Monday, September 26, 2011

To The Extreme

If you have read my blog for a months then you know that I recently started a new job.  I actually went back to financial compliance, which is what I was doing before I became a litigation paralegal.  I love my job and I am incredibly impressed with the company I work for.  I can honestly say that this company is rooted in its core values: 
  1. We are family
  2. We strive for excellence
  3. We bring honor to the team
  4. We have FUN!
  5. We act with a servant's heart.
I see these values in action every single day and it has been my privilege to join them in working out of these core values.  This week, there is a group of workers going out to the airport to welcome in some troops.  Anytime the troops come home, someone is there to welcome them.  I love this - I love that fact that this company is proud to honor and thank the men & women serving our country.  This company definitely loves and support our community, and this year is no exception!

Every year, the company does an all-out campaign to raise money for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.  We raise money for an entire month, then, as a company, we participate in and sponsor the Fort Worth JDRF Walk for a Cure!

So in an effort to help in the campaign and raise money for JDRF, I am offering a Great Grabbie Designs special!  My goal is to raise $250 - will you help me???
Click on the image to direct you to the Great Grabbie Designs website to get more details, or place your order!
Beginning today, ALL monies received by Great Grabbie Designs will be donated to the JDRF campaign.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Craft Day

Brant and I are incredibly lucky to be members of a great church, Walnut Ridge.  We love our church family and have built some incredible friendships.  Even though Brant and I both teach in the youth group, we are still members of a Sunday School class, One.  It is a class of young marrieds without children - we are the exception but we couldn't bear to leave after Em was born!  

One thing I love about our class is the social events.  This Saturday, Jalah hosted a craft day at her house, and the guys hung out at Derek and Emily's house for College Football day!  We all met and had a big breakfast, then headed over to Jalah's for craft day.  Jalah had sent everyone a link to the Nester's Wreath Party a few weeks back, and everyone brought the supplies for the wreath they wanted to make.  Several ladies (including myself) made the coffee filter wreath.  If you haven't checked this linky party out - you should!  There are some amazing wreaths made from everyday "stuff" you have around the house!

Here is our work table as we started to get down to business.  From L to R - Megan, Kristen, Amanda and Jalah.

Here are Amanda's projects.  She did a small coffee filter wreath, and the burlap wreath.  how awesome is that burlap wreath, especially once she puts her big fall bow on the top?  I just loved this idea, so I plan on making one as well!

Jalah made a coffee filter wreath, but she did this coffee filter Christmas tree last year for our ladies Christmas banquet.  She helped all of us with our coffee filter wreaths since she knew what she was going - and we did not!  I just love this idea.  You might see a few of these in my house for Christmas decorations this year!

And here is my wreath.  I am very happy with the way it turned out, and I have the perfect place for it.  Lil Miss came with Momma because Daddy had to work.  I just took her travel swing and she was a perfect angel all day long.  I don't know that she ever even whimpered.  She was just happy to be with the girls! 

Friday, September 16, 2011

Fabulous Five {Months}

Well Miss Em,
You are now 5 months old and just the cutest little thing I have ever laid eyes on!  You are growing and changing everyday and I cannot believe how big you are getting.

You are still an easy-going, laid back baby.  You just go with the flow and have fun!  Last weekend, we went on a mini-vacation with all of our friends to Austin, TX.  You never even made a peep in the car and were the happiest baby all weekend.  Everyone loved holding you and playing with you.

You can now roll over from your back to your tummy and you love to play on the ground.  You really like your excersaucer too, although you try to eat all of the toys on it.  At 4 months old we put you in it for the first time and your feet couldn't touch the ground.  We had to put a pillow under you.  Now, just one short month later, you feet can touch the ground and you can "jump".  TV is your new "friend".  You love to watch all the bright colors and movement.

You are wearing 3-6 month clothes.  Some of your pj's are even 6-9 months just because you are so long.  Momma has had to buy special pj's without feet so that you can wear them longer.  You still sleep through the night.  You go to sleep around 8:30 and I have to wake you up at 6:30 in the morning so that I can feed you before I go to work.  You have 4-5 7oz. bottles of formula everyday and one serving of fruit and cereal in the evenings.  You LOVE to eat your cereal.  You're beginning to lose some of your hair and its growing back blonde like your daddy. 

You love to talk, laugh and sing when we are in the car.  You are always reaching out to touch thing.  You love to pet Dax and you giggle when he comes near you.  You are still the brightest ray of sunshine in our lives and you make your daddy and I smile every, single day.  We are so in love with you! 

Emmalee, being your momma is the {still} the best thing I have ever done!  I love you!

Because Em is always on the move now, I had a heck of a time trying to get her 5 month picture.  Here is the best one.  

And here are the ones in between!

"Can I roll over and play yet?"

"Oooohhh, my feet!"
"Mom, can we stop taking pictures now.  I just want to eat my feet!"

And here is my favorite of the day! What a cutie!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Easy Crockpot Favorites

So my new job is going great and I love being home earlier every night.  I actually changed my hours from 8-5 to 7:30-4:30, so I get to pick up Em from her sitter, and am home by around 5:10 or 5:15.  Its AWESOME!  I thought I would go alot more "new" meals and try out some new recipes, and I might in the future, but right now I am loving my crockpot again because I love having extra time with Em.  Last night I did meatball subs, and all I have to do was slice the onion and toast the bread - everything else was ready when I got home.  So, I know so many of you love your crockpot just like I love mine, so I thought I'd share a few more recipes with you - and this are EASY breezy!

NOTE:  If you have not invested in crcokpot liner - YOU NEED TO!  They can be found in the grocery store next to the ziplock bags.  It is a box of 3-4 liners, but they are WONDERFUL because all you do is throw them away and simply rinse your crockpot! 

Just a tip about this recipe, you can also make lots of meatballs and add 2 cans/jars of sauce and then save your leftovers for spaghetti and meatballs. 
1) Line the crockpot w/ your crockpot liner!
2) Throw in your meatballs (frozen).  I just use the frozen meatballs you can find at the grocery store.  My Kroger has Italian style meatballs and that is what I use.  I cook about 6 meatballs for every sub I'm going to make. 
3) Add a jar of marinara sauce - I use a very inexpensive sauce then I add my own spices for flavor.  I use garlic, onion powder, oregano and basil.
4) Add about 1 cup of water
5) Cook on low for 6-8 hours
6) Toast your bread - I use hoagie rolls!
7) Fill up your rolls w/ meatballs and lots of sauc3, add slices onions and some cheese (either mozzarella or provolone - and I stick mine back int he oven for about 5 minutes to let the cheese melt)
8) ENJOY!!!!!


SOOOO simple and SOOOO delicious!!!!!
1) Make a spice rub for your ribs. I use equal parts salt, garlic, paprika and just a pinch of fresh ground pepper.
2) Rub - and I mean RUB - down your ribs.  Make sure they are good and covered with the spice rub. 
3) Broil on high for about 15 minutes to let them brown.
4) Slice 'em up and throw in your crockpot with a jar (I only used 1/2 the jar) of your favorite BBQ sauce.
5) Cook on low for 8 hours!

This is an awesome recipe, especially if you are on a budget because you can get a whole chicken for around $5, but it will feed several people!  This is so good and the meat will just fall off the bone. 
1) Thaw out your chicken
2) Make a spice rub - I used equal parts of salt, garlic, onion powder, rosemary and basil.
3) Rub your spice rub on your chicken - make sure you get under the skin wherever you can.
4) Make four 3-4" foil balls and put them in the bottom of your crockpot.
5) Put your chicken on the foil balls and cook on low for 6-8 hours. 

Hope you enjoy these EASY crockpot favorites!!!