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Sunday, July 27, 2014

The Best-Kept Secrets of Parenting

I was hesitant, yet interested, in reading a parenting book written by a male. For some reason I thought I wouldn't learn much from a male perspective. Luckily, The Best-Kept Secrets of Parenting by Brad Wilcox & Jerrick Robbins did not disappoint. This is not really about the day to day parenting but rather the attitude of parenting, which every parent can learn more about.

In a day in age where it is more politically correct to be a friend to your children, it's refreshing to see a book that promotes friendly parenting. Topics such as bringing humor into parenting give us a fresh look on parenting while still maintaining the focus of being a parent. Changes things up in how we relate to our children can and does make a world of difference.

What I like about this book is that it applies to both parents. Most parenting books seem to focus solely on mothering. This book would be great for mother or father, or read together even! 

Disclaimer: This book was given to me by Familius Publishing in exchange for my honest review.  

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Boxycharm July Review

Boxycharm is a newer beauty subscription box. You receive several full size items for $21 a month. This was my first month receiving it so I was excited to see what was inside!
The theme for July is America the Beautiful. The shipping was so slow, I received it about a week after everyone else did. I'm not sure why.
All boxes are the same, though colors of products may differ. I received:

*Appeal Cosmetics Luxurious Lipstick ($22). I'm very happy with the color I received (Mock-Up).

*bellapierre Natural Lip Liner ($18). I don't use lip liner. :/ 

*bellapierre Shimmer Powder ($14.99) I love shimmer powder in place of eyeshadow! This is a nice color too (Bubble Gum).

*pur-lisse pur-protect SPF 30 moisturizer ($55) That's some expensive moisturizer. But I've used this brand before and really like it.

*Lauren B. Beauty Nail Polish - Rodeo Drive ($18) This color is really deep and rich, I'm thinking a good one for fall! 

While this box didn't excite me as much as the spoilers for June's box did, Boxycharm is a very high value subscription with some awesome brands and products to try. I'm keeping it to see how August shapes up! You can follow them on Facebook to see some spoilers, so far I know the August box is including a bronzer with a $35 value.

Disclaimer: Referral links included in post. 


I admit that I expected this book to be a bit boring. Simplify. Ten Practices to Unclutter Your Soul by Bill Hybels has a very simple cover. I totally judged it by the cover.

My goodness! Once I started reading it I was nodding my head along to several paragraphs. I grabbed a notebook to write down quotes and Bible verses and notes. I got SO MUCH out of this book!

I liked it so much, in fact, that I brought it along to Bible Study and shared it with the class. While it is not really a devotional (though I hear a devotional to go along with the book is in the works!!!), it teaches so much that our Bible Study decided to use this as our next book.

There are ten topics covered in the book; the most helpful for me were finances, forgiveness, and friendship. Bill goes in depth with each topic but not in a heavy way - the way he writes is wonderfully easy to read and makes so much sense.

If you only buy one book this year to change your life I think this one should be it! I highly recommend it.

Disclaimer: This book was given to me by Tyndale Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Brain Splat

Today is the last day of Vacation Bible School. Joe had to miss it yesterday since he was feeling sick but was happy to be able to make it on the last day. It feels so strange having just Amy for almost 3 hours each morning. It gives me a taste of what it would be like if the two oldest were in school. I'm not going to lie, I really like the more quiet house and it is so much easier. Seriously, these mornings have felt like a vacation!

I've been looking for fabric to make curtains for the kitchen for months now. And I just happened upon this awesome IKEA fabric at the thrift store in town. For $2 for what appears to be 2 yards or more! It's thick and perfect!! I hope to get that project done this weekend. 

Speaking of fabric, but related to another topic, what is your favorite stain remover for clothing? My kids are messy and I'm not liking my usual "go to's" for stain removal, especially for Amy's clothing. I've actually ruined a couple outfits trying to get stains out recently. Anything gentle that works wonders?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Thursday Thoughts

Yesterday I woke up and was just sick.and.tired of my house. It's been feeling tiny, crowded, and cluttered. I've felt down about not having the money to decorate it the way I want and finally came to the conclusion to use what I have and shake it up a bit. So I used the time when the two oldest were at Vacation Bible School and had Amy "help" me rearrange the dining room, fill a bag for donation, and am liking the space better already. Once it's where I want it to be I'll post some photos (I wish I had thought to snap a before photo).

Little Amy has been pretending to be a puppy lately. She even crawls into the kennel, shuts the door, and barks. What a cutie! 
 One sister for sale,
One sister for sale,
One crying and spying young sister for sale

I'm really not kidding so who'll start the bidding
Do I hear a dollar?
A nickle?
A penny?
Oh isn't there isn't there isn't there any
One person who will buy this sister for sale
This crying spying young sister for sale.”

― Shel Silverstein

While I homeschool, and don't have to do "back to school shopping" in the traditional manner, I do enjoy buying the kids new socks, underwear, and clothes before the beginning of fall anyhow. Actually, any excuse to shop for kids clothes is fine by me. ;) I still try to do it on the cheap. Luckily, I have $50 credit to Moxie Jean for a bag of clothing that I sent in and have a Rue La La voucher to Boden to use (I paid $35 for a $50 voucher and will combine it with free shipping and the 15% off code). My aunt's consignment shop also just put all their fall stuff out and I found the cutest GAP birdie sweater for Amy. I really need to go through the tubs of out of season clothes I have because I really don't think the kids need a whole lot this coming fall. One of the benefits of buying ahead at garage sales and consignment shops!

Don't forget to enter for the $50 Boden gift certificate! It ends in a few days!

I'm following Jennifer with Thursday Thoughts! 

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

VBS Week

It's Vacation Bible School time! The kids are having a blast and love telling me all about their day when I come to pick them up. 

Amy is so not used to having the house to herself and she looks so confused when we drop the kids off, like "Why do they get to stay here and not me?!" When it's time to pick them up she anxiously gets into the stroller and then waits with rapt attention for the classes to be finished.
This is Amy waiting, she's very interested in what was going on in the other room.
The kids are enjoying arts and crafts, games, snack time, and most of all - learning about God, kindness, hardships of others, and love. Nothing says summer as much as VBS!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Boden Love & Giveaway

If you've been reading my blog for long you realize that I have a love affair with clothes. You may also notice certain brands more often than others. Some of my favorites fill the kids clothes and dressers and one of those brands is Boden, specifically Mini Boden! 
I especially enjoy the boys "baggies" (shorts) as they grow with the kids through the years and match so many of their tops. The first year I buy them they fit like capris (which is the intention), the next year they fit like board shorts, and the next like regular shorts. So I essentially get three years wear out of them. And, they usually hold up so well that I can still resell them (the value of Boden resell is high!).
And their Baby Boden line is adorable. I always want it all for Amy! They have excellent sales, which I combine with a coupon code, and usually get some pretty decent deals for our clothes. 
The Fall 2014 line launches today! And OH. MY. GOODNESS!!!! This is my favorite line yet! A woodland theme?! PERFECT!!!!!
BIRDS?! This tunic is a favorite of mine and Becca agrees!
And this tunic top with footless tight set? Adorable!
Just look at these fabric choices this year. Birds, trees, color! Vintage and fun.
I don't own many Boden clothes for myself, but look at some of the items from the woman's line.
And these Baby Boden boys clothes make me want a baby boy, they are so cute.

You can use code X3Y2 for 15% off your order and free shipping

Ready for a chance to win a $50 gift certificate? Boden is graciously offering one of my winners a $50 gift certificate! This drawing is open to residents with a US-based shipping address and is only valid at www.BodenUSA.com.

You can come back to enter once daily. Drawing ends on Monday, July 28th.
a Rafflecopter giveaway


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