Today is the kind of day when putting together a lasagna took 25 minutes and most of my brain cells.
I literally cannot remember how many times the baby woke up last night, only that he ended up in my bed at 4:30 with me curled all around him so my husband wouldn’t roll over too far.
I almost started this post with “Today is the kind of Monday…” It’s Tuesday.
The toddler moved like a sloth this morning when I tried to take everyone to library storytime in 15° F weather.  Even though it’s his favorite thing all week.  The baby got cold, which made him wake up, and didn’t take a morning nap.
That’s the truth of being a mom to multiple littles.  It isn’t easy.  It isn’t always fun.  Sometimes it is frustrating and emotionally taxing and you feel like you’re quite bad at it.
I’m going to go tickle my toddler (who is up too early from his nap, mind you) and swallow my cold coffee and find the joy in being home with my kids.  There is always some to be found.  Usually in a giggle or a shared spitty cracker or a silly face or a new word.
Wishing you a joyful today, even if it’s a hard one.

Gifts and Souvenirs for Minimalist Moms

… or people about whom you say, “They’re hard to buy for!”
One word.  UPGRADE.
This has been my shopping philosophy for myself, anyway, since going all KonMari on my household.  Consider replacing something the recipient already has, but getting them a fancier/better quality item. This can be a little tricky if you don’t know them well (it could come off as judgy) so be careful that what you’re replacing is not an heirloom or favorite old battered item.
Examples?  Better oven mitts.  The kind that fit on either hand.
Fancy hand soap or hand cream
A high-quality spill-proof Thermos-like coffee cup
Longer charging cord for laptop, cell phone, etc.
A really lovely pan, or dutch oven
High quality knives
No, a keychain is not really useful.  It is clutter.  It might look cool, and the recipient might actually put it on his/her keys, but it is clutter non-the-less.
Examples?  Kitchenwares.  I have received and loved potholders from Hawaii, and a rolling pin from Disney World.
Clothing items, IF you know the recipient’s style well enough.  (Chances are if they’re a minimalist, they have a carefully cultivated wardrobe.  Perhaps loungewear pieces.)
Food items from that locale (fruit or coconut products from tropical vacations, sourdough from San Francisco, cherry preserves from Wisconsin, apple butter from Vermont…)
Three words: STUFF TO EAT
I love food gifts!  Trying to live simply also generally involves a budget (and you know we love a budget here on MCM!) so I don’t usually splurge on “fancy” food items.  Homemade foods are often wonderful, as well.
Examples I have actually received:
Home-canned pickles
Local honey
Artisan bread
A ham
Good quality wine or spirits
“Fancy” soda