Friday, September 18, 2009

What's the second step to being an efficient wife?

This is the final day of the efficient wife theme on my blog.. I got one encouraging comment from the last post.. so I thought.. OK.. I'll keep it coming. Obviously I am not an expert.. and need a lot of work in this area. But... I thought I would share that I am currently updating my IPhone while writing this blog.. so, multi-tasking = efficient.

Man, I have ADD - That is not the second step.

The second step is getting on a SCHEDULE and STICKING TO IT! Especially when it comes to housework. Meal planning is definitely easier than this, trust me. If you saw my house right now, you would immediately tell me to STOP BLOGGING and CLEAN. Well, I am doing laundry while blogging - so, again I get stars for multi-tasking.

The expert in the area of making and keeping a schedule (specifically housework) is Fly Lady. If you haven't been to her site.. GO, READ, LEARN...DO. She recommends to start with baby steps (which I love). Two things I try to definitely do are... clean the sink / run the dish washer every night and unload it in the morning. Secondly, put one load of laundry in each morning. I think those are two things that can pile up.. and most women HATE doing. I also love how she breaks up the house into sections.. her plan would even work well for women who work, not only SAHMs.

Here are her 11 Commandments.. we all need to go by!
  1. Keep your sink clean and shiny.
  2. Get dressed every morning, even if you don’t feel like it. Don’t forget your lace-up shoes.
  3. Do your morning and before bedtime routine everyday.
  4. Don’t allow yourself to be sidetracked by the computer.
  5. Pick up after yourself. If you get it out, put it away.
  6. Don’t try to do two projects at once. ONE JOB AT A TIME.
  7. Don’t pull out more than you can put back in one hour.
  8. Do something for yourself everyday, maybe every morning and night.
  9. Work as fast as you can to get the job done. This will give you more time to play later.
  10. Smile even when you don’t feel like it. It is contagious. Make your mind up to be happy and you will be.
  11. Don’t forget to laugh everyday. Pamper yourself, you deserve it.
I do so much better when I put myself on a schedule and stick to it... so I thought that would help us all. When your home is in order.. life is so much less stressful!

BONUS - FREEBIE FRIDAY - over on our giveaways site, we are giving away a Beaba Babycook - Babyfood Maker. It is valued at $150 - enter at

Have a great weekend!!

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What's the first step to being an efficient wife?

Yes, I love themes.. and due to the recent google search that landed some poor soul to my little blog.. this week's theme is on being an efficient wife. This is the theme for two reasons.. first of all, it gives me something to write about and second of all, I need some efficiency in my life! Especially since I am pregnant with our second child.. YES!! YEAH!! Can you believe it? We are so excited!! After reading my friend's blog post about all her kids and the craziness --I don't know if I can handle it, but it is too late for that!!

My sister-in-law and niece came to visit this past weekend. We had so much fun with them. My niece and Kate's age difference is the just about the same as Kate and our new little baby (due March 28th). Justin and I were talking about it... and man are we going to have our hands full!! (BTW.. no, I didn't take any pictures of when they were here.. yes, I am mad at myself).
Anyway.. back to my efficient wife theme / step one - MEAL PLANNING. I was thinking about this and something I wanted to get back to was meal planning. One of my best friends growing up (and to this day) had/has the most efficient mom I have ever met or known. Her family was like a second family to me, so I did get to learn a little from her and her mom. Oh, and yes I still call her and ask her for advice.

This mom was very much into meal planning. In fact, she would plan meals for the month. As a bonus, she only went grocery shopping once a month. Did you hear that? ONCE A MONTH. I did this when Justin and I were first married, but I got out of the habit. I am determined to get back into it. I have decided to try to meal plan for two weeks, instead of the whole month and go shopping twice a month. I'll let you know how it goes.

To help you out, I thought I would post the meals I have planned for the next two weeks along with links to the recipes (if they have a recipe). Also, as a tip.. always get your family involved in this and ask them what they would like to have on their menu. Justin always tells me some meals I forget about. I would also suggest compiling a list of your family's favorite recipes so you have something to choose from each week. Try one new recipe each week. We can get so boring and repetitious in what we make.

This week I was reading another blog who made The Pioneer Woman's Marlboro Man's Favorite Sandwich and I decided to make it.. let me tell you.. it was AMAZING!! I am definitely adding this one to our list of favorites!!

Here are the meals I have planned for the next two weeks. I write them on our family calendar, so everyone can see it. It helps tremendously with grocery shopping!! I hope this helps you!

9/17 - Meatloaf with mashed potatoes
9/18 - Leftovers
9/19 - B-Day Party
9/20 - Enchiladas with rice and corn (use recipe on store bought enchilada sauce can)
9/21 - Salmon with broccoli
9/22 - Grilled Chicken and sauteed veggies
9/24 - Tacos with rice and corn
9/26 - Steak with Gorgonzola & baked potatoes
9/27 - Eat Out
9/28 - Smithfield's Pre-Seasoned Pork Tenderloin (grilled)
9/29 - Spaghetti (Justin makes this - I'll have to get his recipe to post)
9/30 - Leftovers
10/1 - Grilled Lemon Pepper Chicken with corn

Monday, September 14, 2009

Need an introduction for an efficient wife?

I was just checking my google analytics and found that someone searched for an "introduction to an efficient wife" and reached my blog from that search. Although I long to be an efficient wife and I wish had a great story for your introduction to an efficient wife.. sorry mister.. you won't find that here.

What you will find... pathetic titles posed as questions... lots of stories and pictures about my little girl, Kate (sorry, I can't help it) recipes and other random things like this post.

Maybe that does make me an efficient wife... I can cram all that stuff into this little blog. My new goal along with being an excellent wife (Prov. 31), I am adding an efficient wife. Now that I think about it.. the Proverbs 31 wife was efficient... I have a lot to work on!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

How did Kate do at her first day of preschool (MMO)?

I was so nervous today, I woke up at about 5:30am (which would normally be unheard of from me). I am seriously not a morning person, but I wish I was. I could stay up all night, but no matter what time I go to bed, I do not like getting up in the morning. Today was Kate's first day at preschool. Well, they call it preschool, but I am only sending her one day a week for three hours (three days seemed a little to much for a 16 month old) so it is really more like a mother's morning out for me.

Anyway, I wanted to make sure I had all the paperwork, her little backpack, snacks and supplies ready to go. She is there now, and I am still anxious. This was her before she left this morning...

Ok mom and dad.. I'm ready to go...

Justin dropped her off. The preschool is at a church about 2 minutes from where he works. I also didn't trust myself. I didn't want to be that babbling idiot crying when I dropped her off. I did cry when he pulled out of the driveway with her. At least I was able to experience that by myself.

So the big question... how did she do? I was nervous because she cries almost everytime I take her to the nursery at our church on Sunday mornings. Justin assured me that she had no problem today. She walked right into that class and starting playing with toys. When her daddy proceeded to tell her "bye, bye", he was expecting some crying... running to him... clinging on him, etc. I think he was a little disappointed when she responded with a look up at him, a wave and a nonchalant "bye, bye" out of her mouth.

She is seriously growing up.. and is going to be just fine at her MMO. I just hope she isn't disappointed tomorrow, when she is stuck with me all day again. I am heading to pick her up now and I am hoping she is excited to see me!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Kate is 16 months already? Recipe & Freebie Friday

I have been completely neglecting my blog lately, which probably disappoints me more than you. I have a terrible memory, so I am hoping this is a way to somewhat help me remember what went on in my early days of motherhood. It has only been 16 months since Kate came into our lives and it seriously seems like a blur. Can you believe it? She turned 16 months yesterday. I will have to say, this is a fun stage! She is so interactive, intuitive and eager to learn. Oh, yes, she is also eager to show her strong will and trys to stand up to her mommy.. which I have already started to work on breaking. (ok, that part is not so fun.) The rest is though. She is learning new words all the time and it amazes me what she can understand. She will actually take our trash to the trash can and throw it away. Justin and I both think that is awesome! (it doesn't take much for us)

Her biggest obsession is shoes. It is really funny/weird. She wakes up pointing to her shoes and saying, "shoes". She is constantly bringing us our shoes and wanting us to put them on. She even had a melt down the other day when I didn't put the shoes she wanted on her feet. (btw.. the shoes I picked out won).

She also loves to dance, play with her doll house and swing on her swing set.

A lady gave her a "dum dum" lolly pop the other day and she loved it. She smiled and giggled the whole time she ate it. I have never seen anything bring her such joy.

To make things even better.. she is just about the cutest thing ever! I don't think I have put these on my blog before, so here are some of my favorite pictures we had taken for her 1 year pics.
She loves to blow kisses.
Kate with her cousins Sara Beth and Luke.

Aren't those pictures amazing? My sister-in-law set up a photo shoot with her photographer and he is amazing!

I know that Labor Day is coming up and if are like me you will be attending one or two parties. We are going to friends of ours for lunch/cookout and that night we are having friends over for the FSU/Miami game. (GO NOLES!!)

I made this a couple weeks ago for some ladies I had over and it was delicious!! I love trifles. They are so easy and pretty. I have made quite a few and this one is by far my favorite. Perfect for entertaining. Here is the recipe. I of course found it on All Recipes, but I didn't have all the ingredients, so I did some substitutes and it was amazing! Here is a link to the original (Strawberry Tiramisu Trifle). Below is the trifle with my changes.

Strawberry Trifle

2 quarts fresh strawberries
1 Jar Marshmallow Cream
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
4 tablespoons strong brewed coffee, room temperature
1 Container Cool Whip, thawed 2 Packages Pepperage Farms Milano Cookies 6 (1 ounce) squares Semi-Sweet chocolate, grated (I chopped up chocolate chips)

Set aside three strawberries for garnish; slice the remaining strawberries. In a bowl, mix Marshmallow Cream and Cream Cheese together until smooth. Fold in whipped topping.
Dip cookies in coffee (if you don't like coffee dip in milk). Line the bottom of a 3-qt. trifle or glass serving bowl with half of the cookies. Top with half of the sliced berries, grated chocolate and cream cheese mixture; repeat layers. Cut reserved berries in half; place on trifle. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.

I know you are going to think this post is never-ending, but I wanted to let you know about our awesome giveaway this week over at our giveaways page. We are giving away an amazing pearl necklace from Nebo Beads a NY based jewelry designer. Check it out and enter at: Chic Giveaways.

Have an awesome weekend!!

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Why does life get so hectic?

For the past few weeks, our life has been crazy. My husband and I have had something going on every night for the past two weeks. Last Monday we took our first trip to the emergency room with Kate. She fell at church and we didn't see her fall. She started throwing up a couple hours later and the doctor was concerned that she hit her head. He wanted us to take her in to get a catscan. We spent four hours in the ER and they didn't want to give her a catscan and sent us home. Thank goodness it just ended up being a stomach virus that was going around. She is fine, but that was only the beginning to our crazy couple of weeks.

Our church hosted a Beth Moore simulcast and I was on the team. We had a "dream team" of women working together. I have never been apart of a group who worked together so well. We did run into a few bumps in the road, but the Lord was so faithful and everything turned out wonderfully! Here is that awesome team of women.

Beth talked from Psalm 37 - "Coming Home to Heart of Your Desires". (I feel a little weird calling her Beth.. I am talking as if I know her personally, which I don't.. but I didn't want to say Beth Moore or Mrs. Moore, so I settled for "Beth".) Anyway, I had heard that passage preached several times, but she did bring a freshness to it for me. For those of you who missed it... the message will be available on her website in the next few weeks at Living Proof.

After a hectic week last week and knowing that life wasn't slowing down with Justin's schedule, I decided to re-focus and read through Romans and read the book, Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist by John Piper. I wanted to share an excerpt that he wrote.. I love how God works. This totally goes along with what Beth was talking about this weekend (the desires of our hearts) He wrote a poem to his wife on their 25th wedding anniversary on what it is to be a Christian Hedonist. The poem is really long, so I won't post it all (click here to read it in its entirety), but I loved this excerpt...

Call this whatever name you may, It is the truth.
Shall God display His great all-satisfying grace Italic
In joyless souls? And shall he trace
The outlines of his majesty
In hearts that neither taste nor see
Enough in him to comprehend
That here their quest is at an end?
No, God has made another way
To put his glory on display.

His goodness shines with brightest rays
When we delight in all his ways.
His glory overflows its rim
When we are satisfied in him.
His radiance will fill the earth
When people revel in his worth.
The beauty of God's holy fire
Burns brightest in the heart's desire.

Don't you just love that? Oh, how I want to "Delight my ways in the Lord".. and "He will give me the desires of my heart." (Psalm 37:4) I have a long way to go.. I want my desires to match up with God's desires.

I have no idea why life gets so hectic at times, but remember to stop and think about your purpose on this earth and why God put you here.. one more time...

His goodness shines with brightest rays
When we delight in all his ways.
His glory overflows its rim
When we are satisfied in him.
His radiance will fill the earth
When people revel in his worth.
The beauty of God's holy fire
Burns brightest in the heart's desire.