Amy Beth

Monday, March 30, 2015

Discover New Blogs

Liebster2

My friend Tina, from the blog Go Big or Go Home, recently nominated me to receive the Leibster blogging award. This award is basically a way for bloggers to honor and recognize other bloggers they enjoy and want to introduce to their readers. So if you’re visiting from Tina’s blog, welcome! Make yourself at home and stay awhile!

If you’re one of my regular readers, I highly recommend that you pop over to Tina’s blog and take a look around. She writes about home and craft projects, style, and her experiences being a new mom! Reading Tina’s blog is like sitting down to chat with a good friend. You should definitely check it out.

So the fun part of this award is the nominator gets to ask 10 questions to the nominee. So here we go!

1- What’s your blog about?

I write about various creative and DIY projects, activities to do with your kiddos, simplifying, and thoughts related to living a full and happy life.

2- What did you want to be when you grew up?

A ballerina! And once I got out of kindergarten and became more practical about my future, a teacher. It wasn’t until I became a grown up that I found my place as a graphic designer.

3- What is your favorite beauty product?

Boscia

Does soap count as a beauty product? After years of problem skin and using products that irritated and dried my face out, I started using Boscia Clear Complexion Cleanser. It keeps my skin as clean and blemish free as anything else (which isn’t perfectly, but I’ve given up on that) but it’s gentle and doesn’t dry me out. I also love that it’s made with natural ingredients and no preservatives. After I started having babies I became a lot more wary of the chemicals I put on my skin, so I feel safe using this soap every day.

4- What brand is your favorite pair of jeans?

Whatever fits. I don’t go jeans shopping very often, and I don’t really have a go-to brand. However, I do have fond memories of a pair of Gap jeans back in high school.

5- Tell me about your favorite day in your life!

I don’t know about one single favorite day, but I’ve learned that great days usually include the following:
* A feeling of accomplishment – This might mean getting on top of chores, completing a project, or just trying out a new activity.
* But also plenty of rest and leisure time. A great day won’t feel hurried or stressed.
* Lots of time with family – Sometimes it might just be with my little family of four, or it might include grandparents and aunts and uncles.
* Great weather and time spent in it.

Some days that fit the bill that I’ve talked about on the blog include this past Christmas and the day we went to the zoo.

6- Why did you start blogging?

For the (potential unlikely future prospect of lots of) money! Just kidding. Blogging is a way for me to express my thoughts in a way that is fun and comfortable for me. I’m pretty introverted in person, and express my thoughts much more clearly through writing (mainly because it gives me the chance to revise, and revise, and revise), so blogging is a nice way for me to get my thoughts out of my head and out into the world. It’s also a great tool for self-improvement. I’m more likely to complete projects or try new things when I’m looking for something interesting to post on the blog. A blog full of “I took a nap and watched TV today” would get old pretty quick.

7- Where is your favorite place in your house?

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My absolute favorite place is actually outside the house, in the backyard. We have a great shade tree that makes even the hottest summer days pleasant to be out in. Given that it’s still winter right now, I’m really missing afternoons spent under the tree.

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It’s also gorgeous in the fall.

8- Coffee or tea?

Tea. But only when iced and full of sugar. The way my grandma makes it.

9- Tell me about your favorite DIY project.

I’m pretty proud of my coat closet makeover. It’s a project I brainstormed, planned, and executed all by myself. And we use it everyday!

10- Where do you get outfit inspiration?

My closet and the weather. Honestly, most of my outfits aren’t very “inspired.” Lately I’ve been spending most of my days in sweatpants and long-sleeved t-shirts. But I’ve been in a slow process of clearing out my closet of things that I don’t love, and hope to build up my wardrobe with some good basics once I’ve gotten through the postpartum size fluctuations. I’m really intrigued by the idea of a capsule wardrobe and hope to form one of my own eventually.

So there you have it! Thanks, Tina, for the fun questions and the nomination!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Links for you

Work station straight on view copy

It’s been a while since I’ve shared some links from the internet. I haven’t decided how much of a link sharing blog I want to be or how to best fit it in with everything else I write. But I have several good ones that I’ve been sitting on for a while now and I want to share them with you. So here it goes:

The biggest thing separating people from their artistic ambitions…

I have no ambitions to write a novel, but I do have lots of other creative goals. I think the point about deadlines is so true. I made a lot stuff for work – because I had to get things done for certain events by a certain time. At home, things just languish. How can I give myself more deadlines, without feeling artificial or stressing myself out?


Free Project Life Journal Cards

This is a really cute collection of journaling cards for your Project Life album. Just download and print out!


Water Color Pencil Palette

This is such a good idea for taking painting on the go. I’d really love to try it out someday. I didn’t even know water color pencils were a thing!


To Reuse this Notebook, Pop it in the Microwave

What?!?!


It Goes So Fast (Not a Parenting Essay)

Oh, man. I can already feel this as I’m just beginning my 30s. How in the world did I ever reach such a grown-up sounding age?


And just for fun…

Comedy Character Tournament of Champions

My final four? Liz Lemon, Leslie Knope, Dwight Shrute, and Kenneth Parcel. From there I really can’t choose.

Friday, March 13, 2015

These Days // 12

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It’s another Friday! Here’s what’s been happening these days:

loving: the first signs of spring! I went outside without a coat today. There are tiny green shoots sticking out of the dirt. The snow has finally melted away. And the daylight has been saved. I really hope spring sticks around.

bouncing: my baby on my knee. She loves it and it makes her smile.

celebrating: Charlie’s birthday. Still! We had family in last weekend for a little birthday party. I love seeing how much Charlie is loved by his family.

making: more pages in my photo album. Be looking for more posts about that soon.

thanking: God for the wonderful community of support we have around us. We had Charlie and Penelope dedicated in church on Sunday and it was such a reminder of how much God has blessed us with friends and family to help our children realize the full and wonderful life God has for them.

Enjoy your weekend! Hopefully it acts spring-like for you too!

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Enjoy

Enjoy

The idea of having a word of the year is not a new one, but it has certainly seemed to gain in popularity over the past few years. Many people say that having one word to focus on all year long helps them achieve their goals and order their life around what they feel is really important. The more spiritual among us say that the word comes from God and that he uses that word to reveal himself over the course of the year. It’s all very lovely and nice, but I’ve never really gotten into it myself. Mainly because it seemed like so much pressure. To choose, out of all the words in the English language, a single word that should somehow change your life (or at least improve it in some way). It sounds like a daunting task. So I never really bothered.

But this year, after hearing about the words a few people in my life had chosen, I got to thinking, “What would my word be if I picked one?” Which really is the same as just picking a word, but for some reason it felt like an easier decision to make. And it didn’t take long for me to come up with it.

Enjoy.

I’m very aware of all the blessings in my life. All the things that are amazing and good that I don’t really deserve. But even with all that blessing I find if far too easy to feel like life isn’t going my way. The chores are never ending. I have to provide food for people to eat three times a day. Children get fussy and whiny and willful. And I never seem to have enough time to do the things that I want to do. But really, despite all these things, when it comes down to it I have a pretty amazing life.

Enjoy.

This year I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to stay home with my kids and focus my energy on our family and our home. It’s what I’ve always wanted, and I feel like if I don’t enjoy it I’ll kind of be missing the point. I want to end each day able to say that I enjoyed my kids. That I enjoyed my time at home. That I found a way to enjoy the day even if some parts were frustrating or boring or hard.

Enjoy.

I also want to be a person that others enjoy being around. I want my husband to enjoy his time with me. I want our kids to enjoy having mama around all day. I want my family and friends to enjoy the atmosphere I create in our home. I want you, dear reader, to enjoy the words I write on this blog.

So there you have it. A word for the year that I wasn’t looking for. I like it. It feels good. It feels like the right thing to aim for this year. I also think I could make good use of it as a valediction (that’s the opposite of a salutation — I had to look that up) for emails and blog posts. So that’s handy.

Enjoy!

Friday, March 6, 2015

These Days // 11

These days image

Hello, hello! It’s almost another weekend! I hope you’ve been enjoying the “these days” posts as much as I’ve enjoyed writing them. I find it’s a nice way to look back on the week and acknowledge the good things that have happened. It’s all too easy to live these little moments and then forget they ever happened to you. I hope that by having a record here on the blog that I will remember the little, everyday moments that make up my week.

So these days we have been:

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making: granny squares. I’ve been spending several evenings this week binge watching The Mindy Project while crocheting little granny squares. I love how quick and easy they come together. I have grand plans of someday turning a bunch of granny squares made from scrap yarn into a big cozy blanket.

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celebrating: Charlie’s third birthday. We kept the celebration pretty simple here at home. Charlie went with me to the store to pick out some cookies which we then made for lunch. Complete with candles.

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And then he got his very own camera as his present! It’s been a fairly regular thing for him to pretend to take pictures, so we figured he would enjoy getting to do it for real! He was so surprised and I think a little in awe when he opened it up. Which was pretty much the cutest thing ever.

planning: a trains birthday party. His actual birthday may have been a simple affair, but this weekend a bunch of family are coming in town for a slightly bigger celebration. This year’s theme is trains because I couldn’t bring myself to do cars again. The boy is nothing if not consistent in his love of transportation vehicles.

wanting: some new art supplies. I have dreams of someday knowing how to paint. But that takes practice. And some paints and brushes to practice with. Maybe someday I’ll get around to getting those things.

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playing: in more snow! After getting over a foot a couple weeks ago, which just so happened to be the most snow our area has seen in years – or rather, decades – we got another foot and a half this week! Which breaks the all time record for snowfall in a single storm. When it rains, it pours. In it’s frozen form, apparently.

Just for fun: here’s a link to the biggest snowfalls on record in Kentucky (as of last winter. It doesn’t include this past month’s craziness). I remember playing in the snow as a kid in ’94 and ’98, which got 10″ and 11″ in a day respectively. Those are some of my best winter memories. The two snows we’ve gotten in the past month both beat those. I hope we don’t have to go another 15 years before Charlie sees another big snow.

Enjoy your weekend!

Coffee with Caitlin