Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fab Finds for $15 (or under!)

Every week I try to budget out how much we will spend on groceries, 
Ship out some un-earthly amount for bills, 
Set some moola aside for gas,
Stash some cash for hay and grain for our "farm yard" family, 
and so on.

Outside of being the family accountant
I also am the Queen of Cheap, to an extent.
My Sunday mornings are filled with coupons, 
newspapers, and every weekly sales flyer 
I can get my hands on.

I try my hardest to make my job as a part time SAHM
pay off for our family with my frugality.
Even if it means that I go without new jeans, 
that necklace I've been eyeing, 
or even something as little as my favorite mascara.

Then, there are days like today.
I woke up KNOWING I would 
be buying something for myself.
The little devil on my shoulder made it
perfectly clear to the angel that this was HIS day.
After my conscience conceded, 
and the angel was no where to be seen we hit the stores.

I had a little bit of cash leftover from grocery shopping this week, 
thanks to some amazing coupon savings.
$45 to be exact.
So, instead of just purchasing something on a whim
I decided to challenge myself.
$45 total. 3 Stores. $15 cash per store.
And I could only shop sales or clearance racks.

At first I thought this was impossible
and I'd never be able to do it.
But, I'm not one to turn down a challenge.

So I scoured my coupon binder to see what I could find.
The remainder of a gift card for Marshall's ($5)
A 40% off coupon for Michael's
And another 15% off entire purchase for Michael's
And with my Perks card I knew I'd find something cheap at Office Max.

Better than nothing!

So what Fab Finds did I come up with????

Two 11x14 frames, which were on sale for 50% off

Tacky Glue, Spray Paint, Hemp Twine, Star Punch, Card Stock
All were on sale for 20-50% off.
Except the paint, I used the 40% off coupon on that.

These cute, navy leather flats, on clearance with an additional 20% off

A new fall diaper bag, on clearance and marked down 60%

Not pictured are 5 Sharpie Markers from Office Max.

Not Bad! If I do say so myself :)
The best part? I came home with $1 to spare.

The devil on my shoulder didn't QUITE break the bank this time...
But my craving to shop has been quenched.
For now anyways!

When you give yourself a certain amount to shop with do you tend to stick to it?
Or, do you give into temptation and go above and beyond?

Monday, August 29, 2011

Miss Mommy's Tuesday 10

It's Tuesday!

That means:
1. You made it through Monday, and
2. It's Miss Mommy's first Tuesday 10!

Miss Mommy

So what are my 10 favorite things for this week?

Take a peek...

10. Snickers! I've been on a kick since I made these the other night.

9. Sheep that make funny faces!

8. Babies dancing on their Pepere's feet.
{it's like looking back 28 years to when I used to do this with my dad, melts my heart!}

7. Awww...the cuteness!

6. Being "that" family at a restaurant {her Pepere brings it out in her!}

5. Because #6 wasn't enough restaurant goofiness...
Her Dada used to make food sculptures at the dining hall in college, she got his genes!

4. First Place ribbons, especially when the winning photo is of your daughter :)

3. Maddy's "Cheese" face - you just have to laugh!

2. Puddle jumping! No matter how small the puddle.

And the number 1 thing that has made me smile this week?

The moments of sheer bliss that I get to spend with my Punkin!

What are your top 10 favorite things this week?

The Terrific Two's?

Ok, I know, most of you are saying
"The Terrific Two's? Is she NUTS??"

That's still up for discussion, the 'am I nuts' part.

As for the Terrific Two's -
That, my friends, really exists.

In the 28 months that the Punkin has been on this earth
these past few have certainly been my favorite.

The random snuggles,
"I Wuv You Momma",
Conquering little obstacles,
becoming a little person,
learning, and teaching me something, EVERY. DAY.

Not a day has gone by in the past 4 months
that I haven't felt totally fulfilled.

Don't get me wrong.
I THOROUGHLY miss the days when she had
chubby cheeks,
chunky thighs,
a triple chin,
baby pattern baldness,
chubba wubba piggy toes,
and rolls on her wrists.
Makes me want to cry knowing they are gone.

BUT, my little Punkin is growing into a mature, fun little toddler.
I have a blast with her each and every day.
Not a day goes by that she doesn't make me laugh,
until I practically pee my pants.

It has been an honor to be able to watch each milestone in her life.

To watch her emotions develop and mold her into a
loving, thoughtful and kind hearted little girl.
To see her work a crowd into roaring laughter
like the little comedienne she KNOWS she is.

The temper tantrums, time outs,
and "NO!!"'s are still there.
But, underneath it all she's my perfect little angel.
And for every ugly 2 year old moment she gives me,
I am SURE to get 100 'melt your heart' moments back.

I wish I could keep this age forever.
Never let it go.

I find myself wanting to record every cute little thing she says.
Take a zillion pictures of that one little curl
on the back of her head that is SO perfect.
And try to preserve every second of every day in some way.

20 years from now I don't want to have forgotten any of it.
I want to be able to share every last little detail with her,
so she knows how much she touched my heart throughout her life.
She is the silver lining that shines through all my dark avenues.

I love her and all of her two-year-oldness to pieces.

So when everyone else says "Don't worry, this too shall pass",
Let it be known that I don't want it to.

Let her be two, and let her be two forever.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Snickers, Chocolate Chips and Peanut Butter - OH MY!

Mini Snickers.
What can I say?
We're buds.
We go way back...
Back to a time when I wore pig tails like the Punkin.
Back when I used to LOVE them frozen.
Thats right. Frozen. SO GOOD.

But, today I had a different idea in mind.
Ooey. Gooey. Goodness. 

Cooking them up in a peanut butter cookie is insanely good.
But, I only had chocolate chip cookie dough in the fridge.
And there was NO WAY I was heading back to the crazed grocery store.
{We are getting Hurricane Irene tonight, remember?}
So, I figured I'd use the chocolate chip and improvise 
by adding peanut butter frosting on the top.

Melt in your mouth DELICIOUSNESS.

Here's how I did it:

You'll need:

1 package of refrigerated chocolate chip cookie dough
1 bag of Mini Snickers
1/2 cup of cream cheese frosting
1/2 cup of peanut butter
chocolate chips
paper muffin cups, I used mini and regular cups

Here's what you do:

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
Unwrap 25 Mini Snickers bars
Eat one :) You know you want to!

Use 1 heaping tablespoon of cookie dough, 
press it out and wrap it around the Snickers.

Roll it into a ball and place inside a muffin cup.

Continue with the rest.

Place on a cookie sheet and bake for about 15 minutes.
Let cool completely.
The middles of each cookie will sink slightly.

Mix together peanut butter and cream cheese frosting.

Top each cookie with about 1 tablespoon of frosting
Top that with a chocolate chip.

Bet you can't eat just one! :)

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Just Pin It!

Ohhhh Pinterest.

Really, I do love you, but you're taking up all my free time...

WHAT? You aren't pinning yet??
Honestly, this is the next best thing to sliced bread.

Here are a few of the must-haves I was peeking at this morning....
If you want to see more, look me up on Pinterest.

I don't care where these go, I just HAVE TO HAVE them!

Source: etsy.com via Katie on Pinterest

I wish I had all the ingredients to make this for dinner tonight...

Yes, it's true, I have a Mason Jar fetish.
But, in my defense, it IS totally cool storage for my craft room!

Ahhh! I want to ride my bike through this RIGHT NOW!

Source: sfgate.com via Katie on Pinterest

How perfect for the beginning of Fall?
I'm such a sucker for a good Caramel Apple.

Do I have you hooked yet?
Want an invite?
Shoot me your email and I'll gladly send you one!
Ok, thats enough....back to pinning I go!

Happy Wednesday Everyone :)

Monday, August 22, 2011

Well, Howdy Do!

Just shouting out a little THANK YOU 
to all my followers {old and new}.

Never in a million years did I think I would hit the 40+ mark on this little blog.
I'm speechless {OK, not really. That's a hard thing for me to be.}.
Seriously though,
You guys ROCK. MY. WORLD!

Thanks so much for listening to my pointless little rants,
amusing me with your comments,
and possibly trying one of my recipes/projects.

I figured this would be a great time to share a little about me...
Especially since most of you are new to the blog.

So, my name is Katie. 
But, we already know that.

I also frequently go by:
 Mama, Red, Honey, Kate, Skidz {not what you think, I swear!}, the list goes on...

I'm a part-time SAHM to a wonderful 28 month old little redhead.

My husband thinks I'm something super extra special {awww thanks honey!},

But in reality, I'm not.
I'm just your average, everyday Joe {errr...Mom}....

Dust buster
Errand runner
Pooper scooper
Crafter wanna be
Cheerio hunter
Personal Shopper
Bill payer
Mess maker {even Momma's make messes too you know!}
Hugging post
Boo Boo Kisser
Deal detective
Optimist {75% of the time}
Horseback riding instructor
Motivational speaker {just ask the hubs!}
Backyard farmer
Chicken wrangler
Exclamation point junky!!!!
Lover of food
Hater of crumbs
Do it yourselfer
Comment lover {seriously, I jump for joy over them!}

Man...you never realize how many hats you wear 'til you write it all down...
so I'll spare you the rest of the things I do in my free time ;)


Long story short...

I hope you enjoy your stay in my crazy little world!

**stay tuned for a back to school giveaway taking place at the end of the week!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Evolution of Our Kitchen: The 4 Year Plan Because Life Happens!

When we moved into our house in 2007
we knew we were in for some BIG TIME DIY projects.
It was going to be a labor of love.
I loved the overall charm of the property.
It was a quaint, cute fixer-upper, 
and had major potential, with a little TLC.
Famous last words...little TLC.

Winter 2007, days after we moved in
The House was built in the 1940's
and had NEVER changed hands until we purchased it.
So when I say it was outdated I mean it in the most drastic of ways. 
One of these days I will pull out the old photos of the day we signed papers.
BEFORE we did any work.
No, I take that back. 
Mint green walls in EVERY room. 
Old, tired turquoise carpets covering what once was beautiful hardwood.
Ply-wood cabinet doors stained that 70's orange color.
Oh, and the best part - Pepto Bismol pink bathrooms - from floor to ceiling.

Bad picture, its from the original sale listing.
But I bet you get the pink idea.
And even better than Pepto pink? 
The bathrooms were painted in exterior oil based paint.
Do you have ANY idea how hard it was to attempt to cover that??? 
The happy dance WILL be done the day the sheet rock in those rooms is ripped out.

The outdated decor was the scariest for me.
To the hubs...
It was the well in the basement.
Yup, a legit well, with water in it. 
30+ feet deep.
Without a cover.
Just a little freaky.
He SWORE the little girl from The Ring
was going to crawl out at him.
{I'm pretty sure he still has nightmares, but don't tell him I told you that!}

Needless to say we didn't move right in.
It took 2 weeks of cleaning, ripping out carpets, 
tearing out toilets and sinks, 
and priming every room before we felt comfortable sleeping there.
It was bland, but clean and live-able.

Then it was on to our first MAJOR task - The Kitchen...

Wish I had kept that light, I kinda miss it - NOT!

I couldn't stand the dark knotty pine paneling. 
It was old, sticky and just plain old gloomy.
It was the first to go, or to get disguised.

The old back splash being ripped out after we painted.

In the process of "disguising" the old wood.
After sanding and priming (3 coats!) I decided on a 
cheery yellow/beige to tide me over until the walls were knocked out.

We SWORE we'd start ripping it all out that coming winter.

Then I got pregnant.

Dada-to-be just slightly excited!
My 6 month preggo belly.
That halted all work on the kitchen for the next 1.5 years.
We turned our attention to remodeling Punkin's room which is a whole other post!
But, here is a sneak peak from right before we finished....

The Punkin's room almost done.
Sweetest picture ever, right? xoxo
I think she was afraid to come home and see the kitchen :)
After our brief vacation to have a baby
and thoroughly enjoy her for 6 months
we got back to the kitchen.

Ready for demo
Then came the real demo.
Walls, insulation, all of it - G O N E.

Out with the old and in with the new.

And then there was dust.
I have never seen so much plaster dust.
Skim coating is for the birds.
And we still have 5 more rooms to eventually do.
At least it looks good when its done!

Well, little by little over the past 7 months
the kitchen has started coming together.
New windows, new sink,
new counter (made from scratch!)
new recessed and pendant lighting,
new back splash, new breakfast nook.
After 4 years of dealing with nothing but the basics
and lots and lots of blood, sweat, tears and frustration,
I am FINALLY seeing the start of something beautiful.

Don't mind the lack of cabinet doors and trim we aren't quite finished yet.
In the end we are going to be able to say:
All on our own.
True weekend warrior style.
And I'm going to love it.

Will I ever remodel another kitchen DIY style?
Sure, just not any time in the near future.
And it WILL be completed in under 2 months.
4 years is torture.
This was exhausting!

Now, lets get cracking on those hardwood floors!
Anyone wanna help???
I can't wait to show you all the pictures when everything is finished.
Hopefully it won't take another 4 years :)

What is the longest it has ever taken you to complete a major project?

Care to Share?