Happy New Year all! After a fabulous Christmas break filled with the messiest of activities and great times building memories with dear family and friends, it’s time to get back to some sort of order in every part of life. With that said, over the past few days I have heard of two families that have lost their homes to fires and I’m reminded of how grateful we are to have this warm and comfortable home, even if the mess and the clutter is a constant. This really isn’t a major, or even a minor, problem right? WE HAVE A HOME and I am counting this messy, unorganized home a blessing!



Above are a couple shots of disaster areas during and after creating. It may not seem like this helps the organization process but they actually USED supplies we have had for a really long time and spent hours creating with legos, cardboard, and hot glue.

I really do want to simplify our home but these recent events have given me a very different perspective on the method and maybe it will just have to be at a slower pace than I have planned. The kids have way too much fun making a mess of it and I really can’t blame them – messy projects are fun!

A few of our favorite activities over the break were baking treats for neighbors, teachers, friends, and family. Making ornaments and sibling gifts. Looking forward to the acts of kindness each day and simply enjoying family time together.

Below are photos from a super easy recipe for kids to help with. Gluten free Almond Orange Snowballs from Recipe Girl. We added in crushed peppermint for some of them and they were delicious.

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One of the ornaments the kids made using strips of colored paper.


The puppet house that the boys made for Emma



The soccer field James made for Jack with an oversized shoe box lid, paper, pipe cleaners, and netting from bags of fruit. Clearly he was proud of this!


Mind craft figures that Jack made for James using our legos.

Inspired by a gift (below) from Godfather/Uncle Dan, the boys had fun adding layers of armor to their legos + more creations with corks, bottle caps, and wooden beads.






So, instead of always feeling like I have to clean or organize more, I am going to try to embrace the mess just a little bit and be grateful for a house to contain it and the creative kids who live here.

If you would like to donate, even just $1, to the Family fire funds below I know they would be more than grateful for your generosity.

The McCarthy’s family fire fund

The Koehler family fire fund

Enjoy the beginning of a nourishing and peaceful new year and take a moment to read these Resolutions from Pope Francis that should be resolutions for a lifetime, not just for the year ahead.

HAPPY 2014!