About Me

My photo
Indiana, United States
I'm a mother of five of my own children, very blessed adoptive mommy to one, step mother to three! Married to a wonderful man who forgives ALOT! Grammy to 6!I also have the best "kids in law" that I could have! I am blessed to be able to baby sit for our grandchildren a few days a week. I am blessed to be able to NOW stay home full time to take care of our home, children, and grandchildren!!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Strangely True Story...Or..."It Would Only Happen to Me."

Friday evening, Israel and I were on our way home from the beautiful western part of Indiana's Amish area. We had tried to go to a quaint little out of the way Amish market where we buy a lot of dry goods but they had just closed. Hmmm...if we had just been a few minutes earlier...or if they had JUST stayed open a little while longer, the "strange but true" story would never have happened....or at least...not to US.

I love making the trip to that area...seeing the beautiful scenery and the homes and carts of the Amish. I really am interested in their lifestyle so I always consider it an adventure! I had never been there in the winter months and it still held the same fascination to me. So when I drove up to the market and realized that they had closed just fifteen minutes earlier, I wasn't really disheartened. After all, Israel and I had enjoyed the trip and we had talked and talked....everything from Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformation to Martin Luther King. (Heavy stuff for a six year old, right?)

Anyway, it had been a long, somewhat snowy drive and we were finally headed home...a different and more "direct way this time, through the little towns nearby and over to the "Main Road." We had decided that, as soon as we could, we would need to stop and take a "potty" break...and maybe grab a much needed snack. (After all. we HAD missed out on the Amish Woopie Pies, homemade bread and candy, right?)

Happily, we drove up to a little nondescript gas station on the side of the road in nowhere, Indiana.  This was the kind of place that they look at you oddly when you walk in...we were strangers....a chubby white lady, driving a beautiful Ford Flex...with the undeniable imprint of a dead deer in the side, holding the hand of an African little boy....decidedly not from that area. Yeah, we looked strange. Can you say...an "easy mark...a push over...a sap...a schmuck?"

So, there we were, potty break taken, Butterfinger bar chosen, KitKat ready to be devoured, heading to the cashier, when I turned and there was this lady holding the very embodiment of allurement, fascination.....enchantment in her very hands.......a sweet, precious, little black puppy.

"Awww...." I smiled, feeling my heart melting all over my shoes...."Can we pet it?"

"Sure!" she eagerly...possibly TOO eagerly... said. (Does this remind you somewhat of "The Twilight Zone?")

"This is exactly the kind of puppy my husband has wanted." I divulged. (Beth should learn not to talk so much...) I rubbed my hands over the silky little black head and relished the little pink tongue flickering out to lick my fingers...

The lady took one look at me...then over to Israel....HANDED HIM THE LEASH....and said,

"HERE, SHE'S ALL YOURS!"  she declared emphatically!!

"Oh my goodness, oh my goodness, oh my goodness..." I kept saying in a stupor...while the life that I then knew flashed before my eyes....

I was thinking, "What do I do? What will Israel do if I don't? What will my HUSBAND do if I DO...???"

During the temporary loss of my senses, I vaguely remember whispering a feeble "ok"...then, in somewhat of a rush, as she made for the exit, the lady said, "She hasn't had any shots and she still pees in the house..." and she disappeared out the door.

So, there you go. We have a puppy....or more exactly, she has US. Her name is "Annie"....as in "Indi-Annie"....I survived my husband's...ummmm.....uuhhhh..........how do you say...........well....I survived.

Thursday, January 24, 2013


I just posted on my facebook page that the punishment for loving my new Ford Flex way too much was a deer at 50 miles an hour. Yep. It happened about three hours ago. The driver's side doors are probably going to have to be replaced as well as the side mirror. It was horrible seeing that poor little deer....

But God protected Becca, Israel, and myself. If the deer had hit just a few inches higher, it would have gone through the window and probably have killed at least me.

God is good. Very Good...and I am exhausted right now.....Vegetable soup is on the stove and dirty dishes are still in the sink...they may have to wait...


Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Once Upon a Time Five Years Ago.....

Once upon a time, five years ago, there was a couple with a very large NEWLY blended family. The somewhat crazy lady of the couple had been praying and thinking about adoption for a very long time but was very hesitant to suggest this crazy notion to her new husband. After all....they were dealing with 8 children in their newly blended family, some married already. When she finally decided it was time to approach Mr. Wonderful with the idea, she was thrilled beyond belief that he also had been thinking and praying about adoption! God had been at work in BOTH of their hearts. So, the journey began.

First, there was a family vacation.....and if they had judged from "the not so wonderful family vacation taking so many blended family children on vacation at one time".....they would have discarded the idea of adoption immediately. But God triumphed....and in a little tshirt shop, the crazy lady decided to buy a tshirt for their "Not yet adopted child so he would know how long and how badly he was wanted."

So....there it is. Israel and his Florida Tshirt purchased almost five years ago. I think it fits him to a "T"...don't you???


Saturday, January 19, 2013

Busy Saturday!!

What a busy day we have had! We started out kinda lazy but then realized that Becca's homeschool friend's party was just an hour away and we had to HURRY!
We all jumped into the (still clean!!) car and drove for 45 minutes or so and dropped her off, then dropped off LOTS of stuff at Goodwill (NO, I didn't stop to SHOP there!! Amazing, huh??? It CAN be Done...)
Then off to Costco we went. That has become our fun place to go on Saturdays with just me, Roger, and Israel. Israel loves the trial samples they give out all the time! We only needed a few things but it is still fun to do! While there, I found LOTS of BIG pieces of cardboard in their trash. I didn't actually dumpster dive THIS time...they were in the bin for the boxes you take your items home in. Anyway, They are about 4'X4' and will be perfect for my new gardening project! I'm using them to line the bottom of my raised beds and then adding new soil/much/cow manure on top. That's how some of the gardening sites are recommending it to be done so I thought I'd give it a try!

Israel was teasing me as I was dragging those big cardboard pieces out of the trash and said, "These boxes aren't GOLD, you know!" (He must have judged from my frenzy in getting all those huge pieces of cardboard in our shopping cart that I was pretty dog gone excited about them!!)
I told him that when he tastes all that wonderful produce that our garden puts out this year, he'll think they were better than gold.
He just laughed....I don't think I convinced him very well. After all, there are no "hamburger or steak" seeds that are going to be growing in that garden....the little kid LOVES meat!!

So right now, I'm canning chicken breasts. Yum yum!! I've canned chicken, ground beef, and vegetable soup so far. I found bone in chicken breasts for .88 cents a pound this past week! WOW!!! I also got hamburger on clearance sale and I bought a big ham for something like .63 cents a pound...already cooked. We're gonna be doing a LOT of canning this next week....I'm planning to can soup beans and ham!! I think I'm also going to can chicken broth. We waste so much of the things we buy...like chicken stock once you've cooked the chicken. I've frozen it before but I think canning it will be much better.

I'm having a good time learning different ways to save money. After all, I've got to figure out some way to "save" all that money I spent on my new pressure canner!!

Blessings to you!

Friday, January 18, 2013


I can't believe that it has been six months since we drove to Wisconsin (5 miles from Canada) to pick up our little Israel. HALF A YEAR! Wow...so much has changed in six months. So much has changed in a year! One year ago this month, he left his prior adoption placement to live in a foster home. We first heard about him a month or two later. I was in the depths of despair, really thinking that maybe God was leading me on and that we would never find THE CHILD that we were supposed to adopt. Then God made it clear that Israel was our little boy.

Later, when we said YES to the adoption agency...and they said YES to us....our attorney told us..."No."

He told us that most likely we would never be able to adopt him legally due to some issues between the two states involved. Again we were saddened but we KNEW that God was giving us the go ahead....and we pressed on. "THIS IS OUR CHILD!" I emphatically told our attorney. I was getting the impression that he was asking us to just find another orphan but ISRAEL was THE ONE....I knew it!! It was all figured out...it never turns out the way we think it is going to but it turned out pretty well! (Probably better than if it had turned out the way I had it planned to!)

All in all...after the months of uncertainty (is ANY adoption really an easy thing, after all??) he finally came home. I was scared, I'm sure Roger was, and little Israel had to be the most nervous of all.

We've had some rough times, surrounded by some marvelous moments and days...and it has been wonderful!

To see the changes in this little boy is amazing....to watch his uncertainty and his fears disappear little by little...to notice his "play" time becoming more and more mild and "sweet"....to WATCH THIS KID EAT AND OUTGROW his clothes!!! Good Grief!! We need to go buy some more jeans...I just bought him some two months ago....

God is good. I am amazed at this marvelous journey that our even MORE marvelous God has started us on. I am humbled and thrilled that...with all my perfections (and I have PLENTY)...He has chosen ME to be the Mother of this little special boy.....

Blessings to you and your home,
Beth...by Grace.....

Thursday, January 17, 2013


Yep, I'm pushing it a bit but I have already purchased some of our garden seed for the Spring! I built two small raised beds in the late fall and I'm planning to make some more gardening space this Spring. I'm not sure I can really put more money into the wood for the raised beds so that part may have to wait. I don't want to go without enough garden just because I prefer the raised bed look!

Here he is...Mr. Cutie Pie! Israel really enjoyed his first Christmas with us and he was thrilled with his remote control car...he was so surprised by it! He had accidentally found a remote control vehicle that I had bought at Goodwill and he thought that was what he was getting. He was very happy with it and was just shocked that I had purchased a new one as well!! The hat was a Christmas gift from big sister Becca. He loves it as well and has worn it to church....

We spent some days right after Christmas in Nashville visiting our good friend Joe. He took us to the Opryland Hotel to walk around. IT WAS AMAZING!! There were waterfalls and streams running all though it! These two pictures were taken inside the hotel! (Me and Israel)

Daddy Roger and Israel....I'm not sure what the facial expressions indicate......you can think whatever you want to...I think maybe they were sick of posing....and why were they leaning??????

This is the front of the hotel...there were beautiful white Nativity figures all over the front yards! (I think they were life size or larger...)

Guess what? We bought a new to us car! It's a blue Ford Flex and she is gorgeous. It's almost a sin how much I like this new vehicle. I've been driving a car that even the gas gage didn't work anymore and the electrical always had issues. The back wiper motor was broken and so were the window motors.  I appreciate it so much. It has to truly be a gift from God. It's exactly what I would have picked out if I could have ordered it. We were on our way (hours before we left for Nashville...none of our other vehicles would make it that far...) to buy a different van and we came across the Flex. I have promised to keep her very clean and nice. Her name is Miss Denim. She loves me.....
I called Roger one day and told him that I know it is difficult to believe but the car likes me more than she likes him. He asked how I knew that...I told him, when I walk toward the car, she keeps flashing her sparkly eyes at me and blinking. He said, "BETH, are you pushing her buttons?"
I said, "Yes, I am...however, when YOU tell me that I am pushing YOUR buttons, you don't wink at ME!!"

Yep...she likes me best. She even talks to us (really....there is a voice control thingy on it! And I thought my 1997 Ford Econoline Homeschool van was nice!!!)  Now if I can just figure out how to change her "voice" to a wonderful male English accent or a sweet southern drawl......then the car would be named Mr. Denim....and I don't think Roger would mind a BIT if He like ME best.......


Sunday, January 13, 2013

Good grief....I can't believe its been nearly a month since I've blogged....We had a wonderful Christmas...Israel's first Christmas with us!!
I've been spending a LOT of time thinking and planning our little "homestead" here in Indiana. I mean, I'm working on planning our garden and thinking where we'll put our chickens, etc.
Believe it or not, I have already bought some vegetable seeds! Then, I ordered a pressure canner from Walmart, bought some really cute canning lids on clearnance, and a new canning book! I have lots of cans already. Some from years ago and some I have purchased at Goodwill or Salvation Army.

I've already put my canner to use. It was kind of scary but it all turned out ok! I remember my mother used to can all the time and she always scared me to death by telling me to stay away from the canner in case it exploded! Geesh!!!! No wonder I have waited all this time before trying it out!!

My first effort at pressure canning has been...believe it or not...canning ground beef and onions. Yeah, it's kinda weird, who'da thunk of canning hamburger?? But, really it is quite handy to have it ready to go. I got a BUNCH on clearance sale at the grocery store and THEN I came upon chicken breasts for $1.71 a pound! (Or something like that...pretty cheap....) So, I decided to try to can them and I did! One of the quarts of chicken did not seal so I immediately put it in the refrigerator. I'm going to try again tomorrow....I'm canning "Vegetable soup starters" and I will just use the chicken in the vegetable soup. I have LOTS and LOTS of cabbage that I bought for 25 and 33 cents a pound and I'm planning to add veggies to it until I have a nice "starter" to vegetable soup. How nice it will be when I just open a can or two, add some left over vegetables to it and have a healthful and inexpensive meal for us!

I'm trying to get used to living on less before we actually HAVE to...in two years, our income will be cut in half when our blended family of children no longer receive child support or social security. That's a big reason we decided to sell the "Big Fancy House In Town..." (And because we wanted to adopt!!)

I think it's kinda fun, actually...living frugally. It's almost like a game that I plan to win. "Let's see how much money I DON'T spend at the grocery store or department store...."

I got some awesome denim skirts at Goodwill for myself the other day! (I'm a skirt lady....) I was just thinking that I wished I had a skirt that would match my new fancy $13 shirt from Walmart and low and behold....there they were! Soooo cute and chunky....like me!! Well, I didn't mean I was CUTE...I meant that I was CHUNKY....these skirts would probably have been at least $35 new...and they are LIKE NEW!! WooHoo!!!! God really blessed me with these!!

I made my newly married daughter, Marci....and her hubby, Ben....a rag quilt for Christmas and shipped it to Seattle. She cried....I think she likes it. I'm going to try to do some more of that in the coming year. Rag quilting, I mean....not making my Marci cry......Geesh....I have lots of fabric and I bought some more....on clearance of course...at Hobby Lobby last week. Hopefully I can get my little sewing machine to work well and then I'm gonna get sewing!

I did some Christmas shopping yesterday...for next year....

I'm a sicko. I admit it. But the deals were incredible!!!!!!!!!!  I got the four littlest grandsons matching pajamas and camo fleece pants. SOOO cute! I got our little grand daughter a night gown and an outfit. I also got chunky little Parker an Old Navy outfit....SOOOO CUTE!! (Parker, I mean....but also his new outfit.)  I also got them some stocking stuffers. The problem is.....where to store them all while I wait until next Christmas. (Because I didn't stop there....I got probably 12 jar candles for the ladies for Christmas and some cute critters for all the kids for Valentine's day. ) Roger doesn't know all about them....so don't tell him yet...Ok??? He doesn't need to know about the depth of my "sicko-ness".  One of these days....he will thank me....yeah. I keep telling myself that.......:) He'll find out soon enough......

Blessings to you all!