Tuesday, December 27, 2011

What I learned this year- 2011

My happiness is important.

I can control my happiness through my thoughts.

Popcorn  may help the immune system. (shocking!)  ANTIOXIDANTS IN POPCORN

Not all doctors are created equal.

I enjoy the challenge of taking a good photo.

Life is very peaceful without my brother in it.

I'm turning out to be a lot like my mom.  And that's not so bad.

Estranged relationships are even better after they are repaired, better than they originally were.

My parents really did love me when I was a teenager. (and they still do! lol)

To trust my instincts when I feel manipulated.

My boys will never understand me because they are now MEN. (Sob. My heart justbrokealittle)

Good things DO happen to good people.

Not everything has to be bought with a coupon. (gasp!)

Just because a family member is a taker does not mean I'm obligated to give. 

Boundaries work!!!!!

Letting go is the hardest thing EVER!


I AM a strong person. I can survive without credit cards and dinners out every week.  (It's funny how I never even thought twice about this until hearing so many people complain about having to do without these things THANK YOU WHINERS, you are good for something! heh heh)

 I love the library.  Oh wait. I already knew that.  But, this year just confirmed my love. :-)

Some people tell lies because they have a low self esteem and need to feel better about themselves. Which has nothing to do with me.

I have some work to do this coming year.  People to forgive... and people to ask forgiveness from.

 Hey, I guess 2011 Hasn't been too bad. Looks like I've done a lot of much needed healing. :-)

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Frugal Winter Theme Table

It was time for a change of scenery! I searched the internet for some inspiration and found this table display HERE.  Now I had to figure out how to do it on a dime, Goodwill here I come! That's where I found the white/silver vase in the center.  Not only did I find the gorgeous vase, but also the candle stick holders, pillar candle holders, and the two little crystal dishes. 

I searched my yard for some pine cones... and painted them silver, along with the candle stick holders and pillar holders.

They were screaming at me on the Goodwill shelf to be painted! (ha) Be sure to do your painting outside.  This stuff is stinky!

I took advantage of the hurricane glasses I made for my Fall table setting.  You can find out how to make them HERE.  I love how they look like completely new vases with the ornaments inside!

I found the White Poinsettia flowers at Wal-Mart for $3 each. I only needed two bunches. While I was there I picked up two white pillar candles for $2.88 each.  Put it all together and (jump up and down crazy happy), I had an inexpensive, absolutely gorgeous table!

Total cost breakdown.

Two pewter candle stick holders found at Goodwill- $3.06 x 2= $6.12
Two Pillar candle holders found at Goodwill- $1.06 x 2= $2.12
Two crystal dishes found at Goodwill- $1.06 x 2= $2.12
One large white/silver vase found at Goodwill- $8.99
 Faux White Poinsettia's found at Wal-Mart- $3.00 x 2= $6.00
 Two white unscented pillar candles found at Wal-Mart- $2.88 x 2= $5.76
 One can of Rustoleum  metallic silver paint at Wal-Mart- $4.76
One pkg of silver shatterproof ornaments found at Wal-Mart- $4.99
Already had the table cloth. It's actually one made for Spring time (shhhhh).

  Not too bad.... It could be even less if you already have some things on hand! It is amazing how much a can of silver paint makes a difference! Pssst... in case you are wondering what is inside those little crystal vases, it's coffee beans.  Not cheap. I know.  But, they smell  SO good!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas. It's Magical.

After reading a post that I found on Pinterest HERE, I simply could not wait to photograph my Christmas tree! Can't you just see a sleigh with eight tiny reindeer circling it? My Christmas tree may have the starring role, but that rocking chair is the real magic. It's the same rocking chair that I rocked my two babies in (who are now grown young men).  So many sweet, sweet memories.

  I do realize my photo isn't nearly as well done as my inspirational blogger's is, but I am going to have joy for what I was able to accomplish! Because Christmas IS just that. Magical!  And even though it's not a perfect photo, I love it. Why not have joy for all things even if they aren't perfect? Perfection is impossible anyways.  I challenge you to focus on the small things in your life that you think aren't all that great, as something joyful. Your cookies might be burned. Your decorations might not be as grand as the Griswold's. The top button of your pants may have just popped off. But, you are ALIVE. Be joyful.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Thanks Alot!

I'm joining a fellow blogger with a post of the ABC's of thankfulness. Here goes...
A.  Angels- the only way I can get any morsel of peace. Just knowing there are angels that can watch over the ones I love when I am not able to.
B.  Birthdays

C.  Carrots make the most moist and flavorful cake. No matter what someone may say about vegetables not belonging in cake. :)
D.  Dreams make me eager to get out of bed. 
E.  Exploring the nearby river We love to explore!

F.  Father who I am now speaking to.

G. Graduation

H.  Hearing- I love music.  Not to mention that the ability to hear makes life so much easier. I know this first hand from watching my brother struggle. 
I. Ideas for free- internet is a wonderful thing
J.  Junking at the Goodwill- So many treasures there!
K. Knowledge
L. Laughter

M.  My Mom who goes long distances to see me. 

N.  Newspaper - Where would we be without all those great coupons?!
O.  Open mind
P.   Pranks

Q.  Quiet moments
R. Really hard workers

S. Salt with iodine- It helps low thyroid. So thankful to be getting some of my energy back!
T. Traditional Punch
U.  Understanding husband (with grease on his nose... he was teaching Austin how to change brake pads on my sister's truck)

V.  Valuable friends on facebook
W. Work from home- Happy to be able to start a business at home making buttons, mirrors and magnets. It's a wonderful thing and a work in progress.
X.  XOXOX  Life wouldn't be the same without them.
Y.  Young men in my life Gatlin and Austin
Z.  Zippers to keep my pants up. Don't laugh. You know you're thankful too! 

    Finding Joy | The ABC's of Thanks  

Hi peanut butter cup. Meet Cookie.

What could be better than a peanut butter cup inside of a cookie?  Me: almost nothing.  I'm a full blown Reese lover.  I found this recipe on All Recipes website.
Find out how to make them HERE.  One thing I realized was that I needed to measure the amount of cookie dough before putting it into the mini muffin pan.  I used a measuring spoon. The Tbsp worked really well. 

It was a struggle not eating those peanut butter cups while waiting on the cookie to finish baking! But, I prevailed!

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Baking Therapy

This is the result of my baking therapy.  When I'm upset, I bake. When I'm angry I clean.  So, right now I have a clean house and it's full of these little pumpkin loaves. Not so bad, right? They are yummy.  We spread cream cheese frosting on them and they were delish! I feel much better now!

I got the recipe from ALL RECIPES.  It's good, but I adapted it.  I always cut the oil in half and add applesauce.  I didn't have cloves, so I increased the amount of cinnamon. 


  • 3 cups canned pumpkin puree
  • 3/4 cups vegetable oil and 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 3 cups white sugar, 1 cup brown sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  •   3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground nutmeg


  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour three 9x5 inch loaf pans.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together the pumpkin, oil, sugar, and eggs. Combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves; stir into the pumpkin mixture until well blended. Divide the batter evenly between the prepared pans.
  3. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes to 1 hour. The top of the loaf should spring back when lightly pressed.

I think they came out a little too sweet.  If I make it again, I will cut down the sugar.  I'm sure the frosting didn't help any in the sugar content...but hey, it was screaming, "I NEED FROSTING". 

Sunday, October 23, 2011

I Want To Know

I want to know when will it ever feel like my kids are not kids anymore.  When will I stop feeling the need to be sure they have balanced meals, safe vehicles to drive, or enough money?

I have been thinking about something that happened at a friends mom's home last year.  We were standing outside in the mom's driveway and she came out and told my friend that he needed to be sure everyone was out of the driveway because they were leaving and needed to back out.  My friend is my age.  Old enough to know that when a car starts moving in your direction that he needs to move.  And I am sure I am old enough to know that too.  Yet, his mom felt the need to give her motherly advice like we were all five years old or something.  He muttered something under his breath and moved onto the grass and made a sarcastic comment to us that we needed to move too. It was humorous.  But, I am sure, somewhat humiliating for him. I thought the same way he did.  That his mother was being quite ridiculous.  She might has well brought him a juice box too.

Today, I am feeling like his mom.  It seems like letting go will never come.  Do I have to fully let go? If I do, will I stop being a mom?  I have been a mom my entire adult life.  How can I stop being a mom?

 But, do I really want to be that kind of mom?  Can I help myself from being that kind of mom? And if I am not that kind of mom anymore, am I really being me?   Or maybe I am just being ridiculous.  Oh brother.  Someone pass me a juice box please.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Make Your Own Camera Bag

 Friends, bloggers, crafters! Lend me your ears! (teehee) I have thwarted commercialism by bucking the system.  How? I made my own camera bag! And it was easy!

Seven months ago, when my fellow photographer friend found out that I was getting a DSLR camera she sent me a nice little care package.   One of the things she sent was a camera bag.  Wasn't that thoughtful of her? I'm fortunate to have friends like that. :-) So, here I am, 7 months later and all my stuff lenses won't all fit  anymore. So, I began looking for a new bag.  That's when I found these cute little bags that look like purses.  Awesome! Right?!  Until I looked at the price!

$169  Kelly Moore bag

Not in my budget.   As luck would have it, I stumbled upon a blog that showed how to make your own stylish camera bag with a purse, a few materials and a little sewing. And that is what I set out to do.  Find out how to make yourself one here.

So my sister and I set out on a mission to find the perfect bag for my needs.  We found one at Burlington Coat Factory for $25 that was lightweight with enough room for my camera and a couple lenses. I wanted it to have a zipper top and some pockets.  Nothing really big.  I just wanted something that I could grab for a quick trip out, and not have to lug around my purse too. 

My $25 bag.

Then I rounded up my Joann's Fabric store coupons ( love that 50% off one item coupon) and went shopping for my supplies. I didn't do things exactly as my inspirational blogger did.  I chose to use a velcro called Fabric Fusion that adheres by ironing with steam.  I just wasn't up for the battle of sewing on velcro.    It seems to have worked rather well, too! All of my supplies came up to almost $30.  I have enough supplies left over to even make another camera bag. Woohoo! Maybe I will return that favor and send my friend one. :-)  Here is how my bag turned out.

I love the front pocket!

If I want more space I can move the inserts around. There is also a zipper pocket to put lens cleaner and extra memory cards in too. 

Dontcha know I was having so much fun that I couldn't stop at making just a camera bag! I had to have a matching camera strap and key chain too. None of the Kelly Moore bags have those!  Find out how to make a camera strap here.  And the key chain instructions are here.

I even put velcro on the back of my keychain. What fun!

Don't know how to sew? I seen a bag made by hot gluing the fabric to the foam. I'm not lying! It looked pretty good too.  See for yourself.Ya know, all this creativity got me to thinking... a person could make a camera bag out of other things too.  Maybe a diaper bag, or a fanny pack.  Or maybe even  a lunch box could be used.   But, I love my bag so much, I think I'm stopping here.  It's exactly what I wanted ---at my price.  -----Oh wait. I might add an extra pocket. Or maybe, make a bean bag for a tripod alternative. Hmmmm... it might get heavy though. OH... but wait, I could use my teenager's air rifle pellets! Okay.. so maybe this project isn't quite finished...YET. 

Here are some sites that sell camera bags that look like moneybags purses.

I love the Belle one on the Epiphanie site.  

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Nuts ARE Pretty

A month ago, I was digging around in my pantry and found a package of pecans.  They were in their original packaged, shoved into a click clack container.  Expiration date November 16, 2011. Ahhhh two months left to eat these nuts! So, I made my plea to everyone in the household to eat these nuts.  Did it happen?  No.

UNTIL.... I found this cute little glass pumpkin dish at Target yesterday.  It is now sitting on my table with pecans in it. And guess what? They are being eaten! So much better than candy.  Now I just need to come up with a bright idea to make carrots and celery pretty.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Frugal Decor

It's that time of year again, when my creative monster wants to come out and play. Where to start first? Well, a couple months ago we got a new dinette set.  I have been chomping at the bit to decorate it! Isn't it lucky? (teehee) The other day, I was in Sams Club and seen this beautiful centerpiece. (It was much more impressive to see in person)

But it was so expensive for what it was. Almost thirty five dollars!  That got me to thinking.  I can make my own table decor! As I began my search for the perfect items for my table, I seen so many possibilities. But, one particular blog really caught my eye.http://www.decorchick.com/dollar-store-hurricanes/  How to make your own hurricane glasses.   And here is what I came up with. 

Isn't it gorgeous?  Believe it or not, I bought the glassware at the Dollar Tree, WalMart and Goodwill. Yes, Goodwill!  I'm not kidding.  So, let me show you how I put this all together for dollars.

Sunday, September 18, 2011


Holy Cow! It's been almost a year since I blogged!

So, what have I been up to? Well, I chewed out a sales rep who called my house at 8:40 in the morning. I was still in bed.  It was not pretty.  I told her not to call my house again.  Do you know that lady called right back? So, I answered and gave her another piece of my mind and hung up on her again.  ANDDDD do you know that lady called back again??? And again, and again, and again.... She continued to call as I picked up and hung up on her.  Some people just aren't that smart. I'm just sayin'.