Repurpose Jars

Do you have an amazing mom like me? A mom who makes you homemade jam and salsa? Well I hope you do! Cause mom’s are the best. And mine is the very best! Like no one ever was!! (that’s a Pokemon joke btw).

My mom is super amazing and I could start a whole new blog just about her and you would all be super entertained bored out of your mind. Maybe. She is a pretty hysterical and amazing woman and has a ton of amazing stories. When my brothers and I can finally get her to write her book I will feature some stories on here.

Back to jams and jellies.
20140108-223744.jpg And salsa’s. Mmmmmm Mmmmmm.

My mom cans her own jam and graciously shares it with us which is awesome and good on the grocery bill. Cause jelly is EXPENSIVE…
And after I eat all we eat all the jam and salsa in a jar I clean them out and store them. Almost compulsively. Almost…

Now what to do with all these empty jars now that I have them?
Where does a girl turn but to PINTEREST!! Heck yes! Pinterest is the BOMB-DIGITY Y’ALL
(Sorry about that)

There are many cute things to do with jars. I narrowed it down to 2 projects. I’m gonna feature one today because the other one is simply just wire wrapped around it to hang little tea lights inside.

Since all of you are smart, intelligent, well informed people, I won’t bore you with step by step word instructions. I will show you with pictures!! YEAH PICTURES!!!

If you do have questions please be free to ask in the comments!

20140108-222910.jpg (I used an exacto knife to cut it out. Sorry words…I know)
20140108-223106.jpg (More words here… I sprayed them with clear sealer to keep it from chipping)

I used these as gifts filled with hot cocoa and marshmallows. Very cute! You can use them for candle holders too.
Any questions? Lemme know!

Much love my peeps!!


No More Resolutions!

Happy New Year everyone!
It’s 2014 and it’s time for a new look! Don’t ya’ think? Well I did.

Make any resolutions? Yeah…me neither. I don’t like making resolutions because I break them. Don’t we all. I really think it’s partly because we are ingrained that way from childhood. Instead of seeing of our parents make resolutions and follow through, they quit and give up and then laugh about it or feel bad and complain about their failure. And then the next year they do the same. So we learn that that is part of being an adult and growing up. We must make resolutions with unreal expectations and then give it up before the end of the month and do it again then next year.

You know what we call that? Insanity.

I hope that wasn’t to depressing.
I’ve decided that instead of telling myself, and anyone who will listen, a ‘resolution’, I will instead make a life choice. Not like in a serious “THIS IS MY LIFE CHOICE FOR ALL TIME”. Instead I see it as a choice I am making to add something or change something about my life. And I’m not waiting till the end of a year, or beginning of the year, because of all the things I have learned these past 27-ish years, it’s that every day is special. Every day counts and once the day is gone it is gone. There is no magic in a day but what you put into it.
Really I say this to get myself off my bum and do something with it instead of waiting till tomorrow, or next week, or next month.

With all that said, what do I wan’t to change in my life?

1. I guess first I would like to be more active. I need some physical activeness in my life. How will I achieve this? I suppose I will walk more. At least twice a week take a walk. Hopefully 3 times. In the near future, I would like to really do some dance or something. I really miss that. Dance or Zumba or something. I need to look into that. Something fun and active.

2. I want to blog more. Not every day, but again like 2-3 times a week. A regular blog schedule. Which means a schedule itself. So it’s time to pull out a schedule and pencil in the days and topics I want to blog about.

I think that’s pretty good for now. There are some other things I’d like to do with my life and time this year. I want to avoid making a whole bunch of “Things to do” list that will get discarded in a few weeks. I’m sure to add more to my life choice list for 2014 as the year goes on.

What about you? What do you want to do this year?
Did you make a resolution?



Pimp My Garland

I love the look of garland. I love it wrapped around posts and pillars, banisters and arches, doorways and people. OK maybe not people. And when I think of decorating with garland, I think of this:20131222-124804.jpg
I would love this kind of front entrance. As far as decorating goes. I have two problems though…one, I’m broke. And two, I live in Astoria and the wind is merciless out here at times. Anything I put out side needs to be able to stay put when gusts of wind of up to 40+ mph come through here. Seriously.

Much to my chagrin, my front entrance is not nearly as decorated as I would like to be. But I’m gonna be happy with what I have and keep my eyes open for sales after Christmas and during the summer.

Another thing with getting garland close to looking like that, is it costs about $50-$100 for garland that is pre-lit and pre-decorated and full like that. Like I said, I’m broke. Or close to it. I did happen to have a few bucks to pick up a strand of garland at Target when I was last in the valley. Cause there is no garland out here. At least not fake garland that is only a couple of bucks. Not even Dollar Tree.

Well I got it home and figured it would look about like this:20131222-125347.jpg Pretty skimpy and little. Yuck.

Fortunately I found this amazing site called Pinterest. You’ve probably never heard of it… (#hipster)
This fantastic woman and fellow blogger posted fab directions on how to pimp your garland. . She has much better picks and more steps and all these wonderful decorations she added to her garland. I kept mine pretty simple. I felt though that you all should see the original and be as inspired as I was to do my garland.

I started by wrapping lights around mine:20131222-125744.jpg

I then fluffed out the fake little branches and hung it over the arch way between the living room and the dining room.20131222-125950.jpg

It still looked a little….uh…scant… So now I took some of those extra clippings that I had from my tree and that I picked up from the tree lot that was just laying there.
Kelly (the original blogger) used 4 or 5 different fillers. A few different evergreen branches, some green bush clippings and holly. I noticed that there are holly bushes in the Safeway parking lot across the street and suggested to Brandon we come over when it got dark and clip some.
He told me that if I wanted to sneak over in the middle of the night and clip some branches I could do it on my own. And to make sure to do it on the far side of the parking lot so I wouldn’t be associated with our house and him. Or spotted sneaking with a bunch of pokey bush trimmings through the neighborhood.
I asked him where his sense of adventure was.
He rolled his eyes.
I didn’t get any…

That’s ok though.
Once I had it hung I used the tree clippings I did have and stuck them into the garland here and there to fill it out.20131222-130552.jpg
Can you see the difference? I can. Brandon thought it was a real strand of garland when he saw it. He couldn’t tell that it was originally fake with real sprigs stuck in. He actually tried to argue with me about it…seriously? Don’t argue with me. I know what I’m doing!
I feel like it could use some more….something. Some more pop probably. Brandon’s mom has some fantastic fake garland that is prelit and then she adds these really cute mini ball ornaments to it. I would love that. But Brandon said no. Maybe next year. I’m gonna keep my eyes peeled for more garland for next Christmas. Hopefully enough for all our railings and doorways…. and maybe one day like this lovely home….20131222-124804.jpg

Until then!

Cookie Monster!!

It’s Cookie Time!!
I decided last week to get all my baking done. This decision means that I stayed up till 2 a few nights in a row. But it’s all worth it.
I love to bake.
It’s awesome.
And fun.
It’s a science.
An art.

I figure that if I lived at Hogwarts I would be excellent at Potions. Since Potions is really an art form, and the slightest deviation can ruin the result. Baking is really the same kind of thing. Maybe with a little more wiggle room.

Not only did my midnight baking deprive me of my blessed sleep, but it also created quite a disaster in our house. With all the time spent in the kitchen, and only a very small amount of decorating done there were half finished projects, decorations laying around, laundry piling up, plus our vacuum broke…it was a mess. A very large mess. A Meh-meh-meh-meh MESS, as I would say it when I was young. It was really bad that I could not take pictures.

To add to that, Brandon and I have been traveling every weekend since the week before Thanksgiving. Yes, really. It has been tiring, and we decided to have Christmas here at our home.
Really it was more like us going, “We’re not going anywhere for Christmas”. And that was it. So everyone is coming here. Now I’m on to decorating and wrapping gifts. My favorite parts!
No really.
It’s my favorite.
I love it!

So now my baking is done and I’ve begun the delivery process.
I didn’t do any step-by-step instructions on these cookies, but if any of them look super tasty and you want the recipe I will share it! Just let me know in the comments.

Here are all the plates I put together.

AND here are the left overs!

Honestly there are quite a few in there. Even though you can’t see it.

I wanted to give you a break down of the plates.

Eight types this year. I don’t remember how many I did last year. Though I know it was a lot. Usually my mom and I bake together and we trade some cookies around. There were at least 4 other cookies I had on the plates last year. This is a pretty good amount though. 🙂

If there is a cookie you want a recipie for please let me know. The Peppermint Cookies are like Girl Scout Thin Mints, and the Kiss Pies are super easy and not too sweet. And the Lemon Cookies are a favorite of many people.

I hope that you all get to eat many delicious cookies and enjoy the wonderful aroma of fresh baked goodies in your homes this season.
And like me, I hope you get to experience to joy of sharing your goodies with people you care about, or really anyone. Because that’s why I do it. I bake to share. It’s better that way.

Love ya!

Christmas Time in the City

ACK! It’s like December 12th! Holy Cow! How did it get to be so late?!

I meant to post many more times before this with my Christmas Decorating and activities, but all those activities have taken so much time, plus all the traveling we have been doing the month now that we live 100 miles from our family and friends, that I’ve barely had time to do much posting.

But now I find myself with a few minutes as the timer on my oven counts down with the last few batches of Christmas cookies to post at least ONE thing in our home.

This summer I found a beautiful miniature village set at an estate sale! I was super excited and gladly gave the last of my spending money for it!

I’ve always wanted one, just like my mom used to have at Christmas time. *sigh* It just says Christmas!
I’m sure I would have gotten one earlier in my life if I had a place to actually display it. But I never had any.

Well now I have an abundance of space to display many things! Which is AWESOME! And also a new challenge to find, or my favorite, MAKE things to go on those spaces!

At first I had the village in our large picture window. It looked great! Buuut we wanted our tree in the window so I had to move it. But it looks good!
I chose here because:
1. I don’t have kids. So it’s totally safe on a lower level.
2. There was a big open space there in that corner since we moved some things around to make room for the tree.
3. The plugs were close and I didn’t have to move it far.
I’m an easy person. I mean, I like to make things easy. No need to over think, over do, or over….move…? things that don’t need it. 🙂

So here is the first Christmas thing I’m posting.

I suppose the next will be all the cookies I’m baking, so stay tuned!


The Green Machine

Hello there friends…Have i introduced you to my friend?
Well here meet my friend!
It’s my little Green Machine!

I love this little guy! He’s so Yummy!

I lnow what you mught be thingking that that drink is GREEN!
I used to be like you…the green really threw me off…but don’t be a COLORIST! Lol! jk!

It’s super tasty.
What’s awesome is this is so customizable! You can use different fruits and veggies and make it your own! I’ll give you all approximate amounts, but really you can add as much as you want.

Step 1: A BLENDER!!! (LOL)

Actually, A Banana! 20131127-224804.jpg
Slice, or just break it into chunks.
AAAAAAAANNNNND Note! If your banana is black-ish, you will taste it in your smoothie. Just Saying….
And I suppose you could use any soft fruit here or skip it if you want, but I think the banana really helps thicken it up.

Step 2: Add Juice! (1/2-1 cup)
I prefer a tropical blend, but you can use whatever. Make sure that it’s a fruit that will blend well with the other fruits you put in your smoothie….
Oh and the top of this carton says: 20131127-235839.jpg Yeah…LOL’s…. It’s like my mom trying to make a social reference…

Step 3: Spinach!! (A handful….or whatever)
20131127-230021.jpg There are like A TON of different greens you can use in this step! Like Bok Choy, Parsley, Kale, Cucumber, Avacados (ok that’s not a leafy green thing, but you get the idea)

Step 4: Yogurt! (About 1 cup)
20131127-230655.jpg The suggestion was originally plain greek yogurt. Yuck. No Offense. On the Plain, not the Greek.
I use Vanilla yogurt. You can use what ever you like. And if you do choose to use plain yogurt, of any kind, and you find it’s not sweet enough you can add honey.

Step 5: Frozen Fruit! (About 1 cup….I Think….)
20131127-231347.jpg Again you can use what ever kind you want. Use frozen fruit because it will make your drink cold and ice-y without the ice. Ya know how sometimes blended ice will float to the top and make it more slushie-ish? Well frozen fruit wont. 🙂

Step 6: Blend!20131127-231746.jpg Sometimes you gotta push the ingredients around if it isn’t blending well.

And Voila! Smoothie!!20131127-232513.jpg It’s super good!! And works a meal supplement.

So go have fun and make your own smoothie!!

OH! And Hey! Here’s a teaser!!
Know what all that is!? All my fall stuff!!!
You know what that means?!
Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess. Guess.


Something Broken, Something Left Over, Something Reused

Sometimes I feel like I am just one broken coffee cup away from being a hoarder.
I have only seen a few episodes of the show Hoarders, and it honestly just makes me upset. Seriously! I don’t understand how other people, their loved ones, can live in the chaos, and filth, and gross-ness of a hoarded house like they have on the show.

I guess saying that makes me feel better that I am not even close to being at that stage of hoarding.
However I do have tendency to look at things like broken dishes and toilet paper rolls and think “Hmm…what could I do with this…?”

I keep at as a personal rule, and to relieve my husbands concern at my ever growing pile of “junk”, as he puts it, that I will only keep an item for 2 months, and if by that time I have not done anything with it I will get rid of it. Sometimes I break that rule and throw it out early, or keep it for longer. (Hee-hee)

My loving husband donated to my crafty cause, a set of chimes from an old drum set.
You see, I really love wind chimes. I love the sound they make. It brings back great memories of younger days spent at my grandparents. Summer afternoons, laying in the living room as afternoon sun streaked across my face through the windows. A cool breeze passes by the wind chimes out front and through the screen door tickling my skin and the chimes, my ear drums. (sigh)

It may be odd to say this, but I want that wind chime. My grandparents still have it and I WILL INHERIT IT ONE DAY!!! Or I’mm sneak onto their porch and steal it one night…hmmm.

Anyway. I now had some chimes to make my own wind chime or two and now all I needed was something to attach them to.

Then it finally hit me, as I lay in bed one evening, that I now have a brand new iPhone. And that my very cool handmade bamboo phone case for my smaller previous iPhone is no longer useful! So why not make it into a wind chime!

HA HA! Genius!
I hot glued the two parts together, they were two parts. (Isn’t it a cute design!?)

Then I got out my power drill!!! OK my husbands power drill… and drilled a few small holes.

And finally strung the chimes! (Or STRUCK the chimes! lol)
I think I will spray it with my sealer spray before I put it outside, since it’s bamboo and will most likely rot in the wonderful Northwest Winter Weather.

I have more chimes left over, what other items that might be laying around a home would make a good wind chime?
I’d love to hear your ideas!


P.S. Today I will leave you with a special note!