Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Jodi Picoult

Every mom needs to take time for herself. You cannot be 100% for your children and remain positive toward your life. We all love our children, but we cannot lose ourself in raising them. Remember that when they have moves out of the house you will be left to continue with your life and they will not want you involved every day. Give yourself some time to get back to you, enjoy some recoup time, and be refreshed and ready to be there for your family. It doesn't matter when you do it, or what you do. Pick something you love and do it, even if it is only when they are in bed.

I love to curl up in a good book and get lost in a good story. I have many favorite authors, but today I will introduce you to one. Jodi Picoult is an amazing author that most women love. She educates herself on her subjects and writes a story that you will more than likely cry, laugh, hope, and dream along with. A good example is 'My Sister's Keeper' and that book has been made into a movie that was released into theaters in June. I haven't seen the movie yet, but the book was an experience in itself. After reading 'Change of Heart' I was compelled to read every one of her books. If you are not afraid of a book that will bring out a wide variety of emotion I highly suggest Jodi Picoult. Just pick any one of her books and be ready for an amazing story as she shows the woman's outlook on religion, relationships, illnesses, and more.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Child Care

There are so many experts on how to raise your kids, and things change on a regular basis. To be honest I have one set of ideas that I find help make the household a nicer place to be and the kids really respond to. I will not get into too much detail today, but I will give you a basic outline of Love and Logic.

Love and Logic teaches kids through empathy not anger. It also teaches kids with real world consequences while the prices are still small. Give them lots of choices, use empathy instead of anger, and let the consequences teach them. Love and Logic is hard to break down into a quick overview, but do a little research and you will love the rewards. It is amazing how my kids respond when I am empathetic (even when I have to fake it) rather than angry. The Love and Logic Institute can give you the tools to deal with any age, and almost any circumstance. You can visit them at If you do not want to buy the books right away look into your local papers. In my area there are seminars and events taking place almost every week for free or for small fees. Also talk to your schools since most have implemented Love and Logic into their daily discipline.

Now if you will please excuse me I feel an 'energy drain' coming on strong . . .

Monday, August 17, 2009

Finances start with a budget

All finances should start with a budget, so I will tell you the basics of making a realistic budget you can stick to. It takes time, but you will be amazed at how much of your money is being thrown away. The hard part comes first. FOr one full month you need to only buy what you NEED. If it is not necessary to buy for survival, recurring bills, or necessary for a job then you do not get it. Keep track of your money during this month by getting a receipt for every transaction and that means even if it is just a few cents. By the end of the month you have accomplished two important things; 1. You know how much money you need to survive. 2. You know where to budget your money.

After the first month you can sit down and write down a realistic budget. Remember to add in a form of entertainment, but keep it within reason. A few things you should really budget for is savings and college for your children. If all goes well you will have expenses paid, savings set, and have some extra money. If not then check back for my posts on working from home.

The most important part of a budget is following it. Be strong ladies, and make sure your husband sticks to it. Just having a budget on the table will help you control the expenses. Give it a try ladies, and enjoy the reward of spending your money in the places that actually mean something to you.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Cleanin tip - crayon cleanup

“Cleaning and scrubbing can wait till tomorrow
For babies grow up, we've learned to our sorrow
So quiet down, cobwebs
Dust, go to sleep
I'm rocking my baby, and babies don't keep.”

As a mom, one of the hardest things I try to do is balance my priorities. I want a happy family, clean home, and still manage to make money. It has taken me a long time to realize that I can not do it all. I have also found that the key is to do things the best you can in the time that you have. So here it is ladies, the cleaning tip of the week. Something that will help you save time cleaning and give you more time to spend with those who need you the most.

Crayons can be easily cleaned off most surfaces with Scott's Liquid Gold. Yes ladies, I am serious. Stop spending the money on the Magic Erasers! I found out this gem from cleaning the crayon off my son’s dresser. Now it just takes minutes to get that crayon off the wall, baby gate, windows, and whatever furniture caught my little artist’s eye while I got distracted cooking. The only downside of using this method is you may have to wipe it down again with a rag wet with water afterwards since Scott's Liquid Gold is oily, but my walls have never looked cleaner.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Pudding Delight

Every woman should have a recipe that everyone wants. This is a recipe that is great for company, family, or potlucks. It is easy to make, and leaves them wanting more.

1 1/2 cubes butter
1/4 c flour
1 1/2c chopped walnuts
8 oz softened cream cheese
16 oz Cool Whip
1 c powdered sugar
2 boxes Chocolate or lemon instant pudding
3c cold milk

First Layer: mix together butter, flour, and walnuts. Bake at 350 for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Cool completely before adding second layer.

Second Layer: Mix together cream cheese, 8 oz Cool Whip, and powdered sugar. Spread on top of the first layer.

Third Layer: Mix together pudding and milk as directed. Spread on top os the second layer. Let sit for 30 minutes.

Top with the remaining 8 oz Cool Whip. Decorate if desired.