Rain over the next hill!
In a slight change of pace from my usual things, this week, I have a theme!
As mentioned previously, I have been listening to books during my commute instead of the radio, but there are a handful of songs that I will listen to every time they come on the radio. Today’s three are my top three.
1. Fun. Carry On
This song makes me so happy! It’s a song of perseverance and hope.
We are shining stars
We are invincible
We are who we are
On our darkest day
When we’re miles away
Sun will come
We will find our way home.
It’s fun to sing to and so happy. Really, there are several songs by Fun. that make me listen, but this is, by far, my favorite!
2. American Authors Best Day Of My Life
This one is guaranteed to make me stop, listen and sing at the top of my lungs. It’s been out for a while, but my love for this song hasn’t waned a bit!
But all the possibilities
No limits just epiphanies
I’m never gonna look back
Whoa, I’m never gonna give it up
3. On Top Of The World
I can’t tell you how much I love this song. It’s the newest on the radio off of my list, but it makes me want to sing, even though I barely know any of the words! Actually, Imagine Dragons make me happy. I love their music, but the positivity that flows out of this song makes all my stresses melt away.
And I know it’s hard when you’re falling down
And it’s a long way up when you hit the ground
Get up now, get up, get up now.
‘Cause I’m on top of the world…
Been dreaming of this since a child
I’m on top of the world.
Did you notice the theme? The positivity and happiness radiating out of these songs speaks to my soul and makes me smile, even on the most stressful of days. I could also list several songs off the Pitch Perfect soundtrack, but then it would be way more than three things!
What songs make you turn up the radio and sing?
*The links in this post are affiliate links, which mean I receive compensation from purchases, but your price is not affected. Thank you for your support!
I missed last Thursday, so, evidently, Three Things Thursday is not yet a thing. I’ll get there, though. I hope!
1. Starting a business, starting a blog, running a home all while being busier than ever at your real job is very hard. Rewarding, but hard. I’m so tired. And I really hope nothing’s falling through the cracks. Oh yeah, something is…working out. It’s too hot for that anyways?
2. I love to read and go through spurts where I devour book after book relentlessly until I burn out. Then I don’t read for weeks until something piques my interest. I’m craving books right now, but cannot squeeze another minute out of my day. I do, however, sit in my car at least two hours a day which leaves prime time for listening. I can only take so much radio and songs played endlessly. For a while I was listening to Dave Ramsey on iHeartRadio and Jillian Michaels’ podcast on iTunes. Still love them both, but I needed a break. I started listening to Dave Ramsey’s daughter’s book, Smart Money, Smart Kids. I got it free for pre-ordering the hard back. Loved it. Loved listening to it. Then I took a free trial of Audible to listen to The One & Only by Emily Griffin. Now I’m “reading” Nora Roberts’ The Collector. It’s not quite as good as reading the words, but it’s satisfying my need to keep my mind going all. the. time. My main complaint, though, is the expense! I was downloading books from my library through Overdrive last summer and was able to read all summer for free. Audible is $14.95 plus tax for 1 book a month. After I’m finished with this one I have until July before I can get another! I don’t even know what I’m going to do with myself! (Side note, follow me on Goodreads. I’m trying really hard to keep it updated better than I have been.)
3. We’re getting into Texas summer, which means beautifully long, productive days, sunshine, bright blue skies with big fluffy clouds, and heat. I love three of the things listed. Can you guess which ones they are? (My Jeep declared the temperature as 101 when I got in it to leave the real job yesterday afternoon. It wasn’t, I guess my Jeep is preparing me for the days ahead. Bring it, I guess….)
I’ve recently been introduced to the new world of subscription boxes. For the longest time, I looked from afar, but really didn’t see the benefit. I don’t spend the money on these items now, so I wouldn’t be saving any money by subscribing. But, after reading reviews of StitchFix from Meals and Miles and KERF, I finally decided to make the plunge and order a box. For those who haven’t heard of StitchFix, let me fill you in. You pay $25.00 and fill out a questionnaire about your style. A stylist then selects five items for you and sends them your way. You can then choose to purchase items (one or two pieces or all of them). If you don’t like them, you send them back. The pieces I’ve seen are really more expensive than I like to spend, but my wardrobe needs some serious help, so I decided to try it. My first box will arrive in late July, after all of our summer trips are done and all I have left is work. I’m excited to see what they’ve selected.
I then saw that Birchbox was running a special: $5.00 for May’s box. That was half off! Thanks to Maskcara and How Sweet Eats, I have a new obsession with beauty items and makeup, so I thought I’d try this one, too! In this box, you receive 5 samples of new products and makeup after filling out a short questionnaire about your style and interests. I received my box yesterday and couldn’t wait to dig in. At first, I was seriously underwhelmed. I knew this was going to be samples, but I really thought they would be bigger than the samples I get with every Ulta purchase. And, again, to purchase the full-size of the products is probably more than I will ever want to spend, but it was worth a try! But the more I looked and studied the products, the more excited I got. There is some pretty cool stuff in that one little box!
This morning I did use the spray, the eyeliner and the perfume. I won’t be reviewing until the samples are gone, to make sure I give them a fair shot. I will, however, say that I LOVE the perfume. I want the full-size, something I haven’t said about a perfume in years. The smell makes me so happy!
I will keep this subscription on a month to month basis. If there’s a month where my budget just can’t handle the $10, I’ll cancel, but who doesn’t love getting a gift in the mail every month!
Both programs, like most, have a referral program, and all links in this post are referral links. There’s also a link on the side bar for both StitchFix and Birchbox, as well as my favorite online shopping tool, Ebates. Don’t know about that one? I’ll have to tell you about it someday! The more referrals you get, the more points you get towards purchases, which may one day result in me actually buying something from these!
*Tell me all about your favorite subscription services. Food? Clothes? Pet Products? I’m all ears!
So I’m three weeks in and I have nothing to say. That bodes really well for the success of the blog, doesn’t it? Since I have nothing to say, I guess I can just ramble. Get ready!
1. This spring has been really mild and rainy. I love it. So does my garden! I’ve harvested pounds of radishes and sugar snap peas, but I think that’s coming to an end. No worries, though, that just leaves room for the tomato, squash, and zucchini and cucumber plants to take over!
I’ve got beans climbing a trellis and cucumbers that are expanding quickly. My onions are blockbuster sizes and this year I’m trying corn. I have 4 whole stalks. Hoping for enough to feed my family one meal. I also have 4 okra plants and three pepper plants. Neither of those has ever done much for me in years past, but I have a feeling that this year will be different. I’ll let you know!
2. I think I’m sending 5 chicks to their new homes this week, and for that, I’m thankful! I’ve loved watching them grow, but 40 chicks grow really fast. They also love to eat. 50 lbs of chicken feed in 6 days. They’re 11 weeks old. It’s time for them to go out and get a job. For. Real!
3. We have three dogs. 10-year-old boxer-pit mix: Lou, 3-year-old black and tan coonhound mix: Memphis, 1-year-old corgi mini-aussie mix: Bear. I love them all. They are family. Family that chews everything. Bear starts it. Memphis and Lou join in, then point the finger at Bear when Mr. R starts asking who chewed up xyz. Memphis went through a brief chewing phase, but figured out very quickly that we didn’t like that. She quit. Bear doesn’t care. He’s so stinking cute, there’s no way I can stay mad at him. We’ve been through no less than 5 dog beds in 5 months. Right now the two we have look horrible and are missing half their stuffing. I refuse to spend the money to replace them, but will have no choice soon. Any suggestions? Keep in mind, we can’t ever catch them in the act.
Well, all of three things. I’m going to call this Three Things Thursday. It’s totally a thing!
See you on the flip side!
About 2-3 years ago I found KERF. That lead me to a whole new world of healthy eating blogs. My most recent find was 100 Days of Real Food which led me to Food Babe. Vani Hari is so thorough in her research, she often comes across as preachy, but is an outstanding source of information.
Through all these ladies, I’ve finally come to the realization that the foods you eat can heal you or harm you.
Like Kevil in Garbage In Garbage Out, I searched to find the final blog, study, or book would convince me that the bad stuff could, and would, do more harm than good. I think I’m almost there.
About a month ago, I went a week without grains and sugar. I cut out coffee in the morning and replaced with unsweeted hot tea. I felt great. So great that I decided a few weeks later to minimize my grain consumption. In the two weeks, I’ve lost 7 pounds and feel so much more energetic and focused. I haven’t included my family, but I am slowly cutting back on the grains I buy. To say they aren’t on board is an understatement. Of course, they haven’t spent the years I have soaking in the information that today’s food sources are contaminated and dangerous. I know it will take time, and they may never be 100% on board, but as long as I’m the one buying the groceries, I’m the one in charge!
I’ve not really lived my life up to the recent past with intention. I’ve been very blessed to stumble my way into a very comfortable position. I did realize last year, however, that this lifestyle was not the best, and definitely wouldn’t lead my daughter to an intentional lifestyle.
Failure to plan is planning for failure.
So I’ve taken steps this year to begin living my life with intention. I do want to create a better life for my family and myself. The only way to spring us forward is to plan.
I found Dave Ramsey last year and was drawn to his methods and teaching. My favorite part is his instruction to give every dollar a name; to spend it on purpose, on paper, before the month begins. For the last year I’ve been doing that. I may sometimes be a little off in my planning, but I definitely have a much better sense of how I’m spending my money. And he’s so right, I feel like I’ve gotten a raise since I know what I’ve got and what I can spend. I no longer feel guilty about purchasing a pair of shoes or new makeup, because I planned for it ahead of time and know my bills will be taken care of. I’m being more proactive about spending, instead of being reactionary.
I also found this beautiful Day Designer on Etsy. I can directly attribute the idea for my design business to the forms at the beginning. They forced me to examine aspects of myself and my dreams that opened my mind to the possibilities of developing and running my own business. Each day has so many opportunities for me to double check the direction my day is taking to make sure I’m working towards my larger goals. This planner is the epitome of intentional living and I’m in love with it.
For more than a year now I’ve used Deliciously Organic’s meal plans to plan my dinners. Then, I found the Gracious Pantry’s meal planning forms to help me with the rest of my meals. Because of these two tools, I’m able to plan breakfast, lunches, dinners and snacks that are healthy, balanced and use the foods I have on hand. Not only have a I been saving money at the grocery store, I’ve also been wasting less food, eating out less and losing weight.
This may all seem like a great deal of work, but it allows for a less cluttered mind and a life that, I feel, is moving forward. I’m setting an example for my daughter, hopefully, a good one!
We love to travel. We travel often. My favorite feeling is the excitement of landing in a new place. I take weeks to scour the internet, looking for things to do in our planned destination.
Our last big trip was to California to drive along the coast from San Diego to San Francisco. My weeks of planning led to this:
In the space below I had specifics about hotels, addresses, pricing and confirmation numbers. I saved this file in Dropbox so I could access it at any time along the way. We also had a printout in our file folder that holds boarding passes, email confirmations and car rental information.
The work done ahead of time ensured that this trip was, by far, the best family vacation we’ve ever taken. And, of course, the amazing scenery didn’t hurt either!
These are only the pictures that I posted on instagram. I have thousands to edit from my DSLR and my phone, not to mention what the rest of the family got. In the future I’ll tell you all about it, but for now, I hope you enjoyed the preview!