Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Two Tickets to the Christmas Ball by Donita Paul

Yet another book review. :)  I received the book Two Tickets to the Christmas Ball by Donita K. Paul to review for Waterbrook Multnomah Publishers.  I was actually looking forward to reading the book because I thought the premise was kind of cute: "Mischievous matchmakers. Two special tickets. One unlikely couple."  I'm a sucker for a good, clean romance novel and thought this would fit the bill.  It even had a cute cover (yes, I judge books by their cover!).  Yes, it was a romance, but it also involved wizards and "oddities" that I just wasn't fond of.

If you like magic or things of that sort, then you may enjoy the book, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend it to anyone.  Even removing the wizards, the story itself dragged a little for me.  I did finish the book but if it weren't for the review, I would probably have put it down and not picked it back up again.  SO, you probably want to rush right out and buy this one then, don't you? ;)

Wish I had a better review of the book, but I do not.  The story line was too unbelievable for me, and I'm really not into the whole fantasy genre.

This book was provided to me by the Waterbrook Multnomah Blogging for Books program but all opinions are my own.  (really, do you think THEY would want me to say this!?!?)

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half by Steve and Annette Economides

Through the Booksneeze program of Thomas Nelson, I received the book Cut Your Grocery Bill in Half by Steve and Annette Economides.  If you know me, you know that over the past year and a half or so I have become quite the coupon/deal junkie, so I was excited to read this and see how much further I could take my grocery shopping adventures (I still have a LONG way to go...).

The book is an easy read and does go fairly quickly.  They discuss how they as a family do monthly grocery shopping (including monthly meal planning) and use coupons.  Their ides are quite simple and are really nothing other than I've already seen.  I have to say if you are interested in cutting your grocery bills while still eating a healthy diet, I don't think you need to buy a book to tell you how to do it.  There are NUMEROUS resources available through the web, one of my favorite being Money Saving Mom.  The book itself isn't bad per se I just know there are other resources and it would not be worth it (for me) to actually purchase the book.  However, if you are looking for a resource to keep at your fingertips and get you started down the path of lowering your grocery bill?  This book would be a good resource.

I did decide to try their idea of monthly meal planning.  Once again, this was not a new idea for me (my mom has been telling me about this for quite some time...) but I finally decided to give it a try.  I've been good about planning one or two weeks at a time, but maybe with a monthly plan I will get better about having ALL ingredients on hand. :)

This book was provided to me through the Booksneeze program in exchange for my review.  All opinions are my own.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Shutterfly Christmas!

I am a Shutterfly girl...I adore their photobooks (so cute and colorful and EASY) and their good quality photo prints, but even more than that??  REALLY like the personalized photo cards!!  A friend of mine introduced me to them last year and I have to say...easy-peasy.

My favorite designs are the ones where you can include more than one photo because, really?  If your family is anything like mine, getting all five of us in a photo at the same time all looking at the camera and smiling pretty (without food stained shirts or mouths or crazy hair) is VERY rare.  I think the last family photo I have is from little Caleb's first day of pre-K...last year.  So anyway, here are a few of my faves:

With Love Blue is super very cute and I almost wish I had some black and white photos to do this myself (hmmmm...photo shoot anyone?!?)

Joy Love Story is a 5X7 photo card...nice and simple!

And last, but certainly not least...Top Ten Moments is a GREAT idea to personalize the card!  Who needs a Christmas letter!

If you are not already a Shutterfly user, you are eligible for 50 free prints when you first sign up!  They also have great promotions throughout the year!  Also, if you're a blogger, you might want to check this out...you could get some free holiday cards yourself!!

So, if you're on my Christmas card list, you just *might* see on of those adorable cards coming to a mailbox near you. :)

Thursday, October 28, 2010


This is just a test... Wanted to see how easy it is to post from something other than my computer.

I DO actually plan to post something of substance in the very near future, and if anything, Halloween is this weekend so of COURSE there will be pictures of the kids. Then again at the rate I post pics, you *might* see them by Christmas.

Praying for everyone this morning to have a wonderful day and if you are in the Midwest? Try not to blow away. :)

Monday, October 4, 2010

Baby It's Cold Outside...

Brrrrrr.  It's only October 4th, but I'm COLD.  And if you know me at all, you know I RARELY am cold.  I prefer cooler temps (not frigid) and being curled up under a soft blanket year-round (yet one more reason the A/C is set to 68 or 69 generally and the heat is about the same.) :)  But for some reason, today I am COLD!!

Little Caleb has been in school for almost 9 full weeks now (I only know that because the little calendar from his school says the end of the 1st 9-weeks is this Friday.  Yes, I are smart.) and we have YET to wait for the bus in the rain.  That's right, I said almost NINE weeks and no rain.  (Ok, it finally rained on Saturday, but not a ton...)  Not that I'm complaining about standing waiting for the bus in the sun, but still...until today we hadn't experienced any poor weather.  But today??  It's COLD!!  We could see our breath as we stood waiting (which of course helped entertain the kids waiting for the bus...)  Sadly it was probably only 45 or something this morning, but it just made me realize that in a month or so, we'll have to be bundled up just to wait for the bus.  Not looking forward to that...

This week is spirit week at Little Caleb's school and today is Rock Star day.  Being the conservative little family that we are, we don't have a lot of rock star gear.  AND since picture day was less than 2 weeks ago, he just had a hair cut and his hair is too short to spike (sorry Uncle Chris...).  SO, all we had was this shirt that he got to wear (thanks for Amber for the inspiration!!):
This totally cracks me up.  So my little rock star is wearing this in addition to his shades, jeans with a hole in the knee and his sister's microphone.  Her *pink* microphone.  Ah well, here's hoping we can be a little more creative as he gets older....

And to answer your question...yes it's cold, but no, the heat is not on yet.  The heat will not be turned on until AT LEAST November, hopefully later. :)  Happy Random Monday!!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Happy Birthday Baby Girl!!

Today is my darling daughter's 4th birthday...where has the time gone?!?!?  Four years ago, she was this:
ALL cheeks, I kid you not.  Abby was my easiest delivery.  I remember sitting and waiting for the time to push (I was well epidural-ized and felt goooooood!) and when the time came, it only took about 25 minutes or so (which was REALLY nice after the 2 hours it took with Caleb!).  The entire time I was pushing, we were watching Wheel of Fortune and trying to solve the puzzles between contractions.  :)  Like I said, easiest delivery of all.  Then she came out...all 10 lbs 2 oz of sweet, chubby, red-haired goodness.

Abby, I love you more than you will know (I would say "ever know" but I'm confident that when you have a daughter, you will understand!) and am so thankful that God entrusted your daddy and me with your care.  You make us laugh daily!  I love how you enjoy being a girl and playing with dolls and dressing up but also want to play with your brothers' cars and trains.  Stick with your tutus and cars and don't let anyone tell you differently.

You have already grown into a beautiful little girl and I am excited to see the amazing things God has for you as you continue to grow.  My prayer for you is to constantly seek after God and strive to become the woman He has made you to be.  But for now?  Just stay my baby girl awhile longer please.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Permission to Speak Freely by Anne Jackson

Permission to Speak Freely by Anne Jackson is a compilation of both essays and art in a book full of honest views of the church and one woman's struggle with addictions and confession.  Anne is a blogger who asked the question "What is one thing you feel you can't say in the church?" and the response was MUCH larger than she expected.  She began to see there are SO many people within our church walls that are hurting and struggling with different sins, yet VERY few of them are willing to say anything about it.

Anne's book outlines her own personal struggles with addictions like pornography and pain killers as well as her struggle with trusting people within the church.  Sadly, Anne grew up in the church (as a pastor's kid no less) and had first hand knowledge of how judgemental fellow Christians can be.

The book started out well but it did tend to start wandering about half-way through.  Also, this is not a "self-help" book or even a "how-to" book, but it is truly all about her struggles and shows how freeing it was for her to be able to confess these things to others...to truly work through them all.  It is a very easy read and I would recommend it if only to begin thinking more about what true confession is (not just acknowledging but truly confessing and making a change).

This book was provided to me for review by Thomas Nelson Publishing as part of the Booksneeze program.  All opinions are my own. 

The Boy Who Changed The World by Andy Andrews

The Boy Who Changed The World by Andy Andrews is a children's book that illustrates the butterfly effect...where every action, good or bad, can influence other actions.  It was a very cute book with very cute and appropriate illustrations for children.  Each story weaves in the comment that God created us to make a difference.  It goes through the chain of events from a farmer adopting George Washington Carver all the way up to Norman Borlaug, and how decisions each one made (large or small) had an influence on others. 

I would recommend the book for children ages 3 - 8 as the story is written directly for children and is easily understood.  All in all a good read!

This book was provided to me by Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of the Booksneeze program.  All opinions are my own.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Cast of Characters by Max Lucado

Cast of Characters: Common People in the Hands of an Uncommon God by Max Lucado...very good read!!  The book is actually segments from a lot of different books he's written through the years (and if you know anything about Max Lucado, you know he's written A LOT of books!) and details the lives of "common people" from the Bible.  Not only were they common people, but they accomplished amazing things with God's help.  This quote from the conclusion sums it up well: "If you ever wonder how in the world God could use you to change the world, look at these people.  This ragbag of ne'er-do-wells and has beens, failed followers and despairing church leaders who found hope, not in their performance, but in God's proverbially open arms." (pg 219)

My favorite chapter was about Mary, Martha and Lazarus.  If you don't know their story, find your Bible and read John 12.  But what I loved most about this chapter is the way Max described each...we all have a place at the table. The book as a whole is a good read and the shorter chapters make for quick reading as well.

This book was provided to me as part of the Thomas Nelson Booksneeze program.  All opinions are my own.

Monday, August 9, 2010

He's Not Finished With Me Yet...

Have you ever started a project and got about half-way through it before realizing it wasn't taking the shape you thought it should?  Maybe it was off-center, maybe it was larger (or smaller) than you thought it was supposed to be.  Maybe you used the wrong materials and didn't realize until it was too late.  I've done this quite a few times throughout my (getting longer every year) crafty life. 

As I was working on a project last night and having one of those times listed above, something hit me:

God's not finished with me yet!

While I may see a project in my hands that is not going the way I planned or desired it to go, God could say the same thing about me!!  The difference??  I would probably (and have at times) just decide to scrap the idea/project and start over (or NOT start over and just give up) yet God doesn't!!  God knows the end project...He knows how all the pieces fit together...He may see a partially complete project (and may not be pleased with its current state!) but He knows how it ends!  He's not finished with me yet!

There is a wonderful freeing feeling in those words, but you have to trust that they're true!  A song by Brandon Heath called "Wait and See" uses the phrase "he's not finished with me yet," and my favorite part of the song is this:

Still wondering why I'm here
Still wrestling with my fear,
But OH! He's up to something.
And the farther on I go, I've seen enough to know
that I'm not here for nothing, He's up to something...
He's not finished with me yet.

My prayer today is that I would continue to believe those words.  That I would KNOW He's still working in my life!!  And whether or not I know how things will all come together in this project of my life, God's word tells me in Romans 8:28 "And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose."  Thank you Lord that you are NOT finished with me yet!!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Crazy, Busy Weekends!

Life is anything but boring when there are three kids and friends and family that live far away (and by far away I mean anything over a couple hours...).  This past few months we've been having a whirlwind of activity on the weekends and this old lady is feelin' it! :)  Sad, no?

But first, one of the things the kids like to do with Daddy is make french toast for breakfast.  They crack the eggs, mix it and even dunk the bread and place it in the skillet.  Makes for a bit more cleanup but at least they're having fun!!  (and yes, I do believe little Caleb is jammin' out to something here...he marches to his own drummer, just like his momma!)
In May Caleb and Abby were SOOOOO excited to welcome their new baby cousin Faith to the family!  This was trip #1 (and #2 a week later...) to visit some family.  We were able to go up to Uncle Chris and Auntie Em's and hang out with baby Faith for some time.  Isn't she cute??  I think she takes after her aunt... 
Then, for the 4th of July weekend, we decided to go visit my Grammy and Pappy along with Kerry, Rich and Marissa.  I know, who in their right mind would decide to go to GEORGIA in July!!  But God was definitely smiling on this trip because the weather was GORGEOUS!!  It was crazy lovely and we had SUCH a good time!  So fun, in fact, that we didn't take hardly any pictures.  It was just as we were finishing packing that I remembered we needed a pic of Grammy and Pappy with the kids!!
Then the weekend after that we had cousins from the other side of the family in to visit and the kids all had a BLAST playing together!  The toy room was sufficiently trashed but they also enjoyed cleaning it all up the day after. :)  The kids had so much fun, the camera forgot to make an appearance (I know, do you see a pattern??  Oh, and I didn't mention Papa Rick came to visit the weekend before the 4th and, yup--you guessed it...no pics!)

This past weekend we took ANOTHER road trip up to Tomah, WI to visit my best friend and her family.  Shannon and I have been friends since I was in 7th grade and it stinks living almost 8 hours drive away from her. :(  Again, we had SUCH a good time!!!  At least this time I remembered to get the camera out at least a few times....here's Weston, Tyler and Aiden.  Tyler and Aiden were born just under one month apart and it was SO fun to watch them toddle around together!
Princess Abby and Princess Lydia (and Aiden looking on...wanted to be in the picture!) Abby and Lydia are about 7 months apart in age and they played ALL weekend together!
Knight Caleb and Darth Vader Weston doing a nice sword fighting scene for us.  Weston is almost a year and a half older than Caleb, but they get along GREAT as well!!
An attempt to get a pic of ALL the kids together and as you can see, Aiden wanted NO part in it!
So instead, here are the other five.  Aiden just HAD to be in the other picture so we'll leave him out of this one. :)  See??  Everyone looks HAPPY!!
And of course, me and my BFF Shannon.  I am SOOOOO thankful that God has seen fit to keep her a part of my life for all these years!  We may not see each other as often as we did in high school or college (we saw each other EVERY.DAY! in college) but I know that she is there for me and even in all my moving around since high school, Shannon has been the constant. :)  So thankful we were able to spend some time with them over the weekend!!
The summer is winding down for us but we still have more fun friend and family time coming!  I think by the time school starts in a few weeks I'll be ready to stay home for a few days. :)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

With this ring, I thee wed

July 13, 2002...The day I married my man.  I am SOOOOO very thankful that God chose me to be his helpmate.  I pray that as we continue in our lives together that we would always be looking to God as the head of our house...that we would continue to work together to be the parents our children need.  I pray that I would always be the wife my husband deserves and most importantly that I would continue to grow more in love with him every day.  It hasn't been a smooth 8 years but it hasn't been completely rocky either.  Praise God for that! 

Thank you Caleb for being more than the husband I deserve...I love you dearly and am SOOOOOOOO proud of you!  Thank you for bringing me along on this adventure...may we always allow God to direct our sail.  Love you!!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Storm Warning by Billy Graham

I had the opportunity to read the revised Storm Warning by Billy Graham for a book review.  He first wrote the book in 1992, but with all the changes going on around the world, he revised and updated the book to show again how today's happenings could fit within the end times.  The book centers on the prophesies for the end times and where we are currently.  Although we do not know the day or time, Billy Graham through the book emphasizes what the Bible says about watching and praying for the return of Christ.  My favorite part actually is at the very end when Billy says "...But I must also keep working until He comes."  So very true!  In the book he goes through an indepth review of the four horsemen as well as signs of the times.  This book is a good read if the end times is something you are interested in!

This book was provided to me through the Booksneeze program.  I was given the book for free in exchange for my review.  All opinions are mine and mine alone. :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Change Is a'Comin'

Change....it's on the wind (and there's LOTS of wind 'round these parts lately...PHEW!!).  If you see Mary Poppins flyin' by, well, don't say I didn't warn you.  Then again, it could always be the Wicked Witch as well...who knows!  :)

All I do know is that change is coming and the constant in it all??  God.  God's love for us, His desire for us to desire HIM more.  God's there even in the minute details...how can we NOT be excited about that?!?!?  So as we enter into a season of change, we move forward BOLDLY proclaiming Christ's sufficiency in our lives.  May we always be this bold.

Oh, and in case you forgot how cute my kids were, here you go! :)

Monday, May 3, 2010

Plan B by Pete Wilson

This is a review of the book Plan B by Pete Wilson.  The tagline "What do you do when God doesn't show up the way you thought he would" really drew me to this book.  The basic premise of the book is just that...what happens when God doesn't come through like we (mere-humans!) think he should.  Pete uses characters from the Bible as well as current day personal experiences to illustrate these points.  Joseph, Jonah, David...they all experienced a "Plan B" but God was with them through it all.

Anyone that is currently experiencing, has experienced or thinks they will experience a "Plan B" situation should read this book.  He does not provide all the answers for how to get through adversity, but every person's "Plan B" is different, and only God is the one that has those answers.

A question he asked is "What would you do if you were absolutely confident God was with you?"  What a powerful question to consider when coming upon our own "Plan B" situations!  His response, "When you respond in your current circumstances as if you were confident that God is there, you will see God in the circumstances."  I really like that, and I think it is a good question/response to keep in mind when adversity does strike.  All in all, a good book, and I would recommend it to anyone!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their BookSneeze.com <http://BookSneeze.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

He Is RISEN!!!  May you all experience the wondrous power of the cross all year and not just on Easter Sunday.  Matthew 28:20b "And behold I am with you always, to the end of the age."

Happy Easter from the Worgess Family!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Five Question Friday 2/5/10

My Little Life
So, I decided to do the Five Question Friday again...just pay no mind to it actually being SATURDAY when I post it.  :)  Thanks to Mama M at My Little Life for the questions!

1. What are you most afraid of?
Hmmm...probably losing one of my children.  I pray that I can grow old with my husband with my children and their families close by.  Oh, and if you recall a couple weeks ago I said my extended family would have some Noah-ish years...yeah still praying that one too.
2. Do you use a flat iron or curling iron?
Curling iron?? HA HA HA! Um, no.  Flat iron, maybe once or twice a year.  If you know me, you know I have naturally curly hair.  It takes about an hour or so to straighten it, which doesn't seem like a long time to some people, but when I'm used to taking about 20-25 minutes to get ready (start to finish including shower...) then an hour is a LONG time.  Also, 3 toddlers could get into A LOT of mischief in that time......

3. Hands-free or phone to the ear?
Phone to ear, mostly because I don't have a hands-free anymore.  My blue-tooth ear piece broke and I'm too cheap to buy a new one right now.  It doesn't bother me to hold the phone though (generally).

4. Do you have a matching bedroom set?
YES!!!  It is my parents' set from when they owned a house and it was all made by my father!  A nice bed, a GORGEOUS armoire (and if you've ever helped them or us move, you know it's fairly large...) and a side table.  Love it, love it, love it.  My daddy made it sometime when we lived in Baraboo (so sometime between 7th grade and end of high school...) and I always told them I wanted it.  SO, good thing they sold their house so we could have it. :)  Thanks Mom and Dad!

5. Do you believe in the paranormal?

No.  'Nuff said. :) 

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Face Only a Mother Could Love

It's about time to update some pics. :) Sorry for the delay, it just hasn't been a priority.  The past couple months have been chock full of "stuff!"  Aiden's first birthday, little Caleb's first school Christmas program, Christmas, and lots of other "stuff!" So, here are some pictures for you to enjoy.  I didn't pull in a lot of Christmas photos because you really don't need to see all the spoiling my children received.  Just trust me when I say the pictures are cute! :)

So, December 1st marked Aiden's 1st birthday!!  Hard to believe he's already over a year (almost 14 months now, YIKES!).  This time has just flown by!  A week or so after his actual birthday, we celebrated with a little cake just for him.  Grammy came through again with the little personal size teddy bear cake.
Preparing for the cake....Mmmmmmmmm...beaters!
Now each of the kids has had their go at the teddy bear.  Not sure which one was the cleanest, I just know they were ALL messy. Ha!

I think he likes it. :)

And once again, I am *that* mom...matching sweaters...c'mon, aren't they cute??

Little Caleb had his pre-K Christmas program in December and he was so excited to sing his songs.  They sang "Happy Birthday Jesus," "C'mon Ring Those Bells," and then performed "5 Little Snowmen."  I personally thought the "5 Little Snowmen" was a little disturbing because they all lost their heads!  4 year olds singing about snowmen losing their heads??  Eh, made me laugh too.  Here he is on stage.

My mom outdid herself again this year and made some adorable costumes for the kids so they could perform a little skit for us at Christmas.

Caleb was a shepherd.....

Abby was the angel...
and Aiden was the sheep.

First Abby came running in and told Caleb "Do not fear I bring you good news! A baby is born in a manger, let's go!" Then they sang "The First Noel" for us.  I was waiting for Abby to come running in "Shazam!" just like the angel from "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever."  Maybe next year.

My parents and Chris and Em came to visit for a few days over Christmas, and as they were packing up, Uncle Chris came downstairs and pulled little Caleb into the bathroom to give him some spiky hair.  Lilguy thought that was SOOOO much fun and he kept touching his hair the rest of the day.  This picture shows how much lilguy and Uncle Chris look alike.... :)

The hippo is also on the 3rd kid and Aiden loves to use it.  If he takes off somewhere, it's generally because he wants to find the hippo.  His favorite thing is to either sit in it and have lilguy push him around the house, or he has lilguy sit in it and HE pushes.  It's very cute to watch and listen to as well since there are generally loads of giggles coming from the vicinity of the hippo. :)

And last (for now) a pic of Aiden and Daddy...my mom made these fleece hats for each of the kids and a matching one for Daddy.  I thought I had a picture with all three kids and Caleb wearing the hats, but apparently I don't. :(  Just imagine that it's cute.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Five Question Friday!!

My Little Life

So a friend of mine does this, and I thought it might be fun, so here goes! Thanks to My Little Life for the questions!

1. What is better, growing old with out money or dying young and wealthy?
Hmm...I'd like to say it's an easy one, but it really depends! I'd love to grow old with my family all intact (including parents/grandparents/in-laws and out-laws so get ready for some Noah-ish years of living!) but that's just as selfish as saying I want to die young wealthy, right? Kinda not really, ok fine. I'd rather grow old without money then. :)

Who takes out the garbage at your house?
My husband. If there was a 32nd chapter in Proverbs, it would say "a good husband shall take out the family garbage" or something like that....

Have you ever had the same dream many times?
No, although pregnancy brought some funky dreams, never really had the same dream more than once.

Can you play a musical instrument?

Can is such an *odd* word...I *can* play the piano and trumpet; however, I haven't touched a trumpet in almost 15 years and the piano, well, that never went too much further than Fur Elise.

5. If you owned your own store, what would you sell?
Ooh, ooh, ooh...I would sell fabric. NO, I would sell purses. No wait, I would sell fabric. Actually a craft store would be GREAT (and I just bet I could get my mom to help once in awhile...)