Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Day In A Life Of A One Year Old

Day In A Life of Little James: My First Day as a 1 Year Old
Little James wanted his turn at writing a post, so here is his blog debut! Turning one is a big deal so he wanted to share about his first day as a big, 1 year old boy!
Hi there! I am finally 1 year old. Today I woke up to Mommy and Daddy all excited and telling me “happy birthday”. I am usually not a morning person and today was no different, so I fussed a little bit. They brought me downstairs and where my toys usually are, I found some fun boxes wrapped in paper called presents! My pup helped me open them, what fun!

Then we ate breakfast, but instead of my usual fruit and oatmeal, I had something else! I had a special birthday breakfast that consisted of apple oatmeal and my very own pancakes made by Daddy. They were so yummy!

Soon after, I got tired and went down for my first nap. I never like to nap because I don’t want to miss a thing so I protested a bit. But Mommy knows when I am tired and put me my crib.
When I wake up, I like to yell for Mommy or Daddy to get me. I’ve got new toys to play with and things to get into so I like to make sure they get me right away! Mommy came to my rescue and changed my diaper and got me dressed for the day. Having my diaper changed multiple times a day get monotonous so I like to keep Mommy on her toes by turning over on my belly when she least expects it.
Now it is playtime! I spent lots of time with Daddy and Mommy, and of course Bailee. We played with my new toys. I started to get hungry so we had some lunch. I am not a big fan of squash but I ate it anyways so I can grow big and strong. Being a busy boy, I became tired again. The second I rubbed my eyes and let out a big yawn, Daddy scooped me up and put me down for nap #2. I didn’t even protest. That was how tired I was!

After nap time, Grandma J and Grandpa J stopped by and brought over some more presents! Of course my pup came to help again.

I had a nice dinner of sweet peas and cheese. Did you know that baby food also doubles as awesome hair gel? I decided I needed a new look so I put some in my hair. When I thought dinner was done, Daddy brought out a special treat. A cake! It was little and shaped like an airplane. It had a bright light on it which I tried to grab but Daddy wouldn't let me touch it. It was so pretty, then he blew it out after they sang “happy birthday” to me. Then something awesome happened. Daddy put my cake in front of me and I just went for it! Boy was it yummy!

I was quite the mess so it was bath and bedtime. Grandma J got me a cool new bath toy I got to play with. I also found an awesome new toy in the tub. It is silver and when I put it out, the water goes away! Since the water left, it was time to get out and get ready for bed. I ate one last bedtime snack with Mommy, and it was off to bed. Being 1 is awesome and I love it.
Little James

Friday, October 24, 2014

Friday Favorites: Naturebox

We recently had the opportunity to try out some Naturebox products. The idea of having a subscription service that gives you snacks that are relatively healthy and minimally processed is unique. You can pronounce all the ingredients and have options like non-GMO, gluten free, soy free, egg free, and nut free. They have something for all tastes and a variety of dietary needs. Here is what we thought about the snacks we got in our free trial!

These are our personal takes on these awesome snacks, but you can always see for yourself at Naturebox. You can get a free trial where you only have to pay shipping. Happy snacking!

What kind of healthy snacks do you recommend?
Have you tried Naturebox? What do you think?


Thursday, October 23, 2014

Testament Tuesday: Bathsheba

Well "Anything Can Happen Thursday" is definitely living up to it's name today. We've had an "anything can happen" sort of week at our house and this means we get to have a "Testament Thursday" instead of Tuesday! Enjoy! 

"Her beauty stirred the passion of a king. Her pain moved the heart of God." - Francine Rivers

Bathsheba's story is initially one of adultery and sin but later moves to one of healing and hope. Her beauty caught King David's attention and he was immediately taken with her. Although she was married to another man who was at war at the time, Bathsheba became pregnant by King David. The king hoped to trick Bathsheba's husband into thinking the child was his buy persuading him to sleep with his wife. But a soldier was not to lay with a woman while in battle, and so could not be convinced. King David then sent him to the frontlines where he would surely die. King David and Bathsheba then got married and God did many things in their lives. Bathsheba's story can be found in 2 Samuel 11.

Think about times when you have been tempted. How have you responded and what kind of pattern do you see?
Unfortunately, temptation is something we all face every day. We can be tempted by food, laziness, people, and everywhere in between. Laziness is a big temptation for me. I feel like I go to sleep every night convincing myself that I will be productive and useful the following day. Then I wake up, throw on some sweats, and watch half a season of Gilmore Girls. I'm not saying we all deserve a restful day every once in awhile, but my days can turn into weeks if I'm not careful. 
Sometimes I acknowledge the temptation for what it is and move past it. Other times, I consciously give in to the temptation fully aware of the consequences. It takes a lot of self-awareness and will-power to not give in to our temptations, and it's something I'm constantly working on. 

When you face your own sin, do you hide it, handle it, or confess it?
When I sin, I feel like Eve. I hide in the bushes and cover myself with leaves in the hopes that God won't see me. Then I slap myself (figuratively, of course) because God knew I was going to sin before I even knew what sin was. Sometimes it takes me being confronted by a fellow Christian before I own up to my mistake and confess it to God and seek His forgiveness. 

What role do we have in helping one another be restored to God?
Dear brothers and sisters, if another Christian is overcome by some sin, you who are godly should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. Share each other's troubles and problems, and in this way obey the law of Christ. Galatians 6:1-2

I love these verses because there's so much to learn in just a few short sentences. We must be GENTLE and HUMBLE when we confront others about their sin. This requires love, not judgement. It's easy to fall prey to a sin we are trying to help someone out of. We must be careful and guard our hearts when we put ourselves in that environment. I think the last sentence can be taken two ways. 1) Your troubles are my troubles; when you hurt, I hurt. We need empathy and compassion to help one another get back on track. 2) We need to communicate with others what we are going through. By all means, take all of your problems to God. This should most definitely be your first stop on th road to healing. But God has a way of working through the people in our lives, and by sharing your life with someone else, you're opening the door.

I really love the story of Bathsheba because it shows us that even when we fall down into a huge pit that we've dug for ourselves, God will pull us out of it.

God Bless,

Friday, October 17, 2014

Pumpkin Week Giveaway

Thank you Ashleigh P. and Alaina L. for commenting on our Pumpkin Week posts! We'd like to share the giveaway and let you each pick your favorite Pumpkin Week feature. We'll be in contact with each of you!

Thank you all for participating in Pumpkin Week! Have a great weekend!

God Bless,

Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea

Not a coffee lover but still in the mood for something pumpkin flavored? Then I found just the thing! Chai tea is my favorite and now that it comes in a pumpkin variety, I'm in heaven!

The flavor is very strong so I had to use more water than I usually would. But it was just what I needed on a cold evening. The weather is starting to turn cooler and darker here so a mug of pumpkin tea warms the body and soul. 

I was a little skeptical at first but this is definitely something you should try! Some other suggestions would be to try your favorite plain tea with a shot of pumpkin flavored syrup or a splash of pumpkin spice creamer. Get creative! 

We hope you enjoyed our pumpkin favorites! Don't forget to enter our giveaway before 5pm PST today! You could win your choice of 2 of our Pumpkin Week features! Just comment on any Pumpkin Week post with your favorite pumpkin flavored food item, share the Pumpkin Week Facebook post, and follow us on Pinterest! Winner will be chosen at random at 5pm PST today.

God Bless,

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Pumpkin Week: Pumpkin Pie Blizzard

Every fall even though I am bundled up in a jacket and scarf, I will go to DQ for their delicious Pumpkin Pie Blizzard. I realize it is fall and Dairy Queen's Blizzards are usually a cold, sweet treat enjoyed in summer, but every bite of this sweet treat deserves a yum!

Now for a few years, we lived in an area where the nearest Dairy Queen was a good couple hours away. Coming back to an area with a DQ, I had totally forgotten about this tasty treat until I passed by on and read their sign! You ready to know what it tastes like?

Think of pumpkin pie filling in ice cream form with pie crust pieces mixed in. The flavor is subtle, yet in every bite, you taste the familiarity of this classic fall time pastry.The pie crust bits aren't even soggy, they taste like you just crumbled it, fresh baked. And to top it off, you have whipped cream of course!

Are there any frozen, fall, sweet treats we should try? Please share!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Pumpkin Week: Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows

Hot chocolate is a wonderful, hot treat for any age. I love a mountain of marshmallows in my mug and I think I might've found the most amazing thing to happen to hot chocolate.....Pumpkin Spice Marshmallows! Did your mind just explode with excitement? If you've already discovered these tasties, then please excuse me for just now coming on to the scene.

My days have been so busy lately that I need coffee to get through the day. When I get Little Girl in bed at the end of the day and have some time to myself (you know, those 10 minutes between loads of laundry and cleaning the kitchen), sipping on hot chocolate lets me go to a whole new place. I get to be a kid again and stuff more marshmallow than liquid in my cup. Then it's back to work, taking care of my beautiful family.

So feel free to indulge this evening when you get the chance. Or heck, skip the hot chocolate and pop a few 'mallows while you catch up on your favorite tv show (Blacklist anyone?)! No judgement here!

We want to hear about your favorite pumpkin treats!

God Bless,

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Pumpkin Week: Pumpkin Spice Trail Mix and M&Ms

Today is all about trail mix and a trail mix staple, M&Ms. YUM! Pumpkin is so popular these days that everyone tries to put it in everything, which being a fellow pumpkin lover, I do not mind and love to spend some of our grocery budget trying new pumpkin products.

Trail mix always makes for a great snack. At Target, I found their Archer Farms Monster Trail Mix (your basic peanuts, M&Ms, raisins, and peanut butter chips) in Pumpkin Spice. Everything was the same except for the M&Ms are Pumpkin Spice, and the candy chips are a festive orange and brown, and all are doused in pumpkin spice seasoning. Pumpkin just exploded over trail mix! If you are a big pumpkin spice fan and don't want it in a form of a drink, this is definitely for you.

I love me some M&Ms. Give me a bag small bag, you know ones you see when you are checking out of the grocery store, and an hour of Gilmore Girls and you can call the bag of M&Ms demolished. So then we had to try Pumpkin Spice M&Ms. If you like M&Ms they are great. Although if you are looking for the pumpkin spice, the taste it faint and very subtle. There were only a few we could taste a pumpkin spice but they were still yummy!

Are there any pumpkin or pumpkin spice snacks you would recommend? We are all for trying them!

Happy Harvest Blessings,

Monday, October 13, 2014

Pumpkin Week: PSL & Pumpkin Cream Cheese Muffin

Welcome to Pumpkin Week! Here and James & June, we love all things pumpkin. You might be over everything pumpkin, but we're not! So we've dedicated this week to the official mascot of fall. And to kick it off, it's pumpkin spice lattes and pumpkin cream cheese muffins!

Starbucks is one of our favorite indulgences! There's just something about a warm cup of coffee in your hand and a sweet treat to snack on. Living in the PNW, we have plenty of coffee shops to choose from. I like to try all of the little coffee stands around us, but something keeps pulling me back to Starbucks.

To us, nothing says Fall like grabbing a cuppa joe and walking through park as the leaves change or even strolling around Target checking out cute decorations.

What flavor of coffee gets you in the mood for Fall?
Know of any good coffee places besides Starbucks? We'd love to try them out!

It's time for another giveaway! All you have to do is comment on any Pumpkin Week post with your favorite pumpkin flavored food item, share the Pumpkin Week Facebook post, and follow us on Pinterest before 5pm PST on Friday! You could win your choice of 2 of our Pumpkin Week features! Winner will be chosen at random at 5pm PST on Friday! 

Happy Fall Y'all!

God Bless,

Friday, October 10, 2014

Friday Favorites: May Designs Planner

I have a handful of friends that are AMAZING at organization and keep immaculate planners. They are so talented and find the best planners. I, on the other hand, don’t have an organized bone in my body. But, I am working on finding an organization style that works for me especially in the areas of clutter and time. Right now I am tackling time.
I have rifled through planner after planner. I have often switched planners twice in a year, in an attempt to reorder my life. Indecisive much? Yup. Then I came across May Designs. Their planners had everything I needed. Here is why…
  • They are simple and minimalist. There is a calendar for each month and the weeks. This is all I need. A month for things I am doing and a section to write to do lists. The weekly calendars do seem small but I like to keep my to do lists simple and small, spending more time with my son and husband. Also with it being small, I am less likely to write lists a mile long.

Monthly View
Weekly View
  • They are compact and durable. They measure 5x8 inches and fit into a purse and are lightweight. I literally can throw this in my bag and you wouldn’t even know it’s there. It has survived attempted tearing and biting by my 11 month old. Disclaimer: Not all babies are created equal, so be careful when it is around a little one!
  • They are cute. Who doesn’t love cute notebooks! I chose a white planner with teal polka dots. I just love polka dot everything. I was even able to personalize it with my name but for privacy reasons I covered that part.

The only thing I struggled with was the price. It was a little over my budget so I waited for a sale, but they have some awesome ones! But now that I have actually used one and love it, I wouldn't mind buying it when it is full price the next time I need one.

Be sure to check out May Designs  and their Facebook page for sales!

What kind of planner do you use and love?

How do you organize it?

**Disclaimer** This is not a sponsored post. All opinions belong to me, the writer. Thank you!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Godparent Book

My husband and I have the amazing privilege of being the Godparents of the brilliant and beautiful Addy. We don't get to see her very often (only 3 times in just as many years), but the pictures, videos, and FaceTime chats are the highlights of our days!

We were blessed to be able to visit Addy and her family last month. We had so much fun hanging out with them for the weekend and I can't wait to tell you all about it! But right now I want to share with you one of the things we got Addy for her 3rd birthday.

The Godparents of Addy's sister approached us awhile back about creating Guidebooks to Your Godparents for the girls. We made several pages and put them in a photo album. We left a good portion of the photo album empty so we could fill it with all our future pictures together. Here are a few of our favorite pages:

Being a godparent is so much fun! We love getting creative and making memories with the ones we love! 
What creative gifts have you made? 

God Bless,

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Create Your Own No Bake Energy Bites

Now that we have gotten a chance to work on our blog a bit, it is so great to be back! I have a fun recipe for "WWMW" (What We Made Wednesday). I hope you enjoy!

You know what I like? Quick, easy, and healthy, especially when it comes to food! Whether you are a busy mom, working woman, or a college student, making these no bake energy bites are a great snack or breakfast on the go. 

I am always searching for recipes that I can make fresh at home. I have seen lots of Pinterest recipes on no bake energy bites and they are all so different and tasty. They can either be healthy or indulgent, and the best part is you can make them to your liking. Here’s how to make them!

When you've chosen and mixed up all your ingredients (I always end up doing it by hand), stick the mixture into the fridge for about 20-30 minutes. Then I take a cookie scoop or create balls by hand and stick them in mini muffin liners. I like to add a little visual appeal to my food. Lastly, I have stick them in a container and stick them in the fridge and eat a few while I'm at it. They will last for about a week in the fridge.

Here is a batch I made the other night. I just used what I had at home this time around. I used old fashioned oats for my base and peanut butter. For my add ins, I had unsweetened coconut flakes, cranberries, honey, mini dark chocolate chips, and cinnamon. They sure make a good breakfast while I am chasing my little cruiser around the house!

What kind of things would you add to your energy bites?
What are some easy and healthy recipes do you have?
Please share!