Thursday, September 27, 2012

Food Allergies

So I don't really talk about this much but since having children (3 of the 4) with food allergies, I often avoid certain things for our family. I do sometimes experiment which substitutions but often times we avoid certain things all together.

One of those things that I love is banana bread, and I haven't made it ever from scratch and I refused to make it from a pack because I know that the ingredients could have nuts in it. And no matter what nut I wanted to put in it at least one of my children with allergies would be allergic to it. And it never crossed my mind to actually make it without nuts. Which is weird because we make chocolate chip cookies, and brownies and every other dessert that calls for nuts without them.

So today I looked at my fruit basket and thought I really want to make banana bread with those really ripe bananas. I have been freezing the bad ones for months for smoothies or milkshakes but I really wanted banana bread.

So I searched online for the perfect quick recipe to make before the kids got home from school and it was one that jumped right out at me from here

And although it took an hour to cook it was nice to have this waiting for the kids for an after school snack...
And they loved it! I pulled out my glass cake stand that I got for $2 at a garage sale and it looks really cute on the stand. I love fall, it's cool enough to experiment with baking recipes and not feel like you are burning up! So this week I say if it's cooling down where you are at, try a recipe that you haven't tried or haven't made in awhile.  Smiles, Tracy

Monday, September 24, 2012

So fall is officially here...

I used to associate fall with having a little more time to relax and do crafting projects. Well in that was the case in the state that I used to live in, but not so much here. The temperature changes a little during this season but not by much. And for the most part there are things that I have on my to-do list that are calling my names.

I don't have a lot of fall decorations for the outside of the house. In fact, I never purchased anything for our first house. And honestly I was not really thinking that I was going to do that just yet for this house. I think that if you put up fall themed decorations some people associate those decorations with celebrating a certain day of October that we don't celebrate at all. And in our last house I put up a wreath one year and that was the year that we received knocks on our door that night (even with the lights off). So I was thinking that maybe I wouldn't do anything. But I really do want something that says Have a Blessed Thanksgiving/ autumn or something. I am thinking vinyl. And I knew that I was going to do a wreath again. But I couldn't find on that I loved. So I picked up an undecorated Christmas wreath from Walmart and some floral items from the Dollar Tree. And I was good, well that was until I headed to the 50% off sale at my local Goodwill and saw that there was a wood branch wreath for $1.50. It had roses on it and I got rid of those because that isn't exactly what I had planned for my fall wreath and the size isn't perfect but it will work and so I got all my supplies together.

And sat them on the kitchen table for a few hours before I decided that I need to just do it.

Once it was completed which actually took a few hours because I was working on it while completing a project for LT's room and working on a picture frame that I love. And I loved the finished wreath. And I went to hang it last night but that was interrupted by spider killing, and watching baby toads and finally looking at the stars. So I sat it on the hall floor. This morning I decided that it was time to get it on the door. But when deciding that I was stumped because wasn't sure if I wanted to add a nail again in the door since I had to patch the previous nail hole because hubby just ripped the Christmas wreath off with the nail. The wreath was ok but the door not so much. But I decided to just do it. And I screwed in a nail and made an actual hanger with burlap that I had in my stash. It turned out perfectly.

So for a total cost of approximately $10 (because I didn't use all the floral stuff I bought) I now have a fall wreath that I honestly now love. Adding the burlap made it perfect and it went from being an ok wreath to me to being perfect.  And now I have plans to get other items that are fall themed for the front of the house. I am thinking maybe a huge planter and some fall related something or another?

And now I see that I need to touch up the trim more and scrap off some excess paint on the door kick.

Happy Fall Blessings! Smiles, Tracy

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Garage door...what an improvement!!!

The entry way into our home from the garage was always an issue for me when it came to the look and feel of the door. It was a plain white door that I wiped down honestly at least 2xs a day. And the day that we had a garage sale I wiped it down way more than that. And it was getting to the point where it also was becoming dingy as well. I believe it was partly due to the flat builder's grade paint. I hoped to paint the house rooms all before starting to work on projects that didn't really matter too much to anymore but me, but sometimes you just feel enough is enough.

So I pulled out my paint samples that I had gotten from Lowes for painting our bedroom and mixed several colors together to get what was as close to dark turquoise as possible. I didn't want to buy paint because I honestly knew that I will most likely change this in the long run because I will paint the entire garage when I purchase the above shelving system and storage containers.  And I began painting the door. It looked ok and I honestly was fine with it but I wanted something more. Then I decided that it would look better if I distressed it and so I added the black/espresso stain. It was almost perfect and then that's when I decided to pull out my cricut and cut a sign.  And now it is absolutely awesome. The sign is truly a trial and error experiment and I honestly will be doing that over too when I get more vinyl.

What I learned is that any vinyl works in my cricut. And I used painters tape (in place of the cricut transfer tape) because I didn't have the correct tape. As I stated this was a project that I decided to just do. I also learned that it would maybe be easier to make the sign straight by making very light lines or my leveler. And finally I will add some decorative elements to the design next time. Maybe a flourish or some sort of scroll. But the best part it how easy I can do the whole design with MTC!

Well I am off to take care of my 2 sick ones. Which is the one major issue with having children in public school...all the cooties that are spread!

Monday, September 17, 2012

I love surfing the web and reading decorating ideas. I often think that I should share more ideas that I have about my own home. I mean I have shown things that I am working on and maybe given some tips but I haven't really shared too many details. I am hoping to change this.

So today I took these supplies                      

and began labeling my storage containers that I did have in my pantry and baking cabinet. I was on pinterest and I saw some chalk board labels. Now I knew that Hobby Lobby carried that chalkboard vinyl and  instead of waiting to do this project, I went to pick up a roll. Well first off that place is addictive for those of us that love all things decorative. I have since made a wishlist of things that I just have to get once I can afford to do a little fun shopping for the house.

So I got the chalkboard vinyl ( a little under $6 with tax), and then used my chalkboard markers that I also picked up from Hobby Lobby months ago (for our family menu chalkboard) and pulled out my old reliable Big Shot and cut some labels using a Spellbinders Nestabilities die set (Labels 4) and this is what my pantry looks like right now.

I have also went over my storage containers that I had used white rub ons to label over a year ago and re-did those with these labels as well. I know that my containers don't all match and I need a few a lot  more but this is something that I am not in a rush to complete or willing to invest loads of money into at this time (especially because I want to do our kitchen and great room). But I do love the black labels.  I really like that I used a few scrapbooking tools to make my home better.

I am hoping to find the mother load of storage options at a garage sale...that would truly be awesome!

So I was wondering if other people use a pantry and cabinets for for food storage. I was thinking about this because I have a pantry but I used 3 of my other 5 cabinets for junk food, baking, and spice storage. I have been thinking about maybe putting the junk food in the pantry too but I think that it would make it to easy for the little ones to get to more junk food items instead of the health stuff that I would prefer for them to have. And it doesn't seem to make sense to store spices in my pantry since I cook on the other side of the kitchen. Plus my baking goods are all by the stove and baking pans. I guess now that I think of it, it makes perfect sense for me not to store all my items in the pantry.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hello everyone. There has been many things going on here with the family. I have completed the organization of the pantry and I actually pick-up some storage items from my local thrift store this last weekend while they were having a 50% off sale (although I originally didn't want to purchase anything at all).  I wasn't able to get a lot of them so I am not going to be taking pictures and sharing them right now. I did however finally luck out and find picture frames that will fit the license plates of the states that we lived in and visited, these frames are 6x12 and perfect. I haven't gotten all the plates (still need IL, WI, AZ). I spray painted them and cleaned up the plates (they were really dirty) and they are now sitting on the office desk waiting to be put on the walls.

And once that is done, I will need to find some amazing frames for the 12x12 scrapbook pages that are going to be under the plates. I am thinking that it would be really nice to get vacation pages mounted on the wall (under that states license plate) and also maybe that will be the push to get out and vacation more as well as take new family pictures. I am wondering if I should maybe redo a couple of the pages so that they are more my current style of scrapbooking but I will see.

Well I have no pictures to share just yet because nothing is exactly photo taking quality right now but hopefully it will be soon.  Well until next time. Smiles, Tracy