Archive | October 2012

Our Brilliant Trip to the Pumpkin Patch

Today, we took our annual trip to the Peltzer Pumpkin Patch. We figured out that this is the 4th year we have gone. Here are some “then” and “now” pictures. I hope you enjoy them.

Joshua, Adam and Matthew sitting on a rusty truck, then

Matthew, Joshua and Emily sitting on a rusty truck, now.

Matthew in the pumpkin patch, then.

Matthew and the sibs in the pumpkin patch, now

Daddy and Adam in the corn maze, then

Daddy and Adam in the corn maze, now

Matt and Josh in front of the measuring stick, then.

Matthew and Joshua in front of the measuring stick, now.

Joshua holding a pumpkin, then

Joshua holding a pumpkin, now.

Taking pictures, then

taking pictures, now.

Emily Dawn, then

Emily Dawn, now.

Baby Adam, then

Baby Adam, now.

I hope you have enjoyed these brilliant memories. Thanks for viewing!


DIY Fabric-Covered Boxes

I promised a tutorial and here it is. These are my new thing – DIY fabric-covered boxes.

I got the idea from scouring pinterest to find storage soloutions for my closet. First, I went to Hobby Lobby and found some cute fabric for $6.99/yd, that I got with this 40% off coupon ( ) :-).  For these boxes I was making for the boys’ closet, I wanted to find something not too feminine, but still playful. I thought this fabric looked great so I bought 3 yards to cover two boxes. I used some empty boxes I had lying around, but I have found perfect storage boxes for FREE at Costco in their empty box bins.

Next, I got out my trusty glue gun. I know some crafters who use spray adhesive or use mod podge and those probably work fine, but I have a big ol’ bag of glue sticks and I’m not afraid to use them. I cut the fabric so it would be long enough to fold up and over the sides of the box.

I just cut a big rectangle. There’s probably a way to make a pattern and cut it into a big “plus +” sign, then fold it up and over, but I’m not patient enough for that, unfortunately. 😉 So I cut a big rectangle, pulled up one side nice and smooth, and shot a line of glue with my gun. Next, I used my scissors instead of my fingers to smooth the fabric over the hot glue.

Let me offer a warning for those unfamiliar with the dangers of using a hot glue gun. That stuff is HOT!!! I’ve burned my poor fingers more than I can count. (And that’s because I’ve burned them a lot, not because I can’t count that high.) 🙂  I suggest, keeping a bowl of ice water handy when using hot glue for quick finger submersion.

Next, come the corners. Now, corners can be a little tricky. Since our original “pattern” was cut into a rectangle, we will have a bunch of fabric on the ends that will need to be trimmed. Think about wrapping a present. The sides are easy, but the ends take some finesse. I cut down the edge and out to the side.

Then, I folded the edges in and glued the fabric to the box.

I thought about covering the inside, but honestly, I’m the only one who is going to see the inside of the box because it will sit on the top shelf of the closet. I did, however, have enough fabric left over to make another small box (remember I bought 3 yards.)

Wow! I didn’t notice it until now, but you can totally see through the fabric to the writing underneath! Well, maybe you might want to paint over the writing.

So that’s all there is to it, my friend. Give it a try and tell me how it turned out. Or, better, yet, blog about it and I’ll come over for a visit! 🙂

This entry was posted on October 26, 2012. 1 Comment

How to Clean Your Closet in an Hour

Clean out your closet in an hour, you say?

Yes. Yes, I do.

As you know, we just moved into this awesome new home, and I’m about 75% organized, I’d say. The bedroom where our boys sleep has a small walk-in closet. When we moved in, I just put everything that went into their room (and some things that didn’t) into the closet.


First, set the timer for ONE HOUR.  One hour, then you can relax and have some tea. 🙂 If you need more time, simply set the timer for 90 minutes or two hours, whatever you need to get the job done and get to that chair with a cup of tea. Do NOT stop until it is acceptably finished! Trust me, you won’t get back to it. 😉

Then, completely (or nearly completely) empty out your closet. I left the dresser in the closet, but changed the position because it would have been too difficult to drag the dresser out, then push it right back in. Still, I vacuumed the space and wiped down the wire shelves. I checked my timer at this point and it took me 9 minutes 29 seconds to empty out the closet.

Now, while I was taking things out, I was sorting them into four sections. Put Back In Closet/Donate/Throw Away/Move to Another Room. 

“Back into Closet” pile

“Throw Away” Pile

“Move to Another Room” pile

I don’t have a picture of my donate pile, but there was one, believe me. Most people have bins instead of piles, but piles work ok for me.

Remember, it does get messier before it gets cleaner. Do not despair. And for goodness sake, don’t stop!

Just Breathe.

I started with the board games and puzzles. I neatly stacked them on the top.

Then, I used some boxes I had covered with fabric (I’ll post a tutorial soon) and started putting the boys’ stuff away.

Here’s my boys’ finished closet

The total time took 58 minutes, 34 seconds. I admit, I still need to organize their drawers and get rid of clothes they can’t/won’t wear, but I don’t count that as cleaning the closet.

We still need to put together the bunk beds and fix their desk that got broken in the move, but a clean closet goes a long way toward getting organized.

I went for hot chocolate in my San Diego mug. Ahhh!

I hope this motivates you to clean out that messy closet that has been bugging you. Thanks for reading.

Kill Zombies and get free flowers

The Home Depot has a great way to get free lawn and garden supplies. Go to their facebook page and play Zombie Mulch.

They say “Mulch Zombies and help get your yard ready for winter.” It’s really kinda gross, but my boys loved it and were begging me to let them play.

The game goes like this, you get points for driving a mulch truck into zombies walking down the street. The zombies fly over your bumper and fall into the mulcher on the back of the truck. You have to watch out for pot holes and debris in the road and since you only get between 3-12 points per zombie, it takes a while to get to 1000 points which earns you a $5 off coupon. It took the boys literally over an hour to mulch up enough zombies to win Mama a $15 off coupon! But it was worth it! They got to play on my laptop (usually a BIG no-no) and I got to get free flowers! Seriously. I printed out the $15 coupon, went to The Home Depot and got 4 of these beauties. 

They were on sale for $3.98 each. I got 4 and handed the check out guy my coupon. the total came to $15 and change so I got them absolutely FREE! Love it!


Hope you have fun mulching those zombies! Happy planting!

Daddy Date Night

Every few days, our little Emily, who happens to be the only girl in a quiver full of boys, asks Daddy for a Daddy Date Night. Of course, my adorable hubby agrees without question (as he does when I ask for a date night :-)). This past week, Emily and Daddy went to the mall and took some of the most darling pictures.

When Daddy takes his girls out, he knows we like dessert!

Pretty pink boots.

Window shopping.

How does she already know how to pose? She was born feminine!

I love this picture! There are a rainbow of colors in this one. Pink, blue, green and purple. Beautiful! As soon as Dean clicked the camera to capture this moment, Emily turned and the moment was lost. I’m glad he caught it!

Daddy and Emily.

I love that she’s a Daddy’s girl. What a sweet picture of our brilliant life!

Making Spirit Day Shirts

Tomorrow is my kids’ Spirit Day and they are supposed to make shirts to support their school. Of course, I immediately went to Pinterest and looked up some ideas. I saw this DIY: SPRAY BLEACH SHIRT. and thought I’d give we’d give it a try. Here’s what I started with:

I decided to buy some vinyl letters and make some easy shirts.


I pressed on the vinyl letters so the bleach wouldn’t bleed through when I sprayed it.


All ready for the bleach

I used this spray that I had on hand. I added some regular bleach/water mix to it.

I bleached and waited and bleached and waited…

Umm…epic FAIL! No worries. I understand that a big part of DIY and crafting is trial and error, so I found some other shirts and tried again.


Unfortunately, the same thing happened with the next try. I think the bleach was too much for the thin vinyl letters, so I ended up pulling out my Scribbles Fabric Paints and created something new.

I kinda like them. It’s not what I had in mind originally, but sometimes trial and error produces the coolest designs.






This entry was posted on October 19, 2012. 2 Comments

The San Diego Safari Park

Yesterday, Our Elementary School (River Springs Charter School) went to the San Diego Safari Park (aka: Wild Animal Park). It was so much fun. The kids are still talking about it. Here are some pictures.

A fun day!


Flamingos. The gray, fuzzy ones are babies!

Emily and the Flamingos

Mama and baby gorilla

RSCS Friends




Fruit Bats











So, for the entire month of October, kids up to 11 years old get in FREE at the San Diego Zoo, the San Diego Safari Park and Sea World! If you live in the area, now is a great time to go!