Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Molly update...pray now more than ever!

Below it yet another update from Molly's parents....

The stimulation test went very well. Molly was exhausted and still did better than most. They told us that the test usually takes two days for kids her age but they were able to get all the information they needed in one day (even with a computer failure that delayed it 2 hours and required a replacement computer). That is answered prayer. The results of the test indicate that the location of the big seizures that we are accustomed to seeing is located in an operable spot on the brain. As I said before there are other places on her brain causing seizures that they cannot take away. So they do not believe that they can take them away totally, but they believe that the re-section can possibly eliminate the big ones and medicines can then control (stop) the others. They gave us a 30-50% chance of this.

Without the surgery they believe controlling seizures is 3-5% chance. We believe that right thing to do is to go forward with this surgery. It's an agonizing decision because of what is actually going to happen to her, but we feel that it gives her a chance to control these seizures which is a chance that she does not have if we do nothing. So at 11:00 am on Thursday morning she will go back to surgery to have this small section removed. There are some possible deficits that can occur due to this procedure. She may not be able to talk, walk or use her right side. They are all temporary and could take anywhere from days to months to recover. There is no telling whether or not she will have any of these problems but they are a possibility.
So here is the latest list of specifics to pray for.

Pray that Molly feels like she is lying in the palm of God's hand especially for the next few days.
Pray that the surgery has no complications and that it leaves no deficits.
Pray the surgery results in a life of controlled seizures for Molly.
Pray for the peace that passes all understanding be present in our hearts ( we have felt it).
Pray that the hearts of Molly’s caretakers are turned towards the Lord somehow through this ordeal.

When Molly was born 8 years ago we almost lost her. I still remember what my wife said, “Let's pray for everything and praise Him for anything.” We are back to that state of mind again. We take great comfort in knowing that Molly is being taken before the Throne by the fervent prayers of some righteous Saints. We take great comfort in knowing that the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe knew about Molly’s journey before the earth began. We humbly thank you in advance for your prayers.
Chad and Christine



Okay so if I haven't already told you Fall is my favorite season...spring would be a close second! I love sweatshirt weather, although this week it has been windy and made the weather pretty chilly! So last night for the first time we fired up the corn/pellet stove!!! Ohhh how I look forward to having that stove on....I love the glow it gives off and the warmth it provides!! Last night after firing it up the kids grabbed the bean bags and we read in front of it for about 30-45 minutes before bed. Doesn't get much better than that!!!

And the night before last Justin and the boys were outside doing some work and when they came in they were naturally we had to break out the HOT CHOCOLATE!!!
Caleb enjoyed every sip!
Even though Julia was inside with me, she thought she needed some too!
Zach also officially learned how to ride a bike without training to come!


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Another Molly Update!

Here is a little blurb from Carepages, which a place were Molly's parents keep everyone informed of their ever changing journey. I copied and pasted it directly from their site.

Well, it's been unpleasant, to say the least. I think the worst part, after the amount of seizures Molly has had, is that they were in no way typical of what we see at home. Makes us wonder and question, and right now, it's wait and see what the Dr. says.I had called from RMH a little after midnight, and Molly was peacefully sleeping. I missed Chad's first two texts which began around 2:30AM. Short story is lots of short, small seizures, several rescue meds given in between, and then more small seizures. Right now Molly is on IV dilantin, and if that doesn't work, they'll give her more ativan. So we wait. Wait on what the Drs. have seen, wait to see if her seizures calm down, wait to see if Drs. need more, because they weren't typical...Chad and I are both feeling tested right now. We are discouraged by what we see. Please pray we will trust in God's amazing plan, even if He tells us 'no' to a scar tissue removal surgery here in Cleveland. Please also pray for Molly's comfort, especially her itchy head. Grandpa and I have had to stop her more than once to keep the dressing from working its way up and off her head. Please pray for Chad. He's attempting to sleep at RMH after a night that he'll never forget. I'm feeling some regret that I wasn't here to bear the burden with him. I know, God is using all of this for good, and you all are absolutely standing in the gap for us, but I am struggling to let God win the battle of the mind right now. So, that's it. Thanks for continuing to lift us up. Will let you know what we know by end of the day.
With love and gratitude,Christine (and Chad)

I think it goes without saying that Molly is in need of more prayers at this time. So again I ask for your continued prayers for this little girl who is being put through so much in order to get some conclusive answers. Also in case you were wondering RMH=Ronald McDonald House


Labyrinth Balance Board Review/Giveaway!!

When Challenge & Fun Inc. contacted me about reviewing some of their products I was so
thrilled!! The first product we are reviewing is the Labyrinth Balance Board. This is a “Made in USA” wooden product that encourages children to be active and is fun for all ages (5+). When it arrived I was the first one to try it out....I just couldn't resist! Well let's just say this Mama needs some practice. I quickly found out that it is not as easy as it looks.

Lance (8yrs) tried it out next, he thought it was great fun and didn't want to stop playing. Lance also thought it was fun to play this game with his hand while kneeling on the ground...which might be a great option for some of the younger than five years old kiddos.

Caleb(6yrs) thought he was such hot stuff he tried doing two balls at one time. He soon found out the same thing I ball is hard enough...

Zach (4yrs) was giggling the whole time...and cheating because he was hanging onto the table!

We had lots of fun and laughs while testing out the Labyrinth Balance Board. There is a little postcard that comes with the board for games ideas.

The only drawback I would say about the Labyrinth Balance Board is that it is a sizable game that might be a challenge to find a place to store it. It is a made in USA...LOVE THAT!!! It is made out of solid wood making it extremely durable....I LOVE that with having three boys. I also like the fact that it secretly helps the kids with their balance and core strength in a sneaky fun way...

The Labyrinth Balance Board retails for around $80.00, and you can go here to purchase one......but Challenge and Fun Inc. has generously offered to GIVE ONE AWAY FROM THE GAERTEGANG!!!!!!
DEADLINE is October 9,2009 at NOON!

Here are the ways you can enter (Leave a separate comment for each entry!)
USA entries only.

1. Follow Gaertegang (Which means your pic is seen under "Followers of this blog" on the left)
2. Subscribe to Gaertegang
3. Grab my Button!! (2 entries)
4. Enter the Madeline-Marie Studio Studio giveaway
5. Face Book about this to this post
6. Follow me on Twitter
7. Twitter about this giveaway
8. Blog about the giveaway!


Marie-Madeline Studio Giveaway!

About a month ago I saw that Marie-Madeline Studios was having sale, 50% of selected fabric, and I decided to dive in and get some fabric for a skirt pattern that I have had my eyes on. The Gracie Ruffle pattern had been drawing me back to their site again and again. I am what a great idea it would be for me to get some of their great quality fabric and make my little Julia a skirt for a Christmas gift! I also bought their Emerson Skirt Pattern to make her yet another adorable gift. No, I have not been able to make them yet....but you can be sure I will post pics of it when I finish do...I do have till Christmas to complete it though...There is a fantastic step-by-step instructional on how to make these adorable flowers...which I am planning on making also!
Marie-Madeline Studios was sweet enough to offer to giveaway of GRACIE RUFFLE you can make your own princess a skirt too!!

Deadline for entries is October 9, 2009 at NOON!!
Open to Us entries only.

Ways to enter (Leave a seperate comment for each entry)

1. Visit Marie-Madeline Studio and tell me your favorite pattern!
2. Sign up to follow Marie-Madeline's Blog and tell me you did.
4. Subscribe to GARTEGANG.
5. Grab my button! (2 entries)
6. Follow me on Twitter.
7. Twitter about the giveaway!
8. Blog about the giveaway!
9. Face Book about the giveaway!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Molly Update

Thanks to all of you who have been praying for Molly's her surgery went well and they now continue to monitor her seizure activity. They have now taken her off all her meds and now strange is may sounds are wanting seizures....I will keep you informed of any new developments as I know them.

I just got back from family vacation, we were gone Thursday through Sunday...which I why I was delayed in letting you know the update on Molly. Today is full of laundry catch up and hanging out with my two youngest. My two oldest boys are gone for the I will posts pics and details of our vacation in the days to come.

OHHHH ya and there are two new giveaways coming as soon as I can get them up :)


Thursday, September 24, 2009

Things I LOVE Thursday!

I haven't posted a "Things I Love Thursday" in a little while so I thought I would share this one...

I am a home body of sorts. I love being home and doing things around the house, in the garden, amongst the flowers. Don't get me wrong, I love the chances I get to be out and about also, but I am not the type of person who likes to be on the run ALL THE TIME....just not for me.

I LOVE lazy days of just milling about the yard and playing with the kids, the dogs, and the cats. Caleb is such an animal LOVER!! I was able to grab of couple of pics of him just laying around on the grass with the dogs. This pic is my favorite the dogs are actually hugging each can see their paws are interlocked with each other..funny huh? They are great dogs and let the kids just do anything to them! Caleb loves to lay on the ground with them while they love on him with their kisses and nudging.
If you want to see more things other people love join Sarah Here!!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009


I wanted to take the time to share with you an opportunity for you to be a PRAYER WARRIOR. There is a very special little girl at our church who is getting ready to have brain surgery. She is 8 years old and had been having seizures for about 3 years. The medications they have tried have not been able to stop the frequency of the seizures. Instead she has three different types of seizures now....recently one of those types of seizures has stopped, without any complete logical explanation (there is a 1% chance that a med they stopped could be to credit for this). I am not an expert on her situation nor am I even knowable about all the details, but I do know that she is a beautiful little 8 year old girl that LOVES the Lord Jesus. Knowing that she is my sister in Christ, makes my heart ache for her situation, but brings me to my knees in prayer on her and her family's behalf. I hope you will join in prayer for MOLLY as she goes into a procedure in the next 24 hours where they will cut open her brain and insert probes that will detect the seizure activity and where in the brain this all is taking place....leave the probes in for however long it takes to get a proper reading and mapping of her brain for the surgeons. (They expect this to take anywhere from a couple days to a week in my understanding) After they go through this procedure they will then decide if she is a candidate for the type of surgery, then her parents will have to make a decision a from there. Please note that during this time she will, for lack of better words that her head "open" (they can not totally seal the incision)...and bandaged because of the probes doing their work.
So if you would be willing to pray for MOLLY and her family here are a few things you can be praying....

1. No infection would result during this first surgery and waiting time
2. That the doctor on her case would be diligent in their work without mistakes
3. Wisdom on behalf of the doctors as they advise MOLLY'S parents
4. Peace for MOLLY as she goes through this uncertain time
5. Strength for MOLLY'S parents and siblings as they are apart in the weeks to come
6. Safety for visitors traveling to and from the hospital to see MOLLY (about a 3 hour trip)
7. Spiritual endurance, that as believers in Christ they would always choose HIM over the lies and worries Satan tries to attack them with.
8. For the family to continue to be a beacon of light to others (medical staff, other patients, other families) as they endure this trial God has dealt them.

If you would like to commit to praying for MOLLY for 15 minutes sometime in the next 24 hours, please leave me a comment and let me know that.

If you would like to send this special family a message of any kind again leave a comment....

Here is how to leave a comment in case you never have before
...go to the bottom of this post where you see my name right under that you should see COMMENT click it. You then will see other people's comments....scroll down to the comment box, write your message; don't forget to sign you name then click the arrow by COMMENT AS then choose Anonymous at the bottom.....Finally click POST COMMENT.....CONGRATS you posted our first comment!

To see how you can pray for other visit Megan here each Wednesday!


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

First Ever Perennial Party!

This past Saturday morning we gathered at 930am to start off the first perennial flower party!! We were very pleased with the turn out for being our first go at the whole idea. Around 25 people participated and over 200 plants/seeds were exchanged!!!! It went to well that people suggested that we hold one in the spring and then another in the fall next year......I think that is a wonderful idea I'm in!!!
We decided to label areas where plants we distributed....FULL sun, PART sun, shade, and seeds....I am glad we did so it worked out great. Because even if someone didn't know the name of something they brought you at least knew what type of sun it needed....
As you can see the table were over flowing with lots of GREAT much that we put things on the table and then under the tables....Oh so fun!!

For me it was such a blessing to be with so many other people who love flowers as much as I do. I loved that we were able to send so many ladies home with flowers that were unable to bring any flowers....What a great day, great weather, great experience! I can't wait to do it all over again in the spring......So if you live nearby and missed this one keep your ears open in the spring for the next one!



Monday, September 21, 2009

Birthday Night Celebration!

Friday night after our oldest son finished his soccer practice, Hubby took us all out to eat to celebrate my B-day! Let me just tell you that I LOVE and ADORE all of my wonderful four children, but going out to eat at a sit down restaurant is not usually a relaxing enjoyable experience. It is not something we do very often...I want to say we only BRAVE it 2-3 times a year maybe. So I was thinking....I'd rather be selfish and do a date night....but let's give it a whirl and see how it goes......Well I am happy to report that the whole night from start to finish was really GREAT!! Everyone had such fun, showed me that they really do remember the manners I work so hard to teach them....even though they act like they have none at home at our table..AHEM....We laughed, we joked, nothing was spilled..yet again another milestone in our dining experience....I was so glad at the end of the night that we all enjoyed my B-day supper together...ya never know the year is still young we just might try it again sometime soon!
I picked a little Mexican restaurant complete with unlimited chips and salsa....Yummy!! Although I thought it was funny that our waitress had to keep filling up our chips basket and salsa bowls every 5 minutes.....I was thinking she should get us 2 baskets of chips and leave the salsa at our table so we could refill it ourselves.....with 6 of us it would have made her life a little easier......we were sure to leave her a good
As I was paying for the supper, I came back to the table were the crew was waiting. Justin, for a reason unknown to me, was encouraging a burping game with Lance. He is very gifted in this area and LOUD might I I had to hurry and scurry them out of the restaurant, which thankfully was loud with people visiting so they didn't notice the "game" at our table. Sometimes I just have to laugh and know...yep they are their father's son.....GOD LOVE EM'

Thanks for all the kind birthday wishes you all showered me with, I so loved reading everyone of them! I am looking forward to see how the Lord works on me in the next year and blesses my family. A special thanks to my hubby for a FUN night out, my mother-in-law for the yummy b-day supper on Saturday night, and my Hubby again for making enough food to feed and army while I was at church on Sunday and he stayed home with two of the kiddos. HOW SPOILED I am to not have to cook all weekend and now we should be set on left overs for many days to come...LIFE IS GOOD!



Friday, September 18, 2009

SpellQuizzer/ Lauren Nicole Winners!!!

Congrats to MOMININ for winning the SpellQuizzer Giveaway!!

Congrats to Christa for being entry #30 (in honor of my BIG DAY) for the Lauren Nicole Cross Necklace!!!!

I have sent you both an email with the details...thanks to all who entered!! More giveaways starting soon!!


Yep! It's True...Today I'm 30!

Well it is official, I am now THIRTY!!! Sounds funny to me, I still feel 18.....I think that is a good thing. If your interested in getting to know me a little more you can read my testimony here. That will bring you up to speed on what has made me who I am thus far in this journey called life. A few things I thought I might point out to see if anyone else can relate:

After 4 kids and 10 years (almost) of marriage, I think is obvious that some things have changed over the years for me. I have learned that is really is true that kids change your life forever.....I will never be able to go to the bathroom by myself for my children fear that I might need help, I will never be able to sleep in because they love be up EARLY....bummer...until they reach their teens, I will never have a clean house for more than 15 after they walk in the door, Being a referee is my part time job (on some days my FULL time job), I will never have a truly clean, non-smelly toilet because I live with 4 men in my house.
All that said I wouldn't have it any other way.....Well maybe I would prefer some things to be a tiny bit different.....but all those things let me know that I am just where I want to be in life. Being a Mom, Loving my Hubby, chasing dogs out of my flower beds, and canning enough food this time of year for a small army is JUST WHERE I WANT TO BE!!!

So I am thinking 30 is going to look pretty good on me if I do say so myself.

Hope you have a great weekend!


Praying For Our Children Day Five

Here is the last installment of the series:

1. That God would give them a love for people.
2. That eternity would burn in their hearts.
3. That their goals in life would involve reaching the world for Christ.
4. That they would be kept physically safe from all harm.
5. That they would be kept from the love of money.
6. That they would learn to pray fervently.

I hope you have been encouraged to take time daily to pray for specific needs for your children. If you no longer have children at home or you don't have any yet you could still pray for grandchildren or for the family you will have in years to come.

Here is the link to the entire series if you want to review.....



Thursday, September 17, 2009

Praying For Our Children Day Four

THANKS for checking in with the Gaertegang for the FOURTH day of this series:

1. That the Word of God would become their final authority.
2. That they would hide the Word of God in their hearts.
3. That they would seek the Lord's will in all they do.
4. That they would grow in true wisdom and knowledge.
5. That they would be morally pure.
6. That they would have a proper view of God.
7. That their minds would be protected from false religions and humanism.

If you missed the first three days here are the links: DAY ONE, DAY TWO, DAY THREE



Wednesday, September 16, 2009


FAITH LIKE POTATOES is a movie we have available in our church library and hubby picked it up this past weekend for us to watch. It is based on a true story of a white farmer that lives in South Africa that goes through some hardships. During the course of the movie he discovers his true purpose in life and becomes a great testimony of faith through Jesus Christ. I would recommend this movie I thought it was a really moving story that challenges me to push forward in my walk with the Lord.

The movie is rated PG for an accident scene, mild language (I don't believe I heard any cursing), and some smoking.



Praying For Our Children Day Three

Here is the third installment on HOW TO PRAY FOR OUR CHILDREN
If you would like to see Day One go here and for Day Two go here.

1. That they would respect authority and pray for them.
2. That they would have the heart of a servant.
3. That sin would always be distasteful to them and they would be easily broken over their disobedience.
4. That they would honor their father and mother.
5. That our children would love each other.
6. That they would love to give to meet the needs of others.


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Praying For Our Children Day two

Here is the prayer list for Tuesday. If you are just getting joining us and missed Monday's list you can go HERE.


1. That they would remove all doubtful habits.
2. That they would be delivered from all influences of the enemy.
3. That all bitterness would be rooted out of their lives.
4. That all anger would be replaced with patience.
5. That they would learn to walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh.
6. That they would remove themselves from the influences of wrong friends.

CurrClick Newletters

I honestly don't remember how I found out about CurrClick, but I can assure you it was from some wonderful Blogger...sorry I don't remember which one!! Anyway they (CurrClick) sends me a email newletter each week that always includes something FREE for the week...example downloadable and printable materials that I can use with schooling or just for FUN!! HERE is the link in case you are interested in getting the same weekly emails and FREE stuff....

I so far have downloaded several great FREEBIES...just thought I would share!


Monday, September 14, 2009

Marie Madeline Sales on WEEK!!!

Over at Marie-Madeline Studio they are having sales each day this week in honor of their Mom's B-day!!! If you scroll down on the left hand side of my side bar you will find a link to their website (the link above is to their blog where they will announce the sales each day).....their first sale starts at Midnight tonight!!! 45% off of AVA ROSE and FRENCH HATBOX fabric ONE DAY ONLY!!! YIPPEE!! If you have any projects in mind you might want to snag some fabric at a great price!


Making Friends Monday!

Friend Making Monday series is hosted here if you want to check out what others have to say. The question this week is "What are your favorite fall shows?"
Well my favorite shows don't change for each season, but they all are on PBS..nerdy I know!

This Old House
P. Allen Smith Garden show
Antique Road Show
Garden Smart
Cook's Country (used to be called America's Test Kitchen)

I don't get much TV time around here, but I do try to watch these shows when I remember they are on. I do seem to watch more TV during the winter months than any other time...How about you does your amount of TV time go up during any certain season? One thing I do know is that if we had cable...if were not so cheap; we just can't stand the thought of paying for TV....I would never get anything done because I would be to busy watching anything on HGTV!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE that channel....hubby not so much!!



Praying For Our Children Day One

I thought I would share with you the information in this little insert that I carry in my Bible. I got it about six and half years ago when a Revival Team, called Life Action, visited our church. This insert is broke down into "HOW TO PRAY FOR YOUR CHILDREN" then every day of the week there is a list of six to seven areas to specifically pray for you children. Although it is obvious that I really love this insert and the idea of it, I am ashamed to say that I have lacked consistency in praying for my children. I pray in general for them and their safety daily, but not in a detailed way which I desire to do. It makes me angry that I struggle with this because my heart desire is there, but I let "life" get in the way of my follow through.....lame I know, but the truth non the less. So each day this week I will share with you day by day the areas you can pray for you children. I am hoping through sharing this struggle with you all and my determination to make my prayer life more of what I think the Lord would be pleased with.


1. Their Salvation
2. Their mate would be godly and kept morally pure.
3. That God would keep them from evil.
4. That they would keep a clear conscience.
5. That their character would valuable to them than their credentials.
6. That they would stand up for what is right, even if it means standing alone.
7. That they would not compare themselves to others but with CHRIST.



Garden Update!

Well the totals are.......For the most part everything that I have planted in our garden this year has been harvested, cleaned, and canned!! (with the exception of a some more tomatoes)
WHEW!!! God had blessed us with an abundance this year!!

Salsa 52 quarts
Juice 50 quarts
Sp. Sauce 42.5 quarts
Green Beans 28 quarts
Corn 15 quarts

I am thinking maybe I will try my hand at some pizza sauce and maybe even some tomato soup....if I get the recipe from Justin's cousin......At this point just thinking might be all I do till next year....I'll keep you posted!



Saturday, September 12, 2009

Breath Taking....

Last week we had an entire week of temps in the low 80's and just gorgeous weather....I snapped a pic of the sky and just sat in wonder of how beautiful the day was. I am afraid in this season of my life I don't take the time to do that often enough. I just love those "cotton ball" clouds.....and the blueness of the sky as their backdrop. So today I am encouraging you to take a moment and really take in the beauty of creation that our Lord has gifted to us.



Friday, September 11, 2009

Who's Idea Was It?

So I am wondering this morning, who's idea was it to get two puppies? Oh ya, it was mine....Hmmm what was I thinking? Well let's just say that the puppies which are now around eight months old are getting into everything. Each morning for about the past 2 weeks we have woken up and looked outside to find a new mess they have created during the night hours. Grrrr...Well the boys are getting tired of cleaning up after them constantly because with their sharp teeth they shred everything...making pick up a little time consuming! In order to aid in avoiding these messes we have moved EVERYTHING they could possible even think of destroying, chewing, ect. inside one of our barn......ya well we should have did this after the first mess......So now we are thinking we have things under control and have saved ourselves the frustration of paper, trash, or recycling being drug all over our yard!!!!!

Well this am I open the door so the boys can go out and feed the dogs/cats...and what do I find?

I found Lance's ABeka DVD curriculum chewed up and spread all over the yard....Ohhhhhh my, let's just say Mom was fit to be tied!!! I am sure it is not a moment I am going to brag about nor one I am proud of.....I PANICKED!!!!!!!!!!!! My first thought was "How in the world did these get outside?" I am the only one in the house that is aloud to even touch them......They are in our school cabinet area...which no one is suppose to be into either......My next thought was "I wonder how much this is going to cost us?" They have strict rules on the care of the DVD's and they have to be returned in the same box they come in...blah...blah...Then one of the kiddos who was already cleaning up the mess brought me two of the DVD's (they were chewed in half!!) and I saw that is said lesson 75...and the other lesson 115......then it dawned on me that the UPS man had paid us a visit (after we had left for my mom's yesterday to do more canning)....I got home around 1030pm and I didn't see the package left at my front door (we use the back door to come in and out of the house.)

So another lesson learned....Puppies can and will chew through an entire cardboard box and then proceed to chew through the hard plastic case that contains the DVD's....oh no they didn't stop there with their fun....they then chew threw the DVD's as well......All this on a full belly because "Yes, they were fed and watered!!!" I AM AMAZED!!! I annoyed that these FREE puppies cost me a $75 dollar damage fee I have to add to an already rather expensive curriculum.....They are just puppies so I am forcing myself to just chalk it up to this......(knowing that before long I will look back and chuckle at this whole drama scence.)

LIVE AND LEARN.....I have now asked to be informed via email when a package is on the way...which I thought they were going to do in the first place....



Another Invention by LANCE

Here is my beloved inventor getting ready to launch his latest creation. If you know Lance, he LOVES to invent things.....I mean constantly!!!! While we love that he is so creative and always trying to come up with the next best thing, he is always breaking into Dad's tools to make creative adjustments. He prides himself on finding things from the trash in the garage...things Dad has thrown out (that means they are fair game right?) In case you have a hard time figuring it out he has made a little scooter to ride down our hill here by the house...Nice huh? (I personally am loving the bungee strapped seat...very stylish)

Although it looks great....the testing of this invention did not go as well as was expected...The wheels kept falling he's tweaking it to get it just right!



Thursday, September 10, 2009

Do your kids ever Drive you Crazy?

I new blog I have started to follow is Heavenly Homemakers. She wrote this really GREAT post here just a few days ago and I wanted to share it with you all. It made me laugh, tear up m and then encouraged me all within the same 3-5 minute time frame.......You'll be sure to be blessed by what she has to ahead now click on the link!!



Mama Buzz

I thought I would share some exciting news with you all......I found out about a new program starting up called MAMA BUZZ. It is a group of Christian Mommy Bloggers who get to review products in their own home then you write reviews on these products (Similar to the TOS Home School Crew I think.) You get to choose which products you want to review....BONUS!!! I filled out my application and have been accepted into the program, which I am totally excited about!!! I thought I would share this with you all in case you were interested in this program for yourself. If you click on the link I have on my left sidebar that says MAMA BUZZ that will take you to the site where you can check out the requirements, rules, requirements, ect. I don't know where they stand in the process, but they were looking for the first 100 accepted applications as of late last week.

So keep your eyes peeled for some reviews to come...although I expect it to be a little while before all the details come together......



Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Food for Thought...

Since today I ran across a GREAT POST from the Happy Housewife I thought I would share it with you......talks about food prep GO HERE to check it out!!



I think I need to set the record straight on a few things!!

While I appreciate Justin taking care of last month and all, and then letting you all have a little insight into his thinking and approach. I need to set the record straight on a few things. We DO NOT eat lots of processed foods in our everyday diet.....I do make HOME COOKED meals EVERYDAY around here......Yes everything was figured into this monthly total including toilet paper,ect. I have stocked piled most of these items so toilet paper really was the only thing we needed to buy....our total was around $130-$140 for the month....and we do eat fresh fruit also....he just didn't list that....we go through 3-4 gallons of milk per week.....which was also figured into that amount.....Here is a glimpse of what we ate last month for supper meals

Meatloaf, Baked Potatoes, Green beans
Spaghetti, Cheese Garlic bread
Sweet & Sour meatballs, peas, potatoes
Hamburger Helper, Butter bread, corn
Grill Cheese sand., apple slices
sloppy joes, corn on the cob, green beans
potato soup, cornbread
pb&j, yogurts
Chili, butter bread, crackers
Rice with Chicken, corn

Really that is it then we ate left overs alot from those meals, a couple meal were ate at my mom's (b/c of canning tomatoes), we had a picnic, and a b-day party thrown in also.....

Well hopefully this helps a bit more to know what we ate for that price.....for breakfast we ate cereal (corn flakes), oatmeal muffins, chocolate chip pancakes, peanut butter toast, scrambled eggs, yogurts.

Lunches are very simple around here..that's where that mac and cheese/hots come in once a week (twice with the leftovers we eat from that), pb&j sand with fruit, grilled cheese sand. with raisins and animal crackers....very simple and quick meals for lunch.

One thing that I have learned this month is that I have to be willing to admit there are other options to feed my family in a responsible yet frugal way other than couponing.....Don't get me wrong I have loved every minute....well besides cutting them that I never loved.....but everything else I really did enjoy. Time became a big factor for me, in the way that I had to admit I was pouring so much time and energy into preparation and shopping. It saved us a ton of money and I really thought of it like a game and new it was kind of like a part-time job for me. Also in this last year I have had to come to terms with this is not where God wants me spending my time right now......yes meal planning will still be in practice and yes I will still be shopping frugally....just minus the couponing on large level. I do think that I will come back to do...I have had to surrender it in this season of my life. So I hope you have been able to at least take something from our little experiment month....If nothing else I know I have....but I am happily taking the reins again in the kitchen/meal area of our household once again.....



Garden Update!

Here is a shot of the garden....without all the pretty sunflowers...we chopped them all down this past week...
Here are my strawberry plants...WOW!!! They are doing so great, runners everywhere!!! Nice full lush plants....I can hardly wait till next year....
Not a great shot but these are some of my tomatoes...still lots of green going on....So far we have done lots of spaghetti sauce, salsa, and tomato juice. I think we are planning on one more batch of salsa and then the rest is going to juice.......although they are a blessing we are getting tired of doing tomatoes!!!
Our corn is done...I didn't get as good of a harvest as I was hoping. I am definitely using different seed next year. I have chopped down some of the stalks, and plan to tie them in bundles to use as decoration for the fall.



Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Justin's Grocery Month (Written by Justin)

OK Ladies, Here's the moment you've been waiting for... My take on cutting the grocery bill.
If you remember, last month was my month to buy the groceries and see what I could do to save money.
No Coupons...
No ECB's or Register Rewards (I had to ask Danielle what these were)...

First of all I'd like you to keep an open mind and listen closely, I think what we discovered as a family are a few concepts that you may be able to apply as well.

When I told Danielle that I wanted to do this for the month, she said I could as long as I gave her a meal plan and bought the groceries for these meals. Well, I didn't really follow through with that plan, but I believe this was part of my success.

First thing I did was go to Aldi's and buy $77 dollars worth of grub.
-20 some cans of vegetables at $0.49/can
-20 some cans of fruit at $0.79/can
-Several packets of Taco Seasoning
-3 Hamburger Helper boxes at $0.89/box
-Several Macaroni and Cheese Boxes at $0.33/box
-Several boxes of flavored noodles
-Some Yogurt
-A couple bags of chips
-3 boxes of cereal at $1.19/box
-A big can of Oatmeal
-Several Pounds of Hot dogs
-Several other items
-Several cheap pizzas (I think they were $1 ea.)
Items bought on separate trip:
-I bought bread at the outlet store (about 8 loaves) for $0.79/loaf
-There was a deal on milk for $1/gal (bought 8 gallons)

Basically I figured I had enough groceries for at least 2-3 weeks.
I was carefull not to buy stuff like fish sticks and pizza rolls which I noticed were like $2.50 or $3 each and I figured if you ate a vegetable and drank some milk you'd have a $5 or $6 meal.

That's the way I bought the stuff at the store. I figured about what it'd cost for a meal consisting of the items I bought.
Ex. (2) $1 pizza's, a ($0.49) can of green beans and 1/2 of a ($1) gallon of milk.

Then we started recording as closely as possible, the cost of each meal we ate.
We included the cost of our drinks and anything else we may have needed for the meal. If we drank 1/2 gal of kool-aid at supper I added $0.65 or so, figuring we used a cup of sugar and a $0.10 packet of mix.

Our daily avg cost for all 6 of us for 3 meals came out to $3.28 /day.
This would be a monthly total of $98.40.
We used about 8lbs of hamburger(which I didn't add cost for) adding the Hamburger at $2.99/lb would take this to about $125.

Keep in mind we eat leftovers when they're available, so on the days we ate a meal from the day before, our only cost was our drinks and things like bread.

We did make a couple extra trips for a few things here or there, but there are also some things that I bought that are still in the pantry.

How did this work?

Here's the short version because it's getting late:

Don't plan a meal and then go buy the stuff for it. Instead go buy a bunch of stuff that you can use to make meals and then when it's meal time, take a look at what you've got and create a meal from those goods.

Don't plan on eating cheap meals if you're not willing to take some preparation time. I noticed when shopping that the stuff you could make in like 5 minutes was much more expensive than making a box of hamburger helper and some baked potatoes (about a $2 meal).

You can eat really cheap if you want to, so don't complain about your grocery bill!!!
I never talk about how people spend their money, but I also won't listen to people complain about their finances. We all spend our money how we want.

Your kids may complain about eating oatmeal or corn flakes every single day, but if you only have a certain amount of money, you've gotta make choices.
Ask them if they'd rather eat corn flakes and go to the movies on Saturday night, or eat cinnamon toast crunch, and stay at home.

I don't plan on doing this again. I don't really care if we spend $100 or $200 a month on groceries, but this was a good eye opening experience, that I hope you can take something from.


$5 American Doll MOVIES!!

GO here to get 4 different movies for $5 each ...shipping $4.95 even if you get all 4 movies!!!

Thanks Kingdom First Mom and Daily Essentials for the heads up on this DEAL!

Flowers in Bloom..Fall is approaching....

I enjoyed picking a nice pink bouquet of zinnas the other day!!! is hard to see, but it has a beautiful pink color...
I planted some cosmos this year......LOVE them...
I bought two different delphiniums the other day...this dark purple one and then a lavender one as well....
This purple daisy looking mum was gifted to me earlier this summer by a new friend.....Hot pink asters blooming....

Here are two more mums I got the other day.....I haven't decided exactly where to put them...I am sure to find a stop soon!!!

Did you know there is a difference in mums??? What I mean is, if you buy a "hardy mum" it will come back every year....but if you buy a "garden mum" they are more like an annual and only last one season.....So if you like to buy mums to pot up for the fall make sure you get a hardy mum variety and then you can plant it in the ground for next year.....there usually is not a price difference between the two most of the time.......



Monday, September 7, 2009

SALE at Marie Madeline.....

A company that I simply have grown to LOVE it Marie Madeline Studio....they are having a 25% of their entire stock of patterns......LOVE THAT!!! I just order a couple patterns myself....more a on that in a future post though....


Go visit my friends and grab yourself a bargain!! (Just FYI...I don't get anything for this little advertisement,I just wanted to pass along some sale information.)

Hope your having a great holiday weekend!!


Friday, September 4, 2009

A Little Movie Review?

Well I actually had the chance to rent some NEW RELEASES and watch them this past week!!! I thought I would let you in on my may not be worth much...but I thought I would give me my 2cents anyway!

MARLEY & ME rated PG with Jennifer Aniston and Owen Wilson

I watched this with my kiddos since it was rated PG, and I thought the overall story was cute and even touching in some points of the movie... I totally loved that house they moved into in Philadelphia...a brick saltbox style home....ohhhh! I was disappointed that I for being PG there was so much use of profanity (at least a half dozen times) and there were some "harsh words" ( not curse words, but words we don't allow our children to use). In spite of all those things it was a great adult movie and I did have the opportunity to then talk to my kids after the movie and explain some of the language use and what is expected at our home and from our mouths.

DUPLICITY rate PG-13 ( I think) with Julia Roberts (my fav. actress) and Clive Owen
This is definitely an adult only movie in my book more like an R rating for a tiny bit of nudity and sexual suggestion I guess you would call it. Language did not seem to be an issue at all. I LOVED this movie...great action...kept me guessing throughout the whole movie....If you like Ocean 11 style movies, you will love this movie as much as I did!!!

So there you are a couple reviews in case you get the chance to rent some movies in the near future. Maybe this review will help you know what someone else thought of them.



Thursday, September 3, 2009

Lauren Nicole Review/Giveaway!!!

This review is just a bit different than the others I have done....I actually bought this mom's necklace from Lauren Nicole's site! I have had my eye on one of these necklace's for over a month now....and I thought it would make a GREAT 30th B-day present for me! Well my birthday is actually on the 19th, but who doesn't love an early present!!!! Anyway I was so happy when I went to the mailbox and saw my great custom hand made necklace!!!

Denise, owner of Lauren Nicole, offered to do a giveaway for Gaertegang! Isn't that soooo great!!! You rock Denise!!! Here is what she is offering one of you lucky ducky's!!

Fine Silver Small Wax Seal Cross Necklace

Details for entries: Leave a seperate comment for each one!


1. Go to Lauren Nicole and tell me one of your favorite item....Good luck picking so many to choose from!
2. Follow Gaertegang!
3. Subscribe to Gaertegang!
4. Make a button for Gaertegang!!
(Still waiting.... 10 extra entries for this one!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)
5. Twitter about the giveaway!
5. Facebook about the giveaway!
6. Blog about the giveaway! (2 entries for BLOGGIN' it!) Leave me a link!
7. Follow me on Twitter!
8. Enter my SpellQuizzer giveaway as well!

Plenty of ways to gone on get busy!!

Thanks for stopping in and visiting with the Gaertegang...come back soon ya hear!

SpellQuizzer Review/Giveaway!!

I was blessed to WIN a download of SpellQuizzer through another blog giveaway. The software was very easy to download and start using right away...I typed in Lance's (my 3rd grader) first spelling list and then talked into a microphone that I plugged into my computer. I was able to say the word, then use it in a sentence, then say the word again.....then Lance would type the word.....

I loved a couple things about this program...the fact Lance could practice his words in a fun and different way, but also he was learning where the keys were on the keypad. I love when you pull double duty like that!!! Another really great thing about this program is that you can download the software for a FREE 30 day trial.....what a great chance to see if you like the program!!!

Dan, creator of SpellQuizzer, has been sweet enough to offer a FREE download of SpellQuizzer to one blessed person who visits the Gaertegang!!! THANKS DAN!!!!

Deadline for entries is September 18th, 2009 at NOON!
Leave a comment for each entry....

1. Follow Gaertegang...
2. Subscribe to Gaertegang...
3. Follow me on Twitter....
4. What type of school do your children attend? (Public, Private, Home School)
5. Twitter about the giveaway!
6. Facebook about the giveaway!
7. Blog about the giveaway! (2 entries for BLOGGIN' it) Leave me a link!
8. Make a Button for Gaertegang! (10 extra entries for this one!)
9. Enter my Lauren Nicole giveaway as well!!



Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New Recipes for you to try...

My all time favorite thing in the whole world to make is FRUIT SALSA!!!! I don't make it on a regular basis, but I should....I made up a batch tonight and thought I would share the recipe (that was given to me by my friend Cori) I use....

6 kiwi-chunked
6 granny smith apples-chunked
2 quarts strawberries-put in last to get the consistency you want
1 cup of raspberries (I used blueberries instead tonight)
1/3-1/4 cup of sugar
3 tbsp brown sugar-optional
1/2 cup fruit preserve

I run the kiwi, strawberries, apples, and berries (rasp. or blue) through my food processor. Then I combine all the other ingredients in a large bowl and stir them all together.

OHHHHH was it so yummy!! Almost so good I want to hide it from everyone else in the house (cause I am so sweet like that..ahem). I serve them with cinnamon chips. I get those at Meijer (6oz bag is what I found this last time $2.27 a bag...ouch! But it is worth every penny for an indulgence once in awhile!!!! You used to be able to find them at Sam's Club as sister checked for me this week and they said they didn't have them.....I might even had to do a little Internet search and see what I can find...for future occasions....

This week I also made..

Cheesy Chicken Quesadillas

2 cups chopped chicken
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons chopped red onion ( I used minced onion instead)
1 3/4 teaspoons of taco seasoning
1 1/2 chopped cilantro-optional ( I used dried)
4- 6" tortilla shells
1/2 cup salsa-optional ( I used our homemade salsa!)
Mix all ingredients together. Place a tortilla on the baking pan and then spread about 1 cup of the mix in each tortilla shell. Then place another tortilla on top. Bake at 450 for about 8 min. Then remove from the oven and cut into quarters.

HINT: Don't let then get want the shells to still be soft...We served these with sour cream, salsa, and you could add whatever you like with it...So easy and SOOOO yummy!

The third recipe we made this week was...

Hot Dog & Bean Casserole

1 package of hot dogs (16 oz)
3 can of 15.5 oz pork and beans-drained
1/3 cup of BBQ sauce
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
1 box of corn bread mix (8.5 oz) like Jiffy
1/3 cup milk
1 egg

Heat a large non-stick pan and add the hot dogs and cook 3 minutes (nicely browned). Cut them into 1/2 in pieces. In a large bowl mic hot dogs, beans, BBQ sauce, and brown sugar. Spoon in to a sprayed 9X13 pan. Prepare Corn bread as per instructions on the box (using the milk and eggs in the ingredients list above). Pour corn mix over pan evenly. Bake at 350 for about 45 min.

Hope you enjoyed checking out some new recipes!!!



Green Toy Giveaway Winner!

I am almost embarrassed to tell you who won this giveaway....not because something funky is going on but because for some reason this person seems to be winning constantly from Gaertegang!!!! I just to assure everyone that the system I use is totally random....

CARRA you won again!!!! Congrats girlfriend!! The Lord is choosing to bless you abundantly...what a nice place to be!!

Thanks to all who enter...COMING TOMORROW 2 NEW giveaways!!!!




I have really been enjoying Photoscape, a new photo editing software, I downloaded for free...I simply did a search on FREE pic. editing software. In case you have been wanting something similar yourself, I thought I would share!
Here are a couple pics I have messed with a bit....Photoscape have tons of different layouts to pick from....I also did the one you see at the top of my blog!
I took this one last week....Caleb was showing Zach how to write his was so sweet to see them encouraging one another and working together....priceless moments!

In case you were not aware...all four of the kids had the flu last week.....sigh!.....Ahhh you can see the look in his eyes and know how he feels....He was a good sport and let me snap a pic of him.

We feel confident is saying that they all have the cleanest bedding around...We have spent many hours washing bedding and cleaning carpets...ect! So unfortunately this pic of Caleb was our anthem last week! PTL we think we are all on the mend, and pray this will be a much more uneventful week for us!



Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Go here if you would like a FREE one year subscription to Garden Design!!!

Garden Update!

Over the past week, my mom and I have been canning up a storm.....A week ago Sat. we canned up some salsa...last Tues. we did some tomato juice and corn (pic. above), and then this past Sat. we did some more salsa and spaghetti sauce. This week we are planning more corn, salsa, and maybe spaghetti sauce.....depending on when how many tomatoes we have...I don't remember how much salsa we did the first round, but the second round we got 25 Quarts of juice and 15 quart bags of corn, Sat we got 2o something quarts of salsa and 29 quarts of spaghetti sauce!
Hubby is so willing to help if he is able...I'm thinking he like she idea of running the "power tools"....what cha' think? Plus you know he just couldn't wait for me to document his help in "the blog" with a photo op! (Hmm maybe not so much!)

I hope you are being blessed with plenty in your gardens as well!



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