Thursday, July 27, 2017

Deputie Baby #6 On the Way :)

I am so blessed and so honored to be pregnant again with my precious child #6. 




I have been working on this post for some time before I posted it since we wanted to wait a while before letting people know we are pregnant this time around. 

This pregnancy I have some goals.

I usually gain 50lbs but this time I want to gain 25-35.
Here's my goals:



  • Exercise just about every day for at least 15 minutes
  • Stretch every night
  • Take a bath at least twice a week
  • Have a green smoothie once a Day 
  • Take naps!

Here's a quick recap of the pregnancy thus far:
Week 2: I knew I was pregnant and I knew the moment I conceived. I felt it.
Week 3: Some nausea and EXHAUSTION. Took a test and got a positive immediately. Also threw up my first time right before Sunday worship at church. 
Week 4: Some nausea in waves. Threw up Sunday morning. 
Week 5: Some nausea. Threw up a few times
Week 6: EXHAUSTED! Like cannot stay awake exhausted. Ridiculous. Waves of nausea, but not terrible. 


Praying about what this season of life looks like for our family since I am requiring 2-3 naps a day (seriously). 

God is good. I need His patience and endurance! 
Oh Lord, fill me with Your Spirit! 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Review: Activa Products Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit

I remember several of the "paper mache" projects I made growing up. I remember mixing glue and water to get just the right ratio, cutting hundreds of strips of newspapers and then dipping them in the messy solution to lay the foundation for my work of art. Once my dad and I created the Taj Mahal with styrofoam, paper mache and textured spray paint for a school project!



Our family got to explore the magic of the paper mache using a product made by Activa Products called Rigid Wrap and CelluClay Quik-Sculpting Kit which brought me right down memory lane from when I was growing up (but a lot less messy)! The kit comes with two 4inch rolls of Rigid Wrap, 8 ounces of CelluClay and some instructions for 12 potential products. Activa also sent us their ebook called Active Products' Favorite Sculpture Kids Crafts.

What's unique about the Rigid Wrap is there is no guess work in mixing the perfect glue to water solution for you paper mache projects. You simply cut the paper into strips, dunk them into water, and they are ready to go. You can cut the strips into whatever shape or size you want creating even the most detailed projects. 




The Rigid Wrap paper is non-toxic and safe to use on faces (like we decided to do) if you want to make masks! It dries relatively fast (we let our masks dry 12 hours) and then your project is ready to paint or design how you would like!

Our project with the Rigid Wrap was facial masks of the kids and their friend! We had more then enough Rigid Wrap to make 10 or so masks. We made a half mask for each child and then a full mask on a separate day. 

We made our half masks, let them dry and then painted them.




Several days later, my husband (who obviously liked doing this far more then I did) thought it was necessary to do the masks over again now that he had "mastered" the Rigid Wrap art. 




We took out glitter, paint, and beads and let the kids spend the weekend designing their masks. 




Another paper mache-type product this kit included was CelluClay. Basically this a powder made from recycled paper. You mix it with water and then it's ready to use. It adheres to many types of surfaces and it's easy to add different textures or details to it to enhance your project. We made a volcano with this forming it around an old water bottle!

Pros:
- Easy to clean up!
- Very convient 
- Made an awesome project in less time then conventional paper mache 
- Pack came with plenty of material to do several projects
- Very conforming to any given surface

Cons:
Our BIGGEST issue with this product was the directions. The instructions that were included in the packaging were very confusing and left us without a clear understanding of what we needed to do to complete a project. We actually ended up needing to spend about an hour looking on the internet different people's directions on how they used the product. We wish the directions had more detailed step-by-step in using the product.





Would I recommend this product?
Absolutely! This product was a blast to use and work with!







Friday, July 21, 2017

How to Be a Maid of Honor




I believe I have been in about 8-9 weddings, two of which I had the privilege of being the maid of honor.

I remember picking the ladies I wanted in my wedding party. 
I took this choice VERY seriously. 
I not only wanted women who would help me plan and execute my wedding, but I wanted women whose (1) Relationship with the Lord and marriages I respected and wanted to emulate, (2) women who would tell me the truth even if they thought I would take it wrong, (3) women who would hold me accountable to my husband and if I came crying to them, they would kick me in the butt right back to my husband. 

So with these HIGH standards...

 I chose my maid of honor, Cristina. Always telling me the truth. Would give her very life for me. A marriage that I envied and studied far more intensely then I think she ever noticed. I could go to her with anything. The good, the bad, the ugly. A choice I will never regret making! :) Even though distance and different callings have put obstacles between us, I know heaven will be all the more sweet when we can swap all the stories of what the Lord has done. I know she still prays for my marriage, and I pray for hers also. She has forever impacted how my husband and I relate and worked to lay such a strong foundation for our marriage, I attribute our solidness to her. 

My next bridesmaid was Kara. I've never been one to have a "best friend", but I would count Kara as one of them. She was truthfully blunt with me all the time. She accepted me for exactly how I came. Rough around the edges. She helped smooth me out. She was one I could call and count on. Not only count on, she would always go above and beyond. Her giftings, character, personality, and past were similar. She understood me. She was Pastor's daughter, where I was coaches daughter. Another person I will never, ever regret putting in my wedding. I miss her terribly. More then I think she'll ever know.

Third was Kate. My best friend. Her walk with the Lord always seems to be just a step ahead of mine. She's always challenging me to hear the Lord's voice and step out in exactly what He wants me to do. She'll pray, man! Oh she'll pray! And she'll tell me what the Lord told her whether I like it or not. Her submission to her husband is astounding. Her loyalty to him, unlike anything I've seen before. And she's honest with me about the struggles her and her husband have, which encourages me! Her vulnerability, her rawness, and her strength in it all. I hope to have many, many more years of growing along side her.

Lastly was my kid sister Mariah. Putting her in my wedding was an act of God... Mariah and I never got along. Ever! I didn't even like her until she turned about 15 years old, and even then things were rough. But, it was God's sovereignty! Mariah and I are VERY close now. We were pregnant together, have kids the same age, and raise them together. We do everything together now. I praise the Lord for her in my life! 

I hope this illustrates my point.

Being chosen to be in a wedding party should mean SO MUCH MORE then just standing in a wedding. This is a marriage you're committing to praying over for the rest of your life. 

Having recently been in my sister's wedding as the Maid of Honor, I realized there's a lot of things my husband and I have established as far as the kind of maid of honor, best man, bridesmaid, or groomsmen we wanted to be. 

Here are some things to keep in mind:

(1) NOTHING is about YOU! - Don't like the colors? The dress and shoes too expensive? Will you NEVER wear them again? Do 4 inch heels sound very uncomfortable? Suck it up! This is her dream day, make it exactly what she wants, and do it with an excitement and joy in your heart. 

(2) However, your honest opinion IS important - Is there a road block you want to bring to her attention? Is she going to be disappointed when something fails or is too extravagant to be realistic? Are her invitations looking more like a little kids birthday party then a wedding? She needs to know! However, if she disagrees, then follow her lead.

(3) Notice and address the stress, the doubts, the fears: I think most of the work of the maid of honor is listening to the bride talk, cry, complain, be excited, be frustrated. She needs your ear, your shoulder, your time. Notice what she looks like when she's overwhelmed and see what you can say or do to lighten her load. 

(4) Think of what She needs, even if she doesn't think she needs it: Does she and her new husband need a few minutes alone in the back room to make out after their march away from the alter? Lead them right into the back room and guard that door until their done! Does she need a nice quiet night with her bridesmaids talking about the weather and watching Titanic just to get her mind off all the wedding agenda? Give it to her! Does she need to not be alone the week before her wedding? Clear out the kids room and make her a bed!

(5) The day of, nothing should get to them: "We ran out of food!" "The table cloths never showed up!" "There's no allergy free food!" Don't let any of these things get to the bride! Shield her! She only should be smiling and in complete bliss all day! Find a way to handle it. Between your crew of bridesmaids and groomsmen, you should be able to figure something out. Pool money together and go get Little Caesars! Run to the Thrift Store and get the best looking table cloths you can find! 





Strive to be a blessing. 

So much so, your bride will NEVER know what you labor, how much you did, just to give her peace of mind. 
It's such a rewarding-exhausting-honorable position!
Do it with joy!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Trust Fund Movie Review

When I think of a GREAT movie, I think of one with a wonderful plot that you simply must follow all the way to the end. I think of a movie full of all the elements of a perfectly balanced story: humor, drama and suspense. I think of characters that were so well developed, you feel like you get to know them and you're saddened when the movie is over because you feel like you've lost a friend. But mostly, I think of a movie that is so inspiring, it changes your worldview and motivates you to become better at something; a movie that has such a strong conclusion and underlying morals, that you're stirred up into action.

Trust Fund by Mapelle Films is a movie whose cinematographer/producer is actually a homeschool graduate (which is pretty awesome!). The movie attempts to modernize the "Prodigal Son" story from the Bible. True to the tale, the younger sibling takes off with a Trust Fund she stole from her Father's company and runs off to Italy to spend it as she sees fit, ultimately giving it all away to her boyfriend funding illegal activities he is involved in. Her older sister, Audrey, continues to work hard under her Father's employment while her kid sister, Reese, squanders the stolen money away.




Like the prodigal son story, the prodigal daughter finds her way back into her Father's arms and unconditional forgiveness. The older sister, Audrey, has a hard time forgiving her little sister for what she's done to their family and to their company. The Father is accused of being too soft on Reese and faces these accusations several times through the film.

Over all, this movie was put together very well! It didn't have that "lower class, budget film" feel. The acting was very professional and I can't think of a single bad actor off the top of my head. I thoroughly enjoyed these aspects of the movie.




Now let's talk plot. I followed the movie up to the point when the daughter returned home. After that, it felt like there were so many side plots it got confusing and was hard to resolve everything together at the end. I thought this was just me, so I watched it with a few of my friends and they had similar struggles.

As for the conclusion of the film, I was disappointed. There was such a perfect opportunity to unravel and pull together all that happened throughout the movie and I felt like the author of this film sold themselves very short. Reese was standing up to give a speech at her Father's wedding. She began to explain what every viewer has been anticipating the whole movie bringing a grand conclusion to the  journey we've been on together, but only a few words were spoken by Reese and then she rushed off the stage to embrace a boy whose character wasn't developed very well throughout the movie to tell him that she loved him.

So how would I rate this movie? I would give it 3 out of 5 stars. The acting and filming was exceptional, however the plot was confusing in the second half of the movie and the conclusion of the film was weak.

Some unique aspects of this film that are worth mentioning is it has a follow-up book called Love Was Near that can to be read after viewing. I did not read this book and therefore cannot speak on it.




Trust Fund also includes a study guide that I read through intended for small group study or one-on-one discipleship with a younger daughter or child. The questions in this study guide were deep and thought provoking. I was pricked by a few of them! The study guide includes the text of the Prodigal Son and brings you through the plot of the story with things to consider.





Friday, July 14, 2017

Chicken Pox!

The Deputie's have their immunity!
Woo Hoo!
I've been praying and waiting for this day for a LONG time!

And what better time to start it then on record breaking hot days here in our state?! ;)

It was a Tuesday and I noticed both Aryeh and Elias had what looked liked mosquito bites when they woke up. We just put the screen in their window so I suspected that maybe some buggers snuck in and I closed the window. After nap time, they had more spots!









At this same time I noticed two spots on myself that I thought nothing about.

Wednesday morning Aryeh woke up with 10ish spots and they were nice and round. Elias had 5-8. That's when I knew!

After canceling worship practice and the children's meeting that were to be held at our home that evening, we headed to the doctor's office who confirmed it was chicken pox. Interesting note, after the doctor spent time evaluating the photos I sent him over the following days, he said our breakout looks like a case that typically comes after exposed to a vaccinated child who "sheds" the chicken pox. No clue what that means long term, but thought it was worth remembering...


Anyways...

The next few days (Thursday-Saturday) both boys would have a few spots show up each day, but both had a very light case. I ended up getting sick with flu like symptoms, headaches, dizziness and fatigue for the whole week through the weekend.

Other then that, their spots crusted over and the neither the girls not Alex got any! 



I am curious to see if they got their immunities?!? A future blood test is definitely in order. 

AND WE SURVIVED! 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

*GIVE AWAY!!!* Large Family Living: Health Care

I have an entire page on my blog dedicated to Samaritan Ministries

It's truly the BEST option for a large family (and even a smaller family) when it comes to health care. 

There are no "networks" you're ensalved in, the monthly payments cap off once you have 3 children, and best of all it works! We've had every single one of our qualifying medical bills completely covered. 

The only vitamins and supplements I bother to buy are a multivitamin (usually through my husband's job's Health Savings Account money that is set aside for this type of thing), Vitamin D (for the winter months) and Vitamin C (for sicknesses or flu season). I usually get these from Costco or Shaklee. 

Medicines are not a thing really used in my home. I've made herbal tinctures and creams and salves for years and they've met almost all our needs. I now own a business that sells these very same products I've used for years and years. 






Some products our store carries include:

Fever, Cold and Flu Tincture
This is my most coveted item our shop carries. It's miraculous how God created these simple herbs to naturally reduce fevers and ease cold and flu symptoms. I have countless stories of how this tincture has saved my family!

Digestive Aid Tincture
Upset tummies, colic, indigestion, morning sickness, diarrhea girgles everything. 

Elder and Echinacea Tincture
This I literally carry around in my diaper bag and give it to my whole family whenever I feel they need an immune boost. This is probably our most versatile tincture!

Insomnia Tincture
Not only does this help you or restless kids settle down into a blissful sleep, but it is used for treating anxiety and depression as well! We have many testimonies of this tincture being used for this purpose. 


Garlic Tincture
This is great for everything again. Virus and bacteria fighting. We have testimonies of people using it to treat warts, stomach ulcers, foot fungus, cold sores, lots of things. 

Our store carries a few creams that are great to have on hand including our Best Selling Menthol and Magnesium Muscle Cream, Healing Cream, Bug Cream, and Booty Cream. We will soon be stocking our Eczema Cream which is incredible stuff! This cream was actually created for my nephew who has that sensitive white baby skin. A customer of ours requested some of the cream and was so impressed asked us to list it as a regular product!


We also have several essential oil roll-ons including our Immune Booster, Rise and Shine, Spot Treatment, Headache Away, and Calm Me Down.

We stock many other items that I would implore you to check out!! 

As far as Dental and Vision, we've never had insurance for either of these before, but we are looking into getting Dental insurance this year. In the past we simply paid for whatever procedures needed to be done using our HSA through my husbands work. 

______________________________________________

If you are interested in purchasing something from Ancient Medicine Cabinet LLC then I have a special promo code for all my bog readers: NOGREATERJOY2017 can be used in the promo slot at the checkout and you'll receive %15 off your entire order! Yay!!


I also have a giveaway for you!

You can receive a tincture of your choice (except for the garlic tincture) for free if you win this giveaway!

Please follow the directions and earn points to get a better chance at winning! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I will email the winner and announce them on my blog.
Then you can choose one of the following as your prize!



Friday, June 30, 2017

PHOTO BOMB







Twins Graduated Alpha Math U See!




Hail one Sabbath morning





BUSTED! These two hijacked my phone and took a LOT of selfies... this was my favorite.