Category Archives: house keeping

Colors – It works so far

You all will think I am nuts when I tell you this. I seriously contemplated selling everything and living in an RV. No, forreal. I kinda sorta want too. We however probably will not :) – but there is a part of me that would love to try. While on my RV “search of information” spell, I found a blog called Inspiration Station. A family of 8, yes 6 kids… live in an RV. Full time. They are such a cute family too and seem totally normal :) – at least to me they do… but by our world aka social standards they are nuts. Lots of kids and no real house. To them though it is home. There is also a site called the Kellogg Show. This family has 12 kids! They also live in an RV. I am not sure I could do it with 12… this family inparticular seems a little to rough around the edges for my sanity too. Im all for big families. Trust me :) – but im also for structure… I watched a handful of the youtube videos they had on their channel and I was a bit disappointed if im honest… but I don’t know them personally so I wont say much more. Do not think I could live in an RV with 12 kids regardless of how they behaved ;-) but with 4, I bet we could. Don’t worry dad, we aren’t. It is just a random thought I had – that I was “actually” considering. Strange.

One thing I learned though while on Inspiration Station’s blog was how they keep clutter down – for obvious reasons. One thing she talked about was their color coding dish system. With such limited space she had to come up with a way to limit the amount of dishes used. So she gave each person in the family (or child) a color. Each child got ONE cup in their color, one plate in their color, one bowl and so on. Make sense? So if that child came to the kitchen and wanted a drink but could not find their cup in the “normal cup spot” – they would not be allowed to get a drink unless they found their cup.

I cannot even begin to tell you the frustration I have dealt with over cups. By the end of the day I had 15 cups to wash. No lie. Was down right crazy to wash that many cups or use that many.

So! I got color coded cups, plates & bowls for all the boys! I btw pre-color coding was big on ALL GLASS. I had no plastic cups really, only glass. I love glass… not a fan of plastics… but I am giving way to my OCD and anti-plastic desires and choosing plastic for this particular thing, in order to gain sanity with the cup situation. :) I don’t really think plastic is bad unless you microwave with it or put something hot in it. Since we don’t intend to drink hot drinks in these, I am ok with it.

These tumblers came from Dollar Tree. So pleased with their selection these days.
*The Purple cup looks slightly darker. That was my cup and it had tea… it really is a very pretty purple otherwise.*

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Caleb is Green. Taite Blue. Owen Red. Travis Orange and myself Purple. Reed because he is still small and needs bottles/sippy cups… we don’t really have a special cup for him. I did however get him yellow plates. So when he is older he will be the color yellow… or possibly white. I haven’t decided ;-) – so far this system is working great! I have not had an endless supply of dirty cups to wash and instead of washing dishes twice a day, I only had to do them but once.

I did btw put all the other cups up high. This way the kids are not tempted to use them. They would have to get a step stool to even reach the normal cups now… We will still use them when guest come…

To end, a few random photos from a picnic we had on our back deck yesterday. Love this spring weather!

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“Cheers”

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A Bedroom

This morning I was checking e-mails and with that task comes checking my facebook messages. I try not to stream facebook often. It sucks me in and I waste time… however since I run a business I do have to check my messages there as well…

While on there this morning I saw in my feeds a link to a write up about Children’s bedrooms around the globe. It caught my eye and so I clicked it.

As I scrolled through the images on this page… looking at all these children around the globe and the bedrooms they slept in. I was humbled. So often I get caught up in perfection. While I know it will never happen, ever. Even once my kids are gone and out of my home, a house almost never is perfect. Yet I strive so hard for that perfect home. Our home is 3 stories. Yes, 3. It is not elaborate but it is on the large side IMO. We are thankful for it.

Our drive way enters a double garage and from that you enter our basement. The basement consist of a study (my husbands) as well as a guestroom/playroom w/ Queen bed and a full bathroom. That room opens up onto a back deck that gives access to our backyard. It is a great set up. We love having that space since my family visits often. Gives them their own space to be when visiting.

On the main floor (technically our 2nd floor) we have our kitchen, living room, laundry room, den & school room. Typical I suppose for a main floor. I love how our home has large windows and an open floor plan. It really is a great layout even though at times I complain it is to loud, since it is so open.

Upstairs (the 3rd floor) we have 4 bedrooms… master/master bath, small nursery and then two normal sized bedrooms and another full bath. This floor in our home I must admit gets neglected. It is out of sight most of the day and therefore I don’t mess with it much. Majority of those who enter our home never see it. So it isn’t high on the priority list. Yet, I beat myself up so often about its imperfection.

How the kids leave closet doors open CONSTANTLY (drives me nuts), how they cant seem to keep clothes off the floor or beds made neatly. The bed making thing I do encourage but I have never been very firm on it because I don’t make my bed most days. So I feel a bit hypocritical asking them to do it, if I don’t. My kids do a lot of other chores and I guess because of that this has never seemed “super” important… That is just me. I would much rather them help do dishes, take out trash, etc…

I am trying very hard to weed out clutter in our home. We have very few TOYS upstairs. The boys are allowed a few toys to play with in their bed… but that is about it. Their closets are NOT packed full of toys. Less is essential here. I am finding the more TOYS we have, the more bickering we have. There really is no need to have a ton of nick knacks laying around.

Right now my goal is to scale down clothing. A TON. I think once I figure this out the messes will be much less and I am ok with the imperfections and organization my kids have with their things. As you can tell we have some critters in our home. Taite has a Hamster named Daisy (she’s new, his last hamster died recently). Caleb has a bearded dragon named August, a garter snake named Lief and LOTS of supplies to tend to them. Some of those supplies are live feed – so he requires lots of “stuff” to do what he does. I am just thankful he does it so I don’t have to.

With this post though of these children, it was just a reminder of how a bedroom really does not need to be perfection. It is a reminder of how blessed we are, messy bed and all. A reminder of what should be valued, that child. Not the mess. Being thankful for FOUR walls… without cracks in them or gaping holes. For soft carpet and mattresses… clean linen’s and light. We have so much and yet we can’t see how blessed we are.

So for personal therapy… I decided I would take photos of 2 of my children’s bedrooms to share their messes :) – I was going to photograph Reed’s but he was napping at the time. His room is bare though. Consist of an old crib and 1 dresser, that is it. He has no toys in his room and typically the only mess found there are his blankets or stuff toys he likes in his crib thrown on the floor. Or baskets of clothing I have yet to put away. Nothing to interesting… ;-)

I do not like that their room’s look sloppy in these photos… but I want to share with those reading that I am not perfect. We do not live in a perfected magazine home… and messes do occur in a house hold with 4 boys :)


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Taite & Owen’s bed’s do bunk. They wanted them unbunked though.
Also they are way easier to make up and wash unbunked.

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To View the Original Source of the Photos of Children’s bedrooms above CLICK HERE (its a great article, seriously click it)

Weight of Motherhood

We were on the church trolly this am headed to worship and reed begins to pucker up and cry.. He knew what was coming. Nursery. By the time we got to the actual building he was in hysterics. I've never had one cry this bad before and get so emotional to lWeight. Its a funny word.
You associate it with gain. Loss. Measures. Strength.

Ive had a rough time lately with that weight.
I guess you could say in both physical and emotionally/mentally/spiritually.

Weight obviously sticks around after 4 babies and those who don’t have that problem are blessed or don’t eat :) – My body despite my fight, seems to enjoy the 5-7 pounds of post baby weight. It doesnt seem to want to let that go :) – learning to be content with it… but I do have my days it depresses me. Wont lie about that.

The weight of motherhood though for me right now is in regards to what it puts on you year after year… after year.

I remember when I first began this journey of motherhood. It was something I actually never really “wanted” – although once I got married I did… but as a teen/young adult, I did not want kids for a while. Funny how God can place us in a path that we never see coming HAH.

When I first had my children the weight was not as heavy. I remember thinking often about the safety of my children more than anything.

About SIDS.

About all the possible childhood illnesses they could contract.

About them falling and breaking their neck.

About vaccinating or not to vaccinate.

About which carseat and which direction would be best.

About using a crib with bumpers or not bumpers… this use to consume like crazy!

These two and my #iPad … yet now as my children grow older… I find myself less concerned or I guess more adapted to those thoughts… I don’t let the vaccine thing consume like it did years back. I did my homework, stand firm and carry on. I use to worry myself sick about what others thought about my choices, as well as the medical world…. doctor after doctor belittling me and our choices… it weighed heavy on me.

The weight of it was so hard. Being a young mother, made it even harder.

The weight of not being able to nurse my children, baby… after baby… after baby… as hard as I tried it would not work and it broke my heart each and every single time.

The weight of to educate at home or to send them to public school.

The weight of what to feed them. Because apparently everything on the shelf is bad for us. I mean subway bread will kill us right?

The weight of discipline…. WOW.

Motherhood is changing constantly for me. I have learned a lot the last few years especially. I do not at all feel I have “gotten there” as far as “knowing what I have done” is the best choice… I don’t think any of us will ever get there… nor will we ever always make the right choice.

… but you better believe I will try my best.

Even if my best is imperfect and filled with mistakes.

The weight of motherhood today is heavy on me.

Caleb reading the hobbit while #beardeddragon August relaxes as well :) - so sweet. #homeschooler #homeschool #badweatherhermit Love my boys dearly but after days that are less than easy, you become weary.

Wondering if you are doing things right.

Wondering if it matters.

Wondering if they will grow up to be amazing adults, or broken from all the mistakes you made along the way.

My prayers for safety are there… but even more so I pray the Lord saves me boys young… and that they desire to honor Christ…

That is what ultimately matters….

I want so much for these dudes.

Truly.

Happiness.

Success.

Marriages that are strong.

Children.

and most of all Salvation.

The weight of a mother…. if you are new at this journey, hang tight :) – if you are in the phase I am in, lets be real together…. I am tired of being fake.. although for some time I feel I have been pretty transparent with most. I still have a tendency to put my guard up… but im learning to let it down. I want other moms to know they are not alone in this journey and that it is ok to feel broken some days.

DIY Goo-Gone

I had 4 sticky spots on my hardwood floors from some duck tape I had used to adhere a rug to the floor. Probably not the wisest form of adhesive haha… none the less, the rug is no longer there, which has left 4 nasty looking sticky spots on my floor, big ones. I was going to go out and buy some goo-gone to remove the sticky stuff… but my mom said “I bet you can figure out a DIY recipe.” So I did!

I found one that actually works and had to share. Its super simple

gogone

3 parts baking soda, 1 part oil (I used cheap canola oil, my floor doesnt care if its gmo)

I just eye’d this measurement btw. It isn’t rocket science :) – poured in my baking soda into a mason jar (small one) and then poured on top of it a little oil. Stirred it up and it made a paste… It wasn’t super thick, was kind of like syrup you’d pour on pancakes. I then used a tooth brush I had for cleaning and went to rubbing. The spots I had were very sticky… VERY very sticky… so it took some work rubbing this to get it off… but it did come off!! ALL OF IT.

SO I saved a trip to walmart and used two ingredients I already had at home to get the job done.

Amazing what a little baking soda will do. I swear, baking soda is awesome. I use it for everything now.

Hope this works for y’all! :) Pin this if you use it to share the love.

OCD – My Secret

ED9A8169So, I thought id post about something that may be a bit taboo for some to read about. It may be something that people “worry” about or “think less of” when they hear people struggle with it. Although they would be in the wrong, not the one with the struggle. It might be something many people who know me, know already. I however don’t talk about it much… so I thought while I had it on my mind, id go ahead and post about it.

I have come to the understanding since moving to GA… that I struggle with some OCD tendencies. We had to go through pretty intense counseling when we came to the City of Refuge here in Atlanta… a place of healing and refuge… but obviously a place where you face a lot of your demons too.

I remember having OCD habits even as a kid.

I hated when my hands would get dusty or gritty… Id have to lick or wash them immediately. Yes lick. The thought of grit or dirt on my hand bothered me for some reason.

I am very funny with food textures… which can be linked to OCD… I to this day can’t eat many foods because of their texture. Yogurt… oatmeal (cooked), sweet potato (I will eat sweet potato fries, because they are crunchy, not squishy or mushy), I dislike any fish, mainly because of the taste but texture comes into play, peanut butter, smoothies (I have to force myself to drink them), milk shakes (hate them), need I go on?

I also remember from the moment I married, moving furniture CONSTANTLY. What is up with that? bored? :-)

Now that I have lots of little ones in the house, I am being faced with my struggle head on.

ED9A8172KIDS ARE SO MESSY.

Boys especially.

I know the Lord gives you each little one for a reason, and while my boys being here have so many reason :) – I know one of those reasons is to teach me and help me, by being forced to deal with this daily.

While our home is so far from perfect, on days it is not “together” – I do struggle with looking at it. I have to fight the urge not to get upset. I am very tense if my home is messy… and even though I know with complete understanding that these little messes do not matter long term… it still does bother me. It seriously is a type of bondage that I fight daily.

Im in the thick of it.

Dealing.

Been medicated at one point. No shame there. Although I have felt shame for it.

I currently am not on medication… but I won’t say that my days are perfect either.

I am taking something called Valerian Root right now at night to help me with relaxing a bit at night. It is suppose to work similar to Melatonin. It is a root extract and contains magnesium as well, which is also known to help with anxiety. It is something I do not intend to take long term. Just for these last few weeks in the thick of winter. Winter I have noticed I battle this more than any other time of the year. It hits me hard. I think being cooped up indoors has a big part of that…

Assigning chores to our boys does help… but I will be honest in saying that them having to do chores, sometimes makes it worse… because It isn’t done perfect and I want it to be.

UGH, seriously such a horrid cycle!

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I know through prayer and with time, I can deal with this… and hopefully one day be free from it (for the most part). We live in a broken world, we are each broken in our own ways… and this is one way I am broken right now.

So to all the mommy’s out there who may be dealing with anxiety, OCD, depression… you aren’t alone.