Friday, December 02, 2011

Photo Card

Merry Bright Greeting Holiday
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Wednesday, February 09, 2011

A Crazy-busy thing Called Life

From my post on facebook on 2-3-11. Just in case you missed it.....
After much thought and prayer, i made the decision (one of the hardest decisions ever) that it would be best for me to be a stay at home mom for at least a couple years.  
I had not made my decision until yesterday and It was not clear to me that it was the right decision, until abt 2:00 pm yesterday afternoon. i can see now, that this is the direction that God is leading me in. I often question why things happen but as i sit back and think about the recent things that have happened i can see His hands at work in every part of it. His plan becomes more and more clear to me every day. 
Everyone knows how much i love my job and why this has been such a hard decision for me. There has never been a day where i woke up and said "ugh i dont want to go to work". I love what i do and the people i work with.
These next 6 weeks will be very bitter-sweet for me for many reasons, but i know that i need to do whats best for my children.
I am not sure what God has in store for me years down the road but i can hope that Kellys will be in the plans at some point. I dont want to say good bye to kellys, instead i want to say "see you later".   :)
2-7-11- "Mommy, I liked it when you weren't weren't so stressed out all the time, and you always had a smile on your face." --my kids.

So, I guess they are saying I am kinda a grouch!? lol. It is a bit stressful to get up at 4:45 am, get all of us ready for school and work, out the door by 6am, kids dropped off at the Rec Center by 6:30 and to the babysitters house to drop off the baby. I make it to work by 7:15 or so. I get off around 4:30-5:00, head to the babysitters house, then to the rec center to get the kids and fight traffic all the way home. I usually do not make it home till around 6:30pm or after.  I take the dogs out, get the baby's diaper bag ready for the next day, wash bottles, make the kids dinner, clean up a little bit, do home work with Jordan and Emma, take a shower and sometimes I am able to make it to bed by 9pm. (on a good night) There is no quality time spent with the kids at all (other than doing homework). Life was crazy and fast paced before the baby and now it's out of control, busy! And it doesn't help that Gabe is only home a couple of hours total during the week.

I have 5 more weeks until i stop working, and life will settle down a bit. I am still so nervous about my decision to stay home, but i need to keep trusting God. It wouldn't be such a hard decision if I didn't love my job so much. Not many people can say that they absolutely love their job like i do; BUT time with my kids is much more valuable and, that is what i keep reminding myself. Hopefully something will work out where i can still keep my job part time and then go back to full time in a few years.

Here are a few Little Things for today.

1. Sitting by Don at work and listening to his crazy rants and raves, he is SO funny!
2. Emma's "i love you"notes to me.
3. Still learning new things at work even though i am leaving.
4. Emma reading the baby numerous books after a long day of school and "daycare". And keeping the baby busy for a bit while i get things done around the house.
5. My mommy's love, help and support over these last few tough months. I wouldn't have made it without her help. Thank you, Mommy!
6. Big smiles from my baby boy.   
7. Gail being Gail.
8. "ahhh, Mommy!!! Norton keeps updating my computer while i am trying to do stuff!!!!" -Jacob. "Ummm, WHO is Norton?? Some guy???" --Emma.
9. Jacob's vocabulary. The words he uses shocks me sometimes.. lol he is too smart!
10. The "punch bug" bug game. Emma never plays and never really pays attention to the game, and all of a sudden one day she blurted out so loud "punch bug, punch bug, punch bug!!!!!!!!!" and got all three of the punch bugs that the boys fight over everyday on Story Road. The car was so quiet until she shouted out punch bug. It was like she had just caught on to the game after all these months of the boys playing EVERYDAY!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Is it Friday already?

I have to say this week has gone by SO fast! I am sure it has something to do with me going back to work on Monday and my maternity leave ending.  :(

 I tried something today that i have really wanted to do for a while now. i have always been a "smart" shopper but never to this extreme and i hope to learn more and more to become even more extreme!!!

I sat down this afternoon and went through my coupons.  i figured if there were a ton of other people out there getting so many great deals and having such great "stock piles" then i should be able to figure it out and do it too!

so i sat down for about 2 hours.... sorting, checking ads, putting together different senarios, ect.

Since i have not invested in a nifty coupon binder i put each senario and transaction in different envelopes with each shopping list written on the front of the envelope.  easy-peasy! all i had to do was look at each list on the front of the envelope, get the items, head to the check out and hand the cashier the envelopes at check out. no shuffling through coupons (no dropping them all down the isles, ect) i knew what i was going into the store for and thats all i came out with!

so here is what i got at Publix! i know it doesn't look like much but buying diapers and formula is comparable to buying diamonds and gold!!! small but pricey! hehe :)
I used store (publix), manufacturer, and target coupons.  Oh, and i also had some Similac $5 checks.

3 cases of diapers (on sale at Publix for 19.99)
(There is a coupon in the Publix ad for $3 off Huggies, plus i used target coupons and manufactuer coupons. )
2 Jumbo Huggies Little Snugglers
3 Wet wipes
1 wet wipe "refill" pack.
2 Bottles of A1 sauce
2 things of mustard
2 Campbells Soup
1 Large can of Similac formula (regular 23.49)
2 Cans of Similac formula (regular 14.49 each)
2 Gallons of Nursery water
1 Finish dishwashing tablets
1 Cascade dishwashing tablets
1 Smiliac 8 oz ready to feed individual bottles
1 Beachnut baby rice cereal

Grand Total? $196.65
total saved? $125.85
out of pocket? $70.80
Not bad, but i am sure i can do better, and I can't wait to try again!

So, question............What was your biggest savings shopping trip? What store? And how much did you save?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Time sure does fly!

As I was going through the baby's clothes i ran across an outfit that looked very familiar. It was the same outfit that Gabriel came home from the hospital in at 48 hours old, only in size "3 month". Look at how much he has grown!
Five days old (size preemie) and  9.5 weeks old

All good things come to an end

So, other than all of the sickness and bad news that has hit since i have been on maternity leave,  i have enjoyed being home more than i could ever try to begin to explain. My days of sleeping in, cuddling with my baby boy till 10 am; countless hours of sitting in the rocking chair talking and just admiring my precious baby; no need to wear make up or get dressed up because there is no need to leave the house; nights of staying up to whatever time i want; being home to take care of my sick children; and not having to scramble to figure out baby sitters on school holidays are quickly ending. On Monday, Jan 31, 2011 I will go back to the crazy, stressful, fast-paced lifestyle that we lead before Baby G was born. We will go back  to being away from our home from 6:00am to almost 7:00 pm. The kids will be back to LONG days at the rec. center and school, and the baby will be with Sandra more than he will be with me.  But, i am trying to stay positive. My four babies and i will get through these hard times.
  Jan 31 will be a very emotional day for me. For now, i am loving every last second of being at home with my children.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Thursday Jan 20, 2010 "Todays Little Things"

 With all of the negative things that have been happening lately and me being stressed to the max, I thought I would sit down and think of some positive things...

1. A new customizable blog background, ect.
2. The baby fussing ALLLLL day, wanting me to hold him, comfort him ect. Gabe holding him for five minutes and him crying the whole time (he wants his mommy!!) until he put Barney on Youtube.... the baby perked right up, stopped crying and watched the whole video clip and then started talking... i think he likes Barney!
3. Chicken cooking in the crock pot.
4. Wonderful nurses at our Dr. office.
5. Being off work to take care of all of my sick babies.
6. Hearing about someones "New life/new relationship". I am happy for them!
7. Gabriel growing and growing. He's now 11 pounds at 2 months. ( eek i forgot to ask what his percentages were!!)
8. Store brands that are just as good but cheaper!!! (store brand spaghettios are SO good!)
9. My Mommas help.
10. $5 formula checks from Similac that came in the mail. (love them!!!)
11. Last Sunday's church service. It was the first time I had been to church (period) AND understood/totally got every single word the pastor was talking about. I was glued to him the entire service.  It was a great message that really made me think about things.  I enjoyed it.
12. Learning to do things one-handed  since the baby is requiring my constant attention. I have cooked dinner, made bottles, done the dishes, laundry (not folded- but loading, unloading and switching from washer to dryer)  and much more.... all while holding the baby.  I can tell he is not feeling well at all.  Guess who is in my lap now?  :)

Our house has been hit pretty hard this season with sickness after sickness. My kids had a cough but were ok.... Then Isabella came up here sick and after that it just snowballed from there. First Isabella, then Ashley, then Gabe, Then baby Gabe. we were doing better and slowly getting better once Emy and Isa went back to Miami and then WHAM!!! Emma gets a fever out of no where and tested positive for the flu. Two days later, Jacob got a fever. I know its only a matter of time before it's Jordan's turn. We are spending so much money on meds, and doctors visits. I think we will all be getting a flu shot next year.  ;)

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Tuesday 1-4-10

Ahhh such a peaceful Tuesday. So much to be thankful and blessed with so many things.
1. Gabe quitting smoking.
2. Breakfast at the Ocoee Cafe and seeing my Mom and Melinda.
3. Melinda seeing Baby G for the first time (other than the hospital right after he was born).
4. Surviving the car line.
5. Asking Jacob if he has homework and him saying "no, but i would like to do some research." (just for his own personal education, not needed for school)
6. Jordan laying with Molly for long periods of time just talking to her as if she is talking back to him.
7. Emma being a big help with the baby in the mornings when we are all getting ready before school.
7.5. Random "i looove you"s from Gail. 
8. Everyone being well enough for the massive amount of "sick stuff" to be put away.
9. Having a counter top again...
10. Having the kids at home RIGHT after school and them not having to have such a long day at daycare and school.
11. A visit from Gabe's parents.
12. All of the beautiful moments captured in each one of the following pictures. 
 6.5 weeks old

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Tuesdays's Little Things

1. Not having a schedule, no where to go and no plans and not even knowing what day it is. I could have sworn it was Wednesday today. I even told the kids a couple times that it was Wednesday.
2. Enjoying the couple of yummy (healthy and not so healthy) drinks made in my blender. The coffee mocha was the best!
3. Finishing making the kids smoothies just before the blender broke. Glad it held out till i was finished or else i would have had some disappointed kids!
4. Clean towels fresh out of the dryer.
5. My mom bringing me dinner.
6. The way a fresh vacuumed floor changes the look and feel of a room.
7. Jordan giving me a BIG hug on Christmas and thanking me for all of his gifts.
8. Having another adult person around to talk to instead of being in the house with kids all day! (thanks ashley!)
9. The way a child looks all snuggled up in their "blankie" on the couch sucking their thumb. So peaceful.
10. My sister in law (Roz) coming over to spend time with the baby.
11. Formula from my Mother in law!
12. Emy telling me she likes my food. (she thinks i am good cook! :)
13. Baby G not having a bottle from midnight to after 6 am.
14. Anything dipped in ranch. (and 3 cheese ranch!)
15. Blueberry salad from Matt's mom.
16. Taking the Christmas tree down and feeling like the living room is less cluttered.
17. Watching Little Man chase the light reflections on the wall. This dog has issues. lol.
18. Emma standing up for modesty when Gabe's girls are here. I never notice it as much until Emy and Isa are here and i see the differences in them and her. I am proud of Emma for knowing how a LITTLE girl should dress, talk and act. And knowing how important it is to dress modestly.
19. The kids oovoo-ing w Ashley and Skylar.
20. Having Ashley here to hold the baby when he's fussy so that i can get things done.
21. Emy reading better and better every time she comes to visit.
22. Scrabble with ashley on our iphone/ipod touch. And being able to play when we aren't even in the same house.
23. Jacob spending more time out of his room and being social. His personality is so fun.
24. Snacks after the kids go to bed because you don't want to share... hehe
25. Emma and Emy wearing matching outfits.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas 2010

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! This Christmas was a lot of fun. My kids were very blessed this year.
We had a pretty organized morning (yay!). Well as "organized" as a morning could be with a 5 week old, 5 year old, 6 year old, 7 year old, 8 year old and a 10 year old all anxious to open their gifts.

  The girls woke up first. I was able to "grab" them before they went out to the living room to see if "Santa" came or not.. I had them take baths while I woke the boys up and then had them bathe and get dressed.

That was always the worst part of Christmas day when I was younger. I always hated to have to stop playing with my new toys to take a bath and get ready for the day, so i wanted to go ahead and get it out of the way.

Matt had great timing and got here just as the girls were waking up. he was able to bring his gifts by the tree before they all came out to the living room.

Of course, we carried on our tradition and had cinnamon rolls for breakfast. This was a tradition that my mom started with my sisters and i when we were kids and it was something that i have carried on for my kids as well.

This year we did one "big" item for each of the kids (of course they have to share those big items).  :)

Jacob got a laptop

 Jordan was so funny when he opened his big gift.. he was shaking with excitement!
Emma got a Wii as well. (we got two Wii's for them so that we could put one Wii in the girls' room and one in the boy's room.)
 Emy and Isabella both got DSi's. They were so excited because when they were here during the summer they wanted to play with Emma's, now they have their very own!
Is it just me or does Emy look like Selinda Gomez in this picture?  :) she is so beautiful!
Matt got Emma a cupcake full of play desserts. The girls love to put Grandmother's aprons on and pretend they are waitresses just like Grandmother.
Isa with her new PJ's

Jacob and the ripstick Matt bought him. Have you ever attempted to get on one of these things? I guess its a 2000's skateboard, but only a million point five times harder!
Jordan and the skateboard that Jacob and Daddy got him. 
Shopping for my kids at Christmas is never easy. They have never given us a list of things that they want. I have stopped asking them because anytime i have ever asked them what they want their response has always been "i will be happy with whatever you get me".  One year Emma added "as long as i get girl toys" i guess she was worried she would get all "boy toys". ?? lol. But anyway, Jacob had been trying to save up his money so that he could get this game. He had been wanting it since it came out, so he was SUPER excited when he opened this gift.

Matt bought Jordan a "small" pocket knife. We both thought this would be a good "starter" pocket knife. Jacob has one and we both felt that Jordan would be ready for a smaller one at this age. He was so cute all day, he kept pulling it out of his pocket showing everyone. 

The kids finished opening their gifts, they got numerous games for the Wii and PS3, books, clothes, pj's ect. and then we packed up and headed for Grandmother's house.
Baby G looked so cute in his little Gymboree Christmas outfit that Mrs. Christine bought for him. 

Once we got to Grandmothers house the kids were so excited to see all of the presents. Grandmother spoiled all 7 of the Grand kids this year. Thank you Grandmother!!!
Oh and i have to tell you about the yummy Christmas dinner she worked so hard on. She made the best meatballs and lasagna (another Christmas day tradition) only i think this batch of lasagna was by far the best she has ever made!
The best Grandmother ever!
Emma and Skylar (my adorable niece) opening their gifts.
Tony Hawk Wii game. This game is so cool. Check out the video for it here.
Emy about to open her gifts.
All three of the girls got the Hello Kitty DS games and cases. They all three LOVE Hello Kitty.
Jordan and Jacob both got remote control 4 wheelers. 
Emma and some of her gifts from Grandmother and Grandpa Bill. 

This year the adults all drew names. I got Bills name and he got a Bat warmer. Mommy drew Melinda's name and she got clothes. Amanda drew Ashleys name and she put in money towards her ipod touch. Melinda drew Gabes name and he got Versace Cologne. Bill drew my name and i got money for work clothes. Ashley drew Mommy and she got a Gators shirt and a knife set. And Gabe got Amanda's name. Now i have to tell you how we were all jealous that Gabe drew AMANDA's name. We all know that Gabe buys the best gifts. So what did Amanda get? She got a leather COACH wallet!!!
Isn't it pretty??
So after we were all finished opening gifts the kids headed outside to ride their Skateboards, ripstick, and bikes. (Jordan and Emma also got  new bikes)

After we left Grandmothers the fun didn't end there. We headed back home and the kids were ready to set  up their Wii's and play with their new stuff. the girls played Just Dance 2

All day i could help but to count all of my blessings and to think of the American Military families who were not as fortunate this year. My thoughts were with the Military families who had to spend Christmas without family members because they are away serving our country.

I hope everyone had a great Christmas, and I hope everyone has a safe New Years.