Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Upcycle Kids Clothing and make a Fishing Game

I made a fishing game for my daughter's Curious George birthday party. These took about 5 minutes to make per fish. Rather than run to the store to buy some fabric, I decided to re-purpose some clothes that no longer fit my kids. I cut out some fish shapes from their clothes, put the outside of the fabric facing each other. Sewed all but the tail. Turned the fish right side out, filled the fish with rice and then sewed up the tail. Then I hand sewed a washer to the mouth. It was such a fun and practically free game for the party! I put the fish on a blue pillow case so they could pretend they were fishing in water. I already had the fishing pool from a toy exchange I did last year. 

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Curious George Birthday Party!

Princess just turned two and loves Curious George! We have a lot of his books and about a month ago I started letting her watch a show occasionally while I needed to tend to her baby brother. She loves both the books and the show and was excited to have a Curious George birthday party! The party was so much fun and all of the kids had a blast!

We had her party at home and kept it on the smaller size. Being January, we wanted to keep the kids inside and due to her age, having less kids is usually better. There were eleven kids there, that included two babies. I bought her a big Curious George cake and asked my baker to use pink icing instead of red. The colors for her party were pink and yellow. I made a few balloon center pieces for the big tables and put up a few birthday decorations. I also made a few games. I made a fishing game. I made the fish out of clothes that the kids had outgrew and I hadn't donated yet. They loved seeing their old clothes re-purposed! I also made a banana bean bag toss game where I drew a big George face and cut out a mouth. Then I sewed some bananas out of soft yellow fabric that I stuffed with rice. The kids loved tossing the bananas in George's mouth. I also made a pin the tail on Hundley game. I drew a tailless Hundley and then made about a dozen tails for the kids to try and put on him. For the little kids, I just let them walk over and put the tail on him. The older kids, we blind-folded them. They loved it! The winner won a sock monkey.  

To make the party extra special we bought a few costumes to surprise the birthday girl with a few guests. My husband dressed up as the Man with the Yellow Hat. I dressed up like Professor Wiseman (from the TV show, in the books, the professor is a man). We dressed up our baby as Curious George. Princess LOVED it!! She was so surprised. My sister was reading to her when we went to get dressed. All of the kids thought it was neat. Our older son, who loves Curious George too, thought it was a great idea! We surprised him as well. My husband made a great Man with the Yellow Hat! And we now have our costumes for next Halloween. 

Here are some pictures from the party. The games were cheap and easy to make. I also bought Curious George's Birthday Surprise book and had everyone who came to the party sign it. We splurged on the cake and costumes. I served strawberries, blueberries, fruit dip, chips, guacamole, and a variety of drinks. I bought a vegetable tray but completely forgot to pull it out of the fridge until the party was over. The party favors were bubbles, a bracelet, and some balloons. We made our daughter's day and that was the most important thing. 

Cutest George cake ever!!

I love the little George train toy they added

Some fruit, fruit dip, chips, and guacamole

A few decorations

Fishing game

Princess, Man in the Yellow Hat, Curious George, and Professor Wiseman

Such a great costume!

Family picture in costume - Baby George was a little upset

Cake time! I moved our small table to the middle of the kitchen dining area

Sweet friends

We let her open her presents at the party

Her friends wanted to watch her open their gifts

Feed George Banana Toss Game

Pin the Tail on Hundley

It's hard to get a group picture but I was determined to get one.
I have missed getting group pictures at the other parties.

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Princess is 2!

Dear Princess,

It seems like yesterday you were born and now you are two years old! Time SLOW DOWN! You bring so much joy to our lives and we thank God daily for you and your brothers.

Your Favorites!

Books: Any but you especially like Curious George books,

Songs: You love to sing! Some of your favorite songs you like to sing are: "Amazing Grace," "Someday," "I want Jesus to Walk with Me," and "Jesus Loves Me." You have good rhythm and pick up songs easily.

Toys: You love your baby doll, Curious George doll, and all things related to playing with dolls. You got a kitchen set for your birthday and have enjoyed cooking in it and have made me a few things as well.

TV Show: We just started letting you watch a show on occasion about a month ago while I needed to care for Jackson. Your favorites are Curious George and Hermie and Friends. 

Foods: There are several and you are a great eater! If I ask you, you'll say "hot dogs" which you rarely get. You also like bananas, salad, watermelon, potatoes, and carrots. Your favorite cereal is Cheerios. 

Places to go: Church, you love your Bible class and love big church too! You also love going to the store with Mom and eating at Chick-fil-a. 

You love to dance and play with your brothers. You enjoy making both of them laugh. You have been speaking in complete sentences for a few months. You are very smart and pick up on things very easily. You are helpful, for example, I'll ask Blue Rock to pick up something and you'll say, "No! Me!" And proceed to go pick up what ever it was I asked him to do. 

You're the healthiest kid I've ever met! Praise God you have never had a fever or been sick. You've been exposed to a lot of things, Hand, Foot, and Mouth. You got a few spots on your bottom but that was it. 

We made it! When you were born I had hoped to nurse you until at least a year and wanted to make it to two years if you were still interested. Once I got pregnant with Blue Knight I thought I'd dry up and or you would no longer want to nurse. Well, sweet girl, you still wanted to nurse. Now that you are two, I'm starting to wean you and sooner than you'd like, Mama's milk will be replaced solely with big girl milk. I've enjoyed our journey and am so thankful that I've been able to provide you with one of the best foods on the planet. 

Your two year old check-up went great. Your doctor said you looked perfect and you are advanced in every area. Here are your stats.

Height: 26 inches (44%)
Weight: 26 lbs (42%)
Head: 47.5 cm (50%)

Your party is this coming week and I'll post more pictures then. We love you, Princess!!


On birthdays I decorate the door and hang the number of years you are!
"Look Mom, 2s!"

You thought it was neat.

You got a play kitchen as your big gift from Mom and Dad

You love it! I can see you having fun with it for several years.

We went to lunch at Chick-fil-a, your choice!
Your grandparents came too.

It's hard to hold up 2 fingers!

I had to get a few pictures with just you!

This mama loves her girl!

We had a chocolate cake after dinner

You loved your cake

Some gifts from your brothers

You got a Curious George book, a birthday George, and a dog you can walk

Walking your new pet

12 Years of Marriage!

My husband and I recently celebrated our 12th wedding anniversary. God has truly blessed me with an amazing partner in this life. We've had our share of hardships and sadness but thankfully have had more times of joy. Here are twelve tips that have helped us have a happy marriage.

12 Tips for a Successful Marriage

1. Put God first. When God is placed at the center of your relationship, you tend to look at each other differently.

2. Eat breakfast and dinner together when possible. Lunch too if you can! I'm saddened by how many families don't eat any meals together. 

3. Take time to talk, everyday! Let's be honest, sometimes we really only have about 5 minutes to talk alone. At least it's something. Why only five minutes some days? Well, we have three young children and they keep us very busy and are always around us. Sometimes when we're putting them to bed one of us will fall asleep and the other one well go to bed since we get a visitor every night. I haven't slept through the night in two years.

4. Be intimate. Once children enter the picture, true exhaustion hits like you've never seen! It's still important to take time to be together. 

5. Pray for one another. Prayer is so powerful and it's so important to pray for your spouse, daily. Find out what's on their heart and pray for them.

6. Help each other out. We all have "chores" we each typically do to run a household. Occasionally surprise your spouse and do theirs or jump in and help. I cannot tell you how often and appreciative I am of my husband helping me get caught up on folding and putting away a basket or two of towels, for example. 

7. Support each other's hobbies. Most likely you will each have a hobby that you are interested in. Allow your spouse time for their hobby. We are not able to spend tons of time with our hobbies but we get to enjoy them when we can.

8. Learn to speak their love language. Gary Chapman's book, The Five Love Languages, will give you a clue of what your spouse's love language is if you don't already know it. Once you figure it out, speak it to them!

9. Cry together. Sometimes life is just unfair! When you are married there is no reason you need to suffer alone. Go to your spouse, cry with each other. Everybody goes through tough times as well as happy times.

10. Laugh together. Hopefully you will have far more times of laughing together than crying. Tell each other jokes, remind each other of funny events you've gone through, watch a funny comedian. 

11. Cook together. There is something fun about cooking with someone. This past year we started subscribing to Blue Apron and Green Chef. We've made some wonderful meals and learned from doing this. 

12. Go on dates. Most of our dates are at home after the kids are in bed. We'll watch a movie we didn't make it to the theater to see. Eat dessert without the kids. Or just talk and catch up. Once our baby is a little older we'll go on dates away from the house again.

Marriage can be hard. But it can also be a lot of fun! May you and your spouse enjoy a lifetime together. 

Friday, January 8, 2016

Instant Pot Beef Bourguignon Recipe

Instant Pot Beef Bourguignon
I made a delicious Beef Bourguignon in my Instant Pot! It was hard to find an easy to follow recipe online. So I wanted to share how I made it in my Instant Pot. The Instant Pot is great! I highly recommend getting one. If you don't have one you can make this Beef Bourguignon in a pressure cooker on your stove.
Instant Pot Beef Bourguignon
serves 4


1 lb beef stew, organic if you can get it
1/2 pound bacon cut up in 1 inch pieces
5-6 carrots cut in large chunks
12 pearl onions
1/2 cup beef broth
1 cup red wine
2-4 red potatoes, halved or quartered depending on size
1 package of mushrooms
1 tsp pepper
1 tsp salt
1 tsp fresh or dried thyme
2 cloves of garlic minced


Saute bacon in the Instant Pot until cooked through. Remove from pan and add stew meat. Brown stew meat in the bacon grease. Add onions to the pan to brown for a few minutes. Then add everything else to the pan. Close led and cook on high pressure for 40 minutes. Do a quick release. Remove everything but the juices from the pan. Cover with foil and make a rue. Turn the pot off and then on saute. Add 1-2 Tbs of butter to the liquid. In a small bowl add about 1/4 cup of the liquid from the pan, add 1 Tbs of flour and mix well with a fork until well combined. Then add to the pan. Stir and boil until the liquid thickens. Pour rue over your dish and enjoy! If you don't have time to make a rue, it's still really good with just the pan juices on it!

Everything but the potatoes and spices
Bacon, yum! I put the whole package in to cook at once and saved some for breakfast.

Stew meat

Everything is in the pot ready to go!
All done!

Put in a dish and cover with foil while you make the rue
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...