Showing posts with label Advice. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Advice. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Mom

I figured since I shared my gift ideas for kids, I might as well do a little window shopping for myself the moms out there.*

Just a heads up.  I tend to like more practical gifts.  I know lots of people complain about practical gifts but I prefer to get something that makes my life easier.  Yes, Sometimes it's really nice to get something that's just for fun but if it's one or the other I lean practical.  I guess the important thing is know the receiver and plan accordingly.

Monday, November 24, 2014

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Kids

As I am organizing my Christmas shopping list this year I thought I would share a few gift ideas in case any of you need some inspiration.*

Ideas for Girls

My daughter bought this guitar for herself with her birthday money and she plays with it every day.  They also make a keyboard that I am considering getting her for Christmas.

Dream Dazzler Stylin' Guitar

I do NOT recommend a microphone.  Also bought with her birthday money.  Do yourself a favor and avoid the noise amplifier!  She loves it.  I do not.

Monday, November 3, 2014

The World's Easiest Scrapbook - 2 Easy Steps

Having completed 31 days of de-hoarding, I am feeling overly qualified to dispense organizational advice.

You're welcome!

When the Peanut was a baby, I used to scrapbook.  During his naps I would pull out all the papers, stickers, embelishments, inks, chalks, pictures, etc.  I always had quite the scattered mess lying around and have quite a few half finished scrapbooks to show for my efforts.

As he grew and naps became less frequent, I had less time to work on these scrapbooks.  So, all the materials got packed away for "someday" when I have time again to complete the project.

In the meantime though I have kept all those little mementos through the years that should go in a scrapbook.  The problem is that they usually end up in some box or drawer somewhere, with no context to give a clue what or when they come from.

What to do with them?

It took way too long for the realization to hit me that a scrapbook doesn't have to be a Pinterest perfect project to be worth keeping.

Organizing and keeping those mementos doesn't have to be some sort of arduous task!

And so I created the World's Easiest Scrapbook for myself.

Friday, October 31, 2014

{Day 31} Mastery - 31 Days of De-Hoarding

Welcome to day 31 of 31 Days of De-Hoarding!!!

Did you hear that?  31 of 31.  As in.

The Grand Finale!!!!

I actually made it.  I de-hoarded my house for a whole month and it actually didn't kill me.

And today I am putting the finishing touches on my bedroom.

I Mastered the Master.

Get it??  Mastery?  Ha ha ha.

So, now I get to tell you that I have mastered this whole de-hoarding thing and I am the world's leading expert on de-hoarding.



How about I tell you a few of the things I have learned during this process instead?

Yeah, much better idea.

It's a ton of work.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Slab Leak Survival Tips

Now, I don't like to brag.  But after seven slab leaks, I am starting to consider myself somewhat of an expert.  So I thought I would share my expert knowledge with my readers.  Just in case you ever find yourself unfortunate enough to have to deal with a slab leak.  Or seven.
First of all, what exactly is a slab leak?

If your house is built on a concrete slab, then the plumbing is under the concrete.  First, all the plumbing was laid out, then the concrete was poured on, and then the house was built.  So if one of those pipes under the slab starts to leak, it isn't easily accessible for repair.

How will you know you have a slab leak?

If your living room starts to resemble a swimming pool, you might have a slab leak.  If you start to suspect a child or animal is frequently having accidents in the same spot on the carpet, but they only get wetter when you try to soak them up, you might have a slab leak.
If you notice a high water bill, you might have been especially thirsty that month, or your might have a slab leak.  If your water meter is spinning, it might be possessed, or you might have a slab leak.

How will you locate the leak?

Water is funny.  It can come up in your living room and you may suspect a leak in the kitchen because it is the adjoining room.  But you might find out the leak is actually in the bathroom located on the opposite corner of the house.  Water will come up at the lowest point.  It might come up in the house, the yard, or it may just drain away under the slab and you may never see it at all.

Plumbers will locate the leak by using equipment to listen for it under the slab.  Wherever the water sounds the loudest is where they will dig.  It's harder to locate if it's a slow leak.
How is it repaired?

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Want to watch Doctor Who? Where to Begin?

One of my lovely readers asked me this question and, because the answer is obviously too long and complicated for a comment box, I am dedicating an entire blog post to it. Also I didn't have anything else to write about today. Also I thought the rest of my three readers could benefit from my immense vault of Doctor Who knowledge.

Here is the question.
P.P.S. I finally watched Firefly and (of course) loved it. Now I want to learn about Dr. Who, but I don't know where to start. Do you advise that I begin at the beginning? What IS the beginning? I read somewhere that Dr. Who pre-dates the Christian Era, and I can't read cuneiform. (Seriously, how long has this show been on?)
First of all.  Firefly=Awesome.  Fox=Evil network that will cancel all awesome shows right when everyone gets hooked.  Totally not bitter or anything.
As a classic Who fan, I absolutely can not tell you to just skip to the new stuff.  There is so much history there and to really appreciate the new stuff you need to know where it all started.  To ignore all that would just be, well it should be criminal.  Punishable by being strapped down and forced to watch each and every episode of the classic series without a break.  Except that wouldn't be a punishment.  Except maybe the no break part.  Anyway.  It's bad.  Terrible.

Oh, you asked when it started?  Well the first episode, An Unearthly Child, takes place in the Stone Age.
But, don't you worry, the air date doesn't go nearly that far back.  You only have to go back to November 23rd 1963.  (The day after Kennedy was shot.)  Did I mention that Doctor Who holds the Guinness Book of World Records record for "longest running science fiction tv series"?

Ok.  I guess I can understand that, though you are obviously eager to watch the entire series from the beginning, it might be a bit difficult to accomplish.  #lotsofepisodes

Here is my suggestion for a shortcut.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Making the Bed

I know you won't be surprised to hear that I don't make my bed.

It's a habit I started back in my middle school days when I had a bunk bed that was in the corner of my room.  Trying to make that thing is pure evil.  That same exact bed is now in my daughters room.  In the corner.  Still just as hard to make.  Have you ever tried to tuck in a sheet while sitting on it?  Evil.

I have heard all the arguments about why making the bed is some sort of "necessity" but I don't buy them.

The "it just looks nicer and that makes me happy/inspires me/motivates me to clean/etc" argument.  Do what works for you but for me it really doesn't make a difference.

See, we have this fancy device on our bedroom called a door.  Once shut, the room disappears like magic.

I get up in the morning, leave my room and shut the door.  I usually don't go back in there much during the day unless it's to put away laundry (or let's be honest, dump it on the bed to put away later only because I can't climb into bed at night until all those clothes are put away.)  I just don't hang out in my room very much during the day.

I also don't show it off to company.  Hey, wanna come hang out in my bedroom?  That's something I haven't said in many years.  Because that would be weird.

Some people prefer to climb into a made bed each night but I am honestly not one of them.  It's one of the things that drives me crazy at hotels.  Those tucked in sheets that don't quite pull up far enough.  And they might as well be glued in there for all the good pulling and tugging and yanking will do.  Annoying.

Why would I want to replicate that in my own home?

I know what you are probably all thinking.  You know that if you don't at least sort of make the bed then that flat sheet gets all twisted and tangled.  It gets untucked and pulls up off your feet.  It gets scrunched up down at the bottom of the bed where you can't reach it.

My solution?

Ditch the flat sheet.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Decorating the Tree - A Mother's Tale

Mothers of toddlers,  I know right now it seems like you will never again be able to decorate the bottom half of your Christmas tree.

But do not despair.

Allow me to offer a glimmer of hope.

True story.

Once Upon a Christmas Past,

The Peanut, took a bite out of a glass ball ornament.  I was two steps behind him.

He was unharmed and remained unphased as I frantically and carefully removed shards of glass from his mouth.  Yes, frantically AND carefully.  That's motherhood in a nutshell.

Every year since then, our ornaments have moved their way further up the tree as the children have gotten taller.

Just when it seemed all hope was lost.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Toy Organization - FAIL

Jenn is being all helpful over at her blog and teaching us how to properly fold a towel.  Complete with video.

I have had the flu all week and my voice is doing the whole raspy thing so I will spare you the video.

But I thought I could teach you a little something too.

You see, awhile back I came up with a clever way to organize the kids toys.

Then I procrastinated for awhile.

Tried one way and it didn't work well.

Came up with a plan B.

And now I will show you my amazing system to organize and store the kids toys.  Something that will allow them to easily identify their toy storage so they can clean up their own room.

Too good to be true?

Let's find out!

I started with several cubes from the Target Itso collection.  I like these cubes better than the smaller cube shelf ones you see all the time because these are bigger.  Also the cubes are plastic and snap together easily and come apart easily.  This works well for us because we are frequently having to empty out the room when Gremlins attack.  Also they are more water resistant.

Fabric bins of various sizes and colors (Itso brand, the other brands are too small) work well in the cubes to sort toys into.
The problem is, all the toys end up thrown together randomly into the bins and then to find anything, everything gets dumped out creating a huge never ending cycle of mess.

Then I end up spending an entire day sorting toys into various cubes and trying to explain the system to two oblivious children who immediately go back to doing it the way they have always done it.  And all my sorting efforts are just wasted time.  Much like any other form of housework...

Obviously the bins need to be labeled.

But trying to write out cute little labels for the toys won't work well until my kids learn how to read.

I thought about little picture labels but they needed to be really specific for the kids to see what kind of toy when into each bin.

Pictures...  Hmm...  Oh, photos.  Right.  That could work.

But how to attach the photos.

My first attempt was to simply scotch tape the pictures to the bins.  That didn't hold.  The pictures ended up falling off and getting destroyed or lost.

Plan B.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Help! Save a Tree

Ya'll, I'm a notorious plant killer.  Those tiny plants I was growing.  Way back when.  Well, only one actually grew.

The Basil.

Being that it was the pretty much only thing I ever grew successfully.  I never ate any of it.

Because I didn't want to kill it.

So it grew taller.

And taller.

And taller.

And sicklier.

And sicklier.

And taller.

Until finally, while I was in the hospital having Matthew.

It died.
Possibly the world's tallest Basil plant.
Now, I have been given another plant.  And I am really really emotionally attached to this plant.
The Matthew Tree
I really don't want to kill it!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Top 6 Reasons Not to Clean Your Kitchen

As you probably are already aware, I an well renowned for giving life changing advice.  Readers all over the world flock to my blog seeking my wisdom.  Well, here I am again to tell you my top 6 reasons not to clean your kitchen.  You're welcome!

6. You just don't want to.  It's your kitchen after all and you should be able to decide where and how things are kept.  If you want to store a basketball hoop in the middle of the kitchen floor you should be able to do just that!  If you don't want to do dishes you shouldn't have to.

5.   You may make some rather disturbing discoveries.  Remember that box of food you packed when you moved from your apartment to your house?  It's still there in the corner of your kitchen.  Hiding behind other boxes disguising itself as extra dishes or appliances or something.  Recall the fact that you have been living in this house for over three years now.  You were just better off not knowing.

4.   You will start to experience delusions of grandeur regarding all the ways you can redo and reorganize your kitchen.  You will then start googling kitchen updates.  After several hours pinning your discoveries to your Pinterest boards, you will discover the necessity of creating a new Kitchen Board on Pinterest, to accommodate all your new pins.

3.   Someone may start to get ideas regarding your cleaning capabilities.  You wouldn't want anyone to start thinking that you might, in fact, be perfectly capable of doing the dishes on a regular basis, now would you?

2.  You might have to start cooking.  If the kitchen is clean, you will have one less excuse to avoid cooking.  Again, it could be assumed that, if you are capable of cleaning, you can certainly learn to cook. This assumption is quite mistaken.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

The Zombie Apocalypse is Upon Us & My Mom isn't Prepared

Wake up people!

The Zombie Apocalypse is not coming.  That's ridiculous.  You guys have been watching way too many B movies on late night television.

The Zombie Apocalypse is already here!!!

Don't believe me?

Check this out.

Now think about that for a minute.  When have you ever known the CDC to release preparation instructions before an outbreak?

Friday, April 29, 2011

How to Dress Like a Mom

Have any of you mothers out there ever found yourself out running an errand minus the kids?  I know in your dreams right?!  If this has happened on that rare and momentous occasion have you found yourself wondering if people automatically recognize your innate motherness.

Not so long ago I found myself out running an errand all by myself.  I'm still not quite sure how it happened.  It's still a bit of a blur but I am convinced it was no dream.

I found myself wondering if anyone would know from looking at me that I am a mother.

Then I looked down at myself.

There would be no question.

So for those of you who frequently find yourself being mistaken for young single ladies I have a few tips.

Here are a few ways you can ensure that never happens.  Follow my advice and you will always be recognized as a tired frazzled mom.