Saturday, February 27, 2010

2 Easy...Cheap...Chicken Meals

It's been awhile since I posted a recipe so I thought I would share one of my favorite cold weather meals with ya! Both of meals will cost you less than $10 and your crockpot does all the work!! Me and my crockpot we are like BFFs!! She makes me happy when I come home and smell her baking my dinner...and she does all the work! :)
Crockpot Chicken:
1 sliced onion
1 cut one stock of celery up
1 whole chicken (these are usually only $4 or less)
Season salt
Remove insides of chicken. Rub the chicken with season salt and pepper inside and out. Fill the inside of the chicken with onion and celery. Place the remaining onion and celery on the bottom of the crockpot and then place the chicken on top. This is what it will look like:
Set your crockpot on low if you can cook it about 8 hours...if you need to cook it in about 4 -5 hours put it on high. The chicken will make it's own juice...keep it!  The chicken will fall of the bone because it's sooo tender! YUM! After you are finished debone the chicken and remove veggies and place it in the leftover juice. I just put the whole crockpot in the fridge so I can put it out in the morning!
Finished product! 

Chicken n Dumplins:
Pull Crockpot out of the fridge and add enough water to almost fill it up. You want to save room for your dumplins. I add about 4 chicken bouillon cubs to mine to give it some taste. Let that cook all day on low. About 2 hours before you are going to eat...make your dumplins. (Thanks Jay)
2 Cups flour
1 tsp salt
4 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp. butter
1 c. milk
In a saucepan mix butter and milk until butter melts. Add to dry ingredients. Roll out on floured surface. Cut into about 1 inch strips and just toss those babies in the crockpot! I try to push them down into the soup a little to get them wet. TURN CROCKPOT ON HIGH for the last 2 hours and this is what you get!!
SO there you go...2 simple meals that are cheap!! Enjoy and let me know if you try it!! 

Friday, February 26, 2010

Couch Potato Update

Well...we are on week 7 day one out of 9 weeks total...and it's been tough for me! Running is SOO HARD for me! I HATE IT!!! Really! I hear people say...oh you will eventually love what I say! Let's be honest...I'm a short legged round girl...I look like 2 toothpicks with a big round olive on top...just sayin...not built for running.  But I'm pressing on to finish. A lot of times I start things and when they get difficult or I think I can't do it..and. I. Just. Quit! I know...can you say Prideful??
Let me just give you a "run down" on the "low down" of when I get on the treadmill...before I even step on it I am dreading it!!!!! As I start to run...honestly I think I'm going to hyperventilate...pass out...cry...whine...I think a few cuss words have came to mind a time or two and just about anything you can think of that says I DON'T WANT TO DO THIS!!! At first it wasn't so bad because we would walk for 3 for 5 minutes...then by week 6 we were running 15 minutes and walking 2. WHAT?!?! The whole time I am running I am having a conversation with I can't do this! Him: yes you it! Me: really...I can't! Him: Yes you can...keep going! This will go on for 30 minutes...over and over again. Many times after we are done I tell Matt on the way home...I'm more...and he your not...keep can do it...he's my cheerleader. That Guy is up to running 25 minutes without a break! WOW! I run 25 minutes...but take 3 one minute breaks still...but I feel that is HUGE for me so I am happy. 

See this isn't about's about me doing something that I couldn't do without Him. Stephanie finishing something that is hard and that she feels like she physically can't relying on Him to do it for me. Not giving up! It's about finishing strong. I am determined to start living my life like that. Not being scared or too prideful to say...THIS IS HARD...I might not be the best at it...but I will do it.

We are entering a 5k and will do it in a week. YIKES!! To be honest...I'm scared...but I know I will be fine. Not like it's going to kill me or anything! I will let you know how it goes. If you have any running tips feel free to share.
How about you? Are you challenging yourself to do something you feel like you "can't" do without God running along side of you? Do you have someone cheering you on? Press on...don't give up!

1 Corinthians 9:24- 
Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize?
So run that you may obtain it! 

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Bobby and Liz Reed

Meet our New Stone Canyon Campus Ministers...Bobby and Liz Reed! Is their family precious or what?
Bobby, Liz, Brady and Dawson
We are so excited to have Bobby and Liz on staff. Bobby grew up in our church. I can remember him as an ornery little squirt all the way up to being in the youth group. He was always up to something back of the fondest ?? don't know if that is the word...memories I have of him is standing on the back of a ski lift chair as I passed him on the other side about to have a HEART attack! Or maybe when I was about to make the big announcement that I was pregnant and he front of the group...I bet she is prego...oh my oh my...that Bobby Reed was something else. But I loved him even then! He was a leader...a solid kid. One you could count on. FCC is committed to raising leaders amongst our congregation, from our children's programs thru our adult's happening!  We have 6 people on staff (or their wives) that came up thru our programing @ FCC. That's just outstanding and I think testifies to our mission at our church. 
Now Bobby is all grown up and he has the most amazing heart for the lost and for growing the kingdom. I see his passion for reaching out and loving others and bringing them to a closer relationship with Christ.  You know in ministry you get a 2 for 1 deal and Oh and his wife Liz...her personality just lights up the room when she enters and  makes everyone she comes in contact with feel loved and that they have been friends for life! Liz also grew up in Owaso and came to our church sometimes. She also shares that passion for reaching the lost. I ask you to pray for The Reeds as they move from working in the business world to working in the church. It's not an easy transition and as many times as I say that...people will never understand that until they are in it for awhile. The possibilities are endless to what God can do thru this new campus. Again...I am just so thrilled to have them on staff. I know God has put the right person in place for the job. 
Welcome Bobby and Liz Reed!!! 

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Need Pruned to Produce?

I love to plant flowers and work in our Garden. I love to watch how you plant a grows and you get to enjoy the flower or the eat the vegetables. But as you know you don't just throw it in the ground and hope it grows. You have to water and fertilize it...pick the weeds and prune it when needed. Producing a harvest takes a lot of work...but it's worth it!
God is the best Gardener and He knows when it's time to prune things in your life. Sometimes He prunes many other things in our lives in order for us to produce more fruit for Him. Abiding in Christ produces fruit that remains...without Christ you can do nothing of eternal value. 
Do you have any "fake fruit" decorating your table? We do. It looks good from afar, but when you get up close you realize it's plastic...fake...and will never bear fruit. I think that is how I live somedays...I look good from afar, but when you get will see I'm not bearing fruit for Christ. But I'm trying...considering what I'm doing to produce a harvest for Christ. The last couple of years I think he has been pruning my sins that I have struggled with. I have clinged to some things that needed to be cut off. I was no longer producing fruit in those situations and He cut them off. WACK! OUCH that hurt! I have been whining about it for awhile too. But I am seeing him take me in directions that I would have NOT gone in if I had not been pruned. It has caused me to cling to Him and seek Him even more and to make sure I am producing fruit as a mom, wife, friend and follower of Christ. 
John 15:1-2
I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. 
John 15: 5-8
I am the vine, you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit, apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be given you. This is to my Father's glory that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. 

Do you need to be pruned? Are you producing fruit? 
Pray for me as I continue to be pruned and if you need me to pray for you...let me know. 

NJHS Induction/5 years?

Last Thursday Lauren was inducted into the National Junior Honor Society at the 7th grade center. In order to apply your grade point average has to be a 3.5 and then you have to apply for it by getting signatures of all the teachers/sponsors of activities you have been involved in. They had a little ceremony on Thursday night. She was one of the 172 students in her class to be inducted...there are 700 students in her grade so I think that is pretty good! She must get her smarts from Matt because I was never this good of a student! :) You have to earn points in NJHS by doing community service...which I think is great!! It teaches them how to be leaders in their community. Here she is before with some of her buds...
Shelby, Courtney and Lauren
Waiting to hear her name called...
Mr. Coke...her principal giving her the award
Smile for mom!

Her fans...Nana and Papa and the fam...

Lauren and Aubrey...had to take this of them actually dressed up!

I am so proud of her. I had a strange moment while we were there...they took a group picture of all the I watched them sitting there my mind fast forwarded about 5 years from Graduation. All the parents and family gathering...excited...taking pictures...I just stopped and realized I will be spending a lot of time with these people in the next 5 years. 5 YEARS short years!!! REALLY!! I kinda went into this little trance for a bit...not wanting to talk to anyone...just taking in the moment. We have made a lot of friends in this group of people...a lot of them go to our church. I look forward to creating lots of precious memories with each of these families.
Congrats Lauren! 

Monday, February 22, 2010

Grandma and Grandpa T came to visit!

Saturday Grandpa and Grandma Thomason came for a visit! We ate at Red Robin...yum! Then headed to the kids basketball games!
Grandpa Thomason and Jaden
The whole gang hanging out between games
We had a great time hanging out with them for the day. It was a wonderful surprise to see them! I had class that morning, but when I got home the kids showed me some of the goodies they had brought for them. Grandma had made some yummy chocolate chip cookies...she says they aren't her best ones...but my kids....and the big kid Matt didn't have any trouble eating some of them! :) Grandma works @ OSU so she brings Jaden some cool posters from there when she can. But this time she brought Jaden a picture signed by the one and only Pistol Pete! 
We need to get it framed for him. He is a big OSU fan! My kids love when their grandparents come and hang out for the day. It makes them feel loved and special! They always take us out to eat and that's a real treat because we don't go out much! Matt and I are thankful that our kids have grandparents that live close enough they can come visit for the day. Not many families in the ministry are blessed enough to have their family so close! So thanks Grandma and Grandpa Thomason for making the trip to Owasso to spend time with us! We really enjoy it and appreciate it! 
Apparently Gary (Grandpa) reads my blog everyday to keep up with our family... I had no idea! 
That just makes me feel loved! 

Friday, February 19, 2010

HBTU Krista!

Today is my sis-n-laws bday! I have blogged about Krista before... here. I always look forward to spending time with Krista. She and I are a lot alike and we both like to have fun! We met @ Ozark Christian College when I was a freshman and she was a sophomore. We lived on Goodman 3rd together. She was already dating Brian (Matt's bro) when I met her. Little did I know that we would have a lifetime friendship of being sister-n-laws. I actually went to Stillwater with her once and met Matt's family before Matt and I were even a thought! We became such a great friends that I was in their wedding..on my bday! At that time Matt and I were just friends...nothing else...though of course I secretly had the biggest crush on him...I kept that under wraps!
Krista grew up as a Preachers kid in Tyro, KS and I feel like she has such wisdom on how to raise kids in the ministry. When we are together I can let my guard down. I can talk to her about things no one else would ever get. Our times together are very precious to me. I can "unload" on her and she can do the same with me. Being married to brothers...even though they are very different in some ways...they are very much the same in other she gets my frustrations and understands where I am coming from on things. I think God specifically put Krista and I together as sis-n-laws...we work together well on holidays and trips back to Stillwater to see the family. Thru Krista and I being friends I think it has brought Matt and Brian's relationship closer also. I am so thankful for our "real" friendship. I honestly love our times together when we can sit and chat. She inspires know she just published a bible study this year! Take a is geared toward reaching the lost and those who are new in their faith.
She is a hard worker...loves and supports her husband. Is a fantastic mom...her kids are top notch amazing kids! She is frugal...if you knew what they lived on...well...let me just say...most of us wouldn't be able too with 3 kids. She has survived a tornado totally destroying her house while her and the kids sang praise songs in their basement and not a speck of dust touched the doorway of the room they were in!! That story still gives me goose bumps! She still sews her own clothes...cans her food...I mean...pretty much the Proverbs 31 lady...but dresses hip and is edgy! Anyway...just love and adore her. So grateful she is in my life. I would be lost without her at family gatherings! They are coming to visit in a couple of weeks...can't wait. I thank God for putting her in my life!!
Alexis (my niece), Lauren and Krista
Happy Birthday Krista!! 

I have subbed all week again. It's been fun. I am the vocal teacher at the 6th grade center.! LOL! I can't sing a lick! But that's ok...we watched a movie...there is a story there...but probably need to keep it to myself so I don't get anyone in trouble. Another lady came in for 2 days and played the piano and helped them practice their songs so that was good. I like subbing, but you know...I have noticed myself really wishing I had more time to get to know the kids. I want to know their struggles...their families and why they behave the way they do in class. Why they don't do their work...and don't really care if they get it done either. I feel like I need to wear a super woman cape and save them all. 6th grade is one of my favorite ages. I like when I sub more than one day in a class so I can get to know them better. I was on a panel @ Glimpse (our youth program) on Wednesday night and many of the kids I have subbed for were there. I think it shocked them to see me up there in another environment. But I was happy to see them there and then the next day have them in class. It opened up a lot doors for me to chat with them. I talked about a time when I was "not so into God" and how having people in my life to keep me accountable made the difference and what I learned from that time.
Lots of exciting things happening at FCC and in our lives. Working all week sure makes it hard for me to blog and to catch up on all my friends blogs...sorry if I haven't visited much this week. I have to prioritize the fam first and get some rest also or this old granny won't make it thru the day. Matt and I are getting up at 4:45 am to workout every morning so by 9:00 pm I am worthless!! I go to my 2nd photography class in the morning. Yeah! I will blog this weekend about some things that are happening that are coming up! Have a great day! Blessings!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Free Babysitting

When my kids were little I longed for a night out alone with my man...(still do) but when they are little it is harder to accomplish. You have to get a you trust who will love your kids and you have to pay them of course. Our budget was really tight when they were little so to spend $ on a babysitter...dinner and any kind of entertainment was something we just couldn't do very often. And I know a lot of you young families feel the same. I was blessed to have my mom around to help with our kids! But I always thought someday when our girls are old enough to babysit we are going to offer free babysitting once in awhile to help people out! 
 Now...I I am encouraging these moms to go out with their man...but with out childcare...that could be a hard task! SO here is what I'm doing...the first person to make a comment or respond to this post will get one free night of childcare from the Thomasons! Good luck! And I am thinking this will become something we do on a regular basis so if you don't win today...there will be other chances!! 

Monday, February 15, 2010

Happy Valentines day!

We woke up for church and it was snowing! Imagine that! Matt always leaves around 6:00 am for church and before he went he left this for his girls....
I love fresh flowers...roses are pretty...but they die so fast! These were so pretty!
Lauren's Roses
Brooke's Roses
Now those of you who really know Matt and I...know that this is huge for Matt. Being Mr. Romantic has not come easy for him in our marriage. One thing about my dad you need to know is...he always gave my mom great gifts for special occasions. I watched that my whole life and when I got married I expected the same thing...the only thing is...I married a guy who just didn't see that as a big deal or at least as big as deal as I did. I love to give gifts and I just couldn't understand why he didn't! I don't need big gifts or anything...just a card makes me happy. But over time I have learned that having a husband who shows me how much he loves me everyday...not just on a better than any gift I could ever get. AMEN! But you know...when I let it go...God took care of it for me. 
I was just so proud of him for giving the girls roses and a sweet card about how much he loves them. Knowing their daddy loves them will effect how they feel about how their "Father in Heaven" loves them. The flowers were from Matt and Jaden actually. Jaden's wife is going to be lucky...he loves to give gifts. Speaking of..he made me this lego sweet.
Brooke Made us all these cute cards! 
And Lauren bought Lunch for us from Captain Ds!! Yum!!
Nana brought us some yummy cupcakes and few other fun things!
We gave the kids little chocolate hearts...the love these things. For a $1 it just makes their day! My grandpa always had these at his house and they were fascinated with these.
And they LOVE Lindors Chocolate so I got them a think I spent a fortune by their reaction!
And People...this is a plate of Happiness for Matt Thomason! Steak...baked potato...Asiago cheese bread
All for you babe! :) 
And to top it off...Chocolate Covered Strawberries & Bananas!!! YUM!!!
The kids ate them up!
So we had a Fun day. As the kids get older things just seem to get "sweeter". Love spending time with them as a family playing Dogopoly (like Monopoly except with dogs) watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition and America's funniest Videos. Thank you Jesus for my sweet little Valentines. 


Be Mine...Always!

On Thursday Matt and I got to spend the day together hanging out! I love those days! We were going to eat @ one of our favorites that we save for special occasions...Carrabbas....but they don't open until 4:00! Geez! So we went next door to Abuelo's, which we like also!
They have a platter that we share and it is enough for both of us and then we take home enough to feed us both for another meal! It's huge! And it's only $14.99! So cheap to eat there!! And good!
We headed to Sams since we were in Tulsa to pic up a few things and he bought me some flowers there which I will show later. One of our goals this year has been to strengthen our marriage so we have made it a priority to go on a date or spend some alone time once a week. It might be going to Lowes and dreaming of things we want to do to our house or just sitting at Starbucks. We don't have to "go big" just to have a great time. Just being alone, enjoying each others company and growing in our love for each other. It's been great and I can definitely see benefits of remembering our "first love". If you are not taking the time to spend alone time it! I know when you have little ones it's just do it as you can. My kids are able to stay alone now or we go while they are in school so it's a little easier for us than it was when they were little. Just a couple of hours a week will make a huge difference! There is no one else I would rather spend the day with...I love you Matt Thomason!! 

Jaden's Valentines Party

Being the Homeroom mom is one of my favorite things about being a SAHM. I love planning it! You don't have much time so you have to make it simple! For the Valentines parties they just want to open their Valentines Cards and chat really by the time they get to the 3rd grade.
Jaden's box...he made it a couple of years ago and we have just reused it! OSU!
 So I got sugar cookies from Reasors...made pink and red frosting...bought sprinkles and red candy hearts and let them decorate their cookies. 
Mrs. Anderson is the best 3rd grade Teacher!! 
I made gift bags for the kids with all the goodies the moms sent!
We also made Sweetheart pencil toppers! I forgot to take a pic of them. We took pipe cleaners...foam shapped hearts that we wrote words like make conversation hearts then twisted the pipe cleaner around a pencil to make a topper. You can go here to see them on the Family Fun Website. 
It was fun! Glad I get to be a part of these times in my kids lives! They will be gone before I know it!!

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Class #1

I went to Apertures this morning and on my way I was praying that I would be able to grasp what they were saying and learn a lot. I was totally nervous to go to class. I haven't been a student in about 15 years. I am used to being the teacher so my role was switched today. The class started at nine so I arrived about 8:45ish so I wouldn't be late. And I sat there...and sat there in the parking lot. A few more cars came...and finally about 9:05 another lady and I started to chat. We had both signed up on the internet and no one had called us. I had called yesterday just to make sure what I suppose to bring to class...but hadn't received any other info beyond that. Which bugged me a say the least. So the lady and I agreed to sit there and wait until they opened at 10:00...and that's what I did. The employees arrived and we questioned them about the class and apparently the website is messed up and they didn't know we were coming. So Natalie (the owner) called her husband and he was there in a flash to start teaching us. Shoowee! I was stressing! I thought NO WAY did I just drive into Tulsa and sit here for an hour to just turn around and go home!  But you know...God always works out things for the good of those He loves. It was just 3 of us in the class and we got one on one time with him. It was fabulous! So much to tell you if you are into photography. I learned what Aperture is...ISO...and shutter speed and though I thought I knew a little something about each of them...apparently I really didn't...but I do know more than the other 2 so that felt good. I am the oldest in the class...LOL!!!  We are going to learn how to set each of them so they work together to give you the best picture possible! I actually HAVE homework! And I am excited to do the homework! Imagine that!! So thanks for all your prayers. It went great! I was totally into it and can't wait to learn more!!!!

Friday, February 12, 2010


I was able to get off of work to go to the Reveal. I wasn't sure if I should go or not...but it worked out so I went...I figured it was a once in a lifetime thing...and you know...HMF is one of my goals! As soon as I got there they pulled me along with about 20 other "blue shirts" down the street to the white tent where they made things. I had no idea what they were going to do with us...but I went. They put us in place and then we stood there...oh for about 2 hours...freezing!! I had to pee so bad!! But I knew as soon as I walked would all begin...whatever it was!  I did get to meet Eduardo and take a pic!
This is the "boss" guy with a major Boston accent! LOVE IT! He was the director! I want his job!
The bus...wish I had that on my Yellowstone trip!

Then next thing I know they say...Ok here is what's happening...the bus will pull up...Miranda Lambert and Sheryl Crow will come out...WHAT?!?! is exactly what I wanted to shout! Oh how I wish my girls were with me, because they are gonna kill me when I tell them this!  So...the bus pulls up Miranda and Sheryl come out and Ty and the other designers welcome them and we part the sea and they walk thru us! Worth the wait! Now..couldn't take any pictures then...sorry! You can't see the moment I met Miranda and Sheryl. Oh well. Just vision it in your mind. We had about 3 takes of it before they liked we got to do it several times...look for me there when you watch the show...I'm behind Ty...I promise I didn't touch him.
Afterwards they took us back to the house and put us next to the driveway to welcome the family home. So we sat there for another 2 hours...freezing until I couldn't feel my toes and shaking. Yah yah...I know...waa waa. It was worth it! I totally dig learning all about the behind the scenes of things so I loved it!! This is me waiting beside the driveway...I will be behind the bus when they show it.
So they practiced bringing in the limo about 4 times before they actually brought them in. And we filmed us yelling Move that Bus without the family coming know they cut and edit it all together! It was just fun seeing it all happen! This is the Gigantic Limo they came in!!
This is Callie...her wish was to help design a Makeover home...she has CF. Thought a lot about Haley P. when I saw her and her family.

Here is Sheryl and Miranda...I could take their pic here.
The Starkweathers...the best part of the whole experience...getting to see the joy on their faces.

What a blessing for their family. You can go here for their story.
It was a true blessing to be a part of this experience. I applaud Simmons homes for their hard work and giving spirit. Many blessings in your new home Starkweathers!!

"Like a Kid in a Candy Store"

I haven't had a chance to blog about my whole EMHE (Extreme Makeover Home Edition) yet. So I am going to try to catch up on a few here and there. 
Me and the kids...Matt came later...but it was so crowded we only got a glimpse of each other!
On Sunday we were invited to the Make A Wish Foundation Celebration...which I blogged about earlier. The decorations where so incredible!! WOW! Take a look at these balloons this lady made.  
This is Ty's
And Paige with hers
My girls with Paige. She is very sweet!
My friend Kim with the background!! LOL!

The Make a Wish kids painting pictures that were auctioned off the next night to raise money for the foundation...they were incredible!

Ty came in...we weren't really suppose to take pics..atleast with a flash...but my camera can pull it off and get a good pic anyway without a flash. He is using one of my friends cameras so I took a pic of him using her camera...:) I was behind a big TV.
This is the Candy Buffet that they set up or the kids. They could fill a whole bag with candy! It was so awesome and all that candy was so pretty! 
A bowl of M & Ms...just sayin..
Giant Lollipops!
My girls infront of the house. I left at 7:00 pm the night before and all that was there was a slab and when we got there @ 11:00 am the next morning...this is what they had accomplished! WOW!! 
I was so glad my kids got to experience the Make A wish day. It was good for them to see kids who desperately need a miracle and to be thankful for what they have.