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2018 Monthly Goals: March

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Man, February went by so fast! I blinked and it was gone! I accomplished so much this last month though. I hit my goal list hard and got so much done. 

February Goals:

1. Get all the trim in the house painted. DONE! I finished the last bit of trim earlier this week just scraping by under my February 28 deadline. It was so much work and took 3 full cans of paint but every piece of trim in this house has been painted. And I also painted all the walls in 2 bathrooms, Mason’s bedroom, and Zoey’s bedroom! Boom!

2. Make all necessary small repairs around the house. NOPE. Well, half done probably. I have a list of about 15 repairs that needed to be done and I finished about 9 of them. So it’s still a work in progress.

3. Clear out all the clutter in the house. DONE. Holy cow, where did it all come from? We made 3 trips to Goodwill and we have one more trip to make this weekend. Every single room, closet, drawer, and cabinet was cleaned out. 

4. Get every room staged. ALMOST DONE. The entire upstairs is completely staged and finished. Tyler’s room is done. The staging part is done but it’s the deep cleaning part that I’m working on now on the main floor. 

5. Take pictures of each room after it’s staged. ALMOST DONE. The entire upstairs is finished and all pictures have been taken and edited. Now I’m working on the main floor. I should be done this weekend hopefully. That week of the flu really screwed up my schedule.

March Goals:

1. Watch less TV. We are seriously contemplating cutting off the cable. It’s such a time suck. None of the kids watch television- the stick to YouTube, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video and Netflix. Matt and I have noticed that most of the time the television is just background noise or we’re watching reruns of the same old shows. So why are we paying $100 a month for it? I’m thinking about switching to Hulu Live because we can still watch the few shows that we really love and sports. That’s pretty much all we need. So my goal this month is to keep the television off during the daytime and evening and only watch a few shows at night. We’ll see how it goes.

2. Find some good pasta salad and slider recipes to add to my Spring meal plan. I’m trying something new for our meal plan this Spring. I’m doing a set meal plan- for example Monday is subs & salads, Tuesday is sliders, Wednesday is pasta salad, etc etc. 

3. Finish getting house fully staged and photographed. I’m almost done so this should be an easy goal to meet! I want to be ready to sell this house by mid-March!

4. Have family dinner at least 3 nights a week. We’ve seriously slacked off on the family dinners lately. We pretty much eat at different times every night and I hate it. Tyler pretty much is never home in the evenings but the little kids can all sit down at the table with us and eat together with no television.

5. Get more sleep. We’re up at 5:15am every weekday morning so staying up until 12:30am is not working for me. I’m tired and cranky and by the middle of the afternoon I’m completely unproductive and unmotivated. I’m a natural nightowl so this is going to be hard for me. But it has to be done. I’m going to try to be in bed by 10:30 and lights out by 11. We’ll see how this goes.

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Weekly Book Club {2.28.17}

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I haven’t been reading as much lately as I’d like because I’ve been busy getting this house in order. Painting, decluttering, rearranging, deep cleaning. I’d rather be reading. ha! But I have a couple of good ones to share this week. Both were library reads that I checked out from Overdrive.

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Cowboy Up by Harper Sloan– As the eldest Davis, Clayton has always tried to lead by example. He takes his job as head of the family businesses seriously, making sure the farm and auto shop are running smoothly—along with keeping an eye on his brother and sister. For him, there’s a time and place to let go of the control he holds with an iron grip. And with the way he grew up, coupled with disastrous end to his last relationship, he’s just fine with his quiet, solitary life. Most of the time. What he hadn’t counted on was cute, quirky, shy bookstore owner, Caroline Michaels. She’s the proverbial woman next door—well, the next town over, that is. Caroline hasn’t lived an easy life, but after escaping an abusive ex, she’s finally living it for herself. The last thing she ever expected was a one-night stand with Clay Davis, a night she can’t stop thinking about. So when she falls on hard times and Clay comes out of nowhere to her rescue, she realizes just how impossible it’ll be to stay away from him. Now all she has to do is convince him to live a little…Will Clay be able to give up the reins and finally settle down? And, more importantly, will Caroline muster enough courage to lasso him up?

My Rating: 4 Stars

I enjoyed this book. It’s number 3 in the series but it’s the first one I read. I wasn’t lost or confused about the story line so I’d say this book can stand on it’s own if you haven’t read the first 2. The story was paced well and had just enough romance, angst, and mystery to keep me interested. Definitely not a hard or super emotional read, although I felt for Caroline and what happened to her. I might read the other 2 but they’re not high on my priority reading list right now. 

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Spring Forward by Catherine Anderson– When a favorite customer on his delivery route needs a favor, Tanner Richards agrees to help without a second thought. The last thing he expects is to face off against the man’s spitfire granddaughter. Crystal Malloy is near her breaking point. Her beloved grandfather constantly skirts the rules at the retirement center where he’s recovering from surgery. She’s caring for his escape artist dog, even if it means abandoning her salon customers, and she has no time for a romantic attraction to the handsome new stranger. After Tanner’s reassigned to Mystic Creek, Crystal can no longer ignore how much she misjudged the man’s good intentions. She has known too much sorrow to easily open her heart, but she can’t deny that Tanner and his children could gift her with a happiness beyond compare–if only she can forgive herself for the past and accept that she’s deserving of such a love.

My Rating: 5 Stars

I was giddy when I saw this new release book by one of my favorite authors. Catherine Anderson never disappoints me. This book is number 4 in her Mystic Creek series and I have read all of them. This is a standalone so you don’t need to read the first 3 but you should because they are fantastic. I loved this story- from the crazy dog to the single dad aspect to the slow build romance. It was just so so good. Highly recommend this whole series!

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Crockpot Pesto Mozzarella Chicken Pasta

We are a pasta loving family. Pasta is one of the few things I can make that I know every single person in this house will eat without complaint. I really should just do a steady rotation of pasta and different sauces and save myself a lot of meal planning time. Ha! This dinner is one of our favorites. It’s easy, fast, and cheap. And the kids love it so much! I double this recipe sometimes so we can have enough for all the kids to take for lunch the next day.

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Ingredients:
2 frozen chicken breasts
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1 cup pesto sauce
1/4 cup butter or margarine
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1 box pasta noodles
1/2 cup parmesan cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions:
1. Add chicken to crockpot and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
2. Pour pesto sauce over top.
3. Add lemon juice.
4. Cut butter into slices and lay over top.
5. Cook on High for 4 hours.
6. Shred chicken, add cooked noodles and Parmesan cheese; stir.
7. Top with mozzarella cheese.
8. Continue cooking until cheese melts.

This is definitely one of those recipes that I could make every week and nobody in my house would complain! I love pasta recipes that I can throw together and make everyone happy. 

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5 Things Friday {2.23.18}

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1. I finally got to Zoey’s room this last weekend. Oh my gosh. My sweet little hoarder. I pulled so much stuff out of her room. So Much Stuff. More than I even knew she had crammed in there. But she was a good sport and helped me clean out probably 75% of the stuff she didn’t need. We packed up 3 bags of clothes to donate to a friend. She got rid of a bunch of stuffed animals and dolls and toys that she hasn’t played with in a long time. We got rid of her art desk because it was too small for her. Then I painted. The trim got painted a brighter white, the upper walls are a pale gray and the lower walls are a darker gray. Then we rearranged her furniture to make her room more functional. It looks fantastic! I haven’t done any decorating yet but the change is just amazing!

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2. Maliah has been doing so well lately that we were able to cut her weekly therapy down to once a month and she’s holding steady on her current dosage of her anti-anxiety medication. She continues to get great grades and spends a lot of time with her friends. I think she’s finally turned the corner. We like all of her friends so much and their parents are great too. It’s a joy to have a pack of giggling teen girls in the house. They love to hang out here….I’m sure it has nothing at all to do with the large amount of varsity football players who also love to hang out here. ha!

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3. The donate pile has taken over our living room. It’s stressing me out but I need to have all the donate stuff in one location. I just keep adding to it every single day. I look at all this stuff and I don’t know where it all came from! This is too much stuff! And we’ve already taken 2 loads to Goodwill, y’all!

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4. Once I finished Zoey’s room I moved into Mason’s room. His whole room needed to be painted also. I used the same paint from Zoey’s room to make it easy. And it looks fantastic! I cannot believe the difference it’s made. Mason got rid of a bunch of stuff too and we rearranged his room to give him more space. I took out his desk because it was just a clutter catcher and moved 90% of his toys to his closet because he had a ton of extra space in there. I pulled out a huge bag of clothes to pass on to my nephew and it felt so good to simplify!

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5. I had a warning light come on in my 2 year old Honda Pilot this week so we took it in for service yesterday. I was hoping it would be a simple quick repair but that’s not how things roll in this house. It’s the ECM- the engine computer module- that controls every main system in the car. Awesome. So it’s still at the dealership getting fixed and I’m in a rental car until further notice. I know it’s not that big of a deal, especially since we aren’t having to pay anything to get it fixed thanks to our bumper to bumper warranty, but it just feels like one more thing right now on top of all the other things. I just keep taking deep breaths and channeling all my frustration into cleaning out this house. 

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Weekly Book Club {2.21.18}

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The Soul Mate by Kendall Ryan– The smoking-hot one-night stand I was never supposed to see again? Yeah, well, I might be pregnant, and he’s my OB-GYN. Get ready to fall head over heels madly in love with the hottest OBGYN doctor you have ever met! This full-length standalone contains the most hilariously awkward lady-doctor visit, lots of playful banter and some good ol’ fashioned baby-makin’! One-click now for this summer’s swooniest read.

My Rating: 4 Stars

This book was not at all what I expected. It was good, it was just not the story I thought I was getting. At all. I enjoyed it but the blurb is misleading. It’s well written and I really enjoyed the banter between the main characters. I liked Mason more than Bren, I found her to be annoying for most of the book. This was a quick enjoyable fluffy read which is what I needed after a couple of heavy books. 

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Built by Jay Crownover– Sometimes you have to tear everything down to build something new. Sayer Cole is frozen inside. At least, that’s what it’s felt like for as long as she can remember. She’s yet to let anyone past her icy exterior – and the one guy she thinks might melt her heart couldn’t possibly be interested in someone so uptight. Rough, hard and hot-as-hell, Zeb Fuller has rebuilt his life and his construction business since protecting his family sent him to jail all those years ago. His elegant client, Sayer, makes him feel like a Neanderthal in denim, but despite the many hints that he’s been dropping to get to know her better, she seems oblivious to his charms. Just as things finally start to heat up, Zeb’s past comes back to haunt him and he needs Sayer’s professional help to right a wrong and to save more than himself. As these opposites dig in for the fight of their lives, fire and ice collide in an unstoppable explosion of steam.

My Rating: 5 Stars

I knew I would love this book. This series is a spin off of the Marked Men series, which was so fabulous. The characters in this new series, Saints of Denver, were secondary characters in the Marked Men series. I enjoyed every bit of this book. Sayer was a tough cookie who I was so frustrated with for the majority of the book but one you get into her history it’s easy to see why she was that way. Zeb, on the other hand, was swoon worthy. They had to really work for their relationship and nothing came easy for them. But man, it was an amazing read! I had this one in my unread shelf for so long and I’m kicking myself that I didn’t read it long before now. 

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