Wednesday, May 1, 2013

♥ Sunporch Chat ♥ with Elaine of Sunny Simple Life ♥

Good morning and welcome to my sunporch!  Come on in and join Elaine, of Sunny Simple Life, and me for a little visit!  You may already know Elaine, and if you do, you already know how she loves all things concerning home and family including helpful household tips, frugal tips, gardening, and CHICKENS.  If you haven't met her yet,'re in for a treat!  :) 

Grab yourself a piece of strawberry cake and a cup of coffee, make yourself comfortable, and enjoy your visit!

Meet Elaine.........

1) How long have you been blogging and what/who gave you the desire to blog?

Three years. I started with another blog on couponing and then realized I wanted to have more fun and do more of a "Life" blog. I had become a stay at home mom and it was a great way to connect with other like minded women.

2) How did you choose the name of your blog and why?

I was sitting in my backyard and then realized hey it is sunny here and I am all about living a simple life. There you go.

3) What variety of topics do you post on your blog (examples - home decorating, family, gardening, recipes, adoption, homeschooling, crafting, etc....)
OMG lots of topics, family, decorating, cleaning, gardening, frugality and CHICKENS.

4) Tell us a little about yourself and your family.

Married 24 years to a wonderful man. I am so blessed that he married me.
I have four daughters from 21 to four.
When I turned 40 and later that year found out I was pregnant, hubby said that was an awesome gift he gave me.

5) How would you describe your decorating style?

Prim, country, farmhouse, vintage but a lot of what I call "early marriage."



6) What's your favorite color and why?

Red. Just have to have it in all my rooms.

7) Tell us a few of your favorite things (collections, things that make you happy, etc.).

Plants, flowers, rough and rustic prims, crocks and chickens. I have always had a lot of chicken nick knacks in my house.

8) What do you like to do in your spare time (hobbies, crafts, etc..)?

Garden. I love to garden.
I hate to shop except at the nursery and my favorite little home decor shop.

9) What does your dream house look like? (Describe and/or include photo)

A rambling farmhouse with lots of acreage and barns. If I could raise all my own meat I would.


10) If you could visit anywhere, anytime, where would it be and why?

I want to visit New England. I believe I was meant to be born there and live in a Saltbox home and wear Pendleton skirts and cardigan sweaters.

11) Would you share with us a favorite homemaking/organizing tip or recipe, etc..?

Make your bed everyday. It is a gift you give yourself.
 Eat with your family every night. It is vital.

12) Tell us something about yourself that we might not already know from reading your blog. (something unusual, etc..)

Hmm. I can't think of anything too exciting. I only go to the mall maybe twice a year. With four daughters it is not easy to avoid the place but I hate it. I am a Target girl. I do not like clothes shopping. My wardrobe is proof of that.

13) I know that your family is a homeschooling family, and that you have been for awhile. Would you share a little about that? (Maybe how that came to be, how long you’ve been homeschooling, how that works for you, what homeschooling looks like at your house, curriculum, anything you’d like to share here…. from any angle, Elaine).

Oh this is funny. I am not homeschooling right now. I did homeschool my two oldest all through high school with lots of outside classes added in. They are both in college right now. My third daughter is in public high school. This is something she always wanted to do and it was a rough adjustment for ME not her though. She loves it though and is thriving and giving homeschoolers a good name. I worked part time through all the years I homeschooled the oldest two so I had to pick curriculum they could work independently on. I think this has proved so beneficial for my older girls. They never had a problem taking direction in college and working independently and figuring things out. They had been doing it most of their lives. I am torn about what to do with my youngest next year. We will have to wait and see.

14) You raise chickens in the city. I love that! I would love to have chickens! Will you share a little about how that came to be, your thoughts and experiences on raising chickens?

My oldest daughter was tutoring a woman with chickens in our city and that triggered my desire. I have always been a gardener and chickens just fit in nicely. Though they would be happy to eat your garden so you have to reign them in.

15) I love your frugal tips. So many families these days are trying to be budget minded, frugal, and thrifty. Would you share a couple of your favorite frugal/thrifty tips with us?
Use things until they fall apart. Cut up your credit cards. Fix as many things as you can yourself.

16) Tell us a way God has blessed you and/or your family.

Well, I have a hard time with this because I know folks much more Godly than I and they have such hard lives and difficult trials. I think what I have to say then is that so far we have been lucky. No one knows when your life will change forever. When you will have to drag yourself out of bed every day because you lost a child or have a terminal illness. None of us can avoid hard times. They will happen to all of us but what my husband and I have always been focused on is home. We are just home bodies and spend our energies here. I think that keeps things simplified as much as things can be with kids. I don't go lookin for drama let's say. Look at those Housewives shows. How can you act a fool like that in front of your kids and expect good things of it?

17) Share any words of wisdom and/or a favorite quote you'd like to leave with us.

My mother's words live in me everyday. She was my idol and the mom I strive to be. I knew I wanted her life, simple as it was, from the time I was young. As for others:

Nothing is free.

Keep your heart at home. The more you look inward, the happier you will be. Keep your focus on your family and no one else. Strive for what works in your house, not other folks. Do NOT compare yourself to others. I learned this I think somewhere in my thirties and noticed I made a turn to a happier me. And don't read fashion magazines. They will surely depress you. Love that one.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥
Thank you Elaine for being such a wonderful guest!  You are always an inspiration to me, whether it's life with your chickens, homemaking tips, or enjoying your decorating and family.  I really loved your advice and tips and you know I'm definitely with you on all that red!  :)  Visiting your blog is always simply....... a sunny place to be!  :)
Thank you to all the lovely guests that stopped by today!  I hope you enjoyed your visit.  I enjoy seeing my long-time friends here AND meeting new people.  I always look forward to your comments here, and I know Elaine would love for you to stop by and visit her at Sunny Simple Life and drop her a line there too!
Have a great day!
♥ Tammy 


Beth said...

A lovely post!!

Wendi said...

Great words of wisdom! Thanks for sharing. :)

Elaine @ Sunny Simple Life said...

Tammy thank you so much. It is such a pretty post and I think you pulled such lovely pictures. I don't even make such pretty posts. I had lots of fun rereading it. Love ya!!

Kathleen Grace said...

I love your blog, and I have to say you have a gorgeous family! This is a great post, I love the interview:>)

Holly said...

A great post! I really enjoyed "meeting" a new friend!

Andrea at Opulent Cottage said...

What a wonderful post, very real and touching. I always love seeing those four beautiful daughters. Gotta go make my bed now :)
xo, Andrea

Theresa said...

Wonderful post! Love your concise and inspiring answers Elaine. Your blog is one of my favourites.

Primitive Stars said...

Thanks Tammy for such a wonderful interview with Elaine....Enjoyed getting to know her and her lovely family........Blessings Francine.

curlyrose49 said...

I really love Elaine's blog and this was a great post about her and her family. Great job with her interview too :)

curlyrose49 said...

I really love Elaine's blog and this was a great post about her and her family. Great job with her interview too :)

Kris said...

Great interview! I love Elaine! She is a dear friend!
xo Kris

Sheila said...

Tammy, I thoroughly enjoyed your chat with Elaine today! What a lovely lady, with such wonderful words of wisdom and a beautiful family! Another gal that loves the color RED.
Again, wonderful chat!
Blessings to you both,

20 North Ora said...

Tammy - what a great post! Elaine is such a special person and I love her blog. You ask a lot of interesting questions and it makes me feel like I know her so much better.


Anonymous said...

Very nice to meet Elaine. I especially enjoyed her decorating and gardening photos.

Tree Hugger - Suzan said...

So much fun!! LOVE - LOVE the chicken house and the backyard and her adorable daughters!! What a wonderful day ya'll had together!

Joy ~ Doodlebug ~ said...


I really enjoyed this Sunporch Chat! :) Ms. Elaine's decorating style is so cute. I love the whites and reds together. :) Her chickens look like fun, too!

Love you! 8!

Joy :)

Beth @ E. lizard Breath Speaks said...

I love Elaine, she is super sweet & i love her blog. thanks for this post today, love all the details ... so fun!! have a great week. ( :

Anonymous said...

Love Elaine, and this was a delightful interview - thanks so much for sharing with us. Mary

Cozy Little House said...

Elaine is a role model for mothering and just women in general. I greatly admire her.

Tania @ Out Back said...

Fantastic post, I really enjoyed reading it. I loved learning more about Elaine and her beautiful family and life :)