Thursday, May 29, 2008

Star Spangled Mason Jars

This past Friday it was our turn to host Family Fun Night. This is something that Chuck's family does one Friday a month. Each month one family takes a turn to host this event. Since it was Memorial Weekend I went with an Americana theme.

This what I used a center pieces.

The pinwheels came from the dollar store. There were eight in a pack. I planned to just use sand to hold in the pinwheels and then tie on red, white and blue ribbon. My mom surprised me with the red, white and blue stones. Thanks Mom! I thought they turned out really cute. I plan to remove the pinwheel, add a votive and candle and display a couple in my kitchen window through July 4th. I love how veritable Mason Jars are!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Puff Pastry

I have been wanting to try puff pastry after seeing it on several cooking shows. I cut stars out using one sheet. (There are two in a box.) I then sprinkled them with a cinnamon sugar mixture.


It was interesting to watch them puff up.

My plan was to use them as "shortcakes" and add strawberries and fresh whipped cream. Well, I forgot to get the whipping cream so instead I served a dip of vanilla ice cream with sliced strawberries and then used the puffed star as a garnish.


Megan thought this was the best! She keep asking for a bite of "cookie" and a "straw-b."

I will be using puff pastry again. I found that it had a flaky pie crust like taste. Next time I will try it as a main course. May fill the sheet with chicken, broccoli and cheese. Have you used puff pastry?

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sister's Swap - Bloom

I received my swap box from my sweet swap partner, Amy this weekend. It was a wonderful treat to pull in the drive and see a box waiting for me.




My box included a copy of Southern Lady magazine. I have only had time to glance through this. I can't wait to sit down with a glass of sweet tea and have the pleasure of reading this. A devotional book along with cute post it page tags. Great making all of those words of encouragement! A mini clip board and the cutest flip flop notepad. I am a list maker so I will use this often.

There was a package of seeds for a butterfly garden, along with gardening gloves and a hand fork. Megan has already claimed the "glubes" as her own. After I am done gardening I can hit the tub with cream puffs, apple blossom bubble bath (which smells wonderful!) and two bars of soap. A great way to end a busy day!

No worries about this package being late. There were more important things for Amy to worry about. I am so grateful that all is well with you Amy and Baby T!


I want to thank Monica and Carrie again for all their hard work putting these swaps together!




Wednesday, May 21, 2008

A Full Plate

Just wanted to pop in to let you know that all is well here. My plate is just very full! Now, I am not complaining. I am still adjusting to taking care of the extra littles. My house is suffering so I am trying to get caught up on some chores and to work out a new homekeeping schedule.

Once a month we get together with Chuck's family and rotate homes. It is our turn to host Family Fun Night this Friday. I am busy planning the menu, making my shopping list and making sure I have enough chairs and tables. I will post pictures next week to let you know how everything turns out.

On top of all of this fun I decided to start potty training Megan this week. Yes, I think I might need my head examined!

Have a great day and if you don't hear from me this week I will be around next week.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Time To Bloom

I spent my Saturday working outside. I was able to accomplish one of my favorite task... planting flowers! I thought I would give you a little tour.

The front of our house faces north so the area near the house is fairly shady. I have hostas planted up next to house.


We live in a 1950's ranch so we have high windows in the bedrooms. To spice the windows up Chuck made window boxes. I have planted the boxes on the front of the house with impatients.


I have several peonies planted at the back of the house. They are full of blooms and should flower very soon. I can't wait!


Here is my little helper. She thinks it is neat to water the flowers. Let's hope she still feels that way at the end of the season!


I have two planters of pink petunias hanging off of my back porch. They greet you each time you walk onto the back porch and the bonus is that I can view them from my kitchen window.



Tucked in with my peonies is this little wagon.


I have four identical planters on my back porch. I planted the same thing in each container.


On the west side of the house there are two garage windows. Each window has a window box planted with petunias. Our neighbors are able to eat breakfast and gaze out their kitchen window and see these flowers. They thank us each year for planting them.


In the front landscaping I placed the wishing well planter Chuck made for me. As you step onto the sidewalk it is one of the first things you see.


As you can tell I still have some work to do. I need to touch up paint on the wishing well, the window boxes on the garage and the mailbox is in deperate need of being replaced. We have a new one so I am sure that will be taken care of soon. I will be sure to post later when everything is in full swing. I hope you enjoyed your peek at some of my flower gardens!



Friday, May 16, 2008

Kindergarten Graduation

We had the privilege of attending my nieces Kindergarten graduation. Megan spent some time before the ceremony "reading" the Bible with Daddy.


The ceremony was so sweet! They started out by entering the sanctuary sing "This Little Light of Mine." Megan was singing along... it was so cute! It was a fast moving program with many songs. Thank goodness because we were worried about taking Megan. She had a great time clapping and when a song would end she would say "more."

Lauren had a speaking part in the program and did a fantastic job. Her favorite food is marshmallows, her favorite part of the Bible is the crucifixion of Jesus and she wants to be a police girl when she grows up. I was a very proud aunt!


Congratulations Lauren. We love you!



Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Clearing Clutter

I don't know about the rest of you but I am always fighting the clutter battle. I have two areas that seem to be my hot spots.

One is the my book and magazine basket that sits beside the love seat. I seem to never have enough time to get through all of my magazines and am always wanting to look through a cookbook or two.


I looked through all of the magazines and clipped the things I wanted for future reference. I got rid of lots of catalogs and only keep the most resent issue of those I love.


Another problem area is the kitchen counter. This is not only my problem. It seems to be the drop off zone for everyone. This picture is mild compared to how it looks sometimes. I have really been trying to keep up on this area.


I clipped my coupons, put my note cards away, put my last craft project in a safe place and filled out a stack of deposit envelopes. I like to have these filled out to save time. It is much more convenient to just have to fill out the amount. I also cleaned the corn so that it is ready to cook.


I don't know about you, but I always feel so much better when things are in order. Now if I can only keep it this way!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Paper Mache Boxes

I have been looking for things to decorate our bathroom. I have been scouring websites, magazines and catalogs and have found some ideas. Since I am trying to do this for as little cost as possible I have decided to get crafty!

So far I have completed one project. I bought three stacking paper mache boxes.


This is what I did with them:

I painted the larger one black and then sanded it a little to make it look somewhat distressed. The middle box I decoupaged on some scrapbook paper. I love the handwriting on this paper. I thought it looked like an old letter you might have seen in your grandmothers keepsakes. The top box I painted a color that I pulled out of the fabric I am using. I decided to make it a solid coljor since you could not see much of that box.

I then tied all of the boxes together with a scrap of the curtain fabric and tied on a star. I decided that writing "Simplify" on the star would be perfect since I am always striving to make my life more simple.



Monday, May 12, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

I hope that everyone had a fantastic Mother's Day. Mine was great! Megan sleep in until after 8. Yes! When I walked into the kitchen there was a vase full of tulips. My fave! Laying on the table was wonderful artwork featuring my favorite artist.



Daddy gets an A+ for creativity. It is currently hanging on the side of frig. Now all I need to figure out what to do to preserve this masterpiece.

Chuck made us a pancake breakfast, cleaned up the kitchen and gave Megan a bath. Wow, I felt very pampered!

While Megan napped I was able to work on some craft projects. I am trying hard to get some things complete so that I can decorate the bathroom. My goal is to have it complete before the end of the month.

Hope everyone has a great Monday!

Friday, May 09, 2008

Change

Change is on the horizon in my home. On Saturday my sister-in-law called and said she was in the area and asked if she could stop by. She had something she wanted to talk about. Ought oh... she never just stops by.

My step-mother-in-law has been watching my niece and nephew two days a week and I was keeping them on Wednesday. Step-mother-in law decided she no longer wants to watch the kids. She wanted them put in daycare. She even went so far as to find a daycare center and thought because she was going to pay for it that it would be so. Hello... not your children, not your decision!

To make a long story short... my sister-in-law and brother-in-law decided that they did not want their kids in a daycare center. Starting on Tuesday I will be keeping the kids four days instead of my normal one day. This is not something that I had planned on doing. Having three kids two and under is lots of work!

Chuck and I talked about it and decided to give it a try. The extra money will help us with some financial goals and the kids really are good.

I am sure that there will be some adjustment in the first couple of weeks. I will need to find a schedule that allows me balance meeting the needs of my family and home and the needs of the kids. I am a little anxious about this but I keep telling myself that I can do this, I can do this, I can do this!

So if my post are sporadic you will know why! I will keep you posted as I work through this new schedule.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Woman of Worth

Monica has been doing a series called A crafter's walk through Proverbs 31. I decided to give her Woman of Worth project a try.

Here is my version:

I did make a few changes. Monica sewed her velum to the scrapbook paper. I love the way the stitching looks. Since I don't have a sewing machine I used ribbon to frame out the wording.

I also bought a discounted black frame instead of painting one. I looked for a thrifted frame but could not find one that I liked.

I plan to give this to my mother-in-law for Mother's Day. Thanks Monica for the inspiration!

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Trash to Treasure: Watering Can


I made this "watering can" using an empty shampoo bottle I had for our carpet cleaner. It was so easy to make. I cleaned the label off of the bottle and rinsed the bottle out really well. I then spray painted it black and painted on a pot of what are suppose to be sunflowers sitting in a pitcher. I think it turned out pretty well since I am no artist!

I wish I could claim this wonderful idea as my own, but I can't. I found the idea here. Be sure to check out Leslie's version. She used a larger laundry detergent bottle and she has a great talent with a paint brush.

I love the idea of taking something that I have lying around and making it into something usable!

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

10 Things I Love:

1. Smell of fresh rain

2. Fresh mown grass

3. Line dried sheets

4. Laughter of children

5. Homegrown green beans

6. Canning jars

7. Porch swings

8. Homemade items

9. Cold glass of sweet tea

10. And last but not least, my little family!

Monday, May 05, 2008

Happy Monday!

I hope that everyone had a wonderful weekend! Our weekend actually started out on Thursday. Sunday was our 7th anniversary. All I wanted was a 4 day weekend to just be together so Chuck took off Thursday and Friday was his scheduled day off.

Thursday we ended up running around all day. I do my main shopping once a month so it was nice to have hubby along for that. It is quite a task and I am always happy once it is done. I was very tired by the time we retired for the evening.

Friday I woke up with a sore throat. Not fun! I pushed on hoping that it would go away. I even ended up taking a nap that afternoon. That is very rare for me. That evening we had dinner out with my parents.

On Saturday I worked on a couple of craft projects. Neither one is finished yet. I hope to get them wrapped up this week and to share them with you. As the day wore on I started to feel worse. By the time I went to bed I felt horrible!

Sunday we had plans to celebrate our anniversary, but because I was feeling bad they didn't happen. My wonderful husband ran out to get breakfast for us from here. It was delishious! I ended up heading back to bed and I hate to admit this... I sleep until noon. I was shocked myself.

We headed to my parents to celebrate my nieces 5th birthday last night. Kayla was so funny as she was opening her gifts! As always mom made a wonderful meal. The leftovers see sent home will be very tasty tonight!

I plan to take it easy today and get rid of this crud I picked up. I hope everyone had a wonderful weekend.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Ice Cream!

Last night we hurried up and ate dinner so we could head out for 31 Cent Scoop Night at Baskin Robbins. It was from 5-10 and we wanted to get there early and beat the crowd. We arrived about 5:30 and they were already doing a booming business.

Megan thoroughly enjoyed her strawberry ice cream!


It's not often a family can go out for dessert and spend under $2.00!