christmas crafts – easy and way out!

So I love Christmas, but this year has been different for me. I felt that I needed to start my Christmas present shopping/making early (like this summer)… how grateful that I followed that inspiration since I then got sick! Thus, I haven’t been able to do do very many Christmassy things that I normally look forward to. So I am showing one that I think I will (or could) do and ones that I would in another stage of life :)

The first is what I will do with my tens of thousands of stray magazines in my house!

Melanie from My Craft Projects shows how to make these:

I like her idea of spray painting them… I was thinking a light coating of gold would be fun and festive. This I could definitely do whilst sitting on the couch.

Next is from one of my favorite inspirational blogs Sewing in No Mans Land. I just love how chic and classy all Kelly’s ideas are… and her Evie is just to die for!

Anyway, she is doing crafts for the 12 days of Christmas- I so think she is truly inspired in her creative side. No tole painting here :)

Here is her Three French Hen’s idea--- she went with the French

Here is her Four Calling Birds and her Evie!

I will definitely be paying attention to her next days of Christmas!


sign of a good cook

I can sure tell that I am feeling better and getting out of my first trimester, and this is why. In all my education at BYU they tell you that being an efficient and good cook is based on other things besides cooking the actual food.

Some of those things are:

  • planning your meal out and making time plans in advance
  • getting out all the ingredients out before you start cooking
  • washing your dishes as you go through your preparation
  • not serving your meals out of the pans you have cooked in

I actually had the energy to do this yesterday… and the day before yesterday, in fact. I have been able to plan out the meals instead of waiting for my hubby to get home and then pilfering our empty fridge (trying not to purchase groceries before our vacation to Colorado) for the dinner supplies. I also have FINALLY been able to keep up with my dishes. We don’t have a dishwasher and it showed for the past three months… but it seems she is back in working order - wish I was paid for that job :)

Do you do these things? When you feel nasty or tired, what is the first thing that drops off your list? Mine?--- not serving out of the pans I cook in!

Here’s to good cooking!!!


product reviews

This week I have tried a whole bunch of new beauty products. We are on a strict budget around here, so I couldn’t just go out and purchase what I normally use on my hair and face. I hope that this may help some of you stay in your budget! :)

L’Oreal Studio Secrets Magic Perfecting Base

First of all, my acne is in full force because I am expecting. It is tough. I really needed something that could help prep my skin so that my makeup stays on longer and so that my face looks smoother. I found, through the Allure Beauty Report that this had great ratings-

My review- I give this primer 4 out of 5 stars. I could not believe how much I loved this. It is $10.97 at Wal-mart and I have a $2.00 coupon. The jar is small (a downside), but I just used it under my eyes, on my nose and chin. It felt so silky on my bumpy skin and I felt that my makeup looked more flawless than ever before… and lasted all day.

John Frieda Frizz ease Serum

When I do my hair naturally curly or blow it out with a round brush, I get fly-aways ALL OVER my head! I feel like just a fuzz ball. Normally I use Matrix sleek look products to solve this. That product gets a 5 out of 5 star rating from me. Just amazing. But not in my budget… and I out! So I perused the hair care aisle and found the John Frieda line.

My review- I give this about a 3.5 star rating. It works, but not all day. It is a great value for your dollar and that is important. It is $7.97 at Wal-Mart. I have been really happy about it. I have used it on my hair wet and then pulled it back into a wet ponytail and I felt that it did help with the frizz control on my ends as my hair dried. If you use too much, it is really oily! There is a fine line between too much and just enough. Overall, I prefer the Matrix so much better.

Pantene Pro V Curly Hair Product Line

I have natural curly hair. Normally, I will throw tons of gel and cheap hairspray to get my curls to set right. It makes the frizz gross and the curls stiff. I wanted more of a natural look with movement. So I pulled out my Pantene Card. Normally, again, I use the Matrix line and swear by it, but my budget couldn’t do that. So what is next… Pantene Pro V products. I love Pantene. It works for my hair and it about the cheapest I can go on hair care products. I definitely find that for hair care products, cheaper means cheaper and not great quality.

I purchased the Mousse, leave in conditioner, and the hair spray from their Curly line.


My Review- Mousse- 4 out of 5 stars. This mousse is so nice! I love that it isn’t sticky and I felt that it really helped my curls. Leave in Conditioner- 5 out of 5 stars. I love the leave in conditioner! It is a great way to boost the moisture and care for my hair since I have to use lots of heat to get it to style. I will even use it when I do my hair straight. 4 out of 5 for the hairspray. It really helped get some of my curls to set well and still allowed for some great flexibility in my curls. I like that it wasn’t sticky. The downside is that it didn’t seem to last all day. The conditioner is 3.97, the mousse 3.97, and the hairspray 3.96… plus I had coupons for them.

Tresseme Heat Tamer

Like I said, I pretty much fry my hair on a daily basis. I noticed that since I have been pregnant, my hair is much drier and more brittle. My ends are not lasting the normal amount of time between cuts. So again, I checked out the Allure Beauty Report and found this one on the budget list of good products.

My Review- I give this a good 4.5 out of 5 stars. The only reason I do not like this is that the bottle and nozzle are really hard to figure out how to comfortable hold them. I loved that it didn’t make my hair starchy like some other heat protectants do. It helped me straighten my hair faster and it is much smoother. Love it! This was $3.84 at Wal-Mart

L'Oreal True Match Blendable Powder

I love to skip foundation. When I have acne like this, foundation just makes me feel like I get a really uneven coverage. I even use some great Clinique products for foundation. For me, I am just looking for even color tones. Normally I use Clinique’s Stay Matte Pressed Powder. I have tried all of their pressed powders and I have loved each one if I remember right. But for every beauty and make-up product that I needed this time around, I decided to find something that would work in place of this for the time being. So I chose the L’Oreal True Match Blendable Powder.


My Review- I give this 5 out of 5 stars! This stuff is perfect! For $8.97 (over half as much as Clinique) I have been able to get great coverage and in a PERFECT color! Usually when my face is acne free, I feel like powder helps control the shine and days that I need more coverage, I use foundation. However, this has such great coverage that I feel like I can skip foundation. Awesome product!


I have many more… my list was long and I was out of a lot of stuff, but I haven’t gotten to everything yet. I hope this may help you. Lastly, I wanted to ask…what are your favorite products and why?


simple, luxurious christmas gifts

These sugar scrubs are so easy to make and are wonderful! I tried mine out today and it was so nice. I got out of the shower and didn’t have to put moisturizer on my legs and arms because this helped lock in moisture so much! They would be so cute in a set with a CD of your favorite relaxation songs and a small candle. Perfect, easy, much appreciated gift! And cost friendly too! I bet you have most of the supplies already! Plus there are so many ways to change it up- add processed oatmeal, other spices, use raw sugar… they are FAIL PROOF!

White Glimmer Sugar Scrub

1 cup - Pure Cane Sugar
4-6 oz - olive oil
4 drops - essential oil (I love using orange and vanilla)
1 8oz. - glass container with lid
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl until well blended. Using a spatula, transfer mix into the container and secure lid. Contents will settle, mix before using. Scoop a teaspoon or two of the scrub on your hands and gently massage in circular motions onto your skin. Leave on for 3 to 4 minutes before thoroughly rinsing. The scrub will tighten on your skin.

Warm Brown Sugar Scrub

1/2 cup - Dark or Light Brown Sugar
1/2 cup - Pure Cane Sugar
¾ cup - olive oil
2 tsp. - cinnamon, powdered
1 8oz. - glass container with lid
4-5 drops - essential oils
In a medium-sized bowl, combine all ingredients until thoroughly blended. Be sure to break up any lumps from the brown sugar or from the spices. Spoon into the glass container and secure with lid. Scoop a teaspoon or two of the scrub on your hands and gently massage in circular motions onto your skin. Leave on for 3 to 4 minutes before thoroughly rinsing. The scrub will tighten on your skin. 


carl bloch- the master’s hand

Right now at the BYU Museum of Art paintings of Carl Bloch are on display. This is such a rare opportunity to have these amazing and glorious pieces of art all together. Last night, my family went to the exhibit and was touched at the power of the paint and talent in which they were rendered.

You can go here to the BYU Museum of Art website to read more, see some of the paintings, AND get tickets to go see the exhibit. Whether you are LDS or not, one cannot discount the spirit of these paintings. An added BONUS is that you can rent an iPad that will take you through the exhibit and go into further detail about the artist.

How blessed and strengthened I feel because of this man. I am definitely going back again… maybe I can soak up some more insight into who my Savior is and what He has offered to me.

On display until May 7, 2011


my christmas wish list

Usually I have my list done and am stalking people for their list. But this year, I am the one behind. Then things are simple this year. I am noticing that I feel that as long as my family is taken care of, I am happy. (oo… sounding like my mom… but I FINALLY understand what she felt!) Here are some of the things on my list…

Cute headbands and hair clips from Forever 21

- Frilly, feathery, beaded, rhinestoned- the more outrageous you think they are for you, the better for me


Simplified Hymn Book


Cheetos that are just for me (um Prego craving?)

Remote for my camera


Brother Innov-is 40 Sewing machine (around $400 new)


this thing has AMAZING ratings on consumer reports


- Chunky, sparkly, fun, big

Some other things that would be nice- a massage, some really nice makeup to cover my prego acne laden face, my hair to be fixed (another story), laser hair removal, my bedding to be finished, a vacation, energy, and patience.

What is on your list? Maybe you could spark my mind of something that I would love to have-

woot off

For those who haven’t ventured to these websites… today is the day for you!

Usually there is only one deal a day but today is a woot off! This means that they will continue to post products until it is gone and then post a new one. The kids.woot has some GREAT Christmas gift ideas. You just have to keep checking back! Be quick too about purchasing!







it’s fancy nancy

so A and her cousin are both close to two and a half… and completely obsessed with Fancy Nancy (or Fancy Fancy as A call her).


I saw this idea this morning and just had to share it with you… go over to Make it and Love it here to check out the whole idea! It is something that anyone could do for their girl.


spilled beans

So a couple of weeks ago, I mentioned how neglected this blog was becoming and why. What I didn’t mention is that there is also a baby on the way! I have felt just wiped out, but now I am starting to get some energy again. It felt like it would never come back to feeling any better.

Due in June!


on the menu – peanut butter pie

something started a tradition of love in my family with this pie! We have it all the time. It is so easy and just silky, nutty goodness. It takes only ounces of time and always turns out beautifully! This is a great recipe to include your little ones with and is fun to change up. See below for some ideas on this-



  • 1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust
  • 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 3-4 big peanut butter cups, unwrapped and chopped up
  1. Mix the cream cheese, confectioners' sugar and peanut butter together until smooth. Fold in 1/2 of the whipped topping. Spoon the mixture into the graham cracker crust.
  2. Place the remaining whipped topping over the top of the peanut butter mixture and garnish with the peanut butter cups. Chill for at least 2 hours or overnight before serving.

Ideas to change things up

- using caramel and chocolate sauce on top

- using a Oreo crust

- using a Butterfinger crunched in the PB mixture and then on top

- making fun designs with the chocolate



Okay, I am totally obsessed with this dessert cafe.

The Chocolate

the chocolate bakery jonathan canlas orem utah oem

I took my mom there while she was in town last week. She had a piece of the dark chocolate and I had a piece of the vanilla (what I get every time). When I want something sweet, this is where I go. Lucky for me, it is just down the street and around the corner. You can check out their website here.


financial food for thought no.4


Grocery shopping helps

Did you know the average American spends $5.00 for every minute they are in a grocery store? Did you know that 2 out of 3 items in your cart are impulse buys?


I watched a movie in my cooking class a while back that really inspired me to not go to the grocery store hungry!… and with kids. It made me sick thinking that I spent that much on things that we really could do without. So I am trying to do things differently now. Here are some tips that I gleaned from the class

  • Make a weekly shopping plan- take ONLY the amount of money you will spend on one week’s worth
  • Check newspaper ads – buy staple items on sale and stock up
  • check your inventory- LOOK in your fridge before you go to the store. I cannot tell you how many times I have come home and realized I already had what I bought.
  • Kids- shop when they are rested, when the store is less crowded, let them add one item to the cart – in my opinion, don’t go with your child if you can manage it. You need to pay attention to prices and labels. You can’t do that AND keep a kid in the cart (or 2 for that matter).
  • Coupons- use the for food WHEN the price is right
  • Know the store layout – it will help you make your list in order that you go through the store. this  will save you time and money
  • Be aware of marketing techniques- end of aisle displays aren’t always good deals
  • Limit convenience foods- they are ALWAYS higher prices
  • Read the labels
  • Ingredients- are always listed largest quantity to smallest… watch that sugar!
  • Check dates for freshness- you don’t even want to know about expired meat being repackaged! YUCK!
  • Eat meat less often- use beans and lentils if you can
  • Choose brown or enriched rice… they are healthier for you
  • Plan meals around specials
  • Make a LIST!!!
  • Know your prices- why you shouldn’t take your kids shopping
  • Be sure to check the scanner for pricing errors – check your receipts before you leave the store
  • Use unit pricing
  • Try store brands – they may taste better than you expect
  • Buy fruit and veggies in season
  • Start a garden at home

Hope these tips help you in your next shopping experience!!!


on the menu – pumpkin butter

I attended  a fun class on pumpkin butter the other night. Sadly, due to botulism, it is not something you can make and then can it, but you are allowed to freeze it! This recipe is a great way to use those uncarved pumpkins on your doorstep!


  • 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin puree or 4 cups of freshly baked, pureed pumpkin
  • 3/4 cup apple juice
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 1/2 cups white sugar
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  1. Combine pumpkin, apple juice, spices, and sugar in a large saucepan; stir well. Bring mixture to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 30 minutes or until thickened. Stir frequently.
  2. Transfer to sterile containers and chill in the refrigerator until serving.



well, if I haven’t neglected this blog for a while! Things just kind of picked up in my family where priorities changed. They still are changed… we are just trying to make it through some schooling for my hubby, finding a master’s program for him, and finding a job for him too, company at our house, and then my little A was in the urgent care yesterday again! That leads me to take care of lots of extras and it has worn me out! So you will just have to forgive if I am not as constant as I would like to be with this blog right now.


reshape your plate series – part 5 – meal


So here we are with some good education about the Plate Method now in our minds, but now to conquer it in our lives!


When we meal plan, things can get pretty complicated! How do we ever stay in budget (a leader for a new series coming soon), stay in the pyramid guides and make things our families like? The Plate Method is here to make some of these things easy for us.




This is how you can do things really simply-

Make a menu on a sheet of paper for a week with BLD on three separate lines underneath the day. Then I go through and pick one from each category using my placemat. For example for Breakfast on Monday, I would choose

  • 1/2 c. strawberries
  • 1 c. tomato juice
  • 2 slices of whole wheat bread
  • 2 scrambled eggs
  • 3/4 c. yogurt

That’s it! Then once your menu is filled for the week, you need to add up how much you need to buy of each item. (Are you thinking a spreadsheet?!?!) I think SO! I would throw this all into one in an instant. Anyway, so if I had yogurt for three mornings, I would need (3/4+3/4+3/4)= 2 1/4 cups yogurt.

Then, I need to multiply that by how many people would be eating that meal (my husband and I and A, but for right now, let’s just say my hubby and myself). That would be (2 1/4 * 2) = 4 1/2 cups of yogurt for the week. This is for teens and adults. If I was feeding my teenage brother, we would have to count his eating as 2 people’s servings (he is an athlete to the highest degree).

Now, for children and toddlers. A good rule of thumb is about three quarters to half of what you eat per day. So that would just make my family’s multiplier 2.5 (1- hubby, 1-me, 1/2-A).

This also makes planning meals for company really easy! Just multiply!

Here are some other helps. I am seeing if I can get some better copies of these for you to link to and print out-


Here are some helps for planning your menu- make sure that you are keeping things LOW fat! Cooking your veggies in bacon fat is not allowed :)


So we have come to the end of this series- I hope you have learned some. I find this information most useful when I am eating out. But it truly is good for anywhere. If you are served at a friend’s home and the meat is 3/4 the plate, just eat a 1/4 and then get some more salad to cover the other 2 quarters :)

The last things

  • as you try this, I think you will be amazed at how much food this really is! Most nights we cannot eat all on our plates! It goes into a Gladware container for a snack another time.
  • It is hard to shop for more than a week in advance because you are eating a lot of produce – and it may spoil.
  • During the winter it can be hard to get fresh fruits and veggie – and expensive. So there are other ways you can get these – freeze or can some from summer, pre-canned, frozen, buying in season, and watching for sales can help.
  • DON’T give up! It can be frustrating to get it all down and get the hang of it. I find that I like to make recipes that use items from multiple groups. In cases like this, I just try to imagine the ratio of uncooked items on a plate and figure how much would be a serving in the dish. For example, a chicken pot pie has chicken, veggies, milk, and some bread. I wouldn’t count the bread really. In the recipe I might double the veggies to get a good ratio and then for how many people I am multiplying with, just make that much meat servings in the whole dish.

We are so lucky to have the ability to create our own meals! We can change recipes and make them healthier, we can make things within our budget, and we can make them taste better! How blessed we are! And how blessed we are to have enlightened people to think of and produce guidelines that help us be healthy. Props to them!

Here’s to Reshaping Our Plates!



I just finished reading these two books:



Both books were wonderful in their own ways. However, I think I am partial to the humor and characters found in Emma. Now to watch the movies… again.

What are some good books you have read? I need a new one!


on the menu

This is what we are making today with the abundant produce from Saturday. I don’t know which I am more excited for… the actual butter, or my wonderful smelling house! In the meantime, I will be babysitting a load of kids and trying to clean my crazy house to make it look as good as it will smell. Happy Monday!

Honey-Apple Butter

  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 2 pounds apples - peeled, cored and chopped
  • 1/3 cup honey
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground salt


  1. Place the apples in a slow cooker. In a medium bowl, mix the honey, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Pour the mixture over the apples in the slow cooker and mix well.
  2. Cover and cook on high 1 hour.
  3. Reduce heat to low and cook 9 to 11 hours, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is thickened and dark brown.
  4. Uncover and continue cooking on low 2 hours. Stir with a whisk, if desired, to increase smoothness.
  5. Spoon the mixture into sterile containers, cover and refrigerate or freeze.


    bountiful baskets

    My mom introduced me to bountiful baskets this past week. I tried it and it is the BEST thing I have ever done!!!

    Bountiful Baskets is a co-op that a whole bunch of people pool their money to get a great deal on produce. It is 15.00 for a LARGE bundle of food – 50% veggies and 50% fruit – or 6 fruits and 6 veggies. This is a volunteer organization so on your first time you pay a 3.00 fee on top of the cost of food, to have them purchase you a basket to sort the produce. I was a little skeptical about this, but I am so overjoyed at the results!


    For $15.00 I got around:

    • 10 pears
    • 10 apples
    • 2 lbs grapes
    • pineapple
    • blackberries
    • 10 bananas
    • head of romaine lettuce
    • 5 tomatoes
    • bag of fresh green beans
    • 12 sweet potatoes
    • 2 cucumbers
    • 1 yellow squash


    Amazing huh? It is almost enough produce to last us 2 weeks and I usually spend $25.00 on produce every 2 weeks. Everything is fresh and healthy.


    They have places in Colorado, Oregon, Idaho, Utah, Montana, Washington, Wyoming, Nevada, Arizona & Texas that do this. Their website is kind of hard to understand, but this is what you will do:

    • Go on to their site at bountifulbaskets.org
    • You can click on Locations to see if one is offered close to you
    • You can click on Current Offerings to see what they are offering for the week
      • I love the idea of bread baskets and Mexican baskets that offer tomatoes, chilies, onions and such.
      • Today they don’t have any offerings because they had one this morning. I would check back next Monday. That is about when I did mine.
    • When there is an offering you just make an account and purchase. Then when you go, make sure you take your own box/laundry basket to bring your food home in.


    reshape your plate – part 4 – choosing foods


    Have you been applying this yet? I want to hear your thoughts as you learn and try new things. I know that I have a lot to learn with all this still, so please share!

    Here are the other parts of my reshape your plate series if you are interested in catching up! All parts here.

    To review the three layers

    1. Reshape your plate
    2. Serving sizes
    3. Food choices

    I have talked about the first two, but now we are on the third! Food Choices!

    What constitutes a good food choice?

    Here is The Plate Method with food choices added on top of the colors and portion sizes.


    I really don’t feel like I need to say more on this. It is pretty self-explanatory. But I will give some overview

    The food groups for your plate are

    • 1/2 plate veggies (1/4 should be dark greens or oranges and the other 1/4 another veggie)
    • 1/4 plate grains and/or starches (potatoes, corn, peas, and lima beans are considered starches – so those don’t count as veggies
    • 1/4 plate meat and beans – I talked a little last time about portion sizes for your meat. I like that this diagram has lean, very lean, and dry beans and peas sectioned out. This becomes helpful in planning meals.

    Which is for next week! Are you finally ready to get into some application of this!?! YES!


    heaven in a jar

    I saw this cute idea and had to make one of my own. I know that pie in a jar is really popular, but cake?… it is WAY easy! Just take an 8 oz canning jar, shove a cupcake (baked without papers) in the bottom, layer with frosting, another cupcake and more frosting. I put some sprinkles in for a surprise on top. A note, ribbon, and a spoon top it all off! These are SO easy and just look so creative. These make great gifts! Just try not to lick your fingers!


    halloween lanterns

    I saw this somewhere online and I thought, now that is something that I can do and that I would like. Carving pumpkins just isn’t my thing. Just mod podge, tissue paper, construction paper, a tea light candle and some jars will get you this look. I am really excited to set these out on Saturday. I like that I can also pull them inside for a fun dinner on Sunday! I was thinking how fun it would be to make these and put some candy or ingredients to make cookies in them to give to friends.




    finance food for thought no.3


    Buying the bigger size isn’t always cheaper

    I just got a Costco card today. We used to have one in NY, but in NY we would travel over an hour to go grocery shopping. Buying big sizes helped a lot. However!!!

    I priced almost every item on my HUGE grocery list (Confession: I haven’t been grocery shopping in over a month). It took a long time, but I am so grateful that I did. Maybe you can glean some info from this too-

    Cheaper Items

    • Olive oil per ounce
    • Only some cereals! You need to price out per ounce on those. I bought Frosted Mini wheat, but that was it
    • Multi Vitamins
    • Milk – My Skim milk was as cheap as the grocery store, but whole milk was more expensive
    • Bulk candies

    More Expensive Items – just to give you an idea

    • Eggs
    • Some granola bars
    • Toothpaste
    • Diapers (wal-mart’s and target’s generic brands beat out by almost .06 a diaper!)

    I didn’t price out any produce because I purchase mine at Sunflower Farmer’s Market. They are a company that specializes in health foods and produce. Most of the time they are the cheapest. I like supporting them.

    Sometimes it just isn’t logical for you to buy in bulk! We get sick of the same granola bars for a month! We also don’t need a 48 ox can of evaporated milk when in my life I have never used it in a recipe until today and probably won’t use it again. Plus, spending $200 just might not fit in your budget for the month. In this case you don’t want to only get 1/3 of the groceries you need.

    The last thing that is actually a positive about these warehouses are that you can order online and then just go pick up what you need. It can save so much time AND no impulse buys!!! When we were in NY I would order online about two days before I went down and then all I had to do was pay and take it out to my car. It really helped when I was pregnant too!

    Overall, I love shopping at wholesale warehouses! It is really fun! I love looking at books, home goods, and clothes. They have great samples ;) too. Just be careful!

    Next is in the grocery store! I was at Winco a couple of weeks ago and I needed tinfoil. I went to grab the bigger size, but I looked and the smaller size was cheaper per foot! This happens to me all the time. It really pays to keep a calculator in your purse. You will know me in the grocery store because I always have my handy-dandy calculator out crunching numbers. Sometimes stores are awesome because they have the price per ounce or pound already calculated for you! Just watch sale tags, they usually need recalculated.

    Buying the bigger size isn’t always cheaper


    naked no more!

    I made some wonderful progress today with my bedroom. Here is a before picture of it that I will constantly refer to in my bedroom remake endeavors. I don’t know how this room could get any worse! Well, take away my mattress pad heater and I will be in despair (and a really bad mood).


    It was so depressing, I hardly ever made the bed. For months I have been craving a complete bedding set and it had to be something that sang. You know how that goes. Anyway, I looked for months and never found anything until last weekend, by chance. After about 14 hours of sewing I have the duvet cover, 2 euro shams, and 2 standard shams done. I still have some decorative pillow to do. Then I will be on to that pathetic dresser in the corner and the blank wall above the bed which will give me my own heaven.


    Here is the painting that is inspiring my color pallet. I think that I want to try throwing some light blue in for an accent color. What do you think? I am just so excited to finally be able to sleep!


    Here are some tips that I did with this bedding set…

    Our comforter fill always falls to the outside of out bed. Then it goes from warm to freezing cold in about a week. I will pull out the comforter and shake all the fill back into the middle, but it was always temporary. So this time, I shook everything into the middle and then sewed a big square about a foot from the outside on the duvet. No more sneaking away feathers!!!


    The other trick that my mom taught me has really helped! You sew ribbon on all four corners of your duvet and the inside corners of the covers. Then when you put the duvet in the cover, tie the ribbons together from one corner to the matching corner in the cover. Then the comforter won’t slip around. Brilliant!!!



    today… starting with yesterday

    Today was a rough day.

    This rough started with my day yesterday. I planned too much for the day.

    I had in my head that I would complete a whole bedding set, pillows and all. I would prepare two lessons for church, make cupcakes, cuts A’s hair, vacuum, and fold my laundry.

    Not one thing was completely finished besides my lessons, and those weren’t spot on.

    A and I went out early in the morning to run our errands to get the finishing touches for my project so I could start sewing. I started sewing at 11:30 am… when 7:30 pm rolled around and I wasn’t even done with the duvet cover, my emotions plummeted low.

    How could I have not finished everything I set out for doing? 

    I took a time out on my bedding-less bed trying to analyze what went wrong, while all along knowing that I knew this would happen before the day even began. I planned too much.

    With much gratitude, my husband and girl came to cheer me up and help me get back to work again. They vacuumed, picked up toys, and then he took A out to some friends so I could have time to do my lessons. The night finished fairly well with no trailing emotions… or so I thought.

    This morning was like someone opened the flood gates to my emotions. I was crying about everything, starting with the rain outside. My mood was as dismal as the rain. I didn’t feel the comfort of the Holy Ghost in letting me know that the lessons I needed to teach would be what someone needed to hear. I was aware of everyone – like they could see through my facade and see that I was having a hard morning. In sacrament meeting, it seemed like all I did was tell A to sit down, get off the floor, or turn around. I struggled through my lesson (and thankfully, didn’t have to teach the other one in the end) and seemed to notice just how many of the sisters weren’t paying attention. I just felt like a complete failure.

    I came home from church, undressed and climbed into bed. I laid there for some time pondering on the events of the past two days. Then I was sparked by President Uchtdorfs talk from Conference about slowing down. I felt the sudden comfort from the spirit that I needed to read that talk again, that I planned too much, that it wears on my family when I do, that I need to do better at balancing my time.

    I love this quote from President Uchtdorf’s talk :

    My dear brothers and sisters, we would do well to slow down a little, proceed at the optimum speed for our circumstances, focus on the significant, lift up our eyes, and truly see the things that matter most. Let us be mindful of the foundational precepts our Heavenly Father has given to His children that will establish the basis of a rich and fruitful mortal life with promises of eternal happiness. They will teach us to do “all these things . . . in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that [we] should run faster than [we have] strength. [But] it is expedient that [we] should be diligent, [and] thereby . . . win the prize.”

    I changed pace for the rest of today. I have slowed down and hid my to do list for tonight. My dishes aren’t done, my house is kind of disheveled, but my family is happy and I feel so much better. I understand what the prize is now and tonight, I obtained it.


    friday feature favs!

    I am finally back from my parent’s house in Colorado. We had such a wonderful time, but here we are back to the swing of things. Well trying. For some reason, it has been terribly hard to kick it into gear today. I would like to blame it on the cold weather, but I do feel overwhelmed at all I need to do.

    Anyway, so for the post today, I am featuring other blogs that I have stumbled upon today… wonderful talented people!

    First is this creepy, crawly dish from Be Different… Act Normal

    Also on this site is a great idea to mix things up in your kitchen with this – It makes me wish I had a kitchen aid to do it with. I am wondering how I could do it with my plain Bosch mixer.

    Next is the cutest dessert truck table on Amy Atlas designs. Check out the sugared pears and the cute fabric strip chandelier.

    Then last, but not least is the find of the week! It is a site called Made by Joel that I have fallen head over heels for! His stuff is so simple, chic, and just well done. Check out this cute Dancing Deer idea – This would be such a great idea for an afternoon activity with any child or even a car trip to Grandma’s house!

    Enjoy your Friday night and get ready for some crafty posts to come!