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Parenting Tips

Let’s preface this first parenting tip, with this: I’m not an expert, nor am I mother of the year, but I’m 3 kids deep & I’ve found a few tricks that work.

Nap time + 2 year olds can sometimes spell disaster.  They’ve got a mind of their own & are willing to fight tooth and nail for what they want…mine is going 6 weeks wearing nothing but bathing suits.  All he actually want is a little control. I’ve given him control on the bathing suits, because who really cares?  Now it is this great conversation starter wherever we go.

But nap time, it is happening & so I’ve shifted the control somewhere else — Do you want to race or have a piggyback ride to bed?  Today it was a piggy back ride.  I’m happy because it is headed to him taking a nap & he’s happy because he got to control how he got there.

I’m all about saving myself from a few negotiations, hopefully this helps save you from some as well!

Survivor Application Video…Or the beginnings thereof.

My little brother, Kevin & I have always joked about applying to go onto Survivor, naturally when we were in Hawaii, we started shooting video clips.  Enjoy my mom, dad & husband in the background…some more annoyed than others with our antics.  For your viewing pleasure:


September 19, 2014 - 9:35 am

Brimley - I was literally laughing out loud watching this. You guys are too funny!! I love your family.

Basic Cookies Dressed Up

Cookie Recipe

I love a basic cookie & I have 2 or 3 that are my go-to.  This one is my most-used & most-loved basic cookie with a fancy twist.  Make your favorite basic cookie — here’s the recipe for mine:

Maury’s Oatmeal Cookies

1 pound butter — at room temperature

2 C brown sugar

2 C white sugar

mix together, then add

4 eggs — at room temperature.  Mixing each egg in one at a time

1 t. salt

2 t. baking soda

2 t. baking powder

2 t. vanilla

Mix together & then add

5 C Old Fashioned Oats

4 C flour — mix these last two ingredients alternating.  1 C oats, then 1 C flour until you’ve added them all.

Chocolate chips — I made these regularly without chocolate chips as well & is how I made them for these.

Bake at 400 for 11-12 minutes, depending on cookie size — I make mine big.

Cookie Recipe

Once you have them baked, put them in the freezer to harden them up for at least an hour.  Then pour semi-sweet chocolate chips into a microwave safe bowl.  Melt them by cooking for 30 seconds, then stirring & cooking an additional 30 seconds until melted.

Remove cookies from the freezer & spread with chocolate.  While chocolate is still ‘wet’ sprinkle with salt.  You can eat them with the warm chocolate & cold cookie, or put them back into the fridge to harden up the chocolate.  I usually don’t waste anytime, popping a few into my mouth!



Mom Business

This summer has probably been one of the most fun & tiring summers of. all. time.  So many balls in the air all. the. time.  Such is the life of a work at home mom.  Mom business I like to call it.  The business of being mom & running a business all at the same time.  While it leaves me absolutely exhausted each & every night, I love every single bit of it.  I’ve always been business minded & having Kevin come home has only added to it.  We had summer work days & spent a decent amount of our Hawaii vacation, more on that later, discussing big & little ideas.  It’s been a fun process to get to know the adult version of Kevin since he’s been home.  I sometimes forget how much younger he is than me & think he should have some of the same knowledge as me tucked under his belt & then I remember he was 8 when I was actually acquiring some of that knowledge.  We’ve had late night brainstorm sessions & he’s motivated me to work a little harder & think a little bigger.  Can’t wait for the things we will drum up.

Olive Lane
The most painful part of Olive Lane for me is this .  ^^^  I feel too old & I know it opens me up for outside criticism.  But as on overall whole, the Olive Lane experience is one I wouldn’t trade.  There have been some bumps & bruises along the way, but there have also be so many amazing & wonderful lessons & insights that I’ve learned.  If I’m being completely frank & honest & overly deep it has taught me more about my abilities, strengths & weaknesses, as well as, the impact I can have on others.  I get that to most it looks like a t-shirt company…and it is, but for me it has shown me what I’m capable of.  As I ponder & am prayerful about my approach it has allowed me to be molded & shaped in different ways that I wouldn’t have received otherwise.  It has satisfied my need to continue learning new things & has kept  just perfectly uncomfortable enough to keep growing.

Among & betwixt summer travels, Olive Lane product development & daily household duties…I squoze in a couple weddings.  It made for some late nights & I’m happy to report that I am now officially hanging up my custom graphic design shoes.  Yes you read that right.  No Christmas cards, no weddings, no announcements.  While I’ve loved the experiences I’ve garnered in that venture, I’m glad to be moving on to new experiences in new ventures.  It feels completely liberating & exciting to close that chapter & open this new one.  My blog will still be here & it will still be called Ink’d, as I try to get all my thoughts & experiences inked on paper, but it will be a more complete & well-rounded look.

Change is in the Air

It’s been awhile since I’ve been in this place & while I needed to step away for a few weeks, I’m glad to be back.  I’ve missed writing & the clarity it brings to my mind.  Right now I could use come clarity & maybe this process will help me.  Tomorrow one of my very best friends, who lives two houses away is moving across town.  In the big scheme of life, it’s not a big deal, but today feels awfully heavy.  Eight months ago my sister made the same move & it seems like my heart & soul are all across town.  I will adjust & it will be great.  But it leaves me feeling antsy.

I think every year about this time, I start to get antsy & these other variables aren’t helping.  After a long hot, summer of travels & over all schedule upheaval, we start school & routines start to come back & I start to want a change.  Something new.  A challenge.  An experience.  And so I start looking at houses, careers & ideas that might satisfy my appetite for variety.  And nothing ever turns up & by that time, it’s fall & the change in weather is just the change I need & my ansty-ness just floats right out the window.

This year, this day, I’m trying to remember that.  I feel like Scot & I are at a crossroad in life.  It’s probably a crossroad I just made up in my head, but as time has marched on I find ourselves in a different stage of life.  Which always brings some growing pains along with it.  With two kids in school & no ‘baby’ in the house, I find myself with more time on my hands than I’m used to & I’m not quite sure what to do with it.  Today, I’ll use some of it to take a nap, but overall, I’d rather create a project to work on.  Something that will benefit, my heart, mind & soul.  That will enrich my family & my home & be a tangible evidence of my time well spent.

I have a couple ideas, naturally, and some are probably better than others, but I think I’m ready to get started.  Stay tuned as I fine tune all this bursts of thoughts & ideas.

August 29, 2014 - 2:26 pm

Tahnie - Can’t wait to see what you come up with!!!