Monday, March 30, 2015

Our Morning Routine

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I am starting my very first blog series.
I get asked quite often...
"How do you do it?"
(this makes me laugh because I don't!)
Or sometimes...
"What do you do all day?"
(Now this one I understand and often ask myself!)
 
So here we go....

Before I even start,
you MUST understand that this "routine"
is on an ideal day. 
This is what we strive for.
This is how I like it.
BUT... I live in a child centered home.
So trust me when I say,
nothing around here is perfect!
 
My day starts between 5 and 5:30 am.
I know, I know... it is sooo early!
But it is the only time I can get in any exercise!
If the baby slept well, then I 've slept well...
So I get up at 5 and do a 4 mile walk with Leslie Sansone.
If it was a rough night...
I sleep in to 5:30 and just walk two miles.

I reward myself with coffee and my bible time at 6:00.
Let me tell you, it really is my favorite part of the morning.
My favorite bible studies are from GoodMorningGirls.Com.
 
At 6:30 I bring my husband his coffee
 and wake him up.
I spared him from a picture for the blog,
as he is not much of a morning person!
We will chat, check the weather,
and maybe watch some news until around 6:45.

This is when I start my one load of laundry.
I finally figured out a system that works for me,
unfortunately is does include laundry
 every. single. day.

 
On this particular morning,
Molly added these to the basket of clothes...
she must really love me and knew I needed a laugh!

 Then it is time to make breakfast...
I have a go to menu to take
the thought right out of  it.
Muffin Monday
Taco Tuesday
Waffle Wednesday
 Piggy Thursday
(I wanted Thirsty Thursday, but my kids do not care for smoothies)
Favorite Friday
While the two big kids have breakfast,
I read out of our devotional book.

What I love about this book is that
there is not an order... you just go by date.
Each devotional stands alone, so if you miss a day,
it is not big deal.

They are also short and sweet.
Each day has a memory verse and a prayer.
My kids just love it!
 
So now it is about 7:30am.
Mike gets dressed for school and
if we have plans Addy will get dressed now too.
While they do I pack Mike's lunch.

As Daddy and Mike head off to school and work,
I will switch the laundry into the dryer.

 
Around 7:50 I am making my bed.
I make my bed every day...
it is my thing!
Some girls have a shiny sink or vacuum to get going...
but for me it is making my bed!

Around 8am Miss Molly Ann wakes up.
 
and she has her breakfast while I clean up the kitchen.
 
I do not run my dish washer at night like most girls.
I clean the kitchen and load the dishes after dinner,
but I run it after breakfast.
This way the kids get to unload it for me
 as their after school chore.
Smart, huh?

If the girls and I have plans...
currently dance, art, or bible study
we get ALL dressed around 8:30.

If we do not have morning plans then the girls will watch
a show or two and cuddle on the couch.

Molly finds Dora's friend, Boots wildly funny!

and I will go over my plan for the day
with another cup of coffee!
So by 9:00am we are either
 headed out the door or I start a few chores.
I start with a quick tidy of the bathroom and
 fold that one load of laundry!
I make myself fold and put away those clothes. 
 
Molly usually starts "un-choring"
I made that word up,
but if you have ever had a toddler
you know exactly what that means.
 
Do you have a morning routine?
Is it a general plan or pretty specific?
 
 

Monday, March 23, 2015

YouTube LOVE


I really wanted to do a post on
my current VERY favorite YouTube channels.
However, I found it impossible to post
 a photo and link and
brief description for each channel.
 
 
 
Thus, the birth of yet another Pinterest Board!
So, pinned are my current go to girls for,,,
Mommy Motivation
Happily A Housewife
Kinder Crafty
Being a Mommy With Style
Organization
Organized Little Lady
Live Love Latte
My Great Challenged
Home Making
OCD Much?
How Jen Does It
Life Style
Mrs. Gold Girl
Pretty, Shiny, Sparkly
Jennifer Ross
 
 
If you have read my blog for awhile,
then you know I WAS a big blog reader...
then I got pregnant with #3 and
had severe morning sickness...
I could not read without getting very sick.
But I could watch!
 
As you can see,
even after Molly was born I had my hands full,
and watching these girls on YouTube allowed me to
not only stay motivated and multitask,
they helped me feel like I had friends over for a quick visit.
You know, friends you don't have to get dressed for,
friends you can fold laundry or scrub the sink while they talk,
friends who make you laugh and feel normal...
even when your entire "friendship" is not normal!
 
As a matter of fact,
I would like to start my own channel someday,
in hopes of being a "friend" to other mommies
who are in the same season of life I was in...
well, still in!
 
 
HERE is a link to all the girls I watch.
Who do you watch?
 
 

Friday, March 20, 2015

St. Patrick's Day Fun


Ok, I have to keep it real here...
First, let me blame sleep deprivation,
as Miss Molly has been under the weather
and teething like a maniac.
Thus, I totally thought St Patrick's Day
was Wednesday; not Tuesday!
Eeek, mommy fail!!
This is why you will not see us wearing much green.
 So once I realized my mistake,
 I got LUCKY
and pulled out a few fun activities!
 We played this silly game with chocolate coins.
I found these at my grocery store for $1.
The kids were busy up stairs and
I quickly hid them around the front room.
I called them down stairs and said,
"The Lucky Leprechaun was here!
He hid his gold and hoped you wouldn't find it!"
 They caught on quick and started hunting!
The next two rounds they were the Lucky Leprechaun!
As you can see by Adelyn's face,
she enjoyed trying to trick her big brother!
 
http://www.amazon.com/Ten-Lucky-Leprechauns-Kathryn-Heling-ebook/dp/B00AM4Y0J6/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1426856191&sr=1-1&keywords=10+little+leprechauns
We do own many St. Patrick's Day books.
But we do like this one.

http://www.amazon.com/St-Patricks-Day-Morning-Bunting/dp/0899191622
This Even Bunting is a classic.
While you are looking this one up,
check out all her books.
She is a very favorite of ours!

For lunch Adam made his delicious, fresh guacamole!
This stuff goes quick around here!
We also had pickles and green grapes
 with our turkey sandwiches,
 and I colored the kids water green.

 The big hit of the day was the
delivery of our new water slide!
It was cool and cloudy and
had absolutely nothing to do with the holiday,
but since it took up most of our afternoon
 I had to include it!

We ended our impromptu
St. Patty's Day celebration
with lime jell-o, whipped cream,
 and green sprinkles.
 
All in all,
sure I messed up and did not get to do
the craft I had planned and
we missed our fun class at the local book store,
BUT really?  My kids did not care!
We had a great day and nobody got pinched...
Well, not too hard anyway!
https://www.pinterest.com/pin/254523816417353291/
PS. Here is the pin of the craft
I wanted to do with all the kids!
CUTE, right?
(The watermark says Sassydealz.com, but the link would not work for me)
 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

New Etsy Shop Designs

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I have been having lots of fun
 with my Etsy shop lately.
Wanna see what I have been doing?
https://www.etsy.com/shop/NextToHeaven?ref=hdr_shop_menu
I really like it when customers
suggest color combos or
 request new design ideas.
Look at all these great colors my aprons come in now!
These also remain my biggest seller...
Adorable, Affordable, and Authentic!
(hehehe)

 These tote bags are great for
 Mother's Day Out,
Sunday School,
Library Visits,
or Road Trips!
And if you are looking for
an end of the year teacher gift...
you found it!
This primary color combo is perfect
 for spring and summer!
It will also work for both girls and boys,
So BRO & SIS can match!

Ahhh, I am lovin' these colors right now!
 
And to top it all off my favorite design yet!
My Aunt and Uncle are big Texan fans
and there newest addition just happens
 to have the initials JJ!!
How cute is this?
You couldn't find this at Academy.
https://www.etsy.com/shop/NextToHeaven?ref=hdr_shop_menu
Now I will put my BOSSY PANTS on...
Come take a look at my store,
Favorite my shop,
and let me know your favorite design
by leaving me a comment!!

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Navy Master Bedroom

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 We recently got a little frisky risky in our master bedroom...
with our paint color of course.
 Now, although I have a good eye for pretty rooms,
I am no professional AND
we do not have the time or
funds to UN-DO any decorating whims!
This is where my love affair with Pinterest comes in!
 
Here are a few tips on how I use Pinterest
 for our home projects.
First, start a board... be specific.
By this I mean, do not start a "bedrooms" board
with pins for every one's bedrooms.
Instead, assign a board for each room.
2nd, be specific in what you pin.
Now I love sleigh or iron beds and
there are some beautiful shabby chic bedrooms
 that are lovely and catch my eye...
But I know we will not be getting a new bed and
the shabby chic room will not be the direction I go.
I can add these types of pins to a
 "pretty spaces" or "dream house" board.
If I fill up my board with ALL
the master bedrooms that catch my eye,
 I will never find direction and
will become way too overwhelmed!
Another tip, is to be specific on those specific pins.
Search those specific elements you have in your plan.
For us, we had a blank bay window.
I was not sure what I wanted as far as window treatments
 or even how to use this space.
So after searching "master bedroom bay window"...
 I saw a fantastic reading nook.
(we are waiting for a chair to finish this out)
And after a "window treatments for a bay window" search...
I realized that a curtain rod for bay windows
 exists and it is cheapest at Lowe's!
One thing I find that really, really helps me
use my boards to plan projects is to study my pins.
I sit back and stare at all my pins on the board.
What do they all have in common?
Aside from color, all the beds had lots of layers and textures,
a bold navy wall, and a classic feel.
At this point I made my wish list and
 started the hunt for bedding, curtains, paint, and accessories.
(I am still looking for a few more linen or burlap pillows)
My last tip, is trust your board.
When I brought home the paint samples
both my husband and my MIL had big doubts.
To be honest, pre-Pinterest I don't think I would have had the guts
 to paint anything this dark or take scissors to a curtain panel!
But that is what makes Pinterest so much fun,
all the creativity with none of the mistakes!
If you are picky about your pins,
then you will truly love your boards.
We are not completely finished with this room,
but now I am so inspired by the room
I don't even need my board to add the details in!
It is absolutely addicting to watching my boards come alive!
 
So tell me what board you have been pinning to?
Any big projects in your future?
 
 
 
 

Friday, March 6, 2015

Chocolate Salted Caramel Cake Mix Cookies

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This kiddo's Love Language is "Acts of Service"...
This means if you want to show him love and bring him joy,
just do something nice for him...
to be specific... bake for him!
to be even more specific... bake him cookies after school!
He LOVES fresh hot cookies right from the oven
 when he gets off the bus,
but that is just not realistic around here.
 
That is until I found THIS PIN!

One of my all time very favorite cookies are THESE
But not only do they take time to make,
they also will mess up your kitchen like crazy. 
So I created this easier (not exactly as amazing as) version.
And these girls can be thrown together
and baked in 20 minutes or less!
 
Ingredients:
1 18oz box of chocolate cake mix
2 eggs
1/3 C canola oil
1/2 C of Caramel Bits
1/3 C of smashed pretzels (with salt)

Just throw it all in a bowl and stir.


I do love sea salt,
but my husband prefers I skip this step.

Roll dough into golf ball-ish sized balls,
dip tops into salt,
and bake at 350' for 8-10 minutes.
 
Big tip here is to let these completely cool
before taking off the cookie sheet.
 
These are amazing and fast.
They are almost as amazing as NAP TIME!!
 

Let's go make something,

Kristy

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