Tag Archives: kids

Murrays Meet Mountains


My boys have begged to fly on an airplane since they could talk. We used to take them to the airport just to give them a taste, but they’ve never had the feeling of the power of a take off, or being in the clouds, or traveling at 500 miles per hour. In fact, we didn’t have any plans at all for making their dream a reality, because flying with 6 involves spending a small fortune.


Late one Friday night my friend Adrienne found one-way tickets to Denver for $25 a pop. I thought it was a scam, or some sort of glitch, but it turned out to be legit, and something Brad and I couldn’t pass up for our family.

Could have we used that money for a new mattress, flooring, savings, GROCERIES?  We certainly could have, but no one talks about their mattress for years to come and groceries are gone in less than a week. An opportunity to introduce all of my boys to the Rocky Mountains for the price of one airline ticket – how could we not go for it? 

I think the video captures the enthusiasm pretty well from us telling the boys the other night…

So in a couple of weeks we’ll make a quick 3 night adventure to Colorado! We’re had such a great experience with Drury Inn for our St. Louis trip that we decided to partner with them again for our accommodations in Denver. We’re excited to check out the newly opened Drury Inn in Stapleton.

We hope to do as much outdoors as possible and take in all the beauty of the area. So far we’re planning a day in Colorado Springs at the Garden of the Gods, but that’s the only thing we have on our agenda.

We’ve never been to Colorado before, outside of the Denver airport, so we’re up for suggestions and MUST SEEs! Thanks in advance for your awesome sightseeing suggestions, food recommendations, and any other travel tips you’d be willing to offer.


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Easy Homemade Granola Bars

Easy Homemade Granola Bars

I was looking for something quick and easy to take to church for our Sunday school class over the weekend, and decided to try homemade granola bars, after seeing some easy recipes floating around Pinterest.  I adapted this one for our tastes and to give it more of a protein punch.  The boys were happy that I had a few leftovers to bring home for them to devour! I’m looking forward to making another batch for quick breakfast snacks and to send in lunches!

I didn’t expect them to be so simple and delicious to make homemade! 


What You’ll Need for Homemade Granola Bars:

  • 3 cups of Quick Oats
  • A 14oz Can of Sweetened Condensed Milk
  • 2 T of Melted Butter
  • 1/3 cup of Peanut Butter
  • 1/4 cup of Ground Flax Seed
  • 1/2 cup of Chocolate Chips
  • 1/2 cup of Peanut Butter Chips

(The last four ingredients you can switch up/omit/add what you’d like!)

How to Make Homemade Granola Bars:

1. Preheat the Oven to 350 Degrees.

2. Grease Baking Sheet with Butter or Cooking Spray.

3. Mix Together Oats, Milk, Butter, Flax, Peanut Butter, and Chocolate & Peanut Butter Chips.

4. Spread Evenly in the Baking Sheet with Wet Hands.

5. Bake 15-20 Minutes.

6. Remove from Oven and Cut Into Granola Bars With a Plastic Knife While Still Warm.

7. Eat Immediately or Store to Enjoy for Breakfast or Snacks!

What’s your favorite on-the-go breakfast recipe? 


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Raising a Home Full of Boys Over a Frat House



I wasn’t a regular at the Frat Houses during my days at Butler University, but the times I did step inside of them I was hit with the smell of urine and beer.  Not the most luring or pleasing smell to a 20 something girl, and somehow I haven’t acquired an appreciation for either smell in my 30’s.  Although my house is full of boys, I’m determined to not live in a Frat House.  We DO boy in this house.  There are games of soccer in my living/family room, there is plenty of boy humor, and rowdy, BUT I don’t want my boys to leave our home with no regard to order, cleanliness, and an appreciation of the work that is involved in maintaining a home.

Over Christmas break I chatted with some close friends and family members of how involved their kids are in the home upkeep, and I realized our boys could and should do more. I wasn’t sure how to implement it, and I dreaded the enforcement, but I can say now a month in that it was so worth it.

Prior to our new system there were things the boys were expected to do on their own (but with frequent reminders): pick up toys/messes, clean up breakfast, put away shoes/coats/backpacks, and help with home responsibilities when asked.  Sometimes they would volunteer to help out on their own or for a reward, but most things landed on my overwhelming to-do list.

Starting at the beginning of January we began a color week system that rotates weekly.

For instance a Yellow Week means:

  • Henry – Laundry Helper
  • Brooks – Dust/Trash Collection
  • Clark – Bathrooms
  • Isaac – Vacuum Downstairs Floors

The next week everyone gets a new job, so you don’t get stuck with your least favorite thing very often.

There’s a quarter reward system. So they begin with a certain number of quarters for the week which can be deducted for poor attitude, not completing their job, or not doing their “regular” responsibilities.

Now, do they need our tips and guidance still? Sure.

Is it perfect? Nope.

Is it taking some of the load off of me? Absolutely!

 Is it teaching them responsibility and to be better workers? I really think so.

One thing that has changed our home in having our boys more involved in the cleaning routines has been our discovery of Thieves Household Cleaner.  It cleans, disinfects, and it’s non-toxic made with 100% plant based material. Before I wouldn’t have let them touch our toilet cleaners, surface sprays, etc. This cleaner alone has replaced all of my previous cleaners (toilet cleaner, kitchen spray, glass cleaner, stainless steel cleaner, produce spray, and more)! A cleaner that you can use both as a toilet cleaner AND a fruit and veggie wash is about as versitile as it gets, people!  AND it’s saved us soooooo much money!  This 14 ounce concentrate can make 30 Dollar Store spray bottles of cleaner – so you are talking about an entire bottle of cleaner for under a $1!



Thieves cleaner is one of my absolute FAVORITE Young Living Products, so for the rest of this month (January) if you sign up for a Premium Starter Kit, I’m gifting you with a 14 oz concentrate to get you started as well!  

The diffuser ALONE does miraculous things for Boy Odors. I’ll take relaxing spa smell over dirty laundry/toilet/sweaty head any day of the week.  Love you Boys. I really do.

So BUY THIS (11 oils, the diffuser, + samples/materials for $150)


And GET THIS as a Bonus! (A $29 retail value!) 



{Sign Up Here.}

Just consider it my “Say No to Frat House” Gift!  Your welcome. 

****Please let me know if you make the Premium Starter Kit plunge in the comments so I can get this out to you pronto!*****

How about YOUR house?  Do you do a chore chart?  Allowances?  How’s it working out for your family?



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