Poor Hercules

Poor Hercules

Meet our Family Pup! Hercules! Poor Little Guy Hurt his dewclaw. Cleaned and bandaged up, the youngest boy is now carrying him all over the house!

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Sweet Morning! Strawberry Almond Overnight Oats

I learned a while ago that I am in LOVE with overnight oatmeal. I eat it cold, I eat it hot, I Love it.

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I don’t know if it is because…

A. It is in a cute little mason jar

B. It is because it is really good for me

C It is super easy to whip up and only dirties one container

OR

D. ALL of The above.

Ever had the pleasure of making and enjoying overnight oatmeal? I first learned of this great pleasure from a blog called They Yummy Life. There are so many different combinations that you can whip up, I usually do a few different flavors when I am prepping them, as they will last in the fridge for quite a few days and I do not want to eat the same thing over and over. I also have to say, that I have made them with Greek yogurt and without. I tend to prefer these without.

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My recipe for this particular flavor, Sweet Morning! Strawberry Overnight Oats was made with the lovely idea to use leftover homemade Strawberry Jam. Since I have been making these for awhile, I no longer follow any type of measured out ingredient list.Once you have made these a couple of times you can see what your jar may need more or less of.  I now just throw what looks good into a jar and wait until morning. See EASY. I even got my Dad to like this one, I believe he has made it on more than one occasion. I’m proud of that!

Sweet Morning! Strawberry Almond Overnight Oats

1/2 C Old Fashioned Rolled Oats

1/2 C  Vanilla Flavored Almond Milk

1 Tbs.  Chia seeds

1 t. Crushed Flax Seeds

2 Tbs. Homemade Strawberry Jam

Small hand full almond slivers

Shake up, leave in fridge over night.

When you wake up in the morning, your breakfast will be ready to eat. Grab a spoon and run for it, or heat it up in the microwave for a minute. Either way, it is one of the best things that I have found for breakfast!

What flavors will you come up with!!??

Enjoy your next Breakfast! Over and Out!

2 Words. PIZZA WAFFLE

Last night, I was strolling through Pinterest… that one place… where I go and don’t get seen for awhile. How many of you have been sucked in? I am trying to come up with a way to make a meal plan for my family, my main goal is to get us completely free of red dye and all other processed foods. Anyway, I came accros this little gem from Shutterbean. I tell you pure genius. I read her blog title, and I was hooked. Pizza Waffles?!?!?! I knew I had to try them, my children LOVE to dip anything! So tonight here it goes I am going to try out these Pizza Waffles. 

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Mix Dry Items First

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I didn’t add enough waffle mix, but it still came out nice and crispy!

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I followed the recipe except, I personally do not like pepperoni. I switched it out for ground chicken sausage and I switched the 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese for a 1/2 cup Pepper Jack Cheese for some spice. 

 Source: Slightly adapted from Shutterbean

Makes 6-7 waffles

2 cups all purpose flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano

1 1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes

3/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 cup shredded mozzarella

1/2 cup grated pepper jack cheese

1/2 cup finely ground chicken sausage

2 large eggs

1 1/2 cups milk

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

Marinara for Dipping, I used some homemade that we had from leftover Spaghetti

In a medium bowl mix all of your dry ingredients, whisk until well blended. Add cheese, meat, and other “toppings” of your choice. Possibilities are endless. Coat these as it will allow them to not stick to your waffle iron. Add your wet ingredients and fold together, be careful to not over mix. 

Oil waffle maker and add about a 1/2 cup of mix.

Dip in Marinara and enjoy! 

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I can tell you that these were a HUGE hit in my home! What a easy dinner!

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I also made extra to stick in the freezer for a night where I fail to plan. Which I am getting better at, but more on that later! I am almost ready to post my work done on our new Meal Planner project! 

For Now, Over and Out

Have Hope. 

Super Duper Diaper Owl

I received word, and a very, very cute invite in the mail.  Wanting the perfect present, led me to preparing a gift for my cousin’s Baby Shower! I am super excited for her, as she is even more excited about having her first baby!!  We do not know the gender, as they have decided to have it be a surprise. I am hoping that what I have crafted goes with what she likes. The invite was this very cute owl, and she made it herself!

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                                                                                                    So CRAFT TIME!
I am the type of baby shower participant that likes to buy gifts for the mom to be, not the new baby. I know sounds bad… right? BUT I try to purchase items that mom may like and has not had the time or may not find the time to buy for a while. I also purchased items off of the baby registry, I am lucky that some of the items fit right in with my imagination. I have been thinking about how to make this owl for some time. It has been done before, you may search Google for diaper owl, but I like to do things on my own… So here we go.
Supplies that I used…
A base (something for the owl to sit on), this can be anything. My cousin asked for a Humidifier, so it was the perfect size for a “tree”.
1 Large Paper Bag
2 brown bag lunch bags
1 Spool large ribbon
1 Spool small ribbon
2 Chap Sticks
2 Foot lotions
2 pieces of round brown wood
Orange craft paper
Tape
Scissors

I also used 4 links out of the Bright Starts Lots O Links for the owls feet, this item was also on the registry, lucky me!!
Make the Owl Body and the Eyes.
Owl Eyes and Body

Owl Eyes and Body

I rolled 10 diapers around lip balm for the 2 eyes and secured them with ribbon.
For the body I tightly wound diapers, until I felt that the body was large enough to go with my eyes. Then I tied them with ribbon as well. If you have a helping had it will go faster when tying, however with a little work you can get it!
I then attached the eyes to the body with weaving the ribbon through both until they were secure.
My wings are 3 diapers layered together and taped down with duck tape
Beak is a piece of orange construction paper, cut and folded secured with orange duct tape.
The eyeballs are made by 2 wooden balls hot glued to the bottom of the lib balm.
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IMG_1809  The next step was the tree branch, I had bought the mom to be foot lotion and foot soak, I just rolled those tubes up into a paper sack, easy tree branch. Then I slid the toys around the lotions for the owls feet.
Final steps were to cover the main gift, which was a humidifier that the mom to be had on her registry. I covered it with a  large paper sack ad drew a tree knothole. My grass was a hand cut piece of green paper, and the flowers were some paper flowers that I had found.
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FINISHED PRODUCT!!! 
What do you think?? I was so happy with how every thing came together! So cute! 
Another thing that I do, is recycle my invites in to the card that I give to the recipients of my gift. I always love the look on their faces when they see that I took time to use what they had been proud to have made or given as an invite. It is a great way to save on you resources as well, if they used it as an invite they must like it. So here was my Congratulations card back to my cousin.
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Off to hug and Kiss my Kiddos, time to tuck them in!
Until Next time!
HAVE HOPE

How did I get into Advocare… One Word…

SPARK!!

It was about a year and a half ago that I was offered a sample of spark, I was HOOKED! I then decided to do a 10 Day Cleanse, after GREAT success, I have now been a distributer for about a year. What I liked about the 10 Day was the fact that it is NOT one of those drink and don’t eat type of cleanses. It truly cleans out your body so that you crave good healthy foods instead of cookies, carbs, and unhealthy foods. I LOVE the products that I have been lucky enough to have been introduced to! I have decided, that because I have had such wonderful things happen since starting Advocare that I would like to get it all documented. I have people ask me all the time about tips, food, and what I am doing. I feel  like this can be a place to see first hand what I have done. So if you are here, THANK-YOU!

As you read, if you have ANY questions please ask! If you would like more information on how to order product please go to my personal website for Advocare! Here’s to a Happier, Healthier 2014!

Here are a few of the meals that will be posted very soon

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Rite-Aid Reunion

I have not been into a Rite-Aid in some time, so naturally there had to be a reunion at some point. I have taken my father under my wing, in the area of how to save money with coupons. I assume, because you are still reading that you too have some interest in the topic of saving money!! I am going to start posting my savings and some of my trips to the stores. I am HOWEVER not a total coupon-a-holic and do NOT hardly ever do these in multiple transactions. I would say I dabble in coupon usage, enough to save, not enough that it will make the customer behind you start tapping their foot. There are some in-depth bloggers that are out there who do just that and you can learn more by checking out their bolgs! So Please Journey with me?

Recent Reunion at Rite-Aid

I had see in the January paper that there were some great ways to earn +Up-Rewards, basically cash back on a rewards card that you can use the next day in store on ANYTHING you want! Yep, awesome. So I went in to Rite aid, I did not have any coupons for these 3 items, so I  ONLY bought  these 3 items.

Estroven Mood & Memory, 30 ct $11.00 Buy 1, Receive $11.00 Up Reward, Limit 1

Estroven Maximum Strength, 28 ct $16.00 Buy 1, Receive $11.00 Up Reward, Limit 1

AND

I-cool+D, 45 ct $24.00 Buy 1, Receive $24.00 Up Reward, Limit 1

My Out Of Pocket (OOP) Expense was $55.44 I Received $51.00 on my +Up Rewards card to spend on ANYTHING in the store.

SO, Today I went back to rite-aid and used one of my +Up Rewards to Purchase what I needed for the house!

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As I shop, I keep a total in my head and I knew that I had 3 different reward coupons to use, one for $11.00, one for $16.00 and one for $24.00. I choose to use my $16.00 one, a couple of other coupons that I had clipped and Viola!! I paid $2.00 Out Of pocket for all of this. That was the tax!! I saved a total of $20.74.

What have you saved on today!? I will post my next shopping trip, However to you, YEAH YOU!! Thank-you for reading my rambling! I will get better at getting the rules and what to do at the cash register in future posts! For now.

HAVE HOPE!

Good Night!

BOO-Thday Party Celebration

Many conversations with my 3 year old led to this genius party!

He and I talked about what Disney character or other theme he would like his Birthday to be. I start early and ask each boy a few times before they actually have their party, in case they change their minds, which they do about ten times. Canaan decided on a Halloween theme, all on his own. He wanted people to come over in costume so that he would not know who they were for the party. Pretty great since I, as acting decorator, did not have to buy a thing! Talk about frugal!

We had the house decorated already…Some people do a Christmas Village. At our house it is a Halloween Village. The boys love it and for no reason that I know of, I do too!

Next up the invites…  I made these in the Halloween spirit, supplies were already on hand from years of gathering. I was going to make Halloween cards just to send out to family saying Happy Halloween! Yea! Didn’t have to leave the house or spend money! Score! And they turned out pretty cute!

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A special Thank-you is needed here,to my Dad and Mom who are always willing to help with my crazy food ideas with little or no complaining! Yes a Smurfette/Batman cake did happen!! All thanks to my folks loving me… but more on that party later!

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Frosting a Frosted cake?

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I think she may have found a BUG!!!

 

Now on to my MOST favorite part, of all the party’s that we throw! FOOD! I love theme food, I don’t know why but it is really fun for me to make. I believe that it can really jazz up your gathering without a ton of fuss. (Especially if you hire out family members to help!!)

Ghost Cheese sticks, Reminds me the video game Pac-Man for some reason!

Ghost Cheese sticks, Reminds me of the video game Pac-Man for some reason!

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Great find during Halloween Clearance! Easy Veggie tray turned Roach Hotel!

             As a family we have been trying to STAY on track of our HealthiER eating so we decided to try                  and not stray far from good healthy choices for our guests. I believe that most of the party attenders                   were happy for these healthier options, I know that we didn’t end up with a ton left as other parties that I have thrown with lots of goodies.

Close up of our BUGS!

Close up of our BUGS!

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Bloody Band-Aid
Graham Crackers, a dot of cream cheese, and a dot of red jelly.
Super Cute Turned out Awesome!

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Spider Eggs!
Healthier Tip:
Use Plain Greek Yogurt in place of Mayo.

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Apple Teeth with Caramel Apple Dip
(This was one of the last items that we made on day 2! I think that my crew was wore down)

And the Last item for tonight… I have made this cheese ball recipe for YEARS!!! It is a easy yet very tasty dish that anyone can try! Layers of basil, sun dried tomato, and cheese. Very Tasty!  How I made the Brain!! Recipe to be posted SOON!I used a brain Jello mold that I picked up on clearance last year to shape! You can find these almost every where during October!

THE BRAIN

THE BRAIN

For now I must go! I have 2 boys, both of which want me to go play! More about the FOOD tomorrow! Thank-you for reading! I have had such fun making these parties a special time in our family! Post the rest of the food tomorrow! Until then!

Have HOPE

The Financial Freeze

This is one of my very good friends! Give it a read, the family has decided to try a Family Financial Freeze!

Just Jen

I decided to do something that some may seem a little extreme for this week that bridges the old year and the new…I am putting my family on a week of a Financial Freeze. We aren’t putting our credit card on ice or burying the cash in the back yard, but we are having a spontaneous freeze to our spending. I didn’t plan it, I just decided to do it yesterday morning.

My plan started when I looked in my cupboards and I saw a ton of food. Some had been there awhile. I thought, “Why haven’t I used that?”. Then I looked in the fridge. Literally leftovers from Christmas were still in there and it is the 30th of December. If they don’t get used now, they won’t get used at all and then the food will go bad and I will automatically suffer my own guilt for being a greedy…

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New Year, New Hope

2013 Going, Going, GONE.

Wow. Now that was fast! I have many fond memories of the year 2013, and as we leave it behind I carry with me HOPE into 2014.

I have HOPE that I can be a better person.

I have HOPE that I can be a better communicator,

I have HOPE that I can be a better teacher,

I have HOPE that I can be a better listener,

I have HOPE that I can be a better Mother,

I have HOPE that I can be a better Sister,

I have HOPE that I can be a better Daughter,

I have HOPE that I can be a better Friend, Coach, Wife, Mentor, Chef… and on, and on, and on!
I HAVE HOPE! 

I do not know what the new year will bring, however I do know that I would like to live with less. Less clutter, less fear, less stuff, less anger, less hurry-up, less mess, less failure.

To do this,  I believe that I need to leap into this new year with HOPE. I will not make a New Year’s Resolution, (I do not want to start the year with pressure) I will start the new year with a focus on having a open mind and heart and let in what needs to be heard.  So HOPE. There is hope, HOPE that the people around me see a change for the better, HOPE that my children see me changing to become better, and HOPE that I allow myself the time I need to make these changes.

WHAT are your HOPES for 2014?

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