Supreme Dreams of the Pre-Puppy Routine

Visit havertys.com to enter the TEMPUR-pedic contest for your chance to win a TEMPUR-pedic Mattress! This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Havertys. The thoughts and opinions are all mine.

Some girls want diamonds, some girls want flowers, other girls want to be swept away to exotic places. You know what this girl loves? Sleep. If you were to present me with any of those things, and then tell me that behind Door #4 there was a big, comfy bed, a cool breeze, and no alarm clock? Well, you can have your other fancy gifts. This girl’s gettin’ her jammies on.

I don’t even have an excuse, really. For years, I’ve been getting really good sleep. My kids are not babies anymore, which means they can either sleep in or wake up with the good sense to find the iPad and let me sleep. On top of that, it’s summer vacation, so most mornings we don’t have anywhere we have to be. My arch nemesis, the alarm clock, is gathering dust for now. The bedtime routine, and the sweet, blissful 8 hours of sleep that go with it, is wonderful.

So why, oh why, did I have to mess with it? Well, this sweet face is to blame:

And just like human babies, this furbaby is messing with my sleep. We’ve been working on crate-training him, which means he sleeps in his crate while we sleep in our wonderful-made-for-humans-only bed. He is not pleased with this arrangement, and he wants you to know it. The puppy crying is messing with my blissful bedtime routine.

Thankfully, I know this time is short. He’ll eventually catch on and go to bed without whining. And because I have such a great mattress, I’ll fall right back into sleeping like I used to (well, until school rolls around and the evil alarm clock returns). We all have the things we can’t control that mess with our rest, but our mattress doesn’t have to be one of them.

If it is (or if it’s simply time to be a grown-up and buy yourself a real mattress), now is the perfect time to shop for one. AndHavertys is the perfect place to do it. They have a big sale going on just in time for Labor Day (and just in time for you to finally get the good night’s sleep you deserve)!

Of course, it would be even better to win a new mattress, so make sure you enter the Havertys SupremeDream Giveaway! Simply follow the link to the Havertys website between now and September 1, 2014, fill out the form, and you’ll be entered to win a TEMPUR-Cloud Supreme Queen Set. Additional entries can be earned by sharing the giveaway on Facebook or Twitter using the hashtag #HavertysYawn. See website for official rules. For even more fun and prizes, check out the #HavertysYawn Twitter Party tomorrow (August 27, 2014) at 1 pm ET. You can also find Havertys on Pinterest, Facebook, as well as their own blog.

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Green BEAN Delivery: Fresh, Local Foods at Your Door {$15 Promo Code!}

Green BEAN bin contents

Disclosure: Green BEAN Delivery provided me with a free bin in exchange for a review of their service. All thoughts and opinions are mine.

For years I was a loyal Green BEAN customer. And then, suddenly, I wasn’t. I cancelled the service shortly before we moved into our temporary housing with the best intentions to start it up again once we were settled in the new house. And, well … you know what they say about a certain path and the best intentions!

Are you familiar with Green BEAN Delivery? They are a local company that delivers top-notch organic and all-natural produce and food items to your front door. It’s been so fun watching Green BEAN grow in the midwest, both literally and figuratively. Many of the items offered are grown or made locally, including fruits and veggies from Green BEAN’s own Feel Good Farm in Sheridan, Indiana. I remember when they first started out here in Indy, and now they’ve grown to add delivery areas throughout the midwest, including Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, and Missouri. Beyond the jobs they provide and the farmers and artisans they support, they’re also very active in the community. They partner with local food banks and sponsor the Constant Canned Food Drive.

Of course, the most important thing to you is the food. Is it good? Is there a decent selection? Is it affordable? The answer is yes, yes, and yes. I recently reopened my account, thanks to the kind nudge from the good people at Green BEAN.

The service is very easy to use. You simply open up an account by clicking on the “Sign-Up Now” link on the Green BEAN homepage. Choose the size of bin you’d like to receive, and how often you’d like to receive it (weekly or biweekly). For our somewhat vegetable-averse family of 4, the small bin, delivered biweekly, is perfect. You’ll receive an email a few days before your delivery date in which you can customize and add to your bin. Then, on your delivery day, your bin of goodness will magically appear on your doorstep!

Green BEAN delivery

Here’s my last bin. Behold, $35 of produce and $13 of add-on grocery items:

Green BEAN fruit and vegetable bin

I’ve got local sweet corn, peppers, beets, tomatoes, cucumber, onions, and green beans. I also have pears, garlic, bananas, plums, and peaches. I added on some of my favorite bread from Scholars Inn Bakehouse (for my daily summer lunch of tomato sandwiches), and treated myself to something I’ve been wanting to try for ages: curtido from Indy’s Fermenti Artisans (it’s amazing, by the way).

I’d forgotten how fun it was to customize a bin to my liking, and to add some of my favorite local treats to round out my bin. Why did I wait so long to start it up again? I have no idea, but I’m glad to be back on the Green BEAN Delivery wagon again.

Now, I know you have some questions, but I’ve heard them from friends and family before …

What if I don’t like the service? What am I committing to?

If you don’t like it or feel like you’re not getting your money’s worth, you simply cancel the service. You’re not locked into any contract and you can quit at anytime.

What if I like it, but even biweekly is too much produce for me? What if I’m going to be out of town/too busy/not cooking for awhile? What if the grocery budget gets tight towards the end of the month?

You can always cancel a delivery, or even multiple deliveries, via the Green BEAN website. In fact, I do it frequently. I typically only order 1 bin a month, and supplement with regular grocery shopping in between. There’s absolutely no penalty in doing so.

What if I don’t like what’s going to be in my bin? What if I’m extremely picky? What if I have allergy issues in my family?

When you get your email with your delivery information for your upcoming bin, you’ll see a selection of products already in your bin for you. You can certainly take the bin as it comes, but you can also customize it to your heart’s/belly’s content. Hate kale? Not a problem, sub a fruit or veggie you love, or increase the quantity of something else that’s already in your bin. It’s very easy to do as well. Have allergies or dietary restrictions? You can search for items by category, including kosher, gluten free,  vegan, vegetarian, and dairy free products.

What if I’m not happy with something in my bin? What if my bread is moldy, the milk’s gone bad, or my squash got squashed?

It happens (though not very often). Shoot Green BEAN’s customer service an email. They’ll make it right.

I’m pleased as punch to be able to offer you a special discount code for $15 off your first bin. Use the code 15JLNml when placing your first order for the discount. (Note: this code expires one week from today on 8/29/14) So, seriously, what are you waiting for?! Order up that bin and tell me about your favorite items so I can add them to my next bin!

 

 

 

 

 

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Fill ‘Er Up

Tired

Give this woman more Starbucks and a dark, quiet room.

It feels a little strange, sitting here and writing again. I don’t think I’ve ever taken more than a week or two off from writing, and certainly not without giving you a little warning that I’m checking out for a bit. But I did, and it was wonderful and exactly what my tired mind and depleted reserves needed.

It wasn’t long ago that I learned that many of my moods and personality quirks are directly related to my introvert tendencies. I’d always assumed being an introvert just meant you were quieter than the rest. It’s new enough knowledge to me that I still have a hard time remembering that certain experiences and situations will drain me of my energy and creativity. I forget, in the midst of the hustle and bustle, to take time for me, to fill myself back up. Or, like many of you, I remember … but I am too proud to ask for help.

That’s exactly what happened to me around the beginning of August. While our trip to Spain was amazing, and I wouldn’t trade the experience for the world, it meant that for a month I was always “on.” I was rarely alone. I was taking in new situations, meeting new people, being a guest and using my best party manners. One of my favorite ways to recharge is to spend the last hour or so before bed lost in a book. Well, Spaniards aren’t really know for turning in early. Most evenings I’d fall in bed well past midnight, too tired to do the one thing I could do while traveling to charge myself back up.

We came back from Spain and lurched through the rest of summer break. I didn’t sign the kids up for a single camp or activity. We spent nearly every day together. Again – a wonderful experience, to have the choice to stay home with the kids for the entire summer. But to not schedule in opportunities for them to do something on their own, to not ask for help in order to give myself a few hours alone? Rookie introvert move.

The end result is that I moved through the days like molasses. I couldn’t focus on a task that took more thought and energy than folding socks. I had no urge to write. My camera sat gathering dust. Even an iPhone photo seemed like too much effort. Any ounce of creative desire I had was just gone.

We’re half way through the first full week of school, and I’m happy to report that I feel my old self coming back again. I hate to leave you in the dark, but I’m so glad that I walked away for a bit. It gave my muddled mind time to rest. I still don’t have anything close to laser focus. The perfectionist in me wants to wait until I have the perfect post ready to go. But if I did, I might never have the courage to sit down and write again.

Of course, life did go on while I was away. Eli turned 7 at the beginning of August. It still doesn’t sound right when I say it. Seven? That’s a big kid, not my baby boy! We had a very laid-back un-party on the cul-de-sac. We plopped a table at the end of our driveway, served cake and ice cream to whoever walked by, and kept the un-party going until close to midnight. Neighbors pulled their grills out to the street, kids ran around with sparklers and flashlights. He obviously had a terrible time.

Eli 7th birthday

The very next day we welcomed a new addition to our family. Meet Gus.

Gus

He’s a lab-husky mix that we adopted from ARPO. He’s 4 months old and ridiculously adorable. It’s a good thing, too, because I had forgotten how much having a puppy is like having a toddler. Yes, there are bodily fluids on the carpet, middle-of-the-night wakings, and some biting. But he’s also loads of goofy, clumsy puppy fun and lots of soft, warm snuggles. When I see Elena choose the puppy over the iPod or when I hear Eli’s belly laughs while playing with the puppy, it’s all worth it.

Finally, the kids started a new year of school. Elena is now an official middle-schooler. Hold me now. There are no first day of school photos of her because the bus comes at the ass crack of dawn and she’d sooner show up to school in a My Little Pony shirt before she’d pose with one of those Pinterest-y signs. Eli started 1st grade and was more than willing to pose. He had a brand new pair of shoes to wear to school, but instead he chose his smelliest, dirtiest shoes. And I let him, because God forbid we set the bar too high from the start.

Eli First Grade

I hope you are enjoying the last days of summer. Thanks for hanging around while I was gone. You guys are the peachiest, and I’m so glad to come back to each and every one of you.

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