February, 2019

Practical Advice for Expectant Parents (and so many others)

posted by Andrea | 02/28/2019 | 22 comments

No, we’re NOT expecting any more babies!

But if you are, I’ve got a list of practical advice and to-dos you can complete and cross off your list NOW, and then rest a little easier knowing that some of these important tasks are out of the way before baby arrives!

Beef and Barley Stew With a Kick!

posted by Andrea | 02/27/2019 | 7 comments

Beef and Barley is such a classic soup recipe, I’m surprised I haven’t shared it on my blog before.

It’s one of our favorite soups/stews — perfect for cold weather (especially with the extra “heat” from the spices!)

Know What You Don’t Want (A Story of How Our Family Almost Had a TV Show!)

posted by Andrea | 02/26/2019 | 14 comments

A few years ago, I was contacted by a TV network who apparently wanted to feature our family in an upcoming TV show… believe it or not, I told them “no thanks”.

Today I’m sharing why I said “no”… as well as why I feel it’s so important to know what we DON’T want for our lives, our families, our schedules, etc.

How We Make Space For Our Kids’ “Treasures”

posted by Andrea | 02/25/2019 | 19 comments

Even before having children of my own, I was adamant that I could have BOTH a large(ish) family AND a clean home without spending hours every day picking up after people. 

So far, I’ve been able to keep our house neat and organized enough for my standards with minimal effort, while letting my children display, collect, save, cherish, and sometimes “hoard” their most favorite trinkets and treasures!

Encouragement: When Your Goals Seem So Far Away

posted by Andrea | 02/22/2019 | 18 comments

Since I write from the perspective of “this is what works for me…” I usually don’t share anything online until I know it’s successful. I quickly summarize the process, neatly outline the various steps, show a handful of pictures, answer questions in the comments, and then move on to the next day’s post.

In this process, one thing that doesn’t always get spotlighted is the fact that most of the projects, ideas, recipes, tips, tools, skills, goals, etc. I write about are YEARS in the making! I’m sharing more on this today…

A Different Perspective on ALL Our Stuff

posted by Andrea | 02/21/2019 | 70 comments

Consider how you might feel with less stuff to store, less stuff to organize, less stuff to clean around, less stuff to buy, and less stuff to think/worry about. Then consider how much of your stuff you truly NEED.

Today I’m sharing a different perspective on all our STUFF… I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Yes, You Can Learn To Be More Productive!

posted by Andrea | 02/20/2019 | 8 comments

For as much of my life as I can remember, I have been highly motivated by productivity — I think I was just born this way! That said, even if you weren’t born with super “productive powers”, I believe you can LEARN to be more productive IF you’re willing to invest a little time and effort. 

If you’re ready to jump-start your productivity, eliminate wasted time, and stop procrastinating, I have the perfect resource for you! 

Sweet Potato Black Bean Tacos

posted by Andrea | 02/19/2019 | 12 comments

Today’s recipe for Sweet Potato Black Bean Tacos is one of those yummy meals that tastes just as good for leftovers as it does fresh-from-the-oven, which is probably why I make it at least once or twice a month!

It is a vegetarian dish — but you could easily add cooked ground beef or cooked shredded chicken if you want some meat. However, with the black beans and mushrooms (and cheese), our family doesn’t even miss the meat.

An “APPLE” a Day Keeps The Clutter Away

posted by Andrea | 02/18/2019 | 11 comments

Over the years, I’ve joked about the fact that the old saying holds true for me, “An Apple A Day Keeps the Doctor Away” as I’m a HUGE apple-lover, and I’ve been blessed with extremely good health for my entire life. 

More recently, however, a reader shared a clever little acronym with me — regarding APPLES and how they help her keep clutter under control!!

Non-Book Library Loans: It’s Amazing Everything Libraries Offer!

posted by Andrea | 02/15/2019 | 43 comments

Our family visits the library at least once a week — often checking out 30-50 books at a time! However, we also use our library card for so many other things besides books — and yes, they are all free!

Today, I’m sharing an incomplete list of NON-BOOK items we can check out from our library at no cost!

Cheesy Sausage and Quinoa Balls

posted by Andrea | 02/14/2019 | 18 comments

In an attempt to use up some leftover cooked quinoa we had in the fridge, I combined ground sausage and the cooked quinoa together… and added a little cheese (because who doesn’t love cheese!) 

The results were FANTASTIC! 

How We Use Vertical Space to Maximize Storage

posted by Andrea | 02/13/2019 | 19 comments

Although purging is the BEST way to make more space… there are plenty of other ways to maximize the space you have.

Using vertical space is one of my favorite “tricks”, and today, I’m sharing how we maximize our space (and in a sense, make more space) by utilizing as much vertical space as we can!

9 Tips for Working Parents to Make the Most of Their Time at Home

posted by Andrea | 02/12/2019 | 42 comments

While I know my own life experience doesn’t qualify me as an “expert” on today’s topic, I have worked with enough busy families and working parents to come up with a fairly long list of tips, ideas, and suggestions. 

If you work outside the home and struggle to find enough hours in your day to keep your home (and life) in order, I hope today’s post will help!

How We Celebrate Valentine’s Day: Frugal, Festive, Family Fun!

posted by Andrea | 02/11/2019 | 8 comments

We love celebrating special days and holidays… but we most definitely do NOT spend crazy amounts of time, energy, or money on decorations, fancy food, or elaborate gifts.

If you share my love of celebrating special days without too much excess hoopla, I think the simple ideas, tips, and recipes in this post will help make your entire week a bit more festive!

5 Practical Reasons To Know and Understand Personality Types

posted by Andrea | 02/8/2019 | 35 comments

I’ve been fascinated by personality types ever since I took my first Myers Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality test in high school. It’s amazing to me how accurately the results of this test explain my personality, my strengths, and my weaknesses.

Today, I’m sharing my own personality type, along with 5 practical reasons to know and understand personality types!

Goals and Dreams: 2 Decades in the Making!

posted by Andrea | 02/7/2019 | 18 comments

Over 2 decades ago (back in middle school) I decided on a few goals and dreams for my “someday adult life”.

Now, 20+ years later, I realized that after years and years of thinking about and working towards those goals and dreams, I’ve actually been able to see them come to fruition in my own life!

5 Habits of Organized People

posted by Andrea | 02/6/2019 | 72 comments

I’m often asked for my “secrets” to enjoying an organized home with little kids home with me all day long. Unfortunately, I don’t have magical powers or a super special secret to share with you… just a few habits I’ve learned over the years that make it possible to keep my home neat and organized every day with minimal effort.

It might not seem like much now, but these simple habits have completely transformed the way I live my life, and how I feel about my space.

How I Store, Prep, and Serve All Our Fresh Produce

posted by Andrea | 02/5/2019 | 56 comments

Yesterday, I shared how I stretch our grocery shopping to every 2-3 weeks — today I’m sharing a how I store, prep, and serve the huge variety of fresh produce I buy every 2-3 weeks so it doesn’t get wasted and so my family can enjoy it at every single meal.

My hope is that this post gives you as much detail as possible regarding our fresh produce consumption… just short of actually inviting you all into my kitchen (wouldn’t that be fun though!)