Tuesday, July 31, 2012

"Crotcheting in Vegas" Part 2

Well, hello there, my loveys!
How are you on this grand Tuesday?
Me? I'm awesome thank you very much:)
I'm very happy for someone right now.

Do you remember way back when I started blogging and I would feature
"Talented Women"?
One of those posts was about my extraordinary niece in Las Vegas.

Well, since then *Ro* has opened her etsy shop {just last week} and I am so very proud of her!

It's called
and she creates some pretty neat crotchet-y items:)
Like these:

I know I'm a tad bit, just a little, biased, but I think they are wonderful!

I asked her to tell us a little bit about herself, so here she is:

I'm a SAHM mom of 4 -
Keila - 14,
Jason - 13,
and M&M (2 & 1).

I've been crocheting since I was 10, but never really started selling anything until about a year ago.
I'm the girl that always gives handmade gifts (sorry!).
I think the time I spend on making something is far more thoughtful than buying a gift card.

I finally decided to take a stab at etsy, and I’m glad I did.
I have been busy busy busy creating things daily, and working on other projects and ideas.
My goal is to finish a project EVERYDAY.
I love to crochet!!! I love the challenge of coming up with my own pattern, or following a difficult pattern - ESPECIALLY when the end result looks JUST LIKE the picture on the pattern! haha!

So check it out - ROVIsBox.
I don't really have a theme to my work –
I just try to make something I would like for myself or my kids, and hopefully others like it, too :)

*Ro* is just starting out her shop and has just a few things in her shop.  She can make pretty much anything, though:)  So, made-to-order is possible, ladies!
Give her some etsy shop love, k?
Have a fabulous rest of the day!

Monday, July 30, 2012

My First Mani Monday:)

What do you think?
Did I do good?

My sweet friend treated me to a mani/pedi yesterday.
It was a much needed girl time and I was thrilled to get away for a few hours.
We went to get our manicures and pedicures done and then we went off to Michael's.
{I made a bunch of bracelets after for a swap... Can't wait to show you my craftiness!}

It was nice 2 hours away...although we forgot our phones at home, so we felt kinda guilty that the husbands couldn't get a hold of us.

This is my first time linking up with
and I don't know why, but I was pretty excited to join in.
I've been wanting to for, like, ever!

Happy Monday Loveys!

Friday, July 27, 2012

spilling over, actually...

It's not just running over, it's spilling all over the place!

Let's pretend we're having a nice cup of something...anything you like, k?
Okay...ready? Go!

Since we're pretending that we're sitting having a cup of coffee (tea, juice...Dr. Pepper?), let's pretend we're at a wonderful little cafe.

And can I tell you something?
You look so very pretty today.
{you're welcome}

So, let me tell you something.
I am beyond blessed right now.
Right inside this little heart of mine, I feel very loved.
By who, you ask?

Well, if you are here right now, having coffee with me in our imaginary cafe, and "listening" to me,
then it's pretty easy to figure out, don'tcha think?
You are making my heart full this week.
It's filled to the brim and spilling all over because
you are here
you are reading my words
you are checking up on me
you are praying for me
you are giving me words of wisdom
you are giving me a listening ear

Enjoy that cup of whatever you are drinking
and know that you are appreciated.
Please go see all the people linking up over at Alissa's today. 
Each and every one of them will have a little more to fill your cup.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

It's Time...

...I didn't want to go to college.
I went to college much later in life {after kids were born} and did really well, but
we moved and I couldn't get classes.
...I'm ready to go back.
I've applied to the fall semester at the local community college.
{I only have a couple of classes to take to transfer to a four-year.}
I'm also applying for financial aid and crossing my fingers that I get a little help.
I'm also registering on August 1.  Please pray I can get at least one class.
__ __
I was a wifey, mommy, and working out of the home with a 4.0 GPA.
I'm adding blogger and college student {with honors} to the mix.
{Yes, you read right...with honors.  I've done it before, I can do it again.}
__ __
...I didn't think I could do it all.
...I know I can.
__ __

How about you?

What did you do
that you know you can do {and will do}

~ ~

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

If you *ever* wanted to get me somethin'...

If I don't tell you, how would you know, right?
So, no...don't worry...I'm not asking you to buy me anything
{unless you were so inclined to do so - ha! I'm cracking myself up right now...}
but I've been wanting a little bookish-ness around me lately.
So I went "shopping" on pinterest
look. what. I. found!!!

1. So, I probably wouldn't "wear" this, but I was thinking it would look cool with a bunch of them strung over a bookcase, right?
Source: etsy.com via Betty on Pinterest

2.  This bag is so me.  Period.

3. Again, I may use this once...but cute as a decorating item, right?

4.  Again, very me.  I'd drink coffee, tea...juice?...in this all the time.

5. It's an IPAD CASE for the imaginary ipad I have! Cool, huh?

So now you know.
{{smiling wider}}

Monday, July 23, 2012

It's time...

♥~Good Morning:
I'm back and as I promised, I did some soul-searching last week.  There were a lot of dead ends, but on Friday night the answer was given to me.
My husband helped me see the light - and he said what I needed to hear.  Maybe not what I wanted to hear, but those three words, "it's time, baby" was what counted.
It's time to forgive.
It's time to have peace.
I don't exactly know how I'm going to go about it, but I have to do this. 
I want to see what will happen and maybe, just maybe, the real me will be there when it's all over.

I do know this, though:

Yes, I will accept it because it's part of who I am.  The only thing is:
I'm done with making it define me.  I'm also done with bringing my writing down on here and being such a downer.

From here on out, I'll do what I have to do to get where I have to be.  And...I may have to do it privately.

This week as I was figuring it all out, I also re-read old posts. 
I like the inspiring, encouraging posts because they were written for you.
But also...those posts...they were kinda for me, too.
So I'm going back to that, okay?
For you and me.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

A Seed on Sunday

With just a little faith, I'll move mountains.
He said so.

Friday, July 20, 2012

This is How SHE Does It: Woman of Faith

Hi Loveys,
I have to end this little series,
with the woman who inspires me to write every Friday for our coffee dates.
Alissa is so full of life and her smile reminds me that she has a huge believing heart.
What I love about her is that she's genuine - what you see is what you get...
I asked her to end this week with words on Faith.
Take it away, Alissa, for

Woman of Faith

To all of you who stuck around this week:
Thank you!
I'll be back Monday full-force!
~ Nay ~
ps:  Did you miss some of the posts this week?  Not to worry.  Nay to the rescue! (See this, this, this, and this post!)

Hi friends, my name is Alissa and I have blog over at Rags to Stitches. I'm so excited to be here sharing with you today. Although, I feel completely unworthy to be even remotely sharing with you how to live a faith-filled life. I'm not really sure that I'm the expert on this, but I'm praying that as I write God will put the right words down on this virtual journal and that your hearts might leave here today feeling a little more encouraged.
I'm a wife of one amazing man, a mommy to two littles, and I'm a full-time work-at-home mommy. When I say that, I mean that on top of the wonderful time I get to spend building a community with people online, I spend most of my days chasing after my kids, picking up toys, doing dishes, feeding children (seriously, why are they always hungry or thirsty? haha), doing laundry, and being all that I can to everyone else in my home. I'm sure many of you know exactly what I'm talking about. Even if you don't have kiddos yet, you probably work full-time outside of your home, come home, and do many of the things I listed above and then fall into your bed at night and wonder where your whole day went.
For a long time I felt as though I was ending my day on this exhausted note where I was both physically and emotionally drained. It got to the point where I felt overwhelmed by the day to day tasks and by the time my husband walked in the door from work I just wanted to crawl in a closet somewhere and be left alone. What I realized was a key element was missing from my day. And the more days it was missing the farther into this rut I fell.
See being a woman of faith is more than just praying here and there and attending church on Sundays. It needs to be a priority in your life. When I began starting and ending my day with my Heavenly Father I began to notice a huge difference in my day.
I wasn't so emotionally drained.
My heart was encouraged.
In turn I became a better wife and mom and my relationship with my husband changed for the better.
I know you're probably wondering how you fit one more thing on your plate, but let me tell you Jesus will lighten your daily load.
I thought I'd let you in on a few secrets of my day.
Start your day in prayer, asking God to help you make a difference in someone else's life.
Get into the Word. It doesn't need to be an in-depth Bible Study, just something that get's you thinking about ways you can allow God to transform your life. Check out She Reads Truth, they've got some great Bible studies going on.
When you jump on the phone with a friend, ask them what God's doing in their lives. There's nothing that get's me more excited about God then hearing what he's doing in other peoples lives.
Talk to God throughout the day.
Pray with your husband and kids at night before bed. Thank God for all the little blessings from your day.
Trust me when I say that I'm not perfect and no, I don't do this everyday, but I will tell you that there's a difference in my heart when I do.
I'd love to hear about you. How do you bring God into your daily life?

Thursday, July 19, 2012

This is How SHE Does It: Living it Healthy

It's Day 4 of this week's series
and joining us today is the wonderful Kristen, one of my blog besties!
Who do I ask when I have health questions? How about motivation? Or maybe a little pep talk on self-image?
Always, always, ALWAYS Kristen.
She's my go-to person for pretty much everything and I love her for it.
And her heart?  Oh, it goes for miles with the love she gives me and this here blog.
Okay, okay...I know you want to hear me ramble...so her she is!

Living it Healthy
~ Nay ~

Well hello!  For those of you I haven't had the chance to meet yet, I'm Kristen, and I blog over at TRL
where I love to talk about my life, food, and how to live an overall healthier, happier life.

When Nay asked me to crash her blog for a day and tell you "How I do it" in regards to health and wellness, my head started reeling with possibility.  I could tell you about how to plan your workouts.  How to make healthy cooking easier.  I could tell you about how you should be exercising when Flo is in town.  There were so many ideas in that noggin of mine.  So I decided to go stalk read through a few blogs I knew talked about their struggles with health, fitness, diet, etc and see what they were talking about.  It turns out, what so many people are struggling with right now is motivation.  And a light bulb turned on inside of my head, because I have a plan for this!  And if it works for me, it can work for you, too.  I, as it happens, am the queen of making excuses.

So here's how I do it...

I break "motivation" down into 3 different categories.  The first is motivation.  Next is drive, and last is fuel.  Don't worry, I'm going to explain.  I won't leave you hanging.

1)  Motivation:  For me, this is the long-term, nebulous goal that I am working towards.  My personal goal is this: I want to be as fit and healthy as possible, so that when the time comes to have children, I can be healthy and active for them.  As you can see, this goal meets none of the "SMART" criteria you're always hearing about.  It's more of an ideal.  But it's authentic for me, and that's what I'm really after.  A description of where I really want to be, at a future date more than a year from now.

2)  Drive:  Having a long term goal is great, but these goals are usually too big to keep you motivated.  It's easy to get off track, to make your big goal smaller, or to tell yourself it just isn't meant to be.  Your drive is a series of short term goals that drive you towards your long term goal.  Since my goal is to be as fit, healthy, and active as possible, I set short term goals that meet that objective.  For example, I have run a couple of 5k races so far, completed a 34 mile organized bike ride, and am in the process of completing a 90 day fitness challenge with a Team Beachbody coach.  All of these events give me start and end dates to work from, and that keeps me focused on progress.  But these goals can only drive you so far, unless you have the proper fuel for the engine.

3)  Fuel:  We aren't talking about food here, although these tips are easily applied to dietary habits as they are exercise.  What we are talking about are the attitudes and habits that you adopt that help you to ensure you meet your short-term goals.  This is the most personal part of motivation, because we have different personalities.  But for me, the only thing that gets me working out regularly is commitment.  I make a series of commitments to myself, as well as to others, to complete the goals that I set.  I allow myself to be held accountable to that, and I am reminded that my word is only good if I consistently live up to it, even if the only person I made a commitment to is myself.  For you, maybe it isn't commitment.  Maybe what is going to fuel your workout is developing a strict routine each day that builds in your goal.  Maybe it is a competitive drive to constantly better yourself.  This is really the hardest part.  So I would suggest that if you aren't sure what is going to get you off of the couch and moving in the direction of your goals, you pick commitment and accountability to a friend or loved one.  If you want to lose weight, but have a hard time with food, plan out all of your food in advance and have it prepped.  Then TELL your friend what you are going to eat over the course of the day/week/whatever, and when you are going to eat it.  At the end of the day/week, tell them if you did what you said you were going to do.  How do you think you would do if you knew that people were going to check in with you about your results?

So there you lovely ladies have it.  My well-tested, highly effective map to consistent motivation.  I would love to hear from you if you choose to try any of these tips, you can always visit my blog to learn more about my journey, or you can send me an email, and I would be happy to help you in any way that I can.  Thank you so much for reading on past the words "guest post" in the title today, and I can't wait to hear from you.  Many thanks to Nay for letting me hijack her bloggy!
ps:  Check out the last installments of this series with
Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday's posts.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

This is How SHE Does It: What I Didn't Expect {SAHM}

 So what are you thinking of
so far?
{If you've missed the last two installments, look here and here}
 I am loving it so far.
Some of my fave bloggers all week?!  Yes!
And this bloggin' mama is no exception.
If you want a strong supporter and someone who will tell it like it is, look no further.
Megan is the girl you want in your corner - she's fierce and that's what I love about her and her blog.

I can't say it enough how SAHM-cool she is, so that's why she's here...
What I didn't expect {SAHM}
~ Nay ~

Pinned Image
Right? Pinterest via Roseann Lombardo via yourdailyquotes
 Years ago, I thought I knew what being a stay at home mom would be like.  I had this preconceived notion that it was play dates and martinis.  I will freely admit that I was under the impression that stay at home moms were so 1950s.  Didn't my mother and her friends burn their bras so I could be a working mom?  These are the 2000s, and I'm very able and capable and it's my right to "have it all", nay "do it all".  Or so I thought. The reality is that being a "home economist", "domestic diva", or the "CEO of a family", is a job that is so incredibly hard it rarely gets its due.  Most of us are viewed as "non working", as if changing diapers, breastfeeding, or picking up the same damn toys every hour on the hour is a cake walk. I have learned these last 5 years, that being a stay at home mom has it's perks, it's blessings, and it's rewards.  However it's not at all what I expected.
Pinned Image
Yes! Now you have it all... Pinterest via Lorrine Blanchet via googleglassproject
Here is what I now know about the hardest job I never interviewed for. There are no bon-bons, martinis, or personal trainers.  There are however, soggy goldfish crackers, half full juice boxes, and snot on your sleeve.  SAHMotherhood is not glamorous, unless you are famous and/or independently wealthy.  Unless you have an entourage of "people" who help you get ready for the day, you are most likely never ready for the day.  And by "people" I don't mean the short people running around like a pack of wild dogs, trying to break the world record of how many times "mom" or "mommy" can be uttered in a minute.   
Funny Family Ecard: Don't worry sweetie. Mommy is here. I'm just wearing make up.
My kids always freak when my eyebrows are done! someecards
With the glamour gone you will find your uniform.  Yoga pants and Uggs, Jeans and Toms, sweats and Nike's.  Whatever.  Easy becomes the fashion trend you adopt, because really why waste a great ensemble on 2 kids under 3 who will most likely drool, vomit, or grab your white pant leg with Cheeto hands.  If I were to offer advice here I would say shoot for yoga pants and a tank top.  That way you will look like you actually hit the gym before you hit the grocery store.  This way all the people in Target will think that your hair is greasy from working out, and not from skipping another shower because your toddler started screaming as the water started running.
There is always tomorrow.  This is a motto my friend Krysten's grandma told her.  SAHMotherhood means that there is always tomorrow, so if you are anything like me, you live in a constant mode of procrastination.  I can always start (insert housework chore here) tomorrow.  That's why my laundry looks like a mountain range, my base boards look like they were painted to be brown, and that gourmet dinner I pinned, is literally going on the back burner.  As in, I'll just get to that tomorrow.  Tomorrow being when I'm out of mac and cheese, the kids are out of pjs or we're hosting a birthday party at our house. Cooking is optional.  Before I became a SAHM, I really thought that I'd be the mom that made everything from scratch, daily.  Pancakes for breakfast, some kind of vegetable dish for lunch, and an award winning dinner.  Not so much.  For starters, breakfast in our house is a term used very loosely.  Sure, I have been known to bake some cinnamon rolls a morning or two (always from the can), or whip up some chocolate chip pancakes.  Why not?  But I have been also known to toast some french toast sticks, open some string cheese, and on some desperate mornings dole out Oreos.  Because some mornings are harder than others, sometimes lunch is chips and Capri Suns, and sometimes dinners are grilled cheese sandwiches. Cooking is also redefined.  If you have to microwave it, use a pan, or boil something, you my dear have cooked.  Remember that, repeat it, write it and post it on the fridge.  Grilled cheese involves cooking, chicken nuggets require a microwave, and pop tarts are sold next to the breakfast cereal, making them a completely acceptable breakfast food. Someone is going to insult you.  Be ready.  There will be someone who will say, to your face (yes, to your face) that you are "just" a SAHM.  Don't take offence.  Ok, take offence.  They likely have no idea what you do all day.  There will also be someone, famous or otherwise, who will think they know everything there is to know about (insert mothering speciality here), and it will make you feel like a bad mom.  Someone else will talk about how you don't really work, because you don't leave the house in order to clock in and out.  Fine.  Whatever.  Ask them nicely if you can drop your kids off for 24-48 hours.  Then see what they think about your "just" a SAHM-ness. SAHMs don't clock in and out because they are on the clock 24/7.  Like a doctor without the paycheck or the good drugs.  When you stay home with your kids, you are at their disposal.  Whether you like it or not.  It's a 24 hour round the clock job that requires you to be alert, patient, kind, motivated, and perky.  Although I never manage to be all those things at once.
Pinned Image
Yep, 24/7 Pinterest via Nipajaai Naulneda via .someecards
Find success in the small things.  If I'm being honest I will tell you that 6 months into being a SAHM I felt like a failure.  I was home all day, with just one child and most days I didn't even shower.  I felt like there weren't enough hours in the day.  Slowly I realized that the little successes of the day, motivated me for the bigger ones to follow.  For example my kids ate veggies today.  A meal was actually cooked on Tuesday.  A load of laundry got washed and dried on Thursday.  Sometimes happy kids, who ate 3 squares, who were on their best behavior at Target (while sipping on ICEEs), and who are now quietly playing while the Fresh Beat Band sings in the background is a MAJOR SUCCESS.  The laundry will be there, the dishes can wait, and I have yet to inspect a baseboard at another moms house yet. 
Pinned Image
Not just SAHMs, but working ones too! Pinterest via Reita Prey via goo.gl
I'm not the expert on being a SAHM.  I'm just one of many, who tries to navigate my way through the ups and downs of a demanding job, with a demanding schedule, and 2 very demanding bosses.  Maybe I have a problem with priorities, some may say I'm lazy.  This is just a little look into what I have discovered doing the hardest job that requires no license, no application, prerequisites, or an interview.  Thank God.  Otherwise, I would have never gotten this job in the first place!
PS: I have no idea what it's like to be a working mom.
I've worked part time in the past and I'm horrible at it.
If you are a working mom, your job is harder than mine.
Don't let anyone tell you any different.
I can barely get my kid to school on time, and usually I'm in my pjs.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

This is How SHE Does It: I'm a Working Momma

Welcome back to this week's series
I hope you are enjoying it.  You can see yesterday's post here.

Today I'm happy to have Summer here to share her experience on being a Working Mom.
She always seems to have everything put together in just the right way.
I had the pleasure of meeting her at the bloggy conference she arranged back in June.
She is as warm and inviting in person as she is on her blog.

So without further ado:
I'm a Working Momma
~ Nay ~
My name is Summer and I am the all over the place mama behind Made By Munchie's Mama. I work, I wife, I mama and occasionally I am just Summer. I have 2 little boys: Munchie who is almost 3 aka Gavin and Dylie Bear who is 1 years old aka Dylan.  

My hubby and I are just like every other couple: struggling to find the work, parent, spouse balance and taking things one day at a time.  On my blog you will find me writing about fights I have with my hubby, mama guilt, what I wear on Wednesdays, and stuff they don't tell you about parenthood before you get pregnant.  I also throw a good ole' tutorial around every now and then.  Stop by and say holla sometime.

So I am a mom and I work, not sure that qualifies me as an expert at being a working mom, but I am going to tell you a little bit about how I try my best to keep it all together.  I could tell you about my weekly schedule, but we would be here all day.  So, I'll just give you the summary.

I work Tuesday-Friday
Gavin has speech and occupational therapy 3 times a week
I teach the 12-13 year old young women at church on Sundays and
 we have an activity on Wednesday nights
I blog...obviously
I have an online shop
I choreograph for Professional dance teams
I am in a bunco group
I sell at boutiques on the weekends
And on top of all that...I'm try to be a mom and a wife

It can be very overwhelming!  Scheduling is extremely important in our family.  My husband travels for work and is in a softball league so we have to communicate so we both know who needs to be where when.  We have tried many ways to keep this all straight and have found that the best way is to have a printed calendar on the fridge.  This is command central.  If it ain't on the calendar, chances are it ain't happening.  Then I make my personal calendar off of the main family calendar.

I wrote a post recently about how it's hard to be a working mom especially during the Summertime when I see stay at home moms planning all sorts of fun activities for their families.  I miss out on a lot of that so I made the commitment to use any downtime, no matter how short it may be, to do something special as a family.  We make Popsicles, go to the pool, go to fireworks at Disneyland, take a walk, play with bubbles, and watch movies.  You don't have to plan extravagant day long trips to make special memories with your family.

It's important to realize that there are things that can wait.  The laundry will still be there tomorrow and those toys will be taken out again in the morning so spend your free time doing the important things.  At the same time, you may have to give up an hour of reality TV watching to make sure the dishes don't get all crusty and gross from sitting in the sink for a week.  It's all about balance and my weakness is procrastination.  It tend to put things off, but I am working on it.

The last thing that I have really been conscious of is comparing myself to other moms, especially ones that stay home.  I have an amazing sis in law who works from home 2 days a week and celebrates every holiday on the calendar.  Talk like a pirate day, Chinese new year, our deceased grandparents birthdays...you name it, she has a full on celebration.  It's really awesome and it's hard to not be jealous of the time she has to make these memories with her family.  Sometimes I feel like my kids are missing out on things because I have to work, but I am trying to work on doing what I can.  I can't do it all and that is hard to accept.

That's just a few things that help me keep my family together.  If you want to read some more posts on parenting stop my blog and take a look around.  I enjoy sharing the ups and downs and disasters about parenting with the world.  Hopefully it makes you feel a little less crazy.

Thanks so much Nay for having me on the blog this week!  I just love your sweet spirit and you are a joy to know!