Kelly Hicks » Design & Photography

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PRINTABLE HOLIDAY TAGS

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Ever since I designed this branding, I’ve been experimenting with watercolors. They are super fun to play with because it forces you to embrace that imperfect, unfinished look. My sister and I hosted a Christmas party last week and I designed these holiday tags as a giveaway. I thought I’d share with all of you as a downloadable print!

Are you all ready for Christmas?? I still have some gifts to get but I feel a little ahead of the curve this year, phew! Can’t wait to wrap gifts this year and put these to good use. They are ready to be printed on a regular letter size (8.5 x 11) paper. Enjoy!

Download here!

HolidayTags

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Very cute tags! Thanks for sharing!

1 YEAR ON THE DAVE RAMSEY PLAN

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The other day my sisters and I were talking about the top 3 things we each talk about. They said mine were:

  1. My boys (obvi)
  2. Design
  3. Dave Ramsey

That last one is embarrassing but totally true. For those of you thinking, “Who??” click here and here. After taking Financial Peace University at our church and Dustin even leading some FPU small groups, we decided it was time to actually implement the plan. As in make a budget and STICK to it. As in pay off debt. As in follow a plan. So last November, D and I sat down and did our first zero-based budget on paper. We cashed out some of our paycheck for the envelope system and started paying cash for groceries, restaurants, and clothing. We stopped using our credit cards. We got focused on our debt snowball which looked a little like this:

Credit Cards
Car payment
Dustin’s school loans
Medical Bills

I’m thrilled to say we have been following the Dave Ramsey plan for a year now and have paid off

$24,688.10

We are not done yet but we have paid off everything except the medical bills. So now the debt snowball looks more like this:

Credit Cards
Car payment
Dustin’s school loans
Medical Bills

Yay! Setting up a budget in the past totally sucked for me because I could never stick to it. The main problem was that I wasn’t being realistic with how much I actually needed in each category. I also never thought about things like car repairs, dentist bills, pharmacy costs, etc. so when it was time to pay those it would totally ruin my budget. D was awesome because he made me look at all those things I never planned for and budget for them each month. I found that budgeting doesn’t mean you are confined to never spending money, it just means you have a PLAN for your money. You know where it’s going instead of wondering where it went. I don’t feel guilty anymore if I spend money since we already budgeted for it. How freeing!

Now twice a month, D and I sit down and do the budget together. We still use our cash envelopes and document every other purchase. We never really fought about money before but living on a plan we both have agreed to has helped us set goals and dream together. We love the Dave Ramsey plan not just because it works but because it’s based on what the Bible says about money. We are both excited for financial freedom but right now we are focused on getting to that next baby step.

I know this topic has nothing to do with design, art, or decor but I just wanted to share our experience and encourage others that they can do it too! And if any of you have experience with this, I want to hear your stories!

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We are wrapping up our FPU small group on Sunday night. We somehow didn’t plan our budget at the beginning of this month and I have felt so lost with our money. We get paid again this Friday and I can’t wait to budget everything out for the rest of the month. Dave talked about giving and giving in our last class and I cannot wait to get to that point! Sounds so exciting!

We love the Dave Ramsey plan! We went through FPU our first year of marriage and it has made a huge difference. We paid of all my husband’s school loans and started saving towards retirement (which, let’s be real, we never would have started doing otherwise). Having a budget keeps us from fighting about money! I think that is the number one benefit. We are on the same page about where money is going and make better choices. Glad to find another fan!

Sarah

I love hearing stories of people succeeding with Dave’s plan! My husband and I did the plan 8 or 9 years ago, and it changed out lives. We’ve been able to buy 2 cars outright (it feels wonderful to say “Nothing!” when people ask what your car payment is), and having our emergency plan in place means we don’t have to panic as quickly since my husband lost his job. Congratulations, and keep up the good work!

Tammy

I am attending the class for the 2nd time around…this time with my husband :) and also my sisters and their husbands. I LOVE dave ramsey’s baby steps I just wish I was better about actually following them :/ I’m going to keep trying to plug away at it though! congratulations to you guys for making it this far!!

It’s inspiring to read that you’ve paid off that much debt. I wouldn’t say this many other places, but we’re at about double that right now, and we’ve been “following” Dave Ramsey without actually STICKING to it. We buckled down and talked just a few nights ago about *really* doing the envelope system and sticking to it because we owe it to ourselves, our kids. I hope next year at this time I can say we’ve paid off that much, too! :-) Way to go!

kellyhicks

You guys!! I love hearing your stories and experience with this!

Becca – Isn’t it funny when you can’t wait to budget again? Haha I totally get it!

Bethany – Awesome job!! And I totally agree on the marriage front – being on the same page is priceless!

Sarah – Thank you and wow good for you guys! I can’t wait to pay for a car with ONLY cash :)

Tammy – How fun to make it a family affair!

Laura – You can do it! I stay inspired by listening to the radio program and budgeting for some fun things along the way too. Persevere and before you know it, a year will have gone by, like it did for us! Good luck :)

LIAM’S NEWBORN PHOTOS

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Wow Liam looks so little here! Yet still fat and chubby :). For the life of me, I can’t remember how old he was here, I know less than 2 weeks but don’t remember his exact age. Ugh bad Mom! Those first weeks are such a blur which makes having this documented mean so much to me. They grow up so quickly. We absolutely love these that Brianna did for us in our home. I already got some printed and hung up!

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My first thought was “ahhh, so beautiful” quickly followed by, “wait, why isn’t his hair sticking straight up?”

Such a beautiful family, and the most warming and cozy pictures! :-)

Olivia

Gorgeous family!!!!

Very Handsome…both of your son..

Awsome Pict…Nice

Berbagi artikel yang menyenangkan, I am from Indonesia. Nice Blog

These pictures are dreamy! Beautiful family.

These are just LOVELY!!! Congratulations on the newest addition! He’s adorable! ;-)

DEAR LIAM // 4 MONTHS

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Oh Liam. This babe is the sweetest little guy ever. I remember when I was pregnant with him I thought, can I really love another child as much as I love Jack? Yes! Yes I can. It’s funny because one of Jack’s nicknames was Snuggle Bear but he wasn’t snuggly. haha This guy, HE’S the snuggler. He buries his face in your neck, loves being held, and rocked.

We still have a sleep problem, as in he wants to sleep in my bed right next to me ALL night. I have this inner dilemma about it every night. Logically I know he should be sleeping in his own bed and he does to start out the night but eventually he ends up in my bed. I’m too exhausted to attempt to put him back. When I do attempt it, he cries and wakes up shortly after I fall back asleep. It’s very frustrating so I have resorted to keeping him in my bed. I have made several half attempts to let him cry it out but it takes denying all my Mommy instincts not to pick him up. And it doesn’t help he shares a wall with Jack. I recently read an article that crying it out kills brain cells? Oh brother. Didn’t you know everything you read on the internet is true? (insert sarcastic face). But either way, I can’t decide how I feel about it or what to do. I know these baby days are short but I also know I’m setting habits. Eh!

It doesn’t matter how frustrating the night is, as soon as it’s morning, he’s all smiles. He is oh so happy in the morning and I love it. As you can tell in these pictures, he found his feet this past month! His nicknames include Mr. Smiles, Honey Bear, and Love Chunk. (I may have to erase that sentence before he goes off to school haha!) He is interacting with Jack more, laughing and flapping his arms at him and Jack loves holding him, kissing him, and tackling him EEK. I hope these two are best buds.

DearLiam4Months

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Jennifer

Sounds ALOT like my second. My first was a champion sleeper, so I didn’t ever have to do the cry it out thing. My second is just like yours, only sleeps when he is curled up next to me. For us it was a long road, but it will get better. I periodically sent his older brother to papa’s house and we did a night of crying it out (or we let older brother stay up a little longer, or sleep with us for a night). We did one night of intense let him scream (which broke my heart every time) and then within the next few days he would get it and sleep most of the night (maybe one wake up here and there). BUT every tooth, and every developmental milestone … he would revert right back :) Im sad to say he is a year and a half and we just moved into a new home … and I’m right back to grabbing him to keep him from waking up the neighborhood and just bringing him in bed out of desperation.

It’s a tough place to be. I don’t like to do the cry thing, but I also know caving is creating a bad habit. Im stuck right there will you! But your right, its temporary … and one day soon he won’t need me at night anymore and I will wonder why I ever complained … so I am trying to just make the most of it and find new ways to make sure he feels safe and loved without giving in all the time!

He looks so smiley! Our little boy is seven months now and was very similar with regards sleeping. He would go down in his room and then when he woke I would pull him in with us because I was too exhausted to do anything else. For the last month though I have been going in if he wakes and giving him his dummy- or feeding if it seems like the right time (only doing this once a night now he’s older) and things are improving. He is actually sharing a room with his sister but when he has cried a bit it hasn’t bothered her often . Last night he actually woke once at 1 when I fed him on one side and he went right back off, it has just been a case of changing what he expects a bit. Sometimes if he’s really upset I rock him and sing our bedtime songs before putting him down again to reinforce the sleeping aspect!! It is so hard when you’re tired and I am sure you’ll find what works for you guys. Like you said they grow fast and it’s not so bad to enjoy these little moments even when they can be challenging too.

Etovre

He is the cutest baby ever, he looks so happy.

Beth

I thought he was Jack! They look almost the same, especially when they’re smiling! The 5th photo… It’s almost like they’re twins :o Liam looks a bit more like you in general, he kinda has your face! :)

kellyhicks

:) Everyone says Liam looks like me. Love it! But I see a resemblance to Jack too!

MY MATERNITY PHOTOS

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So excited to share these with you! I didn’t get maternity photos done with Jack so when I got pregnant with Liam, I knew I wanted photos to capture this special time. I was 33 weeks here, and Liam came at 41 weeks. It’s crazy looking at these now that he is here. Truly a miracle. Thank you Jesus! And Brianna Rannells did an incredible job. I usually prefer to be on the other side of the camera but she made me feel really comfortable and at ease. It was hard to narrow it down – Bri’s use of lighting is amazing. And this cemented my firm belief in maternity photos!:)

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Samantha

Absolutely stunning. I have 4 kids (with NO MORE on the way) and never got maternity pictures taken. I totally regret that now. Nothing more beautiful!

So gorgeous! Thank you for sharing these, what a beautiful mama!

Andrea

Kelly,
I have so many compliments to give to you. However, I am going to give one that may seem a little odd. You always look like you smell lovely.

Olivia

These are SO BEAUTIFUL!! As are you!

Lara Hammond

Absolutely stunning, Kelly! You are such a beautiful pregnant mama. :)

Jessica Rose

BEAUTIFUL!! these are great.

Kaitlin Riojas

Where did you get your adorable sweater?!?

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