Friday, November 18, 2011

Clothes on the cheap/extend summer clothing through the cold months

First of all, "Thank You!" to the women with little girls who outgrew sized 3t-4t and were wonderful enough to donated them!

Second of all, "Sorry" to you guys for the crappy cell pics. My camera had a dead battery.

Now on to my proud haul from today's thrifting trip:

2 shirts, skirt, and leggings

I tried to get things that coordinated with each other or things she already has. Leggings under a skirt is a cute layered look and a great way to extend summer skirts into the next season.

Here she is in the yellow and navy outfit- total=$3 for shirt, skirt, and leggings

And here is what I did with the navy one- total= $2 for navy shirt and jeans

This was really easy. I just sewed the white sleeves onto the navy one. The cupcake shirt was ruined by an encounter with Ms. Thang's make-up bag. This will extend summer shirts into the next season, or summer shirts bought off season at a cheaper prices can now be used through the winter.

Here are more clothes I got thrifting today.

1 dress, 4 leggings, 1 skirt, 1 jeans, 1 shirt

She has the perfect long sleeve shirt to go under that flowered dress, and all the leggings coordinate with other outfits she owns as well.

3 shirts, 1 capri, jeans, pants

The white w/pink flower blouse and the green capris (has polka dot cuffs, so cute) are a little large. I bought those for next year.

The black glitter jeans with embroidery hearts, not my fav, but Cutecumber loved them.

Here is what I did with two of the shirts pictured above:

Again, this was super easy. The nemo "jacket" was part of a dress set, but the bottom was torn on a swingset chain (dangerous btw!)I just cut and sewed the arms onto the other shirt. The new creation is a little large, but in a month it will probably be just right. Only cost me $1 for the shirt and $1 for the jeans.

Guess who was ready for bed? lol This time I used some old leggings that were too small and used them to create the long sleeves. $1 for the shirt, and the brown pants were already hers.

The last bit from today's trip:

pjs, 1 shirt (solid black long sleeve), 1 skirt, 2 leggings

Old Navy christmas PJS (these look like they have never been worn and might end up wrapped and opened on Christmas eve, our family tradition for Christmas PJs)

**Not pictured, princess nightgown, Cutecumber is wearing that now lol

Everything is in great, to like-new condition except both blue jeans and the brown and the black leggings which are in good-used condition. A little fading here and there, but no holes or stains.

So that is:
7 shirts
1 dress
2 jeans
1 pants
1 capris
8 leggings
2 Pjs
and 3 skirts for under $25!

I just have to make some coordinating hairbows and my girl will be stylin' like the trendiest toddlers at a fraction of the price.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Cheap Art

So the other day my Honey comes back from the Dollar Tree and hands me this "home improvement" book by Ty Pennington.

This was obviously put out pre-Extreme Makeover, way before his "move that bus!" days, when he was just some cocky hot-headed carpenter on Trading Spaces. (Man I loved that show!)
Anyway, I think Honey got it for me in hopes that I would learn to depend on him less when it comes to DIY home repairs, but what he really got me was some soft-core porn and design inspirations. You think I kid...

It's full of basic repair stuff that you can find more informative on the net, but I did enjoy seeing how he redid his own house. He really does believe in leaving things natural and recycling. Simple and nice. The style was really masculine and a modernized throw-back to the rusts, olives, and harvest golds of my early childhood. The clip art before each chapter really caught my attention and I realized that it was a great color pallet for the Scientists room.

Remember this quick collage on his wall?

It's been in need of a revamp. His awards from 1st grade are now put away and saved, and his new ones are going in frames above his desk area. That leaves his bug collection and his eye chart.

Here were a few of my favorite pages, torn (with delicate care obviously) from the book.

They aren't magazine pages, they are more durable like poster board. From left to right, "outlet" , "foot print", "peg board" , "maze", and "angry beaver" lol

I trimmed them up to fit in frames I had on hand.

As you can tell, I had to lose a lot of the image because my frames were small, and I meant to uniform them all with spray paint in matching frames, but instead I used a little metallic paint and a little black gloss. I needed to use up a few cans that were "almost empty". That is how you achieve the mix and match look of a collage though. You use what you have and you make it work. I tend to be super matchy-matchy and my OCD side had to be taped, bound, and thrown into the dark closet of my mind. lol

Then I tried a few layout options.

I wasn't feeling the green page with the foot print. It seems weird to put someone else's print on the wall, but I did love the green. I modified the "outlet" page and put it on the green background. The "cord and plug" was an image stolen from a different page in the book. I also added the shelf, dino, and expanding color ball (items laying around the scientists room) to break up all the orange.

And here it is on the wall with a few ideas thrown in by the Scientist himself. By the way, love the Hercules Hooks! (Dollar Tree)

I think it's fun! I like that he can touch all of it and interact. A lot more fun than this:

And I have to say, seeing all his robots there at the end of the bed vs how it looks now:

Really shows how much his interests have stayed in the same subjects (robots, bugs, electricity, etc..) but evolved in just a year.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, October 2, 2011


I have a bad case of Mama Bear Syndrome. I honestly don't think there is anything that provokes anger in me more than a person that hurts a child. It doesn't just hurt me, it angers me. I don't deal with anger well. I'm not really sure what to do with it since I'm usually a hard person to anger. It's not my natural response, but when it comes to my children, my first instinct is to lash out and take revenge. Every ounce of my "self" justifies this feeling, but a tiny voice that I try and "talk over" tells me it's not right. Seems that voice is God's.

But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-28).

What will my anger solve? I can not fix the people that sin against my child with my harsh words and anger. I want to "teach them a lesson" by putting them in their place, but the reality is, I CAN NOT FIX THEM. Only God, who is incomprehensibly more hurt for my child than even I am, can fix it. He can see the feelings in the hearts of not only myself and my child, but also of the one that imposed the hurt.
I taught a lesson to the kids this past week (thanks mom). Everyone has inside of them, a "good dog" and a "bad dog". They are always fighting with each other. Who will win? The one you feed.
My anger is feeding the bad dog (or bear as the case may be), giving the devil a foothold.

Lord, forgive me for reacting with anger. Your heart is hurt by these actions even more than my own. Only you have the ability to change a person, and my words will fall on deaf ears. Please help me stay calm and wise. Help me say the right things to my child. Help me as I try and show her YOUR way of dealing with these things through my example.
I pray that ******** heart is open to you and she is forever changed by your forgiveness and love. She doesn't need Mother Bear, she needs you. Be with my child through the process. Help me protect her. I am letting the anger go and placing it in your hands. Forgive me if it returns, and bare with me as I say this prayer again and again.

Thursday, September 29, 2011


My little baby is 3 years old. Yesterday was her birthday and her party is this Saturday. Let me tell you a bit about this special girl.
Cutecumber is one of a kind. Before she was born, I spent a great deal of time, daydreaming about what she would be like. I already had a very girly-girl and really boyish-boy. Would she be more like the Scientist, analytical, serious, and into dirt and bugs? Would she be more like Ms. Thang, carefree, outgoing, and easy to read?
Well, she was her own little person right from the start. She came into this world with a bang, and kept a sour puss on her face for 3 straight days! As each year goes by, her personality traits start to stand out from her typical age characteristics.
Cutecumber is a nurturer. She soothes anyone and anything, from grasshopper boo-boos to teenage tears. If the scientist frowns when he realizes his turtle is no longer trapped in the "home-made habitat" in the back yard, Cutecumber kneels beside him, arm around his shoulders, and tells him it's going to be ok. If she notices a nick on my leg from shaving, or even a large freckle on the back of my arm, I am treated with a q-tip of meds (lotion) and a band-aid, with meticulous care and gentleness.
She only opens up to people she knows. Unlike her brother and sister, who try to make friends with every person in line at the grocery store, Cutecumber greets even the friendliest strangers with a low brow, and short answers. She doesn't flash her winning smile to just anyone. She saves it, like a little treasure that only her true and trusted friends can enjoy.
She does have a good dose of influence from her siblings though. She loves dinosaurs and earrings. She wears a princess dress to dig in the dirt. She'll catch a june bug and rock it to sleep. She cries when humpty dumpty falls off the wall, yet was laughing hysterically when I caught her throwing the last egg (of a full carton) onto the floor.
She has a special place in my heart, being my only planned baby. The one that opened up a new level of love for me. We were a family, so wonderful, that we purposefully expanded. She is a symbol to me, the final layer of the greatest thing I've ever created. The sealant, making everything shiny and long lasting. The cherry on top of a perfect sundae. She's my last baby, the final chapter in my book of motherhood. I'm more mature this go-round. I have more patience and knowledge, and knowing she is my last, she gets more of my undivided attention as she reaches a new milestone and I soak it all in, remembering each detail of how it feels to have a child asleep in my arms, or "5 little Monkeys jumping on the bed" on repeat in the van.
We are all so very much in love with her. She has each and every one of us by the heart string, like a handful of balloons, and we couldn't have place them in better hands. She's gentle, kindhearted, compassionate, and places each of our hearts in their own little bed at night, singing to them softly, kissing them good night one by one, and trying her best to mend any broken pieces. She's a special one, my little girl.

Thursday, September 22, 2011


It's a hard thing for me to process really. It's not like it snuck up on me, she's been "growing up" since the day she was born, but here she is 14 years old today and I just can not believe it. She's going to Homecoming tomorrow. HOMECOMING! How can this be?

But I know it's true. Lately she has really shown me her maturity and I'm forced to realize that my baby girl is growing up. Recently an event took place that really tested my role as her mother and although she still needs me, my role has become one of guidance more than enforcement. She is still *only 14 and I am still right behind her because she isn't capable of protecting herself from some dangers, but she is her own person now, and she represents that person well, and so mature on many levels.

She CHOSE to take harder courses this year. She dropped a favorite (drama) for Academic Challenges. She skipped another elective choice to be in AVID, a program that helps you develop study skills, and prepares you for college. She's active in the student council, plays the flute (and also took violin, so she can now play two instruments and read music, something I can not do!) and has the best group of friends. A far cry from her social group last year, which she opted to leave behind, although it was hard, and find friends that raise her up rather than drag her down. I just gave advice on how to put those things into action and achieve her goals, but the choices were hers.

She's healthy. Not just physically, but mentally healthy. She makes good choices and once her mind is made up, there is no stopping her. She's determined and self motivated to be better. These are not signs of a child. These are signs of an adult.
I am so proud of her. She doesn't dwell on things that would have crushed me at her age. She cries and she moves on. She's an amazing person, my daughter or not. She makes it *a little* easier to let go of the apron strings and let her experience life without me holding her hands. It's hard though, because from the moment she was conceived I vowed to protect her with my entire being and it goes against everything in my body to let her go, but it's like a child learning to ride a bike. You run along behind them, pushing and steadying, and eventually you let them go and they can do it alone! You're proud of them, but in that same instant it hits you, that they are suddenly 20 ft ahead of you, continuing in the opposite direction, not needing your push and it becomes a bitter sweet moment that you didn't expect.

That is where I am at on this 14th birthday. I am so proud of everything she has accomplished, and excited about her future goals. I'm watching her ride alone, and gasping at every wobble, wanting to put my hands back on, just in-case. I'm still there to put the band-aid on when she falls, but she is falling less and less. It's great, but bittersweet.

The bond is so different now than it was 14yrs ago. She needs me less, but understands so much more. I hold her less, but we are so much closer. My heart aches for the baby I've lost, but I wouldn't trade the 14yr old I have now for that baby again. As much as I love that little toothless, curly hair toddler, to the point it just HURTS, I love this 14yr old that much more. You lose something precious, but you gain something better. It's bittersweet.

That's being a mom. I knew about the diapers. I was warned about the messes. I expected the worrying and the drama, but the heartache of watching them grow, I just didn't know. It's hard and because I feel like indulging in the tears I feel welling up....

Monday, September 12, 2011


What a roller coaster of a day.

Woke up and the Scientist was complaining about a sore throat. No temp, no redness or swelling. I had doubts that it was real. He tends to get a bad case of the Mondays. I made him drink a bunch of water, gave him his vitamin and sent him off to class with a cough drop I knew he would spit out in less than one minute. I worried all day that I would get that call from the nurse and end up as that horrible mother that didn't believe her child was ill and sent him in to infect the whole class.

I did get a call, but not for his cough. Instead it was the mandatory call that's made when your child gets 2 warnings in class. His was for talking, and although it verified that his throat was completely fine, I had to talk to him on the phone while his teacher hovered, most likely in a silent room where my every word was heard. I pulled the: "You better straighten up from here on out and listen to your teacher. We will talk about this more at home" card. I followed through, and also talked with his teacher after school. They are a lot more strict this year and give out "warnings" at the drop of a hat, but I guess the "kindergarten mentality" has to end sometime. He'll adjust. He was sent home with a questionnaire for me to fill out and bring in during his beginning of the year assessment conference. On a day like today, I took it too literally and started stressing over my answers.
Q: What would you like us to know about your child?
I wanted to put "More than I could ever fit on this page."
Instead, I wrote that he learns best with visuals and "hands on", along with other more relevant things than his entire life's story which is what I wanted to write. lol

Around 7pm he started losing his voice.

Ms. Thang is in another state visiting with her father's grandmother. She's elderly and extremely ill. She is dying. MT went with her dad so they could basically say their goodbyes. It's been very difficult for her and I hate having to hear her so upset and not being able to hug her or see her during this hard time. I was worrying for her through most of the day as well. I was wishing she didn't have to stay and witness that, wondering if it really was a good idea after all, especially after a phone call that was basically one uninterpretable sob. I guess we all have to deal with death at some point. Still, I want her home. I'm eager to comfort her and in doing so comfort myself when I see her healing and dealing.

She was scheduled to come home on Wed. , missing 3 days of school, and I had a great time this morning going up there to explain her absence and fend the janitors off of Cutecumber. I couldn't tell if they were "a bit slow" or "a bit child-molesty" with their constant high-fiving and going on about how adorable she is. I smiled and gave her a reassuring nod, but inside I was wanting to kick them in the nuts just to be on the safe side.(Add another layer of stress knowing Ms. Thang is around these guys 5 days a week.) However, her grandmother's condition has taken a turn for the worse and the idea that MT could stay away all week, in case of a funeral on the weekend, was mentioned. Her 14th birthday party is scheduled for this Saturday and may end up being rescheduled.

Just last week she was feeling overwhelmed by the new work load at school. She's taken harder courses this year and missed an assignment that was mailed out over the summer. She had to read the most boring book in the history of mankind (Johnny Tremain) and write a paragraph about each chapter as a "journal-entry" in 3 days. No biggie, but put that on top of her regular school work (homework every night even in the class she was writing the paper for) it was a lot for her to adjust to. Great preparation for the future though. She found her stride last week, and I knew she would, but now if she ends up being a week behind, she will have to adjust all over again.

And the birthday party. I've got Ms. Thang's on Saturday (maybe) and Cutecumber's two weeks later. Ms. Thang is doing an 80s theme and our budget is tight right now. Her party is the 17th and we get paid on the 15th. I wasn't able to buy much of anything in advance. That really puts the pressure on to pull a party together for a bunch of teenage girls in just 2 days. Plus, Ms. Thang has declared it the social event of the year and has rather high expectations. I really want to make it special too, especially now that she's had such a rough week. Maybe having to push it back will be a good thing. Still, it's up in the air and that adds a layer of stress.

Cutecumber's party is the big family party. She picked Dora as her theme and I'm taking that and running with it. I've always wanted to throw a fiesta styled party and this is my chance. I've perfected my spanish rice recipe. :) All she wants is a slide. It's been slide talk 24/7 for the past 2 months. Again, I aim to please. Slides are in abundance on Craigslist! Until you want one...

Honey is working late tonight. I'm so mentally exhausted I didn't even officially make dinner. The kids had Ravioli (as in, Chef Boyardee) and I ate ...ya know I didn't even eat. Here it is 10 pm and I'm famished. I'm going to eat pb&j and watch it instantly attach to my thighs. Probably just one thigh and I'll be all muddled looking, just like my brain.

So as not to leave this on a bad note,
Thank you God, for giving me a mother and friend that helped me through today. What blessings they are.
Thank you for giving Honey a few extra hours tonight when we needed the money, and thank you for a great marriage that is strong enough to keep us together even when we must spend extra time apart.
Thank you for being with Ms. Thang when I can not, and thank you that these troubles are so very minor. <3

Saturday, September 10, 2011

From Frame To Couch

Today I found a beautiful framed embroidery piece at Helping Hands. I've always been drawn to them (especially the floral) but they are usually FILTHY and how can you clean them? Honey has terrible allergies and the dust collectors never get to come home with me.

Then I saw a fantastic idea on a blog, (don't remember it drat!) where a woman had taken the embroidery out of it's frame and turned it into a decorative pillow. WHICH CAN BE WASHED!

So after this light bulb moment, I couldn't find any more pretty pieces (of course). Some are just so ugly. I hate using that word because so much hard work went into them, but it does make me wonder if most everyone in the 70s was colorblind. It's also the type of thing that really borders on the "This should be in an old ladies house and not MY house" direction, but also gives a feeling of elegance when you decorate with such a detailed piece and the work put into each leaf and petal is beautiful and full of love. There is a story and warmth behind this type of artwork that I just can't help but appreciate.

I found the perfect combination of all those things today, hiding behind a string-and-nail art piece (that was actually made with thin copper wire on black velvet) of a horses head. Another type of tedious/meticulous art that I haven't found a fondness for quite yet. :/

I brought it home ($1!) and hung it on the wall in my kitchen for this picture, which didn't turn out that well and makes the coral colors look a little rusty orange, but it's my only before shot. It's all done on a burlap-type material.

It kind of made me pause for a minute wondering if I really wanted to take a chance of ruining it in the washing machine or taking it out of the frame because the coral colors and greens really went well with my persimmon Fiesta ware, but it was just so filthy it had to be washed either way.

Here is a closer shot of it before it was washed. Filthy but beautiful. A diamond in the rough.

It was framed really well and it took a little work to get it off (sewn tightly around a piece of particle board) but once i had it off, it was as easy as 1 2 3.

1. Take it out of the frame.

2. Throw it in the washer. I skipped the dryer and just laid it out and it was dry in 10 minutes.

3. Find some scrap fabric for the back, sew it and stuff it!


It was so exciting to see the colors when it came out of the washing machine. The corner has initials and the date '77. Thank you G. F., it's beautiful!

Ps This is my first pin on Pinterest!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Thrifting again!

I held off from all thrift shops and garage sales this summer in order to save enough to take a real vacation this year and I have no regrets, but now that school is back in session and I have Wednesdays to myself (thanks to a wonderful MIL), I was eager to get out and do some retail therapy. :)

I founds some good deals, and I'll show them to you, along with a few things I've had for awhile but never worked into a post.

1- Found this wooden shape-sorting toy at Goodwill. It's by Ryan's Room and it's really well made. All the pieces were there and in "like new" condition. It's not just your average peg-in-the-right-hole shape sorter. You have to unlock, unbutton, and open doors to find the right hole. I couldn't find it online, but did find a similar toy (less cool imo) on the Ryan's Room site. Cutecumber has some trouble with fine motor skills when it comes to puzzles and such. She knows where the pieces go, she just gives up on turning them until they fit properly. This should help to get her right on track.
Price- $1.99
Compare to Ryan's Room - $23.99

2- Brand new (still in plastic!) Scrabble game. I got this at the Salvation Army. It wasn't priced and I was a little worried it would be too much, especially since I am going to use it for cool crafting projects (how awesome is THIS?!) rather than play it. (Ok, maybe a few times until no one will play with me anymore cause I have tiger's blood and I'm always WINNING!). When I got to the register it was....
Price- $1
Compare to Walmart price- $24.99

3- Favorite find of the day! 4 scarlet red Fiestaware coffee cups. Flawless!
Price-$.59 each
Compare to Ebay- $4.88 each (can fluctuate, but ballpark)

4- Another fun Fiestaware find. A little turquoise salad plate. It has a big chip on the back but I'm using it for display only and it won't show.
Compare to Ebay- $9.99

5. I didn't get this little owl napkin holder today, but he was a thriftshop find in March @ the Salvation Army in Odessa. I covered his not-so-attractive exterior with a white gloss spray paint and he looks so cute!
Price- Under a $1

6. Awhile back I found a butter bell at Goodwill and gave it to my MIL. I've had my eye out for my own ever since and it payed off! (I even like mine more, shhh) I love my Butter bell! And to think I bought my first one, not even knowing what it was.
Paid- $1
Price on the Butter Bell Crock site (mine exactly!)- $23.96

7. I found this ceramic cow's head @ Helping Hands a few months ago and thought it would be cute to hang my apron's on. I love it! They had a matching duck @ Goodwill today, but I didn't get it. I think one animal head in the kitchen is plenty don't you? lol He has some weird orangy/brown eyes but the cashier at HH gave me a great tip. She said I could put a little fingernail polish remover on them to remove the eyes (umm eww), and then get some pretty green/blue ones at Hobby Lobby.
Paid- Under a $1
Compare to one on Etsy listed for $30

8. My toolbox that is NOT supposed to be out and this picture totally got the Scientist in trouble!

I had a really fun day out, and enjoyed the rush when I found those Fiestaware cups. I totally called my mom as soon as I put them in my cart even though I knew she was at work. I had to relieve some of that adrenalin lol.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Temporary parallysis and 3 frogs

Summer has lost it's luster. This is a video of my two youngest in our dirt yard (we are in severe drought and I'll admit we just said "screw it!", and it's down-right gross) having typical summer fun.

I know I sound like such a hick. :S But as a positive, Cutecumber is in panties! I believe I have changed my very last diaper (well, until grandchildren of course). :)

Also a little funny about me, yesterday I looked down and between my thumb and hand (that little webbed spot that attaches your thumb) was a horrible bruise. It was huge! Black and brownish-red. I felt of it and I had little to no feeling there. I started having a panic attack, wondering what I could have done or what was happening to me, thinking I must have burst something REALLY important that could warrant a trip to the ER when I realized...

I must have had a hole in my glove when I dyed my hair earlier that day.

But seriously, check it out for yourself, it has little feeling in that area. Right? (just say yes) I hope your summer has been a little more glamorous and a heck-of-a-lot cooler than mine!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Window seat (preview)

Yesterday Honey had agreed to do a project that I have been wanting to do since we moved in, putting a window seat in the playroom/tv room (which we all call the den). It's the place we spend the most time in.

He used scrap wood we had out in the shop, including some paneling and moulding. He got most of it done yesterday, but I still need to put on the bottom trim (we didn't have enough on-hand) and paint the plywood top. The project was completely FREE! Well, aside from the trim we still need to purchase. It has tons of storage. I am so pleased with it. He framed it out really well and it's better than I had envisioned. LOVE IT!

I made the cushions out of some sturdy vintage linens that my mom gave me, and did the boarder with some scraps of curtain that I trimmed from the girls room, and obviously the rainbow striped curtains that are pictured. (I think I'm going to have to go shorter on those.) I still need to stuff the other cushion. I finally got to use up the hoards of pillow stuffing I've been saving.

The pictures don't do it justice. These are phone pics, and it was night time.I know it's a bit on the "loud" side, but I when you put it in perspective to the rest of the room it seems tame.

That large art piece was commissioned by me and done by Ms. Thang. I wanted something "family" and "colorful". I found a giant (hideous) canvas at Goodwill and told her to paint over it. She was nervous to do something so large, and went simplistic. She hates it, but I like it! We call it the Cave Painting. I love that I'm the yellow figure (looking rather skinny!) and I'm taller than Honey (red) because I really am. ;)

And just to see how much it's changed, here is a picture Honey took when touring the house before we purchased it. It's a built in garage.

We definitely gave the room some life!

Hopefully I'll have the finished project to show you soon. I'm just too proud/excited to wait. Thanks Honey!

Edited to add a couple of pics with curtain hemmed higher and the other cushion done:

I think it would be so cute to add a long shelf above the TV (where the small white shelves are now) and put the globe collection there. You can see a few of them in the picture with all the toy shelving. They look so nice with the blue walls. I want a fun rug too. Any ideas on how to pull the brown of the couch and TV stand into the rest of the room? I think eventually down the line I will upholster real foam cushions and add brown piping to the edges, but the budget tells me it will be awhile!

Friday, July 29, 2011

Bleached T

I've seen some of the neatest bleach designed T-shirts in Blog-Land. Some use a bleach pen, others use a stencil and a spray bottle. Just check out Pinterest for some awesome ideas.

With school approaching I finally decided to give it a try because, well.. bleach is practically FREE and I thought it would be a really fun way to spruce up some plain shirts.

I went for the spray bottle/stencil technique and used contact paper for my stencil because again, practically FREE. There are literally hoards of the stuff in thrift shops. I happen to have some on hand, and I know they have some at the Dollar Tree.

I made a stencil on the computer, piecing together some wings from one site and a guitar from another. It's not perfect, but I knew I could smooth out the lines with the Xacto knife.

You could just find any image online and print it out. I do have a tip now, having done this, that thin lines can get a little tricky, so going bolder will probably be your better bet.

I used a spritz bottle and read that the pump (up and down) spritzers work better than the trigger spray bottles, so I emptied out one that I had (dollar tree perfume gag) and filled it with bleach. I added a little water because my bleach was the thicker splash-proof, but most say to use straight bleach. Your call.

I stuck the stencil in place and sprayed parallel to the shirt, a good distance above, letting the bleach fall onto the fabric. The reaction was fast and I could see it happening right away. I brought it in, rinsed it off in the sink and then washed it. Here it is, still damp before I put it in the drier. (I was impatient to take pics lol)

Not too bad! The shirt is stretched out a bit (old shirt) but I think I put a little life into something boring. I like the simplicity, but part of me wants to add more next time, maybe embellish with some text or with a bleach pen. I think it would have made a bigger impact had I done it in the center, but the pocket made me stick it over in the opposite corner, and I think it looks more trendy there, but I'd love to see it pop more, or go over to the pocket.

The large lighter spots were a result of bigger droplets forming on top of the contact paper and then spilling over when I lifted it. Next time I'll pat it off with a paper towel and I think that will solve the issue. You can see the thinner lines of the guitar almost disappeared, and that is why I suggest going with a bolder/thicker image.

It actually photographed really bright. The overall effect is much more subtle, and even more so now that it's been dried. I will definitely be doing this again. It was really easy and I think tweaking the process will make it that much better.

If you get your T-shirt at Michaels or Hobby Lobby and use an online coupon, this could be a super cheap project.

He loves the shirt but was forced into this photo. I now have to give my undivided attention while he explains the cat trap he just built outside. I'm being rushed this very minute!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Domo Arigato

If you've followed my blog, you know that The Scientist loooves to pick up "treasure". He is always asking me to help him make a robot out of his "precious finds", so today, while it was just us two at home ...

Here is the before, showcasing The Scientist's treasures in their "raw" form. Another man's trash...

The design is all his, and aside from a few structural changes (getting it to stand on it's own was no picnic!) and a little spray paint and glue gun help from yours truly, this creation is straight from the imagination of one (super talented if I do say so myself) 7yr old boy. I'm thinking he won't have to try so hard to talk me into helping with the next one. I LOVE IT!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011


I always say I hate drama and I do, but sometimes I find myself creating a "controlled" over-dramatic environment in my own bedroom. Usually around a particular time of the month, when I'm feeling especially vulnerable, and flawed in my own skin.

Please tell me that I'm not the only one, and you have also found yourselves sobbing crocodile tears, declaring that your husbands would be better off without you, in an attempt to get a selfish moment of undivided attention and a refresher course as to why they fell in love with you in the first place and why they continue to love you now.

It's one of those times when I make the small things seem deep, where I am the only soul tormented by demons everyone has, and I'm begging for love when I already have it. Fortunately, Honey has learned this game well, assures me and loves me for the silly girl that I am. Well, most of the time anyway. I may catch an eye roll and a sigh in there, but he humors me lol

Christina Perri catches me in that very moment, putting it into word and singing, better than I could ever explain, in Arms.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Dark secret

Lets go to the beginning....

So about a month ago, Honey and I decided to leave both the younger kids with Ms. Thang (paying her a hefty sum that really worked out well for me since she bought jewelry with most of it and that is the only thing we wear in the same size) and I went to work with him for the very first time. He's a truck driver, so I got to see some neat scenery (deer!) and ate at a little diner I never knew existed ($5 for a plate twice the size of one at Chili's) and I had. a. BLAST!

I rode in his old truck, but this is his brand new one. 120 miles on it and the plastic was still on the seats. He is in heaven!

At first it was really hard for me to let go of my everyday responsibilities. I am never without at least one of my children. I felt odd and out of my element. But soon, the excitement of riding in such a huge truck (bouncy seats on the dirt roads just like the back of a school bus), and the tingle of pride that my man can maneuver such a powerful, complicated machine (backing it up into places I wouldn't try in a car) started to divert my attention from the chores and kids I left behind me.
He has Sirius Radio and we flipped between 80s and 90s, singing what we knew, remembering where we were. I was feeling really nostalgic, and a little flirty and young. Characteristics I'd buried with motherhood and had almost forgotten were there. We talked, we laughed, and in the quiet times I did a little people watching, which was easy because I was at the perfect height to peer into each car we passed, taking guesses at where they were going, their relationships to each other, and hoping to see something I shouldn't (I'd be shocked and disgusted of course) but there wasn't anything worth mentioning lol.

I was feeling free of the children and able to do "adult" things. I am always censored around the kids. No cursing, no edgy jokes, no flamboyant flirting and for the first time in a long time I embraced the un-kid-friendly me and let a little of that trucker mentality take hold.
For those of you imagining that I was flashing my boobs at family filled minivans, getting wasted and watching porn on the TV in the back cab, or smoking cigars, skirt hiked up, with my bare feet propped up on the dashboard, you're 2/3rds wrong.

I used to be a smoker. I started smoking cigarettes around the age of 23 or so. I quit for the pregnancy and birth of my son, embarrassingly starting back up again just after he finished breast-feeding. I quit again to conceive, carry and birth Cutecumber. Now that she is two, I can say I had finally beat it. I rarely craved one (3 times a year-ish) and I hated the smell, the cost and the hold they used to have on me.

Honey smokes small cigars while he is on the road, never bringing them home. He asked if I minded that he smoked a bit of one with the window cracked open while I road with him that day. I told him to go for it and as I watched him puff on it a few times, never really having smoked a cigar, feeling uncensored with no children to see me, nostalgic with Dave Matthews telling me to Crash, an old suppressed part of me asked him to let me try a few puffs.

And I loved it.

It was completely guilt free. I knew it was a one time thing. When would I be away from the children again? I took advantage and I hiked up the knee length skirt I was wearing, showing a bit of leg that hadn't seen the sun in years, threw my bare feet up on that dash board and lived in the moment.
Honey enjoyed it as much as I did. We've become so predictable, it was fun to be someone I hadn't been in a long time. It made me think of our future, when the kids are grown and gone. I'm glad it's him that I will be with. We always have fun together, when we actually have time together. I can't wait to see who we are then.

When we came home, and Ms Thang told me how much she did NOT enjoy my outing, and the younger two told me how much they did NOT enjoy their big sister, and reality of my everyday life came flooding back, I was happy to be me again. As much as I enjoyed my time away from them, I love my time WITH them.

But a few days later, during a rough day (just found out the van AC went out, our impending vacation was on hold) I went out into the shop to look for a repair manual and spotted half of a cigar.
Just one or two puffs, to feel free like I did that day.
Then on our vacation, when the kids are asleep and it's just us two.
And now, I'm going out before the kids are up with my morning coffee, and again after lunch, and again during nap time.
I really need to quit, but I forgot how many chores and errands I can get done on the nicotine/caffeine drug combo. I'm losing weight too. It's already got it's claws in me.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Raising a Boy

Sometimes I find myself pressed to teach my son how to "be a man" because Honey is gone so much in his line of work. I also have to take a more dominate role in the discipline area and then turn around and be the arms that hug and comfort him afterward. Playing the good cop AND the bad cop can be difficult but I think I'm making it work.
I am a major influence in his life (by default) because of the amount of time I spend with him, but his father has a huge impact on him as well. I have to remind myself that my husband is teaching him important lessons even in his absence. Everyday that man goes to work, his son sees him provide for his family, putting his children and wife as a top priority. The Scientist learns that he will earn respect as head of the household, getting the best seat in the house, largest portion on his plate, and even domination of the remote control by leading his family wisely and always with their best interest in mind. He learns by example, how to keep a wife happy, complementing her on her hair if he wants a kiss and praising her cooking skills if he wants to eat again.
He also has a great role model in his grandfather whom he spends an entire day with every week, learning patience in the garden, tenderness for beloved family pets, and the encouragement to experiment and explore his interests in a blanket of praises.
In a house full of girls, he really gets an overdose of the great traits we have to offer, like compassion, affection, and an appreciation for scented candles but I think the Scientist has the perfect balance. I hope he'll be a wonderful man with a few female attributes to make him a tender husband and playful father, yet getting characteristics from the men in his life, making him strong, stable, dependable and even down right rugged. (The rugged part coming after puberty of course!)

Raising this kid and seeing him evolve from boy to man, is (and will be) one of the greatest joys of my life. I love the little baby he was, the amazing boy he is now, and I even love the man he will be. Already <3

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


I know my past few posts were sort of out of place in this blog, and I had planned on leading up to this change I feel in myself. It was posted more for me than anything and the bottom line is, I'm not exactly who I thought I'd be and I'm not at all like I used to be. I'm finally finding my niche in the world and as much as I'd like to think I'm finally who I really am, the truth is, I'm forever changing and growing and that's exactly as it should be. I'm comfortable with who I am now, but what will tomorrow bring? I've been molded by my past. It's something that fascinates me. I'm in awe of how God works in my life. I enjoy looking back and seeing all these lessons that he was teaching me, years in advance, that gave me skills and qualities I needed for today. All this for ME and I am just a needle in the haystack. I sometimes obsess over it and try to figure out what it is he wants me to know TODAY, and although I can clue in a bit, I really have no idea where he is taking me until I am there.
I often find myself at the proverbial "edge" in life and from that view point it is virtually impossible to get a look at the big picture. I've been there for awhile, overwhelmed with my duties as a wife and mom to 3, trying to fit in "me" time and confused as to how I really ended up here as nothing in my life seemed to have pointed me in that direction or trained me to do very well. It felt like I was given a gift that I didn't deserve. I was constantly in fear of messing it up and losing it. I stayed there on that edge with these fears for a long time. I've been almost paralyzed, opting to float from day to day hoping no one finds out I don't deserve what I have and praying I can keep my undeserved treasures.
As our family vacation approached, I felt a lifting of these pressures. The idea of leaving my everyday worries was enough to distract me and actually gave me a chance to take a few steps back from that intense spot on the edge.

"I'm not going to worry about that now, I'll deal with it when we get back from vacation."

This became my new favorite motto. Parts of my big picture started to come into view, things that I hadn't noticed as I stared off into the scary vastness at the edge, scared of what might happen if I slipped and let myself tumble. I let a LOT of stuff go, (things that I'd normally worry myself into a hernia about) and I'm not going to go chasing after them. Good riddance! And now that my vacation is over, not only did I take a few steps back, but I hadn't been that close to the edge at all.

(Going to the edge helped me step away from the edge lol)

I stopped hiding from God, worried he'd realize I had gifts I should have never received and instead found myself asking him "Why have you given me this husband, these children, this home, these second chances?" and it all just came to me in little doses.

My daughter chose to live with me even though she was content with her father. I didn't trick her, or seduce her with lies. I didn't bad mouth anyone to feed my selfish desire of having her here. She forgave me and she picked me. I haven't let myself accept that for fear of gloating and loosing her, but that is the honest to God truth and feels good to forgive myself and humbly accept that gift.

I feared my husband would leave me because I was like a dead weight hanging to him for dear life, silently begging God not to take him away. As I stepped back and even discussed my fears with my husband (revealing my dark secret, that I wasn't good enough for him) He let out a sigh of relief as well, revealing that he needed me just as much as I needed him. He was lost when I met him too and instead of the dead weight I thought I was, we were keeping each other afloat. 50/50 He is my gift, and I am his.

And just like that, the dark abyss beyond the "edge" was illuminated. God truly is the light. My children were given to me because I am the perfect mother for them. My husband was hand picked for me and I was hand picked for him.

With the fears gone, our vacation was MIRACULOUS despite major malfunctions.
-a/c in the van went out and when all was said and done we spent $700 of our vacation $$.
-the title transfer and tags for the camper were estimated at $70 (by us) and ended up around $200.
-We had JUST started putting more into our 401k and the paycheck was lacking.
-We got a flat tire on the way, and our spare had to be replaced asap (10mph for 30 minutes to the next town)
-We were so broke we couldn't make it home on the $$ we had in the bank.
- Not to mention when we returned home our account was frozen and emptied until Monday due to an error on the bank's behalf!

So how did we manage?
-Honey fixed the A/C during a time crunch and within our budget becoming the HERO in the eyes of his family.
-Honey was hero again when he fixed our tire (that 10mph drive was the most beautiful section on the true route 66!) and when he stopped to help an elderly couple fix their flat, the pride beaming from the scientist as he watched his father help just about brought me to tears.
-Payday was only a day away, so we stopped at the next campground ($19 a night!) and used almost all of our cash to buy two nights. It was the most beautiful spot with the prettiest mountains in the world I'd wager.

My honey got to relax and leave the camper up, watch the sun set and not have a plan for 24 hours. I've never seen him look so happy in my life.
With nothing but gas in our tank, we took a drive and saw the most amazing things on the reservation (no pictures allowed but I'll have to dedicate a post to it sometime) and it was something we would have passed up if we had the money, driving on by and shopping for souvenirs in the bigger city.
We had the best vacations of our lives. Honey even played our last $5 (payday was the next day) at a casino on the reservation and won $60, buying us all a steak dinner that night!

It's true what they say, "The best things in life are free."

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Part 3

I clung to him. I threw out the idea that I didn't need a man and I clung to him like drowning person holds a life saver. After our quick marriage, and the birth of our son, I became a sahm once again. I wanted it and I needed it. The year before had been a whirlwind and as I mentioned before, I wrote about that and dealt with it during our first year together. My only family in town (mom) moved away and I shut out all friends for fear they would ruin my new happiness with drama. I never went anywhere. My Honey became my life line. My only friend, and as dependant as that makes me sound, it was necessary. We became a family so fast, I needed to seal the bond with every minute I had available dedicated to just that. I paved the way for Ms. Thang and My Honey to see each other the way that I did and actually love each other. I helped a new sister love her new brother. I worked hard to be the glue, although I was needed a lot less than I gave.
As time went on, I regained custody of Ms. Thang, and we topped off our family with Cutecumber. My first "planned" child, expanding on purpose! Having so much happiness that we felt the need to add one more and make "us" even bigger. Finally, I felt like our family was sealed, and written in stone. We were unbreakable.

That had been my worry, my greatest fear. It had become my mind consuming task. Make sure this is forever! And although my stable, rock of a husband never doubted it, this took me over 5 years to finally accept. I had felt it all along, but doubted my heart because of a rocky past.

With this weight off of my shoulders and this job of "sealing" our family finished, I started to wonder what my role was in this family. Of course I am the Mother and the Wife, but what kind of mother and wife am I? Now that I am not needed as "glue" who exactly am I? I'm not the wife and mother I was fresh out of high school. I'm not the mess of a woman I was after that either. I had a serious identity crisis.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Part 2

Now this next segment of my life is definitely my worst years. I've written out the entire story before (in a previous blog) and I've dealt with it and moved on, but for the sake of my time line I'm going to whip through it quickly.

I fell for this guys charming lines. (A married devil in disguise) He made me feel desired and wanted. Something I hadn't felt in a very long time, and this guy had some kind of power over me. He knew how to control a woman with his charm. I'd never felt this way, and my behavior took a turn for the worst. I found myself making time with him a priority over all aspects of my life, especially after I lost custody of my daughter. There were drugs involved (only pot) but it was enough to start a roller coaster ride that only spiraled me downward. I was sleeping around, lost my job, my apt, my car and closed my family off. This lasted for about a year.

For awhile I liked the attention from men and I liked the lack of responsibility this new life required. It felt freeing. Then slowly I realized how I had trapped myself. I couldn't get out. All I knew were these people and all of them were in too deep to help me. I suddenly craved the open heart I'd boarded up closed to avoid the hurt and pain. At least then I was feeling something, rather than living in the numb. I wasn't enjoying the party anymore. I wanted a quiet life, and a friend that I could trust. I started to realize that although we called each other family because we'd shut out our real families, we were a dysfunctional one, and there wasn't a single person around me that I trusted. They'd steal from me and take everything I had to offer and I had been willing to give it to them for a fake compliment in return.

Finally, one day I had enough. (Probably answered prayer of my mother's!) and I realized I couldn't erase what I had done, but I could change who I was. I severed ties with everyone.I finally started working again. I had to start at the bottom. I washed dishes at dingy diners and worked other small jobs at little restaurants and ended up at Fuddruckers (burger joint) in the Mall. I was living with my best friend from high school and it gave me a chance to start saving up money of my own and giving me a place to visit with my daughter again. It was painful to accept what I'd done, but I pushed through it and made up my mind to be someone she could depend on.

One day, as I smoked a cigarette during a lunch break, a security truck pulled up to me and out walked a man in uniform. A mall cop. For a moment a thought I had done something wrong, but instead he asked me for a cigarette and then I recognized him. We didn't really know each other but had a few mutual friends and had met each other a few times before.

Everyday, he met me outside during my lunch break and even my manager caught on before I did.
"Somebody has a boyfriend!" he teased.

But this guy was too clean cut for me. He wore a uniform and protected things. Just a few months earlier, I was part of the group he was protecting the mall from. I was just a piece of trash trying to clean up her act.
After being in a crowd where a slap on the ass was the signal that a guy liked you, his eagerness to hear about my day or offers to drive me home seemed subtle.
That's the way My Honey worked though. He drew me in with his kindness, gentle heart, and protective qualities. He was looking for a damsel in distress. He loves to be a hero. :)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Change of pace...

I need to revisit the past to make the present more clear. You know how you look back on your life at times and realize that God was giving you important lessons along the way and suddenly it all comes together and makes since in the "now"? I'd like to make my "big picture" a little more clear because I've made a few revelations recently, so I'm going to do a quick synapse (majorly simplifying) some of my past and see where it goes. I'm probably going to share entirely too much of myself but I like to put it out there because you get more back. Feel free to ask me anything or give me advice along the way. I'd love any feed back!

I've always been strong willed, but in my teenage years I really embraced the "tough girl" persona and did everything I could to project that I was a strong woman with direction. My parents both praised me and told me how wonderful I was like good parents do (they had me young and neither completed hs) and I wanted to make them proud. I had plans to attend college and be that career oriented woman. I had a great role model in my own mother who made being a hard working single mother in previous years seem empowering, (later working for a HUGE well known company and being praised for her work and even having her ideas become protocol) I liked the idea of not needing a man for anything and I dared anyone to challenge me or my ideas. I had a big ego. I believed I was better than most other people my age and not only was I going to be "somebody" someday, I already was.
(oh the invincibility of a teenager lol)
But even unknown to me, it was all a farce. I was extremely scared to fail. So scared in fact that I started to seek out an escape. I didn't know it then, but that is exactly what I was doing. I got pregnant, and became a married mother at the age of 19. He had a future in the Navy (had already enrolled) and this would buy me plenty of time to ease into my "after high school plans". I don't think I even loved him. I loved the idea of him. He was a great guy (with endearing characteristics I now enjoy in our daughter) but we didn't have a chance because we didn't even know who we were then. We knew nothing about life. I thought I had everything planned out perfectly but something happened that I didn't expect. I looked into my baby's eyes and I completely and utterly changed who I was at that very moment. I opened my heart to real unconditional love. Love deeper than any love I had ever felt in my entire life. (It was a true gift from God and the first tiny taste of the love he feels for us.) With my heart so open, my life started to hurt. Just after my daughters birth, we moved far from friends and family to Norfolk VA. Things I could have easily "pushed through" with a closed heart, like lack of true respect and love in my marriage, started to feel like gaping bleeding stab wounds that I couldn't heal on my own. With a taste of unconditional love I had started to have a hope that I could love him and we could be happy. I started to wonder if I could make this marriage work and be a perfect little family for our daughter. But being young, happiness meant perfection and I put a lot of pressure and impossible standards on us, unknowingly pushing us further apart, and as I pushed, any love we had started to go, and as it went, any hope we had was gone. Hopelessness made us behave in ways that were not really us and we became really pathetic excuses for human beings. We separated and I went back home to TX. He followed and we had a brief reconnect, that just verified that the love was no longer there, and I moved out and got a place of my own with our daughter and that was the last of our marriage, although it took years to complete the divorce.

What did I take away from it all? I would have been better off had I never tried to open my heart up to a man. Opening your heart leads to heart ache. I lost trust in "love" and believed it was a thing they made up in books and movies. The real "fun" part was the chase the idea of your future together. In movies, it always ends at the "happily ever after" because if they continued on past the wedding day you'd find out about all the monotony, bickering, becoming bored with one another, etc...the reality after the chase is not fun and makes for a bad story. I didn't want it anymore. Marriage was not for me.

**Now in retrospect, this is not exactly what I should have taken away from the experience of my first marriage and being an adult looking back through wiser, less pained eyes, I know more about what went wrong and why. I can also remember a lot of fun and loving times that were over shadowed by pain, guilt, and hurt that was still so raw and fresh after the final split, but for me to understand why I did particular things in my life, I have to remember how I felt then and remember that I didn't know the things I know now. **

I went without a boyfriend or love interest for about a year, and if you count the last year with my husband, I had not had love or sex in roughly 2 years. We were roommates there at the end and I don't think we even spoke. I can't really remember much about the short period where we tried to make it work a second time, except were we lived and that I hated my life. I didn't miss the intimacy. I actually hated the thought of it. My ex cheated during our marriage, and although things were never perfect between us, it still shocked and hurt me immensely. I had body image issues and felt overall unattractive. I was damaged goods in the love department. This made it easy to avoid relationships for fear of rejection anyway. I devoted my time to my daughter and to work.
I was happier than I was with my ex. I enjoyed my job and I enjoyed my time at home with my daughter. It's when my ex started to take her regularly (on weekends) and I had free time after work without her there, that I started to get extremely lonely. Having moved away right out of high school, I didn't really keep in touch with many friends. However, a cousin of my ex's lived as a single mother in my apt complex and I'd been blowing her off but as I sat there bored with nothing to do, I started taking her up on her offers and we'd go hang out with her friends (guys and girls) and it was a casual party environment that I had never been a part of. (I was never a very social person and really my ex husband was my first long-term boyfriend and I met him at work.) There weren't any drugs or anything like that, just some card games and maybe a little drinking which I never participated in. She was there to snag a man, but I had zero interest in that. I might crack a joke here and there but I still stayed to myself more than anything. My friend moved back home with her mother and we started spending more time together, doing girly stuff like clothes shopping, tanning, and letting our daughters play together. I ended up being over at her mom's when a neighbor came by offering her a babysitting job. She couldn't take it, but once I heard he was needing a live in nanny (he provides food and gas money etc..) and that he would only be there a few days a month(oil field), he had shared custody with his wife so his kids were gone 2 weeks out of the month and I'd be making almost triple the amount of money I made at my current job, I gladly took the offer. It was a dream job. I got to spend every available moment with my daughter and the 3 kids I watched were fun and easy to entertain. It was like I was playing house, but in a BIG house with lots of spending money and no husband. I loved it. My daughter started to spend longer periods of time with her dad and the kids I watched also spent extended times away at their mom's place during school vacations and I found myself spending a lot of time at these little social gatherings with my ex's cousin because that was all there was to do. I still wasn't really participating in the conversations much, or having that much fun until one day I was sitting on the couch and in walked a new, extremely sexy, muscular and handsome guy that came and sat smiling, right next to me.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Organizing tips for the kitchen.

I LOVE the summer schedule! I can not express this enough. I'm caught up on sleep. My house is orderly. The kids are getting special attention and I've been PLAYING with them! Ms. Thang is still at her dads for a bit longer (she's doing 2 weeks at a time, her choice) and aside from missing her and wishing she was here too (She'd also appreciate this "new me" the most and praise me for it cause she's an awesome friend as well as daughter) I'm really living the high life and enjoying every second. Sun, sleep, and zero schedule looks really good on me lol

So, enough bragging, today the Scientist is at my ILs and Cutecumber took a long nap so I had some free time (since everything is caught up) to organize one particularly troublesome shelf in my kitchen.

The "ziplock" area.

What it holds- ziplocks, foil, wax paper, trash bags, steamer bags (for veggies), crockpot liners.

Problem- over stuffed with items falling out when I opened the door. I had to take out at least 2 items to get anything out of there.

What I did to fix this problem:

1. I am a major ziplock user. I like to keep one box of every size on hand because I use them for ev-er-y-thing. I had all these different boxes (with the cardboard flap open on each but still attached) just thrown in. If I set one on top of the other, I had to move it each time to get to the box below it. So I looked at the box and realized (duh) that I could rip off the cardboard flap and set each one on top of the other with the exposed bags to the side. Like this...

Now I've made better use of the vertical space but I don't have to move each one to get a bag from the one below it. They were obviously designed to work this way, I've just never really noticed or utilized their shape. I still have a loose box that didn't fit into my stack, but with all the newly freed space, it slides out of the way without an issue.

2. The second thing I did was put my box of crockpot liners inside of the crock pot. Now they are right where I need them and one less box piled in my cabinet. Why didn't I think of this sooner?

And lastly..
3. I put the long and awkward foil in the drawer beneath the oven which houses all my cookie sheets and other long pans that I use 90% of the foil on anyway.

I know these tips are small, but I hope they shave off a few extra minutes in the kitchen that you were using to dig for the right sized bag, clean up the avalanche that escaped your cabinet, and then trying to balance it all back inside for the next poor soul lol.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

It's going to be a fun Summer

Whipped up this quick little project today.

We made notebooks out of snack boxes. I was really surprised at how much the kids liked these. The Scientist made his a little "mood" book and is going to draw his mood everyday. Cutecumber will be using hers until there is no white paper showing. She's almost there already lol

I highly suggest the smaller sized pads because the hole punches get tiresome. The scientist was thrilled to do his Mini Oreo book but he crapped out on me during the Tangled Fruit Snacks and as I finished it my hand was getting sore. I did make them fairly thick (folding the white paper and binding the folded seams to go faster) using the box for the front and the back pieces. I used kite string to tie/bind them together and Wa-La!
Cutecumber's actually has an attached pencil.

Now for a few funnies:

Me: "What are you doing in here?"

Scientist: "Eating a cookie. You want one? It's fresh from the jar!"


Me- (cleaning the stove after Honey made breakfast): "Look at all the grease on this towel!" (I show the Scientist with a look of disgust) "That went into our bodies!"

Scientist: "Yeah but nothing looks good on a towel. If I wiped a cake on it and showed you, you wouldn't want that in your body either."


Few more pops of turquoise

Ok, I'll admit before I even start this that it's sort of a crappy picture/little content post. I'm trying to get back into the swing of it and even though I have better projects and only had early morning light to work with, I wanted to blog SOMETHING before my day really started. So I took these pictures this morning and then my day started. :S BUT I'm taking a few minutes to post after lunch. I really need to get used to this new summer schedule.

Anyhow, I've been adding more punches of turquoise into the living room and thought I'd show those here before it got to the point where I posted a picture of something in there and people would be all "Where the heck are you at in that photo?" lol

(I think everything I do in there makes a dramatic difference cause I see it everyday but really, no one probably even notices lol)

Ok, so here is the fireplace area, and you can see my new chair/reading area. I love how it's coming together. On the fireplace stoop(?) I glued a glass vase to a silver candle stick and LOVE it.

The color is off in the photo but you get the idea. The candle was at Ross and is a really pretty blue, almost and icy aqua, and it smells yummo!

I've been finding great deals on pillows here and there over the past couple of months and added those in..

I really need a better picture, but the one on the right is a chartreuse and brown silk type fabric with little embroidered flowers. The larger white has embroidered scrolling leaves in chartreuse and olive green. The blue is more on the aqua side than it appears in the photo and has a glass button in the middle. The one closest on the far left is the same blue but has a harlequin pattern lined in brown. There was also one with the popular chevron stripes you are seeing everywhere lately, but those havent grown on me yet. I think they are...well, lets just say they ain't got no aliby. :P

Again with the color being way off in this photo. I painted the two circle wall plaques and did some antiquing on them. They look really good. This picture does them zero justice. The Scientist decorated the table top for me in April and I've just left it. I really REALLY want a new table/dresser/credenza here so I'm sort of ignoring the decor and pouting until I get one. Since we are saving up for our vacation, this might take awhile, but I want the vacation more than the credenza. (We are going to the Grand Canyon in July!)

And I just had to point out that Cutecumber woke up this morning and threw on her rain boots. She was still tired and ended up falling back asleep shortly after this photo lol. Crazy kid...

Also have you ever heard that orbs in photos are ghosts or spirits? Well if that's true then Casper loves my newly painted plaques too! But I suspect some dust got in my shot. I'm a skeptical party pooper.

So that's how I've added a bit of color to keep things from being too (as my daughter says) Matchy-Matchy, but really, I'm just matching it uniformly throughout the room. I'm a matchy type of girl and I can't help it! lol

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Lamp for the Scientist

When I saw the new trend of "naked-lamp-shades" taking over the blog craft world, I knew I wanted to do one up for the Scientist. He LOVES light bulbs. He's the first one to notice when one goes out (and will tell you daily until you replace it). He is fascinated by any bulbs that stray from "ordinary" and studies each one he can get his hands on, figuring out what went wrong and why it burned out. He's always questioning why various shapes are used and wants them (begging for them more than candy) so he can test them out and do hands-on research to find out what outcome the differences will produce. It's borderline obsession, but at this point I'm still calling it a healthy interest in science. He is aptly named on this blog. lol

So with a little spray paint (in red, currently his favorite color) and a lot (more than expected) of elbow grease to rip the stained cloth from an old lamp shade...

He absolutely loves it. Yay! I found the red party bulb at Walmart (they also have green, blue, and yellow) which works really well and isn't overpowering through the "naked" shade.

It was as easy as it looks, except taking a bit more muscle than you'd think to get the cloth off of the shade. Whatever glue was used was doing it's job extremely well lol. My only tip is to roll up a piece of paper (into a tube) and insert it into the socket (where the bulb goes) so as not to mess up any of the electrical working parts. I didn't prime it, and it's holding up really well. You know he's touching it more than necessary lol.

The shade, lamp, and red spray paint were all on hand. At just under $5 for the bulb I've got a really happy kiddo who thinks he has the coolest mom eva! :)

Friday, May 27, 2011


I just love this pic of the Scientist. Two minutes into Summer Vacation and his face says it all.

We've only been home for about an hour and my hands already smell like coconut-y sunscreen goodness.

Here is my little froggy getting her skin sun kissed!

Ms. Thang headed off to her dad's right after school, but I do have this picture she took on the phone of her and her English teacher (a fav) before she says goodbye to 7th and hello to 8th.

Beautiful! Does her charisma shine or what?

Yay for schedule free days and lazy mornings. Good bye rushed after school activies and hello easy going playdates at the park!

Of course this feeling will end as soon as the kids start to fight and cry with bordem, but until then, I'm soakin' it in!
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...