5 Ways We Simplify Christmas… with small children

posted by Andrea | 11/14/2018 | 42 comments

I wasn’t planning to do a post about “simplifying Christmas”, just yet (I want to enjoy Thanksgiving first!)

But after receiving an astonishing number of emails, comments, and Facebook messages requesting this type of post, I decided to share 5 things we do (or rather DON’T do) to simplify our holiday season — specifically Christmas.

My Top Tip to Simplify Big Holiday Meals

posted by Andrea | 11/13/2018 | 43 comments

I like to keep ALL holidays as simple as possible, but Thanksgiving is a big one for me — it can be so much work to roast the “perfect turkey” and have all the foods ready at the exact same time (but it doesn’t have to be).

If you’re hosting a big meal this holiday season, let me share one tip that has completely revolutionized the way I prepare big holiday meals, and drastically helped to simplify my most favorite holiday! I’m also linking to TONS of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes!

How I Lost 60 Pounds in 60 Weeks (Post Baby)

posted by Andrea | 11/12/2018 | 53 comments

As someone who is anti “diet” and anti “exercise”, I felt a little overwhelmed as I embarked on my first-ever weight-loss journey after Clara was born (60 weeks ago).

I ended up loosing 60 pounds, which was much more than I anticipated in the beginning — I’m sharing my journey in today’s post!

Meal Planning 101: How I Plan our Side Dishes

posted by Andrea | 11/9/2018 | 22 comments

Over the years, I’ve written countless posts about meal planning. These posts DO mention the various side dishes we eat with our meals, but I’ve never really gone into much detail about how I plan, prep, and prepare our side dishes

I’ve gotten a huge number of questions about side dishes, so I felt it was finally time to devote one full post to the topic… that’s what we’re focusing on today!

5 Tips To Encourage a Clean(er) and (more) Organized Family

posted by Andrea | 11/8/2018 | 29 comments

Over the years, I’ve been asked countless times how to get messy spouses and messy children to ‘clean up their act’. And while I don’t have any quick-fix answers or easy solutions to these questions, I do think that if your children and/or your spouse are willing to try to change their behavior, there is hope!

Today I’m sharing 5 steps to encourage a clean(er) and (more) organized family!

How We Grow Our Children’s Savings Accounts

posted by Andrea | 11/7/2018 | 19 comments

At this point in our lives, Dave and I don’t give any type of allowance to our children. However, we DO have an extremely simple method of growing our children’s savings accounts that requires zero effort on our part.

The whole process is automated through our bank… and it’s amazing how quickly the money adds up!

Sweet and Spicy Snack Mix (for a crowd!)

posted by Andrea | 11/6/2018 | 12 comments

Today’s recipe for Sweet and Spicy Snack Mix is a newer favorite of ours. I got the recipe from a friend this summer — and WOW is it good! 

I’ve made it a few times for food gifts, and I’m sure I’ll make it a few more times for holiday parties. It’s the perfect balance of sweet, salty, spicy, savory, crunchy, chewy, and oh so delicious! 

9 Questions To Help Declutter Your Life

posted by Andrea | 11/5/2018 | 13 comments

While it would be fantastic if I could work individually with each one of you to help you clear the clutter from your home, the lack of hours in a day and my hatred of travel make that idea completely impossible.

One way I can tailor my advice to each one of you, however, is to share open-ended questions YOU can ask YOURSELF when YOU purge YOUR home. By asking yourself these 9 questions (and honestly answering them) you will equip yourself with the ability to purge necessary items from your home and life! 

3 Tips to Arrive On Time (or early) With Young Children

posted by Andrea | 11/2/2018 | 54 comments

As I was talking with friends the other day, something they mentioned sparked an in-depth conversation about the things Dave and I do to help us get out the door and to our destination on time (often early) even with our children in tow.

My 3 tips really aren’t all that revolutionary — however, they are simple tactics we can all implement into our daily lives… and they work! If you struggle to arrive on time, try my tips and see if they help! 

A Few Of My Favorite Things {November 2018}

posted by Andrea | 11/1/2018 | 25 comments

Just 7 “short” years ago, I was anxiously anticipating the arrival of our first baby! Now we are anxiously looking forward to Nora’s 7th birthday (on Thanksgiving day!) We’ll celebrate one of our favorite girls on my most favorite holiday of the year — I can’t wait!

Today I’m sharing a few more of my favorite things! 

Impossibly Simple Slow Cooker Squash

posted by Andrea | 10/31/2018 | 33 comments

If you’ve never tried squash before, NOW IS THE TIME! They are fresh, in-season, and most likely selling at rock-bottom prices at your local grocery store or farmer’s market. 

I hope today’s impossibly simple slow cooker method of cooking squash will give you the motivation you need to serve squash as a side dish for one of your meals this week! It’s SO tasty, super nutritious, and even Clara loves it!

A Simple Way To Think About Saving and Spending

posted by Andrea | 10/30/2018 | 33 comments

If you’re looking for a fairly simple and straightforward way to quickly decide if the cost of something is worth it for you, read this post and follow the 2 steps!

You might think it’s TOO simple… but I promise it works!!

4 Simple Responses for BUSY Adults

posted by Andrea | 10/29/2018 | 3 comments

Last week, I shared my 5 simple responses for BORED children. As a follow-up post, I thought it would be fun to share my 4 simple responses for BUSY adults! 

The next time you feel too BUSY or stretched just a little too thin, try one of these 4 responses to quickly quiet, calm, and de-stress your day.

Fun Conversations Starters (for adults, kids, introverts, and anyone else!)

posted by Andrea | 10/26/2018 | 12 comments

As self-proclaimed introverts, Dave and I are not much for small-talk. We can manage boring small-talk conversations just fine, and I certainly wouldn’t ever consider us to be “socially awkward”.

That said, with the holiday party season just around the corner, I thought it might be fun to come up with a list of Fun Conversation Starters for anyone who would rather not discuss the weather or work with every new person they encounter! I also have a great list of 20 conversation starters for kids!

4 Ideas to Reduce Excess “Wants”

posted by Andrea | 10/25/2018 | 41 comments

There is no “quick fix” for not wanting something cool when you see it, but I do have a few relatively simple tips I use for myself (and for my children) that seem to help reduce some of those excess “wants”.

These ideas are especially relevant now, as we gear up for another holiday season filled with even more stuff… but they work well year round too!

Simple Vegetable Quiche {Gluten Free}

posted by Andrea | 10/24/2018 | 12 comments

Even though no one in our family is gluten-free or low-carb, this veggie quiche fits the bill for both. The veggies serve as somewhat of a crust, and the tomatoes on top add a fantastic pop of color!

If you’re looking for a really yummy way to incorporate lots of veggies into your breakfast, give this Vegetable Quiche a try!

How I Save BIG On Prescriptions and Blood Work

posted by Andrea | 10/23/2018 | 25 comments

Over the course of our married life, Dave and I have been blessed with very good health. We’ve hardly ever been sick, we usually only visit the doctor for routine checkups, and we’ve hardly had to fill any prescriptions or pay for any medically-related expenses.

This past summer, however, we had several medical expenses… and after talking with my doctor, I found a brilliant and extremely simple way to save BIG on both prescriptions and blood work!

5 Simple Responses For Bored Children

posted by Andrea | 10/22/2018 | 11 comments

Due to the many questions I get from readers, I’ve recently been thinking about all the ways we try to combat boredom in our house. I’ve seen some clever acronyms floating around the internet — I’ve changed mine up a bit, but still with a similar vibe.

The next time your child complains of being BORED, try using one of these responses.