Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Slow cooker favorite

On busy days, I like to throw something in the crock pot all day. Yum...
Disclaimer:  I do not cook my children, nor would I encourage it.  He likes to climb into small spaces and hang out there- I did not put him there. Yes I did make sure no one plugged it in.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

What does it say about me...

Is it bad that I put my Christmas wreath inside my door, instead of facing outside?  I just love my wreath, and my front door is not very attractive with that metal security screen door thing, it just wouldn't look nice out there, and who would see it anyways?  So it's inside this year, and I love it!
But I did start to feel a little sad for my bare unattractive front door so I gathered up some old big outdoor ornaments that I didn't quite know what to do with and hung them under a big bow (I'm not a bow maker)  but I think it turned out alright!  Better than nothing anyways, something festive to greet any visitors, and then they can come in and enjoy my wreath too. 
Today I'm spending a little time crafting!  Hopefully finished products will be worth sharing soon...

Sunday, December 05, 2010

Time for Christmas Cards!

I LOVE getting and giving Christmas cards- it's really one of my favorite things about Christmas time.  Getting the mail is even more exciting than normal!  My favorite place for photo cards is Shutterfly.  Their selection gets bigger and better every year and I love the way their stationary cards feel compared to a basic photo.  Here are a few of my favorite designs this year:

I love that you can search for certain colors, or how many pictures you want to use, or by designer.  Plus if you like to do digital scrapbooking or design your own, you can upload and print your own creation on their cards HERE
Shutterfly has the best products and there's always sales if you get on their mailing list.  I've gotten cards, calendars, photo books (TONS of them!) mugs and of course prints from them and always been thrilled with them. I always make calendars for my parents Christmas gift with pictures of all of their grandkids and order them from Shutterfly- my mom requests it now.  I think I'm going to make Sam a desk calendar this year. Right now they have a promotion for bloggers to get 50 free cards and you can read about that HERE.  (thanks for letting me do this- I am hopefully getting free cards for it but I honestly LOVE Shutterfly products!) So have you ordered your cards yet??

Sunday, November 28, 2010


Is it possible for a 5th child to really believe that they are loved every bit as much as the 1st child, even though their 1st birthday was celebrated with cake 5 minutes before bedtime, as opposed to big, extravagant party that baby #1 had on their 1st birthday? I hope so, because I sure love this little guy!  How is it possible that he is 1?
Miss G celebrated her birthday too- this took all my party planning energy, I really wanted to make up for the lack of celebrating last year when I was in that new baby fog! (see, last year his birthday was all about baby H!)  We did a pirate party complete with a treasure hunt, pin the patch on the pirate, cannon ball blast, (that was popping black balloons to retrieve treasure- thanks Sam for blowing up 50 balloons!) and decorating paper mache treasure chests.  I used some of the free printables from HERE as well as the cute pirate clip art I showed in the last post for decorations and to turn the hot dogs into little pirate ships- that might have been my favorite part! I never take enough pictures!
We have also been potty training, Thanksgiving, losing teeth, and working through mounds and mounds of laundry and dishes as usual!  I miss blogging and reading your blogs though!  Thanks for hanging around, I really appreciate those who take the time to read and comment, you're the best! Miss G left this letter for the tooth fairy and I loved it.
I couldn't bring myself to check the "no" box with that frowny face beside it so I had to leave a note explaining that I didn't have any real pictures of myself- she cut that part off and kept it somewhere safe...

Monday, November 15, 2010

If you want to be cute about it...

The talented ladies from  eighteen25 made this so cute and functional Christmas Notebook that puts mine to shame! 
If you want a fun project and a really cute notebook, check out their instructions and free printables HERE.  I want one!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Found some cute gift tags

You can download and print these adorable little gift tags for free from CocoaMint HERE.  She's got some other cute gift tags on her blog as well and lots of cute things in her etsy store HERE. (Including the adorable pink pirate clip art I am using for Miss G's birthday party this month!)

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Start Your Christmas Notebook

I don't even pretend to be organized, but I have found one thing that makes my Christmas shopping so much better- the Christmas notebook. I went to do a "quick" Costco run this morning and was sidetracked by all the great new things they have out for the holidays and ended up getting a couple gifts, so I knew it was time to pull out my notebook. I got it a few years ago from the Michaels $1 bins and pull it out each year when I start shopping.  It's very basic, I make a page for each of the kids, and then list any other people I will be shopping for on another page.  When I buy something for Christmas, I write it down and put a check next to it.  If I hear them mention wanting something, or have a great idea, I will write it down to remind me later when I'm shopping.  It's also great to keep track of what you're spending on everything.  I stash gifts in a big box up in my closet and when I got it down today I discovered 3 puffer jackets I bought on clearance last year, 2 cute sweaters, and a Halloween T I got for Mr. C - whoops.  But I was excited that I'm that much closer to being done shopping for this year!  (and glad I didn't pick up another jacket at Costco)  I have a tendency to buy and forget, and then buy more, and then I don't return things, and it's money wasted.  This notebook has been a lifesaver for me during the holidays, hopefully it can help you too!
handmade projects

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Duck Tape Halloween Costume

I'm posting near the Happiest Place on Earth tonight!  We are all totally worn out from 2 days of rides, characters, churros and lots of walking.  Continuing with duck-tape crafting, I made my boys race car driver costumes out of $4 Walmart clothes and blue, silver and white duck tape!  I need some help, if you have a quick second click HERE and rate our entry!  (yes I like contests) It's not solely how they choose the winners but it does help.  While you're there browse the other entries and get some great inspiration for quick, cheap Halloween costumes! Thanks so much!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Halloween Monster Finger Cookies

I wanted to make witch finger cookies, but my sugar cookie dough puffs up too much and they looked more like monster fingers to me after baking!  They were a huge hit though, and very easy! 
Use your favorite sugar cookie recipe and mix in some green food coloring.  Scoop dough and roll into "fingers" and press an almond into the tip before baking.  Gross and yummy :)

Monday, October 11, 2010

Halloween Countdown block calendar

A couple weeks ago I got together with my sister-in-laws and we made these block calendars to countdown to Halloween and mine's finally finished!  You can find the instructions HERE.  My sister-in-law Jackie did hers a little different and I love them too:
I've started one for Christmas, and I can't wait to make a birthday one too!  Though that one might need 3 blocks because kids start counting down to their birthdays months in advance...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Duck Tape Pumpkin Pop Yard Stakes

That title was a mouthful!  I was trying to think of an idea to enter this contest, and I came up with these giant pumpkin pops! They were really easy, and using black and white Duck Tape, it was pretty much instant crafty gratification.  I started by wrapping each of the wooden dowels with white tape.  Then I put a glob of glue onto the end of the stick and poked it into the bottom of a fake pumpkin. (I punched holes in the bottom with scissors.)  Once the glue dried, I used black tape to create the stripes on the pumpkins, and then wrapped the whole top with clear cellophane and tied it with a ribbon- done!  They look almost good enough to eat!

Thursday, October 07, 2010

Keep Calm-o-matic Poster Generator

This website is fun, create your own "KEEP CALM" poster spoof. I say this too much, I think I need to put the poster in my kitchen and just point to it!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Halloween is coming!

So if I haven't posted anything in a month, can I still be called a blogger? I can't believe it's been so long, and if you're still with me you are awesome!  I used to wonder why people always seemed so busy, and why I wasn't, and I'm trying to figure out what changed that, and when, but time is flying!
Things are good though- we brought out the Halloween decorations and that always puts me in a good mood!  I tried my hand at canning pears over the weekend, and also canned some hot pickled green beans that I'm really excited about.  I got together with my sister-in-laws for a craft night and made some of those countdown block calendar things that you've seen all over, mine aren't quite finished but that's up next on the agenda- I'll post pictures soon!  I have snuck some time for reading blogs of course, and here's a couple links for you to check out:  Urban Comfort has some really great decorating ideas- including this awesome (dog) bone garland!
and after you go see all her great Halloween ideas, make sure you stop by Better Homes and Gardens to vote for the mask she created for them!  (click here) Besides being totally amazingly talented, she is also one of the sweetest people I've "met" through blogging!

I'm totally in LOVE with these fabric pumpkins from the Cottage Home . She MADE these and you can see her simple tutorial HERE.
Tip Junkie has compiled a list of 32 Creative Ways to Decorate a Pumpkin and there are some really pretty and unique ones.
Tatertots and Jello rounded up 20 free Halloween printables- and you know how I love free printables!
It's well past my bedtime, so that's all for now but I have a lot of things I'm exicted to share soon so I will be much better this month than last!

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Cancel your cable- Watch Penelope

That's what I've been doing tonight- watching Penelope and thinking everyone should see it.
I admit that I totally miss the days of having digital cable with DVR, but those days are long gone, and we finally cancelled even our basic cable, and signed up for Netflix and it's great!  $9 a month and you get as many DVDs as you want, one at a time, and they are fast.  Plus there is a ton of stuff available to watch instantly online, including Penelope, which may be my all time favorite movie.  Plus all the "My Name is Earl" episodes are there too, and lots of other shows, commercial free, what more can you ask for?

Madame Alexander dolls are back!

The McDonalds Happy Meals have some new adorable little Madame Alexander dolls in them.  I'm obsessed with these!  The are the only Happy Meal toys I can never get rid of.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Yo yo yo!

I finally tried making yo-yo's! And they are really easy, fun and cute! I used the tutorial from Heather Bailey HERE to make mine with some fabric scraps, then added some felt flowers and buttons and glued them to clips for the girls.  Instant (cute) gratification! And this is my favorite picture of the day- I had to share:

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Free Photo book!

If you haven't tried Picaboo yet, now's the time!  They are offereing a free large photo book to new customers and after watching the short video demonstration, I can't wait to make one!  They have so many options for customizing the pages- you can do a lot more than on other photo book sites.  Click HERE to get going on yours!  The offer expires on 8/31 so hurry!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

First Day of School Action

The girls started back to school this week- it started as a pretty typically exciting day, everyone woke up early and got ready super fast.  I was an extra nice mom and made cinnamon rolls for breakfast and just as my house started to fill with the heavenly scent of warm cinnamon, we heard a quick knock at the door and everyone went running yelling "daddy!" and when they threw open the front door Sam was there, with a towel over his hand and in a quick, nervous voice he asked me to get his brother to take him to the hospital because he had cut his hand!  (I later found out it was actually stomped on by a horse)  I pushed the kids back inside and ran next door (where his brother lives) and while he was getting ready I ran back home and asked him how bad it was, and then he showed me, and said "could you get a bag for the rest of my finger."  (I won't show you that picture!) When I came back with the baggie he was laying on the garage floor and not answering my questions or really responding in any way, so I decided we needed an ambulance. (in an emergency, dialing 9-1-1 is all I'm good for anyways) He was either going into shock or a heat stroke, so I sent my brother in law back home, and then the next thing I know, Sam's in the shower, ignoring me telling him that the 911 operator wants him to get out of the shower and lay down immediately. 
Anyways, he was feeling a lot better by the time they arrived but we let them take him away and after a long day in the ER, and some time with a great plastic surgeon, I got my husband back (well 99% of him anyways) and he's on the road to recovery.
The kids did get to school only a few minutes late and had a great day.  My fabulous sister in law came over after school so I could go be with Sam for the rest of the day, and we came home that night to discover that somehow with all of my kids, plus hers, she had managed to do some serious cleaning and decluttering, fix everyone dinner, make my kitchen shine, give the boys baths, fold laundry, and probably like 10 other things I haven't noticed yet!  I'm looking forward to finding a new routine now that school is in and making more time for being creative and blogging! 

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Print your own decals!

I love this idea!  Cathe Holden from Just Something I Made created some great vintage style decals for various containers and printed them onto Injet Printable Decal pages!  I don't think I knew there was such a thing!  My mind is excited about all the possibilities... check out her post HERE.  She's got some great free downloads for you to label all kinds of things around the kitchen.
PS- the kids started back to school today! Some fun stories for another time... I have some mixed emotions about that but the good news is I will probably be blogging more! 

Monday, August 02, 2010

Ok one more for the moms

Ok another good one for all the moms! Watched it tonight while looking for FHE helps and just had to share!

For all the mothers

I've told you of my admiration for Hannah Keeley before, she's so awesome!  You've got to sneak over there real quick and read her "5 Lies of Motherhood."  I won't do it justice if  I try to summarize it, but it's not long and I think every mom should read it!  It's so easy to buy into those lies, I think sometimes we all believe at least one or another on some level.  I know that for me, being a mom is it for me right now- this is what I am meant to be doing, and not out earning a paycheck.  I also know that being here at home, with my children, doesn't mean there are not plentiful opportunities for fun, joy, fulfillment or creativity so I am working to find them!  A favorite quote of mine from who knows where, is "Every woman is an artist, and her home is her canvas"  And to me, it's not just about home decorating, it's about creating a beautiful life inside your home.  We discussed this at church yesterday and I found out a woman in Relief Society with me is building a sail boat!  I think that's so awesome and inspiring!  Finally, I'm sure you've seen this but I can watch it over and over again and it's on topic so watch it again!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Everyone loves babies...

So I know Mila is going to become wildly famous while she sleeps. Her mom creates photo shoots during her naps (she tries to imagine her dreams and capture them) and puts them on her blog, Mila's Daydreams.  I'm hooked! 
I love the beautiful things some people create! Click HERE to see the rest. 

*just another great thing I found on Design Mom.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I saw this cute menu planner idea on How About Orange from Ollibird and I love it!  You can get it free by clicking HERE.  She suggests framing it under glass and then writing on it each week with a dry erase marker- so cute I might actually do it!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Kids Wall Art with the Cricut

I've been wanting to do this post for a long time- it's so simple to do and turns out really cute! 
I made this little guy for the boys room by cutting out the silhouette from the A Childs Year Cricut Cartridge and stuck it on some paisley paper and framed it.  Today I got out the Storybook Cricut Cartridge and cut out the owl and butterfly from some floral paper and stuck it on the solid purple and put them in Ribba frames from Ikea. 
Very simple and satisfying, and I can change out the shapes and papers at any time for the cost of the paper! I think it would be cute to do a big monogram too.  The girls were so excited when I hung them in their room. 
If you don't have a Cricut, (or even if you do!) head over to Little Birdie Secrets to get in the running for their Silhouette machine giveaway!  The Silhouette is like the Cricut except BETTER (gasp!) because you don't have to buy cartridges, it can cut any true type font on your computer, including all the fun shaped ones!  So if that interests you, hurry and click HERE because today is the last day to enter!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

The tea party: Mrs. B turns 9

I never posted pictures from the tea party!  It was cute if I do say so myself, Miss B and I had a lot of fun planning, cooking and setting it all up but to be honest, the real hit with the kids was the swimming!  It probably had something to do with the 100+ degree heat...
We shopped around places like Home Goods, Marshalls and Tuesday Morning for some cute tea towels and I made tea towel aprons for each of the girls.  They served two purposes, they helped to decorate the table and then went into their take home bags.  Mine were simply wide grossgrain ribbon sewed across the front of the towels, but if you wanted to be a little fancier, you could add pockets, buttons and trim or stitch or iron on a monogram.
B. is a *bit* like me when it comes to food- she wanted all of her favorite foods there!  Every day she thought of something else we should serve, but we eventually narrowed it down to cinnamon rolls, little fower and butterfly sandwiches, chocolate strawberries, cream wafers, and mini muffins.  To drink she insisted on hot chocolate (remember the heat?) and orange juice.
For the sandwiches, we did cucumbers with chive cream cheese on flowers (cut from white bread of course!)  and then turkey with cheddar cheese in butterfly shapes.  The little pink and orange flags were a clearance Martha Stewart find and since they matched our colors we just had to use them!  We grabbed a bunch of mixed roses from the grocery store at the last minute, cut them short and put them in some little empty jars I had and tied them off with hot pink ribbon.
One other idea I had that would have been really cute, would be to use a vinyl cutter (Cricut, Silhouette etc.) to decorate or personalize the tea cups!  I didn't have a collection of mis-matched pretty china patterns, and didn't want to buy more for the party so we just used my wedding china which was plain and simple, but could have been adorable with some added pink and orange flowers or something! Oh and one tip, chocloate covered strawberries are best served on cooler days- the first one that was taken slid right out of the chocolate! 

PS- Did I mention I have a 9 year old??  How and when did that happen?  I can't possibly be that old! SHE can't possibly be that old! 9 more years and she'll be a woman.  Going to college.  That cannot be possible...

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Sweet Baby Gifts

Having everyone home for summer has been keeping me busy- and now that my little baby doesn't sit still for his bottle feedings anymore I don't have an excuse to sit and get caught up on all my favorite blogs as much as I used to!  Let alone take time to update mine.  I spent most of the last two days in bed with a miserable fever, but when the meds would kick in and I felt well enough to get up, I hobbled over to my computer and did some catching up! 
I just had to share this sweet baby gift idea from Suzonne at Urban Comfort- one of my favorite creative bloggers.  She's sharing the design for the iron-on free on her blog if you want to grab it and customize some gifts for someone. 
I love the little hangers and felt slippers too!  My 5 year old was looking on with me and begged me to make her a pair! 

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Twilight Saga- B.Y.O.T.P.

When New Moon came out I was giving birth so I had to wait a few days to see it but when Eclipse came out, I really wanted the marathon experience!  I went to the movies with some sisters at 6 and laughed, sighed and swooned through Twilight, (it gets better every time!) New Moon and finally Eclipse before falling into bed this morning around 3- and it was so fun!!!  I highly reccommend it, I hope they do it again when the 4th one is released.  One suggestion, bring your own TP- with that many women in the theater at one time, they were running out by midnight. They even converted one of the Men's rooms into a Women's room!  I don't think I could have sat in line all night, but getting all caught up was the best! 
Oh Edward,
Oh Jacob,
Oh complicated, painful, monster love triangle...
I can't wait to see it again!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Tea Party Invites and kids crafting

Miss B is having a tea and swim party this year so we got to make some invitations today!  I cut the tea cup from the A Child's Year Cricut cartridge and then we stuck them to solid cardstock leaving the middle of the cup open so we could slide the "tea bag" card with the information inside.  I didn't want to make a trip to the scrapbook store so we used what I had, so they are all a little different but we love them!
It's way too hot to do anything outside except swim, so the kids have been getting creative- I went through my paper stash and collected scraps for them. Miss B wanted me to show the cards she made:
I especially like the "Be Happy" cards, how true, "be happy and you will have a better life!"  And the pop-ups too!
Miss G created some masterpieces on the Doodle Pro to share: