Saturday, October 30, 2010

Fall fun fest

We went to our 3rd annual fall fest down at Paradise church on Friday evening. This is the first year they dressed up for it. A couple hours before we left i started thinking what can they dress as? (slightly last minute!) I went through their clothes looking for Rod's Auto Body shirts, so they could dress up as daddy's helpers. i wasn't successful. Then Adam says "why don't we wear our chef's hats?" Now why didn't i think of that?? It was rather comical watching them do the activites in their chef's outfits...
It's so refreshing catching up w/ family and friends who you don't often get to see but still enjoy talking to and hanging out. It was a fun evening for all.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A pheasant in our front yard. Not really what i was expecting to see as i glanced out the window!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010


yes, i'm obsessed. Get used to it :)

A link to MLB's latest article on Hamilton. Also watch the video clip, his teammates celebrated with him on field after they won with Ginger Ale instead of beer or champagne. How cool!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

....until next year

So the phils didn't make the world series this year. i was bummed but at the same time so excited about the rangers making it to the world series and let me tell you why. less then a year ago i did a post about rangers outfielder josh hamilton., i wrote him a letter and he sent me a signed card back and i got it last november. (click here for that post) Josh has a major major testimony which is all written in this book, "beyond belief". he overcame A LOT of sin and is now on fire for God. the reason i'm so pumped about this is because Josh was the MVP of this last series, when the rangers beat the yankees and eliminated them from the playoffs. And since he was the MVP, they presented him w/ an award and interviewed him. The first thing that came out of his mouth went something like this: "first of all i'd like to thank my Lord and savior Jesus, and would like to give Him all the glory for this" (in front of 50,000+ fans and millions of TV veiwers!) later in the interview he said the God brought him through so much and he's so blessed. this man is real and others can see that. he's not "just saying" these things. This is rare for a professional baseball player to be so bold and humble and open like this with the media. I knew when i finished that book that God wasnt' done w/ him. I can't wait to see if anything happens in the world series.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Cherry Crest Farm

I took the kids here yesterday. I have never ever been to this famous maze or to the other fun things they have, and i was very impressed! they have tons of things to do, for all ages of kids. We were there for 4 hours and probably didn't even do 1/4 of the things they have to offer. I think we'll make it a yearly tradition.

They were all about the animals:
Wagon ride, a neat idea. He pulled it with a small tractor through the corn fields. i was impressed with the tires on these wagons!
The bounce pillow. Looked like so much fun, adults weren't allowed :( I like how they had 2 pillows, one for the bigger kids and one for Adam's size and younger. These "pillows" were huge!
Adam loved this station: Life sized lincoln logs!
We wrapped it up with pedal carts:
Oh almost forgot. Grandma and Clay were there too!

Parts of the Cherry Crest farm trip were educational too, which i liked. Check out their website if you never been there. We didn't do the corn maze, but that's what they are well known for.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Blessings from Today

Today was my birthday. A very nice day, i love Sunday birthdays! My highlights were....

*opening homeade cards that the boys made at Grandma's house,
*getting 35 birthday wishes on facebook,
*Rod asking "what would you like to do today?"
*making homeade pizza with the boys,
*a 70 degree day,
*finding a new litter of kitties under our rose bushes (that might be more a burden then a blessing, come to think of it). And lastly,
*sitting on the couch with Rod watching the Phillies

It truly is the little things!! I am thankful to God for the gift of another year.

Friday, October 15, 2010


Sears offers a program called "Kidvantage". If you buy their brand of kids jeans ("toughskins" is their brand name), they will replace them once they get holes in them. We bought a pair for Adam in the spring. He wore them a handful of times and the other day he wore them through. Tonight Rod and i tested out this program. We were slightly skeptical. Is this too good to be true?!? Sure enough, we brought back the holey pair and they replaced them with a brand new pair. No charge. No receipt. No signing anything. Nothing. The only thing to be aware of is that they replace them with the exact same size jeans. So really we're keeping these for the twins. Cause Adam already outgrew 4T jeans. This system works great for us, as we can just keep on passing the jeans down to the next boy. So if this interests you, check out "Kidvantage" online from Sears. We recommend it!!

On another note, after we exchanged the jeans we looked for church clothing for me, as it's been quite some time since I've purchased nice clothing for church and i've been having to get a little too creative to come up with something nice to wear. We couldn't find anything!!! Everything was so....icky. Were does one find cute, modest, quality and reasonably priced clothes!?! grrr. i did find a nice pair of jeans which made me feel a little better :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Recent thoughts, activities, and pics

* The boys got a new girl cousin this week, on the Gingrich side. She's so tiny, Adam asked if she is real. Apparently he doesn't remember when the twins were born :) The boys have all girl cousins except for 1 boy on the Gingrich side (we love you Caleb!) and all boy cousins except for 1 girl on the Smoker side (we love you Dana!).

* Our church ladies are reading through a book right now called Holy Habits. So far it's very good. In chapter 3 she suggests pausing every 15 minutes and reflecting on what things you just thought about. It's scary what goes through my mind. Time to train my thoughts towards positive, God honoring things. It's been helpful to stay conscious of what i'm thinking about and stop the negative things before it snowballs. I like this book as it explains that you can't work on being Holy. We must first get to know God at a personal level, which is turn will cause us to be Holy. She's very helpful with her experience on getting to know God more personally.

* The boys are enjoying their Awanas this year. Of course Adam likes having the twins in with him. A year ago i didn't think the twins would be ready to do Awana this year (socially and with memorizing scripture). But they are doing so good learning their scripture, being with new kids, and doing the crafts. It's so awesome to watch them grow. God has done a lot in their little lives.
* Clay is 6 months old!! He's doing so many new things. Sitting, saying "ba-ba" and eating everything in sight! He still doesn't sleep through the night most nights. And i actually don't mind (for the most part!). He'll cry somewhere between 3-5am and i'll feed him for 15 minutes and lay him back down. This is the only feeding where he snuggles right in, so i'm treasuring that. Even if it's not an ideal time of day.
* We're having fun watching post season baseball. Adam is especially interested in the rules of baseball and the Phillies players. I love teaching him! He pretends to be Jason Werth. Not my first choice, if you know what i mean :) but cute anyway. We have a tradition of eating popcorn for snack while watching the game.
We're gearing up for our church event here today. Yesterday we made a scarecrow for decoration.
Next weekend, we're "parting out" the kids & will be kid-less for a little. I cannot wait for the break!! although i have lots planned, like make applesauce and get out winter clothes for everybody!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


We have very, very old apple trees on our property that we've never done anything with. We were told it's not worth spraying and trimming them, they are too old. This year, the gal that lives in our basement advised us to get cider made from them. We've talked about that in the past but never did it. Her brother has an orchard and makes cider, so this was perfect. We got a huge ladder and got as many apples as we could off our 4 apple trees. Then we got to go watch them make cider. It was really neat. The boys were not thrilled about all the apple picking, but i kept telling them 'we're working for cider!' i think after they tasted the cider today they realized it was worth all the work! it was really good and neat to see how it's made:

The apples get put up top there...and get chopped up and pressed.

The juice trickles down into the long tray and goes through a filter, then gets sucked up into a huge tank. The final step. Putting the cider into containers and labeling them. The tank holds over 200 gallons of cider. We got 13 gallons from our apples.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Fall Decor and Family reunion prep

We were given some mums and pumpkins. Fall decorating has been fun!
For a family reunion over the weekend, we decided to try out our cauldron. We've had it for years but never used it. We did potatoes, carrots, and onions and it turned out good!!

Rod made the "contraption" that it's hanging on. He welded together the tripod at the top and chains down low. He left one side unwelded so it can collapse for storage. What this man doesn't think of...
We had a nice get together with Rod's grandmother's family. No time to take pictures of the actual event.