Monday, October 18, 2010

Homeade Laundry soap recipe

Here is the recipe I was taught by a friend (thanks Lisa<3) and it works great is easy to make and save us alot of $$$!!!!!!!!!!!

Things you need to get:

•5 gallon bucket with a lid

•cheap cheese grater

•box of Borax

•package of ivory white bar soap

•box of washing soda(good luck finding it in Lebanon, had to go to brownsburg)

•small bottle of liquid detergent of your choice(this is optional, just for scent)


1 qt water

2 C borax

2C washing soda

2 C or bars of ivory bars (grated)

Boil the qt of water and dissolve the ivory soap , stir until totally dissolved.

Poor into bucket, add the borax and washing soda, stir well, add the optional bottle of detergent, stir, add 2 gallons of hot water, stir, done, easy enough! Stir each time u use it, it may gel.

Enjoy !

Friday, October 15, 2010

Fall is here and I am loving it!!

Anyone who knows me, knows that I LOVE fall! I love pumpkins, sweatshirts, great weather.....just to name a few!
We are through 9 weeks of homeschooling and its going great, I am amazed and thrilled about how Jack and I's relationship is even better than before, he is realizing that I am not such an uncool mom, and we are really enjoying each other. I am really enjoying the relaxed lifestyle that homeschooling brings to me, we are on our time and we get done what we are suppose to, and most of the time we are ahead of schedule, but it is so stress free and fun! I am learning so many things with him that I either forgot, or never learned in the first place!!
We are in a homeschooling group and have fun going to CROSS (its called) every other thursday we meet and have P.E, Math pentathlon and Art classes and Marcus does a preschool class and we have had fun field trips and many more to come. Its been nice getting to know more families with similar beliefs and a christian lifestyle that homeschool too!
 Now if we could just get our house sold and get to the country before winter sets in, I am starting to wonder if thats going to happen:(  but all things aside, life is good, and I am blessed beyond measure.
 My dad had a cancer scare, he is recovering and they think he is cancer free after surgery, praise GOD! It is funny how we go along with life and something like this happens and it rocks our world as we know it, it makes you think and pray like never before and then with Gods grace, we can look back and thank Him for answered prayers, and get back to our daily life and just go on. I pray that we do not have to visit anything like this again fora very long time if ever!
I am having fun hanging with my family and watching the leaves fall!
I am sharing a fun fall pumpkin poem that I recently came across(thanks Julie Mark), enjoy:

is for the people that Jesus came to save
U is for the unconditional love to each he gave
M is for the message that we should all be sharing
is for the priceless gift God above gave us, he is caring
K is for the King of Kings
is for the insight that He brings  
N is for the nails in His hands
S is for the Savior who gave His life so that we could stand

So when you see a pumpkin, don't think about some guy named Jack. Instead remember Jesus Christ, Lord of Lords who one day IS coming back!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

TIME FOR SCHOOL!!!!!!! Home Style:)

I cannot believe how fast the summer has flown by! But Its time for my homeschooling venture to begin! I have successfully downloaded Jacks programs and  begun preparing for our first year! I am very excited about teaching him at home and I think it will strenghten the family! But anyway, we are ready to begin starting tuesday!!
This month has been so crazy that I haven't even thought if blogging! But I know I needed to update!
My little guys have been playing outside everyday and love to ride their bikes, and being on a high traffic corner, I have to watch their every move! Since moving here in March, it has been nice being free from the financial burden, but we quickly realized that our yard was too small for 3 young boys and we need more space, so we have started looking in the country! Call me crazy but I have had a sudden urge to garden, raise chickens and live the country life! So lets hope another move is on the horizon for the fortner five!!
So many things start this week! School, preschool and awana! I am looking forward to a very inspiring fall!
I am looking for some new recipes for my meal planning and some fun recipes for saving money, I just learned how to make my own laundry soap, how fun and a great way to save money, I would like to learn to do more fun homemade things....any ideas????

Saturday, June 5, 2010


I am sooo glad summer is finally here! We have been busy the last month and I haven't been blogging! May closed out Marcus's preschool and Jack's 5th grade year, wow I cannot believe how fast the year has went by! Jacks final elementary career ended with a great 5th grade rendition of a Grease classic (so cool), Awards day where he recieved a presidential academic award for getting all A's and B's his elementary career, and student council award. The last day of school we had the 5th grade picnic at the park, it was fun but also sad to see the year come to a close, the young boy phases into pre-teen status:( .
We have been to the lake and done some fishing and putt putting, garage saling. Here at home daddy built the boys a big new playset outside, played outdoors ALOT, signed up for swim lessons for Marcus and Ben, getting ready for VBS, went to the drive-in movies for the first time with the kids and are about to build a mini barn for more storage, phew....all this in about 3 weeks time!! I told you we have been BUSY:)
I am thoroughly enjoying staying at home fulltime with the boys, it is exactly where I want to be.
I will have to admit that I am missing my old neighborhood and our big yard, but not the high house payment or taxes. It is an adjustment for all of us. And I know that it is all part of the big plan and the sacrifices we make now will all be worth it in the long run! We all have our health, happiness, financial stablility(for once, LOL) and eachother! I am BLESSED:)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Livin' the SIMPLE life and lovin' it!!

This is my 3rd week of being a stay at home domestic diva and I am loving it!! We have been in our new little abode for a month too and I also love it!! Life is so much simpler it seems. A smaller house means less to clean and organize but also means I have to stay up on it hourly, to insure that it does stay that way, LOL!! But I love it! I am even enjoying cooking more, I am trying some new and different recipes that we are enjoying, I have enjoyed cooking more the last couple of weeks than I ever have, oh the bliss!! I hope it lasts:)
I have not left myself time for my blog and I feel like it is being neglected, but now as I have cubed steak in the oven, potatoes and beans boiling on the stove and I have a few minutes to update!
It is unreal the stress level right now for me, almost at a zero, what a cool blessing!! I recommemd simplifying to anyone who is desiring the low stress life! Its amazing!
Come on,  start living the simple life,  give up those things that for years you felt you had to have but are definitely NOT necessary in life, examples(from personal experience): Large house with big mortgage and high taxes, new cars with high car payments, all the name brand clothes (esp for the kiddos), Dining out too much, buying to many unecessary toys for you and the kids,and using credit cards, and  not tracking your spending ect.... you get the just!
We did the Dave Ramsey program a couple of years ago with a small group bible study, it was life changing (in many ways) and as I started to apply his teaching for financial peace it really hit home, that we here living way above our means and would always be in financial bondage if we didn't change our ways and start a major pay down on our ever growing debt!! The stess I was having was so unecessary that we had to change something!
Well we went in head first and started by paying things off that we could- little by little using Dave's plan and the more we payed down the more it made me want to keep going!! It also meant changing the way we did things, like, using credit cards and eating out too much. Having a budget and sticking with it, is also necessary for staying on track. We now even have an emergency fund so if something happens we don't have to go into debt to fix it.  If you don't have the cash to buy it and you don't need it, pass on it. As time went on, I was amazed how we could live and be happy without buying the extra's, in fact, it was more satisfying to cut back and take charge of your spending than buying stuff ever was! Don't get me wrong, I am no expert and every once in awhile I splurge on something I don't need and should have passed on, LOL.
 I never imagined that selling our home, paying off our vehicles (and driving older ones, but hey, we OWN them:)and living with-in our means would be so attainable and so life changing!! I can't give Dave all the credit, without God's guidance and wisdom through prayer, He was the giver of Grace the I so desperately need, with HIM all things are possible!!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Mommy, honey, maid, domestic diva, taxi driver, teacher, cook, ect......

Well its officially here, I am now a proud stay at home mama! For eleven years I have waited patiently for this day in time!! It came upon me so quickly that I didn't even have the time to really think about it ot let it sink in, but its here and I am enjoying EVERY minute of it!! I will have to say that being a stay at home mom is way harder  than any job out there! Way more multi-tasking expected out of you and no room for error or failure, these are your children and hubby you are working for and you want to do your best for them! But we just don't think of it that way, we just wake up in the morning (sometimes a little too early, thanks Marcus) and get right into mommy mode and start the day, everyday brings some kind of different, you just have to ride the ride and enjoy it, there is no way to get off of this type of ride, LOL!! Starting in the fall I will have another job to add to my list, teacher, as I begin homeschooling Jack this year. Do you think I will get a raise then? Kidding;)

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

No time, No time!!

Well, we moved, and wow what a job!! We are all settled in to the new pad, its alot smaller but its very comfortable and very affordable!! And it was worth it, the debts are getting smaller and smaller, and tomorrow is my last day at work, I was going to work longer to get more stable in the new house, but circumstances are making it sooner than later, but I am glad to be able to be home with the boys for spring break and this summer for sure! Things work out for a reason and I am thankful for that and the support of my family!!
Well gotta go, things to do and people to see! God Bless:)

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

WE ARE MOVING!!!!!!!!!!

We are sooo busy packing up and moving this family of 5 that I will get behind in my blogging!! As soon as I am settled and have a free moment(if ever, LOL) I will update!! Wish us luck....and many prayers!!!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Remembering Grandma

The last couple of days I have really been thinking about my grandma, I miss her. On sundays I remember as a kid that after church I would go with her and her friends to lunch, they called themselves "the widowers" club, they would get together for lunch after church on sunday afternoons and go to different little towns to their resturants and diners, we went to so many over the years , I cannot even begin to remember them all! A couple of her lady friends that I distinctly remember was a little lady named Vivian, she had cool watches that she would let me play with and usually sat in the back with me, she reminded me of a sweet Betty White, then there was Jean, a tall gray haired lady that was the "Bea Authur, type "Maude" of the group, they seem to stand out in my mind the most , the others came and went and they are all dead now. I think grandma lived the longest of them all! It must have been hard outliving all your friends and sisiters and brothers and 2 husbands, I know she was very homesick for them, she told me that the last year of her life, for she was ready to be reunited. Even though I miss her, I remember the good times for there was soooo many of them, that I will be comforted by them forever, whenever I think of her, I have good memories and love. Thanks Grandma for sharing the last 35 years of your life with me!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Preparing for the big move. I think!

Well March is here, and hopefully spring is right behind it! We are preparing for a move if all goes as planned. I am trying to get myself ready for it, downsizing with 3 kids is no easy task! But I feel it is necessary at this time in our lives and I believe that it will make a significant change within our family life as we venture into new territory of homeschooling and being able to stay at home with my boys ( as I have always dreamed of being a stay at home mom)! So with that said we had to make considerable changes like moving out of our comfy home to a less expensive smaller one, which hopefully is a freeing experience and transition. I pray for strength as I begin this journey of packing up the last 8 years in this house and learning how to let go of items I no longer use or need. Letting go of material things can be very hard to do, but remembering that they are just "things" is what I am gonna have to remind myself of throughout this move and getting rid of stuff will make my life easier and more organized, as I wish it to be!!

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Things are about to get crazy around here!!

Well, change is on the horizon for the Fortner five!! I think we have sold our home and are ready to embark on a new and different journey, I must add that it was lead by God, He definitely listens when we call! For awhile now we have dreamed of downsizing the budget and making our financial load a little easier and less stressful, and since we have dedided to homeschool next year, we know we had to make some sacrifices and change things around here to make that happen. So, as things fall into place, we will just go where the good Lord leads us! Even though we have about 2 weeks to find a house and get moved with 3 boys, 1 dog and a cat!! Tomorrow we are going on a househunting marathon and hoping we find just the right fit for our family!! Then I can discuss the other changes that will occur after the move, woohoo, I am excited and ready for the change. Albeit sad a little, because I have always loved my home and this neighborhood, I have been raising my children here for the past 8 years, It is necessary to let it go to reach some goals as a mom that I have wanted for a long time!!!
This weekend I attended my first homeschool convention, very cool! I think I have got Jacks cirriculum all lined up for 6th grade!! I am going with Sonlight for history, reading and bible, SOS for language arts and science and Teaching Textbooks for math/algebra. I am excited and ready for this new venture and season of my life and motherhood!! Wish me luck!!

Monday, February 22, 2010

Come and get it, this weeks menu!

After time and time again, while following my friend Laine's blog and envious of her organization and meal planning, I am compelled to try to start weekly meal planning for my family, unlike hers (8 children to plan for) I have a family of 5, so it should be rather simple right?? Well we will see if I can keep up:)

Monday: Homeade Goulash (one of Jacks favorites)
cottage cheese and applesauce
Tuesday: (workday) leftovers :) no fuss and easy for mom!
Wednesday: (Awana) Pork burgers, cheese potatoes and baked beans
Thursday: (workday) pizza night or carryout
Friday : (soccer game and homeschool convention) Breakfast for dinner (easy for daddy, since I will be at the convention)
Saturday: unknown at this time, maybe date night for mom and dad:)
Sunday:pasta bake and salad

Now**Lets see if I can get organized enough in this department to plan a month of meals! Lets not get ahead of ourselves, LOL!!

Friday, February 19, 2010

A time for Change............

I needed to update my blog and post but I am having a hard time trying to find a topic today!! I guess you could say writers block?? These last couple few weeks have gone fast and have had many changes: moms marriage, her moving and selling her house, Jeffry coming home from Haiti, my grandma's passing and Steve's new job. Other than that it has been fairly typical in the day in the life here! I am ready for winter to be over and spring to, its time for the seasons change too.
I can tell a change in my littlest Ben, he seems to be going through the terrible two's and he can be a real stinker at times, Marcus is still in that defiant mode right now, so they just feed off eachother and can really get themselves into a mess with mom!! Unfortunately that is something most kids go through to get to the next phase of childhood! But it seems more trying right now becase I have 2 going testing me at the same time!!
Steve has started a new job that works for his school schedule, so he works during the day and goes to school 3 nights a week. He really is enjoying this new venture, lets hope its a long term thing!
Well as a momma of 3 boys, 2 of which have worn me out already today, I am going to take a nap while they do!!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Goodbye my sweet Grandma...till we meet again, I love you!

This week I lost my beloved grandma Daphne,she was 90 1/2yrs old. In the last 9 months I have lost both of my grandmothers.  My grandma Daphne was the best grandma anyone could have, I will miss her so much, I cannot even imagine my life without her here, my boys will  miss having their "meemaw" around. Jack is having a hard time and poor little Marcus wants to go up to heaven and "knock Jesus down" to get his meemaw back! Ben doesn't quite get it yet, I am sad he will prob not remember her. She left such a legacy, her dedication to God and her faith, family and community will live on through those who loved her and her memory will last forever in our hearts as we adjust to life with her gone, I guess I never really thought the day would come when I would have to say goodbye to her, and today was the day we buried her, I can honestly say that it has not sunk in yet. Even though I know she is in heaven tonight, dancing and praising with Jesus and her loved ones (that she truly missed) I am happy and rejoicing for her, she is no longer homesick, but home, where she is young and strong forever, where I will see her again and we will rejoice together for eternity.....I love you grandma, till we meet again!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Welcome Home Jeffry Jones!!!!!!!!!!!!

The blessed event of Jeffry finally coming home from Haiti to his mommy and family was Wednesday January 27th, we all came to the airport to welcome them home from Miami, it was so exciting and tears of joy flowed from everyone I think!! My kids were so anxious to meet Jeffry and see Deanna (Neena) The channel 13 news and the Lebanon Reporter was there for coverage on the homecoming, it was awesome, I am so glad we were there to share it with out friends! Lydia is still in Haiti and is not getting her visa yet, she turns one on sunday, we were hoping she would be home for her first birthday:(. Hopefully soon she will be able to come home to her momma and big brother!
Marcus thought meeting Jeffry was so exciting, he has been told about him forever and now he really got to see him face to face, oh what great buddies they will be!
God is Good and this was front row , first hand experience of that!! I cannot wait to watch this little boy grow up and watch him and my boys play and share their childhood together!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Haiti kids are coming home!!!

Finally after 3 long years my friend Deanna is getting her sweet boy home! She is adopting from Haiti and is actually adopting a baby girl named Lydia too, because of the devastating earthquake and the condition of Haiti now, the governent has granted a Humaritanian Parole for these adoptees to come home to their awaiting families. There are so many in Indiana, I cannot believe how many Haitian children are coming here, what an amazing and wonderful thing!! We are so thrilled for all of our friends getting their children this week!! I wish Steve was out of school and we could afford to adopt one ourselves, but timing is not on our side right now:( Luckily for these orphaned children there are plenty of good christian families who would love to take them! Hopefully next time I update, Jeffry and Lydia will be here!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, January 17, 2010

The wedding was last night and was just perfect (other than Marcus and Ben being sick and Steve had to stay home with them and miss the wedding:(. ), Mom is now a married "Bond Girl" , LOL!! It will be different going to their house instead of moms, but we will all get used to it! They leave for Florida tomorrow for their 2 wk honeymoon.
Dad and Betty also leave for a 2 wk cruise to the panama canal on wed. I sure hope both couples have good weather!
The earthquake in Haiti has really gotten me to the realization of how lucky we are to be here in America! Haiti was such a devastating area anyway, now this. I pray  for the people there and hopes for their safety and provisions as they try to get some sense of direction and start re-building their lives. Our friends the Pierres and the NVM school in Chambrun were unharmed and they are all able to go out and help with the rescue efforts. God was def. watching over them and kept them from harm. The orphanage where Deanna's Jeffry and Lydia are was damaged in the aftershocks and all the children are unable to stay there, the US govt is trying to get a humanitarian parole passed so that the us families that are adopting in Haiti can bring their children home here, that would be a wonderful blessing for soooo many!
Now I have 3 sick boys here in the house, YUK:(  Atleast there is no school tomorrow for MLK day so Jack can rest!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

New Year, New Kitty!!

Welcome little Miss Mea Sophia to our home!
After a while without a kitty,we were all missing having one around the house. Noonie the boss dog had other thoughts, but we were hoping she would learn to adjust and tolerate a feline friend. We decided on a rescue shelter cat, so on we went a couple of days before Christmas to find our newest family member to be adopted into our clan. (as I write this she is laying on my desk next to me as I type)Jack spotted her right away and starting begging for this little gray and white girl, Steve and I had our eyes on this little white and brown tabby male (although he was a kitten), the boy seems to always get his way, well we ended up with Jacks pick. She was named Mea, and we call her Mea Sophia or Pizza Mea, whichever I am in the mood to say, LOL! It has taken her a couple weeks to get used to us but she is coming around more and getting more loving towards us, the boys all just love her and she tolerates even the little ones carrying her around! Noonie on the other hand took about a day wearing a muzzle to ensure no injured kitty right away! But the muzzle worked and in 24 hrs she was tolerating her being around, Mea has her claws so when noonie gets a little froggy, Mea just smacks her a couple of times!!I think in no time they will become the best of buddies!All in all I forgot how much of a pain it was having a litter box, but she is worth it!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Starting the new year out with a "Bang", oh I mean "flat"!!

Well this year has started out pretty mild except for a few bumps in the road, or flat tires I should say.....yesterday while taking Jack to school a friend flagged me down and told me I had a flat tire, great its 13 degrees out and I am on my way to work, well I had to proceed and then call the tire place to fix it while I was at work, thankfully dad handled the whole situation (aren't dads great!!) . Today was an exciting day, Jack was in the final spelling be at school, he did great, out of 30 contestants he was in the final 7 when he went out, I was sooo proud!! He gets that from me:) . Ben graduated to a big boy bed today too, wow what a baby in a real more crib, crib sheets, ect....but amazingly it makes me happy, not sad!
Steve's cousin Philip, from Florida is here staying with us this week while his mom is very ill in the hospital in Carmel, she is hanging in there, but very very sick!! I pray she makes a full recovery for her family!
The week before Christmas we got a shelter cat, Jack picked her out, she is sweet, gray and white little cat, very shy but she is starting to warm up to us. Noonie surprisingly is used to her now and actually tolerates her (thats a big deal!). So now I have 2 other females in this house with me:), dog, cat, mom:).
We are gearing up for moms wedding next week, and her big move. She is getting a little stressed but it will all work out just fine! Steve starts back at school monday the 11th, then I will miss him being home at night with me and the boys:(. Well so far so good, carry on 2010!!

It is is fall, the leaves are falling everywhere!!

It is is fall, the leaves are falling everywhere!!
Playing in the leaves a few years back

Fall FUn 09

Fall FUn 09
Brotherley Love!

Books I have recently read or reading

  • When You Come Home, by Nancy Cavin Pitts
  • Terri Blackstock's christian fiction
  • Any of the "Patchwork Mystery" series
  • Island of the Blue Dolphin
  • The Ultimate Guide to Homeschooling
  • Lisa Whelchel's "So You're Thinking about Homeschooling"
  • The Homeschooling Handbook


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