3 Months Since the Move: Snakes, Pumpkins, and Smiling

baby snake

Baby snakes have been hatching around our house. *Shudder*

The other day we went outside, and Joshua said, “Hey! Mom! Look a snake!”

That is not what you want to hear first thing in the morning.

But then I saw it.

“Is that a worm?”

“No! Look how it moves!” Joshua insisted.

“Yeah, yeah, you’re right, but that has to be a baby snake.”
By that time, all the brothers had arrived. Caleb grabbed a tennis racket, and well….poor baby snake. But you see, when you don’t know what kind of snake it is, you have to kill it. Better the snake than your children.


Caleb the snake slayer

Okay, one baby snake, killed quickly. I didn’t worry too much more about it….

brown snake

Until a week later, when I found a slightly bigger one.

In my life time I have spared almost zero seconds of thoughts on snakes, snake species, or what to do about them. I left them alone. They left me alone. We were good.

I was out in the backyard with barefoot John David. John David is ALWAYS barefoot, when I spotted this thing in my grass. I might have freaked out (in my head) a little bit.

As I mentioned before I don’t have a lick of knowledge about snakes. Therefore, I decided it was best to assume this one was deadly, a poisonous Copperhead for sure.

I closely examined this animal, which seemed to be frozen in place, and then I whisked JD out of that grass and into the house where I proceeded to quickly google copperheads. I found a few pics of infant copperheads that looked very similar to this. So I decided that this one must die, just to be safe. My kids play back there all the time.

“I MUST SAVE THE CHILDREN!!!!” I thought wildly. It’s time to be a hero!!!  This is my moment!!! I looked frantically for a weapon.

Alan has hidden all of the shovels from our children because they like to use them to dig holes, so I had to settle for a puny fireplace shovel. I made JD stay on the porch while I bravely headed out with my pathetic weapon choice.

This was so hard for me! Aside from the occasional spider, I’ve never killed anything in my life!! But I knew that if it were a copperhead, I could not let it live, so I took that shovel and beat that tiny defenseless snake against a rock. In my mind, I was like Joan of Arc or something.

It was traumatizing for both me and the snake, but at least I did live, while I am both proud and sad to tell you, tiny snake did not.


The harmless, tiny, docile brown snake: eats worms and such

I came back in and Google-searched a little harder. Next time I need to know what I’m dealing with. Apparently, snakes are a common occurrence here.

I was both relieved and guilty-feeling to learn that this was actually just a harmless little brown snake, extremely common in the Atlanta area.  Also, it’s a protected species in Georgia. Ummm….oops….yeah…okay…protected unless the killer thinks it is poisonous and then I can assure you the killer makes no apologies.

This site was masterful at explaining how to tell the difference. By the way, in Australia, there is a snake species also called a brown snake that is deadly. So know your snakes according to where you live!!!

Here’s the site you should check out, in case this happens to you! Juvenile Copperhead Vs. Brown snake

See, you CAN learn important things on the internet!


Thankfully, there are also many advantages to moving here. First and foremost, we get to be there for family events. Remember that wedding where I couldn’t decide what to wear? Here are a few pictures.

By the way, when I went to get dressed that day, my hips were so swollen I couldn’t wear any of my regular dresses. Arthritis is a terrible disease.


Here’s my handsome little man, wearing the same outfit his daddy wore at his age, smocked by his great-grandmother.


Our favorite family of all red-heads


Alan, reunited with his college friends


I found this bench at a yard sale for $10!!! I was so excited, I bought TWO of them!


The kids have all been taking turns being sick. I held him in my arms as he slept and enjoyed it so thoroughly.


We had an “all night party” with Caleb, the night before his EEG. See, he was supposed to be sleep deprived. We only managed to keep them awake until 12am. They all had a contest to see who could stay up the latest. I lost.

The EEG results were normal, and Caleb is now coming off of Keppra gradually!!!  This is very exciting for our family. However, we are still watching him closely, as he may have more seizures as he coming off of the medication. In which case, he’ll have to go right back on Keppra. Seizures are not good for your brain, so this matters.




The boys are making more and more friends all the time. How adorable are they, playing with this family of three boys, exactly their ages?

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Since it is fall, we’ve been collecting pumpkins. Caleb likes to draw faces on the pumpkins and gourds.

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I think I’m going to go ahead and create our thankful tree this week. After all, it is fall already, and there is something about a constant reminder to be thankful that I need in my life. Don’t you?

We’ve been back in the South for over three months now, and after 7 years of living away, it’s an adjustment! At first, I was bogged down in the signing up for this, signing up for that, finding doctors, finding a grocery store, and using my GPS just to find my way home. During that time, it was hard to even smile. 

And by the way, Southerners, I am convinced, smile way more than other people do. I like that about us, but at first I did not appreciate it. It got on my nerves, bigly. (hehe)

My thoughts went like this, “Ugh, we got four boys dressed and loaded in the van, made three wrong turns to get here, and now everyone expects us to look happy. What kind of sick joke is this?”

Moving is hard, y’all!!  We don’t know which streets are parallel and which ones curve. When you have four kids talking to you, it’s super easy to miss a turn.

And the heat! Oh, man was it hot!

Thankfully, fall is finally here. I need to spend today digging through bins for toddler pants.

I’ve met so many new people, and I’m starting to get everyone’s name right on the first try. Plus, I have just enough comfort level now that I’m starting to smile again.

Moving truly takes a year to fully settle in. We’re 1/4 of the way there.

Today we are thankful. Thankful for fall, for Google who tells us when to worry and when to not worry about a snake, thankful for adorable children, and thankful for a Father in Heaven who made us and loves us.

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.  Psalm 28:7









Fun Way to Teach the True Meaning of Christmas

Don’t forget to enter the giveaway. Only 4 days left!!!!!



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Fun Way to Teach the True Meaning of Christmas, with Giveaway!

Fun Way to Teach the True Meaning of Christmas
Fun Way to Teach Your Kids, with Giveaway

This post is sponsored by seedsfamilyworship.com. They are here to teach the Bible through songs.

John David is 3 years old, but he already knows that Christmas equals presents. He is also fully in love with Santa Clause, aka the King of Christmas. And in all fairness, who wouldn’t love a man who shows up once a year just to give you all the things you wanted???? Sign me up for that!

music and DVD giveaway

My sweetie-pie professional product tester. He accepts payments of hugs and toy airplanes.

So you might be wondering why I’m talking about Christmas in October, but the thing is that if you are planning a children’s ministry or want to teach your kids an awesome song to perform at Christmas for their grandparents, then now is the time to order your material.

We got this lovely Christmas DVD and accompanying CD in the mail called Seeds of Christmas. By the way, it’s also available digitally if you don’t want to have to fool with a hard copy DVD and CD.

I tried it out the first time with just John David because he’s the only guinea pig hanging out with all day while I’m working. He is also a lover of all things music. Our conversation went something like this:

Me: Oooo, John David, I have a new Christmas movie for us to watch. It has songs! (JD loves songs.)

JD: Yay!!!  It has Santa Clause?

Me: Well, um, I don’t know. Let’s watch it. We’ll see what it has. I’ve never seen it before, but I do know it’s Christmas.

JD: Yay!!!

Some of the songs are fast, but most of them are slower, very worshipful. I’m going to include a preview below for you to see what I mean.

Music and DVD Giveaway

Every single song line is a Bible verse.

We watched it without hand motions, but if you are teaching a class or your kids happen to like doing the motions, that’s all on there for you. I have four BOYS. They dislike singing in public, and they especially dislike hand motions.

The last video on this disc is BEAUTIFUL. They were all good, but this one was my favorite. It has that wow factor you would want for a program, if you are performing these.

Music and DVD Giveaway

We are only using it at home, but I just adored that last video, called “Joy.” You can’t tell from the preview online just how powerful that video actually is. Watch it without the hand motions, and focus in on the whole Bible story of Jesus’s birth played out in front of you.

So this is what sold me on this video:

We were watching the Joy video at the end, and JD could not stop asking questions!

“Who’s that?”

Music and DVD Giveaway

JD had to know who each little figure at the bottom was and what they did.

“That’s Mary and Joseph, the parents of Jesus.”

“Who’s that?”

“That’s Jesus.”

“Jesus died.”

“Yes, but this is when Jesus was born. Jesus is God’s son.”

“He died?”

“Well, yes, later on, but this is about when he was born. See, he was a baby, born in a manger in a barn. Christmas is really about the birth of Jesus, not about Santa Clause and what we can get from him.”

I can’t remember the entire conversation, but you get the idea. This opened the door to talk about these important things. That’s right. Christmas isn’t just about presents. What a great reminder.

When the video was over, JD actually asked to watch it again!

Now here’s the other unusual thing about this company, Seeds Family Worship. All of their songs are 100% Bible verses. There are no fillers or added words. They are literally just singing the Bible!!

They call it family worship because their stuff isn’t just for kids or just for adults. Anyone can enjoy it and learn. You could get the music to help you learn scriptures! You could use it to help teach your children memory verses. You could even use it for your Bible class or children’s choir. I am impressed with the versatility.

Click here to go to their website and see a preview!

I was excited to learn that Seeds Family Worship is also a touring group. They are traveling performers, and because I have readers in Bowling Green, Kentucky let me tell you: they will be in your city in January. I found this on their website:

Bowling Green, Kentucky: God’s Awesome Word Event, Living Hope Baptist Church, January 8. You can click here for more info on that.

Fun Way to Teach the True Meaning of Christmas


Two more pieces of good news:

  1. The Christmas Set is on sale now for $19.99. You get BOTH the DVD and the CD for that, so it’s an awesome deal.
  2. We’re giving one set away!!!!  Wahoo!!! Click to enter below:                                  a Rafflecopter giveaway

10 Truths about Parenting Toddlers and Preschoolers


A couple of months ago, I began working for Monterey Premier’s blog, Engaging WorkLife. This is an exciting opportunity for me that has the fingerprints of Heaven all over it. This job arrived exactly when I needed one.

So now sometimes my articles are over there instead of over here, but I will always post a link to let you know. Today’s is seriously worth reading. You will laugh, and you will nod. If you have kids or ever have had kids, you can relate to this one.

Here’s a snippet, from Truth #2:

Oh, and horrifyingly gross things will happen during potty training that you may never want to admit to a single soul. And that’s okay. But you should admit it to other toddler parents because your misery is hilarious to others. Even the perfect parents. You should tell the perfect parents, and gradually some of their less-than-perfect tales will start coming out too.

It’s funny. Go read it. Just click here.


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