Wednesday, January 30, 2008

For My Kids!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Nicaragua Update

We worked hard and got dirty today. I haven't downloaded those pics yet, but you can check out the svmissions blog to check it out.

A couple days ago we went to the orphanage and got to hold and love the kids there. This is me with Saraela. She is so cute!

This is my hubby with her...

(no....we are not adopting!)

Today we worked all day doing nothing but hard manual labor to help construct the Village of Hope for some of the girls from the dump. Oh my goodness....I'm feeling the pain. I spent 3 to 4 hours of today loading and unloading cinder blocks into wheelbarrows. I was trying to be good to my back and so I was bending at the knees....that is equivelent to doing a squat! My legs and bumm are HURTING already! I need lots of strength for tomorrow! I will spend the day playing at the beach with a child from the dump. We go as a group but we are each solely responsible for one kid.

Again, for more info and pics go to

Monday, January 28, 2008

Nicaragua Fears Update

Ok, I don't have much time, because I should totally be sleeping, but I just wanted to give ya'll a quick update.

It seems as though your prayers and encouragment are working. I haven't had to truly FACE any great fears yet, but I have had a real sense of peace since I've been here. I've actually sat at a table with geckos crawling on the ceiling above my head...and stayed there. And today as we painted the school there were spiders (little ones) pretty much everywhere and I was ok. I just kept painting and moved on. The zipline is still to come. But honestly I haven't thought about it much. I'm just trying to take each day as it comes. The only weird thing I've done is when I sleep. I can't bring myself to face the wall (because bugs climb on walls). Other than that it's pretty much been a non-issue so far.

thank you all for your prayers and encouragement. Keep them coming. God is listening and answering!

A lot has happened since we've been here. So don't forget to check the mission blog for updates! You can leave comments there too!

Todd and I in front of the school that we helped paint today

Friday, January 25, 2008

Leaving for Nicaragua

(I tried to post some pics with this, but blogger was having problems)

Well, the time has come. We leave for the airport in about 4 hours. I should be sleeping. But I'd rather stay up late and hope to sleep on the plane. I was busy today getting ready. I went to Target and got all my travel sized toiletries. Went to Goodwill to get some shorts (that way I don't care if they get ruined). I couldn't find shorts, but I found pants. So I came home cut them and hemmed them. Now I have shorts. Team 1 said they all wished they had brought more shorts. They also said they wished they had brought a journal and that the homemade cookies got eaten up quickly!

So I made journals out of .99 cent composition books for my hubby and I. They turned out pretty cute. (suppose to be a picture here)

Then I made 2 batches of cookies which I packed in with the suitcases. That will be a nice treat for the team and I put together a little bundle of them in a special package for our host and hostess at the house. (more pictures)

I'm a bit nervous about the trip. As you may have read in previous posts there is the spider issue. There apparently are also a lots of dogs. Stray dogs. I DO NOT like dogs and am easily frightened by them if they are aggressive at all. To top it off I just read the most recent post from team 1. They spent their fun day (as will we apparently) zip lining through the jungle. Have I ever mentioned that I'm totally afraid of heights!!! I can pretty much already see myself all hooked up, sitting on the edge of the platform with everyone telling me I can do it and crying while I pray and ask God to carry me (literally). I know I'm sounding like a total wimp here. But as I've said before this whole mission trip is very outside my box. But I do know that God called me to go. So I'm just going to have to really trust God and give my fears over to Him. Any prayers you can throw my way in these areas will be great. I'm sure I'm going to have a lot of stories to tell when this is all over!

Well, I'm off. I don't think I'll be post here while I'm gone. I will have net access, but I'll be posting on the SV Missions blog instead.

While I'm gone you can stay up to speed on the mission trip at

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Fun with the New Camera!

I've been having fun with my new camera!!!
She likes taking pictures......

He does not.....

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Tarantula Update....feeling a little better!

Val from team one saw the comment I left and came to my blog to reassure me not to worry. Here is what she said:

Hey you really have to go LOOKING for those spiders it is not that bad. We only find 2 and they were babies on the ground found by the guys who were digging in the bushes for something. And Suzie says that is the first gecko that has ever fallen off. Lightening can't strike twice, right?

So, I'm feeling a little bit better about things now!
Thanks Val!

Although, I'm not sure I want to know what a "baby tarantula" looks like either!!!

pss: They posted some great pics from Nicaragua today. Click here to see!

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

"Houston....We have a problem!"

I was just reading the post that the first team in Nicaragua posted. Here is part of the post....

3. Geckos can and DO fall off ceilings onto peoples heads (Suzanne had a hard time getting to sleep later).

4. They do have tarantulas and great big beetles with horns and big moths the size of bats.

UM...HELLO! NOBODY TOLD ME THIS! I am DEATHLY afraid of SPIDERS! Seriously...I'm totally freaking out here!!!!! I mean FREAKING OUT! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! Oh my gosh! I'm literally crying and deep breathing right now!
I may need some anxiety pills or something! If nothing else this very issue will bring me closer to God because there is NO WAY I will be able to deal with it without some sort of divine intervention of peace. Start praying now people...I'M GONNA NEED IT!!! I leave Saturday!

Monday, January 21, 2008

A Peek Inside

Well, I've been showing you pics of the property, which is the outside, so I thought I'd give you a peek into the inside.

I've been working on the drawings for the cabinets throughout the house. Rooms like the kitchen, the family room, etc... Of course these are just my drawings, and changes will probably be made. But these are what I will give to the cabinet company to work off of initially. It will be fun when it's all done to go back and compare the final pictures to my drawings and see how different or similar they are.

This drawing represents a nook that is off the family room and kitchen. It will house the computer that the kids will be allowed to use to go online. That way we can keep an eye on things and it is visible from the two main rooms of the house. I also incorporated a bench because I love the idea from the 50's and 60's when the telephone was in the hallway and that's where you had to sit to talk on the phone. (I'll use a portable, but the kids can sit on the bench!)

This is one of the walls in the kitchen where the sink is and it has a pass thru that looks into the family room. I really want to do cream cabinets but to have a few areas (like the sink and island) that are either wood or painted brown.

This one represents one of the walls in the family room. It's a built in that will provide a lot of storage, housing for the TV and extra bench seating for large gatherings. This is the wall that you will look at if your in the kitchen looking through the pass thru. The benches will lift up for additional storage and the TV cabinet can close to hide the TV completely.

I have a few more drawings but I'll save those for another peek inside soon!

The Beginning of a Long Road Ahead!

The initial rock has been put down for the driveway leading back to the shop and the shop and house pads have been cut in. Today the foundation crew is there prepping for the foundation to be poured tomorrow!

This is the spot where the house is going to go. This pic is taken from the upper portion of our property looking down at the road coming into the valley. The house you see is our dear friends and soon to be neighbors....The D Family (I haven't asked them if I can say their names or not, so I'm respecting their privacy!)

This shows wher our shop will be. The shop will actually be where you see the fresh dirt and the rock represents where the asphalt will be. We think we may even paint a basketball court on the asphalt! That would be fun! I can already see my son and his high school buddies out there playing! (okay that's YEARS away...but that's what I imagine!)

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Nicaragua - How to get updates

If you've been reading my blog then you know that my hubby and I are going to Nicaragua soon on a mission trip. Our church is sending two teams. Team 1 is down there already and we are on team 2. If you would like to see what the teams are up to and how God is working in both their lives and the lives of the people they meet you can go to during the next two weeks. It is now listed under the "links" title on the right side of my blog under "Summit View Missions"

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Boys and their Toys

For Christmas the kids and I got my hubby guitar hero. He wasn't real thrilled about the idea of it and was going to take it back. I put on my sad face (because I wanted it!) and he decided to keep it. What he wanted to get instead was a remote controlled hellicoptor. So I told him to just go get one! So he did.

Ok, it has totally cracked me up because he gets to fly the thing for about 5 minutes (maybe) before he crashes it AGAIN and has to go inside to "fix something" on it. That is just not my idea of fun. But it is to him.......boys and their toys!

Guitar hero on the other hand has been hours of fun!!

This is my hubby fixing his chopper and laughing because I'm teasing him about it!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Earth Moved!

We broke ground today on our new house! We have several dry days ahead which is a huge blessing! While I was there today I decided to take some pics around the property.

This was the original pic - this morning was cold and frosty!

This is the same pic after I experimented in ps elements.
Until someone buys it and builds, this barn will be the view I have out my studio window

pic of one of the trees that will be in our backyard

The apple tree that's sadly gotta go because it's in the middle of my entryway

I can't believe we have acutally begun this house building journey again. My hubby sat there last night looking and the plans and said, "this is stupid." I asked what was stupid and he said, "building a house again!" I said, "it was your idea!!"

20 boxes packed......I have no idea how many more I have to go!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Welcome to the neighborhood......we're leaving!

The week of Christmas a new family moved into the neighborhood. With the craziness of the holidays it took me until last week to get over there and welcome them. It was a little weird to go and greet them considering the fact that we are moving. But I baked a batch of cookied and put them in a basket (so as to put my best "Bree VandeKamp impression" forward). My daughter really wanted to carry the she did! When we got there we met the man of the house, but his wife was a the store getting medicine for the kids because the kids were all sick. So we only got to meet him and still need to meet the rest of the family.

That same day I began my packing adventure. I packed my very first box.....
Candles. I now have about 6 or 7 boxes packed altogether. (not all candles!) I have a looooooooong way to go!!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Nicaragua - getting outside of my box

In a couple weeks my hubby and I are going with our church on a mission trip to Nicaragua. We will be working with the guidance of an organization called Forward Edge International. Once place we will spend some time at is the city dump of Managua. It is a dump where the trash of over 1 million people goes, but it is also the home to many people. Yes, people actually live there. Adults and children. The people along with vultures and rabid dogs scour the dump to get food and things to sell. Many of the young girls there prostitute their bodies to the dump truck drivers either for money or so that their family can be the first ones to go through the truck load of trash. Which leads me to the second place we will be going, "The Village of Hope" It is a community being developed outside the dump to house those young girls and get them out of that situation. I'm not sure exactly what we will be doing in the village, but some of the possibilities are working the home construction and finishing and furnishing 2 of the homes. We will also be spending some time at the orphanage near by that ends up taking in babies from the families at the dump. There is a school that will be opening for the dump children the day before we come home and I've heard that there will be work to do there as well to get it ready.

Doing something like this is SOOO outside my box. I'm not a real "manual labor" kind of gal, holding babies isn't really my thing, and I've never been really good at relating well to little kids that I don't know. So why am I going? Because the Lord asked me to. I've known for awhile now that he's been calling me to do something like this. Something that will stretch me and cause more growth. Something that on my own I would have a hard time doing, but with His strength, will be able to do. I'm excited and scared at the same time about what the Lord has in store for me. What he wants to teach me through this. But I'm prayerfully preparing, so that I am ready.

Here are a few pics of the dump so that you can have an idea of where we are going.

In the pics below you can see the "houses" of some of the dump residents

These are some of the dump residents crowding around a new dump truck load
This is a video that I found from another organization that is working to help in the dump as well.

Feliz Navidad! from Braddigan on Vimeo.

If you want to see a bit more, you can go to this link:

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Sock Monster cont.....

Here is a pic I put together based on the previous post!!

The Sock Monster

My hubby has been getting a bit annoyed lately because his socks keep disappearing! He's asking me, "what are you doing with my socks?"
I told him that I'm not doing anything. But there is a sock monster that lives in the laundry room. He doesn't believe me....c'mon ladies back me up here! Ya'll know what I'm talkin' about!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Oh Boy...It's really happening!!

So, I've told ya'll that we sold our house. However I haven't started packing or even gone and collected any boxes yet. I've been waiting until after the inspection was completed and the buyers gave us the list of things they wanted done. I knew it couldn't be anything huge, because our home is only 5 years old and my hubby is the builder! I just wasn't sure if the buyers would put together some "crazy list of demands" that my hubby would say "no way" to. Well.....we got the list today and it was very few things and very reasonable. So, I guess it's really happening. We are really moving. Time to hit Craigslist for some moving boxes!

We went this weekend to the new property to stake out the site for the new house. Our new neighbors are long time family friends of ours from church. We were talking with them and the upcoming stresses and guess what the response was...."let me just pray for you guys right now". So there we stood arm in arm on our new house site praying with our new neighbors. God is sooo good. We have been very blessed for the last 5 years to live next door to my hubby's parents (and no I'm not kidding about that!!). And there have been many occasions where they have prayed with us or for us as well. It's just great to see how God is blessing our move right from the beginning!


Monday, January 7, 2008

So it's been 5 days....

My sister got on my case because it's been like 5 days since I've posted. I know I haven't posted, but I did redesign my blog....that should count for something!!

So here is my post for today. I've decided to start something that can circulate blogland and maybe come back to me someday....Since my blog is called EIGHTCRAZY.....

EIGHT things that drive me CRAZY:
1. My sister getting on my case about posting when normally she posts like 3 times a month!! (lol)

2. When I'm shopping by myself...kid free...and inevitably I go to the store where someone elses kid is crying or throwing a tantrum and no matter where I go in the store they seem to be following me!

3. When my DVR cuts off the last minute or two of a show (like last year with American Idol) or it cuts out right when they are previewing for the following week (like for Prison Break)!!!

4. Anytime Spencer opens his mouth (from the show "The Hills"....yes, I'm a wanna be teenie bopper!)

5. Everytime I walk into my family room, and somehow the pillows on the couch are all messed up again!!

6. When someone constantly questions me!

7. My lack of long term focus!

8. When people have no sense of loyalty!

The following people have been tagged with EIGHT things that drive you CRAZY:
Kim (my sis), Beckie, Julie, Kim (from TCB), and Michele D.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Aebleskiver Recipe

I had two requests for the recipe, so here it is!

Aebleskiver Recipe...As given to me by my MIL

4 egg yolks
2 T. sugar
1/2 tsp. salt
2 C buttermilk
4 egg whites (beaten stiff)
2 C. flour
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. baking powder
cardamom (optional) I use a good sprinkling in the batter

Beat the egg whites until stiff. Beat egg yolks with sugar; add rest of ingredients, folding in beaten egg whites last. Add cardamom if desired. Have your pan on the stove, it should be heating at about medium. I also keep along side of me a small cream pitcher with oil. With each batch I place a small amount of oil in each cup. Before making first batch. Take a little batter and drop into a preheated and oiled slot. It should bubble if the pan is hot enough. Using a ladle, fill each slot about half full of batter. Keep two forks and paper towels close by (the fork quickly becomes caked with batter and will need to be wiped off periodically). Let the bottom half cook. Then with the forks, just roll the aebleskivers until they puff up and feel somewhat firm when you insert fork. Adjust heat if they get too dark too fast so that the middles aren't cooking. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and put in a pan in preheated 325 oven till you have enough to serve.

You should alwasy season your Aebleskiver pan (at least once) before using it the first time.
Seasoning your pan
1. Heat the oven to 250-300
2. Coat the pan with lard or bacon grease. Don't use a liquid vegetable oil because it will leave a sticky surface the the pan will not be properly seasoned.
3. Put the pan in the oven. In 15 minutes, remove the pan and pour out any excess grease. Place the pan back in the oven and bake for 2 hours.

Repeating this process several times is recommended as it will help create a stronger "seasoning" bond.

Round Balls of Yumminess!

When I married my hubby I was introduced to a New Years Day tradition....
Aebelsikvers for breakfast! They are these YUMMY danish pancakes that kind of look more like doughnut holes (but they taste like light fluffy pancakes). You sprinkle them in powdered sugar and dip them in jam. They are soooo good. Every year for New Year's Day we head over to his folks house to devour a plateful of these along with the rest of the family.

After our bellies are full we sit around and watch football all day. This year during half time of one of the games we busted out Guitar Hero. My MIL even gave it a whirl!

Hope everybody else had a fun day. I sooo wanted to go hit the 75% off sales at Target, but we are moving, so no new purchases for me =( It would just be more that I had to pack!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy 200EIGHT!

Hope everybody had a fun and safe NYE! We had fun with friends jamming out on Guitar Hero! SO MUCH FUN!!!

Can you believe it is 200EIGHT? It's gonna be a big year for us. This month my hubby and I are going on a mission trip to Nicaragua (the Nicaragua link will take you to a page with several videos about the location we are going to) with our church through Forward Edge International, and then in March we'll be moving and we'll spend most of the year building our new home.

Our friends, the Jensens, who's son Luke is battling AML posted this on their Caring Bridge site today. A friend had sent it to them. I enjoyed it so I thought I'd pass it on to ya'll.

May God make your new year a happy one!
Not by shielding you from all sorrows and pain,
But by strengthening you to bear it, as it comes;
Not by making your path easy,
But by making you sturdy to travel any path;
Not by taking hardships from you,
But by taking fear from your heart;
Not by granting you unbroken sunshine,
But by keeping your face bright, even in the shadows;
Not by making your life always pleasant,
But by showing you when people and their causes need you most,
and by making you anxious to be there to help.
God’s love, peace, hope and joy to you for the year ahead.