Friday, January 21, 2011

A Little Treat

Such a simple variation on a classic snack....
Who would have thought that the addition of some red M&M could make our average Rice Krispie Treats extra yummy and extra 'Valentine's Day' special! 
Try adding something different to your normal routine today and see what fun happens:)
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*Check back later today for a fun twist on Valentine's for your kiddos to take to their friends at school!*
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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Adventures in Laundry

Alternately titled: The Joys of Doing Laundry with a 2 year old!
 Yes, that is a tinker toy in my washing machine. It was found after the washing cycle was completely finished!
 At least he does help sometimes:)
Apparently this is what happens to little kids clothes when you fluff them in the dryer a little too long!
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What kind of laundry adventures have you had lately?
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Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Unoffical Review of The Cinch 5 Day Fast Forward

**Edited to add...I totally forgot I managed to get a few pics of our yummy food from last week. Scroll down a little to see:)**

Somehow I forgot that yesterday was a holiday...which meant that the boys were out of school, Jason was off work, and we {mostly Jason} spent the long weekend working on a few home improvement projects! That also means that I didn't manage to type up the post I promised on Friday! So here is my take on the new Cinch 5 Day Fast Forward diet plan.

**disclaimer**
The first thing I have to mention is that I didn't actually read the book {it is at the top of my shopping list though}, but I do recommend the book to anyone who is going to try this diet/cleanse. I watched the Rachael Ray segment with Cynthia Sass the creator of the Cinch plan, and then I did a little research online. I tried to buy the book, but my Target didn't have it in stock. Jason & I were ready to start last Monday morning, so instead of waiting for the book to be mail or searching all over town to find it, we just worked with what we knew and took it from there.

The Basics
This is a type of cleanse that allows you to eat 5 foods for 5 days, and the program promises that you will lose 8 pounds.

From Cynthia Sass's website:
"I selected these foods because each is filling, rich in detoxifying and health-protecting nutrients, and has been scientifically shown to specifically support weight loss. You’ll eat these five superfoods in specific combinations daily for five days to give your body, mind, and taste buds a fresh start and achieve the results you need to feel motivated and confident - up to an eight pound loss in five days."

The Food
The 5 foods that you can have on this program are spinach, eggs, almonds, raspberries, and plain yogurt. Jason and I bought all these things for the week, but we did end up modifying the plan to work for us. From what I researched you are allowed:
breakfast: one egg scrambled with one cup of spinach
berries and almonds
lunch: yogurt parfait with berries and almonds
dinner: large spinach salad with berries and almonds
boiled egg
snack: yogurt smoothie with berries


Again I have to say that because I didn't read the book, this is just what I have gathered from researching online. Jason and I ended up substituting blueberries for the raspberries because we aren't fans of raspberries and we also ended up mixing half flavored yogurt with the plain yogurt because the plain was a little to bitter for us.

The Results
At the end of the 5 days, Jason was down 8 pounds and I was down 9 pounds! A huge success if you ask me! During the week, I found that I wasn't nearly as hungry as I thought I would be. I actually ended up not eating all the spinach that was allowed per day {because I wasn't a big fan and because I really wasn't that hungry}. I highly recommend this plan to anyone who wants to see quick results but also to anyone who is trying to not just lose weight, but to eat healthier too! I plan on getting the book soon so that we can start the rest of the 25 days of the Cinch diet plan!
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If you have any other questions about the diet or just want to know more before you purchase the book, there is a great Q&A section on Cynthia Sass' website HERE!
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Friday, January 14, 2011

Valentine's Cupcake Inspiration

Last year I made the cutest heart shaped cupcakes...using marbles:)
Click HERE to see original post and the step by step!
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Today, Tip Junkie shared 8 really cute cupcakes including these SUPER fun cupcakes in a cone and these adorable cherry cupcakes.
Hoosier Homemade shared these yummy Raspberry Cordial Cupcakes.
Be Different, Act Normal shared a ton of yummy cupcakes that she had found at Cupcakes Take the Cake.
And I adore these Handwritten Cupcakes from the Martha Stewart website!!
And now that I've got you all drooling over these gorgeous cupcakes, check back on Monday for my very unofficial review of the new diet Cinch that I told you about earlier this week. FYI: So far it is awesome and I highly recommend buying the book and checking it out yourself:)
Have a great weekend...don't eat too many cupcakes!!
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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Valentine Hula Hoop Wreath

The supplies for this project are pretty simple...a hula hoop, some pretty fabric, yarn, and a little bit of cardboard. I picked up my hula hoops at The Dollar Tree for $1 each. They come in a few different sizes, and the smallest one that they have is the perfect size for a wreath....and a lot cheaper than most large sized wreath forms out there. I also picked up some fun Valentine fabrics at Hobby Lobby...30% off! You can use scrap fabric for this project too, but for some reason I have very few pink and red fabrics in my collection:)
You start by wrapping the hula hoop with yarn. I tied a knot in the end of my yarn to get it started and then held the end in place while I wrapped a few times. You could also hot glue the end down to make it a little more stable. Wrap the entire hula hoop with your yarn...it probably took me a little over an hour to do while I was watching tv.
The next step is to cut a heart shape out of cardboard. You can use anything you have around your house...cereal boxes or some heavy cardstock should work fine. I used a baby wipe box which is a pretty heavy duty cardboard. Punch a hole in the heart shape where you want to add your hanger. I decided to hang my heart a little crooked, but you could do it right in the center also.
Cut you fabric into strips. I did mine about a 1/2 inches wide and as long as my piece of fabric.
Fold the strips of fabric in half with the wrong sides together and then twist. Once you get them twisted put a small bead of hot glue around the outside edge of the cardboard heart and carefully put your strip of fabric on the heart.



Continue to add your twisted strips of fabrics around the heart shape. Be sure to leave the hole you punched earlier open so that you can thread a piece of fabric or ribbon through as a hanger. I also added a little tulle ruffle to the back of my heart. I simply added a little hot glue to the back and folded and glued the tulle in place.

To finish your wreath, take your completed fabric covered heart and tie it to your yarn covered hula hoop using a strip of fabric or some coordinating ribbon.
This is what two wreaths look like on my front door:
FYI...It is really difficult to get two wreaths perfectly level when the hook is a good 3 feet over your head:)
Visit thecsiproject.com
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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: Mom's Little Anti-Helper

**In non-Wordless Wednesday related news**
Bonus points from Monday's post go to Amanda for being the first to identify the hula hoops in my picture, and to Mimi for being the first to guess that I was making a hula hoop wreath! Check back tomorrow to see the finished project:)
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Monday, January 10, 2011

Miscellany Monday

I.
Monday blogging has become particularly difficult for me lately. I think mostly because I haven't been crafting or taking pictures as much as usual, which means I don't have any posts pre-scheduled. So on Monday mornings I feel a little pressure to be creative {or talkative} and post something while still trying to do the regular Monday morning mom routine!
II.
Jason and I are attempting a new diet/cleanse/torture treatment this week. I actually saw this on the Rachael Ray show and then I saw a book review on a blog. It sounds pretty easy....except not really! You eat the same five foods for five days and they 'guarantee' you will lose 8 pounds.
The 5 foods are:
Eggs
Spinach
Yogurt
Almonds
Raspberries
I figure I can torture myself for five days and hopefully see some results...though I have a feeling I am going to be starving by Saturday and I'm going to be sick of eating eggs:)
III.
 I picked up a few crafting supplies this weekend! I love having an excuse to make something fun and girly...and Valentine's Day is a great excuse for something pink! Because you know a mom of three boys NEEDS an excuse to make something girly every once in a while:)
*Bonus points to the first person who guesses what craft I'm working on and what materials are in this picture*
IV.
My SUPER awesome hubby spent part of yesterday working on some new shelves for our laundry room. We already had the bottom layer of cubbies, but we had too much stuff and not enough space....so he made a second shelf to add to the top. Now I just need to work on getting it organized and possible cute:) I love all the fun and decorated laundry rooms out there....and mine is SUPER boring! I'm hoping these new shelves inspire me to dress up my laundry room a little.
V.
Click on the button to check out everyone's miscellany Monday...plus Carrisa also has a giveaway going on today too:)
Miscellany Monday @ lowercase letters
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Friday, January 7, 2011

See-Through Valentines

I love the idea of homemade Valentines! They just seem like so much more fun than the store bought kind...though I will admit to using store bought Valentines a ton of times more than once in my life:) For the most part, I have managed to make homemade Valentines with the boys for their school parties though.
When I saw these SUPER cute See-Through Valentines on Martha Stewart.com, I knew I had to give them a try...even if they aren't what I end up sending to school with the boys on Valentine's Day!
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I had a ton of M&M's left over from THIS Christmas craft...perfect for filling my See-Through Valentines! I just sorted out the red M&M's from the green ones:)
 I used my Cricut to cut two hearts {make sure they are the same size} out of wax paper. You could easily do this by hand if you don't have a Cricut, I just knew I couldn't cut out a perfectly shaped heart by hand:)
*can you see where some little mischievous hands got Sharpie on my Cricut mat*
 I used my sewing machine to sew the two hearts together. Again, this could totally be done by hand if you have the patience to hand sew things!
Make sure to leave about a two inch space open so that you can fill your Valentine with candy. I used my leftover M&M's but redhots or conversation hearts would also be really cute in these! Fill the hearts with candy and the sew up the opening with your sewing machine.
Trim off any excess threads and you have a really cute homemade See-Through Valentine that anyone would love to recieve! You could also attach a small gift tag to them or write a special message on the wax paper with a permanent marker.
To enjoy the yummy candy inside the See-Through Valentine, simply tear the wax paper!
I have another idea in mind for Valentines for the boys' to hand out at school, so I think I may make a batch of these See-Through Valentines for my Sunday School class! Kindergarteners would love these:)

linked up at:
Jen's Weekend Wrap Up Party:)
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Thursday, January 6, 2011

Oh I Wish I Were an Organized Person

Apparently January is all about organizing.
Great! Who doesn't like a little bit of organization in their lives....less clutter & more space sounds good to me. But where do you start when you feel like you may just be as far from organized as any one person can be?!? Well if you are me, you start small...really small.

Magazines.
I have a bunch of magazines. I know it is kind of old school to save magazines, when it is so easy to have a folder on you computer to store all of your found inspirations. BUT, I love that I can pull out a Martha Stewart magazine from 3 years ago and get a great idea for a Christmas craft that 3 years ago I completely overlooked.










My only problem was I had two shelves of very unorganized magazines, so if I wanted to find a few inspirations for a Valentine's Day project it took a while to find all the February issues. My very simple solution was to sort all my magazines by month, thus making it much easier to find exactly what I was looking for. I made twelve different stacks and got busy sorting.
I started on the left hand side of the shelf and placed the magazines January through December...with a little extra room for a few more magazines:)
When I finally recover from the craziness that was Christmas, and I decide to work on Valentine's Day crafts, all of my February magazine are all in one place waiting to inspire me!

What kind of organizing projects are you working on?

linked up at:
Jen's Weekend Wrap Up Party:)
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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Back to Reality

We are back to real life today after a LONG two weeks! Back to reality around here means:
*Woke up had to drag myself out of bed at 6:30*
*Dropped Henry and Grant off at school*
*Jason left for work{late}*
*Eli and I headed to the walking track*
*Correctly portioned way too small bowl of Special K for breakfast*
*A couple hours of cleaning and laundry in my future*
*Forcing myself to eat healthy and somehow avoid the tons of leftover Christmas candy*

I have been such a bad blogger lately. Not only have I not posted anything or commented on my favorite blogs, but I also haven't done anything blog worthy either!! That means it may be a while before you see anything good posted here:) My craft dining room has been stuck in a time warp since a few days before Christmas aka there is still glitter everywhere and except for attempting to use my new ruffler that I got for Christmas nothing has moved for at least a week! What's even worse than not crafting, is that I also haven't taken ANY pictures! I think the one and only picture I have taken since Christmas morning was taken with my cell phone!

Jason and I went to Jacksonville, Florida to see the Mississippi State Bulldogs play in the Gator Bowl last weekend. It was a great trip made even better by the fact that State beat STOMPED Michigan 52-14! It was good for us that State won, because we were almost completely surrounded by Michigan fans....we were the only State fans on our whole row and we were really close to the Michigan band:) It was a quick trip, but fun! I did the math on the way home, and we were gone for about 37 hours and 14 of that was spent driving!

Do you make resolutions?!? I don't really...I think I just start out the year telling myself that I want to be better. Better at everything...diet, exercise, prayer, family, cleaning, blogging. It usually works for the first few months of the year, and then I get lazy and give up:) I actually managed to lose 10 pounds during the first 6 weeks of 2010, and then a little more during the summer. BUT the "evil trinity of diet-busting holidays" {Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas} hit and weight loss turned into weight gain. I'm making a few new goals this year and hopefully they will last longer than last year:)

I linked up one of my craft projects at Sew Dang Cute with the hopes of getting to participate in Crafting with the Stars:) Sounds like fun huh?!? Plus it would be great motivation to be more crafty this year! Go over and check out all the great projects and don't forget to click on my Recycled Frame Wreath {# 98} that I linked up:)





Eli is watching his most favorite cartoon ever {Diego}, so I need to go take advantage of this little bit of time and get busy cleaning and maybe a little crafting and picture taking too:)
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