The Busy Mom's Shopping Guide for Easter

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This post is for the busy moms, lazy moms, procrastinating moms, bargain shopping moms, i-don't-like-shopping moms, i-love-online-shopping moms, Amazon Prime-loving moms, and all the other moms (and dads). 

Here is the scoop: I am a bargain shopper. I love after holiday clearance sales! It saves you money to pick up discounted items for the following holiday if you are sure you can use them. So my Easter basket items were bought last year. I will pick up a bit of candy/trinkets for Egg fillers, but that's it. 

To be honest, I hit the mother load last year and have Easter books for my toddler to fill up her basket for next couple years. Literally. 

With that being said, I don't always find things after the holidays or life gets crazy so I don't get a chance to shop. I end up online at the last minute or in-store paying way too much out of desperation. I definitely get it if you wait until the holiday approaches.

So for all you moms that are waiting, for whatever reason, I put together an online shopping list to help you out ❤

I wanted to be sure to list items to teach about the story of Jesus and meaning of Easter. I found some faith based items that look really fun and included one we have already. Definitely check these items out. I also made sure to have some faith focused books that are reasonably priced. 
*Also, Amazon prices change quickly, so hurry if you want these deals. These are as of the posting date. 

Faith Based Items 
-Glow In The Dark Egg Hunt Kit (See The Light of Jesus)--Glow in the dark egg hunt AND learning about Jesus?!?! Sound like yes for the kids to me! →
-Resurrection Eggs--We have had these for years. Really nice tradition.→
-Wooden Resurrection "Toy" Set →

Bright Baby Touch and Feel Easter →
Where Are Baby's Easter Eggs? →
Clifford's Happy Easter →
The Story of Easter →
My Day With Jesus →
The Beginner's Bible Come Celebrate Easter Activity Book →
The Week That Led to Easter →

Prefilled Easter Eggs and Candy
Car filled Easter Eggs (12)→
Marvel Avengers Eggs (16)→
Zoo Eggs →
110 Pieces of Candy (M&Ms, Snickers, etc.) →

I hope this list helps you out!

Again, Amazon prices change frequently. Hurry if you want these deals!
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A Little Life Update: March 2017

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 What's exciting this week?
*The swim awards banquet--Sophia got Rookie of the Year for her age group Monday. Woohoo!
*Grandparent's week at school

*Book fair
*Finally got my replacement phone yesterday--so glad I got the phone insurance. 

What's for dinner?
M: Dinner at sports banquet
T: Cheeseburgers, coleslaw
W: Steak Fajitas
Th: Pot Roast
F: Tacos

Bell's Palsy Update
I had a really bad weekend. Saturday was particularly awful. My head hurt so bad I was dizzy and puking. I called the doctor and they sent over a prescription and scheduled another appointment for this week. 
So I went to the doctor yesterday and found out some good news. Nothing abnormal on my MRI. They were checking for tumors. So that's really good.  I should know in the next few days how the other test turn out. 

What's on my mind? Easter!
I can't be the only person "window shopping" online. I actually got a lot of basket stuff already, but check out these goodies: 

Prefilled eggs without the candy →
 Really Cute Easter burlap banner (super cheap) → 
My First Easter Boardbook (another bargain) →
Resurrection Eggs--these are such a great way to tell the story of the crucifixion and resurrection. We love them! → 

Just a quick little update! 
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$10 @ Target: March 2017

Hey guys!
It's that time of month where I get to link up something I bought at Target for under 10 dollars. 
This month was so easy. I walked right into the Dollar Spot and picked up three small artificial plants. I needed something small to decorate a shelf. I ended up getting home and they were too small, but I still really like them. 

Each was $3.00. So I actually stayed under budget.  It's nice to have a little bit of green in the house.  

Recognize that rug in the background? Yep, those are sold at Target also. I have that rug design in all of my bathrooms. ☺

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Happy Friday 2017 #11

 We all know what today is...

In 2016 someone was angry on St. Patrick's Day ↓

This about sums it up↓

This week I posted about 
saving money & time with homemade pizza toppings. 

Anyone going to see this? 
Image result for beauty and the beast
I'm not sure we will make it this weekend, but I am kind of looking forward to it. 

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Saving Time and Money on Pizza

Do you know what the man and kids in my house love? No, of course you don't, but I bet you can give a good guess. Pizza. ❤
Judging from how much we order it you would think I love it too. We have ordered from a local pizza place so much this month it's gotten embarrassing to face the delivery person. I haven't felt great, not been doing big grocery shopping trips and it's the only food businesses that deliver. Besides avoiding eye contact with the delivery man, it is also does some damage to the wallet.💰
I decided to change that this weekend. Making homemade pizza isn't hard, but it's definitely not quick or convenient if you want a lot of toppings. That all changes when you make those toppings in advance.
With a little bit of prep you can have your toppings sitting in the freezer for those busy nights.
Let me start by saying I don't mention cheese, crust and sauce below. For me, those are the easy parts. I make homemade cheese pizza without much time or thought. I don't have any amazing homemade recipes for sauce or crust. I'm not particularly loyal to any brand either.  I just grab jars, bags or boxes of whatever I feel like using. Typically these products store well in the pantry or freezer. Toppings, on the hand, kill me.

If you have any questions or tips on how you save time/money on your pizza nights, let me know in the comments. 
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Happy Friday 2017 #10

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Hey guys!

This week I am feeling↓
This past week hasn't been the best week ever. My diagnosis of Bell's Palsy the previous week didn't actually prepare me for how painful it would be this week. There also hasn't been any improvement and I am on day 14 since I first had pain behind my ear (Day 12 since diagnosis). I went to the doctor once this week and I am now waiting to be scheduled for an MRI.  I wasn't planning on doing a post specifically about my experience, but since it can happen to anyone, I am working on one just to share with other people who end up with the same experience.

This week this is perfect for me↓
  You can get it here

This Week On Off The Vine↓

This weekend↓
I am looking forward to continuing to resting. Maybe next weekend or at least my next Friday I will be feeling completely different. I am sure I will tackle a few small projects, but I am not making any big plans.

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How An Inflatable Pool Made Us Talk About Differences

When my oldest daughter was 4 she got an inflatable pool. It was about 6 feet long and 3 feet high. Nothing special. She would play in it for hours. She loved it even more when one of her friends would come over and swim too.  They kind of rotated at which house they would play. One day Sophia went over to her house. She came home telling me that her friend had gotten a pool and had invited her to swim there. A swimming play date was arranged and the next day Sophia went there to swim for the first time instead.

When they came to pick Sophia up I overheard her say as they walked down the driveway, "I don't know why we don't swim at my house and play at yours later. My pool is big. Yours is a tub."

I cringed. At 4 years old I knew she didn't mean it in a negative way. She loved playing with her friend. They were best friends. I heard her mom respond to Sophia but saying some along the lines of, "You will still have fun. There are other toys in it."

When Sophie came home I asked the normal questions, but I followed up with one that I need a specific answer. Is her pool like yours?

Why did I need to ask? I had to open the door for the conversation. Sophie told me her pool was smaller and just a plastic tub. She compared it to one of my storage tubs. I asked if her friend was excited about having a new pool and she said yes.

 I reminded her that some people have real pools. Some people live by the lake. Some people live by the ocean. What if she had invited them over and they didn't like her pool? What if it was brand new and she was excited when that happened?

The inflatable pool prompted a conversation that I didn't realize I needed to have as a parent. 
She was 4 then, but we have a similar conversation a lot. It's not about pools, but about how 
→one person's very best may look different than someone else's. ←

 And when that happens, take the time to congratulate them. Compliment them. Acknowledge whatever that "best" may be for them even if you think there is something better. 
For kids it's frequently new clothes, shoes, school, winning a game, moving houses, parent's getting a new car, earning a grade on something at school...I find as adults sometimes it's even to forget these types of conversations or to stop having them when kids are little, but I wonder how many hurt feelings could be avoided if we kept having them.

What unexpected thing prompted a "parenting moment" for you? 
Or how about moments your kids said something that made you cringe?
Let me know in the comments.
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Happy Friday 2017 #9

 Have you guys heard about Liberty German and Abigail Williams? They were the teens murdered in Delphi, Indiana. If you haven't, here is a link to CBS News. I'm not sure how much exposure it has had outside of Indiana. I live in Indiana, so it is huge news here. It really breaks my heart. I really wish people could be kind and good to one another.  Really, if not that, just leave other people alone. Anyone else feel the same? It really is that simple.