Thursday, December 13, 2012

Graduation Day

 My oldest daughter graduated from college last weekend. It was an awesome event. It was so much fun having all my children together to celebrate MaryCam. We took a million pictures with Iphones and cameras constantly instagramming the occasion. Honestly, there are so many of us, if you didn't know us you would have thought that we were the paparazzi and MaryCam was a movie star! It was a such a fun time!

I had already thought through whether or not it would be an emotional day for me, and I logically decided it was not. Why would I cry on such a joyful occasion? It was such a fabulous moment. It was big! It was an incredible milestone marking a pretty amazing four year adventure. I decided I was more thrilled for her

[caption id="attachment_1679" align="alignleft" width="300"] Taylor and MaryCam[/caption]

and her accomplishment than I was emotional for me. Then we got out of the car to go to the arena and the first person we saw was one of MaryCam's best friends and room mate from freshman year, Taylor. I lost it! I love Taylor like one of my own children and seeing her wrap her arms around MaryCam woke vivid memories of their move in day at Auburn. Moving those girls in was the most fun day as well as the most difficult day. We laughed a lot and cried a lot that day! The daddys were sweating and trying not to be frustrated with us snapping photos every minute while they were laying carpet, moving shelves, and carrying a gazillion rubber maid totes up three flights of stairs. What a day! Four years later MaryCam and Taylor still make me laugh and cry all at the same time!

 The ceremony was wonderful! As I watched my baby walk down the isle to receive her diploma, I walked down memory lane. In about five minutes, I relived a million of my favorite memories. The first day of kindergarden, MaryCam singing Mary Did You Know, puppies, barbies, concerts on the porch, playing in the sprinkler, tennis matches... My heart overflows with treasures that I have collected from over the years. What are you collecting? I hope every day you are collecting sweet moments and priceless conversations, especially this time of year while children are out of school Throw away that "to do" list and make cookies or try a new recipe. Sit in a tree stand with your boys. Make gifts, ornaments, or work a 1000 piece puzzle. You know it's not about the activity, it's all about being together and really good conversation. Activity just makes conversations easier. At the end of the day ,there are no words to describe how thankful I am that I tossed the list and enjoyed every day at home.  It is such a short season that we have our children at home. Eat up every minute. Put the laundry down and watch a movie. Laugh out loud! Have ice cream for dinner! Plan a family night with pizza and games.  Ride bikes, go for coffee, color, just hang out! Don't waste another day. Wrap your arms around your baby, no matter their age and tell them that you love them! It goes by so fast! Make every minute amazing! Spending time with your family is the greatest investment you will ever make! Thank you for stopping by!                               love love love  Ruthie

Friday, December 7, 2012

Diva Day

     Can you believe I titled my blog "Diva Day?" For those of you that follow my blog know I'm the furthest thing from a "Diva", but I just thought it sounded good! Anyway, I did have a  girls day out yesterday! The most fun afternoon ever! I texted my friend Lyn (I did a post on her a while back on bread making ) and told her I wanted to do a Christmas coffee craft thing. Honestly, I called Lyn because I'm not a detail girl,she is a detail girl, I am idea girl. Within minutes, she texted back with what day, what time, who is coming, and what are we making. I wasn't sure I was quite ready for all that, I think I thought I was still in the "idea stage." However, after a few texts, we had a date, time, friends, food, coffee, and craft planned. It was really impressive! I tossed around different ideas in my head for a week or two of what we could make. I absolutely love thinking about those things. Then Lyn called a few days before the coffee and said she had been making wreaths did I want her to do a fun tutorial on how to make a wreath to decorate your home. I would NEVER turn down a tutorial from Lyn. So I emailed the girls and asked them to bring greenery from their yards and I would have the rest. Yesterday morning, the weather was absolutely fabulous so Towns and I cleaned up the porch and set out all the supplies. I took photos so you could learn how to make your own wreath too! Enjoy!


This is my sweet friend Teri. If you notice we used wreaths from Hobby Lobby made out of straw or grass. I'm sure you can find them at most craft stores.

The first thing we did was cover the back of the wreath by wrapping it with magnolia leaves and pinning the leaf with "U" shaped pins.

Towns did a great job on hers! This is what the back looks like once it's been completely covered with leaves. The reason you cover the back is because if you hang it on a window or door with a window you are not going to want to see a straw wreath. Instead you'll be looking at a yummy green color.

This is my sweet friend Patti. I meant to tell you when you wrap the magnolia leaf, you put a   pin in the top and bottom of the leaf. You can see that pretty well on Patti's wreath.

My sweet friend Kelly is obviously slacking. At least she smiles while she slacks. I'm kidding, we just got started and I just wanted to use this pic because I think it's great!

After wrapping the back of the wreath, next we covered the front with magnolia leaves. We took a bunch of three leaves and pinned them down at the stems. Once you've made your way all the way around the wreath it's time to get creative.

Isn't Lyn's wreath beautiful? This really is the most fun part. We put all our finds in the middle of the table and layered layered layered. Lyn used cedar branches, holly branches, boxwoods, pine, pods, pinecones, and a few other things. Use the pins to attach all the greenery. Make sure you cover the wreath completely. How fabulous is that? It is easy and beautiful and costs only the amount of the wreath form and pins.

I loved Kelly's wreath with all the magnolia and pine and beautiful red berries and pine. Really the possibilities are endless. Use whatever you have in your yard. Be creative and be brave.

This was the most fun day! In the end, the wreaths turned out beautifully, but it was the company of sweet friends and conversations of creative souls that filled my heart so completely. There is nothing quite like the exchange of ideas and creative challenges to set your mind in motion. It was so fun. Yesterday was such a fabulous time! Being with these creative girls nourishes my soul. It's so important that you spend time with people that think like you do, that love to create and challenge you to be a better artist. I love these precious girls, and I am so thankful for how we laugh and love and always create! I love love love it! Thank you for stopping by! love love love Ruthie

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

MaryCam's Banner

I am so glad you stopped by! Yesterday I was headed to the post office and I realized I didn't remember getting from point A to point B. I wasn't on the phone, I wasn't singing to the radio, I was deep in thought creating things. Honestly, I can't get to sleep at night and I'm up way too early because my brain clicks about 100 miles an hour. It's not with a normal to do list of things I could write down and clear my head. It's a thousand projects I create all day in my head. I can see the most insignificant thing and it spark an idea that sparks another idea that sparks another idea.... you get the picture. Anyway, MaryCam started her first "big girl" job Tuesday and I wanted to do something special for her. Probably most people would do a fabulous dinner out to celebrate or maybe meet for lunch, but not me, I had to make something. I decided to decorate the kitchen and have fabulous dinner at home with some yummy dessert. The cooking was easy it was the decorations that I enjoyed the most. I decided to make her a banner that she could keep and use again. While I was making this in my head, I decided to take a few photos so you could make one too! It was super easy, great looking, and of course so much fun! I hope you enjoy!

The first thing I did was to go through all my scraps of fabric. You need very little fabric to complete this project so scraps are perfect! I picked seven different fabrics in the pink and green family.

I chose seven fabric pieces because I wanted a triangle for each letter of MaryCam's name. Then I eyeballed a nice size triangle. No measuring, just eyeballed it.

I probably should have opened up the triangle to show you that I cut it on the fold. I hope you can see that the top of my triangle is on the fold so I only cut down the sides. I only had to make two cuts. In other words, double your fabric and cut the triangle on the fold putting the top of the triangle on the fold.

Once you've cut one triangle, rather than "eyeballing " them all, use the first one as your pattern to cut as many triangles as you need. That way you are sure to have them all the same size. But now as i'm typing this I'm thinking different sizes could be cool looking. Nonetheless, mine are basically all the same size.

I starched and Ironed all seven shapes mainly because the fabric had been waded up in a cabinet. However it does make it a little stiffer so it's easier to sew. I recommend ironing. It doesn't take but two seconds and you'll be glad you did!

I sewed all three sides about a presser foot width. This is important, when you sew the top next to the fold, leave an opening on the right and left so the string for your banner can go through it. Get it? So basically you created a little tube or pocket on the top of the triangle for the string to pass through and hold the banner up. I thought about those of you who don't have a sewing machine and I feel sure you could use a fabric glue or even staples to do the same thing.

I took this pic to show you my stitch lines. Can you even see them?

Arrange the triangles the way you want them to hang. This is kind of important to me. I did a pink then green then pink then green... If you like the way they are arranged before you hang them then you won't have to take them down and rearrange. Just put them in an order that you like before you hang them up!

I used a twine to string my banner. I tied my string to a safety pin and used the pin to help thread the string through the pocket you created at the top of the banner. Once I strung each triangle I got some old burlap and cut a few strips and tied in between each triangle. I loved the way it looked.

I have to say it looks so darling without letters on it, however I couldn't stand it. I was having so much fun that I pulled out my cricut and cut MaryCam's name out in hot pink vinyl. You could leave it plain, or paint letters or stencil letters or buy alphabet stickers at the craft store. Possibilities are endless.

It turned out so adorable. Honestly it only took me about 45 minutes. I love it and I would do it exactly the same way again! I hope you try it and send me a pic. If you have any questions email or comment! I'm dying to know what you think!!!!

Thanks for stopping by! Happy Crafting! love love love Ruthie

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Who is Your Neighbor?

[caption id="attachment_1632" align="alignleft" width="300"]         Joy to the World
6x6 Collage Acrylic Overlay[/caption]

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! I love it! And I'm so glad you stopped by! Do you just love everything about this time of year? I do! I do! I do! I love the lights, the music, the cheesy movies...I love it all! There's just a feeling you have in your heart the whole month of December. Do you know what I mean? I bake more, I write more notes, I smile more, I wave at people I don't know....I can't really explain it, but I love it! Yesterday the twins and I met for ice cream after school, and I spoke to everyone in the place before I sat down to eat. I just feel like every day my heart is so full, and it overflows all day where ever I go. I love that!

Sunday our preacher, Mr Mac, read the story of the good Samaritan from the bible. (Luke 10:25-37) He asked the question, "Who is your neighbor?" Scripture teaches that the first and greatest commandment is to love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind, and the second is to love your neighbor as yourself. The obvious answer to Mr. Mac's question would be your spouse, your family and your friends. However, the convicting and compelling story of the good Samaritan reminds me that my "neighbor"is also that person whom I do not know and isn't at all like me. Not only that, but I am to love them as I love myself. Wow! When I think about how I love myself with just every day basic needs like food, clothing, and exercise. I even splurge on luxuries like treating myself to lunch or a new pair of shoes. I take good care of myself... and I am to love my "neighbor" with that same love and respect.  To me, loving my neighbor is an attitude of the heart. I don't believe we are born with that attitude. I believe we are born with a sinful and selfish heart, however with God's help I believe we can train our minds and our hearts to put others before ourselves and truly love them unselfishly. Love is not something you buy,but rather something you have that your share or give. It 's giving your time, or being kind, or a wave, a smile, a conversation, a listening ear, an encouraging word. It's all those things and more. To me it's being a reflection of Jesus. It's allowing Him to fill you up so that He can spill out on every one you meet! I LOVE that! So the next time you treat yourself to an hour in the gym or a cookie at the mall. remember to love your neighbor as yourself!

Love love love Ruthie                      I am making banners on my blog tomorrow so check it out!

Friday, November 30, 2012

November Giveaway!!!!!!

 Do you just love a giveaway? I do to! I'm that person that might buy an unattractive tube of lipstick just to get the promotional giveaway. I rarely win stuff, but it is not for lack of trying! My family loves to tell stories on me of trying to win things through crazy contests! In fact, I was listening to a radio show some years back and they were giving away a free breakfast to Chappy's Deli if you could recite the preamble. I called immediately and said I can't recite it, but I can sing it! Oh yes I did and won a free breakfast! Those were the best eggs ever! So a giveaway? I am all over it!

First may I say thank you to all of you for reading my blog! Honestly, the fact that you take time out of your day to be with me makes me feel like I win a giveaway every day! So thank you! Thank you to those of you who take time to leave a comment. I love love love knowing what you think! I learn so much from you! Thank you! I love y'all!

Ok, enough of me rambling on! I so enjoyed blogging thankful things this month! It really made me so much more aware of everything around me! I found my heart was so full all day and overwhelmed with God's sweet blessings on me. I hope my blog made you see your days differently and maybe invited you into God's presence for just a little while. He truly is the giver of gifts! He gave His only son so that He could give you the free gift of eternal life! I love a free gift!!! His gift is wrapped in love that fills and satisfies like no other. I am thankful for life in Jesus! I am thankful for you, and it is my joy to give away a gift today!

The winner is........... Steve Lee! I'm so excited! I will see you sunday! with your gift! Thank you for your love for the Lord and for your family! Your life is such a sweet reflection of Him! love love love Ruthie


Thursday, November 29, 2012

Peppermint Mocha

 I am so glad you stopped by! Today I am thankful for a Peppermint Mocha from Starbucks. When my twins get out of school and are headed home, they usually give my a quick call or text to let me know they are on the way. Yesterday was no exception, only when I asked how their day was the response was "It was ok." From the tone in their voice and lack of enthusiasm in their response I knew it was time for an intervention. So I dropped what I was doing and asked them to meet me at Starbucks that this was a Peppermint Mocha kind of day. It's amazing what a cup of fun coffee can do. It lifted spirits, it opened the door for great conversation, and it turned an "ok" day into something wonderful!

I think it's important that we are intentional about spending time with our children. The other day a precious mama of three posted a question on facebook asking for Christmas present ideas for her elementary aged child. By the time I read it she had received about twenty or so responses and would you believe every gift idea posted except for about five were tech gifts. (Ipads, Ipods, laptops etc...) I recently had a sweet mama ask me how to set boundaries for her children and their technical toys. One mom told me she loved traveling with her children because they all played video games on their ipads and she could enjoy the peace and quiet. I had another mom say that the minute her child gets home from school she is on her ipad or laptop and she never sees her anymore. My husband even says he would love to throw the Iphones out the window because they are so distracting. The thing is, children, no matter what their age, would rather be with you than on their Ipads or Iphones. We will all be in the den and the twins will be checking instagram and my husband just complains about the fact that everybody's on the phone. However, when he is intentional about talking to them or telling a story about his day, the phones automatically go down and all eyes are on him. Interesting isn't it? God made us a relational people. So be relational!

I love to be intentional with my family. Being intentional provides fabulous opportunities for great conversations. It creates the perfect atmosphere for fun and laughter as well as teaching moments. Being intentional doesn't have to cost money, it just takes time. The other day when the twins got home from school we made salt clay and made all kinds of cool things. Every tuesday we go to the bookstore and sit and talk and look at books. Occasionally we meet for coffee at Starbucks. Sometimes we bake and eat and talk. We jog together and talk. When they were little and at home all day, I rarely had friends over because I loved laying on the floor and working puzzles and talking. We would make forts and dress up and color and read and all those fun things. I was very selfish with my time with them when they were small. It took time. It took energy and effort. The laundry didn't always get done and my house was always in a little bit of disarray, but it was worth it! I wouldn't trade those sweet conversations for anything in this world. The time we have with our children in our home is such a short season. The luncheons can wait. The meetings will always be there. Be intentional with your children today. Teach them a new card game. Play memory with the whole deck! Make a necklace out of food in your pantry and eat it! Bake something! Color something. Then instagram it for all to see!

Today I am thankful for peppermint mocha with the twins. I love making an "ok" day the best day ever! Be intentional with your children today. Leave me a comment on how you were    love love love Ruthie

Last day to leave a comment and be automatically entered for my giveaway tomorrow!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


[caption id="attachment_1622" align="alignleft" width="300"]               The Lord is my Shepherd
            Acrylic on heart pine board[/caption]

I am so glad you stopped by! Today I am thankful for rest. I woke this morning to a cold, gloomy, rainy day. It was so nice. For those of you who follow my blog regularly know that I love sunshine and hot weather, however, every now and then I love a cold and rainy day. It was the perfect excuse to stay home and snuggle up with a blanket, a cup of coffee, and a great book. I did not snuggle into a blanket with a book today, but I did stay home all day and catch up on laundry in between cups of coffee and projects in my studio. It was lazy and yummy. I loved every minute! I think as women sometimes we feel guilty when we don't complete a "to do" list of 40 things every day. We rarely give ourselves the freedom to sit and enjoy a cup of coffee or a rainy afternoon. This morning I sat in my chair with a cup of coffee with the porch door open and just listened to the rain. It was incredible! When was the last time you just sat and listened to the rain? When was the last time you turned off your phone, really disconnected from the world, and rested? Rest is a good thing. Rest is different for every person. How do you rest?

Rest for me is when I take time off from my every day routine. I love a change of scenery. I love a break from the rat race. It doesn't mean that I have to take a vacation or even leave home. Sometimes rest for me is just taking a couple of hours to paint or create. Sometimes it means running a long distance all by myself. Occasionally it's catching up on laundry or housework so I can enjoy just sitting and being still. I love in Psalm 23 when it says "The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want. He leads me beside the still waters. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He restores my soul." That is real rest! God is my Shepherd. He takes care of me completely. He leads me. He leads me to still water. There is nothing more peaceful or restful than water. He makes me lie down. I love that. He restores my soul. That is so fine. Can you just feel that? He restores your soul. I love that! I live for that! No one, no friend, no spouse, no food, no exercise, no nothing can promise that! Only God can restore your soul. Ahhhhh! Real rest. Real peace! Real joy! Today I am thankful for rest. Seek Him first. Find rest in Him. Allow the Shepherd to restore your soul! Rest is good. He is good!                     love love love Ruthie

Leave me a comment how you find rest and automatically be entered for my giveaway on Nov.30.


Monday, November 26, 2012

The Christmas Parade!

 I'm so glad you stopped by! I could hardly wait to post this blog. Today I'm thankful for the Seaside Christmas parade! I love a parade! When I was little my neighborhood put on a parade every labor day. How fun is that? If I ever see anyone from my old neighborhood the annual labor day parade always makes it's way into the conversation! It was the most fun day ever. All the kids in the neighborhood would dress up in homemade costumes and march around the block while parents cheered and waved. I remember one year I made a huge poster with a Baby Ruth candy bar on it and wore it as my costume. My sister and her friend dressed as the toothfairy and a girl in her pajamas who lost her tooth. There was a brother and sister who dressed as each other. It was simple and perfect! The Seaside Christmas parade reminds me of that day just a little bit. The street is lined with tons of children and adults eagerly awaiting the arrival of homemade Christmas decorations and music. Families decorate golf carts and even baby strollers with garland and everything red and green and throw beads and candy all along 30a. There is a local children's shop that recruits children to ride on their truck. The children dress like elves and throw mints and sometimes stop and do a quick dance to a popular Christmas song. This year there was a precious group of girls from a local dance studio who dressed up as candy cane girls and did a little dance for everybody all along the parade route. One little girl rode her unicycle the entire way and even threw candy at the same time. She was amazing.Then you know that Christmas has arrived when Santa and Mrs. Claus wrap up the parade waving to the crowd from their car drawn sleigh! It was the perfect day! I love a parade.

What lets you know Christmas is here? Is it the decorations or the lights in the neighborhoods? Maybe it's the millions of commercials reminding you how many shopping days you have left? Is it the Christmas movies on every channel that always have a happy ending? Maybe it's the many times you wake in the night remembering all the little things you don't want to forget? I'm feeling stress just thinking of those things. Christmas is what you make it! Try something new. Choose to sip a cup of hot chocolate and have a good conversation. Ride around on a week night with someone special and look at lights. Bake cookies with friends and give them away. Try a new recipe and surprise someone with something yummy. Have friends over and make an ornament or a Christmas card. If you're really adventurous, organize a Christmas parade in your neighborhood and end up at someone's house for hot chocolate! (Maybe I'll do that) In other words, slow down and enjoy this Christmas season. Be thankful for parades!             Love love love Ruthie

Saturday, November 24, 2012

The Light of the World

Last night our family went to Rosemary Beach to watch them light up the huge Christmas tree in the center of town. We have never been and I have always wanted to go. So yesterday morning before the boys left to go fishing and the girls left to go shopping, I asked if everyone could be home by 5:00 and ready to go at 5:30 to see the lights. The boys were a bit of a hard sell because it was their last day to fish, but everyone agreed to be home. I could hardly wait for the lights!

We headed to Rosemary right at 5:30. I really didn't know what to expect but I had my heart set on going and my camera on my shoulder. We parked about a block away and walked. You would not have believed the people! They were everywhere! It was wild! All the families and children and even pets were so fun to watch! They were playing Christmas music and and all the shops had open house, it was just festive and fun. We had the perfect view from where we stood! We stood back from the tree on the ledge of a fountain just above the crowd. I tried to take pictures with my phone, but it was too dark and then this one light came on and a woman stepped up to a microphone. There was a hush over the crowd as she began to speak. She welcomed everybody and then introduced a talented group of singers who sang Silver Bells without music. It was beautiful. Then a horse drawn sleigh made its way through the crowd carrying you know who... Santa. I wish you could have heard the children screaming and clapping. My children, of course, were making me laugh hysterically as they were quoting the movie Elf! "Santa!!!! I know him!!!" Anyway, it was so much fun! Santa made his way to the stage and gave the count down to turn on the town! Five! Four! Three! Two! One! Wow!!!!! The biggest tree I've ever seen came to life with every color light you can imagine! Then the crowd began to sing "Deck the Halls," and every tree in the center of town came to life with white light. It was spectacular! The lights were so bright it was like daytime! I loved it! I loved being there! My sweet husband even thanked me for getting everybody there! It was great! After the lights were on, families stood in the green under the lights while the children played and people took a million pictures! It was a sight to see! If that doesn't put you in the Christmas spirit nothing will! It was truly beautiful!

After the "photo op", we were ready to go. Right before we got to the car, I turned around to get one last look. Even from a block away the lights were brighter than ever. Standing in the darkness of the parking lot so far away, somehow the lights were more beautiful! I guess it was because I could see them all at once and how they truly brought the entire town to life. It was moving. I so wish you could have been there!

As Christmas time grows closer I think about our country. You don't have to look any further than the television or newspaper or magazines to see that so many people have lost  their way. I so desire my life to be like the trees in Rosemary. When they turned those lights on it illuminated the darkness completely. It turned night into day and allowed everybody to see clearly. I want to be light in a dark world. I want to remind people that there is hope. I want others to see Jesus in me. It's so easy to get caught up in the busy of Christmas and forget to love those around us. This Christmas let your light shine!                                       love love love Ruthie

Let your light shine before others, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven. Matthew 5:18

Don't forget to leave a comment and automatically be entered for my giveaway Nov.30!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving Day

[caption id="attachment_1593" align="alignleft" width="300"] Happy Thanksgiving[/caption]

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm so glad you dropped by! I am thankful for you! I love this holiday! You're probably thinking I love every holiday. It's true. However, this holiday is different from the rest. There are no gifts or decorations or even thanksgiving music on the radio. In fact, the only advertisement the media could come up with is the "after thanksgiving sale!" It's the most traveled week of the year and it gets no publicity except for food and sales. I do love thanksgiving. It's a time filled with friends and family and reflection. I love thinking about everyone sitting around the table together laughing and telling old stories and maybe sharing what they are thankful for today. Even if you don't say it out loud, it's a day that your heart is just so full  you can hardly contain it!

Today I will spend the day with my family overwhelmed all day with God's grace and sweet blessings on me and my family. My greatest joy is that my husband and my children have a personal relationship with Jesus. Today I am so humbled and so thankful that God would send His only son into the world to live and die so that I and my family and who every believes might have eternal life. Pure Joy! I am thankful.

I hope your day is amazing and filled with the joy of Jesus! Love love love Ruthie

For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son. That whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life! John 3:16

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Supper Time

The other day I saw a commercial on TV advertising a sitcom. The commercial showed a husband and wife eating supper on the sofa watching television and the TV goes out, and they look at each other in horror. It really was funny, but kind of sad if you think about it too long. There is nothing better than supper at the table. Even when my children were in high chairs I would pull their chair to the table to make them feel part of the family. Once they were toddlers and could sit in a chair or booster seat, we trained them to sit at the dinner table with the family. Even if dinner was a little late some nights, we would have a little snack and wait for out daddy to get home so we could eat together at the table. Children are not born with table manners and patience to sit at the table, it has to be taught. It is not hard to train, it just takes a little time. I can't tell you how many times I've been to a restaurant and seen a daddy take a toddler out to play on the sidewalk while the mom eats dinner. Then the mom goes out with the child while the daddy comes in and woofs his dinner in 5 minutes flat. (And they paid for that?) Training your children at home to sit at the table makes dinner out a delight not a race! Teach them to sit and enjoy company and conversation. They don't have to sit for hours, just enough time for everyone to finish their meal in a reasonable amount of time. Once they've learned to sit at home then take them out to dinner. I always carried a bag of paper and crayons with me so if they finished quickly they could color but still be a part of the conversation. (We gave more pictures to waiters and cashiers than you can imagine.) Supper at the table is also a valuable time for Eddie. It is the time when he gets caught up on everyone's day. Even when they were young he would hear them talk about books they'd read or friends they played with that day. With a big family, my biggest obstacle was teaching everybody not to talk  at once. We had to teach our children to listen and to ask questions and to be interested in other conversations. Obviously the supper table is an amazing teaching opportunity for everybody!  Last night we sat for awhile around the table laughing and talking about the day. It just reminded me how much I enjoy supper time. Schedules change as children get older, but they still have to eat. Turn off the TV! Make supper time a priority! Make it fun. Use that time to learn about your children and share things about yourself. Not every night will be meaningful conversation, but it will be memorable! Lastly, once everyone is seated, allow your husband to lead and open the meal with a prayer of thanksgiving. Remind your children that everything we have is from God Almighty, and that they are blessed to be sitting at the table with family and good food. Men, don't ask your wife or children to pray. Step up and set the example of a humble and thankful heart for your family to imitate. Mamas, if you are single, pray with your children and allow them to see Jesus in you. If you live alone and eat by yourself, stop before you eat and thank God for being your Father and provider. I am so thankful for supper time. Whether I am with friends or family, there is nothing finer than supper around the table! Enjoy supper tonight!                                           Love love love Ruthie

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Christmas lights (November Challenge)

Today I am thankful for Christmas lights! I wondered when I would share this post because I love Christmas lights all year long! What is it about twinkling lights that sends me over the moon? In the movie "Mama Mia" my favorite scene is towards the end when Pierce Brosnan sings to Meryl Streep under that huge tree because the tree is covered in lights! My favorite thing about cooking out every saturday night is that I have Christmas lights strung on my back porch all year! Yesterday I was jogging with the twins and lights were  everywhere and decorations are going up all over the place. I love the colors and all the bling! It just makes my heart so happy. When my children were little, we collected big huge plastic statues that lit up! It was so fun and bright and loud! Parting with the light up snoopy was difficult, but now that my children are older I still light everything up just not with plastic! I visit home depot every year and replenish my stash of lights! I string lights everywhere! It makes everything more festive and fun! So replenish those lights and string them everywhere...and leave a few up all year! I am thankful for the lights!                         love love love Ruthie

(Don't forget to leave a comment and be entered for my giveaway on Nov. 30)

Monday, November 19, 2012

Holiday Parking

 Holidays are my most favorite thing, but holiday parking is even better. Holiday parking means everyone is home and no school, no homework, no work, just fun! It really is the funniest thing. With five children driving we had to come up with a place for everyone to park when they were all home! Some spots are a little better than's like who gets to ride up front when they were little. At the end of the day, because the twins live at home, they usually get the closest spot. Luke usually gets the one furthest away because he drives a huge truck and his hours are crazy with hunting. The funniest thing is when someone comes home unexpected or early and can't  get into a spot and the back door opens and the first thing said is "Hey it's holiday parking!" I know it sounds silly, but I love the words "holiday parking!" It is one of those inside family jokes that will live forever. Eddie and I were coming in one night and all the cars were tucked in for the night and Eddie said, "I love holiday parking!" I love it! I love having everyone home. I love the hustle and bustle around the house. I love all the friends coming over and all the schedules and plans.  I love when everyone gets up in the morning and laughs and tells stories over coffee and orange juice. Holiday parking is my favorite.

I hope your week is fabulous and filled with holiday parking. Enjoy the time off and relax. Don't plan too much. Eat up every moment of every day loving whatever it brings. Holiday parking brings lots of activity and surprises, enjoy it! Clean up later! Shop later! Do the christmas card later! Sit down and enjoy!  Have fun! Laugh! Watch all the cheesy Christmas movies with hot chocolate and fun snacks. Love holiday parking! Happy Happy Monday! Thank you for stopping by!                                                Love love love Ruthie