Why I’m writing about time management

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time-management-melting-clockAnne Dovel writing about time management. Now, that’s a first!  But, this morning, as I broke from my very new morning routine, I had a thought.

If you struggle with anything related to time management, you need an expert like me. Whose time often looks like a melting clock at the end, or sometimes the beginning, of the day. You need someone who doesn’t have it all together and for whom managing time doesn’t look like a perfectly polished silver spoon.

Do you get frustrated or discouraged when you read a blog post or book about time management, when the author is someone for whom it’s really easy. Their tone is, “this is a no-brainer. Duh. Just do it. I don’t see why you can’t figure this out, it’s really simple. I’ve never had a problem with managing my time and so now I will teach you…oh you pitiful human…how to fix your time management problems.”

And, that’s why I’m going to write about time management, among other things. Because it’s not simple for me. It’s not natural. I’m that cartoon dog in the movie, “squirrel.” But, somehow, I’ve still built a successful business. I may not have built it smart, time wise, but I have learned. And the reason you can learn from me, is because I know the struggle. And I know the rewards, of making better use of my time.

The struggles are real, but so are the solutions. Have faith, reader.

Until next time, which will be really soon if I don’t fall off my current morning routine wagon. I told you, I’m not perfect.

Anne Dovel

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How Our Marriage Was Not So Unlike Han and Leia’s

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My talented, and newly married niece, wrote a blog post about Star Wars and how they depicted marriage in the relationship between Han and Leia. If you haven’t seen the movie yet, where have you been? But, this is a gentle warning that reading any further, or visiting the blog post mentioned on my niece’s site, will in fact, give away the plot line.  Start by reading her blog post  here> What Star Wars Teaches About Marriage
And here we go. This is my reply to her thought provoking post.

I personally was disappointed with several things in the Star Wars movie, but then I’m also not one who would show up dressed as Princess Leia, either. I went for entertainment. It didn’t live up to all the hubbub, in my book. Aside from the fact that Han’s son was a very weak character and bore no resemblance to his parentage…like… Zero resemblance. And again, I digress. That probably bothered me the most, though, to be real honest. I’m pretty shallow when it comes to movies.

Long-term marriage and being romantically in love after 30 years, takes a plan and intentionality. I can safely say that in the first year or 2 of our marriage, I was hopelessly, romantically in love with the Hubs. And I’ll be blogging a lot about that in later months when I know what my blog is going to be about.  But, here’s a hint. It didn’t take being in different galaxies for us to drift apart. Speaking from experience, we lived in the same house and it felt like we were galaxies apart.

What the Star Wars storyline shows is that Leia and Han had individual goals and they chose to make that individuality more important than coordinating and being one. Coming up with a solution that worked for both of them.  It is Hollywood, but it’s nothing new.

Good news is, and I won’t ruin my future blog posts, the Hubs and I are set to have a better 30 years, round 2, than our first 30 years. 😉

Dear Niece, of Dandelion Pie Blog,  never stop being intentional. Never stop improving your plan to care for each other. And a little tidbit I learned on our road back to marriage rebuilding, romantic love is not unconditional. You have created the conditions whereby Saia is in love with you. If either of you stop doing that, the romantic love fades.
The Hubs was every bit as romantic as Saia when we got married. We believed we would be the exception to all the broken marriages. We got complacent. Learn from your auntie and uncle.

And that is that.

Want a great marriage that lasts and whereby you are more romantically in love in 30 years than you are today?

Be intentional.

Until next time,
Anne Dovel


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News calls him a ‘Lincoln Man.’ He’s my boy.

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Three days ago, after a fun day learning from and teaching Beachbody coaches, I got a call from my oldest son. “Mom,” he began. “First of all, we are all okay.”

It didn’t take long to get the lowdown. In short, he walked out of a building that exploded and only sustained a small cut on his head.

Moms. Pray for your children. They never stop needing you to pray for them. It’s not unusual for me to pray for protection for my children. But, on this morning, when I didn’t even know what his plans were, I wrote a specific prayer for my oldest son that God would keep him safe so he could continue to use his gifts for the glory of God. I looked back at my journal after the news reporter said it was a miracle no one was killed. God is good.

News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

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Recipes from a Halfling’s Pantry

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My sister and niece have done it! They have published their first ebook, Recipes from a Halfling’s Pantry.

Recipes from  Halfling's Pantry

Recipes from Halfling’s Pantry

Here’s a snippet of their blog post about it,

Fussing over food, talking about food, planning food-themed events, and of course preparing and eating the best types of food–all of these things bring us joy. Bringing together great food with friends and family, and enjoying the fruits of our labors is indeed a joyous thing, isn’t it?

 If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”…

And the fact that our extended family and our friends feel much the same way, is a source of constant joy, as well. We are blessed!

Have you thought of this? Hobbits were locavores. Hobbits insisted on organic veg, because, of course, they grew their own. Hobbits enjoyed meat, but it was good meat–raised or caught by themselves or a trusted farmer in the region. Gosh, if Hobbits were real and existing today, I might even venture to say that they’d be at the farmer’s markets, selling their extra bunches of herbs and root veggies to folks in the area. They’d be leaving bags of zucchini on the doorsteps of their neighbors. Wow. Hobbits would be trendy in our foodie culture, as we try to do better than the corporate farm, mass-produced, nutrient-poor convenience foods that glut our grocery stores.

To see the rest of the blog post, click HERE to go to the Vomiting Chicken Blog.

Enjoy! It’s another cold day in Nebraska and I’m going to put off packing up my house and go sew for awhile.

Have a beautiful weekend.

Anne Dovel
Wife, Mom, Entrepreneur.
I’m also a quilt & yarn shop’s dream customer!


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Marty lost 251 pounds – Help by voting for his story!

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I’m taking a quick pause from my sewing to share this amazing story. My friend Marty Jantze, from my home town, is in the running for some big cash because of his inspiring weight-loss story! Please do me a favor and go read his story and VOTE HERE.

Marty worked and sweated to take those pounds off, and drank our favorite Shakeology, and is proving to everyone around him that even if you’ve been heavy your whole childhood and adult life, you can make a change. I’m so proud of Marty and I hope you’ll join me in taking a few seconds to show your support by voting!

Who do you know who wants to lose weight and change the quality of their life, without dangerous surgery? Show them Marty’s pictures! Don’t forget to VOTE HERE!Vote for Marty

Now, back to my sewing room for my 10 minutes of sewing. :) Again!

Anne Dovel
Wife, Mom, Entrepreneur

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My 10 minutes of sewing a day

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Call it a goal or resolution, but I decided no matter how crazy busy we are, with the house renovations, our sons’ activities and business, I still have time to sew or knit for at least 10 minutes a day. Last year, I committed to 30 minutes a day and I didn’t get it done. And here’s what I’m finding out. By committing to just 10 minutes a day, I’ve been able to sew much longer than that most days. But 10 minutes is very doable so I don’t hesitate to hop up to my sewing room for a quick seam or three.

In the last 2 weeks, I’ve nearly finished two quilt “ufos” and have nearly caught up with my Moda Mulberry Stars block-of-the-month.

If I don’t really feel like sitting down, I’ll trim some blocks or prepare some pieces for the next block. It’s just 10 minutes a day and it makes me feel so good.

Tag me on Instagram @prairiewomanarts   with hashtag #10minaday . I’d love to see what you are up to! I don’t recall the Instagrammer offhand, but another tag to follow is #sewmystash2015 . That’s self-explanatory!

Until next time,

Anne Dovel
Wife, Mom, Entrepreneur


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Thick and Chewy Molasses Crinkles

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The boys are at play practice tonight. I sent them off with a quick meal of chicken enchiladas and have some molasses crinkles in the oven for when they get back home. I wish I could say that I did this all the time, but the last few months I’ve gotten out to the habit of cooking full meals for my family. We grab and growl or eat out a lot, due to our barnhouse project. Barnhouse is not a word, but we bought a house that looks like a barn, so I’m going to keep using that word until I don’t get the little red squiggly lines under it that say I should check the spelling!  But, I digress.

Here is the recipe. I use golden whole wheat flour, either that I grind myself or from Montana Wheat, which you can find in the bag at Walmart now!

Thick and Chewy Molasses Crinkles
Recipe type: Dessert
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 48
These are a thick and chewy molasses cookie, with crinkled tops. My son once baked and sold these by the dozen at farmer's market. He never brought any home!
  • ½ cup oil
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ c. molasses
  • 1 cup unbleached white flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons soda
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • ½ teaspoon cloves
  • Sugar for dipping dough balls in
  1. Mix oil, sugar, egg and molasses until fluffy. Add all other ingredients. Mix well. If it's a little too soft, refrigerate for 20 minutes. Shape into walnut-size balls. Dip tops in sugar. Place sugar-side up, 3 inches apart on a nonstick or parchment lined cookie sheet.
  2. Sprinkle the top of each cookie with 3 drops of water to get a crackled effect. (I never do this, but you can if you want!) Bake in a 350 degree oven 10-12 minutes, just until set but not hard.

You can be healthy and eat a cookie now and then. You don’t have to give everything up. Just don’t live on cookies, you know what I mean?

Until next time,

Anne Dovel
Wife, Mom, Entreprenuer

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