Friday, April 30, 2010

Weighty matters!

I need some help! I am really wanting to purchase a good kitchen scale, because, let's face it, I'm a perfectionist. I like to be VERY accurate when it comes to following a recipe, especially when making my cookies! So...I'm indecisive and, as stated before, I need some help! It's between two scales right now so I will post the pros and cons of each and I want you to help me decide. The top scale:

Escali Primo Digital Scale

*5 year warranty
*many different colors
*very inexpensive
*weighs in decimals
*very accurate
*very good reviews

*only reads in decimals and not fractions
*cannot remove plate to clean
*has a hard time weighing in 1 gram increments

Number two:

Oxo Good Grip Food Scale

*highest reviews
*removable tray for cleaning
*pull out display for easier reading
*weighs in fractions
*stainless steel
*very accurate

*only weighs in fractions, no decimals
*more expensive

It would be obvious for me to purchase the Oxo, but I really, really want decimals. I also, really, really want fractions. Why, oh why, can they not put both on the Oxo? Does anybody have any solutions?!!

Thursday, April 29, 2010


Lynsee designed our header! Isn't she talented? The Pretty Poppy is so lucky to benefit from her expertise.

The banner is actually real and not computer generated. Lynsee made it to hang on our table at the expo we are attending this Saturday. If you are local and are interested in coming, we will have a booth at the Vistancia Small Business Expo. The hours of the expo are from 10:00-12:30pm. It will be held in the gymnasium. There will be about 30 businesses represented, as well as door prizes (we are sponsoring one!), and a bouncy house for the kids. It's going to be a fun day!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Friendship Bracelets

My sons are celebrating their birthdays early this week in preschool. I was racking my brain trying to figure out some sort of little treat or present for them to hand out to their class mates. Even spending just $1 per child would easily add up to a total of over $30 for both their classes. Call me cheap, but I HATE spending money on junk that just gets thrown out. I was about to bite the bullet and buy everyone a bubble wand when the idea came to me...friendship bracelets. Last year for Valentines Day, Design Mom had her kids make cute little friendship bracelets for their classmates. I think it's such a cute little idea, and have always wanted to do it. What better time than now!

I started out by purchasing craft thread (it's colorful twine and there is TONS of it near the embroidery floss) for $3.99 (!!) Score! I grabbed me a clip board and set to work. Then, I discovered that making the bracelets could quite possibly take the rest of my life at the rate I was going. In desperation I texted my genius friend and blog partner for help. She had used the idea in February and had made almost 30 in a night, so I knew there must be an easier way. Sure enough, she saved the day and taught me how to make one bracelet in about 5-10 minutes (WAY better than the 30-40 I was spending initially.) I wanted to share this fun idea (and super cinchy method) in case you ever get the itch to make some yourselves!

Start with 4 pieces of string (I used an arms length and it seemed to work well), two of each color. You can do three of each color (even faster!), or more colors (slows it down), but I liked the thinness of the four strand as it seemed easier to tie on the wrist.

Tie a knot in the top and hold it down with either a clip board or tape. Separate the colors.

Tie two double knots with your first color (you can do more or less knots depending on how thick you want each block of color. I liked the way two knots looked.)

Alternate colors, tying two knots with each. Soon you will have something that looks like this:

Keep going for 5 or so minutes (add 45 minutes if you have a toddler cruising around.)

HOORAY! You made a friendship bracelet! Tie it on the wrist of your best pal (tell them to wear it till it falls off!)

Pardon our dust

We're in the process of updating our blog look. You'll probably notice a few changes over the next few days. We hope you'll love the final product!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Tis the season!

Alrighty, it is here, in Arizona at least. What am I referring to? The dreaded swimming suit season. For this reason, and this reason alone, I am on a very restrictive diet. So, this is how I'm spending my time, instead of eating, I'm looking up bathing suits hoping it will inspire me to eat better and ignore the stirring in my stomach for a snickers bar. Oh, that does sound good!
While searching, I happened upon this beauty here. I love the polka dots and the fact that you can either wear it as a strapless or tie the halter for a little bit more support. Genius! I really do love bathing suits so what sweet suits have you come upon?

I am also in LOVE with this suit from Ouma. I love the detail she puts into her work...the bow is my fav! Check her out!

Doesn't she have an amazing photographer? PHOTOGRAPHY by GALAXIE ANDREWS check out her amazing work here:

Monday, April 26, 2010

Beach Cruiser

Oh be still my heart. I love this pretty little bike. A simple little beach cruiser for me to leisurely ride around the neighborhood with my family. (And to dream about riding along the pier in New England where I am totally going to live one day!) It's totally not hard core, but then again, I am not hard core. Except when we are dealing with chocolate, then I totally am.

They have some similar options at Costco. This one is the color I like, but not exactly a beach cruiser. All those gears...that's getting more technical than I want. You see, I am all for leisure; there will be no intense hill climbing with this bike.This one is more my style, but I don't totally love the color.Hmmm. What do you think?

Love, Heidi

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cookie Sheet Chocolate Cake

OK, this is an extremely hard thing to be posting about right now due to the fact that I am on a VERY restrictive diet. I am sacrificing for you, so here it is. This is one of my very, favorite chocolate sheet cakes. I received this recipe from my mother and I'm not sure who gave her this delicious masterpiece, but whoever it was, thank you! I love this recipe so much based on the fact that it has just a touch of cinnamon. If you know me and my baking, you know that I love to slip in that little ingredient in almost anything. I once rolled my chocolate chip cookie dough into cinnamon before baking and, let me say, it was an amazing explosion of flavor in my mouth. Sean thought it a bit much, but I beg to differ! My father also made a chili that had a pinch of cinnamon and it was the first thing I tasted. Beautiful. Anyways, I am now salivating and really wishing I could bite into almost anything right now!

Chocolate Cookie Sheet Cake:

2 Cups sugar
2 Cups flour
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 sticks butter
1/4 Cup cocoa
1 Cup water
2 eggs
1/2 Cup buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking soda

Sift together dry ingredients (top 4 ingredients). Set aside. In saucepan, bring butter, cocoa and water to a boil. Remove from heat and add to dry ingredients. Beat well. Add eggs, buttermilk and baking soda to mixture. Mix well. Spray cookie sheet or jellyroll pan with Pam. Pour batter into pan. Bake 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Five minutes before cake is done, bring to a boil:

1 stick butter
1/4 Cup cocoa
6 Tablespoons milk

Once mixture has come to a boil add 3-4 cups of powdered sugar and 1 teaspoon vanilla. You may also add 1/2 cup chopped nuts. Mix and pour over cake that has just come out of the oven. Oh, and let me say, it is heaven!

Friday, April 23, 2010


I love The Old Spaghetti Factory. Can we just talk about this for a second? We recently went there for Andy's birthday, and I was pleasantly reminded about all the reasons for my obsession. First of all, it's so inexpensive! Where else can you get bread, a salad, a main course, a drink and ice cream for ten bucks? Second, mizithra cheese. Need more explanation? Third, the fun decor and layout of the restaurant. There are all sorts of old chairs and couches used as seating, and though there are tables out in the open, many are tucked away in little "rooms" and corners. Maybe it's because we have lots of little kids, but we are always seated in one of these rooms and it's fantastic! The kids can get up and down and be loud without bothering anyone. Fourth, to piggyback off the last reason, this place is so kid friendly. You get a coloring book, crayons, a bib and crackers for the kids upon seating. They serve the food on kid plates, and the drink cups are plastic, with lids, and free to take home. We have a huge collection of kid cups from here. They have no problem splitting a meal between kids and have often times given us extra cups of applesauce and drinks. Fifth, the Italian cream sodas. I love them. So delicious. PLUS, they come in a souvenir glass. I probably have about ten in my cupboard. Since most of our wedding glasses have broken, we now use these as our everyday drink ware. Sixth, eating at the Spaghetti Factory usually means we are having lunch with dad, which we love doing.

Do any of you love the Spag Fac? Or do you have little restaurants that you just adore? Have I convinced you to go eat there right now? Call me, I'll go with you!

♥ Heidi

Thursday, April 22, 2010

If I could, I would

If I could do my wedding day all over again, it's no secret...I would! First things first, my dress. It wasn't bad, but it was a spur of the moment decision that should have been pondered over. I had searched and dreamed for months about my wedding day. Details, details! BUT, when he popped the question, none of those details seemed to matter anymore. I was such a laid back bride that it didn't even phase me when my photographer didn't show up. Crazy, I know! In hindsight, maybe my not caring was a blessing in disguise.

So, the first thing I would do if I were planning my wedding is copy, copy, copy! And who would I copy...Marth, Martha, Martha! Let's face it. The lady's a genius! Here are a few things I found while daydreaming about my never-going-to-happen wedding! I cannot bear to think about the dress, so instead I dream about my flowers. And cake, but come on, who isn't dreaming about cake? The first big future hubby would have been wearing a suit, not a tux. Nothing against a tux, I just LOVE suits! For Him...These beautiful boutonnieres. For those non-existent bridesmaids of mine: something like this. I don't necessarily love the flower, but I do love the idea.

And for me: this gorgeous bouquet. If I would have done this maybe my bouquet wouldn't have accidentally been left in the cooler to rot, but that's another story.

And the cake: okay, I might not have chosen this, but I still think it's absolutely beautiful! Obviously, I would have color coordinated everything. So keep dreamin' ladies! What would you change about your wedding day? And please, don't say your husband! That's probably the one thing I wouldn't change!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Do it yourself Anthropologie

Lynsee and I love window shopping at Anthropologie. Sometimes we even score and get to take something home. Often, we look at the shirts and try to think of ways we could make them ourselves for a fraction of the cost.

I recently went through my closet and pulled out all the shirts that I was hanging onto, yet hadn't worn in year(s). This resulted in a huge pile of unwanted clothes. I decided it was time to repurpose some of this "fabric" and attempt to re-create one of those "no rhyme or reason" Anthro shirts.

I grabbed a plain white tee shirt and two color coordinated discarded shirts. I chose shirts that were really thin, because I wanted a lighter feel to the shirt. I cut off a random strip from a shirt and layed it out along the neckline of the white tee in a pleated style.

Then, I pinned and sewed it on. Not hard, right?
Then, I cut out a few more strips. The greenish shirt I used had a great neckline, so I cut it off and pinned it on too. Essentially, I just layered on the fabric in a couple of rows, overlapping each row. Initially, I stopped the fabric halfway around the neckline, but I thought it looked weird on, so I continued it almost all the way around. I would definitely try on the shirt first and decide how low you want your design to come down.

30 minutes and 6 dollars later (yep, the white tee was $6!) Voila!

You could easily give many of your old, unwanted shirts a new life. Go ahead, try it! You've literally got nothing to lose!

P.S. It's my fellow bloggers birthday tomorrow (Wednesday). Happy Birthday, Lynsee!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Be clean and GREEN!

So, while Heidi and I were on our amazing girls trip this past week, I was lucky enough to get the biggest zit I've ever had in my life! I'm not even the slightest bit exaggerating! It took all I had to leave it alone, but I knew if I touched it I would definitely be noticed on Ellen, and not for my good looks! Tricia, our good friend, to the rescue!! Tricia told us all about her amazing body cloth from Norwex. This dandy little cloth contains silver particles that remove 99.99% of all bacteria with NO cleaning products. Because it contains those silver particles, the cloth itself remains clean. You just wet it, use it, hang it to dry and it cleans itself. Amazing, I must say! I used this bad boy and I wish I could say it removed that blemish, but it doesn't work miracles. It did make my skin feel great, clean and exfoliated, all without those pesky cleaners! I loved it so much, I could not stop asking questions about it. I was so pesky, in fact, Tricia brought me one of her extra cloths the following morning. Thanks Tricia!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

The Ellen Degeneres Show

Lucky us! We were able to attend the taping of today's Ellen show! IT WAS AWESOME!

Heidi, Marideth (friend), Lynsee

Friday, April 9, 2010

The Green Smoothie Girl

After trying multiple times to get my kids to eat their veggies, I've about given up! I once forced my oldest child to keep trying to get down a green bean until he eventually lost it, if you know what I mean! Poor kid...he really was trying. That is where I draw the line. I know it is so important for us to eat nutritious foods, but I also know how incredibly hard it is, at least for our family. Now comes my saving grace, hopefully! I heard about The Green Smoothie Girl from a relative of mine and immediately ordered her smoothie book.

I will begin to drink a green smoothie drink every morning to see if it really, in fact, will change my life. I'll let you know how it goes. If it goes well, I will be ordering this book as well. Not only am I doing this for health reasons, but I'm hoping it helps with the weight department as well!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Fun shoes for summer

Aren't these Crocs just the cutest little guys you have ever seen? Crocs make my summers SO much easier and happier. Shoes that are waterproof, require no socks, and are easy to put on make for a really, really happy mom. I have seen these in person and on first glance they look like a cute little sneaker. A bit more stylish than the average Croc.

These will be a must have for me this summer. I just need to find a place with a "buy one, get one" offer going on.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Before and After

Yesterday, I discovered HOME GOODS. How have I never been to this wonderful little mecca before? I could have spent hours browsing the shelves filled with decorating goodness for hours. Just as I was about to leave I decided to check out the lamp section. I have been on a hunt for lamps and haven't been able to find anything within the budget. Lamps can be so expensive! I saw many beautiful finds, then I stumbled upon this little treasure:

Clearance. Originally priced at $120, it was on sale for $22! I didn't like the lamp shade, but knew that could be fixed. I snatched it up and told anyone that would listen about my good deal. Once home, I grabbed up some fabric from my stash and spent about 30 minutes with a hot glue gun. Behold, the transformation:

Hooray for good deals!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Day Dreaming

When I'm daydreaming, which happens quite often, it's mostly about my future home. That not only includes the home itself, but also the location, surrounding area, acreage, etc, etc. I still haven't figured out where the "perfect" place will be, so if you have any suggestions please share! I do have my heart set on one thing though! I must, must have an apron front sink! May I repeat...I MUST have an apron front sink! I don't have a preference on the color except for one. Stainless. I really am not a huge fan of stainless steel sinks. Call me old-fashioned. I just love porcelain sinks. While browsing this morning, I stumbled upon this beauty and, must admit, I'd be mighty happy with this!

Thank you Southern living for sharing such a beautiful article.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Morning

This morning we made our traditional puff oven pancakes with the ever delightful Magleby's Fresh syrup. Magleby's is a little restaurant in Utah that I used to frequent while going to college there (I'll bet Lynsee has been there too). I still try to drop by for breakfast whenever I am in the area. The syrup is to die for, and this is the closest imitation I can find.
This breakfast is VERY easy to make, and very delicious (in my opinion), which is probably why I love it so much.
Puff Oven Pancakes
4 TBS butter
4 eggs
1 cup flour
1 cup milk
Preheat oven to 400 degrees
Place a casserole dish (I use a 9 by 13) with the butter in it in the oven to melt while it preheats.
Meanwhile, beat the eggs slightly and stir in the flour and milk. It will be lumpy. When the oven is preheated, pour the mixture into the casserole dish, right on top of the butter (no mixing necessary). Bake for 20 minutes.
Magleby's Syrup
1 cube butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup buttermilk
1 TBS vanilla
1 TBS corn syrup
1/2 tsp baking soda
Bring first five ingredients to a boil. Add baking soda. Boil for 10 seconds, then remove from heat immediately.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

A Nibble for the Bunny!

I have a "Wilson" neighbor. If you don't know what I'm talking about than you more than likely never saw Home Improvement. You missed out! Anyways, as I was talking to my neighbor over the fence today, she gave me the grandest idea! She asked me if I wanted some carrots. I'm sure I looked a bit puzzled by the question, but she quickly explained that her family tradition is to leave carrots out to lure the Easter Bunny in. How come I never thought of that? Simple, yet creative...Perfect! Take a look at those carrots! I wish I could say they came from my garden, but I can't. They are also from my amazing neighbor's, amazing garden. I know this is a little late, but maybe you can try it next year.

Friday, April 2, 2010

So Beautiful

I saw this necklace and absolutely fell in love with it. Isn't it so pretty?

{Via Design Mom}