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This Is How We Spend Our Days

16 Mar

I used to be a work-aholic! I still kind of am.. but I have to say I have been much better about actually taking time off to be with these girls. After all, that is why I wanted to be a virtual assistant to begin with!

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We like to be lazy in this house on our days off. Wake up when we went, eat when we want, and stay home all day. Heck, sometimes we don’t even get out of our jammies!

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Now that I’ve gotten used to this time with them, I refuse to let it go. We play more games, craft, make messes, clean them up, but most importantly, we just spend time together.

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As you can see, since Payton is at home with me all day, she likes to plan to go out all the time. Emma on the other hand, doesn’t mind doing absolutely nothing for a while πŸ˜‰

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I think the girls are enjoying it just as much as we are.

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Lexi is too πŸ˜‰

I Made A Basket!

14 Mar

Alright, so it wasn’t exactly what I had intended but I love it! I found this amazing tutorial on how to sew a basket and immediately had a flashback to Christmas. I had been seeing on pinterest all these Christmas tree’s in baskets and loved the idea of it.

A simple and minimal Christmas Tree made with DIY clay stars! See 10 more Christmas Tree Decorating Ideas on dreambookdesign.com:

When I had gone online to look for a basket, the prices stopped me in my tracks. I was already on a Christmas budget and was determined to spend most of my money on the girls this year (we have a big family!). So I put it aside thinking I’d look into it later. Well we all know what happens, I completely forget about it!

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Then I saw a tutorial for how to make a basket and thought to myself, hey this could actually be affordable if my only cost is rope and thread! I was right. I can save a ton of money making this on my own, but I didn’t buy enough rope to try out that big of a basket, so I ended up with this size instead:

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Turns out we really needed this size anyways! Brian and I have had a hard time sharing bowls to keep our keys and things in. Either they are too deep and someone gets stuck on the bottom or they are too big for the table. I feel like this was a great compromise!

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I am proud of my little basket and plan on making more! I’m actually in the middle of a sisal one right now!

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Let’s see if I can figure out how to make a Christmas tree basket before Christmas next year πŸ˜‰ haha!

My Little Gymnast

11 Mar

Okay, so we have tried ballet, karate, and now we are doing gymnastics! I love the parks and recreation here because they have so many things to choose from. Each thing is about 6 weeks long so it gives the kids a good way to “feel out” different things and not spend a whole year (or a whole year’s budget) on something they may decide they don’t like anymore!

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She’s the one in the front with the white leotard on! Each thing we have tried Emma has announced that she loves it and it was a great a choice. This time she came out with a huge grin on her face saying I want to do gymnastics EVERY SUNDAY!

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Again she’s the one in the white leotard stretching back. I have a feeling this one will last longer than six weeks!

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I’m just excited she is trying new things.

These Girls!

9 Mar

Everyone likes to ask me how Emma adjusted to Payton. At first it takes me a minute to respond because I have to go back and remember what it was like before they were inseparable!

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When Payton was first born, Emma didn’t really respond to her at all. It’s almost like she had tunnel vision and didn’t even notice her in my arms. She has always been an independent player, and when I got home with Payton, she just kept playing!

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I’m sure she noticed when I would tell her to hold on, let me get Payton set and then I’ll help you, but she never got upset about it. I think I do remember a time or two where she seemed frustrated and I thought it might be from sharing my time but she had also just started Kindergarten DAYS after I came home with Payton.

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She would be gone all day and come home in the afternoon. Payton would sleep and we’d get some time together, then dinner, then quiet time, then bed time. It was all still the same routine. It wasn’t until Payton started to smile and laugh that Emma got interested in her. I think the day she made Payton laugh she fell in love.

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Now they spend most of their time side by side. Payton loves to hand Emma blocks and Emma loves to build castles, then Payton likes to know them down. Emma reads to her and share her colored pencils. Payton loves to chase her around the room and dance with her. Seeing them together all the time really makes it hard to remember what it was like before this.

Dinning Out for Lunch

7 Mar

Payton and I were invited to Fredrick Maryland for a lunch date and even though it was a rainy day, we had blast!

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If you have never been to Frederick but are near the area, I suggest taking a day to stroll around. It is beautiful! There are so many great shops and restaurants, the people are friendly, and the atmosphere is stunning.

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I met with a friend to catch up after a year! We both were pregnant the last time we had met and it was so nice to meet each other’s little ones. Of course, Payton was excited to get out of the house and be entertained by other people!!

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We ate at a little place called Firestone’s Culinary Tavern. This place was amazing! The staff was attentive, the food was on point, and you could really tell that they take great care in every detail.

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Needless to say, we will be back! Next time I plan on taking Emma and making a day of it!

Dr. Seuss Week

4 Mar

It’s been Dr. Seuss week at school and today they were supposed to dress up as their favorite character. Emma immediately screamed HORTON HEARS A WHO!!

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We went to walmart and raided the craft section. We got shiny paper, tulle, pom poms, pipe cleaners, glitter glue, quick dry glue, and a headband! I already had packing tape, scissors, a toilet paper role, elastic and a sock on hand.

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We cut out ears and taped them to the headband, then used pipe cleaners for the hair. I just twisted them together around the headband to stay.

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We used tulle, a toilet paper roll, tape, and elastic to make the nose. Paper and elastic for the mask with some pipe cleaner eyebrows!

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And a sock with a cut up end for the tail! The flower was pom poms glued together and glued to pipe cleaners that I made into a bracelet for her so she didn’t have something to carry around all day at school. There was a little silver glitter speck on the flower for whoville.

Needless to say she was so excited to go to school today!

Week One of January 2016

2 Jan

Every year we make new goals and aspirations. Every year we are determined to make it the best year yet! Every year we challenge ourselves to create the life we have always wanted to live.

This year I am hoping for some change for my whole family. I intend to keep moving forward to a better life for my family because they are pretty darn cool and let’s be honest, I NEED TO GET MOVING!

This week is the start of where I am sharing my adventures in improving my family’s lives. To get me pumped up and excited here are a few things I have been listening to / doing / reading / etc:

Pandora Station: Today’s Adult Hits

It’s a fun mix of some of the most popular music that makes you want to get up and dance! Why it’s labeled adult hits? I have no idea because I sure has heck don’t feel like an adult πŸ˜‰ most days that is. What motivated me to click the station? Meghan Trainor was on the front cover.

Podcasts: Raise Your Hand and Say Yes

You have good taste. Trust it.

Specifically Tara Swiger on Enthusiasm which was all about having confidence and moving forward even if it doesn’t immediately feel successful. It encourages learning by trial and error which I love, and gave me a positive outlook on where I want to move forward.

Essential Oils: Diffusing Oils

I am waking up to an amazing diffuser every morning that is putting the sweet citrus scent of CheerΒ into my life. It’s just the pick me up I need in the cold weather when I wish I was on a hot beach soaking up the rays. It’s also giving me that extra boost I need to push through the have-to do list to and move on to the can’t-wait-to-do-this!!!! list.

What I’m Doing: Keeping Track of it all!

2016 daily goal tracker at elisejoy.com

This one came from the lovely podcast above, but it’s a checklist I love. Why? Maybe because it has bubble numbers that I can fill in which is kind of weird since those dreaded bubble tests haunt me from high school! Coloring something in? COUNT ME IN! But in all seriousness, I’m also keeping a list on the back of it with what I did to make me see how cool I really end up being this year πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‰ I hope..

So what exactly do I mean but moving forward this year? I want more craft time with Emma, I want more house projects with my hubby, I want to take more pictures of the girls, I want to share all these moments so I don’t forget them. I want to each day, feel like I am taking a step forward for a better life for them.

Wanna move with me? Join me on facebook to see more!

Moments I Don’t Want to Forget

10 Dec

These girls have been amazing to watch as they grow up. It’s so much fun to watch them when they have no idea I am even there. I wish I could be a fly on the wall and just enjoy watching their life go by!

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So much as changed for Emma. First grade did not start out. She lost a little spark in her eye for school and I could see her excitement and joy for it dwindling. We worked really hard to encourage her to make the best of what she could.

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Although it’s been a struggle, I think she’s starting to adjust to it. She really is a brilliant little girl, her grades are coming back with all A’s, and she’s learning things I never expected her to know at this age. I just want her to keep that spark in her eyes and joy for learning alive.

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Payton is growing like a weed! This girl can eat me out of house and home! She loves to “nack” (snack) all day long and is at the point in her life where she get’s seriously ecstatic when you understand what she is trying to say!

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She is our little explorer. If she doesn’t have something in her hand or getting into something, I am shocked! She is a busy little one and I could sit and watch her explore for hours at a time.

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The two of these girls have a special bond. Emma loves to make her giggle, tickle her, and take care of all her needs. Payton likes to steal all of Emma’s things, clean up after her (while Emma is still playing with whatever it is), and feed her snacks because she has to be hungry according to Payton!

I know their relationship will grow together and apart throughout their life, but I’ll enjoy this togetherness while I can πŸ˜‰

We Come and We Go

6 Dec

As I was sitting down yesterday after an eventful exciting day with the girls, I realized I was so tired of putting off the things I love the most. I haven’t been crafting as much as used to, I haven’t been writing here as much as I’d love to, I haven’t taken care of myself because I am so busy taking care of everything else! It seems like I’ve been slowly realizing this as I’ve started putting me back in the front seat.

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Recently I’ve pulled back out my yarn and hook and starting making things for myself instead of my etsy page. I had worked so hard on my etsy shop making things I thought people would want to buy that I wasn’t enjoying it anymore. I took some time to think about what I wanted to make for me or my family and the ideas started rolling in!

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How many scarves and hats have I made and Emma didn’t even have a set of her own? She had outgrown all of hers and although Payton has been loving the previous one’s Emma passed down, it was about time Emma has a set of her own! I let her pick out some of the yarn I already had in stock and I couldn’t be more proud of my hard work!

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Since we moved into this house we haven’t had a wreath on our door. I know it seems ridiculous to be upset about that, but that was one of the things I was looking forward to when we owned our own home. Three years and I hadn’t made one wreath for our own home!!

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Now I am happy wreath on my door home owner! Granted it’s only one, but I do have a few more ideas in mind. I am so proud of the fact that I didn’t attempt to buy sixteen of these, stock up on premade ones, and buy shipping boxes with the intention of selling them, because honestly I don’t want to!

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What I plan on making is a happy home! I hope you all will join in me in my process of finding what’s important for me and my family and enjoy us as we come and go. I might not be consistent on this blog, but I will be here when I can.

Make Your Needs Into Wants

16 Aug

It’s amazing what the simplest thing a child can say to change your perspective.

I’ve always been a dreamer. Someone who is looking ahead at her future trying to grasp what other’s deem impossible. Most often than not, those dreams consist of a stress free lifestyle centered around my family. More often than not, the reality is that I am working so hard I have to balance work, life, and family. I feel like this is something that most suffer from.

Make your needs into wants

Emma said to me the other day “You never want to play with me.”

That hit me hard. It’s not that I don’t want to play with her at all but in her mind that’s what she sees. It’s been a great summer but it’s also been the first summer she’s ever had following her first year of school. We spent a majority of the summer entertained by activities and vacation and most of that came to a halt this past month due to preparation for school! This was also the first summer she had to share me with Payton.

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My initial response was, “I want to play with you, but I have to get some work done hun.”

It wasn’t later that I realized to her there aren’t have to’s. If you aren’t playing with me and you are doing something else you are doing it because you want to do that more. It’s clear as day to them in their mind.

If you want to know what we did, you can read my last post:

Putting It Down

I’m not saying everyone can do what we did and just put technology down for a few days. I’m not suggesting that we give everything up for our kids. I do suggest we start doing what we want to do more often that what we feel like we have to do.

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It’s amazing how much your perspective can change when you change one simple word. I challenge you all to change all of your “have to’s” to “want to’s” for one day and see how it effects your mood and your decisions.

How many things do you do on a daily basis that you say you have to do that really you just want to do. Do you feel less stressed and overwhelmed when you say want to instead of have to?

Or maybe you really feel like you have to do them but when you change it to want to – you realize that it’s not that important to you after all. Is there a way you can take those have to’s out of your life? Why can’t we all strive to do what we want to do and have success doing it?

Just a random thought for you today. I hope you enjoyed it! If so, please let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear if anyone successfully implements this in their daily routine.

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