Friday, February 25, 2011

If I must ...

Whatta week! Business reigns supreme in the Steedly house this week, as mama is getting ready for her annual Ladies Retreat with her "girls". As a planner, this is one of my favorite times of year and this weekend we get to see all our hard work come to fruition!

This, of course, is also the weekend that I need to wrap up my Thirty One catalog party for Kimmie!

I am SO excited to see this new spring catalog ..SO many new prints and new bags that I just drool over!

My favorites are the Spiral and Dot with hot pink lettering ..SOOO cute.

I am also way excited about their new boy prints...because there are lots of boys around here! :)

If you are interested in placing an order with Thirty One, I would LOVE for you to pop over to my online party HERE ...also, keep in mind we are trying to help this MOM BASED BUSINESS hit a new milestone this month. OKAY, if I HAVE to get new awesome bags in order to support you Kimmie..I will make the sacrifice :)

Thirty One is also having a great sale this month - for every $31 you spend, you get another item for 31% off!  This is a good deal, when using it for an AWESOME car bucket (large utility tote!..LOVE IT!) can get it for $20.70 after the discount!

Anyways..I have said my piece about THAT! ..need ideas? Girls, I got the goods..just let me know! :)

Friday, February 18, 2011

Congrats Krystal!

 We are so excited to announce that Krystal won our Signs by Andrea giveaway!

She is way excited about her $45 credit to get to design her own beautiful art piece for her home!

No worries if you are NOT Krystal and you are sad you didnt take home this great giveaway BUT ...dont forget that Andrea is offering LPLS readers a GREAT deal until the 1st of March!

She is taking $10 off an order for all our readers ...just add "MOMBIZ10" to the comment line when you order at Signs by Andrea.

When you do, PLEASE come back and tell us what you ordered ...she does so many great things I love to see all teh different stuff this one she posted on her Facebook page yesterday ..LOVE IT!

Now, it works out perfectly (not TOO perfectly, I promise I didnt do it on purpose!) but Krystal will be the focus of our NEXT Mom-Based Business!

She is the owner of  Henry and Stella Designs. This is a new business I have recently been introduced to and I am a faithful customer already!  Krystal designs and creates beautiful pieces of jewelry - one of which, I am the proud owner :)

I want wait to share her work with you next week the meantime, feel free to go look around and get familiar with her stuff. You will love it!

Congrats Krystal..and thanks Andrea!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Reminder ..Signs by Andrea!

{Just wanted to remind you to enter to win $45 towards a wonderful Sign by Andrea!}

I love the family names, monograms and so on..but when you go to Signs By Andrea you can see where she does more than just names! I love her sayings, phrases and sweet reminders :)

To enter,  go to Signs by Andrea, look around and come back here and tell us what you would order if you won the $45 credit!

For a second entry, go "like" Signs by Andrea on Facebook! ..dont forget to come back and let us know that you did!

Dont forget that even if you dont win, LPLS readers get $10 off until March 1st (see sidebar for details)!

Good luck everyone!  ..if you would to see more detailed post about this Mom Based Business go here!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Quiet Your Soul

It has been a week full of the flu, worries, anxieties, lack of production and a bit of domestic chaos in the Steedly house :)  Quiet time has, admittedly, not been either a priority or even feasible most days.

Today, I wanted to get reacquainted and refocused ...because the week has left SO many things that need to be done, so many things put off, so many messes to clean up and disorder to order, I didnt know where to start and my mind was feeling muddled.

I am always amazed with how God blesses us when we look to him for that refocus. I dont say that in a prideful way ..but a reminder for myself that when I feeling the most out of sorts, he ALWAYS comes through...why dont I always just go to him in the first place, rather than my lists, my planner, my calendar, my processes?

This morning I found this ...and it brought tears to my eyes because of its relevancy to my life right now ...

"But I have stilled and quieted my soul; like a weaned child with its mother,
like a weaned child is my soul within me."  Psalms 131:2

 I have weaned two babies, and beginning with another one now and I relate to the difference in a child who is looking to his mother for food at every chance he can get it, and one who is content simply being with her with no expectations of that (not NO expectations..we arent quite there yet :)
I love that idea of simply resting in God's bosom, not in a hurried demand for more or looking for what is coming next but just being "stilled and quieted" in my soul. 
My prayer for you and I today is that we will seek to "still and quiet" our souls at His breast ..just be, just rest, just allow His peace to wash over you matter what needs you bring to his lap this day.

Welcome ifellowship friends ..please check out our mom based business of the week,
Signs By Andrea and her great giveaway!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

{peaceful sigh}

A friend shared this today and it had to be shared:)

Tips On Tuesday: Parent Controlled Substances

I took this phrase from a mom of five several years ago. She called any toy or activity that needed supervision a "Parent Controlled Substance" ..I liked it :)

We have a system for PCS in our house, and it helps us keep up little pieces and such. A  Parent Controlled Substances are anything that requires mom's permission/assistance to get out, and/or supervision to play with.

Some PCS goes up out of reach, some just gets the designation of needing permission first.  This lets me know that that toy it is out and needs attention to be collected, picked up, cleaned up before/during or after it is played with.

First, the things that fit into this category for us are the things that have small pieces ..ones that are lost easily, easily choked on, or there are just alot of them. Games, puzzles and construction sets (Legos)  fit into this category

Then, things that are super messy ..things that require a special place to play or some effort to clean up. For us, that means paint, playdoh, and the most awful substance ever created for kids ...Moon Sand (clearly, a person responsible for children did NOT create that stuff).

Finally, things that when left to kid-control are constantly out and all over the place. I think all our kids have those toys that they play with over and over again - they get it all out and it stays there. We have several categories of things ..dress up stuff and alphabet blocks are our worst ones. They CANNOT play with these things without spreading them ALL over the house.   These things may earn the designation of becoming ...dun dun duh! ..PCS.

One of my favorite benefits of this designation is that I know when we are missing pieces, and that toy stays up and put away until we find them all. When we find that piece (and honestly, it may take awhile, but we usually do) then I know exactly where the rest of the game is and all I have to do is complete the set.  Right now our alphabet blocks are on lock down - we are missing 7 pieces from the set and will be found and recovered before being played with again.

I have to admit a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction when I add that last block to set knowing that it is finally complete ...only to be added back into play to be lost again :)

Another benefit, is raising the importance of taking care of our things. In our disposable society, these kiddos need to learn that we have take care of what we have, so we can have it for a long time and not just throw away the toys because pieces are missing or whatever (not that I dont get rid of stuff that has pieces missing me).

Anyway - it Works for Me ..maybe it will for you as well?!  ..what things are PCS in your house?!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Mom-Based Business: Signs By Andrea

I am excited to share with you a Mom-Based Business, owned by a mom who I have known for a few years.  I have been a customer of hers, and I can say I was very happy with my purchases!

{Meet Andrea and her business..Signs by Andrea}

Andrea shared a little about herself ...I'm a a WAHM with two preschoolers and a serious need to create - scrapbooking, photography, decorating or otherwise...just as long as I can make something "cute".  What started as a fun little handmade bridal shower gift has turned into a nice little money-maker (and sanity saver).  It's what I call "Signs by Andrea" - custom designed, made-just-for-you, hand painted signs, from my house to yours.

Andrea is giving away a free sign - up to $45 value!  Check out Andrea's web site & sign galleries and comment here telling me which design you'd pick if you win.
For an extra entry - "like" Signs by Andrea on Facebook and make a separate comment here letting me know.

Even if you don't win a free sign, you can still enjoy a great discount!  She's offering $10 off her regular prices for all our readers.  Just add MOMBIZ10 to the comments section of your order to get the discount.  This deal expires March 1st, 2011 so take advantage right away!

Check back this week ..we cant WAIT to hear what you pick out ..and who knows, maybe you will get some good ideas as well! :) this one... :) I love everyone's names overlaying the family name!

Thanks Andrea!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Sacrificing the Body

I think it is interesting how often our bodies are related to our holiness and our relationship with God, both in the Old Testament and the New Testament.  In the OT, the Israelites are called to purify their bodies, refrain from certain foods, cleanse, groom, segregate disease ...their bodies were an act of worship to God and the way they used their bodies showed a level of devotion to His law.

So too in the New Testament ..."dear friends let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates the body and the spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God." 2 Cor 7:1

..what we do with our bodies, reflects our efforts toward holiness.  I think I have always assumed that fit under the "dont drink, smoke or have sex before you are married"  category of do's and dont's.

Lately, though, I have been considering more about how my body is such valuable resource to God, and is so thoroughly used by the Holy Spirit every minute of the day.  I have considered more about how my care for it is an example of my offering "your body as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God ...this is your spiritual act of worship!"  Romans 12:1

Wow. I feel challenged by this idea that I need to focus on my body a bit more ...working on "perfecting my holiness", by caring for what God has given me. 

Just like we so desire to control our stress levels and are motivated by a greater purpose than just to be "less stressed" (rather, to be of greater use for the purposes to which God called us, using our resources more effectively so we are more perfect tools for Him) - I am seeking to find that same greater purpose in taking care of my body.

I think taking care of ourselves means different things for different people - it may mean losing weight to a healthier range, it may mean better eating, better hydrating, taking your medication, or not taking any at all. It may mean that you exercise more, eat less or work on your wardrobe ...regardless, its about working on making this body God gave us more usable for His purposes, rather than all the reasons the world tells us we need work on our bodies.

I am using a tool right now to help me do that - I am using Weight Watchers Online (*I am NOT being endorsed in any way to say this BTW ...I just wanted to make that clear! :) and have for about 4 weeks. I have found it is a really great way to keep me on track and focus just enough energy on my physical resources that I dont get too caught up in all of it, but am learning how to take better care of myself.

The online tools are super easy to use, and help me keep track of healthy habits aside from eating the right things (which it also does a great job of doing). It helps me keep track of drinking water, taking my vitamins, and daily activity ..which is a big plus for me.

With all the business in my life, I dont have time for meetings and weigh-ins  (having an infant on one hip and a toddler hanging on my leg would mess up the scale anyways) being able to log in and track my foods, habits and weight at a time when things are more settled down around here, is a huge benefit to doing this online.  I have done both (going to meetings and online)..and this works for me.

Its not as much about losing weight, as about work on making my body sacrifice for the benefit of its Creator...(she says, as she downs coffee serving #2:)

In what ways do you work to perfect holiness in your body? do you present your body as a living sacrifice?

{welcome ifellowshippers!}

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tips on Tuesday: Dicey Game

Okay, I almost feel silly sharing this one ..but it works so well for me and my kiddos that I decided that it is worth exposing my need for such mind tricks :)

This little game I play with myself is a variation of one I saw on Flylady's Facebook page. The way it was described there was a bit confusing, and didnt quite work for us - but we have adapted it and it works so well I literally use it at least one time day!

This game is to help motivate and focus energy in completing tasks ...any list of tasks really, but we use it to get the house under control. I use it for the first hour after my kiddos are in bed for the night.

You will need a place to write a list (I use my white board in my kitchen), a pen, a dice and a timer.

You need a list of 6 tasks (e.g., pick up the living room, dining room, entry way; do laundry, declutter that drawer, etc.). Number them 1-6.

Then, just roll the dice, set the timer for 10 minutes, and get to work on the corresponding task from your list!

In an hour, you have completed all 6 tasks - getting a good amount done, if you are able stay focused for the whole time.

If not, this works great for me throughout the day. I will make my list in the morning, and steal 10 minutes whenever I can get it. I just roll the dice and go with it.

The kids really like this too - I will make them a list of their own chores, number them and let them roll the dice. In a perfect world, we can compete to see who gets their tasks done first...which of course my boys love :)

Like I said, it's kinna funny that require such things, but sometimes I just need some help getting my mind focused on the tasks that need doing. Having someone or something tell me what to do works for me!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Less Stressed Dinner: Crockpot Stroganoff

It has been a crazy week in our house this past week, with MIL in the hospital, our daddy gone to be with here, my daddy visiting ...we got off the routine a bit, which affects alot of stuff
...including the blog :)
 I am excited to get started back this week, with stuff in the pipeline that I hope will encourage and empower you this week! 
{To start 'bout a dinner idea!}

I love beef stroganoff! It is one of my favorite dinners, and with this recipe it is SO easy to make for dinner. 
Crockpot Beef Stroganoff

1.5lb round steak, cut into 1/2 inch slices
1 pkg beef/onion soup mix
1 cup water
1 can cream of mushroom soup
worshestershire sauce
1-2T ketchup
1/2 cup sour cream
1pkg egg noodles, cooked

Brown the steak strips in about 1T of oil, just until brown.  Place beef, soup mix, cream soup and water in the crockpot...low for 6ish hours or high for 4ish hours ..until tender.  Once meat is done, add worshestershire sauce and ketchup..mix until well blended with the meat. Add sour cream last, heat thoroughly (about 20 minutes on high).  Serve over noodles.

You can always add some peas to add a serving of veggies. 
Yummy with some crusty french bread! 

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

A Pile.

Ever had one of those weeks when instead of placing each heartache or anxiety before God carefully and purposefully, you just have to shove it all one big the foot of His throne?

Have you ever been in a place where an orderly listing of all the anxieties of your heart doesnt really work ..that the weight on your heart is so varied that all you can do it pile it up and offer it in a big messy blob?

Yeah, me too.

This week is a hard one for my family my mother in law has suffered stroke. She is a such a precious person to us, and their is much weight that comes with her suffering. We have seen huge improvements over the last couple of days, and so are hopeful of what God will do. But, it bears weight on our spirit and brings heaviness to our hearts in the process.

Along with that, there are many smaller things that can cause a feeling of tension and worry ...despite other wonderful blessings that are clearly ours as well.

So, it seems that this morning as I am trying to rid my heart of things that are already in His hands ...I just have to pile all those little things up, and shove them at the throne in an uncerimonious way ...with an added shove for emphasis as I determine that I will allow God to take care of it all, and that His power and strength overwhelms all of the burden that those things brings to this weak and human heart.

I am reminded this morning of His promise ..."do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace that transcends all understanding will guard your minds and your hearts in Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:7

May your pile be blessed this day ... :)

{welcome ifellowshippers ..thank you for coming}
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