Category Archives for "Living Life"

Living Life is about being a parent, giving tips for home management, finance, humor, love, and everything the day throws your way.

Karla’s Korner: Holiday Traditions….Again

Holiday Traditions

Holiday Traditions

With Christmas just a few days away I decided to re-share my thoughts on holiday traditions. As you prepare for your Christmas celebration I encourage you take time to create your own family traditions knowing that there are no right or wrong ways to celebrate. Life is meant to be enjoyed, shared and celebrated with others, so do it. American author Oren Arnold wrote: Christmas gift suggestions: To your enemy, forgiveness. To an opponent, tolerance. To a friend, your heart. To a customer, service. To all, charity. To every child, a good example. To yourself, respect. Whatever your Christmas traditions are I wish you all the best. Merry Christmas!

Read my thoughts on Holiday Traditions




I think we all need a touch point a place we can go to be inspired. Karla is my children’s teacher, a good friend, and a person with a heart of gold. I hope that her words will inspire you to do more. We are only as good as the people we surround ourselves with. It is important to listen with your heart and proceed with your eyes open. Enjoy!

Read more Karla’s Korner, also please visit Karla’s Lifetime Moms page and read her articles.

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Find out how Karla transformed her life and lost over 80 lbs.. it all started with Advocare!

December 18, 2014

Tips To Make Holiday Family Traditions More Special

Family traditions matter because it is how we build a strong bond with our family. It brings people together and is a great way to bridge the gap between generations and make its bond stronger. My childhood memories are filled with fond memories of helping my parents decorate the house for Christmas. We bought Christmas tree together and had lots of fun decorating it, then we will end the day with a warm cup of hot chocolate and cookies. Celebrating holidays isn’t also complete without going to my grandparents house for Christmas eve where we celebrate it with our other relatives. It’s a time to reconnect with them and get in touch with what’s happening to everyone. Family traditions remind me of home and love. As I reminisce I can still clearly remember the scent of Christmas, the taste of the holiday recipes and the joy of being with people we love. Now that I have a family of my own, I appreciate family traditions more and I want my kids to grow up with wonderful memories of it as well that will last a lifetime.

Check out our tips for how to make holiday family traditions more special!

Tips To Make Holiday Family Traditions More Special

Choose special foods that are made or purchased every year:  Families always enjoy a special tradition of a food that is always there during the holidays.  Whether it is grandma’s cookies, a classic roast lamb or one of the great gift baskets from Hickory Farms, family traditions often include food that everyone loves.

Hickory Farms make family traditions more special by giving us great tasting products that complete our holiday gatherings. For more than 60 years Hickory Farms has been providing holiday shoppers with a wide variety of products that not only present beautifully but also taste delicious. The Hickory Farms Signature Chocolate Collection is available in select stores, from the catalogue and online at
Give to others as a family during the holidays:  There is nothing better you can do as a parent than to begin family traditions that revolve around doing good for others.  We love teaching our children to give back to our community, and what better way to do that than to volunteer or give food to those in need?  You can even use our tips for how to save money on the holidays to create more funds to help those in your community.

Did you know that buying from Hickory Farms can help a good cause? Hickory Farms is proud to support Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign. It is the leading non-profit organization working to end childhood hunger in America by 2015. To date, the combined support of Hickory Farms and their customers has raised more than $3.3 million. These contributions help provide funding for summer meal programs, emergency food assistance, nutrition education, holiday charitable giving and long-term solutions for families in need.

It’s also great to know that Hickory Farms supports military overseas. Hickory Farms has 5 products that they offer free shipping to military APO and FPO addresses, including the “Festive Cheese Sampler” gift basket and “Beef Hearty Hickory” basket. This is a perfect surprise to give to military families abroad because Hickory Farms is a great way to give them something that reminds them of home.

Stop for time to count your blessings.  No matter what your family traditions may be, never forget to stop for a moment to be thankful for the blessings you have.  Look around at your family, your home, the food on your table and remember to create a tradition of being thankful not just during the holidays, but every day.

You can start your own Hickory Farm family traditions by picking up one or more of their amazing items at: and in nearly 600 Holiday Market stores and kiosks across North America, as well as in select retailers.

Disclaimer: Compensation and products for review were provided by Hickory Farms via MomTrends. I received a free sample of the product for the purpose of this review and to facilitate a giveaway. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions of Hickory Farms.

December 17, 2014

Holiday Shopping on a Budget

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Chase Ultimate Rewards for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

   I will tell you a big huge secret every year my husband doesn’t buy me any presents. I mean none. Yet, I get amazing gifts. I bet you are thinking why are they still married? Is he a thief? Does he re-gift? How does she get awesome presents from her favorite stores? Does he have a job she doesn’t know about? How does he take the money he has and make it work for him? How does he get her trips and the finer things in life without spending a dollar?


   I have led you on long enough and I want you to know how brilliant my husband is since his brilliant idea is not only available to you but it can be copied by you. The secret is he has a Chase credit card with Ultimate Rewards. He puts everything on the card. He pays off the card. He only spends what he has. Then guess what he gets points towards everything I want. I am a girl that likes trips and presents and I am married to a guy that doesn’t like to spend money on frivolous things. It is a win for both parties.  

   He used to use cards that gave points towards flights to earn our yearly trip. We were always met with blackout dates and flights that didn’t match our work schedule. It was horrible and we spent more time trying to figure out how to book the trip then on the trip. That is why I like the easy to follow formula that Chase Ultimate Rewards offers. If you earn 2000 points you get $20. That $20 bucks can be used to pay toward your bill or you can use it for stores that you already shop at. They will send you a physical gift card or you can shop online to make your rewards dollar go even further. Then if you use your credit card with Ultimate Rewards to shop online in their portal you can accrue even greater rewards. They over different percentages or money back amounts.

   I like that the portal tells you what you need to do to earn more points. Then they offer suggestions based on your current spending to find you great deals on travel and goods and services. I know right now you are doing a lot of holiday spending. You have to buy everyone a gift. I am telling you now is the perfect time to think about how you can reward yourself for something you already have to do. I mean wouldn’t it be nice to take a vacation? How about getting that gift you want but Santa can’t afford it?

   We write a lot of posts about how to live your dreams on the money you already have. I can tell you that each year I get something that we couldn’t afford if we didn’t use our Chase credit card with Ultimate Rewards. It is our way of saving money for something special by living our life the way we have to “within the budget.“ offers you the ability to track your spending and your rewards. It will allow you to make responsible decisions and you can dream bigger and work toward your reward. It is easy to use and understand. This is a tool to help you do more with less.

   So how can you take advantage of Ultimate Rewards? It’s available to Chase Freedom, Chase Sapphire and Ink from Chase cardholders. When you use any of these cards, you earn points that you can redeem for travel, experiences, merchandise, gift cards and even cash back. Visit to learn more about the program and the card that’s best for you.

I will let you know what big gift Santa Chase brings me this year.

Visit Sponsor's Site

Karla’s Korner: Remembering Our Caterpillar Moments

Remembering Our Caterpillar Moments

Caterpillar Moments

Once in a while a conversation takes place that for no other reason I believe to cause us to stop and think; to ponder or search for an “ahh haa” moment. Such a conversation took place at a Christmas party with friends this week. A friend shared that her young daughter asked her if butterflies remember being a caterpillar. Because butterflies have become an inspiration to me, a symbol of transformation and hope, I couldn’t help but not only participate in the conversation but to carry the thoughts home with me and roll them around my head for a while. Is it possible that the butterfly remembers or does it just go through the transformation because that’s just the way it is? Does the butterfly remember the cold, dark cocoon?Continue reading

Karla’s Korner: The Santa Spirit

Karla’s Korner: The Santa Spirit


The Santa Spirit

He was eight, maybe nine years old when he crawled up next to his momma and said “Momma, I been thinkin”. “What about son?” she asked. “Momma, there really isn’t a Santa Claus is it?” With a tear in her eye and a lump in her throat she decided it was time to tell him the truth. Santa, she said was just a fun idea, a fairytale of sorts and that it was in fact her and his dad who had put all of those presents under the tree for all those years. Just like that everything changed; or so she thought. That little boy is my now 16 year old son and as I think about that day I wonder if my answer was what I really believe; is there really a Santa Claus?Continue reading

Karla’s Korner: Weeds and Wishes

Karla’s Korner: Weeds and Wishes

Weeds and Wishes

Weeds and Wishes….Seeing Beyond the Obvious….

Fall is nearly over, the leaves are gone from the trees and the remaining sprigs of once beautiful flowers have turned brown losing their luster leaving behind memories of summer. Standing in the middle of the yard is a lone dandelion stem. The white fuzzy seeds have been scattered in the wind leaving behind an empty stem battered by the weather of the week. As a small child I remember my grandfather carefully plucking the white fluffy ball from the ground and telling me to “make a wish”. Blowing as hard as I could I wished for silly things like ice cream, bubble gum and grandma’s homemade candy. When I became a momma I shared the same tradition with my children soaking up their little kid giggles like a glass of sweet tea on a hot summer day. Knowing full well that those white fluffy wishing seeds would land somewhere in our yard and sprout another dandelion flower that would turn into another wishing ball. My husband had a different view; it was a weed. Armed with the garden sprayer full of weed killer he would spend his afternoons weeding and manicuring the yard; weeds were not allowed. Once in a while a wishing ball would survive the attack and my children would giggle as they blew the tiny fluffy seeds into the wind. They saw the opportunity to make a wish; their dad saw it as a weed that needed to be plucked from the yard before it had time to multiply.Continue reading