Thursday, October 30, 2008

Poor pumpkin saw. You never had a chance.

A story through pictures...

Twin B: "Holy crap! Mom is giving me some sort of cutting instrument. Grandpa would be proud. Why am I wearing this ONE glove? Am I turning into Michael Jackson?"

Twin A: "Eeew. This is like, so gross. Pickles!! What are you putting in my hair?!"

Twin B: "Mom, take the damn picture. My face is gonna get stuck like this (*note* 3 yr old does not actually curse....yet)."
Pickles: "Hey pumpkin, come here often? How's about I lick you all over?"

Pickles: "If a big sister and a pumpkin are pushed off the table at the same time, which one will hit the ground first?"

Pickles: "Mom, you said you did want me to dump the pumpkin seeds all over the place?!"

Me: "Dude (sometimes referred to as the husband), why is your knife broken?"

Dude (Smiling smugly): "Girl, my muscles are way bigger than yours. Not my fault the knife couldn't handle it."

Me: "Oh, thanks for clearing that up. You owe me ninety-nine cents."

True story.
P.S. It was recently brought to my attention that not everyone knows you can toast and eat pumpkin seeds?! Is this possible??
Anyway, it's super easy: Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.
Rinse your seeds, remove all the yuckies (aka pulp). Spray your pan with some non stick cooking spray and spread in a single layer. Throw some salt on 'dem bad boys and pop 'em in for 25 mins. Stir after 10 mins.
Other ideas:
*sprinkle with parmesean cheese and garlic salt
*cinnamon and sugar
*Tony Chacheres (if you don't know what that is, too damn bad)
*Pumpkin pie spice

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Half baby, half cockatoo

Guess I shouldn't have switched his Cheerios with that bird seed huh?
Maybe I just shouldn't let him mash spaghetti with a roux-based sauce (read: paste) in his hair??? Or maybe I did this on purpose?!?!?! I like his rocker hair!
Now, for more serious news. The mighty Magnolia in our back/side yard must go. Now our deck is built around this thing (see picture).

So now we're going to have bench seating around a stump??? Nice conversation starter, says I. Poor little swings. They were whipped around by Gustav's winds and the branch itself snapped The insurance company says "Dis got's to go, ho!" Ok, maybe she didn't word it like that, I'm paraphrasing. Apparently, when a huge ass tree splits in places off the trunk that's a problem.

I was hoping to leave it all up to fate and just invite people I don't like to hang out on my deck (Please snap, please snap). Whatevs. Upside: No more sweeping the stupid leaves off the deck.
Downside: no shade on the deck. Not to mention the deck wrapped around nothing.

Here is another problem: Pickles will not leave his pickle costume on! Doesn't he know I spent countless hours on that! And by countless hours I mean one.

Look at him wriggle out of that thing! Booger. Speaking of boogers, check out Twin B digging for gold in the background. Sweet

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Yep! I'm cheap!

I heart my house. Well certain aspects, not so much (kitchen is far too small. I have too much crap to fit into that tiny little nook). I do love that I have a ginormous laundry room/catch all room. It houses the washer and dryer (dur!), an extra fridge, ample closet and cabinet space, a little work area for the hubs, and a lot of other crap...I mean stuff. There is a lot of counter space. UGLY counter space. Hurricane Gustav only managed to ruin the parts of my house that I liked. This little gem remained intact.

The house was built in the '40s and I half think this stuff is original. Aside from the fact that it's hideous, it has huge bo-bos on it.
Off to Lowe's. Don't be scerred ladies, embrace the Lowe's. Anyshway, I picked out some peel and stick tiles that I liked and headed home. Dug into the hubster's tool pouch and found some sharp cutting instrument. After scaring the crap out of said husband while attempting to get the blade out, I set to work.
I lined the pieces up against the wall and stuck those bad boys down. For the second row I had to do some trimming. It's fairly simple: just score it with the blade and bend it on the cut and it snaps right off. Any jagged edges I smoothed with the blade.
It turned out pretty nice. I redid my counter tops in about 30 mins and for $20! Can't beat that. If you can beat that, I don't want to hear about it ya na-sayer!

Monday, October 27, 2008

White chocolate dipped goodness.

Our Saturday was jam-packed. Pumpkin patch in the AM, Hobby Lobby, LSU party, then a pumpkin carving party, topped off with drinks with the hubster. Man, I'm just tired typing that (Mondays are rough).

Started off at the pumpkin patch. Now, when I say pumpkin patch, I mean a swath of land with pumpkins thrown on the ground. I SOOOO miss the actual patch of pumpkins I used to go to in SoCal. You actually picked your little orange orb (or red or white, or green) off the vine! I loved that. The kids had fun though. Pickles tested each pumpkin with a good lick. Little known fact, proper pumpkin selection hinders on it's taste. Or did I just make that up?

The LSU party was fun, but getting there was not. The kids desperately needed a nap so we were late. I can't not bring something to a party. So I brough a cream cheese and pineapple dip. Yum. I ate most of it.

Now for the ghost cookies! I made these while Pickles napped. If I hadn't, I wouldn't have ghost cookies so much as white chocolate covered baby.

I bought some Nutter Butters which was a task in itself. The grocery store had fully stocked shelves. The ONLY hole was the section on the shelf for the friggen Nutter Butters. Aggrivating. I ended up buying the go-packs (4 cookies individually wrapped). I was determined. I melted a bag of white chocolate chips with 1 Tablespoon of shortening (important step when dipping things), then dipped the cookies.

After shaking off the excess (into my mouth, wait, no. That's not right) I added three mini chocolate chips for eyes and a mouth. Set those little bad boys on a waxed paper lined baking sheet to set. Done. Super cute and super easy.

Friday, October 24, 2008

She's at it again!

GROSGRAIN MINI STORE OPENING NOVEMBER 6!!!!! AND BIG PREVIEW GIVEAWAY!!!! Her giveaways no know bounds! These are the absolute cutest skirts. I think I need an adult sized bird seed pocket skirt! Check her out, leave her love. Don't enter though, you'll take away my chances at winning! Ha!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Mary, Mary, quite contrary. How does your cellphone grow?

Apparently all it needs is a lot of rain and to fall into a planter! I could really be sitting on a goldmine here if this thing actually sprouts.

You know it's going to be one of those days when you realize your cell phone is missing, can hear it ringing, but just can't locate it. I got the twins off to preschool and had Pickles in his car seat on the way to the sitter. I realize my lifeline (also known as cell phone) isn't in my pocket. I swing back by the house and call it. I can hear a faint ring. First stop is the dishwasher, as that's Pickles new favorite place to put it. Nothing. Crap man! I gave up quickly cuz I'm a quitter like that.

Hey wait a second. When did that flower phone get put in? I didn't think my secret agent stuff would get here until I sent in all 72 box tops! Let down. It's just my cell phone. It had somehow made it's way into the planter outside. That's it, no more cooking with wine. Crazy things happen when I get all liquored up.
Speaking of liquor, check these babies out: . Ok, so these have nothing to do with liquor. I'm not so great at segueing from one topic to the next. This is one of those things that ya never knew you needed. Maybe you don't need them, but go with me here. Ya know those little cardboard sleeves they put on your coffee cups at Starbucks? Ha, those are for losers. These are much nicer. You know what they say? They say, "Coffee cup, I love you and want you to look fashionable."

Don't drink coffee or other hot beverages? You could also rock them like THIS!

Sweet! I always wanted to be one of those cool kids that wore wrist sweat bands. Lord knows my wrists sweat a lot.

I saw a bunch of patterns for these, but we all know I don't understand them. If you can understand crochet patterns, yippy for you. Here you go. Or, if you don't crochet but want one, look here.

Basically, I chained 35 (some patterns say 30, some 40) and connected into a ring. I double crocheted for 2 rows. On the third row I increased (double up in each single chain), so it would flare. 4th row, 5th, and 6th row, I only doubled up every 4 chains. See, I'm confused again. Stupid words. My advice is to read the "real" pattern. I suck.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Alarm clocks are for losers!

I slept SOOOO well last night, we overslept. Doh! Yeah, I just did the Homer Simpson "doh!" After getting my little devils to bed (by 7:30!!!!) last night, I was off to grocery shop. Most chill grocery shopping experience in a LONG time...nice. I even got to bed early! Pickles did wake up but not for very long. No snoring hubby, sleeping babies, oh the loveliness of it all.

When I finally did wake up (@7:19) I pushed hubby out of bed (now 19 minutes late for work) and made my coffee. As I sat and sipped my yummy cup of magic I thought about the things I should do with my "free" time since the kids were still sleeping. Laundry? Nah, laundry is for losers. Dishes? Ha! Hubby did them while I was grocery shopping! Clean? What's the point in that?? Craft? Ding ding ding!! A winner! All of you scoffing at my rationale can leave now...quickly, before I cut you.

I pulled out these little wooden hearts that I had painted for the girls a while back.

In a second you will actually see the date when I painted these. Yes, I'm a procrastinator, shut up. Anyhooo, I had done these thinking I would make them into a barrette holder for the eleventy billion clips, ribbon, and bows my girls have. Well, here is is two years later and they still just look like the above pic.

I got my handy-dandy glue gun and attached a ribbon to the back. I wanted it to be ribbed ribbon (not for your pleasure but cuz I felt it would hold clips better), but I've long since used that ribbon up for other things.

Ha ha!! The picture is too small, you can't see the date in the corner!!!! Put your magnifying glasses down, geez.

Here is the finished product. It could be fancier, but I like to keep things real, yo.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


This in no way, shape or form has anything to do with cooking, crafting, or baking, but man is it important! Who lives with a snorer? I DO! That man could wake the dead. I've heard tales of Marine Corps issued boots being thrown at his head whilst on deployment to shut him up. I tried that too, I don't think that he liked it very much.

Enter the Breathe Right Quick dissolve Snore Relief.
Holy crap! Those things are magical. I don't know if they're magically delicious or not (the yucky face hubby made when he placed it on his tongue suggests otherwise) but who cares?! He slept Q-U-I-E-T-L-Y!!! Nevermind that my peaceful night was ruined by Pickles and his waking up at least once an hour (stupid teeth). Anyway yeah, so if you have a snorer, throw down the $14 bucks and get these. You'll thank me later. I accept all forms of payment. Including, but not limited to chocolate, cash, and wine.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Fall has set in

We finally got a taste of fall weather down here. We took the kiddos to the beach house, for what probably will be the last time for the season. It was so beautiful.

I recently made my first attempt at crocheting a hat. I have never done anything more than crocheting the tops of tea towels so they can hang on a door, so this was big for me. I looked online at patterns, only to discover I can't understand the things (and I thought the Marine Corps had a lot of acronyms!). By looking at pictures, I figured out how to crochet in a round and from there I just figured it out as I went along. This is was my first hat, modeled for us by my lil' pickles (don't mind the chocolate cookie on his face):

On the car ride to the beach, I decided hubby needed a new hat as well. He hasn't taken it off his head since. Here are my two favorite men with their warm heads:
Here is my laymen's attempt at a crochet pattern for a hat.

Crochet in a round. Start by chaining 2-3 single chains (sc). Sc into one chain 6 times (After numerous attempts to properly photograph this, just look here). Now, into each of those 6 sc, sc 2. You will start to see a circular shape already! I just kinda guesstimated how big of a circle to crochet. I figured out the diameter by measuring the head around then divide by Pi {3.14} and subtract about 15% from that to make sure its snug. Ha ha! Didn't know you'd get a math lesson today did ya?!

Once I got the circle to the diameter I wanted, I just single chained around and around. I tried it on my test subjects as I got close to what I thought was the proper length and added or subtracted chains as neccessary. By the final few rows, I started decreasing. To do this, I simply skipped a sc about every 4 sc (sc 4, skip the 5th, sc 6, 7, 8, 9, skip 10 etc.). Who is confused yet? I am. See why I skipped the pattern and just tried to figure it out??!

They turned out pretty dandy and took very little time. On the car ride home I crocheted myself a pumpkin hat to wear for the next few weeks ! Fancy eh?!

I'm going to make pink hats for the girls and attempt to stitch a crown shaped pattern on it for them. Their heads look cold, do they not?!

Bow down to the amazingness...

Marie-Therese Gown GIVEAWAY !!!!!!! I know eleventy billion people have entered this giveaway but seriously, head over and throw your hat in. She is so talented. This dress is amazing. I commented that I wouldn't want to give it to the kids, but to hang it on the wall! Yeah, it's THAT nice. Feast your eyes on this:
Yeah, she MADE that and is GIVING IT AWAY!
Go check out her blog. Leave some love.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Downtown Arts Walk

"Come join us for the Downtown Arts Walk in beautiful historic downtown Thibodaux! Come enjoy and evening full of art, music, poetry, drama, dance choir, kids activities, author's row, roller derby, sax quartet, outdoor film series presentation of Charlie Brown's Great Pumpkin/Garfield's Halloween Adventure, food, drinks and much more!"

I lifted that from the city's website since, apparently, this event has no site or link. Really? Roller Derby? Was that just thrown in to see if anybody was paying attention? I just keep hearing that song, "one of these things is not like the other," playing in my head.

Anyway, this Arts Walk dealy-o sounds pretty cool to me. Plus, some of our super talented friends will be exhibiting work there! Weeee! If you're in the area, come hang out with me and the fam! Wow, that's a lot of exclamation points in today's post. My old English prof. would say I have diarrhea of the exclamation point.

Can't let the day go without a little craftyness! Am I the only one that saves glass baby food jars? I think not. You know you're out there. Anyway, here is a crafty little number for those:

EEeeek! Little Halloweeny votives!

Two quick things to point out: I am a horrible photographer, and the Mod Podge had not yet dried. Deal with those two issues then accept the utter cuteness. I had seen these lovelies in a magazine a LONG time ago, then saw them again over at CindyLou's.

Take some ModPodge or glue and smear that stuff all over the jars. Dig into your gift wrapping stuff and pull out some tissue paper or crepe paper. Slap that onto your ModPodged jars. Try to smooth out wrinkles and bumps, but careful not to rip it. Cut out little eyes, mouths, noses, whatever out of construction paper and make your faces. Glue them on. Coat the whole thing in ModPodge/glue to seal. Let them dry and drop a tea candle in there. Ta-da! You can also make pumpkins using orange crepe/tissue paper, but I didn't have any. Why I had black crepe paper is beyond me, but I did, so I made the cats. White tissue paper is like a standard item in my home so the ghosts were a no brainer. Happy Haunting!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I've joined a cult

I'm waiting on my black t-shirt, jeans, and Nike's to arrive (poor taste??). Kidding. But yes, I've joined the cult that is scrapbooking. I took a class last night for beginners with my two lovely friends (thanks for coming Katie and Alison!). I'm hooked.

A while back I noticed a new shop. The name, Scrapalicious caught my attention. I had always kinda snickered at the whole scrapbooking craze. It seemed lame and excessive. But, I went in just to browse as I often use scrapbooking materials for different crafts. There was so much PRETTY. That's what I'm labeling it as, just "pretty."

Oh how I wanted to take home all of the pretty last night (I succeeded in making off with a good bit). Nick, if you're reading this, stop now....seriously, stop. Yeah, I totally spent more than I anticipated but ding-dang!

Vera, the owner is a wonderfully sweet chick who was all about helping us newbies out. If you're in the area, go check out her store.

The thrifty Mary came out in full force this morning and I was checkin out ebay and the like looking for deals to expand my new hobby. So, I guess I owe an apology to all you scrapbookers. I am now happily a member of your cult. All hail the pretty!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Decorating the gir...oh look something shiny!

My attention span can probably best be described as that of a gnat's. Hey, keeps it interesting. This entry was initially going to show the trash can I decoupaged for the girls' bedroom. It just went off in all kinds of directions. There is no map for this blog, or as I like to call it, "Mr Toad's Wild Ride." Good luck.
I was in the twin's room this weekend cleaning (as per usual) when I decided I hated their plain white trash can. Plain is no good. So I fancified it (that is a word, I looked it up, nevermind what dictionary, read on).

This is the ugly old thing when I started. Gross, right?

I took some pretty paper, modge podge and a little ribbon and ended up with this

I know, I know

nothing grand, but hey, it looks a lot better then what I started with! I just trimmed the paper to fit, slapped some modge podge on there, then applied two coats over the top. I trimmed the edges with satin ribbon cuz that's how I roll ;) .

Moving on. As I was getting ready to post this, I looked over and saw my beautiful Boo Baskets and thought I should tell you all about them too. What is boo-ing you might wonder. It is simple really. You basically put together a little basket or bag of goodies, attach a note, put it on a friend/neighbor's doorstep then run like hell. The note should contain well wishes and instruct the recipient to keep the idea going. Instruct them to refill the bag/basket with treats and goodies and pass it along to someone else. See, fun right?! Here are my baskets (well, cauldrens actually)

I made little name tags that look like candy corns. I just cut the pieces out of colored cardstock and glued together
Head on over here to see another blogger's boo-baskets and her ideas on the subject.
P.S. If you see one of these cauldren's pop up on your doorstep, IT WASN'T ME!!! Tee-hee!
*I edited the original post down a bit. It was off in too many directions. Something about an accidental Barbie sunhat, crocheting in school pick up lines, and votives...too much. Another day my friends, another day.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


The Secret is in the Sauce site, which I just found today (thank you Skip to my Lou) is having a blogathon with giveaways! Serious giveaways folks! How cool is this. This site seems very cool. If you blog, I say hook up with these women. As I'm new to the blog scene I'm hoping to hook some followers, plus, who doesn't love comments?!

I found some cool blogs/stores while looking around over there: I'm definately gonna go broke checking out these aprons, smoochiefrog's blog is SOO up my alley, and Shannon at the Nuthouse. But I've only been there for an hour so I've got lots more searching to do! Yay!!!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Shenandoah Costume GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!

Shenandoah Costume GIVEAWAY !!!!!!!
Ok, I have time to add to this post now. I just found this woman's blog and MAN do I love the things she makes. What little girl wouldn't love to have a dress like this? Heck, I would love one. Go check out her giveaway and her blog.

Making butter!

Don't be intimidated by the thought. Put that image of me sitting out on the porch using a butter churn out of your head. No churn necessary. This took place in my kitchen while the kids ate breakfast. We start with a pint of organic heavy whipping cream.

Pour the cream into a bowl (use a standing mixer or if you're like me and no longer have a standing mixer due to a certain hurricane, use a regular bowl and a hand mixer) and get your mixer going. If you're using a standing mixer, you can do other things, this takes about 10 mins. If you're standing there watching in amazement, once you get to the whipped cream stage you start to wonder how this is gonna end up as butter. Fight the urge to stop and eat all the yummy whipped cream. Keep whipping.

I tell ya, it happens all of a sudden. Liquid ("buttermilk") starts flinging all over the place as butter clumps up. Pour the "buttermilk" off (reserve if you like) and beat a little longer, more buttermilk will seperate. Pour off. You want to remove as much "buttermilk" as possible to prevent your butter from going rancid. Pour some cold water into the bowl with your butter and knead out the "buttermilk." The water will cloud as the buttermilk is kneaded out. Rinse and repeat. At this point you're done. You have some lovely unsalted fresh butter.
But why stop there? Salted butter? Sure, add approximately 1/4 tsp. per 4oz of butter, beat or knead it in. Herbed or garlic butter? Add a clove of finely minced garlic and/or your favorite herbs. What about some cinnamon butter to go on those muffins you made for breakfast? Add cinnamon to taste.
Storage: if you have a french butter bell, use that. I don't have one, yet, lol. Because I'm not doing anything fancy with my butter this time, I just double wrapped it in pastic wrap and put it in the fridge. If you'll be using the butter for guests, put it in a piping bag with a star tip and pipe out individual amounts onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Pop that into the fridge or freezer to firm up, then seal in a container. Butter can be stored in the fridge or freezer.
Using one pint of cream, I ended up with 8oz of butter and 3/4 C "buttermilk."

Who here is wondering why I keep putting buttermilk in quotes? Well, take a swig. It will NOT taste like the buttermilk you buy at the store. Reason being, cream that is used to make butter in the traditional way is soured. As the cream sours, acids build up that aide in the churning process. The acids help the butter globules stick to one another. Since we're using electric mixers to churn for us, we don't need the aide of the acids.
What we're left with is more akin to whole milk. You can turn your "buttermilk" into a similar version of the cultured we buy in stores by adding a bit of lemon juice, although it still won't be quite the same. I, on the other hand, did what I felt my Mom would do: I drank it.

Put on a happy face

The girls are becoming increasingly more picky eaters. They used to eat EVERYTHING. They were used to gobble up anything I'd put in front of them, including strong flavored and "odd" things. People used to comment on how they couldn't believe the girls would eat some of the things we tried. Now that they're almost three, they've apparently decided they are only going to eat Mac N Cheese. Yes, they've become THOSE kids. How embarassing. While I do dress up the macaroni, adding roasted, pureed butternut squash (undetectable by 3 yrd old girls AND daddies!), I still feel like that is just not ok to eat for every meal, every day.

Along the way, I discovered the girls will, at least, try something if it looks fun. Slap a happy face on that sandwich and we're golden. I made them these pizzas. Not only did they love helping create the faces, they had fun EATING them.

Their favorite part was the black olives. The kids LOVES black olives. Can we classify them as a healthy vegetable, PLEASE?!

For the pizza faces, I used canned buttermilk biscuits, pepperoni, black olives, green onions and sundried tomatos (also discovered Kate's love for sundried tomatos). You can use anything you have in the pantry/fridge. Just have fun with it. Bake according to package directions. Serve with marinara/pizza sauce for dipping.