Ready For Stress-Less Homemaking?

23
Jun
2020

Yesterday, I introduced you to the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle, but there’s one thing I haven’t told you about yet…

Did you know it comes with bonuses? Lots of them? Hooray! 🙂

Not only do the bonuses make it even easier to take care of your home, your family, and yourself… but also? They’re just really fun to redeem and receive. And who doesn’t need a little boost right now?

AMAZING RESOURCES

In addition to the 51 amazing resources in this bundle, you’ll also get 9 bonuses worth $343.96 which include:

  • Printable cards, printable calendar, art prints, and a $15 shop credit from Hope Ink Emily Hope, the artist behind Hope Ink, loves creating inspirational hand-lettered art to brighten up homes and living spaces.(Value $158)
  • Chapstick, salve, and soap bar from Puro CoPuro Co is a small-batch body care company that uses high quality, safe ingredients to create their skincare products.(Value $20)
  • $15 credit to Cultivate What MattersCultivate What Matters was created to help you live more intentionally. Use your $15 credit for their Write the Word Bible Journals, PowerSheets – the ultimate intentional goal planner, goal guides, or any of their other goal-oriented products.Value $15)
  • 4 pack of microfiber makeup remover cloths from By Jillee Jillee Shop takes pride in the exceptional quality of the useful tools, accessories, and other items you’ll find throughout the shop. (Value $19.99)
  • 10 Free Audios from Around the World Stories Around the World Stories creates fun, memorable audio stories that teach children about the world’s countries and cultures while capturing their imaginations and sparking their inner explorer. Each 30-minute story also comes with a parent guide full of activity ideas, recipes, printables and discussion topics. (Value $38)

Plus, there are 4 other bonuses from companies like Musik at Home, Strawesome, Bloom Naturals, and MadeOn Skin Care!

And there’s one more thing…

If you get your bundle by the end of today, you’ll also get a special early bird bonus designed to simplify your closet and help you put outfits together! Get Your Pretty On® is offering you one of three challenges. Pick from Kickstart & Workout ($39 value), Closet Staples ($39 value), or Bust Out of the Makeup Rut ($29 value).

Get your free bonus when you grab your bundle before midnight tonight.

Here’s how all these bonuses work: You can pick and choose whichever offers you want to redeem–as many or as few as you want. For the physical bonuses, you’ll be responsible for shipping costs. Five of the physical bonuses even ship internationally!

The digital bonuses are available to anyone in the world – with no shipping costs!
Ultimate Homemaking Bundle 2020BUDGET FRIENDLY

You may be tightening up your budget right now (which is so understandable!), but the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle has so much to offer you.

The value of the bonuses is over ten times the cost of the bundle, and when you add in the Get Your Pretty On® bonus, plus the 51 resources, it’s so much easier to discover strategies to help you take care of your family AND yourself–and that’s something we could all use right now amiright?

Check out all the bonuses and resources included in the new Ultimate Homemaking Bundle right here 

Last week I asked about the areas that those in my community needed help with.  It was meal planning, home keeping and finding time for you. This bundle is perfect!

I am looking forward to using the recipes from Garden Harvest Recipes: A Plant to Plate Cookbook (eBook) by Holly Bertone which has a value of $7.99.  Guys….. it’s all about living a healthy lifestyle and has recipes!!!  And then you also get the Uncomplicated Kitchen: 3 Step System for Simpler Weeknight Cooking (eCourse) by Ruthy Kirwin valued at $64.00.  WOW!!  Right there, with just those two things you have gotten more value than what you paid for the bundle, $29.97.   It’s a proven 3-step system that will help you streamline your weeknight kitchen, and free up your time making dinner in the evenings.  Can you say happy mama?!!!

Get on over to grab your bundle today, it runs til Friday – but get it today to snag your early bird bonus!!

Ultimate Homemaking Bundle 2020

P.S. Don’t miss your early bird bonus: buy before midnight tonight!

5 Simple Ways to Connect as a Family

21
May
2020

Summer is here…we are busting down the door to sunshine and sprinklers, right??!! However, this spring has left me a bit “disconnected” even when I have been so “connected” to my family. Can you relate?

We’ve been in close quarters for weeks, and honestly, it’s been getting on my nerves!! So I decided to be a bit more creative on finding things that can break up the monotony. As with anything, changing things up is a good thing.

I hope these ideas spark some connection in your home!

Reading Out Loud

I admit, I really despise reading out loud, but I realize it is a great way to build connection. It’s also a fun way to share a story together as a family, which can then be brought into further discussion. It expands the mind, brings on creativity, and allows everyone to experience something together.

I just ordered these Oregon Trail Books that were highly recommended by a friend of mine. My son is ten, the same as her son, and he has not been able to put them down. I am looking forward to reading them as a family. I can remember in fourth grade doing a big Oregon Trail report; I even made paper look old by soaking it in coffee grounds and warming in the oven to dry. Maybe we will do a fun project like that while reading these books.

Here is a great printable that contains some other books that have been family favorites…grab yours here!

Games

Whether you like healthy competition or not, family game time is a great way to connect. Make it afternoon or evening, it doesn’t matter, and provide a few fun snacks too. We have been especially fond of these gluten-free pretzels as of late. I have enjoyed playing enough Candyland, Go Fish, and Old Maid in my time, and now  have graduated to games that require a bit more concentration. Some of our family favorites are Sequence, BananaGrams (which we take with us when we eat out), Sorry, Uno, Yahtzee, and Exploding Kittens (which I have yet to play, the name…I just cannot get beyond the name…but my family loves it!).

Have you added a new game to your collection? We’ve had some of the best laughs over games we’ve played. They just break things up in a good way and have a way of making connection and memories.

Hike

Getting outside on a hike. It’s the best ever. When I say, HIKE, maybe that mean a walk around your neighborhood, or perhaps you live near a hiking trail or natural wooded area you can take advantage of. It doesn’t have to be a big formal activity, but getting out in nature is truly a way to connect and get some much needed exercise.

We are blessed with a ton a walking trails and opportunities to get outside where we live. We are also near some national parks, and I cannot wait until they are open again in our area. So many great opportunities to see wildlife, nature, and some great waterfalls. I just grabbed my ten-year-old a new pair of hiking shoes and he literally begs me to plan a hike and get outdoors!

Cooking

What mom doesn’t need help in the kitchen? Well, if you are like me, I tend to just prefer to “get things done” rather than use opportunity for a life lesson, but I am getting better!

We have been making almond milk together. I will share my easy recipe soon, but he loves squeezing the nut bag!! How about cutting veggies and fruit? My-ten-year old is all about using the knife. Two years ago we began using  Green Chef, and it literally has changed my game in the kitchen. I am much more relaxed and, honestly, fun to be around and will often have my son in the kitchen to help, and my husband. Honestly, my husband loves to cook the Green Chef meals. The recipes are all super easy, done within 35 minutes, and here is the best…ALL the ingredients are included for the recipe, except for salt, pepper, and cooking oil, generally.

It truly does make cooking a joy. We have been using the plant-based plan lately, but alternate with the gluten-free plan as well. It really does help our evening routine, and we have fun together in the kitchen.

Mad Libs

Ever since I was a kid, and that was a long time ago, Mad Libs has been so much fun. Great for car rides, sitting waiting for an appointment, a day at the beach, or sitting around on a lazy afternoon. You will get a big belly laugh for sure!

This Best of Mad Libs version is great, with 125 fillable pages of fun. We would collect Mad Libs and toss them in a small plastic tub similar to this and keep some easy activities in our car (when we were out and about more!), and Mad Libs is perfect for adding to that bin. Try tossing in some playing cards, like these fun unicorn cards, and you are all set.

Mad Libs will help your child learn the difference of nouns, verbs, and adjectives—all while making up a hilarious story that you end up reading out loud. The reading is truly the best part.

Do you have some fun family favorites for connecting? I would love to hear them.

Simple Steps to a New Rhythm

15
Apr
2020

How are you doing? This new “normal” is quite strange, and if I am honest, my emotions have taken a big downward spiral on many occasions. Finding a rhythm for me and our new days at home has been critical.

We mamas really are the thermostat for our homes, so what can we do to help ourselves be the best version each and every day? I have been examining this for myself.

Yesterday I had a complete meltdown with homeschooling, not feeling valued in what I was doing, and I had not created the space for me to have some much needed self-care. Today, I chose differently and I wanted to share a few tips that I know are making a huge difference in my day.

It all starts the night before

If you have been doing this mom gig long, you know this is a common theme in many tips for having a great day. You truly must look at your day’s activities and the schedule the night before. I had forgotten this amazing habit. Now, after I have cleaned up dinner, I pull up the calendar for the next day. Since I am still running two businesses from home, I have a full calendar in the midst of homeschooling our ten-year-old too. So it’s critical I know what is happening so I can be prepared. If I have a 9 a.m. Zoom call, I will need to shift my morning tasks around, and it’s best to prepare everyone in the family the night before.

I also decide what will be for lunch and dinner for the following day. With us home now for both meals, having a plan in place is such a relief. If I need to prepare or take anything out from the freezer, I can easily do this with plenty of time. Having dinner all set is huge!! Do you weekly meal plan? Here are some tips to get you started and a free copy of my fun weekly meal plan printable.

Same time each morning

This one may not be what you want to hear, but it is proven to be true and so helpful. Getting up at the same time each morning helps your body find a rhythm that sets itself up for success. Set your intention the night before with what time you will start your day. For me, my perfect window for giving me some quiet time, exercise, and focus is 5:45 a.m. If I get up at that time, I am golden for feeling good and ready to go by 7:45, when I am needed to be ready with my game face on.

Set your intention

This is KEY!! Hear me now…when you decide the night before what time you will get up, you have a 99% higher chance of making that happen. I completely feel my subconscious senses that as well. How many times have  you decided a time to set your alarm and then you wake up two minutes prior to that alarm? It happens to me often!!! When my mind is set to proceed with a said action, I am better prepared and equipped in making it happen.

Good stuff in

What does your mind need to get started each morning in a positive way? We are all different, but I can tell you, it is NOT social media! I have made a conscious effort to NOT go to Facebook or Instagram until I have fed my mind with God’s word and filled it with truth for my day. I cannot tell you how I have booby-trapped myself when I roll out of bed and open Facebook. It’s a rabbit hole I do not want to start my day traversing.

Instead, I open my YouVersion bible app, read the verse for the day, and fall into one of the several reading plans I have chosen for myself. I also daily post a bible verse in the Confident Mom Facebook page to help you fill your mind with good stuff.

Build in rest

It may seem really backwards to say to “build in rest” since it seems that we all have less to do, but honestly, the emotional toll our bodies are carrying is taxing us. We need to be sure to have some downtime in our day. What does rest look like to you? To your kids? To your partner? Figure out what nourishes you and the members of your family. Is it reading books, doing a puzzle, taking a walk, sitting with a cup of tea, or watching a movie? Have that be part of your day for sure; you will be so relieved!

Look forward to FUN

As an enneagram one, fun is not really part of my vocabulary! I used to be way more fun, but something has shifted for me in the past ten years. However, with a ten-year-old in the house who desires fun, I need to up my game. Finding silly things to spend time on is important to him. Allowing him to see me laugh and be a goofball is one way I can lighten the mood, especially now that things are so different and so unsettling.

Today, we are headed out to create some big-time sidewalk chalk art with some friends. Not really what I desire, but I know that it will be fun for him and a great bonding experience too. So I challenge you, find some fun and scatter it through your days!

The Lord Is My Refuge

24
Mar
2020

In the past few weeks, my heart has been aware of those of us who need to be reminded of how present God is. Yes, even in the midst of things that seem almost unreal. As we learn to navigate this season, with “unplanned homeschooling,” “social distancing,” and “families in close quarters,” it can become almost too much to bear.

It is a time to be drawing near to the Lord, instead of drawing near to the news media. All they do is share some info and then rehash it over and over initiating fear that is thrown at us multiple times a day.

I listened to a sermon a few weeks ago where the pastor told us to read Psalm 91 each morning and each evening. The promise and protection God has for us in that Psalm is what you will want to resonate on. That and only that. If you watch the news and listen to all the opinions, you want to be sure to look at it through God’s eyes. Every SINGLE day!

We want to dwell on God’s word.

As I was reading this piece of scripture with my ten-year-old, a friend shared with me a version she had where she was actually able to fill in her own name, or the name of her family. It was brilliant. I took that as a jumping off point to create a free printable that you can use in your home, now—and fill in your name, your children’s names, or your family last name. There could be nothing better than a personalized reading of Psalm 91 to marinate and dwell on.

I encourage you to grab this free download.

Spend some time during dinner tonight and fill in the blanks. Perhaps you even make more than one copy and have your kids write their name in all the blanks and keep a personal copy for them to read before bed.

Taking time to read this truth…GOD’S words which are full of power will help ease your spirit.

God is not a God of fear. He wants you to be in His word, walking closely with him. It’s time to share that with our kids in a dramatic way.

Do you have a favorite portion of Psalm 91?

For this current season, my favorite is Psalm 91:5-6

You will not fear the terror of night,
    nor the arrow that flies by day,
 nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness,
    nor the plague that destroys at midday.

Go now to download your FREE personalized Psalm 91 printable and have it handy.  You can either download and save to your desktop, then open Adobe and use your computer to type the fillable blanks or you can just print and handwrite in the blanks.  Either way, it will empower you with truth.

Remember, the Lord is my Refuge. He is here to protect you and give you peace.

Ways to Help a Child Grieve the Loss of a Pet

29
Jan
2020


Oh, friends…it’s been a rough few days. Let me share…

We were getting ready for small group night (more on that soon!) when our ten-year-old came downstairs in a panicked, anxious state. His hamster “Bean” wasn’t moving and didn’t look good. Obviously not the best time with 20 people arriving at our house, but sure enough, Bean had died in the last hour.

I was shocked. This sweet hamster had only been in our family for about seven weeks. How on earth could this be? That was my thought, but nevertheless, we had to carry on. Lots of hugs from me and thank goodness my husband could take the tiniest member of the family to the garage till after small group.

I have never been so grateful to have a house full of young friends for our son, because they were so helpful in creating a distraction for a few hours. After everyone left later that evening, the real work began.

Emotions

Our family has lost a few pets over the years and it’s never easy. But this was the first loss for our son, Super J, so it was a big deal. If we’re lucky, everyone in the family gets a chance to say goodbye. The amount of emotions that can come to the surface with the death of a pet utterly astounds me. For example…

  • Guilt. Did I cause this? Could I have done more?
  • Sadness and loss. Was this a best friend? Just a pet? If I’m being real, maybe it was a blessing that they’re not with us?
  • Grief. Why does it hurt so much? Does it bring back memories from other loss, maybe a parent?

Include Your Child in All Stages

Sitting with our son as he was in tears later that night, he had lost his best friend; something I didn’t even realize but can completely understand. These furry, lovable friends work their way into our hearts. Their absence can create a giant sucking hole. I wanted to analyze why “Bean” had died, but I knew that wasn’t going to help right now. It was time to be a mom and love on my boy who was hurting intensely.

Teaching Moments

Even though this process stinks, God can create some awesome teaching moments for us to try and be prepared for.

Will we see our pets in heaven? I’m certainly not a bible scholar, but God created animals and talks about them being in his future kingdom. For me personally, I prefer to be honest and say I am not entirely sure.

Can we pray for our pets? Absolutely. We can pray to our Heavenly Father about anything, at any time. We can also pray for our broken heart, for that sadness we feel.

Will I ever stop feeling like this? Yes you will, honey. You are going to have ups and downs in life. I think covering grief by just blatantly saying you will “get over it” is not conducive to the experience. You need to just sit with them in the process, and they will naturally discover that with time, your heart heals.

What’s going to happen to my pet’s body? Always dread that question. In my opinion, just be honest. It’s just a body. Depending on your child’s age and questions, you may need to explain more.

Will that happen to you Mommy? Always the hardest question. Everyone is going to die, but again, another chance to talk God and Jesus and where are we going after our earthly bodies give out.

Ceremony

I believe it’s important to memorialize the major events in our life, a big exclamation point or a period, to help us move forward. If you know your pet is getting close to the end, NOW is the time to have a party for them. Remember the good times and treat that pet like a king or queen for a day. We did this for our dog Riley before he was rehomed. He didn’t die, but he was going to be gone from our lives, so we needed to grieve that as well.

Some of our pets have been cremated. Some buried. But we always have a ceremony to remember their lives and the good times we shared with them. Maybe a poem or special words are appropriate. Maybe a note or picture inside a box. Maybe a walk to spread their ashes. Whatever it is, try to have your child be as involved as they want to be as this won’t be their only loss. We’re modeling behavior for them.

Some families get some type of memorial figure to place where the pet is buried or where you can remember a cremated pet. Our spot will soon have a bench that we will fondly remember “Bean” as we sit and have a wonderful view of the ocean.

Some have an ornament made or mark dedicated to their pet, so each Christmas they can be reminded of that special pet. Whatever you decide, I do believe it’s important to choose something.

Be Open With Feelings

Providing space for our children to talk is important. I have found that out of nowhere conversations have drifted over to talk about “Bean” and how much he is missed. I discovered this handy book and wanted to share it with you as a resource when you need it.

“I Miss My Pet: A workbook for children about pet loss” by Katie Nurmi. This workbook lets children work through the loss of a pet by teaching the child that their feelings are important and respected. They will also learn that respect for all living creatures is an important aspect of growing up.

An Acrobat Reader is needed to view and print this book. Your browser probably already is set up to accommodate this PDF file, but if not, you can download it by clicking here.

Will we get another hamster?

I suspect so. Maybe a different rodent this time. For now though, we’ll allow some time to feel and some time to heal. No reason to be in a rush. Sometimes that is the problem, we are in too much of a hurry to allow our grief to go full circle. Not this time. No, not this time.