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stress eatingSomeone very wise told me that I stress eat. So I thought about it…. And I went back through my food/exercise log. I spent a lot of time thinking about this. Stress eating is a real thing, not an excuse.

Some people drink a beer when they’re stressed out…I eat. Or at least, I used to. Let me back up for a minute.

What Does Stress Eating Look Like?

 

  • Do you ever realize that you’ve demolished an entire bag of snacks? Or the whole batch of cookies?
  • Do you eat while you watch television?
  • Do you remember actually being hungry before you eat?
  • Do you find that you eat more when you are angry? Or frustrated? How about when you’re sad?
  • Do you eat and eat and eat…and still end up “hungry”? Almost like food isn’t satisfying?

I stress eat. For me, I have found that I tend to stress eat when I’m sad or overwhelmed. Thankfully, I clean when I’m angry…so that’s a relief! (No, not really.) most of us have a lot of stressors in our lives: school, home, work, kids, partners, parents, grandparents, friends, illness…the list goes on…and on…and on.

What’s On Your Plate?

 

stress eatingMost of us are stress magnets. At least, we think we are. I know that I allow myself to be. I hate having a messy house, and I schedule my day…every day.

Some days I feel like our doormat says: STRESS WELCOME. Of course, I realize that it doesn’t. But you get the idea. In the past (and currently, although I’m trying to change that), I have dealt with stress by eating.

Anything and everything. Chocolate, yogurt, fruit…you name it. As long as my hand was picking up food and shoveling it into my mouth, I didn’t care. It honestly just didn’t matter. Now that I’m on a mission to learn my body, and take good care of it, I really need to change. NOW. The big question is: HOW?

Actually, I would venture to ask why.

why moms stress eatWhy Do We Stress Eat?

 

There are a lot of theories out there, but here’s the gist:

  1. Cortisol. It’s the stress hormone…and it makes you hungry. Fun times, right?
  2. Habit. As a kid, did you have a bowl of ice cream when you were down and out? Did your parents take you to the diner to cheer you up?
  3. Distraction. Something bother you? Just eat your way out! (Hint: this is my problem!)
  4. Fun. You go to the movies and get a popcorn…and a soda…and a candy bar…and you have to eat it all, right? Or you go out to a restaurant…and have appetizers, drinks, dinner, and dessert. Because it’s all about good times…until your pants don’t fit.
  5. No time. When did you eat last? Do you really need the double double burger? Or is it just convenient?
  6. Memories. My mom makes KILLER chocolate chip cookies. And when I’m sad, I want chocolate chip cookies-my mom’s. Coincidence? Probably not. Conditioning? Far more likely. I even find myself rewarding Smalls with a shake or cookie for a good day at clinic…oops! That needs to change!

How Can We Change?

 

Here’s what I’ve found: I need to find other ways to deal with my stress. I’m guessing that you do, too. What a simple solution…but it’s not really. But if you really want to change, you can…and so can I. What concerns me most is that my children are learning their behavior from me.

It’s important to me as a parent that I am a good role model, and that I show them how to be healthy. It’s no longer acceptable to me to just follow the “do as I say, not as I do” mantra.

stress eatingPay Attention

The first thing I promised myself was that I was going to pay attention to what I was putting in my mouth-and why it was going in my mouth. Am I genuinely hungry? Do I really need this? Would a walk or a workout video be a better option? Should I eat an apple instead?

If we are logging our food, we are far more likely to realize when we begin that path toward emotional or stress eating. Are you simply eating to stay awake? (I know I’m guilty of this one! What mom isn’t?!)

I really enjoy using MyFitnessPal to keep track of my food and exercise. It keeps me accountable, and it’s free. Free is good!

Pause For A Minute

If you feel like you might not need that second bowl of cereal, then take a step back. Really think about it. Go do something-laundry, a walk, squats, play with your babies…just try something else. If after a reasonable amount of time (No, not a minute!) you still want that bowl of cereal, then have it!

I’m sure that you will find times when you are genuinely hungry, but many times, you may not be.

Drink More Water

This one is paramount. After all, 66% of your body is water. Are you drinking enough water? Do you keep track? If not, you should. The recommendation is 8 8-oz glasses of water a day, which 64 oz. For me, I really need twice that to feel hydrated and well. Yes, you can drink too much water, but you would have to drink a lot more than 120 oz.

Talk About It

Untitled-design-12Want to eat all of those brownies? Is something bothering you? Find another emotional outlet. Mine is blogging (HI!). What’s yours? Do you need to talk? Call your mom, your bestie, or talk to your spouse. What about a cute journal? Or keeping a diary?

Get Involved

If you’ve got things to do, you’re less likely to eat. So get out there. Join a book club, or a mom’s group. Find a MOPS meeting near you. Go to church. Read a good book…or a lot of awesome books. Garden. Play a board game, or solitaire, even. Start a memory book for your kids. Just do something.

Exercise! Walk to a park. Do some yoga. Find a good workout video that you can squeeze into your day.

Find other ways to engage your time, and maybe you will discover, as I have, that you aren’t really hungry all the time after all.

Don’t Give Up

 

Changes aren’t going to happen overnight. You’re going to have a day where you curse yourself for buying everything to make Italian Cream Cake (Oops-but it was delicious!), or you will wish that you’d not purchased that large bag of pretzels that is now in the trash…. But as time goes on, it gets easier. If you need to, make a list of alternatives to stress eating and tape it to your fridge.

Be sure to include things that you genuinely enjoy! Or try drinking a glass of water before each meal or snack. It’s possible that you’re just thirsty, after all.

Believe me when I say that you’re not alone. I’m right there with you, today especially. Being a mom is not easy, but we need to find  other ways to spend our time. At least I do. Okay. Time to go workout.

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make mother's day rockDo you realize that Mother’s Day is just a few short weeks away? Are you ready? No? Don’t worry. I’ve got your gift game covered.

I know, I know. I’m awesome. 

*pats self on back*

No, really. I’m stoked about today’s post because I have some awesome suggestions for y’all…er, for your children (a.k.a. hubby). In fact, save yourself some trouble and just send him this post, or bookmark it…or join my newsletter and forward it to him.

Now you will not have to live in fear of getting an itchy men’s XXL sweater. Yes, that really happened to me. Because apparently I’m extremely *ahem* tall. That’s the word I was looking for. Most of the time, I’m all about simple gifts, but we worked hard for at least 9 months to bring our children into this world.

We should be celebrated. Just sayin’. And better yet, there’s something for everyone. Seriously!

 

Stainless Steelreusable-water-bottle Waterbottle

 

If you’re like me, you drink a LOT of water. I have a bit of a water bottle hoarding problem love stainless steel water bottles, don’t you? I had a glass water bottle that I loved…for a few days. Then I dropped it on the tile. Oops. I’ve tried BPA-free plastic bottles, but I seem to break those as well. Sure, my Sigg is pretty banged up…but that’s why it’s made of stainless steel.

So it can take being dropped, run over, kicked…yeah. I’m hard on my water bottles. That’s probably why I have a whole cupboard full of them. Even the boys have their own bottles.

 

A Blender

 

Trust me on this one. I adore my high speed blender. It’s awesome for so many things…like smoothies. And I promise that you’ll love it and won’t have a Father Of The Bride moment. Let’s see…what do I use my blender for…smoothies, baby food, soups, juicing, ice cream, making popsicles…the list goes on.

I love my blender. Seriously. LOVE.MY.BLENDER. Get yourself one.

 

fitbitFitBit

 

Nothing says “you are awesome” like an activity tracker…amirite? But seriously y’all. I adore my FitBit. Sure there are a lot of activity trackers out there (and I’ve tried a fair share!), but there’s just something about the FitBit that keeps me coming back.

Although there were tracking issues with previous models (I had to set my Flex to ridiculously high step tracking goals to compensate for rocking The Baby…really.), I’ve tried quite a few activity trackers…and at the end of the day, FitBit wins. I really love the Charge HR, which not only does your activity and sleep, but also tracks your heart rate. That’s right.

It’s a HEART RATE MONITOR without that annoying band strapped around your chest. Pretty awesome. Now, it’s not 100% accurate all the time (when I compared it to my chest strap monitor, it varied 5-10 BPM), but I love the simplicity and comfort (those chest straps aren’t exactly designed for all day wear). I also love that I showered with it on and it’s still going. Yup. It’s a winner.

 

eco_yoga_packageYoga Gear

 

Maybe it’s because I live in yoga pants, but I’m rather fond of yoga gear and would be over the moon to receive more for Mother’s Day. My current new obsessions are Silk Eye Pillows (awesome for meditation and just relaxation in general!).

I also have my eye on Barefoot Yoga’s eco yoga package, which includes:

  • A Hybrid Eco Mat (made with no toxic chemicals)
  • A pair of Eco Yoga Blocks (sustainable wood, cork or non-toxic foam)
  • A colorful Mexican Blanket (made of recycled yarn)

 

Spartan Race

 

This is definitely on spartan racemy bucket list! I want to run a Spartan Race (or other obstacle course). I’m working to get there, but for now, I’ll dream. If you are in amazing shape, this would be such a fun gift! Just think, you can get muddy, sweaty, and you have to sign a waiver. Yup. It’s that kind of race.

If you’re itching to do an obstacle course, why not just go all out.

AND, if you do sign up for a Reebok Spartan Race, why not get 10% off, Use Code: FINISH10 – Sign Up Now!

 

ECO_Adventure_Kit__58887.1424125890.500.750Go On A Picnic

 

One of my favorite things to do in the spring is go on long walks. Hikes don’t happen very often here because Houston is pretty flat. But I digress. We have a ton of EcoLunchboxes that we pack anytime we go on a longer trek. It’s a nice way to have a picnic without a lot of waste, and they fit nicely into our backpack or below the stroller if we are close to home.

puravida-secretgarden-2TFair-Trade Jewelry

 

I know, I know. But this jewelry is different. These bracelets are WATERPROOF. That means that you can workout without taking it off. Made in Coasta Rica with fair trade practices, you can feel good about wearing them. Besides, they colors in these PuraVida bracelets are really pretty.

And whether you need the set (ME!) or want just one, you won’t have to worry about them getting ruined during your sweat session, OR if you forget to take them off in the locker room.

Because you know it’s happened…no? Just me. Okay, then.

 

M43861_01New Shoes

 

What woman doesn’t love shoes? I recently had to get new running shoes. You know how it goes. I’ve tried a lot of shoes (A.LOT.OF.SHOES), and I’m totally in love with my Reeboks. I’d been eyeing their ZigTech for awhile-I mean…it’s like zig zag for you shoes! So when I needed new kicks, I grabbed a pair. HOLY. COW.

Though I kinda feel like I’m in an 80s movie while I wog (that’s walk/jog for you speedsters), I’m really digging the supportive cushion. I like how the midsole is a bit higher than my Pearl Izumis (another fave of mine), and my shins feel so much better because of it (at least, I think that’s the reason!).

 

Workout Planner

 

Y’all know I’m nuts about my planners (just wait until next month…I’m going to go full on certifiable as I await upcoming releases from some of the big planning companies!)…and I was really excited to see that Inkwell came out with the BeWell, which is a 12-week fitness tracker. It’s got a lot of bang for your buck, including goal setting a10785012_671758769603265_782286977_nnd progress tracking, two of my favorite features.

I’ve also been loving the Blogilates Fit Journal 2.0. It’s also 12 weeks of fitness tracking, but it includes a little spin (which I love). It comes with a gel pen (IN PINK!), grocery list pages for each week, detailed measurement pages and even a place for your “before” and “after” photos. It’s also a wee bit less expensive than the BeWell.

If you’re going for big bonus points, consider an Erin Condren Life Planner (use this link to save $10 off your first order!), or even a gift certificate so that she can get the new planner when it comes out this summer (*hint, hint, Ish!).

 

ultimate bundleThe Ultimate Homemaking Bundle

 

I love to read. Let me say that again: I LOVE TO READ. Got it? Good. I also have this “problem” with constantly needing a new book.

Maybe I need to clarify. I read (on average) 5-8 books a week. Y’all. That gets expensive! Especially when you consider the going price of most eBooks, which is around $8.00! EIGHT. DOLLARS. Let that sink in for a minute.

Did you do the math? I know. It’s sickening. BUT.

Okay, mama. Stop reading and give the computer/phone/tablet to your partner.

NOW, please. This is top secret. You’ll get it back in just a second, okay?

*FOR YOUR PARTNER’S EYES ONLY*

Alright, so here’s the super-secret deal. My mommy counterparts would be pretty upset if they knew I was telling you this, but if you play your cards right, you could feasibly be totally SET UP for gift giving for the rest of the year with this one purchase.

Here’s what you do: 

1. Purchase the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle for less than $30.00 right nowultimate bundle homemaking

2. You’ve got it? Awesome. Now HIDE IT. Create a file for your downloads with the words “cars” “man cave” or “hair loss”. 

3. Make sure that you go and claim your bonuses. RIGHT NOW. I know she’s looking at you and tapping her toe, so hurry. GO!

4. Okay. Now you’ve got $300 in bonuses…er, gifts ready for giving.

5. Think about what your beloved has been stressed about lately. How can you help? Remember that you have A YEAR to download and use all of the content contained in the Bundle. That covers you for Mother’s Day, her Birthday, and just about every other holiday, PLUS any days when you need to smooth things over. 

6. Give some of the books, or the Craftsy class (or both! GO CRAZY!) for Mother’s Day. You’re a winner. GO YOU! 

Okay…time to give her back this device. I’ll wait….

Hi, again! Sorry about that. Okay. This is an amazing, amazing deal. SO. If you it, make sure you grab it RIGHT NOW (why are you still here??), because as of the 27th, it’s GONE. Still not sure? Read more about exactly what’s included in The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle and see if it’s right for you.

 

Young Living Essential Oils

 

everyday-oils

I’d be remiss if I didn’t include oils here! I use YLEOs for everything from colds to muscle soreness (and they even help Ish to not snore). I fell in love with essential oils over two years ago, but didn’t discover Young Living until about 18 months ago. HOLY. SMOKES.

I wish I’d found them sooner. I wish I’d asked for the Premium Starter Kit right away. I wish, I wish, I wish. I could have kicked my allergy meds years ago. YEARS!

 

Okay, fine. There are 12. I can’t leave my expectant mamas out!

 

The Milestone MarkerThe Milestone Marker

 

I don’t know about you, but I had the best intentions for creating a baby book for both of my boys. The key word here is intentions. Yeah…because it didn’t happen. I’m ashamed to admit that I actually put most of Smalls’ milestones on the print outs from his doctor’s office.

With The Baby, I promised myself I’d make some kind of effort. And then one of my dear friends Heather (she runs Incredible Infant, if you haven’t checked it out, you should!) created The Milestone Marker. Holy WOW. This awesome book saved my bacon.

Not only does it contain plenty of space to record all of the important milestones, but it also includes tips, tricks, and even a few sleep tidbits! You really should give it a try.

 

 

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8 eco-friendly workout tips

It’s Spring. FINALLY. I know that for a lot of you, you’re still not quite ready to get outside, but soon it will warm up…at least I hope so, for your sake. It’s gorgeous here, and I’ve been working hard to make more of my fitness regime “green”.

You know, for the planet.

And because we all know I’m a sucker for fun fitness gear.

 

Get Outside

 

It’s the time of year that you should be using your treadmill or elliptical to hang the laundry. Save some electricity and get outside with me.

With the days warming up, it’s time for to move my workouts outdoors…but how to do that with 2 little kids? Well…here’s a few things that have been working for me:

  • Put the kids in the stroller and wog (okay, okay, walk) around the neighborhood.
  • Head to a local park and use the playground as your own personal training ground.
  • Grab your yoga mat and go outside and let the kids play in the grass while you practice your sun salutations…in the sun.
  • Play soccer in the front yard.

 

Dust Off Your Bike

 

Do you live close enough that you can bike to work? Or maybe you just need to put the kids in the bike trailer and go for a ride. Heck, you could even bike to the gym if you really wanted to!

 

Press Play

 

Instead of driving to the gym, why not put a DVD in? You could even take your phone or laptop outside with one of my free barre workouts.

You can easily get your yoga on, do a quick WOD, or even do some interval training and call it a nice sweaty day.

organic yoga pantsInvest In Earth-Friendly Workout Clothes

 

Look for workout gear made by companies that use sustainable production practices and support the environment. Barefoot Yoga Co., Patagonia, REI, Lululemon, Nike, and even Reebok are good places to start!

Lots of companies are getting in on the “green” scene-so look not only for sustainable, but also recycled materials and even organic options.

 

Fall In Love With A Reusable Water Bottle

 

This is one of my favorite things. Seriously. I adore my Sigg. Even Smalls and The Baby have their own. I’m still working to get Ish to drink more water (insert sigh here). Look for a water bottle that is either stainless or created with recycled materials and you’ll be good to go!

Just a little FYI-I prefer stainless because I’m a klutz. I constantly drop my water bottle…and I’ve found (through trial and error) that a Sigg stainless is the only way my water bottles survive. Yup. I’m that bad.

 

Use Eco-Friendly Gear

 

If you’re in the hunt for new workout gear, take a bit and do some research. Gaiam makes some awesome eco-friendly products, and I love Barefoot Yoga Co. Jade makes awesome natural rubber yoga mats. Brooks came out with a biodegradable running shoe.  You can also check out Craigslist or your local B/S/T pages for gently used workout gear.

I’ve even found some great equipment at Salvation Army. Even though your find may not be outright eco-friendly, you’ll be giving it new life, which is half the battle, right?

Look For Natural Fibers

 

More and more frequently, companies are creating awesome products using natural fibers such as bamboo.

You can even go a step further and go organic with your workout gear. Pretty cool, if you ask me. You can find some great organic products like towels, yoga mats, and clothes.

 

Recycle

 

Done with your running shoes? Save them from the landfill and send them in to Nike’s Reuse-A-Shoe program. The old soles are ground up to create awesome playspaces. From playgrounds to tracks, and even some basketball courts. Pretty awesome, in my opinion.

If you’d like to do even more good, check out Soles4Souls, a program that is doing its part to recycle gently used shoes and help those in poverty.

Why not green your whole life while you’re at it?

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Do you sometimes feel like you’re a zookeeper? Maybe you feel this way all.the.time?

ultimate bundleI get it. I’m sure you’ve heard “not my circus, not my monkeys”…except this is your circus. And if you’re like me, you’re the “ring mommy”. And what a job it is!

I didn’t have illusions of glamor, but all the laundry, diapers, stretch marks, weight gain, no showers, constant meal prep, searching for good whole food recipes, not to mention finding time for me…

…and I run my own little business from home (and that is a dream of yours, get excited, because there are books in this bundle to help you!). Balancing it all is challenging, and sometimes it feels downright impossible.

And that’s why Erin and Stephanie created the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle… because as fulfilling as it is, homemaking is hard work and it doesn’t come easily, at least, not for me. I needed help to get my life together, and I cannot tell y’all how much these e-books have helped me.

I Struggle, Do You?

 

Y’all. I struggle to find enough time. I struggle to get it all done. And I struggle to take care of myself.

BUT. Thankfully, I know when I need help. The sheer amount of content here has been curated specifically to  help you:

  • increase productivity,  
  • strengthen your relationships,
  • prepare quick meals that use WHOLE foods,
  • get organized,
  • find more time,
  • and even make money (legitimately, of course). 

These e-books provide proven, simple, and effective tools that can help you reclaim some sanity. Seriously!  The authors are fellow bloggers who are funny, inspirational, and resourceful…and more importantly, they’ve been where you are.

BUT … is the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle right for you?

I’m telling you-this is a complete library of carefully selected eBooks, eCourses, audios, online conferences, and printable packs designed to help you turn your house into a home and regain (at least some of) your sanity.

Sure, you may not work from home (yet), but what about finding time to do that workout, or go on that date? Or have you been fantasizing about organizing your time? This Bundle handles all of that … without being overwhelming.

ultimate bundle homemaking

This is a  a complete library of 99 eBooks and eCourses to help you grow and improve your productivity, home, and your family.

There’s NO SUCH THING As “Too Many Books.”

 

Let me ask you a semi-serious question:

Have you ever gone to a carnival…or the gym (see what I did there?!)… and then been disappointed you couldn’t do each and every thing?

Of course not!

Of course there’s that moment of excitement when you arrive…but soon you’re wondering…where do I start?

And that’s exactly why this Bundle rocks. Because you will start somewhere. Where depends on you, of course.

 

Is the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle worth it?

 

Ultimate: Maximum; decisive; conclusive. The best or most extreme of its kind.

In a word… I believe it is (or I wouldn’t be writing about it, would I?)!

When they were putting this Bundle together, they were striving to answer questions, and provide tried techniques. And what they ended up with was possibly the very best homemaking resource anywhere.

I cannot imagine the hours they poured into curating this just for me (and you, too).They dug through hundreds of blog and webpages, and connected with dozens of authors and instructors who are authorities in their field.

What they came up with is awesome and inspiring. They’ve put together what equates to an entire library that you can use to streamline your life:

  • 76 eBooks
  • 6 eCourses
  • 1 audio download
  • 2 online conferences, and
  • 14 printable packs

For less than $30, you can buy your own bundle. So you get 76 eBooks, 6 eCourses, the audio download, 2 online conferences, and 14 printable packs…which is a value of $984.74…plus the bonuses.  That’s 99 carefully selected resources designed to help you improve your home and life worth $1,290.00. 

ultimate bundle buy box

 

motionmailapp.com

What’s Included In The eBook Library?

 

Self-Care

  • Simply Dressed ($6.99)
  • Living Green ($9.99)
  • How Do I Get It All Done? ($5.00)
  • Be Happy ($7.95)
  • 25 Days To A Happier Home ($9.99)
  • 10 Things You Need To Know About Essential Oils BEFORE You Buy ($4.95)

Cleaning

DIY & Homemade

  • That Works For Me! ($8.99)
  • My Buttered Life ($5.00)
  • Lotions, Potions, Salves, & Sprays ($6.99)
  • Handmade Walls ($9.95)

Organizing

Planners & Printables

Finances

  • How To Save Money ($5.99)
  • Hope ($4.99)
  • Build A Budget That Works ($2.99)
  • Become A Frugalista ($2.99)

Working From Home

Cookbooks

Meal Planning

Pregnancy

  • Why Does My Breastmilk Taste Bad? ($9.99)
  • Healthy Pregnancy ($15.00)
  • The Pregnancy Companion ($14.99)
  • The Baby Companion ($14.99)
  • Early Potty Teaching ($3.99)
  • Cloth Diapers ($5.99)

Motherhood

  • The Woven Heart ($8.00)
  • The Steady Mom’s Freedom Guide ($2.99)
  • The Heart Of Simplicity ($9.99)
  • On The Road To Joyful Motherhood ($7.00)
  • My Practices Of Mothering ($2.99)
  • From Grouchy To Great ($4.99)

Homeschooling

Marriage

  • Worth The Fight ($4.99)
  • The Connection Principle ($3.99)
  • My Beloved & My Friend ($10.00)
  • Love Your Husband Love Yourself ($4.99)
  • 50 Frugal Dates ($2.99)

Holidays

Faith

Audio & eCourses

What Are The Homemaking Bundle Bonus Offers? ($350 Value!)

 

Y’all. These are amazingly generous, inspiring gifts donated by companies that understand you.

  1. You get to choose 1 FREE Online Class from Craftsy (Select from 24 of Their Most Popular Classes – Up to $60 Value)
  2. 1 FREE Kids Discovery Box from Green Kid Crafts ($19.95 Value)
  3. FREE $15 Credit to Hope Ink PLUS 2 FREE 8×10 Art Prints ($71 Value)
  4. FREE 90-Day “Good Deal” Subscription to She Plans Dinner ($15 Value)
  5. Choose 1 FREE Stylish Spring Scarf from Deborah & Co. ($20 Value)
  6. FREE $80 Healthy Moving Class Credit ($80 Value)
  7. FREE 90-Day Pro Membership to ListPlanIt ($30 Value)
  8. FREE 65 Tyndale Rewards Points to Be Used for a FREE Book or Towards Any Book of Your Choice ($15 Value)

motionmailapp.com

 

The Fine Print

 

  • There’s a 30-Day Money-Back Guarantee. So, if for any reason, you decide that the Ultimate Homemaking Bundle is not for you, then please send an email to customerservice@Ultimate-Bundles.com and they will refund 100% of your investment. No questions asked.
  • Time is running out! The Ultimate Homemaking Bundle will only be available from 8:00 a.m. EST on Monday, April 20 until 11:59 p.m. EST on Monday, April 27.
  • Be sure to read the fine print about this bundle.
  • Still have questions? Find the most frequently asked questions here.

 

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Earlier this week, I talked Dirty dishes piled in kitchen sink, close-up
about how I realized I was fast becoming the dreaded martyr mom. Sure, I wear the Mombie badge with pride…but since The Baby has started sleeping, I’ve had some time to work on, well, me!

Let me tell you, it’s been eye opening. I love to organize, make lists, and I even like to clean…at least most of the time. But the world kind of gets put up on its edge when you add another kid. Especially if your preschooler was fairly independent…or if they have been battling a life-threatening illness.

But I digress. 

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching, and because I’m a die-hard bibliophile, I’ve been reading a lot of books. And a few have really helped to ground me and give me the inspiration that I know I needed to make some major changes.

What I Needed Was A U-Turn

 

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I was tired of getting behind on laundry. And don’t even get me started on the state of the sink…or the fact that making dinner literally made me panic. Seriously. I had two options: let my stress drown me…or find a way to overcome it.

I have an addition to my Kindle…Ish teases me that it’s the worst invention ever because I spend so much time reading (I still love books…but I don’t like how my children rip the pages. Maybe when they’re older…). And lately, he’s right. I started by listing the things that were stressing me out:

  • Laundry
  • Dishes
  • Meals
  • Planning dinner
  • TIME
  • Taking care of myself
  • Taking care of my kids
  • Taking care of my house

…obviously I was a tad bit overwhelmed.

Can you relate?

 

I think that every mom has been there at one time or another…but when you’re mired down in the “stuff” you don’t think about that. If you’re anything like me, you just look around and lament at your lack of homemaking skills: What happened? I used to have a handle on this! This is NOT me. 

And then you pick yourself up and start to problem solve…for me, that means I went on the hunt for solid advice from books…prefThinkstockPhotos-504402113erably short books that catered to my specific problems. My first problem? Dinner.

I figured that if I could figure that out, I’d be well on my way back to sanity. We all have to start somewhere, right?

I have found (through much trial and error) that I prefer freezer meals…more specifically freezer crockpot meals. All I want to do is de-thaw and dump it in.

I’m not into any more work than is absolutely necessary (you’ll find out why in a minute). As I looked, I found that there were quite a few awesome books out there, written by moms just like me…who had been there. Not someone who just wanted to spout advice about something they know nothing about.

I Found A Solution

 

Well…I actually found 9 of them. Yeah, I know. 9 books? I promise you, they’re worth the read!

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No Cook Freezer Meals by Kelly McNelis ($5.99)

Oh my goodness, I adore this book! No Cook Freezer Meals doesn’t require any cooking ahead of time. Seriously. You just dump in your ingredients and freeze!

I love the done-for-you grocery list for every single recipe inside, along with nutritional information (I am trying to be healthy!). If you want, you can also print the included freezer meal labels, or the freezer inventory sheet.

 

How Do I Get It All Done by Beth Cranford ($5.00)
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This book resonated with me…it’s like I could have written it myself. Although I’m glad I didn’t because she had it all figured out for me!

Beth is a mom who was tired of working all day and having no time to spend with family. And while she admits that some days will be tougher than others, she shares some awesome strategies and systems to help you keep your head above water.

I also enjoyed that she went even deeper-addressing what we’re supposed to be doing with this whole motherhood thing.

 

Simply Dressed by Victoria Osborn ($6.99)SimplyDressed

If you live in yoga pants (GUILTY!), you must read this book. As soon as possible. If you’re tired of feeling frumpy, dumpy, and just blah…yeah. Read this book.

Victoria will help you find your own style inspiration, and then get to cleaning out your closet, piece-by-piece, to create outfits that you actually want to wear.

Sure, I’ll never give up my yoga pants, but I definitely feel better about myself now!

 

 One Bite At A Time by Tsh Oxenreider ($8.00)

one biteOne Bite at a Time: 52 Projects for Making Life Simpler is THE simple living handbook. I dream of simple…in reality, I’m not so good at it. Sure, I am an organizing fool. But it seems like simple is hard. At least for me.

In fact, I think that it’s just downright odd that we all make “simple living” so darn complicated. I adore this book because Tsh gave me permission to focus on just one thing at a time, until you’ve got that task down – and then you can move on to the next one.

It’s all broken down in a one-at-a-time, take-a-breath format, for you to tackle at your own comfortable pace. You know what you should do, and if you’re like me, you just need a handbook.

 

Be Happy by Kimberlee Stokes ($7.95)

BeHappyOH GOODNESS. Where do I start with this one?

I stumbled upon this gem in the throes of postpartum depression. Not a fun time for me. Not at all. I was so tired…all.the.time. and motivation? Sure. Not really. Actually, I just wanted to sleep.

Be Happy is filled with awesomely easy ideas to help you become the person that you want to be. For me, that meant passionate and happy. I’m getting there one step at a time.

I love how awesome I’ve been feeling since starting the ideas in this book (you can print it and use it to journal, too!)!

 

From Grouchy To Great by Ruth Schwenk ($4.00)

FromGrouchyToGreat2-225x300It’s no secret that being a mom is not easy. But sometimes we can really allow our emotions to get the best of us:

Why am I so cranky? How can I control my emotions so I can see the joy?

This e-book is filled with practical ideas and heartfelt responses to those questions. She doesn’t patronize, and it’s a great read!

This is a ninety-four-page guide to help you through our emotions. Grab a journal and study it solo, or go through it with some girlfriends (my preferred method)!

 

Project Organize Your ENTIRE Life by Stephanie Morgan ($14.98)

ProjectOrganizeYourEntireLife-225x300This Quick Start Guide eBook, along with the 2015 daily/weekly/monthly planners, cleaning schedules, meal planners are all freaking awesome. Like, I have them all, y’all.

This gal gets it. She knows how busy you are. The goal of all of this is not to have to learn a whole new system but simply to help you streamline your everyday tasks. And OH BOY did it help me!

And you know what? It’s presented in a cute, colorful format. So it’s not a chore to…well…do a chore! (See what I did there?)

 

50 Frugal Dates by Jenny Martin ($2.99)

50FrugalDates-225x300It and I have been struggling to find good date ideas that don’t cost more than our weekly grocery budget. Jenny points out that dating shouldn’t stop on your wedding day, and she’s absolutely right.

This book is full of easy and affordable ideas for weekly date nights. She offers suggestions about saving money on babysitting, going away for a night, and you know what? It’s great advice!

Start a new tradition of weekly date nights and watch your marriage grow stronger each week! I can’t tell you how much better our relationship has been since we’ve implemented a date night each week (even if we don’t leave the house)!

 

Paperless Home Organization by Mystie Winckler ($4.99)

PaperlessHomeOrganization-225x300Paperless Home Organization will walk you step-by-step through using your gadgets (we all know how much I love a good gadget!) to organize your life.

You have the technology, so why not put it to work for you? I hate clutter. Y’all know this. It drives me absolutely insane. It makes me cranky just thinking about it.

And paper clutter is the worst kind of clutter because I’m pretty sure it reproduces while you sleep-kind of like laundry. The tips and tricks in this book are awesome. I finally feel like I have the paper clutter monster under control!

 

That’s A Lot Of Books!

 

Yes, yes it is! In fact, as I said, there are 9 books. At a grand total of…wait for it…$60.89. Holy crap. That’s a LOT! You can imagine my shock when I actually sat down with a calculator just now (yes, I had not added all of that up until right now.

So. Why am I telling you this? Well, last year, I learned about something called Ultimate Bundles-which is a company that curates a huge bundle of e-books, courses, and freebies a few times a year. When I say huge, I mean HUGE.

And they offer these books at a ridiculous discount. SERIOUSLY. They are discounting the upcoming Homemaking Bundle by 97%. Goodness. And you know what? Every single book I listed is included. I wish I’d seen this a month ago!

In fact, there are at least $100.00 of books included in the Bundle that are on my Amazon Wishlist. That right there is reason enough for me to grab it when it goes live next week!

The other great thing? You get 100 e-books, plus a bunch of bonuses that are worth more than the price of the bundle.

100 books…. That’s enough to keep me busy on my Kindle for quite awhile! And if this Ultimate Bundle isn’t your thing, don’t worry-the DIY Bundle and Healthy Living Bundles will be released later this year.

 You should definitely check it out NOW so you don’t miss it!

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