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Posted by on Jan 3, 2014 in Children, Crazy Mom-isms, Creative, Decor, DIY, Economical Activities, Education, Family, Home Decor, Homeschool, Kids Activities, Kindergarten, Library, Lifestyle, Minimal Living, Motherhood, Organize, Save money, Stay At Home Mom | 3 comments

Space Invaders

Space Invaders

20140103-120818.jpgHere’s a little something you may not know about us: We live in a 1200 square foot town home.

Five people. Two bedrooms. One general living room. One kitchen. One dining room. One and a half bathrooms. One garage. One basement.

One work-from-home Mama. Three homeschoolers. One hundred percent childhood energy.

You do the math.

This photo depicts an organized, believe it or not, version of our current set-up for a “play area”. (It may appear a tad hazardous, but not to worry, those shelves are anchored several times to insure safety.) All of our new Christmas presents & overflow of toys have been sorted and arranged. This is pretty much everything the children have, nestled into this puzzle of shelving.

The homeschool area was just relocated yesterday & has to be organized, art & projects hung up, shelving installed. This is depicting the bare minimum.

There is always something more needed in this space. We always need something more to keep us from going bonkers while living in close quarters.

Sure, we have outgrown our space. You’re not the first person to think that, not would you be the first to call me crazy for choosing to homeschool three little ones in such a tight space.

The time will come when we have our own home, but now, life is just too busy and hectic to have to worry about a new roof, a leaky hot water tank, broken windows or a new refrigerator.

We are making due with what we have because that is the way to happy.

We are choosing happiness together. Really close together.

For tips on how to stay organized with lots of toys, books, games, puzzles, and supplies, please don’t ask me.20140103-121935.jpg

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Posted by on May 16, 2013 in Children, Choices, Creative, Economical Activities, Etsy, Family, Handmade, Homemade, Homeschool, Life, Motherhood, Motivational Posts, Music, Natural Parenting, Organize, painting, Parenting, Passion, Philosophy, Save money, Stay At Home Mom, sweet whimsy designs, Work From Home, Working Mom | 2 comments

Lately (May 2013)

Lately (May 2013)

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Full disclosure: the is the raw, honest truth of my life as we know it. Our life. You don’t need to know everything, but this is the jist of it…

Lately I’ve been busy.

I know, I’ve said this before.

I started this blog in 2011 in hopes of releasing my voice for all of you to hear. I wanted to share and discuss with you all life has to offer. A few years prior, in 2009, I went to the County Clerk’s office in my hometown and bought a DBA as sweet whimsy designs. I had no idea what, exactly, I would do with it, but I know I had something to offer the world. I had great big visions of a roaring awesome blog / shop. I think it still seems so new, so fresh, so advanced.

I took time to have a few more children, (heh), but all the while I was fondling my brain to think of the next big thing that would help our one-income, middle-class family stay afloat.

I took up knitting. I made stationery. I created…things.

I started teaching a weekly music class for little ones. I love this! This class has added a little more light & joy to my life, which is already pretty bright.

In December of 2012, just last December, I saw some simply-painted peg dolls in pots in a photo of a blogger I follow on Instagram.

Hmmm…

I thought I could paint some more intricate peg dolls for my kids, for Christmas!

You see, the truth is, we were underwater financially last Christmas. Heck, we’ve been financially drowning for several months years now. We’re not going on extravagant trips (or any trips, for that matter), or spending all our cash on nice clothes and shoes (oh no, I assure you I find ways to save money, even get our cool stuff for free), we’re not even in over our heads with a mortgage or brand new cars. We’re simply trying to get by. On one income. A family of five.

Back to my point.

I had to make gifts for my kids so they would have things to open on Christmas morning.

Initially, I got a great response from the peg dolls. Not only from my own kids, but from other kids visiting, from parents, from my family.

I started ‘putting myself out there’, making more peg dolls and other hand-painted wooden things. I knew we had to start getting ourselves out of this mess, but at the same time, I insisted on raising my own children. As well, we have chosen to homeschool. Although I’m sure it can be done, I’m not ready to take on working full-time and homeschooling. I want to be the one raising our kids. End of story.

But this is hard.

In March, my husband lost his job.

*CUE THE REALLY HEAVY-DUTY STRESS*, the kind that makes you unsure whether to yell or scream or laugh or jump off a cliff, all at the same time.

Three kids. No working parents. No house to call our own.

This is when the haziness of life turned into crystal-clear focus.

Our children are healthy. We are healthy. And we are grateful. Soooooo stinkin’ grateful for what we do have. Overall, all things considered, we are all so happy, still happy.

That is the most important point of the story. Everything else will fall into place…with a little hard work, of course. (Remember one of my Coldplay quote, the one I used to remind people about natural childbirth? “Nobody said it was easy. No one ever said it would be this hard.”* Well, it turns out that quote rings true for life as well. Go figure!)

So, since March, I have been working. Painting, networking, ‘putting myself out there’ again. This time, it is paying off, in both the literal and figurative sense.

sweet whimsy designs is taking off. It’s about to soar through the clouds and into the skies, unbound by hesitation or fear. Fear of the unknown can be extremely enlightening if you let it be.

Just let it be.

My little side-biz, created so I could stay at home with my three adorable children, is about to reach new heights.

It’s happening so fast.

Thank you, family, friends, readers and strangers. Thank you for being there for us. We appreciate every comment, every share, every word of encouragement. Please continue to boost sweet whimsy designs / the whimsical sweet to new heights, if you believe in me, if you really believe in us.

It’s time.

Visit my shop on etsy, sweet whimsy designs on Facebook, and on follow me on Instagram…if you’d like ;).
*quote from Coldplay, “The Scientist”

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Posted by on Feb 2, 2012 in Friends, Healthy Lifestyle, Ina May Gaskin, Motherhood, Natural Childbirth, Organize, Passion, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Symptoms, Stay At Home Mom, The Bradley Method Of Natural Childbirth | 3 comments

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly Of Pregnancy:  33 Weeks And Counting

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly Of Pregnancy: 33 Weeks And Counting

I guess we could call this the home stretch…in anywhere from 4-10 weeks, there will be a new baby taking residence in our home.  The nerves are starting to fluctuate between excitement and fear, and the belly is definitely starting to blossom.  Sweet Baby number three is coming soon!

I’m finally getting around to the update to the ten questions I brought you in Sweet Family:  Party Of Five!  Here is the 33 week installment!

Am I still in shock from the idea of being pregnant?  No.

Do I have extreme fatigue, all-the-time nausea, uncontrollable vomiting, “duh” moments, migraines, super low blood pressure, low blood-sugar levels & a general feeling of “BLECH-ICK-YUCK” again? Yes, but less frequently and not as bad thanks to a few supplements, an acid reducer & some really great acupuncture!

Am I happy in the third trimester & hopefully feeling like SuperWoman again?  SuperWoman?  No. Happy to be in the third trimester?  Yes.  These are the greatest moments!

Are the kids excited?  Yes!  Both children are looking forward to loving the baby in their own ways, from helping to feed the baby to kissing and hugging the baby, rocking the baby, snuggling with the baby, even reading to the baby!

I am ready for everything pregnancy-related?  No This is still my answer!

Am I prepared to give birth again?  YES!  33 weeks seems to be my point of feeling nervous & afraid of birth to “BRING IT ON!”.  I am strengthening both my body & mind in preparation for what it has to endure in a few short weeks!  PUMPED!!

Have we used the Mucciphone* to communicate in utero with baby yet?  Yes!  The kids find it tons of fun to talk, sing & laugh to the baby in Mommy’s belly!

Will we find out the gender of the baby? Yes…we did & it’s still a girl as far as we know!

Do I want to know everything there is to know & more regarding pregnancy & childbirth, AGAIN?  Yes.  Still going strong in this department.  I am always looking for new suggestions…got any?!  Right now, I am re-reading Ina May’s “Guide To Childbirth” as well as “Your Pregnancy Week To Week” & dabbling in “Birthing From Within”.  I have read several others this time, again,…just can’t seem to get enough!

Do we feel blessed?  YES.  Truly, thoroughly blessed.

Holding My Baby Belly @ 33 wks

I hope to blog a few more times before the baby is born.  We have a lot of organizing to do, as the energy levels may not be too high these days due to lack of sleep but the nesting instinct is at an all-time high!  The plan is to reduce, reuse & recycle!  Lots to go through to make room for baby & the usual pregnant Mom fear that none of it will be done in time…that’s me!!  Only this time, I’m way more laid back because I know everything will be ok.  Everything will work out.  Thank you, acupuncture treatments!  (Lucky for me, a good friend of mine – whom I met in our firstborns’ Bradley classes – is a licensed acupuncturist in the area.  She’s helping for all sorts of reasons!  Get in touch with me if you’re in my area & are interested!)

Until next time…

 

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Posted by on Oct 2, 2011 in Children, Family, Life, Moderation, Motherhood, Natural Parenting, Organize, Philosophy, Stay At Home Mom | 1 comment

When It Rains…

When It Rains…

Attention Stay-At-Home Moms:  I seek your knowledge!  Being at home with my children is financially ambitious!

With each day comes an entire new set of challenges.  Usually, when it rains, it pours, as the case may be on this day.  The literal rain today has taken over our plans to have fun in the fall sun.  Instead, we’re forced to stay indoors & clean, organize & refresh our home.

Within the next month, we have to decide where we will live for the next 6 months to a year, maybe longer.  We have outgrown our space!  Certainly it won’t get any better when we add a fifth body in the Spring.

Financially, we have found it nearly impossible to live on one income (my husband’s) while I stay at home with the kids.  Somehow, we manage, even if it’s just by the skin of our teeth.  Maternity “leave” from my self-employment has turned into a 3 year hiatus from full-time work.  At this time, I find it more important for our family to be home with our children.  That is a decision that didn’t come without consequences, but is one that we are 100% dedicated to & will do anything to make functional.  I look forward to hearing from my readers any tips & advice on how to make it work.

So, off we go to reorganize, not only our home, but our future.  There is a lot on our plate right now.  It is up to us to figure it out.

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Posted by on Jun 13, 2011 in Arts, Children, Crafts, Creative, Etsy, Handmade, Homemade, Kids Activities, Moderation, Organize, Philosophy, Stay At Home Mom, sweet whimsy designs, Work From Home | 8 comments

Do You See My Glue?

Do You See My Glue?

It’s a bronze-colored squeeze bottle of my favorite brand, Aleene’s.  (I had to google the brand name spelling since I don’t have the bottle handy to double-check.)

I can’t find it anywhere.  I need it, pronto, for a project that is going out in the mail today.  I really don’t want to pack up both kids, strap them in their carseats & head out to the art store just to buy another bottle when I know it’s in that mess somewhere.  Not to mention, I’ll leave the store with a bunch of stuff for more fun activities that I really don’t have time for. 

Creative people need a lot of stuff.  (There I go again with that word, stuff!)  I have boxes and cases and bags of stuff to make other stuff.  I’ve recently discovered that I have done a project from every aisle in Michael’s.  (Great coupons on that site, by the way.)  Isn’t that crazy?!  It’s taken 32 years of ongoing arts and crafts to accomplish that unplanned goal!  Woohoo for me!

Anyway, the point is I have so many supplies I could seriously start my own shop.  See that bookcase full of junk? I have another section of the house dedicated to knitting, another for paper goods, another for beading & jewelry making, another for painting, and another and another and another.  Oh yeah, and a very large section of the basement dedicated to making things prettier.

Organization is key, but I have a really hard time finding the time to keep up with the constant additions to my creative whirlwind of paraphernalia.  Sometimes I even rope the kids in to help, especially when it’s their art supplies.  They’ve got quite the collection going already, too.  I guess it’s only natural seeing how their mother exists purely through creativity.

Back to why I started writing in the first place ~ if you can see my glue in those partially organized artsy-fartsy shelves, please comment below and let me know.  I’d really appreciate it.  Thanks 🙂

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Posted by on Jun 11, 2011 in Children, Family, Healthy Lifestyle, Life, Moderation, Motherhood, Organize, Philosophy, Stay At Home Mom, Work From Home | 2 comments

Blogging Timefreeze

Blogging Timefreeze

 

I was going to write a “Fab Five Friday” list yesterday.  I missed “Wordless Wednesday” or “Terribly Twosdays”.   A few days before that, I wanted to post something. 

Anything.

I must be having some sort of blogger brainfart.  Or it could just be brainfreeze in general, but not the kind you get from drinking a slushy too quickly.  Maybe I have nothing interesting to say.

What do I think it is, honestly?  TIME.  I have no time.  I am writing this in my pajamas at quarter to eleven on a Saturday morning in between bathing my children and emptying the garbages throughout the house so we can actually do something today.  I haven’t even had a chance to get dressed.  Non-stop since 8am this morning.  (And that was sleeping in!)

I’m pretty good at time management, especially now that I am a stay-at-home Mom of two young children and have started my own at-home business on top of my existing teaching schedule, all while supporting a just-as-busy husband.  Some days feel like it will never get done, whatever it is.  Those are the days when I ponder, “I think I am good at managing time…?”

Think about it as an ever-changing way of life.  Each day is different and each day brings about new moods in the people around us, therefore we must be willing to bend a little to make time for the important things.

The little things.

Today, my little thing is this little blog post.  Uninteresting and boring, yes, maybe.  That’s what is on my mind at this very moment, and that’s what I needed to do today to release that thought and free up some room in my overstuffed Mom-brain.  Not to mention I needed to write this blog so I don’t feel bad about not writing.

So, here.

Thank you.  Ahhhh, that feels better.

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