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Archive for the ‘My Life’ category

Ever since morning sickness hit about 9 months ago, I gave up on exercise. I did try for a few weeks during the second trimester, but then I was sick and we moved all at the same time, and by the time I recovered from both, I couldn’t keep up with it, mostly because of issues with my hips.

I did find that the Moms Into Fitness Prenatal Yoga helped me a lot before the move, especially after the ultrasound. Lying flat on my back at 5 months pregnant just did a number on my hips, and I spent the rest of the day limping–until I did the yoga. All the stretching and lengthening exercises just fixed me right up. *smile*

I’m more of a exercise video person, but I do okay with a list of moves to do on my own. I found a really great program that I used for a while (before the move). It was a Fit and Healthy Pregnancy program. I didn’t go along with much of the diet part of the program, but the exercise portion seemed well rounded. For someone who doesn’t enjoy exercise videos, this would probably be a great fit.

I put into my schedule a half hour of exercise before the baby wakes up to eat. If I exercise before my devotional time, I am more alert and able to focus. But this morning was the first morning I actually got up and did exercises–partly because I was already awake and figured I might as well be doing something. So I’m buying a postnatal exercise routine that I will use to supplement the exercises my physical therapist gave me. I’ll let you know how that goes later on.

Ultimately, I would like to be able to work back up to P90X, which I was doing when I got pregnant and quit when morning sickness arrived. Of course, I’ll have to find an hour for exercise, instead of just a half hour. I’ll probably get one of Beachbody’s easier programs first, like Slim in 6, which would probably be a step or two above what I am doing now, but not near the intensity of P90X. I miss how great I felt when I was doing that program!

What about you? Have you been exercising? Wish you could get back into it? Can’t find the time? Doing a program you love? Tell me about it!

Hopefully I can be consistent with it!

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The more I work with the schedule, the more impressed I am with it. I have enjoyed having time to get caught up on mending projects that would otherwise not have gotten done for a few more months. I also appreciate having time to blog.

Sure, sometimes it gets cut into, like today. I actually washed 3 loads of laundry this morning, and the line was full since last night. The load from last night was baby clothes that were given to us. Two big rubbermaid containers full. I filled the washer with a load and hung it up all night. Because my line doesn’t get light until around 11 am, I had two loads done before it had even begun to dry–sheets and one load of family clothing. Then I realized that I had forgotten to wash a new pillowcase that I wanted to use today, and my daughter had forgotten to remove another pillowcase (we are a bit short on pillowcases, so some of them need to be washed every week to be available), so I washed those on the quick wash setting with a bunch of cloth napkins to fill it out. Anyhow, when blogging time came, I ran out for 10 minutes to haul down dry items and hang wet ones in their place. There are still wet things in the basket… I may have to run a load in the dryer this evening, but I’m hoping with the warm weather we have, coupled with a gentle breeze, the clothes will all be dry today, even if they don’t all get folded today.

Speaking of pillowcases, I just have to take a diversion to tell you about one of them. A few weeks ago, I found at the thrift store a set of sheets with cars and trains all over them for my son. But I didn’t see a pillowcase to go with the sheets. Until last Tuesday. Apparently it hadn’t been put out yet, and no one wanted it by itself. So I bought it!

But I digress.

I still haven’t gotten the whole schedule perfect yet. My schedule is pretty good. I have time for everything, with enough wiggle room to catch up on things that need to be done.

Today I got the kids going with school right on time. For now, we’re doing 1/2 hour of school. When we finish the preschool books, I’ll consider bumping it up to 45 minutes for Gislaine, at least. Manny is anything but ready to start any kind of school. He’s much more hands on. I let him color, play with puzzles, or his special wooden tools that he only plays with during school, or look at books. He’s not ready to write letters yet. But he notices what his sister is doing, and I wouldn’t be surprised if he knows the alphabet by the time the school year is over.

I spent my morning cleaning time (10-11) changing bed sheets and dusting/polishing the wooden furniture. I haven’t polished any furniture (except for the computer desk when it arrived) since we moved into the house, so some things really needed it. I took everything off the surfaces and did a thorough job. It took about 1/2 an hour. The piano smells so nice, as does everything else!

My husband still hasn’t gotten on board with the schedule. I’m not sure if he will ever or not. He makes certain things on time, like breakfast (usually) and morning worship, but other than that he pretty much doesn’t live with any kind of schedule. That’s okay. He’s not going to be home all the time forever. Actually, he has only 5 more weeks here before he has to go back to work, and less than that before school starts (1 1/2 days per week).

But I thought it might help him if he understood what I am doing and why with the schedule. We haven’t had a lot of time to discuss it, and he’s not a big reader, especially in English. He reads his devotional books and the Bible, and beyond that doesn’t do much reading. However, I have discovered that he enjoys listening to books on CD. So I have started to read the book Managers of Their Homes by Steven and Teri Maxwell (the book that taught me how to make a schedule) and record it on Audacity. When I’m done, I’ll burn an mp3 CD, and he can listen to it in his car when he is driving. If that goes over well, I might read him some other book that I would like him to read. This will also help me be a better reader. I make a lot of  mistakes when I read–especially if I read too fast.

Well, it’s time to feed the baby now, then on fold whatever laundry is dry, with my daughter’s help. Then I’ll bathe the baby and get Gislaine practicing the piano. She had 2 days of practice last week, and is doing very well with it. She spends maybe 15 minutes a day practicing. At her age, I think that is quite enough! When that’s done, I’ll spend a half hour sewing or mending, then I’ll have a half hour to do whatever needs to be done (most likely laundry). After that the older kids take their baths, then I feed the baby and then get supper. After supper is worship and bedtime. Then I have some time to catch up on whatever didn’t get done before, which will probably include freezing the beets I boiled last evening. They were a gift from a church member, and since my son can eat beets, I don’t want them to go to waste!

In the mean time, I hope my husband cleans up the kitchen. He ate lunch an hour late, so I cleaned up what I could during clean-up time, and left the rest for him to clean up while I napped. He didn’t do it. So I may end up doing it during my discretionary time, or take 10 minutes out of my sewing time. We’ll see how it goes.

All I know is, being on a schedule and on schedule makes me very happy!

Have you ever had wheat grass juice? Jamba Juice sells it for a pretty penny, but it’s made fresh to order. I tried it plain once–not very tasty. I’ve also had them dump a “shot”, as they call it, into one of their smoothies. I could taste it, but it was much more palatable that way.

I have almost finished a 100-serving container of powdered wheat grass. I enjoyed it most during my pregnancy, when eating anything that wasn’t liquid for supper would give me heartburn–and it also fixed those random pregnancy food cravings in seconds! I told my husband it was addicting. He didn’t believe me. He also didn’t much care for the taste of the powdered wheat grass.

Then I started sprouting wheat to redry and make bread with. I’ll have to post on that sometime. Anyhow, he asked if he could have some of the seeds to grow. He planted them out in the garden, and in a few days cut the grass, blended it with fruit juice in the Vitamix (which really blends it well–not all blenders would do a good job of breaking down the cell walls like a high-powered one does), and strained it. The result was so delicious–there was no grassy flavor at all. He decided that was because of the freshness of the grass.

Well, after doing that for several days, he has now told me several times that he is addicted to it. He’s going to keep that patch growing as long as he can. And when it gets too cold for it to grow well (it’s winter wheat, so it won’t die, but it might not actually grow during part of the winter), he is going to grow some in trays inside the house.

However, he has decided to get a juice extractor. We are looking at the Lexen manual juicer, since it is the cheapest. I’m interested in comparing the taste of our wheat grass to what I recall of Jamba Juice’s grass. Because I can’t understand why I can’t taste the grassy flavor when it’s blended with juice, whereas I can taste theirs when it’s dumped in a smoothie.

What I do know is, I plan on downing a shot every day once we get the thing. I figure we can juice a bunch and freeze it in ice cube trays, to thaw and down whenever (or to add to green breakfast smoothies). Apparently there is little difference between some component of wheat grass and the hemoglobin in our blood. Which means that eating wheat grass will literally make good blood. I’ve heard a doctor joke about how God put Nebuchadnezzar on a diet of wheat grass for 7 years–at least it was grass, whether it was wheat or barley or some other grass, we don’t know for sure, but he did eat grass, and grass is healthy if you can digest it. And you can digest the extracted liquid.

When we get the juicer, I’ll do a review and let you know how it works.

Pictures

I finally got some pictures downloaded from the new camera we were loaned by a friend after ours was stolen. Here are some random photos, and some that go with previous posts.

Recently, we had raw mock salmon, raw crackers, and a tossed salad for Sabbath lunch. It was more filling than it looks (we ate a lot more crackers and salmon than it shows on the plate). It was delicious.

Gluten-free bread is usually tasteless. Well, not the Gluten-free Goddess’s Delicious Gluten-free Bread. Not only is it delicious, but it turned out well even though I used chia seeds instead of eggs. Here is the result:

Recently we bought a new dresser and matching nightstands. Here they are:

And the leather couch mentioned in the same post:

Some pictures of Gislaine and Emmanuel from our recent visit to a campground with our church:

Isn’t this one precious?

Here are more photos of the kids from other days:

Gislaine by the tomatoes in the garden

Manny in the crib set up for the baby

And what post full of pictures would be complete without pictures of little Rafael? Here are a bunch:

I love these new cloth diapers I bought on Zulily. They are a one-size fits all pocket diaper, though right now I’m using them as wrap covers for prefolds, which I have a lot of. Zulily has great deals on new stuff–I got these diapers 50% off. If you sign up with my link, I’ll get $20 if you ever decide to order something from them.

Give me a hug!

I like to hold Mommy's finger.

No more pictures! Just get me dressed already!

That’s all for now. I’ll try to post more later.

Yesterday, August 28, was our anniversary. Our 7th anniversary of the date we celebrated our marriage.

We made it a special day by dropping the kids off at a friend’s house in the late morning and and going out just the three of us (the baby is too young to leave anywhere more than 2-3 hours, and we planned on being gone much longer than that).

First we went up to our favorite Thai restaurant, Thai Fresh in Portland. We first went there during its grand opening 2 or 3 years ago, and have gone back periodically ever since. The staff know is, and the food is so delicious, and not too greasy. And almost all the menu can be made vegetarian by using veggies or tofu instead of meat. Most of the items allow a choice of meat or tofu or veggies, giving us many options to choose from.

We actually didn’t go there right when we got there; we were early and the baby was hungry. So while I fed Ralfie in the van, Rafael went across the street to the Asian market to browse. When he came back, we ate.

After that we went to the Crystal Springs Rhododendron Garden. Sure, the rhodies aren’t blooming this time of year, but we still enjoyed the ducks and squirrels and other animals. We saw a squirrel couple: the female appeared to be nursing, and the male was, well, obviously male. They let us get some nice pictures before moving on. We took some other pictures too.

After that, we went to the OMSI to see the Deep Sea video in the OMNIMAX dome screen. It was spectacular! Of course, anything on that big of a screen is spectacular. But the video was really nice, too, showing such interesting things about the underwater world that we see so little of. We both every much enjoyed it.

After that, we went back to buy something from the Asian market (some frozen things that we didn’t want to get earlier or they would have been melted by then). When we got back to where the kids were staying, the lady invited them to spend the night, so we went home, put the baby to bed, and enjoyed a quiet evening with just the two of us. It was a very memorable day!

 

I’m really enjoying the new schedule that I developed over the last few days. Today was Day 1 of implementing it, and so far it is working quite well.

The only weak areas I can see so far are making sure the kids are occupied at all times with something. Some times work better than others.

For instance, I set my nap time for half an hour starting at 2:00. At 2:00 our time, 3ABN’s Tiny Tots for Jesus program starts, so I set that up on the computer for the kids to watch, and that keeps them completely entertained and quiet for my nap time. The baby is napping during this time, too, so unless he is sick or something, there is no reason why I shouldn’t be able to get my nap. When I get up, Manny goes down for his nap and Gislaine continues to watch the next program (Kid’s Time) while I get to blog. Then the baby gets up at 3:00 for a feeding. This is a new thing, and so far we are all liking it. (Manny doesn’t know that Sissy gets to watch a second program… we’ll see how long that lasts.)

We technically should be starting Kindergarten this year, but Gislaine never really finished preschool last school year. I blame it on my being pregnant, but really, I think I was just lazy. If I’d had a schedule then, it would have been better. But I figured that school isn’t really a big priority right now. I don’t plan on starting her in first grade until next year, so there’s been no rush. I never did a proper kindergarten before starting first grade, just a few workbooks, and that’s all I’m doing with her, too.

Part of the problem is that before I would try to squeeze school in later in the morning, once I was in the full swing of my housework. And it rarely worked out smoothly. So I decided to try something different. Morning worship is at 9:00–timed during one of the baby’s feedings. We eat while he naps, and try to finish breakfast clean-up before he gets up. Worship lasts 15-20 minutes, and then we have time to do a few last things, like brush teeth or make a bed, things that didn’t get done before worship. Then school starts at 9:30.

For now, we only have half an hour scheduled for school. Gislaine does a page or two each from 3 workbooks, then colors a little. The workbooks are books we picked up at the dollar store. She’s only about half way through the alphabet, so we have several weeks still to go. I’ll probably buy some kindergarten workbooks from the same place when she finishes what she’s got. Then next summer I’ll start planning for first grade.

After school, the kids have half an hour of playtime together while I start on my list of cleaning/organizing projects. Then Manny gets to play alone while Gislaine helps me for the next half hour. At 11:00 I get a half hour of time on the computer/Internet. If there are things I need to do–today that was planning our budget for the next month–they get done first. If I have time left at the end, I might check out Facebook or something like that.

At 11:30, it’s time to start lunch prep. Lunch is at 1:00, and I have to feed the baby at 12:00, so I break lunch prep in half. I either prep the food and cook it after feeding the baby, or start something cooking and let it cook while I feed the baby, depending on the meal. The kids play outside for an hour until noon. Once it gets rainy, I’ll figure out something for them to do inside during that hour.

While I feed the baby, we have story time. They get to pick a book or two, and today I started reading the Laura Ingalls series. We read a few pages from the first book today.

Today Gislaine decided to have a bad attitude during her work-with-mommy time, so she ended up getting some time in the corner and extra chores, so she missed out on playing outside. She was very disappointed about that. Let’s hope she has a better attitude about folding clothes with Mommy at 3:30, so that she can spend an hour outside from 4-5, or whatever the schedule says (I haven’t checked that far ahead yet).

So that’s where I’m at. I’ll share more about the schedule throughout the week if I have time. I should–blogging time is in the schedule!

 

This post is linked with the Modest Mom Blog.

Now that I have 3 children, one of whom has special dietary needs, I feel I must develop and stick to a schedule. I purchased the book Managers of Their Homes and read it through in 2 days.

Just a few minutes ago I finished putting the schedule together. I must say, their method makes it so easy! I filled in the obvious things, like meals and the baby’s nursing schedule. Then I filled in the kids’ schedules and the gaps. My husband plans on making a schedule for himself–though if he will just make meals on time and help with breakfast prep and be available to spend 1/2 an hour with the baby while I shower, I’ll be content. The way it is structured, I’ll practically be able to run the house by myself, including teaching 1/2 hour of preschool/kindergarten and starting Gislaine on the piano. I also plan to do 1/2 hour of mending or sewing and a half hour working on my blog each weekday except Tuesday (shopping day). I suspect that we will test the schedule on Monday, but Tuesday is not only my shopping day but also our anniversary, and Wednesday I have an appointment for physical therapy that I couldn’t get scheduled for Tuesday, so it will be interesting to see how those days go.

It is also the lament of many a housewife that they can’t stay on schedule when their husband is home. I have mine for another 5 weeks. This should be interesting!

Have you ever done a schedule? How did it go?

Have you ever heard of infant potty training (also known as elimination communication)? I heard of it when my daughter was almost 12 months old, which was a bit late to start. She was a bit unusual, though, and basically initiated potty training on her own and was in panties by 19 months old. Basically, though, the idea of IPT is that you learn your baby’s signals and take them potty from a very young age. It is commonly practiced in places like India and many primitive cultures where diapers just aren’t used. There are various levels of IPT, also–everything from trying to catch every pee and poo, even getting tiny underpants that are the equivalent of size 2 diapers, to a very relaxed “I’ll get what I can and forget the rest” attitude. One cannot really consider their child truly potty trained until somewhere around 18 months to 2 years, but it can simplify the process considerably for those who keep it up.

With my first son, I tried to be more diligent, and we did pretty well for a while, but then his eczema just got too out of control, and I gave up trying. He finally learned to do #1 in the potty less than 3 months ago, and we’re still working on #2…

With little Rafael, I decided it was worth it to try. After all, every poo I catch is one less poopy diaper to clean out, and it’s pretty easy to catch pee, too. The truth is, babies really don’t want to go in their diapers–hence the likelihood that they will pee as soon as their diaper comes off, especially when really little. That tends to go away after a few months as they learn to go in the diaper and get used to it.

Anyhow, I guess you could say I’m on the more relaxed end the continuum. However, I have noticed that if I take my baby right after a feeding (instead of relaxing for 10 minutes and cuddling), he will almost always pee, and often will poo too. Sometimes I take him before a feeding, or any time I notice him grunting. Even if it’s just gas, the way I hold him seems to help.

So how do I hold him? I hold his thighs with my hands, his back to my tummy. Often my thumbs stick up and he will grab them with his hands. I hold him over the sink in the bathroom (it’s a lot easier on my back than bending over the toilet, and at this stage he’s too little to sit on the potty). In this position, I can bring his knees closer to his chest if I desire, especially alternately, and this can help get things going, too. I watch his face to see if he is relaxed or if he is concentrating; there is a look that I have learned already in less than 2 weeks that usually tells me whether he has more to do or whether he is all done.

Even Daddy is picking up on the signals. He noticed this morning that Ralfie was grunting, and thought, I wonder if he has to go poo. Sure enough, a couple minutes later, he filled up his diaper.

Sometimes I don’t always avoid keeping the diaper clean. This afternoon he pooped a little bit before I got him to the bathroom. However, he did a whole bunch in the sink–the kind that leaks around the legs and soils baby clothes. In fact, as long as I am diligent to take him after every meal, I almost never have to worry about washing out baby clothes, because diapers never leak! Of course, cloth diapers leak less than disposables, but still, they can leak. It also stretches out how long the cloth diapers last, because fewer of them are getting soiled and even wet. He’s been known to stay dry through a nap and go when he woke up.

So how long will I keep this up? As long as practical. Right now it’s a trade-off: a few minutes a day holding him over the sink verses washing and folding the diapers that would have been soiled if I hadn’t. Cleaning his bottom is a breeze–I just grab a bit of toilet paper and wipe, instead of using a bunch of wipies to clean everything from the middle of his back to his knees. So maybe it doesn’t save time, but it doesn’t really take extra time, either, and does save money (fewer diapers to wash, so fewer loads of laundry).

And hopefully he will be fully potty trained before the age of 2. That would be the biggest blessing!

As a side benefit, it seems that his big brother is taking a clue from the baby. He started telling us when he had gone in his pants, instead of waiting for us to notice the smell. Hopefully he will start telling us before he goes, but for now it’s a step in the right direction!

Have you ever heard of Infant Potty Training? Ever tried it? What was your experience? Would you consider trying it again, or for the first time if you never have tried it? I’d love to hear your feedback!

Today I had a near-disaster with my iPod that turned into a blessing. Let me tell you about it.

Today was my shopping day. I had packed a lunch and planned to be gone most of the day. I took the baby with me, because he exclusively breastfeeds and I don’t pump, so if I’m going to be gone more than two hours, he goes with me. But that’s not really relevant to the story.

What is relevant is that I keep my shopping list on my iPod. It is so convenient. I use the ShopShop app, which allows multiple lists (I have 8 or 10), so I can make a list for each store. I like being able to keep a list of items I want to buy at the health food store separate from the items I will buy at the grocery store, and I keep a running list of items I want to buy at the second hand store, the dollar store, the pharmacy, etc.

My first stop was the chiropractor. My second was Whole Foods. By the time I finished my shopping, both my baby and I were hungry. So I found nice cushioned chair with armrests that had a little table beside it. I sat down with my lunch bag on the table, got the baby going, and pulled out a sandwich and my iPod. I wanted to check my email with the free wifi, then catch up on some of the blogs I follow.

For some reason, though, there was a delay actually connecting to the Internet. I connected to the network, but there was no wifi. Now whether there was simply a delay and I was too impatient, or whether the Internet had a hiccup, I’ll never know. In any case, I decided to try powering my iPod off and restarting it to see if it would work then.

That’s when the trouble started. The iPod wouldn’t turn on.

I held down the power button for what seemed like forever, but nothing happened. Or so I thought. Suddenly I noticed that the screen changed very slightly, as in it lightened almost imperceptibly. And suddenly, about half way through my lunch, I heard it make the sound that indicated that I had received a text message, which confirmed my suspicion that the screen was the problem, and that all my info was not lost. Worst case scenario, I might have to buy a new one and see if I could figure out how to move everything that was on this one onto the new one. That would be hard, though, since the laptop that is linked to this iPod is in the repair shop. And has been for over a month (meaning I haven’t backed up my iPod in over a month).

I had planned on trying out a new WinCo that was near to Whole Foods (new to me–I’ve never been there) and on my way home. But I couldn’t access my list. So I decided to go to the one near the Mac store, which happens to be only half a mile from the WinCo I usually go to.

The guy in the store was very helpful. He took the iPod and held down both buttons for about 20 seconds, and voila, the screen showed up again! I was praising the Lord in my heart right then! But he also noticed that it seemed a little slow. He told me that when I connected it to iTunes on my computer, if I hit the restore button after syncing it, that it would reset the iPod and would work much better. I had noticed that restore button but had been afraid it would wipe everything clean and that I would lose all my info (notes, to-do lists, shopping lists, and such were not something that would be easy to replace). Because it didn’t say that it would then restore the backup that I had made last time it synced. He assured me it would, however.

Now, having this minor problem with my iPod was worth it, since I was able to gain a valuable piece of information that will hopefully eliminate some of the annoyances I’ve been having, such as safari crashing while I’m typing a FB status, or not being able to listen to music while using certain applications that never used to crash before when I was listening to music. I’ve had the iPod almost 2 years, and I have never restored it. I’d say it’s time!

So I was able to do my grocery shopping, as well as stop at my favorite thrift store, where I found some much-needed items, including Sabbath shoes for Laine and a set of sheets for Manny–they have trucks and busses and cars and trains all over them.

Now if I could just get Ralfie to sleep in the baby seat on the shopping cart… But I shouldn’t complain. I didn’t lose my shopping lists! The Lord is good and worthy to be praised!

New Furniture

When we first got married, we were pretty unstable as far as homes went. We have lived in 9 different houses since our wedding, and we will only be celebrating our 7th anniversary end of this month. And we lived 2 years in one of those locations! Granted, we would have stopped with the 7th place if a tree hadn’t fallen on it!

When we were in Texas, we were living in admittedly temporary housing. In the first three places we had some furniture that belonged to those homes, so we didn’t need to buy any. Then we moved into a home where we only planned on staying for a few months, so we needed furniture but didn’t want a lot.

So we bought a futon from Walmart and a bookcase or two as well–the cheap pressboard kind. Someone gave us some dressers for free that were in decent shape, but a little banged up. But they were free!

Well, we hated the futon. It was too low and the pad was thin so it slid all the time. It was also too long in the seat–meaning that even long-legged people like me needed pillows to be able to sit with back against the back and still be able to bend legs over the edge. And the angle of incline was really bad, really uncomfortable. But it was all we had in the way of a couch.

So now that we are settled, we decided it was time to ditch the futon and get a couch and a love seat. Based on our experience at the previous house, where we had used our landlord’s leather couch, we decided that we wanted leather. It doesn’t get dirty like upholstery does, and it doesn’t make one sweat like vinyl does (because it breathes). But leather is expensive! We knew we couldn’t get what we wanted new. So we started watching Craigslist.

We also needed new dressers. We still had the chest of drawers we had been given in Texas, but the dresser with the mirror had been destroyed with the house (my husband didn’t want it). And that chest of drawers was full of fabric, having been in the sewing room. We hadn’t needed a dresser in the house that was destroyed because the closet had shelves that worked just fine for clothes. But now in our new home we didn’t have that. So we were putting our clothes into packing boxes that had been turned top-to-the-front and stacked on top of each other to make cubby holes. This worked for a while, but over time the boxes began to break down, and then Manny almost knocked them over by shaking the stack the other day–we’ve lived here 4 months. So we began watching Craigslist for that too.

And we found a lovely dresser with two matching night stands. Solid oak, including a 3-part mirror (the two ends are on hinges) and 8 drawers. It fits nicely in our large walk-in closet, making it a dressing room with clothes hanging on 2 sides and the dresser and mirror on the other. A rack to hold not-dirty-enough-to-wash-yet clothes hung over the door completes it. We also cleared out some of the stuff that was cluttering it and now can put extra shoes under the hanging clothes.

We estimated that the dresser and night stands would be worth around $2,000. We paid $50!

A couple of days later we found our couch. It was one of those long couches with a corner, and even had a chase at one end! It was a nice cream/tan color, not too dark, will go with any color scheme we choose. It’s only 2 1/2 years old and in pretty good condition. We paid only $500. That is pretty good, all things considered! Considering it is worth 3-4 times that new–or more!

The couch came in 4 pieces which fit in our van in two trips, but on our laminate floors, they tend to slide around. But I had a good solution. You know those sticky foam pads that can be used to hold rugs in place? Well, I had purchased one from the dollar store–a small one–so I cut pieces from it and put them under the feet of the couch. This was much simpler than using the build-in connections, and now the couch won’t move anywhere. But each piece is light, so if I want to move them, I can simply lift up and slide out the pads.

The lady that sold us the couch also gave us the area rug she had had in the living room. It matches the two pillows we already had in the living room, so once we get it steam cleaned, we will be putting it in the living room. Then I will choose decorations to match. :)

I really wish we had a camera to show you pictures… But we will eventually. But for now, these items have been more of a priority. I’m glad we have the couch, too. I can lay on it where I can’t yet lay on the bed. It is so comfy, even on a hot day (yesterday reached a high of 98, and inside it got to around 85).

I just want to praise the Lord for His blessings to us!