Resolutions for 2014; A Link Up!

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy 2014 Everyone!

Follow your host (ME!) and link up your post! It really is that simple. I thought it would be great to start off the new year by sharing our resolutions {or goals} for 2014 with all of our blogging friends. I always think that if I put them out there then I am more compelled to actually stick to them or try and complete them.

I tend to like GOALS better than resolutions because I feel like resolutions mean that you are "giving something up" or starting something right then on the 1st. These are things that I want to work on throughout the year so I am calling them goals.

  • Read 10 Books- Last year I set a goal for myself to read 12 books {1 book a month} and I did not complete my goal. I started out well but things got really busy. So, I need to lower the goal and try really hard to hit this one. I must say I would't mind blowing this one out of the water!
  • Become More Organized- I need to be organized in the way that I plan my life. My planner will help me with this. Now that I will be at a new practice and balancing that with all the other parts of my life I really need to have everything written down in one place.
  • Take my Blog in a Focused, Forward Direction- I have started working towards this goal already. I purchased and started taking the Content Brew course offered from MomComm. Loving it!
  • {Sort of along the same lines} Execute and Follow my Editorial Calendar
  • Build my patient base at the practice that I am joining- I need to build patients that are MY patients who call and specifically request to see me. I am a fabulous provider so I know that I can do this. Bring it on!
  • Protect Myself Emotionally- Try to do things for me. I need to be more emotionally/spiritually stable. Infertility has taken so much from me but I cannot change that. All that I can do is live my life around who I am now. So if something is just too hard then I just can't do it. I must stop pushing myself into doing things for others that really really hurt me. I can't continue to suffer in silence.

    That is it folks!


Top Posts of 2013

It is both fun and interesting to look back at what my most viewed posts of 2013 were. It seems that in the past year the things that were viewed most were posts that caught a lot of attention on Pinterest. Pinterest is an awesome phenomenon that has afforded me many new readers and also helped me find many great recipes, crafts and more. In the coming year I hope to create some awesome content that is just as popular as my crafts and recipes!

#1:  Foster's Lorax Party: The Toddler Table & Treat Buffet- This was probably one of my favorite posts this year as well. There are tons of pictures and this showed off all of the really hard work that I put into Foster's 2nd birthday party. These pictures have spread all over Pinterest and have even been seen popping up on the "popular pins" page. 
#2: Foster's Lorax Party: The Front Door & Entryway- Another post with party pictures from Foster's 2nd birthday. This featured pictures of the decor from the entryway and front door. Can you tell I love to throw birthday parties?!
#3: World's Best Creamy Chicken Enchiladas- The title really says it all with this one. I really assume that it was the third most popular post because they are so insanely good. These are addicting to say the least. I am betting that most people who tried these have been back for the recipe more than once!
#4: Crafty Practitioner's Cornbread Casserole- This is one of my favorite dishes. The family requests that I make it for all holidays. This year I made it for Thanksgiving and for Christmas Eve dinner with my parents and father-in-law. It is definitely a crowd pleaser!
#5: Gooey Cheesy Potatoes- I almost forgot about this recipe! Now seeing it on my top list, and at number 5, I think I need to make it again ASAP! Yummy!!!
#6: DIY Halloween Tulle Wreath- This was a fun and easy craft! This was another one that went viral on Pinterest. I wish I would have taken a picture after it rested for a couple days because the material settled and it looked awesome. I recommend this for a great fall/halloween wreath!
#7: Foster's Lorax Party: Additional Decor & The Backyard- Again, pictures and decor from Foster's birthday party. Can you tell it was a hit? On the same note, can you tell i'm psycho about parties? haha.
#8: Marvelous Mondays (#58): Slowcooker Garlic & Brown Sugar Chicken- This was a link up that I participated in by posting a slow cooker recipe that I love! If there is one thing that my husband would tell you about my cooking in 2013 it would be that I fell deeply in love with my crock-pot.... DEEPLY in love.
#9: Slowcooker BBQ Ribs- Another slow cooker recipe. This makes the most tender ribs! These fall off the bone and have tons of flavor. I love the smell that fills my house when I am making them. Rib lover right here!
#10: Tasty Tuesday: Baked Spasagna- Yum, yum, yum. I am what I like to call "Italian by marriage" so this is heaven on a plate for me. I think this would be a kiddo-pleaser too as long as you don't have my kid who refuses to eat pasta, weirdo!

Don't forget to come back and link up tomorrow for my New Years Resolution Link Up!!

Must Have Monday and a Link Up Event Announcement!

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Welcome back, I know that Mondays are everyone's least favorite day and this one might be one of the worst because many people have to return to work after a nice long break. Hopefully this fun link up can brighten your work day a bit if that is the case for you.

First I would love if you followed me on twitter @TheCraftyPBlog
& Like my fan Facebook Page

On wednesday, January 1st, that is insane to me. I am going to have a special one time link up for the new year! Mark your calendars, put an alert in your phone, write on your hand {like in middle school, haha} but whatever you do make sure you remember to come back here and grab this button and link up with me to share your New years Resolutions for 2014!

The Crafty Practitioner

On to my must haves. Is it sad that I have things I want right after the holiday? I actually didn't get too many actual items for christmas. I got a couple practical items and a couple gift cards {that I haven't used yet}. Now that I have a son I really worry more about telling people what he wants and making sure that he has a good holiday. Justin and I no longer shop for each other either. Perhaps in the future, when we are more financially sound, we will go back to buying for each other.

The Crafty Practitioner
So here are the things I am considering getting in the next few weeks:

I am needing some new chapsticks because my lips are chapped!!! The winter has been doing a number on them and I have heard fantastic things about the FRESH brand Sugar lip treatment.
I am not actually considering buying this, but I wish that I was. It is the Erin Satchel from Fossil, but costs nearly a whopping 300 bucks.
The expansion packs for our Cards Against Humanity game. This game is our instant favorite and you make have read my post about it HERE.

Sunday Social- 12/29

First I wanted to ask that you please follow me on Bloglovin or GFC: Follow on Bloglovin
Also like my Facebook Fan Page!

Happy Sunday! I am excited for a Baby Shower that I am going to today for a friend that just adopted a baby boy earlier this month. She is beyond deserving of being a mother and Hudson is incredibly lucky to have such fabulous parents. This will be a great celebration!
Sunday Social
1. What is the best New Years Eve you’ve ever had? Honestly, I have a horrible memory and I cannot think of many. Probably one where we went downtown and got a hotel room and went out to bars all night with friends!

2. Are you doing anything for NYE this year and if so what? I am not sure yet. Still trying to decide if we want to do anything or not. {Does that make me sound old or what?}

3. Name a book we should all read come January? I am planning to read the final Hunger Games book since I just saw the second hunger games movie and it lit a fire under my butt to get it read =)

4. What are your new years resolutions? I cannot share them yet!!! I am hosting a link up here on my page on January 1st though so remember to come back and link up on wednesday with your New Years Resolutions! Doesn't everyone love a fun festive link up for a holiday?

Christmas through my child's eyes! {Our 1st Xmas celebration this year}

Saturday, December 28, 2013

The presents and watching Polar Express on Xmas Eve.
Our first Christmas morning celebration took place on December 24th. Foster hasn't really grasped the full concept Santa yet. He knew that presents were coming and he recognizes Santa when we sees him in pictures and movies but the idea that he watches to see if kids are good and travels and delivers presents has not been grasped yet.
Santa came!!!
The morning started with Foster waking up and the three of us putting on our matching family pajamas!  I got them from Gymboree and I was so excited when I saw that they were having coordinating family jammies this year. Mommy carried him down the stairs and as he saw his big present from Santa he said "WOW!!!".
 He was so excited to sit in his UTV and kept trying to tell us to get in there and sit with him. This is going to be a big hit for a long time.


Family Matching Jammies!

Miss Bella joined us and we had a full family picture!

Opening a present with Papa Chesnut.

Checking out his Toy Story figures. These have been a big hit so far.

Getting some help from Daddy.

With Papa & Grandma Chesnut

Despicable Me 2, yay!

Opening his truck with Papa Daniel!

A train set!!!! Can't wait!

Playing "monners" with Grandma Chesnut.

Our Christmas Schedule and Decorating Cookies!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Now that I am married it is much more complicated to figure out holidays. Maybe I am just not used to having to choose which/what family we are going to see on certain holidays because we never had to do that when I was young?! I grew up with just my parents and I. All of our family was spread out across the country so we didn't get to spend many holidays with them. 

Justin and I have always had a hard time trying to figure out who to spend our holidays with and how to make it around to both of our families on these important days. Now that we are parents and have a little prince that everyone likes to see it makes it even harder. This year Justin's parents {my in-laws} separated and filed for divorce. So this added another twist to the plan.

Our holidays schedule was hectic but fantastic all the same:
Monday (12/23): Have my parents and Justin's dad over for a fancy "Christmas Eve" dinner and evening. Then they would all stay over in our guest rooms.
Tuesday (12/24): Wake up and have "Christmas Morning" with my parents and Justin's dad. Around 1pm we would leave to go out of town to Justin's grandmother's house where his mom's family ALWAYS has Christmas. That night his aunt & uncle host a huge Christmas Eve dinner and party, traditional old italian catholic style {read: shrimp,fish, food, food, more food, dessert, and drinking!… oh and about 50 people}
Wednesday (12/25): Christmas morning with Justin's grandma, mom, and aunt. Then the rest of the family comes over to Grandma's for dinner of handmade ravioli, homemade pasta sauce, and all the fixings. We then have Christmas with all of that family after dinner.

One of the things that was on The Daniel Family Christmas Bucket List was decorating christmas cookies.  On Monday late afternoon we decorated cookies for Santa with my mom while we were cooking dinner. Foster got a kick out of it and it was so fun to see him do this for the first time! The cookies that he decorated ended up with so many sprinkles on them. For real.