Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Well hello there! I'M BACK!

Make sure you check back often for some cool links, articles and photos. In the mean time check out my fb page for some great deals and giveaways!

Here's today's trivia......

How old was the oldest woman on record to get pregnant? First person with the exact guess gets a 30% discount! NO CHEATING!!!!! Be fair!

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Hello all of my blessings! I know it's been a while. Awe heck. I probably lost you all!  :D   it's all good. I understand. I've just got lots on my plate right now and focusing on my FB page, my son, my house, etc....

BUT! I wanted to share that over at she's having a $100 giveaway to Joann's! BIG WOOT!!! Do you know how much material I could buy for ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS!?!?!?!?! Head on over and enter! 

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Fire Starters

I love my son. No questions. But plain and simple, doing crafty stuff is more of a girls thing. I love that S is really into art and making crafty stuff but trying to find boy crafts is not the easiest.

When I display or sell at fairs and my son is with me that weekend he tags along. Willingly!  I embrace this time with my son and use it as a teaching/learning tool. He’s eight and still has a hard time grasping the value of a dollar and that it’s not just a piece of paper in mom’s wallet! I use to be able to give him a penny for picking up his toys or a dime for feeding the dog. That doesn’t fly anymore. So. Now that he’s getting more into crafting and I’m teaching him how to earn a buck or two I use these craft fairs as a way to teach both. Throw in recycled crafts and I’ve just hit 5 targets with one stone: 1. creating  2. earning money  3. counting money  4. socialization with strangers  5. recycling/upcycling/repurposing

Last time I showed you how we use old crayons to make new ones. This week I’m going to show you how to make fire starters. Trust me. This is THE BOMB for repurposing old crayons and wax! These aren’t as fun as the good ol can of lighter fluid (yeah. I might be a bit of a piro myself!) but they’re much safer &  better on the environment. Plus they’re cool to make!

Cardboard egg cartons
Old crayons or wax
Dryer lint or wood shavings

Refer to the last post on making a double boiler for melting wax.

Cut the egg cartons into sections of 2.

Fill each section with saw dust or dryer lint. Be generous! (even more than I'm showing below!)


Pour the melted wax on top & let cool. Don't worry about sprinkling sawdust on top. Most of mine fell off anyway.

From here: these can be done! But S and I take it a bit further and use half a sheet of newspaper to wrap each one. This makes them a bit more presentable for our purpose of selling. Plus if you use wood shavings it contains the loose shavings in the newspaper. 

Arrange kindling (minus any newspaper you might normally use)  under bigger logs.  Put this fire starter in the middle of the kindling, making sure it is easily accessible. 

Simply take your lighter and light this up-cycled creation on fire.  Grab some marshmallows & enjoy!

This also works for charcoal grills when your charcoal needs a little help. I know. I know. Lighter fluid is more fun but this helps get your kids involved and uses up materials that would otherwise get thrown away.

Happy Blessings!

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Wow. It's the 21st of Feb already. I do apologize for lack of posts. One of my weaknesses is time management. Maybe that'll be next week's post!

So ... on to the second half of the up-cycled crayons.

old crayons (we get ours from friends and teachers)
old pot (rummage sale!)
soup cans
old towels or pot holders (rummage sale!)
hard candy molds (or muffin tin with or without paper liners)
    -i tried the molds at the local craft shop and the melted wax is too hot for these. The wax doesn't melt a hole in the bottom but it distorts the shape of the mold a bit so make sure the mold you buy says hard candy mold or high heat mold.

Here are a few of my supplies. The bottle on the left is agave, not brandy!!

What To Do:

1. Peel the paper off of the crayons. This can be left to the little fingers or what I did was slice down the paper with an xacto knife. Not as easy as it sounds, but quicker. PLEASE don't slice thru your fingers. Trust me it hurts.

2. When we peel the paper off, we separate the colors at this point. I have lots of old containers I store them in but they do melt quicker if they're in smaller pieces. If you have a little tyke that wants to help, here's where they can be a big helper. Put the crayons in a paper bag or zip lock bag. Grab a hammer. Head outside & let your little one smash the crayons as much as they want! This teaches them more than you can imagine.

3. Now your turn! Take the soup can and pinch one side to make a spout. Sorry I didn't get a picture of how to do this but you can figure it out from the one below. This step isn't necessary but trust me: it'll make your life easier!

4. Pick your colors that you want to pour for your first molds & dump each color into a separate can.

5. Put as many of the containers that will fit into your old pot as possible. Fill the pot with water until it reaches about 1/4 up the bottom of the soup cans. Poof: instant double boiler! Be careful not to spill water into the soup cans. It won't hurt the melting crayons but wax & water don't mix.

6. Turn on the burner & wait. Uh. I hate waiting.....!

7. When the crayons are all melted (ok not all of them will probably melt but a majority) take your old pot holders & gently pour some of the melted crayon color into the mold. I use a second old rag to wipe the water off the bottom of the can so it doesn't dribble in the mold. If you want to mix colors, leave room for a second or third color.

8. Let dry & pop out! These make awesome valentines gifts, easter egg suprises, halloween treats or just because presents for the little neighbors!

Remember the wax is hot so pouring the wax should be left up to the adult. But you can include them in most of the other steps. Have fun!

*quick tip* don't bother melting the fancy crayons like the ones with glitter or washable crayons. They don't melt very well & just end up making more of a mess.

*quick tip* if you dribble water in the mold, it creates an air bubble in the crayon.

*quick tip* I highly recommend investing in a pampered chef can opener. It cuts a smooth edge on the can so you don't cut your fingers.

*quick tip* when pouring the wax, I recommend grabbing the can by the top of the lip & not around the base. The base will be moist from the steam & somewhat slippery.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012


Re-purposing. Recycling. Reusing.

I'm a thrifter. I buy from them and sell at them. I probably save too much but I'm not a hoarder. Trust me. I watch those hoarding shows. I'm not that! I use my old socks with holes in them as dusting rags. I reuse my dryer sheets a few times to get the most use out of them. I reuse glass jars to store fabric swatches, buttons or paperclips.

Heck I've even gotten my son into the swing of things! He hates it when I put old pieces of paper in the recycle bin.  "Mom, you can use that corner to write notes on. Don't throw that out!" 

Yup. That's my boy!!

He even has his own line of recycled products. Like me, he loves to craft so I'm always looking for boy crafts. Harder than it sounds!  So instead of making little trinkets, I teach him how to take old things and make them into something new and cool!  RE-PURPOSING!

Plus, any money he makes at our craft shows, he puts half in savings & he gets to spend the other half. I'm encouraging charity giving and will discuss that next time.

Our first project we did was to make new crayons out of old ones.

And this is where i pause the posting.....

Yup. I'm accident prone. I truly believe it runs in the family. Right mom?! Well, about 2 weeks ago, I took a digger head first into the snow-slash-frozen ground ..... while sledding ...... and tore the ligaments & muscles in my neck.  Can you touch your chin to your chest? Ok now bend down so your chin is almost between your boobs. Now touch your chin to your chest. Ouch.

I'll admit. I'm not in the best shape of my life. I just started running/walking to loose some extra 'baggage' and I have Jillian Michaels 'torture' dvd's I was going to start doing again to stretch & grow my muscles. Is that called ironic? Or just murphy's law.....

It's a slow healing process. I've torn ligaments in my ankle & was in a walking cast for 6 weeks. No cast for the neck. I'm finally back to work full-time but today I'm very sore. Left work early & haven't moved from the couch but only to let the dog out & feed her. She doesn't understand.

This is how I felt today

So back to my *pause*. I'll take pics tonight as I can & tomorrow and finish the post on how to make recycled crayons .... AND fire starters!

But for now, count your blessings, be thankful for your health and Happy Blessings!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


I love going home for Christmas. My parents are retired now and offered to come to my house 2 states away. I immediately put a hault to those plans. You see, for me, going home doesn't mean just visiting my parents. It means a vacation. A place to escape my normal life and go back in time to where I grew up. I get to see the same stop sign at the same intersection. I get to see the same family town grocery store that's filled with the aroma of the butcher shop in the back.


Missouri River at Mobridge, SD. I remember the water being up past the dirt road.

Life is different on the prairie. At least where I grew up. It's a town of 400 people where everybody really does know your name. Where people know where you're going and they know what's wrong when you don't show up to work or school the next day.


Small storm cloud over the prairie.

It's also a town where everyone looks out for everyone else. A young mother passed away a few years ago, leaving behind a few kids and a distraught husband on a farm. Those that could, helped out on the farm feeding the cattle and doing normal farm chores. Those that couldn't brought meals to the kids and father. It's just what they do.


Pile of junk at the back of the acre on my parents land. As a kid, we use to build forts and play with this stuff.

It's a farm community where everyone waves at you when you drive by, whether they know you or not.  It's just what they do. It's not what they're sopose to do, but what they just do.

This tree has been there since I was a young child. There's a small stock dam (pond) right by the tree we'd use to go ice skating on.
When I go home, I get back to my roots. I start waving again. And on my drive back to Wisconsin, I count how many cars I can get to wave back at me. It's unfortunate that I can count on my fingers how many people wave back.


I planted this tree in the 3rd grade when I won it for a poster drawing contest for Arbor day. It's huge now! Amazing how time flies like this.

I love going home. I love that the few businesses shut down after 5:30 and if you don't have your groceries for your Sunday dinner, by Saturday at 6, you'll have to travel to the next closest town 45 miles away.

Fence on the way into town.

I can't say it's serene. Or peaceful. Or God's vacation spot. Heck, it's even been 18 yrs since I've lived there. Yes. Houses have changed. People have moved. Cell phone towers have found their way to the dead spots. But I still love going home to 'live' on the prairie for a week. Where stars are in abundance and the Northern Lights dance on the horizon. Hoot owls sit on top of your light pole and wake you up in the middle of the night. And where the lul of the sheep can be heard in the distance.


Sunset overlooking Flat Creek: on my dad's homestead property.

“The happiest people don’t have the best of everything, they just make the best of everything they have.”

♥ Happy Blessings! ♥


My father and my son walking on the homestead looking for rocks.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Household tips

I have this really cool project I wanted to share a tutorial with you but I guess life had other plans this weekend. (on bed rest till my neck heals so no sewing for a little bit)

This whole blog thing is new to me but I'm definitely enjoying it! Right now it's kinda scattered: just writing things I want to share. While laying up this week I'm trying to come up with goals of what I want to accomplish with my blog so I hope you'll stick around!

In the mean time, I got some inspiration for this week's post from a new show that debuted this week called "Revolution" on ABC. Here are some tips taken from their first show, and some of my own.

I'd love to hear some of your tips that work for you!

baking soda & a raw potato take rust off of pots & pans
baby oil (or vegetable oil) takes off store stickers on your new items
smooth peanut butter gets 'rid' of scratches in cd's & dvd's. spread a thin layer on starting in the middle and working your way out, then buff off.
to clean and sharpen a coffee grinder, grind a cup or so of rice
boil a bowl of water in the microwave for about 5 minutes then immediately wipe out the stuck on food
use empty toilet paper rolls to start seedlings, then plant the whole thing outside in your garden
WD40 takes off tar splatters on your car
keep a pretty basket on top of your dryer. When you empty the dryer, put your used dryer sheets in the basket. Next time you dry clothes reuse the older ones till they're thin (2-3 uses but don't count, you'll go crazy!)

(Some of these tips were taken from Ty Pennington's new show called Revolution. Some were just stumbled upon while searching the net and some I've just grown up with or discovered on my own.)

♥ Happy Blessings! ♥

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Sometimes in life things just happen.

We don't know why. We don't know how.

Most of the time we don't even ask questions.

It just happens.

Other times we question God and ask.

Other times we just accept that God has a plan and just go with it.

(photo and product courtesy of cherryblvd)

That's what's happening right now on my journey thru the 'land in between'.
(that's another posting that will come later).

With my crafting, I've just been going with the flow for a while. Some things I'm pursuing and making happen. Other things have just sort of fell into place and I accept them for a part of the bigger picture.

But wait ......

I have a secret.

Don't tell anyone.

......... wait .........


By some unique, unmistakeably, cool coincidence this awesome blogger mom (hi dawn!) found my products and contacted me..... LITTLE OL' ME .....! and wanted to share my products with HER readers!

I'm always very ecstatic when people like my toddler towels but even more humbled and thrilled beyond belief that someone would like them enough to write a whole column on my products and share them with her readers!


Dawn over at Mom-A-Logues is gracious enough to review my products, I encourage all of you to visit her site and snoop around. So many cool products over there! (Be sure to tell her I sent you!)


If you have received or bought anything from me, I'm curious how you like your product. I hope it met your needs and wants and exceeded your expectations. I put a lot of thought into almost every detail of my products. I make sure that you come back and purchase something from me not because it wore out but because you loved it so much you wanted another one!

(PS: Dawn will be debuting my products by weeks end so please visit her blog and my blog and fb page often!) I'm feeling generous again! What could be next?

AND I'm estimating that I'll hit the 100 friends mark on by fb page within a week so stay tuned for that awesome giveaway!


(and another woop-woop!!)


Tuesday, January 03, 2012

2012 Goals

♥ Greetings! ♥

... and welcome to a new year full of excitement and wonders!

I know I'm not the only one with new goals and a expectations for the new year. That's a given. What the challenge is to keep those goals and exceed our own expectations of what our life will be like in 3 months, 6 months or even next year.

I've read a few other blogs on creative ways to display your new years resolutions: type it up and display it in a pretty frame, hang it on the fridge, etc. Eventually after a few weeks of looking at that pretty frame, it becomes a piece of art and blends right in with the rest of your decor! Don't get me wrong, it's a great idea. I might do it myself. But every month, change the words you typed up. Move it to another room. Hang it in the bathroom where you'll look at it more. You get the picture!


(photo courtesy of Kathy at thedreamygiraffe)


Ok. You're sold on the idea of the whole picture frame idea and decide to type up your resolution in some pretty font and found some really awesome picture to put your text over. "Weightloss" "Loose 20" "Sugar is Bad". Good goals! All a positive life change! Don't stop there. You've made the commitment to something but now you have to backtrack.

A goal of paying off your credit card is great! But how do you make sure you succeed at that goal? .... only eat out once per month ..... no more shoe shopping ...... have a rummage sale ..... Awesome! You see the point now right? Hold on. You're committed to only eating out once a month, but how is that going to help pay off your credit card? Now your goal maybe should be adjusted to say something like "I will pay off my credit card by December 30 by increasing my monthly payment to $xxx."

Goals! Realistic Goals! Know your weaknesses. Know your strengths. Setting a final goal of loosing 40 pounds in 3 months might be ok for someone on the Biggest Looser or someone that has that much time to dedicate. But is it realistic for ME to loose that much in that short of time?

Also recognize triggers that could set you back. Don't visit the mall when all the stores are having a sidewalk sale. Don't go down the cookie aisle if you love chocolate. But also remember that we're all human. We have set backs. Oh well! Get over it and get back on track!

Make your resolution a priority. Make changing your life a priority.


(photo courtesy of Kate from chicalookate)


No more wining about how things suck right now. No more wishing you had a better car or bigger house. If that's what you want, set goals! Write out how you can get a better car. Be exact! Be creative! But no matter what your new years resolution is, make it a reality.

If you're happy where you're at and have your dream house and big car and 2.4 kids ... good for you! Now what? Life is an ever changing journey that should not stop just because you're happy where you're at and what you've done. Keep going!

♥ Happy Blessings! ♥

(the above photos are taken from artists featured on
Please click on the picture to visit their shop and see more of their work!)

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Pheasant Feed

I promise my blog won't always be about food but I couldn't resist sharing this. Fresh caught fish is my all-time favorite meal. I BEG for it every time I come home to my parents. This time though, dad offered to share his prizes with us tonight. Of course I'm not refusing this meal! Corn fed, wild pheasant. (I'm drooling as I typing this.....)

I don't know how mom does this or if it's just one of her special magic potions she whips up but it's theeee best! If you want her recipe, leave me a message & I'll see if I can get it out of her!

Well, here's the results! This is 2 birds. I managed to eat most of it. Mom, dad & my son got a few pieces though. :) Nothing better than wild, organic food to feed the soul!

ps. the pheasant photo I posted below is still alive ....... for now ........

♥ Happy Blessings! ♥