Monday, July 29, 2019

Here comes August!

I love the end of the month and the beginning of a new one!

I get so much joy from looking over the last month and seeing what I have accomplished and thinking about the things I could have done better and then planning the month ahead.

For us, August is a great big ? .

Tomorrow, we find out if/when my mother-in-law will have surgery to correct her carotid stenosis. We are still trying to decide if it makes good financial sense to go on vacation in September. So, I am budgeting and planning and trying to keep us on a strict budget so we can go to South Dakota.

Planner Spread of the Week

1. Plan Sanibel Island trip
2. Cut Stickers
3. Facebook Posts for August 12-18 and August 19-25 *
4. Costco Trip...major trip *
5. Pick up necklace at Kay Jewelers *
6. Plan Ben's Birthday Party *
7. Travel Tips posts for October

Motivation for the Week

A major focus for me this month (and the rest of the year) is going to be getting myself back on track. I need to eat in a way that makes me feel good, I need to move as much as possible to get myself fit...I just want to conquer this lifelong issue. I can do this.

What are your goals this week?

Friday, July 26, 2019

Five on Friday: Travel Essentials

We travel a lot. Mostly to my parents house, but we are always packing I'd like to think I'm a bit of an expert. I can pack a suitcase for a weekend away in 20 minutes and my clothes aren't wrinkled when I arrive. So there are a few favorite things I want to share to help you with your packing.

1. Bago Toiletry Kit
I love this toiletry kit. I can fit almost everything I need to get ready inside of it except my hair stuff.

2. Makeup Kit
I use this daily and usually travel with it. If I'm strapped for space, I will condense into a smaller bag. But this bag is great to protect your makeup if you have higher end makeup that is prone to breaking while traveling.

3. Jewelry Roll
I don't use this as often anymore because I don't wear as much jewelry (#homemakerlife), but when I am going on longer vacations like cruises I use this to organize my necklaces, bracelets and earrings. They are well protected and don't get tangled.

4. Suitcase
After years of using American Tourister exclusively, I bought my husband an Ebags Motherlode 21" Carry-on Wheeled Duffel and we BOTH love it. It is a suitcase that you can customize and keep organized. We can fit everything he needs in this suitcase for a week long business trip. When we are taking a week long vacation, we each use our carry-on and then bring a third for toiletries and shoes.

5. Netflix/Amazon Prime
I love the download feature they both have so I can download several hours worth of TV or Movies to watch on the plane or in the car. In the past year, this has become an essential for travel for me. I struggle to read on a plane for a variety of reasons lately, but this feature is amazing!

What are your travel essentials

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

Fajita Feast Menu

Over the weekend, we had family over for fajitas and the meal was delicious, so I wanted to share it with you!

Chicken Fajitas with green bell peppers and onions
Mexican Rice
Refried Beans
Homemade Salsa
Shredded Cheddar Cheese
Shredded Lettuce
Sour Cream
Tortilla Chips

We marinated the chicken (with this recipe) and then grilled it.

I sauteed the peppers and onions and added Old El Paso fajita seasoning. I used Rice-a-Roni Mexican rice and El Prefida refried beans.

We have a huge amount of tomatoes, so I made homemade salsa with this recipe.

It was easy and delicious and you should make it at home too!

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Tending Tuesday

I am rocking this monthly task thing. My weekly tasks on the other hand...yeah.

I think for August, I need to really think about how to more effectively use my daily and weekly tasks. I was feeling like my weekly to dos were weak this month anyway and they have turned out to be very weak.

I need to focus on crocheting and reading when I'm not busy instead of scrolling on the Social.

As you saw in yesterday's post, I am planning on finishing up the monthly tasks and purging the living room this week.

Ok, so here is my tending list that is looking good!

How is your July going? What goals are you struggling with? Which goals are you rocking?

Monday, July 22, 2019

It's a New Week!

Well, last week did not go as planned, but I'm giving myself some grace. I spent a lot of time cuddling Ellie, cleaning up her messes (she has a UTI) and relaxing. Actually, I was glancing at my tending list and it wasn't as bad of a week as it felt, but if I had just stepped it up a tiny bit...

Grace. Right. Grace. Ok, it's a new week.

Planner Spread of the Week

This Week's Goals

1. Work on Ellie's new trick
2. Travel Tips with Jennie September posts
3. Catch up on ironing*
4. Purge the living room
5. Schedule outings with Kathy and Linda*
6. Facebook posts August 5-11*
7. Plan Sanibel Island
8. Design Stickers

As usual, the starred items are the non-negotiable goals, but I really want to get the others done too! It is totally possible this week too. There is not a ton going on except the bathroom remodel and a lunch that I forgot to add to my planner.

Motivational Quote of the Week

I have a feeling this will probably be the quote of the week for the next few weeks...

This week, things seem pretty calm, but when things seem pretty calm, those are the weeks that usually end in chaos. And next week, we find out if and when my mother-in-law needs surgery that will require her to recuperate at our house.


So, I wrote this post this morning and then took a nap because I couldn't sleep through the night and ended up awake at 3 AM and napping from 6:30-7:15. Since then, I have finished my ironing, most of the laundry and scheduled my outing with Kathy.

Friday, July 19, 2019

Five on Friday: Favorite Books So far in 2019

I love reading and I try to not share every single book I read on here, but you can follow me on Goodreads to see what I've been reading if that interests you.

But, my five favorite books so far this year are...

1. Unenchanted series by Chanda Hahn
This series is a complete departure from my normal reading preference. It is a series about a descendant of the Brothers Grimm. It is a YA series and I am totally enthralled with it. I will say that it would be AMAZING if it were fleshed out a bunch. If you were looking for something fun and easy to read this summer, this is the series to read.

2. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
This is another series, though I have only read Book 1 so far and another departure from my normal reading preferences. It was recommended by Sherri from Young Love House Has A Podcast and it is about a young girl who goes to live in the fairy world. These are long books, but Book 1 at least is a page turner.

3. A Whole New World by Liz Braswell
Another departure...May was weird, ok. It is a YA book based on Disney's Aladdin, but there is a twist...Jafar gets the lamp at the Cave of Wonders.

4. Outer Order Inner Calm by Gretchen Rubin
Back to my normal authors...this a book of tips for people looking to create order in their surroundings.

5. The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown
This is the first Brene Brown book I have read and I loved it. I can't wait to read more. Also, if you haven't watched her Netflix should.

What were your favorite books so far this year?

Friday, July 12, 2019

Five on Friday: Summer Traditions

I don't love being outside. I am uncomfortable with all the bugs and the humidity and the've seen me. I'm pale.

But I do like to do some stuff in the summer!

Here are 5 of our summer traditions...

1. Gardening.
My husband is the gardener...but I do love that we have a garden.

2. Grilling
Again, my husband is the griller...but he is an amazing cook, so I love to send him outside to prepare our dinner.

3. Sitting outside with an adult beverage
There is nothing better than sitting outside on a nice summer evening with an adult beverage...this summer I'm obsessed with the Smirnoff Ice canned drinks.

4. Sonic
We find ourselves at Sonic so much more in the summer...slushes, lemonades and ice cream...its the perfect time to swing by Sonic

5. Big Brother
What...did you think I was going to say hiking? Big Brother is a big summer tradition for us...mostly because there is nothing much else to watch on TV.

What are your summer traditions?

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Tending Tuesday

Ok. I basically made zero progress. It is actually laughable how little progress I made. I did pretty good at tracking food and did a bit of my 30 day fitness challenge. I stared at my crochet from across the room.

But, I'm going to give myself some grace. And make a plan.

My bathroom remodel starts Tuesday or Wednesday, which means that my life will revolve around daily trips to Lowe's and being here to let my workers in.

Other than that, I need to finish planning the South Dakota Trip, run a Facebook Ad, work on Ellie's training, track food, do my 30 day fitness challenge, crochet and read. Whew. And we are leaving on a trip on Friday.

I can do it though.

Did you struggle with the start of your July? Are you rocking it? Share below!

Monday, July 8, 2019

Hopefully this week goes better...

Last week was rough. I always underestimate how much my mother-in-law exhausts me. We joke she is an "energy vampire" because she always seems to get more energized when we are around and we end up falling asleep at like 6:00 after a day at her house.

Anyway...this is a new week.

Monday Motivation

"Lord, Prepare me for what I am praying for."

I believe I used this earlier this summer, but it is very pressing on my mind. With the adoption "waiting" in full force, I need to work on being prepared to be a parent. It's still really surreal to think of myself as a parent in a real way. For years I have shut down that dream and held it down with everything I have and now....its so much more of a possibility and my brain and my heart are at war with each other.

One is always happy...the other is always cautious. And it switches. It's really a crazy thing. One part of myself is always holding back to try to protect myself. So praying for preparation is probably the only thing that will turn this around.

Planner Spread of the Week

I left Tuesday and Wednesday mostly blank because my bathroom remodel is starting one of those days and I want to mark it, so I will fill that in when I know the plan. Later this week, we are going to Maumee Bay State Park Lodge for a family reunion!

Goals for the Week

* Facebook posts for the weeks of July 8-14, July 15-21 and July 22-28*
* August Blog posts for Travel Tips with Jennie
* Work on Ellie's trick
* Read 2 books
* Finish planning our South Dakota trip
* Plan that shopping trip with Kathy*
* Create a photo book
* Bake and decorate Abby's birthday cake**
* Run a Facebook ad**
* Order Tile**
* Pick up Vanity and Necklace**

You might notice that A LOT of those goals are leftover from last week. They really, really must happen this week.

How did your week go last week? What is your biggest goal of this week?

Friday, July 5, 2019

Five on Friday: Grilled Favorites

I love to send Chris outside to cook during the summer. I hate turning the oven on and standing over a hot stove, so I want to share a few of my favorite grilled meals.

1. Roasted Corn Orzo Chicken Salad
I did a post about this a few weeks ago and it is literally my new favorite meal. I have to cook a few things in the house, but the main parts of the meal are grilled.

2. Frozen Pizza
This is the absolute best way to cook frozen pizza. It changes the flavor and makes it taste like a pizza from a wood fired pizza oven.

3. Chicken and Grilled Veggies
I know this is a simple, go-to meal for most people, but it is one of my favorites. You can marinate it in Italian dressing or BBQ sauce to change it up every night.

4. Salmon
I love plain, grilled salmon. Don't put stuff on my salmon. Maybe salt.

5. Summer favorites
Burgers, Sausage, Hot Dogs...toss some corn on the cob on the grill as well to round out your dinner.

What is your favorite grilled meal? Share below!

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Tending Tuesdays: Powersheets Check In

We finished our Home Study! I have the approved home study in my possession and I just feel like dancing!

Ok, but how else did I do?

I made a lot of progress and checked some stuff off the list, but I didn't go great in any other arena.


Carol's landscaping will be done Monday. I am on the contractors schedule. I can't find a newborn first aid class and I'm going to Target with Kathy next week.


I baked twice, kept up with Facebook and my blogs. I did ZERO work on the YouTube channel I want to launch.


I did not do well going dairy free. Crocheting was hit or miss. Reading always happens. And this month, getting up early was rough for this "lark" because I was sleeping poorly.

I would give myself a passing grade for the month...barely passing, but passing.

How did your June end?

Here is a little peek at my July tending list...

I have so many fun things on this list, I think I will do ok. I am most looking forward to taking the newborn care class...which goal are you most looking forward to tackling this month?

Monday, July 1, 2019

A New Start-Happy July

Happy July!

I’ve been writing here for over a year now and, while I love sharing, I want to share better. I want to make it more genuine and more useful. I love being a housewife, but I think that as a modern housewife, I can learn from other housewives and maybe I can share my successes and struggles in a way that is valuable to the greater housewife community.

Today, that starts.

I don’t want to make promises about what each day will hold and I don’t want to make promises that there will be a post every single day, even though that is my goal. But I do want to make a practice of sharing a lot of things about how I get through the day, week and month. So I will be sharing my planners, my meal plans, grocery hauls, motivational quotes, my renewed health goal and so much more.

So, here we go….

Monday’s Motivation

“You have spent enough time at war with yourself.”

I can definitely relate to this. It makes me think of all of the negative things I think about myself and my world. I’m generally a pretty happy person, but that does not make me immune to negative self-talk. And I imagine that, like me, your negative self-talk has a familiar rhythm. Every time I allow myself to get negative, I think about the same things…my weight and mistakes I have made.

Brene Brown said “Talk to yourself like you would to someone you love.”  If I love myself, I need to stop the negative way to speak to myself about my weight and my mistakes. I need to own them and put them away.

Do you engage in negative self-talk? How do you get out of that spiral?

This Week’s Goals

Create and schedule posts for July 8-14 and July 15-21. *
Work on a new trick with Ellie
Read 2 books
Order Bathroom Flooring and Tile *
Sign up for Baptism Class
Start 30 Day Fitness Challenge *
Create blog posts for Travel Tips with Jennie for August
Work on South Dakota Plans
Schedule shopping day with Kathy
Plan Ben’s Birthday Party *
Have a good long weekend with Chris *

That is a lot. Especially with a holiday and Chris being home for 5 straight days between the holiday and working from home.

A couple of the goals are really fun! A few of them will only take 10 minutes. A couple of them are easy, but will take a significant amount of time. And one or two of them are just plain hard. The ones with the * are non-negotiables…they must happen this week.

When you are making your goals for the week, do you try to give yourself a mix of easy and hard goals?

Planner Time-Before the week starts

How are you celebrating the 4th of July? Do you have annual traditions or do you just go with the flow?

Happy July Friends!