Saturday, August 20, 2011

Party, Party, Party

This box has everything I need to hopefully give my 4 year old the Superhero party he is dreaming about.  My goal is to do this party for under $125.  That includes food, drinks, games, cupcakes, and capes and masks for all 15 kids! This is going to be a challenge but I am up for it.  Many items have been  recycled from my pantry and borrowed from my 4th of July decoration thank goodness. I will post pictures and details after the party.  Ideas are still swimming in my head and hopefully I will be able to make them happen. Wish me luck.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Fall Wreath

Fall has got to be my favorite time of year.  The smells, colors, and getting back into a schedule after summer.  This is also the time of year that I love to decorate my house in all those rich tones the season has to offer.  As soon as I started playing around with my Silhouette, I knew I had to make a fall craft.  I love wreaths and found some paper flower wreaths on Pinterest that I just adored.  This is the paper wreath creation that I came up with. 

I used a wire wreath frame for my base and then glued green moss around it.  I found two similar flower cut out from the Silhouette sight and cut them using autumn colors.  I then glued the flowers around the wreath. I haven't quite decided where I am going to hang it.  
Corey has told me in the past that there is no fall decorating until after his birthday, September 5.  I guess I have to wait till then to make my decision.

Monday, August 8, 2011

What you could make with old fence pieces :)

So my dad had some old fence pieces laying around in his garage from my grandmother's old house.  I had my eye on them for quite some time.  I finally asked him if I could have them and he told me to take them all.  I was some excited, ideas were flooding my brain! I really wanted some kind of coat rack in our  front entry way, so this is what I came up with from one piece of fencing.  Corey cut the rounded part off and made the piece about 3 feet wide.  We then screwed in some drawer pulls from IKEA, $2,  as the hooks.  He then screwed the board into the wall in four places.  I was so pleased at how rustic it came out.  I have more pieces that I have fun ideas for.  I will post them once they are completed.  

Sunday, August 7, 2011


Ok my dear friends, I need some ideas regarding types of fabric to cover my black distressed kitchen chairs with.  I have a red/cream floral print now and it already looks horrible. I've only had it on for a year! I was thinking a type of burlap but thought that would be hard on the legs when sitting in shorts. I don't want anything too expensive either.  The chairs were purchased at a garage sale for about $18 a piece.  I would post a picture put our computer is acting up.  As soon as I have one I will post it. Please help by commenting on the blog.  

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Bathroom Complete

The bathroom is 99% complete.  It's now my turn to work in it.  All I have left is to touch up paint and that's it!!! Done, done, done.  I am so thankful that we had summer vacation to complete this.  Corey was going to tackle this project the week before Christmas.  I would have gone CRAZY if he did.  If you could all remember, it was a week full of rain and Corey was getting his masters.  It would have taken him months to complete.  We had some set backs, the wrong green board, plumbing, oh and the fact that Corey got a skin infection on his knee and couldn't kneel on it for a few days.  We believe that was gracefully given to him by a spider and a dirt-filled campsite.  Anyway, I love my bathroom.  It is mold free and squeaky clean.  You may not see much of a difference, but we sure do.  He now wants to tackle the other bathroom.  Thank goodness it is just putting bead-board in. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Camp Out

I thought I would be blogging about a finished bathroom, but not quite yet.  Hopefully by next week it will be DONE completely.  Rather, I am blogging about the boys first camping trip.  Our family along with my wonderful cousin Aleica and her family planned a camping trip to Hurkey Creek.  This is near Idyllwild. Our lovely trip started with the camp's welcoming committee coming out to greet us.  Mr. Garter snake and his red ant friends.
Thank goodness they just said hi and went away for the weekend. We were worried for a few. The kids loved everything about this trip.
  They had a blast cooking our meals over the fire and sleeping in a tent.  S'more were the best.  They've had them at the beach but there's something about eating them when you're camping. They're just better. 
The weather at night wasn't the best. The first night we all thought we were going to freeze to death.  It was in the upper 40's.  Doesn't sound that bad but when you're in a tent.. it's bad. 
The boys were able to fish for the first time on this trip too.  They really enjoyed that.  They were hoping to catch our dinner on Sat., but they aren't that good yet. Corey was entertaining our side of the camp ground with his water rockets.  That man can attract all kinds of attention when he has his rockets in toe.  
Over all we had a great time.  Had to accept dirt all over the place and waking up to a frozen nose. Camping is something I have to get use to being blessed with two boys. I think our next camping trip will be in a pop- up trailer at the beach.  That's more my speed. 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Bathroom Remodel Day 9

Well, we have TILE!!! Corey is finishing up the grout today and hopefully, cross your fingers, we will be able to shower in our OWN shower tomorrow.  Painting may happen tonight and sink and tolite will be put in, hopefully not as our guests are arriving,  tomorrow sometime. 
I am so excited to post pictures of a completed bathroom. This has been a rough job for Corey and possible his biggest. 
 He called it his 8 x5 jail-cell and doesn't want to have to work in there again.  Let's hope not. Here is a quick look at the tile work. 
 Really, I do let him out to go to bed at night.  He also gets more than bread and water for dinner. 
   No, a tile didn't fall out.  That is where our soap dish is going. 

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Bathroom Redo Day 4 or 5 (I can't remember anymore!)

So this remodel seems like it has been forever, especially when you have to drive 6 miles to take a shower everyday.  There aren't any pictures because there is too much that has been done.  The drywall is up, thank goodness.  We had a little hick-up on Monday when Corey realized that the drywall was the wrong size.  This is after getting up the ceiling and one piece and it was at 10:30 at night so we couldn't do anything about it until the morning.  So that puts us a day behind. As of right now, Corey is in the there mudding everything and MAYBE we can start tiling at 9:00 tonight.  We shall see. 
Must... get..... bathroom..... done...... by ....... 4th of JULY. 
I have faith in him. I know he will get it done if he has to be up to 2:00 in the morning Monday.  Can't wait to post pictures.  To keep my wonderful man going strong, I have been feeding him well at night.  Gotta give him fuel :)

Monday, June 27, 2011

Dinner Tonight

While my man was working hard in our bathroom, I made him a tasty meal of bbq pork that was soaked in a beer brine,  a sweet and sour peach sauce, bbq acorn squash, and  fresh garlic green beans from our garden. Hope this will give him fuel for the rest of the night to keep on truck-en in our bathroom.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Bathroom Remodel Day 2 and 3

And the dust and disorganization continues.  The last two days Corey has torn out the shower, redid the plumbing, he is a certified plumber now :), and did some rewiring.  I ask my grandfather "With all Corey is doing for this project, how much do you think it would have cost us to have some else come in and do everything?"  He said about $10,000-$15,000!!! We are doing it for about $1500! Corey has been our lifesaver for all home improvement projects. I am so thankful for his hobbies.

Wiring for a light/fan combo
Just finished plumbing for our new shower fixture.
"Ummm, did I do it right???" I am hoping that is not what he is thinking.
The bin is FULL!!! Party in the dumpster everyone. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

Bathroom Remodel Day 1

Well, the demo started yesterday at 2:30.  My husband didn't take time to rest on his official start of summer.  He walked straight into the garage, grabbed a hammer and started demoing away.  The boys could hardly wait for daddy to get home yesterday because he promised to let them break a wall done.  I see a family construction business in our future.  


Shower is coming out today, Friday, along with some new plumbing.  I am just praying that we don't have a mold problem behind the tile. Saturday is drywall day.  As Corey was demoing, I kept hearing the theme song from Renovation Realities in my head. There are always problems on that show. Hopefully we won't follow in their footsteps. 

Monday, June 20, 2011


Our summer garden has started delivering it's gifts.  Our tomatoes are taking off but not quite ready to be picked.  I'd say with in the next 3 weeks we will have enough juicy heirloom tomatoes to test every tomato recipe out there.  

Tyler found the first gifst ready to be picked... our surprise carrots! We didn't plant these.  We think what happened was that we had a pack of carrot seeds that the boys purchase and then left outside on the side of the garden.  We then had all that rain and wind and we believe the seeds got tossed in our garden. To our surprise, we got 2 carrots!
I believe we are going to be adding to our garden this summer.  We are going to be building 2 more beds in the backyard.  I want one strictly herbs and the other 2 in very well organized rows :) Pictures will be posted as soon as they are made. This garden has been one of the best things we added to our backyard.  The whole family has so much fun taking care of it. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Sand Pail

 I finally found it!! My vintage sand pail.  I have been looking for one for almost a year.  I found them online but they were way too much for my wallet.  Sugar Plum craft fair was my lucky stop.  As Ethan and I were walking down the aisles, I saw this beautiful bucket staring at me through a pile of vintage toys.  I moved as swiftly as I could to swoop in and grab it before another pail lover saw it. 
 As soon as I stuck it in my bag, a lady went looking through the toys and then glared back at me. It may have been just a stare but it seemed like a glare :)
I guess I was the winner of the one and only sand pail at Sugar Plum :)
Yeah for me.  I looks so summery on my piano along with my wooden flag Corey built.   

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Jam Time

I made my second batch of jam today.  Well, actually my first REAL batch because I followed EVERY step to the canning process.  The jam of the day is vanilla, cardamon, apricot jam thanks to my wonderful neighbor who loaded us up on apricots.  The boys wanted to be part of this, so I put them in charge of cutting the apricots. Tyler is quite the lean mean cutting machine. 

30 apricots, 1 1/2 cup sugar, 1 vanilla bean, and a teaspoon of cardamon later we have 4 jars of jam. Truly amazing and oh so delicious.  I can't wait to spoon this over oatmeal or warm pancakes tomorrow morning. Next attempt, something with rosemary or sage.   

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Homemade is just better

I don't know what has gotten into me.  I just made a huge batch of homemade coconut almond granola and then attempted to make apricot jam.  I did my own thing with the jam and it actually turned out quite yummy.  I just need to study up on the canning process so I can make large batches later. I was always one for modern conveniences but lately the thought of making everything from scratch has tickled me pink! I love being able to enjoy food that I know exactly where it came from and how it was made.  I think I have rubbed off on my oldest son.  After dinner, he decided he wanted to make homemade lemonade. I told him we had some I just bought from Sprouts, but  he said "The kind made from these, holding lemons, just tastes better mom."  While doing all this cooking, 
  I am still tossing around the thought of building a chicken coop in our backyard and maybe even hanging a clothes line.  My dad has said lately that I would have done
well on his family's farm in Nebraska.  I think I would have, for a few months :)

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Summer Decorating

Well, we don't have a mantle but our piano is the closes thing I have to decorate like one. I saw a mantle decorated for summer on my favorite blog, The Lettered Cottage, and I wanted to do something like it on our piano.  I showed Corey this awesome flag and he made one for me almost identical. All you need is 2, 3" firring strips cut down, whatever size you want.  He then screwed them together in the back.  I painted each strip with a water wash of blue and white paint before he screwed them together.  I found the small star fish at a shell shop in Huntington Beach.  They were $1 a piece. And here you go!

 I then saw an idea for scrap material flags that I couldn't wait to make.  
I found quilting scraps at Johann's that were on sale and couldn't pass up.  The flags are just dowels cut in thirds.  I then attached squares fabric pieces to the dowels with small rubber bands. I want to make more for the 4th of July!

So this is my summer mantle/piano. 
I added a finishing touch of an old apple sauce jar filled with pebbles and a candle.  The other side of the piano has a hurricane filled with shells and a candle as well.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Beach Days Coming Soon

My wonderful boys gave me my much desired beach cruiser for Mother's Day.  They all had bikes and always wanted to go ride but I never had anything.  I guess I could have just ran with them but I think a bike ride would be better.  I can't wait to have the four us ride 
along the beach this summer with our delicious sandwiches in my basket.
 I can see picnic lunch in our future. 

 Summer beach days are almost here. 

Monday, May 16, 2011

The Table is Done!!!

We were able to enjoy the table for the first time at Krysta's 21st birthday party.  I was 
wonderful.  We were able to seat 10 people!  I can't wait for BBQ time this summer. This is actually
identical to a dining table in Pottery Barn.  They want about $1200 for JUST the table.  It cost us around $200 for the table and benches. 
 My husband is so talented.  Many of us have told him to start sell these but I don't know if he would enjoy mass producing them. It's just a hobby he has and he is ultra picky about his work.  

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Zebra Party Complete

Decorations are down, food is all eaten, and memories have been made.  My niece Krysta's 21st birthday party is over.  I had such a joy planning this event with my sister-in-law Melissa.
The challenge of having a budget for the party was the best party.  I love doing a party on budget.  We started with ordering the invitations from, my favorite place for invitations.  We also ordered stickers to make cupcake toppers.  They were all under $15 dollars.  Flowers were complements of Costco.  We only had 2 bunches of flowers and turned them into 4 table top decorations.
We then purchase many items from the Party Barn and Fabric Barn in Long Beach.  We used zebra print wrapping paper as table runners, zebra gift bags as center pieces along with signs made from my computer to put into the bags. All under $40.  That also included plates and table clothes. 
After searching for ideas online, we found at, these adorable tissue paper pompoms.  The hours that were spent on these really made the party sparkle.  My nephew's girlfriend is now quite the expert on pompom making. 

When guests arrived, they were asked to guess how old Krysta was on the tree of pictures. It was a cute way to get the guest involved in the party.
Found this adorable zebra dress at Sugar Plum Craft Show.  Couldn't pass it up. Party decoration amount totaled around $100.  Food was the majority of our budget. 

Food was wonderful.  Pasta for dinner and a decadent dessert bar for dessert.  Decadent it was! Everything was homemade expect the birthday cake.  We had to stop somewhere.
Devils food cupcakes with marshmallow creme filling.

 Lemon curd and blueberry trifle 
 Cinnamon and vanilla popcorn

 Cookie dough cake balls
 We also had a fondue station which for some reason didn't get its picture taken.  That was the hit of the party. 
Garden Vegetable and Garlic Chicken Alfredo Pasta

 One last decoration, a 21 made out of picture of Krysta.
The party's over but the memories will last forever.  I have found by doing this that I really would love to pursue party planning.  I loved every minute of doing this.  My niece was concerned that I was put out by it all.  Not one bit.  It was a joy to do this for such a wonderful young lady.  
Happy 21st Birthday Krysta :)

Party Planning in The Making

A while ago my niece asked if we could host her 21st birthday and help her plan it.  I was so honored that she wanted me to help.  Her theme.... Zebra print.  I couldn't wait to start shopping for it.  Today my sister-in-law and I started the process at a place called the Party Barn in Long Beach and I fell in love! It had everything a party planner could ask for.  And then next door..... the Fabric, more like ribbon, Barn.  HEAVEN! 
    I thought I would give you a taste of what we bought today to make the decorations.  So many ideas are flooding my brain!  I can't wait to post the final products.