Home Maid Simple: June 2011

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - tasks accomplished

Here are some of the tasks I've accomplished so far in the 10 tasks in 10 days Challenge

Found a place for the mirror. 

Removed curtains from front room windows.

Tuesday Tip - Garbage Day


It's garbage day. What do you do when you forget to take the garbage out? I can't begin to count the number of times, we've run out to pull the can to the side of the road just as the garbage truck gets there.  This morning though, we weren't in time. In fact we completely slept through the garbage truck even passing. 
As you can tell we have a lot of garbage we need to get out. We're slowly tossing some of the boards in each week, but it's going to take awhile, especially if we forget to take the can out.

I have two tips this week that I'm putting into practice now.
1. Take your can across the road so it can be picked up when the truck comes back. Sorry you're out of luck if you're on the return trip side.
2. Put garbage day on the calendar. It seems like such a silly thing to write on the calendar, but it's the little things that often get overlooked.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Menu Plan Monday


It's the end of the month, so our menu was a little harder to plan this week.  I'm trying to use up what we've got left, as well as incorporate our Bountiful Basket from Saturday.  Here's what I came up with this week!

Monday - Chicken Breast with Fruit and biscuits
Wednesday - pasta and home made bread
Thursday - Sandwiches on home made bread
Friday - Home Made Pizza
Saturday - Barbeque
Sunday - Slow Cooker Roast

Sunday, June 26, 2011

MyMemories Review and Giveaway

*I received the MyMemories Suite software download for my honest review. All opinions are 100% my honest thoughts*
My Memories digital scrapbooking kits and scrapbook software

MyMemories is a digital scrapbooking software.  With the busy schedule of being mom, wife, maid, and everything those encompass I found I had little time to sit down and really scrapbook! So along comes My Memories Suite and in a few simple steps I was able to create a lasting album that I can print, burn, and share online.
For a long time I tried avoiding digital scrapbooking. I'm an oldy when it comes to things like scrapbooking and reading hard copies of books verse digital. So when I had the opportunity to review My Memories Suite 2, I decided it was time to check out digital scrapbooking.  I really quite enjoyed it.  I haven't printed any pages yet, but there hasn't been a need, since I can share all the scrapbooks directly online. No more working over pages just to have it sit on a shelf, or in a box. I'll still create some traditional scrapbooks for the Princess' to have on hand to show their kids, but digital scrapbooking is the way to go to share with all my friends and extended family.
I decided my first digital project should involve pictures from the blog.  I actually ended up using my family blog 3 Princess Acadmey for this review.  I had a lot of fun looking back through the posts I'd written, and the fun activities the Princess' and I have done together. 

My Memories Suite downloads right to your computer.  It comes with many layouts, papers, backgrounds, and embellishments.  There is also a wide variety for anything you could dream up to download at reasonable prices from the My Memories site.
I had a little trouble when I downloaded my first pack (Girls Dream Pack), but the simple instructions in the FAQ page led me through the process successfully.  Once I had it downloaded, I really had a lot of fun creating!  One major plus side to me of digital scrapbooking, is that I get to reuse all aspects of it. I don't have to continuously buy more paper, stickers, or embellishments. 

Right now you can get $10 off the My Memories Suite 2 with this coupon code -  STMMMS37783
(hint - copy and paste to avoid misspellings!)

Enter to WIN a free My Memories Suite 2

*I was provided with My Memories Suite 2 free of charge to review. No monetary compensation was received for this review.  All opinions expressed are mine.

Friday, June 24, 2011

blog updates

Have you noticed the changes?  Feel free to grab a button on the left to display on your blog!  Don't want to miss anything?  Connect with me on facebook and twitter, right side bar.  Or subscribe to Home Maid Simple's Rss feed, and email newsletter, also on the right side bar. 
We hope you enjoy the changes!  Mark is still working on the banner, so you may see it changing periodically in the next few days.  I promise it's just temporary though, once we like the way it looks online, it will be permanent (at least for awhile anyways.

10 Tasks in 10 Days

We're joining with Sit Relax and Read for her 10 tasks in 10 days challenge.  I have so much to do, but I am such a procrastinator some days, that this is really going to get me going!  I loved that Cha Cha posted pictures of her tasks, so I am going to do the same. 

1. Organize kids rooms and toys
Princess V's room
Princess C's room 
Princess V's room
2. Price and change out old light switches
It's a pretty even split between the older ones and the newer ones, but the whole house really should match 

3. Fix curtains. Starting with my epic fail, then figuring something new for the front room, and something for the girls rooms
I think we'll take the curtains completely down, and see how that looks for a couple days before doing anything else.
4. Set up craft and sewing table so it can be used

5. Organize around computer desk

6. Paint accent wall in master bedroom
The wall behind the bed we are going to paint Mountain Slate Blue. The master room is long and narrow, almost like a glorified hallway. I'm hoping this will make the room more cozy. 
7. Organize Laundry Area
This area is being used for everything right now, not just laundry. Once the cold storage room is finished I will be able to move most of this in there, but for now, I need it organized into this spot.
8. Find a place and hang this mirror
9. Finish Princess C's Christmas Stocking
10. Help Princess R paint a picture, and hang every one's art.
We all painted a piece of canvas to hang on our walls, but that was before Princess R was born. So she needs to paint one (that is going to be a blast!), and then I want to hang them on this wall.
 11. Plant Okra - this includes getting the area we want to plant ready.12. Hang Mark's hats.
13.Create a better place for magazines
14. Start cloth diapering
15. Wash Windows
16. Organize and Decorate counter between dining room and family room.

So the plan here is to get at least 10 of these completed in the next 10 days.  I'm up for the challenge, are you?

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Dance

I wasn't on the computer yesterday because we were spending the day doing this. The girls had dress rehearsal and recital all in one day, so it was quite the  day for us. Despite the running around though, I did manage to get most of the dishes done.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Under Construction

the blog that is! I learned about The Individuality through my dear friends blog Giveaway Corner.  I fell in love with the design Megean created for Giveaway Corner, and decided it was high time I do something nice for Home Maid Simple.  I used some birthday money, and got in touch with Megean to create a design I had floating around in my head.  I got the images today!! Such a happy mail day!
So enough said, here's a little sneak peak...

I will be spending the day playing around with the new design and getting things looking good! Aren't you so excited, soon you can put my button on your blog!!

Menu Plan Monday - 6/20


Our plan for the week 
Tuesday - Chicken with Fennel and Tomato Sauce
Wednesday - Chinese Pork Tenderloin
Thursday - Spaghetti with meatsauce
Friday - Chili
Saturday - Church Pizza Party
Sunday - Roast and potatoes

Organizing Junkie has asked whether we dish up at the table or buffet style.  We change it up pretty frequently.  My family grew up dishing up at the table, while Mark's was more buffet style.  There are definitely benefits to both.  Unfortunately we don't have a very large table, so on days that there are multiple dishes, I usually dish from the counter. If we can fit it all on the table though, that is what we do.  

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sentimental Sunday - Happy Fathers Day!

I love fathers day.  The special opportunity to show my dad and my husband what wonderful fathers I think they are.

To my dad,
I love you so much. You taught me how to be strong, and always faithful.  I have so many fond memories of our special times together.  I remember getting a daddy date and watching a movie, just the two of us (I don't remember the movie, just that I got you to myself).  Then getting up early one morning to go to the dairy farm with you.  So many summers spent in your classroom setting up and taking down wall displays.  When I was in college, I fondly remember driving between home and school while you tried to teach me some dutch. I wish I could remember some, but the time spent meant the world to me. Now that I have my own kids, I love seeing their smiles as you threaten to eat their toes, or send a spider up their leg.
Thank you dad for the many nights you got up to give me a fathers blessing. For being a strong priesthood holder who I always could and still count on for advice and love.  I'm so glad I get to be your daughter forever!
All my love

To My Husband,
I am so glad we met, and that you fell in love with me so quickly. Thank you for always being by my side. We've had our highs and lows, but I believe everything has made us stronger as couple.  I can't imagine life without you, or what I was even doing before I met you. You have a sense of honor that I just love, my true knight in shining armor.
You are such an amazing dad to our Princess'. Upon waking up each morning, their first question is usually "Where's dad?" I hope that never changes. I hope you can feel their love as much as I see it every day. They truly are "Daddy's girls". 
Thank you for all you do for our little family in providing for us, and leading our home.
Sprinkle All My Kisses on your head,

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Cold Storage

When we decided to buy this house, one thing I loved was that it ad a cold storage room.  It was all decked out with shelves and everything.  However, once we got in there, it wasn't as appealing. Mark is pretty sure there were mice in it, and the shelves were covered in some black gooey, moldy lookinf stuff.  So we've been spending some spare time tearing out the shelves, and just gutting the room.
 See the black on the walls? ~shudder~

I guess this was the insulation in the walls between shelves.

Once we have it gutted and cleaned up, we have big plans for this space.  For awhile we will still use it as cold storage for all our food storage.  Eventually though, we plan on tearing down the wall from the laundry area to open this room up. We want to add some cupboards, and counters/tables around the wall for a crafting space for the kids, and easier laundry folding area.  I can't wait until we get to that point!!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Budget Wall Art

I pretty much spent my day yesterday looking at the wall in our front room. We had this large bare spot that needed something, but a framed picture would've looked too cluttered.  We got to thinking about vinyl lettering and decided we'd go that route.  Then Mark came up with the brilliant idea to just paint it.  It would be a lot cheaper, and could actually fit into our budget.
The first step was designing what we wanted.  I knew it would say "Love is Spoken Here", but I still needed a good font.  After playing around for a bit with the fonts, Mark sat down, and in 5 minutes had the whole design done on photoshop.

To humor Mark, and because not many people will make the connection, the font and star are takes from his favorite band - Smashing Pumpkins.

The next step was finding someone to print our 2 foot by 3 foot design.  We went with Alphagraphics for just under $4! Now that's a deal.
After picking up the poster, I taped it up on the wall, and marked the corners.
Once I had it where I wanted it, I removed it from the wall to cut out the letters, creating a stencil. Anywhere the white wasn't attached (middle of R), I laid some tape on to keep it in place.  Then it was back on the wall.
At this point, I then used a pencil to trace the whole design right on to the wall. Finally the fun part! Painting. We used some black acrylic paint that we already had on hand.

Mark helped for a little, until Princess R woke up from her nap. We got Princess V and C to take some pictures.

Almost done, just touching up the edges!
DONE! It only took about 5hours from start to finish, but so worth every minute, and neck ache. Did you notice my yard sale find? I picked up knowing that this was exactly where it was going!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Asking a favor

I was going to post about what we did in the house today, but this is much more important to me.  If you notice on my right sidebar at the very top, there is a petition widget.  The school my brother teaches at is looking at cutting the band program in the high school and middle school.  Seeing as my husband is a band teacher, cutting a program like this means a lot to me.  It is so unfair to kids who are musically talented to have their programs cut.  Not to mention the amazing growth intelectually one can get from being in a music class.  So if you wouldn't mind, could you please click on the petition and sign it.  It would mean alot to many people, not just in the Belmont schools, but to musicians all over the world.  Too many band programs are cut due to lack of funds, and it needs to stop.  It only takes a minute (less really) to sign the petition, and help these kids keep their music!
Thank you in advance to anyone who takes the time to sign this.  It is truly appreciated.

*If you are in internet explorer you may not be able to see it. I suggest using Google Chrome.

Menu Plan Monday


Welcome to Monday! As I get our home more organized, and have less boxes to unpack, I am trying to organize the simple things in life.  Things like meals.  I showed you the menu planner my friend made a couple weeks ago, and it's now time to start using it! 
Saturday we got a Bountiful Baskets. So I went through all the fruit and veggies we got, and tried to make our meal plan off of those. Here's what I came up with

Monday - Baked potatoes, steamed broccoli
Tuesday - Sapghetti, salad and biscuits
Wednesday - Meatloaf, salad
Thursday - Fend for your self. Myself and the kids will be out of town.
Friday - Chalupa. This is what my family calls chalupa, not what most people think when they hear chalupa. I'll post the recipe friday!
Saturday - Grilled Chicken and mango salad

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Birthday Winner!



Thank you everyone for the Birthday Wishes this year.  I ran the 5k in under 40minutes and had a very enjoyable day with friends and family.  Part of my birthday gift to me is a blog redesign.  The Individuality is working on a logo. So don't panic when things start to look different this week.  She's shown me a preview and I am severely excited!!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Yard Sale Finds

It was a great week for yard sales.  I actually didn't even go to as many as I usually do.  On Wednesday a neighbor down the road was putting one on, so I stopped to see what was there. I got these great items there for .75 cents!!
Beautiful copper vase. It's going to look great with some of my Iris' in it.

Wall sconce for a candle.  I can't wait to show you where I'm putting these!

Then today our Young Men and Young Women were doing a yard and bake sale at the church.  We donated a bunch of our stuff to them, that they picked up last night. So of course I had to stop by to see what they had, and came home with this for $15!
A trampoline for the Princess' and I to exercise (have fun) on.

And a replacement shelf (two actually). We had these really nice black shelves, but they were a pain to put up. So we donated those to the yard sale, and I picked these up. They can't hold a lot, but they help make the place look nicer.

I'm linking up with

Friday, June 10, 2011

Patriotic Rag Wreath

I saw this over at Sassy Sanctuary, and just had to make one.  She actually makes a lot of stuff that I want to someday make.  This rag wreath however, I had the materials, and knew I had to make right away!  The only thing I needed to buy was the ($1.99) wire frame that I found at Hobby Lobby. 
Cut fabric about 1" by 6"

Begin tying knots around the wreath

Have a little fun with Nana

Hang on Door and Enjoy!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wordless Wednesday - Gardening


Mmm, Lettuce!


Beautiful Flowers

Lupine flower (flowers came up, but the rest of the plant died, interesting!)