Pregnancy Life Savers

As I am well into my third trimester of pregnancy, I am frantically trying to get everything done. The spring cleaning, the many sewing and crocheting projects, the nursery, projects for Rebekah, and yes, enjoying times of sleep and rest because they will be few and far between soon. Some days it leaves me a bit dizzy and exhausted. If I don’t pace myself, I find that I don’t actually accomplish anything. My mind simply races with everything. Which is exhausting in its own way. So I am working on simplification and focus. What doesn’t get done won’t kill me. Right? Mitch and … Read more…

A Cute Combo and a Great Deal

A couple weeks ago we drove down to Springfield for our nephew’s first birthday. Though sadly, he got sick so his parents delayed plans. I don’t know about your neck of the woods, but here in Missouri the cold and flu season hit hard. My sister-in-law asked for books for boys, since their daughter is into princesses and the like, they wanted to make sure they had some quality boy books for our nephew. And if you know me at all, you know buying books is one of my favorite things to do! So I set about looking for a fun, … Read more…

A Practical Home Education

Most people think of home education as homeschooling. And yes, it can be one and the same. But home education is so much broader. It encompasses what we teach our children about everyday kindness, how to follow Jesus, responsibility with chores, and home and car upkeep. You should strive for a practical home education for your child, whether you homeschool or not. So many of us graduate high school and move out of our parents’ house without much of the needed knowledge for adulthood. Now, while I agree experience is the best teacher–there are so many home projects and practical … Read more…

3 Easy DIY Valentine Crafts

Heart Journal: Super easy to make! We made these as prayer journals at a girls’ devo this past year. 🙂 2. Heart Mug: This is similar to the journal, but on a mug! 🙂 By the way, you can often get cute journals and white porcelain mugs at the Dollar Tree! (credit to Today’s Creative Life) 3. Heart Painting: I took this heart sticker/paint marker idea and applied it to a painting idea I had. Rebekah and I were talking about the color blue, and since she loves to paint, I decided she could help me with this craft. I put … Read more…

Where’d My Baby Go?

I turned what was going to be a fall sweater for Rebekah into a spring sweater. After a few attempts, I finally finished it. And once I got the right sizing, it only took me a couple days to make it. But looking through these pictures made me realize how much Rebekah has grown since her fall sweater last year! Time moves so swiftly these days. Every day she is learning something new and her vocabulary is expanding exponentially. She still has her quizzical blue eyes and expressive faces. And her personality has been the same since day one. She is … Read more…

Our Snowy Day

***This post contains Amazon Affiliate Links at no extra cost or obligation to you. We only share products we love or have on our own personal wishlist. It does not cost you a cent extra to buy through our link, but if you do buy anything on Amazon through our link, it greatly helps us out! 🙂 Snow days and nostalgia: no school, sleeping in, tromping through the snow, sledding with friends, and warming up with a mug of hot chocolate. To most kids, snow days equate to bliss. I still remember sledding the hill by my middle school, and of … Read more…

Easy and Free DIY Gift Tags–Not Even a Printer Required!

If you are like me, you LOVE after-Christmas sales. These sales allow me to stock up on almost everything I need as far as wrapping and decor for the next year. However, it is not too often I come across new gift bag tags. That, combined with my love of Christmas card art led me to make my own DIY gift tags. I hate it when I’ve already used tags on a gift bag. Before I started creating these tags, I resorted to putting stickers on the bags. This means the following year I am trying to find a sticker tag the … Read more…

January: Be the Gift

Noise. Busyness. Negative media. Bad news. Disasters. Suffering. Sickness. Financial crisis. Personal struggles. All these things fill our world at large and often our personal worlds. If I’m not careful, these things easily overwhelm me. But, if there is anything the past several months have taught me, especially through a fear-packed election cycle and a year where so many people I know have struggled through grief, it is this: What we do matters.  As we enter into this new year–2017–we have a choice. Really, we have a choice every minute of every day. We can allow fear and worry and busyness to overwhelm … Read more…

10 Simple DIY Presents for Christmas

One of the ways I make our tight Christmas budget stretch is by making many of our Christmas presents. I told myself I would scale back on how much I was making. And well, I had the best of intentions . . . Let’s just say that I need to set aside some serious sewing and crocheting time over the next couple weeks! 1. DIY Cookies in a Jar from Raining Hot Coupons 2. 15-minute Pillowcase by Craftsy Who doesn’t love a fun and funky pillowcase?! 3. Simple Crocheted Hat (any size) by Oombawkadesign Many family members requests my simple beanie hats at Christmas. … Read more…

A Missouri Heat Wave

I kept spotting glimpses of fall in the turning of leaves and feeling it in the cool mornings and evenings. But this week pounded us with the resurgence of an Indian Summer heat wave. I even considered getting back out the wading pool. It feels odd to be crocheting on leg warmers and a winter hat when our heat index is pushing 100. But I found such easy and lovely patterns for leg warmers that I could resist. I made the simple ones for Rebekah to match her hat. But I think I am going to experiment with this pattern and some sparkly … Read more…

A Coloring Experience and Giveaway

We weren’t sure what the teens would think. At least the guys. Teen girls almost always love coloring, but boys tend to be “too cool” for such fun. But our teen guys took to it as readily as the girls. Maybe it was the cool designs that didn’t feel innately girly, like so many generic coloring books. The teens chatted as they chose their medium (colored pencils, crayons, or markers) and decided on a color scheme. Even parents and volunteers joined right in on the fun. The only complaint we received was that we did not give them enough time to finish. … Read more…

Yarn Along: Winter Hat Ready

I tend to be a tight hooker (good ‘ole crochet joke). But this hat I made for a baby fits my 16-month-old daughter just fine. I decided she could keep it as a warm winter hat. She loves wearing it, even in the summer. I have several projects stewing in my mind, including cute leg warmers for little girls and Rebekah’s fall outfit. I would love to knit her outfit, but I doubt I can pick up knitting that quickly. Meanwhile, I am reading through the moving novel Gilead (affiliate link) by Marilynne Robinson. Rooted in Christian spirituality, it was praised with high acclaim, even winning the … Read more…

Motivation

This week I sent off Benjamin’s blanket with a prayer and good wishes. Lately, I’ve had endless motivation to crochet. Mostly because in the evenings I avoided dealing with our taxes. I spent months attempting to resolve the issues with our 1095-A before we could send everything off. (Last night we finally put on our “adult pants” and tackled them. More on that later.) This week I bordered a light-weight receiving blanket for sweet Annabelle, our friends’ new daughter. She is all that is a sweet little newborn. We can’t wait to celebrate her birth at their shower this weekend. If time allows I will crochet … Read more…

For Benjamin

I keep thinking about starting new fall sweater for Rebekah. Yet, all the sweet new babies entering the world and the pregnant mamas that are due in the next couple months are foremost in my thoughts and prayers right now. As a result, I am crocheting around fleece and cotton blankets, and trying my hand at newborn clothing. As I mentioned last week, my dear friend from church embroidered Benjamin’s name for me on his blanket. I kept his blanket simple and cute, crocheting two coordinating receiving blankets together. This is one of my favorite styles of blanket to make because it is … Read more…

Beauty in the Details

This past week has been full of outdoor adventures: Running barefoot through the grass or squealing as we dart through the sprinkler. I lather Rebekah and I with sunscreen every day. We both have very fair skin. And if she is anything like me, the sun will blister her skin long before she ever tans. This Badger Balm Kids Face Stick SPF 35 – Tangerine and Vanilla works great and smells amazing. Though it is a bit hard to rub in. I worried about finding summer sunscreen that would not irritate Rebekah’s sensitive skin. Fortunately, this face stick hasn’t caused a single … Read more…

Excitement All Around

I think this week can be summed up in one word: Exciting. The right house, for the right price opened up for us a couple months ago, and this week we closed on it. It is our first time buying a home, and it is a landmark moment for our family. Owning a home means we get to live somewhere longer than a year and a half. We have moved five times in five years. We are laying down roots. Maybe it won’t be a forever home, but we are anticipating all the memories that will resound within its walls: … Read more…

The New Recipe I am Obsessed With: Miracle Dough

Okay, so I could go on and on about how awesome this year’s Ultimate Homemaking Bundle is and how it is such a great deal. But I won’t. If you’ve checked out the bundle, you will realize that for yourself in seconds. And, to be honest, these bundles are a great value, but sometimes the amount of resources can be overwhelming. So I thought instead I would highlight the ebook that I have gotten the most use out of so far. I have started several of ebooks and one ecourse. It is hard to pick a favorite. I feel like I … Read more…

Six Tips for Caring for a Baby with Sensitive Skin

Out of nowhere, our one-year-old daughter, Rebekah, decided baths were synonymous with torture. Every time we started a bath–she’d start a tantrum. She kept trying to stand up and crawl out of the tub. So not safe! To complicate the bath situation further, she has also been battling mild eczema for the past three months. We just ended the bath standoff this week–hurray! We have successfully had two baths where she didn’t scream or try to escape this week. I think I even saw her smile . . . Switching her bath time to morning or midday when she isn’t tired, like … Read more…

Yarn Along: Thinking of Others This Week

This week I am trying to finish up a couple gifts to mail off to encourage some special people in my life. The first is a hanging towel (I will make a matching dish cloth too) for a blogging friend who got married last year. It will only be a year late, so let’s call it a one-year-anniversary present . . . 😉 When I saw this kitchen towel, I knew it would look great in her kitchen, and it reminded me of them. My aunt has recently undergone some serious surgeries for a bad break in her leg and … Read more…

Gather Around Inspirations: Spring Learning Activities

I need to get outside ya’ll!  Spring is in full swing here, and I love it so much I could just cry with joy! To be fair, I love every season. But when winter turns that corner into spring, I feel consumed with excitement. It is like the whole earth is waking up and unfurling before our eyes after its long winter slumber. The birds are singing all day long, the grass, trees, shrubs, and bushes are all the richest of bright greens, the weather is that perfect 75 degrees with a light breeze, the rain makes everything bloom, the … Read more…

My Blogging Mistake and “The Truth About #MomFail Culture” Free Video Series

Have you ever had one of those days where you know you have reached your limit, but you are determined to press on anyways? Well, I hit that wall on Saturday.  Last Saturday was Rebekah’s birthday. My parents were in town, we were throwing her a birthday party at the park. I was determined to blog about her birth story on her birthday. If I had been more on top of things, I would have prepped the post earlier in the week. But alas dear friends, I did not.  As a result, I was sitting in bed typing away after a fun, but loooong Saturday (Mitch … Read more…

Make Your Home Kid Ready for Summer

With summer right around the corner, most kids will soon have more time on their hands. How can you prepare your home and plan ahead for ideas that will stimulate children’s imaginations and keep them from mischief? With a 12-month-old toddling all over I am trying to answer that questions for myself. After all, we all know what is said about idle hands . . .  I will be talking more about summer activities that engage the family, learning, and creativity over the next few months. But, if you’re wondering how you can make your home more fun for the children, consider these … Read more…

Crocheted Boot Cuffs and the Downside to Spring

As much as I love spring, I am sadly coming to terms with the fact that it probably won’t snow again. New growth is happening everywhere, the birds are singing, and the spiders are becoming active again. In case you don’t know, I am very afraid of spiders. So much so I think I drive Mitch slightly crazy some days. One thing we didn’t consider when frantically trying to find a place to rent last June was that this place is old, the carpet is brown, sealing around doors rotted, the windows ancient, and there are cracks and crevices all … Read more…

Refresh Your Home and Family Calendar for Spring

(This post was contributed by Georgina Parkinson.) Spring has arrived, and it’s the perfect time to reflect on months gone by and look forward to the future. Whether you’re planning a summer of fun or you’re looking to build on discoveries made in the winter, here are some simple tips to create a refreshed, organized home. Out with the Old and in with the New Spring is all about change and new beginnings. It’s arrival is an ideal excuse for a spring clean. Devote a couple of spare afternoons or a weekend to getting rid of any unwanted clutter and giving your home … Read more…

Yarn Along: Imaginative Play

One of my favorite things ever is to watch children imagine, create, and play. Many of my own best childhood memories involve imaginative play. Even now, I like to think I have a healthy and active imagination. 😉 Because I love encouraging imaginative play, I have been creating some whimsical crowns. I made this one for Rebekah, and though it turned out a bit tight, it fits great (I am a tight hooker). I decided to make a couple for my friend’s daughters because they are 3 and 5–the perfect ages for imaginative play! But, because I am a tight … Read more…

Hello and Goodbye, All in One Day

This past week we rejoiced with our family and friends who welcomed sweet baby Blake and Eleanor into their arms. Our friends, Andrew and Sonia, gave birth a sweet baby girl Eleanor. I couldn’t resist making her a couple headbands. Here is the first: I am working on crocheting flowers for another headband (possibly interchangeable flowers) and a flower or two to make into barrettes for her older sister, because older sisters should not be forgotten! Be sure and check out other Yarn Along posts here. Last Friday we made the trek down to Springfield for a quick day trip. … Read more…

The Battle for My Epic Door Collage and How My Parents Encouraged My Self-Expression

The Battle In middle school I started a door collage. A door collage, you wonder . . . . Yes, it was my pre-teen, then teen form of self-expression. I am not sure what motivated me to start. Maybe it was my obsession with Allen Iverson from the 76ers . . . I don’t really follow many sports, but I saw an article about him in my dad’s Sports Illustrated magazine and it spurred a short-lived interest in him and professional basketball. Embarrassingly, his pictures were the first to be taped to my door. (To be fair, I do really enjoy basketball, … Read more…

Hospitality When You Have Young Children

I used to wonder how parents could manage to be hospitable when they were wrangling small kids, constantly picking up toys, wiping noses and bottoms, and trying to maintain children’s sleeping schedules. Fortunately, I have been inspired by many young moms through the years. Currently at church there are several moms who consistently open up their homes for playdates, small groups, bonfires, or other get togethers, despite having young kids. I love that young moms still stretch themselves to be welcoming and hospitable, even if their homes are not perfect or the sliding glass doors have finger prints. Hey, life happens. And … Read more…

If Only Life Came with a Pattern . . . Oh Wait, It Does!

In Psalm 142:3 David proclaims, “When I am overwhelmed, you alone know the way I should turn.” Reading this made me feel both grateful and disappointed. I am thankful that God will breathe strength into our weary hearts and guide us when we are overwhelmed. Still, some days I want a pattern in life to follow that will reveal the finished product. What will the tapestry of my life be? Like the picture on the front of the puzzle box, I want to know how it all fits together. But, oh, how forgetful I can be! God gave us the ultimate pattern to … Read more…

Yarn Along: Finding Beauty and Finishing My Winter Projects

The other day I found myself thinking how all life is poetry if we look close and listen. Even the hard moments. The flecks of color in my cracker, a baby’s cries, dust on the window sill, and the dripping of snow off the house. I am trying to slow down and observe life, especially in the hard moments. There is beauty everywhere, even among pain and tears. Still, it is hard to slow down and see. Though my eyes may be open, my heart is often blind. And some days just don’t get off to a beautiful start. Not because beauty … Read more…

A New Take on Coloring: An Interview with Andrew Miller

Have you ever known someone who has inspired you to be more creative and to pursue your passions?  I have a couple of those people in my life who inspire creativity and courage within my heart simply by their example of embracing creativity and hustling after their goals. One of those people in my life is Andrew Miller. He was a college classmate and friend of mine and one of my husband’s college roommates. (Andrew with his wife Sonia and daughter Anya.) Mitch and I made a point to stay in touch, as much as possible, with Andrew and his wife Sonia after … Read more…

Healthy, Heart-Shaped Pancakes

Rebekah tested low in iron recently, probably because she has been battling off sickness. Regardless, I decided it was time to boost her with some iron-rich foods. She has been more interested in baby purees and finger foods over the past couple weeks. The baby cereals seem to have a lot of iron, but they sometimes feel like filler. It was time to get more creative, so the other day I decided I would try and make pancakes using her baby oatmeal. It’s essentially oat-flour anyways, right? And to make it more fun, I decided to make them heart shaped. Just because … Read more…

The Sickness, Quarantine, and the Delicious Soup I Developed in the Meantime

The Sickness Ugh. Hand, foot, and mouth (HFM) can be a nasty bug to fight off! We thought Rebekah’s strain of it resembled chicken pox more than HFM. Rebekah’s primary doctor is older than he looks and had seen more than the typical pediatrician. Due to this, he had seen chicken pox firsthand (many new doctors have not) and many, many strains of HFM. Even though he was confident it was HFM, he sent pictures of her sores to Dermatology to double check. Right before Rebekah got sick, I wrote about treasuring the moments. Well, few things make you treasure your child’s smiles, … Read more…

Post-Sickness Cleaning Tips

Chores can really pile up. Especially when you have several loads of laundry after a week-long trip. Compound that with your baby coming down with a bad case of hand, foot, and mouth right after you get home. Then you get sick. And you realize you need to sanitize EVERYTHING before your husband gets sick too . . .   Sigh. Thank you for listening to my mini rant. 😉 Things are looking up. I am at least caught up on laundry. However, I am getting ready to make a game plan for the rest of the house. I find that the … Read more…

Our Top Five Favorite Posts of 2015

It is always interesting to look back over the year when on the cusp of a new one. 2015 held more change for us than we could have predicted. Looking back over my posts from 2015, the word transition kept popping up. This was a year of transition. But it was beautiful and wonderful. Due to all the changes, it went by fast. Now, I am trying (hopelessly) to remind myself that tomorrow is January 1st, 2016. As we close out the year, here are our five favorite posts from 2015: Joy Redefined: My Heart Now Resides Outside Itself: The moment Rebekah … Read more…

The 12 Treats of Christmas

Sugar Cookies

I have to admit that I have stressed myself out a bit trying to make a bunch of Christmas treats to share. I keep telling myself to stop, relax, or, you know, finish my Christmas gifts! But, for some reason baking, giving, and frosting cookies is so compelling for me during the Christmas season. I have fond memories of my grandma’s frosted, cut-out sugar cookies and my aunt’s Oreo balls (or truffles). And then after Mitch and I got married, every December we would dip pretzels in chocolate, make cookies, fudge, cocoa, and many other wonderful treats. I hope that … Read more…

The Pattern for Rebekah’s Flower Headband

I never thought I would be the mom that would want to have matching hair bows for my daughter’s outfits. Well, I am. She really doesn’t wear them that often. And she usually pulls them off and makes a toy out of them. But my recent preoccupation with making hair bows probably has less to do with wanting her to wear them, and more to do with how cheap, easy, and fun they are to make. I experimented with fancy ones before she was born. (Note the red and green bows.) But now I find I have one ribbon style I really … Read more…

3 Clever Ideas for a More Child-Friendly Home

As any mom will tell you, children are pros at making a mess. They spill juice, splatter food, and sometimes, even draw on the walls. This leads many parents to think that they can’t have a nice home because their little ones will only mess it up. However, that’s not the case. Children might make a mess, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have a beautiful home. It might be a little harder to keep your house looking good when you have toddlers and young children about, but it is doable.  The key to keeping your home in good shape … Read more…

The Final Reveal: Rebekah’s Fall Sweater

As of Thanksgiving week, I finally finished Rebekah’s fall sweater. It was a really fun and easy pattern to follow, minus all the ends to weave in from changing colors. If anyone has a pro-tip about how to manage those, please let me know in the comments! (Rebekah’s fall sweater pattern is pinned on my Yarn Along Pinterest Board, along with many more crocheted sweater patterns.) (Those teeth . . . She has four coming in on top right now. All things considered, she handles it well. But she has her moments. Does she ever. But my heart goes out to her … Read more…

An Educational Christmas Countdown

    Many of us treasure holiday memories with our families because of unique family traditions. Mitch and I have formed a couple of our own since we got married (5 years ago!!!). We always make homemade pizza on Christmas Eve (or before we go to celebrate with family). We have certain Christmas movies and music albums that we love to listen to (you can check them out in my Amazon store under products that we love). Seriously, if you have not checked out The Star of Bethlehem, do so this year! We watch it every Christmas. I’ve seen it … Read more…

The Ultimate Thanksgiving Roundup

Thanksgiving is around the corner! For most of us anyways. This year we get to celebrate three times! We celebrated with my parents on Monday. We will get together with more family on Wednesday and then on Saturday. Strangely, we have no official plans for Thursday. However, we will be with my husband’s family in Springfield, so I am sure we all will soak up lots of time with grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles. 🙂 In celebration of this time of year, I have compiled some of my favorite recipes, crafts, decor ideas, and lessons. This is the ultimate thanksgiving roundup. Feel free to share your … Read more…

Water Conservation Starts at Home

I am excited to share this post with you, because my husband and I are always looking for ways to lower our bills and save money! Plus, as a clothing-diapering and laundering family, we wash A LOT of diapers. Due to this, saving on our water bill in other areas is important! 😉  Guest Post by Matty Goodwin The time has come to start taking water conservation seriously. Even though I try my hardest every day, it is easy to waste water. I turn on the tap and before I know it I have used more than my fair share. … Read more…

Tips for Creating a Functional Homeschool Space

This is a guest post by Ella Andrews.  Creating your very own homeschool space is not exactly an easy task, since you will need a location to not only hold school, but store your supplies. That being said, you will have a chance to make a lot of great choices both for storage and tutoring purposes, so make use of the following tips to make it work: Make your space more functional and comfortable, ensuring there is enough space to walk between the desks or other furniture. Basements and garages can be good areas to deal with this, especially if you work on them with … Read more…

DIY Baby Pat Mat (Free and Only Takes 3 Minutes to Make)

We are participating in Parents as Teachers, and a couple months ago we learned about this super fun and easy baby pat mat. The best part is that most people already have all the supplies needed to make it!  It is super simple, and if your baby is 3-9 months, chances are they will love playing with it. Plus, it teaches about cause and effect. Talk with you baby about “When you hit it or pat it, what happens? Did that blue piece move? What if you pat it here?” Supplies: water 2 gallon plastic bags (you’ll want to double bag) tinsel or … Read more…

Indoor Activities for Kids During the Cold Winter Months

You’ve probably noticed that over the past few weeks the weather has started to change. Winter is headed our way. When temperatures start to drop and rain becomes more regular, we can no longer spend as much time outside with our families as we would like to. For many parents, this means sticking the kids in front of the television to keep boredom at bay. While a little television is okay, like many moms, I don’t believe in letting kids spend all day in front of a screen. I believe that boredom is not always the enemy–in fact, I believe … Read more…

Avoid Common Engagement Mistakes

I remember vividly the moment I got engaged. I think it’s a moment in your life that you never want to forget. We knew we were going to marry before he proposed, but he still managed to surprise me and make it a wonderful day. He proposed after our college’s annual banquet in the Prayer Chapel on campus. It was a place we both loved. We spent many moments there in prayer about our future. It was perfect, minus being interrupted twice by another college student relocating a dance party. Argh . . . .  (Right after we got engaged.) (Where he proposed.) … Read more…

Quick Tips for Fall Cleanup

***I am excited to share this post today because my husband and I are in the midst of fall cleanup and getting the yard in order! We have several trees and are digging our yard out from under all the leaves. Plus, I am getting ready to rake out and tend to my small garden patches. So, if you are also tending to your yard before the cold of winter sets in, I hope you find these tips useful!  (This post was written by an Engaged Home contributor. It includes affiliate links.) It’s easy to spot the difference in gardens between … 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…

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…

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…

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…

Save Time, Money, and Sanity With My Top Time-Saving Cleaning Tips

Let’s be totally honest, very few people like cleaning their home. But it is unavoidable. You’re going to have to do your fair share of cleaning if you don’t want to live in filth. As a mother and dog owner, it seems like there is always something that needs cleaned. I also like to avoid costly and chemical-filled cleaning products. As a new busy mom with only small gaps of nap time to clean, nap, blog, or relax (gasp!), I’ve learned the importance of organization and streamlining my cleaning routine. The good news is I’ve come up with some techniques to help … Read more…

4 Ideas for Making Your House a Home

Have you ever walked into a house that felt sterile or staged? Those houses always make me feel uncomfortable because I cannot envision the family actually living there. Since our home is where we spend a lot of our family time, and since we are considering homeschooling in the future, we really want to make sure that our home is a comfortable, cozy, and a positive place for Rebekah. Based on that, here are four ways I’ve learned to make a house a home your family can relax in and enjoy: Personalize it: Your home should be filled with things that you want … Read more…

How to Prepare Your Home for a Family Get Together

hosting

Holiday season is right around the corner. For many of us, that means our houses will be full of friends and family. If you’re having a big family get together soon, you need to make sure your home is prepared for it so it is an enjoyable experience for all. Here are five things you can do to get your home guest-ready: Make Sure There’s Enough Chairs When you have people over, finding enough chairs is always a big problem. So, make sure you don’t leave the task of gathering together chairs until the last minute. You don’t necessarily need … Read more…

7 Clever Remodeling Ideas for Your Home by Edna Thomson

https://www.flickr.com/photos/wicker-furniture/8483620469

Photo from Wicker Paradise: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wicker-furniture/8483620469 Are you in the mood for remodeling your home? These clever, fun and functional ideas will get you thinking. Don’t miss out. 1. Store Stuff Under the Stairs The staircase is that weird tool we use to reach the upper floors of our homes. It usually takes up a lot of space. Why not take advantage of it? A clever way to manage your overflowing shelves with books is to place some of them under the stairs. In a word, turn your staircase into a storage area. It can hold a number of items other than your … Read more…

4 Money-saving Tips for Household Cleaning

Nowadays there are a lot of commercial cleaning products that promise to remove all the nasty stains in an effective way. You have a wide range of choices when it comes to detergents and substances that will help you provide an ideal cleaning of all your surfaces. You have probably noticed that such cleaners often tend to be more expensive than you would expect. Many people invest a lot of money in getting the latest cleaning equipment because they want to make their home spotless and more welcoming. But you can accomplish this without buying every new product on the … Read more…

Snack Attack: Customizable Trail Mix

I love trail mix. But I get annoyed with the mass quantities of peanuts found in the store-bought varieties. Plus, with as much as boughten trail mix costs, I want something better than peanuts! (Sorry peanuts, I don’t mean to hate on you.) I always fish through to find the pecans, almonds, cashews, dried fruit, and yes, candy bits. When we lived in Phoenix, there was a store called Win-Co that had a fabulously cheap bulk foods section. I would go there and pick out all of the trail mix fixins’ that I wanted. No peanuts. Just the good stuff. It … Read more…

Snack Attack! Green Apples and Yogurt

A couple weeks ago my in-laws took us out to Cheddars for my birthday. In an attempt to be healthy, I took a chance and ordered the apples and yogurt as one of my sides. I was apprehensive because I am not a huge fan of yogurt, at least on its own or as a dip. While I was eating, I had two thoughts: 1. Wow! I actually like this. The yogurt is incorporated well . . . I might even love this!  2. I could totally make this myself . . .  And so, a couple days later, I set … Read more…

5 Tips for Exercise and Healthy Living for Busy Moms

Hi ladies! I get asked a lot about how to get your workouts in when you’re a busy mom or working professional. It seems impossible sometimes  to get to the gym when you’ve got a job, a family, or if you’re a brand new mom. And that is where I come in! I know that adding exercise into your life is difficult sometimes. I can imagine with busy families it feels like there is no time for YOU. But all you need is about 10 minutes. 10 minutes is enough time to get in some bodyweight exercise and healthy living … Read more…

A Perfect Pairing: Goats’ Milk Soap and Crocheted Wash Cloths

lomah acres soap

I have been working on little gift sets as thank you presents for our amazing midwifes. I decided to give them each a Starbucks’ giftcard (When your profession means a lot of all-nighters, coffee is your friend!), a bar of Lomah Acres‘ nourishing goat’s milk soap, and a crocheted wash cloth. I hope this will be the perfect pairing for a thank-you present. I have made plenty of crocheted dish cloths over the past several years. They work great and make wonderful wedding presents paired with other items. Since I was giving goat milk soap, I really wanted to crochet wash … Read more…

10 Tips for Grocery Shopping on a Budget, Eating Healthy, and Meal Planning

Do the rising costs of groceries have you nervous about how you can afford to feed your family fresh, healthy food? Does making your grocery budget each month for a growing family become a task you dread? I know we have unfolded our grocery envelope half way through the month and realized we only had $25 left to last us two weeks! Stretching our grocery budget used to be a consistent concern for us. So how did we manage to wrangle in our grocery budget and make it work for us? Let me tell you! What we finally realized we needed to do was … Read more…

Final Nursery Reveal and a Super Simple Crocheted Gift for That Little Girl in Your Life!

nursery revelation

We debated how much to decorate our nursery. We are renters, so we didn’t want to paint and do a complete overhaul. Also, Rebekah will probably spend the first couple months in a bassinet in our bedroom. As I started to work on the nursery, I debated over some cute themes like “baby animals” and “Noah’s Ark.” I kept a few of those elements, but in the end, I decided to go a more “simple elegance” route. What helped me decide was the fact that I loved the curtains we already had in there (I’ve had them since college). They are a … Read more…

Fresh-Squeezed Orange Juice and an Orange Julius Recipe

A warm spring day in Phoenix is pure bliss for harvesting and juicing oranges. Orange trees are beautiful: the contrast of the vivid orange against the dark green leaves are one of my favorite things about spring here. That and the roses! My cousin and friend Doris invited Mitch and I over to juice some oranges from her tree. We readily accepted, not just for the prospect of sweet orange juice, but because Doris is one of our favorite people. She is always so warm and welcoming, plus multitalented, insightful, and artistic. We wish we would have had more time to … Read more…

Get Your DIY Projects On: Flash Sale for The Ultimate DIY Bundle

* * * This post includes affiliate links. It is important to us that we only share products with you that we love and use in our home. Thank you for supporting our expanding Engaged Home!*** If you’ve been following my posts lately, you know that with our baby girl due any time now. Plus, several of my friends are having babies! Their sweet pictures are flooding Facebook and making me even more anxious to meet our Rebekah. With baby on the brain, I have been trying my hand at more DIY projects than usual. Sometimes I find inspiration from Pinterest, … Read more…

DIY Nursery on a Budget

I am hoping to do a “grand reveal” next week of our DIY nursery. (Keep in mind we are keeping it simple, our nursery won’t end up in any magazines!) However, I did finish several projects, which makes me feel accomplished. 🙂 1. The bow organizer I made a few weeks ago has a few more bows on it curtesy of youtube and Pinterest ideas and a bunch of cute ribbon sent from my mother-in-law and salvaged off shower presents.  2. Rebekah will have an assortment of cute bootie options!  3. Here is the finished DIY Shower Card Art.  4. … Read more…

Let the Nesting Chaos Commence!

Baby Cardigan

My poor crochet projects and reading pile have taken a back seat to my nesting this week. I’ve barely added a couple rows to this baby cardigan! When we hit 36/37 weeks and realized our daughter really could come any time, we started getting serious about some house projects. However, I hope she waits another week at least because we are right in the thick of the chaos! From this angle the nursery looks pretty bad! I still need to make a changing table cover and obviously put away/hang up some decor. This angle’s not as bad, though still lacking … Read more…

A Deal Too Good to Pass Up, Nursery Decor Projects, and Learning to Knit

Last Saturday our knitting and crocheting group consisted of all knitters. I didn’t mind. It meant I was able to relearn some of the basics of knitting: casting on, the knit stitch, even purling. In case you remember, I had started to learn several months ago. But I failed to continue practicing and forgot everything I’d learned. This week, I am determined to carve out some time to watch youtube videos on learning to knit to keep the basics fresh in my mind. If you have any knitting tips, or video suggestions, please leave them in the comments below! One … Read more…

3 Simple Valentine Activities

In case you haven’t realized it already, I am a fan of simple. I am not inherently crafty. My ability to cut in a straight line is questionable at best. But I do enjoy taking on a fun DIY task. I love that they often save money, not to mention the feeling of accomplishment you have afterwards! I also am pushing myself to gather more fun and creative crafts for kids. This past weekend I found myself in need of simple Valentine activities for young kids. Here are three simple Valentine activities that would work great with kids ages 4-9: … Read more…

Last Day to Buy Your DIY Bundle!

Yesterday, I mentioned on Facebook how much I was enjoying my purchase of the Ultimate DIY Bundle. I have barely scratched the surface of what it has to offer. But since I am in nesting mode with a baby on the way, I am loving all the inspiration! What exactly am I loving so far? 1. All the thrifty DIY craft and home decor ideas. If you didn’t know, “thrifty” is my middle name! If a project requires a lot of money or supplies, I won’t do it. Simple and affordable are two qualities that I look for in DIY projects. … Read more…

A DIY ultimate bundle of eBooks, eCourses, and freebies for $35? Yes, please!

When I saw this deal online, I knew I had to share it with you! It is too good of a deal not to share . . . it would be just plain selfish on my part! This bundle offers 76 eBooks and eCourses from some leading DIY bloggers, plus bonus offers! Do you love trying new things? Acquiring new skills? Refining existing interests? I know I do! While The Engaged Home is not a DIY blog, it is a topic that I cover from time to time because it is a personal interest of mine. My right brain (the … Read more…

Embracing Creativity and a Deal Too Good to Pass Up!

When was the last time you decided to do something creative, just for you? Just to express yourself? Crocheting, baking, sewing, writing, and crafting–all of it can nurture your imagination and soul in healthy ways! The past several months all my creativity has been channeled into making gifts or writing for you. Don’t get me wrong–I get incredible joy out of making presents and writing for this blog! {I wouldn’t do it if I didn’t.} However, it is on my heart this year to get back to enjoying pockets of time set aside simply to express myself. Little known fact: … Read more…

Yarn Along: Crocheted Adjustable Diaper Cover and Matching Frog Hat

I love it when new crochet patterns are easy to follow, mostly because if they are too difficult I get annoyed or frustrated. However, I am looking forward to making more of these easy crocheted adjustable diaper covers before Rebekah is born. I may even spring for some expensive wool and go high quality on a few . . . If you are looking to make some cute baby hats or diaper covers, this is a great book of patterns. It has several cute ideas, and the patterns are easy to follow! ***This post includes affiliate links. There is no additional … Read more…

5 Organizing Tips for the New Year

I am avoiding what seems to be a highly debated topic this year: whether or not to make a New Year’s resolution. I do not feel particularly passionate about either side of the argument. However, I do believe in making intentional choices to be healthier and happier. For me that means daily fighting against the urge to eat junk food constantly by replacing it with fresh fruits and vegetables, going for daily walks, affirming my husband, allowing myself the luxury of a nap, praying more consistently, and staying plugged into God’s word. These are ongoing goals that I strive for every day … Read more…

10 Hand-Crafted Gifts That I Love

Hand-crafted gifts are a beautiful part of Christmas for me. Whether I am making or receiving a hand-crafted gift, I know there is special thought put into it, from the color chosen, to the time they took to make it. I am always trying to expand my abilities, so my gifts are not too predictable. I want to crochet and knit socks. I just started attempting and it has been slow going . . . but it my goal to be flawless at it by next Christmas. This list contains 10 of my favorite tried-and-true hand-crafted gifts that either I have … Read more…

Last-Minute Thanksgiving Recipes

Hopefully, most of you have your Thanksgiving menu set and all your groceries bought! But if you are not quite there, or you were asked to bring a dessert or side and are still looking for ideas, check out some of my favorite, last-minute Thanksgiving recipes! The first recipe I am going to share is an original: Mini Apple Crumb Pies. I created it when I had ton of sweet and tart apples from my grandma’s tree and a leftover crust in the fridge. My mom came up with this idea of keeping flour for rolling out doughs in a … Read more…

Yarn Along: Crocheted Infinity Scarf Pattern

I am almost finished with my crocheted infinity scarf pattern. This pattern from Fiber Flux is easy to follow and is turning out exactly how I hoped it would! I also finished a very pink cowl and discovered that I had some gloves to match it perfectly that my mom bought for $1! Now, it is a great set–plus, there is enough yarn leftover on the skein that I can make a matching headband. As far as reading goes, I need to find some personal free time to dive into a good book . . . But, Mitch and I … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesday: Multicolored, One-hour Cowl

No, you caught me. It is not cool enough for a jacket. 🙁 That was staged because it was so cute with the cowl. It’s probably 85 degrees out currently . . . still. But by the end of the week we should be in the 70s! Woo-hoo! I wish I would have written down what brand of yarn this was because I loved how soft and workable it was! Once again I followed an easy, one-hour cowl pattern. I really need to start branching out from cowls . . . but almost everyone is getting one for Christmas! I keep … Read more…

Killer Homemade Tomato Sauce and Soup

Hello everyone, today The Engaged Home is being hijacked by the husband of the home to share with you a great recipe that I’ve been using for about a year now. Do you love tomato sauce but worry about the sugar, salt, or preservative content in the jared or canned tomato products at your local grocer? Ever wanted to know exactly what goes into your food? Ever wanted to eat the best tomato sauce EVER? Well, you’re in luck, because I’m going to share with you a homemade tomato sauce that will completely ruin other recipes for you. It is … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesday: Crocheted Headband, Cowl, and My First Knitting Adventure!

My tactic for Christmas is to make “one-skein gifts”. It makes the creation process faster and cheaper. Every week I take a 40% or 50% off coupon to Micheals and buy a nice skein of yarn for $2.50-$3.00, instead of the usual $5.00-$6.00. Cowls are a great “one-skein gift.” Plus, there is often enough yarn left over to make a matching crocheted headband or hat! This yarn was a bit chunky for a crocheted headband, but I like it anyways! I think it would look even spiffier with a lighter, solid-colored yarn. I modified the pattern because I was a little … Read more…

Easy One-skein, Two-hour Cowl and a Family Vacation to Boot!

Yes, I am still on my easy cowl kick . . . I decided I would make one for all the females on my husband’s side of the family. I am stealing this idea from my Aunt Sheila who made all of us cowls last Christmas on my mom’s side. This pattern is wonderfully simple! Plus, unlike my last cowl, which was simple and chunky, (see below) this blue one has a more decorative stitch to it. One of my favorite things about the blue cowl was that it only takes a couple hours to make, and it takes less than one skein … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesday: Blue-hued Cowl

You may notice a theme developing with my crochet projects: Easy. Even though I want to advance to more difficult projects, (including learning to knit), but we have traveling and are now hosting family in town. Two of my favorite things! But they do not leave much room for complicated projects. Also, we are still trying to organize a “how to crochet and knit” group at church. Thus, I am trying to find an arsenal of simple crochet projects to teach. So, I am sticking with a cowl, though a different pattern than the last one (I still need a … Read more…

The Joy of Finishing a {Simple} Baby Blanket

I love the feeling of finishing a crochet or sewing project. Sometimes, I allow myself to do a few easy projects, just because I can finish them faster, which gives me momentum and motivation. I just finished a two-sided baby blanket. I sewed it together, blanket-stitched around it, then added a crocheted border. If you look closely, you can see my mistakes in sewing it together; however, I am quite content with how it turned out! After going around the blanket with a single crochet, adding two in one spot every four stitches on the corners (to help it lay … Read more…

Our Version of a Margarita Pizza

Since we got married, Mitch and I have loved making pizza together. Pizza, and cookies, we also love to create new types of cookies together. We have tried out different crust recipes, but we usually come back to my bread maker recipe. In attempts to be healthier, I have found a couple whole wheat pizza crusts I really enjoy, unfortunately Mitch is not such a big fan of them! Over the weekend, we bought some fresh basil at a farmer’s market and decided we needed to make tomato basil pizza. We kept it simple. We pressed out our dough, put … Read more…

Receiving Blanket with a Crocheted Blue Trim

After finishing the cowl, I did not dive right into a new project. Mostly because everything I wanted to start required buying supplies, and it was the end of our September budget. (In other words, no money to buy crafting supplies.) As a result, I went back to my tote of leftover yarn and once-started projects. I realized I had two cute receiving blankets that I could sew together and then crochet on a border. I picked blue for the border, even though it will be for a girl, because it actually matches both sides, and partly because it is … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesday: Cowl and “I am the Messenger” by Markus Zusak

  As I talked about last week, I have been working on easy Christmas presents. I recently finished this chunky cowl, or infinity scarf. When I hear “cowl” I think of Batman. It was SO easy and fun to make! I could not refind my pattern, sorry! But I found something similar, that I think I will like even more. I am going to try and make it soon. It is basically the same idea but bigger so that the infinity scarf can be worn more than one way. Check out the pattern for Pavement Infinity Scarf. As always, check out … Read more…

Simple Crochet Projects for Christmas

  I realized the other day that I am hopelessly behind on Christmas gift making. I decided to look for some quick and easy patterns. I have a couple friends who want to learn to crochet and I thought they too may want to make some easy Christmas presents! I remember learning to crochet by doing simple hats, blankets, and scarves. I love “on project” learning where you master a new skill and have a finished product to show for it. I am hoping my friends will feel the same way. The scarf I am working on has many rows and … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesday: Baby Presents and A Northern Light

I have a lot of pregnant friends. So I decided it was time to try my hand at crocheting baby clothes. I also have a lot of leftover baby yarn from past projects that I need to use up. This project is barely started, but I am excited about trying to make baby clothes. It will hopefully turn into an Angel Wings Pinafore. I also recently finished, wrote a blog review, and attended a library book club over A Northern Light. Great teen historical fiction novel. I would highly recommend it. 🙂   This was my crochet project from last week. I … Read more…

Yarn Along Wednesdays

Love to knit or crochet? Need a little extra motivation some days? I know I do! When we lived in York, NE I had friends from college and church that I could get together with to crochet or craft. Whether we talked for hours while we completed our projects or put on a movie, it was a fun and productive time! I have yet to find such a group here, and as a result, my motivation has waned. I love to crochet on my own, but time has been scarce lately. However, these are all just excuses. Recently, I discovered … Read more…

Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar Toner

Facial Toner ¾ cup distilled water ¼ cup raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar with the mother (Braggs is best) 6-12 drops essential oils of your choice Pour all the ingredients into a small glass jar and shake up well. Then, after you wash your face, apply the toner with a cotton ball. It helps to shake the mixture up every time you use it. I store mine in the medicine cabinet because it is dark and dry in there. Each month I make a new batch. This is my newest and favorite use for vinegar. I came across tons of recipes online … Read more…

Cleaning the Coffee Pot with Vinegar

I learned this cleaning trick from both my Aunt Joyce and my mother-in-law Robin. I always rinse my coffee pot thoroughly, but once a month I treat it to a white distilled vinegar bath. I fill up the pot with vinegar, pour it into the coffee maker, and run it through in place of the coffee. The hot vinegar removes stains, residue, and unsavory flavors. After it “brews”, I pour it out and run 3 cycles of water through it. Though I love vinegar, I do not want my coffee to taste like it! ***Sometimes I still have to take … Read more…

Can You Really Use Vinegar as Fabric Softener?

I love soft clothes. Pulling a soft towel or blanket out of the dryer turns the chore into a chance to snuggle up. Unfortunately, fabric softener is expensive and full of strange chemicals. So I have been researching and experimenting with better options. Here is what I have found: Vinegar continues to be amazing. Tons of people online talk about adding ½ cup of distilled white vinegar to their rinse cycle. I tried this with my fabric dispenser balls, which release the vinegar during the rinse cycle for me. The vinegar neutralized odors, reduced static, disinfected, and softened clothes. Pretty … Read more…

Using Vinegar in Your Dishwasher

  Last year I had a problem. Hard water stains. My dishwasher left them on my glasses and silverware. I tried a different detergent, which helped, but I still had the problem. So what is a gal to do? Ask Facebook. My wonderful cousin Briana shared her trick of adding 1/4-1/2 cup distilled white vinegar to the bottom of the dishwasher. Another simple solution brought to me by vinegar. I am no longer embarrassed of my clean dishes. If that isn’t wonderful enough, I recently learned that it keeps the dishwasher cleaner too! I like it when I can kill two chores with … Read more…

Cleaning Up Your Dog’s Messes (Grr) with Vinegar

I dream of getting our carpets cleaned. More accurately ripped out. Carpet does not fare well in Phoenix. The dust finds its way in and wears down the carpet. Vacuuming only seems to scratch the surface of the problem. This is why tile is very popular here. Recently I thought I had found an incredible deal for getting our carpets cleaned. I called and they confirmed. I had almost $150 of birthday money, and by golly, I wanted clean carpets. Well, the carpet guys came and after assessing everything it turned out that instead of being able to get our … Read more…

Washing Windows with Vinegar

I hate cleaning windows. There, I said it! It is sweaty work. Plus, it requires me to climb behind bushes. This is only an issue because I am afraid of scorpions and snakes taking me by surprise. However, it needs done if I want to see out my windows . . . My prediction is that in 2020 they will invent self-cleaning windows. Sadly, I probably won’t be able to afford them, so I might as well get used to washing windows. There are different ways to clean windows depending on the size of your window. For small windows, combine … Read more…

Cleaning Floors with Vinegar

{Ode to Vinegar} I use vinegar to clean my pores, I use vinegar to clean my floors, I’ll use vinegar forever more.  I couldn’t resist. It all rhymed so well! 😉 Cleaning tile and linoleum floors with vinegar was the very first way I ever employed vinegar at home. My grandma Florence cleaned her floors this way. She always kept an immaculate home. When I found out that she mopped this way, I knew it must work well. The vinegar gets up any grim and dirt, disinfects, and leaves the floors shiny. Distilled white vinegar works the best. I try and … Read more…

Cleaning Stovetop Drip Pans

I rarely clean my drip pans. Instead, almost daily, I wipe them down to keep my stovetop clean; however, a couple times a year I take out my drip pans and soak them overnight in distilled white vinegar. The next morning it is easy to scrub off any hardened residue. I love easy when it comes to scrubbing! Plus, the magical vinegar leaves them so shiny! It always deters me from cooking on them for a couple hours so I can just admire their beauty. Sigh. However, sometimes, I need something a little stronger to get them clean. I have … Read more…

A New Haircut for a Busy Weekend

Whew. We had a wonderful, busy, loud, teenage-filled, rambunctious weekend! As a result, I thought I would take a break from the vinegar recipes, until tomorrow at least. 😉 After work on Friday, we headed to the Sold Out Youth Rally at the Surprise Church of Christ. The singing was beautiful, the speaker poignant, the classes strong, and the Illusionist amazing! Though I will be honest, I had low expectations for a “Christian Illusionist”. It sounded a bit hokey to me. But I stand corrected. Harris III not only performed impressive illusions, but he shared a powerful message about the daily deceptions in our … Read more…