Thursday, April 8, 2010

Ultimate Blog Party 2010

Hey everybody – and if you’re new here, welcome!  I have heard so many fun things about this party that I just had to join in for myself!  Can’t wait to blog hop and meet a bunch of new bloggers this week!  If you’ve already been reading for a while, well….you’ll just learn a few new facts about me today! :)

My name is Jessica and I grew up in coastal Connecticut. I met my husband, Chris, at Cedarville University in Ohio.  I have a degree in multi-age music education, and my husband has degrees in classical guitar performance and in music composition.  He’s one class away from his master’s in composition and theory.  (I always like to know what people went to school for – sometimes it surprises you!) We got married in 2006:



Now we live in Pennsylvania near my husband’s family – I married a pastor’s son so we all attend the same church, as well.  Pennsylvania is pretty, but I miss New England every day – if you’ve ever lived there you understand that there’s nowhere else quite like it!  Thankfully my family still lives there so we take lots of trips home (and I still get to go to the beach!).

In 2008 we bought our first home, a foreclosure – it cost about the same as a mid-sized Lexus, but it’s also been the definition of a fixer-upper!  We love our home, though, and have learned SO much along the way.  We kept hearing, “New House, New Baby” and sure enough, it proved true for us!  Three months (almost to the day) of moving in, we found out I was pregnant!  Surprise! :)

I was working as an elementary music teacher, but I decided to leave at the end of the school year to be a permanent SAHM.  I loved my students, but I have NO regrets about my decision. 

2008 and 2009 821

(It’s easy to forget how puffy you were when pregnant! Yowza!)

Our son was born in July, 12 days early, via unexpected c-section.  We named him Lukas Anthony.  I am really big on name meanings – Lukas is German after my husband (he’s 100%) and the name means “Bringer of Light”, which we loved.  We call him Luke (which happens to a Bible name, so that worked out well!)  His middle name reflects my Italian heritage – it’s my grandfathers name, whom I love dearly.  Luke looked like this at first:


2008 and 2009 943

And here he is on Easter Sunday, all 20 pounds of him!


 easter weekend 141(Yes, he has tons of hair!)


We love him to pieces, although he has been refusing to sleep lately so we’re starting to love him a little less. (Kidding!) 

This is our most recent family photo, at Olive Garden over Easter weekend. 

 easter weekend 115

So, what will you find here? 

I write about a little of everything – my favorite recipes, yard sale finds, home crafting, and more.  I have a lot of interests and I blog a little bit about all of them!

(My Easy Framed Monogram Project – March 1st, 2010)

I am on a 5-year journey to replace 95% of the foods in our home with whole food options – you can read about that goal here

Since I’m also obsessed with bargain shopping (you kinda have to be when you have a lunch-money budget to work with!) I recently started a party called “Work Your Wallet Wednesday” where anyone can link up with fabulous finds or bargains for $50 or less. 

The title of this blog is “This Blessed Life”, not because I think my life is charmed or better than anyone else’s, but because by God’s grace I have been given the blessing of an abundant life in Christ.  I am a Christian, and although I don’t mention it in every post, God is definitely at the center of our family life.  Please feel free to e-mail me (blessedlifeblog {at} gmail {dot} com) if you have any questions about that! 

Hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into my life! Have a great day!


P.S.  You’re supposed to list your favorite prizes – holy cow there are a ton of good ones so here goes!  My top choice would be #3 International (blog design from The Girl Creative), because I follow her blog and I’ve looked at her portfolio and I LOVE her design ideas!  Second favorite pick would be #3 or #15 U.S./Canada, the $50 Target card from Peg’s Play or from Love Life and Family, because I am there at least once a week! Third favorite would be #16 U.S./Canada (blog design from Especially Simple).

Other favorites are 32,39,48,49 (U.S.); 8,32 (U.S./Canada); or 5 or 8 from International.  How can I choose one favorite?!  There are so many good ones to choose from!


The Girl Creative

I’m also participating in “New Friend Friday” today!


  1. i loved reading about you! your lil' man's hair is too presh! he's so handsome. my son was born 17 days early via emergency c-section! not the way i hoped for it to go, but thankful that my baby made it out alive! i love "work your wallet wednesdays!"

  2. Stopping over from New Friend Friday!
    You blog grabed me! I am origanally from PA so that was one thing, the second..its allways so nice to find other Christian sisters on here!
    I am now a new fallower :)

  3. I'm not even sure how I came across your blog today, but I'm pleased to meet you! I saw that you have a 9 month old; he's a doll! I've got a 10 month old who keeps me plenty busy, too!
    The blessings of the Lord make one rich and he adds no sorrow to it! (Pr 10:22) :-) Have a happy Friday, new friend.

  4. Visting from UBP 2010; so nice to "meet" you! Your little guy is precious and you have a lovely family! I'll be following you through Google Friend Connect. Right now I'm off to read your post on whole foods as our family is on a similar journey. Enjoy the party!

  5. Loved reading all about you. I was a teacher and decided at the end of last school year to not return and instead stay at home with my daughter born last July. I loved my students, but valued my family more and couldn't imagine paying someone else to be with my child while I was with other people's children. Anyway, enjoyed reading and looking forward to coming back.

  6. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I'm your newest follower! And I can't wait to hear more about how you work these coupons. Ha!

  7. What an adorable little man you have there! I had all 3 of my boys via brother told me I should just have a zipper installed.

    I just blogged about my boys today and how big they are now, I wish I could shrink them sometimes just to snuggle their little baby bodies and sniff their baby breath again...*sigh*!

  8. Oh, you're little boy does have a lot of hair.

    I'm visiting from UBP! Hope you can drop by my Party!!

  9. what a cute family you have your blog is cute too! glad to "meet you"! stop and check my blog out if you would like!

  10. Stopping by from UBP!! Your little guy is so darn cute! My husband is Italian and our kids were born with a ton of dark hair too!!

  11. You have such a sweet family! I'm looking foward to visiting again and getting to know you better.

  12. What a precious family! Happy Party week!

  13. love your blog Jess ... and Luke gets cuter and cuter every time I see a new pic of him!!! =)

  14. Happy UBP! You have a beautiful family! I love to decorate and entertain on a frugal budget. Love your grass project - following to see what you come up with next! No pressure, heh. Have a blessed weekend!

  15. So nice to meet you... stopping by from UBP. Oh my goodness your little guy is precious! Your family photo is adorable. I love the name of your blog... love it!

  16. Stopping by from the UBP. Great post...and yes, it is interesting to find out what people went to college for. (so many don't even work in the field you would associate with the degree) Lovely meeting you and your beautiful family. Please stop by for a visit. ~ Tanya :)

  17. Hi Jessica
    Thanks for stopping by my blog and saying hi :)
    I saw that you were from CT and now live in PA.....well guess what? I'm from PA but live in CT now - how cool is that?
    I met my hubby at Carnegie Mellon in Pittsburgh and I grew up about 40 miles south of there in a small farm town LOL.
    YOu have a lovely family and your blog is great!
    I'll be back often and hope to get to know you better.
    Have a great time with the UBP it's always alot of fun,

  18. I love that our blog names are so similar. I thought and thought and thought about the PERFECT name. :) I realized that even though there are frustrating days, I am indeed blessed. God truly has given me so much!
    I'm also from central CT...small world! We live in northern New England now, but whenever the topic of moving comes up I want to cry. I love New England!
    Anyway, I'm excited to follow your blog!

  19. Thanks for stopping by my blog yesterday!

    That little boy of yours is a cutie pie! Look at all that hair!

    I love your Wednesday meme - who couldn't use a little help with bargain shopping, especially nowadays?

    Great blog, great theme!

  20. Your little boy is such a cutie! And I love your monogram project, very creative!

    We're in PA too. So it's nice to "meet" someone from the same area!

  21. Hi Jessica,
    I am from PA and have a blessed life as well. Your little guy is so cute -- my middle daughter is expecting our first grandson this summer -- I am excited.

  22. You have a very cute blog and your little one is too cute! Happy blog party week :)

  23. You have a beautiful family! Isn't it the best thing to be a SAHM? I love it!!

  24. Hi my name is Amy and it is very nice to meet you. You have a very nice blog! I will definatly come back and check out some of your frugal finds, in our home we are always searching for more ways to save some money. Well I hope you have a blessed day and if you have time come by and say hi! Our families blog is at


  25. Hi! Just stopping in for the party! Love your blog! Hope you will stop by my blog for a visit! I love visiters! Have a great weekend!

  26. Your boy is so cute!! It's good that you are able to be a SAHM without regret! I absolutely love it...and would hate having to go back to work!!

    Stopping in from the UBP of course!! Hope to see you at 'my place'!

  27. Hey ~ I'm just stopping by from the UBP10! I grew up in FL and moved to PA a couple of year ago too! I'm looking forward to checking out your blog a little more!! Have a great party week! =)

  28. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

    I love yours and am planning on sticking around. Enjoy the rest of the party!

  29. Just catching up on my Ultimate Blog Party hopping - hope you're having a great week! Your son is totally adorable, and your blog is charming. I live in PA as well, although I came from Illinois - nowhere near the beach, unfortunately. :(

    My UBP Post

  30. My son was also born in July and was 13 days early via c section. I went into labor and he was breech. Today at 8 mos he also weighs 20 lbs. Small world!

    Just stopping by from the UBP at Five Minutes for Mom. I love your site and am subscribing to your RSS feed. I would appreciate it if you visited my blog and did the same! I'm looking forward to reading more and getting to know you better.

    The Healthy Moms

  31. Hi from a fellow Christian SAHM and former-teacher-with-no-regrets about leaving! Your son is adorable. I hope you might stop by my place (#225 on UBP), too:

  32. Hi! Stopping by from the UBP! I Hope you’re enjoying the party! Have a great weekend!

  33. Okay, they picture of you guys outside Olive Garden made me tear up... i miss home! I think we are going to need to plan a trip this summer!


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