Rants & Musings

This is a place that allows me to share my thoughts on a variety of topics, not necessarily related to my family, or the challenges we face. These are my thoughts, my feelings, my expressions.

  • Holidays,  Rants & Musings

    Easter Basket Stuffer & Filler Ideas

    Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via these links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclaimers for more information.

    Spring is such a wonderful time of year! I love it when everything comes back to life after the winter. Easter is always the first sign of spring to me! It means we made it through the winter, and warmer weather is just around the corner. For Easter, we always go to an Easter egg hunt, and I always have baskets for my kids. Instead, I would rather not fill the basket with candy, so I have filled their baskets with other items over the years.

    Here is the list of non-candy items I love putting into their easter baskets.

    Spring Outfits

    Every Easter, I get my children a new spring outfit for their Easter baskets. It’s nothing fancy, usually just a pair of new shorts and a shirt. It is always fun to have a new outfit when the weather gets warmer. My kids tend to outgrow some of their clothes over the winter, so putting a new spring outfit into their Easter baskets helps prepare them for the new spring and keeps their wardrobe current.

    DONWEN Toddler Kids Girl
    3pcs Spring Summer Girl Outfits Set

    Rating: 5 out of 5.

    DOKOTOO KIDS Girls Summer Outfits Cute T-Shirt and Shorts Set with Side Pockets

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.


    Our family swims a lot in the summer, and I mean a lot! By the end of the summer, our swimming suits are usually trashed. When spring comes around again, they no longer have a swimming suit. So, I like to get them a new one every Easter for the new swim season. I typically try to get them two swimsuits if I can find a good deal just because of how much we swim.

    Tutorutor Kid Girls High Waisted Cute 2 Piece Peplum Halter Bikini Sets Ruffle Floral Print Teen Spaghetti Swimsuits

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

    FERBIA Women Falbala Bikini Set Halter High Waisted Swimsuit 2 Piece Ruffle Tummy Control Spaghetti Strap Tankini

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

    Swim Goggles

    Every Easter, I get my children new swimming goggles with their new swimsuits. My children love to swim with goggles, and they don’t like to swim without them, so like our swimsuits, our goggles get ruined by the end of the summer.

    Speedo Unisex-Adult Swim Goggles Mirrored Vanquisher 2.0

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

    OutdoorMaster Kids Swim Goggles 2 Pack Swimming Goggles for Kids

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

    Sandals & Flip-Flops

    Another great idea for an Easter basket filler that I’ve done in the past is to get the kids some new sandals or flip-flops. Over the winter, my children have typically outgrown their sandals, so if they have, I’ll get them a new pair. I don’t always get them sandals, but only get them if they desperately need them.

    OUYADU Kids Cloud Slides Boys Girls Flip Flops Slip On Beach Sandals

    Rating: 5 out of 5.

    NORTY Kids Sandals – Girls Sandals, Flip Flops – Boys Slides – Little Kid – Big Kid

    Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

    Small Games and Other Items

    I also like to put some simple, small things in their Easter baskets every year. This changes year to year, but here are some items I like to include—card games, notebook, stickers, chapstick, markers, sidewalk chalk, or bubbles. For my oldest, I like to do small amounts on gift cards to his favorite places to eat.

    We love the Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza game, which has been a definite hit at our house. The kids go crazy when they play it, and we laugh like crazy!

    Taco Cat Goat Cheese Pizza

    Rating: 5 out of 5.

    Crayola Sidewalk Chalk

    Rating: 5 out of 5.

    These are some fun things I like to do for my family. It changes slightly from year to year, but this is what I like to do for the most part. I will not say we don’t give them candy because that is not true, but these items help, so they don’t get as much. Do you have Easter traditions that you do? What do you like to put in your Easter baskets? I would love to hear!

  • Rants & Musings

    2 Things That Surprised Me When Booking An Alaskan Cruise

    Are you thinking about booking an Alaskan cruise? We booked one for this coming summer! We have been on a small cruise before, so when we booked an Alaskan cruise, these two things surprised me the most.

    Booking in Advance

    The first thing that surprised me about booking an Alaskan cruise is how far in advance you need to book. We went on a Mexican cruise about two years ago and booked it about a month or so before we went, and everything was fine; we had no problems. We could select from many available cabins, dinner times, or ship activities; however, we booked our upcoming Alaskan cruise seven months in advance, and it felt like we were booking late.

    By the time we booked, there were only a few rooms left. We could not pick our dining hall times because they were all taken, so we just had to take what was left. Most of the excursions were already booked on the ship, and we will have to book some of our tours through companies in the port.

    Lesson number one! If you plan on taking an Alaskan cruise, I strongly encourage you to book a year or more in advance. You can find better room placement, pick your dining hall times, and book excursions from the cruise line.

    Sticker Shock

    The second thing that surprised me was how much more expensive it was than a Mexico cruise. I was SHOCKED at how much it would cost us to take a seven-day cruise to Alaska. We booked it with discounts when the cruise line had specials, but I was still sticker-shocked.

    Lesson number two! Alaskan cruises are much more expensive than your typical Mexico or Caribbean cruise. Know that you will spend more on your booking!

    I wouldn’t let these surprises deter you from booking an Alaskan cruise. Even though we were caught off guard and wished we were a little more prepared for these surprises, we still booked our cruise. I have heard Alaskan cruises are incredible, and I can’t wait to go. I am excited about the scenery and the wildlife. It sure is going to be an adventure. My family is also super excited, and my son tells me every day, “One less day until the cruise!”

  • Rants & Musings

    What I Learned My First Month Blogging

    What a month it has been. This blog has had its ups and downs. If you have been reading along, you know how nervous I was about starting this blog (read Have You Ever Been Nervous About Starting Something New? I Am!) I have learned so much just in this first month. Here are the things I learned in my first month of blogging. It has been challenging, scary, exciting, imperfect, and full of mistakes.

    Blogging is Challenging

    Starting a blog is extremely hard. Creating a writing schedule and creating ideas for blog posts has been one of the more challenging parts for me this first month. This is something new, and I have had to rearrange some things to figure out when to write.

    Writing, in general, has been difficult for me. I don’t know where to start. I have so many thoughts I want to share; they are a jumbled mess in my head. Then I read other blogs, and I feel like I am not good at this and want to give up. I would say just keeping this up has been challenging in and of itself. Let’s say that starting this blog has been a lot harder than I ever thought it would be.

    Blogging Can Be Scary

    Starting a blog is one of the scariest things I have ever done. Opening up to people is scary for me because I am timid. I prefer to stay in my little bubble. I worry so much about what others think when they read my articles. I worry about making sense and if I am getting my point across. I am scared that I am boring and that I sound stupid. Being scared and doubting myself has been the one I have been struggling with the most.

    Blogging is Exciting

    I have learned that even through all the challenges and the scary parts, it has also been exciting. I didn’t tell anyone that I was starting a blog. That was part of doubting myself, but it was so exciting when I finally launched my blog. When I read my first comment, I was so happy. It made me feel like I could do this. It is also exciting connecting with people going through the same thing you are.

    Blogging Can Be Imperfect and Full Of Mistakes

    Obviously, from the name of my blog, you can figure out that I am so far from being perfect. This blog proved that. There have been so many imperfect things, but this journey is about learning that it doesn’t have to be perfect.

    I have made so many mistakes this first month of blogging. I read other blog posts that tell you not to do this when you start a blog or to do that. For most of those things, I made all the mistakes other bloggers have said not to make. That is how we learn, though, right? By making mistakes.

    It has been a long and exciting month and very worth it. I need to remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect. I also have to keep reminding myself that I can’t compare my first month of blogging to someone who has been blogging for years. I hope to continue to grow and learn new things about myself.

    Above all, the number one thing I have learned in my first month of blogging is to remember that it doesn’t have to be perfect as long as I am doing my best!

  • Rants & Musings

    How to Avoid Doing Laundry on the Weekends

    Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links, meaning if you decide to make a purchase via these links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. See my disclaimers for more information.

    Do you like to do laundry? How about doing laundry on the weekends? Doing laundry for me is on my list of chores I hate to do. It is right up there with cleaning the bathrooms. It is also on the list of things that must be done, no matter how much I dislike it. I would prefer not to do laundry on the weekends, so I have devised a schedule that allows me to enjoy the weekends with my family.

    My Weekly Laundry Schedule

    Before I start, I want to say that this schedule works for me. The best thing to do is make a schedule that works for you and your life. I am a stay-at-home mom, so this might not work the same for those working or those busy and not home all the time. I hope I can still inspire you so you can have days when you don’t need to do laundry.

    I love to make schedules and be organized. It is just something that I enjoy doing. So, of course, that is how I do my laundry with a schedule. Keep in mind that I have three kids. You may have less or more than that. I may have less or more laundry than you do, so adjust this to work best for you. Anyway, here is my schedule.


    Monday is the day that I do my husband’s and my laundry. Depending on the week we had, I have anywhere from three to five loads to wash. I start my loads the night before by sorting our laundry and putting a single load in on a delay to start in the morning before I wake up. My washing machine has a delayed start feature, which is the best thing ever! So, I will put a load of laundry in on Sunday night before I go to bed, and I will delay it to start for 8 hours. Then, I can rotate laundry and start a new load when I wake up Monday morning. It saves me so much time. The rest of the day, I rotate my laundry as soon as a load is done until I have completed all my loads. I also like to fold the clothes as soon as they come out of the dryer. They don’t get done if I don’t, which happens more than I care to admit.


    Tuesday is the day that I wash all of the towels we used that week, including the kitchen towels and rags. This can also take a couple of loads. I wash my towels in baking soda and vinegar. This makes it so they don’t get that mildew smell.


    On Wednesday, I wash my daughter’s clothes. I have two daughters, so I have a few loads this day. I wash their regular clothes separately and then a load of delicates together. Here is a small confession. During the school year, I wash and fold their laundry, and they must put it away. During the summer, when they have more time, they are in charge of washing their clothes. Also, use a color catcher so you don’t have to separate your clothes. You can wash them all together. This is a huge time saver!


    On Thursday, I wash my son’s clothes. This day doesn’t take me long because my son doesn’t wear as many clothes as my girls! I have fewer loads this day, and because of that, I will wash anything extra. Sometimes, I have soccer uniforms or swimsuits or some other random things that I will wash.


    On Friday, I will wash the sheets. I just started using the new Lysol Washing Sanitizer, which makes my sheets smell so good. It makes me feel like they get extra clean when I use this.

    Saturday and Sunday

    On Saturday and Sunday, I relax and spend time with my family! Like always, this is not a perfect schedule, but it is the best I can do!

    I love that I have days that I don’t have to worry about doing laundry. Like I said before, this is what works for me. Are there weeks that it doesn’t work out like this? Yes, all the time. It isn’t perfect. I try my best to follow this. Do you have a laundry schedule? I would love to hear how you get all your laundry done during the week! Please comment below!

  • Holidays,  Rants & Musings

    Discover the Magic of a Girls’ Weekend

    I am fortunate to live close to all of my sisters. We all have a good relationship with one another. My mom, sisters, sister-in-laws, and I have a yearly tradition of going on a girls’ weekend. This is a chance to relax, unwind, goof off, and have fun! If you have never done a girls’ weekend, I would highly recommend you do!

    This is one of my favorite times of the year and something I always look forward to! We usually go from Friday to Monday, but we accommodate the schedule according to everyone’s availability! Two of my sisters are school teachers, so we typically go in the summer. We try to keep the costs under control, so we usually go to an aunt’s cabin up in Bear Lake, Utah, but sometimes we rent a condo or another place to stay.

    On the first day of our girls’ weekend, we go shopping. It is exhausting but very worth it. Once we finish shopping, we drive to the cabin or condo. Sometimes, we have a fashion show to model what we all bought for each other. It is so much fun!

    Over the next three days, we do whatever we want to do. We watch movies, play A LOT games, go for walks, and stay up too late. We talk, visit, listen to music, eat breakfast on the patio in the sun, and enjoy the quiet without the kids! I think that is one of the biggest benefits – no kids to care for!

    We also eat way too much! We will eat out sometimes, but we usually cook simple meals at the cabin. We bring snacks and treats to share with everyone.

    Sometimes we do a favorite things gift. We don’t spend much money on this, so it is small. A favorite things gift is an item you enjoy and want to share with others. It can be a treat, drink, lotion, or nail polish. You buy that item for everyone in your group. We usually wrap them, so it is a surprise. When it is time to give them out, we go around the circle, and everyone explains their favorite thing and why. Then you come home with some new fun items!

    Why should you need a girls’ weekend? For us, our lives are very demanding. We have jobs or kids to take care of or activities to do. On this weekend, we get to focus on ourselves. We get to relax and have conversations with other adults. It is the best four days to recharge as moms. Returning home, we feel ready to take on the world again.

    I would recommend this to everyone. Find some of your people, go on a girls’ weekend, and focus on yourself for a change! I’m also always looking for new ideas to do on our girls’ weekend. What things do you do on your girls’ weekend?