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Sunday, August 31, 2008
Thursday, August 28, 2008
Wednesday, August 27, 2008
Hatfield, PA – K’NEX Brands, one of the world’s leading construction toy
companies, is inviting kids across the country to put on their thinking caps and
enter the K’NEXpert Search – an annual contest that invites kids to design an
ultra-creative, original model made entirely from K’NEX parts. Three
imaginative young builders will each win a $10,000 savings bond for college.
Last year’s Grand Prize Winner, Ian Culhane, designed an amazing
6,500-Piece Dragon-Themed Roller Coaster, “Belly of the Beast.”
This year, K’NEX is expanding the contest to include three Grand Prize winners from three age groups: 5 to 6-year-olds; 7 to 8-year-olds; and, 9 to
Seven additional winners across all age groups will
each receive $1,000 savings bonds. Also, all ten winners will receive $500 worth
of free K’NEX Building Sets, a trip for three to New York City for the K’NEXpert
Award Ceremony, and their very own photo gallery page at http://www.knex.com/.
All semi-finalists and finalists will receive discounts on online purchases for a year, K’NEX gear, a K’NEX birthday gift, , and an invitation to visit the K’NEX headquarters and discover, through company designers, how K’NEX is made.
The 2009 K’NEXpert Search will run from now through September 30, 2008 with winners announced on or about October 28, 2008.
Children enter by printing out the entry form from the
K’NEX web site (http://www.knex.com/) beginning July 8, 2008 and mailing it in to K’NEX. Submissions must include a photo of the creation and a one-minute video or one-page summary describing how the childcame up with the idea, how long the design took to build and how many K’NEX pieces were used.
Young builders between the ages of 5-12 must
submit an entry within one of four building categories:
Ultimate K’NEX Model –
built with K’NEX Bricks,
Classic K’NEX and
Micro K’NEX; Futuristic; Vehicles;
and Amusement Park Thrill Rides.
Kids are encouraged to let their imaginations run wild – models are judged on creativity, uniqueness and detail.
A panel of judges comprised of K’NEX employees will select
semi-finalists; an online vote will determine ten winners and Joel Glickman,
inventor of K’NEX, will choose the three Grand Prize Winners.
For more information on K’NEX, the Search and previous winners, visit http://www.knex.com/.
About K’NEX Brands
Founded in 1992, K’NEX Brands, the world’s most innovative
construction toy company, was established to make and sell what has become
one of the world’s leading integrated construction systems for children. Winner
of over 200 international awards and recognitions, K’NEX seeks to build young
minds with its exciting product line and critically acclaimed K’NEX Education
program. For more information, please visit http://www.knex.com/.
Still reading and linking this week. It's been fun! What a great idea of just giving my mind a break from thinking of what to post and enjoying your posts.
Today, I found this over at Genny's My Cup 2 Yours.
This Quiet House really captures the gift of being a mommy.
Genny is such a great writer - sweet, authentic, funny and positive.
Her comments on my blog are always so uplifting and encouraging!
And then there was just the opposite of being a mom - well, kind of. Jen at Cheaper Than Therapy talks about job security as a stay at home mom and her hubby wanting to move in on that.
Dad, Dad So SAHD
Oh, that is such a cute little play on words. Dad, Dad so Sad (SAHD).
Anyway, Cheaper Than Therapy is a fun blog. Jen is also sweet, very funny, authentic and encouraging.
I found both of these blogs through Mom Bloggers Club - see my sidebar.
Go say hello to these ladies!
Oh and have a great post or seen one this week? Let me know!
Monday, August 25, 2008
Like many of you, my week is shaping up to be craaazy.
I have also been feeling a little in a blogging rut. I posted this issue that I am having over at Mom Bloggers Club and one of the moms there suggested that I spend some time just reading other blogs for awhile and commenting and getting some fresh ideas. Great idea!!!
So, I plan to spend some time doing that this week in hopes of being inspired a bit more on my own blog.
My first link up is to Rebecca over at Musings of a Mum of 4 and her
She is an amazing photographer and comments regularly on my blog. I enjoy her sense of humor and look forward every day to seeing what new photos she has posted. She even has a new photo blog, A Photo a Day.
My inspiration from Rebecca and many other bloggers: their advice - get PhotoShop.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Today while I was at the gym, I overheard a conversation.
It was in the locker room.
I was not really eavesdropping as much as I was just trying to get dressed next to these two women and they were talking.
I really couldn't help but overhear.
So the one woman asks the other if she should call to cancel an appointment with this guy or just send him an email.
The second woman says that if she thinks he will get the email in a timely manner to just send the email. Then she says that she prefers to get an email from people rather than a phone call.
The other woman agrees and in my head I also agree.
They go on talking about how when people call on the telephone that they just go on and on. That an email is so much easier because you can keep it short, reply when you want and not be interrupted in the business of life.
Yeah, I get that.
That gets me thinking about something I heard the other day.
Go with me here...
We have become this society of people that follow Twitter conversations, text message each other and email back and forth. ALL. THE. TIME.
Most of these interactions are short and sweet. They are usually not deep and rarely intimate.
We are so busy that we seldom have time for real live conversations.
Because we are so busy, we actually seem to desire the short snippets of peoples lives via email and text messaging.
But, real live conversations lead to real live relationships. Ones that are intimate.
It really is amazing to me how we feel so connected because of these modern advances in technology, but so many people are really very lonely because they don't have any real live deep relationships. Because they don't have the time to invest in them.
I really felt this after returning from my high school reunion. I remember sitting up the last night in one of my old friends hotel rooms. There were a group of us just hanging out on her bed and talking. I caught myself leaning my head up against one of my friends. A friend I have not seen in almost 20 years.
Okay, so mostly I was having trouble holding my head up. It was LATE y'all and I am getting too old to stay up that late.
But I thought about my comfort level with her which was so deep because of the time I had invested with her many years ago. As teens, we have so much more time to invest in relationships. I realized I miss that in my friendships now as an adult.
I do believe that we were created to be in relationship with one another. Jesus left us with 2 commands - Love God with all your heart and Love One Another.
Not so easy to do on Twitter.
Now I am not suggesting that we can't encourage each other via Twitter and email. I send emails to encourage and console almost every single day. I can reach a lot more people that way. It would be nearly impossible for me to touch as many lives with an encouraging word via the phone.
I am also not passing any sort of judgement. I am so guilty of not picking up the phone or hand writing a note or even making a lunch date with a friend.
So, this is my attempt to be more connected with people for real.
I started a list of a couple things I do that help me.
- Keep my address book updated and handy so I can address a note easily.
- Keep stamps handy.
- Buy cards in packages or bulk so I can send one when a friend comes to mind.
- Keep fun pens around to write notes with.
- Keep my phone numbers updated in my cell phone and home phone so I can just pick up the phone and call a friend when I have a few minutes to spare.
- Don't go to lunch alone so much. I cannot tell you the amount of times, I have been out and about and taken my kids to eat at one of those playlands only to be sitting there by myself! So, next time with my handy numbers - call a friend to come and meet me.
- Learn to say, "I gotta go now." This is the hardest part for me. I am a talker. Many of my friends are talkers and so I avoid the phone because I know it will be a marathon talk of which I do not have time for.
So, I should get over this. Talk as long as I can. Touch base, connect and hang up when I need to. It's better than no conversation at all, isn't it? Yeah? Isn't it? What do you think?
Okay, give me the ways you keep in contact with your friends and family. Ways you keep real live relationships going strong.
Yeah, and do that in a short, sweet, non-intimate snippet in the comments of this technologically advanced blog. Ironic, huh?
Thursday, August 21, 2008
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
For some REAL Wordless Wednesday shots go to 5 Minutes for Mom.
Things you might hear your 7 year old daughter say while she is having an all out tantrum.
1. You NEVER let me do what I want!
(Never? UmKay, just about all the time)
2. You ALWAYS say no to whatever I want!
(I rarely say no. I read this on a poster one time to say yes as often as possible.)
3. You are SO MEAN!
(I must be doing something right!)
4. You don't even care about me!
5. You NEVER listen to me!
(she talks more than I do, which is a lot)
6. It's my door, I can slam it if I want to.
(Actually, it's not your door and no you cannot slam it)
7. You make me so FRUSTRATED!
(I can understand that)
9. You must be so happy that you made me so sad.
(Yeah, it is my life goal to make small children sad)
10. You treat me like your personal slave.
(Why do you think I had kids?)
11. I hate you.
(Ouch, that hurts, but I hated my mom sometimes, too)
Needless to say, we are working on what things you want to say OUT LOUD when you are angry and what things you might want to scream in your pillow so you don't regret them later.
Also, what things you might want to write out and give to your mom when you are angry with her (which is not much) and what things you might want to write out and tear up before your mom sees what you wrote (which is almost everything).
I understand my daughter's bursts of anger. Shamefully I admit, she most likely learned them from me. Together we work on how to best channel our anger. How we can control it in a healthy way, express it in a healthy way and make amends when we need to.
She is very remorseful after she has a fit. Yeah, I get that. But she also seems to have let the world off her shoulders. I get that, too.
She is such a good girl, but I do believe that trying to keep her behavior in tip top shape all day at school is hard work. It is absolutely distressing to her to lose good behavior dots at school.
I have heard that when kids come home they act on their worst behavior because they have been working so hard on their good behavior all day and they are comfortable letting go at home.
I want her to feel comfortable. I want her to be able to let go and show her grace when she has said or done something that is wrong. It's usually after a tantrum like this, I get to hold her very close for awhile as she spills out the details of her day.
However, I am not a big fan of the word HATE and that is the expression of her anger that frustrates me the most. We don't even use the word HATE when we dislike a certain food. So, I really feel like she is using it to show me just how upset she is with me. Something she knows will really get my attention.
As she gets older, I see her try to control her behavior more. I see her try to reign in her emotions most of the time and I just want that to be in a healthy way. I want her to get them out and see that relief she experiences when she does let it all out. But I also don't want her to feel like she can just say whatever comes to her mind in anger.
So yeah, that's where we are right now. Drama Drama Drama.
I'd love to hear from you Drama Mamas. Tell me what you do with your little Drama Queens.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
"When can we play REAL soccer?!?!"
Monday, August 18, 2008
Thursday, August 14, 2008
Well, leave it to me to push it until the night before I leave.
I work best under pressure.
I found it. The dress. And I actually have a photo of it. I LOVE the back of this dress especially. And I had a coupon at Macy's for 20% off, so I pleased my inner bargain girl.
Sorry about no photos before, but still no camera and NONE of the dresses I bought I could find online.
So, I actually already have shoes to match this dress which are a pair of my favorites. They are a camel colored stilleto pump. I got some dangly gold earrings, no necklace and some gold bangle bracelets. It is done.
I will offer one piece of advice while trying on dresses: go ahead purchase some Spanx before you head out. They are awesome. I heard they were awesome and they truly live up to the hype. The thought of not having to hold my stomach in all night is worth every penny I spent on them.
Now we can go back to our regularly scheduled life.
Thank you all for your support.
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
For all my local peeps.
My friend invited me to this new social network and it is all about what is going on in the triangle for kids.
It is a great site.
Check it out. And then come back. I have another link for you.
Go go! I'll wait here. ;)
Triangle T.R.A.C.K.S - Tools, Resources, and Activities for Carolina Kids
Oh good, you're back.
So, while you're out there clicking around go check out my friend's Tim and Chris and their business JumpBunch. Great classes and there are a couple open to the public. My son loved the classes!
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
Seriously, could it be that I end up finding a dress at Marshall's for $24.99?
And the shoes marked on sale for less than $20?????
Could my entire outfit end up costing less than the actual ticket to the reunion??? Say it isn't so. But my inner bargain girl would actually be pretty overjoyed if it is.
I know, I know. I still have not found the dress for the reunion.
But I have been searching.
And it was a busy weekend.
And my son has pink eye.
So, yes, I found a 4th dress. They now all hang in my closet waiting for me to choose. Of course, the others will go back. They range in price from $200 (it is going back) to $24.99. We know the one that my FIL and hubby were not wowed by is going back. We know the one that cost as much as groceries for a week and a half is going back. And the other one - well, a little tighter than I would like.
I have searched high and low.
I have been to Nordstrom (tried on a $300 dress which was beautiful - on the hanger), Macy's, Cache, Ann Taylor, Arden B, Black and White Market, Belk, Dillards, SteinMart and finally Marshall's.
Can you say - INDECISIVE, PICKY and basically just RIDICULOUS? That would be me.
It looks like we might have a winner, though.
So, my only issue now.
It has these little rhinestones around the waist. Sounds fancy but, really it's not that fancy.
What necklace do I wear? Or do I wear any at all? Maybe just some earrings?
Oh, I know there are REALLY big problems going on in the world, but seriously can we just figure this one out right now for me? ;)
Monday, August 11, 2008
Well, B had her very first sleepover this weekend.
I have to say, I had some reservations.
She is only in second grade.
Not even 8 years old.
I don't think I had my first sleepover until at least 3rd or 4th grade.
I would have said NO but I already said NO last year when she was invited to this very same girl's sleepover party. I think I would have destroyed my daughter if I'd refused again this year. Plus, I really love the parents and trust them.
So, it all went well. I think the girls stayed up until after midnight and were up by 6:45 am. Those poor parents - brave souls!
She was so tired yesterday and everything was a bigger deal. The biggest deal being that I would not allow her to have a friend over after church.
Okay, so the kid had birthday parties on both Friday and Saturday night. She with with her little girlfriends ALL weekend.
I felt some family time on Sunday was necessary.
She did not like my denial of her request.
As a matter of fact because of her not getting her way and being tired I witnessed the tantrum of a 7 year old girl in full force.
What is it with hearing NO?
When we want something, we want it now and certainly don't want to be told NO.
From a very early age we teach our children boundaries by telling them NO. We do this because we see a bigger picture than they do. We know what is best for our children.
They can't see past their immediate needs. We can, though.
As I reflect on this weekend I look at what I said YES to.
It was a big deal for me to say YES to a sleepover.
It was something my daughter really wanted and I honored that want.
However, when she was visibly tired from the weekend, I needed to say NO so she could rest.
But she didn't understand that. And she might not until she has children of her own.
It's a good lesson for me today.
Sometimes when I ask my heavenly father for something through prayer he says YES!
He honors my deepest desire and I can see answer to prayer quickly.
Other times, not so much.
He says NO.
I can deal with waiting on answered prayer. As long as it goes in my favor. I'm a little spoiled that way, I hate to admit.
Because he knows best?
It is not always the easiest thing to accept. And I may not see his reason for saying NO on this side of heaven. But I have to trust. Be obedient.
I am reminded of how I often handle a NO from God.
Just like B did yesterday.
Kicking and screaming.
Why do you think we don't just trust and obey? Well, maybe you do. I don't mean to assume that you don't. I guess, I am just wondering about me. Here on this blog. Why don't I always trust and obey?
Saturday, August 9, 2008
This month, I have been blogging one year. I had no idea what blogging was a year ago and when I heard about it my first thought was it would just be one more thing for me to do every day.
I actually could not imagine I would have enough to write about for a week, much less a year.
I am a quite a talker but to be able to put it all in black and white would be difficult. It is actually difficult, but I like the discipline of learning to observe more of what is happening around me and putting it into writing on a daily basis.
Since the beginning, I have also met people I might never have known. I have been inspired daily by smart funny women that I don't personally know and have access to so many more. I have been blessed by the encouragement and comments of you, my readers.
I don't get the most comments of any blogger and I know that many bloggers that have been doing this for even less time than I are better at it. They are amazing writers, funny and really are good at getting their blog out there.
I love reading their blogs and learning from them. So, here is to another year!
How about you? How long have you been blogging and what is your favorite part about it?
If you have been lurking here on my blog - this would be an excellent time to come out and let me know who you are! ;)
One of my favorite speakers at the Willow Creek Leadership Summit was Craig Groeschel from LifeChurch.tv. What is God trying to show you through your greatest limitation? What has God called you to do that you’re afraid to try?
Actually, this is my third year watching summit and I would say he is one of my Top 5 favorites. Over the years, I have been impacted by all of the speakers in some way, but a few of them leave me with lasting impressions. Lasting challenges. Lasting growth.
He was alive, real and offered excellent advice for leaders and Christ-followers. And - he. was. funny. Oh, and looks a lot like Tom Cruise.
He offered stimulating and challenging questions, that seriously did keep me up late last night. Make no mistake, that was his intention. I think if it is enough to keep me up at night then I need to do something about finding the answers to these questions in my own life. That is what I took away from his talk. Here are some main questions he presented to us:
What are we doing that we should stop doing?
Some thoughts I had in response to his questions immediately are these...
For me the thought of actually stopping something I am already doing is difficult. I really need to think of it less as a failure and more of where God is leading me in a different, better direction.
My greatest limitation? How can I pick just one???? :) But what is the one that keeps me from really not being as effective of a leader as I can. Easy - FEAR. Fear of what others think, fear of what others are doing. Fear of messing up. Fear of not being taken seriously.
Called to do and afraid to try? Not sure, yet. I think working through the fears above will keep me busy for awhile.
Here is his blog, Swerve, where they talk more about the summit.
He left us with this Franciscan Prayer and I wanted to share it with you today.
What is God trying to show you through your greatest limitation?
What has God called you to do that you’re afraid to try?
May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and
superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your
May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and
exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom and
May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from
pain, rejection, starvation, and war, so that you may reach out your hand to
comfort them and to turn their pain in to joy.
And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you
can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot
Friday, August 8, 2008
Well, I worked on Thursday at the Summit simulcast in the Compassion booth.
My mind was a bit fried since we also had small group right after the Summit which lasted from 9am -6:30 pm. So, my post will not be too long today.
Don't rejoice too loudly now.
The speakers were incredible. The volunteers at our church that are caring for all the visitors - well, they just rock and the new Leadership Development program that Compassion has is really cool. I will talk a little more about it tomorrow.
But I read this over at Anne Jackson's blog yesterday and wanted to share.
I think it best explains what I learned today.
There is injustice in this world.
The bible talks about injustice.
What is God's plan in all this injustice?
We're the plan.
To show love.
Just one person at a time.
We alone can't conquer the entire problem of rising food costs and hunger in this world.
We can help conquer the problem for one child. Once a month. $32 a month.
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Wednesday, August 6, 2008
I purchased my first vintage apron a few weeks ago and I LOVE IT!
I have several aprons that people have bought me and I always forget to wear them, but this cutie pie I have hanging right in my kitchen and I wear it every day now. I have gotten SO many compliments on it and Hubby just thinks it is adorable.
I think my husband's fantasy of having a 1950's wife actually seem to come true when he sees me in that apron.
Check out the Apron Queens website at Rick Rack Attack and find your favorite.
Then head over to Mercedes and enter this weeks Rick Rack Attack contest to win your very own vintage apron!
Monday, August 4, 2008
So, what do the things in the title have in common?
Anyway, then yesterday, while trying on dresses, I noticed I was breaking out in hives.
I took Benedryl, but it just made me sleepy. I am hoping they go away by tomorrow so I don't have to go to the doctor.
Anyone out there heard of breaking out in hives after a hot stone massage?
Sunday, August 3, 2008
Psalm 139:13 (The Message)
13-16 Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out;
you formed me in my mother's womb.
I thank you, High God—you're breathtaking!
Body and soul, I am marvelously made!
I worship in adoration—what a creation!
You know me inside and out,
you know every bone in my body;
You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit,
how I was sculpted from nothing into something.
Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth;
all the stages of my life were spread out before you,
The days of my life all prepared
before I'd even lived one day.
Saturday, August 2, 2008
Finally. The Givaway Winner!
I am able to work with my computer.
I have re-booted this thing about 10 times today.
Hubby has worked on it off and on. Installed a new Ad-Aware program.
Good grief - it's almost enough to make me want to quit computers all together.
Or buy a Mac.
That sounds much better.
Anyway, thanks for being patient. And thank you all so much for your wonderful comments and taking a gander at the Saladmaster website. The features are amazing and it has been a real honor to sell such a quality product for the last 13 years.
Here are the official results from Random.org
Random Integer Generator
Here are your random
Timestamp: 2008-08-03 03:27:23 UTC
That is 157...drum roll please Angel from Angel's Blog! It looks like Angel is a homeschooling mom and wife of a soldier. I am happy happy happy to send her something new for her kitchen. She has a lovely blog - go check it out!
Her favorite features were the dripless pouring edges and the stainless steel. She has had her eye on Saladmaster for some time now, so this is a great start for her.
Thanks Angel and Congratulations!
Many of you expressed a real interest in finding out more about these products. I don't blame you - they really do rock the kitchen.
If you are in North Carolina click here to contact our office or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
We will cook you dinner one night and show you more about it.
A night out of the kitchen! Woo Hoo!
If you are not in my area please go to the Saladmaster website and find an authorized dealer near you. They will come to cook for you, too!
I follow this blog a lot and really love it. Check out The Nester out for decorating AWESOMENESS and she makes her own BEAUTIFUL Tassles. AND you cannot miss out on the window MIStreatments. Awesome. Really. I have said that but seriously, when I go to her blog, I feel... a warm feeling in my heart. I feel at home. I can only imagine how it would be to actually walk in her home! I imagine completely inviting.
You know my love for my precious Maltese dog, Buddy. Well, my neighbor also has a Maltese and she found this website and I am in love. Lolly and Lulu.
I love it because Lolly the Maltese was actually a rescue dog. Lolly and Lulu have a calendar and the website it designed to help other dogs be rescued. IT IS SO CUTE and I have spent entirely too much time there. I have learned so much about my own dog, though!
Get an autographed copy of Providence by Chris Coppernoll for only $12. Help a great cause. More information right here at The Queen B
And what are your favorite jeans? Jo-Lynne at Musings of a Housewife and her posts about fashion and shopping are always top notch. She really keeps me in check with keeping fashion simple and classy but also fun and trendy.
I had so many more I wanted to link to but my computer is acting very wonky right now.
Computer acting Wonky.
Won't open her blog.
Or even mine for that matter.
But will let me edit posts.
Anyway, go to her blog and find it - something cool about asking Third Day anything you want!!!