Sunday, August 21, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #135

Messy Messy Fail - I thought I was all set to make venison tacos with my favorite homemade taco seasoning - I got the sealed package out of the freezer this morning to thaw during the day.  I was quite disappointed when I realized I had grabbed medium heat ITALIAN venison instead of just ground.  Don't try making Italian tacos, doesn't work too well.

Tidy Victory - It's taken me four years to figure it out, but I finally know how to clean my stainless steel appliances.  Clean with vinegar, then go over and "polish" with oil.  No fingerprints, no streaks, picture perfect!  Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #134

Messy Messy Fail - One of the final steps in our kitchen facelift project this summer is sealing the grout on our groutable vinyl tile.  Because it is not sealed yet, the water bowl for the animals currently sits on our L.L. Bean waterhog mat in the middle of a doorway.  I've completely kicked the water bowl over 3 times now.  It has since been moved into the powder room.

Tidy Victory - We were finally able to visit some friends in a neighboring town who had a baby about two months ago.  I always like to make a dinner for new parents - if I can relieve them of one duty for the day I am happy to do so.  My husband requested I make his favorite enchilada recipe for them - Chicken and Black Bean Enchiladas by Robin Miller from the Food Network.  I believe there were no leftovers, so I think they liked them!  And I got to hold a newborn for a good chunk of time, so that's a win-win in my book! 

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Thomas Land - A Family Review

Messy Messy Fail - I met a friend and her two sons for a swim date at one of our local pools. I slathered both of my boys in sun block, and I thought I had covered myself pretty well.  One day and a nasty back sunburn later, I realized what I had missed.  Ouch.

Tidy Victory - I was in Cleveland, OH over the weekend enjoying some much overdue college friend reunion time when I remembered that the Olympic opening ceremonies were on! I had only missed the first 45 minutes so I quickly texted my husband to record them.  Do you think I've watched them yet?  Nope :)  Going to save the recording for Saturday night!

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #133


Messy Messy Fail - Let's do a throwback - in college you remember from this post that I was not familiar with the kitchen, the stove or food preparation in general in college.  One night my dearest roommate Topic informed me it was my turn to cook us dinner.  The frozen Morning Star burgers we had in the freezer called for using a skillet - we didn't have one of those (wink wink)!  Or to be exact, I had no idea what that was.  We had frying pans and such, but as far as I knew no skillet.  So OF COURSE I ran upstairs to ask our male housemates if they knew what a skillet was, could I borrow one, etc.  Let's just say I was humiliated on their front step.  If they could only see me now!

Tidy Victory - I am typing as we speak from an undisclosed location in Cleveland, OH and having a BLAST with some college friends.  We have not all been together for at least 4 years and are having a terrific time catching up and reminiscing about one of the best times of our lives.  Always remember to keep in touch with your friends near or far - it's worth it.


Sunday, July 31, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #132

Messy Messy Fail - Note to self - bring more than one cover-up on a beach vacation next time.  I felt fun and glamorous for a couple of days, but then my beach cover-up became just plain old beachy and gross.

Tidy Victory - I had planned on making a few dinners and eating out a few times on our recent family vacation.  I ALWAYS bring a crockpot so I can put dinner in before we leave in the morning and have it ready after our day's activities.  I happened to run across this recipe I had on my Pinterest for Mississippi Roast, grabbed the 5 ingredients I needed from the local Stop & Shop and VOILA - a DELICIOUS dinner was served.  


Friday, July 29, 2016

How to Create an Image Map for Your Blog


Messy Messy Fail - My husband and I still have our water shoes that we purchased from our honeymoon trip to Jamaica.  I knew we would need them again, so I kept them safely tucked away in storage in the basement.  Fast forward to now, going on our first family vacation to Cape Cod - perfect time to use our water shoes!  I managed to bring both of mine, but only one of my poor husband's.  No good.


Tidy Victory - In a desperate last minute attempt to find a bathing suit 12 hours before we were set to leave for our vacation, I ran into TJ Maxx to see what was available.  Definitely a disappointingly small selection, although it is the end of July so I shouldn't have been surprised.  There was a pretty heinous looking suit in my size - black with a multi-color flower pattern - that I figured it couldn't hurt to try it on.  It was a long shot, but low and behold I was pleasantly surprised!  Excellent shopping lesson - you can't judge clothing on the hanger!


Sunday, July 24, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #131

Messy Messy Fail - Upon arriving at our vacation destination, I proceeded to unpack the clean sheets I brought and started making the beds.  Our vacation house rooms had fans above the beds - something I am not used to.  So with a flick of my wrists and a flourish of the linens, I threw the sheet over the bed only to have it get stuck in the fan.  It only made a few trips around before I was able to safely retrieve it.  Nothing like a simple household ceiling fan to make things a little more interesting.  

Tidy Victory - Holy cow - our kids were beyond excellent on our nine hour car ride!  I did bring a few sticker books and some movies to keep them occupied, but they didn't even really need them.  Minimal complaining, a few questions but lots of laughs and even a little nap!  Who knew we had nothing to worry about!

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #130

Messy Messy Fail - Perhaps you weren't up early enough to notice that I definitely forgot to set up this party post at the appointed time of 3 AM est.  If I missed you I am so sorry - if I didn't and you had no idea I forgot, pretend like you didn't just read this and link up below :)

Tidy Victory - I finally went through and reogranized both of the kids' clothing drawers.  It's amazing how fast they go through clothing.  The UPKer, soon to be kindergartener, shot up over the winter a whole size that I had not anticipated.  It's nice to have all their clothes put away - I kept having to make piles of clothes on the floor because they wouldn't fit in the drawer!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #129

Messy Messy Fail - Do you remember this game?  Perhaps you had this in your household like I did - "Let's Go Fishin'" is what it's called.  You have to catch fish with little plastic fishing poles.  But that's hard to do when the UPKer snaps off all the ends of the little plastic fishing poles.





Tidy Victory - Talk about amazing customer service - I called Pressman (the manufacturer) and they immediately sent me four brand new fishing poles.  We can play the game again, hooray!  The boys are NOT allowed to play the game without an adult, no more pole snapping for those two!






Saturday, July 9, 2016

Homemade Pancake and Waffle Mix

Messy Messy Fail - I have now successfully killed 3 Rheingold arborvitae bushes.  The first was because I accidentally fed it fertilizer - my bad.  The second I'm not quite sure why, it just seemed to die off on its own.  The last was a replant between my large rhododendron and burning bush.  The arborvitae was fine over the winter when the foliage was gone and the bush got plenty of sun, but as soon as the leaves of the surrounded plants grew in - bye bye.  I planted a chunk of hosta where the arborvitae breathed its last breath - rest in peace my dear arborvitae.

Tidy Victory - I fixed Creaky Cranky!!!!!!  Creaky Cranky is the cranky crane on the island of Sodor with Thomas the Train.  He is a key character on the Thomas the Train show of which we watch daily.  He is also a key feature of our Thomas the Train collection in our home.  When Creaky doesn't crank, my CHILDREN are cranky.  So when Creaky no longer cranked one day, I researched on YouTube quickly and found an amazing person who posted a how-to video for fixing Creaky.  It wasn't exactly the same situation, but it gave me enough information to complete the surgery (with a special screwdriver I had to purchase!) and my children were no longer cranky.  Just an FYI - I can't fix much so this was a miracle!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #128

Messy Messy Fail - I have now successfully killed three arborvitae rheingold bushes.  First time I fed one fertilizer and you are not supposed to do that with evergreens (you learn something new every day!).  The second one I'm not quite sure, it just died.  The third was because I transplanted it to a different part of the front yard (looked dumb where I originally planted it) but it did not get enough sunlight when the rhododendron and burning bush on either side of it grew in for the summer.  My kind neighbor always reminds me that gardening is about trial and error.  I seem to be having many errors lately.

Tidy Victory - I figured out what to do with all of the black bananas I have frozen in my freezer - smoothies!  If I buy them and my boys just aren't feeling them, they just go brown and I hate to throw them away.  I do like making banana bread with them, but you can only make so much of it.  All you need is a handful of ice cubes, a cup of OJ, a brown banana and some strawberries in the blender - a cold, healthy option that helps eliminate waste (or at least in my house!).

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Happiness Is Homemade Link Party #127

Messy Messy Fail - I have found the nearly half of the videos on our Sony camcorder will not be uploaded to IMovie - you can upload but when you disconnect the camera it disappears.  

Tidy Victory - A quick Google search helped me find the answer - for whatever reason the camera only recognized the video clips' source as the camera.  Solution - download the clips AGAIN from the camera to my desktop and import again to IMovie.  This may take a little bit of time to go through this process for the videos that won't upload directly into IMovie, but I am just thrilled they aren't gone for good!  I can work weekends GeekSquad, let me know......