Pinterest fail: shaving cream Easter eggs

Seemed like a great idea, but then it just wasn’t…

Kids had a great time, but also made a huge mess, and the eggs looked like maybe I had thought about misting them with color.

At the end of the day this is what happened to our eggs…

. yep, the age old color tablet dyes. Tallman answered my text of failure and brought some home with him after work.

Inspired by

pinterest shaving cream eggs *apparently pinterest has changed how you can add pins.

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What ever happened to the holidays?

I am just a little sick of our new “modern” Christmas craziness.

Frankly, I think the fact that I could buy Christmas decorations before Halloween was over (and the stores were already out of Halloween decor a week before the holiday) stores like Michael’s were opening at 4 pm on Thanksgiving day to start your Christmas shopping, and all of the commercials on the radio that were encouraging me to take out a holiday loan to afford gifts is just to much over the top!

I think the last straw was this week though when I was reading the paper at the diner and saw under the list of affordable gift ideas to give your kids teachers a coffee cup (good affordable idea) filled with a $50 coffee card!  What!  When did it become the norm to spend $60 on a teacher Christmas gift?  What ever happened to a small gift made by the child? A tin of homemade cookies or fudge?  Who has that much money for a teacher gift?  And for all the teachers?  That is insane!

What ever happened to having the Christmas you can afford?  One that won’t put you in to debt?  What happened to saving through the year for the holidays?  Making gifts if you could not afford to buy them?  Giving gifts that mean something and took some time to pick out, wrap up, and some thought instead of throwing gift cards at everyone?  Including your significant others?

I don’t know whats happened to the rest of the country, but in our house we are keeping Christmas real.  We are not taking out loans for gifts, or maxing out our (non-existent) credit cards.  We are making some gifts and buying others, We will not be giving a single person a  gift card or a pile of cash to “go and buy there own gift”.  Teachers will be getting gifts of baked goodness, the postman will most likely be getting the same box of fudge we have made him every year, and grandparents will get something homemade from the kids. Yes, we will buy our parents gifts as well as each other and the little people, but with in reason and with in our budget.  And we are making sure we are doing plenty of other things through the season, the little things that money can’t buy that make the season memorable and make it feel like Christmas; Driving around to see the Christmas lights up on everyone’s houses, wrapping gifts for each other and placing them under the tree,Visiting Santa in the town square, Standing in the cold to watch the annual Christmas parade, going to make Cookies  with the grandma, decorating gingerbread houses and snuggling up on the sofa at night as a family watching all the Christmas movies we can find on Netflix and TV, knowing that my mom will fly in for the holidays to share them with us, that We will go to the Tall Man’s parents house on Christmas eve and wake up Christmas morning to presents from Santa Claus, Coffee and Cocoa, and Cinnamon rolls for breakfast.

Now that is how we do Christmas in our house.  Just like the Tall Man and I did as kids with our families.  And in my mind, this is how Christmas should be…

How NOT to make your Thanksgiving pies

The plan, to make a pumpkin and an apple pie for Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow, today.

step 1 – Procrastinate: Wake up intend to make pies at lunch time.  At lunch time be so busy working and keeping the peace with the handful decide to wait till the afternoon, in the afternoon decide it is to hot from cooking all day and decide to wait till the kids go to bed, play on Facebook and not actually get started on any pie sort of prep till after 8 (when all the stores closed till Friday).  Try to convince Grandma she wants to make the pies, she does not.  Sigh, and get started.

Step 2 – Hardware:  Discover that you only have 1 pie pan that is accessible and the other 4 are all packed away in a box somewhere or other…  So you can only make 1 pie, unless of course you would use a bread or cake pan to make a pie – this idea is vetoed by Grandmother repeatedly.  So decide that you will make a pumpkin pie and serve sliced cinnamon apples  as a side instead of in an apple pie for dessert.  Also decide you will make an apple pie next week for #1 who is going to wake up very disappointed to find no apple pie!

Step 3 – Filling Ingredients: Pull out the can of pumpkin pie mix and read instructions, look for the can of evaporated milk that the can says you need only to discover that you don’t have any, but you do have not 1 but 3 cans of condensed milk.  Consult the internet, no they are not  the same and can not be substituted for one another.  Consult the internet and look for evaporated milk substitutions find buttermilk (which will give finished pie a tangy flavor), half and half (for a rich pie) and all sorts of options using other items you don’t have – powdered milk, soy milk, almond milk, decide to just mix whipping cream and milk and see how it goes.  Realize you have no idea where the mixing bowls are and use a cooking pot instead.

Step 4 – Pie crust recipe: Remember that all the cook books are packed.  Also remember that Tall Man is picky with pie crusts and the only one you have ever made that he truly liked was your great-grandmothers recipe. Ask Grandma for the recipe – shocker she did not bring a copy of it cross-country with her for her visit.  Search email for recipe, finally find it under pie dough (really Grandma?  Dough?  Not crust?).  

Step 5 – Pie crust assembly:  I have all the ingredients, woo hoo!  While opening the can of shorting Tall Man rubs some of it on your nose,  go to retaliate and get scolded by Grandma for bothering him when he’s not feeling well…  Again use a pot to mix the “dough” in.  Realize the pastry cutter is also packed and grab a fork.  Pull out the cutting board to roll out the crust and realize you also have no rolling pin and grab a McDonalds  Shrek drinking glass for the job.  It looks a mess, but it will have to do!!!

Step 6 – Baking: Put the misshapen pie crust in the lone pie pan, dump the filling on the crust – making sure to splash it all down your shirt in the process, and throw it in the oven praying that in 55 minutes you will have a pumpkin pie that looks good enough to eat and tastes good to boot!  (at least you know that the pie crust passes Tall Mans taste test!)

Great Grandmothers pie crust recipe

 

The great stocking challenge of 2012

So a few days before Halloween after all of the costumes were done, I decided that this was the year I was going to make new Christmas stockings, specifically Bucilla felt applique stockings like the one I had as a child.  I told myself it would be no problem to get 7 or 8 of them done before Christmas eve, that I would work on them 1 at a time for a few hours each evening while the Tall Man played video games, or we watched some TV, maybe for a few minutes here or there during #5’s naptime or at Pre-school…  and probably do about 1 a week.

Now almost 4 weeks later, I have just finished the 1st stocking!  Oh, my goodness these things take so. much. time!  I would say I easily put in 80 hours on just one of these things and I wanted to get them all done, I must have been insane, the new goal is to get the boys done this year so Tall man has a stocking and the kids don’t feel left out that he got his first, and to do the girls for next year, so instead of 7, well 8 since everyone felt I needed to do one for Grandma too, the new goal is 3.  Maybe, maybe I can get that done.   But let me get back to telling you about the 1st one  (and the only 1 done so far) and probably the trickiest one to order!

I wanted to get a stocking that fit each persons personality and after finding the perfect stocking for #1, #2, #4 and #5, and Tall Man looking on and picking his own, I was struggling with #3’s, I wanted all the boys to have a Santa on theirs so no one felt left out or that it wasn’t fair, (this came about as I realized that Tall Man and #1 both had Santa’s) and I had seen a stocking that would have been perfect for #3 but couldn’t find it anywhere, everyone was out of stock.  Upon further investigation I found out just why everyone was out of stock, it had been discontinued in 2007…   Ebay however was my savior and I was able to get it.

I started eagerly on the stocking and then realized how long they were going to take.  So even though none of you will probably be doing this exact stocking a few things I realized along the way would be helpful regardless of which one you do.

1st thing is the VERY first thing you need to do is cut out the entire front of the stocking.  The instructions are extremely clear on not to cut out any pieces until it says to, but it never tells you to cut out the stocking front ( I have found this is true on the 2nd stocking I started as well)

The 2nd thing is that polyfill is NOT included, also at least with this one pipe cleaners would be helpful but also not included.

and the 3rd things are instructions specific to this I had an extra piece that I still have no idea where it went, I was never told to put Rudolfs nose on,  and I was short on black and blue embroidery floss ( by a lot  not just an inch or two…)  I used feet more than I was given…

Also it is good to know you are given plenty of sequins, I lost one the 1st night working on it and panicked that I would be short, I think Tall Man and I spent a half hour looking for it worried that the kit had included an exact amount.

Voila!  #3’s new stocking!!!

 

Love this type of stocking but don’t want to spend all your free time making one?  Etsy has a plethora available if you have the bucks…

waiting impatiently…

for the title paperwork on the new house to be done, apparently it didn’t get ordered when it should have so now we have to wait for it…

My house is packed up, i can’t really clean around the boxes and have no projects to do, since we are leaving and the Halloween costumes are all done, so in my insanity I decided to make Bucilla felt applique stockings for all!!!  Insane right?  Well after spending an evening on Amazon sorting through the options I could not find a suitable one for #3, and hit ebay for a discontinued pattern…  1 left, so I ordered it an now I am just waiting for it to arrive…

See I had a Bucilla stocking as a kid and loved it, and now that the handful and I get to do Christmas, I want to have them for my kids as well…

Wonder if I will actually be able to gt 5? 7? or 8? done before the holidays and when I will finally get to move…

Heirloom Clutter and design flaws

I love a clean house.  And by clean I mean one with out a lot of clutter, knick knacks and stuff.  I am a big believer in the idea that everything in your home should be there for a reason – either that you love it, it is useful, or a design element.  Unfortunately  I have never had a home like that.  You see I have inherited clutter.  No I am not talking about the kids toys and things, while those may be messy and take a lot of room, they are are useful and I ( well, the kids) want it there and with out what would they do all day?  Nope, I am talking about inherited stuff.

See when most people inherit stuff the party that has left it to them is no longer here, and that was how I got my stuff to, however my mother sees everything that my father had (yes they were divorced) as hers, and takes it as a personal affront for every item I get rid of.  She tells me how they spent years collecting those items, how much they cost and where they got them.  So I am pretty much guilted into keeping it around.  and I have, for 15 years I have held onto stuff and found places for it in my home to appease her.  But really?  Most of them are things I would never have bought.  I don’t like them, they are not my style and it’s just more stuff to clean and move.   And yes of course I am taking them all with me.  But this time I am not going to force myself to incorporate them into my decor.

Nope, I will lovingly place them and boxes and hove them in the attic safe and sound to be passed down to my kids one day as she wants them to be.  An antique highchair that I have not used for a single one of the handful ( and was never used for me) that they purchased many years ago.  A early 1900’s bouncing horse that I was not allowed to play with as a child for fear I would damage it and therefore neither have any of the handful.  Clocks and clocks and clocks that don’t work.  Random china pieces that were my great great great great? grandmothers?, dozens of wood ducks my grandfather carved, and so on.

I understand my mother and father loved antiquing, these are things they spent their lives together accumulating, but because of that I have never been able to do that same thing myself with my own partner.  I have carried my parents baggage into each new home and not had room to make new memories and a truly a home of my own.  Now I know that the Tall Man says he doesn’t care how I decorate the new place, but in order for it to feel like it is his too, he should get some say and if I put all my parents stuff everywhere, they simply isn’t room for that.

So, if I don’t see it fitting into my design or want it displayed proudly it will be stored safely for the grandchildren, now don’t get me wrong, everything is not going into storage, just the stuff I wouldn’t buy on my own or that doesn’t have a sentimental reason to be displayed.  Great grandma Tayloe’s Aunt Jemima cookie jar will always be in the china hutch and the only desk I will ever use is the roll top my father used every day of his life, but the doll collection that no one can play with much less touch?  It will be kept safe in acid free paper in storage.  I think it’s time I finally made a home I want to live in…