Boy, the twins keep me busy! So busy that I haven't had a chance to blog about the amazing vendors and fun we had at the NW BabyFest Shower Show, so figured better late than never!
Here are my favorite items and vendors from the show.
That's all I have time to share today as the twins just woke up from their afternoon nap, but enjoy!!!! More to follow soon!!!
*Disclosure: I bought VIP tickets for the show, so I did receive some free samples and coupons from some of these vendors - other products I purchased myself - any affiliate links are noted with an asterix (and thank you in advance for using them - when you use these links you pay exactly the same but amazon redirects a small amount of the purchase price to bloggers like me, which helps fund my blog :) All opinions are my own. And I'm pretty picky!
To say I’m rather partial to the odd drop of good wine might be just a wee bit of an understatement. Don’t get me wrong – I don’t have to have it, but there’s nothing better than relaxing at the end of a long day with a yummy glass of cold New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc or an Oregon Pinot Noir and a cheese platter. Even if I’m only allowed half a glass because I’m nursing.
I love a bargain. I also love to belong to groups. It’s a thing! So I have found myself “collecting” wine clubs over the years. Yesterday I was chatting with a friend about what makes a good wine club versus a great wine club, versus one that’s not worth it.
Here’s what we concluded:
There are five main benefits of being in a wine club for the consumer (IMHO):
1. Access to unique wines that might not hit the shelves of your local supermarket or liquor store
2. Discounts – who doesn’t love a discount!
3. Free tasting benefits for you and hopefully for your friends – makes for a fun weekend activity!
4. Exclusive wine club member events – ambiance and social aspects and you get to meet and chat with the winemaker(s)
5. You know your money is going to the winemaker and winery, not to a long line of middlemen and stores
What are the benefits to the wine makers?
1. Built in market
2. Ability to budget based on projected sales to club members
3. Feedback from club members
4. Relationship building with repeat customers makes it fun for winemakers
5. Higher returns than selling through a middleman
So what makes a great wine club?
1. No joining fee. A year commitment is fine, but don’t charge me to buy your wine
2. Exclusive wines that are not available to the public. Make me feel special! I love being able to order special wines!
3. Exclusive pickup parties and other events that are not open to the public. See #2 above. Arborbrook vineyard here in Oregon hosts fabulous pickup parties with food and tastings, and we all have a ball!
4. Free tastings for me and at least a few friends. If I love your vineyard and wines, I will become an evangelist. We naturally evangelize when we love something and we can share special benefits with our friends. If I can bring some friends to taste for free, I get to feel generous, they feel special, and you get to introduce your wine to a potential new client and club member. It is win-win. One of my wine clubs, Ponzi, just charged me $15 for a friend’s tasting when she came with me to pick up my wine. It was especially galling since I’ve been pregnant and busy with the twins and haven’t visited in over a year. So it's hardly like I’m there every weekend benefiting from my free tastings! And although Ponzi have a gorgeous new tasting room in Sherwood, it is big and fairly impersonal. This was in stark contrast to my wine club membership at Arborbrook vineyard, where the winemaker remembers us, is super friendly, and lets us bring up to 10 friends for free tastings! We’ve never taken more than two, but knowing we can makes us feel special. Trust us, if we’re oenophiles, chances are our friends are too, and quite a few of the friends we’ve taken to Arborbrook Vineyards have become members. Win win win. I also have to give a shout out to our friends at Vitis Ridge, whose wine club we LOVED – great wine, discounts, and a secret tasting room at the owners house close to our home! Sadly Vitis Ridge is for sale (want to buy a vineyard?) so the wine club has wound down but it was fun while it lasted!
5. Discounts. Most wine clubs give you 10-20% off additional wine that you buy on top of the club selections. I always find things at the tasting that I love and get a few extra bottles.
Online wine clubs
I’m originally from Waiheke Island, New Zealand, often called the “Island of Wine”. Now we live on the edge of wine country in Oregon, so we’re a little spoiled - I'm surrounded by great wine and some great wine-buff friends to enjoy it with. But what do you do if you don't live near any decent vineyards? Or if you love wine that comes from more than 100 miles away? Or you have twins and it is hard to get to go wine tasting and visit the local vineyards? I’ve recently become a member of Naked Wines (affiliate link). This is a variation on a wine club: once you qualify to become an “angel” or member, you pay $40 a month. However, it is different to most wine clubs in that this $40 becomes a credit on your account, and you use it to buy whatever wines you want. Naked Wines use your money to fund a lot of small winemakers to make their dream wines, and you get to chat with the winemakers online, watch videos, and rate the wines that you receive. More win-win. They offer exclusive wines for angels and deep discounts, and it is shipped directly to your door with a money back guarantee. And they often have unique wines from small vineyards in New Zealand, Australia, and other countries (Spanish Rioja!) that you just don't see in most liquor stores or supermarket aisles! We’ve been members for just a couple of months, and three cases in, we’ve been really enjoying it!
Use the links in this blog to NakedWines, and they'll give you a $100 gift certificate to use off any case of 12 wines (the cheapest case is currently $160 meaning you'll pay just $60 for the case). The gift certificate is one time use and for new non members only. There are also some other restrictions that you can read about on their site.
What are your favorite wine clubs and why?
You’ll find lots of stories online about twins being a big cause of divorce, and it might freak you out. Maybe you’ve just found out you’re having twins and you’re wondering how you’ll cope? Yes, having our twins has been work, but it has been the cause of a lot more laughter than fighting or tears in our house and if anything, it has made us closer together. How do we do it? What can you do to help protect your marriage while raising twins? Here’s my advice, (for what its worth) and in no particular order.
1. Encourage your spouse to look after him or herself. Babies teach you how much we reflect the behavior shown to us. If you smile at a baby, they smile back. If you scowl or cry, they get upset and cry or yell. Older humans are like that too; only we get better at disguising it. So be nice to your spouse. Encourage them to go out with some friends, sleep in the guest room to get a good nights sleep, or go get a massage (in my case I have to book hubby in for one or he’ll never go!). In a healthy relationship, you’ll find that kindness reflected back to you, plus you’re setting a great example for your kids.
2. Don’t stress out if you catch your spouse in a lie. It happens. You find out hubby has been getting a beer with friends instead of working late in the office. Agh! Is lying a good thing? No. But he (or she) is stressed too and knows you're stressed, and most likely doesn’t want to feel like a shit by telling you he spent an hour chilling drinking beer or wine or hanging out with friends while you had your hands full of kids. Sleep deprivation is used as a torture technique, and people will say anything to catch a break after enough sleep deprivation. If you catch them - which is usually the case – (esp when they get tagged in photos in facebook!), use it as an opportunity to practice being kind (see above). Just say "hey let's figure this out together - we got this!" Having faith in your spouse is hard but remember the reflection thing? If you tell him (or her) he's a lying shit, he'll likely throw it back at you. If you tell him, “Hey I get it, go have a beer with your friends” (and mean it), he'll likely do the same for you.
3. Sleep train! We started sleep training the twins at six months – they had started sleeping through the night at 8 weeks off and on, but after the four month regression, all that went out the window. If your twins are not regularly sleeping through the night and getting a couple of good naps (1.5-2 hours each during the day) by six months (and if they’re safe, fed, and dry and your pediatrician says it is ok), it is not the end of the world to let them grizzle themselves to sleep. Honestly the first night I felt like such bad momma but that lasted one night. Now they go to sleep in about 60 seconds, and I feel like super mom! Warn everyone within hearing distance that you're sleep training and just do it. I got my evenings back with my hubby and elder daughter instead of us all walking around with screaming babies in carriers desperately trying to get them to sleep! Yes, they still wake up in the night sometimes but not nearly as much, and the added bonus is they both seem better at sleeping through the other one crying.
4. Look after your other kids too. Whether they are two, four or 11, bad behavior can surface when twins (or any new siblings! arrive!). And you won’t have a lot of time and patience to deal with it! It isn’t easy to add twins to the mix no matter how old siblings are! Having to share mommy, daddy, space, possibly toys. But I don’t think you need to single out older children to show them you still love them. I find that family outings picked by the older child are very effective. Just give them options that will work with twin babies! We’ve gone to the zoo, the aquarium, the movies and everyone is happy. Big sister feels like she is prioritized, the babies get a different activity, and we all get to have some family fun in the process. I loved the super nanny show and book and love and consequences. The naughty step was a godsend for us with our willful 3-year-old!!! (Who is now 11!)
5. Spend less. This is a tough one because babies can be expensive, and money stresses a marriage faster than anything else. And it doesn’t matter how much you earn – unless you’re Jeff Bezos, you can pretty much always outspend what you earn, and that’s what marketers want you to do! Read some blog posts on how to save money with babies, check out Pinterest, or ask your local Moms Club (a great resource if you haven’t yet joined) for tips. My favorites: Freezer meals instead of take out or eating out, buying used baby items from Facebook groups instead of new, trading for babysitting, and asking around for hand me downs… there are lots of ways to save money, and it all adds up! Take care of your items and save the boxes and when you’re done with them, you can turn around and sell them. Facebook groups are my favorite - or eBay for smaller items or pass them along to someone else. I always pay it forward, giving away things that I’ve been given and it is good manners in my world to ask when someone gives me a hand me down if they’d like it back after I’m done with it. Plus, making room for baby and then baby proofing are great times to turn some of the clutter into cash – check out my blog post (coming soon) about selling things on eBay and Facebook groups.
6. Use some time saving delivery services. Having no food in the cupboard is stressful. So is dragging out infant twins to go to the grocery store when you’re tired and/or hungry. Take advantage of the many delivery services for groceries and household items. See my blog post on my favorite sources for online and delivery items (coming soon).
7. Divide and conquer but work together. That sounds like a contradiction but now is the time to play to your strengths! Don’t suddenly expect your spouse who can barely find the kitchen to become a gourmet chef! Being short of time and sleep deprived does not bring out one’s inner Martha Stewart. Figure out the bare minimum things that need done around the house for you all to survive, put up a chart and divide according to who can do what most easily. In our case, hubby can cook a couple of things well, so he does dinner once a week otherwise we’d be eating chili and spaghetti non stop. We also discovered that he’s a pretty good sous chef, so we do a big shop once a week or two and prep freezer meals so they can just be pulled out during the week. Our oldest daughter makes a mean salad and has been learning to sort and load dirty laundry. And our new thing, since the babies are now going to sleep at 7, is that we are all spending 20 minutes outside doing yard work after dinner (baby monitor in hand!). There is a real sense of collaboration and 20 minutes feel easy – we stop before we’ve had a chance to get tired and crabby!
8. Play and laugh about the little things. It goes against a lot of things you might read, and every relationship is different, but you don’t need to start doing weekly date nights or forcing togetherness with extravagant outings or gifts. You might find that the best way to reconnect is to have breakfast in bed while the babies are taking a nap. Or play a board game! (our new favorite is apples to apples - there is nothing like an hour of laughter to feel human again!) Just remember to spend some time playing – whether it is with your babies or after they have gone to bed (the sleep training thing really pays off!)
9. Find someone positive to talk to, in person or online! Looking after two crying babies, maybe other kids, trying to work, cook, bathe… all sounds so stressful! I know or me I lump everything together when I get stressed, and everything seems terrible and overwhelming. My Mum is good at talking me down off the fence, so hopefully you have someone in your life, either a parent or friend or sibling who can calm you down when it all gets overwhelming. Find an online forum if there is no one in your area – my facebook twins group is amazing for venting and supporting each other through those crazy days when nothing goes right!
10. What about counseling? If things start spiraling, don’t be afraid to ask for help. But IMHO, until you get some sleep, counseling isn't going to help much - it's a bit like trying to tell someone to breathe underwater! And probably things will be said that no one means just because you are so exhausted! Even the sweetest people turn into raving lunatics who can barely speak English when they are sleep deprived.
I hope some of this helps! Remember this too shall pass. And it could have been triplets ;) And I’d love to hear what you do to support your family life through the addition of twins!
When we bought our first vacation rental, we were very lucky to buy it fully furnished. No, the furniture wasn't exactly what we'd choose, but it was so easy to literally bring a toothbrush to our new beach house!
Over the past three years, we've replaced much of the furniture and fittings with new items that suit our taste better. But this year, we're in the fun position of outfitting a brand new vacation rental! It is very exciting, but a little overwhelming, and expensive!
One of my pet peeves with vacation rentals is an uncomfortable bed. But there is an overwhelming variety of mattresses to choose from. How to decide what to put in your vacation rental? Here are my five tips:
1. Go for medium price. We made the mistake of putting a very expensive all natural latex and wool mattress in our vacation rental because we liked it. Within a couple of months, we discovered a guest had experienced an accident and we ended up having to haul the mattress to the trash. Accidents happen and it is much more palatable to trash a $500 mattress than a $2000 one. Despite what mattress salespeople tell you, you don't need to spend the price of a car to get a decent nights sleep!
2. Tempurpedic. People either love them or hate them. They're really expensive (see number 1 above!) so unless you can score a closeout deal, I'd pass.
3. Memory foam. There are some gorgeous memory foam beds available now. My picks use CertiPUR foam (no off gassing) and are made in the USA - I ALWAYS buy things made in the USA where possible and memory foam is a great example - the price point is not much more for made in the USA versus imported from China. My favorite memory foam mattress is the Brentwood Home 11-Inch Gel HD Memory Foam Mattress, Made in USA, CertiPUR-US, 25 Year Warranty, Natural Wool Sleep Surface and Bamboo Cover (affiliate link) - I love that it has no formaldehyde, features a cooling gel to avoid that overly hot feeling that some memory foam has, and includes an all natural wool sleep surface and bamboo (renewable and eco-friendly). Best of all it is amazingly comfortable. When you're buying memory foam, buy CertiPUR. CertiPUR-US approved foams are:
If you have guests with chemical sensitivities, asthma, or kids, they'll thank you for spending a few extra dollars! We have a King size Brentwood in one of our Master suites and guests love it! We also use these on the bunk beds as we don't want kids sleeping on anything that off gasses.
4. Innerspring. A quality innerspring is expensive but some guests just love their Beautyrest! Keep an eye out for closeouts, model changes and clearance events! You can sometimes find good ones on groupon goods of all places (affiliate link). We scored a gorgeous high end model for our new house as the models changed over at our local furniture store. It is soft and squishy but still supportive.
5. Sleep Number. I love my Sleep Number bed. If they were a bit less expensive, I'd put them in a rental since everyone can adjust to their own preference. However, see #1 above!
6. Mattress Pads
The biggest tip I can give anyone who has kids, or humans, sleeping in their beds, is to get a quality mattress pad. Actually it is not just humans - my sisters incontinent dog ruined a mattress at our place! I don't think anyone pees in the bed on purpose, but accidents happen and a good quality cover can save a mattress. In fact, the general consensus is that a good mattress pad can double the life of your mattress. Yes, the good ones may cost $100 or more, but they are worth every penny. I love the selection at wayfair supply. Don't ruin your guest's sleep with one of those nasty plastic waterproof liners. They end up taking them off!
7. Replacements: Finally, budget to replace your beds at least every five years!
What is your favorite type of bed when you're in a vacation rental? Take our poll!
I have become a bit addicted to photobooks. It is like scrapbooking for the modern age and sure beats showing people photos on your laptop (boring!). I've been creating photobooks for our new twins - I'm determined to do a better job than I did for our eldest! She doesn't have a finished baby book yet (and she's 11!)
There are four services I've used for photobooks. I shop around based on price and coupons!
Fairly easy to use interface. Checkout does not work on safari so use Chrome if you're a mac person (like me!) Until March 23, 2015 use the code 1FREEBOOK and get an 8x8 20 page phonebook for $8! Keep an eye on your Safeway catalinas as they often print free coupons for a free phonebook from shutterfly. You can often also get free photobook coupons from the diaper companies (pampers etc) if you sign up for their info, target, motherhood maternity - keep an eye out! The best thing is that the projects don't seem to expire.
They often have groupons! Worth keeping an eye out for these as long as you use them before they expire. There is nothing worse than expired groupons - the credit for what you paid is usually not enough to do anything. The projects only save for 30 days and this has been a problem as it is amazing how fast 30 days go by when you have twins to look after!
This is probably my least favorite interface but they have good coupons from time to time. I find the interface crashes a lot on Mac but if I can find a deal I'll suffer through it.
Apple iPhoto has its own integrated service but it is very pricey and I've never seen a coupon for it. The books are nice quality though and it is easy to layout if you're used to iPhoto! Apple did drop their prices a year or so ago, so if you haven't checked out the service recently, it is worth reviewing again. An 8.5x11 with 20 gorgeous pages (bled to the edge if you so choose) is only $29.99 hardcover and 19.99 softcover, which compares pretty well to the other services above.
What photobook services do you use?
If you found this post googling "damage deposits", you're not alone! A lot of owners and vacation home renters are unsure about damage deposits. When we first started renting out our Oregon beach house, the agency we picked didn't allow owners to ask for a damage deposit. We rented out through them for three months in the offseason, and in four weekends had several things damaged. We then started renting out ourselves, and requiring a damage deposit. With over 50 rentals, we have had only two minor damage incidents (knock on wood!).
Damage deposits are not for ordinary wear and tear or to cover rental, but to cover things that get broken (or damaged!). In our case, a drunk guest of the renter fell against a trellis panel, ripping it off the deck, and the renter asked us to deduct the repair cost ($80) from his damage deposit. He was mortified. The second incident was when a tap in the bathtub was smashed off – we're not sure how one manages to do that but again the renter let us know her guest had done this, and we deducted the cost ($50) from the damage deposit.
Here are the top six reasons owners might want to have a damage deposit, and why renters benefit from staying at a house that asks for one:
The three main vacation rental websites make deposits easy to collect and refund. The procedure does vary a little:
Some owners collect damage deposits by mailed check – I think this creates an extra administrative burden and a risk of bounced checks (which cost!), but it is personal preference.
What's the difference between damage and wear and tear?
I always say to err on the side of generosity. Glasses get broken. Cups get chipped. Towels get stained. I'm not going to deduct for every chipped glass from someone's damage deposit. If every colored towel in your vacation home gets used for the hot tub and gets ruined by bleach spots, that's reckless damage. If one gets damaged, I will call it wear and tear. We allow 10% of our gross revenue each year to replace items that get worn out and doing maintenance and repairs on our vacation home.
What To Do About Mismatched Items
That brings me to an important side note: Is your beach house a great place to send all your mismatched yard sale finds and things you no longer need at home? Maybe! If you're going for a shabby chic cottage look and have a good eye, I've seen this done very successfully. However, in a higher end vacation rental, this might not convey the luxury look you're going for. Hit your local HomeGoods store or the January sales at Macy's, and buy a new set of glasses, dinner set, and stock up. When you buy a new set, get two so you can replace any that get broken without having to replace everything. If you need to replace a set and have leftovers from your old sets, donate them – you get a tax write-off and your local women's shelter, or goodwill will appreciate it. We buy new sets of towels for our rental and take the older towels home or turn them into dog towels for our pet-friendly rental.
What has been your experience with damage deposits?
This blog post of mine was previous published on the American College of Healthcare Sciences blog at http://info.achs.edu/blog/bid/217793/holistic-nutrition-10-high-fiber-low-calorie-foods-you-ll-love
To pick these top ten foods, I looked at nutritional value, energy density, and volume. I want to focus on foods that provide a lot of bang for the buck (i.e., keep us full and have high nutritional value with fewer calories than other choices). Fruits and vegetables with lots of water are often lower energy density , but my primary criteria for the list is fiber. Why? Fiber is critical. Remember your grandmother telling you to eat more “roughage”? Well she was right! We need at least 25 grams a day, and ideally 35 grams a day, for a healthy bowel. I think the correlation between high fiber diets and lower cancer rates is not just from fiber but is synergistic, since most high fiber diets are high in fruits and vegetables, which are also high in antioxidants and other phytonutrients. But, fiber is clearly also very important and few Americans get enough.
Here is my current top ten list of high fiber low calorie foods:
So that’s our top ten... But wait! There's more!!!
Act: Using your favorite app (mine is MyFitnessPal available on the app store and at myfitnesspal.com) track your food intake and see how much fiber you’re really getting! Try a fiber day and see how much you can pack in!
Share: What are your favorite foods? Visit this list in list.ly and VOTE for your favorites and ADD your own suggestions!!!
Read more: Cassidy, A., De Vivo, I., Liu, Y., Han, J., Prescott, J., Hunter, D., et al. (2010). Effects of fiber on telomere length? Associations between diet, lifestyle factors, and telomere length in women. Am J Clin Nutr 91(5): http://www.ajcn.org/content/91/5/1273.long
There are many papers on nutrition and fiber at pubmed.org – find your favorite and post a comment to share it with others!
Update: According to a 2011 International Food Information Council survey of 1,000 people, 72 percent of North Americans reported that they were trying to consume more fiber.
If you’ve been watching the show “Vacation Home for Free” on HGTV, you might have started thinking about what it takes to buy and run a successful vacation rental to offset the cost of owning a vacation home.
I’ve been managing and renting out vacation homes successfully for 25 years, and I get lots of questions from friends and family about how I do it, so I'm gathering together my (often random and not guaranteed) tips for success in a series of blog posts that might be helpful for you! The more popular vacation rentals are, the more often people will think vacation rental first, before booking a hotel, so it is “win-win” for everyone when vacation rentals are successful!
This will be a series of blog posts, covering (in no particular order):
1. Where to buy your vacation home for a successful vacation rental
2. What to stock in your vacation rental
3. Clean clean clean – the most important thing for a vacation rental – what to clean and when
4. Where to buy supplies for your vacation rental
5. Taking great photographs of your vacation rental
6. Top websites to promote and get bookings for your vacation rental: What differentiates Homeaway from VRBO from AirBnB?
7. Social media marketing for your vacation rental
8. Leveraging AirBnB
9. How to promote your vacation rental on VRBO and Homeaway
10. FlipKey and Tripadvisor Tips
11. Managers and management fees for your vacation rental
12. Remember your please and thank you – communicating with your vacation renters
13. Amenities that book – and which ones to to include in your listing keywords
14. Running the numbers – what to expect to spend to run your vacation rental
If there are other topics you’d like to see covered, please leave me a comment!
Visit the vacation rentals that we own or help manage here:
Seascape, Classic Beach House at Olivia Beach, Lincoln City Oregon Coast, United States: http://www.vrbo.com/558197
Villa Abela in Syros, Cyclades, Greece: http://www.vrbo.com/558178
Beach house on Waiheke Island, New Zealand: https://www.airbnb.com/rooms/3477111
Disclosure of Material Connection: All opinions are my own and do not necessarily represent the views of my employer. This blog may contain affiliate links and advertising. When you use the links in this blog, I may receive a small commission to help fund my blogging efforts. It costs you nothing extra and I greatly appreciate your support! If I review products or services, I will disclose if I have been provided any discount or free items in exchange for my review. In either case, I give my opinion honestly. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
Bob's Red Mill cafe and store is an icon in Milwaukie, Oregon and well worth a visit, but you can also arrange group field trips to the actual factory! It's free and it's fun and engaging - a great way to connect with our food suppliers! Kids can learn all about the history of Bobs Red Mill, including the arson attack that burned down the original mill and left Bob and his wife to start over (teaching kids about perseverance!). Way too many kids don't know that flour comes from wheat berries and cornmeal comes from actual ground corn!
The tour is very informative: The kids get to interact with all the types of grain and products that the factory produces and you get to look through both the gluten free and regular sides of the factor. There are amazing old millstones and grain mills.
Don't miss the cafe and store just down the road. Be sure to sit upstair near the pianos - that's where we found Bob himself, who played us several tunes before handing out free cookie tokens to the kids! Be sure to sign up for their mailing list - I often get two for one coupons for products in the store and lunches!
Afterwards, pop over the road to Dave's Killer Bread factory store, where you can score $2 frozen loaves! (Buy 6 for $12 special)
We had a huge dumping of snow last week here in Oregon. It was unusually heavy and followed a period of very mild sunny weather!
We'd all been lulled into thinking it was going to be a lovely winter. We've had some activity with the bees coming out consistently on several days when the mercury hit 50 degrees!!!! Very odd for January and February in Oregon!
This snow was powdery and light, and fell straight down, blocking many of the hive entrances. We also had a forecast of ice rain following, which creates a very solid layer that the wind can't blow off!
We have our hives wrapped for winter - mostly to protect them against the high winds we get up here on the hills, but luckily one of my Facebook beekeeping groups reminded me to head outside and brush the snow away from the entrance. That way the bees can make their cleaning flights when the weather allows.
Now we'll just wait for another 50 degree day so we can open the hives and take a peek at their supplies. We don't feed sugar water, but we save frames of honey to put back into the hive if the bees need it in Spring. Oregon blossom times can vary by weeks depending on the weather, and the bees can't wait if its a long wet spring!
How are your bees doing this winter?
Hi! I'm Erika and I'm an info addict! I love travel, vacation rentals, online education, primal and paleo living, crunchy (ish) parenting, holistic nutrition, lavender, bees, animals, technology, and sustainable living. This blog is a central space to pull together my research and writing on a wide variety of lifestyle topics! I hope you'll join me for a few minutes and share your thoughts in the comments :)