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I'm currently sitting on the floor outside my three year old's room working on various tasks on my computer.

I'm also mentally begging my child to fall asleep. Please just go to sleep so I can get off the floor and go get in my own comfy bed.

And I just remembered I still have to wash my face, take out my contacts, and brush my teeth. I despise the bedtime routine. I always have, even before we implemented the three hour please-go-to-sleep bedtime routine for the three year old.

It wasn't on purpose, and up until March of this year we had a wonderful sleeper. He never had a problem sleeping and even transitioned to a big boy bed with ease. It was too good to be true. TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE.

Then we had a baby - and because babies don't like to sleep at night when they first enter this world she naturally slept in our room so that I could feed her at all hours of the night.

So three out of four family members slept in the same room. Do you see where this is going?

I mean I get it. I don't like to feel left out, if everybody is hanging out I want to be invited. I'm not a big party gal but if there is a party I'M THERE. Just don't leave me out.

I can only assume that Eli felt left out in his own room and own bed while the three of us shared another room. I'm sure in his mind we were having all kinds of fun in there. If he considers sleepless nights, spit up and sleeping on towels that are covering up where the baby just peed because I'm too tired to change the sheets fun then we were having A BLAST.

Pretty soon the new baby was sleeping through the night, which was fantastic, and would have been a victory in the realm of parents getting some sleep, if only the three year old would have followed suit and stayed in his bed all night.

I have to admit something. I was once a firm person. And I'm not just talking about my belly (which is no longer firm) but I was a firm YES or NO person. If I said yes I meant it if I said no I meant it and if I said never I meant it.

Oh how I wish I could go back and take back any "never" statement I ever made. Because all those times I said I would "never" let a kid sleep in my bed are coming back to mock me. Laugh at me as I sleep on the tiniest sliver of the right side of the bed while simultaneously being kicked in the ribs by three year old feet.

We've tried various tactics in the seemingly impossible task of getting Eil to fall asleep alone and stay sleeping in his own bed all night long; bribery, discipline, begging, firm voices, ALL OF IT.

One morning I woke up defeated and discouraged, which was probably due to the fact that our queen size bed had too many people sleeping in it, but I was desperate. So with coffee in one hand and desperation in the other I started seeking the advice of google for ways to get the child to stay in his bed all night.

One site suggested you take the child back to their bed without saying a word to them. Just lead them back to their room put them in bed and go on your merry way. Oh yeah that sounds like a good plan. Until you do it SEVENTEEN TIMES.

Seriously who are these people? Apparently that worked for the perfect Leave it to Beaver family, but us Trees are resilient. We are fighters. We are tired and just need some SLEEP.

I became consumed with figuring out how to get Eli to sleep in his bed all night. I worried myself sick. I made bold statements about how we were failing as parents.  When Eli joined us in bed around 3am it was as if it was a physical reminder of the awful job we were doing. Why couldn't we get our kid to stay in bed?? When did we become such failures?

I think Luke could sense my discouragement (insanity?) and reminded me that it wouldn't always be this way. Yes, right now it feels consuming, but time will pass and he will sleep in his own bed all night eventually.

Since that talk I've felt better and less like a failure (well at least in this particular area). I try to enjoy every aspect of motherhood because I know the time with my babies in my arms is short - but sometimes, some parts are just exhausting, quite literally in this case, but I also know it won't always be this way.

So for now we just roll with the punches. Sometimes we sit outside his room while he falls asleep, sometimes we lie down next to him, sometimes when we joins us at 3am we let him stay in our bed and sometimes we carry him back up to his bed (several times).

I've realized that there are no absolutes in parenting. What works for some (ahem google) doesn't work for others. And what works one week may not work the next week. It doesn't mean we are failures and it doesn't mean we won't ever reach a victory in this area. If he is 14 and still wants to sleep with us we have a problem, for now we have a normal three year old who is HOPEFULLY just going through a stage. He will sleep again.

Until then we keep moving forward. And pricing king size beds.


Meals Last Week

Where do the weeks go??? I seriously plan to blog every day and have all these ideas in my head and I have half-written posts in my drafts and then before I know it its Wednesday and I haven't published anything.

The weeks dissapear faster than my memory on my iphone.

But really, where does that memory go? Why do I delete hundreds of pictures, texts, emails and even favorite apps yet I still have NO SPACE???

It's a conspiracy I tell you. I don't know what kind of conspiracy or what the reasoning would be, but I'm a constant skeptic so I call CONSPIRACY.

Another conspiarcy? Alarm clocks. If you don't set your alarm clock you will somehow, suddenly wake up early in the morning without the ability to go back to sleep.

If you do set your alarm you end up pushing snooze 18 million times and feeling more drowsy than you did the day you didn't set your alarm. Weird.

I experienced this conspiarcy this morning. I planned to go to bootcamp and set my alarrm. And then somehow slept through it for about 30 min. Well I kept pushing snooze in my sleep. Which is not uncommon for me. In high school and college I had to put my alarm clock across the room so that I would have to wake up and walk to it to turn it off. And still sometimes I wouldn't remember turning it off. So basically not really a conspiracy but just a person who can sleep through anything. Except my children crying.

Anyways, all of that to say, I came here to share my meal plan from last week (flawless transition there, thank ya).

It was a not so great week of eating out several times. I have spent almost the entire time that I've lived here in our town looking for good Chinese and while I was pregnant I found it and now when I get a craving for it I HAVE TO HAVE IT. So have it I did this weekend. Along with several other eating out experiences. Not the best use of our money. But it satisfied my craving for some good Chinese food.

Monday: Chili
It was a little "chilly" on Monday. Well it was probably like mid-70's but that's cool to me so I made my favorite chili which is this Whole Foods Market Chili recipe. Seriously the best.

Tuesday: Leftovers

Wednesday: Crockpot Sasuage Dinner
This is one of those easy throw it all in the corckpot and forget about it dinners.

Thursday: Spicy whole wheat linguini with sasuage and roasted peppers.
This is a Skinny Taste recipe which did not disappoint at all (I've never had a bad recipe from that site).  I did make this un-spicy for my bunch.

Friday: BLT's
This is one of my favorite easy dinners. We eat it with chips and dip. Easy and yummy!

And then it was followed by our bad weekend of eating out. Eating out and trying to figure out what Luke and I will wear for our annual family pics. It was thrilling. 

Try the chili! You'll thank me!


Best Sellers

This past week I hosted my annual Fall/Winter Scentsy open house for all my customers to come smell new scents and pick up a new catalog.

I love doing this because I'm able to visit with my customers and give them some fun samples while also answering questions they have.

This year was really fun because it was my first open house in our new house so I had a lot of my new friends from our neighborhood stop by and pick out scents. I love introducing people to Scentsy, they always love it!

There are so many new great scents and warmers so I thought I would share some that I've noticed to be the most popular so far this season.

This is by far my most popular warmer right now - which is funny cause it's not even new to this catalog, but I have one in my house and I think when people see how pretty it is they want to order it. All the warmers are pretty in the catalog but they are so much prettier in person!

This gorgeous warmer which donates proceeds to the National Breast Cancer Foundation is another big seller right now: (MUCH prettier in person)

And the warmer of the month this month that is 10% off is Grateful Harvest

Of course the Fall/Winter and Holiday scents are extremely popular right now. It's hard to pick my favorite so my top three right now are: Cedar Cider, Pomegranate Pear, and Shimmer But really you can't go wrong with most of the scents. And there are so many options, there is something for everyone!

Some of my popular scents during this time are:
Pumpkin Roll
Christmas Cottage
Peppermint Dreams
Autumn Sunset
Orange you Glad
Silver Bells 

As always be sure and checkout the CLOSEOUT section on my website. So many great deals on tons of products. These would be great for teacher gifts and other "random" gifts you are faced with during the upcoming holiday season.

Let me know if you have any questions or need anything!


Meal Planning. Again.

Sometimes I feel awesome, and sometimes I don't. 

I feel like my awesomeness happens every other week.

For example if I'm awesome this week, it means next week I will for sure be a total and utter train wreck.

And my awesomeness is in regards to all areas of life; wife, mom, friend, director, homemaker, etc etc.

Some weeks I'm spot on. Clean house, plenty of play time with Eli, meals planned and on the table every night, meaningful convos with Luke, caught up on all Scentsy to-dos etc etc. Basically just a rockstar at life.

And then some weeks I'm a disaster. No meals planned, scrambling around trying to figure out what to cook for dinner, pit of a house, behind on all to-do lists and so on - which all adds up to me feeling awful about myself.

Usually you can tell what my emotional state is based on how our fridge looks. If its clean and everything is put away all nice and its freshly stocked then I'm having a good week. But if it's disgusting and full of leftovers from last week that need to be trashed and random odds and ends that wouldn't make a good meal when put together, then I'm having a bad week.

The truth is in the fridge.

I try not to let the state of our fridge affect my emotions. But sometimes it's hard. I will declare I'm the "worst mom, wife, fill-in-the-blank" ever. And then I'll get over it and move on.

One thing that I have found really helps me stay on top of things is meal planning. I was really good at meal planning at the beginning of our marriage and when Eli was a baby. And then last year we moved and were sort of in transition for about 6 months and I let myself get out of the habit of doing it.

But I'm trying to get back into the routine of meal planing. Life seems to go more smoothly if I start the week with all our meals planned. It takes so much stress out of the week.

So I'm going to try and get back into the habit of sharing our meals on here, basically for record for myself of what I've cooked and what we like.

For some reason when I'm sitting down trying to plan meals I can't remember a single meal and end up doing basic things like spaghetti and tacos every other night. So hopefully keeping track of them will help me.

For the majority of our meals I will cook the main dish and then we will cook some veggies with it. In the past I did a big meal with several sides but it got to be too much. We save money by buying a ton of those frozen veggies that you steam in the microwave and just throw it with whatever meal I cook. It doesn't always go together but it works for us.

Two weeks ago was a rock star awesome week.....Our meals:

Sunday: Pioneer Woman Beef Noodle Salad Bowls
This is a meal we cook often and we love it. I could eat these noodles every single day! We usually eat ours with broccoli mixed in.

Monday: Penne with Mustard, Basil and Sausage via The Dough Will Rise Again
Gosh this recipe is so good. SO GOOD. It's probably my favorite recipe right now. I serve with some veggie and bread.

Tuesday: Chicken and Cheese Quesadilla Pie via The Girl Who Ate Everything
This is an easy and quick meal but also really good and filling. I've made it a couple of times and Luke always talks about how good it is. I only put jalapenos on half of it because I'm the only one who likes a little spice in their meal.

Wednesday: Crock pot Chicken - no recipe, if I'm running out of ideas, or didn't go to the store, or trying to save money I will just throw some chicken in the crock pot and put something on it. This time it was taco seasoning and salsa.

Thursday: Italian Mini Meatloaves

Last week wasn't so awesome and consisted of tacos and trying to throw something together the other nights. I don't even remember what we had but I do know one night I made Lemon Chicken Soup that I found on Kate's blog. And it was DELICIOUS! It was the perfect meal to eat as we welcomed in cooler weather.

I planned to meal plan tonight but got distracted doing other things including writing this out. Hopefully I will get the next week planned before the end of the day tomorrow.

I also really need to clean my fridge.


Weekend update

Friday was the day that Fall dreams are made of, well at least my dreams.

It was cool without being cold. 

It was an overcast day without being rainy and dreary.

We wore long sleeves and pants and it was perfect. 

Fridays are probably my most favorite day of the week. I love to cook a good meal and dessert on Fridays and enjoy the evening with my family. Bonus points if we don't have plans the next day and get to go to sleep knowing that the next day is full of nothing. 

This Friday was a little different though, Luke and I had a wedding to go to, which essentially meant we had a date night. 

Any night just the two of is with uninterrupted convo is a date night. I'll be honest and say that we aren't good about "date nights". So actually going out and getting a babysitter was a bit out of the norm for us, but very much anticipated. Even Eli was excited to have a babysitter for the night!

I was afraid Annie would cry a lot as she has been rather attached to me lately but she did fine after we left. 

The wedding was beautiful and we enjoyed a dinner together. It was perfect. 

On Saturday we lounged around most of the day. Luke and Eli have a tradition of making pancakes most Saturday mornings so they did that while I fed Annie. 

We played outside most of the morning and went to the park before naptime for Eli and Annie. 

I used naptime to read Gone Girl which turned out to be an incredibly creepy book. Creepy, but kept my full attention.

For dinner we went to a restaurant and ate outside. Eli was able to run around which is always perfect for a 3 year old. 

It was a gorgeous night and we all enjoyed being outside.

Sunday after church we went to a work party that Luke's company holds every year. I get excited to go cause I know Eli will love it. And he did. He got his face painted and jumped on several inflatables and looked at (but didn't touch) various "extreme animals" (snakes, a baby kangaroo, a porcupine). It was a fun event and a changeup from our normal quiet Sundays. 

The weekend was a great one....even though it started out feeling like Fall but Sunday afternoon it was downright hot. It still felt very fall-like

Hopefully Fall weather will be here to stay soon!  


Our day on Wednesday

Recently when  my parents moved my mom found an old journal buried in a box. It was a journal she started when me and my middle sister were young and when my mom was still pregnant with my youngest sister.

She texted me a picture of the journal so that I could read it and although it was just a normal-everyday "mundane" day in our lives at that point (year 1992) it was so fun and interesting to look back on now.

She talked about going to the doctor, and going to check on the new house with me and my sister and other random tid bits from that particular day. I loved reading every bit of it in my now adult eyes looking back on my childhood. Not only looking back on my childhood but also looking back at my parents as actual people. At the time they were fearless, confident, and worry-free in my eyes, but now being in their shoes I see they were just practically kids themselves, figuring out this life day to day.

I texted my mom and asked her to send me the other pages that it was so fun to read, and she texted back that she only kept the journal that one day. Well that was a big disappointment! I would have loved to read all about the normal days of my childhood from my mom's perspective. Her thoughts, concerns, attitude and just view on our life, the life I remember so fondly.

Because of that incident I've been encouraged to journal more in my life. I have no idea what the world will look like when my children are older, but I think it would be so neat for them to have memories of what the world looked like when they were little, when their parents were new to this parenting thing figuring it out every step of the way.

I would like to make a commitment to write more just day to day memories but I've never been good with commitments so like I do everything I will just take it day by day. I want to be more active about writing down our memories and journaling our pics. I want my kids to not just look back at the pictures but to look at the background, to see that our house was usually messy, and some days we had bad days, and that's ok, that's normal!

So today I made an effort to take pics throughout the day. Nothing extraordinary happened and it was pretty much a regular run of the mill day, but everyday is different and I want to do my best to record the memories both the big and small.

So here was our day Wednesday October 1st.

I started my day at 5:30 by waking up for boot camp. I've started going with a friend recently and I'm really enjoying it. I have seen NO difference in my body but I also continue to eat like a person who hasn't seen food in a week. It could be the fault of nursing, or perhaps eating like a cow for a year while pregnant. Either way I've still got a ways to go before I get into my regular clothes again. But boot camp is fun and it's nice to be awake before the family.

I got back around 7:10 and started picking up around the house while Luke got ready for work. Shortly after that the kiddos woke up and we started our day.

Eli has school on Wednesdays so our morning was a bit more hurried than other mornings. Luke left for work while Annie and Eli enjoyed their breakfast.

Cereal for Annie

Waffles on the floor while watching Daniel Tiger for Eli

I dropped Eli off at school and met up with Luke for Eli's "parent teacher conference". It was a little funny to have a "conference" for a three year old but I'm glad his school makes the effort to keep parent's connected. Plus it was good to spend some time with Luke during the day.

 Then I went to run some errands.

Around 11:00 I went to get my hair done. The other day I was thinking about the days when I would get my hair done every 6 weeks on the dot. That is a DISTANT memory now. I get my hair done about 3 times a year at tops. And that's just if we have extra money to put towards it. I hope to be blonde again one day when I can handle the upkeep but for now brown hair is easier to maintain.

A friend from bootcamp did my hair, it was nice to visit with her. She homeschools her kids so her young daughters were more than happy to watch Annie most of the time. It was a nice couple of hours.

After my hair cut and color I went home, ate a fast lunch and then went to get Eli. He had a great day at school (as usual).

 After I got Eli we stopped at Braums to get chocolate milk (a necessity in our house). He really wanted to drink it in the store but I needed to get home to feed Annie so I asked for a cup and poured him a cup right there in the store so he could feel like he was drinking it there. I felt half genius and half ghetto. Which could sum up my life.

Then we came home and played in the playroom for a bit and then outside for awhile.

Then Luke came home and we ate dinner that I had put in the crockpot earlier in the day (HOLLA). It was not a peaceful dinner but rather one filled with "life" (that's a good way to say it). Eli didn't want to eat and Annie was screaming in between bites.

Eli and Luke went to church and Annie and I went to Target to get our weekly necessities. 

We all arrived back home around 8:30 in time to start bedtime and get the house picked up for the night.

On a whim I purchased Gone Girl on my Kindle so now I'm going to read that. Well it wasn't really a whim but rather seeing 200 commercials for it and deciding I should read it.

So that was our day. We stayed busy all day, but it was a good day!