appreciating the gift of parenthood

Appreciating the Gift of Parenthood


They say the days are long, but the years are short.

How true this is.

I often think one of my biggest failings in motherhood is that I rarely take the time to pause and reflect. Months pass without me even stopping to consider what has changed. Or appreciate what has remained.


It’s been 40 months since she crashed into our world and made us parents.

She is my enthusiastic, contemplative, sensitive-hearted baby girl.

Lily Playing Trick-or-Treat

I love the way her eyes dance wildly when she looks at me. As if each moment we spend together were a riotous thrill.  She has grown and changed so much over the last three years, but that gaze has remained constant.  I love how it reminds me of the baby she was. read more

the newest way to declutter: swedish death cleaning

The newest way to declutter_ Swedish Death Cleaning

Note: This site contains affiliate links. For more information, please read the Amazon Associates disclosure in the sidebar to the right.

If you haven’t heard, the new decluttering trend these days sure is a cheerful one:

Swedish death cleaning. 

Pleasant, isn’t it?

Being the decluttering freak expert that I am, I had to look into it. I started with a web search and also read the book The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning: How to Free Yourself and Your Family from a Lifetime of Clutter. read more

how to keep your home spotless with kids ;)

Joy and Simplicity | How to keep your home spotless with kids

I’ve scoured the internet for ways to keep my home cleaner. I keep coming back to the analogy that cleaning a home with kids is like brushing your teeth while eating Oreos. But after much trial and error, I think I’ve come up with a surefire plan to help us moms keep our homes spotless.

How to Keep Your Home Spotless with Kids

#1 – Always clean up one toy before moving on to another. If the kids can’t manage this, they probably don’t need toys.

keep home spotless with kids | Joy and Simplicity

#2 – Limit your toy collection to 1-2 per child. Less is more, right? Oh, and try to avoid toys with a lot of pieces. (I’m looking at you, blocks.) read more

4 categories for minimalist gift-giving

4 categories for minimalist gift-giving

Note: This site contains affiliate links. For more information, please review the Amazon Associates disclosure in the sidebar to the right.

There’s something about the Christmas season that drives me crazy. Don’t get me wrong — there are aspects I enjoy with all my heart, like spending time with family, indulging in too much junk, and pausing to feel the joy of Christ in my life.  But, I always seem to get wrapped up in consumerism way more than I would like.

When it comes to avoiding over-consumerism, last year was one of the best Christmases I’ve had.  It was sweet and simple, thanks to a new rule we’ve adopted. read more

top 10 hygge-inspired gift ideas

top 10 hygge inspired gift ideas | Joy and Simplicity

We’re almost halfway through November.

(I’ll pause for a moment to let that settle in.)

Soon we’ll find ourselves in the bustling Christmas season. And while it’s easy to get caught up in the busyness, I think it’s important to remember that this is a season for us to really be present with each other and *enjoy* the moments we have together.

One of my favorite ways to do this is by encouraging loved ones to pursue a slower and more intentional lifestyle through the gifts we give. This year, I anticipate many of our gifts having a theme of minimalism and hygge. read more

how to mom like a boss: 12 tips from the office

We moms have a lot going on.  Every day is a balancing act.

We juggle our little ones’ needs and nap schedules, the endless tasks of running a home (cleaning, laundry, dishes, errands), and hopefully leave some space for ourselves (exercise, showering, or even just eating).  On top of this, some moms even add office work to the mix.

Like many other moms out there, I worked in a business setting for several years before having my first child.  While the work of mothering is vastly different, I’ve found that applying some of the project management skills from my old jobs has helped me in the home. read more

9 konmari tidying tips you need to know

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of Marie Kondo’s book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing.  If you haven’t read it, it’s one of a handful of books I completely recommend.  Especially if your home is in need of some order.

Top 9 Konmari Tidying Tips You Need to Know

Note: This site contains affiliate links. 

Top 9 Konmari Tidying Tips You Need to Know

Here are my top 9 tidying tips from the Konmari method:

1. Start with a vision. And realize that your home doesn’t need to look Pinterest-perfect to bring you joy. Instead, consider how you want your home and life to look. For example, I desired a home that felt clean, airy, and uncluttered.  I also wanted to pursue a more minimalistic lifestyle. My son’s nursery encompasses this perfectly for me. read more

6 ways to adopt hygge into your life this season

Joy and Simplicity | 6 ways to adopt hygge into your life this season

Is anyone else as excited for autumn as I am?  We’ve been experiencing a bit of a heat wave lately, but the nights and mornings have been cooling down beautifully.  With the crisp air and the shorter days, I can’t help but think ahead to the holidays. This is already such a sweet and special season, but I plan to relish in it even more with a little bit of hygge.

What is hygge?

Perhaps you’ve been living under a rock (or raising little ones — same thing) and haven’t heard the term. read more

las vegas | prayers in the aftermath

My heart is broken and I am sickened. Another horrific act of senseless violence.

Embed from Getty Images

I’m shocked.

And yet, I’m not. Because this just keeps happening, doesn’t it? Our world seems to be growing more volatile by the day. read more

why the best marriages have irreconcilable differences

Why the Best Marriages have Irreconcilable Differences

It’s 7:55pm. I’ve just put the baby down for what I hope will be the night, while Grant tucks Lily in. I’m indulging in a cup of tea after a rather uninspiring week.

I open the cupboard and smile to myself at the label on the box of tea.

example of differences in marriage

My husband.

husband irreconcilable differences

A few months ago, we got Lily an activity book, boasting more than 100 stickers.  (Yay ~ more to pick up off the floor!)

Some of those stickers were labels, meant for older kids to apply to the corresponding image.

Well, since Lily was too young to read (or to really care about labeling at all), my husband found a better use for them. read more