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Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Timmy Cahill Project

Just another little push for those of you who have a little extra kindness in your hearts this Christmas season.

The Timmy Cahill Project is a great cause that is getting ready to make their big donation to families who have had to say good-bye to their babies. Timmy himself fought a very strong fight in his precious 4 days.

His parents recieved a bereavement box after his passing... something they now cherish. They have decided to create more bereavement boxes to donate to the NICU. Please see the link in this post, or off to the right hand side of this page for more information.

Free Silhouette Download 12-21


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Only 3 more days of downloads!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

I eat *my* veggies!

Not as often as I should, but I try! One of my favorite veggie fixes is also one of the fastest ones! Very few ingredients too!

What you need:
Bag of frozen veggies (any will do!)
Butter/Margarine/Butter Flavored Cooking Spray (any will work, as long as it's not too high of a water content)
Salt, Pepper and Garlic(powder, fresh or minced will work)
OR
Garlic Pepper

Toss it all into a pan, and cook on medium till the veggies start to brown around the edges...

You will need enough butter to keep the veggies from sticking to the pan, and give the spices something to stick to! After that, it's all about how buttery you like your veggies to taste!

Enjoy!

You can make this meal a little more hearty by adding some chicken to the mix. Just make sure to fully cook it first. The veggies will cook very fast and won't give the chicken much time in the pan!
**Tip: if you use Butter flavored spray (yes, I'm talking about the stuff us use to spray the cookie sheet), you will feel like you're using a crazy amount. And you may need to keep adding more, but, it's calorie free, so don't stress!

Free Silhouette Download 12-20


http://www.silhouetteonlinestore.com/v2/viewShape.aspx?id=23866

4 more days of free downloads!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Quick Toddler Lunch!

I believe that I am currently parenting one of the pickyest toddlers there is... of course, I also believe that most parents feel this way at one point or another!
 
After yet another lunchtime of me watching my child push one thing after another off of her tray, I just about gave up and let her eat popcorn and peanut butter. However, I decided to try one more thing, and go figure, it worked!
 
It's basically homemade Mac 'n Cheese, but with Spaghetti noodles instead of Elbow pasta.
 
  • Boil the noodles and drain
  • Add in a slice of cheese
  • Add a touch of milk and/or butter to make it creamy

... viola'! Success!!!


I left the noodles full length. They made for added fun (and added Mommy free time) during lunch time!


Excited!

So excited! One of my Etsy Listings was just added to someone's Treasury List!

http://www.etsy.com/treasury/MTgwMDg5NDh8MTUyNDc4NjQ1Mw/an-ohio-state-christmas

It's my little Preemie Hat!

Free Silhouette Download 12-17



http://www.silhouetteonlinestore.com/v2/viewShape.aspx?id=23863

Keep checking back! I'll list a new one every day from now till December 24th!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Free Silhouette Download 12-16


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Free Poise

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Grab one of these samples!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Free Silhouette Download 12-15



http://www.silhouetteonlinestore.com/v2/viewShape.aspx?id=23861

Free Download a day till December 24th!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Free Silhouette Download



http://www.silhouetteonlinestore.com/v2/viewShape.aspx?id=23860

One free download a day from now till December 24th!



http://www.silhouetteonlinestore.com/v2/viewShape.aspx?id=23860

One free download a day from now till December 24th!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Free Silhouette Downloads


For those of you who have a Silhouette, they are giving away a free design every day from now till December 24th! Today's image:



I don't have a Silhouette (yet) but this 'freebie thing' they've got going on is enticing me even more!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Shop now for years later?

There are so many books that I read when I was younger, and I'd LOVE to pass them along to my girls. Unfortunately, after 2 younger sisters and loaning to friends or giving to cousins, my beloved collections are gone. I've been contemplating starting the search now to build the collections for my two girls.

Just based on the collections I loved as a child, we'd start with:
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_tipCYY2gX_g/TAU7tYoIQjI/AAAAAAAAAAk/fE34BiuiJB0/s1600/Boxcar%2520Children.jpg 
I remember my mom reading my sibs and I this series when we were younger, and I loved it. It made me want to play outside more (which is always a good thing) build beds out of leaves, forts out of branches etc.

Next on the list:
http://www.ltl.appstate.edu/litcircleunits/litcirunits_avery01/wilder/LittleHouse/littlehouse.gif
My Aunt gave me this whole series when I was 8 or 9. I read them over and over and over again, into adulthood.

As my girls get older, I think I'd like to get them started on:
http://assets.flavorwire.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/01/6a00e55007a314883401053696b574970c-800wi.jpg
Maybe first they should get the Little Sister Series though...
http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51A4T2PC3DL._SL500_AA300_.jpg
This series came out after I was well into the original series, so I didn't read them at all. However, my youngest sister (who wanted to be reading books like me) did like to read them!

By the time I read these to them, or they read to themselves, I think it will be time to start with another fun tradition that I thought of. Using:
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-HS-DJ9zCL_o/TgQoHBBTXyI/AAAAAAAAA9M/yLIcRStq3bU/s1600/harry_potter+books.jpg
Since these books begin roughly on Harry's Birthday every year, starting at age 11, I thought it would be fun to give our kids the first book on their 11th Birthday, the second book on their 12th birthday etc.

Once they are in High School, I think they'd be ready to read:
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IgVcRgpnres/TXePCWgcwVI/AAAAAAAADKw/_cikZAVdSYM/s1600/TwilightSaga.jpg


Now, these are just a few of my favorite series from when I was growing up (and the last, when I was an adult). If we are blessed with boys in the future, we'll have to come up with a few different series to give them. But I love the idea of my girls reading the same books I grew up reading. I loved to read. I was one of those kids that got into trouble from their parents for staying up all night reading!

Swag Bucks by Noon=48!

12/09/11Swagbucks TV                                      3 SB

12/09/11Swagbucks TV                                      3 SB

12/09/11Searching the Web                               39 SB

12/09/11Bonus Swag Bucks: Daily Poll                1 SB

12/09/11Bonus Swag Bucks: NOSO Visit            2 SB

Wow! 48 Swag Bucks by noon! I'l loving that 39er!

Ooey Gooey Lemon Cake

Ok, so, I'd seen a recipe on Pinterest (yes, I have an addiction) for a cake that requires one can of lemon pie filling, and one box of angel food cake. For some space cadet reason, I thought that you could use any cake mix. So, when I sent my husband to the store, I did not have him get a box of angel fook cake, just a can of lemon pie filling. Oops!

Looked up the recipe, looked in the pantry. I had:
http://www.foodandfunfromhome.com/images/P/150-196-B.gif
and this:
http://mybrands.com/images/products/xlarge/wilderness-quick-easy-lemon-pie-filling.jpg and that was it. I did have most of the baking ingredients needed to make the cake on it's own, but I was feeling brave, so I made my own little concoction... and it was a hit!

Instead of following the ingredients on the box, combine:
Cake Mix
Pie Filling
2 Eggs
1 Tbs Oil
1 1/4 cup of water

Bake according to the instructions on the box, check it before you take it out. The toothpick will not necessarily come clean, as this is an ooey gooey cake, but, you should be able to see that it's baked and no longer a batter.

After it cools, sprinkly the top with powdered sugar! Enjoy!

I have no picture of the finished product. I took it to Thanksgiving and it was gone before a picture could be taken, but... that tells you how yummy it was!

Swag Bucks before Noon 12-8

Here's my before noon earnings from yesterday:

12/08/11Swagbucks TV                                        3 SB

12/08/11Searching the Web                                   9 SB

12/08/11Swagbucks TV                                        3 SB

12/08/11Bonus Swag Bucks: Daily Poll                  1 SB

12/08/11Swagbucks TV                                        3 SB

12/08/11Swagbucks TV                                        3 SB

21 Bucks! Not bad!


Baby Lilac Hat


http://www.etsy.com/listing/88184856/white-hat-with-lilac-blooms

Something I have decided to do: For every baby (infant or preemie) hat that is purchased, the same style hat (in baby colors) will be donated to a NICU. I have several NICU's in mind as places to start, but if anyone has a specific NICU that they would like a hat sent to, I'm more than willing! Please share this bit of info with your friends, especially anyone you know who's been touched by a NICU angel (that's what I call the nurses and doctors in NICUs).

Thursday, December 8, 2011

From Scratch Hot Cocoa

You know those first days of winter when you haven't gone out and bought the hot chocolate mixes, but it's suddenly snowing and you're in the mood for a good cup of Hot Cocoa, but you don't want to go out and deal with winter? Well, that happened in my house this year...

So, Hot Cocoa from scratch:

You'll need:
Milk (I used Whole)
Chocolate Chips (I used Semi-Sweet)
Brown Sugar

I put in about 2 cups of Milk, 1 1/2 Tbs of Brown Sugar and somewhere between 1/8 and 1/4 a cup of Chocolate Chips. Just heat on Low/Medium heat and stir constantly until it all melts.

*Tip: The Chocolate Chips will take forever to fully melt/disolve into the milk. You'll think that turning the heat up will help, but it will only curdle/scald the milk. Just be patient! If you do end up with little swirls of unmelted chocolate, it just makes a yummy little surprise as you drink your Hot Cocoa!
Mmmmmm!


Snack Time!

I'd pinned a pin about feeding a toddler by filling compartments of a muffin tin. "Brilliant", I thought! However, one muffin try dropped onto the tile floor and a screaming baby (who likes to be woken from a nap like that?) later, and I knew I needed another way. An egg carton worked perfectly! Quiet when dropped, small compartments, and more compartments (which can also be a downfall trying to fill!).




Taster's Choice

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Go to this ^^ link and grab a couple of coupons.
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Free Beechnut Welcome Kit

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These guys send out the good coupons... for FREE stuff, not just a certain amount off!

Swag Before Noon

12/07/11 Swagbucks TV 3 SB
12/07/11 Swagbucks TV 3 SB
12/07/11 Swagbucks TV 3 SB
12/07/11 Swagbucks TV 3 SB
12/07/11 Swagbucks TV 3 SB
12/07/11 Searching the Web 7 SB
12/07/11 Bonus Swag Bucks: NOSO Visit 2 SB
12/07/11 Bonus Swag Bucks: Daily Poll 1 SB

25 Swag Bucks Before Noon yesterday! I plan to try to break my record today (assuming my babies sleep in like they normally do)... will post later with my success!

Join me on Swagbucks... use the link to the right!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Pizza Pizzazz

Often my husband and I go out to eat, and between the (sometimes) appetizer, the salad, the rolls etc, by the time the meal comes, I'm already stuffed! Not that I don't love a good take-home box, really, I do :), but I hate that I usually leave most of a side that is fried, and I do love my fried foods. I love french fries, fried okra, fried mushrooms, fried cauliflower, homemade potato chips, egg rolls, crab rangoon (did I mention I love fried things?) etc., but by the time they've sat in that take-home box overnight, they've turned into a soggy mess. I've put them in the oven, but it tends to just dry them out (unless I'm missing the perfect setting). I ususally end up tossing them outside for the stray cats that wonder by...

Not anymore! Folks, I have found the solution!

http://i.walmartimages.com/i/p/00/07/57/41/03/0007574103430_500X500.jpg 

Yup, the handy dandy always faithful Pizza Pizzazz. We've always used it for pizza (duh), chicken patties, garlic bread etc. but that was about it. I had some fried okra and homemade potato chips from our dinner the other night, and really really wanted to try to salvage them. I put them on the Pizzazz with the top and bottom heaters on for 6 minutes... perfection! They were crispy on the outside, and were actually hot on the inside, and NOT dried out! Yummy! Never again will I leave or toss my fried sides!

On the slightly weird side, I put ketchup on my fried okra. My husband, a southern boy, says I'm nuts.

B1G2 Snapfish Calendar

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http://promo.snapfish.com/caldec/cj_caldec/

Taster's Choice Coffee Sticks

http://www.tasterschoice.com/App_Themes/global/images/tasters_choice_logo.png

http://www.tasterschoice.com/offers/free-sample.aspx

I have to say, I'm not normally an instant coffee drinker... but, after a few rough nights of being up with a baby and getting zero sleep, I really don't want to take the time to brew a pot. I've found that these really are pretty good!
Enjoy!

Gluten Free Cookie Recipe Book!

http://www.couldntbeparve.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/05/chocolate-chip-cookies-gluten-free.jpg

http://www.frugalskills.com/pdf/Gluten-Free-Cookie-Recipes-by-Frugal-Skills.pdf

Click on ^that link to download a Gluten Free Cookie Recipe book! The Recipe list is:

Brown Rice Flour Mix
Chocolate Chip Cookies
Gingersnaps
Sugar Cookies
Peanut Butter Cookies
Shortbread Cookies
Almond Butter Cookies
Oatmeal Cookies
Linzertorte Cookies
Storage Tips


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Free Keepsake for Homebirthers

http://e-customcards.com/uploads/2/8/4/5/2845415/5748199.jpg

http://e-customcards.com/1/post/2011/12/homebirth-keepsake-giveaway.html

E Custom Cards is giving away a hand drawn home birth keepsake drawing (a $40.00 value). Please view the link above to see how to enter! Share with your friends!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Help a friend out...

My dear friend, Cara  lost her baby boy, Timmy, in September. Since his passing, Cara and her family have found an awesome way to give back, and make things a "little easier" for other families who have to endure what they did. The Timmy Cahill Fund has been started to create Bereavement Boxes for NICU families to hold keepsakes and personal items of their little ones. However, in order to do this they need our help. To donate through Paypal, send money to timmycahillfund@yahoo.com. For further help with donating money go to http://www.carepages.com/carepages/timothycahill/updates/3183378
 This is totally legit! So please, if you care to help, do!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Preemie Hat

My first Etsy listing! I love this little hat! To me, it's the perfect little Christmas hat, or a little sports fan hat... the Arkansas Razorbacks come to mind, but that's mostly because my In-Laws are big fans! 


http://www.etsy.com/listing/87689692/preemie-hat

Something I have decided to do: For every baby (infant or preemie) hat that is purchased, the same style hat (in baby colors) will be donated to a NICU. I have several NICU's in mind as places to start, but if anyone has a specific NICU that they would like a hat sent to, I'm more than willing! Please share this bit of info with your friends, especially anyone you know who's been touched by a NICU angel (that's what I call the nurses and doctors in NICUs).

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Paper Crafts Magazine

BOGO Free! Buy one subscription for you, send another to a friend for free!

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Scrapbooking e-book.

http://scrapbooktradingpost.blogspot.com/2011/12/free-e-book.html

Free scrapbooking e-book!


Splenda Sample AND Coupon

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Monday, November 21, 2011

SwagBucks





My Earning SO FAR today... 25 points!!!


11/21/11Swagbucks TV3 SB
11/21/11Swagbucks TV3 SB
11/21/11Swagbucks TV3 SB
11/21/11Swagbucks TV3 SB
11/21/11Searching the Web10 SB
11/21/11Bonus Swag Bucks: NOSO Visit2 SB
11/21/11Bonus Swag Bucks: Daily Poll1 SB





How awesome is that!!! And I'm still going strong! I just walk by the computer, click a new video and keep walking! Please click the link in the right column to sign up and start earning your own points!










































Want Easy Swagbucks?

I was an extreme Swagbucks skeptic at first. Who has time to do everything required to get enough points to be worth anything? Well, after doing Swagbucks for a year now, I have to say I'm a believer. Just spending 10 minutes each day doing the Daily Poll, the NOSO, Searching (till I get points), and Swagbucks TV, I've been able to put quite a bit of cash into my PayPal account!

I'm thrilled because I just found a way to earn even more Swagbucks, and entertain my toddler at the same time. I used to do the Swagbucks TV just every once in a while, because I didn't want to spend the extra time just sitting watching short clips. Today, however, I happened to have the computer on the kitchen table. It was lunch time for my toddler, so I sat her in her booster chair. She saw a puppy on the Swagbucks TV clip and got excited, asking for 'more puppy?' So, I played her a video, and another, and another. I cleaned the kitchen while she watched, when one ended, I just started another one etc.

I earned 12 Swagbucks, got my kitchen clean, and fed my toddler lunch! It was great! Click on the Swagbucks link in the column on the right, and join in the fun!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cinnamon Chocolate Brownies

I have this new found obsession... Cinnamon in Chocolate. I add cinnamon to my chocolate cake, brownies, cookies, and even hot chocolate. My husband says it's out of control, I tell him he's wrong, and he better just accept it! The funny thing is, he loves everything I bake!

Basically, I followed your average from the box/bag chocolate cake recipe, except in place of the oil, I added my Home Made Crock Pot Apple Sauce  Yes, I may have a slight obsession with that recipe! The nice thing is, you taste zero apple, just the cinnamon, and it keeps the cake so super moist! While this is a cake mix, the applesauce makes it more the thickness/texture of brownies.

For the frosting, I heated up about half a can of Sweetened Condensed Milk, and about half a bag of chocolate chips... I added a touch of milk after it was all mixed, just to make it easier to spread on the cake. The SCM keeps the frosting soft for days!

Ooey Gooey Spice Cake

Seriously, this is the best spice cake I've ever made! EVER. It was sooo moist, so rich... MMmmmm. I usually find spice cake to be dense and kinda dry, so I wasn't thrilled when my mom asked me to make this one night. However, I was out of oil... and eggs. So, I improvised.

I used a boxed mix, replaced the oil with melted butter (exact measurements) and used my Home Made Crock-Pot Apple Sauce in place of eggs. 1/2 a cup per egg.

Ah.Maz.Ing.... Seriously...

Homemade Applesauce/Apple Butter in a Crock-Pot

I'd found a recipe on Pinterest for Crock-Pot Applesauce. I had a bunch of home grown apples (not my home) that were getting pretty nasty looking, so I decided I'd better do something with them! I made mine with a few variations from the Pinterest pin, so I'll share my version instead.

What you'll need:
Apples
Juice (I used White Grape, but I assume many would use Apple :)
Cinnamon
Sugar

If you like your applesauce to be a bit on the chunky side (like me), the only real way to get texture, without having hard bits of apple, is to leave some skin on. So, if this is your chosen method, chop the apples into very small chunks/dices. If you like silky smooth applesauce, peel the apples, then chunk them any size. The smaller they are, the faster they'll be done!

Put the apples in a crock pot on high for a fast (2-3 hours) result, or low if you're going to be away from the crock pot for a while. Add about a cup of your chosen juice, and sprinkle in some cinnamon and sugar. If you're using a sweet apple, you probably don't need much sugar, if any. You can always add more at the end, so if you don't want to commit to a lot of cinnamon at this point, you don't have to... it just makes your house smell really yummy if you add it at this point!

Check the apples after a few hours. Stir the juices in and around every once in a while if you're around to do so. Once they are soft enough to mash, you can do so with a potato masher or a hand held blender. Taste test, add more sugar and spice if you like, and viola'! It's done!

The recipe (for me) is the same for apple sauce or apple butter. For butter, take the lid off and let some of the juice evaporate. I wouldn't leave for hours at a time on this part, because you don't want it to get dried out!

Here's mine!


Paper Culture Free Card

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Like them on Facebook and fill out your info for a free card!

Crock-Pot rebate

Crock-Pot $5 Check Rebate Form
November 30, 2011  Crock-Pot Rebates
 

Receive a $5 mail in rebate, when you purchase any Crock-Pot Slow Cooker with a retail purchase price of $24.50 or greater.

To receive your rebate, mail original dated cash register receipt showing product (s) purchased and completed certificate. See mail in rebate form for more details. Allow 6 to 8 weeks for delivery.

Nature's Select Dog Food

http://www.naturalpetfooddelivery.com/images/productimages/natural_dog_cat_food350.jpg

http://www.naturalpetfooddelivery.com/htmls/petfood_sample_request.php

Even if you don't have a dog, get a sample and take it to a Humane Society!

**We currently only distribute to these states close to our local distributors:
Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and the DC area.

La Creme Rebate

https://fbcdn-profile-a.akamaihd.net/hprofile-ak-snc4/277043_141395139253843_1441245696_n.jpg

https://www.facebook.com/pages/La-Cr%C3%A8me/141395139253843?sk=app_182715721759843

Like them on Facebook, and Click the Rebate tab on the left.

Seattle's Best

http://cdn.hunt4freebies.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Seattle-Best-Coffe-w240-h240.png  https://www.facebook.com/SeattlesBestCoffee

Like them on Facebook and click on the 'Working Black Friday' like on the left side. Get your freebie!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Homemade Croutons

On Pinterest, I'd found a recipe for home made croutons. I followed the recipe to a T for my first batch, but both my husband and I thought they were very bland. So, in the many batches we've made since (yeah, ours are that good), we've altered the recipe to make them much more bold flavored!

What You'll Need:
1/2 stick of Butter
Bread, cubed
Butter Flavored Cooking Spray
Seasoning: Garlic, Onion, Parmesan, Spicy etc... just one needed per batch!

Cut up bread into whatever sized croutons you like. I wouldn't go too small, but they don't have to be huge. I think mine were about 1 inch long x .5 inch wide x.5 inch thick... but again, your preference. We've used Panera's Sundried Tomato Bread, and French Bread, and also some Sesame from Panera. Any kind will work really, though I haven't tried sandwich sliced bread.

Either leave the sit out on the counter for ONE night, or bake them in the oven at 300 for 10 minutes so they can dry out a bit.

Melt the butter in a pan on MEDIUM heat (don't ever change the heat setting from medium!), and sprinkle some of your chosen seasoning in. Just a light dusting over the top of the melted butter. This will absorb into your croutons... the more seasoning you use, the stronger the flavor!

Let the bread sit in the pan in a single layer. Check one or two pieces ever few minutes to see if they've started to brown on the other side. Once they brown, flip them over. Just before you flip them, spray them with the Butter Cooking Spray and sprinkle on another dusting of seasoning.You'll almost need to do this piece by piece to not burn any. You don't have to toast the exact opposite side of the crouton, just make sure that you're toasting a side not already toasted!

Once the other side has browned, take the off the heat. They can sit in the pan to cool and will stay good and crunchy. After they have cooled, put them in an air-tight storage bag or container. 


 My husband and I have found this to be a great way to rescue bread that might be tasting a little old or dried out. They last for weeks after you make them, so make several batches to have on hand! We will never buy croutons again!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

No more lost pacifier!

The best time saver that I've found yet... hanging the pacifier on the wall. No more middle of the night searching for that teeny tiny little thing buried in the blanket, or under a stuffie, or between the crib mattress and the slats.
I just took a plastic stick-on hook, put it on the wall (well out of baby reach) and viola'! An instant pacifier holder! I can put two on there, and in the middle of the night, grab one off of there for instant quiet baby, then do a quick sweep of the crib for the 'missing' pacifier. If I find it, great, I hang it up, if not, I have another one on the hook for later!