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Archive | jdc monthly

my new approach to meal planning

Meal planning.

It’s one of those dreaded tasks because 1. it takes forever and 2. how are you to know what you’ll feel like eating three weeks from now?

BUT … having a plan for dinner makes life so much easier. Every mom-friend I talk to agrees that when we do have meals planned out ahead of time, our days {and especially dinnertime} goes a million times smoother.

I am not by nature a great planner. I like flexibility and am very in the moment. Yet I have a household that requires daily nourishment and that job falls on my shoulders. So I figure I better get my act together and find a system that works because I have quite a few years ahead of me of feeding my family {three of whom are growing boys and from what I hear, they are going to eat us out of house and home}.

meal-planning-calendar

I’ve developed a plan. A meal planning plan. One that I think might work {it has for the past two weeks, at least}. Here’s how I’m doing it:

1. Collect dinner ideas on my pinterest dinner board. We have a few favorites from cookbooks that are included as well.

2. Schedule dinners for monday – thursday on the jdc | monthly dinner menu calendar {more info below}. Mondays are our busiest days, so each of those meals are either soups or slowcooker meals to make things easier. We like to eat out or get together with friends on weekends, so no meals are set in stone for those days and sunday nights are usually spent eating masterfully made suppers at Ryan’s parents’ house.

3. Shop for one week’s meals each monday, using the pinned recipes to compile a shopping list.

4. On the meal day, I’ll pull up the recipe on the ipad and cook away.

5. The ultimate goal would be to repeat the same meals once per month for each season, so we’ll probably do this same schedule into november and december, and then switch things up a bit once the new year comes around.

meal-planning-october-dinnertime-calendar

The fact that my October meals are scheduled is a very proud moment. I find that cooking is not my issue or even the shopping … it’s the pre-planning and deciding what to eat and so now having it done gives so much freedom.

If you’d like to give our meals a try, feel free to download the filled-in calendar below.

october-meal-plan

{click on the calendar to download and print}

A few notes if you do follow this menu plan:

1. find most of the recipes here.

2. we eat a lot of chicken.

3. Most of these dinners are one dish meals, but sometimes I’ll add crusty bread or a salad or sauteed green beans.

4. burrito bowls are our favorite meal – we copy Chipotle’s recipe with cilantro-lime rice, black beans, refried beans, grilled chicken, grilled peppers & onions, pico, lettuce, guacamole and sour cream. Yum. It’s on the menu twice.

5. Ryan found a whole grain rice + quinoa mix at costco and it is delish. That is what we eat on the chicken & rice days.

Hope this is helpful for my fellow struggling-meal-planners

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Want more organization tools to help make your days a bit easier {and prettier}? I’m pleased to introduce the new JDC | monthly october collection.

october-collection-antlers

This is our monthly printable papergoods service where you get an original set of practical and stylish calendars, lists, note cards and more. Here’s what’s included this month:

jdc-october-collage

 

Upon joining, you will be sent a link to access all of the pdf files. Download and print, or save them to your computer for a rainy day.

JDC | monthly members will also receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

the details:

You will receive the link to the monthly collection immediately after signing up. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the newest collection of printable files. If you decide JDC | monthly is not for you, you are free to cancel at any time.

Click the button below to receive JDC | monthly via email for $9.99 {try it for 7 days free!}.

get-organized New this month … if you are not ready to commit to a monthly membership, you can purchase just this month’s collection. The price is $12.99 and you’ll have access to the files forever.

just-this-collection

We’d love to see how you use your monthly goods. Tag a photo on any social media using #jdcmonthly so we can take a peek.

AND … please share your thoughts on meal panning. Is it a struggle in your household, too? Do you have a system that works? Any great tips?

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diy linen pinboard

Perhaps one of the easiest and most used projects I’ve ever done is covering a store-bought cork board with linen. It currently lives in my office, but it moves from room to room {sometimes holding jewelry, other times a countdown to christmas tag display}.

This is not a new idea or even one that you can’t figure out on your own, but it is one of those basics that maybe I should just remind you to do because you will find one million uses for it around your house.

supplies-needed-for-linen-pinboard

SUPPLIES //
cork board {from your local office store – any size}
linen or other medium-weight fabric of your choice {I actually used a painters drop cloth for this one}
scissors
staple gun
upholstery tacks

 

making-a-linen-pinboard

STEP ONE // remove frame from cork board

STEP TWO // cut fabric to size leaving 1-2″ overlap on each side

STEP THREE // staple one side, and then pull opposite side taught and staple to secure

STEP FOUR // repeat for other two sides

STEP FIVE // fold in corners creating a neat edge. Staple to secure

fold-corners-of-linen-pinboard

STEP SIX // continue stapling all the way around your board until fabric is tight and secure.

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confession: my cork board was super cheap and very thin so the staple gun staples went right through and stuck out the front. I ended up using a regular office stapler and it held fine.

STEP SEVEN // push in upholster tacks, first spacing them out evenly around the perimeter of your pin board.

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Now you can pin up inspiration, favorite photos, fabric and paint swatches or, of course, use it to organize.

linen-pinboard-and-jdc-monthly-september

I used this blank wall in our kitchen to tack up the pin board {with 3m command strips – the best invention ever} and added our calendar for september, a place to jot down random to-do’s before they escape my mind, and a stack of little cards that I can write notes to the kids and pop into their lunches. linen-pinboard-finished-and-styled

It’s far from the perfect command center that we could probably use, but it works in a pinch. linen-pinboard-organized-for-september

The fun printable calendar, note cards, art print, etc come from the jdc monthly september collection.

september-collection-from-the-side

JDC | Monthly is a great option if you want stylish organization that you can print on your own {choose what works best for you and your family} and lots of extras like note cards, scripture memory cards, an art print and simple diy project that is new every month.

september-collection-sample

If you’re feeling the need for some new and fun ways to get organized this fall, we’d love for you to give jdc | monthly a try!

Included each month:

* monthly calendar
* weekly calendar
* menu calendars
* chore charts
* shopping list
* grocery lists
* note cards
* scripture memory cards
* art print
* a project tutorial with printable templates

You will be sent a link to access all of the pdf files. Download and print, or save them to your computer for a rainy day.

JDC | monthly members will also receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

the details:

You will receive the link to the monthly collection immediately after signing up. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs. If you decide JDC | monthly is not for you, you are free to cancel at any time.

Click the button below to receive JDC | monthly via email for $9.99 {try it for 7 days free!}.

get-organized

As for the pin board, I hope it acts as a neutral base for all sorts of creative uses around your home.

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surviving summer with a little bit of organization

I read the best post by Jen Hatmaker the other day about how to not go crazy during the summer months with kids at home.  She’s brilliant and funny and wise and even shared a few practical tips for surviving summer and enjoying it.  She offers a “few structural ideas for us Mediocre Mamas who want this season to be fun and memorable, but who also live in the real world where not every solitary day is pinnable … These are loose structures, because for me, complicated systems are basically an invitation to fail more“.  Amen and amen.

I generally avoid structuring my time because I don’t want to feel constrained to a schedule. I like the freedom to make and change plans on a whim. But I’ll be the first to admit that I know my kids would do better/pester each other less/wander aimlessly claiming boredom less frequently if I were more like the Pinterest-moms who have summer calendars and daily schedules and a fishbowl with activities on colorful little pieces of paper that their kids can choose from when they find themselves bored.

The ironic thing is that I design an organizational system – one that I love and find cute enough to post on my refrigerator.  I begin each month motivated and excited to organize and fill in all the details and then forget about it by about day three.

No more, I say. I must embrace the structure. At least a little bit. I know, beyond know it will make my life less chaotic to have our meals planned out and chores clearly marked. I know my kids will love having a daily plan {even if it is loose so we can change things up when other fun activities arise} and it will help us all enjoy our summer just a bit more. And maybe a little less pestering? I don’t know, but it’s worth a shot.

Sorry for the novel. All I’m trying to say is that 1. I’m a bit embarrassed that I create these great organizational tools and don’t fully use them and 2. I’m going to start fully using them.

So, want to see what’s new for JDC | monthly in July?

Oh, good. Because it’s pretty cute.

JDC | monthly is a monthly subscription of printable paper goods.

As always, here’s what’s included:

* monthly calendar
* weekly calendar
* menu calendars
* chore charts
* shopping list
* grocery lists
* note cards
* scripture memory cards
* art print
* a project tutorial with printable templates

The art print would work great for a punch of summery color in the kitchen, but I like it for a child’s bedroom or playroom, too.

For the project in July, there are a bunch of different packaging labels.

homemade-labels-on-jar

Use them for labeling canning jars,

packaging up treats for a party,

or sending snacks with your kids to summer camp.

I like projects that are simple, inexpensive and doable. I guess I like an organization system to be the same. Thankfully JDC | Monthly is about as easy as it comes … simply download the pdf, print on your favorite paper and fill in the details.

I would love for you to be part of JDC | Monthly and enjoy all of these goodies! The cost is $9.99 per month and your first month is free. You are welcome to give it a try. If it’s not the right fit, you can cancel at any time.

Plus, all JDC | Monthly members receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

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Make your month organized and become a JDC | Monthly member!

yes-please

When you sign up you will be directed to the current month’s link immediately. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the project tutorial.

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Off to go fill in my calendars and assign the kids some chores. Wish me luck …

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stylish and functional paper goods + cute wrapping for giftcards

Because we all need a little motivation to keep organized and simple ways to be creative, each month I design a stylish collection of printable papergoods for JDC | monthly members.

envelopes-for-cash-and-gift-cards       scripture-and-shopping

The month of June has a subtle vintage feel with banners, silhouettes and a mix of patterns.

june-collection

Having a cohesive suite of calendars/lists/note cards helps keep life organized in a stylish way.

As always, here’s what’s included:

* monthly calendar
* weekly calendar
* menu calendars
* chore charts
* shopping list
* grocery lists
* note cards
* scripture memory cards
* art print
* a project tutorial with printable templates

You simply download the pdf, print on your favorite paper and fill in the details.

june-calendar

Summertime means slowing down, less scheduling, a more laid back day-to-day.  Even still, our calendar is essential to keep things straight in our household. While we don’t have regular school and sports and lessons, we do have vacations, swim, playdates with friends, neighborhood BBQ’s. Our days are more laid back, yes, but certainly just as full.

Our project for this month are these cute envelopes.

money-&-gift-card-envelopes

With all of the graduations, baby showers, parties this time of year {plus Father’s Day!} you may find yourself gifting cash or gift cards. While the gift itself may not be super original, you can always present it in a pretty way. There are two different templates for creating these envelopes and all six patterns. Simply fold and glue the envelope, insert the cash or gift card {who doesn’t love this gift!} and embellish. Oh, so easy and also cute.

And, as with every month, I design a special art print to fit the theme.

This time around it’s a summer list – a fun way to jot down 20 things you want to do this summer with your family. Post it somewhere visible and check them off as you make memories.

summer-list

I would love for you to be part of JDC | Monthly and enjoy all of these goodies! The cost is $9.99 per month and your first month is free. You are welcome to give it a try. If it’s not the right fit, you can cancel at any time.

Plus, all JDC | Monthly members receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

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Make your month organized and become a JDC | Monthly member!

yes-please

When you sign up you will be directed to the current month’s link immediately. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the project tutorial.

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start your month off in style and sign up today!

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sometimes the beauty is in believing

To tell you the truth, butterflies kind of creep me out.

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When my best friend was in Ecuador years ago, she sent me a photo of her at a butterfly farm absolutely covered in butterflies. She said it was amazing; I said it was way too close to a nightmare I had as a child of being covered in grasshoppers. Butterflies and grasshoppers may be nothing alike, but they fall in the same category of insect in my mind and I don’t want either of them touching me.  Which is really a shame, because butterflies are quite pretty.

And what they symbolize is even more beautiful.

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The newest collection of JDC|Monthly has just been released and it’s full of these lovely vintage butterfly graphics.

My favorite item in the collection this month is the art print.

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 I had this idea in my mind of all different butterflies sort of escaping and floating upwards all together. I’m not sure if butterflies fly like this, but it felt symbolic of being free and light and joyful. Designing the butterfly part was easy; then I was stumped on what it should read.

I prayed about this one – wanting it to be just right – and the answer came through my best friend.  She is fun and wise and is taking a big step in hosting her first women’s retreat in just a few weeks.  She texted me the other day saying she had finally decided on a theme: believe.

I knew right then that was the perfect word for the butterfly print.

believe-butterfly-art-print-wm

We all know about the life stages of a butterfly – how they transform from an ugly caterpillar and then wait for days or weeks in a cocoon before emerging as these graceful and mysterious creatures. They are often the illustration of transformation and rebirth and sometimes that can be a bit cheesy. I truly don’t mean for this print to be cheesy.

What I wonder is: do we really believe God has our best interest at heart? Even when things are hard or sad or bleak, do we truly believe that He is good? Do we believe in his promises even when our lives don’t make sense or look how we think they should? Do we believe in our value – our unique purpose – that He has put within us? Do we believe in our beauty not because we fit some cultural standard, but simply because He made us so?

Even though butterflies are a little creepy to me, I love that they represent that beauty can come out of ugliness. I hope we can see the correlation between this little creature and ourselves and somehow be encouraged to believe. Even when life looks ugly. Even when our current circumstances are not where we want to be. He doesn’t promise that our lives will be perfect, but he does give us hope and peace and freedom in the midst of it all and that usually ends up with our hearts being transformed and we become more beautiful people because of it.

I want to be free and light and graceful and the only way I can endure the hardships of life is by believing that God’s promises are true: that he is at work in my heart, refining me daily, transforming me, covering me with his grace so that I can fulfill the unique purposes he has for me.

Even though I don’t want to touch a butterfly, I sort of want to be like one.

april-jdc-monthly-collection-wm

The new collection is so pretty and brings springtime cheer to your everyday organization and seasonal decorating.

As always, here’s what’s included:

* monthly calendar
* weekly calendar
* menu calendars
* chore charts
* spring cleaning checklist
* grocery lists
* note cards
* scripture memory cards
* an art print exclusive to jdc|monthly members
* a video project tutorial {this time Audrey joined me} with templates for the project

You simply download the pdf, print on your favorite paper and fill in the details. My sister has these calendars/chore charts/menu plans all over her fridge and I love to see how she uses them!

JDC | Monthly is $9.99 per month and your first month is free. You are welcome to give it a try. If it’s not the right fit, you can cancel at any time.

Plus, all JDC | Monthly members receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

Click the button below to sign up:

APRIL-FREE-TRIAL

When you sign up you will be directed to the current month’s link immediately. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the project tutorial.

Please let me know if you have any questions … and be encouraged today that no matter where life has you, you are being made beautiful.

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keeping organized in the month of love

February is a busy month for our family. Three out of six of us have birthdays, Ryan and I celebrate our dating anniversary {I know, that’s dorky. But we dated for so long before we were married, it is almost more special than our wedding anniversary}, there’s valentine’s day, school events and a few weekend trips {we do what we can to make it through this  dreary pacific northwest winter!}.

Needless to say, organization in the month of February is a must.

Organization that is easy to use and cute to look at is a big bonus.

JDC | Monthly was created as a way to help simplify and organize life in a stylish way. This month I’ll be using every . single . item {except maybe the daily menu because its all I can do to create a dinner plan – adding in a breakfast and lunch schedule would push me over the edge}.

This February, I played with hearts and arrows. It’s pretty cute, if I do say so myself.

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The collection includes:

details

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Every month I also show how to create a simple project. This month, we’ll make this festive tassel banner:

tassel-garland

So fun to decorate for valentine’s day and birthday parties.

You will also receive a limited edition printable art print.

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And maybe my favorite this month are these sweet valentine love notes.

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Leave them around the house, slip them into your child’s lunch box or use them as gift tags.

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JDC | Monthly is an incredible value at $9.99 per month and your first month is free.

You are welcome to give it a try. If it’s not the right fit, you can cancel at any time.

Plus, all JDC | Monthly members receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

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Make your month organized and become a JDC | Monthly member!

Click the button below to sign up:

 

free-trial

 

When you sign up you will be directed to the current month’s link immediately. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the project tutorial.

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P.S. If you are already a member, your February link was emailed to you on the 22nd. If you need any help please let us know.

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a stylish way to organize your new year

Have you begun your resolution-making?

Perhaps you’d like to be more intentional with your time. Maybe you’d like to simplify life by letting the little things go. Or possibly {like me} you really want 2013 to be the year you finally tackle meal planning.

One way to start the year fresh is with JDC | Monthly – a subscription created to help simplify and organize life in a stylish way.

This January, the collection includes:

details

Because the designs are pretty to look at, you won’t mind hanging your weekly schedule front and center. You’ll be much more likely to see it everyday and, in turn, much more likely to stick to your plan.

Every month I also show how to create a simple project using printable templates. This month, we’ll make notepads:

as well as a yearly at-a-glance calendar:

Both are great for gifts!

Plus, keep track of your 2013 resolutions on this note card:

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And to top it off, you will also receive a limited edition printable art print.

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JDC | Monthly brings you all original designs that are easy to use and never overly complicated.

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JDC | Monthly is an incredible value at $9.99 per month and your first month is free.

You are welcome to give it a try. If it’s not the right fit, you can cancel at any time.

Plus, all JDC | Monthly members receive 50% off all printables in the shop.

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Start your year off in organized style and become a JDC | Monthly member!

Click the button below to sign up:

free-trial

    When you sign up you will be directed to the current month’s link immediately. Billing is done on a 30 day cycle {so if you join on the 15th, you will be billed the following month on the 15th}. On the 22nd of each month, you will receive an email with the link to download the collection of pdfs, as well as the project tutorial.

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P.S. If you are already a member, your January link was emailed to you on the 22nd. If you need any help please let us know.

continue reading |

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