Welcome and Blessings!

Thank you so much for stopping by! I have named this blog "Running to the Cross" because that is what I often find myself doing...running to be with my Lord Jesus! I often cover many aspects of life on my blog, as it is my journal. I used to write things down in all sorts of notebooks, but my writings would soon be lost. So I decided that it was time to start a blog and share my thoughts and ideas with others. Many topics you will find here are prayers, homemaking and organization, children and pregnancy, funny stories, and the challenges of parenting and motherhood. If you enjoy my blog and leave me a comment, you are likely to have me visit! I love meeting others and gleaning from the lives of others. May you be blessed! Your friend in Christ, Heather

Sunday, July 12, 2009

6 days late, but God's perfect timing...

Drum roll, please!


JoyHannah Jubilee....

Born: June 29th, 2009 at 11:55 p.m.

Weighing in at 8 lbs. 0 oz.
Length: 21 1/4 inches

As you all may know, I was quite anxious for the birth of our 8th baby. I had experienced complications with a trip to the ER at 14 weeks and another trip at 33 weeks & 5 days with premature labor.

Well, my goal dates came and went. Then my due date came and went. I tried everything to go into labor as my emotions and my physical well being was not the best. I expected an early baby, but that was not God's plan.

So finally, Monday evening, June 29 just after finishing supper I felt my first contraction (probably around 8 or 8:30 p.m.)....a good, STRONG contraction. With that first contraction I felt the baby descend into my pelvis about 1 inch. I alerted my husband, and then with contractions about 10-15 minutes apart, helped my daughter clean up dinner dishes (I did pause with each contraction). My husband wanted to work in the shop until about 10 p.m., but I wasn't so sure about his "plan"...

I could tell that the contractions were getting stronger and stronger, so I told my son that he needed to tell his dad that we needed to get ready and GO, NOW!!! to my midwife's home (where I was planning to deliver). NOTE: My midwife lives 1 1/2 hours away, so it was essential that we worked quickly to get things packed in the van, including the children.

We got things together and were ready to leave at 10 p.m. I called my mom, who had been calling me everyday asking the same question, to let her know that contractions had begun and we were headed out. Then once we hit the road, I called my dear friend, and we talked nearly the entire trip.

You see, her plan was to "distract" me so I didn't notice how strong the contractions were or how well they were working... although, I must say, those contractions were working VERY WELL!!! And I kept telling her, that yes, they hurt and yes, they were working! So, during our conversation we laughed, and enjoyed our time on the phone...

On the home stretch to the midwife's house, I ended the call with my friend and called my midwife to let her know that we would be arriving soon.

At 11:30 p.m., we pulled in and parked our van at my midwife's home, then my water broke... (of course, in the seat of the van!) Thankfully, clear water...

I made it upstairs to the bedroom where I was going to deliver, used the bathroom, was checked by my midwife to find out that I was dilated to 8 c.m. I had planned on using the birthing stool for this delivery, but just after my midwife checked me, I had another contraction, one that dilated me to 10 c.m. and gave me to urge to push (as I could feel the baby's head coming down!).

My husband had stepped out of the room for just a minute to check on the children and was urgently called back up so that he could see the delivery of his 8th child. Once he came back in the room, she was crowning... and with the next few pushes (less than 5 minutes) she was out!
Perfectly formed, breathing and looking around, but not crying.

Our 6th daughter... WOW! Six girls!!! One more daughter to sew for, one more daughter that will get her hair fixed by mom, one more daughter to marry off... WOW!!!

The afterbirth pains were AWFUL!!! My contractions felt better than the afterbirth pains. I went from "superwoman" as my friend was calling me to "SUPER WIMP!!!" I even had to be helped to the bathroom! But thankfully, with the rest of the night ahead of me to sleep, and with the nourishment I received, I began to feel better and better. And today, I feel great... my only problem now is my blood pressure.

I am currently dealing with postpartum high blood pressure. It is not edema, and doesn't seem to get better with low carbs or low sodium... My mother had this same thing after she had me and eventually her's went away. I am hoping that this is all hormonal and will go away soon, too!

Right now, my blood pressure has leveled out to be around the same numbers all the time. It is not super high, but I will continue to monitor it. If it does not resume back to normal soon, it will mean a trip to the doctor's office.

My prayers are that it will get better with moderate exercise and a healthy diet. But, since high blood pressure runs in my family, I may end up needing medication... and hopefully my experience with medication will be better than my mom's as she has struggled with finding the right combination of meds to control her blood pressure.

Thank you again for your prayers! And when things settle down here, I may start posting again... but times are busy!


P.S.: C, (you know who you are, but I will only use your first initial)... I sent you and email a few days back! Hope to talk soon!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Thank YOU!!!!

Thank you for your prayers and support through this time of bed rest. I am officially off bed rest and am able to return to my normal duties.

We are still waiting for our wiggly little one to enter this world. I am grateful for the extra time that I have been granted (by my LORD and Saviour), and continue to be thankful that I am still waiting.WOW! Bed rest really changes the heart of the impatient pregnant woman! Of course, I know what it is like to have a baby early and once you experience that, you find that you are more patient to wait for the due date!

I have much to accomplish in the next few weeks and I also feel as I have accomplished much in my time of bed rest...

I was able to complete my nursing nightgown (although I would like to make a few changes yet) and I also made each one of my daughters a new dress.... all of this done in 2 days!!! I will post pictures when time allows, but for now I must get busy so that I can fold all of the laundry and wash up the dishes so that I am ready for this new little baby that may enter this world at any time!


Tuesday, May 19, 2009


Well, so much for posting my monthly menu plan. I do have mine in tact, but I will probably not be posting the rest of it... at least not for this month.

Last Sunday (a week & 2 days ago) I showed signs of going into labor early. So after checking with my midwife and a trip to the hospital, I have been on bedrest since.

If you remember correctly, my last baby came just a few days after hitting the 36 week point.

It seems to have all started with a hectic week and 3 stings from a hornet or something while directing my boys in the garden on Saturday. They tilled my garden then planted my tomatoes & peppers.

So here I am today, trying to make it until 36 weeks so I can have my midwife deliver me...

Just 1 more week to go, and then I will resume light housework & cooking, but gardening will have to be for my boys as I still have beans to plant & a few other things. Thankfully my husband is putting in raised beds for my beans in my "secret garden"... I am also thrilled that I have volunteer pumpkins already growing in my main garden, but I need to have canteloupe, watermelon, cucumbers and a few other things planted yet...

So, prayers are greatly appreciated as I wait and stay planted on my behind.

However, I have taken delight in crocheting and some sewing that I haven't been able to do until now. My newest project is a nursing nightgown for myself as I have already crocheted baby booties, an infant hat, and 3 pot holder hot pads...

Blessings friends!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Monthly Menu Plan

I have my monthly menu plan planned. However, I am not currently able to post the entire thing as it is written out on my menu calendar because I still need to enter the rest into my computer and I don't have the time RIGHT NOW to do it. But I WILL DO IT and then will update this post with the rest of my menu plan.

But since I know that some of you ARE following my monthly menu plan, I will post what I have FOR THIS WEEK (so far) and update at a later time, probably this evening.

Thank you for your patience!

Menu Plan: May, Week 1

SUNDAY (May 3):
B: Crunchy Oat bars, popcorn
L: baked bean, deviled eggs, brownies (church meal)
D: Leftovers or Sandwiches

MONDAY (May 4):
B: Old-fashioned Oatmeal
L: LO Enchiladas, sandwiches, chips
D: Baked Chicken, garlic potatoes, green beans or veggie, rolls

TUESDAY (May 5):
B: Scones w/milk & eggs
L: Sandwiches, chips & dip
D: Spaghetti w/smokies & broccoli, breadsticks

B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: LO Spaghetti w/smokies & breadsticks
D: Chicken Fried Rice w/broccoli or Italian veggies

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: LO Chicken fried Rice
D: Breakfast

FRIDAY (May 8):
B: LO Breakfast
L: Sandwiches
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

B: Coffee Cake, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Buffalo wings, potato salad, veggie, homemade rolls

SUNDAY (May 10):
B: Crunchy Oat bars, popcorn
L: Dinner w/friends (side w/dessert?)
D: LO Buffalo wings & potato salad

Abbreviation... I know there are some of you who may look at my abbreviation with a question mark, so LO stands for leftover... it is just much quicker to type LO than leftover!

Have a blessed week in the LORD! I have much to do, and not much time to post. I plan to post my latest two dresses for my daughters soon, maybe even tonight. We will see as my youngest daughter has been fighting me every night for the last few days to go to sleep (I rock her because otherwise she wakes the other children up in our bedroom upstairs.)


Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Things to get done before baby's arrival...

I am sooo overwhelmed right now with the things that I must do before this baby arrives that I thought that maybe sharing what I am experiencing right now would possibly ease a little of my tension. I would also ask that as you read through my list that you would remember me (and my family) in your prayers as we try to tackle this list (by God's grace) and prepare for a new addition in our home...

1) Spend time each day in the Bible and prayer... I really need to work on this!!!

2) Clean my home from top to bottom (yes, really!). I am expecting company shortly after our baby's arrival and I will not be doing much after the delivery. I really desire to have a clean, comfortable, and inviting home for them to stay in (and this is what my husband wants). Unfortunately, as I have browsed other's cleaning plans, they just don't work for me. I can't clean my home in a day's time, and not even in a week's time (I don't think).

We have a very large home to clean (we don't own it), not including the basement which is a project in itself. If you were to do a walk through my home, you would start at the mudroom, then kitchen (off the kitchen is the office and screened in porch), leaving the kitchen you enter the hallway, living room, and bathroom. Then, to go upstairs you leave the living room and enter the hallway(again) which houses the stairs, and come to another hallway. On the right is the bathroom, linen closet, guest room, turn corner and you have boy's room, then girl's room. You turn around and walk back down the girls hallway to our room (walking toward the stairs) on the right (just opposite of the guest room).

I have posted a few cleaning lists and they work, for a short time, but I am still struggling to get it all done. At this point and time, I am just looking for a way to get my body to obey the command to "get up and work" while chasing a very busy toddler, and guiding my older children as they do a few jobs themselves, all the while reminding them that our new puppy does not need to go out every 5 minutes....

3) Plan a menu for the next 2 months, this is an easy one for me as I have no problem figuring out what to fix. We buy in bulk, cases of food (literally) so my freezer is stocked. We also have deer meat that we can grind for tacos and such.

4) Plant my garden. I have planted my onions, I have tomatoes & peppers growing slowly in my mudroom, and I have planted a few potatoes but I have several more yet to plant. My "main" garden is ready for the tomatoes, peppers, squash and herbs (I also have another herb garden, but will plant herbs in my main garden in hopes to keep the deer out), but I have not yet gotten the other garden plots ready for the tender crops like beans, lettuce, peas, radishes, carrots, and other things... I know that many of these things need to be planted now, but with the rain that we have had it is literally impossible. Thankfully, we got a Mantis rototiller this year that I can use, as well as my boys... we got a really good deal because the place we got it from couldn't get it started!!! All it was was a lose spark plug!!!

5) Finish up homeschooling... We have another portfolio review coming up in May, so I must get the portfolios done and ready for that time.

6) Make my girls some more dresses (play dresses) as they have most certainly worn out about everything they have except church dresses, and a couple others. You see, I refuse to buy something that I already have the fabric for and my dresses take very little "time" considering the time I would take to look for more. I will also try to take pictures as I go, and post them eventually.

So I guess what I am looking for is a way to get up before everyone else does to spend time with God, clean my home totally and completely while chasing a toddler and getting my children to finish the tasks they have been given, homeschool, prepare meals & make all the bread we eat, get my menu planned, till and plant my gardens, and sew all at the same time!!!! Any suggestions? Remember, I also need my sleep or I am not good for the next day. And I can't be stressed too much or I end up with a migraine and another day lost.

Am I crazy for having so much to do? How did I get so behind? Where is Mary Poppins when I need her? (O;

I am going to put these things before God in prayer and aim to redeem the time. You will probably not see too much from me for the next couple of months as I will be busy. Please, when you think of me, say a prayer for strength, productivity and patience for the unexpected.

And all of this has to be done before my 9 weeks or whatever the time the baby comes is up.


Thursday, April 16, 2009

FREEBIES From Homeschool Freebie of the DAY!!!

Here are some great resources that are available through the weekend! Here is the email I received requesting that I not only get the word out, but tell you of the wonderful resources available for the next several days...

Just a quick note to let you know that TOMORROW'S homeschoolfreebieoftheday resource on Paul Revere's Ride (the 234th anniversary of which is this Saturday) turned out to be MUCH bigger than we originally announced in this week's "Heads Up" email.
We sorta got carried away with this, and actually ended up with FOUR wonderful resources all related to Revere and the history surrounding his midnight ride. Here's the complete rundown:

Listen My Children (MP3 audio) -
FIRST UP up this a great half hour audio story about
Revere's long life and influence, including the events of
that fateful night, as originally dramatized on the radio
program "Cavalcade of America", in December, 1952.

"Listen My Children" Listening Guide (PDF ebooklet) -
Next, you'll want to use this PDF discussion guide with
background info and questions to accompany the above audio program.

Paul Revere's Ride (MP3 audio) - Next, we have a SECOND
classic audio for you: A wonderful dramatic performance of
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's classic poem,
"Paul Revere's Ride" as performed by Frederic March.
If your kids have never heard it, they are missing
out on one of the quintessential American poems. Give it a listen!

And FINALLY, we also have a neat PDF art study lesson focusing
on paintings & sculptures depicting Paul Revere (as well as
the Minutemen), courtesy of Yes You Can! Publications.
This is lots of fun and a great way to combine history
with art appreciation & hands-on activities to boot.

Again, ALL of these resources will be featured on our site
tomorrow (Friday) and through the entire weekend.

So, we're sitting here thinking "Wow. This is a really nice
package"... and "This would be a great resource to introduce some
first-time visitors to our site -- IF we can round some up."
So... we thought we'd just ask YOU, our faithful
readers & supporters, for a little favor on Friday morning.

Could you please take a moment tomorrow to get the word out
to other homeschoolers about this package of resources that we
have available through this weekend?
Just an email note to your homeschooling friends or local
support group... a post on your blog... a "tweet"
or a "digg"... or WHATEVER networking thing you you can do
to help spread the word would be greatly appreciated.
Just send 'em to
-- They will thank you, and we will too.
As always, we truly appreciate your being with us, and hope
you are enjoying and will continue to enjoy the resources we
make available here.
Thanks, and have a super weekend!
Your Friends,
The Erskine Family

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Quick Clean-Up List (for floors)

Okay, so here is ANOTHER LIST... Did I tell you that I am a list maker? I make list after list, usually to help my children get things done.

This list is supposed to be used throughout the house. It is a FLOORS ONLY list. I created it specifically with my children in mind.

UPDATE: Just wanted to let you know that I gave this list to my almost 12-year-old son and he went to town! What I like about this list is that all he has to do is the next thing on the list, usually when he is finished there are only a few oddball items that he has to deal with. He also doesn't always use it for EVERY room, if he is helping me clean the upstairs, then he just uses it for the upstairs rooms. I was pleasantly surprised last evening when I walked upstairs and saw the difference he had made up there.

1. Go to each room and pick up laundry to take to basement (or laundry room).
2. Take the lego bucket to each room and pick up legos.
3. Take the crayon bucket to each room and pick up crayons.
4. Collect books in each room and put on bookshelf.
5. Gather all shoes and take to mudroom shelf (or shoe closet).
6. Take the pencil bucket to each room and pick up pencils.
7. Gather all dishes in each room and put in kitchen sink (or empty dishwasher).
8. Gather all coloring sheets in each room and put in crayon bucket with crayons.
9. Gather all girls’ toys in each room and take to girls’ bedroom.
10. Gather all boys’ toys in each room and take to boys’ bedroom.
11. Take linking cubes/counting bears bucket to each room and collect linking cubes & counting bears, then take to homeschool area.
12. Gather all coats in each room & hang in coat closet.
13. Gather all blankets, fold and put in living room.
14. Gather all game pieces, puzzle pieces, marbles, and any other small pieces and put in bucket for miscellaneous items (to be put away).
15. Gather all hangers in each room and hang in coat closet.
16. Gather all old newspapers in each room and put in paper basket.
17. Go to each room with trash bag and gather trash in trash bag.
18. Gather school papers in each room and give to Mom to file away.
19. Gather up any other items that you don’t know what to do with and ask Mom about those items.
20. Finally, sweep/vacuum all floors.

There you have it, another cleaning list. I'm sure that in the next several weeks I may come up with more!!!


Bedroom, Bathroom, Closet & Hallway Organization

Here are some lists I just created for my own use that I thought you might find helpful. We have been working on our Spring Cleaning this week, so that I have an orderly home in time for the baby's arrival.

I am not sure I will make it to my deadline to get it all done this week as I am not moving as fast these days and the cooler weather doesn't help. But I am aiming for success, and plan to achieve it ASAP!!!

10 Steps to Bedroom Organization
1. Remove Clutter
2. Remove Misplaced Items
3. Remove Trash (including broken items that cannot be fixed)
4. Remove Dirty Laundry
5. Remove Boxes of Stored Items from Closets
6. Straighten Hanging Items in Closet
7. Make Beds
8. Place other Items that belong in the room in such a way that they will not be IN the way.
9. If needed, provide baskets for storage.
10. Sweep & Mop Floors, Wash Windows, Apply Window Treatments.

8 Steps to Bedroom Closet Organization
1. Remove all items from floor and shelves & place on a flat surface like a bed or table (or floor for shoes).
2. Wipe shelves.
3. Sort through items on flat surface only keeping the items that you WILL use.
4. Put seasonal items (for opposite season) on shelves above hanging items.
5. Sort through hanging items, keeping only things that you wear.
6. Hang like items together (dresses, shirts, slacks, coats, etc.).
7. Sweep & Mop Floor of Closet.
8. Replace shoes or other floor items back in their places.

5 Steps to Linen Closet Organization
1. Remove all Items from Closet and place neatly on a flat surface like a bed or table.
2. Sort Items by Category (sheets, towels, blankets, toiletries) & remove all other items that don’t belong.
3. Assign Shelves for each Category
4. Match up like items and replace on shelves
5. Sweep & Mop Closet Floor.

10 Steps to Bathroom Organization
1. Remove all dirty laundry from bathroom, sort in baskets, & take to laundry room.
2. Set all Shelves, Hampers, Trash Cans, Scales and other floor items outside of bathroom.
3. Clear all Flat surfaces of Clutter removing misplaced items.
4. Scrub shower wall, toilet, sink, bathtub, & baseboard.
5. Wipe Walls, Window Sills & Mirror.
6. Straighten Medicine Cabinet.
7. Wash Shower Curtain, bleaching if necessary.
8. Sweep & Mop Floor esp. around toilet.
9. Replace Items that belong in Bathroom (including shower curtain).
10. Wash Windows & Apply window treatments (curtains).

5 Steps to Hallway Organization
1. Remove all items that don’t belong in hallway and return to their homes.
2. Clear and Straighten any tables or shelves of Clutter & dust.
3. Sweep & Mop floor.
4. Wash windows & window sills & apply window treatment.
5. Hallways are a thoroughfare through your home, don’t allow the hallway to become disorganized again by taking 5 minutes a day to pick it up.

I plan to make up list for the living room, kitchen and any other room I can think of soon!


Thursday, April 2, 2009

Gardens, Dresses & Menus....

It is very uncommon for me to make more than one post in a day... or even in a week or lately, month. However, my youngest daughter is asleep and my husband is working late in his shop, so here I am... posting again. (Besides I just baked a loaf of bread and it does have to cool before I put it into a bag ;O).)


I still have gardening fever, unfortunately I have not much energy to do the physical work that is involved due to my pregnancy (I've made it to my 3rd trimester!!!).

But, I did plant seeds in the little jiffy peat pellet green houses that we purchased from Wal*Mart, and I have seedlings!!! YEAH!!! I have already planted 6 little greenhouses that house 72 peat pellets... now that's a lot of plants, but I have planted flowers for my flower gardens, as well. Next will be marigolds, as I have 2 more jiffy peat pellet greenhouses to plant.

I read just the other day that tomatoes also like growing with marigolds, it said to put about 2-3 marigold plants right next to your tomatoes. Marigolds are supposed to keep away certain bugs, also. So I am growing a wide variety of tomatoes, peppers (from hot to sweet), several kinds of deer resistant flowers, herbs, and some heirloom "fruits" like garden huckleberries, the wonder egg plant, and also ground cherries (or husk tomatoes... tastes like pineapple?). I am still waiting on my lavendar to sprout, but I read on the label that it can take up to a month to sprout so, I still have a few days to wait and see.


In the first picture (with my four silly daughters), I made the dresses that the girls with the pigtail braids are wearing. The one that is all in one print is simply a T-shirt dress (I made the T-shirt) with a gathered skirt at the bottom. That dress took me 1 1/2 hours to make last Saturday (her birthday), so that dress is the "official" birthday dress this year.

My other daughter (the tallest one) is wearing a re-made skirt, changed into a jumper dress... if you understand that. I had made the 4-tier skirt for her several months back and it wouldn't stay up even with a tie around the waist (which had to be tied so tight that it hurt). So I cut a bodice out of a short ladies denim jumper that I got for free at church (no one wanted the jumper because it was way too short, so one day I looked closely at it and thought that it could be made into something that one of my girls could wear). Then I sewed up the bodice, and used bias tape around the arm holes and neck, and finished off by sewing the bodice to the skirt. It took me 30 minutes!!! So, within one day, I had made (& re-made) two dresses. After going so long without sewing, I was elated because frankly, I LOVE TO SEW!!!

Then, when we arrived home on Sunday after church, my other daughter came to me with big puppy-dog eyes and asked me for something to wear... So, again, I thought... I can make her a dress, too!!! So I searched through my fabric scraps, found several pieces that coordinated well together, and asked my daughter what she liked. She picked out the primary color animal prints and I whipped up another dress for her. I think it took about an hour and a half also.

However, a few things to know about my dresses are:
1) They are usually quick and easy.
2) They are not elaborate.
3) The T-shirt top is made out of knit fabric and is only 2 pieces.
4) I sew the seams 2-3 times to ensure a long-life for the dress.
5) Most of the dresses I make are play dresses (or they usually end up that way).
6) I use oxy-clean in just about every load of laundry!!!

For any who are interested in the T-shirt top, I would be glad to share my secret. I will even try to get some pictures of the top before if it is sewn...it is super easy!!! However, you probably won't find the pattern in a store as i usually make my own. I seek simplicity and ease, though I can make a "real" dress but those are usually for me. CO;

I have developed a system or formula that may work for anyone who tries it, just as long as you eat like we do!!! Ha ha!! But it does seem to work for me, so here goes:

Sundays: Meals vary as we have fellowship meals the 1st & 3rd Sundays of each month, so I plan what items I am going to take each week (usually the same thing), 1 hot dish, 1 cold dish, & 1 dessert. On off weeks, we eat sandwiches at church before going home (1 1/2 hour trip home), or if we stay home something easy.

Mondays: Roast, ham, or chicken, with potato or mac & cheese, veggie or salad, rolls.

Tuesdays: Italian or Mexican every other week.

Wednesdays: Use up the roast from Monday's meal (usually BBQ sandwich on homemade roll, stir fry, or fried rice w/leftover meat), potato salad or chips (w/BBQ) & veggie

Thurdays: Alternate Breakfast, quick pasta dish w/marinara & salad, & chicken patties or grilled chicken w/salad & potato.

Fridays: Pizza or Stromboli w/salad, soda, & movie night

Saturdays: Crockpot meal or Oven casserole w/veggie
Here is my menu for an entire month... beware this will be a long post!!

Menu Plan: April, Week 1
SUNDAY (March 29):
B: French breakfast puffs, popcorn
L: Deli Meat sandwiches, chips
D: Leftovers from Saturday night

MONDAY (March 30):
B: French breakfast puffs, birthday cake
L: Deli Meat sandwiches, chips & dip, rigatoni (for mom)
D: Chicken patties, chips

TUESDAY (March 31):
B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips & dip, potato salad
D: BBQ chicken sandwiches, potato salad, lettuce salad, mac & cheese

B: Banana Muffins, milk, eggs??
L: Sausage & Noodles w/marinara sauce, salad & breadsticks
D: Tacos & Burritos, salad, chips, salsa

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: Sandwiches, chips
D: Pigs-in-a-blanket chili dogs, chips

B: Crunchy Oat bar (cereal), milk, eggs
L: Leftover pigs-in-a-blanket & chili
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

B: Coffee Cake, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Grilled Deer Steak, baked potato, salad, homemade rolls

Menu Plan: April, Week 2
B: Crunchy oat bars, popcorn
L: Deviled eggs, baked beans, brownies (church meal)
D: Chicken patties, baked beans, chips (or popcorn)

B: Scones, milk, eggs
L: Rigatoni/noodles w/sauce Or Leftover chicken patties
D: Chicken, garlic potatoes, veggie

B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips
D: Meatball sandwiches, chips, salad

B: Muffins, milk, eggs??
L: Leftover Meatball sandwiches
D: BBQ chicken sandwiches, macaroni salad, veggie

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: Leftover BBQ Sandwiches, macaroni salad
D: Breakfast w/scrapple

FRIDAY (10):
B: Leftovers from Thursday’s nights breakfast
L: Ham salad w/crackers, deviled eggs
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

B: French Breakfast puffs, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Grilled or Broiled Chicken, mac & cheese, salad, homemade rolls

Menu Plan: April, Week 3
SUNDAY (12):
B: Crunchy oat bars, popcorn
L: Dinner at the Church Family's home
D: Leftovers or Sandwiches

MONDAY (13):
B: Scones, milk, eggs
L: Chicken Patty Sandwiches & chips
D: Pork Roast, garlic potatoes, veggie

B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips
D: Tacos & Burritos, salad, chips, salsa

B: Muffins, milk, eggs??
L: Peanut butter & Jelly sandwiches w/mac & cheese
D: Pork Fried Rice, veggie

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: Leftovers or sandwiches
D: Noodles, Rigatoni, tortellini & sauce, salad, breadsticks

FRIDAY (17):
B: Old-fashioned oatmeal & eggs (or bread pudding)
L: Ham salad w/crackers, deviled eggs
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

B: Leftover oatmeal cake, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Enchiladas, tamale pie, salad, chips, salsa

Menu Plan: April, Week 4
SUNDAY (19):
B: Crunchy Oat bars, popcorn
L: Deviled eggs, baked beans, brownies
D: Leftovers or Sandwiches

MONDAY (20):
B: Scones, milk, eggs
L: Rigatoni/noodles w/sauce Or chicken patties
D: Ham Steak, mac & cheese, veggie

B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips
D: Spaghetti & Meatballs, breadsticks, salad

B: Muffins, milk, eggs??
L: Leftover Spaghetti & Meatball or Meatball sandwiches
D: Stuffed ham & cheese triangles, baked home fries, veggie

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: Leftover ham & cheese triangles, chips or homefries
D: Chicken patty sandwiches, salad, veggie

FRIDAY (24):
B: Old fashioned Oatmeal & bread pudding
L: Deli Meat sandwiches, or chicken salad on homemade crackers
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

SATURDAY (25) (planned to be away for weekend):
B: French Breakfast puffs, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Sausage & noodles w/sauce, veggie

Menu Plan: April, Week 5
SUNDAY (26) (planned to be away for weekend):
B: Crunchy Oat bars, popcorn (church meal)
L: Sandwiches at church
D: Leftovers or Sandwiches

MONDAY (27):
B: Scones, milk, eggs
L: Sausage & noodles w/sauce, salad, breadsticks
D: Baked Chicken, sliced garlic potatoes, veggie, homemade rolls

B: Crunchy Oat bars w/milk
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches, chips
D: Tacos & Burritos, chips, salsa, salad

B: Muffins, milk, eggs??
L: Deli Meat Sandwiches w/chips
D: BBQ chicken on homemade rolls, baked home fries, cole slaw

B: Rice w/cinnamon sugar & milk, eggs
L: Peanut Butter & Jelly w/mac & cheese
D: Breakfast w/sausage scrapple

FRIDAY (May 1):
B: Leftovers from Thursday’s nights breakfast
L: Deli Meat sandwiches, or egg salad on homemade crackers
D: Pizza or Stromboli, salad

B: French Breakfast puffs or coffee cake, eggs
L: Leftover pizza/Stromboli
D: Enchiladas, refried beans w/chips, salad, salsa

SUNDAY (May 3):
B: Crunchy Oat bars, popcorn
L: baked bean, deviled eggs, brownies (church meal)
D: Leftovers or Sandwiches

There it is! I basically print out a large 2 page calendar and fill it out with the planned meals. My husband requested that I print up a copy to post on the refrigerator, so now I also type it up to post so that everyone knows what is planned. This has saved me so much time and headaches that I actually look forward to planning our meals now! Amazing!


Schedules & Routines & such...

I have been quite busy lately making schedules and routines for my day. Over the course of a week and a half I have not only made my new "Spring, Hectic day Schedule" but I have also made up morning, afternoon and evening routines AND a zone-cleaning list personalized for my home. While I am not going to post my zone cleaning list (since it only applies to my home), I am going to post my new revamped Schedule for Hectic Days (which is EVERY day of spring due to gardening and my sewing projects) and I will also post my routines.

Modified School Schedule for Hectic Days*
(this would be considered my master schedule for spring as it is quite a busy time)

<>Children get up/dressed/beds made (7:15 – 7:45)
<>Morning Chores for children (7:45 – 8:00)
<>Bible/Music/Breakfast (8:00 – 8:45)
<>Breakfast Clean-Up (8:45 – 9:00)
<>Math (9:00 – 9:30)
<>Group Lesson (9:45 – 10:00) Science, History, Art, Music
<>15 minute transition time (10:00 – 10:15)*
<>Spelling, Writing, Or Handwriting (10:15 -10:45)
<>15 minute transition time (10:45 – 11:00)*
<>English Grammar Worksheet (11:00 – 11:30)
---Capitalization, Noun/Verbs, End Marks
<>Reading/Phonics (11:30 – 11:45)
<>P.E. (11:45 – lunchtime)
<>15 minute transition time (12:00 – 12:15)*
<>Lunchtime (12:15 – 12:45)
<>Scripture Reading w/Dad (12:45 – 1:00)
<>Lunch Clean-Up (1:00 - 1:15)
<>15 minute transition time (1:15 – 1:30)*
<>Inside/Outside Work Time (1:30 - 4:00)
<>Dinner Prep (4:00 – 5:00)
<>15 minute transition time (5:15 – 5:30)*
<>Wash up for Dinner (5:30 – 5:45)
<>Set up/Sit down for Dinner (5:45 – 6:30)
<>Dinner Clean-Up Time (6:30 – 6:45)
<>Outside Work/Play Time (6:45 – 7:45)
<>Come in and clean up for bed (7:45 – 8:15)
<>15 minute transition time (8:15 – 8:30)*
<>Lights Out/Bedtime for children (8:30 p.m. – 7:15 a.m.)
<>Quick tidy for Mom (8:30 – 8:45)
<>Get baby down for night (8:45 – 9:30)
<>Computer time, bath time for mom, etc. (9:30)

*If you notice, I have transition times built in to my day so that if we do NOT get started as early as we planned, we can make it up by using the transition times. Transition times can also be used for quick clean-up jobs in between subjects.

Intentional Daily Routine**

Morning Routine
Get up, go to bathroom, scrub toilet & sink
Put on deodorant, get dressed to lace-up shoes.
Grab dirty clothes (to take to basement).
Brush hair.
Get coffee for husband.
Make breakfast, start bread & coffee.
Read scripture & prayer.
Look over school stuff & get things out for homeschooling, check emails.
---Daily lessons: Music, Proverbs, Math, Phonics/Reading, Handwriting, English, Spelling, Group lesson, P.E.
Look at menu plan, lay out meat.
Start laundry.
Get children up, change baby.
Set table for breakfast.
2nd oldest son unloads dishwasher while others are clearing table & sweeping floor.
Load breakfast dishes in dishwasher.
Begin homeschooling.
Put laundry in dryer.
Start new load of laundry.
Feed baby lunch.

Afternoon Routine
Put homeschooling stuff away. Avoid the computer.
Set table for lunch.
Prepare food for children.
Change baby’s diaper.
Get baby down for nap.
Eat lunch.
Scripture reading with Dad.
Get laundry from basement.
Start new load of laundry/put laundry in dryer.
Clear table & floor with children.
Put dirty dishes in dishwasher and run dishwasher, if necessary.
Finish up school lessons.
5 minute room clean-up or quick cleaning of cluttered spot.
Clear another cluttered spot (set timer for 5 minutes).
Fold and put away laundry.
Get laundry from basement.
Start a load of laundry.
Start supper.
Declutter time, set timer for 15 minutes.
Finish preparations for supper, clean up as you go.
Spend time on zone cleaning.
Get baby from nap.
Change baby’s diaper.

Evening Routine
Set table for supper.
---Food, plates, forks, spoons, knives, napkins, cups, water pitcher, condiments, bread already sliced.
Feed baby & eat supper.
2nd oldest son unloads dishwasher.
Clean up table & floor from supper.
Put dishes in dishwasher.
Put away any items left out from supper prep.
Wipe counter tops, stove, microwave.
5 minute room clean-up w/children.
Declutter for 15 minutes.
Put last loads of laundry in dryer.
Outside/garden time.
Baths for children.
Pick up bathroom laundry and take to basement.
Children ready for bed (remind children to use toilet and brush teeth).
Children to bed.
Get baby to sleep.
Computer time.
---Prepare for next day’s homeschooling, scan & print necessary worksheets for school, look over next day’s events, menu, check/delete emails, sharpen pencils, get out school things and set them in a special spot.
Zone cleaning in bedroom, sewing if able.
Brush hair.
Bath or bed.

**Also note that I have called this an "Intentional Routine," I do what I can to get things done, I intend to follow the routine, but every routine takes time and there are always interruptions.

I also have been planning a monthly menu, if you are interested in seeing this "Menu Plan" just leave me a comment and I will post it. I have almost typed up the entire menu plan for the month of April, so all I have to do is copy and paste!


Monday, March 30, 2009

Just thought you'd like to know about these freebies!!!

I get weekly emails for these freebies, this week is especially interesting to me so I thought I would share the link once again:

Here is (most of) the email:

If you've ever been stressed out over your homeschooling and never seem to be able to get everything done that needs doing in a day, you're gonna love this week's resources.

This week on HomeschoolFreebieOfTheDay, we're giving you 5 ebooks from our great "Homeschoolers Time Management Toolkit", in which you'll get all the "real life"
advice and encouragement you need to finally get control of your time and make it work for you.

Here's the rundown:

Monday, March 30: Finding Time To Do It All:
Homeschool Moms Share their Time Management
Woes and Solutions

Tuesday, March 31: Calming The Chaotic Life:
How to Get Your Time Under Control

Wednesday, April 1: 97 Motivators to Help You Get Things Done

Thursday, April 2: 77 Time Saving Tips for Busy Parents and Families

Friday, April 3: Great Time Management Tips & Ideas FOR YOUR KIDS!

Each of these resources will be available on their respective days at: http://www.homeschoolfreebie.wholesomechildhood.com/

Please take a moment to pass along word of this week's "time management"resources with your homeschooling friends and support groups... they'll thank you for it!


Also this week:

If you enjoy gardens & growing things, don't miss this.
For just seven more days, we have our hugely popular GREEN THUMB FAMILY TOOLKIT available at 75% OFF the normal price - it is just $5.95 (instead of the normal $24) until next Monday.

This toolkit is perfect for
anyone thinking about a garden this spring...
AND/OR incorporating the kids and
homeschooling into the great outdoors. This package is chock full of wonderful resources for you to keep the learning and growing going... all Spring & Summer long.


If you haven't already taken a look at this, do so now.
It is WELL worth your consideration.

Again, it is only available at this price for the next
7 days.

I hope you enjoy these freebies, remember if you subscribe to their newsletter, you will get an exclusive "subscribers only" freebie as well, but I'm not allowed to share that link.

Have a great week in the Lord (that is, if I'm gone again for a while, busy times, busy times).

Saturday, February 28, 2009


Well, things have been busy as usual. Life is very full with everything there is to do, as many of you know and have experienced.

First off, my dear 8-year-old daughter, who is an animal lover, injured herself a couple weeks back. She was playing with her brothers upstairs in her bedroom and jumped from one of the top bunk beds like a FROG!!! Yes, no kidding, a frog. One of my boys came to get me and told me that she had hurt herself badly and was crying. So, I waddled upstairs (my hubby likes to raz me about the way I walk when I am pregnant)... and checked to see if the emergency was really worth a trip to the hospital. She was crying, a cry that I rarely hear her cry, and complaining that her heel hurt and she could not wiggle her toes or put any weight on her foot. I could not carry her downstairs... so, I went to the freezer, got out an icepack (one of those that is squishly and flat) and wrapped that around her heel stablizing her ankle & foot so that she could at least scoot across the floor. Then, she was able to get downstairs where I could better tend to her.

I, then, called my husband with the wonderful news. I waited until he got home (also making sure that my diagnosis was correct) to take her to the ER. Thankfully she wasn't in a lot of pain and was able to stand waiting a little while. He got home and shortly after we went to the ER.

Unfortunately there was no parking places in the ER parking lot (ugh) and I had to back our 15 passenger van out of the parking lot (because I couldn't turn it around). I, then, dropped her off to the ladies at the ER desk, and had to go find the parking garage for the hospital (which also included a bit of a walk to get back to where I needed to be).

After the x-ray, we were informed that she did indeed break her heel bone, close to the growth plate, and she needed a splint (half cast) until we could get an appointment for the orthopedic doctor. So, after our visit to the ER, we went to see the orthopedic doctor who put a full cast (to the knee) on her leg & foot.

Now the problem is how to keep an active 8-year-old busy with indoor activities that involve sitting. So far, she has learned how to crochet, she has been making bead necklaces, and she has been doing her latch-hook kit (of a golden lab puppy). Of course, there is also school (which has been extremely challenging these last couple weeks) and she also has been doing a lot of drawing. I am not sure how she is going to stand the next 3 weeks with a cast, but only time will tell.


Now for other things going on...

My boys are helping me to garden this year as I am not up to digging and using my garden claw, etc. Interestingly enough, one day I had asked my oldest son to dig a hole for me in the garden to hold all of our coffee grounds, egg shells and plant matter (for compost)... He was thrilled that I asked him to do this. SO... I made the comment, "You know, you can dig up my whole garden if you would like!" and this thrilled him even MORE!!! So, these last several weeks he and his brother have been digging up my garden plot for this year's garden, YEAH!!!

So yesterday, I gave him instructions to get some leaves and put on the garden as well... Leaves are not a problem with us anymore... as you can see in the picture below, we have an abundance of leaf matter where we live now as this whole plot of land is COVERED with trees. I will continue to have them get leaves until I have enough leaves to cover all of my garden plots. They also get the privilege of digging all of those plots up this year as our tiller is in need of repair. And the best thing is, THEY LOVE DOING THIS JOB!!!

Also, in regards to gardening, I have been learning about what plants to plant together as some plants actually benefit from others! This is called companion gardening (or plant pals) and there are several articles on the internet that talk about this. A few things that I learned is that tomatoes like to be planted with basil and carrots, strawberries do NOT like to be planted with cabbage, beans like to be planted with celery and cucumbers, and garlic keeps the aphids away from roses... It also recommends planting herbs around your garden to keep away common garden pests. But, my advice to anyone who is gardening this year for the first time is to DO YOUR RESEARCH!!! That is the only way you are going to have any success at all.

I am hoping to have a MUCH better garden this year, than last... though I did enjoy our tomatoes and squash, I would really like to have many more veggies than last year. However, one thing I have learned with all gardening is that you start small and work up to the garden of your dreams.... I don't know if I am starting small enough this year or not, but I have the will and determination to have a better garden than last year. My biggest thing this year is to keep up with those weeds, use the leaves, and lay newpaper down around my plants before the weeds take over.

So far, our expected crops are going to be strawberries (planted last year), blueberries (will plant this year in March), blackberries (growing wild), wineberries (like raspberries, growing wild), peaches (from the peach tree at the edge of the woods), herbs (from my herb garden planted last year) and hopefully many more fruits & veggies... like tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, green beans, peas, carrots, radishes, lettuce, spinach, cabbage, pumpkins, canteloupe, watermelon, onions, beets, several varieties of squash, potatoes, and the list goes on.

I have already ordered the seeds and they should be arriving any day now. I plan to start my tomatoes and peppers immediately upon receipt and any other veggie that can be started indoors. The secret to that is to have the soil stay at around 65 - 70 degrees, I learned that lesson last year when my seedlings didn't do so well. I also plan on starting several flowers indoors as well... now is the time!!! I probably could have started a bit earlier, but our home doesn't stay as warm because we use wood heat only which means that the only room that really stays warm is the kitchen. This is fine for us as we have learned to layer clothing, but seeds DO NOT like it AT ALL!!!

Okay, that's my spill on gardening...


As far as everything else, this week our dishwasher died. That sure was disappointing as I had loaded it, as always, and went to start it and nothing happened.

So this week I have washed dishes 3 to 4 times a day by hand... I do this because I know how many dishes we go through with each meal. If I wait till the end of the day to wash them, I will be there for 1 1/2 hours. So, I basically take 15-20 minutes after each meal to wash up the items we used for that meal and "WOW!" everything is done in about 30-35 minutes (that includes putting food away, clearing the table and washing the dishes). If I included the floor sweeping, too, we are now talking about 10-15 minutes longer as my boys are not as efficient at sweeping as I am yet.

So, the good news is that our dishes pretty much stay clean all the time and the kitchen looks nice most of the day... the bad news is that my arms and hands are covered in a rash that itches and burns due to my sensitivity to Ajax handwashing dish soap. Sorry, haven't gone to homemade soaps yet as that requires a trip to the store and time that I just don't have these days. Maybe someone can offer me a quick solution to making my own soap FAST.... and with what I have on hand, I don't know. I just do what I know and have known for years... you can teach this old dog new tricks, but it has to be dropped in my lap so that I can stop long enough to notice it!

Well, that's my update for now! I think that lunchtime is calling, as are my washers begging to be emptied so they can be filled again... haven't had much time lately to do laundry, wonder why that is??? ;OP


Monday, February 16, 2009

FREE Ebooks and Audios!!!!

Well, I have known about this site for a while now... just having the time to blog about it sometimes seems overwhelming with everything else I need to do, but they are asking for some advertising on our blogs so that we can get the word out...

Here is what they are offering this week:

Monday, Feb 16th:
Great President's Day Resource Links! (links)
Want to make the most of President's Day? Check out these Lesson Plans, virtual tours, poetry & the actual papers of presidents Washington & Lincoln!

Tuesday, Feb 17th:
A Chinese Wonder Book (PDF ebook)
This fascinating collection of Chinese stories and legends, edited by Maggie Hogan of Bright Ideas Press, is a great literature-based introduction to the rich history and culture of China. Includes a read-aloud guide.

Wednesday, Feb 18th:
"Harriet Tubman & the Railway to Freedom" (MP3 audio)
A classic old time radio dramatization of the story of
Harriet Tubman and the activities of
the "underground railroad" during slave years.

Thursday, Feb 19th:
Blessed Is The Man: High School Unit Study Sampler (PDF ebook)
"Blessed is the Man" is a wonderful High School Unit Study
geared to Christian young men, and based on Psalm 1.
Today's resource is this extensive 74 page preview
of the complete four year curriculum - normally $10 on the
publisher's website - but yours to download today!
If you have growing boys in your household, DON'T MISS THIS!

Friday, Feb 20th:
Creatively Simple: How to Make Butter in the Blender (PDF ebook)
Learning to make butter is something everyone should do at least once.
This simple ebook by Penny Raine can teach you how, using items you
probably already have in your kitchen. Detailed instructions and lots of
You can get all of these on their respective days at

And if you are a subscriber you may get an extra bonus ebook or audio!!!

Hope you enjoy!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Yeah!!! They Passed!!!!

I am celebrating today (in my heart) because the portfolios that I turned in to the school district last Monday for my 5 school-age children PASSED!!!!

I had never done a portfolio before, so I was a bit anxious about the whole idea of having someone "approve" of the school work that my children are doing... Sometimes I just don't feel "qualified" as a teacher. I wasn't a education major in college nor was I one to read on my own, so I finally feel somewhat accomplished at homeschooling. But this Art Major did something right and I am so thankful to my Lord and King, Jesus Christ.

But from this experience, I did learn a few "tricks of the trade." One being that I have to file all school papers away so that I don't have to go searching anymore for the "right one," I mean I dug through everything that we had trying to find what I felt was most appropriate for the portfolio. My 6-year-old daughter was so enamored with the idea of having a "folder" of her own that all the papers from the first part of the year she got into, emptied, and put new papers in... ugh. Thankfully I was able to gather those important papers together and file them away for the "real" portfolio, but if I hadn't been on my toes I would have struggled to find everything.

I can't remember if I explained the system in my last post or not, but now I have a much better system. Instead of filing things away in a 3-ring-binder, I have this paper bin from Sam's Club that I file all the children's papers in. Now I don't lose that "all-important" test that I want to use for the portfolio because it falls out of the binder before the school semester is up... the holes in the paper don't get worn out either.

I think this unit has 12 slots for paper, so I have 6 slots that I am using for each child... even my 3-year-old because she really likes to do school, too! I am hoping to have her writing her letters by next year (or maybe even this year), but I won't rush things as I want her to remain open to the whole schooling thing.

My other daughters ( 5 & 6-year-old) are really starting to "catch on" to letter recognition and phonics, as well. It is so wonderful to see them writing on their own, writing their names, numbers and letters... and for phonics, writing the symbols (letters) for the phonetic sounds.

Unfortunately, trying to stay completely on the schedule that I have created isn't as easy for me as it may be for others... you see, I am a finisher not a "stay on tasker".... I want to be able to let the schedule guide me, but I think, "What if I don't get it done tomorrow? I must do it today!" or "The lesson has to be finished!!!" You see, I have had the unfortunate experience of not being able to finish the book in a year... last year for example... We moved, and so we are just now finishing our math books from last year, ugh!

But I believe that my children need to learn to finish things that they start, else they may never get it done!

Well, again... time is short these days for blogging, for me, it just isn't the right "season" for blogging to long!

Blessings All!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Have I told you how busy life is?

I'm sure that I have! This school year has been extremely challenging and busy!!!

As far as the pregnancy... things are going well!

I did get to see the baby at 14 weeks by ultrasound due to an unfortunate trip to the ER for bleeding in December, but everything looked good and the doctor really had no clue as to what happened. But our holiday season was extremely busy and I DID overdo it. I made dress-up princess outfits for my 5 little princesses (a "gift" from my MIL...she bought the fabric and I sewed up the outfits).

Just yesterday I delivered our homeschool portfolios to the Public School Superintendent... Boy! I never knew that making a portfolio of school work was so time consuming!!! But I did it and now I just have to wait to see if it is acceptable. I'll tell you what I did learn... ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS file things away so that the children cannot get into their schoolwork. I have a daughter who just loved going into her school folder and snatching things.

But I did come up with a system. I have one of those $20 paper organizers from Sam's Club that I stash the children's school work in now. For now, my daughter hasn't figured out that I have done this, but when she does I will have to put this filing system up higher than she can reach.

She was enamored with the fact that I was making a portfolio of her work and I had to be really firm with her that she was NOT going to get into it. She didn't, thankfully.

I am so thankful for all of your sweet comments lately! They just keep coming in from time to time and they make me smile! For those who are new readers... sorry I haven't dropped by yet, I just don't have the time, but eventually (hopefully) I will get the time.

We just cancelled our Satellite service, partly due to the addiction that our children have to the TV and partly due to the financial burden it places upon our family. I'm fine with it, it just means that I will be making more time for Bible reading, sewing, meal planning, and all those other things that I have intended to get to.

My brain is hurting from thoughts of gardening!!! I want to start tilling the ground NOW!!!! I am so itching to get outside and pull weeds and plan my garden for this year. Last year was sort of a flop, but that was due to my hesistancy to plant not knowing what the deer were going to eat. Now I know where to plant things and I CAN'T WAIT TO GET OUT THERE!!!! But much of the work will have to be done by my boys and hubby as I am not allowed to do the heavy work due to my last pregnancy with the early delivery.

Anywho, my time is up!