Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Easy Neighbor & Teacher Gifts

I always like to do a little something for my neighbors at various times throughout the year. Usually at Christmas, it's something from my kitchen but then you have the expense and trouble of how to package the goodies. I went with something a little different after a reminder from a friend about her scent of Christmas recipe. It's really easy and not too expensive if you catch a sale or have an Aldi store nearby. That's where my fruit came from and the spices were on sale at my local grocery store last week. The baggies came from Hobby Lobby.

In each baggie, place one orange and one lime. You could probably sub an apple for one of the citrus if you wanted. Also add in a sprinkle of whole cloves, 2 cinnamon sticks, and 5-6 whole bay leaves. That's it! Attach a tag that instructs the recipient to quarter the fruit, add the spices, and cover with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer all day, adding more water as needed. 

While also at Aldi's, I decided to do a goodie basket for the teacher's lounge. Miss M's school has a pretty small staff, so there's enough for everyone to have a little something. Using a Goodwill basket I had on hand, I spent less than $15 for the entire basket. I included:
  • 3 green apples, 3 bananas, 3 red apples
  • 2 oranges and 2 pears
  • 1 can of beef snack sticks
  • roasted peanuts in the shell
  • Hershey chocolate kisses
  • Peppermint Oreo type cookies
Tied up with a bow and a note of appreciation, this former teacher thinks the basket will empty quickly once placed in the teacher's lounge tomorrow morning. For both of these gifts, I would suggest giving them early in December so the goodies are eaten before Christmas break and the scent of Christmas may be enjoyed if your friend hosts any kind of holiday gathering in her home.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Friday Funnies

While visiting my parents over Thanksgiving, we were observing the three beagles, (ours, my folks, and my brothers) romp and play in the yard. One started to dig and my dad called out "Rudy, stop digging you crazy dog!"
Miss M. replied, "Popa, that's not what Daddy calls Hudson. He calls him a dead-gum dog."

Oh how I love little ears that mishear. She thought it was funny that I didn't know what dead-gum or dad-gum meant.


Friday, November 4, 2011

Friday Funnies

Mr. C came running to find me the other day during his TV time. "I don't like this show. It's called the Balooney Tunes and it's kinda scary."
 Don't you love how little ears mishear things sometime?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Halloween Fun

 Even though Mr C doesn't look too happy in most of these pictures, he was thrilled with his costume. He did however elect not to wear the fuzzy mustache that came with the costume. "It's itchy and how will I eat a hot dog?" Good point Mario!
Since I sold 3 outgrown costumes before Halloween, I was able to feel OK about spending $20 on the Mario costume. We had a total of 4 Marios at church Sunday night, so I am pretty confident I will be able to sell it with no trouble next fall.
 Annie did a little singing for a few lucky few! Her dress a thrift find for $3 this summer, with the addition of my gold locket, her black Mary Jane's, and $2 for a can of red hairspray on her hair which was curled the night before. It washed out surprisingly easy too.
 The winning car at trunk or treat. Skippy the dog was later added as the inmate -in a full doggy costume. Really, how can you compete with a cute pup?
 2nd place Fiesta!
Our car "Parkway Perk" coffee shop - a play on the name of our church. As in the past, we didn't spend much on our car, using things we had around the house!  Click here for a peek at our trunk from last year.
 We served hot chocolate with whipped cream and sprinkles along with candy of course!
 The menu got lots of attention.
 Phineas! (The kids and I clean out the guts and Dad does the fancy stuff.)
A night shot just before we went home. See our luminaries on the ground? They had coffee scented tea lights in them - we worked on ALL the senses! 

 Day 2 of fun - Halloween Night! Since it was a school night Miss M opted for a simpler costume. She wasn't 100% thrilled with the flour on her face, but the mixing bowl "treat bag" made her happy! Mr C stuck with Mario.
Not really sure what's she's going for in this shot - Iron Chef maybe?

Friday, October 28, 2011

Friday Funnies

Crazy Hair Night @ Awana..... not much else to say. (I am tired from being up too last with a certain baseball game last night so this is as good as it gets today!)

Also, Mr C wanted me to post this joke for you folks who live in an area like we do where jokes are expected on Halloween in exchange for candy.     
What did the tornado say to the car?  
Do you want to go for a spin?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Apple Pickin'

Back in the day when I taught kindergarten in Arkansas, we would always do an "apple" unit in early fall. Never mind I had never picked an apple anywhere but the grocery store and neither had my students! It was exciting my first fall "up north" when we took the students to a real apple orchard. I remember thinking how fun it would be to take my own children some day. We have gone about every other year and this time around we decided to go a little further across the river and into the next state. Lots of fun as you can see!

 This was a "mine shaft" tunnel slide....we spent a lot of time in this area.
 A long trek back up the hill!
 We ran into some neighbors on the apple wagon and they snapped this photo of us.
The apple picking was little disappointing to Miss M because there had been several hundred preschoolers the week before us and lots of apples had fallen on the ground. Mr C didn't mind as it made it much easier for him to pick! They were still tasty though and made for a great apple crisp.

Rides, this giant jumping thing, and silly shows made for a fun day!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Secret Keeper Girls

I can't say enough about a recent Secret Keeper Girls event Miss M and attended with several friends. If you are a person of influence in the life of a young girl aged 8-12, check out this site. Several of us also read the book by Dannah Gresh entitled"Six Ways to Keep the "Little" in Your Girl and it was an excellent read for mothers of girls even as young as 5 or 6. 
We had a fun time piling in the church van for a short ride across the river into the next state and grabbed a bite to eat before the event.

 Miss M and I were chosen to play a game. Luckily, we had help from the audience!

The event was a perfect mix of fun and the truth that is found in God's Holy Word. Modesty, labels, hurtful words....just a few of the topics presented. Some of our girls are already on me to check into bringing Secret Keeper Live to our church!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Friday Funnies

A day late, but still had to post this picture.
I think this woman is trying to steal a pumpkin.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fancy & Frugal

My real life friends know I love a good bargain, so I just had to post a few pictures from a recent wedding our family attended. Miss M is sporting a sparkly dress in crimson velvet that we scored from Kohl's during an end of spring sale. The original price was $50. It was 90% off, making it $5!!

Not to be outdone, Mr C is dressed up in a totally free-to-me 3 piece hand-me-down suit, which included the shirt and tie. With shoes from Payless and Target, they were dressed to the nines and we only spent pennies!

The reception was baseball themed, so guests were invited to pose with various props for candid shots. My wee ones took advantage of it and posed with their "just like family, but not really" aunts.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday Funnies

Mr C is trying to learn the song "Bible Book Bop" by the Go Fish Guys. He is convinced that the next to last book of the New Testament is "dude" - not Jude.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Sweet & Simple Gift

This was so easy and a big hit with Miss M's teacher at open house night. I didn't even have to purchase the takeout box - I received a little something in it and just saved it for this purpose! Just dip one half of a few fortune cookies into melted chocolate and add a few sprinkles. Then go here and print out cute labels and call it done! You could make your own label to personalize for just about anyone who needed a little day brightener.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Miss M's 8th Birthday Luau

Call me crazy, but yes I let Miss M invite six friends over for s sleepover party. We did have the assistance of an "aunt". Sara fills that void nicely since our family is out of state. The evening started off with making tie-dyed shirts.
Miss M and I sporting our matching VERY vintage and VERY authentic Hawaiian shirts my grandparents got on a trip right around the time I was born. (see, VERY vintage!)

Fruit kabobs, a veggie tray, and pizza for dinner...not very Hawaiian but easy and tasty nonetheless!
Miss M showing off her flip-flop cake. It was just about the easiest cake we have made to date!
Turquoise of course! Click here for directions.

A little bleary-eyed the next morning but most were still going strong. Doughnuts helped the cause.
Our customary "crazy" shot on the front porch, sporting the shirts we made.
 Also, big thanks to my friend Kris for loaning us a bug tub of tropical decorations. As you can see, even the bathroom got in the party spirit. When I started this post, I realized just how few pictures I had taken - too busy making the party happen I guess!

For the actual birthday day at Nana & Popa's house, we continued the theme with a beach cake.

At long last, Miss M got her ears pierced with no tears! Can hardly believe my girl is eight!


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