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Thank You + Goodbye

 There really aren't words to tie this off in a neat little bow. How do you walk away from something that has been such a huge part of your life for almost ten years. A decade. I've lived my life, my marriage, my kid's life all online for the last ten years. In ten years you've seen Derek and I get married, have our children, move from Utah to North Carolina, to Georgia, and back to Utah. We've bought houses, rented houses, remodeled houses, swore we were never moving again, only to do exactly that time and time again. 





The last several weeks I've been heavily contemplating what I want for my life long term, and this space online has always come back to me with a question mark floating over head. I've "quit" blogging before, as you can see from a dramatic post written in 2015, but this time it's not like that. I love blogging, and writing online is something that I will always love in a way, but having it linked so closely to my personal life has been something that's been more and more difficult for me, especially as my kids get older and I want to respect their privacy as much as possible. 

It's also taken a toll on my mental health in a way that I've only realized recently, and it's something I'm not really wanting to sacrifice anymore. Having the money I make be linked so closely to my personality, parenting, choices I do or don't make for my family, and always having to walk on eggshells to feel like I'm appeasing the masses takes a toll after a while. I've come to realize that I don't need to be doing it, so why am I? 


When I tried quitting blogging in 2015 I was walking away from my only source of income. I didn't have a plan moving forward and I didn't know if this online business I'd created was replicable, and maybe I'd just gotten lucky to be where I was. I ultimately needed this space for five more years while different pieces of my life fell into place. 


Five years later I have a job outside of blogging that provides me with a consistent income the way this never really has. That income is less than the inconsistent income I make here, but it's stable and I know it's something I can rely on as I move into this new chapter of my online presence. 


This year I've created two new websites. Neither one of them have to do with family, fashion, products, lifestyle,  etc... You won't be sold on the next best thing you do or don't need in your life. Many of you know several weeks ago I launched advocatingmoms.com a website geared towards connecting parents to online resources to help with raising a child with a disability. This is something I will continue to push my energy into over the coming months and years. 


I've also created another website, singleservingsize.com. It's a niche food site specializing in recipes that are only single servings. This website will hopefully overtime replace the revenue stream that this site once created for me. It allows me to still have the fun parts of blogging that I love, photographing food, writing recipes, and having a creative outlet that is far less attached to my personality and whether the person on the other side of the screen likes me and whatever topic I'm talking about. Food is food, and it's consistently the one part of blogging I've always loved. 


Moving forward there will likely not be new content shared on this space. As someone who knows first hand how much life changes, I'll never say never, but this is a door that I am closing for right now. The website will still stay up. I'll still be paying for my domain name each year, and you'll still see my name pop up on google or pinterest every now and then when you search for things, but otherwise, this is me saying goodbye. 


I don't know what will happen to my Instagram account. I have new accounts linked to my new sites. I've loved the connections I've made through this IG the last several years. I don't want to delete the entire account and lose the photos and memories I've shared. I think in time I may just change the settings to private. I still love sharing random things that happen in our lives through IG stories and connecting with people in a different way over there... So I honestly don't know what will come of that, but having the freedom to not care about my feed, aesthetic, stats, etc... is something I'm really looking forward to over the coming weeks. 


Thank you for being a part of my life for the last decade. Thank you for standing by me and my family and the content I've created. There is still so much more to come, just in a way that feels better to my life goals, and my mental and emotional well being. I'm grateful for the tools and knowledge I've gained through blogging the last ten years that has given me the confidence to know I can do something new. 


This is so hard and there is a part of me that will grieve this space. It's feels as though I'm loosing a part of my identity that I've held onto with a vice grip for the last ten years. As hard as it is to let go of it though, I know that there is so much more for me out there, and letting go of one thing is giving me the opportunity to have less stress, more focus, more direction, less compromised time with my children that doesn't involve waving a camera in their faces, and a world of opportunity. 


Thank you for being here with me and giving me the opportunity to learn and grow alongside all of you these last 10 years. I hope you'll follow along in the new endeavors, but I'm grateful for the time we've had together if this is where we part ways as well. 

How to Feed a Picky Eater with Oroweat Organic Bread

 This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx on behalf of Oroweat Organic Bread.


Like many parents I think we've all questioned at some point or another how to feed a picky eater. Both of my kids don't really love food, and I have to go out of my way to make sure they're getting the nutrients they need into their little bodies. These are my best tips for getting my personal picky eaters to eat more of their food, and get some good vitamins, minerals, and other key nutrients into their system so they can feel good and do the things they love!

The Best Organic Bread

My kids like basic foods, so I'm always looking to make sure that the foods I'm giving them are the best options possible, with a wide nutrient profile. When making something simple like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, I'm often looking for the all natural peanut butter, organic jam, and of course, Oroweat Organic White Made With Whole Wheat Bread for our kids.


My kids love this bread because it's super yummy with a soft and smooth texture, and Disney's Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse on the package doesn't hurt either! I love it because it's plant-based and provides a good source of vitamins A, D, and E. Oroweat Organic Bread is sustainably baked with renewable wind energy, and 11% of their revenue goes to support environmental causes.


Oroweat Organic Bread is an all around good company that I feel good about supporting from a flavor and nutrition standpoint, but from a business standpoint as well. 

Make Food Fun

Sometimes it helps to make food fun! If you're trying to get your children to enjoy something simple like a sandwich, try cutting it into a fun shape with a cookie cutter, or better yet, let your child get in on the action and do it themselves! Giving kids autonomy over their food, and letting them be involved in the cooking process can go such a long way in actually getting them to consume their food. It's something that we've done with Kyle and Kinsley for a couple years now and it's helped them to not only be more independent, but to get them to try new things as well. 


Give Food Choices

One rule that we have in our house is that our kids have to have a fruit or veggie with that meal. However, I often let them pick between a couple of options. At lunch time I might ask, "Do you want apples or oranges today?" They know they have to eat a fruit, but they're ten times more likely to actually eat it if they get to pick it themselves. I try to give options as much as possible because I think it shows the kids that I value their opinion, respect their tastes, and let them explore what they want to be eating instead of me forcing it onto them. 

Serve Familiar Foods with New Foods:

If I'm trying to get the kids to eat something new like celery and ranch, I'll serve it with something they're familiar with like PBJ on Oroweat Organic for Kids White Bread made with Whole Wheat. That way they have something that's tasty, familiar, and nutritious on their plate to eat along side the new food that they're trying. This makes things a little less intimidating for them, and also gives peace of mind that if they don't eat or like the new food, they at least have something familiar on their plate to eat too!

What are some of your favorite tips for picky eaters? I'd love to hear in the comments below!

If you liked this post, How to Feed a Picky Eater with Oroweat Organic Bread,  you might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects. 

FREE Valentine Bookmark Printable

 If you have a child who loves all things reading, this FREE Valentine Bookmark Printable will be the perfect card for them to share with classmates this year!


If you've been around for more than two seconds over here, you'll know Kyle is obsessed with books and reading. When most other kids were playing with toys over Christmas break, Kyle had observed that he had 109 books in his bedroom, and was determined to read all of them before he returned back to school in January. 


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With Valentine's right around the corner, I thought it would be so fun and perfect to make a free Valentine bookmark printable to share with all of you, and for Kyle to handout at school. Now admittedly, Kyle found some Minecraft Valentine's that he's really jazzed to give his friends, but he has several teachers this school year, and he's 100% giving these bookmark Valentine's to them at their classroom party. 


Free Valentine Bookmark Printable:

This Valentine bookmark printable is pretty simple to make and cut out. There are two different color formats, a pink and purple template, and a red and blue template. To make these you'll simply print them out on card stock, and then using scissors or a paper cutter, cut along the thick black line to cut them out. 


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You can then leave the bookmarks as is, or you can do a hole punch at the top and add a ribbon. for a fun extra touch. You could also laminate them for extra durability. 


To download these free Valentine's Day Bookmark Cards, please click the large download link below. 


Best All in One Wireless Printer:

I bought the Epsom EcoTank Printer back in February 2020 and it's by far been one of the best purchases I've made. While the initial cost might be high, I can say that I've used this a ton and have not had to purchase new ink yet! The ink that the printer comes with is enough ink to print 4,000 colored pages and 7,500 black and white images. It is seriously the best feeling to not have to worry about running out of ink and being able to use your printer whenever you need it!

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If you liked this post, FREE Valentine Bookmark Printable, you might also like:


Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects.

Valentines Day Coloring Pages PDF

This free Valentine's Day Coloring Pages PDF is the perfect activity to print with kids at home! Enjoy coloring pages, word searches, color by number, and more!


With Valentine's Day a month away, I figured it was perfect timing to launch my Valentine's Day coloring pages PDF. This is the sixth installment of coloring pages I've produced over the last year, and I love that I challenge myself to learn new skills with each set that I put out. This month I'm excited to share a new color by number picture, and a Valentine's word search! 


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Valentines Day Coloring Pages PDF:

This pack of coloring pages consists of six different pictures that you can print right from the comfort of your home computer. This set includes four Valentine's Day themed pictures, one heart shaped color by number coloring sheet, and a Valentine's Day word search. I think my very favorite picture of all though would have to be the unicorn! It's the most detailed picture I've done so far, and I had so much fun putting that one together (even though I had to completely redo it twice!)

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How to Print Valentine's Day Coloring Pages PDF:

To print these coloring pages simply scroll down to the bottom of this post where you'll see a large link to click. It will take you to a google drive where you can click the down arrow in the top right corner to download these to your computer. From there you can print the PDF as you normally would!


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Best All in One Wireless Printer:

I bought the Epsom EcoTank Printer back in February 2020 and it's by far been one of the best purchases I've made. While the initial cost might be high, I can say that I've used this a ton and have not had to purchase new ink yet! The ink that the printer comes with is enough ink to print 4,000 colored pages and 7,500 black and white images. It is seriously the best feeling to not have to worry about running out of ink and being able to use your printer whenever you need it!

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Click Here to Download Valentine's Day Coloring Pages PDF


If you liked this post, Valentine's Day Coloring Pages PDF, you might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects!

Homemade Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Homemade chocolate covered strawberries are super easy to make, way cheaper than purchasing at the store, and make the perfect treat for Valentine's Day!


Chocolate covered strawberries are the highlight treat during the month of February. While purchasing them and having them delivered to your home is easy and convenient, I much prefer making homemade chocolate covered strawberries. When you make them on your own you can control the cost, you know how fresh the strawberries were before you dipped them, and you get to customize them to your own preferences. 


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Homemade Chocolate Covered Strawberries:

Making homemade chocolate covered strawberries is super easy! All you need to do is microwave your chocolate in 30 second increments, stirring in between. Then you simply dip your strawberries, shake off the excess chocolate, and then let them harden on some wax paper. From there you can decorate with different drizzles, sprinkles, cookie crumbs, nuts, etc... 


How to Store Chocolate Covered Strawberries:

Chocolate covered strawberries are best stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. This will help preserve the strawberries the longest and prevent them from getting mushy before you get around to finishing them all. 

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Cheap Chocolate Covered Strawberries Under $20:

I was able to get everything I need to make these strawberries for under $20 and one trip to the grocery store. After purchasing everything I needed, my total cam to exactly $19 before tax, and I'm able to make way more strawberries than I would get if I paid someone else $20 to make them. 


How Long Do Chocolate Covered Strawberries Last:

Chocolate covered strawberries will last in an airtight container in the fridge for 2-3 days. They're best definitely best within the first two days, but day three definitely won't kill you. You just want to make sure they're gone before the fruit gets mushy and bad on the inside. 

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Best Chocolate for Chocolate Covered Strawberries:

You could use a super expensive, high quality dark chocolate if you really wanted to. I on the other hand refer to use almond bark almost exclusively when I'm making anything that involves melting and dipping chocolate. Almond Bark is available in the baking isle of most grocery stores, is very inexpensive for over a pound of chocolate, and oddly enough, contains zero almonds. 

Almond Bark is made of Sugar, Oil, Cocoa, Soy Lecithin, Artificial Flavor, and Milk. Is it the highest quality chocolate? No. Will it give you cancer? Maybe (joking kind of). Is it cheap, melts well, tastes great, and works for any an all dipping chocolate situations, 100% yes. 


How To Decorate Chocolate Covered Strawberries:

Step One: Melt your chocolate in the microwave in 30 second increments stirring in between each session. 

Step Two: Dip your strawberries into the chocolate getting as close to the stem as possible, without actually getting the stem/leaves into the chocolate.

Step Three: Lay the chocolate covered strawberries onto some wax paper and allow the chocolate to harden. 

Step Four: Taking your Wilton Cookie Icing, make a back and forth drizzle design on each of the berries. For these, I did a drizzle with both the white and the pink icings. 

Step Five: Add a few sprinkles to the strawberries if desired. 

Step Six: Place the berries on a plate in the fridge to harden completely, about 1 hour. 



Yield: 12
Author: Paige Flamm
Homemade Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Homemade Chocolate Covered Strawberries

Homemade chocolate covered strawberries are super easy to make, way cheaper than purchasing at the store, and make the perfect treat for Valentine's Day!
Prep time: 15 MinInactive time: 1 HourTotal time: 1 H & 15 M

Ingredients

  • Strawberries
  • Almond Bark
  • Sprinkles
  • Cookie Icing

Instructions

  1. Melt your chocolate in the microwave in 30 second increments stirring in between each session.
  2. Dip your strawberries into the chocolate getting as close to the stem as possible, without actually getting the stem/leaves into the chocolate.
  3. Lay the chocolate covered strawberries onto some wax paper and allow the chocolate to harden.
  4. Taking your Wilton Cookie Icing, make a back and forth drizzle design on each of the berries. For these, I did a drizzle with both the white and the pink icings.
  5. Add a few sprinkles to the strawberries if desired.
  6. Place the berries on a plate in the fridge to harden completely, about 1 hour.


If you like this post, Homemade Chocolate Covered Strawberries, you might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects.

Week 1 Recap of 2021

We're a week into 2021 and the memes all over the internet are already saying 2021 isn't going to be much different than 2020. I'm holding out hope that the world can still turn this around and that we can get everything moving in the right direction. One of my goals in 2021 was to bring more of the family blogging aspect back to this... family blog. I'm excited to share the ups, downs, and all arounds of what this past week (and all weeks moving forward) looked like for our little family. 





Monday:

One goal that I made this year that I hadn't mentioned was starting therapy. I think so many people can benefit from it, and since I spent the entire last year advocating for children's mental health, I figured it was time to do the same for myself. Monday was my first session and I spent the following three days resolved to the fact that they screwed me up more than before I went in, but considering I'm a two time therapy drop out in the past, I'm resolved to stick this one out and not be a quitter in the name of pride... so we'll see how this goes over the next few weeks. 


Tuesday:

Kyle had speech therapy that we've been participating in for almost six months now. He has two more visits before we're done with our "episode of care" and he has just come so far from where he was last winter when we pulled him out of public school. The difference it's made is huge, and I'm so so proud of the hard work that he's done to get here!

Wednesday:

Kinsley had physical therapy for the first time since getting her casts off and she did so well! We set new goals for her to work on over the next 10 weeks before we take a four month break, and I'm so excited to say we'll be working on forearm crutches! The big goal we have for her in 2021 would be to not use the walker anymore and to use crutches full time. This is beyond anything we could have ever hopped for, so I'm excited to see how it works! Our main goal though for the next 10 weeks is to just stand with the crutches, and eventually progress from there. 

Thursday:

I was given new tasks to do with The Bamboo Brace and spent three solid hours working on that while the kids were at school. It filled my cup in all the best ways. I know I shouldn't tie my identity to work, and that I probably have problems because I like to work so much, but I seriously am so happy to have the opportunity to focus on that more in 2021 since my previous tasks diminished with the shutdown last year. Getting to jump back into that with both feet has been the best. 

Friday:

The kids have remote learning at home today. They both have schoolwork to do on the computer and then we get to spend the rest of the day playing. Derek has this Friday off so at some point he'll be on kid duty while I get work done. Friday's are usually our library day, and then we have "Fast Food Friday" in the evening where we get in the car and everyone gets to get whatever they want for dinner. It's a great time killer before bedtime, and it's something we've been doing for almost two years now. 

How was your week? I hope you're doing well and that this first week of the year has brought some good things to you and your family's life!

Spicy Chickpea Curry Recipe

 This spicy chickpea curry is the perfect vegan meal prep dish to make for lunch or dinner throughout the week.


A few years ago one of my new year goals was to eat a plant based diet for the entire year. That didn't last more than a couple months, but it has instilled a love of plant based cooking for me in my life, and more often than not I find myself reaching for plant based meals over anything else. This spicy chickpea curry is one that I've been making for the last several months. It's super easy to make, uses basic ingredients, and is perfect for meal prepping and eating throughout the week. 


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How to Make Vegan Chickpea Curry:

To make this curry recipe you're going to start with cooking your diced onion, minced garlic, carrots, red bell pepper, and green bell pepper together in a pan over medium heat and 1 tbsp oil. Once they have cooked gown and softened a bit, you'll add in all your spices, followed by the coconut milk and all remaining ingredients. Simmer on low heat for about 20 minutes until the carrots are tender, and serve.

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Chickpea Curry Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil

  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, Diced
  • 1 Green Pepper Diced
  • 2 Carrots, Sliced into small rounds
  • 1 Jalapeno
  • 1 Yellow Onion, Diced 
  • 3 tbsp Curry Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 cans Chickpeas, Drained
  • 1 14oz Can Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 1 14 oz Can Full Fat Coconut Milk
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Broth

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What to Serve with Chickpea Curry:

This can easily be eaten on it's own, but to round it out and make it a more complete meal, you could pair it with some white or brown rice on the side. I also love eating it with a toasted piece of sourdough bread. You could also switch it up with some different grains like couscous or quinoa. 


Spicy Chickpea Curry

Spicy Chickpea Curry
Yield: 6
Author: Paige Flamm
Prep time: 10 MinCook time: 30 MinTotal time: 40 Min
This spicy chickpea curry is the perfect vegan meal prep dish to make for lunch or dinner throughout the week.

Ingredients

Spicy Chickpea Curry
  • 1 tbsp Olive Oil
  • 4 cloves Garlic, Minced
  • 1 Red Bell Pepper, Diced
  • 1 Green Pepper Diced
  • 2 Carrots, Sliced into small rounds
  • 1 Jalapeno
  • 1 Yellow Onion, Diced
  • 3 tbsp Curry Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1/4 tsp Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 cans Chickpeas, Drained
  • 1 14oz Can Fire Roasted Tomatoes
  • 1 14 oz Can Full Fat Coconut Milk
  • 1/2 cup Vegetable Broth

Instructions

  1. In a large pot over medium heat cook your onion, garlic, red bell pepper, green bell pepper, jalapeno, and carrots in 1 tbsp oil (use more if needed), for five minutes until onions and peppers begin to soften. 
  2. Add in your curry powder, salt, and cayenne pepper, and cooke for about 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. 
  3. Next, add your chickpeas, fire roasted tomatoes, coconut milk, and vegetable broth to the mixture. Let the curry simmer for about 20-30 minutes, or until the carrots are tender and cooked through. 
  4. Serve over rice or your favorite grain!

If you liked this post, Spicy Chickpea Curry Recipe, you might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects.

Lessonface Review (Piano Pass First Month Free!)

Lessonface has the best online piano lessons through their Piano Pass program. You can get your first month free to try it out before you commit! 

While music isn't something that was huge in my life growing up, Derek comes from a long line of family members who can play instruments. Out of his nine siblings, all of them started playing the piano, and then eventually moved to another instrument like the saxophone, trombone, violin, etc... When Kyle turned 8 this year we knew we wanted to get him started with piano, and wound up finding the best online piano lessons through Lessonface and their Piano Pass program! 

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Lessonface Review:

I had never heard of Lessonface until 2020. I was a little hesitant having Kyle's first introduction to the piano being through online lessons, but it's actually worked out really well for us, and he's been progressing really well over the last 5-6 weeks since we started. 

Lessonface offers both private and group piano lessons. We've been using their Piano Pass program which has over 80 weekly lessons available, so there is bound to be something that works in your timeframe. Kyle does the kid's beginner class with Beverly every Sunday at 12pm. 

I also love that multiple people can all use the same account for the same one time monthly price. Meaning I can sign up to take a lesson at 6pm on Tuesday evenings for adult beginners, while Kyle is signed up for his class on Sunday afternoons, all for the same price. 

Lessonface is more than just piano lessons though! They offer lessons in almost any instrument imaginable. I prefer the group lessons just because it works with our budget and availability really well, but they have over 1,000 teachers that would love to work one-on-one with you or your children if that's something you're interested in too. 

They also recently launched a Guitar Pass program, which works the same way as the group piano lessons, only for the guitar instead. 

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How Much Does Piano Pass Cost:

Your first month of Piano Pass is $14.99, and then $30/mo after that. When you use my link you can get a $15 credit making your first month free! If you have multiple children playing the piano, this is the most cost effective option because you can get all of them playing the piano for that one time $30/month price instead of paying likely double that per child per month using a traditional in person instructor. 


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How Do Piano Pass Lessons Work? 

The day of Kyle's lesson we get an email from his teacher telling us where to print and download the course materials. We print off the needed music for the week, put it at the piano, and then click the button that says "join class". It pulls up a zoom meeting (you will need Zoom downloaded on your computer), and then the teacher and other students show up and the lesson begins. It takes a couple times to get used to the format of everything but it's second nature to us now!

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How to Have Multiple People on One Lessonface Account?

When I initially created our account it was just under my name. Because Kyle and I were both going to be doing lessons, I live chatted their customer service people from my Lessonface dashboard and they were able to make another section of the dashboard for Kyle specifically so that I'm now able to toggle back and forth between Kyle and myself. 

When I click on Kyle's dashboard this is what it looks like. I can click that blue button that says help to chat with someone who can add more users to my account. In the right hand column under classes I can see all the lessons Kyle is signed up for, and when I click that red switch back button, it will take me to my own personal dashboard. 

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To access your weekly materials, you click on the class in the "classes" section that you'll be attending. From there it will take you to that class page. There will be a bolded section that says, "class materials", and a link you can click to download the needed pdfs for the lesson. On the class page is where you'll also click to join the lesson and have Zoom pop up!

How Often Do You Do Piano Practice?

We make Kyle practice 15 minutes per day after school and on weekends. We have a pretty laid out after school routine where he comes home, does homework, practices piano, does some sort of exercise (kids yoga, plays basketball, etc...), and then he can have screen time until dinner (usually about 30 minutes). He's pretty motivated to chill and watch TV so getting him to practice and do other stuff has never been a huge issue. 

We have loved our experience with Piano Pass so far! If you use this link you can get a $15 credit that can be used to make your first month of Piano Pass FREE! The credit can also be used towards Guitar Pass, or any private one-on-one lesson of your choice!

If you liked this post, Lessonface Review, you might also like:

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My 2021 Mantra of The Year + Goals

Welcome to 2021 my friends! Is it just me, or did you too wake up with a renewed sense of hope for the future and better days ahead? I feel hopeful at the optimism a new year can bring and can't wait to get started on some new goals.



I've really struggled with goal setting the last few years. I set really high goals for myself, and often achieve them, but they never change me in the way I hope they will. I keep thinking that if I check certain boxes that I'll have a better self-confidence, self-worth, that I'll feel more worthy of being a human being for doing certain things... and it's just not the case. In 2020 I've learned that no amount of athletic pursuit, work, or education will ever fill this need that I have to find value and worth from the outside world. 


In 2021 my hope is to do more things for my own personal happiness and development, and to stop chasing this ideal life that I think other people want me to have. So over the next 12 months I hope to work on several things to better myself, for no other reason than they bring me personal happiness, no strings attached. 


Go Skiing at Least 10 Times: 

We live within 45 minutes of at least three different ski resorts (Snowbasin, Nordic Valley, and Powder Mountain). Right after Christmas Derek and I went skiing for the first time in 10 years and I loved it so much. I want to take advantage of these mountains that are right at our fingertips, and hope to get Kyle into lessons and skiing this year too. We also got skis for Kinlsey and need to figure out the best and safest way to get her on the mountain as well. 


Practice The Piano Three Times a Week: 

We got a free piano from some friends when we moved this summer, and Kyle started taking lessons last month. I learned to play a little bit when we lived in Georgia and have been working through Kyle's lesson sheets along with him each week. I would like to learn to play a recital worthy piece by the end of the year that uses both hands and the pedal. 


Build An Accessible Wheelchair Ramp to Our Front Door:

We bought this house because it was basically one of the only houses available that checked most of the accessibility needs we had for Kinsley. That being said we have about 2-3 steps to get into the front of the house, and to go out to the backyard. Kinsley is getting to the point where it's hard for me to lift her, and I need Derek to carry her out to the car for me most mornings for school. Our hope is to get a concrete ramp poured this spring so that she can use her walker or wheelchair to get to the car on her own. She can get into the car without being lifted with minimal support, so a ramp will make this entire process about 95% hands off from me. 

One of Kinsley's classmate's parents owns a landscaping company and gave us a pretty good quote to get this done, we're hoping to use our stimulus check to make it a reality. Here is a little inspiration pic of what we're going for. 


Finish Furnishing the Main Living Area of Our House:

With the Christmas decorations gone, it's very clear that we have nothing in the upstairs of our house. We're hoping to give a little refresh to our kitchen with new cabinet doors and a coat of paint, a new light above the dining room table, some barstools, and maybe a new backsplash in the kitchen. This will do a lot to fill in the gaps we currently have. We also need to figure out a new TV stand situation because the one we have is too small for the space. 

Produce Three Blog Posts Per Week:

The last few years I've really struggled to figure out where I wanted this blog to go, and what the purpose was behind what I wanted to be doing. This last year I realized that food will always be a go-to over here, and that I love sharing seasonally focused content (book lists, holiday crafts/projects, monthly coloring pages, etc...) I want this space to be a go-to for family friendly related content. My plan is to share one recipe a week on Mondays, one seasonally related post on Wednesdays, and a family journal type post on Fridays. 

This feels really manageable for me and like something I can keep up on. There will certainly be posts that vary from that outline depending on brands I work with that might need something posted on a Tuesday or Thursday, or if I have a post I want to write about pets or finances that may vary from the previously mentioned topics, but the overall focus of what I want to be doing is there, and I have a lot of fun content already planned for January that I'm excited about! 

My 2021 Mantra:

A few weeks ago when I was on my treadmill I had this phrase, "fill in the cracks" come to my mind and I loved it so much. In February of 2019 my life slowly started unraveling at the seams and it didn't really stop until about the fall of that year. Without going into too much detail I'd basically found out that everything I believed about my life up until that point was based off of lies, I completed 57 college credits in a year for a degree in a field that I can't necessarily say I fully respect all the ideologies behind, and my faith had been shaken more than we were from the Utah earthquake of 2020. 

My hope in 2021 is that I can "fill in the cracks" and start to meaningfully piece my life back together. Sure what I once thought to be true about my life will never be that reality again but I can move forward to restore and improve relationships and make those more meaningful and stronger than they've been the last 20 years. 

I can find joy and satisfaction through my work blogging, and doing marketing for a local small business, and be satisfied knowing I'm doing things that fill me with joy and passion. Are they things I thought I'd be doing after graduating? No. Can I sleep better at night knowing that they align with core values? Absolutely yes. 

And most importantly, I need to fill in the cracks of my faith. I don't think I need to say more than that right now, as it all feels super personal, but I know how much more I could be doing, and the gap between where I am and where I wish I was is vast. Here's to finding more answers than questions in 2021.

What are some things you're working on in 2021? I'd love to hear all about it in the comments below. 

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Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects. 

The Happy Flammily Top 10 Posts of 2020

This blog has become a huge passion project of mine in 2020 as I really worked to increase my knowledge in a lot of different skills to grow my blog beyond what it's been the last nine years. I've learned so much about keyword research, search engine optimization, and so many little details that could make the same posts I was going to write anyways, reach a much wider audience than they would have previously. It's been so fun to learn about all the little pieces that go into writing a well formatted blog post, and seeing them come together in just the right way to make these posts that have out performed anything else I've done previously. 


With all of that being said, here are 10 blog posts that both you, and the mythical Pinterest and Google search engines have liked the most in 2020. 


1) Five Ingredient Everything Bagel Recipe: 

This blog post blew up in a way I never expected. It ranks in second place on google, and the amount of people who have found it on Pinterest, made the bagels, and posted pictures to share with me blows my mind. This post has been read 27,000+ times and has definitely been a top recipe for the year. 


2) Holiday Guest Bathroom Essentials:

This post was recently written with Angel Soft Toilet Paper, and was how we paid to remodel the upstairs guest bathroom in our home. It was a fun project for Derek and I to work on together. I did all the painting and he did all the woodwork by adding shelves and framing in the mirror. This post was one of those SEO moments where all the pieces to the post just worked well for Google, and so far it's amassed over 14,000 views in a little over two months. 



3) Month Supply of Food Storage List Family of Four:

When I was in Ohio at the end of February, everyone was buzzing about the incoming coronavirus and were a little shook about what it was going to look like when it got here. I being the paranoid person I am bought an entire storage shelf and all the food storage we did not have and had it delivered to our home while Derek was with the kids. I shared the post on the blog in case it would be helpful for others and it's been viewed over 10,000 times. It's weird to think it's now December, the world is vastly different, and we've eaten through 95% of the things we bought in that post... I need to restock again. 


4) Social Distant Summer Schedule:

One of my most popular posts on my blog of all time is this weekly summer schedule post I wrote in 2018. I decided to write a 2020 version with socially distant activities that you could do with your children each day during the summer and it was well received! This saved our bacon so much this summer and I hope it helped you too! 


5) Four Ingredient Artisan Bread Recipe:

2020 was the year that everyone learned to make sourdough bread. I don't have the patience to learn that kind of thing, but really appreciated learning how to make these easy loaves of artisan bread to accompany our dinners throughout the week. It's super easy to make, and I've loved seeing pictures of other people making it too on Pinterest!


6) 15 Best Meals to Take A Friend:

Someone asked me what a good meal to take a friend would be, and on a whim I decided to write and publish this post! I had no clue it would make it into the top 10 for the year, but it's been well loved! If you're looking to take a meal to someone after they've had a baby, been sick, etc... these are some of our. tried and true family favorites. 


7) Amish Friendship Bread Without A Starter:

This has probably been the most made recipe in our home in 2020. It comes together with basic pantry ingredients that we always have on hands, and is just the perfect cinnamon sugar treat that everyone loves. I don't think a loaf of this has lasted more than 12 hours in our home. 


8) Our Daily Routine During Coronavirus:

In March I wrote this post about what our routine was looking like in the new world of doing school, work, and everything else from home. It's so wild to think that this was our life at one point, and is till the reality for millions of people around the world. It makes me so grateful are kids were able to return to school this fall and that we've been able to get a little bit of normalcy back into our lives. 


9) No Bake Chocolate Peanut Butter Oatmeal Cookies:

This year I started going back and updating old posts on my blog that had died long ago. I updated them for SEO, remade the recipes and took new pictures, and republished them onto the site. This cookie recipe was one of the first old recipes to get updated, and it started to soar once I did! These are the perfect cookies to make when you want a quick, easy, and fast dessert after dinner!



10) Super Easy Rocky Road Fudge:

This was a fun and easy fudge recipe that I shared over the summer. Perfect for those months when you want all things s'mores, chocolate, and marshmallow related... or Christmas when you need and easy treat to gift someone. This recipe comes together with four ingredients and is sure to wow whoever you gift it to!


What has been your favorite post over here in 2020? I'd love to know in the comments below!

If you liked this post, The Happy Flammily Top 10 Posts of 2020, You might also like:

Be sure to follow along on Instagram @thehappyflammily to stay up-to-date on all the latest posts and projects.