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December 18, 2021

Crocheting for Christmas and getting caught up. Crochet Snowman Pattern

Christmas Crochet

 Hi Y'all! Wow! How are we so close to the end of this year?!?!

This whole year has flown by. I stay pretty busy throughout the year, so I always feel so rushed towards the end. There is always something I never got around to, or kept putting off for later, thinking that I'd have more time.

You'd think I would realize by now, that isn't going to happen. My 2022 goal is to not overload myself. I want to set realistic goals, work on my time management, and seriously get more organized!

Every year I have this list of projects, whether homeschool, craft, reading, or blogging. I know that they need to be prepared and completed WAY before they are actually useful. (e.g. Christmas things should be finished by Halloween and published)

I know this and I try, but seriously get behind every time. 

This particular crochet post has been in the making for quite some time! The two main reasons I am just posting it late December are, 1. My computer is an old piece of fruitcake! And 2. I am no photographer.

Top of my list is a new desktop. I know, laptops. That just isn't for me. The photos, well I'm learning about light boxes and angles. I'm improving.

On to the crochet...

There are patterns that I absolutely follow to a T. Then there are patterns I play around with and tweak to my liking. Lastly, sometimes, I can just come across a picture of crochet and figure it out blindly, no pattern. I just go with shapes and piecing it together.

The pattern I used for this snowman came from They have a ton of patterns. I believe, both free and paid.
Honestly, I did pretty much follow this pattern, with the exception I wanted to see it a bit larger, so I went up to an I hook. Although, next time, for the nose and arms, I recommend no bigger than a G
(mine was done accidentally. Just forgot to go down a hook size)

One of my favorite things about anything that I crochet is being able to choose colors, and customize them the way I want them. This one was super fun. I let my daughters decide the colors for the hats, and scarfs(I altered the "snood"). These are so soft and snuggable.
My new obsession with yarn is the super soft "baby" yarn.
Here are the yarns I used for my snowmen.
in white(body), chocolate(arms), and, tangerine(nose)
This yarn is AMAZING!
in red and purple
I definitely will be making more of these! I hope you enjoy them as much as we have. Not only that, but I'd love to see pictures if anyone tries this pattern.
Be sure to go see Nataly Dastous and give her credit for the pattern.
She has some great patterns posted.
Happy Crocheting and Happy Holidays!

November 23, 2021

National Espresso Day(recipes included)

National Espresso Day

November 23, 2021

Did you know there was a day set aside just to celebrate Espresso? Neither did I. 

Espresso is, originally, a type of coffee that is made with a special machine in which the hot water is pressed quickly over the coffee grounds, creating a richer, thicker, and creamier drink.

The word espresso is a borrowed word referring to coffee brewed by forcing hot water through finely ground coffee. The method of quickly pressing is similar to doing what English call "express" or the Italian word "espimere".

The first espresso machine was invented by Luigi Bezzera in Italy, in 1901. His objective was to shorten employee breaks and speed up productivity.

Ok y'all. I am starting this post with one of those I was today years old moments!

How have I gone 41 years, and be an admitted coffee addict, and I did not know you could have an actual Espresso machine in your house!

I mean, I knew there was a special machine and technique, but I did not realize there were different sizes, types, and prices!

When I think of an espresso machine/maker, my mind instantly goes to some massive contraption in a busy little cafe'. All the levers, and gadgets, and the steam!

While doing my research for this post, by simply googling the word espresso, a ton of espresso machine/makers came up under Google shopping!

I mean tons! Big, little, pricey, affordable, electric, stove top...

How did I not know this? I never thought there was such a thing that a middle class household could afford or have the counter space for!

I'm so hooked. I have been now searching, researching, and deciding which one I want! I love the idea of the mini version of an actual café looking espresso machine, like this one,

Farberware traditional espresso maker

or if I want something a little more vintage looking to go better with my kitchen.

Primula stove top 6 cup espresso maker

I have an electric stove, so either choice would technically be using electric, although the first choice claims to have a cup of espresso in under one minute. That leaves the question, speed over aesthetic. For me anyway.

Now that I know we will be adding one of these, you know I had to go over to Pinterest and find some easy and yummy recipes.

And...before I share those, let me just let you in on another little secret. I had no idea that a cappuccino, mocha, macchiato, and lattes, are all  types of espressos, and are made using an espresso machine(jaw drop)

Please tell me I'm not the only one.

Now, I'll share a few recipes with y'all.

Honey Cinnamon Latte

Paris black Chocolate Macchiato

Vanilla Espresso Martini

Y'ALL, I cannot with these recipes! This could quickly become a problem. LOL

As if I need another excuse to live by the name CoffeeWastedMomma!

I'm gonna be unstoppable!

Join me and let's compare. Does anyone already own one? Do you have a favorite recipe?

I would LOVE to know! 

Now, Go celebrate National Espresso Day!

November 19, 2021

I've Been Reading: Book Review

 The Vampire Knitting Club(series)

by Nancy Warren

paranormal/cozy mystery

Tangles and Treason~Prequel/ Book #0.5
The Vampire Knitting Club~Book #1

" I needed comforting after discovering my boyfriend of two years, Todd, had stuck his salami in someone else's sandwich. I refer to him now as my ex-boyfriend, "The Toad".~ Lucy Swift

Book Blurbs:
From #0.5
In Elizabethan Oxford, Sir Rafe Crosyer is on a secret mission for the queen. He also wants to secure Constance's hand in marriage, not only for love, but for her safety, for there are rumours afloat that Constance is a witch. When he is attacked and left for dead, not only is his love in terrible danger, but also his queen. Unless he takes the unthinkable step...

From #1
At a crossroads between a cringe-worthy past(Todd the toad) and an uncertain future(she's not exactly homeless, but it's close), Lucy Swift travels to Oxford to visit her grandmother. With Gran's undying love to count on and Cardinal Woolsey's, Gran's knitting shop, to keep her busy, Lucy can catch her breath and figure out what she is going to do.

My Review:

I'm giving both of these books a solid 4 stars.
These are the first two books in Nancy Warren's The Vampire Knitting Club series.
There are a total of 13 books, or 15(counting the two .5 books)
The complete list is here:

I actually happened to find the first book by accident on my library app. I tend to always have some audiobook downloaded on Libby. Lately, I hardly have time to sit down with a physical book.
There are a ton of apps you can download with thousands of audiobooks for people always on the go.

By my mistake, I accidentally read book #1 first, not realizing there was a prequel.
I definitely am excited to continue onto book #3 and see where this series goes.
These two are, absolutely, cozy mysteries. Somewhere between Ghost Whisperer and any of the Hallmark murder/mystery series(usually based off books anyway), or a good Murder She Wrote.
You can certainly wrap up one of these "who done it" books in a few hours or a day.
That's one thing I liked about the first two. It is an enjoyable, fast-paced, light read, or listen, to keep your mind engaging.
There isn't any huge twists or mind-blowing moments, but that isn't what they are intended to be.
The characters are relatable, and each one has a purpose in the story. I'm not a fan of books that add characters just for word count r to fill a gap in a scene.
I always think, where'd they go? or What was that about?
Give them a purpose, or just omit them.
Sir Rafe Crosyer is a classic loyal servant/hero caught with two missions, protecting his queen and his love.
Lucy is a late twenties' gal, just out of a bad relationship, looking for solace and time to figure things out.
Gran is a typical grandma, knitting, sweet, caring, but with a magical twist
You'll have to read the books to get more characters.
I only gave them 4 stars because, again, I read the books out of order, not realizing there was a prequel. I definitely think it needed to go further with Rafe's character. I'm not 100% happy about how book #1 kind of drops him and starts off with a whole new story.
I can't get too much into that without spoilers, but if you read them(you should), then you'll see what I mean.
That's really my only complaint. Again, these are cozy, light reads, great for anyone looking for fast-paced, fun series.
Go and check them out. Remember, there are 15 books!

Always be watching for new book reviews!


October 27, 2021

I've Been Reading: Book Review

 The Favored Queen 

Carolly Erickson

Historical fiction/Tudor era

295 pages/hardcover


Quote: "Why must you go out of your way to stir up conflict?" ~ King Henry VIII 

From the cover: Born into an ambitious noble family, young Jane Seymour is sent to court as a maid of honor to Catherine of Aragon, Henry VIII's aging queen. She is devoted to her mistress and watches with empathy as the calculating Anne Boleyn contrives to supplant Catherine as queen.

My Review:

I honestly have been putting off and debating whether to do this review. I truly wanted to love this book, but it didn't pull me in as I thought it would. In actuality, I felt myself starting and stopping over and over. Either I just couldn't get into the story, or I found myself pausing to do some "fact" checking.

I am aware this is labeled historical fiction, but I also know that Carolly Erickson is considered a distinguished historian. I have read other books by her, and do not remember struggling throughout any of them.

Furthermore, I feel, even as a fiction book, Ms. Erickson has taken too many liberties in changing or adding to Jane Seymour's life and story.

To me, this wasn't a  fill in the blanks, where there is no actual record. It was more of, let's just create a whole affair that has no proof or make doubtful assumptions in history.

Historical researchers, Jane Seymour is known to have been kind-hearted, docile, subservient, silent, virtuous, and having good sense.
Erickson has made her to be more of a naive, flighty woman who is easily persuaded from one love to another.
In chapter 12, page 123 she is talking with Will Dormer(there was an engagement between them IRL) of their marriage plans and is having her gown made. Less than ten pages later, she has met Galyon Hone(actual Tudor glacier, but NO record Jane ever met him) and agrees to meet him in secret. Two pages later, quoted "So easily, did I leave girlhood behind that night and not with dear Will, but with a stranger."~ Jane
Sorry, Will, you're out.
The book goes on to her marrying King Henry VIII less than 120 pages later.

Also, I felt this book, while being read as Jane's voice, actually was more about Henry's first 2 wives, their lives, relationships, and all that was going on at court around Jane. She only becomes the main character after Anne's beheading, more than halfway through the book. 
I did give it 3 stars.
1. Carolly Erickson is a wonderful author. I've read a few of her other books
2. Anything Tudor is a win for me
3. It was an entertaining book. If my knowledge of Tudor history was less, I may have enjoyed it more as a historical fiction.

If you'd like to give this one a try, you can find it here

I hope you've enjoyed this book review. I am always reading something, so check back for more reviews.

October 20, 2021

How to Build Confidence in Our Children

National Youth Confidence Day


October 20th 

Confidence by definition is,
  • The feeling or belief that one can rely on someone or something; strong trust
  • The state of feeling certain about the truth of something
  • A feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities.
  • Similar to: trust, faith self-assurance, belief, credence, conviction, reliance

I feel such a need to write this post. I am a mother of three girls, and I have seen how quickly their confidence can whither. It may be for a few hours, days, or weeks. I know how it feels to have one event or test crush every ounce of confidence you had.
I am a firm believer in building each other up! Spread kindness and acknowledge someone's strengths and accomplishments, no matter how small.
Having confidence isn't about boasting or being arrogant, and I think somewhere along the way, it has been given that vibe. We've lost the true definition and replaced confidence with words like diva, cocky, and sassy. We've allowed bad behavior and disrespect to be diluted and made to look "cute" or given an excuse for it.
"Boys will be boys."
"She gets it from me."
"She/he won't take any crap."
I'm just using these as examples.
I want to use this post as an example, or guide, to get back to building the confidence in our youth in a positive way.
 Now, I'm not saying every kid, parent, or adult is going around encouraging or flaunting bad behavior.
I just think we can all use a boost in the right direction. A positive reinforcement to pass on to the younger humans. 
Be an example.
"Children will follow your actions before they repeat your words."
Here I have listed a few books that help parents encourage and teach self-confidence.

There is so much sadness, hurt, uncertainty, and meanness in the world right now. It is heartbreaking.
 I know I want to build my children up as much as possible. Many people need that reassurance every day.
 I like being reassured and acknowledging my own accomplishments.
I like knowing I have support and a cheering team.
Who doesn't need a confidence booster every once in a while?

Can you imagine how humanity could change if we gave out just one compliment or encouraged someone every day?
It takes less energy to be kind than it does to be mean.
For me, I feel better about myself(more confident) when I am showing kindness or complimenting others.

Sometimes, as parents, we forget to build up our children. Sometimes, we unintentionally break down their confidence.
I know I am guilty. We get busy, tired, or distracted. We get aggravated and frustrated. There are times, we don't even think twice about something that is important to them.
Little things to us, may be huge to them.
Let's build up their confidence. Even in little ways.
Here are some great ways to enforce this.

I really want to continue this post and lean more into positive affirmations. Not only for youth, but for anyone.
It isn't just the younger ones that need these.
Let's build each other up and spread healthy confidence in each other!

Happy Youth Confidence Day!
Go give someone a compliment!

September 29, 2021

National Coffee Day!

National Coffee Day!

It's gonna be a great day!

Hi y'all.
I really love doing these "Fun National Holiday" posts. It's just fun to celebrate and learn something new.
You know this will probably be one of my favorites.

National Coffee Day began on September 29, 1983, in Japan as a way to promote fair trade and to raise awareness for the plight of coffee growers. 

The beginnings of coffee:
It is believed that in Ethiopia, Kaldi, a goat herder, noticed his herd having an energetic manner and being unable to sleep after eating berries from a certain tree.
It is said that Kaldi shared his finding with an abbot, who proceeded to make a drink from the berries, and discovered he could stay awake longer hours during prayers.

Coffee moves east:
After word spread of this energizing drink, "coffee" spread to the Arabian Peninsula, Persia, Egypt, Turkey, and, Syria in the 15th century. This is around the time that coffee houses, known as qahveh khaneh which were used as entertaining and meeting houses.

By the 17th century it had been brought to Europe, quickly became popular and spread across the continent.
Some were feared or were suspicious of the beverage and referred to it as "bitter invention of Satan".
Coffee quickly replaced the breakfast beverage of beer or wine, and people became more alert and able to focus on their work.
By the mid 1600s there are reported to have been over 300 coffeehouses in London alone!

Modern day coffee:
Coffee was brought to what is now New York, by the British around the mid 1600s, although it didn't gain popularity as quickly here.
It wasn't until 1773, when the colonists revolted against a heavy tax on tea imposed by King George III. The revolt, known as the Boston Tea Party, would forever change the American drinking preference to coffee. 
By the 1800s coffee was produced and shipped all over the world.
The first coffee maker, made in 1818 was the percolator. Invented by a Persian metalsmith. His percolator design is still used today.
Here's my favorite part!
In 1886, Joel Cheek, began making Maxwell house. He named the brand after the famous hotel.
The first espresso machine was made in 1901 by Luigi Bezzera.
In 1971 the first Starbucks opened in Seattle, Washington.

In 2020 studies showed that Folgers Coffee was named the most popular brand among Americans.
We know that today we can choose from a wide variety of coffee drinks. You can get it hot or cold. Regular or decaf. Breakfast, mild, medium, Columbian blends.
There are frappés, lattes, iced coffee, espressos, cappuccinos. There are even coffee flavored energy drinks, but I'm still unsure why. Coffee is already a caffeine.

Oh, and the creamers, sweeteners, and more! There are a ton of ways to enjoy your coffee.

On a regular day, I'm a Maxwell House, bold blend, with half-and-half.
If it's from a coffeehouse, usually I'll go for basic iced coffee, one shot sweetener, and cream.
I do occasionally get one of the seasonal or fancier choices, usually something mocha or white chocolate, but I have to be careful. I mean, I am the #coffeewastedmomma
So, I have to limit myself...
I do.
This is the coffee maker that I own, and we love it. My daughter and I love the single brew/Kerig for our "fancy coffees", and I love the programmable 12 cup side. My husband leaves at 5am, so having his coffee already to go when he is, works great!
Plus, he only takes about 8 or 9 of the cups, so when I get up at 6am, the other 3/4 cups are still hot and ready for me. It has a two-hour time after brewing, and then the burner shuts off automatically.
My daughter has really been wanting one of the iced coffee makers, but we've not found an affordable one. Also, I'm not sure if we would use it enough to make it worth it, or we'll use it way too much!
Either way, I'm holding out on that purchase for now.
What is your favorite coffee maker?

I love going to Pinterest to find new, easy recipes for coffee drinks. Especially now, with the holidays coming around, and all the warm flavors being more available.
How do you like your coffee?
Do you have a favorite drink recipe you'd like to share?
Does anyone buy coffee beans and grind them at home?
I would LOVE to do this more. I do own an antique coffee grinder, but it is a more decorative piece than functional.
Any recommendations on a new one?

Here is a bit of my coffee obsession. I love collecting coffee mugs. The wackier, the better.

Hope everyone enjoys their day!
Celebrate National Coffee day!
Make sure to comment your favorite or choice of coffee for today!

September 22, 2021

The Wonderful Days of Fall, and All It's Warm Aromas

 It's officially Fall Y'all

That's right. It's here!
Were you ready for it? I am always going back and forth with this one. I feel like Summers get shorter and shorter.
I've always said Spring is my favorite season, for many reasons. My birthday is in Spring. Easter, which is my favorite holiday. I love when all things are blooming, sprouting, and peeping back out. It's a time to start fresh and get out there. 
There was also a designated vacation(Spring Break)!

I still consider Spring my favorite, but Fall is definitely growing on me as I get older.
Who doesn't want a natural clock telling them it's time to slow down, let things settle, and take a break! Amen!
Let me tell you, we need it!
We need that time to relax, rest, and reflect.
There are so many wonderful things going on that really bring the season to life, for me.
One of my favorite things about Fall is all the amazing scents that come with it!

1. First, for me, is sweet harvested hay! Oh, the nostalgia!
If you grew up on a farm, have driven down a country road, or ridden on a hayride, you'll understand.
If you know, you know. 

2. The smell of a bit ole pot of chili.
As I've gotten older, chili has definitely become one of my Fall favorites.
We are always busy, and winding down the day with a meal that you didn't have to stand and cook for over an hour is a win. Crock pot, slow cooker, whatever you call it, it's my best friend.
This is the Crock-Pot I've had for years. Simple 8 quart from Walmart. Not fancy, but it is well-used.
Plus, you really can't mess it up. Add whatever you want, beans, veggies, meat, spices.

3. While I'm talking about cooking, well go to baking.
I am admittedly the worst baker. I burn the pre-cut, break and bakes. No lie.
Daughter #2 and the hubs are the bakers. I love all the Fall pies. Apple or pumpkin, Yum! I'll take both.

4. I'm in Ohio, so if you have a fireplace, you use it! I cannot remember a Fall where you didn't smell firewood. It's just one of those staple smells. Even if it isn't a fireplace inside, someone is having a "bon fire" somewhere near. It's that distinct, sweet, burning smell.

5. Leaves are another distinct smell. Specifically wet leaves, if you're in Ohio. We seem to get more rain at the end of Summer, and into Fall, than we do in the Spring(most years).
PSA: my husband wants to personally thank the person who invented the leaf-blower!
I can only describe the scent as crisp, sweet, and humid.

6. Candles! I actually say Yum!, even though you don't eat them. If I could, I probably would!
Seriously, just the names of these sound sooo good! Apple cider, berries, pumpkin spice, cinnamon roll, hazelnut mocha, chai, fireside, toasted marshmallow, pumpkin banana scone. The list could go on and on!
Just go! Go check out these Yum Candles!

7. Lastly, and maybe my second favorite, is hot drinks!
Whether it be a pot of coffee(year-round for me), hot apple cider, a good ole chai latte, pumpkin spice frappé, or homemade hot cocoa, I'll take any of them!
What is your favorite "Fall" beverage?
Do you have a recipe? 
I am going to embrace this Fall. It has been one crazy busy year, and I'm ready for shorter days, and more indoor activities.
I plan to spend as much time as I can curled up in my fuzzy pants with my Chai latte and a good book!
What are some of your favorite Fall activities?

If you love Fall decor and are looking for some new things, check out Shein (10% off your first order), or Society6 
Both of these sites have some of the best Fall and even Halloween decor items. Everything from pillow covers, wall art, throws, coffee mugs, to door mats and outdoor flags.
Such cute stuff!

Be sure to let me know how you feel about Fall/Autumn.
I love to hear from you!
Happy Fall Y'all!
Be blessed.

September 17, 2021

Constitution Day 2021

 The History of Constitution Day

We The People...

 Origins and fun facts

There is quite a history and a lot of changes to what is today's Constitution Day.

Originally called I am an American Day, which began being celebrated every third Sunday in May 1940.
This was started by the suggestion of a NY news tycoon, William Randolph Hearst and was presented by President Harry Truman, setting aside this date to honor the American people, with those just immigrating into the United States.
With Hearst's popularity and efforts through the United States Immigration and Naturalization, in 1944 he sponsored a 16-minute film titled, I am an American. It became a hit.
In the next 5 years, the governors of the existing forty-eight states had issued state proclamations in agreement with the national holiday.

In 1952, Olga T. Weber petitioned to have the date changed to September 17th, in honor of the date the constitution was signed. She went all the way up to the United States Congress, and in 1953, President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed it. Changing the name to Citizenship Day and moving it to September 17.
Louisville, Ohio was the first city in the United States to celebrate Citizenship Day on September 17, 1952.

Louise Leigh studied the Constitution in her courses and was inspired to spread her knowledge and love of the Constitution. In 1997 she founded a nonprofit organization called Constitution day, Inc. to spread recognition of this important national holiday. Through her efforts, Constitution Day became an official holiday alongside Citizenship Day in 2004. 

The Constitution of the United States of America
We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

It is the supreme law of the United States of America. This founding document originally comprising seven articles, delineates  the national frame of government.
The Constitution was written during the Philadelphia Convention-now known as the Constitution Convention.
The purpose of it was to create a government that had enough power to act on a national level, but not so much power that fundamental rights would be at risk.
The signing took place on September 17, 1787 at Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

There were 39 delegates, representing 12 states, at the signing.

When the Constitution was signed, the United States population was 4 million.

The oldest person to sign was Benjamin Franklin(aged 81 @signing)

The youngest was Jonathan Dayton(26) of New Jersey

Patrick Henry was elected as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, but declined.

The word "democracy" does not appear in the Constitution

Daniel Webster, of Massachusetts, was called the "Expounder of the Constitution"

Thomas Jefferson nor John Adams signed the Constitution, as they were both serving out of the country.

George Washington and James Madison are the only two presidents to sign the Constitution.

It took 100 days to actually "frame" the Constitution

Pennsylvania is misspelled in the Constitution. (Pensylvania)

Those are a few of the fun facts I learned today. You can go through them all here:

I'm always fascinated by history. No matter our feelings or beliefs, on any matter, I feel knowledge is still our best asset.
Today, we celebrate Constitution Day.
I choose to be proud of the dedication, work, and thoughtfulness of the Founding Fathers.
Although, I may not agree 100% with all the Constitution, it is one of the greatest documents.
It may have been just the beginning. We don't know how they felt about the timeline or changes to be made. For them, it was a starting point. It was a document to give order and peace to The United States of America.
Our country has come a long way in 234 years.
Enjoy your day!

September 9, 2021

10 Essentials For Your First Apartment: Don't forget these

 10 Essential Items for Your First Apartment

Things you probably forgot you needed

Hey y'all.
I hope everyone is doing well today.

Have you ever gotten home from shopping and realized you forgot something?(We all have).
If it's not a necessity, you probably won't be too bothered by it. Just laugh it off and move on.
I cannot tell you how many times I've done this.
As a momma to 3 girls, there are thousands of times I have forgotten something they needed or wanted.
Every day, one of them has a list of things they need.
My two oldest are 23 and 18(senior HS).
I've been talking with my middle daughter that will be graduating in 2022. She is determined to stay on campus. I like to think of myself as a fairly organized person. I keep telling her I want her to be prepared. We all worry about our babies leaving home and not having everything they need.
This has had me thinking and wondering. What things will she need in a dorm, or even for her first apartment?
I wanted to make sure I thought of all the things she would never think of. 
All the things we never really have to worry about at home or as a teenager or young adult.
All the items you've always had that were magically, just there!
I tried to think of practical and functional things.

10 Must Haves for your first apartment

1. Spare key
You don't want to be locked out! Locksmiths are crazy expensive!
Also, if you have pets and vacation, someone will need access into the apartment to care for them.
It's always a good idea to give one to a family member, friend, or trusted neighbor.
(please DO NOT place it under the door mat)

Use It! I cannot stress this enough!
You don't want to be late because you've searching for your keys for half an hour.

Everyone needs one. Find something cute or to match your decor. We keep one under the end table. Drop random things in it(spare change, pens, extra phone chargers) and go through it occasionally. Or use it for your daily items(phone, wallet, glasses)

You'll want several. 1 for a door mat, 2 if you have a patio, 1 for bathroom, 1 or 2 for kitchen. I like area rugs also for bedrooms and living/dining rooms

5. Coat Rack
You'll want this, or extra hangers in your coat closet. Guests won't find it welcoming if you just toss their coat over a chair, on the bed, or leave them awkwardly holding them at the threshold.

6. Multipurpose wipes!
You'll use them on EVERYTHING! 
Great for quick cleanups when you're busy or having guests over soon. Wipe down tables, counters, any surfaces that gather dust.

Even if you don't cook often, these are just great storage to hide things laying on your counter. Aside from the typical flour, sugar, coffee, you can use them to store snacks, sugar packets, tea bags, singles packets(Crystal Light), receipts if you don't have another place 

These are small, convenient, and energy efficient for single people or a couple of people.
Great for bagels, mini pizzas, cinnamon rolls, break and bake cookies. Really any quick bread you'd want in small quantities and quicker than heating up the whole oven.

Candles, lighter, matches.
I suggest multiple. Place them in different rooms for easier access when needed.
You do not want to be stuck in complete darkness for any length of time. Always be prepared!

I'd suggest a small one in kitchen and bathroom
Have multiple size bandages, gauze, and Neosporan. Wound spray, alcohol pads, cotton balls, Q-tips, extra tweezers for splinters, latex gloves, etc
You never know when you'll need it when living alone.
You can't just yell, "Mom, I need a band-aid!"

I am always going to be adding to the list of what I consider my kids' needs, as I am sure you will.
Hopefully, this list at least will give you a good jump start and guideline to help make the transition 10 things less stressful.
Start your need and wish list now.
My daughter has even considered asking for some of these as graduation gifts, or gift cards to places she can buy up most of these things.
I'd love to hear what you think.

I forgot hammer and nails! 
Trust us, you'll need it!
We'll just slip #11 in here.

September 7, 2021

10 Books Titled "Never Let You Go" : The List I made

 10 Books Titled, 

Never Let You Go

by a variety of authors

Hey y'all.
Have you ever been looking for a certain book, but you can't exactly remember the Title? You just kind of have a vague idea of what it was called or what the main theme was.
I honestly do that a lot. I am constantly seeing #bookcoverporn, some great review posted, ads for new books coming out, or someone sends me recs.
I love it! I love it all! I know on my last day, my TBR list will still be in the hundreds. I read 2 or 3, and add 5 more before the week is done.

That is exactly how this post came about. I remembered this book that I wanted to post over on my Facebook page, but I could not think of the title!
Never Go Away?
Never Let Her Go?
You'll Never Go?
You get the idea. So I'm scrolling through my Goodreads app(I get distracted looking through all the books I want to read.), and then I just decided to go look over on Thriftbooks.
I just typed in Never Go titles and a whole page of books titled...
Never Let You Go or I'll Never Let You Go pops up. 
The very first one is the one I had been searching for! Yes!
Then, I couldn't just ignore 9 other books RIGHT THERE baring the same title! All different authors. A slew of genres. From suspense to children's books.

Hence, my list of 10 books titled:
Never Let you Go

There actually were more than 10, but I was trying to keep the list fun and manageable.
I hope you enjoy this list!
Happy Reading!
Save a tree, save a buck.
Buy Used Books!

September 1, 2021

Manners Matter! A list of Children's books to read.

Mind Your Manners, Please!

Teaching children a few basic manners goes a long way.

    I am always trying to find a great lesson to teach my daughter. She is homeschooled, so it is my job to be mom and teacher. One thing we have always taught our daughters, is manners.
Yes, I am the mom who says things like, "That's not ladylike." You can call it old fashion or sexist, or whatever you want. I use it, it works, and we believe in it.

Manners are so important in everyday life. It should be a habit that is universal, but it has to be taught. Manners aren't something children are born with or something they just know.

"Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it."
Proverbs 22:6

Teaching manners could be as simple as reminding a child to say please and thank you.
It can also be more difficult, as in teaching them not to interrupt someone when they are in a conversation.

There are a ton of manners that are fairly common and universal.
1. Say please and thank you
2. No hitting/biting
3. No screaming
4. Respect yourself and others.
5. Try to share
6. Table manners. Sit still, don't play with your food, etc
7. No burping or slurping
8. Use kind words
9. Help others
10. Do not stick out your tongue or roll your eyes

I'm fairly certain we all want children to understand and follow these, but we need to teach them.

As you all know, I am a total Book Nerd! Books are my go to for so much.
Teaching is one of the ways I use books daily.
Here is a fun list of a few books we either own, have read, or will be getting here soon!
I think my favorite one is the Dude, That's Rude!
You'll definitely have to check some of these out.

These are just a few of the many books available.
I almost always buy my books from
I just love old books!
Buy used!
Save a tree. Save your money!

I hope you find the perfect book for you to teach a child about manners.
Do you already have a favorite? I'd love for you to share.

August 22, 2021

"Making Time" What does that mean?

Making Time 

If you've come here to read my post, thank you for making time(pun intended) to read it.
This has really been on my mind lately. 
How do you make time? 
Last time I checked, I'm not God; creator of all things...including time.
It just isn't humanly possible!

Then we get people who are thinking, "Well, Trema, it isn't to be taken literally."
No? You don't think so. I have heard and seen so much about people having to make time.
They say things that tell people, if you want time, make it.
Here are a few quote/memes that I came across.

"Don't force someone to make time for you. If they really want to they will."
I'm calling total BS on this one! I cringe every time this meme pops up.
There are a ton of times during my day or week that I would love to sit and chat or visit with family or friends. Lack of doing so has 0% to do with me making time for them.

"It's not about having time. It's about making time."
Again, I'm not God.

"We all make time for what we feel is important in our lives."
Again, I can't make time. There are so many people and things that I value and think of as important, but I just don't have time. 
I'd love a whole girls' day, a day to take a 3hr nap, time to have full conversation without having to multitask or cut it short, a night to actually finish a board game with my kids.

My point is this.
We live in a time when over multitasking or over crowding our lives and schedules has taken over.
We make ourselves and others believe, if we feel unacknowledged, unwanted, or unimportant, that it must be because someone didn't make time for me.
If we didn't finish the laundry, dishes, or a book. If we didn't play long enough with our kids or ask them about their day, then we obviously just didn't make time for them.

It is so draining and unnecessary to any human to make them feel uncaring for not being able to MAKE TIME.
Our mental health today is horrible. People wake up every day already stressed out and anxious because of all they have to figure out how to accomplish before their head hits the pillow again tonight!(Let's not even start on insomnia! Thank You!)
You wonder why some say, "I didn't even want to get out of bed today."
This may be why. Ask them? Do you have a lot going on? Can I lighten your load?
And if you do ask, then mean it. 
Everything we do, or don't do; is constantly being judged.
We slept too late.
We ate too much.
We didn't spend time with 400 family members last Thanksgiving.
We don't teach our kids life skills anymore.
We preach this or that.
We don't include God anymore.
We don't spend one on one time with our spouse/partner.
It just goes on and on!
Whether it is mental or physical time, sometimes it just cannot be done.

Please, stop feeling guilty because you didn't or can't make time for whatever it is.
We all get just 24 hrs in a day.
We all have 100% different lives. Even others in your own household do not live the exact same 24hrs that you do. 
Cut people some slack and yourself too!
Smile, pray, hug, love
Less stressed, more blessed!

August 20, 2021

I've Been Reading: Book Reviews


Hey all,

I hope everyone is getting more reading time in than me. I feel like I am pulled in so many directions lately. My favorite things to do for myself are crochet, write/blog, and read! The latter I haven't found much downtime to do.

I used to be able to zone the world out and be completely engrossed in anything I was reading. Now, it seems every little thing irritates me when I'm trying to read. The train or traffic outside, phones ringing, kids arguing, T.V. up too loud, or just my brain in over-drive.

Lately, I've been depending on audiobooks to get in my reading. Our library has an adequate amount of books you can download through the Libby/Overdrive app, and it is 100% free! Bonus! Libby also has ebooks. There are several other apps. Audible, Scribd, NOOK, Storytel are a few I've seen on Google Play store.

The last two books that I have really enjoyed are,

Songteller: My Life in Lyrics by Dolly Parton

This is Dolly's latest book. Did you know she has written 7 books? Including two children's books. I had no clue!
It's no secret that Dolly Parton is so loved in our household. My 8-year-old wants to BE Dolly Parton when she grows up. No joke.
I came across this book while scrolling through Libby. It always shows books that may interest you, based off previously read audiobooks. I read a ton of memoirs, bios, and autobiographies. It is one of my favorite genres.(people's stories/lives fascinate me)
Then I download it and realize Dolly is also the narrator of the audiobook! Yes. Bonus!

This one really does make you feel like Dolly is right there with you. Just chatting away. She is so confident and comfortable in herself. I just love her.

Her message has always been, everyone is different. Everyone has their own story. Everyone makes mistakes. Don't judge, love more. Love life, love each other.

I definitely recommend the audiobook over the physical book. 

The Loyal Wife by Natalie Barelli

Another of my  favorite genres is definitely Thriller/Suspense/Mystery.
This one has it all.

Mini synopsis:
Trusting her wasn't a mistake. Betraying her was.
She thought she had the perfect marriage...
Tamra knows something about Mike. Something he did. Something evil. And she was prepared to carry the secret to her grave.
Not anymore.

This is the first book I have read by this author, but it probably won't be my last.
She definitely can grab you from the start. The middle got a little slow and ehh, but it did have a twisty ending. 
Again, this one I chose the audiobook, so maybe the narrator during multiple characters is what got fuzzy for me. It was still a 4/5-star book for me.
I hope you'll check these out. I'm glad I found them. Audio or physical, maybe even ebook(I haven't done those much), I recommend them both.
I actually did begin reading an actual book this week, When August Leaves by Amy S. Foster.
Hopefully, I'll get it read and be able to post a review.

Do you prefer audio to physical books?
What's your favorite genre?
Happy reading!

August 12, 2021

National Vinyl Record Day

 National Vinyl Record Day!

How cool is that?
I've always been pulled back into my childhood when I think about vinyl records. Being born in 1980, to me, it was the time of change between 8 tracks and records. Although, that really isn't factual.
8 tracks actual came out in September 1965, and records were out way before that. Almost 100 years before that.
My mom had/has a TON of records. Have you ever seen a picture or scene in a movie where the girl is laying in her room with records everywhere? Piled or strewn around as she listens. Yup! That was my mom,...and my sister and me.

The first record ever made wasn't even made of vinyl. Nope, it was made from shellac. Many inventors had been trying for years to find a way to record sound and be able to play it back.
Thomas Edison actually did record himself saying a piece of the nursery rhyme, Mary Had a Little Lamb, on a phonograph in 1877.
10 years later in 1887, German inventor, Emile Berlinger created the first device that recorded and played back sound on a lateral-cut flat disc, the forerunner of the modern record.
He founded the United States Gramophone Company in 1894.

It really is fascinating. Whether you speak German or not, it is pretty cool to hear the first recorded record.

In 1948, Columbia Records released the first actual record made from Vinyl.(Shellac records stopped being produced completely in 1960)
Vinyl is Polyvinyl Chloride(PVC)
This was a huge upgrade. Prior to vinyl, shellac records could only hold/record 1 song on each side. Approximately 5 minutes of music. Vinyl made it possible to record whole albums of songs.
Can you imagine being a teenager during this time?
It would be like in the 90's when we didn't have to rewind or fast-forward our cassettes. We could just choose a number of the song we wanted on a CD and play it right where we wanted it to start.
These kids would be mind-blown!

There are now, 7 main types of records.
LPs-long playing
10 inch(long playing microgroove records)
7 inch-singles
12 inch-albums(single cut at 45 RPM)
EP-extended play(somewhere between single play and LP)
Flex Disc(flexible, super thin disc)
Dub Plate(popular with DJs)

From 1887 until the 1960s records and record players were improved and standardized, with 33 and 45 RPM records supplementing most other formats in the years after WWII.
What we see today is pretty much been the standard record since around 1970.
Even with records remaining and being considered durable, we've still been through 8 tracks, cassettes, CDs, and MP3 players.
Surprisingly, in 2020(wasn't a total bust), vinyl record sales actually surpassed the sale of CDs.
Surveys have shown it isn't Gen X or Boomers doing the majority of buying, either. It actually is Millennials doing all the vinyl record buying!
Retro is in, I guess. I'll take it. 
Again, there is something totally nostalgic about a vinyl spinning out our favorite tunes.
A couple of the biggest selling albums today are,

If you don't have a record player, there are tons of options available from new, vintage or used.
Shut. The. Front. Door!
Check out this vintage looking gramophone!
I would love it!
I could also go for something more modern and retro, like this

Both are beautiful, and I can see myself listening to records for hours!
What is your favorite style?
Do you still own any "Vinyl"?
I hope you've enjoyed learning as much as I have. Happy National Vinyl Day!

July 19, 2021

National "Get Out of the Doghouse" Day!

 National Get Out of the Doghouse Day!

Why do we use this phrase, and where did it even start?

I'm so glad you asked. I'm going to fill you in soon. I have always been one of those people that like to know the how's and why's before I share any information. I have to at least try to dig into the history or facts about what ever it is. 
 E.g. Why do people say someone is "piss poor" or that it is "raining cats and dogs"?
Those are a couple of fun ones I looked up. You'll have to do your own digging on those and maybe some others.

Now, back to today's fun saying.
"Get Out of the Doghouse"
It is celebrated every year on the third Monday of July.
The phrase is known to be used when someone(spouse, friend, other), is in trouble or out of favor with the other. It is used as a punishment for their transgression. A shaming tactic.

I'm sure we all know what it means or how it is used, but do you know why we say it or where it started?
Would you believe it began in a classic children's book we all know, fairly well, I'd say?

It all started in 1911 in the story of Peter Pan, written by J.M Barrie.
That's right!
In chapter 16, Mr. darling is feeling guilty that the children flew away, and he consigns himself to the "doghouse" or kennel, as is the case in the book.
"When the children flew away, Mr. Darling felt in his bones that all the blame was his for having chained Nana up, and that from first to last she had been wiser than he. Of course, as we have seen, he was quite a simple man; indeed he might have passed for a boy again if he had been able to take his baldness off; but he had also a noble sense of justice and a lion's courage to do what seemed right to him; and having thought the matter out with anxious care after the flight of the children, he went down on all fours and crawled into the kennel. To all Mrs. Darling's dear invitations to him to come out, he replied sadly but firmly:
"No, my own one, this is the place for me.""
This may be why we associate the phrase more toward men. Who knows?

This is where the phrase or the idea originated, but the first actual printed "in the doghouse" verses Mr. Darling consigning himself to the kennel; actually can be found in James. J. Finerty's 1926 glossary of the language of criminals, Criminalese, in which being "in the doghouse" is described as being "in disfavor"
Not a big gap between Children's class literature and Criminal language.
Funny how that happens. 

The next confirmed print of the term is found in 1933 in an Iowa newspaper, Waterloo Daily, in which the "poor French ambassador" is being described as "still in the doghouse."

Books used for references:

I think the phrase has definitely become more popular, and widely used, over time.
We've probably all said it once or twice, whether we put someone there, or were there ourselves.

I hope you've enjoyed today's post and our fun facts about our National Fun Holiday.