March 30, 2010

Tiny Talk Tuesday: Stress




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Setting the stage:
We were standing in the laundry/mud room getting ready to head out the door for school and work. We all had our coats and shoes on. The kids had their bookbags on and lunches in hand.

This is the conversation that took place:
Me: "Oh, Mommy forgot to pour her coffee. I'll be right back."
Gauge: "You're stressing me out!"
Me: "I'm sorry sweetie."
Gauge: "That's okay Mommy."





March 29, 2010

Working Girl's Meat

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Are you looking for a yummy crock pot recipe for your family? Look no further! This recipe is super duper easy and oh so tasty!

Ingredients:
2 1/2 lb. Stew Meat or Chuck Roast (cut in 1/2 inch cubes)
1 Can Cream Mushroom Soup
1 Can Cream of Onion Soup
1 Package Egg Noodles
Directions:
In the morning put meat, soups, and 1 can of water into a crock pot.
Cook all day on low heat.
Before serving add 1 package of egg noodles to the crock pot.
Cook 10-15 minutes or until egg noodles are tender.

Serve with a dollop of sour cream on top.
Enjoy :-)

I think that next time I make this I may buy some fresh mushrooms to add to it.
* I have been making this delicious recipe since I've been married.
I received it from my Aunt Eve at my Bridal Shower.
*




March 26, 2010

6 Days Ago....

{6} days ago was "officially" the beginning of Spring

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{4} days ago our windows were open to let the breeze in
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{2} days ago I was wearing flip flops

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Welcome to spring in Ohio....

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Where you can't pack away your winter coats and boots until May!


March 20, 2010

Homemade Powdered Laundry Detergent

In a continued effort to be more frugal and cut out unnecessary costs around our home...I decided that I would like to try my hand at making my own laundry detergent. I found the recipe on The Duggar Family's website.

To begin you will need the following items:
1 Fels-Naptha Soap Bar
1 Cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
1/2 Cup Borax
Food Processor or Chopper, Mixing Bowl, Grater, Spoon, 
and of course a super cute glass jar.
Laundry Soap Collage
Grate your soap into your mixing bowl
Fels-Naptha


On my first bar, I used the larger section of my grater. On the second bar, I used the smaller section.
Grated soap collage

Since my first bar resulted in what looked like shredded cheddar cheese...I needed to further break it down. I used the chopper attachment on my blender (because I don't have a food processor). This didn't work so well, and that's why I grated more fine on the second attempt.

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With your grated soap in your mixing bowl...add to it:
1 Cup of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda, 1/2 Cup of Borax and stir well.
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Pour your mixture into your cute jar and voila.
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This recipe yields 3 Cups of detergent (Approx. 40 loads)
For light loads, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled loads, use 2 Tablespoons.
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I tripled the recipe (could have actually quadrupled it) to fit in my jar.
My overall cost is as follows:
Jar: $5.99
Tea Scoop: $3.99
 ~~~
Fels Naptha: $1.39/bar
Borax: $2.99
Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda: $3.99
Total Spent on ingredients: $8.37

This amounts to: $2.11/40 loads or $.05 a load
You can't beat that price!!

Some notes:
* Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda can be hard to find. Don't mistake it for Baking Soda...or Arm & Hammer Detergent. It must be sodium carbonate. I found it at Meijer.
* Next time, I may try a food processor to further break down the Fels-Naptha. I did try it in my washer as it was and it dissolved fine.
* According to the Duggar's site, this recipe is for top load machines only. However...it doesn't suds up much so I can't imagine why you couldn't use it??



* UPDATE *
To further customize my scent I have been adding Scentsy Washer Whiffs to my detergent.
 I generally triple or quadruple my recipe when I make it. 


With a tripled recipe, I pour in 1/2-3/4 container of Washer Whiffs. I'm currently using French Lavender. When this batch runs out I'm using Sunkissed Citrus. You can order your own Washer Whiffs HERE.



 

March 16, 2010

I just had to share.....

some lovely new additions to my house. I purchased all of these super adorable items at a brand new store called Sonnie Sue that is in a neighboring town. (Sorry for the poor picture quality...they were all taken w/ my cell phone).

First up, we have this cute little sewing machine drawer that I am now using to hold my coffee filters, sugar, honey, etc.
drawer

Check out this adorable green picture frame that fits perfectly in Grace's bedroom. Now, I am brainstorming what to put in the middle. I'm thinking it would look cute with her name in the middle (using something like Uppercase Living).
green frame

This winter Shawn cut boards to go on top of my cabinets (usually cabinets have no solid top, so if you put things up there...you lose about 2 inches of your decorations) so I can display some of my beautiful antiques I have collected over the years. Don't you think this measuring stick star looks perfect up there?
measuring tape star

Last but certainly not least is the Pièce de résistance. This gorgeous piece caught my eye the moment I saw it on Sonnie Sue's facebook page . I really had no intention of buying it but when I saw it in person...I just knew I had to have it. Which is really weird because this color is not seen anywhere in my house. Most of my decor is very neutral/primitive style. But, I LOVE IT. I am now slowly adding some accent pieces to tie it in more. My mom found me a cute rustic metal blue bird that now sits on a shelf in that room. Next in my plan is to find a pillow on Etsy that has a hint of this color in it.

blue buffet

What do you think? Do you have antiques or pieces of furniture that you use in a non-traditional way? I would love to hear about it :-)


March 12, 2010

Become a Motivated Mom like me

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Since Shawn and I both work full time...the only time that we have to catch up on the housekeeping is either at night or on the weekends. It seemed as if by time we got home from work we were too exhausted and the task was too overwhelming. So, we would take a Saturday and clean the house from top to bottom. But, as you can imagine....that too get's old because who wants to waste their Saturday cleaning? Not me!

That's when (we) made the decision to start hiring someone to at least clean our house one day a month. This was AWESOME. It was my way of splurging. Some women get their nails done, some get their hair colored....me, I hired a cleaning lady.

Everything was going great....until I decided that we truly didn't need that luxury any more and could save that money for other things instead. I knew there had to be a way that we could make it work and do it ourselves. That's when I found the Motivated Moms Chore Planner.
It's only $8!! That's it!! I thought, well if it doesn't work out and we can't do this on our own...we're only out $8. So once we got back from our Disney Vacation, we began the Motivated Moms journey.

The Motivated Moms Chore Planner gives you 365 days of tasks to help keep you on top of your cleaning. I love that it even gives you things that you wouldn't normally think to do....like cleaning off all your light switches or the front of your dishwasher.
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Shawn has been such a blessing throughout this whole thing. He agreed in the beginning to help me with this endeavor. Each night he will pick a couple things on the list to do and I will pick a few things to do. Eventually, we would even like to involve the kids. They can earn fuzz balls for doing their share of the chores.
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I have to tell you....it's a lot of work to keep on track with my planner. But I feel so much better about my home. I love the feeling of accomplishment that it gives me.

So if you are like me and you fee like you just can't keep up, I highly recommend getting the Motivated Mom Chore Planner.  At $8 you can't lose. I also have a few friends who are doing it also. We send pictures from our phones to help keep each other accountable.

Come enter the giveaway I'm hosting over at Peanut Butter and Pickle Reviews.(Ends 3/31/10)....you could WIN a Motivated Moms Planner.

But at $8, why wait!
(If you do choose to purchase the planner, I would love if you would use one of the links that I provided here....I earn a tiny little percentage off each sale I generate) ~ Thanks :-)




* This post contains affiliate links *

March 9, 2010

On the menu:

For last night was:
Seven Layer Tortilla Pie

I cannot take credit for this recipe.....and I would tell you who could....except I don't remember where I found it. Regardless, it's delicious and super easy!

tortilla pie

Ingredients:
1 - 15 oz can of refried beans
1 - Cup salsa
2 - cloves garlic, minced (I use a garlic in a jar)
2 - Tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro (I use dried)
1 - 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
1/2 - Cup chopped tomatoes
7 - 8 in flour tortillas (I only use four - 9 in. flour tortillas)
2-3 - Cups shredded cheddar cheese
1 - Cup salsa
1/2 - Cup sour cream

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F
2. In a large bowl, combine salsa, garlic, and refried beans.
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3. In a separate bowl, mix cilantro, black beans, and tomatoes

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4. Place 1 tortilla in a deep round baking dish. Spread 3/4 cup refried bean mixture over tortilla to within 1/2 inch of the edge. Top with 1/4 cup cheese, and cover with another tortilla. Spread with 2/3 cup black bean mixture, and top with 1/4 cup cheese.


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Repeat layering until you use all but 1/4 cup of each mixture. Cover with remaining tortilla, and spread with remaining mixtures and cheese.


5. Cover with foil, and bake in preheated over for about 40 minutes.


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6. Cut into wedges and top with salsa and sour cream and Enjoy.

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Makes approx. 6 servings.





March 8, 2010

I can't believe....

That my baby girl is old enough to play basketball! This is her first year participating in our church's Hoops For Him Program. Shawn is the coach of this adorable team filled with 5 & 6 year old little girls. Don't you agree that he deserves the Great Daddy award for willing to wear pink, just for his baby girl!!
Grace and Dad Collage
The Hoops For Him program is an outreach program of our church. It is not only designed to teach basic basketball skills to the children but more importantly how they can have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ.



I was wondering how Grace's team would do. They only had 2 practices because of the horrible winter weather we have experienced this year. Grace only got one practice. She missed one while we were in Disney. Thankfully Daddy has been practicing with her in the basement.


Hoops For Him Collage

I was so proud of her! She didn't seem to be nervous or shy out there. She had her Defense down!! She knew who she was guarding and stuck to her like glue. Now we just need to practice a bit more on her offense. Our next game is this coming Saturday. GO PINK!!!!







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