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Bachelorette Party Ideas

Posted by Live Love Mom on October 23, 2020 at 8:15 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Rev Dr Stéphanie McEndree




Unsure of what to do for your bachelorette party? Here are some cost-effective ideas for every kind of bride.


 

Rent a house. AirBnB offers whole houses to yourself, and for just a few hundred dollars you can have a luxury spot to celebrate your bachelorette party! Look for places that have all the ammenities you’re looking for; pool, fireplace, air conditioning, or whatever else you have in mind.


 

Book a hotel room. Not only is this practical for out-of-town guests or a party the night before the wedding (since you’ll already know where you’re staying), but you’re sure the venue will make some great pictures, and you won’t need to worry about cleaning up. Whether you’re looking for a motel room or a lavish 5-star hotel with a view, choose your hotel room accordingly. Lots of hotels also have indoor pools, gyms, restaurants and even spas.


 

Sleepover. Gather the girls for an old-fashioned sleepover with snacks, movies, even face masks, hair braiding and nail painting. Talk about boys, read gossip magazines, and play some old-fashioned board games. 


 

Bed & Breakfast. Stay at a local bed and breakfast and wake up to brunch with your lady friends. Relax and enjoy the peaceful surroundings, a fresh and new location, and taking some time for yourselves. Reconnect with old friends!


 

Spa getaway. Lots of spas have packages at low costs. Reserve one for your girls and enjoy their facilities and unwind. Relax and have fun! Spa packages can start as low as $50 or less per person and includes access to all of the facilities. 


 

Wine-tasting. Go to a local vineyard or brewery and sample the local wine or beer. You can bring a picnic of grapes, crackers, cheese and baguette bread for a fancy snack. Perfect for the bride and bridesmaids if they are wine-os. 


 

Visit a new place. Whether it’s a small town or a big city, book a tour and enjoy exploring and discovering the history, culture and beauty of a new spot. Book a tour in an old city and look at the ruins. Immerse yourself in the culture of musical and artsy places such as New Orleans. Tour downtown of a big city and see all the sights. The possibilities are endless.


 

Road trip. Book a limo, a bus or whatever else you fancy and party inside. Often they come with drinks, sometimes a few snacks. It’s even a good idea to use just to take to your destination, especially if it’s out of town.


 

Tea party. Break out your vintage dresses, tea sets, pretty hats and meet in a local garden or even your backyard for a fancy tea party. You can also have cupcakes and lots of other pasteries to nibble on.


Got any more fun ideas? Comment below!

How To Have A Safe Halloween During The Pandemic

Posted by Live Love Mom on October 16, 2020 at 8:45 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Rev Dr. Stéphanie McEndree




With some towns banning the distribution of candy to prevent the spread of the virus, it can be difficult for families to figure out how to celebrate halloween with their kids and still make it a magical time for everyone. Here are some ideas for fun for the whole family!


Carve Pumpkins. Get some pumpkins from the grocery store and carve them into silly faces or inspiring shapes. Hollow them out and put an LED powered fake candle inside for a spooky glow. For younger kids, you can also paint the pumpkins or draw on them with markers.


Free Printables. Lots of places offer free printables with pages of halloween-themed drawings your kids can color in, and sometimes even some arts and crafts that are spooky. You can also look up some ideas on Pinterest on how to make some ghosts, cats, and other things with construction paper, tissues, tape, markers and more!


Scavenger hunt. Buy some candy in bulk at your local dollar stores or grocery stores and hide them around the house! Have your kids run around and find the candy around your house or in your backyard, weather-permitting. It will be like a cross between Halloween and Easter, hunting for easter eggs. Be sure to write down a list of where you hid the candy so you don't end up discovering them a year later. 


Deliveries. In order to keep everyone safe on Halloween, some towns are doing free candy deliveries for families with children. Be sure to sign up ahead of time, and to answer the door wearing a face mask and a face shield if you have one. Your kids will still get to eat candy on Halloween and this will bring smiles to their little faces!


Haunted House. Make your own haunted house for your family. Dim the lights, hang some scary decorations and make a blind haunted house too. Put some cold spaghetti in some jello while blindfolding your kids and tell them it's guts! Put some cold sausages in a bowl and tell them it's intestines! Put some raw ground beef and tell them it's brains! Of course, afterwards turn on the lights and show them the bowls so they know it's just a scary trick. 


Movie Marathon. Break out the popcorn and watch a scary movie marathon cuddled up on the couch with your kiddos! Stay up late together since Halloween is on a Saturday this year. They can hide under blankets during the scary parts if the kiddos are too scared!


Costume Contest. Dress up in your best costume that you can find from previous years, and have your kids do the same. Whoever comes out with the best costume wins! You can even make one out of household objects if you want; tie a towel around your neck for a cape, use a pot and spoon as a shield and sword, make a tinfoil hat, wrap a blanket around you for a dress! Use your imagination!


White sheets. Have a friendly competition with each other and wrap each other in white sheets or big towels to make a mummy disguise. The best one wins! You can also see who makes the best ghost by adding googly eyes to the sheets and taping a black circular piece of construction paper to make it look more realistic.


Bathtime. Get a funky colored bath bomb and have your kids pretend it's something magical. With purple, have it be a witch's magic spell to get clean. With green, it can be a witch's stew. Red can be blood, and black can be the dark of the night. White can be on the moon! Be creative!


Have any more Halloween ideas for home? Comment below!

Cheap Environmentally-Friendly Confetti

Posted by Live Love Mom on October 9, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Rev Dr. Stéphanie McEndree




With more and more eco-friendly options available to help us save the planet, it’s only fair we do our part. Weddings can be incredibly wasteful with single-use plastics and a “littering” custom such as plastic or paper confetti. Here are some cheap, easy and even free ideas to buy or make your own biodegradable confetti!

 


 

Leaf confetti.

This can often be free; simply gather fallen leaves or pick some from your backyard or local park and use your hole-puncher to create a natural, colorful confetti. You can prepare them a few weeks before the wedding and dry the leaves, but store in a dark, dry place to avoid mold growth. You can also do this the day before the wedding so it’s fresh and ready to go. You can even use shaped hole punchers to give you more variety in appearance. You can even mix in herb leaves for a naturally healing scent.

 


 

Dried flower confetti.

These are easy to DIY or even buy pre-dried. You can buy flowers from the grocery store, pick them from your yard or even pick wildflowers. Dry them and press them, then put them in reusable cloth bags and distribute to guests! You can buy pre-made by the litre. Get at least one handful per guest so they can enjoy throwing it at the newlyweds. Dried flowers are used in pot-purri and always smell amazing. The natural scent of roses or lilacs will be preserved and everyone will smell amazing!

 


 

Fresh rose petals.

These are often provided by florists, this is the priciest option. If it’s a year before your wedding, consider planting or buying rose bushes to pick your own. They smell great, look great and make for a very classic and romantic exit for the guests. You can choose whichever color you want; baby pink, hot pink, red, white, yellow, and even black or blue. You can also go to the grocery store and get a bunch of flowers a day or two before the wedding and use the petals from them. They are often cheaper than the florist's. 

 


 

Small leaves.

These can be gathered from plants or trees with small leaves. There is no need for a hole puncher and you can gather these stress-free the day before your wedding. If you don’t recognize poisonous plants such as poison ivy, stick to getting leaves from trees to avoid getting a horrible rash the day before.


Herbs.

You can plant them in the spring and harvest them in the summer! Whether it's basil, rosemary, mint, or sage, the leaves are sure to smell amazing. You can dry them or pluck them fresh a few days before the wedding and have guests throw them. They can even be an alternative to flower petals for the flower girl to sprinkle. These herbs are also calming so everyone will feel zen and serene.

 


 

Bird seed.

Leave a feast for the birds and let guests celebrate with you at the same time! You can buy large amounts at your local dollar store. Since rice has been outlawed due to it being harmful for the birds, this will be our feathered friends' favorite option. Be sure to have this thrown in an area where you will not visit again that day, such as the ceremony location as the newlyweds walk back down the aisle as they are newly married. This will avoid birds flocking and bothering any guests or the wedding party. It can also be thrown at the end of the reception as the newlyweds make their getaway to their wedding night.

 


 

Lavender.

A calming flower, lavender confetti will smell amazing and help save the planet. Make sure no guest is allergic before ordering or gathering. Make paper cones to hold them with some old sheet music, book pages or newspaper. Lavender does have an effect that can make people drowsy, so be sure to use this at the end of the reception. You don't want your guests retreating home for a nap right after the ceremony!


Flower Petals.

Don't have roses or don't want any? You can go flower-picking in a field and use those petals! Simply go pick the flowers one or two days before the wedding and pull the petals apart from the flowers into little cloth bags so your guests can grab a handful and throw them. You can also do this a few weeks before the wedding and dry the flowers out in the sun for a day and then store the petals in the bags. You can also grow your own flower garden if you have at least a year before your wedding, or if you got engaged in let's say the winter, you plant the flowers in the spring and you marry in the summer. You can have whatever flowers you want for just the price of the seeds and some water to take care of them. If you don't have a yard or a garden, simply pot the flowers and put them on your balcony for some sun or even by the window.


Have any more ideas you'd like to share? Comment below!

 


11 Things To Expect When Your Daughter Has Short Hair

Posted by Live Love Mom on October 2, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Rev Dr. Stéphanie McEndree




Recently, my 4-year-old daughter told me that she wanted short hair. I wasn't sure if she was serious, but she kept insisting. I showed her different short hairstyles and she chose one. ''Mom this one! This one! Please, cut my hair up to here, please please please!''


Other than a trim and her dad giving her bangs, she's never had a haircut. I looked at her long and beautiful, golden curls and felt some sadness. I didn't want to let them go. I had been told before, once they are cut they may never grow back again. The moment was fleeting, and I realized that this is her hair on her head, and she should be able to make decisions about her own body (that aren't life and death). So you know what? I told her yes.


We headed upstairs and I have a professional hair-cutting kit and I put the smock around her and sat her on a dining room chair in the bathroom where there is a full-length mirror. She grinned ear-to-ear and giggled, she said ''I'm so excited!'' I kept asking her if she was sure, and she kept saying yes. So I combed her hair, pinned up different sections, and cut the back layer to the length she wanted. She saw her hair fall on the floor and squealed in delight. ''I can stop if you want. Are you sure? Do you still want me to do this?'' I asked. ''Yes mom stop saying that and cut my hair!'' So section by section I cut it until it was the length she wanted.


She looked at herself in the mirror and grinned so much her cheeks started to hurt. She said, ''Mom I am so beautiful, I look like a princess!'' I told her yes you are. She absolutely loved her haircut and still does. I'll never forget how happy a simple haircut made her.


I didn't expect it to look so gorgeous on her, but it does! Her face shape is perfect for it, and her thick hair frames her face well and there is even a part that curls still by her ear. She says she loves braids so I've braided the hair out of her face in a short one and she is just as happy as when I braided her long hair. 



 

1. Mistaken for a boy

''His hair is getting a little long, it's time for a haircut,'' I heard a stranger say. That day she was wearing an orange shirt and tan shorts (gender-neutral). I'm glad she didn't hear it, or she must have thought it wasn't about her.

''Why is he in a dress?'' Well first off there is nothing wrong with a boy in a dress, secondly why do you care what a stranger is wearing, and thirdly short hair doesn't mean boy.

I was surprised I was getting these remarks because her hair really isn't that short.

 

2. Hoping she doesn't hear the comments

The last thing I want is my little girl to be hurt or confused. I am thankful she has a happy-go-lucky attitude and if she does hear, she corrects the person. ''I'm not a little boy, I'm a big girl!'' 

Another mom asked me if I cut her hair because my daughter had lice. I informed her that you don't need to cut hair to help with lice anymore, and no, my child has never had lice. 

 


3. Having the other parent freak out

If you're a single parent, the other parent might freak out. Girl's hair is seen as a precious sign of femininity and I have no idea why, but parents often never cut their kid's hair other than a little trim, even if their daughters beg them to. Some girls have to wait until they are 18 years old before they cut their hair, or they get it cut by a friend, or they do it themselves. 

I remember the first time I cut a bit of my own hair off, my mother started crying when I showed her the hair I had cut off. My 6 year old had cut a little bit of her hair off and she expected me to freak out but I didn't. I told her it was her hair and it was fine. Her father however...he told her and my 4 year old that they need his permission to cut their hair. I told them privately that this isn't true, it's their hair and they can decide whether they want to cut it or not.

 

 

Even my husband looked at my daughter before she cut her hair and said ''please don't cut your hair, I like long hair.'' To which I looked at him and replied ''Then grow your hair long, your preference doesn't matter on someone else's hair.'' Men are taught to value feminine aspects at a young age such as dresses, skirts, pastel colors, long hair, lipstick, everything that people would call ''girly girl'' stuff. It can take years to unlearn these things. So with a little help I taught some people that they should never pressure my kids to keep their appearance a certain way to please someone else. No one ever asks this of boys and I won't have it.

 

4. Adults may not be so nice

''Why would you cut your hair?'' and I've heard ''Did you cut her hair as a form of punishment?'' and also ''Did you force her to cut her hair?'' Of course the answer is no on the last two counts and the first, well it's nobody's business but my daughter's. 

 

5. Grandparents will react

''Her hair is always in her face! Why did you cut it so short that she can't wear a ponytail?' How are you supposed to do her hair? Now I can't braid her hair anymore or make cute pigtails!'' Well her hair isn't anyone's plaything or possession. I stand by my daughter's decision to have her hair cut in the length she desired.

 

 

6. People you don't know will think you're crazy

Strangers will comment things saying I am trying to force masculinity onto her, or that I wanted a boy so I cut her hair and make her wear boy's clothes. Some have said I am blind and can't tell my kids apart so I had to cut the hair of one of them. Others will cite articles where parents or teachers abusively cut a girl's hair as a punishment and accuse me of doing the same. They will say I want to make her appear younger because I can't accept the fact that she's no longer a baby. It's really horrible how seriously people take a haircut.

 

7. Her hair will be talked about everywhere

There are positive comments out there of course. ''What gorgeous thick hair she has!'' ''What a beautiful bob!'' and she has been compared to Ruby Rose on the set of OITNB. She will also put on a crown and a princess dress and say that she is a beautiful princess and no one dares say otherwise.

 

8. Her hair has been a teacher

 

I feel like this was a very important step in teaching her about consent. I always tell my girls that their bodies are theirs, and they get to decide for their bodies. She had decided to cut her hair, and I did it. When she was younger she wanted her ears pierced (later changed her mind so we took them out), so we did it. I won't change anything about her appearance unless she asks. I remember people giving me and my friends a real hard time about them getting their hair cut, and quite frankly it's ridiculous. It's dead protein strands attached to a scalp, and it always grows back.

 

I also think that this helps teach her about gender roles and how they are fluid. Girls aren't required to have long hair, and boys aren't required to have short hair. We are fortunate to have members in my family where the ladies have short hair and my brother has longer hair, I want her to know that it's okay to be herself and not worry about the little box of femininity society try to trap her in.


9. Kids may say mean things

She hasn't been to school yet at her age, but it's bound to happen. There is a child in her daycare who has hair on the longer side and she was told that she looks like him. But not once did she tell me she wants to grow it back. She did come home crying from daycare once when she told me that a kid told her she wasn't pretty. I gave her a big hug and I told her that this kid is wrong. She said her daycare teacher heard what the boy said and he was reprimanded. Parents, teach your kids to be nice and not to be bullies, especially at such a young age. Thankfully I am always able to console her, and her teacher and friends and family boosted her confidence again by telling her how beautiful she is.


10. You need to be creative with hairstyles

Longer hair is easier: wash it, brush it, put it in pigtails, a bun, a ponytail or a braid and you're done for the day. Not with short hair! You need to pull back the hair from her face and secure it with a hairband. You can braid this as well so your daughter can have some braids. You can also do small pigtails. If some hair still falls in her face or her hair is too short to be kept back in ponytails, you can always add barettes to keep her hair away, or hair clips or bobby pins. You can also put on a headband or a bandana. There are still lots of possibilities and let your child choose as well.


11. You may need to brush her hair more often

The first time I cut my hair as a child, my mother told me that I would need to brush it more often. I'm not sure if this is true or not, but just in case it is I've listed it here. Since the hair can't be tied back in one long braid, it will move around a lot more as your daughter runs around, so it will get messy faster. You may have to comb or brush her hair accordingly. However, I have found that personally with my daughter, brushing once a day is fine and she hardly gets any knots. It depends on the length.


 

All in all, hair is just hair! Let your child choose which hairstyle they want. If they ever don't like it, their hair will always grow back!

DIY Drinks For Your Wedding Reception

Posted by Live Love Mom on September 25, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Dr. Stéphanie McEndree




Not sure how you can keep guests hydrated and happy without paying $2 a glass from a caterer? Whip up some punch! Here are some tips on how to make it happen.


 

Non-alcoholic punch. Having a dry wedding? It’s important to have some tasty drinks to keep things tasty, so mix up a mocktail for your guests. You can find plenty of recipes and ideas here.


 

Spiked punch. There are some wonderful recipes out there that mix many different types of alcohol, even beer! My favorite is a list of 14 big batches of recipes, all for under $30 here. You can also find many more recipes here.


 

Keep it cool. Make a punch ice ring that will slowly melt to keep your punch nice and cold for hours. It’ll infuse the concoction with flavor instead of watering it down. Not sure how to make one? Here is a recipe, and you can find many more online and on Pinterest.


 

Make big batches. Whether you are serving slush-like cocktails, spiked punch, cocktails or mocktails, you will need big batches for weddings, even if you only have 25 guests it’s better to have too much than not enough.


 

Glassware. Be sure your venue or caterer provides enough glasses for everyone, even if it’s just one per guest. If you are providing your own, be sure you have enough and that there is a sink available at the venue for guests to rinse out their glasses if they want to try many different cocktails.


 

Keep guests hydrated. No one wants a hangover in the morning, or guests getting sick due to dehydration. Keep plenty of bottled water on hand, or bring a water dispenser if you have one, or make sure there is a water fountain at the venue. This is especially true if your venue is outdoors and during the hot summer months. You want to keep your guests happy, healthy and comfortable.

To My Dearly Loved Grandfather

Posted by Live Love Mom on September 18, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (0)

by: Dr. Stéphanie McEndree




Dear Grandpa,


I can't believe you're gone. I was sure we would have at least a few more years together. I wasn't told that you were in pain, or that your health was declining. I wish I had been informed sooner, before it became too late. I was told before you went, you had no more pain. I am glad that you were able to pass away with your dignity intact, and that you are no longer suffering. You never wanted to be in a nursing home, so I am relieved you never had to go in one. You were able to stay home with your wife and close to your loved ones. 


I am very thankful that you came to my wedding. My brother and myself, and my girls were able to see you one last time before you passed away. My brother hadn't seen you in three years before then so it was especially important. You got to meet his girlfriend of now seven years. I am glad that I went to visit you April of last year. We got to spend a week in your home where my girls brought you great joy. My oldest particularly enjoyed your company, and would cuddle and hug you a lot. We all sat together during mealtimes and ate well. 


Not many men live to meet their great-grandchildren, and I am so happy you met yours. I never had the pleasure of meeting any of my great-grandfathers, and here both my kids met both of theirs through me. It truly is a blessing. You were there for the most important milestones of my life; my children's blessings, and of course my wedding. You got to meet my kids when they were babies, and got to watch them grow up to school age. That certainly is something.


I remember you fondly. My brother and I would play in your basement when we were just kids. As we grew up, we got to spend more time with you. I would cook with Grandma and my brother would accompany you in your wood-working. I'd knit with my grandma and you'd play outside with my brother. We were always well fed, loved and pampered when we went to your home. We got to spend time with my aunt Trina and all her dogs. You even came to visit us during different holidays. It was very special having grandparents who not only spoke english, but who were so active in our lives. There wasn't a birthday or Christmas that went by without us getting a card from you and Grandma, even as adults. 


When I visited you in PEI, you told me your life story. I wanted to share that with the family now, and I can tell you that I won't ever forget it. You were a strong and brave man, and you loved your family the best you knew how. We will always remember you and keep you close in our hearts. We love you, Grandpa. We attended your funeral and there was no dry eye, not even my kids. They understand now that you're gone and you aren't coming back. They also know that you are watching over them now. Rest well, Grandpa. Rest in peace.



You were born the day after Christmas in 1939 to Alexandre Hallis and Marie Marguerite Baker, in Montreal. You were their first child, and you would later have six brothers and sisters. The youngest of your siblings was born when you were 9 years old. Your family lived in Longueuil, and you were particularly close to your Aunt Rosie. When you were about 15 years old, you were given to an all-boys orphanage. Your mother was deemed mentally unfit to care for her children, and your dad was working. Your siblings were also put in orphanages. You spent your teenage years in that orphanage, and you were able to visit your family for Christmas. They always gifted you clothes, since toys were not allowed to be brought back with you to the orphanage. You got to spend holidays with them. The orphanage wasn't easy, as the boys would cause fights and there were bullies there as well. At 16 years old, you finally got out of the orphanage. Orphanages were being abolished and a foster care system was set up, and you had nowhere to go. You told me that your younger brother Georges was taken from your parents and placed with a foster home at that time. You said he was the only one never to have been put in an orphanage, and you suspect he was abused. You signed up after new year's in January, in the military by telling them you were 18 years old. You chose the Air Force, and started out as a Private. Finally you could start your career, and you had a place to go. In your 20s, you were stationed in Prince Edward Island, where you met my grandmother. You were married in August when you were 23 years old and settled on the island with your wife. The next year, you had my dad. My grandma got pregnant twice more but unfortunately miscarried. She was told by the doctors that she would never have any more children. You moved to Bagotville since you were assigned to the base there, and Grandma was pregnant again. Thankfully, 6 years after my dad was born you had a healthy baby girl, my aunt Trina. You stayed there for a few years and that's how my dad and aunt learned french. You knew french already since you were born and grew up in a french province, but it was new to my dad and his sister. Grandma of course refused to learn the language so it must have been lonely for her. As live went on, you were stationed in Nova Scotia, and even Germany as my dad recalls. My dad told me that at one point you were in boarding houses for military families, and there were rats that came in the house out of the toilet. I was told that you killed the rat, flushed it down the toilet, so that ''those other rats know not to come up this toilet''. That actually worked. You found your calling in the air force as a firefighter and put out fires in military airplanes. You had accululated so much vacation time that you ''went on vacation'' when you were 52 years old. By the time you were 55, you had retired at the highest rank, Chief Warrant Officer. You settled in PEI with your wife and daughter. You wisened into old age and watched your kids, grandkids, and great-grandkids grow up. You did wood-working as a hobby and didn't do it for a profit. You could figure out measurements just by looking at a photo of something. You were really talented. Your father's family came from the Ukraine and Poland, and your mother's family was french. You were buried in Pleasant Valley, PEI. 


Rest In Peace

Jean Hallis

1939-2020

Hardy And Over-Producing Perennials To Grow In Your Garden

Posted by Live Love Mom on September 11, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (1)

by: Dr. Stephanie McEndree




Unlike a lot of blog posts I have seen out there, some people truly do enjoy invastive, over-pruducing and hardy perennials to reap a ripe harvest. Whether you are planting a little bit that you want to spread over a large area or you want to plant it in a pot to keep it contained, these plants can come in handy. You can plant it once, and harvest it forever with a large production. 


Rhubarb. The roots and leaves are poisonous, so be sure only to harvest the stalks. As soon as it starts to flower, remove the flower and that entire stalk so the plant focuses oh making a ripe harvest. You can harvest in the spring time as well as the fall. The leaves get very big so they can block the sun from other plants so be sure to give it some space. 


Mint has been described by many homesteaders and gardeners to be invasive. Even just one mint plant will multiply into many and take over your garden very quickly. So if all you have is mint or all you want is mint, this is the plant for you. To keep it under control, you can keep it in a pot. However, mint can be a steady source of income during the summer, sometimes even during the colder months. You can simply uproot the plants you don't want, get a cheap pot at the dollar store, and sell them locally. If you keep them in a big pot indoors, they will have enough room to make more plants, which you can sell during the winter as well. The harvest is always huge, as mint plants grow tall with many leaves, and even flowers in July.


Chives are told to be impossible to get rid of, so be sure you want this in your garden. I've seen people say they have removed bulbs yet still have chives growing in their garden, or that in May they are already getting started. Be sure chives is something you or someone you know would appreciate eating or having. What is lovely about chives is that they will grow each and every year without fault after you planted them once. You will have plenty of food for years to come!


Oregano is an herb used for cooking, popurri or as a spice. It's very resiliant, so you don't have to worry about your oregano plants dying. Simply put them in a pot and keep them by the sun and water them. You can also plant them outside in your garden and enjoy a bountiful harvest in the warmer months. 


Creeping Thyme is another herb that is used as a spice or in cooking. It adds an earthy taste to your dish and is great to add in oven-baked goods as well as crock-pot recipes. Plant it in your outdoor garden, or even as a crop if you have a farm. 


St Johns Wort has many healing properties. It's said to be used as a natural supplement to treat depression among many other things. It produces well and has a great survival rate. This can be potted or used outdoors. For better protection against bugs and chemicals, put them in a pot indoors. Just don't fertilize them in this case as the whole house will start smelling.


Bamboo has the same uses as wood and can even be made into textiles. It grows fast and over-produces and is very invasive. If you are able to plant some, be sure it's far away from other plants as it will take over your garden. Lots of buildings are made with bamboo as well as furniture, clothing, blankets and bags. Bamboo comes in handy if you know what to do with it.


To Rent or to Buy Wedding Linens

Posted by Live Love Mom on August 28, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (3)

by: Dr. Stephanie McEndree




It’s the age-old question; is it cheaper and better to buy or rent linens? Here we break down the pros and cons of each so you can make your own educated decision.

 

 

Pros of renting linens:

 

You don’t have to worry about re-selling them

They won’t take up room in storage in your home

The renters often decorate for you

Your wedding insurance can reimburse you if you make a claim if something went wrong

No need to clean up, the providers will do it for you

No need to come back after the wedding and pick things up


Cons of renting linens:

 

It’s often pricier, going upwards of $3-$5 per item or more

There is a LOT of stuff to rent; chair bows, chair covers, table cloths, table skirts, napkins, table runners, etc.

You run the risk of the provider never showing up or bringing the wrong linens

The providors could decorate things not to your stipulations

Image result for wedding linens


 

Pros of buying linens:

 

Often cheaper and sold in bulk

You can always make your money back by reselling them

You can decorate the room exactly as you like it

You get to keep them for future fancy events if you so wish, such as baptisms, baby showers, anniversary parties, retirement parties, graduation parties and more

You can pass them on to friends, family or even your child for their wedding

You buy exactly what you want and you know you’ll get exactly what you want at your wedding


Cons of buying linens:

 

You’ll probably have to wait until wedding season rolls around again for you to resell them

You’ll have to clean up yourself (in some cases)

You’ll have to go back to the venue after the honeymoon to pick them up, or arrange a family member or friend to pick them up after the wedding

You’ll have to wash them yourself, and depending how big your wedding is, can mean MANY loads of laundry

Takes up space in your home as you wait to resell them

Feel free to add more pros and cons in the comment section if you can think of any others. I hope this post helps you narrow down which choice you’d like to make for your wedding.

Georgeous Trend: Dip-dyed Wedding Dresses

Posted by Live Love Mom on August 21, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (3)

by: Dr. Stephanie McEndree





Are you a bride who doesn’t mind going against the grain? Do you wish you could get away with a different color dress at your wedding? Do you dream of adding a splash of color to your dress? Then this beautiful trend is perfect for you!

 


You don’t even need to stick to one color. You can go with rainbow colors, colors of the sunset, or even many different shades of a single color. Your dress is sure to be unique and stand out on your special day.

 


Guests will be wowed that you took such a daring plunge as you walk down the aisle. Your dress will make a lasting impression for years to come. You won’t ever be forgotten, that’s for sure! Such a bold statement and all eyes are sure to be on you.

 

 

Sure, more traditional and closed-minded brides may turn up their noses at this trend. However, did you know that the white dress was made popular by one royal bride wearing it to her wedding? It was thought to be extremely lavish to have a white dress only for one day since it wasnharder to wash out stains back then. Without this revolutionary choice, brides would still wear black to this day!

 


So put on that dazzling dress and glide to your future spouse. You are radiant, confident and a goddess. You are a trend setter, and you follow your own rules. Strut your stuff and get married!



What I love about this look is that it looks like the bride stepped into the sunset as if it’s a painting. The yellow and red look like the flames of love that she will be fanning effortlessly throughout her marriage. It shows that she would walk through for for her spouse. The darker colors below look like the dark of night, like those cold winter evenings she will warm her husband, and how in dark times she will still be there. These types of dresses tell so many stories, they’re a work of art on their own. It’s like getting married in a famous painting that fits you just right.

 


A bonus is that this dress can fot in with all sorts of different traditions and cultures. It’s perfect for a Dia de los Muertos wedding, as well as for a Celtic wedding with the groom wearing a similar quilt. They look great in every season, and compliment many different skylines, backdrops and landscapes.

 

 

An unexpected advantage? With your dress dark at the bottom, any dirt accumulated during the day walking outdoors and kicking up dust won’t show at all. Some dirt won’t even show up in photos, let alone stand out against the wine red or midnight sky colors. You can trudge through mud, stomp the yard and dance up a storm without a worry!

 

 

Your photos are guarenteed to look spectacular. You can even have bridesmaids with dresses that compliment your dress colors; such as red, orange, yellow, blue or purple. You can even have all of the above with mismatched dresses! The possibilities are endless. You can even DIY this look yourself or custom order!

 


 


Edible Weeds To Forage From Your Backyard

Posted by Live Love Mom on August 13, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (7)

by: Dr. Stephanie McEndree





Edible greens can come from surprising places. Some are so hardy that they grow through cracks in the sidewalk! A lot of people simply remove weeds and throw them away. You can simply harvest them, wash them, and eat them. In fact, here are the most common weeds in almost every backyard that are not only edible, but bring a lot of nutritional value to your daily meals.



Clover has many different uses. You can pick it directly from the ground and wash it, and stick it in a salad. You can also leave it out in the sun to dry, and use it to make tea with the flowers. They are also edible raw and can be sauteed in different meals for a splash of color.



Plantain has both medicinal and edible purposes and is very popular for the forager. They can be added topically to soothe burns, rashes, stings and wounds. The leaves, whether old or young, can be sauteed, steamed, boiled or eaten raw after being washed. The seeds can be ground into a flour or cooked like a grain. These can also be used as fiber supplements or laxatives.



Dandelion is probably the most common weed listed here, and it can be very invasive with how fast it grows, spreads, and comes back even after removal. The roots go in very deep into the soil that they are nearly impossible to remove for good. The plant can regenerate and grow from a broken off root. The young leaves are considered less bitter, but the older ones are also very much edible. They can be eaten raw or cooked, and every part is edible. You can add the leaves in a salad, steamed or sauteed, even added to soups. The flowers can be eaten raw, breaded, fried, or used to make wine or syrup, or even salves. Roots are often dried to make tea, or roasted, or added to root vegetable recipes. Dandelions are way too useful to simply be pulled out and thrown away. In the past, people used to remove grass to plant dandelions.



Wood sorrel can be used as a thirst quencher and is said to be very refreshing to eat, so it's also popular for foragers during the hot summer months. The flowers, leaves and immature seed pods are edible but are said to taste sour like lemons. They can be a wonderful addition to salads, soups, seasoning and sauces. They look like clovers, but can be differenciated by the heart-shaped appearance of the leaves. They also have yellow floweds, when clover has purple or white flowers.



Curly Dock also known as yellow dock, is recommended to be eaten in moderation. The leaves can be eaten raw when they are young, and the older leaves need to be cooked and can be added to salads or soups. Stems can be peeled and eaten raw or cooked, while the mature seeds can also be eaten raw or boiled, and can also be roasted to make a drink similar to coffee. Change the water several times when you cook them because they are high in oxalic acid.



Purslane is most often found in damp areas where there is ample shade, so it is often never far from a body of water, a valley, or anywhere that regularly gets hosed or collects a lot of rainwater. You'd never think to look twice at this weed, but it's actually in the succulent family that can be eaten raw, cooked, or added to recipes for a natural pepepr flavor. Both the leaves and stemps are extremely rich in omega-3 and antioxidants. Add them to a stir-fry, salad, or to stews or soups. 



Lamb's Quarters are in the spinach family and are also known as goosefoot. The seeds are similar in appearance to quinoa and can be eaten as a side or main dish. Goosefoot can be eaten raw, steamed, sauteed or used as a replacement for spinach.



Chickweed can be made into a tea and used as a slight diuretic. With both edible and medicinal properties, this weed is always a joy to have in your backyard. The leaves, stemps and flowers can be consumed cooked or raw. It tastes like spinach and can also be used topically for small cuts, rashes and burns.



Wild Amarath also known as pigweedare popular with vegan foragers as the seeds are a great source of protein. They can be gathered and cooked whole grain or as a ground meal. Older leaves can be cooked similar to spinach, and younger leaves can be used in any recipe that requires leafy green vegetables such as salads or garnishes.



Mallow also known as malva or cheeseweed is mainly found in the United States in lawns or gardens. The leaves and seeds are edible either raw or cooked, especially when they are young. More mature leaves are best cooked, steamed, boiled or sauteed. Like the name might suggest, it doesn't taste like cheese and is not a cheese replacement.



Finding The Right Wedding Hashtag

Posted by Live Love Mom on August 6, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (7)

By: Rev Dr. Stephanie McEndree




Wedding hashtags are rising in popularity. With the social media generation, it makes finding your wedding-specific posts easier.


 

Hashtags were created to find specific things you are looking for. Since the hashtag #wedding has millions of posts, it would be hard to dig through those for hours just to find your photos. Professional photographers, venues and family members can use a custom hashtag created by the couple so it’s easier to find their posts. Are you ready to find yours?


 

For those who have tough last names, such as Asian or Russian names, we suggest a hashtag in your own language. Or, use the woman’s last name in a hashtag such as this: #RomanovNoMore for those who will take their husband’s surname. You can also use generics, such as #MrAndMrsGusenov and such.


 

Here are some ideas for popular last names.


 

Combs: #HereCombsTheBride

Murray: #WillYouMurrayMe #GettingMurrayed #WeAreGettingMurrayed

Smith: #SmithenByYou #ForeverSmithen #AlwaysSmithen

Heele: #HeadOverHeeles

Vincent: #WeddingOfTheVincentury

Jones: #JonesingToBeWed

Hall: #HallwaysAndForever #DeckTheHalls

Reede: #ReedeingOurVows

Redd: #YouReddMyMind

Moore: #ILoveYouMoore #MineForeverMoore 

Brown: #BrownWedding

White: #AllDressedInWhite #WhiteDressWedding 

Greene: #GreeneWeddingDay

Day: #ItsOurWeddingDay #DayTimeWedding #DayWeddingTime

Wyatt: #WyattDontWeGetMarried

Parker: #ParkerRightAtTheChapel

Endree: #EndreeIntoMarriage

Bell: #RingTheWeddingBells

Lyons: #ImNotLyons

Dore: #DoreMiWedding

Moss: #MossBeTrueLove

Lachapelle: #GettingMarriedAtLachapelle #HitchedAtLachapelle

Gates: #GatesToMatrimony #GatesToHeaven

Baker: #BakerAWeddingCake

Rider: #RiderOffIntoTheSunset #RiderIntoTheSunset 

Trump: #LoveTrumpsAll

Obama: #ObamaSelfNoMore

Sherman: #ShermanAndWife

Herman: #HerManForever #HermanAndWife

King: #KingAndHisQueen

Morrison: #MorrisonToGetMarried

Paynter: #MarryAPaynter

Lloyd: #PraiseTheLloyd

Lord: #MarriedBeforeTheLord

Dalton: #DalTonsOfLove

Carlton: #CarlTonsOfHappiness

Tobe: #MeantToBe

Tremblay: #ImTremblayingWedding #ImTremblaying

Ramos: #VamosRamos

Miller: #MillerWeddingDay

Love: #LoveIsInTheAir

Black: #BlackTieWedding #BlackSuitWedding

Farmer: #FarmerFreshWedding

Ruiz: #JeezRuizWedding

Gonzales: #GonzaLesGetMarried 

Flores: #SmellTheWeddingFlores

Rodriguez: #RodriguezWhatImGettingMarried

Williams: #WilliamsYouMarryMe

Johnson: #JohnsonNoMore #JohnsonNotLonesome

Anderson: #AndersonTheyLivedHappilyEverAfter

Gahm: #2CanPlayAtThatGahm #GahmOn

Schucks: #AwwSchucks #SchucksToBeSingle

Spratt: #HolySprattrimony

Hines: #HinesByMe

Coppola: #ACoppolaNewlyWeds

Petti: #SammyGetsPetti

Watts: #TurnDownForWatts

Barretter: #ForBarretterOrWorse

Hesstory: #TheRestIsHesstory

Schulte: #ThouSchulteMarry

Perez: #ForThePerezOfOurDays

Sumanny: #SumannyReasonsToMarryYou

Wright: #FoundMrWright #FoundMissWright #FeelsSoWright

M(a)cPherson: #YoureMyMcPherson #YoureMyFavoriteMacPherson

Richards: #ForRichardsOrPoorer #RagsToRichards

Schwartz: #DontThwartTheSchwartz

Jones: #JonesingToBeA(husband's last name) #JonesingToBeHitched


For first names:

 

Chris & Mary: #MaryChrisMrs

Stephanie & Hugh: #StephanieReasonsToLoveHugh

Evan: #LoveYouEvanMore

Hugh: #HughTakeMyBreathAway #ILoveHugh #WillHughMarryMe

Lockhart: #LockedAndLoaded

Saul: #SaulIEverWantIsYou #SaulIEverWanted

Richard: #ForRichardOrForPoorer

Margaret: #IWillNotMargaretThis

William: #WillYouBeMyBride #WillYouMarryMe

Mei: #YouMeiKissTheBride #YouMaeKissTheBride

Mary: #WillYouMaryMe

Bart: #YoureAPieceOfBart #YoureAWorkOfBart #AlwaysPartOfMyBart #MyLoveMyBartMySoul

Cameron: #CamtWaitToMarryYou #CameronNeedsMaceroons

Zachary: #ZachsWhatImTalkingAbout #ZachsAllFolks

Wanda: #IWandaBeWithYou #IWandaMarryYou

Eli: #EliEverWanted 

Ashley: #AshleyEverAfter #AshleighEverAfter #AshleeEverAfter #AshMeToBeYours #AshMeToMarryYou


The best hashtags for weddings are punny and make use of the words and names used. When common names are used, such as Smith, the wedding year, date or location can make yours more unique. For your own unique hashtag, be sure to email us at livelovemom1@gmail.com or comment below

How To Write Your Own Vows

Posted by Live Love Mom on July 29, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (5)

by: Rev Dr. Stephanie McEndree




In my experience, it’s always better to write your very own vows. I’ve said vows to my husband three times; once at our wedding where they were bits and pieces of vows I read online I felt I related to. The second, at our handfasting where my husband and I read the traditional celtic vows. And finally, just today where I wrote my very own vows that came from the heart. It’s only with the vows from today that I cried saying them, and that they felt truly 100% right. My husband wrote his very own with no pre-written guides at the wedding, and he cried, and never regretted them. I therefore stand strong in my opinion: always go with your very own vows, straight from the heart.

 

Now some people aren’t the best writers, and that’s okay. There are many tips that can be used to make your words into beautiful vows, or even just say them the way they are. Here are some tips to help you write vows from your own very heart.

 

Listen to other people’s vows. Choose the style you like the most, and what you love most about what was said. Was it when the bride reminisced about when they first met? Was it when she described their first I love you’s? Was it when she described the very essence and depth she feels her partner’s love?


Use your own words. This is very important to make them your very own. For example, my cousin’s vows to her wife were ”You are in my bones Heather Dawn.” and her wife’s words were ”You are in my bones, the tips of my toes to the tips of my fingers.” So I went with the parts of me that I felt my husband’s love…I said ”You are in my heart, my mind, my soul, and my womb where our child will grow, Bart Alan.” You see, I described where he was in my being, which turns out were very different places, and had very different meanings. You can do something similar in your vows.


Get fancy. If vocabulary isn’t your forte, look up the adjective you want to use on the thesaurus website and search for synonyms of the word you want to say. For example, if you want to say your husband is good to you but want a fancier word…you can use sweet, kind, generous, understanding, compassionate, etc. Go deeper than a general word if you can. Just exactly HOW is he good to you? What does he do that makes your heart sing?


Choose difining moments. When was the time you knew she was the one? When did you have your first adventure together? How did you feel when she proposed to you? These and many more you can use in your vows, and bringing you back to those magical moments on your wedding day, with your future spouse in front of you looking your best in front of all your friends and family, will make your heart burst with joy.


Include your culture. If you want, you can include aspects of yours and your fiancee’s cultures. You can speak about the times you first read the Torah together, or how special it was having your fiance at Temple with you. If your spouse converted to marry you, that is also something you can bring up to show how moved you were at their dedication. You can include your spiritual journey together, or quotes such as ”couples that pray together stay together.”


Following these tips, you are sure to create a masterpiece. Feel free to write many different drafts, even combine them and make something truly unique.

In honor of all mothers

Posted by Live Love Mom on July 22, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (5)

Author Unknown
Translated from french




 

A dad comes home after an exhausting day at work. He just wants to watch his soccer game without having to endure the cries of the kids or take care of the housework. But that day, his wife couldn't take it anymore and left him. Her world breaks down when she leaves him alone with her children. Here are these words:

 

" My love,

 

two days ago we had a big fight. I came home tired from work. It was 8:00 pm and all I wanted to do was sit on the couch to watch the game.

 

When I saw you, you were exhausted and in a bad mood. The kids were bickering and the baby was crying while you tried to put him to bed.

 

I turned up the volume on the TV.

 

‘Would you mind giving a hand and getting involved in your children's education?’ You said to me upset by turning down the TV.

 

Exasperated, I replied: ‘I spent my day at work so that you could spend yours at home playing dolls.’

 

The tone is raised. You cried because you were angry and tired. I told you cruel things. You shouted, saying you couldn't take it anymore. You left the house crying and left me alone with the children.

 

I had to feed them and put them to bed. The next day, you didn't come back and I had to ask my boss to have a day off to take care of the little ones.

 

I became aware of the whims and tears.

 

I realized what it was like to be everywhere at the same time, all day long, without having a free moment even to take a bath.

 

I realized what it was like to heat the milk, prepare a child and put the kitchen away, all at the same time.

 

I realized what it was like to be stuck all day without talking to someone over the age of 10.

 

I realized what it was like not to be sitting comfortably at the table, enjoying a quiet lunch on my break time, because you have to run after the kids.

 

I was so mentally and physically tired that the only thing I wanted was to sleep for 20 hours straight. But I had to wake up after 3 hours because the baby was crying.

 

I experienced two days and two nights in your own skin and I can tell you, I understand.

 

I understood your fatigue.

 

I understood that being a mom is a perpetual sacrifice.

 

I understood that it was more tiring than sitting in my chair for 10 hours or making financial decisions.

 

I understood your frustration at having abandoned your career and your financial independence so that you could raise our children.

 

I understood your doubts that our economic security no longer depends on you, but on your partner.

 

I understood the sacrifices you made by never going out with your friends, forgetting your exercises or not sleeping an entire night.

 

I understood how difficult it was to be trapped and to have to watch the children when you missed what was going on outside.

 

I also understood why you were susceptible when my mother criticized the way you raise our children, because no one knows better than a mother what is good for them.

 

I understood that becoming a mother means occupying one of the most important roles in our society. What no one recognizes, appreciates or remunerates.

 

I am writing this letter not only to tell you that I miss you, but also because I do not want to spend another day without telling you that:

 

"You are very brave, you do it perfectly and I admire you."

 

This very moving letter was shared more than 110,000 times on Facebook. To all the moms who have cared for or are still caring for us and who do so much for us, so much so that we take it for granted, this letter is for you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

How To Get Kids To Get Dressed

Posted by Live Love Mom on July 17, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (5)

By: Dr. Stephanie McEndree




We all have had at least one child who would rather be naked or in their underwear or diaper all day, every day! It makes it easier for them to lift up their knees as high as they can, do jumping jacks, or whatever else they have set their minds to do. However, there are times where kids have to suck it up and put some clothes on, especially in NO SHOES, NO SHIRT, NO SERVICE places. Unfortunately, trying to get them dressed is a whole other story. Meltdowns happen, tantrums are thrown, and kids refuse to clothe themselves. It can take forever to get your children finally dressed, and at that point they are kicking and screaming, or peeling their clothes right back off. So how can you get your kids clothed when the just do not want to be? Read on to learn more.


Here are some tips that my husband has come up with to help get kids dressed.


Help them. Even if they do not need the help, sometimes it will be enough to see you involved and willing to help, that they will cooperate. Put the shirt over their heads and help them put their arms through the sleeves. Place the shoes at their feet and hold them so they can balance as they slip their feet in. Open the waistband of pants so they can slip their legs in easier. Whatever it is, in my experience, they should cooperate.


Do not announce. Depending on the child, if you announce it is time for them to get themselves dressed, they will bolt. My girls love to run away and hide if we tell them that it is time to get dressed. In our cases and cases like this, it is best not to annouce that it is time to get dressed, or that they have to dress themselves. It works better for us if we say in the beginning of the day that they will need to get dressed later today. 


Involve them. Include them in the decision making process. Bring two different shirts and ask them to pick one. Do the same with pants and shoes. This is especially important when kids are at those ages that they are becoming more independent and assertive. They will not want to follow directions because they want to be their own person and lead their own life. So treat them like a big kid and let them choose what they would like to wear between two options.


Offer their favorites. Find their favorite outfit, or clothes in their favorite color, or favorite shoes. Kids are more likely to get dressed (even by themselves if they can) if you offer them their favorite outfit. I always get a big grin and gleeful shouts when I find my kids favorite outfits. What my kids hold very precious is their dresses, but especially ones that I make for them myself. Maybe your girls love a dress their grandma got for them.


Check the temperature. If it is hot outside and also too hot in your house, it is normal that the kids do not want to get dressed. They do not want to overheat. Turn down the thermostat and turn on a fan or the air conditioning. This way, if the room is comfortable enough the kids will not feel like they will overheat if they get dressed. If it is winter outside with snow out, simply point out to the window and show your kids that it is cold outside, so they will need to get dressed to stay warm.


Keep in mind that these tips may not work for every child. These tips work great for my kids, and they may work for yours as well. If you have any more tips to add, comment below!

Teach Kids To Grow Their Own Food

Posted by Live Love Mom on July 14, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (5)

by: Dr. Stephanie McEndree



 

 

It's important that kids learn at a young age where food comes from. This allows them to learn early what is edible, where to get fresh foods (such as a farm, orchard, or marketplace), and how to grow your own food. It's an important step to future self-sufficiency, and allows your children many years to perfect their green thumb and learn as much as they can. It's also the perfect way to get them to interact with nature, teaches them teamwork with you and their siblings, and teaches them patience to wait for the crops to grow.


 

Bring them to the store. Whether at a farmer's market, the dollar store or the grocery store, take your kids with you to purchase seeds. Show them the packages that show photos of the crops. Ask them what they would like to grow in the garden. Definitly pick up some radish seeds, as these can grow and be ready in as little as 3 weeks. Pick up some seeds of veggies and fruits that your kids enjoy and that you know you could use in your meals.


 

Re-use leftovers. You can plant an onion, potato, lettuce, chives, celery and garlic back into the ground. Simply soak them in water until they begin to sprout, then plant them in your garden. You won't have to buy these vegetables ever again. Show your kids how to do this and have them help you. Stumps won't ever go to waste and they will know how these foods are renewable and can be harvested many times.


 

Keep the seeds. For fruits such as tomatoes, apples, oranges, peaches and plums, you can save the seeds after you've eaten the fruit. Dry them out in the sun for a few days and plant them in your yard where you could use a tree. In about 5 years, the tree should bear fruit. A single tree can produce hundreds of fruit, so be sure to plant what you have an appetite for. If you live on a ranch or a farm or have a good amount of land, consider planting your very own orchard. It can even be a source of income if you advertise yourself as an orchard and pickers pay per pound. If the seeds aren't cooked, you can even plant nuts to grow nut trees.


 

Give a science lesson. If you want to go all out, get a soil testing kid and test the soil. Do this with your kids and show them what the results mean, and what other possible results mean. If your soil is deficient, buy the nutrients necessary and put them in the soil with your kids. Be sure to weed your garden to give ample space for your crops. If weeds are persistant and you don't mind these chemicals possibly getting into your food, you can buy some weed killers in a spray form that should kill the weed down to the root. It won't come back, but you do need to cut down some weeds as soon as they appear, such as dandelions with flowers, before the seeds get all over your garden and they keep your food from getting the sun, nutrients and water that they need to thrive. Show your kids a world map color-coded according to the zones. Show them which zone you're in and teach them the crops that are best planted in that zone. If the list is too long, tell them what won't thrive in your region.


 

Teach about edibles. Unless your kids have already been in the boy scouts and know how to identify leaves, show your kids which foods are edible. You can plant some herbs such as sage, basil, mint, oregano, rosemary, parsley, etc. and show your children that they are in fact edible. You can also plant lettuce, even different kinds of lettuce, to teach your kids that these are fine to eat and how to grow them. My kids just rip off a leaf or two when they are hungry and lettuce is growing in our backyard. You can also show them that dandelion leaves are also edible and can be harvested. You can also grow rhubarb and teach them that those leaves are not to be eaten, just the stalks.


 

Plant together. After you've weeded your chosen spot for the garden, you'll need to get rid of grass if any. Sometimes, especially around trees, some grass dies and doesn't grow back. You can transplant the grass over to those areas. Be sure to water it, as it will get some transplant shock. The reason the previous grass may have died is that the tree absorbs all the water there, so keep watering it to keep it alive. Once the grass is cleared, rake the soil. Dig the appropriate sized holes needed for the different types of seeds, and plant them with your kids. Bury them, and have your kids help with the watering. It can be added to their chores, but this chore comes with a tasty reward at the end. It also teaches them about concequences; if your kids don't water the crops appropriately, the plants will die. If they take good care of it, they will thrive. It also rewards hard work, dedication and patience, especially when it's the foods that kids like.




Harvest together. Reap what you sow together. For underground plants such as potatoes, carrots and radishes, dig around the plant to reveal to your kids the tasty treats underneath. Then, dig out the veggies and give your kids a taste. They should be very proud of their harvest. Then, rinse your bounty and cut away the bits you don't need, and plan a meal with it. Your whole family can enjoy the harvest and celebrate it's success. As for fruit, you can pick them when they are ready. I have found that birds, squirrels and other rodents seem to enjoy the fruits such as strawberries and raspberries and they eat them sometimes before they are ripe. I would suggest putting chicken wire over at least the strawberries so no one can get to them, or keeping one strawberry plant in a pot you put outside during the day and inside at night. Also, while you're at it: teach your kids how to prepare them, and some meals you can cook with what you harvested.


 

Plant perennials. You will only have to plant them once, and harvest them for a lifetime. I live in a 4b region, so I would suggest: strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, apple trees, plum trees, rhubarb, mint and chives. All of these grow very well and have come back every year (of course the tree itself stays year round). You can always do some research on which perennials are the best for your region and are easiest to plant and care for the first year.


Got any more suggestions? Comment below!

Easy Child's Striped Summer Tank Top

Posted by Live Love Mom on July 3, 2020 at 9:00 AM Comments comments (5)

by: Stephanie McEndree





This is a perfect tank top for beginners to make that want to start making interesting patterns and want to start getting into more complex pieces. You must know how to knit in garter stitch, stockinette stitch, how to cast on, cast off and sew. You can use a tapestry or yarn needle to weave in ends. This tank top fits a child who wears size 5-6.




Size: Child 5-6

Materials:

  • Size 11 single-point knitting needles
  • Red Heart Comfort 100g yarn in green
  • US size 7 crochet needle
  • Scissors
  • Stitch holder or another single-point knitting needle

 



Instructions:

  1. Cast on 40 stitches. Knit in garter stitch for 12 rows.
  2. Knit in stockinette stitch for 2 rows.
  3. Knit in garter stitch for 12 rows.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until piece measures 13 inches, ending on garter stitch.
  5. Knit 13 stitches in garter stitch and put them on a stitch holder.
  6. Cast off 14 stitches. Knit last 13 stitches in garter stitch.
  7. Knit in garter stitch until strap measures 1 inch. Cast off. 
  8. Remove stitch holder on future strap. Cut yarn, join it to the other 13 stitches.
  9. Knit in garter stitch until the strap measures 1 inch. 
  10. Bind off, weave in ends.
  11. Repeat steps 1 to 10.
  12. Press two pieces together so the patterns are facing one another.
  13. Sew the shoulder straps together.
  14. Sew the sides, leaving 4 inches for the arm holes. 
  15. Weave in ends. Turn inside out. Your tank top is done!



This is perfect to keep your child warm while letting their arms stay cool. Perfect for light summer weather, fall and spring. You can also put it on top of a thin long-sleeved top. This piece will get better with age as it grows with your child, stretches where it needs to so it ensures the perfect fit. If you have a younger child, you can pass it off to them when they reach this size, or have them wear it as an oversized tank.

 

Reversible Striped Tank Top Knitting Pattern

Posted by Live Love Mom on June 26, 2020 at 9:20 AM Comments comments (2)

by: Stephanie McEndree


This knitting pattern can either be a size L-XL dress for a child, or a size XS-S tank top for adults. In order to do this pattern, you will need to know the garter stitch, the stockinette stitch, how to cast on, how to cast off, and how to weave in ends. You can use a tapestry or yarn needle to weave in ends, but I tend to use a crochet needle since that's what I have on hand. You can make both sides of this piece the same length so the collar is the same, or you can make one side longer to make the front or back collar more low-cut. This piece is best worn loose, so you can knit it a size up to make it nice and airy during the summer. It's also completely reversible, so you can wear a striped tank or a garter stitch tank all in one piece.


Size: Adult XS or children's L-XL

Guage: 5 stitches = 1 inch


Items needed:


Red Heart Comfort Yarn 1000g in red

Size 11 single point knitting needles

US size 7 crochet needle

Scissors

Stitch holder or another single point knitting needle


Instructions:

  1. Cast on 50 stitches. 
  2. Knit in garter stitch for 6 rows.
  3. Knit in stockinette stitch for 6 rows.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 until piece measures about 15 inches, ending on stockinette stitch.
  5. Knit in garter stitch for about 5 inches, or until piece measures 20 inches.
  6. Knit 15 stitches. Place them in a stitch holder or another knitting needle.
  7. Cast off 20 stitches. 
  8. Knit remaining 15 stitches in garter stitch.
  9. Continue knitting until strap measures 4 inches. 
  10. Cut off the yarn so it measures 5 inches. Weave it in with the crochet needle.
  11. Remove stitch holder and place it on the strap. Join yarn with the future 2nd strap.
  12. Place the knitting needle on the other 15 stitches and stitck in garter stitch for 4 inches.
  13. Knit the 15 stitches of the strap. Cast on 20 stitches.
  14. Remove the stitch holder and place your free needle through the first strap's stitches. Knit them in garter stitch.
  15. Knit in garter stitch for about 5 inches.
  16. Knit in stockinette stitch for 6 rows.
  17. Knit in garter stitch for 6 rows.
  18. Repeat steps 16 and 17 until that side of the piece measures 23 inches.
  19. Bind off. Flip inside out so the striped pattern is facing inwards.
  20. Match up the hem. Sew in the sides, leaving a 4 inch (for a child's dress) to 7 inch hole (for adult tank top) for the arms.
  21. Weave in the ends. Turn inside-out, and your piece is done.
Try on your tank top or put the dress on your child! See how they like it. It's perfect for those hot summer months, and can be worn on top of a long-sleeved cotton shirt during the spring or fall. 

How To Celebrate Your Anniversary During The Pandemic

Posted by Live Love Mom on June 19, 2020 at 9:10 AM Comments comments (5)
by: Stephanie McEndree




Here are ways to celebrate your wedding or relationship anniversary during the pandemic.

Turn up the music. Turn on the song to your first wedding dance and dance your wedding dance together. See if you can remember the steps off the top of your head, no practicing and no cheating! If you make some mistakes you can laugh about it together.

Cake time. If you saved the top of your wedding cake at the wedding, bust it out and eat it together. If not, ask the bakery to make one like your old wedding cake but in a smaller portion for two. 

Reminisce. Look through your wedding album and flip through your wedding photos. Pick out your favorite moments and memories and chat about them together. Watch your wedding video and honeymoon video if you have them, cuddle up under some blankets and hold hands. 

Break out the bubbly. Have a private toast together and drink champagne. Treat yourselves to mimosas in the morning. Pair your favorite wine with some savory dinner. Light some candles and eat by candle light, and play some soft music if you'd like. 

Order memories. Order some food from the caterer you used at your wedding, bonus if you choose the meal you had on your wedding day. You can have a picnic in your backyard, eat on your patio furniture or even indoors on the living room floor with a blanket. 

Make it fancy. Go out to dinner at your favorite fancy restaurant and order your favorite meal. Bonus if they have dim lighting. 

Write it out. Write a letter about your favorite moments of your first year of marriage. Trade each other's letters and read them.

Renew your vows. Have a small self-officiated ceremony in your backyard, or even in your home. Recite your wedding vows together and add in some new ones. You can even throw in some humorous vows in there such as, you promise to help him look for things that are right in front of him. Have a good laugh together and make it your own.

Make love. Bust out some massage oil, sprinkle rose petals on the bed and in the bath, have a bubble bath together, play some sensual music, light scented candles and make sweet love.

Stay the night at a hotel. Often, brides and grooms stay at a hotel the night of the wedding, or the night before. Go back to that hotel and stay there again to reminisce. If you didn't like that hotel, choose one in town and make it a staycation. Relax, let the staff clean your room for you, and order in some room service and have some spa services if they're available. If you have the cash to spend, splurge for a 5 star hotel with a jaccuzi, hot tub, pool, sauna, gym, fancy restaurant and massage therapy.

Got more ideas? Post them below!

Celebrate Your Birthday During Coronavirus

Posted by Live Love Mom on June 12, 2020 at 9:15 AM Comments comments (1)

by: Stephanie McEndree


Wondering how you can celebrate your birthday during a lockdown complete with social distancing? Are these times with the coronavirus making you wonder how you can still have a nice birthday? Are you wanting to celebrate your birthday without putting your health or anyone else's health at risk? You've come to the right place! Here we explore different ways you can still have a great time while also keeping everyone healthy and safe. If you are someone planning a birthday for your loved one during the pandemic, here are some good ideas for you as well.


Have a video call conference. Call all your friends and family into one place, or one at a time. They are sure to sing you happy birthday, wish you happy birthday and want to celebrate. Reminisce over the old times and walk down memory lane. Talk about your favorite moments together.


Get some balloons. If you want, have some balloons you can blow up or get some already filled up. It will give your place some ambiance and help you get into the headspace that this is a celebration. Turn on your favorite music if you like.


Bake a cake. Get some ingredients together or even just a cake mix, and bake a birthday cake of your choice. Don't feel like baking? Get one at the grocery store that's already pre-made. Get your favorite flavor, and make it festive with sprinkles and candles. Blow them out and make a wish!


Spend time with your housemates. Whether you live with family or friends, now is the time to take advantage of their presence. Cuddle with your significant other, play with your kids, enjoy time with your friends. Play board games, watch tv, go for a walk. 


Go to a drive-through. Get some takeout or go to a drive-through so you can get some hot food. Eat your favorites! Some places even offer free dessert if it's your birthday. Just show them your ID! Be sure to wear gloves and a mask when you go out just to be safe.


Go to a drive-in movie. You can go to a drive-in movie if they are open where you live. Stay cozy in your vehicle and watch a good movie outside. You can also put camping chairs outside and bring some popcorn and soda and some blankets.


Have a picnic. Go in your front or backyard or even in the living room. Place a blanket on the ground and have a nice picnic. You can have some grapes, cheese and crackers with some deli meats or have some sandwiches, salad, whatever you like.


Look at the stars. Lay on a blanket or in a sleeping bag and watch the stars. In August, there are even shooting stars and if you live up north you can admire the northern lights. You can look up constellations first, then try to find them in the sky. There are even some apps that help you identify and locate them. 


Got any more ideas? Comment below!

Two Rectangle Stockinette Stitch Oversized Kids Dress

Posted by Live Love Mom on June 5, 2020 at 9:15 AM Comments comments (5)

by: Stephanie McEndree




This piece is perfect for beginners wanting to make their first dress. It's not as large as it would be for an adult, so it's a perfect way to start and it's not too much work to where you get discouraged. You need to know how to cast on, bind off, the garter stitch, the stockinette stitch and how to sew. This piece is knit flat, which is also ideal for beginners. Stockinette stitch gives this piece a thinner feel and look, and without sleeves makes it suitible for summer wear. With how loose it is and oversized, it allows the dress to be airy and doesn't let the kids be too hot in it. 




Size: 6-7 years, oversized

Items needed:

-Size 11 single point knitting needles
-Red Heart Comfort 1000g yarn in red, 1 skein
-US size 7 crochet needle
-Scissors




Kntting pattern:

 

  1. Cast on 50 stitches
  2. Knit rows 1-10 in garter stitch
  3. Knit in stockinette stitch until piece measures about 18 inches
  4. Knit next 10 rows in garter stitch. Piece should measure about 20 inches.
  5. Bind off, cut the yarn with the scissors 5 inches from the piece. The piece will be used to sew in shoulder strap.
  6. Repeat steps 1-5 with 2nd piece.
  7. Turn piece so that the garter stitch sides are facing outwards, and the pattern inwards.
  8. Sew the seams together at the shoulders, at least 4 inches from each side.
  9. Leaving a 4 inch hold from the shoulders for the arms, sew the sides together with a crochet needle. Tie off.
  10. Cut the end of the string about 5 inches from the piece. Sew in ends with a crochet needle.
  11. Turn the piece inside-out, and you have your finished piece.


If you try this pattern, be sure to show us a photo in the comments and how you like the pattern! Personally, this was my first dress! I knew I was good with the garter stitch as I made the sweater, and I wanted to try a different pattern. My husband said he likes the edges on the dress so it gives it a nice pattern and is different from using just the garter stitch. I also like that it's sewn together at the top, since dresses with straps like a tank-top seem to fall off the shoulders of my girls all too often! This way it stays nice and secure so my girls can play hard and still have their dress in place! It fits well below their knees so they will be able to wear it for a long time.

 


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