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.

August 11, 2017

How to Make Time for Yourself on a Budget

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of PEOPLE®, Real Simple®, and Southern Living®. The opinions and text are all mine.

me time

The calming water dripping in the background as the dishes are washed in the machine. The laundry machine is spinning as it plots its revenge on my socks. The refrigerator is full of actual groceries and gone are the takeaway boxes that had no business leaving the restaurant. The crockpot is cooking dinner which smells like someone knows what they are doing. The children’s rooms have a clear path to their bed and an equally clear path to the closet. The bills are paid some even in advance of their due date.

The littlest child is sitting next to the puppy whose tiny belly is full of pieces of my brand new shoes. The oldest is reading his book that he was supposed to start weeks ago and nervously penning the answers to the teacher driven questions. The middle child is putting on makeup to see how it looks while trying to hide the fact that she is using mine.

I am hiding in my closet. Yes, my closet. It has four walls and a door. It also has two additional doors before you reach it. If they want to find me, they have to travel up the stairs. Then they have to open my bedroom door and my bathroom door.


Why am I hiding in my closet? If you are asking that question, you most likely aren’t a parent. You see quiet in a house of five people and a puppy is as common as finding gold in a lake in Virginia or ice cream in a solid state that was left in a trunk in 100-degree weather. Yes, that happened, a melted mess of strawberry stickiness that was luckily contained in the plastic bag that I normally reuse. The smell was a combination of strawberries and gym socks and required an intervention of a steam machine and a perfumed odor reduction spray.

hy am I hiding in the closet? I have a tip on how you can have me time this summer while staying on a budget.

What am I I doing in my closet? One of my favorite things in the world and no I am not talking about Hide and Go Seek. I know you are thinking trying on shoes. That isn’t it. How about putting on lipstick? That isn’t it either. I am doing the one thing that has driven me to tears, greatness, a sense of accomplishment. It has taken me to far off places, close spaces. I have experienced love, laughter, the study of human nature, the depths of the sea, or soaring in the sky. I have found a new piece of information or clarification on what I know.

I am moving my fingers gingerly through new experiences as my eyes embrace the challenge, context, and the depths of the syllables that formed words. I am becoming, dreaming, making lists to do because I am reading.

I am finding myself under the piles of laundry, dirty dishes, kid questions, husband requests, and job responsibilities. I sound my battle cry as I turn further and further into my Southern Living magazine. I am embracing my dream of a house on the beach and a pie in the oven that tastes like summer and leaves you as breathless as your first kiss. I am having my “me time.” I am away from my favorite people near some of my favorite things only to remind myself that it is me who makes the rest work.

I am undoing the day. I am letting the stress roll off, and the calm of the quiet bring me back to center. I am exploring my likes and finding new things to love.

I am planning my next adventure, a meal to try next week, and I am challenging myself to learn something new. I am using the Southern Living Magazine as my catapult to more and its inspiration as my compass to guide me.

Have a "Me Time" this summer and enjoy reading your favorite magazine. Check out the August issue of Southern Living Magazine and save big by getting Kroger coupon now!

It is easy to get started. I got my Southern Living at my Kroger store. You can also find it at: Bakers, City Market, Dillons, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, Fry’s Food & Drug, Gerbes, Jay C, King Soopers, Owens, Pay Less, QFC, Ralph’s or Smith’s.

Have a "Me Time" this summer and enjoy reading your favorite magazine. Check out the August issue of Southern Living Magazine and save big by getting Kroger coupon now!

I invite you to find your special place and to read and invite you to return to the person you once knew if only for a few minutes dive back into your dreams with magazines: PEOPLE, Real Simple, Southern Living and PEOPLE Princess Diana: Twenty Years Later.

There is a great coupon for $1 off at Kroger so you can save on your next purchase, you can get it here.

August 10, 2017

Easy Way To Support Your Child’s School

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of Costco but all opinions expressed here are mine.

Pay it forward by supporting your school. Join Costco's contest and win 100 box tops for your school.

The alarm goes off. Beep, beep, beep, beep, doesn’t the person near the alarm hear it turn it off? You are downstairs making breakfast. You are also packing lunch at the same time because you decided to take a sneak peek at what they packed and decided it looked more like a snack for a movie than a lunch option. You go to your pantry, and there sits your haul from Costco. Who doesn’t love Costco? You find everything you need there at a price that can’t be beaten. You are also proud of yourself for the value you have gotten from your tightly stretched dollars. You even figured out a way to make those dollars go further.

You are the mastermind of paying it forward on a limited budget.Continue reading

August 3, 2017

How To Get Your Kids To Eat Lunch

I am a Fruit Shoot mom this is a post written by me on their behalf because my children drink them so often I sought employment with the company. I am disclosing my relationship with the brand if you knew me in real life you would know we are in a relationship with them because we are always drinking them.

Do you often wonder what food to pack on your kids lunch boxes just to make sure they will eat them? Read my tips and secret on how to get your kids to eat lunch.

I just found a backpack with a lunch box inside. I couldn’t help but find it. The smell preceded its location. It was a lunch that must be a week old. I am fairly certain I could sell it. Don’t they use mold in medicines these days?

This isn’t the first time I have come to a lunch that wasn’t eaten. In fact, it happens all the time. I am sure you have also encountered the lunch that lives on long after its life expectancy. I know you understand what it feels like to get a whiff of that bag, and then you contemplate if it would be best just to toss it. You decide instead to throw it in the dishwasher. Then you smell it again, and in desperation you let it go to lunch box heaven. I know how to avoid this!

I found the secret to ending lunches that kids do not eat.Continue reading

July 19, 2017

Make Home Happen with SunTrust Mortgage

This post was sponsored, and paid for, by SunTrust Mortgage.  All opinions are my own.

Do you need help buying your first home? Read our tips and learn how to choose the right mortgage

Our three kids have flown the nest and a season of change is upon us.  The four bedroom rental we’ve been in for the last five years is just too large now.  Decisions have to be made.  Are we going to rent a smaller house or take the leap and finally buy a “forever” home?  After much consideration, we’ve decided renting is no longer a good option for us and that buying a smaller house is the right move.  It’s a huge milestone for us!

Where to Start the Home Buying Process

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