October 31, 2013

Why I Don't Celebrate Halloween

I debated writing this post because I know that most of you celebrate Halloween and you might not like   reading anything negative about it. I might even loose a follower or two over this, I'm sure. I understand that people don't like to read/hear that traditions they've been practicing for years are wrong. I get that, but I felt I should write this post because it's important to me for you to know why I don't celebrate it. I want to clarify that this post in NO WAY is meant to make you feel bad about celebrating Halloween or to say that I am better than you because I don't celebrate it. NOT TRUE! I can probably write a FULL blog post on my imperfect ways. (please don't ask me to write it though)

I grew up not celebrating Halloween. Around this time of year I would often feel left out when kids would come bragging about the amount of candy they got and how awesome their costumes were. I never really understood why I didn't celebrate it, I just knew it was bad. I mean it's kinda obvious that death, skulls and scary things have nothing to do with Christ. Darkness + Light just don't go together. That I understood. I just never knew how to explain when asked why? 

I found THIS article on KLOVE a couple years ago and it helped me understand it better. I won't bore you with details on the history of Halloween which I'm sure you already have an idea of where it comes from. If not then you can find the history here.  There is nothing "nice" about Halloween. Remember when I shared this post on why I don't watch scary movies? It's basically the same thing. Why celebrate fear, death and darkness? It just doesn't make sense to me. 

Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, rebuke and expose them. 
- Ephesians 5:11 (NLT)

When you find out the history of Halloween and how it began it's easy to see that this "Holiday" is nothing short of evil and although many aspects of it have been made "kid friendly" it doesn't change the fact of what Halloween is TRULY about.  

So I don't celebrate Halloween not only because of it's roots and where it comes from but mainly because deep down in my heart I know Halloween in no way helps me in my personal spiritual walk with Christ. I choose to continue with what my parents instilled in me and I will not let my kids celebrate it. I don't want them to just "fit it" and do what everyone else is doing. I know what Halloween is about and I will not have my kids participate and celebrate something that has evil roots especially something where Christ is completely absent.  

Again this post is not intended to make anyone feel bad. It's purely to answer the "Why don't you celebrate Halloween?" question I get often around this time of year. 

If you are still following me after this post... you are awesome! ;) 
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October 30, 2013

Girl Behind The Blog - My First Blog Post

video

I've got a VLOG for you all today!
I am reading my first blog post in a "dramatic" way! It's not SUPER dramatic but I tried. For some reason my dramatic reading came out a little different that I pictured in my head. Please excuse my messy hair! I did put on make up although for some reason it looks like I'm wearing TONS in this video (weird!). I'm only wearing eyeliner and a litle concealer. Also I kinda studdered a little towards the end cause I was trying to read as fast as possible so I wouldn't make this video super long. Also I kinda bob my head side to side for some reason? Ok that is all! Enjoy the video!

Find my very first vlog HERE.
Find my very first blog post HERE.

UPDATE: Obviously I should have googled what "dramatic reading" meant. Because my video is WAY different than everyone else's. I feel a little dumb but oh well! lol I was being myself and I guess that's the whole point of these vids right? ;)

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WOHH

October 28, 2013

Questions With Sarah - Age 4

I stole borrowed this idea from That Mama Gretchen and thought this would be fun to do with my own kiddos so I'll start today with little miss Sarah...

What is your favorite color? Pink
What is your favorite toy? Strawberry Shortcake
What is your favorite fruit? Grapes
What is your favorite tv show? Martha Speaks
What is your favorite thing to eat for breakfast? Oatmeal
What is your favorite thing to eat for lunch? Peanut Butter Sandwiches
What is your favorite outfit? My pink skirt and smurfs shirt
MOM'S NOTE: She really loves that pink tutu skirt. 
If it were up to her she would wear that thing all day everyday!
What is your favorite game? I want to choose PBS Kids
What is your favorite snack? Mango
MOM'S NOTE: She was eating dried mango at the time.
This little girl is a snacker! She walks into the pantry several times a day.
What is your favorite animal? Bunnies
What is your favorite song? ABC's
What is your favorite book? Curious George
Who is your best friend? Mom
MOM'S NOTE: Except when she's mad at me! lol
She will say "you're not my best friend anymore!"
What is your favorite cereal? The honey one
What is your favorite thing to do? Play
What is your favorite drink? Sprite
What is your favorite restaurant? Chili's
MOM'S NOTE: We've been to Chili's maybe twice? 
I am not sure why but ever since they built one nearby she's
been wanting to go and says it's her favorite!
What do you want to be when you grow up? A Doctor
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October 25, 2013

October Sponsors Giveaway

Hello Friends! My lovely sponsors and I have a great giveaway for you all today. 
Enter to win a $20 Target Gift Card + $20 in shop credit to Bluebird Cottage Designs. 

I'd LOVE to have you as a sponsor and have you join in next month's group giveaway!
I am looking for Sponsors for the month of NOVEMBER. You can purchase your AD spot HERE. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway
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October 23, 2013

We Are Family

This past weekend we took a family road trip to visit my sister Wendy. She lives about 3hrs away from us so we don't see her as often as we'd like. We had a great time and were able to take a full family photo together which is awesome! I wish Levi were looking at the camera and Sarah weren't holding a biscuit sandwich in a wrapper but it will do. 

As I look at this picture I can't help but be thankful and feel truly blessed. If it wasn't for God this picture would be of two people instead of ten. You see my parents were told they wouldn't be able to have kids. Despite what the doctors said seven years of trying, praying and trusting God they had me. It was truly a miracle of God! As you can see my parents now have three daughters, two son in laws and three grandkids. Thank you Lord for my family!
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October 21, 2013

Hooray It's Allergy/Cold Season!

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Kleenex but all my opinions are my own. #KleenexAllergy #pmedia http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO
I hope you can read through the sarcasm in my title because NOPE I'm not too thrilled about it! Don't get me wrong I LOVE Fall! Boots, scarves and pumpkin spiced lattes are my kinda language but along with it comes stuffy noses, sore throats and occasionally fevers. This is what my nightstand mostly looks like around this time of year...
In fact I was sick these last TWO WEEKS and just started feeling better this week. My days were spent sucking on cough drops, drinking chamomile tea and using lots and lots of Kleenex tissues. I actually keep a box in every room of the house. I mean they've got so many cute colors and patterns it's easy to find one that matches your decor...
My daughter Sarah is turning out to be just like me. Right down to the sicky child-ness (made that up). Growing up I would get sick often, I was the "sicky" child. When we moved to Texas from Illinois it seemed to help, I wouldn't get sick as often but then I developed seasonal allergies. 

If you live in the Austin area chances are you suffer from seasonal allergies. If you move here then prepare to suffer... from allergies that is because Austin is AWESOME otherwise! Turns out I'm allergic to Oak which is particularly high around March-April. My daughter doesn't suffer from allergies thankfully but she does get sick pretty often. This little girl likes to keep a box of Kleenex in her room and let me tell ya, she goes through that box fast!  
It's great having tissues at home but what about when you're out and about running errands and your kid has got a runny nose? Have you ever had to use your shirt? Yup, been there! I actually purchased a Kleenex go pack last year because I saw them at the Target check out and they looked so cute! I'm glad I did because they REALLY came in handy... saved a couple of my shirts!
I like to keep a pack or two in my diaper bag. They're cute and convenient! Win-win!
If you haven't stocked up on Kleenex yet then I've got a deal for you! Even if you do have a couple boxes already, it wouldn't hurt to get a couple more right? So head on over to Target and use this Coupon:
 Buy Kleenex 4pack, get free wallet pack (2-pk) or pocket pack (3-pk) FREE: http://goo.gl/186og3
(while supplies last)
Looks like I'm all set for this allergy/cold season! Are you?
Do you suffer from seasonal allergies?
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October 18, 2013

FIVE ON FRIDAY

(please excuse my chipped nails)
ONE // PSL
Need I say more? I love pupkin spiced lattes! What's your favorite Starbucks drink? 

TWO // Road Trip
We are taking a little road trip this weekend to visit my little sister and her husband. I'm so excited! We haven't gone to her neck of the woods since before Levi was born and although she's come to visit many times it's just exciting to take a little road trip once in a while! 

THREE // Shopping
I need to go shopping for fall/winter clothes! Jeans in particular. I got rid of most of my jeans before I had Levi because they were old and I just never felt goo wearing them. Do you have a favorite jean brand? I like Levi's but don't LOVE them. I need to find me a brand I absolutely love!

FOUR // Stitch Fix
I finally signed up for my first box this week and am so excited! It is scheduled for mid November which is perfect! I hope I get something to wear for Thanksgiving. 

FIVE // Voice
As you know I was sick for about two weeks and I lost my voice for about three of those days. I still haven't gotten my voice back 100% which is sorta worrying me. I love to sing and I've been singing this week and I sound different, I don't like it. Has your voice changed after loosing it for a while? 

Have a wonderful weekend friends!
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October 15, 2013

FIVE CHEESY PHOTOS I TOOK OF MY FIRSTBORN

   I have a couple friends who have just had their first baby and they like to post pictures of their cuties all over their facebook and instagram. Some of these pictures are really cute and others are just plain cheesy. When I see one of these "cheesy" pictures I can't help but judge a little. I mean I was never one of those first time wanna-be photographer moms right? WRONG! 

  I was browsing through old photos the other day when I came upon these lovelies of my firstborn. Turns out I was one of those moms. I guess in a way I still am, I mean I can't stop shooting and posting pictures of my kids. It's what moms do! I gotta say though I think my photography skills have improved.. at least a little. So here's the evidence... (it's ok if you laugh at me, I DID!)

1. I PUT HIM IN A BASKET

I don't think he liked it very much. 
 2. I OVER EDITED 
To my defense a pop of color in a black and white picture was totally in back in 2006! 

3. BE MY VALENTINE? 
Nope that's not a satin sheet or even a blanket it's my old gown from high school that I layed as a background. That flower? I don't even know what to say. You can bearly tell in the pic unless you look closely but I even made him wear an "I LOVE YOU" bib.

4. I TRIED TO RECREAT THIS TYPE OF POSE/PHOTO...
and FAILED...

4. I PUT A COAT ON HIM... IN THE SUMMER
I remember buying this coat on Ebay and being all excited about it!
 
Are you a "cheesy" photo taking mom?
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October 11, 2013

FREEBIE FRIDAY - OCTOBER

FIRST OF ALL notice anything new? YUP, I got a new look! If you are reading on a reader you might want to click on over to my site to check it out. So what do ya'll think? There are still a couple things I need to tweak but overall I am happy with it. 

Now on to today: I started FREEBIE FRIDAY while back where every first Friday of the month I have a freebie for ya'll. It lasted three months. I'm sorry I haven't kept up with it but I will do my best this time to have something for ya'll every month.
If you follow me on instagram you may have seen me post this verse. This verse is exactly what I needed this week... 
There's lots going on lately and I just feel tired. I feel spiritually, physically and emotionally tired. I feel weak. Some things I've already shared with you like Sarah getting surgery and me being really sick this week and then some other things I haven't shared yet. I feel like it's been just one thing after another and I feel I can't take it anymore sometimes... then I read this verse this week and it was exactly what I needed. I don't need to be strong. I need to be trusting. I need to trust that although I can't, MY GOD CAN! He is my strength! I don't know what these next couple of weeks will be like but I know I have a powerful God who is in control. I know we all have had these kind of times in our lives where we feel weak. If you have had a rough week like myself I pray this verse/printable gives you comfort as it did to me. 
This printable is 5x7. You can save it to your desktop and print.
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October 9, 2013

How I Get My Kids To Clean

    Usually kids don't like to clean am I right? I mean you tell your son/daughter to go clean his/her room and you get the "stink face" from them. Well I came up with a way to motivate my kids to clean... ok it's really more for me than for them. So what is this magical thing that gets my kids and I cleaning? 

CLEANING PARTIES! 
What is a cleaning party you ask? It's basically putting music on, dancing a bit and cleaning. I'm pretty sure most of you like having music on while cleaning and you're thinking "what's the big deal? I clean with music on too!" TRUE but there's just something about the word PARTY that gets kids all excited. So at least once a week I will put Pandora on the TV, shout "CLEANING PARTY", the kids come running to the living room, we dance for a while and we get our cleaning on. Our favorite Pandora station at the moment is CAPITAL KINGS. We usually end up doing a little more dancing than cleaning but we have a good time. 

How do you get your kids to clean?

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October 4, 2013

A Few Things Friday

SARAH'S SURGERY
She did awesome! She's currently recovering and doing so good. Thank you to all those who were praying for her! She did cry a little after she woke up from surgery and didn't want to take her medicine but she's doing so well at home. 
BREAKING BAD
I started watching Breaking Bad about a month ago and I'm now on season 4. It's SO GOOD! I heard the finale was this past weekend I'm kind of anxious to see it yet not really cause I don't want it to end.

FREEBIES
I'm sorry I haven't done a freebie on my blog for a while now. I will try to have one for you all by the end of the month! I'd like to bring back Freebie Friday which only lasted about three months. lol 

SPONSORS
I would love to have your pretty little ad on my sidebar! I will be having a group giveaway at the end of the month so if you would like to participate you can purchase and ad spot here.  
Use Code: ITSFRIDAY for 25% off any ad spot!

GUEST POST
I guest posted on Tausha's blog Taush O. yesterday! Come say hello and enter to win ad spots on both my blog and hers!! :)

DESIGN
I haven't been advertising my design business as much because I seriously don't want to overwhelm myself with work right now so I've been working on and off with people who just e-mail me. (mostly returning customers.) Speraking of design I've been getting that itch again! You know the "I need to re-design my blog" itch. So you might see a couple changes on the blog soon...

THE FOX SAYS
Last but not least: Have you guys seen this youtube music video yet? If you haven't YOU NEED TO! My husband showed it to me this week and I LOVE it! It's funny and catchy!
Have a WONDERFUL WEEKEND!
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October 2, 2013

Purple Purses + Domestic Violence

This is a compensated campaign in collaboration with Latina Bloggers Connect and The Allstate Foundation.

Domestic Violence. 
It affects one in four women in their lifetime - that's more women than breast, ovarian and lung cancer combined! Chances are you know someone who is experiencing it right now and not even know it. The crazy thing is you may be experiencing domestic violence yourself and not even know it. How is that? Well when you think about domestic violence you generally think it's just about the "violence" but it's so much more than that! Have you ever heard of financial abuse? I hadn't! I actually looked it up and was surprised to find that it is way more common than I thought. Sadly financial abuse is very common in the Latino/Hispanic community. Many see it as a way of life and don't even question it. Lacking financial knowledge and resources is the number one indicator of whether a domestic violence victim will stay, leave or return to an abusive relationship. Many people live this way because they lack knowledge. They have no idea that there's such a thing as financial abuse and go on living their lives unhappy and unstable. Here are a couple examples of financial abusive behavior that I found online...
  • Giving you an allowance and closely watching what you buy.
  • Placing your paycheck in their account and denying you access to it.
  • Keeping you from seeing shared bank accounts or records.
  • Forbidding you to work or limiting the hours you do.
  • Preventing you from going to work by taking your car or keys.
  • Getting you fired by harassing you, your employer or coworkers on the job.
  • Using your social security number to obtain credit without your permission.
  • Using your child’s social security number to claim an income tax refund without your permission.
  • Maxing out your credit cards without your permission.
  • Refusing to give you money, food, rent, medicine or clothing.
  • Using funds from your children’s tuition or a joint savings account without your knowledge.
  • Spending money on themselves but not allowing you to do the same.

  • You see domestic violence goes way beyond just violence! It is an issue that impact millions yet very few talk about it. A majority of Americans agree that domestic violence is tough to talk about and more than one-third of Americans have NEVER even discussed the issue with family or friends. That is where The Purple Purse Foundation comes in as an aid to get people talking and spread the word about domestic violence and financial abuse by placing the power directly into people's hands with a purple purse. Not only does the Purple Purse Foundation help spread the word but for every purple purse passed through the end of October, The Allstate Foundation will donate $5 for every purse "passed" to YWCA (up to $350,000) for programs aimed to help domestic violence survivors and to ultimately stop the cycle of abuse.

    If you are a victim of domestic abuse or know someone who is seek some help please! You can visit the Purple Purse website or Facebook for tools and more infomation. You can also make a difference by going to www.purplepurse.com and enter the code below. Taking action against domestic violence is simple - PURPLE PURSE: PASS IT ON.
    I will be receiving an actual purple purse soon which I will be passing on to someone else which I will be sharing photos of on instagram, twitter and facebook. I am honored and thankful to do my small part in helping those going through domestic abuse.

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