The Difference Between Purging and Organizing

posted by Andrea | 04/19/2019 | 14 comments

An experience I had in college helped me realize, for the first time, the huge difference between “purging” and “organizing”, and the fact that being organized isn’t necessarily the most important factor in simple living. 

I’m sharing more today… along with a simple “assignment” for you that SHOULD help declutter your home and simplify your life!

My Super Simple, Super Frugal, Quick Fix for Faulty Technology

posted by Andrea | 04/18/2019 | 27 comments

Over the years, I have learned one super simple, super frugal, quick fix for faulty technology that has worked over and over and over again for me…

It might not work for every tech issue you encounter — but considering it’s completely free, super easy to do, and only takes a few seconds, it’s probably worth a shot the next time you experience an issue with your technology!

Whole Grain Banana Bread

posted by Andrea | 04/17/2019 | 19 comments

As I’ve been integrating more whole grains into our daily diet, I’ve started the process of “making over” MANY of my favorite recipes. 

This banana bread recipe was the very first quick bread / muffin recipe I made over — and after pulling several successful loaves of 100% whole grain banana bread from my oven these past few months, I believe I’m FINALLY ready to share my recipe on the blog! 

Why I Don’t Buy Kid’s Clothing in Advance

posted by Andrea | 04/16/2019 | 32 comments

When it comes to kid’s clothing (and adult clothing) I truly do not store much of anything outside the clothing we actually wear right now. I don’t buy ahead, I purge once they outgrow an item, and we don’t rotate clothing based on the season.

I explain more in today’s post!

When, Where, and How I Fit Work Into My Life

posted by Andrea | 04/15/2019 | 23 comments

I haven’t talked much about my work life lately — mainly because I just haven’t been working as much as I used to. I’m far from the budding entrepreneur I once aspired to be… but I still thoroughly enjoy sharing my thoughts in a tiny corner of the internet while enjoying home life with my family. 

Today, I’m sharing a little bit more about when, where, and how I fit working into my daily life!

My Method for Choosing Children’s Library Books

posted by Andrea | 04/12/2019 | 20 comments

Over the past 7 years of regularly visiting our local library, our family hasn’t even come close to reading every single book in the children’s section. 

However, in my opinion, we HAVE done a really great job of reading through a huge variety of books each week — thanks to a super simple method I implemented a few years ago!  

My Mother’s Ring (and a Jewelry Discount!)

posted by Andrea | 04/11/2019 | 12 comments

As some of you know, I recently designed and ordered a “Mother’s Ring” (a ring with all my children’s birthstones).

I’m so happy with how the ring turned out and I’ve had such great experiences working with Engels Jewelry Company over the last 20 years that I thought it might be fun to offer a discount on all Mother’s Jewelry… just in time for Mother’s Day!

Loaded Kale Salad… One We Actually Want to Eat!

posted by Andrea | 04/10/2019 | 30 comments

For a long time, Dave and I could NOT get excited about eating kale — no matter how I cooked or prepared it. Then about a year ago, I finally figured out a way to eat AND enjoy kale… all thanks to this delicious “Loaded Kale Salad” (as I call it!)

If you want to like kale but haven’t found a favorite recipe, give this delicious salad a try!

How We Paid Off Our Mortgage 24 Years Early

posted by Andrea | 04/9/2019 | 42 comments

Many years ago, I shared how Dave and I agreed (before we were married) to live off 50% of our income… which eventually helped us reach our goal of paying off our mortgage in roughly 6 years!

Today (after many requests) I’m sharing a few things that helped us pay off our mortgage faster… and I have a couple fun money jokes, courtesy of Nora’s joke books!

A Peek Into Our Spring Break Staycation

posted by Andrea | 04/8/2019 | 30 comments

We’re “back to reality” after a fun-filled week off from school for Dave, Nora, and Simon. 

Although we didn’t GO anywhere, I think the kids actually had a great time at home, especially since Dave and I had several fun outings and activities planned every single day. 

How I Store, Organize, and Track our Gift Cards

posted by Andrea | 04/5/2019 | 42 comments

Dave and I always have several gift cards to various places around town… some of which we buy ourselves during the special holiday gift card sales and promotions!

I have a super simple method to keep track of all our cards, which I’m sharing today. It’s a method I’ve been using for about 15 years and I’ve never ONCE lost or misplaced or forgot about a gift card!

Monster Cookies

posted by Andrea | 04/4/2019 | 28 comments

Our family loves almost any type of cookie, but Monster Cookies are our all-time favorites — probably because they combine all our favorite things into one cookie (chocolate chips, M&M’s, peanut butter, and oatmeal!)

This recipe makes 12 dozen LARGE cookies — it’s a biggie, one might even say it’s a “monstrous batch” of cookies! 🙂

6 Reasons We Buy Used

posted by Andrea | 04/3/2019 | 56 comments

It’s no secret that I frequently buy used and secondhand items for me, for Dave, for our kids, and for our house. I’m not ashamed to borrow something from a friend or relative — and you all know how much I love Craigslist!

Today, I’m sharing 6 reasons I almost always buy used…

How to Thoroughly Declutter Your Closet in 5 Simple Steps

posted by Andrea | 04/2/2019 | 19 comments

If you’ve ever wondered “How would Andrea organize my closet?” the simple steps in this post should basically answer that question!

Happy purging!

A Few Of My Favorite Things {April 2019}

posted by Andrea | 04/1/2019 | 22 comments

Our family has enjoyed having everyone home for Spring Break these last few days… I feel like all I’ve been doing is cooking and baking (something I enjoy doing more of when Dave is home to help “hold down the fort”)! 

I’ll share more about all my spring break cooking and baking next week… in the meantime, it just seems fitting that all my favorites for this month are kitchen-related! 

My Year-Round Approach to Home Management

posted by Andrea | 03/29/2019 | 33 comments

Last fall, I shared a my personal plan to purge every single space in my home before the New Year. My little “project” went so well that I decided to continue it year-round!

However, I also added in a few new components which have allowed me to slowly deep-clean, purge, and organize my way through our entire home 3 times every year (with very little extra effort)!!! I can’t wait to share the details with you!

Our Current Weekday Routine (Spring 2019 edition)

posted by Andrea | 03/28/2019 | 10 comments

Every week, I get emails asking me to share more about what our normal daily life looks like. 

I’ve shared these types of posts in the past, but they get outdated so quickly that I decided it was time for an updated look at what a fairly “normal” weekday looks like in the Dekker home!

Hearty Whole Grain Oat Pancakes

posted by Andrea | 03/27/2019 | 19 comments

Pancakes were the very first food I made Dave, the morning after our wedding — they have been a favorite food of ours ever since.

I’ve “healthified” my pancake recipes quite a bit over the last several years; most recently with the addition of freshly ground grains! Today, I’m sharing our family’s top favorite — whole grain oat pancakes (and no, you don’t need to grind your own grain to make them!)