Friday, October 28, 2005

Isn't she gorgeous?!

Someday soon my daughter, Ava Beth, will want a kitchen of her own! A make believe kitchen with a stove, sink, refrigerator, fake food, and maybe even a dishwasher. Oh and I can't wait for the day she begs for an Easy Bake Oven! I always wanted one of those as a little girl so it will be fun teaching her how to use her's someday. I can easily live my Easy Bake dream through her! Cooking and Baking is something I truly love. Finding new recipes or sharing one with a friend or a friend sharing a new one with me is something I appreciate a great deal. Just today I spent the day with a very good friend that is a fabulous cook. I like to call her Rachel Ray because my friend Courtney is the true meaning of a cook. She is creative, she knows short cuts, she knows things to add to her food that will make it have a certain taste, she just knows how to make food taste good. Often I am overwhelmed when I get a new recipe or get one off of a show on The Food Network because it is so detailed. But Courtney has spurred on a new "Go get 'em" attitude for me when it comes to making new things. When cooking dinner, I sometimes call her and ask how she would cook this or that. She is my go to for cooking! So thank you Court! You are one that has added so much flavor to the Hayes' weekly menu. Jeremy appreciates you too!

So now I am too old for an Easy Bake Oven and I would probably grow bored with baking cakes , that just need water added, real soon. Now I am on to bigger and better things, a KitchenAid Mixer! My dream, my desire, my want, my need, my everything is this fabulous stand up mixer! She is gorgeous and I can hear her mixing right now (in my mind). She is full of pumpkin, flour, sugar, vanilla, baking powder, baking soda, etc. and she is mixing the most delicious pumpkin bread you've ever tasted!!! Wow, she works beautifully. While she was mixing, I was spraying my pans with Baker's Joy (the pump instead of the spray is better, Courtney says), pre-heating the oven, and taking a sip of my Pumpkin Spice Latte, while "Paula" (this is what I would name her, after Paula Deen) was mixing my pumpkin bread. Usually the pumpkin bread injures my arm as I stir and stir and stir and stir and stir and stir the ingredients. Have you ever heard of carpal tunnel? This beautiful mixer would actually make my health better so I know it is a must have! Doesn't the bible tell us that God will give us the desires of our heart? And what about giving us bread instead of a stone? Oh and keep asking, keep knocking!!!??? Thanksgiving is almost here and it is at MY HOUSE this year, I think that "Paula" needs to find a home here, in my kitchen.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Fast Food Mom and Loving It!

Here's the truth people, I love fast food! Yep, I love it! I don't eat it every single day but I promise you that I eat it at least once a week and some times more. If the kids and I have been shopping or running errands all day, we have been known to grab some food while we are out. I remember when I was pregnant with Ava Beth, Josiah and I would be at Target doing some Christmas shopping and we would eat in the Target snack bar. They have the best personal pan pizza!! Yummy! Or even now while we are out and about, I will treat Josiah to chicken nuggets and a small sprite. Yes, I let my toddler have a fountain drink. My ten month old loves chicken nuggets too! Don't worry, I give her tiny pieces so she won't choke. Now, we are not a McDonald's kind of family, thank goodness because in 2006 they will begin putting nutritional information on food items. That's right, you will actually be able to see how many calories are in your quarter pounder with cheese. Uh, no thanks!! That takes the enjoyment right out of my fast food experience. So, we are a Wendy's kind of family. The Value menu is amazing for us because everything is ninety-nine cents! We love the chicken nuggets, side caesar salad, junior bacon cheesebuger, and the yummy, salty french fries! Are you starving yet? Well, Wendy's is our kind of quick meal. Am I teaching my kids to love fast food? I think I am. If we were customers of Wendy's every single day, then that would be a different story but fast food is wonderful and I think every kid should get to eat it! Oh and Mom too!

A while back I had a fellow Mom question me about what I allow my son to eat. Josiah and I were invited to her home for lunch but we were supposed to bring our own food. So, we did! I went straight through the drive through at Wendy's and got our delicious lunch. Other moms had packed PB &J, grapes, raisins, and juice boxes. My son had chicken nuggets and a small sprite (he doesn't like fries, how weird is that!). This other mom said, "You let him eat chicken nuggets and a fountain drink? Wow! I don't think I could do that with my kids. It's not healthy." Now those of you that truly KNOW me, KNOW that I was extremely tempted to answer with a sarcastic answer, BUT I didn't. I just wrote about it instead! HA! So, what did I say? "Yeah, I do. It's easy, he loves chicken nuggets and getting him his own drink is a special treat." The other Mom says, "That is just not a healthy lunch though, how do you make sure he is getting proper nutrition?" Then I say, "I don't. His weight is normal (better than your little bean sprout nerdy, kid eating his raisins and drinking his soy milk over there!) and his well checks at the Doctor are fine so I don't worry about that kind of stuff." I walked away that day so proud of myself, seriously! I was so proud of the Mom I am. I don't worry about a lot of stuff with my kids. I even let Josiah have drinks out of my Dr. Pepper sometimes and would you believe that I gave him a Pop Tart for breakfast yesterday?? Would that freak that other mom out or what?!

Oh, I gotta go now! I gave Josiah a Red Bull a little while ago and he won't get off the ceiling!! What is the deal with that kid?

(If you are a mom that gives your child soy milk, I am not trying to offend you. Just don't look down on moms like me that give my kids whole milk. I don't look down on you. We are all in this together.)

Monday, October 24, 2005

Don't Interrupt

For the past few weeks I have been teaching my son, Josiah, to not interrupt Mommy while she is talking. It all started when we were at the Pediatrician's office and the nurse Practitioner was trying to explain something to me regarding the Flu shot. Josiah kept saying, "Mommy, Mommy, Mommy, I want to do the puzzle, I want to do the puzzle." Finally, I looked at him and said, "Josiah, Mommy is talking. Please wait until I am finished." Much to my surprise, he stopped! How did I get a little boy that will be three years old in a couple of months to quit interrupting me? Well, I think the first time was pure luck! After that day, I continued working with him on this concept. Whenever he would talk over me or try to ask me a question while I was talking, I would tell him "Mommy is talking Josiah, please wait and then I will talk to you." This child continues to amaze me because He is actually catching on. When He hears me talking to someone, he says "Mommy is talking. Wait." Just yesterday He showed me that He not only understands this concept but He expects me to understand it too. Without even thinking, I begin to talk while He was talking to me and He said, "Bubba's talking." While trying to teach Him a lesson, He taught me one.

This morning I started reading The Purpose Driven Life. I started reading it a few years ago but I never did finish. Lately I have been asking myself a lot of questions and I have spent way too much time trying to figure out why things have happened the way they have. From bad events to good events, from friendships to family members, why do certain things happen the way they do? In a blog I posted a few weeks ago, I talked about pain. What do we do with our pain? What purpose does it serve? As I face certain questions in my walk, I have grown weary trying to figure it all out. How can I hear His voice? How can I truly understand and know His purpose for my life? This morning as I spent time in prayer, I finally heard something. "I am talking. Please do not interrupt. Wait until I am finished." It seems that I am too busy talking that I can't hear Him. It's not so much a verbal kind of talking, it's more of my day to day routine. How can I possibly find out His direction for my daily walk, if I can't hear Him talking? Some of you are wondering what you should do about a job or a career change. Do you pursue it or do you wait for something else? Some are in a relationship that you are not sure you should be in. Have you stopped to truly hear God's voice? What church should you attend? Have you settled? What about your friendships? Do they build you up or are you spending time with people that tear you down. Whatever it is in your life that you can't seem to understand, God is wanting you to stop, ask and listen. Are you at a place where you can hear Him answer you? He may be saying, "I am talking. Please do not interrupt. Wait until I am finished."

"If you need wisdom, if you want to know what God wants you to do, ask Him and He will gladly tell you." James 1:5 (NLT)

Thursday, October 20, 2005

"My Romance"

Hearing the sound of a beautiful trumpet is one of my most favorite sounds. Hearing a trumpet being played by Chris Botti is even more delicious. Music has always been a huge part of my life. I truly believe that when I was born, my Mother was singing a song because I have been singing and in love with music my whole life. Music has been one of the greatest gifts God has given me. It soothes me, it intoxicates me, it changes me. Currently, I am listening to one of the most amazing musicians I have ever heard, Chris Botti. His music brings about a pleasant oasis for me. My mind begins to dream, my heart begins to dance and my ears take me to places that I love. The places I have yet to see, the places I have yet to dream and the places I have already been, it takes me there. Beautiful music will do wonders for your soul, it has for me my whole life. "My Romance" is a song I truly adore on this CD. Just listening to this song takes me back to the moment I knew I was in love with Jeremy. It takes me to the night He told me He loved me and to the night He proposed. Riding a Moped together in Maui or walking on the beach, this songs takes me to the place. "My Romance" takes me to the day after my wedding when He said, "Good morning wife" for the very first time. "My Romance" takes me to Winter Park, Colorado where we spent our Honeymoon in a cabin up in the mountains. From the birth of our babies to the nights of love that brought them here, "My Romance" is for me, for my love and for all that is to come.

"I have found the one whom my soul loves." Song of Solomon 3:4