Sunday, November 23, 2008

I know I've been a stranger lately....

I've been busy, and I'm not sure where God's leading me with this blog anymore.

With that said, :), here's an article I'm reprinting with permission - I think it will help you out! :) (Written from a secular viewpoint, but worth reading!!) ENJOY!

Organize and Simplify Your Holiday Spending

Now that the holidays and holiday shopping are upon us, here are 10 simple ways to organize and simplify your spending.

1) Decide on a budget. Decide how much you can spend this holiday season. Once you have your number, determine who you're buying for and how much you can spend on each person to keep at, or under, your budget.

2) Use one credit card. Rather than using several different cards, consolidate all of your purchases on one single credit card. If you have to return something, you'll know which card you used. You won't have to carry tons of cards in your wallet everywhere you go. You'll only have to pay one credit card bill at the end of each month.

3) Think lightweight. When buying gifts for family members and friends that you need to send through the mail, keep the weight of those gifts in mind. The lighter the item (think gift cards!), the less the postage. This is especially true for your international packages.

4) Buy gift cards, for yourself. Determine what your shopping budget is and buy gift cards in your favorite stores for that amount. Whenever you purchase something, use your gift cards. When your gift cards have run out, you've reached your budget.

5) Buy family gifts. Rather than purchasing gifts for each person in a particular family, get one family gift that the entire household will enjoy, such as a game or movie tickets.

6) Simplify toyland. Many young kids will find just as much joy in playing with nested Tupperware containers, drawing on scrap paper and filling a bucket with snow, as they would with a store-bought toy. This is not to say you should be a scrooge this holiday season and I'm not suggesting you don't buy your kids any toys. But try to keep the volume of toys you plan to purchase in mind, especially since many toys are forgotten quickly after the wrapping paper is removed.

7) Shop early. Last minute shopping can result in overspending and tons of stress. You're in good shape if you could get all of your Christmas shopping done at least two weeks prior to December 25th.

8) Increase your income. Do things around the holidays that bring in some extra money, such as a part-time job at a retail store, babysitting, becoming the official neighborhood gift wrapper or selling quilts or whatever crafty thing you make.

9) Get creative. Rather than running to the mall whenever you need a gift, how about giving something you made using something you might already have in your house. Some ideas are hand-stamped stationery, homemade bread or fudge, a quilt or homemade soap. You could also give a gift of a service, such as free babysitting to a friend with kids, or free snow shoveling to a neighbor who is not able to do so.

10) Stick to your list. When you go shopping, go with a list and only buy things on your list. Keep your attention focused on those items you originally set out to buy. When people browse around and window shop, they tend to spend a lot more then they originally intended.

by Maria Gracia - Get Organized Now!
FREE Idea-Pak and E-zine filled with tips, ideas,articles and more to help you organize your home,your office and your life at the Get Organized Now!Web site!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cool email I received today!

BE BLESSED!!! (It DOES actually make a bell, but it's too wide for any of Blogger's layouts. SO, if you want it, email me and I'll send it to you. :))

I am God's child (John 1:12)
I am Christ's friend (John 15:15 )
I am united with the Lord (1 Cor. 6:17)
I am bought with a price (1 Cor 6:19-20)
I am a saint (set apart for God). (Eph. 1:1)
I am a personal witness of Christ. (Acts 1:8)
I am the salt & light of the earth (Matt 5:13-14)
I am a member of the body of Christ (1 Cor 12:27)
I am free forever from condemnation ( Rom. 8: 1-2)
I am a citizen of Heaven. I am significant (Phil 3:20)
I am free from any charge against me (Rom. 8:31 -34)
I am a minister of reconciliation for God (2 Cor 5:17-21)
I have access to God through the Holy Spirit (Eph. 2:18)
I am seated with Christ in the heavenly realms (Eph. 2:6)
I cannot be separated from the love of God (Rom 8:35-39)
I am established, anointed, sealed by God (2 Cor 1:21-22 )
I am assured all things work together for good (Rom. 8:28 )
I have been chosen and appointed to bear fruit (John 15:16 )
I may approach God with freedom and confidence (Eph. 3: 12 )
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me (Phil. 4:13)
I am the branch of the true vine, a channel of His life (John 15: 1-5)
I am God's temple (1 Cor. 3: 16). I am complete in Christ (Col. 2: 10)
I am hidden with Christ in God (Col. 3:3). I have been justified (Romans 5:1)
I am God's co-worker (1 Cor. 3:9; 2 Cor 6:1). I am God's workmanship (Eph. 2:10)
I am confident that the good works God has begun in me will be perfected. (Phil. 1: 5)
I have been redeemed and forgiven ( Col 1:14).
I have been adopted as God's child (Eph 1:5)
I belong to God
Do you know Who you are!? Keep this bell ringing...pass it on 'The LORD bless you and keep you; The LORD make His face shine upon you And be gracious to you; The LORD turn His face toward you And give you peace..' Numbers 6:24-26

Monday, November 17, 2008

Greg McDougal!

Go watch this video, and tell me what you enjoy about Greg. Leave me a comment!

Go to his website,, and leave me a comment about he and his family.

For every comment you leave, you're entered to win a copy of his NEW CD, TRY A LITTLE KINDNESS - duets with MANY musical guests, including THE OAKRIDGE BOYS!

All you have to do to win is leave me comments. :D They MUST have something to do with the two lines above. No vague, "Enter me!" kind of entries will be counted. :D

ENJOY. And bless Greg and the new foundation in any way you can - prayers are most important, but financial blessings are the way God uses His people to be His hands!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Good Wednesday Afternoon!

PHEW. I think I usually block November out of my mind. :D I'm SO busy, I can't even think!!!!! Those of you who follow my stamping blog know I've been out of town on business, teaching two to three classes a week, and trying to keep all the OTHER balls up in the air - I've got a craft fair this weekend, and prayers for God's prosperity, whether that be meeting people, networking, or sales, would be greatly appreciated!

Isn't this hawk awesome?? I admire these birds - they are SO majestic! - but I have a tendency to forget that their prey is other animals and birds I love. He comes around our back yard every now and then, but this is the first time I've been able to get a picture of him; he's very wary of movement!

I chose this verse to go with this picture today because of something that is deeply troubling me - and it has to do with the church we used to attend. If you still attend that church, please know that I'm not trying to be ugly or gossip; I hope you know me better than that. But there is something I need to talk about: God's insistence that we LOVE one another, not only in a certain church body, but AS BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN CHRIST.

As Christians, we are supposed to be known by our LOVE - for one another, for Christ, and for the world. Unfortunately, what I've seen happening the past 20 years or so is a building of walls in MANY of our church bodies; have you ever been in a sermon and heard something like, "Thank God we don't do what that church down the road does!"? Or, "Unlike so-and-so, we truly believe in the (fill in the blank)!"? Doctrine and theological differences are NOT reasons to build walls, my sisters.

Those walls are WRONG. We are to show LOVE to each other, not disdain. Now, we don't have to LIKE each other, at least from what I can read. :D But we DO have to show love. How?? Guess what! There's a whole chapter in I Corinthians that DEFINES love and how to show it!

It's NOT easy to love people who are different, or who we PERCEIVE as being different or having done something wrong to us. But that same chapter says we're to keep NO RECORD OF WRONGS. As a matter of fact, God tells us that if we don't forgive, we won't be forgiven (Matt. 6:14, Luke 6:37). Harsh, right? Nope. Take a look at the parable Jesus told us in Matthew 18:23-35!

That church has had a revolving door since we began attending ten years ago. People just leave. Regardless of the reasons involved, there should be nothing but love expressed toward each other, on both sides. Or, as Paul said in the Galations passage, we'll be destroyed by each other. Do you know how many people don't go to church anymore because of the hypocrisy they've seen? It's so very, very sad. The very place we should be able to go and be OURSELVES, and accepted for who we are, is the place that's become a place to put on a false front and pretend that everything's OK - because we might really get hurt if anyone knew who we really are.

It goes back to that poem I posted last month. We all NEED to be able to be honest about who we are. There is NOT ONE righteous among us, but in Him, we are ALL given HIS righteousness. Who are we to judge each other????

Sisters, LET US LOVE ONE ANOTHER, FOR LOVE IS FROM GOD. If I have wronged you, please tell me so I can ask forgiveness and get us right with each other and with Him!!!!

We are LOVED by God; isn't it time we let the WORLD know we're His, by showing His love for each OTHER????? His GRACE is abundant enough for ALL!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

What a beautiful morning!

Good morning, girls. I'm sorry I've been so absent lately; I call this my busiest month of the year, and it's definitely living up to that so far. :)

Did you go take the personality test in yesterday's post??? I'd love to know what you came out as. :D

It's THANKFUL NOVEMBER; I challenged you to post, SOMEWHERE, one thing you were thankful for each day of this month. I KNOW at least one of you is having an awful month, having to make life-or-death decisions with a loved one. While I know that doing this exercise won't make those decisions - or this period in your life - easy, I DO know it will help your heart to remember what God has done for you.
SO! Are you doing it? You should have six things on your list so far, since it's the sixth of November. :) Here are mine:
  1. I'm thankful for my hostess club stampers, who help me keep in business!
  2. I'm thankful for our new church, new pastor, and new lessons.
  3. I'm thankful for new friends!
  4. I'm thankful for a beautiful home and loving parents who grace us with it.
  5. I'm thankful the election is OVER!
  6. I'm thankful for my husband running errands so I don't have to!

You can use the comments section to list, everyone, or you can just use it to tell me you're listing. :) I promise you that this will make you feel even more grateful, and lift your heart. Remember the old song!

Count your blessings!

Name them one by one!

Count your many blessings -

See what GOD has done!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

FUN personality test!!!!

I'll be back later with a check on how your Thankful November is going.... :)

Youniverse Personality TestYouniverse Personality Test