13.2POUNDS: Home-Birthing Guide

My friend, Dana, is a real woman.  Not only did she have natural child birth, but she had an unassisted home birth to a 13.2lb angel.  I know there are lots of opinions on the home birth issue.  I personally don’t know if I could do it.  I had health issues during my pregnancy that required constant monitoring and complete bed rest.  But I do support a woman choosing the home birth option if it works for her and her family.

If you are considering this option for yourself, or are just curious in her story, check out her new ebook!

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Foji’s Indian Chicken

Some of you may not know, but my ex husband is Indian, from India not American Indian.  For years I have enjoy cuisine.  I am grateful I was able to learn how to cook a little bit of Indian food from my ex’s family.  My son loves when I cook it for him at home.  He says it’s delicious but not as good as when his dad’s family cooks for him, LOL!  Anyway, this dish is LEGENDARY in my ex’s family.  It’s his uncle’s creation, hence Foji’s Chicken.  Foji is the Indian word for uncle.  I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t love this dish.


  • 8-12 skinless pieces of chicken legs, or 6 breasts
  • 3 cans fire roasted tomatoes, pureed in blender-optional*
  • 1 large chopped onion, pureed in blender-optional*
  • 5 whole cloves
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 inch of ground ginger
  • 2-3 ground garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tsp Shan chicken curry powder
  • 2 tsp cumin


Saute onions in oil on medium high heat and add cinnamon and cloves.  After onions are caramelized, add tomatoes and let simmer for five minutes.  Add Shan chicken curry powder, garlic, ginger, cumin, and garam masala then let simmer for five minutes.  Add approximately 8-12 skinless chicken pieces, whichever pieces are your favorite will work.  Foji usually uses legs.  I used breasts and it was delicious, too.  If you use breasts, I would cut them in half and only use six.  Turn burner down to low and let simmer for 45 minutes and stir every 20 minutes or so.  After simmering and chicken is cooked through, check for salt and add if needed.

This dish is not hot but it is spicy.  But don’t let that deter you from trying it.  If you are afraid it might be too spicy for you, buy or make plain yogurt when you are purchasing the ingredients.  That is what my ex’s family use to take the spiciness of a dish down a few notches.  Just put a good 2-3 tbsp dollop onto of your chicken and sauce and mix in to cool it off.

Serve this dish with basmati rice, or white rice if it’s all you have.  When you prepare the rice, add about 4 cloves to the pot while you are cooking the rice.  This is very typical to do when cooking rice.  In the picture above I used saffron rice to serve with.  Also, I added a can of chick peas to my chicken mixture.  My son and I love them.  It only made it better to us!  I also added 1 tsp of turmeric but you can leave this off if you don’t like it.

Are you brave enough to try and make Indian food?

Shared on the Hearth and Soul Blog Hop.

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Take Pictures Like a Pro

Have you been to get family portraits made lately?  Then I don’t have to tell you how ridiculously expensive they are!  And I know you have seen one of those fancy looking cameras around someone’s neck on your last vacation, right?

Well all my budget can afford is pictures I take myself with my little Kodak EasyShare C613 Digital Camera.  All of us moms are usually sentimental when it comes to our kids and memories.  Pictures are one of the best ways to capture all of them conveniently.

This is a little collection of articles, some mine and some not, that area dedicated to tips on how to take great shots of your family memories without the cost of formal training and expensive equipment.

44 Essential Digital Camera Tips and Tricks by Marcus Hawkins

Taking Pictures of Your Christmas Tree by Rachey at August Tea Photography

Do you have any resources, tips or photography experiences

you can share with the rest of us amateurs?


Homeschool Shopping Deals

I ran into Dollar General this afternoon to grab some cheap laundry detergent to wash some outdoor things and extra blankets.  When I walked in the front door I was met with a homeschooler’s clearance DREAM!  Not pictured is 13 packs of loose leaf, wide ruled paper all for .25/each.

In two weeks I will begin homeschooling one of my three nephews and my niece.  My sister and her family are moving into my same town!!  I will have almost all of my babies near me on a day to day basis now.  In the meantime, I was in need of serious curriculum supplements.  I have all the resources I need for the traditional stuff.  But these few ‘fun’ things at DG were found just in time.

Shown above are Sesame Street Colors with Elmo, 2 packs of construction paper, Advanced learning with Hannah Montana:  Reading, Writing & Math, Disney Princess Addition & Subtraction, Disney Princess Spelling, Crayola Squiggles & Doodles Workbook, Disney Camp Rock Advanced Learning:  Reading, Writing & Math, Life Animals Picture Puzzles, Amazing Puzzles Picture Perfect Puzzles, and a Dinosaur Crust or Cookie Cutter.

And two bonuses were a Disney Princess baton for .25 and 3 activity books for all three of my nephews that were only .25/each too.  I also got several other different and fun activity books just to have, too.  I spent a total of $18 on everything including the laundry detergent and 13 missing paper packs.

What was your favorite homeschool curriculum deal you scored this year?

Fifteen Years Like a Handful of Yesterdays…

And today the 14 year old becomes a 15 year old.  Where has the time gone?  He’s been studying for his driver’s permit.  But I can remember when….

I prayed and prayed I was having a boy.  I was afraid of dealing with girl drama.  When the ultra sound tech confirmed my wish, I cried.  I was in labor all night and didn’t know it.  Then in the morning when I started having contractions, I really did know it.  I thought to myself, how cool would it be if he was born on his Uncle Nick’s birthday!  By that evening, that thought was a reality.

Labor…is exactly what they call it for a reason.  But the first time I held him I thought to myself, wow!  I would do it all over again in a heartbeat!  I was scared to sleep the first week.  Then one night I sat straight up in bed so hard and fast that I woke up my ex husband, too.  I heard something in my sleep and didn’t know I had.  Then I heard something coming from the crib.  He had rolled onto his back and spit up and was choking quietly.  Thank you, Lord, for small miracles!

I always wanted to be there so he would know without a doubt he was loved.  But I thought my mother would freak out the day I purposefully poked him with a sewing pin to teach him a lesson about playing with her pin cushion.  I figured the best way to teach him the lesson of leaving it alone-after the 100th time of catching him sitting in a pile on needles-was to prick his hand and let him know why he shouldn’t play with them!  We never found him in needles again after that.

We have made it through being hit by a drunk driver, a divorce, the first day of school, the first day of middle school, homeschooling, the beginnings of adolescence, the first day of high school and now preparing for a driver’s permit.  My precious little boy who started out 23 inches long and 7 lbs 8.5 oz has grown into a 5′ 6″, 256 lb brick wall on the football field.  And heaven help me but he’s STILL GROWING!

He has been the best thing about my life.  And thank God I have had nothing to do with it for the most part.  I am just a guide.  I gave him to the Lord a long time ago because I know what a mess I am.  Even in parenting God can do mighty things with the most humble of materials.  I am amazed as I watch him grow into the man God is shaping him to be.

I am grateful for every moment I have been blessed with this precious gift from heaven.  Why God would entrust me with the charge and care of something so miraculous I will never understand.  But I will spend all my days trying to help him recognize the ways of God in his life.  And remember to thank God every moment for His smallest and greatest blessing…

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