Thursday, November 25, 2010

What I am Thankful For- and a FEW black Friday Tips:

My Sweet Husband- and best friend! He is so sweet that he is glad to babysit tomorrow for me to go Black Friday Shopping- now that is good husband material!ha I am thankful that he is a wonderful spiritual leader and that he loves to spend time with me. He has the most tender heart and I love the way that he is with our boys.
 My precious first born- Evan. What a Sweet Little boy he is! With a tender heart and out-going personality. I love him!
My Second-Born...Pierson Reese. One year ago- my little bundle of joy was 3 days old. I was probably getting more sleep than I will tonite (with Black Friday!) He has pretty blues- and a heart that is so kind and gentle. I love my little Piers!
 Thank you, Lord, for allowing me to stay at home with these two boys. I am so thankful that my husband works hard so I can raise my boys at home. What a privilege and honor!
 We took the boys to the park this week to celebrate Pierson's birthday. I am thankful that my husband would rather spend time with his family then go out to eat most days with others. This picture is precious to me-the boys LOVE their daddy. They think he is a super-hero- and I love they way they are holding to his shirt.
Also thankful for God's precious Gift of Salvation!- Both of our families- Church and Pastor- Young Couples SS Class and Close Friends! God has been so GOOD to us!

NOW for a few BLACK FrIdAy Tipz!
I have been searching for Black Friday Tips! Heading to Walmart to get a few of the Black Friday items at 12:00 am! Meeting my sis-in-laws- everybody better watch out!

I know that the Money-Saving Mom is going to get out some great tips starting at 4am on her blog! She will clue you in on the HOTTEST deals out there!

PLEASE don't forget to go through EBATES if you shop online!! You go to their website and find the store you want to shop at! They will link you to that store and keep up with how much you spend! They will then send you a check in the mail with a certain amount of percentage back!! Check it out!!

One more deal that Me and My sis will do tomorrow- There is a HOT coupon for Hallmark out- 10 dollars off 10 dollars or more item for Mom's only- so if you aren't a mom- maybe your mom will be with you??=) Go here to get that deal!

I will probably just print this Savings Coupon for 10 dollars off a 25.00 dollar item at Macys, too! My husband needs some dress clothes!

Lots more- but gotta get ready to GO, GO, GO! If you are smart enough gonna stay home in your pjs- REMEMBER to check out the Money-Saving-MOM - she will clue you on the hottest deals- HAPPy Black Friday Shopping!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Perfect Kitchen Desk Chair- Before and After

Swivel Desk Chair, Antique White

So, I was on the hunt for something similar to this PB chair. But who in their right mind would pay $399 for this chair- not to mention $29.00 just for the cushion!
When I spotted this chair in Goodwill sitting right in the front of the store, I actually walked right past her. I was thinking she was probably priced too high (usually the furniture right in front is always priced high)- so I kept walking. As I walked out of the store, I decided to check the price tag.
I thought she might be perfect for my desk space in my kitchen because of her wheels.....but I just wasn't sold. However, when I saw her 4.97 price tag- I snatched her up as quickly as possible.
 As soon as I got her home, I couldn't wait to spray her down with my Fave- Krylon in Satin Black. I could just see what she could become. After that dried- and a few touch-ups- I used my Krylon Gloss Protective Enamel in Clear. And within a few hours she was sitting right where she belonged.

 As soon as I placed her at my desk, I thought it was the perfect fit.
No, it is not exactly like the PB chair- but I like mine better because of her great price. She still has the wheels (which is so handy on my tile floors) and she is so pretty in black!
 Makes this area look so much more inviting and completed. And my number one critic (aka as hubs) loved it. He actually Thanked me for getting it and spending the time to shop for good deals! Now that's what makes this handful-of-penny makeover a success!

Now off to buy some supplies to make some Christmas crafts at my mom's for thanksgiving!  I am so thankful for the Family that God has given Myron and I- and I hope you have a wonderful thanksgiving spending time with yours! Happy Thanksgiving!

Joining up with some of these great parties!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

A Sweet Birthday Boy and a simple "How-to" for a Pumpkin Cake......

Today is my sweet Pierson Reese's FIRST birthday! What a joy he has been to our lives. He always wants to be hugged on - and thinks his brother is a Super-Hero! He has been a dream baby since Day One! You can read more about his Birthday Post here on our Family Blog.
Want another way to save money for your family? Try making their birthday cakes! Just like any mom would do- I love making birthday's special for my little ones. I try to put their personality into each one and I try to make unique things for their party decorations. I decided this year to make his cake and it was alot of fun. So since thanksgiving is this week, I thought someone might want to know how to make a "Pumpkin" Cake! (his theme was sweet Lil Pumpkin!)
Bringing a dessert for a Thanksgiving Feast? Try this!
I got the instructions here but I can give it to you in a nutshell.
Ingredients for cake:
2 cake boxes
(Just fix it like a regular ole' cake!)
Cook 2 cakes in this bunt pan and let them cool. (Pretty easy, huh?) Now, lets start making the icing! My High School Home Ec Teacher (aka as the best cake decorator in town!) gave me  her recipe. So here it is!!

Birthday/Wedding Cake Icing:
2 1b bag of Powder Sugar
1 1/2 Crisco (don't go generic)
1 tsp. Lemon Flavoring (she prefers Wilton's)
1 tsp. Almond Flavoring
1/2 cup boiling water (add until you get the best consistency)
*If it becomes to "creamy" when mixing- add a little more powdered sugar!

Here comes the stressful fun part! You will need to color your icing with food coloring. I just bought a box of Wilton's food coloring from walmart in the party section. Then, You will need a icing bag for decorating and a good star tip. (like above) Place the cake upside down on a cake plate and ice the top with your orange icing. Then Place the other cake right side up on top of the icing! The recipe called for a Ice cream cone to use as the stem, however, I didn't have one! So I used a Styrofoam cup! You simply place the cup in the "bunt pan whole." Don't worry if it looks crazy- you will cover it with icing.
Then, You simply star the whole cake. (yes, it took like forever.) I also added some green leaves, some "spriggly" vines and a scare crow sign with "Happy First Birthday Pierson"! There was no way I was gonna attempt to write his name with Icing!
You can get a starter tip set from Michaels! Use  your 40 percent off coupon!
If your child wants a certain character cake, they are so very easy. You just star them in and outline! We have a party store in town that lets you "rent" the pan for 3 dollars! (beats 25-30 dollars for a birthday cake!)
I made this Cake for Evan's 2nd Birthday.
I forgot to mention the enormous amount of clean up you will have in your kitchen.  But it's so worth it, right? Have a great Thanksgiving! Will be doing some fun Christmas crafts this week- check back for a neat idea on Children's Keepsake ornaments!

Happy Birthday, Sweet Pierson Reese. Linking up to some of these great parties.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sew Much Going On in My cRaZy Nest!

Sew, I have been sewing like something crazy this past week. I'm a moody kind of sewer- by that I mean that my Sewing frenzies come and go like moods do. Some days sewing is the LAST thing I would ever want to do- and some days I can't keep myself out of my sewing room. My boys have Loved the fact that I was in one of "those" moods this week. I have found them grazing in my pantry with goldfish and oreos all over the floor. Yes, they love it when I get in my sewing mood.

A friend of mine, asked me to make a cute cheerleader outfit for her 9 week old granddaughter- so this is what I came up with. It was alot of fun to sew for a little girl!!
I made the bows removable by sewing snaps on the pants and the bow.
If I posted a how-to on this outfit it would go something like this. "Sew it this way, No that's not right, tear it out- cut it off, ok sew it this way-"- Oh well, you get the picture. Didn't have a pattern to go by (or measurements!) but after many days hours of figuring it out- it turned out to fit her just perfect. (thank goodness!) I think it will be alot easier next time around now that I have a pattern!
I found two that show her outfit somewhat, but I was really trying to get her & didn't get her outfit that much... Sorry....  I'll send them both.  I think I'll have to do it separate...
I will say that I sewed my first "Pillowcase Dress" by watching a tutorial similar to this one by Mind Bites. I am so sure you could find how to do this all over the Internet without paying 99 cents-(I think its actually 1.98 now!!) but it was worth it to me. If anyone is interested in a tutorial- comment and let me know. I will be working on some this week! They are SO very easy! 
Maybe I can get some better pics at Thanksgiving! My camera was missing=(
The Pattern I used for this Longall came from Simplicity. Honestly, I no longer use a pattern. I just get out a Longall that fits him and go by that. I love longalls and shortalls on lil boys- but honestly, I can't afford the 50-75 dollar price tag from children boutique shops! So, I attempt to make them!
If you have a secret to get them to look at the camera at the same time, please let me know!
I really enjoy making them seasonal outfits that match. I usually order the appliques from this etsy shop. She is great to work with and is so cheap! These appliques would be so cute on a white t-shirt with jeans if you don't sew!
 Here are a few more shortalls that I have made for the boys. They definitely aren't perfect- but I am learning! I used the same Pattern for the Longalls pictured above- Simplicity
 Evan was 1 1/2 here!
I definitely am not the professional seamstress! I am just a normal mom trying to learn fun and creative ways to make clothes for my boys and for a few others!

Linking up to some of these great parties! Can't wait to see what others have "whipped" up on this Monday!

Check back later on this week- I have several Pennywise Christmas Projects coming up!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

I Heart Shutterfly

I have always loved shutterfly's products. They have quality products for great prices! I have ordered MANY things from them- but my favorite products are their scrapbooks and wall calendars! I am really looking forward to checking out their beautifully designed Christmas Cards this year!
Take a look at these Christmas Cards!
I love the colors of brown/red/and white together- with black and white pictures! So modern and classic at the same time. I could just see the sweet faces of my boys in that card!
Now who wouldn't love to have your own Christmas Tags printed? Check them out here.

My favorite product is their wall calendars! I got one of these for a Christmas present last year and I have enjoyed it so much!!

Shutterfly's products are great quality, wonderfully priced and quick shipping- why not use them this year? ESPECIALLY if you are a blogger- Blog about shutterfly and receive 50 Christmas cards for free- Click here to find out more!

Click here to see more Sizzlin' Sister Savingz Tipz!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Sizzlin' Sister Money-Savingz Tipz

Meet My Sister Jennifer. We are 2 1/2 years apart. I have been married 7 1/2 years and have 2 kids and she has been married 6 months and doesn't even have a dog. We don't have alot in common- yet we have everything in common. If you could see the texts, emails and phone conversations between us these would read and hear words like "groupon", "southern savers", "printable coupons", "ebates" and "rite aid." (Fun conversations, huh?)
I am not really sure when it happened, but the "money saving bug" has definitely bitten us. We love to find ways to save money and we love to call each other or skype to catch each other up on the deals for that day. SO- I thought that instead of keeping it between the two of us- we would start sharing things here at my new blog. We might even start taking turns doing the posts--thats if I let her.=) (I still have the older-sis-rights,ha)
ok. So I hardly ever post twice in one day- but I had to let you in on this one before they are all gone! So ready for a great savings tip that we both have recently rushed to Target for in the last 24 hrs?...drum roll, please.
Product Image Nick & Nora® Womens Pajama Set Collection - Assorted Colors
If you go to Target's website, you will see on the left hand side bar a link to push for printable coupons. You will see different categories and in the "apparel" link- there will be a coupon for 10 dollars off 3 sleepwear items. The coupon doesn't exclude clearance items. SO- in alot of Target stores right now, you will find tons of flannel pajamas and even some summer pajamas for 50 to 75 percent off.
We both found 3 different pairs and paid somewhere around 90 some cents total. (I will say if you live in my area- the clearance is a little slim-but you may find something!) Also- it is still an awesome deal if you want to buy 3 different Regular priced Pajamas for yourself or for Christmas Presents and use your 10 dollars off!!
One more quick tip to help you MAKE money while you start your Christmas shopping online. Yes, you read that right, MAKE money. You even get 5 dollars just for signing up! If you shop through a website called, Ebates, you can get a check sent right to your mailbox- or paid to you through pay-pal. Lets say you want to get this great pajama deal that I told you about earlier at You would first go to Ebates, find the target website, and push the link. Since you shopped through the Ebates website, they will give you a certain percentage back. You have to check it out!! Jen and I have really been excited over the money that we have made by shopping online!
Look for more Sizzlin' Sister Money-Savingz Tipz-- Black Friday is right around the corner and we can't wait! Now go get you some warm flannel pajamas! Hurry, before they are gone!

Julie's Favorite Things Friday

I love to read blogs. All kinds of blogs about many different subjects.....parenting, decorating, money-saving, family-life. To me, its like reading a few good mini-books before I go to bed. I have learned so many different ideas and so many new crafts and projects that I can't wait to attempt! When I see something I like, I usually just add it to my "favorites bar". Well, I have decided that every Friday I will begin a series on my blog called "Julie's Favorite Things Friday." I will share links and pictures of some of my "favorite things" that I have read in "blogland" that week or maybe just some products or ideas that friends share with me that have become a fave.

By the way, I really don't watch Oprah, but I did see on a preview that she is going to be doing her BEST "Oprah's Favorite Things" episode EVER because this is her last season. In the previews it showed people hysterically crying and acting Wild over whatever her give-aways were--I might just have to tune in to see what that's all about. Anyway.

Without further delay...and because I know you are just on the edge of your seats (insert sarcasm here)- Here is my First list for "Julie's Favorite Thing's Fridays" .......
   Picture of Creamy Macaroni and Cheese Recipe
1. Paula Deen's Crock Pot Macaroni-N-Cheese  recipe. Let me just stop here and say that usually when you see the name "Paula Deen" in front of a recipe you know 2 things: 1. Its gonna be really fattening. 2. It's gonna be incredibly good.  Looking for a new side to add to your Thanksgiving Feast? Add this one. Your family will thank you!
2. Love Southern Savers!! This is my go-to for all money-saving needs. Restaurants, grocery stores, department stores, gift ideas- go here and Jenny from "Southern Savers" will usually have just what you need for a fraction of the price. My sister, Jennifer, and I will normally call each other every day to talk about the deals that are going on--whether it be in stores or online. Need some extra money for some crafts or furniture makeovers? Go here and I will be shocked if you can't find one way to save you some money that week!

3. The Nester. If you love to read blogs about decorating, then I know that you recognize this blog just by the picture of her living room. This lady is a genius. Always decorates so gorgeous and simple- yet her ideas are always budget-friendly. Are you new to reading blogs about decorating? Follow "The Nester"- you won't be disappointed!
4. Scarves. Who doesn't love a scarf. I will be the first to admit that I have no clue what is "in-style" or whats the "new thing". Its just not all that important to me anymore. However, I do like to buy some things that are classic. As far as I know, I'm pretty sure that scarves are still in-style?!? (right, sis?) Anyway, favorite place to buy them? Target. For 10 bucks (maybe a lil more or less) you can get you a great scarf that will make any outfit go from dull to sassy. A few tips from my Sis (she told them to me when I wore this type. Gotta love in-style-younger-sisters)- 1. Don't wear them too tight around your neck. 2. Don't buy them too skinny and short. Yes, I violated both of those.  
5. Pink Fresh and Clean Lotion and Body Spray. I'm a very picky perfume kinda girl. I can't handle just any fragrance and I rarely buy anything other than this great fragrance from Victoria Secret. If you are like me, and can't handle strong perfumes, You will definitely want to add this to your Christmas List. You will love the smell and the price!
Would love to keep going, but I need to go finish the last load of laundry to bed! Would love to read about some of your favorite things in the comments! I am linking up to this Favorite thing's Party!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Easy and Cheap Kid-Friendly Christmas Crafts!

I have already begun transforming my "nest" into a Christmas Wonderland. I can't help it. Mainly because my 2 1/2 year old is all about Christmas this year and he is in love with the thoughts of Santa and a Sparkling Christmas Tree! Also, this is the first Christmas they we are in our home and I couldn't wait to see it all decorated!
I found this easy and cheap Christmas decoration/craft last week on a blog and thought it would be perfect for my skinny mantle! So on date night, I asked my sweet and supportive husband if we could take a quick detour to Michaels....and he agreed and talked on the phone to a friend the whole time even helped me shop around and drool over all of the pretty Christmas things that are already out! So here is what you need:
  • One unfinished wood frame for 1.00 (I also bought a bigger one for 4.99 but used a 40% off coupon!)
  • Mod Podge (ok, I am now addicted to finding things I can use with this miracle-in-a-bottle)
  • Pretty Christmas wrapping Paper
  • bow or ribbon
  • chalboard paint (optional)
  • some type of acrylic paint (however, I used red spray paint because I had some already and it worked great!)
  • scissors
  • hot glue gun
  • a cute little 2 1/2 year old boy to make a mess assist you.
Even though I once was a 3rd grade teacher (and loved it!)and had to constantly come up with visuals or crafts for my sweet students, I don't consider myself to be overly-crafty. But I so love to learn and copy good ideas from others who are blessed with the talent of "craftiness." So if you are with me in the ability to not be "so-crafty"- this project is for you! Evan and I even did most of it while I was waiting for this cheeze-it-chicken recipe to finish cooking in the oven.

First, you paint or in my case, spray paint the outside edges and inside edges with red paint. (or whatever color you want your frame to be!)
Then you cut the wrapping paper roughly to the size of the frame. Don't worry about getting this neat, you will buff the sides off later.
 Then you paint the mod podge on the frame with a paint brush. (sorry so blurry)
After you paint the frame with mod podge, you transfer the wrapping paper to the mod-podged frame. Be careful that you put it on carefully and smooth out the bubbles. Then, paint the mod podge on the frame and wait for it to dry.
After it dries, take a pair of scissors and poke through the whole in the frame and roughly cut out a square. Then, take a sander block or a nail file and lightly sand the edges. The paper will then come off pretty easily and you will have smooth ends! After I sanded the edges, I went back over the edges with mod podge just to make sure that they were gonna stick!

I let Evan help me on the second frame, and he loved getting the mod podge all over the frame!
I wanted this frame to be a little different, so I took the cardboard insert that came with the frame and used chalkboard paint to spray on it! This took about 5 minutes to spray and 5 minutes to dry! (You could easily skip this step and type out "Merry Christmas from the __________" on your computer and glue it to the insert!)
 Last, I hot-glued a bow to the smaller frame, and I added a lime green sparkly sprig that I already had to the larger frame. I used my chalk to write on my chalkboard, "Merry Christmas! From: the Scott's" and I added a picture of sweet Pierson in the smaller frame. (I plan on putting a Family Christmas Picture in there soon!)
This is exactly what I needed to sit on my skinny mantle- and for a handful of pennies I have two Christmas frames that I will pull out year after year and remember my Little Evan sitting on the bar and helping me! What great memories!
I have fond memories of doing crafts during Thanksgiving at my Grandma's with my Mom and Aunt Trudy. I hope to pass this tradition down to my children! Me and my sis were talking about easy and cheap crafts to do at thanksgiving while the family is together- this definitely will make the list! Please share with me in the comments if you have a great craft that we can add to our list!

Linking up with some great Craft Parties!