Sunday, March 11, 2018

Monthly Self Care Project: March

 March 11, 2018

I was at Michael's and I was alone. My girls were with Gabe. I had debated taking some time and putting on makeup and what not, and taking this picture later this afternoon, but decided against it. 
This is reality, and sometimes, reality ain't pretty. As most of you know, my Dad's battling multiple myeloma again. 
My kids both have the cold, my husband has the cold, and I have it too. 
I'm in the process of spring cleaning my house, and I work ridiculous hours and I just don't have time for makeup and primping and that's okay. 
Do you know why it's okay? 
Because I'm still standing.
Because my family is fed and happy, despite their cold. 
Even though you can't tell in the picture, my shirt says "Strong Like Me", and I do feel strong, because my strength comes from God. 
I decided to take the picture in front of these silk flowers because even though I don't feel very pretty right now, they sure are.

Monday, March 5, 2018


This is our 3rd year raising Painted Lady butterflies. In 2016, I thought it would be a cool thing to try "just this once."

My daughter, of course, fell in love with watching them emerge from the chrysalis, and last year, we did it again. I was pregnant and it had even more meaning for me.

6 days after our release, I gave birth to Miss Josie.

Our 2018 batch of caterpillars arrived last week. They are sitting pretty on top of my mantel (don't worry, I don't turn the fireplace on with them up there), watched over by my "Chrysalis" Willow Tree Angel.

Stay tuned for weekly updates!

And remember...

Happy Homemaker Monday: March 5, 2018

Good afternoon, friends! It's been an odd weekend. My Dad went back into the hospital, with more vomiting and nausea. We found out that his cancer has returned. He is ready to fight, thank goodness, but I know he's having a rough time.
Please include Dad in your prayers. That said, HHM is definitely helping to keep me sane. 

Breakfast Time, what's on the plate: I guess I should say right now that stress and I are not friends, and that the first thing to go when I'm stressed out is my appetite. So, nothing.

On today's to-do list: Work. Clean. Exist.

Currently Reading: My Bible. I finished "Paper Roses" over the weekend, and now I'm waiting anxiously for the next book in the series.

On the TV: I started watching "Retribution" on Netflix, but goodness, that was some dark subject matter. As a loss parent, seeing a pregnant woman get murdered...oh, it did something to me. Instead I'm watching "Girls Incarcerated" and re-watching The Great British Baking Show.

The weather outside is: Bipolar. It's supposed to be nice today, decent tomorrow, and then boom, 30's with teens as nighttime lows. What is going on, NC?

On the menu this week: Bear with me here, friends, as I try my best to actually cook for my family in the midst of this insanity. While I cannot guarantee that certain meals will fall on certain days, I will tell you that today, before I leave for work, I will throw a few seared cube steaks into the crockpot with mushroom gravy and small potatoes. At some point this week, we will have a meatloaf casserole, a "catch whatever can be caught/leftover/whatever" day, and a spaghetti squash, as well as chicken tacos and breakfast for dinner.

If I get a few minutes to myself, I will probably: Cry. Or read. Or both, ya know, multitasking. Or sleep. Both of my girls have the cold, and I fear I am next.

What I am creating this week: At the moment, nothing. I'm focusing on keeping my sanity. Maybe I need to break out the sketchbook?

New Recipe I tried or want to try: I made beef curry over the weekend. I love Indian Food, and I have no idea how I went over 30 years without every trying it. Goodness!

Favorite photo from the camera this week: 

My youngest turned 9 months last Wednesday. We took some pictures outside. Yes, Ella has blue in her hair :)

Bible verse, Devotional 

Have a beautiful week, and stay well my friends!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Happy Homemaker Monday: February 26, 2018

Good morning, friends.
It's been a long week/week-end. On Thursday, I learned my Dad was in the emergency room at the hospital in the town where he lives. Long story short, but some tumors were found and he headed to his oncologists. At the time this is written, we are waiting on biopsy and bloodwork. Our biggest fear, of course, is that it's cancer again.
Update: While writing this post, I received a call from Dad. The bloodwork is back and it's NOT multiple myeloma. Now, we wait for the biopsy.
Please, pray for my Dad. Pray for peace, whatever the outcome. Pray for my family. Thank you all so much in advance.

I'm doing this to keep some semblance of order and sanity.

Breakfast time, what's on the plate this morning: Brown rice and vegetables. Breakfast food has usually made me sick to my stomach, and it's just that much worse this morning with the situation with Dad.

On today's to do list: 1) Work, 2) Clean the bathrooms, 3) Try to remember to breathe and function, like a normal human being.

Currently Reading: I meant to start "Paper Roses" by Karen Ann Hopkins, but I haven't yet. That's the latest book in the Serenity's Plain Secrets series.

On the TV this week: Forensic Files (mine and Ella's new favorite) and Rescue Mediums (our other favorite!)

The weather outside is: Cloudy and dreary. Still pretty warm, but it's supposed to cool down a lot by the end of the week.

On the menu this week:
Monday: Turkey pasta bake.
Tuesday: Zuppa Toscana
Wednesday: Breakfast Casserole
Thursday: Hamburger/Chili Mac, garlic bread
Friday: chicken alfredo casserole
Saturday: Ella's choice (she says probably frozen pizza)
Sunday:  Spaghetti and Meatballs

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will: Probably have a good cry.

What I'm creating this week: Absolutely nothing. The rug was pulled out from under all our feet, you guys. I just gotta get through today and then we will know what we're dealing with. Again, prayer is so appreciated.

New Recipe I tried or want to try this week: Well, I've mastered a low-carb version of Chicken Cordon Bleu, and I'm going to try a new version of chili/hamburger macaroni. This week isn't very gourmet, but I'm trying.

Favorite photo from the camera: 

So, I got a new camera this week. A big, bad DSLR that I've been wanting for years. I'm still practicing with it. Also, my boss got me flowers on Friday because he saw much this situation was weighing on me, but I was still showing up for work every day (even though he says I can take off as much time as I need...but if I do that, I will go insane)

Bible Verse, Devotional: I have to keep repeating Jeremiah 29:11.
I will update on Dad as I can, have a beautiful week!

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

General Chaos and a Goal List Update

Whew! The weather here has been amazing the last few days, so I've been as far away from the computer as possible! Just a quick goal-list check in.

1) Lose the weight: Working on it. Trying to eat better and exercise more!

2) Take my girls to the beach. It may end up being the beach here in NC, but I've got something in the works!!!

3) Sell some artwork/lettering: I'm working on a piece right now that someone has already bought!

4) Do something wild with my hair: Stay tuned. Ella and I are both going to do something this weekend.

5) Learn to make butter chicken from scratch. Done! I made it and it was AMAZING!!!!

6) Buy a wafflemaker. Going to cross that off my list this weekend, too!

7) Start a family tradition. It's in the works!

8) Pay the adoption fee for a cat for someone at the Humane Society. (The cat won't be for me, sigh) It's in the works, too. Going to start a change jar just for that!

9) Rescue another cat. You guys saw that coming, didn't you?

Monday, February 19, 2018

Happy Homemaker Monday: February 19, 2018

Happy Monday! I meant to have this up earlier, but I ended up going to breakfast with a friend and then just got busy with the kids. It's Presidents' Day so it's one of those lazy days (except then I get caught up with a million little household chores), but I still  have to go to work in a few hours.

Moving on!

Breakfast time, what's on the plate this morning: It was chicken and waffles. It's one of those Southern things that I'd never had, despite the fact that I've lived here for almost 8 years. It was a bit weird, but I'm kind of into it.

On today's to-do list: Cook dinner before I work, go to work, pack up some more boxes for Goodwill and some clothes for Ella's little bestie.

Currently Reading: "Hidden in Plain Sight" by Karen Ann Hopkins. It's the 4th book in the series of Amish mysteries. Part of me would love to live the Amish life, it seems so simple...but the very fact that there are so many murder mysteries written about them makes me think twice, ha!

On the T.V. today: Criminal Minds and Drop Dead Diva, but mostly Criminal Minds. Matthew Gray Gubler is an amazing actor and his hair is the stuff dreams are made of!

The weather outside is: Cloudy but warm. I think I can handle it.

On the menu this week:
Monday: Hashbrown Breakfast Casserole
Tuesday: Ham Alfredo
Wednesday: Cheatin' Chicken Soup
Thursday: Denver Pot Roast, Potatoes
Friday: Every man/woman/kid for himself/herself (I may bring home a pizza or something)
Saturday: Pork Loin
Sunday: Turkey Spaghetti

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will: Work on those bookmarks. Something else got my attention this week.

What I am creating this week: Bookmarks. A cleaner home. Oh, and I just finished this. It's hard to see, but it is blue and gold.

New recipe I tried or want to try: I finally made Butter Chicken from scratch and it was incredible. I'm really impressed! Also, I made Eggplant Lasagna. Both definitely worth a make-again. Do you have any favorite low carb recipes?

Favorite photo from the camera: I honestly can't just choose one this week.

On Valentine's Day, I took the girls to two parks in town, and we had a great time. It was over 60 degrees that day, and it was just awesome to hang out with both of them.

You can really see that Ella is almost a teenager (whyyyy?!) and Josie would honestly live in a swing if I let her.

Bible Verse, Devotional: 

Have a great day!!!

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Monthly Self-Care Project: February

Honestly, the only reason this photo was taken is because it's the 11th and I am committed to the project.
This last month has been ROUGH. Trying to balance a family and a household and work and trying to be a better person is hard.
I took this photo at Goodwill, where I took my 2 daughters and a friend to shop. I was pretty exhausted and I'm pretty sure that my "luminous" moisturizer wasn't holding it's own.
But, hey, I had my long-awaited rainbow baby in the carrier and two tween girls laughing through the aisles, and dang it, I was happy. 

I swear, something has to be done with this hair. And maybe some makeup wouldn't hurt?
I'm still working on this weight loss thing. 
Baby steps.
Gonna work on the put-together Mom look next month...unless something else comes up!