10

To Give Thanks–It’s A Verb, Not Just A Day

Thanks

Thanksgiving is by far my favorite holiday. No presents, no costumes, no distractions–just us. A LOT of us. Sometimes the house holds 30 friends and family members celebrating and giving thanks together with a pot-luck (Thanks for hosting, Mom!). It’s chaos, but I wouldn’t trade it for anything. So while I’m aware that Thanksgiving was last month, and even Black Friday and Cyber Monday have come and gone, I want to clear out space amid the crumpled wrapping paper and glitter …

16

All I Don’t Want For Christmas: My Un-Wish List

Wish List

When was the last time you wrote to Santa with your Christmas Wish List? Were you 5 years old or 35? I received a few wish lists from the family kids this year (sorry girls, we won’t be buying Shopkins this year but we will have a full day of fun and adventure together) and pondered what I would include in my list if I made one. Then it hit me–instead of wanting more this year, I actually want less.

18

Perfectly Imperfect: The Gifts Of Imperfection

Gifts of Imperfection

Hi. I’m Julie, and I’m a perfectionist. Whether by nature (how many other 6-year-olds take 30 minutes to put their hair up in a perfect ponytail?) or by nurture (how many other parents make their 6-year-old write and rewrite papers until there isn’t a single smudge or mistake?), the description fits me through and through and has been consistent my entire life. I used to think this was a good thing, and now I’m trying to embrace imperfection. How ironic …

14

Your Emergency Didn’t Just Happen Today

Emergency Today

It hits like a ton of bricks. The bad news you knew was coming. Please no, not today. You wish you could have a do-over–go back to bed, wake up, and try again, like in Groundhog Day. But you can’t… Or can you?

28

The What-The-Hell Effect

What-The-Hell Effect

Just one bite… Most of us began yesterday’s Thanksgiving overindulgence with the best of intentions. I planned to eat the healthy stuff and skip dessert. Well, mostly skip dessert, but I’d hurt Mom’s feelings if I didn’t at least try her homemade pecan pie. And it’s good–really good. Just one small piece… And while I’m at it I’ll have to try my cousin’s pumpkin cheesecake, which is heavenly too. And even better with whipped cream. Plus, it’s my niece’s birthday and …

13

DIY: Homemade Household Cleaners

DIY Homemade Household Cleaners

Here it is–the post you’ve all been requesting and eagerly anticipating: How I clean my toilet! Sort of. Last week I wrote about why I clean my own home. It isn’t the right choice for everyone, and hiring someone to help isn’t even an option for everyone. For us, though, it fits with our lifestyle. We try to live simply and make our actions as gentle as possible on both our health and the environment. However, I’m not about to spend twice …

16

Why I Clean My Own Home

Clean My Own Home

Do you look forward to the day your housekeeper comes? Or do you rush around frantically, cleaning up the clutter so the cleaner can actually clean the dirt? Most of my friends and coworkers have a lot of help at home. They have housekeepers, pool cleaners, nannies, landscapers, and meal subscription services, and it works for them, which is fantastic. They have busy careers and hate doing some of these tasks, so they buy back their time and it’s worth every …

20

Southwest Airlines Mega Points & Companion Pass

Southwest Airlines

Who doesn’t love to travel? And who doesn’t love a good deal? Combine them, and I’m happier than I’d be in a room full of brownies! This year, we did most of our sightseeing on foot. It was truly breathtaking (especially the switchbacks at higher elevations) and I’d love to hear your suggestions for future backpacking trips. Next year, though, we’ll do at least some of our traveling with wings. Luckily, we live in a city that’s a huge hub for …