Tuesday, September 30, 2008

5 Ways to Get Fit for Free!

I recently read an article from sparkpeople.com called  25 Ways to Get Fit for Less than $25.”  Since I recently cancelled my gym membership to try and save some money, this article inspired me. So being cheap like I am,  I wanted to share the top five ways to get fit for free!


1. Library. Your local library has many varieties of DVD's, VHS tapes and fitness books to help you get fit.


2. Online workouts. Many websites offer free workout videos including sparkpeople, youtube, and shape.


3. Walking or Running. Get outside and just do it. Load the kids in the stroller and get moving. Go around your neighborhood or go to the park.


4. Jump rope. Who doesn't have a jump rope lying around?  Did you know that based on an average 150lb person, jumping rope for 15 minutes burns 125 calories?


5. Play with your kids. Play tag, hide and seek, duck-duck-goose, football, soccer, or turn on some music and dance. Your kids will have so much fun and you will reap the benefits of getting in your exercise.


I hope these things will inspire you and help you stop using excuses for why you can't workout. It inspired me!


Now what about you? What are your favorite ways to workout that don't cost anything?





Monday, September 29, 2008


Ok, have you ever read a funny little blog, a text a friend sent you that just got you giggling, or come across something pretty dern hilarious that deserves a little more than just an old LOL?  I mean, come on, LOL is getting over-used just a little much, plus yeah, sometimes I read something that makes me say, “HA!” and then I’m done and don’t think about it anymore.  Very rarely does something make me ROFL (roll on the floor laughing for those of you not quite up with internet slang).


 But sometimes something makes me “Ha” and then keep on “Ha-ing” until I’ve got a pretty good out loud laugh going on, but yet still not quite rolling on the floor.  Are ya with me?


Oh I know, there’s one out there I could use.  LM%*#O.  But I’m a good Christian girl and I just don’t have any sense using that word, even in internet slang.  It’s just a potty word and that’s all there is to it. 


But, back to my first dilemma.  There’s some dern good funnies out there that deserve more than a LOL and I want to have something to give them.


So I’m going with LMPO (laughing my patootie off). 


Now “patootie” is an acceptable term in the Many Meadows’ and extended households for the backside area that we sit on and do other “business” with.  Therefore, I deem this word appropriately worthy of stepping up LOL a notch for the really funny blogs, texts, etc., without having to use potty language to get my point across.


And don’t worry I googled it and it is not used in any current internet slang for anything else, inappropriate or not.


And I leave you with the end result of one of my quandaries for the week and wish you many LMPO in the future.


How do you express your on-line feelings of humor?



Friday, September 26, 2008

And-a-One, And-a-Two...

(sing it with me)…Happy Birthday to You.....Happy Birthday to You…

September is a big month for birthdays in the ManyMeadows+ family. 


Jacob starts it off on the 20th.

Then, Sarah (one of our “plusses”) on the 23rd.

My mom, Laura Lee has her birthday on the 24th.

Then, we skip to the 28th for our oldest daughter, Erin (who celebrates a special one this year!)

Then, the 29th is our oldest son, Andrew’s day, and my brother-in-law, Paul’s.

And we go ahead and celebrate Anna’s birthday with this group, even though hers isn’t until October 9.


Thursday was a great family night celebration at Katie and Alexander’s….well, actually at the park across the street from them. 

 The little kids played. 

       The big kids played.                                            


Abbi made these for dessert.




We ate. (as always)




There were 27 of us.  A great family night!  And one of Anna’s Lifegroup friends came and took pictures of all of us.  (You’ll get to see some of those soon!)



Does your family get together to celebrate birthdays?

Do you have a group of birthdays close together?


Do share!


Oh, and it’s this girl’s birthday today! 

Thursday, September 25, 2008

From Generation to Generation

Today was my mom’s birthday. 

Three of our girls, my sister, our almost-daughter-in-love, and one of our granddaughters were together for lunch to celebrate her special day.


And look.



FOUR generations. Me, my mom, Ali and Lily.

I know, it’s not uncommon to find.  I have pictures of my daughters with my grandmother.  But, once again I was reminded of God’s love.  His love, poured down through four generations. 

And why is that?

The three moms in this picture have been intentional in their teaching of God, His Love, His ways.  But every daughter had to make that heart-choice for herself. 

As parents, we’re never guaranteed that our children will choose to wholeheartedly give themselves to Christ.  But, a life lived in loving and telling and showing our children the great love of our Father speaks volumes.  It did to me. 

…we will praise you forever;
       from generation to generation
       we will recount your praise.  Psalm 79:13

Maybe it begins with you.

Are you a first generation believer?  Or more?  


Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Fun and Cheap Family Day

We are always looking for fun cheap things to do as a family. Over Brad's vacation we took the girls to see Kung Foo Panda at North Park Mall. Every Tuesday they have 50-cent movies. So for two bucks we all got to see a movie.


Some other fun stuff we do for free or cheap are.......


The Mall. Take them to Quail Springs Mall and the kid's play area (don't ask me how they can stay entertained on little plastic frogs, but they love it!)





The Park. We have numerous parks here in Edmond and Oklahoma City, so the kids will never get bored. We like to take a frisbee or football and throw it around with them. To make it even more special, pack a picnic and a blanket. You could make a whole evening out of this and spend nothing!


The Zoo.  Get a zoo pass. We got one the first part of the year when they were running the special for five dollars off. It pretty much pays for itself after the first couple of times.


Redbox.  Go to the Redbox, near most Wal-Marts or McDonalds.   For one dollar you can rent a movie, or if you have a free code you can get it free(just don't forget to take it back the next day). We like to lay out a big blanket in front of the tv and pretend were having a sleepover.


So what are some cheap, fun things your families like to do together?



Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Electing a President (Part 2)

            Elections come and go and I thought the world was coming to the end after seeing my Dad’s reaction to Kennedy being elected over Nixon. Well, the world didn’t end, but that experience taught me that the election of a certain person does not match all the hype or 3 or 4 years and the gazillion dollars to get him into office. Even the President doesn’t have the impact that we think.


 Don’t get me wrong. Electing a good man or woman is important. But the beautiful system that our forefathers created is so ingenious that the checks and balances are there for a purpose.


 Why do I say all this? Because I know Who is really in charge, not only of our country, but also of the world.


 It’s because of having God as my source that when I make a choice for electing a president it’s with God’s wisdom and direction that helps me to choose.


Practically speaking, I always try to find out where the candidates stand on the issues. This is not always easy. The Internet has become a wonderful tool in helping to find what a person stands for. It takes work to see how they have voted or if they believe what is in their speeches. In fact, you can’t really trust what a politician says, not just because of dishonesty and the desire to get elected but also because of perspective and context.


Another important aspect is the platform they stand for. The two major political party platforms are very differing. Have you ever read them?


As I’ve said, listening to what someone else says about a candidate can lead you to mis-truths. Pop culture proponents are notorious in pushing their agendas just like other groups push their own agendas. That’s why we all need to become first-generation researchers, finders of truth on our own so we can make the choice God wants us to.


What do you think? How do you choose?




Monday, September 22, 2008

What's On?

We've never been big TV watchers around here at the ManyMeadows.  We even went through a time when we put the TV in the attic when we were little.  Just imagine trying to watch something with 7 kids running around – DISASTER!!!   There's just enough (ok, more than enough) entertainment around with that many people. 


Now, when Survivor first started we became die-hard fans.  We had family night at Ma and Pa Meadows and everyone gathered around to see the latest tribal councils, competitions, etc.  Then more and more ManyMeadows came along and that fizzled out with all the activity. 


So now that Survivor is kind of a dud, what's on?


 If you have not checked out The Office you are missing out on some serious laughs - “That's what she said.”  (Sorry you gotta watch it to get my drift).  That show is a must see in your weekly watching! 


What else is on?  Am I missing something good? 


What is in your line-up for the week now that all the new seasons are starting?






Saturday, September 20, 2008

NFL: Chaos in the Mountains

OK, OK. I will start off by saying it WAS a fumble. Now, for those of you who don't know, the Denver Broncos had a fate driven win over the San Diego Chargers this last weekend. I will give you the Broncos fan bias recap.

The Broncos had the ball on the 3 yard line and Cutler (QB) clearly fumbled the ball. The only catch was that referee, Ed Hockuly had already blown his whistle deeming the play an incomplete pass. The NFL has a replay rule that says plays can be overturned to be made right. Unfortunately, for the Chargers if a whistle deems the play dead then the ball cannot change hands. So, even though the play was a fumble the Broncos got the ball back and ended up winning the game. Woo-Hoo.


Alright now that I have undoubtedly convinced you that the Broncos are God's team this year, I will give my quick preview for week 3.

Game of the week: Dallas Cowboys go to Green Bay. Wow, this is going to be the scoring fest of the year. Rodgers is going to sling the ball all over the field on one of the worst secondaries in the league. This will be a very fun one to watch but Green Bay's defense will be the deciding factor in this game, and I for one think they will be great. So, in my 1-1 opinion I say there will be a lot of happy Wisconsinites on Monday morning. The Packers eek out one, 35-34 against the Cowboys.



Friday, September 19, 2008

For Your Stylist's Sake

Now that you know some ways to communicate with your hairstylist here are a few things to think about before showing up for your appointment:


1. Don't ask for a mullet, flat top, or a Farrah Fawcett haircut I'm seriously begging you.


2. Please take a shower. There is nothing more gross or smelly than a sweaty head or smelly body.


3. Don't put products in your hair before you get a haircut. It's difficult to comb through all that hairspray.


4. Please don't make business phone calls while you’re getting your haircut. It's just not polite.


5. For you guys, let's just embrace the fact that you’re balding or going gray. It actually looks worse when you try to hide it.


6. When looking at a picture of the person's hair you like, please know that you won't actually look like that. Make sure you really like the haircut not just the way the person looks.

Remember, I'm not a miracle worker,...but I'll try the best I can if you'll try the best you can. :)





Thursday, September 18, 2008

The Heartbeat of the ER

Patients in the ER frequently ask us what we do when the department isn't busy, and we always reply with

something like: "It never slows down. It's always busy." Or,  "Shhh! "(knock on wood).


It's rare but it happens.  And it happened this weekend.


No patients in the emergency room for several hours. So what to do?


After stocking, cleaning and finishing paperwork, sometimes there is still free time left. But you cannot do anything too crazy because you never know when a patient will come in the door.


The ideas that were ruled out this weekend included playing twister, and spin the bottle (the Doc's idea since he was the only male ;) ) We also used to bounce an extra large bouncy ball around the department. But that was before I got hit in the face with it.


There is a game that we do like to play and play frequently. It is called Lower Your Heartrate. I know, we need to work on the title,  but trust me.  It is a very entertaining game. The objective? Strap on a heart rate monitor and try to get your heart rate as low as you can. There are no rules to what others can do or say to you, so you have to control your heart rate while they taunt. I know.  We're all strange.


 But guess who's the reigning champ?  39bpm baby!


 They were getting ready to get the crash cart.


What are some crazy things you've done to pass the time? 






Wednesday, September 17, 2008

In God's Name.....What Was He Thinking?

a donkey speaking to affect change?




a prophet asked to marry a prostitute?




the King of Kings born of a virgin?  in an obscure village?  With the animals?




a young girl positioning herself and using physical attraction to ask for the salvation of a nation?




a writer of much of the New Testament previously being a persecutor of the followers of Christ?




a mom of 5 for Vice President?




Hmmm.....In God's name?  What is He thinking????



"I don't think the way you think.
   The way you work isn't the way I work."
         God's Decree.
"For as the sky soars high above earth,
   so the way I work surpasses the way you work,
   and the way I think is beyond the way you think.  Isaiah 55:8-9






Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Successful Single Business Sock Seeks Mate

I’m convinced. Dryers (or washers) really do eat socks. How do I know? Every time we did laundry at our house, there’d be another lost sock; a lonely, wandering cotton footy, without its match.

You can imagine, over time, what that must have been like with a family of nine people. Not only did we have four or five loads to fold EACH DAY, but at the end, we had a basket full of single socks.

One remedy was The Lost Sock Shop. This simple piece of one by four held a Velcro strip so single socks could be displayed and hopefully matched. Kind of like online dating for stockings, these socks would hang around until their match was found, or we threw them out. A sad existence. A desperate attempt. The shop didn’t last long.

Every couple of months mom would get fed up enough to loosen her frugal way of life and throw all the single socks away. Of course within a month the lint-spitting, sock-eating monster would choke out a couple more miss-matched socks whose fate didn’t look promising.

Do you have this same problem at your house? Have you found the remedy for missing socks?




Monday, September 15, 2008

Whatya Got?

I'm all about people that like to make New Year's resolutions, because really I'm just all about people (myself included) making goals for their life.  For me though, I like to break it down and make new personal goals at each start of a new semester.


So to look back over the summer here were my personal goals:


*Get a tan  check

*Garden check

*Organize shed  check

*Organize spare bedroom/office/workout room uncheck

*Do my school planning for the year  check


So I'm 4 for 5.  Not bad.


So for this Fall semester I have new personal goals.  Here they go:


*Make a habit of brushing my teeth twice a day (yeah, I'm just a once-a-dayer, embarrassing huh?)

*Learn how to take better pictures with my Canon point and shoot (any tips???)

*Learn better tricks with Photo Shop Elements (any tips???)

*Sell all the extra stuff laying around the house on Ebay

*Start working out at 7:00am (ick, I'm SO not a morning person)


Ok, there's mine.  Whatya got?  Get some motivation to make some goals and then let’s tackle them this semester!





Friday, September 12, 2008

NFL Week 2, Will it be as Good as the First???

OK, so since last week was such a hit (especially for Theresa) I have decided to write another blog about the NFL.

So, for this one I will start out by appealing to those fans who are... how we might say, “casual”. The NFL is composed of 32 teams in 2 conferences, the AFC and the NFC. In each conference there are 4 divisions for example the AFC west or the NFC east.

Alright, so now that we have taken care of the more casual fans I will dive in a little. I am going to keep with theme and break down one main game this week. However, I must comment a bit on the outcomes of the last week. First off, I am 1-0 in my predictions. Second, I would like to say holy crap. INDY what the heck happened? Like I mentioned in my last blog I thought it was kind of a gimme game. Oh, and poor Brady....except he will still get millions to sit and watch football from the sidelines. This event, sorry for you Pat fans out there, was the best thing to happen to the AFC. Also, I have to say this because I am a Broncos fan and they are a division rival so HA HA HA HA San Diego LOST.

The game I have decided is the most interesting this week is the Panthers vs. the Bears for obvious reasons. The Panthers had a huge upset when they beat the Chargers and the Bears pulled one for the ages and defeated Indy at their brand new stadium. My quick assessment of this week's match up is that Matt Forte will have a huge game because the Bears simply don't trust any QB they have, even though Orton did pretty well last week. Unfortunately for the Panthers there will be no Rasario to save them this week and since Steve Smith is still out they will have a very hard time against a re-established Bears defense.

My prediction is the Bears eat the Panthers 24-10.

Who's your player to watch this week and why?




Never Belated Again

Here’s a time-saving tip to help ensure that all your loved ones receive cards from you on time.


Collect various cards (birthday, anniversary, holiday) while you are out on your normal shopping trips. Keep your eyes peeled for discounts/sales (especially after holidays—you can plan ahead for next year!)


Organize your cards and “file” them away in a box along with a nice writing pen, cute stamps, and a calendar of birthdays, anniversaries, and other special events.


Here’s the KEY: Whenever you find yourself with a few spare moments, write out a card or two for upcoming events (i.e. your niece’s graduation that’s a couple months away), rather than waiting until the last minute.


Write the date of the event (i.e. 9/15) in the space where the stamp will go. A week or so before the event, place the stamp over the date and stick it in the mail!





Thursday, September 11, 2008

State of the Church

While browsing a couple blogs I like to frequent, I came across this link to a recent Time Magazine article titled "The 25 Most Influential Evangelicals". I found a number of their selections interesting and to be frank, saddening.

While traveling through Israel this past summer with my wife and sister, I spent several days in a hostel in Eilat, which is located on the southern tip of Israel. During our stay there, we encountered a group of college students from the U.S. who had come on a two week trip to Israel to spread the gospel. Armed with Bible tracts and enthusiasm, they would leave the hostel every morning and spend the day trying to discreetly (proselytizing is illegal in Israel) hand out tracts and initiate conversations with non-Christians on the beaches.

However, more often than not, when they were able to actually start a conversation they would be stymied by the questions the Israelis asked them. Their theological knowledge did not go much beyond the basic information presented in the tract.

Talking to our hosts in Jerusalem (friends from Oklahoma who have lived in Jerusalem for over a year now) several weeks later, I discovered that this is fairly common. A short term evangelical group will come over and try to distribute tracts or initiate conversations, but as soon as the Jews start asking theological questions (and they can ask some doozies) the evangelicals have no response.

But who can blame them? According to Time Magazine, their intellectual leaders include, among others:

A man who denies the Trinity in lieu of the prosperity gospel (T.D. Jakes)

Another who denies almost any truth associated with the Bible and subscribes to a postmodern view of scripture (Brian McLaren)

A prosperity gospel preacherette whose teachings lack a solid Biblical basis (Joyce Meyer)

The "theological mind" behind the Left Behind Series (Tim Lahaye)
And on a somewhat amusing note, one of the names on the list (Richard John Neuhaus) is not evangelical at all, but catholic.  Huh?

To be fair, I was not previously familiar with all of the names on the list, so I cannot comment on all of them.  It was disheartening to me that no serious theologians (to my knowledge) were included.  
What do you think?  Are you happy with the direction the evangelical church in the U.S. is taking?  Do you think that it is creating a generation of shallow Christians?

Jude 1:3-16

"Striving to attain the true church and pure doctrine is inherently necessary." - Dietrich Bonhoeffer

While this is something I have been thinking about for some time now, some of the thoughts and inspiration and many of the links in this post come from a recent series on fads in the church by the Pyromaniacs blog.  It is a thought provoking read.


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Cut. It. Out.

You want to know the worst phrase you could say to your hairstylist?


The other day this lady comes in and sits down in my chair, I ask her how she would like her hair cut. She replies, "I don't know.  You’re the professional.” 


                                              Anna (3)   Ali (5)                                              


Yes, lady.   I know I'm the professional.   But I don't know how you want it cut…I can’t read your mind. (I didn't say this out loud, even though I wanted to).


So, as the professional,  I'm here to help you know how to communicate with your hairstylist so you get the cut you want. It's also good to have an idea how you want it cut before you sit in your hairstylist's chair.(hint hint to that lady)


1. Bring a picture. You can try to explain it all day but what something means to you may mean something totally different to your hairstylist. If you don't have a picture,  most salons will have books to look through. You just have to ask for them.


2. Remember what year we are in.  2008,  not 1970. You might want to brush up on some more recent celeb haircuts so those of us that were born after 1970 will know who you are talking about. J


3. Know your lingo. It is no longer called "feathering".  It's called ”layers”.  You probably shouldn't ask for "frosting" either. (unless you’re talking to Abbi)   It is now called “highlights".  For you guys remember what number of clipper guard is used. Come on it's the only thing you have to remember.  Write it down if you have to and put it in your wallet.


4. Don't be afraid to speak up. If your cut is not looking the way you want it to,  speak up before it's too late and all your hair is on the floor.


I hope this helps you understand a little bit about your hairstylist, and if you’re not happy with your current hairstylist,  you can always come and visit me!


Have any hair horror stories to share?







Tuesday, September 09, 2008

A Battle for Influence--Who Will Win?

Think for a minute.  What is your scope of influence?  Who do you rub shoulders with, spend your time with, have the ability to encourage and bring truth? 


It may be your immediate family and the checker at the grocery store.  It may be your classmates.  It may be a whole youth group or even a church body.  Maybe it’s the people at your office or the crew you work with.


Whatever your surroundings may be on a daily or regular basis, this is the group of people God has placed in your life for the purpose of change.  Change for the better.  Heart changes to affect eternity.


What better place for satan to bring defeat into our lives than with the very strengths we may have to influence those around us? He will bring the greatest force of his attacks to tear us down and ultimately to cause our influence to be weakened.  His final victory would be for us to be so overcome with sin or discouragement that our influence would even be completely gone.  He’ll take our greatest strengths and bring lie after lie, wearing us down to believe it.


You know the pastor that fell because his love and care for his church was turned into love and care for another woman.

You’ve seen the gifted musician that is so insecure that he can’t break through into the freedom of worship.

You’ve seen the moms that so love that new infant and then are so overwhelmed with frustration as they grow up there may eventually be broken relationship with that child.

You’ve seen dads that totally give up their responsibility.

You’ve seen or experienced sibling rivalry that disintegrates into hatred.


What is your greatest strength? Your greatest area of influence?   Do you recognize how badly satan wants to remove you from that place?  How he will use your very strengths to bring defeat into your life?  How it can begin with you believing even some very small lies?


I feel so strongly about this, I challenge you to be aware of this conflict.  It’s a battle we don’t have to lose.


Are you struggling with this right now?  Don’t try to make it alone. E-mail me, or find someone that will agree to pray with you and hold you accountable to your calling. 


Will we believe the lies or stand in His truth?  It’s a daily choice.


 Stay alert! Watch out for your great enemy, the devil. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for someone to devour. Stand firm against him, and be strong in your faith.  I Pet. 5:8-9





Monday, September 08, 2008

A Long Prayer

Celebrating the Labor Day weekend the ManyMeadows-plus gathered around the table full of steaming barbecue ready to bless the food and dig in.


Sadie (2 years) decides she would like to say the prayer. So, with bowed heads and maybe one eye open she starts mumbling words barely audible to the rest of us. I made a mental note in my head:  pray louder around little ones so that they actually know we talk to God and not just mumble a few words and then start to eat!


And deciding that sister’s prayer was not enough, Lily (3 years) starts praying over the food. Hands folded and eyes tightly shut she starts reciting the prayer like she does at home,



“Jesus, thank you for today, help tomorrow be a good day, thank you for our hearts, thank you for mommy and daddy and sister. . . “


she pauses not quite sure what to say next but with a little help from Grandpa pointing at himself and whispering, “Grandpa, Grandpa” she continues.


“Thank you for Grandpa, and Mimi, and Abbi and Do-do.”(the cousins’ name for Andrew).   Long sigh. . .


“And Kody and Alec and Kate-Kate and Alexander.”


She continues on down the list until each one in our family has been prayed for.  She even remembered Jacob who had skipped the prayer to take a quick shower after the backyard football game.


When she finally finished her prayer we all laughingly proclaim, “AMEN”!


Lily's sweet prayer reminded me that we should always be praying for our family members, even if there are twenty of them. It made me think of three very special women in my life, great examples of prayer warriors for their families:


-My awesome grandmother,  Laura Lee Thomas Marks

-My gracious mother in-law,  Nancy Mansour and

-My beautiful and hardworking mother,  Robin Meadows


All three of these women pray for their kids and grandkids with diligence, covering them with blessings and protection.


I'd like to challenge everyone to pray for each member of your family, individually, everyday this week. Pray for their successes, lift up their weaknesses and pray protection over them.  See how it makes you get along with your siblings better or gives you more grace for your children.


I'm excited to see how God will use this to change our hearts toward each other.



Friday, September 05, 2008

Jets vs. Dolphins Bang or Bust???

My take on opening weekend for the NFL


Well for most of us guys this is the holy grail of sports holidays. Yes, I am speaking of the first regular season NFL weekend. I think the most interesting game is the Dolphins, Jets. Both are mediocre teams and probably won’t be playoff contenders, but let’s face it.  What else is there to watch? I mean you can only watch New England beat up on KC for so long and Indy will likely embarrass the Bears.


So, let’s talk about predictions on this matchup.


 Will the Dolphins be better than a 1 win team this year? This is an easy one for me; I think the dolphins could push 500 this year. They have upgraded at QB, OL, and they got back one great back. I know what you’re thinking Ronnie Browns knee is still tender, to which I reply I am not talking about Ronnie Brown. Yeah that’s right I am talking about the running, smoking machine,  Ricky Williams. Also Chad Pennington might be a better leader when there isn’t so much pressure; I mean for goodness sakes, the Jets fans show up to the draft in full force. Also I think Ted Ginn Jr. now has someone to get him the ball and he is going to have a blowout year. My prediction for the Dolphins is 7-9 with an opening day loss to the Jets.


 The next question for this game is:  Will Favre pan out? My answer is simply yes. He is a star and this year won’t be any different. Yeah, he has an awkward style and sometimes gets careless.  But who in the NFL doesn’t? And don’t reply with Tom Brady. My opinion is that Laverneus Coles and Jericho Cotchery are arguably just as good as Driver and Jennings. And Thomas Jones is better than Ryan Grant in my opinion. Need I remind you that at this time last year Ryan Grant was on a practice squad for the New York Giants? You will see his true colors this year.


Back on topic.  For the most interesting game on opening weekend I predict that the Jets drown the Dolphins by a score of 28-17.


Have any predictions?











One Chart, Two Chart, Red Chart, Blue Chart . . .

. . .  black chart, blue chart, old chart, new chart.  Some are sad.  And some are glad.  And some are very, very bad.  Chart, chart, chart, we love our charts!


Do you chart?  I chart.  I chart quite regularly actually!  Charts rule my schedule . . . ahem, I mean help guide me through a productive day.  Well, I have a new chart that will rule  . . . I mean guide the Simms family house this year.  Check it out!


My little guys are so excited about their new chart that they actually can't wait to do the next thing on the list.  Kids like to know what is expected of them.  I have found that charts are one way to give them some structure.


I have a friend that has done a chart for potty training with a reward system and another friend who had a chart for her three kids for their AM routine before going to school.


If you've never tried a chart and you have an area with your kids (or yourself) that could use some improvement, try a chart!  They're super fun to make, they're super cool to have hanging in your house, and if followed correctly, they will help your day be more productive.


So join me now . . . Today is gone.  Today was fun.  Tomorrow is another one.  Every day from here to there, charts, charts, charts are everywhere!





Thursday, September 04, 2008

Electing a President (Part 1)

Jimmy Carter vs. Gerald Ford was one of the first presidential elections I could legally vote in back in 1976. (I know, you weren’t even born …) Carter, an unknown candidate at that time, rose to win the election, mainly due to media attention. Others, like JFK, used the first televised debates to make Nixon look nervous, but it was Carter that rode a wave of media frenzy, making “a simple peanut farmer from Georgia” into a President.


That media frenzy now has a name. It is called pop-culture. Pop (popular) culture has always been with us, but is stronger now in shaping and molding opinion in our society. New technology has even led the way for it to become the very fabric of our lives.


I know you all know that.


So why am I writing this? 


I want to question why you vote for a candidate. 


I also want to encourage you to rise above voting for a man or woman based solely on pop-culture standards.


What do you think?


Do Christ followers sometimes just throw their hands up in confusion and vote for the popular pick?


Is voting for someone based on choosing the lesser of two evils?


Oh, yeah. As a young voter way back in 1976 I got caught up with the Carter wave and voted for him. And Robin cancelled my vote with a vote for Ford. J

Come on, let’s discuss. 



Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Time to Eat!

Since there are 10 writers here, this will be a rather lengthy post.  But check out what each person will “bring to the table”.  We don't all agree with each other on everything, but we do agree to love each other, no matter what!


Most everyone works, either part-time or full-time, and some are students and work part-time or even full-time! 


You’ll probably hear from the girls more than the guys, because, well….we just talk a lot! J


From me you’ll still hear the encouragement that you can make it as a home educating parent and live to tell about it.   Things on gardening, Bible, raising kids,  and life in general.



I plan to bring practical ideas and maybe even alternatives to status quo thinking to the table. Subjects such as finances, politics, raising and managing a family and ideas of decision making will be my areas of concentration.








What I  will bring to the table:
 ~My perspectives on growing up as the oldest in a large family, a homeschooler who is homeschooling her children, and a country girl; oh and any other thing I feel like giving my perspective on . . . because believe me . . . I always have a perspective on stuff!
~Tips on fitness, nutrition, weight loss, cooking, gardening, scrapbooking, debt-free living, homeschooling, and living life with purpose
  ~My journey in being a wife, mother, child of God and full-time stay-at-home homeschooling mom that is pretty hip and cool - ha ha, well you can be the judge of that!



What I will bring to the table. I will be sharing an endless supply of yummy recipes, weight loss tips, reviews of books I love, fun and easy craft projects, hair tips, things about my adorable girls, tips on organizing your chaotic life, and sharing in my walk to become a woman of God.



What I will bring to the table. What I learned in college, lessons of a young father, adult league sports, my life as an accountant, current events in sports, and my lessons with the Lord.



Off the top of my head, here are ideas on what I could contribute:
Do-It-Yourself craft projects
Nifty/Thrifty gift-giving
Creative ways to recycle/manage your time/avoid clutter/get organized
Tips on being frugal
Cake decorating (of course)
Book/Movie reviews
Seeing God's hand in my life








What I will bring to the table:
-Stories from the ER
-Ways to keep you out of the ER
-Adventures of nursing school
-Quick recipes (especially using the crockpot)
-Lessons I learned in Israel/Egypt








What I bring to the table:  My thoughts on some theological issues, traveling stories and tips, and maybe some random quotes or facts. :)








What I will bring to the table, besides the good looks and the outstanding wit, okay I’m kidding… ½ way kidding.)  I will be bringing many insightful and encouraging stories about our culture of students in today’s world. I will also share my experiences in losing 75 pounds and the things I learned during that long and difficult time.  Plus, fun spontaneous thoughts about what it was like growing up in a family of seven children, of which I am smack, dab in the middle.








What I will bring to the table:  Things that I've come across in my life that mean a lot to me, and random thoughts that go through my head everyday.


So?  What are you looking forward to hearing?