Thursday, August 30, 2012

Sweet Thursdays....#2

Happy Thursday everyone!  Hope yours has started off well.  Over here, we're still getting used to the whole "back to school" routine.  We'll get there...I'm pretty sure:)  This week I thought I'd share one of my sweet yet healthy recipes.  I love the feeling of eating sweets, but knowing they're somewhat healthy for you {healthier...I should say}.  So this week I'll share my Zucchini/Apple bread recipe that I made with zuchinni that came straight from my own garden {even healthier...right???}.

Here are the ingredients needed to concoct this amazing snack:

3 eggs (beaten)
2 cups sugar ( I usually use a little less)
2 tsp vanilla extract  (I'm using homemade!)
1 cup of vegetable oil (I use 1/2 cup and 1/2 cup applesauce)
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 cups of shredded zucchini
2 apples dices up

1 cup nuts
1 cup raisins

Pre-heat the oven at 400 degrees.  In a bowl mix the eggs, the sugar, the vanilla and the oil until all combined and yields a creamy texture.  Set aside.  In another bowl, mix the flour, salt, cinnamon, baking soda and baking powder.  Add the wet mixture and stir.  Add the zucchini, apples, nuts and raisins.  Pour mixture into a greased bread pans and cook about 45 minutes or until top is golden brown.  

***You could also chose to make muffins which I opted to do.  Only change to recipe would be to cook for 20-25 minutes.***

Fresh Zucchini from our garden :)

So moist and yummy.  They make an awesome snack for work or to send the kiddos in their lunch boxes.  I always feel good about sending them as much homemade food as possible.
Happy cooking to you!

Linked to:

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

30 Days to finding your blogging voice...

Here I am at the beginning of my blogging "career" :)  {career...makes it sound so professional} haha Not so much of a writer and probably not that interesting...but I'll get there!!! :)  Nonetheless, I've enjoyed this short lived endeavour and hope to get better as time passes.  

I found this awesome blog Hip2thrift where Iuliana has started a 30 days to finding your blogging voice post.  Sounds so cool and well...I'm looking to refine my skills {or lack of...} so I thought I'd hop on the wagon and join in!  So I'm a little behind since she's already on day 4 of this great challenge.  I'll start with day 1 and work my way up....

Day 1: Childhood bedroom

I remember my room having these two wallpapers; stripes and hearts...cheesy I know but it was the 80's  and it was in style;). I must admit I was pretty licky...I had my own bathroom in my room{ which I came to enjoy during my teenage years}.  I also had the room with the balcony which I was so petrified of.  The paranoid thoughts that weent through this kids mind were pretty surreal!  "What if someone climbed on the balcony from the deck below and broke into my room through the locked slider ???". I'm telling you I was one paranoid kid!  Actually...come to think of it, I'm a prett paranoid adult ;).  A little off track here...  Back to my bedroom, I had this wooden bedroom set with the oh so awful gold hardware which again was stylish back then.  

I wasn't the barbie/doll type kid.  Me and my cousins mostly drew or just talked...we're girls we had a lot to discuss! haha

My room was definitely my haven from about 12 to 16.  I came home, went to my room to watch TV and talk on the phone hours on end, went downstairs, grabbed dinner and ate in my room.  What were my parents thinking???  I can definitely say that my children will never have a television in their room {if I ever want to see them}.  So those are all the great memories I have of my childhood bedroom.

Unfortunately I don't have any pictures to show you the "pretty" {can you hear the sarcasm???} wallpaper!

Day 2: Describe your most annoying facebook friend.

This is a harder one...I don't go on facebook all that much but I do have to admit that I HATE all the stupid {my opinion here} games; farmville and all the others I didn't bother to read!  You know when you get 100 alerts a day about something ridiculous that really has no interest whatsoever!!!  I can't really delete them from my friend list because they're family and I feel badly.  I just want the game requests and the calendar requests and all the " you were red bull girl today" alerts to STOP!!!  Ok, so I think you all got the picture right?  I don't want to hear about the games, the questionnaire you supposedly answered about me {because you really don't know me that well!}, and all the other annoying requests you may have!   Now that that's off my chest, I feel much better. haha

Day 3: Write about what you're wearing on your feet, if anything.

I have to admit this is probably the strangest thing I will have written about in my entire life.  I've written some weird stuff, but this beats it all :)  I have my laptop on my lap and I'm writing this post with nothing on my feet but my worn off black nail polish.  This is the first time that I've worn black nail polish.  I usually go for the french manicure or a flashy shade of pink.  I am in desperate need of a pedicure.  My heals are cracked and not so pretty to look at right at this moment.  Between work, the kiddos and house duties, a pedicure is pretty much the last thing I have time for.  I am not a big fan of feet to be honest with you.  I don't really like my own!   There's something about toes that just doesn't do it for me.  I've rarely seen feet and say " wow, nice feet".  I'm more the type that'll notice the crooked toes and the ugly nails.   I usually have my slippers on around the house, but love to kick them off while typing away at the computer :)

Strange writing exercise...can't believe I'm actually going to post this.  I hope this really does help better my writing skills!!!

I'm almost caught up with Iuliana...YAY!  So I'll add day 4 to this post tomorrow and then I'll just write a post per day once I'm back on track with everyone else.

Well, I'm off to sleep as 4:30am is going to come pretty quickly!!!  Good night everyone.   


Ok...I'm catching up slowly but I'll get there :) 

Day 4: What do you wish grew on trees?

I guess the first thing that comes to mind when you read this sentence is "money"!!!  Who wouldn't want that??? But in all honesty this would probably create more problems than anything else.   So once I stopped to truly think of what I'd like to grow on trees, my answer would without a doubt be health or a derivative, cures for deadly or even lifelong diseases...when I hear the horror stories of children {and adults}finding out they have either a commonly known disease or something rarely seen, my heart goes out to them.  I can't imagine what these people and their families go through.  I am thankful each and every day for the health that we have.  Alright, I do complain when my kiddos get sick, but then I see something far worse and am grateful that my children are otherwise healthy.  There can't be anything worse that being helpless to the ones you love, nothing that you can do or say to make their pain go away.  If health/cures grew on trees in the form of remedies in a pretty little instruction manual, wouldn't that be awesome???  I know, I know....this kind of thing won't happen, but for the sake of this writing exercise I'll put my thoughts on paper...or web I should say :)  Well enough with all this sad stuff, I think you get the picture.  What would you like to have grow on trees?

Day 5: Write about nature.  Use the words; hard drive, stapler, car, phone, billboard.

Nature to me, is the one place you can go to relax and recuperate .  Don't get me wrong I'm in no way, shape or form suggesting that we go camping in a tent or anything.  I like nature but not that much :)  There's something about the serenity that one can find out in the middle of the woods! {In a cabin of course}.  I think we all need a little time away from the hustle and bustle of our everyday life.  No technology; turning the phone off, leaving your computer at home {or just smash the hard drive}, parking the car and leaving it aside to just soak it all in.  I think nature and all it has to offer is definitely soothing.  Taking a stroll through the wooded path where you won't find any billboards or bright lights to distract you from your thoughts, breathing in the fresh air that's not polluted. 

With all the stress we deal with each and every day, I think there is no better place to just refuel the body.  All you need is the necessities and off you go!  The only thing you may want to bring is some paper, a sharpie and a stapler, in case someone gets lost :)  

Well, that was my expose on nature!  

Day 6: 

Monday, August 27, 2012

Spaghetti Sauce

Happy Monday!!!  With school starting today and my garden having a ton of vegetables ready...I thought yesterday was a good time to make a batch of spaghetti sauce while picking up around the house today.  What a good idea I had! I usually always have a stash of spaghetti sauce jarred for those nights where I need a quick,  go to meal.  I've been out for some time now {shame on me}!  So onto cleaning up I went, as I had to stir my simmering sauce...pretty much all afternoon :)

So for those of you interested, here's my recipe!  It's a mix between my our grandmothers recipes that I played with to make my own.   Inspired from our Quebec roots, it might be a little different from the typical American sauces.  So here are needed ingredients;

2 tbs butter
2 tbs olive oil
4 1/2 lbs ground pork 
1 big bottle V8 vegetable juice
1 (12oz) can of tomato purée
3-4 small cans of tomato paste
4 tbs ketchup
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
2 carrots diced

6 celery stalks diced
6-8 onions
2 large shallots minced
6-8 cloves of garlic minced
2 cps of mushrooms
1 tsp oregano
2-3 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp sariette spice
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp mint flakes
1-2 tsp garlic salt
4-6 bay leaves
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper ( more if you want more of a kick)
1/2 brick of firm tofu cut in small cubes
Salt and pepper to taste

So for the meat I sometimes do a combination of veal and pork or beef and pork or even deer meat. and pork.  Whatever I have on hand.  I love adding the tofu {we're not big on tofu...} because you don't really taste it, but you get all the nutrients it has to offer.

I start off with 2 tbs of butter and 2 tbs of olive oil in the bottom of my pot.  I then sweat all my veggies for about 10 minutes or until onions become translucent.  I then add all my liquid ingdients with the exception of tomato paste.  Add all spices and bring to a boil.  I then add my raw meat making sure to press the meat against the sides of the pot to avoid any lumps of meat.  I simmer my sauce for about 3 hours stirring pretty often to avoid any sticking or burning at the bottom of my pot.  1/2 hour to an hour before the sauce is ready, I add the tomato paste, mix it in well and continue simmering.

Butter and Olive oil :)

 Diced up veggies
Sweating veggies


Once done, I store in mason jars which I then boil in my pressure cooker/ canner.  It is soooo good ;). I love my spaghetti sauce.  It doesn't have too many spices but it tastes just right to us.  I hope you'll try it and let me know what you think ;). Happy cooking to you!  Hope you all have a fun "back to school" week, I know it's going to be a little hectic around here...just the way we like it!!!  

Saturday, August 25, 2012


Hi everyone!  Hope you've all had a good week, mine was a little krazy { 3 1/2 days at Disney with the kiddos and hubby}.  Trying to see as much as humanly possible in Florida's summer heat {what were we thinking????}.  We were able to make it to Epcot, Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, Hollywood Studios and Sea World.  Managed to make it to fireworks every night...and exhaust ourselves! :)

  We like to try and do as much as we can with our munchkins and I like to take a ton of pictures.  I'm all about making memories and cherishing them!  I've been trying to find the best way to keep track of our lives on a daily basis, some type of journaling.  I've tried to litterally keep a daily journal, but find that I'm not so good at writing in it on a daily basis {sigh}.  I had seen this idea on Pinterest where you have an index card for each day of the year and you write down the year and then what happened...well that hasn't worked out so well for me either as I find myself skipping quite a few days!{sigh...again} the school year begins, I thought I'd start tracking our daily lives {yet again} in another way.  I'm pretty good with our family binder and keeping track of a lot, so I figured I'd use a Daily Log sheet that I'd add to said binder.  So here is what I came up with and I'm hoping that this will do the trick!

I thought if I keep it short and sweet, then maybe...just maybe I'll get it done.  I always think that it'll be nice as the kiddos get older to remember these moments {or it could simply be used as bribe materials}!  So here is the contents of my new family binder section.

Not much here tonight, but I should make it back tomorrow {if my endless to do list actually comes to an end}.

Hope you all have a good night.  I'm going to try and catch some much needed zzzz.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Sweet Thursdays!

I thought I'd start a sweet Thursdays add a little sweetness to your week :)  So I'll be posting a new recipe for deserts evey Thursday!  I hope you enjoy!   Here we go..

"Pudding Chomeur"


1 c. pure maple syrup
1c. brown sugar
1c. boiling water
1/4 c. butter

Cake batter

1 1/2 c. flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1/4 c. butter
1c. sugar
1c. milk

Pre-heat over at 325 degrees.  Sift the flour and the baking powder in a bowl and set aside.  In a separate bowl beat the butter until creamy texture and add sugar while still beating.  Beat again until you get a creamy texture.  Alternate adding 1/4 of the flour and 1/4  of milk while mixing until all ingredients are combines.  Grease a 13 X 9 dish and pour batter.

Pour all sauce ingredients into pot and bring to a boil.  Stir well and simmer for 10 minutes or so.  Pour the hot sauce over the raw batter and cook for 45 minutes.  Here is the delicious "not so diet friendly" result you'll get!  Enjoy :)

Anything made from pure maple syrup is just delicious!  I'm lucky enough that my brother and father own a commercial size maple farm up in Quebec so I usually have a pretty unlimited supply of this great stuff year round!!!

Sweet Thursday to you all !

Delightful Order

Back To School

With school starting shortly {can you believe summer is almost over???}, there are a few things that I needed to have done.  I have to admit that I'm a little anxious for the beginning of school.  Mornings are going to be super crazy in this household!  {As if it wasn't already right?}  Well, it just might get a lot crazier!!!  With the 2 younger munchkins being dropped off at daycare by 7:15am so that I can drop my 1st grader to school for 8:05am {18-20 mins. drive to school}, it's gonna be a race for punctuality :)  I was a little overwhelmed with my back to school "to do" list!

First off, I needed to go through all the kiddos clothes and get rid of what didn't fit and put aside what could be reused.  Now that that was done, school shopping needed to happen and let me tell you IT HAPPENED and a few trips to the store later I was broke :)  I still need a few things for my little man, but the girls are set!  I was so excited to get to do some shopping in Quebec and I got a ton of things 50%-75% off.  LOVE those savings!  I'll have to come back with a few pictues of my favorite outfits!

As to shoes...I might have gone a little overboard with my oldest.  I just have this thing where I can't have her wearing shoes that don't match with her clothes {and I love clothes and shoes}!  That's just me :)  So now she has 2 new pairs of shoes, 1 new pair of sneakers and 1 new pair of boots {to wear with her skinny jeans}.  I figure that not all is lost as Amellya always wears her big sisters shoes once they don't I do get double the use out of them!  {Rationalizing my purchases, can you tell?} 
Twinkle Toes: Peekaboo - Party TimezJumping Jacks Kids - Balleto - Veronica (Toddler/Youth) 

Both the girls got these :)

Amellya'a pick!

So in an effort to be as organized as one possibly can for "back to school", I had so much on my "back to school" to do list:

1. Clean Closets     X
2. Buy new clothes   X
3. Buy new shoes     X
4. Buy School Supplies     X
5. Weekly outfit organization method     X
6. New lunch boxes
7. Labeling all school items (so glad I hadn't done it yet...just found out about name bubbles!)
8. New routine sheets for kids    X
9. New lunch menu sheet (binder)
10. Hair accessory organization

I'm slowly getting there!  I thought I'd share my newest creation {nothing to write home about}.  I just get so excited to cross something off my to do list and I get overly excited when I complete a DIY project {however little it may be}!  So in order to speed up our mornings, I thought we could pick out a weeks worth of outfits {including socks and hair accessories} and get them all ready on the hanger.  A little designing with publisher a great {borrowed} hot laminator and some scisors!  Here are my daily labels for the girls:

One for each day.  We can put elastics on the hanger, barrettes can be clipped to the little sign, headbands can be put on the hanger as well.  As for shoes, they'll be put in our entrance cubby the night before. So now when the girls wake up, all they have to do is grab the hanger and get dressed!  Sounds silly but I'm sure we'll be saving at least 5-10 minutes of choosing/complaining each morning.  Well, enough with all this creativity. lol

I still have a ton to do before we're ready...I don't know about getting mentally ready!  We're going to Disney next week with the kiddos, one last trip before school begins!  I'm hoping to get everything done today and tomorrow.  Let's see how my plan works for me :) 

Wishing you all a fantastic Thursday :)

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Living Room Decor...

Hi everyone!  Hope your day is going well and that your creative juices are flowing {that way I can find some of your inspiring ideas in blog world} lol.  As I've mentioned before I'm not very creative but I love to take an idea and run with it!  I have a few things to share today!

So my living room has been calling my name and wanting somewhat of an update.  About two years ago we decided to remove our original mantel and replace the fireplace surround with stone.  We added some "faux" wood beams to the ceiling, put a fresh coat of paint and the living room was so much prettier :)

  I'm not one to have a ton of "nick nacks" on the walls or shelves.  I have two picture frames {on either side of the fireplace} with some professional family photos {that are "oh so due" for some updated ones.  Above one of our couches I've been wanting to add something as the wall is big and seems so empty.  I've contemplated the idea of some modge podge picture canvas', and then of some frames, and then I wasn't quite sure!  I love the idea of having a picture of my babies, when they were babies, with some sort of stencil .

Here is the layout that I've been playing with and I think I just might end up with something like this!  I really do like the canvas idea.  I'm thinking the pictures should be either black and white or sepia...not sure on that one yet!

If anyone has ideas they'd want to share with me, I'm always up for a little help :)  I'm wondering if the flower arrangement shouldn't be centered above the gallery...  

Now for the DIY canvas', I had seen a great way to do them on Pinterest.  Using tissue paper to print the photos on and then just modge podge.  We'll see how that works out for me.

So here are some before pictures.  I'll have to update with afters, once I can actually get this project done!  

Remember last week during my kitchen organization I mentioned that we always have a ton of papers on the kitchen island and that it drives me nuts???  Well, while I'm working on a little DIY mail holder, I've found an item that seems to do the trick for now!

Cute basket from Home Goods.

I used a piece of thick cardboard to which I glued some pretty scrapbooking paper so that we'd have a divider to separate bills to pay from mail to open and papers to file!  So much neater than the array of papers just laying on the counter don't you think??

Hope you all have a wonderful day :)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Another fun yet unproductive weekend!

So I can't report any progress on all of my fun projects just yet! A weekend out of town for my "sudo" sisters wedding makes it totally ok. However this means that I'll have to work extra hard this week to complete at least one of my projects. I'm also a little swamped at work so we'll see how much I can realistically get done. I really wish that I could go on little or no sleep! Seriously...have you ever thought of all you could accomplish during those hours??? I'm constantly thinking that I could actually have the spotless, ultra organized home I dream of oh so often!!! Sweet dreams, unfortunately for me that's all it is! Don't you feel like time is enemy #1, always working against you? I'm always wishing I had more of it ;). Maybe I just need to get better at time management...but I prefer to think that it's the lack of time that is the problem! enough of my whining. Let's talk about some inspiring projects:)  

Ok...well first I thought I could give you a quick update on my "to-do" list I shared with you sometime last week:

1- Paint and reorganize/decorate children's playroom: NOT STARTED
2- Paint my soon to be craft/exercise room and get all organizing things in place (after I figure it all out of course!): NOT STARTED
3- Start Project Life for my 3 children (Saw this on The Sunny Side Up blog and LOVED the idea): NOT STARTED
4- Rearrange/Organize my walk in closet (which is in desperate need of a lift me up): 1/2 WAY THERE!  YAY!!!
5- Put together the art wall for my children's creative concoctions: PURCHASED MATERIALS NEEDED, NEED TO EXECUTE :)
6- Add some finishing touches to our now finished 3 season room.: NOT STARTED
7- Make some picture canvas' for our living room (you know...the ones they show on Pinterest that are so amazing!): NOT STARTED
8- Organize all of my pictures (SOOO Overdue!): 1/2 WAY THERE...
9- Make Cushion for our entrance bench: NOT STARTED
10- Redo the children's Chore Chart: NOT STARTED

Although a little disappointed in all of my not started projects I must say that #1 and #2 are out of my control for now.  I guess I need to look at is as the glass "half full" rather than "half empty"!  Glad I got some of it done :)  I'll keep bringing updates with pictures every Monday from today on...  Let's see what this week will bring.

What would you need to make doing laundry fun???  What a crazy question...would anyone ever qualify doing laundry as "fun"?  Well as daunting as the task is for me, I found a way to make it easier/better I could say.  I don't have a room designated to laundry only.  Our 1/2 bathroom on the main floor has a "closet" space for our washer and dryer.  I have to say the space is quite small and there was no room to fold clothes in there.  I had been looking for a way to make the most of that closet and stop having my clothes (folded and unfolded) hanging out on the living room couch!  So in search for an awesome way to convert this space {if you can call it that} I found a few ideas that made a whole lot of sense and that could make the said "closet" prettier!  So here are the two ideas I found in my search and thought could work in my space:

So off I went to home depot with my measures and had them cut a nice thick piece of wood that I could paint white.  Since the washer and dryer are front loads and that I had the drawers under them I had to first remove the drawers and then I could simply place my wood top of them creating a table.  Worked like a charm!!!  Above my washer and dryer I have a simple metal shelf {closet maid style}.  I found some pretty baskets at Home Goods to store some of my supplies.  I have a few baskets on top of my new folding table as well to hold "lost socks", another for the soaps I use on a daily basis and another for things I find in all pockets!  I will come back a little later with a progress picture.  There's still something that's not quite to my liking and I think it's the shelf.  I'm debating whether to change the wire shelf for a few wood shelves or...replace with top cabinets.  Time will tell.  I have to say that I love being able to fold my clothes on the table top surface.  Not only that but when the phone rings or someone shows up at the door it's much easier to shut the curtains and "hide" my mess of a laundry pile then to have it laying on the couch for all to see.  So I'd love to see what some of you have done to make your restricted laundry areas work for you.

Happy Monday to all of you!

Friday, August 10, 2012

Kitchen Organization!

Refrigerator and Freezer organization.  I have to admit that my freezer was a hot mess and it seems as though the refrigerator ends up in the same state of disorder every week.  I was getting pretty tired of "searching" for what I needed in the freezer and through pinterest and other sites, I think I've found the perfect way to keep it in order.  I love the way I can actually find things within the first 10 seconds of opening the door :)  Isn't that amazing???  Maybe not to some of you but to me it's another thing that adds pure joy to my day!  So here is my new and improved freezer.

I used some pretty little oval labels that I printed and I thought it just added a little something to my bins.

Now onto the refrigerator it was this morning.  I always have to purge it right before I head out to the groceries.  It seems there are always a ton of leftovers {always only about a bite left}.  That drives me crazy...but it's my own fault for not purging as I go.  I always hate finding a jar of ricotta cheese that's gone bad before I even open it and I'm getting better at that thanks to my meal planning, however I won't still happens!  So here is a picture of my refrigerator before I tackled it {I'm a little ashamed to show you this...}.  It has to be done to show you the progress.  I always need to wash my shelves when I'm purging I always feel good about putting food in a clean fridge!  I've used a few bins from Walmart and will be getting 2 more like the one on the right side of the after picture.



The other areas of my fridge that I hated because of the constant disorder is the fruit and vegetable drawer.  So in order to tame the craziness of these areas, I purchased these pretty containers!  LOVE them.  So now, when I get home from the groceries I prepare {wash and cut} my fruits and veggies and store them in these pretty little things.  They fit perfectly in the drawers.  What  a difference from the fruits all piled up and mixed up.  I keep my apples and pears and any other fruit or veggie that I don't cut on the side.

  It seems as though it's so much easier to keep items contained that to have them constantly falling all over the place!  So here you have it.  I'm sure many of you out there have an even better system but this has been working for me and I love the feeling of being organized...Really, is there anything more "fun"! lol

Now onto the drawers {is this organizing thing ever gonna end? I don't think so!}.  The utensils drawer was fine but the other drawer with all the big spoons, latels, spatulas, etc... was another one of my messes I just kept putting off!  It still isn't perfect but when you see the now picture you'll be able to picture the before with all this stuff just tossed in there!

No I think if I get two more of the little containers I should be good.  I'll be back at a later time with the results of this drawer.  I think I need to purge this and get rid of some of the things I probably don't use.

I'll also have to come back and so my progress with my paper mess!  It seems that all our papers/mail ends up on the island, which isn't a pretty sight!  I've found an old mail holder that had been tucked away for a few years now and I'm hoping to cut and paint and glue and make it useful again.  Will see how well that will turn out.  I'll have to share with you once that happens.  

Hope your Friday is a good one!

House of Hepworths

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Family Binder...

I'm so excited!  I've found a ton of blogs that I just love to follow.  If I just had more time!  There are so many awesome creative people out's INSANE!  Thanks to all of you sharing your wonderful ideas and a special thanks to all of you who are hosting link parties...LOVE them!   So on Monday I ranted about how much I enjoy my home binder and I know there are a bazillion blogs that have shared their binder but I thought I'd show you how I did mine.  I basically took everyone else's ideas and customized them to what I needed!  I must say it's very simple and nothing fancy but it works for me!  I'm sure I'll do some document redesigning once all my other projects are done {if that ever happens}.  So I separated my binder in the following sections;

  1. Daily to do list
  2. Weekly overview of chores (each day)
  3. Cleaning checklist
  4. Menu planning/Lunch planning on one side and my grocery list on the other
  5. My 52 weeks of cleaning chart
  6. Monthly Calendars with all events (I insert the kiddos school reminders in here)
  7. Weight Loss/Fitness Tracking
  8. Vacation Planning {Which I must say is my absolute FAVORITE)} :)
  9. Project Checklist


Again, it's amazing the feeling I have doing these lists and then having the joy of crossing things off as I go...I don't know why but it just makes the accomplishments real.  I'm really a visual person, that's all!

As you can see there are a lot of sections that have to do with cleaning...I DO love to have a clean house.  There's just something about walking around in crumbs and dirt that doesn't jive with me :) Having things laminated does give me a little of a happy tingly feeling!  I'm all about recycling, composting and trying to do things using "greener" methods.  I have a separate binder for my coupons which I love.  Having it all in one binder was just a little much for me.  I went on amazon and found these perfect coupon holders to put in the binder I found at Big Lots:

It's so much easier now that I have these to organize everything!  I have yet to find a coupon that doesn't fit!  I separated by sections: Dairy, Meats, Condiments, Snacks, and Household good.  I'll have to add a picture of the binder'll never guess what print is on it....ZEBRA! Not sure if I'm going over board with the zebra, but for right now I'm enjoying it :) To maximize my savings, I even have a spreadsheet with items I tend to purchase on a weekly basis to compare what the weekly sales have to offer.  Again, I may be going overboard, but for now I am loving the savings!  I must admit that I'm new to the couponing world so I still have much to learn.  I can't believe I use to think "$0.50 coupon...what the heck am I gonna do with that!" I'm saving over $15-20 a week just with coupons!  What an idiot I was all those years, giving stores my hard earned money to now realize I can keep some of it in my pocket!  They say "live and learn"...this to me is more like "burn money and learn"!!!  Oh well...water under the bridge, but I wised up and am now on the wagon :)  

Wishing you all a wonderful Thursday :)

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Children's Playroom

Good Morning everyone!  I keep going from one project to the you can see I am one of those people who has too many projects going at the same time!  Back to my playroom project today!  I really can't wait to get everything started.  I was able to get some pillows on sale at Walmart last week and was so excited! With 3 kiddos I needed 15 pillows.  That could've been expensive but I got each pillow for $2.50!   I love the feeling of saving money :).  I've had this project in the back of my mind for some time now.  After seeing these on Pinterest a few times I thought it would be good for the kiddos when they're watching a movie or just want to hang out on the floor.    Now I just have to find the perfect materials for each one.  They have to be different because I can already here the "MOMMY she took mine...yes it's mine because mine doesn't have a stain on it!" and want to avoid any and all arguing I can :) 

I thought these looked so cozy!  My plan is to find the perfect materials and use them to figure out the colors of the room.  You always need a starting point to focus on and help inspire the room and I think these just might be it.  I'm thinking I want something fun but nothing with character themes! I want a room that they will be able to grow with.  I've always tried to organize their playroom in sections or centers.  I love having separate areas for different activities.  Here are some of the areas I want to create:  
  1. Reading corner
  2. Dramatic play area with kitchenette, dress up clothes and their little house tent.
  3. Computer center
  4. Building center {for my little man who will certainly enjoy this}
  5. Toy center
I won't be adding an art center in this particular room just because we'll use my craft room for that.  I want to have paintings on the wall for each center.  What are some of the things you have in your playroom that make it awesome?  Any pictures you can share?  I'm looking for some great ideas I might be able to incorporate in this room.

I really want to design this room as best I can.  I know the kids will love being down there once it's ready for them.  They like being down there now, but it's just so chaotic with my exercise equipment at one end and then the toys at the other.  So there you have it!  My "to dos" for this room at this point are finding the materials for the pillow mats and the cushion for the pallet seating.  Wish me luck :)

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Pure Joy!

Hope you're all doing well this morning...  Besides the unproductive night I had last night {that's what I get for falling asleep with the kiddos!} all is dandy.  So today I'm back on track and will be tackling the remainder of my walk-in closet project!  YAY!  {don't you hear the happiness in my tone?}  So I will be posting a few pictures of the progress a little later but here are a few things that I have done and others that are in progress.

So I started off organizing my jewelry...which was much needed.  I had a disarray of mismatched cheapo depot jewelry boxes that didn't look so pretty on my shelf!  So in a long term effort to remedy this problem of mine I had found two black jewelry boxes at Walmart that I thought would work.  One was a standing box and the other horizontal...Well they worked but not quite as well as I had originally planned.  So on to Pinterest I went {told you I was hooked} in search for the next bigger and better thing...  Ta Da!  I found the perfect way to organize my necklaces.  I used a pretty black frame, removed the glass, hot glued some flexible cork to the backing, covered this cork board with some very pretty zebra print material and placed some pins.  It has worked incredibly well for me and I love the zebra print.

 Now I needed something to store my chunky bracelets that were too big for my box.  Hadn't found anything that tickled my fancy until I was cleaning out my closet!  I love when I find something I was ready to toss and turn it into something useful.   An old box I had from some facial products has now turned into my bracelet keeper!  Covered this little baby with {yet again} my fancy zebra print material and there you have it.  

Now I just need to figure something out for my earings and I'll be great.  Once that is done, I will be able to get rid of my standing black box.  Anyone interested??? :)  I've seen a few here and there with the chicken wire, the hanging wire and I have to say there's something missing.  My thought is to use a piece of leftover wood from my husband's many projects, cover it with some of the flexible cork and....drum roll...yes, some zebra print material to match the rest of my set!  Put some small nails on one row and then use a hanging wire on the next and alternate that way to create 4 rows.  Then I can  hang my earings off those.


Pretty Bin
Please accept my apologies for the photos.  I will work on their quality I promise :)


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