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Thursday, January 20, 2011

And for dessert...

Oreo SNOW Ice Cream! Quick and easy recipe at Dirt Wont Hurt. The Oreo's were my personal touch! I cut this recipe in half because I didn't get a full gallon of snow. I used about 8 cups of snow. My first time to make this and all I can say is YUM!

*Tip: When it starts to snow, place a bowl outside to catch the snow for the ice cream.

Soup and Cornbread

I recently found a recipe that I wanted to try for dinner one night-Hamburger Vegetable Soup. Well, tonight was THE night. I am so glad I waited because today I got the recipe for World's Best Honey Cornbread and it was a perfect match for the soup.

Thanks to Crystal at Money Saving Mom I have two new recipes that will be making an appearance on our menu again very soon. Can you say...More Please!

*Note: I cut the ingredients in half for the soup because I was just cooking for two and we had a lot leftover. However, my husband likes a lot of meat. So next time I'm going to use the 2 lbs of ground chuck and cut the rest of the ingredients in half. Cornbread makes a lot too!

Happy 4 Months!

Yes, it is here! Katelyn is officially 4 Months Old!!! She is growing so fast and is keeping us amazed watching her grow and learn new things. Just last night she rolled over from belly to back for the 1st time! We were so proud! It had been a few days since I worked with her on it and she just casually rolled over while she was playing in the floor with her daddy.

Kevin got to witness the very first roll! I was so happy for him. She was so natural about it that Kevin didn't even know that was her first time. He said something about her rolling over and I thought she did with his help. He assured me she did it by herself, so I grabbed the camera and waited.

Here is a our video proof: (The second video duplicates the last few seconds of the first video. I will have to learn how to get longer videos in one clip next time.)

Katelyn's 1st Consignment Shopping Trip

Yes, I am starting her young-teaching Katelyn the art of Consignment Shopping. I took her down the road from our house to Fianna Hills Consignment Boutique Tuesday. The ladies were very nice and helpful. One lady, in particular, helped take some of the load I was carrying. It gets a little difficult to shop carrying a baby, diaper bag full of everything I could possibly need and then some, and a blanket. We had a nice experience and I am proud of what we were able to find.

When going to do any kind of bargain shopping, I make myself go into the store with the mindset of "we are only going to buy what we need, not just because it is a good deal." Living in a small house and being organizationally challenged, I am having to learn to not buy in excess, no matter how cheap it is. The less we have, the less we have to keep up with.

I am also learning that babies go thru clothing VERY fast. That was tough to understand. I am use to buying clothing for myself and being able to wear it for a few years. Katelyn outgrows stuff in just a matter of a couple of weeks giving me an even more desire to consignment shop. The clothing is much more affordable than full, retail price and hardly worn.
Our Finds:

Jeans-Baby PLACE
Brown/cream sleeper-Calvin Klein
Purple sleeper-Carter's
Pink sleeper-Old Navy 

Total I spent: $17.64...that's about $3.52 per item. YAY!

I did a little research to find out the full retail price of similar items. The price the items could have been: Jeans-14.50 a piece, Brown/Cream and Purple sleepers-20.00 a piece and the pink sleeper-14.50. That totals $83.50. Now, if they were on sale, as most of the time these items are, the cost possibly could have been around $60, when compared to similar items' sale prices.

Savings: Full retail price-$65.86 Sale price-42.36 (the total I spent includes tax)

I have to show the back of the Purple Sleeper...just too cute! I love ruffle bottoms.

I think Katelyn and I did a pretty good job!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Homemade Laundry Detergent Review

Yesterday, I posted my experience with and the recipe I used for making my own laundry detergent. You can check it out here. Well, I tried it out on two different loads of towels and washcloths. One load I used purely detergent, the second load I added fabric softener. They both came out smelling clean, but not a strong detergent smell. (If you want a strong smell, it was suggested to add fragrance oils to the mixture.) As far as softness, there was no difference. I am VERY pleased with the detergent.

I must warn you, as I was warned, there are no suds. In fact, when you put it in the washer you can't tell you have any detergent in there unless you feel the water. Then you will be able to feel the soap in the water. 

I purchased the soap and all other supplies at Yeagers. Some recipes say to use Ivory, in case you are unable to find it.

Additionally, on the back of the box of Borax there are several recipes for cleaning the rest of your house. The bar of Fels-Naptha has instructions for using it as stain pre-treater, so you might want to get an extra bar of soap for that purpose.

Hope this helps. I am greatly pleased!

Katelyn's 1st Snow 1/10/2011

All Bundled Up!

Funny Face!
She was trying so hard to put her hand in her mouth. Her body was going backwards and her arm wouldn't move because of her coat.

Monday, January 10, 2011

DIY Saturday

Project: Homemade Laundry Detergent

3 reasons why I did it:
1) Budget-friendly. I spent $10 on all 3 ingredients. One of the ingredients has enough for 19 batches and another ingredient has enough for 6 batches. One batch makes 5 gallons and in our home should last us 5 months. When you do the math, I spent about $2.78 on a 5 month supply of laundry detergent. This leaves me with a savings of over $45 compared to what we spend on the cheap brands.

2) Healthier. The detergent is said be great for those with sensitive skin. I know a family who HAS to use homemade detergent due to sensitive skin. Also, since there is not a bunch of chemicals, it is environmentally-friendly.

3) Cleans well. According to the reviews I've read, clothes come out clean and smelling great. The detergent is said to remove stains well.

There are many different recipes for homemade detergent, but all pretty much use the same ingredients. Some just have different measurements and some are for making powdered detergent. The recipe I am using is a liquid detergent and I found it and other homemade recipes here.

You will need: 5 gal bucket with lid, 1/2 cup of Borax, 1 cup of Arm & Hammer Washing Soda and 1 bar of Fels-Naptha soap.

Grate the entire bar of Fels-Naptha

Melt grated soap in 4 cups of water on stove.

Pour mixture into bucket with Borax and Arm & Hammer washing soda.

Stir. Fill bucket with hot water (I used the pot I melted the soap in to help fill the bucket with water so that it would get all the soap residue off and into the detergent). Stir again.

Cover bucket with lid and let sit overnight. Stir the mixture, fill empty detergent bottles only half-full. Add water to fill to top. Shake before each use. Use about half a cup of detergent per load (personally, I'd rather put 3/4 to 1 full cup). It is said to work great in HE washers as well.

I haven't used it yet, but will be giving a review soon after I do!

First Week of 2011

First taste of rice cereal!

Hanging out with daddy while he works at home.
(love these two)

1st Sunday of the New Year-ready for church!

Grandma came by and let mommy run some errands. Had fun with Grandma and Aunt Haley!

Hanging out with daddy again!

Sugar Bowl Party with her friend Tara!!!
(couldn't choose just one pic)

Katelyn's 1st trip to the library.

All in all, it was a great start to 2011-minus the cereal (we are going to wait a few more weeks).

Thursday, January 6, 2011

How we spent New Year's!

Unfortunately, daddy got sick. : ( So we stayed home taking care of him. Thankfully, it didn't spread to us. We did enjoy being together!

Christmas: Before, During and After

This is just a summary of our Christmas celebration in pictures (mostly pictures of Katelyn)

Katelyn's Christmas Tree

Katelyn in her Christmas dress for church-first time in Harvest Time nursery-December 19!

She turned 3 months December 20th!
Got the idea from my sister, Robin, to take a picture once a month on the same blanket to watch her grow in pictures. She is getting so big!

Took picture for her Pa-Pa on December 23. This picture, the Cowboys santa hat and a bag full of candy was Katelyn's gift to her Pa-Pa!

December 24 Christmas Eve and mommy and daddy's birthday! Took Katelyn to the mall to see Santa. This was her first trip to the mall!

Went to eat birthday lunch at Chili's and then on to Kevin's Grandmother's for birthday cake. This was our birthday celebration with Kevin's family.

Katelyn, her Grandma and the poof (inside joke)! Katelyn says, "Grandma, will you give me some of your hair!"

December 25-Christmas Day!
Katelyn was fast asleep while we opened gifts at Grandma's.

Katelyn's excited about her gift off of the gift table. Her little bib was a gift from my boss, Sue! So cute!

December 26th-Headed to Pa-Pa's for Christmas

Olivia was excited to hold her before her mommy, Robin!

December 27th-Went to the Monkey House with Aunt Jen-Jen, Aunt Robin
Kaylee, Eli, Calvin and Olivia!

Her first taste of a Dum-Dum...she thought it was Yum-Yum!

Back to Pa-Pa's for some fun family time!
Emily, Hunter and Katelyn

December 28th-Katelyn got special privilege to go with "the girls" for the annual girls' night out! No pics : (

She received lots wonderful gifts from all her family. She is so blessed to have so many people love her! What a great 1st Christmas for Katelyn Joy!