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Monday, March 31, 2014

Bored with the Moving Whining

So I am moving in the summer.  For those of you who have been reading, you know I move a lot.  And that I HATE it.  But this one, is the final move, finally.

It is scary, as I don't know if I will even like it, and I am choosing to settle and grow roots there.  I am moving closer to my family, but I haven't lived there in 20 years.

For this reason, I am feeling a resistance to craft, resistance to do projects, etc.  I am showing the house for the owners, so there is the mess of doing these things, but it is beyond that, and since I have moved a lot, I know what it is.  I need to nest in my nest, and I am preparing to change nests.

Do you feel like this during transition?  Any things that help you when you are in between things?  Any things that have helped you during a move?  How do you keep your crafty and creative spirit going?  I'd love to hear:)

And with that, I am going to go down and trash the dining room with this craft.

More Kid Boxes

This weekend, we went to the LONGEST work luncheon ever...  Thankfully, I had my kid box ready to go. It was so helpful, that as soon as I got home, I refilled it.  When there are "surprises" (as Soleil calls them), it is so much more exciting to my kiddos, even though most of this crap was lying around the house anyway!

Here is this round.  If you have any other ideas, please share!!

Completely random, I am inspired by this table. I was going through my photos and I saved this at some point.  I'm totally violating copyright issues, because I don't even remember where it is from to give credit!! (I totally would, if I did, by the way.)  Anyway, I love the beautiful presentation, the use of more than 2 colors, the balance.  
Soleil is asking for a "pink tea party" for her Bday.... we'll see what happens, since we are moving around the same time.  Who am I kidding, though... I love putting together parties!!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Random Spring Craftiness & Inspiration

Working on a few new face paint designs.  Thanks, internet, for ideas!

Inspired but his chalk work at CHOW, a local eatery.
Outfit Inspiration from a magazine.  I cannot wait for shorts, because if you can believe it, in southern VA, we are STILL wearing winter coats.
 I own this dress, and love that I can jazz it up a bit!
 And my latest chalk work from a bridal shower.  I love playing with chalk!!

Friday, March 21, 2014

Toddler Crafting

I am sooo lucky!  I have kids who LOVE to craft.  (What would I do if they didn't?? LOL)  Soleil asks regularly if I have a craft for her.  Sometimes, Mama is a little tired, so I have started to plan crafts ahead for her.  They are lifesavers when I need a moment to do something, and of course, I don't want her watching TV.  

This craft was easy... I drew a rainbow on dark paper with white crayon, gave her tissue and a little bowl of glue.  She knew exactly what to do with it!! She has made several creations using the scrunch-up-the-tissuepaper-and-glue method.  

The way I plan ahead is to store each craft in one of these cool stackable containers.  Snapware brand is great, but this one is a joann's version.
The top has pony beads and pipe cleaners, the second has play mais, and the last one is decorative scissors and all different types of paper and a small container of playdoh.  (I make long snakes for her to cut into little pieces).
 If you have to go somewhere and wait a long time (like the auto tune up place!), this is great to bring with you.
One of Soleil's finished creations.  

Thursday, March 20, 2014


My friend, Roxanne, has me hooked.
I walked into her house, and she had a whole shelf of (healthy) snacks that she told me she bought for under $1. I always thought couponing was for those folks that buy a lot of processed, prepackaged food.  Roxanne has all healthy stuff, and I wanted to be know how she saved $$.   It was then, that I rethought the whole coupon thing.

The whole process has made me look at shopping in a different way.  I read the ads (there are websites that list them out for you, and even allow you to print out a list!) and planned ahead.  It makes you eat more seasonally, which is better for everyone.

To sum up, this is what I do:
1.  Collect coupons.  Organize them.  (Only keep ones that you will use!)
2.  Check ads online and print list.
3.  Match up with coupon.
4.  Shop on Wednesdays when coupons double at Farm Fresh.
5.  Keep lists and coupons in car in case I have a free moment while I am out to hit the other stores.

I will only go to a different store that week if I they really have a good deal.  I have tried a different store each week (Kroger, Commissary, Harris Teeter, and Farm Fresh) and then picked my favorite (Farm Fresh).

I have saved a ton of $$, folks!! I'd love to hear tips if you have them:)

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

I love my Library

Better than any reality show... 

And before you think I read just hoity toity stuff, this is what I read right beforehand.  (And I am waiting for the sequel at the library.

On Certain Fridays, the library has LEGO CLUB.  It is like Happy Hour for kids.  Afterschool, they dump out this giant container of legos in their meeting room, and the kids play until 5pm.  The parents can actually visit a bit as well, as our library isn't exactly one of those silent types.  I love quiet, but when everyone else is in that "Friday Festive Mood", I don't mind the chatter.

I also was able to teach a little face painting class to the children's librarian and several other volunteers.  It was so fun!! I practiced the night before to think of how to teach best.  Paul came up to find me with full face paint at 10pm. 
And this is my library friend, D'jon painted as a leopard.  The best part is that she happened to wear a leopard colored yellow scarf that day, and wore her paint home, while riding her bike!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

My Command Center

My Command Center.  I did not create this term--my little brother, Andy, gets credit for the title.  My mom has a place in her house that is where she sits with her coffee and her computer, a blanket, a dog or 2, and settles in.  He calls it her Command Center. I have one of those places as well, and the red couch is it.

I start my day here, and usually end it here, too.  I plan things, plan to create things, drink coffee, facebook, email, and sometimes even just sit and listen to music.

My favorite "Command Center" activity: drinking coffee. 

I leave my pile of magazines in this spot, and use it to rip out inspiration.  I write down or "pin" new recipes here, and review my week's itinerary.  It is one of my favorite spots in the house.
Where is your "Command Center"??
A recent magazine article that inspired me.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Williamsburg Mini Trip

Williamsburg, VA in only about 40 miles away from our house.  I, however, have never been, and needed a little getaway with the kids to just relax and get away from the routine of life.

We packed a few changes of clothes, filled a big rubbermaid container with games, legos, characters for Soleil, cards, and art supplies.  I also packed a bag with snacks and drinks, and sought out a deal on priceline.  My kids LOVE hotels, and it really didn't matter where we stayed, but we ended up lucking out big time...

We booked the Historic Powhatan Resort for about $80 total per night.  We headed northward, and since it was raining hard, and it was Friday, it took us about an hour and half to get through the tunnel to Williamsburg.  The kids were amazing, and didn't care... they had a huge snack bag, and I gave in, and threw in a movie in the car's DVD player.

We finally arrived to the hotel and pulled in to this beautiful resort.  The units are like little town houses, 4 in a row.  We had an upper level, which consisted of a living room, bedroom with king size bed and bathroom, an additional bathroom and a small, well thought out kitchen.  It also had another set of stairs within the unit (steep, but carpeted) that led up to another small room that had 2 twin beds in it!!  We were just expecting a standard hotel room, and got so much more!

And then we drove around the resort.  There was an indoor pool, with 2 hot tubs, recreation room with scheduled activities, a nice restaurant, tennis courts (you could check out equipment on site), good playground, and mini golf!! We hit the jackpot.

I didn't turn on the computer all weekend.  We played games, the kids played nicely, we had no other responsibilities and it was DELIGHTFUL.  Phase 10 is a great game, and Soleil will play forever with little characters.

 We did go into Colonial Williamsburg, which to be honest, is not interesting to little kids.  They did love the gardens behind the historical buildings, and we played there in the beautiful VA sun.  We tried "Queen's Cake" from the bakeshop--it was horrible.  We joked and said that it must have been baked in the 1700s.