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Modest Fashion Friday: Cute and Casual



Welcome to Modest Fashion Friday! Each week, I feature a modest fashion outfit I have worn recently. Hope you enjoy and maybe even get inspired!

This is a cute, casual outfit that I can pull together with ease and look presentable without looking too dressed up. It consists of several of my favorite pieces.

I love this denim pencil skirt. It looks great with almost any tee shirt. The blue tee is so comfy and I really love the fit. Of my extensive scarf collection, this blue ombre one is a favorite of mine. I love the crinkly texture. Plus, it is nice and lightweight but still has enough size to it that it can be very versatile. And these blue flats have seen a lot of use. They’re just so perfect with so many outfits. The earrings are my absolute favorites. They have some beautiful scroll detailing on them. Even though they are quite large, they are light and comfortable. They are a classy, subtle way to make a statement with an accessory.

I threw my hair into a cute topknot, which perfectly finishes off the fun, casual look of this outfit.


What I Wore

Skirt: Thredup
Tee shirt: Dressing Your Truth
Scarf: thrifted
Shoes: Amazon
Earrings: Dressing Your Truth



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Books I Read This Summer


I read several books over the summer. Some of these books were excellent, some mediocre. Below is a list of the books I read in June, July and August. I’ve included links to where you can find them, if you are interested in reading them yourself.

The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

I’ve never been much of a mystery or psychological thriller reader, but The Girl on the Train grabbed my attention from the beginning and didn’t let go till the end. Maybe it’s because I’m a newbie the suspense genre, but I had no idea “who done it” until very near the close of the book. This book is fast-paced throughout (with some slower sections that gave me a sort of breather, which I liked). The story held a lot of relationship elements. Several powerful themes are explored. Although few of the characters are very likable, I found that I developed a sort of pity for some of them that compelled me to find out what happened to them. The Girl on the Train was a perfect summer (or anytime) read—even for people like me who don’t like suspense fiction.

(Be aware that this book contains language which some readers may find offensive.)

Dug Down Deep by Joshua Harris

This book is a very basic but thorough overview of Biblical doctine. Joshua Harris does a very good job of laying out some important truths in an accessible way. I’d highly recommend this book for new Christians or those who may not have studied doctrine in a systematic approach before. It’s a good way to get your feet wet.

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I am an introvert. Large groups of people drain my energy. I’m not antisocial by any means; I just need time alone to recharge. Quiet by Susan Cain was such an affirming read for me. I found myself nodding my head in agreement throughout much of the book. Finally, someone has articulated what it is like to be an introvert.

Our culture is designed to reward and elevate extroverted behavior. In Quiet, Susan Cain discussed how this effects introverts and how introverts can overcome cultural bias and still be true to ourselves. This is such a helpful book for anyone who is introverted, or anyone who has someone in their work or social sphere who is (which is everyone!).

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell

Elizabeth Gaskell is one of my favorite authors. She lived in England in the Victorian era and wrote several novels. Her novels are, in essence, social commentaries on the times in which she lived. Her finely crafted stories capture the interest of the reader from the beginning and her characters are well developed and sympathetic.

Mrs. Gaskell’s novel, North and South, is set primarily in the north of England in the large manufacturing town of Milton. The story follows Margaret Hale, a young woman who has spent her whole life in the south of England. As a result of unexpected circumstances, Margaret is suddenly uprooted to Milton. Her first impression of the town and its people is not a favorable one. As the story progresses, however, Margaret’s point of view on several matters changes. She eventually learns to see Milton and its residents in a new light. This book is a tale with surprisingly modern themes and I thoroughly enjoyed it, as I have all of Gaskell’s other novels thus far.

Mended: Pieces of a Life Made Whole by Angie Smith

I read Angie Smith’s first book, I Will Carry You—a memoir of her journey through the loss of her daughter—shortly after my own daughter’s passing, and found it very moving.

In Mended, Angie covers several topics in a devotional style. She shares with the reader the ways in which she has learned to heal from past hurts and look to God in faith in life’s most difficult circumstances. It was fairly well written, but I felt at times that it became a bit redundant. It does include many reminders to trust the Lord and allow His healing in your heart and life. Not the most profound book I’ve ever read, but I did enjoy it. I’m glad I read it.

Money Making Mom by Crystal Paine

This book has changed my life! Reading it has opened my eyes to the myriad of ways a stay at home mom like me can make an income without sacrificing time with her family. The author, Crystal Paine, know what she’s talking about in this book. Crystal is the owner of the extremely popular blog, She know her stuff when it comes to being a work at home mom. The information she shares in this book is invaluable. If you are looking for ways to make money from home, I highly recommend you pick up a copy for yourself.

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

This book moved me deeply. This skillfully written novel is a beautiful, though tragic, telling of a lighthouse keeper and his young wife living in isolation on Janus Rock, off the Australian coast, following World War 1. After experiencing the pain of the loss of three pregnancies, the couple find a baby in a boat which has washed up on the shore of Janus. Deciding to keep the baby and raise her as their own, they set in motion a chain of events which will impact the lives of people they would never have expected. This is one of those novels you think about for days after closing it on the last page.

The subject matter was extremely personal to me, and so I found I resonated with the struggles each of the main character experienced. There was no possible way to have a fairy tale ending with this book, but I felt the ending brought a resolution to the story in a poignant way. (This book has been recently made into a movie.)

What have you been reading lately? Leave your comment in the section below. I’d love to know what titles you’ve been enjoying lately.

Be sure to check out these books. They’re all worth reading.


This post may contain affiliate links.

Save Money on Groceries Without Couponing


As the mom of a large family, grocery shopping is a big undertaking. I am always looking for ways to save money on groceries. And I can bet you’re doing the same. I’ve done some couponing in the past, but at a certain point, I found it became too time consuming. Also, because our family deals with several food allergies, it can be difficult to find coupons that fit our needs.

Enter Ibotta.

Ibotta is an amazing little app that gives cash back rebates. Not only can you get rebates on groceries, but also on beauty and personal care items and household supplies as well.

The app is completely free. All you have to do is sign up for a free account with Ibotta. Next you can download the app to your smartphone, scroll through the available rebates, and choose the ones you want to use.

For each rebate, the app asks you to complete a simple task. Examples of these tasks are watching a short video, taking a single question survey, and reading a recipe.

Once you’ve completed the task, you’re ready to shop. Purchase the items you have rebates for—just make sure you pay special attention to exactly what the rebate is for. Check the size of the item you are buying against the one listed on the rebate and make sure they match up. (I know to do this from personal experience. I’ve bought the wrong size of an item before and the rebate wouldn’t work.)

When you get home, just scan the barcode on your items with your phone. Then scan the receipt. It’s as simple as that. Next thing you know, there’s money in your account!

Rebate amounts vary from $0.25 up to $5 (sometimes more), with potential bonus earnings of $1 all the way up to $5 or even $10.

I love Ibotta and use it every time I go shopping for groceries. I have saved so much money on groceries since I started using this app! Plus, it’s just fun to use!

For me, using Ibotta is so much simpler than couponing. I do occasionally use coupons, but I no longer do any regular weekly couponing. One of the great things about using Ibotta is that if you want to, you can stack the Ibotta rebates with coupons and store sales to maximize your savings.

Ibotta is such a fun and simple way to save money on groceries. Try it for yourself and see. 

(Use this referral link  and once you’ve redeemed your first rebate, you’ll get an extra $10 just for signing up.)

Modest Fashion Friday: End of Summer Dress


Welcome to Modest Fashion Friday! Each week, I will feature a modest fashion outfit I have worn recently. Hope you enjoy and maybe even get inspired!


Summer is slowly winding to a close here in New England. The leaves are changing, and wardrobes are beginning to do the same. Still, there have been a few warm days here. I’m soaking in the last of the summer weather by wearing some of my favorite outfits from the past few months. This maxi dress has definitely been a favorite. I love the subtle ombre effect in the skirt. The gray tee is a staple I’ve worn often. The sandals are surprisingly comfy. And the necklace and earrings are new–I absolutely love both! I have a feeling they are going to get a lot of use in the near future.


Where the items came from:

Dress: ThredUp (follow this link and get $10 off your first order)
Tee: thrifted
Shoes: ThredUp
Earrings & necklace: JCPenney
Watch: Walmart

And I just had to share one last pic of my dogs photobombing my shoot. 🙂



What I Want My Daughters to Know About Beauty


I have daughters who are quickly approaching young womanhood. The topic of beauty and appearance is coming up more and more often in our home these days. With our culture so saturated with images of women depicted as simply objects to lust after, or androgynous figures who are no different than men, it can be confusing for young women to know how to think about how they look.

How should our daughters really feel about their own appearances?

For that matter, how should we as grown woman feel about ours?

It’s important to me that my girls have a healthy, balanced view of beauty and femininity. I want them to know it’s okay to want to be pretty, and put effort into our appearance. I also want them to know that we shouldn’t be obsessed with how we look. We shouldn’t think that our appearance somehow makes us better or worse than other people, either.

A pure and beautiful heart is infinitely more important that how we look. My girls need to know this.

How will I instill this in them?

Model a correct mindset for them

One important way I can help my daughters have a healthy view of their appearance is to model it for them. If I am obsessed with my weight, or always complaining about some feature I see as a flaw, or constantly concerned with how others judge my looks, my daughters will follow that example. At the same time, if I put effort into my appearance without letting it become all-consuming, I am showing them a healthy way to look at beauty. It’s important for me to be content with the body God gave me while doing my best to take good care of it. This includes careful grooming, nutrition, and fitness.

Teach them the difference between caring for their appearance and being vain

It’s okay to want to be attractive; it is not okay to be vain about it. Vanity is having an attitude of superiority because of your appearance. It is an unpleasant trait, and certainly one I don’t want my daughters to develop. I want to teach them that God created them the way they are and they owe him gratitude for that. Because He made them, they have a duty to care for their appearance. Simple as that.

Encourage them to focus on developing inner beauty

We’ve all heard the saying, “Beauty is as beauty does.” It’s true, isn’t it? Have you ever met a woman who was outwardly beautiful but swore like a sailor? Or had a mean streak that could leave a wake of despair and destruction a mile wide? Or was so selfish she behaved as if everyone in her life was there to serve and bow down to her? Did it really matter how pretty she was?

I want my daughters to know the importance of being kind and compassionate. It is so much better to be a generous, loving person than to be able to win beauty pageants.

Remind them of their femininity 

As women, our femininity is such a gift! Being a lady is such a privilege. I love to wear pretty, feminine clothes, heels and scarves and jewelry, and I want my girls to embrace their femininity in the same way. No, they don’t have to love heels and scarves, but I hope they will love being women and desire to express that through their appearance. I hope they will want to look like ladies. There are so few ladies left in our culture. What a breath of fresh air it can be to those around us when we bring out our lovely femininity.

Show them beauty can be practical

Our family lives in the country. We have farm animals. We have gardens. And of course, we have plenty of mud. It may not be practical to go around in silk blouses and 4” heels everyday. But I still try to make an effort to put on makeup, dress in a clean and attractive outfit, and fix my hair everyday. I am trying to teach my girls to do the same. I think it’s important to our own sense of wellbeing and overall attitude to look presentable everyday.

Help them appreciate their own unique form of beauty 

Real beauty comes in many forms. We each have our own personal expression of beauty. A woman is always most beautiful when she is being true to who she was created to be. I want my girls to be comfortable with being themselves. That will translate into them becoming their most beautiful selves. Confidence in who they are is a gift I am trying to give all of my children, especially my daughters.

As my girls continue to mature, I am beginning to see each of them develop these views—with their own individual slant. One of my girls is more outdoorsy, yet she still knows how to put together a lovely look for herself. Another of my girls is a girly girl who loves to prettify herself, but she is coming to understand the balance that is needed.

I love seeing my daughters grow and learn in areas like this. It’s such a privilege to able to teach and encourage them as they grow into beautiful young women.

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