Children

Our Homemade Healthy On-The-Go Lunches

posted by Andrea | 01/28/2020 | 12 comments
lunch containers

On days when we’re away from home, running errands, and doing all sorts of fun stuff, I pack healthy on-the-go lunches to save time, money, and calories. We can easily eat these lunches in the car or wherever we are when we’re hungry and want to eat.

These lunches have been a total game-changer for our family now that we are officially out of the napping stage and it’s easier to get out and about during the day.

7 Tips to Stop Germs From Spreading and Shorten The Duration of Coughs and Colds

posted by Andrea | 01/24/2020 | 39 comments
how to shorten a cold

Although we are generally quite healthy around our house, the kids have had enough colds and coughs over the past few years to allow me to develop a little routine of sorts for “what to do when the kids get a cold”.

Today I’m sharing 7 tips to stop germs from spreading and shorten the duration of coughs and colds… they work for us, I hope they work for you too!

How to Clean Battery Corrosion

posted by Andrea | 12/12/2019 | 17 comments
how to clean battery corrosion

Have you ever wondered how to clean battery corrosion (or even if it’s possible to do so)? Yes, it is possible to clean mild to moderate battery corrosion — and as I’ll show you, it’s actually really simple to do! 

If you use batteries, you’ll want to read today’s post!!  

5 Practical Tips to Survive Sleepless Nights With Littles

posted by Andrea | 12/9/2019 | 21 comments
how to survive sleepless nights with littles

The last 8 years of my life have been filled with more sleepless nights than I care to recall! As a coping mechanism for my ultra-structured self, I came up with a short list of survival techniques — all of which I’m sharing in today’s post!

If you struggle with sleepless nights (for whatever reason) today’s post can help!

How to Make 30 Simple Gifts in Under 30 Minutes for Under $30

posted by Andrea | 12/3/2019 | 23 comments
simple holiday gifts

I love giving simple holiday gifts to all the special people in our lives. However, my clutter-free lifestyle means I’m always searching for disposable and consumable gifts. And since I give LOTS of gifts, I need to come up with a way to keep the cost and time-commitment in check.

My gift idea this year is quite possibly my simplest one yet! In fact, I made more than 30 gift bags in under 30 minutes for under $30! Get the details (and free printable gift tags) in today’s post!

5 Tips To Simplify Kids’ Birthday Parties

posted by Andrea | 11/22/2019 | 27 comments
5 tips to simplify birthday parties

Contrary to what we might see on social media these days, I’m a firm believer that it IS possible to celebrate our children on their birthday (and every day) without tons of stress, financial investment, or a huge mess to clean up the next day!

Since it’s Nora’s 8th birthday TODAY, I thought it was the perfect time to share a few of my tips to simplify kids’ birthday parties!

A Little Encouragement for the Parents of Picky Eaters

posted by Andrea | 11/8/2019 | 24 comments

Do you worry that your children are “picky eaters”? Have you been shamed by other parents, relatives, friends, doctors, or “experts” because of what your children don’t eat?

If you’re stressed about picky eaters, you’re in the right place! I hope to offer some simple tips, as well as much-needed encouragement for you and your family!

How To Help Your Children Increase Their Savings

posted by Andrea | 10/22/2019 | 26 comments

Have you ever wondered how to help your children increase their savings or manage their money? Or maybe you’ve waffled back and forth about the concept of an allowance? 

If so, I’m sharing the simple 3-part plan we’re using (with much success) right now!

The 60+ Simple Tasks Our Children Do Every Day

posted by Andrea | 10/14/2019 | 24 comments

I am continually asked what “chores” or responsibilities our kids have, and/or if we recommend any specific simple daily tasks for children at various age levels.

I’ll be honest, even though our family is very routine-oriented and scheduled, we haven’t found a chore chart or reward system that works well for us. Our family seems to function best with a handful of basic expectations that, although unwritten, are known and (usually) remembered by all… I’m sharing 60+ of these unwritten tasks or expectations in today’s post!

Clara is 2!!!

posted by Andrea | 09/25/2019 | 30 comments

A Big Happy Birthday to our Sweet Clara Jo!! 

We didn’t have an official party, but we DID celebrate with our own family over the weekend — a few fun gifts, lots of yummy food, a balloon, and a bunch of wrapping paper and boxes to play in afterward. It’s safe to say she had an extremely fun “birthday party” — and I know she’ll be spoiled with special treats and fun activities again today! 

We’re Finished With Our Back-To-School Shopping!

posted by Andrea | 08/22/2019 | 13 comments

Are you finished with your back-to-school shopping yet? We are, and it feels good to know the kids are ready to go for their first days of school!

If you’re still looking for the perfect back-to-school shoes, check out the pediped website — I’m sure you’ll find something you (and your kids) will love!

Our Boys’ Farmhouse Bedroom Tour

posted by Andrea | 08/21/2019 | 24 comments

I had SO much fun decorating the boys’ bedroom for our most recent “mini makeover”! I tried my best to tailor it to the boys’ personalities, likes, and interests — and I must have done a pretty good job because they were THRILLED when they saw their finished space. 

This room has odd sloped ceilings and some other challenges to work around, but thanks to some creative storage and “out of the box thinking”, I was able to create a fun and functional farmhouse bedroom for our boys!

READER QUESTION: How Do You Handle Extra-Curricular Activities?

posted by Andrea | 08/19/2019 | 39 comments

A few weeks ago, I shared a Reader Question, asking how you handle fundraisers… and today, I’m back with another Reader Question (one I get very regularly) regarding extra-curricular activities! 

Along with so many of my readers, I am very curious to know how different families approach extra-curricular activities!

5 Ways I Simplify School Snacks and Lunches

posted by Andrea | 08/12/2019 | 35 comments

As I’m sure many of you can relate with, packing snacks and lunches was something I hated doing — I even had Dave do it for a while. However, this task has grown on me over the years and I’m now to the point where I actually enjoy it! 

What made the difference for me? A simplified routine, some fantastic lunch boxes, and a few more tips that I’m sharing in today’s post!

READER QUESTION: How Do You Handle Fundraisers?

posted by Andrea | 07/30/2019 | 19 comments

Over the past week, 3 different people have emailed me asking how Dave and I handle fundraisers for our children. 

I know every family and every child is different, so I’d love to know how YOU handle school, church, and/or community fundraisers.

How I Know It’s Time to Give Up Naps

posted by Andrea | 07/25/2019 | 6 comments

Over the past 7+ years, I’ve had 1 horrendous napper, 1 amazing napper, and 2 fairly normal nappers — looking back, I can see that they all “gave up” napping in basically the same way — yes, Clara is mostly done napping 🙁

I suppose it’s a little sad to move past another season of life, but I’m pretty excited about how much freedom I’ll have during the day now that we’re not tied to a specific napping schedule!

James is 4!

posted by Andrea | 07/16/2019 | 21 comments

James celebrated his 4th birthday on Sunday – which means preschool (and all sort of other fun opportunities) for him this coming fall!

Come read more about James, his Monster Truck party, and why we love this little guy so much!!

How We Make More Reading Time (and Enjoy Quieter Meals) With Our Kids

posted by Andrea | 07/15/2019 | 46 comments

Last winter, I started looking for ways to fit more reading time in with the kids — mainly because we were getting SO many books from the library each week that it was sometimes tricky to find time to read them all, especially since the older kids often like longer chapter books. 

Thanks to a suggestion from Nora, we have now made time for more reading every day AND we’re enjoying quieter meal times! Win-Win!