Friday, December 28, 2012

Merry Christmas!

This Christmas seemed to creep up on me all at once. There was a million things I wanted to do this year with Wyatt that I didn't get to and decorations I didn't even get a chance to get up. Nick was a little disappointed with only having the small tree up this year instead of the big one, but it was all we could do in our small space. With having a baby our living space has shrunk. We have her bouncer, exersaucer, play gym, and basket of toys. There was no room for the big tree!

I have to admit I am still adjusting to life with two kiddos. I think if they were closer in age it would be a bit easier. Wyatt being almost five doesn't nap every day, and our dear little Josie doesn't seem to want to nap at all. So, that puts a damper on my to do list each day.

This year, since we had Josie, I wanted to take Christmas pictures of the kids. I am very pleased how they turned out. Who needs to pay tons of money on a photo shoot when you can do it yourself?! For the most part, my kids are very cooperative when doing pictures.

This was Josie's first Christmas, of course, and she was fun. She liked playing with the paper. She would tug at it, but needed help to really unwrap anything. Needless to say Wyatt enjoyed being a helper.

Christmas Eve we went to Candle Light service at our church. Then had Christmas morning with Wyatt and Josie. They woke up about 8am. We opened gifts, then we read the story of Jesus' birth out of Wyatts new Bible. Nick made french toast for breakfast as I preped the turkey to bake. Then my family came over and we had dinner together and exchanged gifts afterwards. It was a great day spending time with everyone.

Hope you had a wonderful Christmas!

In the World, But Not of the World: Plugged In

Wow. It's been a long time since I have posted. I had to take a break due to Dial-Up frustration. It seemed like most things worked okay except for loading my blog. But things have changed. We took a scary step into the world and got Hughes Net and Dish.

We didn't want TV due to content that just doesn't fit into our family values and time it takes away from quality family time, but we had to take cost effectiveness into account as well. It was cheaper to get Dish and Hughes Net's smallest package {Which is WAY faster than our dial up!} than it was to get the second step up for internet that would allow you to stream movies and other programming, such as family friendly shows, news, weather, and sports.

As soon as the satalite TV was set up we went in right away and locked out certain ratings and content so that we wouldn't be tempted to watch things we shouldn't.


Galatians 5:19-21 

19 Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, 21 envy,[a] drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.

It is a sad thing, but isn't TV consumed with all these listed above? And while we may not actually DO these things, we feel watching them on TV is just as bad so we locked them out. It isn't a perfect solution, things still miss the filters, but we do try. I'm reminded of the song we'd sing in Sunday school, O Be Careful Little Eyes which I find is a great self check for our behavior.


Romans 12:2 

2 Do not be conformed to this world,[a] but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

1 John 2:15

 15 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

It is so easy to be sucked into those kinds of things if we are not careful. We have a way of justifying it in our minds to make it "okay". So, to help guard ourselves we set up road blocks to keep us from viewing  programming that doesn't line up with what God would want us to watch. 

We have "cleaned house" so to speak with other areas of our entertainment library as well. DVD's and CD's that didn't match with our beliefs got boxed up and taken out of our house. The hardest part was getting over the money we spent on the the DVD's and CD's that we got rid of. For example, I had six seasons of Greys Anatomy that I paid at least $30 dollars for each. That's $180! Ouch! But, Greys has no place in my life anymore. And really, I haven't looked back!

I would challenge anyone who reads this to take a step back and look at what you watch on TV, what you listen to on the radio, even conversations that you take part in. Is it helping your relationship with God?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

No Sew Fleece Scarf

I was at Hobby Lobby the other night and spotted a clearance basket of scrap material in little rolls. I looked through it and found myself a pretty sweet deal. I got a 1/4 yard of grey fleece 60 inches long. I immediately thought of an idea: a no-sew scarf!

It took a total of 15 minutes to do. I could have finished sooner, but with two kids, that's not always possible. This was so easy, if I can do it, anyone can!

First, fold the material length wise in half.

Then cut the end that is not folded all the way down the length of the fleece in about one inch strips. Cutting to about a half an inch to the fold.

Then after it is cut tie the pairs together. I alternated back and front when I tied so that it was fuller.

Ta daaaa!

Not too shabby for a whopping .88 cents if I don't say so myself. I will definitely be keeping my eyes open for more remnants like this next time I go to the store!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Fall Trail Mix

I have a bake sale coming up and really wanted to make a trail mix. It sounded so fitting with the season to do a fall mix. So I started to think of what I wanted to include in it. It didn't take long to figure out what I wanted and I have to admit, it is one of the best I have ever had!

4 cups Golden Grahams
2 cups Peanut Butter Crunch
2 cups Pretzels
1 cup Reeces Pieces
1 cup Chocolate Chips
1 cup Peanuts
1 oz White Chocolate Baking Bar
2 tablespoons Coconut Oil
1/2 cup Powder Sugar

Mix Golden Grahams, Peanut Butter Crunch, Reeces Pieces,
Chocolate Chips, and Peanuts together.

In a small bowl, microwave Coconut Oil and White Chocolate
for about a minute and a half, stirring once until melted. Pour
over dry mixture. Stir to coat.

Sprinkle with Powder Sugar, stirring once again to coat.
Spread onto baking sheet or wax paper to dry.

Store in air tight container.

This makes approximately 12 cups of trail mix. My husband couldn't stop eating it! Such a yummy treat!


Thursday, October 4, 2012

Cloth Diaper Chronicles

We have come to the end of the road with diapering as we once knew and onto the unknown. I can't say it was a carefree feeling I felt inside, probably more like apprehension and fear when we reached the crossroads yesterday.

{J} is now four months old and I made a goal that when we have only one more bag of disposables left we would convert to our prefolds. {We have still only bought 1 package of newborn diapers ourselves, the rest that we have had were given to us!} We will save the one bag we have left for overnight and when we leave the house. At least for now.

It has been interesting so far. Yesterday, I was beginning to wonder what we were thinking. My pinning technique has a lot to be desired. Nick was on board, but now is starting to have second thoughts. I think these feelings can be attributed to inexperience and lack of confidence. Already today, I have noticed some improvement in my pinning skills. I have to say that the cloth diapers seem to be containing more than the Huggies we were using did!

There were a couple factors in our decision to cloth diaper. First, being cost. Reusing saves money. Period. Second, the land fills will thank us. Is it easier? Not really. There is more laundry involved. There is extra work in rinsing. Then there is storing dirty diapers until they can be laundered. All not so convienient, but over all, it is well worth the extra effort.

The biggest negitive side effect has been bulky butt. Her little tushie more than doubled in size due to the bulk of the cloth making her pants too tight. She also feels wet faster than with disposables. So she needs changed more. My hope is this will lead too faster potty training!

This is going to be challenging. But, I am hoping it will become easier as we go along. We shall see!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Filling a Void

I have been looking for something to fill a void in my family gallery wall. I didn't really have another picture to put up so I was thinking something more artistic. I decided to do a small canvas with our name on it. I had some cream and gold spray paint already so, I started taping off the canvas. {It is kind of ironic that most of the overall tone of the wall is gold, I never liked gold.}

I have to say doing things like this with kids around is a bit tricky. Note my 'S'. I am not very happy with it, but that is what happens when your four year old son decides to touch it while it is drying. He said he thought it was chocolate. Right. Ah, well. It adds character.

I think overall it turned out great. It adds another element to the wall. It ties in perfect with everything else and was simple and easy to make.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Tube Monsters

For some reason our son has a hang up on monsters. Not sure where that came from, but he likes anything monster related. So, the other day {W} and daddy created some monsters out of toilet paper roll tubes. Super easy, yet be warned. When crafing with daddy, things tend to be VERY messy. At least in my experience. But, fun nonetheless.

What you will need is:

                  Toilet Paper Tube


                  Googly Eyes

                  Fine Tip Marker

                  Glue Stick

Take your toilet paper tubes and pinch the top together to for two pointy ears. Then paint the tubes.

After the paint has dried take a glue stick and glue your googly eyes on then draw a face using the fine tip marker.

In no time at all you can create your very own monster family! Enjoy!

Monday, September 17, 2012

A MARBLEous Reward

We are trying something new in the Sposato household. A marbleous reward system. Positive reinforcement works great as long as it is consistent. I have found myself lacking in that department with the old system. For one of our discipline tactics we will take a toy away if {W} refuses to do something we ask. {Mostly for not picking up after himself.} Well, that is fine and dandy, but the problem I was having was remembering to give them back when he did something great.

So, to help both myself and {W} with this we decided to go to the Marble Reward System. For every good deed done, he gets a marble in a jar. When the jar is full, he gets a special treat. We can go for ice cream, go the the Wild {the Call of the Wild}, putt-putt golfing, and other similar outings. He can watch the marbles pile up and see how close he is to earning something special. {Not to mention they are pretty to look at!}

{DISCLAIMER: He doesn't actually have a full jar yet. This was filled for effect.}

Believe it or not, it is actually working! After trying to explain to him the process of what was to be expected,  how to earn a marble, and what would happen once the jar was full I was completely convinced it was all in vain. It was like throwing a rubber ball at a wall and expecting it to stick.

Five minutes later just before we were going to have lunch, {W} bounced into his chair and announced that all his toys were picked up and he was ready for lunch. What!? Did that just happen??? Then I realized that he was already working on his first marble. Well, I can get used to this!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Family Prayer Board

I have been wanting to create a way to post prayer requests that our family receives in a way that is visible for us to see daily and to help remind us who we need to pray for everyday. It had to be something that is easy to change and update.

I have been seeing message/ menu boards made with just a regular frame with scrapbook paper placed behind the glass. Dry erase markers are used to write on the glass. The more I thought about it the more I liked the idea for a Family Prayer Board!

The 8 x 10 frame I chose was $10 on sale at Hobby Lobby and I already had the scrapbook paper. Viola! Not too shabby!

A kind of neat side note I would like to share is the scavenger hunt I went on to find my new-in-package magnets that I wanted to put on the back so I could put it on the refrigerator. I looked long and hard for them without turning up anything. Finally, I sat down and said a little prayer asking God to help me find my magnets. {I know, seems so insignificant.}

Well, I said my prayer, I got back up and went downstairs to look one more time. After looking in a couple spots I decided I would look in a regular cardboard box that I had long forgotten what was even in it. Guess what I found! My magnets!!! See, no prayer is too small! I was ecstatic!

The down side: The magnets are not strong enough to keep the frame on the refrigerator. Oh, well. You can't have it all!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Soap Box Politics

My first time voting was in 2000. I remember being super excited and feeling so grown up. The election was between Al Gore and George W. Bush. It was the closest contest in presidential history with the Florida recount. There probably was a certain amount of negativity passed around and if Facebook was around it could have been worse, but I don't remember any of that.

I look at what elections have become since and it seems that it has progressively gotten worse with each election. How hard it must be for young people to feel encouraged to vote and be excited about it!

I really dislike Facebook during elections. I, myself, love a good debate and don't mind defending or sharing my beliefs. If you are not willing to back up what you post, then simply do not post it. What I also find frustrating is seeing my Facebook "friends" post political photos that are degrading, disrespectful, and sometimes exaggerated for effect. Those are insulting and offensive to those with different opinions and beliefs. Some so exaggerated  that they are misleading to those who haven't done their own research. Then there are the posts that are just stating opinions, but the comments under the post are full of name calling and other negative talk. Why? Does it make them feel better about themselves?

I have to admit the majority that I have seen that are like this are posted by my liberal "friends". I say, "friends" because a true friend would be mindful of others beliefs and opinions and respect them for that. They would not allow comments by others which are degrading or engage in debates negatively. That doesn't mean we can't disagree. There is nothing wrong with that and nothing wrong with a good friendly debate! But we have to treat others respectfully!

Lately, I have seen so many posts that are posted by my "friends" that have really bothered me. I am a firm believer of freedom of speech and the right of others to voice their beliefs and opinions. What I am finding hard to overlook is the ones that go beyond that. It is one thing to post political photos that support your position, but it is a whole other thing to post political photos that degrade and disrespect others. It is so distructive!

Even though these are not directly referring to me personally it does feel that way when I see "friends" posts that call conservatives: Tea baggers, crazy, nut jobs, stupid, idiots, racist, intolerant, haters, ignorant, small minded, and so on. Boy, they may not be specifically saying to me, "Lacey, you are a racist because you don't support President Obama, you are a intolerant hater because you believe in the Biblical definition of marriage, you are a tea bagging idiot for believing in our 2nd Amendment rights, and you are ignorant for being pro-life!" but it certainly feels like it. I have my reasons for what I believe just like anybody else. Just because I have different views doesn't mean I am any of what was stated above.

I find it extremely disrespectful to see these, especially from people I know! It turns me off to politics and the debate. If I was a new voter, I wouldn't want anything to do with it. I would feel pressured and influenced that if I were to vote, I had better vote in a way so that no one will think down on me or find me stupid! Why is the negative always louder than the positive? More influential? Why does it have to be: If YOU believe in this you are            ? Why can't it just be: I believe in              because of this.

Things to remember when expressing your beliefs:

Politics is a touchy subject. Polorizing even. Sometimes it is even the best thing to not respond or engage. Especially if you can't do it without allowing negitive banter. Right or left let's keep it clean and treat others like we would want to be treated.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Homemade Dish Soap

In an effort to save money and to rid our household of harsh chemicals I have been making my own cleaning products. My first experience was my own laundry detergent. I have since made my own soap scum remover. My latest endevor has been dish soap.

I looked for a long time trying to find a recipe that made the most sense and this recipe is the one I decided to try. It includes only four main components and was rather simple to make:

I used Arm & Hammer Washing Soda, found in the laundry detergent aisle, Kirk's Castile bar soap, Tea Tree Oil essential oil, and white vinegar. The recipe I followed actually used liquid Castile soap, but I used the bar soap and just grated it. I also doubled my recipe so I don't have to make it that often.

Make sure to let it cool completey and stir well to make sure the soap dissolves into the mixture. There won't be a lot of suds, but I noticed I really didn't have any. I could see the soap was mixed well in the water, but suds have always made me feel like the soap was "working".  I have read, however, that you may have a better chance of suds if you have soft water. We have hard water so that is probably my problem. 

Cost wise this was very inexpensive. The Castile soap was $3.39 for three bars. So one recipe would be $.56. The washing soda is $3.24 for 55 oz. and we are only using 2 TBS! So you can see how extremely minimal the cost is to make.

I thought it worked pretty good. My dishes seemed to come out clean. I will keep you updated as I use it more, if you try it yourself please feel free to comment and share your experience!

Hope you enjoy!

UPDATE: In an effort to mix it better, I ended up making really foamy. I thought that the foam would go down like usual, but it stayed. I have still been using it. It is a little harder to squeeze out since the foam is so thick. Not sure if that was suposed to happen or not!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Josie is 3 Months Old!

This was another fast month! Josie is doing wonderfully. She has started to laugh and smile more. As of last Sunday she discovered her voice! It was funny to watch her because you could tell by her facial expression that it surprised her. She is starting to see and follow you as you walk by her. Much more aware of her surroundings.

{3 Months Old!}

She is back to sleeping practically the whole night. She usually goes to bed between 9-10pm and will sleep until 4-5am and then will go back down again. I know what a blessing that is and am so very thankful for sleep! Wyatt was the total opposite and got up every 2-3 hours every night for MONTHS!

The one thing that I worried about before we had Josie was if we had a girl getting clothes for her. Yes, it would be fun to shop, but that is also a huge expense. Silly me to worry! She has more than enough clothes to last her until she is probably a year old and we only had to buy a few ourselves!

Diapers: same story. We have bought only two packs of newborn diapers and that is it! We still have two and a half boxes that haven't been used yet! That has been a huge help since we were planning on using cloth diapers, but she hasn't been able to fit them until now! It has been amazing how God has provided everything we have needed through wonderful friends, family, and Church family!

Today we put her in cloth diapers for the first time! I still have to get the folding and pinning technique down though. I am so scared I am going to pick her! I know it is just a matter of confidence and I will get there.

{Thank goodness for the cover! You can't see
my terrible fastening job!!}

Josie's hair is getting SO long! It is in her eyes and past her shoulders already! It is just a  matter of time and we will be able to pull it back into a pony tail! Looking at Wyatt's photo albums she has much more hair than he did and he had a lot!

{It's a little frizzy after laying on it after her bath...}

{She is wearing the overalls that I had
when I was a baby!}

She is our real life baby doll! She loves to be changed: diaper and clothes. She smiles the whole time. She likes her baths too. She is so good tempered and easy going. It is so hard to believe it has been three whole months already!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Going to the Dentist: Wyatt's 1st Visit!

Saturday we went to Saginaw for one of my family reunions and while we were there and just about ready to go Wyatt hit his mouth on the top of one of the pic-nic tables. At first we thought he just bit his lip a bit, but after looking further we noticed a loose tooth. It wasn't really loose, but loose enough for us to be concerned. We figured if it didn't tighten up on its own we would call on Monday for a dentist appointment.

Well, today is Monday and it was still loose. So I called and set him up for an appointment to check out his loose tooth and get his very first cleaning. I have to say it went really well! He took it pretty serious at first and wouldn't smile for me. {Yep, I am one of "those" moms who take pictures at dentist appointments!}

{Not too sure}

{Got his tooth brush!}

{No cavities!}

It took a little coaxing to brush his teeth with the spinning tooth brush, but he did it. He didn't like the bubble gum tooth paste, but he did like the water sprayer. He really did a great job. After the cleaning the dentist came in and checked for cavities. NO CAVITIES!!! Yay! He did find that he had two other top teeth that were a little loose in addition to the one we found, but they weren't as loose. He said he should be find just take it easy for the next few days and keep an eye out for little "pimples" above his teeth on the gums and inside his upper lip and if there was any nerve damage it may turn a little brown. Other than that no worries! So thankful for that!