Don't forget to Pin It!


Monday, September 30, 2013

This Week On...

Fall television is in full swing now! I'm so excited. Some of my favorites came back, and there's a few new ones I want to try out as well.

But that means I've been busy.... catching up on t.v. and planning.

Pumpkin's birthday is coming just around the corner (how'd she get to be 4?) and there's lots to figure out for that. We've never had to decide about whether or not to include classmates before, and this whole "invite everyone so feelings don't get hurt" thinking makes it really hard to invite anyone. Our family's not small, and her class isn't either.

She wants an apple themed birthday party. All summer it was going to be "purple princess" (i.e. Tangled and Sophia the First) then suddenly... apples. Red apples to be exact.

Sigh... The minds of babes.

But, I did get to start my mantel!

Do you even understand how excited I am? Of course you do, I've mentioned it in almost every post!


We even picked out and bought the wood for it from Home Depot! I officially own mantle making wood. Well, my dad does. He's building it for me. I'm not that skilled with my hammer, screw drivers, and liquid nails. Can't quite cut wood with any of those.

We also got Pumpkin's "new" mattress in her room, on the floor, and ordered her new bedding and sheets. It's her second choice, but half the price of her first pick. And I've bought some supplies to work on the sunglasses frame holder and a new wreath. So, we have some projects underway. Hopefully all of that will be done for this week. Pumpkin's room and mantel won't be though... that's going to take a while.

So it was a pretty busy weekend for us, and I couldn't be happier about it.

Friday, September 27, 2013

Halloween Costumes

I started writing up another "thankful for" post. I really did. Then Brian sent me a text.

"Target just tweeted: Today only, Cartwheel users save 50% on Halloween Costumes"

We were just there last night!

Good thing the girls love Target almost as much as I do.

During the summer, Pumpkin was going to be a butterfly, and Snowflake, a bee. We already had those costumes.

Then it turned into Pumpkin was going to be a puppy and Snowflake, a kitten.

But then best friend said she was going to be a cat... so Pumpkin had to be a cat.

Then we went to look at the costumes... Now she's a mouse and Snowflake's a cat.

We seemed to be on a nice track of at least some animal.

Until Thursday. The day of said tweet. Out of nowhere, Pumpkin announced to G.G. that she was going to be Snow White.

What?! Where did that come from? She's never even seen Snow White! Kids!

So, off we go to see how many people read that tweet. Apparently very few. There were still lots to pick from, at least the selection didn't seem any lower then the night before. I pick out Snow White, debate on which size because we live in Pennsylvania.. there might be snow, or a hurricane, or 90 degrees out... who knows... And she wants Ariel. She also has never seen Ariel. Unfortunately, Ariel has a tail, and the size to fit over clothes is too long in the back. So she is back to Snow White.

Until she spots the glittery, tu-tu-esque Red Angry Bird costume. Yup. That's what she picked.

So for Halloween, it's official because we are not buying another costume, we are having a Red Angry Bird and Princess Sophia. And yes, Snowflake picked hers out and was spinning around while trying it on. I wasn't sure she'd let us take it off.

We spent $20 and change because of the 50% off and the use of red card. Can't really beat that for 2, licensed costumes.

P.S. I know the costume pictures seem random until the end... That's just how many costumes we have. The big group shot is the cut-outs of all the costumes because I didn't feel like taking each one out.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sunglass Holder Ideas

Have any of you seen that floating around on Pinterest? Or any sunglass holder craft design? There are quite a few to chose from.

There's this one from Magnificent Mayhem. It's nice, but I'm not thrilled with the chicken wire. Plus, I have kids, and lots of kid sunglasses... I think that will be hard for them to do on their own.

Then there's this one that's just a saved image on Pinterest using a hanger. I originally saw a similar version of this idea in Ikea's catalog, but either I had too many or something, because they all just tipped to one side.

Here's another framed version hanging the frame horizontally, but I feel like a similar thing would happen like with the hanger, and they'd all just pile up together and get caught.

I personally like this one a lot. Once again, Pinterest only has the image saved, so if anyone has the original posts for these pictures, please let me know.

Looks easy enough. My grandma gave me an old long frame similar to the horizontal one, so I think I'm going to try this method out.

There's a lot of other methods out there besides using a drawer or shelf, but I really like the idea of framing them. After all, aren't they supposed to be framing you face? Or something like that. I'll let you know how it goes. I have the frame painted and everything, I just need to get my hands on some non-Christmas ribbon.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Fruit Flies

This is disgusting. Warning... this is disgusting. I promise... it's gross.

Ok, so is there enough warning for you now? You can't say I didn't.

Anyone else battling this fruit fly epidemic? I know we're not alone. It was mentioned as KLG's favorite thing last Monday.

A friend of hers said to get a bowl and put bananas in it, then cover tightly with saran wrap poked with small holes. I've done similar before. Usually with apple cider vinegar, though. That works, but I've had this bowl setup for some time now and they're not going anywhere....
So, I thought I'd give this a try.

I wasn't wasting my bananas; however, my kids are perfectly fine eating half an apple at a time before needing to start a new one. Usually I just slice the half eaten apples to throw into smoothies, but I thought this was a perfect time to try this out.

I warned you. This is disgusting. I swear we didn't have this many before making this trap.

I'm pretty positive that they're mating in there and the babies are able to escape from the tiny holes. Hopefully they'll get back in there. But those are all in the bowl trying to get out.

It definitely caught them, but either they were really good at hiding before, or they're multiplying.


Any other suggestions? I need to keep them from mating, too. Maybe next bowl will include some dish soap. I heard that helps, too. Please tell me we're not alone. As far as I'm concerned, these are just less smelly, smaller stink bugs. Which have also decided to show their ugly faces. This is the worst part of having fresh fruit.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Home Goods

Have any of you ever been to a store called Home Goods? It's a part of the T.J. Maxx/Marshall's line of stores. I've heard of it and always wanted to go, but our closest one was out by our Ikea. And we never go to Ikea without the girls unless picking up bigger furniture. So, we avoided going so that we wouldn't buy anything they broke.

Well, that was part of my shopping on Sunday.

I fell in love with half the store. There are 3 rugs, averaging about $300 each for 8'x10' and a mercury/amber/metal pumpkin that I've claimed as mine when I can get them. I hid the pumpkin in the wastebasket section, so if you see it, it's mine.

I always wanted apothecary jars. I just think those lined up with cloches, candle sticks, and old books would just compliment any decor. But I haven't found any in a shape and size that I like for a price I'm willing to pay.. until I walked into Home Goods.

First thing to the right was glass. Shelves upon shelves of glass on display. I was soo giddy. And then I saw it. An apothecary jar. The glass was so fragile looking. The lines were so.. sexy.

And the price was so perfect... for next week after we get paid.

Brian gets paid once a month. He's our main source of money. Everything gets paid for at the beginning of the month, so taking me to Ikea and then Home goods days before payday was killing me. It wasn't a time for frivolousness. And I already bought stuff at Ikea, and the day before after watching The Wizard of Oz.

But that's ok, because right below it was one about half the size for half the price! Perfect!

You would've thought it was my baby. I refused to put it down. I didn't want it breaking in the cart or for someone to see it on the shelf... I coddled that thing. And after lusting after these giant rugs and the pumpkin, I bought it.

So now it sits on my fireplace waiting for next weekend when I can buy it's big sister. It's not alone. It's with my candle sticks and ghosts. And I've been playing with the fillers...

So this is what it looks like now. I like it, so I think I'm gonna stop changing it.

It's filled with dried beans and acorns from the yard.

P.S. for you locals... There's a new one opening about 10 miles closer to us! The grand opening is October 20th. I will be there at some point!

Monday, September 23, 2013


We eat out quite a bit, mostly on the weekends, but this weekend, we went out for a few different things.

Saturday, Brian and I went to see "The Wizard of Oz" in IMAX 3D.

Oh... My... Gawd.

It was amazing.

Anyone who knows me knows what a fan or Oz I am. Anyone who really knows me also knows I hate movie theaters and haven't been to one since Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince in 2009. So this was a big deal for me.

If it's playing near you, go (you only have five more days) . It's worth the price tag and the annoying other viewers.

But this post is about soup. I'm not the biggest soup fan, but I really like creamy ones lately. And I found 2 new (to me) favorites.

After going to see the Wizard, we walked over to Bravo. We had never been there before, but since it was a special day and all, we figured why not. As it had been raining all day, soup is what we needed. And soup is what we got.   (Below is taken from their site.. it's their menu description.)

Lobster Bisque

A rich, hearty cream soup finished with a touch of sherry and garnished with diced, poached shrimp 5.59

I could eat it every day.

At least that was until I went to Panera Bread with a friend on Sunday.

When was the Autumn Squash Soup added to the menu? And why didn't anyone tell me about this?

All pictures and descriptions also taken from their site:

Vegetarian Autumn Squash Soup
A blend of butternut squash and pumpkin, simmered in vegetable broth with honey, apple juice, cinnamon and a hint of curry, then finished with sweet cream and topped with roasted and salted pumpkin seeds.

Mine looked pretty close to that, just a tad bit messier, and I didn't see the seeds. They could've sunk by the time I got it, though. I paired mine with the Roasted Turkey Harvest Wheatberry Salad (minus the field greens and dressing on the side) and I'm pretty sure it was the best Autumn meal out.

Roasted Turkey Harvest Wheatberry Salad
All-natural, antibiotic-free roasted turkey, field greens, romaine lettuce, our wheatberry and pistachio blend and Gorgonzola cheese, tossed in our maple balsamic vinaigrette.

Those little wheatberries were scrumptious. But, unfortunately, it was out-shined by the soup. I think the soup had a little element of surprize that the salad just didn't. But together, it was a meal fit for Fall.
So, that's what I did. I watched a movie, shopped, and ate awesome food. I think the weekend was pretty darn good.

Update: I found 2 links on how to make a copycat version of the Panera Vegetarian Autumn soup. Click here to read about it and to get the recipes!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Snowflake's Nursery

All that talk about doing Pumpkin's room reminded me that I haven't shown you Snowflake's yet. She's almost 20 months old, and it's still not done. But it's in the running with the living room on level of "doneness", which will be never ending.

I took a picture of the door, but then realized that you can see her name. So, sorry, but you only get to see part of it.

Her room is a nice mix of old and new and new to us. That chair was a Craigslist find. $25 for an Ethan Allen wingback chair in all the right colors. I was sold. Nightstand: a $30 walmart one we bought for Pumpkin's nursery, then painted it. The rug and mirror are from Ikea, but the mirror is painted glossy white. Lamp is from Target. We bought it about 5 years ago for our living room in our apartment, but it fits better in here now.

Crib is from We had gotten a gift card, waited til it was on sale, used ebates for cash back (which I link to on the right above my "about me" section) and had a 15% off. All with free shipping. I think it cost us, out of pocket final expense, about $25.

The birds on a branch on the wall? It's a wall decal and it's amazing. I looked everywhere for one that was just right and I found that one on Etsy. You're able to customize it, but it was perfect just the way it was. Even though it was made to order, the seller was extremely fast with it.

Bedding's from Babies R Us, but is now discontinued. It was considered "boy bedding", but I think it works great for our little girl.

The dresser was Brian's uncle's (from the 70's?) painted to match the nightstand. The frames were discounted at BRU, we're a little behind on putting photos in ALL the frames, but we did manage to get her footprints in at about 6 weeks old. And the canvases are blank canvases on sale from Pat Catans and I put those wall decals that matched the bedding on with mod podge. A simple project, but ended up completing that space.

Frame matches the mirror from Ikea, same spray paint and everything. And it is a frame... a nice empty one. It comes in white now, but didn't 2 years ago. And can you see that hanging lamp? That's from my Grandma's 93 year old sister. I have no idea how old that lamp is, but when she said I could have it, I'm pretty sure my eyes were as big as that globe. Isn't it gorgeous?! It kinda looks like the moon at night time. We put it on a dimmer so we can adjust the brightness when needed since it's over the changing pad.

That's about it. All curtains, including the one replacing the closet door came from Lakeside Collection. The goldish ones actually were bought a year before getting pregnant for our kitchen glass doors, but I never liked them there and just hung onto them. Glad I did, because it fits in perfectly.

These hooks are Umbra, but bought from I can't find them anymore, but here are the over-the-door version of them. They still need put up.

Here are some of the little details:

 I need to find a before picture for you all, but here's a "during" picture. A LOT of work went into this room. It used to be a kitchen! The wall with the bird decal? It's curved and made of brick... because it was a fireplace. Where the dresser is, underneath the flooring is capped off gas pipes, and the wall behind the canvases was a whole for a window. You were able to see straight to the back of the siding. So we had to add installation. And the floor in front of the closet is slanted uphill. And the floor under the flooring we added was tile. I'm not sure what kind, but it looked like the kind you find in older basements around here. It was definitely a strange room to remake. And probably needed it the most.

None of that was visible before we dived in. They had carpet and a built in desk along the wall with the dresser. So my dad basically had to build that whole section of the room. Most of this got done in a month, too.

So I hope you liked it! Maybe one day I can finish it. I want to add a reading wall by the chair, and get those hooks up! And put some pictures in those frames. But until then, it's one of the more finished rooms, and I'm happy with it. And it's held up wonderfully for the past 20 months!

Oh.. the paint is Glidden from Home Depot, color matched to the wooden birds on the mobile. The ceiling is a whiter version of it, and the door and trim is a high gloss white paint. I'm not sure of what kind, It's what my dad had left over from painting my old dresser to give to Pumpkin.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Thankful Thursdays: Sisters

I don't have a sister. In fact, I'm an only child. I tend to attach to my friends strongly once the guards go down to fill that void. I've gotten better of the years, but when friends go, it's still hard on me.

As a child, I connected deeply with another only child in my class. We have a very wide variety of interest between the 2 of us. Always have. We've parted ways, reunited, and continued this cycle many times throughout our lives.

She's my sister.

I have a few other friends like this. You know the ones. The ones that you can go years without talking, and then one day you drive by something, think of them, then smile. And it's almost like they know you were thinking about them, too. Someone contacts the other and an hour goes by. Nothing and everything has changed. It's as if only a day has passed.

I'm so thankful for my sisters.

I'm even more thankful that my girls have someone to call a sister.

If my experience with my sisters are this strong, I can only imagine the bond that's forming between Pumpkin and Snowflake now. And I'm so thankful for that.

They always want to do what the other's doing. Always helping each other. Asking and giving hugs (even when the other doesn't want it then). It's wonderful to watch. You can see it started early with them, and I can't wait to continue watching these two be sisters.