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Monday, September 26, 2011

I like cold beer.

So this is a topic I've wanted to talk about for a while, but to be honest, I've been scared to bring it up. Maybe you'll judge me? Or disagree?

But, I read a couple of posts last week that gave me the motivation to go ahead and hit publish. There seems to be some buzz surrounding the topic lately, so I'm chiming in. I'm curious to hear what you all have to say about the topic.

I drink. I look forward to a cold beer at the end of the day. Is that wrong?

Does a cold beer fit the mold of a christian, homeschooling mother of two? Probably not.

Am I walking around with a beer bottle in hand after 5? No.

Hubs and I feel strongly about being conservative about this in front of the boys. We make an effort to keep any beer or wine in the fridge in the garage, and we always pour into an opaque glass.

It stinks I don't drink wine much. It's much more lady like and socially accepted. But, twisting the top off of a cold one isn't exactly going to win me the classiest mom award. Oh well.

Drinking is a sensitive topic, especially in the community of other Christian women. Many of my close personal friends and sisters do not drink. They do not agree with it. That's ok.

For a while I was very conservative about this too and didn't drink at all. But, my doing that was more about other insecurities I had, and not so much about a belief that it was wrong. I'm a little more laid back in my 30s, and enjoy a beer every now and then. I drink when we go out to dinner, and occasionally in the evenings during the week.

Does that make me a bad mom, less of a christian woman, a poor example of togetherness, obedience, or Godliness?

There's definitely a stigma. Some will not agree with me. My Pastor, who I respect very much, does not drink. The Bible tells us to be sober and aware. For any of you that have known me long at all, know my faith is important to me.

Is drinking hypocritical? Is one beer too much? Two beers?

Can I have a beer, and still be obedient?

What if I'm holding a cold one when Jesus comes? No joke!

I don't know the answer. I know many would say, No., it's not OK. Some would say it's fine.

What's your take? Does your faith play a part in your stance on this?

Shell at Things I Can't Say wrote a hilarious post about her recycling bin last week and Natalie at Mommy of a Monster chimed with her Two Cents. Check out their posts too.

I felt the timing was right for me to bring up here too.

I'm a devoted christian woman, mother of two, and homeschooling mama.

I like cold beer.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Do you have children in college? Enter to win!

I was recently contacted by, and asked to share information about their textbook rental site and their 2011 Making a Difference Project, Operation Smile! Once I took a look, I knew it was something I'd be happy to share with all of you.

I have a niece who recently went off to college. So proud of her!

College expenses are no joke! I already wonder if the college funds we have set up for our boys will be enough.

Saving money wherever possible is important to any parent or student. offers a great solution! Textbook rentals! Genius! Not only is the idea cost effective, it's also green. Love it! You have to check out this You Tube video and see how it works.

Sounds like a fabulous program, does it not?

After researching the website I also learned that donates a portion of every book rental to Operation Smile, an organization that provides life changing cleft lip surgeries to children whose families would otherwise not be able to afford it. They have a 2011 goal to change 1,000 lives with this program!

I think that's awesome!

So, I'm happy to spread the word about this book rental program and their goal to change lives through Operation Smile. To help them spread the word, I have agreed to partner with them by giving away a textbook rental discount.

One winner will receive 50% off their textbooks for the semester to use for yourself, your child, or a loved one!

Mandatory Entry:
*Visit and come back to tell me what you like about this website and program.

Additional Entries:
Leave a separate comment for each entry. Tweets and FB posts can be done once daily to increase your chances.
*Follow Campus Book Rentals on Twitter: @textbookrentals
*Like Campus Book Rentals on Facebook.
*Follow Stories from the Shoebox with GFC (sidebar).
*Follow me on Twitter @adriennesfts.
*Like me on Facebook.
*Tweet about the giveaway using "Save on textbooks with @adriennesfts and @textbookrentals! #win #giveaway #college" and leave me a link to your tweet.
*Post on about this contest on your FB page and leave me the link to your post.

Contest ends Oct. 2, 2001 @ 9pm Eastern. The winner will be selected using

*I was given the opportunity to give one reader a chance to receive a discount on textbooks in exchange for spreading the word about All opinions are 100% mine.
Giveaway Day

Veggie Tales-The Princess and the Popstar Review and Giveaway!

I love Veggie Tales!

It can be so hard to find DVDs and shows you actually want your kids to watch these days, it's so nice when we find something that makes the cut!

I was recently given the chance to do a review and giveaway for the new Veggie Tales movie, The Princess and the Popstar. Such a cute movie with a super message about being happy with being you!!

Check out this You Tube video about the movie.

Princess Poppyseed’s life on her family’s farm is far from the glamorous but lonely world of her favorite pop singer Vanna Banana. On a chance meeting at a playground, Vanna and Princess cross paths and realize that they look almost exactly alike—which leads to the crazy secret plan where they decide to switch lives! As each girl realizes that the life they longed for doesn’t fulfill all of their dreams, they learn that the life God gave them is the one for which they were uniquely and lovingly designed.

The DVD also features plenty of high-energy, fun music and bonus content, including the new song, “You Never Are,” written and performed by Francesca Battistelli, new silly song sing-alongs, and behind the music interviews among other extras.

One of you can win a copy of the DVD!

Mandatory Entries:
*Visit Veggie Tales online and leave a comment about what you like on their site. They have games, videos, activities, and more for your little one to enjoy!

Additional Entries:
*Follow Stories from the Shoebox with GCF
*Like my Facebook page
*Follow me on Twitter
*Tweet about the giveaway and leave me your twitter link.
"I want to #win this #veggietales DVD with @adriennesfts @veggietales #giveway".
*Post about this on FB and leave me a link to your post.
*Follow @veggietales on Twitter.

***Tweets and FB posts can be done once daily to increase your chances. Be sure to come back and comment for every tweet or FB post!!

Contest ends October 2, 2011 at 9pm Eastern time. The winner will be selected using

*I was given a complimentary copy of the DVD, The Princess and the Popstar, in exchange for my honest review of the product. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Giveaway Day

    Saturday, September 24, 2011

    My Happy List with Mamarazzi!

    Where did the week go??

    Since school started, I can't seem to find the time to do the things I love. Exercise, blogging, and reading have taken a back seat. I need to figure it out FAST because those things keep my children safe me from going nuts.

    In the meantime, I'd like to share some things that make me happy this weekend. Here's my HAPPY LIST with Mamarazzi!

    I'm HAPPY that we celebrated my son's 13th birthday last week. He is the best thing that ever happened to me and the most precious gift God could have ever given me. Motherhood! I'm so proud of him. Words cannot express how proud. He's an awesome kid! I cannot believe I have a teenager. 

    I'm HAPPY that even though I haven't had much time for me, I have been home with the boys busy with school, and I'm so thankful for that! Being able to be home with them and homeschool is such a blessing!

    My boo working hard on our reptile unit!

    We celebrated the first day of Fall with some Halloween math fun!

    I don't get many pics of my oldest during school. It totally distracts him. 
    But I swear he learns too. 

    I'm HAPPY that I cashed out my Social Sparks account for the first time, and it was super easy and fast! It was so awesome to see that money hit my paypal account! I'm saving for an iPad! If you want to make money blogging, this is a great way to do it! It's wonderful to recommend something I know works! I've blogged. I've been paid. NICE! Check it out!
    You blog. You Profit. Sign up for SocialSpark!

    I'm HAPPY that our women's Bible study started back up a couple of weeks ago. It's a lifeline for me, and I'm thrilled to get back into the Word with sweet sisters! We're doing Seeking a Heart Like His by Beth Moore. I'm sure it will be awesome. Her studies always are. 

    I'm HAPPY because I'm blessed with family. Even though we've had our differences and  still do from time to time. Family is family. Blogging has helped me appreciate the blessing of having family close by. So many of you are far from any family members, and I'm thankful I have family near home.

    My parents joined us for birthday dinner. It was so fun!

    Our family and my in laws over the summer. 
    What a blessing!

    And most of all. I'm HAPPY it's the weekend, and I'm HAPPY we live close to this...

    Last Sunday's cloudy sunrise. Still beautiful. 

    What makes you HAPPY?


    OH! And one more thing. I'm super HAPPY that the book sale at Scholastic I told you about last weekend saved me hundreds of dollars! Literally! And they have extended the sale through today!!! It's a must for homeschool moms and teachers. Check out the original post and the site HERE


    Tuesday, September 20, 2011

    Let's Talk About Sex...

    Guys, I know there's a few of you brave fellows out there. Feel free to stick around! Don't be scared. I'd love to hear your take too, but if you're uncomfortable with the estrogen levels today, come back tomorrow.

    Ladies. I wanna know. Are you making time for this? Do you have time to make?

    I love my man! I'm actually helplessly in love him, attracted to his every move, and want to be with him, yet still can't find the time to make this work lately.

    I'm completely overwhelmed all of a sudden with the demands of homeschool, therapy appointments, outside activities, groups, field trips, etc.

    Anxiety is rearing it's ugly head big time right now, and I'm just not myself. My head's all cloudy, and I'm off.

    But, I know my husband is in fact a man. He doesn't need his head to be clear of all the nonsense to snap to it. That's just the way they are. 

    After nearly 14 years together he just knows I'm not myself. He doesn't even really make a move if his mama-is-a-mess radar is going off. He gives me time and space. Thats' sweet. But, I still want to be there for him. It's not that I'm not in the mood. I'm just not in the mood after story time!

    Even though he's giving me space, I know deep down he needs me. 
    Hello? He is a man!

    It's important to me to make time for him.

    I never say no. I just don't. I don't want to. 

    Sometimes he just needs me.

    I will never turn him down.

    I feel like that's one of my loving roles of being his wife, even if I'm not in the mood.
    Call me old school, but he sure doesn't complain.

    I don't feel like it's a job. I want to please him. It's an act of love.
    Usually if I'm not in the mood he goes the extra mile. It's a partnership.

    So it's important to me to be there for him, yet I can't find the time or energy to put the moves on my man...

    Is anybody with me?

    Chime in!

    Sunday, September 18, 2011


    I never post about coupons anymore. Funny. That's how this whole blog thing happened to me to begin with. But this deal is too good to NOT share. Check it out!!

    I'm so excited! My SIL shared this link with me on my personal FB page. It's a must for teachers and homeschool mamas!

    Scholastic $1 Days! Downloadable books for just $1, BUT...

    This coupon code (below) is for $10 off, SO 10 FREE downloadable books!!

    Scholastic Dollar Days

    Coupon code!!! 

    *I'm not being paid or compensated in any way. This is not a review of any scholastic products. I'm just excited! It's a must share event, that is soon to expire!

    Saturday, September 17, 2011

    Are you a jeans girl?

    This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Express for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

    Visit Express jeans on Facebook to see the latest trends in women's jeans!
    Express giveaway

    If I had a uniform it would be jeans! I live in them! Jeans and some kind of t-shirt. All day, everyday!

    Express has a wide selection from boot cut to flare(My personal favorite!) Express has every style you could think of. Like them on Facebook and get update on promotions and savings!

    I have never been able to pull off a skinny jean. I think I'm too short. When I've tried they certainly don't look like this.
    How about red jeans? Would you rock these?
    What about white jeans? Are you a fashionista who isn't afraid to rock these with an awesome pair of shoes?
    I'm a traditional kind of girl so I stick with dark flare most days. How about you?

    Do you struggle finding jeans that fit? Do you get overwhelmed with all the choices out there? Express jeans makes it easy to find a pair to flatter!
    Leave me a comment and tell me what kind of jeans you prefer and why. Thanks ladies! :)
    Visit Sponsor's Site

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    What would you do with a few extra dollars?
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    Friday, September 16, 2011

    This week's {not so life changing} Life Lessons

    Today I'm linking up with my bloggy friends at Life's recipes and Life with Baby Donut to share a little {and I mean a little} of what I learned this week. I really wished I'd learned more. haha 

    1. I've learned I may need to try a different happy pill. The start of school, activities, and demands of motherhood have put my anxiety level through the roof up again. Bummer. Oh well, back to the Dr. to see if there's anything different I can take, because right now I don't feel like I'm taking anything! I know I'm a  better mommy when I'm fully equipped, and I'm not taking any chances with this again. I know I do not want to fall prey to this battle, so I'm going to keep fighting it. Remember: There's strength in admitting weakness!

    2. I've learned that things don't always go as planned, and that unplanned mess can turn out to be so much better!

    3. I've learned that I need to make sure I prepare all the necessary materials for school the night before, because gathering things up the day of is causing my little guy to get off track. I got some special bins to place all needed supplies for experiments and crafts in a weekly bin! That way it will be right there when I need it.

    4. I've learned hovering over my boys while they work doesn't help them work any faster, and in fact if I just walk away, they get more done. I'm also not right there for them to ask me 400 questions, and they can be a lot more independent than I allow them.

    5. I've learned I can train my kids to cook for me! My 6 year old made a meatloaf better than mine on Wednesday night. He made this 100% by himself!

    6. You can win people over. I've totally made friends with that receptionist I told you about. She dropped the S*** word today at therapy. GEESH, Lady! But, she quickly covered her mouth and smiled at me. She said, "I'm so sorry, I have to work on that!" She's very friendly now, and clearly has a bad habit of being unprofessional, but all it took was me caring enough to call her out on it. She was very sincere in her apology, and actually joked about getting a swear jar for her desk, and all the money would go to me. I might have found a way to make money from home after all.

    Life With Baby Donut

    Wednesday, September 14, 2011

    Shifting my expectations

    Be sure to check out my Magic Moments I posted late yesterday! Shell's keeping me busy. Today I'm back at her place for Pour Your Heart Out.
    This is our third year homeschooling. Our year is off to a great start. I'd have to say that the start of this year is going smoother than any other in the past. I know a huge part of the reason why things are different, is because I've adjusted my expectations.

    I've stopped requiring my son to be somebody he's not. I've stopped expecting him to do things he's not able to do. I've stopped focusing on my expectations for him, and tried to focus on God's expectations.

    It's so hard to break away from what the world tells us we need to expect from our children. When you have a child with special needs, they aren't the average kid. They don't fit that mold the world puts them in. They have different needs, and see things completely different than the rest of the world. I think that's a lonely place to be for a child.

    So I vowed to make sure my son never feels that way here.

    Some days are harder than others, and he isn't able to complete his assignments. Some days we have to stop and regroup. When these things happen, time isn't on our side. I still have to make sure he is receiving a solid education and meeting standards. It can be a lot of pressure on me to make it all work.

    But, something that I've realized is that I needed to shift my expectations. Not lower them! I have high expectations for both of my boys. I just mean adjust them. Adjust them to be obtainable.

    If he wants to stand and work-fine.
    If he wants to tap his pencil all day long-fine.
    If he needs a break after only getting one math problem done-fine.
    If he needs a day to regroup, and work on Saturday instead-fine.
    If he needs extra time in the morning to get it together, and work late-fine.

    Some days it's not about the book work. Maybe the day is successful because of a breakthrough in therapy, or a milestone achieved. Maybe on that day, he didn't even crack a book. FINE!

    I have to be flexible. He needs me to be flexible.
    I don't understand all of his quirks, but I do know that he needs me to understand him.

    Some might say that he gets his way, and doesn't ever learn to follow the rules. I would say he's getting exactly what he needs! We have rules, we have structure, we have requirements. But some days he needs me to understand that he's off. Period.

    Until the rest of world gets him. He will have a soft place to land here.


    Tuesday, September 13, 2011

    My Magic Moments

    Shell over at Things I Can't Say is giving all of us the perfect chance to share our magic moments that have been captured on camera. I realize how blessed I am when I search through some of my faves to share with you. God is so good!

    Many magic moments are brief. They last only a second, and it's all I can do to click the camera button on my Blackberry to catch them. Most of the shots are blurred. So true of magic moments.

    Let's go ahead and get this one out of the way. 
    THE magic moment...
    Our wedding day
    I'm still madly in love. 

    But then there's those moments you capture of ordinary blessings in life. 
    The flashes in your memory bank that last a lifetime.

    Like an apple pie. 

    ...or the chance to see my boys do actually love each other. 

    Or a glimpse of time I stopped to watch my baby sleep...

    A smile only homemade french toast could bring...

    An early morning kiss goodbye before work. 

    Next on the list are those times you just have to be still...

    ...and freeze something like this in your mind forever. 
    A peaceful walk on the beach. 

    A rainbow so beautiful it takes your breathe away. 

    And finally, there's those magic moments that you get alone. 
    My new personal favorite. 

    Time alone to get a grip on me.
    Time to think, read, pray, and just be. 

    Coffee and God's word on the back porch in the early morning. 

    A great novel on the beach with my feet in the sand. 

    A good long run on the elliptical. 
    Yes, I read then too sometimes. Love that Kindle!

    A candlelit bath, a good book, and some piece and quiet.

    Those are just a few of the magic moments in my life. 
    The everyday moments we often  take for granted. 

    What makes a moment magical for you? Link up here to share your pics!

    Go to Things I Can't Say for more info on the linky event, and fabulous prizes!!

    Monday, September 12, 2011

    Stepping Out of My Comfort Zone

    Over the weekend I attended a Beth Moore simulcast event. It was amazing!
    I was really nervous to go, because I was going to the event at a church near our new home, where I knew no one. Well, I knew my aunt. She's the one who invited me, but still. I knew she would probably be busy hosting and helping, as she is on the women's ministry team. As the day crept up, I was surprisingly nervous.

    I'm not as social as I used to be. I'm quieter. I'm not shy by any means, but walking into a huge event where I really don't know anyone was a bit out of my comfort zone. Because it was a simulcast this event was live at several locations around the world, and was also being broadcast from the church I usually attend. So, I naturally felt a little angst about not being with a few dear friends and familiar faces.

    But, I also know that if I constantly stay in my comfort zone I will miss out on the plans God has for me.

    I knew in my heart that the event wasn't about me meeting anyone, but about drawing closer to my savior, Jesus! If I had the added blessing of meeting a new friend than-wonderful!

    The day ended up being a huge blessing, a chance to meet with Jesus while surrounded with sisters in Christ. I realized as soon as I got there, that I do know these ladies. We are sisters, even if I've never met them.

    It was an amazing day. I was able to reconnect with my aunt, and meet some new people, and even a fellow homeschooling mom.

    Step out of your comfort zone! You never know what God has planned for you outside of it!

    Thursday, September 8, 2011

    Writer's Workshop: If I was a hoarder...

    If I was a I was a hoarder, I would hoard books.

    If I was a hoarder I might have books everywhere. Books for me, books for the kids, books for school, books on being a better me, books on raising better kids, books on teaching the kids, books to teach the kids, bible studies, textbooks, workbooks, I might even have books I've picked for hubs, who doesn't even read...

    If I was hoarder.

    If I was a book hoarder I might check out dozens of books from the library every week, even though I have a ton at home. I might have even recently posted about scoring on 23 used books from the most amazing used book sale ever.

    If I was a hoarder, maybe it would be books?

    I might have books for ever occasion, mood, and genre.

    I might stash books in my kids rooms, in cute little baskets in the living room, or maybe I would have a designated area for shoes books in my closet?

    If I was a hoarder I might save books in organized bins in my garage forever to sell on Ebay.

    But, I'm now wondering if positive I'm not a hoarder because I'm taking this to the library today to donate.

    LIE: Disclaimer: I did not pack this bag to prove to myself I'm not a book hoarder.

    So if you were a hoarder what would you hoard? Ya know, hypothetically.
    Mama’s Losin’ It
    Linked up with Mama Kat's writer's Workshop today!

    Monday, September 5, 2011

    My kid's privacy

    A while back I wrote a post on questioning when we share too much about ourselves, our children, or our family.

    I still don't have all the answers. But, I have put a lot of thought into it.

    I've limited the details of my son's journey with OCD, and I've refrained from sharing much more of than I already had. I will tell you he's made tremendous progress since early summer, and I couldn't be more proud of him. He's beating this thing hands down!!

    God is good, and He has continued to keep His arms around our family through the last few months. There were times when it was pure hell. But, we on the road to recovery! In fact, we are in recovery! It's just a matter of continuing to educate ourselves, and our son, and continue with the treatment and therapy we've been working on.

    Some of you might say that I have a right to write whatever I want. That I should share our stories about battling OCD because it may help someone else. But, the truth is, since I wrote that post, I've talked to my oldest about how he feels about me sharing some of his story on here.

    He was dead set against it. I respect that. It's his story to share. He should be able to do it when he's ready, on his own terms, in his own space. Later on he agreed to let me share certain things after he has a chance to read the post. I will actually even let him read this post before I hit publish.

    He's a young man, and should be treated as such. If I don't treat him with respect, how can I expect him to respect me or even himself? He's his own person, and I never want to invade his privacy. I know there's so many things I want to write about our journey, but it will be something I do with his blessing. Maybe in the future, it's even something we can do together.

    In the meantime, I will respect my kid's privacy.

    (There was a gorgeous picture of the back of his head here that didn't make the cut. "Mom! You can totally tell who I am!")

    Sunday, September 4, 2011

    Sometimes the Kindle looses.

    Dear Kindle,
    Due to the most amazing used book sale at my local library, we will have to part ways for a little while. Don't worry I'll be back. As wonderful as I think you are (and you know I love you!), I just cannot resist this...

    I got 23 books for $12.50!
    I forgot to include the book I'm reading now, 
    Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinsky, in the pic.

    My yoga class was canceled on Saturday morning, and I needed to get some kind of peace and quiet. So, I decided to head to the library. Alone! What could be more quiet than the library? I've become quite accustomed to my Saturday morning me time, and needed to fill in that space with something. Little did I know it would be the best shopping trip I've had in months. 

    I didn't have to try on any clothes, and I only spent $12.50!

    The book sale was filled with best sellers, in brand new condition for pennies! SCORE! I was seriously sucked into the vortex of being a huge nerd at heart, and loaded up! My husband, who doesn't read at all was cracking up when I got home with three bags of used books. 

    I kissed my Kindle goodbye, and placed her on the shelf. She'll be on vacation for awhile. 

    As much as I love that thing. It cannot compete with the character of a cheap used book. I am a huge fan of the whole e-book movement. I am a proud owner of THE best gift hubs ever got me! But sometimes I miss the feel of a book, the story within the pages that are written. I wonder who's read it, where it's been, did the pages have tear stains in the same place I left them? Did the last person to hold the book laugh at the same jokes or appreciate the same well written line? 

    And...the most significant way the Kindle cannot compete?
    I can lend these books to a friend or give them away to someone else.

    Sometimes, the Kindle looses. 

    Upromise Celebrates its 10th Anniversary!

    This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of UPromise for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

    UPromise_Brand_300x250_static.jpg (3 documents)

    Upromise is celebrating its 10th Anniversary by giving away $20,000 to users who share a story that tells how a parent has supported a child's dream! Upromise members have received more than $600 million in college savings through their rewards program, and it wants to celebrate all of the ways it has helped to fuel those sparks that made children into the people that are today and the adults they will become tomorrow. 

    Users can participate in the sweepstakes by submitting a story, and can vote on their favorite stories by "liking" them. Upromise will give away $1,000 to 10 winners and a grand prize winner for $10,000 will be selected from the participants as well.

    Join the movement! Share your experiences and fuel the flame of your child's future!
    I shared my dream!

      Our oldest son is one of the most intelligent people I know, and has an amazing sense of humor. I pray that his talents become a major part of his path in life. He's started his year with zeal, and I know that a bright and successful future is ahead. We want him to be happy and successful in whatever path he chooses. We know it will be amazing!
    Our youngest is a natural born leader and business shark! He comes handmade by a great God to take this world by storm, and we are so excited to see him grow.
    Above all we want our boys to love God with all of their hearts, soul, and mind. If they stay close to Him their education, and future will be more than we could ever ask or imagine!  
    What's your dream for your kids? Share it here!

    Visit Sponsor's Site