Cyber Monday Gratitude GIVEAWAY!!!!!


How’s everyone’s Cyber Monday going? Ours was great. We did no shopping, but I did go to my cardio aqua-therapy class!!  So fun and invigorating!

This giveaway is for two packs of fill-in-the-blank notes from Lil’ Miss Gratitude!!  One of your packs will be thank-yous, and the other pack will either be birthday cards or “Hello” cards.

The front of the cards come blank so your kids color the front, or you can also send them out uncolored! These are appropriate for ALL AGES of kids.

I colored this one!

No more tears! A solution for kids' thank you notes

My boys colored this one. Creative.

These are an awesome way to get your kids expressing gratitude, brightening someone else’s day, and all without the whining and fussing.

Here’s a sample of a completed card:

Sample of a “hello” card that we used as a thank you note.

Joshua needed to write about 12 thank you notes after his birthday party, and when he saw these fill-in-the-blank cards, he was so relieved, he ACTUALLY SAID, “Oh, phew. Thank you, Mom. Thank you so much for these. This makes it so much easier.”

Click here to learn more about Lil’ Miss Gratitude!


Giveaway rules! TWO simple ways to enter the giveaway this time.

1.) Subscribe to my newsletter. I have one going out this week! Already subscribed? No problem. That also counts. No need to subscribe again. Just click on the giveaway form below.


2.) Visit Lil’ Miss Gratitude on Facebook, and  give her a “Like.” 

OR You could also do BOTH and get double entries.

I wish you could all win! Merry Christmas!!!!

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Do your kids love writing thank you notes???…..So here’s a solution.


No more tears! A solution for kids' thank you notes

Our family has never been known for our stellar thank-you note etiquette. Instead, thank you notes typically make my boys want to actually return their presents.

“Skylanders, YES!!!!!”

“THANK YOU NOTES??? Oh, um, oh, uh. Moaaaannnnnn….Groannnnn….”

Look, it’s not that they are ungrateful. They SAID thank-you 100 times, jumped up and down, and gave the giver a hug. We are thankful, okay. But sitting down in an actual chair and WRITING out thank you notes??? Apparently some people don’t love that idea.

And many of you know that even after they write them their mother may lose them, forget to mail them, or stick them into a drawer and find and mail them a year later.

Not me, of course. Ahem. Never, no. I’m just so organized and careful. That would never happen to me…. (Ha!!!!! Right.)

But we do want to do the right thing and teach our children to show gratitude to others. We’ve been blessed so much.

The Solution

So Lil’ Miss Gratitude, over at….well… invented something that’s pretty awesome. This is what I used for my son’s birthday this year. He took one look at how it was basically already written and all he has to do is fill in the blanks, and he calmed down.

“Oh. I just fill in these blanks?
“Yep. So easy.”

“OKay. Sure. Do you have more of these? Because I got a LOT of presents.”

“No, but I have some “Hello” cards with blanks too. You could make those work for thank you notes.”
“Let me see. Yeah, okay, I got it. THANKS, MOM! Thank you so much. Phew.”

And look how cute:

I actually colored this one myself. It was fun.

No more tears! A solution for kids' thank you notes

a filled in “thank you” note

He’s too cool to color them, of course, so we sent some out uncolored, and I colored some of the others.

My son also decided that his friends don’t want thank-you notes, so he only delivered them to his grandparents and aunts and uncles. Well, all right, this is me we are talking about. He wrote them 2 weeks ago, and they are sitting right beside me because I can’t remember anyone’s exact address, and I haven’t found the time to look them all up.  Hey, I may be a slacker mail handler, but at least I got him to write the notes! Right?

I love Laura’s slogan for these cards: “We said thank you notes; they heard root canal.”

So if this sounds like a story you can relate to, here’s where you can order your own. I can’t recommend these highly enough:

Go here to order them.



Believe it or not, this is not a sponsored post, but these fabulous products were provided by Lil’ Miss Gratitude.  Check them out! 





Thankfulness in Photos


I love Thanksgiving. Today I am thanking my Heavenly Father for all the blessings he has bestowed upon us this year–this wild and crazy year! 2014 was EXCITING. It has been a challenge, full of change, and full of learning.

And I am thankful for it.


I am thankful that I have the kind of husband that helps coach everything my boys are involved in. Thank you, Alan!

Caleb, driving Grandaddy's scooter, pulling the 'train'.

Caleb, driving Grandaddy’s scooter, pulling the ‘train’.

I’m thankful my dad is such a FUN Granddaddy. Having a scooter hasn’t slowed him down at all. As Caleb would say, “Granddaddy, you’re just as crazy as ever,” as Caleb grins from ear to ear.


thankful for puddles


20140303_145827 thankful for drawing

snow Angelsthankful for snow angels–and so thankful we got to live in a place where you get to make them!!  Thank you, Lord!

20140306_130927 thankful for this



thankful for my label maker and pretty jewelry

IMG_2471 thankful for handed-down matching outfits


IMG_2477 thankful for family watermelon nights



thankful that I took the time to get organized


DCthree  So thankful I got to share D.C. with all four of my children!ArlingtonJoshCalebme


thankful for consignment sales




thankful for oodles and oodles of toys

and baby smiles


thankful for Caleb


thankful for that weekend we got to spend with Alan’s grandparents while we weaned JD


so thankful for the people that cut the boys’ hair


snowboardJosh thankful for snowboarding



bowlingDan and bowling


cupcakeDAn thankful for cupcakes


thankful for the friends of my children

thewinningbuddies thankful for Joshua and for his victories


thankful for Nonna and for baby bottles


for Easter baskets


thankful for my mom and dad

handskneesJD thankful for first times


ReflectingBrosDC for brothers


IMG_3152 for Dan and for stickers


IMG_3205 for Radio Flyer wagons and azaleas


mother'sday Thankful for Mother’s Day and for four sweet little boys



for backyard sports in the spring


and for friends

Boys of Summer_05202014 thankful for fun in the sun



and for wrestling


and moving companies, so we don’t have to pack our                                                                                                  own junk


and photo albums

IMG_3401 thankful for Alabama football familyphoto for family


for that amazing road trip I got to take with my husbandIMG_3621_Fotor

for Alan


for getting to see all of this


for beautiful sunsets

IMG_3849_Fotor IMG_3825_Fotor

for our 3rd honeymoon and for my parents watching the boys for us to do this

IMG_3900_Fotor IMG_3921_Fotor IMG_4048 for DaddyO and his fashion


for relatives and crazy game nights



Centers for home school

thankful for getting to home school

I love going to Point Lobos State Park. You are always guaranteed to find sea lions.

I love going to Point Lobos State Park. You are always guaranteed to find sea lions.

for the ability to laugh at myself for calling all those seals sea lions–Yes, those are actually seals.


and so is he


otter close up

Not him. That’s an otter.

humpback whale

team sea lion thankful for Point Lobos


sea lion her don't blink

thankful for getting to watch herds of actual sea lions and whales, with Alan, Joshua, and Caleb



thankful for silly times

alankayaking_Fotor thankful for kayaking with the love of my life– I have never appreciated Alan as much as I have this year. I love you, Alan! Thank you so much for your support!


thankful to live in California, even if just for a little while

But isn’t everything really just for a little while?

My DaddyO lets me have fun.

My DaddyO lets me have fun.

thankful for J.D. and for getting to share their childhood

thankful that this is my life

thankful for my blog, and more importantly, all of the people that read it. Thank you for reading my blog!!!

I’m thankful that God in Heaven listened to the questions of a little girl, just 4 years old, when she asked, “But who is this God?” I’m thankful that he sent me the people I needed to meet, kept me from harm, led my whole family to know Him, and always loved me in spite of all of the horrible things that I have done. I’m thankful that he taught me of His love.


1 John Chapter 4

8 He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.

9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through him.

10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son [to be] the propitiation for our sins.


What are you thankful for today?



Thank you!