Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A Good Read

I love to read! Not just anything, but I love to read Karen Kingsbury. She's an incredible Christian author that I just can not get enough of! After high school I went probably seven years without picking up a book and reading it cover to cover. A few years ago a friend of mine let me borrow a book called Redemption by Karen Kingsbury. From the first chapter I was HOOKED! Not just like "ooh, this is a good book" hooked, but "nothing gets done at my house while reading" hooked. The Tall Man actually joked about hiding my books so he'd have clean clothes again. Oops. =o)
In the past three and a half years I've read 33 of Karen Kingsbury's books. I actually have a list of all her books and write check marks next to the ones I've read.
Last week I finished Take Four.
Another amazing novel that makes me feel so close to the Lord I'd almost call it a Bible study. It's amazing! I love Kingsbury's writing and the characters feel like family when you're done.
If you're looking for a great summer read check out Karen Kinsbury's website and see all she has to offer. You can check her books out at the public library, pick them up at a Christian book store or Wal-Mart for about $11 (great deal!) I'd recommend starting with the Redemption Series. Happy Reading!!


Monday, July 26, 2010

Fun in the Car

Our family is taking a trip to Lake Shasta, California this summer so I decided to put together some fun things for my girls to do in the car. Here are just a few things I have for them to pass the time.
Personalized clipboards. Just like the ones we made as teacher appreciation gifts but with a little twist.
The back of these clipboards are painted with chalkboard paint! They can draw like crazy, use an old washcloth to erase and start all over again! No billions of paper scraps in the car! It's really a win-win situation.
I picked up these pencil cases at Michael's in their dollar bin. Brought them home added some stickers, pencils, pens & chalk and they're ready to go!
I didn't do anything to these, but I got them from Target on clearance for about $2!! Now mommy doesn't have to stress about the hidden dangers in a plastic water bottle sitting in the car all day. And we're being green! There were three different styles... perfect!
I also grabbed some activity books, stickers and card games from home for the girls to play with on the way and to have some quiet time once we get there.
I hope you're having a wonderful summer and have been able to take a little vacation or sometimes even better, a staycation!


Friday, July 23, 2010

A New Do!

I changed my profile picture last week. Then a couple days later I had my hair cut and colored. So in the past couple of weeks I've gone from this....

To this...

And now this...
Opinions welcome. =o)


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Tastes of Summer

Hey all! I was just enjoying one of my favorite summer drinks and thought, DUH!?! Share this drink with your friends in blog land. Do you like lemonade? Mint green tea? They are FanTaStiC together!
Here's what I do, steep a cup of Stash Moroccan Mint Green Tea for a long time (like ten minutes or longer.) I usually put my tea bag in, cover the cup with a clean dish towel and forget about it. The trick is remembering it. After ten minutes or so I pour the tea over a glass full of ice and add a scoop of Country Time lemonade and stir.
It is SO good!!! Try it!! You won't be disappointed.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010

School Supplies Make Me Giddy

I probably sound like a complete dork now but there is just something about pens, pencils, paper, all school supplies that just make me giddy. I've been accused that it's because it means my house will be quiet for a few hours a day when my lil chicks head out the door. This is not the case. I've always been this way, I LoVe shopping for school supplies!!
I was reminded of the scene from You've Got Mail where Meg Ryan talks about there being nothing better than a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils. I agree with her. Maybe it's because fall is my favorite season, I love high school football, orange, red and yellow, apple cider. *sigh* EvEryThiNg about the upcoming season.
Yes, I realize it's still July but inside Target, it's back to school time which translates to fall for me! Take a look.
Cute lil woodland creatures on notebooks!
The wall of backpacks.
This is a good sign.
Sea of colors.
Hanitizer (that's what we call it)
Are you excited about the upcoming school year? Do the long, oh so specific school supply lists overwhelm you or do you like the challenge? Hope you enjoy this last month of summer!


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Top 5 Tuesday: What to do without my kids???

For the first time in our marriage the Tall Man and I have five days with no kiddos at home. I am not sure what to do with myself all alone while the other half is at work. So I've been doing a little thinking an here are my top five things to do without my three girlies. (Mind you, this is if money wasn't an issue.)
Shop Til I Drop!
Hit the Spa
Sleep, Sleep, Sleep
Coffee with Friends
Clean... Just like this, lingerie and everything... Yeah right!
Decisions. Decisions. What do you think I should do?


Friday, July 16, 2010

How Does Your Garden Grow?

I think we can all agree there is just something about fresh, homegrown veggies straight from the garden. Last year we built a small raised bed in our back yard. We grew so many tomatoes we were giving away bowls of cherry tomatoes on a weekly basis! It was awesome to walk in the back yard, pick tomatoes, wash and serve!
Here's a peek at our garden last year. Cute, isn't it?
This year we're joining with four other families and growing a garden together. One of the families has some acreage just out of town and volunteered the space for the garden. We're growing all sorts of peppers, tomatoes, potatoes, squash and more!!
Taking care of this garden isn't like taking care of your grandma's garden. Weeding this piece of land involves delicious bbq's, Margarona's, root beer floats, surprise water balloon attacks and some fantastic friends!
Digging holes for the 7 feet high fence to go all the way around the garden.
Diggin in the dirt!
This is what happens when you garden in flip flops.
Margarona's.... YUM!!!
One of the husbands making steaks!
Do you have a community garden? Maybe something small in the backyard or even in your kitchen window? Don't you just love the harvest? I know I do!!


Monday, July 12, 2010

Home Again

My family and I just got home from spending four days at my in-laws house. We made an unexpected trip over the mountains to honor the life of a woman I never met, but have heard some pretty amazing stories about. Tall Man's grandma, my fave father-in-law's mother. You always wish to see family under different circumstances but it was still so nice to see so much family together. (I should add, the family I gained when marrying Tall Man is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!)
We saw Aunts, Uncles, grandparents, cousins, nephews, sisters, brothers, you name it, they were there. One of my favorite things was seeing my Tall Man and his identical twin together, these moments don't happen often enough so I love to watch them together when they do. I imagine life was never dull with the two of them in the same house.
Over the course of four days we honored an amazing woman who loved her family, saw a Mariner's game, swam at Lake Washington, had an outdoor movie courtesy of Papa and just spent time catching up and laughing with the people who mean most in life. Family.

Hope you have a great week!


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wonderfully Wordy Giveaway!

You may have been over to House of Smith's blog, she's listed in my "Blogs that Inspire" section. But let me tell you, Shelley does way more than inspire, she encourages too! House of Smith's is bookmarked in my "Ideas>Inspiration Fav's" tab. She's one of five blogs that I check every. single. day.
You may not have known she is also responsible for Wonderfully Wordy. There are some SUPER cute vinyl lettering's over there! Okay, so on to the giveaway...
I saw this morning that Shelley from House of Smith's is hosting a Wonderfully Wordy giveaway over at {Love Stitched}. Go check it out! There are several ways to enter!!
Good luck!


Tastes of Summer

Depending on where you live this has been a scorcher or a cold, wet summer. For us, it's been hot for three days, rain for six, hot for one, rain for three. Not very dependable or fun for summer activities. It's already July and I haven't made one "That's it! It's too hot, girls in the car, we're going to the lake!" call yet. Which is terribly sad, we LOVE the lake!!
Even though the weather isn't summer like, the calendar says it is in fact summer, so I'm breaking out my favorite summer time drinks! Woo hoo! There is nothing like an ice cold drink on a hot summer day. My favorite "8 am and it's already 70 degrees in here" drink is an iced coffee. If I'm heading out the door and haven't spent my allowance yet, I'll go to Dutch Bros. and pick up a large iced Kicker. YUM!!
Lately with all my half done projects my allowance has been going to Michael's, garage sales and The Dollar Tree so I opt to make iced coffee at home. M
y secret to fresh, delicious iced coffee are coffee cubes. When the weather acts like it's going to warm up I start pouring my left over coffee into ice cube trays, then store them in a ziploc freezer bag until I'm ready for them.
First I grind some beans and brew a regular pot of coffee. I fill my glass with coffee cubes and a shot of Torani syrup (my flavor of choice is Irish Cream) then pour the coffee and top it off with half and half. Stir it up and serve with a straw. The best thing about this is when the hot coffee melts the ice cubes, it doesn't water down your coffee because the cubes are made of coffee.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Tall Man Down!

I hope you all had a very happy and safe 4th of July. Ours was pretty laid back due to a rather eventful 3rd of July. As you know our laundry room has been a work in progress for a couple of month now. I finally painted a few weeks ago, Tall Man made me a shelf a couple weekends ago, we put that in just so. Next I wanted to hang a ginormous window a friend gave me (so sweet.)
So on Saturday my dear Tall Man decided he was going to help me get this old window ready to go. We brushed it down, he shop vac'd the dust, wood chips, cobwebs, etc.. We cleaned the windows with some Windex and newspaper then Tall Man took a blade and scraped ever last bit of paint off the glass and cleaned it again...
I want to pause right there and say this: A few times during this process I thanked my loving husband for all his he was doing to help me with the laundry room, but told him I was perfectly okay with it if he wanted to help with this later and go do something for himself right then, work in the yard, whatever. His choice. So is that clear? I gave him the opportunity to do something else a FEW times. Got it?
... After I offered an out (a few times!) Tall Man said he didn't mind helping me and we continued on to hang the window. Well, in the process of hanging this bad boy...
...this bad boy tweaked his knee.
When getting down from the washer and dryer the step stool slipped and all of the Tall Man's weight went on his left leg (which has had two surgeries in the last two years.) With a little twist he was done for. Luckily my dad and his girlfriend were headed our direction anyway so we were able to go to the not so Urgent Care. Based on what the doctor said we're pretty sure he re tore the meniscus he had mended in '08. Due to the holiday weekend we're stuck waiting until Tuesday morning to call the orthopedic surgeon and schedule an MRI. So there ya go. Tall Man Down!!
More on the laundry room to come...


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Last Minute Flag Decor

I can't believe it's July 3rd, I've been posting Independence Day decor all week and I've got a couple more last minute things to show you. Hope you like them!
First is a flag made with a 2x4, this one is made by my friend Jamie and she actually wrote up a quick tutorial for you!
"I used two 8", two 6", and two 2" 2x4's, paper, mod podge, and I actually used a little wood glue to attach them together, and then raffia. Oh and Cricut cartridge 'all mixed up'."
And here is the flag I made.
It's really pretty simple to make. You tear or cut scrapbook paper to the size of your blocks and apply with Mod Podge. You can use an ink pad to distress the edges if you'd like. With mine I crumbled my paper into a ball and inked the wrinkles then smoothed it out and put it on the 2x4. Easy peasy. And SUPER cute. You may have seen them over at How Does She? Those ladies have some incredible ideas over there.
My final red, white and blue project is a centerpiece for my dining room table. I picked up this place mat from Kohl's with my special associate discount plus an extra 15% off. I spend like $1.12 on it. Woo hoo! It's been sitting on my table all by itself for a week or so and finally last night, the 2nd of July I put together these candle holders.
I've been saving salsa jars for a while now (they're mason jars) and didn't know what I would use them for. Storage maybe. Nope, I saw a post the other day in blogland where someone painted a flag on jars and put candles in them. Brilliant! I've got jars, paint and raffia! So here is my version of someone else's good idea and my new centerpiece.

Hope you all have a very happy and safe Independence Day!!


Friday, July 2, 2010

Patriotic Porch

You've seen my new outdoor decorations and a couple of my 2x4 creations for Independence Day so I thought I'd share the rest with you. These are just some pictures from our home.
On either side of the garage door we hung this bunting.
Of course there's an American flag on the porch.
Welcome to our front door.
Just a little wagon out front.
You've seen my front porch crate, but here it is again.
My three helpers.