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Holidays, Homelife, Parenting

Encourage Your Mom Tribe on Mother’s Day

{{Originally published in 2016.}}

Remember snail mail?

I do. In fact, I used to send snail mail all. of. the. time.

I was OVERLY organized about this. I had a planner that had pockets for card storage each month. This meant I could purchase cards months ahead of time and they would be ready to sign and send.

My Gema (grandmother) and I used to laugh about my organized mailing habits because she received her birthday card on October 29 even though I was in the hospital after having a baby on October 28. (I mailed it in the morning before I went into labor)

I think that was the final birthday card that I ever sent on time. Or at all. Ever again.

Motherhood completely disrupted my overly organized methods in all areas, including my ability to recognize special occasions.  I just couldn’t keep up with cards every month anymore.

But I missed sending cards!

I enjoy writing notes of encouragement to the people who are important to me so I became determined to find a solution to my disorganization.

Then it hit me…MOTHERS DAY!

Instead of keeping up with birthdays, anniversaries, and other events all year long, I could send letters to ALL of the people once a year.

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Holidays, Homeschooling, Uncategorized

December Homeschooling

It’s that time of year when the magic of Christmas meets the requirements of homeschool and I attempt to find enchanting ways to bring them together.


Perhaps I could teach lessons while wearing Christmas antlers, but I haven’t bought a pair….yet.

In the meantime, here are some ideas we are trying this season:

December Homeschooling: Games

We add a few new board games to our game collection every December. In the past, we opened one a week, but this year I just pulled them both out right at the start.

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Gifts, Holidays

Gifts for a Teen Girl

Need a few thoughtful and original gifts for a teen girl in your life?

I was at a complete loss when it came to Christmas for my teen girls.  I started searching online and asking friends for ideas.

In the end, I am thrilled about the options I found for the 13 and 15-year-old girls in this house.

Now I will pass on some of the great gifts for a teen girl that were given to me.

Make gift giving easy with this life of gift ideas for a teen girl. Continue Reading

Holidays, Homelife, Parenting

Confessions of an Imperfect Mom: Christmas Edition

Hey Mommas.

It’s easy to feel like a complete failure sometimes, isn’t it?

Hashtag “Momfail”, right?

I suspect it is even easier to feel like a failure during the holidays because the expectations of the season make the bar feel so high.

And scrolling through social media doesn’t help.  It usually pushes that hypothetical bar even higher. Everyone else appears to be doing life beautifully while you know the reality of your own situation.

Well, I am here to assure you that for every pretty picture of Christmas lights hanging in the kids’ bedrooms, there are realities that weren’t captured for the world to see.

So as this season of giving comes to a close, let my final gift to you be a few of my #momfail stories this December.

It isn't always picture perfect. I am an imperfect mother and I am learning to embrace who I am.

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Holidays, Homelife

Stocking Stuffers that are Worth the Money

Checking out at the store register, I am surrounded by stocking stuffers.  Lots of silly and goofy items trying to tempt me to fill up stockings for my children by purchasing them.

I am not tempted.  I can’t stand useless stocking stuffers.  Who needs a bunch of stuff that is just going to be taking up space in the landfill by New Years?  Not this momma.

And my guess is you don’t need items that you’ll want to throw away by New Years. Continue Reading

Holidays, Homelife, Uncategorized

Wrap up Your Year and Write New Year Goals

{{UPDATED FOR 2019}}

I love the feeling of a fresh start.

The sun comes up and a new day begins.  Yesterday is washed away and a clean slate awaits.

There are times that I deeply appreciate the feeling of a new school week. I am ready for five new school days to plan adventures and improve upon the week before.

When I tear a month from our wall calendar and see the fresh one before me, I feel a sense of accomplishment and anticipation.  What do I want this month to look like?  How do I want it to feel?

Finally, there exists the mother all fresh starts: New Years Day. One year comes to an end and the next 356 days are waiting to be lived!

Click for your free PDF to wrap up the year with your kids and look ahead with plans for a new one!

New Year Goals with Kids: Reflecting on Last Year

The end of December is a time to reflect and re-evaluate the events of the previous twelve months. As I look ahead to the next twelve, it is a time of wonder, planning, and dreaming.  Everything feels like it gets a fresh start.

I love to take my children with me on their own journeys of reflecting and dreaming. To help them evaluate and plan, I print out a single page, “A Year in Review”, for them to complete.

It begins with a snapshot of who they are right now as they record a few of their favorite things.

Then we look back. We sit around the table together, sharing memories of the previous year. I love to hear what they remember.

Remember when the boys got stuck in the bathroom at the Grand Canyon?  Yeah. And after mom rescued them she told the next boy in line, “Try not to get stuck!”

I loved tubing at Zion.  And climbing Double Butt Cheek Arch.  (laughter erupts)  NOTE:  That would be Double Arch.

Did we go to Sliding Rock this year or last year?

These conversations about our previous year do my heart good. Sometimes I can be hard on myself, but as I listen to my kids’ laughter and discussion, they remind me of the many good memories that they will take with them.

New Year Goals with Kids: Dreaming for the New Year

Then we take some time to write our goals and dreams for the new year.

I love to travel, so I always ask them where they would like to go or visit during the year. I try to make these dreams happen, but doesn’t always happen that same year.

New Year Goals with Kids: Grab Your Copy 

Want to reflect on the current year with your kids? 

Subscribe to this blog and receive a copy of “Your Year in Review” in the subscriber resources:

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