Sunday, August 3, 2014

What I know now, that I wish I knew then

August is here and September will soon follow, this year is zoooooming past. Looking back, I took note to a few things that I wish I had known when I first got here is goes.

Did you ever notice the expensive price laundrey detergent? *I did as we made our budget & grocery list* Yikes! Sky high prices.
So, after asking some experienced homemakers, I was given this liquid recipe. It is very easy and all of the ingredients can be found on the laundry isle in the store. (Yes, Wal-mart had best prices.) All of the ingredients cost less than $7 and it makes 2 gallons of detergent, good for 64 loads of laundry (1/2 c. per load.)
For those of you who are doing the math, $7 for only 64 does not look good. However, the initial $7 that you invest makes two additial batches, before you'll have to purchase another ($1) bar of fels naptha. So, 64 loads x3 batchs=192 loads. $7/192 loads=about 4 cents per load.
Or two fels naptha...64x6=384. $8/384 loads=2 cents per load
Compared to the cheapest (on sale) liquid detergent $2/32 loads (6.25 cents per load)
Invest $8 for 6 batches/384 loads or $24 for 384 loads
In the long run the homemade detergent pays off! Additionally, you know what ingredients are in your soap. :-) Here is my favorite recipe:

Homemade Laundrey Detergent     Makes 2 gallons
1/3 bar fels naptha
1/2 c. washing soda
1/2 c. borax powder
(2) one-gallon containers

Finely grate fels naptha into a BIG pot. Add 6 cups of water, heat until dissolved. Remove from heat.
Add 4 cups of hot water, washing soda and borax powder, stirring until combined. Set aside.
Divided 1 gallon+6 cups of water between (2) gallon containers. Add soap mixture to each container, evenly dividing as you go. Stir to thoroughly combine ingredients. Set aside & allow detergent to gel for one day.
Use 1/4 c. to 1/2 per load of laundry

Monday, April 2, 2012

April 2

Wow, so it is officially April!! That means taxes are due very soon. sigh I've been trying to wade through all the forms. It is has been rather frustrating. (Though the youtube vidoes and ehow have been helpful in pointing me in the right direction.)

Thankfully, I have a sweet little doll to make me smile. After eating, she doesn't mind being put on the floor and playing. She quickly rolls onto her back and commences with blowing bubbles, smiling at her reflection in the mirror and talking to her little toys.

Saturday morning she woke up early (like 5:30) to eat. Once she was finished eating, I was ready to fall back into bed. Adeline was in a very visiting mood. She talked while I changed her diaper and smiled contently. I was still not very wake, so back into her pack-and-play she landed. Michael woke up at 7 to Baby still happily talking to her toys. He had fun playing with her while I got some more sleep.

Ok, well back to figuring out taxes.

Saturday, March 31, 2012


Saturdays are my favorite day of the week. Sleep in and relax without feeling like I need to get up and work. lol

Michael worked the morning and got home in time to get ready to take me out. We went to see The Screwtape Letters on stage (thanks Mom!!). It was definitely a thought provoking performance. It was interesting how "real life" was used as a tool to distract the new believer from getting to know the Lord better. And a sober reminder to not let things distract from spending time with the Lord.  

Baby likes chewing on her fist

Baby Girl got to enjoy a good long visit at Grandmom and Grandpops. :) She was having her picture taken when we returned. She still is not into taking a bottle while at G'MS. sigh We'll have to work on that when she wakes up hungry at night.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Lowes, Menards and Beyond

Today was a good day for house projects. Michael and I went out to breakfast and made a list for shopping and projects. I stuck to the shopping list pretty well. :) The only extra's I got were: gladiolus bulbs, bottled water and 4th of July tshirts.

We found most of the items on our shopping list with no problem . . . paint, tape measure, outdoor light. Unfortunately, we were not able to find jalapeno pepper plants for a reasonable price. sigh So, I'll be planting more seeds and hope the plants mature before the weather gets cool this fall.

The paint was fun picking out because it is for our last two major rooms. . . the den and our extra guest room. Michael picked out the colors for the den . . . tan and a dark brown. I'll put pictures up after we get one of the walls painted. The other room was harder to pick out paint for because there are so many different shades of green! We finally settled on a bright yellowish green. (And yes, we now will have a green living room and guestroom.)

Once we got home, I crashed with a late afternoon nap and Michael tackled putting up the outdoor light. It will be very nice to walk up to our back door with a lighted entry. :) I'm so thankful he knows how to do handy-man type work!

Later today Michael went fishing with the guys and I started painting the guestroom. I just did the entry/corner, since boxes and a bed take up the rest of the room. Now I'm waiting for the paint to dry to see if I really like the color . . . I think I do. :)

Beware ! ! Wet Paint!

We'll see what it looks like once the paint drys  :)

To finish the day . . . my husband just brought me a serving of mint ice-cream, topped with chocolate syrup and a double chocolate cookie. And a glass of milk . . . wow, I have an amazing husband! :)

Friday, June 24, 2011

Finished Project

This week Christa asked if I would make a dress for her. She is serving at a wedding reception and was not able to find a good "blue" dress at any of the retailers. So, I dug around in my sewing stuff until I found some  patterns. She narrowed it down to these two patterns. Her final choice was the New Look pattern 6699, which I used to make bridesmaid's dresses for my wedding last year. I love the NL pattern because you can design the dress how you want it. :)
The pattern choices

Simplicity 2498 - View D was from Paula's wedding
The pink checkered is what Christa decided on, but no gathered overlay.
The material used was some I found at a garage sale. It was a super deal, 5 yards for three dollars. :) Christa came over Tuesday evening and helped me cut out the material. One major thing when cutting out a pattern is to go by your measurements not the size on the pattern! Thankfully, I remembered to check before we started cutting out. It saved us from having to cut out entirely new pieces.

The next day I set to work sewing! :) I must say that sewing side seams is much easier than piecing it all together. Christa was patient as I pinned her in and made sure everything fit correctly.

Christa had originally wanted ruffles on the straps, but once they were on she quickly realized it was not the look she was wanting! So, off they came and on I went making the bodice. Making the bodice took up the most time by far. Of course, some of that is because the pieces look so similar. It made the pieces way to easy to get the top and bottom switched around. I definitely got my fill of seam ripping. (One of my goals is to make a project without having to seam rip!)

The zipper was the last piece to go in. Whew, not having a zipper foot can make things complicated. However, this was my second dress to make without a zipper foot. So, I knew (thank you experience!) to sew the zipper in with HUGE stitches. (It makes seam ripping so much easier.) Unfortunately, by then my brain was tired and I forgot to pay attention to where the excess material was. So, out came my seam ripper.

Despite all the mistakes . . . I did finish the dress! I decided staying up late was better than getting up early this morning to finish it. lol So, one AM arrived and the dress was completed. :)


Christa :)

Christa's tea-length dress

C&R + Adopted family :)

Friday, June 3, 2011

Weekend Activities

The Matson visit was a success. :) Dinner Saturday night was plentiful, complete with cranberry fluff! It is absolutely the perfect summer dessert if you use frozen cranberries. An amazing blend of sweet, tart and cool.  Here is the recipe, so I don't lose it again:

Cranberry Fluff
1 1/2 c. sugar
12 oz. cranberries (fresh or frozen)
1 can pineapple (crushed OR whole)
1 pkg. cool whip
1/2 pkg. mini marshmallows . . . . which I was informed is a TX Baz. addition :)

Place sugar and cranberries in blender, add small amounts of pineapple juice if the sug/cran doesn't blend. (Getting the frozen berries smooth took most of the pineapple juice. When using fresh cranberries, you drain the juice!) Pour mixture into bowl. Blend pineapple and add to sugar mixture. Add cool whip and marshmallows. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
Serves: LOTS!!

The evening was spent eating and catching up on life. Sunday, Michael, A. Sue and Rachie went to church. The boys got an early start of getting to the Indy 500. Michael met up with them just as the race was beginning. Unfortunately, the guys did not bring a camera. So, no group shots at the race. And I am still looking for my camera/pc connector, so no pics from me either.

The girls decided to try out 'lil Nashville after church. By the time we arrived  . . . it was definitely time for lunch! (The nice thing was we missed the lunch crowd.) We decided on a little place that served soups, salads and sandwiches. Their lemonade was absolutely amazing! Rach and A. Sue got salads, while I settled on hamburger with steak fries. Yummy! After finishing off lunch and getting lemonade to go . . . we looked at the map and decided to  walk each block and see the sights.

There were tons of ice cream shops and trinket and candle shops. We found so of the biggest bugs ever! Plus we found a character from UP. :) (Pictures will follow as soon as I find the connector!) The neatest place in town was the 1879 jail. It was a two story building that looked like it was made out of railrode ties. It was extremely cool inside! Seriously, the temperature was just about as cool as most of the a/c shops we went too. The main entry into the jail was extremely SHORT! Rach and I both had to duck for our picture. There were several cells downstairs and upstairs was a open room. One of the walls had several ball and chains attached to the it.

Before leaving we found one cute resale shop called Seven Sisters, tucked away in a corner. It was a good idea having a resale shop in Nashville, since there clothes were very nicely priced. All three of us looked through the wracks for "finds", but unfortunately the sizes just were not quite right.

Our favorite shops were ones that sold old antique signs with funny sayings. Here are a few the sayings, "If your smoking in here you had better be on fire"; Trespassers will be shot . . . Survivors will be shot again! and "I'm not short . . . I am fun sized!". After a hot afternoon, we needed some laughs.

Unfortunately, we ran out of time before we could get icecream. (We joined the guys for dinner at the friends they stayed with.) We did stop at one of the ice cream parlors, but the line was all the way around the corner! (Their icecream must have been REALLY good!) So, the plan is start with icecream the next time we go. :)

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Visitors :)

It is the weekend of the Indy 500 and we are getting ready for the Matsonian's visit. It has been my job to clean out our storage room, which actually is an extra guest room. The task has been challenging, as the garage is already full of tools and extra carpet. So, I reorganized closets and made room for more boxes. Since we still have a limited amount of space in our home, I lined the big boxes along the storage room's wall.

When I started cleaning the storage room, there were boxes from the door to the far wall. Fortunately, I was able to condense boxes and get rid of stuff. I have a good size pile of empty boxes waiting to be burned.  (My afternoon project.) I am very pleased with the result, as there actually is space to walk through the room! The other good news is my sewing material and accessories are now readily accessible. :)

Now I have time for a quick nap before it is time to make supper. I was thinking of throwing together baked chicken, seasoned potatoes, mac & cheese and cranberry fluff. And if I have extra time, I'll make Mom's whole wheat bread. sigh Nothing beats walking into a house to the fragrance of fresh baked bread. :)