Easy Homemade Pancakes

I don’t eat breakfast often. I love breakfast food but I don’t like mornings! If I’m going to make breakfast it needs to have as few steps as possible.

There are a lot of fast options out there that you can buy. However, I like to be able to control the ingredients and you also save money by making most things from scratch.

Pancakes are very easy to make from scratch. Most mixes are really just flour, baking powder, sugar, and salt. Well and they like to throw in some artificial ingredients but those the ones that matter.

You can make your own mix very easily and then you just have to add eggs, milk, and oil. You can also just use my recipe for homemade baking mix. The nice thing about using the baking mix is it makes lots of different recipes. It’s nice to have a multitasking mix instead of lots of different ones to make and store.

With this recipe you will have fluffy, delicious pancakes in no time!

Easy Homemade Pancakes

These pancakes are light and fluffy and very easy to make!*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Ingredients

Directions

These pancakes are light and fluffy and very easy to make!

  1. Beat milk, eggs, and vanilla in medium bowl.
  2. Add in baking mix. Mix until large lumps are gone and it’s all incorporated. Don’t over mix.
  3. Heat lightly oiled griddle or skillet over medium high heat. *I like to use refined coconut oil to grease my pan.
  4. Pour approximately 1/4 cup of batter onto the grill for each pancake.
  5. When bubbles start to appear and pop, flip and cook the other side.

Tip: Make up a bunch of pancakes at once and freeze for later. Simply reheat when you are ready to eat them.

If you make these pancakes let me know what you think!

Linked up with Motivation Monday and Homemade Mondays.

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5 Resources For Healthy Eating

The other day I talked about making your health a priority. One of the most important things you can do to help yourself and your family live healthier is by creating healthy eating habits.

“Americans eat 31 percent more packaged food than fresh food, and they consume more packaged food per person than their counterparts in nearly all other countries. A sizable part of the American diet is ready-to-eat meals, like frozen pizzas and microwave dinners, and sweet or salty snack foods.” – Factory Foods, The New York Times

Processed foods also tend to be high in sugar, fat and all kinds of artificial ingredients. It’s also very high in sodium, more than 75 percent of the sodium in an average American diet comes from processed food.

Sorting through all of the information out there is tough. Who can we trust? Where do we start? I’m a firm believer in small steps. When we make sudden big changes in our lives we can often get overwhelmed and give up. Small changes are easier to handle and make into lasting habits.

The first step I recommend is learning a bit about cooking nutritious food for your family. Start a Pinterest board and start collecting recipes you want to try and check out some great online resources. Instead of worrying about what you have to stop eating, get excited about all the new recipes you will get to eat!

5 Resources For Healthy Eating*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

5 Resources For Healthy Eating

  • The Healthy Lunch Box– Sandwiches get really boring. This book has great lunch ideas that will help get you out of that lunch rut with healthy food!
  • Plan It, Don’t Panic– I swear by meal planning to help keep my family eating healthy food. This great book gives you all the tools you need to find the best way to meal plan for your family.
  • ListPlanIt: Meals ePlanner– More tools to help you meal plan.
  • The Beginner’s Guide to Zero Waste Cooking– Food waste costs us so much money and is bad for the environment. This book helps you learn to prevent food waste and save money.
  • The 4 Essential Habits of Healthy Families– This free audio course covers several topics including from scratch cooking. The course is really informative and did I mention it’s free! It’s only available until September 6th so be sure to grab it now.

What are your favorite healthy eating resources? Share in the comments below.

P.S. Be sure to sign up for my mailing list to be the first to hear about an amazing healthy living resource that is coming very soon. It will be packed with healthy eating information and so much more. You don’t want to miss it


Linked up with Get Real Party.

Photo credit- yummyporky/flickr

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Making Your Health a Priority

The other day I was writing out my priorities. The first time I wrote them out I had my health pretty far down the list. I thought about it for a few minutes and realized none of my other priorities can be taken care of if I’m exhausted and unhealthy. I’m doing a disservice to all parts of my life when my health isn’t the best it can be.

I rewrote my priority list and put health on the top. This did give me a sense of guilt at first because my health is personal and it seemed selfish to focus on myself before my husband, family or friends. But again I reminded myself that being the best I can be can only help the others in my life.

Making your health a priority will look different for each person as we all have different areas we struggle in. For me I need to eat more veggies, reduce my intake of sugar, get more sleep, exercise more, and lose weight.

I think many will be able to relate to my list. However, sit down and think about your own list for a bit. Do you too much fast food? Are you drinking too much coffee? What issues do you need to address to be healthier?

Making Your Health a Priority*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Tips for Making Your Health a Priority

  • Write down the areas you want to change. Writing things down helps us really focus on it. When you are starting to slip you can go back and read your list again.
  • Make your goals realistic. Saying “I want to lose 10 lbs a week” is not realistic or even healthy. When you make unrealistic goals you set yourself up for failure and disappointment.
  • Tell someone what your goals are. One thing I have learned from the Make Over Your Mornings online course, that I’m currently taking, is that telling someone what you are doing can help keep you more accountable.
  • Create actionable steps. When writing your goals also write what steps you will take to reach them. Don’t just put “lose 10 lbs” put down what you will do to meet this goal. Goals are great but without a plan to reach them it’s unlikely you will. For me I joined the 21-Day Fitness Challenge and made the goal of exercising 30 minutes everyday for 21-days. This is a reachable goal and gives me an action to take to reach my goals of losing and exercising more.
  • Give yourself grace. You won’t be perfect all of the time. It’s okay! Dust yourself off and get back on track.

Bonus: Check out the 4 Essential Habits of Healthy Families audio course for more amazing information on healthy living. It’s a four day audio course full of great tips to help you on your journey. And you have nothing to lose because the course is 100% free! The only catch is you can only get it now through September 6th! You don’t want to miss it so go sign up today.

 

Photo credit:  BozDoz via Flickr

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Fall Cleaning Tips & Tricks

Fall is fast approaching and it’s time to think about doing your seasonal/semi-annual cleaning. Big cleanings like this can feel so overwhelming. Where do you even start?! I know I’m already a bit overwhelmed at the thought of all the cleaning I need to do.

I’ve got some tips to help make your fall cleaning, and mine,  a little bit easier and better. Once you are done you will have a beautiful clean home ready for the new season.

Fall Cleaning Tips & Tricks*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Fall Cleaning Tips and Tricks

  1. Don’t Do It All At Once. There is no way you can get everything done in one day. Depending on what’s on your list and your size home it could take a week or two, even more. Make your list and figure out how much time you want to spend each day. Then just work down your list each day for the amount of time you have set aside for it.
  2. Choose Natural Cleaning Products. Using natural products to clean with will not only help the environment but will also help you breath better and have a safer home.
  3. Work From the Top Down. When cleaning you should always start on the top and work your way down. Dust and dirt may fall as you are cleaning and you don’t want to mess up your hard work.
  4. Donate What You Can. Avoid throwing out things that can still be used. This can make you feel better about your efforts because someone in need is being helped. It also can motivate you to get rid of more stuff.
  5. Give Yourself a Reward. Having a reward planned for when you are done can help motivate you. I like to decorate my home for fall after it’s all clean. I love decorating so this is a great reward and motivator for me. On a smaller scale, a cup of hot tea after each day’s cleaning helps me unwind.

Bonus Tip:  Use your mornings wisely! When your morning starts off right the restof your day is set up for success. I recommend checking out the Make Over Your Mornings online course. It’s a 14-day online course that takes only 15 minutes a day. It will help you to use your mornings better and to set up the rest of your day well. And don’t worry, it’s not about getting up earlier, just about using your time better! If you aren’t sure it’s for you, you can get the first day free to check it out!

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Linked up with Motivation Monday.

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Cheesy Chicken Pot Pie

I’m normally not the biggest fan of chicken pot pie but this version is delicious. It’s a great way to use leftover chicken (or even turkey or ham). You can add whatever vegetables you’d like. We like to use broccoli, it goes really well with the cheese sauce.

The crust is basically a cheese biscuit and is so good. I personally enjoy it a lot more than a pie crust topping. It’s also easier than a from scratch pie crust. I also feel like this is a more kid-friendly dish with all the cheese.

This recipe makes four good size servings. It would be very easy to double and make in a 9×13 size pan.

Homemade Cheesy Chicken Pot Pie

 Cheesy Chicken Pot Pie*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Ingredients
Filling

  • 2 cups chopped leftover cooked chicken (or ham or turkey)
  • 2 cups vegetables

Cheese Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese

Biscuit Topping

Instructions
  1. Melt butter over medium heat. Add flour and cook for about 1 minute. Slowly add chicken broth, whisking constantly. Bring to simmer, whisk occasionally. It should be fairly thick. Remove from the heat and add salt and pepper. Stir in cheese until melted.
  2. Add meat and vegetables to the sauce and mix well. Pour mixture into the pan.
  3. Biscuit topping: Mix all of the ingredients with a fork until everything is evenly mixed. Spread thinly over mixture in the pan. Gaps are okay as it will spread as it bakes.
  4. Bake at 400ºF for 25 minutes or until biscuit topping is golden and filling is bubbling.

This is such a fun recipe to play with, experiment with different meat and veggies. You could use more veggies and skip the meat if you are a vegetarian.

What are your favorite things to have in a pot pie? Share in the comments below.

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Sleep Linen Spray

When trying to fall asleep we want to be as relaxed as possible. A dark room and comfortable bed are essential. Some scents can also help us feel more relaxed.

Lavender is my personal favorite relaxing scent. I grow fresh lavender and tend to gravitate to it for candles and other scented items. However, candles aren’t the safest thing to use while trying to go to sleep and fresh lavender isn’t available all year.

An easy way to use lavender to help you feel relaxed while trying to sleep is a linen spray. Many stores sell linen sprays, including lavender scented ones. The problem with these is the ingredients are often very questionable. Thankfully, it’s really easy to make your own!

DIY Sleep Linen Spray

Sleep Linen Spray- Quick and easy linen spray to help you feel relaxed.*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Ingredients

Directions

  1. Fill your spray bottle almost all the way with vodka.
  2. Add 10-20 drops of lavender essential oils.
  3. Put lid on and shake well before each use.

Note: You should test the spray on a small area of your bedding before use to make sure it doesn’t harm it.

It’s that easy. Just spray on your pillows or your blankets before bed. You can also use it as a room spray if you don’t want to spray it on  your bedding.

I like to use vodka for the spray because it keeps bacteria from growing in the spray and it dries very quickly on fabric. Some recipes like this use water but water can harbor bacteria and it takes awhile to dry.

Feel free to experiment with other scents that you find relaxing and pleasant. Part of the fun of making things yourself is being able to make them how you want.

What scents do you find relaxing? Have you ever tried using a sleep linen spray?

Linked up with Homemaking Wednesdays and Whip It Up Wednesday

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7 Natural Lipsticks

Lipstick has been being used for centuries. Lipsticks in cylinder metal containers, similar to what we use now, were first sold in 1915. During the 20’s and 30’s it started being widely used. Now on average women use lipstick 2.35 per day.

Many lipsticks come with risks though. Studies have shown many lipsticks contain heavy metals like lead, cadmium, and aluminum. Not only can these heavy metals be absorbed through our skin but when we are eating and drinking they can be swallowed.

“It matters because this is a chronic long-term issue, not a short-term exposure,” said Katharine Hammond, a professor of environmental health sciences at the University of California at Berkeley and the lead author of the new analysis. “We’re not saying that anyone needs to panic. We’re saying let’s not be complacent, that these are metals known to affect health.” – read more

Don’t worry these dangers don’t mean you have to ditch all lipstick or start rubbing berries on your lips. There are many great natural options with better and safer ingredients. Here are seven for you to try out.

7 Natural Lipsticks

7 Natural Lipsticks*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

Beautycounter Lip Sheer | Mineral Fusion Lipsheer | 100% Pure Lip Glaze | Juice Beauty Lip Color
Pacifica Devocean Lipstick | Alima Pure Velvet Lipstick | Honeybee Gardens Lipstick

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With all of these great natural lipsticks available you won’t even miss conventional lipsticks! If you have tried natural lipsticks before, which is your favorite? Which of the above do you want to try first?

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5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life

**This post is sponsored by ShutterFly and  contains affiliate links. I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links and I will receive compensation for this post from ShutterFly. All thoughts are my own. **

I’m not a naturally organized person. I need a lot of help in that area! Lately I’ve been working more on organizing my life and my home. Today I want to share how I’ve been organizing my life.

Time management can be hard for me. I’m ADD and very easily distracted. This makes being organized harder for me than some. With my homemaking, blogging, volunteering, and freelance work, time management and organization are key!

I’ve found several tools through trial and error that are helping me be more organized. I want to share five of those tools today.

5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life

5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life

Household Binder

5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life

My household binder contains my planner, information for taking care of my home, my holiday planner, my blog planner, and my address book. Having all of these things together saves space and time.

I made mine myself using mostly free printables. I did just buy a very affordable, print at-home blog planner from Mama Miss. It’s great and I highly recommend it. I just printed it, punched holes in the sheets and put it in my binder.

ThisLife

5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life

This is something I just discovered but I’m excited to use it. It’s a private app which you can use on your computer as well as iPhone, iPad and Android devices. You can set it up to store your photos from different sources like Facebook, Instagram, from your mobile devices, off of your computer, and more.

I don’t know about you but I’m terrible about just leaving my photos on social media and my phone. This is a great way to end up possibly losing photos in the future. It’s best to have your photos in a few places to be sure you won’t lose them. While I want to get mine on to my external hard-drive those can fail so it’s good to have them somewhere else as well. ThisLife makes it really easy to import your photos and organize them for safe keeping.

It is owned by Shutterfly so it’s also really easy to print your photos and make photo gifts straight from this app. The free plan gives you storage for 2,500 photos but no videos. They offer paid plans that allow for more photos and for videos. Paid plans start at $19.99 a year.

Pinterest

I like to use Pinterest to organize my recipes. I plan on also making a recipe binder but for now I really like having my recipes on Pinterest.

Pinterest is where I look for new recipes so it makes sense. It’s also great that the recipes are also on my phone so it’s easy to look at them while I cook. Check out my Pinterest to see how I organize my recipes.

ShopShop

5 Tools to Help Organize Your Life
This is an app and it’s very simple but very useful. You simply add your list items and cross them off as you buy them. You can also have multiple lists.

Google Drive

I am terrible about backing up my computer. After losing a lot of things once because of this I’ve gone to putting a lot of important things, like articles I write, on Google Drive. My goal is to have things there and on my external drive.

I also love Google Drive because multiple people can be allowed to edit a document. I’ve used Google Drive for collaborative work and it makes it so much easier. You could also use it to make sure you and your family have access to the same documents.

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These are a few things I use to make my life a bit more organized. What are some of your favorite apps, programs, and devices that help you stay organized? Share in the comments below.

Linked up with Making Your Home Sing MondayMotivation Monday, and Tips and Tricks Linkup.

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Your Spouse Isn’t a Mind Reader

“What’s wrong”, says your spouse. “They should know what’s wrong”, you think to yourself. It’s so obvious! “You just don’t understand me”, you respond.

How many times have you had this argument? Why doesn’t your spouse understand you better? Well maybe because they aren’t a mind reader. Sure it’s obvious to you but it may not be to them and that’s okay. Maybe they really haven’t been paying attention and that can be frustrating. At the same time though, we normally end up with someone very different than ourselves and in that case their mind doesn’t work like yours.

 

Your Spouse Isn't a Mind Reader

Instead of expecting your spouse to read your mind, let them in and share your thoughts and feelings. The more you do this the better they will understand you but they will never 100% “get you.” You will still be different people and will still need help from time to time with understanding each other.

Someone trying to randomly guess your feelings and what you are thinking won’t really help you feel loved. Someone listening, asking questions, and wanting to know you better is a show of love and caring about you.

Your spouse may quit asking you questions and trying if every time they do they are met with anger. That’s when there is an actual problem.

Psychologist Leslie Becker-Phelps says this is something frequently seen in couples therapy.

“Linda pours her heart out to her husband, Brett, about feeling totally frustrated with a family situation. All she wants is for him to listen, and maybe to give her a hug. Brett, not wanting his wife to be so upset, explains exactly how she can fix the problem. Feeling judged rather than loved, she withdraws. She believes that he knows she needs to be comforted. He feels her giving him the cold shoulder, so he pulls back, too. Both are hurt and angry – feelings that eventually explode out of them in future conversations.”- read more

My husband is the type that when he hears a problem he wants to fix it. This is a great thing! However, often I just want to vent to him and like Linda in the story before maybe get a hug. It’s very easy to expect my husband to just know this is what I want. I try to remember to tell him before I start talking to him about the problem that I just want him to listen, I don’t need him to fix it. And guess what? He doesn’t just ignore that request, he does what I ask him to and what I need.

Simply remembering your spouse can’t read your mind can make a bit difference in how you communicate. Remember love isn’t being a mind reader, it’s about caring about each other.

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Are you guilty of this? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

Need some ideas to help you reconnect with your spouse? Check out these 15 at-home date night ideas.

Linked up with Wifey Wednesdays.

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Why I’m Not a Time-Warped Wife

*This post contains affiliate links. I was not paid for this post and all thoughts are my own.*

As I’m writing this post I’m wearing a vintage inspired purple polka dress, my water is sitting on a metal coaster from the 1950’s, and a vintage apron is draped on the back of my chair ready to be worn when I start on housework. I call myself a retro housewife for a reason.

Some people call women like myself time-warped wives but I don’t like that term. I don’t like it because I don’t want to live in the past and that shocks some people, maybe even you.

Why I'm Not a Time-Warped Wife

I adore the 1940’s and 1950’s. The fashion, the movies, the music, the homes… However, I do not want to live in either time. Sure I wish I could still go to a drug store on main street and have a milk shake. And I’d love to go to a drive-in movie on date night. I’d love to bring back somethings but not everything!

I know some people think that all of us who dress vintage and enjoy things from the past are naive about the eras we love. The 40’s gave us some amazing music and fashion but it also came with war, poverty and in my state of Oklahoma, they were still dealing with the lasting effects from the Dust Bowl. And both the 40’s and 50’s came with so many social injustices.

Plus I really like the internet, my cell phone, modern appliances, and many other modern things. And I really love the fact that I have the right to choose if I want to be a homemaker or have a career. I’ve never been a fan of being told what to do.

Recently Jessica over at Chronically Vintage interviewed two other great vintage bloggers Laurence and Sylvain of Lost in the 50’s. Jessica asked what the biggest perks of living a vintage filled life had been for Laurence and Sylvain and I truly loved their answer.

“I think that it’s the fact that you can choose the best parts of the era you like. Some people ask me if I would want to live in the 50’s. No, it’s great to live now and having the best of a modern life and the best of the 50’s.

I’m well aware that life back then was not always a bed of roses. There were bad conditions still for many women, racism, poverty, and many other serious social concerns. Today we can live now a 50’s life, but with the advantages of a modern world. I think it’s important to be aware of history in order to have a better life in the present.”- Click here to read the full interview

And that’s just what I do, I pick my favorite parts of the eras and add them into my life. It’s easy to glamorize the 40’s and 50’s but  it’s important to remember the ways we have it better now.

Do you agree? Or do you feel like it still glamorizes the past too much to live a vintage lifestyle? Share your thoughts in the comments, I’d love to hear what you think!

Photo Credit- SportSuburban via Flickr

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