Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Black Dudly Review

The Black Dudley Murder by Margery Allingham

Type: mystery

Synopsis: Dr. Abbershaw is attending a weekend house party, in a dark manor in England. During the first night one of the hosts is killed. There are all sorts twist in the events following, including a little romance. In here were are also introduced to Albert Campion, who only plays a minor part in this book but goes on to play the main character in other books.

Review: This book was originally published in 1929. So think of Agatha Christie type murder mystery. I found this to be a nice old fashioned English  murder mystery. Some of the parts didn't flow very well. Even though this is listed as an Albert Campion mystery, the main character and the one who is follows the mystery from start to finish is Dr. Abbershaw.

2.5 out of 5 stars. 

Monday, December 12, 2011

Meal Monday

Well I'm sure that everyone is a little busy right now. I now I'm just swapped. So here what we had for meals last week:

  • Roasted Chicken and mashed potatoes
  • pork roast 
  • chicken hot dish using leftover chicken
  • Shepard's pie
  • spaghetti
  • out
  • pancakes

Anything good in your kitchen? How about some holiday treats?

If I don't stop back this week have a great week.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Vixen Review

Vixen by Lillian Larkin

Type: young adult historical fiction

Synopsis: Book one of The Flappers series. This is the story of three young women living in Chicago during the twenties. You have Gloria who is engaged to a man from a powerful family, but who wants to be part of the flapper crowd. Then there's Lorraine who is tired of being in Gloria's shadow. And lastly there is Clara, Gloria cousins, who is trying to hide her past, of a flapper living in New York, by being a good girl.

Review:  The first part of this book was a little slow, but when you are reading from three points of view it always takes me a little while to get into the story. I thought I was an okay read and I will probably try another book in this series to see what happens to our characters. 

2.5 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

44 Scotland Street review

44 Scotland Street by Alexander McCall Smith

Type: fiction

Synopsis: Pat starting a new job and is looking for a flat to share. She ends up sharing a flat with Bruce. There are also many other characters in the book that you meet and spend time with.

Review: This was originally published as an on going series in a newspaper, so all the chapters are short. I had a hard time reading this, because of that. I probably would have loved to read it, in the newspaper, though. But as a book I found all the characters a little distracting. I do have to admit this was another book that I just couldn't finish. If I had more time with it I probably would have, as it is not a bad book, just something I couldn't concentrate on right now.

1.5 out of 5 stars.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Meal Monday

Okay another short and sweet meal plan

  • Out to eat
  • Shrimp Tacos -- found here. I used precooked shrimp this time. I didn't like it as much.
  • hamburger stroganoff
  • salad with ham
  • stuff pasta shells
  • taco soup -- leftovers from the freezer
  • tuna melts
Anything good in your kitchen?

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Crafty progress

Well how is every body's weekend going? Me? I should be busier then busy, but have yet to actually get anything done. Just to give you an update. The Boy moved to Texas with his mom this summer. He has now decided to move back home with us on a more permanent bases. I have mixed feelings on this. But other than that this is causing us to rearrange a good portion of our apartment. That is on top of trying to get ready for Christmas. Some of the plans for the weekend include the normal errands (library and grocery store), dig out and set up a Christmas tree, put away everything on two folding tables that are in the office (which is now being converted to our bedroom/office), laundry and other house cleaning, and paint a cupboard that the hubby sanded down for me. And well Hubby is scheduled to work OT all weekend.

But anyways I thought I stop by and share a small amount of crafty progress since last time.

First off we have some some cross stitch that I dug out. Now don't think that I got all this down over the last couple of months. The fact is I've been working on this for about ten years. But I know that I haven't touched it for at least five years. Newly worked on is the blue at on the what will be the wall and then tree and Santa in a rain coat on top of the bookcase.

I also add a couple more squares to my crazy afghan. Measuring it out I'm at about the half way point on the first row. So as a note to myself, I need 11 blocks for a total of 22 blocks in the first row.

I've also gotten both sleeves done and have now started on the body of my sweater. Not that one can tell by the picture but the bottom ribbing is down, as well as the pocket fronts. Then I'm about two inches into the body.

Well I hope everyone is has plans for a good weekend.
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Thursday, December 1, 2011

November Best of Kid Books

This has got to be one of my favorite kids books that I've read in a long time. It's The Man in the Moon by William Joyce. This is part of a new series called: The Guardians of Childhood. It is the first book and this one is a picture book. And it tells the story of the Man in the Moon. It has wonderful pictures and the story was wonderful too. Down fall, it's not one for the little ones. But I read it to Monkey and she liked, and it was also interesting enough for the adult that was reading it as well. This is one I bought for our collection. I also got the second book to the series Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King. We haven't finished this one yet as is a chapter book for independent readers. I'll let you know how that one goes.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

November Entertainment

I know the past few weeks have been kind of quiet around here. I've been struggling with some of the books that are in my to be read pile. So I've been working on some of my crafty stuff. Which I hope to be able to show you  in few days. I've also been watching more TV and Netflix stuff. So I thought I give you the highlights.

TV wise I've added a couple of more new shows:

There's the Grimm on NBC. Which is crime based show based on Fairy tales.

And then there's Once Upon a Time on ABC. Where the story book characters are trapped in present day and don't remember that they had a different life.

Well my niece and nephew were down a couple of weekends ago. So my SiL and I took them to see Breaking Dawn part 1 at 3am opening day. It was nice I think there was maybe a dozen people in the theater at that time. And then we got home in time for me to get everybody up and ready for school and work.

I've also been watching the first two seasons of Vampire Dairies.

Again another teen based drama that been sucking me in.

Anybody have any suggestions for other movies to watch? I wanted to take the Monkey to see the new Muppet movie. But I changed my mind, because she kept telling me the Muppet's were boring when ever we saw the preview for it.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Weekend Recap

Well how was everybody's weekend? Ours was really good. Busy but good. We left Wednesday for Des Moines to have Thanksgiving with my brother. We came home on Friday. So the that was about a 4 and 1/2 hour drive back home. Saturday was normal errand day. And then on Sunday it was a trip to Ikea and Mall of America.We picked up this at Ikea:

 It was about 1/2 off. And then we picked up some other miscellaneous stuff. And collected some ideas, for future buys.

When then headed of to MoA for lunch, to use a coupon/gift card that was expiring soon. Then we took to the girls to Nickelodeon Universe, or what used to be Camp Snoopy. The both got to go on some rides. Monkey was even able to go on the roller coaster by herself.

She said it was awesome!

Snack break.

After that we walked through the American Girl store. Someone (Monkey) has been asking for one for about a year and a half. I haven't given in yet. But I'm seriously thinking about it for her Birthday. We will see.

Sorry for any of you that stopped by yesterday for Meal Monday. But I can't  remember much from before we left. MM will be back next week.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Meal Monday

Good Morning!

Is everyone gearing up for a big Turkey dinner later this week? Us we're going away to my brother's house in Iowa for Thanksgiving.

Okay here was my meal plan for last week:
  • Ham steak and Scalloped Potatoes. -- using PW's recipe that I posted about a couple weeks ago
  • Baked Potato soup found here -- I loved it. I got mixed reviews from the peanut gallery though
  • Biscuits and gravy
  • breakfast -- eggs, bacon and hash browns 
  • crock-pot pork chops -- I love this recipe. I know it looks gross but it taste wonderful, even on the pork chops that have been in the freezer a little too long.
  • Taco soup
  • Chicken pot pie -- I use PW recipe from her cookbook. Warning though the is enough chicken mixture for a 9x13 pan. so I would think about 2 pies.
So I had lots of good comfort food last week to eat. What's your favorite comfort food to make?

Monday, November 14, 2011

Meal Monday

Okay we're going for short and sweet here.

So this is what was made last week:
  • Chilli
  • pork loin
  • mac n' cheese with tuna
  • chilli mac
  • frozen pizza
  • santa fe chicken 
  • left over night
So did you try anything new this week?

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Caribou Island review

Caribou Island by David Vann

Type: Adult fiction

Synopsis: Gary and Irene have been married for thirty years and now their marriage is at it's end. They are blaming the other for how things have worked out. But during this time they are building a cabin on a remote island in Alaska.
     We also meet Rhonda and Mark, Gary and Irene's children. Jim who is Rhonda's boyfriend. Monique and Carl a couple that have come to explore Alaska.

Review: I found the book to be very sad and depressing and almost all of the characters to be dislikable or very bitter. The ending left you hanging on how the climax would effect the characters that were still left in this remote area Alaska. I found it to be an interesting read, but not something I enjoyed all that much. There was no light or happiness in the book.

2 out of 5 stars.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Meal Monday

Things have been quite around here. We haven't been doing much of anything. So I found sound new recipes to try this week past week so here we go.

  • spaghetti -- this was something that didn't get made last week
  • mac 'n cheese with tuna -- again something that didn't get made last week and got moved again in favor of some leftovers
  • Chicken Wild Rice soup -- recipe found here. I really like this version, much better then the last recipe for this that I made
  • Frozen Pizza -- I hate to admit it but a planned for this. I need a no fuss quick meal for Halloween
  • Santa Fe chicken -- This got bumped to next week, as I forgot to take it out of the freezer and we ended up going and picking something up.
  • Mediterranean Pork -- recipe found here.
  • Hotdish
 Did you make anything good last week?

Friday, November 4, 2011

My Reading Life review

My Reading Life by Pat Conroy

Type: non-fiction

Synopsis: Pat talks of books and how they have shaped his life.

Review: This is another book that I didn't finish, not that it was a bad book by any means. In fact it was pretty good. I had a hard time deciding not to continue reading it. But it flowed along nicely. Nothing really stood out to me. I probably would have finished it if wasn't a library book, or if I didn't have half a dozen other books sitting at home waiting for me to read. I did in fact stop reading this book to read two other books that I just couldn't wait to read. There was nothing exciting or that enticed me to pick it up instead of watching TV. Would make a great filler book.

2 out of 5 stars

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

The Rose Garden Review

The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley

Type: fiction

Synopsis: After her sister's death Eva returns to Cornwall, a place where she spent her childhood summers. Trying to find a place where she can call home. Some how she finds herself jumping back and forth in time, from her present time to 1715.

Review:  I loved this book. I finished it in just over 24 hours. It takes for all the things I love to read about: other places, other times, some danger/adventure, a little bit of magic and toss in some romance for good measure. Seem to make a wonderful book for me. This is a pretty light read, though. 

5 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

October Best of Kid Books

We didn't get through a whole lot of kid books this month. I know we read but not a lot of them stood out. Some were just read because we needed something short. On the plus side Squirm who is now 2 and half, has decided she likes to be read to at bedtime. Granted it mean crawling into her bed with her and reading, as she doesn't like sitting still long enough to be cuddle up with a book in the living room. She also likes looking at book in bed when she supposed to be going to sleep. So come morning time there is often a dozen books or so in bed with her. Can't blame her I like going to bed with a book too.

This is one of the books that did stand out for me this month. ZooZical by Judy Sierra and illustrated by Marc Brown. In brief its about what the zoo animals get up to during the long, boring winter time.

I liked it a lot. The pictures were cute and the story read like a poem.

So did you have any books that you or your kids enjoyed this month? I'm always looking for books to read with the girls.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Meal Monday

Good Morning! How was your weekend?

So we had a poor week last week. So this was a meal plan, using lots of things from the freezer or what we had on hand.

  • lasagna -- which I had made a double of the week before and froze
  • pork loin and fixed up mashed potatoes -- pork loin I had in the freezer from a buy on get one free deal, and the mashed potatoes were a left over that I spruced up with sour cream and cheese.
  • tuna hot dish
  • eggs and sausages -- another freezer find
  • ham steak and scalloped potatoes -- had the ham steak in the freezer from when Hubby bought ham from the butcher shop. Scalloped potatoes recipe from PW found here.
  • spaghetti -- this got moved in favor leftovers
  • mac n' cheese with tuna -- this got moved in favor of grill tuna melts and grilled cheese sandwiches

See nothing real special but that's how we rolled this week. What do come up with for meal on a poor week?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Erak's Ransom review

Erak's Ransom by John Flanagan

Type: young adult, adventure, fantasy?

Synopsis: This is book 7 in the Ranger's Apprentice series. Timeline wise though it come between book 4 and 5. Will is at the end of his time as Halt's apprentice. And they are off on a new adventure to help their friend Erak, who has been taken hostage.

Review: I really like this series of books. They are a nice little adventure series, with knights and rangers and what not. This book would have been a lot better as the 5th book in the series, where it fits in the timeline. There is no worry about the characters because you know that the they all come out at then end, because they were in the previous books or at least mentioned. Still I really enjoyed reading it. 

3.75 out of 5 stars.

Monday, October 24, 2011

meal Monday

How was your weekend? We had a fairly quite one. The Hubby worked some OT Friday night and Saturday, so we made it a quite weekend.

Here's what was on my meal plan last week:
  • lasagna
  • roasted chicken
  • Chicken spaghetti -- I used the left over roasted chicken. This one was from PW cookbook, will have to say I like the recipe that I got from Paula Deens magazine better
  • pizza 
  • red bean and rice
  • hamburger rice
  • french toast
I also made a treat last weekend. Peanut Butter Brownie cups recipe found here. They came out pretty good. Definitely will make them again.

See nothing special. But it was good. Anybody try anything new this past week. I'm on the hunt for some new recipes.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

What I've been watching.

Well it's been a fairly quite week her. The Monkey has 3 days off of school this week. But she's off to daycare to play with all her friends there, that she hasn't seen much of since school started. We've had some interesting messages from the Boy. More on that later, once things get settled. Other than that, I haven't been reading a lot this week. But there has been a lot of TV watching going on.

Well I finished watching this:
I absolutely loved it. And I can't wait for season two to start here in the US on January 8th.

We've caught up on through season 3 of Fringe. But won't be watching the current season on TV, we'll wait until next fall and watch the whole season all in a row.

Here are some of my favorite new series that started this Fall.

Revenge which is on ABC.

2 Broke Girls which is on CBS, it is funny.

And we have The Secret Circle on CW. Diffidently a teenage drama, witches and what not. But still good.

So have you found any new shows that you're loving?

Monday, October 17, 2011

Meal Monday

So did everyone have a good weekend? Make anything tasty?

So here was my meal plan for last week:
  • pork roast
  • Shepard's pie (tell you in a little bit how I make my Shepard's pie)
  • ham and bean salad - got this out of an old Real Simple magazine. We did not like it. I thought the taste was okay but nobody else did. I thought the chick pea's were too hard.
  • split pea soup
  • breakfast burritos
  • out to eat on Thursday (we had conferences at school)
 Shepard's Pie
So my Shepard's Pie recipe isnt' really a recipe at all just a keep how to that seems to always produce excellent results.

  1. take the leftover roast and cut into bit size pieces
  2. mix in left over gravy and place into a casserole dish.
  3. top with veggies (leftover or frozen)
  4. top with leftover mashed potatoes
  5. And then finally top with some cheese.
  6. bake until heated through.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

City of Glass Review

City of Glass by Classandra Clare

Type: Young Adult, Fantasy, paranormal

Synopsis: Clary and Jace and Simon are still trying to deal with all the new changes in their lives. Jace is trying to protect Clary by leaving her behind. And the Cleve is on the brink of war.

Review: So far my favorite book out of the series. So many of the ends are coming to together. Lots of emotions going on.

5 out of 5 stars.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Sink Reflections review

Sink Reflections by Marla Cilley

Type: self-help, cleaning, organizing

Synopsis: Marla helps us set up routines and to take baby-steps to clean and organize our homes.

Review: Good thoughts for most of this. I only read about a third of the book and just scanned through the rest. All of the info can be found on her website. Which is why I'm giving the book such a low rating. 

1 out of 5 stars

Monday, October 10, 2011

Meal Monday

So here was what was on the menu last week.
  • Potato and Dumpling soup -- posted about here
  • Ham dinner
  • Texas bean bake (recipe found here) -- I cut the ketchup down to 1 cup and cut out the 1/4c of sugar, and still found it a little too sweet. Will need to do some more doctoring.
  • french toast -- this got bumped, I wasn't hungry and the kids wanted cereal. I know not the best dinner, oh well!
  • ham and black eyed pea salad -- this also got bumped as some of the ingredients got used for other things.
  • Shrimp Scampi
  • baked turkey taquitos found here -- these were alright, Hubby and Monkey liked them. They were missing something, I'm just not sure what.
So what are you making this week?

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Weekend Eye Candy

Since it's the weekend, and I have nothing to show for myself. I thought I would share some recent internet finds with you.

First is this crafting blog. Some quilting, some needle work. Very pretty:

Then this cottage that I'm loving. Go here to see pics.

And then check out this house.

Well I hear my laundry calling me. Hope you have a good rest of the weekend.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

The Iron Daughter review

The Iron Daughter by Julie Kagawa

Type: Fantasy, Young Adult

Synopsis: Book 2 of the Iron Fey series. After learning she's the daughter of the Summer King and defeating the Iron King in the last book, Meghan is back and trying to deal with everything she's learn. She's trying to deal with her new feelings for the Winter Prince and someone is taking over as the new Iron King that needs to be dealt with. Old friends and old enemies are back.

Review: I find this to be a real intriguing series. I started this book Saturday afternoon during nap time and I finished it before I went to bed. But then I'm a sucker for these types of books. Some are better then others.

4 out of 5 stars. It seems I'm on a streak of fairly good books. I don't think it will last. I started a new one last night and didn't even enjoy the intro. And I've heard great reviews on it. I'll let you know how it goes.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Meal Monday

Good Monday Morning!

I've posted before about meal planing so I won't bore you with that again. So I thought I would stop by and share what my meal plan was for last week.

  • soup from the freezer -- Homemade Chicken Noodle
  • taco salad
  • spaghetti
  • cheese stuffed pasta -- The Monkey loved this, she had seconds and wanted more.
  • hamburgers
  • grilled cheese and tomato soup
  • shrimp scampi recipe found here -- This got bumped to the this week, we had a leftover night instead.

I still don't like to meal plan, but mostly that's because I have a hard time thinking of what to make.

Well I hope everybody off to a good start of the week.

Friday, September 30, 2011

City of Ashes Review

City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare

Type of Book: young adult, paranormal, fantasy

Synopsis: Book 2 of the Mortal Instruments series. This book picks about a week or so after the end of City of Bones. Clary and her friends are trying to deal with all the changes in their lives and new ones that keep coming their way. Jace is under investigation and that add all sorts of new twists.

Review: Still loving this series. I'll have to put it on hold though for a while till I can get book 3. The only down fall of it is that the books lead right in to the next. So you finish the book and there isn't much closer. I there is some for what ever big disaster that they are trying to battle but the story just stops and waits for the next installment. Make one kind of desperate to read the next one.

4 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

City of Bones Review

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Type of Book: young adult, paranormal, fantasy

Synopsis: Book 1 of The Mortal Instruments series. Clary grew up your average teen but learns things aren't what the always appeared to be. Clary's single mom goes missing and she learns she's part of the this other world that she keeps catching glimpses of. She learns that werewolves, vampires, demons, fay, and angles aren't just fairy tales, there real.

Review: Loved it. What a surprising twist at the end. I'm glad that I decided to buy these books to keep in my collections. I already started the second book in the series. I've also heard rumors that there might be a movie in the works.

4 out of 5 stars

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Not just reading

I know, three book reviews in a row. And well if you think all I've been doing is reading, well it's partial true. But I have been doing other things too.

There has been a lot of  TV/disc watching going on too. The Hubby and I have been catching up on episodes of Fringe. We re watched parts of season 2 that we missed and on are on to season 3. I've also been watching last winter's Downton Abbey that aired on Masterpiece Theater, which I believe will be season 1. I've heard that season 2 is airing on the BBC. Other than that it's been catching some new shows that are starting this fall and the season premiers.

But while we've been watching these I've been knitting. It's slow going, as I get distracted by what I'm watching quite easily. Mostly I've been working on these socks:

Pattern: Hermione's Everyday socks. Which I'm loving because it's simple to remember and pick up but yet not just st st. Yarn is Knit One Crochet Too Ty-Dy sock. Which was in my stash. I had originally picked it up for a dropped stitch scarf, but it didn't look right.

I've also been work on this sweater. Not much to show. But I love how the pattern is written. No more sticky notes falling off and getting lost.

This has been lingering on my sewing table for months now. But have finally started to sew the blocks together.

And finally my other knitting project that you won't hear about often:

I started this crazy afghan. I'm just using scrap sock yarn (fingering weight). Needless to say I don't have a whole lot of scrap yarn right now. So it's already on hold until I can add a couple new colors to the jar. This one is going to years, to get done but I'm okay with that. But if you have any scrap fingering weight yarn that you'd be willing to part with or know someone who does send them my way.

Well I hope everyone is having a great weekend. I off to get ready to go out with my hubby.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Redheaded Princess Review

The Redheaded Princess by Ann Rinaldi

Type of book: young adult, historical fiction

Synopsis: About Princess Elizabeth I from the age of nine until she becomes queen.

Review: A nice quick and easy read. There are lots of books and movies out there on this subject right now. Not one you want if you want to get into a lot of details.

Growing up Ann Rinaldi was one of my favorite authors. The fact still holds. You can definently tell it was written for an early young adult though.

3.5 out of 5 stars

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Reading Promise book review

The Reading Promise by Alice Ozma

Type of book: non-fiction, reading, life

Synopsis: A girl and her dad challenge themselves to read every night for 100 nights. The then continue until he drops her off for college, 3218 nights later.

Review: I liked the thought of this book. But to tell the truth it was more about her relationship with her dad, which was okay. I just wished it had been more about the books that they had read. Some of it was hard to follow. The time line didn't always flow nicely.

It was okay to read, I started this back in June when it came out. I put it aside for library books, that were hot on my reading list. But I did go back and finish it. The beginning and the end were good. The middle kind of lost me.

2 out of 5 stars

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Wilder Life review

The Wilder Life by Wendy McClure

Synopsis: Author goes back and re-reads the  Little House series of books that she loved as a child. And the book follows her obsession following this.

Review: I had heard lots of good things about this book and had been really excited to read. To be honest I did not finish this book. It was a short check out from the library and I just couldn't get into it that much that I wanted to put myself back on the waiting list for it. 

Growing up I was a huge Laura fan. And I still am. I have often thought of going to some of the "Laura sights" like Wendy does in her search. Wendy seemed like she was lost and looking for something.After reading 2/3 of it I still wasn't sure what she was searching for and I'm not to sure she was either. I couldn't relate to how she was telling this story. The journey she took both in the travel and research has so much potential, but it just falls short.

2 of 5 stars.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hello Again

Happy Summer to all. I know it's been a while since I've come to visit. The truth is I haven't really felt like it. Actually I even took a break from reading most blogs too.

But I think I'm back now. I probably won't post much or often but I like to share with you. And well if nothing else it's a place to write down some of my thoughts. I think part of the break was I was feeling over whelmed by how much other people do. I know it's just how they portray it but it still makes me feel like a slacker. I looked the other day and I was following around 200 blogs. No wonder I wasn't getting anything done. So I went through and deleted a bunch of them from my list. Now it's not that they aren't great blogs, it's just that they don't talk to me or inspire me like I would like them too. The goal was to cut back my list in half. After reviewing every blog in my list it is now down to 66. That's with a few iffy ones. I know I'll come across new ones to add and I might even go back to some of the one that I deleted. But for now I have several that I really enjoy and not a lot that are just okay.

What have I been doing? Nothing much. Some reading, I started a new knitting project. A sweater for me. I'm slowly working on it. Mostly it get worked on when I'm in front of the TV.

We have some big changes coming up with my family. I'll share them with you once things become a little more clear.

Other then that I'm in the middle of a kid free week. I had hopes of getting a lot of things done. But none of that has come into play. That's okay though, I've enjoyed the extra time with the hubby and some time with just us and the Boy. The only two things that would make it even better is time off of work and some outside furniture so I could sit on the deck and read.

Well that's all I have for now.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Not Much

Well hello. I know it's been a bit. But really there hasn't been much to share. Or really I haven't felt like doing much. So in truth I haven't. It's just been the bare minimum around here. But well today I got a little somewhere on my cleaning. I thought I share.

The hubby hung these that we got at Ikea a few weeks ago.

I'm liking them a lot. But I think I want another spice rack above that one. I hadn't planned on putting the knives there. But my input wasn't asked for until after he had hung them. I really wasn't going to argue at that point. Just glad to have and have it up.

Now on this next one I wish a had remembered to take a before picture. But if you can image: the bottom shelf had baskets with the kids' color and crafting supplies, the middle shelf had my cook books and all the recipe print outs that I haven't tried or copied into my note book to keep. and well the top had some of what is there now plus a bunch of random things (it's the catch all place for when we clear the table off to eat).

The shelf I've had for 9 years now and I got it only because someone left it when the moved out of house before we moved in. But I have something on my list of things for my hubby to make that will replace this. I'm hoping that will happen before the end of summer. I know that seems like a long ways out, but I have 2 other projects for him to make before this. And well it's the case of time and money (no money and lots of time vs. some money and no time).

We also celebrated someone turning 2 a couple of weekends ago.

And well I listed my first item to sell on Craigslist. I hope it goes.

I hope everyone has a great week. And here's hoping the we will continue to have so spring weather. I'm tired of snow.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Finished Bunk Beds

Well  I finally finished something. Well the Hubby helped on this one, in fact my step-son and nephew also helped.

We were originally going to build a loft/fort bed. But we changed our minds and went with classic bunk beds.

The girls love it. Now on to the next build project: Dresser for the girls. They also will be done in this purple color.


Monday, March 14, 2011

New Meal Monday

Do you meal plan?

I do. It's a love/hate thing. I love the money that it saves me at the grocery store and the fact that I know I have enough food for the week. I hate trying to come up with meals to put on the list for the week. And I'm so tempted to make the same things all the time. But there are almost always something new to try on my list.

Since I have a hard time finding new things to make, I figure there's a bunch of us out there that could use an idea or two. Or find out what out there didn't make the cut.

 So last week here was the meal plan:
  • Potato and Dumpling soup
  • Pork Roast
  • Quasidias
  • leftovers
  • tuna salad
  • chow main
Well there were only one new meal on my list. The soup.

The Potato and Dumpling soup recipe I found here. I made half a recipe and probably could easy get 2 meals plus leftover for my family of 4. I loved it. It tasted great even though I forgot to add the salt, pepper and parsley. This one will definitely make it's way into my cookbook or recipe notebook.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


This is what I worked on when my sister was here. I had about 12 blocks left to make and then worked on the lay out.

This is about half the quilt top laid out. I ran of room and had to pick up the first half and then lay out the second half.

I'm making this out of some vintage sheet squares that I had won and an Ikea sheet. I'm very excited about this quilt and can't wait for it to be done. If I did my math right, it should be close to a full size quilt when it's done. I'm hoping to put it on my bed. If I ever get it done. I've been wanting to craft, but just haven't had the energy to do it. I've been so tired by the time the girls go to bed, that I haven't been getting much done. Maybe I'll get something done today as I am home with a sick kid. Even though she insists that she is all better and is fine to go to school.

Here's hoping that your day is starting out better then mine.
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Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I've been reading.

Well I've gotten sidetracked off the spring cleaning. I did start the bathroom and well there not much left to do. Just need to take down the light fixer and wash it, then just a quick sort of under the sink and then take measurements for a shelf. Then that will be done. But unless I work on it during the week, it won't get done until next weekend. This past weekend my SIL and her kids were over. And this weekend will be crafting weekend #2 with my sister. I got one project I really want to make some progress on. So here hopeing.

But if I haven't been crafting and I haven't been cleaning, what have I been doing? READING!!!

More specificly I've been reading this series:

Outlander (Outlander, #1)

Now I read the first book of this series back in July. I liked. I put the next book on my to read pile. And then got caught up with reading other things. Now in the past 3 weeks. I have read #2 and #3 and the graphic novel. And well the graphic novel is the only one that I think I could have skipped. It tells part of the story from the first book, just from a different point of view. Well I would be reading more of this series right away if it wasn't for the fact I have 2 borrowed books on my nightstand waiting for me to read.

We've also started working on a bunk bed for The Monkey and Squirms. Not what I originally wanted but I think it will work out better for them. The boys made it last weekend. Once it gets home I get to fill in the holes and paint it. Agian not the color I wanted. I was going for a nice teal/turquios color but Monkey wanted purple. And since she's the one sleeping in it. Her voted out ranked mine.

Now that the end of winter is in sight, what plans do you have? Are you starting any new projects?

Thursday, February 10, 2011


It's cold and well there's not much more to say about that. It was -11 this morning when I left for work. I think I'm still cold.On the plus side by Monday we should have a 40 degree increase in high temp for the day from what it is today. We will see. I'm hoping.

I don't think I've ever really minded winter as much as have lately. But I was talking to a claims adjuster at work today who lives in Sioux Falls. We're thinking the older we get the less we do outside when it's cold, the more we dislike winter. I used to do stuff out side all the time during the winter. Now it's only what I have to do.

Well I did get the living room cleaned on Sunday. Not that anyone can tell the difference. We got rid of a lot less then what I wanted to. One shopping bag of baby toys and maybe a dozen movies and video games. But every thing got wiped down or vacuumed off. And five things got put on a project list. I would love to get new furniture for my living room. The stuff I have is 2nd time hand me downs. It's 23 years old. It needs to be replaced. The problem is I don't think what  I want to do will fit into my living room. So it's taking measurements, and making drawing to see what will fit. And well furniture cost money. So I'm trying to hold off as long as possible. I would rather hold off until we get into a house or find something that I like that would work any most any space.

This weekend I think it will be the bathroom's turn to be spring cleaned. This should be another space that's fairly easy to get through.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Early Spring Cleaning

Good Morning all. How has your weekend been going? Ours has been pretty quiet so far. Just did a couple of errands yesterday. Now today, hopefully will be different. I hope to crack the whip and get some house chores done.

It is all quiet here still, everybody still sleeping or just laying there playing quietly. Which is amazing. But my mind isn't. I have idea's rolling around in there like crazy. So I decide to stop by and spill some of them out to you.

I'm a horrible housekeeper. Most of the time I feel that I just barely do enough to make it not gross. Most nights the only thing that gets done is hopefully the dishes. Now I know what I see out in Blogland, is what people choose to share. That their houses are not always perfect. But when I look around my apartment, I don't see much of promise of it looking good.

So on that note, I've decided that the months of February and March are going to be spent in doing a deep clean. Just taking it one room or part of a room at a time. The goal is to clean and minimize some of our junk. Then make a list of all the things that I would like to do for that room at this time. Then when we have the time or the funds to slowly start working on those things. Then if I can get myself through this process now and get myself motivated I'll go through and do a cleaning, toss and re-evaluate my lists again in September and October.

So on top of regular chores, I'm starting with the living room today. I feel this will be the easiest room to do.

Well here good luck to whatever you have planned for the day

Sunday, January 30, 2011

January Crafting Weekend

After my last post I got to thinking of all the things I wanted to get done craft wise or with my home. There are so many times that I plan on working on something after the girls get to bed, after I get this chore done. By the time I actually sit down to work on something I'm so tired. So since I can't afford to go on a crafting retreat, I would create my own.

I called my sister to see if she was game. We decide that we would take one day or weekend a month to get together and craft or work on a project of some sort. So last weekend I went up to her house on Saturday night. Then on Sunday morning we got up and I crafted.

I got four Lizzy Dish towels done. I also started on potholders, but gave up on them once I started arguing with my sisters sewing machine. It drew first blood. Time for something else.

I also brought along some of my blocks for my Sweet Pea Quilt. Most of the stitching on these were done. But I recently decided to stitch the flower block instead of appliqueing a flower on. I also decide to skip the circles on the dot fabric as well. What do you think? Me I'm liking it.

I know not a lot done for a days worth of crafting. But it's a start. Now in February my sister is coming over to my house. Hopefully by then I'll have my Lizzy Dish potholders done as well. The Lizzy Dish stuff was going to be for gifts. But I changed my mind. I thought I need something cheerful for my kitchen. They don't match what I have, but I like them anyways. They are so bright and cheerful.

Well hope everyone is have a good weekend. This weekend The only thing that got done, was that we picked up lumber for one of my other projects. Which by the way I changed to a different one.
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