Sunday, April 1, 2012

My Bear

Today is my sweet middle boy's birthday. He turned five. This morning when he woke up and I looked at him he said "I feel bigger today!". By 10am we were in the grocery store parking lot and he was reminding me that "Five is still little Mama...little enough to be carried, and little enough to get a ride in the cart.". My boy is a master at manipulating a situation. His smile is so contagious, his laugh warms you from the inside out, and he can melt you with his eyes that are as crystal blue as the sky.

He loves to joke.  And he really is funny.  He can turn your mood from bad to good in no time flat.

My favorite story to tell him is a story from when he was only weeks old.  His "big" brother was just a mere 2 years old...I remember looking at him next to this giant toddler and thinking how old, how independent 2 is.  We were walking in a parking lot and my big boy said to me "Mama, I tired.  Carry me?" to which I replied "Nathan, you are a BIG boy!  Owen is a baby.  Big boys walk!"  Imagine telling a 2 year old he has to walk because he's so big.  At the time it was the only thing I could do...walking through a parking lot holding a 2 year old and a newborn in an infant seat would be near impossible.  So I did what any mother would do...I found a solution.  My solution was to make that baby walk.  Nathan did it with grace.  He never complained about it, never whined about it.  He just walked.

Looking back I realize how fleeting time is.  How quick they grow, they change, and pretty soon, they are too big to carry through a parking lot.  Too big to crawl into your lap.  Too big to need you like they did when they were little.  When in the moment you are always wishing for them to be a little bigger, do a little more on their own, be a little more independent.

Now here we are, 5 years later.  Picture me, walking through a parking lot with a 7 year old, a 5 year old, and an 18 month old.  My sweet baby Owen will look at me and say "Carry me, Mama!" to which I reply "I stopped carrying Nathan like that when he was 2!  It's time for you to be a big boy and walk!"  My sweet middle you know what he says?  "I am a big boy!  But I'll always be your baby."

Yes, baby, you always will be.  Happy Birthday.

I started this post on 3/28-4 days ago.  It's amazing to me given the content that life got away from me once again and here I am finishing in a quiet moment 4 days later.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Remember Me?

It's me, I'm here.  It's been a long time.  Life gets in the way sometimes, you know?  I feel like I lost the big picture...what I really wanted this blog to be about.  About me.  About being a mama.  Mama isn't just a motherly term, you know.  I feel like it's an identity.  Mama to me is a word that just doesn't mean "mom".  I love being a mom, don't get me wrong, but that's not all I'm about.  At then end of the day I'm still "Just Jill"(Name that show for a hug)!

So I want this blog to represent me.  Who I am.  What I love.  I'm going to do that.  I hope to update each day. I bet sometimes it will be super hum drum and boring.  But some days that's just who I am I guess.  And that's ok!  Someone with an exciting life each and every day bounds to get bored too I bet.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

{Free} Greeting Card from Cards Direct



Free Greeting Card from Cards Direct

Head over to Facebook and you can score a free greeting card from Cards Direct.  You will have to like Cards Direct on Facebook in order to request your free gretting card.  You can chose from a birthday, thank you or congratulations card!  I always find myself running out the door to something and needing a card at the last minute, so this is great!

Request your free greeting card here!  Allow 2-3 weeks for delivery...the limit is one card per address, while supplies last.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Have you ever been to this blog before?  If not, check it out.  I seriously, as my sister-in-law would say, have an extreme girl crush on the fabulous mama that runs this blog!  She has seriously changed the way I look at organizing the small spaces in my house, and made me realize that you really can pack a huge organizing punch in every room in your house!

So after perusing her site for a while hours and hours, I planned an attack for a few of the "problem" areas in our house.  It's still a work in progress, but I wanted to share with you because I am so proud!  Today I'll show you two of my completed projects, and then the project in process.

One of the main issues with my little middle man is that he is a non-stop eater.  I swear, the kid has a hole in his leg that prevents the food from sticking around.  He will eat all day.  So I wanted to create a Real Simple snack station in the refrigerator.  The rule is one snack from the bin between breakfast and lunch, and one snack from the bin between lunch and dinner.  I put carrot sticks, cheese sticks, cheese cubes, apple slices, grapes and yogurt(both sticks and cups) into the bin, so he's making healthy choices when he snacks.  So far it has been a HUGE hit.  Gone are the days of him constantly asking me for a snack, and he loves that he can just reach into the bin and pick whatever he wants.  The plan is to make the same type of container in the pantry, and fill it with dry snacks that they can choose from as well.  The whole project only cost me $3.50; the cost of the small bin for the fridge.

The next thing I tackled was under the sink.  We recently remodeled our kitchen, and I have been looking and looking for the product that was "just right" to organize all of my cleaning supplies and stockpile of dishwasher detergent, sponges, etc.  Let me tell you, it is harder to find something than you would think!  I never found something that worked for us.  One day I was browsing around on Pinterest and found a great idea for putting a tension rod into your cabinet to hold spray cleaners and it hit me.  That was all I really needed!  This way, the cleaners that I use everyday would be front and center, and I could use one side for my stockpile of detergent, and the other side could house my household cleaners that I use less often.

So I grabbed a small enough tension rod from Amazon and when it came I got to work.  First I put down non-adhesive shelf liner, stashed away all my Cascade, sponges and Jet Dry that we will use later, put the tension rod up and voila!  The whole project took me less than 15 minutes to do, and it's such a breath of fresh air to open that cabinet now!  It went from a sloppy, disorganized mess to this!
The tension rod holds an extra roll of paper towels, our everyday spray and glass cleaner, and an extra kitchen towel.  The organizer on the right I re-purposed from another room in our house, and it holds all of my cleaning supplies.  I just pull the whole thing out and go room to room with it!  Way in the back is my extra dish soap, dish detergent, sponges, etc.  Fear not!  It is securely fastened with a child lock on the outside.  :o)

The final project I want to show you today is our memo station.  It is still a work in progress, but I am glad we are starting to put it to use.  I originally got this idea from Jen over at IHeartOrganizing...we already had a coat hook and shoe basket in place, but I was really looking for somewhere to stash ALL THE PAPERS that come in and out of this house on a day-to-day basis.  So, I went to work on finding an affordable solution.  I came across these super simple mail bins at The Container Store.  They were super simple to put together, and I affixed them to the wall with mini command hooks.

I still want to add a name on each pocket - one for each of the school boys, one for my dear husband and I, and one "to-do" bin that can hold unsigned permission slips, a bill that has to be paid, a Scholastic book order, or our current Market Day order that has to be picked up.  So far so good!  We have been using the bins with great success!  I will update you as the project moves along.

Thanks for looking at what I've been doing around my house...all these additions have made me proud to call this my home!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Random post for Friday...

I think about my blog a lot...what to write, what to share, what pictures should I show?  For example, yesterday afternoon I was making one of my middle man's favorite lunches, puzzle sandwiches.  I took pictures all during the process with my phone, and then sat at the computer and stared at it.  Why?  Because I wasn't sure it was something someone would want to hear about.

But then I thought to myself, who cares?  If at least one person enjoys the post, then it makes a difference, right?

So I guess this random post is to ask, what do you want to see?  Recipes?  Kid stories?  Coupons and deals?  Giveaways?  Movie reviews?  I'm not sure I can help you with the last one, as it takes me FOREVER to catch up.

Comment below and help a blogger out!  :o)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Newest Baby Cousin <3

Red Plum Dash for Deals - $1.50 off any 1 Smucker's product

Red Plum, the folks who bring you Sunday coupon supplements, have entered into the deal-a-day market with their new "Dash For Deals" promotion.  Offers include printable coupons, coupon codes, samples and discounts on food, beauty products, dining and online services.

Today's dash is $1.50 off anyone Smucker's jam, jelly, preserves or fruit spread.  There is no limitation on size, and it doesn't expire until 1/31/2012!  This is a great coupon, as I've seen Smucker's jam and jelly on sale for around $1.77 multiple times already this year!

If you are interested in this coupon, click here to grab it!  Quantities are limited on these deals, so hurry!