MVP, Author at Simply Complicated Mom - Page 2 of 46



8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day

World Kindness Day is today November 13th and with bullying, at an all-time high, I thought I would post activities for our kids to help them recognize World Kindness Day.  I personally find a day to remind ourselves to be kind of silly. Shouldn’t we be kind to one another every day? But maybe there is some necessity to the day with all of the divisiveness and hatred out there these days, especially on social media.  So here are 8 quick and easy (the SCMom Way) kindness activities to help kids recognize World Kindness Day…

Blessing Bags

If you are “thrifty” like me you keep all of those tiny bottles of bathroom goodies when you travel. And they quickly accumulate under your sink, well Blessing Bags are the answer.  Once a year I have my kiddos go thru and bundle bags of shampoo, soap, toothpaste, razors, the bathroom basics.  Then we add a snack and water and a couple of bucks to each bag and we drop off to homeless people.  I prefer to drop the bags off with my kids than take to a shelter because I like my kids to speak and meet people.  It helps them to realize that the homeless are people too and we are no different than they are.  And before anyone fires off hate mail, no I do not do this alone nor I do not put my kids in any danger. This is a great life experience for your nuggets.

8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day
Putting together our Blessing Bags


Teach your kids to give back to the community at a young age.  Instill this valuable lesson early on and it will be a habit that they will carry on into their adult lives.  Some volunteer ideas for kids can be done at a local library by restacking books on a Saturday for a few hours, cleaning cages at a local animal rescue or serving food at a homeless shelter.  8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day

Give Thanks

This is a quick, easy and free way for your little to show gratitude, especially useful nearing Thanksgiving.  Have your kiddo create a handmade thank you card for a service person in the military, a fireman/woman/ person on the police force, or anyone that serves our community.  When they are done with their creation take them to present it to the recipient!

8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day


Sibling Rivalry

If your house is anything like mine there is constant bickering with the kiddos…” mom she lost my shirt,” …”mom, he’s in my room”…” mom, she killed my fish!” (true story) So to quell that for about five minutes have your kiddos write the lunch box notes the night before unbeknownst to all the others.  The next day at lunch they will all get little surprise notes from each other in their lunch boxes!  FYI a word of advice though, you might want to supervise the note writing just in case you catch one of the authors in a particularly bad mood writing hate notes (another true story.)

“An Apple a Day!”

We all know we wouldn’t trade a day in the life of the teachers who deal with our kids every day.  So why wait for Christmas or Teacher Appreciation Day to show them the love? Shower them with appreciation old school with a granny smith and a cute handwritten thank you note by your kiddo “counting the ways” they love their class.  It will make their day of dealing with kids eating buggars and sassing so worth it! 8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day


Piggy Bank Challenge

This one is a hard one for the littles, but is a good lesson.  Decide on a portion of their piggy bank to donate to a local charity.   I also suggest taking them to donate it themselves to make the lesson more tangible to them.  If they do not have a piggy bank or rather an allowance maybe think about donating that week’s allowance and doing the same, donating to a charity of their choice and taking them with you to “make the drop.”

Make Housecalls

I’m guilty of this myself, underestimating the loneliness of my single older relatives and not going to visit enough.  I know this juju will come back around to me someday, unfortunately.  Grab your kiddo and go visit the senior in your life, if you don’t have one then stop by a senior center with your favorite nail polish to paint a senior’s nails or easy card game like Uno and spend some time there.  They will welcome your visit and enjoy the conversation.  (PS Check with the senior center first regarding visits) 8 Kids Activities for World Kindness Day

Color Kindness

Here is a Free coloring page I put together for you to print out and have your kiddo color and give to whomever their little heart’s desire for World Kindness Day or any other day of the year!! FREE Downloadable #worldkindnessday Coloring page

Do you have any cool kindness activities for kids? I’d love to hear about them in comments, shoot me your thoughts!

For more SCMom Click Here…


Thrifty Thursday- DIY Bench Redo

It’s Thrifty Thursday and it’s part II of my DIY bench redo!  It’s also pushing noon and I’m killing myself to put this post together.  Please don’t misunderstand,  the DIY part of the project actually was easy peasy, as promised and I will show you in a bit.  But the actual sitting down to write about it is a whole other story.  Eh-such is the life of a busy mom, wife, and budding entrepreneur pushing mid 40’s sigh… (double sigh to that last part)

To catch anyone up, that may have missed the original Thrifty Thursday post regarding this DIY Bench Redo here ya go…

THrifty Thursday diy bench

I had wanted to take a break from thrift shopping for a few weeks and tackle some other way to save money and also bring you something different to read about.  Mission accomplished!  I found in my closet a gross, water-damaged old bench that I saw a glimmer of potential in.

The only supplies I needed were;

my painting shoes, (lesson learned from previous projects)
my handy dandy staple gun
spray paint
fabric- on clearance at Hobby Lobby
…and Tadah a lazy crafters perfect DIY Bench redo for under $30 saving me heaps of money! Here are the easy-peasy instructions and pics!

Thrifty Thursday DIY BENCH


Check it out!…I ended up liking this bench so much it’s been promoted to my bedroom, Do you like it? I also plan on making throw pillows with the extra fabric for my bed all for a cool $30…double score!

diy bench redoHave you done any easy craft or DIY projects lately that would make Martha twitch? I would love to hear about them in comments!

For more Thrifty Thursday Click HERE>>>
10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have
10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Women over 40 are no longer fighting aging but now embracing this new stage in our lives.  The 40’s once known as “dreaded” now more commonly praised as the fabulous 40’s. And as we enter our 40’s we start noticing three things about ourselves; Our growing intolerance for bullshit, the need for a more comfortable yet stylish footwear and the ever-changing needs of our maturing skin.

But what makes our 40’s different from our mother’s counterpart, is we are now realizing that aging is natural.  Women want to look the best we can at the age that we are. For example, you don’t want to look like an “overdone” 49-year old.  Yes, we all know her, the poor woman who has been convinced to do “just one more procedure.”  No,  we want people to look at us and say, “she looks amazing at 49.”

We are also figuring out that prevention is the key to aging fabulously. This being said, prevention is not always an easy feat after years of abuse and hormonal imbalances we struggle with now.  Our 40’s complexion can one day be compared to a teen fighting acne, and the next we are slathering on moisturizer because our it feels like the Sahara void of all moisture. All the while, resisting the urge to dip into your kids’ college funds for lotions and potions promising to reverse the years of damage done from baby oil and iodine in the 80’s halting the formation of crows feet, jowls and other ghastly things with adjectives, that I’m sure a man monikered, because who else would be so utterly negative and brash to use such ridiculous words like …jowls, furrows, and crows feet,

Because of this widespread problem so many of us women in our 40’s face, not knowing which lotions and potions, do-dads, and gadgets to purchase, I a self-proclaimed “facial preservationist” who vows to age fabulously have come up with 10 simple and affordable beauty items every woman over 40 must own!

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

CC Cream

Throw those powder foundations from your 30’s away. The powder will set in your fine lines and creases and age your beautiful 40 something face. Find a good CC or creme foundation. CC Creams are known for their multitasking abilities. They contain an SPF and serum. I personally find them magical and I don’t know what I ever did without them. Most day’s I wear my CC Cream and nothing else because it just evens my complexion out. My personal favorite for years has been “It Cosmetics” CC Cream. When I wear it people stop me in the store to compliment my skin.

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Creme Blush

Creme Blush is versatile. I prefer a chubby creme stick to a pot because I love a good multitasker. When blush is in a stick form you can use as a touch of color to your lip also. After you apply your cc, just dab a few dots on your apples and blend with a sponge blender. You will immediately glow dahling…The Nars Multiple Stick is the bee’s knees!  It doubles as a lip, cheek wherever you need a little rosie pick-me up!

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Shimmer Pencil

I learned this trick from youtube tutorial of course. And what did we ever do before tutorials?! My entire high school experience would have been different, enough said. Dab a dot on your tear duct (not in) and on your inner lid for an immediate awake look, you can thank YouTube and me later 😉  I am using the Becca Highlighting pencil, but It has been discontinued, such is life.  I found a budget-friendly alternative coming in at only $14 from Sephora! 


A Funny story my 17-year-old daughter tried to teach me how to “strobe” with her highlighter stick. Honey sit down, mama has been highlighting for thirty plus years. I dab a few dots on my cheekbones, tip of the nose, cupid’s bow, chin and brow bones for an immediate glow all year around. My all-time favorite highlighter is Clinique’s Chubby Stick 

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Black Mascara

YES, black all the time, and the blacker the better. *Mascara hack- dust your lashes with setting powder first and the mascara will set thicker. If you leave the house with just one thing let it be mascara always.  A budget-friendly fav of mine is always Loreal’s Lash Paradise, at around $6 it never disappoints even the pickiest beauty blogger.  And a luxury cult favorite for years is DiorShow,  many have come since, but I always seem to go back to it.

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Rose Lip Color

“I used to have lips” I caught my self-staring in the mirror uttering the other day. Where do they go as you get older? They must have run off with the single socks from the dryer…So invest in a good long wearing and moisturizing rose that is one tone darker than your own lip. I use and love the Neutrogena Moisturizing Lip pencils they last forever and don’t dry out your pout!

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have
Brow Pencil/Mascara

Brows frame our face and can make or break you. If they are too heavy that’s all you see on someone and if they are too light, well you end up looking like powder. And as we get older the brows to go to the same place that the lips go, I think. They thin out and never come back. If you don’t want to invest in micro-blading or if your chicken like me, just go pick up a good brown brow mascara with fibers to thicken and do not over pluck, those babies will not grow back one day trust me. A good pocket-friendly option is the Loreal Brow Stylist it thickens without being too cakey, I wear this daily!
10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have


Moisturize, Moisturize, Moisturize! If you remember one thing from me and all of my “wannabe wisdom” let that be it, ladies! Even if you have bipolar skin like me with an oily, breakout prone T-zone you still want to moisturize, just maybe with a lighter alternative like a serum or oil-free moisturizer.  This Olay Regenerist Face Serum contains collagen for plumping action and at only $16 is a steal!

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have
Hydrating Face Masks

Facemasks are great once a week thirst quencher for your skin. I make it a routine so I don’t forget, every Sunday I can be found making “Big Sunday Breakfast” with a sheet mask on. My preference is a facemask that contains hydrogel, it’s similar to a silicone-like feeling and helps the mask contents absorb that much better.  Afterward, my skin feels like a babies tush. I often find Lux closeout brand facemasks at Marshalls and TJMaxx for $2-3 versus $7-8.  Here is a budget-friendly containing a double bonus hydraulic acid, stem cells, PLUS  hydrogel!
10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

Acids, Peels, Retinoids OH MY!

Were baby oil, Iodine, and sun your best friend in the 80’s and 90’s like me? Don’t fret, there are so many great OTC products out there these days, You can reverse a lot of the minor sun damage and discolorations at home with glycolic and lactic acids as well as retinoids. They work by promoting cell turnover and the creation of new collagen aka new skin turnover. But tread lightly, you can do damage if not careful and cause scarring. Consult a dermatologist and always wear an SPF when using any sort of peels or acids in your skin routine. Start gently with an OTC containing glycolic for a gentle slow peel at first like these Bright Reveal peel pads by Loreal.

10 Beauty Items Women over 40 Must Have

No more damage!

Hats and spf! To avoid any further damage and skin discoloration always use an SPF in your routine. Pick a facial SPF over 30. Never leave home without it, and not only on your face but your neck shoulders, decollete, and hands. Our face isn’t the only part of us that has to age fabulously!  Further damage prevention is so important, we are trying to correct our bad deeds from our silly reckless days, rebuild collagen, so it is especially important we don’t add any further work for our bodies or our dermatologists to deal with.  Also, very if not the most important get checked yearly for skin cancer my sister friends, in 2018 there will be almost 200,000 new cases of skin cancer diagnosed in the United States alone.  Here is your’s truly this year on vaca in my favorite hat.  I still do love the sun but I am smarter about it!

10 Beauty Items Every Woman over 40 Must Have

Aging Fabulously doesn’t have to be painful or expensive mama’s!  Do you have any favorite products or tips?  I would love to hear from you! Drop me a note in comments!


4 Fun & Easy Halloween Treats!

If you have been following my blog you know I don’t do any crafts or recipes that involve googling an ingredient, glitter or requiring 15 or more minutes of my patience.  I’m a total believer in working smarter not harder. We have enough on our overfilled plates mamas. But at the same time, I don’t judge, If you want to spend your time hand beading your kids Halloween costume you do you boo, I’ll buy mine at Marshalls and we will survive.

So when the Holiday’s come around I spend about 5 minutes googling easy crafts.  And this year, was no exception.  I found four projects that looked super easy, only required light grocery shopping and wouldn’t destroy my kitchen…did I mention I’m a little of a neat freak? Here ya’ go all four projects from the last week in one place!

Four fun and easy Halloween projects

Spooky Spiders, Ghostly Graveyards, Witch’s Hats, and Witch’s Broomsticks all only required at most five ingredients and ten minutes of my time.  Each project my eight years old mostly did with minor instruction from me, including the mixing of food coloring.  And each fun and easy Halloween treat was exactly that fun and easy with my little one begging the question “mom when are we doing the next one?”  ….to which the standard “later,” was replied.

“Ghostly Graveyards”

The first one we attempted was Ghostly Graveyards only needing four ingredients;
chocolate pudding cups, Oreo cookies, Reese’s ghosts (or peeps ghosts) and pumpkins for embellishments) and here are the directions.  This project could not have been easier and more delish, check out the full post HERE…

“Spooky Spiders”

Spooky spiders were second on our list of fun and easy Halloween treats.  This was my daughter’s favorite treat, I think because of the whimsical edible ending.  They truly ended up looking like spiders!  This fun and easy treat only needed 5 ingredients and took about ten minutes to complete, of course, longer if you were mass producing them for a class or two!  Check out the full instructions HERE>….PS. They eyeballs would have been less messy if a grown up were dotting the eyes, but the o.c.d had to let this one go.

Simple and Fun Halloween Treat

“Witch’s Hats & Broomsticks”

Witch’s Hats & Broomsticks were last on the list to attempt but not least.  They came out too cute for words, especially the hats.  We improvised and made these our own by adding a dollop of green icing, after realizing they needed something to pep them up a bit, don’t you agree?   Plus, the sweet of the icing and the salty of the pretzel made these oh so good to eat!  These would definitely be a crowd pleaser at a sweet Halloween class party or craft for kiddos to make with minimal mess (just premix the icing, or pull a Mari and just buy it pre-colored next time 😉  Check out the full Post HERE…

Cute & Easy Halloween Treat

10-minute Graveyards, Broomsticks, and Spiders were the extent of my Halloween craftiness. Now onto my lazy Thanksgiving crafts!  And I’m ok with that! Work smarter not harder.   You want the kiddos to remember the happy mamma, not the exhausted one!

For more Simply Easy Click HERE…

If you have an easy Turkey or upcoming Holiday Craft to recommend or share I’d love to hear about it in comments!



Cute & Easy Halloween Treats

Here are my last two easy Halloween treats, “Witch’s Hat and Broomsticks.”  If you missed the first two, “Ghostly Graveyards & Spooky Spiders,” you can catch up here…

Simple and Fun Halloween Treat Fun and Easy Halloween Treat







Today is my final Easy Halloween treat tutorial “Witch’s Hats and Broomsticks”  and I use that words loosely because all three of these spooky treats are so simple my 8-year-old lil’ witch assistant pretty much did them on her own, with little direction from me. Needless to say, there has been a considerable increase in chocolate intake and the need for spandex this week 😉

For your witch’s hats and broomsticks, you need a total of only 5 ingredients, woohoo!  And the Oreos you already have from the Spooky Spiders, double score!

Here is your super easy Halloween treat list…

Easy Halloween Treat


After gathering your ingredients, enlist the help of a little witch.  They make the best helpers, as long as they don’t eat more than assist like mine!

Grab your Oreos and separate them.  I have seen other witches hats with the cookie intact, I thought it looked a bit bulky.  But you do you boo! (no pun intended 😉
Next, I added a few drops of green food coloring and made 1/8 cup of green icing to adhere the kiss to the hat.
Finally, plop your chocolate kiss on top and voila …Witch’s Hats

Easy Halloween Treat


Now onto our final and easiest of all of the Halloween treats, the accessory to our witch’s hats… “Witches Broomsticks.”

Grab your ingredients to this super cute and the easiest of all of the Halloween treats…Pretzel Sticks, Leftover icing from your hats and mini peanut butter cups
Poke holes in the tops of the cups, I figured this out after losing a few sticks to breakage (lesson learned)
Next, dab your pretzel stick in your green icing.  This is optional, I think the color added a little something to the broomsticks.
And finally, stick that pretzel into your mini peanut butter cup and tadah…”Witches Broomsticks!

You could not have a cuter and easier Halloween Treat except for the first two we did last week, “ghostly graveyards and Spooky Spiders.”

Easy Halloween Treat



For more DIY the Simply way, Under 5 ingredients and takes less than 10 minutes click HERE>>>

If you have any cute Halloween ideas I would love to hear about them in comments below! 


Thrifty Thursday- DIY Bench “Re-Do” Part I

I decided to take a different approach to ThriftyThursday this time around.  Partly because I needed a break from shopping to shop, which I find to be a bad habit and also not wanting to hear “It” from my husband about shopping  again (ugh.)  So for this and next weeks Thrifty Thursday, I am going to be saving tons of money by doing a DIY project and refurbishing an old yucky bench that came with my house when we moved in.

Why not just go out and buy a new bench Mari?  Well, I’m glad you asked!  Because I am so tight I will squeeze a quarter until the eagle screams, hence thrifty Thursday.  But I will still go out and spend money on lotions and potions and all sorts of botox and what not for aging fabulously, makes no sense in your head right?


Well, let me explain my reasoning. My face is my forever face. I have to make it last for the next 50 years or so.  This bench and all of the stuff in this house, pish posh.  It’s just stuff,  and it will be out of style in a few years anyway.   I will want to change it again.   So why spend the benjamins on high dollar stuff?  Doesn’t that put it in perspective for you? Or I sound like a lunatic, you decide.  While you’re pondering that, I’ll get back to the bench…

The Story of the Ugly Bench

Bless this ugly bench’s heart.  It came with the house, this poor sad blue plaid bench.  Left like an orphan in the night.  It found a home in my closet, soon becoming a catch-all.  Adding to the “character” of the bench it even has water damage from a roof leak we had.  But me being the Meiser that I am,  I kept telling myself I would eventually “re-do” it.  This week Thrifty Thursday is finally forcing my hand.

Being on a mission to do this project as inexpensive as possible I stop the hobby lobby fabric department.  I probably could have found fabric less expensive at a thrift store but sometimes the effort isn’t worth the money saved.  Fabric, especially specialty fabric like what I needed is hard to find, and I wasn’t up to chasing it all over town.

When I arrived at Hobby Lobby I made a bee-line for the clearance department.   I was pleasantly surprised to find a nice selection of home use fabric on clearance and enough of it for 60% off! * Double bonus- it was in a print I could live with.*  So I snatched it up, buying two yards of the clearance fabric.  I purchased extra to make a couple of throw pillows later.Thrifty Thursday

For this project I will need;

Material- Purchased 2 yards but will only use one $12
Spray Paint – Already Have – Haven’t decided which color
Batting? – Not Sure Yet, I have to get into it to see the condition

The fabric was originally $24 a yard I purchased for $12, If I don’t have to buy more batting that’s zero cost and if I use spray paint I already have, that’s a total cost of $24 for a bench.  I originally wanted to buy for $150 here…
Thrifty Thursday

I’m going to have to deconstruct the bench, assess the batting damage and decide whether or not to replace the grommets.  I tend to be on the crafter’s lazy side, so that’s probably going to be nixed.  I plan on doing all of this and posting for next week’s Thrifty Thursday.  My question to my 5 readers is …

What color for the legs…Metallic, Black, Brown? Help!   Let me know your thoughts in comments!


For more thrifty the Simply Complicated Way Click HERE…

Simple & Fun Halloween Treat

If you’re a fan of Simply you know that I don’t do any craft that takes more than 5 minutes or requires glitter.  I also won’t attempt a recipe that mentions the word truffles or has an ingredient that I have to google.  So when the holiday’s roll around, I find myself on the hunt for simple and fun treats and crafts to do with my little.

While googling one day I happened across “Ghostly Graveyards” first.  Here is the link in case you missed the post last week. “Ghostly Graveyards” could not have been any easier.  This DIY was perfect for my little girl’s eight-year-old hands to assemble and very quickly consume (I may have helped with that part)
Fun and Easy Halloween Treat

Next, while perusing  I came across these spooky spiders. These adorable edible insects are the perfect treat, simple and easy.  Involving only five store-bought ingredients and only requiring about 10 minutes of my limited patience. I hope you enjoy this DIY as much as we did.  Be on the lookout for the next and last Halloween treat next week!
Simply & Fun Halloween TreatSimple and Fun Halloween Treatsimple and fun halloween treat

After gathering your whopping four ingredients and a helper, get to work eating, I mean assembling your spiders 😉 Spooky Spiders were especially fun for my little.  She loved putting the legs into the oreo.  The original recipe didn’t call for additional icing, that’s why it’s not in the ingredient pic above.  But the top of the oreo didn’t quite fit right and we were afraid it wouldn’t stick.  So we grabbed a tube from the pantry and stuck one dot over the licorice and it ensured the tops would hold tight!

This DIY is so easy there really aren’t any “steps,” to follow.  You just kind of wing it like we did.  First, separate the Oreos and Licorice. Then place the licorice across the Oreos and secure with a dollop of icing. Place the top of the cookie back on and dab some icing and M&M’s for eyes, voila…Spooky Spiders!

Simple and Fun Halloween Treat

Here is our completed project, what do you think?  Do you have any simple and fun Halloween treat ideas? I would love to hear your ideas in comments! Simple and Fun Halloween Treat


Check out more DIY Simply Complicated Style HERE>…


Ninja & Shark Kitchen Appliances up to 60% Off Today!

If you’re like me and been in the market for a new coffee maker or new kitchen do dad today is the day folks! (Hint Hint Hubby!) Amazon has Shark and Ninja Small Appliances up to 60% off Check them out HERE.. 

or click on the pics here…


Check out more Simply Complicated Deals Here

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