Topless painting.

This morning Moses expressed to me that he had some creative juices that he was itchin' to we broke out some paints he got for Christmas. He was enthralled...he enjoyed painting on himself as much as he enjoyed painting on the paper. I think he might have tasted the blue...what do you think?
How could you not have fun when your paints smile at you?
He is a musher and proud of it. It wasn't until he was almost done that he realized that he had gotten some on his hands but he loved that too. He is also back to being my sweet boy...all better. I found the culprit of his poo-poo-ness the corner of a canine was just poking out of the skin today...I hate teething. :)

Does anyone have any simple and fun toddler activities that they would like to share???
I didn't get AS much done this weekend as I had hoped for but I did get a few sets of towels on over and get some if you have been wanting them...they go fast. :) I also got some fun pears these. And two new bags are in the shop...I tweaked the pattern and made it mine...go see. :)
And new house tags are moving into the shop.

Today has been a much better day than yesterday. Thanks to all of you who emailed me and shared your stories, offered encouragement or just wrote to say Happy Mothers Day. I have the best readers! Happy Monday to you all!! :)

The ups and downs of Mother's day...

Mother's day, like some other holidays tends to leave me with a bitter taste in my mouth. For reasons that I can't really go into here because as I have said before, I don't know who reads this blog and I am not out to hurt anyones feelings. On one side I am thankful to be a mom, always. I know so many with the desire to be one that can't be and that makes me all the more thankful that being a mom came so easy to me...physically (Moses was conceived without trying), emotionally (I am overwhelmed with love for my son and I have a great support in my husband) and spirtitually (God seems to be there in all aspects of being a mom(even if I do sometimes wonder where He is)). I love all parts of being a mom. I can honestly say that. I am thankful to be home with Moses and love my "job" as homemaker and caretaker of my family. I take great pride in being a stay at home mom and will defend that position always.

On the other hand....(if you would like to read this paragraph you can email me at

I think God knew that I needed a little love yesterday...while out on a walk with Moses...Hearts everywhere...
God is always trying to talk to's up to us to try to listen.

So to all you fantastic mothers out there...Happy Mother's Day! You are a blessing to your family, to your children and your children's children. You were hand selected to mother the children that you have and don't you ever forget that! God sees every selfless act, every time you put your needs aside to care for one of His children, He takes note and it makes His heart happy to see it. He sees your toiling, your stress, your love and knows each hope you have for your children. He is proud of you and He loves you.

To Tidy Up a Bit

First, if you click on Howie Long's name in the previous post you can read about how I literally RAN into Howie Long and failed to recognize him...that may make the fact that I ignored his son a little more funny to you. :)

Second, please take a minute and go here to read the importance of commenting to bloggers. I think she puts it very well. I heart commenting...and it really is like a payday to us bloggers. :)
Third, I am all done with these! An order for a sweet family member...not shown is the other order for another sweet family member that is also done!
Fourth, here is the box of goodies I got from Mrs. Scottie over at Tiddlywinks. We traded. I love me some trading and do it a lot but I don't mention it usually because I don't want to put the other person in an awkward know? But I will say that 75% of the things I get off of Etsy is done through made Christmas so fun this year...anyway...since she mentioned it on her blog I thought it would be ok to mention here...if she is still up for trading I would go ask because you are sure to get some fun stuff. :)
Fifth, I got these and some other goodies from my SIL the other day...cute little leather flowers...can't wait to use them! Thank you CC!!
Sixth, Mrs. Amy went and bought me this paper and then wouldn't let me pay for it...she even included chocolate and goldfish for Moses in the package. :) He was so excited to get his own little box of them and I am excited for this YuMmY paper! Thank you Amy!

Seventh. One of the main reasons I love living in Virginia is that in general we do not suffer with extreme weather of any sort. The worst that we usually get is some heavy rain or wind as a result of a hurricane...but generally nothing to get excited about. I like that. Last night was the first time I was ever afraid for my safety because of weather. From roughly 8-11pm or so we were under Tornado WARNING! With crazy thunderstorms, heavy rains, wind and all that mess. I was heart raced the whole time, until they took down the Tornado warnings...not watch mind you but Warning! I was so scared that I made Doug come up with a plan with what we will do as soon as they warn us to take cover...who will go get Moses (both of us), where will we go (downstairs bathroom). I am just glad that he was home and not closing like he usually does on Thursdays...I would have been a mess. I was terrified and hardly slept at all last night. This is not the Virginia I am used to.

Eighth, someone anonymous asked if I could do a sign/card for them with a specific verse on it...please contact me via Etsy to discuss. :)

Ok done. :) Happy Friday!

Crystal is once again an idiot...but this time to a lesser degree.

So last night we went to Five Guys for dinner. After Five Guys Doug went and put our drinks in the car and Moses and I made our way to Barnes and Noble. Doug gets back and the conversation goes like this:

Doug: Did you see Chris Long eating on the porch of the Italian place?
Crystal: Who?
Doug: Chris Long.
Crystal: Oh Howie Long's son? No where?
Doug: At the Italian place.
Crystal: Nope.
Crystal: Doug I hope that the next time I see someone famous, you are around to point him out to me.
Doug: You mean like when Jesus comes back?

Doug is funny.

I love that man. Just last week he helped the violinist from Dave Matthews Band find some Leggos for his son. I repeat, once again, that I would not know a famous person if they came up and introduced themselves.

More later...included my traumatizing night involving tornado warnings and watches.

The things you never thought you would do...

Today has sucked. Let's just be honest about that upfront. It didn't start off too bad mind you...considering that yesterday Moses developed the worst diaper rash of his life and suffered with it through the night...I prayed and begged and pleaded with God to heal that cute little bum...and this morning it looked so much better! We even went out and got our errands home about 11am and spent the next one hour solid changing dia-rear know the kind. Change a diaper, walk away, smell something, change another diaper, walk away, smell something...something like that. Only these are diaper rash diaper changes, so you can't just change and have to remove exploded into poopy diaper, rinse bum with water, pat dry, rinse , pat, rinse, pat, air dry for as long as the boy will stay in one place, apply half-inch of butt cream, re-diaper and repeat. For an HOUR. Repeat a couple hours later. Add to that the fact that he puked into my cupped hands only because he filled his mouth overflowing with goldfish and because he has Doug's gag reflex. Oh yes. That kind of day. Which got me thinking about all of the things I have done since becoming a mother that I never ever thought about...or cared to. Here are a few:
1. Apply cream directly to someones crevice, happily.
2. Help someone poop (pushing that day was not cutting it for him...nothing like knees to the chest to get things moving)
3. Be pooped on.
4. Have vomit deposited into my hands, hair, ears, eyes, nose and every article of clothing possible.
5. Ditto for poop.
6. Ditto for spit-up, drool, puke, dribble, pee (almost forgot pee) and snot. Yes, they are all different.
7. Not mind getting up every few hours with a baby.
8. I won't even get into labor and delivery.
9. Discuss poop with an adult in a non-humorous way(I would never do this in a humorous way) what color, what shape, how much, when, where, how?
10. Throw a binky across the room.
11. Not care about having that perfect body.

Where is God in all of this mess? I'll tell you where. He is in it so much that I can do it, write about it, laugh about it, talk about it and move on. I can't see His finger directly but I know He is there. I can feel it in the Joy of being a mom, even through all the mess. As I looked through some of Moses first photos to scan in for this post all the frustration just melted away and I remember how I can do all of these things. There is nothing good in me except Jesus. And that is how I do it. I don't know how you could do it without him.
Ok now you...let's hear what you have done since becoming a mother that you never thought about before?

Above are some of Moses' first pics...note the dark hair and perma-mohawk that he had for his first few weeks. :) LOVE LOVE LOVE this precious boy.

The birthday boy was pleased. :)

And who wouldn't be? We had streamers...Balloons...
Mile high strawberry cake...thanks for the inspiration Meg!!
Doug LOVED it! :)
He even got candles. He felt special and loved. Mission accomplished. :) This is a man among men who works hard for his family and deserved all I could do and more!
This is what he wanted for dinner...chicken francaise. It is super yummy and is the recipe in case you want to try it too. :)


  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 pinch garlic powder
  • 1 pinch paprika
  • 6 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can chicken broth
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 6 slices lemon, for garnish
  • 2 sprigs fresh parsley, for garnish


  1. In a shallow dish or bowl, mix together the egg and juice of 1/2 lemon. In another shallow dish or bowl mix together the flour, garlic powder and paprika. Dip chicken breasts in egg mixture, then flour mixture.
  2. Heat butter or margarine in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken breasts and cook until golden on each side.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix together broth and juice of 1 lemon, and pour mixture over chicken in skillet. Reduce heat to medium low and let simmer for about 8 minutes.
Here is something else you should try if you haven't already...corn on the grill a la Crystal. :)
Line a pan with that wonderful non-stick in shucked corn, sprigs of Rosemary or is that Thyme...add a few pats of butter and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on grill on low heat...turning the corn often...until it looks like this:That is not burnt...that is yummy!!And just some pics of pretty things in my Rhododendron bush is beautiful this hydrangea is going to bloom soon too!!!
And these happy little flowers are popping up too. :) Love all the things growing so well for me this year. :)
Still working my bum many ideas in my head just aching to get out...a fun birthday bag, long legged chickie...and more...I am getting there...will you hang in there until I do? :)


I stole this from Brown Eyed Fox but it got me laughing so many times that I wanted to make sure you saw it! More later but enjoy this for now. :)

"Why God made moms"
answers given by elementary school age children:

Why did God make mothers?
1. She's the only one who knows where the scotch tape is.
2. Mostly to clean the house.
3. To help us out of there when we were getting born.

How did! God make mothers?
1. He used dirt, just like for the rest of us.
2. Magic plus super powers and a lot of stirring.
3. God made my Mom just the same like he made me.
He just used bigger parts.

What ingredients are mothers made of?
1. God makes mothers out of clouds and angel hair and everything nice in the world and one dab of mean.
2. They had to get their start from men's bones.
Then they mostly use string, I think.

Why did God give you your mother and not some other Mom?
1. We're related.
2. God knew she likes me a lot more than other people's moms like me.

What kind of little girl was your Mom?
1. My Mom has always been my Mom and none of that other stuff.
2. I don't know because I wasn't there, but my guess would be pretty bossy.
3. They say she used to be nice.

What did Mom need to know about dad before she married him?
1. His last name.
2. She had to know his background. Like is he a crook?
Does he get drunk on beer?
3. Does he make at least $800 a year?
Did he say NO to drugs and YES to chores?

Why did your Mom marry your dad?
1. My dad makes the best spaghetti in the world. And my Mom eats a lot.
2. She got too old to do anything else with him.
3. My grandma says that Mom didn't have her thinking cap on.

Who's the boss at your house?
1. Mom doesn't want to be boss, but she has to
because dad's such a goof ball.
2. Mom. You can tell by room inspection. She sees the stuff under the bed.
3. I guess Mom is, but only because she has a lot more to do than dad.

What's the difference between moms and dads?
1. Moms works at work & works at home, & dads just go to work at work.
2. Moms know how to talk to teachers without scaring them.
3. Dads are taller & stronger, but moms have all the real power 'cause
that's who you got to ask if you want to sleep over at your friend's.
4. Moms have magic. They make you feel better without medicine.

What does your Mom do in her spare time?
1. Mothers don't do spare time.
2. To hear her tell it, she pays bills all day long.

What would it take to make your Mom perfect?
1. On the inside she's already perfect.
Outside, I think some kind of plastic surgery.
2. Diet. You know, her hair. I'd diet, maybe blue.

If you could change one thing about your Mom,
what would it be?

1. She has this weird thing about me keeping my room clean.
I'd get rid of that.
2. I'd make my Mom smarter. Then she would know
it was my sister who did it and not me.
3. I would like for her to get rid of those invisible eyes on her back.

Happy Birthday Honey!!

Happy Birthday to my Honey today!! You are good and wonderful and kind! You are a GREAT daddy, a wonderful husband and THE best friend a girl could ask for! You are generous and loving, thoughtful and gentle! You are manly in the best of ways and sensitive in ways that more men should be! You are a best friend and role model to our son and I am so thankful that YOU are his daddy! You are a lover of Jesus and wonderful with all children!
You are funny and smart, sweet and humble!
You are athletic and handsome!!
You are fun to play with and a joy to spend time with!Moses and I love you very much! Happy Birthday!!


Trish from Daisy's and Dot's tagged me and I needed a quickie blog post today. :)

4 Jobs I have had:

1. Marina worker-painted boat bottoms, changed oil in boats, dangled by my ankles into the guts of huge yachts to fix their engine parts. LOVED this job!!
2. Waitress at the same marina...LOVED this job too but could never do it again...easily took home $200-$300 in tips a night on the weekends...other waitresses took home $75-$ we can say I have mad waitressing skills. :)
3. Florist. to take home all of the "old" flowers. :)
4. Reference library worker. During college this was my on campus job...I had to work 9 hours a week but there was only like 45 minutes of work to do so I read A LOT of reference material.

4 Movies I have watched more than once:

1. Gone With the Wind. LOVE.
2. My Fair Lady. LOVE.
3. Little Women. LOVE.
4. Sense and Sensibility. LOVE.

4 TV Shows I cannot miss:

1. LOST- Thankful I have Doug to watch with otherwise I would be lost.
2. The Office-Would Jim just propose already!!
3. House
4. Prison Break

4 People who email me regularly:

1. April
2. Carolyn (my sister in law)
3. Courtney
4. Holly

4 Places I have been:

1. Romania-missions trip
2. Coasta Rica-Missions trip
3. Holland-LOVEd everything but Amsterdam
4. Sunset Beach-My Favorite Beach of ALL time. :)

4 Favorite foods:

1. Apple pie and vanilla ice cream
2. Cake batter ice cream with rainbow sprinkles and oreos
3. Fried Chicken and Mashed potatoes
4. Breakfast for dinner!!

4 Places I would like to visit:

1. Norway
2. The West Coast
3. Someplace tropical
4. Ireland

4 Things I am looking forward to this year:

1. Summer fun!
2. Moses turning TWO!!
3. Spending time with my two men! Always my favorite!
4. Fall!

4 People I am tagging:

1. Michelle
2. Pam
3. Courtney (now you have something to start with!)
4. Chris

Do you feel like you know me better now? :)

The next time you see me I may be bald.

Because Moses is about two minutes from making me pull my hair out! He has gone from clingy to stinker this weekend...wants nothing to do with me and will not let go of Doug. We have had plenty of time-outs this weekend...but I am the one who needs a break! See that little band-aid on his noggin? That is what we will call "icing on the cake"...mid-fit he fell and landed head first onto the corner of an open drawer. As you can see from the photo above, it wasn't long until it was back to business as usual for he is receiving calls on the DVD remote. Look how sad. :( This is the worst wound he has had so far in his short little life. Hopefully he will leave a band-aid on...we didn't feel the need to take him to the ER. I am very anti-ER. I am also a non-worrier but I do worry that I don't worry enough. Does that make sense to anyone? I think it means that there are probably things I should worry about but don't but I don't have the ability to know if I should worry or not...hmmm...I'll just stop. Today marks the beginning of Doug's birthday week! This is one of our favorite family is high on both of our love languages so...we do birthdays big. You are really king or queen for the week...including choosing when your week can be the week leading up to your birthday, the week following or you can have your birthday plop in the middle. You get to choose the menu, mostly and best of all you get a present each and every day! Some are small gifts some are big but you get to choose one every day! :) Happy birthday week honey!!! We can't wait to do this with Moses!Amy Butler has a new line out at Micheal's...I tried to restrain myself and only came home with three things...if you know me that is pretty darn good!
To make up for his ridiculous behavior I made him wash my car...don't forget the tires Moses!

Happy Friday!!

Hello friends! Happy Friday to you all!! I won't has been a rough day...Moses is clingy, my head is pounding but the shop....I mean show must go on. Still working hard to catch up to myself and I am hoping that this weekend will do it for me. Doug is off and we are planning to do some YARD-SALE-ING tomorrow morning!! I love weekends when Doug is off. :)
Like I said, Moses has been super clingy today but when I offered him my jar of buttons to play with he jumped out of my arms...and quietly spent the next 30-40 minutes taking them out of one container and putting them into another...ahhhhhhhh.....
The mailman brought me yummy things today...these sweet little dishes from my favorite Etsy potter, lgbrinkley...she is SO sweet...if you haven't gotten a treat from her yet you are seriously missing out!
And yes, my name is Crystal and I am addicted to Julie's signs!! But LOOK at this one! I cannot wait to celebrate each and every event with this CUTE sign!! The bottom part is a chalkboard so you can celebrate everything from birthdays to a lost tooth, to potty training victories to Fridays! You should go get one while you can...I would never mislead you. :)

And last but not is another of my all time favorite recipes. Oven fried chicken...this is not the recipe in its original form because I have changed it to make it a little better. The trick is to 1) spray your pan (I use a glass pan) or use that non-stick foil 2) DO NOT FLIP the chicken over during cooking 3) spray the top of the chicken, once it is in the pan, with PAM.

The BEST Oven Fried Chicken

1/3 cup flour
1 tsp. salt
Dash of pepper
Package of Chicken tenders
1 egg, lightly beaten
2 Tbsp. water
1/4 cup KRAFT 100% Grated Parmesan Cheese
1/2 cup bread crumbs (I like the Italian Flavor or you can add some Italian blend seasoning)
2 Tbsp. butter or margarine, melted

PREHEAT oven to 375°F. Mix flour and seasonings in shallow dish. Add chicken; toss to coat. Beat egg and water in separate shallow dish. Mix cheese and breadcrumbs in third shallow dish.

DIP chicken in egg mixture, then in cheese mixture, turning over to evenly coat both sides. Place in 13x9-inch baking dish; spray chicken with cooking spray.

BAKE 1 hour or until chicken is cooked through (180°F).

How to make the CUTEST Mother's day gift ever....

What mother or grandmother wouldn't love to get something this precious? A cute 3D photo of their favorite grandchild...The best part is that it is inexpensive AND easy to do! Wanna know how?
First take some photo's of your kids holding something like they would a flower-like a pencil or crayon...nothing too large. I gave Moses one of my button flowers and told him to smell it (one of the few things he will do on command---the boy will smell anything). I couldn't believe how lucky I was to get this face!! If you have an older child you can get them to show you the "flower" this makes a cute photo too...keep clicking until you get one that will work...
Then I took an exacto knife and cut slits along the top edge of his hand (where it looks like the flower going into his hand) and again at the bottom. Then you just slip an artificial flower into the slits...this photo is a 4 by 6 so I used a small flower but you can use any flower you want...especially if you do an 8 by 10. When you put the photo into the frame take the glass out and put it in behind the photo or if you are mailing it, use cardboard to provide support instead of glass. Ta da!!! Cuteness you can do!! Make sure you let me know if you do this project...I wanna see!!! :) Beautiful spring day here today...lovely as lovely can be! Have a beautiful day you lovely readers!
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