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4th of July Ideas

Tomorrow we will be celebrating our independence as Americans and celebrating the bravery that led to our freedom.

If you are last minute like me, you are still preparing and decorating for the 4th of July.

I have some quick and easy ideas to help you get ready for the patriotic holiday.

All these ideas are so simple, I am not a perfectionist so everything I do is very minimalist. I hope you enjoy!

Patriotic wreath

I love mesh wreaths, they are literally so easy to make and everything comes from the dollar tree.

USA Blocks

I found these super cute stars at the dollar tree and painted them with letters on them to form the USA.

Flag Cupcakes

I love how this cupcake flag turned out! I just baked my favorite cupcakes, formed my flag and decorated them with buttercream to look like a flag.

Festive Cheesecakes

Who doesn’t love cheesecakes! These are so quick and easy and add festivity to your holiday table. Just mix up the no bake cheesecake, put them in cute cupcake liners and top with cherries and blueberries.

Red White and Blue Tier Tray Decor

Want to add some red white and blue to any table? I decided to decorate my tiered tray. I put some 4th of July Garland around the tray and added little decor items like jars filled with blue candy and a red mug with patriotic straws.

Red White and Blue Strawberries

These strawberries are the cutest and so simple. Just dip them in whipped cream, leaving the tops red. Then dip the bottom in blue sprinkles or you can add blue coloring to sugar. Super quick and festive!

4th of July Table Decor

These are super cute to add to your 4th of July tablescape. The dollar tree has so many vases or jars to choose from. You just add red white and blue sand or rocks, tie some ribbon around the vase and add a flag.

Charcuterie Board

I am still getting the hang of the charcuterie boards, but I think my 4th of July board turned out pretty cute.

I hope you all have a safe and fun 4th of July!

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Wheelchair Accessible Summer Activities

Summer time is here and kids are out of school. Finding activites that our kids in wheelchairs can participate can be frustrating.

Until the whole World decides to be wheelchair accessible, we are limited to what we can do with Ciara but that doesn’t mean we don’t have our favorite summer time activites.

Here are some great activity ideas that are wheelchair accessible, that we enjoy doing during the summer time.

Morgan’s Wonderland

Morgan’s Wonderland is a accessible theme park, designed for special needs people in San Antonio Texas.

They have amusement rides and a water park.

We love Morgan’s Wonderland! It’s definitely a summer must have activity.

Skating

Here in Waco we have a skating rink that allows kids in wheelchairs to use the skating rink in their chair.

Ciara loves zooming around the rink in her power chair.

Bowling

Bowling is always a fun activity. They have bowling lanes with a ramp. I like to call ahead to make sure that the lane with the wheelchair ramp is available.

They also have bowling ramps for people who cannot throw the ball.

We always have a blast at the bowling alley.

Zoo

The zoo can be a little too hot during the summer time in Texas, but it’s always an option.

Build a Bear

Ciara has so much fun when she visits Build A Bear. Who doesn’t love building their own bear?? And it’s accessible and the workers are very accommodating for us.

Drive thru Safari

Drive thru safari’s are always fun. We use to drive to Glen Rose Texas to see their safari but now we have one closer that we are excited to try.

Movies

Okay so movie theaters can be frustrating because most theaters sit people in wheelchairs at the very front, and you break your neck looking up at the screen the whole time.

Last summer we visited the Hippodrome Theater in Waco and absolutely loved it!

They have a wheelchair lift that lifts them to their seat. You can also order food while you watch your movie. If you know the struggle of carrying movie snacks while pushing a wheelchair you understand how great that is!

I hope you have enjoyed these Summer Activities Ideas and have a great summer!

If you would like to follow a long with what Ciara is doing in life, follow Ciara’s Journey at https://www.facebook.com/Ciaras-Journey-101179611262607/.

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Mom Burnout

Have you ever felt tired of the mom life? Feeling as if the only thing you do in life is take care of everybody else?

Then you have the mom guilt, for feeling these feelings of mom burnout.

You are not alone!

For the past month I have felt the mama blues, and find it hard to just be happy.

I wake up everyday to the same messes in my house. Dirty clothes on the floor, dishes in the sink, laundry to wash and fold. Then I walk past that bathroom mirror with toothpaste splatters across it and think ” why should I even clean it, it will be dirty again tomorrow.” Then I spiral into a World of self pity.

I start to wonder if this is all my life will ever be, cleaning the toothpaste off of the mirror for the rest of my life?

How do you overcome these feelings of emptiness and self pity?

I have thought about this a lot here lately. I don’t want my kids to remember me as the crazy, depressed mom, that at time holds resentment towards them for having to be a mom 24/7.

I want them to remember me as a fun, happy mom!

So, what do I do about this?

I have complied a list of what I am going to try to get my life out of the gutter and stop the Mom Burnout.

Me Time

This is so important! We moms forget to have “me time“. We focus so much energy on doing everything for our families so that they can be happy, we forget about our happiness. Believe me there is no happy home without a happy wife/mom.

Whether you read a good book or you binge a new series on TV. Take the time everyday to do something you want to do.

Exercise

I hear so many good things about that thing called exercise, but I never just take the time to do it. Okay, it may be a little laziness on my part, but I think I am ready to start exercising this frustration away.

More Friend Time

It has occurred to me that I cannot remember the last time I had a Mom night out with friends or even a lunch date with a friend. I get so consumed in life, I forget I have friends. Remember your friends ladies, support each other and have more friend time.

Fun Hobbies

This kind of goes with “me time”, but I am going to find a hobby that I enjoy. I use to enjoy baking, but now I do it so much for my family that I don’t enjoy it as much.

Find a hobby that does not benefit anybody but YOU!

Be Selfish

It is okay for us moms to be selfish sometimes! We give so much of our time to our family, why not do more for yourself. Go shopping just for stuff for you, get your hair done, get that pedicure or massage you have been wanting.

If you don’t think of yourself sometime, you feel resentful to your family and that leads to that mom guilt.

Teach Your Family to Help More

This is a tough one for me. I have been guilty of not making my family do more for their selves . I would rather pick up the laundry myself and not argue about it, but my family DOES need to help out more.

In the end they make not like me as much, but they will show more respect for all the things that I do for them.

Enjoy Family Time

After I take some much needed mommy breaks and think about myself for once, I am hopeful I can get back to enjoying time with my family. We do all this for them anyways, might as well enjoy every minute with them.

I am looking forward to beating the “mom funk” and getting back to the mom and wife I want to be.

I hope some of these mom tips can help you if you feel the mom burnout coming on.

Don’t forget to give yourself a break and don’t feel bad about the mom burnout, it happens to the best of us!

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Yogi Bear Jellystone Park

Over Spring Break my son and I had the opportunity to visit the Yogi Bear Jellystone Park in Burleson, Texas.

At first, I thought this park may not be a good idea for a 14 year old boy, but we had so much fun!

There was literally so much to do, we stayed busy everyday.

We only stayed two days but I could have stayed and enjoyed the park for more of an extended stay.

It is a bit pricey, which is why we hadn’t tried it yet, but we found some great coupons for the cabin. We also met friends there and split the cost.

I would like to share our experiences and what we enjoyed at Jellystone.

Golf Cart Rental

Jellystone is huge so renting a golf cart is a must! Plus, it was so much fun zooming around the park. You can also find discount codes for the golf cart rentals, we were lucky to get 50% off our rental.

Paintball

My son absolutely loved playing paintball. He could have played over and over again but our schedule was full.

Crafts

In the bears den they have crafts you can participate in. They had a free craft that you can participate in, which were centered more for the younger kids, but we payed to paint these adorable ceramics.

Mining

How cute is this little mining station?? We purchased the bag of gems in the Gift Shop and then mined them. They have many different options as well, such as fossil bags or shark teeth bags.

Fishing at the Lake

My son enjoyed fishing, I enjoyed watching these adorable ducks! Just driving the golf cart around the lake was so relaxing.

Petting Zoo

The petting zoo is only open in the mornings but we had so much fun watching these cute animals!

Ice Cream!

Omg they have the best ice cream and so many choices in the bear den. They even have a movie night, which we were unable to attend but I can imagine how great it would be eating ice cream and enjoying a flick in the Bear Den.

Photo Opportunities

They have so many cute places to take pictures, including cute little boats!

Characters

Boo Boo! Yogi bear and Boo Boo come out to visit with guests! Even my son had to get a pic with Boo Boo, well after I made him.

Camp Fun

Even though you are at a park with so many fun activities, you can still enjoy camp life at you cabin. We roasted marshmallows and made hot dogs over our fire. They also have RVs you can rent for an even more camping experience.

Archery and Lost Maze

They also have archery you can enjoy, my son didn’t enjoy it as much as paintball but it’s a great activity. We also went through a maze, at night, and could not find our way out which was terrifyingly fun!

The list of things you can do at Jellystone goes on and on.

Be sure to download the Jellystone app upon arrival so you stay up to date with activities going on each day.

They had nightly Karaoke parties and dance parties, but my son thought he was too old to participate.

They also have a water park and two swimming pools, which we did not get to use because it was still cold.

I hope you enjoyed learning about our Jellystone experience and hopefully you will get to experience the fun too!

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Shein Review

I recently ordered from Shein for the first time. I have to say I was overall very satisfied with my purchases.

The prices were great! Of coarse, there were some pieces that I was not happy with, so here is my review to help you shop with Shein.

Here are the pieces I purchased and some tips if you are thinking of ordering from Shein.

Plus Size Pajama Set

This pajama set is so pretty! Unfortunately, the top was extremely small and was more like a tight crop top. The bottoms actually fit perfect, which is odd because most of the time I have trouble with bottoms fitting rather than the tops.

Paint Splatter Tee

So reading product description is very important when ordering from Shein. I did not read the item description. This tee is not a cotton shirt, it’s more of a spandex material. It is a little snug as well and I did size up. Another thing I did not realize is that their 5xl is actually a 3x, and that is the biggest size.

Cheetah Panel Leggings

I love these leggings! They were true to size and fit perfectly. They are also so comfortable! 5 stars!

Sport Bra and Leggings Set

I am in love with this workout set! The price is amazing and the product was amazing. The bra and leggings fit perfectly and very comfortable. I will be purchasing more of these!

Tie Dye Ripped Tee

This shirt is a bit small, it clings to my fat roll. I love the colors and I still wear it with an under shirt to hide my fat.

Tie Dye Pajama Set

Ok so the price is great for a pajama set. The shirt is a little shorter than I like but it’s just for sleeping, so I don’t mind. The bottoms are perfect!

Tie Dye Maxi Dress

This dress is the most comfortable thing ever! Absolutely love it! I think I’ll be buying another one in another color.

All of this was a little over $100.00! For plus size clothing, I think that is an awesome deal and overall I am impressed with their products.

Just remember to read reviews and item descriptions.

If you are thinking of trying Shein here is a code for you to get 15% off no minimal order or 20% off $50.

HANNAHG20

Good luck and happy shopping!

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Another Year Older

Do you ever feel depressed as your birthday approaches?

The feeling of dread that another year has passed and you haven’t achieved what you wanted to achieve in that year of life.

You are not alone, I feel that dread and hopelessness as I grow another year older.

I see others that are younger than me, achieving great things, that I hoped to achieve.

While I am happy for them, the sense of failure looms over me.

When I was younger, I had so many hopes and dreams that I had hoped to fulfill before I turned 30.

I wanted to write my first book, have a successful business and be known for something.

Now, as I turn 37, I still have those same hopes and dreams. For some reason, I haven’t been able to achieve them.

Maybe laziness on my part, it just seems like the World is against me sometimes.

It leaves me feeling useless, and I feel as if I should give up.

I know I will stop feeling sorry for myself, pick myself back up, and continue making my dreams come true.

Just because I haven’t achieved all my goals this year, I am still alive and I was able to celebrate another year of life. That in itself is a reason to celebrate.

I will continue to fight to make sure I make my dreams a reality. I will not give up!

Hopefully before my next birthday I can say I did something great!

Never give up on your dreams!

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Another year gone

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Texas Blizzard 2021

This has been a rough week for us Texans.

First, we were hit with a winter storm of ice, that left our roads slippery.

Then, we were hit with another winter storm that brought snow and the lowest temperatures Texas has seen since the 40s, and another round of ice.

Texas wasn’t prepared for this kind of weather, we are more prepared for over 100 degree weather.

Our power grid was not prepared to handle the amount of electricity being used to warm houses, so many of us were left with rolling blackouts or no electricity at all, for days!

Most Texans don’t have 4 wheel drive vehicles, so they were stuck in their homes with no power and no water.

So many car accidents happened this week because of the ice, including a massive 100 car pileup on 1-35 where 6 people were killed. My prayers go out to all the victims of that tragic event.

Families searched for firewood to keep them warm.

This has definitely been a hard time for Texas. To see so many struggling to stay warm and have food to eat.

So many families had to throw their food out because of the power outage, and our grocery stores had to throw out spoiled food from their power outages.

The grocery stores are not able to restock fast enough, leaving bare shelves and families searching for food.

As the ice is melting people are finding their pipes busted and are without water.

After all this, I find myself so grateful that I was able to stay warm with my fireplace and was able to feed my family. We had the rolling blackouts but we never fully lost our electricity.

We did go without water for a couple of days but I am beyond thankful that our pipes did not burst.

I am beyond sad for all the families that had to endure so much anguish during this, and for the families still without power and water. My heart and prayers go out to them.

Through all the bad, I saw so much good in my fellow Texans. I saw people opening their homes up for families to stay warm. I saw people delivering firewood and food for families in need.

I pray as the snow melts, my fellow Texans can pick up the pieces this winter storm brought with it.

I am proud to be a Texan!

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Texas blizzard!! Plus size Elsa!

Plus size Elsa!!
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Homemade Valentines Gift Ideas

I am a sucker for a homemade gift. Over the years my kids and I have enjoyed giving and recieving homemade gifts.

With valentines coming up, I am already thinking of cute homemade gifts for my family.

I would like to share my favorite homemade gifts for Valentines Day. These are gifts that my family and I made together over the last few years. Please forgive the photography, I didn’t always have a great camera.

Teacher Gift Ideas

How cute are these? I traced my kids hands and taped them to lotion for their teachers with “you deserve a hand ” written on them.
Homemade bath bombs. You can find bath bomb recipes all over pinterest. We bought cute jars from the dollar tree and filled them with the bath bombs and basket stuffing.
You’re the balm” . Who doesn’t like getting lip balm?? Just add them to a bag, add basket stuffing and maybe even a few candies.
These are super cute! All you have to do is get some cute fuzzy socks and either big cupcake liners or cute disposable party bowls. You just roll the socks to look like frosting and place into the liner. I placed these into clear plastic bags with ribbon as well.
Teachers always need school supplies so why not give them a gift they can use. We just added little heart notes on each supply and put them into a cute heart basket.

Husband Gifts

This was probably the best gift I ever gave my husband, he loved it. I dont know about you, but I have a bad habit of saving valentine boxes. So I used one I had saved and taped little liquor bottles to the bottom of it. Added a little note in the lid and voila, an awesome man gift.
Ok so my husband loves lottery tickets so I made them into a gift for him. I just used a plastic vase, put a styrofoam ball into the vase and hot glued the tickets and treats onto sticks to stick into the styrofoam ball. He loved it!

Valentines for School

Over the years we have made tons of valentine’s for school parties, but this one was actually a favorite in the classroom. We just bought some plastic dinosaurs and taped them to construction paper with “You are dino mite” written on them.
What kid doesn’t love pop rocks? These were a hit in the classroom as well.

Teenage Gifts

Now that I have older kids, they don’t like the cuddly stuff animals or cute valentine gifts, so I make them baskets with what they like. That year my kids both wanted smart watches so I put them in a cute basket and added candy and a card. They really enjoyed this gift.
Last year I decided to get my family gift cards to their favorite places. I hot glued them to their favored drinks with some candy and beef jerky, they all loved this gift.

I hope you enjoyed my homemade Valentine’s gifts from my family.

Happy Valentine’s Day from my family to yours!! ♥️♥️