When You Show Up With Bad Breath, Yoga Pants, and No Makeup


I started out this week feeling quite overwhelmed. There were so many things that needed to be accomplished before we went on our week-long family trip on Wednesday.

As I scanned my calendar and to-do’s, I saw meetings scheduled, homeschool lessons to do, blog and business projects to finish, many loose ends to tie up… not to mention the laundry that needed to be done, and figuring out and packing up outfits for the kids and me for the trip.

All I could see were hours and hours and hours of work and just a few days to accomplish it all. I reminded myself of the verse I’ve been camping out on the past many months: “Give us this day our daily bread.”

This verse has calmed my heart many a time as I meditate on the fact that God has promised to give me exactly what I need for each day. He won’t give me what I need for 3 months from now or even 3 days from now, but He will be faithful to give me exactly what I need when I need it.

So I took a deep breath and asked God for the grace for each day — and for Him to multiply my time and give me a lot of productivity and energy. And would you believe it? When Wednesday morning rolled around, the laundry was done, the house was picked up, and the suitcases were packed. I’m not even sure how that happened, but it did!

And what was really impressive is that we were planning to leave around 4 p.m., but instead we got around early, and left at 10 a.m.

For. real.

Yes, HOLD THE PHONE. The Paine family left on vacation SIX HOURS EARLY!!! Those of you who know us well know what an amazing feat this fact is. I’m still not sure I believe it.

{And all of you annoyingly-always-so-very-early people are reading the previous paragraph and wondering what the big deal is. Because you consider yourself “so behind” if you’re not all packed up at least 24 hours before you leave on vacation instead of starting to think about packing an hour before you’re supposed to leave… not saying i have personal experience with that or anything. Ahem.

You probably also have all your Christmas presents all handmade for the next two years, have them wrapped in homemade wrapping paper, and probably have them sorted in categorized bins, and alphabetized on a spreadsheet. Yeah. If that describes you, I think you’re amazing, but I’m not sure we can be friends. ;)}

So, basically the whole drive to North Carolina, I was feeling so pumped because we are so. on. the. ball. We kept commenting how good it felt to be so organized and early and ahead of schedule.

I had visions of how we’d get to the hotel early, we’d go to bed early, and we’d get up the next day and get ourselves looking presentable before we drove over to the conference where the SheSpeaks conference was being held.

All was going along perfectly. Well, okay, except for mom getting a wee bit frustrated at the noise level in the car and a few issues with whining children.

{Truth: I had to ask for forgiveness from one of my children for snapping at them… before we even left the driveway. Yep, totally Best Mom Ever moment.}

We finally made it to our hotel around 8:15 p.m. and were looking forward to getting to our hotel room and getting to bed after a long day of traveling. But when Jesse went to check-in, he discovered that there was some mix-up with the hotel and they had booked our rooms in August — not July.

All of their rooms were already booked for that night, so they checked multiple other hotels in the area and finally found one that had one more room available. Jesse snatched that one right up.

When Jesse got back out to the car and broke the news to me about the hotel, I suggested that maybe he should call the hotel to double check that they had our reservation and a room available. Just to be sure, you know.

Jesse called this other hotel and told them our name and that a sister hotel should have just put a reservation on file for us. Well would you believe it? They told him, “I’m so sorry. We just booked our last room.”


At this point, we were just hoping to get a hotel room room somewhere. We talked about our options and decided to call the hotel that the SheSpeaks conference was going to be at. We’d been told they had been sold out earlier, but they had a few cancellations and were able to get us in.

By now, it’s past 9 p.m. and I’m just grateful that we have a hotel room somewhere.

But then it hits me: I was so focused on getting out the door early that I never took a shower, still had on the yoga pants and t-shirt I’d worn to bed, never had fixed my hair or put on makeup, and hadn’t brushed my teeth in hours. My kids were all disheveled from hours of being in the car, too.

I take this all in and realize that all of us are going to troop into the hotel — where hundreds of women are already gathered for the SheSpeaks conference — completely disheveled, unshowered, and me still in my PJ’s.

But then I thought: I bet we can sneak in really quickly and no one will see us or notice us.

Of course, that’s not what ended up happening. :)

When we pulled up to the hotel, my good friend, Ruth, was pulling up at the very same time. We’d been counting the days until we got to see each other, so I was so thrilled to see her that I forgot completely about my messy, yoga-panted, no-makeup appearance and just jumped out of the car, squealed, and ran to her.

We hugged and laughed and acted like giddy little girls. And I couldn’t care less.

After checking into our hotel room, taking a quick shower, and getting a little makeup on, I spent the next hour and a half hanging out with Ruth and Michele — which was an unexpected gift that wouldn’t have happened had we not left as early as we did or had the hotel mix-up.

Most of all, I felt so grateful to have friends like Ruth. Not only is she a brilliant blogger and online entrepreneur, but she’s an amazing friend. She loves me for exactly who I am while also encouraging me to be the best version of myself I can be.

That, folks, is a very rare gift. And I don’t take it for granted.

I’m so very grateful to have friends who look past the messy imperfections in my life and who love me for exactly who I am — even when I show up in my PJ’s. :)

P.S. Want to hear the story of how Ruth and I met? Check out her blog post from this week here.

True FriendsI’ll do you a favor and show you a picture of me when I was showered and out of my yoga pants! ;) I was so blessed to get to hang out with Ruth and meet the amazing Edie for the first time this weekend. Spending time with these two was so refreshing and encouraging. Not to mention they are both hilarious… I think I’m sore from all the laughing we did, but it was so very worth it! :)

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Tanga Deal: 6-Foot Chalkboard or Whiteboard Decal for just $9.99 shipped

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Such a fun deal! Get a 6-Foot Chalkboard or Whiteboard Decal for just $9.99 shipped!

Turn any ordinary wall into a fun writing surface with this easy peel-n-stick decal. Perfect for kids’ coloring surfaces, grocery lists, calendars, weekly dinner menus and much more, the 1.5ft x 6.5ft decal can be cut into any shape and size. The decal sticks to any wall and peels off without any residue.

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Skip the scrubbing and give your family a wall to color on without the mess!

(Note: The link in this post is my referral link. Read my disclosure policy here.)

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Rite Aid: Deals for the week of July 27-August 2, 2014

Here are the best Rite Aid deals this week, with thanks to Shannon for her help in compiling them. If you are new to shopping at Rite Aid or have questions about their coupon policy, click here.

Dove Advanced Hair Series – $3.50
Buy $15.00 and Get $5 UPR
Use $1/1 printable
Or use $1.50/1 printable
$2 after coupon and UPR

Crest ProHealth Rinses – $3.99
Get $3.00 UPR
Use $1/1 printable
Free after coupon and UPR

Gillette Clinical Deodorant – $7.99
Get $2 UPR
Use $4/2 coupon from the 7/6 P&G insert
$3.99 each after coupon and UPR

Clear Scalp & Hair Product – $5
Get $3.00 UPR when you buy 2
Use 2 $1.50/1 printable
$2 each after coupons and UPR

Bic Disposable Razor – $5.99
Get $2.00 UPR
Use $3/1 coupon from the 7/27 SmartSource insert
$0.99 after coupon and UPR

See the full list of deals at Rite Aid this week here.


Do you have your shopping trip planned or did you come up with a great deal scenario/idea? Just post about it on your blog and leave your link below. To make it easy for everyone to navigate quickly through the links, your link must link directly to your Rite Aid deals post. Links going to the homepage of your blog or any other part of your blog besides the direct link to your Rite Aid deals post will be deleted.

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4 Tips to Stop Eating Out – Even if You Hate to Cook

4 tips to stop eating out

Guest post from Alexa of Single Moms Income

It pains to me admit this, but June was the first time I haven’t eaten out for an entire month in years.

You see, over the past year I had developed a really bad habit: I started eating out all the time. To be honest, I was going through a drive thru about five times a week.

Something had to change.

In May of this year, I started cutting way back on our eating out; and in June, I stopped completely — cold turkey. I can proudly say that we didn’t eat at a restaurant one. single. time!

And it felt good.

I know there are many others out there, like me, who may be embarrassed to admit they have this same problem. So I want to offer you a solution. Here are a few suggestions to help you stop eating out, even if you hate to cook:

1.Get a Dishwasher

I’ve never had a dishwasher. My parents have never had a dishwasher.

After meals were cooked and the mess was made it was then time to roll up my sleeves and hand wash the dishes the old fashioned way. And between working and picking up after two young kids, cleaning up a big kitchen mess was the last thing I wanted to do.

That changed this year when I finally had access to a dishwasher. I cannot even begin to explain what a huge help this has been to me.

I discovered that I really didn’t hate cooking. I hated cleaning up the mess. The dishwasher I have is pretty old and could probably be found on Craigslist for $50 or less. But it gets the job done!

2. Stock Up at the Grocery Store

This might seem a little ironic but I’m actually pretty cheap. Yes, I would go through the drive thru five times a week but when it came to grocery shopping I wanted to spend as little money as possible.

I would buy the bare minimum.

At the beginning of June I decided I’d have to change my ways. Instead of buying the bare minimums I started stocking up on the things that I needed. This included buying several bags of chicken breasts when Kroger recently had a sale and also stocking up on flour, sugar, and other staples.

I also have a garden, so we’ve been using the produce from that for side dishes.

3. Keep Dinners Simple

Simple dinners work for me. I’m also incredibly lucky that my girls LOVE vegetables.

A dinner for us would be some type of meat (chicken several times per week) either cooked on the grill, crockpot, or baked and cut up vegetables on the side.

We’ve also made several batches of the best zucchini bread ever and froze a few loaves. I’ll often thaw some out and add it as a side.

4. Have Crockpot Dinners Handy

After seeing the 40 crockpot meals in 4 hours post I decided I’d do something similar. Instead of cooking 40 meals though, I keep about five in my freezer.

A family friend recently gave me a ton of roast they had from one of their cows and I’ve put several small roasts into freezer bags along with other ingredients.

Now on those busy days when I know I’m not going to cook I can just empty my freezer bag meals into the crockpot and come home to a nice, hot meal.

And the cleanup is a breeze.

My month-long experiment has taught me several things — one of the most important is that home cooked meals are so much better than anything you can get from a dollar menu.

I feel like I’ve turned a new leaf. Not only am I feeding me and my children healthier, more nutritious food, but I’m also saving hundreds of dollars a month!

Alexa is a work-from-home-mom who loves online business. When she’s not playing with her kids you can find her glued to her computer. She chronicles her journey as a single mother trying to make it big at Single Moms Income.

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