Tag Archives: family

31 Days Unplugged – Day 14 – Television

13 Mar

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At this point, I am more unplugged that I ever thought I would be!  As a SAHM, I sometimes miss the human interaction that the Internet affords me, but I am happy that I am spending more time on things that matter.  My house seems more peaceful and I feel much less stressed out than before.

Today, we are taking it to an extreme.  I want you to think about how much television you and your family watch.  While doing some research for this post, I found some really interesting information.

Did you know that the average American spends up to 34 hours a week watching live TV?  That’s not counting movies and what we watch on the Internet.

One study found that for every hour spent watching TV, our life expectancy decreases by 22 minutes. (To put that into perspective, for every cigarette smoked, life expectancy supposedly decreases by 11 minutes.)* Can you believe that?!

There is tons of research out there that shows that we make unhealthy food choices while watching TV, and of course we get no physical exercise while we’re sitting on the couch.

If that doesn’t convince you, check out this article.  It has tons of really interesting info regarding the pitfalls of watching too much television.

So today’s challenge deals with the amount of time we spend in front of the TV.

Challenge #11-Keep a running tab of how much television you and your family watch today.  Just keep a post-it on the kitchen counter and make a note of times that the TV is on.  At the end of the day, look at how much time you spent in front of the TV, and make a plan to cut that time in half.  

If you’re anything like me, a trip to the library for tons more books is in order!

*from http://greatist.com/happiness/how-much-tv-too-much

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Monday Praises Link-Up: Family

7 Oct
Cousins!

Cousins!

Good morning!  I hope that you all had a fabulous weekend.  We did!

Yesterday was the annual Doby family reunion.  The Doby’s are my grandma’s family in Mt. Airy.  It is one event that we really try to make every year if we can. We had a great time seeing everyone and eating all of the good food.

Too bad the ride home (almost 2 hours) was a little rough-Maddie just could not get settled.  We were so glad to get back to Bonlee!

Seeing all of my family today made me think about family in general.  God knew that we wouldn’t be able to face this world alone, so he provided us with people to help us along the way.  He really knew what He was doing, didn’t he?

There are all sorts of families, especially now.  My family is a little crazy, I will admit! We have some steps and re-steps and un-steps.  We live in different places and have gone to different schools and have different views on life. We have been broken, but we have managed to come back together stronger and a little better, I think.

I just want to praise God today for blessing me with a wonderful family. He placed us together in this life for a special reason, and I really appreciate that. I am so glad that, no matter what, my children will always have this family to support them and love them.

“You can kiss your family and friends good-bye and put miles between you, but at the same time you carry them with you in your heart, your mind, your stomach, because you do not just live in a world but a world lives in you.”– Frederick Buechner

 

Special thanks to Walk Humbly With God for hosting our Monday Praises Link-Up.  Make sure you visit her page for some really special blessings on this rainy Monday!

5 Signs That We Are Turning Into Our Parents…

10 Jul

*Disclaimer: In no way am I implying that there is anything wrong with becoming our parents.  God has blessed me with wonderful parents, step-parents, and parents-in-law.  Mama, do not call me up asking, “What is wrong with being like me?”*

1.  Just yesterday, Jason yelled to the kids, “You need to either go outside or stay inside!  If you come back in the house you are putting on your pajamas and going to bed! And close the door behind you!”

2. If anyone calls our house after 9:00 p.m. we scowl and sigh and say, “Who is calling us this late?” However, we will call your tail at 7:00 in the morning without a second thought.  We just assume that no one sleeps past 6:30 anymore.

3. We called the police on the people who were setting off fireworks late at night on the beach outside our hotel.  I know, I know, that is terrible, but when you are sharing a room with a crying baby who keeps being awakened by the loud bangs, you gotta do what you gotta do.

4. My daughter (and, ok, sometimes my son) wears my heels more than I do.

5. We are considering canceling our satellite TV because the only channels we watch are Fox News and the History Channel, but we aren’t sure about that newfangled Hulu.

 

Surf City Pics

25 Jun

Hi everyone!  I hope you are all doing well and having a great week so far.

We are finishing up our third day of vacation at Surf City.  We really like this beach so far and are having a great time. The house we rented is right on the beach, and I mean RIGHT ON the beach.  The front of the house is actually built into the sand dune.  This is so convenient for me, because if I forget something or someone has to use the potty, it is no big deal to get back to the house. When you are at the beach with a 2-year old and 4-year old (plus Emma, who is 1), things like that make a big difference!

Aaron and Noah joined us today, so we have a full house.  Charlie is so excited to have them here.  I can’t wait to see the fun they will have on the beach tomorrow.

After a wonderful dinner of grilled shrimp and mahi mahi tonight, we walked down the beach to the pier, got some ice cream, and walked to the end of the pier.  I wish I had taken my camera because it was absolutely gorgeous!

Here are some pics from the past couple of days:

Charlie doing some serious fishing on the beach.

Charlie doing some serious fishing on the beach.

All of that fishing obviously wore Jason and Charlie out!

All of that fishing obviously wore Jason and Charlie out!

Maddie and her shovel

Maddie and her shovel

Jason spent a LOT of time digging holes on the beach!  The kids love it!

Jason spent a LOT of time digging holes on the beach! The kids love it!

Emma on the beach

Emma on the beach

...and Emma in the bucket!

DSC_0423Emma loved sitting in the bucket of water.

These kids are crazy!

These kids are crazy!

Casey and Emma looking for sharks teeth on the beach.  We found tons!

Casey and Emma looking for sharks teeth on the beach. We found tons!

I love this pic of Jason and Charlie sitting in the HUGE hole they dug!

I love this pic of Jason and Charlie sitting in the HUGE hole they dug!

My toes!!!

My toes!!!

Charlie was so excited when Jason buried him in the sand!

Charlie was so excited when Jason buried him in the sand!

Now my goal for tomorrow is to have someone take some pics with ME in them!

Happy Mother’s Day!

12 May

Happy Mother’s Day to all of the mothers in my life.  You know who you are!  So many mothers have had and continue to have such a huge influence on my life, especially now that I am a mom myself.

My grandmothers are women that I have always looked to for advice and support.  My grandma Edna is still living and I just love her so much.  She reminds me that motherhood is mostly instinct and trial-and-error, and not to make such a big deal out of it. Grandma had a big part in raising me and my sisters, and I will never forget that.  I will always remember her use of the word sh**, which is still a big part of her vocabulary, or when I started wearing deodorant and wanted everyone to buy me some so I could have all different types and she told me that one was enough.  I was so excited and she was so gentle and matter-of-fact.  That quality (gentle matter-of-factness, if that’s a word) is something I strive to have with my own children.

Jason’s grandma Olline passed away last year, but she is still someone that I think of often.  She was such an example of strength and hard work. I used to love sitting in her living room asking her questions about things she had done in her life, and she had done a lot!  I am glad that I have those memories to share with Charlie and Maddie one day.

Both Jason and I have been blessed to have all of our grandmothers in our lives for a long time, and I am glad that Charlie and Maddie have had the chance to know their Great-Grandma’s Edna and Olline.  I know that MeMa and Grandma Robinson would have loved them as well.

My mother-in-law Sandra is a wonderful example to me as well.  She has been in my life since I was 17 years old, and is a picture of understanding, patience, and love.  She is always there for me whenever I need her help, and doesn’t ask any questions or act like she doesn’t have time.  I am most grateful to her for raising such a wonderful son, and I hope that I can be as good to him as she has been and continues to be.

Some of the most influential people in my life at this time are my mommy-friends.  I believe that different friends are put into our lives at different times when we need them, and the friends in my life right now are people that I will always love and appreciate.  It is so valuable to have women to talk to, to complain to, and to ask questions of.  I appreciate them letting my children practice life on their children!

My sisters and sisters-in-law bring power into my life.  I love them all so much and appreciate their sisterhood.  Just knowing that they are by my side when I need them makes me feel strong and proud. Cousins are first friends, and I am so happy that Charlie and Maddie have been given wonderful cousins to grow up with.

Lastly, the mother of all mothers.  My mama.  I just love her so much.  She is a driving force in my life.  Charlie wants to fold up the house and move it next to hers, but I don’t see how we could get much closer.  I told Mama once that you don’t really understand how much you are loved until you have children of your own.  It is overwhelming to me to know that there is someone who loves me as much as I love Charlie and Maddie, and that is her.  I now know her sacrifices and her mother’s guilt, and I love her all the more for that.

Me and my little blessings!  We found this turtle in our yard when we got home from church.

Me and my little blessings! We found this turtle in our yard when we got home from church.

Love is patient; love is kind. Love is not jealous; is not proud; is not conceited; does not act foolishly; is not selfish; is not easily provoked to anger; keeps no record of wrongs; takes no pleasure in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth; love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, and endures all things. ~I Corinthians 13:4-7

Most of all, I am so glad that I am surrounded by examples of godly women, women who are not ashamed to be women in a time when that is sometimes looked down upon.  I love you all.

The Longest Winter

4 Apr

Am I the only one who feels like this winter is dragging on FOREVER?  I mean, we had a couple of days of gorgeous weather, with gorgeous sunshine and temps in the 60’s, then boom, this morning it was sleeting, yes, sleeting, at my house.  Are you serious?

This weather is the perfect reflection of the tone and mood of my life right now.  Last Friday afternoon (only a week ago tomorrow, although it feels like a lifetime) my 8-year old nephew, Sam, went to the Dr. to have an MRI of his brain to see why he was having some clumsiness and coordination problems.  Much to everyone’s surprise and dismay, a tumor was discovered on his brain and he and his family were instructed to go home to gather some things then go to Duke.  He had surgery to remove the tumor the next day and is currently still in the hospital recovering from the surgery.  This was found to be an aggressive tumor and little Sam will be undergoing a combo of chemo and radiation over the next 6 months.

Life, like nature seems to have done right now, has stood still for my family for the past week.  I think we’re all walking around as if we’re in a dream, just waiting to wake up.  We are leaning on our faith in God and believe that HE can and will heal Sam.  The outpouring of support from our community as well as strangers has been uplifting.  We started a Facebook page for Sam 2 days ago, and already it has almost 2500 followers. You are welcome to follow along on this journey with us at: http://www.facebook.com/PrayersForSamHolt.

Yesterday was a nice day, weather-wise.  It’s like Spring is trying to break through, but just can’t quite do it. The kids and I walked around outside for awhile and I took some pics with Instagram, which I am still trying to figure out.

I have always loved the blooms on my camilla bush.

I have always loved the blooms on my camilla bush.

Madster enjoying a few minutes outside.

Madster enjoying a few minutes outside.

Our Japanese Maple is starting to bloom.  I love seeing it outside our front door.

Our Japanese Maple is starting to bloom. I love seeing it outside our front door.

 

I know that this difficult, long winter will eventually end for my family, but right now it just seems like it never will.  Please keep Sam and all of us in your prayers.  We serve a mighty God who is in control of every season of our lives, and I know he has spring and summer planned right around the corner.

A Sure Sign that Spring is Near

12 Mar

One thing I love about my mother is that she always knows from a simple telephone call when I need a few minutes alone.  She is so good about taking the kids for a little while so I can have a breather and I so appreciate that.  That is one pro of living next door to your mom: It’s no big deal for her to say, “Can I stop by and take the kids for a little while?”

While she had the kids for a couple of hours this afternoon, I did one of my favorite things: Washed off the screened-in porch.  You may think that sounds crazy, but it is so therapeutic to me.  Jason got the water hose out of winter storage for me and I went to it.  I just love the sounds of the outdoors and the water dripping, and seeing the dirt being washed away…I don’t know why, exactly, but I love it. When I tell Jason, “I am going to wash off the porch now,” He takes the kids and leaves me to it!

We eat a lot of meals around this table!

We eat a lot of meals around this table!

For me, this is a definite sign that spring is coming.  We use the porch every day during the spring, summer, and fall.  We love to eat breakfast and dinner out there (most days it is too hot for lunch on the porch), and the kids spend a lot of time playing in their water table out there.  I love to sit in one of the comfy wicker chairs and read or look on my Kindle.

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So ready for winter to be over!

So ready for winter to be over!

I am so ready for a summer of long, hot days outside, playing in the water, grilling out with family, staying up late, and washing off the porch!

 

Our Winter Getaway

4 Mar

Whew, life has been busy for us lately!  Between Jason’s work, turning over the duplex, family obligations, and many, many other things, I have been feeling like our little family has just not been quite together.  I decided a few weeks ago that we needed to get away for a quick weekend at the beach to just enjoy each other without all of the distractions of everyday life.  Since it is still technically winter and pretty cold, I found a great resort at Myrtle Beach that features 2 indoor water parks.  While it was a little strange for us to be at the beach this time of year, we had an absolutely wonderful weekend!

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Charlie and Maddie were so excited!  We have been telling them for a couple of weeks that were were going to the beach, so they were happy that the day had finally arrived.

Charlie and Maddie were so excited! We have been telling them for a couple of weeks that were were going to the beach, so they were happy that the day had finally arrived.

It was cold but still sunny and gorgeous.  We were very cold running back and forth between the two water parks!  Luckily, all of the water was heated.

It was cold but still sunny and gorgeous. We were very cold running back and forth between the two water parks! Luckily, all of the water was heated.

There were tons of birds on the beach and floating in the water.

There were tons of birds on the beach and floating in the water.

Jason and Maddie-Jason is always so photogenic.

Jason and Maddie-Jason is always so photogenic.

We went to Broadway at the Beach Saturday night and had dinner at the Key West Grill.  There were pirates everywhere so Charlie loved it!

We went to Broadway at the Beach Saturday night and had dinner at the Key West Grill. There were pirates everywhere so Charlie loved it!

After playing at the water parks all day on Saturday, we went to Broadway at the Beach for an early dinner.  We had a wonderful meal at the Key West Grill.  Because of the time of year and the odd hour that we were eating, we were almost alone in the restaurant!  For anyone who has been out to dinner with a 2-year old and a 3-year old, you will understand that this was ideal.  My only regret is that I ordered a cup instead of a bowl of she-crab soup.  It was so good and Maddie ate half of mine!

Feeding the fish and ducks.

Feeding the fish and ducks.

Maddie was afraid of all of the seagulls that were walking around us. She refused to walk by them, so Charlie scared them all off.

Maddie was afraid of all of the seagulls that were walking around us. She refused to walk by them, so Charlie scared them all off.

 

Charlie on a T-Rex.

Charlie on a T-Rex.

Riding the cars at the "Pavilion."

Riding the cars at the “Pavilion.”

A few of the rides from the old Myrtle Beach Pavilion have been moved here.  Charlie and Maddie loved riding the cars.  Jason and I kept telling the kids, “When we were little the Pavilion…….” and finally it hit us that we were old!  Myrtle Beach has changed a lot since were were little kids.

Charlie in his new bed that Jason created for him.

Charlie in his new bed that Jason created for him.

We had such a great time this weekend.  I started to get the after-vacation blues when we got home today, then realized that I don’t technically have to go to work tomorrow and I got over it!  I am so blessed to have the husband and kids that I do, and we live a really great life.  I am so thankful for that.  Sometimes it just takes a weekend to get over life!

 

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Planting with the Crazy Peoples

1 Mar

Am I the only one who is  SO ready for spring?  I decided today to do a little early planting with Charlie and Maddie and enjoy checking out the fruits of our labor for the remainder of this dreary winter.

All we did was take a glass container (I bought this one at Pottery Barn years ago and use it year-round for different decorations), fill it with glass beads, stick some calla lily bulbs down into the beads, and add a little water.  This would be really cute in mason jars or any type of glass vase or pitcher.

Charlie was being silly for the camera so I had to include some pics of his hilarious self.

Eating cookies and playing with the beads a bit

Eating cookies and playing with the beads a bit

Charlie was cracking me up

Charlie was cracking me up

Adding the beads

Adding the beads

A few more...

A few more…

This is what it looks like after the bulbs and some water were added.  It isn't too pretty now, but when they begin growing they will be gorgeous!  I hope they're ready in time for Easter...

This is what it looks like after the bulbs and some water were added. It isn’t too pretty now, but when they begin growing they will be gorgeous! I hope they’re ready in time for Easter…

This was really fun to do with the kids and I know they’ll be so excited when the flowers start growing.  We’re definitely going to have to talk about planting seeds in people by talking about Jesus (Matt 28:19) and also how seeds grow into big, beautiful things (Matt 13: 30-32).  Springtime is such a wonderful opportunity to teach about God’s love for us and how his love is expressed in nature.

I’ll post some pics of our flowers when they bloom!

 

 

 

 

 

An Afternoon with Sweet Addison

24 Feb

We finally made it to Raleigh to spend some time with Jill, Alvin, and little Addison today.  Even though we have seen Addison since she has been born, this is the first time that we have been able to make it to Jill and Alvin’s house to visit. Between the kids being sick and just life in general, we just haven’t been able to make it.  Addison has changed so much since we saw her a few weeks ago.

Addison and Uncle Jason

Addison and Uncle Jason-She does look a little like Jason, I think.

Charlie giving Addison a little tickle

Charlie giving Addison a little tickle

So Maddie had to give a tickle as well

So Maddie had to give a tickle as well

Pretty girl

Pretty girl

Charlie and Maddie wanted to play with Addison and her toys.  Maddie wanted to treat her like one of her dolls, I think.

Showing Addison how her toys work

Showing Addison how her toys work

Maddie wanted to play peek-a-boo by covering Addison's head with a blanket!

Maddie wanted to play peek-a-boo by covering Addison’s head with a blanket!

Here you go, Addison

Here you go, Addison

And Maddie trying out the seat for herself

And Maddie trying out the seat for herself

We had a great visit today.  Hopefully it won’t be too long before we can make it back (although Jill may not want to see us for awhile:)).