Family

Why I Prepare to Be Productive

posted by Andrea | 02/22/2017 | 6 comments

Over the past 7+ years of blogging, I have shared my fair share of productivity tips, tricks, and tools — but as with almost everything in life, my productivity changes as my season of life changes.

Today, however, I’m sharing the one productivity tip that has worked for me for many, many years — and one I suspect will continue working for years to come!

5 Ways We Simplify Mealtime with Young Children

posted by Andrea | 02/17/2017 | 15 comments

Mealtimes are some of the craziest, busiest, loudest, messiest times for our family — and they happen 3-5 time a day (if you include snacks).

However, there are a few things we do that seem to significantly simplify our crazy mealtimes… I’m sharing 5 of them today!

14 Simple Ways to Show Yourself Some Love

posted by Andrea | 02/14/2017 | 24 comments

Happy Valentines Day!

Instead of sharing cute Valentine’s craft ideas, decorating ideas, gift ideas, recipe ideas, or other ideas that take time, effort, energy, money, and a decent amount of planning ahead, I thought I’d share 14 simple ways we can show OURSELVES a little extra love over the next few weeks, months, and even years!

Two “Secrets” to Being Productive AND Being a Present Parent

posted by Andrea | 02/13/2017 | 25 comments

I’m often asked for any “secrets” I have to being productive while also being a “present parent” who plays with their kids, shows interest in what they want to do, reads books with them, does crafts together, etc.

I realize there are MANY variables that could come into play here, but as I’ve thought about these questions over the past couple of years, 2 simple concepts (a.k.a “secrets”) came to mind…

How I Save Time on One of My Least Favorite Activities

posted by Andrea | 02/8/2017 | 38 comments

After many years of visiting 4-5 grocery stores each week, finding the BEST deals, playing the drugstore game, and sending in multiple rebates every week, I now do 97% of my grocery shopping at ONE store.

I know I’m spending more because of it… but the luxury of more time is a splurge I’ve thoroughly enjoyed for the past few years! I’d love to know how you handle your grocery shopping too!

Why I Don’t Stress about Kids and Chores

posted by Andrea | 02/3/2017 | 48 comments

As my kids get older, I get more and more questions about kids and chores… and while Dave and I definitely do expect our children to help out around the house in age-appropriate ways, we don’t go crazy or get stressed out forcing chore charts on our young children.

Today I’m sharing the reasons why I don’t worry too much about kids’ chores… and I’d love to know how you handle chores in your home!

How I Became More Easy Going By Planning Ahead!

posted by Andrea | 01/31/2017 | 31 comments

This might sound like a crazy oxymoron… but it’s completely true for my life! Without faithfully planning ahead and incorporating structure into my daily routine, I would not be able to enjoy the benefits of a simpler, less stressful, more relaxing, more easy-going way of life.

Can anyone relate?

Creating Routine… When Every Day is Different

posted by Andrea | 01/27/2017 | 21 comments

As a self-employed, work-from-home mom of 3 energetic, non-school-age children, my days can be very VERY unpredictable… and this lack of structure starts to wear on me after a while!

Today I’m sharing a few basic routines I’ve implemented that allow our family to thrive, even when every day is different. I think the concepts could be implemented into many different family situations too.

One Important Life Lesson I’ve Learned

posted by Andrea | 01/13/2017 | 48 comments

Tomorrow my sweet baby James will be 18 months old!!!

Today, I’m sharing one very important lesson I’ve learned after 5+ years of motherhood — one that has completely changed my outlook on these years when so many others share their personal suggestions, opinions, and advice. 🙂

Two More Healthier Habits

posted by Andrea | 01/9/2017 | 69 comments

As you might know already, I’m not a huge health nut. HOWEVER, over the past 5+ years, I’ve made a conscious effort to SLOWLY incorporate several healthier habits into my (and my family’s) daily routine.

Today I’m sharing 2 more super simple healthier habits for 2017!

A New Planner for A New Year!

posted by Andrea | 01/4/2017 | 15 comments

As many of you know, I love my Personal Planner and have ordered that brand for the last several years.

Since my Personal Planner giveaway is always so popular, I’m back with another opportunity for you to win their newest A4 planner – perfect for those of you who want to get a little more organized in the New Year!

A Peek Into Our Christmas Break

posted by Andrea | 01/2/2017 | 23 comments

Happy New Year!

It was so nice to take a week off and enjoy a slower pace over the holidays — but I’m excited to be back! Come take a peek at what we did over our break!

Merry Christmas from the Dekkers

posted by Andrea | 12/23/2016 | 28 comments

As I’ve done for many years now, I’ll be taking the week between Christmas and New Years as a short blogging break. It’s such a nice time to step away from my computer and social media for a few days, and I always come back after the New Year with so many blog post topics and ideas!

Today I’m sharing our 2016 Christmas card, and a little bit about what I hope to do (and not do) over our Christmas break!

Live or Artificial? My Internal Christmas Tree Debate

posted by Andrea | 12/16/2016 | 45 comments

Although I was fairly certain we would get a live tree once we were living out on our own, Dave and I have been using a thrift store artificial Christmas tree for the past 11 Christmases 🙂

Every year I have some sort of internal debate about if we should keep using our artificial tree or go buy a real one…

My Favorite “Me Time” Activities… and One Reason I’m so Productive

posted by Andrea | 12/14/2016 | 44 comments

A couple months ago, I read a book that encouraged me to think about what I do for myself (a.k.a. “me time”). And for the last 2 months, I’ve consciously considered what activities bring me joy, satisfaction, and fulfillment.

What I realized is that despite being home with 3 young children all day, I actually enjoy quite a bit of “me time”. Today, I’m sharing some of my favorite me time activities… and why I’m able to be so productive as a result of these activities.

3 Steps To Organize Digital Photos

posted by Andrea | 12/9/2016 | 38 comments

Since I get SO many questions about how I store and organize my digital photos, and since most people take a bazillion photos over the holiday season, I figured it was time for a blog post dedicated to digital photo organization.

Today, I’m sharing my relatively quick and simple 3-step process to store, organize, and backup all my digital photos.

Our Favorite Mess-Free Soap Pump (plus a giveaway!)

posted by Andrea | 12/7/2016 | 390 comments

Today is Dave’s birthday, and I thought we’d celebrate on the blog by doing a fun giveaway!

I also have a super cute video of Nora and Simon trying out our new simplehuman soap pump 🙂

Are We Giving To Satisfy Ourselves?

posted by Andrea | 12/6/2016 | 38 comments

There are so many times when we (myself included) have our own agendas for giving — we want to give what WE want to give, whether it is useful or needed or appreciated by the recipient.

I hope today’s post reminds all of us to take few minutes to think how our gifts might best be used — not only for family and friends but also donations and other charitable giving!

5 Ways We Simplify Christmas… with small children

posted by Andrea | 12/5/2016 | 41 comments

I wasn’t planning to do a post about “simplifying Christmas”, but after receiving an astonishing number of emails, comments, and Facebook messages requesting this post, I decided to share 5 things we do (or rather DON’T do) to simplify our holiday season.

Free Christmas Cards from Minted

posted by Andrea | 12/2/2016 | 10 comments

Yesterday, I shared a few of my favorite things; and today, I get to GIVE AWAY a bunch of my favorite things… Christmas Cards!!

Minted.com is giving away $300 worth of Christmas cards to my readers… and their cards are AMAZING!