Wednesday, August 31, 2016

What's Up Wednesday

It's the last Wednesday of the month again, and that means that I am back with What's Up Wednesday.  As usual, I'm linking up again with Shay, Mel, & Sheaffer.

What we're eating this week

With school having just started, along with soccer, and Gracie's current volleyball schedule, we're pretty much eating anything that is quick and easy.

Although tonight we are having tacos for Emma's birthday party.

What I'm reminiscing about

 Well, since today is Emma's birthday, I'm reminiscing about the sweet little baby who entered my world 9 years ago today, and what a joy she has been to our lives.

She's sweet, sassy, confident, patient, kind & she's a determined little thing.  I often have to remind her how old she actually is, for I fear she thinks she's in her 20's.  She likes big shoes, getting her nails done, highlighting her hair, and playing cards with us women.  She likes to cook, hold babies, ride horses and chat.  This girl doesn't usually get tired, and is always wanting to go go go.  I can't usually keep up with her.  I want to be her when I grow up.  :)

What I'm loving

I absolutely love this vest.  It's just as cute in person, and I am so anxious to wear it.

We drove over to Spokane last weekend to finish up our school shopping, and I picked myself up a new water cup.  They were having a sale, so I got it for a good price, and I'm loving it so far.  My favorite thing is that it doesn't sweat, and it holds 32oz and it still fits in my cup holder in the car.

What we've been up to

 My life revolves around everything that these 3 are doing.  With that being said...
We got ourselves put together and headed back to school

Jesse started soccer practice.

Emma's been continuing her piano lessons.

And Gracie has been going to volleyball practice.  Thankfully we are done with the two a day practices.  Woohoo!

What I'm dreading

Early mornings and packing lunches.  Seriously, why is it such a miserable thing to do?  I should play the "glad game" and be thankful we have food in which to pack lunches, right?!

What I'm working on

I'm working on talking Dan into buying Seahawks tickets for just the 2 of us.  A couple of days in Seattle with my man sounds fun.  The last time that just the 2 of us went, it was the 2005 NFC Championship.  It's been a couple of years... I think it's time that just the 2 of us get to go back.  So that's what I'm working on.  ;)

What I'm excited about

 I am excited for crockpot meals, and all things cozy.  I've finally decided to embrace that Fall is coming, and that Summer is on it's way out.

What I'm watching/reading

With the kids having such different sports schedules I decided it was time to download a couple of new books onto my Kindle.

I've started The Loyal Heart, by Shelley Shepard Gray.

Then next I'm planning to read A Heart Most Certain, by Melissa Jagears.

I'll let you know what I think once I'm done.

What I'm listening to

 I just made a Pandora account for the first time, and I'm still trying to get my stations just right.  I'm a girl who grew up listening to a lot of different music, and it seems to have stuck.  My mom always listened to country music, and my dad always liked more hippy music, like The Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, that kind of stuff.  I love Christian songs, and my kids love the newest hits.  So when I say I listen to it all, I'm not kidding.  :)

What I'm wearing

It's been so smokey here where we live because of a forest fire near by.  It makes being outside not so fun, so I've been staying indoors more than I'd like to, which means I'm wearing layers so I can stay warm inside with the AC on, and still be ready to shed a couple of layers to head out of the house when I need to.  Boy, was that a run on sentence.  #ohwell

What I'm doing this weekend

 This weekend is our county fair.  We'll hit that up on Friday so the kids can ride the rides. Gracie has a game on Saturday, and then on Sunday I start up the Junior high/High School, Sunday school class at church. 

What I'm looking forward to next month

Getting back into a routine.  It's hard waking everybody up in the morning and getting them out to the bus.  We were a little big more relaxed in the summer with our mornings, so it will be nice once we start to adjust again and I don't feel like a complete zombie.

What else is new

Just all the new schedules.  Nothing too much otherwise.

Are you ready for Fall?  What's your favorite part about it?


Friday, August 26, 2016

Friday Favorites

Today is our last Friday of summer break.  Eek!  Monday morning, we'll be headed out to meet the bus.  It's always crazy how slow the school year seems to creep along, and how fast summer flies by.  It never ceases to amaze me.  I guess time flies when we're having fun.  So, that would mean we need to have more fun during the school year, right?!  ;)

Onto my Friday Favorites...
Once again I'm linking up with Andrea, Erika & Narci.


One of the boutiques I follow on Facebook (The Mason Jar Boutique), advertised this vest.  I've never ordered anything from this particular place before, but I decided to take a chance and go for it.  It came this week and I LOVE it!  This green is my favorite color to wear, so I'm always super happy when I can find something I love.



Okay, so this is the weirdest favorite for me, but like they say, "If you can't beat them, then join them."  My boys love playing fantasy football every year, and I've decided to hop on board again this year.  We draft on Monday, which means it's time for me to do a little homework.  I beat Dan the first year I played and then lost to him in the finals another.  It's safe to say, the possibility of beating Dan at anything, brings out my competitive side.  The other crazy part of this is, I love sitting down and watching some football, while eating good food, but otherwise I am fairly clueless when it comes to the sport.  I know a couple of players, and a few of the rules, but nothing like my boys.  They know everybody and everything about each player.  That's what makes losing to me so hard.  ;)



Speaking of football, I'm ready to start making this yummy jalapeno dip, and all sorts of good food.



We had an open house last night at Emma and Jesse's school.  Dan went with Jesse and I went with Emma.  I know some people dread going to these kinds of things, but I love them.  I love seeing their teachers, checking out the classrooms, and listening to all the different things that they'll be doing through out the year.  Plus all the new backpacks, school supplies and nervous/excited kids, is just fun.  At our school you don't walk your kid to their classroom on the first day of school, so really open house is the night you get to check everything out.



Just in case you're needing a bit of humor to start your weekend off right, I've got you covered.  These were a couple of my favorites that I saw on Facebook this week.
You know it's true!

Can we all agree on this?  I had never considered this, but not it sure seems like a real possibility.  ;)

Have a great weekend!


Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Life Lately

There's lots going on, but not enough time to blog about each one, so today I'm making it a life lately post. 

 I feel like we are in one of the busiest times of the year.  We're trying to wrap up our summer, we're getting ready for school to start, planning birthdays, sports are starting.  Then to keep a girl on her toes... I scheduled family pictures for Sunday, and I haven't even started trying to figure out what we're all going to wear.  At this point, as long as everyone brushes their hair and smiles, I might just call it a win.

We are officially done with 2 a day practices for volleyball.  Woohoo!  We survived that!  Now lets pray that we survive the crazy sports schedules.  I have a feeling that I'm going to be sitting in town a lot this Fall.  I'm going to need a stack of good books.  If you guys have any favorites, let me know.  At this point, I'll take any suggestions.  I'm not a sci-fi girl, but anything else, I'll try.

My niece Layla was born last week and we got to spend a little bit of time with her.  There is nothing sweeter than a baby.

Emma's birthday is next week, but since we also start school next week, we decided to throw her an early birthday party with her friends.  I'm so glad to have it done, so we don't have to add that to our craziness next week. 

 In other news... I'm eventually going to get a chance to check out this Chick-fil-A, that I've been hearing about for so long.  Yay Montana!  ;)

Okay, so help a girl out.  What is your favorite novel or book that you've read?  The one you tell everyone they have to read.  Thanks in advance.  :)


Monday, August 22, 2016

A Tapestry Of Secrets

This story is about a grandmother who is wanting to help her daughter and granddaughter, by sharing a secret from her past.  One that she feels they need to know.  The problem is, that by the time she decides to share it with them, her health fails and permits her from doing so.  Meanwhile, her granddaughter is helping take care of her, and is trying to figure out what the future holds for her and the town that that been home to her family for generations.

This wasn't a book that I would personally recommend, unless you like a slower paced book that is sweet and a little thoughtful.  The best way to describe this book to others would be to say that it reminds me of something that would be on the Hallmark Channel.  If you love watching the Hallmark Channel, I'm sure you'd love this book.

The reason I couldn't rate this book higher, was because it didn't inflict any kind of emotion in me.  There was nothing to keep me on the edge of my seat.  No big climax.  Nothing to get excited, nervous, sad, or scared about.  

I will end by saying, I thought it was an interesting storyline, and I think she is a good author.  I would have just liked to have seen and felt more emotions through her characters.

* I received a free copy of this book from Bethany House Publisher, in exchange for an honest review.  All opinions are my own.

What are you reading right now, and are you liking it?

Friday, August 12, 2016

Friday Favorites

 Today I'm linking up with Andrea, Erika & Narci to show my Friday favorites. 

I decided to share some of my favorites off of Pinterest.  Am I the only one who can get sucked in and spends way too much time on there?  I'm getting some great ideas though, so there's that... right?!


The most fashionable outfit is comfort and confidence. Otherwise known as great jeans and comfy tshirt.:
There is something so fun about a simple white shirt and comfy pair of jeans.  Maybe it's just been a long week, but this outfit is a favorite right now.  Pair it with you favorite sandals and simple necklace, and you're set.


Chicken Club Ranch Pasta Salad! Chicken, bacon, avocado, cheddar... this pasta salad is loaded with the yummiest club toppings!:
 Doesn't this salad look good.  I don't each much for pasta anymore with Gracie being gluten free, but I think I'm going to have to make this for lunch one day when they're all back in school.  :)  I could try it with GF noodles, but it's not quite the same.


 My rule of life: #1 "If you want something you never had, you have to do something you've never done.":
 I love this.  I'd actually love to have a 10x10 print of this.  Such a good reminder!


 I don't know why I find this so funny.


So my most favorite thing this week, is that I finally booked a photographer to take our family pictures here in the next month.  We haven't had professional family pictures taken in 11 years.  Emma wasn't even born yet.  You can't even know how excited and nervous I am.  I've always set up a tripod or had my sister take a couple shots with my camera.  This is huge! 

Gracie starts volleyball today, so we'll be hanging at home this weekend.  I'm hoping for a fun, yet relaxing weekend.  Here's to hoping.  :)

Be Blessed!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Show Us Your Home: Kitchen

I'm sharing our kitchen with you all today, and linking up with Kelly for the home tours.  We are down to only one week left, and next week is backyards.

Our kitchen is probably the most used room in the whole house.  There is always somebody in it or walking through it... always.
  The door next to our fridge goes into our laundry room which also leads out onto our back deck or into our garage.

Our kitchen windows look out towards my parent's house and barn, where there is always some kind of ranch life happening.

We built our house 9 years ago, and I still love my kitchen.  It's not perfect, but it fits us. 

Stop by next Friday to see our backyard.

Below are links to the other rooms that I've shared.

Bonus Room

We are getting ready to head back up for another weekend at the Flathead Lake.  If you want to keep up with us during the week, you can find me on Instagram (jennyclaridge) or Snapchat (jnclaridge).  I hope you all have a great weekend.


Thursday, August 4, 2016

Are you a no-reply blogger?

I posted this back in June of last year, and decided I'd share it again.  If you don't know whether you are, or aren't a no-reply blogger, then chances are that you are one.  :)

Okay, today we are talking about no-reply bloggers.  You guys, I had no idea what that was until Tiffany wrote this post 2 years ago.  I realized that I was a no-reply blogger and hurried to fix it.  It's life changing if you're a blogger.

Who has time to go back to each blog that you read to see if the author responded to your comment.  I know I don't.  If it doesn't come straight back to me by email, then I never know if or how they responded.  It takes enough time out of my day to read the blogs once, but I don't have time to go back twice.

See the thing is... I reply to every comment that I receive here on my blog.  Every single one.  I reply by email unless I see that you are a no-reply blogger.  In that case, I leave my reply on my post, which means you have to come all the way back to the post to read it.  But if you decide to switch over, the reply will come straight to your email, and you can even respond back, which is how blogging friendships are formed.  It's hard to get to know someone through just one comment, but by being able to reply to another blogger, you are able to continue the conversation if need be.

If you are interested in changing this feature, it's super quick and easy.  Just go into your blogger profile, click on edit profile.  At the top under privacy you will click on the little box and put a check in it, where is says, show your email address.  Save and you should be good to go.  Feel free to leave a comment below to test it out and see if it works. 

But in case I've completely confused you, head over here!  :)

I love being able to respond back and forth with fellow bloggers and readers.  It's fun and so worth it.  

Are you a no-reply blogger?


Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Pinspiration Wednesday- Crock Pot Meals

We are nearing a very busy time of year.  The start of a new school year, sports and holiday prep is fast approaching.  It's time to start thinking of fast and easy dinners.

Today I'm linking up with Leigh, Justine and Erica to share my favorites.

I need to start taking pictures of what I cook so that I'll have my own pictures... but since I don't, I found a couple of recipes off of Pinterest that are similar to how I make mine.


 EASY, cozy, comforting, healthy slow cooker chicken chili, set it and forget it! Ready in 7-8 hours. Recipe at

Chili is on a constant rotation at our house.  Everyone loves it, and it's easy enough to make it a bit different.  You can switch out chicken for beef or vice versa.  You can top it with saltines, or fritos.  Add cheese, or don't... everyone can eat it how they like it.  Plus, I like to make a huge pot, so that the kids can take some for lunches if they want or if I need to we can freeze the other half.  If we have people over for football, and I'm in a hurry trying to figure out what to make... chili is usually my 1st choice.

Pulled BBQ Chicken Sliders

Slow Cooker Pulled BBQ Chicken sliders - super easy family friendly crock pot dinner:

My other go to crock pot meal is usually BBQ chicken sliders.  Gracie can't eat them with a bun, (since she's gluten free), so her and I will usually put them on a hard corn taco shell or we'll just put the BBQ chicken right on our plate and top it with crumpled chips.  Again it's one of those recipes that everyone can dish it up how they want, and get a little creative.

To see what else I'm pinning on Pinterest, you can find me HERE.

What is your favorite crock pot meal that you seem to make over and over?