Deals · Family · Home

TGIF

Thank the lord it’s FRIDAY!

OH. Wait. I’m a mom. And have sick kids. Sooooo….

Yea. Not too much to celebrate here. But, I am so grateful we only have Bronchitis+ear infection+sinus infections here. It could be worse…My Mom has Strep throat, and my grandfather has the flu. Granny had bronchitis all last week-this family has been hit hard!

Remember that last post where I was so ambitious and was going to do allllll the fun things over Winter Break? You guessed it-those plans fell out the window. Hit hard. And rolled into the high grass next to the road to never be seen again. Let me just say, I have HIGH HOPES for next week..Guess what were doing?

Were heading to Cleveland for a Cavs game!

My heart just skipped a little thinking about it….We went last year and it was genuinely one of the most fun nights of my life. It was also the coldest night I ever remember! The wind was so cold it BURNED. It felt like my skin was being cut through my jeans–my poor thighs were ICE. I felt like those people trying to hike Everest. You are frozen but it doesn’t matter. You are on a mission and you DEAL.

We were some of the only few crazies who were walking around #TheLand before the game to soak in all the Cleveland vibes….and man did we get them. It was Christmas Day so everything was closed of course, except for a couple restaurants but we soaked in every breath of that cold air. Adored every piece of architecture. And cried tears that almost froze from giddy laughter! I am ready for another night like that. Honestly, I think I deserve it.

We have had sickness floating through this house for weeks…Technically months. Ford has been sent home a ridiculous amount of times for a fever. How does that happen? Who just gets a fever every week? I tried to talk the school into keeping him y’all. ( Don’t judge me. I need him to save all the excused absences I can.)

He gets 10 excused absences FOR THE YEAR. We literally have already used 8. That makes me so sick! I hated to miss school as a kid…and vowed my kid wouldn’t miss school unless we were doing something really awesome: like going to a Cavs game. Hehehe.

At any rate, the reason behind the post: THIS COLD WEATHER. I can’t remember a time where Knoxville has been so cold for so long! And you will laugh, because we have only been in the teens and twenties, but it feels so cold! Where all of my family is in Ohio, the windchill has put it at -14 DEGREES. Holy cannoli that is rough. Either way, us Knoxvillian’s must all be sissy’s because we can’t handle it. All I have wanted to do is wear the warmest clothes I have and snuggle on the couch with coffee and my favorite blanket.

Anybody with me? I know of so many Mom’s who are soaking up the time at home (because leaving the house is TOO MUCH WORK) and to leave might just threaten your cheeks with frostbite. I feel so badly for all of our friends who have to work outside in this mess. And think of all the ones who are stuck in FEET of snow. ( Ok I am actually kind of jealous of those people-I have never seen snow of the sort!) Either way guys, please stay safe this winter. It’s a mess!

Next order of business: I want to show some of my favorite people my FAVORITE snuggle blanket of all time. You can’t buy it at a store. You can’t order it online. It’s one of a kind. And I MADE IT. Me!

I am so proud of this thing. It was my first big quilt..and dolls, it is BIG. I made it big enough to fit on our bed buuuuttt…..it’s crooked. Like-really crooked. ( I had no idea what I was doing BTW.) And i was devastated at first. On top of it looking all jankety, I saw every. Single. Flaw.

But now, I have come to love this thing so much. When family and friends come, it’s the first blanket they reach for. People visit for the first time and ask where I bought it. (Now that one makes me feel great.) I love to be able to tell them I made it years ago when I first got a sewing machine of my own (and it has turned into a staple in our house.)

It took months to finish and I had no idea what I was doing–and I had to piece it together, triangle by triangle .Then attach batting to the middle. I also had to piece together a quilt of some ugly sort to the back because it was so huge there isn’t fabric at Joann’s big enough to cover it. Again-HUGE.

Either way, I don’t have too many THINGS that mean too much to me. I am actually a compulsive trasher/donator. I went through my drawers today and got rid of all the socks/undies I don’t wear. Baby SISSSSTER!!!!!! Get ready for a huge bag of knee socks! (The undies got thrown away. No worries yall.)

But this blanket y’all , it’s now a piece of me. Maybe even tradition if you will. It may be our newest ‘horse blanket.” I don’t expect you to know that that is, but I will happily explain:) My Mom’s grandmother made a blanket and we inherited it. It was covered in horses of different colors and tattered to pieces. As kids, we all used it and never thought a thing of it-til it was gone. I would kill to have that blanket back now. The sentimental value is irreplaceable even years after it has been gone.

I am hoping one of these days, this blanket of mine will be my kid’s “horse blanket.” The blanket that is used nonstop. The one people ask about when they come to visit for the first time. The one that means the most to them as time goes on.

Don’t ask my why I have become so attached to this large piece of fabric. It’s just smaller pieces of fabric sewn together. Nothing fancy. Even still, I am not realizing how important blankets are in this house. I made Ford a blanket when he was 6 months old. He immediately loved it and I was thrilled! He quickly became attached, and got to the point that he wanted a specific corner near his face to fall asleep-weird, I know. We couldn’t even tell the difference between the corners, but he could! So as we put him in bed, we would rub each corner on his cheek until he gave us the OK that this was THE corner. When he got to the point where he could talk, he would tell us he wanted his “corner”. Not even his blanket. He had to have the “corner.” Crazy I know-but totally true.

Looking at that blanket now, you know exactly which corner it is. Because it been sewn back together countless times. Because it’s tattered. It’s falling apart. But he still sleeps with it every night: religiously.

We have only had one instance where we left it at a restaurant in Florida. We noticed it about 20 minutes out and immediately ran back for it. Whew! That was a close one. I can’t imagine how that trip would have gone if we lost that blanket. Not good ya’ll. Not good.

Dale’s Momma knit him a blanket with a huge OSU “O” in the middle and he loves it. It the sweetest! It just goes to show how much we love our blankets around here! We each have one here that we love, and I hope it always stays that way forever-that there is something we each cherish.

Ok yall-the blanket rant over. Promise.

Is there any particular THING you have that you cherish like we do? Any items that have been handed down for generations that you love? Or maybe something you have that you want handed down? Let me know! I love knowing your stories!

All the love dolls πŸ’‹

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Deals · Family · kids · Travel

Family Time and our newest baby

Hey yall! Just a little life update-blog style!

I am so hoping you all enjoyed your time off with family and friends this week! We have taken advantage of every second off work/school so far and I know we will be so sad when it’s over!( Family leaving always makes us so sad.) It’s not too often you get 3 weeks off school….The out of town family comes in for a week+… Then (hopefully) head to Kentucky to see the little sister and party for a while. (I love to always be on the run-it’s embedded in me and I hope it never stops!)

At the moment, were spending time in Greenville with family and its just what the doctor ordered.(Literally. I work for a doctor and he told me to enjoy time with my family this week. Boom. I actually can follow directions.) Sometimes being with the fam is just what we need right?

And while family being in town is BEYOND fun, it’s slightly exhausting. We party hard yall! Ok by “party hard”, I might mean eating every piece of junk around and playing cards til the wee hours of the night. And let me tell you-these peeps don’t play around. We stay up until 2, 3, 4am+, and while it’s all fun and games when we are at it–the next morning is ROUGH. This poor mama can’t hang that late! I am a SLEEPER. I seriously love my sleep and NEED it. (Lame I know.) Kudos to all you people who can roll with the big dogs and stay up past midnight every night. I’m way jealous.

Catch this: At one point this weekend, we had almost 30 people at our house. 30 PEOPLE!And you know what? It was one of the most fun family nights I can recall! I wish I would have taken some pictures to share with you–but I am a firm believer in the “if I didn’t take pics that night, it must have been a great time” mantra. Well, this was one of those nights. Definitely one for the books. So you will just have to take my word for it, K?

And while I wanted to get my kids to sleep at a decent hour, everyone begged to let Ford stay up with the other kids. Sheesh. Any other Mama’s out there let the guilt get to them? Well I gave in and let him stay up past midnight. (He is usually in bed by 8pm.) So what does this mean for Mom? Let’s just say a “not-so-easy-day.And keep in mind, they have stayed up so late for several nights in a row now and ooooooh it kills me! I am a creature of routine when it comes to my kids bedtimes, because I know how they work. It’s so important for mine to stick to the plan or everything at some point will fall to pieces. Nonetheless, I am trying to sway a little bit for this week so we can enjoy family and I hope those little boys appreciate it!

Either way, sometimes amidst all the craziness (and crabbiness) you need a new toy or puzzle or SOMETHING to keep the kids happy.

In our case, enter the CRAFT . She has been a lifesaver this week! Our tiny people were BEYOND THRILLED to get to open this big box in the mail. When I told them it was Blog mail for them, they instantly did a little happy dance. (I am the same way boys… Blog mail is my favorite!)

So I, of course, have to share with my favorite people on my corner of the internet about our sweet CRAFT. He is a creature from a faraway planet with the softest fur and sweetest cuddles any toy could give. (Ok so maybe he isnt technically from another plantet, but we are rolling with the storyline given with him. Or, in our case, her.)

My Cashy Boy promptly named his CRAFT Kiri (which- I am so proud of. I can’t lie. He usually wants to name everything Lightening. Or Jackson. So to pick a girl and give her a cool name is fun for me. I keep finding myself talking about Kiri because I like her name so much.)

Some highlights from our newest lady? The softness is out of this world.(Pardon the pun.) No joke– I can’t think of any softer fabric!

She also has extra long arms and legs for giving the biggest hugs! On the website, they come in a variety of colors, designs, and different animals-all equally fun and sweet!

Another plus, and in my opinion, maybe one of the greatest bits about these sweet creatures? They are wonderful for children with autism or anxiety disorders! Check out this fabulous article written HERE for some in depth information.

Our boys have been having the time of their lives with Sweet Kiri. They have taken here on our little weekend family trip and they already are talking about taking her to see auntie Jamie in Kentucky! I guess this soft little bear is the newest part of the family. Maybe she will become a regular blog guest. πŸ™‚

Now my boys are 3 and 5 and are ABSOLUTELY IN LOVE with this lovie. They have a couple of things that have to go with us on every trip including Ford’s baby blanket (I made it when he was 6 months old) and Cash’s pillow.I have a strong feeling baby Kiri is the newest family member and will now be making every trip with us…I wish she was around when they were smaller! She is currently sleeping with my boys and it’s the cutest thing I have ever seen. For real real.

Little Kiri has given us a little bit of peace this wild weekend and I felt like you all needed to know how awesome she has been to us! My kids have been walking around telling people, ” This is our first Blog-mail!” It’s the cutest thing ever, I’m tellin’ ya.

Don’t you think these would make the GREATEST keepsake gifts for any kid you know? I also thought this would make one of those awesome animals you take a baby picture every month with-from newbie on up! It would be such a cute gauge to show how much they have grown each month, and every year after!

They are bound to quickly turn into one of the kiddo’s best buddies! Fortunately, ihelpmoms.com is giving us a coupon code to buy one for everyone on your gift-giving list! Just enter code: ihelpmoms10 at checkout! Yall, check the website QUICK because so many CRAFT animals are on super clearance and will be finding new homes fast! Grab a few for the grand babies/nieces/nephews/EVERYONE.

So if you feel like being the sweet parents for a minute, order one of these sweet babies for your little and thank me later.

Ok so now that my rant about our newest love is over, how is your winter break? I personally am loving having Dale off of work for a WEEK STRAIGHT and seeing him have so much fun with his family in town. It’s the cutest! And getting to forego housework for a week is pretty killer too( Minus all the laundry that comes with 7 extra people sleeping here.) Other than that, we are living it up over here in Knoxville. What about you all?

At any rate, thanks for checking in here I will see you guys next year!

All the love dolls πŸ’‹

Beauty · Deals · Fashion

QuickTan

Hey dolls! Last blog post was a fun one, but this one has me equally giddy!

I don’t know about you, but being tan is one of my favorite things about Summer. And by that I mean, slightly tinted so I don’t look my normal ghostly/transparent. But I think my body is programmed to rid myself of sad excuse for a “tan” the day Summer takes its leave. Lame. So I stay WHITE and it grosses me out on the daily. Cue Quicktan.

So Quicktan is a MOBILE spray tan booth, if you will. They come to you-equipped with sprayer and tent and-and then they get down to business. I worked with Latasha, and let me tell you— the girl knows her stuff! She gave me the low-down on all things spray (Not to mention all the info she sent me before the tan). L was so sweet and made me feel comfortable from the second I met her! She even had to fight downtown parking in Knoxville (which happens to be a nightmare) and still came in smiling! That’s a win in my book.

Here is the booth you spray in:

See how simple? It pops up anywhere and they make it so convenient! Just step on the sticky feet and hop in the booth. (And y’all, the sticky feet feel a little funny, but they keep your feet from getting tan on the bottom -and we have all seen spray tanned feet. Not pretty.) Step in the booth and undress to your comfort level. My advice : Wear some skimpy panties! Tan lines are fun!-just in small portions. I made the mistake of wearing some boy shorts–and my tan lines are so thick. I’ll spare you the pictures. (Not gonna lie though–I’m loving the tan lines. Something I haven’t seen in a LONG time.)

**Funny story. Also-super embarrassing. So you have to undress there to get tan, right? OK. I strip the shirt and TISSUES fall out. Lastasha turns around and asked so sweetly, “Is that yours?” So as not to embarrass me. I was like. “Oh my gosh yes😳!!!! My bra wire was stabbing me through the fabric so I shoved the tissue there to keep it from rubbing my skin. I promise I’m not trying to stuff my bra!” I could have died. She promptly commented–” You do not need to stuff your bra.” #true Hahahahhaha thank goodness she was so sweet with such a good sense of humor.**

Anyways, the check out my legs after about 14 hours. <<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
nd not orange or streaky in the least bit! These girls know what they are doing. Promise. I have been spray tanned so many times ( Ask my husband's family. They have seen me at too many family cabin weekends with orange streaks and drips down my ankles. I went to the wrong girls. I needed Quicktan. You need Quicktan!

So this is my arm before my tan…..

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
an and after my first shower.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
No complaints.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
hat, pictures don't do it justice–but my confidence level was THROUGH THE ROOF today. Not to mention all the people who commented on my makeup being perfect today. All because of the spray tan. The beautiful, beautiful spray tan.

<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<<
e tan looks! ( I just love that he always wants to hold my hand, even if were walking on the sidewalk in from of the house! Now I have a pic to remember that, on top of the fact that you can see the difference between my skin and his here πŸ˜†

Ok one more–but this one with the dog. Sweet peach can’t help but be in the pictures too…and she showcases my tan pretty well if I do say so myself. I’m a little proud-can you tell????

So here you can see what you need to do before and after tanning. . Easy steps–just like any other spray tan. Except Quicktan is so different in every other way. They are sweet, personable, and professional. I have never seen a a spray tan so even in allllll my years of tanning. And I have tanned every way possible. Believe me.

I’m telling you–the spray tan is the miracle fix. You want whiter teeth? Spray tan. Shinier diamonds? Spray tan. You want your eyes to look bluer? Spray tan. Want to cover stretch marks/scars? You guessed it. Spray tan. Look better in your skivies? Just want to feel better all around? Go check out Quicktan. It’s a huge mood/confidence booster–and that means you are happier all around, right? It’s certainly rung true for me-It’s a spray tan miracle! *****I have to say–I didn’t snag these benefits from Quicktan or some random internet site. These are all of the amazing perks I have witnessed on MYSELF. So rest assured, you will see them too!***** Another great idea these girls have are spray tan parties! So if you and the girls are headed to the beach, why not all get tan before you pop that bikini on? Getting married and want your squad to keep your pics looking good? Why not all get a spray tan!

So are you ready to try Quicktan? When booking with them, use code SMITTEN in the comments for $5.00 off your tan! Score! I promise you will love it. They are based out of Morristown but will come to Knoxville when you need them! (I’m loving your dedication to your company ladies. Your commitment shows!)

Ladies–time to visit their site and book your tan. Don’t forget to use the code SMITTEN in the comments for $5.00 off! Tell them I sent you.

Enjoy your tan loves!

All the love dolls πŸ’‹

Beauty · Deals · Diy · Family · Fashion

Best All-Around Face Mask

We all are looking for it. No one can seem to find it-no matter what. Well, you know why-it’s not out there.

As sad of a thought as that is, it’s true. There is no holy grail of skin care. There is no one-size fits all product. And if it did exist, it would be too expensive for any of us to afford. But every so often, you find something worth sharing-and I have a mask I can’t help but talk about!

Some of my favorite Instagrammers use it and swear by it, but I have been beyond skeptical. No way is something this affordable going to work on MY crazy skin. Well, I can’t guarantee it will work for you, but I promise I will be truthful in what I feel about it!

I bought the Aztec Clay Mask everyone is raving about on Instagram and Pinterest-and it did NOT DISAPPOINT . ( I tried to link if for you all, but ya know–technology isn’t always nice.) Here is what it looks like….

Now the packaging isn’t glitzy and it’s not anything fancy-but LAW does it WORK. My face was so soft after the first use!

I also noticed my pores looked so much smaller after I took it off. (My pores are the size of Texas so this is enough to keep me coming back. For reals ya’ll.)

This is what it looks like on! ( Prepare yourself–it’s not a pretty picture.)

Whew! Made it past that-now back to the not-ugly stuff.

-So it’s simple. Just mix with apple cider vinegar or water ( I used the Bragg’s ACV with the mother). Read the back of the pot for all the directions you need-you can’t mess it up!

Everything I have read so far, says it works best when mixed with ACV, but some have tried water and still saw results. It’s a versatile little miracle clay! In fact, I think i will whip up a mask now and throw it on πŸ™‚

I am home making phone calls today and blogging, obviously, so why not get comfy while I’m here!

OH! Did I mention it PULSATES???? Your skin feels like its moving around and tightening up. Weird/Oddly satisfying.

Yall-check the back for all the ways to use it too! It’s not just a face mask–I won’t tell you all it does–I will leave that to you to see when you buy it ;).

There you have it-my new favorite product and I think you will like it too πŸ˜‰

What’s your thoughts? Have you heard of this? Want to try it? Let me know!

All the love dolls πŸ’‹

Deals · Deals · Fashion · kids

One of the best Dollar Tree Finds….And It’s a MUST HAVE.Β 

Hey there friends!

This has been such a crazy month for me–and I am loving it! We have been keeping ourselves busy spending time with family and friends, spent the last weekend at a 3 day bible convention (so refreshing) alll the summer fun outside, party planning, our bible ministry, etc. All exciting stuff .  😬

One of the main events taking up my time this past month? Jack and Jules . Not familiar? It is our local children’s consignment that comes around twice a year…..and I LOVE it. It’s time consuming but SO WORTH IT. It’s a great way to sell your children’s gently used clothes/and to grab some great deals for your littles. (Let me know if you want a blog post on my hanging/pricing process!)

At any rate, I wanted to share one of my tried and true time savers–and this will work for anyone–especially those of us who hate to iron.

I am not going to lie, when my kids outgrow their clothes, I throw them in the bottom of the closet (sometimes they make it in the Β ” I’ve outgrown It box”, sometimes they don’t.) Nonetheless, they are wrinkled. To the max. Every one of them.

That being said, I think I have found the holy grail of wrinkle reducers, and it’s cheap as dirt. Literally, maybe cheaper than dirt. ( NO joke–try potting all the plants around your house. Its pricey.)

Once again, Dollar Tree has come to the rescue. This wrinkle reducer y’all–all the praise hand emojis..Here. Let me throw one in here just for fun. πŸ™ŒπŸ».. It’s bomb. Do the kids say that anymore? Someone fill me in.

Notice what it looks like here…..

Now promptly leave your house, and go grab a bottle.

It smells so fresh and clean–and it’s so simple to use! Evidently it is the off brand of Downy, which I didn’t realize existed. But I’m telling you, it can’t be much better than this.

Just spray it on your wrinkled item, and give it a pull. Pull the clothing on each side, and then top and bottom. It’s awesome! Notice the difference in this shirt.

BeforeΒ 

After

Ok please don’t fault me as I forgot to spray the bottom of the shirt, ( I was so excited to share with ya people, per the usual) but isn’t the difference AMAZING????? SO MUCH EASIER than ironing.

I also am a huge fan of the “throw it back in the dryer with a wet towel” trick, but sometimes there just isn’t time, ya know? Add in the nice scent boost with it, and you have a solid champ in this wrinkle releaser.

The price point can’t be beat for the time it saves you!

Do you use a spray on wrinkle releaser like this? What is your take on it?? Let me know in the comments!!!!!

Deals

The greatest store for Deal shoppers….

I love me a deal. And I am a HUGE bargain shopper! Fun fact, when my husband and I were dating ,we were talking on the phone one night and he mentioned buying his dirt bike at a yard sale. I said, “You go to yard sales too?” This was the day I realized he was meant for me. No joke. I mean, on top of all the amazing things about him, now we could be thrifty together! 

Today, I wanted to share one of my ALL TIME FAVORITE stores with you….Drum roll please……its Gabe’s! 

Do you have a Gabe’s close to you? If not, you may want to google the closest one! I am not kidding ya’ll, it’s amazing. A friend introduced it to me and I have been hooked ever since! I stopped in today and wanted to share some of the deals I saw with my awesome blog followers-were in a club now! So you get in on all my good secrets from here on out! 

I tried to snap a few pictures as we were walking through the store, but two hungry munchkins were begging me to leave and I missed so much! But fear not, I will still fill you in on some of the goodies. 

If you aren’t familiar, Gabe’s  is something like a big TJ Maxx/Marhsalls-but with better prices! They carry AWESOME brands at a fraction of the price and it’s totally worth making a trip to the closest one. They carry clothes,jewelry,  handbags, shoes, sleepwear, pet needs, toiletries, rugs, and countless other items! 

Most of the clothes I see are usually marked under $12.99, and purses are priced amazing! Prime Example: Vera Bradley. Check out these purses. 

DO you see that? Every purse is Under $40.00-but the original price ranges for $98.00-$148.00! This wristlet was marked down to $9.00!!!! Awesome deal!  They carry Betsey Johnson and Anne Klein to name a couple others. 
Another great item for the men in our lives-Golf Shirts! They carry some awesome Callaway golf shirts for under $20.00. That’s a huge price break from the $50.00-$70.00 shirts I usually see!  

They also had some really  cute Adidas, Nike, and Under Armour shirts for guys, Great for gifts!

They also carry Sperry’s for about $29.00 and sometimes clearance is cheaper than that! If you haven’t ever bought a pair of Sperry’s (boat shoes are my fav) then go out and buy them now!  I have a few pairs and they last FOREVER. They are so comfy and Sperry’s stand behind their products! Go get some ASAP! I rate the company A++. 

Gabe’s also carries those uber cute Nike outfits for little boys for a fraction of what you would pay at a normal department store…Not to mention all the adorable Disney items! GO, go, go! Grab some now! 

Now let’s talk clearance. Gabe’s, you and your beautiful clearance sales, make my life. I’m talking $1.00 clearance on some great items. I bought my Peachy girl a $1.00 dog bone today! (That’s the pup BTW) 

Also, Check out this hair color touch up I saw-

Amazing, right?

Next, $1.00 shoes! Come on, now. Shoes for $1.00?? Unreal! Now these were slightly beat up, but usually, the clearance isn’t damaged in the least bit! And clearance items are for the most part, $1.00, $3.00, $5.00 and $7.00. 


I can’t tell you the amount of items I have bought for $1.00-candles, makeup, soaps, toys, everything! 

So now you know some of my favorite buys at Gabe’s! They do markdowns every Monday, so its best to visit Monday afternoon if possible. 

. Do you shop at Gabe’s? If so, what deals have you scored??