Friday, January 29, 2016

Fashion Tip Friday.

The midst of winter.
The time where we feel the most UN-beautiful.

Our skin is dry and faded and pasty from the lack of sunshine on our face.
We're trying to break our sugar addictions and get back into a healthy routine...
....but sweet treats still call. {Oh this is such a hard one for me!}

I long for a tan. healthy hair. brighter eyes. a less tired body.
and quite honestly...I get tired of those chunky sweaters I was so excited about back in October.
How about you?

Sometimes all I need is a little inspiration to get back on the right track.
a picture of someone pretty. an article written.
a recommendation of something wonderful from a friend.
{sometimes seeing myself in a dressing room is inspiration enough...Ha!}

My sisters ^ sisters and I would like to be your inspiration this winter!
During the month of February we will be sharing and hosting and giving!

We will share some of our favorite beauty products. beauty tips. clothing ideas.
By the end of February you will feel like a brand new new you. {or at least be a little inspired}

Looking forward to February.
Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

A movie concerning your chocolate cake falling apart...on National Chocolate Cake Day.

What do you do when your chocolate cake that you worked SOOOO hard on
crumbles to pieces on National Chocolate Cake Day?

1. You can cry.
2. You can visit your nearest bakery.
3. You can choose to Not eat chocolate cake...but really...what kind of person would do that?
4. You can turn your cake into a shake! {Hey..if Portillo's can do it.....}

The Chocolate Cake Shake....
{Let me tell you..WOW! Not sure which is better? The cake or the shake?}

Last year's Chocolate Cake movie {if you're interested}

And I know the world doesn't really like him anymore....but Bill's chocolate cake story.
...I crack up every.single.time.

HaPpY NaTiOnAl ChOCoLaTe CaKe DaY!!!
Let them eat cake....

Monday, January 25, 2016

Around here lately.... at the table.
..piano practice.
.....playing in the snow. {I'm quite jealous of everyone out east...all that beautiful snow!}
...homemade chicken soup and breadsticks.
....afternoon naps under warm blankets.
...slower, later mornings....

...that's what winter is made of around here.

...and this little guy found a long forgotten King Size Kit Kat way back in a kitchen cabinet
he was playing in. It was supposed to be on top of a Christmas gift...Whoops!

We were all with him..but obviously not paying attention!
By the time we realized what he was doing,
he made his way through almost the entire candy bar! and was quite happy about it.

Hope your week is off to a great start.
Happy Monday.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Hey Ladies...Here are 10 things you need to hear.

It was late in the evening....
I had just finished giving Jeff a verbal list of what HE has been
doing wrong lately concerning our marriage.

There was a lot I had to say. Other women would've been "Amen-ing" all over my little lecture.

With arrogant confidence  a self righteous attitude a poor, heart broken....I went up to bed...alone.
He said he was going to finish taking care of some things and would be upstairs in a minute.

Head on my pillow, I opened up my iPad to read a little when what to my surprise should pop up!?
 10 Ways to Win Your Spouse Over  

Look how the Lord provides....I knew this was probably just what Jeff needed to hear.
Thinking we could read over the list "together" I quickly started scanning to see if it was up to par.

It took all of 3 minutes for me to feel horrible. HORRIBLE!!!

{Thank you Darlene Schacht for once again opening my eyes to the self centered-ness that is in me.}

The Time Warp Wife listed 10 ways to keep your marriage alive. 10 ways to be a good wife.

Number 1. Don't compare him to other men.
I wasn't comparing him to other men....but I was comparing us to other couples.
You know, the perfect couples that vacation every weekend in Hawaii and go on romantic dates every single night. You don't know anyone like that? Riiiiiggght...because they don't exist!

Number 2. Don't try to fix him.
Guilty. I was doing fixing...or at least trying to.

Number 3. Pray for him daily.
I pray for get to work and home safe each day, to have a good day...but pray for him?
...REALLY pray for him...I've been lazy about praying for my husband.

Then I got to Number 9...Out serve him.
Wow! I have NOT been doing this.

I had a lot to say about his time management, yet my little schedule could use some tweaking.

If you're going to call someone to the carpet, you better make sure you vacuumed your own rug first.
Yes, I had reason to be upset...but the way I handled it could have been better.

I also let myself be blinded to what I was doing wrong.
I absolutely love Time-Warp Wife.Her story is amazing and she always points me in the right direction.

Marriage can be tough sometimes...but it's also one of the greatest gifts on the planet!
Don't waste precious time letting silly things get in the way of the two of you.

So read her list of 10 ways and be encouraged.

Now go love your spouse.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Ode to Cheese...Happy National Cheese Lover's Day.

Growing up I'd have a piece of American cheese on a sandwich or cheddar on my taco.
At the age of seventeen I was introduced to cream cheese at a church brunch... that point, I would have considered myself well rounded in the cheese world.

Then I met Jeff. Cheese King of the universe.

"I love cheese" he said. "Me too!" I agreed.
I soon came to realize his love ran a bit deeper than the Romano blend I thought was so fancy.

Jeff ate cheese in chunks, not slices. Jeff made meals out of cheese.
His motto..."Everything is better with cheese".
He's right.

In the past few years we have become lovers of the cheese spread.
We always  put out a simple cheese spread at Thanksgiving and New Year's....
...simple because other foods trump holidays..silly old turkey.

However, I am super excited to go all out with my sister this upcoming weekend
at an event we get to help her and her husband cater. {pictures next week..I promise!}

So in honor of National Cheese Lover's Day...
...a few fun facts I've learned about putting out a cheese tray.

1. Cheese should be eaten at room temperature...make sure to take cheese out an hour before serving.
2. On a cheese tray, have a variety..but usually no more than five to six choices.
3. Figure an ounce of cheese per cheese per person.
4. While eating cheese,you want to start with the most mild and work your way up to the sharpest.
5. Pair cheese with crackers, breads, dried berries, fresh fruit, nuts and even olives!

If you live in Chicago or New York...check out this place.
They have an amazing cheese selection. {amazing everything selection..I love it there.}

...and can we please just take a moment for this wedding cake made completely of cheese?
{sorry no photo credit..I found this circling the internet with no link back to where it came from}

I think Jeff would plan a whole wedding and marry me again this weekend to have this cake!

Now go eat a piece of cheese to celebrate the day.
Cheese is everywhere...and the plethora in today's grocery store leaves
you no excuse to try something new.

Happy Cheese Day.

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Things I love about winter #37.

I know I am in the minority when I say this.....but I love winter. I do.
I love all seasons because there are little {and big} things to love about each one.

One of the things I love about winter is the midday light.
It's so crisp and bright and clean. {but also shows all the dust and little finger prints...Ha!}

Sammy found this ladder in a burn pile......I confiscated it from him since
I'm the Mom and it would be used for the good of the whole family...
I told Jeff I wanted something fun done with it....He created this for my kitchen ceiling.
He's so great.

...helping his brothers get wood...can you see the little piece in his left hand?
That kept the fire going for a while. ;)

This chart was posted on Facebook over the weekend...
...I'm sure all my Chicago friends will appreciate it. it's so funny and quite a bit true.

Except I have faith in the Cubbies!!! 2016 is their year!

Happy Winter Days.

Monday, January 11, 2016

We do school at home.

Homeschooling #5
When you feel like giving up after weeks of no school because you now have lazy habits
and have basically turned into a sugar eating sluggard...Oh wait, maybe that's just me. ;)

Today was our first real day back at school since Christmas break.
I was NOT in a school sort of mood.
There was not one cell in my body that had a desire to teach.

I had a beautiful schedule and a beautiful plan I worked on over the weekend...
....but when today rolled around...Ugh.

The kids were all happy to get back on track.
It was me. I just wanted to sit with coffee and read blogs and watch old Doris Day episodes.
You know, important stuff.

After breakfast I handed the girls their workbooks hoping they didn't need me right away.
They did. Of course.

They couldn't understand the directions without having me explain.
I started having thoughts.....

"Were you listening the first half of the school year?"
"You can remember I said we're going to the park, but you can't remember what a verb is?"
"Does snow kill brain cells?"
"Why isn't The Doris Day Show a curriculum?"
"Could I write a Doris Day curriculum? Hmmm...."
"Forgetting parts of speech must come from your father's side."

It's days when I'm feeling lazy and selfish.
Days when the kids are bickering.
Days when everything is going wrong....
...that would make it easy to quit homeschooling.

You have bad days as a mom, but you would never stop being a mom!
You have bad days as husband and wife, but you aren't going to get a divorce!
You have bad hair days, but you're not going to shave your head over it!

So why quit if you have a bad day homeschooling?

Bad homeschooling days are going to happen.
It's NOT a reason to give up. You have to stay committed.

Remember all the reasons you started this adventure in the first place.
Nothing in life is perfect...even homeschooling.

Push through and conquer. You're better than a bad day. {or a lazy day in my case}
God will give you the grace you need to get through it.

You can do it Moms.
You just need to stop and focus.

When I focus on each of my kids and actually look at them as individuals that need to learn
instead of a group of kids I have to teach... I feel guilty!
They are depending on me!

Being a Mom is a big job. an honor. a blessing. a gift from God....with eternal rewards.
It's makes being a couch potato for a day look selfish and awful.

Those little {and big} people are depending on you.
Whether it's homeschooling or just motherhood in general....
...take your roll seriously. You're the one they need ever so much.
You are...Mom.


Friday, January 8, 2016

Fashion Tip Friday~

Welcome to Fashion Tip Friday, where you will learn how to be more fashionable.
Or at least know what's up even if you want to continue to dress out of style. {insert wink}

So here's a great trend.

What girl doesn't love to wear pretty, feminine ruffles?

This spring you will start to see them everywhere...if you haven't already.

I'm deciding between the dress above and the dress below to wear this summer....
{...courtesy of Anthropologie gift cards.
can we talk about how ridiculous their prices for simple cotton can be sometimes...}

I love the ruffled dress Sophia is wearing. I bought it forever ago....'s always been one of my favorites. Sadly it's a tad bit too small and won't fit her this summer.

{It's listed on my sister's Mercari site if you're interested.
...also check out her beautiful handmade winter bonnets...I love them.}

Hope you have a lovely winter-y weekend.
Tomorrow is snow and we will be going for a walk and baking banana bread.

Happy Friday.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Five things this Monday.

1. We celebrated just like the rest of the world with board games and sparkling apple-peach juice.
...and now we're in a fresh new year. and a fresh new January.

2. Snow finally came...after Christmas, but it came nonetheless. We love it.

3. While my sister was up here from Texas celebrating Christmas with us...
....she had her baby! at 29 weeks. We had a baby shower planned..instead there was a birth!
Maybe you followed along on her Instagram.   {if not, you can read about it there}
Baby Shaylene will be in the NICU for the next couple of months..but she is doing great.
Everyone is thankful.

4. We haven't started school yet....but today we took a trip to the library and checked out 1,000 books.
Go ahead, ask us any question you want about Ancient about 2 weeks.

 5. Dave Ramsey books are off the shelf. Big changes coming to our household.
{changes will be null and void when I am in the city, at Target or at the mall}

Happy new week, month, year!!!