Friday, February 26, 2010

What's cookin' good lookin'?

Does anyone else cringe at those three little words,"What's for Dinner?" I am not a great cook but i do try. I enjoy baking more which is probably why my cookbook,and my butt, is very dessert heavy. I don't mind cooking dinner but it's often a challenge when you have two kids hanging on each leg, no one out there knows what i mean right?:)
Well i think as long as we have to get dinner in the oven every night or hey even dish up Chinese take out, we might as well look cute doing it.
I happened upon this fun Etsy shop that specializes in doing just that. Wonderland Avenue's aprons make me want to spend more time behind the stove. Take a look at just a few of the cute aprons in her shop......

This one matches my kitchen colors, yep it's going on my list of must haves.

And how about a recipe to go along with the cute aprons......

Chocolate Chip Banana Cake

1/2 c. butter, softened
1 1/2 c. sugar
1c. sour cream
2 large eggs
2-3 very ripe bananas, mashed
2c. flour
1tsp. salt
1tsp. baking soda
1tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 c. chocolate chips
1/2-1c. chopped nuts(optional)

Mix until smooth the butter, sugar, sour cream and eggs.
Add the mashed bananas and blend.
Mix in the flour, salt, soda and vanilla.
Add 1c. of the chocolate chips and all the walnuts.
Pour into a lightly greased 9x13 glass pan.
Sprinkle the 1/2 c. of chocolate chips on top and lightly press down.
Bake at 350 degrees for 40 minutes.


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Gurglepot (not to be confused with the Neti Pot!)

So i have to tell you all about the coolest water pitcher that i happened upon. I can't even remember where i heard about this but it was a while ago that i first visited this site. It's called the Gurglepot and one listen to the magical gurgling sound it makes and you'll be sold.
I'm not sure what it is about this fun little fish but i can totally see it being a huge hit in this house. Make sure to click HERE to read the story behind the gurgling fish pitcher, it's a fun story. I have yet to purchase one but it is on my list of must haves.


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Ya gotta have shades

What is it about the right pair of Sunglasses that makes you feel so good? They are very important for protecting your eyes and the delicate skin around your eyes from the harmful rays shining down on you, but to a lot of us out there, they are much more than just protection from the sun. They are a fashion statement and finding the right pair is so important.
Yesterday while driving to Target i realized that i needed some sunglasses on and i needed them quick. My eyes are so sensitive to light and especially in the winter months when the white snow is glaring back at me. Mine had broke and i had been getting by until yesterday. Here in KC we have had some freezing rain. The temps have remained pretty cold so all the rain we received froze solid to everything from the trees to the snow.....and then the sun peaked out. You know what that's like when sun is reflecting off ice?? Yeah a bit like shining a flashlight straight in your eyes. Well this was the case on the road yesterday. My current pair of shades had broke over the weekend so i grabbed the only pair i could find in the car. Yes i was rocking these bad boys.............

Pretty cool right? NOT. Boy #1 kept laughing and telling me to look at him so he could laugh some more. These are his awesome power rangers shades which look much better on his cute little face. I did snap a picture of myself on my phone but i was too hideous looking and will not be publishing that snapshot. Every time a car pulled up next to me at a stop light i had to put my hand up to the side of my face because i really looked ridiculous, but they had to be worn. Believe me i tried taking them off several times and the tears started streaming from my oh so sensitive corneas. I thought it was better to be safe than to look cool, and I'm sure i was right.
So once at Target #1 on the agenda was new shades. These below look similar to the ones that i got but mine are brown. The following pictures I found on line at

I tried these one's on and they were cute too but just a tad bit buggy for my taste.
These next glasses i found on line at they have a great selection. A bit pricey for me as i tend to break and need to replace my glasses a little too often but if i wanted to splurge i would buy from Zappos.

These one's are so cute. The Zappo's sunglasses section is cool because you can pick your face shape and they will show you styles that would look good on you.

And now a tribute to our favorite man in shades, the MAV! He made Aviators what they are today! How many years has it been and they are still cool.

Hope you all have a great pair of shades to rock! Spring is almost here, can ya tell I'm excited for warmer weather?


Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Creative Cakes

It is no secret that i love planning parties. I honestly start planning my kids birthday parties months and months in advance. I have already started thinking about boy #1's next party theme and he just had his party in November. I am a bit OCD when it comes to party planning.
Boy #2's birthday is in April, so really not too far away. I have decided on a Elmo theme, he is OCD when it comes to Elmo. I have been deep into looking at pictures of Elmo cakes. I think i will just try the basic Elmo head shape. I'm sure it won't turn out as cute as the picture below but I'll try.....

These cake pops from Bakerella are so cute, if we were having a huge party i might consider putting forth the effort to make these but it will probably just be our little family.

These next cakes are off of the Family Fun website. They have so many cute cake ideas. This first one is so cute, it would be really cute to make for a baby shower with a old McDonald theme.

This would be so cute for a pre-teen or teenager's birthday.

I definitely see this cake being made in my future. Boy #1 is all boy and would love this motorcycle cake and the skateboard cake below.

This one would be cute if you were having a bowling party. I love those bowling pin candles.

This one is cute for a camp out party in the summer. It would also be a fun cake to make for Fathers day if you married a outdoors man like i did. It would be great after a tin foil dinner and a visit around the backyard fire pit.
This is the cup cake cake that i made for boy #1's birthday in November. He had a G.I. Joe theme. I think the cake turned out pretty good. I got a lot of compliments on it which made my day of course. But what really mattered was that the new 5 year old loved it!

And now were back to thinking about boy#1's birthday next November. Not sure if Batman will still be his favorite 9 months from now but if he is then here are a couple of my inspiration cakes. The first one is simple yet really cute, i know i could pull it off.

This one would rock his world but i know i am not advanced enough to even try it. It's fun to dream though.
Hopefully i inspired you to think long and hard the next time you order a cake from your local grocery store. Michael's craft stores offer cake decorating classes. I am planning on enrolling next month. Hopefully my cakes benefit from the added skills i will learn. It will be nice when the end result looks as good in real life as it does in my head. I only got into cake decorating about a year ago but i have learned that even if it isn't picture perfect it feels so good to know you made it yourself, and your family knows it was baked with love, and maybe a little blood, sweat and tears.


Monday, February 22, 2010

Undercover Boss

Undercover Boss is one of me and hubsters favorite new shows. It's on Sunday nights on CBS. I wasn't sure if i would like this show but it has really surprised me. The premise of the show is that CEO's of big companies go undercover in their own companies. They visit several different areas in the company and see first hand how things in their stores or company are running. I think it's great that the CEO's of these companies are willing to do this to help their companies grow and run better. It always ends with the big man reveling his true identity to those he worked with and lets them know how much he appreciates what they do. No matter how hard i try i can't keep my eyes from tearing up. I think it's great when a boss can tell their employees that their work is appreciated. I think many businesses would run better if their employee's were shown the appreciation they deserve. Check it out if your in the market for a great new feel good show, it's worth the time.


Friday, February 19, 2010

Today is my birthday, yay for me. I am 33 years young and i am pretty sure that this is going to be a great year in my life. Since it is my birthday i thought today i would fill this post will pictures of things i love......
These are in no particular order but are all things that make me smile.

I love getting pedicures, especially with a great friend!

I love Hawaii more than almost any place on earth. It is so beautiful and just gives me such a feeling of relaxation when i am there. My best vacations in my life have been on the islands of Hawaii.

While i haven't had many in my life i have a new found love of great massages. There is nothing better than relaxing and letting the stress melt away.

Anyone who knows me knows that i have a purse/bag addiction. I love a great bag and have a whole closet full. I wish i had that yellow one in the back in this picture, so fun and would look great on my arm while shopping in Hawaii:)

O R E O! Yes this is a dirty little pleasure of mine. I don't know why they have to make such delicious little cookies, that are so fattening and that call to me at all hours of the day. I don't eat them often but when i do i enjoy every minute of it. Double stuff all the way!

And last but definitely not least are my boys. They make me smile on a daily basis. I am so grateful to have these three handsome guys in my life. They are everything to me and i know they love me for exactly who i am.
Now off to have a great day..............


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Neti Pot Review

So i have felt pretty crappy for the last couple of weeks. I am finally starting to get rid of this junk but i wanted to share with you the story behind my discovery of this thing called the Neti Pot.
I started feeling that tickle in the back of my throat on Sunday night a couple of weeks ago
and i just hoped and prayed but, it came anyway.
I hardly slept a wink all night, i tried and tried but i am not a mouth breather, you know what i mean, i can't sleep with my mouth open, i try but it's always a no go. I took sudafed but still the sinus infection plagued my every hour. I got through the night and had a little bit better night the next night. I at least had one working nostril, i was very happy with that. I know too much information but stay with me here.
The next day while talking to my neighbor she told me about the Neti Pot. "What i said, you want me to smoke pot?" No she didn't tell me to smoke pot. She told me about this nifty yet so disgusting invention called the Neti Pot. It is supposed clear out your sinus, which i was all about.
So i tried it and it was definitely very strange and pretty gross if i am being totally honest but it did work pretty well. While it didn't totally cure my sinus infection it definitely helped. Google it to see how it works, i don't want to get too into the snotty details. Oh what i wouldn't have done to have one of these years ago. I had REALLY bad sinus infections at the beginning of both of my pregnancy's. One was so bad that it was putting so much pressure on my nasal passage that it was giving me a tooth ache, weird i know. I was calling 24hr dentists in the middle of the night because i was sure my tooth was about to explode. It didn't and i was sent home with a sinus infection to thank for a unnecessary dental bill.
Anyway my point is that no matter how gross and disgusted you are by this post and no matter how weird you think i am right now, some day you are going to have a horrible sinus infection and you are going to think of this post and start searching for a neti pot.
This second picture is really uncalled for but i laughed so hard when i saw it i nearly peed my pants so of course i had to include it. And yep that's exactly how it works.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Picking the right dog for your family and welcoming it into your home.

I have been thinking about doing a post on this for quite a while. I am by no means a expert on picking the right dog or even being a pet owner but i do think i have a few tips to lend to those who are thinking about becoming a first time dog owner:

1. Spend time learning about different breeds of dogs. Picking one merly from the fact that they are cute or that they won the last dog show that you watched on Animal Planet may not be the best way to pick a breed that is right for your family.
In the March issue of Parents magazine they have a great article on picking the right dog for your family, check it out. Many dogs are great for families but awful for getting along with other pets you may already own. For instance i can never have a cat in this house as long as my oldest German Shorthair is alive. I would never trust her alone with a cat, I'm pretty sure it wouldn't end well for the cat. However many dogs will find a best friend in your cat.

2. Once you have decided on which breed is right for you it's time to decide weather you want to get a puppy(hell of a lot of work but worth it) or adopt from a shelter. If you have decided on the shelter adoption look in your area for shelters or possible rescues that have the kind of dogs you are looking for.

3. Make sure that you have the money to take care of your new dog now and for many years to come. While a dog is not too big of a expense it does cut into your budget monthly. Depending on which dog you choose will depend on how much they eat daily. For instance a huge bull mastiff will most likely eat more than a chiwawa. You also need to remember that your dog will need to make a yearly visit to the vet for shots and a check up, it's important and needs to be done.

4. Your dogs first night at home is a important one. If you let your dog sleep on your bed that first night chances are that's where it will be sleeping years later so be careful. State the boundaries right from the first second you bring your dog home, think about it and talk about it with the family before you go to pick up your new dog.

5. Which ever dog you end up choosing make sure that you have the time to devote to getting it use to your house, it's new surroundings and those it will interact with. We have always scheduled to pick up our puppies on a Thur or Friday so that the whole family has the weekend to devote to puppy care.If it is a puppy spend a lot of time playing with it and getting it use to it's new name. Sit in a circle with your family and put your puppy in the middle, take turns calling out it's name, praise it when it comes to each family member. With our last puppy my husband also took a couple days off work and spent a good long weekend on housebreaking. It worked wonders and after that long weekend our new puppy was well on her way to being completely house broken. It was amazing and she isn't the smartest one of the bunch.We also spend time working on the basic commands but we mostly focus on house breaking and leave the rest for when the puppy is a little older and able to focus better.

House Breaking your new puppy:

Every dog is going to learn at a different pace but a good rule of thumb is to take the puppy out to the grass or wherever you want it to do it's business about 20 min after it eats or drinks and many times in between. We always have a pocket full of treats and we go out (when i say we i mean my husband) with the puppy. When the puppy goes we praise the puppy and give her a treat and let her know we are very happy. When your new puppy goes potty in the house, and it will, don't rub it's nose in it. Take it over to where it went and firmly say "NO" and then immediately take it outside.Don't beat your puppy, they most likely will not know why you are doing this and you may end up confusing the dog and prolonging the house breaking process.

When we take our dogs out and want them to go potty we say "Go Toe Toe." That may sound funny but that's what my in-laws said to their dogs and that's where my husband got it so that's just what we say. But my point is to have a phrase or word to say to them so that they know what you expect out of them. Give them a few minutes and let them sniff around a bit if they need to.
Housebreaking is in most cases a hard road. But if you are persistent and really stick to it i think it drastically shorten this normally hard road for both dog and owners. My husband believes that positive reinforcement is the key to successful training in any area.

There are so many things to take into consideration when planning for your new family member. It's a important decision that the whole family should make together.
While a lot of days my two dogs drive me up the wall and i feel like i have 4 small children instead of 2, i never regret bringing them home with us. They really are two very important members of our family and we wouldn't be complete with out them. They boys love them and i know they love the boys. I had never been a dog person until i met my husband and he had us picking up our first dog the day we moved into our first house. My relationship with our first dog is very similar to the movie Marley and Me, one reason why me and my husband will NEVER watch that movie again, while it was a great movie, it really was so hard to watch, way too true to life and stirs up way too many tears for me.

The above picture as seen in the movie Marley and Me could have been taken in our basement with our oldest dog in place of Marley. She has eaten a total of two couches, one wedding veil, many socks, countless desserts stolen from the counter, too many stuffed animals to count and so many other things, i could really go on and on. But bottom line is that i love her and have really learned a lot from being her owner.
Our younger dog is a box of rocks but sweet as can be so we love her anyway. She has learned many habits, bad and good, from the older dog and they make quite a pair.
If you are getting ready to make a hairy addition to your family soon i hope you got something out of this post. Just know that your life is about to drastically change, give it time and you will soon realize that you couldn't imagine your life without that little,or big ball of fur.

Here they are...4 peas in a pod.They really do love each other.


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Love at first cut

I am in LOVE.....
I have really fallen hard for my new cricut machine. I have wanted one of these for a long time but could never manage to fork out the cash to take one home with me.....until last weekend!
Actually i got it on sale at Big Lots, it was a great deal. My closest store was out of them and i ended up having to drive to Missouri(it's actually not that far away) to find a store that still had a couple.
I am so glad that hubby agreed to take that little drive across the state line.
I have been playing with it for the last couple of days and i am now convinced that we can concur the world, just me and my Cricut.
All kidding aside this really is one cool little machine and i see a lot of kick A** scrapbook pages, greeting cards and school projects in my future.
Anyway i just had to let you all know and forewarn you that you may be seeing some Cricut related projects soon.

P.S. A big thank you to my In-Laws who made this purchase possible. Yes i may or may not have opened my birthday card w/$ a little early, but can ya blame me?


Monday, February 15, 2010

Chalkboard frame

Ok so as i have said in previous posts i have recently become friends with my local Goodwill. Only problem is that it's mostly a one sided friendship. I love to go and hope to find a gem that i can refurbish while on the other hand my local Goodwill has not given me much in return. I need to spread my wings and find more thrift stores and visit other Goodwills in neighboring cities. Mine is just not delivering. I am so wanting to find a great chunky sofa table to make my own.
Any who enough wining and on to the project that i did find to do. On one of my trips to Goodwill i found this picture frame, it's gorgeous right?......
OK so it was actually pretty hideous. But i saw small potential and really i was just itching to use some chalkboard spray paint that i had bought.
It was pretty gross and actually had sticks growing out of it...

But after a fresh coat of spray paint on the frame and some chalk board paint right over the glass, this is what i ended up with. Kinda cute i thought. And very useful for those important messages you want to get across to your special someone......


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Love Day

Hope you are all having a wonderful Valentines Day. I am very blessed with a wonderful man in my life. He is the love of my life and most importantly my best friend. I also have two sweet boys who have shown me what true love really is. I would do anything for those pinchable cheeks of theirs. I hope you all have loads of love in your life because it really does make it all the better.
Here are some pictures of Lovey animals. I am a sucker for cute animals, especially mommy and baby ones.


Thursday, February 11, 2010

From drab to fab - furniture refinishing

Check out this before and after makeover at All Things Thrifty. I'm not sure that i would ever have the vision to know what a beauty this hunk of furniture would be. What's even cooler is the fact that they do so much of their painting with regular 'ole spray paint, they love spray paint! The ladies over there are amazing with a capital A. I keep searching my local Goodwill but it's just not cutting it. I never thought i would say this but i miss the D.I. in Utah. I will not stop until i find my amazing makeover piece. These ladies give me so much inspiration......


And After, wow isn't it amazing!
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