Tuesday, April 29, 2008


Mary recently asked me how to make the diaper cake above, so I thought I'd pass on my crafty know-how to all my bloggy friends.


- floral wire
- card board circle 12"-14" diameter (depending on size of your base tier)
- a couple 12" doilies
- hot glue gun & glue
- ribbons & decorative items
- 2-3 small baby bottles with flat tops. (Soap, powder, sippy cup, etc. will do. Anything round that will be about the same size as the width of the diaper. The following directions use 2 small bottles. Adjust as needed.)
-45 - 50 diapers. I used size 3. Try to find plain white. It's hard to do, but I found one that had a decoration only on the front waist. To hide this I just folded the front down to make a triangle and put the solid white to the outside of the cake. (I don't recall the brand name, but it was in a large yellow box at Wal-Mart and it only cost about $18 for a box of about 95. This made two babycakes.)


Step 1: Cut out cardboard circle (about 12"-14" in diameter.) Cover with doilies, with lace overlapping edge of cardboard, so the lace can peek out from under the cake.

Step 2 - Separate your bottles from the lids. I found it easier to stack two 4-6 oz bottles one on top of the other, rims together, and then the lids on top of that, rims together as well.

Step 3 - Wrap a long piece of floral wire (about a couple feet) around the bottom bottle (you will eventually use it to tie the center pole together so the cake doesn't topple over). Set aside the other bottles for now. (The only thing I didn't figure out is how to secure the Babycake to the cardboard base. Now that I think about it, I would probably poke a hole in the middle and knot the wire through before securing it to the first bottle.)

Step 4 - Wrap the bottle with diapers (on their sides). I overlapped them about half way. It takes 3 or 4 for the first layer. When you've covered the bottle, and like how it looks, secure it with a piece of wire. Continue to wrap with diapers until it forms a good size base for your cake. Securing each circle with wire (not too tight, though, so you don't rip the diapers!)

Step 5 - Take your next bottle and place it on top of the center of the base layer. Rim to rim works best. Wrap the wire connected to the first bottle around the second bottle, leaving plenty to secure to the third tier and to the top ribbon.

Step 6 - Repeat steps 4 & 5 for as many times as it takes to complete the size cake you want. I did 3 layers and found that was plenty. Leave wire ends poking through on top to secure to the ribbon.

Step 7 - After you have your layers completed, secure the wire on top to a bow. (It takes about 4 -5 yards of ribbon to make a big bow to go on top of the cake. Ribbon with wire edges stand up the best.)

Step 8 - Decorate the cake. I used little rattles I found at Wal-Mart. Just tucked them in the diapers. I also used 2 coordinated colors of ribbon to tie around each tier (Michael's has cute ribbons that have baby sayings on them like "It's a Girl!" or "Baby Booties!") I secured the ends to each other with a dot of hot glue to hold them in place (just don't get the glue on the diapers!)

Makes a great baby shower gift and centerpiece!

Monday, April 28, 2008

How shall I serve the Lord?

Last weekend I attended a women's retreat with the ladies in our church. I really enjoyed the speaker who was inspirational, knowledgeable, understandable, humorous, witty and personable.

By the end of the weekend I kept getting this nudge in my heart and head, "I think I'd like to do that." It's been a couple years out of ministry due to health reasons and now I'm beginning to consider how I can serve God in a way that works with my own limitations.

Of course, after awhile of actually considering being a women's conference speaker, I stopped myself short. WHAT AM I THINKING? Every single women's speaker I've heard seems to have a life full of tragedy. Not your everyday-broke-a-nail kind of "tragedy", but pretty much catastrophic-change-your-life tragedy. Apparently, that is what makes these women so interesting to listen to. We sit amazed, in awe of how they rely on the Lord through each devastation. Why in the world would I want a job with such a prerequisite?!

I doubt my minor trials, although they always seem devastating to me each time, would qualify me to teach hundreds of women how to grow closer to the Lord. I think I'll leave that to the experts and plan on going back to teaching our women's Bible study. The Lord opened the door for me to get back in to that in the fall and that seems to be the perfect fit for the gifts He has granted to me.

Psalm 136:1 Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good. His love endures forever!

During the retreat we were asked to write a prayer based on scripture. Here is mine in a pattern of Psalm 136.

Give thanks to the LORD.
His love endures forever.

The Creator of the universe.
His love endures forever.

The Giver of all life.
His love endures forever.

Who promised a Savior in the garden
His love endures forever.

Who rescued Noah from the flood.
His love endures forever.

Who blessed Abraham with His Seed.
His love endures forever.

The Son of David who delivered me.
His love endures forever.

The Holy Spirit who called me.
His love endures forever.

The Father who continues to love me.
His love endures forever.

All praise to the great I AM.
His love endures forever.

To Christ the Word.
His love endures forever.

To the Spirit who comforts.
His love endures forever.

To the LORD who heals.
His love endures forever.

Who sustains me through each trial.
His love endures forever.

Who calms the storm within my spirit.
His love endures forever.

And quiets the raging waters all around me.
His love endures forever.

LORD grant me peace.
His love endures forever.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Fightin' the Frump

Well, I thought I would join the ranks over at
Mrs. Fussypants where she is working hard to help us all fight the frump.

So, you may ask, what have I been doin' about that lately? A few things actually. I joined Weight Watchers and have just started my eighth week. I wish I could say I have been doing well at that, but as I'm only down 4 pounds I do believe I've got to work a bit harder. Somehow I did manage to avoid gaining any weight this past weekend, which was a small miracle considering the resort food we ate on our retreat! In fact I lost 1.8 pounds! I do believe I've turned a corner on the weight loss, as my own scale is continuing to decrease. Curious how much I might be down by next Wednesday? Hoping to get in to that 2 lb per week decline to be ready for summer!

In addition to writing down everything I put in my mouth, I have increased my activity. I'll be heading over to the gym to try out the Elliptical machine again. I tried that for the first time on Wednesday. . .what a work out! I definitely have to keep that in my routine as I felt much better after that than I do on the tread mill (not nearly as dizzy and my back didn't hurt - go figure!)

The last thing I want to mention is what I've been eating for lunch the past couple of days. I've been listening to the book Doctor Yourself by Andrew Saul (info here), and he is continually praising the benefits of vegetable juicing. Unfortunately, I'm not a big veggie fan, except of course about Larry and Bob! Despite this, I decided to give it a try. Since he talked about fruit juicing too, I combined the two to make a more palatable drink for myself. Gotta tell you, it was quite yummy and satisfying.

I tossed in my Vita Mix blender (this is an awesome blender, it can pulverize and juice pretty much anything) the following items:

1/2 c. pure blueberry juice
1 whole cucumber (peeled and halved)
1 1/2 c. strawberries (tops and all, just rinsed them)
3 stalks of celery (washed and chopped in medium size pieces)
1 c. frozen raspberries
1/4 c. frozen blueberries
1 Tbsp Agave
1 Tbsp Flax Seed
1/2 tsp Vitamin C

Blend til pulverized into a beautiful smoothie! It was delicious. Next week I'll experiment with some other veggies, but the cucumber and celery was as brave as I got for the first time 'round.

The only drawback to this type of smoothie, was that it didn't last. It was very filling at the time and I felt no need to eat anything else, but I was quite hungry and craving protein a few hours later. Hmmm, any suggestions?

Have fun fighting the frump today! I'm off to the gym.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Led by the Spirit

I'm back and refreshed from our church ladies retreat! The weekend focused on prayer and already I've begun to implement some of what was discussed. For instance, praying continually by having a constant conversation with God throughout the day. This, combined with last night's small group lesson in which we talked about glorifying God in everything we do, enabled me to avoid Dunkin' Donuts this morning.

Here's how it went down inside my depraved little mind. Mmmm, I could really go for a donut and a cup of coffee for breakfast. Considering that I didn't gain any weight over the weekend with all the scrumptious food I ate, I do believe I can justify said donut as my reward. Besides, I'll be working it off at the gym this morning and afterward, I'll be reaaalllly strict for my Weight Watchers weigh in on Wednesday morning.

About half way to Dunkin' Donuts a little question pops into my head. Would I be glorifying God by eating that donut? Sing a song, hum a little tune, try to distract myself from the answer that keeps nagging me. I finally submitted to the Lord's leading and decided against that tempting donut. In my circumstances, with all the health issues linked to an unhealthy diet and the fact that I'm paying good money to attend Weight Watchers, eating a donut would certainly not glorify God. So I pulled over and ate a Weight Watchers granola bar that I happened to have in my purse.

One little victory for the Holy Spirit in my life today!

1 Thessalonians 5: 17 - Pray continually!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Everyone's a Comedian!

Ya know how kids are always telling jokes and attempting to make up their own? I recall the phase of knock-knock jokes that I do believe lasted for several years straight!

Yesterday, Darlin' came up with one that was pretty clever, so I thought I'd pass it on:

What happened to the short football team? They had to "fourfeet!"

If you're interested in further laughs, a little more on the intellectual side, then check out this movie from Ben Stein. He always cracks me up! Expelled debuts in theaters this Friday. It is a documentary on the battle of Darwinism vs Creationism. Based on the trailer, I doubt it will be a boring one. Ben Stein is sure to sandwich the information between his dry wit and intellectual humor like a good Oreo!

I'm hoping I get to see it at some point, but I'll be away on a Ladies' retreat with our church this weekend. I'll let you know what I think as soon as I see it!

Monday, April 14, 2008

With Vigor!

I've got my workout clothes on and I'm heading to the gym. Today I was planning to focus on my arms, before I even looked at this next verse in Proverbs 31.

Proverbs 31:17 She sets about her work vigorously; her arms are strong for her tasks.

How appropriate is that? I was already planning to make my arms stronger. Now I've got to work on the "vigorously" part. I'm not one to do anything with much vigor, except perhaps getting up in front of people and embarrassing myself (and my daughter) for entertainment's sake. Anything for a good laugh right?

Last month I attended a school retreat with Darlin'. Each of the parents had to participate in a skit. Ours happened to be the only one with a song: R-E-S-P-E-C-T. Well, the other mothers and I attacked that with much vigor, to the chagrin of our kids, who I might add were all smiles amidst their red cheeks! One of the dads even called me the Redheaded Aretha!

So maybe if I put on some mo-town and sweep my hair up into an explosive beehive of curls I may just be able to attack my household chores with as much gusto. Here's to working vigorously!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

More Melodrama

Welcome to medical melodrama month sponsored by Denitra's Den. Glad to be of service to you (please note the sarcasm!)

So the saga continues. Wish I could say it was an April Fool's joke, but no.

Now for the weekly update.

I saw the surgeon and scheduled belly button surgery for April 24th. Yup. You read that right: belly button. Apparently I've got an umbilical hernia. Hmmmm, wonder if a tummy tuck will be a part of the procedure?

Despite the obvious belly button issue, the surgeon is not convinced that it is the source of my problems, namely abdominal discomfort and pain. So he wants to pursue gallstones. (This is where Hubby laughed. It just doesn't seem to stop!)

So to recap: Last month I went to the doc with the flu and discovered I had kidney stones. The other week I went back with kidney stones and he told me I'm pre-diabetic (haven't even mentioned this one yet!) but that will have to wait til we sort out the kidney thing. So he sent me to a surgeon who, mocking my puny kidney stone, declared it must be the bladder and I'd better get surgery on that hernia (which I didn't even know I had!) On to the surgeon who said. Yup, that hernia's gotta go, but I think your real problem is the gall bladder and you oughta get the intestines checked out while your at it, too . . . just in case!

ENOUGH ALREADY - I sound like a hypochondriac! (Hmmm, that might be nice - then it would all just be in my head.)

Tune in for next week's continuing saga of medical melodrama when Denitra declares, "What?! You have got to be kidding me!"

Monday, April 7, 2008

A Business Savvy Wife

Lookin' at Proverbs 31:16 we see a description of a business savvy wife. Check it out:

She considers a field and buys it; out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.

Not only is this woman accomplishing the tasks of wife, mother, and homemaker (which I've got to add - was much more rigorous in Old Testament times. I mean, c'mon, when have I ever had to spin yarn or kill our animals for food?!), but now she has started her very own home-based business.

Now, I've tried several times to have my own little business going. I sold crafts, candies and baked goods for a year or so and later moved on to selling Discovery Toys for a couple of years. Unfortunately, I'm not as business savvy as the Proverbs 31 woman seems to be. As my husband put it, I ran a very nice charity!

Perhaps, we can look at this another way. Are we helping or hindering our home finances? Those times where I attempted my own business, may have been questionable if I was helping at all, but that was my intent. Working as the Senior High Youth Director for a few years, was probably my biggest contribution during our marriage.

The current season of life in which I find myself is not at all conducive to contributing to the household funds. So how can I be "business savvy" without really being involved in any kind of business?

I was reading a book called The Coupon Mom and she helped me understand how. By viewing my home as my business I can contribute to helping our financial situation by focusing on saving money. I've definitely been doing better at this: making hubby lunch most days, trying not to eat out myself as often as I did before, and trying to implement a coupon system when I do grocery shopping. In essence I'm attempting to be more business savvy and in so doing, emulating the Proverbs 31 woman to a small degree. As a firm believer in being a stay at home Mom, I find this most encouraging!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Back on Spin Cycle

Once again it is that time of year when it seems to rain more often, the flowers start poking through the ground, the sun brings outdoor coat-free time, and I stand swaying in the breeze. Literally.

I might as well just mark my calendar every year for this particular week in the Spring, when the vertigo rears its ugly head, just a little bit higher than before. So far, so good. Just seems to be set on a gentle spin cycle. Haven't made the annual trek to the emergency room. . .yet. However, a feeling of foreboding is upon me.

The past week I have felt more as if I am walking a ship at sea, than standing flatfooted in the kitchen attempting to pull some semblance of dinner together. Right now the seas are getting choppier, the longer I take to finish this post! Like I said before - so far, so good. I've been worse, so I need to just back off from the computer a bit and rest a little more. (Just a little warning if I'm not posting over the next few days.)

Today, the hurricane arrived. Fighting the sea legs I've seemed to acquire, I headed to an appointment at the urologist regarding a small kidney stone. Despite the fact that the walls of the examining room began to billow in the non existent sea air, I managed to not fall over and kept clear enough to be blown over by the diagnosis.

Naturally, I need to follow up on the kidney stone with an ultrasound. If that doesn't answer the question, then I believe the words he used were "we'll use the scope to see the bladder". . .YIKES! I'm reaaallly hoping it doesn't come to that. Still, this was all somewhat manageable until the poking.

After a few minutes of poking and prodding in particular places and me practically jumping off the table, the doctor looks back at my records. Oh, well perhaps it's your hernia.

WHAT?! What hernia? I don't have a hernia! Well, apparently I do and it was just discovered 2 months ago in the midst of all the kidney testing. Hmmm, you'd think that would've warranted a mention to me. . . .

This doc felt it merited much more than a mention and has sent me to see a surgeon ASAP. That appointment is tomorrow. So it looks like my traditional ER visit will be an actual OR visit.

I don't even want to think how I'm going to top this for next year!