by Jamie Hinckley on Mar 22, 2014
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!
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.
by Jamie Hinckley on Mar 18, 2014
I already took off the handles of the top drawer before remembering to take a picture.
This was a really fun project! It was one of my first pieces to refinish when we moved to Florida. I recommend starting with something small to work on for your first project.
This is my Mother-In-Laws 30plus year old night stand. They gave it to us several years ago with a matching armoire. It might look outdated, but it is very good quality and still in great conditions. I love how it turned out!
1. First I sanded the top of the night stand to remove all the finish. I also sanded down the tops of the drawers and took off their handles. I painted the bottom white and technically didn’t need to sand the drawer tops as much as I did, but I wanted it to be nice and smooth. You really only need to sand places that have scratches or places that you are going to use a wood stain on. I also spray painted the handles with a silver metallic spray paint.
2. After this, I cleaned off all the dust and put on two coats of primer (I recommend Zinsser oil based primer) to the bottom and started my first coat of stain on the top. Make sure you wait until everything is completely dry before giving 2nd coats. I actually did 3 coats of wood stain on the top to get it as dark as I wanted it to be. I used the stain color called Kona.
3. Next, I put two coats of regular white latex paint. I also mixed my paint with a little floetrol. This helps slow down the drying process to decrease the visibility of brush strokes.
4. Next was the fun part! I used Valspar pre mixed antiquing glaze from Lowes. It is very easy to use. Paint it on with a foam brush, then use a lint free rag to wipe it off. I actually used the antiquating glaze on the handles as well. You can put on as much or as little as you want to get the desired effect you are going for.
5. Finally, I did three coats of a water based poly (I recommend Minwax polycrylic). I also waited a good 24hrs before doing the first poly coat. It is not recommend to to do more than 2 coats of poly in a 24hr period.
I also waited 48hrs before putting my nightstand to normal use.
by Dana Patterson on Feb 19, 2014
We are still in the process up updating our home. As mentioned before, it was a short sale that needed TONS of “help”. It was at the top of our budget, so we slowly have to update. This project only cost $43 and so many people have commented on how great it looks. I got the idea here from my favorite home blog, The Yellow Cape Cod.
Here’s the fireplace before:
I hated the black brick showing with the 80’s red.
Here’s the process:
Step by step process:
1. Go to Sherwin Williams and get a gallon of white Cashmere paint. You can only get it in a gallon, that’s the only way they sell it. You will also need a paintbrush if you don’t have one. Make sure you check online for a coupon, I found a 30% off paint one!
2. Remove mantle and clean your fireplace out.
3. Clean off your fireplace by vacuuming it well.
3. Mix half paint and half water. You really only need like a pint so your container doesn’t need to be that big.
4. Start Painting. One person brushes and another comes behind with an old rag (we used one of my husband’s old white t-shirts) to smooth things over.
You can tell we had a lot going on at once.
It was that easy! I wanted it white washed so you could still see the brick through it. You can always add less water or do an extra coat. I’m SO happy with it. I would love a new mantle, but that isn’t quite in the budget just yet.
Looks completely different!
The whole project took less than three hours. WHY DIDN’T I DO THIS SOONER?!?! I love it and I love it even more because we did it ourselves! Thank you Yellow Cape Cod!
by Dana Patterson on Feb 11, 2014
Since we’ve had so much snow and below freezing weather, we’ve been
going nuts stir crazy and gotten ourselves into a lot of crafts. I’ve always loved Valentine’s Day. So, my 4 year old loves crafts and my 2 year old loves animals so I decided to do a mix of the two. I found lots of heart crafts that are animals. I don’t really think I need to do any tutorials because they are all pretty self explanatory.
We’ve also done a few other crafts:
We made frames for each of the grandmas! $1 frames plus heart stickers from Target. They each painted one!
They had fun using stickers to write “love” stuff on them!
Rice krispie treats with red food coloring and used a heart cookie cutter! Sticks, bags and ribbon were purchased at A.C. Moore.
These were wooden hearts for $.39 at A.C. Moore and we just painted them and used red sharpie!
Lastly, I put this on Facebook yesterday. It seemed to be a big hit!
Use a toilet paper roll to make a heart!
Happy Happy Valentine’s Day!
by Dana Patterson on Feb 07, 2014
My 4 year old is in the Gummy Bear class. We went with the “beary special” theme. She has worked long and hard to make enough for her class. I think they turned out pretty cute!
I got the clear wrappers from a craft store in the cake section (they are really for cake pops).
Check out some other great ideas here!
by Dana Patterson on Jan 30, 2014
What is Stitch Fix?
Basically, it is an online clothing design service. You fill out answers to several questions about your clothing styles. They picture some outfits and you rate them (this gives them an idea of your style). You pay at $20 design fee that can be put towards your clothing/accessory purchase. They send you five items and if you keep all five, then you get a 25% discount on the whole order. From what I’ve read, the clothing is average price and you can even fill out the price range you like/usually spend.
So, I did it. I caved and signed up for Stitch Fix. Here’s why:
- I’m a mom of three kids four and under.
- My kids go nuts in malls so I can’t try anything on.
- I love getting fun packages in the mail.
- I stay at home and my sweatpants need to be put on the shelf when I leave the house.
- I’m over 30. Eek.
- I’ve read great things about Stitch Fix and one of my friends constantly rants and raves.
- I have zero style.
- I have zero style.
- and…. I have zero style.
I’m.so.excited. I will definitely post pics of my first delivery on February 22nd.
Check it out!
by Jamie Hinckley on Jan 30, 2014
I recently made this monkey cake for a special 2 year old in my life. She loves monkey’s and is constantly singing “No More Monkey’s Jumping On the Bed.” It was pretty time consuming making all the stars for the fur, but it turned out awesome!
I researched lots of different monkey cakes, but in the end I used this one from My Daily SAHM Life as my model. I know I could have just ordered the monkey cake pan, but who wants to pay for a pan you will probably never use again???
I used 2 cake mix boxes and made 4 round cakes. I used Wilton’s buttercream icing and Wilton’s food colorings to get the desired colors.
1. Make 4 rounds cakes. Take them out of their cake pans, wrap them in nonstick tinfoil or parchment paper and stick them in the freezer.
2. Using construction paper, cut out your pattern. I numbered each piece so I knew which cake I would cut it from to make sure all the pieces fit.
3. Once your cake is good and frozen, use your paper pattern to cut the cakes into their shapes. Freeze the parts until you are ready to start frosting.
4. Do a thin crumb coat frist. Once the crumb coat is dry you can start frosting! I used a basic star tip.
5. The tail is made from Tootsie Rolls. Just heat them in the microwave for a few seconds then mold them how you want.
by admin on Jan 27, 2014
I’m a huge fan of helping out those in need. One of the organizations that does an excellent job of this is Habitat for Humanity. They bring communities together to help create homes and environments that families in need can use as a starting point to rebuild their lives. I’m always impressed with their efforts and the work that they do.
I was glad to see that this type of effort is also receiving corporate support. A recent press release highlighted that Columbia Utilities, a New York energy company, was partnering with Habitat for Humanity to help make a difference.
Columbia Utilities role in this effort is to donate funds to 12 months of electricity and natural gas to two homes being build by Habitat for Humanity in Brooklyn and Queens. This donation to the families can help them get back on their feet and started in the right direction. We all know how expensive energy and heating can be and it can really make a difference to a family getting their lives back together.
Columbia Utilities – Helping Families
The article highlighted how Columbia Utilities is a family owned organization since 1938. I’m glad that they’re still thinking about families and providing opportunities to help others in need. Imagine the benefits and strength that would come if more organizations donated their resources to families in need.
Helping the Community
There are so many organizations out there that help the community. I’m happy to donate my time and money to any of them that are trying to make a difference in individuals lives. I’m hopeful that I can instruct my family to continue to provide this level of generosity and care to others when they’re in need, and if it ever happens, that we’ll receive help from others should we need it.
Thanks Habitat for Humanity and Columbia Utilities for making a difference in people’s lives. We need more organizations that are willing to do so.
by Dana Patterson on Jan 21, 2014
This is such a fun way to get your kids to eat! My husband got these face plates for my older two girls for Christmas because they are picky, very picky! He thought they might be open to eating more of a variety of foods with this. Here are just a few cute things we’ve done with them since Christmas. They really do love them! They are about $12 on amazon. The possibilities are endless!
by Jamie Hinckley on Jan 12, 2014
We have a really nice Good Will thrift store near us. I can usually stop by and find some treasures for really good prices! I recently found a sturdy desk for $5 and a queen size head board for $5 also.Nice and sturdy desk, but needs a little work!
Nice sturdy desk great for a kids room! Just needs a little touch up work!
Here is the $5 head board I found! Can’t beat that price!
The desk is very sturdy, but was a little beat up on the outside. I used some Elmer’s wood filler to fill some of the scratches and holes. Then I used two coats of primer and two coats of paint. I recommend Zinsser primer.
For the head board I had to use a spray paint primer and paint in order to get all the lattice work parts evenly. Then I used regular latex paint for the smooth parts of the head board.
After the spray paint primer coat.
I used paint and primer I already had so all in all these two projects cost $10 total! Not bad!
Looks great in my 8yr old’s skate board bedroom!
Here is how the head board looks all set up!