About Julai And Happy Hearty Home
Hello everyone! Welcome to Happy Hearty Home and I’m so honored and delighted that you landed here!
I am Julai, a happy stay-at-home-mama of 2 wonderful, healthy, and super-active boys: JP born in 2017 (I also refer to him as #1 here), and J (#2) born in 2019.
I am a cradle Catholic (from the Philippines) who got into the marriage and motherhood train @35. I am married to a Spanish/Catalan beekeeper.
We speak in a mixture of Catalan, Spanish, English, and Visayan on a daily basis and this is because I am not fluent in speaking Catalan or Spanish.:( So, I have to mix everything up to have a good conversation.:)
I worked taking care of kids, preparing food, cleaning, and organizing houses for a total of 12 years (4 years in Denmark & Norway as an Au pair, and 8 years in Spain as a househelp).
How I Got Into All These.
3 months into my first pregnancy in 2017, my sense of smell started to act up. I couldn’t take the smell of the store-bought cleaning products we had at home. It made me sick!
So, I started to research (a.k.a. Google, YouTube, and books) about natural alternatives to store-bought cleaning products and the research led me to the world of natural alternatives to lessen toxins in the home and a lot of DIY (do-it-yourself) tutorials on how to make and do it.
Then upon more readings and video watching, I came across the real food movement, then it led me to low waste movement, homemade stuff, and reusable/washable products, then it led me to homesteading and sustainable living, and then it led me to minimalism/ simple living.
And I discovered and learned a lot more interesting things after that. It was like finding a treasure that led me to more.
Simplifying Our Family Life & Home
All those discoveries made me passionate about learning more about how to simplify our family life and home.
Though our home is not very full of stuff, it definitely needs simplifying, decluttering, and organizing. I brought a lot of my things when I was still single before we went home to the Philippines for our wedding.
One of the rooms downstairs was full of my things. They were left unattended until my husband commented (a few months before I give birth to our firstborn on where we should put the baby after I give birth.
It pushed me to get into all my things and sort them out. There were a lot of papers of old tickets, brochures, magazine clippings; old clothes that I didn’t wear and didn’t fit anymore; a lot of accessories, etc (I became a shopaholic when I started working in Denmark and more so when I moved to Spain because things are way cheaper).
I still held on to several things (luckily, they fit into the extra closet), so the room already looked uncluttered. But as years go by, I continue decluttering our home, including my closet, my husband’s closet (with his permission), and our kids.
I find decluttering and organizing very soothing and calming. And the clean space as a result inspires me to declutter even more. It also inspires me to learn and read more about minimalism and its related topics like the joy of owning less and mindfulness.
The Birth Of Happy Hearty Home
Originally, I created Happy Hearty Home as my little, happy space on the web where I document and share with you all my personal experiences, lessons learned, and those that I will still learn along the way in my journey of simplifying our family life and home together with my husband and our 2 lovely boys as we strive to attain a happier, simpler, & God-centered family life, one little step at a time.
Connecting with Other Catholic & Christian Moms
But as time goes by, I finally discovered what I really wanted for this blog, and that is for Happy Hearty Home to be a source of helpful information and tips for families who want to explore Catholic destinations and Spain with kids; and also resources and encouragement in living a happy and simple Christ-centered family life.
Here are the topics that you will find here at HHH:
- Catholic Living
- Family Adventures
- Simple Living
And maybe more related topics in the future….
My husband and I are on the same page in our belief that our faith in God should be an important part of our family life. Everything we do should be based on the faith that we have.
We want to put God in the center of our married life and in our home, and we want to make God our highest priority, at all times.
We also want our kids to learn about our faith and about God as early as possible.
But we are human and we fail most of the time. I’ll be sharing here all our “faith experiences” in the hope that they can be of help in your faith journey, as well.
You will find a lot of posts here about prayers, novenas, devotions, and other things related to Catholic/Christian living.
The Sacred Heart of Jesus Enthronement in the Home
How to Start Living Liturgically at Home with Small Kids
Litany of Humility Prayer (with Free Printable Card and PDF)
Serenity Prayer Free PDF Printable ( Long and Short)
I love to go on adventures through travel and I want to continue traveling even with small kids. However, my husband doesn’t want to leave home as much as possible. He used to travel a lot when he was single, but now that we’re married, he finds it tiring to travel with small kids.
But we need to go out of the house once in a while!
And since we can’t visit the Philippines every year, so I made a deal with him: it’s ok if we can’t visit the Philippines more often, but we have to explore Spain even when the kids are still small. He made a deep breath and said ok.:)
We love visiting Catholic/religious destinations and exploring Spain whenever we go on vacation, and I will be sharing all the information and tips here in the hope that other families can use them on their future family trips.
Top 19 Famous Catholic Pilgrimage Sites Around The World
What Is The Difference Between Vacation And Staycation?
9 Things To Do In Santiago de Compostela, Spain With Small Kids
Visiting the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Meritxell in Andorra
My 12 years of experience working in different homes and the clutter we have at home have definitely influenced me to seek simplicity in my own family life and home.
I worked in various families with houses in different settings. Some are very tidy with minimal decorations and stuff, while others were messy and with a lot of small stuff that made cleaning difficult.
I can still remember secretly telling myself that if given the chance to have my own family and house, I would definitely want my house to be of less stuff for easy cleaning and maintenance; and that, I will never iron bedsheets.
With God’s grace and mercy, I have now my own family and we live in a house (that my beloved husband built when he was still single) that is a work in progress as we slowly finish it.
My husband said that he built the house, but I made it into a home by coming into his life and filling it with love and kids. 🙂
Sorry for digressing, but I’ll definitely share with you decluttering and organizing tips, low-waste tips, and other tips and tricks as we work on our goal of simplifying our family life and home by adopting the less is more mentality – the simple living lifestyle.
Less stuff means less time cleaning and maintaining, and more time to spend with the family.
What is Simple Living? (Things You Need To Know)
How to Get Started with Simple Living Even with Small Kids (14 Easy Tips)
Lenten Decluttering (The Best Time to Get Rid of the Unnecessary Things from Home)
How to Celebrate a Low-Waste Christmas with Small Kids
Happy Hearty Home At Your Service
My aim is for this tiny web space to be a source of useful information, tips, resources, and encouragement about exploring Catholic destinations and Spain with kids; and for a happier and simpler Catholic family life.
If you ever need a hand or have questions, feel free to leave them below (or send me an email) and I will be more than happy to help you out.
To God-centered, Happier, Healthier & Simpler Family Life & Home,
Owner, Happy Hearty Home