Let’s Look: At Our Coffee Bar!

It’s the first LET’S LOOK of 2021…and my first LET’S LOOK EVER!! I am excited for this little link-up party!

Once a month, Shay and Erika host a little link-up where they “look” at different aspects of their lives and then other bloggers do it, too, and link to to the party! SO here I am! I am excited for this first one as it is something that I am very serious about…

COFFEE!!!

All joking aside … I am very serious about my coffee. I have researched the brands that are the cleanest, organic, toxin-, pesticide- and mold-free, etc., and I add-in things to make it even better!

Ain’t that the truth, mommas?! Something about brewing a cup of coffee and drinking it in the silence, dim-light, reading a book before the kids wake up … it is GLORIOUS!!

My husband and I use two different methods when brewing coffee, though he will use mine occasionally, too. I use the AeroPress, which is my favorite way! We actually have TWO AeroPress coffee maker’s – which is nice because he doesn’t have to wait for my coffee and vice-versa.

I use one rounded scoop of my coffee of choice, either Bulletproof coffee or Clean coffee. I add boiling water, stir, add the filter to the lid and put the “lid” on and flip it over my coffee mug. I let it sit for about 2-5 minutes, then press and that’s it! Now I add the goodies!!

To my coffee, I add one scoop of Truvani’s marine collagen, about a tablespoon of coconut oil plus a good splash of organic coconut milk. Then I use my handy dandy frother and blend it up!

Now, that first cup of coffee is like a “good morning” cup – warm and welcoming me to another day…it’s the second cup that is my “let’s get down to business” cup. For my second cup, I add yet another scoop of collagen and a splash of coconut milk, but no coconut oil.

Because we don’t like a lot of things on the counter, our AeroPress stays in the pantry, along with all of our coffees, filters, non-refrigerated creamers, collagen, etc. We do keep the traditional coffee maker next to the refrigerator – my hubby uses our Ninja programmable coffee maker usually every weekday morning and brews his own cup of coffee. But we don’t have a “fancy” space or anything like that 😉 Just your basic coffee maker on the counter! And I didn’t even clean it up for you or remove the sanitizer, ether. You’re welcome…and sorry, Pintrest! 😉

Well that is it for January’s Let’s Look! How do you take your coffee? What is your favorite coffee brand?

Here’s what is coming up the rest of the year:

If you blog, make sure to link up with us and don’t forget to subscribe!

Have a wonderful, caffeinated day my friends!

You Might Like:

What’s Up Wednesday: December 2020

Happy LAST Wednesday of 2020!!! WE MADE IT! It’s the last Wednesday of the month – my What’s Up Wednesday post – where I link up with Mix and Match Mama and share all the things! It’s a little food, … Read More

Peppermint Matcha Smoothie

I LOVE peppermint! And combine that with the energy boost and health benefits of matcha – I’m in! This is my go-to winter smoothie recipe for breakfast or lunch. I use 1/2 tsp of peppermint (because I’m addicted!) … Read More

Sugar-Free Pumpkin Cream Coffee

I was a DIEHARD Starbucks fan and when they released their pumpkin cream cold-brew…I was smitten! Now, I am a hot-coffee fan so the only thing that bugged me was that it was cold…BUT living in Texas, it’s … Read More


Peppermint Matcha Smoothie

I LOVE peppermint! And combine that with the energy boost and health benefits of matcha – I’m in!

This is my go-to winter smoothie recipe for breakfast or lunch. I use 1/2 tsp of peppermint (because I’m addicted!) but adjust yours as needed (start with 1/8 tsp and go up from there to your liking).

Peppermint Matcha Smoothie

Ingredients:

Directions:

Throw everything into your high power blender and blend away! Sip and enjoy your peppermint protein pick-me-up!

Did you make this recipe?

Tag #lifestylewithlauren on Instagram!


Homeschool Check-In: Week 25

We made it to the second semester!!

We are just 10 weeks away from finishing the school year and here are my reflections thus far:

Sonlight is a great curriculum to start the homeschool journey and I like that it is clearly labeled and defined as well as a Christian curriculum.

Even though I have loved Sonlight (and used the kindergarten curriculum to prepare my son for public kinder and then 1st grade curriculum this year as we started our homeschool journey), I will not be using it next year.

I feel like we just need something more. More in-depth, more digging-deep, just more. So for my sons 2nd grade year, which we will start probably in July of 2021, I have picked The Good and the Beautiful curriculum. It seems like it is more of a college-like schedule, where we will have ‘A’ days and ‘B’ days, with math and Bible everyday. I am still not sure what I will teach on what days, but I have picked this for my sons second grade year:

Language Arts: Level 2 with Handwriting Workbook: Level 2

History Course Set: Year 2 with the History Read-Aloud Book Pack: Year 2

Science Units: Paleontology (future release) and Marine Biology

Math Course Set: Level 2

Bible: We will read daily and my son will complete his second Write the Word kids journal

I am also debating purchasing a little keyboard/piano so both my boys can have music time. In addition, we will continue with our KiwiCo monthly boxes for a little extra enrichment.

Let me just say, Sonlight was great to get my feet wet with homeschooling full-time. It guided me and set the tone for how to work our days; however, at this point (now more than half-way through), I feel like it is lacking that spark. I just sit and read and I feel like my son isn’t being challenged enough to really THINK and DO. I am excited for this new curriculum and what we will all will learn on this homeschooling journey.

Are you homeschooling for the 2021-2022 school year? Share below!


Friday Favorites: Peloton Classes!

Yup – I am one of those people now! A Pelotoner, a peloperson, a pelorider … whatever you want to call it – I AM HERE FOR IT!

I ordered my Peloton when they were on “sale” (I say that loosely because it was still an investment) because the new model was coming out and it finally was delivered on October 15, 2020 (yes, I actually remember the day!).

I jumped on immediately and did a 30 minute Britney Spears ride with Cody and it was INCREDIBLE! Man, it really reminded me how much I love riding and how much I missed it!

I use to take spin classes at the local gym YEARS ago, before kids, and never got back into it. Then after starting my job and being in quarantine far too long, I decided it was high time to invest in myself, my health, and my sanity! 😉 And I am SO GLAD that I did!

Since October 15th (and writing today on January 7th), I have completed 103 workouts: 63 cycling classes ; 17 strength classes; 7 mediations; 7 yoga sessions, 6 stretching classes, 2 bootcamps and 1 cardio class. I have hit a 13-week streak and have done 12 consecutive workout days thus far, earning me the 10-week and 10-day streak badge.

You can tell where I live on the Peloton 😉

The bike and the classes are just so much fun! Yes it is hard at times but it is just so much fun!I love the music, the beat, the instructors – all of it! But I specifically pick my classes based on the music, then I look to the instructor.

My favorite instructor is Jess King and The Jess King Experience is my fav! I also love Emma Lovewell, Robin Arzon and Cody Rigsby. Jess King is very motivational and inspirational. She does a lot of motivational talk, which some may not like. Personally, I like it and I honestly don’t hear much because I am listening to the music and focusing on my ride. But she always has a nice mix of sitting and running and her music choice is always great! Emma Lovewell is also so much fun! I love her energy and her music choice as well. Cody is just straight up FUN. He is a hoot to ride with and loves his Britney, much like myself 😉

Here are just some of my favorite cycle classes:

Rides:

I would list EVERY Jess King Experience but that would be too much! I didn’t add them in this list but they are by far my favorite and every single one of them is so fun!

Cool-down ride:

This cool down ride is a MUST! Sam is wonderful, calming, very “zen” if you will and I just love this quick cool down ride after all of my intense rides.

Post-ride stretch:

Leanne Hainsby is just fun to listen to! I love her British accent and for this class, we listen to a Prince song while stretching and I love it!

Every ride I have taken, I have loved! Well … there were a couple that weren’t hitting it for me, but I am VERY picky about the music matching the tempo/speed of the beat and one of the classes I took just didn’t line up and another I wasn’t digging the music – but both I still did it and completed the ride, so it was definitely better than NOT riding.

Do you have a Peloton? If so, drop your handle below and let’s ride together!

Next time I will share my top 10 reasons why I love my bike, so be sure to subscribe so you can catch that blog post when it comes!

That’s it for now! I hope you all have a wonderful Friday and weekend!

Many blessings!

Use my code TY9FE5 for $100 towards accessories (like bike shoes, cages, mat, etc.) at purchase.


Why We Turned Down HGTV

Who would turn down an HGTV remodel show?!? Well, we did, sadly. First let’s back up and recap what all happened …

Back in June of 2020, I was scrolling on television websites looking for shows that could help me in my hunt for my DNA siblings and father, which led me to look on HGTV. It was late and this was my last website to check. I saw there was a new remodel show that was looking for participants. Homeowners had to be within 30 miles of a specific city in the North Texas region (check), didn’t want to do any demolition (check), and needed more ascetic upgrades and organizational help (check!). I thought about it and decided I would take some pictures of our home and send it in an email in the morning. Why not?!

The next morning I woke up and at 7am and I took some pictures of our home, typed up a quick email detailing all the requirements that were needed in the email and sent it around 7:30am. I went about my morning routine and really didn’t give it much thought. I didn’t even tell my husband! I thought we would never get selected and it was just a wild, spur-of-the-moment thing.

I loaded up the kids in the car because we were headed to my friends house and as we were entering my friends neighborhood, I got a call from an unknown number. This was around 10am, just a few hours I submitted my email. And yup … you guessed it! It was casting from HGTV! I about dropped the phone! Talk about a fast turnaround! The sweet lady told me that they loved my pictures and our story and would like to formally “meet” us via Skype later that day. She also asked me to make an MTV-like Cribs-style video once I got home and text it to her, including what I liked in the space and what I would like to change.

I now needed to tell my husband. Haha!

And weirdly enough, that same day I saw a post from The Rambling Redhead, whom I follow on Instagram, where she shared that she was the new designer for a new no-demo show for HGTV!

Y’all! I was GIDDY! It all started coming together – SHE would be the designer and I LOVED her style and was so thrilled and knew she would do a fantastic job and totally trusted her!

Once I got home, I quickly filmed little home video tours and texted them to the HGTV casting person, and just an hour or so later my husband and I were positioned in our kitchen, Skyping with the shows producer. He recorded our little Q&A session, made a short teaser reel of it and sent it off to the big producers in New York. He told us we would hear something in the next few days and we more than likely would be “green-lit” for production, meaning we would be set to film and move forward in the show process.

Talk about a crazy day! From emailing, Skyping and possible approval, all in one day!

Reality started to set in as my husband and I sat down and really (and I mean REALLY) discussed what we were signing up for. Aside from the fact that we would have to spend our own money (and we’re talking BIG thousands of dollars), we would also have to move out of our home for 3-4 weeks during the remodel. Not to mention that only three rooms could be touched for the show, and we wouldn’t know about any of it! We could share our style preferences, what we liked and what we didn’t and so forth, but other than that, we wouldn’t know anything! So what would we do about the remainder of the house that wouldn’t be touched? What if we didn’t like something they picked? How much money are we really taking about and where would the money go? These were all questions that we wouldn’t know answers to for a few months.

About two weeks later we got a call that we were officially green-lit for the show and would be set to film! But we still didn’t have any answers about where our money was going. We wanted a break down of the cost (like ALL of it – how much for cabinets, paint, trim, fixtures, etc.). For weeks we were told the breakdown is coming and that they were still working on stuff. Then based on our house and the floors, we would need to allot more money to the project – about 10k more. At this point, we really wanted to know where all of this money was going but we still didn’t have any clear answers.

Fast forward to the mid-October when we FINALLY had a date and a time to meet with the crew, the designer and walk them through the house. I was so excited to meet Jen as well as everyone else! I kind of fangirled a little when she walked in 😉

We walked them through the house, talked about the rooms to be remodeled (again, only three but we mainly talked about the kitchen, nook/dining space, office and master bath). We then went outside and played with the boys while they walked back through and discussed more of the design plan. Now remember that this is a show, so they want a storyline – so for us, they wanted to design and renovate the kitchen, nook/dining space and the kids playroom (that would become our office with a nice built-in shelf). I get the shows point-of-view – the office would be a better choice than the master bath because they can talk about how COVID had forced us to work from home and we needed a better workspace – I get it. But from our perspective, we are now not redoing our master bath so that might be something we have to do at another time (because let’s be honest – a “new” remodeled kitchen would be amazing but if the bathroom looks “old” and out-of-style, how would that sell later if we decided to sell our home in a few years?). These are all of the things we were thinking about and considering and it was really overwhelming.

A few days later we FINALLY got the breakdown of cost and talked it over with the budget/finance guy. He was really sweet and took the time to walk us through it all and was ok with switching the office for our master (but that would also mean more money). He was really kind and assured us that this is OUR remodel, our home, our money and ultimately we can make the call on that stuff, so that was very reassuring (but we still wouldn’t know specific details because that is part of the surprise of the show). We talked about keeping our cabinets instead of ripping them out in order to keep costs down – but we were still looking at around $40k just for three rooms (not including floors). We thanked him for his time and effort but we needed a day or so to talk things over. But we felt the pressure to quickly make a decision because they wanted to film us the following week!

After much conversation, prayer, talking to friends and other close relator friends, we decided to pass on HGTV’s ‘No Demo Reno’ show.

Not going to lie – I was kind of heartbroken! I REALLY wanted a new kitchen (haha!) and how many people can say they were on a remodel show for HGTV?!? But aside from all of that, I know it was the best decision for our family. Yes, it would’ve been cool and exciting and I would have my dream kitchen, but we could use that money elsewhere and make little updates ourselves and save a ton of money. Not to mention my husband has no desire to be on TV 😉 However, I would’ve loved that! Haha!

Haha! In all seriousness, I truly know that we made the right choice. It was just not the wisest choice for us and after talking with our relator and a few others, we realized that we would never recoup the cost that we would’ve put in, since we already have granite in the kitchen and large 18-inch square tile throughout … that and more just didn’t justify the cosmetic personal decor-type changes that we would’ve made with the show. Jen and her crew were nothing but sweet to us and I appreciate their time and effort! In the meantime, we are almost done repainting our house, my husband has replaced a few lights with can lights, he swung the kitchen nook light to the middle of the room and he made a big dining table to go in the space (the room was two separate spaces: a sunroom and nook that really works best as one big dining space). We still need to replace a few light fixtures, finish painting and one day replace the carpets – but that’s all that we are going to do! Maybe repaint the cabinets one day but not sure. 😉

But you know I’ll be front and center watching ‘No Demo Reno’ when it airs in the spring!


We Started a Book Club!!

I am thrilled to share with you that my dear friend, Kari, and I have decided to launch a virtual Facebook book club called Mothers in Minivans Reading Books!!

If you’ve never watched Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee, first, go watch it; second, our title is a spoof of that as we are two minivan-driving mommas that are squeezing in time to read more this year – and it may just happen while we are in our minivans!

Kari and Lauren are friends that connected in a MOPS groups many moons ago and are both working moms with a passion for reading.

Couple of things:

  1. You don’t have to be a mother to join but no boys are allowed (sorry fellas!)
  2. You don’t have to have a minivan and we won’t judge your lack of style for not having one 😉
  3. We will read a variety of books – goal is to read one a month (or two).

We’ll decide on a title, have a spot to discuss throughout reading and host a live at the end of the book to debrief on it together! We have few rules so everyone can get the most out of our book talks:

  1. NO SPOILERS! If you want to discuss spoilers, leave a comment asking to PM with someone else who has finished the book, etc.
  2. The Facebook group is for the discussion of books only. We will remove any non-pertinent comments/discussion, as we want this to be a space only for book club chat!
  3. Please be respectful and kind to one another. We will remove anyone from the group that doesn’t abide by these very simple rules. We want this to be fun and enjoyable for everyone!

We just announced our first book of the year and I am thrilled to share that we are going to read…drum roll please…

Lydia Quixano Pérez lives in the Mexican city of Acapulco. She runs a bookstore. She has a son, Luca, the love of her life, and a wonderful husband who is a journalist. And while there are cracks beginning to show in Acapulco because of the drug cartels, her life is, by and large, fairly comfortable.

Even though she knows they’ll never sell, Lydia stocks some of her all-time favorite books in her store. And then one day a man enters the shop to browse and comes up to the register with a few books he would like to buy—two of them her favorites. Javier is erudite. He is charming. And, unbeknownst to Lydia, he is the jefe of the newest drug cartel that has gruesomely taken over the city. When Lydia’s husband’s tell-all profile of Javier is published, none of their lives will ever be the same.

Forced to flee, Lydia and eight-year-old Luca soon find themselves miles and worlds away from their comfortable middle-class existence. Instantly transformed into migrants, Lydia and Luca ride la bestia—trains that make their way north toward the United States, which is the only place Javier’s reach doesn’t extend. As they join the countless people trying to reach el norte, Lydia soon sees that everyone is running from something. But what exactly are they running to?

Goodreads

This book is an Oprah Book Club pick and is highly rated by many other readers, bloggers, newspapers and magazines and we cannot wait to read it with you! 2021 is starting off strong with an incredibly good book!

To purchase the book, click HERE or the image above, and don’t forget to join our Facebook group HERE.

Let’s pledge to read more in 2021!


Friday Favorites: My BIGGEST Best of Amazon 2020 Recap!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!

It is FINALLY 2021!! Holy cow! It’s a new year and my first post for 2021…so why not a recap of some of our favorite gifts that we received, gifted, and bought for ourselves this past year. So without further ado – let’s dive in to my BEST of Amazon!!

1. Snap Circuits 2. Play-Doh Noodle Makin Mania Set 3. Mellisa & Doug See & Spell 4. The Action Bible 5. Crazy Forts 6. VEX Robotics HEXBUG 3 Pack Bundle Kit 7. Hedbanz 8. Smithsonian Motor-Works 9. Discovery 2-in-1 World Globe 10. Good Pictures Bad Pictures Jr. 11. Melissa & Doug Vehicles 4-in-1 Wooden Jigsaw Puzzles 12. Nerf N Strike Elite Strongarm Toy Blaster 13. Paw Patrol Dino Rescue Dino Patroller 14. Throw Throw Burrito 15. Fire HD 8 Kids Edition Tablet 16. Marvel Avengers Action Figures

1. Roll-Up Sink Drying Rack 2. Belgian Waffle Maker 3. Unbleached Large Baking Cups 4. AeroPress Coffee and Espresso Maker 5. Milk Frother 6. Food: What the Heck Should I Cook? 7. Silicone Donut Pan 8. Deliciously Ella Making Plant-Based Quick and Easy 9. Ice Cream Maker 10. 5-Quart Stand Mixer 11. 17-Piece Knife Block Set 12. Stainless Steel 5-Quart Sauté Pan 13. Vitamix Blender 14. Cast Iron Skillet 15. Against All Grain: Delectable Paleo Recipes to Eat Well & Feel Great

1. Essential Oils 2. Epsom Salt 3. Alkamind Daily Minerals Supplement 4. Liquid Vitamin D/K2 5. Essential Oil Diffuser 6. Back and Neck Massager 7. Schisandra Powder 8. Indian Healing Clay 9. Back and Neck Massager 10. Vitamin C 11. Resistance Bands

1. Water Bottle 2. Blue Light Blocking Glasses 3. Dry Shampoo 4. Olaplex Hair Perfector No 3 Repairing Treatment 5. High Waisted Yoga Pants 6. Memory Foam Slippers 7. REVLON One-Step Hair Dryer And Volumizer Hot Air Brush 8. Jade Roller for Face 9. Under Eye Collagen Patch 10. Schick Hydro Silk Multipurpose Exfoliating Dermaplaning Tool 11. My Favorite Body Wash 12. Dry Brushing Body Brush Set 13. Bath Caddy Tray

1. Storage Organizer Case 2. Echo Dot 3. Men’s Razor 4. Traxxas Remote Control Car 5. Bose Noise-Cancelling Headphones 6. Portable Car Vacuum 7. Crocs Men’s Rain Boot 8. Wireless Charger 9. RC Racing Boat 10. Knit Cuffed Beanie 11. Battery Organizer Case 12. Microfiber Towels

There are SO many other gift guides coming at you this year – from tech to teens, for the home and homeschool, and so much more! Keep an eye out for more and don’t forget to subscribe so you don’t miss a thing!

Have a blessed, prosperous, HEALTHY 2021 friends!


My Top 10 Blog Posts of 2020

To end out 2020, I thought it would be fun to look back at the top 10 blog posts of the year. This list is based off of what YOU have read/clicked the most! So let’s take look back at the most read blog posts of 2020:

I Am Not Alone

“Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.”  1 Peter 3:15 (NLT) Searching and searching for something to watch on TV while my youngest napped, frantically trying to find reprieve from the … Read More

What I Eat in a Typical Day

Happy Wednesday friends!! We made it half way through the week! Today I am sharing what my typical day looks like. Since finding Truvani’s plant-based protein powder, my breakfasts have changed to a daily delicious morning smoothie. I LOVE it and it’s so easy first thing in the morning! But … Read More

Welcome to Our Homeschool Adventure!

So many things happening over here in our household as well as in the world. After LOTS of prayer and conversation, we have decided that I will homeschool our oldest son this upcoming school year. We had an absolutely INCREDIBLE first year at our local school! The principal, our son’s teacher … Read More

My Top 4 Favorite Cookbooks

I have been battling systemic candida since November 2019. My diet is very strict and doesn’t allow much wiggle room. I have been living a gluten-free lifestyle for many years, however, trying to kill off candida takes more than abstaining from gluten. Since November of 2019, I have also cut … Read More

Who Is Your Daddy and What Does He Do?

PSA: My husband is an Arnold fan, thus I am an Arnold fan, so I had to throw that GIF in there…and the fiting title for this blog. Love ya, dear! My sweet husband, Stephen, gifted me an Ancestry DNA kit for my birthday a few years ago. To most, this … Read More

Delicious Sugar-Free Fat Bombs

These fat bombs are DA’ BOMB! Haha! No, seriously, they are the perfect sweet treat but also pack a protein punch! All you need is carob powder, coconut oil, almond butter, collagen peptides, and salt. I love using carob powder for many reasons! First and foremost, it is allowed on the … Read More

What is Candida?

My Healing Journey I’ve stated in the past that I have been battling many health issues. One of which is Systemic Candida…that means it is in my blood. Everyone, EVERYONE, has Candida. However, it is contained in the gut and in a good balance. However, as soon as you add antibiotics, … Read More

Human Trafficking is Happening Right Next Door

I was scrolling through Instagram when a story stopped me in my tracks. This was what I read: View this post on Instagram PART 1/2: ⁠ “Emily” was 6 months old when she was advertised for the first time on Craigslist to be raped. ⁠ ⁠ Her middle-class family had a … Read More

Target Homeschool Haul!

I haven’t been inside of Target since March (so I think I got carried away!) Haha! I needed to make a return so decided to go and get a few snack items for our boat outing on Saturday…then walked away with a ton of homeschool items as well! As soon as I … Read More

And the number one post, determined by YOUR website visits is…

I’ve Got Some News!

I have some exciting news to share! Before I share, let’s back up a bit… As I mentioned when I launched the blog, this was something that I had started crafting and working on a couple years ago. I had some posts saved and things written, but never took the plunge … Read More

This was definitely one of my favorite posts and I am so glad that you all celebrated my big news with me!

THANK YOU for subscribing, reading, sharing and loving my little blog. I welcome 2021 with open arms and I pray that you all have a safe and fun evening and a prosperous, healthy new year!

God Bless!


What’s Up Wednesday: December 2020

Happy LAST Wednesday of 2020!!! WE MADE IT!

It’s the last Wednesday of the month – my What’s Up Wednesday post – where I link up with Mix and Match Mama and share all the things! It’s a little food, a little family, a little what we’re doing, a little what we’re watching and a little bit of everything else, all in one post.

So let’s look at December 2020!

WHAT WE’RE EATING THIS WEEK:

Sunday I made a big batch of veggie enchiladas (cheese and regular flour tortillas for the boys; no cheese and Siete almond flour tortillas for me) that will give us leftovers for lunch and dinner Monday, Tuesday I am making a new recipe from Deliciously Ella – her Eggplant Moussaka with leftovers Wednesday, Thursday we’re making homemade pizzas and Friday I am making another new Deliciously Ella recipe – Eggplant Lentil Bolognese.

WHAT I’M REMINISCING ABOUT:

Christmas! I LOVED our special, low-key Christmas! We stayed in PJs all day, watched ALL the Christmas movies, played games, ate too many homemade sweets, and lounged around. It was perfect!

WHAT I’M LOVING:

I am loving Danielle Walker’s Celebrations cookbook this season! I made quite a few of her recipes for Christmas and the week leading up to Christmas, but mostly I am loving her Peppermint Hot Cocoa recipe! I add a little coffee and homemade marshmallows and I’ve got my own healthier Starbucks Peppermint Mocha!

WHAT WE’VE BEEN UP TO:

Well I was busy all last week getting things pre-baked/cooked for Christmas so I wouldn’t have to do much on Christmas Day; we finalized and sent the January issue of Frisco STYLE to the printer; we started back with homeschool work Monday and started week 23 out of 35 so we are getting closer to the end (!); and trying to squeeze in some reading here and there. I finished these two books just before Christmas:

and working on finishing this one:

I am also working on blog posts for the New Year and just doing the everyday mom things! 😉

WHAT I’M DREADING:

Not so much dreading, but sad Christmas is over. It always comes so fast and goes so fast. Even though I treasured every minute leading up to it – it just goes in a blink! So I am having a little post-Christmas blues and sad to put the tree away … but also looking forward to it because my house will be clean again! 😉 It’s a bunch of mixed emotions over here!

WHAT I’M WORKING ON:

Blog posts, February issue of Frisco STYLE, getting March article ideas generated, homeschooling and trying to carve out some time to work on my book. I think I have a better idea of how I want my book to be written, thus I have a lot of re-working and re-organizing to do, but text-wise, my book is about 60-70% complete. Still trying to figure out how I want to go about publishing (any ideas and personal experiences are much appreciated!).

WHAT I’M EXCITED ABOUT:

Photo by Alex Fu on Pexels.com

Stephen and I have made some short-term and long-term goals and we are working towards those. I am excited to see how it all pans out and praying for God’s provision and guidance, as some of these goals/dreams are pretty big!

WHAT I’M WATCHING/READING:

As stated above, I am reading the second book in the Winter Street collection, but next on my cue is American Dirt and The Daniel Dilemma.

We have finished ALL the series it seems, the latest being Queens Gambit, but we anxiously await Wednesday nights to watch The Challenge! We love the Challenge and so glad it’s back!

WHAT I’M LISTENING TO:

You know I love podcasts and currently listening to the Moms Struggling Well podcast, but I also ask Alexa everyday to play ‘Hallelujah’ by Carrie Underwood and John Legend…it is magical!

WHAT I’M WEARING:

Pajamas…alllll daaaaay.

Haha! Seriously, I am wearing pajamas most of the day and only change when I am going to leave the house or ride the Peloton. Otherwise – it’s pajamas!

WHAT I’M DOING THIS WEEKEND:

Editing! February articles will start coming in this weekend and early next week so I will be editing those plus we will be packing up Christmas.

WHAT I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH:

Everything! Haha! It is a new month and a new year and lots to look forward to! January means we are THAT much closer to warmer weather and summer boating! 😉 Haha!

WHAT ELSE IS NEW:

The day after Christmas we drove around to look at Christmas lights and we made sure to see the house that was filmed for the ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’ … it was crazy! There were people directing traffic plus cones all down the street to keep people from parking in neighbors driveways. It was nuts! 10,000 of the lights were actually hot glued to the house but in all, there were 70,000 lights! It was a perfect ending to Christmas!


    December is a wrap! How was your month? Share below!

    Have a blessed rest of the year!


    Smoky Mountain Tennessee: Part 4 (Days 7 & 8)

    Day 7: Middle Prong Trail; The Sinks

    Just two months behind in posting…that’s totally normal, right?!

    Haha! Sorry that I have completely fallen off the blogging wagon BUT I am slowly getting back into it again…but I have to start where I left off and post our FINAL full day in Tennessee. Looking back at these pictures, I miss Tennessee so, so much! It was by far my favorite place.

    On this last full day, we hit up the Middle Prong Trail, which wasn’t too far from our cabin. This was our longest hike that we did and spent all day on the trail. We even almost made it to the Appalachian Trail! 😉 We debated continuing but we also didn’t want to completely wear out the kids because we had to turn around and hike back 😉 We hiked three miles in and three miles out. And the kids made it without much complaining! They were excellent sports and enjoyed the hike as much as we did.

    I mean, how could you NOT love this place?!?
    I just looks like a fairytale!

    After our long hike, we stopped at Wild Bear Tavern for and early dinner and then walked briefly around The Sinks and checked it out. The kids got in for a chilly minute and then we dried off and headed back to the cabin to pack.

    Staring contests with sunglasses is not fair! 😉

    We will miss our cabin in the mountains!

    Day 8: Travel Day

    Not much exciting today! We woke up at 5:30am, packed the last few things and ate breakfast, and was on the road home at 6:45am (Tennessee time). We didn’t stop anywhere “fun” on the way home but did stretch our legs and made the boys do a few “races” at our stop at ‘Interstate 40 Solar Farm Information and Welcome Center.’

    Thank you, Tennessee, for a wonderful time! We WILL be back!

    Smoky Mountain Tennessee: Part 3 (Days 5 & 6)

    Day 5: Tail of the Dragon; Fontana Dam; Tom Branch Falls Wednesday, September 30, 2020 This, by far, was one of my favorite days! We spent over four hours in the car but it was so much fun! It was one of those drive, stop and see, drive, stop and see kind of days. We … Read More

    Smoky Mountain Tennessee: Part 2 (Days 3 & 4)

    Day 3: Grotto Falls; Place of a Thousand Drips; Smoky Mountain Alpine Coaster Monday, September 28, 2020 Another gorgeous morning in the mountains! Seriously the BEST VRBO we have stayed in! We decided to hike Grotto Falls and it was a much easier hike than the previous day (to see Part 1 of my recap, … Read More

    Smoky Mountain Tennessee: Part 1 (Days 1 & 2)

    I should forward this with a note that this was a trip…not a vacation…because let’s be real…if the kids are going, it’s a trip! 😉 Haha! We were told that from a friend a few years ago and it always stuck with us because it is so true!! You can’t fully relax with kids in … Read More