Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Freedom and Creativity!

It's so weird that I have a million words that are ready to come out on this blog because for the last two years there has been nothing.  Moving to a new job was really hard.  It really suffocated me.  It suffocated who I am and all of my creativity.  There was so much pressure on me to just even keep my job. Seriously, I was almost cut this year with the budget.  I was the third person in line out of the two that got cut before me.  I'm so glad I made the choice to start up my photography again because I really think it helps me to be...well me.  I am really so happy.  I feel renewed and ready to go. I'm excited to share photos and crafty stuff.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Summer Update/Around Here

Hey everyone!  I thought I'd give you all a summer update.  I will post a complete bullet point update at the end of summer but I figure I should just touch base for now.  Summer is slipping away at a rapid pace...insert crying jag.

So far this summer, I've been really busy.  I'm restarting my photography business.  I've spent a lot of time building my portfolio and website.  I will share it as soon as I'm happy with it.  I hoping for a fall debut.  Its been really nice to have so much support from past clients and people in general that just want to help out....free photos.  I've learned a lot and I'm really happy about that.

The kids are fighting...I'm sure you picked that up from a previous post.  But I'm telling you it is like level 10 fighting.  In fact, I went on a shoot today and my friend was late.  I really enjoyed the peace and quiet as I waited for her and her kids to arrive.  I almost wanted to tell Erik they were an hour late so I didn't have to go home but alas we had last minute dinner plans with his family.

Oddly, my dogs are shedding like crazy.  I'm not sure what brought this on because it's never happened.  I'm constantly running the vacuum.  It's not that much fun.  Speaking of cleaning, we cleaned out the ENTIRE garage.  It took us five days.  It was absolute insanity.  I can't tell you my kitchen table is clean at the moment because I'm trying to jam an entire office into three cabinets.  It's not really going that well.

Okay, so I got all of that off my chest so I'll share some pictures now to make this post more lively.

No makeup selfie...but I did the unthinkable.  I cut my own bangs.  They don't look too shabby.

 Spent a ton of money for each kid to have their own room.  Yet, they apparently don't want their own rooms.

 Didn't buy popsicles so the kids made some out of water.  This was a surprising win.
 Took the kids to Sakura Grill.  They love that place.  It was a lot of fun.
 This hideous frog tried to kill me.  You can see the evil glint in his eye.
Cooking a brisket

 I'm loving having fresh flowers in the house.

 Chile from my garden
Erik takes his wood seriously.  That's what she said hahahaha (sorry too much Office watching)

 JoJo has taken up coffee drinking this summer.
Maddie's millionth terrarium. He has an obsession with them.  He buys all of the plants and makes them.  

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Let's Be Serious: Instant Pot Talk

What is this?  Two posts in one week?  I actually have more planned.  I promise I'm not sick. Ha.  Anyway, I wanted to talk to about this lovely invention called the Instant Pot.

I first heard about the Instant Pot from a blogger. I honestly don't remember which one.  She recommended it because it was awesome apparently. I was really skeptical at first.  I mean this cooker has a cult following.  People take this thing to the park to prepare meals.  Some people hoard them like cats.  I was also a bit skeptical because it's a pressure cooker and I do recall the time ours exploded and beans were everywhere.  In fact, there are still beans under the paint on the ceiling.

And if I'm honest here, I didn't even buy this thing.  Erik did because he was ashamed of our old crockpot.  He didn't want to take it to school when we needed it for movie night.  It took a bit of learning to figure out how to use it, but it's so worth it!  I use my Instant Pot at least twice a week.  I use it for rice, chicken, soups, anything really.  I actually made a one pot meatloaf and mashed potatoes that the kids loved.  I can make pulled pork that falls apart in an hour.  The meat is never ever dry.  Cleanup is simple.  I just put the stainless steel pot in the dishwasher.  The only thing I can say that's bad about the Instant Pot is that its not the best at slow cooking.  I think the crockpot is much better suited for that even if it is 16 years old and the handles are broken off.  

I highly recommend this thing.  It makes meal prep so easy and so fast.  Oh and there are tons of recipes out there you can try! 

Monday, July 17, 2017

And why not?

For a long time this post has haunted me. The reason for that is that my own father thinks I'm a horrible person.  He's disowned me and he's disowned his grandchildren. These three amazing boys...he wants to have nothing to do with them.  He even forgot JoJo's birthday on the fifth of July.  And mostly I'm just so sick and tired of always making the right choices and have them thrown in my face.  

So I guess this post is about letting go.  Just letting it all go because I can't feel bad anymore.  I'm raising these children with Erik.  He's the guy I've been with faithfully for 21 years.   

The kids are pretty great despite the fighting.  They fight...ALL. OF. THE. TIME.  They drive me nuts and that's okay.  I know this will be fleeting.  It will be gone so soon.  And I'm embracing that.  I'm embracing every minute of them and their damn fighting.  

PS...my besties will read this post and they will give me all of the support I need because they love us unconditionally.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Happy 4th of July

Just popping in with a few pics of the boys.  We aren't doing much today as Erik is working.  It really takes the joy out of the holidays..ha.  Anyhow, I just took a few pictures of the boys and thought I'd share.

 This photo took a lot of yelling and screaming on my part.  They look much sweeter than they actually are.

Happy 4th!  Hope you are having a fun and safe time with your family and friends!

Friday, June 2, 2017

Summer Goals

Hey everyone!  Every year, I post my summer goals on here...and every year a lot of them are never met.  So instead of posting how I'm going to organize the house head to toe, I'm going to post more realistic goals.  Let's face it, the only way this house is going to get organized top to bottom is if house fairies come along and do it...Ha.

*Swim 1 mile a day.  This is totally a reachable goal.  I've been swimming at least 1/2 to 6 tenths of mile for the last month after school.  I don't think swimming a mile is too far of a stretch, considering how I used to swim a mile a day growing up.  The boys are swimming laps with me as well.  It's become our thing for the summer.  We are still old fashioned counting laps with an abacus like my grandmother and I did.

*Not let my hair turn green...this is serious.  Hopefully with a salt water pool this won't happen.  I've got this concoction here that should help...I'll let you know.

*Go on a huge hike.  Erik and I watched A Walk in The Woods with Robert Redford and Nick Nolte a few months ago.  It's a hilarious movie as they try and conquer the Appalachian Trail.  We researched and found a 21 mile loop here and are going to try and take the dogs and the kids on this adventure this summer.

*Organize the garage...I know, I started this post with not organizing stuff.  We did remodel the kitchen and office so I sort of need to do this.  Really.  I love my new kitchen.

*Make crafty stuff.  I recently caught on to the trend of using a Traveler's Notebook to document stuff.  I didn't actually pick a Traveler's Journal, but I picked this journal.   I LOVE IT!!!  It's small and I can take it anywhere. Here's a page I made.

*Grill like crazy...Erik and I love to BBQ and come up with great food recipes.  This summer we hope to build an in ground BBQ pit. 

*Organize my Donor's Choose Project...that's a biggie.  I've had no math manipulatives for two years in a row.  So, I need to sit down and get that done.  Hopefully, keep your fingers crossed I won't be changed grade levels again.  They changed me to 1st grade only...and I had to move classrooms for the sixth time in the last two years. Keep your fingers crossed for me.

*Have fun!  I want to have a great summer with the kids.  My oldest will be in high school this next school year.  Raising a teenager is everything people warn you about.  So, I'm trying to hold onto my sanity with this kid.  I just want to have fun a lot together as a family.  

So there you have it.  It's just a simple list.  Lot's of fun.  Lot's of family time.  

Have a great day!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

A Life Well Crafted

I think this post has been coming for sometime.  I still take pictures.  I still live this wonderful life and all I can say to myself at the end of the day is I live this well crafted life.  (I'm aware that was a run on sentence.). Bad news..I haven't actually made anything crafty.  I'm also not sure how many of you actually follow this blog anymore.  I'm okay with that because it has been five months since my last post.

I can't explain my absence other than I have been so busy.  I've not made time for this blog.  And I really should.  At the end of the day, this blog is a reflection of us and our life.  It is a channel for my family to hear my voice and know what's going on.

There have been so many times I take pictures of the kids and I can't stop myself from thinking how I live this well crafted life.  Erik and I have done everything in our power to make sure the kids know that.  We are on the brink of having high school student.  That's a leap of faith.  I can only trust that we've done a good job.

And so I guess, I'm just going to share some pictures today...I can't promise I will be crafty.  I can't promise I'm gonna post every other day.  I can only promise to be me. To be the busy me that has lots of stuff going on.  If you want to stick around for that, that's great.  Just know that if I'm not on here right away, it's because I'm busy living this life...this well crafted life.  The one in the real world.


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