Coming Soon....

I have been blogging like crazy lately!

Oh wait...really? You haven't seen me doing much?  Well that would be because I have a new site coming. This has been a long time coming and my sweet hubby has finally given me the nudge I needed to get going. And I have been working on it like crazy, behind the scenes.

I am set to launch this new site in early January! Lord willing I can get everything done in time. If you don't see me much in December that is why.

Stay Tuned!


Christmas Pictures

We took hours of family photos yesterday and got a bunch of great photos :)

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I love this man!


How to Do Black Friday

Black Friday for some sounds like fun and for others it sounds like pulling teeth. However whether or not it is "fun"  to you may be irrelevant. Prices are going up, up, up and like it or not, Black Friday has some amazing deals. So if you are heading out still full from last nights dinner and blurry eyed from not having been up this early in years, you had better grab a Peppermint Mocha on the way and remember these Black Friday rules. 

1) Collect and Search all store Ads
 You never know when a great deals will show up at an unlikely store. For instance, I don't normally shop at Sears. Nothing against Sears I just never have. This year I was looking through Sears ad and saw 3 or 4 presents on my gift list for great prices. Now Sears is on my list of stores to stop at. I never would have known to stop there on Friday except that I look through each and every Ad. 

BlackFridayInfo.com is a great website with all the up to date information on Black Friday. You can search through a list of each item on sale at each store, view the scan of their actual ad or search for a specific item, i.e. Apple Ipod, and a list comes up with each store selling that item on Friday. Great resource

2) Make a Game Plan
Most stores on Black Friday only carry a limit number of their big ticket items and once these amazing deals are gone, their gone! So for the big items, especially electronics like televisions and video games, plan on getting to the store when they open or they are likely to sell out before you get there. 

Now a word of warning this year, many stores are opening early this year. Black Friday is starting to turn into Thursday night. Many stores are opening at midnight on Thursday night (or even 10pm!). 

3) Prioritize the items
Doorbuster deals are the reason we get out of bed so early to head to the stores. Doorbuster deals lure us into the stores and they are often the best deals of the day. This also means that these items are often the first to sell out. So prioritize what you want to get. There is very possibly 2, 3, or more stores with doorbuster deals you want. Pick your must have and go there first! You don't want to make a stop or two and get items of less importance to show up for your must have item and have them sold out. If you simply can't live without two doorbuster deals then recruit a friend...

4) Recruit a Friend
Shopping together can be fun, but tag teaming the deals can save you money and heartache. You can head out to Walmart when they open and buy two Cricut Imagines (plus two cartridges) for $187 each (YES! This is a real deal this year!!). Meanwhile your friend heads off to Target to snag you both a new Television. You then meet up after the doorbuster deals. This way you ensure you get the hottest items plus you get to do the less urgent fun shopping now (such as clothing shopping perhaps?). 

5) Get ready for Crowds
If you have never been Black Friday shopping before then just know one thing: There will be crowds. And lots of them! You probably won't have the space to leisurely peruse the shelves as you would like. But don't fret. Go into the Black Friday shopping expecting this. Don't go with plans to pop into a store for 10 minutes and get what you need. This will likely be an all day outing or at least a few hours. give yourself plenty of time and be relaxed. 

Remember what lessons you told your children the day before about being Thankful. And then be thankful. These deals are amazing. But if as you walk up to that perfect coat that's 90% off don't get angry as someone snatches it moments before you can reach for it. Be thankful and be lighthearted as you shop. 

6) Be prepared for long lines
This is a must. Expect the long lines and they won't be as bad. Charge up for your iPhone and make sure you have the newest Angry Birds downloaded. Or store up all your blog reading until you are standing in line. Or better yet, grab a friend who you haven't chatted with in a while. The time will simply melt away as you chat. I always go with my mom 

So bottom line, have fun tomorrow. Yes, it can be stressful. And yes it the crowds and long lines can be horrifying! But just remember to keep to light. Someone of us have to go out shopping on Friday because we can't afford regular price. 

Speaking of, I need to go make my game plan and prioritize my gift list! Only one more day left....

Will you be going out shopping on Black Friday? What stores will you be at when they open?


10 Day You Challenge: 1 Picture of Yourself

Haha. It was crazy hair night at Awana. You can't tell from the photo but our hair was sparkly as well :)


10 Day You Challenge: 2 Songs

1) Be Thou My Vision-Enfield

2)Jesus, I My Cross I Have Taken-Enfield

Short and to the point :)


10 Day You Challenge: 3 Films

3 Films

This is a very hard one for me. Hm...
1) The Lord of the Rings Trilogy (I am counting this as 1)

2) Ever After

3) The Princess Diaries
Okay...I couldn't think of a third one and I used to watch this movie over and over when I was younger. I really haven't watched it in years. So it's my number 3 ;)


10 Day You Challenge: 4 Books

4 Books

What? Just 4? This is hard, I Love to read!
This is a list that I'm sure could vary from day to day. 

1)The Excellent Wife ~Martha Peace
A must read for every woman! Martha so beautifully lays out the scripture concerning how to be a sister, daughter, wife, and mother. Warning: This book will seriously convict you and make you realize time and again how sinful we can be. It's great!! :)

2)Practicing Hospitality ~Patricia Ennis & Lisa Tatlock
A beautiful picture of what hospitality looks like. It's not a big beautiful perfectly arranged house but rather a heart for serving others and being obedient to God's word and His Kingdom. Another must read!

3) John MacArthur-I can't pick just one of his books so I'm listing him as an author instead! :)
Anything by MacArthur is so Biblically sound and extremely readable. He has authored such classics as Twelve Extraordinary Woman, The MacArthur Study Bible, Fundamentals of the Faith, and too many more to list. 

4) Lord of the Rings Trilogy
I'm a BIG fiction fan so I had to throw at lease one in here. GREAT books and great movies! :)


10 Day You Challenge: 5 Foods

Day #5 of the 10 Day you Challenge
5 Foods
1) Shrimp 
2) King Crab Legs
3) Cheesy Spinach Artichoke Dip
4) Baked Lays
These are my weakness! I will eat an entire bag in one sitting if I'm not paying attention. I don't like the flavors either, just the plain ones. And regular potato chips are gross to me. It's just the baked lays! Go figure!
5) Chinese food of any kind but more specifically a good Egg Drop Soup


10 Day You Challenge: 6 Places

I took a little break from doing the 10 day you challenge (okay a month long break!!). But I'm back to finish it. I started a new job in September and I have been so tired and worn out from learning it all. But I'm starting to get the hang of it and need to get back into blogging, I miss you all so much! :)

6 Places
1) Go on an East Coast trip with my Husband
My mother's family all live in Pennsylvania and I when I was a kid I would go back there and every summer (We live in California). A couple summers in a row I would go for 1 1/2 - 2 months at a time. I feel like I lived part of my childhood in Pennsylvania. My grandparents would take me all over the East Coast from Canada down to West Virginia and everywhere in between. My husband has been on the East Coast once for a family trip when he was younger. I dream of taking him back to explore all the places I did as a kid and enjoy that together :)

2) I want to take a cruise of the Mediterranean Sea (Nervous about getting sea sick though!). This cruise would stop at the rest of my 6 places....

3) Italy
The beauty. The history. The food! 

Again, the beauty and the history! I am a huge history fan, especially when it comes to Biblical history and learning the Bible better!

5) Jerusalem (Israel has a whole):
Oh the history! To walk where Jesus walked. To follow the path of Paul's missionary trips (see the previous destinations!). To understand the culture and the geography. Sounds Amazing!!!!!

6) Egypt
Egypt is last on my Mediterranean list so if I can only pick three then I pick Italy, Greece and Israel. But come on, Egyptian history is fascinating!!! And still lots of Biblical history to learn!  

These are all dreams of course. Dreams I'm not sure will ever be fulfilled but dreams none the less. :) France should be on this list as well as #7. :)


My Dream Apartment Search

A warm breeze, sounds of laughter and joy all around, and my toes buried deep in hot lovely sand. Surfboards and kites strewn around the beach. My husband, joyfully grabs his boogie board and hits the perfect wave. I watch all of this from right outside our front door with an ice cold tea in my hand.

In California this dream is simply that, a dream. Any apartment in California is expensive let alone a beachfront dream apartment, even if it is just a rental. So in thinking of my "dream" apartment I knew that I had to venture outside of California. I started searching on Vacany.com to see what I could find and my journey took me across the country.

My search began in Texas. Yes, Texas. I love country music and thought that the good old south would be a fun place to begin. Bucket hats and the slow pace of southern culture seems romantic and peaceful compared to fast paced Southern California. I quickly came across a winning Texan apartment: The Mirage Apartments (Sounds wonderful doesn't it?)
This is what pulled me in, the Pool!
Can't you just imagine sitting by this reading your Micro-Biology textbook...okay so maybe studying would take place more in this your living room.

In love with this living room! So much space to spread out all your textbooks and papers!
And if you can believe it, this apartment fits into our budget for apartments! Did I mention California is expensive?

But alas, I did some more research and realized I could never live in Texas, it is far too hot for me!

Texas=Too Hot

So my search continued.I decided that my next stop should be somewhere cooler for a change. A snowy winter wonderland sounds beautiful compared to a land where it never falls below the 70's (IN WINTER!). I decided to search the West Coast this time and my sights fell upon lovely Washington State. With the booming city of Seattle and lots of rich landscape, Washington seemed the perfect fit. Then I found it, the beautiful Williamsburg Court Apartments.
Beautiful and rustic, this apartment was even below our budget. Just think of the parties you could throw in this historic looking beautiful complex. But alas again, I started thinking about the weather. Sure, the snow would be beautiful at first. But having to get up at 5am to shovel snow doesn't sound like fun to me. Nope are are not snow people, I like some warmth!

Washington=Too Cold

At this point I started feeling discouraged. Maybe our dream apartment isn't out there! Maybe we are just that couple who will have to settle for paying too much for a mediocre apartment. Then Vacancy.com came to my rescue! They showed me how to believe in my dream once again.

I started thinking about where we could get wonderful warmth but also have it cool off a bit. I started searching in Florida. Florida came up with apartment after apartment. Quickly I was able to sort by apartments in our price range hoping all the good ones wouldn't be gone. Loading....As my slow internet started bringing up the search results I got excited again...countless (beautiful) apartments starting coming up within our price range! I quickly sorted again and found those ON the water. And.We.Found.A.Winner!!!

Can you say WOW!? Beautiful apartment with a beautiful pool and can you see the waterfront right behind it?

This apartment has everything we could want. 
1. It's affordable and within our budget!!!
2. It's ON the water
3. We were able to search Vacancy.com and see all the of available floor plans to make sure the apartments would work for what WE want and need! (Along with prices for each floor plan!)
4. Vacancy.com also listed for us the amenities included to figure out if we needed a fridge and things like that. And yes, if you were wondering, it does have an outdoor fire pit as well as a sundeck complete with Hammocks. 

5. We were even able to contact the apartments directly from Vacancy.com to apply for our Florida waterfront apartment the very same day!

In the end Vacancy.com allowed me to search out my dreams. I was able to quickly rule out what was Too Hot, Too Cold and find what was just right for us. Our dream apartment is out there waiting for us right now and I was able to quickly and efficiently find it with Vacancy.com's great online tools. 

Well I need to go now to finish our apartment application and see about getting my job transferred to Florida! Hope you find your dream apartment some day too!

Online Marriage Conference-TODAY!

At the Well is hosting an online marriage conference today!

The first sessions starts at 1:00 pm today, it's not too late to register. Sessions will run from today through Thursday afternoon. And the best part is, included in your $10 registration is a recording of all the sessions. 

So even if you cannot attend all the sessions, you get to listen to them later at your leisure. 

If you are not familiar with At the Well then head over today to check them out. They are a wonderful group of Titus 2 women striving to serve the Lord by encouraging and admonishing women!

Head over to the conference homepage to learn more. I hope to see many of you there today. I am excited to get some sound teaching and encouragement from these Ladies.


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