Saturday, July 22, 2017

My Hair!

9:22 AM 0 Comments
My hair is a hot mess most of the time. I have more gray than I would like and yes I dye it. Currently it is pretty dark (my 11 year old doesn't like it and thinks it it to dark). I have been thinking of a more fun color but the kids tell me that I am to old (I am a few months from 40) but I keep thinking why not because I am still young. 

Today I have to go to a shower with my Mom so I figured I needed to do more than a pony tail for that so I started to flat iron my hair. This is the second time in a week I have done it and like before that was I actually don't remember. I was for a long time a daily flat ironer. 

I was chuckling as I flat ironed my hair because I finished one side of head and noticed what a major difference the flat iron makes. How often do you get a before and after in one picture. 

Isn't it funny how big of a difference it makes? I have actual inches added to my hair. My hair is pretty long right now and I do need a cut to. 

Completed flat iron. Amazing what a wonderful tool the flat iron can do for one's hair. I use to have very wavy hair but it has relaxed a lot as I have gotten older which makes it so much easier to work with. 

So here I am all done up with makeup. I actually am not huge makeup wearer and feel like it is pretty heavy on my face most of the time. 

I also hate how when you take a selfie, that it looks like  have ninety chins so thhat is why I don't take them that often!

Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Delightful (and Easy) Meal Planning

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Let's be honest that the thought of meal planning is not a great one. You read all of these Pinterest and blog posts about how to make it easy plus they say it is life changing. 

Guess what it is really life changing because it makes your life so much easier. I have been meal planning for a while and am always looking for good ways to do it. There are certain things I want o achieve out of meal planning and when you determine that, I think that meal planning can be delightful and easy. 

The things I like to achieve are:

1. Less grocery shopping and trying to shop biweekly and even monthly though honestly for my family biweekly works the best. I notice two weeks are about how long goods that spoil last like milk and eggs. 

2. Having a easy go to menu and rotating it on a regular basis. I guess this means it can't always be taco Tuesday (though my youngest would have it every day if I made it). I am fine if that works for you but I get burned out with meals when I have tried that but if it works for you go for it. 

3. Cheap buys and buying what's cheap. I spend a few minutes to see what is on sale each week and tailor my planning and menu to that. It would be nice to have steak every week but I only get it when it really is on sale. Pork tenderloins are great to stock up when on sale and one can stretch two to three meals in my house. My kids love pulled pork so that is always a go to. 

4. Efficiency which means, I am not all about going to multiple stores. Lots of meal planners bounce from store to store, but I guess I am lazy in the regard. If I can't get it at one store, than I just don't get it but I also adapt as well.  This is why it is always a good idea to know your store and know their advertisement. For example, I know Aldi's and I know what I can and can't get there so I may shop there one week and than do Kroger's the next time. I than get variety of things without having to store  hop. 

I love to have my calendar laid out for the month so I created a fun and easy way to fill in with my meals for the month. I also mark down the times we go out to eat. We always do Sunday morning breakfast and Pizza night on Friday.

Here is my August plan
Here is a blank calendar to print out 

I also have this fun planner insert I got from Michaels which can break it down per week as well and help me remember likes and dislikes. Plus it also has a pantry and fridge inventory list so I always know what I have on hand for planning purposes. 

I can easily stick this in my purse for when I go shopping. I also can use the cloud and one drive on my phone to pull up my at home list if needed. 

I want to have a quick and easy way to plan and get the stuff I need so that I have more time for other things like work and crafting of course lots of crafting.

Thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

The Essential Guide to a (mostly) Clean Home

12:00 AM 0 Comments

Cleaning gives me a Zen feeling. When I complete the house and look around, I have peace inside which lasts about 2 seconds until one of my kids runs through to make a mess. 

I admit, I clean early in the morning usually before they are up in the summer and after they leave for school the rest of the year. This gives me some time to have it look nice. The nice clean smell, the shine of the appliances and swept floors are HEAVEN.

I also know that I can't be crazy and decided that a a schedule was needed to keep the house clean and myself sane. 

So, I started off breaking down areas of my house and working on those each day. Something different every day and I makes the house feel clean through out the week. 

I also make sure that the kitchen is clean before bed (dishwasher loaded, counters wiped and sweep up). Beds are also made every day to. 

It feels good to wake up in the morning and not have a sink full of dishes though on occasion it doesn't happen. 

I also work at doing one to two loads of laundry per day and always run the dishwasher daily. 
Both of these help wth keeping the house pretty clean though putting dishes and laundry away really is a chore that I MAJORLY dislike but it does feel good when it is done.

So I created a fun checklist to help myself out to clean the house wth daily and weekly chores. 

I just printed it up and hang it on my fridge. I also laminated it so if I want to just check it off with a dry easer marker. The kids also have jobs and will help me with the daily stuff that needs to get done as well. 

I pretty much know the list by heart and adjust as needed. It helps to have order and it makes me feel so good when everything is in order. 

Hopefully this will inspire you to create some kinda of schedule and you can maybe find your cleaning zen. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Happy Planner = Happy Me

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 I have already admitted that I like trends in the craft world. I may not be a clothing or makeup trend person but ways to be creative, I am all about!

Planners are something I start, use for a few months and than stop using. I have had all sorts of ones but than I think well my computer, phone, and laptop are all connected with my calendar so I fall away from it. 

Though I am a sucker for cute stuff and when I saw last November the adorable MAMBI Happy Planner which was like 60 percent off, I thought why not try it. I have used that thing all the time and the reason I love it so much is because you can decorate it to your own personality. All of my stamps, scrapbook, and stickers that I own can be used to make it mine.

Here are my two planners!

I started off slow with it and just did some decorating here and there. Than I joined a few Facebook groups that are Happy Planner centric and oh my were they crazy but in the good way. 

There are sticker packs and freebies you can find on Pinterest. Phrases to motivate you and unlimited uses for washing tape which I used some but now ALL THE TIME.

I chuckled when I would see people with more than one and guess what I have two. A regular one that tracks the calendar and a mini which is my daily journal to track all the things in life. I love adding in my own pages of things like my bulletin journaling (more on that another day) as well as fun coloring pages. 

These planners reflect one perfectly and that was the one thing I always found that planners were lacking. I love tracking things in fun ways and different colors. I have the fall all laid out with the kids each having a place in the planner. I also purchased a label maker which I use for my planner and about anything I want to label. Stay clear of me unless you want it labeled!

Friends are getting in on it and my own mother has multiple ones as well. She is using stickers and loving the personalizing of it. I use it for way to remember the year that was. I track the good and the bad in them. I love that I can add pictures to it from my Kodak instant camera of our memories (see cute pic f my kiddo on my dashboard). 

I love that I finally found a planner that I have used more than a few months. It goes about every where with me and I have no shame in pulling that huge thing out to take notes, see what is going on etc. 

I love how this planner fits in how I love to craft and express myself.

Free planner Printable (for personal use only)

I created this and you can feel free to print up and use for a weekly layout. I used it a few weeks ago in one of my June layouts!

If you would lie your own Happy Planner, Amazon has great deals always and this is
 a nice starter kit! (Affiliated link)

Thanks for stopping by and feel free to leave a comment bout how you love your MAMBI planner!

Friday, July 14, 2017

Bitmoji Love

12:00 AM 0 Comments
One of my favorite things is Bitmoji, which is creating your own personal emoji. I just love how custom you can make it. I love sending people texts with my own look and I think my Bitmoji looks a lot like me. 

My Bitmoji has been everything I can make it in the app on my iPhone. I sent one to my Aunt once and she loved it so much, that she had to create her own. It looks just like her to and she will send them to me randomly as a pick me up. 

I used the app recently to make Bitmojis for the kids and myself. I figure I could use them for fun stickers for my planners. I used a scrapbook program and just downloaded the pictures I saved off the iCloud to my laptop. It was super simple but a tad time consuming to add and size them all. 

The sheets look like this:

I can print them and hand cut them out on sticker paper or load them into my Cricut to cut (I already loaded to see how it would look).

I figure this will be a fun way to add a little something extra to my planner and all sorts of things like in the kids lunches. I figure I can print a sheet up for the girl for her school planner to keep track of all her stuff. 

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Are we there yet? Things to help with a road trip

12:00 AM 0 Comments

My kids travel really well and our actually seasoned road trippers because with the cost of flying we can all get in the car, visit extra places and still some in way under than 4 airline tickets. Plus we go for extended periods so it is nice to be able to haul more stuff and have our own vehicle. 

So with all this traveling, I have found some wonderful things each and every time to make it so much easier on everyone including me because honestly if Mom is happy than everyone else is happy as well and if Mom isn't happy well we all know what that can be like ;).

Here are some of favorite tips for traveling:

1.  Have a dedicated box of entertainment like crayons, makers and things to color. My kids LOVE all that kind of stuff. 

2. Have each kid have their own car bag/backpack. These are things they want to come with and give comfort. My kids are both so different. My daughter packs it to the brim while my son just takes the basics like his favorite stuffed animals and a few books. 

3. Tablets, computers and DVD players. Honestly the tablets make it easy to be all in one. My kids didn't even bring any movies this time for the drive. They played games, and read mostly on their devices. 

4. Snacks, lots of snacks. I hate stopping and buying snacks at the gas station because every time is like 10 bucks for nothing. So we went to the dollar store and for 20 bucks got twenty different kinds of snacks. Everyone was happy to have their favs right there in a bag. My kids loved it and we will always be doing this but sunflower seeds are off the list now forever- need I say more.

5. Pack lunches because I am all about going as far as we can and stopping for greasy food isn't something I like to do for multiple days. Between the snacks and packed lunch we were good (this also includes drinks). 

6. Hard surfaces for kids. I have gotten all sorts of ones for the kids like the trays, and binders but the best yet was the $1 cookie sheet from the dollar store. It has so many uses like drawing space, lego building (yes my son for hours and hours on our trip built legos) and it is magnetic so that works as well. Best idea yet for that.

I love the Kindle for exactly that and they are a reasonably priced one to.
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7.  Charging station and enough cables for phones, tablets and computers. I created a cute pouch to store my stuff in for easy access so when a cable is needed, it was there. I also made sure to get stuff back. So far we are only missing a set of headphones (of course mine that I borrowed to someone). I will find them I am sure at some point unless they fell out somewhere which has happened. 

8. Charged phones for GPS and finding things. Without a good phone with GPS, we would be lost. I love just typing the stuff in to find plus it is a great way to update people about progress. My hubs like to use a find me app to help track our driving progress. Though it is is creepy to get texts from them welcoming us to the states as we hit them. 

9. Patience and lots of it. Things happen that are out of your control. You may turn the wrong way (I tend to do that more than I like to admit). I got turned around one time that costs us like thirty minutes. I was in tears but everyone else was laughing on our adventure. So just relax and enjoy the ride. 

10. Have comfy clothes to wear. Leggings and yoga pants are a must. Nothing with buttons or zippers because they can jab plus it is so much faster to go potty. Also wear layers because outside might be hot but with the air con, we get cold. I wear a sweater most of the time. 

11. Have pillows and blankets because without a doubt you will doze off at some point (just not while driving). I also include in my stash a eye mask to help it get dark. I also like the neck roll as well for trips. It actually gets fought over when I am not using it. 

12. Have fun with the trip. The drive can be ling and boring so find ways to change it up. Sometimes we have long family talks about the weirdest things while on our trips and other times we go for hours not talking at all. 

Monday, July 10, 2017

Road Tripping 2017

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Every year the kids and I head up to visit my parents up in Wisconsin. Weather is so much nicer there in July than Texas (think our fall weather). Low humidity and bright blue skies with highs of like 80 most days. So we hope in the car and travel up and we have now decided it is fun to stop on the way up to see America. This year we decided (okay I was ganged up honestly) to go see Branson.

The hubby had been there like 30 years ago and I have never been. I have always wanted to see it and it was about a hour really out of our way. So we headed out on Monday to start the ten hour drive to Branson. We got into Branson about 5ish because we made sandwiches in the car and stopped only a short time for potty and gas breaks.

Branson is really a gem in the middle of the Ozark's.  It is a hilly and green area with pockets of fun scattered through the area. Everything close by but traffic is busy with really only one main drag (on the our second day, we figured out side roads were much better).

Our first day night there was just dinner and listening to the never ending firework display by our motel. The next morning, we woke up to rain and though well we will make the best of it but it cleared for most of the day.

The first thing we did was something we stumbled upon, the Celebrity Car Museum. My hubby loves this kind of stuff and it was a fun museum though not cheap (though not much is cheap there).  We looked at all the fun cars around. We saw it only because Ecto-1 was sitting out front and one of the kids screamed GHOSTBUSTERS!

After the museum, we decided to go see the fish hatchery which sounded really cool but because it was federal holiday, it was closed but we still got to see the awesome Table Rock Dam which was amazing. I don't think I had seen a dam before like that and the power it creates is amazing. They also had a nice visitor center that was open that you could look ver the dam and lake. 

After of course we got some lunch (how can you beat the 5 buck lunches at DQ. Boy just had to have his ice cream. 

After we went, we were going to go to Fritz Adventure but it was crazy busy so we went go karting instead. Both kids love go karting and bumper boats as well. I think the boy won because big sister was pretty wet. 

Of course the hubby saw a huge bust of Ronnie and made us stop for a picture because why not!

The kids and hubby finally got to go to Fritz's adventure which was ropes, warp wall and lots of fun. I think they spent like here hours there and I just bummed around Branson while it rained.  After they were done, we tried some moonshine and had dinner down in Branson Landing which was an outdoor mall. We ended our night with a awesome fountain and fire display and watched fireworks not he drive back to the motel. 

We headed out early to get to Wisconsin, which we made it by 5:30 pm so just in time for the kids to jump in the pool!

Thanks for stopping by!