Saturday, February 25, 2012

Birthday Recap!

Today is my birthday(for a few more minutes anyway). It was my first birthday as Mrs. Price! I suppose I should celebrate 25... because well, now I can rent a car! (whoohoo?) It was actually a really fun and chill (chilly) Saturday. 

First we celebrated at 12am with a cupcake! A mini cupcake from Gigi's which Nathan brought home for me. It was DELISH. 
I got to sleep in & then we went to lunch with some of our dear friends! We went to Girasole, my favorite restaurant & where we had our wedding reception! 

Sweet friends!

Bestie! There is no telling how many many pictures we have together!

I just love these two girls!
After we finished our scrumptious lunch we headed back home for a little afternoon nap... I'm getting old people... I need my sleep!
Then we were off to the Hurricanes vs. FL Panthers Hockey game. Hockey is such a fun sport to watch. A big THANK YOU to Brian & Melissa Boucher for the tickets!
It was a fun time. We led the game the entire time... until 7 minutes were left & the Panthers tied it up. We went into overtime... then we went into a shoot out! It was my first one! Sadly, we lost. It was still a super fun time.
All in all, today was great! I feel very loved & very blessed to have lived on this earth for 25 years. I hope I get another 25... and maybe another 25 after that too! Thank you to everyone who made today so special AND a special thanks to my loving Mom & Dad for caring for me & bringing me into this this world!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Show & Tell Friday

It's Friday finally! I feel like this week has been so long! Good, but long. It really shouldn't though because Monday was President's Day & we had the day off. Weird how that works!

Anyway, today is Friday which means I get to share with you one of my favorite thrift store finds!

I'd like to introduce you to my Vintage Ray Ban Wayfarer Electric Red & Black Sunglasses!
You can find these on ebay for about $160...
 OR you can find them in a thrift store for $3.
No scratches & in great condition... I found myself some sweet shades! It pays to be thrifty folks.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Newest "job"

This week my house is much more messy... but that's ok. I also really haven't been that productive or crafty... but that's ok. I started my newest "job" this week! I can't believe it but I get paid to cuddle a sweet little 3 week old baby boy named, Dylan.

He is so precious. His mom is the sweetest! I feel extremely blessed to be able to have this job that I'm loving & bring in some extra funds for our little family!

Meet Dylan! 2 weeks & 6 days old.
Sweet cheeks & perfect lips!
Ah! I just love this part!

Pensive little face.

I love my job.

Pretty much I have the best 2 jobs ever! So I hang out with Dylan some mornings & I pick up "my" other 3 in the afternoon! Good practice I suppose. :)

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Homemade Laundry Detergent

I was visiting my friend Whitney a few weeks ago & while I was there she was telling me about how she was going to make detergent. I was impressed! Then she told me how easy it is & how much money she was planning to save by making her own... then I was super impressed! So here it is:

Many people use Fels-naptha soap I chose Octagon because it's what I found! I will say Fels-naptha has a much more piney scent & it's softer & easier to grate.
The ratio is as follows:
1 cup super washing soda
1 cup borax
1 bar of soap

Grate your bar of soap into a bow (A friend, Ellie, told me it's best to use a metal bowl to avoid your plastic one smelling piney... if you use Fels-naptha). This is by far the most tedious processes... but it's definitely worth it!

After that combine your powders with your soap in the container you'll be storing your detergent in. I didn't buy anything fancy... I found this one at the dollar store (and it's made in America if you're into that whole thing!)
This holds up to 1 gallon & it was $1... win win.
Now you could be done. However my friend, Ellie, also informed me you get a better mix if you throw this in your food processor! I tried it & she was right. The soap gets more fine & everything gets mixed really well, I definitely suggest this step if you have a food processor.

One more thing, I love scents (good ones only). Your clothes will smell clean without adding anything else (I tested this out on my husband's socks after an entire day of fishing & it's true... it works). BUT like I said I love scents. So you can add oil to your mixture! I used one of my favorite Glade scents, Sunny Days.

I used 5 bars of soap, 5 cups of borax, & 5 cups of super washing soda to make 12 cups of detergent! You only have to use 1 tablespoon per load!!! Which means I don't have to but anymore detergent for 192 more loads! This is definitely cheaper.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Tomato Almond Spread

Today I found a intriguing & delicious sounding spread. It's super easy & I always love an excuse to use my food processor.  After finding this recipe my husband & I were invited to an impromptu dinner at some dear friends house! Clearly now I had the perfect reason to try out this new recipe. I quickly replied, "I'll bring an appetizer!". This took me about 10 minutes to make & I think it taste quite yummy. We'll see tonight what everyone else thinks!

Here it is from A Couple Cooks - Quick Tomato Almond Spread Inspired by Katy She Cooks
What You Need 3/4 cup almonds
~14 ounces crushed tomatoes (San Marzano preferable, if you can find them!)
1 clove garlic
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/4 cup olive oil
What To Do
1  In a skillet over medium heat, toast the almonds until they are slightly browned and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Stir frequently, and watch them so they don’t burn. Let the almonds cool slightly. (You can skip this step in a pinch, but toasting the almonds helps to enhance their flavor.)
2  In the bowl of a good processor, combine the almonds with the tomatoes, 1 clove garlic, 1 tablespoon paprika, 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar, 2 teaspoons lemon juice, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes. Process until the nuts are finely ground.
Scrape down the bowl. Then with the processor running, add the 1/4 cup olive oil in a steady stream until a paste forms.
Serve with crackers or bread.

A Couple Cooks
I can't wait to see what everyone thinks! 

Show & Tell Friday

It's Friday which means it's time for show & tell of my most recent favorite thrift store purchase! I've been on the hunt for Robert Furber's Twelve Months of Flowers... specifically February for my birthday & October for Nathan's! Well, I finally found my month & it was in an acceptable frame, it was a good size, & the price was right. 
 Here is what she looks like up close! I don't know what it is but I just love these classic prints! I got the print & frame for $5. It's nice to have artwork in our home!
Here it is hanging in our dining room. I would have given you a full wall shot... but it's not complete! One day it will be complete- one day!

There you have it. This weeks $5 thrift store find!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

EASY Dinner- Italian Chicken & Veggies

It's difficult to get home & prepare a meal when it's already 7pm & both of us are starving! (Lets be honest, we don't even know what starving actually feels like- but you know what I mean!) That's why crock pots are THE best things ever.

Here is the recipe which I found on Pinterest & then tweaked:
  • 4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (thawed)
  • 1/2 cup Italian salad dressing
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning 
  • 1 can of chicken broth 
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
  • 4 to 6 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into wedges or thick slices
  • A hand full or so of baby carrots
  • 1/2 an yellow onion

Start with the chicken on the bottom of your crock pot (I added salt & pepper) then place half of the potatoes on top. Add half of the Italian dressing, half of the Italian seasonings, and half of the cheese. Then add the rest of the potatoes, the hand full of carrots, the rest of the dressing & the seasonings. I then sliced some onion for the top & topped that with the rest of the cheese! It's easy... really you can add in the veggies as you like, this is just what I did.

Set it on high... & walk away for about 4-5 hours! Easy. My husband loved it & I have to admit it was delicious! It was also super nice to walk into our home & it smell amazing!

*Tonight I made this again & decided to take the juice out & make a gravy... best idea ever! I just transferred the juice into a sauce pan, put it on high, whisked in flour & milk until the consistency was good & then I added my husband's favorite... Tony Chachere's for a little spice. It was divine!* 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Our 1st Valentine's Day

Crazy. This is my first Valentine's Day with Nathan! Not just as husband & wife but as a couple! You see we began dating in Dec. of 2010 and then we broke up & evaluated our feelings & relationship for the month of February.
(It was hard especially because of Valentine's Day & my birthday!) 

We realized that being with each other is what we wanted & more importantly we felt the Lord had really brought us together. We reunited & dated until August 2, 2011 when Nathan got down on one knee & asked me to be his wife! What a special & exciting moment?! 3 months & 18 days later we were married on November 20, 2011... that day was the best day ever. I suppose it was a quick time of dating/engagement but I think the old saying, "when you know, you know" is definitely true!

Here we are nearly 3 months of marriage later & celebrating our very first Valentine's Day together! I feel humbled & blessed to be able to share this day with a man I love & respect... and we get to do it for the rest of our lives.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

3 Ingredient Valentine Cookies

These are the cookies I mentioned kinda inventing earlier! It's a super easy recipe & it's perfect to make with kids because the dough is so pliable. They're tasty, pink,  & perfect for Valentine's Day which is so soon! 
 All you need is:
  1. 1 box of strawberry cake mix 
  2. 2 eggs
  3. 1/2 cup of oil
Mix all 3 ingredients together in a bowl...
See it takes on a play-dough type texture! Great for little helping hands!

Place the balls of dough on a cookie sheet and place in the oven set at 350. Let them cook for 5-7 minutes!

After they've cooled add a little cream cheese frosting (or whatever you prefer)!   
There you have it! The easiest Valentine cookies ever & they only require 3 ingredients.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Show & Tell Friday

Mr. Goodwill Hunting's -Rashon Carraway- has inspired me to share my favorite thrift store purchase with everyone today... "Show & Tell Friday". So here it is:

 A whopping $2 is what I paid! I literally walked around the store with it in hand trying to figure out what it was knowing it was coming home with me either way! It is from the back of a church pew and it's what is used to hold the hymnals & communion cups. I have my bouquet hanging in the cup holder on the right & on the far left is the one I carried in Whitney's wedding & next to it is the one I caught at Sarah's wedding! I love it in our bedroom.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Boom! Color!

No paint. No mess. Barely any money. To me that says win, win, win.

We're renters and even though we're allowed to paint we aren't so sure we'll be here that long & my hubby thinks it's best we don't mess with it. So being a huge appreciator of color I decided to wrap my wall with wrapping paper! It's easy to remove, it's super inexpensive, & the hardest part is removing the staples (which isn't that hard!) OH & it's cute! I'm keeping my eyes open for a cute print wrapping paper. Also a word to the wise... use a thicker paper because it's easier to work with! 

See! Just use scissors, a staple gun & a box cutter (for trimming).

Friday, February 3, 2012

Be My Valentine!

I must admit... I'm being much more festive this Valentine's Day. I'm not sure if it's because I have a sweet Valentine this year or if it's because we have our own home that I can decorate however I want. Either way I'm loving it!
This next little project was so fun to do & was super inexpensive. I can't wait to get it out every February.
What you'll need for this project is ribbon or twine or fabric, scrapbook paper, mod podge, scissors, paint, and stencils (unless you're a good painter freehand... I am not!).

Cut your scrapbook paper to the size you'd like! I just eyed mine, it's about a 6" by 6" square.
I used a 2" Helvetica stencil & some purple acrylic paint. It looked a little messy... 
So I used a paint pen to touch up each letter. I like the way it looks much better now!
I took scissors and cut holes in each square in the top corners. Then I took the strips of fabric that I bought for $3 (remember? I used it on this and that!) & then threaded the fabric through each hole on each square.
For the heart I cut a heart out of the pink scrapbook paper & mod podged it to a piece of purple scrapbook paper! 

So, easy as that you have a fun little banner for every Valentine's Day! 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Heart Wreath Tutorial!

For the month of February this is our heart wreath!

Here is a quick tutorial on how I made it. It's super easy & even better than that it cost me barely anything!
Go find a wire hanger in your closet... (Does anyone else here Madea yell A WIRE HANGER!? when they say/hear that?) Anyway, untwist the top and start shaping it into a heart.

It's not perfect but it doesn't matter! Note the duct tape... yeah I didn't want to twist the metal together so I used the duct tape to hold it together and create more of a point. It's easier & your fingers will thank you!

The next step is to cut pretty pieces of fabric into about 6" strips. Remember this fabric? I used it for my Neighbor's Valentine gifts. All that fabric cost me $3! This is the second project I've used the fabric for. So cut and tie... it's that easy!
You're going to want to get it nice and full. Watch a movie or something, it's mindless & easy!
Finally you'll have this! I actually gave my wreath a "little trim". I cut the top fabric a little shorter to try & keep the heart shape more obvious! 
I saved a piece of fabric to tie my wreath to the hanger but you could always use a ribbon or twine.
Have fun & remember it doesn't have to be perfect.
Happy February!