Monday, February 25, 2008

Too exciting for words

This clip shows how we spent our Sunday afternoon. At least the first part of it. I can't think of anything really witty to introduce this, so I'll let it speak for itself.

Oh, I do have one word.

ROOMBA!


video

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Attention all Book People!

For all you out there who consider yourselves, "book people", and by that I don't necessarily mean that you read a lot, I have two websites for you to look at.

The first is Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace. Jim and I found Dave back in the summer of 1997. Jim's mother loaned him an audio book called "Financial Peace." Jim and his mother listened to it, and really took the information to heart. The 4 of us, me, Jim, and his parents, even took one of Dave Ramsey's "Financial Peace University" classes back in the fall of 1997. This has been one of the BEST decisions we've ever made in our marriage. Thankfully, it came along when we had only been married about 5 months. I shudder to think how things would have turned out if we had not had Dave guiding us.

Dave gives old-fashioned financial advice. He tells you to cut up your credit cards ("plastic surgery"), pay off your debt, and then pay cash for things instead of financing them. He helps you learn how to do a budget and gives you encouragement to save all you can. Using Dave's sound principles, we paid off all our student loan debt in a little under a year. We have no car payments and no credit card debt.

The second website is for all you parents out there. It's John Rosemond's Traditional Parenting. Rosemond's column runs every Wednesday in the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. He also goes back to old-fashioned parenting advice. I don't read his website as much as I used to because my girls have outgrown some of their shenanigans. But his column and advice are top-notch! They will make you feel happy and confident in your parenting. He puts the power back where it belongs -- with the parents!

So go check 'em out! Maybe you'll learn something! Or at least read some funny stories. Both websites have an area with interesting or amusing tidbits on it. Both men gives classes and seminars that would be great to attend if they come to your area.

Anyway, I don't know why I felt like posting this tonight. It just kind of came to me. This is my way of saying, "These people helped me and they can help you, too!"

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Possible covenant

Ok. Here is my idea of what our covenant should be. Short and sweet.

I/We promise to:

1. Attend church every Sunday that we aren't ill.
2. Read at least one passage of scripture each day.
3. Pray every morning and every night.

By "passage" I mean a group of verses. Not just one verse, but it doesn't have to be an entire chapter either.

Do you think we should pray every morning and every night or would once a day suffice? Is that a bad question?

What do the rest of you want to covenant for?

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Covenant Group

Back in college, I was a part of a Wesley Covenant Group. A small group of us, like 5-8 people, would meet and sign a "covenant". This covenant would list certain spiritual disciplines (well, ok, MOST of them) that we all agreed to practice during the week. A sample covenant would go like this:

We will serve God and display his love by doing these things: (ok, the real wording was much more eloquent...it's been 12 years)

Attend church once a week.
Read the Bible once a day.
Pray at least once a day.
Take communion once a month.

And so on. We usually had about 8-10 things ranging from very practical "read the Bible" to abstract, "Praise God in everything I do."

I'm thinking I need this again.

Last year, Jim and I took Disciple I. It was great! I learned more than I ever have about the Bible and God. Ever since the class ended, though, I've barely touched my bible. I pray most mornings, but not every morning. I certainly don't stop to take a quiet time. I "pray" at work, but this is along the lines of, "Please, God, don't let this report be screwed up again by me."

So, this is where YOU come in. I want to form an online covenant group that "meets" here every Sunday night. I'll post about how I did during the week, and everyone else can comment on how they did.

And if you mess up, get busy, and don't meet any of your goals, THAT'S OK! This is an accountability group not a "condemn-ability" group. During college, we certainly had weeks where we were like, "God who?" because we got so busy.

Anyway, tomorrow I'll post a sample covenant. I'm thinking something short and sweet. Maybe like 3 things.

So who's with me?

Friday, February 15, 2008

Teebows Designs

My sister-in-law, Robin, has a new website for her Design business! It's called Teebows Designs. It's a play on her last name. (my maiden name) Go check it out!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Chrisvalter presents

Welcome to Chrisvalter Eve! This is a new tradition that I started without even meaning to. Let me explain:

A couple or three years ago, for Valentine's day, I got the girls some gifts. I left a trail of hearts for them to follow to find the "hidden" gifts. That's the only time I've ever done it, but now Alpha has been saying, "You remember that one time when you made us follow those hearts?" So that is why I found myself cutting out paper hearts tonight at 9:30 and taping suckers to them, numbering them, and placing them in various areas around the house.

I made up the name as I was finishing. It is a combination of the words, "Christmas", "Valentine's", and "Easter". Chris-val-ter. (with a short "a" sound) It felt like Christmas, since the girls are asleep. It's kind of like an Easter egg hunt, but it's all for Valentine's day.

NO, Jim, it's not FESTIVUS!

Hope everyone does have a Happy Valentine's Day!

Monday, February 11, 2008

Sun & Snow

The weather here has been crazy! One day it's warm, the next day it's snowing. This reality is evidenced by two pictures I have taken in the past week.

In this picture, Beta & Alpha are trying out their scooters. Beta got a new one for her birthday. The weather on Jan. 27 was warm enough for short-sleeves.






Then, on Jan. 31, it snowed! There wasn't all that much snow. Just enough to make the ground white. But that didn't stop the girls from wanting to play in it. Jim stayed home with them while I went to work. (tax season.....) It was SO hard to work knowing that my girls were having fun without me at home.




That's about all there is to post. I have been working more than usual since people keep bringing their taxes to us. The extra money is nice, but I can't wait to go back to my normal 30 hrs/wk. Maybe even get a day off!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Babies, Babies, and more Babies!

This is scary. There are too many people around me having babies. My coworker, the one who trained me on 75% of my job, had her baby on Monday. My cousin had her twins yesterday. My friend Steven's wife, Leah, (who's my friend, too!) is due on Feb. 20. And then Jennifer is due on March 20!

Yikes! Baby fever!

Somebody give me an aspirin......

A Rat Tale

This is too funny! Y'all have got to go read Jennifer's post about a small critter they found in their kitchen light fixture.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

I did it!

FINALLY!!!!! I conquered the clutter! Tonight, I managed to sort through all the excess toys lying around and divide them up into donate and keep piles! The office has been crowded by all the toys the girls didn't want in their rooms any more. I've also gone through both girls' rooms and gotten toys they don't play with any more, but haven't outgrown, into rubbermaid crates. They are stored in the tops of their closets.

Beta's room isn't quite finished. She took a late nap today so I couldn't ask her which toys she wanted to keep and which she wanted to get rid of. Although that latter part might not happen......She's a bit too sentimental.

Alpha, on the other hand, was like "get these childish things out of my room!" She didn't say those exact words, but she did suggest that some of her things were "childish". That is her new word. She can't stand anything that is remotely "babyish". I think we've entered a new era. *sniff*

Anyway, I just had to shout it from the rooftops! We've got one car's trunk packed with toys to donate to preschool. The other's trunk has Salvation Army toys in it. I've also got a few things hidden away that are going to a consignment sale in about a month. Whoohoo! Now we might actually HAVE an OFFICE where we can both work. It's so exciting!