June – life updates

One thing I’d like to do more consistently on the blog is to share personal updates.  This past year the blog has had many ups and downs and while I love talking about destinations and family travel, sometimes I want to get back to the old days of an online journal.  In many ways, Instagram stories have become my outlet for sharing the everyday thoughts and family life.  But, not everyone is on Instagram, and those stories are only live …

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The disease of wanting to be liked

Today after dropping off boy #2 at preschool, I was attempting to “sell” preschool to my daughter, using it as a leverage tool for her to (for the love) go in the potty. Her response, “Yeah I go to preschool next year and people will like me!” I have to stop buckling her seat and look at her.  Did she just say that? She’s not even 3 but she’s going to go to preschool with the aim that people will like her? Oh that …

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Summer Bucket List

The unofficial beginning of summer is only 2 weeks away!  Our family counts Memorial Day weekend as the kick-off to our Summer Bucket List even if the calendar tells me that summer isn’t until June 20. First, I asked the boys what they thought they would like to do this summer.  They were very excited to offer up “go to the playground” and “the pool!” (if this doesn’t show the simplicity of young children, #idontknowwhatdoes).   Then I wrote out a few of …

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Fighting entitlement in children (and all of us)

A book review I’ve been following Kristen Welch for a long time.  Her oftentimes raw prose about parenting, marriage and raising kids is always something I’m eager to read.  So when I was accepted to be on her Launch Team for Raising Grateful Kids in an Entitled World, I did a little happy dance for the opportunity to read the book (for free) before every once.  Of course these opinions are my own. I will admit it’s empowering for me …

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How to make a budget

AKA: How to afford to do the things you want to do You can read lots and lots of financial advice.  There are books and blogs and e-courses,oh my!  However, we’ve found that truly the ONE thing you must have if you want to succeed financially is the dreaded B word- a BUDGET! The months when we get off track with our budget are the months that we lose sight of the big picture.  Creating a budget gives you the …

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4 things I always buy at Aldi

Mr. Yoder Toter and I have always been frugal food shoppers, but having three children has added a dimension of buying things that we never did before.  Whereas I used to eat the only bowl of cereal each morning, there are now 4 bowls of cereal.  Or instead of using 4 pieces of bread for a sandwich, we’re up to 8 or 9.  All of this change has prompted some modifications to how I shop. Aldi has swept in and become …

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Why we need to stop saying, “You need a bigger house.”

Guys & Gals, There is something that a few people have told me lately and it really gets my goat.  Pretty much since baby #3 was just a bun in the oven I’ve often heard, “You need a bigger house.” I don’t get this statement (and I have to curb the need to say, “You need a smaller mouth” LOL). Here’s the reality: I don’t need a bigger house.  Our family of 5 lives in a humble 1300 square feet.  When Brian …

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How good mentorship can change your finances and your life

Why do young men begin a life of thievery or violence in order to support their habits? Why do some women serial date men that will never commit to marriage? Why do young students go out and borrow $100,000 for a Bachelors degree? This, and other issues, I believe can be radically changed by changing the level of mentorship in our society. Sometimes, this mentorship will be called parenting, but many times it won’t come directly from the parents.  I remember …

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