Don’t Let the Holidays Knock You Off Your Rocker!

I love the holiday season when there’s so much going on, and we can spend time with our friends and family: Christmas concerts, Christmas lights, decorations, holly, hot chocolate, presents, crackling fires, Christmas music, caroling. I feel giddy just thinking about it! But, also a little stressed . . .   From Halloween to Thanksgiving and Christmas, we all get to have a lot of fun together. However, if we are not careful, all the fun of the season can get lost in the chaos and details. Although I try to stay positive, there’s no avoiding the fact that things can get very … Read more…

Thankful Thursday–A Linkup

This week I am co-hosting a linkup with my solidarity sister, Charlene, a blogger at From Bisons to Buckeyes. And I am SO excited about it! Every last Thursday of the month she co-hosts a linkup called Thankful Thursday. Tonight, I am thankful for so many things. My mind is flooded with blessings. But as I sit down to write, I have my sweet, sleeping daughter curled up at my side, and our dog Hazel cozied down by us with her head resting on my leg. Poor Hazel has had a hard time adjusting since Rebekah was born. She went … Read more…

A Fall Sweater and Mr. Ed’s Hat

I have been working on a fall sweater for Rebekah that I hope will keep her cozy as the temperature starts to drop. Though I have to admit I have not had much time to work on it. Fortunately, when we drive to church, I bring it along to get in a couple rows since it is a 20-30 minute drive. These fall colors have been in my yarn stash for awhile because I originally bought them for a blanket that didn’t happen. But I am enjoying putting them to use now. If I get the hang of sweaters, I … Read more…

Ideas for Making Your Kitchen Family Friendly

(This is a guest post by Beth Holmes, an Engaged Home contributor. It includes affiliate links.) I spend a lot of time in the kitchen each evening, cooking dinner for myself and my family. Being a busy mom means that sometimes it feels like I get very little time with my family. That’s why I like to encourage them to chat with me while I’m cooking dinner. Many kitchens are anything but family friendly, which can make chatting while you cook difficult. However, by making a few simple changes to the design of your kitchen, you can change that. To … Read more…

Introducing Charlene, My Solidarity Sister

One of my favorite parts of blogging is the online community that is formed by both readers and fellow bloggers. It has blessed me far more than I ever imagined! I just wish I had more time to read and follow blogs, because there are so many fantastic men and women sharing advice, insight, humor, and quite simply put, life.  This past month I had the awesome opportunity to find a “solidarity sister” through the blogosphere. A blogging friend, Susannah from Simple Moments Stick, began this unique opportunity to connect with other bloggers, make a friend, and grow your blog. Susannah … Read more…

The Joyfully Empowered Summit

Do you ever have opportunities come along that surprise you, make you feel honored to be thought of, super excited, and yet incredibly nervous?  Well I just had one of those fantastic opportunities come my way! After discovering The Engaged Home, Kristine Farley contacted me about participating in The Joyfully Empowered Summit that she is hosting November 9th through the 21st. Kristine Farley has such an amazing heart for families with special needs children, and moms in general. It was an honor to be able to take part in her telesummit. And, as a new mom, I am thrilled to … Read more…

Top Christmas Presents for the Pet Lover in Your Life

I would wager that we all know at least one major animal lover. You may even be one. Our dog Hazel has a special place in our family–though she would probably tell you that she feels displaced since Rebekah was born. Just for fun we like to put up a special “Hazel stocking” at Christmas that we fill with treats and maybe a chew toy or bone. Over the past four years that Hazel has been a part of our family we have received many great Hazel presents ranging from special treats for her, to light-up leashes, to framed pictures of her from … Read more…

The Importance of Superheroes for Children and Teens

  I am excited to share Tracey’s post today! The Clay household enjoys Batman. So much so that I made Rebekah a Batman outfit. 🙂  By Tracey Clayton Superheroes track the bad guys relentlessly through the sky and defend the innocent against injustice, all without ever revealing their true face. Whether they are called Superman, Batman or Spider-Man, our kids love them. But why are superheroes so fascinating to the youngsters? How do they help them grow? Why Do Children Need Superheroes? The superhero is an ideal, an aspiration, a goal, and that is an excellent moving force for children as well as … Read more…

11 Foods to Eat While Pregnant

Confession: I felt healthier while pregnant than I normally do. This was because I wanted to give Rebekah the very best nutrition possible and take care of my body so it would be in good shape for labor and nursing. I did a lot of research into what to eat and what to avoid while pregnant. I had sweet and smart friends who freely shared their wisdom. And my husband was awesome about cooking healthy foods for us. So when Julie Roy contacted me about sharing her information on healthy pregnancy foods, I was excited to pass on this excellent information. … Read more…

Creating a Happy and Safe Home

(This post is by Liam Thomas, an Engaged Home contributor. It contains affiliate links.) ****Nathana: I am so excited to share these tips with you for a couple reasons: 1) Because as a new mom, creating a safe home environment is crucial. I want Rebekah to be able to function is all environments, but I do believe in protecting her from things that could seriously harm her. 2) My husband still remembers the year his childhood Christmas was ravaged by a robbery. He still protests to putting a Christmas tree in front of the window, because he thinks it invites in robbers.  Part of … Read more…

TLC for Your Garden

(This is an Engaged Home contributor post. It includes affiliate links.) Having a garden is a real added bonus for any family home. Not everybody has a lot of outside space included with their property. Some people don’t want a garden at all because they can be quite hard to maintain. Whether a flower garden or vegetable garden, gardening with children can be a great learning opportunity for them! Looking after a larger yard isn’t always something you want to tackle on your own, though. Keeping a large lawn in good condition certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted! If you look for … Read more…

DIY Bible Box with Supplies From the Dollar Tree

Rebekah loves Bible class. I started dropping her off when she was only three months old. I honestly didn’t know how she would do, but she adores it! Sweet teachers, Bible songs and rhymes, and objects to grab and play with make it a fun experience for her. (I’m sure she will go through separation anxiety at some point, but for now she loves going to class.) I genuinely believe that babies can learn a lot more than we give them credit for. So, why not start teaching them about the most important thing: The fact that God made them and loves them!  … Read more…

The Best Ways to Keep Bugs Out of the House

I love living in Missouri. Minus the spiders. I hate spiders. Like a lot. The place we are currently renting has old windows, bad sealing around the doors, and numerous unsealed cracks and crevices inside. You know what can sneak through any crack or crevice . . . spiders. Bleck. First off, let me clarify that we are clean! This is not a dirty/messy house situation. However, we do have brown carpet that many spiders blend right into, which makes me slightly paranoid at times. But after several unpleasant confrontations, (I drowned a big black spider in dawn dish soap. Wasteful. And not … Read more…

Gift Ideas for New Moms

Whether you’re a mom yourself or not, choosing a gift for someone who has a new baby can be challenging. The main problem is that most new moms will receive almost everything that they need for the baby at their baby shower. So you have to think outside the box when it comes to post-birth gifts. Here are a few tips and gift ideas to take note of: Personalized Presents   So the new mom has everything that she needs, but there are still plenty of things you can get her. Some of the best presents I received when my little one was born … Read more…

How to Breathe New Life Into Your Bedroom

I love our bedroom. It is where we connect, relax, cuddle, and enjoy sweet, sweet sleep! Oftentimes we end up sharing our bed with our dog and daughter. We call this phenomenon family bed. As much as we love cuddling, reading, and enjoying family bed before Rebekah goes to sleep, we are trying to regain our bedroom by crating our dog at night (which she hates), and encouraging Rebekah to sleep on her own. Just for the record, she does a good job and we rarely co-sleep. Some nights I am just really tired and she really wants to be close … Read more…