#BeMine

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Happy Valentines Day! Last week I shared about some ways we celebrate this holiday. Today I’m letting you see our baking adventure we had in preparation for today. I hope you enjoy some of these moments as much as I. Making memories with the little people in our lives is such a treat. Even more so than the ‘treats’ themselves! I realize that now… but by the look of these kiddos faces, I think they still find that the actual treats themselves are pretty awesome! The appreciation for memories will settle in their hearts later on…

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We spent an afternoon baking and decorating heart shaped sugar cookies. Okay stop right there. I need to rephrase that; Actually, my good friend Fred Meyer spent the day baking and Betty Crocker prepared our frosting for us this time. Yes, it was one of those weeks. Not everything can be homemade overtime in my life. So we go with the help of others as often as needed. And I have learned to be okay with that. Remember my post last week?! Keep it sweet and simple. So for us, this was our sweet and simple. And you know what, the kids loved every moment of it (even the purchases at the store were a thrill because they anticipated the creations and consumption all the way home)!

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I had to keep at least one on a covered pedestal for myself or else the kids would want to eat them all, but look what happened…

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Look at Seth Luke’s (my two year old) eyes. Don’t they innocently scream “I want that!” I was upstairs and then came down to this…I happen to have my camera on me to capture his sneaky mission… ha!

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He took the lid off, dipped his finger in the frosting and was on repeat for about 5x before I said, “Seth Luke, what are you doing.” And this was the face I got. Lol. Now many of you are probably like, “Well why in the world did you leave that on a table he can reach?!” Well let me answer that, I had left it there for some IG pics I was doing a few minutes prior to me having to run upstairs for something. Within seconds, he was a smart cookie to figure out how to take a little bit at a time so mom wouldn’t notice. He hasn’t learned moms have eyes behind our heads yet, nor cameras that allow us to share it with the world. Happy Valentine’s Day!

The School Room and so much more…

Wait, you homeschool with four children seven and under?!  Yes, yes I do. Stop, don’t leave! I’m not going to start making every post about what curriculum is best, or what books to read, or what denim skirt looks best to wear with your bun and scrunchy (eek, do they still make those things)? I promise. Hmm, come to think of it my daughter is on a side bun kick lately. Yikes, that’s for consideration another time. Lol, wink.

I totally get that homeschooling is not for everyone. And that is a very good thing. We are all made beautifully unique. Wherever you are at…to the ends of the earth.  With that said, I simply hope this post will encourage all of you mamas out there to love your little ones well by creating a space for them to imagine, dream, and learn. They are a gift to us. Teach them well through giving them the gift of learning. In whatever capacity that may be. We all spend a lifetime of learning. Yes, all of us. Let’s embrace learning together again. I know I have much to learn!

So for us this is a year of homeschooling. And we love it. That’s my motto- One year at a time. I can handle that. One single year, month, day, and if I’m honest with myself, moment at a time.  Breathe in, breathe out. By God’s grace we are taking it a year at a time. And truth be told…it is a joy and honor for me right now.

Here is a look at where we spend a good portion of our day…It is a room that works hard for our family as it puts on several hats including: office, playroom, daddy wrestling room, crafting, story times, guest room, and school room.

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A reading corner in a TeePee? Why not! Wouldn’t you want story time in a TeePee?

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Each kiddo has their own desk space. This is super helpful for storing each of their own supplies and books. We painted the kids’ desk tops with some chalkboard paint.  They have fun writing their name or doodling on it. That’s doodling, not drooling. Although that can happen sometimes too. I do have a 2 year old.

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This is our ART area. I like to keep a variety of markers, pens, pencils, crayons, tape etc. accessible to the kids here. They know they can be creative anytime as long as the items are put back where it was taken from.  This keeps us from ‘loosing’ items and helps maintain some sort of order in the school/play room.

Thanks for coming by to see our School Room today. Or at least parts of it. And for those of you wondering if everything is always in it’s perfect place like these photos show…think again. We are real people. And my kids are kids. Everyday (sometimes multiple times a day) we have an entire house cleanup time!

Take heart mamas. You’re doing a great job.Give your littles a hug and kiss.That will go a long way and could very well be all the lesson they need to know today… that they are loved, always.

“Rooms in the Inn” Home Tour- Master Bedroom/Bath

Welcome into a glimpse of our home!  This week I will be giving you a tour of our bedrooms all decorated for Christmas in a series called-“Rooms in the Inn”. I’ll give you a look at some of our farmhouse features in our bedrooms in hopes to inspire you to keep creating beauty and rest within your own homes, as always.

Let’s start off our “Rooms in the Inn” Home Tour with a look at our master bedroom…

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Of course if you put a massive FARMHOUSE sign anywhere it will shout out, “Hi I’m a farmhouse and I like being a farmhouse here.”  So you can never go wrong with adding that word to your home on a sign or pillow cover if you share a love for the same combination of letters as I.  Also, adding any rustic barn wood accents is another great way to bring a cozy homestead feel.  As you can see we have the barn wood feature with our headboard.  Some others options for you are a rustic wood framed mirror, artwork, or picture frames.

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Our matching nightstands are painted in SW Alabaster.  I kept the original hardware on them to add fresh vintage symmetry to our room.

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A frosted green wreath with silver balls and a glittery reindeer bring a cheerful presence to our room with its simple, yet completely Christmas farmhouse appeal.

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Classic white linen curtains casually hang on a black rod. The rod rest on rustic hooks mounted on our matching barn wood.  I like them much better than your standard wall mount hooks, how about you?

And now for our Master Bath…

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We went with a simple timeless look by having white subway tile throughout, tobacco stained cabinets, and chrome finishes.

*Our knobs are from Restoration Hardware

*’Everyday I love you’ sign is from Hobby Lobby

*Fixtures above sinks are Pottery Barn

*Fixture above tub is Joss and Main 

*Wall color is SW Agreeable Gray

That wraps up my “Rooms in the Inn”Home Tour-Master Bedroom/Bath.  I’ll have the kids’ room next so be sure to check back in soon!

Bless your home

Christmas Craft

Every year we have created a homemade Christmas ornament for our friends and family.  I thought I would share what we did this year in hopes you will enjoy it too.  It is simple, non messy(can I get a woot woot), country farmhouse inspired, and easy on the pocket book.  Here is what you’ll need:

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Twine- 1$ spot at Target / Glass ornaments, tiny jingle bells, gold wire S hooks- Craft Warehouse / Fresh clippings from your Christmas tree… or your neighbors if you have an artificial 🙂 .

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Gather your supplies and I’m sure you can figure out the rest! Have fun and create an adorable ornament to be enjoyed for years to come.  They are also very cute laying in a dish, bowl, or tray for a center piece or as a guest party-favor.

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Here it is all completed with that cute little piece of our tree inside.  I like that we will have a part of the tree to carry into next year too!  As a final touch we always add a tag with the year on it so we remember each creation in the years to come.

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This year’s ornament is definitely on of my very favorites.  Merry Christmas and happy crafting friends!

Gingerbread and Star Eyes

My mom, fondly called Nani, visited us recently and brought an edible Christmas surprise ‘craft’ to do with the kids.   img_8346

This is one of our traditions to do together as a family each year.  Nani jumped in on the fun with us this year too. And let me just say, those costco kits are incredible if you don’t have an architectural itch for the day.  The gingerbread is pre-made and the walls are already frosted in place. No, rather glued into place. Lots of hands on it, and that house was solid!  There was enough candy for the four kids to each have a small dish full and they could all design and taste test to their hearts content (wellll, to mommy’s hearts content rather)

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It’s always fun to make memories together during this time of year. Especially stary-eyed ones you can eat!

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Gather & Give Thanks

Thanksgiving week is here!

This is one of our favorite Holidays here at The White Barn Farm.  How about for you?!  For us it marks the end of corn stalks, bright colored leaves, & warm apple cider and it is the begining of snowflakes, twinkling lights, & peppermint hot cocoa.

There is something so sweet about the last bit of the fall season that makes my heart happy.  The spiced pumpkins smells while we retell the first Thanksgiving story allows us to slow down to reflect on how we have been richly blessed and provided for. No matter what the ups and downs of the year are this is a time to take notice of how we can choose to be thankful. As each year passes I am learning how choosing thanks brings about greater joy in the everyday.  I want to truly know joy.  How about you?

It is especially significant for our family to often set aside moments to remember all that we can be thankful for.  So here’s a look into the hearts of our Lil’ Mac kids with a list of some of what their ‘Gathering and Giving Thanks’ list looked like this year; It’s simple and yet important to practice giving thanks for the everyday provisions: I can learn from them indeed.

Jesus, daddy, mommy, food, our beds, gma, gpa, popii, nani, all our cousins, Aunties and Uncles, our church, friends, candy, house, car, bikes, clothes, the park to play, fuzzy bear, blankie, bunny, doggy, our neighbors, cookies, the library, books, movies, cat, ice-cream, dogs, horses to ride and help train, baths.

Enjoy gathering and giving thanks today and always. Happy Thanksgiving to you!

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Goodbye Pumpkins….

We are wrapping up our fall and about to enter into our Christmas winter wonderland. The Christmas music may have even slipped its way into our home from time to time already. What can I say, it’s the most wonderful time of the year. So why not streeetchhhh out the wonder of it all. My mom, Christmas Queen, would be proud for sure.

With four children, all seven years and younger, there are still simple delights that make their hearts full. One way we tapped into such a delight this week was sending out our left-over pumpkins with some new pizzazz. All we needed was a pumpkin, paint, brushes, water dish, and imaginative children. Then, boda-bing-boda boom, let the creativity begin.

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If you have any pumpkins still sitting out on your porch, grab some paint or paper mache and have some fun with your littles!  The hour or more of entertainment is a nice way for you to get another load of laundry folded while they’re occupied (or at least laundry started! Let’s be honest, folding usually happens when they’re asleep around here).

Sometimes embracing ‘the mess’ of an artsy afternoon is a fantastic way to make memories and have some fun.  Not to mention the pumpkins sure look much cuter as I tossed them out today…..Yes, i did it discreetly.  So far no one has asked where their masterpiece is.   I’m sure the quick change into a Christmas wonderland that is about to happen around here will provide enough distraction. At least i sure hope so, lol!  What are some of your family’s ways to enjoy these last days of pumpkin-spice-and-everything nice?!

For the C-Macs it’s officially,

Goodbye pumpkins….hello Christmas!

And a very warm welcome to Thanksgiving in between.

 

Let’s Dance

Placeholder ImageAren’t there just some days you need to crank up the music and say, “Let’s Dance!”  There are definitely those moments around our house.  Especially when cleaning is involved. ha! Music makes all tasks seem better when getting your groove on, right?!  Tell me I’m not the only one who belts out in song and twirls around the house with two mopping towels under my feet.  You should try it. It may surprise you how fun cleaning can actually be!  And here’s the main kicker…shhhh (the kids think its fun too!).  And if you can get the kids involved, you’ve just accomplished something great.  Memories are made and keeping a home tidy, organized, and clean is made fun.  Win, win and win.

Twirl on over with me to this thought….wouldn’t dance lessons be so fun to take with your spouse?  This is on my someday bucket list with my man.  Like real dancing.  I’ve always wanted to learn a few ‘legit steps’ on the dance floor beside my go-to sway, grocery cart, lawn mower, moon walk, and raise the roof. Yes, I grew up in the 90’s.  Letting go and dancing is a fun way to take a break from the mundane and live with a little more pep in your step while at home.

Come on, turn the music up and, “Let’s Dance.”  You, your home, and your lil’ people will be happy you do.  Oh, and don’t forget your hubs would like a little dance too I’m sure. wink.

Okay so go on out, grab a few friends, and find your ‘professional local couples dance studio’ (ummm yes, we may have to check the Senior Center or Community Grange Hall. Lol.)… maybe your husband will ‘Christmas Gift’ you with him showing up to a few lessons with you. Then at next years Christmas party or family wedding there will be no excuses for standing in the corner for either of you.  It would be a hoot.

Here are some of my most often played Stations and Artists on our Pandora and Spotify:  Let me know some of yours too!

*Dance Cardio or Kids Bop– Good for ‘getting down and getting clean’

*Elevation worship or Vertical Church Band– Encouraging belt it praise songs

*Frank Sinatra– Classic, good for the soul for those ‘have a little fun’ moments

*Adele– Can’t go wrong with her. ever.

*Roo Panes and Ben Rector– Great chill, have friends over tunes

*Johnnyswim–  All the time, anytime.  Take me to a concert please! Silos ’17?!

*Country Love Songs– Sappy date night music, can someone say… “Get my boots and let’s stroll a country road together hand in hand”