27 February 2014

52 Weeks of Organizing~ Week 8

Last week was just counters and under the sink.
I did go through that monster basket of dish rags and towels, napkins and aprons and tossed about half in the donate pile.
I did decide I can add another garbage holder under there for recycling! We have just been stacking it up and taking it out in the evening. 

Counters are always a rotating mess/clean. 

This week is Meal Planning and Recipe organization.
Right now I have don't have a method that is working ok, but not well enough. Things are changing around here so I am going to try to work out a method that will be efficient for our new routines. 

How do y'all meal plan? Decide what new recipe's to try? Any tips to make it LESS time consuming? 
Or do you just not bother with it at all?

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25 February 2014

Meal Plan Monday Week 9

Sorry this is a little late! Yesterday was a tense day. I'm glad it is over and excited for the outcome!

Monday~ Taco's
I needed an easy night!

Tuesday~Loaded Potato Soup
I needed another easy night and to use up some ingredients!

Wednesday~Pork Roast
In the crockpot.

Thursday~Meatball Stroganoff
This is a new recipe for us to try, it looks good and has lots of pins!

Friday~Pulled Pork
If there are leftovers, if not. Chicken Stir Fry!

Saturday~Chicken Enchiladas
I hope I can make it ahead of time and just bake it Saturday!

Sunday~ Leftovers
Unless I really feeling like making something else! 

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19 February 2014

52 weeks of Organizing~ Week 7

The pantry, sometimes I dread managing it! It's not perfect but we have slowly been finding things that work for us to store stuff. 

I start with each shelf, checking expiration dates, making sure stuff is put back with the soonest expiration dated things up front. We don't want to waste anything. 

I try to group like things near each other. Breakfast stuff all together, baking stuff together etc. I think it helps me spend less time looking for stuff when I need it!

I try to make the kids stuff as easy to get to as possible. The kids snacks are all together in a bin where they can reach. Ours are old enough to get themselves snacks and they get to choose parts of their own lunches for school also.

Nothing worth taking pictures of. Same old same, just tidier  :)
This post about how I organize kid snacks helped shape how I organize the pantry!
Our snack bin is much bigger now but same concepts!

This week I plan to tackle under the sink and on top of the counters!

We have too many napkins, towels, rags etc. I never even get into those ones! Time to purge most of them!
Our poor counter is still recovering from birthday craziness.

What do you keep under your sink?

Shouldn't be too hard to take care of this stuff though! 
Hope everyone is having a good week! 

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17 February 2014

Shabby Country Fair 7th Birthday Party

Sharing the pictures I was able to get before my battery died of our girly's 7th birthday!
I wanted to go with a Shabby Country Fair Theme. Not carnival, but old fashioned fun!

I got these lights for a steal at Target on clearance a couple years ago, I knew I needed them for this party. 

I made this pinata, was hoping it would look like cotton candy!
Used some buffalo snow and spray food coloring. Both purchased on clearance!

Love love love the easy to make and inexpensive doily banners!

I started collecting paper and flowers that would go with what I had pictured a couple years ago! These little paper flowers were just right!

Pink Caramel Corn

Pie Fries, just pie crust, sugar and cinnamon and some edible glitter

Mini Pie Pops and cotton candy cookies

Ferris Wheel! I stalked this thing on Amazon for well over a year, just waiting for a deal!

Party Hats, with added pretties!

Cake, and favors to go!

We used the little plastic eggs for a egg race, on a spoon. Girls are cute!

We had a ring toss, so the girls could get a drink.
I used an old fashioned bottle crate, some of the cute drinks from World Market and some clearance glittler bracelets for rings!

Winner Winner!

Then we played BINGO. Bingo was always one of my favorite parts of our little county fair growing up!
Used little rhinestones as markers.

Then we made lipgloss! I think this was the favorite part!

We used little jars like this, and fabric to decorate the top.
For the lip gloss we used coconut oil, kool-aid and edible shimmer dust or edible glitter!

My sweet girly got a diary (she loves) for her birthday, and I don't think her friends were gone 5 minutes before she had this written down 

That sure makes all the insanity (and sometimes expensive) parts of birthday weekend worth it!

Next year.. I have NO IDEA. This is the first year that I don't already know what birthday's will be next year. I am hoping we can convince them to do a weekend birthday trip somewhere, the coast or something that requires less planning and less hot glue :)

My friend Michelle is amazing! She is super with a camera, even on a phone. I totally stole this from her instagram!

You can see the mini jam jars a little better in the center pic,
and the ring toss pop bottles!

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Meal Plan Monday~ Week 8

I am off for a few days this week, excited to do some real cooking this week!

Didn't make it yesterday, we had lots of leftovers still!


Wednesday~Salmon and orzo with asparagus
I just put the salmon fillets on foil under the broiler for 7 minutes per side with a little butter and salt and pepper. Super easy!

Thursday~Grilled cheese and ham sandwiches

Friday~Tortellini and pesto
Easy and inexpensive. Thanks to Trader Joe's!

Saturday~We ended up going on a family date last Saturday, 
so I am going to try the enchilada bake this weekend instead!

Sunday~Use some leftovers!

I am just excited to be home with the kids today, no school! Then a couple more days to get some stuff done around here.  Happy Monday!

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12 February 2014

52 Weeks of Organizing~ Week 6

Last week my goal was to get the fridge and freezer cleaned out.
Getting to it in 15 minute increments was the only way it was going to happen with our schedule.
First I checked expiration dates, that took a good chunk of time. Tossed a few things which helps make room to move stuff around to clean off the shelves and doors. 

The freezer is a whole other issue for me. I have short arms and can barely reach the back of it to clean. Just broke it up into 15 minute chunks and the whole thing including wiping down all of the inside, only took an hour. 

It's so much better when it's clean and organized. Now if I could get everyone on board to put stuff back where it goes, that would be even better. Not likely though.
We keep like things together, all the cheese in baskets, easy to grab.  The kids lunch stuff in a drawer they can all reach, eggs where the 4 year old can't reach!

This week my plan is to get this crazy pantry managed! It's been a disaster ever since the birthday parties! I just shoved stuff in there when it was in my way. Regretting that now. Along with all the stuff we don't usually have for birthday parties and at school birthday celebrations.
 It just needs a good purge, cleaning and organizing!

I feel like it is unlikely I will get this done in the 1 week time frame.

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10 February 2014

Meal Plan Monday~ Week 7

I did SO much better with last week's meal plan, although we had sick kids and were snowed in so I had a little extra time. I didn't get the turkey out though! And we haven't been ANYWHERE in days thanks to foot of snow and ice we got over the weekend. I am just planning on using what we have at home and hoping I swing enough meals.

Monday~Potato Soup
Check it out HERE

Tuesday~Make That Darn Turkey!
I like to put orange slices under the skin and just a little butter on top towards the end. Nothing too fancy!

Wednesday~Steak Quesadilla's

Thursday~Turkey Sheppard's Pie (using leftovers!)
For the kids, I just layer some turkey and gravy, corn or whatever veggie for the day, a little cheese and then mashed potatoes in a little ramekin. 

Friday~It's Valentines Day! I think we will get take-out!

Saturday~ Turkey Enchilada Bake
This will be a new recipe.
I am just going to layer some tortillas, turkey, sauce, cheese and probably some olives.
I am going to use green enchilada sauce and blend as much spinach in it as I can.

Sunday~Ham and roasted veggies!
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08 February 2014

Our Harry Potter 9th Birthday Party!

This party has been in the making for YEARS! I am so glad we finally got to do it!
I am about to bombard y'all with pictures! Happy to share sources, just ask!

Floating pumpkins
Dollar Tree Pumpkins, fishing line

Flying keys
$1 section at Michael's keys, velum and silver paper a wing paper punch and fishing string

Banner was homemade and clearance cobwebs and clearance Martha Stewart paper rats

Borrowed the Birthday boy's cloak and used fishing string and some clearance hats

Our "House Points" display
food coloring and the weird little gel beads that you add to water and they puff up, with some food coloring and Dollar tree jars

Took most of our usual stuff out, added some extra stuff to the bookshelf

Banners are just felt  nothing fancy

World Market had the cutest little owl cake pan, used to make these

Chocolate chips and edible glitter in a frog mold

Pumpkin Pasties and "frog legs" aka Pickles

Troll Ears
and you can barely see the Snitch Truffles

Cockroach Clusters and more of the snitch truffles

Warned the boys about these.. most of them were very brave and tried at least 1.. Poor girly didn't catch on and ate a Centipede flavored one.  

We used these Dollar Tree Plastic wine glasses and put a teeny bit of food coloring at the bottom, tried to make it not visible to these sneaky 9 year olds ( I got caught but just barely!)
They all had a glass and then I added an ice cube, or Crystal Ball 
used these

Added them to the glass, told them we were going to read their fortunes.. Green meant an allowance raise, red was finding true love...etc.
Poured some sprite over and the drink changed color! I thought it was fun!

We used the "potions" to change fortunes if they weren't happy. They were just poprocks

Gummy snails that were just cute!

Kept the cake very basic! Little edible gold stars for sprinkles

Not sure HOW he is 9!

Pensive Jello.. and dry ice. Best $2.00 spent!

Boys on a Horcrux Scavenger hunt.
Not sure how we get such GORGEOUS weather on his birthday so often. This weekend, just 1 week later, a foot of snow.

Making slime to take home in little cauldrons

After Cake and the mega sugar overload we had to send sweet friends home with some to share!
Some squishy pet rats, a Gryffindor candy stick and to test their bravery later, some Bertie Botts, I would never risk the chance of getting a "Canned Dog Food" one BLAAAH
and some hand sanitizer.. Dragons Blood

Also not pictured

Sorting Hat Bread, made a foil "hat" wrapped in caned crescent rolls and baked
and more of the Horcrux Hunt. Loved that part. These boys are too smart and had so much energy it took about half the time I expected!

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