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I have discovered it is really hard to be Queen in a household with 3 princesses! Somebody is always borrowing my tiara! Well in between hunting my stuff down I am the proclaimed Queen in the Land of fluff (where my husband swears one day that he will die from glitter lung (you get the picture!) Besides that I am a dieting, exercising, crafting, biblestudying kind of girl.
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Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Taking Christmas back!

Last year I had the privilege of being asked to talk to a wonderful group of ladies, about how our family has done Christmas, keeping our focus on Christ, and not on just material gain. I decided that I would post my suggestions and ideas. Some are my own, others evolved from some suggestions we had read, others were sparked and set off by watching a simple commercial about nothing related to Christ. However I feel that God is the God of creation and creativity and I do believe that any of these ideas can be used to help bless you and yours through the upcoming December. I hope you find at least one idea to help you teach your children or help yourself not get caught up in the rat race of a material Christmas.

I believe the Christmas season provides us as mothers, as parents, a wonderful opportunity to pass our faith on to our children. The holiday season allows us to take the time in our daily activities to impress upon our children’s heart that our God is God. How do I do this you might ask?

Well the bible says in Duet 6:4-9

4Listen, Israel! The LORD our God is the only true God! [b] 5So love the LORD your God with all your heart, soul, and strength. 6Memorize his laws 7and tell them to your children over and over again. Talk about them all the time, whether you're at home or walking along the road or going to bed at night, or getting up in the morning. 8Write down copies and tie them to your wrists and foreheads to help you obey them. 9Write these laws on the door frames of your homes and on your town gates.

Worship Only the LORD

Moses gives a lot of advice to us in this chapter on how we are to raise our children to love the Lord God our.

*In the book “Parenting beyond your capacity” it states “Moses is fighting for the something that is more important than a lifestyle or practice. He is fighting for the hearts of those who will follow. If you want to pass on a Legacy to the next generation it HAS TO BE TRANSFERRED RELATIONALLY!”

That’s why in Duet 6 Moses gives specific about the mundane, daily things in our lives- like eating, commuting, our downtime. How we spend those moments with our kids matter! What type of legacy do you want to leave your children??

This book I just quoted “parenting beyond your capacity” states “know what really matters. It would be heartbreaking if your children enjoy the benefits and the prosperity, of it really doesn’t matter what our kids know if they don’t a better lifestyle, live in a land flowing with milk and honey, and become experiential rich but never really know God.”

Well what does this look like, and how do we implement this into our lives?

Well this can look differently for each family, based on the age of your children’s, the sex of your kids, their likes and interest.

Here are some ways to implement a Christ focused Christmas.

If you have smaller children:

*it may be as simple as gluing cotton balls to a picture of a sheep and talking about the animals in the stable the night baby Jesus was born, or talking about the shepherds that were in the field the night baby Jesus was born watching the sheep.

*If they are really little it may mean practicing the animal sounds of the animal in the stable the night of Jesus’s birth.

*decorate wrapping paper together, or “wrap” a gift together. Talk about how the wisemen brought gifts to baby Jesus, or depending on the age of your children talk about how God gave us the gift of his son.

*talk about how God sent an angel to Joseph and told him that Mary was going to have a baby boy and what to name the baby. Talk to your child about what they were going to be named if they were born the opposite sex, talk about how you came up with their name.

*read the story of the birth of Christ, -make a baby book for baby Jesus of drawings of the different people and animals that were in the story. Get out your child’s baby book, and look at the pictures and talk about who came to see them at the hospital when they were born.

*Talk about how excited everyone was to see them when they were born, talk about how excited the shepherds and the wise men must have been to see baby Jesus.

*eat pepperidge farm gingerbread man and talk about they people in the story who came to see baby Jesus when he was born.

*decorate “Wise Men” hats and play in them. While coloring, stamping, or putting on stickers talk about the wise men who came to see baby Jesus. How they saw the star in the sky.

*purchase “playable” or at least “touchable” nativity sets for your kids to handle

*we had a manger that my dad had built that we brought out each Dec. with a very special doll – that only came out in the month of Dec. which was “baby Jesus”

*play christian DVDs’s about the meaning of Christmas.

*have a birthday party for baby Jesus

*eat animal crackers for snack and talk about the animals in the stable the night baby Jesus was born.

*make, color or decorate angel pictures and talk about the angel that appeared to the shepherds in the the field telling them the “Good News” about Jesus.

*put “angel” or “shepherd’s” dress us clothes in your dress up area for the the month of December.

*make star ornaments and talk about the star that lead the wise men to baby Jesus

*play hide and go seek, looking for the “Largest Star” – hide a bunch of stars around the kids to look for. Just like the wisemen had to seek and follow the stars to find baby Jesus.

*play the quiet game, like Zechariah who could not speak. (Luke 1:57-80)

**Now a word of caution here—Don’t become so “attached” to what you are doing that you can not move on once your child has grown past that activity (manger story)

**Remember - - “Why” we do something does not change, however “How” we do something MUST change.

--What does that mean, or what does that transition looks like to older kids?

Older kids:

*baking session making cookies in different shapes from the story, - talk about it.

*downloading the “star app” on your ipod/ipad and going outside and looking at the stars and talk about how the wisemen saw the stars and followed the star to find Jesus.

*each child gets a miniature manger and yellow strips of paper to write down the “kind things” they do for others, to help prepare our hearts for baby Jesus on Christmas. (This helps combat the case of the gimme’s me) Hopefully by Christmas the manger will be full.

*refuse to shorten the name “Christmas” explain to your kids why we find the abbreviation XMAS offensive.

*celebrate advent – have the kids participate

*make an origami nativity set as a family

*make a yarn nativity set as a family

*talk about the family tree of Jesus. And talk about your own family tree.

*talk about when Gabriel came to tell Mary about her having the son of God, how she trembled. What have we been afraid of that turned into a blessing?

*Ask your kids what is the most meaningful thing you do during the holiday season? Why, did they answer the way they did? You might find what speaks to the heart of each of your children or different things, because they are different.

Any age kids:

*listening to christian Christmas music

*read the “REAL” Christmas story as a family on Christmas Eve/Christmas Day instead of the night before Christmas or in addition to. *reading christian Christmas books

*participate if your family chooses in an angel tree, or give to a need, - but if so – Include the kids make them shop with your, or if older have them be in charge of the shopping, wrapping etc.. Even have your children give a portion of their allowance for the purchase of the gift. If your family has decided ahead of time on this.


What to do about Santa?

It’s a Big, Tough, Question! That can only be answered by your and your husband!

For us personally, this what we decide to do and why.


1 gift, and stockings.

(we try not to over decorate with Santa, we do have the kids picture taken each year with Santa out at the Christmas Train)

**We do not talk and “assign” Godly attributes to Santa (he knows when you are good, and bad, and he sees you when he is sleeping)

BALANCE is our key.

*The wish list

* then focus conversation on what they are giving, or what “we are giving” instead of talking non stop about what they want.

Now I do want to take a minute and remind you all.

About the Star in the sky that the wisemen saw and followed to baby Jesus.

*we are called to be lights in this world.

Matthew 5:14-16:

14You are like light for the whole world. A city built on top of a hill cannot be hidden, 15and no one would light a lamp and put it under a clay pot. A lamp is placed on a lampstand, where it can give light to everyone in the house. 16Make your light shine, so that others will see the good that you do and will praise your Father in heaven.

I am sure your family, is like my family, your neighborhood is like my neighborhood, your friends are like my friends, and your kids friends families are like my kids friends families. –Not everyone knows God personally and some are trying awful hard to run from him, and other may have never been introduced to him other than in movies with the funny description as “sweet baby Jesus” well let me be clear Thank Goodness for baby Jesus but thank goodness baby Jesus grew up and died on the cross for our sins!

Now some of your might be breaking out into a nervous sweat thinking I am going to encourage you to walk up and hit people over the head – No!! I am not me personally the only real kind of sharing that I have seen that has made a difference in someone’s life is the that little thing we mentioned at the first “Relational” sharing!!

So what does that mean? Well take a deep breath I am merely suggesting that you have your home decorated in such a manner that it would witness for you. (the nativity set we talked about, maybe an open bible on a table turned to the Christmas story, etc)

A peaceful atmosphere of love that permeates your home. Keeping that in mind

*How are you during this holiday season?? Are you Joyful?

Are you peaceful?

Are you content?

Remember that you can not share what you do not have! So please be intentional and set aside alone time with God this holiday season!!!

Keep Christ as a priority and keep everything in perspective.

Remember there is no such thing as Wonder women. Only amazing women made by a Wonderful, Mighty God, Lord of all creation!!

And because I am female I know! I know! How crazy we can get about anything!! Anything!!

So I would like to read to you a poem reworded from 1 Corinthians 13

"First Corinthians 13 : The Christmas Version"

"If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child; Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the spouse; Love is kind, even when harried and tired.

Love doesn't envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.

Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way, but is thankful they are there to be in the way.

Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can't.

Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.

Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust. But giving the gift of LOVE will endure."

May the joy of Advent bring God’s love into you life in a special way this Christmas! Seen below is proof we can all get along as we share love with one another!

Remember a priority is simply a pre-decision about your time!

So I encourage all your ladies to go home and during nap time, or your quiet time today –pray about your calendar and how you want to spend your time this December. Pray about the legacy you want to leave your children and those around you this holiday season.

Thank you for having me, and I wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas

**This is the presentation that I posted last year. Of course my kids are another year older and I am trying to come up with some new creative approaches to help them and my husband and me to stay focused on Christ. I will post more on those as the month continues on.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

faux wrought iron window treatment

Well this pin caught my eye the other day on pinterest. (if you are on pinterest, look for me!)

I have an octagon shaped window that I never know what to do with.

However, when I saw this pin and went over to Blog "imperfectly perfect" http://tali-schiffer-oren.blogspot.com/2010/09/home-work-tp-flowerproject.html

I thought I could do this in that window.
So I started collecting toilet paper rolls. I marked off 1/2 inches then cut into strips.

Then I went to town glueing 5 pieces together to make flowers.

Then i glued all the flowers together and spray painted them black. To give the look of wrought iron.

Then placed the creation in the window (I placed it in between the window and the screen to hold it in place)

I love it! It gives the window character and it only cost me the cost of the black spray paint.

What have you been inspired to make lately?

I know creating something gives me great pleasure and helps me deal with stress, you should give it a try. Hope everyone has a great day!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Free, Well Thank you!

Well today I went to the hip little area in Tulsa known as Cherry street. That is where LuluLemons show room is located at here in Tulsa, Ok.

Above is a picture of the store front. Notice the cute flowers in front of the window.

LuluLemons is a store that sells athletic apparel along with offering free yoga classes to encourage an active lifestyle.

The workers even post their goals, for example: take spin class twice a week, etc.. This store even offers a free rooftop yoga class at sunset when the weather is agreeable.
Well I was nervous about going in today. I won, yes won! A free tank top from the store during a drawing for participants at a Body Pump launch party. As most of you know I have lost 60 pounds since January. (I have been holding this weight the last month! Ugh! I have 40 left to go). After I won the top I went on line and saw the size chart, there xl is a size 12. Which I am not -I am a loose 16 or a tight 13/14. I was a little scared of going in and being laughed out of the store. ( I could hear the mocking in my head) but I sucked it up, and told the very nice sales lady (I am horrible with names!) that I was fearful that I might not "fit" into the tank. She was SO kind, she said she thought this other style of tank that had a built in bra and offered more support might just work. Did I mention that she offered to swap out my win of tank style 1, for tank style 2.

I will be honest, I have not bought a workout tank for myself yet. I tend to stick to yoga pants and a t shirt. However, I really like the comfort & support of this tank!
I will look even better in this tank in 10 more pounds down! Ahh! That tummy is getting smaller but slowly! So 10 more pounds is what I hope to loose for this calendar year, then tackle the last 30 pounds to make my goal weight in 2012.

At times like when the scale won't budge I remind myself where I have come from.

New years eve dec 31,2010

Here I am at 222.5 pounds

Here I am at 202 pounds

Here I am at 189 pounds

I look forward to working out and burning calories in my new Lululemon tank!

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Thursday, November 17, 2011

One holiday at a time

I enjoy the holiday of Thanksgiving. A time set aside each year to remember what we have to be thankful for. To pause a second in our crazy world, with our crazy schedules and take a deep breath and be thankful, count our blessings and let gratitude seep into our hearts and minds! Wow, the feeling of contentment and being blessed is overwhelming.

However in today's marketing blitz the need to sell us items for Christmas makes many stores overlook Thanksgiving. Which I feel cause people to "feel" stressed, panic, and overwhelmed with "agh! I need to get stuff, do stuff, more, more, more!". That is why I respect and appreciate Nordstrom refusal to jump off a cliff, just because other retail stores are (putting Christmas stuff out even before Halloween!).

- how different would Christmas be celebrated if people went into that season if the year with a thankful heart. How do you keep Thanksgiving?

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Don't we all want to feel appreciated sometimes? I know I do. As a mom, nobody usually comes home and thanks me for putting up laundry, or cleaning the toilets. (If your kids notice and tell you thank you please feel free to leave me advice in the comment section!).

As much as we all love a kind word of appreciation, how freely do we give or hand out thank you's? I know I am guilty of getting busy and forgetting to let others know that I appreciate at them.

The amazing thing about a kind word or sweet jester is that it does not have to be BIG or grand to make are day. Below is a photo of a sweet basket I found for me at church where I volunteer once a week. How very very sweet. The basket had my favorite pop, favorite candy, and a cute notepad along with a sweet thank you card. I tell you it made my day!! So it got me thinking, have I made anyone else's day lately? Well that is my challenge over the next few weeks is to try to find one person each week to bless with gratitude. How about you? Is there anyone that you should tell how much you appreciate them? Do you have a favorite way to tell others "thank you"? If you do I would love to hear about it!!

Isn't the Lara the lady I volunteer for a sweetie! It was so unexpected to find a sweet goodie basket left for me I wish you could have seen my face lit up with a big ol'e grin!

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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Starting body combat

Oh, I have started a new class to try to shock my muscles. Oh, they are shocked all right!! For me it has been an awkward experience. I have never tried kickboxing before or anything remotely like it!!

- so here is a photo of how i "feel" I look during class. (you do feel strong during class. You feel in charge of your health)

However the above photo is how I really look during class. Sweaty, sucking air. It's fun, fast paced and HARD!!!!

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Tuesday, November 8, 2011


Hair has been the focus if my household this week. The oldest daughter decided to go brown this weekend. She has been blonde, then as her hair darkened up "assisted" blonde with highlights. But she decided to see what she would look like as a brunette.

The youngest has found the benefit of interest and enjoys looking at my pins to pick out how she wants me to do her hair for the next day. Below is a picture of the heart pigtails she wore yesterday and coordinated her outfit with it.

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