Monday, November 12, 2012

Happy 6th Birthday SweetPea!

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{Don't forget about my $50 Tiny Prints Giveaway! Click HERE to enter}

My older daughter turns 6 today. I really can't believe how fast time has flown. She is so beautiful - inside and out - and makes us smile every day.

Ocean City, MD - July 2012

And you're doing so great in Kindergarten!! Reading on a first grade level! You make us so proud.

First day of Kindergarten - Sept 2012


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Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Cupcake Liner Turkeys {Kid Craft}

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{Don't forget about my $50 Tiny Prints Giveaway! Click HERE to enter}

How about a fun little craft to do with the kiddos in anticipation of Thanksgiving?

Simply gather some of these....

Mason Jar of Cupcake Liners

... plus some construction paper, a glue stick and some markers. Oh yeah, and the kids! :)

Step by step directions:
1 - Let the kiddos choose a cupcake liner.
2 - Have them fold the liner in half.
3 - Glue liner to the construction paper. (these are your feathers/body)
4 - Take a second cupcake liner (with a light bottom), have child cut bottom circle out and glue circle to folded liner. Draw face on glued-on circle.
4 - Decorate "feathers" with markers, if desired.
5 - Admire! :)

Of course you can get fancy and embellish with real feathers or whatever else, but we really enjoyed the simplicity of our turkeys. :)

Cupcake Liner Turkeys - easy kid craft

Above you see the masterpiece created by my 4 year old. Love those turkeys! We just hung ours on display for everyone to enjoy, but they would make really cute placemats for Thanksgiving too.

What Thanksgiving crafts do you enjoy making with your little ones?

Linking up to parties here - check 'em out!

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Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Tiny Prints Holiday Cards {Giveaway}

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So it's that time of year again! My annual post on Holiday Cards! :)

I love getting holiday cards. I really do! Partly because I just love receiving "snail mail" that isn't junk or bills. I mean really, who doesn't love getting a REAL letter?? Isn't it such a treat?? But I also love hearing from friends and family that I just don't get a chance to see or talk to very often. Some folks send out beautiful holiday designs with lovely messages of holiday cheer. Others send the annual newsletter which allows you to catch up on what they've been doing all year. And others go the photo card route giving you a visual glimpse into their current lives. I love them all, but admit that photo cards are my holiday greeting of choice. I just love to see those old familiar faces as well always observe how all the kids have changed and grown over the past year. SO FUN!

I've been sending photo cards for over 5 years now. Last year I tried Tiny Prints for the first time and couldn't have been more pleased. The cardstock they use is so quality! Check out this fun video...

Now that is some high-class cardstock!! And the design options are plentiful. Here's what we ended up going with for 2011... It was a square, front and back design for which I used some photos from our family vacation out west to Arizona last summer.

Wasn't it fun?? I loved it!

So I've decided to go with Tiny Prints again this year. They've got such an amazing selection of Holiday Photo Cards that there is definitely something to please everyone! Here are just a few that pique my fancy this year...

I think that last one may take the cake! ;)  But, seriously, I don't know how I'm going to choose! I can't wait to get started!

I recommend you give them a try too. They have so many fabulous choices in a variety of price ranges that they are sure to have something that suits your tastes and your budget! And be sure to check out their Special Offers page HERE to find a good deal.

Giveaway time!!!
One lucky RACKS and Mooby reader will win $50 off their total order at Tiny Prints!!
(Note: Code expires 12/14/2012 – no extensions! Code does not include shipping and cannot be combined with any other promos)

Use the Raf­fle­copter form below to enter! (give it a few seconds to load!) Giveaway ends November 14, 2012. Winner will be contacted by email so be sure I can reach you!

*GIVEAWAY CLOSED - winner announced below! * I never heard back from the first winner, so a new one was selected - check your email!*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

You can also check out the Tiny Prints Social Channels here:
• Facebook
• Twitter
• Pinterest
• Instagram: Tiny Prints
Google +
• Blog

Disclosure: This post has been sponsored by Tiny Prints. However, all opinions are 100% my own.

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Friday, July 13, 2012

Let there be light!

A little over a month ago I won a giveaway over on the awesome blog The CSI Project. My prize? The opportunity to design my very own lamp and lampshade from Lamps Plus using their very cool "Design It" feature! Woohoo!

We really were in desperate need of a new table lamp for our living room so this win was perfect timing. I played around with the different lamp bases available to me, but the real fun was in choosing a lamp shade. Talk about options! You get to choose from TONS of patterns but the really neat thing is that you can actually customize each of the colors used in that pattern. And you can even choose the trim color you want! Talk about personalization. Seriously, it was cool! And I highly recommend checking it out.

Anyway, we ended up going with a yellow shade as it is the accent color we're already using in that room. The lamp arrived within about a week of placing the order which was great. Here are a few pics of the lamp in the room.

And one final "full room" shot.

Well, I'm no interior decorator (I'm a numbers gal, remember?!), but I think it looks pretty darn nice! :)

What do you think? YAY for giveaways!! :)

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

How to {frugally} Dress up a Dessert Plate

I know I am a little late with this post as it relates to a craft I did for the 4th of July, but you really can use this "trick" for any occassion so I figured I would share it anyway. It's fast, super easy and cheap frugal. Just the way I like it! {TWSS} ;)

How to dress up a simple dessert plate

We went to a BBQ for the 4th of July and were asked to bring a dessert. I raided my pantry and found a box of funfetti brownie mix that I had bought on clearance after Christmas for some ridiculous price like 50 cents. The kids helped me whip the brownies up and instead of using the green, red and white "funfettis" that came with the mix (since the colors weren't exactly patriotic), we used our own mix of sprinkles from the pantry and just sprinkled them on top. YUM!

Who doesn't love some gooey brownies??

When it came time to pack them up and head out to the BBQ, I decided not to use one of my fancy glass/metal/ceramic platters so I wouldn't have to worry about cleaning it off when we left or leaving it there or whatever. So instead, I went for my dessert plate "trick" of choice which is to dress up a simple disposable plate.

First I selected a plate. I've done this before using those nice thick paper plates but didn't have any in my "stash" that day, so instead, I used a simple white stryofoam plate. Really any type of disposable plate will work for this project as long as the plate isn't too thick. You'll see why in a minute...

Next I took a hole puncher and made holes around the outer lip of the plate - about 1" apart. I just eyeballed it. (This is why you don't want the plate to be too thick or plastic or something that would be difficult to hole punch).

Then I found a piece of ribbon in my "stash" and threaded it through the holes.

Tie it off with a bow and TA-DAAA! From drab to FAB! :)

Since it looked a little too valentine-ish with all that red and white, I colored a few simple stars in the gaps with a blue Sharpie. Much better and definitely nice and patriotic. :)

Everyone thought the plate was so cute and I had no qualms about leaving it at the BBQ to be thrown away later!

What are some of your favorite ways to dress up otherwise plain items?

Linking up to these fun parties - be sure to check them out:
Someday Crafts
The Thrifty Home
The Frugal Girls

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Tuesday, June 26, 2012

New Pillsbury Baguette Chips Review and a GIVEAWAY!

*This post is sponsored by General Mills through MyBlogSpark.

Source: General Mills via MyBlogSpark

As first mentioned HERE, I am a member of the online communicaty, "MyBlogSpark" through which I have the opportunity to "connect, share, and discuss" my thoughts on various products. Recently, I was asked to try out a new treat from Pillsbury called "Baguette Chips". Since they sounded so yummy, I said "why not?!" so they sent me a gift pack that included 3 bags of Pillsbury Baguette Chips in Italian Cheese & Herb and 3 bags in Cheddar Sundried Tomato.

Source: General Mills via MyBlogSpark

They arrived last week and we've been sampling away. Now before I give you my opinion on these chips, I'll share some stock information on the product:

"Looking for ways to spice up your snacking routines? Pillsbury knows just how you feel and wants to awaken your taste buds with their new Pillsbury Baguette Chips! These hearty chips are sliced from oven baked bread and topped with savory seasonings bringing the unique and contemporary flavors of Italian Cheese & Herb and Cheddar Sun-dried Tomato to gourmet snack chips. The delicious flavors and perfect texture of these crispy chips can help you round out any recipe.
Enjoy Pillsbury Baguette Chips for a wide range of occasions: eat them alone, add a bit more flavor to your favorite dip, spice up soup, or add some crunch to your salad!

With 130 calories per serving (21 baguette chips), and 50% less fat than regular potato chips*, Pillsbury Baguette Chips are delicious snack chips that you can feel good about eating.
*Pillsbury Baguette Chips (5g fat per 29g serving); regular potato chips (11g fat per 29g serving).  See nutrition information for sodium content."

As mentioned, I was sent 3 bags of each flavor for sampling. Here is a photo of the Italian Cheese & Herb variety right out of the bag...

My first impression was "Wow! They're a lot smaller than I expected!". I placed them next to a dime for these photos to give you an idea of the size.

And here is a photo of the Cheddar Sun-dried Tomato variety...

Straight out of the bag and completely plain I have to say that I really liked the taste of these chips. They were really crunchy and had good flavor. And although the small size initially surprised me, it didn't detract from the yummy taste. Personally, I preferred the Cheddar Sun-Dried Tomato. I really liked the Italian Herb ones too, but found they were not as consistent in the amount of flavor on each chip. The Heela (my husband) had a hard time choosing for the same reason I just stated and ultimately said he also preferred the Cheddar Sun-Dried Tomato. Unfortunately, my 4 and 5 year old girls refused to try either one. *sigh*. 

I decided to try them with a little cream cheese to offset the "crunch" with some "smooth" and was really pleased with how nice the contrast worked.

After eating a few more, I found that I actually really liked the smaller size of these chips. It made them more appropriate in my mind for a snack as oposed to other baguette 'chips' I've seen before that are more appetizer-sized. They are thinner too which made them more enjoyable, in my opinion. I think they are a nice alternative to regular chips and would definitely recommend trying them if you're looking for something a little different.

To download a printable coupon for $0.75 off one package, visit today!

Now for the fun stuff...


One lucky RACKS and Mooby reader will receive (3) Bags of Pillsbury Baguette Chips in Italian Cheese & Herb and (3) Bags of Pillsbury Baguette Chips in Cheddar Sundried Tomato (you'll receive 6 bags total!).  To enter this giveaway, in the comment section below, let me know which flavor you’d like to see Pillsbury Baguette Chips come out with next?

**Giveaway Closed - winner has been contacted by email (congrats Lisa!)**

This giveaway will end on July 2 at 5 pm EST. Winners will be contacted by email so please be sure to provide it in your comment (if not already linked to your profile).

Note: Giveaway is limited to US residents only.

For more information feel free to visit:
Pillsbury Website:
Pillsbury Facebook Page:
Pillsbury Twitter Page:

Disclosure:  As part of my participation in this Spark from MyBlogSpark, I was provided (3) Bags of Pillsbury Baguette Chips in Italian Cheese & Herb and (3) Bags of Pillsbury Baguette Chips in Cheddar Sundried Tomato. The opinions expressed herein are my own and have not been influenced by the receipt of the chips. The product, gift pack, information in quotes above, and additional sample have been provided by General Mills through MyBlogSpark.

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Monday, June 25, 2012

Re-Generate your Green Onions? It's true!

Several months ago I saw an idea on Pinterest that claimed you could re-generate green onions simply by placing the cut off stems in a cup of water. Ummmmm. Really? I mean, REALLY??? OK, I gotta admit, I was pretty skeptical. In fact, I didn't even repin it to any of my boards as I wasn't sure I was buying it.

Well, I happened to have a bundle of green onions on hand the other day for a recipe. So, I decided to give the old idea a try. I mean, it was worth a try, right? Well... follow me this way...

First I cut off the green stems and left the white roots strapped together by a rubber band.

How to re-generate green onions

Then I dropped the bundle into a small tupperware container, added some water and placed it on the pathetic miniscule just plain old sad excuse of a window ledge in the kitchen.

re-grow your green onions

Then I waited.

But not long.


By Day 3, my stubs looked like this...

And by Day 5, we were here...

And just ONE day later we already had this!

On to Day 8...

And here we are at Day 15. So it took about 2 weeks to get to this point. A not-quite-so-perfect, but damn-good-enough batch of green onions! WOW!

Regenerated Green Onions

What do you know?? It actually worked! Go figure! I will never buy green onions again! OK, well, that may not be true. To be honest, my re-growth isn't quite as "hardy" as a new batch of onions from the grocery store would be. But they'll work! And I can't say if these will re-generate again after I cut off those new green stems. BUT, I defintiely plan to give it a try! :) And I'll be sure to come back and update ya!

In the meantime, I highly recommend this trick at least once!

This post has been featured! Thank you so much! Please be sure to check out these fabulous blogs and their parties!


Linking up to these fun parties:

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