Happening Now

Reading The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt. I’m not very far along yet (it’s a big one), but it’s already got me wanting more.

Running and planking.

Feeling uninspired.

Watching the last few episodes of Breaking Bad and OMG is it good! Don’t tell me what happens. I’ve managed not to hear anything about how it ends.

Wishing I could force Spring to arrive. Seriously.

Planning a little party for my photography business.

Thinking about buying yet another new plant. Home Depot had the most amazing cactus that I regret not buying a couple of weeks ago.

Starting to make plans for Hudson 5th birthday party.

Looking forward to a relaxing weekend at home.

Listening to The Big Deep, a local Omaha band. Pretty good.

Giving up any and all fast food for Lent. I don’t eat that much anyway, so it shouldn’t be hard…except maybe Chick-fil-A.

Focusing on my OLW, choose, and noticing a positive change in the choices I make.

Needing to get caught up on some past projects and thinking I’ll probably work on that this weekend.

Trying to keep the kids busy and happy while we’re stuck inside.

Going on a date with my cute hubby this weekend. Yay!

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I hope you have a fantastic weekend! Stay warm!

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Crafting and Creating Rut

I feel like I’m in a rut lately and I can’t get out. I haven’t been very crafty or creative lately and I think it’s bringing me down. I’m a much happier person when I’m putting my creativity to good use. I’ll admit that I did need a little break after the 10 Projects challenge, but this break has lasted long enough.

I also haven’t even been working on Project Life because the new kit only sold at JoAnn is sold out online and in stores. By the time I get that I’ll have three months to catch up on!

Where do you find inspiration when you’re in a creative rut? I would love to know!

I usually browse Pinterest, read blogs and flip through magazine for my inspiration, but even that hasn’t been working for me lately. I think my problem may simply be that we’re not getting out enough. It has been the most ridiculously cold winter. I am more than ready for Spring to arrive, and I’m always inspired by the things I see around me, so I’m hoping that with Spring’s arrival I’ll be flooded with creativity.

I am thinking about maybe doing another project challenge and with my birthday coming up, maybe I’ll come up with something to correspond with it. Only I think I’ll give myself more time to complete the projects and focus on some bigger things I’d like to make.

Ok, enough about that little vent. I’m off to plan.

Oh, but did you see this lip-syncing contest between Jimmy Fallon and Paul Rudd last night?! It was hilarious!

I mean, Jimmy is pure awesome. And Paul Rudd. Seriously love him.

Jimmy Fallon and Paul Rudd lip-syncing

Weekend Favorites

Note: This post was supposed to go up yesterday, but I just realized that I forgot to schedule it. Oops!

We went up to Sioux Falls to visit my parents this weekend. It was great to get out of the house and go somewhere else for a couple of days. The kids have major cabin fever (so do I) and getting out was just what they needed.

We didn’t do a whole lot while we were there, but here a few of my favorites.

Favorite outing was a breakfast date with Jeremy at Starbucks. I’ve found that since becoming parents, I almost like morning dates better then night dates. I think it’s because by the time 8 o’clock rolls around, I’m tired and ready to get comfortable at home. Plus I love mornings and coffee, so those two things together are a recipe for a good date.photo (19)

This sky and sunset were pretty awesome. It was a little difficult to photograph out of the car window, but I had to get a couple of shots. It looked more like a stormy summer sky than a winter sky. The clouds were amazing.photo (20)

Favorite moment was Harper sticking her belly out as far as she could in the giant mirror in the Gap. She thought it was hilarious. It was. She was making the silliest faces and laughing at herself. It was adorable. My mom and I could’ve watched her do that all day.Processed with VSCOcam with lv02 preset

Pink. I didn’t realize it until I was looking through my photos, but there is a lot of pink going on here. My parents wanted to take the kids to Toys R Us and let them pick out some toys. Harper was having a hard time deciding exactly which baby she wanted. She looked so small next to the big shelves.Processed with VSCOcam with m5 preset

All About Them: St. Patty’s Day Necklaces

I was looking through some really old scrapbooking supplies yesterday and came across some shamrock stickers and foam shamrocks. I thought maybe I could figure out a way to use them in a craft for the kiddos. Then it hit me; rainbow washi tape necklaces for St. Patrick’s Day.

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Supply List

washi tape

Project Life grid card or white cardstock

clover stickers

3″ scallop punch

hole punch

scissors

double-sided tape

I cut my washi tape in half so it was thinner and then just placed it in rainbow order on some white cardstock. I made two rows of each color. Then I used my scallop punch and made sure to get as much of each rainbow color that I could when I punched it out. I used a roll of washi tape to trace two circles on a 3×4 Project Life grid card, cut it out with my scissors and then placed the shamrock in the center. After that I attached it to the center of the scallop with a piece of double-sided tape. To make it into a necklace, I punched two small holes at the top and laced a piece of white yarn through them.

I think they turned out so cute that I might make them for Hudson’s preschool class!

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There are so many possibilities when making these. You could use all green washi tape, different shades of green, different shaped punches, etc. I could go on and on, but instead, I’ll tell you about the other version I made.

Next I whipped up some super simple shamrock badges using  a piece of old scrapbook paper, cardstock and some foam shamrock stickers.

I punched out the scallop, added a green cardstock circle with a foam shamrock centered on top and then stapled them all together through the center. Even though the foam shamrocks are stickers, I liked the look of the staple for some reason. Then I used a hole punch for the top and put a safety-pin through it. I think these would be cute for older kids since I used a safety-pin or you could always make these into necklaces as well with some yarn.

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These crafts were a fun way to use up some old supplies. I did notice that they have some of the glittery foam shamrocks at the Dollar Tree again this year. I’ll think I’ll head over there today to get another package so I can make them for the preschoolers.

Happy Friday everyone! Have a great weekend!

Sharing this project here:

http://www.thirtyhandmadedays.com/2014/02/party_bunch_link_up/

Recipe Book-Simple Cinnamon Rolls

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I’ve pinned a few different recipes on Pinterest that use Pillsbury seamless crescent roll dough to make cinnamon rolls. The recipes looked easy and yummy, so I bought some dough at the store and whipped some up this past weekend. The recipes I pinned were for strawberry jam rolls and pumpkin butter rolls. I wanted to make regular cinnamon rolls, so I came up with my own recipe. Here is what I did.

Simple Cinnamon Rolls

serves 4

Ingredients

1 roll Pillsbury seamless crescent roll dough

1/3 cup of melted butter

3 Tbsp sugar

1 Tbsp cinnamon

I used this frosting recipe  and it made way too much for the small amount of rolls. I will definitely cut the recipe in half next time.

Frosting

3 oz softened cream cheese

1/4 cup softened butter

1 1/2 cups powdered sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla

1 Tbsp milk (more if you like your frosting thinner)

 

Directions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Unroll the dough on your countertop. Spread melted butter evenly all over the surface of the dough. Sprinkle the sugar evenly over the butter, then sprinkle on the cinnamon. Roll the dough starting with the more narrow end. Cut the dough into rolls using a piece of string or serrated knife. Place them in a 8×8 baking dish and bake for 16-20 minutes; until slightly browned on top.

Make the frosting while the rolls are baking. 

When rolls are done baking, remove from the oven and let cool a few minutes before frosting. Serve warm.

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The kids loved these! They turned out light and fluffy. They aren’t very big rolls, but it was enough to feed the four of us with one left over. They were ready in under 30 minutes and really simple to make. Also, you can easily adjust the amounts of sugar and cinnamon to your liking. Some people like a lot of cinnamon and some like a little. It’s really up to you.

I love an easy, fast recipe!

Weekend Favorites

I’m starting a new series today called Weekend Favorites where I’ll be posting about favorite things from the weekend on Monday mornings. It might be thrifting finds, photos I took, things we did, recipes, etc. I think this will be a great way to celebrate all the little things. It’s usually the little things that are magic.

Here are this weekends favorite things.

Sunday’s thrifting find. I love the mustard color and think I might plant a succulent in it. How cute would that be?! It was only $3, which makes it even better in my book!DSC_0454DSC_0457DSC_0459

 

Donkey Tail plant. On a run to Home Depot for some more terra-cotta pots, I picked up this awesome plant. I’ve wanted one for a long time. Now I can check it off my list. Hopefully I can keep it alive…DSC_0434DSC_0436DSC_0439DSC_0441

 

Photos of the kids. Love how excited they get about little things like heart-shaped lollipops on Valentine’s Day. photo (17)

 

Learning games on Sunday morning while I made breakfast.DSC_0432

And last, but not least, flowers from Jeremy on Valentine’s Day. I don’t get flowers often, so this was a nice surprise! Oh and there was wine too. I love having fresh flowers in the house. Especially this time of year when everything outside is so brown.DSC_0466

Hope you’re having a great start to your week!  

14 Books in 2014-Book One

I just finished my first book of the year. Hooray!

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image source

The Husband’s Secret by Liane Moriarty

I have to admit that this book started off slow for me. There were a lot of female characters and because I wasn’t totally “into” the book yet, it made it hard for me to keep them all straight.

It was an interesting read. I wasn’t all that shocked by the secret. I also didn’t really feel any type of connection with any of the characters. I didn’t get emotional at any point in the story. Probably because I wasn’t emotionally invested in it. It just didn’t pull me in.

There were a few twists at the very end that were quite thought-provoking though and I did finally feel empathetic towards the characters and their life situations.

Overall, I think there was too much hype around this book (I kept hearing about how good it was), so I was expecting more from it. Sometimes when my expectations are too high, a perfectly good book can get ruined.

However, I liked the book and I would recommend it to my friends.

Up next is a big one and I’m super excited to get started!

My 20/20 Experience

So, I saw Mr. Justin Timberlake in concert last night and let me just tell you, it was A-MA-ZING!! I knew he would be awesome because well…it’s JT. I mean. Come. on.

I’ve been looking forward to this since June when we bought the tickets. He did not disappoint. He was late, but he was sick, so I’ll cut him some slack. Especially because he went on to perform for over two hours. It was a non-stop dance party! I don’t remember ever having that much fun at a concert and I’ve been to A LOT of concerts.

It was just so fantastic!

This is my friend Rachael and I right before it started. To say that we were out of our minds excited would be an understatement. photo (10)

 

We were in the back, but it didn’t matter. We partied like it was 1999. photo (11)photo (12)photo (13) 

This whole portion of the stage lifted up and moved forward above the crowd toward us in the back. Very cool. You can see the red lights on the stage in the left corner.photo (14)photo (15)

Man, that guy can put on a show! I can’t get over it. I’m so happy I was able to see him.

I love, love live music. The energy at concerts is the best.

Concerts are a favorite for sure! Always.

Happening Now

drinking hot coffee on this freezing cold day.

planning some craft projects that I can’t wait to get started on.

watching the Winter Olympics.

realizing that I’m way behind on my cookbook challenge and plan to start this week.

needing to clear out closets and finally get rid of some baby stuff that I’ve been hanging on to “just in case”.

trying to keep myself busy because this winter really seems to be dragging.

running at least three times a week, but planning to add to that.

feeling excited about some Valentine’s day plans for the kids.

reading the Art of Simple blog and feeling very inspired. I think I’ll read her book next.

working on creating a meaningful morning routine.

recovering from a sleepless weekend. the kids are still hanging on to colds (runny noses and coughs) and Harper didn’t sleep much at all. not. at. all.

getting ready to party with Justin Timberlake tonight! I’ve been waiting 9 months for this concert and it’s finally here. Hooray!!

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Project Life 2014-Intro Page

I wanted to do something different this year for my intro/cover page in my Project Life album. I’ve seen some awesome intros and was inspired. Since I loved my coin pocket page from my December Daily so much, I decided to do something similar for my PL.

But because I was adding a coin pocket page in the very front, I needed something neutral, something that wouldn’t take the focus off it. I designed a quick 12×12 page that could be cut to fit the standard pocket page. I’m seriously so stoked about how it turned out!

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I wanted a combination of see-through elements, embellishments, patterned paper and photos.

I used 3×4 cards from the Seafoam and Midnight editions which I cut down to 2×2 squares. I’m obsessed with that black and white cross paper. And in case you’re wondering, yes, it does look exactly like my DIYed curtains! Obsessed.

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I even added my One Little Word, Choose, into a pocket.DSC_0531

I had a full sheet and some smaller pieces of that awesome star overlay left from my December Daily and just had to use it too.DSC_0536

And now for the back side and the enlarged 12×12 photo.

I kept it simple and used only the black and white cross paper. It looks a little funky because of the see-through pockets, but it works for me.DSC_0541

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And I’m lurrrrving my giant ampersand! I love that it’s black and white and huge! I also love that if I want to add anything to it at some point I can. But, for the moment, I think it’s super awesome!DSC_0543DSC_0544DSC_0546

Then once you turn the page, it will be the first week of January’s spread.

I’m so excited to be starting another album with this new year. And this finished intro makes me even more excited.

Have a great weekend!