I'm not really great about printing photos and making photo albums. There's a saying in Spanish that goes "Casa de herrero, cuchillo de palo," which roughly translates into "In the blacksmith's house the knives are wooden." Basically, where something should be abundant (like printed photos in a photographer's house), they aren't.
But a few weeks ago, I decided I was going to stop saying "one day I'll make the album," and I actually did it. It seems like such a daunting task, right? And while it definitely took me a few hours to organize everything, it wasn't nearly as bad as I anticipated.
For me, digital organization is something I've struggled with for a while. I used to have pictures all over the place, but in the last few years I've started to organize myself much better. Cell phone photos still live on my phone and in the cloud, but they are pretty easy to organize there! Photos that come off my camera are generally a more tedious process, but I finally have a system in place and I have been making sure to organize all my photos for the last year. So last week, when I saw that Artifact Uprising was having a sale, I went ahead and took advantage. The quality of products from there is excellent, and I love how sleek and timeless their products look. The other thing I like is that layouts are simple. You don't have to include words, but you can if you want to. I didn't include writing in most of the pages, but I definitely felt like 2020 needed some explanation for the future!
I went ahead and made the hardcover photo book, and it came in this week. I'm really really glad I ended up doing it, and I'm going to try to work backwards in years so I can fill in some of those missing years. I'm also thinking of doing big vacations in separate albums (like our trip to Europe in 2019/2020).
So how did I get organized? Here's how!
I'm not going to say this was a quick or even really easy process, but it definitely wasn't the arduous thing I had built up in my head. My biggest tip is to enjoy the steps! And if you have any questions, definitely don't hesitate to ask!
*Links are affiliate links, which means I make a small commission off your purchase. You never pay more.
I would never claim to be totally eco-conscious or constantly aware of the environment, but there are a few small changes I've made around the house that make me feel better about what I am consuming and the impact I am making on our world. Here are 10 small things we do to make sure we are being more eco-friendly. If it seems like a lot, just try one thing at a time. By making a lot of small changes, over time you can make a huge impact. Plus, you are teaching your children and setting a good example for them as well.
1. Switch to a menstrual cup. Think about the waste that accumulates after years of using pads and tampons. A menstrual cup can really help cut down on that.
2. Reusable snack bags. We go through Ziplock bags like crazy, and this is one change I've been debating for a little bit, but I'm going to make it, this week.
3. Reusable makeup remover pads. I have been using a cloth to remove my makeup for a long time and I have found it to be useful, less abrasive than wipes, and again, much less wasteful than makeup remover wipes.
4. Reusable face pads. These are great for applying toner and anything you don't want to use your hands for. They come with a little satchel so you can throw them in the wash and not lose them.
5. Silicone dish sponges and brushes. I was skeptical about these, but they are great! I also feel like they don't harbor as much bacteria as a traditional dish sponge, so win-win!
6. Cleaning Cloths vs paper towels. I am guilty of relying on paper towels way too much. But a few years ago I started using these cloths for cleaning and not only do I feel less wasteful using them, but they also clean better and don't leave fibers behind!
7. Make your own cleaning spray. I recently made an all-purpose cleaning spray with some essential oils and some products I already had at home. I've already re-filled it four times and I spend pennies on the dollar each time I refill it! Plus, no throwing away bottles of cleaning products constantly.
8. Diffuse essential oils instead of burning candles. I love candles, but they produce more waste and they aren't really all that great for us to breathe in constantly.
9. Use real dishes, cups, and cutlery. I figure this is an easy one. I'd rather run my dishwasher once a day to cut down on the consumption of paper goods, and it's something that adds up over time. This also includes water bottles! Buy yourself a good refillable one and take it everywhere!
10. Use reusable straws. The kids use straws pretty often, and reusable straws really help to cut down on waste. I'm also not a fan of paper straws, because the kids always manage to rip them up, so reusable ones in plastic, metal, or silicone are helpful!
What are some things you do to be more conscious of the environment? Let me know in the comments!
This is a sponsored post. All opinions are my own.
I absolutely adore shopping at my neighborhood Publix, and if I can get rewarded for it, I enjoy it even more! I’ve talked about Publix’s Stocking Spree program before, and while it is a program that goes on all year, a couple times a year some of the featured products are on sale, making the savings even bigger. And when the savings include some of the staples in our house like coffee, oats, and macaroni and cheese, you know I am going to be stocking up on that! Sometimes I’ll even sneak in something like OREO Cookies - although those don’t last very long in our house!
With Publix, you can earn rewards for buying the things you need (or want) anyway. So I headed to Publix and picked up some of the products that I know I can be rewarded for purchasing!
Publix Stocking Spree is a program where you can be rewarded JUST for buying the products we already know and love. All year long, you can receive a $10 Publix gift card every time* you purchase $50 of participating Stocking Spree products (*Up to 12 gift cards per household per year). Plus you can save even more at Publix with special offers on select Stocking Spree 365 products during the sale week from 4/8-4/14 (Some markets 4/7 – 4/13).
Taking part in the program is easy - the list of products is available on www.stockingspree.com, so you can check out the participating products before you head to Publix. Make your list, purchase $50 worth of participating products. When you get home, take a photo of your receipt, log into the site and upload the photo of your receipt - I did it in under 5 minutes! Once your receipt is reviewed, you will be able to claim your $10 Publix gift card. You can opt for a physical gift card, which will be mailed to you, or a digital gift card that will be applied to your Publix Digital Wallet.
See StockingSpree.com for a full list of participating products and to upload your receipts. Don’t miss out on this awesome chance to be rewarded for your Publix purchases!
I just finished up my shopping for the kids' Easter baskets today, and I thought I'd share some of the things I'm including and a couple of others that I thought might be a cute fit for others' baskets. Check them out below, and for more ideas, check out my Amazon list!
To keep the real reason for Easter at the forefront always, I like to include something that will help the kids grow in their faith. These Mass parts cards help kids understand the order of the mass and anticipate what is coming next. With colorful drawings and color-coded for the parts of the mass, I have a feeling they will really help keep the kids engaged during mass.
A craft like this from Sew Sweet Crafts for older kids or some kind of activity like a sensory bin like these from Rooted Sensory for younger children.
Swimsuits are always included in our kids' Easter baskets because they typically are in need of new ones by the time Easter rolls around! I love these from Lotus & Sun for younger kids.
Something soft and cuddly like these personalized bunnies from GT Stitchery.
What is something you like to include in your kids' Easter baskets? Let me know below!
For more ideas, check out my Amazon List!
For so many of us, our phones are a huge extension of our daily lives. We communicate, we take photos, it wakes us up, we work from them. The list goes on! I love finding new apps that help make tasks easier, and here are 5 that I've discovered recently that are great!
1. Alpaca - Tired of sorting through 24,000 photos on your camera roll like me? Alpaca groups together like photos (ex: when you take 15 photos of the kids to make sure you get one good one) so you can go through them quickly and select which ones you want to keep. I've been trying to use it at the end of each day to cut down on the excess photos on my phone.
2. Hallow - A Catholic meditation app that offers guided meditation sessions, prayers, and daily readings. If you've been looking for a way to incorporate some of these things into your day more easily, check this app out. There is a subscription if you want to access everything, but there are also many prayers you can access for free.
3. Splitwise - If you take trips with friends or family and want to make sure you split expenses, this is a really good one. We used this with our friends on our recent trip to Lake Oconee and it was so easy to keep track of the expenses.
4. Instagram Threads - This is for my social media peeps. I often get messages on Instagram asking me to caption my stories because people are watching them while baby is sleeping or they don't want to disturb someone around them. Instagram Threads allows me to caption my stories and use my favorite Instagram filters at the same time.
5. Libby - I have talked about Libby before! I use this to borrow digital copies of books from my local library, which saves me a TON of money. You can place books on hold, and once you borrow them, they stay on your device for 21 days. If Libby doesn't work with your library, you can try Overdrive.
Let me know if you try any of these and how you like them! And if you have any other super cool app suggestions, let me know - I'd love to try them out!
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