Monday, December 31, 2012


"2013 goals: love bigger, worry smaller, run headlong into the arms of Jesus every single day"
~Lisa Harper

Comfort Cake

1-18 1/4 oz box of yellow cake mix
1-3 1/2 oz pkg instant vanilla pudding mix
4 eggs
1/2 cup cold water
1/2 cup oil
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts
1/2 cup Southern Comfort

4 tbsp. butter or margarine
1/8 cup water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup Southern Comfort
To make glaze, melt butter in saucepan. Stir in water and sugar. Boil 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in Southern Comfort.

For the cake, combine all ingredients in a large bowl and beat at medium speed for 2 minutes. Pour into a greased and floured 10-inch tube or 12-cup Bundt pan. Bake at 325 degrees for 1 hour. Set on rack to cool. Invert on serving plate. Prick top immediately; drizzle and brush half of glaze evenly over top and sides. Reserve remaining glaze. After cake has cooled, reheat remaining glaze and brush it evenly over cake.

Our Resolution


Sunday, December 30, 2012

Heart of a Warrior

1. A Warrior sees through God's eyes, not his/her own
2. A Warrior is obedient even if he/she doesn't fully understand.
3. A Warrior has a good shout!
 ~ Pastor
Shawn Jensen 

*join us Sundays at 11:00 am for Kulture Church at Pontiac High School Auditorium!!!

Over and Over

"It's not what we do once that brings victory in our lives, but what we do over & over
& over & over & over....
~Joyce Meyer

Saturday, December 29, 2012


1-Sometimes I go pick up my littles after they have went to sleep....and hold them close.
Because the time is slipping by too fast. And because I get fearful that that exact moment could be our last.

2- Sometimes I yell when I'm angry... even though I know it's not the answer and it's not going to help. Because sometimes I don't take the time to think before I speak.

3- Sometimes I let dishes in the sink at night and toys on the floor next to basket because I just cant bear to do that exact chore for the 500 million bazillionth time.

4- Sometimes I have really down right down and depressing days in the winter.....and I hate the cold and non-sunshiney days....and I curse at the yucky roads and wonder why we even stay in Illinois.

5- Sometimes I cry because I don't feel there's enough of me to go around at the end of the day.
The bills, the laundry, the cleaning, the baking, the attention and love my man and kiddos need.....

6- Sometimes I forget to focus on the positives instead of the negatives in the world today.

7- Sometimes I lose my patience with 3 sweet little monkies that I wonder if anything I teach them is sinking in ....the same little monkies I tell you sweet funny stories about.

8- Sometimes I throw hissy fits in my bathroom when no one is looking or in ear shot.

9- Sometimes I question God why He allows bad things to happen to good people.

10- BUT...all the time...I'm reminded by that same God....that HOPE and MERCY are new every day. That we are forgiven for all our mistakes. That we are loved always... no matter what other people say about us or against us. That tomorrow is gonna be better than today.

That...."You and I, we all bleed red, we all taste rain, all fall down, lose our way
We all say words, we regret, we all cry tears, we all bleed red
Sometimes we’re strong, sometimes we’re weak, sometimes we’re hurt and it cuts deep
We live this life, breath to breath, we’re all the same; we all bleed red."

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Monkeystory #610


1- BabyMonkey: "Mommy! Slow down! Cops get you!!! But Baby Jesus loves you....."

5- Driving past Benchwarmers tonite and the amazing smells of steak start coming in our van. The little noses instantly alert. "Mommy!!! Mmmmm....what is that yummy smell!??!?! " "Mommy, look! That guy is grilling outside with his coat on in the cold!" Oh Mommy! It smells so good, can we get some?" "No's for the people that go eat at that resturant." Gabe:" Well, Mommy, just drive past the grill and grab a steak and then we can take it home to Daddy and eat it!!"

Oh to have a child like heart :) These littles....they really believe that anything is possible and everything is so simple. I'm just gonna keep hanging out with them :)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

8 Years!!!!

Happy 8 years to my bestest friend....partner in of my of my dreams. The journey hasn't been easy...but it's been worth every step. I'm so thankful I married a guy who loves Jesus, loves adventures, is an amazing Daddy, works hard, and puts up with every last bit of me. Because of him, I am a better person today. Love you babe!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


 1- On the way to a family gathering today, Gabe yells from the back seat that he tore a thread off his suit coat. I ask him to send it to the front so I can check out the damage. Upon inspection, I realize 2 buttons are gone and I start getting after him that he tore off a button in the process of yanking the thread. He snorts at me and says, "Mommy!!! I did not do that!!! Those... buttons have been missing for years!!!!" Uh right kid....especially since you only wear yer clothes for 6 mths or less before you outgrow them!!!
2- Was reading my friend's fb status out loud about her and her "woobie" since I had never heard the word before and was asking my family if they knew what it meant. Gabe gets big eyes and turns to me and says, "Mommy, did you say booby?!?!!?"{i now realize i was pronouncing it wrong} every time i said the word, Gabe giggled and snorted like it was the funniest thing ever. So we turned it into a game with uncle Isaac.......whoever keeps a straight face/no smiling or laughing after the word "wooobie" is said, they win.
Great memories being made at the Steidinger house tonite :) Thanks for not only the entertainment but the education amy !! :)

Monday, December 24, 2012


Family, food, fun........
gifts, giggles,grins....
Love, laughter, lights......
snow, singing, snuggles.....
But most of all:
Joy, Justice and Jesus.
Merry Christmas Eve to all!!!!! :)

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

Warrior Heart

The heart of warrior lies within us all....its our choice....and ours alone....which battles are we gonna fight every day of the journey?
Today....I choose the good fight.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012


My heart is so broken that while there were unknowing Mamas out there this morning sending their precious littles off to school for the last time they would ever see them....hug them....kiss them....cuddle them........there were others plotting at the same time, to kill and destroy. I don't understand how someone could have that much hurt and hatred in their own hearts to do such a thing... other than someone didn't love them enough. Praying so hard for the families that lost their children.....and praying that we all get a little bit more serious about really loving the people in our that "hurt people stop hurting people." And holding our monkies a little bit tighter.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Monkeystory #606

Overheard at the MonkeyHouse today....

While driving a loaner car around, Ellie exclaims from the back seat: "Gabe! You know how Uncle Josh and Uncle Jake have sweet trucks?!?!?!?!? Well now we finally have a suuuuweeeet car!!"
Obviously she has no idea how smokin' hot my van is!!!!

BabyMonkey is in the process of potty training. It's not going super good....but it's going. This morning she comes to me and informs me, " I  has Baby Poop Mommy....change me peese." I thought it was weird she called it that....was new terminology to me. This afternoon she comes to me, "Mommy, I has Mama Poop..." really?!?! If this chick is gonna be a smartypants like that then she can definatley potty train for sure!!!! no excuses :)

Monday, December 10, 2012

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Friday, December 7, 2012

I Could Not Ask For More

Drinking hot chocolate with marshmellows, folding laundry, cleaning the kitchen and bathrooms, doing addition, subtraction, spelling,reading, cuddling, BabyMonkey attempting to cut her own hair,
listening to Philip Philips, Candy Land, movies by christmas lights,
 popcorn and chocolate caramel bailey's was not on the agenda for our fun friday night.
 But i've discovered when kids get sick, laying down on the floor ..... kicking and screaming... doesn't change things...and doesn't make the kids get better quicker.
 However, I realize as I watch BabyMonkey line up the CandyLand gingerbread men ..... talk to them in her high pitched voice she uses when she talks to babies & then brings out her bossypants voice to order them "back to bed" in the cardboard box....that someday these moments will be long gone. As I listen to Gabe using big words and phrases on his computer game...I'm grateful that he's only 6 and not 16 yet...out and about on a Friday night with his friends. As I watch Ellie push her long, beautiful hair out of her face, all cuddled up with her blankets...I'm thankful she's feeling better after a rough last night....and that she's ok with her Mama being overprotective and hovering while she heals.
When they are all tucked in and the house is quiet again....I realize that it really was a good friday night....
"that these are the moments I'll thank God that I'm alive
And every prayer has been answered
Every dream I've had's come true
Yeah, right here in this moment
Is right where I'm meant to be
These are the moments I thank God that I'm alive
These are the moments I'll remember all my life
I've found all I've waited for
And I could not ask for more."

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Smile for Today...

Things that made me smile this morning:

1- Ellie girl climbing into bed with me, snuggling up, and whispering me awake with: "Mommy?
Can we play the game 'What do our pillows say'?" I can't say no to her irrestible cuteness and so we proceed with our own little invention: Wrapping our pillows around our face, pretending to "listen" to what our pillow said....taking turns, seeing who's pillow says the silliest thing. { like:"My pillow says  there are 4 little squirrels playing across the street up on Emma's roof, having a tea party!" "Well my pillow says there are 5 little butterflys washing the windows at Amy's house!"}love these moments with her. :)

2- Stopping BabyMonkey this morning to say, "Hey, you're beautiful!" She doesn't miss a beat and her smartypants voice replies, "No, Mommy! You bootiful!!" :)

3- Mustaches and Love.....

4- Gabe opening up the front door to feel the temperature outside to see what he should wear today :)He opens it just a little bit, sticks his hand out, opens it further, sticks his whole arm out, opens it all the way and does a little dance on the porch and comes back in with a big smile on his face :)

5- Stickers all over my pants from a monkey playing at my feet :)

6- Sunshine, Christmas lights, Alan Jackson Christmas music in the background, Mocha Swirl Hazelnut Coffee, and Pepperidge Farm creme filled French Vanilla pirouettes :)

7- Texts that make my heart skip a beat from the man who loves me despite all my flaws and continues to be my bestest friend after all these years....and who loves to show our kids that part of being "in love" is Daddy & Mommy having fun together :)

8- Thinking of last night....our little boy growing up too fast, making 2 shots at his basketball game and then a 3rd right as the buzzer sounded :)

9- Ellie going to refill her water cup and exclaiming "Who dumped glitter in my cup?!?!!? I can't drink glitter! That little Miss Aubrie did it I bet!!!!"

10- ....favorite song right now :)

Monday, December 3, 2012


1-Gabe thinks he's super duper smart today because he figured out how to spell BOOB. (we were making up words with the "oo" sound) He realizes what he wrote, gets big eyes, pulls his shirt down, points and says, You mean, I just wrote this? Like a real boob??!?!"  And proceeds to fall off his chair laughing uncontrollably. So call me a bad mom...I fell off my chair laughing too.
I couldn't help it.
2- Ellie yells at the top of her lungs from downstairs "MOOOOOOOOOMMMMMMMMYYYYYYYYY!" with that "urgent" voice. I go running, expecting disaster. "What???" Ellie runs up to me, flings her arms around my legs so tight, then looks up, "Nothing, I just wanted to tell you that I love you so much Mommy... Even when you don't let me make any of the rules."
3- Aubrie...AKA: BabyMonkey: caught red handed (after being tucked into bed for the 5th time) sneaking a piece of pizza off the stove.....I come up the stairs, pizza goes flying across the kitchen, she goes streaking past me with huge eyes, 100 mph back to bed yelling: "I saw-wee!!! I saw-wee!!! I saw-wee!!!"
Seriously.....we don't need TV or movies here. We have the best live entertainment ever :) for real...

Sunday, December 2, 2012

The Bridge Builder

Today I'm thankful for the Bridge Builder....
the only One who can love us enough and help us get from our messy dark seasons of life over into our more beautiful refined seasons.
The only One who has the most undescribable heart that loves us for who we are now and who we are going to be.
Not who we have been and the mistakes we have made.
The One who says we are good enough despite the bumps in the road....
we are beautiful beyond our imperfections...
and we are more valuable than all the gold in the world.