Thinking... Maternity AGAIN

The question I'm asking myself lately is...
When am I READY to get pregnant again???? hmmmm, it's a question only I can answer. 
I do know I want more kids, but the thought of getting pregnant again, isn't sounding too appealing to me. 

When I first started thinking about having kids, I had it all planned out. I was going to have 5 kids, get pregnant every 6 months after giving birth, and I'd get pregnant on the first try of course, what does ovulating have anything to do with it?  I'd have them all natural, no drugs.  I was going to have a girl, then a boy, then girl, boy, girl. They'd all be close together in age, I'd get the pregnancies over with fast, be a young mom, my babies would all sleep through the night in their own beds, I'd nurse them all for a year, they'd only eat organic food and NO sugar, potty training would be a sinch, I'd homeschool them all, and we'd just be one big ol' happy family. 
If only things could be so perfect. 
It took me 5 months to get pregnant with Lily, I lasted about 30 minutes of contractions before calmly requesting the epidural, or ANY sort of drug they had to offer. I was only able to nurse her for seven months. She never slept through the night OR in her own bed until she was 3. When she turned 6 months there was NO WAY IN H*** I was going to get pregnant again. She turned one, still not ready, turned 2, potty training was a disaster, even MORE not ready, turned 2 1/2, and FINALLY feeling somewhat  ready for the next baby. Took 7 months to get pregnant with Oliver, which I was totally OKAY with, since I was scared out of my mind, wondering how on earth I was going to handle having TWO kids. WHAT? That's insane, TWO kids? Delivery went fine, except the epidural stopped working just in time for me to start pushing out an almost 10 pound baby.
So here I am now, with two kids, somehow managing day by day. Oliver's sleeping through the night and in his crib. So do I feel ready????

Um, not at the moment, but my plan is to GET ready by the end of summer. 
So, there it is everyone!
Not sure how long it will take to get pregnant this time around, so that's why we decided to start trying a little sooner than last time.
So, since I'm going to be back in maternity clothes possibly this fall or winter, I thought I'd start looking into some cute clothes to mentally prepare myself for the 9 months of absolute BLISS :) :)
When you're pregnant there's nothing better than finding something cute AND comfortable to wear. AND GETTING TO USE A COUPON CODE IS EVEN BETTER!!!. Moody Mama's was kind enough to offer all my reader friends a coupon code, a 30% off discount. Use this code: MMDiscount, at Moody Mamas (

I thought these shirts were so cute and would be great baby shower gifts.

 Here's a little information copied from the site.

The Moody Mamas spring line of maternity clothes hits the virtual racks at Target and you don’t want to miss it—these fashionable new styles are sure to sell out!  With a devout following of hot Hollywood mamas that includes Heidi Klum, Jessica Alba, Tori Spelling and Bethenny Frankel, Moody Mamas’ colorful spring capsule collection  will make every expectant mom look as sexy and chic as our celebrity clients.  Each piece is inspired by the runway, from easy maxi dresses to adorable chiffon trim knit dresses. All of our styles are made from luxurious fabrics that give every Moody Mamas piece the feel of relaxing loungewear.  Start expanding your spring wardrobe today! The collection is limited in quantity, affordably priced from $39.99 - $49.99, and extends into plus sizes.  To shop the collection, click here to visit Target.

Diets Diets and MORE Diets!

There are literally millions of different diet and weight loss programs out there, which can be  pretty overwhelming. I've posted a small spreadsheet here of some of the most popular North American diets price comparison.
As you all know, I'm pretty passionate about the Isagenix Nutritional Cleansing system because of what it did for me. I found it pretty interesting when I came across this and they broke down the cost per pound.

I also have a book recommendation for you. I'm a HUGE fan of John Gray, the author of Men or From Mars Women are From Venus. He has this great book out called the Mars and Venus Diet and Exercise Solution. He talks about healthy brain chemistry being a major part of having a healthy relationship. He also recommends Isagenix in this book. Watch the youtube video below as he gives a short explanation of why he chose Isagenix.

FAB Friday

 I just wanted to refresh everyone's memory on FAB Friday and what it's all about. I hope to get this meme going a little, and want to explain a little more of what it's all about. Every Friday I've been featuring someone who's inspired me in some way, but I want you to know that the whole idea here is to feature a person, living or not, movie, tv show, book, place, blog, friend, family member, product, quote, ect, that INSPIRES you! Here is the button you can grab to add to your post if you'd like to play along. And don't forget to link up your blog posts here at the bottom. I will be sure and visit each and everyone of you!!!!

So to mix things up a bit, I would like to feature one of my FAVORITE and most inspiring books ever!!!  Standing For Something by Gordon B. Hinckley. This book was the first book I read when I began my mission preparation. Every word from this book spoke to me in a way I can't even describe. It seemed to be just what I needed at the time. I have not read the book again since, but as I was thinking about a book that most inspires me, this is the one that came to mind. So I searched through my small library of books and found it on the shelf, still good as new. I opened it up and began skimming through, trying to remember the lines that most stood out to me at the time. It's funny how books are. It seems that when you let some time pass, it becomes a whole new book with so much more inspiration you never noticed before. I would like to share with you a part of this book that really stood out to me NOW, in my current stage of life, a mom, craving education and inspiration more than ever.

"Reduced to its simplest definition, education is the training of the mind and the body. Education is the great conversion process under which abstract knowledge becomes useful and productive activity. It is something that need never stop. No matter how old we become, we can acquire knowledge and use it. We can gather wisdom and profit from it. We can grow and progress and improve and, in the process, strengthen the lives of those within our circle of influence. We can enrich our lives dramatically through the miracle of reading and exposure to the arts. The older I grow, the more I enjoy the words of thoughtful writers, ancient and modern. I savor that which they have learned and processed and recorded for others to read."

Don't forget to enter my giveaway, I'm going to keep it going for another week to make sure everyone has had a chance to win the anti age or acne clearing kit.

Wanna BE Debt FREE?

We all come from different financial backgrounds. Some grow up learning healthy spending habits, and others, like me, learn that SAVING..... isn’t an option. I learned that you work hard to make money, and SPEND it ALL as fast as possible. My dad was a very hard worker, and taught me well when it came to work ethics, but as far as spending habits......well, that's another story, and I'm about to tell you about it.

As soon as I hit 18 and graduated high school, I was anxious to set out for a whole new life of independence, with little education on finances. I moved out to Arizona with my best friend, and wanted to experience it all. Started school, got the apartment, furniture, new car, new clothes. Oh yah, I was livin it up….
On CREDIT! Teenagers should NOT be allowed to have credit cards, DANGEROUS combination.
My new FAVORITE movie in the whole world is Confessions of a Shopaholic. This movie is all too familiar for me. I put together a little clip of my favorite parts in the movie that best describes how naive I was at this age, it's freaky how much I can relate.
Credit cards, better known as "magic cards"............. stores "awakening a lust for things you never even knew you needed".............. and justifying spending, by labeling it as,

Okay, so back to my story about how I was livin it up.
Well, it wasn’t long until the credit card debt caught up to me, and I was paying minimum payents on multiple credit cards. I felt the weight of debt on my shoulders daily, causing me WAY too much stress.
I was always working two jobs to get caught up. I had my car payment, insurance, rent, food, gas, ect. But at that point it was too late. After only a year living on my own, I was in way over my head with debt exceeding $20,000. I had no choice but to quit school and move back home.
Completely clueless that paying the minimum payment on credit cards was a BAD thing....

I was thinking about serving an LDS mission, but one of the requirements was to be debt free. So, I sold my car, worked 2 jobs, and started taking the BUS everywhere. It was a tough lesson to learn, but eventually I got the debt paid off, HUGE relief, and I was ready for my mission.
Missions are a lot of work, with long exhausting days, but I enjoyed a financially stress free life. No bills to worry about, just a monthy budget to cover food and what ever else we NEEDED. It was such a simple life now when I look back.
So when I got home I thought, NOW I am ready in every way to take on life. I thought there was no way I was going to screw up again. I tried to keep things in perspective and only buy what I NEEDED like I learned on my mission. Pretty soon I found myself falling back into the same trap, and my WANTS became needs. I was lucky enough to get a job right away when I got home, so I immediately bought a car, got a cell phone and a credit card. I’m not sure how it happened AGAIN, but only 5 months after being home, my credit card debt was up to $5,000. Wasn’t quite as bad as before, but the stress of it was back full force. You’d think I would have learned my lesson the first time, right! Sometimes it takes a few times of screwing up before we get it through our heads. Luckily I met my husband at that point and he saved me from MYSELF. So, in other words, MARRY RICH :) haha, thanks honey for paying my debt for me. Unfortunately, my $5,000 of debt was all I had to bring to the table :)
“When we go into debt, we give away some of our precious, priceless agency and place ourselves in self-imposed servitude. We obligate our time, energy, and means to repay what we have borrowed- resources that could have been used to help ourselves, our families, and others…”
-Robert D. Hales

My husband was brought up learning much better spending habits than I ever did. Which in fact caused us to butt heads a lot in the beginning. My husband wants to save EVERYTHING, and I want to SPEND IT ALL. It took us a few years, but we’ve come to a happy medium. I’m much better at budgeting and saving, because I have a monthly budget. I now use a debit card, not a credit card, bounced a few checks here and there.
I still wonder why the bank clerk is so confused when I try paying my overdraft fee with a check from the same checking account :) .............hmmmmm.
I'm learning.
And as for Sean, he’s learning to SPEND a little and enjoy more, like go on vacations even if it costs money:), only if we HAVE the funds of course. I always tell him that he can be in charge of the saving, and I’ll be happy to take on the VERY tough responsibility of spending.
I’ve actually really learned to enjoy saving money any way I can. Not so I can stash it away in a savings account, hah, yeah right, but so I can SPEND more. Like I said, I leave that up to Sean :)
“We need to understand the consequences of buying on credit and not living within a budget. “
“ Meals prepared and eaten at home generally cost less, are healthier, and contribute to stronger relationships.”
-Julie B. Beck

Five Steps to financial freedom
First, pay tithing/donate.
Second, spend less than you earn.
Third, learn to save.
Fourth, teach children to follow your example.
-Joseph B. Wirthlin

Don't forget to enter my giveaway HERE. We're giving away a FREE acne clearing kit. To see my before and after pics, go HERE.
Enjoy Financial Freedom:

Home Decor Deals!!!

The other day I went to Hobby Lobby, and it is now my new favorite store!!! I love all this wrought iron stuff, and I usually shop at Rod Works or Tai Pan. Hobby Lobby had THE best deals. All this stuff I bought was 50% off. Each week they have different items on sale as well as a coupon you can use on any regular price item. Just click on the highlighted Hobby Lobby and that link will bring you directly to the weekly deals page.

I got these for $12 each

I got this lamp for $35

I got this for $35

These are my favorites! I got them for $6 each, and I bought a few other sets to put in different parts of the house. I really love the look, really adds a lot to a plain space.

Just wanted to share with you these awesome deals!!! All the stuff I bought is 50% off this week, and next week it will be something else. Be sure to go to the site I linked and print off your 40% off coupon, and find a location nearest you. You can even shop online which is nice. It's not always easy going to this kind of store with kids, so shopping online can be quite convenient for us moms.

Wordless Wednesday- Our Back Porch Mama

To play along, head over to Live and Love Out Loud.

House Update (2nd Edition)

First of all, I just wanted to let you all know I had an AMAZING mothers day. My daughter was just the sweetest, and so cute about this little surprise. She's been DYING to show me since the day she made it in school. She could hardly wait until mothers day, and even tried talking me into letting her give it to me early, she learns that from me :) I'm so bad at keeping a secret or pulling off a GOOD surprise.
If you haven't yet seen the Mothers Day video I made, watch it HERE.

Now for some more before and after pics of my house. This is the second edition, to see the first, click HERE. I thought I'd move right on to the outside of the house because I'm excited about my new outdoor furniture I got for mothers day.

Here's the house when we bought it.
And this is AFTER!
  • We had to get a new roof
  • added the brown shakes to accent the siding
  • stained the concrete and extended the driveway since we needed more parking
  • got a new gate with stone pillars
  • built a detached garage with an office for Sean above
  • added the stone siding along the bottom
unfortunately a lot of our big trees died soon after we moved in, so we had to take them down. We added a bunch of pine trees and some other kinds as well.

Here's a view of the driveway extension.
Here's a view of the new garage from the backyard.

These next two pictures were taken before we moved in, with all the big trees :( I miss them, it was so pretty.

View from the back, we added this stone patio with a fire pit. That's been fun for roasting marsh mellows.

From the back door looking out.

Our next project is to build a second level deck so this area will actually be covered providing better shade.

My new outdoor furniture!!!

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