Monday, December 5, 2011

Wow...its been a while!!

So sorry its been so long!!
I decided to only keep up with my family blog since our lives with our family and ministry are just too busy to keep up with 2 blogs!

But, I did want to ask for you help. A dear sweet family, the Groeneveld's, lost their home on Saturday morning due to a fire. You can read their story on my blog. I put a link to her blog there!

Thanks so much!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Buffalo Chicken Dip

A friend of mine recently gave me this awesome Recipe for Buffalo Chicken Dip! I love it!


2 8oz Cream Cheese
1/2 cup of Ranch Dressing
3/4 cup of Texas Pete
2 cups of Chicken Cubed or Shredded
2 1/2 cups of Cheese
  1. I cooked the chicken in the microwave for 9-10 minutes then cut it into cubes
  2. Mix the cream cheese, ranch dressing, texas pete, chicken and half of the cheese together.
  3. Put it in a 9x13 or crock pot then sprinkle the rest of the cheese on top.
  4. Cook on 350 for 20 minutes.

Serve with Tortilla chips or Crackers.

If you love Hot stuff- this is for you! My new favorite Dip!

Friday, February 4, 2011

One Thousand Gifts

I have really enjoyed this book (so far) and it has already made a difference in the way I view everyday life.  I seem to live in the "fast lane" in life, getting things done (in a hurry), getting the boys dressed (in a hurry), getting supper on the table (in a hurry), and getting the boys to Sunday School (in a hurry). 
Nothing in life, really worth-while happens in a hurry.
I'm afraid I have a tendency not to "stop and smell the roses" but to hurriedly take a glance at them as a I jog through life. Everyday when I wake up, I want to count my blessings. Count the ways that Jesus has shown that He loves me by all the beauty that surrounds me. He has created all of these things in life, even the simplest of things, just for me. To show me that He loves me.

I found out about the Bloom Book Club by reading "Bring the Rain" by Angie Smith. If you would like to join in, click here for more information.

Disclaimer: I do not agree with the author's view of theology in chapter 2. However, I can glean great information from the rest of the book.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Couponing not for you? Then why not Try this......

We all know that using coupons takes a lot of time. Sometimes if I don't have all my coupons organized and together, I just get frustrated and go to Walmart without any at all.
With 2 little boys in the cart ages 2 and 1, coupons aren't always the easiest thing for me to use! I am just trying to get through Walmart without leaving a Goldfish trail. (this is why now I almost always go at night after the boys are asleep- do you blame me?)

If you aren't a couponing mom, don't give up. Just use cash. Make a list, add it up roughly before you go, bring a calculator, and use cash. No more cash in my envelope at the end of the month? Then I guess we all will starve.=/
The envelope system--it really works!
I think using cash regularly for groceries will really help our family. I have found that it is alot harder for me to spend that cash then to swipe my debit.

Hope this helps you! Check out her other tips here!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Finally....a cute BOY sewing project!

Most of you know that I have two sweet and adorable boys, Evan (almost 3) and Pierson (14 months). I love to sew for them, but we all know that sewing for boys is just not as fun as sewing for girls! No frills and ruffles in this house!!
So when I saw this ADORABLE tutorial on how to make little boy's ties, my heart skipped a beat!

I think I just found me another project to add to my list for next week! I can't wait to find the perfect material for a few matching ties for this summer! (or I could just buy them some matching ties at The Children's Place?--but this is so much more fun, right!)

Now, if I could just have a little girl to coordinate her dress with their ties! Have to talk to the hubby about that one!ha Until then, maybe we can coordinate with my adorable niece!

real life is happening around here- organizing, cleaning out, 2 boys with fevers, laundry, mom group, cooking, family, teaching piano, and church ministry. Know what i mean?

Maybe my life will be back to normal soon and time for projects won't be so sparse!!- looking forward to a nice trip to the beach this weekend with my hubby and close friends for a couples retreat!! Yay for some alone time!!

Have little boys in your life? Go check out this tutorial! Did I mention there is no sewing machine involved?

Friday, January 21, 2011

Friday FaVes- a book, some recipes and a decorating Blog

Sharing with you some Friday Faves! Happy Weekend Everyone!
My dad gave all of us  this book for Christmas. Its one of those books that is life-changing. It is easy to read and so convicting!
These Cream Cheese Squares are so good and easy! Adding a little bit of cinnamon and sugar to the top would make these even better for my sugar-lovin' boys!
Twirly Whirly Pizza Roll-Ups. This is one of those recipes that you might want to wait until your husband is out of town! Or if your lucky like me and have a husband who LOVES pizza, then this kid-friendly recipe is for you. Look for the recipe here on one of my favorite blogs.
cover feature young house love on the nest magazine
Looking for another Decorating Blog to read? Hop on over to Young House Love! I really love how they take older houses and remodel them. View their first makeover-home here!
Myron and I love to have Mexican on most Saturday Nights.  Its just a great time to have chips/dips, quesadillas, and try out a new mexican recipe while watching football the boys play!  This dip, "Paula Deen's Touchdown Taco Dip", is so awesome! My aunt first made it and we love it! ---its super easy,too! (We do NOt add all of the extra ingredients in the pic to our dip--so don't let that scare you off!)

1 8oz cream cheese
1 pack of taco seasoning
Cheese (enough to cover the top)
1 Can of Refried Beans
1 4oz sour cream (optional)
Little bit of Salsa (optional)
Tomatoes (optional)
Whatever else you want to add

  • Pre-heat oven to 350
  • Spray a casserole dish with Pam
  • Mix cream cheese and taco seasoning
  • Add sour cream (optional)
  • Pour this mixture into bottom of pan
  • add beans
  • add salsa
  • add cheese
  • add other toppings
  • cook in oven for 20 minutes or until everything is melted.
  • did I miss something, Aunt Kristi?
Awesome recipe- easy, cheap and so good!

One of my new Mexican Recipes (that I will share soon) is from my newly-wed sis, Jen. She has been cooking up a storm and lets me know when she finds a good recipe. This one is a keeper.
Doesn't it look good! Its not your typical "mexican" taste--so comforting and good!!
Look for it soon---
Easy Creamy Cheesy Chicken enChiladas. (I've made it twice in 2 weeks, it was that good and my boys loved it!)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Hot Deal--Hurry Fast!!

Today's Deal For Living Social is a 20 dollar gift card to Amazon for 10.00!! I have bought tons of things on Amazon for Awesome Steals this year!! Including 12 packs of toilet paper for free! (using my swagbucks and they were running an awesome deal!!) I also have bought toys, books, diapers....they really have about anything you want!!
Anyway---just thought I would share! If you want this deal you better hurry up---the quatities are limited!!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Sizzlin Sister Steals

I have 2 hot steals that I wanted to share with you all. Have you ever heard of  Eversave? I heart Eversave! Every day they post awesome coupons that you can purchase! (kind of like Groupon) I bought most of my Christmas presents this past year using Eversave and Groupon!

Eversave - Share the Save
Who doesn't need (want!) a Personalized Photo calendar, for FREE!?

 (Actually you are making 1.00 because they give you 2.00 just for signing up! This calendar is advertised for 1.00 plus you get half off shipping!)

I have bought several of these personalized Photo Calendars! Go check them out!
When my sister called me about this Eversave, I think my heart skipped a beat. I have been looking for a personalized necklace that I could have my boys name engraved on for a while. So for 12.00 you get 30.00 worth of product!
happy birthday circle
Isn't this "Birthday Circle" adorable? I love it!!
to have and hold
I love this one, too!!
praying for my soldier
We have alot of military couples in my SS class whose spouses are deployed--I love this one, too!

A few more reasons I heart Eversave:
1. You can personalize the eversave to the area that you live in!
2. You can get bonus rewards when referring! (help me, people!)
3. You can upload the deals you see on Facebook.
4. Eversave has a great variety of every day items that we all love!!

So, Go checkout these great Steals at Eversave!!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Favorite Paint Colors PaRtY!

I love her Pottery-Barn Style Home
 My friend, Julie is having a Paint Colors Linky Party! So I thought I would share some of my favorite Paint Colors!
When we first bought our fixer-upper in July, I stressed alittle to think about all the decisions I needed to make. First person on my list to call was my decorator-friend Melissa! I loved her home and her colors and trusted her judgement. The next few pictures are of her beautiful home!
 Great Khaki Color: Benjamin Moore: Greenbrier Beige. Its that perfect khaki neutral color.
 Beautiful Blue for her dining room! Benjamin Moore: Adago
Her eat-in Kitchen area: Benjamin Moore- Copley Gray  
What a beautiful gray!
Wish I would've taken more pictures of her beautiful home!
Other colors in her home:
Benjamin Moore: Philipsburg Blue
Benjamin Moore: Shenandoah Taupe
 So, I asked Melissa to come to my house and these are the colors we came up with and I love them all. Blues, Grays, Greens and Nuetral.
I really love this khaki: It is Eddie Bauer Barley. Really, it is the perfect color khaki match-up to my friend's Benjamin Moore Greenbrier Beige.
Neutral yet a little color. Myron tends to love darker colors, however he really liked this nuetral khaki.
 One of my favorite rooms is my dining room. I love this gray! It is Eddie Bauer Beach. To me, it is a true gray. (this room is not finished- working on adding more shelves and I just noticed one of the chairs is missing!ha)
 I also used the Eddie Bauer Beach in my master bedroom. This room still has a ways to go- but I love the contrast of chocolate and white with my gray walls!
I really want to add a chaise or chair and ottomon across from the bed in the corner, or a nice chair by the bed. Still looking for a deal!
I am really hating that I haven't taken a picture since I took the tree down, but oh well. By far my most favorite room in the house! I love this color! I can't take the credit. Melissa spotted this color and we knew it was the one. It really looked like a gray- but its a blue gray. Really the pefect blue for a room.
It is called Valspar Restless Seas.
I love how it opens up to the living room. This is where we have the piano and for right now some of the boys smaller toys. One day this will become a home office.

This room is still in the process, but we are working on it. I LOVE this green. It is still neutral but yet kindof fun for the boys playroom and my craft room.  This color is Valspar Homestead Resort Parlor Sage.
 I still have a few more colors- but the boys are up from their naps. Hoping to link up later on in the week with more fun colors!

Go check out Julie's Paint Colors Linky Party! I'm sure there will be alot of beautiful colors to choose from!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Does your Nest always stay Clean? If so, please come sign my dust pan.

Don't we all wish we could be her?
That's impossible, right? Well maybe not.

Everyday my "to-do" cleaning list is filled to the brim and cleaning is not something that I just love to do. However, it must get done. It was something that I was always doing, yet for some reason it wasn't staying that way! 
"Evan, why are there crushed goldfish on the floor?" (after I just vacuumed!)
"Pierson! I just cleaned up this playroom--why must you dump out every container of toys! (just right after we organized it!!)
Wanna get organized? Get a schedule!
I wanted to do something different this year- free up more time to spend with my boys, do more fun craft and sewing projects, scrapbook, try new recipes, have pre-school with Evan, have new moms come to my house for a playdate, have more time to read and to find creative ways to make my home a fun and happy place to be.

But, the reality of it is- is that I am a mom of 2 boys that are 19 months apart and Boys will be Boys!

But, to keep my sanity- I needed a plan. Well, with this housekeeping plan (adapted-julie-style) it seems to be working. It's not that fun the first few days but it is getting to where my house seems to be staying clean for 1 hr.  My husband has remarked how he really likes this plan. Every morning before he leaves for work I might say, "Have a good day, hon--today I will be deep cleaning all the bedrooms!" (You know- just to let him know that I won't be watching tv and blogging all day!HA HA)

One of the best (and most common sense) tips that I read was to pick up around the house 10 minutes after each meal. WOW what a difference this has made in our house! My husband even helps me! I also have this schedule on my fridge to remind me what I will be doing that day and what needs to get done!

So, have you decided that you need someone to help you better organize your cleaning schedule? Go here to read more tips and adapt her schedule to your lifestyle.

Your family will thank you. Your husband will think your nuts (but secretly love it). And you will sleep much better at night knowing your house is somewhat  sparkling clean!

So, what is your best kept secret cleaning tip? Please do tell!
(REALITY ALERT: ok realistically I need to get up right now and go pick up, straighten the play room, do another load of laundry and pick up the bath toys off the floor! But hey, I'm trying and it has really helped me! Alot.)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Better-than-Logan's Potato Soup Recipe

Have you ever had the Potato Soup from Logan's Roadhouse? If you haven't- don't worry about going- just make this one instead! Now, it is very hard to beat Logan's but I will say if this recipe doesn't beat it- it is a close 2nd.
This Potato Soup is one of those recipes that I love to bring out often! We love it around here, and we love to pair it with grilled cheese. It's quick and easy, and you probably have most of these ingredients already! I love my mom's recipe, I love my friend, Lauren's, I added a few things myself and that's how this one came about. So here you go. (by the way, nobody really has "measurements" here so I'm doing my best with the details. Don't worry- you can't really mess this up!)

Better than Logan's Potato Soup
4-5 Potatoes
2 cups of Milk
1 Stick Butter
2 oz Cream Cheese
1 Can of Cream of Chicken
1 Can of Chicken Broth
2-3 Tablespoons of Flour
1-2 Cups of Cheese
1/2 Cup of Sour Cream
1 Bag of Real Bacon Bits (or you can use real bacon and crumble)
Optional: Toppings- Crumbled Bacon, Cheese and Sour cream

Don't Let the list of Ingredients Scare you---this is really a fool-proof recipe.
1. In a Large Pot, pour 1 can of cream of chicken broth and 1 can of Cream of Chicken Soup. (*If you don't want your soup too creamy- then just add half of the can) Put on High Heat and Bring to a boil. If mixture seems too thick, add a little bit of water or milk.
2. Peal and Dice your Potatoes into cubes and place in the pot to cook.
3. After your potatoes have cooked, lay to the side. (You will need to watch this and make sure they don't burn. Add a little bit of water to the mixture if it becomes too thick.)
4. Cut your Cream Cheese into chunks and place in the microwave for 10-20 seconds to make creamy.
5. In a Big Soup Pot, add your 1 stick of butter on Med Heat. While the butter is melting, add your cream cheese mixture and whisk. When Melted and mixed together, add your 2-3 Tablespoons of Flour and whisk until it becomes a thick mixture.
6. Then add your milk, sour cream, cheese and bacon bits. A little bit of salt and pepper. Whisk until it becomes a thick mixture on med-high heat. You will want this to thicken up a little.
7. Add your potato mixture to the big soup pot and let simmer on med heat.
8. Honestly, this soup can be done right then or you can let it simmer for 20-30 minutes.
9. Top it with a little cheese, bacon bits and sour cream and your family will thank you.

One thing I would love to try this year, is a new recipe every 2 weeks. If you have a great-fool-proof recipe for supper, please share.

Last night, the menu was country-fried venison. (hey, my husband killed the deer and begged me to cook it) It actually was decent pretty good. I'm sure my inbox will be flooded with requests for that recipe. (insert sarcasm here)

Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Loft Knockoff Necklace

Necklaces like this sale for 40 dollars from the Loft!!
I love the Loft. We live near an outlet, and it has become my most favorite store. I love the way they are designing necklaces, belts, cardigans and all kinds of accessories with flowers! When I saw this  post on how to make one, I knew I had to try it!
First, You decide on the fabric you will want to use to make your roses. I loved the houndstooth fabric because I am such a black-and-white kinda girl (and it was already in my sewing stash). You need something sturdier to put the roses on like felt or a thin piece of cardboard. I cut the cardboard to the size that I wanted my rose to be.  I then cut 7 circles per rose. I hot glued the fabric to the back and front of the rose, then used the remaining five circles to create the rose. I then added a pearl in the middle of each rose.
 Look at this tutorial for more in-depth instructions.
I found this black chain at Walmart for 4.00---and had the rest of the supplies around the house.
I loved the way it turned out!
 My sister's birthday was also coming up, and I knew that she would love one. Pearls is more her thing so I came up with this one.
I used brown and white checked fabric and a strand of old pearls that I had....and it turned out so cute that I hard time giving it up!
She loved it!
Happy Birthday, Sis!
Can't wait to make more fabric roses to add to my cardigans and belts. Hope these stay instyle long enough for me to make them and wear them!ha
Chelsea Corsage Cardigan
love this cardigan from ny&company.

Off to journal on our family blog and to write out my Goals for 2010. Hope you all have a great year in 2011!

Linking up with some of these great parties!