Friday, December 19, 2008

What Chrismas Means To Me

Well it is December 20Th, only 5 more days until Christmas, or as the retailers would put it;
"Only 4 shopping days left until Christmas!"
Is that really what we want Christmas to mean? Is that the memory we want our children to have when they are grown?
Christmas....We all know what the true meaning of Christmas is suppose to be, and is; The supposed date for the birth of our beloved Saviour, Jesus Christ. That is what it should be and it is in my heart of heart's, but Christmas has become so many more things to us too.
Christmas is the time when we show our loved ones how much we care, a time to spend special time with family and friend's, to eat special goodies that are made with love and care.

So what has happened to what Christmas is supposed to be? We tell our children what they are supposed to feel about Christmas, that it is better to give than receive. Then we turn around and spend hundred's, sometimes thousand's of dollars on toy's and electronics that they will play with for a week and throw in a corner and forget. In the mean time, children all over the world go to bed hungry at night.
Oh I am not judging fr I am just as guilty as anyone else. I am like every other parent, I want my children to have the latest gadgets and gizmo's, I want them to be happy and "Love me", cause I am the coolest thing since marshmallows, when I buy them what they want, or what they think they want.
So I am asking myself this early morning; "what does Christmas mean to me?" Not what everyone tells me it is suppose to mean, not what I tell my children it is supposed to mean, but what does Christmas mean, in my heart of hearts?
Christmas, is a song that sings of a future, where all are equal, no one lacks food, or clothing, there are no tears from the loss of a loved one to cancer, or aids. It is the promise of a future for our children that is filled with love and forgiveness for our brothers and sisters that are bound to us by this thing called humanity. Christmas to me is hoping there will be no more war, but knowing there will be, so the hope turns to peace, so that our men and women serving in the Middle East will be able to come home quickly and be with their families, that the escalating war in Afghanistan will be stopped, so no more innocent lives will be lost.
Most of all Christmas to me is the joy of seeing a family together. The smile on my child's face, when she sees the Christmas lights lit on all the houses and trees, in that smile of a seven year old is pure innocence, it can't be bought, sold or traded, and it is all mine for a few more years.
So in this season of giving and sharing, think of the things that really matter to you. Not what can be bought in a store, not money, or even gold. Let our mind's go back to the innocence of when you were seven, think of the thrill you felt when you saw the light's, when you sat on Santa's lap, the first snow flakes of the year falling, your Mother and Dad's unconditional love.
Talk to my heart. What does Christmas really mean to you?

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Free $25.00 Shopping For You At Bidz

Hi all I got this code from a freebie site that I visit, and wanted to pass it along to you. I love this site, especially at Christmas and Birthdays. You can get jerwerly at 1/3 the price or even less sometimes. It is all good quality, I order for my children and family. Hope this helps save you some money during the Christmas shopping season. Here is my friend and mentor Anjie's link for Bidz.

And here is the code to use for your $25.00 shopping money, just put the code in at checkout.
Use code SCARY25
Valid 10/30 - 11/2
Talk To My Heart, Let me know what yyou bought with your free $25.00, and who it was for. I just love what I call "Found Money".

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Free Cell Phones and Service for Low Income Families

Thanks so much to our friend Marie over at she found this wonderful program to help low income families.

SafeLink Wireless is a government supported program
that provides a free cell phone and airtime each
month for income-eligible customers.

I sincerely hope that some of you can use this program and that it will be a blessing for someone. Things are so hard these days, even for two income families, and I know that some can't even afford home phone service, so this is a great program.
Talk To My Heart, let me know if you or someone you know cold benefit from this program, or if you know of similar things being offered, and I will publish your thoughts and suggestions here.

Remember Halloween is Friday, look out for the ghosties and goblins!

Sunday, October 26, 2008

New Use For Vicks Vapor Rub

I said in the title this is a new use for Vicks, maybe I should rephrase that. It is an old use, but done in a different way.

I have used Vicks every since I was a child. It was the cure all for stuffy noses and hacking coughs for my parents. My parents couldn't take us to the doctor every time we had a cold, as a matter of fact we had to be about dead before we went. If we got a cold out came the Vicks, it was rubbed on our chests, and on the upper part of our lip, right under our nostrils.

Now it did a terrific job of opening my sinuses, but have mercy it felt like it was gonna burn my lip off some times, because of the Mentholatum. By the time it stopped stinging, you were either "cured or killed," as they say.

Well now someone has come up with a way to get the benefits without all the fuss and muss, so next time I have a cold I will be trying this. Hope you enjoy, and please if you give it a try, Talk To My Heart, let me know how it works for you and your family.


During a lecture on Essential Oils, they told us how the foot soles can

absorb oils. Their example: Put garlic on your feet and within 20 minutes

you can 'taste' it.

Some of us have used Vicks Vapor rub for years for everything from chapped

lips to sore toes and many body parts in between. But I've never heard of

this. And don't laugh, it works 100% of the time, although the scientists

who discovered it aren't sure why. To stop night time coughing in a child

(or adult as we found out personally), put Vicks Vapor rub generously on the

bottom of the feet at bedtime, then cover with socks. Even persistent,

heavy, deep coughing will stop in about 5 minutes and stay stopped for many,

many hours of relief. Works 100% of the time and is more effective in

children than even very strong prescription cough medicines. In addition it

is extremely soothing and comforting and they will sleep soundly.

Just happened to tune in A.M. Radio and picked up this guy talking about why

cough medicines in kids often do more harm than good, due to the chemical

makeup of these strong drugs so, I listened. It was a surprise finding and

found to be more effective than prescribed medicines for children at

bedtime, in addition to have a soothing and calming effect on sick children

who then went on to sleep soundly.

My wife tried it on herself when she had a very deep constant and persistent

cough a few weeks ago and it worked 100%! She said that it felt like a warm

blanket had enveloped her, coughing stopped in a few minutes and believe me,

this was a deep, ( incredibly annoying!) every few seconds uncontrollable

cough, and she slept cough-free for hours every night that she used it.

If you have grandchildren, pass this on. If you end up sick, try it yourself

and you will be absolutely amazed at how it works.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Teaching Our Children To Be Civic Minded Citizens

It is almost time for the 2008 Presidential Election. I don't think I have ever missed voting in an election since I turned 18. They had just changed the law, to allow an 18 year old to vote, (for you youngsters, it used to be 21). I was so proud the first time I stepped into a polling place, I felt like I was grown and finally 100% American. You might say, "but you were born in America." Yes I was, but there was just something about voting that first time that confirmed it in my heart and mind, my chest was bursting with pride.

I don't know if that is the feeling everyone gets when they vote, but that feeling has never left me. Every time I vote it reaffirms the fact I, Marilyn Oliver am an American.
My oldest adopted child just turned 18 in October. I started telling her the importance of voting last year, she has only been with us going on 3 years, or she would have heard my spiel all her life.
Anyway I didn't wait for her to register to vote, I registered her online myself, cause she is quite a procrastinator. She was thrilled though when she got her Voter registration card in the mail about a month ago.
I don't stop there, when I went to vote in the primaries, I lugged all four of my girl's with me, took them all into the voting booth, so they could see what the process was. The people at our voting precinct didn't know quite what to think when I walked in and told them I would be taking the girl's in with me, but they were troopers and when we got done, they were each given an I voted today sticker, they all wore them out with pride in their eyes.

If you haven't figured it out by now, I am very patriotic. I still get a tear in my eye when the National Anthem is played, and we say the Pledge Of Allegiance to our flag. Nothing makes me angrier than to hear someone put down this great country of ours. I am one of those people who feel like if you don't love our country, then please go find somewhere you can be happy. We have so much freedom, and opportunities in this country, I don't think you will find that anywhere else in the world, we are blessed beyond what we deserve sometimes. We all take what we have for granted, and it seems the only time we think about it is when we see pictures of starving children in other countries, or when a freedom that affects us is going to be taken away. Friends that is why you should vote. If the things you believe in are there for you now, and someone who doesn't share those same beliefs is voted into office, then chances are what you hold near and dear may be gone, if that person has enough influence.

OK off my soap box and back to the kids. As I said I start brainwashing my kids to be patriots from the time they are old enough to listen. I don't take toddlers with me to vote, they can be distracting, but I do let them know Mommy is going to vote, and try to explain what that is. I usually start taking them with me to the polls at 4 or 5, and while they don't understand all that is going on they do know we are doing something very important. When I was in school we were taught everyday how important being an American was, and how important our civic duties to this country are. Kids today don't get that in school, it might offend someone else belief system. (Refer back to how I feel about if you don't love it leave it.)

What are these civic duties that we should be teaching our children? Well of course voting, jury duty, serving our country with military duty when called upon. Those are just some of the things considered civic duty, but I would also throw in some others here, how about the battered woman or child? Report the abuser. Did you see someone steal from the store you are shopping in? Report to the management. Civic duty means being responsible, not just for yourself, but for your fellow man.

Please teach your children to be good responsible citizens, they are our future, if we don't guide and lead them in the right direction, who will? I received a good article in my email the other day that also kind of goes along with my blog today. It was from Good Housekeeping, and I am including a link here for you to read it if you chose.

I was listening to the news today and found out one of the candidates will be in our town this Saturday. This is the first time that a Presidential candidate has been right here in my town that I can remember, if any were before, I was too young, or working and didn't know. I am not going to say which candidate, because my party preferences should not affect how someone else views this blog. To me it doesn't matter what party you are as long as you vote. Anyway, as soon as I heard about the rally I called to find out if there were any tickets left, they said no, but they were expecting some more in if I could stop by later. Well by the time I could get there they were all gone again, I was so disappointed, I told the lady how much I wanted to be able to take my children, and how important I felt it was for them to learn early. She said well, maybe another location had some, and she called for me, they did have some left, but only a few, if I could get there they were mine, but they could not hold them. I headed out crossing my fingers they would still have seven when I arrived. I stopped to get gas a couple of miles up the road, and my cell phone rang, it was the lady I had just talked to, I had given her my number just in case the other location was out, and they by chance got some more in. She said we have 750 tickets on the way here, if you can come back here in about an hour, I will put seven aside for you. I was elated. I headed back and stopped to pick up a few things from the store to defray my wait. When I go back to the head quarters the tickets still had not gotten there, the lady was gone I had spoken to, but another lady remembered me, and motioned me to come back and have a seat she said they will be here in about 15 minutes. There were a few other people waiting, and the crowd was slowly building. When the man walked in with the tickets, I was told I could only have four, well I knew it was one of those fight or flight moment's. I said to them, look I am not trying to be ugly, but I was called back here by the other lady and was promised there would be seven tickets waiting for me, as I have five children as well as myself and my husband. The other lady said, "she promised you seven?" I said yes when she called, she said "OK give her seven, but after that only four per person." See perseverance pays, not only did I get seven tickets, the T-shirts that they didn't think would come in until the next morning arrived at the same time, so now my husband and I have white ones to wear, and my daughter who thinks pink is the only color in the world has one in pink, oh was she so happy! "Mom, can my boy friend come?" I explained I could only get the seven tickets but if he wanted he could check to see if they had any more tickets. Well as luck would have it my 14 year old has a best friend who he has not seen in months, due to visitation with his father. He called and begged for my son to be able to come for the weekend, that freed up a ticket for her boyfriend, so that will make it even more special for her. He is 18 also, I hope he registered to vote, if not he will get Momma Marilyn's civic lesson on Saturday.

Well everyone Talk To My Heart, how do you feel about voting, and civic duties in general? Give a comment and let me know.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Mom, What's In my Lunch Box?

I have always paid for my children to get school lunch, or the last few years I have been one of "those moms ", my children have qualified for free or reduced lunch. This year we didn't qualify anymore, not because we had a huge increase in pay, but just a few dollars. Well with gas going up, the cost of food at the grocery stores and every thing else you can think of, I couldn't see paying $3.50 and up for lunch everyday for 5 children, we were looking at About $88.00 a week just for lunch , that didn't include breakfast. I told my children we just could not do that, and they would be taking their lunch from home.
The first week was fun, they had new lunch boxes, Hannah Montana, High School Musical, and just a plain red and black for my 14 year old son, PLEASE! The next hurdle was what to get them to drink? I wanted something low in sugar, but with some kind of nutritional value, none of them really ever liked getting milk at lunch. Well a friend of mine told me about the Sugar free Hawaiian Punch Singles To Go. 5 calories per serving, 5 mg of sodium, 1 g of carbs, and best of all 100% of the RDA of vitamin C, woohoo. I found them in 5 flavors and they come 8 servings to a box, but those sticks as I call them make 16.9 fluid ozs, my kids lunch bottles are 8oz, so we actually get 16 servings. Best of all I bought them at Walgreens for $1.00 a box, can you say 6 cent per serving? The only way to beat that would be having coupons, but alas I couldn't find any.
Now back to my lunch delimena, what's that you say? You didn't say anything about a delimena. Well let me tell you folks, I have found out it is hard to find something for lunch that will please all 5 kids, 5 days a week. They got tired of bologna, turkey, and ham real quickly. I was able to supplement my middle and high schoolers boxes with hot pockets, and the smaller microwavable entrees, like beef and cheese, stroganoff, etc. but no such luck with my elementary schoolers, they aren't allowed to use the microwave. Heck I can't even give the their favorite, peanut butter and jelly, because of the chance that some children may have nut allergies. I understand this to a point, but why can't my child just be sat away from the child with allergies. I am lactoise intolerent but I still buy milk. Oh well, no use fighting that battle here.
I've tried reading the articles about keeping lunches interesting, well that might just work, if you have all day to do nothing but stay in the kitchen and cut out the cutsie little designs, and cut the veggies into exotic shapes, I can do that, "NOT"!
I guess I am going to have to check on the price of K-Rations, LOL, rub them or shake, I forget which, and they self heat. Now that would be nice, and they couldn't taste any worse than my kids say the cafeteria food does. Can they?
So what's a mom to do? When and if I figure it out, I promise to do an update to this Blog, in the meantime.....Talk To MY Heart, tell me what you do for your kid's lunches at school. Who knows maybe someone out there has the answer, I sure could use it before my kid's go on lunch strike, then I'll be "one of those moms who don't feed their kids"

Pushing The Future

My friend and mentor Anjie Henley at gave us a link to day to an awesome blog and video that could potentially save us all a bunch of money in our gas tanks. I have heard all of our political parties ideas about new energy sources. They have talked about drilling, solar energy, clean coal, but the thing I haven't heard is what can help us now? Everything they are talking about is 7 or more years down the road, and I personally can not survive another 7 years with these kinds of Gas prices, and everything else going up. I was so impressed with this technology I want to know more and quickly. You can view the video here, and find out more, I personally think it is brilliant and I am proud to say this awesome invention was dreamed up by one of our Freelancebyu members, spouses, so it's kind of all in the family.

After you have a chance to view come on back and Talk to my heart, let me know what you think about this new invention.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Kid's Eat Free

How are you all doing this wonderful Friday/Saturday? First I want to say my prayers are with the people of Texas, and other areas being affected by Ike at this time, please stay safe and evacuate.

Now, I wanted to share a wonderful site that I just found, it is awesome and will really help those of us who have children under 10, and those of us with large families, like our 5 children. So check it out here ....

Here is an excerpt from their home.
80% of Kid's Eat Free specials are only advertised by Word of Mouth! If you know of a Kid's Eat Free special not listed here, please let us know so we can add them to our site.

Talk to my heart, let me know how you like this goodie, I love it, anything to help defray the cost of gas right now.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

School Is In, I Am Out!

Ok, so it seems like forever and a day, but I am finally back. A my title says school has finally started back, but I am so out of it from running myself ragged, trying to get all five of my ankle biters back to school.
This year seemed much harder than previous years for me. For one thing there was much more paperwork this year. I began filling it out when the first two got home at two pm, on the first day. I finished at five am the next morning. Now mind you, that was in between helping with homework, yes you read right homework the first day! Cooking dinner, picking up the 14 year old from football practice, going to try and find the last of the school supplies for each class. I had all the basics, but you know each teacher has their own list too. Marble notebooks are my enemy this year. Every store in my area was sold out, and now two weeks later, I finally found five at my local Foodlion. My children fought over those precious five last night. Seems the teachers are jumping onto the children for not having them, Momma Bear is ready to jump the teachers eeerrrrgggg!
So how has your school year started? I can't just say, how has your child's school year started, because we are just as much a part of the school as our children now, it is expected. It is called shared responsibility here, I call it the teachers not wanting to deal myself. I can count on my fingers the number of times my parents ever went to our schools. I am not saying that was a good thing, but they both worked full time jobs, and just dealing with life was sometimes too much for them to handle. Now most of us work full time jobs, but we are expected to work after those full time jobs with our kids and the schools. What if we expected the teachers to go to work for us, and teach our children? Think they would still expect so much from us then?
I am all for being involved in my children's lives, in and out of school. I have always helped with homework, attended school functions, I am not so much into PTO, but I do pay my dues. That is not enough anymore, now the kids bring home more homework than they do schoolwork in school. Lord help you if your child doesn't have a computer at home! That is paramount to child abuse! We can't bake cupcakes for the class anymore, now everything has to be store bought. Have you watched the specials about how dirty restaurants, and grocery stores are? They are worried about baking at home, to me that is a joke.
I really didn't intend for this blog to be a rant today, I was just going to catch up on what has been going on the past few weeks, well the best laid plans and all that rot! I do hope everyone has gotten settled in, and that you all survived the summer with few scratches.
Well I am out of here until the next time, hopefully it won't be so long, now that I have all this free time between, between school work, football games, yadda, yadda.........HELP!
Talk to my heart, let me know how you feel about what the schools expect from parents nowadays.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Program for 6th to 9th Graders

I wanted to share this item with my readers. As a parent of 2 teens, and 2 tweens, I feel your pain. How do we keep our children out of trouble, teach them how to make the right decisions? Well when you find out please let me know. I use every resource I can find, and it takes all of them and then some in todays society. I ordered one of these for my children, so we will all find out together how effective the program is. I promise to come back and let you know what I think, if you promise to Talk To My Heart, and let me know what you think about the program, and how your children reacted to it. So TTYL on this one.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

New club for Girls and Moms

I was very impressed with a new club that will be starting up on September 2nd. I grew up with Precious Moments figurines, and knick nacs, calendars etc. Well now they have a club created just for us girls, and best of all it helps Moms and their Daughters interact, so that we can teach our girls good moral values. How cool is that? You can preregister and the first 2000, may get a chance for some freebies. Here is the information, I hope you are as impressed with this as I am. Talk To My Heart, and tell me what you think after you check it out. I preregistered all my young ladies, and can't wait until September 2nd!

Thank you for your interest in the Precious Girls ClubTM from Precious Moments®!
The Precious Girls Club website and companion book series offers a world of joy
and goodness created for precious little girls! The series reinforces the values you
teach in your own home and most importantly, encourages little girls to be little

If you qualify for the giveaway, we will send you two sample copies of the first

book in the series, A Little Bit of Faith. In the meantime, be sure to check out

the companion website at The site is open for

pre-registration now, and the full site launches on September 2nd. And since

your fellow moms are always looking for great new books and toys for their families,

be sure to share the Precious Girls Club with other moms - we're sure they'll thank

you for the tip!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Awesome contest for you

My friend and mentor has a great contest running right now on her blog, and it's ezypeezey to enter and win. All of us are using more coupons now to help save some nickels and dimes in todays economy, and this contest will make those coupon savings easier than ever. I hope I win one!
Heres what ya have to do.........

  • all you have to do is comment on this post on my blog for ONE ENTRY!



  • Holds up to 150 coupons
  • Velcro latch quickly attaches to shopping cart
  • Pre-printed category tabs make organizing coupons easy
  • Best selling coupon organizer on the market today
  • Size: 4 3/4"tall x 7 1/2"wide x 1/2"deep

This Coupon Organizer is the perfect way to hold and organize your coupons in one convenient place. Our coupon organizer will pay for itself in just a few trips to the grocery store because you will easily be able to see the coupons you have. The coupon holder features a black vinyl case with clear pockets that can hold up to 150 coupons in 12 compartments. The coupon organizer also features 24 tabs to help you stay organized, and it attaches to the shopping cart for easy use


  • if you have a blog and make a post about this contest or my site..... you can also send me the link to your post (via comment here) and you will get 2nd entry! DONT HAVE A BLOG? MAKE ONE! ITS FREE HERE ON BLOGGER! HAVE 2 BLOGS? POST ON BOTH!

  • ADDITIONAL ENTRIES can be made by Posting about this contest or my blog or site on another site / forum/blog and post the link on my blog, YEP another entry!
LAST BUT NOT LEAST, add a link to your EBAY ABOUT ME PAGE or YOUR MYSPACE / FACEBOOK ETC and you can get another entry!
Living Lavishly For Less
www.freelancebyu. com

As Anjie would say, "Go Get Em"

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

And Six Makes Eleven

As you can see it has been a while between updates, but I have a very good excuse. As you all know I have five children at home, well the past 3 weeks not only have I had my five, but six of my Grand Children, in and out, then a friend of my oldest April. She was with us for 2 weeks, right before the Grands got here. Now for some reason that I just can't understand, I haven't had time to update the blog, (scratches head)?

I love having the Grand kids, last year we had them for two weeks, then they went home for two weeks and came back a week, so I think they love coming to Grandmommy and Grandaddys too. We couldn't do much with them this year, you know the deal with stacation, but we still had a good time. They camped in the yard, we roasted marshmallows 2 or 3 times, ate watermelon, stayed up way past bedtime, and got caught up on all the hugs and kisses we had missed since they were here last. On Friday it was the 10 yr olds Birthday, so we had a Birthday celebration for all 3 of the ones here from out of town, since we didn't get to help them celebrate when their Birthdays came around. I baked 72 cup cakes, then spelled their initials with them, and decorated with Barbie colors and decorations, we didn't need to invite anyone, we had ten here then, and then Analise the Grand born in November, and her Mommy came, to pick up Alyssa and Andrew, the two Grands who live locally. So we had our own party going.

The three from out of town left Saturday, I sure am missing them already. The house feels empty after having so many here. Now it is just me and Hubby, and four of ours, April went home with my DIL who is local. Tomorrow the other four will leave for their Biological Aunts and Uncles house until Saturday, because hubby has a doctors consultation out of town on Wednesday. We may be gone a few days if they decide to go ahead and do something about his arteries. It is supposed to only be a consultation, but he has had problems this past week, so I think they may want to go ahead and do something while they have him.

The rest of my upcoming weeks will be filled with physicals, eye appointments, dental appointments, etc. getting the kids ready to go back to school. All the appointments have been made, so we are set in that respect, with five I have to start early. You know that is a rant I have too. The doctors never want to set all my kids up for the same day on appointments. You would think with gas prices the way they are, they would be a bit more understanding and lenient, but no, those are the rules, tow from the same family in a day. Oh well I guess what doesn't kill us makes us stronger, I should be Wonder Woman by now. Let me see if I can pull up some pictures for you of our antics the past few weeks. Hope I can.....

Monday, July 21, 2008

Sweet Memories

I wrote this in response to a discussion on My Lot, which is a discussion site I belong to, as I wrote it I decided I wanted to share my childhood memories here with you. I hope you enjoy them, and then Talk To My Heart and tell me your childhood memories, I would love to read them.

Oh the memories you brought back, I'm not much younger than you at 51, my memories are gas at 24 cent, bread 25 cent a loaf, 7 cent sodas. I was in 2nd grade in school when Kennedy was killed, we were all terrified, we thought the world had ended. I remember the days and days of watching all the processions on TV, how sad we all felt. I too remember the first man on the moon, "One small step for Man, One Large step for man kind". I remember The pledge of Allegiance being said in school and the pride I felt each time I put my hand to my heart. I remember prayer in school, and the peace it gave me at the start of each day. I didn't worry about being shot in school, or stabbed, the worst thing that happened in my schools were fist fights, then the next day they were friends again.We played outside like you, we made play houses out of leaves, sectioning each room, using stumps and crates for our furniture. Since we were poor and couldn't afford balls and bats, we played ball with sticks and large rocks, had a good shiner once when I missed the "Ball". I remember laying on the grass and watching for the first star to appear so I could make my wish. Catching lightning bugs in a jar, eating honeysuckle the juice so sweet. Those were the best times ever, and the worst, but they sure do make sweet memories.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Got Healthy Kid's, Thank God , Cause Some Aren't So Lucky

I don't normally Plagiarize but in this case I don't think my friend Lahaia will mind. Check out what Lahia wrote in her blog, think about what you would do if it were your child, then do what your heart leads you to. Now I realize some people can't afford to donate cash right now, neither can I, but there is something else I can provide, that is my prayers for these children and their families. Here is a copy from Lahias blog

I usually don't do this but, these children are good friends with my children
I have been knowing their parents since we were all children ourselves.
I'm asking if you wouldn't mind adding this to your blogs as well.
Here is a copy from my blog...
This benfits children who suffer with cancer in our own area...
Thanks Ladies for any help on this topic...

American Cancer Society Relay For Life

Sebastian & Sloan Vegas are good friends with my children (The Moon Dogs),
they are raising money for
American Cancer Society Relay For Life
in our town. We are asking if you would please
take time to donate a dollar amount to help the children who have cancer
for better treatment to heal & get well.

Link below is directed to Sebastian's page
You can donate Online OR print out a forum & mail in your check.
The last day for collecting money is

by 4:00pm Central Time on Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Relay For Life Link

Thank You All So Very Much!!
Any Dollar Amount Is Much Appreciated!!!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

When Life Hands You A Lemon, Make Lemonade (Gods Way)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

When Life Hands You A Lemon, Make Lemonade
(God's Way)

If you read my blog about what can go wrong, you know that the past few weeks weren't going very well for the Oliver household.

I want to regress a bit; we bought our home in February of 2007, the house is perfect for my large family. We were living in a 3 bedroom double wide, small bed rooms at that. All 4 of my girls were in one bedroom, in bunk beds and were crunched together with no space of their own. I hated it, but at the time we had no choice.

When we decided to try and buy, everything was so expensive, and the ones we felt we could afford were no better than what we were renting. My friend Claudia had called me a few months before we moved and told me about this house. Because of financial problems when I had to leave my job and apply for disability, our credit was terrible. We had lost our home, car and just about everything, waiting for the government to approve me for disability, it took five long hard years, and finally an attorney, before I got approved. So we knew what ever we got had to be owner financed, not so easy to come by.

Well I have never been known for being shy when it comes to something we need/want, so when Claudia called and told me her friends Mom had this house and described it, I thought OMGoodness, that would be perfect for us. Four bedroom, 3 full baths, LR, FR, Kitchen, Play room, almost two acres of land. A shop/garage combo, so I would have a place to put my hubby, when he gets in the dog house, LOL.

So I pick up the phone call the lady, and she says "No she can not finance, she needs someone who can get their own financing", well what could I say or do, I just prayed and kept on looking, at that time we didn't have an answer on my disability, and knew it would be a few more months. Now I am not one to procrastinate, I was still looking the whole time.

I was finally approved, so I doubled my efforts to find us a home that would have enough room. In January 07 I found a place that i thought might work, it only had 3 bedrooms, but was in our price range, and had a family room, that we could convert to a fourth bedroom, while it wasn't the ideal situation, I felt we could make it work. I actually told the man who had it that I thought we would take it, he said he would draw up the contract, and get back with me. We left feeling somewhat better, we had found a place that would work, with owner financing.

When we got home, I still had this nagging feeling like something wasn't right, (God). So I prayed, Lord, you know that if this is what you have for us, I will be perfectly happy, and make the most of it, but Father, you also know my heart, and you know that if I had my druthers, you know my heart is set on the other house, but now I am gonna praise you either way, and be happy with what you provide, I want your perfect will for us. I amened it and left it in His hands.

The next day I was sitting in my living room, thinking about the new house and what we could do to make the family room work for a fourth bedroom. My phone rings and I pick it up. It is the lady I had spoken with about this house. She said that she had had the house on the market for a year, and it still had not sold, she couldn't keep making two house payments and had decided she would work with me on owner financing, if I was still interested. Now isn't that just like God? I had never even seen the inside of the house, all I had was Claudia's description, but I knew it would be perfect. We made arrangements for us to come on out and look, so in the car we go.

The house was just what I had envisioned, and we agreed on the terms, while we were here looking. The next day I called the other guy and told him, we would not be getting his house, and explained to him why. He was very understanding. I started packing, and we were ready to move in on Feb. 1st.Other things happened along the way, like finding out we could actually get financed, but I won't go into all that.

As I said the house was perfect for us, when we moved in I started making the house a home for us, I decorated all the children's rooms just as they wanted them, you know with a rental you can't do that. The girls wanted Disney Princess, our 17 year old wanted "Pink", our son settled for Harley Davidson. They finally had their own spaces. There was one thing i wanted, but had to wait because we ran out of remodeling money, I wanted to do the floors in wood, or false wood, but I knew it would have to wait, and I was fine with that, all things come in good time.

That leads me up to the flood, and what happened yesterday. As you know we had a disaster, a couple of weeks ago when my hot water heater had busted lines, the house was flooded in the kitchen, living room, dining room, family room, and in hubby's closet and part of the carpet in our room. I had called the insurance company the day after the flood, I told them the floors were still seeping water, and I would prefer to wait until everything dried out to see what kind of damage we had. Well the vinyl in the kitchen started bowing up in the middle, the carpet is molding, the chair railing turning black, so I knew we were going to have to get the adjuster out here. I called Thursday of last week, they called me back today, and said they would have a company they work with to contact me. The man called me yesterday afternoon, and said from what I had described they would have to replace the vinyl, and carpet, and wanted to know if I wanted him to go ahead and bring carpet samples when he came. Well I decided to go for the gold, I said, "To be honest, if it would be possible I would prefer to have wood flooring, instead of going back with the Bur bur" He said Bur bur? I said yes, he said he had wood flooring, in stock, that was comparable, to the price of the Bur bur, and it would be no problem.

Now isn't that just like God? When the water heater was shooting water all over the house and me, all I could do was stand and cry, thinking what a disaster, and mess. God saw an opportunity to fulfill one of His children's dreams. Boy am I glad He is my Heavenly Father, and on my side. He always takes the LEMONS, in my life, and makes the sweetest lemonade.

Speaking of Lemonade I would like to share a goodie with you, that Anjie over at http//
Shared with me.

We're so confident you'll love True Lemon, True Lime and True Orange, we're giving away free samples!
Believe me when I say, you will love True Lemon! I use it in lemonade, tea, cooking, even sprinkle it on fresh fruits and veggies to keep them from turning brown like they do, especially bananas. Use True Lemon just like you would fresh lemon juice. I can't tell the difference, bet you can't either, and it won't cost you a penny to find out. Get your samples now.

Talk to my heart, tell me what Lemons in your life, have been turned into lemonade, I just love hearing about good things that happen in peoples lives.

When Life Hands You A Lemon, Make Lemonade

Sunday, July 6, 2008

A goodie for the kids

My children are collectors, stamps, stickers, post cards, what we call our treasures, (things people give them, or special awards, special BD or other cards), I started a treasure box when my first child was born, and have done it ever since, so when my children saw it, they decided to start boxes of their own. Anyway, back to the goodie........ When you click on this link, it will take you to this site. Just follow directions and send for the stamps. Very good Deal for just the cost of an envelope and stamp.

What I like most about hobbies like this is that you can work with your children and create lasting memories. Hobbies also teach your children patience, because they have to take their time if they want a nice project.

Hopefully I will come across some more freebies like this one before the summer ends, I know if your children are like mine, they are getting bored already, and I am scrambling to find free, or low cost things to keep them occupied. With my crew if I don't they will play Cowboys and Indians , and you know who will wind up the Indian!

So talk to my heart, tell me what hobbies your children are into, and any freebies you have found for them.

Friday, July 4, 2008

The Best Laid Plans

We have looked forward to this weekend for a month or more, I had looked up all the special July 4th events going on close to us, (remember the stacation article), I found some awesome buys on steaks at our local Food Lion Store,
Click link to find your local store and while you are at it sign up for their "Shoppers Companion Newsletter", It comes once a week to your in box, has coupons, whats on sale, weekly contest and much more, I love it. So I buy ground beef for burgers, NY Strip steaks, for half price, baking potatoes, salad mix and then start calling to invite my family for a good old fashioned cook out. Including my family of 7, we had 16 confirmed for the party, and then we were going to all make a caravan to the park for rides, games, bands and of course fire works. I prepped on Thursday, and had everything ready to go for the 4th.

Well when I called my sister morning of the 4th to make sure she if she was going to have any of her Grands coming I couldn't get her, called her hubby's cell only to find out her MS is acting up and she is in bed for the day, I should have know then that Murphy's Law was about to kick in.

Everyone was supposed to be here at 3, the first car pulled in at 1:45, just as I was getting naked to get a shower, I told the girls to entertain them until I could get the skunk off, and get dressed.
Meantime 3 more showed up at 2:10, my brother and his family, Larry came in to tell me they were here, "good I say, they can entertain each other", Larry was making a quick trip to the store to get the paper plates, I had forgotten. I had no sooner got out of the shower, Larry who was supposed to have already left for the store comes in and says your brother just left, OMG! Why, said he was sick, 3 more gone. I have food prepped for 16, now all of a sudden, I am 5 + with Sissy's Grands that are usually hooked to her hip like Siamese twins, she normally has at least two of them with her everywhere she goes.

I am thinking what am I going to do with this food, I send my daughter up to my neighbors, would she like to come eat with us, she is leaving for her daughters for a cook out, call my friend who has a family of five, she is going to the same cook out, as she is friends with neighbors daughter. By now I am wishing I had been invited to that cookout. I look out and my grill has not been set up before Larry left for store, so I go get the charcoal in, my 3 o'clock meal plan is gonna be an hour delayed, I take my burgers out to put on the grill, and you would have thought I had added gasoline to the grill, flames shooting up everywhere, I know the coals were right, there was just more grease in the meat than stated on package. So I move my burgers to the holding rack, to wait a little longer. About that time Larry got back from his "quick", hour long trip to the store. I put the burgers back on, and still my grill has dragon breath, so I decide they have enough flavor from the grill and bring them in to finish cooking on my griddle, and put the steaks on to cook, thank God, they cook perfect.

Now today just happened to be the hottest day in a week, and by this time, I am so hot, and sweating so badly, I can't see, because my eyes are full of sweat. I finally get the last steak off and come in shaking like a leaf, I had gotten so over heated. I looked at the family and say no way are we going to the park, until later when it is not so hot. Meantime I get everyone fed, including me. Well the food made me sick, because I had gotten over heated.

Now we are waiting for the sun to go down a little so we can head out for the park, I am talking to one of my guest, and all of a sudden, BOOM! BOOM! Well the perfect end to Murphy's Law, here comes the rain! Well at least I know it's going to cool off now, LOL. I look at Larry, and say, "I'm going to go see if I can find some fire works, Forget this.

Well all was not lost, we got a nice pack, started the grill back up, let the kids roast marshmallows, and light sparklers, Larry set off our fireworks and we had a wonderful time, right in our own back yard, one of the neighbor kids came down, and was so happy to get to participate, he even got his own box of sparklers, so I had another happy kid on my hands. We even got our dog Sassy in on the festivities , she got some marshmallows and a big sugar rush, running back and forth like a young pup. It was so funny to watch.

So what started as a potential disaster of a day, turned out to be another happy memory moment, for us and our children. Now to see what tomorrow brings, one thing about it, our lives are never boring.

Talk to my heart, what adventures did you have for the 4th of July, 2008 edition?

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Do You Have Stacation Plans?

We have already talked about the price of gas, and everything else going up. Apparently a lot of us are in the same boat this year, enough in fact that someone has created a catchy little name for what we will be doing, "Stacation." I happen to like this name, it makes me feel like I am doing something interesting. Instead of telling someone I am staying home and doing nothing this year, I can tell them, "Oh we will be on Stacation!" Now doesn't that sound much more interesting? I have already started our Stacation plans. The children love the great outdoors, fishing, camping, swimming, birdwatching, catching butterflies and lightning bugs and all the things that go along with this fun activity. Well we have all of that and more in our own back yard. We have two decent sized tents, so a few weeks ago when the kid's wanted to "Camp out" I allowed them to set up the tents. They have used them twice since then and as a matter of fact, as I type they are camping tonight. I have decided it makes them so happy, I am letting them make it a permanent fixture for the summer. Swimming? I bought a large 41/2x18 ft pool from Sam's last year, now if my hubby can get the green out, (his current honey do), they will be swimming by the weekend. Fishing is a bit tougher, my Beta who's name is Cleatus, is watching me type, so I have to be careful what I say here, shhhhh! Most farmers will not let people fish their ponds anymore, because a lot of people abuse the privilege, leaving trash, or tearing up the fields with their cars/trucks. I guess we are lucky because the children's Aunt has a nice fishing pond, and her sister who lives beside her has one too, so we can go there to fish, and we will be doing that this Saturday, but it does take about 20 minutes to get there, much better than 4 hours to other places though, and straight shot from our house. I am teaching all 5 of them to be good fishermen, they even put their own night crawlers on. The last time we went we caught 70 + bass and bream, then I had fun cleaning them, with a little help from one of my Grand daughters, Lauren. Then we had a fish fry, oh they were so yummy. We use House Autry fish breader, best on the market, we think. We have already grilled a lot this year, burgers, steak, shrimp, veggies I love cooking anything on the grill. We have a burning ban here because of the draught, so I came up with a way we can still do smores, and roast marshmallows outside. I have the kid's to gather our kindling, and small branches, we put it in the grill on top of the burnt coals, and start our fire in the grill, works just as well as a campfire and no chance of it getting out of control, and burning all the dry grass and such around. The kid's can empty a bag of marshmallows in ten minutes, they love them. The rest is easy, God has provided the birds to watch, butterflies and lightning bugs to catch, and He even throws in the lizards and pill bugs that my 3 youngest love to put in a container to display. We have Bluebirds nesting in a birdhouse on our back deck, and I have three humming bird feeders hanging up out there too. I got hubby a telescope for Christmas, so he and the kids can see the stars up close and personal. When the kids get too hot during the day they can get in their cooling station that I got a few months back, from a Good Deal Alert, from Anjies newsletter you can join here....
It is a big blow up playhouse like thing, that you hook the hose to, and it sprays fine streams of water. It retailed for $129.00, I got it for $9.99, I got my Grandchildren who live here in town one too, now I am kicking myself for not ordering more, but I think at the time I could only get the two. because of my budget. Less than $25.00 for both with shipping, and the kids are loving it.
This week is July 4th our very favorite time in the summer. Thursday, we will go to the local park, where they have activities planned most of the day, rides, bands then fireworks when it gets dark. Friday, they will have a parade in the morning, then open the park back up at 12 for more fun, with things going on all day, then more fireworks Friday night. We are having family and friends over on Friday for a cookout, then we will all head for the park around 4 and stay until after the fireworks show. Sat. we will go to the kids Aunts house, do some fishing and cook out again. Then the kids have an invite to stay the rest of the weekend at her house, that will give me and hubby a little much needed time alone. Our house is usually full the whole summer, our 5, then one or more of the kids usually have a friend spending the night, well more like the week, which we don't mind, it keeps ours occupied, helps the other parents out, who have to work and what is one or two more anyway? Then we have 3 of our Grand Daughters coming in on the 12th, when they get here, the 3 who live here in town will more than likely come too, they all get along so well, because they are so close in age, so then we will really have a house full, it is also possible that our other 2 from out of town will come during that time too. They keep me hopping when I have them all here like that, but I love every minute that I get to spend with them. They grow up so fast, and the ones who live away, only get to come a couple of times a year, I miss out on so much of their lives, so I make up for it in the summer, every chance I get. Now you may think I am just one of those prejudiced Mom/Grand mom's, and you can think what you like, but I have the most awesomely wonderful, beautiful, talented, sweet children/grand children in the world, if you don't believe me, just ask me, LOL.
That's it for this installment, Talk to my heart, tell me if you have any Stacation plans for the summer, I may need some more ideas before it's over!

Keeping Our Children Safe

This link is for publications geared towards 4th graders, to help teach them about abuse. It is Parent interactive, which I feel is very important when we are trying to teach our children about personal safety. I feel it is the Parents responsibility to teach our children about abuse, molestation, predators and sex education. I use tools to help, but I don't want a stranger telling my children, their beliefs, and impressing their moral values on my children. I wish more parents felt this way, and I really feel that if Doctors offices, and other agencies provided parents with tools to help talk to their children, more parents would. HHHMMMM, Maybe I need to get creative and make some literature, just for this. See I am doing that dangerous thing again, (thinking.) Seems like this blog just brings it out in me.
Talk to my heart, comment on this info, or ask me any questions you have on this issue. Have a blessed and safe 4th of July.

Monday, June 30, 2008

Another Goodie and It's FREE

Do your kid's like the movies, well then you're in luck. Regal theaters are showing free movies on Tuesday and Wed. this summer, Detail below, Hope you enjoy!

When school's out, kids around the country visit selected Regal theatres for the Free Family Film Festival. It's a fun-filled nine weeks of movies for kids and parents. Since 1991, Regal has provided this service to the community, and best of all it's FREE!

Selected G & PG movies start at 10AM each Tuesday and Wednesday during the festival. First-come, first-served seating is limited to theatre capacity. The Free Family Film Festival is safe, lots of fun and a great way for kids to spend a weekday morning in the summer.

Click link for times and shows....

Sunday, June 29, 2008

How About $50 To Shop

I told you that sometimes I would share good deals with you. Well I have one to share! If you are a blogger you can win $50.00 to spend at WonderBrains, and all you have to do is post. You can check out the contest using the attached link, and I wish you all and myself luck.

They Say It Comes In Three's

Have you ever had "ONE OF THOSE WEEK'S?" Well this was mine!
Last Saturday promised to be a relaxing fun filled day with just me and my girls. My 9 year old had been invited to her BFF at schools birthday party. It was going to be at a place at our local mall called Xtreme Play. They have all these blow up slides, bouncers, ball pits, video games. The girls had been begging to go since it opened about eight months ago. So I decided we would all go to the party, and just make a girls day out of it, we do that every month or two, we will go get our hair done, or go shopping, any fun thing just for us. So me, my 17, 10, 9 and 6 year old all headed to the mall. The girls were having a blast, and the ones who weren't invited to the party, got to eat cake, and everything with the party. My 17 yr. old and I waited until the party was winding down, and went across the hall to a BBQ rest. and had a set down lunch, while the other three got in a little more play. From where we were we could see the girls, and the door, so we knew they were safe. When we finished, I told her to go collect her sisters, that I would go on and get the explorer opened up. Well as I approached I saw the left of it looked funny, flat as a fritter, left front tire. I called my hubby and told him to bring our 14 yr old son and change the tire. Mean time here comes the 17 year old with no sisters. They wouldn't let her have them because her ID bracelet had a different number than the party bracelet. I said, just go back in and tell them to play until Dad gets here to change the flat. A few more minutes and the mall police,( yes we have mall police, they have an annex in our mall), stopped to see if I needed help, I said no, my hubby was on the way. He had no sooner walked off, hubby calls, he stopped to get gas, and his van wouldn't crank back up, I said maybe the battery was low, at 5MPG we don't drive it much, there was no one around with jumper cables, and ours were in my car. I said call AAA, well he tried to start it one more time and it cranked. Called me back said on my way. 5 minutes later, ring...Honey, I am broke down on 3, it is smoking and won't go anywhere, again call AAA I say. They won't come tow him, his tags expired. Mean time I go locate the kind policeman, sure he will help, let him get what he needs, ringgggg, "I am sorry but I have to go break up a fight, just hang in there, I will be right back," (Famous last words!) So I wait and wait, and wait some more. Finally the SGT. shows up, and I explain what has transpired, he will change it, no problem! (Remember the famous last words?) My tire iron won't work, he gets a 4 way, jacks it up, LOL because of where I am sitting, it won't go up far enough. He says he will go around to Sears and borrow a floor jack, Thanks be to God, I am thinking! Mean time my first rescuer comes back, he apologizes, says he broke up one fight, got called to another. Is that what they call Sat. night lights? Here comes Sarge, and between the two, they have it changed in about 3 minutes. So in I go to collect my kids, 4 hours later. They must have loved my kids, cause they didn't want to give them to me either, seems my bracelet had the same number as the 17 yr old. What happened was the BD party had one number, I paid the rest of our way in so was issued a different number, I was tempted to punish that rude woman, and leave all four of them, for her "pleasure", but I figured with my luck the kind policeman, would beat me home with them.

That was finally over, then comes Monday. I woke up and my leg was hurting so bad, I couldn't put weight on it. Been having problems with blood clots in the left one, this is the right, I am hoping they will dissolve before Monday, if not back to the Doctor.

Tuesday rolls around Hubby is gonna have a sleep study done at the VA. He will be spending the night. I hear my son ask, "what is that noise?" I am half asleep, in so much pain, with the leg, that I can't sleep. The 17 year old says, oh just the water heater filling up, so I didn't think anymore about it. Hubby left around five, about seven, I go to the kitchen, and my 10 yr. old is in there too, she says, "Mom whys water all over the floor here, I look and a big puddle of water is coming from under the pantry door, "Oh SH>>" I knew what was happening, since we had had another hose burst right after we moved in last year. Seems the lady we bought the house froms hubby had plumbed the water heater, and did a slip shod job. To get to the water heater, I had to take all the food out of pantry, take down 4 shelves, remove a wall panel. By the time I got done, I said it looked like a rerun of "I love Lucy. I was soaked from my head to my feet, I got the spigots turned off going to the heater, water was still gushing, couldn't get hubby on his cell, to find out what the next step was, by then I was adding to the flood, I was crying so hard. My brother finally got there, a half hour later, went under the house and turned off the spigot under the house. Well you can imagine, it looked like the flood was coming, and me in it up to my eyeballs. We used the shop vac, and carpet shampooer to suck up as much of the water as we could, hubby finally called back, after I got done, wouldn't you know it? Well I called the insurance company and reported what happened, told them I was gonna wait until everything dried out then let them send an adjuster out. I in the mean time am trying to keep a praise report on my lips and in my heart. I keep saying well I wanted to change over to wood looking floors anyway, this may be God's way of me being able to afford to do it, wouldn't that be nice? Woohoo! Some more small things have happened, like when we got the hoses fixed, we had trouble getting water to the toilet again, we still have one not filling, any ideas? I hope this run of bad luck has ended I am so ready for a nice quiet couple of days. Keep us in your prayers, and I will keep you in mine.

Now talk to my heart, tell me how your week was, and any bad luck you've had, but also tell me something funny, I could use a good laugh about now.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Just A Little Something For The Family

With the cost of gas, groceries and everything else going up daily, I will try to find free or cheap entertainment to share with you. Our family will be sticking close to home this year, and this is the perfect site to find something to entertain the kids.

I don't know about your city, but 2 of the parks in my area are doing free movies. We took advantage of this for the past two years. The movies are basically aimed towards the kids, the last one we saw was "The Bee Movie", but they are just about all new or fairly current releases, so very enjoyable. One of the parks does this every other Friday, until school starts back. The other one will only show 4 over the summer.
Also check with you County Parks and Recreation site online, ours is having all kinds of free activities this summer, like nature walks, scavenger hunts, etc. worth checking.

Subscribe to your cities web site, you will receive a newsletter monthly, that lets you know what is going on in your town.

Talk to my heart, tell me what plans you have for fun this summer.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

The First Cooking Lesson

My Mom could never be accused of being in the run for Ms. Susie Home Maker. She was not much of a cleaner, or cook when we were growing up, my sister and I did all the house work, mom worked full time. When she did cook, she thought everything had to be well done. Now her Idea of well done was black as charcoal. When I moved to SC , and would come home to visit, my hubby and my favorite joke was, "we didn't need an alarm clock to tell us it was time to get up, mom's smoke detector would wake us up." (True story).
So it was left to my Dad, and when I married my ex hubby, his Mom, to teach me how to cook, thank goodness, they were both excellent good old country cooks.
I am not a chef by any means but, people love to eat my cooking, my children come home, just to get mom's food, and my friends and other family members have always come to my house to eat. I do the Holiday dinners for our big family, and all of them can't wait for Thanksgiving and Christmas to come around, because I always try to make one favorite for everyone who comes.
Between my hubby and myself we have taught all our children who wanted to learn how to cook. So now my five adopted have decided they all want to learn how. I promised them that when school was out we would start their lessons. So Sunday was our start day. I asked who wanted to be first, and my 9 year old, Ariel Yelled the loudest, so on to the lesson.
Ariel is a bright girl, she learns fast, and retains things well, so I knew she would do well. I had already decided to do Country Style Steak, but I let her decide what sides to make along with it.
I got a notebook and put her name, the date etc. Then I told her to write out her menu.
She had the steak of course, rice and the gravy from the steak, corn on cob, black eyed peas, and biscuits....Yummy.
We started with the basics, she put her hair back, and washed her hands with soap and water, put on her apron that I had just received from a freebie. Mom is a stickler for cleanliness in the kitchen, no one will ever be afraid to eat something I cook.
I taught her to boil the meat to make it tender, then roll in flour and fry, all the steps to make the best Country steak ever. After each step I had her make notes, so she could go back to her notes anytime, or her siblings could, to recreate the meal.
I taught her what to cook first until last, so it would all come together at the same time. I was so proud of her, she was diligent from first to last, breading the steak, adding the ingredients for the delicious gravy, measuring the water and rice, adding a pinch of sugar to bring out the sweetness of the corn. She was awesome!
Now to plate and table, you should have heard the oohs and aahs, her brother said, "When I grow up I'm always gonna come to your house to eat, everyone ate until they were stuffed.
Was that the important thing in the cooking lesson? I say an absolute NO WAY!
The important things were, the time we got to spend bonding together, the pride she gained from seeing she could do it, the accomplishment, of starting something and finishing it, most important of all, THE MEMORIES, she will have.
I was so glad that Ariel was the first one to have a cooking lesson. All foster children have some sort of baggage they carry, hers is never feeling like what she does is good enough. She can make straight A's and still feel inadequate, tell her she is beautiful, and she doesn't see it, she did good at this, or that, no she could have done better. Not this time! Her chest stuck out, a big smile on her face, she was proud, and as her Mom and teacher, so was I.
Talk to my heart, tell me something memorable in your life, I would love to read your story.....

Friday, June 20, 2008

This Should Never Happen In America

I try to keep things light, I am not a dooms sayer, and I usually think of the glass as half full. The article I want to share with you goes completely against "Usual". My favorite saying as a Foster/Adoptive parent is ; "You can make a difference in the life of a child." I believe this with all my heart and soul. So why then; didn't someone make a difference in the life of the child you will be reading about? Friends after you read this, I hope you determine to never again look the other way. No matter if it is a family member, friend, or your own spouse. Report child abuse, to your local Department of Children's Services, your police or sheriffs department, call 911 even, but don't close your eyes and say. "Someone else will do it." Click the link below, read and then share this blog with everyone you know. Be the person who makes that child safe. Talk to my heart, tell me what difference you plan to make........;_ylt=AqHYH.Ujtnq8XtjzfDF9R.RH2ocA

What's In A Name

Do you remember when you first found out you were going to be a parent? What was one of the first things you thought about? Well if you were like me; it was what are we going to name the baby?

The bible says in Proverbs 22:1 "A good name is to be chosen, rather than great riches." Wow! The name we choose must be very important, for God to want it mentioned in the bible.
With both of my natural born sons I kept that verse in my heart. With my oldest I read the baby name book for weeks. I knew I wanted his name to contain his dads name somewhere, which was Scott, (ex by the way), but what could we put with it that would be a "Good Name?"
We finally decided on Jason, which means Healer. The name was so appropriate to me because my husband had MS, and we both believed, and still believe that God could and would heal him.

Well twelve years later, I found myself single and dating, then I met my present husband Larry. I only had Jason. I had been diagnosed with endometreosis, and was told I would never have any more children, that was a heart breaker for me because I had always wanted a large family, (In another installment I will tell you about a dream, remind me if I forget!) Larry had 3 children, and I was thrilled, I finally had my large family, well Surprise! Surprise! Within a month I was pregnant. I had two miscarriage's and we found out I was pregnant again, we decided if I lost the baby this time, that would be it, because it was so hard on me emotionally and physically. This time I carried the baby full term, actually more than full term, he was what the Dr. called a floater, he would go down in the birth canal then float back up, and he's been stubborn like that all his life, (I still love you son.) I had no doubt what I wanted to name this one, my precious father had passed away when Jason was 2, and I wanted this one to be his name sake, whether it was a boy or a girl. Thus Jonathon which means.....NOW GET THIS! God has given. Can you see how this name thing works? His middle name came from someone who was just as important to Larry, his maternal grandfather Adam.

Now I will get to the point of why I chose this subject for the post today, about time huh?
When I was trying to think of what to call my blog, again the bible verse was in my heart. I had several idea's bouncing around. I knew what I wanted the premise of the blog to be from the start, but had no idea what to call it. As I was thinking about the content, and how I would communicate my feelings, I knew one thing for sure, I almost always speak not only what is in my head, but mainly what is in my heart. Some of you who know me well may dispute this next statement, but here goes; I consider myself an intelligent woman. I don't have a college education, most of everything I know, and what I will write on this blog comes from the good old fashioned "School of hard knocks." You can believe me when I tell you I have a wealth of knowledge that comes with that degree. My life has been a learning experience in many different areas, some good, some bad, and some devastating but guess what I found out early on; no matter what I have gone through in my life, God has put someone in my path who needed the knowledge and strength I gained from the experience. I have always believed that you can look at someone all day long and say, I know how you feel, but unless you have walked in those shoes, you are full of bull.

As we begin our relationship together on this blog you will find out why I chose the name. The post I write, the advice I give you, the feelings I express, the friendship we develop will for the most part not come from a book, though if what you need is advice that has to be "legal", I will research it out for you, but for the most part it will be you, "Talking To My Heart." I can't wait to get started, can you?

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


I am asked all the time, "Why did you become a Foster Parent?" A short and sweet answer to that question for me is "That's my calling in life." Some people become Lawyers, Doctors, Teachers, and Ditch Diggers, I was meant to be a parent. Oh believe me I have had many jobs in my life, some good, some nightmares, but none have ever been as fulfilling to me as becoming a parent. If you have read my profile, you see we have 10 children, 5 of those are Natural born, His, Mine, Ours, and our baby is 21 now, and is getting ready to become a Daddy himself. 5 are Adopted. Whenmy 21 year old was in high school, and all our other children were grown and gone, I got empty nest syndrome. For those of you who don't know what that is, let me explain.....I was going crazy with no kids to have to cook for, pick up behind, and wipe their snotty noses. You may say it, I say it to myself sometimes, "ARE YOU CRAZY?"
Since I was a child, I always wanted to help children, we were poor, didn't even know if we would eat sometimes, but I would have given my last scrap of food to another child if I knew they needed it. So, many years later here I am with no one to wet nurse, could not have any children of my own, my children wouldn't let me keep my Grandchildren forever, no matter how much I begged, and they begged, so what was the solution? It came in the form of trying to help a friend of my sons, who came home one day to find his whole family gone, electricity turned off, no food, nothing, and no idea where his Mom and Step dad had gone. Since he practically lived at my house anyway, he came to the only place he knew he would be taken care of, Momma Marilyn's.
In the process of trying to get him registered in our school district, (though he only lived a few blocks from us, he was in a different district), medicaid, so I could get him checked out, and other things, I found out that in our state the only way to legally get him any help was to become Licensed Foster Parents. We had to take 10 weeks of classes, have background checks, fingerprints and all sorts of what I felt at the time were invasive things, later on though I came to realize, it was all for the safety of the children. Thus began the best and worst 5 years of my life. The best because I have been able to help over 20 children in that time, the worst because I get so close to these wonderful children who ask only to be safe and loved, and when it is time for them to leave to go back to their Biological parent(s), or Adoptive homes, it is hard to let go, but then I see how much I have accomplished with them, and them with me, and I can smile and say bring on the next one. So how about you? Thinking about becoming a Foster Parent? Need to add some meaning to your life, and the life of a child? Want to fill that empty nest? Here what you need to do.....
Contact your local Department of Children's Services, they should be listed in the white pages of your phone book, or the county government section.
For more information on Fostering you can go to your states foster and adoptive parent association, just put the initials for your state , like mine is NCFAPA.ORG, NC for North Carolina, this is a group of Foster and Adoptive parents all over your state who help answer questions and advocate for Foster parents/children at a state and national level. If you become a FP please join your local association if your area has one, if not start one of your own.

That is it for today, I will leave you with this bit of wisdom: "Tell your children you love them everyday, even when they have gotten on your last nerve you don't think you do, tomorrow will be a new day ."

My Very First Bog

Have you ever felt proud of yourself for an accomplishment? Well I do today. When I was first asked about doing a Blog, I thought, "Oh My Goodness, how am I going to do that, I know nothing about blogging, except reading what other people write, and making comments, well that was a no brainer, easy to do right? But how in the world would I do a blog of my own? I have poked and prodded and changed everything a zillion times, and guess what! I finally did it! I hope you like the finished product, and I also hope that you become daily readers, and posters to "Talk To My Heart". We will have fun in this adventure, learn new things, help each other with our daily issues, and become fast friends.
I thought about what my first topic should be and decided it would be , Drum roll please..................