It Was The Wrong Day

As you can imagine with 2 boys…one 12 and the other 14 there are quite a few disputes around our house. I usually do a pretty awesome job of ignoring the rivalry but the other day…was not like any other day.

It seemed like an ordinary day…work, grocery store…and then on home to continue my evening duties. As I pulled into the garage…they couldn’t get out the door fast enough. the words couldn’t come out of their mouths fast enough.

 photo stock-photo-3040226-vintage-aged-background-paper_zpsbbe76753.jpg

He done this. But he started it. He called me a name. No, I didn’t. He shoved me…both innocent of any wrongdoing.

I calmly listened to each version of what had just taken place. And then I calmly rounded up every device I could find in their rooms. TV’s, iPads and cell-phones.

With panicked eyes they asked when they would get their belongings back and I didn’t have an answer. I was keeping them until…the constant fighting ended, they could function doing something other than having some sort of device crammed in their face, the back-talking stopped, the attitudes were gone…

Now, I absolutely hate, hate, hate with all my soul to have to discipline the boys. But I have to. God has chosen me to be their mentor. To guide them through life. And to discipline them if needed.

Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him. Proverbs 13:24

After I got over the guilt…and they got over the misery of not having anything to do…life has been pretty pleasant. The youngest completed a near 300 page book. And the oldest broke out a board game that hasn’t seen the light of day since who knows when.

And they’re still alive! It hasn’t killed them like they thought it may.

Now, would the book reading and board game playing have happened had they had their TV’s, iPads or cell-phones…I will go out on a limb and say probably not. So this hasn’t been such a bad thing after all. Maybe they will get their stuff back soon but until then I’m going to enjoy the peace and enjoy seeing them do something besides having their noses stuck in some sort of device.

At the time  of this post they have received their TV’s back…but only to watch at bedtime <– that has been the biggest torture out of it all.

 

Have you ever had to take things away from your kids for punishment? What type of discipline works best for you?

 

 

Our Debt-Free Journey {One}

#debt. It’s like a plague. It’s so easy to get. It spreads like wild-fire. And at times it seems impossible to get rid of.

Our Debt-Free Journey. {One}
A few years ago I didn’t have any debt. Nada. I was living in rental property. The car I drove was paid for. And we were getting by.

Then our home became a 2-income family. I was getting tired of eating out off the dollar menu. I wanted my dream car with third-row seating. I wanted steak dinners with loaded baked potatoes. We had 2-incomes so we were doing good.

Then we bought a home. Along with it came maintenance. And of course a ton of stuff that we wanted to do because it was finally ours. You can check out one of those projects here.

Then I gave up my $18 a month cell-phone and entered the world of technology with a smartphone.

Then my son turned 14 and he got a smartphone.

And then the Mr. got tired of putting his panties on when he drove my old car to work and so he got a new used truck.

And on and on and on it goes…and where it stops no one knows. it stops here. Right now.

As of August 11th…our total debt is…

107198
And that $107,198.00 is controlling our lives. Yes. It controls my life. Right now I have the option to work 4 days a week but guess what? I can’t because I need the check from a 5 day work week to pay our bills. #yesitsucks

God didn’t intend for us to live in debt and let money control our lives. We’re told in Proverbs 22:7 that a borrower is servant or slave to the lender. #truth

So now the million dollar question is…how do we get out of debt sooner than anticipated?

Be sure to join me as we begin our debt-free journey. You will see all my tips and tricks. You will get to read about all my mess-ups and mistakes. And I will get to share with you the progress we have made each month. Follow along so you can cheer us on and hold me accountable. #simplifylife

Are you on a debt-free journey? I’d love to hear your story. Any tips you’d like to share with me. Any successes you’d like to share to help motivate me.

 

 

#confessions (What You May Not Know About Me)

Today’s post is a bunch of randomness that never gets talked about. From my younger years to present life.

  1. When I was 15 I attended modeling school for a short time. I learned a lot and started working on a portfolio but it just wasn’t for me.
  2. I have a 3rd child in heaven. About 2 months into my pregnancy I had a miscarriage.
  3. I have cheated on 1 boyfriend in the past.
  4. Sometimes when I need a boost of energy I take Hydroxycut.
  5. I’ve been skinny-dipping once in my life.
  6. I am afraid to pray out loud.
  7. In high-school I wanted to be a … physician assistant or flight attendant.
  8. I have shaved my eyebrows instead of plucking. #laziness
  9. I have never done illegal drugs.
  10. I have been to jail 3 times.
  11. I still eat banana baby food as a snack.
  12. I have kissed a girl once. It was only a pop-kiss and it was totally a joke. And it was a very long time ago.
  13. I have taken used cigarettes out of ashtrays and try to smoke them. (of course these were from people that I knew).
  14. I ate mud once because I thought it may possibly taste like chocolate. #wrong
  15. I am scared of the dark. and of what’s in the dark.

 photo cool-wodden-wall-graffiti-1080p-hd-wallpaper_zps3632eeb3.jpg

In James 5:16 it says, ‘Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed…

Now I would consider some of the things that I confessed to be minor and silly. I’m sure God doesn’t really care that as a child I ate mud. I mean, who hasn’t?

But there are a few that I know did not make my God very happy. And I am ashamed.

I am ashamed but I am not defeated. I am ashamed but not unworthy. Because my God is a forgiving God.

 

What have you done that never gets talked about? Please share. I don’t want to be the only weird person on the world-wide-web.

 

 

 

No, He Doesn’t Wear A Ring.

Me and the Mr. have been together now roughly 7 years. This past March we took the plunge and made it official.  In a way you could say we eloped because very few people knew what our plans were until…

SURPRISE!
…the infamous Facebook announcement

We went to the courthouse just us and the boys. Said our vows, the groom kissed his bride…but there was something missing (or was there?). We didn’t have any rings. (side note: after the ceremony I did find a ring for myself).

 photo p526594885-41_zps9e3fec95.jpg

It appears that a husband not wearing his wedding ring is kind of a big deal these days. Several weeks ago, my husband had a woman (who seemed a little too interested in him) act shocked when he mentioned he was married. She proceeded to ask him where his ring was. Why didn’t he wear a ring…? And this was not the first time we had been questioned about it. So for all those wondering why my husband doesn’t wear a ring, here it is…

  • This is the biggest one. The type of work he does. Way too many times my husband has witnessed what can happen to a ring finger and the sound it makes when it pops off. #tmi for me. I am not going to be responsible for him losing his finger. #endofstory
  • We are too cheap to purchase a ring that he will only wear part-time (and it would probably end up lost).

 

And here is why I am okay with it…

  • Not wearing a ring does not make us not married. Just the same goes with wearing a ring doesn’t make us married (I’ve actually known people to do that).
  • The ring is not going to stop his eyes from wandering. Nor is it going to stop anything else. It’s called trust.
  • Wearing a ring is not going to make him love me any more than he already does.

If society thinks we need a ring to show the world that we are married and spoken for…why not get a tattoo across our foreheads that says ‘married’.

 photo PicMonkeyPhoto_zps165fd4ab.jpg

What do y’all think?  The Mr. couldn’t get one on his forehead because he wears a hat all the time…instead he got one on his chin so the world can see that he is taken and is no longer available for test-driving.

This article talks about how Prince William doesn’t wear a ring and how at the end of the Great Depression only 15% of marriages were double ring ceremonies. So what’s the big deal now? Don’t say it’s just the ole’ fashion way because obviously it’s not.

I know the Mr. loves me and a ring is not going to make that any different.

 

Does your husband wear a ring? What are your thoughts on this? Please share in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you.

 

 

The Sunday Social

Today is another edition of The Sunday Social over at Ashley Lately.

Social Sunday

1.) Gum or mints?

  • I really like them both equally but for the sake of this post I am going to choose…gum. My favorite is the Trident (fruity flavors).

2.) Tea or Coffee?

  • I love my sweet tea and coffee (with french vanilla) but sweet tea is something that I drink everyday, all day.

3.) Fruits or Veggies?

  • Definitely fruit. I love apples, oranges, strawberries, bananas, pineapple, grapes…

4.) TV or Movies?

  • TV. I enjoy a good movie but sometimes I don’t have the time to sit down and watch a complete movie.

5.) Candles or Diffusers?

  • Diffusers. I admit, it took me a while to give up the candles but there’s not 1 candle in my home now.

Have a wonderful weekend, y’all!

I’m Toni and I’m an Independent Designer with Origami Owl

Today I am linking up over at Kelly’s Korner for her Show Us Your Life Link-Up. The topic is…Show Us What You Sell!

So today I am here to tell you more about Origami Owl.

 photo lockett_zps13eda9f2.jpg

Here’s the story on how OO started:    Bella started Origami Owl with $350 and a simple dream in mind—getting a car for her 16th birthday. When she was 14, she asked her parents for a car but they said she needed to work for it. So, with all of her babysitting money and family’s support, she set out to start her own business and created Origami Owl.

Immediately, people loved creating stories with jewelry and women began asking how they could share Origami Owl with their own family and friends. We were a hit! After hearing stories about how our jewelry touched lives, it only made sense to spread some love across the country. Today, we have more than 60,000 Independent Designers who pursue their own dreams by selling our jewelry at home parties we like to call Jewelry Bars.

 photo Origami-Owl-Mission-Statement1_zps3935af5f.jpg

I absolutely love everything about Origami Owl! Every locket tells a story. A personal story. Sometimes a story that cannot be easily put into words. A locket that can change as the story of your life changes. Origami Owl is my business. It’s something I work hard at. It gives me some time away. some ‘me’ time. It has also given my family the funds to do extra ‘fun’ stuff without dipping into our regular funds.

 photo Jewelry-Bar_zps40d0961c.png

 

 photo PicMonkeyCollage_zps4c678be7.jpg

 photo PicMonkeyCollage1_zps850f6e44.jpg

Now is a great time to start your Origami Owl career! The holiday season is fast-approaching. A trip to Maui in February. Health Insurance available for all active Designers. Earn up to 50% on sales. It’s an awesome opportunity! And I want you to go to Maui with me! Also, did you know that you only have to be 12 years old to become an Owlette!

 photo 10549660_10203942702595266_71871573952088618_o_zpsafdf817d.jpg

 

For more information about fundraisers, hosting a party, placing an order or becoming a Designer…email  tonilandrus@yahoo.com. (All material now available in Spanish!)
 
Browse everything OO has to offer at www.tonilandrus.origamiowl.com.
Become a Facebook fan by clicking here.
Questions? Email me at: tonilandrus@yahoo.com
 
 

{Personal, Business & Blogging} Goals For August

Personal:

1.) A real date-night with the hubs at least once. We typically grab a bite to eat but that’s usually the extent of it. A couple of weeks ago we  went to dinner, done a little window shopping and went to a movie. It was really nice to spend that one-on-one time with him.

2.) Complete the laundry closet/hallway facelift.

3.) Stick to our budget. I am determined to get us 100% debt-free ASAP. But it’s hard. It’s really, really hard when you want to enjoy the now in life.

4.) Pay at least an extra $100 towards our debt.

5.) Get a hair-cut. I’ve been cheap long enough and it’s time to get this mop shaped back up.

 

Business {Origami Owl}:

1.) Host at least 1 Jewelry Bar.

2.) Sales of at least $250.

3.) Order new displays for my necklaces and bracelets. While on vacation our precious Jake found them and used them as chew toys.

4.) Stock-up on the new fall catalog.

5.) Set up a booth at Trade Day to get my name out there.

For more information about placing an order, hosting a party or becoming a Designer click here or shoot me an email (tonilandrus@yahoo.com)

 

Blogging:

1.) As you may have noticed, I have slacked ALOT this summer with blogging. But hey, it’s summer-time. The kids are out of school. Schedules are thrown out the window. We are just winging it, literally. So my #1 blogging goal for this month is to get back on track…publishing post at least 3 days a week.

2.) Increase my Facebook fans. If you are not already a fan of BIA, you can click here and become one today! And while you’re at it…share the page with your FB friends.

3.)  Plan a local blogger meet-up. I had thrown the idea out there to a few locals and they seemed really interested in the idea. I guess the thing holding me back is…once we meet up, what do we do? Do we have an agenda? Or just dinner and small-talk?

4.) Reach 500 pageviews.

5.) Link-up to at least 20 link parties.

 

Setting goals can be really helpful. It’s like an extension of your daily to-do list…things that you want to accomplish. It doesn’t have to be something large and extravagant. I mean seriously…one of my goals is to get a hair-cut. Who does that? It’s like setting a goal that I’m going to eat today. Really!?

Do you set monthly goals? Please share some of your goals with me…I’d love to hear about them.

The Sunday Social

Today I am linking up with Ashley over at Ashley Lately for The Sunday Social. Today’s randoms questions all have to do with the #3.

Social Sunday

1.) 3 favorite songs right now?

 

2.) 3 favorite movies that remind you of summer?

  • I’m going to have to pass on this question. I’m not much of a movie person and I definitely don’t know of a movie that would remind me of summer. (I tried).

3.) 3 favorite articles of clothing you own?

  • This is another one that I am going to have to pass. I found this link-up at the last minute and did not have the time to model my clothing and take pics. I promise to do better next week.

4.) 3 items on your wish list?

  • A new laptop. Most definitely.
  • Dining Room Table.
  • New flooring throughout our home.

5.) 3 books you would recommend to someone?

  • Calm My Anxious Heart.
  • The Purpose-Driven Life.
  • Anything written by John Maxwell.


Have a great Sunday!

$125 and a Blogiversary (but not mine)!

It’s a giveaway! And a Blogiversary for Logan Can…!

I am excited to announce that today I am joining in with Logan Can… for her 2-year blogiversary and giveaway for $125 in Paypal cash! Can I get a HOLLA?! Check it out below on how you could be the one walking away with some extra dough!! And leave me a comment below and tell what you’d do with the money.

giveaway

I can’t believe I’ve been blogging for 2 years! Time has flown. I am so grateful to all of my followers and friends that I’ve made through doing this. I have enjoyed it so much because of the wonderful community and people I have met along the way. Your comments seriously make my day!

With the help from a few friends, I am bringing you a giveaway to win $125 of Paypal Cash to celebrate! Everyone gets one free entry so be sure to enter! I will choose one winner randomly using the rafflecopter. Please note that I will check entries. If your name is selected and you did not follow the way you say you did, I will choose another winner.

I hope you all have a great weekend!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thanks! :)

Authentic Friendships…We All Need Them

Several months ago I attended a class on Sunday evening with the same very special lady that had done the Calm My Anxious Heart book study.

Let me tell you guys. She is inspiring. encouraging. and motivating. And I have grown so much personally and spiritually because of her.

She is also a blogger over on her little corner of the world-wide-web…Blessings Beyond The Barnyard.

Now back about the class. The class didn’t really have a format. We were going to do personality test. Tell our life-story (how much ever we felt comfortable sharing). There were several churches represented and we just gathered and learned and shared together as women.

Week 5 is when most of us shared our stories. And let me tell you what I learned. We are all hurting. We all have a story. None of our stories were the same but we were all hurting.

 photo life-hurts-god-heals-owp_zps4a7f5584.gif

God has given us brothers and sisters so we don’t have to go through life alone. Life is hard. And we need to have authentic friendships to make it through.

So many times it’s hard to have friendships with women. Because women can be mean. Women can be vicious. Women will slice and dice you the first chance they get. And I’ve been guilty of it myself. We all have. But let’s end it now. All the gossip, the back-stabbing, the slandering. It’s no good for any of us.

It’s okay to not be friends with everyone. But let’s be nice to everyone. And it’s okay if we don’t invite everyone over for dinner. But let’s go out of our way to help someone else in need.

We need women we can talk to and trust. Because being a woman can be hard at times…and only other women understand.

We all need authentic friendships.

 

Do you have authentic friendships? I am working on building more authentic, intentional friendships myself.