Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Life Is What You Make Of It: Live Your Life, Not Someone Else's

OK~ Today I am reminded that it's all about priorities. Life can get really crazy at times and toss in a spouse that works the shift that others don't want to work. My husband has worked nights for several years. He has chosen to work those hours and he likes what he does.

Just this morning I came across a statement on social media that went something like this. "You work those hours, you don't have a life." This got me thinking. I think it's fair to say that when I start thinking, I really start thinking!

Life is what we choose to make out of it. For our family, travel has been a high priority through the years. Sure, we could have chosen to stay home and lounged around on new furniture, but we chose to get out and explore. Just the other day our 23 year old son said to me, "Mom, I really never appreciated all of the places I got to visit while growing up, but I do now!" Yes, he gets it! And no, we have never invested in "new" furniture, as 80% of it has been used or slightly used.

My husband and I do make it a point to get to our local YMCA over the lunch hour as much as we can. The YMCA is quiet and we get our exercise in- makes for a win, win situation. Some folks may say, "That's not living your life." But again, it's all about priorities. What is important to you, may not be important to the next person.

In the long run, it's all about you living your life. It's not about someone else saying, "They don't have a life, as they work those hours." It's true, families do have to make some sacrifices, but could someone enlighten me and tell me what career is out there where you don't have to make sacrifices? It's realistically not feasible for most parents to attend every single sporting event, music event or competition their children are in. One of us tried our best to attend our kids' extra curricular events through the years, and did make it to most. And it's fair to say that people thought we had "weird" hours of quiet at our home. But hey, when someone in your home works nights, they do need their sleep.

What's important to you? Happiness comes to all of us in different ways, shapes, and forms. We must be doing something right in this house, as we've been married 27+ years and we keep moving forward. Life is not all roses and sunshine, there are a lot of ups and downs. Believe me, we've had our share. We've pulled up our bootstraps more times than I care to count, but hey, we are making the best of every single day and we do have a life that we enjoy! After All, It's All In a Mom's Day, Rig

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Blogger Opportunity: September Travel Packages

Alice at Adventure Into Domesticland brings you:

❤ ❤ ❤ Prize Packages ❤ ❤ ❤

There will be one winner everyday! Winners will be emailed the day they are picked. A running list will be posted on my site and be updated daily (or as often as I can). Each winner will be able to choose from the following packages:

Viva Las Vegas: 4 day and 3 night accommodations at a 3+ star hotel on the strip in Las Vegas, NV for 2 adults! (25 years or older) and a $500 dollar Funbook! (with cash, chips, meals, tokens & show tickets!)

Fabulous Florida: 3 days and 2 nights of accommodations for 2, winners chooses city in Florida! Location Choices: Cocoa Beach, Daytona Beach, Ft. Lauderdale, Key West, Miami Beach, New Smyrna, Orlando, Palm Beach, St. Augustine, St. Petersburg

Take A Break: 3 days and 2 nights of accommodations for 2, winners chooses destination! Location Choices: Bronson, Mo - Cancun, Mex - Gatlinburg, TN - Honolulu, HI - Lake Tahoe, CA - Las Vegas, NV - Mazatlan, Mex - Napa Valley, CA - Palm Springs, CA - Pocono Mtns, PA - Puerto Vallarta, Mex - Scottsdale, AZ - White Mtn, CA

One FREE Link with announcement post OR $5 to participate.
(Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest)
Additional Paid links available for $2 each.
Email Subscription, RSS or Feedburn links for $3.
Picketfence, Daily Vote or Daily Comments for $5.

Co-Host Spots Available - $10
You will receive any 5 links of your choice on the Rafflecopter, a link to your blog in the giveaway post and social media mentions.
Benefits of becoming a Co-Host include, increasing your followers, increase your traffic, increase number of backlinks/links in, and help better stats, ranks, and ratings.

The person who signs up the most referrals will be given a co-host spot for FREE!

Sign Up Here!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

The Barrel: A Tradition In North Iowa

OK~ There's something to be said about that "one" restaurant that you always take your kids to through the years. When our boys were growing up we spent a lot of time boating, fishing and water skiing on Clear Lake in North Iowa. One of our favorite places to dine was The Barrel.

Fast forward several years and it becomes news that The Barrel may close and sell out to Casey's. Casey's, an Iowa based company, happens to be right next door to this historic eatery in Clear Lake, Iowa. I think it's fair to say that folks in North Iowa are tired of historic buildings, eateries and the like being sold out to corporate America. When word spread that this was even a possibility, people in the community really became interested!

I had to think to myself, "When was the last time I had eaten at The Barrel?" Turns out, I had just eaten there the Thursday before. I stopped there before I headed to Thursdays on Main in Downtown Clear Lake, Iowa. I wanted some broasted chicken- as it is THE BEST broasted chicken on the planet. I love my 2 wing dinner that I love to indulge in when I dine at The Barrel. Toss in the classic Barrel French Dressing and ice cream for dessert, my mouth is now watering!

I am excited as the community here in North Iowa is stepping up to the plate to keep a piece of history alive in North Iowa. The historic Surf Ballroom is just a block from The Barrel, and we all know that The Surf Ballroom is where Buddy Holly held his last performance.

The Barrel came to life in 1958 and it was the place to be and continues to be a popular destination restaurant. Sadly, the building and the kitchen are in need of desperate repair. Seth Thackery, the owner, does not want to sell out to corporate America. His dream is to keep this part of Clear Lake's history alive and strong! If you'd like to learn more about The Barrel, reach out to Seth at 641-357-2600, he'd love to share historical photos with you and more!

An application to Robert Irvine's Food Network Show, Restaurant Impossible has been placed and Seth Thackery has been interviewed by the team of the show. We now wait and see what happens. How cool would it be to have the crew of Restaurant Impossible in North Iowa? The thought of really placing Clear Lake, Iowa on a map excites me! From the historic Surf Ballroom to The Barrel- we've got a lot to showcase to the world, right here in North Iowa.

So, join me and be a part of the excitement. If everyone steps up and does one small thing that they enjoy, The Barrel will continue and grow! You can volunteer through this form, Save The Barrel.Com. If painting is your thing, there's a place for you. If electric work is your thing, there's a place for you too. Whatever your specialty, you can be a part of history, by joining in to help save one of North Iowa's most famous destination restaurants.

I hope the tradition of boating on Clear Lake with The Barrel can continue for others, as our family enjoyed those years and I can honestly say that I would not trade those days for the world! After All, It's All In a Mom's Day, Right?

Monday, August 18, 2014

Back To School Palooza Giveaway

Welcome to the

Back-to-School Giveaway Palooza

Sponsored by: Failing Perfect, Dibsies Personalization Station, Zazzle, Fundanoodle, and Educational Insights


Hosted & Organized by: Failing Perfect

Co-hosted by: Here We Go Again, Ready?, Intelligent Domestications, Heartbeats ~ Soul Stains, Spaceships and Laser Beams, Peace and Chaos, and The More The Merrier

 I can't believe it's that time of year again! It's time to get those kids ready to go back to school. It seems like just yesterday when we were looking forward to the start of summer. Summer goes by quickly and we've got a bundle of fun to share with all of you!

Because we love our readers - and their kids - we want to help you get ready for back-to-school by helping one lucky reader get the year started with a bang. That is why we teamed up with our blogger friends and a few generous sponsors to bring you the chance to win this fantastic giveaway! One winner is going to receive a prize package worth over $430! This giveaway includes something for everyone in the family from preschoolers through college students. Here is what is included:
  • Kindle Fire HD 7" Tablet, Wifi, 16 GB  & $100 Target Gift Card from Failing Perfect (Retail Value: $269.00)
  • Personalized Lunch Box & Personalized Backpack from Dibsies Personalization Station (Retail Value: $78.00)
  • $50 Zazzle Gift Code from Zazzle
  • Hot Dots Laugh It Up! Math Vocabulary Cards for grades 1-3, Hot Dots Reading Informational Text for grades 4-6, Hot Dots Pen, & GeoSafari Jr. My First Microscope for ages 3+ from Educational Insights(Retail Value: $79.95)
  • The winner's choice of one activity kit:  I Can Bead, Lace, Rip, Trace!, I Can Pound!, I Can Build Uppercase! or I Can Build Lowercase! from Fundanoodle (Retail Value: $32.99) 
Back-to-School Palooza Giveaway: The Details
  • Giveaway will begin on August 18th, 2014 and will end at 11:59 PM, Mountain Time (US) on September 2nd, 2014.
  • Open to residents in the continental US, 18 years or older.
  • One entrant per household.
  • Void where prohibited by law.
  • No purchase necessary to enter or win.
  • Winner will have 24 Hours to respond to winner notification email, or prize will be forfeited and another winner will be chosen.
  • Winner will be chosen via random.org.
  • The winning entry will be verified.
  • Sponsors will be individually responsible for prize fulfillment.
If you agree to the above terms, then enter using the Giveaway Form below. Good Luck!! 

Back-to-School Giveaway Palooza

Good Luck!

Disclosure:  This blog did not receive compensation and is not responsible for prize fulfillment. This post may contain affiliate links. By participating in the Sweepstakes, each entrant unconditionally accepts and agrees to comply with and abide by these rules and the decisions of Failing Perfect ("Sponsor"), which shall be final and binding in all respects. Failing Perfect is responsible for the collection, submission or processing of Entries and the overall administration of the giveaway. This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, andor any other social media. Please contact michelle@failingperfect.com with any questions, comments or problems related to the Sweepstakes. 
If you would like your product or service featured on a similar giveaway, contact michelle@failingperfect.com for more information.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Tips For Making The New School Year A Positive Experience

OK~ I was recently reminded that it takes all kind of people to make our world go around, including the negative people that can bring us down in an instant. The new school year has kicked off for many and according to some posts in social media, families are already struggling with how to handle the chaos. And what do I mean by chaos? The homework, friends, and just life in general. Our kids are expected to be "well rounded" by participating in activities that they may not have an interest in, but the parents do. Homework looks to be such that parents can't answer a simple question when it comes to their child asking for help. How did we get to this point?

It appears that our society has set the bar pretty high, as we expect our kids to be perfect. Well, let me tell you, there are no perfect children in this world, including mine that are now 19 and 23. I personally feel that when we let our kids be themselves and live their own lives, they will be much happier people. Now the road is not always smooth, as it can often be bumpy. But you know what? We all learn from our mistakes and grow as people from them. I see nothing wrong with that. I know that I personally have learned a lot from the mistakes I have made in my life, and there have been many. But society as a whole, tends to frown on mistakes, and that my friends needs to change. Instead of accusing and labeling, we need to reach out and help. A helping hand goes much further than an accusation.

One of the biggest mistakes I see a lot of people make is welcoming negativity into their lives. Why invite it in? Boot negativity to the curb, as it will make you a healthier, stronger, and happier person. Again, a simple way to grow from a mistake! By getting rid of the negativity you will have learned from a mistake and be able to move forward with your life.

Kids put a lot of pressure on themselves to perform well in school, so much that many pressure themselves to shut down. That's when we all need to step back and say, "Woah, too much is too much!" Families need to take charge and speak up, as they play a very important role when it comes to their child's education. By working with a teacher and a school administrator positive changes can happen. Nobody will get anywhere by accusing one party for this and another party for that. When we all work together our kids win.

So, with a new school year upon us. I challenge you, as a family, to make it clear that it's OK to make mistakes and grow from them. There is nothing to be ashamed of when a mistake is made, it's an opportunity for growth. Be the best that you can be and you will shine. Kindness goes a long ways in our society. Do you remember the last time you smiled at someone while walking down the street? Try it, you may like what you experience! After All, It's All In a Mom's Day, Right?