Sunday, December 27, 2009

New look & features

So you may have noticed I've done some remodeling here.  Getting a whole blog-lift for 2010!  Please note the links at the top of the page, which will take you to the different pages. I created different pages for each, instead of continuing to have everything show up on the home page and then tagging.  Hopefully this will make for a more pleasant read for everyone. 

Let me know how you like it, and if there's anything else I can add/delete/change that would improve Frugal Grace!

Friday, December 25, 2009

To you & yours

Wishing you a very blessed holiday!  
Remember to tell Jesus "Happy Birthday!"

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Healthy Peanut Butter Cups!

Reece's Peanut Butter cups are my son's favorite candy of all time, but I really hate buying them and having him eat all the junk they use in commercial candies.  (Yes, he's 18, but still my baby boy!)  

A friend sent me this wonderful, simple recipe this morning for homemade peanut butter squares.  I tweaked the instructions a bit for cups and will use organic sugar, peanut butter, real butter and dark chocolate chips (gotta have those antioxidants!):

1 box confectioner's sugar
1 softened stick of butter
1 12 oz. jar of peanut butter (creamy or crunchy)

1 bag semi-sweet chocolate chips

  • Knead confectioner's sugar, peanut butter, and butter together.
  • Put liners in mini-muffin cups.
  • Fill mini-muffin cups 1/2 full with peanut butter mixture. Press until firmly in bottom of each cup. 
  • Melt bag of chocolate chips in microwave.  Spoon chocolate over peanut butter mixture until just covered - or thicker for us chocoholics  ;) 
  • Refrigerate cups until set well, then invert pan to remove.  
  • Set upright on a platter for serving, or arrange in a tin with wax paper between layer for gift-giving.
Be sure to keep cool to prevent melting in containers.

Yummy & a little more healthy than store-bought!  :)

How to have a peaceful holiday: Wordless Wednesday

I just saw this link today on Dr Oz's Facebook Fan page.
(I loooove Dr. Oz!)

With the holidays upon us, here's one sure-fire way to keep unwelcome visitors away from your doorstep!


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Please let me know...

If you're able to watch this without getting goosebumps (or crying), please let me know.  I've heard this a million times, and it never fails to touch my heart.  I don't think anyone could do "O, Holy Night" better than Martina McBride except Jesus himself.

Sunday, December 20, 2009


I can't believe it's after 2am and I've been working on this blog for ~adding hours~ .... WOW
Way too long tonight!!

Please let me know how you like the new look!?

Friday, December 18, 2009

Friday Fill-In: Snow Day Edition!

It's that time again!

1. No, we will NOT worry about the foot of snow forecast for today - hot chocolate & blankies are ready!

2. I loved watching Popoo (grandfather) mix molasses & butter, then dip his homemade biscuits in it at the old kitchen table.

3. I watched the steam rising from the hot cup of coffee (or tea) and thought: "Life is good."

4. Chris is going to be okay, one of these days. 

5. I'll take snow over ice any day!

6. Christmas gets more commercialized every year, at least from my point of view, and that stinks!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to going to the holiday concert with hubby (if it's not snowed out), tomorrow my plans include wrapping gifts and relaxing with my hubby & pups, watching movies and thanking God for a warm home during this weather. And Sunday, I want to be able to go to church (snow can't keep us away!), have lunch and nap!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Spinning out of control

Does anyone else ever just feel like their world is spinning out of control? That's how I'm feeling right about now - just too, too much going on in my life lately.


God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.

Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.

Reinhold Niebuhr

Huh. I never read the 2nd part of the Serenity Prayer until I just Googled it to make sure I had the wording right in the first part. I used to think this prayer was just something for AA meetings, which frankly turned me off to it right from the git-go since I have a long family history of alcohol abuse in my family. But in the past year or so, I've embraced it as sort of a motto for myself. Accepting the things I can not change - is really hard for someone who has a really, really hard time NOT being in control of things.

Then there are times like this week - and yes, it's only Tuesday, not a good sign. Times when I feel like I have no control over ANYTHING, and I feel spazzed out and like I'm just turning in circles and waiting for the next phone call, or letter, or email to tell me something ELSE has happened that - yes - I can't control! It's not worry, I don't really worry so much anymore. It's just a feeling of helplessness - of too much work at the end of the year, too much craziness with the holidays that have become just....too much, children growing up and out and making mistakes, and parents being sick and dying and family that I don't even know being the only lifeline I have between the past and the near future and ... it makes no sense, I know. That's why I'm feeling so frazzled. I like things to make sense!!!

But now I sit here, thinking I just figured I'd write a blog entry since I haven't in a few days. I started typing the first thing that came to mind. I went to trusty Google to look up a verse, and I realize that has God used this time - right now, tonight, as I sit here feeling like my life is spinning out of control. He allowed me to come upon that particular version on Google, the version with the second part instead of the other "516,000 results for serenity prayer" that only have the first verse.

I can feel him saying "Take a deep breath. It's ok. You don't have to spin with it all...just come sit awhile with me and let me do what I'm doing in your life - with you, for you, and because of you. I have a plan."

Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. Good times: Ain't we lucky we got 'em.

2. I need to declutter my home.

3. Sleigh bells ring only in Christmas carols.

4. Sometimes I really wish my kids were still little.

5. Once more, same as before!

6. Are you ready for the end?

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to resting after a day of cleaning & making Christmas gifts, tomorrow my plans include an early Christmas get-together at my mom's, and Sunday, I want to lay on the couch with my dogs and nap after church!

Monday, December 07, 2009

I want to try these...

I have been wanting to try some wall graphics in my house for some time. I'm hoping to get the chance to finally do it for FREE through Verging on Forty's give-away! She's teamed up Graphique de France to give away FIVE Home Decals to 5 winners, just for signing up to their newsletter!

Just visit Graphique de France and scroll to the bottom of the page to register for the newsletter. Then hit up Verging on Forty and let her know you've entered!

~crossing fingers that I'm one of the five lucky winners!~

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Rainy Day Ramblins

This year, I haven't been in the Christmas spirit like a lot of folks I know. I didn't rush to get my tree up the day after Thanksgiving (which I usually do every year). I have bought exactly ONE gift thus far ~glancing at calendar~. I just put up the first of my decorations this past Thursday night, after a sudden wave of Christmas Cheer overcame me while in the holiday section at Walgreens. I went in to pick up a $5 prescription and somehow came out with $60 worth of Christmas stuff! I hate when that happens.

Today I've been debating on whether to even put up the big tree this year. I bought two little porch trees, and was thinking maybe just one of those on a table in the living room. The thought of this makes me feel like my grandmother, who stopped putting up "real" trees years ago. She had a little one that she would put in the den on a little round table, with tiny little decorations on it - if she felt like decorating it at all. Sometimes, it would just be a simple little tree with lights. I always felt sad for her, not having a big tree like when we were little. In my mind, it somehow signaled that she was giving up on life - that even the simplest thing like decorating a tree wasn't worth the effort. I would try to get her to allow me to put up a big tree for her every year, and she'd have none of it. I used to think "This may be her last Christmas, and she'll have spent it with this sad, tiny little tree!"

Now, in my old age, I think I've realized that she was just TIRED!! She practically raised 7 grand-children along with her 1 daughter (my mom), plus all the assorted strays that we'd bring to her house on a regular basis. You can imagine the Thanksgiving through New Years season with 7 grandkids, their spouses or significant others as they grew up, great-grandchildren as they came along... I think around 75 years old, she decided enough is enough - no more of this holiday madness! Her little tree was sufficient cheer for her little house, and it was quite beautiful in it's simplicity.

So today..."Big tree, or no big tree. That is the question."

I *have* gotten into the spirit by printing up some nice business-card tags for homemade gifts. I'm going to make some cocoa and coffees for those friends that might enjoy that sort of thing, some body scrub for all the special ladies in my life, and for the men...uhhh...what do men like that I can make at home & put in a pretty jar?? (any suggestions?)

I found the templates for my cards at Avery Design & Print Online - since I had some Avery business-card stock in my desk that would never get used for anything else. I made not only the gift tags, but cute little instruction tags for each mix. They turned out really nice, if I do say so myself!

Oh, by the way - Nana (my grandmother of the tiny trees) just turned 99 in October. I guess she wasn't giving up on life at all! ;)

Give gifts that make a difference this year!


I'd like to issue a Bloggy Challenge today! Instead of giving gifts this year that will, most likely, end up in next summer's yard sale - why not give a gift that will make a HUGE difference in the life of a stranger? It's so easy, and you - and the recipient - will feel so great for doing it! Just visit Samaritan’s Purse Christmas gift catalog and pick one or two or ten to give.

Here are some of my favorites…

  • Feed a hungry baby for a week $9
  • Give an orphan a month of loving care $35
  • Rescue a child from bondage and abuse $75
  • Provide care for AIDS orphans and widows $45
  • Supply a community with clean water $18 (for a family)
  • Bibles and Christian literature $15
  • Or choose "Where Most Needed" and make a donation of any amount. It was so hard for me to decide that this is the option I chose.

I wonder how many donations we could get if we all teamed up and wrote one post on our blogs with our favorite gifts of love and a link to Samaritan’s Purse?

Oh, and if you purchase a gift by Sunday at 9pm EST, you have 10 extra entries into this Sondra Roberts purse giveaway at Like A Warm Cup of Coffee! (retail value $107)

Please leave a comment and let us all know what your family chose to give!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Random Dozen

I am joining Linda today for Random dozen. I think I should have had a few more cups of coffee before doing this one...

1. Which Wizard of Oz character are you most like? The Scarecrow, definitely! I seem to have lost my brain lately...

2. When you're deciding what you're going to wear each morning, which item do you select first? Why? Pants...because if I have jeans to wear I'm good, can match up any shirt with them. If not, then I have to wear scrubs (thinking work days here) and then I have to find a shirt that matches.

3. What kind of animal do you think the world could live without? Are snakes considered animals? I really dislike snakes....a lot. Or rats. Since snakes eat rats, that would work out perfectly!

4. How many Christmas trees are in your home? None yet...well, there is one in a box in the attic. I want to have a couple of little trees this year, in addition to the big living room tree. However, I haven't made any progress in the tree direction at all.

5. Would you prefer to be emotionless if it mean you didn't have to feel a heartbreak? No way! Who would want to miss out on FEELINGS? What a boring life that would be.

6. Do you ever experience holiday let-down or depression? Most every year.

7. Do you like Michael Jackson's music? Yes, I thought he was a great performer and had a lot to offer through his music. Off the Wall was bangin'!

8. Why is it that we never judge people who have their teeth fixed for cosmetic reasons, but every other cosmetic procedure has a stigma? Hmm, I've never really thought about it.

9. Enjoy horseback riding? I haven't been on a horse since I was little. It's one of those things I keep saying I'm going to do, but never get around to it.

10. Shoes--practical or stylish? Yes, please. ;) But if I have to choose - practical.

11. What was the name of your first pet? Feel free to post a pic. First one I can remember was a mutt named Mandy (after the Barry Manilow song). Yes, she came and she gave without taking... ~sniffle~

12. What percentage of your Christmas shopping is done? Ha! I have one small gift for hubby (more like a stocking stuffer) and 1 for stepdaughter. And that is all I've done!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

'Tis the Season for great music!

Over at ExemplifyOnline, Kristen is treating us to some wonderful Christmas themed fun this month!

Today's is listing your Christmas Playlist. Here's mine, so far:

Oh Holy Night – Martina McBride
TSO – Christmas Eve/Sarajevo 12/24b (and the whole Christmas Eve and Other Stories CD)
Mary, Did You Know? – Michael English (I get chills just typing that one!)
Santa Claus is Coming to Town – gotta love The Boss! (Bruce Springsteen)
Do They Know It’s Christmas – Band Aid
Happy Christmas (War is Over) – John Lennon
Holly Jolly Christmas – Burl Ives
Let it Snow – Dean Martin
Breathe of Heaven – Amy Grant
O Come, O Come, Emmanuel – Nicole C. Mullen
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen – Sarah Mclachlan & Bare Naked Ladies
Joy to the World – Natalie Grant
Away in a Manger – Casting Crowns
Anything by Mannheim Steamroller
Anything by Bing Crosby!

What are your favorite Christmas tunes??

Link up with Exemplify's Christmas Playlist for your chance to win the new Casting Crowns Christmas CD

be sure to check out the fun stuff the rest of the month there!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Simple Woman's Daybook

I'm continually amazed at how God is always right on time! The past few weeks, I have felt so frazzled and out of sorts, due to too many commitments and a general lack of being able to do things that truly bring me joy and peace. I decided yesterday to let go of some outside commitments and focus more on home, family, and devotion (Bible study, prayer). And tonight, I came upon this great meme on Homesteaders Heart's blog! This will be a nice reminder that I need to slow down, stop, and think about the little things each day in my desire to be a more Simple Woman. :)


Outside my is dark & rainy.

I am thinking...that this is a cool new-to-me meme.

I am thankful for... the fridge FULL of food that we are blessed to have, even though I have no room for the stuffing I have to make tonight for tomorrow's work luncheon.

I am wearing... brown yoga pants w/pink trim, and shirt that says:

I am remembering...
that I need to make that stuffing for tomorrow's work luncheon!

I am creating... this blog post. :)

I am going... finish this blog, check my Facebook, try to locate some wedding songs for a friend, and either read or watch some mindless tv before sleep (desperately need the downtime).

I am reading... Peace Pilgrim - "Peace Pilgrim walked and spoke continuously across America from 1953 until her death in 1981. "Walking until given shelter and fasting until given food," she carried a simple yet powerfully enduring message of peace."

I am hoping... to hear from my sons soon.

On my tomorrow and all that needs to be done in the next two days before Thanksgiving vacation.

Noticing that... the house is quiet except the hum of the dishwasher.

Pondering these words... "Count your blessings"

From the kitchen... again with the stuffing for tomorrow!

Around the house... I got a bit done today: some laundry (still not completely done, but is it ever?), sweeping, kitchen & bedrooms are clean, office could use some tidying.

One of my favorite things. . . my beautiful inside-and-out daughter!

A few plans for the rest of the week. . . work tomorrow & Wednesday, lunch at Mother-in-Law's house Thursday, then to my moms to see all of my family (the ones in the continental US, at least). SO looking forward to seeing my baby grand-niece again!

From my picture journal...

HUGE fish my brother caught in the Bay on Saturday!

The Latest at Casa de Frugal

I've been a little MIA lately here in Blogville. No, it's not due to the craziness of the holiday season - as I've done absolutely NOTHING to prepare for either Thanksgiving or Christmas!

It's just been life. Crazy, unpredictable life.

The good news: My daughter was inducted into the National Honor Society last week. I am beyond proud of her!! She is such a blessing, and the best daughter anyone could ever hope to have!

The bad news: Last Wednesday, we lost our beloved Bebo - our 5 year old dachshund. I never knew I could cry so much over a dog - but it was simply devastating. He was such a character, loved everyone, and would do just about anything for a slice of cheese. He was partially paralyzed in January '09, the vet said he would never walk again. We nursed him back to health - with MUCH help from the wonderful people at - only to lose him just as he was back to his normal self. It seems so unfair. :*( Our house is too, too quiet now without the pitter-patter of 4 more paws all the time...

My husband's friend and long-time coworker died 2 weeks ago. He was only 47 years old, and fought a year-long battle with stage 4 cancer before succumbing and going home, surrounded by his family and friends. Robert was a super dad, loving husband, and daddy to 5 dachshunds of his own that he loved so much. The day after he passed away, his beloved Lillie (who had stayed in his Hospice bed with him) quietly died as well. She had no health problems. Anyone who says dogs don't have a soul - well....I don't believe them.

I like to think that Bebo and Lillie are both sitting in Robert's lap in heaven,
getting belly rubs all day long and as many treats as they can eat.
I can just see Robert smiling as he throws their favorite toys for them to fetch.
They are all happy and healthy and waiting for us all to join them.
We miss you all!

Friday, November 20, 2009

$100 for a 2-3 hr photo shoot? You're kidding, right?!?!

Nope, not kidding! If you're in the NC/VA area and would like some FABULOUS holiday photos for your family, check out my niece's work here.

She offers a 2-3 hour professional photo shoot for $100 (up to 6 people! $25 for each additional person) - as many outfit changes as you'd like, as many poses as you'd like!

The best part, though - she doesn't require you to buy your prints from her! She gives you a disk with the edited photos (no PROOF stamped across the front of them all) and you can print them at home, drugstore, Walmart, online, email them - whatever you want! They are yours!

Sounds like the work wouldn't be great for the low price, but just look at her photos and you'll be amazed! She's offering these low prices since she's just really starting to advertise her new business... so get in now before she becomes famous and you can't get an appointment! ;)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Money-Saving gift that lasts all year!

If you are looking for the perfect gift for the person who loves saving money - check out the COUPONIZER! This is a gift that, literally, will make them money every time they use it! The best way to organized all of your coupons and sales in one convenient spot!

With The Couponizer, you will save lots of money of course, but also time and energy too! Our revolutionary coupon organizer is more than just a coupon holder or book, but a whole system of tools designed for consistent savings you can take to the bank!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Exemplify today!

Been super-busy here lately, so I haven't gotten to blog much... what with work, kids, ummm....Farmville on Facebook (my latest addiction) ;)

So today I share with you my third Weekly Wednesday Whatever, which I am blessed to be able to contribute to Exemplify Magazine Online. Hope you enjoy, comment, and link back! :)

Friday, November 13, 2009

DOH! Wrong Friday! LOL

I pulled up the wrong Friday Fill-In! Oops!

1. The last band I saw live was Casting Crowns with Michael English & Natalie Grant.

2. What I look forward to most on Thanksgiving is spending time relaxing with my family.

3. My Christmas/holiday shopping is not even started...ugh.

4. Thoughts of cleaning fill my head, but here I sit.

5. I wish I could wear something cute and sexy again... (out with my hubby, of course) unfortunately, those words don't match my bod right now.

6. Bagpipes are awesome!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sorting clothes for the give-away at church tomorrow, tomorrow my plans include And Sunday, I want to the give-away in the morning, taking Kelsey & Megan to Danville, then a House Party at Hannah's!rest after going to church and Robert's memorial service!

Friday Fill-In

1. Moving on up, to the East Side.

2. Thanks to our soldiers, Americans can live free.

3. My best quality is I like to serve others.

4. Just give me the details.

5. In nearly 10 years, I'll be 50 years old!!! :o

6. A shower and a few thousand bucks is what I need right now!

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to sorting clothes for the give-away at church tomorrow, tomorrow my plans include And Sunday, I want to the give-away in the morning, taking Kelsey & Megan to Danville, then a House Party at Hannah's!rest after going to church and Robert's memorial service!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

HomeScan Invite! Get more freebies! :)

If you've been waiting to get into the HomeScan program, wait no more!

I have invites for you! Just click here to sign up and get more details: HomeScan by Nielsen

What’s in it for me?

You’ll earn gift points that are redeemable for name-brand merchandise, including electronics equipment, jewelry, household items, toys, and much more!

You’ll also earn entries into our many exciting sweepstakes. But, above all, you’ll be making your opinions count!

What is the Homescan Consumer Panel?

Homescan focuses on measuring consumer attitudes and behavior. The panel is made up of people just like you, whose opinions help manufacturers and retailers make decisions on what products to develop or improve.

Homescan is a part of The Nielsen Company, the world's leading marketing information provider.

How does it work?

As a panel member, Homescan will provide you with a hand-held scanner. Every time you or members of your household shop, you’ll use the scanner to scan the barcodes on all of your purchases.

Then, once a week, you'll upload your purchase information. It's as easy as that!

You will make a difference!

The Homescan Consumer Panel is a "mini-USA" that represents all types of Americans. Manufacturers and retailers will look at the information you send us to decide what products to make and sell to consumers all across the country. Your consumer voice will make a difference.

Click here to sign up for HomeScan now!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Universal Avatar! No more uploading!

If you're like me, you might get tired of having to upload a new pic (or the same pic 100 times) each time you register for a new site that uses avatars. Well, Kristen - editor at - told me about this awesome site today:

At Gravatar, you can upload a picture (or more) and associate them with your email accounts. So, for every site that you enter a particular email account to register, that picture will automatically be your default profile pic! You can have multiple pictures and multiple emails linked together under your one Gravatar account.

And of course, since I'm posting it here, you know it's FREE!! ;) Check it out - I'm lovin' it!

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Some new, neat free e-books!

I just got this email newsletter from Free and thought these looked interesting enough to pass on. I haven't read them yet, but they look pretty good to me! Take a peek!

(note: I am not an affiliate or otherwise compensated in any way by

The Vegetarian Paradox

Health, by Russell Eaton

The Vegetarian Paradox reveals why vegetarians are less healthy than non-vegetarians. Why is this so? Surely a diet with plenty of fruit & vegetables should make you healthier? What’s going on? The extraordinary research that is now coming to light is clearly showing that, compared to their non-vegetarians peers, vegetarians are more at risk of cancer, dementia, obesity, heart disease, stroke, eating disorders, infertility and other ailments. This astounding new report will shock you whether or not you are vegetarian. This high quality ebook is fully referenced. Download it now.

Strange & Weird Stories

Short Stories, by Nathan Orion

You probably remember, or have seen reruns of that great 60s TV series, Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone, where strange things happened without any scientific explanation. Things just happened, right? And you lived with it. Scifi magazines want scientific justification. I don’t buy that. Things happen every day that defy explanation. Fantasy Magazines seem to lean toward sword & sorcery, & Horror magazines—in my mind lean toward too much gore. So, if you can get past the fact that these stories defy explanation, aren’t too bloody, and no dwarves, then you are in for some great reading.


Drama, by David St. James

SHEA MCTORY, 31, is way down on his luck. His photography career fell to the party scene. For a few years he’s been on the street, scratching a living. He gets more than bargained for when he answers the ad: VOLUNTEERS WANTED, FREE FOOD, PAY….All he wanted was a roof over his head, to earn some money, maybe get some good food. But the food is not tasty; he’s locked up with an adolescent-minded ex-sailor and a psychopath; he stumbles across secret, illegal & dangerous research; meets NATALIE, the love of us life. Frustrations build, tempers flare, love affairs, friendships, hatreds, develop.

Press 1 for Pig Latin

Business, by Robert S. Swiatek

If you hear those 5 words, we’re sunk. This not a book about farm animals - it covers technological advances: cars, TV, bombs, the computer and telephone. Technology has failed us, giving us too many bad side effects to the people and the earth. Despite this, we have to fix it, since there are so many benefits. This book offers solutions to clean up the mess that the people themselves have made.

Monday, November 09, 2009

I was hungry...

So, after blogging and talking and researching it for quite awhile - I finally started my fast. Before you read further, realize that I know that there are people who have done this before, and for MUCH longer, but this was my first time and frankly - God blew my socks off!!

I'd never fasted (on purpose) before, and I was certain I'd cave before afternoon break time. However, being the overachiever that I sometimes am - I decided to do 24 days, ending on Thanksgiving Day - how perfect!

But after 5 days, I started feeling led to stop. I questioned whether it was me subconsciously thinking that I wanted to stop, or God telling me to stop... so I kept going for 2 more days.

Sunday at church, I got this overwhelming sense of peace and felt.... "ok, I'm done." And the crazy part of it all is - after 7 days without so much as a nibble of a crumb of food, I didn't even want any. It wasn't like I was starving and thinking I needed an 'excuse' to stop fasting. I haven't felt better in ...well, ever. Physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually - never better. Just typing this makes me want to do it again! My husband was pleasantly surprised at how NICE I was during this, as well. The night before I started he said "Please don't get all cranky and take it out on me." I don't know where he got that crazy idea! o:) Instead of being cranky, I was happier last week than I can ever remember being. Peaceful, content, at times bouncy and energetic (yeah, people were looking at me kinda funny at those times) - but mostly just so at peace. Amazing.

You know how we always say "I'm starving!" or even just "I'm hungry!"? One thing I did while I was going through this fast was to think about and pray for all of those who don't have the choice of whether or not they will eat each day: in my neighborhood, my county, my state, country, world...there are people who die every day because they have no food. It really puts things into perspective. And I'm amazed now at just how little food we really need to survive - and how truly gluttonous we can be, even just eating a "normal meal". Seriously, a regular dinner for one person at say - Olive Garden - could feed a starving family somewhere to the point of them all being stuffed. And yet, we just take it for granted and say "More breadsticks, please!"

Sorry, now I'm babbling's hard to put all of this into words that make any sense. :)

This is definitely something that I will do regularly. I never would have imagined I would/could go without eating for a WEEK, but I did and I'm now walking closer to God than I ever have before. I was hungry - but not for food. I craved worship, I prayed constantly, I didn't want to even watch tv or listen to anything but praise music on the radio... it was incredible and all seemingly out of my control.

It is hard for me to put into words what this has meant to me. Bill Bright of Campus Crusade expresses exactly what I've felt, though:

As I began my fast, I was not sure I could continue for forty days. But my confidence was in the Lord to help me. Each day His presence encouraged me to continue. The longer I fasted, the more I sensed the presence of the Lord. The Holy Spirit refreshed my soul and spirit, and I experienced the joy of the Lord as seldom before. Biblical truths leaped at me from the pages of God's Word. My faith soared as I humbled myself and cried out to
God and rejoiced in His presence.

I am posting this so that anyone else who is afraid or wondering about fasting will know that "with God, ALL things are possible". Don't be afraid. You can do it.

If you're feeling led to fast - do it! You will never regret it.

Here are some great links on fasting and prayer:
7 Basic Steps to Successful Fasting & Prayer
Fasting for Dummies
There are tons more... just Google "prayer and fasting"

And this is a great book - not just about fasting, but it's what got me thinking about it: Starving Jesus: Off the Pew, Into the World

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Stay at Home, & Share the wealth!

My dear friend for more than 25 years (man, I'm old!!) told me about this program this past week, and I've already signed up. Check it out if you want to make some extra money or even be able to stay at home full-time one day soon...

Basically, you get a website and access to tons of business training videos, and all you do is promote your site and get others to join.
You don't have to buy anything, build the site, nothing!

You just sign up, and you'll get an email with a link to your personal site. Then you just tell your friends, family, blog readers, Tweeps, coworkers, pass out fliers, however you want to advertise your site. Not only do you make $, but every person you sign up makes $ signing up their people, so everyone wins.

Just click on the link and you can sign up there: Work at Home now!

It's $25 a month, but you make that back with your first person that signs up! We spend more than that going to a movie - and I'd rather MAKE money than spend it. LOL After the first person signs up on your site, the next 2 people go to your "upline", which would be Cassandra and myself, then the rest that you sign up send YOU $25 a month, every month - you do the math! If you don't like numbers (like me) *unless they are extra 000's on your checks LOL* you can see the Compensation Plan here: Work at Home Now Compensation Plan

It adds up with every person that signs up through your (free!) site. :) The way I look at it, it's a way for us all to make money while sharing with our friends at the same time. Plus, we get access to all those free business building tools that can help us in any field!

The best part, to me, is that no $ goes to the company - it comes directly to YOUR Paypal account (or Google Checkout account, or many others you choose from). The company makes their money sellling the extra videos and teaching stuff -
but YOU don't have to buy any of it if you don't want (I'm not!).

Check it out, and let me know what you think!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Do you hear the Jingle Bells yet??

Christmas is coming! Are you ready?
I'm not!
It's snuck up on me again this year...LOL

But luckily my friend, Cassandra (who I've known since middle school - that's a LONG time) sent me an email about this company this morning. I'm VERY skeptical of these things, so I checked it out pretty thoroughly, and found nothing negative (except for the usual haters who's life mission is to bash others - they are easy to spot when you've researched as much online as I have in my life!)

I wanted to tell you about this, since I know we are all wanting to earn extra $ these days. I won't pester you to join - I hate when people do that myself. Just check it out and let me know if you have any questions...

Before anything else though, I want to tell you the upfront cost - because frankly that was my biggest concern: $25.00 investment and you can cancel at anytime!

David & I spend that every weekend going to a movie. LOL After that, it's $25 a month, but for each person that registers through your site, you get $25 - every month - so you break even with your FIRST person. The compensation plan is here - just look in the top toolbar. Residual income is how all the internet gurus are getting rich - and now you can too - or at least make some extra spending money! It just depends on how much time you want to invest in promoting your site - through your own blog, email, Facebook, Twitter, word-of-mouth, however you want. Personally, I'm praying for a blessing!!

Basically, you just promote your website (which the company provides, you don't even have to tweak anything!) Membership includes free access to e-business building tools. You don't sell anything at all - just direct people to your site and let them make up their minds if they want to participate - just like I'm doing now.

The company makes their money by selling cds/dvds/ebooks - which are completely and totally optional - you never have to buy any of them at all.

Now, I'll warn you - this site looks REALLY cheesy, in my opinion. LOL But it must be working! My friend, Cassandra S. (you can find her in my FB friends list) has already made $$ and she just started on SUNDAY of this week (11/1/09). Her "upline" - a personal friend of hers - made $600 in 3 days. Even if you don't make that much - you will get your $25 back with your first enrollment. Again, it's only a $25.00 investment and you can cancel at anytime.

Plus, you will have access to tons of videos/ebooks/etc to teach you how to grow ANY business - which can help in other areas of your business career, too. Anyway, just thought I'd pass it on in case you're interested!

Just click here to check it out by clicking HERE.

Remember to check out the Comp Plan in the top toolbar to see the potential earnings!

Feel free to forward this to anyone who might be interested - they can also contact me with questions directly at

God bless!

100 FREE Business Cards

Get 100 Free Business Cards at - Expires 11/30/09

Exemplify - new meme!

I'm more than a little nervous today.
The new ExemplifyOnline meme, The Weekly Wednesday Whatever debuts today! I am so honored to be part of the amazing group of women at Exemplify, and I thank Kristen and the team for trusting me to write this weekly feature.
It is truly humbling to be used in the company of such godly women writers and ministers!

My prayer is that whatever is written will be from Him and used by Him for HIS Glory. I pray that as you read each week, you are blessed by what God gives me to ponder... and that it will draw you closer to Him.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoy!

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Christian Reality TV?? + free e-Book!

I was flipping through channels Saturday night, and stopped on what looked like a new reality show. This one is different from the usual, though. It's a Christian reality show called Thunder Road! It follows Ben Cerullo and his crew on their missions around the world.

It was *awesome*!

I got online to check out his website, and found his wonderful new book FREE: "Proof of Love" (e-book). This is great for new Christians and old, and can be a great ministry tool for your friends and family! Check it out! :) There are TONS of other resources at the site to help you grow in your walk with Jesus.

This team are not a bunch of bench warmers - they are going OUT to reach people, and don't care how far they have to travel or how desperate the location. It's an awesome thing to see, and so inspirational to see all of the lives changed and people who may never have heard the Word receiving it through this small group of men & women from various backgrounds.

You can watch Thunder Road at or check your local Christian television station listings.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Older and wiser? I wonder...

Is it just me, or am I getting dumber with age instead of wiser? I'm 40 years old, and I am constantly walking around looking for items that are already in my hand: car keys, cell phone, coffee cup! How does one forget they are holding a coffee cup?!

My 16 year old daughter asked me a few months ago, with great concern in her voice, if I had Alzheimers. This was after walking out of Steak & Shake, digging in my purse for my keys, which I was already holding. And forgetting where we'd parked. Umm, and forgetting to leave the waitress a tip. I chalked it up to a stressful back-to-school shopping day.

I used to say that my babies sucked my brain cells out in utero, which I still maintain is true to some extent. (after all, that would explain why they are exceptionally brilliant!) But the last was produced 16 years ago, so - like my "baby fat" excuse that I've been using ever since, that's getting a little old as well.

I can concentrate on a variety of things in my work life, carry on normal conversations, even study intense topics with perfect understanding. But I can't remember my lunch that's sitting beside my purse when I leave in the morning! My neighbors must get a kick out of the daily routine of me pulling out of the driveway, backing up, running back into the house for some forgotten item, then getting half-way down the road again before I have to turn around and come back for something else that I've missed.

Whenever I tell another woman about this - especially those a little older - they nod sympathetically and say "Oh honey, it's just the hormones. It'll get better." Hormones? Ok, I can live with that explanation - but WHEN will it get better?? My 99 year old grandmother still complains of hot flashes, for pete's sake! This is what I toiled my whole life (thus far) for - being senile at 40 and having hot flashes for the next 59 years?!

I think I'll go with Maxine's explanation...

Monday, October 26, 2009

Look who's in a skirt!

Skirt! Magazine

I noticed that my sister-in-law had become a "fan" of skirt! magazine on Facebook recently. I'd never heard of it, and didn't think much more about it. Until last week when I was at our local mall (aka "the hall" since it's now just about 5 stores and a big hall that old folks walk for exercise) and saw the display rack with the other newspaper racks outside. skirt! is free, btw, in case you didn't know - so I picked up a copy and brought it home to check it out.

Last night, I finally got the chance to pick it up and start reading. skirt! is a GREAT little mag just for women, by women, and about women. Imagine my surprise when I saw a full page with a huge picture of someone...

I couldn't quite place how I knew her....

then it hit me:

I already knew that Jen was a fellow Tarheel, but it was strange recognize someone that I "knew" - but only from an online blog that I just stumbled across a few months ago. Gotta love modern technology!

YES, Jen has a full-page feature about her frugal ways and fashion style in the current issue of skirt! Check it out online and share with your friends, or better yet - pick up a few print copies (they are even more fun!) at a location near you - remember, they are free!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Surprise Revealed!

Sooooo.... I finally got to give hubby his long-awaited 45th birthday surprise today!! It had been postponed twice already due to weather. I had prayed on Friday night (after the 2nd postponement) that if it was delayed again, I would take that as a sign from God that Hubby wasn't meant to do it. Luckily, God decided it was ok, and gave us PERFECT weather today!

My sweet hubs has always wanted to fly an airplane, so for his birthday I booked a Discovery Flight through the wonderful folks at Piedmont Flight Training
. They were super nice, and it was absolutely great!! I think it happened so fast once we got there that he really didn't know what had hit him. We walked in, and within 5 minutes he was on the plane putting on his headset and learning the controls.

I'll admit to being
just a little worried when we got there and this kid in an AC/DC hoodie told us that the original pilot scheduled had something else to come up, and that someone else would be taking my hubby up in the air.

Turns out - the
kid was taking him up!

Jason is only 19 years old, but has every flying certification you can think of - it was mind boggling! He told hubby that he's been flying longer than he's been driving a car, and is already licensed to fly solo, commercial, high altitude, instrument rating - you name it. Of course, I would have had no idea of all of this
(and didn't, until they came back to the ground!) by looking at him. He's younger than my oldest son, for pete's sake! He was AWESOME, though, and hubby really enjoyed getting to know him, and trusted him implicitly. By the way, he had his pilot's shirt on - with all his decorations - under the AC/DC hoodie. :) Ok, so it was a little chilly...

Here's my sweetie getting ready to head off into the wild blue yonder in his first (hopefully of many) flights! Of course, I've created a monster - he's now talking about selling his Harley to pay for his pilot's license... which I wouldn't mind at all! Who doesn't want to FLY on vacation instead of drive?? ;)

Oh, to round out the Perfect Man Day, as I'm calling it now,
we went to dinner at Outback then I dropped hubby off at the coliseum to see
AC/DC with his son and our daughter-in-law and her dad.
I'm so happy he had a great day!

I love you, honey!! And sorry it took so long for your surprise! :)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Friday Fill-Ins

1. The crickets sing, a happy song.

2. Share a smile wherever you are.

3. I want to get far away from the rat race!

4. To retire a millionaire at 30 ; this was a dream.

5. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

6. Where I come from, lotsa' front porch pickin'...

7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to hopefully giving hubby his long-awaited birthday gift (outside event, if not rained out AGAIN), tomorrow my plans include the Buckhead Betties purse warehouse sale (!!!) and Sunday, I want to rest - hopefully without this cough I've had for 2 weeks!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday

Thanks to my
very thoughtful fellow MamaBzz-er, Sharon, I now have my very own Grab-My-Button button! Isn't this just precious??

frugal grace

Please grab-it, if you'd like, and share on your site. Leave a comment and let me know, and I'll come grab yours, as well! :)

Check out Sharon's blog, while you're at it -
she has a GREAT new Thursday meme herself!
Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Heart Just Swells...

The Connection of 99 Years

On 10/10/10 my Nana was born.
We celebrated her 99th birthday this month, and my niece got this
amazing shot of Nana with
her brand new great-great-granddaughter, 4 month old Lacie.

Two beautiful ladies that I am so blessed to have in my life!
They definitely pick-me-up. :)

My heart just swells every time I look at this photo.
Just look at Lacie's eyes as she looks into Nana's...
the connection surpassing 99 years...

God is Good.

Need more pick-me-up for your Wednesday? Head over to MamaBzz!