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Get the Parenting the Wholehearted Child eBook for just $0.99!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

Amazon just dropped the price on the Parenting the Wholehearted Child eBook down to $0.99! This was one of my Top 10 Favorite Reads from 2015 and is one of my Top 7 Favorite Books for Moms.

I typically steer clear of parenting books because I just don’t feel like there’s a method or 1-2-3 plan for raising kids. Every child and every family is different and there are no one-size-fits-all plans. So I almost didn’t read this book, but I’m SO glad that I did! It really challenged my heart and approach in loving and nurturing relationships with my kids.


Psst! Did you know you don’t need a Kindle device in order to read these free eBooks? Just download the free Kindle Reading App that allows you to read your eBooks on just about any device (including your computer)!

Thanks, Modern Mrs. Darcy!

Digital download of a Guide to Modern Calligraphy for just $6.99!

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclosure policy here.

Jane has a digital download of this Guide to Modern Calligraphy for just $6.99 right now!

This is regularly priced at $28, and it includes:

  • 10 Instructional Pages
  • 2 Alphabet Guides
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Practice Templates + More!

If someone you know has an interest in calligraphy or hand-lettering, this might be a really unique gift idea!

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

NOTE: The price of these ebooks is currently $0.00, but that could change at any time. Be sure to verify before checking out that it is still free.

Unless otherwise noted, these ebooks are specifically for Kindles, but you can go here to download a free application that enables you to read Kindle ebooks on your PC.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Thanksgiving Recipes.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Taking Back Your Holidays.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Make Ahead Meals: Quick and Healthy Dinner and Lunch Recipes.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Home to Pebble Creek.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Mason Jar Breakfasts.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Spice Box.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Homemade Shampoos.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Count Your Blessings.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of A Rose Blooms Twice.

Free eBooks: Thanksgiving Recipes, Taking Back Your Holidays, Make Ahead Meals, plus more!

Download a free copy of Voyage with the Vikings.


Psst! Did you know you don’t need a Kindle device in order to read these free eBooks? Just download the free Kindle Reading App that allows you to read your eBooks on just about any device (including your computer)!

5 Free Resources You Might Be Overlooking at the Library

Guest post by Sarah Anne of Sarah Anne Carter:

I love to read. I love the library. If I had to buy every book I wanted to read, I would very quickly go broke!

My children are now voracious readers, too, and we visit our local library at least twice a month. While we’re most often there for books, we’ve discovered several other resources the library offers that are often overlooked, but are still free!

1. Magazines

Libraries often have a section of magazines you can read while you’re at the library. With Overdrive, a library app that you log on to with your library card, you can also read magazines in the comfort of your own home.

The app can be accessed on smartphones, tablets and computers through a Web site. Magazines such as Mental Floss, Glamour, Homespun and Discover are available through Overdrive. To read them, you will have to download Barnes & Noble’s free Nook app, but that can also be downloaded to smartphones, tablets and computers.

2. Movies

Our library has a large selection of DVDs that you can check out for a week. They also recently started a Quick-Pick selection of recently-released DVDs that you can check out for two days and you can put them on hold.

Overdrive also has streaming videos you can check out for five days. There are movies, TV shows, exercise videos, documentaries and children’s videos.

3. Meeting space

Almost every library offers a meeting space and there are two ways you can use it – go to events held there or hold your own events.

Libraries host events from book club and writing groups to essential oil classes and history talks – and a bit of everything in between. If you have a special interest, expertise or skill, think about using the library’s meeting space to host a class. You’ll be able to advertise the event to everyone who visits the library and possibly reach people you normally wouldn’t reach.

Keeping tabs of events at the library is a good idea, too. You can learn a lot by going to events and classes at the library. We recently learned about African penguins where my children got to touch one and heard a talk from a Native-American re-enactor who discussed Native American history in our local region.

4. Audiobooks

Books on CD are about the only way we survive long road trips as a family. I can check out several children or young adult books. I can also use Overdrive to download audiobooks to my and my husband’s smartphones so we can listen to books, too.

If your child has a device that has apps, you can download audiobooks through Overdrive to that device. This can be helpful if you have children in various reading stages.

5. Expertise

The people who work at the library are usually wonderful, very knowledgeable people. When one of my daughters was stuck reading a series over and over again, I talked to our children’s librarian for suggestions of other books that might entice my child. Her advice worked wonders – she knew a book that was the series’ author’s favorite as a child and my daughter read that one next.

Librarians know about new books coming out and can make recommendations based on what you like. They also know who many of the experts are in the community as they often come through for events or sponsor library events. When in doubt about a topic, ask a librarian!

What else do you use the library for besides checking out books? Share your library tips here!

Sarah Anne Carter often won summer reading programs at her library as a child. She is working on her first novel, but when she is not writing, she is reading. Find book reviews and a free adult summer reading Bingo printable on her blog, Sarah Anne Carter.

photo source

A Peek Into My Life This Past Week (+ win a stack of books from me!)

Welcome to my weekly Sunday post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.

I told you last week that I had BIG plans for this week — to not only commit to getting up at 4:30 a.m. every morning, but also to bring back my much-requested morning Periscope show.

I’m so thrilled because not only did I get up around 4:30 to 4:45 a.m. every day this past week, I stuck with my commitment to be on Periscope every morning, too.

AND, best of all, I got so much done this week and had a lot of breathing room in my life for the most important things — like relationships!

It was so successful, that I’ve decided to continue it for at least this next week, as well. No promises after that… I’m just taking this one week at a time! 🙂

This week, I’m also going to work on doing a better job of actually getting in bed before 9 p.m. — something that I struggled with this past week, mostly just because that’s at least an hour earlier than I usually get to bed! I know it’s very doable with our current season of life… I just have to, you know, DO IT. 😉

What I’m Reading

I haven’t been doing as much reading recently, but this week, I did a better job of at least getting in a little reading time every day. Hopefully next week, I’ll be able to report that I actually finished some books.

Right now, I’m reading: Thou Givest, They Gather (an old Christian reprint), A Gospel Primer (a spiritually encouraging book), 10% Happier (a story-driven book), and The Big Leap (a book on life improvement).

{See my Reading Goals for 2017. Also, see the 36 books I’ve read so far in 2017 here.}

{Psst! In case you noticed that my rug is off-centered in this photo, read this.}

What I’m Watching

We’re continuing to really enjoy Designated Survivor and are also watching the latest season of Amazing Race together as a family.

What I’m Listening To

This week, I listened to episodes of podcasts from Sorta Awesome and Cultivating the Lovely. I also watched/listened to the entire What’s 4 Dinner Challenge that is going to be part of the upcoming Homemaking Bundle (more details on the bundle later this week).

What I’m Loving

I’m absolutely loving the new raglan shirts we launched with Cents of Style this week. And if you saw me this week, you probably saw me wearing one! 🙂

As you well know, I’m LOVING the Slow Cooker Menu Plan from Eat at Home and am excited to continue sharing the recipes I’m making on this menu plan every morning on Facebook Live at 9 a.m. CT.

One Thing I Accomplished This Week

I’m a Marie Kondo failure when it comes to the whole folding clothes thing. I read the book, I looked at blog posts on it, I watched the videos… and I really did try. But my drawers were just in constant disarray.

I got tired of digging through clothes, having to spend extra time looking for what I needed, and feeling discouraged every time I opened up my drawers.

So I decided it was high time I try something different… because clearly my current non-system wasn’t cutting it.

I pulled everything out of my dresser, hung up almost everything (including nicer tees and jeans), and bought organizers for the remaining items in my drawers (workout clothes, leggings, pjs, socks, etc.).

It makes me SO happy to open up each of my dresser drawers and see a neat and tidy system and space in each drawer!

I kind of just want to keep opening each drawer up to look at it and admire it! (Okay, I might be weird! ;))

I didn’t stress over getting them folded all perfectly since I’m just going to be pulling it out and wearing it, and it’s not Marie Kondo approved, but it works for me!!

What I’m Celebrating

Moms, it’s sometimes easy to forget what our kids are capable of. I’ve been working on trying to divvy up the household responsibilities even more instead of just doing things myself because it’s “quicker and easier.”

It may be quicker and easier in the short-term, but in the long run, it means that we are missing opportunities to let our kids learn new things, take more ownership, find the fulfillment that comes from accomplishing a task successfully… and it means we end up doing a lot more work than we need to be doing!

Case in point: I was getting ready to make some bread for dinner a few days ago when I realized that Kaitlynn could probably learn how to make bread and I had time to teach her.

She was so excited about making it, but then surprised me by asking if she could use a recipe she had found in her homemade gifts book.

It was her first time to make bread and she made the entire recipe herself with almost zero help from me. The end result was this amazing sourdough-like bread that wowed us all at dinner!! And the loaf lasted all of about 15 minutes!

She made it again the next day, too. I think I could get used to this. 😉

A Word of Encouragement for Moms, Especially

“I’m trying to get up by 7:30 am and had been feeling good about that. I just read your post about getting up at 4:30 am and now I feel pathetic!”

Someone left the above comment on one of my posts about getting up early and I wanted to reach through the screen and hug that woman and celebrate the fact that she’s getting up at 7:30 am.

You guys. Please remember that my kids are 12, 9, and 7. They are sleeping through the night. They can bathe and dress themselves. They can get their own breakfasts. They can even buckle themselves in the car! (Oh how I remember the days of 3 kids in car seats who all needed my help getting in and out of the car!!)

Also, please remember that my husband gets up early and has a very flexible schedule, so this works for his schedule, too.

Please remember that I’m a morning person.

Please remember that this 4:30 am thing is an experiment.

Please remember that what works for me won’t work for you. And what works for me in one season won’t work for me in another season.

Please celebrate where you are, who you are, the season of life you’re in, and the schedule you have. Please don’t feel discouraged by me and the crazy things I do over here sometimes.

Please do you and what works for you. And know that even if you get up at 11:30 am every morning, if that works for you and your family, there is no shame or guilt there.

You’re doing a great job. Keep it up!

A Photo I Had to Share

This photo moves me at a deep level. You see, this boy struggled for three years to learn how to read.

Both of his sisters started reading pretty easily at 4. He just couldn’t get it in preschool like they did. He couldn’t get it in kindergarten. He couldn’t get it in first grade.

We tried one curriculum. Then another. Then another.

Nothing worked.

He was frustrated because there was so much that he couldn’t do by himself without being able to read. He wanted to learn to read so badly and it just wasn’t clicking.

When he started going to school in the fall, we had him take first grade again — because we knew he really needed to be reading independently to move on to second grade.

We found out later that he pulled his teachers aside and told them that he couldn’t read and he didn’t really want the other kids to know so could they help him.

They were so amazing to quietly work with him and help him — without the other kids knowing — and then to do class reading exercises that were specifically designed to help Silas. They said within just a few weeks, he was able to be a part of the class reading groups — which made him so proud!

He has since really taken off with reading and spelling and, a few weeks ago, when we had parent-teacher conferences, his teachers told us he is reading and writing at first grade level!!!

I snuck this picture of him one morning this past week when he wasn’t looking. It’s of him reading the Bible verses for our morning breakfast/Bible reading.

He loves, loves, loves to look up the verses and read them all by himself. And my mama heart is just so proud of him for how far he’s come this year. But mostly, it makes me heart thrilled that he loves reading God’s Word!

In Case You Missed It

Want to win this stack of books?

I thought it would be fun for me to do a giveaway here every once in awhile on Sundays — giving away some of our our products, items I’ve been sent two of, books I’ve already read and want to pass on, or other items I have that we no longer need and would like to pass onto a great home!

To win this stack this week, leave a comment letting us know what you are currently reading or what is your favorite book that you’ve read recently.

I’ll choose one winner from all of the comments and will email that winner personally + post the winner next week on my Peek Into My Life This Week Post.

A Peek Into My Life This Past Week (+ win a stack of books from me!)

Welcome to my weekly Sunday post where we take a break from money-related posts and I share about what I’m loving right now and give you a little peek into our life from the past week.

It was such a great whirlwind trip to Kansas last weekend! Silas and I flew there Saturday evening and flew back home on Monday morning.

But in that short timeframe, I got to cuddle with my new nephew (look at those shoes!!), watch my youngest brother play trumpet in his final Youth Symphony concert, help my family serve lunch after church to about 200 people (they are in charge of a Fellowship Lunch at church once a month), enjoy a FREE Chipotle dinner with almost all of my extended family (my brother had made HOT status on the Chiptopia game and earned a Free Chipotle catered meal for 20!!), have some long conversations with dear people I’ve not seen in a long time, and spend a lot of quality time with Silas on the flights there and back.

What I’m Celebrating

The kids had their 3rd quarter Presentation Day at school this past week — which means that they all had to memorize a poem chosen by their teachers, create a visual representation of the poem, and then recite the poem using hand motions and voice inflections in front of the entire school — students, teachers, and parents.

They were all quite nervous and I was kind of nervous for them! 🙂 I sat on the front row with all of the words to their poems on my phone, just in case someone needed some prompting. Okay, I admit, it may have also been for my own nerves, too. 🙂

They all went up and did such a great job and we all breathed a big sigh of relief when it was over!

Saturday, Kathrynne competed in the Destination Imagination Middle TN Regional Championships. Her team had to design and build a structure that could hold as much weight as possible, as well as perform a skit about two nations working together to solve a problem. They had a number of different parameters they had to work within such as budget, materials they could use, and everything had to be done by the kids — no parental involvement or input was allowed.

Kathrynne’s responsibility was to go in front of the judges and add as much weight to the structure as possible without it breaking. She ended up being able to add on 278 pounds and was cool as cucumber while all eyes were on her, the panel of judges was watching, and you could have heard a pin drop.

Just a year ago, Kathrynne was scared to death of social situations with kids her age, being on a stage of any sort, and doing any public speaking. It’s amazing how far she’s come in just a few short months for her to do both Presentation Day and the DI competition back to back in a two-day period and to do an amazing job at both!

Their team qualified for the state championship which will be held in April and they are already talking about how they are going to improve their performance to hopefully get even higher scores!

What I’m Laughing About

So I decided to finally get my Instant Pot out of the box and try using it to make Hard Boiled Eggs. I decided to do a Facebook Live video of this attempt.

And that turned out to be quite the video… um, yeah. If you need a laugh, you can check out my Facebook Live video here.

What I’m Reading

I started listening to Lilac Girls on audio this week because I finally was next in line at the library for it. I almost stopped listening to it because there was some edge-y stuff in the first part and I was afraid it was going to get worse as progressed.

But I kept with it and I’m glad that I did because it’s a really compelling, tragic, and gripping story of the horrors of concentration camps. And I think that the audio book is very well done.

I’m only halfway through, but so far, I’d definitely recommend it — especially the audiobook version. (Do note that it it is very much PG-13 and I would only recommend listening to it with headphones in if you have kids at your house!)

I also finished It’s Not About Money, 30 Days to Calm Parenting, and Just Do Something. (See all 29 books I’ve read so far in 2017 here.)

What I’m Watching

We started watching Season 2 of Designated Survivor this week. I love it when we find a show that both Jesse and I love. Season 1 of this show was SO good and we have high hopes for Season 2.

What I’m Trying

We’re going through Stacy’s Home Management How To Course over on the Facebook Group I created (it’s been SO good to have accountability there! If you haven’t joined us yet, you are welcome to still jump on the bandwagon and sign up for Stacy’s course and join us over on Facebook.)

One of the things Stacy really encourages is to have different days of the week for different assigned chores.

I have to be honest: I fought against having assigned chores to days of the week. When I saw Stacy suggest that, I immediately thought, “That will never work for us!”

Our schedule is really varied, every day is different with different activities, work stuff, practices, games, school projects, etc.

BUT… a friend challenged me to just jump out and try it. So, the past few days, I’ve been mulling over how this might look for us.

Here’s what I came up with:

  • Monday: Laundry Day
  • Tuesday: Office Day
  • Wednesday: Baking Day
  • Thursday: Errand Day
  • Friday: Prep Day
  • Saturday: Cleaning Day
  • Sunday: Rest Day

I don’t know if this will work or not, but I’m committed to trying it out for 3 weeks to see what happens!

As we go through the lessons, I’m making up short lists of what I want to accomplish for each day and figure out when I plan to fit it into our schedule.

I’m excited to see how this works — or doesn’t work! — and what I learn from this experiment. I’ve heard SO many great things about this set-up so I’m genuinely anxious to try it out!

What I’m Pondering

She accidentally forgot her lunch one day this week. Instead of feeling frustration over the inconvenience of needing to make a lunch and bring it to school for the forgetful girl, I thought of all the times I’d forgotten things and others had extended grace to me.

And I made her lunch with love — choosing things I knew she especially likes. As I was finishing, I grabbed a little sticky note and wrote a quick love note.

She told me later, “I cried when I saw your note. And then I kept it on my lap and just kept staring at it all during math class.”

It was such a simple gesture. It only took 30 seconds. But it spoke volumes to my girl.

Her mama loves her — even when she forgets her lunch.

And I had to think: What if I had chosen frustration instead? Look what I would have missed out on! Look what she would have missed out on!

These seemingly little things, little opportunities, little choices… they aren’t always so little.

In Case You Missed It

My posts from this past week:

My YouTube video from this past week:

Want to win this stack of books?

I thought it would be fun for me to do a giveaway here every once in awhile on Sundays — giving away some of our our products, items I’ve been sent two of, books I’ve already read and want to pass on, or other items I have that we no longer need and would like to pass onto a great home!

Today’s stack includes an old copy of Thinner Leaner Stronger, two adult coloring books, a used copy of It’s My Pleasure (a business book I loved!), a Gratitude journals, an extra copy I received of Only Love Today (a book I hope to read really soon!), Lilac Girls, plus a book on marriage that I was sent.

To win this stack this week, leave a comment on this blog post telling me about what you are celebrating this week.

(If you are reading this via email or a feed reader, click over to MoneySavingMom.com and leave a comment on this blog post to enter to win!)

I’ll choose one winner from all of the comments and will email that winner personally + post the winner next week on my Peek Into My Life This Week Post.

Congratulations to Raquel who was the winner of the stack of books I gave away two weeks ago. Raquel, you should have received an email from me asking for your mailing address!