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Peek Into Our Week: Lazy Days, Night at the Pool, a Surprise Party, and a trip to Little Rock

After four very full weeks, this week was a much slower-paced week. It was so nice… and I have a feeling we’ll be seeing a lot more weeks like this in our future. 🙂

We spent Memorial Day at home catching up on random projects and then took dinner to some new friends of ours, Brent & , who were home-bound because Brent recently tore his Achilles and was waiting until the swelling went down so he could have surgery. (He ended up being able to have the surgery on Wednesday and it was successful — we’re so grateful!).

We had a blast and loved getting to know them better! (And sadly, I realized I didn’t get any pictures of our fun evening!)

Peek Into Week

Tuesday was a Lazy Day at our house. We slept in, did basic chores and homeschooling, made Cinnamon Rolls, and then watched movies, tackled a mountain of laundry together, and went to bed early. I love days like that!

And there was a reason we went to bed early… because I had a 5:30 a.m. flight to catch to Little Rock for some radio broadcast tapings and filming with Family Life. In order to be presentable for the day and get to the airport in a timely manner, I got up at 2:45 a.m. Not my favorite wake-up time, but since I’d gotten good sleep the three days before, it wasn’t bad.

I love the opportunity flying affords me to get in some quiet reading, focused writing, and sometimes just quiet praying and listening to music.

Here’s a picture of my travel companions on my trip to Family Life: my Bible, a Mark Batterson book that I loved reading, Fast Company magazine, and Starbucks!!

{I subscribed to Fast Company magazine as part of a promo not too long ago and it’s become one of my new favorite magazines. If you are a small business owner or entrepreneur, I definitely recommend it. And this weekend, you can !}

Peek Into Week

Thursday was another Lazy Day. Guess what we did? More laundry, homeschooling, a few projects and some movies. I love simple, quiet days at home!

Peek Into Our Week

Friday evening was Pool Night with . So much fun… especially when the guys had a sort of Diving Showdown. Hilarious! 🙂 (Photo from — because my phone was dead!)

Saturday afternoon we had a surprise party for our dear friend, , to celebrate the fact that her book, has sold over a million copies. How incredible is that??

Ann inspires me so much with how she lives intentionally, loves well, and chooses gratitude. I’m so thankful for her life and her example!

Peek Into Week

While I was at Ann’s party, Jesse and the kids went to a birthday party for Tammy & Brent’s daughter, Kassidi. Silas and Kaitlynn had fun playing ping-pong for the first time.

Peek Into Week

And Kaitlynn got to hang out with Mrs. — these two had fun together, can’t you tell?!

So that was our week in a nutshell. How was YOUR week? Anything interesting or exciting happen? I’d love to hear!

Three Reasons You Need an Outside Passion (+ win a copy of Hope Runs!)

Note from Crystal: I’m so honored to have my friend, , guest posting here today. I’ve known Claire for almost five years and she’s been such a blessing and inspiration to me. I think you’ll be inspired by her post — and you’ll definitely want to check out her new book, Hope Runs!

Guest post by Claire who blogs at

Growing up, my mother had a favorite phrase: Anything worth doing is worth overdoing.

That motto (which is now her email signature) has informed many of the choices she makes in life, and it’s also proved relevant to me. Indeed, I’m a passionate person. I work hard, I play hard, and in all areas of life I try to be passionate about what I’m doing — otherwise I just don’t think it’s worth much of my time!

Although I work outside the home, run a popular , and have a family, I also have a passion for Kenya and AIDS orphans. Starting a nonprofit and joining my life with my foster son have been tangible outputs of this “outside” passion. Recently, this passion culminated in the publication of our new book: .

Ultimately, my experience has convinced me of the importance of cultivating a passion outside of your workplace, home life, or daily grind. In truth, I believe it’s essential to helping you find and maintain a fulfilling life.

Here are three reasons I believe you need an outside passion:

1. An Outside Passion Will Fuel You — Not Drain You

The problem with my mother’s motto (“anything worth doing is worth overdoing“), is burnout. The reason that many of us don’t pursue outside passions in our life is because we’re already overwhelmed with what we are doing already, and we think adding on one more thing will do us in. (To better understand our state of overwhelm, Crystal’s book, Say Goodbye to Survival Mode, should be your first stop.)

In reality, though, outside passions are the exact thing we need to become more energized, happy, and fulfilled. By adding in something to our lives that makes us feel excited, our perspective on our whole life can and will change.

2. You’ll Find Time for Your Passion

We all have 168 hours in a week, and most of us feel like that’s not enough to get done what we need to do. But, if you’re like me, even during the busiest times you usually find moments to do your favorite thing (whether it’s going for a run, having a cup of tea during a morning quiet time, talking with your best friend on the phone, or logging onto Facebook!).

The same is true of an outside passion. No matter how strapped you are for time, if you are truly passionate about an activity, you’ll find the time.

3. Your Outside Passion Will Open Your World to New Opportunities, and Will Encourage You to Share Your Passion

One of the great benefits of an outside passion is that it broadens your world beyond the day-to-day. In my case, an outside passion for Africa and AIDS orphans means that every day I orchestrate and participate in activities and relationships that are outside of my regular daily life of work and family.

Over time, I have felt so fulfilled by this that I have sought to share my passion, in order to bring in more of these relationships and activities. This, in turn, creates a cycle of even more fulfillment.

Once you make time for your passion, you’ll realize how important it is, and will want to share it with others. In honor of the culmination of one of my passions, I’m giving away a free ebook on the power of sharing our passions with the world .

We all have “outside” passions we might like to do more of, whether knitting, swimming, coin collecting, studying French, volunteering, or something else. Unfortunately, most of us think we can’t pursue these interests — because they don’t fit into our current life, because we already have too much going on, or because we aren’t sure we can find the time. In reality, though, making time for these passions is essential to building the healthy lives we seek.

Take this post as a call to arms to go ahead and pick up your passion. Find that new or neglected interest of yours and carve out time to make it a part of your daily life. With time, you’ll find an even healthier, happier you hidden inside!

Do you have an outside passion you’re yearning to pursue? What is it? Can you take one baby step today to start pursuing it?

Claire Diaz-Ortiz () is an author, speaker, and Silicon Valley innovator who was an early employee at Twitter. Named one of the 100 Most Creative People in Business by Fast Company, she holds an MBA and other degrees from Stanford and Oxford and has been featured widely in print and broadcast media. She writes a popular blog at and is the author of the new book,

Would you like to win a copy of Claire’s new book, ?

had lost his father to illness, his mother to abandonment, and his home to poverty. By age ten, he was living in a shack with seven other children and very little food. He entered an orphanage seeing it as a miracle with three meals a day, a bed to sleep in, and clothes on his back.

When Claire Diaz-Ortiz arrived in Kenya at the end of an around-the-world journey, she decided to stay the night, climb Mt. Kenya, then head back home. She entered an orphanage seeing it as little more than a free place to spend the night before her mountain trek. God had other plans.

is the emotional story of an American tourist, a Kenyan orphan, and the day that would change the course of both of their lives forever. It’s about what it means to live in the now when the world is falling down around you. It’s about what it means to hope for the things you cannot see. Most of all, it’s about how God can change your life in the blink of an eye.

Would you like to win a copy of ? Just click on the graphic below and type in your name and email address. Ten winners will be chosen and posted early next week. This giveaway ends Sunday, June 1, at 11:59 pm, CST.

Huge Multi-Year Magazine Sale!

 

This  is a great opportunity to get a great deal on your favorite magazine subscriptions PLUS you will save even more when you add additional years to your subscription!

There are over 50 titles to choose from, !

You can purchase magazine subscriptions as gifts, for yourself or even to renew existing subscriptions!

This sale will end Sunday night, June 1st,  2014, at midnight EST.

(Note: The links in this post are my referral links. Read my .)

Rite Aid: Deals for the week of June 1-6, 2014


Here are the best Rite Aid deals this week, with thanks to  for her help in compiling them. If you are new to shopping at Rite Aid or have questions about their coupon policy, .

Bic Razor – $5.99
Get $1.00 UPR
$3/1 Bic Soliel Disposable Razor, exp. 5/31/14 (SS 05/04/14 #2)

$0.99 after coupon

Colgate Toothpaste or MouthRinse – $3.99
Get $1.00 UPR
$1/1 Colgate Total, Optic White, Max Fresh or Sensitive Toothpaste, 06/01 SS (exp 6/14)
$1/1 Colgate Mouthwash or Mouth Rinse, 05/11 SS (exp 6/7)
$1.99 after coupon and UPR

Tresemme Hair Care – $4.00
Get $3.00 UPR wyb 2
$2/1 Tresemme Styling Product, 05/18 RP (exp 6/15)
$2/1 Tresemme Shampoo or Conditioner Product, 05/18 RP (exp 6/15)
Buy (2) Tresemme Hair Care $8.00
use (2) $2.00/1 Tresemme Coupon
Pay $4.00
Get $3.00 UPR
$1.00 or $0.50 each

Contour Meter – $9.99
Get $5.00 UPR
$4.99 after UPR

See the .

Find

Do you have your shopping trip planned or did you come up with a great deal scenario/idea? Just post about it on your blog and leave your link below. To make it easy for everyone to navigate quickly through the links, your link must link directly to your Rite Aid deals post. Links going to the homepage of your blog or any other part of your blog besides the direct link to your Rite Aid deals post will be deleted.

Walgreens: Deals for the week of June 1-6, 2014


Here are the best deals at Walgreens this week, with thanks to for her help with compiling these:

BALANCE REWARDS

Buy 1 Kraft Mayo at $2.99, Get 1000 Balance Rewards Points
Use $1/1, $1/2 or $.75/1 coupon from the 5/11 SmartSource insert
$0.99 after coupon and Balance Rewards Points

Buy 2 Bisquick Baking Mix 2/$3, Get 1000 Balance Rewards Points
Use or
Free after coupon

Buy 2 Crystal Light Drink Mix at 2/$4, Get 1000 Balance Rewards Points
Use
$0.50 after coupons and Balance Rewards Points

Buy 4 Bugles Snacks 4/$6 Get 1,000 Balance Rewards Points
Use $.50/2 or $1/2 coupon from the 4/13 SmartSource insert
$0.50 after coupons and Balance Rewards Points

REGISTER REWARDS

Buy 1 Reach Toothbrush at $2.99, Get $2 Register Rewards
Use $1/1 coupon from the 5/4 SmartSource insert
Free after coupon and Register Rewards

Buy 1 Scunci Hair Accessory at $2.99, Get $2 Register Rewards
$0.99 after Register Rewards

COUPON DEALS

Buy 1 Sweet Baby Ray’s Barbecue Sauce $1.99
Use
Or use $1/1 or $1/2 coupon from the 5/18 SmartSource insert
As low as $0.99 each after coupon

All Mighty Packs 20-24 pk $2.99
Use $1/1 printable
Or use $1/1 coupon from the 6/1 RedPlum insert or 5/11 RedPlum insert
Or use $2/2 coupon from the 4/6 RedPlum insert
As low as $1.99 after coupons

New to shopping at Walgreens? Be sure to head over and check out Walgreens 101 where I explain in detail how to maximize the mileage of your money at Walgreens. See the 

Find

Do you have your shopping trip planned or did you come up with a great deal scenario/idea? Just post about it on your blog and leave your link below. To make it easy for everyone to navigate quickly through the links, your link must link directly to your Walgreens deals post. Links going to the homepage of your blog or any other part of your blog besides the direct link to your Walgreens deals post will be deleted.

CVS: Deals for the week of June 1-6, 2014

Here are the best deals at CVS this week, with a big thanks to  for her help in compiling them:

Buy 1 Crest Complete, 3D White, Pro-health Toothpaste (4 oz) $2.99, Get $2 ECBs (Limit 2)
Use or $.50/1 coupon from the 6/1 P&G insert
$0.49 after coupon and ECBs

Buy 1 Colgate 360 Toothbrush (1 ct) at $3.49, Get $1.50 ECBs (Limit 2)
Use $1/1 coupon from the 6/1 SmartSource insert
$0.99 after coupon and ECBs

Buy 1 Gillette Venus (1 ct) at $6.49, Get $2 ECBs (Limit 1)
Use $3/1 coupon from the 6/1 P&G insert
$1.49 after coupon and ECBs

Buy 1 Nexium 24 HR (14 ct) at $9.94, Get $2 ECBs
Use
$6.94 after coupon and ECBs

Buy 2 Ban Products, Get $4 ECBs (Monthly Deal)

Other Deals in Ad

Buy 2 Almay Products (Prices start at $4.99), Get 1, Get 1 50% OFF
Use 2 $4/1 Almay coupons from the 6/1 SmartSource insert
Free + $0.49 overage after coupons

Colgate Max (6 oz), Total (4 oz), 2 in 1 (4 oz) or Optic White (3 oz) – $3
Use $2/1 CVS coupon printing at the CVS coupon machine
And use $1/1 coupon from the 6/1 SmartSource insert
Free after coupon

Gelusil Chewable Tablets (20 ct) – $2
Use $2/1 coupon from the 6/1
Free after coupon

V05 Shampoo or Conditioner (12.5 oz) $.75
Use $.50/2 coupon from the 6/1 SmartSource insert
$0.50 each after coupon

New to shopping at CVS? Be sure to check out my CVS 101 post that gives you the full scoop on how to get the best bargains at CVS. See the

Find

Do you have your shopping trip planned or did you come up with a great deal scenario/idea? Just post about it on your blog and leave your link below. To make it easy for everyone to navigate quickly through the links, your link must link directly to your CVS deals post. Links going to the homepage of your blog or any other part of your blog besides the direct link to your CVS deals post will be deleted.