Wednesday, October 12, 2011

All Good Things...

Dear Friends,

I have been sadly lax at updating my blog as of late.  Honestly, I doubt if anyone is still hanging in there with me, after all this time.

I feel as if I owe you (the short version) of an explanation.

A few months ago we took our kiddos on a week's vacation.  We stayed at a fantastic resort hotel with 2 bedrooms, a kitchen and 2 baths.  It was just under 1200 square feet.  It was fully furnished with dishes, bedding, towels, cookware, etc.  Suddenly it occurred to me that I simply have too much.

We live in a home that is nearly 4,000 square feet.  I had four full sets of dishes and multiple sets of drinking glasses.  In fact, I have so much stuff that I have a 500 square feet storage area, that (most of the time) we can't walk through without causing an avalanche.

Now, a few months ago I wrote a blurb about "why I blog."  I felt so consumed with keeping up with the decorating and rearranging and creating and shopping.  I just felt so.... so..... shallow.  Please don't be offended at that last statement.  Many of you love what you do - and I'm sincerely happy about that.  But it wasn't for me.  I found myself cleaning my house to take photos for my blog...not out of love for my family.  I found myself shopping for superfluous "stuff" - not for the things I truly needed.  I think that's where I started to feel shallow.

So, if you've kept up - thank you, bye the way -- but I haven't updated since July.

Here it is October... and November is right around the corner.  I had high hopes for blogging through Christmas... See, I have collected enough Christmas decor through the last 20 years of marriage that I could decorate the White House...  I put a Christmas tree is every room.  Last year the total was 15 trees, 12 wreaths, 9 Santas and 11 Nativity scenes.  There isn't a single inch of our house I don't decorate.  In fact, I start November 1.  Decor stays up through New Year and it takes me nearly a month to get it all put away. That's three full months of Christmas at our house.

However, all good things must come to an end.  Which is where this blog post leads me.  I will be shutting down my blog.  I will still follow all of you wonderful're such an inspiration.  I just can't keep up with something that makes me so crazy over unimportant things.

I thank each of you for your sweet comments over these past few months.  I may decide later to start a new blog focussing on a different topic.  But for now, I'm looking forward to doing things for my family.... because I love them... not because I have to blog about it.  As for all of you, keep up the good work.  I look forward to seeing your creativity.

Blessings to you all.  Thanks for visiting my blog.

Only By His Grace,


Sunday, July 3, 2011

Happy 4th of July...

Hope everyone has a wonderful time with family and friends celebrating our freedoms.

Thank you to all those who have fought and are still fighting to maintain those freedoms.

We are forever grateful!

Only By His Grace,


Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Back Door Bulletin Board...

Good Afternoon, Blog-friends!

Today's post isn't about decorating or cooking or walking or field trips.  Today's post is about a happy little accident.  You might find it interesting -- or you might find it tacky.  Either way... here it is.

Like so  many families we know, we pull into the garage and enter our home through the back door.
Everywhere we go -- we enter and exit through this door.

Last year, I hung our family dry-erase board on the back door.  Now it's easy as pie to check for important events as we leave the house.

Oh... by the way... sorry for the fuzzy pictures... :)

Now, here's the happy accident part... I just learned realized that our back door is metal.  Know what that means?

It's Magnetic!

So that means the whole back door is one big memo board. Anything I need to keep up with - school calendars, chore calendars, summer reading programs, rewards charts, extra summer freebie tickets, etc.

Here's what it looks like now. It's a little hectic, but isn't life hectic?

The kiddos chore charts. Tip: If you print your child's chore charts on regular paper 

and insert them into a plastic binder page sleeve, it becomes dry-erase(able).

Summer Reading programs and Chuck E Cheese reward sheets.

It's a great place to store those summer fun freebie tickets, too.  
You can grab 'em as you're heading out the door.

And the whole thing looks like this.

It's been so helpful to have everything together right there on the back door.  

I'm really looking forward to the school year starting... I plan to purchase a couple of the wall file boxes. I'll magnet them to the door.  One for each child.  No more lost permission slips.  No more last-minute "last day to order" school photo orders...

Wow... maybe I need a bigger back door?!?

How do you keep your family organized?

Only By His Grace,


Saturday, June 18, 2011

Getting Back to Basics...

Yesterday the kiddos and I had a bit of an outing...or two.  There are two really great haunts within a couple of miles of our house.  The first is the Corporate Headquarters of Papa John's Pizza.  Yes, you read that correctly.  Papa John's: Better Ingredients.  Better Pizza.

When they built their corporate headquarters, they also installed a massive pond, walking trail and water fall, with benches and picnic tables scattered every so often.  Why?  For the good of their employees, of course.  Who wouldn't want to come to work here when you could have lunch or a walk in such a relaxing place?  Best part?  It's completely open to the public.  Plenty of parking.  Lot's of ducks!  And a great place to bring the kiddos when they're bored stiff.

Oh...and because I don't like to be wasteful, I save all our old bread, crackers, corn bread, muffins, pancakes, etc and every couple of weeks, we come and feed the ducks.  Can you say FREE entertainment?

Here's just a glimpse.

The second cool place near our house is Veteran's Park.  It's a playground, walking trail, and Veteran's Memorial all in one.  The kids love it because they can play, we can picnic, we can "hike" and there is really cool stuff to look at, too. 

There you have it, folks.  Two field trips to two gorgeous venues -- all in one day.  

Only By His Grace,