Wednesday, August 19, 2009

A recipe for fall.... I know, wishful thinking for a Texan, huh?

Crockpot Pumpkin Butter

1 fresh Pumpkin, roasted, peeled, and pureed.
1 1/2 Tablespoons cinnamon (more if you like)
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 teaspoons cloves
1 teaspoon ginger
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1 1/2 to 2 cups packed brown sugar (or to your liking)


Combine all ingredients in your crockpot, stirring until well mixed. Cover and turn on high for the first hour or so. After that, turn to low for another 4 hours or until it looks like it is thickening. Leave lid off at this point and cook and stir (every few minutes) until it has a nice thick and spreadable consistency.

Cool mixture. Place in pint size freezer jars or plastic containers and place in your freezer until needed.

I guarantee you are going to want some of this as soon as the first good cold front arrives in your area! It is exceptionally good served on 6-week bran and pecan muffins, which I will post next time!


Oh! My daughter wanted you to know that she is with me as I type this post ;)

Friday, July 31, 2009

You Really Need One of These!

I mentioned a while back that I had a big announcement to make and then didn't make it. But today I will. And, no, I'm not pregnant ;)

Back in May I was contacted by the team to be a part of all of the wonderful things going on over there. As most of you know by now, I'm a big bargain lover and this was right up my alley, so I was thrilled to take on this role!

I am blogging at and helping to write the articles for the weekly newsletter, and for the Molly's Money Saving Digest. And I have a great deal to tell you all about today related to this anouncement:

Right now, Molly's Money Saving Digest - August 2009 is in the TOS store and already it is selling like hotcakes! The theme this time around is organization. Now, with the school year starting back up and the holidays (believe it or not) already looming ahead, don't you agree that it is time to get our homes re-organized? I know I am working on mine!

Hop on over there and take a look. I promise you will be happy you did. This Digest is chock full of ideas and tips to help you make the most of the time and resources you have on hand to get your home in tip-top shape for the Fall. What a relief: a friend who comes along to help us clearly think through how to take an overwhelmong task and break it down into manageable chunks! What an incredible resource!

Hurry, because they are going fast, really fast, and I don't want my friends to miss out!

By the way, you can see my article at the end of the Digest. I hope it leaves you inspired and ready to tackle the challenge before you, so that you too can have a fabulous Fall with your home ready to welcome guests and bless your family with all the comforts of home.

In our Lord's love and grace to you all,

Friday, July 03, 2009

T-Tapp Update

I only have time for a very brief update today as we are preparing for our summer vacation and I forgot to do this last week.

So, without further ado:

Over the last two weeks I started paying more attention to muscle activation on my lats, abdomen and waistline. What I mean by this is very simple; roll shoulders back, lock lats, ribs up, pull stomach up and tuck butt. Yes, I've been reminding myself to walk this way, sit this way, basically every position I am in I keep this posture.

Guess what happened? I dropped a size in five days because of the increased fat burning in my torso! I am now a size 6!!!!!. I lost a little over seven inches of fat in the last two weeks combined. About five of those inches have been in my torso and abs just from muscle activation techniques learned from doing T-Tapp!

This means that my grand total of fat lost over the last 6 weeks is right around 26 inches. I know, it seems too good to be true, but I'm living proof that it works, and works well!

I feel so good and I am getting stronger from the workouts and eating according to the two days on God-made foods, one day man-made food plan. So, basically, I eat as preservative and processed food-free as possible for two days, and then on the third day I can have that bad stuff (in moderation, of course!). This keeps me from wanting to binge, and really is just common sense. It also helps the body to eliminate the toxins from man-made foods easier.

I honestly cannot say enough good things about T-Tapp. I am stunned by the results I'm seeing already, and I've only been at it for 6 weeks!

Are you Tapping yet?

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Weight-Loss Wednesday (June 17 edition)

Well, week number four of my T-Tapp adventure has been completed and I am seeing more results than I thought I would after only a month of working out the T-Tapp way.

So far I have learned:

1. The better the form, the better the workout. This is so true! Rather than working harder, I work smarter. The better the form, the less reps I can do and still get better, quicker results. Case in point: I'm only doing the stomach exercises two reps every morning (and they don't hurt or malign my back the way sit-ups or crunches do, although I most definitely do feel "the burn") and I have the very definite beginnings of a "six-pack" muscle formation on my stomach! :)

2. Lots of water and walking correctly (see the Step-Away-The-Inches Walking Workout) pumps the lymphatic system and cleans the fat literally right off my body. I'm seeing the loss all over. This is wonderful.

3. Having to focus on many different muscles groups at one time really gives me mental clarity and lots of energy throughout each day.

4. Through doing the arm exercises in the Walking Workout and in the Total Workout, I am already developing long, lean muscle mass in my arms... something I thought I'd never see on my body type. All workouts I've done in the past only gave me bunched up, bulky muscle mass.

Funny story:

The other day I was out with a friend and her children. One of her little girls came up to me and said, "I can make a muscle!" She then proceeded to show me her curled up biceps. "Very nice!" I told her. She then asked me to make my muscle. So I did. I saw her eyes—and the eyes of my own children—get big and then I looked at my arm. I have a very long, lean, cut bicep appearing that I didn't know until that very moment was even there! I showed my hubby who then said, "WOW! You go, girl!"

Needless to say, that felt good!

5. Lift those ribs and lock those lats! It is helping to straighten my spine, correct posture problems I've had for a long time, flatten out my tummy(!), and I think it's making me taller.

I was ordering more Alfalfa from the T-Tapp office the other day and told them thanks for all they do. I told them my results for the last few weeks, and they have now asked me to write up a testimonial for their website and send in some pictures. Can you believe it? I never thought it would come to this when I started T-Tapping just a month ago!

You never know what will happen!

My results for this week:

I started T-Tapp a month ago at a very tight size 10 (truthfully, although I was ashamed to admit it at the time, almost a size 12), and am now in either very loose 10's or very comfortable 8's! The only exception to that is a couple pair of pants I have that I was pretty sure were sized wrong, from the time I bought them, and so they are still comfortable at a 10, although they are becoming looser.) I have more fat to lose, so I think it is possible with my body type and frame size that I could conceivably end up at a size 6 or even 4. Not sure yet at what point I will feel the healthiest, so I will keep on until I do, and then maintain the results with workouts about three times per week for cardiovascular health, conditioning, and energy. I will probably continue the walking around five times or so a week at that point because of the energy it gives.

I truly feel that this is one of the best things I have ever done for my family and myself.

My total fat loss this week: 2.75 inches. I know it doesn't sound like much, but what you don't see happening is the fact that I am building so much muscle (long and lean, I might add!) underneath the fat, so this is a net loss. So, really, I look like I lost more than that this week. I'm thrilled with what I am seeing!

My total loss for my first month: 19 inches!!!

Everybody say it with me; WOOOOOOO HOOOOOO!!!!!

Area of my body that saw the greatest improvement: My pecs and lats as well as my stomach.

Oh yeah, by the way, I did grow about half an inch in height, too!

If you need more inspiration to T-Tapp along with me, watch this video:

Click on the link right above the first picture of her on the left where it says "new video."

Praise the Lord for His goodness to me and for giving me the wherewithal to stick to it!

Have you started T-Tapping yet?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Weight-Loss Wednesday

Hello all!

Well, I did my weekly T-Tapp excercises and did well!

I did notice this week that I learned more about proper form and I am feeling stronger as a result. The T-Tapp form is what makes it so unique.

I was able to correct, just a couple of days ago, a few places in the Total Workout where I was not doing the excercises properly because I was used to arching my lower back instead of keeping it straight with my tail turned under. This is really good because it protects my back and I receive the added benefits in the muscle activation which will only aid me in future inch loss!

I was going to begin walking on my "off" days from the workouts, but a few scheduling problems prevented that until two days ago. I am happy to report that in doing the Step-Away-The-Inches-Walking-Workout, I have noticed more loss over just the last couple of days.

So, without further ado.....

My total inch loss for week #3:

4.25 inches!!!

This adds up to 16.25 inches in the last three weeks of doing T-Tapp. Those inches are gone from my body, my heart, my lungs, all over! Almost a foot and a half!!!

I can feel the difference as my energy increases every few days. This is such a blessing for my family as they reap the benefits too! I feel more hormonally balanced as well which contributes to a much better state of mind when stressful situations arise. Boy, am I glad about that! Everyone knows what a nut-case I am! :)

Another added benefit was that over last weekend, I went shopping for a swimsuit for our family trip to the beach next month. I actually had fun shopping for a swimsuit for the first time since I was in my teens! My muscle tone and loss of fat made me feel more confident in swimsuits for the first time in over twenty years!

I didn't buy one swimsuit. Nope, I bought four!!!!

Have you begun to question whether you need to do T-Tapp yet? I'm telling you, it's worth it!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Weight-Loss Wednesday (OK, it's Thursday, but I'm getting closer to posting this on Wednesday every week!)

T-Tapp update:

I just finished week #2 and my results are in.

I lost 5.25 total inches of fat off of my body this past week!!! And that is from only working out every other day now!

Altogether that's a total of 12 inches (yes, 1 FOOT!!!) of fat off of my body! My heart/ blood pressure are already reaping the benefits of the workouts which are getting the fat off of my upper body faster than anything else I've ever tried.

My troubles with Acid Reflux and IBS have also improved greatly. I have suffered with those symptoms for almost 6 years now and I've been on numerous medications as a result of it with minimal results and the need to move up to something stronger every so often. The side effects on my body are dangerous. Now I am happy to report that I have dropped two of the medications I took at night to control my symptoms! I simply don't need them anymore.

I am noticing also that I am able to keep better form and balance when doing the T-Tapp workout now, probably due to better spinal alignment from staying consistent with it for two weeks. As a result of this better spinal alignment, I noticed this week that I am taller... not sure how much taller yet, but I will measure this week and report back on that later.

My energy has improved as well.... which is HUGE to me because I was lacking in that department severely for years now.

Concerns/new areas to work on this week:

-Continue to work on balance and form.

-Begin walking again more consistently. T-Tapp recommends walking in addition to the workouts. Whenever I have walked in the past, the extra weight literally melts off of me, so I'm hoping it will again.

BTW, I went swimming with my children and a dear friend yesterday. I actually fit into a size 8 swimsuit, and felt good about the way I looked in it! That's big for me because I've never felt comfortable in swimsuits. The muscle tone that is beginning to show is a big benefit of doing T-Tapp, my husband has commented on it a number of times this week. You know it's working when others can see it too!

I gotta tell ya', I'm really impressed with this program because I can see how it treats the entire person, not just merely the outward appearance (although that is a nice benefit). I now know that I am a combination body type bordering on a short torso. Funny, until I did the measurements that Teresa Tapp walks you through step-by-step in her book, I always thought that I had a very short torso. I don't. I am actually right in the middle range for torso length. This means there is a difference between what my max is on certain exercises than that of a person with a longer torso.

Knowing this translates into freedom to workout to my personal max and reap better results. Additionally, I am not in pain because I am doing the exercises correctly for my body type. It has relieved the persistent pain I've had in my left hip and lower back since having my fourth child almost four years ago. This has done wonders for my energy and stamina throughout each day.

Bottom line, after doing T-Tapp for just two weeks, I feel great and the results, to me at least, are proof that this works, and that I can be my personal best and enjoy the body the Lord has given me, and use it to His glory each and every day because I am not in pain, and I am regaining strength through building longer, leaner muscle.

Praise God!

Are you working out? How are your workouts going?

Friday, May 29, 2009

Weight-Loss Wednesday... OK, ahem... Saturday

After seeing this post, I decided to research this T-Tapp thing I'd been hearing about.

After reading all that I could get my hands on with regards to T-Tapp, I decided it was time to try it. The success stories were plentiful... many coming from ladies who had multiple births and wanted to get into shape again, not merely for looking good, but simply to feel good and treat the body as the "temple of the Holy Spirit" (1 Corinthians 6:19) that it truly is.

All I wanted was a program that wouldn't make me buy prepackaged, processed foods, nor claim that I could look like a supermodel after having four children and only being five feet four inches tall with a shorter torso. I wanted a boost in my energy, clarity of mind, and to fight off the dark cloud of possible inherited heart disease, high blood pressure, etc., and the Reflux and IBS I deal with daily.

I wanted to be here to enjoy helping my children train up their children in "the nurture and admonition of the Lord" and watch them pass their faith in Christ on to their children and their children's children.

So... I ordered it. Happy Mother's Day to me!!

I just finished my "boot camp" as T-Tapp calls it. This is where you determine how many sizes you want to lose and work out so many consecutive days before you switch to an every other day cycle.

The results of my ten day bootcamp? I'm losing inches of fat all over and getting more energized everyday. I am very surprised (pleasantly) at the results of my first ten days. My stomach has flattened out so much that I am about to drop a clothing size already.

I was so skeptical that it could work that the day before I started working out, I bought a pair of size 10 jeans that were a bit snug, but I hoped that within a month of doing T-Tapp, I could fit into them more comfortably. Well, I've surpassed that and am about to retire these jeans and move down a size.

And these results are typical with the T-Tapp work out.

I know, it sounds too good to be true, doesn't it?

The way it works is the interesting part. She uses "leverage isometrics" and working many muscles at once to get more done at one time. It's the multi-tasking work out... right up this homeschooling mom's alley! I can't remember the last time that I didn't have to multi-task to get everything done.

What Teresa Tapp has done is she has figured out how to make the body work smarter, not harder and get better results for it. She uses your own body as the machine for strengthening excercises, so you don't need weights, machines, or much space at all. I do this in the mirror of my bathroom, people! Four to five square feet of space and less than an hour each morning initially, then only fifteen to thirty minutes a day after that is all you need.

She also tells you not to weigh in the first few weeks because you are building muscle and losing fat. Since muscle is heavier than fat, it will show on the scale. Instead, She tells you to do an initial measurement on yourself before you start the program. Every week I will measure myself and report my total inch loss to you so you can see how I'm doing. If any of you are also doing T-Tapp, please comment and let me know how you are doing. We can keep each other encouraged along the way!

What has made T-Tapp different for me is the fact that Teresa Tapp cares about making sure that each person who does her workouts realizes her own maximum potential, not the potential of a sixteen-year-old runway model who has never had stretch marks or loose skin in her life.

My total inch loss for week one:

drum roll please......

6.75 inches!!!! That's fat burned off my body. Gone gone gone!!!!

No wonder my jeans don't fit any more ;)

Now this is all of my measurements added together after only one week of T-Tapping (and no, there is no Tap-dancing involved ;)!!

I can tell you this: I feel great! And I'm content with getting to my personal best and loving the body the Lord gave me... "for I am fearfully and wonderfully made."

My body is the Lord's creation and I want to treat it as such.
Keep checking back in to see how I'm doing. Maybe you will find inspiration to feel your best so you can give your best back to the One who gave all for us.

His grace and love from my heart and home to you!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Learning About Forgiveness From My Preschooler

"Mommy, Sissy took my baby doll and won't give it back!"

"Did you ask her sweetly to give it back to you?"

"Yes, but she won't do it."

"Alright, go tell Sissy to come talk with Mommy."

In comes my three, almost four-year old.

"Did you take Sissy's doll?"


"Did you ask her for it?"


"Well, honey, if you didn't ask, that's called stealing. Does Jesus want us to steal?"

Bursting into tears, "No!"

"That's right, sweetie, the Bible says: 'Thou shalt not steal', doesn't it?"

"Yes!" she says, crying harder.

"Honey, are you sorry for stealing from your sister?"


"Well, you need to go tell Sissy you are sorry and ask for her forgiveness, don't you?"

"Yes, I will Mommy. I'm toe torry for doing dat! I'm toe torry for disobeying you! I'm toe torry for disobeying Jesus!"

"Well, I forgive you, and I know Jesus does, too, sweetie. Now go and tell Sissy."

A few moments pass and she comes back to tell me that she talked with Sissy. I asked her if Sissy forgave her and she said "yes," but she is still crying hysterically.

"Honey, you have been forgiven! I am glad you have such a repentant heart over your sin, but do you understand that Jesus, Mommy, and Sissy have all forgiven you totally and completely? It is over and your sin has been cast far, far away from you. Jesus doesn't even remember your sin any more! Isn't that wonderful?"

"Yes, Mommy, but I'm toe, toe torry!"

"I know you are, dear, but you need to forgive yourself now. Jesus doesn't want you to hold onto that guilt... Instead, He wants you to rejoice! He wants you to praise Him and be joyful! When He died on the cross for your sins, He did it for all of your sins! You can be happy now!"

Do you ever do this? I know I do.

Berating ourselves for sin that has already been forgiven is so easy to do. Letting the enemy hang that sin over our heads and remind us of it constantly—succumbing to the guilt—is not an acceptance of forgiveness. It is, rather, a hanging onto the very thing Christ died to eliminate: our debt.

Part of the Christian life is coming to grips with the freedom we have been given in Christ. It is done. He said, "It is finished!" He meant it. When we accept that gift freely, we need to live it freely as well.

Let go of the guilt! Rejoice! Your Saviour has paid it all! Live in the fullness of His joy! It is His gift to you forever, if you are His! And to be His, all you can do is believe that He finished it for you, rest in it, and cease striving to earn it by constantly trying to add to His free gift through wallowing in grief. Godly grief over sin lasts for a little bit, but it does not hang on to us for sin has lost its death-grip on us when Christ uttered the words, "IT IS FINISHED!"

REJOICE in this gift you have been given! Rather than wallow around in grief, turn your mourning into dancing, praise, and adoration of the One Who has done it all. All for you.

"Honey, let's turn on some praise music, get the hymnals, pick a song, and thank Jesus together for dying on the cross for our sins. What song do you want to sing with me to bless Jesus?" This I said while holding her close to my heart.

Your Saviour does the same for you...

Extravagant love. Extravagant grace. It is yours. Revel in it!