Valentine's Day Gift Ideas!

Ok girls, Valentine's Day is exactly 16 days away! So I thought I would share some favorites from the new Stella & Dot Spring collection- I am nuts about all of it! Great ideas to give for Valentine's gifts! Make sure to visit my friend Christina's page to check out all of the new product- she can help you with anything you need- she has most of it and I am always wanting to snag it off of her!

1. Isn't the Fleurette Statement Necklace lovely? I love all of the peach colors coming out for spring. ($198)
2. White is always my favorite (along with Black and Gray) I love these Mallorca Chandeliers ($49) and the Sutton necklace is so fabulous ($178)- it can be worn 5 different ways! (I have a version of this and LOVE it!)
3. Besides White, Black and Gray...Yellow is my favorite actual color! Love the Norah Pendant ($98) and earrings ($49)
4. The Jacinthe Bracelet ($59) is so cool and I LOVE my gold Renegade ($59)- so I am pumped for the Rose Gold! I always get a lot of complements on that bracelet. 
5. Again, the peach! The Somervell Necklace ($59) and the Bracelet (39) would be so much fun to stack! 


"Mommy Guilt"

I hear the word “guilt” so many times every day that it literally makes my tummy turn. Articles, blog posts, books, TV shows, Pinterest articles, Twitter feeds...on and on, all talking about “mommy guilt” or trying to promote "mommy guilt" in other moms. I read an article today called “The Best Parenting Tips Ever from Child Psychologists” and #8 was “Get used to the guilt”. Now, I do agree with most of their points in that article..but not this one.. thanks to our savior Jesus Christ, WE DO NOT HAVE TO LIVE WITH GUILT- (say that 10 times out loud)!!! Thanks to Jesus Christ and the sacrifice He made for us, we are free from Guilt- He took our guilt and shame upon himself and WE ARE FREE. I thought I would share 10 things I think through when I feel guilt sneaking up or when I hear of “mommy guilt”.

  1. YOU, along with every other human being in history, except Jesus Christ, are a sinner. (Romans 3:23) You will make mistakes, you will mess up, you will cry, you will fall, you will fail, you will yell, you will crumble, you will spill things, burn things, ruin things, miss things, drop the ball on things...and then, you will seek the only one who knows every hair on your head and every hair on your babies head and ask Him for strength to do it better tomorrow than you did today. You might have to ask forgiveness from God and your kids/spouse- but you will wake up tomorrow and get to start FRESH! If our Creator can remove sin as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12)...surely we can forgive ourselves and move on.
  2. Forget yesterday, forget tomorrow- live NOW. Do not let the enemy steal your joy TODAY because of something you did YESTERDAY (but yes, do repent- he will lift your burden). Do not let him steal your joy TODAY because you are worried about TOMORROW. (Matt 6:24)
  3. “Cast ALL your cares upon Him because He cares for YOU” (1 Peter 5:7) There is supernatural peace straight from the Holy Spirit when you confess your sins to God and seek His forgiveness and when you give him ALL of your cares or anxieties. There is also a burden lifted when we humble ourselves and ask our children or husbands to forgive us. I have had to learn this the hard way so many times, it is MUCH harder to carry the burden of sin than to simply seek forgiveness and release it to the Lord. The Bible says, "His yoke is easy and burden is light"! (Matt 11:29-13) Don’t hang on to the burden of guilt- hand it to God! Be honest with your kids and show them that “ALL have sinned and fall short of the Glory of God” (Ro 3:23) EVEN mommy- your children will have to learn about taking responsibility for their actions, repentance, forgiveness, kindness and grace- model it for them! 
  4. Guilt/Fear IS NOT FROM GOD. (2 Tim 1:7) When you entertain guilt or fear you are receiving that from the enemy. Use the initial feeling of guilt to draw you to your knees immediately and move forward as a forgiven daughter of the King. Use the guilt to change your ways and learn. Use the guilt as a reminder to simplify. Use the guilt as a reminder to apologize. Use it...then lose it! 
  5. Celebrate ALL of the good things you did today: all of the ways you served your family, all of the smiles, hugs, kisses, encouraging words, the moments when you instilled a foundation of faith in your children, the lessons of repentance and forgiveness you taught them, the food you provided them with to nourish their bodies, the miles you traveled taking them places, the moment you set the phone down to play, the book you read to them...some days, there might be a lot of bad moments...but I would bet there is good stuff too! Lets stop saying “this is a bad or horrible DAY” when something goes wrong and say “this is a bad moment” and ask God to turn it around!
  6. The best way to avoid a horrible guilt-filled day to begin with is by spending time with God. It is supernatural how quiet time with the Lord changes my day. When I play worship music in the background all day...it changes the mood. Ask Him for His fruit- Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control. (Gal 5:22-23) They are ours by the blood of Christ for the taking- ask for them and practice them...every.single.day! Know the difference between guilt and a nudging from the Lord via your conscience. There is a big difference and those can be confused. 
  7. You can say “No”- do not allow guilt to creep in your life because you are “people pleasing” and you are a “yes person”. There are so many opportunities..fun, exciting, fabulous opportunities..that come along every day. Evaluate your priorities and answer accordingly. If you cannot engage in the opportunity without feeling guilt- don’t do it! If God wants you to do it- it will not come with guilt! Do not receive the guilt from another human being as a form of manipulation...ask God to open your eyes to truth and see manipulation for what it is. 
  8.  If God made us all the exact same life would be boring! You will not fit in everyone's "mommy box". Your very own mother might disagree with your mothering- do not receive the guilt. God gave you a smart mind and he assigned YOU as the mother of your children. He does not make mistakes. In this world of motherhood: some sleep train/others don't, some spank/others don't, some let their children run free in stores or restaurants/others don't, some immunize/others don't, some are car seat crazies/others are not, some prefer home birth/others don't, some do all organic/others don't, some watch TV/others don't, some do public school/others don't, some stay at home/others don't ..you get the idea! We inflict TOO much guilt on other moms- Do YOUR thing girl! Do not let someone make you feel guilty for the choices you and your husband make for your family. They are just trying to justify their own decisions and insecurities. This has to stop! I bet you have found yourself on both sides of this coin...I have and find myself judging other moms far too often. Be secure enough in yourself and the job God himself has given YOU to accept and love other moms and celebrate our differences! That is my goal!
  9. Enlist co-workers (You might remember my philosophy HERE: Who’s the Boss) We cannot do this “mom thing” alone- there is no guilt like the guilt of the woman who feels personally responsible for all things. It is impossible to do it all. It is impossible to do all of the Pinterest crafts, Pinterest meals, read to each child, nurture each child, educate the child, teach the child scripture, focus on the “12 things to say to your child before they are 4” or the “10 things you should never say to a little girl”, the 350 sight words the kids need to know, the laundry, laundry, laundry, keep the husband happy, pay the bills, be the room mom, remember the classroom snacks, sign up for summer camps, pick up dry cleaning, clean the house, host the Bible Study, maintain long distant relationships, working, organizing, volunteer at church, volunteer in the community, go to the grocery store, remember birthdays, write thank you notes....I could go on forever! It is impossible to do it ALL every day- so we allow guilt to creep. Come to peace with the idea that you are no longer as efficient as you used to be (especially with a toddler hanging on your leg) and just do what you can every day and when (not IF) needed- ask for help. Serve God, serve others and enlist “co-workers”- babysitters, family, friends, etc.. It is humbling to admit that you cannot do it ALL, but humbly allow others to serve you and to impact your children and DO NOT feel guilty about it. Be free from the guilt of “Supermom”.
  10. YOU ARE FREE. YOU ARE FREE. YOU ARE FREE. Take hold of your freedom in Christ! DO NOT live in bondage to ANYTHING...not to yourself, not to another person, not to guilt, not to fear, not to pain, not to thoughts, not to yesterday, not to tomorrow, not to the evil of this world, not to your sin....we are FREE from ALL of it through Christ Jesus. Hebrews 4:15-16 says “For we do not have a high priest incapable of sympathizing with our weaknesses, but one who has been tempted in every way just as we are, yet without sin. Therefore let us confidently approach the throne of grace to receive mercy and find grace whenever we need help.” You will mess up, approach HIM with confidence and receive his mercy and grace which has already been paid for on the cross- RECEIVE it! 


Lily Cole

Ok friends- my friend Maggie has added so many new fun products on her Etsy site- thought I would share some of them with you! She has so many fun Valentine printables and custom cards- make sure to check them out!

1. Love the Robot Print and the Butterfly print! (I, of course, am going to BEG her to add 2 Corinthians 5:17 to the Butterfly print for us- I bet she would do that for you too!)
2. These Birthday tags are making my life SO much easier- I have the girls sign them and draw a little picture or whatever and they tie right on the bag or ribbon! She uses darling bakers twine with them- no more buying expensive cards that people throw away- just a darling tag! You can have her print them or purchase the file to print yourself! BOY//GIRL. ALSO- I love the You are My Sunshine Birthday materials!  I am thinking a sunshine birthday for Milly's #3 would be a fabulous idea- my head spins with the fun possibilities! This would make it so easy- Invites, banner, cupcake toppers and water bottle labels! SO fun!
3. Finally- the Valentine's! Go check them out- she will email you the file within 24 hours, print them and you are done! Only $5!!


10 Years...New Bedding!

February 7 marks our 10th Wedding Anniversary- if you would have asked me 10 years ago what we would be doing on our 10th Anniversary, I would have told you we will be going on an awesome trip- back to DC where we met, back to Cabo where we honeymooned, maybe Tahiti (in my dreams)...so #10 is here and guess what we did..GOT NEW BEDDING! I am serious, that is as exciting as it gets around here! I did not factor in the logistics of three kids and a budget when I dreamed about #10- so, we will aim high for #20! (We are also going to go down to the Plaza in KC and have 24 child-free hours in a hotel, which I am so grateful for!) Anyway, I am so super super super excited about new bedding- our old bedding survived 10 years, 2 giant dogs, 3 kids and 7 moves- RIP old bedding! Here is our new bedding- it is a big deal for me to sport so much color, but I like how fresh it is! AND...I love our "Mr. and Mrs. McMaster" pillow- all on sale at Pottery Barn in case you are like us and need to freshen up! It is a work in progress, I am on the hunt for Euro Shams but here is a little snapshot of the bed...



You may remember my Valentine's Day post last year HERE- I am not usually the type to be on my game for Valentine's- just as a reminder these are the categories I think most moms fall into (below)- 

The way I see it, you will probably fit in one of these categories: 
1) The "Catch Phrase"- You know the fabulous people who come up with things like "I Dig You" with a shovel attached- (see below) 
2) The "Crafty"- The people who spend 2 hours (exaggerating) on each card to make it perfect- they probably make 4 runs to Hobby Lobby and love every minute. They probably have kids who enjoy crafting it up with them! 
3) The "Kid did it"- These are those sweet moms who have no control issues- they let their kids create- my kids would love to have you as their mom some days!
4) The "I spent a LOT of money on this one Valentine"- I don't need to elaborate! 
e) The "I purchased this to look like it was homemade"- This would be me if I cared enough- how I love Esty for this reason! 
5) The "Healthy"- I LOVE YOU...I am always delighted when the Organic Bunny Snacks or apples come home- I can't say I ever do this, but I am excited when you do! 
6) The "Baker"- always making something delightful and homemade!
8) The "Non Candy"- I love you also! Little toys with custom little tags for each child- fabulous!
9) The..."AHH I have to run in and snag some Valentines for the kids"- we shlep 3 children through Target or Wallgreens and pick the Valentines that require the least assembly, get them home and hand each kid a sharpie and tell them to write their names on them. After 45 minutes of complaining and drawing everything on the card EXCEPT their name...mom decides to "help" and we knock the cards out, throw them in a Target bag and check that off the list of to-do's! (usually me!)

USUALLY I am a #9.... HOWEVER, this year I am a #1 and #8- WOOHOO! I am so proud of myself that I thought you all should get a sneak peek at our Valentine's- That's right- Glow Sticks ("catch phrase" straight off of Pinterest). I am feeling so crafty I might just go sew something (or not)!!!!


Orange Lips!

I have been reading everywhere (magazines, blogs, etc..) that Orange is the hot color for lips this spring (and now, if you ask me!) The good news is that other than pink...orange is my go-to. I have read from a lot of make-up artists that EVERY color is better when mixed with another color- so never just wear one lipstick, always mix. Here are my favorites: 

1. MY #1 go-to is Lancome "Rouge in Love #340" This is pretty bright and REALLY pretty when mixed with any other color- the problem is that Lancome doesn't have this exact shade anymore- which is devastating! They do have Coral in Love, Ever so Sweet & Madame Tulipe- either way, I really love this lipstick and there are so many pretty orange options!  
2. Trish McEvoy "Essential Balm, Gorgeous Coral" This is sheer and the downside is that you have to sharpen it. It is so pretty and "minty"!
3. Trish McEvoy "Flawless Lip Color, Coral Shimmer" This is a gloss, but it lasts like a lipstick
4. Revlon "Colorburst Matte Balm #210 Unapologetic" This is serious orange and serious Matte- I love it mixed with another lighter nude shade or bold and bright! It does not need to be sharpened, which is great! 


Healthy Eating Shortcut!

I realize this is not an EARTH SHATTERING post- but I have been doing this for the past few months and it has made my life so much easier... not to mention healthier!
On Saturday or Sunday I go to the store and stock up on fruits and veggies (Costco is usually my spot for this), I spend 20 minutes or so washing and chopping all of them- then I store them in plastic containers so I have them easily accessible throughout the week. (IF I find a good deal, I also like to make a brisket in the slow cooker and have the meat for several meals that week). I find myself going to the fruit and veggies instead of snacks for me and for the girls, I use the veggies instead of chips or crackers, if the girls want a snack or yogurt I have it all right there, I can throw the veggies in whatever I am cooking for dinner, etc... For ME, this has really revolutionized our eating! (yes, we eat other fruits and veggies also, yes I try to use organic whenever possible, yes I realize the longer they are in there the less nutrients you are eating...but I say...at least we are increasing F&V intake!!!)


Fancy Rose Party!

We celebrated Izzy's 5th Birthday this week- she planned the whole party (we just had family over to celebrate- no "friend party" this year) it was fun- here are some pictures!

{I like to have one table for all of the kids- I just put two card tables together with table cloths. They always have fun! Here is the kids table}

(Izzy wanted chocolate roses at the place settings, she also wanted rose headbands for the girls (thank goodness Party City had them! I use the mason jar cups and lids for everything- such a good investment}

{The Birthday Girl at her table!}

{The Cousins}

{Ready to open gifts! She wanted to wear her flower girl dress!}

{I made her a "Rose Cake" It turned out really yummy. She chose the flavors and everything!}

{Here is the inside- vanilla cake, buttercream frosting (homemade of course :) and chocolate cake. I really do love making the cakes- it is quite a process but I do love it!}

{I made some cupcakes too- just with the extra batter and roses everywhere!}

{The Adult Table}

{AND…She got to go into my closet and pick out my outfit- she chose this "fancy gown" that I have not put on my body in 10+ years- not sure why it is still in there?! and silver heels- it was a humbling mom moment- I could wear a fun outfit that I would like…or make her happy by wearing the gown- so I sucked it up!}

There you go- it was a fun party! She felt special and celebrated and now….on to our 10th anniversary (2/7) Valentine's Day and Ellie's Birthday (2/16)! 



Well, in case you don't remember my 2013 goals, HERE is the article. I did not perfectly meet my goals- but I am happy with the effort! I am going to have the same goals this year- with the additions of being frugal and exercise! I am praying for a delightful 2014 for all of you, I am praying for knowledge, wisdom and insight for our leaders in this Country (and maybe some perspective and integrity), I am praying for the safety of Christians who are being persecuted around the world, I am praying for God's word to reach the corners of this earth, I am praying for my children to walk with the Holy Spirit and to have wisdom beyond their years of who God is, I am praying that I can be the kind of woman who is the fragrance of God to others. Many Blessings to you in this new year- let's take one day at a time and try to LIVE it! Now…I thought it would be fun to take a look back at 2013 on the blog…

Here are the most popular DelightfulMomStuff posts (based on views) for 2013:
JANUARY: Dining Out with KidsIzzy's Princess party, Valentines Party 
FEBRUARY:  Books That Encourage Kids to Focus on God, My favorite Apps for kids, Our Valentines, Legacy
MARCH: Traveling with Young Kids and Babies
APRIL: 12 Great Mom Links10 Truths to Teach My Children, A Big Reunion & The Reunion Recap
MAY: 25 Things I would tell Pre Mom Me,  My Favorite Products, Bible Study Night, Job Board
JUNE: Babysitting GuidelinesFlower Girl Recap
JULY: 18 Months Holy CowSummer Projects
AUGUST: Back to SchoolOverwhelmed and Blessed
SEPTEMBER: 12 Mom Articles
OCTOBER: A Happy Woman
NOVEMBER: It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year..To Celebrate Jesus
DECEMBER: Gift Guide: My Wish List, Gift Guide: Little Girls, Gift Guide: Boy Toys

SIDE NOTE: If you are looking for something fun to start this new year- PrayerWithPurpose journals are perfect to start praying your heart's desires for your kids (or unborn babies). Each day has virtues, scripture and definitions as well as room to journal for your family. A great thing for grandparents, parents or anyone!
HERE is the LINK:

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