Some Great News to Share!

linen closet 2

Photo Credit: greenhouseds

When I started this site a few months ago, I just wanted a place to record my experiences with parenting, minimalism and simple living. It was a place to have some fun and enjoy the journey. But over the past few months, I have been shocked to see it grow and become something so much more! The compliments and encouragement I have received have really been very encouraging. So after some prayer and contemplation, we decided that it was time to take the next step forward.

And so, Michael and I are very excited to tell you that we are officially launching our new site,! Starting tomorrow, we will be redirecting all views of this blog with our new website. We hope you will check it out, leave a comment, subscribe even!

Also, three billion cheers to my Beloved, who built our entire sitefrom scratch. I am so incredibly grateful to him for his love and support, and especially his skills.

We have some great ideas coming up for this website. I hope you join us as we continue to grow and expand.  Please come and see!

March 31, 2011 at 11:49 AM Leave a comment

Accomplished! Project333

she wasn't kidding when she said she had nothing to wear

Photo Credit:  jamelah

Today is March 31st, and I have officially completed my first round of Project333.  For anyone who is unfamiliar with it, please check out Be More With Less, Courtney Carver’s wonderful challenge.

Personally, this one was easy for me.  For starters, I’m pretty low maintenance.  I don’t wear makeup.  I don’t wear jewelry (outside my wedding ring and Tau cross and occasionally a watch). I don’t attend any specific events that require social dress codes.

Secondly, I’m a SAHM.  I tend not to wear clothes that will get ruined by flinging food and grey water.  Jeans, tank tops and sweaters make up the majority of my wardrobe.  Most days I don’t even wear socks.

Having said that, I learned some fascinating things about myself during this experiment.

  1. Being a stay-at-home-mom does not give me license to be frumpy. Back in my Flylady days, I got into the habit of “dressing to my shoes” as soon as I got up.  Now that isn’t always the case.  And having a baby is a great excuse to lounge in PJs, with bed hair and morning breath, til well into the evening.  Diapers, laundry, nursing, etc.  The housework piles up around me.  But I make myself get up, get dressed and fix my hair every day (except on days when I’m not feeling well.  Then I give myself permission to lounge).  Why?  Because I feel better when I’m dressed.  Because I am more productive.  Because my husband deserves a pretty wife when he gets home from work.
  2. Even a stay at home mom can have too many work clothes.  I was shocked to see how many office clothes I have.  Dresses, skirts, shoes, cardigans, slacks!  Cluttering up my closet!  I decided to keep one simple black dress out that I knew would fit me and I put the rest away.  Now that I see I haven’t touched them at all, I will pare it down to just the basics that I love and put that wardrobe aside.  When I return to work, I can pull out the box and feel like I have a whole new wardrobe!  For free!
  3. There is nothing more valuable in a mother’s wardrobe than a good, supportive bra. Specifically, a good supportive nursing bra.  I do not have one.  If anyone has a suggestion for one, I would love to hear about it.
  4. Dressing your age makes a huge difference in how you see yourself. I have a collection of silly t-shirts. It is dawning on me that I have outgrown them, and not just physically.  They look silly on me.  As I weed out my wardrobe, I intend to add them to my “give away” piles to make room for things more appropriate to my style and needs: v-necks, nursing shirts, tunics, sweaters.  The silly t-shirts have their place, but not in my closet.
  5. Clothes last a lot longer than you think. Even the lesser quality products can be stretched quite far, farther than one would expect!  I have a pair of pajamas that I have had for over two years that are finally becoming threadbare.  A sweater that my mother bought for me as a birthday gift…eleven years ago.  I try not to buy anything that can’t just be thrown in and out of my washing machine and dryer.  And even with my roughness, I still manage to use the same items without rips, tears or stains.

So what’s next?  I think I will participate in Project333 once again this summer.  I have challenged Michael to try it too.  My husband is a wee bit more clothes-minded (tee hee hee!) than me.  I’m not sure if he will bite the bullet, so to speak.

I think after another round, I will be ready to take on a new fashion-minded challenge.  I have been following Kristy Powell at One Dress Protest and would dearly love to take on this challenge!  I followed Alex Martin’s Little Brown Dress back in 2005 as well, which I loved.  There is also the 6 Items or Less challenge, but I’m not quite there yet.

My biggest challenge in choosing and maintaining a wardrobe is to somehow work around nursing Naomi.  I wish to continue nursing her as long as she wants to and it can make clothes buying a real challenge.  But I will continue to seek out new options and opportunities to both look and feel good, and provide my daughter with proper nutrition and comfort.

March 31, 2011 at 7:30 AM Leave a comment

All Purpose Tomato Sauce

Tomato Sauce Simmering

Photo credit: Shaw Girl

I never understood the purpose of all the variation of tomato products. Spaghetti sauce, pasta sauce, marinara sauce, pizza sauce, salsa, oy! I find that with the exceptions of some different spices, they pretty much all taste the same to me.

Eventually, once we have made some headway with out attempts at gardening (which reminds me, I have to order some seeds soon!), I intend to make our own stewed tomato sauce. But for now, I simply purchase a bottle of basic plain organic tomato sauce and use this for all our tomato-based needs. With a bit of extra flavorings, I can have:

  • a smooth and garlicky pizza sauce (swirled with diced garlic, onions and a drizzle of olive oil)
  • a rich and delicious tomato-based soup (mixed with a little chicken broth and diced leftover vegetables and meats)
  • a chunky medium-spiced salsa (add cut up tomatoes and spices to suite your tastes)
  • a thick and hearty tomato sauce (thickened with a bit of cornstarch and water, and a few chunky mushrooms and cheese)
  • a delightful rose sauce (stirred into a lucious Alfredo sauce)
  • a mild tomato dip (combined with a bit of cream cheese, chives and spices)

If you find a basic tomato sauce you love, the possibilities are truly endless!

How do you dress up a basic tomato sauce? What other tips and tricks can you use to stretch a bottle out? Any recipes for your own homemade tomato sauce? Share it with us!

This post is part of Real Food Wednesdays at Kelly the Kitchen Kop and Works For Me Wednesday at We Are THAT Family.

March 30, 2011 at 7:30 AM Leave a comment

Farmer’s Market Find: Yellow Potatoes

Photo Credit: digiyesica

The following is an excerpt from today’s guest post on Frugal Granola.

“Without the potato, the balance of European power might never have tilted north.”
Michael Pollan

Can you guess how many different varieties of potato there are? 60, maybe? 240 perhaps? Possibly 483? Actually there are over 575 different types of potatoes. Wow!

However, all of these can be divided into roughly 6 categories: yellow, white, russet, red, fingerling, and blue. In this post of Farmer’s Market Finds, we are going to work on the yellow variety.

To read more, including my recipe for Creamy “Green” Mashed Potatoes, please check out the rest of my post!

March 29, 2011 at 7:30 AM Leave a comment

The Internet is Forever

Heart Broken

Photo Credit: kelsey_lovefusionphoto

Last week, someone shared a series of articles that I don’t think I could have ever written.  You can read them here and here.  I am not going to comment on the topic itself. That is for the individual reading them to decide on.  I chose not to judge on the topic itself.

What I do want to talk about is this: the internet is like skin — it absorbs everything you put out on it and once it’s there, it’s there forever.  No matter what you say or do, it will never come off.  The good, the bad, the funny, the cruel.  Forever and ever, amen.

The Internet is also a tool not used solely by those who are kindhearted.  Those with ill intentions have as much access to it as those with good intentions.  People send viruses, hate mail, blackmail, unpleasant documents and videos, and many other horrible things through the Internet.  When you put something out there that is unkind or unpleasant, that unpleasantness is there forever.  There is no taking it back.

Someday, a little girl will get an email from someone with ill intentions.  Someday, a little girl will read words that she will not understand because they were not meant for her to read at that time.  Someday a mother will have to try to explain to her daughter something that she cannot accept.  Someday, a rift will be torn forever that never had to be.  It is sad and it is heartbreaking.

Oh friends, please remember, the Internet is forever.  You must be so careful with what you say and do. Your friends, your family, your children, your reputation or your career can all be ruined by a single cruel message or inappropriate post. The Internet is one of our greatest resources in modern times.  Bit it is a hot coal and will singe you if you are not cautious.

If you are experiencing similar thoughts and feelings to the posts I mentioned above, please also read Michele Auger’s post here.  There are some excellent resources.

Does the eternity of the Internet bother you?  Are you more conscience of what you say and do?  Tell me what you think!

March 28, 2011 at 7:30 AM 1 comment

Menu Plan Monday: March 27 – April 2

We are enjoying a quiet, relaxing week this week — no errands or rushing around to be done (yet!). So we will be enjoying simple crockpot dishes and getting some delightful spring cleaning done.

Soups of the Week:  Chicken and Rice Soup, Corn Chowder

Breads of the Week:  Store-bought Sandwich Bread

Sunday:  Pizza

Monday:  Crockpot Beef Stew

Tuesday:  Crockpot Meatloaf

Wednesday:  Crockpot Pork Tenderloin with Gravy

Thursday:  Chicken with Shake & Bake

Friday:  Grilled Steak, French Fries, Steamed Veggies

Saturday:  Hamburger with Mashed Potatoes, Veggies

This post is part of Menu Plan Monday at I’m an Organizing Junkie.

March 27, 2011 at 7:30 AM Leave a comment

Link Love Round-Up, March 20-27

Photo Credit: jardinoMe

There has been some fascinating things come into my inbox this week! I love receiving emails from the various blogs. Some things are just so much fun to read. I try to stick with the best of the blogs, but occasionally I will publish two posts, when they are equally excellent. See what I found! Tell me which links you looked best!

Dreaming AloudThere’s a Shop In My Cupboard — Why Bulk Buying Makes Sense

MomopolyChrist’s Journey to the Cross: Lenten Inspiration for Mothers

Small Town SimplicityLiving Hope

Code Name: MamaAnimal Tail Tutorial

Upcycled LoveBuying Paper Books Vs the Kindle

Minimalist at HomeSing at the Top of Your Lungs

Natural Parenting NetworkToddlers and Bodily Exploration

Zen HabitsYour Emails Are Too Long

Amy’s Finer ThingsMake Your Own Vanilla Extract

Sorta CrunchyPondering the Countercultural Child

One Dress ProtestYoung Love: A Slow and Not-So-Fashionable-Yet Story

Simple Mom7 Principles to Simplify Your Family Life

Frugal GranolaSimple Parenting Tips to Help When I Just Don’t Love You

March 26, 2011 at 7:30 AM Leave a comment

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Greetings and Salutations!

miniMOMist is an account of Mike, Nada and Naomi's journey into realistic minimalism, with the goal centered around simple living, and enjoying each other rather than things. We are a faith-based family and blog about our belief in God regularly. Our love for one another and our passion for a simple, minimalist life brings us much joy and pleasure.

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