Happy weekend, everyone! Thanks for heading this way today to scope out who this week’s featured blogger is. I’m happy as could be this morning because some of our very best friends are waking up with us! Do you remember our buddies, the Landers? They’re here! In fact, Meg and I are probably drinking coffee on the back porch right now while the kids jump on the trampoline in pajamas. Ahh. <3
I am REALLY (!) excited about today’s feature because Courtney dives into some topics that other featured bloggers have shared much about. I hope you find her responses to my questions as engaging and interesting as I do. Her blog is really pretty (as well as entertaining!), so please hop over to it once you leave here. 🙂
Have a beautiful weekend! See ya Monday! xo
Q: Hi Courtney! In three sentences or less, tell us a little bit about who you are. ☺
A: Hi, Erica! Thank you so much for having me!
Raising two wild and wonderful little boys with my husband is both my greatest calling in life and favorite adventure. I believe home is wherever we’re together, and right now that happens to be within the sliding doors of our new minivan (we’re currently in the middle of PCSing from Germany to Fort Lewis)! Writing and connecting with like-minded mamas and military spouses are my passions, and I’m thankful for the opportunity to share my heart in this space!
Q: When did you start your blog, and what kinds of topics do you share?
A: I’ve been blogging in some capacity since 2008, but my focus changed significantly in 2012 while my husband was on a year-long deployment. Connecting with other bloggers during this time helped me realize I wasn’t alone in my daily struggles. Now, my mission is to encourage and connect with fellow moms and military spouses. I write about the ups and downs of military life, motherhood, homeschooling, living overseas and family travels.
Q: Your site design is beautiful and so user-friendly! Did you set it up this way from the very beginning, or did you do a redesign and invest in your site after some time initially blogging?
A: Thank you, Erica! That means a lot to me. I tried on different themes for a few years until I found one that fit just right. I like being able to customize the design myself so I can tweak it to get exactly what I want. I’ve learned my goals will change from season to season, and I need a flexibile theme that will grow with me. I ended up purchasing my current design from Bluchic, and the investment was well worth it!
Q: I’d love to hear about your time in Germany! Did you do much traveling while living there? What did you miss about the states? What will you miss about Germany?
A: My husband and I share a passion for travel, and we definitely tried to take advantage of the opportunity to see as much of Europe as we could while we were there. Being from Texas, it amazed us that we could drive a few hours in any direction and add a stamp to our passports! We ended up visiting nine countries during my husband’s three year tour with our two boys in tow.
I missed my family and friends the most. Our boys grew so much during our time overseas, and celebrating holidays and birthdays without grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins was particularly tough.
I will miss so many things about Germany! The beautiful scenery, the kind people, the food, our church, our house, the close-knit military community we were a part of… we built a life there, and it has been hard to say goodbye. I definitely left a piece of my heart in Deutschland.
Q: Were there any challenges to parenting in Germany? Any specific positives?
A: Moving our children to a foreign country certainly came with an element of fear and anxiety that I had to work through. Our firstborn was 4 and our youngest was only 20 months old when we arrived. Everything from grocery shopping to going to the playground to driving on the Autobahn became a challenge for me as I learned to overcome the language barrier and adjust to different cultural standards. Over time, I learned that Germany is a beautiful, family friendly place. Living there is a bit like going back in time. The locals carry out their daily lives at a slower pace. Most businesses close their doors in the early evenings and all day on Sundays. It naturally carved out time more time for us to spend together as a family.
Q: Your homeschooling post was a phenomenal read recently. Wow. Would you mind briefly telling us about what the shift was like transitioning to a homeschool family?
A: Thank you, Erica! It was a challenge, that’s for sure! The hardest part was changing the way I look at education altogether. In the beginning, I stressed myself out over trying to do everything “right” (choosing the “right” curriculum, building the “right” structure and routine for our days, etc.). Since then, I’ve learned that homeschooling is a way of life. We’re learning as we sit down to do schoolwork together, but we’re also soaking up knowledge and experiences as we do chores around the house, visit our friends, serve at church and travel to new places (just to name a few examples!). I came to the realization that God has us in His hands. My job is to do the best I can for my children with what I’ve been given and trust Him with His plans for them.
Q: If you had a whole day to yourself, how would you spend it?
A: As long as this is a fantasy :-)… I’d ask my fairy godmother to whisk me off to Paris! I would spend the day geeking out at the Louvre. Afterward, I’d treat myself to a cup of coffee and a few hours of browsing books at Shakespeare and Co. But… I’d wish to be home just in time for dinner with my crew and bedtime stories. Those are my favorite moments of the day.
Q: Where should new readers start on your site?
Q: Where can we connect with you on social media?
I would love to connect! You can find me on…
And just for fun…
- Rather go out to breakfast or dinner?
Dinner! I love having cozy breakfasts at home with my family around our kitchen table.
- West or east coast?
I will say west, since we’re en route to Washington State as I type this! I can’t wait to explore the PNW!
- Flavored coffee or black?
Black! Or a latte with soy or almond milk.
- Dogs or cats?
Even though I adore both, I’ll say dogs. We have a 12-year-old mix that just survived an 11 hour flight from Germany. She is such a trooper!
Thank you so much, Courtney!
Is this your first time to Whimsical September? Welcome!
Hello! I’m Erica, the blogger behind Whimsical September. I created the “The Saturday Sit-Down” series in January 2017 as a way to give back to the blogging community and link readers with new bloggers whom they may share similar interests with. Click here to discover more bloggers that have been featured on “The Saturday Sit-Down”. I promise you – there’s some GREAT ones!
Want to be featured in this series?
I have openings starting in the summer of 2018 and would love to feature you! Please email me at WHIMSICALSEPTEMBER@YAHOO.COM and I’ll be in touch with you. It’s totally free and a fun way to bring new sets of eyes to your blog. PS: Bloggers with any-sized following are welcome to be featured!
Whimsical September Email List
Hi! I’m Erica, and I absolutely adore sharing my life on this website with you! I come here almost daily to blab about all of the things related to being a regular wife and mother is today’s ever-evolving society. I share about our new home, what’s on our kitchen table, what we’re hanging in our closets, where we’re traveling to next, my crazy 5 a.m. work outs, how I make time for girlfriends, our faith, and much more. We always have a lot of balls in the air and somewhat thrive on the chaos. I believe in the power of story-telling as a form of inspiration and entertainment, so I’m here to do both! I was born and raised in north Alabama and recently re-planted roots here again after my husband transitioned out of the Army (he is now in the Reserve and it’s going so well!) I’m a super proud mom to two little girls (ages 4 and 2) who seem to be the stars of the show around here (for good reason – they’re pretty great!) I’m so glad you found me and are here reading! I hope we can get to know each other here on the blog as well as Facebook and/or Instagram. xoxo