Thursday, August 28, 2014

How to Back Up Your Blogger Blog

I keep hearing some horror stories about bloggers loosing their entire blog, or maybe Google took it down for whatever reason and my heart just stops for these bloggers.  I can't imagine going through the stress of trying to get the info back.  So I set out to try and find out how I could save my blog and all it's contents if for some strange reason it wasn't there anymore.  Sniff Sniff, let's not even think about that. :(
These steps are super easy.   These steps are for those with a Blogger account, I am sorry I don't know about Wordpress.   Here is the quick 5 Step Process.

The first place you want to go is in your Dashboard under SETTINGS.

Under the SETTINGS tap you will see OTHER, click on that.

This screen pops up and you will choose EXPORT BLOG

Once you click the button you will see a pop up, click DOWNLOAD BLOG

Once you hit that, it will create a file in your downloads.  Mine looks like this.  Each time it downloads it date stamps it so you know if you have the latest content of your blog.  Now it's saved in a nice little file.  But I take one step extra and I copy this file and save it to an external hard drive.  Just in case something happened to my computer I have my basis covered.

And there you have it- pretty simple and pretty quick.  I try to back it up each week. It's so important and hardly takes any time at all.

I hope this was helpful!

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Mom of the Month- Brooke Fueling

So years ago at the ripe age of about 15, I met Brooke.  She was older than me by a few years, she already drove and I was in awe.  Brooke and I were together on our high school Pom Squad which really just meant tons of fun!  She and her entire family migrated to San Diego right after high school, so I haven't been able to see her since but have thought about her often.   I always knew Brooke was a big part the fun from my high school years.

I loved reading Brooke's answers when she submitted them.  The reason I do this is to inspire woman, mostly mothers.  It's hard out there and we really need to encourage each other.  It's hard to balance, to stay on top of things, it's hard to have time for yourselves and it's hard to accept that what you do is enough.  Mothers come in all shapes and sizes, they come from all backgrounds and struggles.  But no matter the differences, we are all there for one reason.  Our kiddos.  We love, raise, hug, snuggle, feed, tickle, pray for and listen to our children.  They are what it's all about.

Here is Brooke's story....

1. How many children do you have?  List ages and names
I have 3 children; Dylan is 15, Savannah is 11.5, and Delilah is 7.

2. Your occupation:
My first priority has been mom and homemaker for the last 15 years, but as my kids were getting older I wanted to do a little more with my time. I went back to school (at night) and got my Landscape Design degree from Mira Costa College. I have practiced part time for the last 3 years. as my life has transitioned and changed through divorce, I'm looking to start another career path...and hoping to invest in a business I recently came across.

3. What is your most strict parenting rule?
My most strict parenting rule has definitely changed! I think that's normal as your kids get older...I no longer demand that my 15 year old son eats his greens or he doesn't get dessert. But of course we still have greens every night and now he eats them without hesitation! If I truly have to pinpoint one, most strict rule, it would be no lying. That can be hard to enforce because no child wants to get in trouble by telling the truth, but I always remind them how important honesty is...especially that they be honest with themselves.

4. What is the best motherly advice you have received? From who?
Someone once told me before I became a parent, "never say never!" And that has rung really true for me. You start off with many good intentions and rules....we'll never let them watch too much tv, or they'll never eat sugar, or my personal request...we will keep a vegetarian house! My kids have taught me a lot about being flexible and choosing my battles wisely.

5.What is the biggest challenge you face balancing yourself and being a mom?
My challenge as a mom has shifted since my recent divorce this year. I would have said something like...keeping a balanced life before... But now I share custody 50/50 with my Ex husband and I have plenty of time to get things in order while they're not with me. Surprisingly a benefit of divorce has been that my time with my kids feels way more like quality time. I can do the laundry and grocery shopping and chores etc. before I get them. I would say my challenge now is keeping communication going smoothly in all directions. Either from them to both parents or from teachers to both parents etc..there is a lot more effort needed to keep everyone on the same page every day. Facing that challenge has become a big priority for me in order to keep their lives feeling normal, healthy and structured.

6. Can you share any mom tips with us?
Mom tips: notes in lunch boxes go a long way, putting on music in the kitchen in the morning keeps the peace and good vibes, and remember to smile every time you see or greet your child, (even if they just come in the room) it means a lot for their well being.

7. What is the hardest part about being a mom?
Staying sane. Period!

8. What is your favorite part about being a mom?
I loved when my babies were young and cuddly and nursing but I love new things just as much! I love that my son tells me and his sisters he loves us every time he gets out of the car for school. I love that my middle daughter is so independent she can make dinner on her own for us and loves to help! I love that my youngest daughter keeps us laughing and entertained every day...and I am SO grateful I get to watch these amazing people transform into their unique future selves! That is the blessing...just being present to the miracle.

9. Tell us a story..... it can be something funny your kids did, it can be an embarrassing thing that happened to you as a mother, it can be your proudest moment, the moment you felt like you were  a good mother...anything you want. 
Last Sunday, the night before my second grader went back to school, we had dinner at the beach. I made a big salad and cornbread and we all piled in the car. Everyone complained a little and was grumpy at one moment or another. We were all wondering if doing the work to get there was going to be worth it "just to eat a sandy dinner at the beach" as my son put it. We argued and kvetched our way to Cardiff. After setting up and hanging out for a bit we still hadn't completely relaxed. It wasn't until after eating that things got fun...we decided to play tag in the dark after the sun went down. There is nothing like chasing your kids and laughing your butts off with some old fashioned tag. We laughed until our stomachs hurt... Watching your 15 year old not be able to catch your 7 year old because he can't run easily in sand and falls quite a bit is pretty hilarious! And I love the look on their faces when they realize mom is not going to take it easy on them..and she can run! When we all got back in the was wondering if it was worth it. That night was a great memory made! 

Thank you so much for sharing your story Brooke!  It was so inspiring and you are just a piece of fresh air!

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Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Vintage Bicycle Clock

I apologize in advance for the picture overload.  But seriously this little nook has turned into my favorite little spot in the house.  After we put this clock up, I sat at the dinner schedule and just stared into the corner.  It's adorable!!

A few weeks ago I finally found a vintage bicycle wheel.  I have been looking for one for almost over a year.  I purchased a clock set at Hobby Lobby but needed a way to figure out how to adhere it to the wheel.  The :"hub" of the wheel kind of gets in the way but you need it to hold everything in place.  So we figured out we could drill a hole through the lid of a paint can, cover up the core of the time piece and then tie it to the spokes.  

First I stopped by my dad's to help me drill the hole.  He drilled, I took pictures.  Thanks Dad!

I also picked up some cute numbers at Hobby Lobby and painted them black.

My sweet hubby using zip ties to link the wheel and the paint lid-clock pieces together.  You just follow the easy instructions on putting the pieces together- we just added in the extra layer of the paint can lid.

This is what the center pieces looks like.  If we have to change the battery, we can just cut the zip ties and replace them.

And here she is- isn't this little corner adorable?

I have a few extra minutes today and the clouds are out- I think I might have to curl up on this little piece and soak in all the cuteness!

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Monday, August 25, 2014

1st Day of School.... for Mom

A couple of weeks ago I shared this adorable picture with you.  I do this for my kids at the start of school and they get so excited to tell me their new "favorites."  Well since my fall classes start today, the kiddos said I had to do my "favorites" as well.  You know just in case you were wondering what my favorite color was.
After a nice 3 week break in between classes I am finally back into the swing of things.  I really was able to get a lot done these last few weeks and more importantly I got to think creatively instead of logically like I have been while in school.  My mind was free and it was beautiful.  In fact yesterday I spent the whole day trying to get some craft and DIY projects out of the way.  My mind was racing and it was GLORIOUS.

So now it's Monday morning and my brain has to split it's time between logically for school and creatively for the blog.  At least for the next 14 weeks.  I am trying so hard to stay up on everything but if you don't see me on the blog for a few days,  I promise I am not far away.

And lastly I wanted to share a big of good news with you.  I received an email from my college that said I was on the President's Honor List for the Spring 2014 semester.  That filled me up with joy and made me so proud.  Not too shabby for a girl who was put on academic probation 17 years ago at my first attempt at college.  I just had to gloat for a few minutes because I am really proud of myself for that accomplishment.
I will keep you posted on my studies and my classes for the next 14 weeks.  If any of you are great tutors send me a message.  I will buy you coffee :)

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Friday, August 22, 2014

Selfie Sunday... from my family!

About 6 months ago my family and I started a little tradition each week.  For the most part my family is here in Arizona with me.  One of my older sisters lives in Texas so I only get to see her maybe twice a year if I am lucky.  The rest of us here, even though we are close in location, our busy schedules keep us apart more than we'd like.  We started Selfie Sunday in hopes to stay connected with each other's lives.  This isn't really to use for social media, it was a way for us to see each other's faces and to keep up with each other's lives.  Sunday felt like a perfect day to do that.  It's nice to see what every one is up to each week.  We have gotten over the fact of no make up, still in our Pj's, kind of day, it's still about sharing and keeping in touch.
Some of our Sundays get a little busy and sometimes it's about 6:00 at night before we realize no one has sent a selfie. With one selfie, comes many more and then we are caught up for the week.

Here are a few of my favorites through out the months.

What fun family traditions do you and your family do to stay connected?

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Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thankful Thursday

In a time we live that is so stressful and negative, it's nice to remember even the smaller things in life that make us happy and also to be thankful for them.  Sure we are thankful for our health, food on the table, our marriage, the kids, but finding the smaller things to be thankful for is a goal of mine.  It's hard sometimes when you are having a bad day or that particular season is a little tougher than most.  So each month I set a few minutes to reflect and find some small things to be thankful for.

Here are my 5....

1. My 3 week Break
Between the end of my Spring classes and the beginning of my Fall classes I had about 3 weeks off.  It was amazing.  Although I wanted to get much more done than I actually did, there were a ton of items on my to-do list that had been there for months.  I could just never catch up during school.  It was a nice break.  My classes start up again on Monday and I will be nutty for the next 14 weeks.  After that, Christmas is here and I get another little break.  I am already making my to-do list for that break. :)

2. Book Advances-Since my school starts on Monday, I need books.  Luckily my book advance showed up and I was able to purchase these ridiculously expensive books.  I am taking a total of 4 1/2 classes (1 class is just 1 credit) but I spent over $300 on books and programs I need for the classes.  I even bought used.  Why do they charge so much?  Ouch, either way I am thankful the money showed up... now I am all set to learn from these really pricey books!

3. Stay-cations
Aren't stay-cations amazing?  They are quick and easy trips, they cost less money but it's just what you need to get over a hump.  We went last weekend and stayed at a resort about 15 minutes from our home.  It was close enough for us but we still had the feeling we were out in the middle of no where.  We all came back, a little more relaxed, with a little more sun and little more happy in our hearts!

4. Sunsets- I was able to cross off one of my 101 Goals last week.  I haven't done anything with those goals in awhile so it was a great feeling.  Back in 2013 we took the kiddos up to the top of South Mountain, grabbed some hot chocolate and some blankets and watched the sunrise.  Well I always wanted to do it again but with the sunset.  Luckily my parents were heading to the top so we tagged along.  It was gorgeous and just a great family experience.  #41- Accomplished 8/10/14

5.Purging- During my 3 week hiatus I had a few areas I needed to go through, clean out and get rid of stuff.  Reagan's room, Hunter's room, my closet, my dresser, the hall closet, the pantry and our game cabinet.  These areas have literately been staring at me in the face.  These areas are seriously big chores.  My closet for instance took an entire day. I took all the clothes out, rearranged them, organized it and made it look beautiful again.  Holy moly I was tired afterwards.  And I am proud to say that I filled a 45 gallon trash bag with old clothes to donate.  Purging feels so good some times.  

We can't forget those small things to be thankful for each day.  What are you thankful for today?  If you have some time today.. pick your 5.

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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wordless Wednesday- Fall Classes are about to start!

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