-->

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

My Top 5 Under $20

So as I continue to get older, the more aware I am of my skin and my body, and how it is aging. You don't really think much about it until one day, you're old! Well,..... older! It's not that I did horrible things to my body or skin, it's just that I didn't think as much about them when I was younger. Therefore, I didn't take as best care of them, as I should have.

As I searched for beauty products more recently, I have found two things. It is very hard to find products that are completely organic/natural, without chemicals and all that (there is a long list of no-no ingredients, some worse than others). Number two, if you do find a product that is all natural without any chemicals and all that, they tend to be very expensive!!!

That was my dilemma and I refused to spend a fortune on beauty products and other organic/natural items. I knew that there had to be other options!! So I just kept on researching! And guess what, there ARE products out there that are all natural/organic that don't cost a fortune. Here is a list of my top five beauty products for under $20. I currently use all of these items and highly recommend because they do really work, they are all natural/organic, and affordable! You can click on each image if you would like to purchase for yourself.










I just want to state, that I know that there are people out there who believe in eating 100% organic and only using organic, natural products with no chemicals, and that's fine, maybe they can afford it! I can't and I personally do not believe that this will prolong my life. I believe that God is in control of my future and the outcome, and becoming overly obsessed with something is not good. That said, I am still going to do my best to take care of my body, skin, and my family.

BUT,...... and that's a big but, I am also going to enjoy my life. And if that means having an iced coffee from Dunkin Donuts, or eating fast food once in awhile, or using sunscreen that is not organic, then so be it. I think I will be just fine! Some things once in awhile are ok!!

I hope that you found this list of products useful and didn't take offense to this post. I just wanted to share my experience and products I found, if any of you are in the same boat! If you have any products that you would like to share that are natural/organic and affordable, please comment below and let me know! Many Blessings!

Simply Yours,

Tuesday, June 5, 2018

My Summer Reading List

So every year, I create a list of books that I want to read. I think at this point, my list is like two pages long!! Yikes!! The truth is, I probably only get through 3 books a year! I always think that I am going to have more time than I actually do, and with another baby on the way, I will probably have even less time.



I am hoping that this Summer I can get through at least two new books. I have one that I started awhile ago that I still need to finish as well, and then I have two books that aren't really chapter books, but more like daily devotional books. I'll explain more in the descriptions!

SUMMER READING LIST

1. The Magnolia Story: I have been wanting to read this for a while now! I love Chip and Joanna, and
                                      everything about their lifestyle, so I definitely can't put off reading it any
                                      longer!

2. Chasing Slow: My life is about to get a whole lot busier when baby number two arrives, but maybe
                            if I change my lifestyle a little now, it wont be so crazy. I can't wait to read this. I
                            hate feeling rushed and always on the go, so this book is just what I need to prepare.

3. Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World: I started this book about 3 months ago and never finished.
                                                                      It wasn't that I didn't like the book, but life happens, ya
                                                                      know, and I just never got around to finishing it. I am so
                                                                      excited to see how it ends!

4. Praying For Boys: I already read through this book once, but I am reading through it again as part
                                  of my morning devotionals, along with the next book on my list. This book
                                  and the next one are meant to be read each day as a prayer for your son(s). I
                                  definitely recommend this book if you are a mom of boys!

5. Praying for my Husband from Head to Toe: This book is just like 'Praying for Boys', but instead
                                                                            they are prayers for my husband. I am already through
                                                                            day seven, and when I finish, I will start over again!!




So that's my list, nothing crazy, but I wanted to keep it simple and realistic! I am afraid to ask, in fear of my list getting even longer, but if you have a good book, that you have read lately, please feel free to share! I'm sure that I will get around to reading it eventually!! Happy reading and many blessings!


Simply Yours,

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Living a Life of Curiosity

I recently received the latest issue of the Magnolia Journal, and I have to say that this has been my favorite issue yet. There have been so many awesome things in this issue. Every page is filled with something that I want to try for myself. I love that this issue is centered around curiosity, all of the ideas and articles are somehow related to living a life of curiosity.



This got me thinking, I am really, a very curious person!! I am always wondering what it would be like to do this, or try that. I love making lists of things I want to try or create, and I love it!! I think that we should never lose our sense of wonder or the desire to create things.

However, I am sure that you have heard the phrase, curiosity killed the cat, and there have been many times that my curiosity didn't result in the way I had hoped. I have had my ideas and creations that just didn't work out the way I imagined. Many times, certain things that work for others, just didn't work for me, and I have been left disappointed quite often.

This leads me to another point, and that's many times my curiosity has lead me to try and do too much or to try to do something that wasn't meant for me. Often times, I come up with ideas I want to try, or sometimes I see something that someone else has done, and I am curious to know if that will work for me too. This is when I need to put myself in check. I need to think about what it is exactly that I am hoping for in my outcome. I have to remember that I can't do everything and more specifically, I wasn't created to. God created me with a unique set of gifts and has a specific plan just for me. What may work for one person, may not work for me and my family, and I am learning to be ok with that.

I'm definitely not going to stop being curious, I don't think that's possible for me. There are so many things, that I am hopeful, will turn out great, but I'm going to rest in the truth, that it's ok when they don't,.... and then move on. I trust that whatever He has in store for me each season is good enough.

Simply Yours,

Saturday, May 5, 2018

What We've Been Up To Lately

It's been almost four months since I have written a blog post!! So much has transpired since the last time I shared with you and I am hoping to fill you in with as much as I can without overwhelming you or boring you. I took a look back at the last post I did, in which I talked about being rooted in Him and I created some bookmarks with scriptures on them. Each one had a specific theme, being rooted in His promises, His plan, a confident hope, and His grace. What's funny is that these four themes or topics speak directly to how things have gone in our lives lately and I didn't even plan it that way when I created them.

I guess I should tell you, although I am sure most of you know, we are expecting a baby girl in October and we couldn't be more excited. This whole journey has been long, and at times, very discouraging, but He is good and His timing is perfect!! It all started with a promise. A promise that I would someday get pregnant again, but I had to really trust His plan and timing, all while keeping a confident hope. Well, He answered and we are so grateful and blessed. When I felt, from God, that I needed to take a break from Instagram and my blog writing, I didn't know this would be the reason why, but He did!! And believe me, I had to give myself a lot of grace during the first trimester, because I barely did anything at all and I always felt so guilty!



But I am back, and not as tired or sick anymore, and ready to share with you all again! First up on my list of things, is my blog name. As you can see I still have the same web address, but my blog name has changed. A little over 6 years ago, I started my very first blog, which was called Touch of Simple.  After I got pregnant with my son, I stopped blogging for awhile and eventually lost the name. When I decided to start blogging again, I felt like I had to completely start over, so I created a whole new blog and self titled it, The Erin Elizabeth. I have had this blog now for almost 4 years, and more and more, lately, I have been thinking about that name Touch of Simple again. I have also recently started a small side business of interior decorating, and I really wanted a name that fit. So, I decided to change the name of my blog, but keep the same address, so that people won't get too confused. Plus, I think that they are both fitting. My web address is who I am, easy to find, but my blog, and now my business, have a new name that represents what I am about, simplicity!! Simple style, and keeping life simple! Hope you like it!

With Spring in full swing, I just wanted to share a few fun things that I have been up to, these past few weeks!!
It seems these days that everyone has been creating these wardrobe capsules. I have to admit, at first I was a little skeptical, but after doing it now for almost a year, it's definitely the way to go. There could not be a better way to simplify your wardrobe! The idea is to only have a select number of pieces (I have 40) that you can mix and match to create many different outfits. You carefully go through your wardrobe and select only those items that you really love and that can mix and match well with all of your other pieces, and then you get rid of the rest!! I know it seems crazy, but it really does save you time and stress when choosing your outfits each day. The process can be scary at first, but once you do it for a couple seasons it gets easier. I have learned to select quality items over quantity. Some of my items I use through out every season, like jeans, certain shoes, and tops, and the rest is seasonal. I have only purchased a few new items to add over the past 3 seasons, with the plan to purchase less overtime!! For this season I have about 5 dresses, 10 pairs of pants, a lot of shirts, a jean jacket (staple), and 8 pairs of shoes. Check put a few of my favorites from this season below.


I didn't realize at first, but all of my favorites are from Old Navy! I guess I really loved what they had this season! If you want to see how they fit on, you can take a look in my Instagram stories under features!

It took me awhile to get my house decorated for Spring, but it is finally complete. Now it's time go through and do all of my spring cleaning (I will talk about that next). I usually do it the reverse, but the first trimester of this pregnancy really kicked my butt, and I didn't feel like doing much of anything!! Here's a quick photo Home Tour. Can you guess what my theme was?







It's that time of year again! Time to go through everything and get rid off all the junk and clean out all the areas that have been forgotten! I really don't mind spring cleaning, because it's a chance for me to go through everything and organize it! Plus we have an annual yard sale every year around this time, in our development, so it's the perfect time to do it! I have created a simple checklist for you, if you plan on doing some Spring cleaning as well! I try to check one or two items off of my list each day. It is less overwhelming too when you break it up. I make two piles trash and sell/giveaway. It normally takes me about two weeks to complete everything!



We are already into May and school is almost over, which means Summer is right around the corner. I don't know about your kids, but when my son had off for Spring Break, he was begging to go back to school 3 days in. This means, I better have stuff planned for this Summer or we are all going to be in trouble!

Summer break can be awesome! Believe me, as a SLP who works in a school, I can't wait for school to be over! Now that I have a child, things are a little different! I need to have things, lots of things, to keep him from getting bored. Let's be honest though, I am not Superwoman and I am pregnant, so there are only so many things I can do. I created a bucket list of fun things to do this Summer. The best part is, it is stuff that we can all do together!! There are enough activities listed to do two a week. I also plan to take swimming over our in-laws a lot, many trips to the park, and he loves mini-golf!! However, that can get pretty expensive if you are going twice a week. I also found a lot of easy crafts/games on Pinterest that we can do together. That's why I added 'create something new every week' on my list!! Although my list is not fail proof, I am sure to still hear "I'm bored" once or twice, it gives me lots of ideas and it's a good plan to have, so that I am prepared when I hear those words!!

To grab a copy for yourself, just click on the download button below the picture! 

Download Here

I hope that wasn't too much for you at once and hope that May is a fantastic month for you!! Many Blessings!!

Simply Yours,





Friday, January 26, 2018

January Freebie

I started a new theme this year for my morning coffee chats that I host every Monday morning!!

I chose the word 'rooted' as my word of the year and I decided to follow suit during my bible study time. Every week I pray that God will reveal to me a new way that I can become rooted in Him. Then on Mondays I share all that I have learned from the previous week during my daily study time.

I decided to create these bookmarks for you, one for each of the four different chats I have done so far. I included a verse that I shared from that week as well.

For the month of January, here are the ways that we have learned to become rooted in Him




I will continue to create a set for each month moving forward. I hope that you enjoy them. All you need to do is click the download button below to receive a free copy for yourself! Many Blessings!






Simply Yours,


Thursday, December 21, 2017

Rooted in Him

I feel like I don't even know where to start with this blog post. I have everything in my head that I want to say, but don't really know how to express exactly what it is that I am feeling.

I wish that I could take you for a long ride through my brain, so that you could see what I mean, when I say, it never stops. It's always going. I mean, I do sleep at night. It doesn't keep me awake, lying in bed, but for the most part, it's always going! What can I create next? What project can I take on? What new idea can I come up with for my blog or Instagram? How can I take my passion for decor and turn it into something new and different? The wheels are always turning. More, more, more!!

Eventually these passions for writing, blogging, decorating, and designing, and trying to be more, are no longer things that bring joy. They start to evoke feelings of dread and doubt, and stress and anxiety. I get so caught up with trying to fit in with this world and follow suit with what everyone else is doing that I end up confused and lost.

In Romans 12 verse 2 it says......

 "Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect."

God's will. Do we ever fully understand or know what His will is for our life is. I feel that there have been many situations, experiences, and storms that I can definitely say were part of God's will for my life, but it's always after the fact, that I am able to realize and see this. Then there are other times when I am not so sure if what I am doing is part of His will for me OR if it's my will for me. You know what I am saying? That's where I am right now. I feel that I've lost my voice, and part of my passion, because my desire is no longer to create and do what pleases Him, but to please myself. I'm chasing after the plans that I have for my life, instead of seeking to know His plan. 

Jesus made it very clear, what it is, that we are to do with our lives. He spoke to his disciples and said,

“If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me.  If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul?Is anything worth more than your soul?"

That's a lot to take in and it's certainly not easy to do. And it's definitely not easy to admit, when you feel that conviction yourself. Over the past few months, I have been recognizing this more and more and have been trying to make that change. Maybe others don't see it, but I feel it. I feel the anxiety, the comparison, the desire to seek approval from others, the insecurities that I am not as good as the other person. I feel the stress of wanting to do it all, so that I can feel accomplished.

And it's crazy how this feeling comes in waves. During one season in your life, you feel good about your faith and your walk and then so easily, that relationship, that feeling of knowing your worth in Him, it just slips away. You start chasing your plans and your desires once again and He is no longer first anymore. Oh how the flesh is weak.

But my God, He is strong! And that is why I will always need Him. I will never be perfect. I will never have it all together. Some seasons will be better than others, but it is during these seasons, when I am weak, that I know may faith is being tested and my relationship with Him will only grow stronger!

My word for 2018 is rooted. Rooted in Him.

root1
ro͞ot/
verb
past tense: rooted; past participle: rooted
  1. 2
    establish deeply and firmly.

    "vegetarianism is rooted in Indian culture"

Rooted in Him and not the customs of this World. Rooted in Him, so that I don't need to seek the approval of others to determine my worth. Rooted in Him, so that I may know what His will is for my life. His good and perfect and pleasing will. I am giving up my own way, my plans and my desires, because there is nothing out there in this World that is worth losing my soul or my voice to, unless I am losing it to take up my cross and follow Him.




So this isn't goodbye, it's until we meet again. My blogging and decorating journey (and other desires), they're not over, I'm just pressing pause. Taking a break from pursuing what I want, and earnestly seeking what He wants for me.

I pray that the Lord will bless you on your journey into 2018. That you will be rooted and established in His love and that the true joy we experience at Christmas will carry on in our hearts for the whole year!

Many Blessings,