Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Bye-Bye Laundry Piles: Sharing my tips on how I stay on top of the load

 We all have it. For many of us, it's on our floors, scattered on random surfaces, or piled on favorite seats that never get to be sat on. It can be tedious, and some have piles that fill rooms!


 I have tried many things in my laundry experience, to try and make things run more smoothly. Labels, 8 baskets, you know. I think I finally have something that works REALLY well. No more piles of clean or dirty, no more sorting for an hour. It might not work for your family, but I think it should work for very near everyone. I always forget to share cleaning tips and whatnot, and especially since we are eco friendly/no chemicals, I plan to do my best to share more on this topic.

 Anyway, laundry. So it's actually insanely simple (maybe that's why it works so well). Here is what I do:

Each family member has their own basket (I use the colorful 5 dollar rubber totes with handles from walmart. We all have a different color.) I also have a basket for my linens/towels and one for my 'extra dirty' (clothes I use to clean bathrooms, rags, Cody's work pants, anything that touched something that came out of a dog..) 
 Everyone goes about putting anything they wear in their baskets, and anything else goes to their proper baskets. 

When a basket is full, I throw a load in. I wash everything in the basket. No sorting colors. It all goes in. *gasp*(don't worry, there is more.) I wash on cold to accommodate our clothing type and also to be more green. 

To keep colors from running or fading, put 1/2 a cup of vinegar in the rinse cycle. It's really that easy! I promise you it works and everything stays it's own color. And Mackynzie and I recently went on a big shopping trip so our clothes are very new. THIS is the big secret. Eliminates a whole bunch of steps!

  I wash towels/linens in warm with a cold rinse, and my 'gross' in hot (but usually change it to warm mid fill up because  it's hot enough.)

  I also  wash nearly everything inside out. This keeps color better and protects things like designs and buttons. I highly recommend it. I don't flip jeans or socks/underwear. 

 I have 6 wool dryer balls that knock my dryer time easily in half. They also eliminate the need for dryer sheets and keep clothes fluffy, wrinkle-free and soft. In the summer I try to line dry often, but don't care for that crunchy feeling clothes get, so afterwards I pop them in the dryer for 5 minutes with the dryer balls and they feel normal.

Got wrinkles? No need to iron. Throw everything that is wrinkled in the dryer (preferably use balls, but you don't need to) along with a damp cloth and turn on for something like 10 minutes. Take out and hang immediately  Hang up the ironing board ;).

I wash with an Eco friendly soap called Ecos. There are tons of great Eco options out there. 

I also make a home made linen spray for my whole house. I spray on clothes (once put away. I'll even open drawers and give em a spray.), carpets, furniture... anything with fabric. It both disinfects, calms and smells great!

Linen Spray:

-Spray bottle filled with warm water 
-1/4 cup (I just leave the neck empty and fill it up or put about and inch or a little less depending on bottle size.) of vodka or peroxide/rubbing Alcohol.
- 10-25 drops of your favorite essential oil. Lavender is great. I have a sweet orange in mine right now.
-shake up and spray away!

Add a couple drops of essential oil to your drier balls for added scent as well. OR spray rags with vinegar/essential oil and throw a sheet in per load. Bam. Natural dryer sheet.

One of my biggest tips? Do an ENTIRE load at once. Wash it, dry it, and put it away right away. It keeps things easy and doesn't seem daunting at all. Keeps your house free from crazy laundry piles and stops you from collecting baskets of clean laundry. Try it. You will feel so much better, I promise!  

The one basket thing also allows each family member (even toddlers!) to easily put away their own clothes.

I hope this helped someone. 

Happy Laundering! 

Monday, April 29, 2013

Bits + Pieces Mash Up

 I have been keeping pretty busy, and now we are calming down with nothing more than a couple play dates for the rest of the week. I have bought quite the pile of crafts and projects for both Mackynzie and myself, so I`m excited to have time to dive into those now.

 I`m tired, but it`s that good tired, you know? The kind that comes from having a lot of really great days with great friends, and lots of quality family time. I feel the love in my bones and there is so much more to soak up as we go. I'm trying to rise and rest with the sun, so that I can get the most out of each day. Moving back that last hour is proving a little difficult though (Maybe if I got myself to bed when I keep saying I will!).

I have been a little random with this space, but maybe in time I will get more of a flow again. For lack of my 'bits + pieces' posts i'm going to plop a bunch on this one of what we have been up to lately (that is, what I've captured.)

 We have been biking tons, playing with friends, taking zoo trips, spending days in the city, playing at parks and tons more. So much fun. I have also been keeping up with my yoga every day, but if you follow me on instagram you probably have noticed- between the food pics of course ;).

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Grateful Every Damn Day

There is so much to be grateful for.

 It is so easy to get caught in the haze of day to day troubles. We stress and worry and get ourselves worked up over small things, that after a while, can seem quite big. We can get so worked up in fact, that we forget that those things that can seem quite big, are actually very, very small. So small in the big picture. When put up against what really matters. Our families, our health, community, our home, that we get to be a part of this amazing life. That irritating thing, that stressful thing, melts away in the sight of these things.

 That doesn't mean our problems are just dismissed, but how many things could you actually just let go? How many things would crumble apart if you didn't worry over it, or stress about it, or let it drive you crazy? Not a lot-if any.

When we go back to the basics, to what matters, life is overwhelmingly beautiful. It's just inexplainably amazing, and every single person can see it if you let yourself.

 When we stop putting so much of our energy into what makes us unhappy, we will find that we have a whole lot of energy to put into what makes us happy.

I think its a great thing to incorporate into our daily lives. Expressing our gratitude. It doesn't even need to be about 'the big stuff' either. Some people keep a gratitude journal, some people incorporate social media, some people use their religion or spirituality to give thanks. There are lots of ways, but the benefit is the same. You feel better, you do better, you are better when you are grateful for what you have.

 I'm grateful for so many things. I'm grateful for this space right here, and for all of YOU. Thank you for taking time out of your day for me.

Some of my favorite quotes about being grateful and making your own happiness:

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Thursday, April 18, 2013


10 month old Mackynzie. Looking back now I really understand the whole 'they grow so quickly' thing. Look at all those baby rolls!

Easy Chicken Dinner in One Pan

 So easy. Really yummy. Perfect lazy day dinner.

  • chicken breast
  • potatoes
  • green vegetable of choice (green beans, asparagus, broccoli, etc)
  • mushrooms (if you choose. or whatever may be in your fridge. Like peppers or chives or onions or thinly sliced carrot.)
  • butter (or coconut oil.)
  • sea salt
  • fresh pepper
  • Optional but yummy: fresh or dried parsley, dry oregano or an Italian mix. pinch of garlic powder.
 Throw together like shown. Pop in the oven at 350 for an hour (or shorter if your oven is hotter.). Done. Easy peasy. Makes you feel like you spent way more time on dinner then you did. 

Make things easier by spending an hour or so after buying groceries, washing and pre-cutting veggies and fruits so it's grab and go for your entire week!

Starting a Day with Beauty and Happiness

Good morning to a beautiful day!

  I am really enjoying my yoga practice. I can't even tell you all the benefits it has given me. If I go a day or period without yoga it is a night and day difference. It really makes you appreciate the beauty that is always right in front of you. 

 I am by far an amazing bendy yoga lady, but i'm working on it. Slowly. I am learning how to work with and trust my body. Right now I'm working on getting up on my hands and head. Good thing it's called a practice.

 Starting each day with my practice and with focus is the difference between a 'meh' day and a great day. Whether you practice yoga or not, start your day with invigorating exercise! Go for a run, hang out with your favorite fitness dvd, go for a brisk walk. You will thank yourself. Especially later that night as your sitting on your couch thinking 'ha! I already worked out today! BAM.'.

I hope you all have an incredible day, no matter what you're doing. Each day brings us the opportunity to be the best day. We just need to make the choice of whether or not to see it that way.

Fill up your cups my friends.


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

The Library is a Magical Place

She asked where Africa was so we pulled out our (old) globe

 We love the library. Every year, when the weather gets warm, we ride our bike down town every week and we visit the library. Between the two of us, she brings home a huge pile of 20-35 books. We often have the place to ourselves and as I sift through rows of stories, she takes the ones i`ve picked out to approve.

 Reading is such a special, beautiful thing. I want her to devour books with a great hunger. I want her to read whatever her heart desires to learn about. Since she started talking, she has expressed her love of animals (and babies.) and everything about them. When we got her a library card, she was beyond thrilled that she could take as many animal books as she pleased home.

 She is getting older now- two and a half to be exact- and she has started wanting 'real' books. Ones with real photos and facts and information. She listens and asks questions and talks about them. She wants to read them over and over. Jane Goodall is what she is liking best right now. She has also been asking for us to teach her to read. she desperately wants to be able to read for herself.

I thought she was only two and a half....

Slowly, so long as she remains interested, we are starting to teach her the steps to reading. What a little sponge. I pray she never looses her craving for learning. Its such a beautiful thing to watch blossom.

 I have always had a pull to literature, and writing and English classes were what excited me most  (besides theater) throughout school. I love to see her begin to have that pull. Who knows if she will grow to keep that pull, but we are enjoying it and feeding it while it's here.

 The library is a magical place, indeed.

Bits + Pieces (Of Food!)

1. Making Kale chips. They go so fast!
2. Cauliflower `bread`sticks.
3. We made some paleo chocolate cupcakes.
4. We topped them with an avocado chocolate icing. They were really yummy!
6. We were in the city all day, so I tried the new Wendy`s bacon ranch flat bread. I was surprised! It was actually really good and probably as healthy as you`re going to get at a fast food place.
7.Green Smoothie
8. Dinner: Awesome salad with a cucumber dill dressing sprinkled with chia seeds and sesame seeds. Paired with a hot cup of home made bone broth with sea salt and ground pepper. YUM

Thursday, April 11, 2013


"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2013"

Making paleo cupcakes for her half birthday celebration.


"A portrait of my daughter, once a week, every week, in 2013"

Soaking up the warm weather with a baby and a big pile of library books.

Thursday, April 4, 2013


 Sweet baby Mackynzie only a couple weeks old. Fynn has always been her best friend.

 mmmm  I can hardly remember the days of baby squish and that newborn smell...

Monday, April 1, 2013

The Married Life: 2- On honesty and trust

We are back! (sorry, this was meant to be posted last week, but we got busy.) We decided to talk a little about honesty and trust. It's a bit long this week; we were chatty! Still getting the feel for this (it's pretty new territory for us.) so bare with us as we get the hang of this. :)

You can check out our first video here.

Bits + Pieces

 I hope you all had a wonderful Easter everyone! We spent the day at the zoo on Friday, played outside, did our errands, and went for our first bike ride of the year on Saturday, and had a mellow, relaxing Easter Sunday followed by a family dinner. Life is good, my friends.