DIY calendar

For the past few weeks, we've spent most of our free time (which less face it, it's pretty much nonexistent) putting the finishing touches on my … [Continue Reading]

editorialcalendar

Younique 3D Fiber Mascara Review

I was recently sent Younique's 3D Fiber Lash mascara to try. I've seen several people rave about this product, so I was interested to give it a try. … [Continue Reading]

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Erin Condren Holiday Collection 2014 {and a giveaway}

For the past several years, I've looked to Erin Condren for my holiday cards. Ordering holiday cards and sending them out to our friends and family is … [Continue Reading]

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My Whole 30 Story

Caroline, from Olive You Whole is posting my Whole 30 story today on her blog. Head over to check it out. Her blog is full of other success stories … [Continue Reading]

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expectations and realizations

When I decided to stay home, I had this picture in my mind. A picture of what our lives would like with me spending those 40+ hours at home, rather … [Continue Reading]

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DIY calendar

For the past few weeks, we’ve spent most of our free time (which less face it, it’s pretty much nonexistent) putting the finishing touches on my office work space downstairs. I don’t actually know whether to call it an office or a craft room. It’s really a little of both. As we finish projects, I’ll be sharing some of my favorites on the blog, and I’ll be sharing the whole space, too!

One thing I knew I wanted was an editorial calendar to keep track of blog posts for both my personal blog and Every Day Cheer. I know Google has a fantastic calendar that syncs with my phone and can be accessed anywhere, but I’m a paper and pencil girl. I like to look at it and be able to put my hands on it. I also know that blog content tends to get moved around depending on when sponsored posts come back to me from editors, and when I need to stick a review or giveaway in the mix.

I did a good bit of brainstorming before coming up with the final product, but I must say that it turned out exactly as I had envisioned. It’s also fully functional and on the wall right beside my desk, so I can look over at it while I’m working and see my schedule at a quick glance.

The calendar is good for five weeks, at the end of each week, I just pull those stickies off and move everything up. I mark the actual date on the sticky note, it’s easy to mark through if things change, and I don’t have to worry about rewriting the dates on the actual white board.

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Here’s the thing, you can use this same calendar template for so many other things in your home. You could color coordinate the sticky notes for different members of your family, or whatever your personal schedule lends itself to.

The process is quick and easy, here’s how the wall calendar came to life.

I started with white board we already had and removed the trim for the actual calendar. You can have Lowe’s or Home Depot cut a piece of shower board for you for a fraction of the cost of a white board. If you want it to be magnetic, I would just go with a white board from an office supply store. You can choose your size and remove the frame for this project, it’s an easy step and pops right off without much force. For reference we used a 35″x23″ white board for the project.

Start by measuring your grid lines for the calendar. I just created a calendar grid to one side, and used the extra space for ideas, you could even use it as a notes section. I knew that each of my squares needed to accommodate a standard sized Post-It! note, so I used that as a guide for creating the grid. I used washi tape to create the grid lines.

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Once your grid is complete, use your board to mark the trim and cut the pieces to size to ensure an accurate fit.

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Hold the dry erase board in place and trace around the entire board, giving yourself a guide for attaching the trim pieces. Attach all four sides and corner pieces to the wall using finishing nails.

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Using adhesive caulk, glue the dry erase board in place. Fill in nail holes and joints with caulk and paint to finish the board. I used the Silhouette to cut out the words for the calendar.

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Once the board has dried and the final coat of paint has been applied, you’re ready to start planning!

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Younique 3D Fiber Mascara Review

I was recently sent Younique’s 3D Fiber Lash mascara to try. I’ve seen several people rave about this product, so I was interested to give it a try. You should know that my lashes are terrible. BK has better lashes than me, times ten. I wish I was joking about that, but I’m definitely not. I was a little skeptical because my eyes tend to be very sensitive, but I was pleasantly surprised when this product didn’t cause any sensitivity at all.

Younique 3D Fiber mascara has several steps to long and full lashes, but if done correctly, it makes a huge difference. You have to apply your normal mascara, then transplanting gel, then fibers, then transplanting gel to secure the fibers in place.

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Here’s a closer look at the product. It takes a little practice, but once you get the hang of it and see what works best with your lashes, then it’s simple!

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Here’s a look at my eyelashes, the top with just my normal mascara and the bottom with one coat of fibers.

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Overall, I was super pleased with the way they made my lashes look. They were very noticeably longer and fuller and I love the look it gave me. I’ve definitely never been able to achieve this length and fullness with any other mascara I’ve used. There’s a $29 price tag on the kit, but I think it’s a great investment, because mascara usually lasts me months! I won’t use this on a daily basis, so it’ll last even longer considering I don’t need full on makeup for MDO pick-up.

I think it’s a great tool to have in your make-up bag!

I’m hosting a little Facebook party for the next few days and you can order online, if you’re interested in trying the product for yourself. Just send me an email (jgreen0905@gmail.com) if you want to be added or need any other information. Or you can order straight from this link. They also have some other products that I’m excited to try out!

Erin Condren Holiday Collection 2014 {and a giveaway}

For the past several years, I’ve looked to Erin Condren for my holiday cards. Ordering holiday cards and sending them out to our friends and family is one of my favorite parts of the Christmas season. It says a great deal about the quality of the product that I keep coming back to Erin Condren season after season. What’s not to love? Her designs always feature bright colors and fun prints, coordinating envelopes and address stickers, and the paper quality is top-notch.

I was able to take a closer look at the cards in the collection this year and I think this might make my decision even harder.

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I’m super excited to bring you a fun preview of the holiday collection from Erin Condren, and share a few of my picks for holiday gifts with you.  I’m going to share with you a few of my favorite picks from the 2014 Holiday Collection. And if you order yours by October 31, you can use the code BEJOLLY30 and take 30% off your cards. I’ll be using our recent beach pictures and ordering mine soon (it’s always nice to get a head start on the busy holiday season).

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Let’s start with the classic collection.

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How fun are the colors? It’s nice to step outside the traditional color scheme, and I also love the collage aspect. I love a card with several fun photos.

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I love the idea of the post card holiday card. The personalized note makes it incredibly meaningful, and you can save a step without the envelope.

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And I will forever love the golf foil design. It’s ultra glamorous, the paper is double-thick, this card is just a beauty. There’s also a silver paisley option that is equally as glamorous.

The Holiday Collection isn’t limited to cards, there are also tons of great gifts ideas and holiday must-haves on the site, too!

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The lucite trays are no doubt one of my favorite products, and I’m loving this holiday version. I think it would be adorable for holiday parties and for leaving milk and cookies for Santa!

Screen Shot 2014-10-14 at 11.08.45 PMPersonalized gift labels make gift wrapping a little easier. No writing everyones names, just stick a label on the gift and you’re all set!

There are so many options! Great gifts like personalized notebooks, Life Planners for the New Year, iPad cases, I could go on and on about the fun gifts you could buy! And think of all the things you could buy from the Holiday collection with a $200 gift card…

I’ve got 2- $200 gift cards up for grabs that you can use for the Holiday collection!! You can enter below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’ll choose a winner next week… Good Luck!! 

My Whole 30 Story

Caroline, from Olive You Whole is posting my Whole 30 story today on her blog. Head over to check it out. Her blog is full of other success stories and great food inspiration. I’m starting another round of Whole 30 tomorrow and you can follow along on my new Instagram account, @jenngdoeswhole30. Hello, eggs, sweet potatoes, and ghee. My, oh my, I’ve missed you!

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expectations and realizations

When I decided to stay home, I had this picture in my mind. A picture of what our lives would like with me spending those 40+ hours at home, rather than in the classroom. I had high expectations for myself.

My house would be clean.

My laundry would never pile up.

Dinner would wholesome and homemade, ready by 6:00 o’clock each night.

I would set aside specific learning times for Braylen, and focus on a set of objectives in reading and math.

The list could go on and on.

In my head, it was going to be perfect. Actually, I was going to be perfect. Fantastic, actually, at this new job of mine. I mean, my house already stayed pretty clean, my laundry remotely caught up, I cooked sometimes, and I did all of these things while working. So not working was surely going to make me a top-notch Martha, right?

Wrong.

Somehow, I have less time. Or at least I feel that way. And it has taken me a few months to adjust to this new normal. I had set the bar so incredibly high for myself, that each and everyday I felt like I was failing by the time Allen came home. I felt unorganized and out of my element.

And I wondered, how in the world is this happening? I am failing at the very thing that I prayed so hard to be able to do, stay home with my kids. 

That’s when it hit me.

I didn’t choose to stay home so our house would be cleaner.

Or for my to-do list to get smaller.

I didn’t choose to stay home so I could change the sheets more often.

Or fold more towels.

I chose to stay home to focus on those two little joys that call me mom. 

A few simple realizations helped me to lower my expectations, and be better at this new job.

You see, they don’t care how clean the house is, or if I switch out their closets before the new season comes.

You know what they do care about? Playing at the park, and eating popsicles on the back porch. Having a picnic in the front yard, and building a fort in the playroom.

And there will be days when the laundry is caught up and the house is clean, at the same time. There will be days when I feel like I have it all together. Days when we bake cupcakes and actually clean up the mess before bedtime.

But, there will be days when those things don’t happen. There will be bad days and messy days. And that’s okay, too.

Because in the end we’re together. A little perspective goes a long way. The other day I filled out a field trip form for Braylen and I didn’t have to take a personal day. I signed up to help with the class party. I dropped her off at school this morning. Last year, I only dreamed of doing these things.

With any change I know there’s a period of adjustment, and I’m still right in the middle of mine, but as the days go by I hope my focus continues to shift from this version of the SAHM in my head, to the more realistic one the I actually am.

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And just because I love them, here’s a peek at our recent beach photos from Sarah Lyn Photography. 

**Note: This is in no way meant to be a working mom vs. SAHM post. I’ve done both, they’re both hard, they’re both rewarding. It’s an extremely personal decision that you have to make based on what works best for you and your family. I firmly believe you can be 100% happy as a working mom or a SAHM and there is absolutely no right or wrong option that works for everyone.**

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