First vacation in 16 years – Spring break at Margaritaville Lake Resort

Last day in paradise!

Y’all! We went on vacation as a family and it was the first time in 16 years. Talk about a long time coming. It was definitely long overdue! 

Our first day (Landshark Bar & Grill)

It was a nice trip that was 4 days and 3 nights in Osage Beach at the Margaritaville Lake Resort Lake of the Ozarks. The drive which is a little under 3 hours was beautiful on the day that we left and the weather was equally as beautiful while we were there. There was one day that got pretty chilly and we stayed in the room playing UNO, watching TV, and enjoying the fact that we didn’t have anywhere to be. The other days we went swimming, played pool, arcade games, ate good, and relaxed a lot. 

Getting tips on how to play pool (Frank & Lola’s Pizzeria)
He enjoyed the arcade the most! (Fin City Arcade)

Since this trip was intended for us to relax we didn’t partake in all of the activities but there isn’t a shortage of things to do. They have bowling, mini-golf, and an indoor water park. There is also an option for a boat cruise, horseback riding, and boat rentals but those are still closed for the season.

Look at that smile! (lobby)

We’ve even talked about going back this summer when everything is open with our older children and our grandchildren because it’s so family friendly. We had a wonderful time! It was exactly what we wanted and needed.

Where are you headed on vacation this year and if you’ve already been on vacation where did you go?

Quick Tip Wednesday: Family Calendar

I’ve used a family calendar off and on over the years. I recently added it back into our routine after not using it for about a year. I needed something that would help my family know important information without relying on me to tell them. In the past I used a paper calendar that I hung on the wall in the kitchen. This time around I decided on a erasable black magnetic monthly fridge calendar that I purchased from Arteza. It being erasable allows me the ease to change things without having to mark through them like I did on a paper calendar. I’m using it in pretty much the same way as in the past. It has holidays, birthdays, and any other events that I need everyone to know about. This time around I have Marc crossing off the days since he has a hard time remembering what day it is (don’t we all? LOL!). It also came with a small to do list that I am using for Marc’s chores and tasks for the day. I love it! I can ask him to check the fridge and he can go down the list of tasks and mark them off without me having to run through the list verbally and possibly forgetting something. It’e been a lifesaver!

Quick Tip Wednesday: Family List

Select a place that your family can use to let you know what they are about to or have completely run out of (body wash, deodorant, pencils, edge control, etc). It doesn’t have to be an entire family command center, it can be a simple magnetic list pad from the grocery store or dollar tree that you attach a pen/pencil to and stick to the refrigerator. Make it easy to find and simple to use. Grab it before you make your grocery list and add these items to your list.

3 Tips to start holiday planning

Hello loves! It’s the last two days of October, which mean the holiday season is quickly approaching. I’ve already started planning for the holidays, but thought I would share a couple of things that have helped me so far. 

My first tip is to create a plan. This can be done digital or on paper. I prefer paper, and currently use the Happy Planner by MAMBI. One of the things I like most about this system are the moveable discs. Meaning I can put things in my planner and take things out as needed. This is helpful when I need to add a menu, grocery list, interesting articles from a magazine or something on the internet, etc. And when the holiday season is over I can move it all out of my planner (and archive it for next year) so it’s not taking up room. If you prefer a digital calendar, you can set tasks in your calendar with reminders for what needs to be done by a specific date. For example, create guest list for Thanksgiving due 10/01/17, create menu for Thanksgiving 10/08/17, etc.

My second tip is to ask for help. I know if you’re like me then you hate asking for help, because you think you can do it faster than the time it takes to explain it to someone who may or may not get it right. BUT asking for help when planning an event is not only smart, it will save you time in the long run. The more tasks you can delegate to someone else (within reason of course), the more time you will have to spend enjoying family and friends. More Mary and less Martha is my goal this holiday season. 

My last tip is to go with the flow. Don’t stress out over every little thing. Again, if you’re like me then I know how hard this can be. I like for things to be perfect, but perfectionism is a myth that has stolen joy from some of the most important moments in my life. Thanks to my husband I’m learning to worry and stress less about things that I have no control over (and the ones that I do). He’s amazing like that! So, don’t worry about every detail to the point that your so stressed out that your yelling at your kids because they (insert typical kiddo behavior here), or your sweating in the kitchen and side eyeing your husband as he walks through and snags a piece of turkey off the platter you just neatly prepared, instead stop and go see what everyone is laughing about in the family room. You’ll thank yourself later. 

Okay, those are the three that I have so far. I’m sure I’ll gather more as the season goes on. Tell me, what are some of your tips for preparing for the holidays?