Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Mother's Day Gift Idea!

Does your Mama love to play bridge like my mama does? Is her schedule so full of bridge games she can't babysit or fit you in elsewhere? Then, honey dahlin', have I got the Mother's Day gift for you!!! Run out to your closest Lilly store and buy your mama these precious playing cards. Mama's friends will all be jealous, and Mama will be sure to thank you!! I believe they are the big print cards as well, which helps all of the ladies see the numbers without wrinkling their foreheads. If you want to make a whole theme out of this gift, why don't you include a new bridge table cover, some tally cards, and some fun nut mixes from the Fresh Market? Those ladies will go WILD!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Noah's Ark

A group of Chinese and Turkish explorers have discovered what they believe is Noah's Ark 13,000 feet up a Turkish mountain! They are 99.9% sure it is Noah's Ark! No matter what your personal beliefs may be, this is pretty amazing!! Their carbon dating shows the relics are 4,800 years old. Click here to read the whole story! What do you think?

Tuesday's Tip... Uses for cloth diapers

All mothers have used cloth diapers or burp cloths. When our triplets were born, we used so many burp cloths each day it wasn't even funny. I mean, just maybe I can laugh about it now, but the spitting and spurting was relentless. Gerber and Carters owned me. I couldn't buy enough of their soft cotton burp cloths. These cloths were what some of our mothers used for cloth diapers with the little diaper pens. Interestingly enough, they do not create a lot of lint and are a fabulous way to go green.
You can use old burp cloths as cleaning rags. I love using them to wash and dry windows or glass top tables. My favorite idea is to throw one in your beach bag. How many times have you been to the beach and found someone crying because they have sand in their eyes? For us, it's every single time we go! Sand seems especially attracted to little eyes. If you have a cloth diaper/burp cloth in your beach bag, you can wipe those little eyes and faces without wetting an entire big towel. They are soft and easy to use! You have helped save the earth by re-purposing something you may already have in your home! So don't throw those babies away, keep them for your beach bag or for cleaning cloths!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Sometimes it's hard to be a parent...

I have many friends who are wonderful mothers. One friend is especially good at teaching her children hard lessons. She has 3 wonderful children. However, like you and me, they sin too. Her two youngest children had begged her to sign them up for swim lessons to perfect their strokes before the swim team season commences. She did not want to do it because of the fact that it was a twice a week commitment in a somewhat obscure place to drive. They begged and she relented.
Once the lessons began, the children were not as thrilled with their new instructor. They said they wanted to quit, and she told them they could not quit because she had already paid for the lessons. In subsequent lessons, they would complain again about not wanting to go. Today the complaining came to an end.
The children were picked up from school and brought home to change into their bathing suits. The complaining began again. When the children came back downstairs, my friend asked them to go back upstairs, take off their bathing suits, and to bring her $25. Suddenly they began to tell her that the teacher is not that bad and that they want to stay in swimming lessons. When the came back downstairs with the $25, the Mama calmly told her children that they were paying her back for the swimming lessons that they were no longer going to take. She further explained that this is what it feels like to waste money. They begged to stay in the lessons, but she stayed firm as she had shown them grace all of the other times they complained. She loaded her children in the car, drove them to the swim lessons, and had them go in and explain to their teacher why they were not going to come back. It was a hard lesson learned for all involved. Sometimes our best lessons are learned the hardest way. What do you think?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Tuesday's Tip on Sunday

A few years ago I created an idea that I now use at many birthday parties or lunches and dinners with families. I went to The Dollar Tree and bought little plastic baskets that are meant to hold school supplies. I wash them and put a napkin in them and then use them instead of plates at parties. They are great because you can pack them in advance as needed and they hold a sandwich or hot dog, fruit, and chips or goldfish.

The first time I used them I served pb&js, goldfish, and raisins. Yesterday I served hot dogs and chips for simplicity. We had over 50 guests, so it was easy to serve those things quickly. Try it... you'll like it!

Saturday, April 24, 2010

A little something funny!

I am sorry I have been so absent the past few days. We are gearing up for the triplets' triple fun swimming birthday party today. They are so excited they can't stand it! We've also had visitors here and so I have hardly had a moment to sit down! I did read something hilarious on Facebook that is sure to incite a giggle from all of you too....

A friend said that she hated going to weddings where the older women would nudge her in the ribs and say, "You're next!" She said she put an end to it by saying the same thing to THEM... at funerals! I love it!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

The BEST Coffee

My husband and father have discerning coffee palates. They LOVE the stuff! For Christmas, hubby received a combo coffee maker and grinder. He LOVES it. With a great machine, he uses only the best beans. He enjoys Starbucks, but has also discovered Little River Roasting Company out of Spartanburg, South Carolina. The owner carefully selects his coffee beans. On the website it states that you will receive coffee that is not more than 3 days old!

French Roast is a family favorite, but they are all delicious! I hope you'll try it too. It's easy; just click HERE

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tuesday's Tip...Decorating

We all love to decorate our homes and make them lovely and welcoming. One of my creative friends found something fabulous at our Ballard's Designs store. Magnetic chandelier drops or pendalogues can be used on chandeliers or lamps in your home. In fact, you may find all kinds of creative uses for them! They have a magnet so that they can hang anywhere that is metal! Have fun putting them in pretty places all over your home!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Mama Henley Mishap!

I am so behind in creating invitations for the triplets' 9th birthday party. Our sweet darlin's haven't seemed to mind. As I typed tonight, I made a funny typo. I laughed out loud wondering what parents would have said if I had not caught my mistake!

I typed:
Siblings welcome if a parent stays and wears their shit

I meant to type SUIT.... look at what one letter can do to a sentence!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

The Dumbing Down of Society

When I was a child, my parents taught me many things. One of the things I remember most, is that we were taught to always look nice in public. It did not matter where you bought your clothes, as long as you looked clean, put together, and respectable. We didn't eat out often, but when we did, we looked our best. I especially remember dressing up for air travel or to ride the train to Richmond. In high school, I rode the train to visit a friend who was in Boarding School in Richmond. My friend, Laura, and I wore our best dresses and long wool winter coats. In fact, we have pictures of us all dressed up in front of the train.

Since the early 1990's, the demise of society has continued. Today if you ride an airplane, you are more likely to sit by someone wearing baggy sweatpants who forgot to bathe than someone who is dressed in a nice pair of khakis and a cashmere sweater. Men no longer wear smart-looking hats like those worn up until about the 1950's. Today's men might wear a backwards baseball camp instead with their pants pulled too far down their backside. What has happened to our society? Why don't we respect ourselves enough to look our best in public?

I remember well the first time I saw a man in his FLIP FLOPS at church. I am sorry, I just don't think it's that difficult to wear a closed-toe shoe for a few hours for church. I know you are not at church to impress others, but for me, church is a place where I can worship the Lord. I feel like looking my best honors Him.

There are certainly days where I run to the store in my running pants and tennis shoes in between a walk with a friend and pick up time at preschool. I don't think it's wrong to not be perfect all of the time. In fact, I never look perfect. However, if I am joining a friend for dinner, going on a date with my husband, or flying to see friends in Dallas, then I am going to look my best. How do you feel about the way people dress today?

(This photo courtesy of

A Typical Saturday

What is a typical Saturday like in your house? Is it a day for home projects, a day to watch your children play sports, or a day for you to vacate the premises? Do you enjoy time together as a family or do you escape?
I love Saturdays!!! Since we started off with a bang called triplets, it has never been easy for DH to take the children to breakfast. In reality, that's not as easy and fun as it sounds. Instead, we sleep as long as we can, which can mean anywhere from 6am to 8am, and then we wake up for a family breakfast. DH loves to buy the children their favorite bagels or chicken minis and to give me a day off from cooking breakfast. We eat together as a family, and DH & I often read the paper.
Most Saturdays we spend our time together as a family. If I need to run an errand or DH needs a haircut, one of us will leave, usually with a child in tow for "special time". Here in Florida, we spend a lot of time by the pool. The children swim and we grill our lunch or dinner and enjoy their squeals of delight.
Since Florida has so many fun things to see, sometimes we will go on a great adventure. One Saturday shortly after we moved here, we drove to Indian Rocks Beach just to eat Lighthouse Donuts for the first time! We have been to Disney quite a few times, and we've toured the beaches as well. It is so nice to have a relaxed day together as a family.
We've never had a Wii family night, so I think we may try that tonight after dinner. We grilled chicken for lunch, but I'm hoping for a little Pane' Rustica takeout tonight. What do you do on Saturday?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Miss Trish of Capri

Run, don't walk to your nearest Target. Okay, okay I know I say that every week. Just trust Mama Henley. It may be too late, but the Miss Trish of Capri shoes are IN stores for little girls and mamas. The shoes for girls are especially adorable. We flipped over them!! I think you will too! Leave it to Tar-jay to out do itself. I'll post a little later on the other "must have" shoes for your little diva!

These starfish are precious, though I am not sure if the shoes are comfortable or not.

I thought the seahorse sandals are the most versatile!

ook at the bee on this flower!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Tuesday's Tip...Gardening

If you live in Florida, you may be blessed to have a staghorn fern or two in your yard. These ferns are very beautiful and can be found attached to trees or hanging from a chain or in a hanging basket. They can grow to be enormous! The cold weather was hard on our tropical plants this year. A great way to nourish your staghorn fern is to place a banana peel in the brown parts of the plant. As the banana peel decays, it will feed your fern! What a way to help your garden grow!

Monday, April 12, 2010

The March of Dimes

Our triplets were born 10 weeks early. They are TRUE miracles!! The March of Dimes supports babies by providing support, funding, and educating others about birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality. As a mother of three tiny babies, we are THANKFUL for the March of Dimes. Won't you join me in supporting this lovely cause? I will be donating today in honor of the triplets' NINTH birthday. You can also donate at your local Publix. If you don't want to support the March of Dimes, I do understand. Just find something you believe in and support these worthy causes! They are feeling the pinch with the bad economy and we can all help! Click here to help the March of Dimes!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

The last day of being EIGHT

We spent the evening swimming with friends who are also multiples!
One of our triplets woke up this morning and said, "I had almost forgotten this is the last day of being eight." Of course I know their birthday is tomorrow, but hearing those words from her sweet little mouth made me so sad. Of course I am happy they are being blessed with another birthday. We have all come so far! But I also find that as happy as it is to see them grow and change, it's also hard. It's hard to see them have their last bottle, their last night in a crib, their last time with training wheels, and their last time with all baby teeth. Our sweet ones are growing up. We love who they have become.

A is all boy and just the other night, his true love for reading was ignited. He stayed up 2 hours past bedtime to finish reading a book. I was thrilled to see him love to read like that! He is an avid golfer and a good friend. He swims well and is a great big brother to four sisters. There is nothing more tender than to see him guiding his youngest sister or helping her swim. Our boy loves to learn and is especially proficient in Math. He loves the outdoors and has a mind that is so inquisitive. Sometimes he fires off questions faster than you can answer them, but he always retains whatever you tell him. He killed his first deer at Christmas with his uncles and could hardly wait to come home and tell us all about it! He loves riding his bike throughout the neighborhood and playing basketball or football at home with his Daddy. The 2 pound 5 ounce baby boy who struggled to learn to breathe on his own is a bright big boy now. Despite 7 weeks in the NICU and 3 blood transfusions, he is full of vigor and life! He is a delight!

Our D had to be resuscitated at birth. She had quit breathing. By the end of her first 24 hours, that 3 pound 2 ounce bundle of joy had removed her CPAP and decided to breathe on her own. She was the first of the three to learn to suck, swallow, breathe on her own ( a big deal for preemies born at 30 weeks). However, whenever it was time for her to go home, she would have a bradycardia or forget to breathe, forcing her to start the 8-day countdown all over again. Babies had to be free of all of those things for 8 days in order to go home from the hospital. We believe our D couldn't bear to leave brother A in the hospital, as she stayed with him for 5 of the 7 weeks and was really ready to go home at about 2 weeks old. She has always been our quiet caregiver. D loves school and excels in her classes. Unfortunately, she rushes through her work just like I used to do! Despite her quiet nature, she loves drama and makes everyone laugh with her different personas (like grandmother like mother like daughter). She writes well and enjoys riding horses. She is frugal with her money but generous to those in need. Our D has a big heart.

Our CP, or Tiny, is the baby of the bunch. While she is child number 3 of 5, she still loves to be held and hugged and cherished like the baby. Her eyes still have that sparkle she's had since birth. She may be Tiny, but she is strong! She came out of the womb with her little arm raised and she is still a mighty little thing. CP has a wonderful motherly instinct and is so helpful and sweet to her little sisters. She loves school and has the most beautiful handwriting. Her teacher says she couldn't run the classroom without our CP's help. A natural swimmer, Tiny is enjoying her time on the swim team. She was the first to leave the hospital because she wanted to be with her Mama and Daddy. We are thankful!!! CP, you can always come home to us!

I tucked in our triplet treasures and will share parts of their NINTH birthday tomorrow!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Why didn't I think of this?

For the 2009-2010 school year, our children and their friends have been crazy about Silly Bandz. Why didn't I create these things? A simple rubber band in a fun color and shape is a concept that is sweeping the nation! Children everywhere beg for more Silly Bandz. They are now being sold at places like Walgreens and shops at the beach. Stores advertise that they are have them in stock. I so wish I had created these things! Our sweet friend, W, bought each of our children a new pack yesterday. She is so generous!!! Every child was thrilled and went to bed talking about their Silly Bandz. One daughter even gave her bands a delicate bath. Do your children love Silly Bandz?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

It's a DEAL!

Mama Henley loves a deal!!! Run, don't walk, to your nearest Publix! Goldfish are 10 for $10!!! With 5 young children, we can eat some goldfish! If your children love them too, now is the time to stock up the pantry!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A sign?

Enough said. My favorite part is, "It's the way to go". Hilarious!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Tuesday's Tip...Cleaning

I love to clean. I grew up with a father who is very clean. When we had to wash the kitchen floor, we used a cloth and ammonia water and washed it on our knees... a mop would not make it clean enough. While I often hated my chores, I am thankful for them now. I love to have clean bathrooms more than anything. If we have had an influx of guests, then I clean the guest bathroom. I clean all of our bathrooms at least twice a week. If I walk in a bathroom that needs cleaning, I stop what I am doing and clean it.
Your Tuesday's tip is this: keep cleaning supplies in each bathroom. If you have to go to a central location to grab your supplies, then you are not going to stop what you are doing and clean. I stock each bathroom with a pink sponge (pink to clean the SINK) and a second sponge of any color for the toilet and tub/shower. Softscrub, Lysol Cleaner, and toilet cleaner are also in each bathroom, along with a toilet brush. You can buy toilet brushes at the $1 store and it is a good idea to replace them at least once a year. In our guest bath, we do not have a sink with a cabinet, so our supplies are stored in the bottom of the coat closet which happens to be in the guest bath! I also put several rolls of toilet paper in each bathroom and a book of matches on a shelf in the guest bath. Our guest bath also has a nice candle and some fragrant room spray. Clean those potties, girls!

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

Our day was filled with lots of joy. It began with 5 precious ones ready to see what their gifts were to celebrate Jesus' resurrection. I love the anticipation of running down the stairs! Our Bug could barely sleep:).

I then attempted to make bunny pancakes. This is easier said than done, so each child had one bunny pancake and as many regular pancakes as they needed.

Our church service was particularly moving. We had a great lunch at Miss R's house. She opens up her home to our entire congregation. What a gift!

After lunch, our friends joined us for a swim and hot dog supper. The children had a BALL! Sweet K made the most precious lamb cake and it was sacrificed for all of our enjoyment. It was a perfect day!

Saturday, April 3, 2010


Easter is such a happy time of year with the beginning of spring, flowers blooming, the births of new babies, and reminders of what Christ did for us on the cross. For our family, it's an especially happy and meaningful time of year. Yes, our family grew by 3 during Resurrection Week 9 years ago, but we rejoice far more at what happened on that cross. Jesus paid the price for all of our sins by dying on the cross. He did not have to die. He is all powerful. He could have walked away and said, "Forget it. They don't deserve it." He would have been right. We are all totally and completely undeserving of the price He paid on the cross. Not one of us is "good enough". In fact, we are all steeped in sin. We have committed murder by dragging our friend's good name through the mud when we didn't like something they did. We are all thieves too. How many times have each of us stolen someone's time by cutting out of work early or not completely fulfilling a time commitment by shaving off a few minutes here or there? I know I am so guilty of all of the above. When I taught school, there were days I couldn't wait to leave. I would pack up early or work on personal things rather than school work in those 45 minutes after the students leave. Yet Christ died for me. He died for you and me even though we have lied, stolen, hurt, cussed, and grieved others. He died on the cross for our sins. But His death was not in vain. Three days later He rose from the dead and then He went to Heaven. The Bible tells us He will come again. We can join Him in Heaven if we simply believe in Him and know that He is our Savior.

May God bless each of you this special Easter weekend. May you feel His presence in your life in a new way each day. Even if you do not believe, know that He loves you.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

The Love Language of Serving

Years ago I was in a Titus 2:4 Small Group with a wonderful woman named Laura who was almost 40 at the time. I was in my early 20s, and there were 4 other girls around my age in the group. As a newlywed, I learned so much from Laura, Lucy, Margaret, Debbie, and Catherine. One of the many things Laura did well was serve her family. Each evening she would set the table for the next morning. When her three boys arrived home from school, a special snack usually awaited them. Laura believed in serving something hot and delicious that would entice her boys and their friends to play at her house. I always admired her ability to make everything beautiful. I am guilty of letting the children come in and serve themselves. So yesterday I decided to try to be like Laura and to serve my sweet children a pretty snack. I set the table with fun bowls of pretzels and grapes. I filled glasses with crushed ice and waited to pour the pink ginger ale when they walked in the door. It was easy to make it look fun with all of our Easter decorations.

Our sweet ones did seem to love it, so I am going to try to do this more often!