I’m back!

Whew, it sure has been a long time! Looks like I stopped blogging right around when life got crazy (and I got nauseated… ha!). Here’s some of what’s happened since I last wrote:

  • We finally moved into our new house! We’ve been doing house projects galore (including building built-ins from scratch!). It’s been a slow process to get the house set up, but some parts are finally getting just how I want them. We love this house and are so thankful.
  • The day we moved into our new home (a few days after purchasing our first house!), Beach Dad found out his old company was tanking. (Smart man didn’t tell me until a few days later… I might have had an anxiety attack!)  He found a new job fairly easily – hooray Silicone Harbor! – and it’s his favorite job yet.
  • As we’ve gotten more and more plugged in in Charleston, we’ve experienced the blessings of friendships and a community we have longed & prayed for for years.
  • Our biggest news is that April 2014, Beach Boy was born! He’s an incredibly sweet baby and brings us all such joy.
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  • “Beach Baby” is now 4 and not so much a baby anymore! “Beach Girl” is 6 and in kindergarten (mostly Montessori at home, but our own variation and I can’t wait to fill you in!) . They get new blog names now — “BeachGirl4” and “BeachGirl6”. I know – I’m so creative.

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So much more daily life — growing, cleaning, cooking, laughing, crying, and learning together –has been happening. I’m excited to start blogging again; I’ve really missed it. I have so many posts and topics swirling around in my head and can’t wait to get them on a screen. I’m not sure how often I’ll post, but you can expect to see more of me around here than you have, at least! See you again soon!

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Best of 2012

Happy New Year!  I hope that y’all had a great Christmas and are feeling refreshed and encouraged heading into the new year. We had a quiet Christmas at home in Charleston, just the four of us, and loved experiencing Christmas through the excited and delighted eyes of our children. It’s been a long time since I really experienced Christmas “like a child” and I was grateful for a taste of it this season!

As we enter 2013, I want to say “thank you” to y’all, my wonderful readers.  I started this blog a little over 6 months ago and wasn’t sure if anyone beyond my family and close friends would care what I had to say, but I figured it’d be a fun creative outlet for me.

I’m blown away every time I check my Google Analytics to see how many of you are out there.  (Over 12,000 page views since July!)  When I look, at first I’m excited that so many people are checking in. Then, I get a little intimidated that there are so many people reading what I have to say (I try not to think about it too much so I can keep writing…).  And, often, I start to wonder – who are all these people?!

I truly am so thankful and humbled that y’all would stop by! (And, I’d love to hear from you so I can get to know you too!)

Here are my most popular posts, according to Google analytics:

5. Pinterest Challenge: Kindle Case – Even though I struggled with a tricky buttonhole, I had fun participating in my first-ever Pinterest Challenge and (mostly) successfully completed one of my first sewing projects – a kindle case.

kindle case

4. Pinterest Challenge: Magnetic Message Board – The second Pinterest Challenge, I was much less ambitious and made this fun magnetic message board using a dollar store cookie sheet. I just realized both my Pinterest Challenges were bird-themed…

magnetic message board

3. DIY Fondue Night – This is one of our favorite at-home date nights and hopefully y’all have enjoyed some fondue of your own since I posted my recipes for meat and cheese fondues.

2. Give Great Gifts on a Bare-Bones Budget – Apparently I’m not the only one who has struggled to find great gifts with a minimal budget! The most popular posts in the series were gift ideas for teenage/20-something guys, for couples, and for moms.  For links to all of the posts in this series, you can visit the series’ homepage.

frugal gift ideas

1. Finger Foods for Babies – This is, by far, my most popular post this year. I hope my suggestions for baby’s first foods have helped you feed your baby… and get the chance to eat your own food! There are also some great ideas in the comments.

finger foods for babies

Now, I’d love to hear from you! Is there a general topic you’ve especially enjoyed reading about here? What would you like to see more of? I’ve really enjoyed blogging in 2012 and I hope that my blog is an encouragement and help to you.  I’m looking forward to 2013!