Friday, December 28, 2012

How was everyone's Christmas?

Ours was fantastic! It was our year to have the older kids for Christmas and the decision was made months ago that we would share a special holiday with them! I grew up snowmobiling through Yellowstone park. Had I known that one day this privilege would be nearly non existent for my own children I perhaps would not have taken it for granted! I have been able to share the family passion with my husband who now bleeds ski doo. My great grandfather Wiese was one of the first people to enter the park by means of snow machine. A young man with a heart for flying across the snow....

While leaving town for the Christmas holiday is not for everyone it is certainly something our family will always remember! I always look forward to these trips but this year especially so... The day of our departure started out with unease! We received a text from our school district notifying us of the closure of our local high school due to a threat of violence. With Connecticut so fresh and devastating my mother bear instincts came out and my heart raced as I contacted my daughters elementary school which is only a block away from the high school. The superintendent would not allow the closure of the other schools in the district. I am positive this was because he did not want to spread unnecessary panic....

At the end of the day everyone was safe and we were on our way out of town, away from the chaos that has become "normal" everyday life. For five blissful days I did not worry about gun toting madmen. My children were safe under our presence and protection...

As we prepared to leave the one place on earth I feel most peaceful, I could not help but cry. Here we go back to reality! Back to uncertainty, back to life. I am so lucky and truly blessed . A few years from now they will not remember what they opened on Christmas morning, but they will remember the things we do together as a family. The new reality of what we must face is overwhelming and saddening.

And so we're back!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Ahhh! Messy Kiddos!

    Sticky situations are scenarios any mom is familiar with! Whether the beloved first birthday cake walk or the blue holiday candy cane all over your toddlers face being a mamma certainly requires a sense of humor  Knowing how to pick your battles is important! Laughing when you would really rather pull your hair out by the roots! Our little ones will only be little for so long! Embrace those tiny sticky icky moments! Wet Ones is giving us the opportunity to share all of the Sticky Situations we have found ourselves in and tips on how to deal with them through their Facebook Contest! Log on to share your story and tips! You can also be entered to win an iPad Mini or Six Flags Tickets! I just entered!

     Keeping certain mess makers out of reach will certainly help! A few simple steps around our house help us to curb most messes! A plain machine washable rug under baby's seat at the table helps keep our carpet protected from mac and cheese spills while Wet Ones handle the face and hands! I have also learned from a house full of girls to keep my makeup out of reach! Little mini mamma's like to paint themselves and surrounding areas with mascara! Have a great story or a few tips? and don't forget about the fabulous prizes! Good luck!

I participated in a campaign on behalf of for Wet Ones. I received a promotional item to thank me for participating.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Peppermint log candles...

     I have had these logs kicking around for awhile now. The intent was to turn them into pumpkins. The pumpkin logs I have already made have been holding up real good. Sooo these logs have sat in the backyard making my husband irritable for some time:)
     I cleaned them up. Brought them in and painted them white. I was relieved when the spray paint did not stick to the oil treated logs because it was chilly outside! I painted them with a latex semi gloss instead whilst keeping warm!
     While the paint dried I gathered some random items still not positive what I was doing. I used some old bulbs we had laying around, some jute, and a few bamboo sticks to fashion my wick and flame.

     When the paint was almost there...I am low on patience:) I used red ribbon and a matching red acrylic paint for my peppermint striping effect.

I really like them! They turned out just like I imagined! Good luck!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Dear Santa, about last Saturday.....

Please place Sweet baby K back on the good list!

     When my husband and I learned I was pregnant over two years ago we rode the roller coaster! The usual fear of the change and the  elation of a child of our own.... We have two older children and we would be literally starting over with diapers and all nighters! Fast forward to life with Sweet Baby K! Starting over has its most heart fulfilling moments! We get to experience her milestones together! We are having an absolute riot!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Throwback Thursday

Yesterday was my Poppa's birthday! This is one of many cherished photos I have of him as a youngster! A good ol Idaho boy with his Chevy! Happy birthday grandpa! Much love!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Coke can snowflakes...

   I love to find ideas that suite any budget and ability!  

    Cut your can in half...don't throw the top away just yet! Carefully cut and bend the can into strips. Fold the strips in half to begin your snowflake design! Have fun! I used a white spray paint and iridescent glitter to finish...


Hang anywhere using fishing line! Love that stuff!
I am working on something fun with this old window.
    Save the tops of your cans to make a lighted snowflake garland! Carefully snip the pop top off and place light through opening. Use the remaining portion of the tab to secure:)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

DIY Money Tree! For those hard to shop for!

We all have a few of them on our lists!

   You know! Those hard to shop for friends and family! For me it is a handful of teen and pre teens! My daughter and I shopped aimlessly with little luck! I finally surmised that we could just get them a gift card or money.... Money is the ultimate gift after all. Your recipient is free to do as he or she pleases, but it has always felt a little cold to me! I give you the Christmas money tree!

Start with two pieces of felt. Trace a tree pattern, cut and either sew or glue them together with hot glue. Leave about a half inch border and a hole for stuffing the tree at the bottom! Next stuff your tree! Do not be afraid to get into the corners, you will need to to create the best look!

I used a small dowel cut into equal pieces for the trunk! To create the candy cane striping, paint first your base color. Then when dry apply painters tape in a spiral around the dowel and paint your secondary color! Once you remove the tape touch up and even out where necessary! These blocks that I used for the base were only .30 at Hobby Lobby! I painted a primary color then topped it with ivory and sanded the edges for that unique look! Once your base is completed use a cute piece of scrapbook paper to cover the top!

So Cute, Easy and Affordable!

Assemble by closing the opening to the tree around the dowel! Use a small amount of hot glue to attach the trunk to the base! You are now ready to decorate!

Use ornaments that reflect the personality of the intended recipient!

 I found tiny clothespins at Wal Mart. Use them to attach money or gift cards! Have fun! 

          What are you working on?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Soft pretzels!

Fall is full of great ideas! Chilly weather makes me crave the warm smells wafting from the oven! I had never made soft pretzels before and decided it was time! This is an Allrecipes version with a few tweaks! Enjoy!

Pretzel dough:

2- 1/4oz packages yeast
1 1/4 cup warm water
2 tablespoons brown sugar
5 cups bread flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon apple sauce (as an oil substitute)

Baking soda bath:
1/2 cup baking soda
4 cups hot water

Egg wash:
1/2 cup salted sweet cream butter softened
1 egg

Pretzel toppings of your choice

Dissolve yeast in warm water with one tbs sugar and let sit until foamy or at least ten minutes. Meanwhile mix flour salt and remaining sugar together in separate bowl. Once yeast is foamy create a well in the flour mixture and add applesauce and yeast. Mix well and then knead dough until elastic. Dough will be dry, add a tbs of water at a time until it is workable. Kneading takes about 10 minutes. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl and let rise for one hour or until doubled in size.

Once dough has risen preheat oven to 450 and pour dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Divide dough into 12 equal parts and roll out into rope shapes. Prepare your baking soda bath. Form a pretzel shape with your dough rope, make sure to cross the ends in the middle portion of your pretzel, this will help it keep its shape during baking. Dip shaped pretzels into baking soda wash for at least 10 seconds prior to placing on a greased cookie sheet.

After all pretzels have been dipped beat egg and mix in butter. Brush the tops of your pretzel with the egg wash and then whatever your preference for topping.... Course salt, cinnamon, Parmesan e.t.c

Bake until golden brown, this usually takes less than eight minutes! You now have delicious homemade soft pretzels!

Monday, November 19, 2012

    I cannot believe this is my last post as a Kotex ambassador! What a ride this has been! Six months ago when I accepted this opportunity it was with a light heart. I had briefly discussed "the talk" with my daughter but had never stopped to think of the many issues a young girl may face as she begins to become a young lady! Having long forgot the challenges.

    This campaign opened my eyes and helped me to discover ways to connect with my child. I recently discovered that I do not spend as much one on one time with my nine year old as I should. She needs me to stop and make her the focus instead of trying to harness the unimportant situations I have no control over. I do have control over how I chose to spend time with my little girl who is growing up way to fast! I never imagined becoming an ambassador for this program would open doors that I had long puzzled over! My daughter is more open and willing to give feedback  and I feel that if and when necessary she will be comfortable approaching me with any questions she may have!

    I was able to emotionally connect with this campaign, because the issues we were given to discuss over the last few months are real, and could happen at any time! I feel more confident and found myself wanting to reach out to other moms who will also be in my shoes soon! What a special time for a mom and daughter! 

    We recently spent the afternoon on the town courtesy of Mom Central! We hit our favorite local bakery Apple Spice and enjoyed each others company in a way we had not had the opportunity to in months! What an amazingly smart and talented young girl I have! Stopping to giggle and share secrets! That afternoon we reestablished confidence in one another. Before my eyes this once toothless little baby doll has become and is becoming someone very special!

   I was given the chance through this campaign to develop the tools I will need to help her learn. Given courage to embrace change. Taught tolerance for those not so shiny moments, and of course reminded how quickly we need to be prepared to let them grow! For helpful tips and tools for your family please visit  educate yourself on the facts. Prepare your daughter for upcoming changes! Also be sure to visit the Kotex site for useful tools such as calenders and a full line of great products! Again this has been an immense opportunity! One I will never forget!

Good Luck!

I wrote this review while participating in a Brand Ambassador Campaign by on behalf of U by Kotex Tween and received products to facilitate my post and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Movie nights! Confessions of a book nerd!

The Saga ends!

    Last night was a late night for this lil group! The night all Twilight fans have been waiting for finally had arrived! Breaking Dawn was awesome! Of course there were a few cheesy parts, Aro gives an all new meaning to creeper and the baby Renesmee was strange to say the least! Overall, however it was probably, in my opinion... the best out of the series! It was a little sad to see it end, but eager to purchase the box set for the girls!

    It had been a looong time since I had been to a theater! I think Hunger Games was the last theater movie....Three very active full time kids, a job or three, a gorgeous husband, and life in general will do that for you! I found myself in eager anticipation of a handful of upcoming films! Les Miserables looks divine and I cannot wait to see it on Christmas day snug in the home of my heart! The cast looks amazing! This classic beloved tale has me antsy! Anne Hathaway, Russell Crowe, and Hugh Jackman.... phenomenal! I have the Liam Neeson and Claire Daines version of Les Mise on my Kindle Fire and watch it religiously!

    The teen saga era remains ever popular, even for us old ladies! Halfway through  Dream Dark, the Beautiful Creatures series has me hooked! Following Link and Ethan as they return home and Link begins to understand the gravity of his situation! I cant read fast enough!
     Oz great and powerful! Looks fantastic as well, and I have already found my next series for in between gym meets and homework! The Mortal Instruments series! Has anyone read this series? The angle that caught my eye? The Nephilim! I loved Danielle Trussoni's Angelology from cover to end! Peaking my interest in the subject! Another reason for loving the SoulKeeper series, which by the way would be a fantastic movie! I need to take a deep breath and finish my current reading list! It is just a great time to be in love with books! So many great and wonderful reads just waiting!

    Anyway! Yes, I am book nerd! I am currently single handedly supporting Amazon through my book purchases:) What films are you anticipating! Stephanie Meyers The Host is set to be released soon Official source here!

 What books have you hooked?