Saturday, November 1, 2014

Saturday Inspiration

Friday, October 31, 2014

"My Grace Is Sufficient"

"My grace is sufficient." Over and over, all day long today that statement kept going through my head. I needed to be reminded of it. I needed to hold on to it.
In a recent post, I shared about how my husband has been having eye trouble. (Here is the original post.) He has Proliferative Diabetic Retinopathy with a Vitreous Hemorrhage. That's a mouth full to say. It's much more to live with. Many people experience this medical condition, but it doesn't make it easier to deal with when it happens to you.

It started in his right eye. It's a frightening thing to lose vision in one eye. But yesterday, October 30th, he lost the vision in his left eye too. He is 80-90% blind. All he can see are flashes of movement and shadows, lots of shadows.

It has been a flurry of activity since then.

"My grace is sufficient."

For 4 weeks we have been going back and forth to a retina specialist getting treatments to prevent the very thing that happened in his left eye from ever happening. Tests, multiple dilations (three this week alone), shots, laser surgery twice, arranging payment plans with the billing office, and hours sitting in waiting rooms praying that the blood in his right eye would start to dissolve and be absorbed into his body like any blood is with a bruise or cut.

When his second eye started to bleed and he could see it happening his initial reaction was some fear, a little panic, and then to get help right away. We were able to get into the doctor in just a few hours. It was agreed that he needed emergency surgery and it was scheduled for Tuesday, November 4th.
Then a big, no giant ball got was made of money.

"My grace is sufficient."

Before the surgery would even take place, between the doctor and the hospital they needed from us $12,000. Yep, $12,000. I thought the same thing you probably did.

"Are you serious? Who has $12,000 sitting around available to hand you?"

There is no insurance. We can't afford it. We are overqualified for assistance of any kind. We sat there taking in what the nurse told us and felt this overwhelming pressure on our lives. Help is available and the prognosis was very good. One short 30-45 minute surgery and he would be able to see again in at least one eye. But right in front of us was this giant $12,000 obstacle!

"My grace is sufficient."

The nurse was very sweet and made some calls to see if she could find some help for us, someone who could do the surgery for less or even free. She took a few moments and came back with a name and a phone number and a big dose of hope! A clinic in Illinois could help us. We could get in Friday, October 31st if we could go.

We could and we did!

This morning we left at 6:30 AM with a dear friend and high hopes of finally getting this eye problem under control. With hopes that my blind husband would again see and be able to function without the help of a seeing-eye-wife. We were anxious, excited, and thankful that things would turn around and quickly.

"My grace is sufficient."

The clinic was easy to find in Chicago. The doctor who initially assessed his condition was hopeful. He called in a colleague to verify things. She wasn't sure about something she saw in his left eye. They called in another more specialized doctor to confer with them. And then even another. They were being thorough and saying that there were no retina problems and the blood in his eye could be removed. This was reversible and that they could do the surgery for sure.

The appointment was set for Monday, November 3rd.
Remember that first giant ball that dropped? It dropped again!

What we had been told by one office was not the case at all in another. What once would have been covered for free, yes free, no longer was because of Obamacare rules and regulations. Help that we were told was there now was not. There was nothing they could do even though they sincerely wanted too. There was nothing we could do. All that hope we had at the start of the day had been dashed.

"My grace is sufficient."

We asked lots of questions. Now what? Where can we go? What can we do? People were so helpful and tried to get us answers. They called offices and organizations, messaged individuals, contacted people in our state and in Illinois, and gave us as much information as they could. Several of them even cried with us as we struggled to deal with the fact that we had a solution right in front of us and could not get over or around the obstacle between us and that solution, that giant ball.

The day was long and we were tired. Eight hours we were at the eye clinic and it seemed like the longest eight hours of our lives. All afternoon I kept hearing in my head "My grace is sufficient," over and over. I held on to it like a lifeline. It was what I needed to hear. It was what my husband needed to be reminded of.
Paul was very clear when he wrote those words inspired by the Holy Spirit in  II Corinthians 12: 9-10. He knew suffering. He knew pain. He also knew what Christ had gone through for him and for me and Rick.

9. And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 10. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. (NKJV)

I can admit unabashedly that I am weak right now. I'm not afraid or ashamed to say it. My husband is hurting and I hurt with him. There is no possible way I can figure out how Rick and I will get through this. It is overwhelming to us and to the many people who love us and call us family and friend. But I do know my God. I know that in my weakness I still have strength, a strength that can get me through and beyond what I can only see as a big giant obstacle in the road. It's a strength that can hold my husband up when he feels so discouraged, vulnerable, and helpless.
Believe it or not, I am rejoicing in this weakness. It's hard, but deep, deep inside there is this flame of hope I have that I know is the strength that only Christ can give. I am looking forward to that flame growing. We don't know the outcome. Rick may regain his vision. He may remain blind for the rest of his life. We won't dwell on that. We will, however, dwell on His promise, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.”

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Holiday Of Surprises Giveaway Event Week #2

Holiday Of Surprises Giveaway Event Week #2

Welcomes You To The

Holiday Of Surprises Giveaway Event Week #2

1 Grand Prize Winner

Super Size your Thanksgiving  Decorations with this Thanksgiving Turkey Inflatable for indoor or outdoor use.  Forget the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade, you can now have your own Giant 6 Foot Turkey Inflatable this year to help celebrate Thanksgiving right in own front yard!
This Gemmy Air Blown Inflatable Thanksgiving Decoration comes with built in Heavy Duty fan, internal lights to create a glowing night-time display, yard stakes, stand and tethers.

  • The skeletons turn their heads and brandish their swords.
  • Self-inflates in seconds
  • Weather-resistant material
  • Deflates for easy storage
  • Includes everything needed for set-up
  • A complete Halloween scene in one

This 50” Gentle Spirits® outdoor windchime is a striking piece that will creatively adorn your outdoor space. Made with aluminum alloy pipes and UV resistant nylon cord, this chime is built for the outdoors. Hang it from a tree, deck or porch, and enjoy!
Overall Length (Inches):50-inch
Number of Tubes:6
Hand-Tuned to Scale:B
Length of Longest Tube (inches):26 1/8"
Weight:11.00 lbs
Brand:Gentle Spirits®

 This 50” Gentle Spirits® outdoor windchime is a striking piece that will creatively adorn your outdoor space. Made with aluminum alloy pipes and UV resistant nylon cord, this chime is built for the outdoors. Hang it from a tree, deck or porch, and enjoy!

300 Indoor / Outdoor Icicle Light Set.

We've created this gift box especially for the person who loves variety. Almondina's® Assorted 8-Cookie Gift Box includes two bags of The Original and one bag each of our other six delicious flavors, all packed in a beautiful gift box with a ribbon.

Share the taste of natural goodness with The Original - full of crunchy almonds and plump raisins, AlmonDuo® - the irresistible taste of almonds and pistachios, Cinnaroma® - for the cinnamon lover, Gingerspice - with zesty chunks of flavorful, real ginger, Anniversary™ - the Original with a hint of anise,Sesame - exotic roasted sesame with almonds and raisins andChoconut - a rich tasting chocolate cookie. Each Almondina® biscuit is unique and has no cholesterol; no preservatives and no added fat or salt. Your gift recipient will enjoy trying them all!  read full review.

Deck the halls and celebrate the season with this holly jolly assortment of TVs merriest moments from 12 of the most beloved shows of all-time!  Whether you're singing carols with the Partridges or bah humbug-ing with the Bundys, this DVD collection is the one stocking stuffer you can enjoy all year long!

 4-Movie Holiday: If You Believe/Pilgrimage Play/Great Rupert/Christmas Carol

Don't find yourself in the dark during an emergency. Illuminate shadows with a few minutes cranking of the handle. It's perfect for the home, car, boat or campground and features versatile search light and lantern settings. A comfortable, easy-grip handle and hanging hook make it a cinch to carry and hang.
• Use at home, in the car or boat, or while camping
• One minute of cranking yields 30 minutes of light
• No power source needed
• Use as a tabletop or hanging lantern
• Use as a search light
• Encased in plastic and rubber material for reliable use, even in inclement weather
• Lightweight and easy to carry

Family Finest Pizza and Cookie Kits

Make-N-Bake Pizza Paks ... Turn Pizza Night into Pizzazz Night!
Our Make-N-Bake Pizza Paks include everything you need to turn boring pizza night into pizzazz night! Each pizza pak includes ingredients to make four personal homemade pizzas: authentic pizza dough, Italian pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese and tangy pepperoni. To find the fresh taste of your next homemade pizza, look no further than the Dairy Aisleat your local Walmart store, we're better than any frozen pizza you'll find!
Family Finest Make-N-Bake Pizza Paks are perfect for: after school snacks, Friday night family parties, college dorms, sleepovers, pool parties and appetizers. Easily make one to four homemade pizzas at a time with our convenient re-sealable cheese, pepperoni and sauce packs.

With all the delicious holiday treats and meals coming we all want to keep a watch on out weights. Nothing will do that better than the Eat Smart  Precision Max  View Digital Bathroom Scale. 

 EatSmart Bathroom Scales are super accurate, easy to use and uniquely designed to perfectly match the decor in any home. Our scales are engineered to the highest precision standards to provide you with consistently reliable products. Stop guessing your weight and let our scales help you get serious about your fitness and weight loss goals.

The EatSmart Precision MaxView is versatile, easy to use and great for any home. Simply step on the scale and in seconds you'll have an accurate readout on the Eat Smart's over-sized 4.5" LCD display, one of the largest on the market today.  The sleek, modern design complements any surrounding and weighs up to 400 lbs.

 Named The Best Barbecue Sauce in Kentucky in the
July/August Issue of Every Day with Rachel Ray.

With numerous barbecue awards under it's belt there is no wonder why your meat falls right off the bone when you try Bourbon Q Sauce on all of your meats this Holiday Season. Kentucky Bourbon Q presents you with a collection of gourmet sauces born in the U.S. A. Winner of world championships, national awards and regional contests, Bourbon is proud to introduce a collection of sauces that is the reason it has won so many national awards.

This Gift Box contains the following selections of sauces.

*Mango Chiplote "Chicks Dig Me" Barbecue Sauce
* Not Made in China Barbecue Sauce
*Pappy's Moonshine  Madness  Barbecue Sauce

Click Here To Visit the Bourbon Q Website Today Make Sure To Follow The on Social Media A s Well On

A Big Thank You To All Of Our Sponsors

This giveaway is in no way endorsed, associated or affiliated with Facebook, Twitter or any other Social Media Networking Site. This giveaway is valid in the Continental United States only. Entrants must be 18+ years of age to enter. This giveaway will come to a end at 12:00 AM (EST) 11/14/14.

Holiday Contest and Sweeps and The Minister's Wife Stamps and Saves received no type of compensation for this giveaway. Each individual sponsor will be responsible for awarding each of their prizes to the winner.
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Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Find Out How Plastic bags Can Be Recycled

Learn how plastic bags get recycled and earn points from Recyclebank. Plus the chart is a great educational reference for your whole family!

Click the image above to get your points!

What Does "Organic" Really Mean?

Watch and learn what "organic" really means and earn 30 Recyclebank points. Great info in this video!! Organic and natural are not the same thing.

Click the image to get your points!

FREE Sample of Southern Breeze Sweet Tea

Request a FREE sample of Southern Breeze Sweet Tea. This is a great tea that is sugar free and calorie free! You need to like them on Facebook and the fill in your info to get your sample.

Click the image above to get yours!

Monday, October 27, 2014

First Birthday Gift Guide Giveaway

Welcome to the First Birthday Gift Guide Giveaway!first birthday gift guide giveaway

Hosted by: 

Moms and Crafter's big boy has just turned one! With so many people asking around about the perfect first birthday gift, Moms and Crafters has put together a 1st birthday gift guide, together with the ultimate list of best gifts for a first birthday, from the perspective of a mom. You can check out more of the features of the Year of Parenthood Celebration event, including loads of 1st birthday resources, with more coming soon! To top it off, Moms and Crafters arranged this amazing giveaway! One winner will receive the entire prize pack, valued at approximately $258! Check out the reviews on each of the prizes below, then enter to win. There are some fun gifts for any 1 year old!

First Birthday Gift Guide Giveaway Prize List:

first birthday gift guide giveaway

Bright Starts Hide n Spin Monkey | ARV $40

This fun, friendly monkey is a favorite! Put the balls in the monkey's hat, and watch them spill out of the barrel. With loads of lights and sounds, baby is sure to be entertained for hours.

Bright Starts 3 in 1 Step n Ride Li0n | ARV $40

Another great toy from Bright Starts! A year is the perfect time to learn new skills such as walking and riding... This versatile convertible toy will save you lots of space as it converts from a ride-on to a walker!

Freshly Picked Moccasins | ARV $60

These fun leather soft shoes are perfect to keep feet warm! They are great for new walkers who do better then they can feel the floor.

Menucha Mommy 'n Me Bracelet Set | ARV $30

A great gift for a little girl, this adorable gift set indulges Mommy as well. Because, isn't she the one who has been investing lots of love this past year?

Austin Lloyd Mystery Box | ARV $50

This subscription box is full of age-appropriate toys. Everything in it is eco-friendly and non-electronic. It features high quality toys that will delight baby again and again.

Funbites | ARV $13

This easy to use food cutter will cut baby's food to bite size pieces in one quick, easy step. It comes with a popper to pop the food out of the holes. Available in 3 shapes and many vivid colors.

Yummi Pouch Brights Set | ARV $15

Reusable food pouches are a great way to do teach baby to self-feed while saving money. You can choose what your baby eats, while doing something good for our earth.

That's Not My Tractor | ARV $10

This fun book is a touchy feely book by Usborne to develop sensory awareness. It's a board book so it's more durable for little ones. (If out of stock, it will be replaced with a different book of similar value.) Open to residents of the US ages 18+. Enter to win using the giveaway tools form below:

Disclaimer: Sponsors mentioned above are responsible for prize fulfillment. Moms and Crafters and the participating blogs can not be held responsible for sponsors who do not follow through. Moms and Crafters received these items free from the company for review purposes. No compensation monetary or otherwise was received for the running of this giveaway. If you'd like to see your brand featured on Moms and Crafters, contact Menucha at