Thursday, November 29, 2012

Family Christmas Ideas....

I am a visual person, one of my biggest sources of fuel and ideas is Pinterest.  I CAN'T GET ENOUGH!  It seriously can feel like an addiction at times!  And I know people who think that about me, that I'm an addict;)  Go ahead, you will agree too!  {My Pinterest Boards}

I'm sharing a few images that really spoke to me....  
{1} I have many of these cylinder vases that I have used for events {by annette's creation's}.  And battery operated lights....and lots of ornaments!  It looks simple, cheap {free!}, and full of sparkle!  
{2} wreathes, I can't get enough wreath ideas....!  There are so many creative ideas and really loved the simplicity of these, and if I look hard enough around my house I can probably create yet another cheap {free!} Christmas craft! 
{3}  A tree skirt, I don't have one.  I have been so picky about these, everything I see at the store is either ridiculously priced or just not what I, when I saw this!  I thought, OMG, I could find a round table cloth that I love at Target or Homegoods and just add a few hems! Budget friendly, simple and exactly what I want! 
{4} Natural home-fragrance, CHECK!  I did this last night!  I saved the leftover citrus from our juice machine and added fresh cranberries I had on hand for juice, a cinnamon stick, vanilla extract and ginger peel from my soup!  It smells cheery!  Another cheap {free!} one;) 
{side I am writing this, I am realizing I did not have any intention of having a completely free list or even anywhere close to free....but my wish list is looking pretty good right now.......!!!!!}
{5 & 6} I am obsessed with staging and setting a table!  My fascination really took over when I worked at Pier One in college btw!  People probably walk through my house and think I'm crazy for having lots of accessories with 2 rambunctious boys running around?!?!?!  I question myself all the time!  But I love it too much and I wouldn't be completely devastated if something happened to it!  I would just replace it and hope that no one got hurt!  I just love looking at it too much! In these settings I really am attracted to the pinks and reds, gold and turquoise, white and mint.  My house is already full of these colors and they will look great for the holidays!  
{7} I just love this!  I will figure out a reason why I should string pom-poms or marshmallows from my ceiling.....!!!!! 
{8} This really came from my son JB, when we were discussing the lay of the land, you know where should we put the tree?  Where should we move this table?  Where do we want people to sit at our family party?!  Then a light bulb clicked in his head and he thought that we should put food that looked like Christmas trees in the middle of the table, and then my light bulb went on and remembered this photo from pinterest....OMG, I HAVE TO DO THIS!!!!  It sounds cute, simple enough, some what healthy, we could do a veggie tree, an apple tree....., and it's very festive!
4. babble
6. sorry I don't have the original for this, its labeled Martha Stewart table scape in flickr...

This list is more about having a festive holiday with my kids!  I'm one of those moms who would have probably been a pretty good pre-school teacher, I love this stage, they are so creative and they love exploring. It is such a fun age, I just LOVE it. Spotted these ideas on Pinterest that can really be done without much hassle...!  {1} a fun photo shoot! {2} a fun place setting! {3} cardboard Christmas house! {4} colorful ice! {5} hand-made winter bird feeder! {6} paper gingerbread men! {7} a shower curtain floor mat we can turn into Christmasville!  {8} hand-made card! {9} ice cream cone Christmas tree forest! {10} gingerbread men play dough! {11} gingerbread house (ours will not look like this! LOL) {12} home-made gift giving........!!!!!
5. babble
11. zinke

Just want to recognize where the ideas come from!  Want to give credit where credit is due.
{These photos on Pinterest inspired me enough to want to know more, and when I looked further I did find some pretty great and interesting stories out there...}

I encourage you to make a mood board too, they are fun....!!!  See if you can use some things you already have in a different but special way........and maybe you'll add something extra special that you didn't think you could have or maybe even do this holiday season.....!

Cheers ~ annette

Immunity Super Soup....

The crisp cool air, the bulky sweaters and thick scarves, hot coffee and of course, hot soup!  Winter is here and I hear all around me of people getting that almost inevitable cold or flu.  Yuck, I hate getting sick, and I am going to try super hard to avoid this....!  {Good luck to me!} I could eat soup everyday, I enjoy making home-made soup so why not indulge in this everyday?!?!?!  Soup can be very healthy especially if you prepare it yourself, you can control what goes in, and let me tell you, all it takes it a whole lotta love and wholesome goodness to make good soup...   

I LOVE Dr. Oz, how could you not!  He is adorable, and knowledgeable!  I caught this great episode, as a working mom I don't get to watch regularly, and it was about your immune system and doing healthy natural things to keep your body fighting those nasty germs!   Chef Ming Tsai, also adorable, made this soup on the show and talked about all the great ingredients and how they help your body fight off the germs and claimed he hasn't been sick in a really long time!  I bought into it and had to make this soup, I love soup and spicy soup is the BOMB!  Yummy! 

A quote from Ming that I also fell in love with, "Food is the best medicine...." Amen.
Here is the link to Dr. Oz but I will share with you here as well, I added chopped fresh parsley because I love it! 

1 jalapeno (with seeds)
1 tbs grape seed oil (I didn't have this so I used coconut oil)
1 tbs minced ginger
1 tbs minced garlic (I love garlic and added more!)
2 bunches of scallions
1 lb of shitakes
black pepper
put it all in a pot and cook it down for 2-3 minutes, moving it around with a spoon.

2 qts of low sodium chicken stock or chicken broth (best choice is stock...)
2 lemons juiced
2 tbs brewed soy sauce
2 carrots shredded
1 block of silken tofu (I tried both silken and firm, I preferred the silken!)
black pepper
Add lemon zest and scallions to garnish! Enjoy! {I couldn't wait, and left this out!}

Do you have any cold remedies or ways you keep your family healthy during the fall/winter months when everyone else is sick spreading their germs EVERYWHERE!?  Some other natural cold remedies we will be trying this year….thanks to the Dr. Oz show…
-Bilberry extract to help fight a cold
-garlic foot rub: minced garlic + olive oil, another fighter
-cough syrup: 1 tbs apple cider vinegar, 1 tbs honey, 1/4 tsp ground ginger, 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
-Congestion: pineapple
-Sore throat: colloidal silver spray (kills bacteria)
-Headache: Capsaicin spray, 2 sprays in each nostril
And of course good old home-made chicken noodle soup can help those days you or your family members are under the weather.....!  And its great for the soul.  Why not send some soup to a neighbor or an elderly person you know as an act of kindness this winter..........
Wishing you a healthy winter,

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Holiday Essentials and Organization....

I am currently geared up to tackle the tasks with grace, health and organization... I hope to add a few little luxuries to this list to help keep me lifted while tackling the holidays, maybe the occasional latte, a perfect cozy scarf, slippers!

#1 my iPhone

#2 stress relief in a bottle!
I tried this for the first time this summer and love it, rescue, by bach, rescue remedy natural stress relief and I think this could really help while tackling the holidays!

#3 emergen-C packets
so that I can feel the good!  these give me energy and keep my immune system in check...  I take at least 2 packs a day, some days, if I am starting to feel something trying to attack my immune system and throw one more in the mix for a better defense....!
#4 my 1GB usb storage drive by scandisk, so that I am never without my most important files;)  honestly, I never know when I will need them!  What if I need my favorite photos or lists while I am at my mom's or sisters....?!

#5 my favorite lip stick, marykay, color shell and my favorite lip shine burt's bees zesty red, I can survive without lots of make up, but I need foundation and lipstick to not feel naked while running around town doing holiday errands! 

#6 alba pineapple quench lip balm, the dry air is already taking a toll on my lips and skin, seriously, can not live without moisturizer this winter I hate the feeling of cracked lips and skin!  And the tropical smell......mmmmm, it can take me on a quick mental vacation....

#7 ear phones: can't get enough enya lately... so calming and I can get lost in the sounds while wrapping and crafting and blogging!

#8 hair tie, another must have at all times, the dry weather takes a toll on my pin straight hair and when I am running around I may need to throw it back to not fuss with the frizzies!  ...gotta love cold Michigan weather...!

#9 my binder for the current agenda and list! {gosh, I really need to convert to the iPhone, but there is something about paper....I - LOVE - PAPER!}

#10 portable keyboard for the iPhone. {I really, really, really want an iPad, but it is not a current priority...}  I do love the wireless keyboard, if I feel like typing something on pages or notes or an email it really helps my fingers and thumbs, although, my eyes are given the true challenge of being strained while looking at the tiny screen!

#11 my big bag, vera bradley style, it is called the miller bag, it is my favorite bag ever!  I consider myself a bit of a bag lady, I live out of bags!  This is great for traveling as well as running around town it can hold EVERYTHING!  Pockets and the way it opens, you can see it all!  So when I am out shopping my daily binder goes, my coupon binder goes, and anything else that needs to come along, like diapers and wipes;)

 #12 my coupon binder for coupons, sales flyer's, deals, extra cash bonuses, coupons, gift cards anything to help me save as many bucks as I can this Christmas!

There you have it, my holiday essentials....simple, helpful, handy and healthy to keep me going!


Monday, November 26, 2012

Daily Reminder....

Simply intentional with love!
I took one of my favorite photos I snapped with my iPhone of my boys sharing an
act of endearment while wrestling in the grass at the park and made it into a daily reminder quote for myself. 
I captured this moment of love and happiness with my oldest son just starring into my eyes.  Everything I do, I do it for them they are my first priority, I even put them before myself. 
The truth is though that for me to be the best I can be for them I need to focus energy onto myself.  I need to keep up with them so I need to be healthy.  I need to stay positive and balanced even if the world seems like it can come crashing down at any time....
I put this list together and have posted it in a few convenient locations in our home, daily reminders of what I need to do for myself and my family everyday to keep us happy, healthy and balanced.
Find peace and joy in the everyday,

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year....

Christmas.  I have some pretty wonderful memories that revolve around Christmas,
it is the biggest celebration of the year for us by far!
It starts after Thanksgiving and doesn't end until the tree comes down...  There is so much happiness, and giving, and LOVE!

{Photo: our super excited boys camped out in front of the fireplace!} 
Before the holidays began this year I felt this overwhelming sense of panic...  I wanted nothing to do with them. The idea of getting ready and prepared to join in some great festivities was really starting to bog me down.  I was even getting sad about the thought of everything that goes with it, I didn't want the flu, and I didn't want the stress~panic feeling of OMG, its too late to figure out the perfect gift, .....I won't have time for everything....ahhhhhhhhhh!

But then, I had a complete revelation of myself, I got over my fears of getting sick, not having enough time, the to-do's, the list upon list, and go-go-go mentality until its over.  I trully LOVE everything about the holidays, and I wasn't going to let the negatives take me down and keep me from enjoying this wonderful end to a pretty tough but beautiful year!   I enjoy hosting and giving and I really do want to embrace this season even if my life is already stressful!  There is so much joy that can come with the holidays.  ....SO I pulled up the big girl pants a couple days after Thanksgiving, the official kick-off to the holiday season, and really got into the spirit of Christmas....and there is no stopping me now!  I have a plan!

After spending endless hours and days looking at and using my idea boards {on pinterest} to see how others handle the details, I developed a plan.  This weekend I started the foundation of what is to come  this holiday season because WE LOVE IT!!!  The Christmas tree is standing, the garland is hung, the furniture has shifted and the plans have begun!!!  The boys could hardly control themselves they were filled with so much joyful excitement!

It's time to stage the house for the holidays, make my lists and check them twice, be thankful for my life everyday and appreciate what I have around me, host a party, try new recipes and share them, see relatives I haven't seen in a really long time, start a BIG tradition and make the entire month about Christmas, blog as much as I can while I am busy so that I develop a really great habit from the CRAZIEST month of the whole entire year!!!!!

Cheers to a scuccessful, happy, healthy holiday season,

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Let's give this blog a kick-start.....

I am as ready as I will ever be to Kick Start this blog!  
Trust me, I will be learning along the way!
All right, my goal is to live simply, live by intention and live a life full of love. 
Simply intentional with love!  Oooh, I LOVE the sound of that!

Well a couple weeks ago, I stayed home from my day job. It wasnt intentional however; I was stricken with illness that was brought on by treating myself badly  Lets just say I had a rough night with the porcelain God...!  
This had me thinking about why I was feeling this way, what made me feel this way, who made me feel this way.  Conclusion:  I realized that I was not sick nor did I have food poisoning, I did not have the chills, but still I felt awful and my body rejected something 
hmmm, why? Ahh-haa moment, because I was wasting too much effort and time feeling sorry for myself this past week{end}, I over indulged in any food item I pleased, I didnt cook or prepare real family meals, we were on the go-go-go, I drank alcohol, ate cake, hot dogs and cheese, m&ms, lemon bars{light bulb} duhhh, I figured it out

I completely gave up on myself; I treated my body terribly and did nothing good for my soul either.   I was just not giving my life my all.  I was actually kind of giving up... 

My excuse was that my man was M.I.A. due to work obligations for a total of two weeks in October.   The boys and I missed him dearly, he is really good at keeping us on track, and he wasn't there for that support.  Our home was completely out of sync and I spent zero time really caring about myself or for myself 

All of those self-pity moments led me to overeating, eating unnecessary sugar, not drinking enough H2O,  and gave me days of grumpiness, irritability, sluggishness, and a general feeling of just not feeling well  Seriously GIRLFRIEND What is your deal? {me, talking to me!} "LIFE IS A ROLLER COASTER! Get over it and keep going!"
I remember being called a duck by a colleague, calm at the surface but paddling like hell underneath.  That pretty much sums me up.  I tend to show a lot of self-control at the surface, I'm usually pretty coo,l calm, and collected and tend to hide the stress.  Most people wouldnt even know how crazy I was paddling under the surface! So, being a duck, I am not sure if it is a good thing or a bad thing...? 

Here are some of my ways to get back on track. {I need to always have a goal in mind.t}
{Photo: My favorite juice, kale, mint, pears + blueberries}

Step one Hubby back on the juice machine! 
Seriously, we love our fresh morning green juice that he lovingly makes for us every morning, it is pure, energizing, rejuvenating, healthy, brings everyone happiness {most days}, we all get a ton of fruit and veggie servings first thing, and it has aided in weight loss!  All key factors to a healthy lifestyle, its simply intentional with love!  
{always be~e putting wholesome goodness in the body throughout the dayno snacking unless it is wholesome and good, limit eating out and bring food from home that is home-made wholesome and good!}

{Photo: My hubby making fresh healthy juice.}

Step two  Fill my jug with crystal clear goodness!
Fill that 64 oz jug every morning and drink it throughout the day, just need to keep it close by and remember to quench my thirst once in a while!  
{aim to try and add lemon to a cup of warm water in the morning to kick start the engines for digestion!}

{photo: coffee, berries, notes}

Step threeFollow the yellow list, its a great map to where I am going
One of my favorite paper pads is the yellow page steno book, its a perfect size 6 x 9, two columns, and yellow, so I can easily spot my list...!  I am just really bad at keeping only one note pad going at a time, I end up scribbling on sheet after sheet of paper!  And they are even in countless places.  I just need to Follow + Keep a system.  And K.I.S.S. it. {keep it simple stupid!}
{always be~e keeping up on our organization system, this is something I struggle with, I havent quite found my system… oh, and use the yellow iPhone notepad, it has come in handy many times!!!}

Step four Play music, exercise and breathe.
These go hand and hand sometimes, when I turn that music on after my morning coffeewatch out, dance party USA in-my-living room!  I look like Im nuts, if someone were to happen to show up at my door during this routine, they would wonder why I am not skinnier than I am, that's for sure!  I move, I shake, I lift my kids, I spin, I jump!  Just need to turn it into a workout routine, and I'd be set!  Another great thing I have tried and absolutely lovemeditation. I really didn't understand what it was until I tried it, its refreshing, relaxing, rejuvenating, motivating, healing, I think it can really be anything you want it to be!  
{set a goal to turn on the music more often during dinner time!  Get moving girlfriend! Also aim to spend time with my friend walking the stairs at my day job and don't forget to add some yoga to our life! Take time to meditate.}

Step five  Stop worrying about a clean house and get a project going even if it takes days to complete.
I love being creative, I hate clutter, and its a battle I am constantly dealing with  I love being able to be a hostess at any moment so my home needs to appear clean and tidy at all times, just in case However, these days, I have two busy bee monsters ruling the hive!  So visitors are really at a minimum these days, so why not focus on making our hive cozy and fresh and use all of the creative energy I feel and have a hive under a little construction.  Were a family and were constantly evolving and growing.  There are so many things I can do to make us more organized and efficient, comfy and creative! 
{aim to start a DIY home improvement project every chance I get!} 

Step six  Eat healthy, meal plan.
I have found when I plan our meals out, consciously make a decision, then we succeed at eating healthy and on a budget.  JUST DO IT!  It feels really, really good when this is working the way I need it to.  

Cheers to living simply intentional with love~ annette

Thursday, September 27, 2012

About this blog...

The secret of life: A good cup of coffee…

{My family}
{The Bizzy Bee Keeper}
Hi, I'm Annette Rioux and it's fabulous to have you here at My Bizzy Bee Hive!  Life is something we cherish around here; in our home {hive} we love celebrating life, making memories, being inspired and trying to find new ways to improve ourselves.   I have learned that life doesn’t have to be perfect to be great.  I’m a 30 something hard working {bizzy} Michigan girl, interior designer, wife and mother, small business owner {annette’s creation’s}, health foodie, and I am doing my best to be organized enough to keep up with life so that I can juggle it all!

One of the many reasons why I started this blog is because I really miss having my social time with my girlfriends. Like myself, most of my friends are also bizzy having ba-bee’s, raising their family, buzzing around town with their kiddos and taking care of careers, yep, there is not much room there to socialize!  One of my absolute most favorite things in life is sharing a cup of coffee with friends.  I have cherished the long talks we’ve shared over coffee; today these social hours are almost nonexistent!  Would you have a cup of coffee with me?!  Coffee to me is about taking the time to be social, it’s energizing, its warm and comforting, its casual and relaxing …its friendship; sometimes coffee is just me-time, reading-time and work-time. Either way…I LOVE it!  

{Our Hive}
Life definitely seems to move much faster today, I am married to my best friend {who doesn’t drink coffee…}, and we have 2 beautiful, super inspiring boys.  I am always buzzing around here, usually with a cup of coffee! We are currently focused on simplifying our bizzy life, building a home business {annette’s creation’s}, working on home projects and trying to hold onto money so that we don’t feel financially stressed anymore.  In short, we just want to live a healthy, happy, successful, family life in our lovely Michigan home where we are raising our children to be whatever it is they want to be in this bizzy world!  {with a little help and guidance from us of course!}  It brings us so much joy to watch them grow here…  We have learned to appreciate home ownership, we have learned it is important to adapt as well as be accepting of what we have, we plan to do what we can with what we have where we are. 

{The Bizz-ness}
I have always had a passion for having fun and I love celebrations, I believe life should be fun!  No matter how tough life can get, we all deserve to celebrate and be celebrated. {….I wish every day could feel like Christmas day….}  You will find lots of inspiration here to celebrate your life too!  I have started a home business {annette’s creation’s} that specializes in life’s celebration’s, we can design the perfect invitation, custom floral and d├ęcor, or provide you with a perfect party in a box that can be shipped anywhere so that you can have a home-made party without having to buzz around town and the internet to pull it all together!  Party planning can consume a lot of precious time if you want it to be unique and special.  I have done a lot of the homework already and I can help make your life easier, please check me out! {}
{Life Happens}
Let me tell you!  I have three boys in my life that will do anything for me?!  Seriously, what could I possibly not be happy about?!  My life is AWESOME.  There is so much to be grateful for....but times are tough, and children are demanding, and husbands can only do so much, {as well as wives, although I am infamous for wanting to do it ALL} parents are aging, and work doesn’t stop so that you can manage everything else on your plate….  Ahhhh, life can be depressing.  There are times I am consumed by negative thoughts.  These thoughts can take away every ounce of energy I have….and when I fall weak to them; I begin to lose focus on all the great things in my life.  Ahhhh, sometimes it just feels like a vicious circle!    Time doesn’t stand still, ever, I need to be organized, prepared, and ready for anything!  I believe every single person that has ever said, “Enjoy the time with them now, they will be grown up before you know it….” This thought honestly scares the bejeebers out of me!  And my boys are only 2 and 4!

{Inspired to Be{e}}
I am always searching and SEARCHING trying to find the answer to just about everything that happens in my life, I certainly don’t have it all figured out!  Talking it out with my kids, well it can work, sometimes, but I far more appreciate getting opinions and ideas from grown-ups!   Otherwise the only thing I hear from them is my own inner voice, and I still don’t have an answer!  Whether it’s a book that I’m trying to read, some advice from friends and family, or spending hours on the Internet, I will never give up trying to Be{e} a better person today than I was yesterday.
I hope you join me for a cup of coffee or two…or more!  This is my social hour and I love talking about being a mom, but that’s not all that I care to talk about! I get inspired sometimes by the littlest of things and I love talking about home, design, color, style, food, health, celebrating life, projects, business, budgeting and just the day-day happenings.  I am making healthy lifestyle changes every day. I am a tip junkie, if it can make life easier I’m in, I’ll try just about anything once!  At the moment I am deeply in love with a modern vintage style.  And I am completely obsessed with planning, being organized and having a routine!  Routine.....I wish I was good at this…  I would rather be prepared for any situation…and live life flying by the seat of my pants.  My ultimate goal is to Be{e} real, wholesome, simple, compassionate, humble, creative, loving, imperfect, worthy, grateful, successful, authentic, healthy, active and organized!

Cheers to that!  ~annette

{“No more just working, drinkin’ + dreamin’…it’s time to just do it”}

I love sketching, my mind works in a very graphic way, I am an interior designer and graduated from LTU {Lawrence Technological University}, when I plan this is usually how it looks!  These are examples of planning for my blog, as well as a party plan!  It really is an amazing tool, sketching by hand.  I can pretty much see and share what I see before it is even real! With my background being that I do commercial design in an architecture firm, I use my computer as a tool!  I will be sharing lots of my many “plans“ with you!