Friday, January 28, 2011


All new customers
get 20 percent off at
my Etsy shop.

Take advantage now!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Strawberry Rice Crispy Treats

I have never made
Rice Crispy Treats!

I don't know the real reason why.
Maybe because
it would be a

All of the ingredients have
been in my pantry

Until today.
I decided to use
strawberry marshmallows
of the

Oh my! These are were
the best!
I am so addicted it
is dangerous.

My helper approved of
our work!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Perfectly Imperfect

Last month I decided that I need
to get our house more

This has become such a
tiresome job.

I started by making a
list of when things need to be done.

Today - wash laundry for my two little ones
and vacuum the floors.

Thats not much right?
Well, yesterday I was a bit of a
slacker procrastinator.

Tuesday was the day
to dust. 
And wipe down kitchen

So today I have to catch up.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Dry Hands - Quick Tip #12 -opps

Here we are
smack dead of winter.

The cold air sucking
all the moisture from us.

Washing hands often to prevent
Or from frequent
diaper changes...

Vitamin E skin oil!
This is some miracle stuff.

I put it on before bed when I notice
my hands are particullarly dry.
The next day they are restored.

You can get it at any drug store.

Trip to the Library

Last week I had made a trip to
 the library.

The only thing was we
 did not go in. I needed to return
 some cd's because they were already a few days late.

So I used the drop box. My DD was not
 happy with that.
She kept saying books.

Something as small as
that is rewarding.
Her requesting books is a
good start.

I guess a seed has been planted
at the tender age of 2.

We made a trip there today. The snow
didn't stop us.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Chicken Quick Tip #13

Trying to make the most of
you food budget?

Chicken breast are
At least where I get them.

I butterfly them and then slice it apart.
I then cut each half in half.

One chicken breast become

Serving of meat should be the size of a deck of cards.
I started doing it as
portion control,
but in the long run it
saves money.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Organizing Frequent Shopper Cards

I have been overwhelmed
with store cards.

Not quite sure what to do with them
how to keep track of them

Am I the only one.
Dig dig dig
dig dig dig
I know it is here some where

I found this at Target yesterday ... in the dollar section.
Holds cards perfectly.

Some of them come with a card
and tags to put on your keys -
if you dont rip them apart they
fit in here as well.

They fit in my purse wonderfully. 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Kitchen Renovation - Finale

Demolition done, dry wall up and painting took place.
I didnt paint where the cabinets were going
to be placed. Hubby insisted that
I paint the area that would
be behind the stove, which is
why there is one lonely patch.

Hubby then installed then installed the cabinets.
We purchased them from Merillat.
The flooring was then installed.
This was one thing that I got to help on.
Remember...I was pregnant and this was in about
September-ish and I was due in November.
Installing the floor was a peice of cake!

Next - my favorite part!
Installing the tile backsplash
provided by Daltile.
We had opened up our home
to display to some of the people in hubby's
office a demonstration of how to
install tiling. (Hubby is an architect)

The installation began on an inner corner.

 Oh my! I love how it turned out. One of the Starbucks in our area has the
blue version of this tile. We had almost picked that color
but went with a more
neutral palate.



Huge difference huh?!  
I wanted to share this for so long, but didnt have the
opportunity to until now.
Thanks for taking a peek. =)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Have I mentioned I have been
working hard on my Etsy store?
 I have.
Really truely have.

The transformation may be
 taking a while, but one bite at a

Take a minute and check it out.
Let me know
what you think.

Oh ... new items have been added!
Can you tell I am excited
about it?!

Free Video Rental!

Free RedBox Video rental good 1/19 and 1/20 at Meijers (if you live near one). Use coupon code  MEJER92.

Kitchen Renovation - Part 2

Before we had begun anything we had picked out the materials we were going to use. Counter tops, cabinets, backsplash and lastly paint. We had found a color that matched our glass tile backsplash perfectly. Crazy when that kind of stuff happens.

On with the demolition! We had reconfigured the kitchen to make room for some real cabinets. I was nervous about what hubby had planned, but had faith. Uhhh...yes I agreed with what he had purposed. With reluctancy.

 Here once stood - me! This is where the sink was. What a terrible sight! The entire house has hardwood floors. Beautiful hardwood floors at that. (Our bedroom floor was refinished). Oh and we found something under the cabinets when they were tore out. A peice of history from the neighborhood theater. It is a postcard that had fallen in the cabinets and lost until now. It was for movies showing back in 1945. Awesome huh?

 This was a flouesent light fixture. I know - you are asking why tear down such a beautiful thing right? Can you see the wallpaper that was under it? The olive green with orange. Blech!

The leftside is where the old door way was to the hallway/livingroom. On the right is where there was a pass through that turned to be the new entrence for the kitchen.
The corner where the door was is now cabinets. Lazy susan to be exact.

Out with the old. 

On the far left here is the new door to the exterior. Directly next to that was a window that is closed in. On the far left is the old door to the outside that was closed in. You see that? Concrete bricks? Hubby had to cut through that. Yes, it was a mess. We tried to contain it as best we could.

Honestly, I had bought this house for the kitchen. I had bought this house before I had ever met my husband. I had lived in it for 9 years before this took place. All along I knew that this house has great potential. Watch and see what becomes of it as I reveal the final phases.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Kitchen Renovation - Part 1

Back in 2008 hubby and I had done a complete renovation of our kitchen. Oh - did I mention I was pregnant during it?! The renovation began in July I believe and completed it in November. Hubby had us on a schedule of completion. The completion date was her due date. She was late! Well, we got it done before she arrived.

When I say this was an extensive renovation I am not kidding. The kitchen was gutted. to. the. studs. When I post what it looks like now you will know exactly what I mean by extensive. The house was built in 1945 - I like to think a sweet man had done it as a surprise for his wife. The date it was carved in the cement of the basement - February 15th, 1945.

The white spot on the wall - where cabinets resided.

Ewww!! That tile is sooo nasty! Looking at these pictures is just amazing. The kitchen went through such an incredible transformation! The door led to the hallway and living room. That was closed off to allow room for cabinets. 

That's me - about 5 months pregnant.
We cleared everything out to begin demolition.

There was a serious lack of cabinets. Cabinets - is that what those were really called? They lacked substance and didn't offer much.

Tomorrow demolition begins. If you have done this kind of thing before you know there is always a suprise in store.

Stay tuned!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Etsy Revamp

This week I have been working hard to
 come up with ideas to help my Etsy shop.

 I'm looking to expand it to
 more than just bows.

Sometime next week I should
 have some new things

I'm very excited
about it. Stay tuned to
see what it is!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Point System

Last week I had mentioned something about a point system that we have put in to place - again. So far it has been working to help reinforce positive behavior/choices with my stepson. He actually had asked/wanted us to do it again. This was prompted by poor behavior at school. 

He was allowed one hour of game time (Wii, XBox, DSI, ect). Watched cartoons when we were not watching what we wanted. That was pretty much it. Once you read what we have in place this is pretty dry, boring and uneventful.

Let me first point out that hubby and I worked on putting this together as a team. Hubby issues the points at the end of the day

OK - lets begin.

First point opportunity

I started off by using smiley face stickers that came in a rainbow of colors on one sheet. They were stuck to an index card and given a point value. The index cards to the left (in the picture) have stickers on the back corner and on the front is a certain behavior that we want to reward if it was good. For instance "good day at school". If he has a good day at school then he gets to draw an index card. He is awarded points based on the sticker value on the backside of that card. We also included a "Super" card and "Thanks for Helping"

Second point opportunity

He has daily "chores" in which he can earn points. Getting up and out of shower in time for school, gets school agenda out for dad to look at, getting ready for bed on time, etc. These are broken down and assigned point values. If he completes the task without being reminded/told then he earns the points. 

 Point Value for Rewards

 A list of rewards was typed up by hubby. So 30 minutes of game time cost 60 points. Watching a movie cost 90 points. Staying up extra 15 minutes (Sat only) 30 points. Basically the things that are intangible. The other things that are tangible go into our "family store".

The "store" is opened once points are given for the day. Hubby says that it is opened and gives a time limit, otherwise he would be a browser too long. He has the option too of saving his points for larger ticket items like maybe a t-shirt. Let me point out too that everything in the store is marked with a "price". When he is shopping he has to figure out how much he wants to spend and how much he has left.

Keeping Track of the Points

Front of index cards with sticker value on the backside.
I had said that we have done this system before, but we have tweaked it. One of the ways we have done so was to create something to help keep better track of points. My creative hubby had came up with a knockoff of game money. Creative huh? Well, he put someone from the family on each of the "dollars".
This helps in potential error of points, but also makes my stepson accountable for what he has earned.

We had begun this close to the holidays. To help ease with the transition we came up with additional earning opportunities. He was able to "unwrap" something that was wrapped with tissue paper on a cardboard roll. Inside there was an index card with something that he would otherwise not have gotten- 2 hours game time, doughnuts at Krispy Kreme ... yumm!! 

This has worked for us so far. The week before Holiday break from school was good. The week after Holiday break was good as well. He was rewarded at school for "personal best".

I would like to thank Amy over at  The Idea Room for inspiring our change in the point system.

Oh .. I forgot. He has not used his points for game time. Another plus is
he is spending time with us
instead of playing games or with his other toys.

Here is another way to help track points -  My Job Chart . It is customizable so points can be rewarded on the chart that way. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Stainless Steel Appliances - Quick Tip #11

Dont you HATE cleaning stainless steal stuff!

The smudges never seem to get better
when you clean them.

Err..its enough to make you
want to

 Try OLIVE OIL. I know... Crazy!?

Try it once and let me know. You know you want to.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Banner of Victory

Here is what I have been doing...

What do YOU think? 

Seriously, I never thought IT would be so easy peasy! I did it using Picasa by Google.

The best part - FREE!

That is right... Free! A little patience and brain power ~ I do mean very little and

I am so proud to have accomplished this ... without HUBBY.
I had a little help from here.

Be sure to check out my Etsy shop. Not only have I improved the banner, but also have a few
featured items.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Parenting Solution?

We have had some .... uhhh struggles ... with my stepson. Not horrific struggles, but struggles non the less. This week though he had gotten an award at school for personal best. Can I just say how proud I am of that moment. Hubby and I have been working hard to get something in place to take care of behavioral issues. We have my stepson every other week. I know - every other week? Oh that is nothing in contrast to what it was when hubby and I first met. But here we are in the present. I think the program that we have gotten into place the past three weeks (with us) has proven successful based of his reward at school. I will have to share with you what it is that we have done that has worked for us. It has taken some tweaking, but I think we have gotten it. But, you are going to have to wait. Sorry! I am going to have to have a few moments to gather everything so I can compose it so that it makes sense to everyone. Meanwhile, we hope that our success continues.

Look here for the Point System.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Egg - Quick Tip #10

When rinsing a raw egg from a dish use cold water. Using hot water can "cook" the egg making it harder to clean off.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Sock Quick Tip - #9

Socks always seem to get lost! To help prevent the smallest socks from disappearing I wash them in a mesh lingerie bag. Super easy!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Baking Soda - Quick Tip #8

Holidays are done ... ahhh! Kids are back in school. Whats that smell?? Use some Baking Soda to freshen up carpets. Sprinkle a little on the carpets. Allow it to sit a few minutes before vacuuming.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Top 5 Post

This Little blog of mine started in July. Thank you to everyone for stopping by. Here is a list of my top 5 post. 

Chocolate Peppermint Sugar Scrub

Bathroom Closet - Operation Organization

Apothecary Jars

Homemade Laundry Soap

Bathroom Art - PB knockoff

Happy New Year everyone! Keep an eye open for new projects.