Summer: Updated

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I have been on a bit of a hiatus from blogging the last couple of weeks because I have been busy! I have not had a summer this busy in a looooonnng time and I am loving it! I was telling my husband that I feel like a kid again, that is how much I have enjoyed this summer thus far.

It all started when I made my Summer To-Do List. I am a big fan of making lists and checking things off of them, so I figured making a list of things to do this summer would maximize my fun. It has been working, I have been scratching things off and doing more than what is listed.

But all this activity made me feel like I was hitting a summer slump on Wednesday (all this playing like a kid sure makes me tired, like taking naps every day after Vacation Bible School tired). So I figured recapping what I have been doing here on the blog would inspire me to keep going!

The highlight of the summer so far has been having our friends visit from Arizona for about a week. The stayed with us for a few nights and then headed further north towards Portland to stay with Anthony’s aunt.  While they were up there they were still close enough for me to tag along on their adventures every day. We explored the Oregon Capitol building and downtown Salem.  We went to the coast, picked blueberries after church, played games, went to the park by our house, went hiking, explored the Portland Rose Garden, ate Voodoo Doughnuts, swam and played with dogs, goats, donkeys and alpacas. It was a blast. When they left it was tough to say goodbye, but it made me want to visit Arizona sooner rather than later!


After they were on their way to the next adventure, Anthony and I got busy with our house projects again. We love our house, but it is lacking in storage so we are getting creative with storage solutions.  Just today I hung some baskets in the pantry and learned I am left handed when it comes to using a drill! Getting everything the way we like it is going to be a long process.   Every project costs money and we are still catching up with our initial move-in costs. One thing that has made the money flowing out of our pockets a little easier to deal with Ebates. Ebates is an online button you install on your browser toolbar and it lets you know if the online stores you are shopping at offer cash back and alerts you to their coupons. It works with Lowes, Kohls, Norstrom and many others! At the end of the quarter any cash back you have earned shopping at online retailers after you have activated your Ebates button will be sent to you in a check. My first check was only $8.00 but with all of our home improvements I have wracked up over $100 this quarter in cash back! I am looking forward to that check and so is Anthony! It doesn’t cost you any extra to use, so sign up today by clicking the button below.
Ebates Coupons and Cash Back


I hung five of these shelves in the pantry to provide extra shelf space

Anthony and I are making a huge effort to prioritize projects that we choose to take on in the house. Last week we installed window coverings on four of the six windows that will need them. The two that are left can remain uncovered because they are in the two bedrooms we are only using as offices/playrooms. Window coverings are not cheap, but we needed them on the other windows to help cool our house down since we do not have air conditioning right now.  For our latest project Anthony is working on installing a ceiling fan in our big front room to help move the air around.  It is proving to be trickier than anticipated because we keep discovering we are missing a few tools or parts to get the job done right. We are going to keep plugging away and are trying to have a housewarming party for family and close friends next month so they can see our house. It won’t be perfect, I doubt we will even have a dining table by then, but we know our family won’t mind and it gives us a reason to keep going on the projects!


We put flags up on both the front and back of the house and I love it!


Our entry way so far! I painted the mail center a few weeks back.

I have also been writing my school’s Family Handbook and working a bit on curriculum this summer as well. It has been nice to have summer homework to help me keep a schedule, even when I am working from home. If you know anyone looking for an affordable private education tell them to look up Cascade View Christian School in Sublimity (they can see a little of what I have been working on, as our mission statement just went up on the website). It is a quick drive from South Salem to the school and we are currently enrolling preschool and 1st-8th grade (Kindergarten is full).  Speaking of Kindergarten, I volunteered for the Kindergarten Vacation Bible School class at Morning Star Community Church this week and had a blast! I have missed working with Kindies so it was so fun to be around them once again. I like the independence of my 2nd and 3rd graders, but man, there is nothing like a five year old!

In between all of my summer fun and work I have been trying new recipes and have been happy to have food box subscription services to help me out on busy nights.  HelloFresh is having a great deal right now for new customers for $50 off your first two boxes! Having all the ingredients (minus salt, pepper and olive oil) sent straight to your house makes cooking a lot easier in the busy summer months. Click below to get the offer.

Special Offer! $50 Discount on your First two Boxes! Code HF50SUMMER. Valid for new customers only. Classic, Veggie or Family Box. Ends 7/31/16. Eat fresh & healthy – Shop Now

HelloFresh delivers great recipes and fresh ingredients to your home each week.

What an amazing three weeks it has been!  I cannot express how blessed I feel to have had all of these experiences so far this summer. I can’t wait to see what else is in store!

What have you been up to? Do you have any storage ideas for a house that doesn’t even have one linen closet? Let me know in the comments! Don’t forget to follow me on Instagram @whitksmith to see what else I am up to.

Until next time,

I love you more than the ocean breeze and hiking through trees,



Give the gift of Treatsie artisan sweets!


2 thoughts on “Summer: Updated

  1. So fun!

    Since you asked for storage ideas, I will share what we have done in our 1957 ranch with little storage compared to many homes built today. I have linen baskets sized to hold folded wash cloths, hand towels, and rolled up full-sized towels. And I use the mini-drawers for medicine in the big cupboard in the bathroom (I’ll DM you a pic on IG).

    You’ll figure out what works for you soon enough!

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