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Monday, February 23, 2015

2 ingredient mixture to refinish wood furniture

This past weekend I was cleaning and sprucing up a dresser we bought from Craigslist for the nursery and I tried a natural "recipe" to refinish wood furniture. It made some difference on the dresser but its finish wasn't that bad to begin with. Then I decided to try it out on the buffet in our dining room and was super happy with the results! You may remember the buffet/sideboard from here that I bought at a vintage/antique place. So here is how to do this yourself.

3/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup white vinegar

Mix together and use a rag to wipe a thin layer on furniture. After about 30 minutes follow up with a dry rag/cloth. Wait a few hours before putting items back on top of your furniture.

Below you can clearly see that I have applied the mixture to the right side but not to the left side of the top. It made a huge impact on this wood furniture piece where the finish had definitely seen some wear and had lots of scratches etc. It really gave it new life!

Since a thin layer of an oil mixture is good for wood, you can repeat this every year if you want to or anytime your wood finish pieces need some sprucing up. Note: I wiped the mixture on the entire piece, not just the top. Not gonna lie, I also did this to two of our end tables in the family room (that are both old hand-me-down pieces from my parents) and made them look years and years newer! It is best at refinishing scratches that aren't too deep.

Now you can go to town refinishing all your wood furniture with 2 simple ingredients you have on hand.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Starbucks onesie

This is the perfect onesie for coffee loving parents! I made this using my Silhouette machine.

First I saved the starbucks logo and imported it into the software and used the trace function to create the cutable image. I used photoshop to make the words in two separate file (I LOVE YOU and A LATTE) but you could also use paint or word or some other application if you don't have photoshop as long as you can save the words as a jpg. Then you can import the words into the Silhouette software too, trace it and arrange it around the starbucks logo.

Then follow the Silhouette instructions for cutting your heat transfer vinyl, iron it to the onesie and it is ready to go for the parents-to-be! I gave this to Katie as part of her shower gift and cannot wait to see the baby rockin' it!

Thursday, February 19, 2015

25 Weeks

I thought I'd do another one of these updates since we reached 25 weeks earlier this week. Hard to believe we only have 15 weeks to go (if munchkin comes on his due date that is... which is something like 5% of babies haha)!

This sweater dress with its awesome v-neck/sort of cowl neck is actually the first thing I ever bought from H&M. I got it when we took a trip to NYC to visit friends in 2009 and haven't ever found anything as great there since... maybe the H&Ms in NYC are better than ones in other cities.

How far along: 25 weeks
Baby Size: a cauliflower, 13.6 inches, ~1.5 lbs
Weight gain: +11.5
Maternity clothes: Yes, my maternity jeans and work pants are very comfy although this outfit just happens to be all non-maternity. Luckily my fleece-lined leggings still fit... those have definitely been necessary with the temps in the single digits and teens.
Sleep: Pretty good, still getting up once or sometimes twice a night to pee
Movement: Yes, plenty of movement when I am sitting or lying down
Best moment this week: Vacationing with the Clemson girls and them getting to feel you kick
Looking forward to: Hopefully meeting munchkin's new boy cousin soon, these two boys are going to have all kinds of fun
Food cravings: Not exactly a craving but loving my nighttime snack of chocolate chips and peanut butter
Anything making you queasy or sick: Nope
Labor Signs: No, thank goodness... keep cooking Munchkin!
What I miss: The mai tai's the girls had at the pool this weekend did look pretty great
Symptoms: A little lingering coughing from the cold I had a couple weeks ago, nose bleeding, and occasional back pain.
Nursery: Paint samples are on the wall waiting for a decision but nothing else new.
Belly Button in or out? In
Wedding rings on or off? On
Mood: So happy to be feeling munchkin move around every day and can't believe we have 15 weeks left being pregnant

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Cute As A Button Baby Shower

Last month I hosted a baby shower for one of my best friends along with her sister in law. The Cute As A Button baby shower was fun to plan and Melissa and I really enjoyed making it a special day for Katie and baby.

First up is all the decor. I knew it would be good to do something sewing-related since Katie loves to craft and sew and when I was talking to a sweet neighbor about it she suggested the theme and even had the banner that I could borrow. The banner was already gender neutral with orange, blue/teal, lime green and brown which was perfect since the shower needed to be gender neutral. I loved the bright orange and blue/teal colors so I used those as the main colors.

I made the big buttons using paper plates from Party City - they are the smaller of the two sizes of the paper plates that come in a ton of colors. I cut out small circles and taped those to the plates to make buttons

For the table centerpiece I did a diaper bundle on top of a cake stand. It makes for a nice centerpiece without being as involved as a diaper cake. I printed out the stork from an image found online onto white cardstock and had my mom serge around flannel for a blanket. You fold the blanket so it is almost as narrow as a rolled diaper and tie it up and fill it with rolled diapers. It had about 25 diapers in it.

I also filled two vintage mason jars with assorted buttons.

For the mantle I made two onesies with my Silhouette (one with the Starbucks logo that says I love you a latte and one with their last name). I put a wipeable/washable bib in the middle that had big dots on it that sort of look like buttons. I also cut out two buttons with the Silhouette to complete the hanging string. I filled vases with assorted buttons and a square glass container with thread and propped up my pin cushion for decor.

This was the circle garland I made that I did a tutorial on here.

When guests arrived everyone chatted for a bit and had food and drinks. Now for the menu.. we did an afternoon shower so a full meal wasn't necessary and we did lots of different snacks/appetizers and desserts. Melissa made most of the food and it was delicious!

Cheese, meats and crackers
Pizza roll bites
Spinach artichoke dip and pita chips
Spicy ranch type dip and chips 
Icing filled thumbprint cookies

Wassail - apple cider-like drink that my mom makes

And I used some fun striped orange straws and mason jars for those having lemonade or water and then use coffee cups for the wassail.

Once everyone was done eating we had games and activities. We played Baby Price is Right, Make a diaper out of toilet paper on a stuffed animal, and Baby Scategories. 

We also had people leave advice or wishes for the mom to be. I made the cards in Photoshop to go with the shower invite I made.

These were the invites. I looked up various ideas and designed them myself in Photoshop and then had them printed on cardstock at staples.

Then it was time for opening the gifts! Katie got a lot of really wonderful gifts from her registry and some handmade gifts too. And the Mathes family got her the crib and mattress... two very essential items!

Katie is a Detroit Tigers fan and her husband is a St. Louis Cardinals fan so I made a parents divided onesie using my Silhouette. Can't wait to see the baby in this during baseball season.

Melissa made these adorable button cookies as a party favor for the guests wrapped up with a note that says Thank you "sew" much for coming!

All the sweet Mathes ladies... Katie's mother in law and sister in laws.

Katie and I showing off our bumps. We are 10 weeks apart and I cannot wait for our babies to hang out and I know they will be great friends! I'm even more excited to find out if baby Mathes is a boy or a girl!

Hope this helps anyone out who is planning a cute as a button baby shower. A huge thanks to co-host, Melissa... I would plan another shower with you anytime!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Super Easy Garland

This is literally the easiest garland you will ever make. I first made this a few years ago for a baby shower and have since learned an even easier way for subsequent showers which I'll show you below.


- cardstock
- circle punch or craft cutting machine (I used my Silhouette but a punch would be just as easy)
- sewing machine and thread

First cut out/punch out however many circles or whatever shape you want for your garland. My circles were 1 1/2 inches. I forgot to take a photo of the giant pile of circles but you can sort of see a few of them in this photo where I made some button cupcake toppers using the same circles (more on the baby shower these are from soon!).

Pull some excess thread through your sewing machine so you have a long string at the beginning end. Start to feed the circles through your sewing machine sewing through the middle of them. I like to space them out just a little so I started to feed in a new circle as soon as the previous circle was fully sew through but you could space them closer or further apart.

The sewing machine is what makes this garland so easy. My machine had absolutely no problem sewing through the cardstock. I'm sure if you made whole bunch of these it might dull your needle some but in that case you can just change out your needle but I've made several and my needle is still fine.

Then just hang your garland! I use scotch tape to hang mine and it works fine and didn't pull off any paint.

Not gonna lie I tried really hard to convince Eric to leave this garland up for awhile in our family room because I really liked it (plus the colors went with the room). He didn't go for it.

If you want to save your garland, take it down slowly wrapping it around a piece of cardboard to keep it untangled. Word to the wise - don't let your husband take down the garland or you may end up with a big tangled mess :)

Note: I used to make the garland by gluing circles to twine which does take a lot longer than sewing but is an option for someone without access to a sewing machine.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Skinny Chicken Broccoli Mushroom Casserole

Sorry I have been MIA lately. Our house was plagued with an awful cold and fever last week and I'm just now starting to feel like a normal human being again. Thank goodness for my parents bringing over some food because we hardly left the house.

This is a recipe I made a few weeks ago for a friend and neighbor that recently welcomed a little baby boy. I missed out on bringing them a meal soon after the birth due to the holidays so instead I coordinated it with her first week back at work. It's healthy but also comfort food so would be great during these cold winter months and would be a great meal to take to a new mom or someone who is sick. I paired it with some fresh bread from the bakery when I dropped it off.

Skinny Chicken Broccoli Mushroom Casserole 
from YummyHealthyEasy, serves 6


- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 16 oz pkg of sliced mushrooms (if you don't want this many or any mushrooms I think you could sub some peas or red bell peppers in and it would be delicious)
- 2 cups chicken breasts cut into cubes
- 3 Tbsp flour
- 1 1/2 cups fat free milk
- 16 oz steam-in-bag broccoli florets
- 1/4 cup light mayo
- 2/3 cup fat free plain greek yogurt
- salt and pepper to taste
- 3/4 cup mexican style grated cheese

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray 2-qt casserole dish with cooking spray. Cook broccoli in microwave according to directions and set aside. Heat olive oil over medium high heat. Add onion and mushrooms and cook until tender. Add chicken and cook until cooked through.

Sprinkle in flour and stir constantly for 1 minute. Stir in milk, bring to boil and cook for 3 minutes. Stir in cooked broccoli and heat through about 1 minute. Add mayo, yogurt, salt and pepper and stir until combined. Pour into casserole dish and top with cheese. Bake for 20 minutes.

Before cheese

After cheese

After baking

Hope you enjoy!

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