Sunday, February 12, 2012

Valentine's Day Cards

Handmade, Homemade Classroom Exchange Cards!

This year for Valentine's Day I put my brain to work trying to come up with a unique cards for my kids to exchange at school. Candy seems to be aplenty these days and after throwing my sons birthday party in December and seeing kids actually leave candy on the ground after breaking a pinata because they had enough, I knew I had to start providing things that were not candy based (and this is very hard for me to do.... I have an enormous sweet tooth).

So with the munchkins in tow we paced the the aisles at Target. I wanted to make sure it was still a Valentine they wanted and had some input in creating. After some debate and discussion (yes, with a four and six year old....sometimes I think I'm nuts) we came up with two Valentine cards that the kids are stoked about and helped create!

Sophia's Bubbles

A month or so ago I ordered personalized ribbon from Pick Your Plum with a heart and Sophia's name on it. I knew I wanted to make some sort of Valentine with it but wasn't sure what. When Sophia saw these bubbles at Target and had to have them, I was stoked!

Colin's Sports Cards

Colin's pre-school Valentine's were a bit more difficult to come up with. He was overwhelmed with the concept, he wasn't sure what I meant by making Valentine's (it's his first time) and he can't make a decision to save his life on a good it took some time to come up with a concept. Standing over 25 different cards at Target at 4pm as we were all needing a snack and juice (coffee for me), I was doubting my decision to let the kids decide and really wishing I would have just bought some plain cards for him to write his name on. When he saw a bag of bouncy balls and I caught a glimpse of some sports related paper cards...were were suddenly in business. I bought some tiny treat bags in the baking aisle at Hobby Lobby and used a stapler to attach everything. The picture isn't so great...but they turned out pretty awesome and Colin keeps saying over and over that he can't wait to give them to his friends! SCORE!

Hope you enjoy these homemade V-Day cards and that they inspire you to create something unique this year or next!


Sunday, October 30, 2011



Lit Fest Magazine is part of a feature being done this week on an awesome blog for writers: Writers In Business...The Business Side of Writing. Brigitte Thompson, author of Writers In Business is a freelance writer, author of multiple books and accountant who runs an accounting firm in Vermont.

Head on over to Writers in Business and learn about the Lit Fest Magazine and Crazy Moms Everywhere giveaway which runs Sunday, October 30 until Saturday, November 5. This gift bag is truly one of a kind, perfect for everyone! It includes over ten items, most of which we talk about on these two blogs constantly. Such as waffle mix, an unbelievably amazing stuffed monster every kid loves, children's books, cook books, and much much more!

Learn the guidelines and rules over at Writers in Business and enter today! SO AWESOME!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Grown-Up Drinks!

One of my favorite things about the Fall Season is the yummy beverages. I have always despised apple juice, but love hot apple cider and look forward to it all year. I only drink black coffee but can be found sipping a Pumpkin Spiced Latte on a couple occasions in October and November. I'm always looking for a new fall beverage and today after messing around in the kitchen I came up with an idea.

Sobieski Cinnamon Vodka is amazing. I mixed it into a Coke and it taste spectacular. Then I had another idea. Why not put a tiny bit in some hot apple cider! Score! Cinnamon Apple...Amazing! A great beverage to sip with your feet up after the trick or treating is complete and the kids are snuggled tightly in bed!

Last Minute Halloween Snacks!

I LOVE HALLOWEEN! I get into it. I make snacks, I make gift bags, I visit many, many costume stores. I make chili, buy tons of candy and get dressed up EVERY, SINGLE YEAR! I ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY LOVE HALLOWEEN!

Yesterday I had planned a little get together for my daughters class at the park. It was a half day of school and I thought it would be a great time for moms to get to know each other as well as have the kids play without all the restrictions of school. Plus here in Phoenix it's been 100+ degrees until a few days ago....finally we could play outside, NO MORE indoor playrooms! YAY!!!

Then suddenly an hour before I was heading to pick up the kiddo and meet everyone at the park I realized that even though this was a last minute thing and I had told everyone to bring a picnic lunch, I should have some snacks and some sort of drinks just in case. Plus it was a few days before Halloween.....I had to do something fun!

Problem...I had ONE HOUR. No way to make my usual ridiculous overblown Halloween cupcakes!  I ran to Target and got thinking. I filled a drink container with ice and orange gatorade, grabbed some stuff to make a Halloween snack mix and some cookies and candy to make a silly little cookie thingy! Ta-dah! Yummy, Halloween snacks!

HALLOWEEN SNACK MIX: Popcorn, Candy Corn, Peanut Butter M&M's, Pretzel Sticks.
I put little brown lunch sacks next to it, with about four inches cut off so it was more snack and kid size. Everyone had a great time filling up their bag and eating their favorite parts of the snack mix.

WITCH HAT COOKIES: I saw a few different versions of a cookie like this over the past few weeks and thought it was a great treat the kids could help prepare. The kids went nuts for it and with the awesome Pillsbury Easy Frost Orange Halloween frosting these were even easier to make. Grab the Keebler Fudge Stripe Cookies and Hershey Kisses and you are all set.

You now have easy snacks you can buy and prepare in less than an hour.

Fairy Cupcakes for the Princess

My little princess totally shocked me when I asked her what type of cupcakes she would like for her 6th birthday. She looked me in the face and announced....FAIRY CUPCAKES MOM!

My little munchkin has tons of interests. Last year she wanted pink and purple cupcakes with guitars. She loves princesses, singing, dancing, dolls, flowers, butterflies, anything colorful and imaginative but she has never much interest in fairies. At this moment I still have no idea what brought this on other than the fact that the girl sitting next to her at school is going to be a fairy for Halloween. But whatever the case, I took off for the cake decorating store with fairies in mind!

I walked up and down the aisles and before long had a plan. Fairies in the Garden. They had flowers and butterflies and little fairies as well. I grabbed a a frosting tip to make grass, I figured this could be kinda fun!

I had to make some cupcakes with grass and some with dirt because my baby girl LOVES chocolate. She asks for marble cupcakes every year so some would have vanilla frosting and others a delicious chocolate and cookie crumble. YUM!

This was the final result!

Poor Little Sickie: Chicken Soup

My husband never gets sick. He never ever ever gets sick. So when he does actually get sick about once every other year its usually pretty bad. After two days of feeling terrible for him I usually whip out the hardcore meds.....homemade chicken soup. It works every time. This time it worked so well Mr. Man was feeling a million times better the very next day (which is a big deal because he was really sick!)

The best thing about this recipe is the ginger which in itself is a great thing when you're not feeling so hot. Another added bonus is how incredibly simple the recipe actually is. I ran to the store in the morning and had soup made before noon...woot, woot!


2 tablespoons olive oil
1.2 small red onion, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tablespoons ginger finely chopped fresh ginger
2 32-ounce containers low-sodium chicken broth
1 16-ounce container low sodium chicken broth
1 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped
3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped
3 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1 medium turnip, peeled and chopped (1 1/2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 2- to 2 1/2-pound rotisserie chicken
1/2 cup frozen peas
4 scallions, sliced

1 cup pasta (penne, ziti, or orecchiette)


1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, and ginger and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes.

2. Add the broth. Stir in the parsnips, carrots, celery, turnip, and ½ teaspoons salt. Bring to a boil.

3. Reduce heat and simmer until the vegetables are tender, 15 to 20 minutes.

4. Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside.

4. Meanwhile, using a fork or your fingers, shred the chicken meat, discarding the skin and bones.

5. Add the chicken, peas, and scallions to the saucepan and cook until heated through, 3 to 4 minutes.

6. Add pasta to the finished soup and serve in individual bowls.


Well I was doing really well with my TRY SOMETHING NEW EVERYDAY thing but then suddenly things got way too nuts around here I couldn't post everyday. I was doing new things I was really excited about and looking forward to posting but then I was one day behind and then two, three, fours days! I couldn't keep track of what I had done and posted and when was what....OIY! Welcome to Mommyland! Sometimes I try to do way too much and this time it all caught up with me.

By the way, in the midst of all the chaos I was the chairperson for my daughters kindergarten class project for their annual school auction fundraiser. We made a book that all the kids participated in and it turned out amazing. We also painted a bookshelf which looked adorable. All the kids put their thumbprints in a tight row and we made it into a caterpillar. It was awesome! We raised a ton of money so some of my Looney Toons craziness lately was worth it!