Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tomorrow...

Tonight, I tucked Amy in for her last night as a four-year-old. Tomorrow, my baby girl will wake up as a five-year-old. I can't believe five years have come and gone!

I'm reminiscing tonight and looking through old pictures.


I must admit, it was a little tough in the beginning. : )














But we all fell in love with our Amy Beth.

(6 months and 19 months)




Where would these two be without each other?







(One and two years old)











(Two and three years old)














Sweet dreams, Amy Beth, my little four-year-old for one more night! Tomorrow, we'll celebrate you!




My Prize Came in the Mail

Do you remember this post about my toy organizational woes? This is the book I won for participating in that Swap and Hop. I was so excited to get my prize in the mail yesterday.
I love winning things. : ) So far I haven't had any luck with the bloggy giveaway carnival, but I'm hoping that one of the thousands of giveaways I entered might still have hope of winning. : ) I'd love to hear if any of you won something last week during the carnival.

This morning, I read the first chapter of this book, and it is already marked up with pen and highlighter. I have been so behind and overwhelmed lately in my housework. I keep the front room tidy in case people stop by, but I am always so worried someone might need to venture beyond the safety zone and see what a mess our house has become. I think it has a lot to do with my pregnancy and lack of energy, but it also has to do with time wasting and a lack of routine. I'm really hoping this book will be a help. It already has me thinking in a new way.
Here's some quotes that stuck out to me from the first chapter:
"Schedules can be a guide or your GPS, but they should not be your boss. Sometimes they do more harm than good, especially for the mom who feels defeated if she gets even slightly off schedule."
"Being a mom with absolutely no routine isn't effective either. You're constantly sidetracked by the phone and the Internet, and at the end of the day you may have connected with a lot of people but you haven't gotten any work done. No, a more balanced approach is to find your own flexible routine that allows for worthwhile interruptions."
Guilty! I swing from rigid schedules that leave no room for people or interruptions to no routine at all, thinking I can just figure it out as I go through the day. I really need this balance.
"It will help to train the little people in our lives to help us, not just because we want to see them work, but because it frees the whole family to enjoy life more."
This is where I could use advice. Anyone have advice on how they train their kids to help more without battles and meltdowns? My girls are sweethearts, but they get as overwhelmed as I do and sending them upstairs to 'clean up that disaster' doesn't work. I need to do a better job of training them and being consistent.
"We're aiming to (1) find the rhythm that is ours- a flexible routine that allows for interruptions from God and ministry to others, and (2) seek to set the bar where it works for our families and lifestyles."
I'm motivated and excited. I needed to do a shift in my motivation for wanting to be organized- not to be perfect or have a spotless, enviable house all the time, but to have a lifestyle where I can always be available for the people I love and the things God has planned for the day.
"Sometimes others see what we cannot. Are there relatives or friends in your life who seem to have these areas under control? Don't be shy or feel you are a failure if you ask for their advice. We are meant to live in connection with one another."
OK....organized friends (and husband) the comments section is open for tips from you pros. : )

Monday, April 28, 2008

No More 4:00 Oprah Dates Part 2

If you are interested in Part One of this series of blog posts, click here.

Before you read this post, please watch this video. It is the post immediately below this one.

I don't want to go any farther without first saying the following:

1. I am not anti-Oprah the person. I am against the message and philosophy she is sharing with the world. It is so easy to be deceived. I sincerely hope and pray she will recognize the emptiness of her message and the evil behind it, and will embrace Truth instead.

2. I know that this video is overly dramatic and may lose credibility because of the presentation, but it is the best video available for giving a short summary of Oprah's beliefs and the teachings she is promoting. There are many other videos that are longer, more in-depth, and less theatrical, but they are so long I'm afraid I'd lose your interest. : )

3. I am motivated by love in writing these blog posts, not a need to be right.

God is Jealous of Me?
There are so many points in this video to talk about, but the first thing that struck my heart was Oprah's confusion over the idea of God being a jealous God.

The first time I watched the video, I yelled out at my computer, "No, Oprah, God isn't jealous of you, He's jealous for you."

That's why I am writing these posts. Not because I want to be right, or slam Oprah, but because I know God is jealous for all of our hearts. He loves us individually and wants all of us to know Him. as He is and as He has defined Himself, not as some man or some talk show host tells you He should be defined.

You know what? I'm jealous, too! I'm jealous for the God I love. I can't stand to see Him misrepresented.

I'm jealous for the people I love and for seekers everywhere. I can't stand to see deception like this fed to those people I love, and to hurting people searching for a real answer. This is harsh but true. The beliefs covered in this video will lead you down a path of destruction right off a cliff. The truth of the Bible will give you abundant life now and hope for all Eternity. This is what I want for the people I love.

So, yes, Oprah. God is a jealous God.

It's true: The lover of your soul is jealous for you.

Love,

Oprah

My latest blog post is in response to this video.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

I Have a Winner to Announce : )

I really enjoyed this giveaway. It was so fun to keep checking my blog for new comments. I can't thank you enough for the participation and creative names. Some of the names cracked me up! They were very entertaining. : ) I now have so many to choose from, I'm having a hard time deciding what I'll be calling my nursing covers.

And now for the winner.........

Congratulations goes to Felicia! It sounds like she is a very deserving winner. She is a home-schooling mom of three, with Baby #4 on the way. She also works with a non-profit group that provides educational resources to the deaf community. I hope that in all of her busyness, this nursing cover will be a blessing! Stop by her blog and congratulate her for me. : )

I'll be contacting Felicia to let her know that she is the winner. If I don't hear back from her within a week, I'll draw a new winner.

Thank you again for the fun and support. If you'd like to order a nursing cover, let me know via email at everydaybecky@gmail.com

Giveaway Ends Tonight

My giveaway will be ending at 8:00 (PST) tonight. There is still a little time to enter if you didn't get a chance. I will post the winner tomorrow morning. Thank you for the great name ideas!

Friday, April 25, 2008

No More 4:00 Oprah Dates

As many afternoons as we could pull it off, my friend Daiquiri and I would take a break from Mommy chores, let the kids play, and watch Oprah together. We loved it when Dr. Oz was on, or Nate Berkus was doing magic making over people's homes. But my hands down favorite shows were makeovers where a stay-at-home mom in her sweats would be transformed before our eyes into this stylish woman with a great new hairdo. It gave me hope that they'd be knocking on my door someday. Oprah was fun.

All of that has changed. Oprah's not fun anymore. In fact, our 4:00 Oprah dates have become a thing of the past. Neither one of us can stand to watch it any more.

I've recognized for a long time that Oprah was morphing from "Oprah the Talk Show Host", to "Guru Oprah." I guess I just never realized how far she would take it. And now the message that Guru Oprah is sharing with her millions of viewers is one that has gone from "not fun" to heartbreaking. This is serious, because if her message is embraced, it will have eternal consequences.

I've been watching from the sidelines as the new Oprah book club choice was announced, Eckhart Tolle's A New Earth. I've visited Oprah's website and read through "Take Today's Lesson," a daily lesson that is written by Marianne Williamson and based on the New Age handbook, A Course in Miracles. I've been so heartbroken by it all, recognizing evil behind what appears good, and wanting to respond, but I've been overwhelmed by the scope of it all. So many people are talking about it now. Fox News even did a series on the controversy. There are so many, many, many points in the teachings that have my spiritual red flags blaring. Where would I even begin?

But the more I've watched this issue discussed, and the more I've seen the numbers growing of people interested in what the controversy is all about, the more I've felt a need to respond and to warn my loved ones to beware of all of this.

I see this issue as so much bigger than Oprah. Even if you aren't an Oprah watcher. Even if you are not a Christian, I still think this controversy has relevance. It comes down to the question of is there Truth or not? Is there an eternity? Is there a Creator?

It is also very interesting to see that this is nothing new. This specific controversy is new. Oprah may be a new spokesman for this message, but the philosophy is as old as time. This current buzz will blow over, but when it does, the philosophy will rise up in a new package. The Bible is very clear about this type of teaching. It's awesome to see that a book written so long ago could predict a modern controversy.

I'm not sure where I'm going to begin, but I need to dedicate a few blog posts to responding to all of this before I burst. I will throw in some fun stuff, too, and pictures for Grandma in between this deep thinking, but there will just have to be a few more blog posts out in cyberspace about Oprah, because Becky's riled up. And for those of you who know me, it takes a lot to do that. : )


Thursday, April 24, 2008

Case of The Sock Eater

I now have PROOF that my washing machine EATS socks!!!!!

Do you see this poor lonely sock?
My husband opened a package of brand new socks while standing at the washing machine. He placed them directly from the package into the machine to be washed. This poor sock came out of the dryer all alone with no match. How is that possible if the machine didn't eat its mate????? : )

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

I Need to Clarify Something

I got an Anonymous comment today about the nursing covers that I'm giving away for the Bloggy Giveaways that made me realize I needed to clarify something. I thought most moms were already familiar with this type of nursing cover and would know that I didn't invent them. Please forgive me if I gave that impression. I promise I didn't mean to! : )

Here is the Edit Note I added to the bottom of my giveaway post:

(Edit Note: 4/23/08: I received a comment today that made me realize I needed to edit this post. I would never want to give the impression that I came up with an original design that has never been done before. There are lots of this type of nursing cover on the market made by different companies with different brand names. They sell for between $35 - $45, so I was excited to be able to sew them for less. I guess you could think of this as a generic version of the others I have seen, and I just wanted to offer them to other moms who are on a budget like we are.)


American Idol

After watching the show last night there are only two things to say:

#1: Poor Brooke

#2: Which of the two Davids is going to win this thing?

Happy Wednesday!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

You Could Win My Latest Sewing Project


This giveaway will be ending at 8:00 (PST) tonight. (Sunday, April 27) There is still a little time to enter if you didn't get a chance. I will post the winner tomorrow morning. Thank you for the great name ideas!
There is a big blog carnival going on at bloggygiveaways.com and my latest sewing project is going to be my entry in the fun.

The nesting instinct has hit full force, so in preparation for our new baby, out came my sewing machine. : )

I had so many difficulties with nursing the first two times I attempted it. I'm praying that I will be successful this time. I'm on the lookout for anything that will make it easier for me. My sister-in-law had a nursing cover that I thought was ingenious. Using hers for inspiration, I figured out how to make one for myself.


Here's why I like it:

1. It's made out of lightweight fabric, so the baby won't get hot.

2. It's hands-free. The straps connect behind your neck with d-rings and can be adjusted for size. It won't fall off in public! : )



3. There is boning sewn into the top seam that allows you full view of the baby.

4. There is even a built-in burp rag corner to wipe up dribbles. : )



I had so much fun sewing this, I made one for my good friend Marisa for her birthday.

Here's how you can win one for yourself or for an expectant mom you know. I'm hoping to make a few of these to sell, but I need a good name for them. There are some versions of nursing covers similar to this on the market like Hooter Hider and Modest Mommy. Can you help me come up with a name for my little enterprise? Just leave a comment with a fun name suggestion for my nursing covers, and I'll draw a winner from the comments left.

The winner will receive a nursing cover free, including shipping if its within the Continental United States. I'll draw a winner over the weekend of April 26-27. I'll announce the winner on this site on Monday, April 28. The winner will be notified on your blog or by email. The winner can tell me a little about the personality of the mom it will be used for, and I'll choose a fabric that I think will match that mom. (e.g. classic, feminine, bold, trendy, baby boy, baby girl, etc.)

You don't have to be a blogger to win, you just need to leave me a valid email address when you comment so I can easily contact the winner.

If you found my blog through the bloggy giveaway, welcome! You can learn more about me here. I hope you'll come back and visit again.

Remember to stop by Bloggy Giveaways for a list of all of the bloggers who have fun things to give away this week.

Have Fun!

(Edit Note: 4/23/08: I received a comment today that made me realize I needed to edit this post. I would never want to give the impression that I came up with an original design that has never been done before. There are lots of this type of nursing cover on the market made by different companies with different brand names. They sell for between $35 - $45, so I was excited to be able to sew them for less. I guess you could think of this as a generic version of the others I have seen, and I just wanted to offer them to other moms who are on a budget like we are.)

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Sweetest Wake-Up Call Ever

I was enjoying sleeping in this morning when I heard Karissa tip-toeing into my bedroom. She came over to my side of the bed and frantically whispered, "Mommy, you have to come upstairs RIGHT NOW!! There is something very important you have to see, and if you don't hurry it might disappear. Please Mommy, please come upstairs."

Normally, I would have sent her out of the room and told her that I'd be up in a little bit, but there was something about the way she looked that made me realize this was really important to her.

So half awake, I let her lead me upstairs to their playroom where Amy was already waiting for me by the window.

Karissa said in her most excited voice, "Look, Mommy, look!!! The light of Heaven is shining down to earth. It's the light of Jesus, Mommy. I think we need to pray!"

She bowed her head and thanked God for this day and for her family and then Amy prayed, too. Then they both looked at me and said, "We think that Jesus is coming back for us today, Mommy. Please take a picture of it and put it on your blog and tell everyone that the light of Jesus is shining today and He might come and get us and take us to Heaven today!"

I told them that I thought Jesus was sending them a very special and personal message that He loves them. Then I stumbled back down the stairs and found my camera. The light kept changing and looked a bit different before I could finally get a picture of it. The camera doesn't do it justice, but here it is, from my girls to you:


I'm so thankful that my girls have an eternal perspective and understand that Jesus is coming back. Their faith and excitement touched me and made me want to be more expectant for His return, too, and more aware of Him in my everyday life.

They can wake me up for something like that any day! : )

Friday, April 18, 2008

Things Are Looking Brighter

I am happy to report that we survived our day today, and my girls still love me. : )

Poor Amy had to get 5 shots, but she came home and hopped on her bike and played hard all afternoon. Karissa's two shots didn't slow her down either. I think we are done with immunizations until they are 11 or 12 years old. HALLELUJAH!!!!

They were quite the entertainment at the doctor's office today. I wonder if our male nurse has ever had such chatty patients. They had sooooo much to tell him! He was their best friend until the needles came out. Getting the shots was traumatic, but the trauma was short-lived.

And I am also happy to report that the Neosporin seems to being doing its job. The girls' earlobes are looking great and are healing. They even laughed during cleaning time this evening. Yippeeeee!!!!!!

If I didn't already know the forecast for this weekend (dismal), I'd start singing:

I can see clearly now the rain has gone
I can see all obstacles in my way
Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind
It's going to be a bright, bright sunshiny day
It's going to be a bright, bright sunshiny day

I think I can make it now the pain has gone
And all of the bad feelings have disappeared
Here is the rainbow I've been praying for
It's gonna be a bright, bright sunshiny day!!!

Ha Ha....Anyway, I hope you have a sunshiny weekend, regardless of the weather.

Love,

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Why Are You Hurting Me?

Remember how happy my girls were to get this done less than one week ago?That was before I became the meanest mommy on the planet.

I'm not Super Mom lately, I'm a meanie because I have to clean their ears three times a day. I have to call them in from having fun and go through our routine.

Their ears may already be infected. We've been faithful with the cleaning, but they hurt to touch and the redness comes and goes.

I thought for sure Amy's were infected, but after treating it with Neosporin for a few days they have improved a ton. Now I'm thinking Karissa's might be infected, so she's getting the Neosporin treatment. There have been lots of prayers around here that we will get through this and survive the next six weeks.

So here is Becky's friendly advice for the day:
DON'T LET YOUR DAUGHTERS PIERCE THEIR EARS UNTIL THEY ARE OLD ENOUGH TO TAKE CARE OF THEM.

Learn from my pain. : )

There are tons of tears at every cleaning. They beg me not to do it. They can't understand why I insist on hurting them three times a day. I just have to bite my lip and do it anyway because I know that keeping their ears clear of infection is what is best for them.

Amy keeps telling me I'm doing it wrong. She keeps saying, "But Mommy the lady at the store didn't tell you to put that medicine on me." She thinks I made up the Neosporin part just to spend more time hurting her.

This whole situation reminds me of how we try to tell God He's doing things wrong at times. We approach Him from our limited understanding and are hurt when we can't figure out what He's doing. As a loving Father, He has to do it anyway, and we have to trust He knows what He's doing.

The devotion I read this morning had one of my favorite Bible verses:

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight" - Proverbs 3:5-6.

The lean not on your own understanding part really stood out to me today.

My girls don't understand what I'm doing, but they'll have to trust me to take care of them.

What do you think they'll think of me when they find out we have a doctor appointment tomorrow to have their immunizations updated? Oh man! Pray for us......

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

My American Idol Weekly Verdict

(If you are here to see our ultrasound pictures and find out the winner of the Monster Truck vs. Cutie Pie debate, click here)


I was a lousy commentator on American Idol last week, wasn't I? No bragging rights. : (

My DVR didn't record correctly, and I missed all of Idol Gives Back and the results show. I was so bummed! I was also shocked to learn through the grapevine that Michael Johns went home. I didn't predict he'd make it to the top, but I also did not expect to see him go home so soon.

So, on to last night's show. To be honest, I expected it to be a disaster because it was Mariah Carey week. I wondered how anyone would be able to pull off one of her songs without sounding like an imitation.
I especially worried about the guys singing her songs, but I didn't need to worry about them at all. The boys stole the show!
When it came to the girls, it pretty much was a disaster.
Painful to Watch:


I have been a Brooke fan all along so it pains me to say this, but I thought she was the worst of the night, and I'm afraid she's going home tonight. She needed something spectacular last night in order to stay in this, and it just didn't happen.

I've also been a Carly fan, but she is in trouble, too. Her performance was so forced. I predict these two will be the bottom two tonight.

Not too bad, but unimpressive:

I have to give "props" to Kristy, though. She is a scrapper! She's fought hard to stay in this so long.

The Stars of the Night:




When David Cook finished singing, I said, "Wow. I can't believe he just sang a Mariah Carey song." My husband said, "He didn't. He sang his OWN song."
That's what made the guys great last night. They took her songs and made them their own. My favorite was Jason. Wow!
I think I'm ready to make a prediction for who will be the final two. I think it will be the two Davids with Jason as the third. The girls don't stand a chance.
Have fun watching tonight!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Lots of Joy and a Debate Settled : )

Many of you have been faithful readers and have followed along with the "Monster Truck" vs. "Cutie Pie" debate. The day you have all been waiting for has arrived! (See sidebar for explanation)

I had my ultrasound today and cried tears of joy and relief. Our baby is healthy and growing just as a baby should be at this stage. The heart looked beautiful. The spine was perfect. The ultrasound tech even counted fingers and toes and looked to see if there were lenses on the baby's eyes. It was amazing!

And I thought about drawing out the suspense, but I'm about to burst. Here's what you really wanted to know:



If you can't read the writing, it says, "Without a doubt~ The winner is



MONSTER TRUCK!!!!!!!



We are having a little boy. : )

And if you still aren't convinced, I have an even better picture to show you, but Pat needs to scan it in for me when he gets home tonight. I'll add it in once he does that for me. Believe me, after seeing that photo, you won't be left with any doubt.

; 0 )

God is so faithful and so good to us. He carried us through all of the heartache, comforted us in a way only He can, and now is giving us such a gift. My heart is full, and I am on cloud nine. : )


This picture is clear to me, because I saw him sucking his thumb like this, but I know ultrasounds can be tough to decipher. On the left is his shoulder, bent arm, and fist next to his cheek. Imagine the baby laying on his side and you are seeing the profile of his face and his left ear.

I just love this photo. : )

Thank you everyone for praying for us and for this baby. Thank you for understanding how scary every appointment is, for lifting us up in prayer, and for celebrating with us. In some cases, I know that this is tough to do because you are going through your own losses. Your love and prayers and selflessness mean so much to me.

Now the tough part......Picking out a name. Do you have any favorite boy names? We have a ton of girl names we love, but haven't been able to think of any boy names yet. Please leave me a comment with your favorites and give us some ideas. : )

Somehow, I need to go be useful now. I doubt I'm going to be very successful at it because I keep stopping to look at the pictures every five minutes. : )

Love,

A Little of This and That

Today is the BIG day around here, ULTRASOUND day. You'll have to check back later today to see if we have settled the Monster Truck, Cutie Pie debate once and for all.

I'm nervous and feel a little nauseous, but there is no reason to be afraid. The Doppler we have here keeps playing sweet and LOUD heartbeats. : ) Stay tuned....

Also, I woke up yesterday to fun news. I won the Swap and Hop giveaway that Lysa TerKeurst and Karen Ehman were hosting on Friday. The prize was a copy of Karen's new book, The Complete Guide to Getting and Staying Organized. If you read my post on Friday about our toy organizations woes, you'll know I need to read this book. I'll share any great insights I get with each of you.

I also wanted to encourage you to stop by the other winner's blog and say hello. I'm writing this post directly from the You Tube site, and I don't think I'll be able to edit it at all or add links, so here is Dawn's blog address: http://godzgalzimageconsulting.blogspot.com/

When I was at the She Speaks Conference in North Carolina last year, I watched Karen Ehman perform this skit. This version is a little different than the one she did for us, but I sure can relate! Can you? : )

Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

The Princesses Have New 'Dos

It is amazing to me within three days of writing this post, we are now enjoying weather in the 70's and 80's. The girls are outside in their barefeet and jammies playing on their swingset. I guess that's the fun of living in the Northwest. VARIETY! : )
Yesterday, the beautiful weather inspired me, but I just felt bored and didn't know what to do with myself, so Pat intervened and sent his girls out for Mommy/Daughters fun. And what is more fun for girls then a trip to the beauty parlor, right?
Look What We Did!!!

SEVERAL inches gone!

This one ended up MUCH shorter than I asked for, but it turned out so cute, I didn't complain. Plus she's VERY happy with the result.

Lot's of smiles over the results! : )

OOH But That's Not ALL We Did!

(Brace yourself Grandma)

Amy has been fascinated lately with earrings and has been asking to get her ears "peeled." I didn't want to get it done because it represented growing up to me, so I pulled the old "ask your Daddy" card out of my pocket and he shocked me by saying, "Sure. Why not? That's what girls do, right?"

So after we finished with the haircuts, we swung by the mall and got their ears peeled, I mean pierced. : ) They were troopers! They hugged a teddy bear, held my hand, and sucked on Jolly Ranchers. Amy had the most angry face on for awhile afterwards, but there were no tears. Now the hard part comes with keeping up with the cleaning and making sure they don't get infected. My babies are officially not babies anymore. : (

The whole thing is a little bittersweet for me, but we had such a fun day~


Karissa gives it two-thumbs up!

And Amy woke up this morning still smiling! : )


And laughing : )

I'll end with a video to make you smile:


video