Happy Birthday to my Queen!

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(This is Sean writing. 🙂 Caroline doesn’t know it, but I’m posting this in honor of her birthday today. Surprise honey!!)

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Today is my wife’s 33rd birthday. She’s amazing. So amazing that she deserves (at the very least) the blog post that follows. Really she needs her own book. Maybe someday . . .

I met Caroline when she looked decidedly different than she does today. She, along with her dear mother and sister, wore a lot of calico jumpers back then and as the saying goes, she stuck out like a sore thumb. That’s no insult, it’s just that when I first saw her at a college scripture study I began attending in the early 2000’s, my first thoughts of her could be summed up with the word ‘weird’.

And that was just about the only thoughts I had of her. For an entire semester I don’t believe we ever spoke to each other. The only time I saw her was in the midst of a class when a quick scan of the room would find her sitting well composed beside her sister, the two of them the very model of meekness and, uh, weirdness (or so I thought at the time). “Who are they and why do they dress that way? Why are they so quiet, so “shamefaced” all of the time? They seem so up tight. I’m not sure I’ll have enough time tonight to finish my history paper…” and my mind was quickly off to other things. I had no interest in pursuing such questions further.

That is, until the following semester when I had an experience that would change my life forever. I arrived at a study in a bit of a rush to direct a guest I had invited to the group they were assigned to. As I entered the room, I noticed Caroline out of the corner of my eye (though I don’t believe I even knew her name at the time) sitting quietly to herself. I briefly turned my head to look at her as I continued crossing the room and I had this thought impressed upon me so clearly – “That is the sort of woman you should marry.” It was so strong that the words might as well have been spoken aloud.

It’s difficult to describe the feelings I had at this point. Our scripture study took place in a humble little repurposed store front that I believe was the only building on the street that wasn’t a bar. The front room was large and open and along all the walls were a myriad of mismatched couches and chairs that belonged in (or probably came from, many of them) a thrift store; but the chair that Caroline sat in on this occasion might as well had been a throne and the room her palace.

As I look back on this, I would not be surprised if the thought that was intended for my mind was, “She is the woman you should marry.” What I heard, however, was, “(That) is the (sort of) woman you should marry.” Why? Because in that moment I felt terribly unworthy of her. She was an unreachable goal and an unattainable prize. In that moment I somehow knew that she was far and away better than my best hopes and desires of what my wife should be. Frankly, I didn’t really know what I should be looking for in a companion. In a fleeting moment – in a twinkling – God showed me that everything I should be looking for was wrapped up in her.

If I am completely honest here, and I mean this with all my heart, I still feel very unworthy of her. After this experience I set myself to the long, sometimes humorous, task of winning her heart. It was a clumsy effort, but I was quite determined and I consider it one of the greatest honors of my life that she eventually came to accept mine as the hand that she would clasp in marriage. There was not another, to my heart, so pure, so faithful, and so lovely as she and nearly 14 years later, absolutely nothing has changed. She still sits, beautifully arrayed, as the queen in the throne room of my heart.

Happy birthday my love.

Giveaway Winners!

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We had such a long list of winners from the Facebook Party Giveaway that I decided to just share the list of winners here!

The winner of the Bosch Mixer – Tammy Cordery
The Winner of the Kindle Fire – Sarah
The Winner of the L’BRI cleanser– Melody Carpenter
The Winer of the Beauty Redeemed $60 gift certificate- Robin Kuhl
(You can save 10% through May 30th at Beauty Redeemed with the code deborahandco)

Enter to win a Beauty Redeemed doll!

The winner of the $50 gift certificate to Thirty One – Emily

Just released! Homemaking 201 DVD for encouragement to the wife, mother and homemaker!

The winner of the Homemaking 101 and 201 DVD’s– Jennifer Freeman
The Winner of the Young Living giveaway – Erin Slocum

Congratulations everyone! I have emailed each person notifying them they won.



Easy Haircare Products For The Busy Mom!

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Easy Haircare Products for the Busy Mom! #Beautybyme #ad

This post was sponsored by Suave Professionals®, however, the text and opinions are all my own.

As a mom just finishing up a very long pregnancy, I know how precious time is. The last thing I want to worry about is haircare products when I’m trying to keep food on the table and keep my house in order.

I’ve written before about how I like using natural shampoos. I have two different brands that I tend to go back and forth using. But when life gets crazy busy and I need a good standby shampoo and conditioner to fall back on, I use the products I used all through high school.

Good old Suave Professionals.

Yes, the super affordable haircare line that has been around for years. Except I’ve seen a lot of good change in their products since I used them 12+ years ago.

I think Suave has picked up on the fact that a lot of people are wanting more natural products, low sulfate, or even no sulfate haircare products, and they have responded to that demand! I keep a natural, sulfate free Suave shampoo in my shower to use, and honestly, it works just as good as the more expensive shampoo I normally use.

Suave® Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion products

Suave recently came out with a new product line, and it couldn’t have come in the mail at a better time. I was literally out of shampoo and conditioner, but I knew that I was getting a package from Suave so I didn’t panic and run to the store. : )

The new Suave Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Hair and Body products have been a standby for this busy mom. I like that the Suave Professionals® Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Buoyant Body Shampoo and Conditioner are low in sulfates, as my hair looks the best using low sulfate products.

They’re infused with a carefully chosen blend of rich minerals from the sea, which makes for a totally different hair product line than I’ve ever tried before.

The smell of the shampoo and conditioner is really nice – luxurious even! I’m sensitive to strong smells but didn’t have any trouble with the “sea inspired” fragrance they use.

Suave Pro Sea Mineral Infusion Shampoo  #BeautyByMe #ad

Right now if I get a shower in I’m doing great. Taking a shower every day? That isn’t happening around here! I’m doing good to grab a shower every third day. 🙂

I definitely need some products that will make my hair stay clean for several days, and also keep some volume and moisture in my hair. The new Suave Professionals® Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Buoyant Body Shampoo provides hair with 24-hour body and moisture that makes it really easy to style.

After I started using this shampoo I noticed a difference in how my hair responded to going three days without being washed. It really didn’t even look dirty or greasy! Styling my hair on the first day, or even the third was easy. Sometimes my hair is so slippery on the first day of washing it that I don’t even try to do anything. I didn’t have this problem using the Suave Professionals® Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Buoyant Body Shampoo.

Everyday hair style for busy moms using  Suave Pro Sea Mineral Infusion Shampoo.  #BeautyByMe #ad

An easy, everyday hairstyle I’ve been doing often! I can easily pull my bangs back, and use a flexi clip to pull my hair back.

Flexi Clip for easy ponytail look!

The Suave Professionals® Sea Mineral Infusion Moisturizing Buoyant Body Shampoo and Conditioner does not contain heavy silicones and helps remove build up from hair. These are all things I look for in a shampoo, so I’m pleased that Suave Professionals is putting out these products!

The Suave® Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion Body Lotion is infused with dead sea minerals, and I really enjoyed using this at the end of my pregnancy to rub on my legs and feet. They would get so swollen and sore, and it was a soothing lotion to use.

Suave Body Lotion

Overall I am really pleased with the products I tried, and I’m sure I will be purchasing more Suave Professionals products in the future! You can use the Suave Product Locator to find a store that is close to you, or you can purchase the products on Amazon , Walmart, Walgreens, or at Target!

Discover the Beauty of the Sea with NEW Suave® Professionals Sea Mineral Infusion products.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Suave Professionals ®. The opinions and text are all mine.

DIY Christmas Gift Ideas

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DIY Gift Ideas for Children
With five children ages 11 and under, it’s easy to just add more clutter to our small house every holiday season. This year I’m determined to purchase things I know for sure my children will use, and also craft them some special, unique items you can’t find on the department store shelves! Here are some of my favorite ideas of some easy DIY gift ideas!


Stackapals are mix and match wooden block sets that have 6 boys and 6 girls, and they are really easy to make! Just purchase the printable PDF file (there’s a boys set and a girls set), grab some wooden blocks and mod podge and craft some gifts for the children in your life! This is a simple, wholesome little toy that you can feel good about giving. Bonus Feature – Stackapals don’t make noise and they don’t require batteries! Lol! You can get 20% off any Stackapals set through the end of November with the code: BLOCKSET at the checkout! 

How To Make Homemade Playdough {Plus Free Printable Labels!}

Make homemade play-dough and give in cute containers! You can find a recipe and download our free printable labels here. This is a super frugal gift that does not take much time. If you wanted to add a little more to the gift you could find some cookie cutters, a little rolling pin, or actual play dough toys and bundle them with the play-dough.


This is a really neat idea if you have extra legos lying around! Create a portable lego kit for your lego lovers so they can bring them along on trips! This doesn’t look too hard!

Baby doll diapers and wipes!

If you can sew, this is an adorable gift for little girls! Make them little cloth diapers and wipes for their dolls, using this free pattern! It’s ok to play with them too (you know you’ll want to).

Build a Fort Kit!

 Make a fort building kit for children of various ages! My boys would love this!

Paper Dolls Magnetic Tin

I definitely want to try making some of these magnetic tin paper doll sets for my girls! You could use any paper dolls you want and follow these instructions! There are some sweet vintage paper dolls you can print for free here. I’m planning on using these beautiful historical paper dolls for my girls.

Toddler Sewing Basket

Put together a toddler’s sewing basket kit!

I hope these have given you some ideas, and you can find more on my gift board on Pinterest!

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