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February is here, which means we are one month closer to spring. Overall, it hasn’t been a bad winter, but it has been a bit unpredictable. One day we wear all of our winter gear and have inches of snow, and then a few days later it’s muddy and feels like the first days of spring. It’s hard to adjust to the back and forth precipitation and temperatures.

We are ready for spring around our house, in fact, I’m so ready I skipped over decorating the house with snowmen this year.

To brighten things up around here in this dreary February (well at least for those of us living in the Midwest) I’m bringing a few of my favorite things.

Alright, so my first two are going demonstrate what a huge nerd I am.

Post-its

It’s true, I love Post-its. I’m not sure I could live without post-its in my life. I use them for everything including notes, to-do-lists, to mark pages I want to hold in books, and even as entertainment for the kids.

In my book, all post-its are great (small, big, with lines, without lines, fun shapes, tab post-its, etc.). When it comes to post-its, I am completely brand loyal. Post-it brand is by far superior, and I don’t even waste money on the other brands.

 

The post-it tabs are great for marking chapters in textbooks, or where you are in a bible study or journal.

One particularly long car ride with the girls Amelia was melting down. I don’t blame her, six hours in a carseat for a two year old can be pretty tough. There isn’t much to entertain them, and we don’t do movies in the car. One day at home, we had discovered her love of post-its. I had some post-its in my bag (doesn’t everyone have a variety of post-its on hand for an emergency?). I pulled out the little tab ones and handed them over. The cost for those was approximately $3, which was well worth the whole hour of quiet we got out of Amelia when she started playing with them. They were stuck all over the car and herself, but the best part – they are easy to take off and throw away.

Did you know that post-its were created in 1968 when a scientist failed at making a super strong adhesive? They were marketed as post-its in 1979. Proof that great things can come from failures.

Smead Poly File Jackets

I love these so much that I put them on my Christmas list. And yes, I did receive them for Christmas, thanks to my brother-in-law.  The file jackets are great for being organized in your office, with projects and specifically with your Sunday basket.

Unlike a regular file folder, you don’t have to worry that anything will fall out the sides. It is so easy to keep a lot of information on one topic together and secure enough to transport to and from meetings.  I find it most useful to organize projects this way.

If you are organizing with these, you can use a label maker or post-its to label each folder.

Wireless headphones

Brian got some of these for his birthday back in August, and I thought they were cool but wasn’t sure I’d like them. I figured it was one more technology thing that I could somehow mess up or have to remember to charge. It is true; I do have to remember to charge them, but not that often.

Brian bought me a pair for Christmas, and I LOVE them. I don’t have to worry about a cord getting caught in things. Also, I can leave my phone in one room and wander the whole first floor of the house cleaning without needing to move my phone. They are awesome, and even a non-techy like me can figure them out. I did have trouble once, but I just didn’t hold the on button down long enough.

 

Rodan + Fields

This is a skincare company founded by two dermatologists. They are the same people who brought you ProActiv. I kept seeing before and after pictures on Facebook, and a friend was sending out free samples for people to try.

Finally, I tried it and was wowed.

It’s no secret how frugal I am, so I do not spend a lot of money on beauty products at all. My face wash was pretty inexpensive and I never wore make-up, except for a little cover-up over blemishes..

I decided to give it a try because I wasn’t happy with my breakouts and skin in general.  It is not cheap, but it is worth every penny. I absolutely love the UnBlemish and Redefine products. I use one in the morning and the other in the evening. They have a money back guarantee so you can always return the product if you are not happy. I do not sell the product, nor do I get anything for anyone else trying it. I honestly think this is the best face care product on the market. This is the one beauty expense that is a complete splurge, but well worth it to me.

 

Local YMCA

I love working out. Alright maybe I don’t always love working out, but I love how I feel after I work out. I used to be a member of a smaller gym close to our house that had an excellent weight lifting room. A couple of years ago I made the switch to the YMCA for logistical reasons, and I haven’t looked back.

The YMCA offers a lot of FREE group exercise classes. There is a kidzone, so I can drop Amelia off at daycare while I go and work out. They also have a space for kids too old for kidzone, but not ready to be on there own at the Y to play too. There are plenty of machines, free weights two pools, and even an indoor track.

The trainers I have had in my group exercises classes were great too. They always keep the class new and exciting, and they are knowledgeable. There is a wide variety of classes, and people are friendly. My favorite parts are the sauna and steam room. I LOVE to sit them after I work out. There is something magical about sweating it out with a good book or sitting with my eyes closed at the end of my workout. I breath better and I can feel some of my anxiety melting away when I am in there.

Every YMCA has different amenities, but I encourage you to check yours out. Or find a gym that offers the amenities that are important to you. Go regularly to the gym. It is good for you physically, emotionally and socially.

That’s it for my favorites things list for this month. Be sure to check out my previous favorite things posts. Feel free to share some of your favorite things in the comments.

 

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