Inspirational Quote: Set Yourself Free

Inspirational Quote: Never Quit

Inspirational Quote: Our Battles

Printable Football Scrapbook Pages

Have a little football star in the family?  These printable football scrapbook layouts are a great way to capture special moments in the upcoming football season.  


Print them and add your photos.  Stay tuned for our sports theme layouts.  

Turn It Up Tuesday – Week 43

     Welcome to the 43rd week of Turn It Up Tuesday!

Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this blog hop the best that it could be!
As you may know, Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic…and having fun! Link up your favorite posts and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments — anything at all, as long as it is family-friendly. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time!

SPONSOR OF THE MONTH

Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother Blog

Rhonda
Rhonda is a single mom blogger from the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. She writes on parenting and family, home gardening, and her thoughts on life.
Stop by and check out her blog…it’s definitely a great read!
Are you interested in having your blog or website featured in this spot? Then, sponsor Turn It Up Tuesday for a month! Click here! It’s only $5 for an entire month!

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

TUT Hosts 6.28.04 2

(from the top – left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings | Jessica from The Wondering Brain | Cathy from A Peek Into My Paradise | April from 100lb Countdown | Becka from Probably Craftin | Carolyn from A Lavender Life | Margaret from The Mother Rising | Kae from Where’s My Pacifier? | Rachel from Craving Some Creativity | Cindy from Mom Maven | Kimberly from Keystrokes by Kimberly| Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother | Lisa from The ‘Fix It’ Stitch | Karen from Quinton Wench | Jillian from Baby Doodah | Katy from Chaos & Kiddos | Tenns from New Mama Diaries

And welcome our awesome guest hosts for July!

TUT Jul 2014

(from the top – left to right)
Katie from View From The Fridge | Elie from Organizer By Day | Ashley from 3 Little Greenwoods | Alycia from Crazily Normal | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Victoria from Giveaways 4 Mom | Tara from Anything & Everything

Interested in being a guest host or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly co-hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis.  We’re now accepting guest hosts for August & September.

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

Strawberry-Popsicle-Vertical-754x1024
Elie chose Fresh Strawberry Popsicles from Robyn’s View. “These Strawberry Popsicles from Robyn’s View are so easy and sound absolutely delicious! With only three ingredients you can have yourself a tasty summer treat!”
Tenns also chose this post. “I love simple and sweet recipes, and that’s exactly what these popsicles are. Not to mention delicious looking. I’m a huge strawberry lover and these are right up my alley. Can’t wait to give them a go!”
BA4
Ashley chose Room By Room Recap – Foyer & Stairs from 702 Park Project. “With an amazing amount of hard work and dedication, Sarah from 702 Park Project turned their green trim, multi-colored walls, and gold carpeting on the stairs to clean and crisp foyer. I’m following along to see the rest of their house renovations!”
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Victoria chose What Should A Blogger Do When Her Identity is Revealed? from Surviving & Thriving in the Second Year of My Divorce. “I chose this blog post because of the title. I felt as though all bloggers used their real name and before reading this post I would of thought the bloggers was named Kat. It was interesting and it held my attention so good that it read it entirely.”
Chocolate Peanut Butter Biscotti (7 of 7)
Cathy chose Easy, Delicious, Chocolate Peanut Butter Biscotti Recipe from Tikkido. “We love biscotti and I haven’t made any before…now! I can’t wait to try these Chocolate Peanut Butter Biscotti!!”
Using-Linkys
Alycia chose Using Linkys to Gain Readers, Followers, Friends and Fans from The Mom Maven. “I think this is a great post because I know, as a blogger myself, it can sometimes be difficult to gain followers and really get your blog out there. There often isn’t anyone giving you tips on how to be effective, so I think this is a great tool to use!”
Jillian also chose this post. “We all know that linking up with other blogs is important, but what people don’t realize is that there are right and wrong ways to do it. Cindy does a wonderful job explaining how to get the most out of link-ups and how to follow the rules!!”
April also chose this post. “Many people, including myself, struggle to actually gain a good following from linky parties. I love that Cindy broke it into four easy steps to make your efforts worth it!”
Cilantro-Lime-Shrimp-Avocado-Chickpea-Salad
Katy chose Cilantro Lime Shrimp, Avocado, Chickpea Salad from Luv a Bargain. “Just reading the title of this post made my mouth water. This sounds like such a fabulously tasty combination and the perfect fit for a summer lunch. I can’t wait to give this recipe a try!”
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Rhonda chose I’m too old for roller coasters from Just A Touch of Crazy. “It’s difficult to admit that you’re maturing and your body can no longer handle things that you once enjoyed. It’s even more difficult to admit it in front of family and friends. I admire this mom’s courage for giving it one last try.”
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Rachel chose Creating a Meal Plan Around Seasonal Produce from Little House Living. “I chose this post because she gives some great recipes for using up seasonal produce and how to get the most out of fresh fruits and veggies. Even if not fresh from a garden, buying vegetables in season is healthy and budget savvy.”
Jessica also chose this post. “Loved it! I was put on a diet restriction by my doctor which consists of eating LOTS of veggies. Eating healthy can get super expensive. Her post came just in time for me! it’s a lot cheaper to buy during the season and of course we can always grow our own food!”
anthropologieknockoffheader
Karen chose Anthropologie Knock-Off: Sharpie Art from Dwell Beautiful. “A great ‘knock-off’ project – a quick and unique way of creating art for the home.”
Watermelon-Smoothie
Cindy chose Watermelon Smoothie from Krafts & Kiddos. “I have a lot of watermelon in the fridge right now and I’m the only person in my house who likes it so I have been on the hunt for new ways to enjoy this sweet summer treat. This smoothie is a great idea!”
German-Chocolate-Brownies-Memories-by-the-Mile
Stacey chose German Chocolate Brownies from Memories by the Mile. “When I was growing up my mom would make German Chocolate cake from scratch and it was always one of my favorites. Sadly my kids don’t like coconut or nuts, so I have not been able to make one for years. And as everyone already knows, I love brownies! Especially topped with powdered sugar! These look absolutely divine! Thank you so much for sharing!”
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Katie chose Lonely Keys from Woods of Bell Trees. “I love this simple, but glam project! My keys are also lonely, and this is just the thing I need! Love the leather and touch of gold! Heather did a great job!”
Letter to my unborn child
Natasha chose Letter To My Unborn Child from Mummy Goes Mad. “I can still remember when I was my pregnant with my son, and all the emotions and feelings that I had before he was born.  Maria expresses this in her post so beautifully! Great post!”
Tara also chose this post. “I loved reading this post. It made me teary eyed reading Maria’s letter to her unborn child. Being a mom for the first time, I realize all the emotions that you go through while being pregnant, which can become very overwhelming at times. Maria expressed those emotions in her letter to unborn child, I thought it was so sweet!”
Blog truths
The post with the most clicks is 10 truths of why my blog is not successful from The Cookie Puzzle.
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitupbuttonfeature1_zps09bd5c75.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

 

And the Best of the Best is…

Letter to my unborn child

Letter To My Unborn Child from Mummy Goes Mad
Using-Linkys
As the Best of the Best, you win free ad space on Epic Mommy Adventures for 30 days! Please showcase the badge below with pride on your blog!
Please send an e-mail to Natasha at 1EpicMommy@gmail.com and she will provide you with all the details!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitupbuttonbest_zps00692ef1.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

So now that you’ve met our sponsor of the month, our hosts and co-hosts, and the Featured and the Best of the Best…

let’s get started!

  • Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back.
  • Link up as many posts as you’d like! The more, the merrier!
  • Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends!
Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitup1_zps05216d89.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week!

Never miss another Turn It Up Tuesday! Sign up for reminder e-mails!

Interested in reading all of the Featured Posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter’s board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

 

Inspirational Quote: Michael Jackson

Printable Inspirational Quote: Life

Turn It Up Tuesday – Week 42

Welcome to the 42nd week of Turn It Up Tuesday!
Hope you all had a Happy 4th of July!!!
We received some amazing 4th of July-inspired posts and summer-inspired posts – they were all so much fun to read! Thanks!
Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this blog hop the best that it could be!
As you may know, Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic…and having fun! Link up your favorite posts and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments — anything at all, as long as it is family-friendly. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time!

SPONSOR OF THE MONTH

Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother Blog

Rhonda
Rhonda is a single mom blogger from the Washington, DC Metropolitan area. She writes on parenting and family, home gardening, and her thoughts on life.
Stop by and check out her blog…it’s definitely a great read!
Are you interested in having your blog or website featured in this spot? Then, sponsor Turn It Up Tuesday for a month! Click here! It’s only $5 for an entire month!

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

TUT Hosts 6.28.04 2

(from the top – left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma’s Ramblings | Jessica from The Wondering Brain | Cathy from A Peek Into My Paradise | April from 100lb Countdown | Becka from Probably Craftin | Carolyn from A Lavender Life | Margaret from The Mother Rising | Kae from Where’s My Pacifier? | Rachel from Craving Some Creativity | Cindy from Mom Maven | Kimberly from Keystrokes by Kimberly| Rhonda from Mother 2 Mother | Lisa from The ‘Fix It’ Stitch | Karen from Quinton Wench | Jillian from Baby Doodah | Katy from Chaos & Kiddos | Tenns from New Mama Diaries

And welcome our awesome guest hosts for July!

TUT Jul 2014

(from the top – left to right)
Katie from View From The Fridge | Elie from Organizer By Day | Ashley from 3 Little Greenwoods | Alycia from Crazily Normal | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Victoria from Giveaways 4 Mom | Tara from Anything & Everything

Interested in being a guest host or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly co-hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis.  We’re now accepting guest hosts for August & September.

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

pic
Victoria chose How To Not Get Your Feelings Hurt When Blogging from 702 Park Project. “I chose [this post] because this article discusses a topic that I have not seen throughout the web before. As bloggers we will have people say things to us that we do not like and this blog post shows bloggers how to develop a thick layer of skin and not give up blogging because someone has said something about their blog that they do not like.”
Gold-Studded-Plank-Wall
Ashley chose Gold Studded Plank Wall from Houseologie. “This Gold Studded Plank Wall is absolutely amazing! Not only do the planks add texture but the small gold nail heads give the space the perfect amount of glam. Love it!”
minismorescheesecakes3
Elie chose Mini S’mores Cheesecakes from Annie’s Noms. “Nothing says summer like s’mores and these Mini S’mores Cheesecakes are perfect for any party! Looks delicious!”
Hallway-Makeover-Reveal-Pinterest
Karen chose Hallway Makeover – Final Reveal from Houselogie. “This hallway makeover reveal caught my eye because I couldn’t believe the transformation. It looks like a different place entirely. Love the black and white theme. Food for thought!”
Katie also chose this post. “I am absolutely IN LOVE with everything about this bright hallway makeover from Leigh Anne! First of all, it’s white (my favorite color). Secondly, all the details are just gorgeous! The planked walls with gold tacks, the big arrow, the gold personalized frames, the hanging planter … All of it is simply stunning!”
smoothies2
Katy chose Belly Blasting Smoothies from Happy House and Home. “Any post that starts with Belly Blasting is #1 on my list these days. I can’t wait to put my Ultimate Ninja to the test with these healthy recipes! I love that they are high in protein and will keep you feeling full until your next meal.”
Summer-Family-Fun
Alycia chose Top 10 Family Activities ~Cheap Family Fun! from A Proverbs 31 Wife. “I chose this one because I am always looking for new and fun (cheap is a bonus) ideas for the family for summer!!! So great to see what other families like to do!!”
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Silvie chose Patchwork Skirt Tutorial from Almost Supermom. “I really liked how easy her tutorial is to follow and how beautiful the skirt came out even though it’s easy to make.”
acowboyslife gentleman
Rhonda chose Teaching Your Son to Become a Gentleman from A Cowboy’s Life. “I applaud this mom for taking responsibility for teaching her son to be a gentleman. I agree chivalry is dying in our society; acknowledging that it starts at home and demonstrating the steps on how to become a gentleman is a step in the right direction.”
conner 1
April chose My Son Found His Passion from Two Teens and Their Mama. “As parents, we strive for our children to be the best… but we also need to remind ourselves, that they need to be the best them, not the best that we want them to be. College is not for everyone and Lana reminds us why and how this is important.”
fourth_of_july_chalkboard
Cathy chose Red, White, & BBQ from Eat, Drink, and be Mary. “These are adorable! I can’t wait to make these for our next BBQ!”
FreebieFriday1
Jillian chose Freebie Friday | Daily To Do List Printable from New Mama Diaries. “I chose this post because I think we’re all often on the hunt for the best way to keep track of our “to-dos.” This printable is gorgeous and is the perfect option for your daily list!”
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Jessica chose Mistakes | Learn and Let Go from Cayla & Ashley. “Awesome advice especially coming from 2 beautiful young girls! I don’t know where I would be today if I didn’t make any mistakes in my life. Their advice is good food for thought for everyone :-).”
Natasha also chose this post. “Letting go and moving forward is my motto for this year. And Cayla & Ashley have beautifully summed this up and have shown us all that mistakes are part of being human. Beautiful post!”
Outdoor-Makeover-Challenge-Final-Reveal-@-making-it-in-the-mountains
Tara chose Outdoor Makeover Challenge: Big Reveal!!! from Making It In The Mountains. “I just love everything about this outdoor living space! From the gorgeous table to all the little details and accessories, everything really came together and looks amazing!”
lemon-sugar-cookies-4
Stacey chose Sweet Saturday: Lemon Sugar Cookies from Adventures of a Jayhawk Mommy. “The hubby and I absolutely love lemony desserts, and these look wonderful! I can’t wait to try these, for a wonderful summer treat! Thank you so much for sharing!”
How to Make Your Blog More User-Friendly
The post with the most clicks is How to Make Your Blog More User-Friendly from B is for…
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitupbuttonfeature1_zps09bd5c75.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

 

And the Best of the Best is…

conner 1
My Son Found His Passion from Two Teens and Their Mama
tumblr_melyylag0I1rdes1jo1_500
Mistakes | Learn and Let Go from Cayla & Ashley
As the Best of the Best, you win free ad space on Epic Mommy Adventures for 30 days! Please showcase the badge below with pride on your blog!
Please send an e-mail to Natasha at 1EpicMommy@gmail.com and she will provide you with all the details!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitupbuttonbest_zps00692ef1.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

So now that you’ve met our sponsor of the month, our hosts and co-hosts, and the Featured and the Best of the Best…

let’s get started!

  • Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back.
  • Link up as many posts as you’d like! The more, the merrier!
  • Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends!
Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!
Epic Mommy Adventures
<div align="center"><a href="http://epicmommyadventures.com" title="Epic Mommy Adventures" target="_blank"><img src="http://epicmommyadventures.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/200pxturnitup1_zps05216d89.png" alt="Epic Mommy Adventures" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week!

Never miss another Turn It Up Tuesday! Sign up for reminder e-mails!

Interested in reading all of the Featured Posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter’s board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

Guide to Companion Planting Book Review

I am now a book reviewer for Crown Publishing, a subsidiary, of Random House.  I will be reviewing various books published by their company.  I jumped at the opportunity to become a member, I love to read and I also love to have reference books around if I need to refresh my memory on a particular subject. As you know, I’m a home gardener.  I received a copy of The Mix & Match Guide to Companion Planting by Josie Jeffery to review.  This book was heaven sent, as I companion plant my kitchen garden.  


I was impressed with the book when I opened the package. The cover and binding of the book are beautiful.  It would be easy to wipe off dirt or accidental spills and the illustrations as you see are just lovely.  It’s a hardcover book with a strong binding.  You won’t have to worry about this book falling apart, it is quality.  


The book is very detailed, but not to a point where you would loose interest in the details.  For example, it gives the history of companion planting and how it is used around the world.  It provides information on soil preparation, manure, composting, and setting up rain barrels to help water your garden.  This is information that you truly need to know if you want to become a sustainable gardener and do it efficiently and at minimal cost.  I have been composting for years, added manure, have devised a method to keep weeds down, but have yet to add a rain barrel.  I hope to add a barrel this summer for next year’s use.  


Lets move to the content. I love how the book is designed.  The book is set up with 2 cards, for a lack of a better word.  One card has the name of the vegetable/flower along with information on when to plant, where it should be planted, growing tips and when to harvest.  Opposite the first card is the second card which shows a beautiful picture of the plant.  The content is set up with three sections, which is great if you want to hold your place to make notes on a particular plant, but still want to browse another section or find a particular plant in another section.  


In the back of the book is a place to make notes.  I think the books to beautiful to write in, so I would make notes elsewhere.  It also contain an index in the back of the book, which will help you find a particular page for the plant you wish to research.  


I have this book a thumbs up and 5 stars.  It’s actually one of the most beautiful and informative gardening books that I have come across, and it’s an easy read. The book retails for $17.99 in the states and $20.99 in Canada. I would encourage you to purchase a copy, especially if you’re a beginner gardener.  It’s a great reference for the advance gardener as well.  I’m grateful that I now own a copy.  


Note:  I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books for this review.  



If You Want To Be Mentored You Must Show Up

People can be transparent if you’re willing to look hard enough.  Several months ago I was contacted by a young lady to be her mentor.  As a single mother who survived raising my daughter, I reach out and try to help other single mothers on how they can be successful too.  I can relate to being a teen mom, getting married, divorced, and left to raise my daughter and fend for myself.  I don’t post about my mentoring sessions on Mother 2 Mother, because of privacy reasons.  It’s personal for me and personal for the person being mentored, but I do post on my experiences because moving forward is hard work and not for the faint at heart. If I can pull someone else up or help move them forward, it does my heart good.   

Being raised in a dysfunctional/alcoholic home, teen mom and divorced category was enough for me. I knew I had to break the cycle, and so I did. Breaking out of these categories requires a willingness to listen, accept where we come from, and hard work to get out of it.     

Before I accept a position as a mentor for young ladies and not so young I have a test that I give. It lets me know if the person who is requesting to be mentored is serious about growing and moving forward, if they’re willing to do the necessary work to survive as a single mother, and allows me to see where their head is.  I ask 4 questions and I require a written response.  I like for it to be in writing so they can reference it during the course of their journey and it serves as a reminder of where they started when they arrive finally at their destination. Here’s the questions:  

  1. Tell me about your life and how you ended up where you.
  2. Tell me about your children and your relationship with your ex.   
  3. Where do you want to be in 5 years?
  4. Are you willing to work to educate and better yourself?  If so, list 5 goals.    
I never heard from the young lady again.  She must have thought I had a magic wand and all that was required was me waving it in front of her.  If only life was that easy. I saw right through her when I didn’t receive a response.  She wanted an easy way out, unfortunately there is no easy way out.  Ladies, this is why we need to make wise decisions in our life.  People who look for a easy way out don’t realize they are transparent.  I see you!  She really didn’t want a mentor, she just wanted me to give her a solution.  Excuses and why you can’t do this or that will not take you down the road of success.  Excuses are a way for you to stay where you are.  My response, more power to you. If you don’t think that you can do better why should I. If  you can’t answer basic questions, you’re not willing to do the work and you’re not going anywhere anyway.  

Reminds me of this single mom who choose to stay at home with her child, but was asking others for thousands of dollars to help pay her bills.  If you can’t pay your bills, maybe you’re not in a position to be a stay at home mom, hello. Thousands of single mothers go to work everyday, so they can pay bills and their children turn out just fine. Just as important, if you want someone to mentor you, show up and be prepared to do the work. What I’m saying doesn’t have anything to do with me thinking I’m better or not having empathy for another’s position or situation, but sometimes we just need to get real, take a good look at ourselves in the mirror, and realize that we’re where we are because of decisions that we make. If it’s not improving your life and moving your forward, why stay in the situation and continue doing the same things over and over. You must be willing to open your eyes, and take a good look at why you’re where you are. True, there are many who have fallen on hard times or have ended up in a bad situation, but you don’t have to stay there. It’s a choice.  

Over the course of the years I realized that I don’t have to see things your way and you don’t have to see things my way.  That’s the beauty of living in this great country, but this is my blog so I’m writing from the way I see things.  I know that we don’t all have the same situations nor are our experiences the same, but some things are universal.  When you get real, stop making excuses for yourself and what you don’t want to do, you’ll put yourself in a position to do what you need to do.  

Image courtesy of clipart101.net.