Where have I been???

Hey y’all, 

I have one word for you:

WORK

Yeah, child.  Summer vacation ended foe me about 10 days ago and I cried alllllll the way back to work.  I’m getting back in the swing of things so please be patient with me.  I didn’t do a video today because I just did my hair and y’all don’t wanna see that!!  

Oh, for those who are curious, I sectioned my hair into about 10 sections, sprayed it with my DIY mixture and did a two strand twist and put it into Bantus. What’s in my DIY mixture you ask? It is filtered water, about a tablespoon of olive oil and about two tablespoons of aloe vera juice. I put it into a spray bottle and wet my hair very well section by section. Then I dip the tip of my finger into a mixture of grape seed oil and Argan Oil. I work the oil through each section detangling as I go, do a two strand twist and twist it into a Bantu knot. Sometimes I find I need to secure it with a little hair band just to make sure that my ends stay secure. So I will be adding on my satin scarf and calling it a night shortly.

I also want to tell you about something that I am in the habit of doing. I don’t really tell people because they are so judgemental. But I just want to let you know, if you are one of those parents that text their child because you’re downstairs and they’re upstairs, feel no shame!! Yes, I do it all the time. No, I am not going up there to ask 1 or 2 simple questions when the phone is sitting right here at my side. And I know he is probably upstairs playing on his!  Now there is a shameful part. We have an intercom system in our house. Absolutely no excuse to use our phone! So yes, you may freely laugh at that one! 

Okay y’all, I’m going to keep this post short and sweet. I’m so excited that school is about to start. I’m even more excited about my food bill going down, my light bill going down, my water bill going down, you get the drift! I swear if I see the back of my refrigerator and the back of my freezer one more time… These jokers have got to get out of my house!

So anyway, I hope you have enjoyed your summer vacation, I hope you have enjoyed spending time with your children and I hope you have not killed them. I’ll talk with you again soon. 

Until next time,

Love ya!

💋Tonya 

The Best Back To School Shopping Method Yet!

Group of Children Lined Up Against a Wall with One Girl (8-10) Making a Face

Hi guys!

You know what time it is.  Time for school clothes, school supplies, bulk drinks, snacks and fruit cups.  Yuuup, back to school season is upon us.  So, how to cope?  Well I had an idea just hit me up side the head recently (it was Jesus, He didn’t hit me).

DO ALL THAT MESS ONLINE!

It may sound crazy, but if you act now, you can shop online for just about all their stuff and either have it shipped to you or even better, shipped to the store for FREE!!!  So while the lines up front are murder, you’ll be in the fast line!  Let me show you how this works.

  1.  Comparison shop-HARD!  I checked on Dollar Tree, Walmart, Target, Sears, ThredUp (BIG SIDE NOTE:  DON’T SLEEP ON THREDUP.  They specialize in basically new, high end, ‘sposed to be stupid expensive clothing.  And right now, they are giving AN ADDITIONAL 40% OFF WHEN YOU USE THE CODE:  SUMMER.  Yeah, get your self over there! lol)  And definitely don’t forget Office Depot & Aldi.  Yeah, Aldi has some good stuff too!  The kids have gotta have snacks!  And they have a robust back to school effort going on right now.  Child they have lists, blogs, ideas, tips and just a ton of helpful stuff.  Go check it out!  Before I forget, don’t just assume that these dollar places have the best prices.  These other stores are less than half of Dollar Tree’s prices during back to school season!  Do your due diligence!!  And shop the clearance section using filters.  I found a ton of great clothes from Sears when I put “less than $5” as a filter.  They had a million polo shirts, shorts, tees, etc.
  2. Start shopping carts for each store.  If you can stomach it, make an account for each place and fill up your cart.  Get a sum total and get your budget in order.
  3. Plan the best time to pick up.  What do I mean?  Well, think about the worst times to go shopping.  Work around those.  If you have a parent or friend who is a frequenter of that store, they may go do it for you during hours when it’s not a hassle.  Or if you’re really gangsta, take a day off and go pick all of the stuff up you ordered.  I’ve found the best time of day is around 9 or 10 when stores just open.  You get little to no waiting and the staff is not worn out or super grumpy yet.  Or, you can have it shipped to your house!  Now that’s a win-win!  But if you are trying to save time & money, only use home shipping if it’s free or cheaper than the gas you’d spend.
  4. When you get your stuff, be sure to inspect it.  Checking against your shopping cart & your packing list will ensure you have everything you ordered.
  5. Be nosy.  If your child gets the full school supply list, look at what they may need next year.  Get some of that stuff out of the way now. If you got a single grade shopping list (like my middle child did this year), call the school and ask what the next grade up will need.
  6. Stock up!!!!  If you see 10 cent pens, binders or whatever that you know they’ll need year after year, get enough for an entire year.
  7. You can never, ever, ever buy too much notebook paper.  Wait, some of y’all are crazy.  Get like 20 packs if it’s in your means and you’ll not have that issue for a couple years.

Ok, I hope I’ve helped you get some ideas on how to tame the back to school beast.  I’m still working on my shopping carts.  But I tell you what, when I saw that I would only need to spend about $22 to get the kids all of their supplies (not snacks or clothes), I was elated.  ELATED!!

Oh, my final tip.  I make my kids do a fashion show so we can weed through their clothes.

Ever changing teenager

I made the mistake of just telling them to bring down anything that was too small and it almost cost me hundreds of dollars.  Why?  One of them thought they could weed them out just by looking at the tags.  They didn’t realize that clothes aren’t cut the same.  Dodged that bullet!  But making them actually model the clothes (even when they dragged and whined about it) helped them see what they really had and let me see what I really needed to spend money on.  Not to mention that they can grow over 2″ from eating all your food over the summer.  I have them do the following:

  1.  Reach up to the sky.  I should see no tummy!  That goes for guys and girls.  You’re not on the cast of Fame, so you shouldn’t dress like it.
  2. Touch your toes.  I should see no booty!  No underwear, cracks or crevices.
  3. Stand up straight.  No highwaters, please.  And that goes for pant legs and sleeves!  Your wrist bone shouldn’t be peeking at me.
  4. Stand in front of a window.  I better not see through it.
  5. Two length tests:  the fingertip test on shorts for my daughter (she likes at/below the knee anyway so that’s actually a non issue) and for my sons, shorts MUST fall at least 1 inch below the knee.  Why?  Because you should look more like a bball player now in your bball shorts, not a bball player from the 70’s, ya dig??
  6. The most important question:  Do you like it?

Young Girl Playing By Herself

I don’t buy clothes anymore that they don’t like.  I’ll find it sitting in the closet or shoved under the bed.  I’m not the micromanaging, “I bought it, you’re gonna wear it”, wasting my own time and money arguing with you about it, trying to find where you hid it parent.  Y’all can if you want.  That’s not my style.  I like tranquility in my home.  Let your children know they have options and that you care what they like.  They should figure out what they like, discover who they are, their style and feel comfortable in their own skin. Believe me, we have a lot less arguments, grounding and other stuff than other households.  It’s because our children know they can talk to us and we know their opinion is valued.  Do they “win” all the time?  No.  But this is not a game.  We’re a family.  If one loses, we all lose.  We’re all in this together.  So yeah, my kids’ opinions matter.  They don’t rule the roost, but they matter.

scared child

Small story & I’ll let y’all go.  My dad was INFAMOUS for buying me ugly clothes.  I mean HELLA-UGLY.  Like my dad had in his mind, “Girl, I want you to scare folk off” ugly!  I’ll never forget those uglier than the Bill Cosby sweaters that he used to get me.  And corduroy pants!!! AND IT NEVER MATCHED, Y’ALL!  Jesus, I don’t know how I survived my childhood.  Oh, if that wasn’t bad enough, he also got me glasses that had the big bug lenses.  You know, the ones the Kardashians think are so hot but are definitely not?  Yeah, all I needed was a VW written on my head.  I looked just like a bug.  (I still owe my mama a talking to for not intervening in that mess!  Let me get her on the phone RIGHT NOW! )

I absolutely HATED my dad for that.  I rarely got any say on what I wore.  It was always what they wanted.  I felt like a human doll.  Well, worse.  There’s nothing like having to EXPLAIN your clothes to people.  I had to do something.  So what did that result in?  Say it with me, ladies!  CHANGING CLOTHES AT SCHOOL.  Yeah.  It was ridiculous, but that’s what I did.  It would have worked, too.  Until that day I decided to be fast and wear a mini-mini-mini-skirt.  That resulted in a phone call home & a really bad “conversation” at home.

So what am I saying?  Let your kids have some say in what they eat, wear and carry to school.  It won’t kill you to give them options you can both live with.  As a matter of fact, sit them with you when you shop online.  There may be some things they want that you don’t know about.  At all costs, maintain peace in your home, child!

thumbs up

Ok, that’s all for now.  I’ve gotta go do some other stuff.  I’ll have more good stuff for you soon.

Love ya!

Tonya

 

 

What Did He Just Call Me?! Customer Service, Part 2

PH01610J (1)That’s what I’m talking about!  I don’t know about you, but when I was growing up, my parents did not call anyone by their first name unless they were on a first name basis.  Nowadays, you can call anyone anything and it’s supposed to be cool.  Well, not in the old school!  So today, when a millennial customer service rep called me “Mrs. Joyner”, I almost passed out.  Ok, it wasn’t that dramatic, but it did stop me cold in my tracks!  It was so refreshing to hear a person in business address me in such a way.

Oddly enough, that’s how we run our business.  We call you by your last name unless you request otherwise (or you or your children have eaten at our house).  Now, don’t get me wrong.  We’ve had a few blunders (yeah, we’ve called some folks Ms. that were Mr.-shoot I can’t figure everyone’s gender out from their name!), but overall our customers give us excellent rating on how they’re spoken to.  So much so that we’ve had to turn down some customer service applicants because we’re “too patient” & “they couldn’t be that nice”.  Yeah…….we don’t want you working here unless you have a servant mentality.  Thanks, though!

So, what do you think?  Do you like it when a sales person or customer service person calls you by your first name or last name?

Tonya

 

LAUNDRY HACKS!!!

The kiddos are about to go back to school.  Yay!!!  Mine laid around like hobos & have been in the same set of clothes since June. Ok, not that bad, but Lord.  They need to get out of my HOUSE!  Wait.  School shopping=new clothes + old clothes=LAUNDRY!!!!   NOOOOOO!  Who DOESN’T hate doing laundry?!  Well, Tonya to the rescue!  Here are a few tips from Clutterbug. She has the best hacks! I’ll show you one of my own soon. It’s great for people like me who keep a drawer full of cotton tees, tanks and night shirts. (you know, stuff that needs to be accessible but never ironed). I’ll share that later. But for now, on with the show!!

Check me out next time when I share some laundry folding & storage hacks!

Tonya

Just Rest in Him-Then Move

Faith works in 2 opposing principles: rest & movement. If you are a go getter (or maybe for a laid back person, too) you can see how this could be a little frustrating. I’m a go getter. I hear, I move (my husband says I’m a runner). So sometimes resting can be challenging. But why? It’s the perception of what rest requires. For a really laid back person, stepping out on faith may sound like an exasperating task because they may be the type that likes to go with the flow & not rock the boat (don’t want change). For either personality type, it is the opposite of your nature. But it’s necessary and Biblical. So let me help.

Rest:

Physical rest is great. I love a good nap! But that’s not what we’re talking about. It’s the rest that comes from being rooted & grounded in God’s Word. It comes from building yourself in the faith by reciting, quoting, mumbling, singing, thinking about the Holy Scriptures. Pick your favorite. An easy one to recall that’s very broad. Even if it’s “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want”. You shall not want (lack) for anything. That includes health, peace, answers to situations, wisdom, direction or instruction, financial needs, or anything else you find yourself wanting. Repeating that scripture will wash your mind & spirit and wash off the dirt, dust & debris (lies of the enemy, irritants from daily earthly operations & burdens we haven’t completely submitted to Christ) that we encounter in this world. Resting will raise your head, raise your spirit and let the joy flow because your focus is on the finished work of Christ & not on yourself. This is the basis of grace. You are not under the Law (where you must perform to earn the blessings of God), but under grace (where Christ gave you perfection & right standing with God as a gift). So the rest we’re talking about is resting and knowing Christ has given you the perfect gift of a relationship with God and that He’ll never leave you nor forsake you no matter the situation or your previous or present behavior. Take the gift and rest. Do it daily & you’ll see great success.

Movement:

Go. Take. Receive. For the laid back, moving or stepping out on faith may seem like walking into spiderwebs. If moving or changing is against your nature, take heart. God has got you! For a laid back person, you may notice that when you hear God say move, you have red flags pop up. Red flags with the words “Where?”, “When?” or “How?” It may not be the issue of the instruction, but the feeling that you need more direction. The best course of action is to reflect for a moment. Reflect on what God has done for you before & use that to propel you into action. If you’re not sure how to accomplish what God has asked, ask for more clarification. If you don’t feel you’ve gotten it, just start doing what you think is best. Yeah, I said it. Make what you feel is an imperfect move for a perfect God. Before you start freaking out (wait, you won’t-you’re laid back, right?), think of it this way:

God is much bigger than you. He’s stronger than you. He had the idea of you, hand made you & planned your destiny from the beginning. So….

1. You can’t surprise Him. Jer 29:11
2. You can’t make a mess too big for Him to clean up. Jer 32:27
3. You can’t disappoint Him. Jer 31:3

Man, I need to go read Jeremiah! it’s got some good stuff in there! Ok, let me get back on task. Just move. You not moving is like trying to steer a parked car. What’s the point? You’re still NOT MOVING! So if God has been quiet, step on it! Try something! Even if (by human standards) you fail, you win! You just learned what doesn’t work and why. You made some connections with people you wouldn’t have encountered otherwise. You got some information that you can bless someone else with! That’s what you’re here for. Go forth in all the land and be His witness. Just move.

So I end this post. Even though rest & movement sound contradictory, they’re just 2 parts to what make up this Christian life. If you want to think of it another way, you must rest so you can move. Hear from His Word, then move. It’s the resting that’s prep for the movement. It’s a cycle. Reflect on it and you’ll see that it’s true. Some of the greatest victories come from these two “actions”. So if you want to move, rest. If you’ve been resting, move.

Love ya much!

Tonya

40 & Molested: My David’s Bridal Experience

If I wasn’t going for a friend. If it wasn’t her big day. Lord, if her momma wasn’t there. I would have went off. What am I talking about? Me, a 40 year old grown %%% woman got molested while shopping for a Matron of Honor dress at David’s Bridal! I’m not crazy, she really went too far. *Full disclosure-this post is not up to my usual standards. I was really upset about this situation, so please forgive me if it’s a bit raw. But I just wanted to warn you about some people. Not everyone is this disrespectful, but if someone tries to get in your bubble of personal space or permittable distance, be ready.

Let me give the back story. A friend of 10+ years asked me to be her Matron of Honor. So sweet and unexpected! So when people ask me to do things like that, I want no attention drawn to myself. I’d gone with her to get her bridal gown at this David’s Bridal location and that was a breeze, so I really (stupidly) expected the same level of professionalism and ease this time. Boy, was I mistaken…

Let me get right to it. I needed a dress with straps. Those who know me and have seen me live & in color know I’m busty. You also know that me saying I’m busty is a huge, laughable understatement. Yeah, I got enough for all y’all. I’ve had countless requests to donate “just a little bit” of mine followed by the comment that I wouldn’t even miss it.  So with all this I’m carrying, strapless wasn’t gonna happen. No, I’m not jiggling and jangling down the aisle for anyone (well, for my hubby of course, but this wasn’t the time or place for that!)

This girl (the sales lady) kept bringing me:

Halter dresses (the kind that close behind the neck and give instant side boob-Oh. GOD. No.)

Empire cut (the kind that tells your boobs where they should start and stop. No, these girls are not the boobs for that! They go where they wanna, when they wanna. You do the accommodating.  You fit them, not fit into something for you, thank you!),

Sheer top (I’m about to get a little vinegary at this point. Lady, did you not hear me say “Only bring dresses with straps”?? Obviously it’s to cover my bra that I currently was wearing that I plan to wear in the ceremony!  So no, sheer top with my bra straps showing would not be classy, but trashy!)

And any other dress she could find that didn’t fit the bill. At this point, I’m not thinking good things about her. Honestly, I’m thinking she’s a dip. That’s not nice, but that’s how I was feeling.

At this point I figure she’s not listening to me and the bride has 2 other appointments to get to in about an hour, so I just go browse by myself. I found one I liked that was the right color, length & was classy, but I wasn’t sure it would cover everything. I had tried 3 sizes of the dress and found one that was almost perfect. I’d slipped on the best fitting dress, stepped out to get the bride’s opinion and stated to the assistant that I needed a size larger to see if it would have more coverage up top (I demonstrated by gesturing with my hands on my chest where the “area of lack” was).

Then she does it.

She completely crosses the line.

She COMPLETELY crosses the FRIGGING LINE.

She touches my BOOBS.

She touches MY boobs.

SHE touches my boobs.

SHE TOUCHES MY BOOBS!!!!

I was SOOOOOOOOO mad. I mean so mad that it was lava like. So mad that until the bride reads this, she will have absolutely no idea how mad I was. I mean, y’all if we had been in the street and this little girl had tried some mess like that……………………………………………………………………………
Sorry, I needed all those dots to come back to a place where I could write again. I was ticked. So as she’s sitting there, cupping my chest, I’m trying to think of how to get this chick off me without ME going to jail. So I put my hands over hers, put them together in a praying position and as gently as I could muster, pushed them back to her. I said, “No baby, we don’t do that. You don’t touch those.” Her response? “Oh, I was just trying to see where the fabric cut off.” As she’s smiling and laughing. Not in an “I’m sorry & I’m embarrassed because I realized I just overstepped & could lose my job or get written up” way, but like it was funny because she thought I was old fashioned and that I should have been cool with her cupping my girls!

Ok, my rant is back on. WHO THE H### TOLD YOU IT WAS OK IN ANY PROFESSION TO TOUCH ANYONE’S BREASTS (OR ANY OTHER BIKINI AREA) WITHOUT PERMISSION??? I MEAN, EVEN MY OBGYN ASKS BEFORE SHE EVEN LEANS TO TOUCH A DUR-GONE THING! AND I PAY HER TO TOUCH ALL THAT STUFF!!!

No, y’all. There are no words. And I mean this when I say it. The ONLY reason she didn’t get told off was because it was all about the bride. I will still contact the manager at a later date. I need to let the lava cool to a crisp so I can even speak about it to a manager there without all this emotion. For those who think it’s no big deal, ok. You can let whoever touch your boobs and think it’s not a big deal. If that’s the life you’re about, cool. My body, my boobs and no, it’s not cool to reach out and touch someone without their consent. Shooooot. You could lose your pulse messing around like that.

So, how does this story end? I interacted with her as little as possible. I tried to give her another chance to handle the dress picking, but once again, there she went, zipping me down past the top of my undies (maybe she was curious if they matched the bra??) even after she’d seen me do all my zipping and unzipping (except where she gave me a dress with a jammed zipper-had I known I would have unjammed it so she wouldn’t need to zip me down to my drawers).

I’d had it. I pulled the seamstress to the side and asked her if she could help me find a dress that could accommodate “all this”. She got it right on the first try. Didn’t take 5 minutes for her to walk me to the area, find my size in an available color and walk back to the fitting room. That’s how long it took. And guess what??? SHE NEVER TOUCHED MY BOOBS! Even when she told me I’d have to get the straps shortened, she adjusted the BACK of the dress and never touched me once.

Maybe I’m over reacting. But I have been assisted countless times and have only had foolishness like this occur when I was buying my own wedding dress almost 20 years ago. It was even worse than this situation, though. Two perverted old ladies called themselves “adjusting” me while I was getting into the top of my gown. Um, I’ve been handling this since the day they arrived.  I got this, thanks!  Even they got told off. I wasn’t so sweet in my 20s.

Anyway, maybe I shouldn’t get so offended. When you carry around these two magnificent, hypnotic, delightful accessories, I guess you should be prepared for some crazy folk to want to “handle the merchandise”. But they are not for sale and DEFINITELY NOT for handling.  There’s only one deemed worthy to handle all this, and it took him giving me his last name for him to get to hold these cups without asking!  So don’t mess up.  You will draw back a nub. You have been warned…

Until next time, this is “My Cup Runneth Over” signing out!

This DIY Hair Gel is the Bid-Ness!!!

Do you love DIY? Do you have natural hair and need natural alternatives?

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Maybe you want to consider trying flaxseed gel.  Yeah, girl!  I have used it a few times & it’s been great.  Most of all, it does a great job of holding up against the NC humidity!  At this point, it’s shorter telling the number of days it hasn’t rained versus the ones it has.

I know some of you will want a video of how I make mine.  I haven’t made a video of my personal concoction, but I may in the future.  I want to try some different scents and oils to see what I like best.  But here’s a good tutorial.  I do suggest you add different scents by way of essential oils to preserve your gel & to give a different scent if you don’t like the smell.  It’s hard to describe.  It’s somewhere between grass and the smell of grass after it rains.

A few tips:

  • don’t over boil it or it’ll cause flakes.  You can combat that with coconut oil or olive oil depending on how badly you overdid it!
  • Don’t forget to refrigerate it!  When it goes bad, YOU WILL KNOW.
  • The price of the seeds doesn’t matter & neither does the type of water.  It only costs $3-5 for an entire HUGE container of seeds
  • Don’t throw the seeds away.  You can reuse them (especially if you don’t get your recipe right the first time) and get at least 3 uses out of those seeds, girl!
  • WRITE YOUR RECIPE DOWN.  ESPECIALLY IF YOU STRAY FROM THE ORIGINAL RECIPE!  I would highly suggest dividing the gel into 3 parts and trying a plain batch, a batch with coconut oil, a batch with olive oil, a batch with aloe vera juice or whatever you’re curious about.  I saw some people use honey.  I didn’t, so I can’t speak to that at all.  But the first time I made it, I put something in it and had THE BEST results (even better than this time) and I can’t remember what it was! DAAAAAANG IIIIIIIIIT!  So don’t do what I did, write it down.

On to the video!

Let me know your reviews!  I’m so happy with my results & I just had to show you one more time.  Can you tell how much I’m loving my hair today???

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See you again soon,

Tonya

The BEST Back to School Planner I’ve Ever Seen!

Hi guys!  I’m back with another great find.  I love At Home With Nikki.  She’s one of my favorite YouTubers.  This time she’s hit it out of the park!!  I am definitely going to try this method to organize all of our kids’ paperwork.  They’re all going to be in a different school for the first time this year, so I need all the Help I can get!  Check out the video and let me know what you think!

*Oh, there’s only one modification I’d make.  I don’t carry around school supply lists.  I take a pic of them and check them off as I get items using the screen writing function.  I can text it to my husband and oldest son to help cut down shopping time too!

Watch “BACK TO SCHOOL TIPS | Parent School Binder Organization” onYouTube