them.
-pass magazines on to friends
-give magazines to waiting rooms
-donote them to schools or literacy programs (kid-friendly)
-use them for crafts
-or just recycle them