Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A thrifty solution

Actually, I should have named it the no cost project! I recently ordered an adorable small computer desk from Home Decorator's Collection on clearance. It was just what I needed. I had been watching Craigslist and my favorite thrift stores for months with no luck. So I bit the bullet and bought a new one.

My sweet husband put it together for me. Well after putting my keyboard in the keyboard tray I noticed that it was kind of deep and uncomfortable for typing, not good, lol. So I sat here for a minute and then the lightbulb in my head went off! I took a piece of the foam it was packed with and ran down to the basement. I found a piece of fabric in my stash to use. Then I got some spray adhesive and sprayed all sides of the foam and then smooth out the fabric on it so there were no wrinkles. Try to put it on as "flat" as possible to avoid wrinkles. Then I wrapped it on the ends like I would wrap a gift and glued it with fabri-tac, this stuff is AWESOME. And of course I took pictures to share with you!

I joined the linky parties at
My backyard Eden make it yours day
A Soft Place to land DIY day!
Come join the fun! :)

Friday, March 26, 2010

A new look and YAY blogger has new templates!!!

Just as I was on the vvveerrrggggeeeee of switching to Typepad (which is not free) or Wordpress (which is a little too technologically advanced for me) I got an email from Blogger that they have some fresh new templates to choose from in "blogger in draft". My biggest complaint with them before was the pictures were too teeny tiny for me! And the center column was too narrow. I want HUGE and VIBRANT pictures. And a nice wide posting column to achieve this. And was so EXCITED when I saw the edits for BOTH of these items!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!! Let's just say I'm a little happy over this, can you tell?

I have another frame makeover to show you. The first ones I blogged about are here . I got this oil painting at my favorite consignment shop (which I will be showcasing pretty soon so stay tuned!). It had red around the inside of the frame which was nice. But I thought hmmmmm black would be SO much better! And it is! At least I think so! Oh and the best part of this is that I got the oil "for free" because I bring things to consign to this store so I always have credit which = free shopping! To say this is fun is an understatement! Excuse the night time crappy pictures!



I'm linking up to Fingerprints on the Fridge's Feature yourself Friday linky party! :)
Stay tuned, next post I have a vote! I need your opinions! :)

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Square foot gardening

Since spring is just about here and I can't be outside playing in the dirt (yet!!). I figured I would post about it.

These pictures are from last spring. You see, I'm blonde.... which means I lost my old camera memory card. And just found it and was so excited when I did!!! So a few "old" picture posts to come........

Ok back to the gardening! If you Google " square foot gardening" you will find lots of information on this. You can meet Mel here . There are many reasons to try this, especially if this is your first garden. My top two reasons were no weeding and no rototilling! And in this format it makes it SO easy to manage.

And I'm here to tell you it ROCKS! We are still eating our frozen veggies and herbs from last years garden. And it's SO much fun for the kids to participate in!

So here is the "box" which is basically a 2x12x16 that I had them cut into 4 equal parts. Just used decking screws on the corners (3 I believe?)

Then it is filled with compost, vermiculite and peat moss, which makes it SOFT so you NEVER have to rototill (another awesome idea of Mel's!) I will admit I cheated and used a little "moo dirt" which is the actual name. It's top or potting soil with cow poop mixed in. ;)

Then it's time to put in the divider which make it a "square foot" each. We used very inexpensive tomato stakes.

I made 3 of them like Mel says to do, which is actually 12 squares in each. But one I made 9 squares so it was a little bigger for some things I knew I would need more room for.

Some of the things we grew were tomatoes, celery, squash, zucchini, strawberries, onions, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, Kale (and a few I know I'm forgetting). And TONS of herbs! Which can be washed and frozen for all year round use. I blanched some of our veggies and froze them as well. LOTS of fun and good for you too!

And last but not least my little helpers who jump at any chance to drive the tractor! They are cute aren't they?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A little randomness

It's been a busy winter. A happy one to boot. The weather is getting warmer and I know spring is around the corner. The ball is starting to roll with the house. The baby is getting bigger everyday and makes me want to just make time stand still. And yes, she is being strolled around Mema's kitchen by her brother. Doesn't every mema have a stroller inside?

Homeschooling is going very well. The first three weeks were a little trying, but we have gotten into our groove and in 8 short weeks I cannot believe what this boy has learned! I think his brother tricked me and played hookie on Monday. He woke up with a "sore throat" which sounded very suspect to me but I let him stay home. I'm a big believer in what I call "mental health" days to just chill out. However he was VERY eager to do "school" with his brother. I think he wanted to know what goes on during the day here...... here is a picture of my "sick" child. Looks pretty happy to me. I have a feeling he's going to ask me to homeschool him next year. We are looking into private school for him. But in all honesty with Kris home now, I really miss Johnny and feel like I don't get my time with him. We'll see what happens.

Here are some pictures of enjoying the warm weather and snow melting in the yard. Playing with cousins and friends. Basketball, tag, bike riding and anything outside. I love all seasons, but spring is for new beginnings to make new memories.

And some pictures of a fun Sunday at Mema and Papa's house. Playing go-fish after eating a big breakfast there. Nothing more fun than relaxing with the people you love! And we are the guests that never leave, because we had dinner there too.

Lastly, here is a picture of all of us. Of course the baby is picking her nose, LOL. But we are all looking which is a miracle!
Happy St Patrick's Day!! We are going to my sisters house for St Patty's day tradition! Hope your day is wonderful! :)

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Music in blogland.....

You know, I have thought a lot about this. I know there is much debate about music on blogs. But I have to tell you, I think some blogs become addictive from their awesome playlists. Honestly! I have been following Enjoying the small things and I purposely put this particular post in. Read Kelle's story (she will be on CNN on Tuesday) and her fantastic photography, you. will. be. blown. AWAY!!!!! I promise! And in all honesty, I have NEVER heard a more fantastic playlist on a blog. And the best part is, she changes the order almost daily. :)

But back to music. I can hear a song that will take me back to my childhood. Or one that takes me back to my wild and crazy early twenties. There is something to be said for the way music moves us. It affects us most definately. I am a lover of almost all kinds of music. So I have decided (after a nice glass of Rex Goliath Cabernet Savignon) is that I don't "judge" a blog on whether they have music or not. I have found new music I have never heard before on blogs. For instance this song Face of a Faith by Nellie McKay. It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. I couldn't find a video to post of it. But it's wonderful, I promise.

So I guess the moral to this story is. Music is good, no matter where it is. I think the music should not matter whether you are big blog or not. Be yourself, not what you think you should be.....

I'll leave you with some crappy pictures of the AWESOME Coldplay concert I went to in July that I STILL think about daily. There are better pictures on my sisters camera, but for now you'll just have to deal with the not-so-great iphone pictures. It was the most fantastic show I have ever seen and I'm SO HAPPY I splurged on second row seats!!! I bought behind the "pit" but next time (and I hope and pray there is a next time) I'm getting first row PIT! THAT Is how good it was!!! Enjoy!!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Exterior decisions.....

photo courtesy of Tara from Between you and me (on my sidebar)

Brick or stone. Hardiboard or vinyl. Shake shingles or composite. We are in the final stages of making decisions that can't be changed!!! I'm excited but also NERVOUS! I have been dreaming of this for years. I have the inside figured out in my mind and on paper. But the outside?????????? Making me NUTS! I know exteriors are pretty permanent!

One thing I do know that will be there is board and batten shutters and a cupola!!! Those two items I will not live without. Now I just need to decide on a horse or rooster on the top of that cupola!

What does your dream house look like? What would you do on the exterior? I would love to hear your ideas!

photos courtesy of googling "brick and stone exteriors"

Saturday, March 6, 2010

More goodies!

I had to share these goodies with you! I need to take some pictures of my completed island as well, coming soon! :) Anyway, the silver tray was $2 and the mirror was $3!!! Couldn't pass these cuties up! I will show there new homes soon!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Being Green

I recently did a little segment at my MOPS group on being "green". MOPS stands for Mothers of Preschoolers and these groups are all over the place. Just look it up online and find one in your area! Lots of fun and other moms to connect with. Anyway, they really seemed to enjoy it! I started cloth diapering my baby girl when she was about 8 weeks old for the simple fact that NO disposable diaper could contain her explosive poops! The cloth diapers did, and then I went on my journey..........
I changed out little things, like not buying paper napkins anymore. We have 4 sets of cloth napkins so there is enough when some are in the wash. We use them It took a little getting used to, but it's all we use now. We recycle EVERYTHING with a recycle symbol on it. It has reduced our garbage output, which we reduced the size of the garbage can we needed which in turn reduced our monthly fee, yay! If it has a symbol, it goes in the recycle bin. Cardboard, paper and all. I also keep some papers and "junk" mail for my compost pile, which is another great way to "recycle" for my garden. I also use my garbage disposal every day.

When you start your green journey, it snowballs. You want to try more and more ways to be green and save yourself time AND money. I buy a large container of castile soap and use foam soap dispensers in all the bathrooms. Fill it up about half and half, soap and water. This cuts down on the million little bottles of handsoap your buying and then recycling. Also, bar soap is by far very "green" since there is only a little paper wrapped around it, it also causes friction of cleaning your hands faster since you have to lather it on your hands from the bar. And I always use my reusable shopping bags in any store I'm in. Not just the grocery store! Use them ONCE at your grocery store and you will be hooked. Instead of bringing 100 little plastic bags in, you can fit ALL your groceries in 6-10 reusable bags!

I also have started making (and LOVING) my own laundry detergent. It's SO simple. Here is the recipe...

1 cup of Super washing soda
1 cup of Borax

1/2 bar of Kirks soap

shake well
use 1/4 cup for most large loads
some front loaders only need 2 tablespoons but use your own judgement!

I usually make 3 or 4 batches at once. If you enjoy scent you can add essential oils as well. But the kirks soap gives it such a light and clean scent, I think you will love it as is! I was skeptical at first, but was pleasantly surprised how CLEAN and clean smelling my cloths were! So I have been using it ever since! I also use Nellie's Dryer Balls and never even think about using fabric softner or sheets since!
Try it, I think you'll like it! It is VERY liberating to NEVER run out of something..... diapers, napkins, laundry detergent and etc!!!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Easy Homemade Applesauce (really!)

During one of my recent trips to a local grocery store (with awesome produce and prices!) I picked up a bag of apples. My family is more of a Granny Smith eating family. So when I saw these Red Delicious apples I knew I could make some applesauce!

The kids love to eat it just like this. But I enjoy it with my morning oatmeal. And maybe a little vanilla ice cream after dinner!! Anyway, here is the super easy recipe.

9 or 10 apples (any variety you like)
peeled (or if you like the skin, by all means leave it!) and cut up into small pieces
1 cup of water

1/2 cup of brown sugar

1 or 2 tsps of cinnamon

pour water over chopped apples, dump in brown sugar and cinnamon. Bring to a boil for a few mins and then let simmer for 10-15 mins and voila! Yummy Applesauce!
*Now we leave ours "chunky" because we like it that way. If you like yours more like jar applesauce, just mash it with a potato masher or your beaters! :)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Decorating above cabinets.....

A few days ago Nester did a post on this. Got me thinking that I should snap a few pictures of mine. I don't have a lot of "display" space in my kitchen. So above my cabinets gets rearranged and decorated often. This has been like this for quite awhile, but I'm happy with it. I love all things wire, roosters, vintage and you get the idea. In planning the new house I am dreaming of all the new decorating adventures..... SO FUN!

It has been an eventful Monday. So far I have flooded my laundry room which then went right through to the basement. Then I dropped a bowl full of eggs on my kitchen floor. I am NOT superstitious, but I would be lying if I didn't say I'm waiting for the third thing to happen. I'm almost afraid to leave the house to take the boys to piano!

Yet, here it is 3:27pm I'm still in sweats doing laundry and have no idea what's for dinner! Anyway, enjoy the tour of the cabinets! :)


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