Baby Room in a Rental

So here is the finished product of my owlets room! The owners painted the place this beige colour, so I improvised with this colour and picked a Dark Chocolate Brown acrylic paint I found at Michaels, bought a circle sponge and an artist paint brush. My original colour plan was Grey-white walls, with a charcoal arrow pattern.


Here is the finished product. It cost $10.00 and took one nap to finish 🙂


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I found this design online, I think off pinterest. Its supposed to be different, not perfect, and I love it. I can post a picture of our finished room once we are done.


– Owl

Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos

I made these fish tacos last night for dinner. They were a huge success with every member of my pride:) I am do not eat carbohydrates after lunch so I had mine wrapped in lettuce leafs and it was absolutely amazing. So much flavor and freshness in every bite. My little lion cubs just gobbled them up. One loves carrots and the other loves wraps and they both adore fish of any kind. True cats!

Writing your testimony


“I grew up in a Christian home…” is always the first line of every testimony I heard in sunday school or camp. Now that I am 25, Married, a mother, finished College, worked, traveled a bit, and constantly changing my life and following God’s promptings, it is difficult to write my conversion in only a paragraph.

My husband and I are officially becoming members on Sunday at our Church. After attending for almost 3 years, we have decided to listen to God and take a step towards commitment in one Church. Since we got engaged, we always wanted to feel like we have a family outside of our actual blood related families, people to share life with, feel connected with outside of school. We attended and volunteered in all Church we have been apart of. Finally, my husband is completing his last couple weeks of College, and we both felt that it was time to dedicate our son as well as take the commitment of being apart of a community of believers officially.

So why am I writing a post about writing my testimony, well part of the membership is writing a paragraph or two about my conversion and relationship with Christ. I thought it was going to be easy, it was for my husband… I told him yesterday,” hey honey, we need to write out a brief testimony to say during the membership class and it will be in the bulletin as well”, he said ” okay.” literally 5 minutes later, he has a well written and thoughtful paragraph on his conversion and where God is in his life and leading him. BAH, usually we are the opposite,I am able to write as I think, so I am usually done writing papers and other things way faster than him.

So far, every time I write a paragraph, it doesn’t seem good. God has been apart of my life as far as I can remember. I guess my parents gave me great roots in my faith. Anytime a crisis occurred in my life,big or small, I always turned to God for help, or anytime something great happened, I always knew God had his hand in my life. My faith was and is the center of my life, in sports, acting, school, youth,work, friends and family. I seemed to want to tell everyone and anyone who would listen how great God is.  I loved sharing my faith, with my personality, it seemed I was placed in leadership roles quite often.  Even though  my life has not been easy, God has shown me that everything is temporary, accept Him. With this knowledge, I have strived to always be true to who God wants me to be, and to follow his promptings in my life. Whether to go and talk to someone who seems alone, or to ask hard questions to youth or friends. I want to be an honest person, which sometimes makes me more bold than people would want.

I am not sure this post is good to have for a bulletin or a formal testimony, but writing it has made me excited for what God has next for me. You never know what He will do next or who He will place in your life.


– Owl

Mom Cheats

I have read so many blogs and posts about 30 ways to make being a parent easier. Most I find one or two points to apply in my daily life and the rest i either don’t agree with or just plain ole forget, as soon as I leave the web page. After reading the ideas I tend to dwell on them and some times I even try and figure out what I would add to the list from my own experience. Well I have started making a list. So far in my two years of parenting I have come up with 9 points that make my life easier and I am not sure how original they are or even if they were my own ideas to start out with, but in either case, here they are:

1. Rice. Its a great food. Easy to make, simple, most children like it, fills their little bellies and goes with most meals. Worst part about it is how hard it is to clean up off their clothes, floors, and high chairs. I even found some rice in my daughters belly button and up her nose one time. Here is what I do. I leave it over night. I take of their clothes and leave them in the high chair, I leave the clothe that I wiped them down with in the high chair and I walk about from the mess on the floor. The next morning all the rice is dried and it is just falls off their clothes, sweeps up easily from the floor and wipes up off their high chairs without making me get on my hands and knees.

Now I do realize this does not work in many situations. Visiting the in laws would not make this plan very plausible. Nor would a family meal at a restaurant. But for those days when you barely made it through making dinner with two monkeys hanging off your legs and you fall asleep reading them their bed time stories and the last thing you want to do is clean up the dinner mess. Well, give yourself an excuse and just wait until the morning when everything is always better:)

2. Coffee Shop Treats. I love going for a walk and getting myself a delicious specialty coffee then heading to the park to drink it while my children play. Makes me happy and Makes them happy. The only problem is that it is starting to get harder and hard for my children to not want their own treat. I have brought my own snacks for them and given them that. But sometimes I am not as prepared as I should be. Instead of dealing with a tantrum, or even worse, opting to avoid the coffee shop all together. Here is my plan. Buy your child(ren) a steamed milk with a pump of some flavoring. (I bought the largest size and got 3 cups to split between the three children). Here is the best part. My local coffee shop is right beside our grocery store where they give out free cookies to children at the bakery. So…. Instead of paying for a snack for them at the coffee shop I go straight to the bakery. Most of the time I need something anyways from the grocery store, so I feel justified in collecting the cookie tax. On those gloriously amazing “dutch” days (I can say that because I am a dutch lion) we even fill our bellies with some free samples. With our snacks in hand, we pay for our eggs and we go enjoy the rest of the day at the park. 

3. Library Books on Tape. OK, I realize that this one is not new. It is not my own idea, it is not original, it is not even accurate as I don’t think that books come on “tape” anymore. I just do not remember the right words. I am sure you get my point if you are over the age of 20. I take out books on tape or even down load them onto my computer from the libraries web site. This is a great way to clean the house or entertain that child who is not yet ready to give up nap time and needs that quiet time. 

4. Water Play/Washing the floor. This one is my favorite. I hate washing my floor. I also hate making dinner with whining children all over me. So I decided it was time to solve both these problems at the same time. I fill pots and pans and bowls with water, measuring cups, spoons, and whisks and I strip my children down and put it all (including children) on the kitchen floor. Sometimes I even add soap to the water. I will lay it all on a old towel sometimes to help contain the mess. I get my cooking done and even set the table before they are bored of the game. Sometimes I will save “special” tools to give them when they start to loose interest and it brings them right back to their water play. At the end. I put their little naked selves into their chairs for dinner and put all the dishes in the sink. I then wipe up the floor with the towel that this amazing water mess was played on. I always have enough water on the floor to wash into every corner of my kitchen floor. It is fast, efficient, and tires them out so they work up a good appetite. You replace bib laundry with a towel since your children are now naked for dinner. In the long run I think this activity is worth it. Especially when you are feeling guilty for using the TV as a baby sitter and they are a little too old to be trapped in a play pen:)  

5.Veggie appetizers. Another way to distract those hungry vultures from hovering around the kitchen while you cook is to have a plate of pre-cut veggies that you bring out to fill their bellies. I only allow them to snack on veggies before dinner. I know a lot of people who do this one already but thought I would officially share it with the world. (here is hoping the world reads this blog post) My sons favorite is a big crunchy carrot. 

6. Tap Juice. This is MY mom’s trick. She called water “Tap Juice”. It worked wonders. They never had to whisper the words “juice” around us and we do not have to whisper it around our kids. 

7.Music Man. I am sure there are other moms who use this term as much as I do. The Popsicle truck is the Music Man. He drives around sharing his beautiful (read: annoying) music for us to enjoy (read: rip my ear drums out). 

8. Imaginations. Sometimes my children will not eat. I made a huge meal that took a long time and they wont eat it! I get so frustrated. So I started to use their imaginations against them 🙂 My son loves to play restaurant. He loves to take orders and exchange money for food. When my son pushes his plate away and says “My don’t want that” I put on my best french waiter voice and say “but Sir, I thought that is what your ordered?” Works like a charm. If restaurant play does not work I pretend we are at work on a construction site and it is lunch break. I use my gruffest voice I can come up with and so does he. He loves imaginary play and I use it as much as I can. If we all play along, my husband included, it works best.

9. Rewards. This in our home means another book at bed time or extra long bike ride, or mommy will play in the water table WITH you. It can always mean jelly beans or stickers. We do reward our children for going above and beyond their jobs. They do have a few things that they have to do that do not require them getting rewarded for but if they do more or help each other out or I catch them just being plain ole awesome with their friends or siblings. I reward them. I believe it is the things we do when we think no one is watching that show us truly who we are. So I want to reward the good behavior that I see in my children. We redirect and even punish the “wrong” behavior and highly praise and reward the “honorable” behavior. Most of the time my children are with in eye and ear shot and I can hear their constant conversations and see their actions. My house is designed amazing that way. Best of all they cant always see me. This lets them think they are alone and I get a lot of opportunities to discuss and reward notable conduct. Our goal in our house is to raise children who love people and God.

We want them to serve others with a gracious heart and respect people from all walks of life. This is a hard thing to implement in our day to day lives. Looking beyond the basic needs of our children is focusing on their character and hearts at an early age is something that my family takes seriously. 

Finding ways to Clean th
e Kitchen and making dinner without being hassled too much and finding ways to avoid tantrums is helpful in raising children and making life a little more enjoyable. Please, do not forget that you are raising little humans and not just trying to find ways to survive them. You are raising future teenagers and adults. I get told a lot to enjoy my children while they are still young and cuddly. Because as soon as they get older they want nothing to do with you. I am praying this is not true. I am praying that I have a relationship with my children that grows with them. That I don’t just dwell in the past but that I move on as well. I want to the mom that they need and deserve during all walks of their lives. With Gods help, I am praying that I know when to talk and when to listen. When to discipline and when to have Grace. It starts now. My Heart needs to change and I need to start growing before I end up having to chase them from behind. I am not just their mom. I am a fellow human being. I am a fellow Sinner and in need of the same Grace and Love that they do. For right now I have been given the responsibility, (as well as my husband) to raise them and instruct them and love them. Thank goodness I am not expected to do this alone. Thank goodness I have God, Family, Friends, and in some cases the internet. 

God bless your families and your journeys.


p.s please pass on any cheats you use in your daily life. You can never have too many!

10 Reasons Why Technology Isn't Bad for Kids

I found this blog post very interesting. I am not sure how much I will allow my son to watch tv (he is 7 months old ), but I have a lot of respect for someone when they research all the cites in the original article that technology is bad.

No, Strike That

There is a horrible article making the rounds right now from HuffPost written by the new self-appointed leader of the “Save the Children” crusade, Cris Rowan. And this time, she’s after our iPhones! Get the pitchforks Cleetus, we’re gonna have an angry mob!

I feel horrible for even doing this, because rule number 1 of the Internet is “Don’t Feed the Trolls”. Still, if you want to see what bad science looks like when it’s covered in citations you should go read this article (nostrikethat, 2014).

The short version (although it’s hard to summarize a listicle) is that “technology” is destroying the brains of our children and OH GOD WON’T SOMEONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN? Technology is defined as “cell phones, internet, iPads, TV”(The stupid article, 2014), which is good because I would hate to have to rip out my toilets. Lucky for the Nostrikethat household, Poop Vanishing Technology is exempt!


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Home Made Bathtub Crayons

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Well this Bath Tub Experiment took the longest prep and not the best results. Next time I will definitely get Crayon style molds to make it more fun to hold and draw. the ice cube tray molds worked well, but they were a little small and slippery for tiny hands to hold on to.

As for color. Colors turned out great and all I used was liquid food coloring.

Would I do it again? Maybe.
Did the kids like it? Yes! of course. who wouldn’t like drawing in the tub?

here is the link with the recipe I used. I did use food coloring instead of the dye they suggest.

Card board Box Dreams

Whenever we make a huge purchase of a product that comes in a big box, I always get my husband to try and salvage the box. My imagination starts whirling as I try and come up with new ideas of what to turn the box into.

This week we went to that Local amazing Furniture store where everything is in Swedish and purchased a little bookshelf. Of course, it came in a box. After assembling the bookself on my own I dragged the box into the play room and asked my children what we should do. My son has really been into boats and cars so his first response was a fire truck. If I agreed to this then it would be our 3rd firetruck box. I asked for another idea. Second place request was a Boat.! Yay, I could do a boat. I used my own imagination and turned it into a piarates ship. They had a blast adding the colour to our pirate ship and could not wait to jump in.

The amazing part about this box is, I was able to make dinner and empty the dishwasher all while not be interupted by my 1 and 2 year old. Seems like a miracle right? Well my friends, its the power of imagination and a little cardboard box!



Teething Teaching

I knew my children were going to be opposites when I found out I was having a girl during my second pregnancy. My son is his Fathers Mini Me with my personality. It turns out, I was right. My Daughter is my little mini me and the more we get to know her the more we see her dad. 

In every way possible raising a daughter has been different than raising a son. Her first birthday is around the corner and already we have yet to use a similar parenting technique with her. She approaches life and even growth milestones in a completely different way than her brother. The stages that stick out in my mind right now are No Soother, Sleep Training, Eating, and now, Teething!

Teething has taken over our lives at night. Last night we were all up. Even our two year old. While daddy and I switched off cuddles with crying and tired little lady, the other would lay in our bed with our son. During my turn in bed with little man he asked a question. “Why is baby crying so much?” I explained to him that it hurts when teeth are growing in our mouths and each one of us handles that pain differently. For example. When our son was teething he would maybe whimper a little more at night and might need some Tylenol before bed. He used a soother and would chew on it to help with teething. Since our little lioness does not take a soother we have to try different tricks. So far we are surviving on Tylenol, Advil, Teething Tablets and a lot of prayer. 

While daddy was comforting our daughter I took that opprotunity to teach our son about praying for others when they are hurt. It was 4 in the morning and my little man was reaching towards the heavens adn asking our Healing Father to give his little sister some “rest” and “ouchless sleep”. It brought tears to my eyes. 

As annoying as it is to get up all night long with a teething baby i would not have traded last night for anything. Not even sleep! Not even for a laundry free week or even a month! (maybe for a laundry and dishes free week, that would be amazing!!) Last night we got an opprotunity to share Jesus’ love with our son and our daughter all while practicing what it means to be a servant. We put the needs of our daughter ahead of our own needs and took a moment to teach our son about Gods love and how He Heals. 

God rewarded us without us even asking. Our daughter fell asleep (shortly after our sons prayer) My husband and son fell back asleep(which normally never happens) and we all slept in an hour past the time we normally start our day. 

Teething. Some nights are worse than others. Who knew that God could teach our family through hurting teeth and lack of sleep. My God sure lives out side of any box I try and put Him in. 



Painting in a rental

So all the main rooms in our new rental home are painted beige, which leaves me thinking, instead of painting all the walls, why not make an accent wall?I had seen online that its easy to find wallpaper that is not permanent,(, that seemed a little too tedious for me. So I have decided to try painting accent walls with designs instead of painting each room.


I like the idea of triangles in the living room. We don’t have a fireplace, so I thought it would be a good idea to make a focal point wall. What do you think?

I found these cute stickers on Etsy that I would like to freehand for our sons room.


These are some of my ideas to make a rental feel like home.

– Owl

Renting For Life


In the last 6+ years, I have moved 10 times. I have either lived with family members, apartment with friends, basement suites with my husband. Now we are moving up in the renting world. We will be renting a house! We are extremely excited to start a new chapter. Renting an older house comes with some awesome fixtures and best of all, PINK BATHTUB!(unsure if i am excited, or joking) We seem to have a pretty good deal on this property.Apart from the reasonable rent, as we speak, the landlord is putting new flooring and painting the main rooms. The DIY is going to be less than expected. We are super excited to be able to host, be at a location of convenience, and potentially help someone else in need, instead of it always being us who needs the help. We move in the last weekend of March.So get ready page, for all my fun tricks for renting a space and making it your home. This is something I have had a lot of experience with, moving in and decorating to make it feel like a home you want to hang out in, something that is trendy but usable. This will be the first space that I wont have to be conscientious of space. It’s around 2000 square feet, instead of cramming 5 people in a 2 bedroom 1000 square foot apartment, its the three of us in a 4 bedroom house!

– Owl