Thursday, April 4, 2013

Rainy Day Activities.

My husband sent me these ideas from a website the other day when it was raining.  We ended up taping (with painter's tape) butcher paper to the floor and let the kids color away.  Thought I'd share this fun list with you...

1. Find the thimble (Hide the button) -  take turns hiding and finding the thimble or button
2. Kitchen Band - use only pots and pans to make music
3.  Arts and Crafts  -  Kids Craft Club
4. Make popcorn and watch a movie
5. Make an indoor fort using a blanket and a table or chair
6. Memory Game- put ten toys in a pillow case and see who can remember what's inside
7. See who can hop on one foot the longest
8. Musical chairs
9. Coloring
10. Build a huge castle out of blocks
11.  Clean your room or pick up all they toys
12.  Walk with a book on your head for 10 ft.
13.  Take the Math Quiz
14.  Have a tea party
15.  Guess what's in the bag - put object in a brown paper bag and take turns guessing the contents
16.   Read a book to your brother, sister, mother, dad, sitter....
17.  Make a racetrack with obstacles and drive your toy cars through it
18.  Have an indoor picnic
19. Draw food items on paper plates and color them
20.  Play a board game
21.   Run in place for 5 minutes
22.  Do 20 or more jumping jacks
23.  Touch you toes 25 times
24. Read a book
25.  Make homemade playdough (clay) and build something
26.  Make a glitter picture
27. Make paper dolls
28. Make cookies or cupcakes (get a adult to help)
29. Make a rain gauge
30.  Tell jokes
31.  Play kid safe online games
32.  Have a Congo line
33. Dance
34. Make forts or houses for your play solders or stuffed animals out of pillows and blankets
35.  Be a super hero, put on a cape made from a towel or blanket
36.  Sing- a-long to a CD, ipod  or the radio
37. Sing Row Row Row Your Boat,  and Are you Sleeping Brother John 5 items each
38. Draw a picture
39.  Pretend  you are an animal, make noise and walk like an animal, try being a monkey, elephant, horse, duck and ?
40. Find 10 things in your house that start with the letter  "P"
41.   Play penny hockey on a table
42.  Build a house out of cards
43.  Play Mother May I?
44. Play Simon Says
45. Put of a play about your favorite movie
46.  Make a paper chain
47.   Make paper airplanes
48.   Play geology games
49.  Play dress up
50.   Put together a puzzle

Sunday, February 24, 2013

 Easiest Oatmeal Ever.

We're always rushed in the morning with 3 small kids...trying to get to the gym before preschool or other activities.  My kids loooove oatmeal so here are my tricks to making oatmeal (using old fashioned oats...not from the packets):

1.  Put oats and enough milk to cover them in a larger bowl (I use my bigger soup bowls...smaller bowls will boil over).  

2.  Heat in the microwave for 2 minutes.

3.  I can dish out oatmeal to two other bowls (one kid eats out of the bowl I used to microwave).

4.  The kids pick their toppings.  Some sweetners we've used:  agave nectar, bananas, raspberries, blueberries, brown sugar...they almost always ask for some peanut butter.  Nuts are yummy too.  I like to throw any fruit we have in the fridge in the mix.

5.  I put any leftovers in the fridge and the next day I add a little milk, heat it up, and they eat it again.

The kids get out the bowls and spoons so it takes no time to do this.  I have no problem making it even if only one kiddo wants it because it's so quick.

Monday, January 7, 2013

 A Suddenly Salad.


I feel like I get in the lunch rut and think something like a salad would take too long to cut all the veggies.  So, this is what I came up with...I threw a bunch of bags and toppings on the table and let the kids fix their own salads.  They loved it.  Healthy and yummy.

Here's what I set out (basically grabbed what I had on hand):
bag of salad
box of goldfish (I took them out of the stocking bag)
bag of almonds
cut apples and left them on the cutting board
ricotta cheese bucket

I used Dr. Oz's dressing recipe:
5 T olive oil
5 T vinegar (I used balsamic)
5 t honey

I put the dressing in a little Tupperware to serve and then stir for later. 

 These were perfect little pieces for the little man to eat too. 

This salad was just as easy to but together as pb & j!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Dried Pinto Beans in the Crock Pot.

Pour the entire bag of dried beans into a
colander and rinse under cold water. If you see any beans that have broken in half, or skin that floats to the surface, get rid of it. Also pick out any beans that look shriveled and gross.

Dump all the beans into your crock pot. Add enough water to cover all the beans and an additional 2 inches.

Cover. Do not turn on. Let the beans soak for at least 6 hours, or overnight. If you live in a very warm area, and the crock pot won't be in a room that is climate-controlled, put the stoneware in the fridge. You don't want bacteria to have the opportunity to grow.

In the morning, dump the water, and rinse your beans. The water will be bean-colored.

Put the beans back into your crock pot and cover with enough fresh water to completely cover the beans with an extra 2-3 inches.

Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.

The beans are done when they are bite-tender. Don't worry if the water hasn't all absorbed. You're going to dump it, anyway.

Drain the beans.

When cool, put 1 2/3 cups of beans into storage containers or freezer bags (you're adding this amount because you aren't adding filler-liquid like the cans have). The beans will store nicely in the refrigerator for 1 week, or in the freezer for 6 months.

Use as you would canned beans in your favorite recipe.

I found the info. for the beans HERE.

I used my pinto beans for our ...


half onion
can corn
2 cans beans of choice 
taco seasoning to taste
8 oz Catalina dressing

Just mix together and serve with chips.  We eat it as a meal.  So yummy!  You can also serve with green peppers if you like.  If there are any ingredients you don't like, don't add them.  Kidney, black, pinto beans are yummy in the dip.  Enjoy!

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Halloween Ideas.

This post would have been more helpful a couple months ago but I hope this inspires you for ideas for next year.  Halloween deco goes on sale so it's a perfect time to purchase some pumpkins to glitter next year.  I got a lot of my Halloween deco from thrift stores.  They have some beautiful items for cheaper and sometimes all they need is some paint, colored corn syrup, or candy to make it a perfect Halloween decorative piece.

Glittered Pumpkins.

I found some pumpkins around the house ( I think I purchased them after Halloween so I got a good deal).  Some had holes in them so I filled them with wood putty.  I brushed Modge Podge (Elmer's glue would work) over the pumpkins and sprinkled glitter on them.  I love the silver trays I got from the dollar store for my preschool kids...still use them for our projects.

I had two of these pumpkins that I bought in an after holiday sale.  I did one gold and one silver.  I painted one stem brown and the other black.  I think the black stems add a lot.


Bought this one at the dollar store.  Here is the before.

Here it is in a couple table settings I made.  These I spray painted and the blue one I added some clear crystal glitter.

DIY Platter.  I bought a microwave dish and a glass ice cream sunday dish from the thrift store.  I used glass glue (that you can put in the dishwasher afterwards!) from Home Depot to glue them.  I sanded the glass, spray painted them, and put on a shiny sealant.  I used it in the table setting in the above pic.

I found this bottle at a thrift store.  We filled it with corn syrup and purple dye.  The kids had a blast making "potions".  We made a darling one for Carleton's work...a bunch of test tubes.  I used my label maker to label them.

Here are some other pieces I put together.  I found items from thrift stores, a close out sale from Thai Pan Trading in UT, and the Dollar Store.

We took a Jeep ride through a forest in ID with my parents.  We found an area that had bright green moss growing on the trees (the kids thought they looked like brains)  I got a bunch of sticks to bring home.  Keep your eyes opened this year!

Cute Invite.  It has a little insert not "forgetting" the party.

Bloody Candles.  Just melt red candles over white candles.  I bought this ivy candy holder from the thrift store and spray painted it black.

I bought a wooden vine wreath from the dollar store.  I glued red roses into the wreath and then spray painted the whole thing black (still leaving the red showing...looks cool).  Lastly, I glued a bow and hung it on my door.

You have a whole year to put together your decorations for next year.  Enjoy!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Meal Exchange.

Jen can look this cute after fixing 5 pizzas!

I, with four of my friends, switch off cooking every Thursday (thanks for the idea Tami!).  Every 5th Thursday, I cook for 5 families (including my own) and the other 4 Thursdays are like free take out.  We've been doing this for months and everybody seems to enjoy it.  

How it works for our group:
-we, as a group, try to lean towards healthy meals (whole wheat...etc.)...and if not  healthy, yummy works too:)
-there's usually a side dish
-we usually bring our own Tupperwear and meet at the person's house around 5:30 each week
-you can give everyone a crock pot meal the night before to cook in their own crock pots (this was nice because I was out of town and it worked better with Carleton's work schedule to have everyone pick it up Wed. night)
-everyone makes enough for 4 adults (2 of us have 3 kids and 3 of us have 1 kid so it works)
-we freeze the meals for each other if we're out of town and it's easy to swap days because there are enough people that one should be able to switch with us.

Why I love it:
-I don't have to worry about a meal one day every week and we usually have left overs.  Carleton takes it to work too.
-I like to pick up our take out meal...every one has been yummy.  
-I have enough time to plan a meal that I can cook.  A couple girls were nervous about their "cooking abilities" but with 5 weeks you can come up with something.
-When it's my turn to cook, it's easy to even throw an extra meal in for someone that is sick or has had a baby.  I think I might even do extra to freeze for my fam for future meals.
-5 meals of the same thing is easier than 5 separate meals.  You just pick out extra ingredients at the grocery store (just grab more beans etc.) and use bigger pots.  The prep is easier.

I'm all about things that make my life as a mom easier and more fun.  This is at the top of that list.

Monday, September 17, 2012

"BOO" tique

My friend Tanya and I are having a "BOO"tique /yard sale on Saturday, October 6th at her house (1504 S Main St Corona, CA) starting at 7am. 

We will have Halloween decorations we have just created, gifts, and furniture.  Here is a sneak peek at a couple of items.  The wreaths are $20 each (I have 4 available) so if you want to purchase one before the "boo"tique, you can call or text 801-472-2666.  If you are in the Inland Empire or Orange County area, we can drop it off for you.  I will also be traveling to UT the weekend of Sept. 28th and could drop it off to you in the Salt Lake or Provo area-otherwise there will be extra for shipping.

The wreaths are black, but I left enough of the red on the roses to look pretty, yet spooky.  Looks beautiful on a front door or mantle for Halloween.  The roses were placed on a wooden vine wreath.


I just finished this black bloody candle holder.  The holder and candles together are $10.  Creepy and cute.

 I'm also selling this record player/radio I refinished.  It was made in the early 1950s.  The beautiful cherry stained inside, was left untouched, but I painted the handles and outside to give it an updated look, but still having a vintage feel.  The radio works but the record players might need some tlc.  This is $100.