Thursday, January 22, 2015

Clearing Out & Letting Go

When the New Year begins, I get the urge to clean out. This urge usually happens about 3 to 4 times a year and when it comes you bet I am cleaning out whatever we don't use or need.  It usually begins with the kids toys and clothes. Next, my clothes and various items that I haven't used in a while. The Mr., he is great at cleaning out his side of the closet which leaves me lots of clothes to donate.

When all the cleaning out is complete there are multiple piles of stuff. This stuff is then put in boxes or bags to be donated or to a local consignment store.

A confession....the bags then sit...for a few days.....  And the rush of emotions come flooding in----
My thoughts go something like this:
"my babies are growing up so fast, I want to keep those cute little clothes"
"he really loved that toy a long time ago, I should keep it"
"the boys may still play with those toys again one day"
"that shirt/outfit was so cute, I should put it in a shadow box for safe keeping"
"what if those toys will be worth a lot of money one day"
"our grandchildren might like to play with those toys"

You get the idea... I could really go on and on but I won't.

Then after a few days, the bags of stuff sitting there gets to me and I have to take it away. I am a little obsessive you could say...things have a specific place and if anything is out of place it drives me crazy. So I guess once the stuff has been hiding in the bags/boxes the pile eventually gets to me and I get rid of it.

The hardest is taking the boys' items to the consignment store, I just walk in set the boxes/bags down and walk right out. I think if I stayed in there any longer I would just burst into tears.

Crazy how the mind works, isn't it?

Letting go is hard sometimes but in order for me to simplify and reduce the amount of "stuff" we have, a clean out is a must. I know that most people in general have more than they really need and the need to have more is becoming the norm, or at least it feels that way to me. I really get the urge to buy more than I really need at Target--love that store! I mean they have so many cute things! I try, I really do try and as you see from the photo above there are only a couple of bags in the front of the cart. So that my friends, was a quick and only a "needed items" shopping trip-coffee included!

I still have more cleaning out to do but I have to say, even though it was so hard to let go of all that stuff, it feels good now that it is gone.

That is the goal-to feel good,  to feel better-the clutter and extra stuff really does drag you down plus it's more to clean!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

2015-Happy New Year & Welcome Back!

I'm sure you have heard this a million times already.......What happened to 2014? It went by so fast!

In 2014, I went from a Stay-at-Home Mom to a working Mom. Well, that actually happened in 2013 but my business really picked up in 2014 and therefore this blog got pushed to the side. I miss blogging so much which leads me to one of my goals of 2015: To get back to blogging!

I still have projects that I never shared, projects I still want to accomplish and share, layout more of a schedule to stay on task with the items that I want to pursue.

I am aware that will not be easy, I mean let me be honest! -A husband, a home, two boys, a dog, a cat, working with clients, after-school activities for the boys and  add in everyday life and to-dos' and I have a large demanding schedule, just like every other Mom on the planet. As I try to organize myself at the start of this new year, I hope that maybe I can find a good medium that works for me, one that is productive and successful.

This year I decided against resolutions and look more toward goals for 2015. Goals seem to stay in my head as compared to resolutions which I usually forget or dismiss by the end of January.

GOALS for 2015:

1) To be more Productive: This is across my entire life-be more productive at home, work, blogging, personally and professionally.

2) To Live in the Moment: This year I have realized that I can become so consumed with my clients that I just "go through the motions" when I am at home with my family. I need to try to separate work from home life and while I am at home-be at home in my mind also. Doing this has gotten me pulled over for speeding,  forgetting promises I have made to the boys, forgetting after school sports activities and lots of enjoyment with my family.

3) To Travel: Every year we say we are going to go somewhere far away---we never do. It always gets pushed to the side. Sure we make local trips, beach trips and mountain trips (which we love and look forward to very much) but I think we need to travel somewhere new, maybe even somewhere that requires a passport!. So if you have any great places that you went with your kids, please do share!

4) To be more Patient: This year I have become a little more patient, I think ;) Just because the business I am in requires lots of patience and I learned very quickly that nothing works out like you plan.  I am not patient at all, I want it done and done now and done right-but that every seldom happens. So I need to just go with the flow.

5) To have more Fun & be more Spontaneous: I am a planner, I like to plan, schedule and prepare. Which can take out a lot of spur of the moment fun. However, if you follow me on Instagram, you remember that I took at quick trip this summer with the Mr. to Ohio, saw Jerry Seinfeld (which was so awesome!), and we got a puppy. The puppy wasn't really spontaneous, I had been thinking about it and the boys had been asking for one for a long while-but the breed was spontaneous. I had my eye on a different breed.  I have to admit, if it was sponateous-it was more fun!

Good Luck in 2015! Lets do this!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Boy Bathroom Organization

I don't know about you but bathrooms are the one place where it seems organization can be a daunting task. There is either not enough space or everything is in a drawer/cabinet and isn't seen and therefore forgotten about. I think everything should have a place. If it has a place, it can always be found when needed.

The vanity seems to be the place that can become the most disorganized either on top of it or the drawers become a mess. So, in an effort to better organize the vanity and to make the important items seen, this was my solution. There have been so many times at night after brushing their teeth the boys would say  "Mommy, I forgot to floss!" or "Mommy, I didn't do my mouthwash!" All because the flossers were in the drawer and the mouthwash was in the linen closet on the shelf. Now, it is seen so it is no longer forgotten about!

My search for the tray and small bowl began a while back. I originally thought that a melamine tray and cup would be best. That way if the boys accidentally knocked it off the vanity it would not shatter when it hit the tile floor. Goodness, we all know how that goes, tile aways wins! Well, I could not find the sizes I wanted in melamine and I didn't have the patience to continue looking so I went with glass. Yep, so we will see how it goes.

It is the perfect size for all the products, so cute too! I found the tray and small bowl at World Market both together were about $5. The submarine toothbrush holder is from Target, we have had it well over a year now.

The flossers are awesome and much better than traditional floss, much easier for little hands. The bowl is the perfect size for the flossers.

I picked up this hand soap at Target last week and OH MY GOSH does it smell good. It was on the end of an aisle and as I was headed to the register, I saw it and grabbed it and put in my cart. I knew if would look perfect in the boys bathroom since I still had the snowman soap dispenser and it was time for a new one with a more spring/summer look plus the colors matched the room perfectly! The great smell was a bonus! Am I the only one who sometimes buys items solely on the packaging? However, I have used products many times by this company and knew it would be a great product!

So, since I went with the glass tray, I had to come up with a way to keep it in place on the vanity. As you can see from the photo below I used those non-slip liners for drawers/shelves. You can cut them to the size you prefer. I have our pantry shelves lined with these under the can/glass goods. I cut a piece to size for under the tray and under the small bowl.
So far so good, it does make if feel more secure. No sliding at all.

And unless you get down and really eyeball it, you would never know it was there.

They are also easy to clean, just wash and let dry and put them back. So another reason the non-slip liners are a good pick for this!

Quick and easy set up, easy clean up, and easily accessible it how I like it!

Now there shouldn't be anymore excuses for not flossing!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Lemon Bars

Hope everyone had a great Easter! We did, it was so nice to spend time with family. Now, I just have to keep my hands out of the boys' Easter candy!

We had a big family lunch on Easter, my Mother In Law and I split up the menu which makes it alot less stressful if you ask me. Anyway, I made dessert. I made this Strawberry Pie and the Lemon Bars.

I got this recipe years ago from my Aunt. She used to always make these at Christmas and I loved them, then we I got older I asked for the recipe and I have been making them every year since. But, this year I didn't make them at Christmas just because I tend to over do it then so I limited the desserts. So, I figured now was a good time since I passed on these at Christmas. Plus, they are supper easy to make and yummy!

As you can see from the photo, I left out the nuts this time. I think they are good both ways so feel free to do as you like. I also tend to keep mine in the frig, they are good both ways, in or out of the frig and even better warmed in the microwave for a few seconds.

Lemon Bars

1st Layer:
1 box of lemon flavor cake mix with pudding in the mix
1 stick of butter, melted
1 egg
Mix and spread into the bottom of 9 x 13 pan

2nd Layer:
2 cups chopped nuts ( I have used pecans)

3rd Layer:
1 box of confectionery sugar
8 oz. cream cheese
2 eggs
1/2 stick of butter, melted
Mix and pour on top of nuts

Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes. Let cool then cut into squares.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014


This past weekend was 12 years.

This man has made my life what it is today. There is not a day that does by that I don't thank God for putting this man in my life.

He is funny, sexy, determined, charming, smart, caring, encouraging, loving, a great teacher, has a beautiful heart and the one that I admire. He thinks differently than I and I love it when he shows me a different perspective (sometimes), especially when it come to business or teaching me how to do something new.... I still have a lot to learn from him.

Standing at the alter 12 years ago, I would have never in my wildest dreams thought that this would be my future. I still can't image what the next 12 years will be like. He has made every minute worth it, one crazy ride! He also made me a Mom which is really awesome and seeing him with our boys just melts my heart.

I must say 12 years has gone by so fast and alot of life has happened in those 12 years just like any marriage or relationship, trips, children, new challenges, fun times, not so fun times, and lots of memories! I cannot imagine my life without him in it.

Happy Anniversary Babe!
I love you!

Photo by Tanya Furr Photography

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Coat Closet Transformation

I cannot tell you just how excited I am to FINALLY be able to show this to you! This has been one transformation that I am so glad we did and it has made a huge impact! It is now the perfect spot for coats and backpacks!

Let me start at the beginning.

You see we have 3 doors all in one area, we knew when we built that this would potentially be an issue at some point.....The door that is opened is the coat closet. See, this is NO FUN in the mornings when it is time to get your coats out and put them on while in a hurry to get the kids to school on time. Plus the kids would hang their backpacks on the door knobs so each time you walked by you would get hit in the leg by the backpacks, again NO FUN. The door directly in front leads to the garage. just doesn't work!

So I took the door off. Then propped it against the pantry door for 2 days. I took the door off to see if I could live with it being off and just to get a feel of how it would be without a door before I went in and completely got ahead of myself and transformed the closet only to realize that removing the door was a mistake. Am I the only one that over thinks my diy projects? Well, then the Mr. got in on the action. He wanted in on the fun too you see. Little did he know that I already had a plan as to what I wanted the new closet to look like. Well, he started looking online and found a few photos he liked and together we came up with a better functioning closet.

The closet looked like this:

See coats, bags, beach towels, extra towels, boxes where I stored other bags and another box for mittens/hats/gloves and a shoe shinning kit. There is a lot in here but all that space underneath was being wasted! Well, it was where the dog and cat food could be found.

I started off doing a little measuring just to make sure I got it all correctly spaced out.

Thank goodness the Mr. got involved! Together, we decided we wanted the board and batten/cottage look with a shelf on top and a bench underneath.  We purchased all of our supplies at Lowes. Came home and got busy!
First, the shelf on the top:
If you notice we changed out the shelf completely. The builder used MDF board for the shelf and it just didn't fit the look we were going for, so we took it out and replaced it with real wood. Then we added a piece of wood in front just below the shelf to hide the hanging rail. We knew we were not going to be hanging anything on it, since we were unable to remove it, we hid it.
Next we worked on the bench, we used the same measurements as our shelf to complete the bench. Just make sure your bench is sturdy, has support and that it is nailed to the studs.
Then we began on the middle area. We made sure all of our boards would be evenly spaced before we nailed them to the wall. 
Once it was all completed, we painted the closet white. The closet was big when you got in there but the green walls made it feel so dark and I knew the white would make it feel more open.
See, so much brighter!! We added hooks to finish the look.
This is the perfect spot for coats and backpacks!
Now, I had to add pretty baskets too! And pillows! You can read about my pillows here.
The baskets are for gloves, hats, etc; pet items and extra towels.
We even added a small hook on each side.
The small hooks are great for hats and dog leashes.
This project turned out great! It is so much easier to get the kids coats and backpacks and head straight out the door, no more fussing, pushing, closing the door on someone hassle!
As you can see from the close ups, we left the areas where the original door hung unfilled. I just painted over it but when we do another project soon we will fill those areas in and give that a more finished look.
How about a before and after? Yes, sure!
Thanks for stopping by!
Linking up to The Lilypad CottageLiz Marie


Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wine & Dine Wednesday

Wow! Sorry for the lack of blogging....what can I say, life gets busy. Sports, helping kids with homework, family time, new puppy and everything else that goes along with living, well it just gets busy and something has to give... Let me just give you an update on the new puppy-it takes a "village" to raise a child you know but I have to say that goes with a new family pet as well. I mean holy cow! This is exhausting! Maybe I put more pressure on myself than most people to make sure the puppy is cared for, clean, smells good, learns to use the potty outside, etc. But everyone pitches in here to help with the puppy and I am so glad they do because there is no way I could do this by myself!

As I try to get back into a regular somewhat new routine I do plan on sharing on a regular basis once again. There are things I cannot wait to blog about but first I need to wrap them up in order to do just that.

A couple of weeks ago, I shared a wine that was so great, I hoped I would never reach the bottom of the bottle....Well, this is another wine that I felt the same about!

Hello! Chocolate Shop in Chocolate Strawberry. It is, of course, a red wine combined with strawberry and chocolate. When you taste it, the chocolate flavor hits you first then the strawberry flavor hits you at the end. It is a sweet wine and small servings is how you want to serve this one.

This one was also a gift from my In-Laws. They are so great to bring me us wine when they travel.  I am sure you could probably find this online somewhere but the other day when I was at World Market they had small bottles in a basket at the cash register so if you are out and about and come across this, please pick it up and give it a try. You will be glad you did!