Friday, January 22, 2016

Fashion Friday - Spring Jewelry! part 2

Let's talk about spring! I love spring! Actually my favorite part is the lack of snow, but the colors of spring come in a close second :-)

Last week, I introduced you to our first two trends for spring, Boho Beauty and Pop of Polish. Today, let's chat about the other two trends in our new spring jewelry, Modern Organics and Unforgettable Romantics.

This is sort of the opposite of Pop of Polish. Think toned down colors. Neutrals like browns, grays, and turquoise. Simple yet eye-catching pieces.

Down to Earth necklace

Emmie and Summer earrings

Inner Strength bracelet

Make Waves necklace

Nice & Easy ring
Sophia ring

Sweetness necklace

Natural Beauty necklace

And not to leave this trend out, check out the short video here featuring these awesome pieces!

This collection is by far my favorite! The rose gold is amazing. Add in the fun fuchsia colors and mixed metals, and I'm sold! But see for yourself!

Encourage wrap bracelet
Berry Bright necklace

Rose Factor watch

Rosie bracelets set

Sun-Kissed necklace

Sway necklace

Willow necklace
Camille necklace (much better in person. promise)

Here's the last trend video for this spring collection!

So, which trend do you like best out of all four?? Which piece do you like best?? 
Make sure you leave a comment, I'll be doing a drawing for a free piece of jewelry!! Drawing winner will be announced in one week

You can view the whole catalog at if you want

Thankful Thursday - 1/21

Always, there are things to be thankful for.

22. A (mostly) cleared off desk
23. Obeying God's calling to step up in leadership at bible study
24. Having the ability and resources to help friends when they need help
25. Smelling clean hands (hey, it means they got washed...with soap!)
26. Quiet Music
27. Loud Music
28. Math understood
29. Cookies. Choco-Cocoa cookies
30. Butterflies, tarantulas, and sea stars
31. Clean laundry put away
32. Sunshine melting snow and ice
33. Crazy jumpy children getting their wiggles out at the trampoline park
34. Date Night
35. White Chocolate Lemon Delight
36. Leftovers


PS Read One Thousand Gifts to understand the background, the hows, the whys of counting these graces.

What We're Learning Wednesday - Butterfly Pavilion!

This week we got to take a field trip to celebrate finishing Apologia Zoology 1: Flying Creatures! The last chapter was on class lepidoptera (aka butterflies) so what better place to go than the Butterfly Pavilion!

 I can't remember for sure, but I think it's been about 5 years since we I think this was Shane's first time. Unless my mom took them, which is possible because she's awesome like that.
Anyway, they had a great time! I made it all field-trip-like by having the older two draw a picture of an animal they saw and write the name of said animal in a field journal. 
Nate had to do at least one. He did one. A tiny one. Wrote the bare minimum and scampered off.
Kahlen had to do at least 3. She did 5. And colored them in with colored pencils. And wrote their scientific name and common name. And took pictures of the animal and the sign.
Different kids do different things :-)
We had a great time. My dad was able to come with us, which was great because Shane just wanted to run around and I wanted to read the signs and talk about how the animals we saw fit into what we had learned. 

It was a lovely day. There's a little nature path behind the building, so we went for a little walk after lunch before we went to back in.
Besides butterflies, they also have a room full of bugs and spiders plus another room where they got to dig for "worms" (really they were meal worms, which are beetle larvae) AND another room where they can touch a few sea invertebrates (sea stars and horseshoe crabs). 

Petting the hissing cockroaches
A trip to the butterfly pavilion is not complete without holding their tarantula, Rosie, which all three of them enjoyed very much, much to daddy's dismay.


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Talk about Tuesday Book Review - Truth-Stained Lies by Terri Blackstock

When truth doesn’t make sense, will lies prevail?
Cathy Cramer is a former lawyer and investigative blogger who writes commentary on high-profile homicides. When she finds a threatening note warning her that she’s about to experience the same kind of judgment and speculation that she dishes out in her blog, Cathy writes it off as mischief . . . until her brother’s wife is murdered and all the “facts” point to him. The killer has staged the crime to make the truth too far-fetched to believe. Working to solve the murder and clear her brother’s name, Cathy and her two sisters, Holly and Juliet, moonlight as part-time private investigators. Juliet, a stay-at-home mom of two boys, and Holly, a scattered ne’er-do-well who drives a taxi, put aside their fear to hunt down the real killer.
Stakes rise when their brother’s grieving five-year-old son is kidnapped. As police focus on the wrong set of clues, the three sisters and their battered detective friend are the only hope for solving this bizarre crime, saving the child, and freeing their brother.

It's been awhile since I read this book, but I never got around to writing my review about it.

What can I say? I love all of Terri Blackstock's books, and this is no exception!
A few things I enjoy about her writing: the books are suspenseful, easy to read, and well thought out.
This is book one in a trilogy, which I also enjoy because it means the story keeps going.

This book in particular has an excellent balance of all the characters, with good family dynamics and a bit of romance thrown in there. If you have a hard time following a lot of characters, then you might not like this one, but I thought it was well written and a fun read.

If you like suspense books, then this is one I would definitely recommend!


Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from NetGalley as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
Some links are affiliate links, which I may receive a small compensation from in connection with their affiliate program.

Menu Plan Monday - January 18th

Monday came and Monday went. We had a long and strange weekend thanks to a dear friend needing to go to the ER for appendicitis. Very glad we were able to help but it threw things off a bit.

Last week I made all 5 meals on the menu, amazing!! Kahlen helped me with the Guiltless Fettuccine Alfredo with chicken instead of the Cheeseburger Pies that I thought she would want to help with, but I'm glad for that because it means she's learning new recipes. The Ranch Cheddar Burgers set off the smoke alarm. I think they do that every time, which would maybe suggest I should modify the recipe ;-)

So, here's what we'll be eating. I try to balance out types of food, but given our variable schedule, I no longer try to plan for a certain type of food on certain nights of the week.

Monday - Leftovers. We had pizza from Papa Murphys on Sunday, and still had other stuff in the fridge too.

Tuesday - Chicken Tacos. Just the basic meat, beans, cheese, sour cream in a tortilla kind. With Tabasco for hubby and the little one.

Wednesday - Polish Pierogies from the freezer for the kids. We're going on a date!

Thursday -  Basic Casserole (It's Kahlen's turn to cook again) 

Friday - Shepherd's Pie only without the sweet potatoes this time

Saturday - YOYO (You're On Your Own) By this time in the week, I'm all done cooking, not to mention the fridge is usually stuffed full of bits of leftovers :-)

I've been making about 4 out of the 6 meals I plan in a week, so we'll see which ones get ditched as the week goes. 

So, what are you making this week? Anything I should "steal" from you?? Go check out some more great ideas at I'm An Organizing Junkie!


Friday, January 15, 2016

Fashion Friday - Spring Jewelry! Part one

This week has been crazy in the evenings...when I usually blog! Hey, it takes awhile to get into a solid routine, right??

Today I want to share with you some awesome new jewelry and the trends they represent. As I mentioned last week, I went to our regional rally last Saturday. The day was full of training, inspiration, and NEW JEWELRY! So I want to share a bit of that with you!

A quick note about Premier Designs...

Another reason why I love Premier Designs!:
While I had a great time learning about the new jewelry at our conference, what I really loved about the day was being refreshed in Premier's Philosophy, Purpose, and Plan. These aren't just things we say, these are things we really mean. From the top all the way to the newest jeweler. I love this company! They're in to their second generation of leadership, and things are NOT changing, I love it!

Okay, back to jewelry.
Our spring collection features 31 new pieces in four hot trends. I'm going to share two of the trends this week and the other two next week.

Boho Beauty is our first trend!
This collection features rich pallets, southwest-inspired patterns, and flowing layers. 
Comfy Cozy bracelet
Camile earrings
New Neutrals necklace

Fast Forward bracelet set
Fast Forward necklace

Lively necklace

Spiffy bracelet

Spring Break necklace

Check out this short video showing the pieces in this trend

The second trend is Pop of Polish. Think fun spring colors! Mixed metals! Lacy designs!
Fine Art necklace

Sabrina earrings

In The Loop earrings

It's Electric necklace

Three's Company bangle bracelets
Here's another short video for you featuring this trend

So, which trend do you like better?? Which piece do you like best?? 
Make sure you leave a comment, I'll be doing a drawing for a free piece of jewelry!!

You can view the whole catalog at if you want