Have You Hugged the Sun Lately?

Have You Hugged the Sun Lately?

Oh my stars the weather here has been amazing!  I literally just go stand outside a few times a day and hold my arms out like the sun might actually give me a hug.  I don’t worry about what the neighbors will think as the drive past me standing in my driveway like a sun worshipper; they think we’re weird anyway.  I stretch my arms out and close my eyes to just soak in the perfection, because I know that in a New York minute it will all be over and I’ll be sweltering for the next 5 months.

Spring is my favorite.  When you step out the front door the day just greets you with cheerful excitement.  Sunshine!  Birds!  Flowers!!  And I’m not even an overly cheerful person, so it must be amazing for really happy people.

The change in weather means it’s time to switch the clothes around.  I went through my closet and moved the cold weather clothes to the top where they won’t be easy to access.  And the light, breathy clothing has taken up residence in the prime spot….right in front of me when I walk in to choose an outfit.  There’s no reason for me to need the heavier items now.  I get hot when it’s 60° outside.  I won’t need a sweater again until at least November.

While my clothing needs are taken care of, I do need to find myself a new pair of sunglasses.  My current pair is about 8 years old and showing signs of wear and tear.  Actually, I have been searching for a new pair for the past couple of years.  I am too picky about this, especially since I change everything else so frequently your head would spin.  I switch purses at least every week, I like to wear different shoes each day, I try new hairstyles, new jewelry, I even got a new wedding band that I’ve been wearing for the past year just because I like a change….but my sunglasses I’ve been wearing since 2007.  I don’t even understand myself sometimes.

I don’t want a cheap pair because they slip down and really aren’t pretty.  I want pretty.  But I also refuse to pay $300 for a pair of sunglasses.  I mean, can that be right?  Of course, if you divide up the average amount of time I will likely wear them that’s actually only $3.16/month.  Hey, I like that math!

It will be a while before I have time to go sunglasses shopping again.  We stay pretty busy in the spring.  This coming weekend we have several weddings to attend, so we will be driving around from town to town for three days.  It just occurred to me yesterday that I don’t have a wedding gift for any of these couples.  I looked at their registries and nothing popped out at me so I guess it’s the old cash gift.  People like cash….just go get yourself what you want.  I may toss in a bottle of a favorite essential oil for my own enjoyment, maybe lavender or Stress Away.  In fact, if you’re looking for a great gift idea for me, that’s pretty much what I’d want, a bottle of Young Living essential oil and some cash.  There, now I’ve talked myself into the greatest wedding gift I can think of.

I read somewhere that a popular wedding gift is a KitchenAid Stand Mixer.  Say What?!  Who spends that much money on a wedding gifts?  Probably the same people buying $300 sunglasses.  I’m more of a $25 in a money shaped envelope with a funny joke in it kind of person.

I’ll toss in a sunny day hug for good measure.

Have a great weekend!

Take a Smile

Take a Smile

(I am an Invisalign MAB member and one of my sons is receiving complimentary treatment but all opinions completely my own!)

I thought I’d give you an update on the boys and their Invisalign treatment.  We are over halfway through with Noah and 6 months in with our younger son Adam.  We absolutely love the whole process.

 

There were a few kinks in the beginning, like with anything new, that we had to work out.  We needed a place to put the aligners during meals, so I made little buckets for them.  Those buckets have been great for organizing the trays and cases too.

We also found that they were forgetting to change their aligners each week, so to help them we added it to our family Cozi calendar.  This calendar app allows the whole family to see what’s happening in all of our lives.  I added an alarm to go off for each boy on the day they need to change and it goes off on all of our phones.  Every Thursday morning at 9:00 a bunch of us shout, “Adam!!  Did you change your INVISALIGN?!?!”  No forgetting it now.  LOL!

I’ve also shared a few other tips for helping your teens with their treatment HERE.

Since we only have to go to the ortho every 10 weeks, it’s been a great way for us to have time together to run errands, maybe see a movie, talk and just have down time.  Our lives are all so busy that I have set aside appointment days as Mom/son time.

Just last week a friend asked me if we still like Invisalign.  No question about it….yes! While Noah is a part of my MAB membership, Adam is just a normal ol’ user.  We plan to use it again with the last two boys also.

If you’ve been wondering if your child is able to use it, why not find a doctor near you and get a free consultation?  It doesn’t cost anything to go talk to them and see what they think.  There’s a great Doctor Locator on their website.

 

Be sure to check out my 10 Reasons to Use Invisalign!

Again, I am an Invisalign MAB member and one of my sons is receiving complimentary treatment.  My opinions are completely my own and I only work with companies whose products I believe in.  Click HERE to read the full disclosure statement.

Have You Finished Your Shopping Yet?

Have You Finished Your Shopping Yet?

The race is on to get Christmas shopping finished up in time to actually enjoy the festivities.  I am down to a few gifts in my Amazon cart…OK 26.  Yes, I have 26 items sitting there while I decide if I want to buy them.  I know I don’t want ALL of them, so I keep sifting through and culling more until I have that perfect stocking for each person.

Last night I sorted through what I already have for my stocking gifts once again, evaluating and making lists of what I need to finish up.  With so many stockings to fill, I have to keep it organized.  I have 5 large elfa mesh baskets in my closet designated for stockings.  These baskets are intended to be used as drawers, but I just set them on the shelf and they are perfect.  I labeled them last week while my friend Becky was here.  I used chalkboard tags from my etsy shop and Chalk Ink markers to put the names on the baskets using wire.  It’s 2 people per basket and I toss the stocking items into the baskets as I buy them.

That makes it easier to keep up with, but I still have to look through it all repeatedly and keep a list on my phone of who I still need a few things for.  I can’t seem to hold that info in my brain anymore.

As I was I looking through it all again (which means using the step ladder to pull each basket out to see what’s in there) I think I can officially say that I am down to needing just a few small things.

Which leads me back to my Amazon list.  That’s the way to go…..no parking lots to drive around in circles looking for a spot to park or inside the store to wait for the world’s slowest cashier, wondering if you should change lines, but you never do, you just stand there.

Yesterday I went into Walmart to pick up a few groceries.  I am a big fan of the self-checkout, no matter how much I am buying.  I like to bag the items myself and watch the prices carefully.  But I was buying gift cards and I wasn’t sure if you could do those in the self-checkout, so I begrudgingly went to a cashier to pay for my things.  It was like torture.  She was slow and careless and uninterested in her job.  I watched her try to scan one of the gift cards over and over and it wasn’t working.  If I am ever captured and someone wants to extract valuable information from me, all they will have to do is threaten to make me go through the checkout at Walmart and I will spill everything I know.

In order to avoid ever doing it again, I thought I would ask the checker if I could buy gift cards in the self-checkout, you know, ‘cuz silly me thought she would know the answer.  But when I asked she literally froze and just stared at me.  No response, no blinking, just staring.  It was like a comedy routine complete with a raspy voiced customer in line behind me yelling, “Hurry up already!”

I couldn’t help but giggle, which really made the scene complete.  I’m laughing, she’s staring blankly and the woman in line behind me is pounding on the conveyer belt telling us to move faster.  The checker finally mumbled something unintelligible and I didn’t press her to clarify.  I just made a metal note to get my gift cards somewhere else.  I will drive to Siberia next time if that is what is necessary to avoid that episode again.  And you can’t drive to Siberia.  At least not from Texas.

I think I will just go ahead and order my last few items from Amazon and be done with it.  There’s really no need to drag this out any longer.  If I get any more crazy ideas to give gift cards I can just give the person money instead because basically a gift card takes money you can spend anywhere and turns it into money you can only spend in one place.

Then I will be finished, although I always have that feeling that I am missing something.  Inevitably, no matter how hard I try, I bring all of the stocking stuff out on Christmas Eve to discover there’s at least one child who has next to nothing and I send James to the grocery store to get whatever he can find.  This is how, many years ago, we ended up giving one of the boys a plastic, fur covered cat that had some kind of battery operated breathing mechanism and when you petted it, its stomach moved up and down like it was taking long, deep breaths.  It was the weirdest thing you ever saw and in a bizarre twist became that child’s favorite Christmas gift of all time.

Thankfully, since we  are only doing stockings for the kids this year, I don’t have to wrap anything.  But if I did I would follow my friend Sara’s tips because she is the gift wrap BOSS!  I will be adding big bows to a few things that don’t quite fit in the stockings (Shhhhh!!!  Do not tell James because that is against the “stocking rules”), but that’s it when it comes to wrapping for me.  2015 will go down as the year I didn’t throw my back out trying to wrap the gifts.

So, how’s your week looking?  Are you finished with your Christmas shopping?  I’d love to hear about you and what you do the last few days before Christmas.  Hop over to Facebook and join in the conversation!

Have a festive week!

 

Sometimes I Fall Asleep at Target?

Sometimes I Fall Asleep at Target?

Last weekend my friend Becky from Organizing Made Fun came for a visit.  I just LOVE getting to see friends who are like-minded and we can have great conversations and challenge each other.  When I say we are like-minded, I don’t mean we agree on everything.  I mean we agree that the Bible is our guide for life and we can have fruitful conversations that will encourage us both to seek God and not the world.

There’s too much of that these days…. people seeking the world.  Man, oh man, it’s like the planet has shifted on its axis and we all got shook crazy.  I mean, the bashing and hating and being SO willing to criticize other people (almost always without the benefit of hearing their side of a situation) is pure cuckoo.

I can’t even watch the news.  It’s just glorified gossip and slander.

But now it’s Christmas time, so there’s a teeny reprise from the ugliness.  Wouldn’t it be awesome if we could be this nice all year ’round?  Although here in Texas it’s just too hot in the summer to be nice.  The cooler temps help.  A lot.

I am wrapping up my shopping this week and I will be so, so glad to have that finished.  In the past I shop all year for sales and I am finished before Thanksgiving.  But this year I did ZIP-NADA and now I am paying for it.  Literally.  The sales are OK, but when you’re forced to get it now and you’re too tired to go digging for a better deal, it’ll cost ya.

I was so tired yesterday that I fell asleep in a rocking chair in the baby section of Target.  I sat down in a very cozy seat for a sec to look over my list.  With this many stockings to fill, I have a hard time shopping for everyone at once, so I have to divide it into groups of 2 people and just think about those when I walk around.  After I’ve found what I can for them, I go back to my list and head all around the store again with a couple of others in mind.  In between rounds I check and see what I need next.  It’s a complicated and lengthy, but effective system.

In Target there are some very comfy chairs for, I assume, new moms since they’re where they sell diapers and car seats.  These chairs are so snuggly that I like to go sit there and check my phone.  So yesterday I laid my head back for a sec and wham…. next thing I knew I snorted and jerked awake.  It was probably only a few seconds, but long enough for me to have what felt like a sweet dream about Chris Hemsworth.

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Speaking of Chris, his new movie coming out about a whale attacking him and him getting lost at sea, etc.  Yeah, I have no desire to see that.  Chris is just too pretty to be killed by a whale.

When I woke up in Target I decided to stand up before someone noticed me sleeping and stole my purse or worse…. took a video of me snoring.  Can’t you see it being shared all around by the haters?  I’ll just end the suspense and tell you upfront, it’s not pretty.

Tomorrow begins the task of me taking the kids out to get their Christmas shopping done.  This is the dreaded portion of the season.  They have better taste than their wallets allow and I am constantly tempted to offer to pay for some of their purchases, which my husband is not a fan of.  I know, I know.  They should stick to their budget and no one really cares what the kids buy them and it is a better lesson for them to get what they can afford than me jumping in and giving them money.  But they’re so adorable with those puppy dog eyes trying to find the perfect thing for their big sister.  I can’t stand it.

Our level of activity right now is much more than I like and certainly more than my sleep patterns prefer.  I’m up really early most mornings with errands to run and out every night to church events, parties or get-togethers.  I think I will be home 2 out of the next 9 evenings.

No wonder I am falling asleep at the store.  When else am I gonna get any rest?!

Have a festive week!

Home from Vacation and Straight to Thanksgiving

Home from Vacation and Straight to Thanksgiving

I should be starting this morning with enthusiasm.  I have grocery shopping and Bible study, answering emails and getting the house ready for Thanksgiving all to do this morning.  But instead I am drinking hot tea in my jammies and considering a 10AM nap.

Our family was on vacation last week and now I am so worn out from all of the running around and eating and keeping up with active boys that I need a break from my break.

We went to Disney World.  It was wonderful and magical, but I got so tired that by the time we pulled in the driveway on Saturday night at 10:00 I wasn’t sure if I could make the walk from the van to the house.  Yesterday I stayed in bed until noon while watching trash TV.  After that I dragged myself to my recliner and stared at the walls, not even trying to get anything done.  I slept almost the entire day and I still don’t feel caught up on rest.

I’d like to stay in my post-Disney stupor today too, but life won’t let me.  We are having a houseful of people here for Thanksgiving, which is such a wonderful blessing!  Since I love my friends, I can’t just lie around wishing the holiday elves would bake the pies and find room in the fridge for all this food.  I have to actually get up.

This morning while I was unpacking my suitcase and putting away the vacation memories, I decided not to put my hair supplies away just yet.  You see, I got a little obsessed with doing fun things with my hair for Disney.  I created a different style for each themed park and it was so much fun that I am thinking of doing some more things with my hair for the holidays.  Maybe a Christmas tree or some kind of fountain.

Here are the styles I did last week.  I got so much interest in them on social media that I will do individual tutorials for them over the next few weeks.  I just need time to recover first.

Right now I have a week filled with baking and shopping and cleaning and hopefully getting some rest before I have to get up at 4:00 on Black Friday to take my teens shopping.  In preparation for Thanksgiving Day, I made a Pin board with some great tips, games and recipes.  This will help me when I get to the store and forget what I was planning to cook.  If you have a great Thanksgiving recipe, I hope you’ll share it with us over on Facebook! I need all the help I can get.

We will be moving all of the furniture out of our living room to make space for a few more tables on Thanksgiving.  I am not sure where the sofa is going to go, I may be crawling over it for the next 4 days.  Hopefully I can still get a few naps in while we get ready for our guests to arrive!

Happy Thanksgiving week my friends!

 

It’s Really All About the Shoes

It’s Really All About the Shoes

It’s the time of year when I have to check the weather app before getting dressed every morning.  It might be 50° it might b0 90°, who knows?!  You can’t put away your sandals and lightweight tops because even though it’s too cold to wear them today, you might need them tomorrow.

Every October I celebrate the season changing by wearing my red boots every day. It’s a fin challenge to make that work and now that it’s over, I am enjoying my other shoes again.  While I don’t wear Louis Vuitton, I do love a pretty shoe.  Truth is, even if I could afford $1,000 for a pair of shoes I wouldn’t wear them.  I have foot issues.

I have Plantar Fasciitis and bunions and yes, I realize this makes me sound like an old lady.  I remember my grandmother complaining about the corns on her feet.  Now this is me.  I may as well get myself a giant sedan and start driving 10 miles per hour through town.

Anyway, I love shoes.  I spend my spare time searching high and low for some I can wear that are prettier than Crocs or Birkenstocks.  I do own both, but you have to admit they are purely functional.  The Birks keep my feet healthy so I wear them around the house, but when I go out I require cuteness.

I have talked about my Otz shoes before because they have a trendy, earthy look like Toms, but they have footbed support.  In fact, I like them so much that they made it onto my Holiday Gift Guide for Women.  I am not sure why they haven’t become more popular, but I get constant compliments on mine and they are so easy on my feet that I wore them to Disney and Universal Studios without any problems.

Loving these little summer dresses!

Interestingly, my red boots are also comfy for my feet as long as I don’t do too much walking in them.  For general running errands or going out with my friends they are just fine.  When my feet are not hurting, I can be more relaxed with my shoe choices, but I can’t ever wear shoes with no arch support, as in flats.  That eliminates about 93% of the shoes out there.  I see this as a good thing.  It makes shopping a lot easier.

I can wear wedges occasionally.  I have several pair and I wear them anytime I can.  These slate ones are my new fives. I found them at a thrift store, never been worn, in my size, for $20.  SCORE!

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They are Dansko and if they were new they’d cost $150, so this was a steal!  They are surprisingly comfy and I also own a brown pair of Dansko Boots that I adore! (but did not get such a great deal on)

I’m looking forward to winter shoe weather because I love changing it up and even though it’s cool now, I did wear a pair of sandals earlier this week… my toes were a little chilly.  But it was totally worth it.

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I am into loose and easy clothes these days. Sadly, I have gained back some of my weight that I lost, but I am still determined and working on it.  Life, as you know, gets in the way of our goals sometimes, but I am not giving up.  You’ve got to just keep looking forward!

So as the weather cools down I am playing with my shoes and layers and mixing and matching.  I am definitely an experimenter with my clothes and I have passed that love along to my girls who always look adorable!  Well, really my whole family is pretty snappy lookin’.

Family at church

Here’s to cooler weather and new shoes!  I’ve got both my sandals and my sweaters ready, just in case.

Have a great weekend.

 

Holiday Gift Guide for Men

Holiday Gift Guide for Men

This post contains affiliate links.

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Let’s face it…. guys are HARD to buy for.  With 5 sons and a husband on my list, I always appreciate some ideas for them.  So I made this list for you of things that we actually own and the guys love.  Here are 20 things that I would buy for my guys if we didn’t already have them!

Fashion —

  1. Suspenders – these are in style for the vintage loving guy.  My 16 year old son wears them every day and it’s a good look!
  2. Wood Watch – this made it to both my men’s and women’s list.  We love our watches from Jord!IMG_6054
  3. Plaid Shirt – plaid is in this year and your guy would look trendy in his favorite color mix.  I got ours at Target.
  4. Nerd Glasses – Not everyone likes the empty frames that kids are wearing these days, but I think they’re super cute and my trendy boys like wearing them.
  5. Bowtie – I got my boys this exact set last Christmas and put one in each stocking.  They wear them all the time.
Travel —
     6.  Toiletry Bag – My guys love having these.  They use them to keep their personal products in even at home.
     7.  Napwrap – This thing is so cool!  It holds your head, your arms, whatever you need to be able to sleep or relax while traveling.
     8.  Bose Noise Cancelling Headphones – These are a splurge that I got when I started traveling a lot and let me tell you… they are amazing!  They block out plane noise, kids crying, whatever and you can relax with music, audiobooks or just plain quiet.
     9.  External Battery – Several of us own these and I don’t know what we did without them.  It doesn’t matter what kind of phone you have, this will charge it.
10. Lael Bag – This bag is made by a company who uses the profits to provide meals for the orphaned and homeless worldwide.  We love ours and get lots of compliments in it.

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Business —
     11. Command Cord Clips – Command makes some great products and these cord clips are no exception.  They keep your cords tucked away without damaging walls or furniture.  They’d make a great stocking stuffer!
     12.  BookBook phone case – My husband LOVES his wallet phone case (and I have one too that I am crazy about!)
     13.  Do Over by Jon Acuff – I read this book last spring when it came out and loved it.  For the man who wants to improve his work life this book is for him!
     14.  Back Scratcher – My husband has this exact back scratcher and head massager in his office and uses it a lot.  I’m thinking of getting one for myself.
     15. Audible.com – If your guy drives or flies a lot he might love some audiobooks.  I listen to them constantly and there are so many great business books and Biblical encouragement books worth listening to!
Health —
     16. Shutran – This is an essential oil blend that is formulated especially for men.  My son loves it.
17. NingXia Nitro – This is another Young Living product that help clear the mind and enhance mental fitness.  What man doesn’t need that?!  It would make a great stocking stuffer!

     18. Dollar Shave Club Membership – Every month your man could get a fresh quality razor delivered to the door.
     19. Insulated Stainless Steel Bottle – This is my personal favorite bottle.  It holds a lot, fits in a cup holder, is easy to flip open and closed and keeps your drink cold (or hot).
     20. Lock Laces My guys just don’t care for tying their shoes, so these Lock Laces are perfect for them!  They go into your regular shoes and they lock instead of needing to be tied.
Well, I hope this list helps you with some ideas for the guys in your life!  Be sure to also check out my Holiday Gift Guide for Women!
Holiday Gift Guide for Women

Holiday Gift Guide for Women

This post contains affiliate links.

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While the ladies on your gift list are easier to buy for than the men, we still need some fresh ideas.  So I thought I’d share with you some things that are favorites around our house.  These are all products that we own and love!

Fashion —

1. OTZ Shoes – These are my number one favorite shoe right now and I own several colors.  They have the trendy look of Toms with a foot bed that offers support.  I wore them all over Disney and Universal Studios and my feet never hurt!
2. Wooden Watch – This watch is on both my men’s and women’s gift list because we absolutely love ours!

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3. Plaid Scarf – Help her stay with the trend of plaid this season.  My girls and I love the ones they have at Target right now.
4. Stamped Stacking Ring – I love stacking my rings and having words on them that inspire me.  The 2 rings I have say “abundance” and “valor”.  I was gonna get my kids’ names, but I can’t wear that many rings at once.
5. Rocksbox Subscription – I joined Rocksbox a few months ago and it’s wonderful!  They send me 3 new pieces of jewelry each month then I just send them back (I can keep it if I decide to buy it which I did with one of the necklaces they sent me).  Use my code “penningtonpointxoxo” when you join!

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6. Plaid blanket – OK, so I have bought a few too many things at Target lately.  In addition to the scarf I got a fall colored throw that updated my living room.
7. Marquee Letter – My friend Heidi Swapp created a line at Michael’s of great letters that you can customize to your décor.  I painted mine to look like the old metal letters.

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8. Bluetooth Speakers – I added a Bluetooth speaker to my kitchen when I remodeled it so we can play music while we are cooking and cleaning.
9. Instagram Book – If your friend is into Instagram, what about giving her a book of some of her best pictures that she can keep?  There’s a app called Chatbooks.com that can make it for you easy peasy.
10. Anything from Painted Fox Treasures – These items are unique and in every price range!  I own several of their things, but this Live Work Create bag is one of my favorites!  I get a ton of compliments when I use it.

Personal —

11.Mama Needs a Do-Over – I can’t make a gift list without adding my book to it…. the gals in your life will love it!

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12. Selfie Stick – It’s the gift everyone needs, but you can’t take it to Disneyworld.
13.Handbag Light – This little gadget has helped me in a lip balm emergency many times.  It’s in the bottom of your purse or tote and when you put your hand near it lights up and helps you see.  Yep, gadget gifts are fun!
14. Yearly Planner – My friend Celia at The Printed Planner makes the best planners and I use mine every day.  It helps me keep up with my business, my kids, my prayers, my fitness…. your gift recipient will love it!
15. Wireless Earbuds – I use these every day on my morning walk.  The wired Earbuds would pull so I got myself a pair of wireless and now it’s so much easier.

Health —

16. Progessence Plus & Yang Ylang – These 2 essential oil products are my best suggestion for women…. they help support all things “girl.”
17. The Premium Starter Kit – Help your friend get started supporting her family’s health and wellness with this amazing kit that has 11 basic oils and a diffuser!

18. Everyday Grain-Free Baking by Kelly Smith – My good friend Kelly wrote this great book and it’s a favorite of our family’s!
19. Chilly Pad  – My friend Sara told me about these and I love mine!  It stays cool for hours and perfect for flea markets, exercising, any day in the summer, etc.
20. NingXia Red – Treat your friend to this dream start to her day.  It comes in a gorgeous bottle and she will feel loved!

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That’s it!  I hope you got some fun ideas!  Be sure to also check out my Holiday Gift Guide for Men!

Come on Over to Facebook to continue the conversation!

A Little Building Up and a Little Tearing Down

A Little Building Up and a Little Tearing Down

The weekend was a frenzy of…well…nothing.  I have been continuing to catch up on rest and just hang out with m’kids.  I barely did anything meaningful and it was the best weekend I can remember in a long time.

On Friday I took one of my girls shopping.  Her wardrobe had some gaps and I had been hoping for some time to spend with her to catch up on her life.  It seems like they grow up and get all busy and doing their own thing and occasionally Mom wants a whole day to hear about their plans and dreams.  It’s one of my favorite ways to build our relationship, just spending a whole day together.  So we shopped all day and found some really cute stuff for her to wear.

I also like to see what the new trends are so we hit lots of shops and she tried on tons of different outfits to see what looked best on her.  It was exciting to see all of the little dresses in the stores.  If you’re looking for a knee length dress for the summer….go get it now.  They’re everywhere!

While we were out we went to see a movie called, “Do You Believe?”  We knew nothing about it, so we took a chance and I have to say….it was pretty good.  It’s a Christian film and we both really liked the storylines and it had some really famous people in it, which was fun.  I like seeing famous people.  I don’t know why.  I’m a sucker for it.  If you get the chance….go see the movie.

On Saturday my boys and I spent the morning tearing down some cabinets in the kitchen.  It wasn’t an enormous job, and the boys really enjoyed aggressively ripping down the moldings and hitting things with hammers.  It’s funny to see their individualness come out in these projects.  One boy would be very tidy about how he took care of the wood scraps he was pulling off while another literally didn’t even notice what he did with the pieces after he ripped them down.  One of them loved just going after it with full force and another liked the detail work….carefully pulling out nails that got left behind and cleaning up the 2″ layer of dust on the tops of the cabinets.

Tell me honestly, do you frequently dust the very top of your kitchen cabinets?  If you say yes, then you will go into my housekeeper hall of fame.

After we finished the demolition and cleaned up our mess, I sat and stared, again, at what was left.  I am challenged to find a creative way to get the look I want without spending much money.  I know I can get close.  But I have to wait on the inspiration to hit me.  It doesn’t always happen as quickly as I want.  Which might become an issue since all of the dishes that used to live in those cabinets are now sitting on my kitchen island.  I have a very limited tolerance for construction messes.

Today I am going to return the paint I originally bought and try a different kind (I can return it because I bought a pre-mixed color).  I found a shop nearby that sells a new brand of paint that I want to try.  So let’s all cross our fingers and a few toes that I like the new paint.  It’s a small company, but their YouTube videos look impressive so I am gonna go for it.  I’ll let you know!

After we get all of the grime scrubbed off of the old cabinets and the dust cleaned up, which we are working on this week, we will start painting.  Some of the older kids are going to help me for a small fee.  I don’t mind paying for this kind of work.  It’s getting my kitchen freshly painted AND I get to spend more time with them while we work.  If it costs me a little moola, it’s totally worth it.

Have a great week!

Staring at My Kitchen Walls

Staring at My Kitchen Walls

It’s been a while since I blogged because I’ve been busy coughing and running a fever.  Don’t be jealous.  It hasn’t been as pleasant as it sounds.

The bug the kids had last week, I got, and was basically in bed for a week.  I don’t remember ever being so sick and it’s a slow recovery.  The cough is kind of hanging on and I get tired easily, but the worst is behind me.

Today I am taking my four younger boys out for some much needed fresh air and exercise.  Last week all of the older kids were gone to a film festival and I was sick, so the four yung’uns were left pretty much to themselves which basically means lots of wii and eating nachos.  After an early ortho appointment we will do what every red-blooded American boy wants to do on his first day out of the house in week…. see Cinderella and eat froyo.

And we’ll definitely blast some music in the van and rock ’til we drop.  Maybe some show tunes….let the good times roll.

I do have a few reflections on being sick and in bed for a week.  There’s always something good to find no matter what you’re going through.  First, I got my entire DVR cleaned off and watched every show I ever recorded, including The Wizard of Oz, which I don’t remember recording.  But I watched it anyway.

Second, I am pretty sure I caught up on all of the rest & relaxation that I have missed for the past couple of years.  I can check that off my to-do list.

Third, we don’t have to figure out if we are going to take a spring break this year.  That was decided for us.  No school for a week.  Bam.  Done.

In other news, my kitchen makeover got pushed back a few weeks since we have been sick.  Also, in rethinking the project, I feel like I need to drastically reduce the budget for it.  So I have been sitting on the bench in the kitchen and staring at the walls.  I did buy the paint already, but I am undecided as to how to proceed because I originally planned some new cabinets but they’re not in my new budget.  The puzzle I am trying to solve is how to get a well done look for basically, well, no money.

It is kind of my favorite problem to have because it forces me to come up with some of my best ideas by being restricted with a tight budget.  The summer before last I made a great towel holder in the boys’ bathroom out of scraps and I would never have come up with it if I had been able to just go buy something.

great towel bar made with scraps!

I built this cabinet last year that solved three problems in my bathroom for very little money….

A great bathroom cabinet that solves three problems!

While I stare at my kitchen and watch a princess movie with 4 superhero fans, I hope you have a great day.

See ya!