FAMILY Kids/Family Parenting Simplifying

Why Your Kid Needs A Debit Card

Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids

I have to tell you about Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids that we have been using. It has been such an easy and convenient way to exchange cash with our kids! Gone are the days of making sure we always have enough cash on hand.

Greenlight card was made for children and built by parents. It is a smart debit card and has an easy-to-use app which gives parents a convenient way to stay informed on kids spending, communicate with them and load their cards.

Cash can only go so far and limits you when it comes to staying on top of what your kid is spending, when they are spending it, and where!

For younger kids, this debit card is great to control all of their spending. For older kids, like our teen girls, we use it along with their own cash for the sake of convenience and as a way to teach responsibility when it comes to money.

Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids

Why We Love Greenlight Debit Card for Kids

Here are a few reasons why we love it:

1. The Greenlight App is super intuitive and easy to use and setup.

2. The girls (especially my youngest), like having their own card! Kids feel so grown up!

3. It eliminates the pain of exchanging cash.

4. It keeps the girls from having too much cash lying around. A lost card is easy to replace. Lost cash cannot be replaced.

5. It is safe. If someone gets ahold of their card, we can immediately turn the card off from the app. They will not know the PIN in order to use it.

6. Helps us teach good spending habits in real life situations and prepares them to become financially responsible adults. It makes teaching fun!

7. Sends real-time notifications to parents and kids after a purchase.

8. Gives us gentle and flexible control of where their spending goes.

9. It gives them independence to spend their own money while we retain control over where their money is spent or how much they have to spend in certain stores or retailers.

10. It is fun and easy to communicate through the comments in the app.

Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids; parents dashboard

 

Here are a few examples from our family & how Greenlight debit card has made life so convenient:

~Our girls have earned allowance since they were young. My Todd wrote a few posts about it. We had a chart and chore system when they were younger and were paid a small allowance if they were responsible that week. Now that they are older they get an allowance just for being great and responsible teens! Todd has done a great job of making sure we have the cash to pay them each week, but it takes some thought and even trips to the bank at times. Now all he has to do is get out his phone and quickly send it to their debit card. It is as easy as sending them a text! Easier still–Greenlight card has a convenient automated allowance feature to ‘set it and forget it’ so your kids always receive their allowance on time.

~Our girls often babysit and are sometimes paid with a check.  We would have to cash their checks for them, then remember to get the money to them, hoping we have enough cash on hand. Now, all we have to do is deposit their checks with the rest of our deposits, and simply use the Greenlight app to send them the check total directly to their Greenlight debit card.

~We have 2 teen drivers. I will occasionally send them on errands or to the grocery store to pick up a few things. We used to have an exchange of cash, and often I would forget who I gave money to and for what. Sometimes I would wonder if I had paid them back at all! This was a problem when it came to doing the budget numbers, as I would need to know accurate numbers and what category in our budget those numbers came out of. Now they can bring us a receipt and I can immediately send them the money we owe them, right to their debit card, and then send myself a text as a reminder to which budget it came out of and how much.

Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids. Can specify certain stores!

~My Colsie loves a good deal and does an amazing job finding clothes at a good price. Sometimes she will be out with friends and stumbles upon a great deal, but realizes she does not have cash on her. Now she can send me a text and the Greenlight app has the option of letting me send her money that she can ONLY to spend at that specific store. I love that control. I want her to have the freedom to spend money on some good deals, but I also want to keep her from spending her whole paycheck at one store and keep her from being tempted at other stores. I can send her the exact amount that I think is reasonable that she can spend at that specific store, and the card will only allow her to spend that amount. Brilliant!

Greenlight Debit Card

~Todd is amazing at spoiling us when it comes to making sure our cars are all full of gas. I rarely have to pump my own! I know…I’m spoiled! He does it on Saturdays so faithfully. It is a great way that he shows love by serving us girls. If he was not so great at this, I could see us really using the ‘Gas’ option of the Greenlight cards, and we may still decide to use it to teach our girls the value and cost of gas. We could give them a set amount of gas that we agree to pay for each week, then they can be aware of how much they use and stay aim to stay within that gas budget. It will also get them used to getting their own gas, as they won’t be around for many more years for Dad to do it for them!

While writing this post, two more scenarios with Greenlight debit card happened:

~My Colsie is driving herself to get some tutoring after school. She needs to pay her tutor $20 and has her own cash on her, but we need to pay her back. I will use the Greenlight app to pay her back.

Greenlight, the smart debit card for kids. Can leave them comments.

~My Teagan got out of school early today and is out and about running errands with her boyfriend. I wanted to make sure she got some lunch so I sent her $15 with a note specifying what it is for. It took seconds and made her day!

Do you see what I mean by convenient? I love being able to pay my girls back the minute I think about it, instead of thinking about it later and wondering if I ever paid them back! I love treating my girls with a surprise deposit and telling them to enjoy it! I especially love when I get a real-time alert when they do spend it.

Do you want to try Greenlight card out for yourself?  Take advantage of the special 30-day trial to see if it is a good fit for your family and get a $20 deposit bonus when you sign up after the trial.

Greenlight is available for iOS and Android and costs $4.99/mo per family and includes cards for up to 5 children. It also offers zero-fee loading for parents transferring money into their Greenlight account.

Sign up for Greenlight before 10/30 and they’ll deposit a $20 bonus into your account after the 30-day free trial ends. *deposit bonus made approximately two weeks after the free trial ends.

——–

“This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group® and Greenlight, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #GreenPMG  http://my-disclosur.es/OBsstV

HEALTH Nutrition

7 Ways to Be Proactive When It Comes To Health For You and Your Family

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Counsyl. The opinions and text are all mine.

7 Ways To Be Proactive With Your Health

As a 2- time cancer survivor, I am always looking for ways to be proactive when it comes to the health of myself and my family. I try hard to stay balanced and find simple but effective ways to embrace health. Since my diagnosis 7 years ago, I have settled into a balanced approach to health that feels very good for me and my family.

I’m always trying to take small proactive steps to improve our health, without becoming overwhelmed by all the things one can do! There is a fine line between being obsessed with health which leads to fearful living, and being too relaxed and falling into ignorance. I try hard to stay in the balanced middle!

Here are a few simple tips that one can take to be proactive when it comes to health:

7 Ways To Be Proactive With Your Health

7 Ways To Be Proactive With Health:

1. Water

Let’s start super simple. You cannot get more basic than water! I rarely have anything in our home to drink besides water…okay…coffee, tea, and water. I guess I should say I rarely have anything sweet to drink in our home. It just is not necessary. Even 100% juice has a lot of natural sugar in it and can spike blood sugar because it does not have the natural fiber of the fruit in it to keep it balanced. Juice can also be hard on the teeth!

My Todd is an exception to our rule. He embraces a ton of healthy habits, but what he drinks is not one of them. He is a cola-lover, but the rest of us stay away from it. We know that Dad’s cola is Dad’s cola…especially when he is known for drinking out of the bottle! He does not keep it in the refrigerator, which is great so the rest of us are not tempted by staring at it every time we open the refrigerator.

I drink a ton of water thanks to my double-insulated, 24-ounce tumbler. It stays super cold all day and has a large straw. I find I drink WAY more water each day when it is through a large straw. I also love adding a some lemon!

2. Vitamins and Supplements

I have my girls on a multi-vitamin, vitamin D, and fish oil. I’m on the same, plus a few more. Vitamins are a great way to be proactive with your health. They supplement a healthy diet and give me peace of mind that we are all getting the nutrients we need.

I am a big Vitamin D fan, as it is great for so many things, especially immunity. My Oncologist has me on high dose vitamin D, and I get my levels checked regularly. Studies have shown most women are low in Vitamin D, so it might be a good idea to ask your doctor about getting your levels checked

Turmeric is my favorite supplement that I take daily. There are so many studies that talk about the power of this supplement, and I find that it takes care of joint pain that I have due to a cancer medication that I take daily and its side effects. It is a natural anti-inflammatory and a nice bonus is that it seems to give my skin a bit of natural color from the inside out. I will be sharing my favorite Golden Milk (aka Turmeric Tea) here soon, so if interested, subscribe to my mailing list so you won’t miss a post.

3. Balanced Living

We work very hard as a family to keep busyness to a healthy level. It is not always possible with 3 teenage girls, but even on days where everyone seems to be going every which way, Todd and I are learning to keep a slow mindset even during those busiest days. Often that looks like taking a deep breath, recognizing that most of life is not an emergency and that rushing about does not help us get anywhere any faster. I have worked hard on this one, as I am not a naturally calm person.

I do a lot of small things each day to keep stress at a minimum and a slow, balanced living mindset to a maximum. Chill music, candles, a daily walk, yoga stretching, journaling, meditation…the list goes on. On days where there is only time to do a few minutes of one or two of these things, it is still so very worth it! Anything to chisel away stress even for a short time is a great way to be proactive in embracing health, and it also is a great example to your kids, whose eyes are always watching.

4. Screening

Because of my history with cancer, I am passionate about early detection, awareness, and screening. This is National Hereditary Breast and Ovarian Cancer (HBOC) week—September 24-October 1—so it is very fitting to talk about hereditary cancer screening. 10% of the time cancer is linked to a single change in a gene, or mutation, that has been passed down from generation to generation. This is called “hereditary cancer.”

I waited until the worse time to get screened for hereditary cancer, and that was when I was diagnosed with cancer. I remember being apprehensive as we waited for results. I had my sisters and especially my 3 little lovelies on my heart and thought a lot about what it would mean for them if I tested positive. Even though I worried about the outcome, knowledge is empowering, and it did bring peace to be proactive. Testing felt like the right, most loving thing to do.

Fortunately, I did not test positive. It was such a relief to know, and I have taken much comfort in that knowledge all these years. If you want that same knowledge, you can be proactive, too! There is a DNA testing and genetic counseling company that will help you understand your DNA and inform important health decisions called Counsyl. All it takes is a small sample of saliva or blood to look at up to 36 different genes associated with an increased risk of certain cancers. Counsyl’s Reliant™ Cancer Screen is a physician-ordered test, so you can ask your OBGYN about it at your next visit.

7 Ways To Be Proactive With Your Health

5. Sleep

Our bodies love and need sleep. Sleep seems so simple but it is one of the most important things we can do for health! I do several things to make sleep a priority and prepare my body for the best of sleep. I have a cooling-gel pillow which keeps my hot flashes (another lovely cancer medication side effect) to a minimum. I take melatonin and I roll lavender oil on my temples right before bed. I set my kindle to ‘night shade’ screen if I read before bed. I also use an app called Sleep Cycle that can sense my breathing rhythms and tells me how many hours of sleep I get each night and the quality of that sleep. I try very hard to fall asleep and wake up at similar times each day. Remember…when Momma’s rested, the whole family benefits!

6. Walk

Movement is so important for health, and a simple walk can do wonders! It moves the joints, can get the heart rate up if brisk, moves lymph systems —which is very important for cancer survivors and health in general—and gets you out in nature which is always positive for health! As soon as I finish this paragraph, I’m going to take a quick break and take a walk. I’ve been enjoying walks so much lately. I’ve let go of having the perfect amount of time to get all my steps in, and just get up and walk for however long I have, whether it be for 10 minutes or 45 minutes.

I have a pair of shoes (Keen’s) that I can just slip on and go. I used to care about having a whole workout outfit on, which hindered my motivation in walking for short amounts of time, but now I just slip my shoes on with whatever I’m wearing, then get up and go! I may look ridiculous but I feel great! I love listening to podcasts (this one being my favorite right now) or jabbering away on Voxer app to my friends while I walk.

7. Know Your Numbers

There are many numbers to know! Blood pressure, cholesterol, vitamin D levels, iron levels, vitamin B 12 levels (if you are a vegan), blood sugar, and more! Be proactive in your health by knowing your numbers. Even weight is a good number to know. There are many diseases where rapid weight gain is a symptom, so know those scale numbers…just don’t obsess. If you keep up on physicals, most of these numbers will be available to you. Make sure to ask your doctor for your test results and levels. I always ask them to mail results to me so I have a paper form to refer back to and for personal records.

———

What about you?

Do you tend to get obsessed about health or ignore health?

Do you have any tips in finding the balanced middle?

What about screening? Have you been screened or thought about being screened?

ANTI-PROCRASTINATION

Anti-Procrastination Weekly Update

Anti-Procrastination Weekly Update

Weekly Update

We are feeling very settled into a fall/school routine here in the Bowman household. I now have 2 teenage drivers, and I must say I REALLY like it!

I find myself with more time on my hands and much less time in my car!

I’m feeling quite proud of my girls. They all 3 seem to be thriving this year. They have been working so hard at their studies. Our home is full of textbooks and school chrome books, and most late afternoon/evening you can find my girls studying their little hearts out at the dining room table or nested on the couch.

Gallery Wall

I watched my sisters ‘littles’ this past weekend and it sure took me back to when my girls were little. It is crazy that instead of toys being strung about our home, it is now textbooks, makeup, and car keys! I’m holding on to the moments and finding this teenage season so much fun.

 

Weekly Goals

Meal Plan — grocery list +5 meals

Dates — my Todd, my girls, one close friend

Do a Pin — Switch Your Home in a Scandi Way

Reading Progress —The Little Book of HyggeNothing To Prove; Chasing Slow; This Life I Live: One Man’s..;

 

Daily Personal Health Goals

Spiritual — journal, Scripture, pray, meditate

Move Body — walk/jog; yoga or strength training; Abs, Core & Pelvic Floor

Hydrate + Nutrients — water (80 oz a day); leafy greens & berries, vitamins, powdered greens, seeds

 

 Everyday Home Goals

{doing these things every day has changed my world!}

Make Bed

Wipe Surfaces (quick wipe bathroom sinks/counters, kitchen counters, tables)

Clutter (quick pick up and a few minutes wherever it is accumulating)

One Full Load (dishwasher & laundry–don’t stop until dishes and clothes are put away!)

Floors (quick sweep, vacuum & spot clean — if needed)

 

A Chore A Day Goals

{these daily chores have been key to keeping my house clean in minutes a day!}

– Bathrooms (all but the floor…that will come on Thursday!)

– Dusting (“work quickly, top to bottom, left to right” –Clean Mama)

– Vacuuming (just the middles will do)

Th – Floors (sweep & mop)

– You choose! (did you miss a day? No worries. Fridays are catch-up days!)

Sa – towels & sheets (nothing like fresh sheets and towels!)

Su – none (just do Everyday Home Goals listed above)

{Homekeeping Goals Inspired by Clean Mama’s Simply Clean Book}

 

Anti-Procrastination Free Printable

Anti-Procrastination Free Printable

{want this FREE printable? keep scrolling}

ChefVantage Salt & Pepper Shakers

New Likes:

Chef Vantage BEST Salt & Pepper Shakers

WHO KNEW salt and pepper shakers could make me so happy? I’ve been needing and wanting new s & p shakers for awhile now.

I surprised myself with how picky I felt about what I wanted. I wanted easy to clean, easy to fill, minimal & sleek design, and as functional as possible.

I found all of these things with Chef Vantage Salt & Pepper Shakers. I LOVE that they close all the way, and have adjustable pour with 2 hole sizes, you can clearly see which is salt and which is pepper thanks to the glass bottom.he design is super sleek and blends with any decor. They are easy to fill and wash, and can close all the way, which I love…to keep the

The design is super sleek and blends with any decor. They are easy to fill and wash and can close all the way–which I think is important–to keep the dust out and for sanitary purposes. I knew with a 5-star rating on Amazon that I would love these shakers! I sure do!

Pumpkin Spice Essential Oil Blend

Pumpkin Spice and Peppermint Mocha Blend

I’ve read reviews on these new oil blends and they are excellent. I cannot wait for mine to come in the mail! They are 20% off right now, so it is the perfect time to order. I think these would be so great for fall and all the way into the holidays!
The reviews say that the blends smell much more and have the warm scent of the holidays, and are so much better than the typical synthetic smells of many holiday scented items.
If you are interested I’d love for you to use my affiliate link –> Pumpkin Spice & Mocha Peppermint Blend

Recipes I’m Making This Week:

I follow a loose guide every week, with these 9 themes as a guide. Watch my Instagram Stories to see some of these recipes. I often capture my cooking process!

Breakfast for Dinner | Whole Wheat Buttermilk Pancakes

Taco/Mexican Meal |  Homemade Enchilada Sauce (again, so good!)

Pasta Night | Tortellini in Tomato Pasta Sauce–sweetened with carrots!

Meatless | Tortellini in Tomato Pasta Sauce–sweetened with carrots!

Organic Chicken Meal | Chicken Enchiladas –with homemade taco seasoning

Grass Fed Beef Meal | Honey Garlic Meatballs

Wild-Caught Fish Meal | 10 Minute Maple Crusted Salmon

Instant Pot Meal | Instant Pot Sweet Potato Chicken Curry

Slow Cooker Meal | Creamy Potato Soup

Soup | French Lentil Soup

Snacks | Monkey Smoothie

Essential Oils Recipe | “Almost Fall” Blend — 2 drops orange 1 drop cinnamon bark 1 drop vanilla

 

Instant Pot Weekly Staples

Crockpot Bone Broth (made it in Instant Pot this time)

Instant Pot Yogurt  | Instant Pot Steel Cut Oats | Instant Pot Quinoa 

Instant Pot Hard Boiled Eggs | Instant Pot Black Beans

 


WHAT ABOUT YOU?

What are you wanting to get done this week?

What recipes are you planning on making?

Are you on Pinterest? Share a favorite pin you want to accomplish.

 

AP-print

HOME Organizing Simplifying

How to Declutter When Overwhelmed

How to Declutter When Overwhelmed

I’ve gathered some tips and tricks to help you know how to declutter when overwhelmed.

If you read my post last week called Facing the Clutter in that One Dreaded Room, you know I’ve been busy decluttering around here, and honestly was quite overwhelmed when facing my own clutter. I talked about how we cleared out the study (that had become a storage room) and put all clutter in one area upstairs.

I purposefully transferred all clutter to an area where I could not close a door or drawer and ignore it. It is in our upstairs landing area, a place that I must walk through to get to my bedroom. I can’t stand seeing it every day, so I have been very motivated to chip away at the clutter.

In the process of dealing with my own clutter, have gathered some tips and tricks to help you declutter when you are feeling overwhelmed, too.

How to Declutter When Overwhelmed

 

~Just start. There is no system or checklist that is going to do the work for you. You have to just start.

 

~Don’t be an overthinker. If you think too much, you will be paralyzed and get nothing done. This is when procrastination happens. Stop analyzing and just get busy!

 

~Clear out a small space, then keep plugging away at the rest. Think progress, not perfection.

 

~Have bins/boxes and black yard waste bags all ready to grab and use.

 

~Use black yard waste bags. You can’t see inside the bags so you won’t second guess or retrieve, and neither will your kids! I have one kid that is notorious for searching through my donate bags.

 

~Use these 3 things:

  1. Keep Box or Bin
  2. Donate Bag
  3. Trash Bag

*Notice I did not include a ‘Sell’ box. This has tripped me up too many times. I end up keeping clutter thinking I’m going to sell it, which just creates more work and does not help me embrace simplicity. No more ‘sell’ box for me. It all goes to the ‘donate’ box.

Cube Timer- Great for decluttering!

{My FAVORITE timer. Click here to buy on Amazon}

~Set timer 15, 30 or 60 minutes. You choose. When the timer goes off, go make yourself a cup of tea. Then repeat or give it another go the next day. Pace yourself.

 

~ Find trash first. Scan the area and get rid of obvious trash. When trash bag gets full, take out the trash and keep going. Only use one trash bag for trash at a time. 

 

~Start with easy decisions–the easiest being gather obvious trash. Make harder decisions, like what projects to keep and finish or what sentimental items to donate, for later. Set them aside and move on to something else.

 

~Self-talk is important. When you feel overwhelmed, change your thoughts. A ‘can-do’ attitude makes a difference!

“I can do this.” 

“I don’t have to do it all now.”

“A little bit every day will get the job done.”

“I will be amazed at what I can achieve in a short time”

“One session done quickly will add up to a finished room in time.”

“My worst room might just become my best!”

These type of thoughts will lift your spirits and help you get the job done.

 

~Those items that are hard to let go? A helpful way to think about them is, “Am I holding onto someone else’s blessing?” Just because something has value does not mean you need to hold onto it. It could bless someone else.

 

~Use the 20/20 rule. This is a great tactic I’ve read about. If you can replace it for under $20 within 20 minutes, don’t keep it just because “WHAT IF I need it in the future?” Many things that are hard to part with can be found at your local thrift store, less than 20 minutes away and less than $20. So let it go, because if you truly need it in the future (you most likely won’t) you can get it in 20/$20!

 

~Take the ‘donate’ bag right to the car when full, and replace with a new bag. Doing this with both donate bags and trash bags will keep your area clear and you will see progress quicker, which will reward and motivate you. This tip is key for me! It is so motivating to see the area I am working on getting more and more clear as I take out the bags. It is so rewarding!

 

~Go through the ‘keep’ box as it fills up. If you find duplicate items or if one item replaces another, get it right to the donate bag. Put items you want to keep into ‘like with like’ piles.

 

~Ask a friend to help. Have them be the one to put things in ‘like with like’ piles, while you move quickly and take the items from the piles to their home.

 

~Make it fun. Play music or listen to a favorite podcast.

 

~Be ok with stopping but make sure you pick it back up the following day. A little each day and you will get it done!

 


How about you?

Do you have a dreaded room that needs decluttered and that is overwhelming?

Do this tips resonate with you? If so which one?

Please share your favorite decluttering tips!

ANTI-PROCRASTINATION

Anti-Procrastination Tuesday

Anti-Procrastination Weekly Update

Weekly Update

 

If you read my post titled ‘Facing the Clutter In That One Dreaded Room,’ you know, thanks to my daughter, I’ve been a busy bee decluttering! I often get bit by the decluttering bug in the Fall. I feel like I’m preparing to nest with cooler weather on the way. I cannot nestle in and relax when I have clutter looking at me every time I try to walk into my bedroom!

I’ve also been busy creating some really exciting things, but I just can’t tell you about them yet! I’m hoping I can reveal my secret by the holiday season…maybe end of October? Until then, my lips are sealed, but I’m just giddy. That’s all I’m going to say about that.

Also, raise your hand if you have been putting off appointments that benefit your health. My hand is raised! I am due for teeth cleaning, (done!), I need to reschedule an Oncology appointment, oh…and that lovely yearly exam we ladies just love!

How about you? Are you due? Don’t forget to add a mammogram if you are due and take a minute this week to do a self-check.

 

Weekly Goals

Meal Plan — grocery list +5 meals

Dates — my Todd, my girls, one close friend

Do a Pin — Quinoa Corn Cakes

Continue Reading

Top