Sunday, December 30, 2018


I can't say I am sad to see a new year begin as 2018 was one of the worst years.  Sure I've had tough moments in years past, but nothing like a whole year of yuck.  Good news is that it's behind me and forward I go.

It's time to put up a new calendar and enjoy a fresh start.  Obviously, you can't erase everything, yet mentally it feels like a fresh start.

This is the year that I am going to keep moving forward.  I'm going into the year feeling better mentally.  I still have my days when I struggle and stress is a big factor with my anxiety.  I am finding that the anxious feeling is coming on less and less.

I set up a breakfast for my family recently.  Simple donuts and milk.  I went to Chuck later and told him that I felt real joy in doing that task.  It's been a long time since I felt that kind of joy.  I can feel that I am moving forward and I'm so thankful!

One of the big things last year is that we accured quite a bit of debt.  Both of our vehicles needed to have their transmission rebuilt.  Our furnace went out and we had to purchase a new furnace and air conditioning unit.  There is medical debt from where Chuck injured his ankle and debt from where Megan had to have some heart testing. We took a vacation that I knew we couldn't afford. We were eating out a ton and I knew things were a mess.

I spent a morning going through each debt and making a list.  Seeing those figures in black and white, totaled up was shocking.  You see,  my state of mind last year lead to an I don't care mentality.  Bad, bad, bad as it lead to overspending, using credit, and not keeping good records.

I told Chuck that we needed to talk so we jumped into his truck (that I affectionally call Trusty Rusty *smile*) and headed through the Chick-fil-A  drive thru.  We grabbed drinks and then found a parking lot to sit in.  I handed him the list of debt and then waited,  To my surprise he took it all with grace.  He accepted responsibility for his part.  Not saying no to eating out or questioning my spending.  Also for not taking over the finances when I was at my worse and asked him to. We both know that we have played a part in our financial disaster.

All of that to say that we will be changing our spending as we start our debt free journey.  We've played at it in the past, but haven't had the desire or amount of debt we currently have. I haven't decided yet if I am going to share our total debt.  I might start by sharing our lowest debt in the sidebar.  Then I will update it as we pay it down.  In the end you all will know our debt total.  I have been talking about frugal living and then I bottomed out so it is hard for me to share how far we fell.  I may get more comfortable sharing as we embark on our debt free journey.

As I move forward I am going to take better care of me.  I don't mean that in a selfish way either.  I need to get my weight down.  Before I started taking anxiety medication I was self medicating with chocolate.  I know that it will be a long and hard journey, but I need to change so that I feel better.  I also need to make time to spend in the Word.  Not a quick read, but a quiet time to meditate on what I am reading.

I need to be in the Word so that I can see God's plan for me as a homemaker, wife, mother, and most importantly a child of God.  I feel like I bought into the world telling me that I need to spend, I need to keep up with trends, I need to vacation like every one else, live like everyone else, and basicly allowed all of this to make me feel like I was unworthy.  I can now see that comparison and buying into the lies of the world did not bring me happiness.  In reality it brought me to my knees. As hard as it has been, it might not have been a bad thing as it has changed my mindset.  I can now see that God will use the hard to mold and change a person.

And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2

Another change is going to be in my home.  I plan to declutter again and I have a project or two planned.  Very frugal projects like painting and changing up decor (with items I aleady have).  I also plan to get back to basics.  Monthly/weekly menu planning.  Cooking more from scratch and lessening our food waste.  Last year was bad! I'd like to increase my pantry stock.  I also want to developing some new routines. All in all I want to make changes for my home to once again feel like a haven.

I am hoping to post regularly, but I won't guarentee that it will happen.  I love blogging and reading blogs, yet I love my family more. I don't feel like I was truly present last year and moving forward that will be my number one goal... more time present with my family.

I am ready to see what 2019 has in store.  Ready, set,.. keep moving forward! Happy New Year, friends!

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Tidings of Good Cheer

We've had a fun, full month leading up to Christmas. The day after Thanksgiving we had our traditional Rudolph pancake breakfast before the decorating began.
No great decorating pictures this year.  We put the tree up, added lights and realized that we needed a new tree.  It was literally raining needles.  Oh, what a mess it was!  

Of course there has been shopping trips.  It's fun to shop with Megan.  (Well, most of the time.)
Our last shopping trip involved a trip to the mall.  We stopped to listen to the piano player and enjoyed the department store display. 
Cookies have been made and enjoyed. 
Me and my sidekick.  I know many who talk about missing their children when they were younger.  I enjoy all of the ages.  I find the independence and know how of a twelve year old to be fun when doing things together. 
We are slowly getting settled in our new church.  We enjoyed a wonderful Christmas program.  
There has been evenings spent out and about looking at lights.  The window display at a local antique mall is by far my favorite. 
Saturday we ventured south to a little town with an old time candy shop. We went to watch candy canes being made. Fun!
Our first family gathering will be tomorrow afternoon.  This afternoon was spent getting the goodie trays ready to go.  
All the cards are sent, presents are wrapped, treats are baked and most importantly my heart is in the right place as we celebrate the birth of our Savior.  I'm thankful for all of you who stop by and read my little space on the web.  
From my family to yours.... Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 04, 2018

Christmas Cards

One of my favorite things about Christmas is Christmas photos/cards.  I love to send them and receive them.  I call them happy mail.  I will be sending our 2018 Christmas greeting the first of next week.  If anyone would like to exchange cards then shoot me an e-mail with your information.

Thursday, November 22, 2018


This year we stayed close to home for Thanksgiving.  I was tasked to make some desserts.  Wednesday night my sidekick and I got busy.  
I'll let you in a secret... everything I made came from a box.  Gasp!  I am giving myself grace.  If I don't have the time (which I didn't this year) to cook from scratch, then so be it.  Relaxing my hard on myself standards are a good thing.

Since our drive to dinner was under fifteen minutes we were able to have a slow morning. 
 We enjoyed our traditional cinnamon rolls and watched the parade.  It was delightful to not be rushing around to finish food and heading out for a road trip. 
Megan doctored her shirt.  It said "Happiness" and she taped over part of it to say Thankfulness.  She called it her comfy and festive shirt.  Ha! Ha! 
The whole gang was at my parents.  There was good food and a ton of laughs. We left with yummy leftovers and many memories stored away. 
Once home we relaxed and finished off the evening with a holiday classic. 

O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever. 1 Chronicles 16:34

I hope your day was full of food, family, new memories, and thankfulness. 

May you find joy in the journey as you chase your life!

Sunday, November 04, 2018

Hello November

November is one of my favorite months. I love the crisp morning air, the smell of the fallen leaves, beauty of the leaves still holding on, and the sight of  freshly harested fields. Oh, and Thanksgiving. It's one of those holidays that require food, family, and more food. That is the only expectation. So, I welcome November with open arms.
November started off with monthly grocery shopping and meal planning.  
I made a trip to Meijer, Kroger, WalMart and Sams.  Have to hit the loss leaders to stretch the budget and keep the pantry stocked.  My pantry and freezer are now full of good stuff.  I was hopeful to not return until the week before Thanksgiving.  I forgot to get a two liter of cola for making pulled pork and it looks like our supply of milk won't hold out that long.  Bummer, but at least the list is short.

How did you do with the time change?  The only good thing about it is that for a few weeks I wake up earlier.
I was rewarded with a beautiful sunrise Sunday morning.  Then came evening with the early sunset.  Boo!  I'm not a fan of the early darkness.

  We left home at 9:30 this morning and didn't return until after 3:30.  We were invited by a family we meet this morning at church to join them for lunch.  She came up and introduced herself and chatted for a few.  She then returned a few minutes later and invited us her home. She said that she felt the Lord nudging her to do so.  It turned out to be the pastors' daughter.  After we arrived the pastor and his wife walked in.  Turns out that she makes a large lunch for her family and parents each Sunday.  It was a wonderful afternoon.

One of things Chuck and I have talked and prayed about is finding a church were we felt welcomed and wanted.  It seems that the Lord is answering our prayers.

The time change and a busy day have left this girl tired.  It's off to bed with me so I can be fresh for the morning.  

May you find joy in the journey as you chase your life!

Monday, October 29, 2018

Fall in Indiana

I thought I would take you on a photo journey of what Fall looks like in central Indiana. The first fun activity is a trip to the apple orchard.
Yummy honeycrisp! 
Harvest is in full swing.  
Once we leave our suburban area we see corn and soybean fields. 
The leaves have finally started to change.  The show hasn't been as incredible this years.  There are mostly yellow and orange mixed in with the still green leaves. 
My father-law-in has woods at the back of his propety.  Chuck and I were able to take a stroll through the woods over the weekend. 
October means that the pumpkins patches are open for business. 
There are bon fires to enjoy on cool nights with family and friends.  

Lastly is the view from my front door.  
I love that I live in an area where I am able to enjoy the change of season.

May you find joy in the journey as you chase your life!

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Joy in the Ordinary

Look around, really look around and you will find joy... joy in the everyday... joy in the ordinary things.

I've been using my mini crockpots to help with dinner on busy days.  This day I made my my sides and let them warm until dinner.  
We went out for burgers on Monday and I was surprised to see that the restaurant was already decorated for Christmas.  They even had a fully decorated tree in the entry.  Way to early! 
My two favorites. 
Cousin fun at the orchard. 
It makes me happy to open this cabinet and see my stash of laundry detergent.  I bought each bottle for 99 cents. Yeah for deals to fill the pantry! 
School is taking over the kitchen!  This board was put to write the days work and weekly Bible verse it's working well.

A random shot by Megan.  She said, "hey Mama, smile."

May you find joy in the journey as you chase your life!