Monday, December 31, 2012


"Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you."        Jeremiah 29:12

Since I started this blog back in August my purpose has completely changed. What started out as something that maybe I could make money off of down the road has now been transformed into something that will glorify God. Blog ads and making money has been a complete second thought and I really don't have a desire to pursue that route now.

God laid this on my heart and this is how I want to start 2013 on this blog.

At the beginning of each month I will do a prayer post. This will be a short post with a few scriptures that will encourage up to pray. Once this gets bigger I would love to share a story each month about an answered prayer.

Now the fun part...YOU!! I would like for you, in the comments below, leave a way we can pray for you. A specific prayer request, a general area you need help in, a family member, etc.

YOU name it, WE take it to God.

If you are not comfortable with you name being on there then post it as anonymous. You can be as vague or as detailed as you like.

Then I want you to go through the comments and pray for someone specifically. If you have time to pray for them all, fantastic, if not just pick one or two and come back another day to pray for another. If you feel led, leave a comment on that persons request letting them know you are praying for them.

There are times when we are in a difficult situation that we don't want our family, friends or neighbors knowing about but we really need the prayer so use this Pray Post without fear of judgement or humiliation.

As brothers and sisters in Christ we are to lift one another up in prayer!

Who's ready to start 2013 surrounded in prayer?!?! ME ME ME!!!

"In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy"
Philippians 1:4


***Any negative comments are not needed and unwanted, if you have something negative to say...keep your mouth shut and have a good day***

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Christmas Review

I sure hope each and everyone of you had a wonderful Christmas. Mine was fantastic and filled with family, food and friends. I try to have all my shopping completed at least a week before Christmas so that those last few days leading up to it an be focused on spending quality time with my little ones and teaching them the true meaning of Christmas.

This year I am proud to say we have given more than we ever have before. Maybe not so much from a financial stand point but giving isn't about the money you spend on a gift or how much you dropped in the bucket but it's about doing it from your heart and giving your time.

I'd like to share a short story with you.

The Wednesday night before Christmas I was planning a fun filled Mommy/Son day on Thursday. It had been a long time since just him and I spent any time alone together so I was planning on sending Lanie bug to the sitter and taking my little man out for the day. While planning all the fun activities we were going to do I also one to do another act of kindness for someone. Just show one more child the love of God by buying them a present. I prayed that God would send me a child to bless...boy did he answer and within a few hours he sent me 4 children!! WHOA God...I'm not made of money! I knew, however, that God didn't drop these children in my lap for no reason so I reached out. I sent a short text to about 15 family members and friends. I knew it was close to Christmas and like me, most people had probably already met their budget for the month but I though if I could just come up with $200 then each children could get one outfit and one toy.

Within 2 1/2hours I had $445!

I was blown away, my friends and family went above and beyond what I could have even imagined and just as HE said he would, he provided. God doesn't ask us to do things without providing the means to do it. We just have to push forward and trust Him.

After our fun day at Wonderworks, little man and I went shopping for the 4 kiddos and got them each 4 outfits, a jacket, a toy, some stocking stuffers and most importantly a Bible.

God uses each and everyone of us and when we pray that He will lead us to do His will he will never lead us off course. Just be sure when you pray for something you are ready to move because you never know what he has in store. Shopping for those kids were my Christmas blessing and on Christmas morning while I was watching my little boogers rip in to each and every gift with excitement I couldn't help but think of those 4 little ones that God answered my prayer with. I knew that at those moments too they were ripping into the gifts that we, as a family in Christ, had gotten them.


I'm so blessed to be surrounded with such loving and giving people!

My Christmas was more than blessed. As I prepare for 2013 I pray that God has big plans for me and I hope that I will let him use me all for his glory! I can't wait to share with you all what I have in store!



Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Gift of Christmas

Well it's less than 2 weeks til Christmas day and I am officially ready! About 99% of my shopping is done, 80% of my wrapping is done and we start with all the family Christmas parties tomorrow! I absolutely love these last 10 or so days leading up to Christmas.

They are filled with so much cheer, giving, kindness(unless you are going after that last toy in which case the claws come out) but most of all love.

I have learned more these past two months about Christs' love than my whole 28yrs on earth. I have been on a mission of teaching my children to give and love others just at Christ does. He has opened the doors wide open for us and provided us with many opportunities to 'help' someone else or just to say "Thank You" more often.

I have also seen though how when you are being kind sometimes you get the feeling that you are being held back, that something is standing in your way or something is telling you that it's just not enough. I had a recent conversation with a lady where we talked about giving gifts to people and how she sometimes takes the tags off of things she buys. This is to keep the person on the receiving end of taking it back to (prob wal-mart) for money to use on other extra-ciriculars (putting it nicely). Never thought about this but it did make me think. We do stuff to shine Christs love on others. Sometimes its not always what the receiving party wants, but none the less it is out of the kindness of our hearts. If you are giving, and it doesn't matter whether it is money, gifts, food or anything else that is helping, you are doing your party to show Christ in you to others. Even if it might not be what they want, expect, or even need, you are shining your light a little brighter and Lord knows everyone needs a little light shown on them once in a while. Do not let 'others' who are not satisfied or do what you would like for them not to do discourage you from shining your light. Jesus didn't always please everyone but he did what God wanted him to do and he did it with a loving heart.

I had something said about me today that just absolutely melted my heart and touched me more than that person will ever know. She said "She gives as Christ would give. She loves as Christ would love". 

That is what I want people to say, that they see Christ in me, not that I am a good person or kind or loving because if they say that they see Christ in me then it means I am doing my job at bearing the fruits of the spirit. Praise God that he is allowing me to do work for Him!  
Please continue to shine your lights people, even if you only bless 1 person this season that is 1 less person going without a Christmas blessing and giving is the true gift of Christmas. It is the day that we, as Christians, received the most precious gift of all!

Here is some pictures for Our Christmas Angel and Elfie ~ Oh and they are offering FREE SHIPPING (that saves you $9) if you go order your Christmas Angel now! It's' never too late to start giving!

Elfie brought a "Thank You for being good" letter from Santa

Elfie is shaving while the Angel gathered stuff for us to donate to the Special Needs Adults in our Community

Elfie Shaving

Homemade candy making night with my girls resulted in Elfie getting into the bon bons
but the neighbors sure appreciated a few tasty treats!

Time to play well with our friends!
Now to show you how we have been spending our time leading up to Christmas with a few of our fave family traditions!

Our first year being in town for the Community Christmas Parade and it was a blast! The kids had so much fun!

Here they come!!!

The Christmas Season wouldn't be complete without a trip to Dollywood to see all the beautiful lights and who better to do it with than our best friends!

Bunch of lazy boys!

Poor Lanie bug surrounded by all these boys!

Watching the Musical Light Show!
I hope you all are getting ready for Christmas and having a wonderful holiday season!


Much Love,

Friday, December 7, 2012

Giving It All Away

My heart has been opened so much this past month that it is beyond words to even describe the feelings that I am having.

When I started the Month of Thanksgiving it didn't go as well as I had planned. Life just got in the way and all the plans I had of people to Give Thanks too didn't happen. I was sad that I had failed at the first big giving event I had planned to do but then I realized...maybe my plan wasn't God's plan. I prayed asking that he would show me who needed help and that he would give me the willingness to do it.

I have helped people before, done *NICE* stuff for others but there has been a difference. I did it because I was asked to not because I seen a need and decided to fulfill it. I did it because I wanted to but still there was that little feeling inside me that held back. Hoped for some acknowledgment, thanks, maybe something in return. So you know this is hard for me to type, it's hard to admit that I would selfishly do stuff for others. I know though that I am not alone in this. We all want to be willing but how do we do that? Well I want to share with you a few things.

The one thing I did that I hadn't done before was pray. Now I pray all the time but never specifically for giving. I prayed that God would show me who needed help, how I could best help them and then most of all lay it on my heart to do so unselfishly. Oh how he done that and even more! It is better to give than receive and now I am experiencing the true meaning of that. There has been a few times when God has laid it on my heart to do something for someone. Something they might not have even asked for but the reward of listening to his call has been amazing. He has used me as His Light, His messenger and I hope that with each step I take I am portraying a heart like Jesus.

I can honestly say that when I do something now I do not want any glory...I actually would like to do a lot of it without people even knowing where it came from. I give God all the glory because He is the one who has opened my eyes and made my heart be full of love for His people.

I played the lottery a few weeks ago, you know when it was like 500m, and for the whole day I just daydreamed of what I would do with all that money. It was the first time that my daydreams involved building walls and schools in Africa, helping the homeless here, purchasing homes for single mothers in need. I just kept seeing all these people I could help and would want to help. However I didn't win so they are going to have to settle for food, toys and prayer! ;)

Once God opens your heart to giving and you unselfishly give him the lead over it you will be amazed by how blessed you will be from doing for others. You will see through a new light and be touched by the smallest thing.

You have heard me talk much about David, my sponsor child in Africa. Well I had forgot that every year you can sponsor a family in Africa's Christmas dinner. Last year we bought one for a family. The meal included a chicken (alive), wheat, flour, mil, a loaf of bread, mangoes, pineapple, cake, onions, tomatoes, oranges, taters, bananas, and more.

All the families had their pictures taken with their meals and then they wrote a letter to the family who sponsored it. Yesterday I received a picture David had colored for me, some smaller pictures that he drew and then a letter from the family who received the Christmas basket we sponsored last year. Looking at those pictures and reading those letters just melted my heart. These people don't know me and I don't know them but they have been touched by how Jesus is using me to reach out to them. I do love them all and pray that these simple measures will speak Jesus name and honor him with each act I do.

Here are the pictures and letters that I received!

I can just see him setting there drawing this for us!

Him and his sister!

Oh He loves to Sing...he really was meant to be my sponsor child!

I hope that her year has brought so much joy to her!

If you would like to sponsor a child or just give one time for the Christmas baskets 2012 go here and get in contact with Cyndy Waters, the owner/operator of Orbit Village or go to the website to give! You will be blessed beyond measure!

Happy Friday Ya'll


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The Christmas Angel Days 1-4

It's 3 weeks til Christmas...3 weeks people!! Wow where does the time go? Here I thought I would be a week ahead since Thanksgiving seemed to be a week early this year but it just seems like I am further behind...oh well such is life!

The Christmas Angel and Elfie arrives at our home Saturday morning. Kinley was so excited to have Elfie back, Laniebug doesn't really pay much attention but hey she's only 16months old.

The Angel leaves her messages written in Gold Sharpie on black paper with the theme of the message in the gold dust! She's very nice is helping to keep the mess down as much as possible. I also love how she is getting Elfie involved in her actions of giving.

I will try to update every few days with what all they both have been up to! I can already see such a change in Kinley. He very willingly took snacks yesterday to his friends at school! I love seeing him have such a giving heart for others!

Day 1-  Eflie brought Snow Covered Donuts from the North Pole and The Christmas Angel brought a paper nativity set to go with her book and learning about the Birth of Jesus!

Our first message was to pack up a Christmas box for David, he is our sponsor child in Africa, you can read David's story here. I am so happy to see how after the first package we sent Kinley was so excited to fill a box full of candy, cloths and toys that David would like! I hope they get to meet one day!

Day 2- Elfie wasn't feeling well today so our message of giving was to make food for someone who is sick! So that's just what we did!!

Day 3-  Share snacks with our friends at School!

Day 4- Give Love, Give 5 friends hugs today! Simple yet so meaningful!

Follow me on Instagram @punkslilangel for the daily pictures of Our Christmas Angel and Elfie!

If you don't have one right now it's not too late to get your Christmas Angel and get this tradition started. You will be surprised how much it will change not only the way your children think of Christmas but the way you do as well! If you are in the Knoxville/Sevierville area email me at and I will hook you up with one and save ya some on shipping! If you are not in these areas you can order online here! Just be sure to let me know you ordered one!!

On a side note the hubs and I have been working viciously to get this toy room done and it is in the final stages of completion! Be looking for the Toy Room Overhaul post next week!

Merry Christmas Ya'll!!


Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Our Friends prepare to Arrive and a little more Thanks-Giving

I want to show you a little of what God showed me a couple weekends ago. As I have said I am trying to teach my kids to give. While we were shopping we stopped for a bathroom break. While I stood outside waiting on my mom to come out there was a girl standing in front of a store as for spare change for St. Judes Hospital. I took some money out of my wallet and gave it to my son and let him go put it in her basket. After a few minutes (we stood there about 10min b/c they were cleaning the bathroom) the girl said "You must be sick of hearing me" all I could say was "I'm surprised by how many people have said no".

She just smiled and nodded.

This got me thinking about how selfish we really are. Now, I'm not saying you should drop a dollar or two into every bucket you pass by this holiday season but what if you put a nickel in every bucket?
If you went to a different store everyday from now until Christmas that would put you going to 30 different stores. Take out 1 roll of nickels, 40 and you will have enough money to put 5cent in each time you go past a bucket.

I could not imagine the difference that would make if everyone would do this! I bet 50 people or more told her no while I was standing there. That could have been an extra couple dollars and that was just in 10min.

I encourage you to take a few rolls of nickels and give one to each of your family members and practice giving as a family.  Make it fun, see you can get rid of their nickels (without dumping them all out at once) before Christmas. It's amazing how children react to something when it's turned into a game and just remind them that the winners are the ones we are helping by showing Jesus' love to them.

Our Christmas Angel and Elf will be arriving at our home this weekend as we kick off the "Countdown To Christmas". I am excited to see how the Angel will help me remember each day that it is about Jesus and us giving to others in His name. It doesn't have to be money but maybe a toy, a hug or even a simple smile. I am also including a "letter" to the kiddos from Elfie ( I know original right?) telling them about his new friend this year. I think it will really help bring the two together in the kids minds.

Here is my version, feel free to copy it but if you post to your blog please just link back here!





~your friend ELFIE

A few other Acts of Giving we did over the past few weeks included providing a thanksgiving meal for a family, gave change to bell ringers, and started packing a new bag for our other child in Africa, David. I am so happy that Kinley got to help participate in each one of these acts. I can see him growing and learning each day what it is like to be a child of God.  Now to end you with a few pictures from the past couple weeks!

It just melted my heart to get these pictures from Cyndy Sunday morning. My other child, David, had received his "Welcome to our Family" package and she wanted to share the pictures with me. I just love this little boy so much already and I am hoping to continue to sponsor him and see him through college! You can read more about how David joined our family here
~We even got a smile from the so serious little boy~
So much love going his way!

Filling the back of my van to help a family in need this Thanksgiving! Praying God will use this food to comfort their hearts and give them some peace!


Monday, November 26, 2012

I'm Thankful for My Job

Once again readers so sorry for the delay but last week was one of the most mentally and physically exhausting weeks I have had in a while but the show must go on... :)

Happy Belated Thanksgiving Everyone! I am happy to have a friend and fellow bloggers guest posting on how she has "Paid It Forward" this month! She is also the brains and talent behind the beautiful design of my blog, oh and she shares this yummy recipe with you! Thank you Lauren and thank you for sharing!

Hello, Melanie's friends and readers! My name is Lauren, and I blog at Team Denton about my husband's and my newlywed adventures and our journey as Southerners living in and learning the Midwest. I'm excited to be sharing this little corner of the blogosphere with you and Melanie today.

I love Thanksgiving. I love having a day—and a season, really—with the primary focus on the people you love and life's little often-overlooked luxuries. All too often we get bogged down in the monotony of our everyday lives that we forget to appreciate these things, and it's nice to have a time devoted to stopping and remembering them.

About this time every year, I begin looking back at the year that has quickly passed by me and consider what events, what people, what perspectives have reminded me how incredibly blessed I am. Many come to my mind year after year: a supportive family that remains tight despite the miles between us, friends who share my thoughts and happy memories, a faith that saves me and empowers me to give to those with less, and a husband who laughs with me, encourages me and likes my cooking.

But this year, a new one came to mind, one that hasn't been relevant for any Thanksgiving prior: I'm thankful for a job. Doing what I love. In the industry I wanted. Using the degree I earned.

Few people my age (recent college graduate) can say the same. And at this time last year, I doubted if I would be able to. Six months after graduation and two and a half of living in Iowa with absolutely no professional network, I began to get discouraged—not because I was getting turned down left and right, but because there were a shortage of jobs to even get turned down for. No one in my field was hiring, and if they were, they wanted experience, not entry-level.

Nine months ago, that changed, and I began a part-time job as an Editorial Assistant (I write, edit, proofread, fact-check, brainstorm, etc) for a large publishing company with an impressive resume of national magazine brands. In short, it was the environment I'd wanted to work in since I was 13. So this year, not only am I incredibly thankful that I have a place to work when the economy has not been as kind to all, but I'm especially grateful that in my work, I get to use my skills and passions on a daily basis.

I wish that in paying it forward, I could end the job search for everyone on the hunt. Unfortunately, that's not in my scope. But what I can do is show my appreciation for some of those who helped me get the job and those who make it even more enjoyable: my coworkers. I'm also thankful for them because they are my connection to Iowa, a place I'm still not totally in sync with.

To show my thanks, I pulled a file from my mom's recipe box. I remembered these treats from a few Thanksgiving seasons when she gave them freely to those whom she appreciated.

Pumpkin Bread for Jars

2/3 cup shortening
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
2 cups pumpkin puree
2/3 cup water
3 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
2/3 cup nuts (optional)
8 or 9 wide mouth pint canning jars with lids and rings

Preheat oven to 325. Cream shortening and sugar. Beat in eggs, pumpkin and water. Sift together dry ingredients (except nuts) and gradually add to pumpkin mixture. Stir in nuts. Pour into greased jars, filling each only half full of batter. Clean the sealing edge of jars. Bake for about 45 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Meanwhile, scald the lids and keep them in water until ready to use. When the bread is done, remove jars, clean the sealing edge again, place lids on jars and screw rings on firmly. As bread cools, the jars will seal.

While the bread was baking, I used an extra lid to trace circles on some scrapbook paper, then placed each circle on top of a lid prior to screwing on a ring. I made the pumpkin cards out of scrapbook and brown kraft paper.

Happy thanks-giving, everyone!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Testimony, Thanksgiving and a Winner

What a week...

I don't know what else to say, this Thanksgiving has not been what I ever imagined it would be. The week started off rough on Sunday when my papaw had another major heart attack, went for 15+ minutes before regaining a heart rate and pulse which meant his brain went without oxygen for that long period of time. He was unresponsive from that point on. Tuesday the doctors told us that if he had not responded by Wednesday morning at 10am they would do one more CT scan to look at brain damage but then it would be time for the family to decide whether or not to take him off the ventilator (aka life support). While he did not want to ever be on life support and I know I would not want that myself it is soooo sooo very different when you are in that situation with someone you love and you have to actually speak those words. It's hard.

I prayed that if it was my papaws time to go home then the Lord would just take him 8am on Wednesday morning my papaw went on to heaven.

Needless to say facing Thanksgiving the next day without a loved one so dear even before you lay them to rest was difficult but we were able to pull together as a family and enjoy a good meal together.

Today we had the first round of services for my papaw and tomorrow he and the rest of us will travel back to WV where he will be buried on Sunday.

Now a short granny and papaw have been married 55yrs. Their love is amazing, they did everything together and while they were polar opposites they were the perfect fit. Their love is what has held this family together and helped up make the bonds we have together. He was a kind, strong, faithful man who loved God and his family more than anything.

 My granny was not at the hospital when he passed but she got there a few minutes later. My mom told me that she expected granny to come in and be beside herself upset. Instead she came in, patted his leg, said "My honey bunny you're in heaven now" then she immediately turned around and just started praising God for all the wonderful things he has done. That is simply amazing. Their love for each other was so strong that she did exactly as we are intended to do, Praise God even in the storm. She has had her moments but man is she strong, a hundred times stronger than I ever anticipated she would be. She is Amazing, He was Amazing and my God is AMAZING!

I will praise him even in the storm.

Now I am so sorry but this week has been so crazy I am just now sitting down at a computer to pick a winner, and the WINNER IS...
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congrats! Jodi email me at within the next 48hours with your address so I can get you your own Christmas Angel and you can get this tradition started with your family!

Don't forget to check back as our Angel will be making her appearance in the next week or so and I plan on updating you on all that she is inspiring us to do!

Also I had a FANTASTIC guest post for Thanksgiving but I did all the cooking on Thanksgiving for ALL the peeps in my family and took it to my grannys house so I didn't even get a chance to post it! I will post it tomorrow because her Paying it forward is awesome and comes with a yummy recipe!! Check back tomorrow for that!


Monday, November 19, 2012

A Heavy Heart for Thanksgiving

Well my heart is heavy today. My mind is in another place and I am not prepared for what this week holds.

All weekend long I planned out my Thanksgiving meal, done a little Christmas shopping and prepared my mind for my post today. I took note in certain people giving and tried to instill in my children just a little more of how important it is to give.  I just have such a hard time explaining it all to my four year old. Does he understand? Any I just confusing him? Until you see them in action you don't really know.

Yesterday about 4pm everything changed. I recieved a phone call, my dearest papaw had stopped breathing.

By the time I made it to the hospital they had gotten his heart started again but he was and still is unresponsive. Turns out he had another massive heart attack (he has had two in the past with the last one being in 2004 and he had 5 bypasses). The main concern though is that he is still unresponsive. He did not have a stroke but his brain was without oxygen for a period of time and now only time will tell what type of damage that has caused.

This was not how I imagined my Thanksgiving week going...I'm shocked, I'm scared, I'm humbled and I'm brought back to remember that God is in control. His plan is perfect and although we might not know what he has in store for us, it all works out for his glory. Yesterday as I drove to the hospital to be with my granny I felt as though I was running into His arms. I was calling out to him for strength, peace and grace. Within minutes I stopped shaking and was calmed. Man does it feel good to know you're being held by Jesus.

I do not know what today holds, what tomorrow holds or the day after that. Right now we just sit, wait and pray that His will be done. My papaw was a good christian man so there is no doubt that when he leaves this earth he is going to be in the presence of God and what an amazing feeling that will be for him.

Please say a small prayer for strength and peace for my family, it is greatly appreciated.

Hoping to bring you all my post on Thanks-Giving in the next day or two!!

Happy Short Week!


Thursday, November 15, 2012

We are HIS Everything

So I just read this post from Mamalode and was very moved. She was honest, true, and really delivered a strong message that for some moms is hard to swallow. While our children are EVERYTHING to us, they are not EVERYTHING to EVERYONE. And trying to teach the difference can be very hard because if you lean a little more to one side vs. the other, then you could leave them with a sense of arrogance or a sense of low worth. Neither of these two things do we every wish to see in our children.

While I agree with all of her post there is one thing that I feel she left out and so that is what I would like to talk about.

Read her post Two Hearts Two Stones, be prepared to cry a bit and then come back here for alittle more.

Yes, we want our children to go into the world knowing they are everything to us but there are going to be days when they feel the world is crashing down on them. What if this day comes and we are not around to comfort them. No one likes to think of leaving this place while our children are still young but the fact is that it happens.

NOW is the time to teach your children.

We are not guaranteed tomorrow.

Who will hold our children then? Who will be their comfort?

There is only ONE that comes to mind and he is the same one who carries me on a day to day basis. We need to encourage our children to talk to God like they talk to mommy and daddy. They should be able to cry out to him for help when mommy and daddy aren't there.

This world we live in is cruel, mistakes happen, everyone has a problem they are facing. Sadly there are so many who don't know how to let God hold them.

Here is my story of Faith and knowing that to Him I was EVERYTHING even when thought to others I wasn't.

"At a very young age my mom and dad taught me to depend on God. That he is the only one who can do miracles and he is the ONE who I should seek in times of trouble.

At the young age of 13 my mom was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She had been having awful headaches for sometime, double vision, MRI after MRI and I will never forget the moment that she got the phone call. The one that shook our world harder than you could possibly imagine. I knew it was her Dr and the way she dropped to the couch with tears in her eyes and a hand over her mouth I knew it wasn't good news.

Think of what your first reaction would be in that situation. What would you want your child to do. Curse God, scream WHY and shake their fist?

I ran straight to my bedroom and hit my knees hard, prayed as hard as my thirteen year old heart could. I cried, and prayed and cried and prayed.

Those months seemed like years on end but my family never lost their faith. Even when doctors were not hopefully for removal, our faith was not shaken. Through that time we learned to draw closer to God as a family. To ask him to help hold us and carry us through this dark hour.

We still faced struggles daily. People we passed in the grocery store didn't know our battle. So as mamalode said we couldn't let others who we weren't everything too upset us. They didn't know and we are not their everything.

God held us and heard us. That is why my mom is still here with us 15yrs later without a single problem since.

Oh and the tumor surgery, no treatment just LOTS of prayer and unending faith in a God who is the almighty healer."

Now tell me you don't believe in miracles.

I want my children to feel close to God in those dark times. Those times when I can't be there and they feel like they don't know where to turn. Because although they are EVERYTHING to US...they are not EVERYTHING to EVERYONE but they will always be EVERYTHING to GOD and he is always with us.


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

The True Meaning of Christmas GIVEAWAY

This is going to be a bit of a long post but bear with me because this is important and there might be a giveaway at the end ;)

I am just so excited for Christmas this year but who am I kidding I am this excited every year! Yes I always over commit, over dedicate and over plan but in this end all the smiles and laughter gets me through it excitedly!

I am also HUGE on traditions. I dont' remember a whole lot of traditions growing up but there are a few like "Getting to open one present on Christmas Eve...well this is still true to this day and if I forget my brother (who is 25) will remind me that we get to open one present from mom and dad on Christmas Eve", "Putting up mom and dads big tree every year" (now that I think about it though that was their way of getting out of it...make it seem fun for the kids hehe).

As Christmas comes every year esp now that I have kids of my own I was to instill in them traditions that they will look forward to every year. A couple years ago we welcome "The Elf on the Shelf". This was and is a fun way to remind Kinley about being good throughout the month of December. Plus it encourages his imagination. He has come to looked forward to "Elfies" arrival after Thanksgiving.

This year I am introducing a new "friend", who will be visiting us each day in December, The Christmas Angel. I have never seen the Angel before but immediately loved the message she brought. We still do Santa, the Elf, and all the imaginative stuff of Christmas but I strive very hard to be sure that my children know the true meaning of Christmas. While we read the story of Jesus' birth in the bible every year and I talk about it being Jesus' birthday, I will admit I do not remind him of the importance of this holiday every single day. I am human, I forget and this is my downfall but you can be for dern sure that when he starts acting up the first thing I yell is "ELFIE IS GONNA GO TELL SANTA YOUR MISBEHAVING AND YOU WON"T GET NO PRESENTS". Don't act like you have never said it know you have!

I am hoping that not only will The Christmas Angel help teach my children the true meaning of Christmas but will also remind me everyday of the true meaning of Christmas and what I should be telling their little listening (even though sometimes it is selective) ears.

The Christmas Angel is an exciting and creative way to make a lifetime of impression on your children by Restoring the Spirit of Christmas ONE MESSAGE AT A TIME!
Just as an angel came to Mary to give her a message about giving birth to Jesus, The Christmas Angel is here to bring her messages in her golden dust. Each message will be a way to encourage your children to give or do unto others. Your kids will become so excited to find the angel and her message and will be very excited about what they can do for someone else!
The Christmas Angel giftset comes with an 9-inch plush angel, a beautifully illustrated book and a pouch of golden dust all kept in a keepsake tin that can be used year after year!

You can also go to The Christmas Angel website and sign up to receive 25 days of messages for free to help you with ideas! I will be starting to post every few days in December about how we are giving this Christmas season and the messages that our Angel is bringing. So be sure to check back here!

Won't you join me in helping bring back to true meaning of Christmas and try to make a change in the world with one child at a time. We mold our children when they are young, they absorb the most now. One of my favorite bible verse is this:

"Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it." Proverbs 22:6


The wonderful people over at The HeartBox is giving The Christmas Angel to one of my lucky readers for free this Christmas season!

To enter use the Rafflecopter box below!!
If you do not win and would like a Christmas Angel of your own you can order them online. Please be sure you put my name, Melanie Cobb, in the "Where did you hear about us at" section! Thank you!!

How to Enter:

MANDATORY You must go "LIKE" The Christmas Angel on Facebook AND comment telling them you heard about the Christmas Angel from SweetSouthernMel

Optional entries:

Leave a blog comment of your thoughts about The Christmas Angel

"SHARE" This post and The Christmas Angel on your facebook- this will get you 2 entries and you can come back and do this everyday! Since sharing with other the true meaning of Christmas is what The Christmas Angel is all about!

Just copy and paste this: "Enter for your chance to Win @The Christmas Angel over at @SweetSouthernMel  Help share the True Meaning of Christmas this Christmas Season!"

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good Luck Friends!! Come back and share with me your thoughts on The Christmas Angel!


Monday, November 12, 2012

A Month of Thanks-Giving

Wow we are almost half the way through November...I always forget how fast this month flies by for me. I guess because I do all my prep work for the holidays this month. I try to get as much shopping, cooking, baking, etc done so that come Dec. 1st it's all parties and fun for me and my little family.

Our Month of Thanks-Giving is going ok. I have not gotten near as much done as what I would have liked to but I am finally beginning to see a giving heart through my little man.

Over the past week and a half I have been having my son "do chores" (clean his mess, take his plate to the sink, etc) to earn some money. The money that he earned went in to a mason jar in his room and then two Saturdays ago we went shopping for Operation Christmas Child (I forgot to take pictures of this). His Wednesday night class at church was collecting items for shoes boxes and then they were also having a lesson on giving. I was so proud that he took his money to the Dollar Tree, picked out gifts for the shoe boxes and never once asked for something for himself. He was just excited to be giving! I love it!

We also packed up a big envelope for our other child in Africa, David. I was uncertain how to explain to Kinley about David but God gave me the words. I broke out his little globe and showed him where David lived and then explained to him that David didn't have a home like us or clothes and toys like he did. Kinley went and picked out two hot wheels cars just to send to David and we packed it full of underwear, clothes, sandles(it's getting ready to be summer there), a couple books, crayons and candy. What melted my heart the most was when I asked Kinley to pick out what candy he wanted to send to David, he picked out his last candy necklace. If you knew how much my son loved his candy necklaces then you would be just as surprised as I was to see him grab that and put that in the bag.

I remembered to take pictures of this!

Yep all of that you see in the floor in the above picture I fit into this envelope (minus the socks)!
Notice it is taped very very well!

Although we might not do it everyday it is the little acts of kindness that teach our children and not only is it us telling them they should give but it is them seeing US give. Actions speak louder than words and so next time your are out and there is someone collecting change for Salvation Army, or anything for that matter pull out some change and GIVE. My 4yr old doesn't ask HOW MUCH mommy gave but instead he just sees mommy giving without thinking twice.This is how I want to teach my children. So yes you might have already given to them 4 times this week (because that's how many times I have been to Wal-Mart) but that is 4 times my child has seen me give. These past 12 days I have been so thankful for my husband, my children, my freedom, my daddy, a sturdy home for my family that there isn't enough acts of kindness I could do to show my gratitude. I just hope that I will continue to let God be my guiding light and let me show my children how to walk in His light! Hoping to do a few more acts this week and share with you soon!!

Do any of you have any acts of giving you'd like to share! Remember a little goes a LONG WAY!


Monday, November 5, 2012

GCH Winner and More

Well I hope you all had a great weekend!! The hubs and I celebrated our 7th Anniversary a little early and went out Saturday night. It had been a long time since we had a date night so I was looking forward to it all week long!
Dinner was wonderful, conversation was great and we just had fun being together. I love how after all this time it's like we are still those two college kids who fell in love. <INSERT GOOGLY EYES>

I can't believe that was 7 years ago today

Today is our actual anniversary and dang it I just remembered that I forgot to lay dinner out...hmmm. Such is our life! It will prob be a spaghetti kinda night now. Oh well! I also broke out the Christmas decorations and started getting that stuff put up and we started the painting on the toy room!

Wow, we have so much going on it's crazy 'round here!

Us Now!
 So much has changed in the past 7 years but I wouldn't want it any other way! My life, even with all the bumps and mountains, is pretty wonderful!
Now on to the winner from the contest last week!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway CONGRATS LADY!! I will send your email to the girls over at my fave site Girls Crochet Headbands and they will get you your certificate!

For all you peeps who didn't win don't forget that they are givings ALL my readers 20% off their total purchase with the coupon code SweetMel20. So go get your order on and get those CUTE Christmas Rompers just in time for Christmas Card pictures! The code expires Nov 27th!

For the next order of business. I realized something this weekend...sometimes I over commit myself and that turns in to stress. With this Month Of Thanks-Giving it is not supposed to be stressful so I am switching it up some. My first main purpose was to pay all my blessing forward and that still is important however I seen this weekend that as important as that is it is even more important to teach my children to have a giving heart!

I can't teach them to have a true giving heart if trying to keep up with my blog and the acts of giving is stressing me out!

So I am still going to pay it forward but it might not be everyday however I'm going to make sure that my children participate in the acts of giving. I will post each week an overview of what the kids and I did that week along with some of the things I am most thankful for!

Hopefully this will keep the stress down and better instill giving in my children's heart!

Much Love,