Friday, March 29, 2013

Natural egg coloring using RED WINE

The kids colored eggs yesterday bright and vibrant colors. I colored an egg also. Mine was colored with one of my favorite beverages red wine. 

Simple as can be I took the egg and placed it in a cup of wine. Let it sit about 20 minutes and it came out an awesome red orange. I am super proud! 

Have you tried to color Easter eggs in non traditional ways? What is your favorite egg color or decorating technique? 

Oh California I sure do miss you!!

I am a California girl born and raised. I did move away for a short time for college, I didn't go fat though... Las Vegas!! Anyways back to my point. I am a California girl or at least I was until I left everything I knew for a simpler life in Tennessee (my parents moved there I followed yatta yatta long story). This may will be 6 years since I left my home land and for the first time I have having serious withdrawals! I miss my home, my life, the atmosphere, my friends and family. I miss California. 

So in honor of everything I am missing I thought I would share some photos with you that remind me of who I am or at least who I once was. 

Huntington Pier! 

I use to work at the Starbucks next to this Bob's located in Toluca Lake. 

My car wash Burbank. Okay it's not "mine" but I use to get my car cleaned there! 

Joshua Tree National Park! 

Thursday, March 28, 2013

It’s okay Thursday!

Is it really Thursday already! Easter is just around the corner meaning Spring break is almost over. Sadly, all my plans for a great spring break went out the window when most of the family got sick! But it’s okay!

to teach your kids the truth about Easter! It is after all one of the most important days in Christianity!

to be tired of diapers! Seriously, its been six years I am so ready to be done! 

to be more than overly excited for the hot hot heat Alabama has in store for me in the coming months. 

to admit I am kicking butt at working out and getting in shape! 

to want to go Vegan but just not be ready to make that commitment! 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Pillow mats

For Christmas this year I made pillow mats for my 3 nephews. I found all sorts of tutorials on Pinterest but nothing that I thought was that great. I wanted to personalize these mats and make them totally awesome! Each of the mats I made are completely different and have my nephews names stitched onto it. (my wonderful friend Lyn helped me with this part!)

I originally planned on writing this post around Christmas when I actually finished the pillow mats. But then my computer was struck by lightening and I lost a lot of stuff!  Including my how to pictures for these awesome mats :( 

So I am going to try to explain the process without pictures. 

Materials (to make 1):
Sewing machine
two twin flat sheets (one sheet can be used however you will just have one color mat)
4 over stuffed standard size pillows

Okay now for my steps:

  1. Cut the sheets length wise
  2. pick your color combination and sew the finished sides together. This will create a large piece of fabric that can be folded length wise (kinda like a letter)
  3. After sewing the top and bottom you will continue to sew horizontal lines creating 4 pockets for your pillows (the pockets will be like sham pillow cases)
  4. Insert pillow!

Monday, March 25, 2013

co-sleeping kinda

I have been described as crunchy or a natural mamma but co-sleeping has never been my (our) thing. Sure we have woken up numerous times with one, two or three children sharing our queen bed with us, but we have never “co-slept” in its full sense. When our babies now 5,3 and 2 were little I always liked the idea but couldn’t get past being scared. And when my husband was deployed my then 4 and 1.5 year old spent most nights with me but those times were more out of circumstance. 

Flash forward a few years welcoming baby number 3 who is now 2. As I talked about in length here Cooper had a rough start. He entered into our world a bit underdone and subsequently spent some extra time in the hospital. He has always been a difficult sleeper waking up randomly during the night just to turn the light on or play. I have actually woken up to every light in the house on from this little man. He usually makes his way into our bed by the middle of the night. Now after months which have turned into years we have decided to bring his toddler bed into our room. 

Although we wont be sharing in any of these fun sleeping arrangements we are co-sleeping kinda. 

We finally decided to make the move to benefit the whole family. Cooper was waking everyone up at all hours with the lights he was turning on. And we figured he would be more comfortable and sleep easier next to mommy and daddy. 

Last night was the first night with Cooper in our room heres how it went: 
The little man went to bed perfectly. My husband laid him down around 8 and he fell fast asleep. He stayed in his bed until I got up for some water around 3 where he joined me in the kitchen. After a few big gulps Cooper went right back to his bed and slept till morning! Both of the older two are still sleeping! This could be a great thing! I truly loved having my "baby" closer to me. 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Life changing for the better!

A few months back I posted that I had received a scary and life changing diagnosis. It has taken me a while to write this post. I haven’t blogged about my diagnosis yet. I don’t want to down play its importance, I wanted to educate myself and needed to take the time to realize my life was changing forever. I am not dying, I didn’t get something that was going to kill me today but if I didn’t change my life TODAY it would kill me eventually. 

Your life can change any day. It can change today for all we know. I was in disbelief when I went in for a check up back in January. 2 days after my 27th birthday I went to the doctor for a check up it was a fun one blood urine the works. For a while doctors have been monitoring my blood pressure. The last few time I had been in it was higher than normal especially for someone my age and general health. Then we did some more tests and other fun stuff. I left the doctor with the diagnosis of Hypertension stage 1 and prehypertension. (my systolic pressure averages around 150 the normal would be less than 120 and my Diastolic 85 with normal under 80). Need I remind you I am only 27 years old. Commence freaking out on my part. 

There are 5 main causes of high blood pressure: excess alcohol, kidney disease, increased consumption of salt, overweight or obese and family history. 

Although, I am (or was when diagnosed) slightly overweight (about 10 pounds) the only cause I have is Family history. My father was diagnosed when I was a kid he was in his 30’s. I remember when my parents told us we were scared, we tried (and failed) at not stressing him out. I remember him having to take medication. I decided early on that I wasn’t going to take medication at least not yet. I was going to combat this the healthy natural way! 

So lets flash back post babies and marriage. Growing up, during college and after I was always fairly active playing sports and running. I can remember being at my lowest weight 137 just months prior to getting pregnant with my oldest. (keep in mind I am 5’10’’ so thats pretty skinny) Back then I ran 3-4 miles every morning for fun!!! 

Flash forward 6 years and 3 babies. I was working out maybe 2-3 days a week half heartedly and eating what I wanted. * What I wanted wasn’t all that bad we don’t eat much processed food, we stay away from preservatives, eat organic and about 60% fruit, veg and grains. 

Since my diagnosis I have made some big changes. I now work out 5 days a week. But more than working out I have completely overhauled my eating. Sodium is now to a minimum with less than 2300 mg daily, cut out alcohol, eliminated all hydrogenated oils and margarine, we eat brown now (only 100% whole wheat and brown rice) and I am now a vegetarian. 

Let me say this I feel GREAT! I have been on this new track food and diet for 2 weeks and I have lost 10 pounds. But more than weight loss like I said I feel great. We need to LIVE TO EAT not EAT TO LIVE. 
When I first received my life changing news I was scared I’m not gunna lie. Now I find it empowering! My life has changed, my health has changed, I am changed for the better. I truly believe this is a blessing! 

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Sleepless nights creates lack of concentration

Why am I so interested in whats happening on My Little Pony? I’ll tell you why... It has been a rough start to the week. I’m not going to lie I have had little motivation to get going in the morning. We have had one sick kiddo after another. Last night I clung to the side of the bed while my 5 year old made her sneezy, coughing, booggery self comfortable. My husband slept like a baby! ERRRR being a mom. 

On a way happier and more positive note I made the most delicious treat this morning. Banana oatmeal cookies

Banana oatmeal cookies

I keep seeing these really yummy looking recipes on pinterest for cookies that only have a few ingredients. And for a while I have shied away from them with the thought that how could something so simple actually taste good. The other morning I got a random early morning text from my neighbor and friend about oatmeal banana cookies that in her words were amazing. Intrigued I asked about what all was in them. Simple 3 ingredients quick oats, bananas and chocolate chips. Easy enough!
I have to say they aren't quite cookies but I am not sure what else you could call them other than delicious. To me they taste like banana bread. They are totally kid approved also. 

I made some changes to the recipe making it my own. I replaced the quick oats with rolled oats and added some flax. Now brace yourself this may be the easiest cookie recipe you will ever try.

2 ripe or over ripe bananas
1 cup oats
1 table spoon ground flax (optional)
1/4 cup chocolate chips (optional)

I mashed the bananas and oats together with a fork then mixed in the flax and chocolate chips. Bake for 15 minutes at 350. Seriously it's that easy. 

Friday, March 15, 2013

Spring Printable

I love spring it is in fact my favorite season. And its only a few days away! 

A kick butt soccer game and the truth about the Easter bunny.

I am going to start this post with a bit of totally awesome news!!!! Payton is totally rocking soccer. I just needed to find her motivation. Apparently, it was different than mine. When I was a kid and into my High school years my dad would have to yell at me get me mad and I would ROCK! It totally made me more aggressive. I know weird but hey thanks dad you made me a better player. This does not work with Payton she likes things... Before her game last night I told her if she scored two goals I would get her something special... SHE KICKED BUTT!!!! She scored twice, she was super aggressive, she actually ran, she was defiance, she asked for the ball, I am one proud mama. Not that I’m not always proud but I could tell she was putting in 100%! So we went out and got ice cream! 

Then I found out this happened...

My husband went on a walk the other day she asked him about the Easter bunny and he was honest... 

My husband actually told her there was no Easter bunny and explained the real reason we celebrate Easter. Part of me wanted to kill him. Seriously, I was so so mad! I called him at work I gave him a piece of my mind then I got over the shock and then the bigger part of me totally understand stood . She's five I get that, and I totally want her to live a great childhood. Does it have to be filled with lies? And where does it stop? I am not ready to talk about the big man in red. But I don't agree with the Easter bunny.
What is a good age to explain these lies to your kids? Is it fair to let them find out from other kids? Where do we draw the line? 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Berry scones

I’m about to be real honest here... I LOVE SCONES. It’s not that I think scones are okay, I LOVE these amazing treats. Scones are so versatile all the delicious flavors mmmm I am seriously making myself hungry. 

Growing up I don't remember ever having a scone. It sounds like something my parents would like but I just don't remember eating them... We were a big cereal family. 

I remember when and where I fell in love with these bad boys. During college I started working for one of the best companies out there Starbucks Coffee Co. And man oh man did they have some delish scones. My love only grew from there. Now not to knock what the Sbucks has going on but homemade scones are by far the best I have ever had. 
Here you have it the recipe for my delicious fresh berry scones(you can totally use frozen):

Monday, March 11, 2013

A beautiful weekend!

I dont have too much to say about this weekend other than it was fabulous! We played mini golf, road go carts and roasted marshmallows! Honestly, I'm not sure you can get much better!

Friday, March 8, 2013

Hello sun!

One of my favorite days of the year is accruing in just a few days! Come on March 10th!!! 
I realize many people see Spring forward like this....

I am not one of these people! I love what this one less house leave us with. I love the sun and its longer days. I love the warm weather that is on its way. 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

It's okay

This week has been a overwhelming. I wish I could say that being one day from the weekend would make things better. Sadly even the weekend cannot get me out of my own head. 
The week hasn’t been all bad Payton’s soccer team won their first two games!!!! 2-0 Whoop whoop proud mommy here. 

Okay on to it...

It’s okay...
... that a bus stop full of kids stared at my screaming child for 5 minutes. Then proceeded to tell me what was wrong with him. just want said screaming child to be quiet. miss high school. be so excited for a trip that is months ahead. be unsure of what to think or how to react when someone from your past walks back into your life. 

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

New baby shower invitations!

Check out my easy shop...

Leibster love

Leibster Award!

Leibster, (Leibste) meaning kindest, dearest, beloved, cute, endearing in German.
Well, thank you...I haven't been called so many nice things in quite some time. 

The Liebster Award is a blogger to blogger, peer award, used to highlight up and coming, smaller, lesser known blogs that are less than 6 months old and have less than 200 followers. Liebster is an award that you accept with an intention of paying it forward. 

I was nominated by Amy at Commona-my house. Amy has a lovely decorating blog that totally appeals to my sense of style. I am grateful and honored to have been nominated by her. Thank you, Amy.  

When you accept your Leibster, you must pay it forward and nominate other bloggers that you would like to award. 

So, here are the guidelines for the award:
1. You must post 11 random things about yourself.
2. Answer the questions that the nominator set for you.
3. Create 11 questions for the people you nominate.
4. Choose 11 new blogs you love and link them in your post.
5. Please leave me a comment on this post with the URL to your Liebster post so I can learn more about you!

My 11 random things:
1.  I hate catsup 
2.  Totally FREAKED out by cream corn
3.  I once peed in a urinal (not an easy task)
4.  I HATE math not all math just the math that has letters
5. I miss High school
6.  I wore the same bright yellow running shoes for 10 years
7.  We had a burn and burial for these shoes
8.  Favorite band Journey
9.  I’ve had the same best friend since I was 12
10. The first 8 years of our friendship we fought more than we got along
11. I love gardening! 

11 questions that Amy from Commona-my house has set for me to answer:
  1. What is your dream home? My dream home is a place with 5-10 acres where my family can live off the land (as much as possible)

  1. What is your favorite song and why? Proud to be an American by Lee Greenwood, for me this song brings back strong memories. As a kid I remember standing on the side of the highway waving a flag welcoming home returning soldiers from Desert storm Lee’s moving song was always playing in the background. 

  1. Who is your celebrity design alter ego? (ex: Nate Berkus, Martha Stewart, Holly Becker @ Decor8, etc). I totally aspire to be like most of these wonderful people especially Martha (except the whole prison thing) alter ego I wish. 

  1. What is your favorite blog post you have ever done and why? Hmm... A few weeks back I posted a letter to my daughter titled Dear Payton. This post was perfect in the moment and expressed how much I truly adore my beautiful little girl. 

  1. What are 3 of your favorite blogs and why do you love them? 1. Natural mama- I am a little bit crunchy and totally proud of it! I have learned so much from Genevieve. Blissful and Domestic, Danielle is an amazing mother and homemaker. I am in awe of her ability to stretch her tiny budget into a comfortable life. SAHMaegan, I’m not so sure how to explain this one... I just love what Maegan writes. From the first time reading her I was locked. She also reminds me of my aunt. 

  1. How long have you been blogging and why did you start? I have been blogging since August. I decided to start a blog as a way of self expression. I tend to keep my emotions and feelings to myself my blog has helped me open up to the world. 

  1. "I'll ----------- if it's the last thing I do". Have a mini farm where we grow the food that feeds our family. 

  1. Best vintage or decor find of all time? I found a beautiful Queen Ann  style buffet for $40 on craigslist. We painted said buffet navy and now use it for our TV. 

  1. What is a home trend that you have tried/followed that you've regretted?
Painted drop cloth window treatments... (they just didn’t turn out how I wanted... the paint made them stiff). 

  1. Who is your favorite author? I am a sucker for anything Nicholas Sparks, his love stories get me every time. 
11. Favorite Pattern? ? good question.

Blog LOVE time
11 blogs I nominate:
  1. April @ Cheatham chatter 
  2. Jackie @ City Girl Finding Her Place in the World
3. Kelly @ walkin on SUNSHINE
8. Rachel @ Everyday simple 
9. Labrijoy @ Reality Strikes Mommy 

11 questions for the nominees to answer:
1. What is your dream home?
2. What is your favorite song and why?
3. Who is your celebrity design alter ego? (ex: Nate Berkus, Martha Stewart, Holly Becker @ Decor8, etc).
4. What is your favorite blog post you have ever done and why?
5. What are 3 of your favorite blogs and why do you love them?
6. How long have you been blogging and why did you start?
7. "I'll ----------- if it's the last thing I do".
8. Best vintage or decor find of all time?
9. What is a home trend that you have tried/followed that you've regretted?
10. Who is your favorite author?
11. Favorite Pattern?

Nominees: Please leave me a comment below with your Liebster post, so I can read up on you!

Can't wait to read your posts!!!
Thank you again Amy this is a great honor for me and Sweet Pea Pod!! 
I'm honored to be a Leibster!

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Burlaps burlap {a table runner FAIL}

Right? All burlap is created equal. NO! It's not! Not all burlap is the same. A sad lesson I learned. One day a while back I was busy super busy studying Pinterest. I found some too cute to pass up projects using burlap. I was in love. So later that week I took a trip to Hobby lobby and bought 4 yards of the only burlap they had.

My first project a table runner. Not only was this project inexpensive, it was easy to do, took just a few minutes to complete and was so cute.

When I was finished making the runner I was surprised at how much I like it. Okay! Yes, you read the title correctly there is a fail coming along. 

My lovely husband spilled spaghetti sauce on the table runner day 2... Without even thinking about it I put the runner into the washer and proceeded to wash it... Big mistake. Apparently, burlap is not all the same. There is burlap that has more of a fabric texture to it. This burlap can be washed. The burlap I got not so much. When I pulled the table runner out of the washer it was a tangled mess. Completely ridiculous and wasn't savable. I do plan on purchasing some "fabric" style burlap and making another table runner. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

What a beautiful weekend...

Oh how I wish I could start my post with that! It was cold this weekend. The cold however wasn’t the bad part the bone chilling wind that was the part that kept me indoors almost all weekend. So instead of boring you with a lame story of how we played board games and hide and seek with the kids I’ll tell you about my awesome trip to Cancun Mexico. 

I know random right! After returning home from a LONG deployment my husband was in much need of a vacation. I went along more than willingly. We were lucky enough to have my older brother and his wife join us on this awesome adventure. We don’t do typical things when on vacation. We didn’t go sight seeing unless you consider Walmart in Mexico a sight. We didn’t rent a car but rode one super sketchy bus after another. We didn’t swim with any really big fish but I did release a baby sea turtle into the wild. We didn’t use sun screen my husband became a lobster and required aloe. We didn’t go to the store and load up on practical supplies like water and food when the hurricane hit we got beer and snacks and hit the beach with our lawn chairs. We were determined to have a front row seat. Thinking back on it this may not have been the best idea, but hey we survived. We did go fishing and do dome really funny things. The sun was warm and the surroundings were breath taking. 

You might be wondering why I am choosing to write about a trip that happened months ago. Well, let me tell you. Right now as I write this the heat is pumping, I am layered in cloths and my toes are freezing! I am choosing to write about Cancun because it was warm and beautiful there. And maybe just maybe I can channel some of that warmth. 

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Channeling creativity

For a long time I have been toying with the idea of getting more creative...

Along with the idea of getting more creative I was/am hoping to make some money selling my creativity. I’ve had an etsy shop for a while but never really used it. Most of my sales are either local, word of mouth, or to a baby shop. So I am now branching out there and using the resources in front of me. Tonight I decided that I am going to post my digital designs for sale! I am super excited! I hope this goes well for me. Here’s what went up today:

Interested in purchasing this or any other fabulous design please visit my etsy shop or email me @ lavoisemiller@gmail(dot)com