12.30.2014

Looking to 2015

I like the idea of a new year. It's a fresh start (even if it's only in my head) to do things you want to do.

My goals this year are of a variety. My mind frame has changed since last year. I'm working toward a different goal than I was 365 days ago.

So with out anymore blah blahing here is what I'm focusing on in 2015


Soaking it in. I want to take in every little thing. I want to remember how G's nose scrunches up when he fake laughs at a joke he doesn't get. I want to remember it all. God willing we will have another child at some point and so I want to get all of these special moments burned in my brain of just Grayson.



Write in a happiness journal. I bought a 5 year happiness journal a long time ago. It sits in my drawer untouched. So I want to write every night before bed. I have moved it to my bed side table and put a cute pen with it. I'm going to write one memory or thought of happiness.


Get healthy and fit. I'm still lugging around some baby weight. I will get it off this year. I will work out not just to lose weight but because when I do it consistently I feel better, I'm happier, I sleep better it's just good all around


Think before I speak. Full disclosure here I can snap. Like I get upset, hurt, mad and bam I snap right back and it can be ugly. Mostly my poor husband gets the wrath of this and so I'm going to think before I speak.



Go to Church at least twice a month. Listen I applaud people who go every week. But my Husband works every weekend and some days it's just not in the cards. I have not been to church in a long long time and I want to go back. I stopped going because we got a new pastor and I didn't feel welcomed at church when she was there. In November we were at a craft show when my Mom started talking to an old friend and one thing led to another and we were introduced to the new pastor at our church. I clicked with her and so we are making our way back to church.


Create magic for Grayson. I want to have special magical moments for him. And listen he is (almost)2 so magic to him is a day of playdoh so I'm going to get creative and magical with him at least twice a month. I want special Mommy Grayson moments.


Pay off debt. This is a huge focus for us in 2015. I feel like we are so focused and determined. This plan of Dave Ramsey's has changed the way we think about money in just 2 short months and it has changed our relationship. I feel like we communicate more and better and in a kinder way. We are finally on the same page and it's amazing!

So please share!! I love other peoples goals!

2014- A Re-Cap

There are less than 24 hours left in 2014? I mean how is that possible?


This year was full of ups and downs but it was really a wonderful year


January
We changed daycares and watched our sweet little boy flourish at his new home away from home.

 
February
We celebrated Valentines day and survived some pretty cold days, and had a few birthday parties. 











March
My fat boy turned 1!!!! We celebrated with a party (that I never blogged about oooops!) We also had a great time just watching this little man grow

 




April
Birthdays,Art Shows and Easter (Oh MY!)









May
Wedding fun and spring weather! We ate ice cream and played outside

 
 




June
We celebrated my birthday and Father's Day Oh yeah and my husband went and bought a 4-wheeler on a whim.
 
 

July 
Was a whirlwind and we made huge strides with our Spring to-do list. 

August
We celebrate 5 years of marriage with a trip to Clevland. Fell in love with the city and re-connected





September
Grayson moved up to the Toddler Room and my Libby girl turned 9!!!!!


October 
We survived the wedding and celebrated Michael's Birthday. We trick or treated and had turtle power


November
We gave thanks and just spend time with family 



December
I learned how being a parent is gift watching this holiday season through my sweet boys eyes.




Here is to 2015!!!

12.19.2014

Friday Favorites-Traditions

Friday Favorites and this list includes all of my favorite holiday traditions and products!!! Happy Holidays and don't forget to link up with Andrea for today!



One
Cookie Exchange
We did this this two weekends ago and I love it. The kids really get into decorating and it's nice to only have to make one or two kinds of cookies but get 6 different to take home. Plus I'm a sucker for good memories and anytime we are with family that is what happens.





Two
Two Christmas'
Okay so this started when my niece was born but we do Christmas with my brother and his family the Sunday before Christmas. This gives us a ton of time with them and it is just more relaxed. Plus we have so much yummy food. I love this time with them and the kids getting there gifts and enjoying them because they don't have to rush to the next place is the highlight for me


Three
Just the 3 of us. 
Once we had Grayson we decided to do Christmas morning at our house and then head to my parents for gifts and brunch. I love that time in the morning just the 3 of us. We cook Cinnamon rolls, make coffee and open gifts. We still get to my parents around 8:30(because my kid thinks sleeping in is 6) and enjoy another round of presents there but those few hours just us has always been a favorite of mine. 


Four
Christmas Eve
This is the big night with my Mom's side of the family. We head to my Aunt's house exchange gifts then head to my Uncles house for a huge party. There is so much food and family it makes my heart happy. Plus this is when my Mama makes her pizza bread and I overeat until I can't walk. 


Five
Christmas Brunch
We do brunch and it's my favorite. Eggs, french toast, Cinnamon rolls, donut, cheesy potatoes, sausage, bacon, toast, you name it we have it. This time is so special for me because me and dad usually run it and do most of the cooking. It's memories I have of being a young girl and cooking with my dad. I'm excited to share all of this with Grayson.



Some other tradition worth mentioning
We always always always watch It's a Wonderful Life while wrapping presents
I have at least one glass of egg nog during the season
We get new jimmy jams for Christmas morning 
Santa gives one gift in our house and it is usually the bigger gift and not wrapped
We do stockings but fun little things like socks and crayons plus a snack
We give an ornament every year
Riley (our black lab) gets gifts too
We open gifts by age youngest to oldest I can't imagine doing it any other way
Setting out cookies for Santa is a must and we do reindeer food too (oatmeal and glitter)
Yes we do the Elf but Elf light this year as in he just moves around no funky business yet


Now two of my favorite Candles that Scream CHRISTMAS!!!!

Bath and Body works candles just make me happy
Fresh Balsam 3-Wick Candle - Home Fragrance 1037181 - Bath & Body Works
Fresh Balsam
I love this one since we have an artificial tree it still brings the "christmas" smell to my house!
 Winter Candy Apple 3-Wick Candle - Home Fragrance 1037181 - Bath & Body Works

Winter Candy Apple
This one is really a winter scent for me and I use it until March.


They are on sale for $12 so stock up!





 

12.09.2014

Our first month Progress

So it's been one month and I'm so proud of where we are in our debt journey.


I laid it all out here and if I'm being honest that post was hard to write.

I didn't know how people would react. But I really just wanted to have a way to check in, keep myself accountable and be able to look back and say look at what we did!



So just a quick refresh we are in Baby Step#1 and well we are doing great.

We have saved $650.00 towards our $1,000.00 goal.Over half way there!!!!


I'm beyond excited.

This month though was not without challenges. We had a car repair that came up and had to be done, as in Michael had no heat in his car and well it's winter here! Thankfully my company owns a repair shop so we got it done for just the cost of labor. Now old us would have charged that baby and made plans to pay it off over the next x amount of months. This time? We used out emergency fund. We were well over $750 in our Emergency Fund but chose to use that cash to pay for the repair. I have to tell you it felt good to pay cash.


We have also been sticking to the envelope system and doing a budget for the month. Our weekly budget meetings have turned into a mini date night (oh the things that get you excited once you have kids lol) we get a drink sit at the table and go over numbers. This is how we run things

On the 20th the month before we finalize our budget for the next month. Meaning we look at the Calender see what birthday's are coming up,events we have you know things that will cost extra money. Then we start our budget. We have a set amount for our monthly income and we end up with our zero based budget. Then I go through and put the weekly amounts for each item on the envelope.

Thursday night we sit down and go through what cash we will be pulling out of the bank the next day and then Friday night we distribute to envelopes and count up our Emergency Fund.

We are still on track to complete our Emergency Fund by December 31st and Start paying on our debt in January.

I have to say the biggest pay off for me in this journey has been the feeling of peace I have. I will be honest I used to stress about money. It would affect me on a daily basis. Now I feel so at ease. We have a plan. We were shopping for Papa Joe's birthday and Michael was like "here we go spending money" and I reminded him it was fine we had budgeted for it. It was a nice feeling. And yes using that Emergency Fund was a bummer but that is what it's there for.

This is a journey and every journey has set backs.

12.08.2014

The Weekend-Cookie Exchange

This weekend is what holidays are made of.

It was amazing and I had the best time, plus spending all of that time with my boys makes me beyond happy.


Friday it was grocery shopping (which I will NOT be doing on Friday's anymore. It was awful I'm switching to Monday's), take out and movie watching.


Saturday- Grayson and I got up and then once we finished breakfast we went right to the kitchen to make cookies. We had our cookie exchange the next day so I had 6 dozen to make. I ended up making 8 so that we had a  few dozen for our house. We made M&M cookies. Grayson was so good and after 2 hours in the kitchen,making 8 dozen cookies, eating a few handfuls of M&M's, eating a cookie and getting all the dishes done we relaxed until lunch time.

Once G ate and went down for his nap I ate really quick showered and got ready for the Michael's work party that night.

They have it at this awesome restaurant and it is decorated so beautifully for the holidays. We got our family picture taken and the good was ahhhhhmazing. Then it was Santa time and well my kids thinks Santa is out to get him or something. However after we were back at our table and the present was open (a book) he kept saying "Santa book". He loves the book just not the jolly old head elf himself.


Sunday- We went to my mom's for our cookie exchange. We decorate the cut outs there with all the kids and my boy did such a good job. He only ate one cookie and decorated about a dozen. He loved every second of it and then once he was done was in the living room rough housing with the boys. Let me just say my boy can hold his own. We got home and it was lunch and naps for everyone. Once we were all awake and Michael was home we decorated the tree while watching our Bills lose horribly. Blah but decorating was fun.


This week I'm going to finish my wrapping make a few more cookies and just enjoy. I loved baking with my sweet boy and I love having him in the kitchen with me. Plus I'm trying to make the effort to soak up with moments because if this year has taught me anything it's that time flies by.

Happy Monday!

12.03.2014

December Goals

First thing's first my November Progress


1- Have a date night with Michael.- We don't go out to dinner just the two of us very often so I'm hoping that we can venture out for an early dinner the day before Thanksgiving. -Done and Done!!! We went to the gun range and then out to dinner at Olive Garden then home for ice cream and a movie perfection!

2- Bake Pies- I love baking and I love making pies. This one is kind of a give in because I'm in charge of dessert for Thanksgiving but I'm still working on what ones to make- I made a chocolate and lemon meringue pie!!!

 3- Get Grayson's picture taken for our Christmas card. I always take this myself. I plan on getting this done this weekend- Got this done and love it! I will be doing a whole post on our cards since most people have already received them!!!

4- Start T-25. I'm hoping to start this program this weekend and keep it going 5 days a week all month. -Fail just plain fail

5-Send out my Christmas Cards- I like them to go in the mail the day after Thanksgiving that way people have all month to enjoy them!-They went into the mail box the Tuesday before Thanksgiving so that most people had them the day after!

6- Start and Finish Christmas shopping! I want it done early this year so that I can just enjoy my family during the holiday times-Done except for gift cards which will be done this week!

7- Start a new family tradition for Thanksgiving.- We have lots of tradition most are from my childhood so I would like to start one for out little family-We did this we are decorating for Christmas on Thanksgiving morning and to be honest I love it. We don't host Thanksgiving so it's nice to get it done and come home stuffed with Turkey to a cozy Christmas house




Now onto December

1- Wrap all my presents......I would like this done within the next week. My plan is to wrap as they come in.

2-Get G's picture taken with Santa! I'm not sure if we will venture to the mall or just take one with the Santa at the work party but I'm thinking there will be tears

3- Make Christmas cookies

4- Buy Christmas Ornaments for 2014

5- Move the Elf on the Shelf every night

6-Watch Christmas movies!


It's the Happiest season of all!

12.02.2014

Thanksgiving-2014

I'm breaking my week long break from the blog to talk about our mini-Thanksgiving vacation.

It was glorious

Wednesday I left work an hour early headed to Home Goods and snagged a few little Christmas decorations. Then I headed to pick up my sweet boy from daycare. He was still sleeping, must have been the big Thanksgiving feast they had that day.

Then my Mom came and picked him up for an overnight. Then it was date night for me and the hubby. We don't get to go out just the 2 of us very often but when we do we enjoy every second. It was nice one on one time. We went to the gun range and shot a couple rounds and then went to dinner at the Olive Garden. I stuffed myself so full but I enjoyed every bite. Then on the way home we stopped and got ice cream and headed home for a movie and some cuddles. We were out by 10:30.


Thursday we got up I made breakfast, Michael got down the Christmas decorations and out tree. Once we finished eating we got our house all decorated and cleaned. Then we headed to see our boy and have Thanksgiving at my Aunt's house. The food was amazing. Now every year I go black Friday shopping. I even did it when I was pregnant. However this year we decided to enjoy shopping from the comforts of our very own home and I have to say I loved it. I got great deals and am done shopping except for gift cards!


Friday we had a birthday party to go to complete with a hot dog bar.
Saturday my Mom got Grayson for a few hours to go to the Light Festival Kids Workshops. He decorated a cookie, made an ornament, got is face painted, and colored. Then he came home napped I cleaned and napped and once Michael got home we headed out for some grocery shopping and pizza.

Sunday Grayson woke up with pink eye. So to Urgent care we went and once we picked up our drops it was home for lunch and naps all around. The rest of the night we just hung out. I double checked my Christmas list and started to get organized.

Monday came too quick, but we enjoyed our family time together.