Saturday, May 30, 2009

Sea Salt Scrub

Don't you just love the sea salt scrub stuff you can get at Bath and Body? I do and it's been ages since I've had any of it too. I found a recipe for homemade sea salt scrub and I'm pretty impressed with it. I even had a pretty jar with a somewhat air tight lid to store it in. Next on my list to make is a deodorant stick. It's different enough from the last deodorant I made that I want to try it and you don't have to use your fingertips to apply it either.

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Monday, May 25, 2009


We did it. We finished our kitchen yesterday. Whew, it wasn't all that bad it was just a lot, a ton, an extreme amount of trim work but really not that bad. We stretched it over two weekends. The first weekend was for the screaming yellow, the second one for the french country blue.

I can honestly say I'm in love with the kitchen now. The yellow by it's self was slowly growing on me, but now that the blue is thrown in, well all I can say is I've finally gotten the french kitchen I've always wanted, sniff, sniff.

Like the wall hanging? My BFF Erin has a large, gorgeous version of the plate wall hanging and when I came across the small, cheap version I picked it up too. I asked her permission for copycatting her before I hung it up, cause it was 'hers first'. Maybe she'll post a pic of her amazing big one. Thanks for being a real secure friend and letting me copy your great eye for wall hangings!! Doesn't the blue plate go so very well with the french country blue on the wall?!?!

I'm just glad it's done. On to Mackenzie's room next weekend. Hot pink, with one black and one grey horizontal stripe here we come!!!!
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A good use for cereal boxes?

My hubby was complaining about the amount of garbage here lately and it's only because I've been cleaning some stuff out. He was asking the other night if he needed to break down some cereal boxes for the trash (we have a cereal dispenser so we don't leave the cereal in the boxes) and instead of letting my hubby break them down to crush them into the trash can I made this. An over the door clothes drying system for the load of wet laundry I had just taken out of the machine to dry.

Yes I do have a clothesline in my laundry room and yes I do use it instead of my dryer. But hey, with a family of 5 every bit of space counts right?

I'm so not going to make another one since it will only really hold about 3 pieces of wet clothing, but it was fun and took just a few minutes. Not your normal use for a cereal box either eh?
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Lip Balm and Deodorant

So this week brought with it homemade lip balm, lemon scented and Deodorant, also lemon scented. :)

The deodorant is wonderful, it made more than is in this little bottle but I poured it into a few different smaller containers because I couldn't find one big enough for all of it. Just a pea size ball, warmed between fingers does it for each pit and so far no stink!!

The lip balm I'm going to have to play with for a bit. You have to set it in the fridge to set up overnight and then you can leave it out afterwards. After it sits out an hour or two it's too soft and if it's left in the fridge it hardens too much. So I think I'm going to have to back off on the vitamin E that's in it and see if that's a quick easy fix. I'm liking it though.

Next up on my list of homemade things to make myself is a sea salt scrub, and maybe a sugar scrub, I haven't decided about that one yet.
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Saturday, May 23, 2009

A few Random things.

I love random posts. I have a few blogs I read that from time to time post just some random things thet have been floating about in their head and life. Here's mine.

1) My favorite dessert here lately is Strawberry Flowers. I'm making some today as a matter of fact. It's fight night tonight we gotta have munchies.

2) This song just makes me happy and fuzzy all over.

3) My husband and a family friend, Erika, set me up and I'm very glad they did. Looks what's on it's way to me as I type!!!! I also, love this website very very very much. :)

4) Hopefully my next small purchase for the house/me will be this wonderful invention!

5) is also one of my most favorite websites. I have a lot of things circled in their magazine for school this coming year and neat toys for the kids and myself!

6) I'm very very upset that Shurley English doesn't go past the 7th grade. :( The search begins for a new curriculum for the coming school year.

7) I've got my fingers crossed that Matt Hughes wins tonight! Though he's gorgesous he's no GSP!!

8) I missed the train on this the first time, but now it's restocked and I just ordered some. I hope this will stop the kids from complaining about how spicy their toothpaste is.

9) Since my kitchen is now screaming yellow I've been searching online for ways to make it really work for me. I so want to have this kitchen but toned down just a little and with some blue as well.

10) I can't wait to try this recipe. If it works I'm passing it on to my mom who is a junkie for this stuff!!! Its a great website too.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Oh Yummm!

This is one of our family's favorite summer recipes. It's especially great when the price of Broccoli and Cauliflower aren't outrageous. It doesn't look very appealing but it's incredibly tasty and healthy too. A great way to get in raw veggies. It's also better the next day!Here's the recipe.

Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad

1 head of Broccoli, chopped
1 head of Cauliflower, chopped
1 sm onion chopped as fine as possible
1/2 can/jar of bacon bits
1 cup of Mayo (Light, Fat Free works as well)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vinegar

Mix Mayo, sugar, vinegar in a small dish with a whisk until blended. Set aside.

Combine onion, bacon bits, cauliflower, broccoli in bowl and pour mayo mixture over veggies. Stir and let sit refrigerator for a few hours before serving. Stir frequently as it sits in the fridge.
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Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Sunflowers and scarfs.

Oh wow. We painted our kitchen this past weekend. Well the part above the wains coating!! And man did I pick out a bright, slap you in the eyes color. It's called Sunflower. I was going for more melted butter. How did I get so far off track? The little kids and my hubby love it. Myself and Mackenzie aren't so sure yet. We're going to paint the lower half of the walls this weekend, a french blue color and maybe that'll help tone it down some, or bring it all together...Hmmm I'm not so sure about that.

But hey, my vintage scarf curtain looks really good against it doesn't it? A lot better than it did against that Ivy wallpaper...ewww!
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My newest goody!

My mom was visiting this past weekend and before she left she and Mackenzie took off and went and picked me up a freezer. Yeah. Now all my bulk cooking can be stored in one place and not overtake my refrigerator freezer. I'm so excited. I made a Kroger run and was able to pick up some stockpile freezer stuff that I haven't been able to do so far.

Thanks mom and dad. You're the best and you know it. I'll continue to update all on my freezer stockpile!
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Bug Repellent #2

This one was way cheaper and somewhat easier to make. It's one Lemon sliced a thin as you can possible get it. 2 Tbs or one twig of Rosemary, crushed. Sprinkle the Rosemary on top of the lemon slices in a bowl. Bring 4 cups of water almost to a boil. Pour over the lemons and Rosemary and cover with a clean cloth/towel. Set aside so the mixture can steep for 15 hours.

Once the steeping process is finished, strain the liquid through cheesecloth to remove the lemon slices and rosemary. Place in a jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator. Transfer 4-6 oz of this liquid into a spray bottle at a time and apply as needed. It's safe for pets and kids, as long as you don't spray in the face.

My Isaac has a tendency to get bite on the face so I spray some of this one my hands and rub it on his forehead and cheeks. So far it seems to work really well.
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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Look at my pretty!

I have totally, without any thought or caution falling in love with vintage scarfs and aprons. Go figure. So while on vacation I spent a lot of time cruising the Internet looking at vintage this and vintage that. And then I found it, a vintage black and white apron that I want so much I can almost reach around to tie it behind my back. So I added it to my wish list. Then I found another 'oh my gosh' thing and couldn't help myself but get it. A vintage scarf curtain. I know it's not some people's taste and it may not even be pretty to some but I'm not sure what it is or why it happened but it was just one of those things that I said 'yep, I'll be your new owner!' Can you just imagine how even better it's going to look when we get the kitchen painted a nice melted butter color? I just can't wait.

Look how pretty it is blowing in the breeze over my kitchen sink. (Don't look at my dirty dishes, I've been busy!)

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Bug Repellent

Yuck, it's that time of year again in Alabama where the bugs come out in full force and the city literally drives spray trucks through neighborhoods at night and sprays BUG SPRAY throughout the town!!!! If sounds like an ice scraper truck if you're from Virginia and maybe a snow/leaf blower. Does anyone else think that this is crazy or just me? I'm mean I hope it cuts down on the bugs but I swear every time I hear that thing coming I have an argument in my mind that goes something like this:

"Did you hear that? They're spraying for bugs again!"
"Crap, hold your breath until it goes by."
"But you're in the house. A lot of repellent just isn't going to come through the house."
"Yeah but what if it does. Should I go cover the kid's faces with a damp cloth just in case?"
"You're being silly. Just let the dang truck pass and forget about it."
"But, it's BUG SPRAY...and I don't want to be breathing that in."

By now the bug spray truck has long since gone!

"You'll be fine. You've dealt with this for 6 years it's not hurt you yet."
"Yeah, but what if I end up with a funky disease that no one has heard about and it takes 40 years for them to name it and it's all because of the bug spray I inhale every summer? That kinda stuff does happen!"
"Are you for real? A funky disease for real?"

So the conversation goes on and on for a few more minutes. Since I can't stop the city of Huntsville I can try and stop the bugs in my yard that seem to flock to myself and Isaac whenever we step through the door; and I do mean flock!!!

So here's one homemade batch of Insect/Flea Repellent I made up yesterday. It's got tons of oils in it and smells minty.

I'm making up a different batch of Repellent tonight just to see which one works better. The essential oil's one is mega expensive of course. But the one I hope to make tonight cost only $4 for the ingredients and it makes a lot more than the few ounces pictured. So stay tuned.
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Homemade Dish Washing Detergent

My sister in green and I have been in search of a dish washing detergent (liquid, powder, gel I don't care) that we could make ourselves and would really work. So far I've had no luck until I ran across this little recipe with citric acid.

Oh citric acid. I just love that stuff. It's wonderful fizzy power just makes me warm inside thinking about it. So I had to give this a try.

Well, by golly it worked. My dishes came out looking great, just as if I had used a store brand, full of chemical detergent. :)

Here's the recipe for any and all who may be interested.

Homemade Dish Washing Powder
1 cup Borax
1/2 cup washing soda
1/2 cup Baking soda
1/2 cup citric acid
3 TBS grated soap (Castle/Dr. Bonner's soap is preferred. If you can't find that get Ivory soap)
20 drops of essential oil (optional)

Mix it all together, use up to 2 TBS max for each load. Keep in mind, that the detergent you buy at a store has a filler in it so that it doesn't clump so you don't have to fill up to the fill line in your dishwasher.)

Store in a glass container and if it gets clumpy and starts sticking to the sides, just scrap it off and use it.
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Tuesday, May 12, 2009

What am I juggling?

So I guess while I was on vacation with my folks and sister I had too much time to think of different kinds of projects and things to get into to add more stuff on my plate.
I assembled my HydroEarthBox so that was one I added and crossed off pretty quickly.
I've been looking online for clotheslines to put against the side of our house. I've found a few I like but haven't decided it.
We need to repaint in the kitchen, bathroom and my bedroom. I know what colors I want to do I just need to buy the paint and get on with it.
Kenzie's room now needs new carpet because of the leak that molded the carpet....ewwww.
Our storage shed needs to be cleaned out and reorganized but where in the world am I going to find 3 weeks to set aside and dedicate to that project...I break out in a sweet just thinking about it.
I need to start researching and ordering the kids school books for next year, speaking of which I still need to enter in a few months worth of grades into the grade book right now!!!
Plus I still have to keep up with the checkbook, cook, bulk cook, clean, grocery shop, laundry (which takes a little longer since we're not using the dryer anymore) and coupon and watch after the kids,...ok I have to stop listing things, I'm starting to get a little overwhelmed. So far I've got all of my balls somewhat up in the air....somewhat....yeah I'll stick to that phrase. :)

Saturday, May 9, 2009

My EarthBox

I have very few memories of helping in my family's garden and friends gardens growing up. There was one summer, my god-mother who babysat my sister and I for a good while piled us in her car and took us to her mother's house to help dig up potatos. My sister and I didn't really help all that much but I remember doing some of it and liking it.

I usually helped mom plant flowers around the house as well. Then, when I first moved out of my mom and dad's house I remember planting a Rose of Sharon tree/bush right off of my porch...boy did that thing grow fast and boy did I love it. My gramma had given me a cut of one of her bushes. I wish I had though enough ahead to bring some to Alabama with me.

So needless to say. I don't mind getting my hands dirty and planting bushes or gardens. I'm not into the flower flower type stuff but I like Hostas and greenery that comes back from year to year.

So I wanted to plant some kind of garden here in Alabama, but let's face it, the soil/earth down here is horrible and I didn't want to spend a fortune on getting the soil up to standards to grow something in it plus I don't want to be in heat 3-4 days out of the week taking care of the thing. So guess what I discovered? EARTHBOXES or HydroEarthBoxes.

I just made my own, it was easy to make, but did take time to put it all together. I took pictures of every step and have all the instructions on each picture in the below slideshow. I totally recommend it to anyone who wants to grow their own garden but doesn't have time or want all the work that goes into having one. I can't wait for the tomatoes and cucumbers...yummmm.

Side Note If you do decide to make one of these HydroEarthBoxes, please let me know. I have tons and tons of the Garden Lime and Fertilizer left over. I'd be happy to bag some up and pass it to you the next time I see you Leisha. (yeah, I have a feeling this is going to be right up your alley)

If you double click on the slideshow it should take you to the web ablum the pics were uploaded to so you can enlarge the picture and read all of the instructions. Or just email me and I can send it to you that way. :)

Walgreens Deals!

The family and I were on vacation the first part of this week so my Walgreen's deals aren't as great as they usually are mainly because a lot of the sale items were just gone with no more to restock the shelves. But I was still proud of what I was able to find and get. All of the stuff on the right I got (including tax) for $5.45. The Neutrogena Eye Shadow was Buy One Get One Free AND I had a $3 off coupon for 2 Neutrogena products. :) And batteries, usually Energizer batteries by themselves are almost 5 bucks. I'm happy. Can't wait for the paper tomorrow so I can get my deals earlier in the week so I'm not looking at empty shelves again.
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CVS Deals this week

Wow! Did I make out like a bandit this week at CVS on shampoo that
I got all 7 bottles of BIG NAME BRAND shampoos (well the Pantene is conditioner cause sometimes my hair is dry!) for a little over $7. I hate I can't give you the exact total but I much have tossed my receipt. So for a little over $7 (including tax) my family is set for shampoo for....ummm....a very long time because I have like 6 other bottles of shampoo stashed under the bathroom sink. :) Maybe I can stop stockpiling shampoo now?
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Thursday, May 7, 2009

Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies part 1

So our vacation wasn't just to Virginia this year. Matt got to finally go on vacation with us again so we were hoping to maybe add something to the trip for all of us. Turns out Gatlinburg is almost halfway for us and my parents and sister. So Thursday night we all met up at a hotel to crash so we could hit the Aquarium Friday morning. Here's some great shots of our time at the Aquarium.

There are Parana and some shots of the first of the Aquarium.

Here we have a flounder, some sharks and a tank full of fish that decided to swim to the top of the tank as my family and I rounded the corner. It was beautiful to watch.
The below pictures had to have been one of the best parts of the entire Aquarium. You stepped onto something like a flat escalator and it took you underneath a tunnel of nothing but fish, sharks, sawtooth sharks, etc. I love the picture of Mackenzie and my sister touching the top of the tunnel with the shark right over head. The ride (no matter how slow it was) went on for a good while and it was amazing.

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Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies part 2

We really lucked out in planning our trip to the Aquarium. Seems the mermaids from Florida were going to be there the same weekend for 3 shows a day. The picture of Isaac and Evan Grace was taken during the show. :) It was so beautiful to watch and well worth the cramped seating conditions.
More fun with family at the Aquarium. Evan Grace's favorite part was pushing the inside parts of a fish and hearing the voice come over a loud speaker to tell her what it's job was in the fish. The funny part was they spoke gruff and slang like sailors. Isaac's favorite part was the Secret Access room that you had to scan your hand print in to find out important facts about the fish in the adjoining tanks.
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Wonder Works

Ok, so we didn't go to the WonderWorks Museum but now that I've seen the building I really really want to take the kids. It's kinda like Sci-Quest in Huntsville, the hands on science learning stuff. I took these pics while driving, yes I know, not so safe but I just held the camera behind my head and hit the shutter button. That's not so dangerous. The kids loved driving by this upside down building on the way to the aquarium.

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Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Nap Time

Use to nap time was lights out, covers on and the kids would actually sleep for a bit and wake up ready for a few more hours of family time. Now nap time for Isaac is strip down to your undies, cover up with pillows only on moms bed and watch SpongeBob for an hour. We now call it quiet time.

Evan Grace realized that she could see the TV in mom's room from her doorway. She nap time for her is now, pillows and blanket in the doorway and all the babies in her room (and a few stuffed animals from time to time) lined up across the hallway so they can watch SpongeBob as well.

At least they are quiet for an hour out of the day.
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Monday, May 4, 2009

Expired Coupons

It hurts my heart to go through my coupon folder and find expired coupons. The idea that I might have missed a sale or overlooked a deal drives me insane. That is until I discovered

This website provides a list of address for you to send all your expired coupons to. Why wouldn't you just throw them out? Did you know that military families can use any manufacture coupon that's expired for up to 6 months PAST the expiration date? So please, when you go through your coupons and instead of chucking out the ones that have expired, find an address at and help out our military families. It's a different way of going green right? :)

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Coupon Chief

So the family and I are on a kick of saving money, spending money more wisely and just being all around good stewards. Thus came my adventures of couponing (and the ability to make up the word 'couponing' as well!).

So I use printable internet coupons, manufacture coupons and store coupons. What else is there to add to that list? Electronic coupons!!!

It's not often that I buy things online mainly because I hate to pay for shipping. Sometimes I'll but a book or something for the kids that's not easy to find in local stores. So when I go online I always look for the best price for the item I want, keeping in mind that I'll have to pay more than $5 for shipping as well.

Well just made online shopping at lot cheaper and much more likely for me to shop online.

BEFORE you go shopping online or BEFORE you click the CheckOut button stop by They offer tons of codes and coupons for online store that can save you a lot of money. Some codes were for free shipping, 10% off your entire purchase just to name a few. They have codes for WalMart, Target, Amazon, BooksAMillion, Zappos, Toys R Us and many many more. This would be great if you buy birthday presents or holiday gifts online and have them shipped right to the recipient.

If you use one of their codes you can go back and leave a comment for how it worked for you, how much money you saved or just how great really is!!!!

I really wish I had known about this website a few weeks ago when my mom had sent me a E-gift card! I just know I would have gotten a much better deal if I had checked first!