Willamette Valley Wonder Woman

Monday, September 1, 2014

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster This Fall

This shop has been compensated by #CollectiveBias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias

 Hello everyone! This last weekend flew by and I can't believe that I didn't even get to write once on here! We attended my friends wedding, I worked a bit, and Wayne and I got to sneak out for 2 hours yesterday and did a little wine tasting. I am going through all of the pictures I took so I can share some with you, but I do have a few posted up on my Instagram right now :). Today I'm just hanging out at the house trying to clean up after a week of neglect. I'm already on dishwasher load #2 for the day and I'm glad I stocked up on dishwasher detergent the other week at Walmart! There's a coupon for $1.00 off Finish products, and they are already on rollback through October, so it was a great deal - plus the Finish Powerball is the best cleaner I've ever used. 

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias

School is starting tomorrow for the girls (Noah has one more week with me) and I feel like I'm still stuck in summer mode - not ready for the daily schedules, the drop off and pick ups... between school events and sport activities I feel like I don't have enough time to cook dinner, let alone keep the house clean, but I have came up with a few ideas that I'm really going to try and implement this fall and I thought it would be fun to share them with you today - plus I'd love if you commented and shared your tips too!

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias


1. Maintain a cleaning schedule: I used to be a whole lot better at this than I have been the past couple of years, but I know that I do a better job of keeping up with the housework when I have what needs to be done printed out right in front of me. Figure out what days work best for you, like mopping on Tuesdays and Thursdays, dusting on Fridays, cleaning the windows on Wednesdays, and then create a daily to do list that has stuff you do every day, like dishes, sweeping, cleaning the counters, etc. Find a system that works okay for you them type it up and print it out. If you get really fancy you could laminate the sheets so you can reuse them and use a dry erase marker to cross them off each time. 

2. Have a cleaning caddy standing by: I try and keep all of the cleaning products that I use frequently underneath the kitchen sink in a portable cleaning container so that I can just grab it and take it with me to whatever room I'm cleaning. I don't keep too much in it, but things like window cleaner, santizing wipes, gloves, bleach, etc. It saves me time from trying to grab everything and then bring them with me. 

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias

3. Use efficient products: I know one of the main ways I save some time on house cleaning is by using products that do the job right the first time. There are certain cleaners that I will not buy any other brand for because I know that certain ones do a better job than others, thus saving me time from not having to clean it so often, or again. The Finish products like I mentioned earlier are seriously like my favorite dishwasher cleaners, because they clean the dishes the first time, and I never find myself having to 're-run' the dishwasher again.

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias

4. Have a 5 Minute pick up party at night: I have to tell you, like the #1 thing I waste my time on everyday is picking up and moving the kids toys and junk out of my living room so I can keep it clean. I know a lot of you do this already, but it's one of my goals to have these kids pick it up every night before bed, so I'm going to get a basket and turn up the music for 5 minutes and see if they can get it all put away during that time. Maybe the dancing and tunes will help make it a little more fun for everyone. 

5. The kids can help: This may not fall into the 'getting the house clean faster' idea, but it hopefully will someday. A couple of years ago I made a folder with a list of chores that Anika could do to earn a little extra cash. I wrote down step-by-step instructions so she knew exactly what had to happen to earn the money. She doesn't do them consistently, but she knows where the folder is whenever she wants to earn a few extra dollars. I actually wrote about it a couple of years ago on here, and looking back now at my earlier posts just reminds me of how far I've come on this little blog! 

5 Tips to Finish House Cleaning Faster this fall #SparklySavings #shop #cbias

I've come to peace knowing my house will never be immaculate, it will always look lived in, and even though it's not perfectly beautiful, it's clean and we are healthy. Who's ready for fall? ;)

Don't forget to print out your $1.00 off Finish Products to use next time you're shopping in Walmart! Thanks #CollectiveBias and #SparklySavings for letting me share my ideas with you!


~Melissa

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Create.Simplify.Inspire. #83

Yes, this post is a few hours late. Yes, last week I said I had hoped for a more mellow week. Yes, I jinxed myself. Today was filled with work - I covered a day shift which I never do, and ended up working from 6am-4pm, then I had our first PTO meeting of the year to rush off too, but I also found out yesterday that Anika started soccer today. At 5:30. And my meeting was at 6 - 10 miles away. And I had to drop off Emma and Noah first. I actually surprised myself that I wasn't late to anything.

 I'm laying in bed before 10 pm and ready for bed, which is very unusual for me. Tomorrow I'm heading over to help my friend set up for her wedding (which is Saturday), and then heading in to work an evening shift. I know a lot of women do it, but I don't think there is anyway I could work full time, blog, and be involved with the school and sports. There's not enough hours in the day!

    How's your week going?

I'd love it if you shared!

This link up to to share anything and everything that inspires you. 

           ~Melissa
Create.Simplify.Inspire. #83


Willamette Valley Wonder Woman

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Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Free Healthy Habits Booklet For Young Girls

This is a sponsored post with Together Counts / Girl Scoutns of USA and I have been compensated for my participation in this initiative. As always, all opinions are 100% my own.
#sponsored #HealthyHabits @togethercounts @gscnc

Even though I've never been in Girl Scouts and we haven’t really involved the girls with it yet, I have always loved the program and what it does to help teach girls important things in life, like building confidence and character. One of my good friends has been a troop leader for many years with her daughter, and I've loved following along with their journey’s via Facebook. From the patches she’s received to the events they've done…sometimes it makes me wish I could have been involved when I was younger!

#sponsored #HealthyHabits @togethercounts @gscnc

I've wanted to involve my girls with the Girl Scouts in some sort of fashion for a while now, but sadly last time I checked there were no troops local to us and I just don’t have the energy to commit to being in charge of one more thing. (I’m already behind on the PTA stuff!!) But – I wanted to share these free booklets I've found with you. The Girl Scouts have partnered with the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation and have developed three “Healthy Habits” booklets that volunteers can use in conjunction with their Journey Adult Guides. These books can show girls fun and easy ways to achieve “energy balance”, and what I love about it is that anyone can download them and implement them into their daughter’s journeys.  The three booklets are:
  • ·         Between Earth and Sky with Healthy Habits
  • ·         WOW! Wonders of Water with Healthy Habits
  • ·         Get Moving! With Healthy Habits





      I think any extra information that we can give to our kids is so important for their development! The Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation provides a program called the Together Counts Program, where they hope to inspire active and healthy living – and I think so many of our kids don’t really understand the importance of balanced lives, until in many cases it becomes a health problem.

    So, check out the booklets and tell me what you think! How involved are you in teaching your daughter Healthy Habits? It’s sometimes not easy, but just leaving the door open to have topics up for discussion will really help your daughter when questions do come up.

#sponsored #HealthyHabits @togethercounts @gscnc

   To learn more about the Girl Scout, join the upcoming Twitter Chat on September 9th and have some fun with the Girl Scouts Nation’s Capital and Together Counts!
      When: September 9th
Hashtag: #Healthy Habits
Follow: @GSCNC @togethercounts
Details: Will be available on MomItForward.com on September 3rd!
~Melissa

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Feast Portland

#FeastPDX

Things have been so incredibly busy lately that I haven't had a chance to tell you about the latest food event that I'll be attending soon! It's right here in Oregon and it's called Feast Portland. Feast Portland was founded in 2012, though this will be my first year attending this fun food event that is presented by Bon App├ętitFeast a big celebration that is broken down into many smaller events, so it's great because you can pick and choose what interested you. There's Grand Tastings, Dinner series, hands on classes - but, over half of the events are already sold out, so if you are considering attending I'd buy your tickets soon. :)

#FeastPDX

People from all over the country come to Oregon to celebrate Oregon's Bounty, and Alaska Airlines has partnered with Feast Portland and is providing discounted travel to the event between September 16th - September 23rd (2014). Also, Oregon Wines Fly Free on Alaska Airlines! If you happen to buy a case of wine at participating wineries you can fly them back with you - free of charge! Believe me, there's a lot of good wine around here! :)

#FeastPDX

I'm excited to be covering Feast Portland with a blogger pass, so you'll be seeing a lot more drool-worthy pictures around here over the next couple of weeks! (Especially on my Instagram) - and I'm in the process of trying to get a babysitter lined up for Saturday night so Wayne can attend some of the events with me and we can have a date night / celebratory anniversary night!

#FeastPDX

Here are the events that I'll be covering for Feast Portland:

1. Friday, September 19th : Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting presented by Alaska Airlines
2. Saturday, September 20th: Oregon Bounty Grand Tasting presented by Alaska Airlines
3. Saturday, September 20th: Marquee Event: Oregonian Media Group High Comfort at The Nines
4. Sunday, September 21st: Tillamook Brunch Village

Plus some other amazing media-exclusive happy hours and events.

#FeastPDX

 One thing I love about Feast Portland though, is that it's all for a good cause. All net proceeds from the event are donated towards ending childhood hunger in Oregon and around the country. In it's first two years, Feast Portland has already raised over $99,000 for it's charitable partners - Partners for a Hunger-Free Oregon and Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry Campaign.

#FeastPDX

If you are looking for a break and a fun getaway for the weekend you should come out! There are many local area hotels that have exclusive Feast Portland packages, so you can get the most for your money. For more information about the event, check out their website: FeastPortland.com and while your at the Feast Portland don't forget to tag your photos and tweets with #FeastPDX so we can all join in on the celebration! 

~Melissa
*All photos c/o of FeastPortland.com. I have been given a blogger/media pass in exchange for my coverage - no other compensation will be received. All opinions are my own. For more information on partnering with me on upcoming events email me at MelissaKaylene@gmail.com.*

Monday, August 25, 2014

Paperless Coupons to Stock up on Items for Fall Sports

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.
10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias

I used to clip coupons quite a bit. I was never extreme, but I did a pretty good job stocking up the house with items that were close to, if not, free. Then I began blogging and doing more activities like running the P.T.O at the grade school and I found that I just couldn’t do it all. Couponing is fun and rewarding, but it takes time, and at some point I had to re-evaluate to see what was the most valuable way to spend my time – and as you can see this blog easily won that debate. So, I changed some of the ways that I tried to save money.

I started using my phone more.

10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias
10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias

Stores have jumped on the band wagon and have realized that most people out there really don’t have the time it takes to sit down and cut out coupons, but they do have a couple minutes to take out their phones in the store and digitally “clip” a coupon to their account so it gets taken off right there when they check out. It’s seriously as easy as pushing a button, and just like the coupons you clip - they can each be used one time.

I was very excited when I heard that Walgreens started implementing this system with their Balance Reward Card App, because I can stock up on things there that I might not do at other stores – things like vitamins and bandages, Walgreens has a large variety for me to choose from.

10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias

While everyone else is out school shopping, I’m also out getting extra things to have on hand for soccer season – things like snacks, band-aids, wipes, sanitizer, stuff that we go through more of when the girls are playing.

At Walgreens the other evening I stocked up on a lot of those items and used my digital coupons to save some money. Every little bit helps!

10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias
10 Things to Save with #WalgreensPaperless for Sports Seasons #shop #cbias

What things do you stock up on during sports seasons? Here is a list of a few things I always keep extras of:


1.     Bottled Water
2.     Nuts + Trail mix
3.     Hand Wipes
4.     Sanitizer
5.     First Aid Kit (make sure yours has instant ice packs inside!)
6.     String cheese
7.     Extra Band-Aids (they help if your kid gets an cut, or blisters)
8.     Bug Spray
9.     Sun Block
10.   Deodorant

Thanks to #CollectiveBias and #WalgreensPaperless for letting me share my ideas with you!

~Melissa