Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stationery card

Blessed Family Religious Christmas Card
Turn family pictures into personalized Christmas cards.
View the entire collection of cards.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Family Photo (what I wore)

Lately, I've been feeling really dissatisfied with my wardrobe. Being a stay at home mom, I don't really have any reason for getting dressed up, or even getting much beyond presentable. The majority of my days revolve around chasing down my increasingly mobile one year old, doing laundry, vacuuming, grocery shopping, making dinner, supervising homework, going for walks outside and changing countless diapers. The likelihood that I will end up dirty or covered in food from Isabelle is high.

It's glamorous. Living the dream.

So most days, you'll find me in ratty shorts and a t-shirt. Leggings and a tee. Every now and then, I'll spice things up and choose jean shorts and a fitted shirt.

But lately, I just feel sloppy. I still have no occasion for which I need to look nicer, and my daily activities with a chance of dirtiness are still the same.

I want to look nicer...but for what? To crawl around on the floor picking up toys? Kneeling at the side of the bathtub bathing baby? Seems unnecessary. But I see all these stylish women, and quite honestly, I'm envious.

Anyway, we took pictures for Isabelle's first birthday a few weeks ago, and took a few new family photos as well. It was a nice excuse to look a little more put together. Nothing fancy. Just better than the typical "I'm a stay at home mom" outfit.

My skirt and tank are from Loft. I got them this summer, my very first purchase from Loft. My jacket is old school bebe that I've had for years. It's a classic.

Ideally, I'd love to be a little dressier and more feminine like this everyday...but it just doesn't seem very practical.

What's your typical outfit on any given day? 

Linking up to What I Wore Wedneday at The Pleated Poppy

A little bit of everything...

But not all of anything.

I feel like that's the theme to my life these days. I'm doing a little bit of everything, but not all of anything. In other words, everything feels like it's half-assed, and I'm constantly behind.

I write out long to-do lists, but never manage to check everything off.

Sometimes I like to put a positive spin on it, and think of it as multi-tasking, but the truth is, I feel like progress isn't being made if I'm not completing anything.

For example, I do a few loads of laundry, but then my clean clothes basket overflows.

Or I start to go through stuff that gets piled on shelves, but then start doing something else halfway through and leave the top shelf all cluttered with junk.

Most days, I sweep and clean the floor, and 20 minutes later, you can't even tell.

And don't even get me started on my living room. It's in a constant state of toy-explosion.

I often wonder if getting some of many things done is better or worse than getting all of just one or two things done. What do you think?

P.S. The winner of the Pillsbury Sweet Moments giveaway was commenter #11
Congratulations to Brandon and Emily Judson!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Sweet Moments {and giveaway}

Business first!
The TEN winners of the Paper Coterie giveaway are:

#23: mandajen
#5: Kara (itsadoglickbabyworld)
#9: Samantha (adventureswithgwen)
#27: An Irish Italian Blessing
#24: Heather M (somekindofwonderful)
#14: Jess (jessexplainsitall)
#20: Amanda
#1: Ginger (talesfromthezoo)
#12: Carrie (fromtheheart)
#2: Gail (sophisticatedsteps)

I will TRY and track down an email address for each of you, but if you see that you're on my list, PLEASE email me at megandyanray at gmail dot com, so I can send you your gift code for $40 and free shipping :) Thanks so much for always taking the time to read and comment on my blog!!

In other words, I always thought that if it wasn't financially feasible for us to be a one income family, that I would go back to work again. But now that Isabelle is one, I'm beginning to rethink that plan. After all, she's turning into quite the little helper!

I'm thinking maybe I could rent her out by the hour? Maybe start her own little "handy baby" business?

And lastly...
Have I mentioned that I'm all about the sweets? That dessert is actually a necessity in my life? It's true!
And Pillsbury is now my new best friend for this product they had me review for y'all.
Pillsbury Sweet Moments.

Sweet Moments is a new line from Pillsbury. You'll find it in the refrigerated section of your grocery store, near all the other refrigerated doughs by Pillsbury. Sweet Moments are ready to eat desserts, no baking or preparation required!

These ready-to-eat, bite size brownies are layered with delicious fillings, covered in a cocoa-kissed shell and topped off with a cocoa drizzle.
  • Sweet Moments are now available in two delicious new flavors, each with a combination of rich, luxurious brownie and velvety cheesecake: Caramel Brownie Cheesecake and Raspberry Brownie Cheesecake
I opted to try the Caramel Brownie Cheesecake, and it did not disappoint! To me, it made for a very moist, very chocolatey mouthful. Perhaps I don't have a very sensitive palate, but I couldn't really distinguish too much of a cheesecake flavor in this dessert. Definitely delicious, but again, not much cheesecake. A word of warning though - these are "bite sized" for sure, and one won't be enough!
The prize pack that I received came with two coupons for any Pillsbury Sweet Moments product, a Sweet Moments mug, a Sweet Moments hardback journal, and a soft cozy blanket. It's pretty much everything you need for a cozy autumn evening. 

Luckily for all of you, one lucky reader of Loving the little things will get to win the same prize pack that I did! All you have to do is a leave a comment on this post, telling me your favorite thing about the autumn season. 

For me, it's all about the pumpkin baked goods, the chilly but still comfortable temperatures, pretty colored leaves, and getting all cuddled up in the evenings. 

Giveaway closes Monday, September 19 at 9:00 am CST.
Winner will be selected via, announced on the blog, and notified by email on Monday, September 19. Good luck!

In the interest of full disclosure: Pillsbury® Sweet Moments®, information, and giveaway have been provided by General Mills through MyBlogSpark. I received no compensation for my review, and my thoughts are entirely my own. 

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Things on Tuesday

I have so many random things to blog about, there's no way I could make them flow into a traditionally written post. Thus, the bulleted list.

--I am trying to transition Isabelle out of my bed and into her crib. She has slept in my bed since she was born, and it worked out well for me as a breastfeeding mom. But I'd like to wean her now, and I'd like her to sleep on her own, and I'd like a bed free from little feet in my face. So far, it is going TERRIBLY. Like, worse than any other account I've ever heard. We're only a few days in, and day one she cried for two solid hours, day two she cried for three solid hours, and some days she just didn't want to nap, period. THREE HOURS, my friends. As soon as I leave her in her crib, she stands up and cries and screams constantly. She's temporarily consoled when I go back in, lay her back down and pat her for a few moments, but the crying resumes immediately when I leave again. Yikes. If y'all have any getting baby to sleep words of wisdom, by all means, SEND THEM MY WAY. Unfortunately, since Isabelle is one, I feel like a lot of the advice targeted to BABIES doesn't really apply to her.
 I'm only smiling because I'm in here for a photo op, 
and you're not trying to force me to sleep.

--Not many people have commented on the Paper Coterie Giveaway. What's up with that?! You get a $40 gift code to use however you'd like, which makes it a totally awesome giveaway. Go comment on that post. There are going to be TEN winners, and one just might be you!

--The winner of the Lysol giveaway and the Carmex giveaway was Tracy at Life With Landon. Clearly, the random number generator really liked her this week.

--I truly appreciate all the prayers and kind words y'all have sent my way. I really, truly appreciate and am thankful for each and every one of you.
As for my marriage, we are attending marriage counseling with a strong Christian marriage and family therapist, attending a Sunday school class specifically for married couples, and praying to God to transform both of us, and our marriage, into what He wants it to be.

--I've been re-reading The Search For Significance: Seeing Your True Worth Through God's Eyes, and am reminded how amazing of a book it is.

I would highly recommend it to anyone and everyone. It's not a story, but rather a non-fiction and very biblically-based book that clearly deals with feelings of inadequacy, shame, and self-doubt and reassures you that you are significant and fully loved and accepted in God's eyes. Do yourself a favor and order a copy. For reals.

--I have been a serious Starbucks junkie lately. We're talking daily trips for my beloved iced coffees. 24 delicious ounces of iced coffee, half and half, and sugar-free vanilla goodness. YES please. (the half and half is what takes it from ehhhhh to AMAZING. Stop being scared of all the fat and give it a try!)

--It is currently 75 degress outsides and I am LOVING it. Normally, I'm a summertime girl through and through, but those unending days of 112 degrees were a killer. Bring on the fall!

I hope y'all are having a terrific Tuesday. Kiss your kiddos, hug your spouse a little harder, and give a stranger a random compliment today. It'll brighten your day, I promise.

linked to, which I highly recommend you go read!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Carmex Review and Giveaway

As a member of the Carmex Blog Squad, I was sent a gift pack with some of their new products to try out.  My mom was always a die-hard Carmex fan and I grew up using Carmex.  I was definitely intrigued about trying some of Carmex’s new products. I use chapstick and lip balm on a regular basis and am always looking forward to a new favorite. 

I recently received the following items in the mail: (1) Carmex Lime Twist click stick, (1) Carmex Vanilla click stick, (1) Summer Picnic blanket, and (1) Carmex Moisture Plus® clear satin gloss finish.

To being with, I have always preferred lip balm in stick form as opposed to a little container of it, so I like that the carmex sticks came in this form. Also, vanilla is one of my favorite scents/flavors, so that was an instant winner. The lime twist, though not something I would have chosen usually, was a fun summery scent. The click stick chapsticks went on very smoothly and felt very moisturizing. I'll be honest and admit that I'm not one who's too concerned about SPF, but it's a nice bonus that these have SPF 15. Lastly, these products aren't tested on animals, which is great. 

In addition to the click sticks, Carmex also sent the picnic blanket. It folds up compactly and and has a carrying handle, so it's very handy and convenient.

I would definitely recommend Carmex click sticks. They works great, they're very moisturizing, and you have a choice of flavors. Perfect for all your chapstick needs!

Luckily for you, Carmex is giving away a Carmex kit just like the one I received. One lucky reader of loving the little things will be selected to win two Carmex click sticks (vanilla and lime twist), one Carmex moisture plus, and one picnic blanket. 
To enter, just leave a comment on this post telling me about your number one must-have health and beauty product. But hurry! This giveaway closes TONIGHT! 

Giveaway closes Monday, September 5 at 9:00 pm CST.
Winner will be selected via, announced on the blog, and notified by email on Tuesday, September 6. Good luck!

In the interest of full disclosure, I was provided with the previously mentioned products from Carmex for being a part of their Blog Squad.. I received no compensation for my review, and my thoughts are entirely my own. 


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