Family Fun Day!!

Our church hostest a Family fun day & we had LOTS of fun!! We ate tons of yummy food & we all played in bounch houses… even mom & dad! ūüôā¬† I made this yummy Banana Split “Cake” and it was a hit!! When I got home I had to make another one so we could try it ūüôā

Coupon Savings!!

Whew! I went couponing today!¬† I can’t wait until school starts then I can go without the kids!! My bill was $325.47 and with a 57% saving I only had to pay $139.53!! In the pic below I got KC Masterpiece, Weber BBQ sauce, Carefree liner, Stayfree Pads, Colgate Toothpaste, Ivory Soap, Glade Plugins Scented Oil Warmer, ZonePerfect, Speed Stick Antiperspirant/deodorant, Honey Bunches of Oats Cereal¬†& Bayer Aspirin¬† ALL FREE!!¬† The Yoplait yogurt I got for $.50, Gummi Bears for $.40, Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream for $.50, and the Heinz White Vinegar for $.19! I did very well!! ūüôā

Wild Wednesday…

Photo from

Whew!¬† This day has already gotten wild!!¬† It’s 4 PM and it seems like NOTHING is getting done!¬† I have my daily stuff done,¬†but not my weekly chore or my goals and I might not have time.¬†¬†I wish I could go out to this swing with a good book & some ice-cold tea (with lemon!) and relax!¬† I’m in tremendous pain today!¬† I have been diagnosed with Sj√∂gren’s syndrome, it is very similar to Fibro & Lupus.¬† It’s basically like my body is allergic to itself. ūüė¶¬†Some days are worse than others, but there are days that I just want to lay in bed & cry… today is one of those days!¬† Kids aren’t making it easy at all, they keep bickering with each other & finding things to fight about.¬† Yep that swing is looking mighty wonderful at the moment!!¬†But I am a mommy… I have to be strong, I have to make dinner, I have to be the ref to the many fights that happen during the day, I have to get the house cleaned and I have to do it with a good attitude!!¬† Attitude is very important!¬† My attitude sets the tone for the whole house & for the whole day!¬† Lord help me with my attitude!!

Cleaning Calendar Challenge

Hello all! I wanted to share how I was doing on my Cleaning Calendar.¬† It’s been a week since I started doing the cleaning calendar (Organization) & I’m doing pretty good!! I still have areas I need to work on, but I’m doing better!!¬† I feel good about how my house looks, and I wouldn’t be completely freaked out if someone popped over for a visit.


After¬†a week¬†my kitchen, my living room, hallway¬†& bathroom are all still cleaned.¬† We don’t have the cash to re-do our kitchen countertops, so we went & purchased some contact paper and covered the old, and it looks amazing!!¬† I told you I am not a good house keeper!!¬† Never really have been, but with this calendar I feel like a good house keeper!¬† I modified the calendar to fit my family’s needs & what I think is important.¬†¬†I do¬†DAILY eight chores.¬† In the morning I make beds, wipe bathroom counters/sinks (this means clearing the clutter from them also), empty dishwasher,¬†do one load of ¬†Laundry, & the chore of the day.¬† Since I have back pain, this has been good for me, because I can do them all at once or I can space them out with breaks in between.¬† At night I¬†load dishwasher (& run it), clean the¬†kitchen counters/sink (clearing clutter that has piled up during the day), & sweep the kitchen floor.¬† Just doing this alone has helped keep my house clean, but I’ve also been making daily & weekly goals for myself, little projects that I want done; like today I’m going to clean all the ceiling fans in the house & de-clutter my computer desk.¬† I’ve found that if I’m doing my “chores” my children don’t complain about their chores.¬† If I have a good attitude about my chores, my children have a good attitude about their chores!!

Here’s what my chore of the day –

Monday   Catch-up day/Coupons (cut coupons & organize them)
Tuesday   Clean oven, microwave & fridge
Wednesday   Dust & Vacuum
Thursday   Mop Floors
Friday   Swing Day (see list below)
Saturday   Family Time


  • 1st week –¬†Wipe down furniture & cabinets
  • 2nd week – Clean Mirrors & windows
  • 3rd¬†week¬†–¬†Wipe down walls & doors
  • 4th¬†week –¬†Change Sheets/Project

I found a book at a yard sale that is helping me organize bigger “projects” it’s called The One-Minute Organizer by Donna Smallin.¬† She has loads of ideas & tips to help you get organized!¬† She says to “start with today’s mess. Do whatever it takes to keep up with daily mail, dishes, and laundry. Then set aside time to catch up.”¬† That goes right along with my calendar so I added a project day to my swing day just to work on bigger projects.¬† She also says to “Be realistic about you can and can’t do.”¬† Your house isn’t going to get clean & organized in one day! Just tackle one thing at a time, eventually your whole house will be cleaned.¬† I’ve heard this saying before at church or somewhere, “If you do what you’ve always done, then don’t expect different results.¬† If you want different results, do something different.”¬† That’s what I’m doing… doing something different!¬† I’ve tried to be the housekeeper my grandmother was, it doen’t work for me!¬† I’m not her!¬† But what does work for me is the cleaning calendar.

So here’s my challenge to you, try the cleaning calendar for one month.¬† See if it works for you, if it doesn’t find something different – just DON’T QUIT!¬† Keep trying until you find something that works!

Neff/Garner Brick Wall

Oh boy does genealogy have anything to do with LUCK? I think so. I was just playing around and trying to get my sources all in line, so I went to It said James G. Neff born in Michigan married Hattie Gainer on 03 July 1880 in Dryden, Lapeer County, Michigan.

Ok, Dryden is where Mary, Harriet, Albert lived with Mortimer Hilliker in 1870 all with the last name Hilliker. So I went looking in the 1880 census; Albert is with Alfred in NY and I found a Harriet Gainer (Garver) in Hart, Oceana County, MI (which is on the other side of the state from Lapeer) living in the County Poor Farm. I don’t know if this is my Harriet or not, where Harriet was from 1870 census and her marriage date of 3 July 1880 I don’t know, and then from 1880 to 1900 I don’t know where the family is other than Saginaw County.¬† I did find that her full name was Harriett Amelia Garner, I love that middle name!!
This photo was found in an old Bible, that was Harriet (Garner) Neff’s. The man sitting is James Gilbert Neff. The boys are Howard & Charles Neff, I believe the one on the left is Howard & the one on the right is Charles.

Poem by Bert Webster

I find more & more of the desendants of the Light House Tribe are into writing, most specificly poetry. My mother wrote poem, as did some of her brothers & sisters, their mother Edith Webster-Lash wrote a ton of poems. Here is a poem by

Poem for thought

As I sit here all alone I thank the Lord I have a home.

And now I think I’ve found a gal that will make a real good Pal.

I know that we are getting old so lets not let our love grow cold.

So I nope that we both keep our sight so we will both do things right.

I know it’s hard to leave ones home but it’s much better than being alone.

We might be in a field of clover, so sit rightdown and think it over.

(Page 1)

I know good things are hard to find so don’t think we should change our mind.

And when I go to bed at night I lay and wonder if you will write.

And so if goes the whole night through, I just lay there and think of you.

I hope its plain for you to see so sit right down and write to me.

And tell me just how you feel so we can some day make a deal.

So I will sit and wish and try and so I’ll close and say by by.

With all my Love, Bert

(Page 2)

I just sit and ponder on how this poem was created, was Bert working on the railroad at this time and was Elizabeth (known as Lizzie to her family) living in Woodstock, Ontario, Canada or was she in America already? I wonder if they met while he was working on the line, or if they met through her half brother James. However they met, you can tell that he was smitten with her.

Wedding Day
November 1, 1906

They look so happy in their wedding photo… so sad that 15 short years later Lizzie died only 5 month after giving birth to the youngest of their four daughters of Acute Nephritis (Acute nephritis is a sudden inflammation of the kidney.).

2:54 AM Questions

Here it is 2:54 AM &¬† I can’t fall asleep.¬†(to be honest I haven’t really tried because I’m not tired!)¬† I have a dozen things going on in my head; things I want to try, things I want to create, things I want to get rid of.¬† None of which I can do right at this moment! Does anyone really read my blog?¬† Does anything I post on Facebook or Pinterest really matter? Does anything I write ever make an impact to anyone?¬† Does it help someone with their walk with the Lord?¬† Am I doing what God wants me to do or just what I want?¬† These are things I ponder as I lay here listening to my husband happily snore! ūüôā

This is what I get for sleeping in ’til almost noon yesterday!


Here I sit with my coffee cup and my laptop contemplating the days tasks that need to get done, & things I want to get done.¬† I woke up late today. It’s summer so I normally sleep until 9 ish, but today I woke up at 11:49 – WOW my kids let me sleep that long!¬† They are 11 & 8 so they are pretty self-sufficient.¬† They played their DS’s & did their chores!! Guess it’s “Amaze Momma” day ūüôā

Confession time! I am a horrible housekeeper!¬† My grandmother would be so at me everyday!¬† How on earth did my grandma do everything she did in a day with her job, working the family farm, raising 6 kids & have a spotless house!!!¬† Even when I lived with her, she was taking care of me, babysitting 3-6 extra kids a day, managing her my dad’s & my grandfather’s medicines (we had a pharmacy in our kitchen!), doing the bills, grocery shopping, preparing meals & a slew of other things she took care of for her ladies church organization… and she was RETIRED!

The month of June flew on by & July isn’t looking much better either!¬† With my son is Baseball & my husband in our church softball we’ve been running around like chicken’s with our heads cut off!¬† We had seven days that we didn’t have anything going in the whole of 30 days of the month of June, & most days we had 2 or 3 things going on in one day.¬† The house cleaning I admit got shoved to the bottom of the list of important things to do in my day, and I didn’t think about it until I actually sat down at the end of the day or on one of those 7 days & then I just tried to ignore as much as I could.¬† Now to be fair, the house wasn’t dirty, I mean there aren’t bugs or mice crawling around it’s just clutter. But oh how it piles up!¬† And how can I expect the kids to complete their chores if I’m not doing any of my jobs?¬† A friend told me that there is a law, it’s a natural law, it’s called THE LAW OF FLAT SURFACES – it means if there is a flat surface, things will pile up on it!¬† At my house we embrace that law! Everyone here (my husband, kids & yes even myself) throws everything on the counter! After a week the counters look horrible, almost like we are hoarders!¬† Then with all the clutter everywhere I feel guilty about the dirty house, if I spend time with the kids I feel guilty, if I clean I feel guilty, if I don’t do anything but relax I feel guilty.¬† Guilt, to be honest SUCKS!

I have found that my own self inflicted guilt is worse than any guilt others may try & force upon me.¬† So I am setting FIVE goals to help me erase guilt.¬† I¬†am addicted to Pinterest and found this Cleaning Schedule/Calendar for busy mom’s.¬† I know that it’s for mom’s that have a full-time job, but hey why can’t a busy stay at home mom us it too!?¬† That is my goal #1 is to follow the Cleaning Calendar, to make it work!¬† The calendar came from a Tips & Pix blog by Pixingo¬†I have seen other’s on Pinterest also but this is the one I printed out.¬† I have switched things around, added things & taken things off it to fit my needs & the needs of my family.¬† But the basic principle is the same. Goal #2 is to set weekly goals to complete.¬† These goals will be tackling big projects in the house that gets ignored, such as cleaning closets, clean/organize scrapbook table, collect unused things for yard sale or Goodwill, spend family¬†time together¬†etc.. Goal #3 Use my planner more!¬† I love my planner, I just don’t like the pages, and they don’t seem to help me with the things that I need to do!¬† Goal #4 Spend less time on Facebook, Pinterest &¬†online!¬† This is going to¬†be hard for me, I¬†do most of my genealogy research online &¬†I spend a lot of time on Facebook!¬† But really what am I doing?¬† I’m wasting time, I’m shutting my brain off & I’m getting lost in the world wide web!¬† Goal #5 Do something once a month just for me!¬† If that’s doing some genealogy or getting my nails done, I need time for me!

Ok so that’s the end of my goals & this post for the day! Off to do my morning chores & cut coupons! (Awe who am I kidding, I’m off to check my Facebook!! ūüôā then do my chores & cut coupons)


My cousin Coni took this photo up at the Barkhamsted LightHouse site.¬† It’s a very beautiful flower.¬† I ponder if James & Molly planted these because they loved the flower or because there was a purpose or even if it was a wild flower….

So my first step was to ask my friends on Facebook if they’d ever seens this kind of flower, I got one response, they thought it looked like the wild flower called Trillium.¬† I went to google & looked it up.¬† On Wikipedia it says “Picking a trillium seriously injures the plant by preventing the leaf-like bracts from producing food for the next year. A plant takes many years to recover. For this reason in Michigan, Minnesota and New York it is illegal to pick and/or transplant trilliums from public lands without a permit from the State.”

It goes on to say “Some trilliums have a flower which is bent downward, below the leaves.” It looks like this is what these are doing, and that “In a 1918 publication, Joseph E. Meyer called it “Beth Root” (probably a corruption of “birthroot”) and claimed that an astringent tonic derived from the root was useful in controlling bleeding and diarrhea” (Meyer, Joseph E. The Herbalist and Herb Doctor. Hammond, IN: Indiana Herb Gardens, 1918, p. 50.)¬† It is a wildflower, but I wonder if it is natural to Connecticut?

I’m sure James knew of its medicinal uses.¬† What other flowers & plants are up there that can be used for healing or something else.¬† If you see these flowers, take a pic, admire them but don’t pick them, it could be illigal plus it will harm the plant.

Cookie Dough Bites

Ok, so this post isn’t¬†going to be about genealogy… but maybe it is… something my grandmother passed down to me was cooking & baking… but I hate to bake, well I don’t hate it, I’m just really bad at it. HaHa!¬† I found this recipe on Pinterest… yep you found out my secret… I’m addicted to Pinterest! For Cookie Dough Bites, that you don’t cook!¬† I thought for the 94 degree weather we are having this will be great!!¬† It’s a simply recipe, with only 5 ingredients.


  • 1 cup salted butter, softened
  • 1¬Ĺ cups packed light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups flour
  • 6 ounces miniature chocolate chips

First step is to mix the butter & brown sugar, the recipe calls for it to be “creamed”¬† Then add all the other ingredients & mix well.

Save your beaters for your kids, mine think it’s a huge treat to get to lick the beaters, and how many of us did this when we were kids?!

The recipe says to use your hands, yeah I’m not into that… ha ha!! So I used my mixer.¬† Next you roll into balls, I used a cookie scoop and placed them on wax paper.¬† Then place into refrigerator to harden up.



The recipe says to “Dip in chocolate, drizzle with chocolate or eat as is — equally delicious no matter what!” I drizzled chocolate sauce on them.¬† Yummy!!¬† Make sure you¬†store them in the fridge as well!

Hope you enjoy this post as much as my family will enjoy these tonight after our BBQ Ribs ūüôā