Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Christmas and 2014 wrap up!

December was fast. Todd and I switched roles for the month and I worked full time and he stayed home with the girls. We wanted to do a little experiment to see what that life would be like. So be use of that situation, we didn't get to do many of the fun things I wanted to do. Nutcracker ballet, scavenger hunt, gingerbread houses...but we celebrated Christmas together and healthy-and that's all that matters.

First was our small group tacky Christmas party! It was a blast.

Then we had Grandaddy as our Christmas visitor :)
We looked at Christmas lights at life college
Christmas morning exploded and it was awesome!
We played the next few days and then nana and pawpaw came to visit!
Madyson always paints pawpaws nails-can you tell he has 5 grand daughters :) 

It was a fast yet enjoyable christmas-our first in Georgia.

I can believe we have lived here a whole year and so far their are no indications that is changing. 

2014 was insane! From moving-to homeschooling-to joining a new church and making new friends-to being on a reality tv show!? To ending this blog. I can't believe it is already over. 

I know what you are thinking....what's next?!? There is one more post in the coming days (3 or4) that will share the next step :) then I will archive the blog-have it printed into books and the years of the Broadus Bunch will be done. It has been an amazing 5 year journey with each of you coming along for the ride. Thank you for being our friend.   

Sunday, December 7, 2014

One year of a new life: Finale.

Wow. What An amazing weekend we have had. 

To catch you up-Friday I was on the season finale of TNT's On The Menu. A new reality show brought to you by Mark Burnett (Survivor, The Voice, The Bible..)

And....I won.
The meal that I cooked "Stampede Stew" is now on the menu at Dickeys BBQ pit across the nations. And the response has been great so far!

Here is a recap of the details of how all this happen.

In March, I was searching ads for auditions here in Atlanta for Aubrie Kate. It was my push to get her to start reading. When I stumbled upon the ad for the show. Thinking "why not"-I applied. Within 4 weeks, casting agents came to Atlanta from LA and I cooked for them and they video taped me. (I made catfish tacos) a few weeks passed and I had a ton of paper work to do. They have to know all about you, run background checks, etc. Finally, I got the call that out of 5,000 that auditioned I was one of the 40 selected to appear on the show. 

I found out a week before the show what restaurant I was cooking for. 

I prepared a lot. And I prayed even more. 

Let me be honest-I am not an "amazing chef" I am a good cook and i love cooking but I have terrible knife skills (probably because I have terrible knives) and I don't use a lot of salt (bc I don't like it)

I spent a lot of time in prayer asking God that if this was not His will for me-that I would be removed from the show for some reason. I didn't want to do anything that would hinder my witness of Him. 

Well, when they called to give me my flight schedule, I took it that I could do this-and he wanted me too.

So I got to LA and began the most insane week of my life. I had a dressing room, a lady that would bring me cokes and bananas anytime I asked, a make up artist, a quiet hotel was just crazy. 

I had read Carlos Whittakers book Moment Maker on the flight. He says, "we all have limitations, we all have fears. But JESUS meets us right where we are and he guides us through the steps to overcome them." He then tells a story about when he auditioned for the role as a Disney character-and with no dance experience kept moving forward in auditions because he owned it. He did what he knew and eventually became Eyore. So in my hotel room that night, before our first day on set, I decided I was going to be Eyore. I was going to use the gifts I knew God had granted me to my advantage and If it was meant to be for something to come from this-He would guide me. 

For those of you reading this that have never met me, let me give you an insight on my personality. I am a goofball-a nut- a silly SILLY person. I am not immature-i just always try to find joy in circumstances. I love to have fun and to smile. And I am really good at talking to people. Those are my God given strengths. So that was my armour. I woke up the first day of filming-prayed-put on my armour and headed out the door. Whatever was going to happen-God already knew. I was just going to be me. And me I was...for those who haven't watched...I got bleeped for saying "holy crap" when I made it through round one...I used the line "smells like a fart..." On national television and also said "sexiest stank you have ever tasted..." (Yes, my mother was a bit mortified)

Anyway. Each round passed and finally I was in the top 2. 

In round 2, I made cornbread with my meal. In California, they use yellow cornmeal, my maw always used Martha White buttermilk cornmeal...totally different textures and flavors. 

In round 3 I had to 45 minutes to make my final dish-with the ability to change anything. Without the cornmeal I normally cook with-i chose not to make it. I didn't want to lose because of a weakness in a side dish (although it really does help the meal!) It was a hard decision but yall-that yellow cornbread I served in round two-was not good. 

I knew that my meal was perfect for Dickeys BBQ pit because of product cost, southern style and easy prep time. 

I wanted to make sure that Mr. dickey knew that too-So I kept the main meal the same and spend most of my third round cooking time preparing my pitch in my head. 

When the time came to pitch it to the judges-I was ready. I knew Dickeys facts, I knew how much it cost to make this meal and I wanted the judges to see me as a competitor not the silly homeschool mom that said fart on national TV (and did the got edited out) 

I can tell you God was with me. My producer Karen had on a shirt that said "I can do all things through Christ that gives me strength" that day. When I saw her shirt through the bright gleams of the stage lights I knew...God was meeting me right there and was going to guide me through this Pitch. 

After the pitch don and I sat at the bar talking over our meals while the judges deliberated. Then it was time-and within 20 minutes...I was named the winner. When Ty Pennington called my name-I lost it. I cried and cried and cried and it took 2 takes for me to finally talk. (Yes they had to cut for a minute to get me to stop crying so I could breathe and talk) 

Yall-I am a mom from Mississippi and things like this don't just happen to people like me. I have always had a wild dream to cook for someone who knew food and could help shape my passion-but I never EVER thought it would happen. And I was okay with that. 

But when the moment came to give my HUGE dream a chance-God put me right where I needed to be. 

The prize? $25,000 dollars. I can't even fathom...and no, I haven't received it yet...they wait til after your show before you get it. Everyone has asked what I am going to do with it. And I have thought a little about what...I will pay off our debt-it's not much but it's there so it will be nice to have it wiped away-I will donate some & will save some. 

Saturday after the show, Mr. dickey came to Georgia and we rolled out the new item and met fans (that is still crazy to me) 

And people ate the stew-and shared it with me-
It was amazing! The support has been...the best part-I asked my facebook friends to send me photos if they watched....
....I have more and it's going to be a great scrapbook! 

With all the attention, I have really sat back and just absorbed what God has done the last few months-none of this would be possible without him. 

And I am so thankful for the mercy and Love of Lord to carry me through it all.

What's next? Has been the most asked questions-and the truth is-for me, I am satisfied- like I said, this was my wildest dream. I have had people ask if I am getting my own show-and as flattered as I am, I don't think there is a place on cable television for a homeschool mom who  compares the smell of her food to farts 😜. I am just going to enjoy this amazing, crazy experience and continue to be mom to 3. Wife to one. And maybe buy myself a new set of kitchen knives :).

Thursday, December 4, 2014

So tonight I'm gonna be on a reality tv show.

YAll. It is here. The day has come that my appearance on TNT's On The Menu is here!

I am extremely nervous and excited at the same time. I hear this is called "nervocited" 

The love and support i have received over the last few days from family, friends, past teachers and parents of friends has been so overwhelming. No matter the outcome I am blessed with such amazing people in my life.

When I agreed to be on the show, it was after many nights of prayer. I really wanted to make sure that God was on board with this idea and not against it. I begged him that if His plan was not for me to do this that It wouldnt happen. I can't wait to share with you next week just how spiritual this experience was for me. 

So tonight 7/8central on TNT catch me compete to have my dish on the menu!

Oh. My. Gosh!

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Operation Christmas Child

Today for school we learned about the Samartians Purse and Operation Christmas Child. 

Our church does a campaign called Be Rich and during this campaign we all pack shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child. This has been a holiday tradition of ours for years but this year we added the learning aspect to it.

We started off our lesson watching videos on the Samartians Purse site about how the boxes are distributed-success stories-and then we learned about Haiti (a country that is big on our families hearts) and the kids there. 

We discussed and made a list of items the kids and their families may need.

Things like cups, plastic utensils, ponchos, soap, tolietries, bandaids...

Then some items the girls wanted to include. 

A doll, a jump rope, note pads, candy.

And we headed or to the dollar store. 

I let the girls just start picking items. 
And they had a great time. "She will need this..." "Oh mom she needs socks!" This unknown child somewhere wasn't being thought Of as a stranger-she was a she and a friend they were shopping for. 

When we came home we got to packing...

That's what they decided! 
Items are
A book
A doll
A toothbrush and paste
A notebook
A jump rope
Snack containers
Soap and a wash cloth
Jolly ranchers
A small bag
We used every inch of space. The snack containers held the jolly ranchers 
The cups had the gum and plastic utensils.
And the we took the bandaids out of their box and put them into an Elsa ziploc bag and buy them in the little bag. That way each item they opened had a special something inside. 
Two full happy boxes were then prayed over and a letter and photo of us included. Letting our new friend know that we love her but most importantly JESUS loves her! 

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


So the holidays are upon us and it's going to be a different year. We will be in Georgia all holiday season. That means the first holiday ever I will have without my family. I am beyond devestated but logistically it's the best decision. 

My mom is coming for thanksgiving. But my dad is staying in Mississippi. 

Our family has always done xmas eve together-so I asked my parents to stay in MS for xmas to keep the tradition with my brother and sister in law and niece and nephews. It's hard to have a lot of kids, esp when one moves away. Because I had to move, it's not fair for my parents to have to chose. And it's not fair for my siblings to miss out on nana and pawpaw. 

My wish was to have everyone here for xmas-bc my dad is retired, my mom and sister are off for school holidays...but my brother works weird schedule. So that puts him not being able to make the trip. I had big plans for a big family Christmas with Christmas morning breakfast-(my brother is the breakfast chef) and a day in Jammies. But it's not going to happen and truthfully-it makes me really bummed. My nieces and nephews are my other kids and I have never missed a holiday with them. 

Since my holidays are missing family-I've been on a kick to get all my decor out-I thought if I could make my house merry it might fill the void of not having them here. 

So I pulled out all the decor and sure enough I'm missing some very key items. 1. Our elf on the shelf. I know I can go buy another but that's not the point. He was our little elf and he holds special memories.

2. Santa pictures for 3 years. I have 2006, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013. I'm missing 2007, 2011, 2012. They are no where online or in any photo box. 

3. A ton of family ornaments.

4. My manger scene 

These little things hold special memories for me. They help me feel like our family is near. And I'm just really sad that I have misplaced them. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Great kids snacks

It has been a bit since we received our great kids snack box and I wanted to share a few more things we did with our box. 

My girls have never had granola (outside of a chocolate chip bar) so when we had multiple packets of granola in our box we made yogurt sundaes and added the granola in! 
aubrie kate also decided to make a "peanut butter and granola roll up" for a snack one afternoon! She was so proud of her creation! And she ate it all!

Mommy got in on snack this day. With lentil chips paired with some hummus. I am a huge chip fan and these did not disappoint!
The great kids snack box has been a huge blessing for this momma! Knowing that the kids are exploring new flavors and healthy ones at that sure does ease my mind! 

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Raising Girls: the day I lost my....


Saturday's I usually leave for work around 1:30-2pm and arrive home 1:00-2:00am. It's a long night and Sunday mornings come EARLY. 

We have church at 9am and then youth at 11. So I am usually running on coffee fuel on Sunday's. 

I have one rule for Saturday nights: get your sunday morning stuff together. It just makes the morning rush easier when your jacket, shoes, outfit is all ready.

Well-this particular sunday morning nothing was done. No shoes out, no jackets out. It was where is my.....I can't find my....

A battle that I am in at this phase of life is to teach the girls to be responsible for their things. I happily wash, dry, fold and put hang ups on hangers. I deliver them to their rooms and neatly put them on their bed. Their job is to put them up. That simple. Our shoes are either in our closet or in the shoe basket by the door. (Atleast that is the rule) if you take them off in the car and forget to bring them in...that's on you. 

Some people think this is asking a lot of the girls but I truly believe that kids value their stuff when they are responsible to take care of it. 

So back to Sunday morning...I went to wake the girls up and all chaous broke loose. And  as a result they went to church without their jackets because they  had forgotten where they took them off. Luckily it wasn't too cold.

Afterwards I decided that maybe a closet full of clothes is too much for them to handle. So I narrowed down their wardrobe to 10 outfits. Then their shoes to boots, church shoes and play shoes...1 pair each. And then their jackets 1 each. 14 things. That's what they have for the month of November. 
Raising girls is more than making sure they look cute and become good wives and moms. I want to raise good girls that care about others and that care about taking care of the blessings that they have. It's not about the "things" it's about caring for them. Being thankful for them.