Saturday, April 28, 2012
1. These painted flower pots from Love Grows Wild are adorable. My husband’s classroom has lots of windows so this would be great for him to grow small flowers in.
2. Bloom Designs has created this absolutely adorable alphabet printable that I’m sure any teacher would love.
3. I am in love with these book bags from City House Studio. I want to make one for myself to take to the library!
4. Ink Me Baby One More Time created these great teacher survival boxes. My sister graduates from college next week with her teaching degree and I might have to make her one!
5. OK who doesn’t love apples and caramel? E Trenders has a great caramel cream cheese recipe that paired with an apple would make any teacher happy!
Don't forget to grab a button if you were featured!
Thursday, April 26, 2012
I don’t know about you, but if I don’t have something written down, I tend to not do it. It’s not necessarily that I forgot, but for some reason lists seem to get me motivated. It’s a great visual of everything I need to get done. Same with schedules. I have this awesome Dr. Seuss calendar in my kitchen that is full of stuff. I have my blog post schedule, my regular events and birthdays, and I have my cleaning schedule.
And that’s what we’re going to be talking about today. Because having this cleaning schedule has seriously saved my sanity. Plus because I know when I need to get certain things done, I’m not worrying so much about them the rest of the week.
So what do I do? I have 2 days set aside each week for cleaning. Monday is my biggest cleaning day. I basically clean the whole house (I have a smaller house so it’s very possible for me to do this). Tuesday is a deeper cleaning day. But on Tuesdays I only focus on one room. For instance, this past Tuesday was bathrooms. The first Tuesday of the month is the Kitchen and Dining Room. Second is the Living Room. You get the idea. Now if it’s the week of deep cleaning the bathrooms, I leave them out of my Monday cleaning. Does that make sense? No use in cleaning a room, only to go and deep clean the exact same room the very next day.
Now how do I balance this with my two kiddos? Well I generally only clean when the baby is sleeping or happily playing (laying on a blanket kicking her feet). As soon as she’s unhappy I take a break. I do try to work as quickly as I can. Fun music helps. As for my 3 year old, I enlist her help for some chores, like dusting, windows, picking up, etc. For rooms that I don’t really want her help (like my bedroom) I turn on a movie. We only watch movies a couple days a week and this is one of them.
But like I said before, I need lists to keep me motivated and remind me of what I need to do. So I created some printable lists in Picmonkey (have you checked it out yet? It rocks!). I printed and laminated them. I keep them with my cleaning supplies so they’re ready to go when I am. And since they’re laminated I can use a dry erase marker to check things off as I go. Want some for yourself? You can get them here.
Obviously, this system isn’t going to work for everyone. But it definitely works for me. I start the week off with a clean house, so the rest of the week I can focus on other things. Of course I clean things as needed (dishes, etc.) but I really don’t sweat most of the stuff.
So what’s your cleaning schedule? Do you have a system that really works for you? Share in the comments below!
Monday, April 23, 2012
1. Earth Day Pancakes from Creative Food.
2. East Coast Mommy has a list of 10 fun activities for the kids for Earth Day.
3. B.Inspired, Mama also has a great list of kid centered Earth Day activities.
4. Over at Too Much Time On My Hands she’s come up with a list of not only activities but also some great Earth Day crafts.
5. I’m excited about this one since I have a preschooler. The Happier Homemaker has great Earth Day activities just for preschoolers.
How are you celebrating Earth Day?
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Ok so by now you know that I've been slowly decorating my house. I first shared my hallway here and then my fabulous (or at least to me :) ) master bedroom. But I never feel that any room is really completely ever done. I always like adding little touches that give the room a little oomph. A lamp here, a picture there. Or by jazzing up the wall switches and outlets. Seriously! I mean, I'm sure you've seen tutorials of people mod podging their own, but there is an even easier way.
Renu by Leviton has a collection of switches, wall plates, and dimmers in 20 different designer colors. They were even featured on the DIY Network! I had lots of fun looking through collection and thinking of all the possibilities. I mean wouldn't their Onyx Black go perfectly with my bedroom:
See that light switch by the door? It's just begging to be updated to match the rest of the room. Onyx Black would seriously look great, or if I was really wanting to jazz things up I could go with Red Delicious. :)
And guess what? They even have a Twitter event coming up where you can possibly win some Home Depot gift cards! Who doesn't love that? I have some projects in mind that I would love to use them on. These events will take place:
Wednesday, April 18th 9pm EST
Thursday, April 26th 9pm EST
Wednesday, May 2nd 9pm EST
All you have to do is follow @Leviton and #Renu and participate to try and win.
If you want to check out all the colors and products they have to offer make sure you visit their Renu or check out Leviton on Facebook.
Thursday, April 12, 2012
I think every family has a few recipes in their arsenal that are staple. This taco salad is definitely one of ours. It’s easy to make and we almost always have at least most of the ingredients already in stock. Plus it’s super delicious!
- 1 lb ground beef
- 1 can corn
- 1 can kidney beans
- Ranch salad dressing
- Chili powder
- Tortilla chips
1. Brown the ground beef and drain. Add enough ranch to the meat to coat. Sprinkle about 1/2 Tbs chili powder. Mix together. Mix in corn and kidney beans. Heat through.
2. Now it’s time to start layering. Start with a layer of crushed tortilla chips (it’s ok if you don’t have Texas shaped one…not everyone can be THAT cool), then a layer of lettuce. Add some meat mixture and top with the cheese and tomatoes. I also like to drizzle a little more ranch on top. Toss together and dig in!
I always end up eating way too much when we make this, but it’s so delicious! The recipe makes enough for our family of 2 adults and a 3 year old (though she tends to eat quite a bit of this). We even have leftovers for my husband to take to work.
So what are some of your recipe staples?
Tuesday, April 10, 2012
Tonight the hubster and I are going to see the Astros play the Braves. My husband is a HUGE Braves fan so he’s pretty excited.
Cool tangent story: last night we still hadn’t received our tickets from StubHub. They called and explained that the seller was unresponsive so they offered us different tickets at no additional cost. I accepted. Then he informed me that instead of sitting in our original seats in the 300s, we would be moved to the dugout boxes in section 126! Holy cow!
Unfortunately, even though we’ve been to numerous Braves games, I have never gotten a t shirt to be able to support the team. BUT my husband did have an extra shirt that was way too big for him. So I decided to put my sewing skills to work. :)
So in order to do this you will need an oversize t shirt, thread, and your sewing machine. Oh and scissors. Here is the before:
You like my stereotypical ugly before picture? I felt it was necessary.
Ok so turn our t shirt inside out. Find a fitted tee that you like and turn it inside out. Trace the shirt. Now, this shirt was so big that my entire fitted tee, sleeves and all, fit into the torso part. So I made a tank top shape based on my fitted tee.
Sew the sides together. Make sure not to sew the arm holes together! Cut the excess off. Now fit the existing sleeves to the new fitted tee. I had to sew the bottom of the sleeve a little smaller. Then just pin how you want. I wanted cap sleeves so I pinned them that way. Sew the sleeves onto the shirt.
And that’s it! You’re done! Super super easy. And here is the after, all ready for the game.
What do you think? I’m pretty excited about it. Go Braves!
Thursday, April 5, 2012
I have to say that I think my bedroom has quickly become my new favorite room in my house. I wish I could say it always was, but until we painted I just kind of thought it was a bit ‘blah’. It was the same yucky color as the rest of the house. Plus I’ve been able to add things to make it the peaceful retreat I wanted it to be!
I was able to find some before pictures on Facebook:
And here are the afters:
The wall behind my bed is actually a shade of grey darker than the other walls. I absolutely love the color. So peaceful and calming!
Did you miss my other room reveal? You can see my hallway and its gallery wall here!
Tuesday, April 3, 2012
I’ve mentioned before that my oldest daughter is quite the girly girl. She loves all things princess and has been informing me since about last April (her birthday is in March) that she wanted a princess party. Since last year I focused specifically on Rapunzel and threw her a Tangled birthday party, I decided to go a little more traditional this year and throw her a non-Disney princess birthday party.
I had so much fun getting ready for the party. I used my friend’s Cricut cartridges a lot, but most of this would be easy to replicate on your own! We just invited a couple of my daughter’s friends to keep it low key, but we had tons of fun!
Ok, food, I believe, is one of the most important aspects of any party. For this one I decided to pull out our chocolate fountain. I felt like it would give the party a regal feeling. Plus it’s so yummy! The girls and parents all really enjoyed it. We cut up some apples, bananas, and rice krispy treats (dyed pink) for dipping. We also made some sandwiches for lunch.
Now of course we couldn’t use our fingers to dip, so I got some skewers and tops them with little crowns. I cut the crowns with my Cricut (Sweet Treats) and put them on a small circle and larger scalloped circle. I put them in a vase to make them look so fancy!
For drinks I just bought a pack of small water bottles. I hot glued a strip of pink paper and then used the same toppers as the skewers. We had a few leftover from the party and my daughter has insisted on only drinking from her princess ‘water’.
And now for the crowning moment of the food: the cupcakes! Instead of having the crowns on top I cut out some castles (Doodlecharms) and added them to some toothpicks to top the cupcakes (except of course, for the special candle cupcake).
I made some princess party hats (the party hat template can her found here) by making pink hats and then adding strips of ribbon and tulle to the top. During the party I set out a bunch of different foam stickers for the girls to decorate their hats with.
Along with the hats, we also made bracelets with ribbons and plastic beads. And we had a pinata (it may or may not have been the one and only Disney thing we had at the party)
Of course it’s not a party unless the guests go home with their own goodies! I have candy frog molds (from a Harry Potter party I attended) so I made some candy frog princes for them to take home.
I also thought it would be fun to have some princess wands. I made some tulle pom poms (tutorial to come in a couple weeks), attached them to some painted skewers, and tied ribbons around the top.
Finally, I also had some leftover glass stone magnets from her first birthday that matched well so I set those out for our little guests to take home.
I didn’t do a whole ton in terms of decorations, but I was able to set the princess mood with some pink plastic tablecloths and some pushpins. See, I draped them across our ceiling. It made our living room look so fun! Plus it was super easy.
I also had made a fun “Happy Birthday” banner. The castles are just larger versions of the ones on the cupcakes. I strung it together with some tulle for a little more whimsical look.
So what do you think? We had so much fun at the party. My daughter was very pleased with her princess party.
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