Friday, January 30, 2015

"You a carrot"

Genesis 1: 29
 "Then God said, ' I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.' "

I love vegetables all kinds...even brusselsprouts.  Carrots are one of the first vegetables all of my children loved. Mostly just raw with lots of ranch dressing, but I was happy they were eating them.  I feel if you put vegetables on the side or in something you serve to your children, you're winning half the battle (I'll take it!).  For my youngest daughter, I've made it a tradition to make her a home-made carrot cake for special events like her birthdays and her dedication at church. I longed for my grandmother's recipe for a simple dense carrot cake, but my mother didn't have it.  So after perusing the internet, I found a similar cake in taste and texture. It's on the "Crisco" web-site.  Here's a link Old-Fashioned Carrot Cake.  I did eliminate a teaspoon of salt in the recipe, because the first time I made it, it seemed a bit salty (it was good, just not the taste I was going for).  I also, don't add the walnuts or raisins. Unfortunately, I know my kids would just pick them out anyway.  Since then my mom did get the recipe for my grandmother's cake from an old recipe box that my aunt had.  I haven't made it yet, but my mom made it for my father last fall and just this week again for my dad's 71st birthday,  Happy Birthday, Dad!!

Yesterday, I was driving around with my mother running errands. Frankie, my 2 yr old. was repeating everything my mother was saying. So, my mother told her she was a little parrot. Not to be outdone, Frankie mirrored back,  " You  a carrot" ...

 God, thank you for children...and vegetables too!

First birthday owl "smash" cake- Old-Fashioned Carrot Cake recipe.

Successful errand running yesterday. Found this turtleneck  at "Talbots" for $14! 

Thursday, January 29, 2015


Leviticus 12: 8
" And if she be not able to bring a lamb, then she shall bring two turtles, or two young pigeons; the one for the burnt offering, and the other for a sin offering: and the priest shall make an atonement for her, and she shall be clean."

This is the King James translation of this verse. Not sure why turtles would be an acceptable substitute for a lamb or young pigeons, but who am I to question this?  This part of Leviticus describes a ritual for a woman after giving birth. They were to bring this offering for a burnt offering and another for a sin offering. Women were considered unclean after child birth, if she bore a male there was a different time frame than for a were unclean twice as long for having a little girl! Thank you, Lord, for coming into the world and being the perfect sacrifice for all my uncleanliness and sin. Where in the world would I get a lamb or turtles or pigeons if you hadn't?!

Turtles are on my mind today because of my outfit (of course!). It has been so cold here this week, that I broke out my turtleneck! I only own one knit turtleneck. I did have a few cashmere turtlenecks, but I didn't care for them properly when I stored them and they ended up with holes in them (I'm assuming moth holes, yuck). I don't know what my aversion is to turtlenecks. They may give me bad memories from junior high and high school, when you had to have the right brand. However, I've noticed a lot of cute outfits this winter with turtlenecks, and I want a new one! I know I could probably pick one up on a great sale now. So, off to the store I go, cause baby it's cold outside and Mamma wants a turtleneck!

Pink turtleneck layered under black asymmetrical cardigan sweater- "Kohl's". Paired with white pin-wale corduroy pants- "Talbots", tan wedge healed booties- "Target"  and one of my great statement necklaces from  "The Pink Silhouette". Photo credit today goes to my beautiful 8 year old daughter. Not bad!!
( next time we'll clear away the shoes and backpacks) 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015


Exodus 39: 11
" the second row was turquoise, lapis lazuli and emerald; "

This verse is from the "Raiders of the Lost Ark" part of the Bible. It's a very detailed description of where Moses was to place the tablets of  the 10 Commandments, specifically what the breastpiece was to look like for the priest. Wowwy Zowwy! That's a fancy breastpiece. I probably won't be getting one anytime soon.  In lieu of the breastpiece, I do wear a lot of turquoise. It's one of my favorite colors. It's also my birthstone and now I know it carries God's seal of approval. Win-win all around!!

Off to the library for story-time this morning, so an outfit I can sit on the floor in is a must. Kudos to my 11 year old photographer!

Here I am with my turquoise top, layered over a white tank. I'm also wearing my "boyfriend jeans"- "Target" , and super cute leopard print tennis shoes- "Target".  My cross necklace is gold and turquoise (only the turquoise is real!). I love the combination of gold with the turquoise, most of my turquoise pieces are set in silver.  My favorite accessory is the goofy teenager behind me.  Lord give me strength!

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

The cold never bothered me anyway!

Revelation 3: 15
" I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other!"

That Elsa; she's good. The cold does bother me! I don't like to be cold. I don't like a cold shower, I don't like the cold weather, I don't like cold coffee in the morning (iced coffee is great later in the day!). I most especially don't want my faith to be "cold".  I had lunch with a friend not long ago, and she told me that she hadn't realized that I was so "religious". Ouch, that hurts. I don't necessarily want to be labeled as "religious", but I do want to people to know that I am faithful to my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. I want to be "hot" for Christ! Lord, I pray today, that my faith will never get cold.

Speaking of youngest daughter is a "Frozen" addict. My husband Jim and I made it our mission in life last week to have her meet Anna and Elsa.  I'm proud to say we were successful! One of many precious moments in Disney World last week, was when she finally got to meet both of Arendelle's finest.

I highly recommend "Fast Pass" in Disney. With your "Magic Band" and a "Fast Pass" reservation, you cut your wait time down dramatically. No long lines for the roller coasters, no long lines to meet your favorite Disney characters. Brilliant!

Magic Bands are very practical in Disney and you can even get "bling" for them!

Such a touching moment.

Monday, January 26, 2015

There's no place like home.

Mark 5: 19
"Jesus did not let him, but said, 'Go home to your family and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you'."

We are home from Disney World! Boy, did we have a wonderful time. I felt truly blessed to have had this once in a lifetime opportunity to spend nearly a week in Disney (thank you Mom and Dad!). I would love to tell you that I'm so glad to be home...not so much. I'm not depressed about it. I'm not angry about it. I'm just feeling a bit let down. I love that my home is bigger than our hotel room, that I was able to cook my family a terrific meal (thank you Pioneer Woman!) and that I was able to sit at my dining room table with my coffee, my Bible and my journal and have time with my Lord.  Why then, why am I not happy to be home?

Apart from the fact that Disney World is truly a magical place, I wouldn't want to live there. I would however, love to have brought the weather back with me; most days were sunny and in the 70's.  I just feel restless here at home. The house is under renovation, the weather is cold and snowy, the kids are back to school (well actually school was cancelled today and probably tomorrow due to the weather).  I will miss the joy I saw on the faces of my family, I will miss the freedom I had to take an early morning run in the sun, I will miss...vacation!

Lord, help me to share the blessings that I felt last week, with my family and friends. This house is truly not my home but I am home where you are. Thank you, Lord, for the sabbatical, the respite and the renewal. 

Life-savers in Disney World, my "Asics" running shoes from "Kohls", and this cute "Lilly" ID cross-body phone case from "The Pink Silhouette"

Frankie and Mommy enjoying our favorite flying elephant.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


Job 8: 21
"He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy."

This is what I think I look like today...

Ruth Buzzi- "Laugh-In"
Hopefully, it's a bit better than that! It's been a busy week packing for Disney, and Frankie has been sick all week, so I'm a little rough around the edges. My prayer today is for laughter, for fun and joy! I'd love to see some lol's in my comment section today.

When I'm having a less than joyous day, I usually feel better when I wear something colorful or cute. Here is a pic of my new Talbots top, that has the word joy in 9 different languages. It was part of their holiday collection, but I think that the colors and the message are certainly timeless.

long sleeve "Joy" t-shirt- "Talbots"

Now, get off your chair, put on something fun, and go out and... "Make em laugh"!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

"Be kind to your parents, though they don't deserve it..."

Ephesians 4: 32
"Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

The title of my post is the first line of a song that I learned in elementary school chorus. The second line is "remember they're grownups, a difficult stage of life". Amen!  Being kind is a common theme that has been popping up for me this week. My father always says, "Be nice!".  We sometimes get these words confused, nice and kind. We are never told in the Bible to be nice, we are told often to be kind. Websters dictionary defines nice as: pleasing, agreeable, well-behaved. Kind is defined as: showing a gentle nature and a desire to help others.  Kindness is more about serving others than about pleasing others.  "Love is kind" (1 Cor. 13: 4) which means that kindness flows from love for each other, a love that comes when are hearts are filled with God's complete and perfect love. Kindness is a reflection of our relationship with God, something that I have to come to him everyday for in prayer. I pray for you to be filled with kindness today...Be kind!

We are busy around here this week, getting ready to travel to Disney World. A lot of packing got done last weekend, but because we live in MD (current temperature, a balmy 25 degrees!) I'm not sure what we'll need until I get a more up-to-date weather forecast. (I'm praying for mid 70's-80's).  My parents purchased all of us Mickey Mouse t-shirts for Christmas with our names on them. A must-wear for our family breakfast and dinner outings. So cute!

Mia's Disney t-shirt

I'm also hoping to pull out some shorts and dresses. I love my anchor dress and hope to wear it sometime during out trip. This picture was taken last summer with my Bella, we packed this outfit for her, too.

me: navy anchor dress- "The Pink Silhouette"
Bella: anchor t-shirt and neon pink shorts- "Target"

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Love is Patient

1 Corinthians 13: 4
"Love is patient, love is kind.  It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud."

"Love is patient" has now been taped to 2 of my bathroom mirrors. Not to remind my family, but to remind me. I struggle with this attribute a lot! It's certainly tied into self-control which is a "fruit of the spirit". I have heard often from Christian women "don't pray for that, you'll be tested even more".  I don't believe that. I don't believe that God, my father, would continuously test my patience day after day, moment by moment, to see if I can take it. That would be setting me up for failure. He knows me, he knows my weaknesses, he wouldn't purposefully set me up. What I think he wants from me is not to stop asking, but to keep asking.  Sometimes I remember, and those times I'm successful. Sometimes I forget, and that's when I usually fail. What he wants is for me to fully rely on him. Lord, let me rely on you today and everyday. Amen!

Wear Love.. I attend Central Christian. We have a women's conference in the fall with that theme. It is a very uplifting,Christ centered, faith building 2 day event. We have these great t-shirts that we wear to church leading up to the conference (and at the conference) to lead others to attend. I often find myself wearing it throughout the year. It helps to remind me (like the notes on my mirror) to wear love. God wants me to wear his love, not just 2 days a year, but all year long. I'm wearing my t-shirt today...

layered over a white long-sleeve t-shirt

...and here I am last week wearing another t-shirt to inspire me to LOVE! Find inspiration where you can, you can find cute,  tasteful (be careful, you don't want to send the wrong message!) t-shirts everywhere that not only send others a great message, but can inspire you throughout your day!
"Love Pink" t-shirt- layered over a long-sleeved black t-shirt

Monday, January 12, 2015

Worry, why do I let myself worry...?

Matthew 6:34
"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.  Each day has enough trouble of it's own."

Thank you, Lord, for this new day.  I am worried...the Bible clearly tells me not to. Alas, I am but human and I find myself worrying about, well, pretty much everything!  It is also clearly a sin to waste my time worrying. God tells me in Matthew 6, that I shouldn't worry about my life, what I eat, my body or, what I wear (what?!).  Instead, we are to "seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness". Friends, my prayer for you this new day is that you worry less, and seek more. Amen.

Today, in Maryland, it is cold and rainy. My husband had to drive to work again this morning in less than favorable driving conditions. Also, Frankie (my 2 yr old) had a slight fever all weekend, back to the doctor we go.  And, we are getting ready to leave for Disney World. No worries! Because the children are home from school again today,due to the weather, I had some extra time this morning. I was able to use a cute gift Emily bought for Mia & Bella ( & me too!) for Christmas.

"jamberry" nail wraps - puppy love (on ring finger)

Frankie and I are also sporting cute outfits inspired by one of our favorite movies, "Frozen". You don't have to worry about carrying this snowflake theme into the winter months. Have a great Monday!

black, red and white snowflake top and red leggings- "Kohl's"

navy and red snowflake top- "Talbots"
shimmery gold snowflake earrings- "The Pink Silhouette"

Friday, January 9, 2015

Purple Friday, Round 2

Acts 16:14
"One of those listening was a woman from the city of Thyatira named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth. She was a worshiper of God.  The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul's message."

Lydia would have definitely lived in Maryland if she would have been alive today. It's a veritable sea of purple out here. The Ravens beat the Steelers last Saturday night in their first play-off game and they are off to Gilette Stadium in MA. to play the Patriots tomorrow. Go Ravens!

I feel a connection to Lydia (not just because of the purple!). I feel her conversion story is similar to mine. She already had a knowledge and understanding of God,  she was a "righteous gentile". After she heard Paul she was so moved "she and the members of her household were baptized". That is how God is, putting people in your life when you need them, speaking His truth into our open hearts. Thank you, Lord for the story of Lydia, opening our hearts to your word and your gift of everlasting life.

Today, of course, I'm dressed in purple. But the photo is a blast from a Christmas past. This picture is of most of my children (Charlotte and Frankie are missing) and me. GO RAVENS!!

Thursday, January 8, 2015

I'm a lumberjack and I'm OK...

1 John 5:11
"And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son."

I have had 3 boys; sons. My first born son is, Ben.  I thought he would be my last child. He was/is such a blessing. He endured countless hours of dress-up with his big sisters (Charlotte used to call him Pup-Pup!). He started to speak a little later than the girls, but when he started he definitely excelled. I don't think he's stopped yet. Two weeks after Ben turned 6, I had my second son, Dominic. Ben told me he wanted a brother and I was so thrilled to be able to give him one.  Ben, however, has told me in every subsequent pregnancy that he only wants a little sister. He had a difficult adjustment to Dominic. Fortunately, they love each other very much now.

Sadly, my third son, Angelo, never took a breath. He died in my womb at 16 weeks of pregnancy. Jim and I were devastated. Although, we had not planned on having any more children, God had a different plan for us. I took for granted that everything would be fine, I had had 6 healthy, happy children. We prepared for our child to be born, as we had before. I thought too, even though I was 44 years old, that I was probably the most healthy I had ever been.  I was in great shape, I was running, eating healthier than I had ever before and was determined to have a fit, healthy pregnancy. After our loss, I didn't even want to think about having another child. I was done, surely God was telling me I was too old to have a healthy baby. After months of prayer we faithfully put our trust in God and decided if we were meant to have another child, we would. Two days after my 46th birthday, our daughter, Frankie was born. She is a healthy, happy 2 year old, and we are all so blessed.

Each one of my children has been a blessing, each one has taught me a new and wonderful truth about life, about marriage, about family and about faith. Here's to my little lumberjacks (and princesses, too) !

Today I thought I looked like a lumberjack. It reminded me of my son Ben and his love for Monty Python.
Here's my outfit today...

new flannel top from "Talbots", navy fleece lined leggings from "The Pink Silhouette"

 and, here's a picture of Frankie from the day she was born. She informed me yesterday that she is a princess. I have to agree!

gift from God!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015


Matthew 5:16
"In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven."

One of the first songs my oldest daughter, Emily, learned was "This little light of mine". It was so precious to watch her standing as big and tall as she could to show me all of her hand gestures and vocal talents, belting out the familiar tune. "LET IT SHINE, LET IT SHINE, LET IT SHIIIINNNNEEE!!!". To this day Emily likes to be the center of attention, as she is an up and coming actress (she has a beautiful voice, too!). We are all given gifts that we are to use to glorify the Father. If you're not sure what specific gift you have, I encourage you to seek it. Ask your pastor, a good friend, and pray about it. You don't have to be in the spotlight to "Let it shine" but "let it shine, let it shine, let it shine" my friends!

While I'm sure that Jesus wasn't giving make-up tips on the Sermon on the Mount (yeah that's right, I'm going there!) using a little sparkle and shine to enhance our God given beauty isn't a bad thing. On a daily basis, I don't tend to wear a lot of make-up. If I do wear any, I don't generally use foundation. I use some concealer, a little blush or bronzer (depending on the time of year), and eye make-up. I always use an eye pencil and mascara. I'm fortunate that my daughter, Charlotte (she's 22 and is attending Univ. of MD) is a make-up aficionado! She helps keep me current. Here is a photo of the items that I am currently using.

If you're not sure about what make-up to use for you, ask a friend that you have admired, or go to a make-up counter in a department store for some advice. Usually you can get some tips for free. However, beware at the department store, they are trying to sell their products ( and that is their job, it's ok), so hold tight to your purse strings. While you certainly could purchase what they have, I have always found some great alternatives in my local drug or discount store (the elf concealer I picked up at Target for $1!).  I hope you find your "look" and take a moment or two today to Shine!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


Matthew 28: 5
"The angel said to the women, 'Do not be afraid, for I know that you are looking for Jesus...' "

I'm not afraid of a little snow, I worry that my husband has to drive over an hour to work in it, and I  have to admit, that I'm not looking forward to clearing it off of the sidewalks, cars, etc... I also have to admit that I'm not as excited as I could/should be that my children will be home ALL day long with me.

What am I afraid of? Well, that's a tough one. The Bible tells me over 100 times (in some form or another) not to fear. I have to say that is definitely comforting, and something I can reflect on. However, in those moments of panic or fear that I have been faced with in my life, not as easy to recall. What I can rely on, even though I have those moments, is that God is constant, He will not fail me. Even if the outcome isn't what I pray for, He has a plan that we cannot begin to even understand, but God in his infinite wisdom and mercy reminds us in Romans 8:28 " And we know that in all things, God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.". Thank you, Lord, for your words of comfort and hope. Now, about all this worrying....!

Here's a little something we should all husband was on Facebook last night and this little picture popped up...

Monogrammed Bathing Suit Bandeau Tube Top

Why am I afraid of this image? God love him, my husband said he would love to see me in this cute bathing suit!?! (Ba ha ha!) I have given birth 8 times, I have nursed 7 children, not so sure any of us are ready to see me in this little ditty. But I do love that he doesn't see this beautiful model, but me! For those of you that are ready to be seen in this adorable bathing suit, I found it on and they are having a flash sale. I love MarleyLilly because they have a lot of really nice monogrammed items from beach towels to baseball hats. Monograms are definitely hot again (unlike me in this bathing suit!). If you can pick up something with a monogram on it, you've got style! If you're like me, or at least as old as I am, you may even have one hidden in the depths of your jewelry box or in the back of your closet. Clean it up, shake off the dust and put it on.  Fear not, you're back in style!!

Monday, January 5, 2015

Back to school, for 10 days!

Romans 5: 8
"But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

Thank you Pastor Buddy for the Bible verse. "Change someone's life. Tell them about Jesus!".  I pray that you know Jesus today, and if you do...pass Him on!

Today I put my children back on  their respective school buses, most of them with their lunches (Bella's is still in the refrigerator!). Tomorrow we'll do better. I did, however, remember to send all of the notes in with them from 2 bouts of the flu and......ta ta dum...our family trip to Disney World!!! That's right people, I'm going to Disney World! Thanks to my wonderful parents; Dominic, Mia and Bella are flying to Disney with my parents and their cousins.  Jim, Frankie and I will be driving down and meeting them for the week. My brother and his beautiful wife are driving down as well. We are so excited!!

I was trying to take a picture yesterday of my super cute outfit for church (I'll do better with that tomorrow, too), but I haven't quite mastered that. My friend and I take turns with the middle school ministry during the service, so I try to keep it trendy and fun (comfortable and modest, too!). Yesterday, I wore my new Talbots flannel shirt and my Target "boyfriend" jeans. I purchased them both on sale which makes them even better. It was a fun day because not only did we stop and get "Paradise Donuts"  but we played "King of Tokyo", who says church isn't fun!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

So, speaking of elephants...

Galations 6: 14
"May I never boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, through which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world"

I love that I am challenged everyday in my faith by family, friends and even "virtual" friends. Thank you Kasey Van Norman for the #Galations challenge. I pray that everyday we continue to encourage each other in growth and learning.

Now about those elephants... ever since I was a little girl, my grandmother, Ma-naw, had a love for elephants. I didn't always share that love, but as an adult I appreciate the special memories that just the sight of an elephant brings to me. This year I'm in luck, there are elephants everywhere! I wanted to share a few of my favorites with you. You don't have to spend a lot of money to enjoy this trend. I spent $5 on the earrings at a local Amish market and $13.73 including tax for my cute scarf at one of my favorite local boutiques "The Pink Silhouette".  I also purchased my great "Lilly" planner there as well.

"I meant what I said, and I said what I meant. An elephant's faithful, one hundred per cent!" 
Dr. Seuss- "Horton Hears a Who!"

Friday, January 2, 2015

Purple Friday...good hair, not bad!

Proverbs 17:22
"A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones"

Happy Purple Friday Baltimore!

The Ravens are in the play-offs tomorrow and we are celebrating today gettin' our purple on! I have to say that I am probably the biggest Ravens fan in the house, most of the children don't care, except for Dominic, but unless he's playing football he'd rather be doing something other than watching football. My husband grew up in Redskins territory, but he's not a super fan either, thank goodness. I'm blessed that they support me (most of the time!).

I actually had a free moment last night to "touch-up" my hair. Yeah, baby! I don't get to the salon very often so I rely on a great product called "root touch-up" by Clairol. I love it. I feel a good hair day coming on!! Doesn't get much better than that (it's a girl thing).

This year I feel God leading me to focus on joy. Not that I don't have joy in my life already, but I want to reflect the joy the Lord has put in my heart. I so often get bogged down with worry and just plain busyness, that I forget the joy. " I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart. Down in my heart to stay!" Lord, help me to reflect that joy to others today and everyday. Amen.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy NEW Year!

Lamentations 3:23
 "They are NEW every morning; great is your faithfulness"

Lord, thank you that I am new today! Happy New Year!
I have been reading other blogs from other young, fun, Christian women, and I have been wanting to start one of my own. Not that I'm young, and ask my children, sometimes not so fun! But I am a Christian woman with things to share. I pray that I am a blessing to someone, either with a smile or a great tip! Have fun reading about my crazy big family and their crazy mom, who's trying something NEW!!