Friday, January 23, 2015

The Ultimate DIY Bundle

There aren’t enough hours in the day, right? With work, helping the kids with their homework, preparing meals, cleaning up after everyone and putting yet another load of laundry on, there’s very little time for sleep – let alone DIY and crafting!

 But do you look at that bare wall in the den and that tatty tablecloth on the kitchen table, and just wish you had a few hours to do something about them? Or do you browse through those wonderful crafting successes on Pinterest and think to yourself that “one day” you’ll have a few more minutes to yourself so that you too can create something incredible?

You’re not alone – there’s a huge community of people out there who are feeling just as frustrated as you are!

Thankfully though, there’s an exciting new product to help you quickly and easily get into (or back into) the creative projects you’ve been desperate to start. It’s called The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and it’s a collection of carefully curated DIY and crafting eBooks and eCourses from the world’s leading authors and bloggers in the industry.

For the crazy low price of just $34.95, you get access to a carefully curated library of over 76 eBooks and eCourses. And let me reassure you that this really is great value: the Ultimate Bundles team (who produced the resource) has spent MONTHS seeking out the most respected experts in the industry and asking them to contribute their premium-quality eBooks and eCourses. These really are the best of the best when it comes to DIY and crafting advice and information.
Topics in the bundle include:
  • Home decor
  • Furniture painting
  • Photography
  • Chalk pastels
  • Handmade gifts
  • Homemade skincare products
  • Cake decorating
  • Photography and photo-editing
  • Paint colors and interior design
  • …and a whole lot more (76 eBooks and eCourses in total) – to help you be inspired or get started with your next DIY or crafting project!
There’s no need to worry about information overload though: The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with a complete guide to getting started, so that you can know exactly which resource to use for your specific crafting or DIY project and jump straight into it with confidence!

Hurry though! The Ultimate DIY Bundle will only be on sale for 6 days – from 8am EST on Wednesday, January 21 until 11.59pm EST on Monday, January 26.

You can buy with complete confidence because you’re covered by the Ultimate Bundles 30-day money-back guarantee. That means you have a full 30 days to enjoy all the eBooks and eCourses in the bundle, and if you don’t think they provided enough value, you’ll get a full refund.
Not only that, but The Ultimate DIY Bundle comes with 5 awesome bonuses, worth over $150. That’s 4x the price of the bundle alone! These include…
A free $15 Store Credit PLUS 8×10 Art Print from Hope Ink ($43 Value), a free online class from Craftsy (up to $60 Value), free $15 store credit to, a free sewing pattern PLUS a Premium Video Class from UpCraft Club ($19.99 Value), and free, full digital copies of Where Women Create Magazine and Greencraft Magazine ($20 value) from Stampington and Co.

So, don’t miss your chance to grab The Ultimate DIY Bundle, and get 76 incredible eBooks and eCourses for just $34.95. All you need to do is take action by midnight on Monday, January 26!
This amazing deal ends in just…

Pick up your copy right now, before it’s too late. Or, learn more here.

Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.

Five on Friday

The Ultimate Bundles
I'm going to do a big post on this later today (so stay tuned) but I stumbled across the Humbled Homemaker's blog through Money Saving Mom's blog because I was drawn to anything with "how we paid off debt" or "how to live on one income" in the title.  Both of these blogs are awesome by the way.  Anyway, The Humbled Homemaker has this ebook collection called the Ultimate Bundle.  They are different bundles of ebooks that are offered throughout the year.  I ordered the Ultimate Healthy Living 2015 bundle earlier this month and it's really awesome.  A ton of good ebooks on different topics like healthy recipes, essential oils, exercise, etc etc.  Now there is a bundle out there called the Ultimate DIY Bundle.  How fun does that sound?!  It's only available for a few days though so if you are interested...don't delay.  I loved the bundles so much that I became an affiliate of the company.  You can order the bundle for yourself here.

Movie + Popcorn
So I went on Wednesday (by myself) to see Mockingjay finally (awesome movie btw).  Apparently, it's kinda hard to go see a movie when you have a baby... who knew.  I'm glad it was still in the theaters.  Anyways.  Since I was obviously seeing a movie that had been in the theaters for 3 months and it was a weekday in the middle of the day, I'm surprised I wasn't in the theater alone.  But I wasn't.  I was in there with about 10 other people.  And half of these people were popcorn eaters.  I'm not sure why movie=popcorn.  Let me preface all of this by saying that I really can't stand to hear people eat (which apparently really is a condition of some sort lol)

Have you ever noticed that there are different types of popcorn eaters? 
~You have the really quiet popcorn eaters who I think maybe also hate to hear people eat. (just a theory).  I don't mind these people. 
~Then, you have the handful eaters.  You know the ones... the ones who grab a handful of icky buttery popcorn and sling their head back as they toss several pieces of popcorn in their mouth at once. These are the ones that you have to see and hear at the same time.  Oy vey...
~The bag rattler where they dig down deep and loudly to get their popcorn. This usually goes hand in hand with the handful eaters which makes it even more annoying.
~Hmm... the single piece eaters.  The ones that pull out one piece at a time and loudly pop it in their mouth and crunch on it before they bother closing their mouth.

Ok...... enough about that. Haha

We got rid of cable in order to save some money when I left my job in December.  We have Netflix and that's been ok but there isn't much on there that I like.  I have Friends on at night just to give some background noise but for the most part, I just play Pandora all day which I guess is probably better anyway.  I do wish my smart tv had a CBS app though.  They have an all access offer so none of their shows are on Netflix and those are the only ones that I watched! I miss Scorpion, NCIS, and Big Bang Theory!  But we did find a new show that we like (SHIELD) and we watched the whole season so now we are waiting for season 2 to finish up and get on Netflix.  Guess we may be waiting a while.  I may get the CBS all access and just watch it on my surface.  But the thing is... I never really sit down and just watch tv (although I did with Scorpion).  I'm always playing on my surface or phone while a show is on.  Hmm...

Bad Lip-Reading of the NFL 2015
Seriously.  These make me laugh out loud and I could watch it over and over again.  Do yourself a favor and watch it...

A FREE printable
I love designing stuff so I figured why not design something and share it with everyone? Here's a quote that I like and a quick little printable that I threw together for your printing pleasure. (click on the picture for the link to where you can download the actual pdf)

Link-Ups. If you have a blog and want to link up with other bloggers posting... Check out these Friday Link-Up parties :)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Maddox {Three Months}

Three Months
Weight: 16lbs (based on me weighing without him then with him since he doesn't go back to the doctor until next month)
Height: 24.5in (again... based on our measurements)

~He is starting to get quite heavy.  Carrying him in the car seat is getting difficult. Probably just means I need to hit the gym.
~When he is crying, we can usually get him to stop by making airplane noises (or blowing raspberries... whatever).  Darren is much better at it than I am. I tend to stick with my shh-shh-shhing :)
~He's got some really great facial expressions and you can't help but wonder what's going on in that little head of his.
~He isn't quite laughing yet but his big open mouth smiles and coos are the best.
~I try to speak or sing to him in French every day.  I made his little puppy into "Jean Pierre Le Chien" and he talks to him.  He likes it.  Maybe he thinks it sounds funny.... idk.
~For a brief moment yesterday (while the house was quiet and Maddox was napping), I missed being pregnant.  Then he woke up and started crying and I got over it lol!
~He always has his hands near his face and we have to move them out of the way to feed him.
~He sucks on his knuckles.  Doesn't care about his thumb and keeps it tucked under his fingers.
~He HATES tummy time but he's getting a flat spot on the back of his head so we are going to have to torture him with it a little more often.  Hopefully he doesn't end up with the helmet.
~He's getting a little stronger in the bumbo. Still not quite there yet.
~He seems to know when it's time to us to eat.  He'll wake up or get fussy right when our plates are fixed.  Therefore, I can probably count on one hand how many times Darren and I have actually eaten together at the same time.
~For the most part, he's sleeping through the night.  We've had a couple nights where he'll sleep 8:30-7:30 and those are AWESOME! But then if his daily "schedule" gets thrown off and he's super tired at night, he might fall asleep earlier so I lay him down earlier and then he's awake at 4 or 5.  He'll typically go back to sleep for a couple hours after a bottle though.
~I can't get him to nap in his crib for some reason.  Hopefully that's just a phase.  He still naps in his boppy.  He takes a morning nap and afternoon nap (decent ones if I am lucky... if not, he's SO tired at night and a bit inconsolable until he just gives it up).

December 26, December 27, December 28

December 29, January 3, January 5

January 5, January 6, January 7 (he looks so small on our bed)

January 7 (first 2), January 8

January 8, January 9, January 12

January 12, January 13 (both)

January 14 (all three)

January 15, January 16, January 20

12 weeks

12 weeks (is he not the sweetest lil' butterball you've ever seen??)

3 months (13 weeks)

"Put me in coach"... this one was just for daddy :)

*swoon* love love love this little smile :)

I love his facial expressions

with Jean Pierre Le Chien ;)

Growing oh so fast.  Bittersweet.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Five on Friday

I kind of feel like life is in limbo right now so this week has come and gone without another blog post.   Joining up for the Five on Friday again and new to the Oh Hey! Friday link up... Here's what's going on in my head this week ( can be a scary place):

Blog and Design
  I want to move my blog over to Wordpress some time this year.  In order to do that, I have to first figure out how to do it without losing everything and then I have to figure out how to work Wordpress and get the design that I want.  I want to teach myself how to do it.  If I find that I like it... maybe I can make that into something.  Seeing what other people charge to create blog designs makes me want to learn.  Hey if they can do it, why on earth can't I??  I also want to work on some digital design work.  I've always loved planners and stuff like that so I want to create some digital files and put them on Etsy.  I will also create birthday cards, signs, etc.  I tend to think of everything in terms of "How can I make something of myself with this?" 
What sort of digital designs do you search for on Etsy?

    I am going to work on re-building my portfolio again soon.  I already have some "models" lined up and am very excited to get behind the camera again.  I probably won't be doing them until some time in February though.  If something comes of it, awesome.  But I would only make it a part time thing.  Like 2-4 shoots a month.  Something like that.  And NO newborns or weddings lol  I can direct people to some awesome photographers if they need those things :)  I am going to stick with little ones, families, seniors, etc.  Maybe even a birthday party or two.  We'll see. 

    Darren and I have shared a desk for over 2 years now.  He works part time from home and uses 2 monitors.  So every time I need to use the computer, I have to switch over the monitor to my computer.  It's annoying so I don't do it often lol  We've decided to part ways on the shared desk thing so I can have my own work space... especially since I'm home much more now and would like to start doing design work on the side.  Maddox is usually asleep in bed by about 8pm so that would give me a good 2 hours to work on stuff plus what I can do in the mornings before he's up.  I've done some perusing on Pinterest for ideas of how I can make a creative workspace (with very limited space to do it) and I've found a few desks that I like.  So here are a couple desk ideas I have so far.  I don't know exactly where it would be going so I'm not going to post my design ideas yet because I don't know what will work. I'm not looking for anything expensive and simple is probably best. 
Which one do you like best?

1. Big Lots    2. Walmart     3, 4, 5. Ikea

    I have found that I pretty much hate about 90% of "Today's Top 40" in music.  Unless I'm in the mood for country, I rely a lot on my friend, Pandora.  Darren read something the other day that said we gravitate to the music of our mid-teen years.  I have to agree with that.  Although I really love my Michael Buble station on Pandora, I am now listening to a station titled "90s, 2000s, Todays Hits".  While I would add a few artists to this list, it has been pretty good.  I have what I call "music memories" meaning I can hear a song and a memory from my past will pop into my head. Perhaps that's why we gravitate to music from our teen years.  Things were much easier then (@ least through my adult eyes). 
Anyone else feel this way?

   Of course :)  I spend every day with this sweet baby and yet he just changes before my eyes.  It's crazy... and bittersweet.  Today, I tried to take some pictures of him (with my real camera) but this was pretty much his feelings on it.  He made me aware very quickly that he wanted nothing to do with it today.  Hopefully he's more into it next week when I need to get his 3 month pictures :)  3 months!  Yikes! Wasn't it just yesterday?

Link-Ups. If you have a blog and want to link up with other bloggers posting... Check out these Friday Link-Up parties :)

Friday, January 9, 2015

Five on Friday {Random}

I haven't participated in Five on Friday in a long time and I'm trying to be more consistent in my blogging again.  So this is a link-up with other bloggers who are doing the same type of posts today.  It's just five things on your mind from the day or the week or whatever :)

My daily guilty pleasure, hot chocolate with lots of marshmallows.  I really do put a lot of marshmallows but not as many as are in this picture.  I did that on purpose lol  I plan on kicking the sugar obsession very soon so I will definitely miss my hot chocolate.  And of course... every drink tastes better in a cute penguin mug ;)

Here are 3 of my favorite random apps on my phone right now... (and no, I'm not affiliated with any of them)

Camera + is a camera app that allows you a little more flexibility than the default camera on the iphone.  It allows you to adjust your exposure which I think is pretty cool.  It also has an option that waits until you are holding the phone steady to take the picture and it makes this little noise when it's about to click and that seems to catch the attention of little ears pretty well  lol
Snapseed is an editing app.  There are just some cool features that it has like being able to adjust sharpness and contrast and brightness of the picture.
Then there's the Walmart Savings Catcher.  This is within the Walmart store app but you just scan in your receipt and it searches other local stores.  If it finds another store that has an item you bought for less, it gives you that much money.  It stores the money until you request them to send you an e-giftcard.  Right now, we have about $44.  And for someone who is on a TIGHT budget and has to buy formula, I will say hallelujah when I have a few more dollars and it allows me to buy 2 large containers of formula.  lol  We've been using the savings catcher for several months now.  It's a slow process to get a decent amount of money but we also don't shop at Walmart all the time.
I, of course, had to include a picture of my sweet baby boy.  He has the sweetest smile and when you really get him going, his eyes will light up and he has a big open mouth grin.  When I kiss him on the cheek, he smiles with an Elvis kind of half smile.  I adore him.  I thank God for him multiple times a day, even at 1am (and maybe 4am, 6am... lol) when I get up to feed him.
I joined a ladies' Bible study on Tuesday mornings.  Our first class was this week.  It's going to be an intense study.  I haven't even started the "homework".  If any of you have ever taken a Beth Moore study... you know her studies are intense.  It was also the first time Maddox has gone into childcare.  I was really apprehensive.  Thankfully he's a pretty chill baby...especially in the mornings.  When I went to pick him up, he was the only one not crying (it was very obvious that it was either lunch time or nap time for the other babies that were in there).  Anyway...this is the study we are doing (below).   Even if you don't have time to do the homework (and who knows...I may not!), going to listen to the video is worth the time for sure. 

We have a pretty crazy thing about to go down that I didn't want to reveal quite yet.  We've told a few people but I'll announce it soon ( another month or so).  And NO, I am certainly NOT pregnant.  Whew, just thinking about that makes me a little queasy.  I don't know how women do it that have babies so close together.  It's not baby related at all (I PROMISE!).  But my mind is swirling in all kinds of directions with it and it will be great fun and somewhat stressful all at the same time ;)  Stay tuned for pictures...
Well...that's my five.  If you have a blog and want to participate, you can go to A. Liz Adventures blog for the link-up info :) 

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Maddox {Newborn Pictures}

   I've done several newborn sessions myself and I knew how hard they can be sometimes so I didn't even want to have to think about it when I had Maddox.  I'm so glad I booked someone else to take care of it for us.  I booked Kristen Hinson Photography to do them because she had done several of my friends' newborn pictures and I loved them.  She really is the best.  I highly recommend her if you are having a baby soon :) 

   I seriously cannot believe my 14lb chunky monkey was this small! He was 6 days old (and about 5lbs 10ish-oz) in these pictures.  It's just so crazy how FAST they grow! And if I look tired in these... well, it's because I AM! lol


Well... that's all for now.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Looking Back and Moving Forward...

   I wanted to take a minute to look back at 2014 in order to look forward to 2015.  It was certainly a whirlwind of a year.  Finding out I was pregnant and going through a pregnancy that was pretty smooth up until about 33 weeks then being in and out of the hospital a few times was hard.  Then my sweet boy was born toward the end of October and life is definitely not the same.  Being a mom has been the hardest but most amazing thing I've ever done in my life. 

   2014 is ending with me being unemployed for the first time in about 7 years.  We are going to give this stay at home mom thing a trial run.  We have plans up in the air... waiting on God to give us direction and show us His plan.  I look so forward to seeing what 2015 will hold.  I know there will be extremely hard times (because that's life...) but I pray the good times far outweigh the bad.

   So I made a few goals for 2015.  Without goals, you work toward nothing.  And putting them in writing makes them real.  So here they are...

1) Pay off the car.
     ~I hate car payments.  As much as it would be nice to, I don't need to drive a new car.  As a matter
       of fact, our "newest" car will be 10 years old in 2015.  I would much rather be payment and debt
       free.  Although all the fun new features would be nice.  Maybe one day I can just pay cash for a
       newer car after all my debt is paid off. (hey... gotta stay positive, right?)

2) Lose 45 pounds (also read exercise and eat healthy again).
     ~This may take a while but ideally, I'd like this to happen by my birthday in April.

3) Run a 5k (or ambitiously a couple).
     ~I'd also like this to happen by my birthday.  I almost made it to one at the end of 2013 but then
       we moved and things got all flipped around.  I stopped running and exercising all together then
       got pregnant and used that as an excuse because I was so extremely tired most of the time.  But
       2015.... I have no excuses.

4) Make new friends.
      ~Perhaps this one sounds a little childish but for some reason I just crave the opportunity to meet
       new friends.  Making friends as an adult is difficult.  I'm hoping to find a few moms that have
       babies about the same age as Maddox to hang out with and hopefully their husbands are cool too.
       (again... staying positive loll)

5) Do one random act of kindness a month.
      ~Preferably do them anonymously but I know that's not always possible.  I'm going to have to
      get creative given that my new job status is going to make life very hard financially.

6) Have a couple family photo sessions done.
       ~This one will also be difficult to do financially but maybe I could get a part time job somewhere
       to help with any extra stuff.  Hard to find a part time job that isn't retail.  I really don't want to
       work on the weekend since that is special family time to me but if I have to, I have to.

7) Get back into photography.
       ~I've thrown around the idea of starting my photography business back but I'm not quite there
       100%.  I have a lot to think through when it comes to that.  So for now, I will say to get back into
       photography period and try new things... think outside of the box and out of my comfort zone. 
       Maybe do a couple online photography challenges through the year and a self-portrait project

8) Do monthly pictures with Maddox.
       ~I'm sure this just sounds like a given but I'm including it so I could make sure to do it.  Seeing
       how much he has changed already in just two months makes me want to keep up with
       everything.  Being a photographer, it's hard to get past only wanting to work with the best light
       and seeing all the negatives about pictures that I take but really I need to put my mommy goggles
       on and just go with it.  I look back at pictures of myself from when I was a kid and the quality of
       those really suck but I'm thankful to have the pictures anyway.

9) Start doing my quiet time again
      ~I've let myself get so slack with this.  When we lived in our apartment (last year), I would get up
      at 4:45am and go down to the gym and run (or wog lol), get ready for work, and have plenty of
      time to do my quiet time.  I felt better when I did that.  I need to do it again.  I also want to find a
      women's Bible study during the week (during the day where they also have childcare).

10) Be content where we are or find a house that fits within our budget.
      ~When I say the "within our budget" part, it means the budget that comes with me staying at
      home with Maddox and not relying on any money I may or may not bring in.  With that will come
      a lot of compromise and sacrifice but I think I'm there.  I've always had a champagne taste on a
      beer budget... like cheap beer lol.  But having Maddox and having the desire to stay home with
      him grow exponentially when he was born changes my mind on things.  If we could find a house
      that at least has good bones and we could potentially fix it up a bit to make it ours, I think that
      would be awesome.  I would love for this to happen this year but if not, I'm going back to the first
      part of the goal... just be content.  We are in a nice condo in a nice neighborhood.  I've always had
      a problem with just being still and being content.

So what are your goals for 2015?  What are you going to do your best to work toward?  Do you reward yourself when you reach those goals? If so, how?