Eight Time-Saving Cooking Tips

1. Plan meals at least a week in advance to incorporate the use of leftovers. For example, have baked chicken, mashed potatoes, and gravy for dinner Sunday, and then use the leftover gravy as the base of beef stroganoff Monday. 2. If you know you’re not going to have time to cook one evening, prepare […]

Scheduling Quiet Time

Scheduling quiet time isn’t easy for busy moms. I find that a lot of the time I don’t even have the time to sit down and schedule my quiet time. Sound familiar? Finding a few moments to yourself is difficult whether you’re a working mom or a stay-at-home mom. As a working mom, I get […]

The Heart of a Humble Parent

Do you ever talk to your children about your failings? About your sometimes unenlightened decisions? I was raised with a distorted view that life is just something that happens to you, and not a reality that is formed, in part, by your everyday decisions. When you don’t evaluate the impact your decisions have on your […]

A Child Can Make a Difference

Sometimes dreams really can come true! May 8th – 11th, 2000, my daughter and I traveled to Disney World in Orlando, Florida, because of a dream my daughter, Amanda, has to make a difference in this world. Amanda (then a 6th grader) entered McDonald’s Millennium Dreamer contest and told them about her contributions to the […]

Time Management for Kids

Do you ever feel like there’s not enough time in the day? You’ve just realized it’s time for bed, and you still haven’t accomplished all you set out to do today? Put yourself in your kids’ shoes. If you can’t prioritize and accomplish your own daily tasks, how can you expect your children to do […]

Timely Thank-You’s

When I was growing up there was an unwritten rule at our house: “Thou shalt write thank you notes.” And in a timely manner. You could beg, plead, and hope mom would forget, but she never did. I still remember my 6-yr-old brain struggling over the pencil and stationery my mom put before me after […]

The Giving Jar

Giving with a happy heart. If you teach a child to give with a happy heart you will raise a child who will never hesitate to lend a helping hand. Children enjoy helping others, especially if they see their parents doing the same. When a child’s basic physical and emotional needs are met, they are […]

Helping a Child Overcome a Fear of Dogs

It seems inevitable that at one time or another a child will have an unpleasant run-in with a dog. When my twin boys were about 18 months old, their first encounter with a dog was not pleasant for them. The dog was fairly small, but very energetic and ran straight over to them and started […]

Buying in Bulk

Shoppers have enjoyed the convenience of buying in bulk for a number of years. My own bulk buying experiences have been hit and miss at best, but I recently discovered just how convenient buying in bulk can be. There are a number of advantages to buying in bulk: – some items are available only in […]

Five Secrets to Making Better Cookies

– Make sure your cookie sheets aren’t too thin. The heavier your cookie sheet, the less likely your cookies are to burn. If you can’t afford heavy-duty cookie sheets, you can cover your thin ones with layers of aluminum foil. – Experiment with the temperature of your oven. My oven is always hotter than what […]

Converting Recipes to Lowfat

The fat content in recipes can be reduced in a variety of ways: When buying hamburger, look for extra lean hamburger. This type has much less fat than regular hamburger. You can also substitute ground turkey for hamburger. Turkey has a slightly different taste, but it is good and generally costs less than hamburger. Ground […]

Freezing Homemade Baby Food

With our twin boys getting ready to start solid food, I have been reading about making and freezing my own baby food. It is very easy! You can make up large quantities of baby meals and freeze them for later use. Green beans are in season and were on sale at the grocery store, so […]

Hearty Homemade Soups for Babies and Toddlers

Hearty soups make great meals for babies and toddlers. These soups combine meat and vegetables into one easy meal, they are inexpensive to make, and they freeze well for later meals. Beef Stew 1/3 c. flour 1 1/2 lb. stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes 2 tbsp. vegetable oil 3 c. water 4 medium potatoes […]

Homemade Bread Sticks for Baby

Is your baby teething? Homemade bread sticks are easy to make and are great teething biscuits for older babies. You can make bread sticks out of most any kind of bread by baking at a low temperature (150-200 degrees) for 15 to 20 minutes, or until bread sticks are hard and crunchy. For the recipes […]

How to Read to Your Baby

When my twin boys were born, I was very excited to read to them. They had received a lot of neat books as gifts, and I was looking forward to sharing their books with them. What I wasn’t expecting was them not focusing on a book for more than a second or two so I […]

Homemaking 101: Practice Makes Perfect

I recently paid a quarter for one of the most inspirational homemaking books I’ve yet to come across. Published in 1952 and written by Carolyn Coggins, it is called Successful Entertaining at Home. At first glance I thought this book was just a manual for teaching you how to host a successful dinner party, but […]

Black and White Themed Teen Bedroom Decorating Ideas

When we found out we were having twins, our teenage daughter volunteered to move into a smaller bedroom so that the twins could have the bigger one. It was definitely time to come up with a new bedroom theme! We also didn’t have much space to work with or a lot of money to spend. […]

Heirloom Decorating

I love to surround myself with things from the past. To me “heirloom” doesn’t necessarily mean something really old, because memories are always in the making, and displaying a family keepsake can be treasured whether it’s from last year or fifty years ago. It’s easy to tastefully decorate your home with family heirlooms. Why not […]

Budget Bathroom Makeover Ideas

I recently gave my bathroom a complete makeover. It was much easier than I expected, and only took a few days to complete. For less than $200 I gave my bathroom a completely new look that I love. The first thing I did was choose some paint. I started out with bare white walls. I […]

Floral Photos Brighten Spring and Summer Decor

Don’t you love the colors of spring and summer? Many flowers are in full bloom, delighting the senses with their beauty and fragrances. It always amazes me how quickly these seasons pass. Just a few short weeks ago our flowering cherry trees were in full bloom. I captured them as a backdrop for a photo […]