Thursday, July 31, 2014

We’re Missing Our Minnesota Twins

I would have to say one of my goals is to raise baseball fanatics. I was given a challenge by the Fanatics website to talk about our love and experience with baseball. It will be extremely had to narrow that down.

What do I talk about?

Do I talk about how one year I decided it would be a fun birthday present for my oldest son to go to a baseball game? We went on one of the Promotion games. He and his friend each got wooden baseball bats. That set us up for going to a minimum of one game every year. We always…ALWAYS went to the promotion game. We switched from baseball bats to jerseys.

Do I talk about the year that I won tickets to the new Target Field and we had seats that were about 5 rows up from the field behind 1st base? Best seats EVER! It’s the same game where I videotaped him singing along with Journey:

Do I talk about our last game that we went to two years ago? Well, as a family, at least? We were one row down from the top wall. lol I have to admit, I MAY have had a panic attack. hahahaha I don’t remember who the Twins played, but I’m pretty sure we lost. Our Minnesota teams may not be the best, but they have very loyal fans.
Twins flags
Now, our biggest baseball challenge may come at the end of August. I’m planning on taking the boys to a Twins vs Orioles game in Baltimore. I keep seeing my oldest daughter going to games at Target Field, and we’re jealous.

Hello, the All Star game was played at Target Field this year! It was there and we were here! Just about killed me to miss that! The last time it was played in Minneapolis it was at the Metrodome in 1985. I didn’t know about the Twins back then and didn’t care about them. Now, my kids and I know and love our Twins!

Who’s your favorite baseball team? Would you say you’re a fanatic?

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Kids And Financial Responsibility

I didn’t grow up with a good understanding of money management. The only thing I managed to do was spend it. When my girls turned 16 it was important to me that they learn to budget their money. The money they earned wasn’t there for them to just blow it on whatever they wanted.

When they got their first car it was with the understanding they would pay for their own car insurance, maintenance, and gas. Not only that, they had to pay for their own monthly phone bills.
First Day of Work
At the beginning of July, my oldest son got his first job. I thought it would be a great idea. Well, it is, except for the fact that he has to rely on me for transportation since he’s only 15, and the job he got has him working mostly on weekends. That would all be fine and dandy if we didn’t have most of our weekends planned already.

We usually go to VA to spend one weekend every month with my parents. There’s always something going on, some holiday or birthday. Last weekend Fred and I had to cancel our mystery train dinner with my family because Buddy is working. I had no way to get him to and from work.

Yea, I sort of shot myself in the foot in my haste to have Buddy get a job. It was all fun and games until his job cramped our weekend style. I’m thankful that this weekend he was able to take Saturday off because we’re heading to the ocean.

Alright, all of that said for me to get to this. It is SO important for our kids to learn time and money management. It was hard on me as a single mom because there was a level of guilt that my girls had to pay for a lot of the things they wanted that I couldn’t afford when I lived in MN.

My oldest has come back to me, thanking me that I made it so she had to work at a young age. I mean, she was 16 (so was her sister) when she got a job at The Marketplace in town. At college she knew so many people who had so little responsibility because they didn’t have to work or pay for anything. She felt like she was hand over fist ahead of the kids the same age as her. I want the same thing for my boys.

I have a better paying job now and things are somewhat easier, even without my ex paying child support. My boys will have a somewhat less financially stressful life because of where I am with my job. That doesn’t mean THEIR responsibility will be any less.

My boys will need to save at least half of their paycheck, tithe 10%, and have spending money with the rest. Buddy already knows he wants a smartphone. We all know it’s not that simple. It’s not just about getting a phone. There’s the monthly bill and not going over on data or minutes. He also can’t get the phone immediately. He has to have his job for a few months before he’s able to get a new phone and new phone bill.
Malachi 310
What Buddy is starting to experience is having money burning away in his pocket. When we went to the movies last weekend, he wanted a $4 box of candy. I refused at first. I can’t stomach spending that much money on a box of candy at the movies. I tried explaining to him how ridiculous it is to spend that kind of money, but sometimes they have to learn the hard way.

Down the road he can look back and hopefully see that it wasn’t money well spent and that sometimes he needs to step back and see that it’s a “want in the moment” feeling. My hope is that he will experience tough choices while under my roof, and with some guidance, so he will have a parent alongside him.

What ways do you teach your kids to be financially responsible?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

My How Time Flies

I see it every day. Someone talking about how fast their kids are growing up. Their son will be turning TWO! How is their daughter going into kindergarten in the fall? Their son is getting a driver's license. You know what I'm talking about, right? I mean, even I talk about it! Me, who already has two grown daughters. I know beyond a shadow of a doubt how fast time goes.

Do you look at the world around you and see the impact it has on how fast your life goes by? Mostly the retail industry does this to us. I worked in retail for 6 yrs. I never felt like I got to enjoy the moment/season I was in because of it.

Did you notice two weeks ago all of the back to school supplies that came out? lol For goodness sakes, It was barely the 2nd week of July. I also started getting back to school (BTS) emails from PR companies wanting me to write about it. I just couldn't, and can't do it. The boys have only been out of school since June 18th. They go back at the end of August.

I want to enjoy JULY! I want to enjoy SUMMER!

Who here is celebrating Christmas in July? lol I can't do it. I can't even think about Christmas. I'm seeing it everywhere though. No. I refuse. It's SUMMER! I'm enjoying it!

In retail, Halloween goes out the 2nd week of August. No later than September 10th, Christmas planning and set up begins. So much for enjoying fall, tis the season. My goodness!

What about today? Today is a summer day. Today will be gone in the blink of an eye.

Your newborn will be crawling. Then they'll be walking. Then they'll be counting. Then they'll be...! Our lives pass us by so quickly. I want to enjoy the days we're given, not looking forward to the next season. Not being pushed by the world around us to speed up life by thinking about what's going to happen in another month. I want to live in today.

My daughters. Man, I remember when they were little. Their pudgy little legs. Them wanting to be held all of the time. Them going into elementary school, and then when middle school showed up, seemingly out of the blue, and all of a sudden, boom there was high school. Now my oldest is in her 2nd year of Graduate School and my 2nd oldest is gone for a year doing a mission trip in 11 different countries. My oldest son will learn to drive in the next year and my youngest goes off to middle school in August. I'm telling you. It happened overnight. I'm truly not kidding. Yes, some days, months, and years felt like they lasted longer than others, but they're gone. My kids grew up under my nose, without asking permission.

Cherish the days you've been given. Love the moments you share with your loved ones. Look at and live in the here and now as much as you can.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Wordless Wednesday: Daughters

My daughter, Smooch, has a friend, Zoey Cole, who took some photos of my girls and Smooch’s bff from home, Mac. I have to tell you, Zoey captured my girls SO perfectly. I’m eternally grateful she allowed me to share the photos here!

Three Sisters Collage

My Girls


Smooch n Z

Thank you Zoey for this gift of my girls in photos! Such a beautiful blessing. In case no one can tell, I’m over the moon about my girls! Be sure to check out Zoey on LinkedIn!

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Summer Days at Busch Gardens

Here we are, mid-July and I still feel like we have so much good weather left, I can hardly look ahead to the next couple of months! We started our summer off with a trip to Busch Gardens right after the kids got out of school. It was the perfect way to kick off summer vacation!
The boys and I went last year and had so much fun, we wanted to do it with Fred and his kids! It seems that as each year goes by, I want to be the one taking photos while the boys want to do more and more rides. I’m totally down with that! Well, add in Fred and his kids who love the scary rides, and you have GOT to know it was an adventurous day.
We started out at Escape From Pompeii, which is the perfect way to start the day…pretty darn wet! It’s a fun ride that gets stinkin’ hot as you travel through the ruins of Pompeii because it sends out huge blasts of fire above each boat as though you’re experiencing the volcano.

From there, everyone wanted to do Apollo’s Chariot, except Doodle and I. I did it last year, so I know the ride. The big dip is, BIG, and totally freaks me out! hahahaha So, the roller coaster is definitely doing it’s job. If you can get past the first drop, you’re golden.
The Trade Wind
We all went on The Trade Wind. I remember this being my mom’s favorite ride when I was growing up. One part of the ride that I miss is that they don’t go backwards any more. You used to go around and around, then they’d stop the ride and you’d go around and around backwards. This is more my speed!

Our next stop was the Roman Rapids. We got there at just the right time. It’s probably one of the longest waits we had for any of the park’s rides. We had to go in two different tubes because there were 7 of us. Kgirl brought a friend. Unfortunately, neither of our rides got any of us very wet. We were pretty bummed, but you can’t control where your tube will go.
The Verbolten is what both of my boys were looking forward to the most. Fred’s never been to Busch Gardens before, but his kids have, so they knew the “surprise” of this ride. Yes, I went on this roller coaster, twice. Yes, it scares the stink out of me, but Fred seemed amused by the amount of screaming I was doing!
Aside from Buddy and I, the rest of the crew went through the Curse of DarKastle. We tried asking them about the “ride”, but it seemed like it was hard for them to explain. It’s a 3D ride, and it seems like pretty much anyone can go on it. No one seemed very scared, but the name of the “ride” made me decide to pass. lol
Le Scoot with boys
We also headed to another one of my favorite rides, the Le Scoot where we all got pretty good and wet! YAY! The boys and I weren’t interested in going on the Alpengeist, one of those roller coasters where your legs dangle down and you go upside down and all around. While they went on that, my boys and I went to the Le Catapult (aka The Scrambler).
Roller Coasters
Mboy had convinced Fred to go on the Griffon with him. bahahahaha You will NEVER see me getting on that ride. EVER! The boys and I watched that ride numerous times the first time we went to Busch Gardens and we all agreed that it was NOT a ride for us. Oh my goodness, they loved it. You will HAVE to watch the video on their site and my Instagram to get an idea of what the Griffon is like. You dangle at the top of this roller coaster and then…I’m getting queasy just thinking about it. They went on it TWICE! Crazy!
Riding the Griffon
Doodle wanted to do the Der Autobahn (bumper cars) and Mboy wanted to play a soccer game. We ended by doing Europe in the Air, which was fun because Fred’s kids were leaving a few days later to spend 2 weeks in Europe!
Deciding on a Ride
We literally closed down the park. I couldn’t believe it. We left at 10pm. I was really bummed we didn’t get to see the Clydesdales. For some reason, we always go to the left when we walk into the park and miss the animals like Jack Hannah’s Wild Reserve and the wolf areas. I remember (again) last year we saw a herd of sheep being walked through the park. SO cool. Next time we go to the right first!

It was such a good and full day at the park. I wish we weren’t 3+ hours away. I’m pretty sure we could spend our entire summer there if given the opportunity! We’ll be back again in either August or September. Hmmmm maybe we’ll do Water Country USA next time. The boys and I love a good waterpark!

Are you a roller coaster rider?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Summer Lovin’, Havin’ A Blast #ad

Healthy Essentials Campaign
This is our first full summer in Maryland and it’s actually been very beautiful. It got warm here much sooner than it ever did in Minnesota. That meant we were pulling out our summer clothing and protection a couple months earlier than normal! That’s a win for us.

Our first big day outside was with Doodle’s Field Day at the the of the school year. First, it was stinkin’ hot. Second, I’ve never seen so many water games played in one spot, especially for a Field Day! It was awesome. I made sure to lather the boys up with some necessary Healthy Essentials!
Water Fight
From that day on, we’ve had some fun and amazing days in the sun. We have a new friend from church who lives right down the road. She invited us over to swim in her pool. It was so fun! Seems many people around here have pools in their backyards. I guess that’s what you do when you don’t have 10,000+ lakes around you.
Pool Time
Pool Play
From pool time at a friend’s to pool time with all of the 5th graders for their promotion party, this kid has spent a lot of time in the sun and water. Of course, I’ve had the benefit of sitting pool side while he gets wet! Yay me!
Promotion Pool Party
Ok, and a "mom” reminder, be sure to monitor your kids when they’re putting on their own skin protection. Doodle didn’t spray his shoulders or up by his neck so they were a bit pink by the end of the afternoon. Usually he’s fully covered because I put it on him. Lesson learned.P1000958
I’ll be honest with you, until last summer, I spent most of my summers laying in the sun. Yes, I know, a bad choice with the possibility of skin cancer with all of that sun exposure. I decided it was time to embrace the pasty white skin I’m not used to and either didn’t spend much time outside or if I did, I was slathered in lotion. As you can see, I was sitting under an umbrella in the shade, but put lotion on about 15 minutes before I hopped into the pool for the adult swim time.
At the end of the day, Doodle noticed he’d scratched himself up a bit and thankfully I had Neosporin and Band Aid bandages on hand! Not only that, he lost a tooth while we were there! lol What a crazy promotion party!
At the end of June the 6 of us went south for the day to play at an Amusement Park. Actually, there were 7 of us because K-girl brought a buddy along. Our first task was to lather up as soon as we exited the car. I had to be careful with the spray because wind was blowing so crazy. We backed up the spray with the lotion and I brought them both with us so we could reapply if needed.
Next week we head out for a local vacation destination and we’ll be taking the mesh yellow bag with all of our outdoor necessities with us! Would you expect anything less? =)

Before the end of the month shows up, be sure to grab these amazing printable coupons, tips & tools and so much more for all the products you and your family love. You can save more than $45 by visiting

What do you make sure you always have on hand for time in the sun?

Saturday, July 5, 2014

$150 Target Gift Card Giveaway Blogger Opp!

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Messing Up My Blog In Epic Fashion

So, the other day, Fred and I were looking through my photos in Google+ and I saw that I had duplicates of hundreds of photos. I thought that was just dumb to have 2 of every photo. I mean, what’s the point, right?

So, I think I deleted about 1500 photos. Pretty nice amount, right? Feeling pretty dang accomplished.

And THEN…I visited my newly fixed blog to find an older blog post and guess what?


Yes, in all of my brilliance of cleaning up duplicates, I inadvertently deleted all of the photos on my blog…to at least a year ago! So, this is what all of my blog posts for at least, at a minimum, the past year look like:

No pics

See all of those circles? Those are supposed to be photos!!! GAH!

Do you have ANY clue how long it’s going to take me to fix all of these broken photos? It will literally take me days to fix them. I may have to employ my boys and pay them to help me because Google is going to dock me for having broken images in my blog posts!

WHY does Google+ grab two of the same photos in the FIRST place? Really, I hate Google+. It was grabbing photos from my phone that I never wanted on there! They weren’t visible to the public, but they were online nevertheless.

So, I’ll be spending the weekend trying to fix every single blog post over the past year that I screwed up. If anyone has a violin, feel free to pull it out and play it for me as I cry over this spilt milk.

Friday, July 4, 2014

Being a Proverbs 31 Woman Verses 18-20

Yes, it's been two weeks since I wrote a blog post. We went to my mom's to dog sit and my other computer died. I have a program on THAT computer which I use to write my blog posts. So, I've just been sitting here wondering what to do because I just don't care for writing my blog posts inside of Blogger. Well, I have given up on that for the time being because all I do is keep pushing off writing and I've gotten behind.

Now to catch up I'll be combining a few verses to get back on track...fingers crossed.

We left off at verse 17 where the Proverbs 31 woman is energetic and a hard worker. Moving on to verse 18 we learn that she's profitable and her lamp doesn't go out. For me, what I take away from this verse is that whether she's buying or selling something she makes wise choices. Let's think of this in practical terms, in how we can do that in this day and age.

Do you use coupons when you go shopping? Do you call around, do research, speak to others to make sure you're making a wise decision when you make a purchase? What if you're selling something, say your car. Do you put a little extra money in it to be detailed so that it's nice and shiny for anyone who comes to see it? We each have our own strengths and ways we can make sure we're profitable in our dealings.

The next part of that verse, "her lamp does not go out at night" could mean a couple of things. She could be a night owl like me! Of course, her "night owl" and my "night owl" are probably two very different things. She's probably planning her next day, making sure everything is in order. I'm usually just hanging out, finishing up work that I didn't get done through my day, and doing a bit of channel surfing. The other part could be how it relates to her faith. The light that shines bright inside of her doesn't ever go out. Can you imagine what your daily life would be like if that light NEVER went out? Doesn't it just sound so beautiful? That's definitely what I want and the woman I want to be!

For our next verse, verse 19, I'm using the New Living Translation because the NIV, along with many other versions refer to the "distaff" and I was like, "what the heck is a distaff?" Turns out it's a stick or a spindle, two things I never use.

What do we do with our hands? How do we keep busy? Back in the day, they were the first Susie Homemaker, I'd say. That was the work of the day. What is OUR work of the day? Whether it's being a stay at home mom/wife, a mom/wife who works from home, or a mom/wife who works outside the home, how do we keep busy? I think we should be a good example to those around us of how we keep ourselves busy.

As we move on to verse 20, we see that the Proverbs 31 woman keeps and eye out for those who are in need and reaches out to them.

There are so many opportunities for us to reach out to those we know and don't know who are in need. And we should keep in mind, that "needy" people aren't always needing financial assistance. Is there a new mom who could use a break for an hour or a meal made? Do you know a woman who is starting a new career and could use ideas on picking out new clothing or someone to talk to as they make the transition? Is there a mom who is struggling with one of her children? Can you share your experience with her in how you've raised your kids?

Yes, there are times where we need to consider those who are actually poor. When you're out grocery shopping next time, maybe get a bag or two of groceries that are non-perishable to have on hand in case a need comes up. Have resources available if you find out someone needs assistance in ways you can't give: energy assistance, county assistance, food assistance, etc. Being able to help others help themselves is a wonderful gift. Keep your ears to the ground and aware of what's going on around you. It's a great way to find opportunities to be Christ's hands and feet to others!

Inside and outside of your home, how are you being an example to others and how are you reaching out?

The Disappearing Blogger

How in the world did two more weeks go by with no blogging?

Well, two weeks ago we headed over to my mom's and my PC died. That's the one I do my blogging on. The one that has all of my photos and blogging program. I had my work computer, but it's a Mac and I don't have a blogging program on it that works with the Blogger platform. So, I have been stuck.

Blogging inside of Blogger doesn't give a lot of options when it comes to the photos. They're either too small or too large. You can't edit them at all inside here. Blah! So then I realized I could blog on my son's computer and thought I'd do that.

Well, the day I went to blog, my header on my blog was gone! All of my tabs, the social buttons, the design...all gone. =( I wasn't sure what I was going to be able to do with it. I was afraid I was going to have to have someone design a new header and everything that was missing.

Thankfully, my blog designer, who isn't doing blog design any more, came in and saved the day and brought everything back! Whew!! Such a relief. I'm back in business now and will continue with my Psalm 91 Woman series. I'll be grouping some verses together since I'm so far behind!

I've also got a couple of general blog posts coming up. It's been a crazy time around the house with the boys home for the summer! Happy to be back!

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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.