Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Pintastic Discoveries

I have to say that I love my relationship with pinterest.  I have pinned a lot in my short pinning career, but I would not say that I was pin happy or pin crazy.  I don't pin a lot of the stuff I like because some of it I don't intend to use.  There are things I agree with, things I think are funny, cute animals, and so much more but my goal is really to use pinterest to house things that I actually want to do.  It is my way of goal setting.  So, thanks to pinterest, my 'to do' list is ginormous and it doesn't even include all the things that I actually have to do in my home.

I think I am actually off to a pretty good start!

There are only 4 pins in my money savings section and three of them are my own so of coarse I did them all.  The one I didn't author was a lot of fun...

The pin recommended using a ketchup bottle as a pancake pen.  Ketchup is not something that we use in our house so I was really excited that we had just finished a bottle of Mrs. Butter Worth's syrup.  I mean how perfect is that!  It was a lot of fun to feed these to my little girl and I was surprised at how easy it was.

First of all, K and I decided that we didn't want to dirty more dishes than we had to.  We thought we should make the pancake mix right inside of Mrs. Butter Worth and use her as a shake bottle.  We used another pin about making a funnel out of a water bottle to do this.  The bottle had a big enough mouth that no ingredients got stuck and we cut it long enough that we were able to dump all the ingredients into it without back-ups or clogs.  A quick rinse and now that gorgeous peace of reused plastic stays in our pancake batter jar.

The pin above came out of our Greener Living section.  We have done another pin from that section and are working on a couple more.  I feel so accomplished and well, GREENISH...
Feel free to click on some of the photos to go to the pins you like or follow the links to the pin boards to see if there are others you prefer to try.

Some of these pins give you the I-can't-believe-I-didn't-think-of-it-myself feeling, otherwise known as duh...  The chip clip.  You know how many of these hangers come into the house.  I should never need a chip clip again.  Cutting them took some time because I didn't have the right tool so I had to use a knife.   
I have a section called cool tips.  I have tried a few in there and have authored one from this blog.

The berry pin talked about a homemade fruit wash that was really great.  I have adopted this in my regular routine.  My berries stay firmer and last longer.  The inside of the berry stays new even when the outside starts looking less new.  It is great.  
The bathroom mirror should look familiar.  That is the one that came from this blog.  I have been able to get a lot more accomplished using this and the best part is that I wonderful love notes from my little girl :D!  
Now for the cheese.  I froze cheese and it worked very well.  I froze our Sargento provolone.  It is not regularly on sale and has very few coupons so the idea of being able to have a little stock pile now is very appealing. 
The apple thing.  I have some explaining to do.  I didn't have a rubber band.  I tried it without it and the apple still got brown but not soggy or dark brown.  On my second attempt, still without a rubber band, I put the apple in a small plastic container and it had even less browning so I am sure that if I ever run into a rubber band it could work.

The homemade food section has a ton of things that I want to do.  I have onlly done a couple of them so far but I have big plans.  :)  I started with the grapes.  That will need a 'do over'.  I kept them in a plastic baggie and the sour powder got all wet and gooey.  I thought it would be perfect for halloween.  I just need a good name for slimey limey green balls.  Maybe ogre eyes or something?  Any suggestions?  
The oven corn was delicious and simple.  It was great not to have to fuss with the boiling of water.  It is also easy to make in mass quantities this way.

There are a few more pins that I have been able to try but this blog is already long enough.  I feel like I should get a badge like in the girl scouts or a belt like in wrestling.  I would love to hear about what you have tried from your pinterest account.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Poop on my shoe!

Thats right!  I have poop on my shoe and I feel very accomplished.  I am on, what seems to be the long road to a simpler life.  The yard needed attention and I didn't want to keep paying someone else to do it.  I also was not at all attracted to those big, bulky lawn mowers with their pull strings and thirst for gas.  I really wanted to try a reel mower.  I have wanted it for a while.  I remember talking to my late husband about it.  He thought I was crazy.  He was never interested in mowing.  :D

Being raised a city girl, I can't say that all the yard work is thrilling to me.  I mean, I fantasize about growing food and flowers, but at this point, I would be lucky to successfully grow grass.  I had many reasons for wanting a reel mower.  Maybe you can relate to some of these...

1.  If I had a gas mower, everything would be fine.  It would take less time and cut everything in its path.  Everything would flow until it was out of gas.  Then, I would procrastinate.  It is something that I am really good at doing.  I would forget to buy gas about a thousand times, since I am really forgetful by nature.  I promise, I don't do it on purpose.  The need for gas would give me another reason to roll my eyes at gas prices.  

2. Then there are the mechanical issues.  I am not mechanically inclined and I am on a budget.  I am not the most trusting person when it comes to mechanics of any kind.  I know, stereo typing is wrong but I completely buy into the whole careless, overpriced mechanic conspiracies.

3. My carbon foot print!  The reel mowers have no engine.  They run on the greenest energy available. They run on ME ENERGY!  Really, what is the point of being young and energetic (sometimes) with no outlet?  I don't have to pay for a gym membership.  I don't have many opportunities to get good and smelly.  It's exciting.  I don't need to have a clear side walk or path to walk.  I need to get my bum outside and mow the yard.  I like feeling just a little greener.  I am not super green but everyone loves a little sage.

4.  Thanks to you tube, the maintenance for a reel mower is simple.  I watched exactly what to do and how to do it.  Bonus, I only have to do it once a year.

3.  The reel mowers are cheaper than mechanical lawn mower.  They start at about $30 less than the cheapest engine mowers.  Add to your savings the fact that you do not need to buy gas and will only need a little oil for maintenance and you are saving tons.  The sharpening kit for the reel mower is only about $15- $20 and lasts for years.  I got a bonus deal.  I found mine on craigslist and paid half of what it sells for!  :D

There are cons to everything but they really don't apply to me.  Just for the sake of making this piece slightly less biased I will share some with you.  If you are a lawn guru, the reel mower may not be for you.  The reel does not get to everything in its path.  Uneven ground can equal uneven cuts.  If you do not want to pull weeds, the reel mower may not be for you.  It won't cut every weed out there.  Some weeds won't cut at all (the little white flowers proved this for me).  You have to pull them.  If you do not want to mow too often, the reel mower may not be for you.  Letting the grass grow in too long will beat up any push mower, but the reel will not be able to cut thru thick high grass.  It will take a long time since you will have to do it in stages.  For me, it is ideal.  You will have to see if it fits for your needs.  

Now for some comedic relief.  I was doing so well but there was absolutely no way that I was going to be able to get thru the entire yard without steeping is some dog poop.  I mean the odds are completely against me with 5 dogs.  Here are the suspects... 
The sweet looking bad girl - Mincha
The quiet one - Rusty
The oldest - Copey
The monster - Tobey (Mincha's Boyfriend)
The sweet rescue - Lucky

What do you guys think??? 

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Teacher Appreciation!

My daughter loves giving her teacher gifts and I love keeping them inexpensive enough to do them whenever she wants!  This coming monday starts teacher appreciation week!  I have had the gifts done for a while but I didn't want to post it yet.  I wanted to wait until this week.

I didn't want any lurking teachers to get a sneak peak and I know right now is their 'no computer' time.

We got our eye on you!  Ha!

I know a lot of teacher gifts involve supplies.  There are so many wonderful ideas out there but I didn't want to give them more supplies.  They have a lot of it and the school year is almost over. I want to show appreciation by getting them something for their personal use.  Recently, we got these double walled, bpa free drink cups in different patterns.  K and I love them!  We use them every day.  We decided that these would be our perfect gifts this year.  They hold ice for hours and they don't sweat.  That means no mess on the teachers desk!  That is REFRESHING!  We put some Crystal Light drink paks in the cups with Emergen C and some hershey nuggets candies and we were done.  We attached personalized post cards with a picture on it and a little flower lollipop in the straw.  These gifts are intended to stay in between $5 - $10 although it cost us even less because I had all the goodies at home all ready.  I only spent about $4 each on the cup.

My modo for gift giving is to make sure it is useful.  If you use it regularly and it doesn't end up in a closet or on a shelf, I am excited!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Olive oil for swimsuit season!

Spring is great!  It's the ultimate prep time for swimsuit season.  We use it to start building all of our summer dreams and pick up all of our summer gear including swimsuits.  With all the short skirts, shorts, and swimsuits comes hair removal.  Nobody's favorite part.  For those of us who are honest and open with the girl code, we know that the razors don't get used as much in the winter unless we are prepping for something in particular or are going thru a hoochie stage.  You know, hoochie stages and new relationship/ new husband stages are when all your underwear matches and you have to be ready for any chance encounters after that everything is pretty much scheduled or can be put off for ten extra minutes while you 'get ready'.  Since most winter activities don't involve the potential risk of jumping into salt water, most of the time we can handle the 'hair care' the same day we need to show a hairless leg off.  Now it is spring.  It is time to try to get our skin used to waxings and constant shavings again.  Many areas are easy.  They adapt quickly.  No major issues.  Then there is the bikini line.  What a pain in the tukish!  It needs constant attention and is super sensitive for some which makes underwear a nightmare.  Lucky us, I know...

So here is a cheap, natural tip for minimizing discomfort and redness in any area that gets a little rashy for any reason.  Some mothers already use it for diaper rashes and chances are you already have it in your home.  You ready for it?...


This stuff just keeps getting better and better doesn't it.  All you need is a dab.  Use it the way you would a lotion, rub it in.  You can use it in the days following a shave or wax or opt for the daily regimen which will not only treat the skin but also condition the hair.  Regular use has helped with the future maintenance for some women.  You will have to let me know if it has that affect on you ladies/gents.  I would really love to hear your comments on this one.  

Until next time, Keep it smooth and comfy :)