23 January 2015

Organizing Friday~Week 4

This week was crazy but I managed to get a few things done.
I decided to move the grey table in front of the crawl space, cause it was just a big ol' eye sore. It's not THAT much better but better than it was.

Drawers all cleaned up and rugs stuck down and I fixed the front window curtain.

This week I am working on our coat closet! We are not used to the less space and no place for shoes! 
This is how we started out.

I have a lot of aprons, even after getting rid of more than half. I use them most days and I have a hard time parting with them.

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22 January 2015

Gold & Pink Party Inspiration

Usually this time of year is full of Birthday planning. But being in a smaller place and we weren't sure if we would be here or in the middle of moving etc. We decided to do things super simple this year. We are having a joint party for our oldest 2, their birthdays are 1 day apart. We rented the local swimming pool and I am getting a Costco cake. It's really whats best for us this year but makes me a little sad. I wanted to do a pink and gold party. I don't like gold that much but I love it on party supplies!! Just sharing some ideas I had floating around and some great sources for cute stuff!
I have a feeling I won't be so eager to do Gold and Pink next year. 
I always start with decorations, stuff like a banner or picture.
This DIY one is nice and basic
This one is more my style. I prefer less straight lines and more whimsy

But THIS is my favvvvvorite!

And outfits, ahh soo many!
Everything from over the top to super casual and super adorable

Supplies, things like silverware, napkins, think of everything you can do with some gold glitter!
And SO many cute treats and cakes!

Sad that we probably won't get to make this one happen, but if your little girl loves gold or pink and glitter, check out my Pinterest board  HERE for all of these links and more :)

Can't wait to see where we are for next years birthday parties! I feel like I am running out of themed parties for these big kids, they are growing so fast!
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21 January 2015

Haven Checklist

 I shared before some of the things I know my family appreciates at home. The obvious stuff, but I also want to think more about the little things and make an effort to do them more often too!

Not likely these will all happen everyday. but I work well with a checklist, even if it's just for the occasional reference. On an ideal day where no one loses their lunchbox, spits up 30 seconds before we have to walk out the door or has a meltdown over lunch, I could get these all done everyday. It's not a long list but doesn't include any tidying or cleaning.  

Does it Smell Good?
We use 2 types of smell good stuff. Scentsy and Wall Flowers from Bath and Body Works. I pretty much stick to just 1 smell from each place. I use Happy Birthday from Scentsy and whatever the current Salted Caramel, Creamy Caramel, Caramel something from Bath and Body Works. I try to change the scentsy every week if the smell has faded. I don't use more than 1 of either. Some people are scent sensitive and I don't want it to be overpowering.

What is there to eat?
Goodness gracious do our kids come home hungry everyday?! The way they instantly go for a snack would make you think they haven't eaten all day. I have really been slacking on the snack department lately. I am working on getting back to having homemade snacks more often. I don't like to buy or give the kids the prepackaged stuff. We did find an organic all natural brand that isn't as expensive but it's still not my favorite thing for them to have. 
Our kids all have a sweet tooth. I don't want to give them dessert for a snack, but I do think something on the sweeter side 1 or 2 days a week would be a nice surprise.

No one really LIKES to do homework, me included, but it needs to be done. Keeping the homework stuff prepped and supplied helps make that afternoon chore a little easier.

Healthy Yummy Meals
Depending on which kid you ask about a meal will depend on the answer you get about if it's yummy. I am not about to make 2 different meals for the kids. They have the choice of eating what we are having or the alternate (and very similar) meal. My mom is a super picky eater, I am pretty picky but getting better, hubby is picky. I was never forced to eat anything, accept by my sweet great grandma. It was horrible, and I remember feeling anxiety about eating around her. I would rather our kids not have that anxiety and trust me when I tell them they might like something. Dinner is just not the time to argue over stuff like veggies anymore. If they don't like the veggies, I don't stress anymore. I just sneak it in a smoothie and don't tell them. It's a win win win. They win by not having to eat something they really dislike, I win by getting them the veggies anyway, the family wins because it tends to keep dinner time a little more peaceful. 

Has anyone seen where this print is from? It's adorable, love the colors!

Open the windows on nice days
We don't have a lot of those right now, but every once in a while, and as we get closer to spring, a lot more days. I love the fresh air and it just feels better to have the windows open!

How's it sound?
I try to put music on that no one really dislikes, pleasing all of us at once will be tricky, but there are some Pandora stations that don't play songs any of us have expressed a dislike for. 
My favorites are The Civil Wars Station, and The Avett Brothers Station, depending on what kind of mood I am in.

And I could read this BLOG all day, well if I didn't have a million other things to do. It is full of great ideas and the contributors are all sweet! I love the Hospitality Series they have done.

Speaking of Hospitality. I want to check both of these books out! Have you read either?
*affiliate links

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19 January 2015

Apple Pie Energy Poppers

Just tried these for the first time last night, they went really fast! Super tasty and super easy to throw together!

3/4C Dried Apple Rings
1C Pitted Dates
1/2 C Oats
1/2 Tbsp Cinnamon (I used Pumpkin Pie Spice)
**If I was a little more awake when I made them, I would have added some flax meal and some walnuts would have made them even better!

Dump all the ingredients in a food processor and blend until doughy.
Roll into balls (I used about 1 Tbsp. per ball)
Put on a parchment paper lined tray
I set ours in the fridge for a bit, then moved them to an airtight container.

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16 January 2015

~~Blessing Jar~~

Our kids are pretty sweet in general, but to encourage them to look for opportunities to be a blessing to each other and to others I made this jar. Nothing fancy, just a mason jar and a little tag.

I have a stash of these Pom Poms (even in Valentine Colors!)

and rather than only verbalizing how proud I am of these kids, I want them to see how much they can do and how quickly it will fill up if we are looking for chances to help each other. I might even swap out the things we use as filler, to match the season.
When it is all full we will do something special!

This sweet heart baby was SO excited to put some in this morning. Look at that face!
He is in PJ's today because big sister has pajama day at school, and the orthodontist. Mr. felt like he needed them all day too. I am about to go out looking like a bad mama dragging her kids all over town in PJ's hehe.

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Organizing Friday Week 3

This area takes the most abuse by our kids!

It wasn't too hard to fix up though.
First I went through all the shoes, again. We have lived here 2.5 months and already they have outgrown more shoes!

Then I just made them each a cute tag for their basket. Finnley sometimes has a hard time remembering which is his, or at least that is what he claims. No excuses now.

And yes that is the start of a wee basket for the baby. He will need a bigger one, but for now that little one we had on hand is storing his teeny little hats.

I was going to work on the laundry area next, but decided I should tackle the area we use a LOT, the entryway. Right now it is a disaster, a pile of stuff I need to take out to my car, and 4 drawers that have seen better days.

That rug is making me crazy! It slides all over, fixing that is on my list for sure!

We let each kiddo have a drawer, they can keep whatever they want in here as long as it's not liquid and won't spoil.
It's funny how different each one is. Ramsey has random change, his sports magazines, gum and iPod and a few random Legos. Carsyn has a drawer full of lip gloss, diaries and hair bows, right next to the grody flavored Harry potter jelly beans and tooth fairy $. Finn has more garbage and unsticky stickers than anything else! 

We don't make them tidy their drawer very often, as long as it closes they can keep it as messy as they want.

I will probably encourage a quick tidy of them though. 
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14 January 2015

Deeelish Mac 'N' Cheese

First I want to apologize for the lack of pictures. It smelled SO good that I think it was out of the oven for all of 5 seconds before there was a fork full, or 5, out of the pan.

I really never cook with a recipe because so many of the people here are picky eaters. I was a little more aware when I was making this about ingredient amounts!

A BIG bowl is a requirement and if the cottage cheese thing scares you, I am the ONLY person in this house that likes cottage cheese. I didn't tell anyone it was in there and no one asked or questioned it.

1lb pasta. I used elbow noodles
1/2 C Flour
2 Tbsp. Butter
2-3C Milk ( I didn't measure)
1C Cottage Cheese
1/2 C Sour Cream or Plain Greek Yogurt
1/2 tsp Nutmeg
Salt and Pepper to taste
3 C Cheese, shredded  I used 2 C smoked Cheddar and 1C Cheddar Jack
1 Sleeve Ritz or Townhouse Crackers
1 Tbs Butter 

Preheat oven to 350
While the noodles were cooking
Make a white sauce, a little thinner than gravy with consistency with flour, butter and milk.
Once that is done I added the cottage cheese and greek yogurt.
Drain the pasta
Combine the pasta with sauce
Add seasoning
Stir in Cheese 
Pour into 9x13 " Pan
I used my ninja to make the cracker crumbs
cover the entire top with cracker crumbs
melt the last 1 Tbs of butter
Pour over the top

Bake, uncovered, for 40-50 Minutes at 350
The edges get just a little crispy and the inside is gooey and super! NO ONE complained about dinner. That is pretty much a miracle around here!!
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