Monday, September 30, 2013

I'm Back!

Arghhhhh!  I feel like I am always apologizing for my absence from this here little blog!

I would really like to be more regular in my posting - but life always seems to get in the way.  Isn't that everyone's story these days?

Lately, I have been understanding more and more what it means to be a "soccer mom".  I spend most of my late afternoons, evenings and weekends either sitting in my car waiting for a practice/tutoring session to end, or watching one of my children play or perform!

Somewhere in there, I do find time to get a few projects done.

Just yesterday I was able to finish a wreath that I had purchased the supplies to make, but just hadn't had the time to get started on.  It actually took less time than I thought it would and turned out really nice!

We are getting ready to start a major renovation project at our house - removing a wall and installing hardwoods throughout our first floor.  I'm excited to keep you posted with pics throughout the process!

The J9

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Happy 2013!

I really love the promise of the new year - an opportunity to set new goals and get a fresh start on some old ones!

I always like to start out with a word of the year, following the example of one of my favorite bloggers, Ali Edwards.  My word this year is "ACT".  I really want to work to tackle my problem with procrastination in all areas of my life.  I know that if I can stop procrastinating and begin "acting" I will decrease the amount of stress I feel each and every day.  I'll keep you posted on how that goes:)

Today I will work on my list of goals so that I can share those here with all of you!

Also on my list of things to do today - get started on cleaning up and organizing my office!  I decided to participate in an online challenge to get organized in 2013.  First assignment is office - and I am ready to make mine more workable!

Here's hoping you all have a wonderful 2013 and that we all reach our goals!

- The J9

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Laundry Room Reveal

We are finally finished!!!!!

We have been working on this project in stages for a while now.

I won't bore you with all of the details.  I'll just share the eye candy!

Well - first I'll share the "Before" pics:

It all just felt so dark and heavy to me.

Now for the eye candy "after" shots:

There's actually a bin next to the small coat tree that corrals our beach towels in the summer and the kids' hats and gloves in the winter.

My favorite parts of this room:

  • The countertop over the washer and dryer.  In the words of my good friend, Mindy, "it's life changing!".
  • The grey paint on the walls!
  • White cabinets and trim!
  • The amazing ceiling treatment!
  • The fun shutter/key-holder project!  (I'll share how I did that with you later.)
  • My unexpected little collage wall!
  • It's so pretty - I just want to keep it clean and organized!
I would still like to install some hooks, or a better way to keep my kids backpacks organized since this is where we come into and go out of our house most regularly.  But, I need to keep pondering that one.

This little room is making me feel very motivated to continue painting our woodwork white and bring the grey into my kitchen, dining room and the other rooms of our first floor!

Thanks for looking!

- The J9

Monday, October 15, 2012

Taking Control of Dinner!

So, the last few months have been chaotic! We seem to have a lot more activities in the evening and I'm working more hours.

With all of this extra chaos, I have been having a hard time getting meals planned and on the table each night!  And, for those that know me well, I always start each week with a menu plan. Lately, though, that hasn't been enough!

This week I decided to menu plan as usual, but took some advice from a fellow blogger, and prepped as much of our meals at the beginning of the week. I also updated our "favorites" list to include more crock-pot friendly, grab and go meals. I keep this list in the front of my recipe book and refer to it when I menu plan each week. It really helps when I'm feeling a little less creative about what to cook!

Here's our menu for the week:

Monday - Baked Potato Bar & Salad
Tuesday - Meatball Grinders with chips and fruit
Wednesday - Breakfast
Thursday - Sandwich Night
Friday - Dinner at Friends
Saturday - Best Ever Burgers
Sunday - Pizza Night

After dropping the kids at school today, I headed to the grocery store and picked up the few things I didn't already have on hand. When I got back, I did something I have been putting off for a few weeks.  I cleaned out the fridge. You don't even want to know what kind of science experiments I found! I knew I would need to start with a clean slate/fridge to make sure I was successful this week:)

After the fridge was clean and all of my groceries were put away:

  • I cleaned and prepped all of the veges for each meal.  
  • I even prepped some fruits and veges for snacks and lunches.  
  • I cleaned and prepped the potatoes to go into the slow cooker.
  • I prepped the extras for our potato bar (cheese, sour cream, bacon, etc).  
  • I made a batch of my meatballs and packaged what I would need for meatball grinders
  • I packaged the rest for the freezer.  
  • I made a big pitcher of lemonade (mostly so my youngest will stop asking for a soda every night with dinner).  
  • I packaged up the Banana Crumb Muffins I made last night for a quick, grab-and-go breakfast.

It only took me about an hour and forty-five minutes to get it all together. And, now my meals are as easy as grabbing the right bags and cooking things up! I am feeling so good about how much time this will save me this week!  I'll let you know how it works out:)

Do you have ideas for keeping your sanity preparing meals for your busy family?  

I would love to hear them!

Ok - I'm off to tame the laundry.

Really wishing there was a laundry fairy about now!

- The J9