Saturday, January 24, 2015

Dare to Share #147

We made it through another week, and you know what that means.. 
it is time to Dare to Share!   

This week was another crazy one, but thankfully not as bumpy as the last two weeks.  Not only was it the last week of the semester, and midterm week, we also celebrated a special birthday of this girl! We had a great family dinner at her favorite sushi restaurant.  In addition to all that, I was in the process all week of buying a new to me car.  If you don't have to make a big stressful purchase during the busiest school week of the year, I would not recommend it. Unfortunately for me it had to be done, as the lease to my old one is over at the ed of the month.    Starting next week our school schedule changes, and I will finally have time to make projects and blog again.  I will also be able to finally take down the Christmas trees. I am never this late, but I just did not have the time with everyone going on the last few weeks.  

The features this week, were in honor of my daughter's birthday! 

My daughter love Cherry Coke, so I knew she would approve of these Cherry Coke Cupcakes by Simply Stacie

I also featured The Best Party Punch by My Newest Addiction.  It would be the perfect drink to serve at so many types of parties. 

Over my at co-host Kim's blog Kandy Kreations she has many more Frozen Party Ideas like this post with Frozen Party Food. (you might even recognize one in particular.:)) 

Now it it time for this week's party.  You can link up anything that you would like to share.  If you are chosen as a Dare to Share Feature of the Day,  your post will be featured on the blog, and my social media. Kim also shares links to features, so you may end up on her social media as well.  

Link up and HAVE FUN! 



Read More »

Friday, January 23, 2015

The Best Party Punch -Feature of the Day

Do you ever wonder what to serve to drink at your party? Laura from My Newest Addiction share a party punch recipe that she served at a baby shower. What I love about this punch is the added touch of the extra fruit that can be added by the guest to their drink if they desire. This punch looks elegant enough that I  could see serving this punch at brunches, baptisms and even a wedding. Be sure to stop over at My Newest Addiction for the reicpe.  Than k you so much Laura for linking up this awesome punch recipe to  Dare to Share! 
Read More »

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Cherry Coke Cupcakes - Feature of the Day

Sweet Treats, Cherry Cupcakes, Cherry Coke Cupcake Treats

We are celebrating my daughter's 18th birthday this week. (How did 18 years go by already?!) I wanted to feature a treat on her birthday that I know she would love.  When I saw these Cherry Coke Cupcakes by Simply Stacie, I knew I had found it.  Cherry Coke just happens to be her favorite drink, and chocolate cupcakes her favorite treat..  A mix between the two, and she would be in sweets heaven.   These look so good, and I wish I had a dozen already made to give to her on her big day.   Be sure to go over to Simply Stacie to find out how to make them!   Thank you so much Stacie for linking up your yummy recipe to Dare to Share!
Read More »

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Dare to Share #146

It's Friday night, which means it is time  for another Dare to Share Party! 

It's been another bumpy week! 

Our cats love to hang out with our mice.  They do not hurt them, they just sit and watch them play.  Well on Monday morning, I noticed our cat Milo (not pictured)  looking strangely into Oreo's cage. (the smiling mouse on the right)   Oreo and Milo are good buddies, and I could tell something was wrong. When I looked in the cage, I saw Oreo laying still on the bottom.  I could tell right away he was gone.  I dreaded what I knew that I would have to do a few hours later.  I would have to tell Kara that Oreo had passed,  after the hard week she had last week.   She did not take it well, and kind of avoided looking at him and dealing with it  for a long while (2 1/2 days!)   On Tuesday she said she was sick again, I allowed her to stay home. By the afternoon though, she was feeling okay again.  I sent her back to school on Wednesday. She called from the office second hour (P.E time) , saying she did not feel good.  I told her that I was not picking her up.  She called again an hour later claiming she really was sick.  I knew she was having anxiety, because of what happened last week at school and losing Oreo. I did end up picking her up, because I could tell she would call me all day.  I talked to the school counselor and one of her teachers about what is going on. She went to school the entire day  yesterday, but called home several times again today asking to go home.  I did not go pick her up. but I found out later though that she spent the time in the office instead of class.  We have a three day weekend this weekend, so I am hoping it will give her a long enough break to regroup. 

Last night, we noticed that our hedgehog was having some issues walking.  He has been a little bit out of sorts the last few days, not really eating and drinking much.  I did some research online and saw he had some symptoms of a possible ear infection.  Around 11 p.m. I called the vet that stays open 24 hours to ask if they see hedgehogs, so I could make an appointment.  We had taken two of our hamsters there in the past, so we knew they saw small animals.  I did not know if it was an emergency where he would need to be seen right way, but I found out there were two of the vets in the office that  did see hedgehogs, and they were available right then.  Since Kara was wide awake anyway, and I knew she would worry all day if we waited until Saturday (the next day the Drs would be in the office) we bundled him up and went to vet at 11:30 pm. The good news is he will be okay.  He does not have an ear infection but actually a sore paw.  One of fingers seems out of place. We figured out that he was probably in pain, and the reason why he was having problems walking was his little foot hurt.  We were given some pain meds,and the instructions to check in with the vet this weekend.  If he is still having issues,  they may try to take tiny little x-rays to see if anything is broken.  

There have been a few positive things that have happened this week.  My oldest daughter went to school every single day this week, and made a lot of progress on her work.  She was accepted into a work skills program that she is excited about, and now wants to finish school. YEA!!   The weather was MUCH better this week than last.  While there were a couple of mornings in the single digits, we got up close to 30 degrees a few days which felt like a heat wave!!   Next week is the last week of the semester, and then we will have another 3 day weekend with NO homework.   

This week I multi-tasked.  Since I did have time to work on projects at home, I shared a fun Sock Snowman craft that I made with my women's group at church.  They are super easy to make, and can easily be customized.  

I promise I will be sharing a lot more features this upcoming week to make up for these last two weeks.   I thought these Sausage Stuffed Mushroom by  Summer Scraps would be great to serve for this week's play off games or for the upcoming Super Bowl.   

My co-host Kim from Kandy Kreations has a lot of fun snowman  themed ideas this week on her blog.  I love these Easy Olaf Wrapper Printables that would be perfect for a Frozen party.  If you are having one, you definitely need to check out her site.

Now it is time for this week's party.  You are welcome to link up anything that you would like to share.  If you are chosen a Dare to Share Feature of the Day your post will be featured on the blog and my social media.  Kim also shares features so you could be shared on her social media as well.  

 Link up and HAVE FUN!!  


Read More »

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Sock Snowmen

Sock Snowmen, Snowmen Crafts, frugal crafts

This week is turning out to be another bumpy one.  Since I have not had a lot of time to make projects, I hope you will understand why I am doing some multitasking for today's posts. Every Thursday morning I meet with some women from church for a social meeting. One week a month we meet for a devotional lesson, another week we meet for coffee. Some weeks we do a special project like decorate the church for a foster child Christmas party, or help someone with a special chore.   I really look forward to my time each week with some wonderful ladies.  This week we met at the church for a devotional and craft. While these snowmen  are not an original idea, they were so fun and easy to make, I thought they would make a good craft post.   I took these photos with my cell phone as I was making my snowmen at the meeting.   

If you want to make your snowman a decent size, you will want to use men's white tube sock.  You can recycle a sock you already have, or buy one at the dollar store.  Cut the sock to the left of the heel. Using a piece of string, tie the end of the side with the heel.  I actually could have tied my sock closer to the end, but realized it after I had knotted the string.  The ribbed part of the sock will become the snowmen, so tying it down as far as I did  will make a smaller snowman.  

Here is a better view of the tied sock.  Turn the sock half inside out before tying it.  When you turn it right side out again, the tied end will become the bottom of the snowman.  

Once the sock is right side out, fill it almost to the top with rice.  The rice gives the snowman some weight and substance.  You might also be able to find cheap bags of rice at the dollar store.   Do you notice how this sock had a logo on it?  Well that is not a problem, because it will be covered up later by his hat. 

Tie the top of the sock tightly with a piece of string. Once you have the top secured, tie another piece around the sock to form the neck and head.  

Roll up the remaining part of the sock to form a knit cap.  Once you have your basic snowman shape, you can get creative with how you decorate him.   We used decorative straight pins for the eyes and nose.  If you have small children who will want to be playing with the snowman, you might want to use something else for the face.  The scarf can be made from ribbon, fabric, fleece or felt.  Some of my friends added buttons on their snowman bellies, I chose to leave them off.  

How to make sock snowmen

When all of our snowmen took their group photo, we noticed that while we all made the same basic snowman, each one looked a little bit different. They all seemed to have their own personality.  How will you decorate your snowman?  

Read More »

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms - Feature of the Day

Stuffed Mushroom Recipe

Are you a fan of football?  I have to admit, that I have not been keeping track of the NFL playoffs since my team is out... BUT I was very happy this past Monday when my Ohio State Buckeyes won the National Championship. That was such an exciting game, especially since I was on the winning side. :)  In a few weeks, everyone will be gathering for Super Bowl parties, and these Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms by Summer Scraps would be a great finger food for the big game.  Be sure to stop over to Summer Scraps to get the this crowd pleasing recipe!  Thank you so much Summer for linking up this yummy appetizer to Dare to Share!
Read More »

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Dare to Share #145

It is once again Friday night, and you know what that means.. 
it is time to Dare to Share. 

Do you remember at last week's Dare to Share how I told you that this week we would get back to our normal routine.  Yea...  that did not happen.  This week ended up being a lot crazier than normal. It has been one of those week's when I am glad to see Friday, so I can have the weekend to recuperate.  Last Sunday afternoon/evening we got some snow, which made our streets quite messy.  I made the mistake of telling my kids I thought there was a chance we might not have school the next day. That did not end up happening.  Monday morning was rough.  We had to get up when it was dark for the first time in two weeks, on the coldest day of the season at the time. (it would get much worse a few days later)   The roads were very icy, and the back up to get to my youngest daughters school was so bad, that many of kids were late, including us.  My oldest was having a rough morning, and did not make it to school.  Our activities started back up, and for the first time in a long while, we had to figure out drop off and pick up logistics when two kids have to be in different places around the same time.  Tuesday was probably the only quiet day of the week.  Everyone went to school, but I did get a phone call from the school that my  oldest daughter did not go to one of her classes. On Wednesday things got very chaotic.  Around 10 a.m. my youngest daughter called from school.  She was in the office.  She had just had an asthma attack at school.  Last year she was diagnosed with allergy induced asthma which happens when she is around perfume, cologne, and hand sanitizer. She does have some preventative tactics that she is supposed to do when she starts having issues, but was not able to do them this time.    When she was in gym class, there was a strong scent of perfume,  and she  was having trouble breathing. She told the teacher, but he did not allow her to leave class. The problem continued, and she told him again. He asked her if she had asthma medication. She has an emergency inhaler in the office, but was confused when he said medication instead of inhaler. When she said she didn't think so, he said well you must not have any then, just stay in class.   Since she started his class 2nd quarter, I forgot to contact him about her allergies like I did all the other teachers at the beginning of the year.  As soon as she could, she went straight to the office.  They could tell immediately she needed her inhaler.  When I got to the school,  she was starting to feel a little better, but was coughing, and crying.  She ended up having an anxiety attack. She went home for the rest of the day to rest, and I immediately contacted her gym teacher.  He had no idea that she really did have asthma, and gave me and Kara a nice apology.  An hour later the high school called. This time it was school nurse.  She had Kyle in the office with a stomach ache.  She said that there was a lot of kids out with stomach issues, so she thought he should go home just in case.  I was already on the way to the high school to pick up my oldest so I picked him up the same time.  My oldest  had an appointment that she had to go to right away, so he had to go along, and wait during the appointment.   At the appointment I found out her anxiety was relapsing (which I was aware of).  She admitted to me  she had been skipping one of her classes the last couple of days, because she was feeling overwhelmed. She did not go to class 4 days in a row, so now she is really far behind.   She also said she has just talked to her counselor about possibly quitting school later in the month when she turns 18. Ummm..  NO!  We have worked very hard for the last 7 semesters to get her where she is.  She only has these last 2 weeks of this semester, and then the 2nd half of her Senior year. Luckily everyone had the same feeling about this as I did, and all are going to do everything they can to make sure she graduates.  I talked to all of her teachers, and the school counselor. We have all pretty much told her that we were there to help.  For the next two weeks I will be working closely with her to make sure she gets all of her homework done.  She will  have a lighter schedule next semester which should help her feel less overwhelmed.    That evening with the other two kids coming home early from school, we decided to stay home from our activities and rest.  After making it through Wednesday, we thought we would get the day off on Thursday.  The temperature where we live was close to -20, which is the cut off to cancel school.  400 schools in our area  called an extreme weather day.  Our school did not.   It was -11 when my son got on the bus, but it got even colder throughout the morning.  He thought I was punking him when I woke him up, and told him we had school. I really wish I was.  Today was finally a pretty normal day, but I still had one who stayed home not feeling well.  When I woke up Kara she had a really bad stomach ache.  After the week we had, I just let her stay home.  Hopefully next week, we will have a much easier week with better weather! 

How did your week go?  Hopefully a little less eventful than mine! 

Earlier in the week I wrote a post called New Year, New Resolutions. It is a good thing I realize for me change is a process, because I did not get much accomplished this week.   

My feature this week were for a craft, and a recipe.  I think this Recycled Soda Bottle Candle Sleeve by Redo It Yourself Inspirations is so pretty. 

The stress of this week is making me crave something sweet. A batch of Banana Bread Cookies by The Rebel Chick would hit the spot.  

My co host Kim from Kandy Kreations has some fun Olaf posts this week, like this printable Olaf Candy Bag Topper. Be sure to stop over and see this and many more of her awesome printables.  

Now it is time for this week's party.  You are welcome to link up anything that you would like to share.  If your chosen as a Dare to Share Feature of the Day, your post will be featured on the blog and my social media.  (if you were featured this week, I will still be sharing your posts on SM since I did not have the chance yet)  Kim has her own features, so you could be featured on her social media as well.  

Now link up and HAVE FUN!!  



Read More »

Friday, January 9, 2015

Banana Bread Cookies - Feature of the Day

cookie recipes, banana recipes

This week has been crazy!  It was one of those weeks, that all I want to do it plop down on the couch and eat something sweet and yummy for making it through.   These Banana Bread Cookies with chocolate chips by The Rebel Chick would definitely hit the spot.  I love the taste of banana and chocolate together.  Jenn entered this recipe in The Great Food Blogger Cookie Swap, so you know it has to be good.  Be sure to stop over to see how she made them. Thank you so much Jenn for linking up your yummy cookies to this week's Dare to Share.  
Read More »

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Recycled Soda Bottle Candle Sleeve - Feature of the Day

Recycled crafts, candle crafts,

A few days ago I noticed this pretty Recycled Soda Bottle Candle Sleeve by Redo It Yourself Inspirations in my Hometalk feed. Then when going through all the links from this week's Dare to Share, I was excited to see that it was linked up to the party as well. There are a lot of possibilities with this craft, because you can customize it in so many different ways for different holidays and seasons.   Not only are there directions on how to make this great craft, but ideas on what you can do with  other parts of a soda bottle as well. Be sure to stop over to Redo It Yourself Inspirations to see more. Thank you so much Robin for linking up your great idea to Dare to Share!

Read More »

Monday, January 5, 2015

New Year, New Resolutions

I took this picture one year ago today. We were hit with a foot of snow and frigid temps the day before we went back to school.  We ended up with a few extra days off.  Yesterday evening, it looked like we might have an extra day off this year as well..  Temps dropped from close to 40 to below zero with wind chills, turned all the rain we got the last few days into very icy roads.  The kids and I love school breaks, and the first day back is always hard. Getting up at 6 a.m. this morning was very rough.  We had mild temperatures the entire break, so getting up in the dark, on the coldest day of the season so far was not something we looked forward to.  In addition to being thrown back into the school routine, the Robotics season started over the weekend, and dance starts back up this week.  We have several busy nights ahead of us.  It is like going from 0 to 60, when you are not prepared. We feel like we have whiplash today.  It will take us a few days to get back into the swing of things.  

Getting back into the swing of things in other areas of life, is something many people think about this time of year.  The New Year makes one say they want to lose weight, and exercise more.  They may want to save more, and spend less. A big one for me over the years is to become more organized. (which just does not happen)   Going from 0 to 60 with resolutions is a sure way for it to fail.  Just like getting back into the school routine takes awhile, starting a new resolution routine takes a bit of time to as well. 

Starting this  month of January, I am going to be posting about common resolution goals, and how to realistically achieve them. In fact, I am going to be working on them myself, and share my progress on the blog.  Hopefully you will find something helpful along the way that will help you to your new year goals as well. 

Organization  I make this goal every year, and every year I fail.  I am just not an organized person, and I found out a few years ago that I have adult ADD.  This year I have no choice but to become more organized.  We may be  moving later in the year, and I have to get rid of a lot of unused stuff before we do. 

How I plan to achieve this goal.. I am starting in one room at a time, working on  a small task every day. I know I can not do too much at one time.  Not only does my schedule not give me a lot of extra time, but I know I will burn out too quickly. I will share tips I find, and anything ideas that work for me that may help you as well.

Lose Weight   This is a very common goal for a lot of people.  This has been my goal the last few years.  Back in 2012, I was diagnosed with Hashimotos thyroid disease, and since then, losing weight has been difficult for me.  I did not have issues with my weight until the last 4 or 5 years or so. I used to be able to eat whatever I wanted to (don't hate me) and I sometimes forget I can no longer do that. 

How I plan to achieve this goal..  The last couple of months I have been taking my oldest to appointments for some of her health issues.  A medication that she took made her gain a lot of weight, and she has not been able to lose it.  We have ruled out some other possible causes, and this past week saw the dietitian at the endocrinologist office.  Some of the ideas for her, I can use as well. Together, hopefully, we will both lose some pounds.  I found a great 100 calorie snack cookbook before Christmas, and hope to be sharing some healthy, low calorie recipes on the blog.  

Spend Less  I have actually been working on this for awhile, and have been pretty successful.  There are areas I still  need to work on though, like impulse buys.   I will be sharing more tips on how I save money at the grocery store, Target, and other stores.  By using smart shopping strategies I was able to get items worth $750 for only about $200 for Christmas. I will be posting more ideas on how you can do that too. 

Pay Off Debt  This resolution for me actually goes along with getting more organized. I have many items that are worth some money that I plan on selling online this year. This is a new experience for me, but I know once I figure out how to do it, the house will look better, and I will be able to pay off some bills.  I hope to share some of my strategies and tips as I find what works and what doesn't. 

Cook More   Like I mentioned at the beginning of this post, our schedules are going to be crazy the next few months.  Robotics is several nights a week, and dance is too. The times of the two activities are not at the same time.  While we might not be having traditional sit down dinners frequently, I hope to share more quick and easy meals, and crock pot dinners for busy families just like us.   

Do you have any resolutions that are you are working on?  Any good tips that you want to share?  I would love to hear about them. 

Read More »