Tuesday, October 21, 2014

What I did with my year off

I was thinking the other day about graduating from high school and how I had so many friends that were going to "take a year off" before going on to college. I remember thinking...why? Why not just jump right into life! Me? I was so excited to get started!

Since I'm back in college now, that memory came flooding back. And it got me thinking. What does a blogger do in a "year off"? And since most bloggers don't really do that, I thought I would elaborate.

It's probably not what it sounds like. I decided to take a break blogging because we were so busy and I thought that if I wasn't so stretched thin, things would mellow out. And then after it was mellow, I had plans of catching up on all my favorite shows on Netflix. And reading all of those books that were just waiting to be cracked open. Heck, I even started downloading books onto my Kindle app! It was going to be glorious!

And, I'm not going to lie: It was!! But not because I was doing all of those things I thought I would be doing. I still stayed really busy.

Doing this.....

My husband and I went to Europe with my parents.  Going to Europe was everything that I thought it would be. It was completely life changing for me. I still think and talk about it almost every day.

I finished my laundry room. I thought that it would help me be more motivated to keep up on laundry. It didn't help. I'm still just as piled in dirty clothes as ever.

My husband and my friends threw me a surprise birthday party. And it was legendary! I've never had a "grown up" birthday party and I definitely won't forget this one!

We got new carpet in our living room. And for about a day I convinced my kids to stop eating near it. Our family rule is that they have to eat in the kitchen. So they literally eat one inch inside the kitchen. I guess I need to change that rule.

I tagged along on a business trip my husband had to Las Vegas. It was in the middle of Idaho's winter and I was looking forward to 80 degree weather. Except that when we got there, Vegas was getting a cold front and we froze our tails off. But is was so nice to get away for a while! 

We cut a huge hole in our bedroom wall to add in a sliding door. Why? So we could get out to our wonderful hot tub in 3 steps during the winter instead of 30. And to make all of that possible, we also had to build a deck around our hot tub. Have I mentioned before how much I love my husband? He worked dang hard on this project!

I dressed up as a Pioneer and went handcart trekking with a bunch of teenagers from my church in the middle of nowhere Wyoming. And it was unforgettable!

I went on a little bit of a stay-cation with my kids, my mom and my cousin (who both took their vacation to visit us this year).

And the most important thing that I did? I was a better mom. I was busy, but I was less stressed out and anxious. I took my kids to the summer movies every single week during the summer because I didn't feel pressured with my huge to-do list. I took them hiking and for walks around the nature trail because I had time to get out and smell the fresh air. We went on spur-of-the-moment day trips with friends just because. I even (a few times) let them help me cook dinner since I wasn't buried under deadlines. We had a lot of fun! And the mom that my kids had was much better. That's the kind of mom I want them to have.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Meet This Mormon

I haven't been able to blog for quite a while. Life has been keeping this little family of mine on overdrive and something had to give! I've missed blogging quite a bit. It is sort of therapeutic for me to sit down and type something out.

One of the things that has kept me so busy is that I finally went back to school to finish the degree I started forever ago! It's been so fun and incredibly hard all at the same time.  Definitely harder than I thought. I'm glad I didn't know how hard or I may not have decided to go back! Haha! My degree will be in Web Development and Design with an emphasis in design.  I'm really excited and I'm learning so, so much that would have been useful to know back when I started blogging! It'll be fun to share some of that with all of you!

Anyway, enough rambling, back to the point of the post...life has a funny way of pointing me in the right direction. And when I say life, I really mean God. His hand is so apparent to me in every direction my life takes. Even for small things. Here's an example. My husband and I celebrated our 14th wedding anniversary last weekend. We always plan a little weekend getaway for just the two of us. We love our marriage and our anniversary is a way for us to celebrate it in a big way. We save up for months for our little getaway. And we both look forward to it all year. Well, while we were driving in the car last weekend I was telling my husband that one of my old Halloween posts on this blog was getting a lot of traffic since Halloween is getting close. One thing led to another in the conversation and I thought....why don't I blog anymore? How did that fall off my list of things I love to do? I decided right then and there to pick it back up in my life - even if it is just a small thing. I know some of the reason that I backed off is the overwhelming pressure I felt to always post. If I take that pressure away, then I shouldn't feel overwhelmed. When I got home, there was an email from one of my favorite bloggy friends, Andie, about a project that she wanted to do. The more I read, the more I knew that the Halloween post picking up traffic and the feelings and conversation I had on the way home from our getaway were not a coincidence and that I needed to participate in this project.God's hand was in all of that - just like with all of the other aspects of my life. He was opening up my heart so that I knew what I was supposed to do next.

So, without further ado....here's what Andie wanted everyone to participate in and what we're all so excited to share with all of you!


We belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints otherwise known as "The Mormons". We are proud of this part of who we are! We are excited to team up with over 65+ of us strong... to extend an invitation to see a film. A film entitled "Meet The Mormons". This film is not meant to be an "in your face" - you must join our church film. It is simply designed and produced to uplift and inspire you through six stories of those of our faith who have followed promptings to follow Christ more fully in their lives. We hope you take the opportunity to enjoy this film. We hope your hearts are made light as you feel the goodness that comes from following our Christ and Savior. All proceeds from the film will be donated to The American Red Cross. So not only will you be uplifted and inspired, your money will be going to an amazing charity!!

 We also would like to take a moment and share our personal testimonies, stories of our own personal conversions, and our own stories of how following our Savior, Jesus Christ has changed our lives. The light of the gospel of Jesus Christ offers a joy and hope that only following him can provide. We hope as you click through and read our stories and testimonies of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, you will feel uplifted and encouraged. We are by you! We love connecting with our readers, that is why many of us do what we do! Please be kind and considerate in your comments. It takes great bravery for us to open our hearts and our mouths to share with you such a tender and personal part of who we are. We share because we feel strongly the need to share the peace and the hope that is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

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Isn't it amazing to look at all of those strong women?!?

I want to introduce you to myself. I want you to meet THIS mormon!

My name is Shatzi. I am a wife, a mom, a (sometimes) blogger, a student, dabbler in creativity, and a lover of life. I am a Mormon.  I was born and raised as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. And I'm so happy that I was! I come from lots of generations of strong Mormons who have left me a wonderful legacy to follow.

I know that a lot of you are probably already familiar with what it means to be a Mormon, but in case you aren't, here's what it means to me. It's really, really simple. It means love. One of my favorite quotes comes from one of my favorite people - Thomas S. Monson (here's the link if you want to read the whole thing). He said "love is the very essence of the gospel, and Jesus Christ is our Exemplar. His life was a legacy of love."  To me being a Mormon is about that same kind of  love that Jesus had and that I hope to emulate. Pure love.

It means that first and most important, I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I love my husband and my family. They are my everything. Part of the reason that my husband and I celebrate or marriage so much is because we were married in one of our Temples and that means our marriage will last throughout eternity. We make sure to build our marriage and love for each other now because of that. Being Mormon to me also means love of everyone else. And I mean everyone. All people all over the world. Because we are all brothers and sisters. It means being kind and serving others unconditionally. And I don't just say I believe that. I actually live it.  A big part of my time is spent serving other people. A lot of that is at church. Right now, I publish and print our weekly service folder for our ward. I also work with the Cub Scouts - and I have for a few years. Even before I had any boys as Cub Scouts. I also help with lots of odd and end things that my husband needs. He is currently serving as the Bishop of our ward - which is sort of like being a Pastor. He is the caretaker of over 400 people that live in our area. He spends at least 20 hours a week - completely voluntary - serving the members of our area. And the only reason we do it is because we truly love Jesus Christ. And we hope that by serving others we can help them feel His love for them.

I love being a Mormon and I absolutely know that I wouldn't be the person I am without it. It has helped me be a better person. Be more patient with my kids. Love others easier. Serve more. And find rich joy in my life. I wouldn't trade that for anything in the world!

If you want to hear more about why I'm Mormon or get a copy of the Book of Mormon, email me at shatziweb (at) gmail (dot) com and I'll send you more information.

If you want to hear what others think of being Mormon, there are a whole bunch of us excited to talk about it! Just click on any of the blog links below and you can learn more!

I'm A Mormon #1

Anita | Live Like You Are Rich, Landee | Landee Lu , Tara & Devin | Salt & Pepper Moms , Mallory & Savannah | Classy Clutter Kelli & Kristi| Lolly Jane
McKenzie | Girl Loves Glam , Pam & Lisa | Over The Big Moon , Melanie | Forty Eighteen , Sky | Capital B Adell | Baked in Arizona 

I'm a Mormon #2

Andie | Maybe I Will , Shatzi | Love and Laundry , Robyn | Create it Go , Rachel | R & R Workshop
Tiffany | Feel Great In 8 , Katelyn | What Up Fagens? , Brittany | BrittanyBullen , Ginger | Ginger Snap Crafts , Stephanie | Crafting In The Rain
Chelsey | Cee Me Be , Amber | Crazy Little Projects , Kallie | Smitten By, Elyse, Kristen, Lauren, Steph, Kendra & Camille | Six Sisters Stuff Annette | Tips From A Typical Mom
Kierste | Simply Kierste , Tayler | The Morrell Tale, Jennifer | My Daylights , Cambria | Live To Be Inspired, Danielle | Today's The Best Day 

I'm a Mormon #3

Nat & Holly | My Sister's Suitcase, Britni| Play.Party.Pin , Montserrat | Cranial Hiccups , Heidi | A Lively Hope , Ashley & Meegan | Flats to Flip Flops

Friday, December 13, 2013

Weekend Wonders #69 (plus features!)

Welcome to Weekend Wonders #69! We're so glad you're here to party with us tonight! Weekend Wonders #68 had so many fantastic people and projects. A great big Thank You to everyone who comes by and links up with us every week! You linkers never cease to amaze us with your creativity and skill. You all are so great!!

The most viewed link of last week's party was...

And a few of our favorites were... Christmas Printables!! 
A Typical English Home Brings us two fabulous printables for the holiday season. We have the Holiday Cleaning Checklist and the Letter To Santa Free Printable. Both so appreciated by these two busy Mommas! 
This Dear Santa: Kids Wish List Printable from Busy Mom's Helper is adorably simple in design and we love that it make the kiddos think of gifts that they really need as well as the newest toys.  
Printable Holiday Recipe Cards from I Should Be Mopping The Floor are perfect to have on hand to send guests away with recipes of your culinary brilliance. 
Free Printable: Christmas Gift Tags from The Grant Life make gift giving a fun and personal diy affair. We absolutely love the design here. Just print, cut, and attach with some baker's twine in fun Christmas colors. 
Another great option (and totally different design) are these Free Printable Gift Tags & Gift Card Holders from Second Chance to Dream. Gift cards are among some of the easiest gifting options these days but that doesn't mean they shouldn't be decorated too right? 
Advent calendars are so much for for kids and adults alike. If you don't have one already this year, here's a Free Advent Calendar Printable from Sweet Bella Roos
And last but not least we can't forget about printables for decorating. Here's over 10 free Christmas printables to decorate your home from Some Of The Best Things In Life Are Mistakes. We particularly like the chalkboard printables!
Fabulous stuff everyone! Don't forget to grab a feature button!
And now on to this week's party...

The party will be open until Wednesday at midnight and we'll both be sharing our features at the party the following week. We will also be pinning our featured posts on Pinterest, into our Weekend Wonders Features Board.
**Note** As of now, we will not be sending out an party email reminder anymore unless specifically asked to do so. If you enjoy the reminder, please email Jessie at (jessicasmith @ thethriftinessmiss . com) to be included in the party reminder mailing list.
Don't forget to grab a party button for your sidebar and/or party page and help spread the word!
Now link up and have fun! We can't wait to see what you've been working on this week!

Friday, December 6, 2013

Kid Craft: Glitter Snow Globes

I made these fun Glitter Snow Globes for Sugar Bee Crafts a whole year ago! It's crazy that time has gone so fast! By the time I could publish them on my blog, it was too late for the season, so I decided to save them for this year!

glitter snow globes

These are so fun and easy to make! Here’s what you need:

snow globes supplies

Baby food jars with the labels removed (WD-40 is amazing at removing label residue! Also, I pre-spray painted the lids for the kids)
Glycerin – you can get this at any pharmacy
Glitter and Confetti
Waterproof ornaments
Hot Glue
E6000 glue

First, glue the ornament onto the inside of the lid with hot glue. Definitely help your kids with that part if they are young. We don’t want anyone getting burned!

snow globes step 1

snow globes step 2

I had my kids hold the ornament in place for a few minutes until the glue was cooled off.

Next, fill up the jar half way full of glycerin – that’s the secret to getting the glitter to stay floating instead of falling straight to the bottom!

snow globes step 3

Then, add glitter and confetti. If you use confetti, just be sure it’s the metallic kind.

snow globes step 4

After adding the glitter and confetti, grab something to stir it all around really well. Otherwise, you might end up with glitter clumps.

snow globes step 5

Top the jar off with water. You want to fill it pretty full, but not so full that it over flows.

snow globes step 6

Before screwing the lid on, put some E6000 glue around the rim of the jar. That glue is amazing for stuff like this! I would recommend adult help with this part, too.

snow globes step 7

Finally, screw the lid on!

snow globes step 8

Leave the jar right side up until the glue dries. I would recommend waiting 24 hours at least. The glycerin and water will remain separated until you shake it for the first time. Then, it all gets mixed together really well!

Ta-da! All finished!

glitter snow globes 2

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Weekend Wonders #68 (plus features!)

Welcome to Weekend Wonders #68! We're so glad you're here to party with us tonight! Weekend Wonders #67 had so many fantastic people and projects. A great big Thank You to everyone who comes by and links up with us every week! You guys are so great!! Keep up the good work everyone!!

The most viewed link of last week's party was...

We are totally LOVING all of the fantastic Christmas projects and recipes. A few of our favorite posts from last week were...

Winter Decoration {Little Village} from Wesens-Art

Quirky Wire Hanger Holiday Card Holder from Made In A Day


Joyful Glitter Mod Podge Holiday Project! from Enjoy The View

Great stuff! Don't forget to grab a feature button!

And now on to this week's party...

The party will be open until Wednesday at midnight and we'll both be sharing our features at the party the following week. We will also be pinning our featured posts on Pinterest, into our Weekend Wonders Features Board.

Grab a party button for your sidebar and/or party page and help spread the word!

Now link up and have fun! We can't wait to see what you've been working on this week!


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