Enchanted Mommy

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween (a day late)!  I love going with themes for my kids for Halloween.  Last year, it wasn’t happening with my two year old.  I was ecstatic when they all agreed to be a blind mouse.  Here they are!

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I just love Halloween!

In case you’re wondering where I got their costumes, their leotards are from leotard boutique dot come, sunglasses are from Children’s Place, I bought rods at A.C. Moore and spray painted them gray, mouse ears, tail and tights are from Target.

Ice Cream Cone Cupcake Cake

I always try making my kids some kind of cake. I usually google some things and they pick it out.  Sometimes I steer them into “something that looks cooler and maybe a lot easier” type cake.  My daughter picked this out and surprisingly it was SOOOOOOO easy and so adorable!

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I found the image through Pinterest, but it wasn’t linked to anything, therefore I am not able to give credit for this cute cake idea.

What ya need is:
Cake box of your choice and ingredients listed.
Muffin pans.
Cupcake liners.
30ish jelly bellys.
One container chocolate icing.
One container pink icing (or white icing dyed pink)
Stem (green candy)
Tiny bit of icing dyed red

Here are my step by steps:

1. Bake your cupcakes according to package and arrange 20 of them like this:

ellacake

2. I started icing with just regular old chocolate icing.  I did use a circular tip just because I wanted the outside of the cupcake to be even with icing.  Some people may be good enough to do it with a knife.  Then, I just used a butter knife to smooth it out.

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3.  Using the same circular tip, do the lines on the bottom of the cone!

4.  Then you icing the pink the same way and put some jelly belly’s on it!

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5.  Lastly, you do the top (the cherry) red.  And bam, you’re done.

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I think this cake cost about $6 to make!  I think it is so adorable!

Oh yeah, the ice cream theme is awesome too.  Amazon has two cute things that you can use as favors!  They have ice cream dishes and the fun cone popper thingy!  Happy Party Planning!

How to Paint and Antique your Kitchen Cabinets

My parents had an accidental house fire recently sparked from their fire place that spread through their living room last fall.  Although the fire damage was minimal, the smoke damage was terrible.  They had to get their entire house scrubbed from top to bottom and repainted.

During this cleaning process their kitchen cabinets were damaged.  The wood finish was stripped in several places.

I decided to be brave and offer to repaint them… I couldn’t make them any worse after all! Ha.  After a lot of research I finally got around to the task a few weeks ago.  They turned out GREAT!  They look brand new and way better than they looked even before the fire.

I regret that I forgot to take a picture before the cabinet doors were removed, but here is the before pic with the doors already off.

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And now for a few of the After pics….

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Awesome right!  It changes the entire look of the kitchen!  Did I mention that the entire project cost less than $300.  That included all the paint/primer, glaze, supplies, and hardware.

So here are the basics of what I did:

1.  Remove all the cabinet doors and hardware.  I numbered all the doors using post it notes first.  I put one post it note on the back of the cabinet and one with a matching number where the cabinet door was removed.  This saved me from having to puzzle through figuring out where each door went when I was finished.

2.  The hardware was spray painted with a metallic spray paint after we soaked them in vinegar and water to clean them.   It took three coats of spray paint.

3.  I sanded down any visible blemishes and wiped everything clean.  Part of the island and even some of the long sides of the cabinets is not real wood and more like thin particle board.  I sanded this down as well as possible to really get it scuffed up a bit so that the primer would stick better (actually, I delegated this part to my Dad since I hate sanding!).

4.  Priming time!  I started with priming the inside of the cabinet doors so that I would be doing the outside part that everyone will see last.  I figured that I would rather have the back scraped from being turned over than the front.  I didn’t work on the front of the cabinets until 24hrs after the back was completely done (primed and painted).  I only did one coat of primer.  I recommend Zinsser Oil based primer with stain blocker.  Just a warning… it is strong smelling!

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One coat of primer applied

One coat of primer applied

5.  I then did two coats of paint.  I used an off white color and got the Benjamin Moore Active paint in the satin finish.  Satin so it is easy to clean food and spills and the the Benjamin Moore Active brand because my research showed me that this paint hold ups really well on cabinets and has a really nice finish to it making a poly coat unnecessary.  I was wary of doing a poly coat on white cabinets as it often yellows over time.  After waiting 24hrs from the last paint coat on the back of the cabinet doors I turned them over primed and then painted two coats.  Oh, I almost forgot… I added Floetrol to my paint each time I put pain in the roller pan.  This slows down your drying time which will decrease any brush or roller marks on your cabinets.

6.  After waiting another 24hrs, I used Valsar antiquing glaze to antique the drawers, cabinet doors, and trim.  I use the Valspar gel because it is already mixed and ready; no need to add a thing to it.  This is really the fun part.  Use a foam brush and paint a thin coat over the desired area (I really only focused on the crevices as I wanted it to be a very light antique look), then using a lint free rag, wipe it all off.  Some of the glaze will remain giving it an antique look.  You really can’t screw this one up since you just keep wiping it off if you want less and repeat it if you want it more heavy.  I keep a wet rag nearby also so that I can wipe parts even cleaner if they look smudged.

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7.  I waited another 24hrs before putting the cabinet doors back on and installing the knobs and handles.  The easiest way to install the knobs and handles is to make a template of the corner of the cabinet door and of the shape of your drawers.  Then measure exactly where you want your knobs to go on the template and mark them.  Use this template on each drawer and door so that the knobs and handles are all in the same spot.  I know they sell these templates at home depot, but it was simple enough to make my own out of construction paper.  You will need a power drill and an electric screw driver for this step.

The island without handles/knobs

The island without handles/knobs

 

The island with handles and knobs

The island with handles and knobs

All done!  This was a very tedious task and cannot be rushed.  If you decide to do this, make sure that you have enough time to give to the task.  I recommend at least a full week.  The more you have to rush each step, the sloppier your work will be.

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The Best Spaghetti Squash Ever!!!

Summer time means eating lots of different fruits and vegetables.  I LOVE eating spaghetti squash and have been trying all the different ways to eat it.

This is my all time favorite way to eat spaghetti squash!  Sooooooo  yummy!  Everything tastes better with bacon! Ha!

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INGREDIENTS:
Large spaghetti squash
Bacon (cooked and crumbled)
Fresh basil
Tomatoes (diced)
2 TB butter
Salt and Pepper

To cook the spaghetti squash, cut it in half and scrape all the seeds out.  Then put the two halves face up on a cookie sheet.  Add a TB of butter to each half and give it a little salt and pepper.  Bake at 375 degrees for 40 -45 min.  Let it cook for minute or two and shred with fork.

Top with crumbled bacon, diced tomatoes, and fresh basil.

DIY: Easiest Way to Paint Stripes!

I had been wanting to do a striped room for a while, but was too intimated.  My sister-in-law did her nursery in stripes and it finally motivated me enough to give it a try.  It was surprisingly easier than I thought it would be.

Looks great right!

All done and looks great!  I get so many compliments on it!

All done and looks great! I get so many compliments on it!

Supplies Needed:
Latex paint
Roller/paint brush
Painter’s tape
Chalk line tool
Ruler or measuring tape

I did 12 inch stripes just to make the measuring simple.  The most obnoxious part is the taping.

First I used a 12 inch ruler and marked every 12 inches on both sides of each wall. Then I used a chalk line tool to mark the stripes.

Basically, you put this dry chalk in the tool and shake it up.  Then you use a thumb tac to tac the end of the chalk line to your first 12 inch mark on one side of the wall.  Pull the chalk string out until it is the length of the wall and hold the other end tight at the other 12 inch mark you made on the other side of the wall.  Make sure the chalk line is wound tight.  Then just use your free hand and snap the line up.  It will snap back down and leave an easy to see line across your wall.  Repeat this for all your lines.

Here is one wall after making chalk lines.

Here is one wall after making chalk lines.

This is what the chalk line tool looks like.  It is sold with the chalk and costs around $10.

This is what the chalk line tool looks like. It is sold with the chalk and costs around $10.

Once I had my chalk lines I put painters tape along the lines, making sure that the stripes I would be painting had the painters tape on the outside of the lines and not the inside.  I also put x marks with painters tape on the stripes that I would not be painting just to make it easier not to make any mistakes.

All taped up and ready to paint!

All taped up and ready to paint!

Painting time!  I was very careful to make sure I used the roller very lightly near the tape so that paint wouldn’t seep under the tape.  You can also push a credit card end along the painters tape to seal it to the wall better before you start painting.  Make sure you peel your painters tape off the wall before your paint is dry.   If you wait until it is too dry be very carefully peeling it off as it can start to tear the dried paint off with it.

All done and looks great!  I get so many compliments on it!

All done and looks great! I get so many compliments on it!

 

Here is the other side of the room... I know bad lighting. Sorry.

Here is the other side of the room… I know bad lighting in this pic. Sorry.

 

 

Pinkalicious 1st Birthday

I cannot believe it, my youngest princess turned the big 1.  We decided to do a Pinkalicious family party.  Here she is!

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I always take 1st birthday pictures of my kids.  I quickly did this one two days before her birthday so I could display it at her party.  In case you’re wondering, I got the romper and headband here.  It fit her perfect and ran true to size (she’s 17 lbs and I ordered 6-12 months).

I’m so mad at myself for not taking pictures of the food, but it included:
– chicken salad  and egg salad croissants
– butterfly pb & j sandwiches for the kids
– lumpia
spinach dip
-
 buffalo cheese ball
– veggie tray
– fruit salad
sausage cheese dip

I also took pictures of the drinks kind of late so they didn’t look the prettiest at this point:

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The best was the pink punch!  I thought it tasted so delicious!  I scooped the sherbet into the punch with an ice cream scoop.  The pink chevron straws are from Target.

My favorite was her “1” cake because it looked so cute, but was SOOOOOOO easy to make!

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I used a strawberry cake mix and funfetti icing.  I dyed the icing pink with icing dye.  It was so easy!  I did have to put the icing in the fridge for like 30 minutes after I mixed it because it was a little too loose.  I used a wilton 1M tip and started in the center and worked my way around.    I filled in the holes with the same tip in between the cupcakes.  It took me probably 10 minutes to ice!  I also put these edible pearls on there for a little extra touch.

Her smash cake looked very similar!

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This probably took me 5 minutes to ice.  I used this cupcake cake mold.  First, I put icing in between the two layers of cake and then did a very thin layer of icing on the top with a butter knife so the roses would stick well.  I used the same icing tip as above and just did little roses all over and added the pearls.  Remember, the rose starts in the center!  I bought the ribbon at A.C. Moore.

I also made chocolate covered pretzels and sugar cookies.  My mother in-law also made a delicious cheesecake.

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I used my cookie cutters from my kit that I wrote about before.  I actually just bought pillsbury cold dough.  The letters looked rough until I iced them!  I thought they turned out pretty cute!

Here is the display of her “pink sweets” table.

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I’d say she enjoyed her cake!  I love how her handprint is on her face.

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Okay, so one more…..

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I also made cute pom poms for above her!

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I used 8 pieces of tissue paper for the center one, 7 for the dark pink ones and 6 for the small ones!

I’d say she had a pretty good 1st birthday!

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Be still my heart!

I hope you have as much fun planning your little ones’ birthdays as I do!

Butternut Squash Brisket Chili

I have this favorite brisket recipe I love making.  The problem is, it always leaves us with a ton of left overs!  I often like to make it when I am cooking dinner for a new neighbor or a friend who just had a baby.  It easily feeds two families.

This time I tried something different.  I made chili out of it!  I was inspired by this recipe from epicurious.com, but ended doing my own things since I didn’t have all of the other items needed for their recipe.  Plus, it just doesn’t feel like chili to me without some beans in it!

I feel like the butternut squash really made the chili!  It was delicious! I will be making this again probably every time we have left over brisket!

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Butternut Squash Brisket Chili
 
Author:
Recipe type: Crockpot
Ingredients
  • Beef Brisket (cooked cut into small chunks)
  • 1 can black beans (rinsed and drained)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can tomato sauce
  • 1 large onion (diced)
  • 1 butternut squash (peeled, seeded, and cut into cubes)
  • 2 tb chili powder
  • 1 tb cumin
  • 1 tb minced garlic
Instructions
  1. Throw all of the above ingredients into the crockpot and stir it a bit. Cook on low for 4- 6 hours. Yummy!

 

Review: Alba Botanica Body Wash

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Husband and I went on our honeymoon to Hawaii.  It was pure bliss.  Three kids and almost eight years later, I feel like I can only dream about going back to the Grand Wailea in Maui.  Well, let’s just say this body wash takes me back every single day because it smells just like the shampoo, conditioner, and body wash that I used there.  It smells so good, unbelievably good.

I buy this Alba Botanica Honey Mango shower gel on Amazon.  It is a little pricey, but it is the perfect Mother’s Day gift or the special “I deserve a treat for myself”.  Try it, you won’t be disappointed.

Sorry for the lack of posts lately, three kids under five make me feel like I’m playing catch up like all the time.

Bumbo Chair Recall Updates

A recent stop at my local thrift store scored me a brand new looking baby bumbo seat for $3.  I am stoked!

The bumbo seat retails for $40 to $45 and $50 if you buy one with the attachable tray.  Clearly the Salvation Army had no idea what this bumbo chair was or they would have priced it higher.  In the check out line the cashier actually asked, “What in the world is this???”

Bumbo Play Tray - Ivory _ Target

Anyway, this bumbo did not come with the new saftey belt bumbo added (along with the safety warning sticker) from the 2012 recall.

Just in case you have a bumbo that was bought between 2003 and 2012, you should know you can go to this link and fill out a form to have them ship the safety belt to you.  It was super easy to do and my belt came in 2 weeks.  It is very easy to install and takes only a couple minutes.

Here is my kit!  It arrived in less than two weeks!

Here is my kit! It arrived in less than two weeks!

My new seat belt!

My new safety belt!

My kit came with this warning sticker for the back as well.

My kit came with this warning sticker for the back as well.

 

This belt works great!  Snug as a bug!

This belt works great! Snug as a bug!

Easter Basket Cake!

I saw this cake Allrecipes magazine.  Its pretty cute and easy to make.  I had some out of town company come for a few days so I made this for dessert for everyone.  The kids loved the M&M’s on it.

Sorry about the cell phone shot.  My camera battery wasn't charged and the kids couldn't wait any longer to eat the cake!

Sorry about the cell phone shot. My camera battery wasn’t charged and the kids couldn’t wait any longer to eat the cake!

I used M&M’s on the sides (took 1.5 bags), marshmallow easter candy on the top, and coconut flakes mixed with a little water and green food coloring to look like Easter grass.  I also cut a small round piece out of the top to fill with the “easter grass.”

The handle is just rolled up tinfoil wrapped with some ribbon.

Happy Easter!