Friday, January 31, 2014

Hannah Kate went to her bible class for the last time Sunday. She will be moving up to the three year old class now. She loved this class & her teachers! 

Snow snow snow!!

Wednesday, Wesley took Hannah Kate out by herself. They made it about 1 minute before he accidentally slung her face first into the snow. Oops! They recovered! 

 I got brave yesterday & took both kids out by myself to enjoy snow one last time. Micaiah just laid on the tube....I thought he was going to go to sleep! I left him on it to put Bell in the coop. I came back & he was screaming. I asked Hannah Kate why & she said, "Cause I'm frowing snow on him!!" 

Monday, January 27, 2014


Uh oh....I became one of "those" people & took a diaper stash shot! 

Friday, January 24, 2014

I just asked Hannah Kate what it's called when animals sleep in winter...
"Hi-ber-neighbor!" .... A little too much Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood perhaps?

Real Food

*Sorry for the quality of pictures-this was very impromptu, so they are all pretty much from my phone. :)

We've recently been making some lifestyle changes in an effort to be healthier & eat REAL food.  I've had quite a few people ask me about this, so I thought it would make it easier to do a blog post & then be able to refer people to this.  Here we go:
In May of last year, we took a little trip to Bread Beckers to buy our grain mill & some buckets of wheat!  We made a big deal to Hannah Kate about how we were going to buy grain just like Joseph stored grain in the Bible.  When we got there, she wanted to know where the "green" was....I thought I had a picture of us at the store, but oh well.....we came back home & got to work on our first loaf of bread!
Freshly milled flour

Ingredients all ready to go

Add caption

Our first loaf of bread! 

That is our WonderMill in the background.  We have a Zojirushi BB-PAC20 Home Bakery Virtuoso Breadmaker, but you do not have to have a bread machine to make bread.  I use it about half of the time now & the other half of the time, I mix it in the machine then shape into two loaves to make two one pound loaves. I have never had a bread machine before, but the nice thing about the Zojirushi is that every setting is adjustable.  From my understanding, not all machines are like that, so if your bread machine is set to rise too long & the bread falls, there is not much you can do to fix it.  Another nice thing about the Zojirushi is it has memory settings, so I have the main kneading/rise/etc. times I use programmed in & all I do is push a button to start that process

That same week we also made yummy dinner rolls, Ezekiel brownies, & cinnamon rolls!

For Christmas, the kids' Bible class teachers got a jar of homemade spaghetti sauce & a loaf of tomato basil bread
Another huge favorite around here is waffles or pancakes made with Ezekiel mix.  It's the same rations as the bread God told Ezekiel to make in the Bible & makes a complete protein. You can purchase it already mixed from Bread Beckers or buy the ingredients & mix yourself (that's what we do).   It is a complete protein & they taste so good!  We freeze what we don't eat that morning & then the kids & I enjoy them for a quick breakfast later.

Okay, so here is the quick link info about starting your own bread making (& anything that uses flour-making!)!

~Bread Beckers, has TONS of GREAT classes available online in video format (for free) including handouts that you can download yourself.  They also have a free CD of the information on why real bread is so much better for you.  (Disclaimer: the info is WONDERFUL, but we do not agree with all of the religious information that she includes-some if it is interesting though! Wesley is pretty skeptical of most all "natural" or homeopathic stuff. Of course he had to walk in on one part that was questionable so he won't endorse all of the medical stuff on there. BUT, he will agree that it is GOOD for you. :) )  I ordered the free CD & listened to it, then watched Bread Making 101 to begin (Ashley demonstrates the different grain mills & the bread machine in this video too).  I have also watched several of the other videos & am in the process of watching the Healthy Eating Simplified video classes too.

~This series on Southern Savers about real bread is really good:
Organic vs Conventional Grains-Wheat
Milling Your Own Wheat & Saving Money (I was thankful to see that she points out that it can be inexpensive to eat healthier!)
Conventional vs Organic Bread

~I love the blog Heavenly Homemakers for lots of real food & freshly milled wheat recipes!

~We have the big red cookbook from Bread Beckers & use it all of the time.  Their basic bread recipe is the one we use.

~We have also switched to using honey granules in place of white sugar & sucanat in place of brown sugar.  They are cup for cup substitutions & in most things you cannot tell any difference.  They are so much better for your body & blood sugar.  We bought both of these from Bread Beckers to begin with & are currently getting sucanat from Azure Standard & looking into trying to get an order together for honey granules (if you are interested, please let me know).

~When we bought our first wheat, we got hard red, hard white, & soft white.  Since then, we have used up our soft white & decided not to buy any more of it.  Most things we made with it were really crumbly & we can use hard white for those things instead.  We have started buying our wheat from Azure Standard-very reasonably priced (hard red & hard white) .  We recently bought some kamut from there too & like it.  Wesley loves Heavenly Homemakers soft pretzels made with kamut.  Be sure you get the buckets & gamma lids to store your grain in safely! 
Edited to Add: For local people, I discovered today that Village Market has grains available for purchase in small amounts.  Since we don't have any soft white wheat & I decided I wanted some to make Hannah Kate's birthday cake, I bought 3 pounds of it today.  The price was much cheaper than I expected it to be there.  That is an option if you want a small amount of something or are in a pinch & need it quickly.

The biggest thing that people ask is, "Isn't it more expensive?"  There is a good chunk of money you spend up front because you have to buy the equipment, but after that it is not so bad.  Plus, think about the money you are probably saving in medical stuff because you are healthier!

Hopefully, that is all of the important info all in one place.  If there is anything I left out or you have questions, please let me know & I will add it to this post! HUGE thanks to Christy & Beth for their encouragement on this change for our family. We still have lots of room for improvement & enjoy eating out as our budget allows, but we are making better choices on our food & are thankful for that!

Happy Cooking!

I have linked the appliances to our Amazon affiliate store.  Apparently, we can receive some sort of compensation if someone clicks to purchase through that link, but of course we are only recommending these items because we use & love them.  :)  (We bought our breadmaker from Amazon) You can also check eBay for those items & might find a great deal there. 

I just asked Hannah Kate what it's called when animals sleep in winter...
"Hi-ber-neighbor!" .... A little too much Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood perhaps?


Micaiah broke his first lamp last night. Thankfully no one was injured!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hannah Kate 35 Months

Clothing Size: 2T-3T
Shoe Size: 8

~Common sayings: "What will be their names?" (If I say we are going to see someone later), "What are you talking about to Daddy?" (alllll. the. time.), "Mom! Mom! Mom!" or "mommommommom!" (No more "Mommy please will you get me up please" from bed...sadness!) "Will you pray for me to feel better?" (in a pitiful voice with her hands folded)  "Where will we go after my nap?" (even at bedtime) "Welllll"
~Hannah Kate is serious about praying for people if she thinks they are sick.  It is the sweetest thing, she will bow, fold her hands, & pray or ask me to pray. As soon as we say amen, she asks if they are all better now.
~Hannah Kate LOVES Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood-on PBS & Netflix-she is singing songs from the show or quoting it all of the time.  I love it because they teach great things like "you can take a turn & then I'll get it back" or "when you have to go potty STOP & go right away!" I bought the soundtrack from Amazon & she loves it playing in her room.
~She also loves Dora still as well as building blocks, playing with her kitchen items & all of her food.  She spent all morning playing with real potatoes on her play plates.  She said, "Mommy, we're going to have tomato sauce!"  I said, "Well, those are potatoes."  She quickly replied, "We're going to have potato sauce! It will be so yummy!"  Good cooks are flexible, I guess.
~She does well with her memory verses still.  We've also been trying KidSing, but she is not so great at that.  We need to be more consistent, but she also doesn't have a great attention span for it.  We've gotten halfway through the first card, but she is hit or miss at knowing them.  Before nap, we went through her ABC Bible Verses & she knew every one that we have covered!
~She LOVES Bible class!
~Her BIG thing right now is, "I want to go to a rest-au-rant! After Bible class & worship, we will go to a restaurant with our friends, Mommy!" This girl could break our budget! At least she loves to socialize & fellowship!  Her favorite is "chips & sauce."
~She is now in a big girl bed.  It's a toddler bed with a half rail....she's managed to fall off once & I have found her sideways on foot of the bed twice, once hanging off of the bed from the waist down.  I do not know how to keep her in.  The first night in the new bed, she got the stomach virus.  After I had cleaned everything up, she looked at it & said, "Mommy, I do NOT want to sleep in THAT bed!" She ended up in the crib (it's still up in hopes that Micaiah will move in soon), got sick there, & spent the rest of the night in the recliner in the sunroom.  The next night, she went to the toddler bed again with no problems.
~Even though she sings about sharing like Daniel Tiger, she doesn't practice it very well! She does not love Micaiah getting her toys or tearing down her towers.  We are working on that.
~She loves to pet Micaiah or give him kisses before bed & to feed him.  She feeds him food & says, "I am a good mommy!" It's the sweetest thing.
~She can remember stuff so well. I put a shirt on her the other day, & she said, "I weared this shirt when I went to the doctor," ...... in September! I don't even remember what she wore then!
~We have had several baptisms recently at our congregation & Hannah Kate talks about one girl in particular & says, "I'm so glad she's a Christian!" She also frequently says, "I don't want to go to Heaven." I keep trying to explain that she isn't necessarily going right now :) I wonder what an almost three year old mind thinks Heaven really is!  After those baptisms, at another service, someone responded asking for prayers.  She saw them & said, "Who is going to Heaven now?!" Also, after the baptisms one night, she kept looking at the baptistery & told me, "Jesus is IN that water!" So sweet!
~We sure love this girl, but since Christmas, she has given us a run for our money in the behavior department.  She has experimented a lot with the words "no," "I'm won't come to you," etc. & getting lots of extra discipline for fit throwing & being defiant.  I am sure she is just testing the waters, but WHEW! Every time though, she comes to us & apologizes within a few minutes (by herself) for disobeying.
~She loves to cook & to make things for people.  We were preparing soup for the homeless shelter last week & I was explaining that the people didn't have homes to live in.  She immediately asked "What will be their names," then, "Can we build a house for them?" What a tender heart!

~She loves eating salads, cucumbers, dip!
~She is a good shopper!

She is the sweetest thing & we are HUGELY blessed by having her in our lives!

 Took these pictures with her Dora backpack for her Dora birthday party invitations!


This morning we have made homemade cream of mushroom soup & homemade onion soup mix for our crock pot roast tonight, done some dishes & laundry & made our reservations for Polishing the Pulpit lodging. What a productive morning! 

Monday, January 20, 2014

One year ago

I am so thankful that our sweet boy is healthy! This time last year he was in PICU with RSV. This is the middle of RSV season. Please be careful around babies & little ones. What was just a cold in someone else became RSV & a hospital stay for Micaiah.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Hannah Kate's Birthday Project

Here is a wish list for Hannah Kate's birthday project. You can order & have them shipped to us if you are not local. These are just ideas-we are accepting all new or gently used blankets: receiving, swaddle, regular, or sleep sacks. Of course, knitted or crocheted blankets or hats are appreciated too! Thanks & let me know if you have any questions! 

Wednesday, January 8, 2014


It is a blessing to witness someone be baptized for the remission of sins & become a Christian, but it is something else to experience that with a 2 year old in my lap. :) Explaining & asking questions to make sure she understands really makes me focus more on what is happening & be even more thankful for the gift of salvation. Hannah Kate's comments tonight were precious. Several times she said,"I am so glad she is a Christian now!" Once, she pointed to the baptistery & said, "Jesus is in there! He's in the water!" (Well yes but not literally!) & when I asked her why Meredith was being baptized, she said, "So she can see Jesus!!" This girl is such a blessing! 
(Acts 2:38, 1Peter 3:21; John 3:3-5; Acts 22:16; Romans 6:3-8; Colossians 2:12; Galatians 3:26-27; Mark 16:15-16; Acts 8:34-39) 

NICU-3rd Birthday!

The 3rd birthday is quickly coming! Although we haven't set Hannah Kate's party date for sure yet, she will be collecting baby blankets for her birthday project. Vanderbilt NICU does a "swaddled in love" blanket drive each February & we would love to help with that. (If you had saved other things we have collected for the NICU before, we will gladly take that too)
So, if you'd like to celebrate Hannah Kate & our Rachel & Leah's 3rd birthday by helping sweet babies, we'd love your help!!