Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Weekend Update {You Know, On A Wednesday…}

Cause that’s how I roll!  lol  I had a great weekend and since a lot of you are like me and like seeing what other people find for cheap {hey if we’re weird at least we’re weird together!} I thought I’d show a few pictures real quick. :)


On Friday my mom came over to sit with the kids while I went to Luke’s preschool for a parent-teacher conference.  She handed me a bag and said, “I couldn’t wait til your birthday!” {It’s not til December.}  Inside was this beaaaaauuuutiful pink Pyrex casserole, in great condition!  Made my day! She found it at Salvation Army. 

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Then Friday night I got to have a girls’ night out with Amber.  She’s one of my best friends and we’re both in the phase of life right now with little kids and not a lot of sleep and loooong days so we both really needed it!  We hit up Chipotle, Hobby Lobby, Trader Joe’s and Saver’s.  All the best!

The reason I wanted to head to Hobby Lobby was to finally pick out some frames for my hallway that has been b-a-r-e except for a mirror since we moved in two and a half years ago!  LAME.  But I have the hardest time finding things to hang on my wall that I like!  These frames were just what I was looking for!  They are definitely pricier than I would have paid, but my b-day is coming up…. ;)


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I can’t wait to hang them this weekend!



I also found this light plate for Livi’s room {how sweet, right?!}, a knob for my bathroom linen closet {currently knob-less, so sad} and these two clearanced brown knobs that will fit perfectly on an antique cabinet we got from Chris’ family.  So fun!

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I also got some pink paper for Livi’s room, green paper for Christmas crafts, and burlap ribbon for another craft I hope to do. 

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Ohhhhh I love that store!! I wish it was closer!!


We hit up Trader Joe’s and I wanted to show you guys these crackers.  They are my MOST FAVORITE.  They are made with rice, so they are super crunchy and ADDICTIVE.  Ohhhh I love them!  Chris *hates* when I eat them because he says the bag smells like burnt popcorn {he’s totally right} but if you love savory/bitter foods you will love these! Divine with hummus!  {And they make two different sizes.}

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Last up was Saver’s….I found a few kid items that I needed, like a sleep sack for Livi for $2.49.  I also found a great Pyrex present {for you, Linds!! lol} and one pretty dish for myself {it is soooo dangerous when you know your birthday is coming soon and you’ll be getting money!  haha}.  But this piece had the glass and that’s so hard to find, plus it matches another bowl I have already! It was $4.99 but it was worth it to me since it has the glass lid.


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I’ve also mentioned probably a hundred times once or twice how much I love children’s books, and ESPECIALLY seasonal ones.  Even better was that some of these I was going to order from the Scholastic insert, and they were waaaay cheaper at the thrift store!  Yay! :) And can I just say HOW fun it is that I can buy a whole series of books named Olivia?!  I mean seriously…can you imagine being a kid and there’s a whole series of books with your name on it?!  Love it.  And the book is actually hilarious.

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We had a great, great night and it was so much fun to shop! Oh and here’s one more picture…I stopped into Goodwill last week after a chiropractor appointment and found these two kids books for 49 cents each, plus the She and Him cd {I’ve been wanting it!} and some pink 49 cent tulle that I’ll be using for Livi’s party!  So fun! :)

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On Saturday we did a quick family photo shoot at my brother’s place.  He has a beautiful rental property and there is an old barn there that has amazing patina.  I’m not sharing “the” photo, but here’s a sneak peek of one of my favorites! 




We went to Five Guys afterward and then Target and I got some great grocery deals.


On Sunday I didn’t feel well at all {my cold had finally caught up to me} so Chris took Luke to church and I stayed home with Liv.  Having a day to stay in my jammies and nap helped me sooooo much!


And here we are on Thanksgiving Eve!  My favorite weekend of the entire year!  I got to see my sister and my brother-in-law yesterday!  I haven’t seen my sister Jill since April and Jordan hadn't even met Livi yet!  Craziness!  I’m soooooooooooooo looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, parade watching, Black Friday Goodwill shopping, and getting our tree this weekend!  Can’t wait! 


Have an amazing, blessed Thanksgiving, everyone! 

Friday, November 15, 2013

A Day in the Life: 8 Months Later

Back in March I did a “day in the life” post – at that point Luke was 3 and  potty training, and Livi was just a few weeks old.  Life was crazy chaotic but I’m glad I documented it.  I thought I’d do anther one to compare life then and now.  It’s a little easier, thank God, but, well…definitely not chaos-free. lol!


Wednesday, November 13, 2013

3:45 am: Livi’s crying.  Change her diaper in her crib, in the dark, aka trying to wrestle a wet pig while half asleep myself.  Sister likes to be on her belly AT ALL TIMES when sleeping so she is perpetually trying to flip over while I simultaneously attempt to change her.  So desperate to finish I only get one of the onesie snaps matched before I zip up her fleece pjs.  Hoping she won’t notice.  Calm her down but I notice she is deep breathing and simultaneously has the hiccups.  This is not going to end well….but I go back to bed. 


4:05: Crying again.  Ahhh, the snaps!  Maybe one of them is cold and hitting her leg?!  Go back in, fasten all three, calm her down again by rubbing her back.  She goes to sleep {I’m praying for real this time.}


4:22: Back in bed and hopefully for good…


7:30: I wake up and it’s bright light outside and I can smell coffee {bless my husband, I knew that man was worth marrying!} My kids never ever ever sleep this late anymore so for a moment I think it must be the weekend and Chris has let me sleep in.  I quickly realize it’s not the weekend, I hear Livi moaning and stumble to get her.  Luke wakes up about 2 seconds later.  Secure milk for my boy and bottle for my baby.  Eyes half asleep.  2 sips of coffee before I feed Livi on the couch.

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She finishes and I drink coffee to try to wake up. 

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Meanwhile, Livi is playing at her toy, aka THE MACHINE OF DEATH.  Sound is broken so it only plays on LOUD and the most obnoxious computer-generated songs.  But it’s good for her to practice standing on her own, and she loves it, so we keep it. 

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8:30: Breakfast for Luke…toast with butter, peanut butter, brown sugar, and cinnamon.  Smells soooo good…

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8:45: Breakfast for me…toast with butter, peanut butter, raw honey and cinnamon.   I don’t even like honey all that much but this local stuff is to die for.  Kids play while I continue to wake up. Yes, I noticed I already wrote that once.  lol

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9:45: Livi is down for 1st nap, I secure Sesame Street on Netflix for Luke, and I hurry to the bathroom for a super fast and not-at-all relaxing shower.

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10:10: Livi’s awake and crying.  Did she even sleep?!  I swear this girl is an insomniac.  I go in and see if I can calm her back down to actually nap.  She is holding her dolls, sitting up, and when I go in she stops crying and laughs at me when she sees me.  Nice. 


10:50: Feed Livi puffs, chicken chutney (lol), egg yolks, pureed fruits, then bottle after her food.  She is on day 4 of egg yolks and loving them.  So grateful every time we can add a food to the “approved” list!  I clean the kitchen while she eats the yolks and puffs.

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11:20: Kitchen and Livi are cleaned up.  I do my hair and make-up to actually look human and not scare the daylights out of the bus driver when she comes later. 

11:45: Luke out of jammies and dressed.

11:50: Livi out of jammies and dressed.  Both kids out of jammies before noon = success.  I’m basically top contender for mom of the year, in case anyone was wondering yet. 



12:00 pm: Livi starts acting super cranky.  I feel like she needs to take a nap, but technically we are on “bus alert” now – the bus comes at 12:15 but we are supposed to be ready early just in case.  I don’t want to chance missing the bus while I’m back in the room calming her down. I decide to stay by the door and try to console her so I don’t miss the bus.  A lovely 15 minutes ensues. 

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12:30: Blissssss.  Luke is on the bus, Livi has actually fallen asleep (!!) and Chris is, for the first time ever, home for lunch!  He started a new job last week that requires a lot of driving and traveling and he’s right near our house for lunch today.  Hooray! 


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Lunch is leftover hamburger vegetable soup, pulled from the freezer last night.  Crystal Paine’s recipe and we love it!  I inform Chris that if he’s home it has to be documented today and make him take a blurry photo of us. :)

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1:00: Chris stays home to work and make calls but “he’s not here.”  Time to bake!  I’ve mentioned Luke has a lot of food issues but breakfast foods (aka carbs) are safe for him.  I bake frequently so that he has something to eat.  Today I have a little bit of pumpkin left in the fridge so I am making pumpkin scones. 


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I love baking and I light my candle and turn on my Little Women soundtrack, pull out my Pyrex and get to work. 

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Scones are baking and I load and run the dishwasher {aka THE STORY OF MY LIFE}.  I pull out salmon to thaw for dinner.  Aldi’s salmon is wild-caught and amazingly priced.  I buy it all the time!


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1:55: Livi’s up and crying.  That nap definitely wasn’t as long as I was hoping for, after this morning.  Bummer.


2:15: Livi eats her puffs while I whip up a broccoli-pumpkin-applesauce combination, with some cinnamon oatmeal on the side.  It’s amazing to me that she likes it {babies are crazy!} but she scarfs it down. Another small bottle, too.


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2:45:  Livi’s finished and clean and I keep her in the seat, give her some plastic measuring cups and spoons, and put Baby Einstein on the computer for her so I can sit down for a few minutes.  I take out my Bible, Jesus Calling, my gratitude journal, and some more coffee.  I read and write in-between jumping up and down to get the spoons that she drops. 


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It occurs to me that I really don’t sit down much in a given day.  Like…less than 30 minutes total so far today.  Crazy.


3:15: Luke’s off the bus and wants milk {he gets it at wake-up, bedtime, and after school.  I think he likes looking forward to it.}  We talk about his day and I try to prevent him from squeezing his sister too hard in a hug or trying to ride her like a horse as she crawls.  The things I find myself saying aloud...


4:00: Livi’s super cranky and I want to put her in the car to take another cat-nap before bedtime.  Chris can finish up the rest of his work later, so he decides to come with us.  Another unexpected surprise!  Normally he wouldn’t be home until 5:00.  Having him there to help makes a world of difference in how much fun grocery shopping is.  :) We head to Wal-Mart {out of sheer necessity – I’m not a big fan of that store!} and Stop & Shop.

I am so grateful that scarves are in style now!  They make SAHMs look sooo much more put together than they really are.  Or at least me…I shouldn’t speak for other moms.  haha ;)

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5:30: We’re home and I’m prepping dinner {pan-fried salmon, Alexia fries, and salad}. 

We play with the kids and give them both baths before putting them to bed.  Livi goes down about 7:00 and Luke about 7:45 tonight.  I realllllly don’t want to work out, but I’m doing a Thanksgiving Fitness Challenge with some Facebook friends and so I force myself to move on the elliptical.  I am slower tonight but I stay on for 30 minutes.  I lay on the couch afterward, watching a Netflix show, while Chris finishes up work from the day and gets ready for his business trip tomorrow. 

We’re both in bed by 10.  I’M EXHAUSTED!

P.S….that night, Livi was awake at 11:30, 12:30, 1:30, and 3:30.  Deeeeelightful.  

So, that’s a day in my life! I can’t see anyone buying the rights to my life for a screenplay soon, but someday I know I’ll be glad I wrote this.  ;)


Happy weekend, y’all! We made it!!!! :)

Thursday, November 7, 2013

My Facebook Page Launch – And a Giveaway!

Hey you guys!  I *finally* got around to launching my new Facebook page for the blog – and I’m celebrating with a fall giveaway! :)

True story: I have had my Facebook Page “reserved” since March 2010.  I totally know that sounds a little crazy. ;)   I just remember thinking that blogging was becoming more and more popular,  and so I figured I’d better snatch the name just in case!  Also: I did the same with Twitter but can’t see myself using that anytime soon.  #aintnobodygottimeforthat

SO.  :) I’d LOVE it if you’d join me over there!  The reason I launched the page is so that when I link up blog posts they can easily be displayed right on the new Facebook page and not on my personal page.  Plus this way I can share Pinterest finds, favorite posts from other bloggers, awesome deals I see on the internet, etc.  I think it will be lots of fun. :)

So let’s move on to what you can win, right?! 

You probably all know by know that fall is my FAVORITE and Thanksgiving is my SUPER FAVORITE, so I decided to put together a little collection of things that would make your holiday a little more fun!  {The fact that stores go right from Halloween to Christmas music makes me want to break out in hives a little.   Thanksgiving is the poor neglected holiday – how did that happen?!}

So, I put together a little collection that will hopefully make your Thanksgiving holiday a little bit brighter:


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Salted Caramel Yankee Candle {smells soooo delish} and fun little mini notecards {these would make cute thank-yous for holiday hostess gifts or for your kids’ teachers at school.}


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Orange napkins {not gonna lie, I totally got these on clearance so there is a sticker on the back! haha} and fun orange ribbon from JoAnn fabrics


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Fun little sticky tabs from Target {for marking holiday recipes or gift catalogs!} and a “Give Thanks” banner from Michael’s


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This adorable free 5x7 printable that you saw printed out from Johnson Ferry Women’s Ministry in my fall house tour.  I DO NOT own this print – it was provided for free and I am just a grateful recipient! If you win this giveaway and would prefer not to receive this Scripture print, I will certainly do my best to find a non-religious print to substitute for you. :)


So, how do you win?! 

Basically, the more you do, the more chances you have!

First and mandatory requirement is to “Like” my new Facebook page for This Blessed Life.  If you already did that, GREAT!  You still get to enter!

If you share this post or my FB page, you get extra points (see below). 

If you answer some questions for me, you get extra points as well. 


It’s my little way of saying thanks for getting my Facebook page launched!  Giveaway starts today {Thursday} and will end on Sunday the 10th at midnight.  I’ll be back Monday morning to announce the winner!

Good luck and thank you!! :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, November 4, 2013

Fall Around Our House {2013}

I post pictures of seasonal decorating on my blog each year so that when I pull the boxes down for each holiday, I can look back and see how I decorated the year before and remember what worked and what I want to tweak. 

Every year I *think* I like it the way it is…but then I inevitably change it a little every subsequent year. :) Part of that is my tastes changing over time, and part of that is due to new things I find on clearance or at thrift stores or yard sales that I buy throughout the year and place in the attic until it’s time to bring them down again. 


So here’s how our house looks right now…
{p.s. I have NO clue why the formatting is so messed up – I’ve tried to fix it 3 times and it still won’t save my changes.  Sorry it’s a little mushed!}


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…pumpkin: thrifted…orange bowl: gift from friend…


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…foliage and bowl: thrifted; candle: gift…corn: yard sale; bucket and filler: target dollar spot…

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…acorn frame: CTS clearance; bowl and candle, gift; pods: Michael’s…
…kids’ q-tip art inspiration: Jones Design Company



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…faux leaves: thrifted; grapevine wreath: JoAnn’s…



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Loving this fun and functional chalkboard in our dining room!  Hopefully one of these days I’ll finally get the DIY details up!



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…faux berries: Michael’s…

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…fall garland: thrifted…

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free printable in thrifted frame…

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…garland and banners: DIY…

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…tray: Goodwill; plate: Target clearance; berries: A.C.Moore (old); candle: free with coupon at Hallmark (old)…

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…garland: DIY…



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…free printable in thrifted frame; bird, lantern, faux fruit: thrifted; pods: Michael’s, runner: Wal-Mart (old)


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I just love the colors and words of this free printable!  Great for the month of November.



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The wreath is a DIY Ballard knock-off…another tutorial I should have posted ages ago but just don’t have the time right now with these two crazy kids of mine!


Well, that’s our house right now!  Hope you enjoyed the little tour! I love fall and get so, so excited for it every year!  And only a few more weeks til Thanksgiving…my very favorite holiday!  Hooray! :)