Tuesday, March 20, 2012


I've been teaching my girl scout troop how to do their family tree.  They all had an interest in learning about where they came from.

However, anyone who has ever done a family tree before knows it can be a lot of hard work and long hours. 

That of course makes kids lose interest and not want to keep going forward.

What better way to keep their interest up then to do a craft!

I'm having them all bring in copies of photos of their ancestors.  For this craft, you just need to make a copy of the picture on your printer and use regular paper.  Not photo paper.

The photo may need to be sized up or down depending on how big it is.

You want the face of the person to be about the size of a quarter.

Then you use a clear glass stone (available at craft stores) and cut the photo to fit the stone.   Place a small drop of glue on the stone's flat side and then spread it around with your finger. 

I used Aleene's Original Tacky Glue.  It goes on white but dries clear.

Place the photo onto the stone.  Don't worry if you can't really see the picture through the glue.  I promise it will dry clear and come just right!

Let it dry and then place a 2nd coat of glue on the back of the photo.  Once that dries glue on a piece of a magnet.  I purchased a roll of magnetic tape as it was only $1.00 and could be cut to fit a lot of stones.

Let it dry completely before you use it to hold up anything.

We are going to just make the stone magnets. 

You could make enough for your whole family tree if you like. 

This is a nice way for kids (and adults) to remember their long lost relatives. 

I was at Michael's yesterday, and in the dollar section,  I found these paper weights that had a picture of a flower on them.  I noticed they were really just the same as the small magnets I had made only bigger.

So, I bought one, took the back off and made my own paper weight with a photo of my relatives.  I think they would make darling gifts. 

You could even use, family pictures, vacation pictures, school pictures, baby pictures... the list is endless. 

I hope you will try to make these.  They are so easy and fun.  Oh and the best thing, they cost very little to make.

I've linked up with Show and Tell over at My Romantic Home.  If you have not been there you really should go check out all the fun.

Saturday, March 17, 2012


Last time I spoke about getting prepared for an emergency, I talked about making sure you have a good supply of food and water. 

Today, I wanted to talk about first aid.  You never know what what could happen during an emergency and so it's very important you have first aid supplies.

This week on the news, we heard about more tornadoes touching down, storms coming and Japan recently had another earthquake. 

In each of those cases, people were injured.  They needed first aid. 

Hopefully, you and I will never find us in a disaster like those.  However, it's always better to be prepared and not need it then to find yourself needing something and not having it.

The more you have in your first aid kit, the better prepared you are.  You can purchase a kit already made.

When you get ready made kits, you most likely will have most of what you need.  Just not a lot of any one thing. 

That is why I would rather make my own kits. 

I'm slowly building up a supply of items that may be needed.  But, until then, I do have a few ready made kits on hand.

Even smaller kits are better then nothing.  Plus, when you put your own kit together you can then use the ready made kits for your cars.  Everyone should have one in their cars in case of an accident.

Here are items recommended by the Red Cross. 

I think these are great items to start buying.  Once you get these items, you can get other things.  Think about what you would need if someone you know received a deep cut, a burn or a broken bone. 

You may not be able to call 911 to get help.  You may not be able to drive to the hospital because the roads are damaged.  It may be up to you to save someone in your family or a neighbor.

Everyone should take a CPR class.  You can always go to your local Red Cross for classes.  Learn what to do in an emergency.  Your knowledge could be the only thing standing between life and death of those you love.

Also, make sure you have a supply of your prescriptions in your kit.  Ask your doctor to write you a prescription for a month or longer.  Be sure you rotate them and check the date on all your items in your kit for expiration dates. 

But, if you should find yourself in an emergency and your supplies are expired.  Go ahead and use them if it's all you can do.  Most likely they will be fine and even if they lose some of the potency it's better then nothing.

This of course is only if you can't get medical treatment else where and it could be days or longer. 

Don't forget supplies for your pets too.  You never know if they may get injured.  Pets panic and get scared.  It's best to put them a crate if you can.  Even if your pets are like mine and hate being a crate.  It's better then having them run off or under something that could end up being dangerous.

No one likes to think about being in a disaster. Yet, it's always a possibility that it could happen to any of us. 

The more you plan and prepare now, the better you will be should anything happen.  Be safe, not sorry.

I'm going to post on emergency preparedness every weekend and share what I learn as I go from being 100% unprepared to as prepared as I can be. 

I say as prepared as can be because no one can ever be 100% prepared.   No matter how much you think you are prepared, you never know what Mother Nature has in store for us. 

Chances are, if you are prepared as much as you can be, you will most likely be OK should a disaster strike.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012


I wanted to get a little something, to give the girls in my Girl Scout troop, for Easter.  Not much.  Just a little something to let them know I was thinking about them.

I have 10 girls and so I have find things that are super cheap or it can start to add up to a lot of money by the end of the year.

I headed out to the Dollar Tree.  I found these cute little chocolate bunnies.  They are sold chocolate.  YUM! 

I knew right away what I was going to do with them to make them look a little less "Dollar Tree" looking.

I had some clear bags at home and also some little purple flowers and ribbon. 

So, I took the bunnies out of the boxes, put them in the bags, added some pretty pastel M&M's that were on sale at Rite Aid.  I got two bags for the price of one.  Gotta love a sale!

The M&M's added a little more color...and chocolate.  I wanted the bunny to be the star of the gift so I put most of the M&M's in back of the bunny.  That way, his carrots were still able to be seen.
I love the little flowers and think they add a little pop of color and what little girl doesn't love flowers?

So, for just a little bit over $1.00 each, I have my Easter presents for my girls.  I think they look cute and no one would know these were purchased from The Dollar Tree. 

I really like taking things out of their original package and putting it in a cello bag with ribbon and flowers.  It always makes the gift look a little nicer and it costs only pennies to do.

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Are you prepared for any type of an emergency that may happen near you?  Say, an earthquake, tornado, hurricane, terrorist attack or any other type of disaster?

I thought we were pretty well set here at my house.  We have an earthquake kit.  It has flash lights, batteries, candles, some water and food and things like that.

But, the more I read about things going on in this world, the more I see I'm not ready at all.

We always have a case or two of water that we drink.  But, we never had an actual supply of water that we saved in case we needed it.

We also never stock piled food, first aid supplies, tooth paste, toilet paper or other every day items.

It just seemed like we had some and since we have never had a major emergency here (thank goodness) we would always have to get ready later.

Well, it seems like weekly we are hearing of some type of storm, flood, earthquake or other natural disaster hitting some where.  Plus, there are always the threats of a big terrorist attack.  I also live near by a nuclear power plant, that not long ago, had some of us worried due to problems going on there.

I also watch that show on National Geographic called Doomsday Preppers.  Have you heard of it or seen it?

These people on the show are preparing for doomsday or end of the world, as we know it, times.

They have years worth food and water stock piled.  They have guns and ammo that could outfit a small army. 

To me, they seem to be going a bit over board.  OK more then a bit.  More like a lot over board.  But, who am I to say how much is enough.

We all know that any day we could have something happen that would knock out our food and water supplies.  We see gas prices going up and up and if it keeps on, soon the truckers won't be able to afford the gas and then supplies could run short or get so high we can't afford the.

A natural disaster could keep trucks, trains or planes from getting through and that would cause supplies to be very short and finally dry up completely. 

FEMA says we should all have at least 3 days worth of food and water.  Most experts say you should have much more then that.

I started today to stock up on some things.  You can see it's not much.  But just with what I got today, we have enough food and water to last us those 3 days.  We have breakfast, lunch and dinner and still would have left overs.

It's just me and my sister here.  But, I want to have enough supplies for the rest of my family too because I know they are not prepared at all and as of right now have no plans on getting there either.  So, we will have enough for them and they can come stay here if need be.

I've also joined a group that teaches you how to get prepared, what you need, how to survive without food, water, electricity, gas and even shelter.

So, as I go on this journey, I want to share with you tips and ideas of what I learn.

The first tip is what I did today.  On your next outing to the store, pick up some water and packaged food that has a long shelf life.  Start with a three day supply.  If you do that every time you go to the store, you will have a nice stock pile in no time.

You need at least one gallon of water per person a day.  Don't buy food that you have never had before or don't really like.  Get stuff you know you enjoy because if anything happens you will be very thankful you did.  Who wants to be stressed out and then find out the food you bought tastes so bad no one in your family will eat it.

Make sure you know what to cook with your supplies too.  If you buy 50 lbs of dried carrots, what are you going to do with them? 

Buy what you can, when you can and soon you will be ahead of 70% of the people around you. 

It seems like more and more people are seeing the world change with more natural disasters, the economy being so bad, gas prices going sky high and so on.

Because of this, more and more people are starting to get prepared. 

I say it's better to prepared and not need the supplies then to wish you were prepared should you need to be. 

Heck, if nothing else, you have a stock pile of supplies that you can use that most likely cost you a lot less then what they will cost in the future.

So tell me, are you prepared? 

Friday, March 9, 2012


Today was very warm out.  It seems like Spring is here! 

Of course when I think of Spring I thing of flowers and growing veggies so I can them.

Then it dawned on me, today was Tomato mania at Rogers Gardens in Newport Beach.  It's when they bring in over 150 different type of tomato plants and it starts the planting season.

I just couldn't hold back.  I got in my car and drove right there!

I love, love, love to go to Rogers Gardens.  It is always so pretty.  When you walk in you see nothing but beauty.  It's not a normal nursery at all.

They have got the most beautiful and healthy plants I've ever seen.  I adore how they display them as if you were in a lovely garden setting.  With water fountains, statutes, benches and more.

I fell in love with this planter that is in the shape of a heart.  Isn't it just darling!  You can buy the pot alone or already loaded with colorful flowers. 

I'm a sucker for hanging flowers.  But when I saw these wonderful baskets I actually gasped.  They are so unique and different. 

They have lots of flowers displayed in color themes and that makes it so pleasing to the eye.

Everywhere you look you see perfectly maintained plants for sale and believe me, you could walk around here for hours and not get tired of looking at things.

There is one thing you won't find at Rogers Gardens that you do find at most other nurseries though. 

What is it?  Dead leaves, flowers and withered plants.  Nope, each one is healthy and green.  Like they just got delivered.  They really do take wonderful care of their plants.

They also have a yummy gourmet section that is full of sauces, dips, jams, syrup and more.  I've tried several things here and everyone was so good.

It's a great place to go and pick up something different for dinner.

They also have a lot of cookbooks that you won't find in your every day stores.

I love the marshmallow one.  I wonder if they will become the new Cake Pops?
So, are you wondering what I bought?  Why tomatoes,tomatoes and more tomatoes!  After all, it's was tomato mania :)
I also got some herbs.
I got 8 different types of tomatoes.  I can't wait until they are ready to pick.  I'll be canning lots of salsa and sauces this year!  YUM!

I can't believe I forgot to take photos of all the tomato plants.  I guess I was to busy reading about all of them and picking out the ones I wanted. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012


The other day my friend sent me an email asking if I wanted to come and spend a fun girl day with her.  Of course, I jumped at the chance.

She told me she got a great coupon offer to go paint pottery.  Something I've never done before but, always wanted to give it a try.

When we got there we had to make a choice of what we wanted to paint. There were so many things it was hard to pick. 

We finally made our pick.  I thought "great, hard part over".  That was until we had to pick the colors we wanted to paint our item with. 

Oh my, so many to pick from!  The funny thing was, with all the beautiful colors they offered, both my friend and I picked the same three colors to paint with.  Guess we have the same taste.

I forgot to take a picture of my item before I started to paint it. 

I picked out a two piece dip bowl.  It's really neat because you can put ice in this part, then a smaller bowl fits down inside and that is where the dip goes.  Perfect to keep the dip cool for hours.

I love the inside!  This painting technique was so fun.  I had never seen it before and I'm glad I learned how to do this. 

I wish I took pictures of how this is done but I was so excited about doing it that I completely forgot!

It's done by taking water, liquid soap and paint, mix it up and then blow into it.  It bubbles up like when you blow into milk. 

As the bubbles over flow your cup you let it fall onto the piece you are painting.  Then leave it alone.  As the bubbles pop and dry it makes a really fun design.

I was going to paint the whole piece like this but when we tried it on the outside, it didn't work.  The bubbles just ran down the sides and made a mess. 

That is when I decided to paint stripes on the outside. 
I am not showing you the finished piece because I want to wait until it's glazed and fired first.  The colors will really pop and it will look like a finished piece. 

My friend painted a darling ice cream bowl and did the same technique inside her bowl.  You can see it better in this piece.

I won't get to see my finished piece for several weeks because I live over an hour away from the studio.  My friend will pick up our pieces when they are ready and then she will bring mine to me in a few weeks.  I can't wait to see it finished.

I had a really fun time today and learned something new even.  Got to spend a few hours with my friend, laughed and shared  in some deep conversation.  What a fun way to spend the day. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012


                                                                          photo source

I love to go to the movies.  To me, I feel as soon as I walk through the doors, find my seat and those lights go out, all the cares and worries of the world is left behind.  At least for a few hours.

For some reason watching a movie at the theater is so much more enjoyable then watching it at home.

I love the big screen, the great sound and even having others in the room while I watch the movie at the theater. 

I always have to get a diet coke.  Sometimes I get a snack or even sneak one in with me (shhh don't tell).  The snack isn't that big of a deal to me.  But, the diet coke... well I have to have a diet coke when I go to the movies.  I love fountain drinks so much more then out of a can or bottle. 

Today, my sister and I decided to head down the street to a local theater to catch a matinee.  This theater is small and more like the way they used to be.  The owner is there most of the time.  The staff is super friendly and the theaters are on the smaller side. 

It's not a theater I would want to see a big blockbuster in.  But, they mostly show independent movies here anyway. 

It is a nice neighborhood theater though and I always feel comfortable there.  Like they really care about you.  They will turn the heat/ac to the way you like it.  The popcorn is always fresh and with real butter.  They even offer you mints as you leave and wish you a good day/evening. 

We saw Iron Lady.  Have you seen it?  By now, everyone knows Meryl Streep won for best actress in this movie. 

I thought she really deserved it too.  She did a great job. 

Though to me the real star of the show was the make up artist.  Man, they did a super job making her look like the real Margaret Thacher.  When she was older, it really was like seeing someone else.  She did not look like Meryl Streep at all!

I didn't care much for the movie though.  It was a bit slow and showed to much of how Margaret Thatcher some what lost her mind as she got older.  Seeing her dead husband and living with him even though it was 8 years after he had died.

But, I still had a nice time and I only had to pay $4.00 to see the movie so that made it even better.

So, if you have seen it, let me know what you thought.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Remember the old saying "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again!"?  Well, that's what I'm doing.

I'm giving Weight Watchers another try.  I know it works.  I've done it several times.  Then I quit for one reason or another and I gain the weight back.

I lost about 50 lbs last time I was on Weight Watchers.  Then I got lazy and decided I could do it on my own and the next thing I know, it's almost a year later and I've gained 40 lbs back.  YIKES!

So today I went to a meeting, signed up, paid my money and got back on that scale. 

Rather then looking at it like I gained 40 of the 50lbs back, I'm looking at it like "Hey, I still am 10 lbs lighter then the last time I joined!".

I've been over weight my whole life.  Well, at least since my first birthday, I know I was.  I don't have any pictures of me before that.  Guess by the time I came along, the youngest of 5 kids,  pictures were not a high priority. 

Of course we didn't have cameras like today.  They were the cameras that took film, you had to be sure you not only had film in the camera but also flash bulbs.  Then you had to get the film developed,  wait about a week or so to get your pictures and hopefully some came out 1/2 way clear. 

Anyway, back to me being overweight my whole life, as a kid I was chubby.  Though back then I felt down right fat.  I was always the biggest kid in my class.  Though, I can't remember anyone ever making fun of me being fat.  I was not teased in school. 

I was however, always one of the last ones picked when it came to sports at PE time.  I would just act like it didn't bother me, but of course, it did.

Then there was high school.  I would kill to be the size I was in high school now, but, for a young teen age girl, I was fat.

I remember really hating having to get dressed for PE. At our school they color coded the shorts and swimsuits by your size. So everyone...yes, even the boys, knew what size you were. Talk about traumatizing!

I'll never forget I had dark blue. Very few of us would be out there with dark blue on. Most girls had black or green. Some of the really thin girls had red.

I'm so happy they no longer do this to young girls. Life is hard enough without having to prance around school in a pair of shorts that yell to the world "I'M FAT!".

I can remember doing Weight Watchers even back then.  That was when they made you eat fish a few times a week (I've always hated fish) and liver once a week.  YUCK!

They had some really silly recipes back then too because they didn't have all the low cal, low fat, low carb foods they do now. 

One I remember was a "breakfast danish".  You took a piece of white bread toast, then added some cottage cheese that was mixed with cinnamon and saccharin.  Then you stuck it under the broiler.  That was it.

Funny to think we used to think it was so good.  Little did we know.

Today there are so many really good foods out there that we don't need to pretend something is good. 

At my age, I really no longer care about what others think of me.  However, I do know I don't feel good being so overweight.  Plus, it's not good for my health and at my age, you think about your health more then teenagers do.

So, I'm back to watching what I eat, weighing in weekly, trying to get more exercise in and I know by doing that the scale will go down, down, down. 

Sure, I've been here before.  Many times.  But, I'm not going to give up.  I'm going to try, try again.

Sunday, March 4, 2012


I know I've been gone for ages.  Life has been super busy and I just have not had time to take pictures and post about what has been going on.  That, plus I've been rethinking about my blog.

The thing is, I cleaned out my garage last week and had a garage sale this weekend.  As I was getting ready it hit me and hit me hard how much stuff I bought.  Things I bought just to use for my blog and taking photos.

Dishes, dishes and more dishes.  Of course that means glasses, flatware, napkins, tablecloths and everything else that goes with it. 

Party supplies.  Boxes and boxes of party supplies that were used just for one party and then packed away.

OK, I admit, I love throwing parties and making everything just so so.  I'm sure I will still do that.

But, to buy dishes, just so I can join in on pretty tablescapes or to set a table just for some photos.  What was I thinking?

I often times feel like in order to have a fun blog you have to do what the "in" thing is right now.  If you don't, then no one will want to read your blog. 

I've spent way to much money just trying to keep up with other blogs.  I don't want to do that any more.  I'm not going to do that any more.  I can't afford to.

I love to go to thrift stores as much as the next person but I find I buy things that I like, only I don't have a place to use them or even store them so they end up in the garage.  Still in the bags and tags on them.  Then I sell them at a garage sale for pennies.

I don't want to stop blogging.  I started this blog as a way for me to look back on my life and see what I've done over the years.  It's changed over the years.  It got away from me.

So now, I'll post about my daily life.  Some may find it dull and never want to come back.  Some may find it fun and comforting to see they are not the only ones who can't or won't be keeping up with the Joneses. 

I don't have a thrilling, fast paced life.  I have a life where I'm happy.  I'm loved and I'm blessed.  I have a life full of family and friends that I adore and spend my time with.  My life is full of little girls that form my girl scout troop.  My life has two dogs that are spoiled rotten.  My life has very very little stress.  My life is mine.

I'm going to start sharing with you that life.  I hope you enjoy it.  I may only have a short post.  I may not say much of all.  But, I'll still be here.

I know I don't need lots of things.  I don't need to pretend to be something I'm not.  I can be me and still have a wonderful and lovely life.

I am crafty but I'm not like some of these women who have such talent they make you wish you could craft 24 hours a day. 

I love to travel, but I can't afford to go to some of the beautiful places a lot of bloggers get to go to.  But, I do live in So. CA and it's a lovely place right here.

I know I love seeing what day to day life is like in other states.  So I'm thinking some of you may like to see what day to day life is here. 

So from now on, what you see is what you get.  It's my life.  Come along for the ride.