We Remember

11 Sep

I remember…. being on my way to work & hearing on the radio that a plane had crashed into the World Trade Center and wondering how that even happened. 

I remember…. working at Kay Jewelers and a guy working at Foot Locker with the TV on, saying another plane had crashed. I still didn’t understand how that could happen. I never even thought about terrorism.

I remember…. the feeling in my gut of being vulnerable and out of control. It was a scary feeling, having my sense of security completely taken from me.

I remember…. the pride we had as a country in the days & months after 9/11, how we all came together.

I remember…. getting the phone call that my little brother was going to war, that sick feeling returning to my stomach.

I remember…. my husband re-enlisting in the Army and the fear of the unknown mixed with my heart bursting with pride of my husband’s desire to serve our country.

I remember…. a little boy in Maddy’s pre school who lost his father in Afghanistan.

I remember…. when my husband came home and told me he would be deploying soon and trying to explain it to our children.

I remember…. the horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach that was there every second my husband was gone. 

I remember…. realizing my children would grow up only knowing conflict and tension in the world. They will never have the secure feeling I had as a child. How naive I was, not even knowing prior to 9/11/01 that terrorism could even happen in the United States.

I remember…. every time I see my friend Colleen’s picture on facebook of her and her son, living without their husband/father who lost his life in Afghanistan.

I remember…. every time we drive past Warrior’s Walk and my kids all get quiet and salute the brave men and women who each have a tree dedicated in their memory.

I remember…. every time I lay in bed and listen to TAPS playing at 11:00 each night.

I remember…. EVERY DAY. not just Memorial Day. not just every September. But every time I see a soldier in uniform, hear a helicopter fly over our house, see my friends who are in the middle of a deployment, just getting done with one, or are preparing for one. Every time my kids know what different Army trucks are called- MRAP, HUMVEE, Tank. And know the difference between an Apache, Chinook, and Blackhawk helicopter. How I get emotional every single time I hear the National Anthem being played.

But most of all I remember…. the 2,996 people that lost their lives that day and the 6,639 US Military that have given their lives for our country since.


Meal Planning Monday

11 Mar

My friend Alex {that I introduced you to yesterday} is hosting a meal planning link up today. I love getting new recipes from her and anything to make meal planning easier is a win in my book! I have a love/hate relationship with it. It can take me FOREVER because I can be so indecisive. I try really hard to make sure I’m planning things that I know everyone will eat. We don’t fix more than one meal in our home. Our kids eat what we eat, so I want to make sure it is fairly healthy & well liked. If they try it and really don’t like it, I will fix them oatmeal. I love meal planning because life is so much easier when you have a plan. After the initial day of planning, making a list, going to the grocery, and prepping all of my items once I get home {washing & cutting fruits and veggies, dividing meat up, etc.} I don’t have to think too much about dinner the rest of the week, which I love!

I do use a calendar when planning out my meals, but I don’t limit myself to having to make a meal on a specific night just because it says on my calendar :) So if we don’t feel like having whatever is on the calendar, I’ll pick a meal from another night and swap. I do try to be mindful of any evenings we may have activities or meetings and plan easier meals those nights. And, I almost always have something on the menu to grill on nights that Matt is off :)

So… here is my menu for the week. I’ll start from Sunday because that’s how I planned out my meals.

That’s all I have so far. We had a limited amount of time at the grocery on Sunday because Matt had to work that night, so I chose to make another trip later this week. Go check out Alex’s blog and find some new recipes! And if you have a blog, link up with her there.

Liebster Award

9 Mar

My sweet friend, Alex from Munchkins and the Military nominated me for the Liebster Award today. I met Alex about a year & a half ago. She was the FRG leader for Matt’s unit while he was deployed & has always been so supportive & encouraging. She has also become one of my twitter bff’s :) Alex has 2 beautiful daughters and blogs about life as a mommy and military wife. I love her meal planning posts and can always get a few new recipes from her. And did I mention she is hilarious? Go check out her blog, but come back here when you’re done ;) I was really honored to be nominated for an award, but honestly, had no clue what it was. heeee :)  From what I’ve gathered from ‘the Google’, it is an award for smaller, up & coming bloggers, to give recognition for their hard work. Fun, huh? Here are the rules:

The Rules:
Answer the 11 questions asked.
Leave a link back to the blogger that nominated you.
Nominate 11 bloggers with fewer than 200 followers and let them know they’ve been picked. (See Below)
Write 11 new questions for them to answer. (See Below)


Here are my questions from Alex:

1. Where would you like to live for the rest of your life?

On a lake in Tennessee
2. What are the first websites you check when you get onto the computer?

email, twitter, facebook, instagram, and google reader
3. What inspires you to blog?

I love to write. I am able to express myself in such a better way through writing than I’ve ever been able to by talking. Being a stay at home mama, it’s important for me to have something that is ‘mine’ and something I can use as a creative outlet, as well.
4. Are you a cat or dog person? Why?

Dog. I’m not sure why. We had the meanest cat alive when I was growing up, so that probably has something to do with it! haha!!
5. Do you have any strange or interesting hobbies?

hmmm… nothing strange or interesting. I’m pretty boring. ha! reading, sewing, crafting, running, yoga, shopping :) {I asked my husband what he thought & he said the fact that I always have to have a planner & make lists for everything we do is strange to him. hahaha!}
6. What would your ideal weekend consist of?

Lots of good food, heading to the beach as a family for the day, a date night with my hot husband, a little shopping, coffee & a good book, church, and  lots of sleep :)
7. Describe the best trip you’ve ever taken.

Just recently, we went to Hilton Head & it was such an amazing experience. We really needed that time together after Matt got back from his deployment and everything went so good while we were there. Being a part of Operation R&R, we had a lot of opportunities to do things we normally wouldn’t have done & it made the vacation so much better. 
8. What is your favorite recipe to cook for yourself?

I love when my man grills pork chops & I’m in the kitchen making all the sides. Usually roasted potatoes, corn on the cobb, and some variation of salad. 
9. What were your thoughts on your spouse/significant other, the first time you met them?

I thought he was super nice & very cute :) My best friend actually had a little crush on him and she used to ‘lock’ her keys in her car when she knew he was on duty so he would have to come get the car unlocked for her. haha! He was always so kind & polite. And oh man, the man can make me laugh! 
10. Out of all of the household chores, which is your least favorite?

Folding & putting away the laundry or mopping the floors.
11. If your TV had to get stuck on one channel for ever, which channel would you choose?

Sadly, I would probably pick Bravo or E! 

And here are the blogs that I am nominating:

The Ewing Family

Four L’s and Their Parents

The Pickled Poppy

This Life

MASH 4077 on the Home Front

The Faithful Home

{The Lovely Words}

Ok, so I was supposed to come up with 11, but 7 will have to do ;) Also, I’m not sure what ‘up & coming blogger’ is technically so I picked these lovely ladies that I know in real life or through other blogs/twitter, that I love to read. Here are your 11 questions from me:

1. What is your favorite book or what are you currently reading?

2. When you are feeling down or in a bad mood, what is something that always cheers you up?

3. Name a goal you are currently working towards.

4. What is the last thing you bought?

5. If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would you go?

6. What is your biggest pet peeve?

7. What is your favorite food?

8. When you were young, what did you want to be when you grew up?

9. If you could pick a movie star to play you in  a movie, who would you pick?

10. What is your favorite hobby?

11. What is your favorite feature about yourself?

I’m looking forward to reading your answers!



the girl’s new room

5 Feb

We have lived in this house for about 18 months and we are constantly changing & rearranging it- especially the bedrooms. When we moved in, we put Brody in the room next to ours, since he was still waking up through the night. Maddy & Olivia shared a room and Ellie was in her own, in a crib. Right before Matt left, Ellie was starting to climb out of her crib so we decided to move her to a big girl bed. We ended up moving her in with the big girls, Brody into  Ellie’s old room and made Brody’s room a play room & guest space. It worked really well while Matt was gone, but the girls room was very, very crowded. And, they never played in the play room. They would just drag the toys down the steps to the living room or had them strung down the hallway upstairs. It was a nightmare!

Around the time Matt came home, Maddy started asking for more privacy and wanting her own space. We decided to move her up to the room by ours {originally Brody’s nursery, then the play room} and keep Ellie & Olivia together. This arrangement has been the best by far and everyone seems very happy with it!

Now, we have been on a mission to get the rooms arranged and decorated. The girls all had desks, but it still felt pretty cramped so we took the desks out. We also went through all the toys in the house and got rid all of the broken things, multiples, or things they didn’t really play with. I am so glad we did this! Now, what they have is what they actually enjoy playing with and it will make it so much easier to have less to clean up!

I wanted to get the rooms as done as we could, but without spending very much. I knew I wanted to do a gallery wall, so I went through our bin of frames and picked out some that would work. I had bought a few canvases awhile back that I wanted to use  as well. Originally I was going to do the melted crayon art but my canvas was too small to do the heart. Then I saw this canvas with chevron and a felt flower and thought it would be easy to do. I picked up some pink felt and made the flower one evening while I was watching tv. I followed this tutorial & it was super easy, except for the multiple hot glue gun burns! The next day, I used a pencil to mark off the lines to paint the chevron pattern, then taped it off and painted it. Once it dried, I just glued to flower to the canvas and hung it up!20130205-101749.jpgI love how it turned out! It isn’t perfect, but it’s good enough for me. And the girls really like it, too! IMG_3236I left a lot of space in between the frames because I wanted it to take up the wall. I figured I can go back and add things in later, because I really didn’t want to buy anything. I used Krylon spray paint from Walmart in Watermelon and Pistachio for the frames.IMG_3243I also made the canvas on the bottom left. I just painted the canvas and a clothespin, then glued the pin {off center- whoops!} onto the canvas. Guess I should have measured. Oh well :) I found the bird printable here {free!} and the good day printable here {also free!}IMG_3242You are my sunshine {free} printable found here.IMG_3244We found the cutest storage ottomans at Big Lots for the end of each bed.IMG_3231They are sturdy enough for the girls to sit on, too. {Ellie decorated her bed for the picture!} IMG_3232Eventually, I want to re-do the silhouettes {they are a few years old} and move them to this frame with a bright colored paper behind the silhouette.IMG_3245I am hoping to make a trip to Hobby Lobby soon to find some pretty drawer pulls for the dresser.IMG_3246I love you to the moon & back printable found here.IMG_3235I found a bundle of coordinating fabric at Walmart and cut out the triangles, then sewed it together and tacked it up on the wall.     I am so happy with how their room has turned out so far! We still have a few things left to do, but this is SO much better than it was! I wish I had thought to take a ‘before’ picture.

We did some work in the master bedroom and Maddy’s room that I’ll be sharing soon, too.

::a quick hello::

4 Feb

Hello, friends!

Matt had a 4 day weekend this weekend, so we have been busy getting some projects done around the house. I can’t wait to share some pictures! If you follow me on Instagram, you have already seen a few sneak peaks ;)

My parents are coming to town for a few days on Thursday and our little man turns TWO on Friday, how can that be?! It will be a fun week at our house, for sure!

Check back in the next day or so to see some of our fun, new projects!

{{Happy Monday}}

Happy Sunday!

27 Jan

After 2 days in bed, a sinus infection diagnosis, and 6 prescriptions… I am so glad to be feeling better! I am forever thankful for my awesome husband who let me rest, fed & bathed the kids, took them to the park 4 times in 2 days, and encouraged me to go to the doctor! Matt- you are a ROCKSTAR! 

He also found a desk for me to create a small office/craft area in a storage room, right off the kitchen & laundry area! Y’all don’t even know how excited I am about this!! I can’t wait to use it! All of my craft supplies, sewing machine, fabric, etc. have been put up in bins. So, whenever I wanted to work on a project, everything came out {which =’s a big mess!} and I had to finish the project before 8 little hands could ‘help’ me. {which meant a bigger mess & a frustrated crafter} :)

I hope to be showing off some creations very soon!! I recently found this online Home-Ec class and seriously want to enroll. It’s a self-paced class and you end up making 28 projects. Call me nerdy, but this makes me all kinds of excited!

Matt is working today, so I’m off to hang out with my kiddos & maybe, just maybe, I’ll sneak in some craft time while Little Man is napping :)

Thrifty Thoughts {DIY Painted Rug}

24 Jan

We are a military family, which means frequent moves, and usually homes that have laminate or tile. Area rugs are a great way to make our home a little warmer and add some color and texture into a home that feels very sterile. White walls, light colored flooring, etc. Since area rugs are not the cheapest things, we decided that we would DIY a striped rug for our dining area. I had seen some ideas on pinterest and thought it looked easy enough, so we went on a search for the perfect rug. Most of the tutorials I found used a rug from Ikea, but we went to Lowe’s since Ikea is a good 4-5 hours from us ;) We found a plain beige 10 x14 rug for around $75! Score!

We had recently bought a rug from Home Goods for our adjoining living room that has tans, blues, greens, and browns. It has a very pretty pattern, it kind of reminds me of doilies :) I loved the thought of doing chevron, but taping that pattern sounded pretty overwhelming, so we decided on 10 inch brown stripes.

Using this tutorial and while Matt was bathing the kids and putting them to bed, I got busy measuring and taping off the stripes. There are subtle lines in the carpet, so I used those as a guide for the tape. Matt also cut a paint stirrer to 10 inches, so I used that to measure between the stripes every few inches to make sure my tape was straight. You have to make sure when you’re taping off the lines, you tape the inside of the stripes you’re leaving unpainted and the outside of the stripes you will paint. I also used my tape to make an ‘x’ in the areas that wouldn’t get painted, just so I wouldn’t get confused :0)


We used a roller and did 2 heavy coats. We would check every now & then to make sure the paint wasn’t leaking through the carpet and I used a piece of cardboard on the edges to make sure I didn’t paint the floor :) We started after the kids were in bed and it took us just a few hours to finish. We used a spray scotch guard on it to protect it, which has also helped the painted areas to not feel as stiff. It didn’t take very long to dry, but we kept the table and the kids off of it the next day.


I’m really happy with how it turned out! We never would have found a rug this size for under $100! IMG_2194

Sorry for the crappy iPhone pics, I wasn’t thinking about blogging about this then :)  We did this in October, so it has been a little over 3 months. The only issue we have had was when we used  a cleaner on it & some of the paint rubbed off onto the towel, so we have to go back and touch up a few spots. Now, we just use a wet rag and that seems to be working ok. So, I just gotta ask… what is the craziest thing you have painted?

{Linking up with Ashley at The Vanilla Tulip}


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