Wednesday, April 20, 2011

We only have nutty?

Boy #4 is already hungry at 930 am.  He decides to make a pb & j.  He can't find the creamy peanut butter

Boy #4:  Do we only have nutty?

I love it!
And it keeps getting better...

I ask him to hand me a dish rag to clean up the counter.... he says...

I'm more of a thrower, not a hander.

Note to self and anyone else who's listening:
Enjoy your kids...they grow up way too fast.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

I'm gonna win me one of these...

If you don't know what this're missing out.

The Silhouette SD.  An awesome digital cutter and so much more.

You can:

     Cut paper, fabric, vinyl, and more. Check out this wall art.
     Cut templates to decorate fabric, glass, plastic, and even etch on glass.
     Design and make your own rhinestone embellishments.

This is just a sampling.  Check out this linky party with nearly 300 projects linked up that are done using the awesome Silhouette.  Plus you can sign up to win your very own Silhouette SD...hence this post.

I'm so going to win.  Neener, neener.

{Okay, so maybe I won't, but here's hoping...}
Winner annouced Sunday, April 23rd, so get hopping!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Spring Decor Update

Tell me I'm not the only one who loves a decoration enough to keep it for ten years...!!!  Yep.  I made this at a Relief Society Super Saturday years ago. It's a bit hard to tell what it says in the heart.  "Think Spring!"  When I got it out this year I resolved to do something about the fact that it is hard to read and this turned into a comeplete redo.  Pretty much everything changed.

 The tea dyed skirt, fabric squares and buttons...gone.  Checkers on heart...obsolete.
 Boring carrot is no more.  Again...buttons, so last decade in this application.
Let's give a warm Spring Welcome to our new "Think Spring!" door hanging.  More vibrant colors, saying definitely easier to read, and the up-to-date flowers on Ms. Bunny, heck, spring might just come calling! 
In particuar, I {heart} the new heart. 

First, I painted the heart white, followed by a pink and brown chevron pattern.  After that, I sanded to let some of the white come thru.  And last, adhered a vinyl saying. (The first one was drawn on with a sharpie.  We didn't have silhouette and cricut machines back in the day.) 

[Here's where I would insert a longing sigh....wish it was cut from my own Silhouette SD...still not totally sure if it's worth the money.  But would LOVE, Love, LOVE, to try one out.  FYI, I used masking tape to tape off the chevron, not perfect, but it worked.  Another reason for aforementioned new mommy toy.]
Mr. Bunny is sporting new spring green shortalls, and a much improved carrot in its own tulle bag.  The ribbon in his bow tie matches the ribbon on Ms. Bunny's heart.
Ms. Bunny's skirt fabric served as my inspiration for the entire redo. 

Needless to say, I was super excited to find a small scrap piece of this favorite fabric left in my stash.  Notice that she also is wearing fashionble ric-rac leggings with her new twisted fabric flowers in her hair, on her skirt, and on her heart-shaped bag.
I love it and that's about all that matters. The best part might be the total project cost... just 30 cents!  I had all the fabric scraps on hand, just had to purchase the vinyl. 

{My friend with a vinyl cutter is pretty cheap and fast...another reason I'm having trouble justifing the cost of my own machine. Someone, please tell me it's Sssooooo worth it???!!!!!}

Hope you are inspired to remake something of your own. 
More remakes, coming your way...
Until then...

Monday, April 11, 2011

Revamping Recipes...Carrot Torte

Don't you love it when you learn a new baking technic that makes you look  cook better in the kitchen?

Last week I showed you a picture of hubby's birthday cake...a chocolate torte.  Experimenting with the recipe resulted in something fantastic...a carrot torte, if you will.

Here's another picture...I'm not the greatest at taking food shots; I love the up close perspective of the photo above, but the love the coloring of the photo below.  Maybe someday I'll get it right.

 Here's the modified recipe:

Carrot Torte
1 spice flavored cake mix
1 cup sour cream
1 3.5oz pkg of vanilla pudding
3 eggs
1 1/3 cup water
1/4 cup oil
1/2 cup frozen carrots, thawed and chopped
1 cup raisins
(1/4 cup flour...for high altitude. We are at 3500 ft so I always have to add extra flour)

1. Mix together all ingredients except raisins. If everyone is opposed to raisins, you may consider adding 1 cup of carrots instead.  Extra vitamins never hurt anyone.

{In our house we are divided between those who like raisins and those who don't. Plus, I planned to take it to mutual for treats and figured I might have a mixed reaction.  I poured half of the batter into prepared pans and then added raisins to the batter before pouring into the second pan.}

2.  Prepare the pans.  I am a huge fan of parchment paper when I am turning a cake out of it's pan.  Spray with pam, add parchment paper, and respray. 

{I used two heart-shaped pans so I could cut them in half to make a carrot shape, however, a round cake would work, too. If you 're feeding a crowd, use a sheet cake pan and frost the top...the presentation won't be quite the same, but it'll still taste just as yummy.}

3.  Bake at 350 degrees for 40-45, increase the time on the box by about 5 or 10 minutes because of the carrots and raisins.  Just remember that a toothpic should come out clean before it's done.  FYI... A sheet cake usually will cook in 20-25 minutes.

4. Let cool and frost with the same amazing frosting from this post.   BTW, I used low fat cream cheese and it turned out just fine.  Tasted delicious!

1 pt. HEAVY whipping cream (no exceptions)
1 (8-oz.) block Cream Cheese (full calorie, NO exceptions)
2/3 c. Brown Sugar
1 tsp. Vanilla
½ tsp. Salt

In you mixing bowl whip your whipping cream until very thick. In a separate bowl blend together cream cheese, brown sugar, vanilla and salt. Now fold together the cream cheese mixture and the whipping cream.

To assemble your carrot shaped torte, cut each heart-shaped cake into four pieces by cutting in 1/2 to make two carrot shapes and then in 1/2 again horizontally.  Should've taken a picture.  The cake with raisins is a bit difficult to cut due to the raisins inside.  I would like to slightly blend the raisins next time to break them up.  If you are making a cake with AND without raisins, be sure to stack/layer the four layers without raisins together or you'll defeat your entire purpose.  This will require that you turn cakes upside down to keep your heart/carrot theme going.  Simply position one cake layer, frost, another layer, frost, until all four layers are in position.  Top with orange sprinkles.  Or you could be super crafty and color white chocolate meltys orange and make some cool orange chocolate curls.  There's a great tutorial for chocolate curls here.  Lastly, add some greenery for carrot tops.  I bought dollar store greenery, but my friend Tiffany mentioned that parsley would have also looked amazing.

Just in case you thought this post wasn't long are a few pictures from mutual.  Our Mia Maid class was in charge.  The girls brought easter eggs, paper, and pencils. We divided into groups of four and set up a hunt for the first 30-45 minutes.  Then we switched off and went hunting.  The girls had plenty of fun.
Waiting for all the groups to finish...

 Finding clues...

Waiting for all the groups to finish the hunt...

The LAST group, My Mia Maids.  The Laurels made our egg hunt and it was super HARD.  There were several clues hidden had grown dark and it was raining.  Still plenty of fun.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Keeping It Real

My loving youngest came up behind me this morning and gave me a hug.  He tells me if I am good I can have another one today at lunch.  

We are hanging out.  Nothing pressing really. I had a couple appointments, but they fizzled.  

At some point I will get dressed and go buy bread to get us through the weekend.  

It's nice to have an occasional day like today.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

In the kitchen

I'm baking a cake today.

This reminded me of the yummy cake I baked for hubby's birthday last week.  I have to share.  The recipe is no secret;  it's the chocolate torte I ran across on this blog.

Totally delicious and fancy looking, too.
Today I am revamping the recipe.
Instead of chocolate torte it will be a carrot torte.

My house is starting to smell yummy!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Love My Up-Sa Daisy China

I got curious today. 
Remember my daisy china from the garage sale?

I had to look up Noritake Up-sa Daisy China.

See the price tag on the third picture in...
its the large platter I purchased.

Add up the individual prices of all six piece...
Any guesses???


Not too bad for my $2 find.  I love them even more.

This afternoon between conference sessions we had waffles.
Waffles with your choice of:
Strawberry Syrup
Cinnamon Syrup
Apple Pie Filling
Ice Cream
Caramel Sauce
and of course...Maple Syrup.

I used the two creamer pitchers for our cinnamon
and strawberry syrup.
Love it!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Foolin' Around

Last year for April Fools day I made pancakes.  Not just normal pancakes...felt pancakes.  Basically, I cut out felt circles, dipped them in pancake batter and cooked them up on the griddle.  I fooled everyone. 

I took these pictures last year...wasn't into blogging so I have never done anything with them...until now.

I really fooled my four boys.  I even made some of them cry.  We need to loosen up around here. 

So, this year I couldn't come up with a good prank.  I did find and print out this.  It's a full color Chore Camp Brochure from Family Fun.  I printed it out and presented it to the boys this morning.  Congratulations, we are sending you to camp this summer.  They caught on pretty quickly.  We tried to talk it all up and they even played along...yep, knew we were foolin' around.

But then...I brought out the pancakes.  And this time I fooled them.

All of my boys were picking in their pancakes, checking for felt, or anything else suspicious.  I handed the camera to my hubby and whispered to him to take pictures, making sure they they knew I was up to something.  Were there onions in the batter???  What was different?

I let them worry a bit longer before telling them that the joke was on them.  There was nothing wrong with the pancakes.  They were completely normal, fine, edible...ha, ha, ha!

The younger boys pranked Dad with the usual...newspaper in his shoes.  Of course he totally played along and asked who had shortened his shoes.  And then he attempted putting them on.

Everyone scurried out of the kitchen to finish combing hair and brushing teeth before school.  I did dishes and cleaned up.  If I got everything picked up before they left, I could get straight to getting myself ready and get on to today's errands.

Boy #4 came running upstairs.  Someone had eaten all the starburst candies in the basement.  He was holding the large glass container from the wet bar!  I later learned, too late, that he had been sent by Boys #1 & #2.  The joke was on me.  And I fell for it.  They had simply emptied the jar into a bag.  What naughty children!  Where do they learn these horrible tricks?

Everyone was off to school.  Boy #4 doesn't have kindergarten today, so he got ready, too.  We had to go buy Conference Candy ready to play Conference Bingo this weekend.

And I was secretly hoping to find a garage sale...or two.  Lucky me.  Check out these finds.  The Cloche was just $1...yes, please.  Can't wait to find me a birdie.  I have a nest that will look great inside.  I've been eyeing these all over is just one example.   The Easter items will go nicely with what I already have and were only $1.75 foolin'.


There was just one other pile I couldn't keep my off my mind.  I knew if I left them there, I would wish they were mine.  My biggest dilemna was which to take and which to leave.  All of the pieces together were $3.75 (not a huge deal) and I probably didn't need all of them, but I had to choose. 

So I asked very nicely if they would take $2 for all of it!  And she said YES! foolin'.

The platter might be the perfect place for a spring quote. I really don't need it as a platter. Maybe this:
You can read the entire post here.

Have a Wonderful April Fools!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Successful surgery and more...

Remember my dryer

Nothing like a good-as-new appliance for just $16.  That's right.  The local applicance part's store sold it cheaper than online.  Drying clothes, a job that used to take 45 minutes to an hour, was taking about three hours. Three plus hours per load of laundry equals several long days of work and one getting-grouchy mom. 

After the easy fix was installed (by my handy husband) we checked to be sure everything was running smoothly. As my hubby proceeded to put everything back, I stopped him...sorry, I said, everything coming out. I'm not puting it back in all this filth. The washer came out, and lots of other junk I didn't know had fallen behind in the several years we have been here.  Boy #4 was right there, helping me clean. In case you didn't know he has a cleaning obsession.

And I totally didn't stop there.

 When I got married, one of my roommates, Loa, made me a super cute cross-stich. I've loved it and it has stayed with me in every apartment and home. Honestly...I've been tired of the oak frame for some time. It's been screaming at me for a redo. Here's what I came up with:

I apologize for this shot...I have very little space in my laundry "Hall." I was nearly sitting on the washer.

Sometimes I whine about this and then I remember how much I love having the laundry room upstairs and not down. It can be quite convenient to change the laundry while making dinner or mopping the kitchen floor.

The top of the cabinet looked bare...I went "shopping" around the house.  The IKEA CD storage boxes were hiding their cuteness inside a cupboard.  Since I got my android phone and pandora radio, I don't listen to the CDs that often anyway.  Maybe someday. The huge clothes pin was a project from our local craft store. It was brown and I had modge podged scrapbook paper to it...never liked I do.  Spray paint and the hand sander...enough said. And lastly, a valentine I gave my hubby...again, hiding in a cupboard.

My poor old black rag basket got a new coat of spray paint and an update.  I went "shopping" for fabric in my sewing room. 

{For some odd reason I have very little selection in the pink department.  Really the reason is obvious.  I have four boys....enough said.}

While "shopping," I did find a pair of pink striped Gap pants.  I bought them FOREVER ago while thrifting with the intention to turn them into capris or shorts for myself.  They will now be shorts. 

I'll attempt to show you...a tutorial of sorts.  This is a first for me.
Cut off the pant legs long enough to reach to the bottom inside the basket and hang over the desired amount outside the basket.  You can use a measuring tape.  I just held in up to the basket.  I also chose to use the original hem on the pants to thread my elastic thru so I only had one seam measurement to account for, the bottom where I attached the lining. 

Shown here is one of the two cut off legs.  I opened up the leg by cutting down one seam. They were a straight leg pant, no flare or anything crazy.  To accomodate the taper in the basket, I cut out two small triangles, leaving the hem at the top.  Do this on both legs. 

Next, thread elastic thru.  I threaded the elastic in both sides, looping the elastic at one end.  Sew up the edge with both cut ends.  Then, sew up the second side, stopping about 2 inches down from the top.  At this point I could check my elastic on the actual basket before sewing it up and cutting off the loop of remaining elastic. 

To add a bottom in the basket, I grabbed a lid that fit in the bottom of the basket.  Added a inch or so more, and simply sewed it in to the bottom, right sides together of course. Very easy.  Sewing projects around the house are lot of fun, because they usually do not require a lot of precision.  Sometimes I like that.  Easy Peasy, Lemon Squeezy.

Just like that, I turned a dull and dirty room into a fun, funcitonal space using things I already had. Thrify decorating at it's best. 

My favorite part of the whole laurndry room redo...undoubtedly the $3.54 can of spray paint I used to transform the picture frames and clothes pin.  Even with the new dryer part, a whole room got a new look for under $20!

Successful Surgery and Successful Decorating!

To finish off the project I got out the paint. Yep...touched up all the walls and trim in there too.  Here's my walk-thru laundry space.  The door heads out to the garage.  Picture is taken from the kitchen.

Whoever said a room makeover couldn't be done for cheap...
And another first...
I'm Linking up to some parties.

Tip Junkie handmade projects



Bubbly Nature

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Dryer surgery...

My almost 14 year old dryer has been most helpful over the years. During the last year it has become increasingly noisy...I thought for sure a belt was going to break. Then it magically got quiet again. I wrongly assumed it had fixed itself.  

Nope.  As we all know...appliances never fix themselves...just like...well nevermind...

After several weeks with a three hour drying time for even the smallest of loads, we got to taking it apart. Turns out the blower wheel isn't rotating. A new blower wheel is listed online at $20.68.  Can wait to get me some dry clothes in under an hour.

Thanks handy husband.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

For now...

Boy #4 and I are at the park.  I can't keep from thinking about him growing up. No one else asks me to take them to the park. Instead they want me to take them to a store to buy them something.  I think in a way I'm grieving him growing up.  He's my only boy that still used kid size hangers. Everyone else has graduated to big hangers; they steal mine when they run out.

Here is what I'm hearing:

You crack me up mom.
Mom, come here.
Do you know what a "uou pee lay lee" is?
Do you know what an underdog is?
Can you give me one?

I keep telling myself to enjoy it for now. Who knows just how long it will last.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Monday, March 7, 2011

Boy #3...human pretzel

Can you believe it?  He is so flexible.

Strange, weird, and even a bit funny.
Or some might say, OUCH!

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Thursday, March 3, 2011

A good habit...

Boy #4 has a really funky and yet awesome habit/talent...he loves to clean!  

I just caught him listening to music in his room while cleaning out his drawer.  Anyone who knows this boy knows this is just HIM.

Crazy? Maybe.  Awesome? YES!
I love my boy #4.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Friday, February 25, 2011


I wish I had a long list of the cute things my kids have said. I suppose its never too late.

Boy #4:  mom, when I die don't sell this blanket.  Cuz I want it when I come back alive.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone

Monday, February 21, 2011

Take time to...

I wish I could say I am taking time to smell the roses...but no.  Just another reminder to take time to...

...check those pockets.

With four boys you never know what you'll find.
Matches. Thank goodness all is well.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless Phone