HAPPY THING :) Vanilla Milk...

The other day when we were out as a family in OKC, the girls were thirsty and J.J. and I needed a boost as well, so we stopped at Starbucks.  We usually get the girls regular milk there, but they were out.  So we opted for their vanilla milk (rather than chocolate, because I don't like stains!).  Whoah.  That stuff was good.  The girls were licking there lips and rubbing there tummies acting like it was the best thing they had ever tasted! ... It reminded me of something I used to drink when I couldn't sleep.  I would heat a mug a milk in the microwave, add a teaspoonful of sugar and a drop of vanilla.  So... I offered that sometime I would make them vanilla milk at home.  Let's just say they take me up on that offer as frequently as they can :)  It's become a special "tea time" of sorts... we always use the special little flowered glasses, as they call them.  It's fun to see them get all excited.  It's definitely a Happy Thing :)

In case you'd like to try it as well...
I just warm 4 cups of milk and add 6-8 Tablespoons of sugar (depending on how sweet you want it) and a teaspoon of vanilla.  Chill and serve!  Yum.


A Pretty Little Gift

I wanted to show you the goodies I whipped up for the special moms in my life the other weekend...
Enjoy :)

First off, I filled some glassine bags with pretty colored treats...

I decorated the bags with fabric scrap flags, meaningful verses, little labels, and sewed it all together with a zig-zag stitch.

I made fabric covered little envelopes... to hold simple little Mother's Day notes.

I wrapped Hershey's Nuggets with Avery address labels... which I had printed vintage floral patterns and polka dots on.

And finally, I wrapped  little boxes in vintage sewing pattern paper and vintage Montgomery Ward catalog pages... (I don't have a pic of the one in the catalog pages :(  )  to hold all the goodies!  I used plenty of double stick tape to secure the brittle paper onto the box... that worked much better than regular tape or glue. 

I liked the wrapped boxes so much, I think I'm going to have to make some for myself... they'd look great on my office shelves :)


Dates to Celebrate Printable... and Some Mid-Year Resolutions

I used to be pretty good at remembering birthdays, anniversaries, smaller holidays (like Mother's Day), writing thank-you notes, etc... but in the last few years I have really slipped.  It's very discouraging to me (especially since, that's kinda one my thing... making creative pretty things!!)!  I want to show my love and appreciation to my family and friends, but I feel like life is often so overwhelming that those things get pushed to the back and usually get forgotten.

When I was in high-school, I used to dream about one day being a stay-at-home mom :)  I remember telling Jeremy when we were dating about how I wanted have time to do those things that everyone else says they don't have time for... and I specifically mentioned sending notes and sweet gifts to friends, family, and little old ladies :) :)  ..oh, the idealism.  

Now I laugh at that, because I didn't realize how incredibly time consuming it would be just to be a mom! ... not to mention house-keeping!   But at the same time, it reminds me of where my priorities began.  And I believe they were pure.  I knew those things were important... showing love and appreciation to friends and family... and at that young age, I was trying to figure out how I could make sure I was always able to do those thing.

So I have a mid-year resolution:  The first part of my resolution is to do some weeding in my schedule.  

You see, I feel kind of like a hypocrite.  It is so important to me to put my husband and my kids first in my daily life.  They are currently my primary assignment and responsibility from God.  I believe that everything else should take a backseat to their spiritual, emotional, and physical needs.  This includes my recreation, my work ambitions, my friends, outside activities, and even church involvement.  If anything gets in the way of me fulfilling my God-given responsibilities to my husband and kids then it should not be in my life...

Sounds good.  BUT... it's really hard to live out.  EVERYTHING wants to creep in and steal my devotion to my call.... even good things like church involvement!  so hard.  So I have to admit to you, I've messed up.  I've allowed myself to be distracted from my original calling.  I've let my work (Etsy, freelance design projects, and even blogging) invade on my time with my kids.  My work load makes me grumpy and steals my best hours away from those little hearts eager for my attention.

So the first part of my resolution is to clear out my schedule... and make room for being the mom I need to be.  And I've been doing this!  I've been turning down pretty much all new freelance projects.  This is unbelievably hard for me considering I've only been building my graphic design business for the past 2  years.  God has blessed me with more business that time permits.  So now he's teaching me how to trust him every time I tell someone "no."    I fear that all that I've worked so hard at the last 2 years with be for nothing if I reject project offers, but I know God is the one who causes me to succeed or fail... not any skills I might have or how hard I work at it.

Okay, so the second part of my resolution is to get back to that place of fulfilling my original call... my God-given assignment for this stage of life. 

 I've been thinking really hard about those early dreams and ambitions for being a wife, a mom, and a home-maker.  I'm jotting down all those things that I want to focus on again: meaningful time with my husband and kids, making meals, keeping up with the house work, keeping up relationships with my family...including those cards and gifts I was talking about earlier (it took me awhile, but I eventually got back to my original point!!).... and it goes on and on to more specific things....

So... in the middle of this process, I made this printable to help me with all those important dates that I need to remember!  I thought I'd share it with you as well... maybe it will help you get back to some of those things that actually have lasting impact on others :) 

This calendar-of-sorts is for recording all those dates to celebrate... including birthdays, anniversaries, holidays that you should call or send someone something...   I'm putting it in my household binder...along with my other planner pages (blog/etsy planner, Christmas gift planner).


*As always...File and finished product for personal use only... not for resale or profit of any kind.


This too shall pass...??

Well, last week I posted about my girls... their attitudes and discipline struggles....  Well, today let me update you on my baby boy... Virgil.  He has been unique since the get go...  well, he's a boy.  enough said, right?

Ever since V was about 4 months old, he's been a bit of a struggle for me.  He was always grumpy.  Always crying, but not wanting to be cuddled.   Well, lately he's become more affectionate... although it's more in the realm of a crazy puppy that growls, slobbers, attacks, bites, and rubs its head all over you to show love.  :)  So glad that I can tell he actually loves me... just ideally wish it was expressed another way (I'm not a dog lover!).   But he smiles now.  And that's wonderful.

But now he's entered a new stage... full of new challenges.  It's nothing unheard of.  In fact, Sadie was doing the exact same things 2 years ago at this time.  But it's still exhausting and frustrating!  He's climbing on every chair, every table, opening every drawing, toilet lids, pulling out all the baby wipes... you know what I'm talking about.  oh you know.

One day a week or so ago,  I decided that instead of getting super frustrated about all the tricks he was pulling,  I was going to take pics and post them for you.  You know, for a laugh.  Yeah. right.  20 minutes into the morning, and I was like... forget. this.  So I only have a few, quite tame pictures to show you.  There are no pictures of the lotion squirted all over the bathroom floor, my diet coke spilled on the carpet, the files that got renamed because V got on the computer, the look on my face as I find him playing in an unflushed toilet...  the spilled milk and cereal all over the floor because he climbed on the breakfast table, the trash strewn all over the kitchen because I didn't remember to put the trash can on top of the high chair like I usually do.  AHHHHHH!                       ... but I love him :)

So I'm offering a sigh of understanding to any and all moms who have been there... or are there.  This too shall pass... right?   Good thing they're cute.


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