wfmw- pretty packages

This is for the Greatest Tip Edition of Works for Me Wednesdays, hosted by We Are THAT Family.

I don't know that this is my greatest tip ever... but my greatest tips are things like....

- Don't spend what you don't have.

- Make your own chicken stock.

- Homemade laundry detergent.

These are the sort of things that everyone does. I'm hoping while this isn't the greatest, it's at least different and sort of great.

I always struggle when sending a gift in the mail.

Do I wrap in cute paper and then wrap in brown paper?

That seems like so much extra packaging and sort of blah...

Here's my new thing.

I took a large leftover gift bag from when Baby Girl was born (we have oodles of cute bags) and I cut off the bottom and the top edge with the handles. This left me with a large rectangular piece of bag. I folded the bag in half and used a zigzag stitch on my machine to sew up three sides, including the end that was folded in half.

I addressed the envelope while flat, put the gifts inside and then taped up the other end. If it wasn't too full I probably would have tried to sew the 4th side just to make it look cuter, but it worked out just fine.

To me this is a festive way to reuse old gift bags and send something fun in the mail!

monday menu

Here is this week's plan:

Monday- Refrigerator Magic (Jon has class this night so I usually aim for leftovers here)

Tuesday- Turkey burgers and baked beans (beans are in the freezer)

Wednesday- jambalaya with sausage and corn muffins (the jambalaya is from the Sav Mor sale last weekend!!!!)

Thursday- Refrigerator Magic (another class night!)

Friday- Fellowship Dinner- we're taking homemade italian bread with olive oil for dipping and a dessert... maybe a pound cake with blueberry sauce if I'm up to it

Saturday- homemade pizza and carrot sticks

Sunday- oatmeal pancakes and bacon

Head over to Organizing Junkie for more menus!


bowl shower caps

Upon opening my stocking this past Christmas I saw some plastic things with elastic. "Ohh, a shower cap?!" I said. (I actually sort of needed one of those for those days when there is no time to wash my hair.) My mom laughed.... not a shower cap, these were reusable bowl covers. "Ahh," I said, "interesting..."

Despite my initial skepticism...

These things rock!

They come in a set of 6 different sizes and work just like... well... just like a shower cap.

I literally use them at least once a day and it has been great not to fall back to saran wrap every time I turn around. The picture shows my veggies and broth which I prepped early in the day for chicken pot pie covered in their cute "caps" and ready to go.

For other thrifty green tips check out the Green Baby Guide's Thrifty Green Thursday.


we did Sav Mor

I finally did it! There was a Sav Mor sidewalk sale this past weekend and I made it up to Greenville to go with my sister Rebekah. Our Mom and Dad were in town spending the night with her so they came along for the exicitement and to help out.

It was an overwhelming experience.
The sign on the way in warning that Sav Mor was not responsible for any injuries incurred definitely set the tone.

We arrived at 8:30am and were already late. There were rows upon rows of boxes of food and people were already two and three deep all the way around waiting. We grabbed our banana boxes and scouted out a good place to wait.

While we waited I listened. Lots of people were talking strategy, "Are you going for that box of granola bars?" "No?, okay great, thanks" and "You go and grab that box and bring it to the side and we'll sort through." It was intense.

At 9:00am instructions were given and a whistle was blown.

I felt like a chicken with my head cut off! There were people running everywhere! I managed to get a lot in my box and made it to the side where I left my box with my mom, sorted through the box my dad had gotten and then I headed back into the fray for more goods.

I paid $7 on the way out and was back in the car on my way out of the parking lot by 9:15am. That was fast.

Rebekah and I headed to her house where we unloaded the food. (the picture is of both of our boxes) We sorted and divided things up. It definitely helped to go with someone so that we each got multiples of items and then were able to share with each other.

I think I'm most excited about the Hershey's dark chocolate chips which I more than likely will just eat plain when I need a chocolate fix.

I'll definitely try this again, though every other week would make my pantry explode!


the poop is real

Solid foods change everything!

A little while back I wrote a glowing review of my love for cloth diapers and how they work so well for us and I skipped and sang and wrote poetry about my wonderful bumGenius friends.....

Then Baby Girl tried carrots. "It" was orange. The she tried sweet potatoes, and avocado and peas and "it" got worse.

There have been a couple of diaper changes where I have literally said out loud, "What was I thinking?!?!"

A friend had mentioned using Viva paper towels (they're so soft they're almost clothlike) as a liner in the diaper and then flushing the residual "stuff." Last night (while watching LOST) I cut a whole roll in half and now have a neat stack of liners.

We'll see if this changes anything. Right now I am tempted to breastfeed exclusively until she is potty trained.

I might spend some time swagbucking some info on what to do about this unfortunate turn of events. Though I should probably just be thankful that everything is still moving on through.

I've posted this on the Thrifty Green Thursday carnival over at Green Baby Guide because I need help from some other cloth diapering mamas!! Any tips?!?!

this is super helpful!

Look what I just found HERE!

It's the schedule of coupon inserts for the whole year! For those of us that buy Sunday papers from the little metal boxes this is really helpful.
Maybe you've seen this already, but it was new to me.
If only I had found this out before buying this past Sunday's paper which had no inserts. *sigh*


roasted cauliflower recipe

A friend recently gave me this recipe and we tried it the other night.

I loved it! Jon wasn't so sure about it going into it, "I don't know that I prefer cauliflower..." were his exact words, but he ended up giving me the go ahead to make it again (which is good b/c I think one head of cauliflower will last the two of us 3 more meals!)

Here it is:

Preheat oven to 425.

Paint a jelly roll pan with olive oil. Slice cauliflower in 1/4 inch thick slices and place on pan in single layer.

Drizzle with remainder of 1 Tbsp. of olive oil (if you're only doing part of a head of cauliflower you won't need this much oil).

Sprinkle with 1/2 tsp. of salt (we used ground sea salt) and 1/4 tep. of fresh ground pepper.

Bake at 425 for 25-30 minutes. (I think ours went 20 minutes but our oven cooks a little hot).

This was a great new/different side dish for us that is healthy to boot!


baby girl's new playpen- wfmw

My daughter is 6 months old and she is not quite sitting up totally on her own yet. I mean... she sits on her own but then she will randomly decide to arch her back and throw her head backwards. That's Challenge #1. She spends a lot of time on the floor surrounded by the boppy or pillows.

Enter Challenge #2... any toys I put on the floor for her to play with she inevitably pushes away from herself and then falls over trying to get to them.

I accidentally stumbled across this fantastic idea.

Nice, huh? It keeps her sitting up and keeps her toys right within her reach! It won't last for much longer but it works for me right now.

Caution: I have now learned that if she's barefoot her toes can kind of get caught in the holes so a blanket over the holes is helpful in that situation.

For more tips check out Works for Me Wednesday over at Rocks in my Dryer.


My 2009 Book List

I have been inspired by Passionate Homemaking to plan out what books I hope to read this year in an effort to hold myself accountable to getting this done! (I've also stolen a few books from her list which sounded excellent.) In no particular order, here is my list:


The Hidden Art of Homemaking- Edith Schaeffer

Homeschooling: The Early Years- Linda Dobson (yes I know my daughter is only 6 months old, this is something we're considering and I'm curious!)

Teach them Diligently- Louis Priolo

The Prodigal God- Tim Keller

The Reason for God- Tim Keller

Serve God, Save the Planet- Matthew Sleeth

Total Money Makeover- Dave Ramsey (I've been meaning to read this for months, now that it's on the list I guess I have to do it!)


Eragon- Christopher Paolini

The Octavian Nothing Books I and II- M.T. Anderson

The Jane Austen Book Club- Karen Fowler

Possibly a few Laura Ingalls Wilder or L.M. Montgomery books

(If you can't tell I love kids/young adult fiction... I realized that other day that a lot of the fiction books I have gotten recently are things I either read for the first time in middle school or should have read around that age: The Hatchet books, Narnia series, Dark is Rising series, Holes, etc....)

I'll try to post a review as I finish each book.

First up.... The Reason for God.

monday menu: short week

Jon is off to a conference and Baby Girl and I are headed to my parents' house later this week so this is a short week of meals. Here goes:

Monday- sloppy joes and leftover cabbage/ramen salad- this is a big deal for me... I have hardly eaten any tomatoe based foods since I realized it made Baby Girl spit up more. But she's 6 months old now and we're just going to give it a whirl and she how she handles it. I am praying she does well... for her sake... and b/c not cooking with tomatoes cuts out a lot of possible foods!!

Tuesday- Whatever Soup and homemade bread... literally... whatever I throw in it is what we'll eat.

Wednesday- Refrigerator Magic- aka clean out the fridge

Thursday- I'm out of town and Jon will do further Refrigerator Magic or eat whatever he scrounges up... I know, I know, I'm a horrible wife to not leave him a well-balanced meal in the freezer to eat while I'm gone... but seriously... this man LOVES Refrigerator Magic and tells me so EVERYtime we clean out the fridge. If you know him in real life you understand this completely!

Friday- we're both out of town

Saturday- still gone

Sunday- as we'll just be getting back we'll probably have egg sandwiches and grits for dinner.

Sorry for the boring week! I promise more excitement next week!