Wednesday, April 1, 2015

5 Ways to Make Exercising a Priority in Your Life...

5 Ways to Make Exercising a Priority in Your Life...


As promised, I am back today with another video to get you all motivated in this fun challenge we have starting this month. I love all the comments and shout outs you have been sending my way. I love knowing that so many of you are joining the healthy fun! We are totally going to rock this!! 

To get you started on the right foot, I have compiled my top 5 ways to make this "getting active" thing work for you. These are the tips that have helped me over the past month in a half to get active and lose 20 pounds. I hope they will help you as well!


Be sure to leave your own tips and tricks as well in the comments below! I love hearing all your ideas!

XO Danielle

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

March Snapshots...

Here are some of my favorite snapshots from this month. I am trying to be more intentional in the pictures I take. I may not have a fancy camera (I use my phone), but I can capture the moments of the season of life we are in. The weather is warming up, which means clothes drying faster out on the line (I love that). I pulled the curtain down in our kitchen, to let in all that beautiful sunlight. We have taken advantage of a lot of the fun activities our library has for the littles...like a Lego club challenge, which Libby won this month. We've made some delicious recipes this month like pumpkin-raisin oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and kiwi fruit salad. . We also went on a lot of bike rides, scored some free clothes from Schoola, went on a bubble run, and kept up with our "a picture each Sunday".

I am thankful for all these little moments in my life. By themselves they may seem ordinary and mundane, but those dirty dishes and those family game nights are where it is at. They are the moments we will cherish as those littles grow.

I am thankful for this season I am. I pray whatever season you are in, you find a way to capture the littles moments. Those little moments, make up huge parts of our lives.













I hope your month has been a fantastic one! See you in April!

XO Danielle

Monday, March 30, 2015

April's Challenge to Get Fit and Healthy #Activein30

April's Challenge to Get Fit and Healthy #Activein30

Oh man lovelies!!!! I am so excited for this month's challenge! I dropped the ball in March, but I am back with a fun challenge to get us all looking and feeling our best!! I'm sure you can tell from all those exclamation points that this mama is pretty darn excited for the "Get Fit and Healty" Challenge this month!



XO Danielle

Where we get better....

Where we get better....

Yesterday, while in sunday school, an intersting thought was shared. We were talking about "The Word of Wisdom". As a class we were discussing the should and should nots of what we should eat, drink, and do. We talked about how certain things like drugs and alcohol are not just  harmful to our bodies, but our spirits as well. As we sat and discussed, a gentlemen raised his hand and shared this thought...

He said that we don't always know what someone is going through. It could be an addiction, a great trial, or something else. We never know because we all go through so much each day. Then he compared the Gospel of Christ to a hospital. Hospitals are places where we go to get better, when we have fallen ill. We could have any number of sicknesses, that can be to any degree, but it is at the hospital or through the aid of doctors that we can be made better again. Isn't this much like what our Savior does for us?

Where we get better....

We are all broken. We all face flaws, short comings, and many trials. Everyday we go through something, great or small, that tries us. We may not always know what problems the person next to us is going through, but there is one who does. Our Savior, Jesus Christ does. He is the only one that can truly make our spirits whole again.

I absolutely love this idea of church being a hospital for the sick. It is a place for all. No one is immune to what the world can do to us. I know I often feel that I fall short in all that I want to be. I think as a Mama it is very easy to feel this way. We want to get so much done in one day, but often there are just not enough hours in the day.

Where we get better....

We go through trials, some great and some small, but either way we go through them. I hope that we all know that we do not have to go through them alone. We can all receive the help that we need through our loving Savior.

Never forget how wonderfully special you are. Never forget that we are all struggling...we are ALL imperfect, but through Christ we are lifted up and made a better version of ourselves.

I pray your week is a good one. I am hoping to hop back on here and get some more posts scheduled for the week. I've been in the kitchen gearing up for a new month of shopping. I am editing pictures for that post now. Keep your fingers crossed I get my keester back on this laptop and get it posted for ya'll. I'll try real hard :)

Where we get better....


God Bless!

XO Danielle

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Our Garden: Spring 2015



Recently we started gearing up for spring planting.  I bought my seeds, seedlings, soil, and got to planting.

Hubby built me two planter boxes out of our old wood flooring. He also was such a peach and showed me how to work his drill, so I could make a box myself. I shared that triumph on instagram this past weekend. I have big dreams for our yard. I want planter boxes and green everywhere. I have a dream of us being able to sustain ourselves someday. I know we do not have a farm by any means, but it would be really cool to provide ourselves with as much of those veggie basics as we can.



For right now though, I  am starting off small. I am continuing on from where I left off last year. Last year was not so good when the summer heat came. Most of our plants died, except the aloe vera. That stuff is tough and made it through 100+ degree weather. This year I have done more research and decided that the harsh soil of the desert may not be the best for my sweet plants, which is why we are doing planter boxes, with store bought soil. It is suppose to be better for the plants out here in the hot desert.



I am excited for this gardening journey. I am a newbie people, but I have a lot of passion, so I hope that counts for something. We all have to be passionate about something right?

I do plan to share my progress, so over the years I can see what worked and what didn't. I also will try to include as many pictures as possible, because well when I see those plants grow and bloom, I am one happy mama!




I get all kinds of giddy people!!


This year we planted:

beef steak tomato plant x2
cherry tomato plant x2
zucchini plant x3
pumpkin plant x1
garden bean plants x6 (growing these from seed and keeping my fingers crossed)
jalapeno pepper plants x6
bell pepper plant x1
chile pepper x1
cilantro x2
lettuce x2
red cabbage x1
cauliflower x1
oregano x1
basil x1
green onions x4
garlic x3
and lots of pretty flowers- African Marigolds, butterflygrass, snap dragons, and daisies

We also have three aloe vera pants from last summer still going strong


I am so excited for this new planting season and I am so hopeful. I pray that God will watch over our little garden and help it to grow and thrive. In the mean time, I plan on building more planter boxes for us in the Fall. I am kind of tapped out on my garden budget for this season, so any other plans will have to wait for the fall.

What have you guys been up to in the garden?

XO Danielle

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Changes Around the Blog...

Changes Around the Blog...

We are all busy Mamas, running from here and there to take care of that family of ours. A lot of time we are beat before the dinner hour even arises. Because of that I wanted to create a space where ladies and gents, could find recipes, meal plans, and frugal living tips and tricks to help our families #takebackmealtime and encourage ourselves to live a frugal debt free life.

On Blissful and Domestic, you will not only be able to access my main blog page (what you see now), but a few other blog pages as well. These pages will help your lives continue to be more organized, debt free, and happier. From recipes, to meal plans, to homeschooling tips and tricks, you will be able to find it all on Blissful and Domestic. I am in the process of working hard to create these pages, so you are able to access more goodness to help your family succeed in living well on less.

We can all do more this year to help our families and I hope I can encourage you along the way with my posts and videos.

Know that we are all on this frugal journey together.

Have a fabulous day lovelies!!

Oh and I just filmed a new youtube video. I hope to upload it today. Woot! Woot!

XO Danielle

Important Steps to Home Ownership

This post brought to you by U.S. Bank
The content and opinions expressed below are that of Blissful and Domestic.

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So, you’re ready to make the big leap into home ownership? Good for you. Home ownership can be a great experience and holds a number of tangible and intangible benefits. But first, you need to actually buy that property, which, especially if this is your first home, can feel more than a little complicated.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

A Day in the Life of Mel...

A Day in the Life of Mel...

Good Morning Lovelies! Today you are invited to spend a day in the life of her. 

You know that gal who you might think has it all together. The mama who seems to do it all. Well guess what? She doesn't. Let's fight those lies. This new series is an effort to get rid of the "super mom"  image that we all make for ourselves in our heads. It is a time to inspire one another even more. We do not have to always have it together to be good moms, wives, and women in sisterhood!

I have invited some wonderful women to share their story with us and to be real with y'all. They will share their struggles, their victories, their frustrations, their joys, and everything in between. It may not be glamorous, but it is real and real is absolutely beautiful 

Come walk a bit in the shoes of another....
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Today started much like any other day – I wake before the alarm goes off at 6am but still usually wait until I actually hear it before getting out of bed! I like to check my emails, Instagram and Facebook accounts on my phone before getting out of bed. (I know, not good. But hey, who knows when I am going to get another chance, and I like to know what has been going on in the world while I have been sleeping).
I go downstairs and make a cup of tea, prepare breakfast for Mr 3 and make sure his bag is all packed ready for nursery. Some days I might get a chance to catch up with some emails, write a blog post or go to the gym, but today I spend some time writing a note to a friend and wrapping her new baby gift that I need to get in the mail today. Whatever I do, I always check my diary. I love this little bit of “me time” before the days gets going.

A Day in the Life of Mel...

At 7am I wake Mr 3 with a cuddle and tickles, we play for a few minutes and then make our way downstairs together.

A Day in the Life of Mel...


Once Mr 3 is settled eating his breakfast, my husband takes over and I get showered and ready for work. By 7.45am Mr 3 is washed, dressed and ready to go, so we jump in the car, say goodbye to Daddy and start our day.
Nursery is only five minutes’ drive away and we talk about the shapes in the clouds on the way. We have some great conversations on the way to nursery, some of which I note down when I get back in the car for my Project Life album.

A Day in the Life of Mel...


 Once Mr 3 is happily in his class with his friends, I jump back in my car and head off to work. On a good day it takes 20 minutes, but it can be up to an hour on a bad day. This is Dubai after all, and the traffic can be very unpredictable! On the way to work I review the goals I have set the night before, and start planning my day. All whilst singing along to whatever song the local radio station is playing!

A Day in the Life of Mel...
If I’m lucky I get into work at 8.45am, catch up with my team, get out the to-do list and crack on. My favourite kind of day is one with a couple of meetings, plenty of time to work, maybe a quick lunch with a friend or at least the chance to take 30 minutes to read or write while I am eating my lunch. I try to bring my lunch with me to work, but today was a big fail and I ordered a healthy salad which I ate whilst writing a letter to my grandmother. I love writing letters – email is great but there is nothing like a proper letter. I pop to the post office and mail the new baby gift too. That’s another thing crossed off my to-do list, which always makes me happy.

A Day in the Life of Mel...

At 4.30pm I leave the office and head back to nursery to pick up Mr 3. I call a friend on the way for a chat – I try to speak to my parents or a friend each day when I drive home, to make good use of the time. Mr 3 loves nursery and it is fun to watch him play while I chat with his teacher and the other mums for a few minutes. The drive home brings more questions from the little guy. Today’s big question was “How many T-Rexs would have to stand on top of each other to reach the top of the Burj Khalifa?” The Burj Khalifa is the tallest building in the world, and we are lucky enough to live in the same city and see it from our house. It’s often a topic of conversation! We get home at about 5.30pm, work out the Burj Khalifa question (the answer is 138, in case you were wondering!) and play snakes and ladders while Daddy cooks dinner. I also unpack our bags, putting the lunchboxes in the dishwasher and taking out any artwork. I like to put the date on the back before sticking it up in our “gallery” (the kitchen door). Eventually it gets photographed and scrapbooked, but that’s another story! We share the cooking duties, as we share pretty much all the household tasks, which makes life much easier for both of us. Opening the front door to the smell of a good chicken curry is also a bonus!
We eat dinner at about 6pm all together at the table. This is one of my favourite times of day, when we sit down together and tell each other about our day. This is so important as the three of us are apart all day, experiencing different challenges and learning new things, which we like to share when we get back together again. We don’t cook separate meals for Mr 3, so this is also a good time to introduce him to new foods and talk about healthy eating and where food comes from. We love eating in this house! Apart from the Burj Khalifa question, tonight we also talk about what we’ll do at the weekend, the Oscars and the constellation Orion which Mr 3 discovered with Daddy last weekend.
Once dinner is finished we all help to clear the table and load the dishes in the dishwasher. There is leftover chicken curry and rice, which goes straight into Mr 3’s lunchbox for tomorrow. I pack his snacks too and put it all in the fridge, ready for tomorrow morning. Packing the lunches the night before saves so much time the next morning, and I like to clean the counters and kitchen sink before finishing up. 
After some more snakes and ladders, I bath Mr 3, read a bedtime story and then lie with him for 10 minutes while he drops off to sleep. He’s such a cutie but I am ready for him to sleep tonight, as I have more work to do from home and a blog post to finish. My husband is also working on his computer so we chat away while we are working. It’s been a busy day and I would much rather watch TV or do some scrapbooking, but I have some things to prepare for tomorrow in the office and I know that my day will be much smoother tomorrow if I get ready tonight. I always try to clear my emails and write tomorrow’s to-do list each evening, so that I can hit the ground running in the morning.

A Day in the Life of Mel...

I turn off the laptop and head to bed at around 10.30pm, pretty much my usual time - I need my beauty sleep! I fall asleep knowing that I’ve had a productive day, spent time with my family and spoken to a few friends. I’m ready for tomorrow, when we’ll start all over again! Good night!

Mel Carruthers

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Thank you so much Mel for sharing a little bit about you and your sweet family:)


Find more A Day in The Life of Her HERE 

If you would like to be a part of the "A Day in The Life of Her" series, shoot me an email. I'd love to have you!

blissful_and_domestic@yahoo.com

XO Danielle  

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