Happy Birthday Harry Potter!!

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Tomorrow is Harry Potter's birthday and we are HUGE Harry Potter fans here at Gallamore West. Here's a look back at a Harry Potter theme party I did for one of my boys years ago. We're planning a few of the same things and some fun different ideas for our celebration tomorrow!

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Gallamore West is back!!

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

It's been four years since I've blogged here. FOUR YEARS?! In those 4 years, I returned to the classroom as a teacher after staying home with our boys for about 10 years. I never intended to stop blogging, but you know how life sometimes gets in the way. Despite being away from my blog for an extended time, I never even took my blog info off of my Facebook page, I never closed any of my social accounts, and I kept paying my annual blog fees because in the back of my mind, I knew I wanted to come back to Gallamore West... 

Enter a global pandemic in 2020 and suddenly this little blog was no longer in the back of my mind but right smack in the forefront of my mind. I read somewhere that how we're spending our time during this crazy time in our world defines what we are passionate about. Yep, some people are passionate about Netflix, right? No judgment here. I definitely have honed in on my passions these past few months. I actually love being home so that part of this crazy world has worked out to my advantage, as I've worked on all things home, healthy living and school. And those are the exact topics I plan to focus this blog on as I move forward... and maybe a little bit of Netflix too. Hello Schitt's Creek and Dead to Me, I'm talking about you. 

As a teacher, I'm busy planning to start off the new school year virtually. I currently teach Kindergarten so wrapping my head around how to engage virtually with new students I've never met is a challenge and I'm one that excited to take on. I'll also have my own four kids learning at home, so I'm busy setting up a cozy, fun learning space for them (it's going to have a coffee/snack station so I think it will be a hit for me. I mean them... ALL of us). And finally, I've been focusing on my own health and wellness. I've started a vegetable garden, exercise daily, and have made amazing changes to my health that have given me the energy and motivation to take on all that 2020 is throwing my way. I'm excited to share all I'm doing with home, healthy living and school, here with you at Gallamore West. 

Leave me a comment and tell me what you've been most busy doing during these past few months. Is your state open? Closed? Do we even know anymore? 

I'm just so happy to be back and to have you here with me! 

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Plan Your BEST Camping Trip Ever!

Monday, May 16, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and The Coca-Cola Company. All opinions are mine alone. #StaterSnacks #CollectiveBias

Summer is quickly approaching and we are definitely counting down the days here!  My favorite thing about summer is how relaxing it is- no school lunches to pack, no alarm clocks to set, no homework to get done, and less laundry to do since the boys live in swim trunks and flip flops all summer. For me summer is also all about easy meals and quick snacks, especially when we go camping, which is something we love to do. We just got a camping trailer this Spring (yippee!) so we're busy planning our summer camping trips.

And I definitely have a favorite part about camping... it's the FOOD!

So get ready and pack your s'mores ingredients! Seriously, camping is all about fun foods. I plan out all of our meals ahead of time so that I make sure I have all of the ingredients ready to go. It means less time for me in our trailer kitchen and more time relaxing with my family. I ALWAYS bring fun food with us when camping. And remember to pack plenty of easy to grab snacks. 

Sometimes I set out healthy snacks like a platter full of sliced fruit and veggie sticks, but sometimes I like to get some fun camping snacks. They're easy to grab, the kids love them, and they're on sale right now at Stater Bros. Markets. I just set out a tray of snacks and then I get to relax. Aren't those mini Coca-Cola™ cans the cutest? I like them because they are little, so there won't be half full cans sitting around. 

And speaking of S'mores, it's always fun to come up with fun variations of S'mores, like these and these. These cute little S'mores are super fun because they don't even require a fire (perfect if you have little ones and don't want to deal with the stress of little ones by a fire). 

Here's how to make these Mini Nilla Wafer S'mores:

- one package Mini Nilla Wafers
-mini marshmallows
-chocolate buttercream frosting (use this recipe and add 3-4 teaspoons of unsweetened cocoa powder) 
Spread a teaspoon of frosting on a Mini Nilla Wafer. Sprinkle with mini marshmallows and top with another Mini Nilla Wafer. Enjoy! 

Everything is cuter in mini form, right? 

Right now all of our favorite camping snacks are on sale at Stater Bros. so it's the perfect time to stock up for Memorial Day, lazy summer afternoons by the pool, and your upcoming camping trips. Fun, easy snacks = more time for hanging out and relaxing with your loved ones!

 In May, save $2 when you buy any four (4) Coca-Cola .5L/6pk, 6pk glass, mini-cans and Nabisco family size or 12 count single serve products and in June two (2) for $6 mix and match Coke .5L/6pk and Nabisco Toasted Chips with Digital Deals.


So, are you ready to plan your summer camping trip?  Grab yourself some fun snacks and get out there! 


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8 Things to Do When You're Feeling Sad

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

This post contains affiliate links. See more information in my Disclosure Policy

Ugh, it happens to all of us and lately it's been happening to me. I've been feeling sad. So many big decisions and thoughts swirling through my head ALL THE TIME. I feel like I'm spread so thin in so many different directions. Sometimes it takes time before things work themselves out and I KNOW that everything will work out, but in the meantime I can't just drive myself crazy overthinking all of it. 

Here are 8 things to do when you're feeling sad.

1) Clean something. Does that sound crazy? When I'm feeling sad, I find a drawer to be organized, a sink that needs a good scrub, a porch that needs a wash down... any little project where I can see IMMEDIATE, POSITIVE RESULTS works for me because it gets my mind thinking positive thoughts. Here are some tips to keep a house clean

2) Open the windows. Let the breeze flow into your space. Or if it's too cold out to open your windows, light your favorite candle. Breathe in the scent and be grateful for that breath you just took. Seriously, there are people taking their last breath. Be grateful for the breath you're taking in.

3) Turn up the music. Sometimes I just need to crank up Pandora and get lost in the music. This girl gets me. 

4) Make some coffee (this is my FAVORITE coffee maker... well loved every single day here!) Or some tea. Or lemonade. Whatever drink you like, pour it, sip it, and enjoy it. Simple pleasures can go a long way in brightening my day. Pour your drink in your favorite cup, even if it's the cup/glass/mug that you would normally save for a special occasion. 

5) Do something nice for someone else. It's hard living in this world of social media where everyone else seems to have the perfect life, the perfect home, the perfect everything, and when I'm feeling down it seems like everyone has something to smile about except me. Which is ridiculous because it's absolutely not true. Doing something nice for someone else is the perfect way to brighten my own day. 

6) Turn off your phone notifications, let go of Facebook or Instagram or whatever social media may be occupying too much space in your mind. Enjoy your new-found free time to do something productive.

7) Make something that makes you happy. It can be something as simple as a batch of homemade cookies (these Salted Chocolate Chip Cookies always put a smile on my face) or arranging a bouquet of flowers from your yard, or something big that you're been putting off for a long time. 

8) Get moving. I definitely go through my ups and downs with my commitment to exercise, but I ALWAYS feel better after exercising. Whether it's a walk around the neighborhood or a kicking/punching/sweating workout (this kickboxing DVD is under $10 and I LOVE it!), I never regret a workout. 

Get lost in your project, or your cup of coffee, or your exercise, or your music and remember that you are enough. May is Mental Health Awareness Month. If you're having a hard time finding your happy on your own, know that you are far from alone. Make an appointment with your doctor and together you can find your way back to your happy place. xoxo 

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What I'm Reading

Monday, May 2, 2016

This post contains affiliate links. See my Disclosure Policy for more information. 

I've been a bookworm ever since I was little. When I was a kid I loved spending hours and hours in my bedroom reading. I'm still that way as an adult. There is almost nothing I enjoy more than a good book,  a hot cup of coffee, and a cozy corner to read in. For years I seemed to have lost my love for reading, but I think that was just because I had been up to my ears in babies. Now that my boys aren't babies anymore, I actually find myself having moments to breathe, relax, and READ. I love going to the library and grabbing a stack of good, quick reads. 

A photo posted by Laurie Gallamore (@gallamorewest) on

I know many people aren't "library" people anymore, but I guess I'm kind of old fashioned {and cheap... ha!} 

Here are some of my favorite books that I've devoured read in the past month. 

I loved this book because it was about the friendship of 4 women living very different lives, all in the same neighborhood. I was sad when this book ended.

Who doesn't love Bridget Jones? She is SO funny, quirky, and I could "hear" her voice while reading this book. I read it in one afternoon! 

Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave

I enjoyed Eight Hundred Grapes because I love reading about California's wine country. It's so romantic and I like to imagine myself living there :) 

I just started this book last night, so I'm not finished yet and can't give a review just yet. But I love summertime romance stories, so I'm hopeful to have a positive review soon. 

Have any great recommendations for me? 
I'd love to hear your favorites! xoxo 
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