Monday, May 31, 2010

Love Letters And The SHMILY Game

Love Letters!  Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.  Do you remember writing them back and forth and back and forth to your soon to be spouse?  The anticipation of ripping open that letter, and reading every word, over and over until you could commit it to memory.

Do you write love letters to your spouse now?  I don't.  But I sure want to!  Marriage takes work, we all know that.  It also takes thoughtful creativity to keep the spark alive and ablaze.  

Why not mail (snail mail that is) a love letter to your spouse at work this week?  Or maybe you could hand write a letter and leave it on his pillow at night? 

Play the S.H.M.I.L.Y game.  

I read this in a book once.  This seasoned married couple would leave the message SHMILY in fun, creative places around the house for the other spouse to "find"!  What on earth does SHMILY mean?  







Be creative!  Come back next Monday/Tuesday and be prepared to link up and share if you sent your spouse a love letter, and if you left creative SHMILY messages around the house for your HUBS!

Some ideas if you aren't very creative (write it in soap on the bathroom mirror, leave a message in his lunch, write it on a post-it and put it on his dash, etc) 

The key to the game...  once you are "hit" the other spouse has to leave one for YOU!  

I can't wait to hear how your week went!  

Linking up at Come Have a Peace, Marriage Mondays
 and on Tuesdays, over at Living By Faith:

And Here:

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Saturday, May 29, 2010

Patriotic Yumminess!

 Use these yummy recipes 
for any 
Patriotic Picnic!

YOU'LL NEED 1 container (16 oz.) BREAKSTONE'S or KNUDSEN Sour Cream
1 envelope GOOD SEASONS Parmesan Italian or Italian Dressing Mix

MIX ingredients until well blended; cover.
REFRIGERATE several hours to blend flavors.
SERVE with red pepper strips, jicama strips, radishes, cherry tomatoes and blue corn chips.

YOU'LL NEED 1 slice OSCAR MAYER Beef Bologna
1 KRAFT White American Cheese Singles
4 RITZ Crackers

CUT 4 (1-1/2-inch) circles out of bologna slice, then cut 4 (1-1/4-inch) stars out of Singles.
TOP each cracker with 1 bologna circle and 1 Singles star.

YOU'LL NEED 1 pkg. (16 oz.) coleslaw blend
1 medium  red pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 cup KRAFT Blue Cheese Dressing
1/4 cup  KRAFT Natural Blue Cheese Crumbles
6 slices OSCAR MAYER Bacon, cooked, crumbled

TOSS coleslaw blend with peppers and dressing in large bowl; cover.
REFRIGERATE at least 1 hour.
TOP with the cheese and bacon just before serving. 

YOU'LL NEED 1 cup wagon wheel or rotini pasta, cooked, drained
1 can  (19 oz.) kidney beans, drained, rinsed
3 medium tomatoes, halved, seeded and chopped
2 medium  green peppers, chopped
2 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup  SEVEN SEAS VIVA Italian Dressing
1/2 cup KRAFT Shredded Cheddar Cheese

MIX pasta, beans, tomatoes, peppers and onions in large bowl. Add dressing; toss to coat. Cover.
REFRIGERATE several hours or overnight.
SPRINKLE with cheese just before serving; mix lightly.

YOU'LL NEED 1/2 cup KRAFT Original Barbecue Sauce
2 Tbsp.  honey
1-1/2 tsp. hot pepper sauce
1/4 tsp.  garlic powder
1 broiler-fryer chicken (3 lb.), cut up

HEAT greased grill to medium heat.
MIX all ingredients except chicken.
GRILL chicken 35 to 40 min. or until done (165ºF), turning occasionally and brushing with barbecue sauce mixture for the last 10 min.

YOU'LL NEED 1 pkg. (8 oz.) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 cup  cold milk
1 pkg. (3.4 oz.) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding
1-1/2 cups  thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, divided
1 pkg. (12 oz.) NILLA Wafers
1/2 cup  mixed red, white and blue sprinkles
42 pieces red string licorice (1 inch)

BEAT cream cheese in large bowl with mixer until creamy. Gradually beat in milk. Add dry pudding mix; beat 2 min. Whisk in 1 cup COOL WHIP.
SPOON about 1-1/2 Tbsp. pudding mixture onto each of half the wafers; cover with remaining wafers to make sandwiches. Freeze 2 hours or until filling is firm.
SPREAD tops of wafer sandwiches with remaining COOL WHIP. Dip in sprinkles. Insert licorice piece in top of each for the fuse. Freeze until ready to serve.


Thursday, May 27, 2010

A Tribute To Military Wives

I often ponder the strength it must take a woman to hold down her own fort, when her precious hubby is fighting his battles afar.

What does her own trench look like?  The one that is overlooked and under appreciated.  

Dear Military Wife,

You are often on my mind.  When my husband works late, and I complain to myself... I think of you, dear one.  Day after day, you take care of your home.  You do the expected things; laundry, dishes, making meals, and taking care of the kids.  You also go above and beyond and fill your own gas, fix home repairs, take out the trash, and mow your lawn.  

You lie awake many nights, in the dark and still, and wonder if he is okay.  You long for him to be next to you.  You miss holding him close.  

Maybe you remember the times you'd take him for granted.  A silent plea is made in your heart, Lord, oh Lord, to have him back at home.  I will promise to never take him for granted again.  

You cry many tears.  Often there must be uncontrollable sobbing.  Lord, I just can't do this anymore!  I'm just so lonely. 

God hears your cry, dear woman.  Let Him hold you close while your spouse is gone.  Let Him calm your fears, wipe your tears, and carry you when your strength isn't near.  
As America's Independence Day approaches, and we remember the heros who put themselves in harms way, day after day, we salute them.  

But, dear Wife, I would like to salute you now.  

You are my ultimate hero


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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Win A Marie-Madeline $35 Dollar Gift Certificate

This giveaway is now CLOSED.  

The winner is.............................................................. 

Please contact me by email at curly2880(at)yahoo(dot)com

Aren't you impressed?!  I know I am.  Anybody that can sew, period, just amazes me!  Did you check out all these amazing beauties?  Aprons, skirts, bags, bloomers, dish cloths, fabric, little girl clothing, ladies apparel, sewing patterns, and so much more!

Who are the gals behind Marie-Madeline Studio you ask?  

These lovely ladies:
 In the chilly Winter of 2006, these gals started making one of a kind handbags for friends and family.  In 2007, they officially launched their business, Marie-Madeline Studio.  Since then, their creative endeavors have grown leaps and bounds.  These ladies are creative and LOVE the LORD!  Please enter to win and support these God-fearing entrepreneurs!

Important Details: Please leave a separate comment for each thing you do below.  Also, kindly leave a way for me to contact you if you win.

Enter To Win By:

1) Go visit Marie-Madeline Studio, and comment below on what you like.
2) Sign up for the Marie-Madeline Newsletter.
3) "Favorite" their etsy shop and subscribe to their blog.
4) Follow ("like") Ordinary Inspirations on Facebook.
5) Subscribe to Ordinary Inspirations by email.
6) If you aren't a follower, please follow me via Google Friend Connect.

I will randomly 
pick a winner this Friday afternoon. 

I hope YOU win!


Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Developmental Growth

Riley got a new "used" bike yesterday.  She's gotten the hang of riding it pretty quickly.  Although there are training wheels there to guide her, the bike still gets  a bit wobbly and frightens her.  

"Will you keep your hand on my back, Mommy?" 

I guide her along, and she feels safe with me next to her.  As she gets more comfortable, she asks me to let go.  

"I'm okay, Mommy.  You can let go now."

But the slightest shake in the wheel, I see her stiffen up with fear.  

"Mommy, I need your help!"

Developmental growth and milestones are so exciting!  Especially for a parent, to sit back and watch their child thrive!  It takes me back to those first moments that I had as a child.  

With each new age, it brings exciting and different opportunities.  Just as with a child, any new grown-up change requires a lot of faith and dependence on our Heavenly Father.  He's right there beside us, every step of the way.  Even though we may not always feel the touch of His hand, during those dark times of life, He promises to never leave us.  He tells us in His Word to ask, and seek Him.  (Jeremiah 29:11-13) 

If my daughter stayed on her little tricycle forever, and did not step out in faith and try a big girl bike, she would be missing out on so much! 

As with us, God wants to show us big and exciting things that He can do in our lives.  This requires stepping out in faith.  Removing ourselves from our soft and cozy comfort zones.  Saying YES to that frightening task ahead, that He is calling you and I to obey in.

Are you staying still in your Spiritual Growth?  Are your long legs still bunched, knees tucked up under your chin, as you continue to ride your tricycle?  God has a bicycle waiting for you! 

It will be a little scary at first, sure.  But don't you want to feel the wind in your hair and the sun on your face?  As you choose to walk in obedience, you will experience the true joy and freedom that it brings.

What is God calling you to do?  Will you have faith?  Will you choose to obey?

Jeremiah 33:3:  Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

Ephesians 3:20: Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.

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Friday, May 21, 2010

A Fun Popsicle Idea

It's finally getting warmer here, in Upstate New York!  Outdoors, here we come!  Being cooped up inside during the Winter, with 2 children, 3 and under, can get a little old.  (Holla back all you Mommies)

Here's a fun Popsicle idea:

Just go to your local grocery store and purchase a box of Go Gurt (yogurt in a tube).  Be on the lookout, there are TONS and TONS of Go Gurt coupons in your local paper inserts!

Freeze it!  (I empty the box and put it in my freezer so Riley can grab one herself)

See, so much fun!  Not to mention, your children will get some Vitamin D in the process!

Have your child pull one out of the freezer before lunch time.  Have them set it next to their plate (and treat it as a dessert).  When they are finished with their lunch, it will have thawed enough to eat!  If you want to eat them right away, just nuke them for about 14 seconds.

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