Posted on Leave a comment

8 Motivational Quotes For Strong Moms Having A Bad Day

mom quotes header

We all have a rough day every now and then. I find that motivational quotes can help me to cheer up and re-center my day on being my best self in that moment.

A good motivational quote is no replacement for a plan, life goals, and self care routines, but they do help with momentary lapses in motivation. I hope these quotes will help you on your darker, lazier days too.

Continue reading 8 Motivational Quotes For Strong Moms Having A Bad Day
Posted on 1 Comment

Why I’m Switching From Leggings And Going Retro With The House Dress

A vintage housewife and her family blog header

Leggings and yoga pants seem to be the typical fashion around most houses, while the house dress is out of fashion. Homemakers and stay at home moms live in their leggings, both in and outside of the home, and I can understand why. They’re comfortable and allow for a full range of motion, so squatting down to play with your kids isn’t a pain in the rear like it can be when wearing jeans.

Continue reading Why I’m Switching From Leggings And Going Retro With The House Dress
Posted on Leave a comment

Frugal Hygge: How To Hygge Your Home On A Budget

A woman decked out in knitted items and a cup of coffee looking very hygge blog header

Hygge is a Danish word (pronounced like hooga) that roughly translates to ‘cosiness’. It’s so much more than the decor in your home, it’s the mood and atmosphere of your home. It’s how friends and family feel when they are in your home, and the feelings they are left with when they depart.

Continue reading Frugal Hygge: How To Hygge Your Home On A Budget
Posted on Leave a comment

How To Throw A Galaxy Themed Birthday Party For Kids

Galaxy themed birthday parties header

Stars, planets, and swirled paint are everywhere these days. Galaxy eyeshadow, galaxy slime, and galaxy birthday parties are still all the rage, and this trend doesn’t seem to be letting up in 2020.

Kids love to share their passions with their family and friends. If your child is obsessed with space, then throwing a galaxy themed birthday party is the right way to bring STEM learning, your kid’s interests, and having fun together!

Continue reading How To Throw A Galaxy Themed Birthday Party For Kids
Posted on Leave a comment

How To Keep Your Dog Warm Until Spring

A dog standing in the cold snow on a sloped mountain

In Michigan, January is the month when the cold really sets in. Through December is can tend to be pretty mild, but January gets pretty darn frigid.

I have larger dogs that generally do okay in the cold, but as I am trying to be more active with them and walk them more often, I am starting to worry about how I’m going to keep them warm until Spring.

They’re definitely feeling the cold, now, because they really fight going outside in the mornings or at night to do their business.

Continue reading How To Keep Your Dog Warm Until Spring
Posted on Leave a comment

The Lazy Mom’s Guide To Cleaning When You Don’t Want To

Cleaning supplies for the lazy mom's guide to cleaning header

A lot of guides like this start off with making you anxious about guests coming over. They’re aimed at when you need to speed clean to prepare your house for other people. But you know what? Even lazy moms need to clean more often than that.

I am definitely a lazy mom when it comes to cleaning. Unless I’m stressed out and need to burn off energy, cleaning is the last thing I want to do. I’d rather be on the floor making a mess with my son!

Continue reading The Lazy Mom’s Guide To Cleaning When You Don’t Want To
Posted on Leave a comment

Guests are on the way! Quick, what should you clean?

In an ideal world, we would all keep our houses clean 24/7. In an ideal world, we would all have a live-in maid, too. This isn’t an ideal world, folks!

Sometimes, we get a phone call and learn that a friend is 15 minutes away and heading to your house, and let’s be honest: we all panic. The house is a mess! Surely if your friend sees how you really live, they’ll call child protective services and then call the loony bin to come pick you up!

It’s time to prioritize and clean only the things that your guests will notice. Here’s your plan of attack:

The Toilet

Get this one done ASAP! No one wants to see crusty hair behind the toilet seat and smell what your husband left behind when he missed the bowl at 4am.

Put on your gloves, grab some wipes or paper towels, and clean your toilet from cleanest to grossest. The tank gets cleaned first, then the flush handle. Follow up with the toilet seat cover, and then the rest can basically go in any order.

Finish up with some bleach or vinegar in the bowl and a swish with the toilet brush. Ah, that’s better! Take a sigh of relief.

The Kitchen Sink

Get the dishes done! No one wants to wash their hands over the food you ate for breakfast and lunch.

Once the dishes are done, clean out the drain trap and then clean the sink itself. The sink can harbor more bacteria than your toilet, so you need to disinfect this baby. Including the faucet!

The Trash Can

This is the one that gets me every time. I always forget to take out the trash before my guests arrive, and it always seems to be overflowing no matter how much I try to be zero waste!

So take out the trash. It’ll get rid of some of the stink that your nose has gotten used to, and will make a huge difference in how your house looks.

General Smells

Now is the time to remove anything that stinks and maybe light up a candle or start some essential oils on a warmer. Don’t assume that just because you don’t smell anything, no one else does. Nose blindness is a thing, and the smells you live in are invisible to you!

Declutter

Last but not least, use the last few minutes before your guests arrive to declutter what you can. Just hide it for now, you can really clean it up after your guests leave.

I like to have a big wicker basket to hold clutter until I’m ready to put it where it belongs. It’s easier to deal with things in a portable basket than to run back and forth between rooms.

Tips

  • Do you still have a few seconds before your guests arrive? Change your hand towels in the kitchen and bathroom. You don’t want to accidentally get your guests sick by neglecting this!
  • Put away the shoes. At our house, shoes accumulate by the front door no matter what kind of solution I use to hide them, so do a sweep to make sure all shoes are put away and hopefully not stinking up the place as your guests arrive.
  • Prioritize what you clean. What that means will be different for everyone. I would be really embarrassed if my guests saw my kitchen with dishes overflowing and the island covered with random crap, so that’s the first thing I tackle.
  • Close doors to rooms that won’t be used. Your guests don’t need to see your bedroom or office, so shut those doors and worry about cleaning those rooms another day!

We live in a world where we are too busy and too tired to clean the whole house every day. That’s why it’s important to prioritize what you’ll be cleaning and how much it will get cleaned before guests arrive!

What do you clean when guests are on their way?

Posted on Leave a comment

Bedtime Routines Can Save Your Life

Bedtime routines and rituals for better sleep

Why you need a bedtime routine

Life can be so hectic sometimes.

Especially as a stay at home mom, you can essentially feel like you’re always running around.

But if you’re running on empty because you don’t get enough good sleep, it becomes even harder to get it all done.

As a society, sleep is less important to us and regarded as more of a burden than a blissful and necessary part of life. There are a million reasons why this might be the case, but what really matters is that we just aren’t getting enough sleep, and that drive to never rest extends outside of the office and boardroom and into our homes.

Yep, that’s right. Even if you are a stay at home mom who has never worked outside of the home, you probably feel the pressure to always be working on something too.

But how can you make your home a welcoming and peaceful place when you feel chaotic and tired?

That’s why a bedtime routine is important.I know, it can feel infantalizing to put yourself on a schedule. As adults, we like to think we can take care of ourselves instinctively, but if we’re tired more often than not, then that’s clearly not true.

So what is to be done about this? What kind of bedtime schedule can make us better homemakers while also not taking up too much time or energy and stressing us out?

What is a bedtime routine

A bedtime routine is what you do before you hop into bed and fall asleep. You can have a healthy bedtime routine… or an unhealthy one. And if you haven’t taken the time to really examine your routine, chances are you’re doing some unhealthy things that lead to worse sleep.

There are some huge benefits to having a bedtime routine:

  • You get more sleep, and it’s higher quality too!
  • You wake up in a better mood
  • It helps to be more productive throughout the day
  • Your brain will be sharper
  • Creativity is increased with better sleep

Do what works for you

First and foremost, you need to do what works for you. No one else can tell you exactly what bedtime ritual will work for you to get you into bed on time and ready for sleep. All we can do is give suggestions based on science and personal experience.

For instance, I know that the usual advice is to turn off all devices and read a physical book, but that doesn’t work for me. Sure, I turn on a blue light filter on my phone, but I like to unwind with a game on my phone before bed. Sometimes it’s solitaire, sometimes it’s a word search or something else, but often the last thing I see is my phone screen before I sleep.

But if you can’t trust yourself to put the phone down when it’s time to sleep, then you should rely on low tech options like physical books and paper word searches.

Experiment and find out what works for you!

End the day clean

What this means will depend on what you care about, but the basics are to brush your teeth, wash your face, and maybe tidy up the dishes or living room.

Do what you need to do to feel like you’re not leaving yourself and the house a mess. That’s all this step essentially boils down to.

If you know you’re going to be stressed out by the dishes in the sink, well, that stress is going to make sleeping a lot harder. So why let yourself be worked up all night when a few minutes of work will make your sleep that much better?

For me, I can’t sleep until I’ve picked up the living room. My son is a master at destroying the room with toys, and I know if I want to have a chance to vacuum before he destroys it all again, I’ll need to pick it up at night so I can vacuum first thing in the morning.

Make sure the bedroom is pitch black

Okay so this one is something you’ll probably do well before bed time. But if you know you want to sleep after the sun comes up, you need to get that room dark.

I mean REALLY dark.

Like, you think it might still be 3am when you wake up kind of dark.

This is something I learned from my son. Once we got his room pitch black, he started sleeping 15 hours a day… and still does most days, even at a year and a half.

And if you don’t have the money for proper blackout curtains, have no fear! We didn’t either, so we went to the Dollar Tree and bought some of those thick poster boards. We got the black ones and just taped them over the windows. It required some cutting and taping together to get them to the perfect size, but it looks fine from the outside and on the inside it does the job.

Step away from the screens

I know, I know. I said that I use my phone before bed.

But it is true that phones, TVs, and computers disturb our sleep. So as much as you can, you should step away from these devices and focus on other things. Taking up a non-digital hobby is a great idea to keep you busy before bed without relying on that blue light that will keep you up.

Some hobbies you could try include:

  • Knitting
  • Sewing
  • Painting
  • Playing the guitar
  • Wargame model painting
  • Bullet journaling
  • Reading the Bible
  • Reading in general

Reflect on your day

Before bed is a great time to pull out a journal and reflect on what happened. Consider what you’re grateful for, what you wish you could have changed, and what made you happy.

All of these things are an important part of what make up you and your life. Taking the time to really focus and contemplate them helps to put your life into perspective.

You can also use that journal to plan out tomorrow’s schedule! Get a head start on planning. And remember, if you can get it down on paper, your brain doesn’t have to work hard to try and remember it. So if you know you’ll obsess over what needs to get done, this is a must-do step. Write it down so your brain can let it go.

Do some stretching

Yoga or stretching before bed activates the system in your body that triggers relaxation. Stretch your back, arms, shoulders, and especially your glutes before bed!

Here are some other tips to get better sleep:

Stop drinking caffeine as early in the day as possible. Even 6 hours after drinking a coffee, it can reduce your sleep by one hour. If you’re serious about getting some sleep, you need to stop consuming caffeine as early in the day as you can.

Drink as much water as you need. The amount of water you need varies, and is individual to you. You can find some good guidelines to calculate how much you need based on your body weight. The catch, though, is to not drink much before bed so that you’re not up in the night to pee!

Avoid alcohol. Yeah, alcohol can make you drowsy but it won’t get you good sleep. If you do have some alcohol, try to consume it at least 2 hours before bed.

Don’t overeat before bed. It’s a myth that eating before bed will make you fatter than eating at any other time, but eating before bed can disturb your sleep. Eating raises your body temperature, for instance, which will make it harder for you to sleep and will cause you to wake up in a puddle of sweat. It can also cause or worsen indigestion and heartburn.

Prepare for the next day. Get your clothes, makeup, and bathroom ready for what lies ahead. This is especially important for people that lay awake at night making to do lists for the next day!

Take time for yourself. Do some self care, whatever that means for you. Like I said before, I play a game on my phone before I go to sleep. You might watch your favorite TV show, or read a magazine. Do what works for you and helps you to feel relaxed.

Stick to your routine

This is the hardest part, and it’s where I fail every time.

If I let myself slip up even once, I know I’m screwed. And trust me, when I’m dead tired after chasing my toddler around all day, it seems so easy to just say, “I’ll do it tomorrow!”

But if you want to stay on track and really make this routine stick, you have to have discipline.

Have a plan

Decide what your night routine is going to be and write it down. This is a good time to start your bullet journal!

Make your plan as clear and simple as you can. The better you write this down, the better your chance of really following this plan.

Set up reminders

These can be sticky notes on the fridge or alarms on your phone.

Remember what I said about your brain obsessing over things it needs to remember? When you make your brain work to remember your entire bedtime routine, you create a new stress point that will only make falling asleep harder.

Take a few minutes to put up the reminders you need, and your brain will be able to relax‚Ķ and you’ll be able to get some more sleep.

Over time, you won’t need these reminders, but as you start out they are definitely necessary.

Start small

You don’t need to do everything at once. Start with a bed time, and making sure your teeth are brushed and face washed. After a week, you can add the yoga or stretching. A week after that, cut out the screen time before bed.

Each step you take will help, and taking it more slowly will help you to really stick to it. It gives you the time to work out any kinks that might arise from any specific step, instead of a million issues that might pop up if you do everything at once.

Sleep tight!

Posted on Leave a comment

10 Cleaning Hacks In Pictures

Run lemon, lime, or orange peels in the garbage disposal to freshen it up.

Remove build up from hard water on glasses with white vinegar

Unclog your shower head by mixing 1 part water and 1 part vinegar in a sandwich bag. Tie the bag around the shower head so that the holes are immersed in the solution.

Unclog your shower head by mixing 1 part water and 1 part vinegar in a sandwich bag. Tie the bag around the shower head so that the holes are immersed in the solution.

Sanitize your phone, game controllers, and TV remote with an alcohol wipe

Sanitize your phone, game controllers, and TV remote with an alcohol wipe

Clean even the toughest soap scum off your tub with a mix of blue dawn and white vinegar in a spray bottle.

Clean even the toughest soap scum off your tub with a mix of blue dawn and white vinegar in a spray bottle.

Wash shower curtains in the washing machine with bleach or laundry detergent.

Wash shower curtains in the washing machine with bleach or laundry detergent.

Get leftover wax out of a candle holder by rinsing it with steaming hot water, scooping out the wax residue with a paper towel

Get leftover wax out of a candle holder by rinsing it with steaming hot water, scooping out the wax residue with a paper towel

Remove carpet stains with vodka.

Remove carpet stains with vodka.

Get rid of build up that could be making your coffee taste bad by filling the reservoir with 1 part water and 1 part vinegar and letting it brew. Run plain water through after.

Get rid of build up that could be making your coffee taste bad by filling the reservoir with 1 part water and 1 part vinegar and letting it brew. Run plain water through after.

Clean greasy dust in the kitchen by rubbing it off with olive oil. Follow with soap and water to remove excess oil.

Clean greasy dust in the kitchen by rubbing it off with olive oil. Follow with soap and water to remove excess oil.

Run lemon, lime, or orange peels in the garbage disposal to freshen it up.

Run lemon, lime, or orange peels in the garbage disposal to freshen it up.