Thursday, January 5, 2017


Happy New Year! I hope your holidays were filled with happiness. Last year was a good year for me, personally. While I know that many people are filled with concern and worry over the world, and I share those feelings, personally for me the year was lovely. I'm at peace with things I've been struggling with for the past couple years-truly at peace. I'm healthier than ever- I eat well, I exercise regularly, I drink less. I'm just...happy. And positive. And thankful. So very thankful.

I'm ready for this new year and new chapter of my life. Because lots of things are happening! 

Like...a move to a new state. Which in turn means: a new house, new schools for the kids, and finding a new job for me. So there's all that.

(Luckily, I'm a total pro at moving now. This will be our our fifth duty station and our seventh move.)

There are lots of other things too. Smaller things, to work on, to think about, to cook, to read, to try, to write. A new year is always a lovely time for both reflecting on the past and looking toward new goals for the future.

I'm focusing on both Less & More this year:

And maybe a little more writing-here and other places- but a little less sharing. I made my Instagram private and deleted people who aren't on my actual radar. Because...for's not necessary to share with the world right now. So Less people, but More sharing with those that I truly know and care for. That's a less/more that's definitely worth considering. 

Dream big this New Year, guys. Check back and see what we're up too here!

Monday, November 28, 2016


I'm back, ya'll.
It was a long weekend, bless it, and we took it so super easy and it was fantastic.

There was pie baking.

The kids helped me make name cards. It was just the four of us for Thanksgiving, but that's no reason not to have a fancy table.

My Nana's china. It made me miss her.

After our big meal, we went down to the pond where Dylan floated a boat he made.

And my children found a snake skin and picked it up and brought it home because they hope that their mother will die from a heart attack because this nastiness is in her home. (Secretly, I'm glad I have a daughter who is not scared of things like this but STILL.)

There has been A LOT of TV and iPads and video games around here lately and Neal and I threw up our hands and said ENOUGH this weekend. The hubs hauled the kids out into the woods.

There were naps involved too.

And a handwritten letter to Santa.

Also, I still do not understand Snapchat. But this flower crown is pretty.

Monday, October 17, 2016


Monday. You came a little too soon, but let's make the best of it, shall we? And since I've already done yoga, tried meditating for the first time, and am only on my second cup of coffee this morning, I'd say things aren't looking so bad.

The hubs was out at deer camp so the kids and I had a cozy, snuggling, at home weekend and it was great. Let's review:

 I went to a fall dessert swap. So many apples and I tried them all.

I joined a Dave Ramsey + Kon Mari facebook group (it's one of the few reasons I haven't given up facebook) and from a discussion on there, I was inspired to try out Rachel Cruze's clip idea for carrying cash and I liked it a lot. (For those of you that don't know, we've followed Dave Ramsey's advice with our money since Dylan was born. It works for us!)

 I preorded Food Freedom Forever, but my copy got delay. So I cancelled my amazon order and went to Barnes and Noble and physically picked it up instead. (Plus these two. Plus some books for the kids.)  I should have just done that in the first place. I think I need to cut back on online shopping...

When Daddy's away we have sleepovers and watch "It's the Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown" together in the big bed.

FALL, in a photo.

Kon Mari inspired.

We got booed! It's the first time ever that we got booed before we booed someone, and the kids were thrilled.

Let's crush this week, guys!

Friday, October 14, 2016


Guys. I had Monday off and this still felt like a marathon of a week. What is going on? Has time stopped? Am I stuck in a version of Groundhog Day? If so, where is Bill Murray?

Maybe it's all the news that's getting me down. Because things have gotten crazy. Is that it? My brain is full of political noise and the Giants losing?

Let's look at some things that are happier then that shall we?

  • I recently reread The Virgin Suicides and it brought back all kinds of memories from when I first read it. So I fell down the rabbit hole of internet searches about the the story and the movie. I particularity love this Living In article about the design of the movie.

  • I'm reading Spark Joy and I love it. Of course. 

That's all I got this week. I hope your weekend is amazing!

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

NO BEAN CHILI (whole30, paleo, grain free)

Fall is in the air here on the East Coast! And fall means comfort food, like big bowl of chili. When I first started eating Whole 30, I was reluctant to try chili because to me, chili meant beans. But this no bean chili is so good! My family actually loves this chili more than any other one.

I originally posted this recipe on a Whole 30 recap post, but it's so good I wanted to share it again all on it's own. It's the perfect fall dinner and only takes about 30 mintues!

Whole30 No Bean Chili

2 lbs lean ground beef (grass fed if that's your thing) or ground turkey
1 large bell pepper, any color, chopped
1 white onion, chopped
2 cans mild Rotel 
1 6oz can tomato paste
2 cups water
1-2 cups of beef stock (make sure to read your lables) 
1/2 -1 tablespoon chipotle chili powder, depending on your preference
1/2 tablespoon cumin
Salt and pepper, to taste
Avacado, cilantro (if desired)
In a large pot, brown the ground beef. Add the chopped green bell pepper and onion, cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Drain off grease. Add Rotel, tomato paste, water, and spices, stir. Bring to a simmer, and cook about 10 minutes, Add 1 cup of beef stock, stir. Continue cooking for 20-30 minutes, adding more stock to reach your desired consistency. Adjust spices as desired. Serve topped with avocados and cilantro if that's your thing. Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016


I love three day weekends. Even when they're "celebrating" people who did not in fact "discover" America. We ignored that and had a super fall themed weekend.

On Saturday night we went to Byrne Farm Market for their Annual Jack O Lantern display. We went last year and it's so fun. They have hundreds of pumpkins carved and lit up. You can also buy fabulous pumpkins and gourds there. My kiddos love the goose necks. If you're in the area, you should definitely check out Byrne's!

Sunday started off rainy, but cleared up so we went apple picking at another farm, Johnson's Locust Hall. Ava has gone to this farm twice now on school field trips and has been asking us to go as a family for months. It was so worth it! The kids had a great time and we got some delicious, huge apples. I have to admit, I was cracking up a little-I grew up on a small farm and picking fruit was a chore for me growing up and now I was paying money to let my kids do it.

Sunflowers are my favorite.

And with our extra day off? Harry Potter.

Seriously Voldemort, don't even. Professor the Dowager* will destroy you and and all your hooligans.

I've been reading Spark Joy, the second Marie Kondo book and have been going through my clothes and folding them properly again-I have gotten out of the habit. I was pleased to find that there were no clothes that didn't "spark joy" in my closet though! I had the hubs go through his stuff and get rid of his unjoyful clothes as well. I also started using my bullet journal for tracking my KonMari Method cleaning-because I'm that person. I've done the clothes in our house and the papers, but I need to work through my miscellaneous and keepsake stuff still.

I like neutrals.

Finally, last night Dylan had a baseball game. A night game under the lights. Where he pitched. He's been playing first and short for the past two years, and just moved up to pitching, Neal and I had zero chill, guys, Like standing at the fence, clapping, and yelling positive things and closing our eyes tight because we were so nervous for him. And we so didn't need to be nervous, because he CRUSHED IT.

When he struck his first person out, I asked Neal, "So I shouldn't yell really loud 'THAT'S MY BABY!' right?! Because my heart is telling me do it, but my brain is saying that might be embarrassing for him and maybe I should, like, calm down."
He agreed with my brain. IT WAS HARD GUYS.

And THEN. The Giants won their game. It was a good day for baseball.

Hope you had a great weekend!

 *If you don't understand this reference, please go watch Downton Abbey and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hollows and then return.

Friday, October 7, 2016


There's been a lack of posts this week-my laptop has decided to stop recognizing my phone, and since I take 90% of the photos I use here on my phone, it's become an issue. I plan on putting my tech guy (aka my husband) on this problem this weekend.

Until then, let's be thankful that it's FRIDAY and check out some things that I've found:

  •  Love Warrior, Are you a woman? A mother? A wife? A teenager? A father? A husband? A human being? Then you should probably read this book. Book review is coming, but right now I am still so entrenched in how good it was, in all the words Glennon Doyle Melton wrote, that I have to take a moment and collect my thoughts before I can write anything about it other than READ IT.

Have a great weekend everyone!