Tuesday, January 28, 2014

What I Love About Blogging..

Want to know what I love about blogging? My blog loves me. It doesn't matter if I have a single follower, or person who cares what I have to say, my blog is always there for me to write when I am ready. I have been gone for a week. Usually when I am gone, it doesn't mean I am not wanting to share my activities, it just means I am too active to sit down and write. How can that be you ask?



Miss K ran fever ALL last week, from Sunday until Friday. The doctor said it was just a nasty virus. Really? Tell me something I didn't already know and give me a magic cure all. I hate when my kids are sick. She must get better I told them, she is turning 7 on the 31st and we have a FOUR hour birthday party with her friends.

FOUR HOURS? What can anyone do in four hours with 12 giggly girls. Oh I promise you, it will be busy. The picture above is just a hint of what is to come. Stay tuned.

On February 4, 2014, I will be chatting it up on Twitter at 1pm CST with Offers.com during their #STSMchat (save time save money). We will be discussing party planning on a budget . I cannot wait to hear more ideas to help me save time and money. Be sure to go read more about it on their blog!

Also in the birthday post, there will be a special giveaway from Punch Place Plus. Be sure to go like them now on Facebook!

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Catching the TACKY Words and Locking Them Up with #TackyBox: A Review

Oh be careful little mouths what you say. And big mouths too.

I really have been quoting this song a lot lately in my blog posts haven't I? Well this time I am not going to tell you about a specific incident, but rather a new tool that we are using around our home to catch the TACKY words and lock them away forever. 

Miss K holding the Tacky Box, along with the companion book Margo's Magnificent Choice.
The Tacky Box. The Tacky Box is a wooden box that stores any and all bad words that Miss K's hears/says. These words are written on a pieces of paper that are provided by The Tacky Box. She then takes those pieces of paper and locks them away in the Tacky Box to never use again.  Now I'm not just talking about the only three letter curse word that I know she used when she was five, and still remembers, but also unkind phrases and tacky behavior that she, her brother, classmates and her parents use. 

I promise you, you do not want to be written down and placed in the box. 
(We are working on tactful tacky observations, I promise.)
Miss K chose to do her weekly book report last week over the book Margo's Magnificent Choice. 

Miss K's decorated Tacky Box. She wants her box to be beautiful on the outside, so it hides the tacky on the inside. 

We are only a week into this project. I cannot wait to report back to you later how the Tacky Box project is going at our nest. Be sure to check out the Tacky Box at the links below and tell me what you think.

I PROMISE, this WILL NOT be the last time you hear about this parenting tool. 


A mother and grandmother duo created Margo’s (Max’s) Magnificent Choice, a book sold with The Tacky Box Set, which is an effective parenting tool as well as a fun read for children.

The two books – gender specific to the child but otherwise the same – illustrate the negative effect of tacky words and behaviors and the rewards of choosing kindness. Margo’s (Max’s) Magnificent Choice is a 32-page hardcover book. Each page has a brightly-colored original watercolor painting that will capture the imagination and interest of young children. The fun story is an affirmation of the power of choosing to be kind and introduces children to the concept of locking up unkind words and actions in the tacky box and never using them again.

Through the pages of these beautifully illustrated books, children will follow Margo (Max) the Monkey as they learn the value of choosing kind words over tacky words. Boys and girls will want to emulate the monkey’s magnificent choice to refrain from repeating tacky language that he or she is sure to hear.

A wise old owl equips Margo (Max) with a Tacky Box to help her (him) lock up undesirable words and remove them from heart and mind. After reading the book, parents can present their child with his or her own authentic Tacky Box. The act of decorating the Tacky Box transforms the box into the child’s personal property.

The Tacky Box becomes a visual tool to help remind children to choose kind words and get rid of undesirable ones. Parents will be amazed at the effectiveness of writing the tacky word on a piece of paper and putting it in the box. Children become the example of good manners and a kind heart.

The Tacky Box Set includes a hardback copy of Margo’s (Max’s) Magnificent Choice, an authentic, stamped 5”x8” wooden Tacky Box, a note pad with the image of Max and Margo, and suggestions for use from the authors. For optimal success, all three must work together.

Tacky Box links: 

Birthdays on a Budget

For some reason I decided to have Winter babies. December 12 and January 31! Ouch. Those dates are hard on the pocket books. No matter how much I plan to save up for my children's birthday and parties, the savings ends up going to the essentials in life- food, shelter, utilities, clothing and doctors.

I am telling you right now. Pinterest can be your friend and your frustrating enemy. I like the ideas, but I am an extreme DIY mom and I do not like paying for things I can do myself. For instance my daughter is turning seven in a few short weeks. She is totally into all things American Girl Doll. Now that is a pricey subject that just blows any household budget. Thankfully we have a few family members who are willing to go together and have now for a few years to make Miss K's dreams come true in the doll category.

But, how do I possibly pull off an American Girl Party for her and her friends? For me....

1. After holiday sales. Think red, white, silver, stars. Seriously, you can do this for almost any party, boy/girl any holiday!

2. Peruse Pinterest and pin ideas to your child's personally named party board. If you do not individualize your party boards, you should think about it..

3. Make your own invitations. Use PicMonkey, Word, or other software programs that you are familiar with. Or Evite. I love Evite.

4. The cake. Can you open a box? Do you have an oven? A cake ball maker? My $19.99 cake ball maker has entertained now at 6 parties. I love this appliance. So much that my mother in law asked for one for her birthday one year. Score!! Seriously, cakes are just going to be ate. Make one and forget it. I have bought a few in my life. We eat the homemade ones a lot better and faster. 

5. The venue. This is a toughy. I do not like paying for places to host parties, so we typically go for the "at home" parties. To be honest with you, my home is small and although I love to entertain, I used to shy away from hosting in my own home. Guess what? Kids do not care. They have fun no matter where. I will say this particular party is not going to be in my home, but rather my mother in laws. She has a looooong table that will sit the girls and their dolls perfectly! We are blessed. 

6. For a girl party to be a success, I think you only have to have a few things. Food/drink, play and/or craft and an open mind. Remember, the party is about celebrating her and letting her enjoy some one on one time with her friends. The preparation you put into it makes it fun and enjoyable for all. The smiles are priceless. 

These are just a few of my tips for birthdays on a budget. On February 1, you will have to look out for my actually party post to see what fun the girls have.

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P.S. Just a  plug, but on February 4, 2014, I will be chatting it up on Twitter at 1pm with Offers.com during their #STSMchat (save time save money). We will be discussing party planning on a budget further. I cannot wait to hear more ideas to help me save time and money. Be sure to go read more about it on their blog!

Chalkboard Loom Band Valentine's Day Printable

I cannot believe it is already January 15th. I am in full blown party planning mode. Really. Here is my list of upcoming events:

January 31- An American Girl Party for my little princess. This party is going to be soooo cool. The post will go up on February 1, then on February 4, be sure to join me at 1pm CST with Offers.com during their #STSM (save time save money) chat on Twitter.

February 14- Valentine's Day (which is what this post is about)

February 28- PTA Bingo Night, yours truly heads up the committee that is putting this event on and let me just say, I am so glad we rescheduled it to this date rather than January 24.

Anywho...my little princess jumped on the loom bracelet craze in late August when we attended a free clinic at Toys R Us. Let's just say, she loves making these bracelets. It is a great skill builder for children and keeps her busy for hours.

I cannot even begin to tell you how many bands we have bought, how many YouTube videos she has watched, and how many bracelets have been given away. And now, TWENTY more are on the list to make. Those 20 are for her classmates for Valentines Day. After seeing Pinterest, I am a little behind in getting my idea/card out there, but oh well. One of these days I will have my Christmas planned at Halloween, and my Valentine's Day planned by Christmas. 

If you have been reading my blog much this past year you know I love all things chalkboards. So I am incorporating my love and Miss K's into her cards this year. I made these in PicMonkey. So if you decide to add your child's name, just visit this link and save the image then open and add text to the image. So easy!!! Once she gets the bracelets done, I will just slip them around the card/photo. I am just going to have mine printed off at Walgreens in 4x6 prints. If you have questions, please email me or comment. 

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Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Dear Mr. Flo Rida...

Hello Mr. Rida. I have been sitting on this letter to you now for 12 days. Frankly I have been upset with you. I know you don't care. Why should you? You don't even know my name or will you ever even see this blog post. Like I said, you do not care. But know this, I forgive you. It is not your job to make sure that my children, ages 13 and 6, do not hear or listen to your catchy lyrics. Lyrics about a word/action so innocent, that you or your writers took and twisted into what could possibly be a carnal act .

You see, Mr. Rida, my kids want to learn to whistle. The way whistling is meant to be. After ONE listen, both of my children were so proud of themselves for learning a new song and the possibility of learning to whistle. I stepped out of the vehicle for 10 minutes. I slacked in my parenting role big time and allowed you in. I listened to what they were singing during that 200 mile drive that evening, that took five hours. Something wasn't sitting right. When I finally arrived at home, the first thing I said to my husband is the kids are singing a new song. I don't know who sings it or what the name is, but it involves whistling. We need to look it up.

I looked it up. I found your name. Your name is not on my radar or radio. First flag. Then I began reading the lyrics. My husband stopped me. I immediately felt dirty. I am almost 40 years old. I am not innocent by any means.

My kids are raised in a Christian home. They LOVE Jesus. Yes, I do try to shelter them from the likes of music and acts you sing about. My kids are 13 and 6. I want to protect their innocence. I want them to be virtuous and pure. Do you have children? Do they sing these songs? How do you feel about that?

I wonder if when you were a child if anyone ever sang to you the Bible song "O Be Careful, Little Eyes"? There is a verse in there that says this:

O be careful little ears what you hear
O be careful little ears what you hear
There's a Father up above
And He's looking down in love
So, be careful little ears what you hear

As childish that song may be, it speaks volumes to me, even as an adult. God's love is never ending. He loves you Mr. Rida, He always has. You obviously have a love for music. I pray for you to give that love back to God and use it for His glory and kingdom. Sing His praises. Those songs are the sweetest sounds ever, especially out of the mouths of children. I stand each Sunday with a group of Kindergartners and 1st Graders, hearing their voices and seeing their hands raised praising my King brings tears to my eyes each week. They love music.

I leave you with this verse Mr. Rida: 
Sing to him, sing praises to him; tell of all his wondrous works! Psalms 105:2

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Friday, January 3, 2014

Today's Post: My Word For the Year- RESTORE

The word RESTORE stands out to me for 2014. Today I am guest posting at the Happy First blog. Be sure to visit me there today to read my thoughts on 2014 and my restoration process. 

I would love to hear your Word for the Year and thoughts!

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