Category Archives: Staci

Great Deal Sites — I’m Hooked!

I’ve recently discovered some Baby/Kid Deal Sites, and it’s become a daily ritual to check out the bargains.  A friend recommended one to me on Facebook, and I read this article to find the others.  I’m going to list my favorites and give a little summary of what kind of deals they run.  Click the Site Name and it will take you to the Deal Site.


Baby Steals

  • This site has two deals daily: one at 9 a.m. & another at 9 p.m. MDT (so 10 where I am).
  • They have a Baby section, Kid section, and Scrapbooking section.
  • When the products are gone, they’re gone…but most of the ones I’ve seen have lasted a while.
  • This site has AWESOME shipping!  I’ve been so surprised by how quickly they get your orders out.
  • Speaking of shipping, be sure you check the shipping at the different sites to see if the deal is worth it.  I think this one is around $5-6 for shipping (at least where I’m located).
  • They also have a secret Archive Link HERE where you can browse past Steals that have yet to be sold out.
  • I’ve made two Baby Steals purchases and I’ve been VERY pleased with the prices, service and quality of the products!

Eco Buys

  • This site has one new deal a day.  However, you can also purchase the previous two days’ deals if they aren’t sold out!
  • Being able to purchase more than one day’s deal makes the shipping more worth it.
  • As you can see from the name of the site, all of the products are eco friendly.
  • One of the drawbacks of this site is the delayed shipping: the items won’t even ship for a while after the sale (for example, today’s deal will ship 10-14 days from today).
  • We’ve made one purchase at this site and we’re still waiting for it to come in, but it was a great deal!

Mama Bargains

  • This site is really unique in that it constantly has a deal.  When it’s sold out, it’s replaced by another deal, and so on…
  • Some items go really quickly (I think the fastest I’ve seen is for bras) and some end up being changed out because no one will buy them (they’ve tried to sell these bikes without pedals twice recently, and no one wants them).
  • The way you can see if an item is going quickly is by the little “Mama” icon next to the item.  She moves on a slider from “Lots Left” to “Almost Gone”.
  • I’ve seen quite a few high-end items here including diaper bags, maternity/nursing clothes, kids clothes and toys, etc.
  • I haven’t bought anything here, so I’m not sure what the shipping/customer service is like, but I have enjoyed watching the deals.

Baby Earth’s GaGa Deals

  • This site has the potential to be dangerous!  It’s addictive.
  • They have one site every hour 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. CST.
  • But there’s a catch: Every second, the price drops.  But it could also sell out at any second.
  • So you don’t want to jump on the deal too quickly, but you don’t want to wait too long either.
  • One thing I didn’t realize is that you have to check out before the deal’s hour is up.  One time I put the item in my cart (at a really great price!) and decided to wait to see what the next item would be before checking out.  When I went back to check out, it said the deal was past time and I would have to pay full price if I wanted the item.  Oops.  So I missed out that time.
  • Also, one big draw-back of this site is the shipping!  The cheapest shipping to my house is $6.95.  This may not seem like a lot, but a lot of the time a deal will sell out before it even makes it worth the shipping.  So check Amazon to see what they’re selling it for before you jump on a deal.
  • They also have Open Box, Closeout, and Scratch & Dent, and Seasonal Sales at this site.
  • I made my first purchase at this site yesterday ($1.30 for a gDiaper!)

Those are my favorite Baby/Kid Deal Sites so far.  I’ve scored a few great deals on diapers, a wet bag (for diapers, swimming suits, laundry, etc.), and a fun toy.

One thing to keep in mind with these sites: not every deal is worth it.  And not every deal is a must.  Other than that, HAPPY DEAL SHOPPING!


Q for You: Do you know of any Deal Sites you can pass along to all of us?





Christmas Albums 2011

Last year Staci and I did a post on our favorite Christmas albums. It pretty much covers our favorite albums up to last year. You can check that blog post out HERE.

With the new year and the new Christmas albums that we’ve gotten, I figured it was only right to post about those albums here. Check ’em out and Enjoy!

(Staci’s thoughts will be in italics.)

“Oh For Joy” by David Crowder*Band — The David Crowder*Band (DCB) has been one of my favorite bands since I was in high school. I’ve waited a long, long time for this album, and although it wasn’t what I would have expected, it is an instant favorite. The DCB had its humble beginnings as a worship band, and I feel like this CD kind of takes their newer flare and meshes with their roots in a really creative and moving way. Although I will always love the classic type of Christmas music, it tends to wear on you throughout the Christmas season; so I feel like “Oh For Joy” is a breath of fresh air from your typical Christmas album. Oh and their cover of “Christmas Sarajevo” better known as “The Carol of the Bells” by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra is impeccable!

I haven’t really listened to this one much, but when I have, I’ve liked it.

“Christmas” by Jadon Lavik — This is a great Christmas album that has a really acoustic feel to it reminiscent to Jack Johnson (I think that may be the reason why I personally like it so much). You’ll notice my trend in finding artists who really put their own vibe on the Christmas classics. Although I have never listened to Jadon’s non-seasonal music, I have really grown to love this album.

I’d never heard of Jadon Lavik, but I really like this album! It’s classic, yet original at the same time. The only problem is it has “Mele Kalikimaka” as the second to last song, and it ALWAYS gets stuck in my head. I love the way he does the song, but it’s not so much fun anymore when I wake up singing it at 4:30 a.m. 🙂

“Christmas” by Michael Buble — We share the same first name, now if only we shared the same vocal abilities! A few years back Michael Buble came out with his Christmas EP “Let it Snow,” and I couldn’t believe that he only put like 4 songs on it. As soon as I heard there was full length Christmas album I had to have it right away! And to my expectations, it was totally worth every penny spent on it; lots of fun tracks with his Michael-Buble-buttery-smooth voice to top it off. And I like his old school groove. I almost have to say that he tops Franky and the Rat Pack on certain tracks. The only complaint would be… why on earth would a male do a remake of “Santa Baby”. I will say this track stands out (in a completely bad way) on the rest of the album. Just kinda of wrong for a man to sing that song to Santa. Otherwise, a very very good album!

Oh my. I can’t say enough about this one. I’ve been a HUGE Michael Buble fan since my freshman year of college. And he has the absolute perfect Christmas voice. I agree with (my) Michael that “Santa Buddy” (his remake of “Santa Baby”) is completely ridiculous. But the rest of the album is incredible! He has some really fun tracks, as well as some great classic-style tracks. I think my favorite might be “Jingle Bells”. He just does an incredible old-school style. “Ava Maria” and “Feliz Navidad” are both done in a very good way as well. I could comment on every single track on this album, but you’ll just have to check it out for yourself! This is definitely my favorite addition to our collection this year.

“Snow Globe” by Matt Wertz — If you’re into the pop-ee, Singer/Songwriter genre then this Christmas album is a must have. I like that he has a good mix of originals –such as the title track “Snow Globe”, and “Tennessee Christmas”– as well as the classics. Staci and I are huge fans of Dave Barnes and his Christmas Album that debut last year, and this album kinda of just flows along with it; definitely a new favorite for the two of us!

We’re actually listening to this album right now. I love that it’s so upbeat. He has a lot of original songs, “Snow Globe” being my favorite, as well as a lot of classics. Matt Wertz has been another favorite of mine since college, and this album definitely ranks high on my Christmas favorites!

I also have to say that Dave Barnes’ “Very Merry Christmas” is still my very favorite Christmas album. Sometimes I listen to it multiple times in a day.

And for me, Mercy Me’s “The Christmas Sessions” will always be #1 alongside “Charlie Brown Christmas” by Vince Guaraldi.


What are some of your new (or old) favorite Christmas Albums?



Michael & Staci


What Are You Waiting For?

I recently read an article in “Neue” Magazine entitled “True Love Isn’t Waiting”.  You can check out the article HERE.  80% of “young evangelicals” (ages 18-29) have had sex, as opposed to 88% of non-Christian, unmarried young adults.  In fact, 42% of young, unmarried Christians said they are currently in a sexual relationship, while 53% of non-Christian young adults admit the same.

Are those statistics shocking to anyone else?  As I read the article, I was just blown away.  The church is openly opposed to pre-marital sex, but there is obviously a huge disconnect between what is expected and what is done.

I agree with the article in that one of the huge reasons these statistics are what they are is that sex is avoided as a topic of teaching and discussion in the church.  Granted, most students hear multiple forms of “true love waits” talks in youth group, but by the time they get to college, many don’t seem to remember what they’re actually waiting for.


I just read a book entitled “What Are You Waiting For?” by Dannah Gresh.

Through straight-talk and practical examples, Dannah helps young women to see why God has made us the way we are, why waiting is such a big deal, and the incredible rewards of being pure.

In the first few chapters, Dannah introduces us to the Hebrew word used for intimate sex throughout the Old Testament: yada.  As in “Adam lay [yada] with his wife Eve, and she became pregnant and gave birth to Cain.” Genesis 4:1.

yada: verb.  to know, to be known, to be deeply respected

In other words, yada is both a deep respect and an emotional knowing.  The same Hebrew word is also used in relation to God and us.  For example: “Be still, and know [yada] that I am God” Psalm 46:10.  And “O LORD, you have searched me and you know [yada] me.” Psalm 139:1.  Dannah puts it so well when she says:

It’s clear from these verses that yada isn’t about a merely physical act.  Rather, yada is a word of intimacy that transcends the physical.  It describes the whole knowing of a person.  It portrays an uncovering and embrace of the nakedness of another.  There are no secrets and nothing is held back…This is the heart of yada.  To be known–just as we are–and still be pursued.

She also tells a story from the Bible of a horrible act of incest (Genesis 19).  When she looked up this Hebrew word for “lay”, she found something else entirely.  This word is shakab, which basically means “to exchange body fluids.”  She goes on to say:

Some sex is God’s sex.  It’s yada.

Some sex is counterfeit.  It’s shakab.

Our culture sells us shakab, while God has perfectly designed yada.  Dannah goes on to explain and expound on these concepts.  She also talks about the amazing gift of grace and starting over if you’ve already made mistakes.  And she does a fantastic job.  Her transparency and straightforwardness are exactly what this generation of young women (and men!) need.

I highly recommend “What Are You Waiting For?” to every unmarried young woman.  I also recommend that you read it if you’re a parent of a young woman, or if you will be someday.  And even though this is written for girls, I agree with Melody Carlson (a teen fiction author) when she says that guys should read it as well.

I’ll leave you with one last excerpt from the book:

God’s call for sex to be preserved for one man and one woman who have not even a hint of sexual experience anywhere else is in context with His plan to portray Himself and His love to a lost world.  I believe the exclusive passion and commitment of a bride and groom is meant to be a picture of an exclusive, exciting relationship with Jesus Christ that is free from any other gods.  When people witness the passion and mystery of the rarely seen couple who are still emotionally engaged with each other “after all these years,” it gives credence to the possibility of something lasting and passionate.  And the apostle Paul said such a relationship will be so rare in our world that it will be called a “mystery.”  He went on to say it will make people hungry for the mysterious, exclusive love of Christ.


So what are your views on this?  Do you think it’s something the church needs to address–aside from the occasional youth group talk? 





Please take a few seconds to rank my review of this book HERE.

You can purchase the book from Amazon HERE.

You can check out the first chapter and find more information about the title HERE.

This book was sent to me by Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group through the Blogging for Books Program.  You can find more information about Blogging for Books HERE.


Cooking for 90

On Tuesday of last week, I didn’t think I was going to survive.  I’d been cooking for a group of 90 students and adults at U.M. ARMY (our high school mission trip) for a little over a day, and I thought I was going to die.

I called my mom and left a voice message that was something to the effect of, “Momma, I just wanted to call and talk.  Oh, and I have a new appreciation of you.  Cooking at camp sucks.”

Earlier that day, I’d tried to light the stupid gas oven for over 15 minutes, without success.  I finally just sat in the floor and almost cried.  I’d been to MANY camps, mission trips, etc., but I was way more tired than I’d ever been before.  Maybe the fact that we got up around 5:15 a.m. every morning had something to do with it…  I now understand what they’re talking about when they say that cooks have the hardest job.

I was honestly wishing that I hadn’t agreed to be the kitchen coordinator.  But then I was able to go to the pool with our students…and everything changed.

I walked around and took some pictures of the students in the pool and playing volleyball.

And then I had a chance to just sit and talk with some of “our girls” and some other students on the bleachers.  And it was literally the highlight of my week.

For any of you who have been a part of a youth ministry (either as a student or an adult), you know that a LOT of connecting takes place over the summer.  So much bonding happens at camp and other events.  Quite a few of our students that went haven’t been very active in the youth group up until this past mission trip.  So I was hoping for a chance to really bond with them.  And since I had to be in the kitchen (or going to Wal-Mart or Sam’s) all day, I felt like I wasn’t getting that.

But on Tuesday night, it was great.

We just sat and talked about school and sports and youth camps and Compassion International and lots more.  I feel like God gave me those couple of hours with those girls.  In fact, I know that He did.  He knew that I needed it–not only so I could get out of the kitchen before I tore the oven out of the wall but also so that I could grow closer to some of these girls.

Because ministry happens when relationships are formed.

Wednesday through Friday, I was able to go out and visit the work sites for a few hours in the afternoon.  After we (Michael’s mom and a girl named Becca–who completely saved me in the kitchen!) went on our daily Wal-Mart run (which consisted of 3-4 baskets full of food to get us through the next day), we’d hurry and prepare that night’s dessert and/or snack, and then we’d have some free time.

Since I was craving time with our kids, I was able to drive around and visit the students and see all of the awesome work they were doing.

I was SO proud of them!  They did everything from build wheelchair ramps and porches to replace siding on houses to painting to fixing floors and roofs.  It was awesome to see God use them to bless the people in the town where we were.

Even though I felt so tired before I headed out to see them, it became one of the best parts of my day.  It was as if I was re-energized after I saw what a great job they were doing.

By the end of the week, I was really glad that I was asked to be in the kitchen.  All of the recipes turned out great (thanks for all of the desserts and snacks, Mom!), and I was able to go and visit with everyone instead of just having my work group of students.  God knew what He was doing–as always.

In fact, I’d like to do kitchen again sometime.  Granted, I’ll do a few things differently–like take my own pans, mixers, etc.; buy thin bacon instead of super thick bacon (I guess we should have looked at the package!); etc.–but I would like to do it again.  Well…maybe without the gas ovens.

It turned out to be an incredible week.  And I’m thankful that God allowed me to be a part of the ministry that took place.



What is the biggest number of people you’ve ever cooked for?




New Music

Recently, Staci and I were opened up to a new world of music thanks to Catalyst.  I have to admit that I am a bit of a music snob, and I’ve really had a hard time finding some new stuff that I really like.  On a similar note, I also have to admit that my favorite type of music just doesn’t really exist anymore.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m not trying say that no new music is good, I’m just a bit of a snob over it (one of my downfalls).


Anyway, I digress… As I stated above, I have found some new stuff (some might even call it trendy stuff) that I really like.

I (Michael) will be in plain text while…

Staci will be in italics

ps… for those of you who have read our shared blog posts before, this is kind of the opposite of what we do. So I hope we don’t throw you off 🙂

You can click on the artist’s name and it will take you to their official site, by the way.



One band that we both have really grown to love is Gungor.  This is a youtube video of my favorite song of theirs.  This particular version is of them doing it in the forest “unplugged,” if you will.  It’s pretty cool, and the album version is even better.

In all honesty, I didn’t want to go to their concert the night they were playing at Catalyst.  So we just walked around and looked at merchandise and things until it was time for the speaker.  But then when we heard them play after the speaker, we were blown away.  We’ve loved them ever since.



I’ve found myself playing this song over and over while I do graphic design stuff for church.  They just inspire creativity.  When they played at Catalyst, you could just look around and see people with their mouths open.  We were all mesmerized.


The City Harmonic

The City Harmonic is another really awesome up-and-coming band.  We gave away there EP at church and the student who got it said that she really really liked it…  Confirmation from a teenager, that makes TCH legit!

This is another CD that I’ve been playing over and over while I do graphic design stuff.  I hope they come out with another album soon.


A couple of other “not-so-new” bands that we really enjoy, and would love to share with you are:

NewWorldSon (yes it’s all supposed to be one word like that).

I actually heard “There is a Way” on K-Love driving home from work one day.  I didn’t know who sang it, but the next time we heard it on the radio, we wrote down some lyrics to find out who sang it (don’t you love technology?!).  We really like them a lot! 

One of my favorite things about them is that each of their songs is unique, with an overarching blues feel.  Good vocals, good music, good lyrics, great album!



This is a bit older band, NEEDTOBREATHE.  You may have heard this song of theirs…


Dave Barnes

Dave Barnes has been one of my favorite artists for the past 6 years.  This is one of his newer songs, but I also really like his old stuff.  Oh–and a bonus is that he makes goofy videos and can make fun of himself on youtube.  See example HERE.


The [M]useum

This one is kind of a shout out to a friend of mine (Ben Richter) who is the front man of the band.  Their lyrics are really honest and one of my favorite aspects of the band is their desire to make a difference with more than just their music.  They just released a single “Not For Sale” (click to download).  This song is a way that they hope to raise awareness of the human trafficking going on across the world.



We could go on and on, but I think that’s enough for today.  We hope you enjoy!  And maybe you’ll even find a new favorite artist.  🙂


–Staci AND Michael


Q for you:  Who is one artist/band we should all check out?



Sno Cone Quest

Sno cones = summer.

For as far back as I can remember, I’ve equated sno cones with summer.  In Ada (where I grew up, and where Michael and I lived for 2.5 yrs before we moved down to Beaumont), there are sno cone stands ALL over the town.  Car dealerships, shopping center parking lots, car wash areas, Wal-Mart lots, gas stations,  you name it–there are sno cone stands there.  From Memorial Day to Labor Day, you can expect to see cars in line for over an hour just to get a sno cone.

And it’s always worth it.

So, naturally, the closer we got to Memorial Day, the more excited I was for sno cones (even though they should break out the sno cone stands around February here…but that’s another story).  I kept looking for them everywhere we went.

And there were NONE.

Over the past week, it’s become somewhat of an obsession.  My eyes are peeled as we’re driving down the road, and Michael is really tired of me saying “I just want a cherry limeade sno cone!”

Today, I was determined to find a stand.  I had my sno cone eyes trained on every parking lot in sight.  And nada. But I didn’t give up.  We went to see our house (more on that later), and I convinced Michael to drive to the other highway in town to see if there was one there.  We turned into a gas station to turn around at the end of town…

And that’s when I saw it…

MR. BUBBLES SNO CONES! dun-dun-dun!

So, of course, we pulled in and tried to gather our change and get in line before the guy that pulled up after us did.  And we succeeded.  I ordered my cherry limeade, and waited for my cup o’ goodness.

And I was slightly let down.

I mean, it was ok…but it was more like the kind you get at a park.  You know, with the more crunchy ice and the fake tasting syrup.  I had my heart set on the perfection that is an Ada sno cone:  Super small shaved ice–the kind in the above picture, clear lime flavoring–aka more “real”, a hint of cherry, and fresh squeezed limes on top.  Mmmmm…yum.

Maybe we’ll have better luck next time.  And if not, a crunchy sno cone is better than no sno cone!


Q for you:  What’s your favorite sno cone flavor? Sno cone stands: are there lots, some, or none where you live?




P.S.  If you’re from Ada, go enjoy a sno cone for me!  And realize just how good you have it…apparently sno cones aren’t so abundant as I thought.  🙂



Updated Pages

Hi!  I just wanted to let you know I’ve updated a few pages.  I’ve added lots of books (and other genres) to the Books Page and I’ve updated some things on Staci’s List.  Feel free to check them out!  🙂





Ready to Run

I just finished a book on running called “Marathoning for Mortals”.  I learned so much, and now I can’t wait to start my journey towards running a 1/2 marathon!

I learned that I need to consistently run 3 times a week for at least 10 months before I start officially training, but I’m just excited to even think about finally working towards this goal.

I haven’t always had this ambition.  In fact, I’m pretty sure my high school cross-country coach would laugh at me if I told him I want to run a 1/2 marathon.  You see, I wasn’t the greatest/most dedicated runner.

  • I spent every practice chatting while I “ran” with my friend, Rachel.
  • One of my favorite memories from cross-country is the time Rachel and I saw a huge black dog behind us on our trail.  We screamed like the girls we were, and took off running faster than we’d ever ran before.  I guess that’s one form of motivation.
  • The next day, Tyler, who was a year older than we were, came running up behind us (yes, he’d “lapped” us).  We thought he was the same black dog, and we took off running and screaming again.  And then, when we’d realized it was him, we laughed so hard we could hardly breathe.  He just looked at us like we were crazy.
  • My favorite days were “run 6 miles or 45 minutes–whatever comes first” days.  It was a no-brainer for Rach and me: why run 6 miles in less than 45 minutes when we could leisurely jog?
  • I begged my coach to let me run JV in every race that had a JV run.  He only let me once.
  • Sometimes we would decide that we didn’t feel like running, so we’d walk the course until we saw one of our coaches.
  • And my personal favorite:  I once fell in a hole/twisted my ankle on purpose so I didn’t have to finish a race.

That’s me.  Cross-country champion.

But in all honesty, I really wouldn’t have been bad if I’d only set my mind towards doing well.  In the only race where I actually ran my best, I qualified for State (not that I did well once I got there, but at least I know I could have been doing much better throughout the season).

My sophomore year of college, I decided that I wanted to train for a 1/2.  I had a running partner named Matt, but we had to run at the track since he was forever faster than I was.  16 times around the track=BORING.  Then I started running with my friend Lauren, and we were doing really well!  We made it all the way up to 7.5 miles, and then I quit.  Michael and I started dating, and suddenly spending time with him was way more important than running.

Since we’ve been married, we’ve ran off and on quite a bit, and we both really enjoy it.  So now we’re going to really work at running 3 times a week.  We’re planning on running a 5k in April and then a 10k sometime after that.  And then we can train for a 1/2 marathon before too long.  Woo-Hoo!


Q for you:  Have you ran a marathon or a 1/2 marathon?  Do you want to?  If you have absolutely no desire to do so, what’s one thing you DO want to do that you’ve been putting off for way too long?





My List

I started working on “My List” last year, and I updated it a few weeks ago.  I thought I’d share it with you.  I’ll make it it’s own tab/page (next to “Books”) and keep it updated as I cross more things off.

Here’s the link:


Things I want to do while I’m alive:


  1. Visit all 50 states with Michael: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas (4/2010), California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida (9/2009), Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico (12/2010), New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma (2008), Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas (2007), Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
  2. Travel to all Continents (plus Central Am., minus Antarctica): North America (1987), Central America (2007: Panama), South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia
  3. Make $500 above my starting Miche Bag costs in 2010 (11/2010)
  4. Have 1 Miche Party a month in 2011 (so far, so good)
  5. Regularly spend time in prayer and Bible study
  6. Be debt free by the time our first child is born
  7. Finish my college scrapbook –I’ve finally actually started it.  That’s a start!
  8. Make a Disney World 2009 scrapbook
  9. Read 15+ books a year:  2010: 1) Unashamed: Rahab; 2) This Momentary Marriage; 3) Unspoken: Ruth; 4) Confessions of a Pastor; 5) The Centurion’s Wife; 6) Blink of an Eye; 7) To Kill with Reason; 8 ) The Slumber of Christianity; 9) Thunder of Heaven; 10) The Giver; 11) Homecoming; 12) Confessions of a Shopaholic; 13) A Walk to Remember; 14) The Horse & His Boy; 15) Prince Caspian; 16) Both Sides of Time; 17) Out of Time; 18) Crazy Love; 19) Dicey’s Song; 20-27) Harry Potter 1-7; 28) A Solitary Blue; 29) Unshaken: Ruth; 30) Unspoken: Bathsheba; 31) Unafraid: Mary; 32) The Voyage of the Dawn Treader; 33) The Runner;  2011:  1) Come a Stranger; 2) Never Let You Go; 3) Dying to Live;
  10. Do our finances once a week
  11. Go on an Alaskan cruise
  12. Put pictures in our frames and decorate the guest room & bathroom in 2010 (Feb & March 2010; again in Oct 2010)
  13. Run a 5k with Michael
  14. Run a 10k
  15. Run a half marathon
  16. Stay home with our children
  17. Pay cash for our next car
  18. Take dancing lessons
  19. Go to Brazil
  20. Send Birthday Cards to friends and family in 2011
  21. Make one new friend a year:  2010 (Danna); 2011
  22. Call at least one friend a month in 2011: (so far, so good)
  23. Invite someone over to play games at least once a month in 2010
  24. Buy outside patio furniture (March 2010)
  25. Own a house with a porch
  26. Teach our kids about God and His plan for them
  27. Give money to someone who needs it each month (so far, so good)
  28. Plan special things for Michael each year: 2010; 2011
  29. Read one book about marriage every year:  2010: This Momentary Marriage; 2011:
  30. Live a life that points others to Jesus
  31. Reach out to people who aren’t like me
  32. Go on at least 3 family mission trips when we have kids
  33. Stay out of the debt trap—never get in the habit of buying on credit
  34. Print and organize my Forge notes and other useful notes
  35. Organize my pictures and put them on Photobucket
  36. Work on having better posture (so far, so good)
  37. Watch a sunrise (while not in a car)
  38. Be the kind of family our kids want to be a part of
  39. Take time to play/relax
  40. Hang our hammock up again
  41. Identify and work on one character trait a year:  2010: Contentment; 2011:
  42. Play in the rain
  43. Send surprise letters/packages to people
  44. Always remember the importance of romance in our marriage
  45. Be known as someone who respects her husband
  46. Teach once a year (Bible study, lesson, etc.):  2010: BSU & with the Youth; 2011:
  47. Be transparent with people
  48. Create a recipe: Apple Pie Roll-Up (February 2010)
  49. Volunteer at or attend Catalyst again
  50. Ride a train
  51. Buy at least one new game a year:  2010: Blockus; 2011: Phase 10;
  52. Make memories as a family
  53. Be known as a positive person
  54. Paint our kids’ rooms in fun themes
  55. Become the house our kids’ friends want to hang out at
  56. Read through the Bible every year with Michael: 2009, 2010, 2011
  57. Become more informed of world and national news: (so far, so good)
  58. Ride in a Hot Air Balloon
  59. Go Sky Diving –Michael is taking me sky diving for my Christmas present this year!!  We just have to pick a date.
  60. Adopt a Child –or at least really pray about it and pursue it
  61. Go to the Olympics
  62. Visit our Compassion International Children
  63. See a Broadway Show on Broadway
  64. Go on a vacation at least once a year (even if it’s small):  2009: Walt Disney World (Sept); 2010: San Antonio (July), New Mexico Skiing (Dec); 2011:



Have you done anything on my list?  What are a couple of things on your own list?






Scripture Memory 2011


Scripture memory is something that I just haven’t been as dedicated to as I would like.  There have been times that I’ve memorized a lot of Scripture, but then there are also times where I’ll go literally years without memorizing anything.  I don’t really know how to put what I’m trying to say into words, but I the way that those verses that I have memorized pop into my head when I need them most.  There are so many verses that I have memorized that are so special to me.  One of the things that I wanted to do this year was start to memorize Scripture again.

When I was a freshman in college, I participated in my first Beth Moore Bible Study with some other girls from my church.  Since then, I’ve done some other of her studies, and the Lord has really grown me through them.  I added the Living Proof Ministries (Beth Moore’s ministry) Blog to my Google Reader (RSS feed) a while back, and a few days before Christmas I saw that they have a Scripture memory program through the blog.  This was exactly what I was looking for!  I’m really excited to be a part of this because it will give me the accountability that I need to actually follow through with my commitment.

We’re going to be memorizing two verses a month, and you just sign in on the 1st and 15th to tell which one you’re choosing.  Here’s the link in case you’re interested in learning more:  I ordered the little spiral, and it’s been great so far!

Here are the two verses I’ve chosen this month:

You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” Psalm 65:11 (NLT)

“Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” Lamentations 3:22-24 (NIV)


I just wanted to share this with you because it’s something I’m excited about doing.