Thursday Things I Love: Kitchen Helpers, Little Treasures, and Red Hair

It’s been a good week. Some good changes. Some good, normal, every day stuff. Personally, I’ve been learning a lot. Motherhood continues to refine me. And I’m just so happy to get the chance to come here, day after day, week after week, and share my life with you all. Thanks for reading. Seriously.

This week, I loved…

These Little Kitchen Helpers

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In November, Mike was elected as our village’s city counsel treasurer. He had a meeting one night this week, so in an effort make sure I would actually have dinner on time for him to eat before the meeting, I made a veggie lasagna for us at 9 am that morning :-). Theo loves to help me in the kitchen and I love to include him anytime I can. He has picked up quite a few kitchen skills over his short life, and I know this time in the kitchen with me will pay off in spades in years to come. (To the woman Theo one day marries, I would just like to say YOU’RE WELCOME.)

In between lasagna noodle layers, Theo would run back to his little make-shift grocery store that he and Oliver had set up. He would charge me for all my ingredients and run it along his little conveyor belt. ($49 for a small container of thyme? Really? This kid is cut is a shark.) It can be crazy having all three kiddos in the kitchen with me, but I genuinely love it.

This Girl Time

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I love including Bea in everything. Evvvvverything. She’s my girl! I had her next to me the other day while I sat at my dressing table to get ready. Putting my makeup on never felt so sweet.

This New Smoothie Recipe

We eat breakfast-for-dinner fairly often. It’s just so yummy! I made my favorite baked eggs dish, some sausage for the guys and my veggie sausage for me, and blended up some fruit smoothies right before we sat down. I tried a new recipe and really enjoyed it.

Blueberry (or Strawberry) Shortcake Smoothies
1 C almond milk
1 C frozen blueberries/strawberries
1 banana
1 graham cracker
Blend and enjoy!
(I doubled the recipe to serve four)

This Coffee DateIMG_0667

I invited my grandma over to have coffee and cookies with me one afternoon while the boys slept. I LOVE this picture of her and Beatrice.

These TeenagersIMG_0594

We gave the boys our old cell phones to play with. It cracks me up to watch them play on these phones that have absolutely zero battery life and zero service. (These are dead cell phones I’m talking about.) And yet, they will sit there and act like total teenagers. Lord help me.

This Little TreasureIMG_0591

Occasionally, Theo will return from his outdoor adventures with a treasure for his momma. I cherish these little rocks that he brings me. He is always so proud of himself and so excited to give them to me. I make a big fuss over the treasure and proudly add it to my collection. I display all of these little tokens of Theo’s love on the windowsill above my kitchen sink. Theo isn’t overly affectionate, so these gestures mean the world to me. It’s Theo’s way of letting me into his world a bit. Into the things he loves. Into the things that mean something to him. So – they mean something to me. They mean so much.

This BondIMG_0765

Theo was praying for our lunch. Oliver was repeating what Theo said. It was so sweet, and they were cracking me up SO much, I had to document with a photo. Theo asked God to “help Oliver to listen.” I was dying. Oh these two.

This FaceIMG_0544

This Hair ColorIMG_0717

I had a hair appointment this week and I asked my stylist for a few blond highlights to “freshen up my look.” She just looked at me for a second and then asked, “have you ever thought about going red?”

Well, I’ve thought about it, but I’ve also never thought it would look good! I trusted her judgement and told her to just pick out a color and go for it. I was ready for a change, and the whole spur of the moment suggestion excited me. She looked a little shocked when I said yes, so I double checked that she really thought it would look good. She said absolutely she did, she just wasn’t used to people actually taking her up on her bold suggestions.

I love what she came up with. I never in a million years would have picked this out for myself, not thinking that it would look right. But that’s part of trusting the experts and taking leaps of faith. Love.

Side note: My stylist told me that this color would really make my makeup pop and she was so right. I look forward to experimenting with my bold lipsticks in the weeks to come!

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These New Beauty Products

I hit the motherload at Big Lots the other day.

So the bottle of conditioner on the left is going to be used as…wait for it….my shaving cream! I stopped buying shaving cream a few years ago. Conditioner leaves my skin so much smoother, adds much needed moisture, and I can buy a conditioner that has way less additives than commercial shaving cream. And this bottle was a $1. And it will probably last me a year. (Who am I kidding. I NEVER shave my legs. This bad boy will be in my shower when I go to shave my legs for Theo’s graduation.)

The conditioner shown in the photo on the right is a nice, inexpensive drugstore brand that I like because it has very few ingredients, and is free of a bunch of things that don’t need to come near our bodies. I specifically chose this one though because it was “color safe.”

Next to the conditioner is….my first bottle of hairspray. Like…EVER. I feel so proud. So grown up.

And then – you know how I mentioned that I found a fun, beauty vlogger on YouTube? Well I watched her tutorial on how to get a perfect, winged eye and I was like, I NEED to do that. And if you have been struggling with your eyeliner lately, check out this video from Hello Giggles. It had me laughing so hard because, well, it’s basically me trying to put on makeup.

But anyways, so I wanted to try this whole winged eye look but I didn’t have the liquid eyeliner. So when I was at Big Lots and saw the above liner for 99 cents, and then noticed that it was blue, I snatched that sucker up and marched to the check out line without a second thought. Done and done.

Here’s the thing. I’ve started to notice a few things about myself. I remember hearing from other people that their thirties were their best years, and I’m beginning to see why. I feel like I’m finally hitting my stride as a person. As an individual. As – me. You know how when you are trying to figure out “who you are” and you inevitably pick up personalities, hobbies, and lets be honest – people, in your quest to figure out what works?

It’s like in the movie Runaway Bride when Julia Robert’s character realizes that she has NO IDEA what kind of eggs she likes because she just always eats them cooked according to the preference of whoever she is dating at the time. That scene has always stuck with me. I mean, I think I saw that movie like, what, 15 years ago? And it’s still a powerful reference for me. This idea that, if we aren’t careful, we can go through life doing things and being someone that isn’t really who we are. We are just mimicking someone else.

But lately, I found a lot of freedom – boldness even! – in letting go all of the things that I’ve picked up over the years that aren’t me. But also, I’ve revisited a few things that I let go of because I was trying on other things to see if they worked. (They didn’t.)

Maybe that is the beauty of your thirties. You know what you want to wear and you wear it. You know what kind of people you want in your life and you let go of those who aren’t it. You know what kind of eggs you like and you send them back if they come to you all runny and disgusting. You say yes to big, red, bold hair. Because that’s who you are. You aren’t a “I’ll take a few safe highlights, please,” kinda girl.

You aren’t afraid anymore.

6 thoughts on “Thursday Things I Love: Kitchen Helpers, Little Treasures, and Red Hair

  1. I love this post! First of all, your hair does make your makeup POP and you look gorgeous! What does Mike think? Love the picture of the boys with their cell phones – that’s hilarious! And yeah, I love being 30 too. It feels so much better and much more settled than the 20’s ever did. I feel the same way about celebrating our 5th anniversary – like it validates our marriage somehow. So you just order your eggs however you want them! 🙂

    • Thanks Whitney! I love my new hair and have had fun experimenting with bolder lipsticks already. You would be proud ;-). And growing up aint’ all bad…although I’m a huge fan of this bill paying business, lol.

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