Sunday, February 12, 2012

Our Winter Indoor Picnic

Nature Indoor!!

It was Friday, and I wanted my family to do something simple, yet different. A few plans had fallen through for that night, so I came up with an indoor picnic. My 4.5 year old daughter was ecstatic about helping decorate our living room.

We came up with some "design elements." flowers, sun, tree with apples, etc.

I was in charge of drawing on our colored construction paper. I am far from an artist, but my kids love my attempts.

My daughter actually cut out about 70% of the decorations. She was so motivated. She wanted to lay green paper on the floor for grass, but we came up with the great, grass border instead.

Welcome to our indoor outdoor family picnic area.

What have you done on the spur of the moment to change up a family routine? How did it turn out?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Resolution for Women

A Woman's Study

This morning was my second meeting for a new women's study on my base in Texas. It is based both on the Courageous movie and the book The Resolution for Women by Priscilla Shirer. We went over the foreword of the book which can partially be explained in her trailer for the book/study. I am looking forward to reading a chapter a week, especially since the length of the chapters fit my life perfectly...short. She acknowledges that women juggle a lot, and this book can fit into your life comfortably, but make a much larger impression upon it.

If you want to start this study in your home or your church, contact Priscilla. If you want to do it on your own, utilize her web information. I look forward to the following weeks. It will be emotionally tough, yet rewarding. Here are the 13 Resolutions we will attempt to "learn" and live out.

Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Newbie Mistake

Oooops from a New Blogger

Apologies for posting an incomplete draft, and then deleting it.  :-) Bear with me my email followers. Thank you for your support.

The Beginning of an "Official Chore Chart" .... Laundry

Morning Chore Chart
I have recently been talking to the kids about a Chore Chart. They got sooo excited!!! (weird, huh?) Actually, they feel very appreciated and valued when I ask them to do something for me. Sometimes they even argue about it, so I have to be careful to have 2 chores ready sometimes. Granted there are times they don't want to help, but strangely enough, those times are few and far between.

So our first idea was a chore list for the morning. We agreed upon:
Brush Teeth/Hair
Make Bed
Get Dressed
Put PJs in spot (laundry or under pillow)
Turn light off and close door

Then we talked about how we would remember that those were the morning chores. Of course, they said they could ask me, but I wanted them to be more self sufficient, even though I still help with teeth and hair.  I saw a door knob chore chart and wanted to make one. I want laminate it and then cut a slit, so that it hangs from the door knob in their room.  This is my first draft.
We'll see how this goes. I look forward to referencing their own door knob when they ask if they can have breakfast yet.  :-)

Putting Away Laundry
Another chore they help with is putting away their own laundry. Here are our family steps.

Step 1: When a laundry basket gets full, it is time to put it in the wash, regardless of the day of the week. Once washed, I bring it upstairs to my room and dump it on my bed.

Step 2: I then sort it into piles: socks, underwear, pj's, pants, shorts and shirts.

Step 3: My son then distributes each pile to its own place. Here is his bottom dresser drawer with baskets to hold socks, underwear and  pi's.

 Step 4: Linens get put in his under the bed storage drawer in sections for flat sheets, fitted sheets, pillow cases and blankets. As you can see in the photo, I use a folded shower curtain tucked under the mattress  to save myself/my son from having to change the fitted sheet so often.

Step 5: He puts his shorts in a shorts drawer with no real order, but his pants go in his pants drawer separated by school/church pants and his "soft" play around pants into the separated basket.

Step 5: He places his shirts in a pile on his desk. He is only 6, so I normally  hang up his shirts while he is putting away everything else. As you can see, I have not had "enough time" in the past couple of laundry days to get all the shirts hung up. If ANY shirt is inside out, I put them back into a pile on the desk and let him know he has shirts to "right-side out." Let's just say, that number has decreased a lot.

Step 6: Both of my kids absolutely adore pretending and dressing up in costumes. I love it. Sometimes these costumes need to be washed, so that becomes an additional put-away pile when I sort.  They both have wide,  plastic Sterilite drawers for their costumes. They are labeled with masking tape using words, but I am debating over cutting out pictures from a magazine to have pictorial labels. So far, they have pretty much memorized where MOST of the stuff goes. Pictures would make it easier for clean up time when friends are over to play.

Step 7: Replace the empty hamper in the bedroom, and wait for it to fill up again. I have learned that laundry is way less overwhelming if it is done more often with smaller loads.

I have always sorted laundry into piles to make it easier for me. When the kids were even younger, I made it a game to see if they knew where their socks went, etc. Their responsibility level in this laundry chore has grown and will continue to do so. I look forward to them WASHING their own, as well.

I would love to come up with an overall chore chart that is able to be edited as they grow older and we move.

Thanks for stopping by, and have a wonderful week.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

No Sew Leg Warmers for Girls & a Valentine Pill Box

No-Sew Leg Warmers for Girls

Sometimes my days are very unmotivational. Other days I am on fire. I have learned that for ME, if I am having a "fire" morning.....I CAN'T STOP!! I have to bounce from activity to activity without taking more than 5 minutes to chill. If I get stuck on Pinterest or watch a Tudors episode on Netlflix, my day is toast.

This morning, my dear daughter got dressed and something was missing...leg warmers that semi-matched at all. I have purchased some and "made" some. In Central Texas we don't worry about snow, but it can get chilly. Well with her chosen outfit, she did not have any warmers. That is until I searched through my stash. This is what I found.

This is how I no-sewed them.

This is how cute they are with or without some accompanying socks.

TAH-DAH!! Easy, huh?

Valentine's Day Pill Box

Off to school we went, and when I got home I cleaned the kitchen, started laundry and began to craft-lift/create this Valentine's Day pill box.

Supplies (very lenient list):
Pill box from Dollar Tree
colored paper/decorated paper
cutting tool
pinking scissors
hole punch

Step 1: Measure and cut paper to be adhered to the lid of each pill box section to cover the day.

Step 2: I used a pair of pinking scissors to randomly cut rectangles out of left over fabric from a wreath I made for Valentine's. I then laid them in the bottom of each chamber. I personally did not adhere them, but I guess you could. I liked the "nest" it formed for the treats.

Step 3: I then measured and cut decorated paper for the inside of the lids to cover the see through part of the day. Fortunately, I found a pattern where I would not have to cut through the hearts. LUCK...

Step 4: Add your treats and decorate lids with glitter stickers, etc. As you can tell, I am not Martha Stewart. I did not take care to use only pink, red, purple and white candy.  :-)

Step 5:  I then punched red circles, punched pink hearts, adhered together, punched a hole, inserted twine and attached the tag in two different ways. One is tied around a lid and the other is taped to the inside of a compartment and hung.

Step 6: Give to a teacher, school nurse, librarian, mail carrier, garbage collector, etc.

Thank you for stopping by. Have a great day!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Thrift Store Alert!!

Been There Done That meets Creativity

I LOVE thrift stores. They are not just to save money on clothing anymore! I have found myself reading a lot about thrift store finds that have led to super craft projects. Today I challenged myself to walk into a local thrift store (huge) and grab something to work with.  Here is a picture of just part of the area that has "stuff," not clothing.

To my surprise I bought FIVE things. Two are really related, so it will result in 4 different projects. I plan on posting step by step photo diaries for each project. I also have a sewing project I picked up from a local fabric store. We will see what my heart desires to do first, and I will show it to you when I finish.

Ideas for you when you thrift store shop:
*set a budget
*know your work space
*if it is not a gift, KNOW where it will go when finished
*learn the store sale is better NOT to see that fab thing at the "high" price and wait to see what is available on the sale days. (I got all my pieces for half off.)
*for specific projects for frames, etc., measure before you go!!!
*take step by step photos, so someday you can share, OR you can remind yourself. :-)

Nothing motivates me more than seeing a positive change in something...people or objects.  Find something to improve (yourself??), and go for it.

San Antonio's Big Lou's Pizza....WOW!

A big pizza WOW

This is not a paid commercial by any means. I had heard of Big Lou's Pizza and thought, "Okay, this is another mom & pop operation selling pizza." Then I heard it had been on the Travel Channel's Man vs Food. Hmmmm, interesting. Then last night, I went with some military spouses and ordered their 42" pizza. Yes, 42" pizza.

After we were able to gain functionality of our dropped jaws, we dug in. We literally had to fold a single slice 2 times to eat it. Some even used 2 plates. Nine adults and 5 kids under 8 years old waited over an hour for this pizza and almost finished it in about 25 minutes.

Aside from the uniqueness of its size, I do have to add that it was a pretty, darn good pizza. I don't think I will return very soon, but I will return...with as many people as I can take with me.

My family normally tries to eat well, so this was definitely a treat I will remember.