Wednesday, August 10, 2011

soccer, teeth-brushing...a day in the life...

Nothing big going on right now!  We have truly had a restful July- extremely HOT...but we've been able to stick around the house and just enjoy being at home!  We recently visited my grandparents and I had an aunt ask me what all I had been up to- and I could honestly tell her not much besides being a mom!!  I loved that answer!  I'm so glad that the good Lord has given me the opportunity to be at home with my sweet boys (and soon to be little girl) and be available to play and love on them all day!  I wouldn't trade this time for a single thing!

This summer I've been able to watch Miles grow and develop his communication skills- he'll be turning four soon and all of the developmental changes are just amazing to me!  No one has had to "teach" him how to sigh with his shoulders hung down (which is my favorite expression of his right now...shame on me  =) or teach him how to find humor in situations- one of his favorite phrases is "that's so silly, mommy!"- and his emphasis on certain syllables is what really gets me!  He loves gameshows right now- I think it's the clapping and excitement that gets him (i.e. Wheel of Fortune, that show with Cedric the Entertainer, etc).  Although there have been times of frustration over his behavior and feeling like he's reverting back to toddler ways (from being around little brother- like dumping toys out and the excessive whining), times where I see his growth make it all worth it!  And, knowing that soon, he'll be surrounded by other children his age 3 days a week and probably picking up on habits I won't be fond of that typical 3 and 4 year olds have!

Last week, we got him all signed up for soccer.   He'll be playing at a local church that's right up the road from us, so that will make practice and games convenient!  Jared is beside himself excited  =)  We already have shinguards and shoes (which of course, there's a story there...Jared doesn't believe in putting the child in a stroller Owen got lost in the shoe store, Jared stood guard at the front doors and sent Miles hollering for him throughout the store.  Owen was in the shoe stock room.  I was hosting bunko at our house that night- didn't hear this story til the next day.)  Then there was registering for soccer...I couldn't simply mail the form in...=)  So I loaded the boys up (to drive 2 miles up the road with no other errands planned for the day).  As I was putting shoes on, Miles insisted  that he wear his cleats.  Well apparently I need a lesson in simply tying shoelaces on cleats.  Luckily, Jared had already shown Miles how to do this, so he was able to coach me through...wrap the extremely-too-long laces around the shoe, then make sure the loops are under the tongue.  Glad I learned this early on in life.

Owen is at SUCH a fun age right now!  Of course, he thinks he is as big as his big brother, and able to do EVERYTHING Miles can:  jump on (and off) the bed, brush his teeth, hold the top of the banister going up the stairs, etc.  This morning, I was in the kitchen doing dishes and the boys were left to their own devices made it back to our bathroom (I did shut the door, so that means Miles someone opened the door for them!) When I realized where they were, I immediately thought "great- Owen is playing in the toilet or the bathtub" (both favorite pasttimes).  But no...this time, Miles was jumping on the bed (which he isn't supposed to do without me in the room) and Owen had climbed up onto the bathtub (our tub is connected with a little shelf area to our vanities) and was brushing his teeth...with Jared's toothbrush.  I posted a video of this on facebook- you can check it out- he was so proud of himself!!  (it's on my phone and I let Jared do all the techy stuff, so I haven't figured out how to get it from my phone to the computer!)  He was QUITE upset when I took it from him!!

Nothing new with baby girl right now!!!  I told my doctor yesterday that I was a little concerned over how big I seem to be getting this early on, and he told me that she was just sitting forward, so to tell anyone who comments on this to shut-up!  Gotta love him!!!  I have decided how I want her nursery to look- here's my inspiration room:  (have you BEEN on pinterest?!  it's so addicting!)  Now it's just getting there...but she does have a few more items in her wardrobe!  And some sweet sweet friends are hosting a shower at the end of the month!  The sweet girl won't be naked- that's for sure!  And her Meme has already said that any blue jeans bought for her will disappear until she's at least ten!!  Ha ha!!  ((I remember telling Jared once before we were parents that we may  have to eat pbj's every night of the week, but our kids will be dressed cute- not too hard with the boys (especially when you have friends with kids exactly a year older than your oldest!) and sweet grandparents who make sure they have special occasion outfits!  But watching my mom buy clothes for Molly Claire this early on has been priceless!))

Sorry there are no pics...I've been good about taking them...on my phone...(see previous statement as to why they aren't on computer!!!)  I'll have to get Jared to help me out with that!!

Saturday, July 16, 2011

A Long Way to Go....

I was just doing some "blog-stalking" and read where one of them has been blogging for about 3 years- same as I have- and has over 200 posts...

I've got a long way to go...

Lately- my reasoning for not sitting down is that when I do sit down here at the computer- I'm gaining inspiration for all of my latest home projects...reading nook for the boys, laundry room make-over of sorts, new organization projects, nursery ideas, sewing projects...then I have to actually GET UP and do them!  I'm in the process of getting some things done, so that's good!!  Right now, Miss Molly Claire's (yes, that is baby girl's name!) nursery is a D.I.S.A.S.T.E.R. area and has yellow tape crossing the doors to prevent anyone from entering the scene except for me.  {okay, no tape- but Jared might appreciate it if there were}  I would take a picture and share it with you...but I really am rather embarrassed over the state of it right now!

Operation "Getting Ready for Baby Girl":
Step 1:  Name the baby girl.  Molly Claire is the name that we have chosen.  Jared still says he isn't for sure on it, but I figure if I keep going ahead with it and get things monogrammed he can't change his mind- right?  He says she has to be brunette to have the name "Molly"- he's so particular.  So, baby girl- you better come out dark-headed (and with hair like Owen pretty please so I can put a bow in it!)- because if not, you may be coming home nameless for a few days!
Yes, we will call her both names- "Molly Claire"
No, much to Miles' dismay, her name will not be "Jingle Wheeze (Jean Louise) Molly Pla-her"
No, there is no family significance to either name.  And even if there is a distant cousin twice removed I think I would rather not know at this point.  Jared and I purposely did not name her after anyone in either of our families simply to avoid hurting any feelings!  Maybe it's my overly-hormonal sensitive self, but both of the boys have family names and I absolutely love their names.  What if we don't have another girl and we used one side of the family's name and not the other's?  I don't think I could live with the life-long grief (self-imposed, of course).  And it would annoy me to no end.  Is this sweet little girl the last for the Darby clan?  I don't know, but I also know you can't predetermine gender of your future children!  (I read a most well-written article recently on mothering- it's here if you're interested)

Okay- off my soap box on that one...moving on...

Step 2:  The guest bed has been taken down, so if you were planning on coming for a visit, plan on sleeping on an air mattress!  And it will probably be taken upstairs {see beginning of post for this reasoning}

Yes...that's only two steps...

Step 3 I'm sure will involve actually purchasing some clothes for this child!!!  It would not behoove me to dress my little GIRL in blue sleepers with dinosaurs.  I have gathered all the boys' clothes that I'm ready to get rid of (taking out precious keepsakes, of course) and am ready to pass on, consign, etc...  I looked up information on a local consignment show and it completely overwhelmed me.  So I passed on that one.  It's a pretty big one, though, so maybe others aren't so intense??

In other news......

Soccer is almost back in full swing- summer training right now, regular season starts up in about a month.  So we've been glad to have Jared around the past couple weeks!  I tell you what...I'm learning some things about parents, folks.  I pray I never become an awful "sports parent" no matter what my kids are involved in.  Seriously.  It's ridiculous.  Lord, spare me the drama.  The junk Jared had to put up with the months of May and June was beyond ridiculous.


Miles starts preschool in just a short month!!  I'm beyond excited about this for him!!!!  We got his supply list and welcome letter in the mail a couple weeks ago, and while I started making plans, Jared got a little weepy-eyed!!  Go figure!!  He is constantly impressing us with his vocabulary and spelling skills.  I'm not going to be able to spell things out much longer with him.  One of his favorite things to do right now while I'm cooking dinner or in the kitchen is to pull a chair up to the bar and stand there and talk my ear off- about anything and everything.  Some days, I can tell he is making up stories.  Others, he is talking to me about his friends or about what he and daddy will do when daddy gets home.  I love this precious time.  I know there will be days in the future that I'm dragging information out of him.  I hope he does know he can always come to me to talk, though, and that I'll always be approachable to him!

Our little explorer at the Butterfly Palace in Branson.

Yes, he is usually this happy!
Owen is into EVERYTHING.  I was with some friends recently- both who have one little boy each (and are ready for more children).  Owen was banging coasters on a coffee table.  One friend (hostess) said- oh I haven't child-proofed- we decided we would just train (child's name) not to mess with stuff.  Oh honey- I did the same with Miles.  That first child was so trainable!  The second one...ooooo-eeeee.  He's been a horse of a different color!!!  My sweet little mama's boy will hold his hand out for me to spank it as he is messing with whatever in the other hand!!  And he's so darn cute!  He is cutting about 7 teeth right now-- yes-- 7.  My usually happy-go-lucky-as-long-as-you-let-me-do-what-I-want baby boy is 17 months and has had 6 teeth up until about 2 weeks ago.  Then decided to cut all these teeth at the same time!!  I have to admit, I have babied him so much, so looking at him with all these teeth is almost sad for me!  He has been easy to baby!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Updates on Life! girl has no name yet...

With Miles and Owen- we just knew.  Their names fit.  We didn't really have any complications with them!  Sweet little girl though...and we can't think of anything really that we are just crazy about!  I know it will come...but a good friend told me of someone she knew who actually was allowed to bring their baby home from the hospital without a name!  I can't imagine!  I'm a lover of all things monogrammed- especially on little girls, and especially little bloomer diaper covers!

So I'm certain she will have a name...soon.

I've even tried to pass the task off to Miles, hoping that whatever he says will stick...but apparently Miles has learned Arabic somewhere in his daily living of life...and speaks in it when I ask him questions throughout the day.  (at the end of saying the know that sweet little one "God our Father, God our Father, once again, once again"...well at the end, instead of saying "A-men" {long a}, he says "allah-men, allah-men". I had never thought anything of it until my dad said something after the blessing and snickering at our Father's day dinner!)

Speaking of Father's day--- how did you celebrate??  I wish, oh I wish, I had been better about taking pics that day!  Oh was our end of VBS program, Miles had an ultimate throwdown at church because he wasn't getting to go to VBS that day, Jared's stepmom went to hospital because of a stroke (she's doing much better and is home now, thankfully)...hmmm...and I don't exactly know where my camera is right now. But we still managed to have a good meal that evening- a man's meal-- wings, chips, beans...and we got to celebrate with my dad and Jared's stepdad- so it really did end up being a good day!  For gifts, each dad (including Jared) got a tape measure (cause what dad doesn't like a tape measure??) that had a tag on it:  "You really measure up!"  I thought it was cute!!!  Jared also got an apple TV- anyone else out there have one of those???  He hasn't shown me everything it can do yet- so I'm still waiting to be impressed!  HA!  We had a lovely date night Saturday night- complete with BBQ and ice cream!!  What could be better??

And we get to have another one this weekend!!  Our anniversary is Saturday- 6 blissful years!  We are celebrating on Friday night- headed to the B&B we went to on our wedding night!  I can't wait to just spend some "us" time together!  Life has slowed down this week from the craziness of soccer tryouts (I won't get started on that...and parents who think their kids are allstars...remind me of this when my kids are really)  but we are in desperate need of some time away from the house- even if it is just a little ways down the road!

This is the best pic that has both of us smiling in it that I have saved on the computer!

  It's amazing to think about all of the major life changes that have happened in the last 10 years!  Lord-willing- I pray that these ten years have seen the most changes that I will see in life!  Think about it- everyone goes through these:
living at home- under mom and dad's rules, cheering at football games, dreaming about what is to come over the next few years, then graduate from high school, go to college (in my case- move off, go to school with NO ONE you know) live with complete strangers who will become some of your dearest friends in life- no matter what, fall in love (in my case- with a blast from the past), make life-altering decisions (because let's face it- to get married or not to get married is a life-altering decision no matter who you are!  of course mine was a no-brainer!), graduate from college, get married, move away from mom and dad ("leave and cleave"- which I feel like we did really well!), become completely dependent on your polar opposite (paula abdul comes to mind), get a real job- that actually gets a paycheck and deposits money into a retirement account ("i thought I was only 22??"), buy our first house, decide that it's time for a baby (whaaaat??), move back home (literally for us- moved in with my parents for a year while waiting for our house in AL to sell), start a competitive soccer club (who knew?), buy our second home, decide it's time for a second baby, live life...oops-- we're pregnant again?! (Yes, Jared's boss told him he needed a hobby).

I mean...I'm seriously hoping that the next ten years aren't filled with that much change!  Don't get me wrong--- there's nothing I would change!  It all lead to this point in life!  And I love it!  But...I'm ready for some rhythm.  

family pic from last fall

Anyone with me??

**sorry for lack of pics on this one-- like I mentioned-- don't exactly know where the camera is--and I'm not too tech-savvy just yet on my Iphone.   I know it's easy-- just not there yet!

Some Summer Inspiration...

I have gotten back on a "blog-hopping" kick...found all sorts of inspiration for some much-needed help around this house in updating some decor and just finishing up some rooms and spots throughout the house!  I'm making myself a hopefully that will help keep me on track!!  Here are some different blogs where I've gotten my "inspiration"!!  ((((and I'm loving the John Wayne saying she has posted on the mother in law is a HUGE fan of the Duke and has passed that love on to my 3 year old- I mean seriously- what kid wants to sit and watch old cowboy movies in black and white???  I'm NOT 3 and can hardly handle it!  I'm thinking I'm going to have to do something with that saying for our "man room"!))))

and that's just to get you started....they have all sorts of links to a bajillion other're welcome...


If you're a foodie...I've come across a few new-to-me blogs---

I like the Sunday Baker because she has two growing boys whom she is trying to keep fed with HEALTHY foods!!!  I'm constantly racking my brain on new ways to keep Miles from only having PBJ and trail mix (which I do keep pretty healthy)!   In are a few things I've recently tried to incorporate...besides chicken nuggets =)

Grilled PB and Apples:
wheat bread (this is what I grew up eating...check the label to make sure the 1ST ingredient is whole wheat flour--- nothing enriched-  means it's been processed more)
little bit of butter and brown sugar

Now...something you may not know about moi is that I am allergic to fresh fruit.  Yes, that is a real thing.  My mom found it here.  Which TOTALLY sucks because I love fruit...all types (not crazy about peaches though...and yes, I know I'm from the South and should anyway...)  And I especially love banana pudding, but have found that even that can make my mouth itch like crazy!!  (No, I'm not going to die or anything if I have fruit like people who have, say, peanut allergies or anything, it's just terribly annoying!!)  So, while you don't have to do this first step, I do.  And I must say- I really like it this way because I'm a sucker for something sweet...

I sliced up my apple, while my butter was melting, added some brown sugar to butter, and sauteed my apples for about 5 minutes, til they were tender.  Something about cooking them gets rid of whatever I'm allergic to.

Then I slather PB onto both sides of the bread, put the apples on the PB, sprinkle cinnamon, and put back in pan I sauteed apples in.  It soaks up the leftover brown sugar and butter and is DELISH!  And sorta healthy! Peanut butter, apples, wheat bread...yep- I'm thinking that covers a couple food groups anyway!  And simple enough for a quick lunch!  

English Muffin Pizzas
english muffins (duh) (and like I said before- we're using all whole wheat breads)
leftover spaghetti sauce (or you can open a new jar  =)
cheese (whatever you have)

I personally like to toast my english muffins in toaster first, but you can broil them in oven/toaster oven if you prefer.  Then spoon sauce on, sprinkle cheese, put under the broiler for a few minutes- and BAM you're done.  And this is sooo easy for little hands to help with!  

Few other things I've got on hand--
Homemade Mac and Cheese (really trying to stay away from the blue box that features toy story characters!), garden fresh tomatoes (when I can bum them off of someone-- same goes for any other type of veggies and fruit!), edamame (I think Miles likes to eat this just because it's fun to say...I like to get the already shelled {because you get a LOT more than the shelled} in the steamable bag- do it according to directions, then put on a cookie sheet, drizzle with olive oil, sea salt, and cracked pepper- bake those suckers on 375 for about 20 minutes {stir after 10 minutes)- DELISH)

.......anything you want to add to the mix here?!?!  Please share!!  

Now...while I semi-harped on eating's a treat for ya...have you seen this blog??  I came across it looking for free fonts (which are fantastic), but her blog is soooo much fun to read...check out these- anything that combines brownies, oreos, and chocolate chips-'ve got my attention!!  Check the recipe out here.

NOW---- go get to getting inspired!!!  

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Friend's Adoption

If you'll remember back a few months ago, I posted about adoption and what it means to me.  I encouraged any readers who are adopted, who are adopting, etc, to share their story!  There is a family at our church who is leaving TOMORROW headed to China to pick up their sweet little boy, Paxton!  Our church family can't wait to greet them home in just a couple weeks with their newest addition!  Bethany shared a little of their story with me:

God planted the seed of adoption in our hearts during the summer of 2008 after Stephen Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman lost their little girl.  We also lost our first child, since then I have had a heavy heart for others who experience such a great loss.  I began reading the Chapman’s blog almost daily and was touched by his love for orphans.  Craig and I began discussing the possibility of adopting and knew it was something we would like to do. 
Craig and I discussed adoption several times over the next two years, but we never felt the time was just right.  At the beginning of February 2010, adoption became a regular conversation between Craig and me.  Craig said, “If God is calling us to adopt, he is going to have to almost speak out loud to me.”  Well, God almost did…..  Our son was going to be baptized on February 28, this is also the day we lost our first son, Noah. We went to church that Sunday morning with heavy hearts.  We were so excited to have our son baptized, but we still mourned the loss of our little Noah.  After Hayden’s baptism, we opened the church bulletin.  Inside the bulletin was a flyer advertising an adoption meeting at a local church for anyone interested in domestic or international adoption.  We both looked at each other with tears in our eyes, and we KNEW it was time.  God could have chosen any day for the flyer to be in the bulletin, but He chose February 28. 
People ask, “Why China? Why not America?”  God placed China on our hearts, we have no explanation.  God revealed to us without question we were to adopt from China.  That is another exciting story.
          I questioned whether I could love another child as much as I love the three I gave birth to.  God showed me I can!  I have had doubts if we would have the money we needed throughout the adoption.  God has provided! God has shown Craig and I so much through this process, and we both have shed many tears of excitement, frustration, and JOY!  This journey has been beautiful on so many levels.  I thank God that he chose US to adopt one of his precious children, what an incredible blessing!   

 So will you join with me in praying for the Mathis family as they travel tomorrow to bring Paxton to his forever family?  Pray that the Lord will make his little spirit adaptable to all the changes he will be going through just in the next two weeks as they travel with him throughout the country and home to the US, as he has never left the orphanage he lives in!  

Friday, May 27, 2011

It's a.......


That's right folks!!!  Some of you may have already read our exciting news on Facebook!  We're so excited!  Jared (excuse me....Dr. Darby...they conferred an honorary doctorate on him with Owen apparently) could tell immediately on the ultrasound screen- he said "there's nothing there!"  

So not only are we looking forward to bows and all things smocked, appliqued, and PINK, I am so looking forward to seeing the change of the dynamic in our home.  Jared has coached girls for the past several years, and I've loved hearing/watching his interaction with them.  So I had made it a personal life goal to see him as a girl-dad!  He's such a good dad with the boys and definitely is that good balance they need from us.  He is very often the calm in the midst of my storm (and vice-versa- which is rare, though), while I am the cuddler and boo-boo kisser when he's the rough and tumble, get-up and deal-with-your-stubbed-toe, wrestling dad.  

Needless to say, there will once again be a fruit-basket turnover in our home over the summer as we prepare for our new addition (which there would be no matter the gender of this baby!)  One of my first comments to Jared was "you know you're going to have to move that furniture in the guest room again, right?"  I don't think he read the fine print on our marriage certificate...

"furniture mover, (and in our case) sole "packer-upper" when you move because your new wife is 
absolutely no good at it and is very easily distracted by old cards, pictures, and notes"

Other changes on the homefront will be every SUV-loving, always-have-driven-one's fear...

That's right folks...Jared we think it's best that with three kiddos the minivan is going to be the best way to go.  I'm too short for any type of suburban and putting a baby carrier in and out...others are a little too far out of our price range, even used (especially with me being a SAHM full-time now!).  He texted me a little while ago, in fact, saying we should go look this here we go.  Can you sense the joy?!  =)  

Other exciting news at the Darby household...Clif's getting married to Lauren next weekend!!!!!  We'll be on our way to AR next week to celebrate all the wedding festivities!  And in very non-typical Lindsey Grace form, I am already planning and making my list of what to pack!  I even plan to IRON everything we will need for the trip over the weekend!  Now, that's excitement folks!    

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Dentist Saga {part 2}

(forgive the music...just turn your speakers off...I looked for "the dentist song" from little shop of horrors, but it wasn't on playlist!  Or I guess I'll just turn it about that??  =)

So...just a short six months ago, I blogged about our first dentist experience with our firstborn and the terror of a nightmare that it was.

Well, today, six months later, was no better.  I tried a different approach this time.  After talking with a friend last week about it, I decided I wouldn't bring it up with him.  Maybe last time there was too much talk about it beforehand and it lead to the breakdown.  So instead, I told the boys this morning we had some errands to run- one of those things was getting haircuts (which is generally a pleasant experience).  I didn't mention the dentist {avoiding the truth} which is where we were headed first after we dropped Owen off.  He was a champ last time, but let's face it, he was about nine months old then and a lot more content in his stroller than he is now!  So no questions asked really when Meme came and got Owen- I told Miles I had a special errand for us to run (okay so that was lie #1, I guess).

So we pulled up.  Our dentist is in the same building as the pediatrician we use and the place I used to get my haircut.  Well, I couldn't avoid it anymore.  He asked and as I was taking him out I told him we were at the dentist.  {cue the protesting}  I carried him out of the car to the sidewalk, then told him he had to walk like a big boy in there.  {mistake #1 for mom}  He ran away from me.  Now, if you haven't met Miles- you need to know he isn't the run-away type.  I've never had to chase after him unless we're playing or he's running after little brother and I've told him to stay put.  Now, Owen is the run-away type; Mr. Adventurer and never looks back!  So I get him inside and I go to sign us in- he heads for the door!  The lady sitting closest to the door just kinda chuckles (not helping, woman!)  I caught him in time, thankfully!  He found a book and a toy and was content...then they called us back.  I almost let him go back by himself, but he wasn't even getting up from his chair.  So we head back there and he gets the death grip on my neck.  Same song and dance as last time, so I won't re-hash all of that.  You can click here for that drama.  Of course the dentist tells me I need to continue brushing, keep bringing him even if he fusses, yadayadayada...I mean- I wouldn't do this if I didn't think it were necessary!  Come on!

Then I go to schedule the next appointment and realize that it will be in November.  And it really hit me...I'll have another kid then!  Ah!!

Stay tuned...we head to the doctor next Monday for an ultrasound!  Hopefully butterbean will cooperate and we'll be able to tell what he/she is!!!

Monday, May 9, 2011


My sincerest apologies for not keeping up....I'll tell you something- this 3rd pregnancy has been a booger!  I will spare you all of the details- but one thing I will tell you is that I have found myself beyond GRUMPY!  My attitude has been negative and when I have a free moment, I want to sit down and watch TV and get lost in whatever's going on in people's fictional lives!  AH!  Now, I enjoy watching TV- I always have- but I've never been a TV junkie like I have the past several weeks!  Let's just say-- I'm glad the month of April is over and I'm on into my 2nd trimester!  {{{cue the music}}}

I'm in my 16th week of pregnancy and we will be finding out in two weeks what Darby #3 is!  I don't have my hopes up either way- I'm planning for both (ways that is...not one of each  =)  I have lots of cute ideas for 3 boys and getting rooms geared towards that way, but if it's a girl- I don't quite have the room situation figured out yet, but know that it will come!  Owen will not be ready for a big boy bed yet, although, I'm pretty sure by fall, he will have already figured out how to escape from his crib.  He's quite the explorer...and a little walking tornado, as well!  {I should have taken a picture of the entryway before Miles and I cleaned it's impressive what little hands can do with 2 minutes when left unattended!}  So that means I will have 2 kids in

Here are a few pics to update you on life around here!!

Miles on Easter

Owen on Easter

My Melaleuca booth at Farmer's Market

Mother's Day craft- thank you I Can Teach My Child

presents for grandmothers!  *there was one more frame* *notice the difference in feet- ha!*

Jared and Dad were in charge of lunch- doesn't it look FAB!
(They picked it up from a wonderful catering place- but they did have to heat it  =P)

Miles isn't really into cooperating much these days...

Best we could get...don't you like the lovely bruise on my uncrossed legs???

So if you don't live in Memphis...this is the view coming across the bridge into TN from AR.
The mighty Mississip' is a-risin' on up!

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I'm Ba-aack!!

Sorry folks, for the blogging hiatus!

We had a bit of a situation back in February that caused me to go "WHOOOOAAAA- whaaaat?!"- but I'm good now!

baby darby #3 at 9 weeks 4 days, March 21

Yes, people- that is the situation!

Little Darby numero tres will be here in October- but this little mama found out on baby numero dos' first birthday.  I was a little shocked.  I mean- I don't need to go through the birds and bees here- I know where they come from and how they're made- and I'm very thankful of the Lord's reminding me through such gentle voices and Scripture that He knows the plans for my life- and that He indeed knows them better than I!!

But it was still a shocker...=)

I've also had other issues on my heart that I've started to blog about- but then decided to hold off on...but felt like I couldn't blog about anything else until I got that off my heart--- but then decided it can wait...and it also would target a different audience than who usually I've held off for a little while...still feeling that one out.

So back to the fam--

Owen's Lumberjack party went off wonderfully!  Here are a few pics from the day:

party favors- swiss cake rolls drizzled with chocolate to look like logs
"I spent a lot of time cutting down these logs for you!  Enjoy!"

sadly, this was the best shot we got of him all day in his cute little flannel shirt!  don't you love all the logs my sweet hubby and his dad went and chopped for me?!

needless to say, he enjoyed the cake!

So not much else to report for now...other than I will get back into a better blogging habit.  I want to- not for your sake- but for my family's sake.  And for mine.  I'm so bad about journaling and wish I did it more- I go through spurts of it.  So this is it.  I must do a better job!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Menu...take 3 this is working out okay!  

I forgot to post a couple other "corrections"...when we went to mooch spend quality time with my folks on Tuesday night, mom had already made the potato soup that I had posted for Friday night.  So Friday was date night anyway- so it was no big deal.  Then Saturday- I didn't really have leftovers, so we did chicken alfredo.  (Just the canned sauce...I have tried to no avail with homemade sauce and just wasn't feeling like Giada.) tonight we had Italian chicken (easy peasy--- chicken tenderloin cooked in Italian dressing on the stove top til cooked through- yummy), green beans, wild rice, and rolls.  AND Jared and I even got to enjoy a quiet candlelit dinner!  Both of the boys took late naps today because it was SOOOOO  beautiful here (and yes- it did snow 5 inches 5 days ago and it was 70 degrees today.)  So instead of waking them up for supper, we decided to let sleeping dogs lie and enjoy our dinner in the quiet.  We got sat down and Jared said "I feel like we should light some candles or something."  So I did...I is Valentine's day!!! 

{{{And I'll have you know...we both showed great self-control...I really DIDN'T feel like cooking tonight-- feeling rather sluggish here lately...and he was going to go to the dip (or here)...but we didn't...we figured the good Lord was trying to tell us something when we landed on tails 3 times in a row}}}

So Tuesday:  I'd love to get the grill out and do hamburgers because it is supposed to continue to be BEAUTIFUL all week--- but we might just have to settle for tacos...burgers means a trip to the store to get buns and stuff!  Trying really hard to stick with stuff I already have in the pantry!  

(speaking of pantries...have you ever seen this?!  Isn't it so cute??  Jared is wanting to take the doors off our pantry because a our house has settled, the doors dont' shut right...but who wants an open pantry?!  If mine could look like this- I would do it!) 

Wednesday: I checked out church menu--- no red beans and rice- but meatloaf!!  Not usually a meatloaf fan unless it's the recipe I use from my good friend Anna Katherine, but it's yummy- and Miles will probably eat it if he doesn't see the chicken nuggets first!!

Thursday:  for sure something in the crockpot...haven't decided exactly what yet- but I've got a few recipes in stock.

Friday: Bible study at church reading this- it's great-- I would seriously recommend it to any parent even if their kid is calm, cool, and collected!  Such great insight on human emotions of anger and frustration- and really speaks to parent's heart's first before telling you how to "fix" your kid!!  

Saturday: my little Lumberjack's birthday party!!  Fend for yourself until party time!!  

Hope you have a great week!!  What's cooking at your house this week?!

Do this to your bacon...

Well...I was off to a good start!

{{{keep scrolling if you want the bacon part}}}

Except my poppyseed chicken that I said I was going to make turned into chicken and noodles.  (fantastic)

Easy Creamy Chicken and Noodles
(sorry for the approximate measurements...that's just how I roll cook)

egg noodles (i use about half a bag)
chicken stock to boil noodles in (or do water and about 2 Tbsp chicken bullion cubes) (about 3 cups)
2 big cooked chicken breasts, diced or shredded
1 can cream of mushroom
1 cup milk
1 can mixed veggies (or you can do frozen, just add them in time for them to cook.  the canned you don't have to wait to thaw and cook, just warm)
cheese (if you want it- I added it, but would have been fine without it)

Boil noodles in chicken stock.  Drain.  Add chicken, cream of chicken, milk, veggies, cheese. Mix all together and let it sit until milk and cream of mushroom evaporate into noodles.  I let mine sit for about 20 minutes on low heat.

I loved that this was sooooo easy and delicious!  Now...part of it was that my cooked chicken breast was cooked good--- I had it in the freezer from when i had cooked several breasts in the crockpot a couple weeks back.  I cooked it in some broth, water, s/p, and a little garlic and onion.  I had let the chicken thaw all day, so it was ready to add into the creamy chicken and noodles.


the snow came.

Okay- if you read my blog and you're not from around these Southern parts...snow shuts us down for days.  Half and inch or 3 feet...seriously folks.  My mother-in-law said this one was a "2 loafer" (she heard it on the weather channel) {and if you need further explanation like I means 2 loafs of bread}

So of course church was cancelled...meaning I didn't get my yummy red beans and rice this week!!  Hopefully we'll have it next week!  So once I left the schoolhouse (knowing we weren't going anywhere for 2 days) I did what every good Southern woman does...I went to the Kroger(s) for toilet paper and milk.  {we seriously did need both}  And it seriously snowed while I was in there!!!  I also made the decision while in there to pick up some bacon, eggs,  and orange juice--- we were having breakfast for dinner at the Darby's.

So.  Wednesday night we had pancakes, bacon, and eggs.  Let me give you a few helpful tips and hints...

1.)  pancakes- use Pioneer baking mix.  I use it for my biscuits and pancakes and LOVE it!!  There have been times I haven't gotten the pancakes just right...and I've tried a little bit of everything.

2.) Do this to your bacon:  mix about a 1/2 Tbsp. each mustard and honey, and about 1/2 c brown sugar in a plastic bag.  Put your bacon in there to coat it.  Place it on a wire cooling rack, then onto a cookie sheet (lined with parchment or foil for easier clean up).  Put in 400 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes---- DELISH!  Even the burnt parts are delicious because they're drizzled with honey!!  

Okay--- the rest of the week went as planned (except that darn roast...but now I can't even think of what we did instead!) Our date night at church was cancelled because of the snow, but Meme and Jimbo came through for us!  So we house-swapped!  They came down and kept the boys while we ordered a pizza and got a movie at the Redbox and went back to their house to watch it in the quiet!!  So nice!  

Next post will be this week's menu!  

Thursday, February 10, 2011

music confession

I've got an appreciation for ALL types of music...except for anything that involves the lead "singer" screaming into the microphone throughout the entire song, or music that is labeled "Christian" but is screaming...can't handle that...{{yes, that was a shot Clif}}


Have you used pandora?  I mean...I know that it's been around for a while- but I've recently started using it on our home computer.  I'm not really a CD person--- I'd rather have a variety playing- so I'm big on listening to the radio.  So that being said...go ahead and go to - and plug in "wilson phillips".  Thank me later.

We're talking old school Madonna, Bryan Adams, Tiffany (yes that's right...I said Tiffany).  Now I'm not really a child of the 80s...I was born in the early 80s, but I don't have older brothers or sisters, so I would call myself more of a child of the 90s I guess.  But I can appreciate some good late 80s, early 90s music.  Makes me wish they still did the mall tours I used to see about on I love the 80s and I love the 90s (once I was older of course, because I wasn't allowed to watch VH1 or MTV...and with good reason, mom =)

So this is what I decided to blog about today...instead of doing the dishes while listening to wilson phillips radio on pandora.

Snow pictures coming soon.  We got a good 5 inches yesterday...and so much of it is almost melted!!  Boo!!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

so this is what my hubby does....

He looks at screens like this all day to tell me what the weather's going to be like...he's for real ya'll.  And no...his day job is not with the National Weather Service...he's a city planner...go put all those connections together!!!!  {{{love you babe}}}
photo credit

{{{oh...and if someone can give me a tutorial on how to capture screen images-- i think that would have made this post even better...I tried to google it and that brought up even more "nerd-dom" to my computer}}} =P

Monday, February 7, 2011

menu for the week...2nd edition =)

Okay---so last week worked!

YAY for me!!!

Thursday was especially hard..........Jared was set to have a meeting...I wanted so badly NOT to cook...but I did it anyway!!!  So the whole week worked out!  YAY!

Well...except Friday I didn't do roast...I did the sandwiches because we decided to spend the night at the mall (which we have not done in FOR-EV-UH--- in fact...we may or may NOT have gotten lost going out there b/c it was raining and we haven't been on the interstate in forever....hmmm....)  So Saturday we just ate leftovers for lunch and then headed out that evening for bowling at Mexican (fajitas there were MUCH better than my sorry attempt on Monday!!)

So here's the game plan for this week...

tonight:  hmmm...I have cooked, shredded chicken breast in the fridge thawing...I'm thinking I'll do poppyseed chicken and some veggies...probably better hurry up and decide, huh?!  Hubby will be home in about an hour---and I still have to get dressed!  AH!!!  But it has been a great pajama/snow day!!
(oh--- and earlier today for lunch- me and Miles made our own pizzas!  fun---he didn't like his-- it didn't taste like the "real" thing!  oh well-- I ate mine up!)

Tuesday- hubs has a city meeting- and those last FOREVER so we will either do a veggie plate or might wait around at Meme's house and see what they're having for supper!!  hee hee!

Wednesday- church supper (and we're having the BEST red beans and rice and bread pudding you've ever put in your mouth...we have SUCH good chefs for our Wednesday night suppers!!)

Thursday- I WILL cook that roast this week!!!

Friday- potato soup- see this post for recipe (or I have a chicken chili recipe we might do...)

Saturday- probably leftovers/"fend for yourself"  =)

okay-- well there aren't too many all out meals I have to cook up this I might throw in another one along the way---especially for Saturday...but lots to do between now and then!  Planning for little boy's 1st birthday celebration (think lumberjack), helping throw a shower for a dear friend (think little cowboy), attending a wedding shower, and lots of birthday presents!!  Gotta get that sewing machine going, folks!

What am I doing on here?!?!?

Hope you have a GREAT week!!!!  What's cooking at your house this week?!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

simply amazed

Some of you may read Kelly's blog.  Well tonight I was doing my weekly "blog-walk" and came across hers...again...which I could probably read and find all sorts of links from...but anyway!  I saw where just a couple days after I had posted my blog on my heart for adoption, she posted hers as well!  Of course she has well over 9,000 readers...and I probably have 20!!  But I loved reading how our great God is moving in the hearts of so many families across our nation to adopt and fulfill that commandment!  I truly believe that once our small place in history is complete, we will be able to look back and see where God was raising an army of God-fearing men and women to proclaim His gospel to the ends of the Earth.  What a joyous thought!

I have a friend getting her story together for me, so again- if you have yours that you want to share- I'd love to be your outlet or your link to the blog world!

menu for the week

Okay--- so far so good-- I've stayed on track with our meals so I'll let you in on what we're having at the Darby's!!

Sunday night- we went to McAlisters- we go to church on Sunday nights at 6, so it's really too early to eat before, but too late to eat anything decent once we get home, so McAlisters it was!  And I didn't mind--- but that sweet tea kept me up until the wee hours of the night!!

Monday- beef fajitas, spanish rice, corn, and black beans- tried a recipe I found on allrecipes- they were pretty good- would have been better if I had bought a better cut of meat!  And I love black beans- throw a little bit of lime juice and cilantro on them- yum!!

Tuesday (tonight)- crock pot chicken and dumplings- haven't tried this recipe before, but found it on a community forum on babycenter

chicken breasts (i had 2 huge ones)
2 cans cream of chicken (didn't have time to make my own this morning)
1 cup chicken broth
about 1 Tbsp Italian seasoning (more or less to taste)
refrigerator biscuits

Put chicken, soups, broth, and seasonings into crock pot.  Cook all day (6 hrs or so) on high.  Shred chicken.  (I just did this with forks right there in the pot).  Cut biscuits (or tear =) into bite-size pieces (I used 4 grands homestyle buttermilk- not flaky- that's what was on sale for 99cents--- and they weren't close to being expired- go figure!  should have stocked up- but I have been using "mary's" frozen biscuits- they are so good.  Or if I have time to make my own I use Pioneer's baking mix- they are soooo good- and I like them better than using bisquik! okay- off of my biscuit tangent...)  Leave this to cook in crockpot for 2 more hours on high.

Tasted good when I was tearing up the biscuits!  We'll have carrots and peas with this!  I'll let you know how it is!

{{{it was delicious!!  owen ate it right up!  and i think if miles had been a little more compliant, he would have loved it!  a little salty, so i won't add as much salt next time and will probably make my own broth and/or cream of chicken.  and i'll DEFINITELY add more than 4 grands biscuits!  =)}}}

Wednesday- church meal

Thursday- hmmm....I'm thinking we'll be having spaghetti- quick "go-to" meal!  I'm usually done by Thursday!

Friday- maybe a roast- I have one in the freezer I need to pull out!

Saturday- ham and swiss sandwiches on Hawaiian rolls and maybe potato salad??  We'll either have this for lunch or supper- depending on how our day goes!

Sunday- usually our out-to-eat day b/c Jared has soccer on Sunday afternoons, so he doesn't have time to come home from church then head back out for soccer!

So there it is folks!  I'll let you know how my meal planning went at the end of the week!  Sounds like a fool-proof plan, right?!  I also decided yesterday once I got home from the grocery store that I'm not going to go back for at least 2 weeks- except for milk b/c Owen is on whole milk now- no way we can go without milk for 2 weeks- much less 2 days right now between him and Miles!!  I'm determined to use EVERYTHING I have in the pantry!!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Playdough Fun!

Thought I'd share this fun recipe I had for homemade playdough!  It's so great!  We gave it away as Christmas gifts for Miles' little friends this year!  (idea from How Does She- love that site!)

yes, it's almost lunch and we are all still in our pjs!!

I had everything at the house except cream of tartar.  But trust me, you're going to need this.  I looked up why you need cream of tartar, and all I could really find is that it makes it more elastic-y and smooth.  And that makes sense, because I found a recipe that didn't have it in there and it didn't work.  It was more like playing with bread dough- and super sticky!

So here it is:

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup of water
1/4 cup salt
2 tsp cream of tartar
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
4 drops of food coloring

Mix all ingredients over low heat, stirring constantly.  We stood there for about 5 minutes.  When it all formed together, I plopped it all in a ball and let it cool for about 10 minutes.  Then we kneaded it lots (partly because it was just fun!)  

When we gave it as gifts, we put some in leftover babyfood containers and small little plastic thingies that I had.  Then I made up some cute gifttags (or look up "free printables" and you'll find a PLETHORA of cute stuff out there!) and passed them out!  Miles' friends and our Sunday school kiddos got some as Christmas happies (we made green and red!)


 a few pictures from us making ours back at Christmas time!  
me and my happy little helper!  and i know you're jealous of how good i look here...=)

and the other one!!

our red playdough...beginning stages!
had enough time to go get a bath, then come back and play for a few minutes!
And it's funny...he has those same pjs on today!!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

adoption responses, part 1

Here are the first few responses I had back to yesterday's post! 

Keep 'em coming!!

A friend's hubby from church, Brian, replied back to me on FB:

"My parents adopted me from a children's home when I was about a month old, 
and it was the biggest blessing of my life, by far."

Then my fellow Bunko junkie and XO sister, Liz shared her family's journey to adoption here.

My friend Jessica  posted this link in the comments section.  I loved reading this blog!

So seriously folks!  Keep 'em coming!  I'll try to gather at least one story a week to share!  If you'd be interested in writing up your whole story in kind of a nutshell- I'd love to post it here!  

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

a piece of my heart

okay- if you've read my blog before- you know that once i talked about the desire i have to adopt.  this is not something the Lord is calling us to do at this present time...but it does not lessen the heaviness on my heart of wanting to care for those who don't have a mom and dad to call their own!  i have been sooooo unbelievably moved by so many people over just the last year who have chosen to go down this path.  and this thought of blogging about it has recurred so many times in my thoughts!  i have read complete stranger's blogs about their journey to adoption- but i would love to have a place where all the people in my world can read each other's stories and connect!

so here is what i am proposing...

i would love to share YOUR adoption story.  have you adopted?  are you in the middle of an adoption?    are you yourself adopted?  do you have any tips or websites or information you can share with someone who might be thinking about it, but doesn't know where to start?

leave me a comment or facebook msg me or email me- your story deserves to be heard {read}!  feel free to leave a link to your adoption blog if you have one!

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.
James 1:27
Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. 
Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.
Isaiah 1:17

photo credit

Get a PEN!

Here's a potato soup recipe you are for sure going to want to write down!

It's okay...I'll give you time to go get a recipe card, index card, post it...whatever!  

Or hey-- just right click, save, and print this out so you have it! 

Isn't picnik just great?!?!  I made the recipe card just doodling around one day, then saved it.  I came back to it and added the text in just now!   (((and I just realized I forgot to fill in what the recipe IS!!)))  

We had this one Sunday after church.  It was super quick- even with the frozen potatoes!  Also- I have to give myself a pat on the back...I have done a GREAT job the past week or so of meal planning!  I have ALMOST  posted our meal plan up each week...but I am doomed for failure if I do that!  

Okay...maybe that was a little dramatic... 

So how about I back-track and tell you what we've already had?!?!  This girl is great about posting her meals each week

{{{{---oh-- that I aspire to be...}}}}

Okay- so I won't do a daily run through- just some highlights. 

Last night we had chili- YUM.  It's "Wendy's Top Secret Recipe" that I'm pretty sure was in the newspaper and my MIL passed it on to me.  I personally haven't ever had Wendy's chili- so I don't know if it really tastes like it- but it is GUUU--UUD.  We were celebrating my FIL's bday- so we did that and baked potatoes and we splurged on cupcakes!  Andrea's are just too good to try to make my own!  I told Jared once that I'll try many things- but fancy baking and cake decorating probably won't ever be one of them!  

We had BBQ last week-- crockpot, seasoned rub, Corky's bbq sauce- divine.  My mom found it for me on Kitchen Daily but I can't seem to find the exact recipe to link it...leave me a comment if you want me to get it to you!  It was delish.

And of course we've had a chicken dish-- but this one I can't decide if I like or not.  It's the 2nd time I've made it and I don't think it has enough flavor for me.  But it's one of my cousin's favorites- and she has great taste buds (lol- yes at myself)  

4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (uncooked) 
-sliced mushrooms (8 oz square box or bag of fresh sliced; or, big jar of mushrooms....but i think the fresh r the best)
-swiss cheese
-1 can of cream of chicken soup
-1/2 cup of white wine (I may have added a tad bit more to make it a little more moist)
-pepperidge farm herb stuffing mix
-salt and pepper
*don't like mushrooms, so we omitted that*
*oh- and I made my own cream of chicken

And Owen is eating more and more...I kinda gave the babyfood-making a little hiatus.  He is getting lots more tub food than I thought I would do- but something had to give right now!  But he is eating so much of what we're eating and it's so easy to throw whatever into the mini food chopper and give that to him!  Plus he's eating lots of soft food- so that saves on lots of prep, too!  One of his favorites is chicken pot pie!  It's this girl's MIL's recipe I got from the church cookbook.  It is SOOOO stinking good and it makes up two pies, so I can either freeze it or take it to a friend!  (I took it to a neighbor last week- plus the best brownies you will ever put in your mouth!  I'll share that recipe later, too!)

Okay--- so chicken pot pie and brownies recipe- coming up with the next blog post!  Maybe I'll even get fancy and put them on those fancy recipe cards too!!  

So---what do YOU have cooking?!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

What a fun day!

Well folks....we got it...our once a year snow!  It came a little early- but it did not disappoint!  AND we have another snow forecasted for this coming weekend!!  Who knows?!  And folks...let me tell you--- this southern girl does NOT like to be cold...but I actually bundled up (and looked ridiculous because I have no need for real snow clothes- because seriously- this MIGHT happen once a year!)  I mean...I'm sitting here at the computer wearing my heavy coat and gloves.  A little more time consuming to type with the gloves on...but I am just COLD!

Our morning consisted of running up and down the huge hill beside our house- it's PERFECT for sledding!  And this year- instead of preparing for the inclement weather with oil lanterns- Jared got something we can really use--- SLEDS!  {{{love you honey}}}{{and yes- I know we've used the lanterns...once...}}

Little brother missed out on the first round, but he was up and ready for round two!  And Meme and Jimbo stopped by and brought another sled!  I was glad they came because I am terrible about taking pictures these days!  I don't want to miss out on any of the fun, so I'm right there in the middle of things and not concerned with picture taking!  All of my pics from Christmas this year are mostly from Mom's camera!  I have a few on mine...but if you read the last post you might understand why I didn't have the energy to take pics...


Lots and lots of here's a few pics to show you just how excited we get down here in the south over SNOW!