Category: my family

{40 till 40} day 40

Whew! Can’t believe it.  In 40 days, I will be 40! When you are young, 40 seems like forever away, but suddenly, you find yourself approaching 40 and wonder where time has gone. 

SO,  I have decided to blog, what I am calling “40 till 40”.  Basically, it will be 40 lessons that I have learned / or am learning.   Some may be funny….some may be serious…we shall see where this takes us! 

God’s plan is the best. This is a lesson that has taken me the last 15 years to learn & accept

Prior to getting married, I took for granted my fertility.  When dreaming about your marriage & future family, most girls never stop to think about infertility.  It’s not something that you question.  You assume that you will be in charge of the size of your family, (depending on your beliefs about birth control).  I always pictured myself, husband & 2 kids.  That was the size of my family growing up.  It seemed like a perfect number.  One parent/one kid.  Never imagining that even conceiving one child would be difficult. 

But, God had other plans for my life. 

One child.  Not 2.  Not 5.  Not 19. 


One child that took over a year to conceive.  Month after month, many negative pregnancy tests, many late periods, hopes would begin and then be dashed.  I couldn’t understand it.  Why?  Why me?  Why us? 

But it was God’s timing.  Not mine.  He was in control. 

Finally, I was pregnant.  I was more than ecstatic.  I had dreamed and waited for this!  Then 3 solid months of “morning-n00n-night” sickness set in.  I was miserable, but it was ok.  As long as God was protecting the baby inside me, I was fine with not feeling well. 

9 months later, a healthy, beautiful boy was born.  He was (& is) a precious gift from God. 

But, I was still planning out my life.  Thinking that I knew what was in store for us, as a family. 

So, almost 2 years later, we began to desire another child.  Seemed logical.  A playmate.  A brother or sister.  But, that wasn’t what God had in store for our family. 

Now, my son is almost 16.  No brothers.  No sisters.  Just him.  A single blessing from God. 

Is this what I had planned for my life?  Was this the family I dreamed of?  No. 

Did I have many times that I questioned God?  Absolutely. 

It made me doubt myself as a mom.  As a woman.  As a wife.  People all around me where having more children.  Not me.  Wasn’t I a good enough parent?  Didn’t God think I could handle more than one? 

For 15 years I struggled with those questions.  Yes, I knew that there are many women that would love to have one child.  I understand that & I am very thankful for the one that I do have. 

Do I always understand why things happen in my life?  No.  Does God’s plan always align with mine?  Definitely not. 

But I’m ok with that now

God has walked me down this path for a reason.  His reason.  God’s plan is best. 

It’s not always easy.  Nor do we always understand it.  But, God’s plan is best.

The Bible tells us in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  In Proverbs 16:9, God tells us “In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps.”   

God’s plan is best. 

the TP tree

For those of you that may remember our yearly toilet paper roll exchange, here’s what happened this year. 

(For those of you that have NO idea what I am talking about, you can read about it from my post last Christmas…to sum it up, my dad & I have been passing back & forth the same TP roll since 1988…read the story here.)

It was my turn this year.  I had totally forgotten about it until about a week before Christmas.  Well, in order to stump my dad, I knew I better get thinking. 

I remembered a post that I had seen on a blog about making fabric Christmas trees….uh-huh, that’s it! 

Here are the easy instructions to make a Fabric Christmas Tree:


  • fabric or ribbon
  • hot glue gun
  • tree (cone) shaped foam center
  • (because I was using mine as a decoy, I also bought a circular foam base for the bottom, so that the hollowed out tree couldn’t easily be spotted.)
  • additional ribbon or trinkets if you want to “decorate” your tree  ( I used ribbon bows on the top, but chose not to decorate my tree.)


  • Cut (or tear) strips of fabric approximately 1inch x 4 inches. (Or cut strips of ribbon)
  • Take each strip, place a dot of hot glue on back side of fabric, fold strip in half, gluing it to itself…basically making a folded strip.  You can fluff it open a little at the end.
  • Once strips are ready, begin at base and start hot gluing them to the foam.  Each time I began a new row, I shifted slightly, like shingles.
  • Keep going all the way to the top.  Your last (top) row should stick out above the top of your foam piece.  (I cut a very small circle and tucked it down inside the top, so that none of the foam would be visible.) 
  • To finish it off, I made 3 bows out of ribbon and glued those to the top, helping to close it up slightly. 

My dad has a strong passion for supporting our troops overseas, and his home office is done in red-white-blue, so that is why I chose to use those colors, as oppose to traditional Christmas colors. 

For my tree, my hubby hollowed out the center of the foam, so that the TP roll could easily be inserted and hidden.   

It worked!  I gave my dad this gift for his office on the 21st and after celebrating Christmas on the 25th, I had to give him a clue in order for him to find it! 

We will see what he comes up with for next year! 

cute shoes! uh, no.

Today was the day that we bowled.  It’s a tradition.  We always bowl sometime during the week between Christmas & New Year’s.  My sister is a teacher, so she’s free.  My mom stays at home and my dad’s retired, but works occasionally…and Nick is off from school and of course, I’m free.  So, other than Kevin, we all go bowling. 

I remember bowling when I was little.  The loud, smoke filled bowling alley.  People drinking and rowdy. 

Now, the bowling alley is a different experience.  More family friendly.  (Asthma friendly too). 

It was a fun day. 

kate’s purse

My niece & nephew have spent the entire weekend with us.  In a house of 3 people, the youngest being 15, there aren’t too many things to entertain a 10 & 6 year old. 

EXCEPT for……. 

Craft supplies! 

Kate, the 10 y.o. made this cute purse.  For the most part, all by herself!  She came up with shape, handstitched the edges, (whipstitch, is what I call it), hemmed the flap, we added a snap for closure, a shoulder strap and a flower & button embellishment!  It’s quite a pretty bag! 

We’ve also strung many letter-beaded bracelets, hand embroidered hearts and lettering onto fabric, sketched, AND we’ve been to our local museum for the Annual Christmas Tree Festival, (which I have gone to for yeeeeaaarrrs), drove around to look at the Christmas lights, shopped for furniture, drank hot chocolate, watched Christmas movies and MORE!  (I’m going to need a vacation from my weekend…lol) 

Hoping to work on my December Daily later tonight/tomorrow….I will post pictures soon! 


whoooo are you thankful for?

Happy Thanksgiving!  I hope that everyone has had a great Thanksgiving, full of lots of delicious food and time spent with loved-ones. 

Well, as you can see above, this is the completed project that I made my lil miss hoot & her hunky hoot friend for. 

Here’s how:

  • First I gathered a few assorted pieces of cardstock.
  • Using my Cricut Expression, “Bags, Tags, Boxes & More” cartridge, I cut a bunch of “popcorn containers” (6 1/2 inches)
  • Using my bone folder stick (or whatever it’s called), I folded all of the sides & flaps.
  • The absolute best way to seal the edges are to use one of these adhesive applicators.  This is the perfect size to run along the edges.
  • After assembling the container, I simply press all of the flaps to make sure that the adhesive has stuck. 
  • Next I cut a length of ribbon to go around the container and then one to use as a handle. 
  • The ribbon that will go around the container, I ran through my sticker-maker.  I find that it is the best adhesive for ribbons. 
  • Using the computer, I printed up this little sentiment to place on the backside.  I wanted to give these to different people in our lives that we are very thankful for.  I wanted to be able to tell them that we are thankful for them.  I simply attached this with double-sided tape.  (I used a cotton-swab to ink around the edges a little.)
  • Using the cute little hoot tags that I had made previously, I attached them to the front.  You can use whatever adhesive you prefer.  I used double-sided tape and a little glue. 
  • I filled the bottom 1/3 with a few Hershey Kisses.  (Because they are yummy & because I needed something to help weight it down and make sure it would stand once I added the homemade chocolate lollipops.)  (Both the Kisses & lollipops are peanut-free.) 
  • I then filled it with crinkled paper, used for gift-bags.  I chose brown so that it would look like a nest…lol…  
  • It’s hard to see in the picture below, but I they are homemade chocolate lollipops, in the shape of owls.  (Very simple to make.) 
  • Here are the owls as they are placed in the container. 
  • Below is the finished chocolate owl bouquet. 

Who are we thankful for?  We’re thankful for YOU! 


sweets for the sweet

this is another bag that i made with my cricut. 

i made it for my dear SIL…she’s been going through some heartache right now. 

i played on the word “sweet”. 

i made the front flower embellishment stamping the words “sweets for the sweet”, 

included some hershey kisses, which are sweet… 

and i also put together some Bible verses that i hope will encourage her…sweet words & promises of God. 

sweets for the sweet! 


dd 2008 finished!


finally finished my december daily 2008.  better late, than never, right? 

went to a crop last night, (thanks for coming, Stef…i would have been all alone without you!), 

my goal was to finish my DD 2008. 

i would have liked to have made them a little more detailed, more embellishments etc, but hey, at least i finished it! 

i have already bought my supplies for my DD 2009! 

if you want to see the layouts close up, visit my gallery at sistv