September 30, 2010

Skip Halloween move to Christmas

Halloween? Yay!! Christmas? WHAT?! I can NOT believe when I went shopping last night, Halloween stuff was on clearance to make way for Christmas decor. I threw up in my mouth a little.  Then I went home, and fretted over what I am making/buying  for the holidays.

My friend received  an awesome gift  from her aunt after her recent wedding, a cookbook containing family recipes and memories.  After flipping through it - I would love to create the same tradition for my family.  Having six aunts, my mother, grandmother, and  cousins/sisters - we have dozens of favorite meals when it comes to the holidays/birthdays/family functions.  Why not create a binder to store all  of our family classics?

I searched the blogs (my favorite) for inspiration of how to set this project up.  Here is what I came up with:

Family Cookbook: Each page should contain a recipe, varied ideas and notes, and perhaps a picture of a family member taken within the last year(or perhaps what event the recipe is from!). However, I don't think each recipe will have a picture - because it might look too busy.  Each year (or every other year) I could continue to add to the binder, typing up new recipes that we've tried for that year and adding new pictures. I think using a large binder, divided into sections (appetizers, meat, desserts, etc.) would work.  Perhaps actually making use of the sheet protectors I have stored in the basement will make it spill proof? I'll have to figure out a system to date each recipe of when it was submitted so we know when it was added and who added them!  

Have to figure out how I am going to organize my recipes...and what program I am going to use to format them. I sent an email to nine women in our family, and asked them for their top 5 favorite recipes, or what they are known for (what people request most often).  I didn't give them any hints of why I needed them, as I wanted to make it a surprise.  I am thinking that for the first year, I won't add too many pictures or stories because I would rather people add what they want without letting on to what I am creating for Christmas.  

Any suggestions on how to create this? 


My First Blog Award!!

Thank you thank you! I wave my hand like a queen.  My first blog award!! I am so excited!!!  Thank you to Robyn over at Adventures in Abby Land for selecting me for The Versatile Blogger Award!!

What a great way to start the day!  I ran through the rain this morning, attempting not to look like a drowned rat - so when I opened up my email after getting into work and saw Robyn's comment - it made the wet feet and ragged hair not so bad!

*This is just a fun way to meet other bloggers and get to know one another, by passing these fun bloggy awards to other bloggers that we like! There are some FUN rules in accepting this bloggy award.
1. Thank and link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. Share 7 things about yourself.
3. Pass the award along to 15 other bloggers who you recently discovered and think are fabulous.
4. Contact the bloggers you choose and let them know they won the award.

7 things about myself??

1. I love school supplies.  I have an abundance of markers, pens, pencils, and staplers. Yes - staplers.  I have about 8 of them, and I am not sure why or how but I refuse to get rid of any. 

2. My best friend and her husband are moving to Africa to work among missionaries for the next ten months.  I am super proud of her, but will miss her terribly. 

3. I need to have ice in my drink at all times.   I realize it probably waters down most of my beverages, but I like my drinks at a chill temperature always.  *Except milk. YUCK*

4. Milk - I can not - and I repeat CAN NOT share my milk with anyone. For some reason, I find this absolutely gross. If you take a sip, consider it yours. 

5. I would love to be a baker, window display designer, cupcake maker, coffee shop owner, seamstress, costume designer, trampoline jumper, author.....and still be me. Yes, I need nine lives.

6. My favorite holidays are Christmas and Halloween. We completely decorate our house for both occasions (will post pictures!). Each year, we try to incorporate a new design or decoration...I can't wait to see how it comes out this year!!

7. Sugar is a necessity not a want.  My tea and sugar go hand in a point where there is a syrupy goo at the bottom of my mug - my husband wants to vomit, I want to smile and drink more.

This was very difficult to narrow down, but so much fun to go through my favorites :)
15 blogs to win this award:

(That list is in alphabetical order, not listed by favorites)

Thanks again for this wonderful surprise, and congrats to the 15 blogs listed above!!!

September 28, 2010

Halloween Fun using your printer

As a teacher I am obbessed  with printables - I use them as rewards for students who are finished with their work, or downtime activites.  The Python printable website has an array of Halloween games that are so neat for the classroom and home! I searched through their database of over 50 printable activities, and found games that span all age ranges. I used some of the "Kids' Halloween"  Activities (word searches,vocabulary sheets, puzzles) for my classroom -and then stumbled upon more "adult" games.

  We have an annual Halloween and plan on  incorporating some of the games.   My favorite is the scavenger hunt - the website gives you easy clues with simple household objects to locate.  We decided to make prizes (ranging from candy to wine!) for the winners.  This site seriously takes the  cake of finding fun  at parties.    
What I like the best about the site is it was fast to download and super easy to print off.  I'll be honest - at first when I saw the site, I was a little hesitate to even write about it, thinking how exciting can printables be?! But then I downloaded them, and they actually were quite cute!  What I like the best is how they are organized on the site - breaking the activities into : Kids',Teens, Adults, Party games, Trivia games, and word games. My son's favorite was the NFL printables, which included sports trivia , matching of  players to teams and a word search.  This kept him busy in the car as we searched the stores for additional Halloween decorations :)  

On their website, they advertise as followed:

Our printable Halloween party games pack is huge! We have over 50 printable items, including scavenger hunts, trivia, party games and craft activities suitable for Halloween, Fall Harvest and Thanksgiving.

The products are delivered by encrypted download. Once a customer pays, they receive an email link to their download page. This will allow us to send bloggers their review samples in moments, so this is not too close to the deadline for Halloween or the rest of Fall.

The price is $19.95 for over 50 games, which should make it very appealing!

To find out more about these games and what fun you could have,check it out! The site allows you to download a few Halloween coloring pages, and a coupon for $5.

September 27, 2010

Fantasy Magic and Fun in your living room

On rainy days like this, there is nothing I would rather do then sit around with my husband and watch movies.     The Not so perfect House wife is giving away a Disney movie called The Black Cauldron.
 Giving away a movie?!  Oh the thought of winning it and watching it today makes my heart flutter!
 Celebrating the 25th anniversary of the movie, Disney re-released it on DVD.  I vaguely remember watching with my younger brother, but I am tempted now to go and rent it to relive my childhood!I  Stop by Not So Perfect Housewife's site and check it out!Signature

September 22, 2010

To My Husband

Today is a random day - September 22nd. It  holds no special meaning to me, no one's birthday, no anniversary, no holiday, nothing. Well - actually, it's the last day of summer - so that is somewhat disappointing.  But I wanted to say today, on some random day  that I love you Bryan.  Though some days, I completely dislike you - there isn't a day that I don't miss you or a day that I don't wish you home sooner. I know you don't hear it enough, or I don't say it enough, but  it's there (sometimes buried very deep ) but I love you. And I am glad we have each other to lean on when we need it. 

You make me happier than I ever thought I could be and if you let me I will spend the rest of my life trying to make you feel the same way. 

- Friends


Moyers in Namibia: As We Prepare...

My best friend and her husband are preparing to leave for Africa in a few weeks. I wanted to support her and have everyone check their blog out. Julie is one of the most amazing people I know. Her strength and dedication to God and to her cause inspires me to be a better version of myself. She is witty, kind, and a wonderful friend. She is someone that I will always call my best friend, regardless of the distance (or continents!) apart we are.

Please read and follow her as her and her husband, Mark, venture forth and make a difference in the world.

Moyers in Namibia: As We Prepare...: "It is amazing to us that we are leaving for Africa in 5 weeks to begin our 8-month mission trip through the Africa Inland Mission! As each ..."

Much love and happiness to you guys!!!

I'm a GLEEk!!

I couldn't help it - but when the previews for Glee aired a few weeks ago, my lil heart fluttered out of my chest! I love the idea of an hour of karaoke on my living room couch.

Let me count the ways I love this show:
1. Sue Sylvester - Her sarcasm and complete loathing of Mr. Matthews (*sigh*) is absolutely hysterical.  And the way she addresses her Cheerios? I would get fired! 
Sue: "Boobs McGee, you're demoted to the bottom of the pyramid, so when it collapses, your exploding sandbags will keep everyone safe from injury."   HAHA

2. The school's guidance counselor, Emma, is as sweet as sugar - it's almost sickening! But she is adorable in her little sweater/dress J. Crew vintage look is definitely what I am striving for this school year!
 Grabbed from

3. Kurt. I loved him from the moment he sang "Single Ladies" last season!

4. Puck. Everyone loves a bad boy...and it helps that he sings!

5. Pretty much every dance and song routine.  As I watch the show, I like to dance around my living room (as my husband and dog stare at me in confusion) while singing into my hairbrush.  No evening can top that :)


September 14, 2010

Sisters Grimm won my heart and my time

Little came home with a book last week, and after flipping through it - I decided to read it myself.  The plot was adorable and witty! It covered my favorite subjects from my childhood - fairy tales! (but with a twist).  If you have  child between the ages of 8-12, these books  are definitely worth checking out.  
By the same author who wrote Nerds,   Michael Buckley writes about the misadventures of two sisters, whose family 's past involves magic and mystery.   The series is called "Fairy Tale Detectives: Sisters Grimm", and it involves all the characters from countless fairy tales in an amusing and different light.  Prince Charming? Not so charming. He is the mayor of the town and quite conceited.  Three little pigs? They are obnoxious police officers (gee what a reference!) who are ruled by their stomaches. 
I don't know how someone couldn't love this series, and I  may have scared off Little because I've been raving about how clever I think they are.  I  finished the book in less than an hour, and can't wait for him to take out the second book (there are 6!) The overall idea of the series is that the writings of  the Brothers Grimm were not just tales, but historical books recounting  the  accomplishments of the  Everafters, the characters from fairy tales.  When the Everafters start  to be come uncontrollable, a spell is cast upon them so they are contained to one town - Ferryport Landing, New York.  (ha!). The deal is the Grimm family must oversee the mishaps of the Everafters,  and if/when  the Grimm family no longer exists - only then can the Everafters leave the town.  Each books highlights  a mystery or crime committed by an Everafter, and the Sisters Grimm, with great assistance from their grandma need to solve it! 

I completely  recommend this book series!


September 09, 2010

Give me a Smile and I'll give you a cookie - Smiley Cookie Review &Giveaway

I had the pleasure of tasting Smiley Cookies..and just by looking at them, what's not to love?

Smiley Cookie Craze
Smiley Cookie offers fresh-made, hand iced sugar cookies with a smile through the mail.  Not only can you order a dozen faces online and have it shipped anywhere, but you can order specialty cookies - whether it's for Halloween, Christmas, baby news, or just because - Smiley Cookie has a million smiles to send.  (And I would eat a million!)

  Eat-N-Park,  a restaurant that is not located anywhere I live, decided that besides offering food - they would start marketing their sugary treats to the world through use of the internet.  SmileyCookie has been generous enough to send me a dozen cookies to sample.  When I heard the news, I waited every day for the mailman to deliver me my sugar fix.  Luckily, I didn't have to wait long - as they shipped out immediately.

Looks-wise: Can we say super cute? I couldn't help but smile when I opened up the bland UPS box, and saw the cookie box decorated in smiles. Yes, I smiled right back.  I quickly opened the cookie container and fixed my eyes on the prize.  The cookie. It was completely cute!

Taste-wise: This sugar cookie can rival other cookies in the store. It tasted yummy, and the icing was just sweet enough! If you are going to send someone a gift of food, why not send them cookies?  Starting at 12.99 for a dozen cookies, you can't beat it!

What I love the most about this company is the variety of how to send a gift!  They have a wide array of gift packages, and one of my favorite design is the Pirate Smiley face.  Arrrrrr-n't you excited?

They also offer cookie gift baskets (umm...hello? who WOULDN'T want that!) for all different occasions. If you are sending someone a gift for a baby, why not send them cookies -and what's neat is the gift package comes with other gifts...The baby boy gift basket not only contains 36 mini (baby!) cookies, but also a bib that says: "I've got the bring the cookies".  How clever!

All in all, Smiley Cookie left me with a full belly and a happy face!

So now that I have gone on and on about these sugary cookies, why not try some for yourself?  Simply sign up for their email club and receive a $5 off coupon.  (you can find the sign up form in the bottom right of their homepage)  Or, you can enter my very first giveaway!!! I am giving away a box of smiley cookies just like the one I received. 

**Required Step** - Follow Smiley Cookies on twitter.  Click here!
 - Follow me (yay!) publicly on Google Friend then post about which Smiley Cookie you like the best!

For additional entries:

  • "like" my blog on facebook
  •  blog about this contest with a link to this post (leave the link to your post)
  • Follow me on Twitter
  • tweet about this giveaway (leave a link to your tweet)
  • Grab my button
 Easy peasy! The contest is open to US residents only, and will run until 11:59 pm on Monday, September 20, 2010.  The winner will be picked by random and announced the following Wednesday.  Good Luck!
Sponsored by


Birthday cake? Nay, give me a birthday scone!

Today is my mom's birthday, and to celebrate - I had all the plans of baking her a cake.  However, bringing a cake to the restaurant made me feel uneasy, so I decided to make her breakfast for the next morning!
I have been drooling over a Strawberry Scone recipe for weeks, so now I have an excuse to bake!
Strawberry Scones

1 large egg
¼ cup vanilla yogurt
½ cup milk
1 tsp vanilla extract
2¼ cups all-purpose flour
¼ cup sugar, plus more for sprinkling
1 tbsp. baking powder
8 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into VERY small pieces
1 heaping cup diced fresh strawberries
In a small bowl, whisk together the egg, yogurt, milk and vanilla until blended; set aside.  In the bowl combine the flour, sugar, and baking powder.   Add the butter pieces to the bowl with the dry ingredients, and mix until the largest butter pieces are the size of small peas. If you have a food processor, you could use it to fold the butter into the mix. (I don't, so I cut the butter into very tiny pieces).  Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
Add the strawberries to the flour mixture and toss to coat.  Add the wet ingredients to the bowl with the dry ingredients and gently fold together with a fork or spatula until a sticky dough has formed.  Knead just a few times to ensure that all the dry ingredients are incorporated and the dough is cohesive.  (Only if absolutely necessary, add more milk 1 tablespoon at a time to hydrate the remaining dry ingredients.)
*Transfer the dough to a well floured work surface and pat into a disc about 7-8 inches in diameter.  Sprinkle lightly with additional sugar.  Slice the disc into 8 wedges.
To bake the scones, preheat the oven to 425˚ F.  Line a baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment paper.  Place the shaped scones on the prepared baking sheet and bake until lightly browned on top, about 15 minutes.  Let cool a few minutes before serving.

Adapted from Good Things Catered

* Problems with this recipe I encountered: I did not feel like flouring my countertop - so instead, I took a heaping spoonful of dough and flattened it on the pan. Still looked good!  (Not really scone looking though!). 
**Other problems – perhaps you shouldn’t let your parchment paper drape over the pan because then (surprise surprise!) it catches on fire.  It is a good thing that Mr. is quick and picked up the burning pan, and threw it in the sink.  What did I do?  I picked up the dog and ran out of the kitchen. All Mr. did was look at me and ask what exactly I was doing squeezing the living daylights out of our pup.  Well gee; she wouldn’t be able to save herself!
The scones turned out delicious, and after they cooled – I put them in a container to be carried to the restaurant! And I didn't burn down the house! (Yes - I will be singing Talking Heads now....)

Happy Birthday Mom!! Love you!

September 07, 2010

Etsy Love

Recent Etsy I am looking through my google reader - I come across the cutest hair bands that are on sale for a whooping $5! five dollars?! I heart headbands and this certainly will pimp my hair.  The elastic band doesn't seem like it will squeeze my head (a reason why I can't wear hairbands all day). And for 5 dollars? I have met my hair's soulmate.  
I quickly purchased three - it took me no more than three minutes to pick them out and buy them. I can't wait for them to arrive! There are all different colors and styles to check out!!
After perusing the site, I settled not only on three hairbands, but also a necklace. The flower jewelry has three fabric flowers attached to a chain.  I already have my outfit picked out when it arrives in the mail!

Check out The Trendy Owl's Etsy site to see all the different types of designs!  


September 05, 2010

Alice in Wonderful-land

LOVED it. Alice in Wonderland directed by Tim Burton. I had my concerns, but it completely surpassed my expectations. And now I want to throw my own own tea parties.

How to do it and make it look mad? easy-peasy.

There are so many elements that you can pull together to make it look like you're in wonderland. Most of the time, Alice parties are for children, but it could also be a more adult function, if you allow. How much fun!

I can imagine my 30th birthday party following this theme! (yes, I am thinking about my own "surprise" birthday party. hehe) So, this post is for my husband's benefit, and those that will help plan (my best friends/family).

Centerpieces are a must, and how to pull it off? Bright flowers, grass, bright and bold colors, and playing


I love the idea of paper lanterns, of all shapes and sizes hung from the ceiling. Jessica Claire, a photographer, photographed fantastic party pics that did exactly this!

Different websites sell inexpensive lanterns, that give a variety of choices. Luna Bazaar is fairly inexpensive, and I love all the options. There are over 50 color choices, and a 14 inch lantern runs about $5.

The Paperlantern Store is even cheaper (I think), as 20 inch lanterns are $6.25 - though it doesn't seem they have as many colors.

In addition to paper lanterns, why not paper blossoms?

You can hang them from ceiling, tables - and they are easy to make!

According to Lenny's Alice in Wonderland, there are thousands of different ideas for a wonder wonderland party.

On Etsy by VivaLaViolette

Party Invitations- Tell your guests not to be late for a very important date, like a birthday party (or UN-birthday party!)- Shape your invites like a teacup- Make a top hat card, cut the top and replace it with a 10/6 card containing the details of the party. 


From Entertainment Exchange

It would be cute to have long tables covered with all different kinds of teapots, mismatched teacups, and cover it with bright tablecloths. 

The lawn could have lawn flamingos and different signs....fill vases with white and red roses...

Games:Play lawn croquet: with hedgehog plush toys as balls, or perhaps hedgehogs painted on the balls. Attach colored and stuffed socks to the end of the mallets and sew on eyes, to represent flamingos, or use a plush flamingo. Create large cardboard playing cards for the arches.

From the BEST tea party

Food and Drink:  Attach labels with the words "eat me" and "drink me" to all kinds of things! 

Have cupcakes or cookies with the words "Eat me" on them!!!

There are so many ideas out there - my mind is spinning round and round!!
I just want my flamingo mallet so I can shout "Off with his/her head!" Haha. It's the little things....


Haunt My House

I can't believe the summer is over and I am posting about Halloween!  My brain can't wrap around the idea of projects, but I will gladly post what our house looks like!

My husband and I made haunted gates to welcome our guests throughout October. We took planks of wood making a pillar on either side of the fencing. Then we taped the sides and spray painted them gray and made it look like it was bricked.  We made a fence out of PVC piping and painted it black to resemble fencing in a graveyard.
Lastly, we put gargoyles on the top of the pillars. That is my favorite part of the display!  People actually thought we had them up all year round!!

The creepy spiders crawling up our house are my favorite!  We have over 8 spiders crawling up the house (they are HUGE!!!) and actually are quite frightening.

Each year we try to create an additional Halloween decoration.....any thoughts of what to add to our house?   


September 04, 2010

Please Please Please Let me get what I want

After staying up the wee hours by myself, with company of my dog (she is a great sidekick), I just decided what I need. I want. I must have.

A cricut. After this realization, I ran up the stairs to whisper this in my husband's ear while he was sleeping, so I hope he dreams of it!  But I said it fast and low so maybe he will subconsciously dream of crickets - sounds somewhat like my new lust! Right now it is on sale for a whooping $97 at AC Moore! Which is more than half price!
I don't know what exactly I would do with this machine - but it seems every blog I read, the bloggerette (yes. I made that word up) has one! And she creates beautiful projects!  

Hopefully, I will continue whispering sweet nothings of craft machines in my husband's ear, or I will just take matters into my own hands!  

What kind of projects have you made with this pretty little thang? Leave a comment with your link!


September 03, 2010

Let's Hear it for Summer!

A picture recap of our summer!
Happy Labor Day Weekend!!

Here's to a wonderful summer and a soon-to-be a wonderful fall!!