10 Fun Things About Carnival Cruises

Last month we took our family on a Carnival cruise.  February was the perfect month to go this year with all the snow and cold weather we experienced.  My husband and I booked this cruise about 6 months ago, but we didn’t tell our kids.  It was a long six months, and we almost spilled the beans so many times.  But the end surprise was so much fun to share with them.  We actually waited until the morning that we were leaving to tell them.  We woke them up early for a “family” meeting where we let them know they weren’t going to school because of our trip.  The look on their faces was priceless.  We have never seen them get ready so quickly on a school morning :-)

I wanted to find a fun way to share some of the pictures I took that week with you, so today I am putting them into our top 10 things we enjoyed the most about Carnival cruising.

10 Fun Things About Carnival Cruises

1.  Carnival Cruises are affordable.  Vacations with 5 people tend to get pricey when you start figuring in lodging, food, travel expenses, clothing, and so many more things.  We love that a cruise includes most of those expenses in one flat fee.  You do still have your travel expenses getting there and buying whatever clothes you may need, but the cruise itself is very doable.

If you book one of the older ships, you can also have 5 people in one cabin.  Yes, that is tight, but totally doable as well.  Even with our kids getting older, we still had plenty of room. The only thing you need a cabin for on a cruise is sleeping and showering.  Why spend more money on a bigger cabin that you are not going to be in?   [Read more...]

Camera Giveaway

Today I am excited to share this fun giveaway with you.  You have a chance to win a camera for yourself and a friend.  How fun is that?!?!




Okay get ready! We’ve teamed up with some fabulous sites to be able to offer a 2 camera giveaway!


Just in time for Valentine’s Day.

Capture those sweet smiles or get some beautiful pictures of the beautiful goodies you make!

We’ve made it super easy to enter here.

Share this giveaway on FB for more entries.

Thank you to the sites participating and offering the awesome giveaway.

Good luck.

Our fingers and toes are crossed for you:)

Giveaway ends on February 12, 2014 at midnight MST.


Our last year has been one of many changes and adjustments.  We followed God’s leading in our lives and went into full time ministry.  It truly amazes me to look back on the last year and see how God provided for our family.  Were there times I doubted His provision?  Yes, I am human after all.  I like security.  I like knowing what is going to happen and when it is going to happen.  I also like knowing there is money in our account to pay those bills that do not stop coming in, even when you change jobs and take a large pay cut.


But that is where trust comes in.  I had to completely trust God for those things I could not control.  I had to trust my husband in his choices for our family.  It’s a hard but easy choice to make.  My head knows that God will keep us safe and provided for…sometimes it takes my heart longer.  My human nature does not like to be out of my comfort zone.   [Read more...]

Merry Christmas from the BruCrew Family

christmas card finish

I want to wish you a very Merry Christmas from my family to yours.

Make sure you take time this holiday season to enjoy your family and to eat those cookies, but most importantly remember to celebrate our Savior’s birth.  God sent his Son to be born a child who would become our King.  That sure does make the presents and the busyness of our lives seem unimportant.  I can’t wait to unplug for a little bit and to enjoy my family as we celebrate CHRISTmas.  May your heart be lifted in praise for the wonderful gift  of Jesus and the joy that He brings into our lives.

Isaiah 9:6
For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.

Luke 2:14
…a Saviour is born who is Christ the Lord.  Glory to God in the highest,and on earth, peace, good will toward men.

My Favorite Things Giveaway

My Favorite Things Giveaway | Inside BruCrew Life

It’s that time of year when you start to look for the perfect gift item for friends and family members.  Today I am so excited to share this fun giveaway with you.  I am partnering with an awesome group of blog friends this year.  We have all gathered some of our favorite things into a gift basket, and YOU have the chance to win those items.  I had a blast putting together the things that I use all the time just for you.

Not only is this giveaway a fantastic way to drum up gift ideas for anyone and everyone on your list this year, it is a great Wish List Idea Generator for yourself as well. Every single giveaway basket is chock full of fabulous, tried-and-true, favorites and gift ideas. Even if it’s a treat, it’s always fun to give to a friend with a note that says, “Enjoy one of my favorites” for Christmas, birthdays, or just because.

To enter-

  • Check out the gift collage below
  • Scroll to the bottom to see the details for MY favorite things giveaway
  • Enter to win my gift basket at the giveaway below
  • HOP to all of the other sites to enter to win their gifts!
  • Look around and enjoy the sites of thecreative bloggers–they will not disappoint!
  • *Note- if you receive an error message, click to the blog’s home page



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BruCrew Top Ten

Are you ready for the weekend?

We actually do not have anything planned for the weekend…yet.  I’m thinking maybe a drive to an apple orchard or pumpkin patch sounds like fun.  The problem is that my kids have reached the age of thinking those things are not very cool.  So maybe we can go for a hike later tomorrow afternoon.

Tonight my youngest is having some friends spend the night.  4 ten year old boys all night long…please send chocolate (for me, not them)!!! This could get nuts!

Are you ready for some fun finds?  Here are my top 10 from the past few weeks.  I love sharing my instagrams and the yummy things I have pinned or tried.  Hopefully you will see something new that you just have to go find :-)


1.  My daughter and I went with a group of ladies and girls from our church to the Secret Keeper Girl Crazy Hair Tour and saw One Girl Nation.  Love the message that they are promoting that everyone is made unique, and that we need to embrace not being normal.  I want my girlie to know that inner beauty, modesty, and purity are more important than being popular and fitting in.

Crazy Hair Collage

2.  My mind was blown when I saw Bake Your Day’s Peanuts & Candy Corn Reese’s Pieces Rice Krispie Treats!  Reese’s and candy corn…oh yeah!!!!


3.   The weather has cooled off so much lately.  Time to pull those Crock Pots out for meals this fall.  Have you seen these Crock Pot Seasoning Mixes?  They are perfect for adding the perfect flavor to your meals.  We tried the Chili one the other night and loved it.  Right now you can enter your favorite slow cooker meal on Crock Pot Seasoning Mixes Facebook page for a chance to win free groceries.


4.  I have a thing for weeds in the fall.    I know they are just weeds, but seriously how pretty are these!!!


5.  It’s been too long since I have made donuts.  I can’t get these Maple Glazed Doughnuts from A Pumpkin and a Princess out of my mind.  Yum!!!


6.  Best thing to happen to my coffee this month…Dark Chocolate Fudge creamer.  It’s the bomb!!!


7.  There is just something so cute about a decorated cupcake!  The Cookbook Queen completely knocked these Oreo Spider Cupcakes out of the Halloween ballpark!  I never thought I would say this, but how cute is this spider?!?!

Oreo Spider Cupcakes
8.  Need more candy to create those cute edible crafts and cupcakes?  Check out SweetWorks!  They have such a great assortment of candies and chocolates to choose from.  I am looking forward to playing with the big box of goodies they sent me.


9.  Craving sweet and salty?  This Pretzel Toffee from Jen’s Favorite Cookies looks like it would definitely conquer those cravings!  Man, I wish I had some right now!!!


10.  I picked up some bags of Pumpkin Kisses and Candy Corn M&M’s while out shopping.  Guess what I will be doing this weekend?



Stay up to date on all the BruCrew baking here:


Have a wonderful weekend enjoying your family and this beautiful fall weather.

*BruCrew Life was sent some product samples to try out.  No other compensation was given.  All opinions are 100% my own.

Tomato Avocado Egg Sandwich and BruCrew Top Ten

Happy Friday the 13th!  I think our freak hot weather week from earlier has left…hopefully for good.  Bring on the cool weather so we can wear sweatshirts and have bonfires without sweating.

Today’s Top 10 is slightly different.  I have a fun product and recipe to share with you for the #1 spot.  I didn’t think you would mind :-)

Tomato Avocado Egg Sandwich - the traditional egg sandwich gets a twist from tomato, avocado, and cheese  http://www.insidebrucrewlife.com
1.  I had an opportunity a few months ago to see this Sandwich Maker from Hamilton Beach in action at the BlogHer conference.   It is such a fun little appliance, and I knew my family would love making breakfast with it.  I was so excited when they contacted me about reviewing one in my home.  When my husband saw the sandwich maker, he wasn’t that impressed, and he didn’t think it would work.  Guess who uses this machine almost every single day now???  That’s right…he had to take back all those things he said.  He loves how easily this cooks an egg and toasts your muffin at the same time.  Seriously it gets used every day!

I love that this appliance is small enough to keep on the counter without taking up much space.  With someone in the family using it every day, I didn’t want to put it away.  But it is also small enough that it wouldn’t take up much room in a cabinet either.   [Read more...]

Warrior Dash 2013

mud 1

Last weekend my husband and my oldest son and I joined some friends and ran the Warrior Dash in a town near ours.

Yes, I’m crazy :-)

Seriously I am such a girlie girl.   I love cute clothes and accessories.  I don’t leave my house without make up or real clothes on.  No pajama pants or yoga pants leave my house unless I’m going to the gym.  Now obviously there have been a few instances, but I can really only think of one or two where I did go in a store that way.  So running a mud run is quite a stretch for me.  But it actually isn’t the first one I have done.

Two years ago my husband and I did and finished a Tough Mudder.  13 miles of running through the mud and water in 50* weather.  Now that was crazy!!!   [Read more...]

Back to School Shopping with Gordmans

This is a sponsored opportunity with Gordmans.  There is something so fun about back to school shopping. Freshly sharpened pencils, unbroken crayons, new markers, and the smell of brand new shoes and back packs. I remember going shopping every summer for new shoes for the first day of school. It was always one of my favorite shopping days. Today my kids enjoy going to the store for new supplies and shoes too. They love picking out their own colors and styles. I really enjoy seeing their personalities come out in their choices. But unfortunately all this supply shopping can really hit you in the wallet, especially when you have more than one child to shop for. Recently I had the opportunity to shop Gordmans with my daughter to see what we could put together for the first day of school.

I am no stranger to Gordmans. It has been open in our town for quite a few years, and I enjoy visiting every chance I get. My daughter and I went out for coffee and then headed over with a $25 gift card to see what she could put together.

Back to School Shopping with Gordmans - find a big selection of name brand clothes at a discounted savings at Gordmans  http://www.insidebrucrewlife.com

Gordmans is a large department store that has many bright and colorful choices for outfits. They have a huge selection of brand name clothing that is a fraction of the price you would see in any other store. They enjoy providing big selections at a bigger savings. This makes this mom happy when shopping for clothes for three children.   [Read more...]

BruCrew Top Ten

Happy happy Friday!  I cannot believe this is THE last Friday of our summer vacation.  It went by so quickly.  Did anyone get through their summer bucket list?  We definitely didn’t get close to doing that kind of stuff…maybe it would have helped if we actually made a physical list.  Put that on the mental list for next summer :-)

I am off to do the last minute school supply and clothes shopping today.  Wish me luck that it isn’t all picked over.

I hope you enjoy all the instagrams and fun finds in todays post.

1. Last week we went hiking on our “retreat”.  Here are a few pictures from over the few days of “boot camp”…by the last day I think my husband was done with me taking pics of us.hiking collage

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BruCrew Top Ten

Happy weekend everyone!  I hope every one is enjoying the last steamy days of summer vacation.  We counted the days and our kids only have 22 days left until school starts again.  How crazy is that?   Time to get berry picking and to the pool a few more times before home work starts.

Although I think the kids are starting to get ready for school…probably more to see their friends and get into a routine.    Routine is a good thing to have most of the year.  I am actually ready to have a set schedule too.  We can only take so many weeks of not doing anything very productive.

Ready for my Top Ten picks?  These are my favorite instagrams or internet finds that caught my eye lately…

1.  A few weeks ago I made this wedding cake.  Every single time I agree to make one, I say it is the last one.  Seriously this is the last one!  Please help me remember why…4 days of nothing but cake, frosting, and decorating.  Oh, and the stress of making sure it is perfect because umpteen million people will be staring at it as it sits on the dance floor.

wedding cake

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BruCrew Top Ten

I hope everyone had a fun and safe Fourth of July yesterday.  My house was super quiet as I worked on cakes and frosting.  Of course I got bored after a while and headed out for some shopping while the stores were still open.  Then it was back home to get the wedding cake knocked out.  All I have to do now is stack all the layers and add the icing decorations.  Then comes the stressful part of driving the cake to the reception location…that is always a very tense drive.  This is the last big cake order I have scheduled for the summer.  I think I’m going to keep it that way.

Now let’s get to the top 10 things and instagrams that caught my eye in the last 2 weeks.

1.  We took a day away from all work and went to the Michigan Dunes.  The weather this year has been crazy cool, but it didn’t stop our kids from getting into the freezing Lake Michigan water.  It was a fun day of hiking up the sand and playing frisbee.  We need more days like this.


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