Monthly Archives: April 2013

04.30.13

If there is one thing that I am a complete sucker for it is cookies.

Maybe it is because I have never been a fan of pies & cakes, so cookies were my spoils of choice for things like birthdays.  Or maybe it is because there are almost endless flavors of cookies, and I like to try them all.  Or maybe they are just tasty and I have no willpower.

You know when cookies are the very best?  When they are delivered.
Know when they are better than that?  When they are free.

I am lucky enough to team up with some pretty sweet (pun totally intended) bloggers and Cookie Gift Baskets to bring you the most delicious giveaway you’ll find.

Cookie Gift Baskets is giving THREE winners their choice between these fancy cookie treats.  Yup, I’ll go ahead and say it…they are the icing on my cookie. all smiles cookie pot The All Smiles Cookie Pot features a dozen amazing cookies arranged into a colorful bouquet.  The best part is you get your choice of cookie flavors. happy faces cookie box gift box set The cheerful Happy Faces Cookie Gift Box is perfect to bring to work and sweeten up your boss. There is something for everyone in this variety pack. happy faces cookie pail How charming is the Happy Faces Cookie Pail.  It holds 8 of our cutout cookies that are decorated with bright yellow butter crème frosting and then dotted with eyes and a happy grin! smiley face planter My favorite is the Smiley Face Planter, since I am in backyard beautification mode.  And who doesn’t love a cute planter?  Especially when it feeds you sugar and then sprouts an herb mullet.

All I am saying is that my birthday is coming up, and I like this.

Now let’s get down to business….the cookie business.
Enter using this fancy Rafflecopter thing, super easy.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Giveaway sweepstakes is open to U.S. residents in the continental states (lower 48) and only to those 18 years old or older, sorry kids…maybe mom will share!

Winners will be chosen randomly. Three winners will receive their choice of one of the 4 designs shown.  Winners will be notified via e-mail so make sure you provide a valid email address. Winners must respond within three days of being contacted. If you do not respond within that period, another replacement winner will be chosen.

Giveaway ends at midnight EST on May 12, 2013.
The sweepstakes winners will be announced by May 19, 2013.

Written by Christina and Tim

04.29.13

Hi ho, hi ho…that weekend went by too fast, no?

We had a completely exhausting weekend full of trying to sell all our junk.
Who forgot to tell me how exhausting garage sales are?  It was fun, but it didn’t leave room for any crafty projects or bathroom remodeling time.

Now that all our leftovers are packed up in donation boxes, I have been thinking about more major donations. monday matter 17 Every day eighteen people die while waiting on a transplant.  That’s almost the whole Duggar family, insert sad face right here.  There are over 97,000 people in need of one or more organs right now and 300 new transplant candidates are added to that list every month.

When I was growing up I had a really close friend whose mom was in need of kidneys, we collected soda tabs to raise money and I said a prayer for her every night.  I often sit and imagine all those families and all those prayers that could be answered just by signing up to donate organs.

I have had the organ donor box checked on my license since I was sixteen, thanks in part to watching everything my friend had to go through.  There is no age limit on who can donate, and I always figure that there is no reason for two lives to be lost.  In fact your organs could save multiple lives…if that isn’t giving you a warm fuzzy feeling I don’t know what would.

Sometimes it is not enough to just check that box though, you should let your family know that you wish to donate your organs too.  Then there is no doubt should anything happen.

Are you an organ donor?
Know anyone that has received an organ donation?
How do you feel about those Duggars?

Written by Christina and Tim
04.26.13

Aye party people…oh wait we are grown ups…hello peers.

This week has been one full of ideas and excitement.  You ever have those moments when ideas are popping into your head faster than you can write them down?  Then you start thinking of fundraising ideas and ways to create a time machine.  No, just me?

  I find a constant theme in our lives is not having enough time and money to do everything we want.  Oh you can relate, yea I bet 99.9% of you can relate.  To the other .01% you should move in with us and teach us your ways, I will even call you a “guru” if you like.  Or at least teach a class, or loan out your time machine.

The real problem is that in two weeks all those ideas will be drying up like Jay Leno’s career (not a hater, I want to squeeze that big ol’ chin).  Hence, the writing down.  For now I am ignoring all my list making and soaking in all the inspiration you can find in the blogosphere with our Friday favorites.

I have been really falling hard for water-color paintings lately.  I wish I could make something like this. favorite etsy - lanas art Lana’s Art Gallery is an Etsy shop that is overflowing with color and sweet themes.  That bicycle gets me so ready for Spring to get its butt in gear and warm this town up.  I am beyond ready for lovely blooms and sunshine.  The itchy eyes, not so much. favorite - nation art Ever since I found sweet Beth of Sawdust & Embryos she has impressed the heck outta me with her furniture redesigns.  Now she has really gone and done it, she opened an Etsy shop.  My wallet should run for the hills.  The best part is, even though she is selling these awesome pieces of art she also shows you how to make it yourself.  I think I will skip the sliced fingers and misshapen nation and just put it on my wish list. favorite - scratcher Did you realize Mothers Day is basically right around the corner.  Oh yea, you better get your plan on.  If your mama is anything like my mom all she really wants is a neck rub, which is why this is a perfect gift.  Without all the birthday mambo jambo, you don’t want to confuse her. favorite - seaglass It should come as no surprise that a carousel that tricks you into thinking you are underwater riding on dolphins is basically our dream come true.  Any little girl who has watched Little Mermaid has to be down with this right?  Looks like a trip to Staten Island is in the works…or building a carousel. favorite - tealights While I was cleaning out all of our closets last weekend I came across a huge bag of tealights.  Tim won’t let me throw them out because apparently they are perfect for summer nights outside but I am trying to find a way to pretty the basic-ness up.  We always have tons of cans laying around so I think this needs to happen, immediately.  Maybe I can pump a couple out while I am hosting our very first garage sale tomorrow.

What are your weekend plans?
Have you tried out YHL’s forums yet?
Any garage sale tips for us novices?

Written by Christina and Tim
04.25.13

So you say you don’t like asparagus huh?

Well, you haven’t tried it with blue cheese.
Trust me on this okay.

When I joined our local fruit and veggie delivery service, they started throwing food at me that I had never heard of before.  Or maybe I had heard of it but refused to buy it, or eat it, or even smell it (lookin at you brussel sprouts).  So when I got a bundle of asparagus, I found a recipe where you stuffed asparagus and lots of cheese in some bacon.  Yea that is my kind of food.

Then I decided that I could leave off the bacon and call it delicious.

It is the easiest tasty thing you can make, I promise.
Here….I will prove it. easy asparagus step one Wash your asparagus, break off the ends, put them in a pan and drizzle olive oil over it.  I throw it in the oven at 400 degrees and set the timer for fifteen minutes. easy asparagus step two Once the fire alarm timer let’s me know what is up I just take a fork and gently roll the asparagus.  Channel your tanning bed days, you want to get a nice even glow.  I will tell you that sometimes at this point the olive oil is sizzling, so be very careful my friends.  Then spread some blue cheese crumbles on top and throw it back in the oven for about five minutes to get it all good and melty. easy asparagus step three Once the cheese is melty (totally official cooking term) take the pan out and let the sizzle stop.  Load it up on your fanciest paper plate and enjoy the semi-healthy goodness.  Don’t judge my paper plates, we were having steak and I can’t handle the knife-cutting screech.  Okay, okay, I just didn’t want to wash dishes.

Do you have any good veggie recipe?
Ever tried beets or brussel sprouts?  Those are next on our “to cook” list.
Are you a paper plate fanatic too?

Written by Christina and Tim
04.25.13

You know, the renovation we announced here and updated you on here.
Well, we have walls.  Yup, you heard it here first…actual walls.

Check out all the things we can cross off our list now. bathroom renovation we are getting there The electrical and plumbing is all finished thanks to Tim’s oh-so-handy stepdad.  We also have the bench built, a shower floor, and the drywall is up and at em.  I was upset about losing my foyer closet, but my excitement for steaming on the bench has quickly overshadowed that old closet.  Asti is pretty pumped too. bathroom renovation

Now we are getting to the really fun parts, but like everything fun in life…it is also the most expensive.  The tile I picked out originally was a white glass ceramic tile, but after reading several reviews about the difficulty of keeping everything straight while also going through a little sticker shock has us considering other options.  Like selling our first born.  Kidding…kind of.

Have you seen any amazing tile lately?
Want to know how hard it is to go from your own bathroom to sharing?
Been doing any fun renovations of your own?

Written by Christina and Tim

04.24.13

Bug Out...

Posted by Tim // 7 Replies

Don’t panic, there isn’t really a reason to Bug Out but we are going to talk about bugs today.  It’s inevitable that you will have to deal with pesky critters at some point in time.  As the temperature rises, so does the insect population.  I often feel like a warrior preparing for battle until I see that first mosquito or line of ants.   While insects do not scare me (unlike Christina) they can be quite bothersome.  We often have friends and family over to BBQ and hangout and cannot be surrounded by creepy crawlers all afternoon long.  I have put together a few tips to rid you and your home of these pests.

keep bugs away

This might be the most important one of them all.  Any food or water is an instant signal for insects to come and bother you.  If you are BBQing have foil on hand to cover any food items.  Spray off patios and decks and clean any tables or grills right after your guests leave.  Get a dog to scrounge up the crumbs (kidding, sort of) and try not to leave a sink full of dishes or cups of water hanging around.

I know you just got done partying like it was 1999 and the last thing you want to do is clean but it has to be done or you will wake up with insects taking over.

spray for bugs

Spray for bugs regularly.  There are some pretty inconspicuous insect repellents out there these days.  We use granular or spray treatments and have found both to be pretty effective.  Be sure to read all instructions especially for using products if you have kids or pets.  We like to spray inside and out a few times a year especially in the Spring.

bugs like leftovers

Pretty similar to the first one, but there are lots of things you can do to try and deter the insects.  Get a trashcan that seals in odors.  Keep counters wiped clean, foods sealed tightly, and the sink emptied of water. Clean and vacuum often and thoroughly.  If you have nothing inside your home that a bug will like then they won’t be there…it’s that simple.

keep the bugs out

Look for and identify any points of entry.  When we moved into our current home the previous owner had about 10 security cameras in place (paranoid much).  We removed every single one of them which left a nice hole in the siding.  We simply sealed them up with clear silicone…problem solved.  Look around doors, appliance entries, and windows especially.

I know most of these are common sense but a lot of folks don’t think about these things until it’s too late.  So what I am saying is bust the bug spray out this weekend and show those critters who is boss.

I hope these tips will help keep you insect free this summer!

Did you know Christina is terrified of worms?
How do you keep the bugs away?
Seriously, ask Christina about worms.

Written by Christina and Tim