Tuesday, August 8, 2017

DIY Metal Drawer Decoupage



Our fellow HerMama, Veronica from Arizona sent us this really fun, really easy and pretty stunning DIY project. While putting together a bedroom from her high school son, Vero just didn't think the filing cabinet, while functional, was adding style to the room. So being the crafty one she is, she came up with a simple solution to take that filing cabinet from meh to marvelous!

All she needed was...



  • Fabric
  • Spray Paint
  • Sponge Applicator
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Screwdriver for removing hardware
  • Mod Podge Hard Coat

Remove the drawers from the cabinet and remove the handles. Spray paint the handles to match your fabric and set aside to dry. You could also spray paint the entire cabinet to enhance or change the color. 

Measure the front of the drawers and add enough length to cover the edges of the drawers. Cut out enough pieces of fabric to cover the face of each drawer. 


Add some Mod Podge onto the top edge of the drawer and lay fabric onto edge. 


Continue by adding a layer of Mod Podge to the front and glue down fabric. Glue down all edges and smooth out to eliminate any air bubbles. Tuck in corners.



Once glued down add a layer of Mod Podge over all the fabric. Let dry for about 30 minutes and add a second layer. 


Allow to dry overnight. 

With scissors or another small sharp object cut into the fabric where the holes for the hardware. Then reattach handles. 



Such a simple project with very few items needed to complete! And what a difference it makes. It took a cold steel looking cabinet and turned it into a gorgeous piece that would be a great addition to any room or office! 

Thanks for sharing Vero! 

Friday, July 28, 2017

HerMamas Tales from Abroad: Could This Lead to Divorce?



Pretty intense thought for a title, but today I had an epiphany that balance will be so critical as we travel for at least the next year. My husband and I spend all day together, everyday. Seems like an ideal arrangement but if we aren't careful we could end up burned out with one another. Truth be told this could happen in many ways. Marriage is one factor and parenting is another. This got me thinking about life in general. For our own mental health and self-care, and regardless of traveling indefinitely or not, everyone needs the following for the sake of balance:

- Spiritual Connection 
- Purpose/Fulfilling Work
- Exercise/Healthy Activities 
- Individual Time
- Social Time
- Emotional Fulfillment

In theory, having all of the above creates balance in a person in order to feel whole and personally able to connect with the world outside of them. With this list in mind, the husband and I will literally have to find ways to make this happen individually and for our children while we live an unorthodox routine of moving from country to country as a unit of five. 

Some ways to implement these are easy: exercising as a family, attending church weekly, and creating opportunities to meet new people and make friends. We've done this pretty well, so far. That gets point 1, 3, and 5 down but what about the other three areas? Those are trickier. Spending alone time is something we even need to create for our children but how so? As the school year unfolds, we will implement individual assignments for each to work independently. We also understand how important their connection to us will be, so already, we often have individual dates so each child gets a parents' undivided attention. 

As husband and wife communication will be key especially when we need to fill an area of balance. The hubs and I have committed to tell each other what we need when we are feeling low on any of the six needs. It's not always easy I'll admit. Why can't husbands and wives just read each other's (emotional) minds/needs? Nevertheless, our foundation is love and we've both committed to not driving each other completely crazy as we live life so intertwined.

In our first month of traveling, we've already lived in 4 different hotels, cabins or homes. We've been on buses, cabs and about five plane rides. That's one home per week and lots of moving. It's a blessing to do this long term traveling but in those chaotic four weeks of moving the six values above needed to stay at the forefront! The best way to do that which works in any household is to determine family goals and guidelines. We're doing a weekly reward system to encourage kindness and cleanliness and so far, so good. Systems work, consist ones even better. Boy do I need to tell myself this every single morning.

How do you fulfill yourself in the six areas of balance?

Have any tips for this HerMama? Please share in comments section below.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Your City Rocks

Recently we can't go anywhere without my kids scanning the area for rocks. Yup rocks. Recently this new game has popped up in our town. Kids and Adults are taking regular ol' rocks and painting them with really fun designs. And then they take these cool rocks and leave them in random places around town. Then they add some hints as to where they have hidden these cool rocks. Other kids can then head out to find the rocks. 

My kids loved this idea and were super stoked to find some rocks at a park while walking the dog. 


They were inspired to paint their own rocks. They spent a fun and more importantly quiet afternoon painting rocks. 


Then on our next trip to the grocery store and the library the girls left their rocks behind.


I added some hints on the local Facebook page and a little while later someone posted a picture of themselves with my girls rocks! They were so excited.

This is such a simple little local project, but it has been such a fun one that has got us out of the house more, let my kids be creative and let us communicate with members of our community.

This is such an easy project to start in your community! 

Friday, July 21, 2017

Snowplow Parenting


We have all heard of the overbearing Tiger Mom, the overprotective Helicopter Parent and the controversial Free-Range parent. But there is a new term for a parenting type that many parents are finding may fit them to a T!

Snowplow parenting is a term used for parents who is always moving obstacles out of the way for their child. Like a snowplow moves snow out of the way for drivers. These parents are actively working toward removing anything that may be hard or difficult for their children to handle. They want their kids to be successful at everything, so they remove any challenges that their child may fail at. These are the type of parents who are in the principals office asking for an extension for a late assignment or pleading their case why their kid should be able to take that test again.

The difference between a helicopter parent and a snowplow parent is the motivation. The helicopter parents is always around because they are afraid of their kid getting physically or emotionally hurt. Their motivation is fear. A snowplow parent is micro-managing to ensure success in their kids future.

I realized that I might be a little bit snowplowey myself.  Here's my story...

My oldest will be starting 7th grade in 2 weeks. At the end of the school last year my daughter had to sign up for her elective for the next year. She had just started showing interest in singing and I tried to sway her toward chorus. She was set on going for ASB (student government). She had to write an essay and turn in an application and during the summer we found out she got in. A few weeks later my daughter got a information pack from the ASB adviser along with information about the first field trip.

Before school starts, as a get to know each other activity, ASB is going to a local university for a low-ropes course challenge. Like something you would see on a Road Rules Challenge. As soon as I read this I knew it was something my daughter would not enjoy. I knew that because of her skin condition that sometimes make it difficult for her to bend her arms and legs, added to her general chicken personality I knew that she would be awful at a ropes course. I knew that she would most likely come in last and have an overall miserable time. So instead of forcing her to go and be involved with the elective she chose and letting her try it and fail, I called the teacher and made every excuse in the book to get her out of the activity. Making sure that the teacher believed that it was my concern and not my daughters.

There I was pushing aside a difficult situation so that my daughter did not fail at something.

 Classic snowplow parenting.

Although the parenting style motivation may be different, helicopter parenting and snowplow parenting can have the can effect on kids. They will grow up not being able to handle failure and without the ability to problem solve. Something that I know I am going to have to work on in the future. 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Hermamas Tales from Abroad: My Review of Puerto Rico

It's so good to be back on Hermamas.com after a whirlwind 2017. Life kept me so busy with our family's decision to travel indefinitely, I haven't spent much time, if any, blogging. But, we are back and moving full speed ahead with travel and adventure taking center-stage.

I recently wrapped up a trip to Puerto Rico and I must say PR is worth a visit for families, couples, and friends alike. My time in PR is the first stop in what will be long-term travel through Latin America. I'll get to visit some of the best hotspots of this region of the world. Sharing my adventures will hopefully spark travel inspiration in your families too.

Let's start with why your next travel destination could very well be Puerto Rico:

Pros:
- Don't need a passport to visit PR (super plus)!
- Caribbean beaches, music, food, and fun are a part of this island destination
- English and Spanish widely used all over PR
- Uber readily accessible (though no airport pick-ups allowed)
- Some of the best beaches in the world are in PR (Culebra Island)!

Cons (though I didn't experience many):
- Island-time is a thing... be prepared to wait (especially in restaurants).
- It's hot (but that's not too bad in and of itself), prepare for heavy rain and mosquitos depending on your months of travel.

All and all, the weather, food, and easy going island life make this an ideal vacation destination!. 

The following pic is of us enjoying Culebra Island. This beach is extremely comparable to the amazing beaches of Thailand; however, it's less crowded and closer than a trip to SE Asia from mainland US.


Puerto Rico has one of the most beautiful National Rain Forests in the U.S. El Yunque National Park is a stunning sight to be seen with hiking trails, natural waterfalls, and amazing grounds for relaxation and peace. We completed a 30 minute hike towards the waterfalls known as La Mina Cascades and did so with a party of 11 --- all varied fitness levels and ages. We did it quite easily, so it can be done. 

Plus, your reward is enjoying a dip in a gorgeous waterfall, this is my husband fully immersed in the falls.. 



What I've shared is just a glimpse of what is sure to be a beautiful tropical vacation for you and yours. 

Let me know what Latin American country you've visited or would love to visit and why in the comment section below!

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Queventure Time!

2017 has been an exciting and busy year for us. With getting the kids through school and busy days at work, it did not leave us with a lot of free time. But we are back and have a great new series for you. 

Our very own Irene, along with her husband Diego and their 3 kids spent the first part of the summer selling their worldly possessions and last week they started an adventure of a life time. As a family of 5 they will be spending the next year or so traveling though Mexico, Central, and South America. This is stuff that dreams are made of and we are so excited to follow along with them. 

You get to hear about Irene's travel experiences on our blog with a new series called...

"Hermamas Tales from Abroad"

Parenting and maintaining a marriage while traveling will come with its own challenges and we can't wait to share Irene's perspective with all of you.

You can also follow along with the Quevedo's Adventure over on their brand new blog 

www.queventure.com




They are currently in Puerto Rico and the blog just went live. Adventure is out there and the Quevedo's will find it and share it with the world!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

ASMR

I listen to a lot of podcasts, one of my current favorites is called Beautiful Stories from Anonymous People.  The idea is pretty awesome, the host posts on Twitter that he is recording and who ever gets through talks with the host for one hour about anything they want. They just can reveal who they are. No names.

A recent episode had a girl talking about how she makes ASMR videos. Like me the host had no idea what ASMR videos were. ASMR stand for Autonomous sensory meridian response. Turns out they are videos of people whispering and making soft noises that are suppose to give you a static or tingling sensation from you head and down your back. It is used as a way to help people fall asleep.

Apparently this is a super popular thing. This video has over 6.8 million views! Million.



Have you ever heard of ASMR?
Do you think it would help you relax and sleep?