I have been thinking a lot this week about how much what we do now can have a beautiful, long-lasting impact on our lives. For example, I’ve been meeting with a small group of women every month for over two years. We’ve studied encylicals, papal letters, and books together, encouraged each other through the ups and downs of everyday life (including four new babies between the five of us), and prayed for each other. It’s not a huge part of my life–we meet just once a month, after all–but looking back, it’s astounding to see how much these few hours a month have meant to me. Something about that consistency, that commitment to each other, and the willingness we share to be vulnerable and honest about where we are in our walks with the Lord that has made me a better wife, mom, friend, and Catholic. My mother-in-law met with the same rosary group for years and years, and I love looking at that example and wondering if I’ll still be swapping stories and sweet treats with these women decades from now.
The same holds true for traditions we start with our kids in these little years, habits we fight to form, and relationships we cultivate. It can be hard to feel like any of it matters in the early stages or in the thick of our full, demanding, day-to-day lives. But, friends, I really believe it does. As we celebrate Valentine’s Day next week and head into Lent shortly after, I hope you’ll keep this at the forefront of your mind alongside me!
1. Charlie’s preschool isn’t doing a valentine exchange this year to minimize contact, but I couldn’t resist putting together a few valentines for us to drop off to friends! My sweet friend McKenzie invited me to try out her digital printables library, The Fernandina Paper Co., and I am a little bit addicted to personalizing her adorable pieces for at-home printing. The designs have such a sweet, Southern feel that I love! She offers everything from valentines, to recipe cards, to notecards, to gift labels, and so much more.
2. I’m always keeping an eye out for quick/easy/healthy dinners that our whole family will enjoy (who isn’t?), so I had to share this one we’ve been whipping up often: fish taco bowls with rice, mahi mahi seasoned with taco seasoning and cooked in a skillet, shredded red cabbage, avocado, pico de gallo, and a drizzle of chipotle aioli (mayo with a little bit of adobo sauce). You could easily substitute cauliflower rice and compliant mayo to make it a Whole30 meal.
3. I cannot get over how adorable these love note “pop tarts” are! Such a cute and easy Valentine’s Day activity to do with kids…not to mention, homemade pop tarts are so much tastier than their store-bought counterparts.
4. I know many of you follow my dear friend Emily, so you may have already seen this, but her kids’ bathroom refresh turned out SO well! It’s always encouraging to me to see room makeovers that didn’t involve any true renovation, since that is what the vast majority of our home projects look like too. P.S. If you’re in the mood for some more bathroom inspiration, take a peek at our downstairs bathroom in our current house and the master bathroom is our old house!
5. My sister gave me a heads up that my current favorite sweater (as seen in this post and this post) is currently restocked in all sizes in green! I have to stop myself from wearing it multiple times a week, I love it so much. It’s super soft, warm, holds up well in the wash, doesn’t feel suffocating (I sometimes hate turtlenecks/mocknecks because of how they feel on my neck, but not this one), and has such a cute, modern fit. I’m 5’6″ and usually a size 4/6 and have it in a small. It’s taking all my willpower not to buy it in light blue too!