Monday, September 28, 2009

Our Weekend

We had a lovely included: a hayride at a birthday party (if we look hotter than warthogs, we are. The last week of September is still sportin' 90 degrees down south)On Sunday we celebrated the baptism of our little nephew, Pearce.
Above is the never ending attempt of taking a picture in which all 3 kids smile and no one sticks their tongue out. Close... we'll keep trying

Below is precious baby Pearce. How beautiful is the heirloom gown my Aunt Jan made!!! I have this daydream of me and Aunt Jan being in her "sewing sweatshop" (her garage :) surrounded by berninas and vikings, batiste and lace......... one day, Aunt Jan!!

John David and Katie are such good parents! John David is also becoming a complete hero to Landis..... he has great things like remote control airplanes and such!

Now trying for a picture of all 4 Miller grandbabies!

On to today... so what does Samuel do while we do school? He is a total ham! Today he was especially wild. At one point we went outside so he could let some energy out; all was great until he sat down in an ant bed. This little guy keeps me hoppin'!

OK, so what is the below picture of???? Our loot from CVS today. Total cost before sales and coupons: $58.33. (I would NEVER pay that much for all of this stuff!) After sales and my coupons, I paid $18.70......but here is the fun part... I got $17 back in ECB's (Extra Care Bucks). So it's like I paid just $1.70 for all of this great stuff! I love CVS! The bottom of my receipt reads: Fall 2009 spending: $41.21 Year to Date Savings: $1,049.72

Happy Monday to you all!!

Check This Out!

I was gonna share some pictures from our weekend... but I just discovered that I left my camera disk at my moms.... so the weekend "scrapbooking" will have to wait! If you have not checked out Leigh's site, you should DEFINATELY go do so now! Scroll down and see all of the amazing stuff she has up on her giveaway this week......all you do is give a $5 dollar donation, then leave a comment under the group of stuff you want! On Sunday, she will draw the winners! Go check it out here!

Sunday, September 27, 2009


A few weeks ago I shared with you a young lady named Katie Davis who lives in Uganda and is mommy to 13 kids.... well, now she is mommy to 14! You can go here to see pictures of her new baby girl and to follow her amazing life. Reading her blog helps to keep life in perspective for me.... ok, so everything in our house (including the AC) has broken in the past few weeks, we have had unexpected bills (like a cracked collar bone :) and some days life just seems tough. I read the reality of what life is like for most peoples of the world, and I am reminded that I have NOTHING to complain about. Go here and be impacted by Katie Davis!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Fundraiser Friday!

It's Friday.... time for some links to some great adoption fundraiser sites. I am excited about introducing ya'll to Leigh. Leigh and her husband are in the process of adopting a baby girl from the SAME orphanange our little one is in. She has a great fundraiser going. OK, here is how it works.... Each week Leigh posts various items... way cute unique designer items donated by boutiques and other specialty stores. You enter the giveaway by paying (click on the payapl donate link on the side of her blog) just $5 per entry or $25 for 6 entries!These are vey nice items you could score for just $5! Go here to see the great clutches and jewelry you can win for this week.... only about 30 hours left for this giveaway. After you pay, leave a comment on the post about which item you are "bidding on". On Sunday, Leigh will "draw" the winner. Even better... if you tweet, blog or link to Leigh on facebook, you get 1 extra entry per "advertising" you do, so you could get up to 4 entries for just $5! My sisters and sister-in laws should be excited...looks like they will be getting great Christmas gifts this year! Yea!!

So, click on this button to check out Leigh's site and leave a link to your adoption fundraiser, or any great adoption fundraiser you love, below:

Money Saving Mom...and Flitterbugs!

Those of you who know me probably have heard me sing the praises of Crystal, otherwise know as "Money Saving Mom". Her coupon-clippin', frugal site has encouraged me to cut our grocery budget by more than half! A few weeks ago, I sent her some Flitterbug dresses as a thank you... how surprised I was this morning to find a picture of her girls in the dresses posted on her site! If you haven't become a follower of this encouraging lady, whose motto is "save more so you can give more", go here to see her site (and her cute girls in flitterbugs :)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Evangeline is 6!

Yesterday, our baby girl turned 6! I had planned on posting a picture of the day she was born, but I cannot find that disk... a few weeks ago I put the disk in a "safe place" so I wouldn't loose it, and now I can't find it.... am I the only one who does crazy stuff like that?

We started the day with pancakes (she ate them in the car before we headed into Kroger :) See the cute birthday shirt MiMi found her :)

We then came back and did school... MiMi came to visit and brought pizza (health was out the window as we ate Evangeline's favorite food all day)... all day Evangeline was anxious for the long awaited moment when Kenny would come home and we could have her cake and gifts! Evangeline requested that I not make her cake this year(snif, snif)so for the first time she got to choose a cake. Actually this was not her first choice..... she wanted the big, beautiful, pricey cake...I had to herd her down to the more budget style items. I then had to say and spell out her name about 15 times for the baker to put it on the cake :)
Evangeline loved the little Hello Kitty play set she got... now if I can only keep Samuel from swallowing the pieces :)
Each time I am out at the store, inevitably I will have an older lady tell me "how they remember when theirs were that young" and "how time flies". They are so right. It makes my heart almost hurt to think of what a sweet baby Evangeline was and how I wish I could hold her and keep her young and innocent forever. And yet, I also long to watch her grow up and see the young lady she becomes. Today, as much and even more than ever, my prayer and greatest desire is to "see that my children are walking in the truth". Looking back over the past 6 years, if there is one thing I wish I had done more of, one thing I desire to do more of, is PRAY for my children. No amount of ground wheat, organic home grown veggies, handmade clothes, even an excellent education will give them the foundation they need for life as a relationship with the Savior will. HE is life itself! It is so easy for me to fill up my day with good things to do with and for my kids... and leave the heart issues for another day, another time... yet we are only promised this moment now... we have no idea what tomorrow will bring! May we, may I not miss this precious time the Lord has entrusted to me with with my little ones!
Happy 6th Birthday Evangeline Betsy!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

"Winterize" your flitterbug!

Ok, so it is NOT fall here, but Evangeline wanted to dress warm this morning. A Turtle neck fits great under a flitterbug dress, so you can wear it year round!

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fundraiser Friday! (Sorry, a little late:)

I spent the morning at a consignment sale, waiting in line for an HOUR for a $4 pair of shoes. If you have never been to a M.O.P.S consignment sale, it is sort of an insane right of passage to being a deal seeking mom..... though I have found you really have to SEEK to find any type of deal at these things... that being said, I did find a great $4 pair of Sunday shoes for Landis, and the kids waited so well in the hour long "express"lane".

I have found a few great adoption/ orphan care fundraising sites that I want to share with you. If you have a site, or know of one, add it to the link list, or email me and I will add it on!

* I love this site! Here (147 million orphans) you can find unique shirts and even jewelry made by women in Uganda... the money goes to help feed their village! You can read about the people of this village, and the AMAZING young lady who feeds them here
*Stephanie sells really cute bows to help fund their upcoming domestic adoption.... I love her blog! She also has a lot of links to other adoption fundraiser sites
*Shades of Us is an amazing site... you can purchase coffee, jewelry, art prints... all sorts of things and the profits go to the villages from which the items were made. You can also do a catalog sale with their products for your own fundraiser

Maybe one of these sites will inspire you to buy adoption gifts for Christmas this year.... if you have a site, email me or leave your link below!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Whale Blubber

This has been a bit of a brutal week..... lots of whining and complaining at our house! Weeks such as this make me think, "am I totally missing the boat ?" and leave me reaching for my parenting books. Discipline and consistency seems so futile on whiny days, but I am praying for the strength to buck up and keep at it! On an up note, we have settled into a good school routine and.... I made my goal of having a "eat from the pantry challenge" for the week and did not go to the grocery store! I took a break from all of the sewing today (as I plan to do A LOT this weekend) and did some fun crafts with the kids. Evangeline and Landis sat at the table and did play dough, and I finally got around to painting a little something to hang over Landis's bed. It definitely is NOT as cute as what my sister-in-law made for sweet baby Pearce (go here to see her art!) but at least I got it finished and hung in about an hour and a half.

A little conversation from our day:

(At lunch)

Evangeline:"Mom, could I have some whale blubber?"

Me, confused:"HUH?"

Evangeline, totally seriuos, pointing to the turkey lunch meat:"That, the whale blubber"

We don't eat much lunch meat around here, but I think it officially has a new name :)

Here is Samuel, all healed up from his collar bone accident.... as WILD and STRONG WILLED as ever.... and sooo sweet. He jabbers all the time, but the only 3 articulate words (or rather, commands) he says are: "Ma-Ma", "ba-ba" (drink) and "SCAT" (to the cat, roosters, siblings:)

I've done a bit of re-arranging and updating on my site.... let me know what you think and if anything is confusing or not well explained so I can tweak it! If you have a picture of your little one in a flitterbug and would like me to post it here, just email it to me! We did the math, and approximately 700 flitterbug dresses will be the difference between a little girl growing up in an orphanage or in our arms!

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Smocking Sell!!!

At present I am not taking orders for custom smocking, but I will be posting a few of my kiddos handmades to sell. I have been going through some of the stuff I have smocked for them over the years and have a few to offer to you. These are sale prices, as the dresses have been worn! All profits from these garments will go to boost our adoption fund! If you see something you want to buy, just email me.... first email "wins" the sale:) More to come over the rest of the week!

Size 18 month- Silk dupion angel sleeve dress with french laces and smocked bishop "collar"
The silk is off white and the laces are candlelight colored. Smocking is on white swiss batiste and the sleeves and hem are hemstitched. This is a size 18 month, but Evangeline wore it until she was about 3!

Size 24 month- This is a flannel type material... Evangeline wore it one Easter in Colorado (it always snowed at Easter.. so I opted for a warm material!) The collar and sleeve bands have a hand bridging stitch.... lots of bullion flowers! There is a sash in the back.... the hem is about 6" deep and can be let out for longer wear

Yellow Tulip Sundress- Size 4
This can be worn year round... add a turtleneck for the winter! 100% cotton with little yellow tulip. Evangeline wore this A LOT, so I am only asking $20 for it

Turkey Shirt- size 18 months- This could be worn on an infant as a dress, or with leggings or jeans... I think we squeaked 3 years out of if! The material is pima cotton... so soft!

Monday, September 14, 2009

The Adoption Process

A few of you, especially our relatives, have wondered about our whole adoption process. Here is a very short description what the next few months should look like for us.
First is the dossier process. This takes about 3 to 4 months. During this time we will put together a crazy amount of paperwork and have it translated and sent to Ethiopia. We will also have our home study. I think the home study is the most misunderstood aspect of the adoption process. "Home study" congers up images of someone searching through every nook and cranny of your home, inspecting for expired food and dust. Not so the case! I think a more accurate description should be a "Family Study". It is an interview process, 2 to 3 meeting, in which a case worker will basically put together a picture of our family. Our views on education, how we handle conflict, our childhood background, why we want to adopt.... topics such as these will be covered. Our case worker will come to our home for the final visit to talk to our kids about how they feel about the adoption. This part of the process is an expensive part... Home study fees, agency fees, fingerprints, translation fees, orphan care fees.... lots of fees! Then we will submit our dossier (along with more fees, which I was glad to learn that many of these fees go to help other orphans) and we will be put on a waiting list!
The referral process (waiting for our child to be referred to us) will probably take about 6 months. We are probably looking at adopting a girl, about 2 years old. Once we are matched with a child, the actual adoption process will take about 2 to 4 months. (And more fees!) A court date will be set in Ethiopia (we do not have to be present for this court date). The adoption will be finalized at this Court appearance, and Kenny and I will travel (along with other adoptive families) within 2 to 4 weeks. Our stay in Addis Abba, Ethiopia, will be 5 to 7 days, and then we will travel home with our little one! We will also have post adoption visits and reports at 3, 6, and 12 months.
You can go here to read more about adoption from Ethiopia with AGCI.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Sarah and Brant

Last night my sister, Sarah, and Brant got engaged! We are soo excited for them (though I will be missing her when she moves to Dallas). Brant is one of 6 kids, 2 bio and 4 came to their family through international adoption. I am already looking through my stash of batiste and french lace.... I'm thinking Evangeline may need something "heirloomish" for their special day!!:)

Friday, September 11, 2009

Fundraiser Friday

Christmas.... I love the Christmas season! Just this week the children and I whipped out Josh Groban's "Noel" to start anticipating the upcoming season. One thing Kenny and I try to avoid is filling up our credit card by buying gifts.... great deals and killer sales are so easy to find its typically pretty easy to avoid this. (My relatives may be laughing at this point, for many years we have just not given any gifts :) But do you really want to put hard earned money, any amount, into something that just ends up in next month's yard sale stack? After spending so much time on adoption sites and launching our own adoption "fundraising campaign", it occurred to me that we could purchase gifts a bit differently this year. There are so many families out there who are desperately trying to bring home one of the 147 million orphans in the world. All that stands between a good home and loving family and these children is: money. So, this year, we are going to buy most all of our holiday and birthday purchases off of adoption and orphan care sites. It is amazing how creative people in their fundraising endeavors.... and the best part? Every penny of the hard earned money you spend on gifts helps to bring an orphan home! So, maybe the item will end up at Goodwill one day... that's ok, its purpose has made a lifelong difference in the life of a child. This is also a great way to share with your loved ones the stories of orphans worldwide... perhaps you could write a note on top of each gift and ask the recipient to pray for the child who this gift benefits each time thy use it! Each Friday on this site will be a "Fundraising Friday". If you have an adoption fundraising site, leave your link here. The rest us can take a peek and see what your story and what you have to offer. Maybe the gifts under the tree this year can serve a twofold purpose!

TO LEAVE YOUR LINK: enter the name or description of your adoption fundraiser and the site address. Only adoption fundraisers please!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

New Fabrics!

I just posted some new fabrics... click on the "fabrics" page to check them out!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Back To School

Today was our first day of homeschooling for the year. Evangeline is in 5K and Landis began his schooling this year (4K). Landis was sooo excited! I had a new "back to school" outfit for each child: a flitterbug top and capris for Evangeline and a robot shirt for Landis... Landis loves robots! Both kids were up and ready to go early.....

The kids get a new pack filled with school supplies and get to have a look at their new books for this year! Landis essentially "did 4K" last year with Evangeline... I was shocked at how much he learned by watching. In this picture we are practicing our letters in pudding.... yum! (this is a great way to learn letter formation for little ones!)

Over the last year I have promised the children that I would take them to Burger King "one day". To celebrate our first day of school, we finally went! We have a wonderful BK playground here, and it was a lot of fun!

Samuel loved the playground; not much keeps this boy from action! He RAN around the whole time, french fry in hand! It made me nervous, but his collar bone injury didn't seem to bother him much... he's a tough one!I tried to get a picture of all 3 kids.... didn't happen:)

Monday, September 7, 2009

New Designs are Here!

Some new designs are up and I am ready for orders! Along with Flitterbug dresses, you can order ruffle pants, capris, initial tee shirts and flitterbug tops! Check my FAQ's page for prices and a list of all the styles. Here are a few pictures (I will post more tomorrow :)

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Our First ER Child

Somehow we managed to go almost 6 years of having kiddos and have not had to visit the ER with any of them. I've always thought our wild child Samuel would be the first to break, crack or "bleed" something, and he came out in style yesterday! Just as Kenny's parents walked through the door for a weekend visit from Mobile, Samuel had a small tumble off the couch and managed to crack his collar bone. He was sooo sweet at the ER, and was pretty excited about all of the equipment. He layed still for his X-rays and to get fitted in a brace. The brace hasn't seemed to bother him a bit, but he wasn't too sure what to think of his hospital bracelet :) So, what are we to do to help him heal?? Keep an 18 month old STILL for the next few WEEKS !!!! The brace does help quite a bit, but Samuel cries and is in a lot of pain if any pressure is put on his right shoulder/ collar bone. He can't roll over or get up off of the floor from a sitting position :( I foresee getting to hold and love on my baby boy A LOT over the next few weeks..... I'm kind of looking forward to babying my baby!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Fall Preview

Here is a little sneak peak at some designs for the fall (plus a few flitterbug dresses, all set to ship) ...... I will be adding more pictures, fabric and up date the styles you can purchase on this site within the next few days!

Off To The Auction!

The little dyed chicks Kenny brought home to us at Easter were sooo cute! But then, Wall-E and Polly turned into big, mean roosters......... so tonight it was off to the auction with them! Hopefully, Kenny and Landis will return with some good layers to add to our coop!