Friday Favorites.. (6/28/13)

It is time for Friday Favorite's yet again..

It has been a long week.
There have been some ups, and a down or two.. but overall it was a wonderful & blessed week.
I am definitely looking forward to the weekend.

Here are a few of my favorites from the week..

#1).  We got our DIY Fire Pit done and have really been enjoying it.
#2).  My DIY TALL Solar Lighting that I placed around our new fire pit.. they worked perfectly!
        Love projects that turn out better than I had hoped they would.. :0)
#3).  My daughter had a campout/sleepover and they enjoyed swimming and drying off afterward by the fire.
#4).  We got our new dining room set of furniture all arranged how we wanted.
        (more about that coming soon)
#5).  Loving Lemon Layer Dessert, I made it again without adding the cup of sugar this time..
        it was just as good. :0)

linking up at:
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DIY Tall Solar Lighting for your patio or deck

I decided I wanted some taller solar lights for around our Fire Pit patio..

I made a quick video making these tall solar lights.. I can't believe it has been 6 years
since I first did this project!   It was time to update this post with a short and simple video diy!

So I came up with the idea to make them taller.. so when I was in the store I picked up some
inexpensive solar lights (.97 cents each) and went to the craft department to check out the dowel rods.
I took out the stake from the bottom of the light, and tried different sized dowel rods in the end of the solar light, to see which fit the best.  Half inch size was perfect.
(also .97 cents each)

So I bought them, took them home, and placed the dowel rods where I wanted them.
I Spray painted the dowel rods black,  then simply placed the Solar light on the top of the dowel rod.

for less than $2.00 each, I have some unique and fun decorative accents that also light up to enhance our new outdoor space.  I ended up making four of them and placing them at the furthest corners to kind of frame the seating area. 

So Happy with how they turned out.

and a quick before to the after pic..

Thanks for stopping by.

linking up at:
DIY By Design, Brag about it, Brag about it @ BeBetsy, Nifty Thrifty Tuesday,
The Scoop, Inspire Me Tuesday, Flaunt it Friday, Remodeloholic,
Ivy and Elephants, Transformation Thursday,
Think Tank Thursday, Pin Junkie,  I Heart Organizing,  Project Inspired Link Party,
Tips Tricks -wreath, Show & Share

Sprucing up the Yard #5.. DIY Fire Pit

June has been a month full of outdoor projects..  which I am sure will continue along
throughout the summer.

We have been wanting to get a fire pit for some time, and we finally got around to it in the last
couple of weeks.. and we basically spent zero dollars to do it.
Yep, zero.

Here is the before spot that we picked out for it.

We previously had an above ground pool in this spot.. you can probably see the circle
where it use to be, so that became the perfect spot for it.

Sprucing up the Yard.. #4 Simply using spray paint

This was just an easy update to some accent pieces I already had..

Here is the before photo of our large flower pot near the back deck.
I decided the spinner and the plant picks needed a pop of color. :0)

Can you see the little wire butterfly plant picks?

Here is a close up..

Now for the after Spray Paint photo's..


What a difference a little spray paint can make in just a few minutes.

Friday Favorites (6/21/13)

It has been a busy week around here.  Lots of projects, lots of housework, lots of
errands, lots of working outdoors.. and on & on.. :0)

However, here are my top 5 favorites of the week..

#1). A Makeover - Garden Bench style..  what a difference a little paint can make.  You can see
        the before and after HERE.

#2).  My painted & distressed Mason Jars.  Love the antiqued shabby look they have.

#3). Yum... Chips n Chicken Casserole.

#4). Coffee.. and more coffee.. and even more coffee.

#5).  Drivers Ed is officially over, and my daughter is ready to go shopping for a keychain. :0)

       linking up at:

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DIY using Mason Jars as Candle Base or Vase using spray paint

Spray paint..  that is a must have item these days in my stash of craft supplies.
You can quickly give something a completely different look and it is rather inexpensive.

Another must have item.. Mason Jars in all sizes.

So why not mix the 2..
I decided I wanted to use some of my Mason Jars as a candle base, but wanted them to
look distressed or shabby.. and give a little color.

So I got some spray paint, in different shades.
(the one above is a very pale pink, I also chose white, and gray)

Sprucing up the yard.. #2 ( Garden Bench )

I have been working on some different outdoor projects and "Sprucing up the Yard" as I have been
calling it..

I decided to break out the paint.
Project in mind.. The Garden Bench, and it was long overdue.

Nothing says come sit a while, and enjoy the beautiful outdoors like that wonderful
welcoming bench that looks like it saw it's better day, many years ago... right?   not so much.  :o)

Friday Favorites... (6/14/2013)

Time to share some of my favorite things from the week..
#1). It is Friday - Wa Hoo!
#2). Decorating projects that literally take a couple minutes.. like my Curly Ribbon accent. (if you can call it a project.. :0)
#3). Giving my Wreath a quick and easy new look!
#4). I shared a little on how we prepare for severe weather with a Grab n Go bag.
#5).  More flowers starting to bloom! 
Have a great weekend!
linking up at:
High Five For Friday

Our grab n go bag for severe weather

With the Storm Season upon us..
We try to be as prepared as we can when severe weather is possible.

We were in another town running errands a couple weeks ago.. when the weather quickly took a turn, and I took these photo's with my IPhone. 
All looked fine, we went into a store and within a few minutes when we came out of the store, this is what it looked like.  

That is a Kansas sky..

Needless to say, we cut out trip short immediately.. and we left for home.

We try to be as prepared as we can when they are calling for severe weather possibilities, and I thought I would share a little with you today on how we prepare for it.

So in our preparation..  I keep a bag pretty much ready to go at all times.. We don't have a basement, but we do have an underground storm shelter in our yard..  So that is why I have a bag ready to go and try to keep it near the door on the days there are chances for severe weather/tornado's.  
(if it seems likely we may have severe weather I usually add a few things to the bag)

What I keep in our 'grab n go' bag..

-bottled water
-toiletries  (toothbrush/toothpaste/floss/soap and so on..)
-first aid kit
-extra clothes
-portable solar powered & crank weather radio/flashlight

I also mentioned that I add a few items to the 'Grab n Go' bag on the days that we know we have a chance for severe weather..   that way it is all ready!

Here is what I generally add to the bag on those days:

- Tablets (Kindle Fire/IPad)
- My Camera (& sd cards with our photo's)
- Cords/Chargers
- our family handbook (which has our important info in one spot)
  other items we might take would be: snacks, games, portable dvd player/movies, batteries, etc..

We also get our storm shelter ready on these kind of days.. and do a quick spider check. :0)

Our kids usually get a bag ready to 'grab n go' as well.. loaded with their portable electronics and whatever else they want to take.
We usually put the bags inside the shelter if it starts to look bad out, or the weather is getting bad nearby us.

However, we always have foldable chairs in our shelter, as well as a lamp, small tv, and a weather radio.   Because let's face it, we may not always be aware of the storm risk, and may not have the time to even get the 'grab n go' bag..   Which has been the case in the past, therefore we usually try to put the bags in the shelter early on when possible.

I also try to always let other family members know when we are going to the shelter.. and we keep each other posted on the weather situations.

How we stay alert is by keeping an eye on the weather and our weather radio's.
We have one in the house which will alert us whenever any severe weather is around,
and then we keep another one inside the storm shelter itself.  (as well as a portable hand crank/solar powered one that I keep in my 'grab n go' bag - which doubles as a flashlight)

We also recently signed up to receive text alerts on our cell phones, and that lets us know if there are any severe weather watches or warnings posted for our area... which is nice when you aren't at home or near a weather radio/tv..

It may seem a little extreme to some, and perhaps minimal to others.. we have been through some scary severe weather in the past few years and we didn't have to time to grab anything when it occurred.  Thankfully, we only lost a couple of barns through it, and only had a big mess to clean up..  but because of that experience we certainly try to be better prepared and better informed, and when possible place bags inside the shelter early on.

Hopefully our family will never need to have those bags in the shelter,  but when we are faced with being in the shelter.. we will have something to pass the time (games/movies/etc) and something to keep us informed (phones/radio's) as well.

So do you have a 'grab n go' bag for bad weather situations?  If so, what do you keep in it?

Sprucing Up the Yard #1 - The Wreath

I have decided to start working on the yard a little here and there..

Project #1.. my front door wreath.

Here is the before..

While I like the wreath, it had seen it's better days..  The berries had become somewhat faded
from the sun and I was ready to change it up.

So I decided I would just spray paint it and see how that worked.. and I decided on 'royal blue' to
add a pop of color.

After it was dry, I decided to add some gold.. and got my Gold sharpie marker and outlined the tin stars.. and gave a couple of them  polka dots for fun.

Then I hung it onto the door..

So much better, but I wanted to add another touch to it.. so I placed a small U.S. Flag into
the center of the wreath..

Love it.. 

linking up at: Coastal Charm, Motivate Me Monday, CraftOManiac,
Inspire Me Tuesday

Friday Favorites... (6/5/2013)

It's that time, time to showcase a few of my favorite's from the week..

#1).  Celebrating my daughter's birthday and it was a beautiful day to spend some time outdoors!

#2).  My Quick Clean Up Challenge, The Purse Edition, and I also let you know What's in my Bag.

#3).  Our Fishing Trip that we went on.. (also in celebrating my daughter birthday)

#4).  Loving Lemon Dessert..  Yum!

#5).  My DIY Decorative Candlesticks which added a fun Americana Accent for my tablescape.

Have a great weekend!

linking up at: High Five For Friday

Decorative Candlesticks.. Fourth of July (5 minutes or less)

With the Fourth of July coming up soon, and basically using that for an excuse to change some d├ęcor up..  :0)   I decided to add a fun decorative touch to my glass candlesticks.

So I got my candlesticks, red candles, and picked out some decorative scrapbooking paper in navy blue with white stars print, as well as my paper cutter, and adhesive.

After a few minutes, I had a neat new accent.

This is a super simple and fast project..
Basically I got out my supplies...

What's in my Bag?

I recently showed you my 'Quick Clean Up Challenge - Purse Edition'...

Today I am going to show you, what I actually carry in my bag. :0)

I will start with the outside..
I keep my IPhone in the outer slip pocket for easy access.. that is pretty much all I put there.

Now for the inside:

Since I don't use the interior slip pockets for my Phone, I use them for other
small objects that I don't want lost in the bottom of my bag.
 (such as gum/lotion/pens etc.)

Now for the list: :o)

- Wallet
- Small Notebooks
- Gum
- Business cards
- Cosmetic case (contains: mirror/lip balm/hair bands/brush/iphone cord/ etc.)
- Nail Kit (nail file/nail clippers/etc.)
- Keys (with tiny flashlight key chain and small tape measure)
- Hand Lotion
- Eye drops
- Small Flashlight
- Ink Pen (not shown)

Other items..
 I almost always carry a band aid in my wallet..even though I keep a first aid kit in my vehicle, hey ya never know when ya might need a band aid.  I learned this early on as a mom.. :0)
A small pocket knife/nail file combo thing.. comes in very handy for opening those awful plastic packages when someone is impatient with a purchase. (such as: batteries)
My tiny tape measure key chain.. gotta have that!
A few family photo's. (just because) :0)

So that is the majority of what is in my bag, besides the normal necessities: checkbook/debit card/fem. Products/blah, blah, blah...

I also occasionally toss in my smaller digital camera (depending on what we are doing),
my Ipad,
and I try to take a bottle of water with me as well to avoid purchasing soda or something on the go. :0)

That pretty much sums it up..
Have a wonderful Wednesday.

Loving Lemon Dessert..

We just celebrated my daughter's birthday and we always let the birthday girl or boy choose
their food items for the day..

For her dessert she wanted Peanut Butter Balls.. and a Lemon dessert.

So here is the Lemon dessert I made for her...


2 pkgs cream cheese
2 sticks of butter
2 Tbsp Coconut oil
2 cups flour
1 container of whipped topping
2 pkg's of lemon pudding
3 cups Milk
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1 cup sugar

First I used a pastry cutter to cut in the sticks of butter, and coconut oil.  It will become a
crumbly mixture.

Then pressed it into a 9x13 glass baking dish, and baked at 350 for around 20-25 minutes or until lightly golden brown.. let cool.

Then I beat the cream cheese (which I had on the counter for 30 minutes or so to soften up a little) and sugar together until creamy and spread that over the crust.

Next I whisk the pudding, milk, and lemon Juice together and poured over it.

Lastly add the whip topping.

Place in fridge until set up, and ready to serve.

It was a big success.. 

I think the next time I make one of these desserts, I will cut the sugar down when I add the cream cheese mixture layer in.. or take it out altogether and give that a try. 

I also think this would be really good changed up with another kind of pudding.. butterscotch, choc., vanilla, banana,  you get the idea. :0)

Could also add in nuts.. change the crust to graham crackers or crushed cookies - lots of possibilities
with this one.

I tend to change recipe's often... add this/take out that.
How about you? 
Do you follow recipe's to a T, or do you change it up?