The Many Joys and Frustrations of Homemaking

Nothing is perfect this side of Heaven.  That’s why we have dust and cobwebs, back aches, lost library books, and challenging parenting issues.  It can all draw us closer to God (true perfection!) and help us recognize our need for His strength.  We also know that even with all the crazy and frustrating aspects of life, there is also a lot of joy.  Hey, if we can’t laugh at our spilled buttermilk

Yeah, real funny.

As we focus this week on remembering that Homemaking is Fun, I want to encourage you with some posts from the archives.

Let’s begin with a few lessons I’ve learned about dealing with some of those less than ideal situations:

~ My best lesson from Grandma…Every Good Cook Burns Herself Sometimes

~ Best (ha!) sleep-over breakfast ever…The Day I Forgot To Sift the Popcorn Out of the Waffle Mix

~ Ugh, picky children!…I Can Now Accommodate Picky Muffin Eaters and Mix and Match Oatmeal Bars

Now let’s talk to all of you who don’t love to cook:

~ This one speaks for itself…So, You Don’t Like to Cook?

~ Donuts, again?…Start the Day With a Healthy Breakfast

~ My favorite “I don’t feel like cooking” breakfast…Instant Oatmeal in a Jar

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And we’ll wrap it up by talking about ways to save money:

~ Freezer meals rock…Loads of Make-Ahead-Meal posts

~ This is a HOT deal right now!…Grab Your Free $10 For Whole Food Groceries

~ Our favorite whole food meals that cost about $1 per plate…Dollar Menu Recipes

Friday is the big day!  Make plans to join us tomorrow here on the blog for new giveaways going up all day long.  Then, tomorrow night from 7:00 to 8:30 CST, we’ll be having our first ever Facebook Party!  Find the Heavenly Homemakers Facebook Page here.  More giveaways, more fun – you’ve gotta join us!  After all this, you’ll definitely be convinced that Homemaking is Fun!

Homemaking is Fun Facebook Invitation

Preparing For a Great Summer With Your Family

During all the seasons of the year…homemaking is fun.  I love hot chocolate, snow, snuggling up by the fire, and all the fun foods that come with wintertime.  But I’m ready for a break from all of that because I LOVE sunshine!!!!!

Summertime is my very favorite.  I love the time off from schooling, the fun projects, the camps, the garden, the family reunions, the swimming, the cook-outs…and the sunshine!!  (Someone certainly likes her Vitamin D, doesn’t she?)

Preparing For a Great Summer With Your Family

Our family is wrapping up our school year – as in, we’re down to just a few remaining unfinished subjects, and I’m starting to have boys wander around the house looking for something to do to fill the time.  I love this time of year (because the sun is shining!) as we find ourselves with extra time to do the fun projects we’ve not had time to do with a full school schedule.

It is so much fun to see our boys being creative in their downtime.  I’m seeing fun Lego projects appear and new videos created.  I’m hearing new songs on the piano, our synthesizer, and our music software.  I’m seeing games being played that haven’t been pulled off the shelves in months.  I’m watching activity outside, loving that the boys can finally run around in the yard again (and mess up the grass that is trying to grow).

monopoly

I’m also already starting to hear the words, “Mom, I don’t have anything to do.”  Yep, the dreaded sentence.

I never like to follow that sentence up with, “Well, you can go fold laundry” because somehow I feel that my children would then forever and always run far from me when they’re looking for something to do, thus resulting in much wasted time in the long run.  My goal is to come up with ideas for fun projects and activities that will keep them busy and productive.  The laundry?  Oh yes, they can definitely fold that in their spare time – you know, after they’ve cleaned out the dishwasher and gone outside to bury the compost.  ;)

Our boys are ages 9-16 right now, so gone are the days of blowing bubbles and splashing around in a kiddie pool.  Your list of ways to keep your kids busy might differ from mine, based on the ages and interests of your kids.  But here are a few ideas I have for my kids to keep them busy during the next few months:

  • Play card and board games
  • Create more music and videos
  • Play games outside
  • Learn more card tricks
  • Learn more cooking/kitchen skills
  • Get together with friends and cousins
  • Help Dad with home improvement projects
  • Read books (maybe offer a summer reading challenge?)
  • Clean out bedroom, boxing up toys they no longer play with
  • Work through a science experiment book
  • Clean out the basement (who knows what treasures will be discovered!)
  • Learn to make homemade ice cream
  • Swim often and improve water skills (while getting Vitamin D – woot!)

I’d love to hear what ideas you have for making it a great summer with your family.  What do your kids like to do, or what would you like them to learn this summer?

As I’m looking through all the books in the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle being offered this week, I found at least 16 books that are great resources for filling a kid’s summer with productive fun and learning.  Many of the ideas are for younger kids – and wow are there a lot of good ideas!  But there’s also a great eBook to teach your kids to sew – what a wonderful summer activity!  (Sewing School 101: Simple Tips to Get You Stitching)

I also think summer is a great time to focus on specific godly character training.  There is an entire section in the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle filled with resources to guide you and your kids along with this.


What else?  Share your great ideas for keeping your kids active and productive this summer!

And be sure to check out the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle as a fantastic resource.  (Only 5 more days!)

Now THIS is Fun ~ $900 Worth of Homemaking Resources For Less Than $30!

Homemaking IS Fun.  This incredible package will prove it.  After all, one of the most fun aspects of homemaking is finding good deals to help you run your household.  Almost $900 worth of eBooks and products for less than $30?  I’d say that’s a good deal.  Fun, fun, fun, fun, fun!

What kind of fun are we talking about here?

  • Free fabric
  • Free home remedies
  • Free laundry detergent
  • Free greeting cards
  • Free eye shadow
  • Are we having fun yet?!
  • 78 eBooks
  • 2 Audio files
  • 2 eCourses
  • 2 Printable Packets
  • More freebies and bonuses
  • I told you this was fun…  :)

The bundle being offered during the next 6 days is a one-of-a-kind, never been offered, never to be offered again set.  I’ve been devouring this package since I received it.  It offers so much!  In addition to ordering many of my freebies, I’ve had a blast playing in the kitchen with new, whole food recipes I’ve found in the eBooks.

New Recipes!

My family loves it when we play with new recipes, so yes, they are loving this bundle, too – and we’ve only just begun.  :)  There are books on faith (for my kids and for me), budgeting, health and wellness, self-care, marriage, and many other aspects of homemaking!

So let’s see…you’ll get all these books:

See the full list of 80+ eBooks, audio files, eCourses & printable packs included in the sale.

Plus you’ll get $200 worth of bonuses:

bonus-images

As well as five more incredible offers from:

These deals are worth over six times the price of the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle. So you’re up on the deal right away!  Learn more about the bonus offers.

And you get all this for how much?  Just $29.97.  Want all of these books on Kindle instead of PDF?  No problem.  For just $10 more, you can buy the Kindle package.

Here’s what you need to know about the sale:

When? 8 a.m. EST Wednesday, April 23 until 11:59 p.m. EST Monday, April 28

What? 78 eBooks, 2 eCourses, 2 audio files, and 2 printable packs PLUS over $200 worth of bonus products you’ll really use!

Where? Purchase the bundle here.

How much? That, my fellow homemakers, is the best part. The entire package is worth nearly $900, and it’s selling for $29.97 for PDF or $39.97 for Kindle. Let’s all say it together, “Homemaking is Fun!”

You’ll love how easy this is.  All the files come in a nice, tidy compressed folder – all organized into specific categories.  That way, you can access them at your leisure, without feeling like you have to go through them all at once!  Here’s what the files look like on my computer:

bundle file

Each time I want to look up a recipe or find information, I simply head to that folder and open it up.  It’s so easy!

Want to learn more? Read about what this amazing bundle offers — or just buy it now!

Remember, this bundle is available for 6 days only, from 8 a.m. (EST) on Wednesday, April 23 to 11:59 p.m. (EST) on Monday, April 28th.

Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.

Homemaking is Fun – Join the Party This Week!

Puke splattered from the top bunk, pre-chewed gum in the baby’s mouth that she found on a grocery store floor, broken glass, poopy diaper blow-outs, toothpaste crusted onto the sink, cobwebs on the ceiling fan (discovered after company arrives), moldy leftovers, crayon drawings on the wall.

There.  I figured I’d make a list of the parts of homemaking that none of us particularly enjoy – just to get that out of the way.  Now let’s talk about all the fun parts of homemaking that are rockin’ awesome:

  • Great tasting food
  • Decorating
  • Clean living rooms
  • Sweet children and spouses
  • Family nights
  • Lush gardens
  • Organized days
  • Shoes that have made it to the closet (oh happy day)

We’re all going to have those “my car keys just got flushed down the toilet days.”  So be it.  Do we actually think we’ll ever arrive at homemaking perfection?  It’s not gonna happen.  But we’ll all continue to work hard, and think about it:  Homemaking is fun.  The creative ideas, the never-ending recipes, the parties, the family nights, the new favorite colors, the pretty dishes – there are aspects of homemaking that we can have fun with!

I don’t care if you’re a stay at home mom, work inside or outside the home mom, not a mom, an empty nester, married, unmarried, hate to cook, love to cook, have a green thumb, don’t know primary colors from tertiary colors…

We are all homemakers.

This is what makes homemaking fun.  We can live it up in our kitchens if we like to.  We can decorate cakes, living rooms, kid’s rooms, or greeting cards.  We can dig into the soil, plant pretty flowers, or grow our own tomatoes.  We can teach our kids at home, or be the best home-room mom the school has ever seen.  We can make awesome treats, craft beautiful gifts, find amazing bargains, clean out clutter, or repurpose a grocery sack to become the best costume our kids have ever seen.

The joy of homemaking is that it can look different for everyone - based on our gifts, what we love, what we don’t love, and what is important to us.

This week, we’re celebrating the fun of homemaking.  You have to join us!

Homemaking Is Fun Invitation 3

You won’t believe the line-up of fun homemaking giveaways we have for our party.  You’ll have a chance to win awesome products from:

Friday will be our big giveaway day – so you’ll want to check in frequently as I post giveaway after giveaway.  You have a chance to win food packages, non-toxic soaps, stainless steel bakeware – and the list goes on.  I’m telling you, Homemaking is Fun!!

My favorite part of the week: The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle being offered, for 6 days only.  It’s almost $900 worth of products and eBooks, eCourses, and Printables – for less than $30.  I love this line-up of items you can get that will help you rock this homemaking thing – and help you love it too.  I love so much about this bundle!

instant library

There’s more!  To go along with this, mark your calendar.  For the first time ever, we’ll be having a Homemaking is Fun Facebook Party!  Make plans to hang around on our Heavenly Homemakers Facebook Page on Friday, April 25 from 7:00-8:30 CST.  We’ll be giving away tons of wonderful homemaking prizes, and enjoy lively conversation about different aspects of homemaking.

We are homemakers.  Hear us roar.  Let the party begin!

Get us started – Everyone leave a comment sharing your favorite part of homemaking…  :)

1/2 Gallon Organic Maple Syrup As Low As $31.62, Plus a $5 Coupon for Brown Rice

I was super excited to find that we can get a 1/2 gallon (64 ounces) of Hidden Springs Maple Organic Vermont Maple Syrup for as low as $31.62 if you have Amazon Prime/Mom and purchase at least 4 other items with subscribe and save within a month’s time.  (Read more here about how subscribe and save works so well for me!)  Be sure to click over to the Grade B Organic option to see this price.

hidden springs maple syrup

Also, I found a great deal on 4 – 32 ounce containers of Texamati Brown Rice.  With Amazon Prime/Mom and 4 other subscribe and save items, and the $5.00 coupon they are offering, you can get this case of rice for just $15.22!

texmati rice

Want to see more great Amazon Deals?  Check out our Amazon Deals Page which I update frequently as I find awesome prices on healthy, whole food ingredients!

This post contains affiliate links.

Gratituesday: “Mom, Do You Know How Long I’ve Been Waiting For This?”

gratituesday[2]

You know how much I love butter?  That is how much Malachi, our nine year old, loves Legos.  The kid plays with them for hours every day, won a $10,000 scholarship because of his Lego dreams, and has ideas for making Legos a part of his career/business once he’s a grown-up.

You can imagine, then, how much Malachi has been wanting to visit LEGOLAND.  We’ve not been able to make it all the way to California to visit the Legoland, but we did provide Malachi with a fun trip over the weekend to the Legoland Discover Center in Kansas City.  We were headed that way anyway for our church youth leadership (LTC), so we left a day early to make this happen for Malachi.

We arrived and found a spot in the parking garage with one very excited little boy.  I wish you could have seen his joy.  As we made our way up the stairs out of the parking garage, there in front of Malachi was the Legoland building.  He paused, took a deep breath, and said, “Mom, do you know how long I’ve been waiting for this?”  Oh yes, Son.  I know.  :)

For the next four hours, Malachi and Daddy took it all in.  They rode the ride, looked at all the exhibits, watched the 4-D movie, visited Lego Academy to learn more about building – basically experienced the most Lego fun ever, according to the nine year old.  Tired as he was that night, he couldn’t wind down to go to sleep until after midnight.

In an effort to save money and have more age appropriate fun, the older boys and I went to Union Station and walked the shopping mall during that time.  Once we all met back up, it was so much fun to see pictures and hear Matt and Malachi telling all about their day.  Here are a few highlights:

legoland4

legoland3

It is amazing all that can be built out of Legos!

legoland 1

Oh yes, Star Wars.

legoland2

Malachi was hesitant to climb on top of the giraffe, but Matt assured him it was okay and threw him up there for some exploration.

legoland5

This next one might be my personal favorite.  My son, the owl, with the owl he just built in the Lego Academy:

legoland6

Praise God for fun opportunities and the joy that comes with them.  What a fun memory for Malachi and Matt to share!

Now your turn.  Share what you’re thankful for!  Leave a comment on this post letting us know how God is working in your life.  If you’ve written a blog post about what you’re thankful for, leave the link in the comments so we can visit your blog to read about it.  We love sharing and reading about God’s blessings!

A Reminder: Free Shipping at Tropical Traditions Today

Since this was shared over a very busy Easter weekend, I wanted to quickly remind you that Tropical Traditions is offering free shipping today.  Don’t miss it!

This is a great time to grab a bucket of Palm Shortening for baking and frying the healthy way.

palm_shortening

New customers who purchase through the links in this post will receive a free copy of Virgin Coconut Oil Book in their order – a great book!

Use the code 34312 at checkout for free shipping.

This post contains affiliate links.

Praying for Gladis

One Child Matters recently sent us a simple prayer card to fill out for our sponsored child, Gladis.  I loved this idea and wanted to share!

We simply attached our family picture to one side of the card…

praying for gladis 1

Then we wrote out our prayer for her on the other side…

praying for gladis 2

This prayer will be translated and sent on to Gladis in Honduras.  Praying for our little girl is better than any other gift we can send her.  We are so blessed to be a part of this!

If you’re not yet sponsoring a child, please join us in this ministry.  God is using all of us to change the lives of children and their families.  We are so honored to be a part of this!

Menu Plan for the Week ~ Happy Easter!

I hope you are having a wonderful day celebrating the resurrection of our Savior!

We are keeping our plans very simple today, focusing on worship and rest.  After a weekend of travel, we wanted a nutrient filled (but easy to make) lunch.  Therefore, we put together Easy Taco Salads and ate outside in the sunshine.  Awesome!

Easy Taco Salad with homemade French Dressing

I’m excited to use several of the freezer foods I’ve been making the past few weeks.  Catch up with all the Freezer Cooking Challenge posts here.  My freezer is full, and I’m loving it!

Here’s our menu this week:

Sunday, April 20
Instant oatmeal packets with dried fruit
Easy taco salad, sweet peppers
Small group potluck – I’m making Black bean salsa with chips, a bowl of grapes, and a veggie tray

Monday, April 21
Whole wheat waffles, fresh blueberries, whipped cream
Tuna salad on lettuce and tomatoes, sweet peppers, peaches and cottage cheese
Cheesy Beef and Pasta Casserole (recipe in {Healthy} Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook)

Tuesday, April 22
Strawberry cream muffins, scrambled eggs, bananas
Spicy avocado dip with chips, fresh pineapple, carrot sticks
Bacon wrapped cream cheese chicken (recipe in  {Healthy} Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook), tossed salad, green beans, creamy orange cooler

Wednesday, April 23
Dark chocolate almond granola, kiwi
Popcorn chicken, ranch potato wedges, peas, sweet peppers
Calico beans, tossed salad, cantaloupe

Thursday, April 24
Poppy Seed Bread with Orange Glaze (recipe in {Healthy} Make-Ahead Meals and Snacks eBook), fried eggs, apple slices
Easy cheesy bean dip with chips, pineapple, cucumbers and carrots with ranch
Baked three cheese chicken pasta, tossed salad, steamed broccoli and carrots

Friday, April 25
Easy breakfast casserole, clementines
Lamb burger patties, sweet potato fries, creamy coleslaw, strawberries
Grilled barbeque chicken, baked potatoes, tossed salad, roasted asparagus

Saturday, April 26
Scrambled cheesy eggs, fruit and kefir smoothies
Leftovers
Italian pasta bake, tossed salad, corn, green beans

Just a reminder to grab your free $10 to spend on whole food groceries.  I’m so thankful for resources like this to help us feed our families well while sticking to the budget!

I’d love to hear what you’ve been up to this Easter.  :)  Also – be watching for some very fun posts and giveaways coming up this week.  We’re throwing a party!  You’ll receive the official invite in a couple days.  Join us for some spring-time fun!

Look what’s coming and will be a part of our party!!

Palm Shortening, Honey, a Free Coconut Oil Book, and Free Shipping – Yes!

It’s a free shipping weekend at Tropical Traditions with a minimum $12.99 order.  Love this!

palm_shortening

Trying to get away from using Crisco?  Awesome.  :)  You can get my very favorite Palm Shortening for just $0.24 per ounce.   Great price for a great product.  I use palm shortening in Super Creamy Peanut Butter, Whole Wheat Pie Crust, and Whole Wheat Quick Mix.  I also use it to fry chicken and French fries.  Palm shortening is a staple healthy fat at our house along with coconut oil and butter.

Whole Wheat Pie Crust

You can also get a 17.6 ounce Organic Raw Honey for $10.49.

Use the code 34312 at checkout for free shipping.

Plus, if you are a new customer with Tropical Traditions, you’ll receive a free copy of their Virgin Coconut Oil Book!   This book is loaded with wonderful information and recipes!  Please also be aware that I receive Tropical Traditions credit if you are a new customer purchasing through my links.  See my full disclosure policy here.