Friday, 19 December 2014

3 Free Christmas Printables

Three Free Christmas Printables

     This holiday season I have been singing Christmas carols. As a matter of fact, I have been singing them quite a bit. For the most part that is because I know all the words, and when you have an infant, singing kinda becomes part of your daily routine. I also LOVE Christmas music, and we certainly have our favorites in this house! I sing during play time, I sing during dinner, and I softly sing her to sleep at night.
    Last night, while humming the all too familiar tunes while she drifted off on my lap, I came up with an idea. I designed some printables for my little one’s nursery; my favorite lines from the three Christmas songs I sing to her at night as she drifts off to sleep. I love the idea of seeing the words of these lullabies every year that I sang to her while she slept in my arms her very first Christmas.
    I figured the best thing to do would be to share these with everyone, so I do hope you enjoy them! Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays!

Away In A Manger Free Christmas Printable

Oh Holy Night Free Christmas PrintableSilent Night Free Christmas Printable

Saturday, 13 December 2014

Why Mommytard is my Hero.

Why Mommytard is my hero.
    For those of you who haven’t heard of the Shaytards, this might be a little confusing. For those of you who follow Colette Butler, aka Mommytard, aka Katilette on YouTube, I’m sure you can understand and appreciate what I am writing about.
    Mommytard is one half of the Shaytards parental units. Her and her husband Shay Carl post daily vlogs showcasing the crazy adventure that is their every day. They started with nothing, and let us watch as they struggled and succeeded in their career, and life as a family. For over five years now she has shown the female audience of the Shaytards how she works to be the best mother and wife she can. I have watched this lady parent three, four, and five kids, and do it all with style and grace. I don’t mean to get all fluttery and lovely about the topic but I can honestly say she is a role model when it comes to mommyhood. From food to fashion to fitness, she’s entertaining and inspiring. Here are the top reasons why I have chosen Colette Butler as a personal role model:

  • She is so full of energy. For a lady who doesn’t drink coffee, she has pep in her step, and I admire that in a mommy. How she manages to keep up with the needs of all the people in her life and still find time to haul her butt to the gym or curl her hair I’ll never know. Mommytard if you ever read this, tell me your secrets!

  • She’s genuinely humble. You can see in the videos just what I mean when I say genuine, too. Her religious upbringing has instilled in her an understanding and gratitude for what God has blessed her with, and because of that she is reluctant to gloat about things. I love that about her. Speaking of religion, that brings me to my next point:

  • She isn’t afraid to speak up about her religion. This is a bit of a hot topic in their comments section (especially for the trolls), but that doesn’t stop them from talking about it anyway. Not in a shove-it-in-your-face conversion attempt either, but in more of a dialogue way. She has said before many times that she understands many people believe the Bible is a made up story, and she is fine with that. All she asks is that others understand that she believes that story actually happened, that’s all.

  • She tries to eat healthy, but doesn’t always succeed. I love that I can (and have) gotten some great healthy recipes from her. (Quinoa salad has probably been my favorite so far!) For the most part there are always veggies and lean healthy foods on her family table, but I also love that she’s been caught more than once with a chocolate milkshake in the cup holder or a take out bag full of tacos, or even package of Fudge Covered Oreos in her cart. Makes me feel less guilty when I have the occasional indulgence.

  • She is still learning as a parent, but is also a fountain of knowledge. For those of us who are just getting our feet wet as parents, I just love watching how other mothers raise nice kids. This one is probably one of the bigger reasons I love Colette, her mothering abilities. She is a wonderful, loving mother. She teaches wise lessons to her children but makes sure life is fun all at once. At the same time however, she admits that she is still learning, and afterall, she is. Her oldest (Gavin, age 11) is a perfect example of a terrific child, but he is far from grown up. And with 4 more so far, she has lots of years left to go.

    Do I sound like a fangirl yet? I guess in so many words, I look up to her as a person, because I see her struggles and triumphs as a mother and wife. The honesty and openness of her and her family’s daily blogs are a positive outlook on life, and an entertaining way to spend 15 minutes of my day. I’ve come to really admire her!

Monday, 8 December 2014

5 Questions From a Brand New Blogger

5 questions from a brand new blogger

    All of you out there have been in my shoes. I’m new to the world of blogging, and I’m blindly posting and linking and sharing and making what I hope are half decent graphics. I suck at photography and in fact, I don’t even currently have a functioning camera other than my cell phone, let alone one of those fancy DSLR cameras. I’m finding my niche, posting what I hope everyone will enjoy and praying to the blog gods for a shot at going viral. I did purchase a domain name but have no idea how to use it on Blogger. (I read many instructions, but still can’t seem to make it happen.)
    I have been using Blogher to promote my blog (which I write on Blogger), and after taking a week off (due to Christmas decorating, a fussy baby and a little frustration that I can’t manage to get more than 10 pageviews) wasn’t I shocked (and delighted!) to see that my last post had in fact been selected as a feature post on the family section of Blogher! Over 600 views and 10 comments! That lit my fire and now I want to know how to make this happen. How do I do it. How do I become a professional blogger, instead of someone who pours her heart and soul out to roughly 6 people, including my husband. Although I would like to monetize my blog, I’m not doing this for big bucks. Just some form of payoff for a job well done:)
    So now I throw it out there to other bloggers. The questions I’m sure everyone has asked at some point. Heck, maybe there’s even one or two of you who might find the answers you are looking for here (if anyone answers, that is!)

  1. What platform do you use, and how do you link it back to your favorite blog network? I’m all about Blogher. It is a terrific place to network, but I’m not sure how you ladies do it. Do you only use one platform? I’m guessing many of you use (and will swear by) Please explain how you cross promote from one platform to another, or if you even bother to use more than one.
  2. How much time do you spend on your blog every week? I’ve read the average is about 10 hours, and I’m curious if there is a correlation between the amount of time spent working on your blog, and your success.
  3. What do you consider successful in terms of views? When I saw my post got over 600 views, I felt like the most successful blogger on the planet! I would love it if all of my posts could get that kind of attention. Unless the norm is 10,000 views, in which case I’ve got a lot of work to do.
  4. Google Adsense or other? I understand (or at least I think I understand) that on Blogger, you must be careful how you make money, since Google owns the rights to your blog. I am very interested in Google Adsense, but I understand Blogher also pays for ad space. What is the best one? Can I do both?
  5. How long did it take to see results? I know success doesn’t happen overnight (Unless you’re Grumpy Cat). How long did you work to see results?

    Okay, I realise this is less of a blog post and more of a Q&A, but hopefully I can gain a better understanding about monetizing a blog, so that when I am ready to sign on the dotted line so to speak, I will make the best choice for me:)
    Also, please feel free to leave and tips or questions of your own in the comments, I hope we can get a great discussion going!

Sunday, 7 December 2014

Please Go To Sleep!

Please go to sleep!
    We are going through a growth spurt. Little Miss, that is. Or maybe she’s teething? I don’t know, but I can say that since putting her to bed at 7:00, a mere two hours ago, she has woken up three times crying. Last night was no better, waking up at 12:30 and not falling back to sleep until 3:30 in the morning. No doubt, this is hard. You are sleep deprived, and your once perfect sleeping angel baby is now a screaming ball of tears every time her precious head touches the crib mattress. As I type this she is upstairs, crying into her daddy’s arms after waking up alone in her room. These times are some of the most trying times a parent goes through with their infant.
    That being said, they are also some of the most precious moments (although I hardly felt that way last night!) simply because it is a reminder that your child needs you. Only you. She isn’t hungry, she is hurting, upset, and needs the comfort of your arms to fall back asleep. I have to admit, last night I was frustrated. I have been trying to eliminate my part time co sleeping, and it had been going very well. A little too well… After three hours of rocking and nursing and laying down and picking up, I brought her into bed with me and she was asleep in minutes. I spent three solid hours trying to get her into the crib when all she wanted was to feel me next to her for comfort. she slept well after that, waking only once for a few minutes. She slept until 8:00, which is sleeping in compared to her usual 6:30 wake up.
    As I lay in bed this morning with her head resting against my arm, I counted my blessings. Through the grace of God I have been given the joys and trials that come with being a parent, and if that means a few sleepless nights and plenty of tears, then brew me a pot of coffee, because I will go through it whenever my little girl needs me. It’s my job as a parent, and I am happy to do it, because it makes her happy.

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