That Special Thing About My Mom {One of Many}

This post is part of a Mother’s Day partnership with Shari’s Berries. I received free product, but was not compensated in any other way for this post. All opinions are 100% my own.

This past Mother’s Day weekend, my parents agreed to have the boys at their house while The Hubby and I went to run a race. If you know my mom, this wouldn’t surprise you in the least.

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My mom has always been the woman who welcomes people in, and of course, she gladly welcomes her grandchildren any time. We are so blessed by their willingness to watch the boys and the ways they make the weekend fun for them.

It was in the original Mother’s Day plans for us to come back from our race and to indulge in some beautiful, yummy treats from Shari’s Berries with Mom. They asked me to pick out some wonderful gifts for my mom that we could all share. But on Saturday, Mom came down with a stomach bug and ended up being quarantined in the basement while Dad tried to corral the crazy that is our boys.

By the time, we arrived on Mother’s Day, Mom was feeling a little better and the Shari’s Berries treats had arrived, but you know how it is with the stomach bug – decadent treats (and taking pictures with them) were not a good fit for the day. I don’t know about you, but when I’ve been sick like that, the last thing I want is for people to be around. But Mom always makes the best of every situation and we were welcomed in as if she had been healthy all weekend. This is what makes her my wonderful mom. She’s not just a good hostess, but also never makes anyone feel like an inconvenience, even in the most inconvenient circumstances.

Shari's Berries Treat Box

Later in the day on Sunday, we opened up the Shari’s Berries treats – because Mom insisted – and enjoyed the scrumptious gourmet chocolate covered strawberries. Fruit and chocolate are always a good combination, but Shari’s Berries takes it up a notch with delicious toppings and lovely presentation!

Shari's Berries

Mom was able to enjoy a treat from the Mrs. Fields box that was a little less rich – the cinnamon sugar cookies were soft and perfect for a stomach not quite ready for chocolate decadence! There was also toffee fudge in that box that I hope she’s been able to enjoy by now because YUM!

Shari's Berries Both Boxes

I wanted to share pictures with you today that captured the welcoming, loving spirit of my mom on that Mother’s Day, but instead my words will have to do. I’m not sure any words or pictures could accurately capture what makes her the mom I love so much. Just know that there has never been a person who was not welcomed with open arms in her presence and her home, even at the most inopportune times. Like when you’ve had the stomach bug and three crazy boys in your house on Mother’s Day weekend.

I love you, Mom. Thanks for being who you are – an amazing example of unconditional love, making the best of every situation.

What makes your mom so special? How did you celebrate her this weekend?

 

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It’s a Henkaa Mother’s Day Giveaway!

I was given this dress as part of Henkaa Mother’s Day celebration! I was not compensated in any other way for this post, and all opinions are 100% my own!

I’ve had my eyes on a Henkaa dress for quite a while. Maybe obsessing a little bit.

A Henkaa dress is the perfect item for any woman to have in her capsule wardrobe because it can be worn so many ways. And a Henkaa dress is the perfect investment for a mom because it can be worn before, during, and after pregnancy – not many clothes in our closet can do that, right ladies?! I wish I had a Henkaa dress when I was having babies!

My first Henkaa dress, the Iris Midi, arrived last week and I’ve had so much fun styling it! The fun thing about the Iris is that is has SLEEVES! Yes, sleeves, but it can also be styled as a sleeveless or strapless dress, too! Talk about versatile!

Henkaa Iris Midi Dress

The style on the left was for a date night with The Hubby! The fabric of the Iris is so luxurious – perfect for getting fancy and throwing on some heels for a night out! In that style, the halter top was made by tying the sleeves behind the neck.

For the style on the right, I went a little more casual with some of my favorite fair trade accessories from (affiliate link) The Root Collective and Work of Worth! This would be a great look for brunch or a baby shower. I love that the sleeves make this dress a piece I can keep in my closet year-round!

I can’t wait to try the Iris in many more styles! Here are a few of the 15 ways it can be worn:

iris-lineup

 

Henkaa has tons of tutorials and inspiration from real women to help you make the most out of your convertible dress. The tutorials helped me figure out how to wear new styles in not time at all!

Did you know Henkaa also has a versatile bag in their line-up? The monogram multi-way bag is perfect as a diaper bag, daily carry-all or travel companion and can be worn as a handbag, cross-body bag, shoulder bag or backpack! Detachable straps and TONS of compartments on both the inside and outside make this a bag you will take with your every day to carry whatever you need – diapers, books, gym necessities, and more!

To celebrate Mother’s Day, Henkaa and I are teaming up to give one Iris convertible dress + one monogram multi-way bag to one of you beautiful ladies! I’M SO EXCITED!!!

Henkaa Mother's Day Giveaway

To enter this marvelous Mother’s Day giveaway, tell me which color Iris dress you would pick and where you would wear it to celebrate Mother’s Day – fancy brunch, moms’ night out with girlfriends, a day of shopping without kids, or something else fun!

This giveaway ends Sunday, May 10th at 8PM CST. One random winner will be chosen and announced Monday, May 11th! Only open to those with a US shipping address. Must be 18 or older to win. One entry per household please.

Happy Mother’s Day!

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Life-Giver {and a KraftyKash Sale!}

life-giving: imparting, or having the ability to impart, life or vitality

God built into all of us as women the ability to give life. When we talk about this in relation to motherhood, thoughts of pregnancy and childbirth come to mind. But the role of a woman as a life-giver goes far beyond those moments of waiting and labor, and most of the time, the life-giving has nothing to do with the physical act of birth at all. In the Five Aspects of Women, Barbara Mouser says:

“All of us are lifegivers. We have a created capacity in our bodies and in our spirits to give life, to nurture, to heal, to comfort, to encourage, to make things alive. Motherhood is important, but it is not the sum total of lifegiving.”

I wrote about the life-giving aspect of women in a series several years ago and all of that still resonates deeply within me, maybe even more so this year as I am focusing on vitality. Not only do I want more life in my days for myself, I want to spread and speak more life to those around me.

Give life. Speak life. That’s the kind of mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend I want to be.

Let’s celebrate the life-giving ability of all women this Mother’s Day.

Life Givers

This gorgeous new leather dictionary cuff from KraftyKash is serving as my reminder that, when filled up with by the Holy Spirit, I can be a giver of life to those around me, especially my family, by the way I speak, act, serve, and love. I can’t believe she was able to find my word, but I also can because God makes things work just like that, doesn’t He?!

Life Giver Close

I love this cuff because it has meaning, but also because the leather and snaps are tough enough to stand up to life as a boy mom and the accents are very feminine! It is also has two snaps to make it adjustable for any wrist size! But the very best part about the work of Kashoan at KraftyKash is the personalization. You can choose just about any word that has great significance to you or the person you are giving it to and she will find it if it is out there!

This would be the PERFECT unique Mother’s Day present! And with that in mind, the vintage dictionary leather cuff, normally $30, is on sale for just $25 PLUS free shipping in the United States when you use the code homewiththeboys at checkout now through April 23, 2014! Go! Order one or two or ten now!

Who has been the biggest life-giver in your life? What word would you order for that person?

 

Thank you to Kashoan at KraftyKash for this beautiful cuff bracelet to review and the sale to share with you! I was not compensated in any way for this post and all opinions are 100% my own!

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REALLY Last-Minute Mother’s Day Gift Ideas!

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Sometimes Mother’s Day just sneaks up on you, doesn’t it? Just because you forgot about a gift for mom until RIGHT NOW doesn’t mean you can’t get her anything at all! That’s the beauty of our digital world!

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Here are five great last-minute Mother’s Day gift ideas to grab for that special mom in your life, even if it IS Mother’s Day morning… 

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1. Sparkly Green Earrings: Catching the Light at Every Turn – A great ebook can be sent right to her Kindle or Nook in a matter of seconds! I just grabbed this one by Melanie Shankle the other day and it is lovely motherhood memoir! Other great motherhood books include The Mission of Motherhood by Sally Clarkson and Hope for the Weary Mom by Brooke McGlothlin & Stacey Thacker.

Go the extra mile: Run to the store and pick up a pair of sparkly green earrings to give with the book!

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

2. A subscription to a meal planning service. Plan to Eat is THE BEST meal planning service I have ever come across and the only one I actually signed up with when the free trial period was over. It makes meal planning, recipe storage, and grocery shopping so easy once everything is set up!

3. Membership to a local zoo or museum. My sister bought a zoo membership for us as a gift last year and as a mother it was one of the BEST presents because we used it ALL the time! It’s good to get out of the house with the kids, but admittance fees to zoos and museums can get pricey! A membership can often be purchased quickly online!

Go the extra mile: Tie a little card or note telling about the zoo membership around a stuffed animal!

Family Fun Cover

4. A magazine subscription. I know everything has gone digital, but I still enjoy flipping through magazines! You grab a subscription to just about any magazine on Amazon in a matter of minutes! My favorites right now are FamilyFunRunner’s World, and Taste of Home!

Go the extra mile: Pick up the latest edition of the chosen magazine at the store and tie a ribbon around it!

5. The gift of helping another mom. Some women just want to be remembered on Mother’s Day but would rather not have a lot of money spent on them. Instead, donate the money you would have spent on a gift to a program that helps moms in need such as the Child Survival Program from Compassion or Mercy House, a maternity home in Kenya!

Go the extra mile: Make a card or certificate telling of the donation in her honor so she knows how much she is appreciated!

And don’t forget the easiest, cheapest, most powerful gift you can give anyone: your words of appreciation! A phone call expressing your love and gratitude will mean more than any gift ever could! Tell that mama in your life just how much you love her!

What is the best Mother’s Day gift you ever gave or received?

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Comfort Food {Five Minute Friday}

Five Minute FridayIt’s Five-Minute Friday with lovely Lisa-Jo!

Set a timer and just write. Don’t worry about making it just right or not.

For me? An exercise in letting go and letting words flow. Five minutes only. {yes, I do set a timer and it quacks like a duck at 5 minutes, which totally makes me smile}

Today’s prompt: Comfort.

And go…

I’m going to keep it real here: When I heard this week’s word was COMFORT, my mind went right to food. Comfort food. And then I made a batch of popcorn on the stove.

It’s not that I need food to give me comfort, but there has always been the comfort of family and home attached to food in my life.

Comfort Food with Grandma

My mom always talks fondly of “Saturday night hamburgers” made on the farm when she was growing up. The hamburgers WERE very yummy, but I think it was more of the family coming together over those hamburgers that produced such warm memories…such comfort.

And she went on to bring that same level of comfort in our home. Tuesday night tacos before Girl Scouts. Large batches of BBQs {sloppy joes} when extended family was in town. Chicken chili, stove-top popcorn, sugar muffins, the list goes on…

It was all YUMMY, but it wasn’t really the food. It was the love being put into the food. The comfort of a mom who cared about home and warmth and love more than perfection or presentation in that food. The food was never more important than the family or company sharing it.

I hope to be passing on that same comfort my mom gave me with our Saturday morning donuts and first day of school chocolate chip scones and… you get the idea.

Comfort can be found in food and home and family…and you gave me all of that, Mom, and still do. We love you dearly!

Comfort Mom

Happy Mother’s Day!

Stop.

And now I’m off to link up this post with the fabulous Five Minute Friday community! You MUST take the time to read the words of these BRAVE writers!

 

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Last Minute Mother’s Day Gift Guide

So it’s the day before Mother’s Day and you haven’t sent a gift to Mom yet…

DO. NOT. PANIC.

In this magical world of ebooks, you can get the special ladies in your life the perfect gift for Mother’s Day and it will be there in plenty of time for tomorrow!

Here are few of my favorite ebooks for moms…

For moms of boys…

Warrior Prayers – $3.99 on sale right now!

Praying my way through this right now! Such a blessing!

For fashion inspiration…

The No Brainer Wardrobe – $7.99

Check out my review here. I seriously think every woman needs to read this book and apply it to her closet. SO good.

For any mom trying to simplify or get organized {aren’t we all?!}…

One Bite at a Time – $5.00

Read my review here. Still working on simplifying, especially as we pack up to move! Simple Mom is steering me in the right direction with this book and Organized Simplicity!

And for every kind of mother out there…

Mother Letters – $6.99

This book is pure beauty – encouragement and inspiration for all mothers. I’m savoring it slowly. Right now, there is a BOGO sale for Mother’s Day! Use the code Buy1Give1 at checkout to get two for the price of one! And a portion of each sale goes to the Mercy House Kenya!

And if you’ve already got the moms in your life covered, maybe you should buy one or more of these just for YOU!

I’m just sayin’…

Do you have any great last minute Mother’s Day gift ideas? Please share!

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*This post contains affiliate links.

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Wonderful Weekend {Multitude Monday}

This weekend just FLEW by, but it was the kind of weekend that was filled with fun and family and memory-making moments! That’s the best kind of weekend!

Besides Mother’s Day, we also had two birthday parties, took a trip to the zoo and got to work on some organizing – which I’m not normally excited about, so I need to run with it!

I could have just kept counting on this Multitude Monday – feeling so blessed!

421. NEW FLAT IRON! {And oh dear, it is a NICE one!}

422. Waking up to the smell of bacon – NOT being made by me!

423. Breakfast cooked by the hubby and eaten with him before the kiddos woke up!

424. Boys who LOVE their daddy and mommy and aren’t afraid to show it.


425. A musical Mother’s Day card that the boys loved as much as I did. {There may have been a little dancing every time it was opened!}

426. Mother’s Day lunch with dear, dear friends.

427. Warmer weather!

428. Water balloon fun. {Thank you Daddy!}


429. Finishing Mission of Motherhood {SO inspiring as a mother!}

430. A boy always thinking of new ways to do things {like blowing bubbles THROUGH the mailbox!}


431. “Mommy, I love you more than Toy Story Legos!”


432. Witnessing new growth in our own front yard.


433. Spontaneous trips to Target.

434. “Mommy, when can we start organizing?!” {out of the 5yo’s mouth this morning – no joke}

435. Building forts out of whatever you can find.


436. Entering this world of homeschool with wonderful friends.

437. Having fun with flip flops.


438. This reminder: “My attitude is ultimately what makes our house a peaceful haven.” {Sally Clarkson}

439. This smile.


440. This charge: “And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your strength. And you must commit yourselves wholeheartedly to these commands that I am giving you today. Repeat them again and again to your children. Talk about them when you are at home and when you are on the road, when you are going to bed and when you are getting up. Tie them to your hands and wear them on your forehead as reminders. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.” ~Deuteronomy 6:5-9

*****

Praying this week is FULL of more blessing that you can count!

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This Mother’s Day…

This Mother’s Day…

I’m thankful that each day is a new day.

I’m learning SO much about my role as a mother: reflecting on how our wonderful mom raised us {and is still always there for us}, watching the fabulous moms I am blessed to call friends as they interact with their littles, and especially from the writings of Sally Clarkson {just finished Mission of Motherhood, starting Ministry of Motherhood next}.

I’m wishing I could drive up to give a big hug to MY mama! {long-distance HUG!!!}

I’m rejoicing with 20+ friends {yes, you read that number right!} who will be welcoming new little ones over the next eight months! A special Happy Mother’s Day to those ladies, especially soon-to-be first-time mamas!

And I’m counting the many, many blessings that came into my life all because of these two…

This Mother’s Day, I feel more blessed than ever to be a mom.

Children are a gift from the Lord; they are a reward from him.

~Psalm 127:3

Happy Mother’s Day!

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