How to Survive a Hurricane…with Toddlers

I’ve lived in Florida all my life (all 31 years) so I’ve seen my fair share of Tropical Depressions, Tropical Storms and Hurricanes.

I was 7 when Hurricane Andrew hit.

I was in college when we had 4 hurricanes hit in 2005.

I’ve seen streets flood.

I’ve had the power go out.

I’ve got kind of a “been there, done that” attitude about hurricanes, as most Floridians do.

We throw Hurricane parties.

Until we have kids.

Then, we have to figure out how to keep them (and us!) sane cooped up inside for DAYS…

Here’s a list of things we do on Hurricane Days:

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Homemade Granola Bars

Who does’t love a good granola bar?

My oldest daughter recently took a liking to them, which I was thrilled about!

They’re a healthy snack and one more thing she’ll actually eat! SCORE!

Except, I was paying $5 for 5 granola bars. Yikes.

And she would eat like one a day.

So pretty much every week, I was buying another box of granola bars.

I decided I wanted to try to make my own. How bad could it be? I had made granola before, so why not granola bars?

I scoured the Interwebs for recipes.

I wanted something with chocolate chips.

But still chewy.

Must be toddler approved.

I ended up using parts and pieces of a few different recipes. Here’s what I came up with:

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Olympic Crafts

We have had Olympic fever in this house since the Opening Ceremonies!

These are the first Olympics my kids have been old enough to watch and understand!

It’s been so fun sharing it with them!

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Emma says her favorite Olympian is “Katie Tedeky” aka Katie Ledeky.

We have been watching the Olympics almost every day and I have been encorporating crafts, which have been really fun for the girls.

They recognize the Olympic Rings now because they’ve made them and they talk about the gold medals because we’ve made our own.

Here are the slew of crafts we’ve completed over the last 14 days:

Torches

This was our first craft that we made for the Opening Ceremonies.

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They were quite simple:

Two toilet paper rolls

Painted gold or white (I looked up the past torches and they have all been gold or white)

Glue

Red, yellow or orange tissue paper for the flames

And that was it! For my older daughter, we wrote USA on hers since she is working on her letter recognition

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Recipe Share: Peach Jam

Back in May, we went peach picking at our neighbor’s orchard.

I spent a week cutting and pitting and freezing and cooking and baking peaches.

Last month, I decided I wanted to attempt to make Peach Jam. Usually, I make my strawberry jam in a bread maker, but it always comes out a little to runny for our family’s tastes.

So, this time, I decided to make it on the stove.

I attempted to make a no-pectin recipe, but it was looking too liquid to me, so I added pectin to it (following the directions on the pectin)

Here’s what my recipe ended up being:

One gallon-size Ziplock bag of frozen peaches (when I bagged them, it was probably 3-4 peaches)

2 1/2 cups sugar

Juice from 1 lemon

2 teaspoons fruit pectin

Cook down the frozen peaches, add sugar and lemon juice. Once all ingredients are melded in the pot, I poured into a mason jar and have been enjoying it on toast, PBJ and more!

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DIY: Stand-Up Craft Table

I’ve been asking for a craft table for I don’t know how long. 

For my birthday, my husband came home with wood. LOL

And built me a craft table for my new Cricut.

For the legs of the table, he used 2X2s. For the top piece, he went to a local lumber yard, Lakeland Lumber, and got a 22×36 piece of white wood.

We (meaning he) attached the legs of the table with these nifty little things:

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You screw these plates to the bottom of the table. Then, you pre-drill holes in the 2X2s and screwed in the threads. After that, you just screw the legs into the plates. Easy peasy!

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At first, I thought I wanted my table to be 40″ from the floor. Once we put it in the room, I changed my mind (it’s a woman’s right!) and decided I wanted it to be 36″ so we took it back to the garage and out 4″ off the legs with a mitre saw.

My craft room is teal and white, so we bought spray paint and are going to paint the top teal and the legs white.

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Birthday Party: Flamingo & Pineapple

Hello, August!

Which also means it’s MY BIRTHDAY (month)!

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This year, I decided to do a Flamingo & Pineapple theme, which was SO FUN! And very apropos because it’s the summer!

Plus, the Dollar Store had TONS of party supplies!!

I started by printing out several printables and putting them in picture frames all around the house.

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Then, I created a banner for the fireplace. I hand-cut flamingos and pineapples.

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Then, my husband gave me my birthday present: a FUCKING Cricut!!!!!!!!

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Complete game changer.

Every day for 4 days after, I made something for my party. So far, I’ve made a pineapple and flamingo shirt, plus a flamingo mug and a cake topper.

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For the food, we had TONS of pineapple! I made a strawberry tree with a pineapple top, Hawaiian tortellini salad, sausage and pineapple bites, spinach and strawberry said with poppyseed dressing, plus watermelon and grapes.

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Here are some more details from the party:

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Pineapple sunglasses: Oriental Trading

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Pineapple cups: Party City

Hair Clips: Peace Love and Glitz

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Aloha Cake Topper: Jolee Studio

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Flamingo cookie cutter & pool float: Amazon

All in all, it was a great party!

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If you have any questions about anything, please let me know! Leave a comment below!

 

 

 

 

Contributing Blogger!

Guys! I’m super excited to reveal that I have been asked to be a contributing blogger for a local Tampa Bay mom’s group, Everyday Moms. 

I recently published my first blog over there on some back-to-school DIY “Pinterest Picks.

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Head on over there to check it out! And keep a lookout for more DIY blogs from me!

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Chicken Treats For Hot Summer Days

As most of you know, I’m a new chicken mommy. We got 5 baby chicks for our girls (OK, they were for me!) on Easter.

These are them as babies:

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They stayed in a small rabbit cage until they were about 3-4 months old and it was getting a little crowded in there:

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Now, they live in their deluxe coop outside full time.

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In Florida. In summer.

The past few weeks have been brutal here (with real feel temperatures in the 100s- NOT KIDDING)

So, I decided to whip up some treats for them to keep them cool.

I took some corn and shucked it off the cob.

I put it in the bottom of a silicone tray (I think it’s supposed to be used for brownies lol) and topped it with water.

Then, I freezed them and got frozen corn treats for our girls! (Yes, they’re all girls now!)

*side note: we recently “traded” out our rooster for another hen. Meet Dory:

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They ate them right up!

Bonus: Our newest girl decided to lay eggs the day after I gave her these treats! Coincidence? I think not!

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I never thought I’d grow up to be that crazy chicken lady, but here I am, killin’ it:image

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Madeline Dresses

 “In an old house in Paris that was covered in vines, lived twelve little girls in two straight lines.”

For a while, I had been eyeing some cute Madeline dresses I had seen on Pinterest.

I happen to be lucky and have a very crafty grandma who can sew, and I asked her to make them for me.

She offered to help. 

Oh grandma, you cruel, cruel woman.

So I reluctantly bought a pattern from Etsy and cut it out.

And there it sat for about two months.

Right before my grandma left to go back to Michigan (snowbirds. ugh), she had me over to her house and we busted out one of the dresses in a few hours.

Then, she left.

And I had the sew the next one. By. My. Self. *gasp*

With a little help from the hubby, we finished both dresses (we had to sew on buttons and make button holes) in about 2-3 days.

Then, I bought some hats from Amazon and added a little extra long black ribbon.

Let me just tell you: They. Were. Presh.

Don’t take my word for it. See for yourself:

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Side note: these pictures were taken in Downtown Plant City. GREAT place for taking pictures!!!

Quiche with Leftovers


After we made our whole chicken, I used some of the left over meat, plus lots of veggies to make a delicious quiche I’ve been eating every day since!

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Here are the veggies I used:

Onion (diced)

tomato

brocolli

leftover corn (cut off the cob)

chicken

All put in the bottom of a pre-made pie crust. Poke holes in the bottom of the pie crust first with a fork!

Then, in a bowl I whisked together 4 eggs and 1-2 tablespoons of whole milk (you could also use Half and Half).

Pour the egg mixture over the veggies in the pie crust.

Top with cheese! You could use shredded, but I just sliced some off the block of cheese. I used organic cheddar cheese.

Then I baked it in the oven at 400 for 20-25 minutes.

Enjoy!

 

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