31 Days Day 2: Sparkling Water

Water has always been my drink of choice.  Even as a kid that’s what I wanted.  My oldest son is the same way.  Now I’m getting a little bored.  I don’t want soft drinks, dontvwantvthr intake of sugar from sweet tea even though I love it, so I was at a loss.

Then Walking through WalMart on Monday I saw it LeCroix flavored sparkling water!!!! One episode from The Big Boo Cast mentioned LeCroix flavored sparkling water.  At the time I filed it away in the many scrap papers of my brain and it all came rushing back standing in the aisle with Thea begging to go see toys.  gasped and grabbed me a 12 pack and I’m SOLD.  Now if you don’t like soda water you probably won’t like it, but if you have the pallet for it definitely go try!  Thanks Melanie and Sophie for the share!! I like to think I carry on conversations with them instead of just being a listener to the podcast:) Yay for exciting water!

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31 Days of Life Hacks and Joy: Day 1- 75 Degrees Autumn is here!!!!

Yes, I’m a terrible blogger, but for some reason I can handle a 31 day challenge!  Last year I wrote on a serious subject that I was dealing with, BUSY BUSY BUSY!  I’m not a serious person. This year I need fun!  There are so many things I use daily that make my life easier and that I just love.  When I love something I want to share it.  For these next 31 days I’m going to share my life hacks and things I love that bring joy to me.  I’m not a planner but categories can and will be books, apps, fashion, home, exercise, beauty, weather, and oh so much more!!!

So DAY 1… FALL FALL FALL is in the air.  I’m in Arkansas and getting REAL Autumn weather is a crap shoot.  You just never know if it’s going to be 80 degrees, 30 degrees, or a beautiful 75!  October 1st has not disappointed this year.  This morning when I walked out for my 5 a.m. walk with my gals it was 59 and NO HUMIDITY!!!!  You cannot even imagine the JOY in my heart in anticipation of the gorgeous 75 degree weather we are going to have today. I put on my tshirt, jeans, and long cardigan (which I enjoy wearing oh so much in the Fall) and walked out with a smile!   Now granted the weatherman is only promising 10 days of this, but GOD is granting a long awaited gift today of coolness and beauty.

So excited to list and share 31 days of things that bring me Joy!

LET IT SNOW…

This journey to slow down our family has been pretty fantastic.  I’m really enjoying less stress and less crazy.  However, baseball season is-a-comin’ and I have 2 boys playing this year instead of one.  Continuing the slow down and keeping some of our free time will be challenging for the next few months.

What we’ve accomplished in our less busy life…
-Reading consistently at night with the kids
-Plenty of home play time for the kiddos
-Lots of home projects started and completed (chalkboard wall, rooms cleaned out, painting, creating)
-Reading books for myself
-watched movies with Ryan
-Learned a new rhythm of family
-joined PlanToEat.com and meal planned and the stress of cooking has totally changed!
-Bible Study with girlfriends
-Kept up with running (Except for these last 2 crazy winter weeks)
-Boys have had time to draw and create with Legos

I still have a lot to learn but the next step for us is more family service time outside our home.  My kids are way passed ready to do some mission projects as a family.  There are lots of people we can serve and help but more than anything my kids need a mind-set of others and not self!

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Growing in Gratefulness: Monday’s Song

“I will enter his gates with thanksgiving in my heart,
I will enter his courts with praise.
I will say this is the day that the Lord has made.
I will rejoice for he has made me glad.
He has made me glad, He has made me glad,
I will rejoice for He has made me glad.”

This song is taken from Psalm 100:4.  It’s a song I think of often when I remember my childhood.  It’s one we sang in church often – way before Praise and Worship was around!  Today my heart needs to be grateful.  I’m overwhelmed with Monday and all the lists that come with it.  I have a choice to be grateful or to be anxious.  I CHOOSE GRATEFULNESS.  I’m saying it loudly to convince myself.  God is so much bigger than my to do lists and my worries.  Be grateful today and sing some Bible Verse songs (AKA the first Praise and Worship material).

31 Days, Day 23- Accept the Help

Pride is such an ugly characteristic that gets involved in my life way too often.  I’ve had to rewire my lean into prideful independence since we’ve brought children into our lives.

For so many years I just did it myself, got it done, and pushed through when things got tough.  I added 4 human (3 kids + husband) responsibilities into my life and that complicated things.  I no longer could just do it all myself and it became hard to accept help and admit that I need help often.

Help is not a bad thing.  When life gets crazy God often sends help that I turn away because my pride is too big.

My commitment is to accept the help when offered and ask for help when I just can’t do it all myself!  Life doesn’t have to be crazy and overwhelming and sometimes it’s just good to learn from the folks that want to help!

31 Days, Day 22 – Everyone Else’s Clutter in the Closet

Now that my closet is under control and I feel less stressed I still have my kids closets to deal with.  This has been an ongoing battle.  I’m blessed with many hand-me-downs from older cousins, but it gets very overwhelming and I keep way too much.  Now I have to figure out how to minimize the kid’s clothes.  Part of the stress at the moment is that Arkansas Autumn is never consistent.  Oh today is 80 we need our shorts and you say tomorrow it will be 50 OK let me drag out the coats.  At the moment I have no solution.  I need a new system.  I guess admitting there is a  problem is my first step:)

How do I minimize the kid clothes?  Who has a good clothes system?

31 Days, Day 21 – No More Clutter in the Closet

Part of my frustration with being busy and out of control is that my house gets out of control.  There are five of us living in this space and I do the majority of the work in maintaining order.  When the house is a wreck my mind is a wreck and I over exaggerate in my mind the craziness.

This has been an obvious problem for a while but since Thea was born I have pretty much been in survival mode.  Now that all 3 kids are older they can take on more responsibilities when it comes to keeping order in the house. Now I have to work on letting go of control.  Life and issues never end (until it does:).

My first step in restoring some order to the house was to tackle my closet.  The #1 issue in our disorderly crazy house is CLOTHES.  We DO NOT need this much.  Ryan built me a great closet just after Thea was born and it’s just the right size for me to keep all my clothes for every season.  Which means I can’t be a clothes horse.  So, to help ease my craziness I have purged the closet!

This was how I decided what goes and never returns to the closet…
1. Do I have multiples of this?
2. Did I wear it the last season, if yes stay, if NO then GO
3. Is there still a maternity label on it
4. Do I always by pass this piece and move to something else
5. Does it complete an outfit or complicate it

I have never been able to consolidate my wardrobe, but when you’re tired of being out of control you’ll go to great lengths.  I now get a lot of peace when I walk into my office (where my closet is). And instead of being frustrated about what to wear it’s now pretty simple cause there’s less to muddle through.

How do you keep your closet from getting out of control?