How Clean is Your Drinking Water? {Berkey giveaway}

This post contains affiliate links. My dear beloved readers, today I am super jealous of you. Why? Because you have the chance to enter today's amazing giveaway and I'm not able to enter! I have teamed up with several bloggers from the Positively Real Media Network to give away a Berkey water filter. I have been wanting a Berkey water filter for a couple of years now. They are super well known in the "natural living bloggers" community and seem to be the best free-standing water filter out there. I want one! Since I don't own a Berkey myself (yet!), I'm going to turn things over to Positively Real Media to explain the benefits of a Berkey … [Read more...]

An Awesome and Affordable Dinner Party Menu

An Awesome and Affordable Dinner Party Menu

For Grace's wedding birthday, I came up with a simple, delicious, and affordable dinner party menu. The meal was so well received that I wanted to share it with you. The main course was crock pot cheesy pasta and beef casserole from Tammilee Tips. This recipe is so much better than regular spaghetti. The homemade sauce makes all the difference. All of my guests went back for seconds! In the picture above, I used mozzarella cheese. The recipe calls for cheddar and, I like it better with cheddar. However, you can use whatever you have on hand. There were 10 adults and 6 children at the party. I doubled the pasta recipe, and we had a … [Read more...]

My Blog’s Biggest Secret

My Blog's Biggest Secret

This post contains affiliate links. I started this blog in December 2009. Only a few short months later I wrote a post that changed my blog in ways that I could have never imagined. Suddenly this blog became bigger than a place for me to share my thoughts on saving money and living a natural life. It became a lifeline to women desperately searching for answers to the devastating question "why does my breast milk taste bad?". It all started because my 5 month old daughter, Grace, refused to take a bottle when I was gone. I was frustrated. My husband was frustrated. Babysitters were frustrated and poor little Grace was very … [Read more...]

Our Little Girl’s Wedding Birthday Party

Grace in her Wedding Birthday Dress

This post contains affiliate links. Last year Grace went through a phase where she was obsessed with watching my wedding video. She would watch it multiple times a week. Nate and I have seen our wedding video so many times that I don't think either of us will have the desire to watch it on our anniversary for a very, very long time. Because of Grace's love for weddings, my mom gave her a Melissa and Doug wedding dress for Christmas. That dressed sparked the idea in Grace's mind to have a wedding birthday party. Surprisingly, she stuck with the idea and this past weekend we had the big event for her 5th birthday. I sent out wedding … [Read more...]

10 Safer Bath and Body Products for You and Your Kids

Unfortunately, we can't trust that every item on the store shelves is safe to use, but here are 10 safer bath and body products for you and your kids. This list covers hand soap, toothpaste, diaper rash cream, shampoo, and more. Trying out these suggestions would be a great first step towards more natural living.

Grace has fallen into the trap of kid marketing. She has started asking me to buy her junk at the grocery store that is decorated with her favorite cartoon characters. I don't deprive my kids of treats, but there are some things I don't want to buy. "Grace, I'm not going to buy that because it really isn't good for you." "If it isn't good for kids, why is it here?" "Some people still buy it and eat it even though it isn't good." I'm starting to lay down the foundation with Grace that not every item in the store is an item that is good for her. This is a concept all of us know and understand. I don't think many of us are fooled … [Read more...]

10 Helpful Morning Routines From A Night Owl

10 Helpful Morning Routines From A Night Owl - tips from someone who hates getting up in the morning!

Ever since I became a stay-at-home mom 5 years ago, I've enjoyed the luxury of ditching my alarm clock on most mornings. I set my alarm for church or other special events, but most of the time I wake up when Grace crawls into bed with me or when I hear Noah calling for me. Every expert under the sun says that waking up before your children is the key to starting your day off right. Clearly I'm not doing things right, but I'm a night owl. 100%. Well it is time for things to change because this night owl needs to get her little girl to preschool two days a week. Take a look at my cutie on her first day. I can't even handle it! 10 … [Read more...]

10 Affordable Housewarming Gifts

10 Affordable Housewarming Gifts - great ideas that will fit any budget!

This post contains affiliate links. It is fun to bless someone with a housewarming gift, but it isn't fun to break your budget trying to do it. Each of these affordable housewarming gifts will cost you less than $30, most of them are less than $20, and some are even less than $10. 10 Affordable Housewarming Gifts 1. Baked Goods - Any homemade treat will do, but I especially like the idea of bread. You can write something in the card about "breaking bread together" in their new home. (Don't forget that the bread doesn't need to be made in your home! Picking some up from a local bakery is just as good.) 2. Flowers & … [Read more...]

Looking Back at 5 Years of Beach Vacation Blessings

"No matter what the size is of your bank account, never doubt your ability to bless someone else." - SimplyRebekah.com

My husband is the director of a nonprofit and one of the donors to the nonprofit has gifted us with a week at his beach house for the past 5 summers. I can't get over how incredibly awesome that has been for our family. This donor has such a generous heart. It means so much to us that he recognizes the "missionary type" work that my husband does and wants to provide some much needed rest and relaxation for our family. In honor of our 5th year at the beach this month, I wanted to take stroll down memory lane and share some photos from the past 5 years. It is crazy to see how my little ones have grown. Enjoy the photos as I cry in the … [Read more...]

Salsa Canning Vlog: a silly and ridiculous “how to” video

Salsa Canning Vlog: a silly and ridiculous "how to" video

This post contains affiliate links. I was home alone. It was glorious. There were a million things that I could have spent my time doing, but the ripe tomatoes were calling my name. It was time to make salsa. I decided to do what any "normal" person would do in this situation and I live vlogged my salsa making adventure on Instagram. All night long I sent 15 second clips of salsa making madness out into the land of social media. The salsa canning vlog clips were silly, ridiculous, and poor quality. They were shot on my iPhone through the Instagram app. My kitchen lighting was horrific. My hair wasn't looking much better. I was … [Read more...]

Taking My Deck Furniture From Drab to Fab!

Final Before & After Photo

This post was originally published on July 8, 2011 and it contains affiliate links. For our wedding, Nate & I were given a fun little outdoor table and chair set. It is made out of wood and looks so pretty when we don't leave it outside all winter long! After a few years of weather damage our table ended up looking like this: Isn't this just a beautiful shade of gray?? Thankfully, this is an easy fix. It is especially since I used to work in a woodworking factory. For 3 summers I mastered the fine art of sanding wood. For my little table & chairs set I just borrowed my brother-in-law's hand sander and went to … [Read more...]