Thankful Thursday: My Hubs

Thankful Thursday: My Hubs

This Thankful Thursday, I’m thankful for my husband, Joseph.  Not that I’m not thankful for him daily, but a specific series of events has really made me super thankful today.

You see, last night, I had a completely random, out of the blue, unexpected bout of “middle of the night sickness”.  What the heck, second trimester?  You’ve promised me I wouldn’t be as… sicky.  You lied.  Pregnancy is strange.  I came back to bed and Joseph went and got me a glass of water and my Seabands (which were a TOTAL lifesaver during first trimester “evening sickness”).  Then this morning, since he had a work meeting and didn’t have to leave as early as usual, he woke up with Junebug and let me get an extra half hour of sleep.

He is a rock star.

Thanks Love!

xoxo Megan

Toddler Tuesday: Planting Flowers

Toddler Tuesday: Planting Flowers

Hi friends, we’ve got a sunny little Toddler Tuesday today!  This morning Junebug and I camped out on our warm, sunny front porch and planted a pot of flowers.  I hope to plant some more flowers before summer rolls around, I just have to figure out what’s growing in our new yard currently so I know if I need to add to the flower beds or if they’ll be full.  There’s definitely a lot of stuff coming up, I just don’t know what it is!  We’ll for sure have to get some more pots and do some plants on our stairs in the front!

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We haven’t unpacked our gardening stuff yet, so we improvised and used a Tupperware scoop to fill the pot instead of a shovel.  I think that worked out nicely for Junebug, as it had higher sides so she was less likely to spill the dirt.  She enjoyed scooping and dumping and by the end she was getting some pretty decent scoops!

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We planted Zinnias, which I don’t think I’ve ever grown before, so I’m excited to see how they turn out!  Junebug had a hard time pouring the water, so I helped.  I’ve been trying to find a small watering can so she can do it on her own, but I cant seem to find any stores that carry them.  (Anyone know where I can find a little mini watering can?)  Now that I think of it, she might have one in her sand box.  I’ll have to check out there this afternoon.  😛

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We had hoped to put the pot on the table in front of our big front window so Junebug could watch the flowers from inside her playroom, but it’s super shady there, so we have them sitting around the corner.  We’ll be reading books and coloring out in that corner now that the weather is nicer, so she’ll still get to see them.

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We’re planning on asking our landlord if we can build a small garden in the backyard cause it’s super sunny, so hopefully more planting happens soon!  I’m sure Junebug will love getting in there and helping us out!

xoxo Megan

Make It Monday: Izzy Top

Make It Monday: Izzy Top

Today’s Make It Monday features the beautiful Izzy Top!  This top is the only pattern I’ve adventured with so far with making clothes for our lovely Junebug.  It’s simple, but so cute!!!  I’ve got more patterns printed, and I have a dress pattern cut out, but haven’t started it yet.

I’ve made a couple of these tops for Junebug already and I’m so in love with how adorable they are on her.  She loves helping me choose the fabric to use and gets the biggest kick out of putting it on for the first time!  When I put the top on her today, she said she looked like a “cess”, which is her version of princess.  ❤  How can a momma not just absolutely fall in love with making clothes for her kiddo when she says she looks like a princess!?!

I got the pattern and followed the tutorial for the Izzy top from the blog, Climbing the Willow, here: http://www.climbingthewillow.com/2013/10/izzy-top-free-pattern-and-tutorial.html

She has a wonderfully detailed tutorial with photos that you can follow to make the Izzy Top!

Here are the Izzy Tops I’ve already made for Junebug.  The heart one I made for her Valentine’s day party for Storytime at the library.  The yellow floral one was the first one I made, upcycled out of a vintage pillow case!

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Junebug wore the heart top for our pregnancy announcement as well 🙂

Without any further ado, here are the pictures of the finished Izzy Top that I sewed up today (during Junebug’s naptime)

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 (Front on left, back on right- features a snap closure on the bodice)

Here are the photos of Junebug putting the new top on for the first time.

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All of the Izzy Tops that I’ve made have been 2T.  The pattern ranges from 18 months- 6.  It fits pretty true to size 🙂  Somehow I got a weird tuck in the back that I’ll probably try to go back and fix so it lays correctly.  Junebug woke up just as I was trimming off all the extra threads and putting on the snap, so I wasn’t able to take the seam ripper to it.

I’m thinking the next time I make an Izzy Top, I may experiment and try to make it a bit longer, into a dress.  We want to keep Junebug’s summer wardrobe modest, even at almost 2, we’re trying not to dress her in dresses and tops with thin straps, especially for when we go to Mass.  I struggle to find summery dresses that don’t have thin straps on them, and I love the bodice of this top so much that it’s worth a shot to see if it’ll work for a dress!

Spiritual Sunday: Prayer Sticks and Theology of the Body

Spiritual Sunday: Prayer Sticks and Theology of the Body

Part 1: Prayer Sticks

I’ve been loving the joy that praying for others has been bringing to our lives lately, especially little Junebug.  I sat with her yesterday while dinner was in the oven and we went through family and friends and prayed for each one individually for intentions that we knew they needed prayers for or prayed for intentions that we thought of.  She got the greatest kick out of me suggesting new people to pray for and she would decide if she wanted to pray for that person next or if she wanted me to make a new suggestion.  She’s got her own bold little mind!  Her personal favorites to pray for are Boompa (my dad), Puppa (Joseph’s dad) and Uncle John (Joseph’s younger brother).  So cute!!!

I sometimes struggle to come up with new names or with remembering who we’ve already prayed for in our litany’s, so I decided to turn to an idea that I had found on Pinterest a while back.  Here’s the original post: http://www.lubirdbaby.com/2011/12/prayer-pail-update.html

The idea was a Prayer Pail, essentially a container full of prayer intentions to choose from.  The momma that I got the idea from wrote on jumbo craft sticks with colorful markers and put the sticks into a metal pail labeled “Prayer Pail” and decorated the handle with colored ribbons!  How cute!

I decided to do a spin off, and used what I assume to have been a glass candle holder (Goodwill find), washi tape, jumbo craft sticks and permanent marker.

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I spent some time writing down family members, friends and some prayer intentions that our family could pray for together.  My plan is to bring our prayer sticks out before mealtimes and to include an intention after our traditional meal prayer.

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(Yes, I did this with a glass of FAKE wine…  I miss real stuff :/ )

I did decorate the sticks in the colors that I was hoping to decorate Junebug and Pumpkin’s room once we get around to getting Junebug a toddler bed and putting the crib wall back up on the crib Junebug is currently using as a bed.  I’m hoping to keep these in their room and also use them for bedtime prayers!

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Here are some of our prayer intentions:

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Right now our prayer sticks are living up on our religious shelf, sitting next to our bowl of Rosaries…  You know you’re Catholic when you not only have Rosaries, but have enough to fill a bowl in case friends are over and you want to pray together 😉

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Part 2: Theology of the Body

Friday night I went with some friends to a young adult event put on by our diocese.  They brought in Christopher West, author and speaker on the topic of Theology of the Body.

What a blessing it was to be able to hear him speak!!!  I’ve only ever gotten through the first few pages of his “Theology of the Body for Beginners” book, because the book would get lost or another new book would spark my interest.  I can see it sitting on our bookshelf right now, and let me tell you, that is the book I’m going to be reading tonight!  If you’ve never heard of Theology of the Body before, it is Pope Saint John Paul II’s teachings regarding human sexuality and the true design for the human body as God created us.  I was so inspired to delve deeper into TOB and to discover more about the words that JPII spoke to us. Once I get further into TOB, maybe I’ll do another post, but I just wanted to share how much I loved hearing Christopher West speak.  I ended up purchasing another one of his books while I was there and I’m looking forward to getting into that book as well!

xoxo Megan

Thankful Thursday: Computer Cords and Butterfly Wings

Thankful Thursday: Computer Cords and Butterfly Wings

Hi friends!

Today is Thankful Thursday, one of my favorite post days!  I love the opportunity to share the positives in my life with others!

Today, I’m thankful for computer cords and butterfly wings.  It sounds silly, but I’ll tell you why.

Yesterday, while playing, Junebug bumped into the computer cord that was plugged into Hubby’s computer.  It died immediately.  Since moving, we have only been able to locate one cord for our laptops.  This cord was more or less the life source behind our Netflix watching abilities (we don’t have our tv set up, so this is the only way we watch shows unless we have the seasons on DVD) and *gasp* to Tiny Little Graces!  I’m sure I could post from my phone, but I don’t use my phone camera to take photos for the blog because the quality is much lower than our normal camera, and far lower than that of my nice camera.  Therefore, I wouldn’t be able to share photos with you until another cord surfaced or we broke down and used Hubby’s work laptop to order a new cord.  Thank God, Hubby was able to locate another cord last night!  Netflix and blog saved!  Way to go Hubs!

Now, for the butterfly wings.  As much as I love butterflies, I’m not talking about the real shebang here.  Butterfly wings are what I call our baby’s movements in the first few weeks that I can feel baby occupying my belly.  I’ve been feeling Pumpkin wiggling around a bit here and there, and for that, I am eternally grateful.  It’s truly reassuring to feel those tiny movements inside of me and be reminded of the life I have within me.  I’ve had several friends in the past couple weeks lose their precious babies and my wonderful sister and brother in law narrowly missed an adoption opportunity, so my mind hasn’t been in a very positive place and I’ve been a little worried about Pumpkin.

This week is Infertility Awareness week, and in light of these beautiful people and their losses, I find myself feeling slightly guilty for a healthy pregnancy, but overall, extremely grateful that Hubby and I have not had to experience this sadness first hand.

The past few days for me have been filled with heartbreak for my wonderful friends and family.  You are all in my thoughts and prayers, especially this week.  May God heal your hearts and bless you with a child in His time.

xoxo Megan

Wellness Wednesday: How I Menu Plan

Wellness Wednesday: How I Menu Plan

As promised, here is my menu planning process!

Now that I have my awesome Menu Planning Station set up, (https://tinygraces.wordpress.com/2015/04/11/frugal-friday-menu-planning-station/)  it’s SUPER easy to do my menu planning!

I grab my file organizer and a surface to write on.  I also grab my recipe source, which happened to be in my file organizer this week.

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This week all of my recipes were already decided on in my monthly planner, so I quickly jotted them down on my weekly menu planner notepad.  If they hadn’t have been there already, I would have grabbed a binder, cookbook or recipe box and searched through for 6-7 varying recipes.  I try not to do too many of one type of recipe in a week- ie, I try not to do tacos and fajitas in the same week.  This week, however, it seems I was craving Hispanic themed foods- Creamy Chicken Taco Soup, Black Bean Quinoa Enchilada Bake AND Chicken Fajita Stuffed Peppers.  I blame the baby.  😉

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I then grabbed my recipes out of my “Week 2 Menu” file folder and went to town writing down the ingredients I would need for this week’s recipes.  I make sure to keep in mind the ingredients that I have in stock in my pantry- like flour, sugar, spices, etc.  I also keep in mind if I bought an ingredient and didn’t use it in a previous menu, like if we ended up going out to dinner and not making one of the recipes that week.  I also sometimes buy in bulk if there is a sale.

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I then make sure to double check my fridge, freezer, and pantry to make sure I don’t have any of the ingredients on my list.  I put my recipes, menu/grocery list and any coupons I may have for that week into the file folder, ready to grab from on Friday before I make my big shopping trip.

I like having all my recipes in the same spot, too, so that I don’t have to search through all my recipe binders and my recipe box to find the recipe that is on the menu for that day.  After I use the recipe, I return it to the correct spot for the next time I’m menu planning.

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I’m hoping to get more into couponing, so that I can save more on our weekly budget.  I currently do a majority of our shopping at Aldi, so our grocery bill is already pretty low, but every dollar counts when you’re a single income household!

Until next time, friends!

xoxo Megan

Toddler Tuesday: Color Sorting with Ball Pit Balls

Toddler Tuesday: Color Sorting with Ball Pit Balls

Today’s activity comes from Pinterest, of course!  I adapted the idea from this momma here: http://minne-mama.blogspot.com/2014/02/color-toss-activity-with-video.html

Over the past couple nights I’ve worked after Junebug has gone to bed (because frankly, if I color with markers in her presence, we get a feisty little one 😛 )

To make our Color Sorting Board, I gathered some materials I had on hand and purchased a tri fold board from the dollar tree.  It’s amazing what you can get there for just a dollar!

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I used a pencil to trace a mid sized bowl six times in the middle section of the tri fold board.  I tried to space them evenly, but I was off a bit on the bottom two.

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Next I traced around the circles with colored markers.  It didn’t come out as well as I hoped- coloring on corrugated cardboard is not super fun, but it worked out.

I then wrote the name of each coordinating color along the side and used a knife to cut out the holes.  I advise doing this portion of the project over a safe surface and not your lap… not that I learned from experience 😉

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Hubby found 3 bags of ball pit balls on clearance after Christmas a couple years ago at Fleet Farm.  Junebug got a activity turtle that held ball pit balls, which was a big hit for both her, the little guy I used to babysit, and unfortunately, the dog.  Each bag had 100 ball pit balls.  I took out about half the balls from the bag and put them into a basket for Junebug to grab from.  The bag had pink balls in it, so I had to make sure to take those out since I didn’t make a color hole for pink.

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Last night, after I finished up the game, I left it in the living room set up so she would see it when we woke up in the morning.  She definitely took the invitation!  As I was letting Lux outside, I heard Junebug yelling “Woah!” and “Wow!” from the living room.  By the time I came into the living room, she had several balls scattered around the living room.  We played together and talked about the color of the balls and the holes.  We worked together to put the balls through the correct holes.  She definitely didn’t get them right every time, but she’s getting really good at saying the colors and most of the time is able to correctly identify the colors!

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Here’s Junebug exploring with our game after breakfast this morning 🙂

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She was so excited every time she got one in right!  I’d yell “YES!” and give her high fives and her smile would be a mile wide.  I have a feeling this game will be requested a lot.

In the initial post that I got the idea from, the momma had her kiddo paint paper and she cut those out to be the colored circles around the holes.  I may possibly spruce it up with some better looking circles.  Junebug loves to paint, so I’m sure she would enjoy helping me with that!  The original post also used beanbags, which could be a fun variation once I get around to making some beanbags!

Keep an eye out for tomorrow’s post about how I menu plan!

xoxo Megan