family life, holiday, home, kids, Ramblings, Uncategorized

The Great Conundrum

IMG_0198

I am really struggling with a great conundrum. Are you ready for it?

I really want to decorate for Christmas, but it’s not even Thanksgiving yet.

Don’t throw stones at me! I’m not sure what it is this year. I am so ready to put up the tree. However, I am also hosting our families for Thanksgiving. Our tree will go up in our basement, which is away from where everyone will be for our Thanksgiving meal.

That’s acceptable, right?

IMG_0071

The kiddos are super excited for Christmas. Addi picked a Christmas movie when we were at the library this week. We have been watching a few Christmas movies here and there. Christmas music has been on since before Halloween.

There is currently 3 or so inches of snow blanketing the outdoors, which only adds to my strong desire to get festive inside. The snow looks so beautiful clinging to the tree branches and rooftops. It’s magical.

Pure magic.

If we find time, I think we will at least get our tree put up. Maybe.

Do you decorate before Thanksgiving, or are you a strictly after person?

Advertisements
deals and steals, holiday, home, recommendations, Uncategorized

Fall Favorites

 

Fall Favorites

\\ Hello Pumpkin Mug // blanket scarf // knit throw // slippers // nail polish //

twinkle lights // buffalo check rug // wreath // Pumpkin spice coffee // knit pillow //

socks // pumpkin //

 

I know, I know. Someone will say it’s too early for fall. Get that negativity out of here. You have to shop in advance, right? Preparedness is key. I love all things cozy in the fall. There are so many warm colors and cozy textures. I just love it all.

Today feels like the perfect day to share these favorites. My windows are open. There is a cool breeze blowing through. My kids are sitting quietly at the table doing school work. I’m drinking a cup of pumpkin spice coffee. Scott brought me a gift for the first day of school…  pumpkin spice coffee creamer. He speaks my language and I love him for it.

So, lets dive in. I love twinkle lights. I don’t really burn candles anymore because they are full of toxins. (I saw you roll your eyes.) I miss the cozy light though, so twinkle lights take their place. You can put them just about anywhere to get the cozy light. Wrap them around a wreath. Put them inside of a wicker pumpkin. Put them inside of a pretty glass vase. I also put Thieves oil or any other spice oil (clove, nutmeg, cinnamon) in the diffuser to get that wonderful scent.

Cozy slippers, socks, blankets, and pillows are also key for fall. Big chunky scarfs are a great way to layer some warmth without adding too much. Some people really struggle with blanket scarfs, so any cozy scarf will do. I also really love the buffalo check rug. You can layer your normal welcome mat over the top and it is so pretty. I want one in every room.

I also love a good fall mug and pretty nail polish. I can’t wait to have some real pumpkins decorating our house as well. We try to save those for closer to the actual season of fall though.

What are some of your favorite fall items or activities? Is it too early to even think about fall for you?

 

holiday, kids, recipes

Fourth of July Fun

2fourth-of-july-2454956_960_720

 

I love the 4th of July. I love dressing in red, white, and blue. I love doing fun crafts and themed food! I love holidays, and have passed my love on to my daughters. Addi has been planning cupcakes for what feels like months! Here is a round up of some fun things you can do or make for the 4th of July with little time to prepare!

 

Recipes

The easiest desserts are the classic bomb pops! They are so good, easy, and fun.

Festive Red, White, & Blue Bark

Firecracker Jello Snacks

Fourth of July punch

Tie-Dyed cake

Firecracker Popcorn

Berry Trifle

Cheese and Fruit Platter

 

Crafts

Patriotic Pom Pom Garland

Patriotic Ribbon Wand

Parade Wands

Slime

Paper Lanterns

Fairy Crowns

Patriotic Necklaces

 

Decorations

Painted Yard Stars

Painted Burlap Banner

Photo backdrop

Pool Noodle Firecrackers

 

Fun

scavenger hunt

Bingo

Bean Bag Toss

Squirt Gun Races

Tin Can Toss

 

 

Our local fireworks show is tonight, and we can’t wait. I hope that everyone has a SAFE and happy fourth of July. Remember that our freedom was never free.

 

baby, holiday, kids, recommendations

Holly Jolly Kids Outfits

Holly Jolly Outfits

Santa Hat Dress // polka dot santa dress // striped deer shirt and pants // knitted deer romper // You Serious Clark? // Fair Isle leggings and ruffle shirt // CC beanie // Dinosaur shirt // earflap hat // cloth diaper // Christmas socks // hoodie outfit // bandana bibs //

Hopefully there is something there for everyone. If that Santa hat dress came in my size, I’d wear it all December long.

Someone better put their babe in that YOU SERIOUS CLARK? outfit. Mine are all too big, and it’s too good.

Happy Wednesday!! We are halfway to the weekend!

deals and steals, holiday, recommendations

Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday

 

Lego sets up to 30% off

Instant Pot (I’d love to hear what you think if you have one.)

Kindle Fire 7 ONLY $29.99

Kids Kindle Fire  We are buying these headphones

Edifier Headphones (fit kids and adults)

Crazy Vitamix Sale

Nursery Items Sale

TOOLS— the easiest husband gift

Lightning deal on building discs (will run out soon)

Really great deals on Hasbro GAMES and toys

Apple Macbook

Melissa & Doug train set

Micro Mini Scooter

Cars track set

Interlocking builder blocks

 

cybermonday

 

Gathre mats 15% off and free shipping            Code: MONDAY

Free shipping on Nickel and Suede

Lily Jade on sale

Tubby Todd 15% off  SOO good for eczema

CUTEST mugs by Rachel Allene 30% off with code CYBER30

June and January

 

I’ll add more to the list throughout the day if I find more deals.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

family life, holiday, story telling

Thanksgiving Recap

Isn’t Thanksgiving food just beautiful? I love making things from scratch. To me, it is really satisfying to see it all come together.

The day before Thanksgiving, I made a giant cinnamon roll for breakfast. (100% a tube of cinnamon rolls) The girls freaked out. I achieved cool-mom status for the first time ever probably. I put frosting on it and cut it like a pie. Sprinkles had to be added, of course. They gobbled the whole thing up leaving their poor cool-mom to starve. 😉

Cut to Thanksgiving, and all of its beautiful food. I didn’t get many pictures on that day. Scott and I really tried to soak in the goodness of having family around us… plus it was bananas. I took a few pictures while I was cooking. Cranberries are a beautiful color. They were frosted by the sugar and it looked like a Christmas decoration. They were SO tart, but yummy.

img_2569

My mom came over the day before, and we made pies together. She also helped me get sweet potato casserole assembled since I had never made it by myself. Mom made a really pretty apple pie that was equally as delicious. I also baked the rolls and heated them up on Thanksgiving so the butter would melt on them. (Note: this WILL dry your rolls out, even if you cover them in foil. Bummer.)

img_2557

img_2558

img_2563

This Thanksgiving was so bittersweet. It was our first big holiday without Jim. I think we all felt the hole where someone was missing. It was very sweet to be surrounded by all of our family that was in town. I really am thankful that God brought us back for this time. Everyone signed our Thanksgiving tablecloth with what they are thankful for this year. (Except Josh. Get your butt back here.) I think I will probably cry every year that I bring it out since it is so full of memories.

 

I also have to share this. When my mom came to make pies, she also brought a little something for the big girls. She made a carseat poncho for Harper, which we love. Chloe and Addi were jealous that they couldn’t wear a poncho.. which made me laugh. My mom, being who she is, quickly whipped up two more ponchos for the big girls. They were so thrilled, and it’s really cute to see them running around in them.

img_2566

 

Little stinkers.

 

I hope that you had a really blessed Thanksgiving.

holiday, Uncategorized

Our Thanksgiving Menu

thanksgiving-2832302_960_720

Do you have your menu planned for Thanksgiving? It’s always really hard to narrow down what exactly to cook. I have had our menu set up for quite a while, because I am a planner. If you need some inspiration, here you go!

Appetizers:
Little Smokies
Gouda and White Cheddar Cranberry cheeses
Assorted crackers

Lunch:
Turkey (One smoked and one baked)
Stuffing
Green Bean Casserole
Green Beans (for those who hate casserole)
Sweet Potato Casserole
Mashed Potatoes and Turkey Gravy
Cranberry Sauce
Rolls from scratch
Fruit Salad

Dessert:
Apple Pie
Pumpkin Pie
Chocolate Silk Pie

 

Tomorrow, my mom and I are going to be baking our pies so that the ovens will be free for the rest of the goodies!

 

I would love to hear what is on your menu!

family life, holiday, Uncategorized

Stocking Stuffers- $15 and under

stocking-stuffer-collage

Camelback // Brain Quest // Band-Aid // Tubby Todd Lotion // Socks // Latte Teether // Wikki Stix // Lip Balm // Pocket Screwdriver

Sometimes I feel like stockings are the hardest to stuff. I am not a fan of the traditional candy or junk that gets put in stockings. My mom always made our stockings extra special, and I want to do the same for my girls. I tried to round up items for everyone; babies, big kids, husbands, wives. My kids are band-aid obsessed, so those almost always go into someones stocking.

I wish I had another baby because I would be buying that latte teether in a heartbeat! So much cuter than the plastic ones! Bonus: it doubles as a puzzle as baby grows!! So cute!!

How is your holiday shopping going? I usually am way on top of things, but this has been such a rollercoaster year that I feel like I am drowning in it. I have 4 gifts purchased, and have no idea what else we are going to do. But, I am so excited for Christmas!! It isn’t all about the presents anyway!! I can’t wait to bake Christmas cookies and put up our tree. Watching Christmas movies is another favorite. Hanging the stockings is always fun.

What are some of your favorite items to stuff a stocking with?

family life, holiday, kids, Ramblings, story telling, Uncategorized

Catching Up

Hello, friends! I hope that you had a wonderful Thanksgiving! We were able to spend time with my entire family for the first time in 6 years. It was crowded and chaotic, but oh so fun! I spent 12 hours in the car yesterday with Harper throwing up the entire way. All of the girls got it overnight and now all have high fevers. Please pray for them to get well.

We had a full week of “vacation”. I use that term loosely because with kids there is no such thing as vacation. It’s all work! haha! The first half of the week was pretty low-key. Tuesday, we went shopping for the last of the items needed for family photos. It basically ended up being an item for each girl. We went to Target where I drooled over Christmas decorations for as long as the girls let me. Then we went to the mall and my dad met us for lunch. (Look at the cute deer at Target!)

img_4131

We hung out at my OLD.. I mean, older..sister’s house on Wednesday. We found out just how allergic Scott is to cats. Oops. It was a lot of fun to get to spend time with her catching up on life. We were so busy talking that the only pictures I really have are of her dog. HAHA! I brought her a coffee and she bought us pizza. It was pretty great team work.

We had our Thanksgiving on Friday since my younger sister was with her husband’s side of the family on Thursday. We did a lot of prep work on Thanksgiving Day. Chloe got to make merengue with my mom for a coconut cream pie (my dad’s request) and Harper got lots of Papa snuggles. He would probably disagree on the word “lots” being used, but for a two year old he got pretty lucky. haha!

Friday morning I went out for Black Friday with my mom and older sister. We ate a super delicious breakfast and Amy made coffee for me. I pulled an all-nighter and really needed it. We had our huge and delicious meal. I may have blacked out because I don’t really remember eating, but I remember it being GOOD. After everything was cleaned up we played Watch Ya Mouth and laughed (and drooled) a ton!!

On Saturday, the family all went to a Reindeer Ranch. We ate “lunch” there. We all agreed that it was more of a snack (an expensive snack) than a true lunch. Then, we got to go on a reindeer tour and feed them! Addison was too afraid to feed them, but Chloe jumped right in. Look how beautiful they are! Harper seemed to enjoy it as well. They had a playground for the kiddos to play on also, so they all had a blast.

img_4435

We also helped my mom put up one of her Christmas trees. Once again, I’m not sure how much help our crazy crew was, but we tried. haha! Sunday was the usual- church, lunch, and re-packing all of our junk. The girls also got to open their presents from Mimi and Papa. Christmas is going to be SO fun this year!!!

img_4444

Even though our car ride was pretty rough on Monday, I feel really blessed. My grandparents are in a nursing home that is just slightly off our path home. We were able to stop and visit them. I left Harper with Scott. I honestly thought she was just car sick, but kept her out to be safe. I feel terrible that everyone was harboring this bug. Hugging my grandma and grandpa is one of the best feelings. They are two incredible people who I love so dearly.

img_4475

There is one more thing though! My best friend from High School was able to take some family pictures for us! We had initially planned on Wednesday, but it rained all day. It was a huge blessing (for us anyway) because we got them done on Friday. Our whole crew was together. So, we got our family photos, and then the rest of the family met us and we were able to take our first group shot in years. They turned out so beautifully!!! Meredith Michelle Photos has all of the credit for these beauties below:

img_4492img_4494img_4493img_4495img_4498

They are so stunning. I could just stare all day. Thank you, Lord, for a week full of blessings and for whoever invented the washing machine.

How was your Thanksgiving? Did you get any good deals over the weekend?

family life, holiday, home, kids, Ramblings, Uncategorized

This is Halloween

I cannot even believe that Halloween is just 12 days away!! Where has the time gone? October seems to be flying by, and I’m a little disappointed. October is my favorite month, but the dramatic shifts in temperature have left me feeling pretty lousy through most of it. Pull it together, Oklahoma!!

Anyway, twelve days away, and my children will not make up their minds about costumes. For months now, Addi has wanted to be an elephant and Chloe has wanted to be a bunny. Awesome. That’s not too hard other than making an elephant nose mask. Yikes. This month, however, everyone keeps changing their minds. Addison wants to be Marshall (from Paw Patrol), then a cat, then back to an elephant, well maybe elephant ears/cat face/marshall paws, just an elephant, OH WAIT I WANT TO BE A WITCH! Chloe has mostly stuck with a bunny, but then will pick other random things. They have to decide today so that I can get their costumes started and done.

Harper still can’t say what she wants to be, but LOVES puppies. Seriously, the kid is saying “woof” instead of words to other people. Scott had the really awesome idea for her to be Skye from Paw Patrol since she already has the pink glasses. (Skye wears pink goggles if you don’t know.) She is easy, and currently my favorite child. I’m just kidding.. she’s always the favorite. 😉

img_3582

I pulled out our decorations from the van today. Yes, our beat up white van is a storage area. (Just 23 days until our hopefully move-in-the-house date). The girls lost their minds. Everyone was so excited. I always let them pick where to put the pumpkins. I really don’t have a whole lot of Halloween decorations. I love decorating for Holidays, but usually end up buying fall things so they can be out for several months. Anyway, most of what I have is from Dollar Tree or the clearance section of Target post-Halloween. I always wanted to hang witch hats from the ceiling so it looked like they were floating. I finally found some for VERY cheap a couple of years ago after Halloween, and I love it.

img_3583

I wrapped cobwebs around the wooden map that is hanging up year-round. (I won this beauty in a giveaway, and it is my favorite piece of art that we own.)

img_3584

The girls love that our lamp now glows purple. What could be better?

img_3586

I also filled our giant pumpkin with candy. I saw these at Target several years ago and thought “I must have one!” It went on clearance and I bought it; immediately wondering what on earth I would do with a MASSIVE plastic pumpkin. Usually I put huge rocks inside of it so it decorates the outside. This year, we will actually get to hand out candy at home so it has a real purpose.

Am I the only one whose kids won’t decide on a costume? Do any of you parents dress up? My mom always took us out trick-or-treating and I don’t remember her dressing up, so I have just never planned on it. This is our first year actually going, and I’m out of my mind excited! Maybe we should dress up though? Let me know in the comments!